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UPSC Daily Current Affairs | Prelim Bits 01-07-2024

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July 01, 2024

Santhal Hul (Santhal Rebellion), 1855-56

In Jharkhand, June 30 marks the 169th anniversary of the Santhal Hul, one of the earliest peasant uprisings against the British.

  • Santhal Hul of 1855 is an organized revolt against imperialism of British in Jharkhand.
  • Leaders – The revolt is led by
    • 4 brothers - Sidho, Kanho, Chand, and Bhairav Murmu, along with
    • Sisters - Phulo and Jhano.
  • Revolted against - The Santhals also fought against the upper castes, zamindars, darogas, and moneylenders, described by the umbrella term ‘diku’, to safeguard the economic, cultural, and religious aspects of their lives.
  • Reason for the uprising - Certain areas were delimited as ‘Santhal Pargana’ or ‘Damin-i-Koh’ in 1832.
  • It comprises present-day Sahibganj, Godda, Dumka, Deoghar, Pakur, and regions of Jamtara, in present-day Jharkhand.
  • The area is allocated to the Santhals displaced from Birbhum, Murshidabad, Bhagalpur, Barabhum, Manbhum, Palamau, and Chhotanagpur, all areas of the Bengal Presidency.
  • While the Santhals were promised settlement and agriculture in Damin-i-Koh, what followed is the repressive practice of
    • Land-grabbing and
    • Begari (bonded labour) of 2 types - kamioti and harwahi.
  • The Murmu brothers led around 60,000 Santhals against the East India Company and engaged in guerrilla warfare.
  • More than 15,000 Santhals were killed, and 10,000 villages were laid to waste.
  • The British hanged Sidhu to death on August 9, 1855, followed by Kanhu in February 1856.
  • The insurrection ended, but the impact it left is everlasting.
  • Santhal Pargana Tenancy Act, 1876 - In result of this uprising the Santhal Pargana Tenancy Act of 1876 (SPT Act) is enacted by the British.
  • The act prohibits the transfer of Adivasi lands (urban or rural land) to non-Adivasis.
  • The land can only be inherited as per the Act, thus retaining the rights of Santhals to self-govern their land.

Chhotanagpur Tenancy Act, (CNT Act)

  • It is enacted by the British in 1908 a result of the Birsa Movement, allows land transfers within the same caste and certain geographical areas with the approval of the District Collector.
  • This Act also restricts the sale of Adivasi and Dalit land, while allowing land transfers between Adivasi individuals from the same police station and Dalits in the same district.

Reference

The Indian Express | Santhal Hul and the land tenancy Acts

 

Saubhagya scheme (Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana)

The Meghalaya government recently issued notifications for the alleged irregularities in the implementation of the Saubhagya scheme in the state.

  • It is a scheme to ensure electrification (24x7) of all willing households in the country in rural as well as urban areas.
  • Aim
    • Last mile connectivity and electricity connection to all un-electrified households in rural areas;
    • Last mile connectivity and electricity connection to all remaining economically poor un-electrified households in urban areas.
  • Launched in – 2017.
  • Nodal agency - Rural Electrification Corporation Limited (REC).
  • Implemented by - Ministry of Power.
  • Target - The States and Union Territories are required to complete the works of household electrification by the 31st of December 2018 and further extended to March, 2019.
  • Beneficiaries - The beneficiaries for free electricity connections would be identified using Socio Economic and Caste Census (SECC) 2011 data.
  • Non-poor urban households are excluded from this scheme.
  • It is a concurrent program to Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti.

Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti is a scheme designed to provide continuous electricity supply to rural India.

  • Solar for remote areas - Solar Photovoltaic (SPV) based standalone system for un-electrified households located in remote and inaccessible areas.
  • It also includes the Repair and Maintenance (R&M) for 5 years.

References

  1. Hindustan Times | Suabhagya scheme
  2. Vikaspedia | Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana

 

Painted lady Butterfly (Vanessa Cardui)

A recent discovery is made on the painted lady butterflies that travelled 2,600 miles to the French Guiana beach.

  • The painted lady also called as the thistle butterfly, is native to Canada and cannot survive colder climates.
  • Scientific Name - Vanessa cardui.
  • The insect is a champion of long-distance travel, routinely crisscrossing the Sahara on a trek from Europe to sub-Saharan Africa, and covering up to 9,000 miles.
  • Appearance - It has orange wings with black tips. The upper side of the forewings have a pattern of white spots and thick black lines.
  • This is visually similar to the American lady, but it can be distinguished by the four eyespots instead of two on its hindwing.
  • Habitat - This butterfly can be found almost anywhere, from the seashore and town gardens, to the tops of the highest mountains.
  • Distribution – It is one of the world’s most widespread butterflies, but it isn’t found in South America.
  • Diet – It fed on Thistles, the primary food plant of this species.
  • This is one of the few species that can breed in intensive farmland since even these sites typically contain a patch of Thistles.
  •  Breeding They reproduce when conditions are favorable, this includes year round mating in warmer climates.
  • Conservation status - This species is not legally protected in India under any schedules of WildLife (Protection) Act, 1972.

Painted Lady

DNA Metabarcoding allows for simultaneous identification of many taxa within the same sample.

References

  1. The Indian Express | The painted lady (Vanessa cardui)
  2. iNaturalist | Painted Lady

 

Kangaroo Courts

Tajimul Islam, known for presiding over such ‘salishi sabhas’ (kangaroo courts) recently arrested after a video of him whipping a woman and a man surfaced on social media.

  • It is as unofficial court held by a group of people used to refer to proceedings or activities where a judgement is made in a manner that is unfair, biased, and lacks legitimacy.
  • Their decisions are not legally binding.
  • Kangaroo courts first appeared in the United States at the time of the 1849 California Gold Rush, and the term was first used in the southwestern United States.
  • It first appeared in print in 1853 in a Texas book.
  • Some dictionaries say the association with the animal could have a relation to Australians, though the term probably originated in America.
  • Drawbacks of the courts
    • No legality - These informal courts, run by individuals with no legal authority. They operate outside the bounds of the official judicial system.
    • Unfairness - The rule of law gives way to the rule of individuals wielding unchecked power.
    • The procedure here is only conducted as a formality.
    • Lack of Accountability - Judges and decision-makers are frequently not accountable to any higher authority, it is difficult to hold them accountable for any wrongdoing.
    • No appeal - The courts doesn’t allow for appeal against their judgment.
    • Swift and Harsh Punishments - Kangaroo courts frequently impose swift and harsh punishments, often without regard for the gravity of the crime or the circumstances of the accused.
    • Mob Mentality - Rather than pursuing justice, kangaroo courts may be motivated by mob mentality or a desire for vengeance.
  • Examples of kangaroo courts - Lynch mobs, military tribunals that do not follow due process, and workplace tribunals that are set up to target employees unfairly.

Reference

The Indian Express | Kangaroo courts

 

Oropouche Fever

Italy reported its first case of Oropouche fever recently.

  • It is a mosquito-borne disease common in Latin and South America.
  • Caused by - Oropouche virus, which is transmitted most often through the bite of the Culicoides paraensis midge. It is an RNA virus, belonging to the family Bunyaviridae.
  • Transmission - It is transmitted through the bites of infected midges and mosquitos.
  • There is no evidence of human-to-human transmission of the disease.
  • Symptoms - Similar to dengue, and typically start between 4 and 8 days after the bite, includes fever, headaches, pain, chills, joint stiffness, and sometimes nausea and vomiting.
  • Severe clinical presentation is rare, but it may result in aseptic meningitis.
  • Affecting age - Illness can occur in people of any age. Most patients recover in about 7 days.
  • Treatment - There is no specific vaccine or antiviral treatment available for the disease.
  • Outbreaks are periodically reported in Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Panama, Peru, and Trinidad and Tobago. 

Reference

Hindustan Times | What is Oropouche fever?

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