Weekly Gyaan with Dr. V | Priority 1 news items from Dec 8-14 2017

#1. [op-ed snap] The outsider: On adultery law

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Section 497 of the Indian Penal Code, Article 15(3) of Constitution, Section 198(2) of the Code of Criminal Procedure

Mains worthy: Various laws/provisions that treat women as subordinate and the need to repeal them

Short Summary: Op-ed discusses the issue of adultery law (Section 497 of the Indian Penal Code) being reconsidered by Supreme Court.

SC has noted that in a case of adultery, one person is liable for the offense but the other is absolved and that the concept of gender neutrality, on which criminal law normally proceeds, is absent

The matter now goes beyond the limited question of the culpability of women involved in a relationship outside their marriage. The law perpetuates the notion that women are somehow naive, gullible, and lack the agency a man possesses and hence needs to be repealed.

Further reads: Provisions related to marriage, women safety in IPC and Constitution.

Read full op-ed here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/op-ed-snap-the-outsider-on-adultery-law/

#2. [op-ed snap] Two myths about automation

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Automation

Mains worthy: How automation will affect jobs

Short Summary: Op-ed discusses details about automation and its effects.

Automation can be defined as the technology by which a process or procedure is performed without human assistance.

According to a report, Automation Will Eliminate 9% Of US Jobs in 2018 and one-third of US workers could be jobless by 2030 due to Automation.

Impression that technological progress and job destruction are accelerating dramatically and previously safe jobs are now at risk are the two myths attached to automation.

The jobs are changing, not disappearing as machines are not capable of tasks in which empathy, compassion, intuition, interpersonal interaction, and communication are central

Read full op-ed here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/op-ed-snap-two-myths-about-automation/

#3. Narendra Modi inducts Scorpene-class submarine Kalvari into Indian Navy

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: INS Kalvari, INS Sindhushastra, Project-75, Kalvari tiger shark

Mains worthy:  Defense procurement and Make in India

Short Summary: News discusses commissioning of India’s first modern conventional submarine, INS Kalvari, into Navy’s fleet.

This is the first induction in almost two decades and thus becomes important.

Kalvari, named after a deep-sea tiger shark is the first of the six Scorpene-class submarines being built as part of Project-75 of the Indian Navy.

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/narendra-modi-inducts-scorpene-class-submarine-kalvari-into-indian-navy/

#3. [op-ed snap] Perils of going cashless

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill (FRDI), cashless society

Mains worthy: Government moves to reduce cash usage and its effects on depositors

Short Summary: Op-ed discusses about “bail-in” clause of the Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill (FRDI) which has led to worries about the safety of bank deposits.

The Bill enables the government to confiscate the deposits of ordinary citizens in order to save troubled public sector banks.

A cashless world makes it easier for banks to carry out their business of credit creation without the risk of having to satisfy the demand for cash from depositors as under cashless system, depositors are essentially locked in by banks.

Read full op-ed here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/op-ed-snap-perils-of-going-cashless/

#3. Govt, ASEAN in talks to take IMT highway up to Vietnam

Importance level: MEDIUM

Prelims worthy: India-Myanmar-Thailand (IMT) highway, ASEAN

Mains worthy: Various regional connectivity agreements involving India and their current status

Short Summary: News discusses about India and ASEAN countries holding consultations on the extension of the 1,360 km IMT highway — from Moreh in India to Mae-Sot in Thailand — to Laos, Cambodia and to Vietnam

This connectivity can generate annually, an estimated USD 70 billion in incremental GDP and 20 million in incremental aggregate employment by 2025

Connecting India with the Southeastern countries through a network of road will create jobs, market for crops grown in hilly regions of the Northeast which will also help growers in getting better price for their produce

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/story/foreign-policy-watch-india-asean/#post-94533

#4. [op-ed snap] In an elite club: On India’s Wassenaar entry

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), the Australia Group

Mains worthy: India’s nuclear program, NSG bid and way forward

Short Summary: Op-ed discusses about India getting membership of Wassenaar Arrangement.

This is a big step forward in India’s quest for formal acceptance as a responsible nuclear power as this agreement is clubbed with mechanisms such as the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) and the Australia Group.

Wassenaar Arrangement will embed India deeper in the global non-proliferation architecture and enable access to critical technologies in the defense and space sectors and also help in getting membership of Australia group and NSG.

Read full op-ed here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/op-ed-snap-in-an-elite-club-on-indias-wassenaar-entry/

Further reads: Read about India’s NSG bid, MTCR and backgrounder of issue here- https://www.civilsdaily.com/story/nuclear-diplomacy-and-disarmament/

#5. [op-ed snap] Raja Mandala: Indian diplomacy, beyond the canon

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Bodhi Parva, BIMSTEC, two plus two dialogue,  G-20, East Asia Summit, BRICS, Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, Commonwealth forum

Mains worthy: India’s rising stature in multipolar world

Short Summary: Op-ed discusses the new approach of Indian diplomacy in maintaining relations with all the countries and moving away from non-alignment.

Along with cultural, digital and physical connectivity, the idea of minilateralism with multiple partners has become an important theme in Indian diplomacy.

After the end of cold war, India looked beyond the idea of the Non-Aligned Movement and as a result India is part of such diverse organizations like the G-20, East Asia Summit, BRICS, and Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.

Read full op-ed here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/op-ed-snap-raja-mandala-indian-diplomacy-beyond-the-canon/

#6. No WTO deal without food security: India

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: WTO, WTO Ministerial Conference, Doha Round of negotiations, Trade Facilitation in Services (TFS) Agreement

Mains worthy: Issues related to food security and WTO agreements

Short Summary: News discusses India’s stance at the recently concluded WTO meet at Buenos Aires.

India has said it cannot envisage any negotiated outcome, at the meeting of the World Trade Organisation’s apex decision-making body, which does not include successful resolution of the food security right issue.

India opposed the endeavor of certain countries to include ‘new issues’ — such as e-commerce, investment facilitation and matters relating to small firms in the ongoing Doha Round of negotiations.

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/no-wto-deal-without-food-security-india/

#7. Govt bans condom ads from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. because they are “indecent”

Importance level: MEDIUM

Prelims worthy: Cable Television Networks Rules, 1994, Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI)

Mains worthy: Ban culture being imposed in name of preserving values

Short Summary: News discusses the government order which strictly asked TV channels not to air advertisements selling and promoting condoms

Apart from this, indecent, vulgar, suggestive, repulsive or offensive themes or treatment shall be avoided in all advertisements

This decision was taken after the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) requested the ministry earlier this month to take a call on such ads and their telecast timing

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/govt-bans-condom-ads-from-6-a-m-to-10-p-m-because-they-are-indecent/

#8. [pib] Water circuits to be developed on the lines of power circuits

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Water circuits

Mains worthy: Water management

Short Summary: News discusses need for water circuits in the country on the lines of power circuits for better water conservation

River connectivity programme can reduce water crisis in critical areas like Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Telangana, and Maharashtra

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/pib-water-circuits-to-be-developed-on-the-lines-of-power-circuits/

#9. New form of matter ‘excitonium’ discovered

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Excitonium, bosons

Mains worthy: Discovery and its details can be asked in Mains

Short Summary: Excitonium which was first theorized almost 50 years ago, has been proved by scientists

Excitonium is made up of excitons, particles that are formed in a very strange quantum mechanical pairing and exhibits macroscopic quantum phenomena, like a superconductor

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/new-form-of-matter-excitonium-discovered/

#10. Short on judges, justice a dish served cold

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Appointment process in Judiciary, Rankin Committee Report, Law Commission of India

Mains worthy: Pendency of cases in judiciary and way forward

Short Summary: News discusses the issue of judicial pendency and current status of vacancies in judiciary

Nearly 2.6 crore cases are pending in the district and subordinate courts across the country and 25% of  judges posts are lying empty

Apart from exams not being conducted and delayed results, unclear recruitment procedures and difficulties in coordination between recrutitment agencies (state psc’s) and High courts is a major reason of posts lying vacant.

SC has initiated various reforms to address this issue.

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/short-on-judges-justice-a-dish-served-cold/

#11. [op-ed snap] Living in a world of emerging microbial resistance

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Antimicrobial Resistance, ANSWER, NDM-1

Mains worthy: 2017 National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance

Short Summary: Op-ed discusses the issue of antimicrobial resistance and what effects it can have

The 2017 National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance talks about limiting antibiotics in effluent being dumped by drug makers into the environment

Until now, India’s fight against antibiotic-resistance was focussed on getting people to cut down on unnecessary antibiotic consumption but this attitude needs to be changed as antimicrobial resistance could give rise to new genes as dangerous as NDM-1

Read full op-ed here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/op-ed-snap-living-in-a-world-of-emerging-microbial-resistance/

#12. Joint Indo-UK military exercise focusing on interoperability

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Military exercises-Ajeya Warrior, Indra, Shakti, Shatrujeet, Drad sankalp

Mains worthy: India’s defence cooperation with various nations

Short Summary: News discusses about the third edition of the exercise ‘Ajeya Warrior’ that was held close to the Indo-Pak border in Rajasthan

The exercise was held against the backdrop of UN mandate of anti-terrorism operations

India has intensified its military cooperation with various nations after China’s increased presence in Pakistan as well as Indian ocean region

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/joint-indo-uk-military-exercise-focusing-on-inter-operability/

#13. UN rejects US recognition of Jerusalem as Israeli capital

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Jerusalem-historical importance and position (map based), UNSC

Mains worthy: Isreal-palestine conflict and itrs ramifications on world

Short Summary: Ndews discusses about urgent meeting of UNSC that was called to analyze the decision taken by Washington to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital

UNSC has said that Jerusalem is a final status issue for which a comprehensive, just and lasting solution must be achieved through negotiations between the parties

This was done after US President Donald Trump had recognised Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in a planned speech

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/un-rejects-us-recognition-of-jerusalem-as-israeli-capital/

#14. 119 nations back move to remove barriers limiting women’s participation in trade

Importance level: HIGH

Prelims worthy: Buenos Aires Declaration on Women and Trade, WTO

Mains worthy: Efforts across world for Women empowerment

Short Summary: News discusses about WTO’s Buenos Aires Declaration on Women and Trade

Nearly three-fourths of the 164-member World Trade Organisation (WTO) supported a declaration seeking women’s economic empowerment by expeditiously removing barriers to trade

India did not endorse this declaration as agreeing to the proposition to link gender and trade could lead to advanced countries using their high standards in gender-related policies to curb exports from the developing world

Read full news here: https://www.civilsdaily.com/119-nations-back-move-to-remove-barriers-limiting-womens-participation-in-trade/

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