Daily Gist of ‘The Hindu’, ‘PIB’, ‘Indian Express’ and Other Newspapers: 29 January, 2021

Daily news will speed up the preparation for the Civil Services Examination and it also plays a crucial role to grasp the current affairs topic comprehensively. Here we have covered most of the topics related to various categories including National, International, Sports, Science and Technology, and so on.

1. National Marine Turtle Action Plan

Why in news?

– Considering the need to have a conservation paradigm for marine mega fauna and marine turtles, the Ministry of Environment Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) has released ‘Marine Mega Fauna Stranding Guidelines’ and ‘National Marine Turtle Action Plan’ in New Delhi on 28 January, 2021.

Key facts are:

– According to the Union Environment Minister both floral and faunal diversity including the marine biodiversity is the beauty of India and we need to conserve it with best possible action and interventions.

– India has rich marine biodiversity along a vast coastline of over 7,500 km. From colorful fish, sharks, including Whale Sharks, turtles and big mammals like whales, dolphins and dugongs to bright corals, marine habitats not only harbor diverse species but also provide resources essential for human wellbeing.

– Millions of people depend on these resources ranging from maritime trade and transport, food, mineral resources, cultural traditions, spiritual values and inspiration that draws tourists from around the world.

– Despite the immense economic, ecological and cultural values of marine habitats in India, marine mega fauna species and marine turtles face a wide variety of challenges including stranding and entanglement.

– Managing such challenging situations requires coordination, action and people’s participation which would help in the long-term conservation of marine species and their habitats.

– The documents launched contains ways and means to not only promote inter-sectoral action for conservation but also guide improved coordination amongst the government, civil society and all relevant stakeholders on the response to cases of stranding, entanglement, injury or mortality of marine mammals and also conservation of marine turtles.

– These two documents highlight actions to be taken for handling stranded animals on the shore, stranded or entangled animals in the sea or on a boat, management actions for improved coordination, reducing threats to marine species and their habitats, rehabilitation of degraded habitats, enhancing people’s participation, advance scientific research and exchange of information on marine mammals and marine turtles and their habitats.

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2. Indo-French alliance

Why in news?

– Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Prakash Javadekar and Ms Barbara Pompili, the French Minister for Ecological Transition launched the Indo-French Year of the Environment in New Delhi on 28 January, 2021.

Key points are:

– The basic objective is to strengthen Indo-French cooperation in sustainable development, increase the effectiveness of actions in favour of global environment protection and give them greater visibility.

– Welcoming Ms Barbara Pompili on her maiden visit to India, Shri Prakash Javadekar emphasised on the significance of India-France alliance is working towards climate change.

– “India has made significant progress towards climate change action & has already achieved 26% of reduction of emission intensity. As of 2020, the renewable capacity in India stands at 90 GW which includes 36 GW of solar energy & 38 GW of wind energy. “, informed Shri Javadekar.

– He further added that India looks forward to strengthening the Indo-French cooperation in sustainable development, increase the effectiveness of actions in favour of global environmental protection and give them greater visibility.

– The Indo-French Year of the Environment over the period 2021-2022 would be based on five main themes: environmental protection, climate change, biodiversity conservation, sustainable urban development, and the development of renewable energies and energy efficiency.

– It is also a platform for engaging in discussions on critical areas of collaboration relating to the environment and allied areas.

– From the French side, it will be held under the aegis of the Ministry of Ecological Transition, in close collaboration with the Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs with the support of the Embassy of France in Delhi and its partners.

– From the Indian side, it will be coordinated by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) along with the Ministry of External Affairs, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy and other concerned Ministries/Departments/Organisations.

– A joint screening committee will also be set up to finalise the calendar of the events for the Indo-French Year of the Environment.

Daily Gist of ‘The Hindu’, ‘PIB’, ‘Indian Express’ and Other Newspapers: 28 January, 2021

3. World Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD) Day

Why in news?

– January 30, 2021, will mark the second annual World Neglected Tropical Diseases  (NTD) Day.

Key points are:

– India joins the world to Combat Neglected Tropical Diseases. On this day the Qutub Minar will be lit up along with other landmarks across the world.

– On World NTD Day, on 30th January 2021, more than 50 landmarks representing 25 nations across the world will be lit up to celebrate how far we have come together in beating NTDs.

–  India too will proudly join these countries, by illuminating UNESCO world heritage site, Qutub Minar.

– 1 in 5 people around the world is affected by NTDs. India is home to the world’s largest absolute burden of at least 11 of these major neglected tropical diseases. These diseases debilitate, disfigure, and can even be fatal to those affected.

Daily Gist of ‘The Hindu’, ‘PIB’, ‘Indian Express’ and Other Newspapers: 25 January, 2021

4. NCAVES India Forum 2021

Why in news?

– The NCAVES India Forum 2021, organised by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) in a virtual format, with live sessions on January 14, 21 and 28, 2021, concluded today on January 28, 2021.

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Key points are:

– The event covered a wide range of topics pertaining to the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting (SEEA).

– The first live session was dedicated to the discussion on the efforts made by India and the international agencies in the domain of environmental accounting and the second live session held on January 21, 2021 focussed on the Policy Demand for NCA in India and emerging opportunities for NCA to support national priorities in India.

– The focus of the concluding session was the achievements in natural capital accounting at the sub-national level and the prospects of natural capital accounts in India.

– In addition, MoSPI released the India EVL Tool giving a synoptic view of the environmental valuation studies conducted in India during the past twenty years.

– It was emphasized that the Ministry’s constant endeavour to provide timely, quality statistics would enable evidence-based policy-making.

– A holistic approach should be adopted taking into consideration both the environmental conservation as well as the growth of the country.

– State Governments play a major role in the ensuring that the development activities are devoid of any negative effect on the environment and that the need of the hour is to work collaboratively with states and local governments to implement laws that protect the environment.

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5. Village celebrates its newborn daughters

Why in news?

– Whenever a girl is born, Haridaspur, a remote village in Telangana, celebrates by distributing sweets and lighting lamps.

Key points are:

– This is due to the efforts by panchayat president Md. Shafi and secretary Rohit Kulkarni.

– All girl children in the village are going to have accounts of Sukanya Samriddi Yojana (SSY), a savings scheme being implemented by the Union government.

Daily Gist of ‘The Hindu’, ‘PIB’, ‘Indian Express’ and Other Newspapers: 23 January, 20212.

About Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana

– It is a small deposit scheme for the girl child launched as a part of the ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ campaign.

– A Sukanya Samriddhi Account can be opened any time after the birth of a girl till she turns 10, with a minimum deposit of Rs 250 (Earlier it was Rs 1,000). In subsequent years, a minimum of Rs 250 and a maximum of Rs 1.5 lakh can be deposited during the ongoing financial year.

– The account can be opened in any post office or authorised branches of commercial banks.

– The account will remain operative for 21 years from the date of its opening or till the marriage of the girl after she turns 18.

– To meet the requirement of her higher education expenses, partial withdrawal of 50% of the balance is allowed after she turns 18.

Daily Gist of ‘The Hindu’, ‘PIB’, ‘Indian Express’ and Other Newspapers: 22 January, 2021

6. Agreement with IEA

Why in news?

– India has inked a Strategic Partnership Agreement with the International Energy Agency (IEA) to strengthen cooperation in global energy security, stability and sustainability.

Key points are:

– The Objective is to encourage and promote strategic and technical cooperation in the energy sector.

– It will lead to a wider exchange of knowledge and will be a step towards making India a full member of the IEA.

– Strengthen mutual trust and cooperation & enhance global energy security, stability and sustainability.

– A phased increase in benefits and responsibilities for India as an IEA strategic partner.

– Building on existing areas of work and the Clean Energy Transitions Programme (CETP), such as energy security, clean and sustainable energy, energy efficiency, enhancing petroleum storage capacity, expansion of the gas-based economy in India etc.

About International Energy Agency

– It was established in 1974 as per the framework of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). IEA is an autonomous intergovernmental organisation.

Daily Gist of ‘The Hindu’, ‘PIB’, ‘Indian Express’ and Other Newspapers: 21 January, 2021

7. START Treaty

Why in news?

– Recently, Russia approved the extension of the New START treaty. It is the last remaining nuclear Russia-USA arms control treaty which is about to expire in February 2021.

Key points are:

– Both houses of the Russian Parliament (Kremlin) approved the extension of the New START treaty for five years. It was done after a recent telephonic conversation between the newly elected USA President and the Russian President.

– At the World Economic Forum’s virtual meeting, the President of Russia hailed the decision to extend the treaty as “a step in the right direction,” but also warned about the rising global rivalries and threats of new conflicts.

– The pact’s extension doesn’t require congressional approval in the USA, but Russian lawmakers must ratify the move and its President has to sign the relevant Bill into law.

– The New START Treaty is a treaty between the United States of America and the Russian Federation on Measures for the further reduction and limitation of strategic offensive arms.

– The term ‘strategic offensive arms’ applies to nuclear warheads deployed by Strategic Nuclear Delivery Vehicles (‘SNDVs’).

What are SNDVs?

– SNDVs are Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles (‘ICBMs’) with a range exceeding 5,500 kilometres, strategic bombers, warships (including strategic submarines) and cruise missiles, including air and sea-launched cruise missiles.

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