Recently, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) floated a consultation paper seeking comments about the potential introduction of a Calling Name Presentation (CNAP) feature.
GS II: Government Policies and Interventions
Dimensions of the Article:
- What is its purpose?
- About Telecom Regulatory Authority of India
- The feature would provide an individual with information about the calling party (similar to ‘Truecaller’ and ‘Bharat Caller ID & Anti-Spam’).
- The idea is to ensure that telephone subscribers are able to make an informed choice about incoming calls and curb harassment by unknown or spam callers.
What is its purpose?
- Existing technologies present the number of the calling entity on the potential receiver’s handset.
- Since subscribers are not given the name and identity of the caller, they sometimes choose not to answer them believing it could be unsolicited commercial communication from unregistered telemarketers.
- This could lead to even genuine calls being unanswered.
- Additionally, there have been rising concerns about robocalls (calls made automatically using IT-enabled systems with a pre-recorded voice), spam calls and fraudulent calls.
- Truecaller’s ‘2021 Global Spam and Scam Report’ revealed that the average number of spam calls per user each month in India, stood at 16.8 while total spam volumes received by its users were in excess of 3.8 billion calls in October alone.
- Smartphone users, at present, rely on in-built features or third-party apps to mark and tackle spam calls. However, as per the regulator, their reliance on crowd-sourced data may not be reliable.
- In 1997, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Act, 1997, created the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).
- The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has its headquarters in New Delhi.
- Two full-time members, two part-time members, and the chairperson of the TRAI are all chosen by the Indian government.
Functions of TRAI:
- The function of the TRAI is to make recommendations to the central government on matters related to service providers, Revocation of license for non-compliance , Measures to facilitate competition and promote efficiency in the operation of telecommunication services to facilitate their growth etc.
- Laying down the standards of quality of service to be provided by the service providers.
- Timely and officially notifying the rates at which the telecommunication services within India and outside India shall be provided under the TRAI Act, 1997.
- The recommendations of the TRAI are not binding upon the Central Government.
Powers of TRAI:
- It can call upon any service provider to furnish in writing the information or explanation relating to its affairs as the Authority may require.
- The Authority may appoint one or more persons to make an inquiry in relation to the affairs of any service provider.
- It is empowered to direct any of its officers or employees to inspect the books of accounts or other documents of any service provider.
- The Authority shall have the power to issue such directions to service providers as it may consider necessary for proper functioning by service providers.
-Source: The Hindu
According to the Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM), fire count from Stubble Burning in Delhi and the NCR (National Capital Region) has reduced by 31.5% in 2022 as compared to 2021.
GS III: Environment and Ecology
Dimensions of the Article:
- What is stubble burning?
- Effects of Stubble Burning
- About Pusa Bio-Decomposer
What is stubble burning?
- Stubble burning is intentionally setting fire to the straw stubble that remains after grains, like paddy, wheat, etc., have been harvested. The practice was widespread until the 1990s, when governments increasingly restricted its use.
- The burning of stubble, contrasted with alternatives such as ploughing the stubble back into the ground or collecting it for industrial uses, has a number of consequences and effects on the environment.
Effects of Stubble Burning:
- Kills slugs and other pests
- Can reduce nitrogen tie-up
- Loss of nutrients
- Pollution from smoke
- Damage to electrical and electronic equipment from floating threads of conducting waste
- Risk of fires spreading out of control
- The main adverse effects of crop residue burning include the emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs) that contributes to the global warming, increased levels of particulate matter (PM) and smog that cause health hazards, loss of biodiversity of agricultural lands, and the deterioration of soil fertility
Alternatives to Stubble Burning:
- In-Situ Treatment of Stubble: For example, crop residue management by zero-tiller machine and Use of bio-decomposers.
- Ex-Situ (off-site) Treatment: For example, Use of rice straw as cattle fodder.
- Use of Technology– For example Turbo Happy Seeder (THS) machine, which can uproot the stubble and also sow seeds in the area cleared. The stubble can then be used as mulch for the field.
About Pusa Bio-Decomposer
- It is essentially a fungi-based liquid solution that can soften hard stubble to the extent that it can be easily mixed with soil in the field to act as compost.
- The fungi thrive at 30-32 degree Celsius, which is the temperature prevailing when paddy is harvested and wheat is sown.
- It produce enzymes to digest cellulose, lignin and pectin in paddy straw.
- It is developed by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and named after ICAR’s campus at Pusa in Delhi,
- It rapidly converts crop residues, animal waste, dung and other waste into organic manure.
- It is an inexpensive and effective technology for agricultural waste and crop residue management.
- The decomposer improves the fertility and productivity of the soil as the stubble works as manure and compost for the crops and lesser fertiliser consumption is required in the future.
- The soil loses its richness due to stubble burning and it also destroys the useful bacteria and fungi in the soil, apart from causing harm to the environment.
- It is an efficient and effective, cheaper, doable and practical technique to stop stubble burning.
- It is an eco-friendly and environmentally useful technology and will contribute to achieve Swachh Bharat Mission.
-Source: The Hindu
The Bombay High Court (HC) seeks the Dharavi redevelopment project authority’s reply to Public Interest Litigation (PIL) for removal of Mahim Nature Park from the Dharavi Redevelopment Project.
GS II: Polity and Governance
Dimensions of the Article:
- About Dharavi
- Economic significance of Dharavi
- What is the Dharavi Redevelopment Project all about?
- Dharavi, infamous as one of the world’s largest slums, is located in the heart of India’s financial capital – Mumbai.
- A city within a city, it is one unending stretch of narrow dirty lanes, open sewers and cramped huts.
- While the land (area of 535 acres) is owned by the government, the houses are maintained by individuals.
- The Dharavi slum came into being in 1884. It was originally inhibited by fisherfolk when the area was still creeks, swamps.
- It became attractive to migrant workers from South Mumbai and others when the swamp began to fill in due to natural and artificial causes.
- The area grew as poor rural Indians migrated to urban Mumbai.
- Today, an estimated 600,000 to 1 million people live crammed in Dharavi.
Economic significance of Dharavi
- Dharavi stands near to India’s richest business district, the Bandra-Kurla Complex, where commercial office premiums are among the highest in the country.
- The slum sprawl, spread over 2.8 sq.km. is home to an informal leather and pottery industry which employs over a lakh people.
What is the Dharavi Redevelopment Project all about?
- The state had envisaged this sprawl be transformed into a cluster of high-rises with improved urban infrastructure.
- It entailed resettling 68,000 people, including slum dwellers and those with commercial establishments.
- The state was to provide 300-sqft houses for free to residents with proof that their slum structure was in existence before January 1, 2000.
- The project was initially mooted in 2004, but never got off the ground due to various reasons.
When redevelopment was first proposed?
- In 1999, the government first proposed to redevelop Dharavi.
- Thereafter, the government of Maharashtra in the year 2003-04 decided to redevelop Dharavi as an integrated planned township.
- An action plan for redevelopment was approved by issuing a government resolution.
- It was decided to develop Dharavi by using land as a resource to cross-subsidie the cost of development through a sale component on the basis of the Slum Rehabilitation Scheme.
- The government also decided to notify the whole of Dharavi as an undeveloped area and to appoint a Special Planning Authority for its development.
- In 2011, the government cancelled all tenders and drew up a master plan.
-Source: Indian Express
Recently, OpenAI, the company best known for Dall-E — the AI-based text-to-image generator — introduced a new chatbot called ChatGPT.
GS III: Science and Technology
Dimensions of the Article:
- About ChatGPT
- Why has ChatGPT generated so much buzz?
- Is ChatGPT capable of writing fiction?
- OpenAI has created ChatGPT, a start-up focused on artificial intelligence and its potential use cases.
- ChatGPT is a ‘conversational’ AI and will answer queries just like a human would.
- According to OpenAI’s description, ChatGPT can answer “follow-up questions”, and can also “admit its mistakes, challenge incorrect premises, and reject inappropriate requests.”
- It is based on the company’s GPT 3.5 series of language learning models (LLM).
- GPT stands for Generative Pre-trained Transformer 3 and this is a kind of computer language model that relies on deep learning techniques to produce human-like text based on inputs.
- The model is trained to predict what will come next, and that’s why one can technically have a ‘conversation’ with ChatGPT.
- According to OpenAI’s blog post about ChatGPT, the chatbot was also trained using “Reinforcement Learning from Human Feedback (RLHF).”
- Interestingly, ChatGPT has been trained to decline ‘inappropriate’ requests, presumably those which are ‘illegal’ in nature.
- However, it should be noted that ChatGPT has limitations, as it may generate incorrect information, and create “biased content.”
- More importantly, the chatbot’s knowledge of the world and events after 2021 is limited.
- The chatbot gives answers which are grammatically correct and read well– though some have pointed out that these lack context and substance, which is largely true.
Why has ChatGPT generated so much buzz?
- The reason ChatGPT has generated so much discussion is because of the kind of answers it gives.
- It is being seen as a replacement for the basic emails, party planning lists, CVs, and even college essays and homework.
- It can also be used to write code.
- However, the AI’s responses are not without flaws, something even OpenAi admits.
- It notes that the chatbot sometimes could give “plausible-sounding but incorrect or nonsensical answers.” Users have the option of downvoting or upvoting a response.
- OpenAI also notes that the chatbot can sometimes overuse certain phrases due to “biases in the training data”
Is ChatGPT capable of writing fiction?
- Yes, but not at the level of a humans, at least not for now.
- Nor is OpenAI the only company trying to get AI to take over writing.
- Google had recently showcased how its LaMDA chatbot is being used to help with fiction writing, but it too admitted that this was only a helper right now and cannot take over the entire task.
- Still, ChatGPT showcases an interesting and exciting use case for AI, where humans can have a ‘real’ conversation with a chatbot.