18th December 2021

No. Topic Name Prelims/Mains
1.    What is the Pegasus Controversy Prelims & Mains
2.    About the Competition Commission of India Prelims & Mains
3.    Details of the CAQM Prelims & Mains
4.    Details of the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act Prelims & Mains
5.    About the Types of Writs in India Prelims & Mains




Topic – Cyber-Security related issues

  • What exactly is the problem:
  • The petitioners’ argument in Supreme Court is that spyware has been used, or is likely to be used, in breach of citizens’ right to privacy.
  • Background:
  • New revelations corroborate the continuous usage of the spyware Pegasus, which is sold to governments all around the world by an Israeli corporation. Pegasus, like the phones it targets, has reportedly been updated and now includes new spying features.
  • What exactly is Pegasus:
  • It’s a spyware programme created by the NSO Group, an Israeli company.
  • Spyware listens in on people’s conversations on mobile phones.
  • Pegasus operates by delivering an exploit link to the target user, who then clicks on it, allowing the malware or code to be loaded on the user’s phone.
  • Once Pegasus is installed, the attacker has complete control over the phone of the target victim.
  • What can Pegasus accomplish:
  • Pegasus may “return the target’s personal information, such as passwords, contact lists, calendar events, text messages, and live phone calls from popular mobile messaging apps.”
  • The camera and microphone on the target’s phone can be turned on to record all activities in the area, broadening the scope of the surveillance.
  • What is a zero-click attack, and how does it work:
  • A zero-click attack allows viruses such as Pegasus to take control of a device without the need for human intervention or error.
  • So, if the objective is the system itself, all understanding about how to avoid phishing attacks or which links not to click is useless.
  • The majority of these assaults target software that receives data before determining whether or not it is trustworthy, such as an email client.
  • Source – The Hindu – 18/12/21 – Page Number 1



Topic – Statutory & Non-Statutory Bodies

  • India’s Competition Commission:
  • It is a statutory entity of the Indian government charged with executing the Competition Act, 2002 throughout the country and preventing anti-competitive acts.
  • The Commission’s goals are as follows:
  • To avoid practises that have a negative impact on competition.
  • To encourage and maintain market competition.
  • To safeguard the interests of customers.
  • To ensure that trade is unrestricted.
  • The commission’s responsibilities are as follows:
  • It is the Commission’s responsibility to eradicate anticompetitive activities, promote and sustain competition, safeguard consumers’ interests, and ensure free trade in India’s marketplaces.
  • The Commission is also mandated to provide an opinion on competition concerns in response to a referral from a statutory entity formed under any law, as well as to engage in competition advocacy, raise public awareness, and provide competition training.
  • The Act on Competition:
  • The Competition Act, 2002, as amended by the Competition (Amendment) Act, 2007, prohibits anti-competitive agreements, enterprise abuse of dominant position, and regulates combinations (acquisition, acquiring control, and M&A) that have or are likely to have a significant adverse effect on competition in India.
  • Source – The Hindu – 18/12/21 – Page Number 1



Topic – Environmental Conservation related issues

  • About:
  • The Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) is an organisation dedicated to improving air quality.
  • In October 2020, the Commission was established by ordinance for the first time.
  • To make space for the Commission, the former Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority, or EPCA, was dissolved.
  • The Commission will function as a statutory body.
  • The Commission will take the place of bodies like the Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan pollution control boards.
  • Composition:
  • Chairperson: A government official with the level of Secretary or Chief Secretary will preside over the meeting.
  • The chairperson will serve for three years or until he or she reaches the age of 70.
  • It will include representatives from a variety of ministries as well as stakeholder states.
  • Experts from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), and civil society will participate.
  • Functions and powers:
  • It will have the authority to issue directives to these state governments on air pollution issues.
  • It will hear as many complaints as it thinks necessary in order to safeguard and improve the air quality in the NCR and surrounding areas.
  • It will also establish air pollution control guidelines.
  • It will also be responsible for detecting violators, monitoring companies and industries, as well as any other polluting unit in the region, and having the authority to shut them down.
  • It will also have the authority to overturn instructions issued by regional state administrations that may violate pollution standards.
  • Other important elements of the bill include:
  • The act of stubble burning has been decriminalised, and the section that might lead to jail time has been removed.
  • It proposed that anyone who are discovered to be participating in stubble burning, including farmers, pay an environmental restitution cost.
  • Source – The Hindu – 18/12/21 – Page Number 1



Topic – Government Policies & Interventions:

  • About the FCRA:
  • The Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA) of 2010 is a federal law that regulates foreign contributions.
  • Foreign funding of volunteer groups in India is governed by the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA), which is enforced by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
  • Organizations are required to register every five years under the Act.
  • All NGOs registered or granted prior approval under the FCRA must now upload details of foreign contributions received and used every three months on their website or the FCRA website, according to the updated FCRA guidelines.
  • NGOs must now file their annual reports online, and the hard copy version is no longer required. The annual returns must be posted quarterly on the NGO’s website or the home ministry’s FCRA website.
  • Who is eligible to accept foreign contributions:
  • After obtaining registration or previous approval from the Central Government, a person with a specific cultural, economic, educational, religious, or social programme can receive foreign contributions.
  • Who is not eligible to accept foreign contributions:
  • Candidate contesting election
  • Any legislator’s member (MP and MLAs)
  • A political party or one of its office bearers
  • A political organisation is a group of people who work together to achieve a common goal.
  • Editor, owner, printer, or publishers of a registered newspaper. Correspondent, columnist, cartoonist, editor, owner, printer, or publishers of a registered newspaper.
  • A judge, a government employee, or an employee of a corporation or other entity controlled or owned by the government.
  • Association or business that produces or broadcasts audio news, audio visual news, or current affairs programmes over any electronic medium.
  • Any other individuals or organisations that the Central Government has expressly outlawed
  • Source – The Hindu – 18/12/21 – Page Number 8



Topic – Indian Judiciary related issues

  • Under Article 32 of the Indian Constitution, the Supreme Court has the authority to issue writs for the enforcement of any of the fundamental rights bestowed by Part III of the Indian Constitution.
  • As a result, the ability to issue writs is principally intended to ensure that every citizen has access to the Right to Constitutional Remedies.
  • Habeas Corpus, Mandamus, Prohibition, Certiorari, and Quo warranto are the five sorts of Writs:
  • Mandamus: A judicial writ is a legal document that serves as a direction to a lower court or orders someone to undertake a public or statutory duty.
  • A writ of prohibition is a writ that orders a subordinate to stop doing anything that the law forbids. A superior court will frequently issue this writ to a lower court, instructing it not to proceed with a case that does not come under its jurisdiction.
  • Certiorari is a legal process that seeks judicial review of a lower court’s or government agency’s decision.
  • Quowarranto is a prerogative writ that requires the person to whom it is directed to show what authority they have to exercise a right, power, or franchise they claim to have.
  • Habeas Corpus means “you may have the body” in Latin. The writ is used to bring a person who has been held, whether in prison or in private custody, before a court and to have him released if the imprisonment is judged to be unlawful.
  • Source – The Hindu – 18/12/21 – Page Number 8