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Daily Current Affairs 19th August

Sarat Chandra IAS Academy -UPSC Civils Daily Current Affairs 16th August-2021

Daily Current Affairs 16th August – Topics 

  • Development of Infrastructure Facilities for Judiciary
  • Special livestock sector package
  • Sub-Categorisation of Other Backward Classes:
  • National Ayush Mission:
  • New Global Biodiversity Framework


1.Development of Infrastructure Facilities for Judiciary

#GS2 #Judiciary #Government Policies #Judicial Backlogs

Context: Cabinet approves continuation of the Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS) for Development of Infrastructure Facilities for Judiciary for further five years.

About the scheme:

  • Scheme is extended for five years from 01.04.2021 to 31.03.2026.
  • Total cost is Rs.9000 crore, out of which Central share will be Rs.5357 crore.
    • This includes Rs.50 crore for the Gram Nyayalayas Scheme and their implementation in a Mission Mode through National Mission for Justice Delivery and Legal Reforms.
  • This scheme for Development of Infrastructure Facilities for Judiciary has been in operation since 1993-94.
  • This proposal for continuation of the CSS will help in construction of 3800 court halls and 4000 residential units (both new and ongoing projects) for judicial officers of District and Subordinate Courts, 1450 lawyer halls, 1450 toilets complexes and 3800 digital computer rooms.
  • This will help in improving the functioning and performance of the Judiciary in the country and will be a new step towards building better courts for a new India.
  • Department of Justice has developed an online monitoring system with technical assistance from ISRO.
  • The upgraded “Nyaya Vikas-2.0” web portal and mobile application is used for monitoring physical and financial progress of CSS judicial infrastructure projects by geo-tagging completed and ongoing projects.


  • Several courts are still functioning in rented premises with insufficient space and some are without even basic facilities.
  • Lack of residential accommodation to all the judicial officers also adversely affects their working and performance.
  • Adequacy of judicial infrastructure is critical for reduction of pendency and backlog of cases in Courts.
  • The present proposal provides for additional activities like construction of lawyer halls, toilets complexes and digital computer rooms.
  • This will add to the convenience of lawyers and litigants besides reducing digital divide.
  • Continued assistance to the Gram Nyayalayas will also give impetus to providing speedy, substantial and affordable justice to the common man at his door step.

About Gram Nyayalayas:

  • Gram Nyayalayas or village courts are established under the Gram Nyayalayas Act, 2008 for speedy and easy access to the justice system in the rural areas of India.
  • The Gram Nyayalayas are presided over by a Nyayadhikari, who will have the same power, enjoy same salary and benefits of a Judicial Magistrate of First Class.
    • Such Nyayadhikari are to be appointed by the State Government in consultation with the respective High Court.


  • A Gram Nyayalaya has jurisdiction over an area specified by a notification by the State Government in consultation with the respective High Court.
  • The Court can function as a mobile court at any place within the jurisdiction of such Gram Nyayalaya, after giving wide publicity to that regard.
  • They have both civil and criminal jurisdiction over the offences.
  • The pecuniary jurisdiction of the Nyayalayas is fixed by the respective High Courts.
  • Gram Nyayalayas has been given power to accept certain evidences which would otherwise not be acceptable under Indian Evidence Act.
  • The fees charged in civil suits shall not exceed Rs.100 irrespective of the value of property in dispute.
  • Gram Nyayalayas allow for conciliation of the dispute and settlement of the same in the first instance.
  • The Gram Nyayalaya is not bound by the rules of evidence provided in the Indian Evidence Act, 1872 but guided by the principles of natural justice and subject to any rule made by the High Court.


  • Appeal in criminal cases shall lie to the Court of Session, which shall be heard and disposed of within a period of six months from the date of filing of such appeal.
  • Appeal in civil cases shall lie to the District Court, which shall be heard and disposed of within a period of six months from the date of filing of the appeal.

Way Forward

  • The CSS Scheme will increase the availability of well-equipped Court Halls and Residential Accommodations for Judges/Judicial Officers of District and Subordinate Courts all over the country.
  • Setting up of digital computer rooms will also improve digital capabilities and give impetus to the digitization initiation being pursued as a part of India’s Digital India vision.
  • This will help in improving the overall functioning and performance of the Judiciary. Continued assistance to the Gram Nyayalayas will also give impetus to providing speedy, substantial and affordable justice to the common man at his doorstep.

National Mission for Justice Delivery and Legal Reforms:

  • It was approved by the Union Government in June 2011.
  • Objective:
    • Increasing access to courts by reducing delays and arrears in our judicial system.
    • Enhancing accountability through structural changes and by setting performance standards and capacities.


  1. Special livestock sector package

#GS3 #Agriculture and allied activities #Livestock resources

Context: Cabinet approves Revising and realigning various components of Department of Animal Husbandry & Dairying Schemes and Special livestock package.


  • To boost growth in the livestock sector and thereby making animal husbandry more remunerative to 10 crore farmers engaged in Animal Husbandry Sector.
  • This package envisages Central Government’s support amounting to Rs.9800 crore over duration of 5 years for leveraging total investment of Rs.54, 618 crore for 5 years.
  • It includes the share of investments by State Governments, State Cooperatives, Financial institutions, External funding agencies and other stakeholders.


  • As per new revisions, all the schemes of the Department will be merged into three broad categories as Development Programmes which includes
    • Rastriya Gokul Mission, National Programme for Dairy Development (NPDD), National Livestock Mission (NLM) and Livestock Census and Integrated Sample Survey (LC & ISS) as sub-schemes
    • Disease Control programme renamed as Livestock Health and Disease Control (LH & DC) which includes the present Livestock Health and Disease Control (LH & DC) scheme and National Animal Disease Control Programme (NADCP) and Infrastructure Development Fund.
    • The Animal Husbandry Infrastructure Development fund (AHIDF) and the Dairy Infrastructure Development Fund (DIDF) are merged and the present scheme for support to Dairy Cooperatives and Farmer Producer Organizations engaged in Dairy activities is also included in this third category
    • Significance:
  • The Rastriya Gokul Mission will help in development and conservation of indigenous breeds and would also contribute in improving the economic condition of the rural poor.
  • The National Programme for Dairy Development (NPDD) scheme is targeted towards installation of about 8900 bulk milk coolers, thus providing benefit to more than 8 lakh milk producers and 20 LLPD (Lakh Litres Per Day) milk will be additionally procured.
  • Under NPDD, financial assistance from Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will be available thus strengthening and creating fresh infrastructure in 4500 villages.

Animal Husbandry in India:

  • Animal Husbandry plays an important role in Indian economy.
  • A large number of farmers depend upon animal husbandry for their livelihood. It supports the livelihood of almost 55% of the rural population.
  • It also provides employment to about 8.8 % of the population in India
  • As per the Economic Survey-2021, the contribution of Livestock in total agriculture and allied sector Gross Value Added (at Constant Prices) has increased from 24.32% (2014-15) to 28.63% (2018-19).
  • India is the highest livestock owner of the world.
  • As per the 20th Livestock Census, the total Livestock population is 535.78 million in the country showing an increase of 4.6% over Livestock Census-2012


  1. Sub-Categorisation of Other Backward Classes:

#GS2 #Social Empowerment #statutory bodies

Context: Cabinet approves Extension of term of the commission constituted under Article 340 of the constitution to examine the issue of Sub-categorization within other Backward Classes in the Central List.

What is sub-categorisation of OBCs?


  • OBCs are granted 27% reservation in jobs and education under the central government.
  • A Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court reopened the legal debate on sub-categorisation of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes for reservations.
    • The debate arises out of the perception that only a few affluent communities among the over 2,600 included in the Central List of OBCs have secured a major part of this 27% reservation. The argument for sub-categorisation is that it would ensure “equitable distribution” of representation among all OBC communities.
  • To examine this, the Rohini Commission was constituted on October 2, 2017 by President of India under powers conferred to him by Article 340 of the Constitution.
  • Before the Rohini Commission was set up, the Centre had granted constitutional status to the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC).

What are the Commission’s terms of reference?

  • To examine the extent of inequitable distribution of benefits of reservation among the castes or communities included in the broad category of OBCs with reference to such classes included in the Central List;
  • To work out the mechanism, criteria, norms and parameters in a scientific approach for sub-categorisation within such OBCs;
  • To take up the exercise of identifying the respective castes or communities or sub-castes or synonyms in the Central List of OBCs and classifying them into their respective sub-categories.
  • To study the various entries in the Central List of OBCs and recommend correction of any repetitions, ambiguities, inconsistencies and errors of spelling or transcription.

Challenges Before the Commission:

  • Data Deficiency:
    • Absence of data for the population of various communities to compare with their representation in jobs and admissions.
  • Delaying of Survey:
    • It was decided in Census 2021, data of OBCs will also be collected, but no consensus has been reached regarding enumeration of OBCs in the Census.

What is the extent of OBC recruitment in central jobs?

  • As per the report submitted to the NCBC by the Department of Personnel and Training on July 24, 2020:
    • OBC representation is 16.51 % in group-A central government services.
    • 38 % in group-B.
    • 25 % in group-C (excluding safai karmacharis) and
    • 72 % in group-C (safai karmacharis).
      • This data was for only 42 ministries/departments of the central government.

What is Article 340?

  • Article 340 deals with the need to, inter alia, identify those “socially and educationally backward classes”, understand the conditions of their backwardness, and make recommendations to remove the difficulties they face.
  • It lays down conditions for the appointment of a Commission to investigate the conditions of the backward classes.
  • The President may by order appoint a Commission consisting of such persons as he thinks fit to investigate the conditions of socially and educationally backward classes within the territory of India.

 Constitutional basis:

  • Article 14 of the Constitution guarantees equality before the law. That means un-equals cannot be treated equally. Measures are required to be taken for the upliftment of un-equals to bring them on par with the advanced classes.
  • Article 16 (4) provides that the State can make any provision for the reservation of appointments or posts in favour of any backward class of citizens who, in the opinion of the state, are not adequately represented in the services under the State.


4.National Ayush Mission:

#GS2 #Government policies #Issues related to health


  • The Union cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday approved the continuation of National AYUSH Mission (NAM) as a centrally sponsored scheme effective 1 April to 31 March 2026 with an expenditure of ?4,607.3 crore.
  • Of 4,603 crores the Centre will bear Rs 3,000 crore share, and the states will cover the rest.

Key Details about the scheme:

  • The mission was Launched on September 2014 by the Department of AYUSH under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, during the 12th Plan for implementation through States/UTs.
  • Now, it is implemented by the Ministry of Ayush.
  • The scheme involves expansion of the AYUSH sector to promote holistic health of Indians.
  • The Mission addresses the gaps in health services through supporting the efforts of State/UT Governments for providing AYUSH health services/education in the country, particularly in vulnerable and far-flung areas.


  • It aims at providing cost-effective AYUSH services, with universal access,
    • By upgrading AYUSH hospitals and dispensaries, co-location of AYUSH facilities at primary health centres, community health centres, and district hospitals.
  • Strengthening institutional capacity at the state level through upgrading AYUSH educational institutions and wellness centres to provide services of a holistic wellness model based on AYUSH principles and practices so as to empower masses for “self-care” to reduce the disease burden, and out-of-pocket expenditure
  • To focus on reducing communicable/non-communicable diseases through targeted public health programmes using AYUSH systems of healthcare.
  • Aiding the establishing of clusters through the convergence of cultivation, value addition, warehousing, marketing & developing infrastructure for entrepreneurs.
  • Supporting the cultivation of medicinal plants by adopting Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) so as to provide a sustained supply of quality raw materials for AYUSH drugs.

Meaning of ‘Ayush’:

  • AYUSH stands for Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani and Homoeopathy systems of medicine.
  • Traditional & Non-Conventional Systems of Health Care and Healing Which Include Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, Sowa-Rigpa and Homoeopathy etc.
  • The positive features of the Indian systems of medicine namely their diversity and flexibility; accessibility; affordability, a broad acceptance by a large section of the general public; comparatively lesser cost and growing economic value, have great potential to make them providers of healthcare that the large sections of our people need.


5.New Global Biodiversity Framework

#GS3 #Environment and Conservation

Context: A new Global Biodiversity Framework by the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) was recently released.

What is the new framework’s about?

  • The post-2020 global biodiversity framework builds on the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and sets out an ambitious plan to implement broad-based action to bring about a transformation in society’s relationship with biodiversity, ensuring that by 2050 the shared vision of ‘living in harmony with nature’ is fulfilled.
  • The framework is built around a theory of change which recognizes that urgent policy action globally, regionally and nationally is required to transform economic, social and financial models.
  • It aims to ensure the right capacity building of the communities/governments to take up conservation measures to meet the goals.
    • These include the contentious technology transfer to countries that don’t have it currently and also a wide scientific cooperation among countries.
  • The trends that have exacerbated biodiversity loss will stabilize in the next 10 years (by 2030) and allow for the recovery of natural ecosystems in the following 20 years, with net improvements by 2050 to achieve the Convention’s vision of “living in harmony with nature by 2050”.

Theory of change:

  • The framework’s theory of change assumes that transformative actions are taken to deploy solutions to reduce threats to biodiversity. Actions should ensure that biodiversity is used sustainably in order to meet people’s needs.
  • It aims to ensure progress is monitored in a transparent and accountable manner with adequate stocktaking exercises to ensure that, by 2030, the world is on a path to reach the 2050 Vision for Biodiversity.
  • The theory of change is complementary to and supportive of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.


The new frameworks have four goals to achieve by 2050.

  • To halt the extinction and decline of biodiversity.
    • The rate of extinctions should reduce at least tenfold
    • The risk of species extinctions across all taxonomic and functional groups should reduce by half
    • Genetic diversity of wild and domesticated species should be maintained by at least 90%
  • To enhance and retain nature’s services to humans by conservation.
  • To ensure fair and equitable benefits to all from use of genetic resources.
  • To close the gap between available financial and other means of implementation and those necessary to achieve the 2050 Vision.

What are the key targets?

  • The Framework comprises 21 targets and 10 ‘milestones’ proposed for 2030, en route to ‘living in harmony with nature’ by 2050. They include:
    • Ensure at least 30% of land and sea areas globally (especially areas of particular importance for biodiversity and its contributions to people) are conserved through effective, equitably managed, ecologically representative and well-connected systems of protected areas.
    • Prevent or reduce the rate of introduction and establishment of invasive alien species by 50% and control or eradicate such species to eliminate or reduce their impacts.
    • Reduce nutrients lost to the environment by at least half, pesticides by at least two thirds, and eliminate discharge of plastic waste.
    • Use ecosystem-based approaches to contribute to mitigation and adaptation to climate change.
    • And ensure that all mitigation and adaptation efforts avoid negative impacts on biodiversity.
    • Redirect, repurpose, reform or eliminate incentives harmful for biodiversity in a just and equitable way, reducing them by at least $500 billion per year.
    • Increase financial resources from all sources by at least $ 200 billion per year, and increase international financial flows to developing countries by at least $10 billion per year. to developing countries.
    • Redirect, repurpose, reform or eliminate incentives harmful for biodiversity in a just and equitable way, reducing them by at least $500 billion per year.
    • Increase international financial flows to developing countries by at least $10 billion per year.

Relationship with SDGs:

  • The framework is a fundamental contribution to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
  • At the same time, progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will help to create the conditions necessary to implement the framework.

Daily Current Affaires 16th August

Convention on Biological Diversity:

  • The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), a legally binding treaty to conserve biodiversity has been in force since 1993.
  • It has 3 main objectives:
    • The conservation of biological diversity.
    • The sustainable use of the components of biological diversity.
    • The fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources.
  • Nearly all countries have ratified it (notably, the US has signed but not ratified).
  • The CBD Secretariat is based in Montreal, Canada and it operates under the United Nations Environment Programme.
  • India enacted Biological Diversity Act in 2002 for giving effect to the provisions of the CBD.

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