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The Hindu PDF 16 February 2024 Analysis


The Hindu PDF 16 February 2024 Newspaper is considered an important source of news and information for UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) aspirants in India. 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.

In the following article, we have shared the key points from The Hindu Newspaper today pdf for the students preparing for the UPSC and other competitive exams. These points from The Hindu newspaper pdf serve as current affairs material for their preparation.

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The Hindu Epaper Analysis 16 February 2024 for UPSC

SC strikes down electoral bonds scheme, calls it unconstitutional: Page I
  • Supreme Court declares electoral bonds scheme unconstitutional and manifestly arbitrary
  • Scheme provides blanket anonymity to political donors
  • Amendments to Representation of the People Act, Companies Act, and Income Tax Act violated voters’ right to information about political funding
  • Scheme promotes corruption and allows unrestrained influence of corporates in electoral process
  • Contributions made by companies are purely business transactions aimed at securing benefits
  • Scheme promotes economic inequality by giving corporations unsurpassable advantage in electoral process
  • Fundamentals of free and fair elections and political equality violated
  • Court dismisses government’s argument that anonymity incentivises financial contributions through banking channels
  • Chief Justice distinguishes between donations by corporates for favours and contributions by individuals as support for political beliefs
  • Court rejects government’s claim that scheme was meant to curb black money in electoral process
  • Amendments introduced via Finance Act 2017 removed restrictions on political funding disclosure
  • Amendments allowed complete exemption for political parties to publish contributions received through electoral bonds
  • Restrictions on corporate donations lifted, allowing unlimited and anonymous contributions
  • Government companies allowed to make contributions, and distinction between profit-making and loss-making companies removed
Modi invites Qatar’s ruler to visit India: Page 1
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi invites Qatar’s ruler Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani to visit India
  • Invitation extended during their interaction in Qatar
  • Modi expresses gratitude for release of eight Indian Navy veterans accused in espionage case
  • Visit aimed at strengthening India-Qatar friendship and cooperation in trade, investment, technology, and culture
  • Modi thanks Qatar for hospitality
  • Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra expresses India’s gratitude for release of individuals
  • Seven of the eight individuals flown back home earlier in the week
  • Modi’s visit to Qatar follows his two-day visit to the United Arab Emirates
  • Modi meets Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jasim Al-Thani in Qatar
  • Despite tensions over Navy veterans’ case, India and Qatar seal $78-billion deal on supply of liquefied natural gas to India
  • Qatar is an important energy supplier to India
‘India has rejected demand for data exclusivity in drug development in FTA talks’: Page 1
  • India rejects demand for ‘data exclusivity’ in ongoing discussions with European Free Trade Association (EFTA) for a free trade agreement
  • Data exclusivity clause entails a minimum six-year embargo on clinical trial data for drug development
  • Manufacturers would need to generate their own data or wait before selling copycat products in India
  • India’s generic drug industry could be affected as it provides affordable versions of expensive drugs globally
  • Demands for data exclusivity have been made by the European Union and EFTA since 2008
  • India consistently rejects these demands
  • Leaked draft of Trade and Economic Partnership Agreement (TEPA) suggested inclusion of data exclusivity clause
  • India stands with its generic drug industry and rejects the demand
  • Ministry’s stance welcomed by Medicins Sans Frontiers (MSF) South Asia
  • MSF expresses concern over potential harm from accepting data exclusivity provisions
INSAT-3DS mission to be launched from Sriharikota tomorrow: Page 6
  • GSLV-F14 carrying INSAT-3DS scheduled for launch from Sriharikota at 5.35 p.m. on Saturday
  • Earlier scheduled launch time was 5.30 p.m.
  • GSLV-F14 is 16th flight of Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) and 10th flight with indigenous cryo stage
  • Seventh operational flight of GSLV with indigenous cryogenic stage
  • INSAT-3DS satellite to be placed in geosynchronous transfer orbit
  • Mission designed for enhanced meteorological observations, monitoring land and ocean surfaces for weather forecasting and disaster warning
  • Primary objectives include monitoring Earth’s surface, oceanic observations, providing vertical profile of meteorological parameters, and satellite aided search and rescue services
Unbonded: Page 10
  • Supreme Court’s verdict on electoral bonds recognized the threat to democracy and transparency in political funding
  • Found entire Electoral Bond Scheme unconstitutional, violating voters’ right to information
  • Also deemed amendment to Companies Act, removing cap on company donations without disclosure, as manifestly arbitrary
  • Mandated disclosure of donation details since 2019
  • Verdict aligns with previous judgments promoting voter rights and election integrity
  • Court’s reasoning based on proportionality and connection between anonymous corporate donations and policy decisions
  • Extends principle of voters’ freedom of expression to include access to information on corporate donors
  • Raises questions about validity of scheme and impact on policy decisions and campaign funding
  • Calls for interim stay on scheme issuance to prevent potential misuse of funds
Strongman at the helm: Page 10
  • Defence Minister Prabowo Subianto likely to win Indonesia’s presidential election with over 57% of votes.
  • Expected to continue policies of predecessor Joko Widodo, including non-alignment and building new capital city.
  • Early trends suggest support from younger voters, influenced by social media image makeover.
  • Subianto’s political career transformed from rival to trusted aide and Defence Minister.
  • Persistence of populist leadership reminiscent of Suharto era hindering Indonesia’s democratic progress.
  • Subianto known for populist policies, support for Islamist extremists, and denigration of minorities.
  • Criticism of nepotism, evident in appointment of Widodo’s son as running mate despite age threshold.
  • Indonesia’s strategic importance and potential for economic progress at risk if succumbs to populist nativism led by authoritarian rulers.
An intervention that will help strengthen legal education: Page 10
  • Parliamentary Standing Committee submits report on legal education with significant recommendations
  • National law universities (NLUs) introduced in the 1990s to improve legal education
  • Despite NLUs, many law schools in India lack excellence in legal research
  • Committee suggests limiting Bar Council of India’s (BCI) role in regulating legal education
  • Proposal to establish National Council for Legal Education and Research (NCLER) for regulating post-graduation level education
  • Emphasis on promoting research in legal education to develop critical thinking among students
  • Need for state funding and recruitment of top researchers to bolster research ecosystem in law schools
  • Recommendations to globalize legal education through curriculum, exchange programs, and exposure to different legal systems
  • Leadership in law faculties should inspire and support younger academicians
  • Complete academic freedom and autonomy necessary to boost culture of legal research
  • Stakeholders urged to collaborate for improving quality of legal education in India
What is behind Ladakh’s unrest?: Page 12
  • Ladakhis demand full Statehood and inclusion in the Sixth Schedule for protection of land, culture, language, and environment.
  • Resentment grew after Ladakh became a separate UT following the abrogation of Article 370 in August 2019.
  • Initial support for UT status turned to caution and anger due to concerns about loss of identity, resources, and bureaucratic overreach.
  • LAB and KDA led protests demanding constitutional safeguards, full-fledged legislature, separate Lok Sabha seats, and job reservations for locals.
  • Concerns about demographic changes and environmental impact due to industrialization led to protests.
  • LAB and KDA demand extension of Ladakh’s territorial control up to Gilgit-Baltistan and reservation of seats for the area.
  • Lack of job opportunities and political representation fueled the unrest.
  • Union Minister of State for Home Affairs scheduled to meet representatives from Ladakh on February 19 in New Delhi.
Why did Kosovo face delays in Schengen approval?: Page 12
  • Kosovo faced delays in Schengen approval due to strong opposition from several EU members who do not recognize its unilateral declaration of independence from Serbia in 2008.
  • The European Commission cleared Pristina’s preparedness for Schengen entry in 2018, focusing on tackling illegal migration and corruption.
  • Admission to Schengen is not mandatory for EU members; however, 23 of the 27 EU states are part of the passport-free area.
  • The Schengen area comprises 27 countries, including four non-EU members: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, and Norway.
  • Schengen faced strain during the Eurozone sovereign debt crisis, migrant arrivals, and anti-immigrant politics.
  • The EU attempted to balance asylum protection under the Dublin Regulation while maintaining Schengen’s integrity.
  • Advantages of the EU’s border-free policy include freedom to travel with a single Schengen visa and symbolizing European integration.
Global meet urges India to augment pulses production to meet nutritional needs: Page 16
  • Global Pulses Conference urges India to increase pulses production
  • Ministers Arjun Munda and Piyush Goyal emphasize the need for improving pulses cultivation
  • Conference jointly organized by NAFED and GPC
  • Pulses production increased by 60% from 2014 to 2024
  • Goyal highlights government’s measures to support pulses cultivation, including increasing MSP regularly
  • MSP set at 50% over actual cost of production, leading to attractive returns for farmers
  • Significant increases in MSP for various pulses compared to a decade ago
  • India self-reliant in chickpeas, efforts ongoing to achieve self-sufficiency in other pulses by 2027
  • Focus on increasing cultivation of tur and black gram
  • GPC president mentions benefits of sharing best practices and technological advancements from other countries
New drug to treat chronic kidney disease gets approval: Page 16
  • CDSCO approves Jardiance (empagliflozin) 10mg tablets for chronic kidney disease (CKD) treatment
  • Approved to reduce risk of sustained decline in patients with end-stage kidney disease, cardiovascular death, and hospitalization in adults with CKD at risk of progression
  • Nephrologists and cardiologists can use Jardiance for CKD treatment in eligible patients
  • Not recommended for CKD treatment in patients with polycystic kidney disease
  • Boehringer Ingelheim (India) manufactures Jardiance
  • Gagandeep Singh Bedi, managing director of Boehringer Ingelheim (India), expresses excitement about the approval and potential of empagliflozin
January trade deficit narrows to 9-month low of $17.5 billion: Page 17
  • January trade deficit reduces to 9-month low of $17.5 billion
  • Exports increase by 3.1%, reaching $36.92 billion, slightly lower than December’s figures
  • Imports grow by 3% to $54.4 billion, 6.6% lower than the previous month
  • Services exports estimated to rise by 17.5% to $32.8 billion
  • Total exports in January amount to $69.72 billion, marking a 9.28% increase compared to the previous year
  • Despite challenges such as the Red Sea crisis and weak demand in advanced nations, exports show resilience
  • Ministry of Commerce and Industry takes measures to support exporters, including facilitating credit extension and addressing non-tariff barriers
  • Efforts underway to identify new export markets and products with global demand
  • Cumulative merchandise exports for the first 10 months of 2023-24 stand at $353.9 billion, down 4.9% from the same period last year
  • Merchandise trade deficit during April-January 2023-24 declines by 9.66% compared to the previous year
  • Positive growth in export sectors like iron ore, tobacco, meat, dairy, poultry products, and spices
  • Decline in import sectors including fertilizers, project goods, and raw cotton
India, Nepal sign pact to link UPI, NPI for faster remittances: Page 17
  • RBI and Nepal Rastra Bank sign Terms of Reference (ToR) for integrating fast payment systems
  • Integration aims to link India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and Nepal’s National Payments Interface (NPI)
  • Goal is to facilitate faster and cheaper cross-border remittances between India and Nepal
  • Collaboration expected to deepen financial connectivity and strengthen historical, cultural, and economic ties between the two countries
  • Necessary systems will be implemented based on the exchanged ToR to establish the UPI-NPI linkage
  • Formal introduction of the linkage and commencement of operations to follow shortly

Source: The Hindu Epaper

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