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The Hindu Newspaper Analysis 3rd September 2022

 

The Hindu Newspaper Analysis for UPSC

 

Quad Senior Meeting

  • New Delhi will host an official-level meeting of the Quad grouping with the U.S., Japan and Australia next week, the first such “senior officers meeting” (SOM) to be held since the recent escalation of tensions over the Taiwan Strait.
  • “balancing” moves ahead of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Uzbekistan in mid-September.

Vikrant

Navy new Ensign

  • Vikrant (which means courageous) is named after India’s first aircraft carrier, bought from the UK and commissioned in 1961.
    • The first INS Vikrant was a major symbol of national pride and played an important role in several military operations including the 1971 Indo-Pak War before being decommissioned in 1997. Now India’s first homemade aircraft carrier will carry the name of her illustrious predecessor.

New Navy Ensign

  • Moving away from the colonial past, the Indian Navy on Friday adopted a new ensign inspired by the seal of Maratha king Chhatrapati Shivaji.
  • “The President of India has approved the introduction of the new designs of the naval ensign, as also the distinguishing flags, masthead pennants and car flags for the Indian Navy,” the Navy said in a statement.
  • This is the fourth time the naval ensign has been changed since 1950.
  • The octagon is with twin golden octagonal borders encompassing the golden National Emblem (Lion Capital of Ashoka — under scribed with ‘Satyamev Jayate’ in blue Devanagari script) resting atop an anchor; and superimposed on a shield. Below the shield, within the octagon, in a golden-bordered ribbon on a navy blue background, is inscribed the motto of the Indian Navy ‘Sam No Varunah’ in golden Devanagari script.
  • “The twin octagonal borders draw their inspiration from Shivaji Maharaj’s rajmudra or the seal of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, one of the prominent Indian kings with a visionary maritime outlook, who built a credible naval fleet that earned grudging admiration from European navies operating in the region at the time,” the Navy said.

Counting curses

  • Selfie with Daughter Foundation launches innovative campaign in U.P. to keep a check on profane language.
  • To make Uttar Pradesh free of abusive language, the foundation has launched an innovative campaign whereby a chart is put up in houses and the number of abuses hurled by male members of a family in a day are marked and counted.
  • Jaglan started the Beti Bachao campaign in 2012 in his village in Jind district of Haryana.
  • His Selfie with Daughter initiative has been praised by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and a national award-winning documentary has been made on his work.
  • The foundation has also launched a period chart in which the date of the start of menstruation of members at home is noted every month.

POCSO court in Walayar

About Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012:

  1. It was enacted to protect the children from offences of sexual assault, sexual harassment and pornography with due regard for safeguarding the interest and well-being of children.
  2. It was amended in August 2019 to provide more stringent punishment, including the death penalty, for sexual crimes against children.
  3. It defines a child as any person below eighteen years of age and regards the best interests and welfare of the child as a matter of paramount importance at every stage, to ensure the healthy physical, emotional, intellectual and social development of the child.
  4. It deems a sexual assault to be “aggravated” under certain circumstances, such as when the abused child is mentally ill or when the abuse is committed by a person in a position of trust or authority like a family member, police officer, teacher, or doctor.
  5. It also casts the police in the role of child protectors during the investigative process.
  6. The Act stipulates that a case of child sexual abuse must be disposed of within one year from the date the offence is reported.

NPT

  • The NPT is a multilateral treaty aimed at limiting the spread of nuclear weapons including three elements: (1) non-proliferation, (2) disarmament, and (3) peaceful use of nuclear energy. These elements constitute a “grand bargain” between the five nuclear weapon states and the non-nuclear weapon states.
    • The treaty was signed in 1968 and entered into force in 1970.
    • The Treaty defines nuclear weapon states (NWS) as those that had manufactured and detonated a nuclear explosive device prior to 1 January 1967. All the other states are therefore considered non-nuclear weapon states (NNWS).
    • The five nuclear weapon states are China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
    • The Treaty does not affect the right of state parties to develop, produce, and use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.

World Nuclear Inventories

  • India, Israel, North Korea and Pakistan (South Africa developed nuclear weapons but the apartheid regime destroyed them and joined NPT in 1991 before relinquishing power to majority rule).
  • the nuclear have-nots successfully negotiated a Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW, also called Ban Treaty) in 2017 that entered into force in January 2021.
  • The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) was concluded in 1996 but has yet to formally enter into force because two major powers, the U.S. and China, have yet to ratify it.

India's cyber infrastructure

  • There has been a steady spike in cases of cybercrime in the last five years. According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), from 12,317 cases of cybercrime in 2016, there were 50,035 cases registered in 2020.
  • In India, cybercrime is increasing with the increased use of information and communication technology (ICT).
  • With ‘police’ and ‘public order’ being in the State List, the primary obligation to check crime and create the necessary cyberinfrastructure lies with States.
  • Though the Government of India has taken steps that include the setting up of the Indian Cybercrime Coordination Centre (I4C) under the Ministry of Home Affairs to deal with all types of cybercrime, much needs to be done to plug the infrastructural deficit.

Distress in West Bengal

  • In response to a question by Trinamool Congress MP Jawhar Sircar on August 3, the Ministry of Rural Development informed the Rajya Sabha that West Bengal was the only State in the country that had received no funds for 2022-23 from the Centre under MGNREGS.
  • In response to another question in the Rajya Sabha on July 20, the Ministry of Rural Development pointed out that the Centre had ₹3,989.58 crore pending liabilities for the wage component under MGNREGS and that it owed ₹2,605.82 crore (about 65%) to West Bengal.
  • In response to Sircar’s question and several other questions in Parliament on why funds to West Bengal had been stopped, the Centre cited “non-compliance of directives of the Central Government” under Section 27 of the MGNREGA, 2005.
  • Section 27 says the Central government may order stoppage of release of funds to the scheme and institute appropriate remedial measures for proper implementation within a reasonable period of time.

Paddy Cultivation

  • 62% decrease in the area covered this year compared to 2021, data show
  • According to the data released by the Union Agriculture Ministry on Friday, the decrease in the area of paddy cultivation is 22.90 lakh hectares, 5.62% less than the area covered in 2021.
  • Farmers’ organisations have been maintaining that the higher input cost, particularly the increase in prices of fertilizers, is the main reason for the decrease in paddy cultivation apart from scarcity of water.

Effect of rate increases unclear

  • The success of the Reserve Bank of India’s interest rate increases in controlling inflation is not yet clear, and the pace of rate adjustment will depend on the state of the economy, monetary policy committee (MPC) member J.R. Varma said on Friday.

 

Mains Practice Question:

Q) Are freebies affecting the economic growth of India? Explain. (150 words)

क्या मुफ्त उपहार भारत के आर्थिक विकास को प्रभावित कर रहे हैं? समझाना। (150 शब्द)

Introduction:

  • The issue of freebies given out by Indian states has come under the lens here. Over the years the freebies have become an integral part of the politics in India, be it for making promises in the electoral battles or providing free facilities to remain in power.

Body:

  • Political parties promise to offer free electricity/water supply, monthly allowance to unemployed, daily wage workers and women as well as gadgets like laptops, smartphones etc. in order to secure the vote of the people.
  • The states have become habituated to giving freebies, be it in the form of loan waivers or free electricity, cycles, laptops, TV sets and so on.
  • Certain kinds of expenditure that are done under populist pressures or with elections in mind may be questionable.
  • But given that in the last 30 years there has been rising inequality, some kind of relief to the population in the form of subsidies may not be unjustified but actually necessary for the economy to continue on its growth path.
  • There are some examples which show that some expenditure outlays do have overall benefits such as the Public Distribution System, employment guarantee schemes, support to education and enhanced outlays for health, particularly during the pandemic.
  • States like Tamil Nadu and Bihar are known for giving women sewing machines, saris and cycles, but they buy these from budget revenues, contributing to the sales of these industries.
  • Freebies undercut the basic framework of macroeconomic stability, the politics of freebies distorts expenditure priorities and outlays remain concentrated on subsidies of one kind or the other.
  • Impact on States’ Fiscal Situation: Offering freebies, ultimately, has an impact on the public exchequer and most of the states of India do not have a robust financial health and often have very limited resources in terms of revenue.
  • The promise of irrational freebies from public funds before elections unduly influences the voters, disturbs the level playing field and vitiates the purity of the poll process.

Conclusion:

  • It is not about how cheap the freebies are but how expensive they are for the economy, life quality and social cohesion in the long run.
  • The judicious and sensible offering of freebies or subsidies that can be easily accommodated in the states’ budget do not do much harm and can be leveraged.

Q) Gender equality or parity will happen only when there is a change in mindset and institutions consider women as assets rather than simply a diversity rectification issue. Explain (150 words)

लैंगिक समानता या समानता तभी होगी जब मानसिकता में बदलाव होगा और संस्थाएं महिलाओं को केवल विविधता सुधार के मुद्दे के बजाय संपत्ति के रूप में मानती हैं। समझाएं (150 शब्द)

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