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The Hindu Newspaper Analysis 20 January 2023

The Hindu Newspaper Analysis for UPSC

The Hindu Newspaper Analysis 19 January 2023

  • The Supreme Court Collegium on Thursday stood firm by its resolve to have the government appoint openly gay lawyer Saurabh Kirpal as Delhi High Court judge, saying every individual is “entitled to maintain their own dignity and individuality based on sexual orientation”.
  • The three-member collegium of Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K.M. Joseph took the rare decision to publish the full extent of the government’s objections to Mr. Kirpal, based on his sexuality and his “passionate” advocacy for LGBTQ+ rights.
  • The collegium referred to letters from the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), forwarded by the government, frowning upon Mr. Kirpal’s partner being a Swiss national, that they have an “intimate relationship” and the lawyer is “open about his sexual orientation”. The government, the collegium said, was also worried that same-sex marriage was not recognised in India though “homosexuality stands decriminalised”.
  • “Moreover,” the collegium quoted the Law Minister’s missive of April 2021 stating that Mr. Kirpal’s “passionate attachment to gay rights” did not rule out the “possibility of bias and prejudice”.
  • Article 217 of the Constitution: It states that the Judge of a High Court shall be appointed by the President in consultation with the Chief Justice of India (CJI), the Governor of the State.
  • In the case of appointment of a Judge other than the Chief Justice, the Chief Justice of the High Court is consulted.
  • Consultation Process: High Court judges are recommended by a Collegium comprising the CJI and two senior-most judges.
  • The proposal, however, is initiated by the Chief Justice of the High Court concerned in consultation with two senior-most colleagues.

The Hindu Editorial Today

  • The Supreme Court Collegium, in separate resolutions published on Thursday, backed the right to free speech of two lawyers recommended for appointments as judges in the Madras and Bombay High Courts.
  • “All citizens have the right to free speech and expression under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution. Expression of views by a candidate does not disentitle him to hold a constitutional office so long as the person proposed for judgeship is a person of competence, merit and integrity,” the collegium of Chief Justice of India D.Y. Chandrachud and Justices S.K. Kaul and K.M. Joseph said.
  • It refused to drop the name of advocate R. John Sathyan for the Madras High Court merely because the government received an Intelligence Bureau report that he had shared a Web portal’s article critical of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and another regarding the death of a medical aspirant who was unable to clear NEET, while portraying it as a “political betrayal”.
  • Sharply contradicting the government’s opinion on the lawyer, the collegium said, on the other hand, there was “no material to indicate that the expressions used by the candidate [Mr. Sundaresan] are suggestive of his links with any political party with strong ideological leanings”. In fact, the issues discussed by Mr. Sundaresan in his posts were part of public debate in the media, the judges’ body said.
  • The collegium reiterated the names of advocates Amitesh Banerjee and Sakya Sen for Calcutta High Court judgeships. It had recommended these two names four years ago in December 2018. The government returned them in November 2022 without citing “fresh material or ground” for its objection.

  • The citizens’ committee to save the Chamundi Hills has resolved to press for clearance from the heritage committee before the implementation of development works at the hill top under Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual Heritage Augmentation Drive (PRASHAD).
  • The PRASHAD scheme is a Union government project and infrastructure works worth ₹49.5 crore will be taken up ostensibly for providing amenities to the tourists. The details of the scheme remain sketchy and has drawn the ire of the citizens, activists and NGOs in the absence of any credible information.
  • The Chamundi Betta Ulisi Horata Samiti, which is an umbrella organisation of various NGOs and activist citizens, met here on Thursday and resolved to meet the Deputy Commissioner next week and inform him of their apprehensions about the projects.
  • Situated in Mysuru, Karnataka, is a natural wonder, and it carries with it the rich cultural heritage of the city and its beautiful landscape. It witnesses thousands of devotees visiting it daily, making it one of the busiest tourist attractions in Mysuru.
  • On the southeastern part of Mysuru, Chamundi Betta is a small hill with lush green vegetation. It houses a shrine where the people worship the Goddess Chamundeshwari or Durga, the warrior Goddess.

What is PRASHAD scheme?

  • It is also called as the ‘National Mission on Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive’ (PRASHAD).
  • It is a Central Sector Scheme fully financed by the Government of India.
  • Launched by the Ministry of Tourism in the year 2014-15.
  • Objective: Integrated development of identified pilgrimage and heritage destinations.
  • It includes infrastructure development such as entry points (Road, Rail and Water Transport), last mile connectivity, basic tourism facilities.

  • Ten years have passed since the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012, enacted in consequence to India’s ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1992, came into effect on November 14, 2012.
  • The aim of this special law is to address offences of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse of children, which were either not specifically defined or in adequately penalised.
  • Amidst the debate on the poor conviction rate under POCSO and a lowering of the age of consent from 18 years to 16 years (though rejected by the Central government), it is worth evaluating its impact on the ground.
  • A significant feature of the POCSO Act is its gender-neutral nature. Even though the National Crime Records Bureau has not published data on male and female victims separately, in Chhattisgarh, male child victims accounted for about eight in every 1,000 POCSO cases (0.8%).
  • Second, there is sufficient general awareness now to report cases of sexual exploitation of children not only by individuals but also by institutions as non-reporting has been made a specific offence under the POCSO Act.
  • The storage of child pornography material has been made a new offence. Further, the offence of ‘sexual assault’ has been defined in explicit terms (with increased minimum punishment) unlike an abstract definition of ‘outraging modesty of a woman’ in the Indian Penal Code.
  • The POCSO Act provides for recording the statement of the affected child by a woman sub-inspector at the child’s residence or place of choice. But it is practically impossible to comply with this provision when the number of women in the police force is just 10%, and many police stations hardly have women staff.
  • Similarly, though there is a provision to record statements using audio-video means, and a Supreme Court judgment, Shafhi Mohammad vs The State of Himachal Pradesh (2018), on capturing and preserving the scene of crime of heinous offences using audio-video means (followed by standardization of technical specifications by the Bureau of Police Research and Development for uniformity), the pilot project has yet to be implemented across States.
  • Further, the time mandated to complete investigation of rape (as in the CrPC, without a similar provision in the POCSO Act) is two months.
  • Second, if a charge sheet was not put up in 90 days of the arrest of the accused, he/she was granted bail. Now, when a charge sheet is put up in 60 days of the FIR (and not arrest), the accused may seek bail immediately after the filing of the charge sheet. Thus, it is the accused, and not the victim, who gets the benefit of completing an investigation in a shorter time.

  • After a gap of four years, the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) report for 2022 was recently released in New Delhi. This nationwide household survey that covers all rural districts in the country generates estimates for schooling and basic learning for every State in India.
  • Data from 2018 and 2022 can be compared with longer run trends over the last decade to see how the COVID-19 years have impacted India.
  • The National Education Policy 2020 gives high priority to the acquisition of foundational literacy and numeracy skills especially for children in early grades. “NIPUN Bharat” (where NIPUN is National Initiative for Proficiency in Reading with Understanding and Numeracy) the government’s flagship programme designed to translate policy into practice, is beginning to have traction in many States.
  • In 2018, the all-India rural enrolment figure for the age group 6-14 years was 97.2%. In ASER 2022 data, this is now 98.4%. The rise has been accompanied by a significant shift away from private schools to government schools.
  • On the ‘plus’ side, rising enrolment means that more students can benefit for longer, sustained periods of time from schooling.
  • ASER evidence suggests that basic learning levels of middle schoolchildren have remained low and stagnant for over a decade. The “value” add of each year of middle school is small.

ASER Report

  • It is the key annual, citizen-led household national survey that captures the state of foundational literacy and numeracy in the country.
  • It aims to understand whether children in rural India are enrolled in school and whether they are learning.
  • The survey provides representative estimates of the enrolment status of children aged 3-16 and the basic reading and arithmetic levels of children aged 5-16 at the national, state and district level.
  • The survey is led by the Pratham Foundation and the first ASER was conducted in 2005 and repeated annually for ten years.
  • ASER 2022 is the first field-based ‘basic’ nationwide ASER after a gap of 4 years. It comes at a time when children are back in school after an extended period of school closure.

  • A proposal by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology that seeks to force social media platforms to take down content “fact-checked” by the Government’s Press Information Bureau (PIB) as false needs to be opposed without even a second look.
  • The proposed amendment to the IT Rules opens the door for the PIB or any other agency “authorised by the central government for fact checking” for the purpose of such takedowns.
  • At the most basic level, the question to be asked is how a wing of the “nodal agency of the Government of India”, whose job is “to disseminate information to the print and electronic media on government policies, programmes, initiatives and achievements”, could be the deciding authority on what is factual and what is not.

  • Data from the National Family Health Survey-5 (NFHS-5) indicate that more than the wealth of a person, awareness levels play a relatively superior role in diabetes incidence.
  • The NFHS-5 data indicate that 10.6% of women in the poorest 20% households were either on medication to control diabetes or have a random blood glucose level higher than 140 mg/dL (milligrams per decilitre). The corresponding figure for the richest 20% of households is 17%.
  • Diet, physical activity, also the kinds of stress levels, sleep levels, all these are important contributors to body inflammation, which is the underlying basis of both diabetes and cardiovascular disease. The poor now consume far less fruit and vegetables.
  • Diabetes is a Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) that occurs either when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin (a hormone that regulates blood sugar, or glucose), or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin, it produces.

Type 1 Diabetes:

  • It is also known as juvenile diabetes (as it mostly affects children of age 14-16 years), this type occurs when the body fails to produce sufficient insulin.
  • It is predominantly diagnosed in children and adolescents. Although the prevalence is less, it is much more severe than type 2.

Type 2 Diabetes:

  • It affects the way the body uses insulin. While the body still makes insulin.
  • Type 2 diabetes can occur at any age, even during childhood. However, this type of diabetes occurs most often in middle-aged and older people.
  • Impacts of Diabetes: It affects the five major organs namely, Kidney, Heart, Blood vessels, Nervous System, and Eyes (retina).
  • Factors Responsible: Factors that lead to increase in diabetes are an unhealthy diet, lack of physical activity, harmful use of alcohol, overweight/obesity, tobacco use, etc.

Q) Consider the following statements regarding Annual Status of Education Report (ASER):

  1. ASER is published by the Union Ministry of Education annually.
  2. It uses household rather than school-based sampling.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

शिक्षा की वार्षिक स्थिति रिपोर्ट (एएसईआर) के संबंध में निम्नलिखित कथनों पर विचार करें:

  1. असर हर साल केंद्रीय शिक्षा मंत्रालय द्वारा प्रकाशित किया जाता है।
  2. यह स्कूल-आधारित नमूने के बजाय घरेलू उपयोग करता है।

उपरोक्त कथनों में से कौन-सा/से सही है/हैं?

  1. केवल 1
  2. केवल 2
  3. 1 और 2 दोनों
  4. न तो 1 और न ही 2

Explanation :
The ASER Report 2022 released recently revealed that almost all (98.4%) students in the age bracket of 6-14 years are now enrolled in schools.

About ASER Survey:

  • It is a citizen-led household survey that provides estimates of the enrolment status of children aged 3-16 and the basic reading and arithmetic levels of children aged 5-16 at the national, state and district level.
  • ASER is published by NGO Pratham, and the survey has been conducted every year since 2005.
  • The survey reaches children in the age group of 3-16 in almost all rural districts of India.
  • It uses household rather than school-based sampling.

Q) Consider the following statements regarding Living will:

  1. A Living will specifies the desired medical care a person wishes to have if the person is not in a position to make an informed decision.
  2. A voice recording of a person’s last wishes can be treated as a living will.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

लिविंग विल के संबंध में निम्नलिखित कथनों पर विचार करें:

  1. यदि व्यक्ति सूचित निर्णय लेने की स्थिति में नहीं है तो एक लिविंग वांछित चिकित्सा देखभाल को निर्दिष्ट करेगा।
  2. किसी व्यक्ति की अंतिम इच्छा की वॉयस रिकॉर्डिंग को लिविंग वसीयत के रूप में माना जा सकता है।

उपरोक्त कथनों में से कौन-सा/से सही है/हैं?

  1. केवल 1
  2. केवल 2
  3. 1 और 2 दोनों
  4. न तो 1 और न ही 2

About Advance Medical Directive/Living will

  • What is it? It is a document prescribing a person’s wishes regarding the medical treatment the person would want if he/she was unable to share his/her wishes or not in a position to make an informed decision by reason of being unconscious or in a coma.
  • Who can draw up an Advance Medical Directive/Living Will?
  • An adult who is of a sound and healthy mind and in a position to communicate, relate and comprehend the purpose and consequences of executing the document.
  • It must be voluntary.

Elements of a Living will:

  • It should be in writing and should clearly state as to when medical treatment may be withdrawn or if specific medical treatment that will have the effect of delaying the process of death should be given.
  • Instructions must be absolutely clear and unambiguous.
  • It should mention whether the patient may revoke the instructions/authority at any time.

Q) Nagarathas community, recently seen in news, hails from which state?

  1. Maharashtra
  2. Karnataka
  3. Tamil Nadu
  4. Madhya Pradesh

हाल ही में खबरों में रहा नागराठा समुदाय किस राज्य से है?

  1. महाराष्ट्र
  2. कर्नाटक
  3. तमिलनाडु
  4. मध्य प्रदेश

About Nattukotai Nagarathas

  • Also called Nattukottai Chettiars, Nagarathas are a people of Indian origin, well known for their financial dealings and hospitality.
  • They are followers of the Hindu religion and worship the Shiva and Muruga deities of the Hindu faith.
  • They belong to a very prolific Business Community, who in olden days moved out of India to foreign lands like Burma, Ceylon, Java, Sumatra, Malaysia, Singapore & Vietnam (Saigon) .
  • They hail from a place called Chettinad, an area situated in the South-Eastern region of Tamil Nadu.
  • They are considered the pioneers of modern banking.
  • They introduced concepts like pattru (debit), varavu (credit), selavu (expenditure), laabam (profit) and nashtam (loss). These are all collectively known as iynthogai (trial balance) – a unified document which reflects the current financial status of the business at any given time.

Q) With reference to the AK-203, consider the following statements:

  1. It is a high-quality and convenient rocket system.
  2. It is manufactured by a joint venture between India and France.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

AK-203 के संदर्भ में निम्नलिखित कथनों पर विचार कीजिये:

  1. यह एक उच्च गुणवत्ता वाला और सुविधाजनक रॉकेट सिस्टम है।
  2. यह भारत और फ्रांस के बीच एक संयुक्त उद्यम द्वारा निर्मित है।

उपरोक्त कथनों में से कौन-सा/से सही है/हैं?

  1. केवल 1
  2. केवल 2
  3. 1 और 2 दोनों
  4. तो 1 और ही 2

Explanation :

Recently, the Indo-Russian Rifles Private Limited (IRRPL), has started producing AK-203 Kalashnikov assault rifles at Korwa in Uttar Pradesh.

About AK-203

  • The AK-203 rifles are manufactured in a joint venture between India and Russia.
  • These are high-quality, convenient and modern small arms.
  • This model combines excellent ergonomics, adaptability to different shooters and high-performance characteristics, it is one of the best assault rifles in the world.
  • The joint venture plans to ensure 100% localisation of the production of AK-203 rifles in India.

What is Indo-Russian Rifles Private Limited (IRRPL)?

  • The IRRPL was set up in 2019 jointly between erstwhile OFB [now Advanced Weapons and Equipment India Limited (AWEIL) and Munitions India Limited (MIL)] of India and Rosoboron export and Kalashnikov of Russia.

Q) With reference to the Grameen Udyami Scheme, consider the following statements:

  1. It is a skill training scheme for the tribal communities.
  2. It is funded by the National Skill Development Corporation.

Which of the above statements is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

ग्रामीण उद्यमी योजना के संदर्भ में निम्नलिखित कथनों पर विचार कीजिये:

  1. यह जनजातीय समुदायों के लिए एक कौशल प्रशिक्षण योजना है।
  2. यह राष्ट्रीय कौशल विकास निगम द्वारा वित्त पोषित है।

उपरोक्त कथनों में से कौन-सा/से सही है/हैं?

  1. केवल 1
  2. केवल 2
  3. 1 और 2 दोनों
  4. न तो 1 और न ही 2

Explanation :

Union Minister of State for Skill Development & Entrepreneurship will attend the felicitation ceremony of over 200 tribal women who have completed training under Phase 3 of the Grameen Udyami Scheme in Jharkhand.

  • It was launched to augment skill training in tribal communities for inclusive and sustainable growth.
  • It is funded by the National Skill Development Corporation.
  • The project is being implemented in Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, and Gujarat.
  • It is implemented under the Sansadiya Sankul Pariyojana to expand the rural/local economy, enhance employment opportunities, reduce forced migration and also lead to the conservation of natural resources.

Mains Practice Question:

Q) Critically evaluate the functioning of NITI Aayog since its inception. (150 words)

नीति आयोग की स्थापना के बाद से इसके कामकाज का आलोचनात्मक मूल्यांकन करें। (150 शब्द)

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FAQs

Nagarathas community, recently seen in news, hails from which state?

Tamil Nadu

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