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Daily Current Affairs for UPSC IAS: 25th July 2022

Today Current Affairs: 25th July 2022 for UPSC IAS exams, State PSC exams, SSC CGL, State SSC, RRB, Railways, Banking Exam & IBPS, etc


National Legal Services Authority:

The Minister of Law and Justice informed the details of funds allocated by NALSA (National Legal Services Authority) to Legal Services Authorities to organise Legal Aid Programmes in India.

  • The NALSA was founded in 1995 under the Legal Services Authorities Act of 1987 to monitor and review the effectiveness of legal aid programs and to develop rules and principles for providing legal services under the Act.
  • It also distributes funding and grants to state legal services authorities and non-profit organisations to help them execute legal aid systems and initiatives.
  • Article 39A of the Constitution of India provides that State shall secure that the operation of the legal system promotes justice on a basis of equal opportunity, and shall in particular, provide free legal aid, by suitable legislation or schemes or in any other way, to ensure that opportunities for securing justice are not denied to any citizen by reason of economic or other disability.
  • Articles 14 and 22(1) also make it obligatory for the State to ensure equality before law and a legal system which promotes justice on a basis of equal opportunity to all.

Green Protection To Aravalli:

The Supreme Court of India extended Green Protection to forest land in Aravalli ranges.

  • The court’s ruling will mean around 30,000 hectares across the Aravallis and Shivaliks in Haryana will be considered forest land.
  • The Supreme Court held that all land covered by the special orders issued under Section 4 of the Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA) in Haryana will be treated as forests and be entitled to protection under the 1980 Forest Conservation Act.
  • Such land covered under Section 4 can see no commercial activity or non-forest use without the consent of the central government.
  • It also stated that land covered by the special orders issued under Section 4 of PLPA have all the trappings of forest lands within the meaning of Section 2 of the Forest Act.
  • The court directed the state government to clear any non-forest activity from such land in three months and report compliance.
  • The bench considered a September 2018 judgment which held all land under PLPA could be treated as forest.
  • The recent verdict clarified that the previous judgment failed to closely examine the scheme of Section 4 of PLPA and its legal effect in relation to Section 2 of the Forest Act.

Aravalli Range:

  • They stretch for a distance of about 720 km from Himmatnagar in Gujarat to Delhi, spanning Haryana and Rajasthan.
  • The Aravallis date back to millions of years when a pre-Indian subcontinent collided with the mainland Eurasian Plate.
  • Carbon dating has shown that copper and other metals mined in the ranges date back to at least the 5th century BC.
  • The Aravallis of Northwestern India, one of the oldest fold mountains of the world, now form residual mountains with an elevation of 300m to 900m.
  • Guru Shikhar Peak on Mount Abu is the highest peak in the Aravalli Range (1,722 m).
  • It has been formed primarily of folded crust, when two convergent plates move towards each other by the process called orogenic movement.
  • The mountains are divided into two main ranges – the Sambhar Sirohi Range and the Sambhar Khetri Range in Rajasthan, where their extension is about 560 km.
  • The hidden limb of the Aravallis that extends from Delhi to Haridwar creates a divide between the drainage of rivers of the Ganga and the Indus.

Anti-Maritime Piracy Bill 2019:

Government has come up with Anti-Maritime Piracy Bill 2019 will bring the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea into domestic law and enable Indian authorities to take action against piracy on the high seas.

  • A pirate is a seaman, or robber who attacks, seizes or destroys any ship on the high seas and sometimes even harbours at the shore.
  • India currently does not have legislation on matters of piracy on the high seas.
  • India ratified the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea in 1995 but was yet to enact it through the bill.

Need for the bill:

  • IPC is not valid for foreigners in international waters: Previously, pirates were prosecuted under the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC).
  • However, India’s sovereignty is delimited by the outer boundary of its territorial waters— 12 nautical miles from the coast.
  • Acts of piracy committed by a foreigner outside India’s territorial waters cannot be an offence under the IPC, and those accused in piracy cases have been acquitted due to the lack of jurisdiction.
  • Incidence of Piracy: the Gulf of Aden has been one of the deadliest areas in the oceans due to a large number of piracy incidents.
  • Due to an increased naval presence in the Gulf of Aden, it has been observed that piracy operations are shifting towards the east and south, which increases their proximity to India’s west coast.

Provisions in the Bill:

  • Piracy is defined as an act of violence or detention by the crew or passengers of a private vessel or private aircraft on high seas, directed against another vessel or aircraft and/or people or property on board.
  • Extra-territorial Jurisdictions: The Bill will apply to the sea beyond the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), that is, beyond 200 nautical miles from India’s coastline.
  • However, it is unclear if it will apply to the EEZ that extends between 12 and 200 nautical miles from the coast of India.

Initiatives To Boost Electric Mobility:

NITI Aayog launched two significant initiatives —

  • E-AMRIT (Accelerated e-Mobility Revolution for India’s Transportation) mobile application to raise awareness of electric mobility
  • Report on Advanced Chemistry Cell Battery Reuse and Recycling Market in India (supported by UK’s green growth fund technical cooperation)
  • Glasgow Breakthroughs ( launched at the COP26 climate summit): a series of actions across five key economic sectors that together represent more than 50% of global emissions.
  • India is among 42 leaders to back and sign up for the UK’s Glasgow Breakthroughs.
  • India is also a co-convener of the Glasgow Breakthrough on Road Transport, together with the UK and the US.
  • It aims to make ZEVs (Zero Emission Vehicle systems) affordable, accessible and sustainable in all regions by 2030.
  • India is the fifth largest and fastest growing vehicle market in the world, providing massive potential for electric vehicle uptake.

Flag Code Of India:

The government has amended the Flag Code of India to allow the tricolour to be displayed in the open and on individual houses or buildings through day and night.

  • The provision earlier allowed the flag, when displayed in the open, to be flown from sunrise to sunset as far as possible.
  • Now, a member of the public, a private organisation or an educational institution is allowed to hoist the flag on all days and occasions, ceremonial or otherwise, consistent with dignity and honour of the national flag.
  • The move comes ahead of 75th anniversary of Indian Independence.
  • The Flag Code of India was earlier amended on December 30, 2021, allowing the use of polyester, apart from cotton, wool, silk and khadi for making hand-spun, hand-woven and machine-made flags.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called upon people to hoist the Tricolour or display it in their homes between 13th and 15th August. Mr Modi said, this Har Ghar Tiranga movement will deepen our connect with the national flag as the nation is marking Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav this year.

Bal Raksha Mobile App:

Union Minister of Ayush Shri Sarbananda Sonowal inaugurated Vaccination Centre for children at the All India Institute of Ayurveda (AIIA).

  • He also launched the Bal Raksha mobile app, which is aimed at creating awareness of paediatric preventive healthcare through Ayurveda intervention amongst parents.
  • The app will also collect feedback from parents regarding the impact of the kit on their children’s health and immunity.
  • The All India Institute of Ayurveda, an autonomous organisation under Ministry of Ayush, aims at bringing synergy between the traditional wisdom of Ayurveda and modern tools and technology.

Strengthening Pharmaceuticals Industry:

The Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilisers has launched Schemes for ‘Strengthening Pharmaceuticals Industry’ (SPI) keeping in view the strategic role of MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises).

  • The Scheme provides for credit linked capital and interest subsidy for Technology Upgradation of MSME units in pharmaceutical sector, as well as support of up to Rs 20 crore each for common facilities including Research centre, testing labs and ETPs (Effluent Treatment Plant) in Pharma Clusters.
  • The MSME unit will have the option to choose from either Capital subsidy or Interest subvention.
  • SIDBI (Small Industries Development Bank of India) is the Project management Consultant for implementing the scheme.
  • Components:
    • Pharmaceutical Technology Upgradation Assistance Scheme (PTUAS):
      • It will facilitate pharmaceutical MSMEs with proven track records to upgrade their technology.
      • It has provisions for a capital subsidy of 10 % on loans up to a maximum limit of Rs 10 crore with a minimum repayment period of three years or interest subvention of up to 5 % (6 % in case of units owned by SC/ST) on reducing balance basis.
    • Assistance to Pharma Industries for Common Facilities Scheme (API-CF):
      • It will strengthen the existing pharmaceutical clusters’ capacity for sustained growth.
      • It provides for an assistance of up to 70 % of the approved project cost or Rs 20 crore, whichever is less.
      • In case of Himalayan and north-east region, the grant-in-aid would be Rs 20 crore per cluster or 90 % of the project cost, whichever is less.
    • Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices Promotion and Development Scheme (PMPDS):
      • It will involve preparation of study reports on topics of importance for the Indian pharma and medical device industry.
      • The scheme is aimed at creating a database of pharma and medical device sectors.