Sarat Chandra IAS Academy

Current Affairs – 6th July 2023



Today Topics List:

  1. Alluri Sita Rama Raju

  2. Rajasthan Proposes Life imprisonment to curb question paper leaks

  3. Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO)


  5. Time Dilation in early Universe

  6. State of Science Research In India

  7. SOP to curb pollution at hospitals



Alluri Sita Rama Raju

    • During the closing ceremony of the 125th Birth anniversary of the freedom Fighter Shri Alluri Sita Rama Raju, President Of India, Draupadi Murmu describes Alluri Sitarama Raju’s struggle against injustice and exploitation as a proud chapter in India’s freedom struggle.
      • She says, the character of Alluri Sitaram Raju is an example of uniting society without any discrimination based on caste or class.
      • Working selflessly and fearlessly for the well being of the deprived sections of society is the message to be drawn from his life.



Rajasthan Proposes Life imprisonment to curb question paper leaks

    • The Government of Rajasthan decided to introduce a stringent law to prevent recruitment exam paper leaks by enhancing the maximum punishment for the offence from current 10 years to life imprisonment.
      • In addition to this step will be taken to ensure transparency in holding competitive examinations
  • ***Disqualification and the role of Speaker, will be provider in a comprehensive manner as the crisis of Maharashtra assembly unfolds further.***



Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO)

    • A virtual summit of SCO chaired by Indian Prime Minister was held on 4th of July, 2023. India is hosting the summit for the first time.
      • The SCO grouping now comprises of China, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistanand Uzbekistan.
      • The induction of Iran into the grouping as the 9th and the latest member signifies the formation of a “more representative” and multi polar world order, which is in the global interest.

Shanghai Cooperation Organsiation:

  • The Shanghai Cooperation Organization(SCO) is an intergovernmental organization founded in Shanghai on 15 June 2001. 
  • The SCO currently comprises eight Member States (China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Pakistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan), + Iran ( inducted as a full member now.)
    • Observer States interested in acceding to full membership (Afghanistan, Belarus, and Mongolia) and
    • six “Dialogue Partners” (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Turkey).
    • In 2021, the decision was made to start the accession process of Iran to the SCO as a full member, and Egypt, Qatar as well as Saudi Arabia became dialogue partners. 
  • Since its inception in 2001, the SCO has mainly focused on regional security issues, its fight against regional terrorism, ethnic separatism, and religious extremism.
    • The SCO has been an observer in the UN General Assembly since 2005.
    • In April 2010, the UN and SCO Secretariats signed a Joint Declaration on Cooperation.
    • SCO Secretariat has also established partnerships with the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), and the International Organization for Migration (IOM),
    • It has an ongoing cooperation with the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and the UN Office on Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT).

Agreements signed: New Delhi declaration:

      • Outlining areas of cooperation between SCO countries
      • A joint statement on countering radicalisation and the one on digital transformation, where India offered to share expertise on digital payment interface.
      • In a reference to sanctions of Russia and Iran, SCO members jointly criticised non- UN sanctions as “incompatible with the principles of international law”, which have a negative impact on other countries.
      • SCO members also agreed to explore the use of “national currencies” for payments within the grouping, which would circumvent international dollar based payments.
      • The Delhi declaration also listed a number of global challenges, including new and emerging conflicts, turbulence in the markets, supply chain instability, climate change and the Covid 19 pandemic.
  • However, the declaration noted that only “interested member states” signed the economic strategy statement, while leaving India out of the paragraphs supporting China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).
    • India opposes the BRI over its inclusion of projects in Pakistan occupied Kashmir.
    • “Better connectivity only enhances mutual trade but also fosters mutual trust. However, in these efforts, it is essential to uphold the basic principles of the SCO charter, particularly respecting the sovereignty and regional integrity of the member states,” Said PM Modi.
  • Chinese President marked the 10th anniversary of the BRI and mentioned his new global security initiative (GSI) calling for encouraging political settlement of international and regional hotspots so as to forge a solid security shield in the region.




    • Singapore Exchange (SGX) NIFTY, rechristened as GIFT NIFTY, has started trading from GIFT City in Gujarat executing over 30,000 trades in a single session.
      • This is the first cross border initiative in connecting India and Singapore’s capital markets.

Why the Name?

  • As the trading on SGX NIFTY ceased in Singapore and the entire trading volume and liquidity fully switched to GIFT IFSC, the name was changed as GIFT NIFTY.
    • Currently, under GIFT NIFTY four products are being offered:
      • GIFT Nifty 50
      • GIFT Nifty Bank
      • GIFT Nifty Financial Services
      • GIFT Nifty IT derivatives contract.

Deal between SGX and NSE (National Stock Exchange):

  • A five year contract has been signed between the two, where the business will largely be shared on a 50:50 basis.
    • Initially, SGX will get 75% of the revenue, while NSE gets the remaining 25%
    • For any business generated by the International financial Service Centre (IFSC) – which is currently very little in volume – NSE will keep 75% of the business.
    • Once a threshold volume is touched, sharing will be on a 50:50 basis for both the entities.



Time Dilation in early Universe

    • 3 Billion years ago, when the universe was roughly a tenth its present age, scientists by observing a ferocious class of black holes called Quasars demonstrated “time dilation” in the early Universe, showing how time then passed only about a fifth as quickly as it does today.


  • Quasars – among the brightest objects in the universe were used as a clock in the study to measure time in the deep past.
  • Quasars are tremendously active supermassive blackholes millions to billions of times more massive than our sun.
  • They usually reside at centres of the galaxies.
  • They devour matter drawn to them by their immense gravitational pull and unleash torrents of radiation including jets of high energy particles, while a glowing disc of matter spins around


  • In observing brightness of 190 quasars across the universe dating to about 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang event that gave rise to cosmos.
    • Comparing the brightness of these quasars at various wavelengths to that of quasars existing today.
    • They found that certain fluctuations that occur in a particular amount of time today did so five times more slowly in the most ancient quasars.
  • Einstein in his General Theory of relativity, showed that time and space are intertwined and that universe has been expanding outward in all directions since the big Bang.
    • This continual expansion explains how time flowed more slowly earlier in the Universe’s history relative to today.
  • Ex: A second back then would unfold in five seconds now. i.e 1 second in the past = 5 seconds today.
    • Scientists previously documented time dilation dating to roughly 7 billion years ago, based on observations of stellar explosions called Supernovas.

In Modern Physics, time is a complicated thing, as we don’t really understand time and its limitation, and some things such as time travel, warp drives etc., are still not ruled out. The study of time can make future very exciting.


State of Science Research In India

    • The Government has approved National research Foundation last week. It is being widely welcomed by the scientific community.
      • It has the potential to single handedly, address a whole range of deficiencies in India’s Scientific research sector.

Need for such a move:

  • With a huge pool of Science and Engineering graduates, a large network of laboratories and research institutions, and active involvement in some of the frontline areas of scientific research, India usually is considered a leading country with deep scientific capabilities.
    • However, in comparative terms, India lags behind several countries, some with much more limited resources, on a variety of research indicators.


Issues in research Sector

Expenditure on R&D :

  • For more than two decades, centre’s stated objective has been to allocate at least 2% of the National GDP on R&D.
    • This objective has not been met and in fact the expenditure on scientific research has been reduced from 0.8% at the start of the millennium to about 0.65% now. Which remained stagnant for the last decade.
  • This does not mean money for research has not increased. Spending tripled from Rs.39,437 crore in 2007-08 to over 1.27 lakh crore in 2020-21. But, India’s GDP has grown faster, and so the share of research has gone down.
    • At least 37 countries spend more than 1% of their GDP on R&D in 2018, according to UNESCO Science report 2021.
    • Globally, about 1.79% of world GDP is spent on R&D. Unlike in India, at Global level, growth in R&D expenditure has outpaced GDP growth.
  • Government said, India’s expenditure on R&D in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms in 2018 – $68 billion was 6th highest in the world.
    • However, India was far behind, Both China and US spent more that US $500 billion that year.
    • India spent only 42 US dollars per researcher in 2020, compared with 2,150 by Israel, 2,180 by South Korea and 2,183 by US.


Research In Universities:

  • India has more than 40000 institutions of higher education, mostly colleges out of which 1,200 are full-fledged universities.
    • Only 1 % of these engage in active research, according to detailed project report on NRF.
    • While comparative numbers are not available for other countries, It is common knowledge that in most leading countries, universities are the centres of research and developmental activities.
  • NRF will make a great difference in this aspect in coupling education and research, as there were 7,888 R&D institutions in the country in 2021 as per Department of Science and Technology (DST), including more than 5,200 units in the private sector and industries, which engage mainly in industry specific research.

Research Output:

  • India produced more than 25,550 doctorates in 2020-21, of which 14,983 were in science and engineering disciplines.
    • This is 59% proportion in the overall doctorates compares well with other countries, putting India in 7th Rank overall.
    • In absolute terms, Indi’s annual output of science and engineering doctorates is right at the top, with only US, China and UK producing more.
  • But India’s large population makes it unimpressive in proportional terms. That is, researchers per million population in India, 262, is extremely low compared with even developing countries like Brazil (888), south Africa (484) or Mexico (349).
    • About 94% of the Indians who obtained a doctorate at US university between 2001 and 2020 did so in science and engineering disciplines, second only to China.

Publications and Patents:

  • Indian researchers published 1,49,213 articles in science and engineering journals across the world in 2020, almost two and half times more than a decade earlier.
    • However, it still constituted only 5% of all the articles, where Chinese contributes 23% and US 15.5%
    • In 2021, 61m573 patents were filed in India, making it the sixth largest in the world. But, this was nowhere close to the nearly 16 lakh patents filed in China,a and about 6 lakh in US that year.



SOP to curb pollution at hospitals

    • The National Green tribunal (NGT) has constituted a five member committee headed by the secretary of the Union Ministry of Health.
      • It was constituted to form a standard operating procedure (SOP) for environmental management inside and around all government district hospitals, including medical colleges within three months.
      • The committee may specify issues to be covered within the complex and outside the boundary of the healthcare facility for regulation and control of polluting activities.
      • The green panel also ordered measures such as multilevel parking, management of traffic and air pollution to be taken specifically for AIIMS, Delhi.

National Green Tribunal:

        • The National Green Tribunal has been established on 18.10.2010 under the National Green Tribunal Act 2010 for effective and expeditious disposal of cases relating to environmental protection and conservation of forests and other natural resources.
        • It is a specialized body equipped with the necessary expertise to handle environmental disputes involving multi-disciplinary issues.
        • Its powers also include enforcement of any legal right relating to environment and giving relief and compensation for damages to persons and property and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.
        • The Tribunal shall not be bound by the procedure laid down under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, but shall be guided by principles of natural justice.
        • The Tribunal’s dedicated jurisdiction in environmental matters shall provide speedy environmental justice and help reduce the burden of litigation in the higher courts.
        • The Tribunal is mandated to make and endeavour for disposal of applications or appeals finally within 6 months of filing of the same.
        • Initially, the NGT is proposed to be set up at five places of sittings and will follow circuit procedure for making itself more accessible.
    • New Delhi is the Principal Place of Sitting of the Tribunal and Bhopal, Pune, Kolkata and Chennai shall be the other four place of sitting of the Tribunal.

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