Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 10 DECEMBER 2018

SSC CGL Current Affairs

Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 10 December 2018

::NATIONAL::

Centre amends citizenship rules for minorities

  •  The contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, is pending in Parliament, but the Union Home Ministry has notified amendments to the Citizenship Rules, 2009, to include a separate column in the citizenship form for applicants belonging to six minority communities from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.
  •  Under the amendments, a separate entry in the form will ask the applicant: “Do you belong to one of the minority communities from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan — Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Parsis, Sikhs and Christians?” The Centre has made the changes under Section 18 of the Citizenship Act, 1955. New rules were notified on December 3.
  •  A parliamentary committee has been examining the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, that proposes citizenship to six persecuted minorities — Hindus, Jains, Sikhs, Parsis, Christians and Buddhists — from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh, who came to India before 2014.
  •  Around 40 lakh people in Assam have been excluded from the final draft of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) published on July 30. Last month, the Home Ministry re-notified rules empowering 44 Collectors in seven States, except Assam, to accept online applications from those belonging to the six communities from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.

::ECONOMY::

Former CEA calls for expert investigation into new GDP calculation method

  •  Amid raging controversy over the revised economic growth numbers, Former Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian has called for an investigation by experts to clear doubts and build confidence while noting that the “puzzle” about the data needs to be explained.
  •  He stressed that institutions that do not have technical expertise in calculating the GDP data should not be involved in the process, apparently referring to the NITI Aayog.
  •  Dr. Subramanian, who criticiseddemonetisation in his book titled ‘Of counsel: the challenges of the Modi-Jaitley Economy,’ was, however, evasive when asked if he was consulted in the decision-making process on note ban. “As an economist, I think there are some puzzles (new back series GDP data), there are some issues that need to be explained. Since there are things that need to be explained, we should create confidence and eliminate any uncertainty or doubts, have experts who can investigate this thoroughly and give their answers,” Dr. Subramanian said.
  •  On the controversy over the NITI Aayog’s presence at the release of the GDP back series data by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) last month, he said that experts should have producing and explaining data as the main job.
  •  Recalibrating data of past years using 2011-12 as the base year instead of 2004-05, the CSO lowered the country’s economic growth rate during the previous Congress-led UPA’s regime.
  • SEBI relaxes listing norms for start ups
  •  In a major push to kickstart listing of start-ups in India in a big way, capital markets regulator Sebi has lined up a slew of relaxations for new-age ventures.
  •  The proposed changes include renaming the Institutional Trading Platform that the regulator had created for such listings as Innovators Growth Platform. The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) had set up an expert group in June this year to review the start-up platform.
  •  The Group held extensive consultations with other stakeholders including start-ups, investors, bankers and wealth management firms and submitted its report to Sebi on the proposed changes.

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::INTERNATIONAL::

Flight attendants protest against sexual abuse within aircraft

  •  Immaculate-looking flight attendants who appear unruffled by the demands of a life spent in the air are part of the slick image sold by carriers — but Hong Kong-based workers are increasingly hitting back against sexual harassment.
  •  Female cabin crew reveal how they had been harassed by not only passengers but also other airline staff.While they say carriers have made some steps in the right direction, they argue airlines still lag far behind in the #MeToo era.
  •  The complaints from attendants across the globe come as demands for change grow worldwide.The US-based Association of Flight Attendants last year called on American airlines to “renounce the past objectification of flight attendants”.
  •  Vietnamese budget carrier VietJet, which has staffed some of its inaugural flights with bikini-clad attendants and publishes a calendar featuring scantily-dressed models posing on planes, has sparked criticism for its marketing ploys.
  •  A Cathay attendant who did not want to be identified said her in-flight manager had been reluctant to warn a passenger who had patted her head and back repeatedly, which she described as “humiliating”.
  •  Cathay Pacific said it provided training to all staff on the “prevention and elimination of discrimination and harassment in the workplace”.
  •  But attendant Michelle Choi said the company needed to take immediate action, from giving warnings to asking passengers to apologise, or in some cases reporting to police.

::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::

Experts claim bioplastics not an alternative to plastic

  •  Bioplastics — often promoted as a climate-friendly alternative to petroleum-based plastics — may lead to an increase in greenhouse gas emissions, according to a study.
  •  An increased consumption of bioplastics in the following years is likely to generate increased greenhouse gas emissions from cropland expansion on a global scale.
  •  Plastics are usually made from petroleum, with the associated impacts in terms of fossil fuel depletion but also climate change.
  •  Bioplastics, on the other hand, are in principle climate-neutral since they are based on renewable raw materials such as maize, wheat and sugarcane. These plants get the CO2 that they need from the air through their leaves, researchers said.
  •  Producing bioplastics therefore consumes CO2, which compensates for the amount that is later released at end-of-life. Overall, their net greenhouse gas balance is assumed to be zero.
  •  Bioplastics are thus often consumed as an environmentally friendly alternative. However, at least with the current level of technology, this issue is probably not as clear as often assumed, researchers said.
  •  Experience with biofuels has shown that this effect is not a theoretical speculation. The increasing demand for the “green” energy sources has brought massive deforestation to some countries across the tropics, researchers said.

::SPORTS::

Khelo India youth games to be held in Maharashtra

  •  Khelo India Youth Games-2019 will be held in Pune of Maharashtra from the 9th to 20th of January. Addressing a press conference in New Delhi today, Sports Minister Col RajyavardhanRathore said, nine thousand youth will participate in this edition of the game.
  •  Last year around 3500 school children had participated in the event. He said, in this edition of Khelo India Youth Games university players will also take part.
  •  Col Rathore said, his Ministry is trying to develop a sports system that connects local talents to global podiums. He said, the government will also involve private organisations to supplement its efforts to groom the talents in various disciplines.
  •  The Minister said, under Khelo India programme, the government is providing scholarships to 1500 students from across the country.

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