Thursday, 20th April 2023

Table of contents

1   Editorial of the day


Amendment to the IT Rules - Edukemy Current Affairs

2   Daily Current Affairs


World Heritage Site - Edukemy Current Affairs


Sea Surface Temperature - Edukemy Current Affairs


Ninth Schedule of Constitution


ISRO to Launch Teleos-2 Satellite


Electromagnetic Ion Cyclotron Waves


Tea Mosquito Bug - Edukemy Current Affairs


PM-MITRA - Edukemy Current Affairs


G-7 Led Climate Club - Edukemy Current Affairs


Animal Birth Control Rules - Edukemy Current Affairs


Zemithang - Edukemy Current Affairs


River Hindon - Edukemy Current Affairs

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Editorial of the day

Amendment to the IT Rules - Edukemy Current Affairs

Exam View: IT rules; The consequences of the Amendments; Need of the hour.

Context: The amended Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021, or IT Rules will diminish the right to question authority, speak truth to power, and erase civil liberties.

Background: The amendment made to the IT Rules grants to the Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) unbridled power to create a “fact check unit”, which will identify false or misleading online content that concerns the central government’s business in any manner.

  • If social media intermediaries fail to prevent users from hosting or publishing information that have been flagged as false by the fact check unit, they stand to lose their “safe harbour” immunity.

IT Rules

  • The IT Rules derive their authority from the Information Technology Act, 2000, a law which was meant to provide “legal recognition” for electronic commerce.
  • Through section 79, the Act provides a “safe harbour” to intermediaries.
  • Divided into two distinct parts, the rules sought to regulate intermediaries through MeitY and the digital news media, including over-the-top (OTT) media services, such as Netflix and Amazon Prime, through the Union Ministry for Information and Broadcasting.
  • The IT Rules has been subject to several sets of challenges due to its impact on end-to-end encryption, and as a result on our right to privacy, with petitions now pending consideration in the Supreme Court of India.

Decoding the editorial: The consequences of the Amendments

  • Restrictions flow not through legislation, but through executive diktats and these commands militate against substantive constitutional guarantees.

    • Fake news and misinformation are not grounds on which speech can be limited.
    • If a piece of information is proven to be false and has a direct bearing on one of the grounds stipulated in Article 19(2), such speech can be limited through law. But the amendments made to the IT Rules do not caveat the restraints they place in any manner.
    • Instead, they confer on the Fact Check Unit limitless powers to decide what information is false and, in the process, compel social media intermediaries to act based on these findings.
  • Open-ended and undefined
    • In its landmark judgement in Shreya Singhal vs Union of India (2015), the Supreme Court, in striking down Section 66A of the IT Act, held that a law that limits speech can neither be vague nor over-broad. The amendment to the IT Rules suffers on both accounts.
    • The notification fails to define fake news.
    • It allows the government’s fact-check unit to make declarations on the veracity of any news “in respect of any business” that involves the state. The use of open-ended and undefined words, especially the use of the phrase “any business” indicates that the government will have an effective carte blanche to decide what each of us can see, hear, and read on the Internet.
  • Intermediaries face the threat of prosecution
    • It will naturally weed out information deemed false by the Fact Check Unit.
    • The rights of the press, and indeed of the common person, to question authority, to speak truth to power, will be diminished, and our civil liberties obliterated.

Need of the hour:

  • A comprehensive parliamentary legislation on the constitutionally committed campaign against fake news.
  • The legislation should have limitations on speech to the grounds stipulated in Article 19(2).
  • The government cannot act as an arbiter of its own cause.
    • In France, to counter the spread of misinformation during elections, the declaration is made not by the government but by an independent judge.
  • There is a need to find less restrictive alternatives as solutions to curbing fake news.
    • For instance, in many cases, a government faced with what it believes is deceptive news always has the power to provide its own version of the facts, without calling for an erasure of other accounts.

India must be cognisant that not all problems are capable of easy legislative solutions. Certainly, thoughtless censorship is never an answer.



Keywords: GS-Paper 3: Government policies and interventions, issues arising out of their design and implementation.
Daily Current Affairs

World Heritage Site - Edukemy Current Affairs

In News: The International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) in 1982 took a decision to celebrate April 18 as the International Day for Monuments and Sites, popularly known as World Heritage Day.

About World Heritage Day:

  • 18th April was approved as World heritage day by UNESCO in 1983 during its 22nd General Conference.
  • The day is dedicated to recognizing sites of historical importance, raising awareness regarding them, and stressing the need to restore and preserve them. The day, thus, promotes cultural importance, and also highlights many impediments to doing so.
  • Every year, a theme is proposed for the day which guides the celebrations and the many activities that ICOMOS National and International Scientific Committees do.
  • The theme for this year is “Heritage Changes” which is aimed at addressing issues of climate action and its relation to cultural heritage.
  • It also emphasises the role of cultural heritage in supporting the protection of vulnerable communities in climate action and responding to the UN Decade of Action.

About World Heritage Site:

  • World Heritage Sites are UNESCO designated sites having cultural, historical, scientific or other forms of significance around the world and considered to be of outstanding value to humanity.
  • The World Heritage site list is maintained by the international World Heritage Programme, administered by UNESCO World Heritage Committee (WHC).
  • There are three types of sites namely cultural, natural, and mixed. India has 40 World Heritage Sites out of which 32 are cultural, 7 are natural, and 1 (Khangchendzonga National Park), is of mixed type. India has the sixth-largest number of sites in the world.
  • Other sites are Ajanta Caves, Agra Fort, Taj Mahal, Konark Sun Temple etc.
  • Nomination process of World Heritage Sites
    • Tentative List: First step a country must take is making an ‘inventory' of its important natural and cultural heritage sites.
    • Nomination File: After UNESCO includes a property in the Tentative List, that country has to prepare a nomination document which is sent for evaluation to the advisory bodies.
    • Final Inscription: Once a site has been nominated and evaluated, it is up to the World Heritage Committee to make the final decision on its inscription

Significance of listing under World Heritage Site:

  • Press and Popularity. Once a site has been recognized, it becomes more attractive to travellers and galvanises both national and international tourism not only to this site but also to other historical sites in the states.
  • Funding. The site is eligible to receive funds for its protection and conservation. The site will also have access to global project management resources for ensuring the site’s protection.
  • Protection during a war. Once declared, the site becomes protected under the Geneva Convention against destruction during a war.
  • A higher number of tourists automatically translates into better amenities and money for the community where the heritage site is located.
  • Once a site is inscribed on the World Heritage List, the resulting prestige often helps raise awareness among citizens and governments for heritage preservation.

Government Initiatives for Heritage Conservation and rejuvenation:

  • Adopt a Heritage scheme where the government invites public sector companies, private sector firms as well as individuals, to develop selected monuments and heritage sites.
  • PRASHAD Scheme (Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive) introduced in 2015 focuses on identifying and developing pilgrim sites to enrich the religious tourism experience.
  • Project ‘Mausam’ aims to re-connect and re-establish communications between countries of the Indian Ocean world, which would lead to an enhanced understanding of shared cultural values and concerns.


Keywords: GS-1 Indian Heritage Site, Indian Architecture
Daily Current Affairs

Sea Surface Temperature - Edukemy Current Affairs

In News: Sea surface temperatures (SSTs) around the world are at their highest levels in recorded history this April. Forecasts from Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) also show that the south Bay of Bengal and south Arabian Sea are expected to temperatures of a record 30º C plus SST this week.

About Sea Surface Temperature:

  • SST is the water temperature close to the ocean's surface which varies mainly with latitude, with the warmest waters generally near the equator and the coldest waters in the Arctic and Antarctic regions.
  • SST is routinely used for predicting whether the total amount of rainfall that India receives during the monsoon season will be less or more than the long-term mean.
  • SST measurement is done through satellite microwave radiometers, infrared (IR) radiometers, in situ moored and drifting buoys, and ships of opportunity. Different instruments measure the temperature at different depths.
  • Trends of SST:
    • On April 5th, the global average SST was 21.1 degree C , a new record temperature and SSTs over the tropics are high with the Indian Ocean region recording temperatures that are 29 to 31 degree C.
    • There are patches of strong marine heat waves over Arabian Sea along Kerala and Karnataka and over Bay of Bengal along Bangladesh and West Bengal.
    • Since 1993, the rate of ocean warming has more than doubled and marine heat waves have doubled too in frequency since 1982. By absorbing more CO2, the ocean has undergone increasing surface acidification and loss of oxygen has occurred from the surface to 1000 m.

Reasons for High SST:

  • Ocean temperatures are shooting up mainly due to a rise in global average temperatures or climate change.
  • The immediate cause is very high solar radiation combined with certain ocean dynamics. High solar radiation warms land faster than the ocean and Arabian Sea normally starts cooling off after the monsoon sets in.
  • Whenever there is an El Nino developing in the Pacific, there are changes in winds and atmospheric circulation over the Indian Ocean, which heats it up. The Indian Ocean has started responding, with high sea surface temperatures across the basin.

Impacts of high SST

  • If the SSTs remain exceptionally high, they can impact the monsoon in different ways:
    • Warm SSTs can contribute to development of low-pressure systems and genesis of depressions during monsoon. These systems intensify monsn.
    • But very high ocean temperatures can also reduce the temperature gradient between land and ocean which can affect monsoon and rainfall activities
  • Such warm temperatures definitely impacts marine life and the nature of impact needs to be studied.
  • Warm SSTs are the recipe for Marine heat wave which can cause ecological, economic and biodiversity losses.
  • Abnormally warm SSTs and delayed monsoon can result in water security issues in monsoon dependent regions.


Keywords: GS-1 Important Geophysical Phenomenon, Physical Geography, global warming
Daily Current Affairs

Ninth Schedule of Constitution

In News: Chhattisgarh Chief Minister requests Centre to include quota bills in Ninth Schedule

About Ninth Schedule

  • The Schedule was introduced in 1951 through the First Amendment to put a list of laws that are shielded from judicial review.
  • It was created by Article 31B to protect laws related to agrarian reform and to abolish the Zamindari system.
  • It shields specific laws or enactments and prevents them from being declared void on the ground of inconsistency with or abridgement of the rights conferred by any provision of Part III of the Constitution that contains fundamental rights.
  • Since its inception, the Ninth Schedule has been amended several times, and currently, 284 laws are protected under it.
  • The Schedule covers a wide range of subjects, including agriculture, land issues, and reservation such as Tamil Nadu law that provides 69% reservation in the state is part of the Schedule.
  • Although the Schedule excludes judicial review, the Supreme Court of India has held that even laws under the Ninth Schedule would be open to scrutiny if they violated fundamental rights or the basic structure of the Constitution.
  • Previously, the Supreme Court in the landmark judgment of Indra Sawhney v. Union of India (1992) case established that reservation above the 50% ceiling was
  • Previously, the Supreme Court ruling that reservation in the matter of promotions in public posts is not a fundamental right.
  • Even in its EWS judgement of 2022, the Supreme Court ruled to argue in favour of 10% EWS quota which have effectively breached the ceiling limit of 50% on reservation.
  • All these judgements have led to clarion calls by different political parties to include reservation under the Ninth Schedule to shield it from judicial review.


Keywords: GS-II: Polity: Government policies
Daily Current Affairs

ISRO to Launch Teleos-2 Satellite

In News: ISRO to launch Singapore’s TeLEOS-2 satellite

About TeLEOS-2 Satellite

  • The Teleos-2 satellite is a 750-kilogram Earth Observation Satellite (EOS) developed by ST Engineering in Singapore.
  • It will be launched by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on its 55th mission using the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C55).
  • The PSLV is a third-generation launch vehicle developed solely in India, capable of launching multiple payloads into orbit including Geosynchronous and Geostationary orbits.
  • The Teleos-2 satellite will provide imagery that can be used for hotspot monitoring and haze management, air crash search and rescue operations, and other applications.
  • It is designed to capture round-the-clock, all-weather satellite imagery, making it a valuable tool for a range of industries and organizations.

Do you know?

This is not the first launch of a Singaporean satellite from India as in 2022, the ISRO launched three Singaporean satellites with the PSLVC-53 mission:

  • DS-EO satellite: It carried an Electro-Optic, multi-spectral payload with 0.5 m resolution imaging capability.
  • SCOOB-I: It was the first satellite in the Student Satellite Series (S3-I), a hands-on student training program of NTU School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering.
  • NeuSAR: It is a 155 kg microsatellite designed for Earth observation and has a Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) payload with a resolution of up to 1 meter for providing high-resolution images.


Keywords: GS-III: SnT: Space Technology
Daily Current Affairs

Electromagnetic Ion Cyclotron Waves

In News: A team of scientists from the Indian Institute of Geomagnetism studies the EMIC waves at the Indian Antarctic station, Maitri. 

About Electromagnetic Ion Cyclotron (EMIC) waves:

  • EMIC waves are a type of plasma wave and plays an important role in the precipitation of killer electrons, which can be hazardous to space-borne technology.
  • These waves can resonate with electrons with a wide energy range, from 500 keV to hundreds of MeV, and make them precipitate to high-latitude atmosphere.
  • These waves are observed in the Earth’s magnetosphere where they interact with charged particles and control the overall dynamics of the Earth's magnetosphere.
  • They are generated when plasma instabilities excite ion cyclotron waves that resonate with protons causing the protons to oscillate around the magnetic field lines, creating the EMIC waves.
  • The short period decreases with an increase in the peak frequency of the EMIC wave, and stronger EMIC wave events were likely to have a higher peak frequency.
  • EMIC waves have been studied extensively by scientists to understand their characteristic role in the Earth's magnetosphere and its impact on space technology.


Keywords: GS-III: Science and Tech: Space
Daily Current Affairs

Tea Mosquito Bug - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, The United Planters’ Association of Southern India (UPASI) has sought government intervention to curb infestation of tea mosquito bug (TMB).

About Tea Mosquito Bug:

  • The Tea Mosquito Bug (Helopeltis theivora) is a major sucking pest of tea (Camellia sinensis L.) in most tea-producing countries.
  • The nymphs and adults of the Tea Mosquito Bug suck the sap from tender leaves, buds and young shoots, which results in heavy crop losses.
  • It also damages the plants by inserting eggs into their tissues.
  • TMB has affected both low and high-elevation tea plantations.
  • Identification of the pest: Adult bugs are in black colour with red thorax, black and white abdomen and greenish brown wings.
  • Prevention:
    • It can be controlled by using synthetic pesticides.
      • However, the 2014 Plant Protection Code (PPC) from the Tea Board of India restricts the use of harmful pesticides to keep the tea safe and free from harmful pesticides.


  • The UPASI is an apex body of planters of tea, coffee, rubber, cardamom and pepper in the Southern States of India viz. Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka in existence since 1893.


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

PM-MITRA - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, Union Minister of Textiles, integrated Textile Park in Lucknow and Hardoi districts under PM Mega Integrated Textile Sector and Apparel (PM Mitra) in Lucknow.


  • PM MITRA Park will be developed by a Special Purpose Vehicle which will be owned by the Central and State Government and in a Public Private Partnership (PPP) Mode.
  • Each MITRA Park will have an incubation centre, common processing house and a common effluent treatment plant and other textile related facilities such as design centres and testing centres.

More Information:

  • The Government of India announced the sites for setting up of 7 PM Mega Integrated Textile Regions and Apparel (PM MITRA) Parks for the Textile industry.
  • The Parks will come up in Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Gujarat, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra.
  • The Parks will be set up at Greenfield or Brownfield sites.
  • The setting up the 7 PM MITRA Parks was announced in the Union Budget 2021-22.
  • It is in line with the vision of ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat’ and to position India strongly on the Global textiles map.
  • It is inspired by the 5F vision of the Prime Minister of India.
    • The ‘5F’ Formula encompasses - farm to fibre; fibre to factory; factory to fashion; fashion to foreign.


Keywords: General Studies – 3 Growth & Development, inclusive growth
Daily Current Affairs

G-7 Led Climate Club - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Germany is hosting this year’s meeting of leaders from the Group of Seven leading economies in the Bavarian resort of Elmau.

About G-7 Led Climate Club:

  • G-7 established Climate Club, as an intergovernmental forum that aims to support the rapid and ambitious implementation of the Paris Agreement, which seeks to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
  • The club is to be established by the end of 2022.
  • The club will promote collaboration, help maintain competitiveness and make climate protection a competitive advantage.
  • The G7 is an informal grouping of seven advanced economies, i.e., Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, United States, and European Union.
  • It focusses on 3 pillars:
    • advancing transparent policies to achieve climate neutrality (reducing all greenhouse gases as much as possible),
    • transforming industries to accelerate decarbonisation,
    • facilitating partnerships and cooperation to encourage climate action.


Keywords: General Studies –3 Environment
Daily Current Affairs

Animal Birth Control Rules - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news?  Recently, the Central Government has notified the Animal Birth Control Rules, under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Act, 1960 and after superseding the Animal Birth Control (Dog) Rules, 2001.

About Animal Birth Control Rules

  • This programme for the sterilization and immunization of stray dogs are to be carried out by the respective local bodies/municipalities/Municipal Corporations and Panchayats.
  • Implementing Agency: Animal Welfare Board of India.
  • The Municipal Corporations need to implement the Animal Birth Control Rules and Anti Rabies Program jointly.
  • Cruelty involved for carrying out the Animal Birth Control Rules programme needs to be addressed.
  • It also provide guidelines on how to deal with the human and stray dog conflicts without relocating the dogs in an area.


Keywords: GS-3 Science and Technology
Daily Current Affairs

Zemithang - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, Arunachal Pradesh hosts a Buddhist meeting at Zemithang, Dalai Lama’s first halt during his flight from Tibet in 1959.


  • Zemithang or Zimithang, in the Pangchen Valley, is a village and the last circle headquarters bordering Bhutan and Tibet. The place on the bank of the Nyamjang Chu (river) is about 96 km from Tawang, the district headquarters.
  • Zemithang means “sand valley” and the people of the area are referred to as Pangchenpa, meaning “people who gave up sin”.
  • China contests the Zemithang circle’s border with Tibet along the Namka Chu and Sumdorong Chu valleys.
  • Zemithang is also home to the Monpa people, an ethnic group with a unique culture and traditions. The Monpas are known for their colorful festivals, such as Losar (the Tibetan New Year), and their beautiful handicrafts, including hand-woven carpets and traditional clothing.
  • Gorsam Chorten, a sacred Buddhist stupa, and the Sangti Valley are the important sites in Zemithang


Keywords: GS-1 Culture and Geography
Daily Current Affairs

River Hindon - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, the government approved four projects for pollution abatement in the Shamli district to clean River Hindon.


  • Hindon River is an important tributary of the Yamuna River.
  • This river is sand-witch between two major rivers: Ganga on the left and Yamuna on the right.
  • Hindon originates from upper Shiwalik (Lower Himalayas). It is a purely rain-fed river with a catchment area of about 7,083 sq. km.
  • This river has a total run of about 400 km.
  • The width of the Hindon River ranges from 20 m to 160 m.


Major tributaries of Yamuna River are: Tons, Giri, Hindon, Chambal, Banas, Kali Sindh, Parbati, Sind, Betwa, Dashan, and Ken


Keywords: GS-1 Geography
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