- National Disaster Response Force (NDRF)
- National Commission for Safai Karamcharis
- India & Denmark Joint S&T Committee meeting
National Disaster Response Force (NDRF)
Focus: GS III- Disaster management
Why in news?
The Prime Minister has greeted the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) team on their Raising Day.
Nodal: Ministry of Home Affairs
- The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) is an Indian specialized force constituted “for the purpose of special response to a threatening disaster situation or disaster” under the Disaster Management Act, 2005.
- The “Apex Body for Disaster Management” in India is the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA).
- The Chairman of the NDMA is the Prime Minister.
- The responsibility of managing disasters in India is that of the State Government.
- National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) is under the National Disaster Management Authority.
- Headquarter of NDRF located in Delhi.
- The head of the NDRF is designated as Director General.
- The Director Generals of NDRF are IPS officers on deputation from Indian police organisations.
- The NDRF is a top-heavy organisation which in addition to the Director General has several Inspector Generals (IG) and Deputy IGs, who fly flags and wear army-style badges of rank.
- National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) is a force of 12 battalions, organised on para-military lines, and manned by persons on deputation from the para-military forces of India.
- These NDRF battalions are located at twelve different locations in the country based on the vulnerability profile to cut down the response time for their deployment.
About NDRF Functions
- The aim of the National Disaster Management Authority is to build a safer and disaster resilient India by developing a holistic, proactive, multi-disaster and technology driven strategy for disaster management.
- This has to be achieved through a culture of prevention, mitigation and preparedness to generate a prompt and efficient response at the time of disasters.
- This national vision inter alia, aims at inculcating a culture of preparedness among all stakeholders.
- NDRF has proved its importance in achieving this vision by highly skilled rescue and relief operations, regular and intensive training and re-training, familiarization exercises within the area of responsibility of respective NDRF Battalions, carrying out mock drills and joint exercises with the various stakeholders.
- In addition to this, there are four battalions capable of handling as follows;-
- Nuclear and
- Chemical disasters.
National Commission for Safai Karamcharis
Focus: GS II- Governance
Why in News?
Cabinet approves extension of tenure of the National Commission for Safai Karamcharis for three years
About National Commission for Safai Karamcharis:
Nodal: Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment
- The National Commission for Safai Karamcharis is currently a non-statutory body.
- Earlier it was a statutory body which was established by ‘National Commission for Safai Karamcharis Act 1993’ on 12th August 1994.
- Originally, it was constituted for three years, i.e. from 1994 to 1997; however, it continued as a statutory body till 2004.
- The act lapsed in 2004, following which the commission is continuing as a non-statutory body.
- 5 members
Functions of National Commission for Safai Karamcharis:
- The NCSK has been giving its recommendations to the Government regarding specific programmes for welfare of Safai Karamcharis, study and evaluate the existing welfare programmes for Safai Karamcharis, investigate cases of specific grievances etc.
- Also as per the provisions of the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013, the NCSK has been assigned the work to monitor the implementation of the Act, tender advice for its effective implementation to the Centre and State Governments and enquire into complaints regarding contravention/non-implementation of the provisions of the Act.
- Under the Manual Scavengers Act 2013; it also enquires into complaints received for the contravention of any provision related to the act, and brings it to the concerned authority.
- It takes suo-moto notice of all such matters that are in relation to the non-implementation of the provisions of Manual Scavengers Act 2013.
- It studies and monitors the working conditions of the safai karamcharis employed under various employers including:
- Panchayats, etc.
- It prepares reports w.r.t the matters concerning safai karamcharis and present it to state and central governments.
India & Denmark Joint S&T Committee meeting
Focus: GS-II: International Relations (Foreign Policies and Agreements affecting India’s Interests), GS-III: Environment and Ecology (Conservation of Environment and Ecology, International Treaties and Agreements)
Why in News?
India & Denmark agreed to initiate joint research and development on green fuels including green hydrogen, during the Joint S&T Committee meeting.
Highlights of the Meeting:
- The Joint Committee discussed national strategic priorities and developments in Science, Technology, and Innovation of both countries with a special focus on green solutions of the future – strategy for investments in green research, technology, and innovation at the virtual meeting.
- The committee emphasised on development of bilateral collaboration on mission-driven research, innovation, and technology development, including climate and green transition, energy, water, waste, food, and so on as agreed by the two Prime Ministers while adopting the Green Strategic Partnership – Action Plan 2020-2025.
- They agreed to organise 3-4 webinars for partnership development and stressed on promoting call for proposals in green fuels, including green hydrogen.
- The Joint Committee also reviewed the progress of the ongoing projects of last two joint calls being implemented in the areas of energy research; water; cyber-physical systems, and bioresources & secondary agriculture.
What is green hydrogen?
- Hydrogen when produced by electrolysis using renewable energy is known as Green Hydrogen which has no carbon footprint.
- It is a clean-burning molecule, which can decarbonize a range of sectors including iron and steel, chemicals, and transportation.
- Renewable energy that cannot be stored or used by the grid can be channelled to produce hydrogen.
Significance of Green Hydrogen for India
- The use of Green Hydrogen can help in achievement of environmental targets like reduction of Carbon Footprint, Achievement of INDC targets, net-zero emissions by 2050, and limit global temperature rises to 1.5C.
- Green Hydrogen can act as an energy storage option, which would be essential to meet intermittencies (of renewable energy) in the future.
- In terms of mobility, for long distance mobilisations for either urban freight movement within cities and states or for passengers, Green Hydrogen can be used in railways, large ships, buses or trucks, etc.
- Green Hydrogen blending up to 10% may be adopted in CGD networks to gain widespread acceptance.
- Green Hydrogen could supply up to 25% of the world’s energy needs by 2050 and become a US$10 trillion addressable market by 2050.
- Production costs of Green Hydrogen have fallen by 40% since 2015 and are expected to fall by a further 40% through 2025.
- Potential demand for imported hydrogen in China, Japan, South Korea, and Singapore could reach $9.5 billion by 2030.
- There is sufficient evidence to show that with the use of Green Hydrogen Energy Security can be ensured in a sustainable manner. However, other factors from the economic/technological angle require to be worked out.
- Efficient use of green hydrogen will reduce India’s dependency on crude oil, helping stabilize the Current Account Deficit.