29th January 2021

HC vacancies: SC questions govt over delay in action on Collegium recommendations

  • The Supreme Court expressed its concerns over the government delaying action on the recommendations of the Collegium to fill up vacancies in the High Courts

Collegium System

  • System of appointment and transfer of judges that has evolved through judgments of the SC, and not by an Act of Parliament or by a provision of the Constitution
  • The SC collegium Composition: Head- CJI and other four senior most judges of the court.
  • HC collegium Composition: Head- Chief Justice and four other senior most judges of that court.
  • Names recommended for appointment by a HC collegium reaches the government only after approval by the CJI and the SC collegium.


India inks MoU with International Energy Agency for global energy security, sustainability

  • India has signed a Strategic Partnership Agreement with the International Energy Agency (IEA) to strengthen cooperation in global energy security, stability and sustainability. This agreement aims to promote and encourage strategic and technical cooperation in the energy sector.


  • Established in 1974 as per framework of the OECD, IEA is an autonomous intergovernmental organisation.


  • To ensure reliable, affordable and clean energy for its  member countries and beyond.
  • Its mission is guided by four main areas of focus: energy security, economic development, environmental awareness and engagement worldwide 

Headquarters (Secretariat)

  • Paris, France.

Roles and functions:

  • Established in the wake of the 1973-1974 oil crisis, to help its members respond to major oil supply disruptions, a role it continues to fulfil today.
  • IEA’s mandate has expanded over time to include tracking and analyzing global key energy trends, promoting sound energy policy, and fostering multinational energy technology cooperation.

Composition and eligibility:

  • It has 30 members at present. IEA family also includes eight association countries. 
  • A candidate country must be a member country of the OECD. But all OECD members are not IEA members. 


Russia gives nod to extend START treaty

  • Russia approved the extension of the New START treaty for five years. 
  • Treaty between the United States of America and the Russian Federation
  • Last remaining nuclear Russia-USA arms control treaty which is about to expire in February 2021.
  • AIM: Further reduction and limitation of strategic offensive arms (nuclear warheads deployed by Strategic Nuclear Delivery Vehicles (‘SNDVs’)).
  • Enforcement: 5th February, 2011

PM chairs PRAGATI meeting

  • Recently, the Indian Prime Minister chaired the 35th edition of Pro-Active Governance And Timely Implementation (PRAGATI).
  • Ten projects including Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Pariyojana were taken for review involving a total investment of Rs. 54,675 crore.
  • PRAGATI is the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) based multimodal platform, involving Central and State governments.
  • Launched in 2015
  •  Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) team designed with the help of the National Informatics Center (NIC)
  • It is a three-tier system (PMO, Union Government Secretaries, and Chief Secretaries of the States).
  • It enables the PM to discuss the issues with the concerned central and state officials with full information and latest visuals of the ground-level situation.



Promotes cooperative federalism Concentration of power in the extra-constitutional office of PMO.
Innovative project in e-governance and good governance The direct interaction of the PM with the state secretaries without involving the political executives of the states is undermining the state political executive.
Robust system for bringing e-transparency and e-accountability with real-time presence and exchange among the key stakeholders


Madhya Pradesh: Tigress dies after getting trapped in snare

  • In the buffer zone of Kanha tiger reserve in Madhya Pradesh, a tigress was found dead.

Kanha National Park

  • Kanha National Park is nestled in the Maikal range of Satpuras in Madhya Pradesh, the heart of India that forms the central Indian highlands.
  • Kanha National Park was declared a reserve forest in 1879 and revalued as a wildlife sanctuary in 1933. Its position was further upgraded to a national park in 1955.
  • The Kanha National Park is spread across the area of 940 sq km in the Maikal chain of hills. By bringing up the buffer and core zone all together, the Kanha Tiger Reserve has the total area of 1945 sq km.
  • This vivacious land has been the source of inspiration for Rudyard Kipling, a famous writer for his outstanding creation- “The Jungle Book”.
  • WILDLIFE: A location which is filled with large varieties of fauna out of which the jungle is best known for Barasingha, the swamp deer and is famously called ‘the jewel of Kanha’. The tiger tour is perfectly a great option for the nature lovers in Kanha.
  • TRIBES: The Kanha National Park was originally a part of the Gondwanas or the “land of the Gonds”. The forest of the Kanha Tiger Reserve was inhibited by two indigenous tribes of Central India, the Gonds and the Baigas. The vicinity of the reserve is still occupied with the villagers of these tribes.


  • Traditionally known as Dolhorina which is similar to the English name (Swamp Deer), Barasingha is the most abundant species found in Kanha Reserve.
  • This species is being recognized as the sub- Himalayan terai of North India, the hard ground Barasingha is an exclusive graminivorous deer species that totally depends on grasses and grasslands and shows a preference for aquatic plants. It is the most peaceful species in Kanha that easily interacts with Chital.
  • They are often found to wade into water, frequently dipping its stifle to feed on water plants.
  • THREATS: Hunting, poaching and diversion of the long grassland to agriculture in Central India has been the main causes of their depletion in counts and thus the reserve officials have taken some necessary steps so as to conserve their population.


Garlanding Ceremony of Statue of Bharat Ratna Pandit Govind Ballabh Pant

  • Statue of BHARAT RATNA PANDIT GOVIND BALLABH PANT at Pandit Pant Marg, New Delhi was unveiled.
  • Born on 10 September 1887 at Almora in Uttarakhand
  • He established an organisation called Prem Sabha in Kashipur that started working towards several reforms.
  • He also saved a school from shutting down due to non-payment of taxes to the British government.

Before independence

After independence

  1. In December 1921, he was elected to the Legislative Assembly of the United Provinces of Agra and Oudh, which he later renamed Uttar Pradesh.
  2. He was elected as a candidate of the Swaraj Party from Nainital.
  3. In the 1937 provincial elections held under the Government of India Act, 1935, he was appointed premier. He served the post till 1939, when all Congress ministers resigned after the British committed India to the Second World War of its own accord.
  4. In the United Provinces election held in 1946, he was once again appointed the premier.
  1. First Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh.
  2. He served as India’s home minister from 1955 to 1961. It was during his tenure that states were reorganised on linguistic lines.
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