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MAINS Q/A 07-05-2018

Q1.Throw light on WHO report on air pollution?

WHO report on air pollution:-

  • The report highlights not only how widespread air pollution is in urban India, but also how deficient air quality monitoring is. The report, which summarised 2016 data for 4,300 cities, ranks 14 Indian cities among the 20 most polluted ones globally.
  • Pollution-choked cities have only one PM 2.5 monitoring station each, while Delhi has several.
  • Air pollution is not a problem of large metropolises alone, even though they have traditionally been the focus of mitigation efforts
  • In 2016 alone around 4.2 million people died owing to outdoor air pollution, while 3.8 million people succumbed to dirty cooking fuels such as wood and cow dung. About a third of these deaths occurred in Southeast Asian countries, which include India.

India’s problems :-

  • Rural India:-
    • As the recently published draft National Clean Air Programme noted, there are currently no air pollution monitoring stations in rural India.
    • This does not mean outdoor air pollution is not a problem here. Studies have shown that ozone levels are higher in rural areas, as is pollution from insecticide use and crop-burning.
  • Lack of monitoring:-
    • Only 303 cities out of 6,166 census cities and towns that is a mere five per cent are monitored for pollution.
    • Of the 303, only 57 cities have continuous real-time monitoring stations.
    • The rest follow manual monitoring that does not allow daily reporting of real-time air quality data.
    • For the manual monitoring stations, there is simply no way of trusting the data as there is no transparency about when that data is collected, whether it is collected daily, et al.
  • Health impact:-
    • 2017 state level Global Disease Burden report shows that air pollution has moved up the ranks as a major killer in nearly all states across India
    • The 35-60 age group is the most vulnerable to non-communicable diseases and has witnessed increased vulnerability to air pollution.
    • While air pollution is hurting the country’s exchequer, it’s also associated with certain cancers, lower birth weight, premature birth, strokes and respiratory disease.
  • Lack of policy:-
    • There is little evidence that either the central or Delhi government has any effective policy strategy for air pollution.
    • India’s political inefficiency is making regional air pollution a nearly intractable problem.
  • Lack of coordination:-
    • Although the states of Haryana and Punjab have banned farmers from burning straw, implementation has been minimal.
    • Policy coordination is also weak across states governed by rival political parties.
      • For example, the leaders of Delhi and Haryana have publicly clashed about who is to blame for air pollution. They have also failed to hold discussions about the problem or to find feasible solutions.


Q2. What was the outcome of the Third war of Panipat?

It was a significant battle from the historical perspective. The fall of Maratha forces led to their collapse in entire Northern region. It took them 10 years to regain this position in North India when they retaliated under the command of Madhavrao Peshwa. The lack of resources and support from allies like Rajputs, Sikhs, and Jats led to this downfall of Marathas against the large number of soldiers and united armies of Abdali.

Most of the Maratha warriors were imprisoned and slaughtered in cold blood by Afghani soldiers. This battle was a huge loss to the Marathas as around 30, 000 to 70, 000 of their brave men were killed post the battle which led to total casualties at more than one lakh. Thousands of women and children in Maratha camp were caught and killed in the aftermath by Afghanis.

Most of the courageous leaders of this battle including Sadashivrao Bhau, Vishwasrao Bhau, Ibrahim Khan Gardi, and Jankoji Scindia were killed in this battle.

Ahmad shah Abdali became the ruler of North India despite his huge loss of men in this battle. However, lately, his forces became restless in India and he had to face certain rebellion back in Afghanistan. This made him return back to his place though he declared Shah Alam II as emperor in India.

The Sikhs and Jats benefitted by not participating in this battle. In later parts of history, this battle led to the successful invasion by British in India. They took full charge of this destabilization in the country and started spanning their forces here.

In this way, this saga of chivalry of Marathas, disloyalty of Rohillas, and strategies of Abdali came to an end in Panipat to become a part of its blood bathed history.


Q3. Even though the Extremists had rightly emphasized the role of the masses the need to go beyond propaganda and agitation, demanded self- sacrifice from the youth they had failed to find forms through which all these ideas could find practical expression Comment


Even though the Extremists had rightly emphasized the role of the masses the need to go beyond propaganda and agitation, demanded self- sacrifice from the youth they had failed to find forms through which all these ideas could find practical expression. The Extremists waffling failed to impress the youth who decided to take recourse to physical force. Failed to provide a positive outlet for their revolutionary energies and to educate them on the political difference between an evolution based on the activity of the masses and a revolutionary feeling based on individual action, however heroic. They inspired the people to cast off the yoke of slavery and be prepared for any kind of sacrifice for the cause of freedom. They embraced death cheerfully and were not scared of the physical and mental injuries inflicted upon them by the cruel rulers. They decided to organize the assassination of unpopular British officials. Such assassinations would strike terror into the hearts of the rulers, amuse the patriotic instincts of the people, inspire them and remove the fear of authority from their minds.


  • International examples:-
    • Ras Behari Bose, Chander Shekhar Azad, Lala Hardyal M.A., Madan Lal Dhingra and . S. Ajit Singh succeeded in expanding the movement of freedom to other countries as well.
    • Barindra Ghosh was sent to Paris to learn the science of Bomb Making and here he came in touch were Madam Bhikaji Cama
    • Madam Cama was already associated with the India House and the Paris India Society.
    • Shyamji Krishnavarma:-
      • He started a monthly journal, the Indian sociologist; an organ of freedom struggle of India in 1905.
      • Shyamji established the Indian Home Rule society and a hostel for Indian students living in London, popularly known as the Indian House.
    • The Indian Independence Committee in Berlin
      • After the outbreak of the First World War, Hardyal and other Indians abroad moved to Germany and set up the Indian independence committee at Berlin.
      • The policy and activities of the Berlin committee and the Ghadar party had greatly influenced the revolutionaries of Bengal.
      • The committee planned to bring about a general insurrection in India and for this purpose foreign arms were to be sent to India from abroad; expatriated Indians were to return to mother country, where they were to be joined by Indian soldiers and by the waiting revolutionaries.
    • Ghadar movement aimed at bringing an armed revolution in India and brought out a weekly called Ghadar.
    • Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose orga­nized Azad Hind Fauj and gave us the slogan ‘Give me blood, I will give you me freedom.
  • India:-
    • Very soon secret societies of revolutionaries came up all over the country. The most famous and long lasting being Anushilan Samiti and Jugantar.
    • Their activities took two forms
      • The assassination of oppressive officials and informers and traitors from their own ranks
      • Dacoities to raise funds for purchase of arms etc.
    • In 1924, Hindustan Republican Army (HRA) was founded at Kanpur by Sachin Sanyal, Jogesh Chandra Chaterjee with an aim to organise an armed revolution to overthrow the colonial government. The most important action of HRA was the Kakori robbery in which official railway cash was looted.
    • In 1928 Bhagat Singh, Azad and Rajguru shot dead Saunders, the police official responsible for the lathi charge on Lala Lajpat Rai in Lahore. Sardar Bhagat Singh and his companions faced brutalities of Britishers boldly, cheerfully and willingly for the cause of India. They gave the nationalist movement a new turn
    • In 1929, Batukeshwar Dutt and Bhagat Singh were asked to throw a bomb in the Central Assembly against the passage of the Public Safety Bill and Trade Disputes Bill


  • Revolutionary terrorism gradually petered out.
  • Lacked a mass base
  • Despite remarkable heroism, the individual revolutionaries, organized in small secret groups, could not withstand suppression by the still strong colonial state.
  • The revolutionaries mainly came from the urban middle class intellegentsia out of touch with the peasants and workers.
  • They lacked a common plan and central leadership.
  • The British government on its part followed a ruthless and repressive policy towards them.



Q4. What are the provisions of GDPR and how will it impact India?

GDPR prescribes how companies that deal with data of EU citizens could handle and store it with third parties.

The three objectives mentioned in the GDPR are:-

  • Protection of natural persons when their data is processed
  • Protection of their fundamental rights and freedoms with respect to data protection
  • Freedom of movement of personal data for processing purpose.

The Regulation confers protection to data subject as a matter of right.

The penalties for not doing so could be 4% of the erring company’s global annual turnover or €20 million (about Rs 160 crore), whichever is more.

How is it a respite in the light of growing privacy concerns :-


  • GDPR also sets new data protection standards in place, which is likely to be adopted by other countries as well.
  • GDPR will be the most comprehensive dedicated legislation on data protection ever formulated.
  • GDPR goes further than the principles of data retention, lawful purpose and necessity of information mentioned under the IT Act.
  • Additional principles mentioned in the GDPR are data integrity, protection from unlawful processing or damage and fairness and transparency in processing.
  • GDPR also provides for regular revision of data collected for achieving data accuracy
  • Significantly, the principle of accountability is a notable feature of GDPR. Under this, the controller has been given the responsibility to uphold the principles mentioned and to demonstrate compliance with them.
  • Definition of consent has been considerably expanded under Article 4(11) of the GDPR.
  • Meaning of valid consent and demonstration of a valid consent are important elements of the GDPR.
  • The General Data Protection Regulation (or better known as GDPR) will give consumers stronger rights by strengthening the control they have over their personal data. For European residents, GDPR actively empowers consumers to keep businesses in check.


Biggest problem firms face while trying to comply with GDPR is the lack of clearly-defined guidelines.

There is no single authority to certify the level of compliance. This leaves a lot of subjectivity and hence can cause confusion amongst smaller companies that may not have easy access to the right legal entities.

65% of organizations are still not confident that their GDPR data will stay within the EU.

Recently UK government report found that less than half of businesses are aware of the upcoming GDPR laws.

Confusion still reigns over the GDPR’s right to be forgotten.

Only 55% maintain audit trails for data consents, collections updates, and deletion.

Impact of these regulations on India :-


Many Indian companies will have to comply with GDPR as they have access to or hold personal data of EU citizens.

While most companies are still in the initial phase to set up compliance frameworks, it is worrying to see that a majority are not really concerned about the law.

Europe is an important market for start-ups operating in the business-to-business (B2B) segment and mobile gaming. Hefty fines and strict regulations could hinder a firm’s operations or lead to a complete shutdown, especially of start-ups.

GDPR is enforceable even if companies do not have an office in the EU or do not operate in the EU, but handle private data of EU citizens.

Due to the differences in regulatory practices, the legal parameters have been ambiguous which make compliance more complex and difficult to achieve. The Indian government has concerns with regard to the following issues:

The Indian IT/BPO industry requires an increased free flow of data to be transferred from the EU

The regulation will limit EU companies outsourcing options which will result in obvious opportunity losses for businesses in India

India’s relatively weak data protection laws make India less competitive as outsourcing markets in this space when other economies are updating their regulatory practices to ensure seamless inter-state operability

Largely inflexible, GDPR reduces the extent to which businesses can assess risks and make decisions when it comes to transferring data outside the EU

The regulations target service providers directly who will have to face high costs such as investing “cyber insurance” whilst adopting new technology. Non-compliance will result in severe penalties.



Indian companies that have operations in EU are looking to revise contracts with their vendors and customers to include GDPR.

By drawing upon the regulatory practices of GDPR, India could develop an over-arching data protection regime that would extend to all government and business practices as this will only boost growth in the long run.

GDPR is an excellent opportunity for India to update its regulatory practices and effectively implement the fundamental right to privacy.  The IT/BPO sector should use this as a stepping stone to move up the value chain by strengthening its automation portfolio and make the industry more competitive in the global market.


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