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UPSC News Diary Today 28-09-2022

UPSC News Diary Today” is every day published in the evening between 6-7 PM and contains all current affairs articles from the day on a single platform. ”UPSC News Diary Today” covers various topics from UPSC Syllabus and is very helpful and time managing for UPSC Aspirants. The framing of this daily current affairs compilation article is easy to read and understandable also.

In the ”UPSC News Diary Today” article, we focus on both UPSC Preliminary and Mains exam-oriented current affairs & prepare a gist of daily important news articles from leading National Newspapers, PIB, and other various official sources.

 

VSHORADS

 

What is VSHORADS?

  • DRDO conducted two successful test flight of Very Short Range Air Defence System (VSHORADS) missile on 27 Sep 2022 from a ground based portable launcher at the Integrated Test Range, Chandipur, off the coast of Odisha.
  • VSHORADS is a Man Portable Air Defence System (MANPAD) designed and developed indigenously by DRDO’s Research Centre Imarat (RCI), Hyderabad in collaboration with other DRDO laboratories and Indian Industry Partners.
  • VSHORADS missile incorporates many novel technologies including miniaturized Reaction Control System (RCS) and integrated avionics, which have been successfully proven during the tests.
  • The missile, meant for neutralizing low altitude aerial threats at short ranges is propelled by a dual thrust solid motor. The design of the missile including launcher has been highly optimized to ensure easy portability.

 

The Doctrine of Rarest of Rare

 

What is it?

  • Death Penalty in India has been restricted to the “rarest of rare” cases.
  • Yet, there are still various statutes that prescribe capital punishment despite the offences not being serious enough.
  • Section 121 (waging war against the state), section 302 (murder), section 364A (kidnapping with ransom), etc. of the Indian Penal Code 1860 and other provisions like The Commission of Sati (Prevention) Act 1987, Prevention of Terrorism Act 2002, etc. prescribe offences punishable with capital punishment.
  • The Doctrine of Rarest of Rare was established in the case of Bacchan v. State of Punjab.
  • The Supreme Court, in this case, endeavoured to cut out a doctrine particularly for offences culpable with death to decrease the ambiguity for courts regarding when to go for the highest punishment of the land.
  • By the majority of 4 to 1, the constitutionality of death penalty was upheld by the Supreme Court and a principle was laid down that death penalty must be surrounded only in the “rarest of rare cases.
  • The most common cases involving major death row convicts are terrorism and rape-cum murder cases.

 

Mankading

 

What is Mankading?

  • The term comes from the name of the legendary former Indian cricketer Vinoo Mankad.
  • In 1947, when India were playing a series in Australia, Mankad dismissed opposition batsman Bill Brown twice by taking off the bails at the non-striker’s end before releasing the ball.
  • Mankad was attacked for allegedly violating the “spirit of cricket”, but he had run Brown out only after he had warned him against backing up too far ahead. Even though the name “Mankading” stuck, Sunil Gavaskar has referred to it as “Browned”.
  • Mankad received support from the great Don Bradman himself, who was then captain of Australia.
  • In March this year, the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), custodian of the Laws of Cricket, accepted Mankading as a normal mode of running out the non-striker, removing it from Law 41 (Unfair play) and clubbing it with Law 38 (Run out).

 

Surjapuri and Bajjika dialects

 

What are the Surjapuri and Bajjika dialects?

  • Surjapuri is spoken mainly in Kishanganj and other parts of Seemanchal in northeastern Bihar, including the districts of Katihar, Purnia and Araria.
  • The dialect, a mix of Bangla, Urdu, and Hindi, is also spoken in contiguous parts of West Bengal.
  • The name Surjapuri comes from Surjapur pargana, which no longer exists. But there is a toll plaza called Surjapur between Purnia and Kishanganj.
  • Although Surjapuri has nothing specifically to do with religion, the largest share of speakers of the language is made up of Surjapuri Muslims, who live mainly in Kishanganj, the district that has about 70 per cent Muslim population.

 

New Foreign Trade Policy

 

New Foreign Trade Policy- Relevance for UPSC Exam

General Studies III- Indian Economy

New Foreign Trade Policy- In News

The government has extended the launch of new Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) (2022-27) by six more months and would continue with the existing one.

New Foreign Trade Policy: The Delay

  • The geo-political situation is not suitable for long-term foreign trade policy, said Union Commerce Minister.
  • Currently, fears of a recession in major economies like the US and Europe have escalated a panic among investors.
  • Foreign investors have begun to pull back their money from equities.
  • The US Dollar is at a 22-year high, while the Rupee hit a new all-time low of $81.6.
  • The trade deficit widened by more than 2-folds to $125.22 billion (April – August 2022) compared to $53.78 billion in the same period last year.

What is a Foreign Trade Policy?

  • India’s Foreign Trade Policy (FTP) is a set of guidelines for goods and services imported and exported.
  • These are developed by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), the Ministry of Commerce and Industry’s regulating body for the promotion and facilitation of exports and imports.
  • FTPs are enforceable under the Foreign Trade Development and Regulation Act 1992.

India’s Foreign Trade Policy

  • In line with the ‘Make in India,’ ‘Digital India,’ ‘Skill India,’ ‘Startup India,’ and ‘Ease of Doing Business initiatives, the Foreign Trade Policy (2015-20) was launched on April 1, 2015.
  • It provides a framework for increasing exports of goods and services, creating jobs, and increasing value addition in the country.
  • The FTP statement outlines the market and product strategy as well as the steps needed to promote trade, expand infrastructure, and improve the entire trade ecosystem.
  • It aims to help India respond to external problems while staying on top of fast-changing international trading infrastructure and to make trade a major contributor to the country’s economic growth and development.

Issues with FTP (2015-2020)

  • Acting on Washington’s protest, a WTO dispute settlement panel ruled in 2019 that India’s export subsidy measures are in violation of WTO norms and must be repealed.
  • Tax incentives under the popular Merchandise Exports from India Scheme (MEIS) (now renamed as RODTEP Scheme) and Service Exports from India Scheme (SEIS) programmes were among them.
  • The panel found that because India’s per capita gross national product exceeds $1,000 per year, it may no longer grant subsidies based on export performance.

Way forward

  • With incentives under MEIS and SEIS in the cloud, WTO-compliant tax benefits are a must.
  • Credit availability has long been a need of exporters, particularly MSMEs.
  • China’s network of ports, motorways, and high-speed trains, which are among the greatest in the world, is one of the reasons it is a manufacturing and export powerhouse.
  • India requires innovative trading procedures as a result of Covid-19 breaking old supply channels.

 

Swachh Toycathon

 

Swachh Toycathon- Relevance for UPSC Exam

  • GS Paper 2: Governance, Administration and Challenges
    • Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

UPSC News Diary Today 28-09-2022 -_3.1

 

Swachh Toycathon in News

  • Recently, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) has launched Swachh Toycathon under the National Action Plan for Toys.
  • Secretary, MoHUA, Mr. Manoj Joshi launched the Swachh Toycathon by unveiling the online platform on MyGov portal and releasing the toolkit.

 

Swachh Toycathon

  • About: Swachh Toycathon is a competition for new ideas to transform waste into toys.
    • Swachh Toycathon competition is being launched under the ‘Swachh Amrit Mahotsav’.
  • Mandate: Swachh Toycathon aims to the toy industry environment friendly, and a step towards achieving circularity in toy sector.
    • The Swachh Toycathon competition seeks to explore solutions for use of waste in creation or manufacturing of toys.
  • Participation: The Swachh Toycathon is a national competition for individuals and groups.
  • Themes: It is based on three broad themes-
    • FUN & LEARN: It seeks ideas for design and early prototype of toys from waste at home, workplace and surroundings,
    • USE & ENJOY: It seeks ideas for design and models of games and play in the park/open spaces made from waste and
    • NEW & OLD: It seeks ideas/solutions/working models for circularity in toy industry.
  • Assessment Criteria: The assessment criteria will be based on-
    • Novelty of Idea
    • Design
    • Safety
    • Usage of Waste Material
    • Scalability and Replicability
    • Future Waste and climate and social implications.
  • Organisers: Swachh Toycathon is being organized by the Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs.
    • The Center for Creative Learning, IIT Gandhinagar is MoHUA’s Knowledge Partner for the initiative, they will be providing support on aspects of pedagogy and creativity.

What is Swachh Amrit Mahotsav?

  • Swachh Amrit Mahotsav is a fortnight of activities to galvanize action around Swachhata from 17th 2022, Seva Diwas, till 2ndOct. 2022, Swachhata Diwas.

India’s Toy Industry

  • The Toy Industry in India has historically been import dependent. Lack of raw-material, technology, design capability etc. led to huge imports of Toys and its components.
  • In 2018-19, Toys worth USD 371 Mn (Rs. 2960 cr.) were imported into our country.  A large proportion of these toys were unsafe, substandard, counterfeit, and cheap.
  • To address the import of low-quality and hazardous toys and to enhance domestic manufacturing of toys, several strategic interventions have been taken by government.
  • Some key initiatives include increase of Basic Custom Duty from 20% to 60%, implementation of Quality Control Order, mandatory sample testing of imported toys, granting more than 850 BIS licenses to domestic toy manufacturers, development of toy clusters etc.
  • Several promotional initiatives including The India Toy Fair 2021, Toycathon 2021, Toy Business League 2022 were conducted to promote indigenous toys to encourage innovation and new-age design to suit global requirements.

 

Toy Industry Boom in India

 

Death Penalty

 

Death Penalty- Relevance for UPSC Exam

General Studies II- Executive and Judiciary

Death Penalty: In News

The Supreme Court has said that fundamental aspects of death penalty sentencing need re-examination.

A three-judge bench acknowledged that there are serious problems in India’s death penalty regime, indicating that the current state of death penalty sentencing is untenable.

What is Death Penalty?

  • The death penalty, also known as capital punishment, is the harshest form of punishment available under any criminal law in existence anywhere in the world.
  • It should be distinguished from extrajudicial executions carried out without due process of law.
  • The term death penalty is sometimes used interchangeably with capital punishment, though imposition of the penalty is not always followed by execution, because of the possibility of commutation to life imprisonment.

Death Penalty: Historical Background

  • In Jagmohan Singh vs State of UP’ (1973), then in ‘Rajendra Prasad vs State of UP’ (1979), and finally in ‘Bachan Singh vs State of Punjab’ (1980)the Supreme Court affirmed the constitutional validity of the death penalty.
  • It said that if capital punishment is provided in the law and the procedure is a fair, just and reasonable one, the death sentence can be awarded to a convict.
  • This will, however, only be in the “rarest of rare” cases, and the courts should render “special reasons” while sending a person to the gallows.

Death Penalty: Sentencing

  • The term “Capital Punishment” stands for most severe form of punishment.
  • It is the punishment which is to be awarded for the most heinous, grievous and detestable crimes against humanity.
  • While the definition and extent of such crimes vary, the implication of capital punishment has always been the death sentence.

Death Penalty: International framework

  • ICCPR:
  • Despite the fact that the death penalty was still in practice in the majority of countries in the early 1960s, the drafters of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) have already begun efforts to have it abolished in international law.
  • Although Article 6 of the ICCPR allows for the use of the death penalty in restricted circumstances, it also states that nothing in this Article shall be invoked to delay or hinder any State Party to the present Covenant from abolishing capital punishment.
  • The ICCPR’s Second Optional Protocol aims to abolish the death penalty.
  • UN ECOSOC:
  • The UN Economic and Social Council enacted Safeguards in 1984, ensuring that persons facing the death penalty have their rights protected.
  • The UN General Assembly ratified the Second Optional Protocol to the ICCPR in 1989, 33 years after the adoption of the Covenant itself, giving abolition a powerful fresh boost. Members of the Protocol’s signatories pledged not to execute anyone within their domains.
  • Resolutions of the United Nations General Assembly:
  • The General Assembly urged states to observe international standards that protect the rights of persons facing the death sentence in a series of resolutions enacted in 2007, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016, and 2018, and to gradually reduce the number of offences punishable by death.
  • The UN General Assembly ratified the Second Optional Protocol to the ICCPR in 1989, giving abolition a powerful fresh boost.
  • Members of Protocol’s signatories pledged not to execute anyone within their domains.

Why death penalty should be abolished?

  • Innocent execution: Innocent individuals have been executed in the past and will continue to be executed in the future. Between 2000 and 2014, the Supreme Court and high courts acquitted a fifth of individuals sentenced to death by trial courts.
  • Arbitrariness: The possibility of the death penalty being applied arbitrarily cannot be ruled out. According to the National Law University Delhi’s Death Penalty India Report 2016 (DPIR), approximately 75% of all convicts sentenced to death in India are from socio-economically underprivileged categories, such as Dalits, OBCs, and religious minorities.
  • Eye for an eye:Reformative justice is more productive, that innocent people are often killed in the search for retribution, and that “an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.
  • Deterrence is a myth:Death penalty is not a deterrent to capital crimes state that there is no evidence to support the claim that the penalty is a deterrent.

Conclusion

  • The death penalty is one of the most controversial issues in the world, and it is a topic that is constantly being debated. Over 70% of the world’s countries have abolished capital punishment in law or practice. New appropriate regulations should be created to ensure the successful execution of alternatives to capital punishment, as well as advice from professionals.

 

Rotterdam Convention

 

Rotterdam Convention- Relevance for UPSC Exam

General Studies III- Awareness in The Fields Of It, Space, Computers, Robotics, Nano-Technology, Bio-Technology, Pharma Sector & Health Science.

Rotterdam Convention: In News

International trade of two new hazardous pesticides — Iprodione and Terbufos — has been recommended for “prior informed consent” (PIC) procedure under the Rotterdam convention.

  • In India, the use of these chemicals was permitted by the 2015 Anupam Verma committee report. The country is among the largest exporters of Terbufos.
  • The chemicals are dangerous for humans and aquatic animals.

Rotterdam Convention

  • The Rotterdam Convention is formally known as the Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade.
  • It is a multilateral treaty to promote shared responsibilities in relation to importation of hazardous chemicals.
  • The convention promotes open exchange of information and calls on exporters of hazardous chemicals to use proper labelling, include directions on safe handling, and inform purchasers of any known restrictions or bans.
  • Signatory nations can decide whether to allow or ban the importation of chemicals listed in the treaty, and exporting countries are obliged to make sure that producers within their jurisdiction comply.
  • India is a party to the convention, with 161 other parties.

Rotterdam Convention: Prior Informed Consent (PIC) procedure

  • The PIC procedure is a mechanism for formally obtaining and disseminating the decisions of importing parties on their willingness to receive future shipments of hazardous chemicals.
  • The PIC procedure is a mechanism for formally obtaining and disseminating the decisions of importing Parties as to whether they wish to receive future shipments of those chemicals listed in the Convention.
  • For each of the chemicals listed in Annex III and subject to the PIC procedure a decision guidance document (DGD) is prepared and sent to all Parties.
  • All Parties are required to take a decision as to whether or not they will allow future import of each of the chemicals in Annex III of the Convention.
  • These decisions are known as import responses.

Rotterdam Convention: The new chemicals

  • Iprodione, a fungicide used on vines, fruits, trees and vegetables, has been classified as carcinogenic and toxic for reproduction.
  • Terbufos is a soil insecticide used commonly on sorghum, maize, beet and potatoes. It has also been found to pose risk to aquatic organisms due to its toxicity.
  • Both pesticides, which are used in agriculture, are known for their harmful impacts on human health and the environment.

India-UAE CEPA

 

India-UAE CEPA- Relevance for UPSC Exam

  • GS Paper 2: International Relations- Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

India-UAE CEPA in News

  • Recently, government informed that, the India-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) which came into effect on the 1st of May 2022 is already creating a significant positive impact on India-UAE trade.

Impact of India-UAE CEPA on India-UAE Trade

  • Indian exports to the UAE, excluding petroleum products grew from US$ 5.17 billion during June-August 2021 to US$ 5.92 billion during June-August 2022, which denotes an increase of 14%.
  • It is pertinent to note that India’s global non-petroleum exports during the same period (Jun-Aug 2022) grew by 3% on an annual basis.
    • This implies the growth rate of India’s non-petroleum exports to the UAE is almost 5 times as that of India’s non-petroleum exports to the world.
  • Excluding petroleum related imports, Indian imports from the UAE during the same three-month period grew from US$ 5.56 billion (June-August 2021) to US$ 5.61 billion (June-August 2022) or an increase of 1% in percentage terms.

India’s Export Growth Trajectory in Recent Past

  • India’s non-oil export growth of around 14% on year-on-year basis comes in the context of significant macroeconomic headwinds such as-
    • Conflict in Ukraine,
    • COVID-19 related lockdowns in China,
    • Rising inflationary pressures,
    • Expected Policy tightening in advanced economies,
    • Global growth slowdown and consequent reduced demand,
    • Reduction in global merchandize trade (growth slowed down to 3.2% in Q1 2022 vis-a-vis 5.7% in Q4 2021) etc.

India-UAE CEPA: Key Features

  • Tariff Reduction: India-UAE FTA is set to reduce tariffs for 80 per cent of goods and give zero-duty access to 90 per cent of India’s exports to the UAE.
    • Annual exports worth about $26 billion from India that currently attract a 5-per cent import duty in the UAE are set to benefit.
  • Scope: The India-UAE CEPA agreement covers areas including-
    • Goods,
    • Services,
    • Rules of origin,
    • Customs procedures,
    • Government procurement,
    • Intellectual property rights, and
    • E-commerce.
  • Rules of Origin: India-UAE CEPA includes robust rules of origin to protect both economies from misuse of the agreement by third countries, including a requirement of “melt and pour” for steel exports to qualify as domestically produced products from either country.
  • Safeguard Mechanism: The agreement also provides a permanent safeguard mechanism to protect businesses in both countries to prevent “any unnecessary or unwarranted surge in volumes of (imports) any particular product
  • Speedy Regulatory Approval for Medical Products: Under the India-UAE CEPA, the UAE agreed to facilitate market access and regulatory approval within 90 days for Indian pharmaceutical products and medical products.
    • This facility is available to the products that have been approved in developed jurisdictions such as the US, the UK, the EU, Canada and Australia.
  • Focus on Technology and Sustainability: Technology, digital trade and sustainability have a big focus in the New India-UAE partnership.
  • An MoU among APEDA, DP World & Al Dahra on the UAE side regarding the “Food Security Corridor Initiative” has been prepared, under which India will be able to play an important role in food security of the UAE.

 

India-UAE CEPA | India-UAE Signed Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement

 

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