News (Text)


When:
October 29, 2018 @ 1:00 am
2018-10-29T01:00:00+05:30
2018-10-29T01:15:00+05:30

NEWS

29 OCTOBER 2018

Sr. No.

Topic

News

1.

GS II: SOCIAL – WOMEN & CHILDREN

Opposition seeks SC action for Shah’s remarks in Kerala

2.

GS II: BILATERAL – INDI -USA

Trump not to attend Republic Day event

3.

GS III: DISASTER MANAGEMENT

Maharashtra forms civic committees to fix black spots on roads

4.

GS III: ECONOMY – INDICATORS

A.P. ranked first, with 10.5% growth

5.

GS III: ENVIRONMENT – BIODIVERSITY

Siberian visitors freeze Assam-Meghalaya border dispute

6.

GS II: SOCIAL – WOMEN & CHILDREN

‘Extend Vishakha norms to religious institutions’

7.

GS II: BILATERAL  -INDIA-ASIA

India helped Maldives restore democracy, says Gayoom

8.

GS II: GOVERNANCE – POLICY

Using cash handouts to combat poverty

9.

GS III: ECONOMY – INDICATORS

Depreciating rupee comes as no solace to exporters

10.

GS III :ECONOMY – SECTORS

When technology bolsters identity

11.

GS III: ECONOMY – INDICATORS

Direct tax collection in India

12.

GS III: ENVIRONMENT – BIODIVERSITY

Moths are key pollinators in Himalayan ecosystem

13.

GS II: SOCIAL – WOMEN & CHILDREN

Key meet calls for greater role for women in Catholic church

GS II: SOCIAL – WOMEN & CHILDREN

Opposition seeks SC action for Shah’s remarks in Kerala

  • The Opposition parties termed BJP president Amit Shah’s comments on the Supreme Court judgment allowing entry of women to the Sabarimala shrine as unconstitutional and contempt of court and hoped that the court would take suo motu cognisance of them and initiate action.
  • Addressing a meeting in Kerala’s Kannur, Mr. Shah listed court verdicts which have not been implemented, including on ‘jallikattu’ (a traditional bull-taming sport of Tamil Nadu) and prohibiting loudspeakers in mosques, and said “impractical” directions should not be given by courts, and they should pass only orders that could be implemented.
  • The CPI(M) cited this speech to repeat its allegation that the BJP was orchestrating the violent protests that have hit Kerala following the September 28 judgment.
  • “The threat of toppling the Kerala government if it continues to uphold the judgment is another display of the anti-democratic, authoritarian attitude typical of Amit Shah,” the party said.
  • “It is the goal of the BJP to first weaken institutions and then finish them off…there is a long list, be it CBI, EC, CVC and the CIC…now the same intervention has been made without understanding of law,” Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi told a press conference.
  • BSP president Mayawati said Mr. Shah’s speech was aimed at the upcoming Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan.

GS II: BILATERAL – INDI -USA

Trump not to attend Republic Day event

  • U.S. President Donald Trump will not travel to India as the chief guest for the Republic Day parade, and the White House has conveyed its regrets to the Narendra Modi government.
  • Mr. Trump’s “crowded calendar” has being cited as the primary reason for his not accepting the invitation.
  • The sources pointed to the State of the Union address that the U.S. President must give during the Congress session around the same time in January.
  • In 2015, when U.S. President Barack Obama had come to India for the parade, he had been able to negotiate to bring forward the address to January 20, and travelled to India after it.

GS III: DISASTER MANAGEMENT

Maharashtra forms civic committees to fix black spots on roads

  • Roads within the limits of urban local bodies in Maharashtra will undergo an annual safety audit as per the standards set by the Indian Road Congress in a bid to prevent accidents, and will also be examined twice a year to ensure safety.
  • Following the directions given by the Supreme Court, a high-level committee under the chairmanship of Justice (retd.) Radhakrishnan was set up, and the panel had appointed the Delhi Integrated Multimodal Transport System (DIMTS) to suggest measures to be taken for road safety through a scientific study.
  • As the recommendations of the DIMTS were accepted by the committee, the State government has now decided toimplement them by forming a panel at the municipal corporation and municipal council levels.
  • “The committees will be tasked to recommend measures which need to be taken to fix black spots on city roads,” an official from the transport department said.
  • Black spot is a place where maximum number of accidents occur.
  • The committees will have to take a quarterly progress report of the road safety audit.
  • They will have to make suggestions and take action on securing black spots. An action-taken report needs to be submitted to the government.

GS III: ECONOMY – INDICATORS

A.P. ranked first, with 10.5% growth

  • Andhra Pradesh has achieved the number one rank in the country with an average growth of 10.5% during the last four years.
  • It has surpassed many developed States such as Maharashtra and Gujarat following a “focused approach” and setting high targets for itself.
  • According to the State Planning Department, the average growth in the country stood at 7.3% during the last four years.
  • Probably, Andhra Pradesh is the only State to clock the double-digit growth rate.
  • While Telangana has slipped to the second place, Maharashtra is ranked sixth.
  • Punjab is placed 14th and Karnataka third.
  • The growth in Andhra Pradesh was 9.2% in 2014-15, the year of bifurcation. Later, it was ranked second. In the subsequent year, it achieved a double-digit growth of 10.6% though its rank had slipped to the 4th place.
  • Since then, the State has been achieving double-digit growth rates.
  • Gujarat, which is considered the most developed State, registered a growth of 10.5% in 2014-15. But it slipped to 10.1 in 2016-17. The data pertaining to 2017-18 is not available.
  • Telangana, which registered 6.8% growth in 2014-15 could achieve 10.4% in 2017-18, officials said.

GS III: ENVIRONMENT – BIODIVERSITY

Siberian visitors freeze Assam-Meghalaya border dispute

  • Umru village on the Assam-Meghalaya border lacks a road but that doesn’t stop its famous winter visitors – a flock of Amur falcons, the world’s longest travelling raptors.
  • While Doyang Lake near Pangti village in Nagaland’s Wokha district is better known as a stopover for the Amur falcons during their annual migration from their breeding grounds in Mongolia and northern China to warmer South Africaa flock has been seen since 2010 in Umru.
  • The lack of an access road is not the only problem faced by the villagers. Umru is in Block II, one of 12 disputed areas along the Assam-Meghalaya border, since Meghalaya was carved out of Assam in 1972.
  • The 50-odd Gorkha households in the village prefer to be in Assam while the 30 Khasi tribal households want to be in Meghalaya.
  • But these disputes are forgotten when the village welcomes the falcons in mid-October, uniting to ensure a safe stay for the birds.

GS II: SOCIAL – WOMEN & CHILDREN

‘Extend Vishakha norms to religious institutions’

  • The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear a PIL petition to extend the Vishakha guidelines against sexual harassment in workplace to ashrams, madrasas and Catholic institutions.
  • The Vishakha guidelines introduced by the apex court in 1997 were evolved into a parliamentary law called theSexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act of 2013.
  • The petition filed by advocate Maneesh Pathak said religious institutions also have women employed there other than those working on a voluntary basis. 

GS II: BILATERAL  -INDIA-ASIA

India helped Maldives restore democracy, says Gayoom

  • India played a “positive” role in restoration of democracy in Maldives by “exerting pressure” on the ruling regime,and the new government in the island nation would be “sensitive” towards ‘s “concerns”, said former Maldivian President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.
  • Joint opposition leader Ibrahim Mohamed Solih came out victorious in the September 23 presidential election, handing a shock defeat to Mr. Yameen.
  • Asked whether Mr. Yameen drew his strength from strong backing by China, Mr. Gayoom hoped that Beijing would respect the will of the Maldivian people.
  • Asked about India’s role after imposition of emergency by Mr. Yameen in February 2018, Mr. Gayoom said, “India did play a positive role, and along with other international partners, did exert pressure towards restoration of democracy.”

GS II: GOVERNANCE – POLICY

Using cash handouts to combat poverty

  • U.S. charity Give Directly is testing the universal basic income theory, a cash handout scheme.
  • The study is the biggest in the world and will involve a total of 20,000 people in western Kenya.
  • Residents of 40 villages will receive $22 a month for 12 years, a further 80 villages will receive the same amount for just two years, while another 76 villages will receive two lump sum payments of $507 spaced two months apart.
  • Kenya’s Siaya County, is one of the villages selected.
  • It’s part of a large, intensive, multi-year study aimed at discovering a new way to end poverty in Afric
  • According to the World Bank, over a third of Kenya’s nearly 50 million citizens live below the international poverty line of $1.90 a day.
  • The region was selected because of its poverty, but also its stability and, crucially, the effectiveness of Kenya’s mobile money transfer system, M-Pesa.
  • “When you give people money monthly, will they stop working? Will they take risks in the way they invest knowing they will have an income whatever happens? How does that affect their aspirations?” these are some of the questions the programme is testing.

GS III: ECONOMY – INDICATORS

Depreciating rupee comes as no solace to exporters

  • Exporters in India are not happy with the current policy and exchange rate situation even though they should be cheering the depreciating rupee.
  • A combination of higher input costs, uncertainty over tariffs, and the fact that the government has said it would not be refunding them the Integrated Goods and Services Tax (IGST) they have paid, has meant that exports contracted in September for the first time in six months.
  • Exports contracted by 2.34% in September, albeit on a high base, despite the rupee averaging more than 72 a dollar during that month.
  • A depreciating rupee should ideally be good for exporters, since it means that India’s exports are relatively cheaper than they were before. However, export bodies such as the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) have said that this benefit is not passing through to exporters.
  • Costlier capital goods
  • According to FIEO, the depreciation has resulted in an increase in the cost of imported capital goods, inputs and various services used by exporters paid in foreign currency.
  • Apart from this, the exporters say that depreciating currencies in some of their biggest export destinations such as West Asia, Africa, and certain parts of Asia, has meant that buyers in these areas have also begun asking for discounts.
  • Several exporters have complained that the confusion surrounding India’s eligibility for the U.S. Generalised System of Preferences has meant that many advance orders, which ordinarily would have gone to Indian companies, are now being diverted to exporters in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Vietnam.
  • The GSP is a system where the U.S. allows certain eligible countries to export about 3,500 commodities to the U.S. on a duty-free basis.
  • Earlier this year, the U.S. said it would be reviewing India’s eligibility for this benefit. In the meantime, while the Indian government has maintained that India’s exporters are still eligible for the GSP benefits until the review is completed, major export bodies have said their exporters have not received these benefits since December 2017.
  • The government has also maintained a stubborn stance on IGST refunds., say exporters. The Centre argues that since the exporters have been receiving duty drawback on input taxes paid, they are not eligible for IGST refunds. Exporters say this view lack skews the playing field in favour of exporters operating in a single State. An exporter with operations in one State is eligible for Central GST and State GST refunds, but an exporter with operations across States gets no IGST refund.
  • Many of them say the bulk of their working capital – in many cases more than 50% – is tied up in IGST refunds.

GS III :ECONOMY – SECTORS

When technology bolsters identity

  • India seems to be slowly catching on to a global trend that began in 2017, when the acquisition of technology firms by non-digital companies crossed 51% of total deals in the U.S., according to research firm CB Insights.
  • Mahindra Logistics picked up stake in ShipX, a provider of transport management solutions in 2018.
  • Retail chains facing an e-commerce threat, or logistics firms facing stiff competition due to opportunities offered by online purchase trends, are investing in or acquiring technology firms.
  • Financial services is another area that has seen disruption. Bajaj Finance investing in e-wallet firm Mobikwik is an example.

GS III: ECONOMY – INDICATORS

Direct tax collection in India

GS III: ENVIRONMENT – BIODIVERSITY

Moths are key pollinators in Himalayan ecosystem

  • Moths are widely considered as pests, but a recent study by scientists of Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) has revealed that these group of insects are pollinators to a number of flowering plants in the Himalayan ecosystem.
  • The analysis of proboscis, a long and thread-like organ used to suck flower sap, of a dozen moth species’ revealed the presence of pollen grains.
  • Researchers have pointed out that almost two-thirds of common large moth species have declined over a period of 40 years in many parts of the world.
  • One of the main reasons for the decline is the increase in ecological light pollution, especially in areas inhabited by moths.

GS II: SOCIAL – WOMEN & CHILDREN

Key meet calls for greater role for women in Catholic church

  • A major meeting of Catholic bishops ended with a call for women to play a greater role in Church decision making as a “duty of justice“, but appeared to water down language that would have been more welcoming to gays.
  • Pope Francis, ending a month-long meeting on the theme of Catholic youth, told young people that in order to be good members of the Church they should not be obsessed with “doctrinal formulae” but blend its rules with social activism to help those in need.
  • The role of women took centre stage at the synod, which was focused on reaching out to young people, but has been overshadowed by the scandal over sex abuse in the Church and acrimony between social conservatives and reformers.
  • However, none of the Vatican’s 60 departments is headed by a women and only six women hold decision making roles in the Vatican bureaucracy.
  • In a sign of the divisions, the synod used what appeared to be compromise language on the topic of homosexuality, saying people could not be identified solely by sexual orientation.
  • The document also called for stricter measures to combat sexual abuse, including more transparency in Church structures, and denounced a culture of elitism among some Church leaders which it said can facilitate cover-up and corruption.

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