Daily Current Affairs : 28th December 2021

Daily Current Affairs for UPSC CSE

Topics Covered

  1. Health Index
  2. FCRA
  3. Bharat Stage VI
  4. Facts for Prelims

1 . Health Index

Context : For the fourth year in a row, Kerala has topped a ranking of States on health indicators. Uttar Pradesh has come in at the bottom. The “Health Index” is part of a report commissioned by the NITI Aayog, the World Bank and the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry.

About Health Index

  • The report – ‘Healthy States, Progressive India’– considers 15-24 indicators including neonatal mortality rate (NMR), sex ratio at birth, maternal mortality rate, under 5 mortality rate (U5MR) and governance, among others, which are grouped in the three domains of health outcomes, governance and key processes.
  • The states are divided based on their size (19 big and eight small states) and Union territories.
  • NITI Aayog prepared the report with technical assistance from the World Bank, and in consultation with the health ministry. It compared performance for financial year 2019-20 in comparison to 2018-19.

Key Parameters

  • The Health Index score is based on the States’ performance across a large set of indicators that are divided into three broad domains — health outcomes, governance and information, and key inputs and processes.
  • Health outcomes include parameters such as neonatal mortality rate, under-5 mortality rate and sex ratio at birth.
  • Governance includes institutional deliveries, average occupancy of senior officers in key posts earmarked for health.
  • Key inputs domain consists of the proportion of shortfall in healthcare providers to what is recommended, functional medical facilities, birth and death registration and tuberculosis treatment success rate.


  • Kerala is followed by Tamil Nadu and Telangana, which improved its ranking.
  • Telangana improved its position from fourth to third, Gujarat from seventh to sixth, and Punjab from ninth to eighth. The most significant progress was observed in Assam as it improved its ranking by three positions, from 15 to 12.
  • Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh retained their rank, while four States improved it from the base year-to-reference year.
  • Among the eight smaller states, Mizoram topped the list, while Nagaland was at the bottom of the table in overall performance. In the overall health performance of Union territories, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, and Daman and Diu topped the list, while Delhi ranked fifth.
  • Similarly, among the Union territories, the national capital emerged as the top performer in terms of improved performance, registering an incremental change of 9.7 percentage points from last year’s index.


  • Report is important as the health ministry has linked the index to incentives to states and Union territories under the National Health Mission, a Niti Aayog official said.

2 . FCRA

Context: The Union Home Ministry said on Monday that it had refused to renew the FCRA registration of Missionaries of Charity (MoC), a Catholic religious congregation set up by Nobel laureate Mother Teresa, as “some adverse inputs were noticed”. The Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) registration is mandatory for any NGO or association to receive foreign funds or donations.

About FCRA

  • Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 1976 (FCRA) was enacted in the year 1976 with the prime objective of regulating the acceptance and utilization of foreign contribution and foreign hospitality by persons and associations working in the important areas of national life.
  • The Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) registration is mandatory for any NGO or association to receive foreign funds or donations.
  • Foreign contribution is the donation or transfer of any currency, security or article (of beyond a specified value) by a foreign source.
  • The amendment seeks to make specific changes to the FCRA law, first introduced in 2010 and whose rules were amended in 2012, 2015 and 2019.
  • The law provides the framework under which organisations in India can receive and utilise grants from foreign sources. 
  • Recent FCRA 2020 Amendment also aims to prohibit the acceptance and use of foreign contributions for activities that are detrimental to national interest and for matters connected thereto.

Renewal of license

  • Under the Act, every person who has been given a certificate of registration must renew the certificate within six months of expiration.  
  • The 2020 FCRA amendment provides that the government may conduct an inquiry before renewing the certificate to ensure that the person making the application:
    • is not fictitious or benami,
    • has not been prosecuted or convicted for creating communal tension or indulging in activities aimed at religious conversion, and
    • has not been found guilty of diversion or misutilisation of funds, among others conditions.

Grounds for Cancellation of FCRA Registration

  • If the Ministry of Home Affairs (Foreign Division)  observed that mandatorily compliances have not followed then it shall make order for cancellation of Registered Associations. Following are reason that can leads to cancellation of FCRA Registration
    • Non Filing of Annual Return
    • Not working in Public Interest 
    • Not maintaining proper FCRA Account
    • Utilization of Foreign Contribution for administrative Purpose
    • Acceptance of Foreign contribution in undisclosed bank Account
    • Making of False Statement, declaration or delivering false accounts

3 . Bharat Stage

Context : Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari asked automobile manufacturers to manufacture flex-fuel vehicles complying with BS-6 norms within six months.

About Flex Fuel Vehicles

  • Flex-fuel vehicles are capable of running on a combination of 100% petrol or 100% bio-ethanol and their blends.

About Bharat Stage

  • Bharat Stage norms are the automotive emission norms which the automotive manufacturers have to comply to sell their vehicles in India. These norms are applicable to all two wheelers, three wheelers, fourwheelers and construction equipment vehicles.
  • The norms were introduced in 2000. With appropriate fuel and technology, they limit the release of air pollutants such as nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, particulate matter (PM) and sulphur oxides from vehicles using internal combustion engines. As the stage goes up, the control on emissions become stricter.
  • To curb growing menace of air pollution through the vehicles emission, the Government of India has decided to leapfrog from the exiting BS – IV norms to the BS- VI, thereby skipping the BS – V norms, and to implement the BS – VI norms with effect from 1st April 2020.
  • Only those vehicles will be sold and registered in India from 1st April 2020 onwards,which comply to these norms. The norms are stringent and at par with global standards.

Difference betwen BS IV and BS VI

  • The extent of sulphar is the major difference between Bharat Stage IV and Bharat Stage VI norms.
  • BS-IV fuels contain 50 parts per million (ppm) sulphur, the BS-VI grade fuel only has 10 ppm sulphur. BS VI can bring PM in diesel cars down by 80 per cent .
  • The  new norms will bring down nitrogen oxides from diesel cars by 70 per cent and in petrol cars by 25 per cent.
  • BS VI also make on-board diagnostics (OBD) mandatory for all vehicles. OBD device informs the vehicle owner or the repair technician how efficient the systems in the vehicle are.

Benefits of BS 6

  • It is eco-friendly
  • It is more refined
  • More cleaner
  • Decreases the atmospheric pollution and improves the air quality
  • It is equipped with fuel infusion resulting in better throttle response & fuel efficiency
  • It mandates the installation of Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technologies and Diesel Particulate Filters (DPF) inside the engine to reduce the emission of soot from the vehicle.
  • OBD (on-board diagnostics) and RDE (Real Driving Emission) is the mandatory feature for all the BS-6 vehicles, and they are used to monitor the real-time emission from the exhaust gases of the vehicle.
  • BS-4 fuels contain 50 parts per million (ppm) sulphur, but the BS-6 grade fuel consists of only 10 ppm sulphur content.

4 . Facts for Prelims

Tejas, or Training in Emirate Jobs & Skills

  • In a bid to keep Indian workers relevant in the job market of Gulf nations, the government is launching a programme to upskill and re-skill overseas workers to cope with requirements in the post-pandemic scene.
  • Under the new programme — dubbed Tejas, or Training in Emirate Jobs & Skills — the government has partnered with leading employers in the UAE to “train, certify and place 10,000 Indian workers in a year”and “100,000 across the GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council] region over the next five years”.
  • The Tejas project extends across blue-collar jobs, including electricians, plumbers, multi-skilled technicians, welders, food and beverage service operators, cooks, car/bike riders and the mid-level workforce, which includes IT, finance and healthcare professionals.
  • The project aims to create a bridge courses in close collaboration with Sector Skill Councils in India and employers in GCC countries.

Edward O Wilson

  • Eddward O. Wilson, an American naturalist dubbed the ‘modern-day Darwin’ whose interest in ants led him to conclusions about human nature being directed by genetics rather than culture, died on December 26
  • He is also called as father of Biodiversity
  • Alongside British naturalist David Attenborough, Wilson was considered one of the world’s leading authorities on natural history and conservation.
  • “E.O. Wilson was called ‘Darwin’s natural heir,’ and was known affectionately as ‘the ant man’ for his pioneering work as an entomologist,” 
  • While an entomologist early in his career, he broadened his scope immensely, studying not just insects but the social interactions of birds, mammals and humans, and he effectively — and controversially — established a new field of science known as sociobiology.
  • Wilson presented his views in over 30 books, two of which – On Human Nature in 1979 and The Ants in 1991 – won Pulitzer Prizes for non-fiction. 
  • In 2016, Wilson published the book “Half-Earth,” in which he argued for the creation of human-free nature preserves over half of the Earth’s surface.

Leave a comment

error: Content is protected !! Copying and sharing on Social media / websites will invite legal action