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Here are the topics covered for 21 September 2023:Women Reservation, One Health Framework, Digital Infrastructure, Coral Mass Ejections, GDP Growth, Shreyas Scheme, Pink Diamonds
Table of Content
- Women Reservation
- One Health Framework
- Digital Infrastructure
- Coral Mass Ejections
- GDP Growth
Facts for Prelims
- Shreyas Scheme
- Pink Diamonds
- The Union Cabinet has approved the Women’s Reservation Bill, which seeks to reserve 33% of seats in Parliament and legislative assemblies for women, after 27 years of pending.
About the Bill
- Gradual increase in the number of women candidates contesting Lok Sabha elections, from 45 in 1957 to 726 in 2019.
- Disparity in the representation of women MPs despite increased candidacy.
- Introduction of the Women’s Reservation Bill (Amendment) in 1996.
- Aim to reserve 33% of seats in Parliament and legislative assemblies for women.
- Challenges and political opposition have delayed the bill’s implementation.
- Expected rollout of the bill after the delimitation process, potentially in 2029.
Significance of the Bill
- Historical underrepresentation of women in India’s political landscape.
- The Women’s Reservation Bill seeks to rectify this imbalance by reserving seats for women in legislative bodies.
- The symbolic importance of the bill in recognizing and valuing women’s contributions in politics.
- Granting women equal access to the political arena and breaking down traditional barriers.
- Building leadership and governance skills for women in politics, serving as role models.
- The power to influence policies in areas like healthcare, education, and gender-based violence.
- Advocacy for gender-specific issues such as maternal health and childcare.
- Enhanced decision-making through diverse perspectives.
- The potential for social and cultural change by challenging traditional gender norms.
One Health Framework
- OECD released a report on antimicrobial resistance (AMR) titled “Embracing a One Health Framework to Fight Antimicrobial Resistance.”
- The report is based on data from OECD, EU, EEA countries, and G20 countries.
- It emphasizes the severe health and economic consequences of AMR.
Findings of the Report
- AMR is often referred to as a “silent pandemic” because of its significant health and economic impact.
- It leads to around 79,000 deaths each year in 34 OECD and EU/EEA countries, exceeding the mortality rates of diseases like influenza, tuberculosis, and AIDS.
- Over 4.3 million infections are reported annually, particularly affecting individuals aged 65 and older.
- The AMR problem is significantly driven by three bacterial strains: Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumonia, and Staphylococcus aureus.
- These strains are linked to a significant portion of antibiotic-resistant infections, contributing to one in three cases.
They are also responsible for three out of every four deaths related to AMR.
- India’s approach to Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) is a notable tale of technological innovation and inclusive development.
Digital Public Infrastructure
- It is gaining importance in delivering public services.
- DPI serves as the foundational framework for essential digital services.
- It aims to bridge the gap between technology and the public.
- Governments and organizations worldwide are recognizing its significance.
Features of DPI
- DPI focuses on inclusive design, catering to diverse user needs.
- User-friendly interfaces ensure usability for users with varying levels of technological expertise.
- Localization through multiple languages enhances accessibility for non-English-speaking populations.
- Encryption safeguards user data during transmission and storage.
- Multi-factor authentication and identity verification enhance security.
- Regular audits and compliance with data protection regulations reduce cyber risks.
- Standardized protocols and APIs enable compatibility with various digital platforms.
- Data exchange between government agencies is facilitated for improved decision-making.
- The elastic infrastructure allows DPI to adapt to changing demands.
- Cloud-based solutions dynamically allocate resources as needed.
- Redundancy minimizes system failures.
- Disaster recovery plans ensure service continuity during unforeseen events.
Service-level agreements provide uptime guarantees, ensuring reliability.
Coral Mass Ejections
- CMEs are Coronal Mass Ejections from the Sun.
- They involve the release of significant amounts of plasma and magnetic fields.
- Various particles, including electrons, protons, and heavier ions, are expelled during CMEs.
- These ejections travel at high speeds into interplanetary space.
- CMEs can impact space weather and affect Earth’s magnetic field and communication systems.
- CMEs result from the instability of the Sun’s magnetic fields.
- The exact triggers still need to be fully understood but often involve changes or disruptions in magnetic loops on the Sun’s surface.
- CMEs are distinct from solar flares, although they can happen concurrently.
- Solar flares are short bursts of energy and radiation, while CMEs involve the expulsion of solar material into space.
Impact on Earth
- Geomagnetic storms can be triggered when CME magnetic fields interact with Earth’s magnetosphere, affecting satellite communications, navigation systems, and power grids.
- CMEs can lead to stunning auroras (Northern and Southern Lights) by energizing atmospheric particles.
Astronauts in space and high-altitude flight passengers may face increased radiation exposure during CME events.
- The Asian Development Bank (ADB) revised India’s economic growth forecast to 6.3% for this year. This revision is slightly lower than the previous estimate of 6.4%.
Observation by ADB
- The adjustment is attributed to factors such as declining exports and unpredictable rainfall patterns that may affect agricultural production.
- ADB economists increased the inflation forecast for the year to 5.5%, up from the previous estimate of 5% made in April.
- The projection for real GDP growth in 2024-25 remains at 6.7%.
- This is based on increased private investment and industrial output expectations in the coming years.
- Despite global uncertainties, India’s economy displayed robust growth of 7.8% in the first quarter of the fiscal year.
- The Asian Development Bank anticipates that this growth will continue, driven by strong domestic consumption, improving consumer confidence, and increased government capital expenditure in the coming years.
- The Asian Development Bank remains optimistic about investment prospects in the Indian economy.
- Although there was a decline in net foreign direct investment flows in the first quarter, dropping from $13.4 billion to $5 billion, the ADB maintains a positive outlook.
- ADB’s vision is to create a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific region.
- Despite regional successes, it still has a significant number of people living in poverty, with 263 million earning less than $1.90 a day and 1.1 billion earning less than $3.20 a day.
- ADB supports its member countries by offering various forms of assistance, including loans, technical aid, grants, and equity investments to promote social and economic development.
ADB enhances the impact of its support by engaging in policy dialogues, providing advisory services, and mobilizing financial resources through cofinancing operations from different sources.
FACTS FOR PRELIMS
- The SHREYAS scheme, launched in 2014, includes four central sector sub-schemes.
- It is designed to empower Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Other Backward Classes (OBCs) students through education.
- Over 2300 crore rupees have been allocated for the education of SC and OBC students since 2014.
- The scheme offers high-quality coaching to economically disadvantaged SC and OBC candidates.
- It prepares them for competitive and entrance exams for both public and private sector jobs.
- Additionally, it facilitates admissions to prestigious technical and professional higher education institutions.
- Pink diamonds are unique and distinct from colorless diamonds.
- They form when subjected to intense forces caused by colliding tectonic plates.
- This process causes their crystal lattices to twist and bend.
- Australia, particularly the Argyle mine, is a significant source of pink diamonds.
- These diamonds arrived on the Earth’s surface around 1.3 billion years ago during the breakup of the supercontinent Nuna.
Pink diamonds are among the rarest and most expensive gemstones globally.