Read Daily Current Affairs of 22nd January 2020 for UPSC Civil Services (IAS) Prelims and Mains Exam 2020.
Read Current Affairs Notes of 22nd January 2020 for UPSC Civil Services Prelims and Mains Examination 2020. Highlighting all National and International contemporary issues important from the exam point of view.
GS-2, GS-3, Prelims
Topic: Economic and Social Development-Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector Initiatives, etc.
Respondents can fill in census data online
- The second phase of the decennial census 2021, will have an option of ‘self-enumeration’. People can go online and fill in the census data.
- This makes the 2021 census to be the first-ever census to be conducted with mixed mode approach.
- After filling the census data, they will be provided with a reference number. When the government-sent enumerators come for collecting the data, then they can be provided with this reference number.
- The second phase will be carried out between 9th-28th February 2021. Over 30 lakh enumerators will be assigned the responsibility of collecting details of 650-800 people through both online and offline modes.
- The first phase of the census, which is to be carried out from April 1 to September 30 this year will not have the online data-filling option.
- The first phase is a House Listing and Housing Census. The Registrar General of India (RGI) notified the 31 columns for which the enumerators will seek information from the people. Some of the things for which the information will be collected are:
- Whether the respondent has access to LPG/PNG connection
- If the respondent owns a radio, transistor or a television
- If the respondent has access to internet
- Whether the respondent owns a laptop, computer, telephone, mobile phone, etc.
- The National Population Register (NPR) will be simultaneously updated. Since providing information under the NPR is voluntary, several states have opposed the NPR so the process of sensitizing the states regarding NPR are going on.
- Confidentiality of data is guaranteed by the Census Act, 1948. It also provides that non-compliance or violation of any provision of the Act by both public and the census officials will attract penalty.
Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.
It will take decades to complete rail projects: govt.
- Railways need Rs. 50 lakh crores to complete the sanctioned projects till 2030 and with the annual capital expenditure of about Rs. 1.6 lakh crore (highest ever), it will take decades to complete them.
- The Ministry of Railways told this to a parliamentary panel and added that the only way out isà going for Public-Private Partnership (PPP)/private investment in the railway sector.
- The union government has said that it does not want to privatise the Railways.
- Ongoing projects as on 1 August 2019 include:
- 188 new linesà out of the total length of 21,295 km, only 2,622 km has been commissioned by Railways so far at a cost of Rs. 85,536 crores (as on March 31,2019).
- 55 gauge conversionà out of total sanctioned 7,274 km, only 3,573 km has been commissioned at a cost of Rs. 19,640 crores.
- 255 doubling of existing linesà out of total sanctioned 20,500 km, only 2,800 km has been commissioned at a cost of Rs. 48,342 crores.
- Government has also set a target of 100% electrification of broad-gauge lines by 2023.
- The panel has asked that ‘why is the Railways taking over new projects without first completing the unfinished ones.’ The Railways have been asked to come up with clarification at the next meeting.
Topic: Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.
India, co-builder of Hawaii telescope, wants it shifted out of proposed site
- India is a co-builder (committed $200 million i.e. 10% of the proposed cost) of one of the world’s largest telescopes along with 4 other countries.
- The TMT or Thirty Metre Telescope built at a cost of $2 billion have been protested against from over a decade.
- The proposed site for the telescope which is at Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano in Hawaii, is considered sacred by the indigenous Hawaiians. They have also argued that the site already has a lot of observatories and another massive observatory should not come up here.
- India has clarified its stand on shifting the site of the observatory because even if the telescope is set up here, there is a danger of future agitations. The project has already been delayed for long.
Topic: Parliament and State legislatures—structure, functioning, the conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.
SC for curbs on powers of the speaker.
- SC has asked the Parliament to strip the exclusive power of Legislative Assembly speakers to decide whether a legislator should be disqualified under the anti-defection law.
- Instead, an independent tribunal should be appointed to decide the fate of the MP or an MLA.
- The disqualification power is granted to the Speakers under the Tenth Schedule.
- This is the second time that the Supreme court has highlighted the issue of taking away the disqualification powers from the Speakers.
Topic: Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
India, brazil to sign Strategic Action Plan
- India and Brazil will sign a Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT), to upgrade their Strategic Partnership, when the Brazilian President visits India on Republic Day celebrations as a chief guest.
- The BIT will serve as an “umbrella agreement” which will include plans regarding:
- Increasing defence cooperation
- Technology sharing
- Logistics agreement
- Bilateral relations between both the countries is based on:
- Common global vision
- Shared democratic values
- Commitment to foster economic growth of both the countries
- The bilateral relations between both the countries were elevated to Strategic Partnership in 2006.
Topic: India and its neighbourhood- relations.
Time to resolve ‘pending issues’ with India: Oli
- With majority of governments in both India and Nepal, the Nepal Prime Minister has shown interest in resolving the pending issues between both the countries.
- He was referring to the Kalapani issue, which is a territorial issue between both the countries.
- India by showing its continued position over the territory as part of Uttarakhand, included it in its new political map published in November 2019. The issue was reignited after the map was published.
- Prime minister KP Sharma Oli referred to issue resolving on a video-link before the inauguration of the Integrated Check Post at Jogbani-Biratnagar à built with Indian assistance.
- Prime ministers of both the countries have referred to India’s contribution to the earthquake relief and rebuilding work in Gorkha and Nuwakot districts of Nepal.