Weekly Current Affairs Prelims (10th to 16th January, 2019)

Sikkim launches 'One Family, One Job' scheme

 

Weekly Current Affairs Prelims (10th to 16th January, 2019)

 

Topic: Govt launches Web – Wonder Women Campaign

Topic in Syllabus: Indian Society

 

Govt launches Web-Wonder Women Campaign

Why in news?

The government recently launched Web- Wonder Women Campaign to celebrate the exceptional achievements of women who have influenced and impacted society through social media.

 

Objectives:

  • The Campaign aims to discover and celebrate the exceptional achievements of women, who have been driving positive agenda of social change via social media.
  • This Campaign will recognize and acknowledge the efforts of these meritorious Women.

 

More about on campaign:

  • Through the campaign, the Ministry and the Campaign’s Partners aim to recognize the fortitude of Indian women stalwarts from across the globe who have used the power of social media to run positive & niche campaigns to steer a change in society.
  • Indian women have always been enterprising and have created a positive impact on society with their hard-work, experience and knowledge.
  • Women online, though niche, are a very powerful voice. #www: WebWonderWomen is a campaign to specially honour and encourage such voices that have in their own capacity driven a positive impact on social media platforms.
  • The Ministry is glad to partner with Breakthrough and Twitter India on this.

 

About nomination for campaign:

  • The Campaign invites Entries via Nominations from across the world, as per the laid out criteria.
  • Indian-origin women, working or settled anywhere in the world, are eligible for nomination.
  • The shortlisted entries will be open for public voting on Twitter and the finalists will be selected by a specialized panel of judges.
  • Nominations have been invited in a large number of categories including Health, Media, Literature, Art, Sports, Environmental protection, and fashion among others.

 

Sample Question:

 Which of the followings are correct with respect to Web- Wonder Women Campaign

  1. The Campaign aims to discover and celebrate the exceptional achievements of women, who have been driving positive agenda of social change via social media.
  2. The campaign is launched by NITI Aayog.

Choose the correct answer from the codes given below

a). 1 only

b). 2 only

c). Both 1 and 2

d). Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: a)

 


 

Topic: What a Harappan grave says about marriage

Topic in Syllabus: Ancient History

 

What a Harappan grave says about marriage

Why in news?

Recently A rare grave of a couple the skeletal remains of a young man and woman, interred with his face turned towards her has been excavated at the Harappan settlement at Rakhigarhi in Haryana.

 

About research:

  • Archaeologists from the Deccan College Deemed University, Pune, who are excavating the site, said the skeletons were found lying face up with arms and legs extended.
  • They said evidence indicated that the couple was buried simultaneously or about the same time.
  • The findings were recently published in the peer-reviewed international journal, ACB Journal of Anatomy and Cell Biology.
  • The excavation and analysis were undertaken by the university’s department of archaeology and Institute of Forensic Science, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Korea.

 

More about excavation:

  • A team of Indian and South Korean researchers, led by Vasant Shinde of Deccan College, Pune, carried out excavations in Rakhigarhi, one of the most prominent sites of the Harappan civilisation, between 2013 and 2016.
  • The excavations have made news as details of the finds have emerged periodically.
  • The skeletal remains of the couple were discovered from a site where nine graves were unearthed in one trench.
  • Except for the foot bones, the two skeletons have been found almost entirely intact.
  • Of the 62 graves discovered in Rakhigarhi, only this one had more than one skeleton — and of individuals of the opposite sex, together.
  • The researchers believe the couple were buried at almost the same time, perhaps even together, following their deaths which could have occurred about 4,700 years ago.
  • They believe the male was around 38 years old at the time of his death, while the female was around 25.

Connecting to a lost world

 

Findings about marriage:

  • A rare discovery at an ancient Harappan site shows that death doesn’t even mean the end for some relationships.
  • The couple’s burial stands out from others in a sprawling cemetery.
  • Even in the grave, the man was laid to rest in such a way that it appears he’s still admiring his partner.
  • It’s definitely not the only example of a double burial from an ancient civilization, but archaeologists held back from releasing the discovery for a couple years to be sure they’d have enough information to explain the first concrete example of a Harappan couple’s burial.
  • The ancient Harappan couple may not have been buried with much, the grave goods in their case are actually quite sparse, but the manner in which they were laid to rest makes their burial a special one.

 

About burial patterns:

  • Broadly, three types of graves have been discovered at Harappan sites.
  • In the most common type, known as the primary grave, archaeologists have found full-body remains of the person placed inside a pit.
  • Secondary pits were those that contained partial remains of a few bones placed in the pit.
  • In the third type of the grave, skeletal remains were completely missing in the burial pit.
  • Instead, there were some accessories, presumably the belongings of the deceased person.
  • Perhaps the body could not be ever retrieved, possibly in cases of deaths caused by wild animals or during wars.
  • So far, at Harappan sites, most graves have been that of men.
  • Only 20% of graves are of women, while less than 1% are of children.
  • Excavations of cemeteries so far have found that graves of women were positioned in the centre of the cemetery, and surrounded with bangles, jewellery, and other ornaments.
  • This, experts suggest, could mean that the Harappan society gave a higher status to women.

 

Sample Question:

Consider the following with respect to Indus valley civilization

  1. In terms of culture , it is the only surviving civilization in the world
  2. It was first discovered in 1921
  3. It’s discovery pushed back the antiquities of Indian history for another 2000 years

Choose the correct answer from the above

a). 2 only

b). 1 and 2 only

c). 2 and 3 only

d). All of the above

Answer: d) 

 


 

Topic: India moves up a rank on The Economist’s Democracy Index 2018

Topic in Syllabus: Indian Polity

 

India moves up a rank on The Economist's Democracy Index 2018

Why in news?

The eleventh edition of the Democracy Index reveals that political participation is on the rise in almost every region of the world.

 

More about on news:

  • The Economist’s Democracy Index has a positive outlook on global democracy, with significant improvement in women’s participation, people willing to engage in lawful demonstrations and voters getting more proactive than ever despite being disillusioned with democracy.
  • But the annual index that has been produced by the London-headquartered newspaper since 2006, has noted that not much has changed in India.
  • The report defines a flawed democracy as nations that “have free and fair elections and, even if there are problems (such as infringements on media freedom), basic civil liberties are respected.
  • However, there are significant weaknesses in other aspects of democracy, including problems in governance, an underdeveloped political culture and low levels of political participation.
  • Norway was the world’s most perfect democracy followed by Iceland and Sweden.

 

About India’s rankings:

  • India achieved a score of 7.23 on the index to maintain its position – the same it did last year.
  • India is ranked at 41 – a notch above last year
  • This is the lowest ever score attributed to India in the index ever since its publication.
  • India ranks below the US (ranked 25th in the index) and other so called ‘flawed democracies’ like Italy, France, Botswana and South Africa.
  • On expected lines, Scandinavian nations hogged were perched on top of the democracy pyramid.
  • Among all the parameters India fared the worst when it came to political culture.

 

About Democracy Index:

  • The Democracy Index is an index compiled by the UK-based company the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU)
  • It intends to measure the state of democracy.
  • The survey is carried out every year by asking a sample group of people a set of 60 questions.
  • It ranks nations on five parameters –
    • electoral process and pluralism,
    • functioning of government,
    • political participation,
    • political culture
    • civil liberties

 

Sample Question:

According to the latest Democracy Index what is the rank of India?

a). 39

b). 32

c). 41

d). 60

Answer: c) 

 


 

Topic: Market risk, economic growth to drive gold demand in 2019: WGC

Topic in Syllabus: Indian Economy

 

Market risk economic growth to drive gold demand in 2019

Why in news?

Increased market uncertainty and expansion of protectionist economic policies will make gold increasingly attractive as a hedge in 2019, says the latest report by the World Gold Council (WGC).

 

More about on news:

  • According to WGC, key trends that are expected to influence the precious metal’s price performance include financial market instability, monetary policy and the U.S. dollar and the structural economic reforms.
  • Against this backdrop, we believe that gold has an increasingly relevant role to play in investors’ portfolios,” the report added, while highlighting that in 2019 global investors would continue to favour gold as an effective diversifier and hedge against systemic risk.
  • Gold’s performance in the near-term would be heavily influenced by perceptions of risk, the direction of the dollar, and the impact of structural economic reforms, WGC said.
  • In the longer term, gold will be supported by the development of the middle class in emerging markets, its role as an asset of last resort, and the ever-expanding use of gold in technological applications,” the report stated.
  • Incidentally, gold prices witnessed a see-saw journey in 2018 as investor interest ebbed and flowed despite steady growth in most sectors of demand.
  • The precious metal also faced headwinds for most part of 2018 with the dollar strengthening, the Fed continuing to hike rates steadily while other central banks keeping policy accommodative, and the U.S. economy getting a fillip in the form of tax cuts.

 

World Gold Council:

  • The World Gold Council is the market development organization for the gold industry.
  • It works across all parts of the industry, from gold mining to investment, and their aim is to stimulate and sustain demand for gold.
  • They frequently publish research that demonstrates gold’s strength as a preserver of wealth – both for investors and countries.
  • They also provide analysis of the industry, offering insights into the drivers of gold demand.
  • They have also launched various products such as SPDR GLD and gold accumulation plans in India and China
  • The World Gold Council is an association whose members comprise the world’s leading gold mining companies.
  • It helps to support its members to mine in a responsible way and developed the Conflict Free Gold Standard.
  • Headquartered in London United Kingdom, they have offices in India, China, Singapore, Japan and the United States.

 

Sample Question:

Which of the followings are correct with respect to World Gold Council (WGC)

  1. The World Gold Council is an association whose members comprise the world’s leading gold mining companies.
  2. World Gold Council (WGC) launched various products such as SPDR GLD and gold accumulation plans in India and China.
  3. The council provide analysis of the industry, offering insights into the drivers of gold demand.

Choose the correct answer from the above

a). 1 only

b). 1 and 2 only

c). 1 and 3 only

d). All of the above

Answer: d) 

 


 

Topic: National Youth Parliament Festival 2019 launched

Topic in Syllabus: Indian Governance

 

National Youth Parliament Festival 2019 launched

Why in news?

Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports recently launched the National Youth Parliament Festival 2019 at a function in New Delhi. The festival will continue till 24th of next month.

 

More about on news:

  • It is to provide a chance to the youth to brainstorm about new India and to find ways and chalk out plans to realize our resolves before 2022.
  • Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports proposes to take the Youth Festival to each district of the country and celebrate it as the “National Youth Parliament Festival”.
  • Organizing District Youth Parliaments and taking the festival to the doorsteps of the youth would provide an opportunity to large number of youth of this country to participate.
  • National Youth Parliament Festival 2019 is organised on the theme of “Be the Voice of New India” and “Find solutions and contribute to policy”.
  • Youth in the age bracket of 18-25 years are invited to participate in the District Youth Parliaments.
  • This is done in order to hear the voice of youth in this age bracket who are allowed to vote but cannot contest in elections.
  • The National Youth Parliament Festival will also encourage the youth to engage with public issues, understand the common man’s point of view, form their opinion and express these in an articulate manner.
  • Relevant and effective voices on the vision of New India would be captured and documented to make these available to policy makers and implementers to take it forward.

 

The National Youth Parliament Festival 2019 will be conducted at three levels:

  • District Youth Parliament (DYP) at the district level. The participants for DYP would be selected through two screening processes i.e. Digital and Walk-in screenings in Nodal Institution in each district.
  • State Youth Parliament (SYP) at the State Level.
  • National Youth Parliament (NYP) at the National Level.

 

Rewards:

  • A maximum of 50 best speakers from the Digital screening and 50 best speakers from Walk-in process, shortlisted by the Screening Committee in each district, will participate in the District Youth Parliaments.
  • The best three speakers selected by a Jury from each District Youth Parliament will participate at the State Youth Parliament.
  • The two best speakers selected from each State Youth Parliament will participate as speakers in the National Youth Parliament.
  • The highest scorer from each District in the District Youth Parliament (DYP) will participate in the National Youth Parliament (NYP) as a delegate.
  • It is expected that more than 50 thousand youth will participate through Youth Parliaments at all levels and the narrative will be strengthened and made more vibrant by their voices and ideas and suggestions.

 

Sample Question:

Which of the following ministry recently launched National Youth Parliament Festival 2019.

a). Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs

b). NITI Aayog

c). Ministry of Human Resource Development

d). Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports

Answer: d) 

 


 

Topic: Sikkim launches ‘One Family, One Job’ scheme

Topic in Syllabus: Schemes and Programmes

 

 Sikkim launches 'One Family, One Job' schemeWhy in news?

Sikkim Chief Minister recently launched ‘One Family, One Job’ scheme that envisions employment to a member of every family which does not have a government job in the state.

 

More about on scheme:

  • Also declared that all loan debts in the farming and agriculture sector would be revoked.
  • Chamling, the longest serving Chief Minister in independent India, personally handed out temporary appointment letters to two beneficiaries from each of the 32 Assembly constituencies in the state as a token gesture to kick start the scheme during ‘Rojgar Mela 2019’.
  • The scheme envisions employment to a member of every family which does not have a government job in the state.
  • Under this scheme, all loan debts in the farming and agriculture sector would be revoked.
  • At present recruitments are being made for Group C and Group D posts in 12 government departments.
  • Sikkim has become the first state in the country to carry out such an exclusive programme for the people who would now be entitled to state government employee benefits.

 

Implementation of the scheme:

  • Chamling’s Sikkim Democratic Font government earlier announced that 20,000 youths would immediately be given temporary jobs under the scheme.
  • Once the formal launch of the programme was over, the officials took over and carried out the job of distributing appointment letters. In all, 11,772 people have issued appointment letters.
  • The budget allocations have been made for 89 days in the current financial year for paying emoluments to the new recruits, and fresh provisions would be made in the next financial year.
  • At present recruitments are being made for Group C and Group D posts in 12 government departments.

 

Sample Question:

With respect to “One Family, One Job”, consider the following statements

  1. ‘One Family, One Job’ scheme is recently launched by Haryana Govenment.
  2. The scheme envisions employment to a member of every family which does not have a government job in the state.
  3. Under the scheme all loan debts in the farming and agriculture sector would be revoked.

Choose the correct answer from the above

a). 1 and 2 only

b). 2 only

c). 2 and 3 only

d). All of the above

Answer: c) 

 


 

Topic: Is ‘compromise’ the route that one stop centres should choose?

Topic in Syllabus: Indian Society

 

Is ‘compromise’ the route that one stop centres should choose

Why in news?

More than 1,90,000 victims across the country have accessed these centres, sponsored by the Centre under the Nirbhaya fund.

 

Facts:

  • So far, 234 OSCs have been set up and 485 more are in the pipeline to cover all 719 districts in the country.
  • According to government data shared before Parliament, more than 1,90,000 women across the country have accessed these centres.
  • According to National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB) data for 2015, Ajmer ranked third among all districts in Rajasthan in terms of crimes against women and recorded 1,303 such cases.
  • Of these 792 or 60% of crimes pertained to cruelty by husband or his family.

 

One Stop Centre Scheme:

  • One Stop Centre Scheme, also known as “Sakhi Centres” aims at establishing centres to facilitate women affected by violence.
  • It provides First aid, Medical aid, Police assistance, Legal aid and counselling support.
  • The scheme facilitates a mechanism of support and redressal for the women facing sexual, physical, psychological, emotional and economic abuse, irrespective of race, caste, creed, class, age, education status, culture or marital status.
  • Specialised services would be provided to the aggrieved women facing any kind of violence due to attempted acid attacks, witch-hunting, domestic violence, trafficking, sexual assault or sexual harassment and have reached out or been referred to the OSC.

Ministry of Women and Child Development

 

Objective

  • To provide integrated support and assistance to women affected by violence, both in private and public spaces under one roof.
  • To facilitate immediate, emergency and non – emergency access to a range of services including medical, legal, psychological and counselling support under one roof to fight against any forms of violence against women.
  • The OSC will support all women including girls below 18 years of age affected by violence, irrespective of caste, class, religion, region, sexual orientation or marital status.

 

Accessing One Stop Centre:

A woman affected by violence can access OSC in the following manner:

  • By herself
  • Through any person including any public spirited citizen, public servant (as defined under section 21 of Indian Penal Code, 1860), relative, friend, NGO, volunteer etc.
  • Through Women Helpline integrated with police, ambulance and other emergency response helplines.

 

Nirbhaya Fund:

  • The fund is created by the Ministry of Finance in 2013, dedicated for implementation of initiatives aimed at enhancing the safety and security for women in the country.
  • It is a non-lapsable corpus fund.
  • An Empowered Committee of Officers under the Secretary of Women and Child Development Ministry was setup in 2016 to monitor the fund.
  • It is an inter-ministerial committee appraises and recommends various projects proposed by different Ministries to be funded from the Nirbhaya Fund.

The Nirbhaya Fund

 

Sample Question:

Which of the followings are correct with respect to Sakhi One Stop Centres

  1. It aims to facilitate access to integrated range of services including medical aid, police assistance, legal aid and case management, psychosocial counselling and temporary support services to women affected by violence.
  2. It is being implemented since April 1, 2016.
  3. It is funded from Nirbhaya Fund.

Choose the correct answer from the above

a). 1 only

b). 1 and 3 only

c). 1 and 2 only

d). All of the above

Answer: b) 

 


 

Topic: Textiles Minister Meets Participants of Know India Programme

Topic in Syllabus: Indian Economy

 

Textiles Minister Meets Participants of Know India Programme

Why in news?

Participants of 51st edition of Know India Programmes (KIP) called on the Union Minister of Textiles, Smriti Zubin Irani, in New Delhi recently.

 

More about on news:

  • This edition of KIP has been scheduled from January 5thto 29thJanuary, 2019 in partnership with Gujarat.
  • The participants will also visit Gujarat for 10-days from January 10thto 19thJanuary, 2019.
  • There are forty participants, of which 26 are women,from 8 countries of Fiji, Guyana, Mauritius, Myanmar, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Suriname, and Trinidad & Tobago and USA.
  • The KIP is a 25-day orientation programme organized by the Ministry of External Affairs in partnership with the states of India.

 

Know India Programme (KIP):

  • Know India Programme (KIP) is a flagship initiative for Diaspora engagement which familiarizes Indian-origin youth (18-30 years) with their Indian roots and contemporary India, through a three-week orientation programme organized by the Ministry.
  • In 2016, the scheme was revamped to increase duration from 21 to 25 days, with a 10-day visit to one or two States and preference given to PIOs from Girmitiya countries.
  • The participants are in the age group of 18 to 30.
  • The program aims to connect them with their motherland.
  • The main objective is to motivate and inspire young minds and to give them an exposure to various aspects of India’s art, heritage and culture.
  • It also aims to promote awareness about different facets of life in the country and the progress made by India in various fields.
  • KIP provide a unique forum for students & young professionals of Indian origin to visit India, share their views, expectations & experiences and to develop closer bonds with the contemporary India.
  • So far a total number of 1460 PIO youths have participated in this programme, till 44th KIP.

 

Sample Question:

With respect to Know India Program (KIP), consider the following statements

  1. It is an initiative of the Government of India with an aim to engage the students and young professionals of Indian Diaspora.
  2. The participants are in the age group of 15 to 30.
  3. The program aims to connect them with their motherland.

Choose the correct answer from the above

a). 1 only

b). 1 and 2 only

c). 1 and 3 only

d). All of the above

Answer: c)