Friday, 21st April 2023

Table of contents

1   Editorial of the day


India’s population: Opportunities and Challenges

2   Daily Current Affairs


Indian Nutrition Rating (INR) - Edukemy Current Affairs


State of World Population 2023


Civil Union and its difference from Marriage


JC Bose - Edukemy Current Affairs


Global Unicorn Index - Edukemy Current Affairs


Saurashtra Tamil Sangamam - Edukemy Current Affairs


Digital Highways - Edukemy Current Affairs


SATHI Portal - Edukemy Current Affairs


Kamkhya Temple - Edukemy Current Affairs


MAHARISHI Initiative - Edukemy Current Affairs

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Editorial of the day

India’s population: Opportunities and Challenges

Exam View: India’s population statistics are not a cause for alarm; Government initiatives to control population; Demographic dividend: Opportunities and Challenges

Context: The UN Population Fund has projected that India could overtake China as the world’s most populous country in the next two months. India’s population is estimated to touch 142.86 crore by the middle of the year, a little more than China’s 142.57 crore.

Background: India’s population statistics are not a cause for alarm

  • Demographers today use a variety of metrics like fertility and replacement rates, age and region-wise data to arrive at a more layered understanding of population dynamics.
  • The rate of population growth has slowed down appreciably in the past 10 years as per UN report and successive National Family Health Surveys.
  • India’s total fertility rate came down to 2 in 2020-2021 from about 3.4 in the early Nineties.
  • The UN Population Fund reckons that a TFR of 2.1 is necessary for a country to attain population stability. The country is on course to achieve this if it maintains this rate in the next few years.

Decoding the editorial: Government initiatives to control population

  • Past: Except for a lapse into forced sterilisation during the Emergency, governments in India have relied on persuasion and education.
  • Present: Coercive methods like making people with more than two children ineligible for government jobs, have become a part of the family planning playbook of some states.
    • Such tendencies must be curbed.
    • The UN report rightly points out that, “Global experience shows family planning targets can lead to coercion of women”.
  • Future: In parts of the country where the TFR is above the national average (Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Meghalaya), governments must follow the time-tested methods of empowering women and investing in their education and strengthening healthcare facilities.

Demographic dividend: Opportunities and Challenges

  • Two-thirds of India’s total population is between the ages of 15 and 64.
  • Opportunities:
    • Increased Labour Force that enhances the productivity of the economy.
    • Increased fiscal space created by the demographic dividend to divert resources from spending on children to investing in physical and human infrastructure.
    • Rise in women’s workforce that naturally accompanies a decline in fertility, and which can be a new source of growth.
    • Increase in savings rate, as the working age also happens to be the prime period for saving.
    • Rapid industrialisation and urbanisation because of a higher number of employment seeking population that would force higher economic activities.
  • Challenges:
    • World Bank data shows that female labour participation in India plunged from 32 per cent in 2005 to 19 per cent in 2021.
    • Most of the new jobs that will be created in the future will be highly skilled and lack of skill in the Indian workforce is a major challenge.
    • Low human development parameters as India ranks 130 out of 189 countries in UNDP’s Human Development Index.
    • Informal nature of the economy in India is another hurdle in reaping the benefits of demographic transition in India.

Education, skill development and creating opportunities, especially for the youth of disadvantaged sections and women, will hold the key to the country using the demographic dividend to its advantage in the next 20 years.

Keywords: GS-Paper 1: population and associated issues, GS-Paper 2: Human resources
Daily Current Affairs

Indian Nutrition Rating (INR) - Edukemy Current Affairs

In News: NAPi, a think tank focused on nutrition policy, has provided support to the social media influencer involved in the Cadbury's Bournvita controversy.


  • INR mandates pre-packaged foods to carry a star rating to discourage the consumption of foods high in sugar, salt, and fats.
  • The INR system rates the overall nutritional profile for packaged food by assigning it a rating from ½ % star (least healthy) to 5 stars (healthiest).
  • More stars indicate the food product is better positioned to provide for the daily human need of nutrients.
  • The rating shall be displayed close in proximity to the name or brand name of the product on front of the pack.
  • To generate the star-rating logo for the product, food businesses have to submit nutritional profiles of the products concerned on FSSAI’s FoSCoS (Food Safety Compliance System) portal.
  • Front Labelling: The FSSAI has been discussing the possibility of front-of-pack labeling. According to this, brands would need to put a notification indicating if a food product was high in fat, sugar, and salt (HFSS).

Rating Process:

  • Items would be given scores based on contribution of energy and content of saturated fat, sugar, sodium, fruit and vegetables (FV), nuts, legumes, and millets (NLM), dietary fibre, and protein per 100 gm of solid or 100 ml liquid foods.
  • Solid food with a score of more than 25 will be given 0.5 stars, and those with a score less than – (minus)11 will get 5 stars.

Exempted Products under Indian Nutrition Rating

  • Foods including milk and milk products, whey, butter oil, ghee, vegetable oil and fat, fresh and frozen fruit and vegetables, fresh and frozen meat, eggs, fish, flour, and sweeteners will not be required to display the star rating.
  • Carbonated beverages without any energy or sugar will also not be eligible for declaring the rating.

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI):

  • Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) is an autonomous statutory body established under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 (FSS Act). Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India is the administrative Ministry of FSSAI.

Functions of FSSAI

  • Framing of regulations to lay down the standards and guidelines of food safety.
  • Granting FSSAI food safety license and certification for food businesses.
  • Laying down procedure and guidelines for laboratories in food businesses.
  • To provide suggestions to the government in framing the policies.
  • To collect data regarding contaminants in foods products, identification of emerging risks and introduction of rapid alert system.
  • Creating an information network across the country about food safety.
  • Promote general awareness about food safety and food standards.

Nutrition Advocacy in Public Interest (NAPi):

  • Nutrition advocacy in public interest is an essential aspect of promoting healthy eating habits and improving the overall health and wellbeing of a population. It involves the promotion of policies, programs, and initiatives aimed at improving access to nutritious food, providing education on healthy eating habits, and reducing barriers to healthy eating.




Keywords: GS – 2 Government Policies & Interventions
Daily Current Affairs

State of World Population 2023

In News: United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) releases “State of World Population Report 2023

About State of World Population 2023 report:

  • Findings on India:
    • India's population is estimated to reach 142.86 crore by mid-2023, which is marginally ahead of China's population at 142.57 crore, making India the world's most populous country.
    • Nearly 68% of India's total population is between the ages of 15 and 64 years, which is considered the working population of a country.
    • About 25% of India's population is between 0-14 years; 18% between 10 and 19 years, 26% between 10 and 24 years, and 7% above 65 years.
    • India's total fertility rate (births per woman in the reproductive age) is estimated at 2.0 while the average life expectancy at birth for males in India is 71 years while for females it is 74 years.
    • India has a youth population of nearly 254 million youth (15-24 years) which can be a source of innovation, new thinking, and lasting solutions.
    • Nearly 63% of Indians identified economic issues as the top concerns, followed by environmental concerns at 46%, and sexual and reproductive health and rights, and human rights concerns at 30%.
  • Global Trends:
    • The global population touched 8 billion in November 2022, but it is growing at its slowest rate since 1950, having fallen under 1% in 2020.
    • The report indicates that population anxieties are widespread, and governments are increasingly adopting policies aimed at raising, lowering or maintaining fertility rates.
    • The report has also called for leaders to ask whether individuals, especially women, are able to freely make their own reproductive choices – a question whose answer, too often, is no.


Keywords: GS-III: Economy: Important reports
Daily Current Affairs

Civil Union and its difference from Marriage

In News: A five-judge bench of the Supreme Court of India began hearing petitions seeking legal recognition of same-sex marriage

About Civil Union

  • A "civil union" refers to the legal status that allows same-sex couples specific rights and responsibilities normally conferred upon married couples.
  • It resembles a marriage and brings with it employment, inheritance, property, and parental rights among others.
  • In several countries, prior to legalizing same-sex marriages, people are allowed to live as same-sex couples and marry without being provided a formal recognition of the same.
  • Major countries which recognise the right of same-sex couples to enter into civil unions includes Sweden, Norway, Austria, Brazil, Uruguay, Andorra, and

Difference from Marriage:

  • Civil unions are often seen as an alternative to marriage for same-sex couples who are not allowed to marry under their country's laws or for those who do not wish to marry for personal reasons.
  • Unlike civil Union, marriage is a legal union between two individuals that is recognized by law and has traditionally been between a man and a woman.
  • Marriage typically provides additional legal and societal benefits, such as tax breaks, access to healthcare and insurance, and inheritance rights.


Keywords: GS-II: Important Government Policies
Daily Current Affairs

JC Bose - Edukemy Current Affairs

In News: Researchers from Tel Aviv University in Israel picks up distress noises made by plants reinforcing J.C. Bose’s demonstration on plants behavior.

About J.C Bose:

  • Jagadish Chandra Bose was a pioneering Indian scientist who demonstrated that plants can feel pleasure and pain like animals.
  • He was the first Indian to make a powerful impact on modern science, ahead of Srinivasa Ramanujan, C V Raman, or Satyendra Nath Bose.
  • He is remembered for his work on wireless transmission of signals, physiology of plants besides being credited as one of the first contributors to solid-state physics.
  • He generated electromagnetic signals in the microwave range and was the first to come up with radio receivers that enabled wireless telegraphy.
  • Bose used instruments to detect the faintest signals from the plants and studied the biology of movements, feelings, and nervous systems.
  • His work on the physiology of plants marked the first demonstration that plants could feel pleasure and pain just like animals.
  • Bose's refusal to obtain patents for his work and make money from science deprived him of the Nobel Prize.


Keywords: GS-III: Science and Technology: Physics
Daily Current Affairs

Global Unicorn Index - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? India has 3rd-highest number of unicorns, gazelles, according to Hurun’s Global Unicorn Index 2023.


  • India retains 3rd spot, in the list of countries with most number of Unicorns as per Global unicorn index.
  • The report, indicates that India (68 unicorns) continues to be the world's third-largest country with the highest number of unicorns, following the USA (666) and China (316).
  • India added 14 new unicorns since pandemic began.
  • However, none of the Indian startups made it to the top 10 list.
  • BYJU’s ($22 billion) is top-most unicorn in India, followed by Swiggy and Dream11 (both at $8 billion).
  • The report also mentioned that the number of Indian unicorns established outside of India is higher than those located within India.
  • China and India have a higher proportion of gazelles and unicorns.


  • Unicorns are privately held, venture-capital backed startups that have reached a value of $1 billion.


  • According to Hurun, a gazelle is a start-up funded in the 2000s, is worth over $500 million, is not listed yet, and is most likely to become a unicorn within three years.


Keywords: General Studies –3 Employment, GROWTH & DEVELOPMENT
Daily Current Affairs

Saurashtra Tamil Sangamam - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Nearly 3,000 people are expected to attend Saurashtra Tamil Sangamam.


  • It is a 10-day festival that celebrates the age-old ties and cultural links between the two coastal States of Gujarat and Tamil Nadu.
  • The festival aims to highlight the cultural diversity and strength of India and to reconnect people with pilgrimage destinations and cultural heritage.
  • This event will take place at multiple locations in Gujarat such as Somnath, Dwarka and the Statue of Unity at Kevadia.
  • Background:
    • Centuries ago, invasions between 600 and 1000 years ago forced numerous individuals to migrate from Saurashtra in Gujarat and establish new settlements in Tamil Nadu's districts around Madurai, now known as Tamil Saurashtrian.
  • Logo:
    • It is a representation of the merging of the silk fabric expertise of the Tamil Saurashtrian people and the textile industry of Gujarat.
    • A young woman, posing in a dancing posture with dandiya (Gujarat)and bharatanatyam (Tamil Nadu), embodies the coming together of two art forms.


Keywords: General Studies – 2 Polity & Governance
Daily Current Affairs

Digital Highways - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? NHAI is working towards development of around 10,000 km of Optic Fibre Cables (OFC) infrastructure across the country by FY2024-25.

About Digital Highways:

  • Digital Highways or Roads are digital platforms that offer shared public and private services.
  • They utilize data, technology, and connectivity to improve the Strategic Road Network (SRN) in terms of design, construction, operation, and usage.
  • This will result in safer travel, quicker deliveries, and better experiences for all.

Optic Fibre Cables (OFC):

  • Fiber-optic cables are like tubes that hold tiny wires made of glass or plastic.
  • They use light to send information much faster than regular wires that use electricity.
  • Metal wires are preferred for transmission in optical fibre communication as signals travel with less damage.

  • The optical fiber works on the principle of total internal reflection (TIR).
    • TIR is the complete reflection of a ray of light within a medium such as water or glass from the surrounding surfaces back into the medium.
  • OFC network will allow direct plug-and-play or ‘Fibre-on-demand’ model for the Telecom / Internet Services.
  • The network will be leased out on a Fixed Price Allotment mechanism on ‘Open for All’ basis through a web portal to eligible users.


Keywords: General Studies –3 Infrastructure, Achievements of Indians in Science & Technology
Daily Current Affairs

SATHI Portal - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister launched the SATHI (Seed Traceability, Authentication and Holistic Inventory) Portal and Mobile App.


  • It is a Centralized Online System for seed traceability, authentication and inventory designed to deal with the challenges of seed production, quality seed identification and seed certification.
  • It has been developed by the National Informatics Centre in collaboration with the Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.
  • Theme: ‘Uttam Beej – Samriddh Kisan’.
  • SATHI portal will ensure quality assurance system, identify the source of seed in the seed production chain.
  • The system will consist of integrated 7 verticals of the seed chain - Research Organisation, Seed Certification, Seed Licensing, Seed Catalogue, Dealer to Farmer Sales, Farmer Registration and Seed DBT.
  • Seeds with valid certification can only be sold by valid licensed dealers to centrally registered farmers who will receive subsidy through DBT directly into their pre-validated bank accounts.


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

Kamkhya Temple - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, Prime Minister appreciated Assam’s “landmark” Maa Kamakhya initiative.

About Kamkhya Temple:

  • The Kamakhya temple situated at the Nilachal hills in Guwahati is one of the oldest and most revered centers of Tantric practices.
  • Temple dedicated to Goddess Kamakhya is one of the 51 Shakti Peethas in country.
  • It is located near the bank of Brahmaputra River.
  • Temple has four chambers:
    • Garbha griha (sanctum sanctorum), which is a cave under the ground level that houses a rock fissure instead of an idol.
    • Three mandapas known as calanta, pancharatna and natamandira.
    • Ambubachi mela of Kamakhya temple is considered as the biggest religious congregation in Northeast India.

History of the temple

  • It is believed that the temple is where parts of Devi Sati’s corpse fell while her husband Lord Shiva performed taandav.
  • As per religious beliefs, her genitals and womb fell where the present-day temple is located.


Keywords: General Studies –1 Art & Culture, General Studies –2 Government Policies & Interventions
Daily Current Affairs

MAHARISHI Initiative - Edukemy Current Affairs

Why in news? Recently, Participants of G20 Meeting of Agriculture Chief Scientists on “Sustainable Agriculture and Food System for Healthy People and Planet” unanimously supported launch of MAHARISHI.


  • MAHARISHI Initiative will focus on Research and Awareness about agro-biodiversity, food security, and nutrition aligning with International Year of Millets 2023.
  • Secretariat: Indian Institute of Millets Research (IIMR), Hyderabad
  • Technical Support: International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), One CGIAR Centres, and other international organizations
  • Millets are known as nutri-cereals or superfoods, mainly grown on marginal land in dry areas of temperate, sub-tropical and tropical regions.


Keywords: General Studies –2 Government Policies & Interventions
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UPSC Daily Current Affairs focuses on learning current events on a daily basis. An aspirant needs to study regular and updated information about current events, news, and relevant topics that are important for UPSC aspirants. It covers national and international affairs, government policies, socio-economic issues, science and technology advancements, and more.

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