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UPSC Daily Current Affairs : 12-May-2020

Topic Covered :

  1. Right to Religion : SC explains reference to larger bench

  2. Trade unions may knock at ILO’s door

  3. Aarogya Setu data protocol norms issued 

  4. NAL makes ventilator for non-ICU COVID-19 cases

  5. Incredibly rare new Super-Earth planet discovered



  • Why in news? SC explained in a judgment, why the Bench decided to go ahead and examine “larger issues” of religious freedom across multiple faiths in connection with the Sabarimala review.


  • A nine-judge Bench of the Supreme Court declared that superior courts enjoy untrammelled power to take up any cause to do complete justice.

  • On November 14 last year, a five-judge Bench led by then Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi did not complete its assigned task of reviewing the court’s original Sabarimala judgment of 2018, which allowed women of every age to enter and worship at the temple.

  •  Instead, it had framed “larger issues” concerning essential religious practices of various religions and clubbed other pending cases on subjects as varied as female genital mutilation among Dawoodi Bohras to entry of Parsi women who married inter-faith into the fire temple and Muslim women into mosques and referred them all to a larger Bench. 

Objections to reference to larger bench :

  • Several parties raised objections before the nine-judge Bench about the reference. They questioned how a Bench sitting in a limited review jurisdiction assumed powers to frame new questions of law. 

  • The lawyers had argued that the Gogoi Bench should have decided the Sabarimala review petitions first before referring any questions of law to a larger Bench. 

  • Objections were raised on how the Gogoi Bench chose to rope in unconnected religious issues in the Sabarimala review.

  •  On Monday, the 29-page judgment of the Bench dismissed objections to its powers of reference.

Source : Hindu ( )


Why in news?

  • Ten central trade unions on Monday said they were considering lodging a complaint with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) against the “anti-worker” changes in the labour laws in some States, which they said was at the “instance of the Central government”.


  • In a joint statement, they said the recent blanket exemption given to establishments from the employer’s obligations under several labour laws for three years by the Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh governments was a retrograde and anti-worker move. 

  • Both the states have removed several labour laws through the ordinance route. The Gujarat government was also reportedly working on a similar exemption.

  • This move was the second phase of anti-worker policies after six State governments increased the working hours from eight to 12 hours

  • Central trade unions consider these moves as an inhuman crime and brutality on the working people, besides being gross violation of the Right to Freedom of Association [ILO Convention 87], Rights to Collective Bargaining [ILO Convention 98] and also the internationally accepted norm of eight hour working day – espoused by core conventions of ILO. The ILO Convention 144 in regard to tripartism has also been undermined by the government

  • Tripartism : Tripartism can be understood as policy of decision making related to industrial relations to where all the three key players i.e. employers ,workers and governments plays an equal and fair role.

Source : Hindu ( )


Why in news?

  • The Aarogya Setu Data Access and Knowledge Sharing Protocol, 2020, that lays down the guidelines for collection, processing, storage and sharing of “anonymised” data was issued.


  • Data of nearly 13,000 Aarogya Setu App users who have tested positive for COVID-19 have so far been transferred to the server for health intervention

  • Privacy protection was the primary consideration while developing the app. It stores an encrypted signature when the user comes in proximity with other registered devices. This interaction information is not pushed to the server unless the user tests positive.

  • The encrypted data of all users, stored in their devices, got deleted automatically in 30 days. Data of the users who undergo tests were kept for 45 days and for those who had tested positive, it was stored in the server till 60 days from the day they recovered from the illness.

  • Every app user was assigned a unique randomised anonymous device ID. All communications between two devices and between the device and the server was done using that ID. No personal detail was used or shared with anyone.

  • The location data was used in case the person tested positive, only to map places the user visited in the past 14 days, for sanitisation and testing of people to prevent further spread.

  • The location data was used in case the person tested positive, only to map places the user visited in the past 14 days, for sanitisation and testing of people to prevent further spread.

  • Demographic data of an individual, collected by the NIC, will be retained for as long as the Protocol remains in force or if the individual requests that it be deleted, for a maximum of 30 days from such request, whichever is earlier.

Source : Hindu ( )


Why in news?

  • The National Aerospace Laboratories, Bengaluru, on Monday said it had developed its version of BiPAP, a non-invasive breathing support device, for the use of non-critical non-ICU cases of COVID-19.


The premier aerospace lab of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research said its team of doctors and specialists used a spinoff aerospace technology to come out with the device.

The portable ventilator, named SwasthVayu, was developed in a record 36 days.

This is ideal for treating COVID-19 patients in wards, makeshift hospitals, dispensaries and at home in the current Indian scenario.

Talks have been initiated with public and private industries to be production partners of NAL. It has also begun the process of seeking regulatory approvals.

NAL said its machine was simple to use. It was cost-effective, compact and configured mostly with indigenous components. 

Source : Hindu ( )


Why in news?

  • Astronomers at the University of Canterbury (UC) have discovered new ‘one in a million’ Super-Earth planet towards the center of the galaxy. The planet is one of just a handful that has been found with both size and orbit equivalent to that of Earth.


  • The planet would have a mass somewhere between that of Earth and Neptune.

  • It would orbit at a location between Venus and Earth from the parent star.

  • The host star is expected to have a smaller mass than our Sun, the planet would have a ‘year’ of approximately 617 days.

  • The microlensing effect is rare, with only about one in a million stars in the galaxy being affected at any given time. Furthermore, this type of observation does not repeat, and the probabilities of catching a planet at the same time are extremely low.

  • Microlensing effect : Microlensing is based on the gravitational lens effect. A massive object (the lens) will bend the light of a bright background object (the source). This can generate multiple distorted, magnified, and brightened images of the background source.

Source : Tech Explorist ( )

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