Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 04 APRIL 2019
AG claims bringing collegium under RTI would undermine judicial
- Opening up the “highly-sensitive” correspondence of the
Supreme Court’s collegium and its workings to the Right to Information (RTI)
regime would make judges and the government “shy” and “destroy” judicial
independence, Attorney General K.K. Venugopal submitted on Wednesday.
- Addressing a Constitution Bench, led by Chief Justice of India
RanjanGogoi, Mr.Venugopal asserted that were the RTI Act to be applied
to the collegium, its member judges would not be able to sit back and
have a free and frank discussion for fear that their confidential views
may later come into the public domain.
- The Supreme Court, after losing legal battles before the
Central Information Commission (CIC) and the Delhi High Court, finally
had to appeal to itself to protect the collegium’s workings.
- Elaborating on some of the reasons to exclude the collegium
from the purview of the RTI, Mr.Venugopal said: “If reasons for his
rejection come into public domain, will a judge be able to function
independently? The entire future of the judge is ruined.
Study finds air pollution reduces life span by 3 months
- The current high level of air pollution has shortened the
average lifespan of a South Asian child by two-and-a- half years while
globally the reduction stands at 20 months, according to a global study
released on Wednesday.
- State of Global Air 2019, published by Health Effects
Institute (HEI), said exposure to outdoor and indoor air pollution
contributed to over 1.2 million deaths in India in 2017. The report
added that worldwide, air pollution was responsible for more deaths than
many better-known risk factors such as malnutrition, alcohol abuse and
- In India, air pollution is the third highest cause of death
among all health risks, ranking just above smoking; each year, more
people globally die from air pollution-related diseases than from road
traffic injuries or malaria.
NITI Aayog wants new regulation to deal with bad loans
- With the Supreme Court quashing the Reserve Bank of India
(RBI) circular on loan defaults, the central bank and the government
will now have to sit together and bring a new regulation to ensure
financial discipline among borrowers, said NITI Aayog Chief Executive
Officer Amitabh Kant.
- On Tuesday, the apex court struck down a February 2018
circular issued by the RBI that gave lender banks six months to resolve
their stressed assets or move under the Insolvency Code against private
entities who have defaulted in loans worth over Rs. 2,000 crore.
- Earlier in the day, while delivering the keynote address at
the event, Mr. Kant said that the Indian economy must grow rapidly at
9-10% even as the country faced four main challenges — manufacturing
with a focus on exports, gender parity, agriculture, and transforming
areas that have remained backward.
ADB moots 7.2% growth this fiscal
- Asian Development Bank, ADB, says India's growth is set to
pick up. In its report released today, ADB said India is expected to
grow at 7.2 per cent in the current fiscal on strengthening consumption.
- According to the Asian Development Outlook 2019, India's
growth slowed from 7.2 per cent in fiscal 2017 to 7 per cent in 2018,
with weaker agricultural output and consumption growth curtailed by
higher global oil prices and lower government expenditure.
- It is expected to rebound to 7.2 per cent in 2019 and 7.3 per
cent in 2020 as policy rates are cut and farmers receive income support,
bolstering domestic demand.
- The report added that sub-region wise, southeast Asia will
sustain growth at close to 5 per cent this year and the next one.
China blocks U.S parallel way to designate Azhar as global terrorist
- China on Wednesday raised its pitch against Washington’s
parallel initiative to designate MasoodAzhar as a global terrorist,
insisting that its diplomacy within the 1267 committee of the Security
Council was yielding “positive results”.
- In response to a question on Washington’s attempt to designate
Azhar as an international terrorist through a separate resolution,
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said that most
countries within the Council were not supporting the U.S.’s move.
- He stressed that Washington’s parallel initiative was needless
as Beijing was making progress to build consensus to list Azhar as a
global terrorist within the 1267 committee itself.
- The Associated Press reported that a draft resolution
circulated to Security Council members on March 27 by the U.S. would
impose a travel ban and asset freeze on him.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::
High levels of coral bleaching found in Australian coast
- The world’s southernmost coral reef has been hit by bleaching
this summer, Australian scientists said on Wednesday, as they warned
rising sea temperatures from climate change were affecting even the most
- The corals off Lord Howe Islandsome 600 km offshore from
Sydney were affected by elevated temperatures this summer, despite
escaping severe bleaching that damaged the Great Barrier Reef in 2016
- “It’s just another indicator that climate change is affecting
everywhere around the world. Here is a reef that is 600 km from the
mainland and we are seeing bleaching there in a lovely, beautiful
ecosystem,” he said.
- Mr.Leggat and other scientists from several Australian
universities and the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration found severe bleaching of up to 90% at Lord Howe’s
inshore, shallow lagoon reefs. Deeper-water corals in the marine park,
which contains species not found anywhere else and like the Barrier Reef
is a World Heritage site, were still “looking quite healthy” having
mostly escaped the bleaching, Mr.Leggat said.
Indian women footballers win over Indonesia in Olympic qualifiers
- In Football, the Indian women's national team today registered
a 2-0 win over Indonesia in its opening match of the Olympic Qualifiers
Round two in Mandalay, Myanmar.
- With this win, India went a step closer to making it to the
2020 Tokyo Games.
- Maintaining the winning momentum after the success of their
fifth consecutive SAFF title triumph, the Indian women applied pressure
on the opponents from the opening minute.
- India will face Nepal in the second match of the group stage
on Saturday. A win will be necessary there too, because only the group
topper gets to progress to the third round of the Olympic Qualifiers.