IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


2nd November, 2019


In Haryana, Rs 1,000 reward for information on farm fires

Haryana government announced a cash award of Rs 1,000 to anyone who provides information about cases of farmers burning crop residue in their area. Identity of informant will be kept secret.

Other decisions:

-       Explore options of purchasing crop residue from the farmers.

-       Organise Gram Sabha meetings so that detailed deliberations could be held with farmers .

-       Encourage farmers not to burn crop residues and persuade them to adopt eco-friendly options of crop management.

-       Take stringent measures to prohibit burning of crop residue.

-       Monitor villages of where maximum crop residues were burnt to ascertain reasons.

Performance of Haryana:

-       34 per cent reduction has been registered in the area burnt in the state up to October 22 this year as compared to the corresponding period the last year.

-       Crop residue burning was reported on 57,000 hectares of land last year, this year, it was reported only on 38,000 hectares.

Reference: https://indianexpress.com/article/india/in-haryana-rs-1000-reward-for-information-on-farm-fires-6098959/


Conclave on MP govt’s right to health initiative begins

A two-day conclave that will brainstorm over fulfilling the Madhya Pradesh government’s promise to provide right to health to its residents, began in the state capital.

Way to achieve right to health:

-       Ensure Infrastructure and financial resources for hospitals.

-       Provide skilled manpower to health facility to achieve right to health.

-       Govt. supports PPP (Public Private Partnership) in health but remains open to other options too.



Reference: https://indianexpress.com/article/india/conclave-on-mp-govts-right-to-health-initiative-begins-6098905/


Maharashtra: Another agri crisis looms, over 40% of kharif crop damaged

Maharashtra is in the middle of another agrarian crisis as over 40 per cent of the 138.82 lakh hectares under kharif sowing has been damaged in the unseasonal and incessant rain that lashed the state in the last week of October.

Suffered damage:

-       Rain has hit over 54.22 lakh hectares, with cotton (19.73 lakh hectares), soya bean (18.63 lakh hectares) and maize (4.89 lakh hectares) crops suffering the maximum damage.

-       The districts of Marathwada have been the worst hit.

-       The losses incurred by farmers may cross Rs 5,000 crore, according to initial estimates.

-       More than 53,000 hectares of horticulture crops have been damaged in the rains.

-       Grape production will fall by 40%.

Reasons behind damage:

-       Increased rainfall activity due to arrival of cyclone Kyarr as well as withdrawl of Monsoon.

-       Barring districts in Amravati division, all other districts in Maharashtra have received more than their normal quota of rain.

-       Assessment of crop loss was delayed due to state elections and Diwali holidays.

Steps to mitigate the crisis:

-       Government has convened a Cabinet sub-committee meeting to decide on measures that need to be taken to reach out to the affected farmers.

-       A survey of damages using drones is being carried out across rain-hit parts of Vidarbha, western Maharashtra, Marathwada, Konkan and north Maharashtra.

-       A central team will also conduct a detailed survey.

-       Government will provide a mechanism to the farmers to salvage their crops that are ready and take the same to the market for auction.

Reference: https://indianexpress.com/article/india/maharashtra-another-agri-crisis-looms-over-40-of-kharif-crop-damaged-6098804/


Electoral bonds: Rs 6,128 crore sold so far, highest in Mumbai

The State Bank of India has sold electoral bonds worth Rs 6,128 crore since their introduction in March 2018, according to the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR).

About Electoral bonds:

-       Electoral bonds are interest-free bearer bonds that are used to donate money anonymously to political parties.

-       The bonds are issued in multiples of Rs 1,000, Rs 10,000, Rs 1 lakh, Rs 10 lakh and Rs 1 crore.

-       SBI is the only bank authorised to sell them.

-       Buyers can donate the bonds to a party of their choice and these can then be cashed by the party through its verified account within 15 days.

Challenges to Electoral Bonds:

-       Election Commission and civil society have opposed the scheme and the opacity it has brought into political funding.



Reference: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/telling-numbers-electoral-bonds-rs-6128-crore-sold-so-far-highest-in-mumbai-6098700/



Hyderabad figures in UNESCO list for rich culinary heritage

The UCCN or UNESCO Create City Network has declared Mumbai as a member of the creative city of films. Hyderabad has been named as a creative city for biryani and other delicious cuisines. UNESCO added both cities in UCCN (UNESCO Creative City Network) list along with 64 other cities from across the globe.

Previously, 3 Indian cities were recognized as members of UCCN, namely

-       Jaipur-Crafts and Folk Arts (2015)

-       Varanasi-Creative city of Music (2015)

-       Chennai-Creative city of Music (2017)

About UNESCO Creative City Network:

-       UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) was established in the year 2004.

-       It creates a network of those cities that are active centres of various cultural practices in their respective countries.

-       UCCN believes that these cities are working towards a common mission and that is to place creativity at the core of their urban development plans to make region resilient, safe, inclusive and sustainable.

-       The 7 categories for recognition under UCCN are as follows-

-       Crafts and Folk Arts

-       Design

-       Film

-       Gastronomy

-       Music

-       Media Arts

-       Literature


Reference: https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/hyderabad-figures-in-unesco-list-for-rich-culinary-heritage/article29845839.ece

President of India’s Greetings on the eve of Chhath Pooja

Chhath Pooja is a unique festival in which devotees worship sun, rivers, water bodies and extol the virtues of the nature. It begins with rigorous fast and ends with a sacred bath, a ritual which is undertaken by devotees on the belief that it purifies their soul.


Five dwarf planets and a new candidate — how is it decided?

There are officially five dwarf planets in our Solar System. The most famous is Pluto, downgraded from the status of a planet in 2006. The other four, in order of size, are Eris, Makemake, Haumea and Ceres.

Hygiea is the new claimant for the sixth dwarf planet.



Criteria for Dwarf Planet:

The International Astronomical Union sets four criteria for a dwarf planet:

-       It orbits around the Sun.

-       It is not a moon.

-       It has not cleared neighbourhood around its orbit.

-       It have enough mass that its own gravity pulls it into a roughly spherical shape.

Reference: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/fact-check-five-dwarf-planets-and-a-new-candidate-how-is-it-decided/


With India against terror, will talk Kashmir with PM Modi: Angela Merkel

In a more robust joint statement than the one issued two years ago, India and Germany called for a halt to “cross border movement of terrorists” and asked all countries to ensure that their territory is “not used to launch terrorist attacks on other countries”.

Key Points of Joint Statement:

-       On Kashmir, Merkel said that situation of people on the ground as of now is not good for the long-term, this certainly has to change. She advocated for relaxation and de-escalation.

-       Germany has moved closer to India’s position on Afghanistan, as they agreed on the need for “dismantling of terrorist safe havens and sanctuaries”.

-       Germany will work toward facilitating “export of military equipments as well as technology sharing” with India.

-       Germany  also sought deeper cooperation between the defence industries of both countries to take advantage of “defence corridors set up in the states of Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh” under the Make in India initiative.

-       They have decided to establish regular dialogue between their defence ministers, alternatively in India and in Germany, at least once every two years.

-       Two leaders expressed strong concern on the “global scourge” of terrorism and called upon all countries to work towards disrupting terrorist networks and financing channels.

-       Two leaders called for the finalisation and adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT) in March 2020.

-       The two sides also agreed to “deepen efforts to restart” stalled negotiations between India and the European Union (EU) on the Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA).

-       A total of 17 agreements were signed in the fields of agriculture, maritime technology, ayurveda and yoga, among others.

-       Five joint declarations of intent, including cooperation on strategic projects, green urban mobility, artificial intelligence and prevention of marine litter, were also signed.

-       The Chancellor referred to “artificial intelligence” and “digital transformation” as an area of cooperation.

Reference: https://indianexpress.com/article/india/angela-merkel-narendra-modi-india-germany-kashmir-issue-6098816/