Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 05 JANUARY 2019
Centre tells supreme court Lokpal search panel has been constituted
- The government informed the Supreme Court on Friday that a search
committee had been constituted in September 2018 for zeroing in on eligible
candidates for the Lokpal, and it will frame its own rules of functioning.
- The Department of Personnel and Training’s notification, issued on
September 27, lists the names of the eight-member search committee, led by
former Supreme Court judge RanjanaPrakash Desai.
- On July 24 last year, the Supreme Court had said the government’s
stand on completing the appointment of Lokpal, an ombudsman to protect the
common man from corruption in public service and power centres, was “wholly
- The court had then been reacting to an affidavit filed by the
government, of which the stated aim was to specify the exact time frame by
which it would appoint the Lokpal. Instead, the government had said the
appointment was a “complicated” process.
- Though passed in 2014, the Lokpal and Lokayukta Act of 2013 was
not implemented all these years because there was no Leader of the
Opposition (LoP) in the 16th LokSabha. The 2013 statute includes the LoP as
a member of the selection committee.
- The Act intends the LoP to be the part of the selection committee
of the Prime Minister, the Chief Justice of India and the Speaker, which has
to first appoint an eminent jurist among their ranks.
Prime Minister assures zero exclusion in NRC
- The government will ensure that no Indian is left out of the
National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam, Prime Minister NarendraModi
has said on Friday.
- Addressing the Vijay SankalpSamavesh rally at Silchar in Assam,
Prime Minister said that he is aware of the difficulties faced by the
general public in the process of preparing NRC.
- Prime Minister expressed hope that the Citizenship Amendment Act
will be passed by the Parliament soon. He said that the Citizenship
Amendment Bill has been introduced after wide discussions and the government
is moving forward with it firmly.
- PM Modi said his government is working on the policy of 'Act east
and act fast in the east' for holistic development of northeast with
developing infrastructure and conserving culture simultaneously.
- He said to promote culture and values of people of Assam, union
cabinet has approved constitution of a high-level committee to implement
clause 6 of Assam accord.
- Earlier, in Manipur, Prime Minister inaugurated eight development
projects and laid the foundation stone for four development projects at
HaptaKangjeibung in Imphal. He dedicated 400 KV Double Circuit
Silchar-Imphalline to the nation.
E-com companies may seek extension for implementation of new rules
- Large e-commerce marketplaces could approach the government
seeking extension of the February 1 deadline as compliance with the recent
changes would require at least 4-5 months at operational level, according to
- A senior executive at one of the big e-commerce companies said at
least 4-5 months would be needed for players to rework the operational
aspects and that the February 1 deadline does not provide adequate time.
- The rules were announced on December 26, giving firms just a month
to execute these changes which, in many cases, would require reworking
existing partnerships and even, overhauling business models, the executive
- Another official said companies are studying the recently
announced amendments in detail and are likely to approach the government in
the coming weeks. These representatives did not wish to be identified as the
matter is sensitive.
- The government’s move to tighten norms has hit Amazon and Flipkart
the hardest as the new regulations prohibit online marketplaces with foreign
investment to sell products of companies in which they hold stake. Norms
also ban exclusive marketing arrangements.
RBI to limit customer liability in fraud PPI transactions
- The Reserve Bank of India has decided to limit the liability of
customers in case of unauthorised electronic payment transactions in Prepaid
Payment Instruments (PPIs) issued by non-banks.
- Under new norms on customer liability, the regulator said frauds
due to third-party breach where neither the customer nor the PPI issuer is
at fault, there cannot be any liability for the customer, in case the
incident in reported within three days.
- If the fraud is reported between three and seven days, customer
liability will amount to the transaction value or Rs. 10,000, whichever is
- After the customer reports the fraud, the PPI issuer has to credit
the amount involved in the unauthorised transaction to the customer’s PPI
within 10 days.
- “The burden of proving customer liability in case of unauthorised
electronic payment transactions shall lie on the PPI issuer,” RBI said.
There will be no liability to the customer if fraud is due to negligence or
deficiency of the PPI issuer, irrespective of whether or not the transaction
is reported by the customer.
- “In cases where the loss is due to negligence by a customer, such
as where he / she has shared the payment credentials, the customer will bear
the entire loss until he / she reports the unauthorised transaction to the
PPI issuer. Any loss occurring after the reporting of the unauthorised
transaction shall be borne by the PPI issuer,” the RBI said.
Democrats sweep to power in US house of Representatives
- U.S. Democrats swept back to power on Thursday in the House of
Representatives with veteran Nancy Pelosi at the helm, but they came face to
face with what may be a new divided government normal in Washington:
- After a historic opening session of the 116th Congress in which
Ms. Pelosi was elected as Speaker for the second time in her career,
lawmakers took aim at a bipartisan priority of ending an embarrassing
partial government shutdown that was stretching into its 13th day.
- The House passed two measures that would re-open government
agencies whose funding had lapsed, but provide no money for a border wall
demanded by Donald Trump. They are all but dead on arrival in the Senate,
where the Republican leadership has vowed not to bring them up for a vote.
- Democrats’ new majority in the House of Representatives marked a
dramatic power shift on Capitol Hill less than two years before Mr. Trump’s
- The first two Native American women and first two Muslim women
were also elected. “It’s a new day in America,” tweeted Ilhan Omar, a former
Somali refugee elected from Minnesota.
China tests its most powerful non-nuclear weapon
- China has tested its most powerful non-nuclear weapon, dubbed the
“Mother of All Bombs” by official media in a reference to a U.S. munition
used in Afghanistan.
- In a short video published on the website of state arms
manufacturer Norinco, the massive bomb drops on to a plain and produces a
gigantic ball of fire and black smoke.
- The bomb whose strength is only second to that of a nuclear
weapon, according to the official Xinhua agency was dropped by a Chinese
- The bomb is five to six metres long (16 to 20 feet), but weighs
less than the American version, according to military analyst Wei Dongxu,
who was quoted by the semi-official Global Times daily on Friday.
::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::
Cyclone ‘PABUK’ to hit the Andaman Islands today
- The cyclonic storm “PABUK” over the South China Sea has moved
west-northwestwards during past 24 hours.
- It lay centred over the Gulf of Thailand and adjoining Thailand,
about 990 km east-southeast of Port Blair on Friday morning.
- Meteorological office in Port Blair said, it is very likely to
move west-northwestwards and emerge into the Andaman Sea by Saturday
- It may cross the Andaman Islands around Sunday night. The storm is
likely to cause heavy to very heavy rainfall over the Andaman Islands from
tomorrow evening till Sunday.
- Squally winds with speed reaching 60 kmph are likely to commence
over the Andaman Sea and Thailand coast. Fishermen have been advised not to
venture into the sea.
National Table Tennis championship to begin in Cuttack
The 80th National Table Tennis Championship began at
Jawaharlal Nehru Indoor Stadium in Cuttack on Friday.
As many as 35 teams, including 550 players from
different parts of the country are participating in the mega championship.
Medal winners at Commonwealth Games and Asian Games
ManikaBatra, Senior players like Sharath Kamal, MadhuribaPatkar,
OlympianAnkita Das are some of the key players who will be in the limelight
during the event.
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