Comprehensive News Analysis - 03 July 2016

Table of Contents:

A. GS1 Related:

1. 6,000-year-old stone tombs may have been first ‘telescopes’

B. GS2 Related:

1. Green fine on Adani port not waived: Ministry

2. Gold prices likely to remain high in the current year due to Brexit

3. Delhi hopes UN will push global terror convention

C. GS3 Related:

1. Start-ups: 571 entrepreneurs queue up for tax benefits

2. Apply polluter pays principle to U.S.: CJI

F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
G. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
H. Archives

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Useful News Articles

A. GS1 Related


1. 6,000-year-old stone tombs may have been first ‘telescopes’

Topic: scientific achievements in the ancient world

Category: History of the world

Location: The Hindu

Key points:

  • Ancient megalithic tombs — such as those at the 6,000 year old Seven-Stone Antas in Portugal — may have been the first astronomical tools used to watch the skies, millennia before telescopes were invented, scientists say. Astronomers are exploring what they believe to be the first astronomical observing tool, potentially used by prehistoric humans 6,000 year
  • For a better view of the night sky They suggest that the long, narrow entrance passages to ancient stone, or ‘megalithic’, tombs may have enhanced what early human cultures could see in the night sky, an effect that could have been interpreted as the ancestors granting special power to the initiated
  • They are sacred spaces These spaces are thought to have been sacred, and the sites may have been used for rites of passage, where the initiate would spend the night inside the tomb, with no natural light apart from that shining down the narrow entrance lined with the remains of the tribe’s ancestors.
  • Power of the naked eye The project targets how the human eye, without the aid of any telescopic device, can see stars given sky brightness and colour.
  • As a seasonal marker The first sighting in the year of a star after its long absence from the night sky might have been used as a seasonal marker, and could indicate for example the start of a migration to summer grazing grounds

 

B. GS2 Related


  1. Green fine on Adani port not waived: Ministry

Topic: Administration

Category: Polity-Governance

Location: The Hindu

Key points:

  • The Ministry of Environment and Forests, in a late night statement on Saturday, said the Adani Port and SEZ Ltd (APSEZ), may have to pay a fine far greater than what was fixed by the UPA government in 2012, for the environmental damage caused by the construction of its port project in Mundra, Gujarat. However, it also underlined that a “fine” of Rs 200 crore, imposed on the company during the UPA government’s tenure “was not backed by any law under the Environment Protection Act and not legally correct.”.
  • This was in response to a media report on Saturday that claimed that the APSEZ was spared from a Rs 200 crore fine that was imposed on the company in 2013. That year, the United Progressive Alliance had issued a show cause notice to M/s Adani Port and SEZ Ltd. based on a report by a committee chaired by Sunita Narain, Director General, Centre for Science and Environment. The report — based on an investigation and made public through a Right to Information query — recommended that an Environment Relief Fund (ERF) worth one per cent of the project cost or Rs 200 crore, whichever was higher, ought to be created to remedy any environmental damage incurred

 

  • The UPA government in April 2014 noted that the “creation of ERF as not supported by any Law,” said Mr Sinha. Not withstanding that, the NDA government has also accepted the recommendations of the Sunita Narain Committee and, in its statement, said it had imposed stringent conditions with open ended financial commitment by APSEZL.

 

2. Gold prices likely to remain high in the current year due to Brexit

Topic: India-world

Category: International relations

Location: The Hindu

Key points:

  • Gold prices likely to move up further in the current calendar year owing to uncertainties in the global markets as U.K. voted to exit from the European Union. Gold prices shot up to its highest level in three years, in the aftermath of the Brexit referendum, on last Friday, as investors rushed to grab safer assets, leaving equities and other risk assets, which were already facing selling pressure.
  • . The prices of gold hit a three-year peak at around $1,355 per ounce on June 23, and hovering between $1310 and 1,320 per ounce in the international market currently. Earlier the highest price recorded was at around $1,900 per ounce in 2012 which moved down to $1,100 per ounce in the subsequent period, mostly attributed to the sluggish purchase by the central banks
  • “Later it recovered to US$1300 levels in the beginning of 2016 due to weak U.S. data. Last Friday it touched a three year high of around $1,355 per ounce on Brexit news. It is expected to go up to $1,400 per ounce in the coming days,
  • Global commodities like Gold don’t overnight change the main trend. Gold is expected into a large sideways market having resistance at Rs 33500 – 34500 and at lower end Rs 25000 in the Indian market,
  • The risk to reward ratio currently is not favourable for long trades. However in the short term there is possibility for higher levels but soon the gold price will try to catch up with the lower end of the trading band. However, to the extent of dollar appreciation the gold prices will rise in India,
  • The disparity in the prices, he said, is due to conversion costs, which is more or less constant and will remain so. In fact the Indian price of gold is the derivative of international markets subject to currency adjustments.
  • WGC predicted that purchases of gold coins by small retail investors, which were already up sharply in the months running up to the vote (Brexit), should accelerate further. According to the world body, gold is a high quality and liquid asset and will provide investors with a hedge against market uncertainty, economic, political and intervention risk.
  • Time wise, beginning from December 2015, the present upward trend would remain intact for a minimum time period of 6 months or it can even extend up to 18 months.

 

3. Delhi hopes UN will push global terror convention

Topic: International groupings

Category: International relations

Location: The Hindu

Key points

  • India has revived its two decade old proposal for the adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT) at the UN General Assembly in September this year, given the recent spate of terror attacks across the globe.
  • As the attack in Dhaka has shown, international terrorism has become the biggest scourge facing the civilised world. India has been trying to build convergence around the CCIT, pending since 1996, so that we can plug an important legal lacuna in the fight against terror,” explained a senior official involved in the process in New Delhi and New York..
  • India has been able to complete a draft which effectively counters the opposition from the three main blocs that have raised objections: the U.S., the Organisation of Islamic Countries and the Latin American countries
  • The original draft that was tabled in 1996 and discussed until April 2013 includes amongst key objectives: to have a universal definition of terrorism that all 193-members of the UNGA will adopt into their own criminal law, to ban all terror groups and shut down terror camps regardless of their stated objectives, to prosecute all terrorists under special laws, and to make cross-border terrorism an extraditable offence worldwide
  • The most powerful objector, the U.S. has been worried about the application of the CCIT to its own military forces especially with regard to interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq. Changes to the draft, will clarify that “the activities of armed forces during an armed conflict” will not be governed by the present convention. On the issue of bank loan frauds, Justice Shah said it was the domain of the RBI which can act and comment upon them.
  • Latin American countries that had concerns about human rights laws have also been accommodated by the changes to the draft. A particular push was made by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to win over the OIC countries, and during meetings with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) ministers in New York, and the meeting with the 22-member Arab League leadership in January 2016 that have so far been worried about the impact of the CCIT on countries like Pakistan and Palestine
  • Significantly, despite the current impasse over the NSG, China, that recently blocked India’s moves for a UN ban on Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar, is not expected to pose hurdles for the CCIT, having endorsed it in BRICS and RIC (Russia-India-China) statements. however, warned that Pakistan and a few other countries would most probably oppose India’s move to the hilt.

 

C. GS3 Related


1. Start-ups: 571 entrepreneurs queue up for tax benefits

Topic: Schemes and programs of govt

Category: Economic development

Location: The Hindu

 

Key points

  • As many as 571 budding entrepreneurs have filed applications as on June 24 with the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) for recognition as innovative startups to avail tax breaks and other benefits.
  • Out of these, only 12 are eligible for consideration by the inter-ministerial board for tax benefits, Startup India tweeted. Startup India is an initiative of the DIPP.Seven have submitted all documents and are eligible for Startup India benefits and tax exemption and 106 have submitted all documents but are not eligible for tax exemptions, it said. “Remaining applicants will receive hand holding support from Startup India Hub,” it added.
  • The inter-ministerial board validates the innovative nature of the business for granting tax related benefits.
  • In January, Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled a slew of incentives to boost start-up businesses, offering them a tax holiday and inspector raj-free regime for three years, capital gains tax exemption and Rs.10,000 crore corpus to fund them.India has the third-largest number of start-ups globally.


2. Apply polluter pays principle to U.S.: CJI

Topic : Environmental protection

Category: Environmental Impact assesment

Location: The Hindu

Key points

  • It is easy to pin accusations of environment degradation and climate change on emerging economies like India, while advanced nations like the United States have been emitting carbon 10 times more than India for the past 200 years, Chief Justice of India
  • Speaking at a symposium on international law here, he said the entire human race was affected by the excesses of industrialised nations like the U.S. “The depletion of the ozone layer, affecting the entire human race, is not because India is emerging or because we are dependent on coal or because of our thermal plants, which have come under criticism from environmental activists from within the country and outside,” he said.
  • Chief Justice Thakur said an international framework should be evolved to apply the polluter pays principle to advanced economies like the U.S. “In Kyoto, a resolution was passed, and they decided that developed economies should reduce their emissions by at least one per cent. The U.S. refused. Environmental degradation is because of the emissions from industrialised countries,”
  • India is also affected if environment is harmed in Pakistan or Bangladesh and vice-versa. So an international law based on comity of nations taking into consideration the humanity living in both industrialised and non-industrialised nations should be framed
  • It was a Supreme Court Bench led by Chief Justice Thakur that revived a 30-year-old PIL filed by activist lawyer M.C. Mehta to rid river Ganga of pollution, even asking the government if there was any chance of cleaning up the 2,500 km long holy river during its current term in power. Chief Justice Thakur is also monitoring the Supreme Court ban on luxury diesel vehicles and SUVs with over 2000CC capacity in the National Capital .
  • Brushing aside objections raised by car manufacturers against the ban, the Supreme Bench had observed that it is a “few rich” who use these cars which have become a threat to the life and health of the larger public.This order also breaks a historic barrier by making citizens, albeit affluent ones, accountable for the suffering of their less-advantaged fellow citizens.
D. GS4 Related

Nothing here today folks!


E. Important Editorials: A Quick Glance

Nothing here today folks!

 

The Hindu

Nothing here today folks!


F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
  • BREXIT
  • Adani port
  • Start-up India
  • Global Terror Convention
  • Environmental protection Act
  • Environmental relief fund (ERF)
  • Polluters Pay
  • PIL
G. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂

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