Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 25 JUNE 2020
Union cabinet approves extension of OBC panel
- The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved a six-month extension to the commission appointed to examine sub-categorisation of Other Backward Classes.
- Headed by retired Delhi High Court Chief Justice G. Rohini, the commission will now have till January 31, 2021, to submit its report, the government said in a statement.
- Union Information and Broadcasting Minister PrakashJavadekar said the Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister NarendraModi, had decided to give the extension. He said the work of the commission was ongoing but had been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The statement said the commission was looking into the issues of communities that were not getting the benefits of reservation.
- “The commission has come to the view that it would require some more time to submit its report since the repetitions, ambiguities, inconsistencies and errors of spelling or transcription, etc. appearing in the existing Central List of OBCs need to be cleared.
CAG report finds around 6500cr as unspent money in labour fund
- Enquiries have revealed that two dozen states had Rs 6,707 crore of unspent money as on March 31, 2019, from a cess collected from employers of construction workers registered with them. The cess was collected by states under two central laws that were enacted in 1996 for the welfare of construction workers.
- States have been spending only a meagre amount of this every year and much of it is still lying with them even as they are looking for funds, including from the Centre, to take care of migrant labours rendered jobless by the lockdown, government sources told on condition of anonymity. Many of the labourers who had returned to their native states since March were engaged in construction projects.
- It's their money, which is collected in the form of cess from people engaged in construction and is supposed to be passed on to the labour boards that states and union territories have constituted, said one of the sources.
- A senior CAG official aware of the ongoing audit said the records of states and UTs were being looked into and that the auditors would provide their observations in the official reports that would be placed before the state legislatures.
- Former senior CAG officer OnkarNath, who had supervised the audit of the construction workers’ cess before he retired last year, said governments in states and UTs had "hardly any concern for construction workers" that migrate to different states in search of jobs.
Centre decides to bring cooperative banks under RBI’s supervision
- To protect depositors, the Centre has decided to bring all urban and multi-State cooperative banks under the supervision of the RBI. The Union Cabinet approved an ordinance to this effect on Wednesday.
- The move to bring these urban and multi-State coop. banks under the supervision of the RBI comes after several instances of fraud and serious financial irregularities, including the major scam at the Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative (PMC) Bank last year. In September, the RBI was forced to supercede the PMC Bank’s board and impose strict restrictions.
- The Cabinet also approved a scheme to provide interest subvention of 2% for a 12-month period to small borrowers with loans up to ₹50,000 under the Shishu category of the PradhanMantri Mudra Yojana. This relief had been announced as part of the Aatmanirbhar Bharat package last month.
IMF releases updated world economic outlook
- Key emerging market economies are taking a severe hit to GDP amid the COVID-19 pandemic, with India seeing the first contraction in decades, the IMF said.
- The updated World Economic Outlook shows India’s GDP will fall 4.5% this year, far worse than expected in April just after the pandemic first took hold outside of China. Mexico will see a double digit decline of 10.5% while Brazil just misses that mark with a drop of 9.1%.
- During the global financial crisis in 2009, these emerging markets, along with China, were booming, supporting the global economy even as advanced nations faced severe recessions. Meanwhile, South Africa’s GDP is seen dropping 8%, while oil-producer Nigeria falls 5.4%, it said.
- Worldwide business shutdowns destroyed hundreds of millions of jobs, and the prospects for recovery — along with the forecasts themselves — are steeped in “pervasive uncertainty” with the virus still rife, the IMF said.
- The U.S. economy is set to contract 8% in 2020, while China fares slightly better, posting growth of 1%, the report said. The IMF cautioned that trade and geopolitical tensions between the world’s largest economies could undercut a modest recovery in 2021.
India expresses concern over instability in Libya
- India has said the continuing conflict and instability in Libya is a matter of international concern.
- In response to media query on recent developments in Libya, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson AnuragSrivastava said New Delhi supports efforts towards immediate cessation of all hostilities in Libya.
- He said, India acknowledges the recent international efforts in this direction, including the Berlin International Conference held on 19th January and the Cairo Declaration of 6th June.
- He said, country hopes that these initiatives will promote the peaceful resolution of the conflict through an intra-Libyan dialogue taking into account the legitimate aspirations of the Libyan people, while preserving Libya’s sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity.
::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::
Union Cabinet approves creation of IN-SPACe
- The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the creation of the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorization Centre (IN-SPACe) to provide a level playing field for private companies to use Indian space infrastructure. This is part of reforms aimed at giving a boost to private sector participation in the entire range of space activities.
- India was among a handful of countries with advanced capabilities in the space sector and these reforms would allow the Indian Space Research Organsiation (ISRO) to focus more on research and development activities, new technologies, exploration missions and human spaceflight programme, the statement said.
- “Some of the planetary exploration missions will also be opened up to private sector through an ‘announcement of opportunity’ mechanism,” it added.
- ISRO Chairman K Sivan had stated that NSIL was incorporated to carry forward the industry production of space systems and the ISRO’s efforts in realising Polar Satellite Launch Vehicles (PSLV) from industry.
ICC board to finalise selection of chairman
- The International Cricket Council (ICC) Board is set to meet on Thursday to finalise the process of electing chairmanShashankManohar’s successor.
- The issue has been on the agenda for the ICC Board since last month but has had to be postponed due to other issues — T20 World Cup fate and breach of confidentiality clause — taking centrestage in the last couple of meetings. As a result, the ICC Board is scheduled to meet on Thursday primarily to finalise the election process.
- Manohar, despite being eligible for another two-year term, has made it clear he will step down after being the first independent ICC chairman. While the pandemic has resulted in his term being extended, all the national Boards are hoping that the election process kicks off at the earliest.