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22nd December 2021

No.Topic NamePrelims/Mains
1.    Details of the Special Category Status given to statesPrelims & Mains
2.    About the Fishermen Issue between India & Sri LankaPrelims & Mains
3.    Word ‘Anti National’ not mentioned in any of the Indian StatutePrelims & Mains
4.    About the Reservation in the Indian ConstitutionPrelims & Mains
5.    About The Albino Indian Flapshell TurtlePrelims & Mains




Topic – Federalism

  • What does it mean to be in a Special Category:
  • The Constitution does not contain a provision for SCS; instead, the federal government provides financial aid to states that are at a disadvantage in comparison to others. The Gadgil formula (which determined Central assistance to states) was authorised in 1969, and the notion of SCS was born.
  • The following are some important guidelines for obtaining SCS status:
  • It’s likely that the country is economically behind, with inadequate infrastructure.
  • The states must be situated in hilly, difficult terrain.
  • They should be sparsely populated with a sizable tribal population.
  • It should be strategically located near other countries’ borders.
  • Benefits provided to states under the SCS Status:
  • The central government covers 90% of state spending on all centrally sponsored initiatives and external aid, while the remaining 10% is granted to the state as a zero-interest loan.
  • Preferential treatment when it comes to receiving cash from the government.
  • Excise duty reductions to entice businesses to the state.
  • Special category states receive 30% of the federal government’s gross budget.
  • Debt-swapping and debt-relief programmes are available to these states.
  • To encourage investment, states with special category status are excluded from customs duty, corporate tax, income tax, and other taxes.
  • If a special category state has money left over at the end of a fiscal year, it does not lapse and can be carried over to the next fiscal year.
  • Source – The Hindu – 22/12/21 – Page Number 5



Topic – International Relations

  • What causes tensions between Indian Fishermen & Sri Lankan Navy:
  • First, the marine border between the two countries is not well defined. In the Palk Bay region, for example, the distance between the two countries is relatively short. It ranges from 16 to 45 kilometres. As a result, using the 12 nautical mile threshold is challenging in this case.
  • Second, Katchatheevu Island’s Problems: In 1974 and 1976, India and Sri Lanka signed two agreements to define the International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL). Tamil Nadu fisherman, on the other hand, are refusing to accept the accords. For a variety of causes, including
  • “Their consultation was not taken into account at the signing of the agreement, and Katchatheevu is a sovereign region of India,” the fishermen claim.
  • Prior to the accords, Tamil Nadu fisherman utilised the island to sort their fish, dry their nets, and so on. While returning, they utilised the dry net to catch fish once more.
  • The island was added to the Sri Lankan side of the maritime boundary after the agreement. Tamil Nadu fishermen’s fishing grounds have been reduced as a result of this.
  • All of these circumstances contributed to Indian fishermen crossing the border frequently.
  • They are frequently apprehended or their fishing nets are destroyed by the Sri Lankan Navy.
  • Third, Tamil Nadu fishermen employ motorised trawlers for bottom trawling. Bottom trawling, on the other hand, is illegal in Sri Lanka, according to the Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Act.
  • The way forward:
  • First and foremost, Indian fishermen must phase out bottom trawling tactics as soon as possible.
  • It would not only strengthen bilateral ties, but it will also help to protect the environment.
  • To attain the goal, the government can provide incentives and engage in persuasion strategies for fishers.
  • Second, the Blue Revolution Scheme must be expedited by the government. The Scheme will provide Rs 1,500 crore over a period of time to convert bottom trawling boats into deep-sea liners. Deep-sea liners will be used by fishermen for deep-sea fishing.
  • Third, both countries can work on one of the two proposals for the Katchatheevu island. as an example.
  • Both governments can allow licenced fishermen to fish within specific regions on a “lease in perpetuity” (lease forever) basis. Permitting both country and coastal fisherman to fish within 5 nautical miles of IMBL, for example.
  • Fourth, India and Sri Lanka can cooperate together to establish ferry services.
  • In the long run, this will increase people-to-people connections and lessen conflict.
  • Source – The Hindu – 22/12/21 – Page Number 1



Topic – Indian Constitution

  • Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai told the Lok Sabha on Tuesday, December 21, that the term “anti-national” was not defined in statutes or the Constitution, but was introduced in the latter during the Emergency in 1976 and withdrawn the following year.
  • According to him, the term was added to the Constitution by the then-Congress leadership in 1976 through a constitutional amendment.
  • Rai was responding to a question from AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi, who wanted to know if the government has defined the term “anti-national” in any legislation, rules, or other legal enactment in the country.
  • He also wanted to know if the Supreme Court had set any standards for dealing with offences involving “anti-national” activities.
  • Source – The Hindu – 22/12/21 – Page Number 1



  • Topic – Indian Constitution
  • Why Reservation is given in India:
  • The reservation is being built to address the communities’ historic oppression, inequity, and discrimination and to provide them with a home.
  • Its goal is to make good on the constitution’s guarantee of equality.
  • The primary goal of India’s reservation system is to improve the social and educational status of poor populations, hence improving their quality of life.
  • What are the clauses of the Constitution that pertain to the reservation:
  • Reservation for Scheduled Castes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) in federal and state legislatures is addressed in Part XVI of the Indian Constitution.
  • The President’s constitutional right to appoint commissions to examine and recommend remedies for the welfare of the SC and ST sectors.
  • Reservation privileges are extended to socially and educationally backward classes under Article 15(4) and 16(4) of the Constitution.
  • What are the benefits of reservation:
  • Historical injustice: In India, caste-based quota is a requirement due to historical neglect and injustice that has been perpetrated on underprivileged communities.
  • Reservation creates a level playing field since it is difficult for those who have been historically deprived of education, skills, and economic mobility to suddenly compete with others who have had those resources for generations.
  • Meritocracy vs. Equality: While meritocracy is vital, it is meaningless without equality. The caste-based reservation also helped to close the gap between upper and lower castes.
  • Reservations did not affect the efficiency of administration, but they did improve the quality, according to a study. The best example is Indian Railways, where the number of SC/ST staff is higher, and the results are better.
  • What is the ruling of the Court on the reservation issue:
  • The Supreme Court ruled in the Indira Sawhney case of 1992 that total reservation for SC/ST and other backward classes or special categories should not exceed 50%. As a result, the Maharashtra government’s decision following the passage of the bill is likely to be challenged in court.
  • In 2014, the Maharashtra government gave the Marathas 16 percent reservation. The Bombay High Court, however, stayed the reservation.
  • The Supreme Court ruled in 2017 that quotas in jobs and education in Rajasthan had exceeded the 50% limit and could not be expanded any further.
  • In addition, the Supreme Court is hearing a case challenging Tamil Nadu’s reservation policy.
  • Source – The Hindu – 22/12/21 – Page Number 3


Prelims Specific Topic:

  • The Indian flapshell turtle is a freshwater turtle that can be found in a variety of states.
  • The moniker “flap-shelled” comes from the fact that the plastron has femoral flaps. When the limbs retreat into the shell, these flaps of skin cover them.
  • With a carapace length of up to 350 mm, it is a small soft-shell turtle.
  • Lissemys punctata is the scientific name for this plant.
  • They can be found in Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh (Drainages of the Indus and Ganges), and Myanmar (Irrawaddy and Salween Rivers).
  • They reside in rivers, streams, marshes, ponds, lakes, irrigation canals, and tanks, where the water is shallow, quiet, and often stagnant.
  • Because of their proclivity to burrow, these turtles prefer waterways with sand or mud bottoms.
  • Vulnerable according to the IUCN Red List.
  • They are included in Appendix II of the Wildlife (Protection) Act of 1972
  • They are also included in Schedule I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.
  • Threats:
  • Turtles are imported and slaughtered for their alleged aphrodisiac effects, animal feed, leather made from their skins, medicines made from their blood, and fishing bait.
  • Turtle flesh and pharmaceuticals are also produced.
  • Conservation Measures Taken:
  • KURMA App:
  • It comes with a digital field guide that covers 29 different species of Indian freshwater turtles and tortoises.
  • It was created in partnership with the Turtle Survival Alliance-India and the Wildlife Conservation Society-India by the Indian Turtle Conservation Action Network (ITCAN).
  • Every year on May 23rd, World Turtle Day is commemorated.
  • Source – The Hindu – 22/12/21 – Page Number 5

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