Daily Prelims Notes 1 June 2021
- June 1, 2021
- Posted by: admin1
- Category: DPN
Daily Prelims Notes
1 June 2021
Table Of Contents
- CORE INDUSTRIES OUTPUT FALL
- INDIA’s GDP FALL
- WHO ASSIGNS NON-STIGMATISING LABELS TO COVID VARIANTS
- EARTHQUAKE ZONES OF INDIA
- DRUGS AND COSMETICS ACT
- MARATHAS UNDER EWS QUOTA
- FIRST NANO LIQUID UREA BY IFFCO
- LITORIA MIRA
- WTO TRADE DISTORTING AND PEACE CLAUSE
- INDIA’S EFFORT TO FIND A SOLUTION IN WTO FACES CHALLENGE
- EIGHTH GLOBAL NITROGEN CONFERENCE FOCUSES ON SDG’S
- CRAFTSMAN TRAINING SCHEME
- NAGALAND BAMBOO FINDS HOME IN KERALA
- THOUSANDS OF ROHINGYA PROTEST AT BHASHAN CHAR ISLANDS
- HORTICULTURE CLUSTER DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME (CDP)
Context : The output of eight core industries grew 56.1 per cent year-on-year (YoY) in April 2021 on a low-base effect as industrial production was very low in the year-ago month because of a nationwide lockdown.
- However, the industrial output declined 15.1 per cent as compared to March 2021 due to the emergence of second wave of COVID-19 pandemic, with all eight industries registering a decline in output.
- The combined ICI stood at 126.7 in April 2021, which increased by 56.1 per cent (provisional) as compared to the Index of April 2020. This high growth rate in April 2021 is largely due to low Index base in April 2020 consequent to the low industrial production across all sectors caused by nationwide lockdown imposed to contain spread of Covid-19 last year.
- The growth rate of ICI during April-March 2020-21was (-)6.5% (P) as compared to the corresponding period of last FY.
- The base effect refers to the impact of the rise in price level (i.e. last year’s inflation) in the previous year over the corresponding rise in price levels in the current year (i.e., current inflation)
- If the price index had risen at a high rate in the corresponding period of the previous year leading to a high inflation rate, some of the potential rise is already factored in, therefore a similar absolute increase in the Price index in the current year will lead to a relatively lower inflation rates.
- If inflation in June 2016 was 8% and absolute increase in Price index in June 2017 was say 9%, then, inflation in June 2017 will be low i.e. 1%
- On the other hand, if the inflation rate was too low in the corresponding period of the previous year, even a relatively smaller rise in the Price Index will arithmetically give a high rate of current inflation.
- If inflation in June 2016 was 1% and absolute increase in Price index in June 2017 was say 4%, then, inflation in June 2017 will be low i.e. 3%.
- Core industry can be defined as the main industry which has a multiplier effect on the economy.
- In most countries, there is particular industry that seems to be backbone of all other industries and it qualifies to be the core industry.
- The Eight Core Industries comprise 40.27% of the weight of items included in the Index of Industrial Production (IIP).
- The eight Core Industries in decreasing order of their weightage: Refinery Products> Electricity> Steel> Coal> Crude Oil> Natural Gas> Cement>Fertilizers. The eight Core Industries in decreasing order of their weightage: Refinery Products> Electricity> Steel> Coal> Crude Oil> Natural Gas> Cement> Fertilizers.
Context: India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) contracted by 7.3% in 2020-21, as per provisional National Income estimates released by the National Statistical Office. GDP growth in 2019-20, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, was 4%.
- The Gross Value Added (GVA) in the economy shrank 6.2% in 2020-21, compared to a 4.1% rise in the previous year.
- Only two sectors bucked the trend of negative GVA growth — agriculture, forestry and fishing, which rose 3.6%, and electricity, gas, water supply and other utility services (up 1.9%).
- GVA for trade, hotels, transport, communication and broadcasting-related services saw the sharpest decline of 18.2%, followed by construction (-8.6%), mining and quarrying (-8.5%) and manufacturing (-7.2%).
- Though this is the bleakest performance on record for the economy, the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2020-21 helped moderate the damage, with a higher-than-expected growth of 1.6% in GDP.
- This marked the second quarter of positive growth after the country entered a technical recession in the first half of the year.
- GDP had contracted 24.4% in April-June 2020, followed by a 7.4% shrinkage in the second quarter. It had returned to positive territory in the September to December quarter with a marginal 0.5% growth.
Subject: International Relations / Science & tech
Context: WHO has assigned simple, easy to say and remember labels for key variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, using letters of the Greek alphabet.
- These labels were chosen after wide consultation and a review of many potential naming systems.
- WHO convened an expert group of partners from around the world to do so, including experts who are part of existing naming systems, nomenclature and virus taxonomic experts, researchers and national authorities.
- WHO will assign labels for those variants that are designated as Variants of Interest or Variants of Concern by WHO. These will be posted on the WHO website.
- These labels do not replace existing scientific names (e.g. those assigned by GISAID, Nextstrain and Pango), which convey important scientific information and will continue to be used in research.
Context: Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said the construction of a new Parliament is important because the old building was constructed a hundred years ago by the British and was not constructed for “an independent country”. It is important because it is in Seismic Zone 2, and if there are strong tremors, it will come under Seismic Zone 4.
Seismic Zones in India
- There are four seismic zones (II, III, IV, and V) in India based on scientific inputs relating to seismicity, earthquakes occurred in the past and tectonic setup of the region.
- Previously, earthquake zones were divided into five zones with respect to the severity of the earthquakes but the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) grouped the country into four seismic zones by unifying the first two zones.
- BIS is the official agency for publishing the seismic hazard maps and codes.
- Seismic Zone II: Area with minor damage earthquakes corresponding to intensities V to VI of MM scale (MM-Modified Mercalli Intensity scale).
- Seismic Zone III: Moderate damage corresponding to intensity VII of MM scale.
- Seismic Zone IV: Major damage corresponding to intensity VII and higher of MM scale.
- Seismic Zone V: Area determined by pro seismically of certain major fault systems and is seismically the most active region.
- Earthquake zone V is the most vulnerable to earthquakes, where historically some of the country’s most powerful shocks have occurred.
- Earthquakes with magnitudes in excess of 7.0 have occurred in these areas, and have had intensities higher than IX.
Seismic Waves, Richter Scale and Mercalli scale
- Seismic waves are the vibrations from earthquakes that travel through the Earth and are recorded on instruments called seismographs.
- Seismographs record a zigzag trace that shows the varying amplitude of ground oscillations beneath the instrument.
- The earthquake events are scaled either according to the magnitude or intensity of the shock.
- The magnitude scale is known as the Richter scale. The magnitude relates to the energy released during the earthquake which is expressed in absolute numbers, 0-10.
- The intensity scale or Mercalli scale takes into account the visible damage caused by the event. The range of intensity scale is from 1-12.
Subject: National Legislations
Context: Delhi High Court on Monday pulled up the Drug Controller Department of Delhi for not properly examining how BJP MP Gautam Gambhir procured a huge quantity of COVID-19 medicines.
- The Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 is an act of the Parliament of India which regulates the import, manufacture and distribution of drugs in India.
- The primary objective of the act is to ensure that the drugs and cosmetics sold in India are safe, effective and conform to state quality standards
DRUGS AND COSMETICS RULES, 1945
- The Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945 are the set of rules under The Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940.
- It contains provisions for the classification of drugs under given schedules.
- It also contains the guidelines of drugs for their storage, sale, display, and prescription of each schedule.
CENTRAL DRUGS STANDARD CONTROL ORGANIZATION (CDSCO)
- CDSCO is the National Regulatory Authority (NRA) of India.
- Its headquarter is in Delhi.
- The Drugs & Cosmetics Act, 1940 and rules 1945 have entrusted various responsibilities to central & state regulators for the regulation of drugs & cosmetics.
- It envisages the uniform implementation of the Act & Rules for ensuring the safety, rights and wellbeing of the patients.
Under this act, CDSCO is responsible for:
- Approval of Drugs
- Conduct of Clinical Trials
- Laying down the standards for Drugs
- Control over the quality of imported Drugs in the country
- Coordination of the activities of State Drug Control Organizations
- Bring out the uniformity in the enforcement of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act.
Subject: Social Issue
Context: After setback in SC ,Maharashtra government extends EWS Quota to Marathas.
- In a bid to extend relief to the Maratha community in the State, the tripartite MahaVikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra extended the benefits of reservation for the Economically Weaker Section (EWS) to the Socially and Economically Backward Class (SEBC).
- Previously, the government had decided that the Maratha community could not take advantage of the 10% EWS category as Maratha reservation was in force in the State.
- The Supreme Court, however, scrapped the SEBC reservation in jobs and education, making it possible for the State government to extend the benefit of the EWS quota to the Marathas.
- As per the government resolution, a person fulfilling the criterion for EWS would be eligible for 10% reservation in educational institutes, barring minority institutes.
- This would also be applied for State government recruitment. The resolution said the reservation would be above the existing reservation.
- It also stated that the benefit would be available from September 9, 2020, when the apex court brought an interim stay on the reservation, to May 5, 2021, when the final verdict was announced.
Context: In a statement, IFFCO said the “World’s 1st Nano Urea Liquid” was unveiled during its 50th annual general body meeting.
- FFCO Nano Urea Liquid is developed to replace conventional urea and it can curtail the requirement of the same by at least 50%.
- It contains 40,000 ppm of nitrogen in a 500 ml bottle which is equivalent to the impact of nitrogen nutrient provided by one bag of conventional urea.
- The Nano Urea Liquid, developed by IFFCO’s scientists and engineers, will be available in 500 ml bottles.
- IFFCO has priced Nano Urea at Rs 240 per 500 ml bottle for the farmers, which is 10% cheaper than the cost of a bag of conventional Urea.
Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Limited (IFFCO)
- IFFCO is large scale fertiliser cooperative federation in India which is registered as Multistate Cooperative Society.
- It is one of India’s biggest cooperative society which is wholly owned by Indian Cooperatives.
- It was founded in 1967 with just 57 cooperatives and at present it has amalgamation of over 36,000 Indian Cooperatives with diversified business interests ranging from General Insurance to Rural Telecom apart from its core business of manufacturing and selling fertilisers.
- It is headquartered in New Delhi.
Context: Recently, a team of Australian scientists has discovered a curious “chocolate frog” tree frog i.e. Litoria Mira in the lowland rainforests of New Guinea.
About Litoria Mira
- It is a species of frog lives in the rainforests of New Guinea that appears to be made from chocolate.
- It is inspired by the Latin adjective mirum, which means surprised or strange.
- It stems from the scientist’s surprise in discovering an undescribed member of the predominately Australian Litoria genus of tree frogs.
- It has a well-known relative i.e. the common green tree frog of Australia called Litoria cerulean.
- It can be distinguished from all other Litoria by its unique combination of moderately large size, webbing on hand, relatively short and robust limbs, and small violet patch of skin on the edge of its eyes.
- The reason that the chocolate frog from New Guinea and the Australian green tree frog are similar is that Australia and New Guinea used to be linked by land for much of the late Tertiary period.
- It was discovered in one of the world’s most unpleasant places for humans i.e. a hot rainforest swamp infested with malarial mosquitoes, spiky trees and crocodiles and without roads.
Subject: International Relations
Context: India has invoked the peace clause of the World Trade Organization for exceeding the ceiling on support it can offer farmers for rice for the marketing year 2018-2019, marking the first time any country has taken recourse to this safeguard.
- India informed the WTO that the value of its rice production was $43.67 billion in 2018-19 and that it gave subsidies worth $5 billion. The limit is pegged at 10% of the value of food production in the case of India and other developing countries.
Peace Clause under Bali Agreement
- The peace clause protects a developing country’s food procurement programmes against action from WTO members in case subsidy ceilings are breached.
- As per the original Agreement on agriculture (AoA), the developed and developing countries have to keep their Amber box subsidies within De-minimus level i.e. 5% and 10% of their agriculture production in 1986-88 respectively.
- India opposed this base year and limits, because it’d make impossible to implement the food security programs for the poor and MSP for the farmers.
- Therefore, as a measure of temporary relief, Bali summit enacted a “peace clause” for the AoA
Salient features of Peace Clause
- No member, can drag any developing country to Dispute settlement mechanism of WTO.
For violation of De-minimus limits in AoA
Provided that the said developing country is paying subsidies for staple foodcrops for public stockholding program for food security purpose.
Is providing annual information of its food security Program to WTO.
- Permanent solution will be taken no later than 11th ministerial conference i.e. at December 2017.
Subject: International Relations
Context: The EU and Cairns group opposed the standalone solution pushed by india and other members of G 33 grouping.
- The G33 (or the Friends of Special Products in agriculture) is a coalition of developing countries, established prior to the 2003 Cancun ministerial conference, that have coordinated during the Doha Round of World Trade Organization negotiations, specifically in regard to agriculture.
- Dominated by India, the group has “defensive” concerns regarding agriculture in relation to World Trade Organization negotiations, and seeks to limit the degree of market opening required of developing countries.
- When rich governments can afford to heavily subsidize their agriculture, predatory dumping can undermine a poorer country’s agricultural economy.
- Developing countries aim to balance power through tariffs, in order to manage their own food security, stabilize of the livelihoods of their farming populations, and strengthen rural development.
- The group has advocated the creation of a “special products” exemption, which would allow developing countries to exempt certain products from tariff reductions, and also a “special safeguard mechanism” which would permit tariff increases in response to import surges.
Subject: International Relations
Context: The United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the main focus of the eighth triennial conference of the International Nitrogen Initiative (INI) being held virtually from May 31-June 3, 2021.
- The International Nitrogen Initiative (INI) is an international program, set up in 2003 under sponsorship of the Scientific Committee on Problems of the Environment (SCOPE) and from the International Geosphere-Biosphere Program (IGBP).
The key aims of the INI are to:
- Optimize nitrogen’s beneficial role in sustainable food production, and
- Minimize nitrogen’s negative effects on human health and the environment resulting from food and energy production.
- The program is currently a sustained partner of Future Earth.
- The INI holds a conference every three years, inviting members of the international nitrogen community to meet up and discuss ideas and exchange knowledge on nitrogen issues. The last INI conference was held in Melbourne, in December 2016.
Subject: Government Schemes
Context: The Directorate General of Training (DGT) announced results of the All India Trade Test (AITT) held in December 2020, for Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS) Academic session 2020-2021.
- The Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS) was introduced by the Government of India in year 1950 by establishing about 50 Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) for imparting skills in various vocational trades
- It is implemented by the Directorate General of Training (DGT), under the aegis of Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship.
- It’s objective is to ensure a steady flow of skilled workers in different trades for the domestic industry.
- Vocational Training is a concurrent subject of both Central and State Governments.
- The development of training schemes at National level, evolution of policy, laying of training standards, norms, conducting of examinations, certification, etc. are the responsibilities of the Central Government, whereas the implementation of the training schemes largely rests with the State Govts./UT Administrators.
Context: A rare bamboo from Nagaland in northeast India has found a second home in picturesque Wagamon in Idukki district of Kerala, courtesy a conservation programme of the Jawaharlal Nehru Tropical Botanic Garden and Research Institute (JNTBGRI).
- In its efforts to conserve the species, JNTBGRI has also heeded the United Nations call for ecosystem restoration, he said.
- JNTBGRI has plans to propagate the bamboo species in Kerala, given its soil-binding abilities.
- Chimonobambusacallosa, an eastern Himalayan hill bamboo, can grow to a height of five to 10 metres
- A long-rhizomed spreading bamboo, Chimonobambusacallosa is ideal for soil protection.
- Characterised by straight, green culms, with rings of thorns adorning the nodes, the bamboo also has ornamental value, according to the botanic garden.
Context: Several thousand Rohingya refugees have staged “unruly” protests against living conditions on a cyclone-prone island off Bangladesh where they were moved from vast camps on the mainland, police said.
- The island is also known as Thengar Char Island.
- Bhashan Char Island was formed about two decades ago on the mouth of river Meghna.
- The uninhabited island is located around 30 kilometres east of Hatiyaisland in South-East Bangladesh.
- Bangladesh wanted to move 100,000 Rohingya refugees to the muddy silt island to take the pressure off the overcrowded border camps.
- The Bhashan Char falls in an ecologically fragile area prone to floods, erosion and cyclone.
- Though the Bangladesh government has built a three-metre-high embankment along its perimeter to keep out tidal surges during cyclones.
Subject: Government Schemes
Context: To ensure holistic growth of horticulture, Union Minister of Agriculture launched the Horticulture Cluster Development Programme (CDP).
- In a pilot phase, the programme will be implemented in 12 horticulture clusters covering 11 States/UTs out of the total 53 clusters selected for the programme.
- It is a central sector programme.
- It will be implemented by the National Horticulture Board (NHB) of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare.
- The programme aims at growing and developing identified horticulture clusters to make them globally competitive.
- The programme will benefit about 10 lakh farmers and is expected to attract an investment of Rs. 10,000 crore when implemented in all the 53 clusters
- The programme will address all major issues related to the Indian horticulture sector including pre-production, production, post-harvest management, logistics, marketing and branding.