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News Analysis: 1-12-2017

National News:

General Studies-I : Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc

Storm wreaks havoc in south T.N., Kerala

Cyclonic storm Ockhi has hit several parts of TN,kerala since Thursday morning, wreaking widespread havoc and bringing normal life to a halt.

How are cyclones named?

  • The World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) started the tropical cyclone naming system in 2000.
  • The Cyclones worldwide are named by 9 regions — North Atlantic, Eastern North Pacific, Central North Pacific, Western North Pacific, North Indian Ocean, South West Indian Ocean, Australian, Southern Pacific, South Atlantic.
  • Cyclones in the North Indian Ocean basin are named by the Indian Meteorological Department
  • Eight north Indian Ocean countries Bangladesh, India, the Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Thailand, gave eight names each which was combined into a list of 64 names. One name from each country is picked in an order to name the cyclones.

Why are they named?

Tropical cyclones are named to provide ease of communication between forecasters and the general public regarding forecasts, watches, and warnings.

The name Ockhi was given by Bangladesh which in Bengali means 'eye'

Source: The Hindu


General Studies-II :Issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure

Tripura BJP demands President’s Rule

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday demanded imposition of President’s Rule in Tripura alleging that the law and order situation had collapsed in the poll-bound State.

President’s Rule:

  • According to Article 356 of our constitution, President’s rule can be imposed in a state if a situation has arisen in which the government of the state cannot be carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.
  • Article 365 says that where any State has failed to comply with, or to give effect to, any directions given in the exercise of the executive power of the Union under any of the provisions of this Constitution

 The Supreme Court in its landmark S.R.Bommai judgment (1994) laid down clear standards for imposition of president’s rule. The governor was to carry out a floor test to determine the legitimacy of a state government, rather than rely on subjective judgment of his own. A state government’s existence could no longer be upturned at the whim of the central government.

Source: The Hindu


General Studies-II : Issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure

Executive power rests with us, says Centre

  • The Centre completed its arguments in the spat over the administrative governance of the National Capital on Thursday while underlining that the executive power rested completely with it.
  • The Delhi government had argued that the Lieutenant Governor was not a “Viceroy” but simply an agent of the President whose powers depended on the pleasure of the President.

Special provisions for Delhi:

  • The 69th Amendment Act, 1992 has added two new Art. 239AA and Art. 239AB under which the Union Territory of Delhi has been given a special status.
  • Art. 239AA provides that the Union Territory of Delhi shall now be called the National Capital Territory of Delhi and its administrator shall be known as Lt. Governor.
  • It also creates a legislative assembly for Delhi which can make laws on the state list and concurrent list except on these matters: public order, land and police.
  • It also provides for a Council of Ministers for Delhi consisting of not more than 10% of the total number of members in the assembly.
  • The President shall make appointments to the Council of Ministers including the Chief Minister.

Source: The Hindu


General Studies-II : Pressure Groups

‘Mamata trying to finish Gorkhaland movement

Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) leader Bimal Gurung on Thursday claimed in the Supreme Court that West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee was trying to break his party to finish the movement for a separate Gorkhaland.

What is the Gorkhaland Issue?

  • The demand of Darjeeling as a separate administrative region dates back to 1907. But, the term “Gorkhaland” was coined recently, in the 1980s, by Subhash Ghising, the founder of Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF).
  • Gorkhaland consists of Nepali-speaking people of Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Kurseong and other hilly districts of West-Bengal. The people belonging to these areas have ethical, cultural and language differences with the Bengali community of West-Bengal.
  • The Gorkhaland Movement is a movement mainly focused in the Darjeeling Hills of West Bengal, which demands the creation of a separate state of Gorkhaland.
  • The area covers Duars and Terai region of West Bengal. And is famous for its tea and beauty, which are the main sources of its income.

Why is there a demand for separate statehood for Gorkhaland?

  • The immediate trigger for the agitation was the imposition of Bengali in the school curriculum by West Bengal Government.
  • The main reason for the separate Gorkhaland movement is due to the differences in ethnicity, culture and language.
  • The people of Nepali-Indian Gorkha ethnic origin on the Northern part of West Bengal demands a state on basis of their cultural identity, which is very different from Bengali culture.
  • In addition to an identity crisis, there is also an issue of poverty, under-development and politicisation of the issue.
  • A failure of governance of the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) combined with politicisation that bred the Gorkhaland issue.


Source: The Hindu


General Studies-III : Conservation

U.K.-based NRIs pledge ₹500 crore for Ganga

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari has kicked off an international road trip to draw investment and technology sharing into the government’s Clean Ganga Mission in London this week.



National Mission for Clean Ganga:

  • Focus On pollution abatement interventions namely Interception, diversion & treatment of wastewater flowing through the open drains through bio-remediation / appropriate in-situ treatment
  • Beautification of Ghats.
  • It integrates the efforts to clean and protect the Ganga river in a comprehensive manner
  • To involve people living on the banks of the river to attain sustainable results
  • To involve the States and grassroots level institutions such as Urban Local Bodies and Panchayati Raj Institutions in implementation

Source: The Hindu


General Studies-III : Indian Economy-Growth and development

GDP shrugs off GST as Q2 growth rebounds to 6.3%

  • Shrugging off the impact of demonetisation and the Goods and Services Tax (GST), the economy seems to be on the rebound.
  • GDP grew 6.3 per cent in the July-September quarter, with robust expansion in manufacturing, electricity production and trade and hotels sectors.
  • The core sector industries growing by 4.7 per cent in October, unchanged from the previous month, supported by strong growth of refinery products and steel output.


  • The Centre’s financial health remains under pressure: the fiscal deficit rose to ₹5,25,321 crore between April and October, or 96.1 per cent of the Budget Estimate as receipts lagged expenditure.
  • The revenue deficit overshot the full-year target by 24.7 per cent to ₹ 4,01,085 crore between April and October. The Centre hopes to maintain its fiscal deficit at 3.2 per cent of GDP.

Source: The HinduBusinessline


General Studies-III : Indian Economy-Growth and development

Cement, steel, refinery drag down core sector growth to 4.7% in Oct.

  • The eight core industries constitute 40.27% of weight of items in the index of industrial production (IIP).
  • Eight core sectors grew at a slower pace of 4.7% in October, chiefly due to subdued performance of cement, steel and refinery segments.

The eight infrastructure sectors — coal, crude oil, natural gas, refinery products, fertilisers, steel, cement and electricity — had clocked a growth of 7.1% in October last year.

Source: The Hindu


General Studies-II : Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

General Studies-III : Indian Economy-Growth and development

Centre to review trade policy on Dec. 5

Details :

  • The Centre is set to announce on December 5 its mid-term review of the Foreign Trade Policy (FTP)
  • The spotlight of the review is likely to be on Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) and labour-intensive segments, according to official sources.
  • The move comes at a time when latest trade data show that goods exports shrank by 1.12% in October to $23 billion, the weakest performance since the 6.86% contraction in July 2016
  • The fall was expected as exporters, particularly SMEs, were facing liquidity problem to pay GST for four months in a row without getting any refund

Foreign Trade Policy(2015-2020):

  • The policy seeks to make India a bigger player in global trade by doubling the overseas sales to $900 billion by 2019-20, while integrating the foreign trade with “Make in India” and “Digital India Programme”.
  • The new FTP sought to consolidate all previous export incentive schemes under two: Merchandise Exports From India Scheme (MEIS) and Services Exports From India Scheme (SEIS).
  • The Merchandise Exports From India Scheme has replaced five existing schemes: Focus Products Scheme, Market-linked Focus Products Scheme, Focus Market Scheme, Agriculture Infrastrucutre Incentive Scrips and Vishesh Krishi Grameen Udyog Yojana (VKGUY).
  • Services Exports From India Scheme has replaced the existing Served From India Scheme (SFIS).
  • In a big relief for exporters, all scrips issued under MEIS and SEIS and the goods imported against these scrips will be fully transferable. This means that scrips issued under export from India schemes can now be used for payment of customs duty for import of goods, payment of excise duty on domestic procurement of inputs or goods, and payment of service tax.

Source: The Hindu


International news

General Studies-II : India and its neighborhood- relations.

Doklam is in our area, says China

The Chinese military on Thursday hinted at maintaining sizeable presence of its troops near the area of Doklam standoff during winter, asserting that the region is in Chinese territory.


  • China and India in the past used to withdraw troops from the advanced regions of that area during the winter which is harsh.
  • India had objected to the road building by the PLA, saying that it endangered the security of the narrow corridor.

What is the significance of the Doklam plateau?

  • The valley holds strategic significance for India, China as well as Bhutan. India sees it as a dagger pointed towards its so-called ‘chicken’s neck’ sector in the Northeast and rapid Chinese road construction in Tibet could make things difficult for India. At the same time, Sikkim is one of the few sectors where India has an advantage.
  • In the event of war, India’s Brigade-sized military presence inside Bhutan, stationed at Ha, allows it to attack the Chumbi valley from two sides, potentially cutting off Chinese troops stationed facing Sikkim.



Way ahead:

Diplomatic engagement can open a way, but a solution that allows both sides to ‘save face’ is not immediately visible. The Chinese have ratcheted up rhetoric through official statements and in state-run media.Though undesirable, an escalation of the conflict remains a possibility in the future. However, both the countries have expressed that they will use official diplomatic channels to reach a solution.

Source: The Hindu


General Studies-II : India and its neighborhood- relations.

Mizoram focus of Centre’s Act East policy: Kovind

  • Hailing Mizoram as “special”, President Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday said it is the focus of the Centre’s Act East policy that aims at providing access to new markets for the State.
  • The policy will give Mizoram’s agricultural produce and traditional products entry to such markets, as well as strengthen information technology and Internet connectivity in the State, Mr. Kovind said at a special session of the Assembly. He said this process would have a multiplier effect across a range of industries.
  • Mizoram occupied a strategic place in the Act East Policy, but while it achieved admirably in various human development indices such as literacy rate and sex ratio, infrastructural deficit was acute.

The Objective of ”Act East Policy” is to promote economic cooperation, cultural ties and develop strategic relationship with countries in the Asia-Pacific region through continuous engagement at bilateral, regional and multilateral levels thereby providing enhanced connectivity to the States of North Eastern Region with other countries in our neighbourhood.

The way ahead is to enhance connectivity in all its dimensions — i-ways (information ways), highways, airways, railways and waterways;


Source: The Hindu


Other  issues in news:

AIDS medicine brings positive results for sex workers

  • A preventive medicine for AIDS, ‘Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis’ (PrEP), administered to sex workers in ’s Sonagachi, one of Asia’s largest red light districts, has revealed positive results.
  • Under a pilot project, which has been cleared by the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) and the Union Health Ministry, about 700 sex workers from Sonagachi are being administered the drug since February 2016 in different batches.

Source: The Hindu


NGT seeks reply on pollution by industries

  • The National Green Tribunal has sought comments from various stakeholders on the pollution caused by industrial and mining activity in Singrauli and Sonebhadra districts of Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.
  • The green panel has sought comments on “whether the industries have complied with the directions of the tribunal and recommendations of the committee in discharging of their corporate social responsibility


Legal jurisdiction of NGT:

The NGT has the power to hear all civil cases relating to environmental issues and questions that are linked to the implementation of laws listed in Schedule I of the NGT Act. These include the following:


1. The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974;

2. The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Cess Act, 1977; (yes, cess act)

3. The Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980;

4. The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981; 

5. The Environment (Protection) Act, 1986; (aka EPA)

6. The Public Liability Insurance Act, 1991; (good option to confuse)

7. The Biological Diversity Act, 2002.


Source: The Hindu



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