Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 16 may 2019
PM assures commitment to protect tribal rights
Senior BJP leader and Prime Minister NarendraModi has said
that his government has ensured protections of rights of the tribals, and
enhanced welfare measures for them.
Speaking at Deoghar in Jharkhand today, he said that minimum
support price for forest products were increased from ten to fifty different
types of products, and a fixed share has been allotted in the forest produce, in
addition to compulsory spending of profits from minerals on tribal welfare.
He enumerated various projects -like upcoming new AIIMS, Airport
in Deoghar and new road and rail lines in Santhal region of the Jharkhand. He
also said that BJP governments at both Centre and Jharkhand are giving special
incentives to farmers.
He charged the opposition parties like Congress and JMM of
abetting illegal immigrations of Bangladeshis in the region and country.
Indian joins global initiative to counter terrorism
India has joined a major global initiative to combat
terrorism and extremism online and secure the internet.
The initiative 'Christchurch call to action' has been named
after the New Zealand city where 51 people were killed in an attack on mosques.
It was launched in Paris yesterday by India, France, New
Zealand, Canada and several other countries.
The declaration on Christchurch call to action said a free, open
and secure internet is a powerful tool by which to promote connectivity, enhance
social inclusiveness and foster economic growth.
It said the internet is, however, not immune from abuse by
terrorist and violent extremist actors, and there is a need for collective
efforts globally to secure the internet from terror groups. This was tragically
highlighted by the terrorist attacks in Christchurch which were designed to go
viral, it said.
The declaration said the Christchurch attack highlighted the
urgent need for action and enhanced cooperation among the wide range of actors
with influence over this issue, including governments, civil society, and online
service providers, such as social media companies, to eliminate terrorist and
violent extremist content online.
The initiative outlines collective, voluntary commitments from
governments and online service providers intended to address the issue of
terrorist and violent extremist content online and to prevent the abuse of the
RBI releases vision document for safe and secure e-payment
Reserve Bank of India has released a vision document for
ensuring a safe, secure, convenient, quick and affordable e-payment system.
According to RBI release on Wednesday the 'Payment and
Settlement Systems in India: Vision 2019 - 2021', with its core theme of
'Empowering Exceptional E-payment Experience', envisages to achieve "a highly
digital and cash-lite society" through the goal posts of competition,
cost-effectiveness, convenience and confidence (4Cs).
The RBI said the payment systems landscape will continue to
change with further innovation and entry of more players which is expected to
ensure the optimal cost to the customers and freer access to multiple payment
It said that the bank will implement the approach outlined in
this Vision during the period 2019 - 2021. It further said that the approach of
the RBI will continue to be of minimal intervention in the pricing of charges to
customers for digital payments, all efforts will be made towards facilitating
the operation of payment systems which are efficient and price-attractive.
The RBI said that the document talks about creating customer
awareness, setting up a 24X7 helpline and self-regulatory organisation for
system operators and service providers, among others. It added that the
'no-compromise' approach towards safety and security of payment systems remains
a hallmark of the vision.
Government to prepare working plan to eneable farmers to grow
Union Minister NitinGadkari today said the government is
working on a plan that will enable farmers to grow new crops instead of the
Addressing an election rally at Dhar in Madhya Pradesh, he said
that national security is paramount for BJP. He said that India needs a Prime
Minister like NarendraModi who can firmly deal with the issue of terrorism.
Referring to various public welfare schemes of the central
government, Mr Gadkari said that in the last five years, there has been many
development works in the country like the cleaning of Ganga and building of
waterways in rivers.
Mr Gadkari also addressed a public rally in Alirajpur in the
state. Senior Congress leader and former Chief Minister Digvijay Singh also
addressed a public meeting in Dhar district today.
Saudi says attack on oil ships threatening global supplies
Saudi Arabia, the world's top crude exporter, has said that
attacks on two of its tankers and a major pipeline targeted the security of
global oil supplies.
The Saudi cabinet affirmed yesterday evening that such acts of
terrorism and sabotage do not only target the kingdom but also the global
Yesterday, Drone attacks shut down one of the kingdom's main oil
pipelines. It further increased Gulf tensions after the mysterious sabotage of
four ships, two of them Saudi tankers, recently.
The drone strikes hit two pumping stations on the kingdom's
east-west pipeline, which can carry five million barrels of crude per day and
provides a strategic alternative route for Saudi exports.
Yemen's Huthi rebels claimed responsibility for the strikes and
said they were a response to "crimes" committed by Saudi Arabia and its allies
during more than four years of war in support of the government.
US declares national emergency over IT threat
US President Donald Trump has declared a national emergency
to protect American computer networks from foreign adversaries.
Mr. Trump signed an executive order which effectively bars US
companies from using foreign telecoms believed to pose a security risk to the
Mr Trump does not name any company specifically in the order.
However, analysts suggest it is mainly directed at Chinese telecommunications
A number of countries - including the US - have raised concerns
that the company's products could be used by China for surveillance. Huawei has
said its work does not pose any
threat. The US is also embroiled in an escalating trade war with China.
::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::
Study claims moon shrinking due to interior cooling
The Moon is shrinking as its interior cools ,getting over 50
metres skinnier through the last several hundred million years and causing
quakes on the lunar surface, a study has found. Just as a grape wrinkles as
it shrinks down to a raisin, the Moon gets wrinkles as it shrinks,
Unlike the flexible skin on a grape, the Moon’s surface crust is
brittle, so it breaks as the Moon shrinks, forming “thrust faults” where one
section of crust is pushed up over a neighbouring part.
These fault scarps resemble small stair-step shaped cliffs when
seen from the lunar surface, typically tens of metres high and extending for
The study, published in the journal Nature Geoscience, analysed
data from four seismometers placed on the Moon by the Apollo astronauts using an
algorithm, or mathematical programme, developed to pinpoint quake locations
detected by a sparse seismic network.
Weathering from solar and space radiation gradually darkens
material on the lunar surface, so brighter areas indicate regions that are
freshly exposed to space, as expected if a recent moonquake sent material
sliding down a cliff.
Igor Stimac appointed Indian football team coach
Croatian World Cupper Igor Stimac has been appointed Indian
football team head coach for a two-year term.
The national team has been without a coach since the departure
of Stephen Constantine in January, following the creditable show at the AFC
The appointment was made by the All India Football Federation's
Executive Committee today. The 51-year-old Stimac, who was part of Croatia's
1998 World Cup squad that finished third in France, has over 18 years of
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