Daily News Analysis 30th Dec. 2023 (The Hindu)


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Here are the topics covered for  30th December 2023:

GS-2: Press and Periodic Bill

GS-3: Epaulettes for Admirals, Core Sector Growth ,United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA)

Facts For Prelims :Nicaragua, XPoSAT


Press and Periodic Bill


  • The Government of India has recently introduced the Press and Registration of Periodicals Bill, 2023 to streamline the process for publishers and printing press owners.
  • The Bill aims to modernize and decriminalise certain aspects of the existing legislation.


Highlights of Bill

  • The key focus of the Ease of Doing Business initiative is to facilitate publishers by streamlining operations and removing unnecessary procedural obstacles. 
  • The proposed measures include simplifying procedures, eliminating the need for frequent declarations to District Magistrates (DMs), and replacing criminal convictions with financial penalties for specific violations, thereby contributing to the decriminalization of the colonial-era statute.


What Changes Have Been Proposed?

  • The new provisions simplify procedures by eliminating the declaration process with District Magistrates or local authorities, replacing it with an online \”intimation\” for printing presses. 
  • Additionally, the simultaneous processing of title allotment and registration applications has been introduced to streamline administrative processes. 
  • Furthermore, the requirement for a no-objection from a specified authority has been waived for most registrations, except for government-proposed periodicals.



Epaulettes for Admirals


  • Indian Navy revealed a redesigned set of epaulettes for senior officers\’ uniforms, signalling efforts to move away from colonial legacies in customs and traditions.


About New Epaulletes

  • The newly designed epaulettes are intended for officers holding the ranks of Admiral, Vice Admiral, Rear Admiral, Surgeon Vice Admiral, and Surgeon Rear Admiral in the Navy. 
  • Among these ranks, excluding medical officers, there are approximately 100 officers of Rear Admiral and higher ranks in the Navy. 
  • The Navy, with a sanctioned strength of around 12,000 officers, currently faces a shortage of approximately 1,777 officers according to official data.
  • The new epaulettes feature a redesigned golden Navy button displaying the updated naval crest unveiled last year. 
  • The epaulettes include a red octagon as the backdrop to the national emblem, along with a sword and a telescope. 
  • For medical officers, the epaulettes have an additional red border
  • In contrast, the previous epaulettes for the same ranks had a red backing for the national emblem but lacked an octagonal shape. 
  • The new design eliminates the colonial-era fouled anchor, present in the earlier Navy button. 
  • The revamped epaulettes showcase an Indian sword and a telescope, symbolizing the cutting edge of national power, winning wars, and a long-term vision, respectively. 
  • The stars on the new epaulettes are also designed differently than their predecessors. 
  • The red octagon represents eight cardinal directions, symbolizing an all-encompassing long-term vision, inspired by the naval ensign unveiled last year and the Rajmudra of Maratha ruler Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, reflecting the rich maritime legacy of the Maratha Navy.


Core Sector Growth


  • India\’s eight core sectors grew at a six-month low pace of 7.8% in November, down from 12% in October, with the cement sector contracting for the first time this year, and overall production reaching its lowest level in 13 months.


Why Low Growth?

  • In November, India\’s eight core sectors showed mixed trends, posting a growth rate of 7.8%, surpassing the 5.7% recorded in the same month last year but marking a notable moderation from the 12% expansion in October. 
  • While coal and refinery products contributed to increased production, cement and crude oil production contracted, with cement witnessing a sharp decline of 3.6%, primarily due to a slowdown in construction activities prompted by air pollution-related restrictions in some states.


Core Sector

  • In the first eight months (April-November) of the current fiscal year 2023-24, India\’s core sector output expanded by 8.6%, compared to 8.1% in the same period of the previous fiscal year (2022-23). 
  • Notably, coal output grew by 10.9%, the lowest since June 2023, attributed to reduced thermal power generation due to lower power demand pre-winter. 
  • Steel production expanded by 9.1%, while electricity generation saw a growth of 5.6% in November 2023, a decline from the 20.3% expansion in October. 
  • Refinery products and fertilizer production recorded growth rates of 12.4% and 3.4%, respectively, in November 2023.


Assam Peace Pact


  • The Union Home Ministry and the Assam government have signed a memorandum of settlement with the pro-talks faction of the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA).


About the Pact

  • As part of the peace agreement, the government has agreed to reserve 97 assembly seats in Assam for indigenous people, commit an investment worth Rs 1.5 lakh crore, and declare the annual Assam floods a \’national priority\’.
  • The tripartite deal was signed between the pro-talks ULFA led by Arabinda Rajkhowa, Home Minister Amit Shah, and Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma. 
  • The ULFA delegation, led by Rajkhowa, included 16 members as general secretary Anup Chetia, foreign secretary Sasadhar Choudhury, and commander-in-chief Mrinal Hazarika. 
  • The agreement involved 13 members from civil society and came after 12 years of peace talks. 
  • The anti-talks faction of the outfit, ULFA Independent led by Paresh Barua, is yet to come to the table.
  • During the signing of the deal, the Home Minister highlighted the historical challenges of violence in Assam and emphasized the significance of the occasion for the state. 
  • He also pointed out that, in the last five years, nine peace and border-related agreements have been signed across the Northeast, contributing to the establishment of peace in significant parts of the region.



Facts For Prelims



  • Nicaragua, the largest country in Central America, shares borders with Honduras and Costa Rica and is situated between the Caribbean and the Pacific Ocean. 
  • Managua serves as its capital
  • Boasting a diverse population of six million, encompassing mestizo, Indigenous, European, and African heritage, the predominant language spoken is Spanish.



  • ISRO\’s PSLVC58 Mission aims to launch the XPoSAT Satellite into a low-inclination orbit, followed by adjustments to a 350 km circular orbit for 3-axis stabilization. 
  • The mission includes the PSLV Orbital Experimental Module 3 experiment, focusing on 10 identified payloads for Orbital Platform experiments. 

XPoSAT is ISRO\’s first dedicated scientific satellite for space-based polarization measurements of X-ray emissions from celestial sources, equipped with POLIX and XSPECT payloads developed by the Raman Research Institute and Space Astronomy Group of URSC, Bengaluru, respectively.

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