Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 07 MAY 2019
SC in house committee gives clean chit to CJI
- The Justice S.A. Bobde in-house committee has found “no substance” in
the sexual harassment allegations levelled by a former Supreme Court staff
member against Chief Justice of India RanjanGogoi.
- A statement issued by the Supreme Court on Monday evening said the
committee’s report would be kept confidential. As part of the in-house
procedure, the report would not be placed in the public domain, it added.
- It said copies of the report were given to Chief Justice Gogoi and the
“next senior judge competent to receive the report”, that is Justice Arun
Mishra who is the fourth senior most judge.
- Official sources in the Supreme Court said the report would go no
further than Justice Mishra and Chief Justice Gogoi. There would be no Full
Court meeting on the “informal” proceedings.
- The Supreme Court on Monday quoted its reported decision of 2003 in
Indira Jaising versus Supreme Court of India , which had held that an
in-house inquiry report was “discreet” and “not for the purpose of
disclosure to any other person”.
- The complainant said she had no information about others whom the
committee examined as witnesses or whether the call records of the CJI or
the Supreme Court Secretary General was even called for.
PM to provide 1000cr as assistance to cyclone hit Odisha
- Prime Minister ShriNarendraModi has said that Central Govt will provide
manpower, machine, material and money for restoration work in cyclone FANI
affected areas in Odisha.
- Visiting the cyclone-affected areas today in Odisha, Prime Minister said
that 1000 crore rupees financial assistance will be given to Odisha. Before
the cyclone, 381 crore rupees assistance in advance was declared by the
- After an areal survey of the cyclone-affected areas today Prime Minister
said that whatever will be required for restoration and rehabilitation work,
Center will not hesitate to provide it as assistance.
- He also said that a team of officials of Prime Minister's Office will
camp in Bhubaneswar for the supervision of the reconstruction work. Prime
Minister praised the fishermen of the community of Odisha for their high
level of awareness about cyclone so that the casualty was minimised.
- Eastern Command of Indian Navy is now providing relief materials at
cyclone-affected areas of Puri and Khurda districts. Three helicopters and
three vessels are deployed for relief work. The doctors of Navy are
providing medical assistance to the injured in camp hospitals.
CRISIL claims external debt of DISCOMS to be worrying at the end of fiscal
- Aggregate external debt of State-owned electricity distribution
companies (discoms) is set to increase to pre-UjwalDiscom Assurance Yojana (UDAY)
levels of Rs. 2.6 lakh crore by the end of this fiscal, according to
Crisil’s analysis of discoms in 15 States, which account for 85% of the
- With most States having limited fiscal headroom, continuous financial
support to their discoms may be difficult. So discoms have to become
commercially viable through prudent tariff hikes and a material reduction in
aggregate technical and commercial (AT&C) losses, said the Crisil statement.
- As per the MoUs States had signed under UDAY in fiscal 2016, their
discoms were to initiate structural reforms by reducing AT&C losses by 900
basis points (bps) to about 15% in fiscal 2019, and also implement regular
tariff hikes of 5-6% per annum.
- In lieu, State governments took over three-fourths of discom debt, thus
reducing the interest cost burden. While discoms enjoyed the benefit of debt
reduction, structural reforms have been slow to come by.
- “Further improvement in operations may face challenges because the focus
on new rural connections without adequate tariff hikes can increase losses,”
said SubodhRai, senior director, Crisil Ratings.
Mastercard plans huge investment in India in future
- Mastercard on Monday announced a $1 billion investment in India over the
next five years aimed at converting India into a vital node in the company’s
infrastructure, and also to continue business expansion.
- “There is a very large presence that Mastercard has built, and now,
after having seen the last five years, we are very bullish on the overall
Indian economy and what the future looks like, and clearly very excited
about the digital payments ecosystem and payments ecosystem in general,” Ari
Sarker, co-president, Asia Pacific at Mastercard told.
- Mastercard has previously invested $1 billion in India over the last
five years, Mr.Sarker explained, which have resulted in several
acquisitions, increased employment in the India offices, and improvements in
technology development capabilities.
- “If you look at 2014, our presence in India was only 30-odd people,
which was largely focussed on banks in India for our sales and distribution
effort,” Mr.Sarker said.
- The about $300 million portion of the investment will make India a node
for the delivery of payment processing capabilities. “In essence, all of our
processing capabilities [such as] authorisation, clearing, settlement,
tokenisation, fraud and safety services, all of that will be locally
delivered,” he said. “It will take us two years to build up.”
India Pakistan to attend SCO council meeting in September
- External Affairs Minister SushmaSwaraj and Pakistan’s Foreign Minister
Shah MehmoodQureshi will attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation
Council of Foreign Ministers in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, later this month, for
the first time since a proposed meeting between them in New York last
September was cancelled.
- Officials in New Delhi and Islamabad confirmed that both Foreign
Ministers were “scheduled to attend”, but said there was no proposal for
them to meet separately. The SCO summit meet in June will also come just
ahead of a plenary session of the Financial Action Task Force in Orlando,
U.S., from June 16 to 21, which will deliberate on Pakistan’s grey-listing
status on terror financing.
- Fuelling speculation, a Pakistani newspaper reported on Monday that the
Pakistan government has “informally conveyed to India through China and
Russia that the opportunity” of the SCO summit “could be utilised for a
bilateral meeting between them”.
- In the wake of the UN Security Council designation of MasoodAzhar, New
Delhi is watching closely to see what action Pakistan takes against the JeM
- The action will also decide whether Pakistan, which is facing a full
financial scrutiny by the FATF, could be put on an even more restrictive
“blacklist” at the Orlando meeting, which Finance Minister ArunJaitley
called for on Friday.
India to cooperate with its partners on Afghanistan
- ZalmayKhalilzad, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan, held talks
with External Affairs Minister SushmaSwaraj on Monday. The crucial
interaction came days after the diplomat held talks with a Taliban
delegation in the Qatari capital Doha.
- “Both discussed the role of all regional stakeholders in bringing peace
and development in Afghanistan. India will work with key partners in days
ahead,” spokesperson of MEA Raveesh Kumar said in a social media message.
- Mr.Khalilzad also met Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale. The discussion
came in the backdrop of the telephonic conversation between Pakistan Prime
Minister Imran Khan and Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani when both sides
discussed ways of peace building to help the market and connectivity
scenario in the Af-Pak region.
- The visit of Mr.Khalilzad is significant as it aims at establishing a
broader regional discussion.
::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::
UN report claims around 1 million species under threat of extinction
- Relentless pursuit of economic growth, twinned with the impact of
climate change, has put an ”unprecedented” one million species at risk of
extinction, scientists said on Monday in a landmark report on the damage
done by modern civilisation to the natural world.
- Only a wide-ranging transformation of the global economic and
financial system could pull ecosystems that are vital to the future of human
communities worldwide back from the brink of collapse, concluded the report,
which was endorsed by 130 countries, including the U.S., Russia and China.
- The authors identified industrial farming and fishing as major
drivers with the current rate of species extinction tens to hundreds of
times higher than the average over the last 10 millionyears.
- “The report also tells us that it is not too late to make a
difference, but only if we start now at every level from local to global,”
Mr. Watson said in a statement. “By transformative change, we mean a
fundamental, system-wide reorganisation across technological, economic and
social factors, including paradigms, goals and values.”
- The report’s blunt language echoed the United Nations’
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which said in October that
profound economic and social changes would be needed to curb greenhouse
gases quickly enough to avert the most devastating consequences of a warming
Indian boxers gives a good show at FeliksStamm international boxing
- Indian boxers finished with a rich haul of six medals, including
two gold at the 36th FeliksStamm International Boxing Tournament in Warsaw,
Poland on Sunday.
- GauravSolanki and Manish Kaushik bagged one gold each. Indian
boxers also clinched a silver and three bronze.
- The 22-year-old Solanki out-punched England's William Cawley 5-0
in 52 kilogram on his way to the coveted yellow metal.
- The six-day competition saw boxers from all over the world
participating in 10 categories in the men's section and in five categories
in the women's section as they gear up for the World Championships later in
For Study Materials Call Us at +91 8800734161 (MON-SAT 11AM-7PM)