Comprehensive News Analysis - 19 April 2017

Table of Contents:

A. GS1 Related:
B. GS2 Related:


1. Respecting national anthem non-negotiable: Government in Supreme Court

2. Hindi may be made compulsory till Class 10 in CBSE schools, Kendriya Vidyalyas

3. Leaders to speak more in Hindi

4. Phase I clinical trial of Zika vaccine to begin next month


1. Australia visa cut to hit Indian IT workers

2. Modi, McMaster discuss security

3. CPEC unrelated to Kashmir issue: China

C. GS3 Related:


1. ‘Improve punctuality of trains or face action’

2. Common duct policy’ soon

D. GS4 Related:
E. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn

1. Mandamus

G. Practice Questions for UPSC Prelims Exam
H. Archives


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Useful News Articles for UPSC Current Affairs

A. GS1 Related

Nothing here for Today!!!


B. GS2 Related
Category: POLITY

1. Respecting national anthem non-negotiable: Government in Supreme Court

What’s in news?

Supreme Court orders timeline:

  • October 2016 Case: A petition filed by Shyam Narayan Chouksey.
  • It wants Parliament to apply its mind and define ‘respect’ for the national anthem and flag under Article 51A (a) of the Constitution.
  • If not, it alternatively wants the Supreme Court to issue a mandamus to the government to frame guidelines.
  • November 30, 2016 order– it is compulsory for all to stand up in cinema halls when the national anthem is played.
  • Later in December 2016, the court had exempted physically challenged persons from standing up for the anthem.
  • April-18-2017 (i.e.,yesterday), the court exempted persons -who are wheel chair users, those with autism, persons suffering from cerebral palsy, multiple disabilities, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, leprosy cured, muscular dystrophy and deaf and blind from the ambit of its November orders.

Centre response: respect for the national anthem, flag is “a matter of national pride and non-negotiable”

Supreme Court response: It questioned the need to expressively define ‘respect’ for the two national symbols when such a feeling of reverence is already inherent in the Constitution.

Another petition : SC issued a notice to the Centre on a petition filed by advocate Ashwini Upadhyay to make singing or rendering of national anthem and song compulsory in Parliament, Assemblies, public offices and all schools.

2. Hindi may be made compulsory till Class 10 in CBSE schools, Kendriya Vidyalyas

What’s in news?

  • Presidential order on promoting Hindi
  • The language- Hindi should be made a compulsory subject up to Class 10 in all CBSE (schools affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Education) schools and Kendriya Vidyalayas.
  • The human resource and development (HRD) ministry to form a policy in consultation with the state governments to make the language compulsory.
  • The Centre should form a policy in consultation with state governments.
  • These recommendations were made in the ninth report of the Committee of Parliament on Official Language.
  • CBSE had last year recommended a three-language formula—English and any two Indian languages—to be expanded to classes 9 and 10. However, the HRD ministry is yet to take a call on the suggestion.

3. Leaders to speak more in Hindi

What’s in news?

  • All dignitaries, including the President and Union Ministers, may soon start giving speeches in Hindi if a parliamentary panel’s recommendations accepted by President Pranab Mukherjee are implemented.
  • The recommendation that all dignitaries, especially those who can read and speak Hindi, may be requested to give their speech/statement in Hindi only, has been accepted.
  • The President has accepted many other recommendations, including announcements on Indian aeroplanes being made in Hindi before in English.
  • On flights, half of the reading material should consist of Hindi newspapers and magazines as “Hindi is grossly neglected by airlines”, as per the panel’s recommendation, accepted by the President.
  • The Ministry of Civil Aviation has been asked to ensure implementation of the recommendations.
  • Mukherjee has accepted another recommendation of the Committee that maximum usage of Hindi should be ensured on all tickets of Air India and Pawan Hans helicopters.
  • A recommendation favouring full cent percent availability of bilingual training material in bilingual at the Mussoorie-based Lal Bahadur Shashtri National Administrative Academy, where the premier institute to train civil servants is trained including those in Indian Administrative Service (IAS), has also been accepted.

4. Phase I clinical trial of Zika vaccine to begin next month

What’s in news?

  • Bharat Biotech International Ltd in Hyderabad will start the Phase I clinical trial of Zika virus vaccine in India.
  • The Phase I is being initiated based on the promising results in animals trials. In the animal trials, two doses of the vaccine made using an African Zika virus strain conferred 100% protection against mortality and disease in mice.
  • The protection was the same when the mice were infected with an Asian and an African Zika strains.


1. Australia visa cut to hit Indian IT workers

What’s in news?

  • Recently Australian government decided to scrap Australian “457” visa programme that allowed Australian companies to hire Indians in a number of skilled jobs.
  • Aastralian government decided to replace the programme with a more stringent system, making it difficult to hire non-Australian citizens.
  • Impact:
  • The new visa programme will cut more than 200 eligible jobs for skilled migrants — from 651 to 435
  • Visa fees are set to increase
  • Visas will be restricted to filling “critical skills shortages”.
  • Indian government response to this move-Indian government warned that such a move could have an impact on negotiations on the free trade agreement — Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreements (CECA) — between both countries.

Key facts:

  • India provides the highest number of temporary skilled workers to Australia – eight out of the top 10 occupations for Indian 457 visa holders were IT professionals.
  • According to the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection, Indians constituted 76% of the total ‘457’ visas issued in the three IT streams, and 57% of permanent migrant visas issued in the skilled stream of workers last year.

2. Modi, McMaster discuss security

What’s in news?

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday held talks peninsula with the visiting U.S. National Security Adviser, Lt. General H.R. McMaster

Area of focus:

  • Security situation in the extended region, including in Afghanistan, West Asia and the DPRK [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea].
  • Exchanged views on how both countries can work together to effectively address the challenge of terrorism and to advance regional peace, security and stability.

3. CPEC unrelated to Kashmir issue: China

 What’s in news?
  • China reinforced its call for India’s participation in the Belt and Road connectivity initiative, telling that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), on which India has its reservations, was not linked to the Kashmir issue.
  • India has objected to the CPEC as it passes through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
  • Beijing’s high profile Belt and Road Forum on May 14-

28 heads of state or government had affirmed their participation at the summit, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, Indonesian President Joko Widodo and State Councilor Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi.


C. GS3 Related


1. ‘Improve punctuality of trains or face action’

What’s in news?

  • Recent years has seen a rise in the number of complaints about late running of trains. The punctuality rate has fallen to 79% during April 1-16 period, as compared to 84% in the corresponding period last year.
  • Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has cracked the whip, asking officials concerned to improve punctuality or “face action”.
  • Action taken: Zonal heads have been asked to deploy a senior-level officer between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m. immediately to monitor the situation and address the problems to prevent delays.

2. Common duct policy’ soon

What’s in news?

  • The Centre is likely to soon come out with a new policy under which a common duct will be laid across a city and service providers such as telcos and digital TV players can lease these ducts to pass their fibre through it to offer services to consumers.


  • Reduce operational cost of firms
  • Remove right of way challenges
  • Eliminate the need for frequent digging up of roads.
  • Additional revenue resource for the municipalities.

D. GS4 Related

Nothing here for Today


PIB Articles    Editorials Roundup


E. Concepts-in-News: Related Concepts to Revise/Learn 


Mandamus (“We command”) is a judicial remedy in the form of an order from a superior court, to any government subordinate court, corporation, or public authority—to do some specific act which that body is obliged under law to do and which is in the nature of public duty, and in certain cases one of a statutory duty. It cannot be issued to compel an authority to do something against statutory provision.



Article 51A. Fundamental duties It shall be the duty of every citizen of India

(a) to abide by the Constitution and respect its ideals and institutions, the national Flag and the National Anthem;

(b) to cherish and follow the noble ideals which inspired our national struggle for freedom;

(c) to uphold and protect the sovereignty, unity and integrity of India;

(d) to defend the country and render national service when called upon to do so;

(e) to promote harmony and the spirit of common brotherhood amongst all the people of India transcending religious, linguistic and regional or sectional diversities; to renounce practices derogatory to the dignity of women;

(f) to value and preserve the rich heritage of our composite culture;

(g) to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers and wild life, and to have compassion for living creatures;

(h) to develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform;

(i) to safeguard public property and to abjure violence;

(j) to strive towards excellence in all spheres of individual and collective activity so that the nation constantly rises to higher levels of endeavour and achievement.

G. Practice Questions for UPSC Prelims Exam

Question 1: With reference to Departmental Standing Committees, which of 
the following statements is/are correct?
  1. The main objective of such committees is to secure more accountability of the Executive to the Parliament, particularly financial accountability.
  2. Each such committee consists of members only from the Lok Sabha.

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2
Question 2: The Governor has certain special responsibilities to discharge 
according to the directions issued by the President. In this regard, the governor, 
though has to consult the council of ministers led by the chief minister, acts 
finally on his discretion. Consider the following pairs:
  1. State – Special Responsibility of Governor
  2. Manipur – Law and Order in the state
  3. Arunachal Pradesh – Regarding administration of the hill areas in the state
  4. Maharashtra – Establishment of separate development boards for Vidarbha and Marathwada

Which of the pairs above is/are correctly matched?

  1. 1 and 2 only
  2. 2 and 3 only
  3. 3 only
  4. 1, 2 and 3
Question 3: The Supreme Court’s power to hear Inter-State Water Disputes 
can be classified under which jurisdicaion?
  1. Original Jurisdiction
  2. Appellate Jurisdiction
  3. Writ Jurisdiction
  4. Advisory Jurisdiction
Question 4: ‘UDAN’, recently seen in the news, is a scheme launched by the 
Government of India. This scheme is ________.
  1. A scholarship instituted to award meritorious students belonging to Economically Weaker Sections among the upper castes in the state of Gujarat.
  2. The Railway Ministry’s efforts to increase the average train speed along the existing tracks.
  3. The Civil Aviation Ministry’s Regional Connectivity Scheme.
  4. A collaboration of the Railways Ministry and the Environment Ministry aimed at reducing road transport’s share in freight traffic and its concomitant increase in railway’s share.

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