Comprehensive News Analysis – 08 December 2016

Table of Contents:

A. GS1 Related:
B. GS2 Related:

1. U.S. lawmakers urge India to ease curbs on Christian charity

C. GS3 Related:

1. Choppy seas prevent rescue of tourists from Andamans

2. Rural India hit most by cash crunch

D. GS4 Related
E. Important Editorials : A Quick Glance

The Hindu

1. The Reserve Bank of India’s big surprise

2. Three years after the Koushal judgment

3. Demonetisation is for the long run

The Indian Express

1. One month later

PIB

1. Cabinet approves MoU between India and Afghanistan on Cooperation in the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space

F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
G. BILLS/ACTS/SCHEMES/ORGS IN NEWS
H. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
I. Archives

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Useful News Articles

A. GS1 Related

Nothing here today folks!

B. GS2 Related
  1. U.S. lawmakers urge India to ease curbs on Christian charity

Category: International Relations

Topic: Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests

Key Points:

  • Compassion International (CI) is a Colorado-based NGO that has worked in India since 1968.
  • It is an American Christian charity NGO .
  • Compassion International (CI) has often been accused of being engaged in religious conversions in India.
  • It is important to note that the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA), is the law that regulates NGOs’ receipt of foreign funds into the country.
  • It is believed that Government of India’s action against Christian and climate change NGOs has been a thorn in India-U.S. relations for over six years. 
  • Earlier, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry had also voiced concerns over the treatment of Compassion International.


C. GS3 Related
  1. Choppy seas prevent rescue of tourists from Andamans

Category: Disaster Management   

Topic: Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief

Key Points:

  • Nearly 1,500 tourists remained stranded at Neil and Havelock, two famous tourist destinations of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
  • Navy ships failed to dock because of heavy swells. These heavy swells were formed due to the depression over southeast Bay of Bengal.
  • The Andaman Nicobar Tri-Service Command sent INS Bitra , INS Bangaram , INS Kumbhir and LCU 38 to evacuate the tourists in the two islands.
  • It is important to note that an LCU is a ‘landing craft unit’ that can land on the beach to make evacuation easier.
  • The local administration has issued a heavy rainfall warning. According to the Andamans’ disaster control room, wind speed will be 40-50 kmph, gusting to 60 kmph the next 48 hours.
  • Unfortunately, the stranded tourists are also facing an acute cash shortage. 


  1. Rural India hit most by cash crunch

Category: Indian Economy    

Topic: Government Policy

Key Points:

  • In the wake of the recent demonetization initiative, it is important to note that rural India has been severely hit by the lack of cash in circulation since the government’s decision to demonetise high-value currency notes.
  • To further illustrate this, Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) with 25 crore accounts across the country received just about Rs.8,000 crore of fresh currency from November 10 to November 30.
  • As a consequence to this, the RBI had recently advised banks to ensure adequate cash supply for all RRBs, rural branches of commercial banks and branches located in Agricultural produce market committees (APMCs) to enable smooth procurement.

 

D. GS4 Related
E. Important Editorials: A Quick Glance
The Hindu
  1. The Reserve Bank of India’s big surprise

Category: Indian Economy    

Topic: Government Policy  

Key Points:

  • In the wake of last month’s decision to withdraw legal tender status to high denomination currency notes, the Reserve Bank of India has surprised markets by opting to keep benchmark interest rates unchanged and cutting the outlook for full-year growth.
  • The RBI listed global factors including a) the imminent tightening of U.S. monetary policy, b) the rise in oil prices, and c) “disconcerting” domestic inflation trends that could potentially endanger its price stability goals. 
  • The fact that the RBI has adopted a “wait and watch” approach in the wake of the liquidity shock to the banking system caused by the demonetization initiative is informative. 
  • The RBI has observed that the currency replacement exercise was likely to have the biggest impact on cash-intensive sectors. 
  • It is important to note that the resultant disruptions could drag down growth in this fiscal and more data are needed before conclusions can be drawn on the full impact and persistence of such an impact. 

 

  1. Three years after the Koushal judgment

Category: Polity and Governance

Topic: Judiciary, Government Initiatives  

Key Points:

  • December 11, 2016 would mark a period of three years from the day on which the Supreme Court delivered an important judgement.
  • Unfortunately, this judgement, Koushal v. Naz Foundation. is a widely criticised judgment. 
  • With the stroke of a pen, India’s LGBT community was cast back into the shadows of illegality after a judgment of the Delhi High Court, reading down Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, was reversed in appeal. 
  • Also, the Supreme Court observed that the LGBT community was a “minuscule” minority that did not deserve the court’s time or protection.

After the Koushal judgment:

  • It is important to note that after the Koushal judgment, Indian lesbian and gay couples filed applications in different parts of the Commonwealth claiming refugee or protected status.
  • Across sections, The Koushaljudgment was cited as an example of the contemptuous attitude towards the LGBT community in India.
  • It is significant to note that in two cases in Britain, lesbian couples from India claimed that they should not be deported home, for they would suffer a risk of persecution or serious harm if they revealed their identities to their families or local communities.

 

  1. Demonetisation is for the long run

Category: Indian Economy

Topic: Government Policy  

Key Points:

  • There have been many critics of the demonetization initiative of the Government.
  • These critics have been right about the adverse short-term impact of the policy.
  • At a macro level, it is important to note that India’s economic progress is at an inflexion point. 
  • It is only rule-based capitalism combined with clean government that can transform India.

 

The Indian Express

  1. One month later

Category: Indian Economy

Topic: Government Policy  

Key Points:

  • In the wake of last month’s decision to withdraw legal tender status to high denomination currency notes, it was but natural that the financial markets had expected the Reserve Bank of India to cutting rates.
  • The RBI has poured cold water on such hopes at its fifth bi-monthly policy review.
  • The RBI has kept its key policy rate, the repo rate, unchanged.
  • This is a decision which appears to be sensible on first reading.
  • The RBI was confronted with the challenge of cutting rates to boost consumer and investor sentiment which had been impacted post demonetization.

 

PIB

  1. Cabinet approves MoU between India and Afghanistan on Cooperation in the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space

Category: International Relations  

Topic: India and its neighborhood- relations

Key Points:

  • The Union Cabinet chaired by the PM Modi has given its ex-post facto approval to the MoU between India and Afghanistan on cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space.
  • The MoU envisages cooperation between the two countries for application of space technologies in education, agriculture, weather forecasting, telecommunications, rural health, sanitation, urban development, resource mapping navigation, remote sensing and any other areas mutually agreed upon.

The MoU will benefit both countries in the following manner:

– Development of space sector in Afghanistan;

– Burnish India’s credentials as a nation with advanced space technology, one that can also assist other countries;

– Afghanistan will move towards self-reliance in the space sector;

– Help deepen bilateral ties and mutual understanding and trust between India and Afghanistan;

– Provide India with a foothold in Afghanistan’s strategic space and communication sector.

  • Further, the MoU is also expected to boost high-tech jobs in the two countries in both core Science & Technology and R&D fields.
  • With ushering in of the era of mobile and internet-based applications and commerce, better communication and internet connectivity will boost creation of jobs in diverse fields.


F. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn:
  • Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA)
  • Andaman Nicobar Tri-Service Command
  • Koushal v. Naz Foundation


G. BILLS/ACTS/SCHEMES/ORGS IN NEWS

Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA)


H. Fun with Practice Questions 🙂
Question 1: Consider the following statements, regarding the ‘India-UK ease of doing Business Conference’,
  1. The conference will be the most ambitious outreach yet undertaken on the Ease of Doing Business.
  2. It will showcase India’s focus on simplifying its business ecosystem and making it a preferred business destination, as well as the work that the UK government is doing to share the key features of its globally renowned business ecosystem and practices.
  3. Representatives from various Indian State Governments will also highlight their business reform action plan, implementation strategy, and lessons.

Which of the following statements is/are correct?

a) 1 and 2 Only

b) 2 and 3 Only

c) All, 1, 2 and 3

d) 1 and 3 Only


Question 2: Consider the following statements, 
  1. Indian Navy’s Offshore Patrol Vessel Sumitra, reached Darwin, Australia.
  2. The visit to Australia is aimed at strengthening bilateral ties and enhancing maritime security cooperation between the two countries.
  3. The ship has been deployed for multiple operational tasks, the most notable being ‘Operation Rahat’, which entailed the evacuation of personnel of various nationalities from war-torn Yemen in 2015.

Which of the following statements is/are correct?

a) 1 and 2 Only

b) 2 and 3 Only

c) All, 1, 2 and 3

d) 1 and 3 Only


Question 3: Consider the following statements regarding the recent MoU signed between India and Afghanistan on cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space,
  1. The MoU envisages cooperation between the two countries for application of space technologies in education, agriculture, weather forecasting, telecommunications, rural health, sanitation, urban development, resource mapping navigation, remote sensing and any other areas mutually agreed upon.
  2. The MoU will help Afghanistan move towards self-reliance in the space sector.
  3. The MoU will provide India with a foothold in Afghanistan’s strategic space and communication sector.

Which of the following statements is/are correct?

a) 1 and 2 Only

b) 2 and 3 Only

c) All, 1, 2 and 3

d) 1 and 3 Only


Question 4: Consider the following statements regarding the recent MoU signed between India and United Kingdom (UK) for Cooperation in the Field of Intellectual Property,
  1. The MoU seeks to establish a wide-ranging and flexible mechanism for developing and furthering the cooperation in the development of automation, new documentation and information systems in IP.
  2. It provides an opportunity for collaboration in training programmes, exchange of experts and technical exchanges and outreach activities.
  3. Implementation of the MoU will result in enhancement of the capacity of the Office of Controller General of Patents, Designs & Trademarks to examine patent applications, which in turn will impact innovation positively.

Which of the following statements is/are correct?

a) 1 and 2 Only

b) 2 and 3 Only

c) All, 1, 2 and 3

d) 1 and 3 Only


Question 5: Consider the following statements,
  1. India presently has 38 indigenously manufactured satellites operational in orbit.
  2. As on date, 29 satellites have been launched from outside the country. Out of these, for 3 satellites (Aryabhatta, Bhaskara-1 & Bhaskara-2), free launch was provided by Russia as part of Indo-Soviet friendship and for 1 satellite (Apple), Ariane offered a free launch in their developmental flight.

Which of the following statements is/are correct?

a) 1 Only

b) 2 Only

c) Both 1 and 2

d) Neither 1 nor 2

Check Your Answers

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