14thFebruary,2022 ; Daily Current Affairs

Daily Current Affairs   Date : 14thFebruary,2022

 (30+ Questions hit in Prelims 2021 from this series)

Covers 4 Most relevant Sources

  • The Hindu
  • Indian Express
  • PIB
  • Mint


  • Agricultural Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) (PIB)
  • CRUSHED Report 2021 (TH, pg 6)
  • MCC Development Compact (TH, pg 11)
  • 54th flight of the PSLV and EOS-04, INSPIREsat-1 and INS-2TD (IE)
  • What is Doxxing? (TH, pg 15)
  • What is ModifiedElephant? (IE)
  • Modernisation of State Police Forces (MPF Scheme) (TH, pg 8)
  • Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002 (TH, pg 8)
  • Hippocratic Oath and Charak (IE)


  1. Agricultural Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) (PIB)

  • Context:Agricultural Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) celebrated its 36th Foundation Day (13th February).
Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA)
  • The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) is a statutory bodyestablished under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to promote agricultural and processed food products exports.
  • The Authority replaced the Processed Food Export Promotion Council (PFEPC).
Some of the important Functions are:
  • In accordance with the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority Act, 1985, (2 of 1986) the following functions have been assigned to the Authority.
  • Development of industries relating to the scheduled products for export by way of providing financial assistance or otherwise;
  • Registration of persons as exporters of the scheduled products on payment of such fees as may be prescribed;
  • Fixing of standards and specifications for the scheduled products for the purpose of exports;
  • Carrying out inspection of meat and meat products in slaughter houses, processing plants, storage premises etc.;
  • Improving of packaging and marketing of the Scheduled products.
  • In addition to this, APEDA has been entrusted with the responsibility to monitor import of sugar.

Do you know?

  • APEDA is working with the state governments for ensuring traceability and market linkages for farmers for promoting exports.
  • APEDA’s thrust has been on ensuring digitalization of land records and formalization of tenancy for the farmers, which helps in boosting exports.
  • For promoting use of hybrid technology, APEDA has integrated a Blockchain solution into its GrapeNet traceability platform.
  • The GrapeNet is a web-based certification and traceability software system for monitoring fresh grapes exported from India to the European Union.
  • After the success of traceability implementation in the grapes sector, the same was replicated for other products such as peanut (Peanut.net); Organic products (Tracenet) and meat products (Meat.net).
  • The Blockchain solution, called APEDA Trust Chain, helps track all the details of the export consignment, right down to the location of the vineyards.
  • Even though India is the biggest producer of main agricultural crops, fruits and vegetables, the country’s contribution to the agri-exports in the global market is not significant due to lack of requisite infrastructure at farm gate, post production and logistics complied with other aspects such as awareness about the good agricultural practices, good manufacturing practices, hygienically producing and other latest international standards in the area of quality and packaging, etc, have been the key hindrances in harnessing export potential of the country.


  1. CRUSHED Report 2021 (TH, pg 6)

  • Context: The CRUSHED Report 2021 released by Safe in India (SII)portrays a dismal picture concerning occupational safety and health in the auto sector.
  • Occupational safety and health (OSH) has not received due attention from law-makers and even trade unions in India, even though OSH is an existential human and labour right.
  • Statistics concerning industrial accidents in India are produced by the Labour Bureau.
  • It compiles and publishes data on industrial injuries relating only to a few sectors, viz. factories, mines, railways, docks and ports. But the data suffer from several shortcomings.
  • It is inexplicable why the Labour Bureau has not considered expanding the scope of statistics on injuries by adding sectors such as plantations, construction, the service sector, etc.
  • Eventhe data it produces is not representative of the situation in India as several major States default in the provision of data to the Labour Bureau.
  • Given the above statistical facts, two major issues are pertinent to legal and labour policy aspects.
  • First, mindless liberalisation of the inspection system as has been effected during the last 20 years will not promote sound labour market governance.
  • Second, simplifying the annual returns and self-certification systems weakens the already poorly placed labour statistical system regarding all variables — especially industrial injuries — thanks to low reporting by firms to State labour departments and the latter to the Labour Bureau.
  • India has ratified International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions, the Labour Inspection Convention, 1947 (C081) and Labour Statistics Convention, 1985 (C160); and thus, these defects violate the conventions.
  • So, against these tenets, the labour codes, especially the OSH Code, the inspection and the labour statistical systems should be reviewed as the Government is in the process of framing the Vision@2047 document for the Labour Ministry.


  1. MCC Development Compact (TH, pg 11)

  • Context: Nepal Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba’s government is facing a major challenge this month as the Biden administration has set a deadline for the ratification of the U.S. Millenium Challenge Corporation (MCC) development compact by February 28, 2022.
  • MCC’s Nepal Compact is designed to improve the availability of electricity and increase road maintenance to advance connectivity, drive growth, and lay a strong foundation for new investors.
MCC Development Compact
  • Compacts are five-year agreements between MCC and an eligible country to fund specific programs targeted at reducing poverty and stimulating economic growth.
  • MCC’s unique model for the development of compact programs include the principle of country ownership, a belief that assistance is most effective when built on a partnership (or “compact”) in which recipient countries assume greater responsibility for their own economic development.
Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC)
  • It is an innovative and independent U.S. foreign assistance agency that is helping lead the fight against global poverty.
  • Created by the U.S. Congress in January 2004, it aims to deliver smart U.S. foreign assistance by focusing on good policies, country ownership, and results.
  • MCC provides time-limited grants promoting economic growth, reducing poverty, and strengthening institutions.
  • These investments not only support stability and prosperity in partner countries but also enhances American interests.
  • MCC grants are designed to complement other U.S. and international development programs, as well as create an enabling environment for private sector investment.




  1. 54th flight of the PSLV and EOS-04, INSPIREsat-1 and INS-2TD (IE)

  • Context:EOS-04 and two other small satellites —INSPIREsat-1 and INS-2TD — rode on the heaviest version of the PSLV rocket in the early hours from the Sriharikota launch range.
  • This launch would be the 54th flight of the PSLV rocket, and the 23rd of its most powerful XL-version that has six strap-on boosters.
What is the EOS-04 all about?
  • EOS-04 is the fourth in a series of earth observation satellites that are being launched under a new generic name.
  • Like EOS-01, EOS-04, which will be placed in a sun synchronous polar orbit of 529 km, is a radar-imaging satellite.
  • It would replace the RISAT-1 which was launched in 2012 but has been non-functional for the last few years.
  • RISATs use synthetic aperture radars to produce high-resolution images of the land.
  • One big advantage that radar imaging has over optical instruments is that it is unaffected by weather, cloud or fog, or the lack of sunlight.
  • It can produce high-quality images in all conditions and at all times, making it suitable for surveillance.
  • EOS-04 was designed to provide high-quality images for applications such as agriculture, forestry and plantations, flood mapping, soil moisture and hydrology.
  • It will complement the data from Resourcesat, Cartosat and RISAT-2B series of satellites that are already in orbit.
What other satellites are being launched?
  • INSPIREsat-1 is a student satellite developed by the Thiruvananthapuram-based Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology in collaboration with the University of Colorado in the United States where it was assembled and tested.
  • Students from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and National Central University of Taiwan have also contributed.
  • This satellite will study the dynamics of the upper atmosphere and carries an X-ray spectrometer for studying solar flares.
  • The other co-passenger, INS-2TD, is a technology demonstrator for the first India-Bhutan joint satellite that is scheduled to be launched next month.
  • The two countries had signed a space agreement last year, and its first outcome would be the launch of BhutanSat, or INS-2B, on a PSLV rocket in March.
  • The INS-2TD has a thermal imaging camera meant for earth observation purposes, like assessment of land and water surface temperature, and identification of forest and tree cover.


  1. What is Doxxing? (TH, pg 15)

  • Context: Meta’s oversight board has suggested Facebook and Instagram to make strict doxxing rules. It urged Meta to consider doxxing as an offence which should prompt temporary account suspension.
  • Doxxing is publishing and analysing others’ personal information on the internet with a malicious intent that can reveal the person’s real identity making them victims of harassments and cyber attacks.
  • Doxxing is used to shame or punish people who would rather stay anonymous, because of their controversial beliefs or other types of non-mainstream activity.
  • It reckons that most of us are careless with the information we share on the Internet, that cybercriminals can use to find out our real identity and harass us.


  1. What is ModifiedElephant? (IE)
  • Context:American cybersecurity firm SentinelOne has released a report on ModifiedElephant—a hacking group that allegedly planted incriminating evidence on the personal devices of Indian journalists, human rights activists, human rights defenders, academics and lawyers.
How does ModifiedElephant deploy malware to its targets?
  • According to the report, ModifiedElephant operators have been infecting their targets using spearphishing emails with malicious file attachments over the last decade, with their techniques getting more sophisticated over time.
  • Spearphishing refers to the practice of sending emails to targets that look like they are coming from a trusted source to either reveal important information or install different kinds of malware on their computer systems.
  • ModifiedElephant typically weaponises malicious Microsoft Office files to deliver malware to their targets.
  • NetWire and DarkComet, two publicly-available remote access trojans (RATs), were the primary malware families deployed by ModifiedElephant, according to SentinelOne.


  1. Modernisation of State Police Forces (MPF Scheme) (TH, pg 8)

  • Context: The Union government has approved the continuation of a police modernisation scheme for five years up to 2025-26.
  • The Union Home Ministry said the scheme included security-related expenditure in J&K, north-eastern States and Maoist-affected areas, for raising new battalions, developing high-tech forensic laboratories and other investigation tools.
  • Under the five-year plan, provision has been made for internal security, law and order, adoption of modern technology by police, assisting states for narcotics control and strengthening the criminal justice system by developing a robust forensic set-up in the country.
  • ‘Police’ and ‘law and order’ fall under the category of subjects within the domain of the State as per the List II of the 7th Schedule in the Constitution of India.
  • The principal responsibility for managing these subjects lies with the State Governments.
  • However, the States have not been able to fully modernize and equip their police forces up to the desired level due to financial constraints.
  • It is in this context that the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has been supplementing the efforts and resources of the States, from time to time, by implementing the Scheme for Modernisation of State Police Forces (MPF Scheme) since 1969-70.
  • The objective of the scheme is to gradually reduce the dependence of the State Governments on the Army and the Central Armed Police Forces to control internal security and law and order situations by equipping the State Police Forces adequately and strengthening their training infrastructure.
  • The focus is to strengthen police infrastructure at cutting edge level by construction of secure police stations,
  • training centres,
  • police housing (residential),
  • equipping the police stations with the required mobility,
  • modern weaponry, communication equipment and forensic set-up.
Funding Pattern
  • Under the Scheme, the States are grouped into two categories, namely Category ‘A’ and Category ‘B’ for the purpose of funding.
  • Category ‘A’ States, namely, J&K and 8 North Eastern States including Sikkim will be eligible to receive financial assistance on 90:10 Centre: State sharing basis.
  • The remaining States will be in Category ‘B’ and will be eligible for financial assistance on 60:40 Centre: State sharing basis.


  1. Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002 (TH, pg 8)

  • Context: A three-judge Bench in Supreme Court is holding back-to-back hearings on petitions filed by people from all walks of life and across the country complaining of the alleged subversion of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) by the government and the Enforcement Directorate (ED).
Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002
  • It is a Criminal Law which criminalises money laundering, with the officers empowered to conduct investigations to trace assets derived out of the proceeds of crime.
  • It has provisions to provisionally attach/ confiscate these assets.
  • It provides powers to arrest and prosecute the offenders found to be involved in Money Laundering.
  • All PMLA offences will be cognisable and non-bailable. Therefore, ED officers are empowered to arrest an accused without warrant, subject to certain conditions.
What is the legal authority to prosecute money laundering at national level?
  • The Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) together with the rules and regulations prescribed by regulators such as the Reserve Bank of India, the Securities and Exchange Board of India and Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India, sets out the broad framework for the prosecution of money laundering in India.
  • The Directorate of Enforcement (ED) is empowered by the Union Government to investigate and prosecute money laundering.
  • Directorate of Enforcement is a specialized financial investigation agency under the Department of Revenue, Ministry of Finance.
  • ED enforces the following laws: – 
  • Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 (FEMA) – A Civil Law.
  • Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) – A Criminal Law.
  • PMLA also seeks to prevent money laundering by mandating record-keeping and reporting obligations imposed on banks, financial institutions and intermediaries.
What are proceeds of crime?
  • Any property derived or obtained directly or indirectly by any person:
  • as a result of criminal activity;
  • relating to a ‘scheduled offence’; or
  • Scheduled offences range from those relating to corporate fraud, terrorism, illegal trade of arms, wildlife, narcotics to bribery of public officials.
  • A wilful attempt to evade tax under section 51 of the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act 2015 are also scheduled offences.
Is there any extra-territorial jurisdiction for the crime of money laundering? or Is money laundering of the proceeds of foreign crimes punishable?
  • PMLA confers extra-territorial jurisdiction to the government to prosecute the offence of money laundering for ‘offences of cross-border implications.’
  • PMLA allows for attachment and confiscation of equivalent assets in Indiaor overseas whenever the asset constituting the proceeds of crime is located abroad and cannot be forfeited.
  • The offences of money laundering under the PMLA cannot be compounded.
To what extent have anti- money laundering requirements been applied to the cryptocurrency industry?
  • RBI’s circular has banned all entities regulated by RBI which include banks, financial institutions, non-banking financial institutions, payment system providers, etc. from dealing in, or facilitating any dealings in, cryptocurrencies.
How money is laundered in India?
  • Money Laundering refers to the conversion of money which has been illegally obtained, in such a way that it appears to have originated from a legitimate source.
  • The term “money laundering” is said to have originated from the mafia ownership of Laundromats in the United States.
  • The mafia earned huge amounts from extortion, gambling etc. and showed legitimate source (such as laundomats) for these monies.
  • In India, money laundering is popularly known as Hawala transactions.
  • Hawala is an alternative or parallel remittance system. “Hawala” is an Arabic word meaning the transfer of money or information between two persons using a third person.
  • The system dates to the Arabic traders as a means of avoiding robbery. It predates western banking by several centuries.
  • The Hawala Mechanism facilitated the conversion of money from black into white.
  • Black money refers to funds earned, on which income and other taxes have not been paid. Black money is earned through illegally traded goods or services.
  • While the money earned through legal means on which due taxes have been paid is referred to as white money.
  • Figure 1 lays down the process followed by the Hawala operators.

Do you know?

  • Out of 141 countries, India has been ranked 70th in 2020 (Data not available for India in 2021) in the Anti Money Laundering (AML) Basel Index 2020.
  • Published by the Basel Institute on Governance since 2012, it provides risk scores based on data from 17 publicly available sources such as the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), Transparency International, the World Bank and the World Economic Forum.
  • AML Basel index is country risk ranking which focuses on money laundering/terrorist financing risk.
  • Higher the rank – It shows the country is very vulnerable to money laundering activities and is a high-risk zone.
Foreign Exchange Management Act,1999 (FEMA)
  • It is a Civil Law, with officers empowered to conduct investigations into suspected contraventions of the Foreign Exchange Laws and Regulations.
  • It can impose only financial penalties on those adjudged to have contravened the law.


  1. Hippocratic Oath and Charak (IE)

  • Context: The National Medical Commission has suggested to medical colleges that the traditional Hippocratic Oath should be replaced by a “Charak Shapath”.
  • ‘Charak Shapath’ is a pledge mentioned in the Charaka Samhita, one of the two foundational Sanskrit texts of ancient Indian medicine.
Hippocrates and Hippocratic Oath
  • The Hippocratic Oath is attributed to Hippocrates – a Greek physician of the classical period, broadly corresponding to the period from the death of the Buddha (486 BC) to the rise of the Mauryas (321 BC) in India.
  • Hippocrates is appropriated as father of Modern Medicine.
  • Basically, the Hippocratic Oath is a charter of ethical principles that physicians over the ages have sworn to uphold in the practice of their profession.
Charaka and Charak Samhita
  • The Charak Samhita – compiled by Charak is a medical treatise and collection of commentaries and discussions on medical practices that is dated to the 1st-2nd centuries AD.
  • Charaka Samhita is the oldest and the most authentic treatise on Ayurveda.
  • Apart from giving information on medical conditions and their treatment; it also gives valuable information on geographical, social, and economic conditions of India.
  • Charaka was a physician at the court of Emperor Kanishka in 1st century AD and was hailed as the “king of physicians”.
  • The presently available Charaka Samhita mentions Punarvasu Atreya, Charaka, and Dridhabala.
  • Punarvasu Atreya is believed to have preached Ayurveda to his student Agnivesha, who composed the text which Dridhabala completed and Charaka compiled.
  • Charak Samhita along with the Susruta (c. 4th century AD), which is about surgery, are considered the foundational text of ancient Indian medicine, which was an evolved system of understanding and treating disease that resembled that of Hippocrates and Galen (2nd century AD), and was in some ways ahead of the Greeks.
  • Interest in physiology in India was also enriched by the growth and spread of Buddhism to new lands, the arrival of the first Christian missionaries, and the contact with Hellenic practitioners of medicine.
  • In theory and practice, ayurvedic medicine today remains broadly unchanged from these ancient Indian principles.
Ayurveda- An ancient Indian system of medicine
  • At the heart of ancient Indian medicine is the doctrine of the three ‘doshas’ (humours).
  • Combining physical, psychological, and spiritual health, Ayurveda focuses on whole-body healing and states that a person’s dosha, a type of bodily humor, determines their personality and health.
  • A combination of each element results in three humors, or doshas, known as ‘vata’, ‘kapha’, and ‘pitta’. These three doshas are believed to be responsible for a person’s physiological, mental, and emotional health.
  • Ayurvedic medicine is based on the idea that the world is made up of five elements — aakash (space), jala (water), prithvi (earth), teja (fire), and vayu (air).
  • It is believed in Ayurveda that a balance of the four vital fluids, wind, bile/ gall, mucus/ phlegm and blood is essential for good health

Do you know?

  • In Charak Samhita, food is seen as the key to good health: it is why the body exists — and as bad food causes sickness, good food heals.
  • According to AL Basham – Surgery reached great heights in ancient India.
  • The caesarian section was known, bone-setting was highly evolved, and plastic surgery was “developed far beyond anything known elsewhere at the time”.

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