News: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar will lead a delegation of multiparty leaders from the State to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 23 to press for a caste-based census in the country. With the Uttar Pradesh Assembly election just a few months away, the BJP has maintained an uneasy silence on the issue.
About the Caste Census:
Every Census in independent India from 1951 to 2011 has published data on Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, but not on other castes. Before that, every Census until 1931 had data on caste.
However, in 1941, caste-based data was collected but not published.
In the absence of such a census, there is no proper estimate for the population of OBCs, various groups within the OBCs, and others. The Mandal Commission estimated the OBC population at 52%, some other estimates have been based on National Sample Survey data, and political parties make their own estimates in states and Lok Sabha and Assembly seats during elections.
The demand usually come from among those belonging to Other Backward Classes (OBC) and other deprived sections, while sections from the upper castes oppose the idea.
On April 1, the constitutional body National Commission for Backward Classes urged the government to collect data on the population of OBCs “as part of Census of India 2021 exercise.”
There is a Central list of OBCs and State-specific list of OBCs. Some States do not have a list of OBCs; some States have a list of OBCs and a sub-set called Most Backward Classes. The Registrar General has also pointed out that there are certain open-ended categories in the lists such as orphans and destitute children. Names of some castes are found in both the list of Scheduled Castes and list of OBCs.
Scheduled Castes converted to Christianity or Islam are also treated differently in different States. The status of a migrant from one State to another and the status of children of inter-caste marriage, in terms of caste classification, are also vexed questions.
About Socio – Economic Caste Census:
The Socio Economic and Caste Census 2011 (SECC) was conducted for the 2011 Census of India.
The Manmohan Singh government approved the Socio Economic and Caste Census 2011 to be carried out after discussion in both houses of Parliament in 2010.
The SECC 2011 was conducted in all states and union territories of India and the first findings were revealed on 3 July 2015 by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
SECC 2011 is also the first paperless census in India conducted on hand-held electronic devices by the government in 640 districts.
The rural development ministry has taken a decision to use the SECC data in all its programmes such as MGNREGA, National Food Security Act, and the Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Grameen Kaushalya Yojana.
SECC 2011 was the first caste-based census since 1931 Census of India, and it was launched on 29 June 2011 from the Sankhola village of Hazemara block in West Tripura district.
2. POTALA PALACE
News: A top Chinese official said on Thursday that “all-round efforts” are needed to ensure Tibetans speak standard spoken and written Chinese and share the “cultural symbols and images of the Chinese nation.”
About Potala Palace:
The Potala Palace is a dzong fortress in the city of Lhasa, Tibet Autonomous Region, China.
It was the winter palace of the Dalai Lamas from 1649 to 1959, has been a museum since then, and has been a World Heritage Site since 1994.
The palace is named after Mount Potalaka, the mythical abode of the bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara.
The 5th Dalai Lama started its construction in 1645 after one of his spiritual advisers, Konchog Chophel (died 1646), pointed out that the site was ideal as a seat of government, situated as it is between Drepung and Sera monasteries and the old city of Lhasa.
It may overlay the remains of an earlier fortress called the White or Red Palace on the site, built by Songtsen Gampo in 637.
3. ACCESS NETWORK PROVIDER
News: TRAI on Thursday suggested that a separate authorisation be created for access network provider, to offer network services on a wholesale basis, as the sector regulator spelt out its views on unbundling of various layers through differential licensing.
The recommendations by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) aim to create a separate licence authorisation for access network provider and moot a broad framework for virtual network operators (VNOs) seeking and entering into pacts with the network providers.
The implementation of these recommendations is expected to result in increased sharing of network resources and could also prove to be catalyst in proliferation of 5G services.
Under the new authorisation, the access network provider would not be permitted to directly provide services to the end customer.
About Access Network:
An access network is a type of telecommunications network which connects subscribers to their immediate service provider.
It is contrasted with the core network, which connects local providers to one another.
The access network may be further divided between feeder plant or distribution network, and drop plant or edge network.
An access network, also referred to as an outside plant, refers to the series of wires, cables and equipment lying between a consumer/business telephone termination point (the point at which a telephone connection reaches the customer) and the local telephone exchange.
The local exchange contains banks of automated switching equipment which direct a call or connection to the consumer.
The access network is perhaps one of the oldest assets a telecoms operator would own.
The process of communicating with a network begins with an access attempt, in which one or more users interact with a communications system to enable initiation of user information transfer. An access attempt itself begins with issuance of an access request by an access originator.
An access attempt ends either in successful access or in access failure – an unsuccessful access that results in termination of the attempt in any manner other than initiation of user information transfer between the intended source and destination (sink) within the specified maximum access time.
Access time is the time delay or latency between a requested access attempt and successful access being completed. In a telecommunications system, access time values are measured only on access attempts that result in successful access.
Access failure can be the result of access outage, user blocking, incorrect access, or access denial. Access denial (system blocking) can include:
Access failure caused by the issuing of a system blocking signal by a communications system that does not have a camp-on busy signal feature.
Access failure caused by exceeding the maximum access time and nominal system access time fraction during an access attempt.