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Insights Daily Current Affairs + PIB: 10 September 2019

Insights Daily Current Affairs + PIB: 10 September 2019

Table of contents:

GS Paper 2:

  1. India Iodine Survey 2018- 19 report.
  2. UN Peacekeeping.


GS Paper 3:

  1. Pradhan Mantri Kisan Maan Dhan Yojana.
  2. National Animal Disease Control Programme (NADCP).
  3. African Swine Fever (ASF).
  4. Single-use plastic ban.


Facts for prelims:

  1. Hurricane Dorian.
  2. India-Nepal petroleum pipeline.
  3. ‘ANGAN’- International Conference on Energy Efficiency in Building Sector.



GS Paper 2:

Topics Covered:

Issues related to health.

India Iodine Survey 2018- 19 report


What to study?

For Prelims: Key findings of the report- top performers, bottom performers.

For Mains: Need for and significance of iodised salt, variations across states and what needs to be done?


Context: India Iodine Survey report has been released.

  1. The survey was conducted by Nutrition International in collaboration with the AIIMS and the Indian Coalition for the Control of Iodine Deficiency Disorders (ICCIDD).
  2. The survey tested the iodine content in samples of cooking salt from households to estimate the coverage of iodised salt.
  3. Iodised salt is salt with at least 15 parts per million of iodine.


Key findings:

  1. Gujarat produces 71% of salt in the country, followed by Rajasthan at 17% and Tamil Nadu at 11%.
  2. 76.3% of Indian households consumed adequately iodised salt.
  3. Tamil Nadu (61.9%) has the lowest consumption of iodized salt despite being the third biggest producer of salt in the country.
  4. It is followed by Andhra Pradesh (63.9%), Rajasthan (65.5%), Odisha (65.8%) and Jharkhand (68.8%).
  5. Only 13 out of 36 States have achieved Universal Salt Iodisation or have 90% of households with access to adequately iodised salt.


Regional various:

  1. The northeastern States are doing very well with respect to iodised salt consumption at the household level because of the distance they have from the three salt producing centres — Gujarat, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu.
  2. By and large most States get their salt from Gujarat and Rajasthan.
  3. Salt-producing States have access to common (or non-iodised) salt and, therefore, they start consuming it since it is readily available.


Need for and significance of Iodised Salt:

  1. Iodine is a vital micro-nutrient for optimal mental and physical development of human beings.
  2. Deficiency of iodine can result in a range of disabilities and disorders such as goitre, hypothyroidism, cretinism, abortion, still births, mental retardation and psychomotor defects.


Sources: the Hindu.

Topics Covered:

Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.


UN Peacekeeping


What to study?

For Prelims and Mains: About UN Peacekeeping- need, significance, challenges and operations in place.


Context: India calls for reforms in peacekeeping at UNSC debate.


Need for reforms:

Peacekeeping currently is in a “no-man’s land” between trying to keep the peace in fragile environments and trying to enforce the maintenance of peace, where there is none to keep.

There is not effective improvement of the cooperation between Troop Contributing Countries (TCCs), the Security Council and the Secretariat.


Need of the hour:

  1. Reform peacekeeping based on incentivisation, innovation and institutionalisation.
  2. Incentivise women peacekeepers. As of July 31, women peacekeepers constituted 6 per cent. There are 5,243 female peacekeepers, out of a total of 86,687 peacekeepers.
  3. Innovative options such as co-deployment of peacekeepers from different countries engenders a genuine spirit of partnership for peace and needs to be promoted.
  4. There is need for expansion of online initiatives to develop capacities of future commanders and managers so that they lead by example and raise awareness of UN standards of conduct among their personnel is another innovation that can be further promoted.


What is peacekeeping? It’s significance?

United Nations Peacekeeping was created in 1948. Its first mission involved the establishment of the UN Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO), which served to observe and maintain ceasefire during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War.


  1. United Nations Peacekeeping helps countries torn by conflict create conditions for lasting peace.
  2. Peacekeeping has proven to be one of the most effective tools available to the UN to assist host countries navigate the difficult path from conflict to peace.
  3. Peacekeeping has unique strengths, including legitimacy, burden sharing, and an ability to deploy and sustain troops and police from around the globe, integrating them with civilian peacekeepers to advance multidimensional mandates.


UN Peacekeeping is guided by three basic principles:

  1. Consent of the parties.
  2. Impartiality
  3. Non-use of force except in self-defence and defence of the mandate.


Global partnership:

UN peacekeeping is a unique global partnership. It brings together the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Secretariat, troop and police contributors and the host governments in a combined effort to maintain international peace and security. Its strength lies in the legitimacy of the UN Charter and in the wide range of contributing countries that participate and provide precious resources.


Sources: the Hindu.



GS Paper 3:

Topics Covered:

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.


Pradhan Mantri Kisan Maan Dhan Yojana


What to study?

For Prelims and Mains: The scheme- features, significance, need and potential?


Context: PM Modi to launch Kisan Man Dhan Yojana.


Aim: To improve the life of small and marginal farmers of the country.


Salient features of the scheme:

  1. The scheme is voluntary and contributory for farmers in the entry age group of 18 to 40 years.
  2. monthly pension of Rs. 3000/– will be provided to them on attaining the age of 60 years. The spouse is also eligible to get a separate pension of Rs.3000/- upon making separate contributions to the Fund.
  3. Initial contribution: The farmers will have to make a monthly contribution of Rs.55 to Rs.200, depending on their age of entry, in the Pension Fund till they reach the retirement date i.e. the age of 60 years.
  4. The Central Government will also make an equal contributionof the same amount in the pension fund.
  5. The Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) shall be the Pension Fund Managerand responsible for Pension pay out.
  6. If there is no spouse, then total contribution along with interest will be paid to the nominee.
  7. If the farmer dies after the retirement date, the spouse will receive 50% of the pension as Family Pension.
  8. After the death of both the farmer and the spouse, the accumulated corpus shall be credited back to the Pension Fund.
  9. The beneficiaries may opt voluntarily to exit the Scheme after a minimum period of 5 years of regular contributions.
  10. In case of default in making regular contributions, the beneficiaries are allowed to regularize the contributions by paying the outstanding dues along with prescribed interest.


Need for and Significance of the scheme:

It is expected that at least 10 crore labourers and workers in the unorganised sector will avail the benefit of the scheme within next five years making it one of the largest pension schemes of the world.


Sources: pib.

Topics Covered:

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.


National Animal Disease Control Programme (NADCP)


What to study?

For Prelims: Key features of NADCP, About FMD and Brucellosis.

For Mains: Need for interventions, concerns associated and significance of such programmes.


Context: The government is all set to launch the National Animal Disease Control Programme (NADCP).

Aim: To eradicate Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) and Brucellosis in the livestock.

About National Disease Control Programme:

Objectives of the programme:

  • To Vaccinate more than 500 Million Livestock including cattle, buffalo, sheep, goats and pigs against Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD).
  • To Vaccinate 36 Million Female Bovine Calves annually in its fight against Brucellosis disease.



  1. Controlling of diseases by 2025.
  2. Eradication of by 2030.



100% funding from Central Government, of Rs.12,652 Crores for a period of 5 years till 2024.



The disease of FMD and brucellosis are common among livestock such as- cow, buffaloes, bulls, pigs, sheep and goats. Both the diseases have a direct negative impact on trade of milk and other livestock products.

  1. If a cow or buffalo gets infected with FMD, the milk loss is up to 100% which could last for4-6 months.
  2. In case of Brucellosis, the milk output reduces by 30% during entire life cycle of animal and also causes infertility among animals.
  3. Also, the infection of brucellosis can also be transmitted to farm workers and livestock owners.


Sources: pib.

Topics Covered:

Economics of animal rearing.

African Swine Fever (ASF)


What to study?

For Prelims and mains: The Disease, spread, symptoms and concerns.


Context: ASF outbreak has been sweeping through swine populations in China, leading to massive mass cullings and a subsequent increase in the price of the country’s favourite protein.



ASF has been seen in other Asian countries as well. Most recently, the Philippines had to cull more than 7,000 pigs to arrest the spread of ASF.


About African Swine Fever (ASF):

  1. ASF is a highly contagious and fatal animal disease that infects domestic and wild pigs, typically resulting in an acute form of hemorrhagic fever.
  2. It was first detected in Africa in the 1920s.
  3. The mortality is close to 100 per cent, and since the fever has no cure, the only way to stop it spreading is by culling the animals.
  4. ASF is not a threat to human beings since it only spreads from animals to other animals.
  5. According to the FAO, “its extremely high potential for transboundary spread has placed all the countries in the region in danger and has raised the spectre of ASF once more escaping from Africa. It is a disease of growing strategic importance for global food security and household income”.


Sources: the Hindu.

Topics Covered:

Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.


Single-use plastic ban


What to study?

For Prelims and Mains: Ban on single- use plastics- significance.


Context: Single-use plastic items will be banned in India from October 2, 2019.


What is single-use plastic?

A form of plastic that is disposable, which is only used once and then has to be thrown away or recycled.

The single-use plastic items include plastic bags, water bottles, soda bottles, straws, plastic plates, cups, most food packaging and coffee stirrers.


Why is it being banned?

With climate and environment becoming a rising global concern, plastic pollution and plastic waste management have become the focal point of worry.

Millions of tons of plastic is being produced every year, which is not biodegradable. Hence, the countries across the globe are adopting and implementing strategies aimed at eliminating the use of single-use plastic.


India’s efforts:

India has won global acclaim for its “Beat Plastic Pollution” resolve declared on World Environment Day last year, under which it pledged to eliminate single-use plastic by 2022.


Challenges ahead:

The ubiquitous plastic has made humans so dependent that it is virtually impossible to live without it.

The PWM Rules Amendment, 2018, omitted explicit pricing of plastic bags that had been a feature of the 2016 Rules.

Waste plastic from packaging of everything from food, cosmetics and groceries to goods delivered by online platforms remains unaddressed.

The fast moving consumer goods sector that uses large volumes of packaging, posing a higher order challenge.

Lack of adequate infrastructure for segregation and collection is the key reason for inefficient plastic waste disposal.

Small producers of plastics are facing the ban, while more organised entities covered by the Extended Producer Responsibility clause continue with business as usual.


Need of the hour:

  1. Promoting the use of biodegradable plastics, khadi bags, cotton bags.
  2. Incentivising collection.
  3. Start charging the producers for their waste, which will lead to recovery and recycling.


Sources: the Hindu.


Facts for Prelims:


Hurricane Dorian:

Context: India has announced an immediate humanitarian assistance of $1 million to help people in The Bahamas affected by Hurricane Dorian.


  • Hurricane Dorian has caused a large scale destruction in The Bahamas.
  • It was an extremely powerful and destructive Category 5 hurricane. It was the first major hurricane of 2019 Atlantic hurricane season.

India-Nepal petroleum pipeline:

Motihari-Amalekhgunj petroleum pipeline will transport fuel from Barauni refinery in Bihar’s Begusarai district to Amalekhgunj in southeastern Nepal, situated across the border from Raxaul in East Champaran district.

The 69-km pipeline will drastically reduce the cost of transporting fuel to landlocked Nepal from India.


‘ANGAN’- International Conference on Energy Efficiency in Building Sector:

The recently held international conference, ANGAN (Augmenting Nature by Green Affordable New-habitat), focussed on Energy Efficiency in Building Sector.

  • Organised by the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), Ministry of Power, Government of India in collaboration with GIZ under the Indo German Technical Cooperation.
  • It’s aim is to provide a platform to deliberate on interdependence between organizations, systemic sustainability and feedback loops for better resource efficiency.