Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 10 October 2020

Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 10 October 2020


Supreme court questions repatriation of children by NCPCR

  • The Supreme Court on Friday sought a response from the country’s apex child rights body, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), to its request to eight States to “produce” children living in care homes before the local child welfare committees for their “immediate repatriation” with their families.
  • The NCPCR reportedly wrote to Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Mizoram, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra and Meghalaya in this regard. These States together have 1.84 lakh children in care homes. This accounts for over 70% of the children in care homes.
  • A Bench led by Justice L. NageswaraRao asked the NCPCR to respond why such repatriation of the children to their families should not be done on an individual basis. The next hearing is on November 24. The court is suomotu monitoring the welfare of children placed in care homes during the pandemic.
  • The NCPCR, in a letter on September 24, explained the need for a child to grow up in a familial environment. In an April 6 order, the court directed juvenile authorities to “proactively consider whether a child or children should be kept in the child care institutions considering the best interest, health and safety concerns”.
  • However, on Friday, the court wondered whether the NCPCR could issue such general directions to the States without considering the education, health, safety of the children, the consent of their parents and their economical situation.

PM to launch physical property cards under SVAMITVA scheme

  • Prime Minister NarendraModi will launch the physical distribution of Property Cards under the SVAMITVA Scheme tomorrow through video conferencing to transform rural India and empower millions of people. 
  • The SVAMITVA scheme, which was launched in April this year, aims to provide the record of rights to village household owners in rural areas and issue Property Cards. 
  • The Scheme is being implemented across the country in a phased manner over a period of four years and will cover around six lakh 62 thousand villages of the country.
  • The launch will enable around one lakh property holders to download their Property Cards through the SMS link delivered on their mobile phones. This would be followed by physical distribution of the Property Cards by the respective State governments.
  • These beneficiaries are from 763 villages across six States including 346 from Uttar Pradesh, 221 from Haryana, 100 from Maharashtra, 44 from Madhya Pradesh, 50 from Uttarakhand and two from Karnataka.



RBI announces no change in policy rates

  • The Reserve Bank of India in its bi-monthly Monetary Policy statement issued today has maintained a status quo keeping the key interest rates unchanged.The reverse repo rate remains unchanged at 3.35 per cent, the repo rate at four per cent.
  • The Monetary Policy Committee has also decided to maintain its accommodative stance as long as necessary at least through the current financial year and next year as Indian economy is entering into decisive phase in its fight against coronavirus.
  • In major announcements today, RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das proposed that the RTGS system for real time fund transfer to become 24X7 from December 2020.
  • He said, the RBI stands ready to undertake further measures as necessary to assure market participants of access to liquidity and easy finance conditions.The new housing loans risk weights to be linked to Loan-to-value ratio and also rationalize risk weights for all new housing loans until March 31, 2022.
  • Also the bank will extend scheme for co-lending to all NBFC, HFC. As for GDP, the growth may break out of contraction and enter positive zone by fourth quarter of current fiscal.

RBI decides to discontinue system-based automatic caution-listing of exporters

  • In an effort to provide flexibility to exporters in the realisation of export proceeds, the Reserve Bank has decided to discontinue the system-based automatic caution-listing of exporters.
  • Addressing a virtual press conference today, RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das said the decision will also empower exporters to negotiate better terms with overseas buyers. 
  • Stating that exports have been adversely affected due to the pandemic related contraction in demand, Mr. Das said the decision is likely to make the system more exporter-friendly and equitable.
  • As part of automation of the Export Data Processing and Monitoring System, the 'Caution/De-caution Listing' of exporters was automated in 2016. Accordingly, the exporters were to be caution-listed automatically, if any shipping bill against them remained outstanding for more than two years.


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UNWFP wins Nobel peace prize

  • The United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for its efforts to combat hunger around the world and improve conditions for peace in areas affected by conflict.
  • The Rome-based organisation says it helps some 97 million people in about 88 countries each year, and that one in nine people worldwide still do not have enough to eat.
  • “The need for international solidarity and multilateral cooperation is more conspicuous than ever,” Berit Reiss-Andersen, chairwoman of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, told a news conference.
  • She called the WFP a driving force in efforts to prevent the use of hunger as a weapon of war and conflict, and said the COVID-19 pandemic, which the WFP says could double hunger worldwide, had made it even more relevant.
  • WFP runs a logistics service that has dispatched medical cargoes to over 120 countries throughout the pandemic to help governments and health partners fighting COVID-19.
  • It also has provided passenger services to ferry humanitarian and health workers where commercial flights were unavailable.

Kyrgyz opposition topples government and grabs power

  • The Central Asian nation of Kyrgyzstan slid deeper into chaos today, as rival opposition factions made grabs for power.
  • Earlier, the Kyrgyz Central Election Commission declared the results of the parliamentary elections held on October 4 void, amid violent protests.
  • Meanwhile, United Nations has said that UN Secretary General is closely monitoring the situation in the Kyrgyz Republic, where protests erupted in the aftermath of the October 4 parliamentary elections, reportedly leaving one person dead and over one hundred injured.
  • The Secretary-General regretted the loss of life and urged all parties to exercise the utmost restraint and refrain from violence.
  • He urged all Kyrgyz actors to engage in dialogue and agree on a way forward within the constitutional framework.
  • The UN offered all support to find a peaceful resolution of the current situation, including through the United Nations Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia.


Genome editing technology wins Nobel prize in chemistry

  • Two women named Emmanuelle Charpentier of France, and American Jennifer Doudna have been award with the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Charpentier and Doudna were working to develop the technology of genome editing.
  • The Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) is a technology for genome editing which makes a natural defence mechanism in bacteria in order to get protection from virus attacks. 
  • Cas9 or the ‘genetic scissor’ protein is used to remove the problematic sequence in the DNA strand that is identified through programmed RNA. 
  • But, with this method, problematic sequence might regrow because of auto-repair properties of DNA strand. So, under the CRISPR technology, genetic codes are supplied while the DNA Strand is repairing itself.
  • The CRISPR technology is not 100 percent accurate so it can alter the genome. Further, there is no any regulatory permission or oversight to regulate the technology. Thus, the technology can be misused.  
  • In that regard, Jennifer Doudna has been campaigning for the development of internationally rules and guidelines for the use of CRISPR technology.


Argentina wins over Ecuador in world cup qualifier

  • Argentina got its World Cup qualifying campaign off to the perfect start on Thursday when Lionel Messi’s early penalty gave it a 1-0 win over Ecuador in a lacklustre match in Buenos Aires.
  • The Argentine FA piped fan noise around the empty Bombonera stadium and the chants of “Messi! Messi!” were vindicated as early as the 12th minute when he put Argentina ahead from the spot after Lucas Ocampos was fouled inside the penalty area.
  • Uruguay beat Chile 2-1 in their opener earlier on Thursday. Luis Suarez got Uruguay’s first from the spot with the aid of the video assistant referee (VAR).


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