Daily Prelims Notes 17 July 2022
- July 17, 2022
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN
Daily Prelims Notes
17 July 2022
Table Of Contents
- Eleven districts of Bengal reported at least 65 cases of black fever or ‘Kala-Azar disease in the last couple of weeks
- Centre intervening to cushion Re slide, boost dollar inflows
- What will be the impact of euro-dollar parity?
- Vice-President: The post, the provisions, and the past
- The intellectual troika that helped understand heredity
- Fourteen years after split, Jamiat factions likely to merge
- Incheon Declaration
- China’s Xi Jinping makes rare visit to Xinjiang
- Nord Stream 1 pipeline shuts down amid German suspicion of Russia
Subject : Science and Technology
Section : Disease
Concept :Kala-azar or Visceral Leishmaniasis is a protozoan parasitic disease, spread by sandfly bites. Sandflies are brown in colour and have hairs on their bodies. The flies are infected with the parasite called ‘leishmania donovani’.
- Kala-azar or visceral leishmaniasis (VL) is a tropical disease characterised by irregular fever, weight loss, anaemia and swelling of the spleen and liver.
- It is caused by a protozoan Leishmania parasite and is transmitted to humans by the bite of infected female sandflies. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), globally, about 7 to 10 lakh new cases occur annually.
Three types of leishmaniasis: According to the WHO, there are 3 main forms of leishmaniases of which kala-azar is the most serious form.
- Visceral leishmaniasis, which affects multiple organs and is the most serious form of the disease.
- Cutaneous leishmaniasis, which causes skin sores and is the most common form.
- Mucocutaneous leishmaniasis, which causes skin and mucosal lesions.
- Visceral leishmaniasis, which is commonly known as Kala-azar in India, is fatal in over 95% of the cases, if left untreated.
Where has kala-azar been detected in India?
- Uttar Pradesh
- West Bengal: Darjeeling, Malda, Uttar Dinajpur, Dakshin Dinajpur and Kalimpong.
The disease is endemic in Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. An estimated 165.4 million people are at risk, according to data from the National Centre for Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NCVBDC). In the country as a whole, there has been a significant decline in cases over the years. In 2014, around 9,200 cases were reported while in 2021 the number fell to 1,276 cases.
- The vector sandfly is known to live in cracks and crevices of muddy houses, especially in dark and humid corners.
- The disease affects some of the poorest people and is linked to malnutrition, population displacement, poor housing, a weak immune system and a lack of financial resources. Leishmaniasis is also linked to environmental changes such as deforestation, and urbanisation, according to WHO.
- In 2020, more than 90 per cent of new cases reported to WHO occurred in 10 countries: Brazil, China, Ethiopia, Eritrea, India, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Yemen.
Irregular bouts of fever over many days, weight loss, enlargement of the spleen and liver, and anaemia are known symptoms. The skin may become dry, thin and scaly in patches and hair may be lost. In people with a light skin tone, greyish discolouration of the skin of hands, feet, abdomen and face may be seen, that is why the disease is also called “Black fever”, as per the NCVBDC.
Leishmaniasis is a treatable and curable disease, which requires an immunocompetent system and thus those having a weak immune system are prone to get severely affected. All patients diagnosed require prompt and complete treatment.
What does the treatment include?
- Anti-leishmanial medicines are available for treatment.
- Vector control is also recommended by the WHO, which means reducing or interrupting the transmission of disease by decreasing the number of sandflies in surroundings through insecticide spray, use of insecticide-treated nets, etc.
- The government aimed to eliminate the disease in India by 2015, but that deadline was missed. However, the number of cases has been brought down significantly through the National Kala-Azar Elimination Programme.In the past , India has missed the 2017 deadline
- Elimination is defined as reducing the annual incidence of Kala Azar (KA) to less than 1 case per 10,000 people at the sub-district level
- Medicines, insecticides and technical support were given by the central government, while state governments provided for costs involved in implementation. The program was implemented through State/District Malaria Control Offices and the primary health care system.
Section: External Sector
- The US dollar has strengthened not only against the Indian rupee but against many other major currencies, an official said, adding that this year the rupee has strengthened against the Euro, the Japanese yen and the British pound.
- Reserve Bank have been taking steps to attract dollar inflows and make the dollar appreciation against the rupee more gradual and smoother.
Major reason for Rupee Slide
- Capital outflows by foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) as the US Federal Reserve started the monetary policy tightening and interest rate hikes.
- increase in inflation rate in the US and developed countries led to their central banks responding by raising interest rates (the monetary policy tightening)
- The Ukraine war raised the oil prices and uncertainty. On account of both these reasons, investors turned cautious. When they become cautious, they begin pulling money out of emerging markets like India. Foreign investors have pulled out nearly $31.5bn total from the beginning of FY22 and up to July 15 in 2022-23.
- The rise in the price of oil has pushed up India’s import bill this year, which also implied more demand for US dollars to pay for crude oil.
- Due to rise in oil prices Inflation also increased in India thus creating more Rupee in comparison to Dollar lead to Re depreciation
RBI has taken the following measures to boost FOREX.
- There is a limit on how much corporates can borrow (External Commercial Borrowing) from abroad annually. This limit has been doubled to $1.5 Billion. Actually when Indian companies borrow from abroad in foreign currency or dollars then they convert this dollar into rupee in our forex market. They sell dollars and purchase rupees, so that they can invest in India. This increases the demand of rupee and rupee appreciates.
- RBI regulates (puts ceiling limits) interest rates on NRI deposits in India. (FCNR and NRE accounts). This limit has been removed temporarily to attract more NRI deposits.
- Banks have been exempted from maintaining CRR and SLR on new/additional NRI So, banks will try to attract more NRI deposits and they will be able to offer some higher interest rates to NRIs because banks cost of funds will get reduced as they don’t need to keep CRR & SLR.
- Under ‘Fully Accessible Route (FAR)’, RBI has removed any cap/limit on FPIs debt investment in Government Securities. But this was not available for all types/tenures of Govt. securities. So, now this has been widened to several types of Govt. securities.
Section: External Sector
- It means one dollar could buy one euro in the foreign exchange market. For over two decades, it took more than one U.S. dollar to purchase one euro. Just a year ago it took about 1.2 U.S. dollars to purchase one euro.
- What determines a currency’s exchange rate?
- The price of any currency in a market economy is determined by supply and demand.
- The supply of a country’s currency in the foreign exchange market is determined by various factors such as central bank policy and the local demand for imports and foreign assets.
- The demand for a country’s currency, on the other hand, is determined by factors such as central bank policy and the foreign demand for exports and domestic assets.
- Why has the euro fallen against the U.S. dollar?
- Analysts believe that the divergence in the monetary policies of the U.S. Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank is the primary reason behind the euro’s significant depreciation against the U.S. dollar.
- In response to the economic crisis caused by lockdowns imposed to fight the coronavirus pandemic, both the Federal Reserve and the ECB expanded their balance sheets to boost spending.
- But this soon led to a rise in prices. Inflation in the U.S. hit a four-decade high of 9.1% in June while inflation in the Eurozone reached its highest-ever level of 8.6% during the same month.
- The U.S. Federal Reserve responded to the rising prices by raising the interest rates this year in order to slow down U.S. money supply growth.
- The ECB, however, has been far less aggressive in tightening policy even though the inflation rate is as high as 22% in some European countries.
- This has caused the value of the euro to slide against the dollar as currency traders witness, or at least expect, the supply of euros in the market rising relative to the supply of dollars.
- The value of euro has been affected by the uncertainty in energy supplies in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the ensuing actions against Russia. Europe now has to shell out more euros to import limited energy supplies, which in turn has adversely affected the value of the euro against the U.S. dollar.
Elections for Vice-President are scheduled for August 6, with the last date for filing nominations July 19.
- The office of the Vice-president is a unique feature of India, which follows a parliamentary system, and has no exact parallel in other democratic countries, including the Commonwealth.
- The second-highest constitutional authority after the President, the Vice-President draws his or her powers from Article 63 of the Constitution, which states that “there shall be a Vice-President of India”. Article 64 goes on to confer upon the post the power to be “ex-officio Chairman of the Council of States (the Rajya Sabha)”.
- In effect, the Vice-President discharges duties of both the Vice-President and Rajya Sabha chairperson.
- Additionally, the Vice-President can act as the President, “in the event of the occurrence of any vacancy in the office of the President by reason of his death, resignation or removal”, or “until the date on which a new President…enters upon his office”, as per Article 65.
- Under Article 64 (2), the Vice-President also discharges presidential functions when the President is unable to do so “owing to absence, illness or any other cause”. In this case, the Vice-President will “have all the powers and immunities of the President and be entitled to… (the) emoluments, allowances and privileges”.
The Election Procedure
- Any citizen of India who is at least 35 years of age and a registered voter in a state or Union Territory can be a candidate for the post. At least 20 MPs need to propose the nomination and 20 other MPs need to second it.
- As per Article 66 (2), the Vice-President cannot be a member of either House of Parliament or of the Legislature of any state.
- While the President is chosen by an electoral college consisting members of both the Houses of Parliament (MPs) and the legislators of all the state Assemblies (MLAs), the Vice-President is picked only by the MPs(both elected and nominated) through a system of proportional representation by means of a single transferable vote. The voting is through a secret ballot.
- Article 67 says that the Vice-President will hold office for a term of five years from “the date on which he enters upon his office”. However, according to the same provision, the Vice-President can continue to hold power “notwithstanding the expiration of his term” until his “successor enters upon his office”.
- The Vice-President may leave mid-term by submitting a resignation letter to the President, and can also be removed from office by a resolution in the Rajya Sabha, passed by a majority of its members at that time and agreed by the House of the People (Lok Sabha).
Provision for if the post falls vacant
- There is no direct provision in the Constitution on who performs the duties of the Vice-President if the office falls vacant before the expiry of his/her term or when the Vice-President is discharging the duties of the President.
- However, the Constitution does have a provision on what happens if the chairperson of the Council of States falls vacant: the Deputy Chairman or any other member of the Rajya Sabha authorised by the President can perform the chairperson’s duties.
Vice-Presidents who became Presidents
- S Radhakrishnan, the first Vice-President, served two terms in office, 1952-62. He was subsequently elected as the President in 1962. Other Vice-Presidents who went on to become presidents were Zakir Hussain (1967-69), V V Giri (69-74), R Venkataraman (87-92), Shankar Dayal Sharma (92-97) and K R Narayanan (97-2002).
- After Radhakrishnan, Hamid Ansari — who held the post from 2007 to 2017 – remains the only Vice-President to have got a second term in office.
What is the Election Procedure?
- As per Article 68 of the Constitution, the election to fill the vacancy caused by the expiration of the term of office of the outgoing vice-president is required to be completed before the expiration of the term.
- Article 324 of the Constitution read with the Presidential and Vice-Presidential Elections Act, 1952 and the Presidential and Vice-Presidential Elections Rules, 1974, vests the superintendence, direction and control of the conduct of election to the office of the Vice-President of India in the Election Commission of India.
Subject: Science and Technology
- Mendel propounded that information on “traits” gets passed on from one generation to another as particulate ‘elements’ and traits in the present generation can be traced back to past generations.
- Galton and his supporters — notably Karl Pearson and W.F.R. Weldon — criticised Mendel because his ‘laws’ ignored ancestors; the genetic compositions of only the parents but not of other ancestors, matter in the determination of the characteristics of a person.
- Galtonian ‘law’ stated that other ancestors also matter.
- Pearson claimed that observed correlations of characteristics between various types of relatives were higher than those expected under Mendel’s laws.
Mendel’s Law of inheritance
The three laws of inheritance proposed by Mendel include:
- Law of Dominance
- This is also called Mendel’s first law of inheritance. According to the law of dominance, hybrid offspring will only inherit the dominant trait in the phenotype. The alleles that are suppressed are called the recessive traits while the alleles that determine the trait are known as the dominant traits
- Law of Segregation
- The law of segregation states that during the production of gametes, two copies of each hereditary factor segregate so that offspring acquire one factor from each parent. In other words, allele (alternative form of the gene) pairs segregate during the formation of gamete and re-unite randomly during fertilization. This is also known as Mendel’s third law of inheritance.
- Law of Independent Assortment
- Also known as Mendel’s second law of inheritance, the law of independent assortment states that a pair of traits segregates independently of another pair during gamete formation. As the individual heredity factors assort independently, different traits get equal opportunity to occur together.
Section: Modern India
Context: first step towards reconciliation came after the rival camp extended him an invitation to attend its general body meeting in Deoband on May 28
The Deoband School
- The orthodox section among the Muslim ulema organised the Deoband Moovement. It was a revivalist movement
- The Deoband Movement was begun at the Darul Uloom (or Islamic academic centre), Deoband, in Saharanpur district (United Provinces) in 1866 by Mohammad Qasim Nanotavi and Rashid Ahmed Gangohi to train religious leaders for the Muslim community.
- On the political front, the Deoband school welcomed the formation of the Indian National Congress and in 1888 issued a fatwa (religious decree) against Syed Ahmed Khan’s organisations, the United Patriotic Association and the Mohammedan Anglo-Oriental Association.
- To propagate among the Muslims the pure teachings of the Koran and the Hadis
- To keep alive the spirit of jihad against the foreign rulers .
- The new Deoband leader Mahmud-ul-Hasan (1851-1920) sought to impart a political and intellectual content to the religious ideas of the school.
- The liberal interpretation of Islam created a political awakening among its followers.
- The Jamiat-ul-Ulema gave a concrete shape to Hasan’s ideas of protection of the religious and political rights of the Muslims in the overall context of Indian unity and national objectives.
Subject : History
Section: Art and Culture
- Villagers across Uttarakhand celebrated Harela, a festival of greenery, peace, prosperity and environmental conservation
- Harela means ‘day of green’ and is celebrated in the month of Shravan (the fifth month of the Hindu lunar calendar) to worship Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati.
- People across Uttarakhand, especially the Kumaun region, associate greenery with prosperity.
- The seeds of five to seven types of crops — maize, til (sesame), urad(black gram), mustard, oats — are sown in donas (bowl made of leaves) or ringalare (hill bamboo baskets) nine days before the festival.
- They are harvested on the ninth day and distributed to neighbours, friends and relatives.
- The flourish of the crops symbolises prosperity in the year ahead.
- People make clay statues of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, known as Dikare, and worship them a day before the festival.
- Locals of Garhwal said Harela is also linked to the Barahnaza system (12 types of crops), a crop diversification technique followed in the region.
- On the day of the festival the locals sing the in kumaoni language.
Subject :International Relations
Section: International Convention
- The Incheon Declaration was adopted on 21 May 2015 at the World Education Forum (WEF 2015) held in Incheon, Republic of Korea. The Incheon Declaration constitutes the commitment of the education community to Education 2030 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, recognizing the important role of education as a main driver of development.
- The Incheon Declaration builds on the global Education for All (EFA) movement that was initiated in Jomtien, Thailand in 1990 and reiterated in Dakar, Senegal in 2000.
Subject : Geography
- Xinjiang lies in the north-west of China and is the country’s largest region.
- Like Tibet, it is autonomous, meaning – in theory – it has some powers of self-governance.
- But in practice, both regions are subjected to major restrictions by the central government.
- Xinjiang is a mostly desert region and produces about a fifth of the world’s cotton.
- In December 2020, research seen by the BBC showed that up to half a million people were being forced to pick cotton in Xinjiang. There is evidence that new factories have been built within the grounds of the re-education camps.
- The region is also rich in oil and natural gas and because of its proximity to Central Asia and Europe is seen by Beijing as an important trade link.
- In the early 20th Century, the Uyghurs briefly declared independence for the region but it was brought under the complete control of China’s new Communist government in 1949.
- The Uighurs are Muslim ethnic community which speak a language close to Turkish, and are culturally and ethnically closer to Central Asia than the rest of China live in Xinjiang, the largest and most western of China’s administrative regions.
- Till recently, they were the majority in Xinjiang, but massive registered and unregistered settlements of Han Chinese and heavy troop deployments have likely changed that situation.
- Besides ethnicity and cultural dissonance, tensions are seen as rooted also in economic factors — as China’s development has lifted cities like Kashgar and Urumqi, young, qualified Han Chinese from eastern regions have come to Xinjiang, taking the most lucrative jobs and triggering resentment among the indigenous population.
- In Beijing’s official narrative, much of the Uighur terrorist violence is carried out by the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, a group that seeks to establish an independent East Turkestan state in China.
- China has been criticized at different forums for violation of Human rights of Uighur population.
Subject : International relations
- Owned by the Russian energy giant, Gazprom, Nord Stream the longest subsea pipeline, is an export gas pipeline which runs under the Baltic Sea carrying gas from Russia to Europe.
- The gas for Nord Steam comes mainly from the Bovanenkovo oil and gas condensate deposit in Western Siberia.
- The pipeline’s significance comes from the fact that it bypasses transit countries, making it highly reliable for European customers.
What is the Nord Stream Pipeline?
- Nordstream consists of two pipelines, which have two lines each.
- Nord Stream 1 was completed in 2011 and runs from Vyborg in Leningrad to Lubmin near Greifswald, Germany.
- Nord Stream 2 which runs from Ust-Luga in Leningrad to Lubmin was completed in September 2021 and has the capacity to handle 55 billion cubic meters of gas per year once it becomes operational.
- The twin pipelines together can transport a combined total of 110 billion cubic metres (bcm) of gas a year to Europe for at least 50 years.
- The Nord Stream crosses the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) of several countries including Russia, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Germany, and the territorial waters of Russia, Denmark, and Germany.
- In Germany, the pipeline connects to the OPAL (Baltic Sea Pipeline) and NEL (North European Pipeline) which further connects to the European grid.
- Poorna, Ambika, and Kaveri :Rivers of Gujrat flooded because of rains
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