Important Current Affairs for CLAT-17th september 2022

India Stands 4th in Global Crypto Adoption Index 2022

Blockchain analysis platform Chainalysis published its global crypto adoption index for 2022 of nations with the highest cryptocurrency adoption rate with India ranking fourth in the list, two spots down from last year. Chainalysis report noted that the emerging markets dominate the Global Crypto Adoption Index this year.

What The Report Said:

The report noted, “Out of our top 20 ranked countries, 10 are lower-middle income: Vietnam, Philippines, Ukraine, India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Morocco, Nepal, Kenya, and Indonesia. Eight are upper-middle income: Brazil, Thailand, Russia, China, Turkey, Argentina, Colombia, and Ecuador.”

Countries Performance:

On the index, India ranks above the US, UK and Russia suggesting that the country’s crypto community is not far behind in pushing for further use of the technology. The Philippines and Ukraine have taken the second and third rankings, respectively, showing a significant preference for crypto adoption in the near future. The global index is led by Vietnam for the second consecutive year, emerging as the country that is most eager to embrace cryptocurrency adoption. After landing thirteenth on the ranking in 2021, China reentered the top ten this year. This is very intriguing given the Chinese government’s crackdown on cryptocurrency activities since last year.

India’s Concern:

The rate of cryptocurrency adoption worldwide peaked in Q2 of 2021. Since then, adoption has fluctuated in waves, but it’s crucial that it is still far higher than it was in the 2019 bull market, the report emphasized. The Indian government still hasn’t laid out a proper regulatory framework for the cryptocurrency industry except for the 30% crypto tax which came into effect on July 1 of this year. Last month, the RBI governor Shaktikanta Das warned Indian citizens against the perils of crypto saying “cryptos may lead to dollarization of the developing countries like India as the prices of crypto tokens are mostly denominated in dollars.”

India To Be Home to Cheetahs After 70 Years

Eight African cheetahs are all set to move from Namibia into their new habitat at the Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh, September 17, on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s birthday. The PM is expected to release the five female and three male cheetahs into the Park’s quarantine enclosures on Friday as part of his efforts to revitalise and diversify the country’s wildlife and habitat, his office has said.

The Cheetah:

The last cheetah in India died in 1947 in Korea district in present day Chhattisgarh, which was earlier part of Madhya Pradesh, and the species was declared extinct from India in 1952. According to reports, the cheetah has lost 90 percent of its global habitat in the last 100 years. In addition, in many of the 31 populations of the cheetah, only 100-200 are left with their habitat consistently deteriorating. The ‘African Cheetah Introduction Project in India‘ was conceived in 2009, with a plan to introduce the big cat by November last year in Kuno National Park, but it suffered a setback due to the COVID-19 pandemic. How Will the Cheetahs be Brought to India: The cheetahs will board a customised Boeing 747-400 aircraft from Namibia’s capital Windhoek and arrive in Gwalior after completing an overnight journey lasting 10 hours and traversing 8,000 kilometres. The felines will then be shifted from Gwalior to Kuno National Park (KNP) in an Indian Air Force (IAF) Chinook heavy-lift helicopter. The cheetahs, aged between four and six years, will not be tranquilised for the journey. They will be fed two-three days before the journey and will be accompanied in the aircraft by three veterinarians. The aircraft bringing the animals has been sourced from a UAE-based aircraft company by Action Aviation. It carries the image of a tiger on its nose. Why is it Significant: Dr Laurie Marker, who has been an advisor to the Indian government on the cheetah relocation project for over 12 years told that this is the first time that a trans-continental project like this is taking off. The cheetah has gone extinct in several countries due to human activity, so it is our responsibility to ensure that it is brought back and preserved. Of course, the ideal situation would be to conserve animals because re-introduction is a difficult and long process. But once an animal becomes extinct, this is the only way,” Dr Marker added. Challenges: Studies have shown that leopards have preyed on cheetahs in Africa, and similar fears are being expressed for Kuno as well, where around 50 leopards are housed around the same area. According to experts, cheetah is a very delicate animal, they avoid conflict but remain in the target of competing animals. In Kuno, cheetah cubs can be at great risk from leopards, hyenas, wolves, bears, and wild dogs. In 2013, a research on cheetahs found in Africa’s Kgalagadi Park showed that their cubs have only 36 percent chance of survival. Predatory animals are the main reason behind the death of their cubs.

India’s First Forest University to be Established in Telangana

The first Forest University in India

India is going to have its first Forest University. The Forestry Universities (UoF) Act 2022 was approved by the Telangana Assembly. The University of Forestry (UoF), will be the first of its kind in India. Globally, it will be the third University of Forestry after Russia and China. The Telangana government has decided to expand the Forestry College and Research Institute (FCRI) in Hyderabad. The FCRI will be turned into a full-fledged University.

When FCRI gets upgraded into a university, additional 18 programs including Ph.D., Diploma, and certificate courses in Urban Forestry, nursery management, agro-forestry, tribal livelihood enhancement, forest entrepreneurship, climate-smart forestry, and forest park management are planned to be launched.

First Forest University in India: Aims

  • The University will also network and partner with similar institutions to create synergies in learning.

  • The University will promote action research by providing comprehensive training to farmers.

  • The objectives of the University will be to produce quality forestry professionals for conservation and sustainable management of forest resources and to promote research and develop appropriate methods for propagation of plantation crops to meet the demand of industries.

  • The University will also work to develop agro-forestry models suitable for various agroecological conditions in addition to traditional forestry operations to reduce pressure on natural forests, and economic upliftment of farming communities.

  • Telangana Government has planted 268.83 crore saplings under the flagship program ‘Telangana Ku Haritha Haram”.

Eastern Economic Forum And India’s Act Of Balancing

On September 8, Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually addressed Russia’s Eastern Economic Forum 2022 held in Vladivostok. With the outbreak of the Ukraine war participation and attendance at this forum is significant messaging. While Russian President Vladimir Putin was of course in attendance, along with him were Armenian PM Nikol Pashinyan, Mongolia PM Luvsannamsrain Oyun-Erdene, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Myanmar Min Aung Hlain, Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress of China Li Zhanshu, while Malaysian Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yacob and Vietnam PM Pham Minh Tinh participated virtually.

What The PM Said:

Modi spoke at length about connectivity, the Chennai-Vladivostok Maritime Corridor, the Northern Sea Route, Indian investments in the Far East, potential of Russian participation in India’s steel industry, but most of all about firming up Indian participation in Russia’s Far Eastern region. Modi, who had participated in the EEF in 2019 as guest of honour, had announced India’s Act Far East policy then. This, he reminded in his virtual address, had become “a key pillar of the ‘Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership of India and Russia”.


India’s Balancing Act:

A few days before that India had participated in the Vostok 2022 military games in Russia, in which some 50,000 soldiers, 140 airplanes and 60 naval ships are thought to be participating, across Siberia, the Far Eastern Federal District, the Sea of Okhotsk and the Sea of Japan. Nine countries including India, China, Mongolia, Algeria, Syria, Nicaragua, and a host of CIS countries, participated in the drills along with observers from 31 countries. The drills like the EEC were meant to send a message that in spite of the war in Russia it was business as usual and that Russia had its allies together.

The US had expressed concern about India’s participation in the games. “The United States has concerns about any country exercising with Russia – while Russia wages an unprovoked brutal war against Ukraine. But of course, every participating country will make its own decision,” US Press Secretary Jean Pierre said.

This of course is not the first time that the US has voiced opposition to India’s position on the Ukraine crisis. India has resolutely refused to condemn Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine, instead calling repeatedly for a ceasefire and talks between the two warring parties. India also has continued to buy Russian oil and coal at heavily discounted prices, something it sees in its national interest given the spiking energy prices and its huge dependence on energy. While India had acquiesced with US wishes earlier regarding cessation of oil purchases from Iran and Venezuela, it can hardly be faulted this time around. For context, European and NATO countries continue to purchase Russian fuel supplies even after those very countries have slapped harsh sanctions on Russia.

How Others Has Reacted:

Japan, another key US ally, while condemning the war in Ukraine and even supporting the sanctions against Russia has not withdrawn its investments from Sakhalin 1 and 2 projects, and continues its energy imports from Russia. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida stated that Sakhalin-1 and Sakhalin-2 contribute to the stable supply of energy at a low cost over the long term, and that there is no change in Japan’s policy on maintaining its concessions and interests.

Seen in conjunction with India’s recent participation in the Vostok 2022 military games in Russia, this is Modi’s bold move, an announcement of India’s strategic autonomy and that it was not going to be dictated to; India would act in a manner in which it suited its national interest most.

This has been India’s steadfast policy since the outbreak of the Ukraine crisis. And not without reason. Not only does India have a special and privileged partnership with Russia, ties span almost all fields, and have been consistent with rarely any hiccup. New areas for partnerships are opening up like developing Russia’s resource rich but sparsely populated Far Eastern region, and the Arctic. Defence collaboration has never been better, with plans of expanding the partnership to third countries.

The U.S. Posturing:

The US has also of course come around to recognizing this fact; Russia is India’s largest defence supplier and India needs this cooperation to counter Pakistan and China as alternatives are more expensive. India’s purchase of the Russian made S-400 Triumf missile system, for instance, has not invited any sanctions under the CAATSA, unlike Turkey’s similar purchase.

India, however, continues to mount a balancing act. Last month it conducted military exercises with the US in Himachal Pradesh close to the China border “Ex Vajra Prahar 2022”. Soon after though it participated in the Vostok military drills in Russia, India did not participate in the naval exercises so as not to roil Japan.

In April, Minister for External Affairs S. Jaishankar and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh participated in the fourth round of India-US 2+2 dialogue together with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin in Washington. While both Jaishankar and Singh wrapped up a meeting in the similar 2+2 format with their Japanese counterparts.

India’s Concern:

While Modi addressed the EEC virtually, he participated in an in-person summit with the QUAD leaders in Tokyo in May this year, where along with multilateral he also had bilateral meetings with all the three QUAD leaders – Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, and US President Joe Biden. This week he will be participating in person in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Samarkand where he will be meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin. Chinese President Xi Jinping will also be present in the meeting.

Yet, while berating India for its ongoing engagement with Russia, the US itself has just abandoned its principle and announced USD 450 million for Pakistan’s F16 fleet sustainment program for “counter-terrorism” operations, a reversal of the decision of former President Donald Trump’s administration. This, along with the approval of the IMF to bail out Pakistan by disbursing $1.1 bln bail out loan, could be the pat for allowing its territory to “eliminate” Al Qaeda boss Ayman Zawahiri. This could also be subtle messaging to India, but one that can harden India’s resolve to deepen its partnership with Russia.

All About Eastern Economic Forum(EEF):

The Eastern Economic Forum was developed in 2015 by Vladimir Putin, the Russian President with its headquarter in the city Vladivostok of the country Russia. It is held at Far Eastern Federal University in Russia with the government of Russia (Roscongress Foundation) as its organiser. The prime minister of Japan as well as the president of Russia attended the session every year.

It helps in supporting the development of the economy of the Russia Far East as well as to enlarge international cooperation in the regions of Asia Pacific. It is the platform where the discussion of world issues like regional integration, country’s global challenges, development of technology as well as industries and economy.

Eastern Economic Forum 2021 theme (the 6th Eastern Economic Forum) is New Opportunities for the Far East in a changing world which was organised on 2 September, 2021 to 4 September, 2021 and it also includes programs like EEF Junior, Youth EEF as well as Far East Street. This mainly highlighted the significance of interactions between business and the state during the COVID-19 pandemic.

6th Eastern Economic Forum:

Eastern Economic Forum 2021 is the 6th Eastern Economic Forum which aims to establish the relationship between the business and the states during the COVID-19 pandemic throughout the world. Russia under this 6th forum wants development in the regions of the Russian Far East.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi highlighted his ideas of strengthening the Indo-Russia relations in the single phrase, “Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership”. He also emphasises his thoughts by reiterating the phrase “Act East Policy”. The Prime Minister of India also emphasises on the sectors of pharma as well as health ones and also on the cooperation of the economy like steel, diamond, timber and many more.

Jharkhand becomes the 3rd state to have Food Security Atlas

Jharkhand has become the third state after Bihar and Odisha in eastern India to have Food Security Atlas for its rural areas. Odisha and Bihar had their Atlas launched in 2018. Food Security Atlas of Rural Jharkhand 2022’ launched in Ranchi. Finance Minister of Jharkhand, Dr Rameshwar Oraon assured that the government would make efforts towards giving quota and green cards to the food insecure districts of Jharkhand.

key points of the Atlas:

  • This Atlas is an effort toward mapping the food security situation in the state. It has been prepared by the Delhi-based Institute for Human Development (IHD) as part of the research initiative of the Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai.`

  • This document will play an important role in informing policy. Given the poor monsoon this year there is a drought-like situation in many districts of the state. Hence, the availability of food is an issue due to the low extent of irrigation and ensuring food security is an even bigger issue wherein 75 per cent of the people need attention whose hunger needs to be eradicated.

Some of the key suggestions:

  • The food atlas are that 14 out of 24 districts are priority districts and the entire belt of Santhal Pargana region has been marked as alarming in terms of food insecurity. The Atlas suggests that special emphasis needs to be given in terms of overall food security. The Food Atlas suggests that districts with high multidimensional poverty also are highly insecure districts in terms of overall food security and also have very poor food security outcomes.

  • It also mentions that the state has high instability in food grain production. Also crop diversification is very less in Jharkhand and is mainly a single cropped area. Better irrigation facility is a needed policy to stabilise agricultural production through cropping intensity as well as overall food security

  • It calls for steps to reduce the impact of rainfall variability and suggests rain harvesting for the priority districts. Construction of dam, renovation of ponds can be initiated on a large scale under MGNREGA and Integrated Watershed programmes.

  • It also suggests diversification of crops, improve access to food: expanding employment opportunities in non-farm sector, increasing casual wage rate, higher involvement of rural population in processing non-timber forest product, expanding job under MGNREGA, promotion of Millets (distribution of millets through the Public Distribution System).

Andhra Pradesh, Odisha Attract Maximum Industrial Investment In 2022

Andhra Pradesh has ranked one on the list of states in attracting industrial investments in the first seven months of 2022. According to the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), Andhra Pradesh has generated an investment of Rs 40,361 crore. Andhra Pradesh stood at 45 percent of the total investment that the entire country got from January to July 2022. India got a total investment of Rs 1,71,285 crore by the end of July as per the DPIIT data.

Andhra Pradesh rolled out its new ‘industrial Development Policy 2022-2023’ which focuses on a sustainable development model of growth, Infrastructure development, and asset creation. The Industrial Development Policy 2020-2023 aims to improve the ease of doing business and incentivize high-value additional industrial investments. In July 2022, Karnataka generated an investment of Rs 3712 crore, Gujarat generated an investment of Rs 2969 crore, and Odisha generated an investment of Rs 1493 crore.

Kyrgyzstan Reports Heavy Fighting With Tajikistan

Kyrgyzstan reported “intense battles” with Central Asian neighbour Tajikistan and said 24 people had been killed in the latest outbreak of violence to hit the former Soviet Union. Both of the small impoverished landlocked nations have accused each other of restarting fighting in a disputed area, despite a ceasefire deal. In a statement, the Kyrgyz border service said its forces were continuing to repel Tajik attacks.

What The Both Sides Said:

“From the Tajik side, shelling of the positions of the Kyrgyz side continues, and in some areas intense battles are going on,” it said. The Kyrgyz health ministry later said 24 citizens had been killed and 87 wounded, Russia’s Interfax news agency said. It did not say how many of the victims were from the military. Kamchybek Tashiev, the head of the Kyrgyz state committee on national security, was quoted by Russia’s RIA news agency as saying military casualties had been high.

“The situation is difficult and as for what will happen tomorrow – no one can give any guarantees,” he said. The Kyrgyz ministry of emergency situations said more than 136,000 civilians had been evacuated from the conflict zone, Interfax said. Earlier in the day Kyrgyz President Sadyr Japarov and his Tajik counterpart Emomali Rakhmon agreed to order a ceasefire and troop pullback at a regional summit in Uzbekistan, Japarov’s office said.

What Is The issue:

Kyrgyzstan reported fighting in its southern Batken province which borders Tajikistan’s northern Sughd region and features a Tajik exclave, Vorukh. The same area is famous for its jigsaw-puzzle political and ethnic geography and became the site of similar hostilities last year, also nearly leading to a war. Clashes over the poorly demarcated border are frequent, but usually de-escalate quickly.

SOVIET LEGACY:

Central Asian border issues largely stem from the Soviet era when Moscow tried to divide the region between groups whose settlements were often located amidst those of other ethnicities. Both countries host Russian military bases. Moscow urged a cessation of hostilities.

Eurasian Tensions:

The clashes come at a time when Russian troops are fighting in Ukraine and a new ceasefire appears to be holding between former Soviet states Armenia and Azerbaijan. Kyrgyzstan has said that Tajik forces using tanks, armoured personnel carriers and mortars entered at least one Kyrgyz village and shelled the airport of the Kyrgyz town of Batken and adjacent areas.

In turn, Tajikistan accused Kyrgyz forces of shelling an outpost and seven villages with “heavy weaponry”. Temur Umarov, a fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said the remote villages at the centre of the dispute were not economically significant, but that both sides had given it an exaggerated political importance. Umarov said both governments had come to rely on what he called “populist, nationalist rhetoric” that made an exchange of territory aimed at ending the conflict impossible. Another Central Asia analyst, Alexander Knyazev, said the sides showed no will to resolve the conflict peacefully and the mutual territorial claims provoked aggressive attitudes on all levels. He said only third-party peacekeepers could prevent further conflicts by establishing a demilitarised zone.


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