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13th April 2024 (11 Topics)

13th April 2024

QUIZ - 13th April 2024

5 Questions

5 Minutes


The government's launch of CDP-SURAKSHA aims to streamline subsidy disbursement to horticulture farmers, fostering growth in the sector. This digital platform seeks to enhance efficiency and transparency in subsidy allocation under the Cluster Development Programme (CDP), contributing to the development of India's horticulture sector.

1: Dimension- What is CDP-SURAKSHA?
  • Introduction: CDP-SURAKSHA, acronym for "System for Unified Resource Allocation, Knowledge, and Secure Horticulture Assistance," is a digital platform initiated by the government. It facilitates instant subsidy disbursal to horticulture farmers, leveraging e-RUPI vouchers from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI).
  • Key Features: The platform integrates various databases, including PM-KISAN and UIDAI validation, ensuring seamless subsidy allocation. It enables farmers to place orders for planting material, contributes their share of costs, generates e-RUPI vouchers, and verifies delivery through geo-tagging, enhancing accountability and efficiency.
  • Operational Process: Farmers access the platform to order planting material, contribute their share of costs, and receive subsidies upfront. Vendors supply materials upon verification, and payments are released only post-verification, ensuring transparency and adherence to guidelines.
2: Dimension- How does CDP-SURAKSHA work?
  • Farmer Engagement: Farmers register on the platform using their mobile numbers, place orders for planting material, and contribute their share of costs.
  • Subsidy Disbursement: Upon placing orders, farmers receive subsidies upfront through e-RUPI vouchers, facilitating seamless transactions.
  • Vendor Verification: Vendors deliver planting material, which farmers verify through geo-tagged media, ensuring transparency in delivery and payment release.
  • Subsidy Release: After verification, implementing agencies (IAs) validate documents and release subsidies to vendors, promoting accountability and adherence to guidelines.
3: Dimension- Comparison with the old system
  • Upfront Subsidy: Unlike the previous system, CDP-SURAKSHA provides subsidies upfront at the time of purchasing planting material, streamlining the subsidy disbursal process.
  • Verification Mechanism: The platform incorporates geo-tagging verification, ensuring accountability and transparency in delivery and payment release, unlike the traditional system.

Government's Cluster Development Program (CDP):

  • Objective: CDP aims to promote integrated and market-led development of horticulture clusters, fostering pre-production, production, post-harvest, and marketing activities.
  • Implementation: NHB identifies and develops horticulture clusters, providing financial assistance based on cluster size, attracting private investment, and promoting sustainable growth in the sector.
  • Impact: With 55 identified clusters covering 10 lakh farmers, CDP is expected to catalyze private investment of Rs 8,250 crore, contributing to the holistic development of the horticulture sector.


  • Definition: e-RUPI is a one-time payment mechanism introduced by NPCI, enabling voucher-based transactions without digital payment apps or internet banking access.
  • Utility: It facilitates targeted subsidy disbursement for specific purposes or activities, enhancing transparency and efficiency in fund allocation.
  • E-RUPI is a cashless and contactless mode of digital payments medium, which will be delivered to beneficiaries' mobile phones in form of an SMS string or a QR code.
  • The payment system will be a person-specific and purpose-specific system.

Mains Practice Question

Q. Evaluate the role of digital platforms like CDP-SURAKSHA in promoting inclusive growth in the agricultural sector. What are the key features that distinguish it from the traditional subsidy disbursal system?


India grapples with a significant challenge of human-animal conflict, especially concerning encounters with tigers and elephants. Understanding and mitigating this conflict are crucial for fostering coexistence and preserving India's rich biodiversity.

1: Dimension - Complexities of the Conflict
  • Population Dynamics: India hosts significant populations of wild elephants and tigers, leading to frequent encounters with humans, resulting in fatalities on both sides.
  • Habitat Fragmentation: Urbanization, agricultural expansion, and infrastructural development fragment natural habitats, forcing wildlife to encroach upon human settlements.
  • Economic Impacts: Crop depredation and livestock predation lead to economic losses for farmers, exacerbating tensions between communities and wildlife.
2: Dimension - Impacts and Challenges
  • Economic Hardships: Crop damage and loss of livestock affect the livelihoods of communities living near wildlife habitats.
  • Psychological Distress: Fear and anxiety prevail among affected communities, perpetuating animosity towards wildlife.
  • Conservation Dilemma: Balancing conservation efforts with human livelihood needs presents a complex dilemma, often leading to conflicts of interest.
3: Dimension - Required Strategies
  • Comprehensive Approach: Mitigating human-wildlife conflicts requires a multi-pronged strategy involving proactive measures and community involvement.
  • Sustainable Solutions: Innovative deterrent methods such as electric fencing and beehive fences can mitigate conflicts without harming wildlife.
  • Community Empowerment: Investing in community-based conservation initiatives and alternative livelihood options can foster tolerance towards wildlife and alleviate socio-economic burdens.


  • Understanding the conflict: Researching all aspects of the conflict profile to understand the context for conflict in any given situation (hotspot mapping, community attitudes, spatial and temporal characteristics, etc.)
  • Mitigation: Reducing the impacts of HWC after it occurs (compensation, insurance, alternative livelihoods, etc.)
  • Response: Addressing an ongoing HWC incident (response teams, reporting mechanisms, standard operating procedures, etc.)
  • Prevention: Stopping or preventing HWC before it occurs (fences, early detection tools, safe working environments, etc.)
  • Policy: Enabling HWC management through protocols, principles, provisions, and measures stipulated in legislation and undertaken by authorities (international and national law, national and local HWC management plans, spatial plans, etc.)
  • Monitoring: Measuring the performance and effectiveness of HWC management interventions over time (data collection, information sharing, adaptive management, etc.)

Mains Practice Question

Q: Human-wildlife conflict poses a significant threat to both human livelihoods and biodiversity conservation efforts. Discuss the key dimensions of this conflict in India and suggest holistic strategies to address it.


The urgency of the climate crisis has been underscored by Simon Steill, the UN climate chief, who emphasized the need for immediate action to avert a climate catastrophe. The upcoming COP29 international climate summit in Baku, Azerbaijan, presents a crucial opportunity for nations to strengthen their commitments to mitigate climate change.

1: Dimension - Urgent Need for Decisive Action
  • Stark Reality of Climate Crisis: The current trajectory of climate change presents a dire situation, with global temperature records consistently being broken and carbon emissions continuing unabated. Scientists warn that the world is at risk of surpassing critical climate tipping points, leading to irreversible consequences.
  • Inadequacy of Current Commitments: Despite international efforts, the current commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions fall significantly short of what is required to limit global warming to safe levels. The Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) set forth by nations are insufficient to meet the targets outlined by the IPCC.
  • Role of G20 Nations: Steill emphasizes the pivotal role of G20 countries, particularly the US, EU, China, and India, in accelerating decarbonization efforts. These nations account for the majority of global emissions and must lead the way in adopting stringent emission reduction measures.
2: Dimension - Escalating Climate Impacts
  • Rising Global Temperatures: The past decade has seen a relentless increase in global temperatures, with records being shattered month after month. This trend not only threatens ecosystems but also exacerbates extreme weather events and disrupts livelihoods.
  • India's Heatwave Crisis: India, in particular, is experiencing the severe consequences of climate change, with heatwaves becoming more frequent and intense. The India Meteorological Department reports alarming trends, including a significant rise in the average number of heatwave days per year.
  • Antarctic Tipping Point: Scientists warn of potential tipping points, such as the destabilization of Antarctica's ice sheets, which could lead to catastrophic sea level rise. Recent research indicates rapid changes in Antarctica, signaling the urgency of addressing climate change before irreversible damage occurs.
3: Dimension - Imperative for Immediate Action
  • Enhanced Climate Commitments: The upcoming COP29 summit provides a crucial opportunity for nations to enhance their climate commitments and align with the IPCC's targets. This includes ambitious targets for emission reduction, investment in renewable energy, and adaptation measures.
  • Global Cooperation and Climate Finance: Addressing climate change requires coordinated efforts and substantial financial resources. Wealthier nations must fulfill their commitments to provide climate finance to developing countries, enabling them to mitigate and adapt to climate impacts.
  • Public Awareness and Political Will: It is essential to raise public awareness about the urgency of climate action and hold political leaders accountable for implementing effective policies. The absence of climate issues from electoral agendas highlights the need for greater advocacy and mobilization at all levels of society.

Fact Box:

India’s Renewable Energy

  • India’s goal to achieve 500 GW of non-fossil-based electricity generation capacity by 2030 aligns with its efforts to be net zero by 2070.
  • In 2023-24, out of the total generation capacity of 9,943 MW added, 8,269 was from non-fossil fuel sources.
  • According to the Renewable Energy Statistics 2023, India has the 4th largest installed capacity of renewables.

Constitutional Provisions recognising Environmental rights

  • Article 48A of the Constitution provides that the State shall endeavour to protect and improve the environment and to safeguard the forests and wildlife of the country.
  • Clause (g) of Article 51A stipulates that it shall be the duty of every citizen of India to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers and wildlife, and to have compassion for living creatures.
  • Article 21 recognises the right to life and personal liberty while Article 14 indicates that all persons shall have equality before law and the equal protection of laws. These Articles are important sources of the right to a clean environment and the right against the adverse effects of climate change

Mains Practice Question

Q: “The urgency of the climate crisis demands immediate and decisive action from the global community”. Discuss the key dimensions of the climate crisis and propose strategies to mitigate its impacts.


Retail inflation declined to a five-month low of 4.85 per cent in March mainly due to cooling food prices.

Understanding Inflation
  • As prices rise, a single unit of currency loses value as it buys fewer goods and services. This loss of purchasing power impacts the general cost of living for the common public which ultimately leads to a deceleration in economic growth. The consensus view among economists is that sustained inflation occurs when a nation's money supply growth outpaces economic growth.
  • To combat this, a country's appropriate monetary authority, like the central bank, then takes the necessary measures to keep inflation within permissible limits and keep the economy running smoothly.
  • Inflation is measured in a variety of ways depending upon the types of goods and a service considered and is the opposite of deflation which indicates a general decline occurring in prices for goods and services when the inflation rate falls below 0%.


Turtle mascot ‘Mohan Babu’ adopted for Cooch Behar election to symbolise cultural significance and encourage voter turnout.


  • The Indian softshell turtle (Nilssonia gangetica), or Ganges softshell turtle is a species of softshell turtle found in South Asia in rivers such as the Ganges, Indus and Mahanadi.
  • It feeds mostly on fish, amphibians, carrion and other animal matter, but also takes aquatic plants.
  • This turtle is listed in part II of Schedule I of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972.
  • IUCN Status: Critically Endangered

About Election Mascot

  • Locals revere black softshell turtles as incarnations of the Hindu deity Vishnu, naming them “Mohan.”
  • Recognizing the turtle’s significance, the Election Commission adopted “Mohan Babu” as the poll mascot for Cooch Behar.


Mount Etna is spewing volcanic vortex rings


  • It is an active volcano on the east coast of Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea.
  • Etna’s summit has five craters, which are responsible for most of the volcano’s eruptions; there are also “flank” eruptions that occur out of 300-odd vents of varying sizes along the slopes of the mountain.
  • Etna has been a World Heritage Site since 2013


Recently, Rongali Bihu, also known as Bohag Bihu, is celebrated, which is the Assamese New Year wherein farmers thank the lord for the successful harvest and welcome the spring season.


  • The “Bihu” is derived from the Sanskrit word bishu, which means ‘to ask for prosperity from the Gods during the harvest season’. it is celebrated for seven days, wherein each day holds a special significance.
  • The first pinnacle phase is called Raati Bihu wherein women gather beneath an ancient tree or an open field, surrounded by burning torches. The participation of men is mostly ceremonial wherein they play Pepa (buffalo hornpipe) or Bholuka Baanhor Toka (a musical instrument made of split bamboo). This is followed by Bali Husori, where Bihu dances are organised by the young.
  • The main celebration starts on the day of Goru (cow) Bihu, where livestock is washed with a combination of symbolic herbs like black gram and turmeric paste, whipped litsea salicifolia, and pieces of bottle gourd and brinjal. After the bath, they are decorated with new harnesses and garlands.
  • The second day is known as Manuh (human) Bihu where people take a bath with black gram and turmeric paste, wear new clothes, seek blessings from the elders and exchange gifts. A Gamusa (an indispensable and symbolic piece of cloth) is presented to each other as a token of friendship, love, and warmth with each other. A traditional Bihu dance is performed by both men and women, which is the high point of the festival.
  • The third day is called Gosai (God’s) Bihu. People worship idols after cleaning their homes.
  • The rest of the celebrations take place on Kutum Bihu, Senehi Bihu, Chera Bihu and Mela Bihu. Sweet dishes that include pitha (rice cake), laru/ladoo (made of rice and coconut or black sesame seeds), and savoury dishes like khaar and xaak make for an essential part of the festivity.

Notably, there are three Bihu festivals in year namely – Rongali Bihu or Bohag Bihu, Bhugali (Magh Bihu) and Kangali (Kati Bihu) marking the distinctive phase in the farming calendar.




 Kaati Bihu


 Much duller than other two festival, praying for good

Harvest. Granaries are empty

 Maagh Bihu


 Harvest festival. Granaries are full

 Bohaag/ Rongali Bihu


 Assamese New Year & Spring festival





Volcanic Vortex Rings

Vortex rings are generated when gas, predominantly water vapour, is released rapidly through a vent in the crater. 



CDP-SURAKSHA, acronym for "System for Unified Resource Allocation, Knowledge, and Secure Horticulture Assistance," is a digital platform initiated by the government. It facilitates instant subsidy disbursal to horticulture farmers, leveraging e-RUPI vouchers from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI).


DTAA (Double taxation Avoidance Agreement)

A Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) is a pact signed by two nations that encourages capital investment, trade in goods and services, and other economic activities between the two nations by preventing International Double Taxation.


Small Finance Bank

Small finance banks (SFBs) are a type of niche bank in India that offer basic banking services, such as accepting deposits and lending. SFBs often have lower minimum balance requirements for savings and current accounts than traditional banks. This makes it easier for people with limited financial resources to open and maintain an account.


Protecting Power

A protecting power is a neutral state that is not involved in a conflict. A party to the conflict designates a protecting power, and the enemy party accepts it. The protecting power agrees to carry out the functions assigned to it under international humanitarian law.



Plagiarism is the act of using someone else's words, ideas, or information without giving them proper credit.


Blood Money

Blood money is money paid to the family of a person who has been killed, often by a killer or the killer's clan. It can also refer to the reward for bringing a criminal to justice. These fines protect the offender or their family from the injured family's vengeance.


The Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2023, released in mid-January, offers critical insights into the educational landscape of India, particularly focusing on the foundational skills of adolescents aged 14-18. Amidst concerns regarding learning outcomes and career aspirations, ASER provides valuable data to inform policy interventions and improve educational outcomes for youth across the country.

Data Insights from ASER 2023

  • Foundation Skills of 14-18 Year Olds: ASER 2023 revealed that 26% of 14-18 year olds in rural areas cannot read a standard two level text in their regional language, indicating concerning learning outcomes.
  • Trajectory of Foundational Learning: Historical data analysis indicates that without acquiring foundational skills in primary grades, children are unlikely to develop them later. This highlights the critical importance of early interventions in education.
  • Enrollment and Reading Skills: ASER data suggests that a significant portion of 14-18 year olds lacking basic reading skills are either enrolled in lower standards or not attending school at all, emphasizing the need for interventions beyond school-based programs.

Addressing Past Failures and Encouraging Return to Education:

  • Attendance Challenges: NSSO data from 2017-18 indicates low attendance rates in secondary grades, suggesting that even enrolled children may not regularly attend school. This underscores the importance of strategies to encourage and facilitate school attendance.
  • Reading Improvement Programs: While focusing on school-based reading programs is crucial, ASER highlights the necessity of empowering children to return to school and fostering a positive environment for reading outside of school.
  • Role of Community Libraries: Establishing and managing community libraries can create supportive environments for reading, requiring committed individuals to lead and nurture reading habits in children and adults alike.

Youth Aspirations and Career Development:

  • Educational Aspirations: ASER findings indicate that a majority of surveyed youth aspire for at least a college education, with variations in career aspirations between genders. Mentorship and support are crucial for youth to evaluate and fulfill their aspirations effectively.
  • Career Options and Perceptions: ASER reveals prominent career choices among surveyed youth, with insights into the perception of vocational education. Positive experiences from context-driven vocational courses highlight the potential for aspirational value in non-traditional career paths.
  • Leveraging Technology for Skill Development: With increasing smartphone access among youth, there is an opportunity to leverage digital technology for educational purposes. Collaboration between educational institutions, industries, and professional groups can provide relevant resources and guidance to youth pursuing their career goals.
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The increasing incidence of human-wildlife interactions in India has sparked debates surrounding wildlife rescue operations and the ethical considerations involved. With the blurry lines between rescue and capture, it becomes imperative to analyze the implications of such interventions on wildlife conservation efforts and human-wildlife coexistence.

  • Definition and Nuanced Challenges: While 'rescue' implies saving animals from danger, distinguishing it from 'capture' poses nuanced challenges. The escalating human-wildlife interactions in India necessitate proactive solutions beyond reactive capture and relocation strategies.
  • Complexity of Wildlife Capture: Successful capture operations involve intricate processes such as chemical immobilization and expert coordination. While genuine rescue scenarios involve animals in immediate danger, the mere presence of wildlife outside perceived habitats doesn't always warrant capture.
  • Effective Conflict Management: An effective response to human-wildlife conflict entails mitigating tense situations without resorting to capture or relocation. Proactive measures and community engagement play crucial roles in managing conflicts sustainably.

Advice on 'Capture' that is Ignored

  • Guidelines for Conflict Management: Central government guidelines discourage the capture of wildlife based solely on sightings and advocate preventive measures. However, in practice, these guidelines are often disregarded, leading to unintended consequences such as animal deaths or displacement.
  • Case Examples: Instances of misguided capture operations, such as the relocation of elephants or leopards, highlight the repercussions of ignoring expert advice. The narrative of every capture being labeled as a rescue obscures the ethical considerations and may lead to adverse outcomes.
  • Impact on Wildlife Welfare: The indiscriminate capture and relocation of wildlife, including snakes, can result in physical trauma, stress, and compromised survival chances. Such interventions exacerbate human-wildlife conflicts rather than resolving them.

The Karnataka Example

  • Proactive Conflict Mitigation: The Karnataka Forest Department exemplifies proactive approaches to conflict resolution, emphasizing early warning systems, community education, and improved waste management. These strategies aim to prevent conflicts before they escalate, fostering harmonious coexistence.
  • Considerations for Relocation: Relocating wild animals carries significant ecological and welfare implications, disrupting ecosystems and imposing stress on animals. Ethical interventions should prioritize the welfare of both humans and wildlife, ensuring sustainable outcomes.
  • Holistic Approach to Conservation: Long-term conservation goals necessitate a holistic view of communities, integrating human and non-human animals. By prioritizing proactive measures and ethical interventions, conservation efforts can achieve greater success while fostering harmony between humans and wildlife.
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The Asian Development Bank's (ADB) revised forecast for India's GDP growth underscores the importance of trade policy simplification to enhance export potential. Amidst projections of economic expansion, addressing trade challenges and streamlining regulations becomes crucial for sustained growth.

Key Highlights

  • GDP Growth Forecast: The ADB revised India's GDP growth forecast for the fiscal year, citing robust investment and expectations of rural economic recovery. Despite optimistic projections, concerns persist regarding the pace of growth and its sustainability.
  • Global Risks: The ADB highlighted global risks, including a potential rise in oil prices and high interest rates in the West, which could adversely impact India's economy. The vulnerability of the rupee to Western interest rates underscores the need for proactive risk management.
  • Structural Reforms: The absence of significant structural reforms and controversies surrounding national income data raise questions about the reliability of reported growth figures. Economic growth without concurrent reforms poses challenges to long-term sustainability.

Simplification of Trade Rules to Boost Exports:

  • Export Promotion Strategies: Simplifying trade rules and creating conducive policy environments are essential to enhance export competitiveness. The ADB's recommendation to establish large-scale special economic zones aligns with the goal of boosting exports and integrating with global supply chains.
  • Logistics Infrastructure Improvement: Addressing logistics infrastructure deficiencies is critical for facilitating trade and reducing transaction costs. Enhancing connectivity and streamlining logistical operations can improve India's competitiveness in global markets.
  • Global Supply Chain Integration: Amidst disruptions in global trade routes, India must prioritize efforts to integrate with global supply chains. Enhancing resilience and agility in supply chain management can mitigate risks and capitalize on emerging trade opportunities.
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