7th February – Prelims Booster

SC firm on opening command posts to women

The Supreme Court has said that a will and a change of mindset on the part of government would definitely see women officers rise to command posts in the Army. There were many services in addition to combat posts.

Issues with women entry in combat roles –

  • The Army said the “physiological limitations” of women officers, lower physical standards of women officers compared to men, prolonged absence due to pregnancy, children’s education, husband’s career prospects, etc, were great challenges for women officers to meet the exigencies of service.
  • Moreover, the “composition of rank and file being male predominantly drawn from the rural background with prevailing societal norms, troops are not yet mentally schooled to accept women officers in command of units”.
  • Officers have to lead from the front. They should be in prime physical condition to undertake combat tasks. Inherent physiological differences between men and women preclude equal physical performance resulting in lower physical standards. Physical capacity of women officers in the Indian Army remain a challenge for command of units.
  • Army units were a “unique all-male environment”. Presence of women officers would require “moderated behaviour”.

Background –

  • In 1992, the Indian Army began inducting women officers in non-medical roles.
  • All wings of the Indian Armed Forces allow women in combat roles (junior ranks) and combat supervisory roles (officers), except Indian Army (inducted for support roles only) and Special Forces of India (trainer role only).
  • Females are not allowed to serve in combat units like the Infantry, the Armoured Corps and Mechanised infantry.
  • Under the Short Service Commission (SSC) scheme, women are allowed to enter Army Service Corps, Ordnance, Education Corps, Judge Advocate General (JAG), Engineers, Signals, Intelligence and Electronics & Mechanical Engineering branches of the Army.
  • Only in certain streams like the Judge Advocate General, Army Education Corps (AEC) and the Military Police, women are given permanent commission at par with male officers.

CPCB pulls up 14 coal plants

The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has pulled up 14 thermal power plants for not complying with a December 31, 2019 deadline to limit sulphur dioxide emissions.

What is the issue?

To limit particulate matter (PM), sulphur dioxide and nitrous oxide emission from thermal plants, India put in place a phased-approach that directs 440 coal-fired units — responsible for about 166,000 MW of power — to put in place measures to limit pollution by December 2022.

About CPCB –

  • The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) of India is a statutory organisation under the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC).
  • It was established in 1974 under the Water (Prevention and Control of pollution) Act, 1974.
  • CPCB is also entrusted with the powers and functions under the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981.
  • It serves as a field formation and also provides technical services to the Ministry of Environment and Forests under the provisions of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
  • It coordinates the activities of the State Pollution Control Boards by providing technical assistance and guidance and also resolves disputes among them.
  • The CPCB has the power to impose steep fines or shut a unit under the provisions of the Environment Protection Act.
  • Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) was constituted in September, 1974 under the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974.Further, CPCB was entrusted with the powers and functions under the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981.

Cooperative banks come under the purview of RBI

In the wake of the recent Punjab & Maharashtra Cooperative (PMC) Bank crisis, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved amendments to the Banking Regulation Act to bring 1,540 cooperative banks under the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) regulation.

What are ‘Cooperative Banks’?

  • A Co-operative bank is a financial entity which belongs to its members, who are at the same time the owners and the customers of their bank.
  • Co-operative banks in India are registered under the States Cooperative Societies Act. The Co-operative banks are also regulated by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and governed by the – Banking Regulations Act 1949 and Banking Laws (Co-operative Societies) Act, 1955. Hence, at present, they operate under the regulatory preview of both the central bank and state cooperative societies.

What changes now?

  • Cooperative banks will be brought under the regulation of the RBI.
  • The RBI will have the power to supersede and take control of the cooperative banks if the bank’s financial health deteriorates.
  • Cooperative banks will need RBI permission to appoint a CEO.
  • Cooperative bank audits will have to be done as per RBI guidelines.

Daily MCQs

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