PM-CARES FUND

Context –

The Supreme Court on Thursday asked the Union government if it can immediately release money from the PM-Cares Fund for the education of children who have been orphaned or have lost legal guardians or either of their parents during the COVID¬19 pandemic.

 

Explanation

  • The government has set up the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund (PM-CARES Fund)to deal with any kind of emergency or distress situation like posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The Fund is a public charitable trustwith the Prime Minister as its Chairman. Other Members include Defence Minister, Home Minister and Finance Minister.
  • The Fund enables micro-donationsas a result of which a large number of people will be able to contribute with the smallest of denominations.
  • The Fund will strengthen disaster management capacities and encourage research on protecting citizens.
  • The Ministry of Corporate Affairs has clarified that contributions by companies towards the PM-CARES Fund will count towardsmandatory Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) expenditure.
  • It can avail donations from the foreign contribution and donationsto fund can also avail 100% tax exemption.
PMNRF (Prime Minister National Relief Fund) PM CARES Fund (Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund)
PMNRF (Prime Minister National Relief Fund) was established in January 1948. PM CARES FUND WAS ESTABLISHED ON 27TH MARCH 2020.
PMNRF was established by the first Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru. THE PM CARES FUND WAS ESTABLISHED BY THE CURRENT PRIME MINISTER OF INDIA, NARENDRA MODI.
The initial purpose of establishing PMNRF (Prime Minister National Relief Fund) was to help the people displaced due to partition of India and Pakistan. THE PM CARES FUND WAS ESTABLISHED WITH THE OBJECTIVE OF HELPING PEOPLE AFFECTED BY COVID-19 PANDEMIC.
PMNRF focuses on all kinds of natural disasters and calamities like Cyclones, Earthquakes, Floods, Tsunamis etc. The PMNRF funds are also utilized for acid attack victims, cancer treatments, kidney transplants etc. PM CARES FUND IS EXCLUSIVELY USED FOR COVID-19 PURPOSES.
Chairman of the Prime Minister National Relief Fund (PMNRF) is the Prime Minister of India. Other members are from Tata Trusts, representatives of FICCI, Congress President. CHAIRMAN OF THE PM-CARES FUND IS THE PRIME MINISTER OF INDIA. THE PRIME MINISTER HAS THE POWER TO NOMINATE MEMBERS. THE OTHER MEMBERS OF THE PM CARES FUND ARE THE DEFENCE MINISTER, HOME MINISTER AND FINANCE MINISTER.
The minimum amount one can donate in the Prime Minister National Relief Fund (PMNRF) is Rs 100. PM CARES Fund allows option for Micro donation, one can donate as low as Rs 10 in the PM CARES Fund.

 

SIMILARITIES BETWEEN PMNRF AND PM-CARES FUND

  • Spending from both the PM CARES Fund and PMNRF does not require approval from Parliament.
  • Donations to both PMNRF and PM CARES Fund will be exempted from Income Taxunder Section 80G.
  • Funds from both PM Cares and PMNRF cannot be utilized without the directions of the Prime Minister.
  • M/S SARC Associates Chartered Accountants, New Delhi are the auditors of both PMNRF and PM CARES fund.
  • Donations by companies to both PMNRF and PM CARES Fund are classified as Corporate Social Responsibility(CSR) under Companies Act 2013.
  • Both PMNRF and PM CARES do not receive budgetary support.
  • Both PMNRF and PM CARES are set up as trusts.
  • Both PM CARES and PMNRF can receive foreign contributions. They are exempted from the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA).
  • Both PM CARES and PMNRF are not audited by Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG).
  • Both PM CARES and PMNRF does not come under the Right to Information (RTI).

 

 

 

BANDIPUR TIGER RESERVE

Context –

Forest Minister of Karnataka Umesh Katti has said that the existing road passing through Bandipur is in good condition and there is no need for its widening.

Concept –

  • It was established in 1973 under Project Tiger. In 1985, by including adjacent areas from Venugopala Wildlife Park, it was enlarged and named as Bandipur National Park.
  • It is situated in two contiguous districts (Mysore and Chamarajanagar) of Karnataka and is located at the tri-junction area of the States Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
  • It forms a part of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve.
  • It lies in one of the richest biodiversity areas of the country. It is surrounded by
    • Mudumalai Tiger Reserve(Tamil Nadu) in the South,
    • Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary(Kerala) in the South-west &
    • The Kabini Reservoirseparates the Bandipur and Nagarahole Tiger Reserve on the North-west.
  • It is endowed with rich floral and faunal diversity and is recognized as one of the Mega Biodiversity Areas in the country.
  • The Bandipur along with Nagarahole, Mudumalai, Sathyamangalam & Wayanadconstitutes the single largest Wild population of Tigers in the world.
  • This Landscape is also home to the single largest Asian Elephant populationin the world and is part of the Mysore Elephant Reserve (MER).
  • The park is located between the Kabiniriverin the north and the Moyar river in the south. The Nugu river runs through the park. The highest point in the park is on a hill called Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta.

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FIRST-PAST-THE-POST SYSTEM

Concept –

  • The first-past-the-post (FPTP) system is also known as the simple majority system. In this voting method, the candidate with the highest number of votesin a constituency is declared the winner.
  • This system is used in India in direct elections to the Lok Sabha and State Legislative Assemblies.
  • While FPTP is relatively simple, it does not always allow for a truly representative mandate, as the candidate could win despite securing less than half the votes in a contest.

Proportional Representation (PR)

  • Proportional representation (PR) is a concept in which the number of seats won by a partyor group of candidates is proportionate to the number of votes received.
  • India is not new to PR system; in our country, the following elections are held on the basis of proportional representation:
    1. President
    2. Vice President
    3. Members of Rajya Sabha
    4. Members of state legislative council
First-Past-the-Post System Proportional Representation (PR)
·         The country is divided into small geographical units called constituencies or districts ·         Large geographical areas are demarcated as constituencies. The entire country can be constituency.
·         Every constituency elect one representative ·         More than one elected representative can be elected from one constituency.
·         Voters vote for the candidate ·         Voter votes for the party
·         A party can get more seats than the proportion of votes ·         Every party gets seat in the legislature proportion to the votes it get in the election
·         Candidate who wins the election may not get majority ( 50% ) of votes ·         Candidate who wins the election gets the majority ( 50%) of the votes
Example : UK, India Example : Israel, Netherland

 

 

HAWAII’S KILAUEA VOLCANO

Context –

The ground at the summit of Kilauea volcano in Hawaii has been rumbling and swelling in recent days, prompting scientists to warn that the mountain could once again disgorge lava.

Concept –

  • The volcano, which is among the world’s most active, has behaved similarly in the past without any magma breaking the surface.
  • It’s not uncommon for Kilauea to have earthquakes, which could indicate rocks are moving. It’s also not unusual for the ground to swell as the heat from the sun and saturation from rain can cause the ground to expand and contract.
  • However, earthquakes and ground swelling at the same timemay indicate magma is on the move.
  • It’s occurring at the summit of Kilauea volcano, an uninhabited area within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island. This is about 200 miles southeast of Honolulu, which is on a different island called Oahu.
  • The last time Kilauea erupted at the southern part of its caldera or crater was in 1974.
  • In Hawaiian tradition, Kilauea is home to the volcano goddess Pele.

Volcanoes –

  • A volcano is an opening in the earth’s crustthrough which gases, molten rocks materials (lava), ash, steam etc. are emitted outward in the course of an eruption.
  • Volcanic activity is an example of endogenic process.
  • Magma is the term used to denote the molten rocks and related materials seen inside earth. A weaker zone of the mantle called asthenosphere, usually is the source of magma.
  • Once this magma came out to the earth surface through the vent of a volcano, it is called as the Lava. Therefore, Lava is nothing but the magma on earth surface.
  • The process by which solid, liquid and gaseous material escape from the earth’s interior to the surface of the earth is called as Volcanism.

Types of Volcanoes –

 

CONVICTION OF MPS AND MLAs

Subject – Polity

Context –

The Supreme Court has decided to hear “at length” a plea that convicted parliamentarians and State legislators, former and sitting, should be disqualified and banned for life from contesting elections to Parliament or Assemblies.

Concept –

  • The RPA, 1951lays down certain rules for disqualification of MPs and MLAs.
  • Section 8 (3)of the Act states that if an MP or MLA is convicted for any other crime and is sent to jailfor 2 years or more, he/ she will be disqualified for 6 years from the time of release.
  • Even if a person is on bail after the conviction and his appeal is pending for disposal, he is disqualified from contesting an election.
  • Section 8(4) allowed convicted MPs, MLAs and MLCs to continue in their posts, provided they appealed against their conviction/sentence in higher courts within 3 monthsof the date of judgment by the trial court.
  • The Supreme Court in Lily Thomas Case, 2013 struck downsection 8(4) of the RPA, 1951 and declared it ultra vires and held that the disqualification takes place from the date of conviction.
  • Recently, the CJI Bench further said more special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) courts needed to be set up in places where more than 100 cases were pending “to ensure easy accessibility to the witnesses and decongestion of existing special/CBI courts”.

 

DRONE RULES 2021

SUBJECT – DEFENCE AND SECURITY

Context –

The Civil Aviation Ministry has notified the Drone Rules, 2021, under which the weight of a fully loaded unmanned aircraft system has been increased from 300 kg to 500 kg to include heavy payload-carrying craft for use in the logistics and transportation sectors. The rules will also cover drone taxis.

Concept –

  • The Ministry of Civil Aviation has unveiled theDraft Drone Rules, 2021 based on “trust, self-certification and non-intrusive monitoring”.
  • The new rules would replace the existing Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Rules, notified in March, 2021.
  • Abolish the need for various approvals, including certificate of conformance, certificate of maintenance, import clearance, acceptance of existing drones, operator permit, authorization of R&D organization and student remote pilot licence.
  • Number of forms reduced from 25 to 5.
  • Fee reduced to nominal levels. No linkage with the size of the drone.
  • Digital Sky Platform: The government will be developing a digital sky platform that will have an interactive airspace map dividing the country intogreen, yellow, and red zones.
  • The online registration of all drones will happen through the Digital Sky Platform.
  • It will provide a secure and a scalable platformthat supports drone technology frameworks, such as NPNT (no permission, no take-off), designed to enable flight permission digitally and manage unmanned aircraft operations and traffic efficiently.
  • Reduced Airport Perimeter: The draft rules reduced the airport perimeter from 45 km to 12 km.
  • The rules state that no flight permissions would be required to fly upto 400 feet in green zones and upto 200 feet in the area between 8 and 12 km from the airport perimeter.
  • No pilot licence would be needed for micro drones for non-commercial use, nano drones and for R&D organizations’.
  • There would be no restriction on drone operations by foreign-owned companies registered in India.
  • Drone Corridor: The Ministry will also facilitate development of drone corridors for cargo deliveries and a drone promotion council will be set up to facilitate a business-friendly regulatory regime.
  • Safety Features: The draft rule also provides for safety features such as real-time tracking beacon, and geo-fencing, which are expected to be notified in future and a six-month lead time will be provided for compliance.
  • Increased Coverage of Drones: The coverage has beenincreased from 300 kg to 500 kg and will cover drone taxis, while the Issuance of Certificate of Airworthiness has been delegated to Quality Council of India and certification entities authorized by it.
  • Import of drones to be regulated by DGFT.
  • The Director Generalor an entity authorized by it, on the recommendation of the Quality Council of India or an authorized testing entity, will issue a type certificate for drones. No type certificate, unique identification number, prior permission and remote pilot licence will be needed for research and development entities.
  • Importing and manufacturing drones purely for exports are now exempt from type certification and unique identification number. Manufacturers and importers will be able to generate their drones’ unique identification number on the Digital Sky Platform through the self-certification route.