- Centre advises states to form teams to coordinate with vaccine manufacturers & private hospitals for timely supply of vaccine
- Health Minister Harsh Vardhan asks Rajasthan govt to probe high wastage & dumping of Covid vaccines into dustbins in state
- Uttar Pradesh govt to launch massive drive today to vaccinate one crore people in June
- Unlock process to begin today in Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh
- Govt simplifies Family Pension Rules in view of COVID-19 pandemic
- Delhi HC says Twitter will have to comply with India’s new IT rules
- NCPCR asks Delhi Police to register FIR against Twitter for violation of POCSO Act
- EAM S Jaishankar to chair BRICS Foreign Ministers meeting today
- Cumulative number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in country exceeds 21.58 Crore
- Generation of post COVID vaccination certificate linked to updation of status by vaccinator: Govt
- China allows couples to have three children after relaxation in its one-child policy failed to bear result
- Israel coalition government a threat to security, warns Benjamin Netanyahu
- Hundreds more Afghans and their families to be allowed to settle in UK
- UK in early stages of third wave of COVID19: Scientist
- WhatsApp moved the Delhi High Court against the rules
- Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules 2021
- “significant social media intermediary providing services primarily in the nature of messaging shall enable the identification of the first originator of the information on its computer resource as may be required by a judicial order”.
- WhatsApp’s contention is that for compliance and traceability, it would have to break its end-to-end encryption service that allows messages to be read only by the sender and the receiver.
- Its argument is that the encryption feature allows for privacy protections and breaking it would mean a violation of privacy.
- Ministry of Electronics and IT: the traceability measure will be used by law enforcement as the “last resort” and will come by only in specific situations, such as “for the purposes of prevention, detection, investigation, prosecution or punishment of an offence related to the sovereignty and integrity of India... or child sexual abuse material, punishable with imprisonment....”
- The assertion suggests that this requirement is in line with the Puttaswamy judgment that clarified that any restriction to the right of privacy must be necessary, proportionate and include safeguards against abuse.
- But the Government, as the law stands now, can already seek access to encrypted data under Section 69(3) of the IT Act, and Rules 17 and 13 of the 2009 Surveillance Rules that require intermediaries to assist with decryption when they have the technical ability to do so and when law enforcement has no other alternative.
- The trouble with enforcing traceability is that without safeguards such as having any independent or judicial oversight, government agencies could seek any user’s identity on vague grounds and this could compromise the anonymity of whistle-blowers and journalistic sources, who can claim to be acting in the public interest.
Co-WIN, casinos and luck
- The experience of booking an appointment to get vaccinated in India has been rewarding for some but frustrating for most.
- Soon you realise that no matter how fast you click the confirm button, it’s not easy to get an appointment.
- People hooked on to the game of ‘fastest finger first’ to book an appointment.
- The psychology behind why random alerts and repeated log ins into the website to try one’s luck at booking an appointment works is the same as why people gamble money in casinos or buy lottery tickets.
- The only difference between gambling at casinos and booking vaccination appointments is that in gambling, the casino wins most of the time.
- But regarding vaccination, both the government and the people lose.
- Humans respond in similar ways as rats and pigeons when given an occasional reward for repetitive behaviour.
- Casinos give players the illusion of control by letting players place chips and play their cards.
- Giving them choices and making people take action makes them feel like they have some control, as opposed to giving purely luck-based unpredictable rewards.
- The men in the uniform! The unsung heroes of the Indian armed force worked tirelessly and without a fuss when the nation faced two devastating cyclones in quick succession, on the back of the ongoing pandemic.
- Apart from fanning out in remote parts of the affected States to provide succour to the hapless civilians facing the wrath of nature, the jawans also served hot meals to the needy and the poor in Tamil Nadu.
- Apart from these efforts, there are many instances when the hardy troopers trudged through chest-high snow and intense cold, carrying pregnant women on makeshift stretchers for miles to the nearest hospital in Kashmir.
- And, never a burden on the caring shoulders, the expectant mother managed to reach the hospital safely and deliver a healthy and normal child.
- The determination to achieve the “objective”, as called in military parlance, saw the Indian peace-keeping contingent in Congo saving more than 1,000 people from burning lava a fortnight back.
- This extraordinary feat by the Indian Army soldiers found a laudatory mention during the International Peacekeeping Day at the United Nations Headquarters in New York last week.
- Trained to work in emergency and chaos, the armed forces, with the two cyclones behind them, are now again in the thick of the battle against COVID-19.
- It can’t be stressed more that as long as the men in olive-green, the whites or navy blue are around, the nation must remain reassured that it’s in the safest of hands.
- May God bless our forces!
Rescue The Steel Frame
- Bengal chief secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay’s sudden recall to Delhi is the product of a bitter BJP-TMC fight with a worrying larger message – the bureaucracy’s increasing vulnerability to political headwinds.
- Centre and states normally follow a consultative process on officers’ central deputations.
- The rules require state government’s “concurrence” in deputing IAS officers to serve under central government.
- But in case of “disagreement”, the state must “give effect” to Centre’s decision.
- This being the statutory position, Bandyopadhyay and the state government have few options realistically.
- Reports suggest Centre was unhappy that Bengal CM Banerjee and Bandyopadhyay left a meeting chaired by PM Modi to review cyclone damage and relief efforts.
- The Bengal CM hasn’t clarified whether Bandyopadhyay sought her permission to continue in the meeting. But the fact is, by service rules, he also reports to the PM.
- Banerjee claims the PM allowed both of them to leave.
- What does that do to the morale and efficacy of the men and women whose job is to administer a vast, complex country?
- IAS and IPS officers serve their elected political masters.
- But they should not be expected to serve the politics of their masters.
- That’s the red line that should not be crossed, but sadly is crossed with increasing impunity, by both politicians, and even more sadly, by more than a few bureaucrats.
- The cumulative effect of a timorous and politically-buffeted bureaucracy has already cost India.
- The political executive at Centre and states must therefore, no matter how bitter their political fight, never abandon the consultative process.
- Sardar Patel’s steel frame now has the look of a battered tin frame.
Q.) Name the capital of Seychelles
- Port Louis
Q.) Who is the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda?
- Gaston Browne
- Baldwin Spencer
- Vere Bird
- Lester Bird