The UPSC Daily
1st & 2nd August 2017
-Achievers IAS Academy
Note: The following Current affairs has been selected from AIR, PIB, PRS,BBC, The Hindu, IDSA (Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses), Live mint, Indian Express, Quora.com,Hindustan Times, Telegraph,The Times ,WTO,New Indian express , The guardian and is highly recommended for UPSC prelims and mains
In news :SC Agrees to Hear Congress Plea Against Use of NOTA in RS Polls
The Supreme Court agreed to hear a plea moved by the Gujarat Congress challenging the decision to use None of the Above (NOTA) option in the upcoming Rajya Sabha polls in the state.
A bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra agreed to hear the plea after senior advocate Kapil Sibal mentioned the matter before it and sought urgent hearing.
Sibal told the apex court that there is no statutory provision with regard to NOTA in the Constitution.
As per government officials, the directions to use NOTA in Rajya Sabha elections were enforced in January 2014 after the Supreme Court in 2013 made it mandatory to have NOTA option in EVMs.
Yesterday, the Congress had approached the Election Commission against the use of NOTA option in the upcoming Rajya Sabha elections, claiming it was violative of the Constitution and electoral laws, but the poll panel maintained that it was not a new direction and was introduced in 2014.
Four candidates are in the fray for three Rajya Sabha seats to which the election will take place on August 8.
Apart from BJP president Amit Shah and Union minister Smriti Irani, the ruling party has decided to field Balwantsinh Rajput against the lone Congress candidate, Ahmed Patel.
In the Rajya Sabha polls, the MLAs have to show their ballot paper to an authorised party agent before putting it in ballot box.
If a voter (MLA) defies the party directive and votes for someone else or uses NOTA option, he cannot be disqualified as a legislator.
But the party is free to take disciplinary action including expulsion. The defiant voter can continue to be an MLA and his vote can also not be invalidated for defying party directions, the EC rules say.
In news :Govt launches portal e-Rashtriya Kisan Agri Mandi
The government launched a portal e-Rashtriya Kisan Agri Mandi (e-RaKAM) which will provide a platform to sell agricultural produce. e-RaKAM is a first of its kind initiative that leverages technology to connect farmers of the smallest villages to the biggest markets of the world through internet.
Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan and Union Minister of Steel Chaudhary Birender Singh jointly launched the portal in New Delhi yesterday.
e-RaKAM is a digital initiative bringing together the farmers, PSUs, civil supplies and buyers on a single platform to ease the selling and buying process of agricultural products.
Under this initiative, e-RaKAM centres are being developed in a phased manner throughout the country to facilitate farmers for online sale of their produce. The farmers will be paid through e-Payment directly into their bank accounts.
In news :Telecom Market likely to cross Rs 6.6 trillion revenue by 2020: Minister
Communications Minister Manoj Sinha has said that Indian Telecom Market is expected to cross the 6.6 trillion rupees revenue mark by the year 2020.
Speaking at a Workshop on Telecom India in New Delhi today, Mr Sinha said, by the end of last year the number of internet subscribers in India was more than 391 million making India globally the 2nd highest in terms of internet users. He said, the Indian telecom industry has seen a paradigm shift from a voice centric market to a data-centric market.
The Minister said, government had launched the Digital India initiative in July 2015 which had three broad targets - providing Digital Infrastructure as a core utility to every citizen, Governance and Services on Demand as well as Digital empowerment of citizens.
In news :US Prez signs Russia sanctions bill into law
Us President Donald Trump has signed into a law a bill which imposes new sanctions on Russia for their alleged meddling in the 2016 election.
The bill, which was signed in private at the White House, also imposes sanctions on Iran and North Korea. The legislation handcuffs the President from easing penalties on Russia without congressional approval. Russia denies interfering in the US election, and Mr Trump has denied colluding with Russia.
The White House had previously indicated that Mr Trump would sign the bill after it had passed through both houses of Congress. But yesterday, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said he and the president are not very happy about the bill.