Steps towards refreshed green revolution
- November 26, 2021 was celebrated in Anand, Gujarat as the 100th birth anniversary of Verghese Kurien, the leader of India’s ‘white revolution’, which increased the incomes and the wealth of millions of cattle-owning small farmers in India, many of them women.
- The purpose of the green revolution was to increase the output of agriculture to prevent shortages of food.
- The purpose of the white revolution was to increase the incomes of small farmers in Gujarat, not the output of milk.
- The green revolution was largely a technocratic enterprise driven by science and the principles of efficiency.
- Whereas, the white revolution was a socio-economic enterprise driven by political leaders and principles of equity.
- Amul has become one of India’s most loved brands, and is respected internationally too for the quality of its products and the efficiency of its management.
- It has successfully competed with the world’s largest corporations and their well-established brands.
- The green revolution’s aim was to increase outputs by applying scientific breakthroughs with methods of management to obtain economies through scale.
- It required inputs, like chemical fertilizers, to be produced on scale and at low cost.
- Therefore, large fertilizer factories were set up for the green revolution. And large dams and irrigation systems were also required to feed water on a large scale. Mono-cropping on fields was necessary to apply all appropriate inputs seeds, fertilizer, water, etc, on scale.
- Focus on only one or two crops at a time enabled their outputs to be increased by avoiding diversion of land use to other “non-essential” crops. Monocropping increased the efficiency in application of inputs.
- The need for new solutions to increase farmers’ incomes has become imperative.
- Moreover, fundamental changes in economics and management sciences are necessary to reverse the degradation of the planet’s natural environment that has taken place with the application of modern technological solutions and management methods for the pursuit of economic growth.
- Inclusion and equity in governance must be hardwired into the design of the enterprise.
- The ‘social’ side of the enterprise is as important as its ‘business’ side. Therefore, new metrics of performance must be used, and many ‘non-corporate’ methods of management learned and applied to strengthen its social fabric.
- Solutions must be ‘local systems’ solutions, rather than ‘global (or national) scale’.
- science must be practical and useable by the people on the ground rather than a science developed by experts to convince other experts
- Sustainable transformations are brought about by a steady process of evolution, not by drastic revolution.
Beijing model to control air pollution
- Air pollution in cities is driven by urban form and transport infrastructure; solutions depend on the stage of development.
- Urban transformation is a social process (people, services, lifestyles) rather than a physical problem (congestion, technology, regulation)
- Lessons from Beijing
- The UN Environment Programmer’s review of Beijing’s control of air pollution provides useful lessons for policymakers.
- The population size of both cities, Beijing and Delhi, is comparable. Delhi also shares with Beijing, and other cities, the three stages in dealing with urban air pollution as a long-term task.
- It starts with end of-pipe air pollution control gradually moving to integrated measures targeting primary pollutants (SO2, NO2, PM10, and CO), with the
- Government playing the main role.
- Later, secondary pollutants, or particulate matter leading to smog, primarily PM2.5, become the main focus for control with a regional coordination mechanism.
- First, the key result area is a new model of network operation and quality control to provide early warning to effectively reduce the level of pollution under adverse weather conditions.
- The technical system combines high-resolution satellite remote sensing and laser radar, an integrated network combining ‘airland’ data for quality monitoring with greater analytical capacity.
- Second, in Beijing what really made a difference was not shutting down polluting units, restricting car ownership and travel, and improved fuel standards but the approach to urbanization.
- ‘Smart cities’ such as New York, London and Beijing provide more space for public transport and mixed land use spatial planning minimizing travel.
- Beijing plans to have 48 lakh charging points by 2022 to push the use of electric vehicles.
- Local regulation targeted controlling both the concentration and total emission amount leading to transforming and upgrading the industrial structure production processes and equipment.
- Independent evaluations review the air quality management system, conduct quantitative assessments of the pollution reduction effects in selected areas, analyze new challenges, and provide recommendations for enabling further improvement in air quality and building public support.
- Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART): The Bill defines ART to include all techniques that seek to obtain a pregnancy by handling the sperm or the oocyte (immature egg cell) outside the human body and transferring the gamete or the embryo into the reproductive system of a woman.
- Examples of ART services include gamete (sperm or oocyte) donation, in-vitro-fertilizations (fertilizing an egg in the lab), and gestational surrogacy (the child is not biologically related to surrogate mother). ART services will be provided through:
- ART clinics, which offer ART related treatments and procedures, and
- ART banks, which store and supply gametes.
- Regulation of ART clinics and banks: The Bill provides that every ART clinic and bank must be registered under the National Registry of Banks and Clinics of India.
- The National Registry will be established under the Bill and will act as a central database with details of all ART clinics and banks in the country.
- State governments will appoint registration authorities for facilitating the registration process.
- Conditions for gamete donation and supply: Screening of gamete donors, collection and storage of semen, and provision of oocyte donor can only be done by a registered ART bank.
- A bank can obtain semen from males between 21 and 55 years of age, and oocytes from females between 23 and 35 years of age.
- An oocyte donor should be an ever-married woman having at least one alive child of her own (minimum three years of age).
- The woman can donate oocyte only once in her life and not more than seven oocytes can be retrieved from her.
- A bank cannot supply gamete of a single donor to more than one commissioning couple (couple seeking services).
- Conditions for offering ART services: ART procedures can only be carried out with the written informed consent of both the party seeking ART services as well as the donor.
- The party seeking ART services will be required to provide insurance coverage in the favour of the oocyte donor (for any loss, damage, or death of the donor).
- A clinic is prohibited from offering to provide a child of pre-determined sex.
- The Bill also requires checking for genetic diseases before the embryo implantation.
- Rights of a child born through ART: A child born through ART will be deemed to be a biological child of the commissioning couple and will be entitled to the rights and privileges available to a natural child of the commissioning couple.
- National and State Boards: The Bill provides that the National and State Boards for Surrogacy constituted under the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2019 will act as the National and State Board respectively for the regulation of ART services.
- Any clinic or bank advertising or offering sex-selective ART will be punishable with imprisonment between five and ten years, or fine between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 25 lakh, or both.
- Bill, so progressive by its very nature, would glaringly exclude members of the LGBTQIA+ community and single men.
- As citizens, these groups too have the right to exercise reproductive rights.
Four pillars strategy of Sri Lanka
- India and Sri Lanka agreed to a four-pronged approach to discuss initiatives on food and energy security to help mitigate Sri Lanka’s economic crisis.
- Four-pillar initiative, comprising–
- Lines of credit for food, medicines and fuel purchases granted by India,
- A currency swap agreement to deal with Sri lanka’s balance of payment issues,
- An “early” modernization project of the Trinco oil farms that India has been pursuing for several years,
- And a Sri Lankan commitment to facilitate Indian investments in various sectors.
- It was an armed rebellion that took place in Odisha against the British East India Company.
- Paikas were the traditional landed militia of the Gajapati rulers of Odisha.
- Paikas owned rent-free land that had been given to them for their military service to Kingdom of Khurda.
- The British, having established their sway over Bengal Province and Madras Province to the north and south of Odisha, occupied it in 1803.
- Colonial rule brought new land revenue settlements in the region which led to the Paikas losing their estates and land was transferred to Bengali absentee landlords.
- The uprising is said to be an expression against the disruption of traditional way of life of the region due to advent of British. • It was directly against the colonial masters and due to the large-scale participation of all the section of the society.
Steps to protect women online
- Meta, formerly Facebook, announced initiatives in India to ensure women’s safety on the platform, including measures to combat the spread of nonconsensual intimate images and the introduction of a ‘Women’s Safety Hub’ in Indian regional languages.
- Meta announced the rollout of StopNCII.org, which is available globally, to combat the spread of non-consensual intimate images (NCII).
- “In partnership with U.K. Revenge Porn Helpline, StopNCII.org builds on Meta’s NCII Pilot, an emergency programme that allows potential victims to proactively hash their intimate images so they can’t be proliferated on its platform.