News & Editorial Analysis 15 May 2023
The Hindu News Analysis
1 – Process of Extradition in India:
Topic à International Relations
In order to stand trial for a crime that was committed outside the state of refuge and is punishable under the laws of the requesting state, an extradited individual is sent back at the request of the other state.
The Supreme Court defined extradition as the act of transporting a person from one state to another so they can face justice for crimes they have already been accused of or found guilty of by the legal systems of the other state.
You can extradite people who have been charged with a crime but have not yet been brought to justice, people who have been tried and convicted but have escaped from jail, and people who have been judged guilty in absentia.
The extradition laws of India:
The extradition of a wanted criminal from India is governed by the Indian Extradition Act, 1962.
This includes sending people back to India as well as sending them elsewhere.
The extradition could be justified by a treaty India and another country have.
India now has extradition treaties with more than 40 foreign countries, in addition to agreements with 11 other countries.
According to Section 2(d) of The Indian Extradition Act 1962, a “Tradition Treaty” is a Treaty, Agreement, or Arrangement established by India with a Foreign State relating to the extradition of Fugitive Criminals that extends to and is required of India. Extradition agreements typically have a bilateral nature.
Only those crimes that are mentioned in the treaty are extradited.
It makes use of the idea of dual criminality, which states that the offence must be regarded as illegal under both the national laws of the requesting and the requested countries.
The only crime for which extradition should be sought is the one for which it is asked; the accused must, therefore, be made to appear guilty, at least in theory, to the desired nation.
The defendant must receive a fair trial.
Source à The Hindu
2 – Pashmina Shawls:
Topic àIndian Culture
Two distinct processes are used to create pashmina shawls: loom weaving (also known as kani shawls) and needle embroidery (also known as sozni shawls).
The three fundamental fabric types are shamtush, pashmina, and raffal.
Shah Tush, also referred to as the “King of Wool,” goes by the moniker Ring Shawl. It derives from a rare variety of Tibetan antelope that dwells at altitudes above 14000 feet in the Himalayan highlands.
An uncommon breed of goat named Capra hircus, which lives between 12000 and 14000 feet above sea level, produces the wool required to make pashmina, or cashmere.
A typical design of shawl made from merino wool tops are raffals.
About Geographical Indication Certification (GI):
GI is a classification used to identify goods having unique characteristics that originate in a certain area.
It is used in industrial, agricultural, and organic products.
By enabling their registration, the Geographical Indications of Commodities (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999 seeks to better protect geographical indications used in connection with items in India.
Additionally, it is protected under the World Trade Organization’s Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights Agreement (TRIPS).
Source à The Hindu
3 – Ground water pollution in India:
Topic àEnvironmental Conservation
Pesticides, fertilisers, poisonous byproducts of mining activities, untreated sewage from septic tanks, dangerous chemicals, and leaking landfills are a few examples of pollutants that may pollute groundwater through soil penetration and render it unfit for human use. As groundwater seeps into streams, lakes, and oceans, contamination can travel far beyond the initial contaminating source.
The underground holds the water that permeates the rocks and the earth.
Groundwater is created when rainwater seeps into the earth and fills any fissures, holes, or porous areas of an aquifer (essentially, an underground store of water).
About 22% of the world’s total water volume is subsurface water.
Around 25% of the freshwater on Earth, including that found in the oceans and permanent glaciers, comes from groundwater.
How Does Contamination Affect Groundwater?
Depending on the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of the aquifer, contaminants may move through it in a manner similar to how groundwater does.
Following the contours of the earth, water and other pollutants travel from recharge areas to discharge areas.
When the soil is porous and permeable, water and some forms of toxins can easily enter the aquifers underneath.
Because groundwater moves slowly, contaminants can remain concentrated and seep through rock crevices as a plume, contaminating the water table through dilution.
Sources of contamination for groundwater:
Natural disasters or a range of human activities, including residential, governmental, commercial, industrial, and agricultural ones, may cause groundwater contamination.
Biodiversity’s sources Natural elements like iron, manganese, arsenic, chlorides, fluorides, sulphates, and radionuclides that are found in rocks and soils, as well as organic waste that is decomposing, may dissolve in groundwater and offer health risks or unpleasant odours or colours.
Agriculture: High groundwater nitrate concentrations are the result of excessive and inefficient irrigation practises that let leftover nitrogen from crops leach into the water table.
Chemical spills, petroleum product spills, and improper hazardous waste disposal are all examples of industrial waste.
Municipal trash includes, among other things, degraded sewage lines, inadequate on-site sanitary facilities, and the unauthorised dumping of human and animal waste on private property. Pollution from landfills and septic tanks is also covered.
A salinity issue is being experienced in some areas of Punjab and Haryana as a result of unregulated groundwater extraction for agriculture.
Seawater intrusion is caused by groundwater pollution from excessive groundwater removal from coastal aquifers.
In Kachchh, Gujarat, uranium pollution has gotten worse as a result of falling groundwater levels.
Increased oxidative conditions occur with a decrease in groundwater levels. Uranium concentrations in shallow groundwater therefore increase.
Pipelines and Sewers Leakage: Sewer systems that transport waste may leak fluids into nearby groundwater and land. dirty conditions.
Among the numerous elements discovered in sewage and pipelines are organic molecules, inorganic salts, heavy metals, bacteria, viruses, industrial chemicals, and nitrogen.
utilised to aid in the drainage of water into deeper soils from moist areas. These wells could contain agricultural chemicals as well as bacteria.
Groundwater is one of the components of the conventional hydrologic cycle, in which water continuously flows from one source to another. contamination of the atmosphere.
Toxins from surface water or even the atmosphere may enter groundwater supplies because water cycles in a cycle.
For instance, surface water runoff into streams can contaminate groundwater.
Groundwater that has been contaminated by acid rain, a byproduct of power plants, is unsafe for irrigation and drinking.
health hazards brought on by the effects of groundwater pollution If you consume water that has been contaminated with bacteria and viruses, your risk of contracting hepatitis, cholera, giardiasis, blue baby syndrome, learning difficulties in children, issues with your nerves, kidneys, or liver, as well as troubles during pregnancy, increases.
Agriculture and soil: Groundwater contamination leads to decreased agricultural productivity and poor soil quality. Agriculture has produced significantly less as salinity has risen. For example, in Punjab and Haryana.
Economic: As a result of expensive cleanup expenses and modifications to other water sources, the burden of illness and the price of providing healthcare increased.
Environment: Toxic surface water is eventually produced by contaminated groundwater that feeds lakes, rivers, streams, ponds, and marshes.
In overpopulated and water-stressed areas, the Atal Bhujal-founded programme seeks to develop community-based sustainable groundwater management.
Protecting or restoring water resources as well as preventing, controlling, and reducing water pollution are the main objectives of the 1974 Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act. The Act outlaws the direct or indirect disposal of any dangerous or unclean material into any stream, well, sewer, or land.
2012 National Water Policy In order to increase water supply, water efficiency, and rainwater collection, the law encourages direct use of precipitation. It also advocates constructing river bodies, infrastructure, and conservation projects utilising scientific planning and community involvement.
Initiative for urban renewal under the Atal Mission (AMRUT) The Mission’s goal is to provide AMRUT communities with access to non-motorized urban transit as well as essential urban infrastructure, including water supply, sewage and septic system management, storm water drainage, green spaces, and parks.
Source à The Hindu
4 – Demonetisation:
Topic àIndian Economy
The demonetization of all 500 and 1,000 rupee notes from India’s Mahatma Gandhi Series was announced on November 8th, 2016.
It also disclosed the launch of fresh 500 and 2,000 pound banknotes to replace the demonetized currency.
Demonetization sought to accomplish three key economic goals:
Preventing drug trafficking
Fake currency and
Promoting online transactions in an effort to eliminate cash from society.
Results of the activity were as follows:
The biggest of these was dealing with dark money.
Currency that is not recorded in the financial system or for which no taxes have been paid to the government is referred to as “black money.”
More than 99 percent of the money that was invalidated later entered the financial system, according to data from the RBI.
Along with the invalidated notes, notes worth Rs. 15.31 trillion and Rs. 15.41 trillion were returned.
The available statistics show that demonetisation did not uncover any hidden funds in the system. While this is going on, black money is still being seized.
How much money has been demonetized in total?
The RBI’s annual report included 15.44 lakh crore.
86.4% of the total amount on hand at the time of the withdrawal was used. Out of the 15.44 lakh crore, only $16,000 crore was not repaid.
After demonetisation, only.0027% of false cash was “discovered”.
The financial sector has transitioned to digital:
According to a study by the RBI, cash is no longer as important to India’s economy.
An increasing number of organisations were forced to make the switch to doing business digitally during the early stages of their fight to sustain operations due to a severe financial crisis.
When the cash was reintroduced, the number of digital payments had barely grown.
The demonetization method has several flaws:
No particular statute to enforce demonetisation:
Between 1946 and 1978, demonetization was put into effect through a variety of Acts that were the subject of parliamentary debate.
It was finished in 2016 with the issuance of a straightforward notification in accordance with the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934.
A number of significant defences has been rejected by the Central Bank, including:
Although the Central Board of the RBI approved the idea, the two principal defenses—black money and counterfeit money—were vehemently denied.
To exchange their own money, there were 11 billion individuals in line.
The farmers in the area lacked power. It is now appropriate to plant.
The retail markets are shut down. Prices were lowered Retail sales fell “catastrophically.”
15 crore everyday labourers lost their jobs when firms faltered.
Some claim that the demonetisation shattered the back of the rural cash economy and disrupted supply lines.
According to reports, 1.5 million jobs have been lost
Given the fragility of the Indian economy, it is still arguable whether the note ban was a wise decision.
Data research shows that demonetization hasn’t achieved its intended outcomes, with the exception of a few, like promoting more digital transactions and formalising the financial system.
The negative effects of the activity far outweigh any positive effects:
While it is undeniable that there has been a large rise in digital payments, it is questionable whether the massive effort to find illicit currency, which was the claimed and primary goal of demonetisation, was successful.
Source à The Hindu
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The Hindu Editorial Analysis
EDITORIAL ANALYSIS à15 MAY 2023 à THE HINDU
The needs and priorities of developing countries will continue to be met by grant-based and reasonably priced international public climate finance.
Climate change adaptation and mitigation efforts receive funding on a local, national, or international level from public, private, and alternative sources.
Funding programmes for the environment worldwide:
Developed nations committed to raising $100 billion in climate funds in 2009 to aid developing nations in addressing climate change. This objective wasn’t achieved.
The UNFCCC, Kyoto Protocol, and Paris Agreement all demand that parties with greater financial resources (Developed Countries) support nations with less developed and vulnerable economies financially (Developing Countries).
The idea of “Common but Differentiated Responsibility and Respective Capabilities” is supported by this (CBDR).
At COP26, new financial commitments were made to support developing countries in achieving the global goal of combating the effects of climate change. Funding for adaptation will be aided by new regulations for global carbon trading schemes that were approved at COP26.
The wealthy nation parties to the UNFCCC unanimously set a target of USD 100 billion annually by 2020 to meet the needs of developing countries in order to carry out significant mitigation efforts and transparency in implementation at the UNFCCC COP15 in 2009. (Copenhagen).
At COP21 in Paris, the parties decided to extend the $100 billion goals until 2025. To achieve this balance between adaptation and mitigation, developed countries decided to increase their collective allocation of adaptation funding from 2019 levels by 2025 at COP26 in Glasgow (2021).
As the costs of battling and adjusting to climate change have increased, developing countries, especially India, are pleading with wealthy countries to accept a new global climate finance aim, also known as the new collective quantified goal on climate financing (NCQG).
Rich nations haven’t actually kept their word on this. Developed nations have pushed for two issues related to climate finance over the past few years:
They claim that they are on track to fulfil their 2009 commitment to give developing countries $100 billion annually in climate money.
They think that in the future, the mobilisation of private resources will be the most crucial component of climate finance. They claim that by contributing the trillions of money needed for a global switch to renewable energy, the private sector can stop climate change. They have advocated converting billions of public funding into trillions of private capital through the expansion of blended finance, boosting stand-alone private capital flows, and developing new markets.
It is obviously challenging for developing countries to develop their policies based on these optimistic stances. What action should poor countries take in response to this?
At the yearly UN Conference of Parties (COP), government delegations and environmental activists predominate; however, observers and frequent visitors at these conferences indicate a substantial rise in Indian business delegation participation in recent years.
Why/How Goals are not achieved:
Just before the ongoing 27th Conference of the Parties (COP) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) began in Egypt in 2022, the UNFCCC Standing Committee on Finance (SCF) published a report on the progress made by developed countries toward achieving the goal of mobilising $100 billion annually. The paper claims that this goal was not achieved in 2020 and that the developed countries’ earlier attempt to mobilise private finance was a total failure.
Based on OECD study, the developed countries published a “Roadmap to USD100 billion” in 2016 that included projections for climate money in 2020. According to the road map, assuming increased mobilisation rates, state finance would amount to $67 billion and private financing would cover the remaining $33 billion, putting developed countries on track to meet their goal by 2020.
With $13.1 billion in 2020 as opposed to $33 billion in the road map, private climate finance mobilisation has, however, fallen 60 percentage points short of estimates for industrialised countries, according to OECD 2020 data.
A challenge for developing countries:
Developing countries have long emphasised that a large share of climate funding should come from public sources because private financing will not meet their requirements and goals, particularly those related to adaptation.
The funding for climate change is still heavily skewed toward mitigation and goes to projects that can be financed and have clear revenue streams. Private investors are unlikely to identify financially advantageous adaption opportunities. Even when they most urgently want private money for adaptation, weak, indebted, and low-income states with poor credit ratings find it challenging to obtain it.
Climate Finance Delivery Plan (CFDP):
Due to the terrible failure to fulfil the goal, developed nations extended the timeframe for achieving the $100 billion target from 2020 to 2025. At COP26 (Glasgow) last year, developed countries developed a Climate Finance Delivery Plan (CFDP) to accomplish the goal, stating this time that the goal will be accomplished in 2023 and once again using the OECD report accounting methodology and the 2016 road map.
While the $83.3 billion total matches the low-end scenario for 2021, according to the SCF report, the mobilised private finance fell short by 6% compared to the scenario estimate for 2020 based on OECD-reported data.
Because of this, it is impossible to rely on phoney pledges of trillions of dollars in private climate finance to meet the urgent needs for climate finance of developing countries.
Many operations that are financially necessary may have little or no direct mobilisation potential. Meeting the needs of developing countries shouldn’t be sacrificed in order to mobilise private finance in order to hit the $100 billion target, as the SCF research correctly concluded.
Given the growing issues brought on by the food, energy, and extreme weather crises, grant-based and low-interest international public climate finance will continue to be essential in addressing the needs and objectives of developing countries.
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The Indian Express Editorial Analysis
EDITORIAL ANALYSIS à15 MAY 2023 à THE INDIAN EXPRESS:
GM CROPS IN INDIA:
Scenario for GM crops worldwide:
Resistance to GM food crops has always existed. Many people have launched a significant push in this direction. However, GM crops have been widely utilised since 1996.
By 2019, 190 million hectares of land will have been planted with GM crops, with soybeans and maize in the US, Brazil, and Argentina leading the way, followed by canola (rapeseed/mustard) in Canada. These crops don’t endanger the environment or the health of either people or animals (see infographics).
There is a lot of evidence to back it up. Btbrinjal is improving, even in Bangladesh. The use of GM crops has received support from more than 70 nations.
GM crop coverage in India:
In 2002, the Vajpayee administration released Bt cotton, the country’s first genetically modified crop.
Atal Bihar Vajpayee, the prime minister at the time, thought that science might change agriculture. He substituted “jai vigyan” for Lal Bahadur Shastri’s original “jai jawan, jai kisan” salutation to the military and farmers (salutation to science).
Let’s examine what transpired when the Government of India chose to use Bt cotton in 2002:
The infamous “gene revolution” was ushered in thanks to the startling surge in cotton production, which rose by 192 percent in just 12 years from 13.6 million bales (1 bale = 170 lb) in 2002-03 to 39.8 million bales in 2013-14.
While the area planted with cotton increased by 56%, with approximately 95% of that area being planted with Bt cotton, cotton production jumped by 76% from 302 kg per hectare in 2002-03 to 566 kg per hectare in 2013-14.
Farmers of cotton benefit further because their incomes have greatly grown.
India presently ranks second in the world for both cotton production (after China) and exports (after the US)
There are several places where GM crops shouldn’t be cultivated (Bt-cotton):
The success of Bt cotton can help policymakers in many ways, but there is still room for discussion and dispute. NGOs, civil society organisations, and farmer groups have occasionally voiced a variety of concerns in an effort to highlight the dangers of GM crops.
Some of these consist of:
sucking bugs are causing increasing harm to bt cotton;
a rise of secondary pests such sporoptera and mired bugs;
higher resilience to pests;
How we already consume GM foods in our diets unknowingly:
Given that GMOs have long been present in our food chain, this is incredibly ironic. India depends heavily on imports for its edible oil needs, which account for between 55 and 60 percent of its domestic use.
These three to four million tonnes per year, all of which are generated using GM technology, are mostly grown in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, the US, and other countries (in soybean and canola).
We use a lot of our own cotton seed oil, and about 95% of our cotton is now genetically modified (binola). Additionally, the cattle are fed cotton seed, which raises the milk’s fat content.
Even corn and soy, two ingredients in chicken feed, are imported. It is therefore clear that GM food has long been a component of our food supply.
While taking into account their potential benefits, GM crops must be allowed:
Therefore, by continuing to oppose GM mustard or even Btbrinjal, one is depriving farmers who want to enhance their income of their fundamental rights.
The most effective method to accomplish this is through persistent productivity growth.
Field tests comparing GM mustard to native varieties in different locales revealed a 25–28% better yield and improved disease resistance.
This could result in a significant increase in the amount of locally produced mustard oil available as well as farmer earnings.
India was predicted to lead the genetic revolution and develop into a significant export hub for other Asian and African nations. The Bt revolution may have altered agriculture similarly to how the IT revolution altered computer science.
Sadly, farmers have paid a steep price for our policy stagnation on GM technologies from 2003 to 2021, which was prompted by pressure from activists and ideologues. India is no longer leading the way. But catching up to the gene revolution is still better done late than never.
Conclusion and Next Steps:
Conflict is a sign of a functioning democracy and is necessary for the system of checks and balances. However, once the safety testing is through and the scientific organisation (GEAC) has given the go-ahead, political leadership is required to maintain a science-based approach to decision-making.
Science will underpin agriculture in the future, and those who accept and advance this now will succeed. Since innovation is the name of the game, Prime Minister Modi’s slogan, “Jai Anusandhan,” is appropriate.
However, it won’t mean much unless the government puts GM mustard, HtBt cotton, Btbrinjal, and even GM soy and corn into use.
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