Daily Current Affairs for UPSC CSE
- Global Security Initiative (GSI)
- Parliamentary Report on NEP
- Tibet issue
- Joshimath Sinking
- Aadhaar report by Moody’s
- Facts for Prelims
1 . Global Security Initiative (GSI)
Context: Nepal on Tuesday appeared to reject calls from China to join President Xi Jinping’s Global Security Initiative (GSI), but agreed to take forward ambitious cross-border connectivity projects during the visit of Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ to Beijing.
What is the Global Security Initiative?
- Global Security Initiative is an initiative proposed by China.It was first proposed by Chinese Communist Party general secretary Xi Jinping during the annual Boao Forum on 21 April 2022.
- It aims to eliminate the root causes of international conflicts, improve global security governance, encourage joint international efforts to bring more stability and certainty to a volatile and changing era, and promote durable peace and development in the world.
- Stay committed to the vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security.
- To respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries.
- To abide by the purposes and principles of the UN Charter.
- To take the legitimate security concerns of all countries seriously.
- To peacefully resolve differences and disputes between countries through dialogue and consultation.
- To maintain security in both traditional and non-traditional domains.
Implications for India
- According to a source, India is closely watching what China means when it talks of “indivisible security as the important principle” and “building a security community” under the GSI.
- China is now worried about NATO’s eastward expansion after Japan hinted favourably at NATO’s attempt to strengthen ties with Asia-Pacific partners.
- China has already “tried” this on India by taking a “step ahead of their active defence stance to undertaking pre-emptive moves” like the Ladakh stand-off.
- Experts believe China will now move from what was ostensibly the economic development approach through the Belt and Road Initiative to a more confident security focused approach of the Global Security Initiative in India’s neighbourhood.
- China’s seeming opposition to the Indo-Pacific or to an ‘Asia-Pacific version of NATO’ should not blind us to the possibility that China sees opportunities to build security blocs of its own in Asia, as it has attempted to a limited extent through the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and might take forward with South Asian partners.
2 . Phosphorus
Context: A handful of countries control most of the world’s reserves of phosphorus. This is a major geopolitical concern. The world’s largest reserves are in Morocco and the Western Sahara region. But here, phosphorus coexists with cadmium, a toxic heavy metal.
- Phosphorus is a chemical element with the symbol P and atomic number 15.
- Elemental phosphorus exists in two major forms, white phosphorus and red phosphorus, but because it is highly reactive, phosphorus is never found as a free element on Earth.
- It has a concentration in the Earth’s crust of about one gram per kilogram (compare copper at about 0.06 grams).
- In minerals, phosphorus generally occurs as phosphate.
- It is used as a flame retardant, as a food additive , a fertiliser and so on.
- Phosphorus is scarce and exists only in limited quantities, in certain geological formations. It also pollutes the environment.
- It doesn’t exist as a gas, which means it can only move from land to water, where it leads to algal blooms and eutrophication.
Distribution of Phosphorus and concerns
- The history of phosphorus spans its discovery in guano to current global supply chains. Today, a handful of countries control most of the world’s reserves of phosphorus. This is a major geopolitical concern.
- The world’s largest reserves are in Morocco and the Western Sahara region. But here, phosphorus coexists with cadmium, a heavy metal that can accumulate in animal and human kidneys when ingested. Removing cadmium is also an expensive process. As a result, cadmium-laden fertilisers are often applied to the soil, absorbed by crops, and consumed, bioaccumulating in our bodies Studies have found that this accelerates heart disease.
- Only six countries have substantial cadmium-free phosphorous reserves. Of them, China restricted exports in 2020 and many EU countries no longer buy from Russia. So the market for safe phosphorus has suddenly exploded. This is one reason why Sri Lanka banned the import of synthetic fertilisers and went organic in 2021, later experiencing a sudden drop in crop yield that precipitated a political crisis.
- India is the world’s largest importer of phosphorus, most of it from the cadmium-laden deposits of West Africa. Not all crops absorb cadmium at the same rate, but paddy, a staple crop in India, is particularly susceptible; Indian farmers also apply a lot of fertilisers to paddy. Other grains, such as wheat, barley, and maize also absorb cadmium, just less. If cadmium is not removed from the phosphorus, there may occur a public health crisis. On the other hand, removal of cadmium will make fertilisers more expensive .
The phosphorus disposal problem
- Only about a fifth of the phosphorus mined is actually consumed through food. Much of it is lost directly to water bodies as agricultural run-off, due to the excessive application of fertilisers. Most of the phosphorus that people consume ends up in the sewage.
- Most sewage in India is still not treated or treated only up to the secondary level. So even if the organic matter is digested, the effluent discharged from STPs still contains nitrates and phosphates.
- Of these, nitrates can be digested by denitrifying bacteria and released safely as nitrogen gas into the atmosphere, while phosphorus remains trapped in the sediments and water column. It is then absorbed by the algal blooms that grow in response to the high nutrient supply, and when they decompose, the bacteria that feed on them consume the dissolved oxygen. Water bodies become oxygen-starved, leading to fish deaths. The algal blooms are also toxic, causing respiratory issues, nausea, and other ailments to people exposed to them.
How to tackle scarcity of phosphorous
- To address the scarcity of phosphorus, considering that a significant portion remains unused by crops, one effective strategy is to decrease the reliance on chemical fertilizers by implementing precision agriculture techniques.
Alternate sources of Phosphorous
- There is increasing interest in closing the phosphorous loop by mining urban sewage to produce high quality phosphorus. Interest in ‘circular water economies’ has in fact prompted the European Union – which has almost no phosphorus reserves of its own – to rethink the urban water cycle.
- First, source separating toilets – almost two thirds of the phosphorus we consume leaves in our urine and the rest in faeces. Urine also contains large amounts of nitrogen and potassium. If we can collect this safe and concentrated waste stream, we could generate a local fertiliser source. Source-separating toilets are designed to separate urine from faeces. If they are to become mainstream, buildings and homes will require a collection and storage system, leading to a logistics system that collects and processes the urine centrally.
- Second, recycling wastewater and sludge – Wastewater and sludge recycling are practiced in India, such as using nutrient-rich wastewater for agriculture in projects like KC Valley-Kolar. However, concerns exist about nutrient levels and soil degradation.
- Challenges: Transporting bulky sludge from sewage treatment plants (STPs) is costly, and farmers may not afford the sludge itself, limiting the profitability of sewage treatment. Sludge-mining from STPs could revolutionize the industry by recovering nutrients. Companies like Easy Mining in Europe retrofit STPs to extract nutrients from sewage, producing high-quality fertilizer that’s marketable at a competitive cost.
- Mining phosphorus from sewage allows countries to control their own phosphorus production while also addressing the problem of water-body eutrophication.
3 . Parliamentary Report on NEP
Context: The Parliament Standing Committee on Education, headed by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Vivek Thakur, tabled a report during the special session of Parliament on the “Implementation of the National Education Policy (NEP), 2020 in Higher Education.”
What did the report say?
- The report looked at the salient features of the NEP’s implementation in the higher education sector and the progress made so far.
- The panel met representatives of various State governments, Union Ministries, higher education institutions and other stakeholders to prepare the report.
- It noted that of the 1,043 universities functioning in the country, 70% are under the State Act and that 94% of students are in State or private institutions with just 6% of students in Central higher educational institutions, stressing the importance of States in providing higher education.
What were the issues discussed?
- The 31-member panel tried to discuss issues such as the rigid separation of disciplines, limited access to higher education in socio-economically disadvantaged areas, lack of higher education institutes (HEIs) that teach in local languages, the limited number of faculty, lack of institutional autonomy, lesser emphasis on research, ineffective regulatory system and low standards of undergraduate education.
- The panel said that by 2030, every district in the country should have at least one multidisciplinary HEI and that the Gross Enrolment Ratio in higher education, including vocational education, should be increased from 26.3% in 2018 to 50% by 2035.
What were the recommendations?
- The panel asked the Union Government and the State Governments to take actions such as earmarking suitable funds for the education of Socially and Economically Disadvantaged Groups (SEDGs), setting clear targets for higher Gross Enrolment Ratio for SEDGs, enhancing gender balance in admissions to HEIs, providing more financial assistance and scholarships to SEDGs in both public and private HEIs, making admission processes and curriculum more inclusive, increasing employability potential of higher education programmes and for developing more degree courses taught in regional languages and bilingually.
- The panel also recommended specific infrastructural steps to help physically challenged students and a strict enforcement of all no-discrimination and anti-harassment rules.
- The Committee appreciated the manner in which the NEP was implemented in Jammu and Kashmir. It said that the Union Territory was among the first in the country to implement NEP from the academic session 2022 in all its higher educational institutions. The panel said it witnessed a paradigm shift in the methods of teaching, leading to lifelong learning opportunities to students.
What about funding?
- The Committee suggested improving the effectiveness and impact of the Higher Education Financing Agency (HEFA) in funding HEIs.
- It asked the HEFA to diversify its funding sources beyond government allocations and explore partnerships with private sector organisations, philanthropic foundations, and international financial institutions.
- It recommended reviewing and adjusting the interest rates on loans provided by HEFA “to make them more competitive and affordable” for HEIs.
What about the multiple entry multiple exit programme?
- The panel said that Indian institutions were likely to face several issues in implementing the multiple entry and multiple exit (MEME) system.
- The panel said while the MEME looked like a flexible system, which was being operated by Western educational institutions effectively, it might not work well in the country.
- If institutions allow MEME, it would be very difficult for the institutions to predict how many students would exit and how many would join midway.
- it will further disturb the pupil-teacher ratio, Since institutions would not know the in- and out-traffic.
4 . Tibet and China Issues
Context: Tibetans are asking for more autonomy but not political separation, asserts the Dalai Lama, adding that while he wishes to revisit Lhasa, he will prefer to live on in Dharamshala.
- It is a region in the central part of East Asia, covering much of the Tibetan Plateau.
- It is the homeland of the Tibetan people. Also resident on the plateau are some other ethnic groups such as the Monpa, Tamang, Qiang, Sherpa and Lhoba peoples and, since the 20th century, considerable numbers of Han Chinese and Hui settlers.
- Tibet is divided administratively into the Tibet Autonomous Region, and parts of the Qinghai and Sichuan provinces.
Background of Tibet
- In 14th century, The Gelugpa school of Tibetan Buddhism, founded by Tsongkhapa , gained prominence and became the state religion under the rule of the Dalai Lamas.
- The Dalai Lama is considered the spiritual and political leader of Tibet.
- This was followed by Tibet coming under the control of the Qing Dynasty of China in the 17th century.
- Tibetans accepted the suzerainty of the Qing emperor while maintaining a degree of autonomy.
- In the early 20th century, British India and Tibet signed the Simla Accord in 1914, which defined the boundary between Tibet and British India (now India and Pakistan). However, the accord was not accepted by China.
- The Chinese Civil War, which culminated in the victory of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) led by Mao Zedong in 1949, had implications for Tibet. The new Communist government sought to bring Tibet under its control.
- In October 1950, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) of the People’s Republic of China, entered Tibet, leading to negotiations between Tibetan representatives and Chinese officials in Beijing.
- The Seventeen Point Agreement was signed in May 1951, which, while recognizing Tibetan autonomy in some areas, effectively brought Tibet under Chinese control.
- In 1950, at the age of 15, the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, assumed both spiritual and political leadership in Tibet. He sought to maintain Tibetan autonomy while working within the framework of the Seventeen Point Agreement.
- In 1959, a Tibetan uprising against Chinese rule took place in Lhasa, which was suppressed by the Chinese military. The Dalai Lama fled into exile in India, where he established a government-in-exile. Thousands of Tibetans also followed him into exile.
- Following the uprising, Tibet came under direct Chinese control, with the establishment of the Tibet Autonomous Region in 1965. The Chinese government has implemented policies aimed at political control and economic development in Tibet.
- The Tibetan diaspora, consisting of Tibetans who fled Tibet, has established Tibetan communities in India and other countries. The Central Tibetan Administration (often referred to as the Tibetan government-in-exile) is based in Dharamshala, India, and works to preserve Tibetan culture and advocate for Tibetan rights.
How the CTA, the Tibetan government-in-exile works?
- 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, Penpa Tsering, 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.
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.
- Tibetan refugees across the world recognise the CTA as their legitimate government.
- Former Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri in 1965 told the CTA that India is considering the case of recognition of CTA and that they would be in a position to answer in the following four or five months. 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.
- CTA President Lobsang Sangay was among the invitees at the swearing-in ceremony of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, and the Dalai Lama was hosted in Rashtrapati Bhavan by President Pranab Mukherjee two years later.
- The Dalai Lama has also been allowed to visit Tawang, one of the main sites of contention in the Sino-Indian border dispute.
- In 2017, amid ongoing tensions in Doklam, Lobsang Sangay visited Pangong lake in Ladakh.
- However in 2018,the Indian government had sent out a note asking senior leaders and government functionaries of the Centre and states to stay away from events planned by the Tibetan leadership in India to mark the start of 60 years in exile of the Dalai Lama.
- The government noted that this was a “very sensitive time” for bilateral relations with China.
5 . NRF
Context: Following the announcement of the National Research Foundation (NRF) there has been discussion among scientists around the kind of research that the NRF should fund such that the outcomes are innovative solutions to practical challenges. This is a difficult task due to an academic culture that is mainly directed by internal academic priorities and incentives, but not generally related to social problems and challenges.
- It is a new research funding agency recently approved by that the Union Cabinet
- It has a budget of Rs 50,000 crore over five years and was set up to help boost research and innovation in India by providing more funding, streamlining the research funding process, and strengthening linkages between academia, industry, society, and government.
- The Department of Science and Technology, would be an administrative department of NRF that would be governed by a Governing Board consisting of eminent researchers and professionals across disciplines.
- The Prime Minister will be the ex-officio President of the Board and the Union Minister of Science & Technology and Union Minister of Education will be the ex-officio Vice-Presidents.
- NRF’s functioning will be governed by an Executive Council chaired by the Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India, the statement added.
- It repeals the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) established by Parliament in 2008 and subsumes it into the NRF.
- The government will contribute ₹10,000 crore over five years.
- It will forge collaborations among the industry, academia, and government departments and research institutions, and create an interface mechanism for participation and contribution of industries and State governments in addition to the scientific and line Ministries.
- It will further focus on creating a policy framework and putting in place regulatory processes that can encourage collaboration and increased spending by the industry on R&D.
- Broad-basing research: One of the main objectives of the NRF is to get colleges and universities involved in scientific research. The NRF detailed project report had pointed out that less than one per cent of the nearly 40,000 institutions of higher learning in the country were currently engaged in research. NRF plans to address this lacuna in multiple ways. Active researchers, whether serving or retired, can be encouraged to take up NRF professorships at universities and colleges to start or improve their research cells in collaboration with the existing faculty. There will be no age barrier for such research mentors; they can apply for funding as long as they are active and bring value to the host institution. It also plans to offer doctoral and post-doctoral fellowships to young researchers at these universities. University professors and researchers will get opportunities to participate in long-term projects aimed specifically at solving societal problems, such as river cleaning, access to clean energy in villages, etc.
- Research in social sciences: The NRF would fund and promote research not just in natural sciences but also in humanities, social sciences and art. This is considered vital for inculcating creativity, critical thinking and communication skills. Social sciences, Indian Languages and Knowledge Systems, Arts and Humanities are among the ten major ‘directorates’ sought to be established under NRF, along with others like natural sciences, mathematics, earth sciences and engineering.
- Focus on National priorities: While the NRF is envisaged to support all good-quality peer-reviewed research proposals, it does aim to identify priority areas in which science and technology interventions can help larger national objectives.The priority areas could include clean energy, climate change, sustainable infrastructure, improved transportation and accessible and affordable healthcare.Towards this end, the NRF hopes to fund and support large-scale, long-term, multidisciplinary, multi-institutional projects. It also proposes to set up Centres of Excellence in major thrust areas to focus on research considered important for the country. In addition, the NRF would also back and coordinate the research happening in mega international projects like LIGO or ITER, that India is actively involved in.
- Funding: The core objective of the NRF would be to sharply increase the funding available to scientific research in the country, both from government and private sources. India’s spending on research and development has remained below 0.7 per cent of its GDP, when even countries like Egypt or Brazil spend more. Advanced competitors, like the United States, China, Israel, Japan or South Korea, spend anywhere between 2 to 5 per cent of their respective GDPs on scientific research.
- Experts argue that the proposed model of NRF does not address the challenges faced by the Indian scientific community. They claim this Bill has a design which is potentially capable of making the future of Indian science and higher education only more vulnerable and will allow the foreign donors, corporate philanthropists and domestic big business to capture the research directions.
- The proposed structures of decision making have the potential to destroy the publicness of publicly funded research and facilitate corporate capture.
- The detailed project report (DPR) issued for the NRF has plans to offer a large chunk of its support to the state universities. But the bill has chosen not to give a voice to the state councils of higher education and research. The block funding available to the State S&T Councils from the Ministry for Science and Technology has declined in a major way during the period of last ten years.
- The Bill does not follow the principle of cooperative federalism and has no place for the representatives of state governments in the decision making structure.
- Bill does not enunciate the role and contribution of the relevant actors operating under the economic and social ministries in the NRF decision making structures. The Union government cannot advance the research of value for societal applications without the participation of economic and social sector ministries.
- Structural voids in India’s research landscape unfilled: The NRF bill is not about block funding of research in the universities or the research institutions. It is about project funding. The NRF cannot take care of the challenge of sustaining the recruitment of teachers pursuing research.
6 . Joshimath Sinking
Context: Separate studies conducted by eight premier institutions of India to know the cause of land subsidence in Joshimath town of Uttarakhand attributed seismic activities, construction loopholes, population pressure, poor drainage system and others as the ‘likely’ reason for the sinking of the Himalayan town.
About the news
- Following the land subsidence in Joshimath, The Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology (WIHG), the National Geophysical Research Institute (NGRI), the National Institute of Hydrology (NIH), the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Roorkee, the Indian Institute of Remote Sensing (IIRS), the Geological Survey of India (GSI), the Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) and the Central Building Research Institute (CBRI) were given the mandate to identify the causes of land subsidence by the government.
- The reports of these institutions were submitted earlier this year, but they were made public after the Uttarakhand High Court last week questioned the State for hiding them.
Findings of the reports
- In its report, the CBRI stated that Joshimath town has 44%, 42%, 14% of masonry, RCC and other (traditional, hybrid) construction typologies, respectively, among which 99% are non-engineered. It means they are not in compliance with the National Building Code of India, 2016.
- The Roorkee-based NIH, in its report, said that maps of various springs, drainage network and areas of subsidence infer that land subsidence and subsurface water in Joshimath might have some connections.
- The WIHG mentioned earthquakes as a reason for slow and gradual land subsidence.
- After an analysis by the Small Baseline Subset Interferometry SAR Technique, the ISRO stated that the subsidence in the Joshimath region may be due to toe-cutting phenomenon, slope instability as a result of seepage of local drainage water in the soil, terrain and edaphic characteristics, loose and unconsolidated moraine materials of the slope (due to old landslide) and flash flood events in and around the area in the recent past. This has resulted in development of cracks in the ground as well as houses in Joshimath town.
What happened in Joshimath?
- Joshimath is situated in the middle slopes of a hill with Dhaliganga and Alaknanda rivers on the south and the north and perennial streams on the west and the east. It is simultaneously impacted by landslides and subsidence.
- In January, 2023, Wide cracks have appeared in many roads and hundreds of houses in Joshimath, Uttarakhand, and the authorities have declared it a landslide and subsidence-hit zone.
- Although appearance of cracks on buildings is not a new phenomenon in Joshimath, this time they are deeper and wider, leaving crater-like holes in some places, fanning widespread anxiety and fear among the residents.
- The town, which has been built on loose soil deposited by landslides, loose soft rocks and moraine (material left behind by retreating glaciers), does not have a systematic drainage.
What is land subsidence?
- According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), subsidence is the “sinking of the ground because of underground material movement”.
- It can happen for a host of reasons, man-made or natural, such as the removal of water, oil, or natural resources, along with mining activities.
- Earthquakes, soil erosion, and soil compaction are also some of the well-known causes of subsidence.
7 . Aadhaar report by Moody’s
Context: Global rating major Moody’s Investors Service has flagged concerns about security and privacy vulnerabilities in centralised identification systems like India’s Aadhaar programme. The unique ID system often results in “service denials”, and using biometric technologies in humid conditions is unreliable, it noted.
About the News
- Moody’s Investors Service has cautioned against centralised digital ID systems such as Aadhaar as they pose security and privacy vulnerabilities.
- A single entity controlling users’ ID credentials can dispose of user data for internal or third-party profiling purposes
- Aadhaar system faces hurdles, including the burden of establishing authorisation
- Reliability of biometric technologies, especially for manual labourers, in hot, humid climates is questionable.
- Moody’s termed Aadhaar, and a new crypto-based digital identity token called Worldline, as two digital ID systems in the world that stand out due to their scale and extent of innovation. However, Moody’s also said that they have drawn scrutiny, especially concerning privacy and security.
- Moody’s made a pitch for decentralised ID (DID) systems such as digital wallets, based on blockchain capabilities that give users more control of their private data and can reduce online fraud.
- Aadhaar is a 12 digit individual identification number issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India on behalf of the Government of India. The number serves as a proof of identity and address, anywhere in India.
- Any individual, irrespective of age and gender, who is a resident in India and satisfies the verification process laid down by the UIDAI can enrol for Aadhaar.
- Individuals need to enrol only once but in case of multiple enrolment, the Aadhaar is generated against one of the enrolment ID’s while others are rejected as duplicate. Aadhaar Enrolment is free of cost for all the residents of India.
- Aadhaar number is unique for each individual and will remain valid for life time. Aadhaar number will help the residents to avail various services provided by banking, mobile phone connections and other Govt and Non-Govt services in due course.
- The Government of India, as well as the State Governments, fund a number of social welfare schemes and programs that are focused on the poor and most vulnerable sections of society. Aadhaar and its platform offer a unique opportunity for the government to streamline its delivery mechanism under welfare schemes, thereby ensuring transparency and efficiency.
- The use of Aadhaar as an identity document enables beneficiaries to get their entitlements directly in a convenient and seamless/hassle free manner by obviating the need to produce multiple documents to prove one’s identity.
- For Governments, Service Agencies:
- UIDAI issues Aadhaar numbers to the residents only after de-duplicating their demographic and biometric attributes against its entire database. Aadhaar seeding enables elimination of duplicates under various schemes which leads to substantial savings to the government exchequers.
- It also provides the government with accurate data on the beneficiaries and enables implementation of direct benefit transfer (DBT) programmes. Aadhaar authentication enables the implementing agencies to verify the beneficiaries at the time of service/benefits delivery and also ensures the targeted delivery of benefits to them.
- Curbing Leakages through Targeted Delivery:All social welfare programmes where beneficiaries are required to be confirmed before the service delivery, stand to benefit from UIDAI’s authentication services. This will result in curbing leakages and ensuring that services are delivered to the intended beneficiaries only. Examples include subsidized food and kerosene delivery to Public Distribution System (PDS) beneficiaries, worksite attendance of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) beneficiaries, etc.
- Improving Efficiency and Efficacy: With the Aadhaar platform providing accurate and transparent information about the service delivery mechanism, government can improve disbursement systems and utilize its scarce development funds more effectively and efficiently.
- For Residents:
- Aadhaar system provides single source offline/online identity verification across the country for the residents. Once residents enroll, they can use their Aadhaar number to authenticate and establish their identity multiple times using electronic means or through offline verification, as the case may be.
- It eliminates the hassle of repeatedly providing supporting identity documents each time a resident wishes to access services, benefits or subsidies.
- Since Aadhaar is universal identity accepted across the whole country, the Aadhaar system enables mobility to millions of people who migrate from one part of the country to another by providing a portable proof of identity that can be verified through Aadhaar authentication on-line anytime, anywhere.
8 . Facts for Prelims
Dadasaheb Phalke Awards
- The Dadasaheb Phalke Award is India’s highest award in the field of cinema.
- It is presented annually at the National Film Awards ceremony by the Directorate of Film Festivals, an organisation set up by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
- The recipient is honoured for their “outstanding contribution to the growth and development of Indian cinema” and is selected by a committee consisting of eminent personalities from the Indian film industry.comprises a Swarna Kamal (Golden Lotus) medallion, a shawl, and a cash priz
- RoDTEP stands for Remission of Duties or Taxes on Export Products.
- The Scheme provides a mechanism for reimbursement of taxes, duties and levies, which are currently not being refunded under any other mechanism, at the central, state and local level, but which are incurred by the export entities in the process of manufacture and distribution of exported products.
- Scheme’s objective is to refund, currently un-refunded:
- Duties/ taxes/ levies, at the Central, State & local level, borne on the exported product, including prior stage cumulative indirect taxes on goods & services used in production of the exported product, and
- Such indirect Duties/ taxes/ levies in respect of distribution of exported products.
- rebate under the Scheme shall not be available in respect of duties and taxes already exempted or remitted or credited.
- Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act, 2002 was formulated with an intent to empower banks to recover Non-Performing Assets (NPAs) without the intervention of a court.
- It was formulated based on the recommendations of the Narasimham Committee and Andhyarujina Committee.
- Under the SARFAESI Act, a Central Registry of Securitisation Asset Reconstruction and Security Interest (CERSAI) is also constituted. CERSAI is a completely online central registry of security interests
- The first asset reconstruction company (ARC) of India, ARCIL, was set up under this act.
- The law does not apply to unsecured loans below 1,00,000 rs or where remaining debt is below 20% of the original principal.