Daily Current Affairs Date :11thMarch,2022
(30+ Questions hit in Prelims 2021 from this series)
Covers 4 Most relevant Sources
- The Hindu
- Indian Express
- Gig and Platform Workers (PIB)
- The National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development (NaBFID) (IE)
- PM MITRA Parks (PIB)
- Captive Employment Policy (PIB)
- Colombo Security Conclave (CSC) (TH, pg 12)
- Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC) (TH, 12)
- All About Craters (TH, pg 15)
Gig and Platform Workers (PIB)
- Context:Ministry of Labour and Employment organized an International Webinar on “New Forms of Employment with reference to Gig and Platform Working in the BRICS and Global South.”
- The Code on Social Security 2020is the first occasion that gig and platform workers have been defined and incorporated within the ambit of labour laws.
- The term gig worker means someone who takes on hourly or part-time jobs in everything from catering events to software development. The work is usually temporary and completed during a specified time under a non-standard work arrangement.
- The gig economy concept is very prominent concept in the west amongst the youth. The concept allows students to take up jobs in the early age and get exposure in their respective fields.
- The term platform worker in general means a worker working for an organization which provides specific services using online platform directly to individuals or organizations. For example: Uber, Ola, Zomato etc.
The National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development (NaBFID) (IE)
- Context: The Reserve Bank said NaBFID will be regulated and supervised as an All India Financial Institution by it under the RBI Act, 1934.
- NaBFID is a statutory body under the National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development (NaBFID) Act, 2021.
- It has been set up as a Development Financial Institution (DFI) to support the development of long-term infrastructure financing in India.
- It is principal development financial institution (DFIs) for infrastructure financing.
- It shall be the fifth AIFI after Export – Import Bank of India (Exim Bank), National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), National Housing Bank (NHB) and Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) to be regulated by the RBI under the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934.
What are Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) Or Development Banks?
- Development banks are financial institutions that provide long-term credit for capital-intensive investments spread over a long period and yielding low rates of return, such as urban infrastructure, mining and heavy industry, and irrigation systems.
- DIs are set up for providing long-term finance where the risks involved are beyond the acceptable limits of commercial banks and other ordinary financial institutions.
- Such banks often lend at low and stable rates of interest to promote long-term investments with considerable social benefits.
- To lend for long term, development banks require correspondingly long-term sources of finance, usually obtained by issuing long-dated securities in capital market, subscribed by long-term savings institutions such as pension and life insurance funds and post office deposits.
- Considering the social benefits of such investments, and uncertainties associated with them, development banks are often supported by governments or international institutions.
Do you know?
- All India Financial Institutions (AIFIs), Non- Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) and Primary Dealers (PDs) form three important segments of the Non-Banking Financial Institutions (NBFIs) sector in India that are regulated and supervised by the Reserve Bank.
- AIFIs constitute institutional mechanism entrusted with providing sector-specific long-term financing.
- NBFCs comprising mostly private sector institutions, provide a variety of financial services including equipment leasing, hire purchase, loans, and investments.
- Primary dealers (PDs) play a crucial role in fostering both the primary and secondary government securities markets.
- AIFIs comprise of all the Development Financial Institutions (DFIs).
PM MITRA Parks (PIB)
- Context:The Ministry of Textiles has issued a notification for setting up of 7 PM MITRA Parks as announced in Union Budget for 2021-22.
- PM MITRA Parks are envisaged to help India in achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 9 (Build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialization and foster innovation).
- The scheme is to develop integrated large scale and modern industrial infrastructure facility for entire value-chain of the textile industry.
- It will reduce logistics costs and improve competitiveness of Indian Textiles.
- These parks are envisaged to be located at sites which have inherent strength for Textile Industry to flourish and have necessary linkages to succeed.
- The 7 PM Mega Integrated Textile Region and Apparel (PM MITRA) Parks will be setup at Greenfield / Brownfield sites located in different willing States.
- PM MITRA Park will be developed by a Special Purpose Vehicle which will be owned by State Government and Government of India in a Public Private Partnership (PPP) Mode.
Captive Employment Policy (PIB)
- Context:Union Rural Development Secretary chaired a webinar promoting the ‘Captive Employer’ initiative under the DeenDayal Upadhyaya Grameen Kaushalya Yojana (DDU-GKY).
- Captive Placement:Captive Placement may be defined as the employment provided to the skilled candidates post training in the industry where they are trained.
- Captive Employer:Any Employer or Industry who provides employment to candidates in their own organization or one of its subsidiaries and have suitable in-house training facilities.
DeenDayal Upadhyaya Grameen Kaushalya Yojana (DDU-GKY)
- It is the demand-driven placement-linked skill training initiative of the Ministry of Rural Development, (MoRD), uniquely aimed at rural poor youth between 15 and 35 years of age, with the purpose to create income diversity in poor families and help rural youth realize their career aspirations.
- The program is currently being implemented in 27 States and 4 UTs.
- DDU-GKY subsidizes 100% cost of skill training of candidates at its approved training centres implemented by its PIAs in sanctioned projects.
- Under DDU-GKY,the training partners are mandated to place atleast 75% of the successful candidates in jobs, offering a minimum salary (CTC) of Rs. 6000 per month.
Colombo Security Conclave (CSC) (TH, pg 12)
- Context:Mauritius has joined theColombo Security Conclave.
- India, Maldives, and Sri Lanka began a National Security Advisor (NSA)-level trilateral meeting on maritime security cooperation in 2011.
- Following a halt from 2014-2019, the trilateral meeting was resumed in 2020, when the decision was taken to establish the Colombo Security Conclave (CSC).
- A secretariat was set up at the Sri Lankan Navy (SLN) Headquarters in Colombo in March 2021.
- Members (Sri Lanka, Maldives, India, Mauritius) and Observer States (Seychelles, and Bangladesh) had agreed on six pillars of cooperation including:
- Maritime Safety and Security,
- Terrorism and Radicalization,
- Trafficking and Organized Crime,
- Cyber Security and Protection of Critical Infrastructure,
- Humanitarian Assistance, and
- Disaster relief.
- Maiden ‘Colombo Security Conclave (CSC) Focused Operation’ was conducted between the Indian Navy (IN), the Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF), and the Sri Lankan Navy (SLN) in November 2021 in the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ) of the three countries in Southern Arabian Sea.
- The ‘Focused Operation’ conducted between the navies of the three countries in the last week of November was the first operational cooperation under the CSC.
- It is noteworthy to mention here that the Coastguards of the three countries (Sri Lanka, Maldives, India) have been participating in the biennial Exercise Dosti regularly since 2012.
- Though Exercise Dosti enhances interoperability between the three countries, it does not directly come under the CSC.
- By inaugurating the ‘Focused Operation’, and setting up the 24/7 secretariat, the CSC has obtained an operational tooth, which other maritime security cooperation grouping in the region such as Indian Ocean RIM Association (IORA) lacks.
Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC) (TH, 12)
- Context:The United States denied renewed Russian accusations that Washington was operating biowarfare labs in Ukraine, and said Moscow may be laying the groundwork to use a chemical or biological weapon.
- The Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC) is a legally binding treaty that bans biological weapons and was the first multilateral treaty categorically banning a class of weapon.
- The treaty prohibits the development, stockpile, production, or transfer of biological agents and toxins of “types and quantities” that have no justification for protective or peaceful use.
- Furthermore, the treaty bans the development of weapons, equipment, or delivery systems to disseminate such agents or toxins.
- It prohibits the transfer of or assistance with acquiring biological weapons or their delivery systems.
- Should a state possess any agent, toxin, or delivery system for them, they have to destroy their stockpiles, or divert them for peaceful use.
- There is no formal verification regime to monitor compliance.
- The convention stipulates that states shall cooperate bilaterally or multilaterally to solve compliance issues.
- States may also submit complaints to the UNSC should they believe another state is violating the treaty.
- However, there is no implementation body of the BTWC, allowing for blatant violations as seen in the past.
- There is a review conference every five years to review the convention’s implementation, and establish confidence-building measures.
- Although the BTWC does not explicitly prohibit “use” of biological weapons, the Final Declaration of the 1996 Treaty Review Conference reaffirmed that, although “use” is not explicitly prohibited under Article I of the BTWC, it is still considered to be a violation of the convention.
- Membership: 183 state parties to the Treaty, including Palestine and India.
- 4 Signatories: Egypt, Haiti, Somalia, and Syria
- 10 have neither signed nor ratified: Chad, Comoros, Dijibouti, Eritrea, Israel, Kiribati, Micronesia, Namibia, South Sudan, and Tuvalu
What areBiological Weapons?
- Biological weapons are microorganisms like virus, bacteria, fungi, or other toxins that are produced and released deliberately to cause disease and death in humans, animals or plants.
- Biological agents, like anthrax, botulinum toxin and plague can pose a difficult public health challenge causing large numbers of deaths in a short amount of time while being difficult to contain.
- Bioterrorism attacks could also result in an epidemic, for example if Ebola or Lassa viruses were used as the biological agents.
- Biological weapons are a subset of a larger class of weapons referred to as weapons of mass destruction, which also includes chemical, nuclear and radiological weapons.
All About Craters (TH, pg 15)
- Context: A leftover piece from China’s lunar missionChang’e 5-T1 spacecraft has reportedly hit the surface of the moon, creating a new crater that may be around 65 feet wide.
- This is the first recorded unintentional case of space junk hitting the moon.
- A crater is a bowl-shaped depression produced by the impact of a meteorite, space object, volcanic activity, or an explosion.
- Craters are of two types: Impact Crater and Volcanic Crater.
- Craters produced by the collision of a meteorite with the Earth (or another planet or moon) are called impact craters.
- When a meteor (bits of rock and ice in Space) reaches the Earth, it is called a meteorite.
- One of the best-known craters on Earth is Meteor Crater, near Winslow, Arizona.
- The Chicxulub Crater, on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, was most likely created by a comet or asteroid that hit Earth about 65 million years ago.
- Impact craters are found on most of the solar system’s rocky planets and moons.
- The so-called “gas giants” of the solar system—Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune—don’t have craters.
- These planets are made up almost entirely of gases, so there is no hard surface for a meteor to impact. Meteors entering the atmosphere of a gas giant simply break up.
- Impact Cratering is a rare occurrence in the solar system today.
- Planets, moons, comets, and other celestial bodies have fairly stable orbits that do not interact with each other.
- Meteors do collide with planets—including Earth—every day.
- Most meteors burn up in the atmosphere (This usually occurs within the mesosphere, typically at a height of about 80km) as “shooting stars” before ever colliding with the surface of the Earth.
Is the crater on the moon permanent?
- Both the earth and the moon have been hit by multiple objects like asteroids throughout their existence.
- Craters on the moon are of a more permanent nature than those on earth.
- This is because of absence of processes like erosion, tectonics, and volcanism on the Moon.
- An absence of atmosphere means there is no wind system and no weather on the moon, and hence no cause for erosion of existing craters.
- Absence of tectonic movements prevents the moon’s surface from forming new rocks, or causing a shift in the existing surface patterns, unlike that on earth.
- Absence of volcanism makes it impossible for craters to be covered.
- According to NASA, these three processes keep the surface of the earth crater-free and remove traces of collisions that have happened in the pas
- A volcanic crater usually lies directly above the vent from which volcanic material is ejected.
- Volcanoes may have one or several summit craters, such as Mount Fuji in Japan has only one whereas Mount Etna, in Italy, has four.
- Some craters persist long after eruptions have ceased, but they will eventually be degraded and removed by erosion.
- Craters that form on the sides of volcanoes are called flank craters.
- Eruptions from flank craters can be much more dangerous than eruptions from summit craters.
Crater Vs Caldera
- A crater is not the same thing as a caldera. Calderas are formed by the inward collapse of a volcano’s magma chamber.
- Craters are usually much smaller features than calderas, and calderas are sometimes considered giant craters.
- Lake Toba in Sumatra, the largest volcanic structure on Earth, is an example of an enormous caldera that has filled with water over time.
What is a Maar?
- Volcanoes can also create craters when the magma comes into contact with water.
- Magma flowing or bubbling beneath a volcano can sometimes interact with groundwater in the area.
- When this happens, a small explosion occurs and a crater forms around the explosion. This type of volcanic crater is called a maar.
- Often, a maar will fill with water, it becomes a shallow crater lake. The Seward Peninsula, in the U.S. state of Alaska, is filled with maars that form as magma encounters not groundwater.
Do you know?
- NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and ISRO’s Chandrayaan-2 orbiter are two active lunar missions that are capable of observing the crater and picturing it.
- Currently, the earth has less than 200 known craters while the moon has thousands.
- For more details on Space Debris, refer the 22 Jan 2022 file.