Current Affairs 9 November

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9 November 2022

Uniform Civil Code
Pseudohelice annamalai
Early Warning System
Vikram­ S  
GS 2
Constitutional Provisions

Uniform Civil Code

Context -New Law panel may examine demand for uniform civil code

What is uniform civil code?

A generic set of governing laws for every citizen without taking into consideration the religion.

What the constitution says?

Article 44 of the Constitution says that there should be a Uniform Civil Code. According to this article, “The State shall endeavor to secure for the citizens a uniform civil code throughout the territory of India”. Since the Directive Principles are only guidelines, it is not mandatory to use them.

India needs a Uniform Civil Code for the following reasons:

  1. A secular republic needs a common law for all citizens rather than differentiated rules based on religious practices.
  2. Another reason why a uniform civil code is needed is gender justice. The rights of women are usually limited under religious law, be it Hindu or Muslim. The practice of triple talaq is a classic example.
  3. Many practices governed by religious tradition are at odds with the fundamental rights guaranteed in the Indian Constitution.
  4. Courts have also often said in their judgements that the government should move towards a uniform civil code including the judgement in the Shah Bano case.

Why is UCC may not desirable at this point?

  1. Secularism cannot contradict the plurality prevalent in the country. Besides, cultural diversity cannot be compromised to the extent that our urge for uniformity itself becomes a reason for threat to the territorial integrity of the nation.
  2. The term ‘secularism’ has meaning only if it assures the expression of any form of difference. This diversity, both religious and regional, should not get subsumed under the louder voice of the majority. At the same time, discriminatory practices within a religion should not hide behind the cloak of that faith to gain legitimacy.

How does the idea of a Uniform Civil Code relate to the fundamental right to religion?

Article 25 lays down an individual’s fundamental right to religion; Article 26(b) upholds the right of each religious denomination or any section thereof to “manage its own affairs in matters of religion”; Article 29 defines the right to conserve distinctive culture.

An individual’s freedom of religion under Article 25 is subject to “public order, health, morality” and other provisions relating to fundamental rights, but a group’s freedom under Article 26 has not been subjected to other fundamental rights

In the Constituent Assembly, there was division on the issue of putting Uniform Civil Code in the fundamental rights chapter. The matter was settled by a vote. By a 5:4 majority, the fundamental rights sub-committee headed by Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel held that the provision was outside the scope of fundamental rights and therefore the Uniform Civil Code was made less important than freedom of religion.

What is needed now?

Need of the hour is the codification of all personal laws so that prejudices and stereotypes in every one of them would come to light and can be tested on the anvil of fundamental rights of the Constitution. By codification of different personal laws, one can arrive at certain universal principles that prioritise equity rather than imposition of a Uniform Code, which would discourage many from using the law altogether, given that matters of marriage and divorce can also be settled extra-judicially.

GS 3
Environment and Disaster management


Context-Ranthambore fest to be held after considering impact on wildlife: NGT

  • Established on 18th October, 2010 under the National Green Tribunal Act 2010.
  • Established for effective and expeditious disposal of cases relating to environmental protection and conservation of forests and other natural resources.
  • New Delhi is the Principal Place of Sitting of the Tribunal and Bhopal, Pune, Kolkata and Chennai shall be the other four places of sitting of the Tribunal.
  • The Tribunal is not bound by the procedure laid down under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, but shall be guided by principles of natural justice.
  • NGT is mandated to make disposal of applications or appeals finally within 6 months of filing of the same.

With the establishment of the NGT, India became the third country in the world to set up a specialised environmental tribunal, only after Australia and New Zealand, and the first developing country to do so.

Pseudohelice annamalai

Context -New crab species found in T.N.

The species has been named Pseudohelice annamalai in recognition of Annamalai University’s 100 years of service in education and research. 

Early Warning System

Context -CSIR NGRI to install early warning system against floods, rockslides, and avalanches in Himalayan States

An Early Warning System (EWS) can be defined as a set of capacities needed to generate and disseminate timely and meaningful warning information of the possible extreme events or disasters (e.g. floods, drought, fire, earthquake and tsunamis) that threatens people‘s lives. The purpose of this information is to enable individuals, communities and organizations threatened to prepare and act appropriately and in sufficient time to reduce the possibility of harm, loss or risk.

Elements of Early Warning system

  • Risk Knowledge: Risk assessment provides essential information to set priorities for mitigation and prevention strategies and designing early warning systems.
  • Monitoring and Predicting: Systems with monitoring and predicting capabilities provide timely estimates of the potential risk faced by communities, economies and the environment.
  • Disseminating Information: Communication systems are needed for delivering warning messages to the potentially affected locations to alert local and regional governmental agencies. The messages need to be reliable, synthetic and simple to be understood by authorities and public.
  • Response: Coordination, good governance and appropriate action plans are a key point in effective early warning. Likewise,

Role of early warning systems

  • They prevent loss of life, as well as reducing the economic impact of natural hazards.
    • Increasing the availability of multi-hazard early warning systems and disaster risk information is one of seven global targets set by The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030.
    • Warning to fishermen on coasts to not venture into seas.
  • Disaster preparedness: Knowing about an impending danger can save lives and property. The cost of damage due to disaster in India, every year is estimated to be $87 billion due to cyclones, floods and droughts. This can be prevented to a great extent.
  • Protecting critical infrastructure: This is especially true for Onshore windmills, nuclear plants close to coast, critical bridges in border areas that are at risk of damage due to disasters. It will impact the security and safety of the nation.
  • Diplomacy: India’s Tsunami warning centre in the Indian ocean under the aegis of INCOIS, has been helpful in disseminating information for littoral states of Indian ocean. This has helped in increasing soft power diplomacy and achieve leadership of India in the Indo-Pacific.
  • Saving biodiversity and wildlife: Many endangered Rhinos in Assam were rehabilitated due to risk of flooding of Brahmaputra last year. In turn it can save the whole ecosystem and the biodiversity of the place.
Science and Technology

Vikram­ S

Context -First privately developed rocket all set for launch

It was developed by the Hyderabad ­based Skyroot Aerospace. 

The mission named ‘Prarambh’ (the beginning) — since it is the first mission for Skyroot — was unveiled by ISRO Chairman S. Somanath in Bengaluru

With this maiden mission, Skyroot is set to become the first private space company in India to launch a rocket into space, heralding a new era for the space sector which was recently opened up to facilitate private sector participation, said CEO and co-founder Pawan Kumar Chandana.

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