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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 Examination

                                             News Analysis:  5-12-2017

National News:

General Studies-II : Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.

15th Finance Commission to get inputs from stakeholders

The Fifteenth Finance Commission held its first meeting on Monday, where it held preliminary discussions regarding its terms of reference, and agreed that it would expedite meetings with the government and the various stakeholders in order to meet those terms.

Description: Image result for Finance commission

Functions of Finance Commission:

  • The Finance Commission is required to make recommendations to the president of India on the following matters:
  • The distribution of the net proceeds of taxes to be shared between the Centre and the states, and the allocation between the states of the respective shares of such proceeds.
  • The principles that should govern the grants-in-aid to the states by the Centre (i.e., out of the consolidated fund of India).
  • The measures needed to augment the consolidated fund of a state to supplement the resources of the panchayats and the municipalities in the state on the basis of the recommendations made by the state finance commission.
  • Any other matter referred to it by the president in the interests of sound finance.

Source- The Hindu

General Studies-III : Indian Economy -development and employment.

Centre prepares to redefine ‘employment’

For the past three and half years, the NDA government has had a battle on its hands when it came to providing an enabling ecosystem for adequate job creation.

The government’s own data showed that job creation in the formal sector was slowest in almost a decade

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The changes envisaged include:

  • According to the draft report, there is no fixed definition of formal workers currently in India.
  • All the economic activity in India, including in the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) and informal sectors, will soon get properly captured.
  • Change in the definition of employment/workers as well as ways to include and measure employment in the informal sector as well
  • All definitions were highly restrictive, and exclude many workers who have decent and steady jobs but either do not work in large enough enterprises or do not have written contracts.
  • The plan now is to include workers covered the Employees’ State Insurance Act, 1948 (or other similar insurance), Employees’ Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provision Act, 1952 (or other similar social security scheme), workers having coverage under private insurance or pension schemes or provident funds as well as workers subject to tax deduction at source
  • The panel had identified the Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency (MUDRA) scheme, which provides small, unsecured loans to enterprises, as an important source of job creation.

Source- The Hindu

General Studies-III : Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation

NGT raps CPCB over flawed report

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Monday came down heavily on the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) for filing flawed inspection reports of paper units in Uttar Pradesh.

 It is surprising that the biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) and chemical oxygen demand are below detectable limits.

Biochemical oxygen demand:

Biochemical oxygen demand (BOD, also called biological oxygen demand) is the amount of dissolved oxygen needed (i.e., demanded) by aerobic biological organisms to break down organic material present in a given water sample at certain temperature over a specific time period.

Chemical oxygen demand

Chemical oxygen demand (COD) is a measure of the capacity of water to consume oxygen during the decomposition of organic matter and the oxidation of inorganic chemicals.

Source- The Hindu

International News:

General Studies-II : Indian diaspora

Yemen’s ex-President Saleh killed

Former President Ali Abdullah Saleh has been killed in fighting with the Iran-aligned Houthi militia raging in the Yemeni capital Sanaa, Saudi-owned Al Arabiya television said on Monday.

Forgotten war — on Saudi-Yemen crisis

For the past 33 months, Saudi Arabia has been bombing Yemen with help from its Western allies.


  • The Saudis say they are fighting Houthi rebels on behalf of the “legitimate” government of Yemen
  • Saudi Arabia was wary of the rising influence of the Shia Houthis, who it sees as Iran-sponsored militia.

Consequences of the war:

  • Severe famine and increasingly dependent on external aid for food and medicine.
  • The country is fighting a massive cholera outbreak.
  • The breakdown of government services
  • Lack of drinking water and a crumbling health sector,
  • Yemen is fast turning Yemen into a failed state and a breeding ground for extremist groups such as al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula

Way Forward:

  • All warring parties, including the Houthis, the Saleh faction, fighters loyal to President Hadi and Saudi Arabia should move towards talks.
  • The international community has largely looked away. .Allies should put pressure on Riyadh to cease the bombing, and set the stage for talks between the factions.

Source- The Hindu

General Studies-II : India and its neighborhood- relations

FTA with China purely commercial, says Maldives

Enhanced trade relations with China will not affect Maldives’s relations with its neighbours, said visiting Ministers here on Monday, defending a recent Free Trade Agreement with the giant.

India, known to be watching China’s increasing presence in the region with concern, is yet to comment on the development

General Studies-II : India and its neighborhood- relations

China opens CPEC to other nations

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China has thrown open its economic corridor with Pakistan for investment by other countries after successfully commissioning a power plant near Karachi.

China-Pakistan Economic Corridor is a whopping 46 billion dollar project which will connect Kashgar in Xinjiang province of China, with Gwadar port in Baluchistan which is the largest province in Pakistan. It is connected through a vast and complex network of roads as well as other infrastructure projects such as dams, hydropower projects, railways, and pipelines.

General Studies-II : Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

General Studies-III : Conservation

ISA to become a Treaty-based International Intergovernmental organization tomorrow

46 countries sign and 19 ratify the Framework Agreement of ISA

Signatory Countries (46)

Australia, Bangladesh. Benin, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Chile, Costa Rica, Democratic Republic of Congo, Comoros, Cote d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, Equatorial Guiana, Fiji, France, Gabonese Republic, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, India, Kiribati, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritius, Nauru, Niger, Nigeria, Peru, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Tonga, Togolese Republic, Tuvalu, UAE, Vanuatu, and Venezuela

Ratifying Countries (19)

India, France, Australia, Bangladesh, Comoros, Cuba, Fiji, Guinea, Ghana, Malawi, Mali, Mauritius, Nauru, Niger, Peru, Seychelles, Somalia, South Sudan, and Tuvalu

Description: Image result for international solar alliance


What is ISA?

  • The International Solar Alliance is an alliance of more than 120 countries, most of them being sunshine countries, which come either completely or partly between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn.
  • The primary objective is to collectively work for efficient exploitation of solar energy to reduce dependence on fossil based fuels.
  • This initiative was proposed by our Prime Minister of India first during his speech at Wembley Stadium, London.
  • This initiative was launched at the India Africa Summit and a meeting was held among them before the conclave of 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris on November 2015.
  • This is a treaty-based inter-governmental organization. The alliance will take the shape of an international treaty once its rules are worked out.
  • The Headquarters is in India with its Interim Secretariat being setup in Gurgaon.
  • The agreement will become operational after at least 15 countries have ratified it.
  • The framework agreement says that the members of ISA would take coordinated actions through programmes and activities that will aggregate the demands for solar finance, solar technologies, innovation, research and development, and capacity building.
  • The ISA aims to develop cost-efficient solar technologies and applications.
  • It is also expected to mobilise $1 trillion for funding solar energy projects by 2030.

Source -PIB

Other issues in News

Another Kolkata school under abuse cloud

The ongoing agitation over alleged sexual abuse of a kindergarten student at G.D. Birla Centre for Education spread on Monday as guardians of students of another private school on the southern fringes of the city staged a protest.

Source- The Hindu

Bail-in doubts — on financial resolution legislation

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has wisely sought to allay fears about a “bail-in” clause in the Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill, 2017.

Source- The Hindu

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