Saturday, 10 December 2016 05:24




RMI'S Current Affairs - https://www.facebook.com/RMIS-Current-Affairs


13- NOVEMBER - 2016




  • Hinting at more action to unearth black money, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said  that those holding unaccounted money would not be spared.
  • He also said there was no “guarantee” that no further steps would be taken after December 30, the deadline for depositing the demonetised currency notes.
  • Mr. Modi assured the honest people that they would not face any trouble. “I would like to announce once again that after the end of this scheme, there is no guarantee that something new will not be introduced to punish you,” he said.
  • Mr. Modi termed the demonetisation a Swachhata Abhiyan and hailed the undaunting spirit of the people, despite the hardship following the November 8 announcement.
  • “I salute my countrymen. I thought long and hard about the possible difficulties, and it was also important to keep it a secret. It had to be done suddenly, but I never thought I would receive blessings for this,” he said.


  • Kerala State Commission for Protection of Child Rights has decided to look into the reasons behind the low conviction under POCSO, 2012.
  • Data provided by the commission on the basis of figures from special courts on cases from November 2012 to December 2015 revealed that only 7 per cent of the 3,711 cases registered under the Act in the State were disposed of.
  • The conviction rate stood at a mere 20 per cent, that is, the accused were convicted in only 53 of the 261 cases disposed of.
  • The number of cases in which compensation was awarded was 23. There were acquittals in as many as 197 cases.
  • Commission chairperson said that the low rates of conviction and disposal of cases were matters of serious concern. The commission said the courts were yet to become child-friendly as per the directions of the POCSO Act.
  • An analysis of 999 cases registered between July and December last year found that 32 per cent of the accused in cases registered under the Act were neighbours of relatives of the children, and 31 per cent teachers.
  • Unknown persons were the accused in 13 per cent of such cases, and van, bus, and autorickshaw drivers 5 per cent.
  • Most of such cases occurred in the house of the children (304) or the accused (185). Public places accounted for 331 such cases. Schools too were not safe, with 33 cases occurring there.
  • Most of the affected children were in the 16-18 age-group (36 per cent). As many as 34 per cent of them were in the 13-15 age group.
  • As many as 50 per cent of the affected children belonged to the OBC category. As much as 16 per cent of them belonged to the Scheduled Castes, and seven per cent to the Scheduled Tribes.
  • Ninety-seven per cent of the accused were men.As many as 593 of them were in the 19-40 age group, and 210 in the 41 to 60 age group. There were 76 accused who were below the age of 18.


  • It is World Pneumonia Day 2016, and India stands pretty much where it stood last year — right on top of the charts with a total of 2,96,279 deaths from pneumonia and diarrhoea.
  • The tally being just short of last year’s figure of 2,97,114 deaths, and the nation desperately needs to reduce those numbers.
  • The Pneumonia and Diarrhoea Progress Report published annually by the International Vaccine Access Center (IVAC), puts India at the top of the list of 15 nations, as it did last year, and the years before.
  • The report, however, does indicate some consolation can be found in the fact that India is among the 12 nations that have improved their Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Pneumonia and Diarrhoea (GAPPD) score this year.
  • The report says: “The rate of all-cause mortality in this age group has been cut by more than half worldwide since 1990, from 91 deaths per 1,000 live births to 43 in 2015.
  • Although this is an enormous achievement, pneumonia and diarrhoea’s contribution to under-5 deaths remains stubbornly high.
  • In 2015, these two diseases together were responsible for nearly one of every four deaths that occurred in children under five.”
  • Nearly 15 years after the introduction of the pneumococcal conjugate vaccines in 2000, five countries among those with the highest pneumonia burden — India, Indonesia, Chad, China and Somalia — are still not using the vaccine in their routine immunisation programmes, the report noted.
  • India recently announced a partial introduction of the vaccine in five states (Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh) from 2017.
  • India introduced rotavirus vaccines in four States in 2015. In addition to thinking of vaccines, the report points out other simple proven interventions in order to prevent these deaths, including antibiotics, exclusive breastfeeding.
  • Also urging nations to go beyond business as usual, it chronicles innovations that help speed up the process and better chase the goal of cutting down the number of preventable child deaths.


  • The Rs. 9,000-crore Ken-Betwa river-interlinking project, which will partly submerge the Panna tiger reserve, may be delayed after a key Environment Ministry body tasked with giving it forest clearance has deferred it at least until January.
  • The project will submerge 6,221 hectares of land— 4,141 hectares of it is core forest inside the reserve. The Forest Advisory Committee’s clearance is required for this diversion of forest land.
  • Depending on whether a project takes over land in wildlife sanctuaries or notified forest land, it requires separate wildlife, forest and environment clearances.
  • The main feature of the project is a 230-km canal and a series of barrages and dams connecting the Ken and the Betwa to irrigate 3.5 lakh hectares in Madhya Pradesh and 14,000 hectares in the Bundelkhand region of Uttar Pradesh.
  • The key components are the Makodia and the Dhaudhan dams, the latter expected to be 77 metres high, which will submerge 5,803 hectares of tiger habitat in the tiger reserve.
  • On the other hand, 6,388 people will be affected as water from the Daudhan reservoir will submerge 10 villages and 13,499 in 28 villages will be affected by submergence caused by the Makodia reservoir.
  • Seventeen lakh residents of nearby towns and villages in both States will benefit from improved drinking water supply and irrigation, the report added.



  • Pushing Vice-President-elect Mike Pence to the foreground of his transition efforts and signalling that some defining components of ‘Obamacare’ will be protected when it is overhauled.
  • Mr. Pence is close to Republicans of all hues, particularly the conservatives. Having spent 13 years in Washington DC as a member of Congress, he is well-networked in the capital and, most important of all, is a friend of House Speaker Paul Ryan.
  • Mr. Pence has replaced New Jersey Governor Chris Christie as the head of the transition team.
  • Extreme positions on issues and personal attacks on President Barack Obama and his opponent Hillary Clinton had fired up the campaign that catapulted Mr. Trump to the most powerful office in the world.
  • But the self-proclaimed deal-maker now says he could consult the Clintons and Mr. Obama, and signals more moderate views on issues.
  • Adding that he would “definitely think about that” consulting both of them, Mr. Trump said: “He’s a very talented guy, both of them… I mean, this is a very talented family.”
  • Mr. Trump has to rework the existing political alignments in DC if he were to push his agenda of scrapping trade deals and investing in infrastructure and defence that will create domestic jobs in America.
  • While congressional conservatives might resist deficit spending by the government, Mr. Trump could find support from progressive Democrats.
  • On other crucial questions, like climate change and nominating a Supreme Court judge, Mr. Trump could align more with his own party while resisting the combined Democratic pressure.
  • Altogether, the political divides as they exist in the national capital will undergo some radical changes as Mr. Trump pushes ahead with his platform and will put to test his deal-making skills.



  • In signing the civil nuclear agreement with India, Japan made a major exception for a non-signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), based on India’s impeccable nuclear record.
  • India, too, may have given exceptional commitments on its nuclear sovereignty and right to conduct nuclear tests in order to bag the deal.
  • Nuclear Cooperation Agreement (NCA) signed in the presence of PM Modi and PM Shinzo Abe followed the template set in the India-U.S. civilian nuclear agreement of 2008, a text signed in addition to it is a departure from the past.
  • In the additional document, called the “Note on Views and Understanding” signed by Indian and Japanese nuclear negotiators after the meeting.
  • Article I (iii) says: “The representative of the Japanese delegation stated that an Indian action in violation of the September 5 statement could be viewed as a serious departure from the prevailing situation.
  • In that situation, reprocessing of nuclear material subject to the Agreement will be suspended in accordance with paragraph 9 of Article 14 of the Agreement,” invoking a section on emergency suspension of nuclear parts or fuel supply.
  • India also understands this, which is confirmed in the official document, “Note on Views and Understanding”, attached to the Treaty,” he said.
  • However, former nuclear envoys say the text signifies India has gone “much further” in commitments to Japan than ever before.
  • In the past, India had rejected direct references to nuclear tests as a trigger for cancelling the deal from the U.S., Canada, and Australia, amongst a dozen countries India has signed nuclear agreements with.
  • Next, India has allowed Japan to include the “emergency suspension” clause, which could mean a major shutdown of its nuclear power capabilities given that Japanese companies and spare parts are expected to be a crucial part of all future reactors in India.
  • With the exception of Russian reactors, all the suppliers in negotiation with India at present: GE, Westinghouse and Areva have considerable ownership by Japanese companies Hitachi, Toshiba and Mitsubishi.
  • Finally, the additional note states that Japan can contest the claims by India for compensation if it suspends its nuclear cooperation with India.
  • The difference in perceptions between the MEA and Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan will be significant, given that the Japanese Parliament, Diet, is yet to approve the Nuclear cooperation Agreement.
  • In India, the debate over nuclear sovereignty will be key.



  • Amid long queues at bank branches to trade in old Rs. 500 and Rs.1,000 notes and as automated teller machines ran out of cash, RBI urged citizens to switch to alternative modes of payment such as pre-paid, mobile banking, and Internet banking.
  • The government had on November 8 cancelled the legal tender status of existing currency notes of Rs.500 and Rs.1,000 denomination and said at the time that such notes could be exchanged at bank branches and post offices till December 30.
  • Following the announcement, ATMs were closed for two days. Each and every ATM in the country (estimated to number more than two lakhs) had to be recalibrated in those 2 days so that they did not dispense any Rs.500 or Rs.1,000 notes.
  • ATMs were only disbursing Rs.100 notes. A few of them, however, were also disbursing Rs.50 notes. A new Rs.2,000 denomination note has been issued but that is only available in bank branches.
  • Further, each ATM needs to be recalibrated so that the new Rs.500 and Rs.1,000 notes, which are of smaller size, can be processed by the cash dispensing machines.
  • RBI admitted that it was a huge responsibility for the banking system to swiftly withdraw those notes in a smooth and non-disruptive way.
  • The central bank maintained that adequate stocks of notes were kept ready in currency chests located at more than 4,000 places across the country.
  • Even as efforts are on for a smoother exchange of currencies, the RBI asserted that a detailed reporting system for banks had been put in place to track the exchange of Rs.500 and Rs.1,000 currency notes.
  • The RBI said it was also closely monitoring the situation to prevent any misuse of the facility.


  • The Centre on November 7 notified the holding of annual survey of industries for 2015-16, which will collect data on assets and liabilities, employment and labour cost, receipts and expenses of companies, among other information.
  • The exercise is expected to be completed by June 2017.
  • While the Annual Survey of Industries (ASI) is a regular feature since 1959, the latest edition which might be released towards the end of next year would feature these new elements.
  • It would be conducted nationwide except the State of Jammu & Kashmir where it will be undertaken under the J&K Collection of Statistics Act, 2010 and J&K Collection of Statistics Rules, 2012.
  • Information is required to be furnished for the Financial Year commencing from April 2015 and ending on March 31 2016 or for the Accounting Year of a unit ending on any date between April 2015 and March 2016.
  • The part one of the 2015-16 survey , would throw light on assets and liabilities, employment and labour cost, receipts, expenses, input items – indigenous and imported, products and by-products, distributive expenses of the registered industries.
  • The second part would focus on different aspects of labour statistics, namely, working days, man-days worked, absenteeism, labour turnover, man-hours worked, earning and social security benefits.
  • The inspectors would have access to business records of a unit, or any other legal document in support of the information furnished by the unit may be inspected by the statistics officer.



The Union Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) launched the Pradhan Mantri YUVA Yojana to boost up an ecosystem of entrepreneurship for young people.

Highlights of the Yojana

• The scheme was launched for the time period of over five years (2016-17 to 2020-21) with a project cost of 499.94 crore rupees.

• It will offer entrepreneurship education and training to around 7 lakh students in 5 years through 3050 Institutes.

• It will also offer easy access to information and mentor network, credit and advocacy to build a way-out for the youngsters.

• The institutes under the Yojana include 2200 Institutes of Higher Learning (colleges, universities, and premier institutes), 300 schools, 500 ITIs and 50 Entrepreneurship Development Centres.

• These institutes will carry out the training through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).

Other Launches

• The Ministry also unveiled  the guidelines for State Engagement under Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana 2.0 (2016-2020). It allocated around  3000 crore rupees for the States to achieve its target of training 10 million people in over 4 years.

• It also launched the Lab Guidelines towards standardisation of lab equipment across skill development training centres in India.

• MSDE announced the institutionalisation of National Entrepreneurship awards for first generation achievers below 30 years for the very first time. The Entrepreneurship Awards will be given on 16 January 2017.


Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Prakash Javadekar inaugurated Smart India Hackathon 2017, world’s largest digital national building initiative.

The Government also unveiled the first set of 250 problem statements that the students will be required to solve during the Hackathon that will take place in early 2017.

Smart India Hackathon 2017 is aimed at reaching out to all technology institutions in India and challenge students to offer innovative solutions to the daunting problems faced by our nation.

All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), University Grants Commission (UGC), i4c, MyGov, NASSCOM, Rambhau Mhalgi Prabodhiniand Persistent Systems will organize the initiative under the aegis of Ministry of Human Resource Development.

Highlights of the Smart India Hackathon 2017

• The Hackathon will have nearly 500 problem statements in all which will be published on innovate.mygov.in.

• It is a pan-India 36-hour nonstop digital programming competition which will take place in more than 20 centres simultaneously.

• Each participating college can nominate up to three teams, each having six team members, which can belong to different courses or semesters within the same college.

• Each team will need to have at least one female team member, to encourage women coders.

• Each team will also have the option of choosing up to two mentors, who can be faculty, alumni or any other expert in their circles.

• Each of the participating 25 ministries and government departments will give away prizes to top three teams, so 75 teams will stand a chance to win cash rewards as well as a chance to work with those ministries and departments for up to six months to execute their winning solution.

• For every ministry and department, the first prize will be of 100000 rupees, second prize of 75000 rupees and third prize of 50000 rupees.

• Some of the ministries and departments participating in the Hackathon include Railways, External Affairs, Defence, Civil Aviation, Indian Space Research Organization, Department of Atomic Energy, etc.

• It will aim to find digital solutions to problems in the areas of power, education, health, water, finance, agriculture, energy, urban & rural development, aviation, transport, sanitation, sports, law & justice, etc.

• It will help institutionalize a model for harnessing the creativity and skills of youth for nation-building.

•It will harness creativity & technical expertise of over 30 lakh students from technology institutes in remotest parts of India to help build a way-out for Startup India, Standup India campaign.

• Students will also win cash prizes from each participating ministry and will get a chance to be part of the NASSCOM’s 10000 Startups Program.


The International Competition Network (ICN) announced that the Competition Commission of India (CCI) would host the 2018 ICN Annual Conference.

The Conference will be held at Delhi in March–April 2018.

By virtue of the event, CCI is also inducted as an ex-officio member of the steering group member of the ICN for a period of 3 years.

About Competition Commission of India

The Competition Commission of India was set-up on 14 October 2003 to prevent practices having adverse effects on competition.

It also aims at promoting and protecting interest of consumers and to ensure freedom of trade carried on by other participants in markets in India.

It became fully functional in May 2009 with Dhanendra Kumar as its first Chairman.

It has been a member of the ICN since 2003.

About International Competition Network

The International Competition Network is an informal, virtual network that seeks to facilitate cooperation between competition law authorities globally.

It was established in 2001 after the publication of a Final Report of the International Competition Policy Advisory Committee to the US Attorney General and Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust.

It comprises 132 members from 120 competition jurisdictions exclusively devoted to international competition enforcement.

It holds an Annual Conference which is hosted by a member competition agency.

The last such Conference was hosted by Competition Commission of Singapore in April 2016. The Portuguese Competition Authority is hosting the next conference in May 2017.


Poland-born art critic Marta Jakimowicz was selected for the Lifetime Achievement Award 2016 by the Karnataka Lalithakala Academy.

Presently, she is settled in Bengaluru. Other than her, portrait artist Baburao V Nadoni from Belagavi, and KK Makali from Bellary were also selected for the award.

All the winners will be honoured with the cash prize of 50000 rupees.

About Marta Jakimowicz

• She began writing art reviews in the 1980s for various publications in Bengaluru.

• Born in Warsaw, Poland, she holds an MA in Indology (Sanskrit, contemporary Indian languages, classical art and cultural studies) from Warsaw University and has also studied Indian art history.

• She initially wrote in Polish on traditional Indian culture, mythology and art and took up Sanskrit translations into English.

• She also wrote the Metamorphoses of Indian Gods.

• In the last 15 years, she has arranged  a number of art exhibitions for galleries in Bengaluru, Delhi and Bombay.

While, Baburao V Nadoni from Belagavi is a national award-winner in portrait art  and has also held several senior positions in various government art institutions.

On the other hand, KK Makali, born in Bagalkot district, has designed hundreds of Kannada book covers of the university publications. He has also been the judge in important art showcases in Mysuru and Hampi.


Guy Ryder was re-elected as the Director-General (DG) of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) for another five-year term. He will assume the post the on 1 October 2017.

Ryder obtained 54 of the 56 votes cast by the titular members. He was the only candidate for the post.

About Guy Ryder

Guy Ryder is the 10th Director-General of the International Labour Organization.

From 2006 to 2010, he served as the General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC).

From 2002 to 2006, he served as the General Secretary of the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU).

About International Labour Organization

The International Labour Organization is a United Nations agency dealing with labour issues.

It has 187 member states.

In 1969, the organization received the Nobel Peace Prize for improving peace among classes, pursuing decent work and justice for workers, and providing technical assistance to other developing nations.

The ILO registers complaints against entities that are violating international rules; however, it does not impose sanctions on governments.


China launched a pulsar test satellite XPNAV-1 from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China. The satellite was carried by a Long March-11 rocket.

It was the 239th flight mission by a Long March carrier rocket.

The satellite and the rocket were designed by academies affiliated with the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp.

Highlights of the pulsar test satellite XPNAV-1

• This X-ray pulsar navigation satellite weighs more than 200 kilogrammes.

• It operates in a Sun-synchronous orbit and will conduct in-orbit experiments using pulsar detectors to demonstrate new technologies.

• While in orbit, the satellite will undergo tests on its detector functions and space environment adaptability.

• The periodic X-ray signals emitted from pulsars will be used to determine the location of a spacecraft in deep space.

• The X-ray pulsar navigation will help reduce the spacecraft’s reliance on ground-based navigation methods and is expected to lead to autonomous spacecraft navigation in the future.




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Last Updated on Saturday, 10 December 2016 10:30