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The Hindu PDF 13 December 2023 Analysis

The Hindu PDF GKGSCA

The Hindu PDF 13 December 2023 Newspaper is considered an important source of news and information for UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) aspirants in India. This The Hindu Epaper PDF newspaper covers a wide range of topics that are relevant to the UPSC exam, including politics, economics, international relations, governance, and social issues.

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The Hindu Epaper Analysis 13 December 2023 for UPSC

Bhajan Lal Sharma will be new CM of Rajasthan: Page 1

  • Bhajan Lal Sharma chosen as the new Chief Minister of Rajasthan by BJP
  • Sharma, a first-time MLA from Sanganer, Jaipur
  • Announcement made at a BJP legislature party meeting in the presence of Rajnath Singh
  • Vasundhara Raje proposed Sharma’s name, seconded by senior leaders
  • Sharma defeated Congress’s Pushpendra Bhardwaj in recent Assembly election
  • Diya Kumari and Prem Chand Bairwa appointed as Deputy Chief Ministers
  • Caste combination for diversity: Brahmin Chief Minister, Rajput and Scheduled Caste Deputy Chief Ministers
  • Vasudev Devnani appointed as the new Assembly Speaker
  • Governor Kalraj Mishra received a letter from BJP informing about Sharma’s election with a list of 115 MLAs
  • Swearing-in ceremony likely on December 15
  • Sharma expresses commitment to meet people’s expectations; Ashok Gehlot expects development continuity

Lok Sabha passes Bills for women’s quota in J&K, Puducherry: Page 1

  • Lok Sabha passes two Bills extending 33% reservation for women in Lok Sabha and State Assemblies to Jammu and Kashmir and Puducherry.
  • Bills introduced by Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai.
  • The Bills are Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Second Amendment) Bill and the Government of Union Territories (Amendment) Bill.
  • The debate dominated by the Supreme Court’s verdict on Monday regarding Article 370.
  • Provisions needed to amend the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, for women’s reservation in the Legislative Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir.
  • Similar provisions needed for women’s reservation in the Puducherry Assembly.
  • National Conference’s Hasnain Masoodi highlights the absence of an MLA in Jammu and Kashmir for the last six years, emphasizing the need for representation.

Retail inflation rises to 5.55% in November: Page 1

  • Consumer prices rose to 5.55% in November, up from 4.87% in October.
  • Food price inflation increased to 8.7% from 6.6%, driven by higher rates for vegetables, pulses, fruits, and sugar.
  • Rural inflation was higher at 5.85% compared to urban areas at 5.3%.
  • Urban food prices rose at 9.3%, while rural food prices were up 8.4%.
  • Month-on-month, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) increased by 0.54%, with rural prices up 0.64%.
  • Overall consumer price inflation stood at 5.88% in November 2022, with the food price index rising 4.7%.
  • Reserve Bank of India (RBI) expects inflation to average 5.6% between October and December, possibly reaching 6.4% in the current month.
  • Cereals inflation remained in double digits at 10.3%, while meat and fish inflation eased to 2.15%.
  • Milk inflation decreased from 6.44% to 5.75%, and egg prices grew 5.9%.
  • Pulses inflation hardened to 20.23%, vegetables inflation hit 17.7%, and fruit prices increased by almost 11%.
  • Non-food prices rose at a milder pace than October, including clothing and footwear (3.9%), education (5.01%), healthcare (5.51%), household goods and services (3.56%), and housing (3.55%).
  • Odisha recorded the highest inflation at 7.65% in November, followed by Rajasthan at 7%, and Haryana with 6.8%.
  • Inflation was above the central bank’s tolerance threshold of 6% in eight states, including Gujarat, Bihar, Punjab, Karnataka, and Telangana.
  • Uttar Pradesh had a 5.56% inflation, the only major state with higher inflation than the national average of 5.55%.
  • Cereals and spices persist in double-digit inflation for the 15th and 18th consecutive months, respectively.
  • Core inflation (excluding food and energy prices) eased to 4.2% in November, the lowest in the post-pandemic period.

Game-changer: Page IO

  • Casgevy and Lyfgenia, gene therapies for sickle cell disease, approved by the U.S. FDA for patients over 12.
  • Casgevy was previously approved by the UK drug regulator for sickle cell disease and beta thalassemia.
  • Approval for Casgevy gene therapy for treating beta thalassemia expected by March 2024.
  • These approvals signal the use of CRISPR-Cas9 for gene therapy, replacing the need for bone marrow transplantation.
  • Lyfgenia uses a disabled lentivirus as a vector, introducing a new gene for hemoglobin, while Casgevy uses CRISPR-Cas9 to disable the BCL11A gene, promoting fetal hemoglobin production.
  • Clinical trials showed promising results, with Casgevy relieving 28 of 29 sickle cell disease patients for a year and reducing blood transfusion needs in beta thalassemia patients.
  • Lyfgenia demonstrated positive outcomes, with reduced severe blocked blood flow events in sickle cell disease patients.
  • Both gene therapies use patients’ own blood cells, eliminating the need for bone marrow donors.
  • The treatments are potentially expensive, and only certain hospitals equipped for genetic editing can administer them, limiting accessibility.
  • Continuous monitoring of safety and efficacy is crucial due to the potential for unintended genetic modifications and side effects when using CRISPR-Cas9.

India’s extreme rainfall ‘corridor’: Page 12

  • Indian monsoon affected by global warming, with total seasonal rainfall trending downwards for over seven decades.
  • New study finds a stationary corridor for large-scale extreme rainfall events from West Bengal and Odisha to Gujarat and Rajasthan, unchanged from 1901 to 2019.
  • Despite changes in various aspects of the monsoon, the trapping of extreme events in a narrow corridor offers potential for better predictions.
  • Traditional statistical methods may miss complex relations between rainfall nodes; network analysis reveals nodes following the ‘highway’ for over a century.
  • Analysis of winds and circulation features indicates the monsoon domain has remained stable for the formation of extreme events.
  • The corridor is also associated with monsoon depressions, increasing at 3-10-day timescales and decreasing at 10-60-day frequencies.
  • Geographic trapping likely linked to the range of mountains along the west coast and across Central India.
  • Implications for forecasts suggest improving synchronization dynamics rather than increasing model resolution and computational cost.
  • Potential benefits include reducing risks for agriculture, water, energy, transportation, and health from large-scale extreme rainfall events.
  • India has modeling capacity and computational resources to exploit the findings and improve forecasts.

What are the implications of recent Argentine elections?: Page 12

  • Javier Milei, a far-right libertarian, sworn in as President of Argentina on December 10.
  • Won the election on November 19, defeating left-leaning Economic Minister Sergio Massa.
  • Milei, a radical libertarian economist and anarcho-capitalist, known for challenging the political elite and advocating for drastic changes.
  • His policy proposals include dollarizing the economy, implementing spending cuts, halting public works projects, and lifting trade and currency controls.
  • Advocates for limited government, respect for private property, reducing federal ministries, and privatizing state-owned media.
  • Election results signify the fall of Peronism, marking the first time since 2015 that a Peronist government failed to win.
  • Reflects a rise of the right in Argentina, with discontent among segments seeking a break from tradition.
  • Disillusionment with traditional parties’ handling of economic challenges led to support for unconventional approaches, particularly among the youth.
  • Milei plans to align with the United States, Israel, and the free world, but criticizes working with China, Brazil, and Russia.
  • Concerns about negative implications for Argentina’s trade, especially with China and Brazil.
  • Uncertain whether Milei can implement radical policies, as his party holds a minority in the lower house.
  • Regional ramifications as Argentina diverges from the recent ‘pink tide’ of left-leaning governments in Latin America.

Rajya Sabha passes Bill for appointment of CEC, ECs: Page 14

  • Rajya Sabha passes Chief Election Commissioner and Other Election Commissioners (Appointment, Conditions of Service and Term of Office) Bill.
  • Law Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal denies Opposition’s charges that Supreme Court is being kept away, stating the Bill was prepared following a direction from the Supreme Court.
  • The Bill aims to guide the appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) and Election Commissioners (ECs) in the future, making the process transparent.
  • Meghwal mentions that appointments so far have not been guided by any laws, and the Bill introduces a search-and-selection committee for the process.
  • The 1991 Act lacked a clause related to the appointment of CEC and ECs, and the Bill addresses this gap.
  • A clause related to protection from legal proceedings against the CEC and ECs for actions taken while carrying out their duties is introduced.
  • Two amendments brought to align the protocol, salaries, and emoluments of CEC and ECs with Supreme Court judges.
  • Opposition’s proposal to send the Bill to a select committee is rejected by the House.
  • Opposition questions the government’s intent, with Congress general secretary Randeep Singh Surjewala stating that the Bill violates the Constitution.
  • Surjewala argues that the Bill subjugates the Election Commission to the authority of the Executive and negates the judgment of the Supreme Court.
  • He emphasizes the need for an independent appointment mechanism to avoid bias, accusing the government of wanting a pocket borough and criticizing the process as arbitrary and malicious.

74% Indians could not afford healthy diet in 2021: report: Page 16

  • More than 74% of Indians could not afford a healthy diet in 2021, a slight improvement from 76.2% in 2020, according to a report by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
  • In Pakistan, 82.2% of the population faced difficulties in finding healthy food, while in Bangladesh, the figure was 66.1%.
  • Rising food costs, without a corresponding increase in income, could result in more people being unable to afford a healthy diet, the report highlighted.
  • The report, titled “Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition 2023: Statistics and Trends,” assesses progress in meeting Sustainable Development Goals and World Health Assembly global nutrition targets.
  • The Asia Pacific region, during the pandemic and the “5Fs” crisis (food, feed, fuel, fertilizer, and finance), witnessed challenges, with 370.7 million undernourished people representing half of the global total.
  • The region accounts for half of the world’s severe food insecurity, with higher prevalence rates of stunting, wasting, and overweight among children under 5 years of age, as well as anaemia among women of reproductive age.
  • In India, 16.6% of the population was undernourished, and 31.7% of children under five showed stunted growth. India recorded the highest rate of wasting in the region, with 18.7% of children under five facing this health problem.
  • The prevalence of anaemia among women aged 15 to 49 in India was 53%, the highest in the region in 2019.
  • Exclusive breastfeeding among infants aged 0-5 months improved in India, with a prevalence of 63.7%, higher than the world prevalence of 47.7%.
  • India had the highest prevalence of low birth weight in the region (27.4%), followed by Bangladesh and Nepal.

Modi kicks off global Al summit: Page 16

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the annual Global Partnership for Artificial Intelligence (GPAI) Summit in New Delhi.
  • Discussions focused on AI issues, including safety, development challenges, and the need to address ethical, economic, and social aspects for building trust in AI.
  • Modi proposed establishing an institutional mechanism for resilient employment and a standardized global AI education curriculum.
  • The idea of watermarking AI products was mentioned to distinguish AI-generated imagery, addressing concerns about ‘deepfake’ content and misuse of AI-generated images.
  • Concerns were raised about terrorists accessing AI tools and the potential for increased cybersecurity and data theft incidents.
  • Modi emphasized the importance of transparency in AI, calling for visibility into the algorithms used in creating AI models.
  • The summit includes 29 countries, excluding China, with India set to be the lead chair in 2024.
  • Discussions at the summit cover various topics, including issues related to farming and healthcare.

Base effects boosted IIP growth to 11.7% in October: Page 18

  • India’s factory output grew at a 16-month high rate of 11.7% in October, rebounding from a 5.8% rate in September.
  • The growth is attributed to base effects from the previous year when output had dropped by 4.1%.
  • Manufacturing output increased by 10.4%, compared to a 5.8% contraction in October 2022.
  • 19 out of 23 manufacturing sectors experienced growth in October.
  • On an end-use basis, all six segments showed growth in October, with double-digit growth in capital goods (22.6%), consumer durables (15.9%), primary goods (11.4%), and construction goods (11.3%).
  • Consumer non-durables’ production increased by 8.6%, contrasting with a 13% contraction in the same period last year.
  • Aditi Nayar, chief economist at ICRA, noted that the index values for consumer durables and non-durables in October were below their 2021 levels.

Source: The Hindu Epaper

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