Home Daily Updates IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 18- OCTOBER - 2016
IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 18- OCTOBER - 2016
Tuesday, 18 October 2016 06:51

 

 

 


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DAILY NEWS UPDATES

18- OCTOBER - 2016

 

:: NATIONAL ::

8TH BRICS SUMMIT ENDED WITH THE PLEDGE AGAINST TERRORISM

  • The 8th BRICS summit ended with the adoption of the Goa Declaration which pledged opposition to terrorism, even as India failed to get a consensus on references to Pakistan-based terror groups in the final statement.
  • However, in a strongly worded statement, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “the most serious direct threat to our economic prosperity is terrorism. Tragically, its mother-ship is a country in India’s neighbourhood.”
  • The text of the declaration did not name any country specifically as the source of cross-border terrorism but officials maintained that India did get the diplomatic edge it wanted from the summit.
  • Introducing the Goa Declaration, Prime Minister Modi said, “We also agreed that those who nurture, shelter, support and sponsor such forces of violence and terror are as much a threat to us as the terrorists themselves.”

PM MODI MADE STINGING ATTACK ON PAKISTAN

  • In a stinging attack on Pakistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said the country “embraced and radiated” the darkness of terrorism which had become its “favourite child” and pitched for decisive action.
  • He pressed the member-nations of BRICS and BIMSTEC groupings to send a clear message to those who “nurture the philosophy of terror to mend their ways or be isolated in the civilised world.”
  • His comments came as he pushed for greater collaboration among BRICS countries, as well as members of the BIMSTECgrouping, on issues such as terrorism, economy, trade as well as connectivity.
  • Among the BIMSTEC leaders present were Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Sri Lankan President and Nepalese Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Myanmarese leader Aung San Suu Kyi and Bhutanese Prime Minister TseringTobgay.
  • Mr. Modi underlined that geographical barriers and borders posed no limitations on those who wished to harm societies.
  • While slamming Pakistan, Mr. Modi said, “Terrorism has become its favourite child. And, the child in turn has come to define the fundamental character and nature of its parent.”
  • Appealing to the leaders of BRICS and BIMSTEC, Mr. Modi said everyone present should send a “clear message” to those who nurture the philosophy of terror and seek to de-humanise the mankind, “to mend their ways or be isolated in the civilised world.”
  • Mr. Modi said that with 1.5 billion people and a combined GDP of $ 2. 5 trillion, the countries of BIMSTEC had shared aspirations for growth, development, commerce and technology.
  • Similarly, BRICS represents large emerging economies, G-20 member-states and 2 permanent members of the U.N. Security Council.

STANDING COMMITTEE TO CONSULT SENIOR JURISTS FOR JUDICIAL APPOINTMENTS

  • With no end in sight to the tug of war between the judiciary and the Union government on MoP for judicial appointments, the Standing Committee has scheduled a series of interactions with jurists for their views on a way forward.
  • A decision to hold consultations with jurists like senior advocate and a former Solicitor-General Mohan Parasaran and Indira Jaisingh was taken at the meeting of the panel under the chairmanship of Anand Sharma here on October 13.
  • Originally, the interactions were slated for October 23, but now they have been rescheduled for October 25 as some of the senior jurists were not available that day.
  • A member of the panel, who does not want to be quoted on record,said “Our last session was entirely focused on the huge vacancies to the posts of judges in the High Courts and the Supreme Court.
  • The Law Secretary who was present at the meeting was asked by the Chairman as well as some of the members on the differences between the Central government and the Chief Justice of India on the MoP.

:: INTERNATIONAL ::

BANGLADESH-CHINA RELATIONSHIP UPGRADED TO STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP

  • Developments like government-to-government deals worth $24.45 billion and private investment worth $13.6 billion, during Chinese President’s milestone visit to Dhaka upgraded the Bangladesh-China relationship to a ‘strategic partnership’.
  • However, it has also prompted a debate here on a possible tilt in balance vis a vis Dhaka’s relations with New Delhi, which is all time high under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina .
  • Dhaka has categorically said Mr. Xi’s visit would not have any negative impact on its relations with other countries, including India.
  • The ruling Awami League feels Bangladesh needs both China and India to take forward its aspirations for economic development. The party’s General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam emphasised on the balance in the country’s foreign policy.
  • Bangladesh must be careful and maintain a balance among the powerhouses and players in the region so that none feel aggrieved.

:: BUSINESS AND ECONOMY ::

BRICS AGREE TO SETUP INDEPENDENT RATING AGENCY

  • The five-nation group BRICS agreed to set up an independent rating agency based on market-oriented principles, saying it would further strengthen the global governance architecture.
  • “We believe that BRICS institution-building is critical to our shared vision of transforming the global financial architecture to one based on the principles of fairness and equity,” the declaration stated.
  • To further bridge the gap in the global financial architecture, we agreed to fast-track the setting up of a BRICS Rating Agency,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a statement at the conclusion of the BRICS Summit.
  • Batting for a rating agency backed by BRICS, New Development Bank president K.V. Kamath had expressed concerns over methodologies of the three global agencies (S&P, Fitch, Moody’s) saying that these constrain growth in emerging nations.
  • He had said that ratings of multilateral banks like the BRICS-promoted NDB were affected by the parent countries’ ratings, despite having deep capital buffers.

NITI AAYOG CALLED FOR AN OVERHAUL OF INDIA'S STEEL POLICY

  • NITI Aayog member V.K.Saraswat wants India's steel policy framed in 2012 to be overhauled. As old policy is unlikely to meet the target of 300 million tonnes by 2025.
  • Though India is third largest steel producer, still cheap imports from China, Russia, Korea and Japan has dented domestic industry's fortune.
  • Indian steel sector grew heavily with a rate over 9 percent during 2003-04 and 2007-08. Since then there has been a fall in steel production to 4.7 percent in 2013-14.
  • Though India’ steel production cost is about $320-$340 per tonne compared to $400 in China and global average of $390, it is uncompetitive in global market due to other costs like freight costs, high iron ore royalties etc.

CENTRE RETHINKS 40% NPS ANNUITY ORDER

  • To make the National Pension System (NPS) more attractive, the government could do away with a norm mandating retiring employees to buy an annuity with 40 per cent of their accumulated corpus.
  • Returns on annuity products that deliver a monthly income to retirees are quite low and the compulsory annuitisation puts off potential investors who may prefer to park their retirement savings elsewhere for better returns.
  • For premature withdrawals from the NPS before the age of 60, eighty per cent of the amount must be invested in an annuity product.
  • At retirement, 40 per cent of savings must be invested in an annuity, although the PFRDA has allowed retirees to defer the purchase for three years, if the financial markets are in a downturn when they turn 60.
  • The intent is to ensure people get a monthly income in their sunset years instead of frittering away their entire nest-egg on large expenses at retirement.
  • Scrapping the annuity requirement altogether would need a change in the PFRDA Act which stipulates an annuity purchase at retirement, but it is possible to reduce the proportion of corpus to be annuitised from the 40 per cent prescribed now.
  • So the PFRDA has proposed a reduction in the mandatory annuity norm, giving people the option to invest in other products that could offer higher returns, Mr. Contractor said. The Finance Ministry is considering the proposal.
  • Diluting the annuity prescription would spur greater competition between the 12-year old NPS, which is managing Rs.1.45 lakh crore savings for 3.8 million members, and the EPFO which has Rs.10 lakh crore under its watch.
  • It may be recalled that the Centre had to backtrack on a Budget proposal this year, intended to bring parity between the two retirement savings alternatives by making 60 per cent of EPF corpus taxable, after widespread furore and an intervention at the highest level.
  • While he had rolled back the tax on EPF savings, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley made 40 per cent of the NPS corpus tax-free in this Budget. Earlier, the entire NPS corpus was taxable.
  • Govt had granted an additional annual deduction of Rs.50,000 from gross taxable income for NPS investments over and above the Rs.1.5 lakh deduction permitted for similar investments such as life insurance premia, public provident fund and EPF.
  • The PFRDA chief said the additional deduction triggered a surge in new NPS accounts, most of which were opened towards the end of the previous financial year.

:: IMPORTANT DETAILED NEWS ::

BVR MOHAN REDDY APPOINTED AS HONORARY CONSUL OF GERMANY IN HYDERABAD

BVR Mohan Reddy, Founder and Executive Chairman of Cyient Ltd, was appointed as the Honorary Consul of Germany in Hyderabad. His appointment was announced by German Ambassador to India Martin Ney.

As a Honorary Consul, Mohan Reddy will work towards further strengthening the collaboration between the two nations; promoting culture, industry and commerce, facilitating investments, educational exchange and enhancing goodwill.

The office of the Honorary Consul will also provide limited consular assistance in the state of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana and support the German citizens within the two states.

Reddy was Chairman of the National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) for the year 2015-16.

IGIA'S T3 BECOMES FIRST PLATINUM RATED GREEN AIRPORT TERMINAL BUILDING IN INDIA

Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) announced that the Terminal 3 of Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) achieved Platinum rating from Indian Green Building Council (IGBC).

The plaque and certificate for the achievement was handed over by IGBC to Douglas Webster, COO-DIAL and Roy Sebastian, VP- Project and Engineering, during the 14th Green Building Congress, 2016 organized by IGBC in Mumbai.

With this, the state-of-the-art Terminal 3 of IGIA has become the first Platinum rated green terminal building under Green Existing Building O&M Rating System by IGBC. This is another significant environmental achievement by IGIA, after being accredited as the first Carbon Neutral airport in Asia Pacific recently by Airports Council International (ACI).

About Indian Green Building Council

The Indian Green Building Council, part of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), was formed in 2001.

The vision of the council is to enable a sustainable built environment for all and facilitate India to be one of the global leaders in the sustainable built environment by 2025.

The council offers a wide array of services, which include developing new green building rating programmes, certification services and green building training programmes.

The council also organises Green Building Congress, its annual flagship event on green buildings.

The council is committee-based, member-driven and consensus-focused.

COLOMBIAN PRESIDENT JUAN MANUEL SANTOS WINS 2016 NOBEL PEACE PRIZE

The 2016 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded toColombian President Juan Manuel Santos for his resolute efforts to bring the country's more than 50-year-long civil war to an end, a war that took away the lives of at least 220000 Colombians and displaced nearly six million people.

The civil war in Colombia is one of the longest civil wars in modern times and the sole remaining armed conflict in the Americas.

President Juan Manuel Santos's role in Columbian War

• President Santos initiated the negotiations that culminated in the peace accord between the Colombian government and the FARC guerrillas as he consistently sought to move the peace process forward.

• The accord was controversial, however he was instrumental in ensuring that Colombian voters were able to voice their opinion concerning the peace accord in a referendum.

• The outcome of the vote was not what President Santos wanted as a narrow majority of the over 13 million Colombians voted against the accord.

• Despite the "No" majority vote in the referendum, President Santos brought the bloody conflict significantly closer to a peaceful solution.

• His endeavours to promote peace thus fulfil the criteria and spirit of prize.

INDIA TO HOST ASIAN MINISTERIAL CONFERENCE ON DISASTER RISK REDUCTION

India will host the Asian Ministerial Conference for Disaster Risk Reduction (AMCDRR).

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the conference that will be held in New Delhi in collaboration with the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR).

The Conference will focus on partnership with governments and stakeholders to imbibe the practices in the region’s development narrative.

It will be the first AMCDRR after the introduction of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (SFDRRR), adopted at the third UN World Conference in Sendai, Japan in March 2015. It will set the direction of Sendai Framework implementation in the region.

Key highlights of the conference

The conference aims at transforming the commitments of governments and stakeholders during the Sendai Conference into national and local action.

The meet will focus on collaboration, consultation and partnership with governments and stakeholders to mainstream DRR in the region’s development narrative.

The conference will adopt the Asian Regional Plan for Implementation of the Sendai Framework endorsed by the Asian countries.

It will also consolidate the political commitment of governments towards preventing and reducing risk as well as strengthening resilience in the form of a political declaration.

Previous Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction

First AMCDRR was held in China in 2005.

Second AMCDRR was held in India in 2007.

Third AMCDRR was held in Malaysia in 2008.

Fourth AMCDRR was held in Republic of Korea in 2010.

Fifth Asia Ministerial conference was held in Indonesia in 2012.

INDIAN-ORIGIN BARRISTER SHAMI CHAKRABARTI APPOINTED TO UK SHADOW CABINET

Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the Labour Party and Leader of the Opposition, appointed Indian-origin barrister Shami Chakrabarti to the UK’s shadow cabinet.

Baroness Chakrabarti’s appointment as a member of the Lords was met with criticism from prominent Jews and Labour MPs.

Corbyn also handed a major promotion to his long-time ally Diane Abbott, making her shadow home secretary.

Other appointees include Sir Keir Starmer, who has been invited back as shadow Brexit secretary.

Who is Shami Chakrabarti?

Sharmishta "Shami" Chakrabarti is a member of the British House of Lords and a British Labour Party politician.

She was the Director of Liberty from 2003 to 2016.

When she was the director of Liberty, she campaigned against excessive anti-terror legislation.

She studied Law at the London School of Economics.

After graduating, she was called to the Bar and then worked as an in-house legal counsel for the Home Office.

The Times described her as probably the most effective public affairs lobbyist of the past 20 years.

In April 2016, she was invited by Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn to chair an inquiry into anti-semitism in the Labour Party.

In August 2016, she was nominated by Corbyn to receive a life peerage in the Prime Minister's Resignation Honours.

About Shadow Cabinet

The Shadow Cabinet is a feature of the Westminster system of government.

It consists of a senior group of opposition spokespeople who, under the leadership of the Leader of the Opposition, form an alternative cabinet to that of the government.

Members of a shadow cabinet are often but not always appointed to a Cabinet post if and when their party gets into government.

It is the Shadow Cabinet's responsibility to criticise the policies and actions of the government, as well as offering an alternative program.

 

 

 

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 October 2016 04:08
 
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