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Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967

Paper: General Studies 3

Topic: Role of External State and Non-state Actors in creating challenges to Internal Security

Why in News?

  • The Central Government has decided to declare the following individuals as terrorists and add their names to Schedule 4 of the Act:
    • Maulana Masood Azhar : chief, founder and key leader of Jaish-e-Mohammad
    • Hafiz Muhammad: chief, founder and key leader of Lashkar-e-Taiba/Jamat-ud-Dawa
    • Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi: chief operation commander of Lashkar-e-Taiba and one of its founder members
    • Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar: runs an international underworld crime syndicate and is involved in perpetrating acts of terror

UAPA 1967:

  • An Act to provide for the more effective prevention of certain unlawful activities of individuals and associations and for matters connected therewith
  • Recently amended in 2019

UAPA 2019 Amendments:

  • Empowers the government to designate individuals as terrorists, earlier only organizations could be designated
  • If the investigation is conducted by an officer of the National Investigation Agency (NIA), the approval of the Director General of NIA would be required for seizure of such property; instead of the Director General of Police
  • Allows NIA officers above or of the rank of Inspector to investigate cases
  • Adds International Convention for Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism (2005) under the schedule of treaties

External Benchmark based Lending rate

Paper: General Studies 3

Topic: Mobilization of Resources

Why in News?

  • The Reserve Bank of India on  asked banks to link all new floating-rate loans for housing, personal and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to specified external benchmarks, including repo

What is EBLR?

  • Under this regime the lending rates of banks would be calculated based on a spread above an external benchmark lending rate
  • The external benchmark can be one of the following:
    • Repo rate
    • 3 month treasury-bill yield
    • 6 month treasury-bill yield
    • Any other benchmark interest rate published by Financial Benchmarks India Pvt. Ltd
  • The interest rate under external benchmark shall be reset at least once every three months
  • The spread, including operating costs can be altered once every three years – to limit spread manipulation

Why EBLR?

  • The present system of MCLR was instituted by RBI in 2016 aimed to improve transmission of policy rates to bank’s lending rates
  • However, policy transmission was still not upto the mark, as out of 110 basis points cut by RBI, on average only 29 basis points has been transmitted to customers
  • EBLR system would further improve policy rate transmission in the economy
  • The reducing lending rates would work to revive the savings-investment cycle

Poshan Maah

Paper: General Studies 2

Topic: Issues relating to Poverty and Hunger; Issues Relating to Development and Management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources

Why in News?

  • Under POSHAN Abhiyaan, this September is being celebrated as the Poshan Maah across country to address the malnutritional challenges
  • Rastriya Poshan Maah or National Nutrition Month is being launched across the country
  • Nodal Ministry: Ministry of Women and Child Development

What is Poshan Maah?

  • Under Poshan Maahs, activities focussing on antenatal care, anaemia, growth monitoring, girls’ education, diet, right age of marriage, hygiene and sanitation, eat healthy as themes are being showcased in the form of food melas, rallies, school level campaigns, anaemia test camps, recipe demonstrations, radio & TV talk shows and seminars all across the country
  • This year Poshan Maah focuses on five critical components, called “pancha sutras”
    • First 1000 days of the Child
    • Anaemia
    • Diarrhoea,
    • Hand Wash & Sanitation
    • Poshtik Aahar (wholesome meal with diet diversity)

POSHAN Abhiyaan/ National Nutrition Mission

  • Poshan Abhiyaan is India’s flagship programme to improve nutritional outcomes for children, adolescents, pregnant women, and lactating mothers by leveraging technology, a targeted approach and convergence
  • The mission will ensure convergence with various programmes i.e., Anganwadi Services, Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY), Scheme for Adolescent Girls (SAG) of MWCD Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY), National Health Mission (NHM), Swachh-Bharat Mission, Public Distribution System (PDS), Department Food & Public Distribution, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) and Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation
  • The programme through the targets will strive to reduce the level of stunting, under-nutrition, anemia and low birth weight babies
  • NNM targets to reduce stunting, under- nutrition, anemia (among young children, women and adolescent girls) and reduce low birth weight by 2%, 2%, 3% and 2% per annum respectively. Although the target to reduce Stunting is atleast 2% p.a., Mission would strive to achieve reduction in Stunting from 38.4% (NFHS-4) to 25% by 2022 (Mission 25 by 2022)

Prelims specific

  • Global Liveability Index:
    • Published Yearly by Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU)
    • Vienna topped again in 2019, followed by Melbourne, Sydney, Osaka and Calgary
    • New Delhi and Mumbai are the only two cities in the rankings with rank 118 and 119 respectively, out of the 140 ranked countries