Friday, 2nd June 2023

Table of contents

1   Editorial of the day


India’s manufacturing challenge

2   Daily Current Affairs


Ladakh Lake Sediment Deposits Reconstruct Ancient Climate Variation




Additional Disclosure for High Risk Foreign Portfolio Investor




Earth System Boundaries (ESBs)


Increased in irrigation cover




Neuralink Chip


Centralized Laboratory Network (CLN)


Ahilyabai Holkar (1725 – 1795)

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Editorial of the day

India’s manufacturing challenge

Exam View: Manufacturing sector of India; Unimpressive record; The price of food; Educational outcomes in India.

Context: When the trade and industrial policy regime was overhauled in 1991, the need for an ecosystem for manufacturing, including schooling, training and infrastructure, was overlooked.


  • The economic reforms of 1991 had almost exclusively focused on manufacturing, but the significant scaling down of tariffs and the dismantling of the ‘licence-permit Raj’ did not lead to an increase in the share of manufacturing in the economy.
  • There has been a qualitative change after 1991.
  • The rising quality and variety of the goods produced, without the expansion of manufacturing in relation to the economy, suggests a rising inequality of income. 

Decoding the editorial: Manufacturing sector of India

Unimpressive record

  • Make in India in 2014 lay emphasis on foreign direct investment.
  • Production-Linked Incentive scheme has also been introduced which subsidises production of certain products.
  • The private sector has been encouraged by the government.
    • Public investment: In the last Union Budget, capital expenditure was raised by 18.5%. This unusually high increase should come to the aid of the private sector by raising aggregate demand.
  • The record of these schemes has not been impressive.
    • The first advance estimates of the national income for 2022-23 show manufacturing growth to be 1.3% for the year, less than that for agriculture and all main segments of services.
    • Demonetisation of 2016 did slow the manufacturing sector, but the persistence of low rates of growth in the presence of policy initiatives implies ‘structural’ bottlenecks.


The price of food

  • Household demand for manufactures follows the satisfaction of its demand for the necessities of life which are food, housing, health and education, none of which can be postponed.
    • For a substantial section of India’s households, food occupies a large share. This constricts the growth of demand for manufactures.
  • The relationship between per capita income and the share of food in household expenditure is strongly negative globally, with the richest countries, such as the United States and Singapore, having low such shares.
    • Of the large economies of the world, the share of food is the largest in India, and its GDP per capita the lowest.
  • Since there is no control over the demand side, exporting could help the manufacturing sector of an economy sidestep a narrow domestic market.
  • To be a successful exporter like the economies of East Asia, India needs:
    • Infrastructure,
    • Skill level of the workforce, and
    • Logistics.
  • These determine the cost of production and the type of products that a country can produce, respectively.
  • The competitive disadvantage faced by India’s exporters can be seen in the much higher turnaround time for ships in India’s ports with that in Singapore.

Educational outcomes in India

  • Assessment by the Programme for International Student Assessment
    • In a group of about 75 countries, the countries of East Asia are at the very top while India barely manages not to be the last.
  • Assessment by the non-governmental organisation Pratham
    • Its widely publicised findings point to the very low reading ability and numeracy of Indian children in their early years.
    • These tests are for schoolchildren.

  • Leading Indian employers issue statements on the lack of employability of graduates in India.
  • For those headed for a life as a skilled worker, ranging from carpenters to plumbers and mechanics, university is not an aspiration at all.
    • This cohort has been neglected in economic policy-making in India.
    • There is no formal assessment available of the state of the vocational training institutes in India.
    • When it existed, the Planning Commission had released data showing that only about 5% of Indian youth have had any kind of technical training. The figure for South Korea was over 85%.

Manufacturing ecosystem cannot be achieved merely through legislation. Liberalising reforms have run their course in India.


Keywords: GS Paper-3: Indian Economy
Daily Current Affairs

Ladakh Lake Sediment Deposits Reconstruct Ancient Climate Variation

In News: The sedimentary deposits recovered from the Indus River valley in Ladakh have helped in retracing the climate since last deglaciation from 19.6 to 6.1 thousand years ago, paving the path towards understanding climate variation during the era.

About the Research Methodology:

  • The Scientists sampled sediments from 18 m thick sediment sequence from ancient lake deposits along the Indus River, at an altitude of 3287 m and carried out meticulous laboratory analysis of the samples.
  • They used physical characteristics like colour texture, grain size, grain composition, total organic carbon, and magnetic parameters of sediments to extract past climate information from the palaeolake sedimentary archive.
  • This was used to reconstruct paleoclimate (climate prevalent in a particular geological time period) variations of the period.

Key Findings of the Research:

  • Researchers reconstructed millennial to centennial-scale climate records from the paleolake deposits.
  • They identified a cold arid period, followed by strong monsoon period and subsequent weakening monsoon phase with enhanced El Nino activities with climate variations in the Last Glacial Maxima.
  • Climatic variations through time:
    • 6 to 11.1 thousand years ago: Cold arid climate influenced by westerly circulation
    • 4 to 16.5 thousand years ago: A short wet phase within the dominant westerly period is attributed to the early wet phase of a two-fold H1 event
    • 1 to 7.5 thousand years ago: Monsoon forcings dominated the climate of the region, following which the orbitally controlled solar insolation took over.
    • It influenced the position of Inter Tropical Convergence Zone ITCZ and was the key driver of the variability of these atmospheric circulations.
    • 5 to 6.1 thousand years ago: Westerlies regained strength during the mid-Holocene, coinciding with decreasing insolation, weakening monsoon, and enhanced El Nino activities.
  • The study provides insights into the past climate variations since the last deglaciation that followed the Last Glacial Maxima and recognizes the influence of different forcing mechanisms and teleconnections to improve the understanding of climate variability.

Why was Ladakh used for studying the Climate Change profile?

  • Ladakh lies in the Trans-Himalaya region, which forms an environmental boundary between North Atlantic and monsoon forcings, making the location ideal to gain insight into the variations of the atmospheric circulations like westerly and Indian summer monsoon.
  • Nature of sedimentary deposits: Sediment deposits in the lakes of Ladakh region are useful in attesting both short and long-term climatic changes, due to their continuous sedimentation rate which preserve physical and chemical characteristics of the sediments.
  • Pronounced climatic change effects in Mountainous regions: Glacial-to-interglacial transitional period witnesses large scale changes and mountainous regions helps in better understanding of such hydro-climate variations of a region due to their geomorphological set-up.
  • Presence of Glaciers which respond quickly to climate change events and act as an accessible source of preservation of ancient records and evidence.



Keywords: GS-1 Physical geography; Important Geophysical Phenomena
Daily Current Affairs


In News: Centre to implement World's Largest Grain Storage Plan as Pilot Project in selected districts

About World's largest Grain storage Plan:

  • The Union Cabinet has recently approved the implementation of the world's largest grain storage plan in the cooperative sector.
  • The plan aims to converge various schemes of ministries related to agriculture, farmers' welfare, consumer affairs, food and public distribution, and food processing industries.
  • The Ministry of Cooperation will execute a pilot project in 10 selected districts across different states.
  • Under the plan, the Inter Ministerial Committee(IMC) will establish guidelines for creating infrastructure, such as godowns, at selected Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS).
  • The plan will utilise the available outlays provided under the identified schemes of the respective Ministries.
  • Farmers will have the opportunity to sell their crops to PACS and receive advance payment at the Minimum Support Price (MSP).
  • PACS will sell the food grains in the market and provide the remaining balance to the farmers.
  • Farmers can store their crops in PACS-managed warehouses and receive financing for the next crop cycle.
  • PACS will not only provide storage facilities but also engage in activities such as Fair Price Shop and Custom Hiring Centres.
  • The plan aims to address the lack of agricultural storage capacity and reduce wastage of food grains.
  • It will also provide modern grain storage facilities to farmers, ensuring they receive fair prices for their grains.
  • Overall, the plan is expected to benefit millions of farmers associated with cooperatives, improve food security, and strengthen the rural economy.


Keywords: GS-3 Infrastructure Development
Daily Current Affairs

Additional Disclosure for High Risk Foreign Portfolio Investor

In News: SEBI proposes additional disclosure for High-Risk Foreign Portfolio Investors

About High-Risk Foreign Portfolio Investors:

  • The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has recently proposed additional disclosure requirements for high-risk Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPIs).
  • The aim is to enhance transparency and identify all holders of ownership, economic, and control rights.

Major issues:

  • FPIs have been observed to concentrate a substantial portion of their equity portfolio in a single company/group for a long time are of concern.
  • Concentrated holdings may increase the risk of price manipulation and circumvent regulatory requirements.

Major Proposals:

  • The proposed framework categorises FPIs into high, moderate, and low risk and all FPIs, except government-related entities, will be classified as high-risk FPIs.
  • High-risk FPIs with more than 50% of their equity Asset Under Management(AUM) in a single corporate group will now need to comply with additional disclosure requirements.
  • FPIs with single group exposure below 25% of their overall AUM may be reclassified as moderate risk and exempted from additional
  • Failure to provide additional disclosures may lead to invalid FPI registration and a requirement to wind down within six months.
  • High-risk FPIs with over Rs 25,000 crore AUM will have to mandatorily comply with additional disclosure requirements within six months.
  • Approximately Rs 2.6 lakh crore (6% of total FPI equity AUM) may be identified as high-risk FPIs based on group concentration or fund size thresholds.
  • Overall, the SEBI steps will go a long way to address investment concerns and strengthen the regulatory framework in India's equity markets.


Keywords: GS-3: Economy
Daily Current Affairs


In News: Union government launches Electronics Repair Services Outsourcing (ERSO) Pilot Project

About Electronics Repair Services Outsourcing (ERSO) project:

  • The Ministry of Electronics & IT (MeitY) has recently launched a pilot project Electronics Repair Services Outsourcing (ERSO) with a vision to make India a global electronics powerhouse.
  • The objective is to position India as the global leader in repair services for ICT (Information and Communication Technology) products.
  • Under the project, the government will take steps to attract outsourced repair services from around the world and make India the preferred destination.
  • The project will be supported by MeitY, Ministry of Environment Forest & Climate Change(MoEF&CC) in collaboration with industry stakeholders.
  • The initiative will also emphasise on environmental sustainability by extending the life of ICT products through affordable and reliable repair services.
  • The revenue potential from outsourced repair services is estimated to reach $20 billion in the next 5 years.
  • Overall, the ERSO initiative will be a game-changer for India, creating millions of job opportunities besides complimenting its commitment to the environment and the planet is reaffirmed through the ERSO initiative.


Keywords: GS-3: Government Policies
Daily Current Affairs

Earth System Boundaries (ESBs)

Why in news? Recently, a new research paper has published that seven of eight earth system boundaries (ESBs) that are critical for stability of the planet’s health and survival of species have already been crossed.


  • Earth System Boundaries (ESBs) are scientifically quantified safe and just limits for climate, freshwater, biodiversity and different kinds of pollution.
  • By operating within these limits, we can maintain a stable and resilient planet with accessibility to necessary resources.
  • These are hard limits and even temporary overshooting of some of the boundaries can permanently damage the planet’s critical systems.
  • Report title: “Safe and just Earth system boundaries.”
  • Key Features of Report:
    • Transgression of ESBs is spatially widespread, with two or more ESBs already transgressed for 52% of the world’s land surface, affecting 86% of the global population.
    • India, along with other parts of South Asia, Europe, parts of Africa is a ESB transgression hotspot with the Himalayan foothills experiencing at least 5 ESB transgressions.
    • The seven ESBs that have been crossed are: climate (two local exposure boundaries-- wet bulb temperatures of over 35 °C for at least 1 day of the year and extent of low-elevation coastal zones), functional integrity, and levels of surface water, groundwater, nitrogen, phosphorus and aerosols.
    • The eighth, which has not been crossed, is under two heads. In climate, 5 degree C warming is still “safe” but not” just.” “Safe and just” was crossed at 1 degree C. The global annual mean interhemispheric aerosol optical depth (AOD) difference, a proxy for degree of air pollution globally has also not been crossed.


Keywords: General Studies –3 Environment
Daily Current Affairs

Increased in irrigation cover

Why in news? According to a NITI Aayog member, more than half of India’s cultivated land now has access to assured irrigation led by an expansion in micro-projects that use water more efficiently.


  • In 2022-23, of 210 million hectares of gross sown area, nearly 55%, had irrigation access, up from 47.8% in 2013-14.
  • Increase in irrigation cover is attributed to expansion especially in dryland farm zones of Telangana, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka.
  • Out of total irrigated area, 40% is currently watered through canal networks, and 60% through groundwater.
  • Increase has been driven by Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY), Accelerated Irrigation Benefit Programme, Har Khet Ko Paani-Surface Minor Irrigation etc.


Keywords: General Studies –2 Government Policies & Interventions
Daily Current Affairs


Why in news? Recently, Scientists have discovered a new asteroid (dubbed 2023 FW13) along Earth, is considered a "quasi-moon" or "quasi-satellite".


  • It is considered a "quasi-moon" or "quasi-satellite," meaning it orbits the sun in a similar time frame as Earth does but is only slightly influenced by Earth’s gravitational pull.
  • Experts believe that it has been orbiting Earth since 100 BC and will keep circling our planet for at least another 1,500 years, until AD 3700.
  • It was identified by experts utilizing the Pan-STARRS telescope situated atop Hawaii’s Haleakala volcano.
  • Earlier, a quasi-satellite known as Kamo'oalewa was also discovered in 2016.
  • The newfound asteroid 2023 FW13 circles the sun in sync with Earth.
  • According to preliminary estimates, its diameter is from 10 to 20 meters.,50%20feet%20(15%20metres


Keywords: General Studies –1 Geography
Keywords: General Studies –3 Science & Technology
Daily Current Affairs

Centralized Laboratory Network (CLN)

Why in news? Recently, Indian Council of Medical Research National Institute of Virology (ICMR NIV) has joined Centralized Laboratory Network (CLN) that works to test vaccines which can be used during pandemic, epidemic disease outbreak.


  • CLN is a part of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and is largest global group which has standardised methods and materials for testing vaccines.
  • As CLN members, each institution will support the rapid development of novel vaccines against a future Disease X – a newly identified pathogen with epidemic or pandemic potential.
  • In interepidemic periods, facilities will support vaccine development against one or more of CEPI’s priority diseases – Chikungunya, Lassa virus, MERS, Nipah etc.
  • The new members of the CLN now are Indian Council of Medical Research-National Institute of Virology (ICMR-NIV), Institut Pasteur de Dakar (IPD) (Senegal), KAVI Institute of Clinical Research (KAVI ICR) & University of Nairobi Institute of Tropical and Infectious Diseases (UNITID) (Kenya), Synexa Life Sciences (South Africa) and Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI) (Uganda).
  • Objectives of the CEPI-funded network
    • The CEPI-funded network aims to identify promising vaccine candidates rapidly and accurately.
    • The network focuses on emerging infectious diseases.
    • The goal is to support sustainable regional outbreak preparedness infrastructure.


Keywords: General Studies –3 Science & Technology
Daily Current Affairs

Ahilyabai Holkar (1725 – 1795)

Why in news? Recently, Maharashtra government has decided to rename Ahmednagar district as Ahilyanagar.


  • Ahilyabai Holkar was born Chaundi in Ahmednagar district to a Dhangar family and was married to Khande Rao Holkar of the Holkar dynasty of Holkar.
  • She was a 18th century Malwa queen.
  • She took control of Malwa in 1754 after her husband’s death in Battle of Kumbher against king of Bharatpur.
  • City of Maheshwar became a literary, musical, artistic and industrial centre, and she helped establish a textile industry there, which is now home to famous Maheshwari saris.
  • She excelled at administrative and military strategies and during her rule perfect order and good government prevailed.
  • Restoration/revamp of various temples including Kashi Vishwanath, Badrinath, Dwarka, Omkareshwari


Keywords: General Studies –1 Art & Culture
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