Given below are the daily current affairs for 06th March 2021. You can take the daily current affairs quiz here for free.
- POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
- INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
SC says new rules to regulate OTT platforms lack teeth
The Supreme Court said that the government’s new rules to regulate OTT (over-the-top) platforms lacked teeth to punish violators or to screen offensive content.
- Justice Ashok Bhushan pointed out that the newly announced Information Technology [Guidelines for Intermediaries and Digital Media Ethics Code] Rules of 2021 are merely guidelines and did not contain provisions for punishment.
- The court order said the new rules were more in the nature of guidelines and there was no effective mechanism for screening or to take appropriate action against violators.
- The Solicitor General agreed to consider drafting new regulations or even legislation to address the concern raised by the court.
- The Bench ordered that the regulations/legislation, once done, should be placed before the court.
‘OPEC+ move to hit recovery’
OPEC+ agreed not to increase oil supply as they await a more substantial recovery in demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Crude prices rose after the announcement and are up 33% this year.
- The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies as a grouping are known as OPEC+.
- OPEC+ is also referred to as the Vienna group.
- It is a grouping of oil-producing nations, made up of the OPEC members and 10 other non-OPEC members.
- OPEC+ comprises Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Brunei, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Mexico, Oman, Russia, South Sudan and Sudan.
- As one of the largest crude-consuming countries, India is concerned that such actions by producing countries have the potential to undermine consumption-led recovery and more so hurt consumers.
- India, hit hard by the soaring oil prices, urged producers to ease output cuts and help the global economic recovery from the pandemic.
- In India, rising oil prices are posing fiscal challenges, where heavily-taxed retail fuel prices have touched record highs. This is threatening the demand-driven recovery.
- India is the world’s third-biggest oil importer.
- It imports about 84% of its oil and relies on West Asian supplies to meet over three-fifths of its demand.
India reaffirms Lanka defence ties
India sought to reaffirm its strong defence cooperation with Sri Lanka with its participation in a three-day event in Colombo to mark the 70th anniversary of the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF).
- The last time Indian aircraft took part in such an event was in 2001, on the occasion of the SLAF’s 50th year.
- A team of 4 Sarang Advance Light Helicopters, Surya Kiran (Hawks), Tejas Fighter Aircraft, Tejas Trainer and the Dornier Maritime Patrol Aircraft from India were in Sri Lanka to participate in a fly past and acrobatic display event with the SLAF.
India – Sri Lanka defence ties:
- During Sri Lanka’s over three decade-civil war, India played a crucial role, politically and at times, using its military.
- While the controversial Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) presence in Sri Lanka, and ‘Operation Poomalai’ of 1987 when the Indian Air Force dropped food supplies in Jaffna drew criticism from sections, the Indian military’s support was repeatedly acknowledged by Sri Lanka’s national leaders.
- In Sri Lanka’s post-war era, the Indo-Lanka military partnership has focused mostly on training and capacity building.
- In 2020, Indian Navy and Coast Guard personnel helped the Sri Lankan Navy in a crucial fire-fighting operation, when an oil tanker went up in flames, off the island’s east coast.
- Sri Lanka’s strategic location makes it a crucial partner for all countries in the region.
- Over the years, Sri Lanka is known to have maintained strong military ties with several partners in the region and beyond.
- Domestically, its defence sector is accorded high priority by all governments.
Quad to hold leadership summit
What’s in News?
Leaders of Australia, India, Japan and the United States will soon meet virtually for the first-ever summit under the quadrilateral security arrangement.
- Australian Prime Minister said that the four-power security dialogue was central to the U.S. and the Australian point of view of the Indo-Pacific region.
- The Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QSD) or QUAD Group is an informal strategic forum comprising India, Japan, Australia and the United States of America.
Technology for air-to-air missiles tested
What’s in News?
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully carried out a flight demonstration based on Solid Fuel Ducted Ramjet (SFDR) technology from Integrated Test Range, Chandipur, off the Odisha coast.
- Successful demonstration of SFDR technology provides DRDO with a technological advantage, which will enable it to develop long-range air-to-air missiles.
- Only a few countries have this technology.
Solid Fuel Ducted Ramjet (SFDR) technology:
- It is a missile propulsion technology.
- It includes a thrust modulated ducted rocket with a reduced smoke nozzle-less missile booster.
- The thrust modulation in the system is achieved using a hot gas flow controller.
- The system utilises a solid fuelled air-breathing ramjet engine.
- This kind of propulsion system drastically enhances the range with a higher average speed.
- The missiles which use such a system are also able to carry a larger payload due to the absence of an oxidiser.
- Unlike a solid-propellant rocket, the Ramjet takes up oxygen from the atmosphere during flight.
China’s defence budget to cross $200 billion
What’s in News?
China’s defence budget will for the first time cross $200 billion with the government announcing a 6.8% hike in defence spending for 2021.
- This will take China’s defence spending to more than four times India’s $49.75 billion budget, not including pensions.
- The hike is only a slight rise from the 6.6% increase announced in 2020 amid the pandemic, which was the lowest increase in many years.
- The defence budget saw double-digit increases until 2015, and was hiked 7.5% in 2019.
- Red sanders (Pterocarpus santalinus) is known for its rich hue and therapeutic properties.
- The tree is endemic to several districts in Andhra Pradesh and some parts of Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.
- The species was listed in Appendix II of CITES in 1995, and subsequently export of red sanders was prohibited in 2004.
- But, in 2019, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) has revised its export policy to permit the export of red sanders if it is obtained from cultivated land.
- Red Sanders usually grow in the rocky, degraded and fallow lands with Red Soil and hot and dry climate.
- The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has put it under the category of near threatened from earlier endangered species in the Red List.
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