Swachh Bharat Mission – Is it a Success or a Failure?

Reading Time: 7 mins

Poor sanitation is a primary cause of diseases worldwide = improving sanitation can have a beneficial impact on health both in households as well as communities. In order to meet the sanitation need, the government had launched the Swachh Bharat Mission in 2014. Since then, SBM became the world’s largest sanitation program by changing the behaviour of hundreds of millions of people with respect to toilet access and usage. However, there are also concerns regarding the overreporting of data, actual usage of toilets, etc. which we will discuss in this article.

Chandrayaan 2 – All you need to know about India’s second Lunar Mission

Reading Time: 4 mins The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) announced that India’s 2nd lunar mission Chandrayaan-2 is scheduled to be launched in July 2019. The Chandrayaan-2’s lander will touch down near Moon’s south pole in September 2019. This mission holds so much significance for Indian and international space research which we will discuss in this article.

Financial Action Task Force (FATF), Pakistan & Terror Financing – All You Need to KnowPREMIUM 

Reading Time: 4 mins

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the global watchdog that combats money laundering and terrorist financing, had grey listed Pakistan in June 2018 for not cutting down the finances of terrorist groups within its soil. Greylisting puts Pakistan under international scrutiny to prove its compliance with FATF norms. Notably, the greylisting move was initiated by the US.

Even with greylisting measures, Pulwama terror attack happened in February 2019 = FATF (with India’s lobbying) threatens Pakistan that it will be moved to the blacklist due to its failure to comply with the action plan which was due May 2019. Blacklisting could virtually cut all financial flows to Pakistan.

This big-picture article explains the following in an analytical manner with a mindmap for quick revision.

  1. What is the Financial Action Task Force (FATF)?
  2. How FATF works?
  3. What is the grey list and blacklist?
  4. What is the issue with Pakistan?
  5. Why the US initiated the move?
  6. What are the implications of placing Pakistan on FATF watchlist?
  7. Has Pakistan changed with external Pressures?
  8. Why has Pakistan failed to comply with or curtail terror funding?
  9. What is the way forward?

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Plastic Pollution – The Great Threat to Environment & Ecosystem

Reading Time: 11 mins

Plastic Pollution is the accumulation of synthetic plastic products in the environment to the point where they create problems for wildlife and their habitats as well as for human populations.

In 1907, the invention of Bakelite brought about a revolution in the materials by introducing truly synthetic plastic resins into world commerce.

However, by the end of the 20th century, plastics have become persistent polluters of different environmental niches, from Mount Everest to the bottom of the sea.

Whether being mistaken for food by animals, flooding low-lying areas by clogging drainage systems, or simply causing considerable aesthetic damage, plastics have attracted increasing global attention as a large-scale pollutant.

Millions of tonnes of plastic enter the seas each year, choking whales and other creatures, much of it in Asia. Plastic pollution has been found across the globe, from the most remote oceanic islands to high Swiss peaks. Microplastics/Microbeads have now also been found in tap water and human food around the world, with unknown implications for health.

This big-picture article explains the following in an analytical manner with a mindmap for quick revision.

  1. What is the magnitude of the plastic pollution problem?
  2. What are the major causes of plastic pollution?
  3. What are the effects of Plastic pollution?
  4. What are some of the international initiatives against plastic litter?
  5. What are India’s initiatives?
  6. What are the challenges in tackling plastic waste debris?
  7. What are the solutions?

Solid Waste Management in India – Issues & ResponsesPREMIUM 

Reading Time: 8 mins

One of the most serious issues arising out of the wave of rapid urbanization and the resultant lifestyle changes is the management of domestic and industrial solid wastes generated domestically as well as in different industries adjoining or inside the cities.

Not just the amount, but the nature of the solid waste is also changing with the growing share of plastics and packaging materials.

Municipal laws regulating the urban local bodies are unable to deal effectively with the growing problem of solid waste management.

One of the most important aspects of Solid Waste Management is dealing with the garbage dumpsites/Landfills of the cities- most of them being open and nearby to residential areas.

This article explains the following in an analytical manner with a mindmap for quick revision:

    • Some Basic Concepts
    • What is the present scenario of waste management in India?
    • What are the impacts of Waste Dumping?
    • What is Solid Waste Management?
    • How solid wastes are managed in India?
    • What are the issues/challenges with the waste management system in India?
    • What are the salient features of Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016?
    • What are the Limitations of Solid Waste Management rules?
    • What should be done?

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Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act 2017 – Pros and Cons

Reading Time: 7 mins In order to protect the rights of women employees during pregnancy and after childbirth, Indian law makes it mandatory for most establishments to offer maternity benefits to women employees.

Maternity benefit in India is mainly governed by the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 that applies to all shops and establishments with 10 or more employees. Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act, 2017 further increased the maternity benefits being provided under the Act.

National Mineral Policy 2019: In-Depth AnalysisPREMIUM 

Reading Time: 3 mins

Also read: [Table] Classical Dances in India – Compared for UPSC Prelims

Recently, the Union Cabinet approved the National Mineral Policy, 2019 (NMP 2019) which replaces the National Mineral Policy 2008 (NMP 2008).

2019 Policy was based on the report submitted in the Ministry of Mines by Dr. K Rajeswara Rao committee after reviewing NMP 2008.

This policy seeks to ensure effective regulation and sustainable development of the mining sector.

This article explains the following in an analytical manner with a mindmap for quick revision:

  1. What are the objectives of the policy?
  2. What are the key provisions?
  3. What are the significances of the policy?
  4. What are the challenges and the way forward?
  5. This content is for members only!

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