Answers: Mains Marathon – UPSC Mains Current Affairs Questions – September 21

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Q1) Is it morally and legally imperious of India to deport Rohingyas back to Myanmar? Critically examine.

Deporting Rohingyas from India is both morally and legally wrong due to the following reasons:

  • The purported deportation of the Rohingya from India is almost legally untenable as the government is bound by customary international law to respect the principle of non-refoulement.   
    No government, as per this law, can forcibly push back asylum-seekers to the country they have fled to escape violence,as it might endanger their very survival despite not being a signatory to the 1951 UN Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol.
  • The courts in India have traditionally upheld the rights of refugees facing deportation or forced eviction in different contexts by taking recourse to what is called the “canon of construction” or a “shadow of refugee law”.
  • The Right to Life under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution has been so interpreted by the SC that it can be extended to anyone living in India irrespective of her nationality.

Deporting Rohingyas from India is both morally and legally may be the correct decision due to the following reasons

Government’s decision against all immigrants including 14,000 Rohingya is sought to be justified on the grounds that

  • They are “susceptible” to recruitment by“terror” groups
  • They “not only infringe on the rights of Indian citizens but also pose grave security challenges”.
  • India’s announcement that it plans to deport its Rohingya population is an attempt to curry favour with Buddhist-majority Myanmar ahead of an official visit by Prime Minister Narendra Modi
  • India is actively pursuing a good relationship with Myanmar’s army officials in the hope that it can enlist their help in acting against militants in India’s northeast, many of whom are based in Myanmar’s Sagaing jungles.

Q2. What is inclusive growth? What are the positive aspects of inclusive growth? What are the recent reform initiatives by government for greater inclusion? Also, discuss the challenges behind lack of inclusive growth in India. (GS 3)

Inclusive growth:

  •         Inclusive growth infers an impartial allocation of resources with benefits incurred to every section of the society.
  •         It lessens the fast growth rate of poverty in a country and upsurges the participation of people into the development of the country.
  •         Rapid growth is necessary to reduce poverty but for this growth to be sustainable in the long run, it should be broad-based across sectors, and inclusive of the large part of the country’s labor force.

Positive aspects of inclusive growth:

  • Lower incidence of poverty.
  • Broad-based and significant improvement in health outcomes.
  • Universal access for children to school.
  • Increased access to higher education and improved standards of education, including skill development.
  • Better opportunities for both wage employment and livelihood.
  • Improvement in provision of basic amenities like water, electricity, roads, sanitation and housing.  

Recent reform initiatives by government for greater inclusion:

  •         The biometric-based unique identification system, Aadhaar, now ensures that the poor are no longer invisible and, therefore, more empowered.
  •         A bank account for every adult now ensures universal access to financial services, at least in principle.
  •         When combined with Aadhaar, such access will accelerate financial inclusion.
  •         The shock of demonetization and the introduction of the new national goods and services tax will gradually expand India’s tax base and eliminate incentives for businesses to operate in the shadow of the formal economy.

Challenges behind lack of inclusive growth in India:

Despite the high growth over the past two decades, concerns have been raised over the growth not being equally distributed. Following are the challenges:

  •         The country remains shackled in dishonesty, red tape, traditional social hurdles and a bewildering lack of transparency.
  •         It is witnessed that growth is not uniform across sectors and large cross-sections of the population remain outside its purview.
  •         Indian society has to seriously introspect major issues such as eradication of child labour, women empowerment, removal of caste barriers and an improvement in work culture.
  •         Inclusive growth being a long term process necessarily originates from the inclusive nature of socio-economic development across regions and people.
  •         There will be no inclusive growth unless it takes satisfactory care of women and children.
  •         Literacy levels have to rise to provide the skilled workforce required for higher inclusive growth.

3-What is the present status of Sundarbans faunal diversity?What are the threats that Sundarbans is  facing today?(GS4)

  • ·         The Indian segment of the Sundarbans, part of a UNESCO World Heritage site, forms part of the Ganga-Brahmaputra delta across 9,630, distributed among 104 islands.
  • ·         The region hosts 2,487 species that come under the zoological kingdom of Animalia, and 140 under the more primitive Protista.

What are the threats that Sundarbans is  facing today?

·         Due to pressure  on habitat from people and natural threats have shrunk the mangrove swamp habitat, mammal numbers are declining.

·         Two Rhinos, Swamp deer, Barking deer, and Hog deer and Asiatic Wild Water buffalo are not found in Sundarbans anymore.

·         There are 356 species of birds, the most spectacular being raptors, or birds of prey

·         There are 11 turtles, including the famous Olive Ridley and Hawskbill sea turtles and the most threatened freshwater species, the River Terrapin.

·         A crocodile, 13 lizards including three species of Monitor Lizards and five Geckos are found here.

·         The rivers, creeks channels and the islands together harbour about 30 snake species, led by the King Cobra, considered vulnerable by IUCN.

·         The mangrove ecosystem covers about 350 species of fish. Cartilaginous fish, which have skeletons of cartilage rather than bone, make up 10.3%.

·         The IUCN conservation status shows 6.3% fish are near-threatened and 4.85% are threatened. Also, there are 173 molluscs.


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