CAO Daily Editorial analysis for UPSC IAS 21-August, 2017
Current Affairs Only Daily Editorial Analysis for Competitive Exams
1.Safeguarding the interests of farmers
In this article author has explained about the trade transparency with farmers and Public Distribution System (PDS)
The Public Distribution System (PDS) evolved as a system of management of scarcity and for distribution of food grains at affordable prices.Over the years, PDS has become an important part of Government’s policy for management of food economy in the country.PDS is supplemental in nature and is not intended to make available the entire requirement of any of the commodities distributed under to a household or a section of the society.
PDS is operated under the joint responsibility of the Central and the State Governments. The Central Government, through Food Corporation of India (FCI), has assumed the responsibility for procurement, storage, transportation and bulk allocation of food grains to the State Governments. The operational responsibility including allocation within State, identification of eligible families, issue of Ration Cards and supervision of the functioning of Fair Price Shops (FPSs) etc., rest with the State Governments. Under the PDS, presently the commodities namely wheat, rice, sugar and kerosene are being allocated to the States/UTs for distribution.Some States/UTs also distribute additional items of mass consumption through the PDS outlets such as pulses, edible oils, iodized salt, spices, etc.
Evolution of PDS
Evolution of public distribution of grains in India had its origin in the ‘rationing’ system introduced by the British during the World War II. In view of the fact that the rationing system and its successor, the public distribution system (PDS) has played an important role in attaining higher levels of the household food security and completely eliminating the threats of famines from the face of the country, it will be in the fitness of things that its evolution, working and efficacy are examined in some details.
It was really the generation of World War’s own compulsions that forced the then British Government to introduce the first structured public distribution of cereals in India through the rationing system-sale of a fixed quantity of ration (rice or wheat) to entitled families (ration card holders) in specified cities/towns. The system was started in 1939 in Bombay and subsequently extended to other cities and towns. By the end of 1943, 13 cities had been brought under the coverage of rationing and by 1946, as many as 771 cities/towns were covered.
- Providing foodgrains and other essential items to vulnerable sections of the society at resonable (subsidised) prices
- To have a moderating influence on the open market prices of cereals, the distribution of which constitutes a fairly big share of the total marketable surplus
- To attempt socialisation in the matter of distribution of essential commodities.
National Food Security Act, 2013
It was signed into law on 12 September 2013, retroactive to 5 July 2013.
Ensuring Food Security for citizens of the country.
- Efficient procurement at Minimum Support Price (MSP), storage and distribution of food grains.
- Ensuring availability of food grains and sugar through appropriate policy instrument; including maintenance of buffer stocks of food grains.
- Making food grains accessible at reasonable prices, especially to the weak errand vulnerable sections of the society under PDS.
- To implement the national food security Act, 2013, throughout the country.
- To undertake price support operations through efficient procurement of wheat, paddy/rice and coarse gains.
- To Strength the Targeted Public Distributions Systems.
- Development/Promotion of Sugar Industry.
- Development of the Warehousing Sector.
- Improvement in Public Service System.
2.Who owns my data?
These days data security and digital privacy has been a hot topic of discussion this article also talks about the same specifying how our data can be misused
Question raised by the author
Who owns my data?
He answers this question by setting a context
If we replace data with a physical object, like a car or a house, the answer would obviously be “me”. That’s true not only of physical objects, but also of content because the latter is governed by copyright laws. The principle is we are the owner of the content we create, such as a photograph, because it would not have come into existence but for your labour. In the past, when you sent a film for developing and printing, the studio did not assert any rights over your pictures; their lien over your property ended when you paid for the services.
But in case of digital world it is totally different
If you take a picture and publish it on any platform or, in some cases, even store it in an online “drive” or a “cloud”, then you give to the concerned platform or even the device a “worldwide, royalty-free, non-exclusive license to use, distribute, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, publicly perform and publicly display such content.
Way Ahead of this concern
What will happen tomorrow when the Internet of Things (IoT) becomes ubiquitous. Who owns the data collected by smart wearables, transport and energy systems and billions of other connected devices, is going to be a very complex question. As the numbers of stakeholders in the process of generation, collection, storage and processing increase, the question of ownership and responsibilities among them shall become very complex. Each one of these entities will be interested in using, holding, transmitting and selling/monetising the data.
What can be done to stop it?
there is an urgent need to create a technology framework to ensure that the data owners have full control on their data and every entity which holds and uses the data follows the broadly accepted principles of notice, choice and consent, collection limitation, purpose limitation, access and correction norms, disclosure of information norms, security, openness, and accountability.
Similarly, there is a need to create a policy framework which should recognise and formalise the ownership, rights and responsibilities of various entities in the value chain.
It should also create analogous frameworks for data as in the case of normal properties, such as those dealing with inheritance.
There is an urgent need to create a citizen-centric data eco-system that empowers individuals with control and visibility over their data.
3.No Mughals in Maharashtra
What is the news?
The Maharashtra government has decided to revise the state curriculum in history textbooks for Class VII.
Why such decision?
For the omission of the Mughals in India and Muslim rulers before them, such as Muhammad bin Tuqhlaq and Razia Sultana, while keeping Shivaji as the focal point of the medieval period.
It is a simple way to bring a long-term ideological shift in a country is to alter the curriculum in school textbooks.
This state government’s decision was defended on the grounds that it looked at history from a “Maharashtra-centric point of view”. A similar argument was made by the Rajasthan government in 2015, when it dropped the writings of progressive Urdu writers such as Ismat Chugtai from the school curriculum.
The humanities and social sciences — is lost if it focuses only on the local just to stay within the confines of context.
The influence of the Mughal era is not limited to a single state, but has contributed to shaping contemporary India.
It represents a period spanning centuries and excluding it on the ground that it is irrelevant to Maharashtra is flawed.