Withholding of Presidential Assent of State Bills


  • Kerala challenging President’s withholding assent to Kerala University Bills.

Governor’s Power

  • Article 200: Four options for Governor upon receiving a Bill.
    • Grant assent.
    • Withhold assent (Bill fails).
    • Return Bill for reconsideration (if not a Money Bill).
    • Reserve Bill for President’s consideration.

Reservation for President

  • Mandatory reservation: Bill endangering state high court’s position.
  • Discretionary reservation:
    • Ultra-vires the Constitution.
    • Opposed to Directive Principles.
    • Against national interest.
    • Grave national importance.
    • Compulsory property acquisition.

Sarkaria Commission Recommendations

  • Reservation of Bills a discretionary power, used rarely for unconstitutionality.
  • Governor to act on ministerial advice (except reservation).
  • President to dispose of Bills within six months.
  • Reasons for withholding assent to be communicated to state government.

Way Forward

  • Governor’s power to reserve Bills is crucial for constitutional compliance.
  • Misuse of gubernatorial discretion needs to be checked.
  • Amend Constitution or seek Supreme Court verdict.


Elections in India

About Elections in India

  • Universal adult franchise: Every Indian of 18 years and above can vote.
  • Frequent elections: Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, State Assemblies, Vidhan Parishad, President, Vice-President, local bodies.
  • Election Commission of India (ECI): Three-member autonomous body responsible for conducting elections.

Election Procedure

  1. Notification:Election Commission recommends, President/Governor issues notification.
  2. Nomination:Filing nomination papers, security deposit.
  3. Scrutiny and Withdrawal:Scrutiny by Returning Officer, candidates can withdraw.
  4. Campaigning:Period for candidates to persuade voters.
  5. Model Code of Conduct:Guidelines for fair campaigning by ECI.
  6. Polling and Counting:Polling booths, counting of votes, declaration of results.

Electoral Reforms

  • Voting age lowered from 21 to 18 years.
  • Increased security deposit.
  • Photo identity cards.
  • Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs).

Challenges and Way Forward

  • Stricter control over money in elections.
  • Barring candidates with criminal cases.
  • Complete ban on caste/religious appeals.
  • Increased voter vigilance and participation.



National Action Plan for Prevention and Control of Snakebite Envenoming (NAP-SE)

Snakebite Envenoming

  • Classified by WHO as a high-priority neglected tropical disease.
  • 8-2.7 million envenomings worldwide annually.

Snakebites in India

  • “Big four” cause 90% of bites: common krait, cobra, Russell’s viper, saw-scaled viper.
  • 3-4 million snakebites annually, 50,000 deaths (half of global deaths).


  • Vision: Halve deaths and disabilities from snakebites by 2030.
  • Aims: Reduce envenoming risk, ensure anti-venom availability, build capacity, improve referral mechanisms, and educate the public.
  • “One Health” approach: Collaboration between sectors for solutions.

Anti-Venom Strategy

  • Antivenoms are WHO Essential Medicines.
  • Made from antibodies produced by horses injected with small venom doses.
  • Antibodies collected and used to treat snakebite victims.


 Gender Inequality Index 2022

About the Index

  • Gender Inequality Index (GII) by UNDP measures gender inequality across three dimensions:
    • Reproductive health
    • Empowerment
    • Labor market


  • Denmark ranked first, followed by Norway, Switzerland, and Sweden.
  • India improved 14 ranks to 108th with a score of 0.437.
    • Improvements in life expectancy, education, and GNI per capita.
    • Adolescent birth rate decreased.
  • Largest gender gap remains in labor force participation (47.8% difference).

India’s Initiatives

  • Code on Social Security, 2020: Social security provisions for women.
  • Mission Shakti: Empowers women through self-help groups.
  • Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (BBBP), Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana, Ujjwala Yojana, etc.




News in Short


  • Joint Military Exercise between Indian Army and Seychelles Defence Forces (SDF).
  • Biennial training event conducted in Seychelles since 2001.
  • Focuses on interoperability in Sub-conventional Operations.



  • New automotive fuel launched by Ministry of Petroleum.
  • 92-94% ethanol, 4-5% motor spirit, and 1.5% Co-solvent.
  • Reduces greenhouse gas emissions and improves engine performance.
  • India targets 20% ethanol blending by 2025-26.


India’s First Integrated Oil Palm Processing Unit 

  • Located in Arunachal Pradesh, aligns with Mission Palm Oil.
  • Aims to increase domestic production of edible oils and reduce dependence on imports.
  • National Mission on Edible Oils – Oil Palm (NMEO-OP) provides financial subsidies to farmers.
  • Targets to increase area under oil palm cultivation from 3.5 lakh ha to 10 lakh ha by 2025-26.


 Cinematograph (Certification) Rules, 2024 

  • Aims to streamline film certification process for the digital age.
  • Introduces age-based indicators within the ‘UA’ category (UA 7+, 13+, 16+).
  • Requires at least one-third women representation in the Certification Board.
  • Eliminates role of third parties in the certification process.
  • Applications can only be submitted online.
  • Certificates granted by CBFC will have perpetual validity.
  • Guidelines for accessibility features for hearing and visually impaired introduced.



IceCube: Neutrino Detector 

  • Located at the South Pole, detects subatomic particles called neutrinos.
  • Neutrinos come in different types: electron, muon, and tau.
  • IceCube is the world’s biggest ‘neutrino telescope’ with sensors buried deep in ice.
  • Detects neutrinos by observing the radiation produced when they interact with ice.


Scalable Instructable Multiworld Agent (SIMA) 

  • Developed by Google DeepMind, it’s an AI Agent, not an AI model.
  • Learns and adapts through interactions with the user.
  • Follows natural language instructions to perform tasks across video game environments.


 HbA1C Test 

  • Used to diagnose pre-diabetes and diabetes (both type 1 and type 2).
  • Measures the percentage of red blood cells with sugar-coated hemoglobin.
  • HbA1C below 5.7% is considered normal, 5.7-6.4% indicates pre-diabetes, and 6.5% or higher indicates diabetes.


Lisus and Singphos Communities 

  • Lisu community: Tibeto-Burman family inhabiting Arunachal Pradesh, China, Myanmar, and Thailand.
  • Children named based on birth order with numbers incorporated (e.g., Ana for eldest daughter).
  • Singpho community: Ethnic group inhabiting 27 countries, including India’s Arunachal Pradesh and Assam.


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