Insights Daily Current Affairs, 11 April 2018
Topic: Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.
Context: A rare dance panel of Nayak period and an inscribed pillar of Chola period have been found on an abandoned brick mound at Pathalapettai near Kiliyur in Tiruchi. Silappathikaram has references to such ritualistic performances by rural folks.
The dance panel:
- The dance panel is depicted on a stone slab that measures 1.21 metres in length and 33 centimetres in height.
- Four pairs of well dressed male and female dancers, holding some object in one of their hands, are seen engaged in a ritualistic dance in the panel. Three pairs are shown hugging each other while the last pair is dancing keeping a distance between.
- All of them are decked with ornaments and different head gears. The female deity with a flower in the right hand seen between the first two pairs and the pot depicted between the last two pairs denote the ritualistic nature of the dance.
About the pillar:
The pillar found at the spot has an inscribed base. The base has a Tamil inscription of Chola paleography with a few Grantha letters used in between. Though seven lines are visible, the last two are not readable. The inscription records that a certain Rejaladeviyar Sativinjey, queen of Iladevayan, had gifted that pillar. A sketchy figure of a Mugalinga is seen sculpted on the first half of the pillar, suggesting its conversion into a Linga.
- It is one of the Five Great Epics of Tamil Literature according to later Tamil literary tradition. A poet-prince from Kodungallur near Kochi, referred to by the pseudonym Ilango Adigal, is credited with this work.
- The epic revolves around Kannagi, who having lost her husband to a miscarriage of justice at the court of the Pandyan Dynasty, wreaks her revenge on his kingdom.
For Prelims: Silappatikaram.
Sources: the hindu.
Topic: Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.
National Company Law Appellate Tribunal
Context: Online search giant Google has filed an appeal at the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal against an order from India’s competition watchdog that found it guilty of “search bias” and abuse of its dominant position.
What’s the issue?
In February, the Competition Commission of India imposed a 1.36 billion rupees ($20.95 million) fine on Google, saying it was abusing its dominance in online web search and online search advertising markets, in the latest regulatory setback for the world’s most popular internet search engine.
- National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) was constituted under Section 410 of the Companies Act, 2013 for hearing appeals against the orders of National Company Law Tribunal(s) (NCLT), with effect from 1st June, 2016.
- NCLAT is also the Appellate Tribunal for hearing appeals against the orders passed by NCLT(s) under Section 61 of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (IBC).
- NCLAT is also the Appellate Tribunal for hearing appeals against the orders passed by Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India under Section 202 and Section 211 of IBC.
- NCLAT is also the Appellate Tribunal to hear and dispose of appeals against any direction issued or decision made or order passed by the Competition Commission of India (CCI).
The President of the Tribunal and the chairperson and Judicial Members of the Appellate Tribunal shall be appointed after consultation with the Chief Justice of India
The Members of the Tribunal and the Technical Members of the Appellate Tribunal shall be appointed on the recommendation of a Selection Committee consisting of:
- Chief Justice of India or his nominee—Chairperson.
- A senior Judge of the Supreme Court or a Chief Justice of High Court— Member.
- Secretary in the Ministry of Corporate Affairs—Member.
- Secretary in the Ministry of Law and Justice—Member.
- Secretary in the Department of Financial Services in the Ministry of Finance— Member.
For Prelims and Mains: All about NCLAT.
Sources: the hindu.
Topic: Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.
National Commission for Safai Karamcharis
Context: A new website a mobile app has been launched for the ‘National Commission for Safai Karamcharis’. The Mobile App will help the Commission in addressing the grievances/complaints of petitioners in an efficient manner.
- National Commission for Safai Karamcharis is an Indian statutory body was established through National Commission for Safai Karamcharis Act, 1993. It aims to promote and safeguard the interests and rights of Safai Karamcharis.
- The National Commission for Safai Karamcharis seeks to study, evaluate and monitor the implementation of various schemes for Safai Karamcharis as an autonomous organisation and also to provide redressal of their grievances.
- For Prelims: NCSK.
- For Mains: Mechanisms and institutions for the protection of vulnerable sections of the society.
Topic: Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.
Context: In order to address rising incidence of Vitamin ‘D’ Deficiencies (VDD), particularly amongst the young people, FSSAI has launched a unique initiative, ‘Project Dhoop’ in association with NCERT, NDMC and North MCD Schools.
About Project Dhoop:
Project Dhoop urges schools to shift their morning assembly to noon time, mainly between 11am and 1pm to ensure maximum absorption of Vitamin D in students through natural sunlight.
Significance of micronutrients for the body:
Micronutrients including vitamins are needed by people in only very small amounts, but these are the “magic wands” that enable the body to produce enzymes, hormones and other substances essential for proper growth and development. As tiny as the amounts are, the consequences of their absence are severe. Vitamin A, D, B12, Iron, Folic Acid and Iodine, are the most important; their lack represents a major threat to the health and development of populations the world over, particularly children and pregnant women in countries like India.
Most parts of India receive abundant sunshine all the year through. Yet shockingly, studies have found that more than 90% of boys and girls across various Indian cities are deficient in Vitamin D. In Delhi alone, 90-97% of school children (aged 6-17 years) have Vitamin ‘D’ Deficiencies (VDD) and around 10-11% of these children exhibit signs of VDD.
How to prevent Vitamin D deficiency in school children?
Vitamin D deficiency occurs due to overuse of sunscreen, wearing clothes that cover most of the skin, working all day in an air-conditioned atmosphere, and other factors. Also, the school uniforms needs to be designed in a way that at least face and arms are exposed to sunlight, which would be equivalent to 18 per cent of body surface, and the exposure has to be at least for 30-40 minutes.
Additionally, opting for fortified foods (with +F symbol) is a simple and inexpensive way to address micronutrient deficiencies without any radical change in behaviour or eating patterns.
- The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has been established under Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 which consolidates various acts & orders that have hitherto handled food related issues in various Ministries and Departments.
- It was created for laying down science based standards for articles of food and to regulate their manufacture, storage, distribution, sale and import to ensure availability of safe and wholesome food for human consumption.
- Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India is the Administrative Ministry for the implementation of FSSAI.
- The Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer of Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) are appointed by Government of India.
- The Chairperson is in the rank of Secretary to Government of India.
For Prelims and Mains: FSSAI, Vitamin D and its significance for the body, Project Dhoop.
Sources: the hindu.
Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
Mutual Recognition of Certificates of Competency of Seafarers
Context: India has signed an MoU with the Republic of Korea on Mutual Recognition of Certificates of Competency of Seafarers.
Significance of the MoU:
The MoU will pave way for recognition of maritime education and training, certificates of competency, endorsements, training documentary evidence and medical fitness certificates for seafarers issued by the Government of the other country in accordance with the provisions of Regulation 1/10 of the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) Convention, and cooperation between the two countries in training and management of seafarers.
About STCW convention:
The International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (or STCW), 1978 sets qualification standards for masters, officers and watch personnel on seagoing merchant ships.
- STCW was adopted in 1978 by conference at the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in London, and entered into force in 1984. The Convention was significantly amended in 1995.
- The 1978 STCW Convention was the first to establish basic requirements on training, certification and watchkeeping for seafarers on an international level.
- The Convention prescribes minimum standards relating to training, certification and watchkeeping for seafarers which countries are obliged to meet or exceed.
- One important feature of the Convention is that it applies to ships of non-party States when visiting ports of States which are Parties to the Convention.
- The Manila amendments to the STCW Convention and Code were adopted on 25 June 2010, marking a major revision of the STCW Convention and Code.
Topic: Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.
Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY)
Context: According to revised guidelines of the centre’s flagship scheme to promote organic farming, Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY), farmers will be eligible for an assistance of Rs48,700 per hectare for a three-year period for adopting these traditional methods of cultivation.
Who is eligible?
According to the revised guidelines, farmers practising traditional methods of organic farming like yogik farming, gou mata kheti, Vedic farming, Vaishnav kheti, Ahinsa farming, Adhvoot Shivanand farming, and rishi krishi will be eligible for financial assistance, in addition to those adopting standard organic farming practices like zero-budget natural farming and permaculture.
- Yogik farming refers to a system where it is believed that farmers can channelize cosmic energy to their fields by performing yoga.
- Rishi krishi is based on pre-Vedic, Vedic and medieval texts like Vishvavallava, Kashyapiyakrishisukti, and Surapala’s Vrikshayurveda.
- Gou mata kheti is a system of farming which uses cow dung and urine from indigenous breeds of lactating cows.
Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY):
Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana is an elaborated component of Soil Health Management (SHM) of major project National Mission of Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA).
- Under PKVY Organic farming is promoted through the adoption of the organic village by cluster approach and PGS certification.
- Fifty or more farmers will form a cluster having 50-acre land to take up the organic farming under the scheme.
- The produce will be pesticide residue free and will contribute to improving the health of the consumer.
Sources: the hindu.
Facts for Prelims:
Happy cities summit:
Context: The 2018 Happy Cities Summit is being held in Andhra Pradesh.
About the summit:
- The first ‘Happy Cities Summit: Amaravati 2018’ is a unique event bringing the best of minds in urban innovation across the world. While the Government of Andhra Pradesh is hosting it, the event partners are Dalberg, Confederation of Indian Industries, and Centre for Liveable Cities (Singapore).
- The Happy Cities Summit: Amaravati 2018 will be centered on the foundational principles of happy cities: ‘Citizen-centric governance’, ‘Liveable Communities’, ‘Clean & Healthy Environment’, and ‘Vibrant Economies’.
- Objective of the summit is to evolve a framework for thinking about and measuring ‘city happiness’ as well as a declaration and set of principles for guiding policy and action in the development of ‘happy cities’, especially relevant for cities in the developing world.
- Thinkers, designers, architects, planners, city leaders, and entrepreneurs will discuss and share best practices, innovations and ideas for enhancing societal happiness in the cities of the 21st century.