9 PM Current Affairs Brief – 20th December, 2017


Download the compilation of all summaries of all the news articles here


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Seeing through a glass darkly: on combating terrorism

Seeing through a glass darkly: on combating terrorism Context Terrorism Different type of attacks Recent attacks in Europe and parts of Asia, from 2015 to 2017 — beginning with the attack on the Charlie Hebdo offices in Paris in January 2015 The major incidents at Brussels and Istanbul Ataturk airports as well as the Bastille Day … Continue reading “Seeing through a glass darkly: on combating terrorism”

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Centre examining health effects of e-cigarettes: Nadda 

Centre examining health effects of e-cigarettes: Nadda  Context The government is examining the legal implications and health effects of e-cigarettes, Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda told the RajyaSabha on Tuesday Groups constituted by government Health Ministry had constituted three groups to study the various aspects of e-cigarettes One was to study the legal implications of … Continue reading “Centre examining health effects of e-cigarettes: Nadda “

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Ensure level-playing field for the disabled in higher educational institutions: SC

Ensure level-playing field for the disabled in higher educational institutions: SC Context Higher educational institutions, both government ones and those who take government aid, should ensure a level-playing field for disabled persons or face action for discrimination, the  Supreme Court warned Appropriate statute The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act provides for not less than … Continue reading “Ensure level-playing field for the disabled in higher educational institutions: SC”

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Govt. defends special courts for politicians 

Govt. defends special courts for politicians  Context Finance Minister ArunJaitley on Tuesday defended the government’s decision to set up fast track courts for dealing with criminal cases against politicians and said lawmakers should take the lead in setting an example. Opposition to SC directive Earlier, Opposition parties, led by the Congress and the Samajwadi Party, raised … Continue reading “Govt. defends special courts for politicians “

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LS passes 2 bills to repeal 245 old laws

LS passes 2 bills to repeal 245 old laws Context                                                                                   The LokSabha   on Tuesday passed two Bills to  repeal 245 obsolete and archaic laws, including the 158-year-old  Calcutta Pilots Act of 1859 and the 1911 Prevention of Seditious Meeting Act. A Progressive Move The old and many irrelevant pre-independence laws were the “unfortunate part … Continue reading “LS passes 2 bills to repeal 245 old laws”

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Parliament gives nod to IIM bill 

Parliament gives nod to IIM bill  Context Parliament on Tuesday unanimously passed a Bill to grant the Indian Institutes of Management the power to grant degrees instead of post-graduate diplomas. The Bill features As per the IIM Bill, 2017, a Board of Governors will appoint the Director of each IIM. The Bill also allows students … Continue reading “Parliament gives nod to IIM bill “

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Privacy in cyberspace 

Privacy in cyberspace  Context Protecting individual rights should be at the core of data protection legislation Report of the Data Protection Committee When the government set up the committee on Data Protection in India, led by Justice B.N. Srikrishna, it said that the objective “is to ensure growth of the digital economy while keeping personal … Continue reading “Privacy in cyberspace “

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In Fact: Why it is time for New Delhi to make Nepal feel ‘India-open’ 

In Fact: Why it is time for New Delhi to make Nepal feel ‘India-open’  Context Nepal’s political leadership has often felt that India uses blockades of essential supplies to discipline the smaller country. With the China-leaning Left Alliance winning Nepal’s elections, India will have to work extra hard to repair the trust deficit. The History 2002: … Continue reading “In Fact: Why it is time for New Delhi to make Nepal feel ‘India-open’ “

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India a leading global power, Pakistan needs to show it can be responsible for its nukes

India a leading global power, Pakistan needs to show it can be responsible for its nukes Context Almost a year in office and after two bilateral meetings between Prime MinisterNarendraModi and US President Donald Trump, the US government on Tuesday marked out India’s emergence as a “global power” in its first National Security Strategy — a … Continue reading “India a leading global power, Pakistan needs to show it can be responsible for its nukes”

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U.S. partnership vital in Asia-Pacific: India 

U.S. partnership vital in Asia-Pacific: India  Context The Indo-U.S. partnership helps maintain stability in the Asia-Pacific region, the External Affairs Ministry said here on Tuesday, hours after President Donald Trump announced the new National Security Strategy of the U.S. and described India as a “leading global player”. Backdrop The response came even as both sides … Continue reading “U.S. partnership vital in Asia-Pacific: India “

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Centre wants GST on fuel: ArunJaitley 

Centre wants GST on fuel: ArunJaitley  Context The Centre favours including petroleum products within the ambit of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), but it would want a consensus among the States before taking such a step, Union Finance Minister ArunJaitley told the RajyaSabha on Tuesday. Finance Minister, however, says a consensus from the States … Continue reading “Centre wants GST on fuel: ArunJaitley “

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Transit gambit: on e-way bill mechanism for transport of goods 

Transit gambit: on e-way bill mechanism for transport of goods  Context The Centre needs to do more to ease the shift to e-way bills for transport of goods The Centre needs to do more to ease the shift to e-way bills for transport of goods Already grappling with the Goods and Services Tax transition, businesses are … Continue reading “Transit gambit: on e-way bill mechanism for transport of goods “

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UIDAI tightens norms for Aadhaar-bank account linking 

UIDAI tightens norms for Aadhaar-bank account linking  Context Following the  Airetel India- Aadhaar subsidy fiasco,the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) on Tuesday has tightened the norms for mapping Aadhaar number to a different bank account. According to the latest rules, ‘explicitly informed consent’ from customers has been made compulsory The National Payments Corporation of … Continue reading “UIDAI tightens norms for Aadhaar-bank account linking “

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Reveal, recognise, resolve 

Reveal, recognise, resolve  Context Gap between global banks and Indian banks on bad loan recovery is set to narrow 5 theories There are five theories for why Indian banks recover so little of their bad loans The first suggests something cultural about repayment intentions of Indian borrowers The second theory suggests that many big bank … Continue reading “Reveal, recognise, resolve “

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NitiAayog to set up Methanol Economy Fund 

NitiAayog to set up Methanol Economy Fund  Context NitiAayog plans to set up a Methanol Economy Fund worth Rs 4,000-5,000 crore to promote production and use of the clean fuel. The government think is aiming at generation of the fuel by converting high ash content coal into methanol and such a plant is expected to be … Continue reading “NitiAayog to set up Methanol Economy Fund “

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‘Centre planning strategy to boost services exports’ 

‘Centre planning strategy to boost services exports’  Context The government is formulating a new strategy to boost services exports by identifying new markets such as Latin America as well as services, including healthcare and financial services, which have tremendous potential in terms of exports and job creation, according to Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu. Backdrop The … Continue reading “‘Centre planning strategy to boost services exports’ “

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Amendments to Companies Act passed; to ease compliance 

Amendments to Companies Act passed; to ease compliance  Context A bill to amend the companies law to strengthen corporate governance standards, initiate strict action against defaulting companies, and help improve the ease of doing business in the country, was passed by Parliament on Tuesday New law will ensure better corporate governance: Minister The RajyaSabha passed … Continue reading “Amendments to Companies Act passed; to ease compliance “

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Need to bolster WTO process’ 

Need to bolster WTO process’  Context The World Trade Organisation (WTO) process needs to be strengthened and taken forward as India has a strategic interest in the functioning of the multilateral trade system, according to Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu. Backdrop Briefing members of Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry in a closed-door meeting … Continue reading “Need to bolster WTO process’ “

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Northeast policy to aid trade with ASEAN’ 

Northeast policy to aid trade with ASEAN’  Context The new Industrial Policy being framed for the development of industries in the northeast would prove catalytic to the trade with southeast Asian nations, according to the government. Govt. to work on improving FDI inflow The department-related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Commerce, in its report on trade … Continue reading “Northeast policy to aid trade with ASEAN’ “

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CAG picks flaws in Centre’s accounting 

CAG picks flaws in Centre’s accounting  Context The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) has highlighted several flaws in the Union government’s accounting procedures for the financial year 2015-16, which could have led to an understatement of the fiscal deficit and revenue deficit for that year FRBM audit shows FY16 fiscal deficit possibly understated … Continue reading “CAG picks flaws in Centre’s accounting “

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