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Home » THE HINDU, PIB CURRENT NEWS ANALYSIS 16 APRIL 2018

THE HINDU, PIB CURRENT NEWS ANALYSIS 16 APRIL 2018

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: 16-04-2018

 

National News

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

E-tailers may have to clarify if they profiteered from GST cut

Details:

  • The National Anti-Profiteering Authority in GST will soon reach out to e-commerce companies seeking responses on whether they profiteered from sale of good after reduction in the Goods and Services Tax rates, said a top official.
  • If, after investigation, it is found that the e-commerce companies profiteered from the reduction in GST, they will be asked to identify buyers and refund the tax amount to them.
  • In case, they are unable to identify the buyers, they will have to deposit the amount in the Consumer Welfare Fund.
  • The NAA, whose formation was approved by the Cabinet on November 16 – a day after the government announced sharp reduction in the GST rates on a large number of items of mass consumption, is mandated to ensure that the benefits of the reduction in GST rates on goods or services are passed on to the consumers by way of a reduction in prices.
  • The authority had so far received about 250 complaints from consumers via its website.
  • Majority of complaints are against firms in real estate and the FMCG sector.
  • The complaints include selling goods at an MRP that did not reflect the revised GST rates or the benefits of input tax credit received by a business not being passed on to the end consumer.
  • NAA has now partnered with community social network LocalCircles to reach out to the people as part of their awareness campaign on the issue.

Source-The Hindu

General Studies-III : Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber security; money-laundering and its prevention 

PMLA will need more changes

Details:

  • India will have to make money laundering an explicitly standalone offence to upgrade its compliance ahead of the on-site mutual evaluation by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), which is due in November-December 2020.
  • Among the key recommendations of the FATF, an international body that sets global standards for fighting illicit finance, is that money laundering be made a standalone offence.
  • Despite several amendments, the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) remains a predicate-offence-oriented law.
  • This means a case under the Act depends on the fate of cases pursued by primary agencies such as the CBI, the Income Tax Department or the police.
  • The latest instances are the verdicts in the 2G spectrum and Aircel-Maxis cases by the CBI courts, in which the money laundering angle probed by the Enforcement Directorate fell apart.

Source-The Hindu

International News:

General Studies-II : Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India's interests Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India's interests, Indian diaspora.

 

U.S., Britain, France rain over 100 missiles on Syria

  • U.S., British and French forces struck Syria with more than 100 missiles on Saturday in the first coordinated Western strikes against the Damascus government, targeting what they called chemical weapons sites in retaliation for a suspected poison gas attack.
  • The bombing represents a major escalation in the West’s confrontation with Mr. Assad’s superpower ally Russia, but is unlikely to alter the course of a multi-sided war which has killed at least half-a-million people in the past seven years.
  • That, in turn, raises the question of where Western countries go from here, after a volley of strikes denounced by Damascus and Moscow as reckless and pointless.

War for war

  • By launching a missile attack on Syria, U.S. President Donald Trump has made good on his threat to use force if chemical weapons are used in the civil war-stricken country, but he has also escalated the devastating, multi-sided conflict.
  • This is the second time Mr. Trump has ordered a missile attack on Syria. Last year, after a chemical attack in Idlib province, the U.S. fired 59 cruise missiles at an airbase of President Bashar al-Assad.
  • This time, after a suspected chemical attack in Douma near Damascus, the U.K. and France joined hands with the U.S. to punish Mr. Assad’s regime.
  • On Friday night, over 100 missiles targeted three regime facilities; with this, the Pentagon said, Syria’s chemical weapons programme has been gutted.
  • While the use of chemical agents against civilians cannot and must not go unpunished, the manner in which the U.S. and its allies have acted raises serious questions.
  • The U.S. undertook the strike before the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons even began its investigation in Douma to ascertain if chemical weapons had in fact been used.
  • It should have waited till the inter-governmental watchdog completed its investigation and then presented the case for action in the UN Security Council with requisite evidence.
  • By acting merely on the basis of inputs from their intelligence agencies, the U.S.-led alliance flouted international law.
  • It is also doubtful if Mr. Trump’s “mission accomplished” bravado is justified.
  • The fact that a provocation was perceived for a second strike within a year suggests that the first one failed to deter the Assad regime.
  • On the other hand, Mr. Trump has dragged the U.S. deeper into the Syrian civil war. If there is a future chemical attack, either by Mr. Assad or by his rivals, the U.S. will be forced to act again, perhaps more harshly.
  • Worryingly, every time the U.S. bombs Syria, the chances of a military confrontation in the country between the U.S. and Russia heightens, given that Moscow remains firmly behind Mr. Assad.
  • What Syrians need is not more bombs and missiles, but an end to the war, which has killed at least 400,000 people in seven years.
  • There is no dispute that Mr. Assad is presiding over a monstrous military machine that has used brute force against his own people.
  • But the ground reality in Syria is so complex that a sudden collapse of the regime would push the country and the millions who live in relative stability in regime-held territories into further misery.
  • That is the last thing anyone wants. The focus of the West needs to shift from unilateral military action to aggressive multilateral diplomacy to find an immediate end to violence and then a long-lasting political solution.
  • For that, the U.S. and Russia have to work together under a UN mandate. There is no other path to peace in Syria.

Source-The Hindu

 

 

 

General Studies-II : Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India's interests Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India's interests, Indian diaspora.

 

Despite Mosul massacre, Iraq still a draw for Punjab’s jobless

Details:

  • Despite the deaths of Indian workers in Iraq, thousands of men in Punjab still hope to find a job in the war-torn land- and mostly through illegal channels.
  • Of the 39 labourers who went to Iraq and were killed by suspected ISIS militants in Mosul, 27 were from Punjab.
  • Travel agents here said people still plan to go to places such as Iraq for jobs and better wages, despite the risks that such troubled regions pose.
  • Many travel without valid papers, they said, calling for strict enforcement of a licensing system to check the mushrooming of illegal travel agents in Punjab.
  • The main reason people go to other countries is unemployment in Punjab
  • There are no specific figures on the number of travel agents helping people go to Iraq illegally, but experts in the industry said there could be thousands of such unlawful operators.
  • The salaries of workers in Iraq were two or three times higher than those in places such as Dubai.
  • Many international companies required labour for infrastructure projects being built or rebuilt in the war-ravaged country.
  • The Punjab police, which has sometimes been accused of colluding with the illegal agents, has now been taking tough action against them.

Source-The Hindu

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IMPORTANT QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS FOR UPSC EXAM 2018

1. Which of the following statements are true with respect to National Anti-profiteering Authority (NAA)?

 

1.It is empowered to crack down on firms that fail to pass on the ‘benefits’ of the GST tax regime to consumers.

2.The authority can order businesses to reduce product prices or refund the undue benefits earned back to customer.

 

a. Only 2

b. Only 1

c. Both 1 and 2

d. None of the above

 

Answer-c

 

 

2.Which one of the following countries of South-West Asia does not open out to

the Mediterranean Sea?

 

a.Syria

b.Jordan

c. Lebanon

d. Israel

 

Answer-b

 

3.Which of the following statements are true with regard to the  Financial Action Task Force (FATF)?

 

1. The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is an inter-governmental body

2. FATF sets standards and promotes effective implementation of legal, regulatory and operational measures for combating money laundering

a. Only 1

b. Only 1 and 2

c. Only 2

d.Neither 1 nor 2

 

Answer-b

 

4. Which of the following statements are true with regard to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons(OPCW)?

1.It is an intergovernmental organisation, headquatered in Hague, Netherlands....

2.The organisation promotes, administers and verifies the adherence to the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and...

 

 

a. Only 1

b. Only 1 and 2

c. Only 2

d.Neither 1 nor 2

 

Answer-c

 

5.Which of the following countries do not border Iraq?

a.Kuwait

b.Saudi Arabia

c.Yemen

d.Iran

 

Answer-c