unacademy 27 June 2018 The Hindu Daily News & Editorial Analysis The Hindu(Completely) Indian Express(Very Imp pieces) Delivered by : Sumant Kumar B.Tech in Computer Science & Engg, NIT Allahabad * Have written UPSC Main Exam in 2016 and 2017 with Physics Optional
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[TH Article] Chronicle of a victory foretold On Sunday, June 24, Recep Tayyip Erdo an and his Justice and Development Party (AKP) won both the presidential and the parliamentary elections. *The elections were conducted in extraordinary circumstances. Hundreds of journalists are in prison, as are thousands of political opponents-including the leader of one of the main Opposition parties, Selahattin Demirta . The state-run media did not care to be neutral Most state institutions, including the electoral commission, put themselves forward as the champions for Mr. Erdo an's re-election. But while Mr. Erdo an and the AKP certainly won the vote - including the presidential election by the first round he will have a hard time winning legitimacy for this victory.
The way he positions himself is crucial as a Turkish nationalist, including a protector of Turkish business interests, and as a Sunni internationalist. In the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, new money was created to break the unavailability of credit. OTurkey, like other middle-income countries (Argentina and Mexico), joined the larger economies in a low-interest regime to stimulate economic growth. When the US. Federal Reserve began to reduce money supply and to raise interest rates, capital withdrew from places such as Turkey and Mexico, which made their currencies lose value, Mr. Erdo an's financial managers prevented the Turkish central bank from raising interest rates to deal with this capital outflow The Turkish lira dropped in value against the US. dollar from 3.75TL in early 2018 to 4.92TL by May.
These new manoeuvres of international finance capital added substantial fragility to Turkey's economy, which already accumulated substantial external debt of around $500 billion (mostly private sector debt). D JTo do so, Mr. Erdo an may be compelled to enact policies that favour the By the end of the year, Turkey will have to pay down almost half of this deb bt. business communities and disadvantage the working class and the peasantry. Higher rates of unemployment can be expected, as can inflation in essential goods. Mr. Erdo an will likely deal with this situation in the way he has tackled it in the past by finding scapegoats in Turkey's Kurdish population or in unnamed 'outsiders OHe effectively uses a seam of Turkish anxiety about being targeted by outsiders, a symptom of having not properly come to terms with the collapse of the Ottoman Empire and of the European Union's (EU's) awkward arm's-length relationship with Turkey.
[TH Ed2] Tainted by uranium Reports of widespread uranium contamination in groundwater across India demand an urgent response OA study, published in Environmental Science and Technology Letters, has found over 30 micrograms per litre (mcg/1) of the heavy metal in parts of northwestern, southern and southeastern India. ODrinking such water can damage one's kidneys, and the World Health Organization prescribes 30 mcg/l as an upper limit, These findings highlight a major gap in India's water-quality monitoring. As the Bureau of Indian Standards does not specify a norm for uranium level, water is not tested regularly for it. This is despite the fact that evidence of uranium contamination has accumulated from across India over the last decade. The health effects of drinking uranium-tainted water merit special attention. Othe heavy metal damages the kidneys this is a chemical effect, rather than a radiological one, even though uranium is radioactive. But the chronic effects of uranium consumption are still unknown.
Mechanism by which uranium enters groundwater. The Environmental Science paper identified two types of terrains with heavy contamination, in Rajasthan and other northwestern regions, uranium occurs mostly in alluvial aquifers; while in southern regions such as Telangana, crystalline rocks such as granite seem to be the source OWhen groundwater is over-extracted from such soils the uranium is exposed to air, triggering its release. These hypotheses must be explored, because they will help determine where to find safer water. JThis is what happened in West Bengal, where a decade of research revealed why the contaminant OResearchers found that a combination of geological and chemical triggers brought arsenic mainly occurred in shallow aquifers. arsenic to the Ganga delta in the Holocene era, and then released it into the sediments from that period. Similar research across India's uranium hotspots can uncover who is at risk, and how to protect them
BIS Act 2016 establishes the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) as the National Standards Body of India. Compulsory certification: The Act has enabling provisions for the Government to bring under compulsory certification regime any goods or article of any scheduled industry, process, system or service which it considers necessary in the public interest or for the protection of human, animal or plant health, safety of the environment, or prevention of unfair trade practices, or national security. Hallmarking: Enabling provisions have also been made for making hallmarking of the precious metal articles mandatory Dallows multiple type of simplified conformity assessment schemes including self-declaration of conformity against a standard which will give simplified options to manufacturers to adhere to the standards and get certificate of conformity. Denables the Central Government to appoint any authority/agency, in addition to the BIS, to verify the conformity of products and services to a standard and issue certificate of conformity OThere is also a provision for repair or recall, including product liability of the products bearing Standard Mark but not conforming to the relevant Indian Standard.
Bureau of Indian Standards BIS: Inational Standards Body of India Junder Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution Destablished by BIS Act 1986 Minister in charge of the Ministry or Department having administrative control of the BIS is the ex-officio President of the BIS. Dit has 25 members drawn from Central or State Governments, industry, scientific and research institutions, and consumer organisations. Uworks as WTO-TBT enquiry point for India
[IE Ed1] City and the deluge The system, that can barely deal with 30 mm of rainfall, gets choked when Mumbai experiences torrential rainfall of the kind it got on Sunday and Monday. On Sunday, Mumbai received more than 150 mm of rainfall. But the memory that Mumbaikars dread most is that of the floods of 2005. At least 500 people lost their lives when 944 mm of rainfall, over a 24- hour period, brought the Mumbai Metropolitan Region to its knees. After the floodwaters receded, the Maharashtra government constituted the Madhavrao Chitale Committee to assess the city's disaster preparedness OThe recommendations of the committee's report, submitted in 2006, have been implemented sluggishly, at best.
The refurbishing of Mumbai's colonial-era stormwater drainage system, for instance, hasn't acquired the urgency required to meet the needs of a city of 1.84 crore people. OThe system, that can barely deal with 30 mm of rainfall,gets choked when Mumbai experiences torrential rainfall of the kind it got on Sunday and Monday. OThe situation gets compounded because the city's wetlands, creeks, and hbeen bul over or hatheciye etlands creeks nullahs have either been built over or have become stinking gutters Housing colonies empty their waste into them and untreated effluents from industries flow freely into what used to be Mumbai's natural sponges. OThe most important component of the city's drainage network, the Mithi river, which once demarcated Mumbai and its suburbs, is encroached upon and clogged with plastic and solid waste OVery little remains of the mangroves along the city's coastlines, which mitigated the effects of torrential rains.
It may not be possible to revive Mumbai's mangroves. But any long-term solution to the city's frequent flooding problems, as the Chitale Committee suggested, requires the unburdening of Mumbai's natural drainage system. DUnless the channels of the Mithi river are widened and the plastic menace curbed, India's financial capital will struggle to deal with heavy rainfall. A day before Sunday's downpour, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation laid down regulations, making Mumbai the first city in Maharashtra to enforce the state's ban on the use of plastics. But 17 other states, that have similar regulations in place, still find it difficult to contain the menace. OA 2016 report of the Central Pollution Control Board notes that, "plastic bags are stocked, sold and used indiscriminately even in those states where they are completely banned" The report also notes these states would do well to "implement the Plastic Waste Management Rules 2011, which mandate proper systems to ensure the segregation and disposal of plastic waste". This holds true for Mumbai as well.
Functions of Wetlands o There are two important functions of Wetlands that make them so important in the climate change. One is the mitigation effect by which they are able to sink carbon. Another is adaptation by which they are able to store and regulate water. o Water Filtration: Wetlands remove the excess nutrients and slow the water so to allowing particulates to settle out of the water which can then be absorbed into plant roots. up to up to 92% of phosphorus and 95% of nitrogen can be removed from passing water through a wetland. S The pollutants get settled by sticking to the soil particles. S Some wetlands accumulate the heavy metals and this decrease the pollutant load of the surrounding waters. . The wetlands support a vast and intricate food web and these complex food chains host various microbes and bacteria on which the invertebrates feed upon. These invertebrates can filter up to 90% of bacteria in this way.
IE Article] Two inequalities As a social document, the Indian Constitution mandates special provisions in favour of the underprivileged OThe Hindu right rejected the Constitution and its liberal values and has not been an enthusiastic supporter of SC/sT resersathnfohan Bhagwat called for a review of the OIn 2015, during the Bihar elections, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat called for a review of the reservation policy. Anticipating electoral losses in caste-ridden Bihar, the BJP quickly distanced itself from the statement of the RSS chief. After by-election defeats, UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, in an effort to break Dalit- Muslim unity, has raised the issue of SC/ST reservations at Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) and Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI OThe Modi government, in spite of promises by Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan, neither brought an ordinance to undo the March 20 controversial iudgment of the apex court on atrocities against SCs/STs, nor showed any inclination of overturning the regressive judgment of Allahabad High Court in Vivek Tiwari (2017) on reservations in universities or judgments on reservations in promotions
The court has consistently held that governmental "aid" cannot come "with such restrictions which will destroy or annihilate the minority character of such institutions" OThat AMU or JMI receive governmental "aid" has no effect whatsoever on their minority character. In the case of AMU, there is a stay order of the apex court on the 2005 decision of Allahabad HC and therefore till the SC finally determines its minority character, no change in its reservation policy is legally possible. OAs far as the JMI is concerned, the National Commission of Minority Educational Institutions (NCMEI) has recognised it as a minority institution. OA few weeks back, the apex court in Sisters of St Joseph of Cluny (2018) held that the NCMEI has the jurisdiction to declare the minority character of educational institutions. Minority institutions are like private institutions that have been established by the minorities primarily for the education of the concerned minority. They invest their resources, their land and money in establishing such institutions.
Till 2003, as per St. Stephen's (1991), minority institutions were allowed to reserve only 50 per cent seats in favour of the minority that has established such an institution. UTMA Pai (2003) lifted the upper limit of 50 per cent OThus now minority institutions may have more than 50 per cent reservations in favour of minorities depending upon the course and needs of the minority communit DAssuming in a minority university, there is just 50 per cent reservation for the concerned minority, now if 22.5 per cent SC/ST reservations and 27 per cent OBC reservations is also provided in such an institution, only 0.5 per cent seats will be left for the general candidates. Since the Supreme Court has said that 50 per cent seats should always remain available to the general candidates, SC/ST reservations was made inapplicable to minority institutions. The 93rd amendment thus was to comply with the apex court's order in TMA Pai. There is no Muslim reservation in AMU. It already has more than 45 per cent or so Hindus in its prestigious courses like medicine or engineering. If Yogi really cares for Dalits, let him force the BJP to implement Dalit reservations in the private sector. Meanwhile, let AMU and JMI make special efforts to increase SC/ST representation so that societal diversity is reflected in these institutions.
[TH Page10] Russia-related sanctions to dominate 2+2 talks When India and U.S. hold their first 2+2 Dialogue involving the External Affairs and Defence Ministers and their counterparts, one of the key issues would be questions regarding the recent Russia-related sanctions that have now come up as a key impediment for India's defence modernisation. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Defence Minister Nirmala Sithara man will visit the U.S. for the first meeting of the 2+2 Dialogue on July 6 with Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo and Secretary of Defence James N. Mattis O The new dialogue format was agreed upon by the two sides during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Washington D.C. in June 2017 [IE Explained] COMCASA: Why US, India can't connect Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement. What is the COMCASA? COMCASA is meant to provide a legal framework for the transfer of communication security equipment from the US to India that would facilitate "interoperability" between their forces and potentially with other militaries that use US-origin systems for secured data links. The general agreement signed by the US is called the Communication and Information on Security Memorandum of Agreement (CISMOA) but the name was changed to COMCASA to reflect its India- specific nature It is part of a set of three military agreements that the US considers "foundational" for a functional military relationship
India's concerns New Delhi is believed to be concerned about intrusive American access to Indian military communication systems, and about the violation of Indian sovereignty due to visits by US inspectors to Indian bases to inspect the COMCASA-safeguarded equipment There is also a fear that a lot of Russian-origin and indigenous lndian military platforms may not be compatible with COMCASA. Olt is also a politically sensitive issue in India. The signing of LEMOA had earned a lot of criticism for the BJP government from the opposition parties. Moving into an election year, with India-US relations on a somewhat less strong footing, the government may be hesitant to sign the agreement now.
Does this put India and the U.S. on the path to becoming military allies? O No, it does not make India either a de jure or a de facto ally OLEMOA only allows both countries to seamlessly pay for military goods, services, and supplies consumed during their exercises and other interactions The decision to engage in any of these activities remains a sovereign decision of each government- nothing in the LEMOA changes that. So the issue of India becoming an ally of any sort does not arise. Significance of LEMOA for India: The agreement puts an automatic approvals process in place for the two militaries to share each other's bases for various operations. These include port visits, joint exercises, joint training, and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts; other uses are to be discussed on a case-by-case basis. The agreement will aid the sort of operations India has undertaken to rescue stranded Indians in conflict zones OFurther, as the Indian military continues to expand its role to aid in disaster relief, as it did during the 2004 tsunami, it will benefit from easier access to America's network of military bases around the world The pact will enhance the military's capability to be an expeditionary force, at a time when Indian interests are distributed around the world with major investments planned both onshore and offshore in oilfields
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B.Tech NIT Allahabad. Have written UPSC Mains 2 times with Physics. Channel "Sumant Kumar" on Youtube for Current Affairs Analysis.