Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 20 JANUARY 2020

SSC CGL Current Affairs

Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 20 JANUARY 2020

::NATIONAL::

SC forms committee to form draft mediation law

  • The Supreme Court has, through a unique step, set up a panel to firm up a draft legislation to give legal sanctity to disputes settled through mediation, which would then be sent to the government as a suggestion from the apex court.
  • The mediators emphasised on confidentiality, the voluntary nature of the process, neutrality, avoiding conflicts of interest, enforceability of settlement etc.
  • The committee has roped in international experts on mediation, which includes HiroAragaki and Joel Lee, who are experts on alternative dispute resolution (ADR).
  • Experts feel it is a progressive step and just as amending the Arbitration Act 1996 promoted institutional arbitration, an overarching legislation would create legal sanctity and avoid inconsistencies between the various pieces of existing legislation.

Assam accord panel suggests ILP as well as reservations in jobs

  • The committee on Clause 6 of the Assam Accord has in a draft report suggested constitutional safeguards, among other steps, to protect the identity and heritage of the Assamese people, sources in the know said.
  • The panel in its preliminary report is learnt to have suggested the introduction of Inner Line Permit, reservation of seats in the legislative assembly and local bodies, and reservations in employment for the Assamese people.
  • The committee will hold discussions with the attorney general of India before submitting its final report, said a member of the committee, who did not want to be named. “The panel has members from the legal fraternity but it is always better to have a second check,” an associated person said.

::ECONOMY::

Centre moots database of workers in informal sector

  • The government is set to do a count of rickshaw pullers, street-side vendors and hawkers, and other unorganised workforce, in its first effort to create a national database of an estimated 450 million informal sector workers and provide them universal social security coverage.
  • As part of this survey, informal sector workers would be asked about their occupation, monthly incomes and days of employment, and their profiles would be seeded with Aadhaar to deliver the benefits.
  • Nearly 90% of the country’s workforce is in the informal sector with no minimum wages or any kind of social security. The survey is expected to yield crucial employment data on the informal sector, filling a vital gap in India’s statistics.
  • The National Statistical Commission will be roped in to compile data on the size, distribution and economic contribution of these unorganised workers to the national output.
  • The exercise will start soon and take at least a year to complete. It is expected to help create a base for the government to identify genuine beneficiaries to be targeted when it moves towards universal social security.

Government considers fixing NBS rate for Urea

  • The government is likely to fix nutrient-based subsidy (NBS) rate for urea before rolling out the direct cash transfer (DCT) of urea subsidy to farmers’ accounts.
  • The subsidy will not be universal for farmers across the country and will be based on soil health and size of the landholding. Tenant farmers would also be eligible to get the subsidy on production of valid tenancy documents.
  • Fixing NBS rate for urea will encourage balanced use of urea and bring in efficiency in the fertiliser industry by infusing competition. The DCT is aimed at replacing the existing direct benefit transfer (DBT) system where farmers buy urea at subsidised price, which is almost one-third of the total cost, and the urea manufacturers get the subsidy reimbursed after sale to farmers by the retailers.
  • In 2010, the government had launched the NBS under which a fixed amount of subsidy is provided on each grade of subsidised phosphatic and potassic (P&K) fertilisers. Now for urea too, the subsidy will be based on the nutrient content present in them.
  • An official said that the subsidy amount will depend on the size of landholding and soil health and will vary from state to state.

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::INTERNATIONAL::

Pakistan seeks US help to get off from FATF grey list

  • Pakistan is lobbying with the United States to remove it from the grey list of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an intergovernmental organisation that combats terror financing and money laundering, which has impacted the country’s sagging economy.
  • Pakistan foreign minister Shah MehmoodQureshi was in Washington last week and had expressed hope that the US would back its efforts to get it off the grey list at FATF’s review meeting in Beijing this week.
  • “This meeting is very important for us as it leads to a plenary meeting in Paris in April where the world body will decide whether Pakistan remains on the list or is taken off,” Qureshi said at a press meet in Washington on Friday. He also urged the US to review its travel advisories for Pakistan and encourage investment in the country.
  • FATF had in October last year said Pakistan has been unable to deal with terror groups propping up in the country under different banners, with many contesting last year’s general elections as well.

::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::

India test fires K-4 ballistic missile

  • India has successfully test-fired a 3,500 kilometre range nuclear capable missile that can be launched from a submarine. The test of the K-4 ballistic missile was conducted off the Vizag coast in Andhra Pradesh on Sunday.
  • With this test, India has moved one more step towards the induction of this ballistic missile on the INS Arihant class of nuclear submarines. The missile was developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
  • The three-metre-tall missile carries a nuclear warhead of over one tonne with a circular error probability far lower than that of Chinese ballistic missiles. Only the US, Russia and China have submarine-launched ballistic missiles of 3,500-kilometre range.
  • The submarine-launched ballistic missile is the most important part of the air, land and sea nuclear triad and is at the front of India’s second-strike capability.

::SPORTS::

Thailand wins Indonesian masters 2020 title

  • Thailand's RatchanokIntanon lifted the Indonesia Badminton Masters 2020 women's singles title after defeating Carolina Marin in the summit clash on Sunday.
  • Intanon defeated Marin 21-19, 11-21, 21-18 in one hour and twenty minutes long match. The clash went into three-games and both the shuttlers tried their 100 per cent to turn things in their favour.

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