Current Affairs (22nd July 2021)
97th Amendment Act, 2011
- Recently, the apex court, Supreme Court of India struck down the certain provisions of the 97th Constitutional Amendment Act, 2011 and also upheld the Gujarat High Court’s 2013 ruling.
- 97th Constitutional Amendment Act, 2011 introduced Part IX B that dictated the terms for running co-operative societies.
- The provisions in the Amendment passed by the Parliament, but it also requires ratification by atleast ½ of the state legislature according to Article 368(2).
- This kind of ratification was not done in this case hence, it was liable to be struck down.
- It is declared that Part IXB is operative only insofar as it concerns multi-State cooperative societies both within the various States and in the Union Territories.
- It did not strike down the portions of Part IX B of the Amendment concerning ‘Multi State Co-operative Societies (MSCS)’ due to the lack of ratification.
Stand of SC:
- Indian Constitution is quasi-federal as far as powers of legislature are concerned.
- There is a tilt in favour of the Centre vis-à-vis the States given the federal supremacy
- States, within their own sphere, have exclusive power to legislate on topics reserved exclusively to them.
- Part IX B,which includes Articles 243ZH to 243ZT, has “significantly and substantially impacted” State legislatures’ “exclusive legislative power” over its co-operative sector under Entry 32 of the State List.
- The court pointed out how Article 243ZI makes it clear that a State may only make law on the incorporation, regulation and winding up of a society subject to the provisions of Part IX B of the 97th
- Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has framed the SMILE scheme (Support for Marginalized Individuals for Livelihood and Enterprise scheme).
- This Scheme includes a sub scheme – ‘Central Sector Scheme for Comprehensive Rehabilitation of persons engaged in the act of Begging’.
- This Scheme covers several comprehensive measures including welfare measures for persons who are engaged in the act of begging.
- The focus of the scheme is extensively on rehabilitation, provision of medical facilities, counselling, basic documentation, education, skill development, economic linkages and so on.
- Implementation – The scheme would be implemented with the support of State/UT Governments/Local Urban Bodies, Voluntary Organizations, Community Based Organizations (CBOs) and others.
- Shelter Homes – Scheme provides for the use of the existing shelter homes available with the State/UT Governments and Urban local bodies for rehabilitation of the persons engaged in the act of Begging.
- In case of non-availability of existing shelter homes, new dedicated shelter homes are to be set up by the implementing agencies.
- Pilot projects are initiated on Comprehensive Rehabilitation of Persons engaged in the act of Begging in ten cities.
- The ten cities are Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Indore, Lucknow, Mumbai, Nagpur, Patna, and Ahmadabad.
- Billionaire Jeff Bezos has made a short journey to space, in the first crewed flight of his rocket ship, New Shepard.
- New Shepard, built by Bezos’ company Blue Origin, is designed to serve the burgeoning market for space tourism.
- The spacecraft lifted off from a private launch site near Van Horn, Texas. The capsule reached a maximum altitude of around 107km before starting its descent, parachuting down to a soft landing in the West Texas desert 11 minutes later.
- Competing head-to-head with fellow billionaire Richard Branson, who flew into space aboard his Virgin Galactic rocket plane July 11, Bezos blasted off with his brother Mark and two history-making passengers: 82-year-old aviation pioneer Wally Funk, the oldest person to fly in space, and Oliver Daemen, an 18-year-old Dutch student who is the youngest ever to fly in space.
What is New Shephard, the rocket system?
- It is a rocket system meant to take tourists to space successfully.
- New Shephard has been named after astronaut Alan Shephard, the first American to go to space.
- It offers flights to space over 100 km above the Earth and accommodation for payloads.
- The system is a fully reusable, vertical takeoff and vertical landing space vehicle.
- To increase the life of medical oxygen cylinders three fold, the Indian Institute of Technology, Ropar has developed a first-of-its-kind Oxygen Rationing Device – AMLEX.
- AMLEX supplies a required volume of oxygen to the patient during inhalation and trips when the patient exhales CO2. This process saves oxygen which otherwise unnecessarily get wasted.
- So far, during exhalation, the oxygen in the oxygen cylinder/pipe is pushed out along with the exhaled CO2 by the user. This leads to wastage of a large volume of oxygen in long run.
- In addition to this, a large volume of oxygen escapes from the openings of the mask to the environment in the resting period (between inhalation and exhalation) due to continuous flow of life saving gas in the mask.
National Livestock Mission
- National Livestock Mission (NLM) proposes to bring sharp focus on entrepreneurship development and breed improvement in rural poultry, sheep, goat and piggery including feed and fodder development.
- It was launched to ensure quantitative and qualitative improvement in livestock production systems and capacity building of all stakeholders in 2014-15.
- It is being implemented as a sub scheme of White Revolution – Rashtriya Pashudhan Vikas Yojana from April 2019.
- The NLM is organised into the following four Sub – Missions:
- Sub -Mission on Livestock Development,
- Sub – Mission on Pig Development in North-Eastern Region,
- Sub – Mission on Feed and Fodder Development and
- Sub -Mission on Skill Development, Technology Transfer and Extension.
- Rural Poultry Entrepreneurship component will give direct employment to 1.5 lakh farmers for sheep goats and poultry development.
- Livestock Census and Integrated Sample Survey component will support states for undertaking Livestock Census and for bringing out production estimates of milk, meat, egg and wool.
- Livestock Health and Disease Control will be implemented to,
- Reduce risk to animal health by prophylactic vaccination against diseases of livestock and poultry,
- Capacity building of Veterinary services, disease surveillance and strengthening veterinary infrastructure.
- During the next 5 years, Mobile veterinary clinics will be set up to deliver animal health services at doorstep of farmers engaged in Animal Husbandry.
- Researchers have developed a new low-cost electrical contact material for thermoelectric devices that is stable at high temperature.
- Researchers from the International Advanced Research Centre for Powder Metallurgy & New Materials (ARCI), an autonomous institute of the Department of Science & Technology, GoI, have designed and developed thermoelectric modules using lead telluride (PbTe) and magnesium stannite silicide (Mg2Si1-xSnx) compounds, which gives more than 10% conversion efficiency.
- The ARCI team explored various metallization methods and diffusion barrier materials with a systemic approach to make a stable bismuth-doped Mg2(Si1-xSnx)-Cu joint to fabricate a thermoelectric generator.
- The thermoelectric material can generate electricity by using a temperature difference between its two sides.
- The thermoelectric device can also function as a small heat pump, moving heat from one side of the device to the other.
- Thermoelectric materials convert thermal energy directly into electricity through a process that involves a solid-state electron and phonon diffusion process.
High Strength Metastable Beta Titanium Alloy
- High Strength Metastable Beta Titanium Alloy was developed by the Defence Metallurgical Research Laboratory (DMRL), a premier Hyderabad based laboratory of DRDO.
- It contains Vanadium, Iron and Aluminium (Ti-10V-2Fe-3Al) on industrial scale for applications in aerospace structural forgings.
- It is already being used by many developed nations as beneficial substitute for the relatively heavier traditional Ni-Cr-Mo structural steels to achieve weight savings.
- It is unique due to their higher strength, ductility, fatigue, and fracture toughness – making them attractive for aircraft structural applications.
- Their relatively lower lifetime cost, owing to superior corrosion resistance in comparison to steels, is an effective trade-off to justify the use of this expensive material in India too.
- Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) has identified over 15 steel components which may be replaced by high strength-to-weight ratio Ti-10V-2Fe-3Al alloy forgings in the near future.
- The excellent forgeability of the alloy facilitates manufacture of intricately configured components for aerospace applications with potential for 40% weight savings.
Some of the popular alloys in the aerospace industry include:
- Titanium Alloys
- Aluminum Alloys
- Copper Alloys
- Stainless Steel
- Super alloys
- Other Specialty Alloys
- Minister for Culture informed Rajya Sabha that 3 monuments of Andhra Pradesh have been Identified as “Adarsh Smarak” for providing additional facilities like Wi-Fi, Cafeteria, Interpretation centre, Brail signages, Illumination, etc.
- These Three monuments of Andhra Pradesh are:
- Monuments at Nagarjunakonda, District Guntur,
- Budhhist Remains at Salihundam, District Srikakulam, and
- Veerabhadra Temple at Lepakshi.
- Further, Fort at Gandikota has been included in the Adopt-a-Heritage scheme of Ministry of Tourism, which is PPP mode.