Daily Prelims Notes 10 February 2021
- February 10, 2021
- Posted by: admin1
- Category: DPN
Daily Prelims Notes
10 February 2021
All 6 Prelims qualified
4 CSE Mains qualified
If I can do it, you can too
Table Of Contents
- SEDITION LAW
- E COMMERCE REGULATIONS
- Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB)
- Private Members bill
- Ujjwala Scheme
- Election and Tenure of Rajya Sabha MP
- Kotia dispute
- Niti Valley and Niti Pass
- National Commission for Minorities, Act 1992
- Amal or HOPE/ Arab’s world first inter-planetary mission
Subject: National Legislations
Context: The Supreme Court on Tuesday protected Congress leader Shashi Tharoor and six senior journalists from arrest in multiple sedition FIRs registered against them for allegedly tweeting and sharing unverified news.
- Sedition, which falls under Section 124A of the Indian Penal Code, is defined as any action that brings or attempts to bring hatred or contempt towards the government of India and has been illegal in India since 1870.
Historical Background of Sedition Law:
- Sedition laws were enacted in 17th century England when lawmakers believed that only good opinions of the government should survive, as bad opinions were detrimental to the government and monarchy.
- This sentiment (and law) was borrowed and inserted into the Section 124A of IPC in 1870, by the British.
- British used Sedition law to convict and sentence freedom fighters. It was first used to prosecute Bal Gangadhar Tilak in 1897.
- Mahatama Gandhi, too, was later tried for sedition for his articles in Young India.
Supreme Court Observations
- In 1962, the Supreme Court decided on the constitutionality of Section 124A in KedarNath Singh v State of Bihar.
- It upheld the constitutionality of sedition, but limited its application to “acts involving intention or tendency to create disorder, or disturbance of law and order, or incitement to violence”.
- It distinguished these from “very strong speech” or the use of “vigorous words” strongly critical of the government.
- In 1995, the Supreme Court, in Balwant Singh v State of Punjab, held that mere sloganeering which evoked no public response did not amount to sedition.
Subject : National Legislations
Context: A subject expert committee of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) has given approval to Bharat Biotech to launch the first phase of clinical trial of an intranasal vaccine candidate for COVID-19.
Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO):
- The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) – under Directorate General of Health Services, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.
- It is the National Regulatory Authority (NRA) of India.
- CDSCO is the Central Drug Authority for discharging functions assigned to the Central Government under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act.
- It regulates the safety, efficacy and quality of notified medical devices under the provisions of Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940.
- Headquarters – New Delhi.
Major functions of CDSCO:
- Under the Drugs and Cosmetics 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 and
- Coordination of the activities of State drug control organizations.
Subject : Economy
Context: The Centre plans to issue a clarification on the foreign direct investment (FDI) policy for the e-commerce sector in the wake of investigations into some foreign players’ operations following complaints about malpractices, according to Commerce and Industry Minister PiyushGoyal.
- The government had sought information from the online marketplaces as part of a probe into ‘certain complaints from consumers and small retailers about certain practices of e-commerce companies’.
- Stressing that e-commerce platforms could only act as a service provider, the minister warned players ‘who break the law’ that they would have to correct their business practices at the earliest.
FDI guidelines for e-Commerce
- In India 100% FDI is permitted in B2B e-commerce, however, No FDI is permitted in B2C(Inventory based ) e-commerce.
- 100% FDI under automatic route is permitted in the marketplace model of e-commerce, while FDI is not permitted in inventory based model of e-commerce.
Marketplace and Inventory-Based Model
- Marketplace based model of e-commerce means providing an information technology platform by an e-commerce entity on a digital & electronic network to act as a facilitator between the buyer and seller.
- In a marketplace model, the e-commerce firm is not allowed to directly or indirectly influence the sale price of goods or services and is required to offer a level playing field to all vendors.
- Inventory based model of e-commerce means an e-commerce activity where the inventory of goods and services is owned by e-commerce entity and is sold to the consumers directly.
Subject : International Agreements
Context: India – EU Sumit is scheduled to take place this year may. This has increased the expectations about BTIA.
- In June 2007, India and the EU began negotiations on a broad-based Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) in Brussels, Belgium.
- These negotiations are pursuant to the commitment made by political leaders at the 7th India-EU Summit held in Helsinki on 13th October 2006 to move towards negotiations for a broad-based trade and investment agreement on the basis of the report of India-EU High Level Technical Group.
- India and the EU expect to promote bilateral trade by removing barriers to trade in goods and services and investment across all sectors of the economy.
- Both parties believe that a comprehensive and ambitious agreement that is consistent with WTO rules and principles would open new markets and would expand opportunities for Indian and EU businesses.
The negotiations cover:
- Trade in Goods, Trade in Services, Investment, Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures, Technical Barriers to Trade, Trade Remedies, Rules of Origin, Customs and Trade Facilitation, Competition, Trade Defence, Government Procurement, Dispute Settlement, Intellectual Property Rights & Geographical Indications, Sustainable Development.
What’s the issue?
- Negotiations have been languishing since 2013 when the talks collapsed over certain demands from the EU such as greater market access for automobiles, wine and spirits, and further opening up of the financial services sector such as banking, insurance and e-commerce.
- The EU also wanted labour, environment and government procurement to be included in the talks.
- India’s demand for easier work visa and study visa norms as well as data secure status, that would make it easier for European companies to outsource business to India, were also not received enthusiastically by the EU countries.
Subject: Current affairs
Context: NCPCR, NCB releases a joint action plan to combat drug and substance abuse among children
- The common drugs used by children and adolescents were tobacco and alcohol, followed by inhalants and cannabis
The action plan includes:
- Every police station should have a list of CCTV cameras installed in surrounding areas of the schools in their jurisdiction.
- Random checking of CCTV installed around schools and educational institutions to check drug and substance abuse by kids
- Chemists sell drugs under schedule H, H1, or X only by updating information in mobile app-based management information systems to ensure that underage kids do not get them without prescription and develop dependency
- Exclusive de-addiction and rehabilitation facilities be set up for children in 272 vulnerable districts by the ministry of social justice and empowerment
- Narcotics Control Bureau was constituted by the Government of India in 1986 under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985.
- It is the apex coordinating agency falling under the Ministry of Home Affairs.
- The NCB was part of a global operation ‘Operation Trance’ (2019), which is a joint intelligence-gathering action on international postal, express mail and courier shipments containing psychotropic drugs.
- The law was passed based on Article 47 of the Indian Constitution which directs the State to endeavor to bring about prohibition of the consumption, except for medicinal purposes, of intoxicating drugs injurious to health.
- The Act provides for a Fund to be called the National Fund for Control of Drug Abuse to meet the expenditure incurred in connection with the measures taken for combating illicit traffic in, or controlling abuse of, narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances
- Minimum term of rigorous imprisonment of 10 years, which may extend to 20 years for offenders, and also a fine which shall not be less than one lakh rupees but which may extend to two lakh rupees.
- The Act made an express provision for constituting a Central Authority for the purpose of exercising the powers and functions of the Central Government under the Act.
MPs have filed private member bills jointly and individually titled, Repealing and Amendment Bill 2021 for repeal of farm laws.
- It is a bill brought by the private members in any house.
- Private member is any Member of Parliament who is not a minister.
- The Chairman of the Rajya Sabha and Speaker of the Lok Sabha decides whether to admit the bill or not.
- The procedure of introduction of such bills needs a one-month notice. However, it is passed by same procedure as a public bill.
- The House secretariat examines it for compliance with constitutional provisions and rules on legislation before listing.
- Unlike the government bill (introduced by ministers), these bills are introduced and discussed only on Friday.
- It generally reflects the Opposition stand in Parliament.
- The drafting of bill is responsibility of members (in case of public bill it is done by the concerned department with consultation of the law department).
- The chances of passage of private member bill is less as the majority in the house may go against it and treasury bench in house perceive it as a sanction of the government.
- So far, only 14 such bills have been passed (none since 1970.)
Subject: Welfare schemes
Context: The retirement of J&K MPs saw praise for Ujjawala scheme in the J&K.
- Addition of 10 million beneficiaries during the year to the government’s flagship scheme was announced during the budget 2021-22.
- As on January 31, about 83 million LPG connections have been given under the scheme, which has helped the government increase the all-India LPG coverage to 99.5 per cent.
- The scheme is significant as its database is being used to promote DBT in other schemes as well.
- Under the Pradhan MantriGaribKalyan package during the pandemic, free LPG cylinders were given to all Ujjwala scheme beneficiaries for three months.
About Ujjwala scheme:
- It envisages the distribution of 50 million LPG connections to women below the poverty line and was launched in 2016, which was later increased to 8 crores by 2019 (Achieved).
- Under it a deposit-free LPG connection is given to eligible beneficiaries with financial assistance of Rs 1,600 per connection by the Centre.
- It is a scheme of Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas.
It aims at:
- Empowering women and protecting their health by reducing serious health hazards associated with cooking based on fossil fuel.
- Reducing the number of deaths in India due to unclean cooking fuel.
- Preventing young children from significant number of acute respiratory illnesses caused due to indoor air pollution by burning the fossil fuel.
Context: Some of the Rajya Sabha MPS retired from the house after completing their term yesterday.
- Article 80 of the Constitution lays down the maximum strength of Rajya Sabha as 250 and current strength is 245, out of which 12 members are nominated by the President and 238 are representatives of the States and of the two Union Territories.
- The Fourth Schedule to the Constitution provides for allocation of seats to the States and Union Territories in Rajya Sabha.
- The representatives of the States and of the Union Territories in the Rajya Sabha are elected by the method of indirect election by the elected members of the Legislative Assembly of that State and by the members of the Electoral College for that Union Territory, as the case may be, in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote.
- Rajya Sabha is a permanent House and is not subject to dissolution. However, one-third Members of Rajya Sabha retire after every second year. A member who is elected for a full term serves for a period of six years.
- A member elected in a bye-election remains member for the remainder of the term of the member who had resigned or died or disqualified to be member of the House under the Tenth Schedule.
Context: Odisha to move Supreme Court over Andhra bid to conduct polls in disputed region.
- Odisha and Andhra Pradesh are involved in dispute since 1960 over Kotia Gram Panchayat which involves 21 villages.
- The village currently receives benefits from blocks of both states.
- Odisha was formed after taking it out from the Bengal-Bihar province in 1936. Since then, they have outstanding border disputes with Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh (villages in Nabarangpur and Jharsuguda district), Jharkhand (Baitarni river floodplain) and West Bengal (pockets of Mayurbhanj and Balasore district).
- With Chhattisgarh it has river dispute and Mahanadi Water Dispute Tribunal was formed in 2018.
- It also has river disputes with the Andhra Pradesh over Vamsadhara river.
Context: There are many villages which has been cut-off due to recent flood in Uttarakhand
- The Uttarakhand flood has cut-off this and other remote villages.
- Niti Valley is one of northernmost region of the Uttarakhand. It is the las village in the valley before border meets with the South Tibet.
- Niti Pass is an ancient trade route between India and China which was closed post 1962 war.
- They are mostly inhabited by Bhotiyas or Chamoli’sMarchas, a community of Mongoloid origin.
- The adverse weather conditions make the area inhabitable only for 6 to 8 months leading to practice of transhumance in the region.
Context: The SC issued notice to the Centre for transfer of cases from several high courts to it against the Centre’s notification to declare five communities Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Parsee as minorities in states/UT even where they are in majority.
- In 2019 The Supreme Court has dismissed a plea seeking guidelines to “identify and define” religious minorities in every State to protect their culture and interests. This plea sought to declare Hindus as minority in states where they are low in population.
- Currently, linguistic minorities are determined by the state government, and the religious minorities are determined by the Centre.
- The term “minority” is not defined in the Indian Constitution. However, the Constitution recognizes religious and linguistic minorities.
Constitutional provisions for minorities:
- Art 15 and Art 16 talks of no discrimination on basis of religion and equality of opportunity.
- Art 25-28 talks of freedom of religion to all communities.
- Art 29 and Art 30 gives special educational and cultural rights to the linguistic and religious minorities.
- Art 350-B talks of Special Officer to investigate all matters relating to the safeguards provided for linguistic minorities under the Constitution.
About National Commission for Minorities Act:
- It was passed in 1992 with the purpose of safeguarding and protecting the interests of minorities as provided in the Constitution of India and laws enacted by the Parliament and the State Legislatures.
- The Union Government set up the National Commission for Minorities (NCM) under the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992.
- National Commission for Minorities consist of Chairperson, a Vice-Chairperson and five Members.
- The five Members including the Chairperson shall be from amongst the minority communities.
- The Act mentions an annual report, together with the memorandum of action taken on the recommendations contained therein, as well as the reasons for non-acceptance of the recommendations, if any, be tabled before Parliament annually.
- Initially five religious’ communities, viz., Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Zoroastrians (Parsis) were notified as minority communities by the Union Government. Further in 2014, Jains were also notified as another minority community.
- State Government constituted State Minorities Commissions in their respective State Capitals.
- Aggrieved persons belonging to the minority communities may approach the concerned State Minorities Commissions for redressal of their grievances.
- Moreover, they may also send their representations to the National Commission for Minorities, after exhausting all other official mechanism of remedies available to them.
Subject: Science and Technology
Context: Arab spacecraft enters orbit around Mars in historic flight after 7 months.
- Unmanned craft, called Amal, Arabic for Hope, had reached the end of its nearly seven-month, 300-million-mile journey and had begun circling the red planet.
- It is a Mars orbiter spacecraft of the United Arab Emirates which is Arab world’s first inter-planetary mission.
- The mission is officially named the Emirates Mars Mission (EMM) and the orbiter has been named Hope or ‘Al Amal’.
- The mission has a life of one Martian year (equivalent to 2 earth year).
- The mission aims to understand:
- Climate dynamics and global weather map of Mars by studying the lower atmosphere of Mars
- Weather of Mars affects the escape of hydrogen and oxygen, by correlating conditions in the lower and upper atmosphere
- The presence and variability of hydrogen and oxygen in the upper atmosphere, and why Mars is losing these gases to space.