Daily Prelims Notes 2 September 2022
- September 2, 2022
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN
Daily Prelims Notes
2 September 2022
Table Of Contents
- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday approved a loan of $2.9 billion to Sri Lanka.
- Financial Intelligence Unit – India (FIU-IND)
- The importance of September 2, Tibetan Democracy Day, for Tibetans in exile around the world
- UN report on Xinjiang
- Calling time on caretakers of J&K’s Sufi shrines
- Seven States cold to Centre’s crime portal
- Cervavac- India’s first indigenously developed vaccine for cervical cancer
- The landmark Mary Roy case in SC; which gave Syrian Christian women equal right to property
1. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday approved a loan of $2.9 billion to Sri Lanka.
Subject : Economy
Section : External Policy
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday approved a loan of $2.9 billion to Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka IMF bailout–What happens next?
- The agreement between Sri Lanka and the IMF is only preliminary, and has to be approved by the IMF management and its executive board.
- It will also go through only if Sri Lankan authorities carry out previously agreed measures.
How will the IMF funds help Sri Lanka?
- The funds will be disbursed over four years to help stabilise the economy and boost growth.
- The package will help raise government revenue to support fiscal consolidation, introduce new reforms, bolster central bank autonomy and rebuild depleted foreign reserves.
- IMF loan will boost the receiving country’s credit ratings, and the confidence of international creditors and investors
What’s the situation in Sri Lanka now?
- Sri Lanka owes more than $51 billion in foreign debt, of which $28 billion has to be repaid by 2028.
- According to the IMF, the country’s economy will shrink by 8.7 per cent in 2022 while inflation rises to above 60 per cent.
- The Sri Lankan Government proposed a budget aimed at– increasing government revenue to around 15 percent of the GDP by 2025, cutting down public sector debt, controlling inflation and increasing value added tax to 15 per cent from the current 12%, revising the country’s deficit projection for 2022 to 9.8 per cent of the gross domestic product from 8.8 percent earlier.
Causes of the crisis?
- Depletion of forex reserves– A heavily import-dependent nation is left with just $2-billion reserves, leaving Sri Lanka not able to import even essential commodities.
- Sri Lanka’s budget deficits were high during the civil war and the global financial crisis of 2008 drained its forex reserves
- Diminishing Inflow of Foreign Currency- The pandemic has affected all major sources of foreign exchange earnings like exports, worker remittances, etc.
- The collapse of the tourism industry-contributing nearly 10 percent of its GDP. The pandemic, coupled with the 2019 Easter bombings, led to a fall in the tourism revenues from $7.5 billion in 2019 to $2.8 billion last year.
- Agricultural Distress-blanket ban on chemical fertilisers by the administration last year and adoption of an “organic only” approach crippled the agriculture sector with tea cultivation and its exports, one of the mainstays of the economy, getting affected.
- Ukraine crisis-
- A significant portion of tourists who travel to Sri Lanka are from Russia and Ukraine.
- Sri Lanka exports its tea to these two nations and imports almost half of its wheat and sunflower oil from them.
- The war has caused oil prices to spike, exacerbating its forex crisis.
- China’s Debt Trap-Sri Lanka has borrowed heavily from Beijing since 2005 for infrastructure projects, many of which became White Elephants (no longer needed/ useful).
- Sri Lanka also leased its Hambantota port to a Chinese company in 2017 after it became unable to service the USD 1.4 billion debt from Beijing used to build it.
2. Financial Intelligence Unit – India (FIU-IND)
Section: Fiscal Policy
The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), a key unit of the multi-agency probe into the Pandora Papers, has received responses from its counterparts in over three-fourths of the requests it sent to 33 foreign jurisdictions.
- The information includes details of existing and additional foreign bank accounts; investments in shares by offshore entities; confirmation of the Beneficial Owners (BOs) and Settlors of Offshore Trusts, and investments in shares and immovable properties made by the individuals named in the Pandora Papers.
- The individuals include both Indian residents as well as Non Resident Indians (NRIs).
- The FIU has been dispatching the details in individual cases to the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to accelerate their Pandora Papers probes.
- Cooperation between FIUs in the Pandora Papers probe is being done under the aegis of the Egmond Group–an umbrella organisation that brings FIUs of 167 countries together with the aim of facilitating a secure exchange of financial intelligence to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.
- The CBDT is the lead agency in the Multi Agency Group (MAG) which was set up by the Government to probe the Pandora Papers on October 4, 2021, the day the global media expose was published.
- Besides the CBDT and the FIU, officials from the Enforcement Directorate and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) are members of the MAG and are present at every meeting to review progress of the probe.
Financial Intelligence Unit – India (FIU-IND)
- It was set by the Government of India on 18th November 2004 as the central national agency responsible for receiving, processing, analyzing and disseminating information relating to suspect financial transactions.
- FIU-IND is also responsible for coordinating and strengthening efforts of national and international intelligence, investigation and enforcement agencies in pursuing the global efforts against money laundering and financing of terrorism.
- FIU-IND is an independent body reporting directly to the Economic Intelligence Council (EIC) headed by the Finance Minister.
- FIU-IND is a multi disciplinary body with a sanctioned strength of 75 personnel–from different organizations namely Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC), Reserve Bank of India (RBI), Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Department of Legal Affairs and Intelligence agencies.
- Collection of Information: Act as the central reception point for receiving Cash Transaction reports (CTRs),Non-Profit Organisation Transaction Report(NTRs), Cross Border Wire Transfer Reports (CBWTRs), Reports on Purchase or Sale of Immovable Property (IPRs) and Suspicious Transaction Reports (STRs) from various reporting entities.
- Analysis of Information: Analyse received information in order to uncover patterns of transactions suggesting suspicion of money laundering and related crimes.
- Sharing of Information: Share information with national intelligence/law enforcement agencies, national regulatory authorities and foreign Financial Intelligence Units.
- Act as Central Repository: Establish and maintain national data base on the basis of reports received from reporting entities.
- Coordination: Coordinate and strengthen collection and sharing of financial intelligence through an effective national, regional and global network to combat money laundering and related crimes.
- Research and Analysis: Monitor and identify strategic key areas on money laundering trends, typologies and developments.
3. The importance of September 2, Tibetan Democracy Day, for Tibetans in exile around the world
- A little more than six decades ago, Tibetan Democracy Day was marked with the inauguration of the Tibetan government-in-exile in Dharamshala on September 2. On Friday, under the photo of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Tibetan refugees across the world in their traditional dress, chupa, will celebrate the 62nd anniversary of Tibetan Democracy Day.
- The day, widely known within the community as MangstoDuchen(‘Mangsto’: democracy; ‘Duchen’: occasion) marks the inception of the Tibetan democratic system in exile. At the heart of the Tibetan democratic system, which governs over 1 lakh refugees across the world, stands the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA), the Tibetan government-in-exile in Dharamshala.
What are the major milestones on the road to the development of the Tibetan democratic system?
- On September 2, 1960, a year after thousands of Tibetans had been forced to flee their home, the first elected representatives of the Tibetan Parliament-in-exile took their oaths in Bodh Gaya to inaugurate the Tibetan democratic system.
- In 1963, the Dalai Lama enacted the Tibetan constitution based on the ideals of democracy and universal values, following which the first women representatives were elected. In 1975, Kashag, the apex body of CTA, declared September 2 as the founding day of Tibetan democracy.
How does the CTA, the Tibetan government-in-exile, work?
- The CTA, which is based in Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh, has a branch office in every Tibetan settlement spread across India and abroad. Under its incumbent President, PenpaTsering, CTA runs seven departments: Religion and Culture, Home, Finance, Education, Security, Information and International Relations, and Health. The President is directly elected every five years.
- The Tibetan Parliament-in-exile, the highest legislative body of the CTA, comprises 45 members: 10 representatives from each of the traditional provinces of Tibet, U-Tsang, Dhotoe, and Dhomey; two from each of the four schools of Tibetan Buddhism; two representing each of the Tibetan communities in North America and Europe; and one each from Australasia and Asia (excluding India, Nepal and Bhutan).
- Every Tibetan above 18 with their Green Book, the main document of identity, is allowed to register in the voter’s list.
What is India’s official policy towards the CTA?
- India considers the Dalai Lama as a revered religious leader and an honoured guest, but it does not encourage political activities by Tibetans. It “does not recognise any separate government of Tibet functioning in India,” said Tenzin Lekshay, the official spokesperson of the CTA. “In spite of this, we have been maintaining contacts and relationship with many countries over the years.”
- Tibetan refugees across the world recognise the CTA as their legitimate government.
- Given Beijing’s strong sensitivities, India has sometimes been accused of having an ambiguous policy on Tibet. While India follows the “One China” policy, it does not feel the need to reiterate it frequently.
Section: International organisation
Context: UN Human Rights Office issues assessment of human rights concerns in Xinjiang, China
The UN Human Rights Office today issued an assessment of human rights concerns in China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region.
The assessment was initiated following serious allegations of human rights violations against Uyghurs and other predominantly Muslim communities brought to the attention of the UN Human Rights Office and UN human rights mechanisms since late 2017, particularly in the context of the Chinese Government’s policies and measures to combat terrorism and “extremism”.
Xinjiang issue: https://optimizeias.com/daily-prelims-notes-17-july-2022/
UN Human Rights Council
- The UN Human Rights Council is an inter-governmental body within the United Nations system responsible for strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights around the world.
- The Council was created by the United Nations General Assembly in 2006. It replaced the former United Nations Commission on Human Rights.
- The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) serves as the Secretariat of the Human Rights Council.
- OHCHR is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.
- It is made up of 47 United Nations Member States which are elected by the UN General Assembly (UNGA).
- The UNGA takes into account the candidate States’ contribution to the promotion and protection of human rights, as well as their voluntary pledges and commitments in this regard.
The Council’s Membership is based on equitable geographical distribution. Seats are distributed as follows:
- African States: 13 seats
- Asia-Pacific States: 13 seats
- Latin American and Caribbean States: 8 seats
- Western European and other States: 7 seats
- Eastern European States: 6 seats
- Members of the Council serve for a period of three years and are not eligible for immediate re-election after serving two consecutive terms.
Procedures and Mechanisms:
- Universal Periodic Review: UPR serves to assess the human rights situations in all United Nations Member States.
- Advisory Committee: It serves as the Council’s “think tank” providing it with expertise and advice on thematic human rights issues.
- Complaint Procedure: It allows individuals and organizations to bring human rights violations to the attention of the Council.
- UN Special Procedures: These are made up of special rapporteurs, special representatives, independent experts and working groups that monitor, examine, advise and publicly report on thematic issues or human rights situations in specific countries.
5. Calling time on caretakers of J&K’s Sufi shrines
Subject :Science and Technology
Section : Biotechnology
The medieval period witnessed the rise and development of a large number of Muslim religious movements, mystic organizations, religious cults and attitudes.
The Islamic mysticism was known as Sufism.
- It aims at establishing direct communion between God and man through personal experience of mystery which lies within Islam.
- Every religion gives rise to mystical tendencies in its fold at a particular stage of its evolution. In this sense, sufism was a natural development within Islam based on the spirit of Quaranic piety.
- In Sufism, self discipline is considered an essential condition to gain knowledge of God by sense of perception.
- Unlike orthodox Muslims which emphasise on external conduct, the Sufis lay stress on inner purity.
- Sufis believe service to humanity is tantamount to service to God.
The characteristics of Sufism are:
- Fana: Devotee’s spiritual union with Allah.
- Insan-e-kamil: A perfect human being with all nice qualities.
- Zikr-tauba: Continual remembrance of God (zikr)
- Wahdatul-wajood: There is only one god for the entire cosmos; god and being are one.
- Sama: Spiritual dance and music are used to promote their ideas, despite the fact that music is not permitted in Islam.
Sufi Orders in India
- Sufis were eventually organised into orders or ‘silsilas.’
- Ain-i-Akbari mentions around dozen silsilahs. They were divided into two groups: ‘Beshara’ and ‘Ba-shara.’
- The Bashara Sufis followed Islamic law (i.e. Sharia), and the silsilah (continuity) established by one saint was carried on by his disciples.
- There were 12 of these silsilahs. They include silsilahs such as Chishti, Suhrawardi, Firdausi, Qadariya, and Naqshbandi, among others.
- Sharia was not accepted by the Be-shara. They were dubbed ‘Mast kalandars/Malangs/Haidaris’.
- These wandering saints were commonly referred to as ‘babas.’ They didn’t leave many written accounts.
- They usually practised very strict asceticism and defied or ignored the rituals.
Some of the important Sufi orders are:
- It was founded by Sheikh Abdul Chisti
- It was introduced in India by Sheikh Moinuddin Chisti. His Dargah is at Ajmer
- QutubuddinBakhtiar Kaki was the chief disciple of Moinuddin.
- Iltutmush dedicated Qutub Minar to Bakhtiar Kaki
- Sheikh Nizamuddin was the most popular Sufi saint in India. Amir Khusro, the greatest musician and literary giant was also the disciple of Sheikh Nizamuddin.
- A system called Nadasampradaya was followed which meant burying disciples near as one family
- Sheikh Salim Chisti was the last great saint of this order. He was held in great respect by Akbar.
- Qamkhana were hermitages of Chisti saints outside the city
- It was founded by ShihabuddinShuhrawardi
- It was introduced in India by Bhauddin
- It was the richest order and very soon became unpopular
- It was the only Sufi order which was founded and developed within India
- It was founded by Sharafuddin, it was confined to Bihar
- He composed Maqtubat and Mulfazat literature
- The above dealt with the lives and teachings of Sufi saints
- It was the most secular Sufi silsila
- It was founded by Sheikh Jilani Qadri
- Dara Shikoh, son of Shah Jahan followed this order
- It was founded by Sheikh Biqabullah
- It was introduced into India by Sheikh Pirsai
- Sheikh Niyamtulla was the greatest scholar of this school
- It was the most conservative of the orders. Aurangzeb followed this order
- This order of the sufis is from Kashmir
- This order was founded by Shaikh NuruddinWdi and it had profound influence of non-conformist ideas of the famous 14th century women bhakti-preacher, Lal Ded (was a Kashmiri mystic of the Kashmir Shaivism school of philosophy).
Malfuzat (Conversations of the Sufi saints)
- Malfuzats were compiled by different Sufi Silsilahs, with the permission of the Shaikhs, these had obvious didactic purposes.
Maktubat (Collections of letters)
- Letters written by Sufi masters, addressed to their disciples and associates – while these tell us about the Shaikh’s experience of religious truth that he wanted to share with others, they also reflect the life conditions of the recipients and are responses to their aspirations and difficulties, both spiritual and mundane.
Tazkiras (Biographical accounts of the saints)
- The most famous Tazkira is the Akhbar-ul-Akhyar of Abdul Haqq MuhaddisDehlavi. The authors of the Tazkiras often sought to establish the precedence of their own orders and glorify their spiritual genealogies.
Sufi Shrines in India
Ajmer Sharif in Rajasthan
- The Dargah or Sufi shrine in Rajasthan’s Ajmer is one of the most renowned Muslim Shrines in India that welcomes thousands of devotees every year from different religious groups.
- The shrine is the resting place of noble Sufi saint Khwaja Moin-Ud-Din Chisti.
- Khwaja Moin-Ud-Din is not only a religious figure but also an epitome of humanism. He dedicated his entire life to serving the poor and neglected people of society. He is also known as Garib Nawaz.
- Having been built by Mughal Emperor Humayun, the shrine is a glorious instance of Mughal architecture.
Hazrat Nizamuddin Dargah in Delhi
- Having been built in the memory of the globally renowned Sufi saint, Nizamuddin Chisti, the Dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin is located in the Indian capital of Delhi.
- Being constructed in 1526, the Dargah still carries the traditional values of Sufism and welcomes people from all religions with equal warmth.
- Besides Nizamuddin Chisti, noble Muslim people like Jahan Ara Begum, Inayat Khan, and Urdu poet Amir Khusro are also buried inside this sacred Dargah complex.
Sheikh Salim Chisti Dargah in Fatehpur Sikri
- The Dargah of Sheikh Salim Ali Chisti in the royal Fatepur Sikri complex is also another beautiful instance of Mughal architecture.
- Mughal Emperor Akbar constructed the Dargah in the memory of the Sufi Saint Sheikh Salim Ali Chisti whom he met before the birth of Jehangir.
- Salim Chisti predicted the birth of a male heir on the Mughal throne and therefore, Jehangir was also named after him as “Salim”.
- The tomb of Salim Ali Chisti is built with sterling white marble.
Haji Ali Dargah in Mumbai
- The Haji Ali Dargah in Mumbai is located on the beautiful background of the Arabian Sea. Despite being a wealthy merchant, Haji Ali left all the material possessions after his visit to Mecca and became a Sufi saint.
- A little islet on the southern coast of Mumbai is home to this famous Dargah
Khanqah of Shah Hamdan
- It is also famous by the name of Shah-i-Hamdan Mosque and Khanqah-e-Molla was built by Sultan Sikander in 1400 AD on the banks of the river Jhelum in Srinagar. The mosque was constructed in honour of Mir Syed Ali Hamdani, the Muslim saint who first popularised the religion of Islam in Jammu and Kashmir.
- It is dedicated to Persian saint Mir Sayyid Ali Hamdani, who propagated Islam in Kashmir in the 14th century.
6. Seven States cold to Centre’s crime portal
At least seven States and one Union Territory have given a cold shoulder to the Centre’s online platform meant to share information and coordinate action among law enforcement agencies on serious criminal incidents, including human trafficking, data show
The Crime Multi Agency Centre (Cri-MAC)
- The Crime Multi Agency Centre (Cri-MAC) was launched in 2020 by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to share information on crime and criminals 24×7 with various law enforcement agencies and ensure a seamless flow of information among them.
- The application run by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) aims to help in early detection and prevention of crime incidents across the country.
Relevant Laws in India
Article 23 and 24 of the Constitution of India.
- Article 23 prohibits human trafficking and begar (forced labour without payment).
- Article 24 forbids employment of children below the age of 14 years in dangerous jobs like factories and mines.
Indian Penal Code (IPC) Section:
- Section 370 and 370A of IPC provide for comprehensive measures to counter the menace of human trafficking including trafficking of children for exploitation in any form including physical exploitation or any form of sexual exploitation, slavery, servitude, or the forced removal of organs.
- Sections 372 and 373 dealing with selling and buying of girls for the purpose of prostitution.
- India has ratified (in 2011) United Nations Convention on Transnational Organised Crime (UNCTOC) which among others has a Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children.
7. Cervavac- India’s first indigenously developed vaccine for cervical cancer
Subject: Science and Technology
- Union Minister of Science and Technology Dr Jitendra Singh on Thursday (September 1), announced the scientific completion of Cervavac, India’s first indigenously developed quadrivalent human papillomavirus (qHPV) vaccine for the prevention of cervical cancer.
- Despite being largely preventable, cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer among women globally, according to the WHO. In 2018, an estimated 570,00 women were diagnosed with the disease and it accounted for 311,000 deaths across the world.
How common is cervical cancer in India?
- India accounts for about a fifth of the global burden of cervical cancer, with 1.23 lakh cases and around 67,000 deaths per year.
- Almost all cervical cancer cases are linked to certain strains of human papillomavirus (HPV), a common virus that is transmitted through sexual contact. While the body’s immune system usually gets rid of the HPV infection naturally within two years, in a small percentage of people the virus can linger over time and turn some normal cells into abnormal cells and then cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
- Cervical cancer is preventable if detected early and managed effectively, it kills one woman every 8 minutes in the country.
- Screening and vaccination are two powerful tools that are available for preventing cervical cancer. Still, there is little awareness among women about the prevention of this cancer and less than 10% of Indian women get screened. All women aged 30-49 must get screened for cervical cancer even if they have no symptoms and get their adolescent daughters vaccinated with the HPV vaccine.
Who developed the new qHPV vaccine?
- Cervavac was developed by the Pune-based Serum Institute of India in coordination with the Government of India’s Department of Biotechnology (DBT).
- Cervavac received market authorisation approval from the Drug Controller General of India on July 12 this year.
How effective is the new vaccine?
- HPV vaccines are given in two doses and data has shown that the antibodies that develop after both are administered can last up to six or seven years, according to Dr. Rajesh Gokhale. Unlike Covid vaccines, booster shots may not be required for the cervical cancer vaccine, he added.
- Until now, the HPV vaccines available in India were produced by foreign manufacturers at an approximate cost of Rs 2,000 to Rs 3,500 per dose. Cervavac is likely to be significantly cheaper, slated to cost approximately Rs 200 to 400. It has also demonstrated a robust antibody response that is nearly 1,000 times higher than the baseline against all targeted HPV types and in all dose and age groups.
8. The landmark Mary Roy case in SC; which gave Syrian Christian women equal right to property
Section : Fundamental Rights
Educator and women’s rights activist Mary Roy, who passed away on Thursday (September 1), was best known for the “Mary Roy” case, the prolonged legal battle that ensured equal property rights for women from Kerala’s Syrian Christian families.
1983 petition under Article 32
- Denied equal rights to her deceased father’s property, Mary Roy sued her brother, George Isaac, marking the beginning of a case that is seen as a milestone in ensuring gender justice in India.
- The key question before the Supreme Court was whether, in territories that once formed part of the erstwhile Travancore state, matters of intestate (a person who has died without leaving a will) succession to the property of Indian Christian community members were governed by the Travancore Christian Succession Act 1917, or by the Indian Succession Act, 1925.
Mary Roy’s plea
- The petition filed before the apex court said that the Travancore Succession Act violated Article 14 of the Constitution by discriminating on the basis of gender.
- Roy argued that the relevant provisions of the Travancore Succession Act discriminate between man and woman on the basis of gender and are, therefore, in violation of Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution, and that the Act was repugnant to Indian Succession Act 1925, which does not discriminate on the grounds of gender.
Verdict in the case
- The Supreme Court in its 1986 judgment upheld the supremacy of the Indian Succession Act, 1925. A Bench comprising Chief Justice of India P N Bhagwati and Justice R S Pathak ruled that in case the deceased parent has not left a will, the succession will be decided as per the Indian Succession Act, 1925 which will also apply to the Indian Christian Community in the erstwhile state of Travancore.
- The verdict put an end to the socially-sanctioned practice in Syrian Christian families to deny women their rightful share in inheritance.
Hindu Succession Act, 1956
- The Mitakshara school of Hindu law codified as the Hindu Succession Act, 1956 governed succession and inheritance of property but only recognized males as legal heirs.
- It applied to everyone who is not a Muslim, Christian, Parsi or Jew by religion. Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains and followers of Arya Samaj, Brahmo Samaj, are also considered Hindus for this law.
- In a Hindu Undivided Family, several legal heirs through generations can exist jointly.
- Traditionally, only male descendants of a common ancestor along with their mothers, wives and unmarried daughters are considered a joint Hindu family. The legal heirs hold the family property jointly.
Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act, 2005
- The 1956 Act was amended in September 2005 and women were recognized as coparceners for property partitions arising from 2005.
- Section 6 of the Act was amended to make a daughter of a coparcener also a coparcener by birth “in her own right in the same manner as the son”.
- It also gave the daughter the same rights and liabilities “in the coparcenary property as she would have had if she had been a son”.
- The law applies to ancestral property and to intestate succession in personal property, where succession happens as per law and not through a will.