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UPSC Daily Current Affairs | Prelim Bits 10-10-2020

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October 10, 2020
2 months
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NRI Quota in Technical Education

  • Supreme Court has ruled that Private colleges and institutions that offer professional and technical courses have a complete discretion to do away with their Non-Resident Indian (NRI) quota of seats.
  • The judgment quoted from the Constitution Bench verdict in the Inamdar case, which said the term ‘NRI’ in relation to admissions was itself a “misnomer”.
  • “Neither the students who get admissions under this category nor their parents are NRIs.
  • In effect and reality, under this category, less meritorious students, but who can afford to bring more money, get admission.
  • The money brought by such students enables the educational institutions to strengthen its level of education and also to enlarge its educational activities”.
  • The verdict also referred to the seven-judge Bench decision in P.A. Inamdar, which held that 15% NRI quota was “not compulsory” but “only potential”.
  • That was why the court had suggested limiting the quota to 15%.
  • As per the recent judgement Candidates under the quota cannot assert their right to be admitted, says court in a judgment
  • The colleges could completely eliminate the NRI quota for 2020-21 academy year.

Rudram-1 Missile

  • DRDO has successfully flight tested indigenously developed Anti-Radiation Missile - Rudram-1.
  • It is an air-to-surface missile, which is the first indigenous anti-radiation missile of the country.
  • Once the missile locks on the target, it is capable of striking accurately even if the radiation source switches off in between.
  • Rudram has been developed for the Indian Air Force - IAF’s requirement to enhance its Suppression of Enemy Air Defence (SEAD) capability.

Anti-Radiation Missiles

  • ARM’s are designed to detect, track and neutralize the adversary’s radar, communication assets and other radio frequency sources, which are generally part of their air defence systems.
  • These can locate and target any radiation emitting source.
  • These can play a key role in neutralizing any jamming platforms of the enemy or take out radar stations thereby clearing a path for own fighters to carry out an offensive and also prevent own systems from being jammed.
  • They uses 'Passive homing head' for Guidance, It is a system that can detect, classify and engage targets (radio frequency sources in this case) over a wide band of frequencies as programmed.

Nobel Peace Prize

  • The 2020 Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to the World Food Programme (WFP), a United Nations (UN) agency.
  • It is awarded for its efforts to combat hunger, bettering conditions for peace in conflict-affected areas and preventing the use of hunger as a weapon of war and conflict.

World Food Programme

  • It was established in 1961 by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and became a full-fledged UN programme in 1965.
  • Currently, it is the world’s largest humanitarian agency combating hunger.
  • Eradicating hunger is one of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 2: Zero Hunger) to be achieved by 2030 and WFP is the UN’s primary agency that works towards this goal.
  • In 2019, it assisted 97 million people, the largest number since 2012, in 88 countries.
  • The same year, it delivered about 4.4 million tons of food, purchased USD 1.7 billion worth of food from 91 countries, and USD 762 million worth of goods and services from 156 countries.

Survey on Migration

  • Labour Bureau under Union Labour and Employment Ministry is working on survey on migration.
  • It will provide authentic estimates of the number of migrant workers in the country, along with an assessment of the issues being faced by them.
  • The other surveys being carried out by the Labour Bureau are on
  • Domestic workers - The survey on domestic workers, who form about 3% of the workers in the country, would be a first of its kind and would help the government identify the problems faced by domestic workers in order to formulate policies for their benefit.
  • Professional bodies - The survey on professional bodies would help in assessing the employment and unemployment in various fields.

Animal Discoveries 2019

  • The report has been prepared by Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) and released by Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.
  • Few notable discoveries are
  1. Cnemaspis anandani - A rock dwelling gecko endemic to the Western Ghats.
  2. Sphaerotheca Magadha - A burrowing frog discovered in the farm fields of Jharkhand.
  3. Enoplotrupes (Enoplotrupes) tawangensis - A dung beetle from Tawang.
  • ZSI has introduced modern methods such as DNA barcoding, entire genome sequencing, and X-rays for the identification of new species.

Plant Discoveries 2019

  • The report has been prepared by Botanical Survey of India (BSI) and released by Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.
  • Both the ZSI and BSI have been releasing Animal Discoveries and Plant Discoveries since 2007, and this is the 13th publication in the series.
  • Few notable discoveries are
  1. Ginger Amomum nagamiense - A wild ginger variety discovered from the forest behind Kohina Zoo in Nagaland.
  2. Pteris subiriana - A wild fern found not just in Kerala but also in Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.
  • Data provided by the BSI stated that 28% of all plant discoveries in 2018 were made from the Western Ghats during 2019.
  • This followed by the eastern Himalayas (21%);, the east coast (11%) and eastern plains (10%).
  • The west coast has contributed 7% of the total discoveries, while the western Himalayas have contributed 6% of the discoveries.
  • Maximum (flora) discoveries were made from the State of Kerala, followed by Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Arunachal Pradesh.
  • Among the new discoveries this year, there are plants with horticultural value as well as those which can serve as alternative foods such as aroids, syzygium (wild jamun), impatiens, mushrooms and zingibers, among others.
  • The number of plant species found in India according to the BSI is 50,012, and accounts roughly for 12% of all flora species in the world.

Child Care Institutions

  • The children being taken in child care homes, are not only those who are orphans/abandoned children, but also children hailing from downtrodden/financially unstable families.
  • Therefore, if there is any child who is either being brought up by a single parent or comes from a family which is not able to bring up the child properly, then that child can avail all the facilities at a care home.
  • All the children in these care homes are required to study in nearby government schools”.
  • Recently Supreme Court has sought a response from the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), to its request to eight States for immediate repatriation of children living in care homes with their families.
  • The court questioned if the NCPCR could issue such general directions to the States without considering the education, health, safety of the children, the consent of their parents and their economic situation.
  • NCPCR has requested 8 States to “produce” children living in care homes before local child welfare committees for their ‘immediate repatriation’ with their families
  • The NCPCR reportedly wrote to Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Mizoram, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra and Meghalaya in this regard.
  • These States combined have 1.84 lakh children in care homes.
  • This accounts for over 70% of the children in care homes.
  • This is because the NCPCR, emphasis need for a child to grow up in a familial environment during pandemic situations.

National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR)

  • NCPCR is a statutory body set up in March 2007 under the Commissions for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005.
  • It is under the administrative control of the Ministry of Women & Child Development.
  • The Commission's mandate is to ensure that all laws, policies, programmes, and administrative mechanisms are in consonance with the child rights perspective as enshrined in the Constitution of India and also the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
  • It inquires into complaints relating to a child's right to free and compulsory education under the Right to Education Act, 2009.
  • It monitors the implementation of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012.

Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill, 2018

  • It comprehensively address children in conflict with law and children in need of care and protection.
  • It mandates setting up Juvenile Justice Boards and Child Welfare Committees in every district. Both must have at least one woman member each.
  • It states that the adoption of a child is final on the issuance of an adoption order by the court. Currently, there are 629 adoption cases pending in various courts.
  • The Act included several new offences committed against children (like, illegal adoptions, use of child by militant groups, offences against disabled children, etc) which are not adequately covered under any other law.
  • All Child Care Institutions, whether run by State Government or by voluntary or non-governmental organizations are to be mandatorily registered under the Act within 6 months from the date of commencement of the Act.
  • The Bill provides that instead of the court, the district magistrate will issue adoption orders to address the high pendency of adoption cases.
  • The Bill also seeks to transfer all pending matters related to adoption before any court to the district magistrate having jurisdiction over the area.

Source: The Hindu, Indian Express

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