- PM Modi announces free vaccine to all above 18 years from June 21; says govt not only enhanced speed but also widened ambit of vaccination
- Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana extended till Diwali; Over 80 crore countrymen to get free food grains till November
- State governments and other stake holders welcome Prime Minster's decision to provide free of cost vaccine and food grains
- Country’s Covid -19 recovery rate stands at 93.94 per cent
- Indian Navy inducts three indigenously-built advanced light helicopters ALH MK-III
- World Bank approves 500 million dollar program to help boost India's MSME sector
- CII welcomes PM’s announcement on central procurement of vaccines
- Vice Admiral Rajesh Pendharkar assumes Charge as Director General Naval Operations
- Maldives FM Abdulla Shahid elected as President of 76th Session of UN General Assembly
- Indian students’ return is something, China can do: Top Chinese Expert in exclusive talk with Prasar Bharati
- Heavy rains killed 17 people in Sri Lanka
- 40 people killed and dozens injured in passenger trains collision in southern Pakistan
Belligerence and pushback | TH
- In May, China issued a strange warning to Bangladesh.
- Do not join Quad
- Bangladesh Foreign Minister A.K. Abdul Momen promptly and publicly challenged the Chinese envoy’s statement
- That China’s remarks would reverberate far beyond South Asia was expected and perhaps intended by Beijing itself.
- The spokesperson of U.S. State Department remarked, “What we would say is that we respect Bangladesh’s sovereignty and we respect Bangladesh’s right to make foreign policy decisions for itself.”
- Beijing realises that the Quad with all its weaknesses, is emerging as a reality and there is little it can do to prevent that.
- It tried but failed.
- And so, it is agitated about Quad’s future role and its potential success in offering the regional states an alternative to its own strong-arm tactics.
- The Quad member states are busy in figuring out a cohesive agenda amongst themselves and there are no plans for an expansion.
- There is a desire to work with like-minded nations.
- Beijing has failed to prevent nations from the West to the East from coming out with their Indo-Pacific strategies
- For many regional states in South Asia and the Indo-Pacific, it has been a smooth ride so far with China being the only game in town.
- For all the criticism China has heaped on the Quad’s members for trying to create an exclusive clique, it will be Beijing that is likely to demand clear-cut foreign policy choices from its regional interlocutors.
Correcting the vaccine course
- Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi declared that the Centre would take over the responsibility of procuring 75% of the vaccines (from the current 50%), and provide them free to the states for all those above the age of 18 (and thus relieve states of the responsibility of procuring and paying for vaccines) from June 21.
- The Centre also imposed a ₹150 cap on the service charge on each dose that will apply to the remaining 25% of vaccines which can be sourced and distributed by the private sector.
- Much-needed correction
- PM Modi said that earlier on there was a demand for decentralisation.
- The fundamental issue of inadequate supplies
- Taking ownership of vaccine procurement, providing doses for free, while leaving distribution to states and allowing the private sector to continue to serve those willing to pay is a better model.
- Approve more vaccines (provided they pass the science), strike deals with vaccine-makers whose offerings have been approved elsewhere, and build a stockpile for this year and next.
A year of internal and external challenges |
- This week marks a year since India and China began formal military talks to resolve the standoff in eastern Ladakh.
- most serious external security challenge
- It has also been a year since the Centre promulgated three ordinances on agriculture.
- most serious internal political mobilisation
- In both cases, a resolution remains elusive and India’s capacity has come under the scanner.
- After many rounds of political, diplomatic, and military talks, there was a breakthrough with both sides disengaging in the Pangong Tso area.
- It was a testament to the Indian Army’s ability to stand up to the People’s Liberation Army, occupy strategic heights in the Kailash range, and the ability of diplomats to leverage it to push back China.
- But using the leverage has meant that India’s ability to now force, or persuade, China to restore status quo ante in other areas — Hot Springs, Gogra, Depsang — is limited.
- The farm protests are a product of the Centre’s unilateral push on a sensitive issue, and then a maximalist position adopted by farm leaders — which, then, resulted in protests during a pandemic, refusal to negotiate with a spirit of give-and-take, and unacceptable violence on January 26.
- Irrespective of the reasons, the images of China in Ladakh and farmers at Delhi’s borders have tested the State’s strength and democratic credibility.
Fair wind |
- India could see a third consecutive year of surplus rainfall.
- The IMD has said that monsoon rains will likely be 101% of the Long Period Average (LPA) of 88 cm.
- In 2020, it was 109% of the LPA and in 2019, 110%.
- The core agricultural zone, includes States where agriculture is significantly rain-fed including Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Odisha and West Bengal.
- The IMD’s estimate of the distribution of this rainfall also suggests that except for the Northeast, where rainfall is expected to be ‘below normal’, other regions are expected to get above normal rainfall.
- There are also ‘negative’ IOD (Indian Ocean Dipole) conditions over the Indian Ocean during the monsoon season, meaning warmer water and greater precipitation in the eastern Indian Ocean.
- Put together, they mean that these larger climate factors are, as of now, unlikely to have a significant influence over the prevailing monsoon.
- A good monsoon could aid agriculture which has been among the few bright spots in the Indian economy.
- Two good years of rains have boosted storage in the key reservoirs.
- India is now moving to a system where medium range forecasts, or expected changes in monsoon or larger weather patterns over two weeks, are better captured by the monsoon models deployed.
- These inputs must be used by the Government to better prepare infrastructure in the eventuality that excessive rains can wipe out the potential gains for agriculture.
- It may also be worthwhile to encourage farmers to sow higher-value crops than only rice via the MSP route.
- The favourable tidings should not be an excuse to abandon caution.
Q. ) Who is the president of Nigeria?
- Muhammadu Buhari
- Goodluck Ebele Johathan
- Shehu Shagari
- Lai Mohammed
Q.) In which year did the United Nations’s Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention take place?