UPSC Civil Services Daily Current Affairs 14th February 2022
Topics for the day :
- Sri Lankan Navy arrests indian Fishermen
- Election contest in Goa and Uttarakhand today
- India-Australia interim trade agreement and FTA
- Hacking group ModifiedElephant
- EOS-04 launch, ISRO’s first of 2022
- Saint Ramanujacharya
Sri lankan Navy arrests indian fishermen
- In the third such incident in the Palk Bay area in the past two months, the Sri Lankan Navy on Saturday arrested 12 fishermen from Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu, and seized two boats on the charge of poaching
Reasons for the arrest :
- Maritime Agreement of 1974 gave away Katchatheevu island and established boundaries in the palk strait but indian fisherman have been fishing around the island since historical times
- govt has not created awareness to make fishermen aware of boundaries nor has it installed GPS in the boats
- large number of Indian fishermen are dependent on trawling which is banned in Sri Lanka
- Hence they venture out into the boundary of Srilanka
- Political parties in TN also don’t recognise the act of New Delhi and there is a PIL filed in SC
Steps taken by the govts
- Established a Joint working Group (JWG) on fisheries to look into the issue
- Hotline established b/w coast guards of both countries
- commitment to no violence and loss of lives of fishermen
- Releasing fishermen and their boats on humanitarian grounds
- Indian govt is preparing Indian fishermen for deep sea fishing by providing motorized boats under the palk bay scheme
Way forward :
- The fishing equipment that is prohibited in Sri Lanka must be banned by India in the Palk Bay.
- Recognise that there are various stakeholders – two Union and provincial governments, the Navies and Coast Guards, fisheries departments and above all, fishing communities of the two countries.
- Form a Palk Bay Authority (PBA) consisting of marine ecologists, fisheries experts, strategic specialists
- This PBA could determine the ideal sustainable catch, type of fishing equipment that can be used, and the number of fishing dates for Sri Lankan and Indian fishermen
Election contest in Goa and Uttarakhand today
- Uttarakhand,goa and UP(phase 2) are going for elections today Time of Elections :
- Elections for the Lok Sabha and every state Legislative Assembly have to take place every five years, unless called earlier.
Schedule of Elections : National elections
- The Constitution states that there can be no longer than six months between the last session of the dissolved Lok Sabha and the recalling of the new House, so elections have to be concluded before then.
- The Election Commission normally announces the schedule of elections in a major press conference a few weeks before the formal process is set in motion.
- The Model Code of Conduct for guidance of candidates and political parties comes immediately into effect after such announcement.
- The formal process for the elections starts with the Notification calling upon the electorate to elect Members of a House
- As soon as Notifications are issued, candidates can start filing their nominations in the constituencies from where they wish to contest
- These are scrutinised by the Returning Officer of the constituency concerned after the last date for filing nominations is over.
- The validly nominated candidates can withdraw from the contest within two days from the date of scrutiny
- Contesting candidates get at least two weeks for political campaign before the actual date of poll
- Due to massive size of the electorate, polling is held on a number of days for the national elections
- A separate date for counting is fixed and the results declared for each constituency by the concerned Returning Officer.
- The Commission compiles the complete list of members elected and issues an appropriate
Notification for the due constitution of the House
- India and Australia have announced that they are set to conclude an interim trade agreement in March and a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) 12-18 months thereafter.
What is free trade agreement
- It is a pact between two or more nations to reduce barriers to imports and exports among them.
- Under a free trade policy, goods and services can be bought and sold across international borders with little or no government tariffs, quotas, subsidies, or prohibitions to inhibit their exchange
- Usually PTA -> FTA -> CECA -> Custom union -> Common market
What is the early harvest agreement likely to cover?
- An interim or early harvest trade agreement is used to liberalise tariffs on the trade of certain goods between two countries or trading blocs before a comprehensive FTA (Free Trade Agreement) is concluded.
- The interim agreement will cover “most areas of interest for both countries” including goods, services, rules of origin, sanitary and phytosanitary measures and customs procedures.
- Bilateral trade between the two countries stood at about $12.5 billion in FY21 and has already surpassed $17.7 billion in the first 10 months of FY22.
- India has imported merchandise worth about $12.1 billion from Australia in the first 10 months of the fiscal and has exported merchandise worth $5.6 billion in the same period.
- Key imports from Australia include coal, gold and LNG while key exports to the country from India include diesel, petrol and gems and jewellery.
- Australia has also emphasised that the agreement would lead to deeper cooperation between the two countries in critical minerals and rare earth elements which are critical to future industries including renewable energy and electric vehicles
What other Free Trade Agreements is India currently negotiating?
- India is currently in the process of negotiating FTAs with the UAE, the UK, Canada, the EU and Israel, besides Australia. India is also looking to complete an early harvest agreement with the UAE and the UK in the first half of 2022
Hacking group Modified Elephant
- American cybersecurity firm SentinelOne has released a report on ModifiedElephant – a hacking group that allegedly planted incriminating evidence on the personal devices of Indian journalists, human rights activists, human rights defenders, academics and lawyers.
More about the news :
- According to the report, ModifiedElephant maliciously targeted specific groups and individuals, including the activists arrested in the Bhima Koregaon case of 2018. It called the incident ‘one of the most serious cases of evidence tampering’
- Modus operandi –
? ModifiedElephant operators have been infecting their targets using spearphishing emails with malicious file attachments
? Spearphishing refers to the practice of sending emails to targets that look like they are coming from a trusted source to either reveal important information or install different kinds of malware on their computer systems.
? ModifiedElephant typically weaponises malicious Microsoft Office files to deliver malware to their targets though the method has changed over the years
? Earlier they used executable files(.exe) while since 2015 they use .doc,.pps,.docx etc.
? ModifiedElephant obtained remote access to and unrestricted control of their victims devices using NetWire and DarkComet, two publicly-available remote access trojans (RATs)
EOS-04 launch, ISRO’s first of 2022
- EOS- 04, will be an earth observation satellite.
- This will be first of 19 launches planned in 2022, ISRO’s busiest year, including Chandrayaan-3 and the uncrewed Gaganyaan mission.
More on the news :
- EOS-04 is the fourth in a series of earth observation satellites being launched under a new generic name.
- Earlier series of earth observation satellites – Cartosat, Oceansat, Resourcesat, GISAT, Scatsat, and a few others have all now become part of the new EOS series
- EOS-04, will be placed in a sun synchronous polar orbit of 529 km, is a radar-imaging satellite. It will replace RISAT-1, launched in 2012. Radar imaging is unaffected by weather, cloud or fog, or the lack of sunlight, and can produce high-quality images in all conditions and at all times
- Two small satellites – INSPIREsat-1 and INS-2TD – will be launched with EOS-4 on the same rocket.
Functions of earth observation satellites :
- Land and forest mapping and monitoring
- Mapping of resources like water or minerals or fishes, weather
- Climate observations, soil assessment, and geospatial contour mapping are done through these satellites
- EOS-04 was designed to provide high-quality images for applications such as agriculture, forestry and plantations, flood mapping, soil moisture and hydrology
- Recently President of india unveiled a ramanujacharya statue on the outskirts of Hyderabad
- Sometime ago the PM of india had unveiled the statue of equality in the same city
More about saint ramanujacharya :
- Born in 1017 CE in Tamil Nadu. He is the most respected Acharya in the philosophy of Sri Vaishnavism.
- He was also referred to as Ilaya Perumal which means the radiant one.
- His philosophical foundations for devotionalism were influential to the Bhakti movement.
- He is famous as the chief proponent of Vishishtadvaita subschool of Vedanta.
- His major works were Vedartha sangraha (Summary of the Vedas), Sri Bhashya (a commentary on the Brahma Sutras), Bhagavad Gita Bhashya (a commentary on the Bhagavad Gita)
More on Vishishtadvaita :
- It can be described as qualified monism or qualified non-dualism or attributive monism.
- It is a school of Vedanta philosophy which believes in all diversity subsuming to an underlying unity
UPSC Civil Services Daily Current Affairs 14th February 2022
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