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Daily News Analysis 03-12-2015

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

ESSENCE OF THE ARTICLE

1.         

 

Deal to end blockade reached: Nepal Deputy PM (Page 12)

a)     I.R

a)    In his visit to India, Nepals Deputy PM and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kamal Thapa told that a three-step political agreement to resolve the crippling economic blockade has been reached between the govt of Nepal and the protesting Madhesi parties.

2.

Nuclear pact, trip to Varanasi on cards during Abes visit (Page 13)

a)     I.R

a)     Japans PM Shinzo Abe will visit India from December 11-13, during which he is expected to visit Varanasi along with PM Modi.

3.

Centre to amend 2 laws to meet climate goals (Page 13)

a)     International

a)     India will amend the Electricity Act and the Energy Conservation Act in order to achieve the efficiencies that it has pledged to the UNFCCC meeting.

4.

At WTO talks, India to oppose bid at dilution (Page 12)

a)     International

a)     At the coming Nairobi ministerial meeting of the WTO, India is likely to oppose efforts by rich countries to dilute the development dimension of the Doha Round negotiations, which are aimed at reaching an agreement to liberalise global trade.

5.

Sushma may attend Afghan meet (Page 12)

a)     International

a)     The govt is strongly considering sending External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to Islamabad next week for the Heart of Asia conference on Afghanistan.

6.

Sri Lanka may seek IMF aid (Page 14)

a)     International

a)     Cautioning the people of Sri Lanka of an unpredictable world scenario, politically and economically in the near future, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said his govt might have to approach the IMF for a standby agreement.

7.

Suu Kyi, President discuss transition (Page 14)

a)     International

a)     Nearly a month after her partys resounding election win, Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi held closed-door talks with Myanmars outgoing President to discuss what both said they hope will be a smooth transition of power.

8.

Rajiv killers merit no hope of freedom: SC (Pages 1 and 13)

a)     National

b)     Polity

a)    The Supreme Court held that the diabolic act of the killers of the former PM Rajiv Gandhi shattered the great faith of an entire country and they do not even deserve a ray of hope that they will be released one day.

9.

On hold and accommodative (Page 15)

a)     Economy

a)     The central message of RBI Governor Rajans latest decision to leave interest rates unchanged, and stress that the monetary stance remains accommodative, is that neither an economic recovery nor inflation trends are entrenched enough at moment for more decisive action.

10.

BRICS Banks Kazbekov welcomes yuans inclusion in IMF reserve currency basket (Page 16)

a)     Economy

a)     Vladimir Kazbekov (the Vice-President of the New Development Bank of the BRICS grouping) has welcomed the inclusion of the Chinese yuan in the IMF basket of reserve currencies, as it would benefit the five emerging economies.

11.

Bid to restore Channapatna craft to its original glory (Page 8)

a)     National

b)     Geography

a)    The traditional wooden toy-and-doll craft, with perfected lacquer-ware of Channapatna (on the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway), may be protected by a GI tag but today a crisis stares the industry in the face.

 

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

BACKGROUND

IMPORTANT POINTS

1.         

 

Deal to end blockade reached: Nepal Deputy PM (Page 12)

a)     I.R

a)     India – Nepal relations

b)     Nepals economic blockade

c)     Nepas new Constitution

d)     Madhesis concerns

 

a)    In his visit to India, Nepals Deputy PM and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kamal Thapa told that a three-step political agreement to resolve the crippling economic blockade has been reached between the govt of Nepal and the protesting Madhesi parties.

b)     Under the framework agreement, the issue of territorial demarcation of the Madhesis and their cultural and political rights would be adequately addressed.

c)     A key aspect of the solution package will be the constitutional amendments. He pointed out that the Nepal govt has proposals for amendments ready and will clear the ambiguities around the process.

2.

Nuclear pact, trip to Varanasi on cards during Abes visit (Page 13)

a)     I.R

a)     India – Japan relations

b)     Civil Nuclear agreement

c)     Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT)

d)     NSG

e)     MTCR

f)     Delhi-Mumbai Industrial corridor project

 

a)     Japans PM Shinzo Abe will visit India from December 11-13, during which he is expected to visit Varanasi along with PM Modi.

b)     While the two PMs are expected to discuss Japans considerable outlay in Indian infrastructure, including $100-billion Delhi-Mumbai Industrial corridor project, a slew of other agreements that have been delayed since their last summit in Aug 2014 are on the agenda.

c)    At the top of the list are the Indo-Japan nuclear cooperation agreement and a deal for India to buy U-2 amphibian aircraft, both of which did not fructify during Modis visit to Japan in 2014. While there is no confirmation that nuclear deal will be signed during this visit, any positive announcement will be a big boost for Indias ambition to join various international nuclear regimes, including the NSG and MTCR.

d)     Japan has always taken a strident position on Indias refusal to sign the NPT, and its approval for a civil nuclear agreement will be a major signal of Indias position on the world stage.

3.

Centre to amend 2 laws to meet climate goals (Page 13)

a)     International

b)     National

a)     Paris Climate Summit 2015

b)     UNFCCC

c)     Montreal Protocol

d)     Indias Electricity Act

e)     Indias Energy Conservation Act

f)     Perform, Achieve, Trade (PAT) scheme

 

a)     India will amend the Electricity Act and the Energy Conservation Act in order to achieve the efficiencies that it has pledged to the UNFCCC meeting. Tightening the use of energy across industry and other sectors would need rules under specific laws, and govt intends to do introduce these.

b)   The previous instance when India undertook a similar measure was for the Montreal Protocol when it issued the Ozone Rules to prevent the release of substances that affect the ozone layer, notably chlorofluorocarbons.

c)     Indias companies (particularly in the cement and steel sectors) have also been able to achieve globally reckoned energy efficiencies. Under the Perform, Achieve, Trade scheme for industries that was in force until March 2015, trading of the energy savings certificates by those industries that achieved a surplus would start in January.

d)     The second phase of the PAT scheme has set a target of covering more than 50 percent of energy use.

4.

At WTO talks, India to oppose bid at dilution (Page 12)

a)     International

a)     Nairobi ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organisation (WTO)

b)     Doha Development Agenda

c)     Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement

 

a)     At the coming Nairobi ministerial meeting of the WTO, India is likely to oppose efforts by rich countries to dilute the development dimension of the Doha Round negotiations, which are aimed at reaching an agreement to liberalise global trade.

b)     Sources said that India is also expected to resist attempts by developed world to create divisions among the developing countries (including the least developed countries).

c)     The WTO does not define developing or developed countries. Members can apply the principle of self-election and themselves decide if they are to be labelled as developing countries.

d)  Other members can question any member about its decision to label itself as developing with an aim to take advantage of provisions available to developing countries. However, the WTO recognises the least developed countries as designated by the UN.

e)     Significantly, there are attempts by the rich countries to redefine developmental aspects of Doha Development Agenda negotiations at Nairobi meeting by modifying existing agenda and including, what they call, more relevant issues currently challenging global trade.

f)     They said the recent TPP agreement (spearheaded by US and including 11 other pacific countries) has emboldened the West to attempt to link WTO trade rules to topics not covered under the WTO norms (but included in the TPP) as part of the final Nairobi declaration.

5.

Sushma may attend Afghan meet (Page 12)

a)     International

a)     Heart of Asia conference on Afghanistan

b)     SAARC summit

a)     The govt is strongly considering sending External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to Islamabad next week for the Heart of Asia conference on Afghanistan.

b)     Modi has already accepted an invitation to attend the SAARC summit in Pakistan next year, which would make him the first Prime Minister to visit Pakistan since 2004.

c)     In November, the Pakistan govt had sent an invitation to Swaraj to attend the ministerial part of the Heart of Asia conference (which is an annual donor conference to discuss Afghanistan), scheduled for December 7-9 in Islamabad.

6.

Sri Lanka may seek IMF aid (Page 14)

a)     International

a)     Sri Lankas internal issues

b)     IMF stand-by arrangement

a)     Cautioning the people of Sri Lanka of an unpredictable world scenario, politically and economically in the near future, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said his govt might have to approach IMF for a standby agreement.

b)     The IMF stand-by arrangement is an economic program of Fund involving financial aid to a member state in need of financial assistance.

c)     The PM said the ongoing war against the Islamic State in Syria and the inclusion of the Chinese currency in the IMFs reserve currency basket are going to impact us and the rest of the world economically. The projection for worlds economic growth rate had been lowered from 3.3 percent to 3.1 percent.

d)     To overcome various challenges, the Prime Minister said the country would have to ensure that it grew at a rate of 6.5 percent initially and 8 or 9 percent subsequently.

7.

Suu Kyi, President discuss transition (Page 14)

a)     International

a)     Myanmars internal issues

b)     National League for Democracy (NLD)

a)     Nearly a month after her partys resounding election win, Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi held closed-door talks with Myanmars outgoing President to discuss what both said they hope will be a smooth transition of power.

b)     Myanmar started moving from a half-century of dictatorship toward democracy in 2011, when military rulers inexplicably agreed to hand over power to a nominally civilian government headed by President Thein Sein, a general turned reformist.

c)     Suu Kyis NLD easily won the Nov 8 elections, securing enough seats in both the lower and upper houses of Parliament to form a government.

d)     A clause in the 2008 military-directed constitution bars her from the presidency, but she has vowed to rule by proxy.

e)     By law, the military still controls a quarter of the seats in Parliament, giving it veto power over all constitutional amendments. It also has a grip on all key security portfolios.

8.

Rajiv killers merit no hope of freedom: SC (Pages 1 and 13)

a)     National

b)     Polity

a)     Rajiv Gandhi assassination case

b)     Death penalty

c)     Criminal Procedure Code (CPC)

a)    The Supreme Court held that the diabolic act of killers of the former PM Rajiv Gandhi shattered the great faith of an entire country and they do not even deserve a ray of hope that they will be released one day.

b)     Virtually sealing the fate of seven life-term convicts, a Constitution Bench rejected Tamil Nadus arguments that the seven prisoners should not be robbed of their hope to be freed on remission.

c)     The majority judgment further laid down the law that the Centre, and not the State govt, will have the primacy in deciding whether remission should be granted to life-term convicts in the cases which concerned the CBI or any Central agency as in the case of Rajiv Gandhi killers.

d)     Noting that criminals of all types are on the rise and reformation of prisoners had not worked but only produced more crime in society, Supreme Court said the judiciary should show no mercy in sending a man to the gallows or to jail for life in heinous crimes.

e)    The apex court was dealing with the legality of a special category of sentence by which constitutional courts can mandatorily send a person convicted in a heinous crime like rape, dacoity, gang-rape and terrorist crimes to imprisonment of 20 to 40 years without remission.

f)     Under the CPC, a life convict can apply for remission after serving 14 years of his sentence. The provision is reformative in nature. This special sentencing for 20 to 40 years depriving prisoners of their statutory right to apply for remission was introduced in the 2008 Swami Shraddananda murder case judgment as an alternative to death penalty.

9.

On hold and accommodative (Page 15)

a)     Economy

a)     Monetary policy

b)     Inflation

c)     Retail inflation

d)     consumer price index (CPI)

e)     Fiscal consolidation

f)     RBI

a)     The central message of RBI Governor Rajans latest decision to leave interest rates unchanged, and stress that the monetary stance remains accommodative, is that neither an economic recovery nor inflation trends are entrenched enough at moment for more decisive action.

b)    External demand continues to remain weak - with global growth and trade becalmed by an anaemic Euro area, a slowing China and a US economy coping with an accumulation of inventory, year-low consumer confidence and a strengthening dollar.

c)     On the domestic front, while early results from the RBIs survey of order books, inventories and capacity utilisation point to an uptick in new manufacturing orders in the second quarter, other indicators (especially from the sizeable rural economy) are far from reassuring.

d)   Retail inflation as measured by the CPI accelerated for third successive month in October, pushed up by a sharp increase in food costs. And taking a benign oil price environment for granted, given the potential for geopolitical shocks from the volatile Middle East, has its own inherent hazards.

e)    More significantly, the RBI has for the moment opted to trust the govts commitment to its fiscal consolidation goals in its calculus of the inflationary impact of the Seventh Pay Commissions proposals.

f)     With only about half of the 125 basis points cut in policy rate conveyed to borrowers, the RBI is racing to ensure that a clean-up of lenders balance sheets can help free up funds toward productive credit flows.

10.

BRICS Banks Kazbekov welcomes yuans inclusion in IMF reserve currency basket (Page 16)

a)     Economy

a)     BRICS

b)     New Development Bank

c)     Special Drawing Rights (SDR)

a)     Vladimir Kazbekov (the Vice-President of the NDB of the BRICS grouping) has welcomed the inclusion of the Chinese yuan in the IMF basket of reserve currencies, as it would benefit the five emerging economies.

b)     The IMF had announced on Nov 30 that starting from October 2016, the RMB would be included in its SDR basket.

c)     Analysts say that the stability of the yuan will benefit the BRICS nations. This was because the NDB was considering raising capital in Yuan-denominated bonds as a first step before it entered the bond markets of the rest of the members of BRICS grouping.

d)     He said the exchange rate of RMB is keeping relatively stable among the currencies of BRICS countries and is widely used in world trade and investment. NDB is considering issuing the first local bond denominated in RMB in Chinas domestic inter-bank market in the first half of next year.

e)    The NDB has an authorised capital of 100 billion dollars, and a 50-billion-dollar initial subscribed capital, which is equally shared among the founding members. Its lending will focus on infrastructure development and sustainable projects in the emerging economies and Global South.

11.

Bid to restore Channapatna craft to its original glory (Page 8)

a)     National

b)     Geography

a)     Channapatna craft

b)     Geographical Indication (GI)

a)   The traditional wooden toy-and-doll craft, with perfected lacquer-ware of Channapatna (on the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway), may be protected by a GI tag but today a crisis stares the industry in the face.

b)    The Channapatna handcraft can be traced to the reign of Tipu Sultan who invited artisans from Persia to train local artisans in the making of the wooden toys.

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