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Daily Current Affairs : 17-Dec-2019

Major Topics Covered :

  1. ARTICLE 6 OF THE PARIS AGREEMENT (CARBON MARKETS)

  2. RIGHT TO PROTEST

  3. RIGHT TO PROTEST II

  4. DELHI DIALOGUE

  5. CROWN ACT

  6. NEFT TRANSACTIONS NOW AVAILABLE (NEFT) 24X7

  7. SEXED SEMEN

  8. MOBILE NUMBER PORTABILITY GOING TO BE FAST, SIMPLE FROM DEC 16

  9. SHANMUGA SUBRAMANIAN

  10. DSC PRIZE FOR SOUTH ASIAN LITERATURE



ARTICLE 6 OF THE PARIS AGREEMENT (CARBON MARKETS)

Part of GS-3 Environment


Why in news?


Negotiators at the Madrid climate talks finally threw up their hands on the contentious issue of setting up a new carbon market under the Paris Agreement.


Highlights:

  • Carbon markets allow the buying and selling of emission reductions in the form of carbon credits, and enable countries struggling to meet their climate targets to buy these credits from countries that are in a position to reduce their emissions beyond their own targets.

  • Such a carbon market existed under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol as well but that regime is coming to an end next year.

  • The current negotiations are about creating a similar market under the successor Paris Agreement regime.

Article 6 of Paris agreement:

  • The provisions relating to setting up a new carbon market are described in Article 6 of the Paris Agreement.

  • These provisions allow for two different approaches of carbon trading.

  • Article 6.2 enables bilateral arrangements for transfer of emissions reductions, while ensuring that they do not double-count the reductions.

  • Article 6.4 talks about a wider carbon market in which reductions can be bought and sold by anyone.

  • Article 6.8 provides for making ‘non-market approaches’ available to countries to achieve targets.

  • They could include any cooperative action, like collaboration on climate policy or common taxation, that are not market-based.

Disagreement:

  • The big disagreement is over the transition of unsold carbon credits from the Kyoto regime to the new market.

  • Countries like India, China and Brazil want their unsold carbon credits to be valid in the new market while the developed countries are opposing it on the ground that many of these credits were bogus and did not represent actual emission reductions.


Source : The Hindu


RIGHT TO PROTEST

Part of GS-2 Polity and Governance


Why in news?


The police action in Delhi's Jamia Millia Islamia, where the police entered the campus and employed force against students, is being widely criticised.


Highlights: IN THE CONSTITUTION


The right to protest peacefully is guaranteed by the Constitution of India.

Articles 19(1)(a) and 19(1)(b) give to all citizens the right to freedom of speech and expression, and to assemble peaceably and without arms.


However, under Articles 19(2) and 19(3), the right to freedom of speech is subject to “reasonable restrictions in the interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States, public order, decency or morality or in relation to contempt of court, defamation or incitement to an offence”.


IN THE CrPC AND IPC


The legal provisions and avenue available to police for handling agitations, protests, and unlawful assemblies are covered by the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), 1973, the Indian Penal Code (IPC), 1860, and The Police Act, 1861.


The CrPC’s Sections 129-132 deal with “Dispersal of assembly by use of civil force”, use of the armed forces in situations of civil unrest, and protection against prosecution for acts done under these sections.


Under CrPC Section 129, “any Executive Magistrate or officer in charge of a police station may command any unlawful assembly, or any assembly of five or more persons likely to cause a disturbance of the public peace, to disperse; and it shall thereupon be the duty of the members of such assembly to disperse accordingly”.


Source: Indian Express


RIGHT TO PROTEST II

Part of GS-2 Polity and Governance


Why in news?


While agreeing to hear petitions on alleged police excesses on students in Jamia Millia Islamia and Aligarh Muslim University, a Supreme Court Bench headed by Chief Justice of India S A Bobde on Monday expressed displeasure over rioting and destruction of public property.


The CJI said the protesters were free to take to the streets, but if they did, they would not be heard by the court.


Highlights:


The Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act, 1984 punishes anyone “who commits mischief by doing any act in respect of any public property” with a jail term of up to five years and a fine or both.


Public property under this Act includes “any building, installation or other property used in connection with the production, distribution or supply of water, light, power or energy; any oil installation; any sewage works; any mine or factory; any means of public transportation or of telecommunications, or any building, installation or other property used in connection therewith”.


Provisions of this law can be coupled with those under the Indian Penal Code.


Supreme Court Guidelines:

  • However, the Supreme Court has on several earlier occasions found the law inadequate, and has attempted to fill the gaps through guidelines.

  • In 2009, in the case of In Re: Destruction of Public & Private Properties v State of AP and Ors, the Supreme Court issued guidelines based on the recommendations of the two expert Committees.

  • In 2007, the court took suomotu cognizance of “various instances where there was large scale destruction of public and private properties in the name of agitations, bandhs, hartals and the like”, and set up two Committees headed by former apex court judge Justice K T Thomas and senior advocate Fali Nariman to suggest changes to the law.

  • The Thomas Committee recommended reversing the burden of proof against protesters. Accepting the suggestion, the court said that the prosecution should be required to prove that public property had been damaged in direct action called by an organisation, and that the accused also participated in such direct action.


Source: Indian Express


DELHI DIALOGUE

Part of GS-2IR


Why in news?

External Affairs Ministry will host the 6th Indian Ocean Dialogue and Delhi Dialogue XI at the Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra in New Delhi on 13th and 14th of December, 2019.


Highlights:

  • For the first time, these two tracks 1.5 dialogues will be held consecutively and on similar Indo-Pacific themes.

  • The Indian Ocean Dialogue will take place on Friday and the theme is "Indo-Pacific: Re-imagining the Indian Ocean through an Expanded Geography”.

  • It is being organized with assistance of Research and Information System for Developing Countries (RIS), a New Delhi–based autonomous policy research institute.


DELHI DIALOGUE


Delhi Dialogue is a premier annual track 1.5 event to discuss politico-security, economic and socio-cultural engagement between India and ASEAN.


It has been held annually since 2009 and political leaders, policy makers, senior officials, diplomats, think tanks and academicians from both sides participate in the discussions pertaining to ASEAN-India relations.


Source: AIR


CROWN ACT

Part of GS- 2 IR


Why in news?

In July this year, California became the first state in the US to make discrimination over natural hair illegal. New York followed suit and now New Jersey has become the latest US state to pass such a legislation, called Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair (CROWN) Act.


Highlights:

  • CROWN aims to protect people of colour from being discriminated against for their natural hair, especially at the workplace.

  • The legislation takes into account discrimination because of traits that are historically associated with a particular race, “based on hair texture and style”.

  • The law separates “professionalism” from features and mannerisms, thereby getting rid of workplace grooming or dress code policies that would deter black people from applying.

  • A study conducted recently by Dove concluded that black women were 80% more likely to change their natural hair in order to meet social norms or expectations at work.

  • Black women are also 50% more likely to be sent home from the workplace because of her hair.


Source: Indian Express


NEFT TRANSACTIONS NOW AVAILABLE (NEFT) 24X7

Part of GS-3 Economy


Why in news?


Starting December 16, the National Electronic Fund Transfer (NEFT) system at any time of the day, all through the year.


Earlier, NEFT transactions could only be carried out between 8 am to 7 pm on weekdays plus first and third Saturday — second and fourth Saturdays, plus Sundays, excluded.


Highlights:


The NEFT system, which was first introduced in the late 1990s as the Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT) system, attained its present avatar in 2005.


Now that NEFT is 24x7, 365 days a year,


It is still from IMPS.


For one, NEFT transactions will only be credited to the beneficiary account in batches, unlike the Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) system, which transfers money in real time.


Secondly, unlike IMPS, for which banks charge a certain amount depending on the quantum of money being transferred, NEFT transactions have been made free by RBI from July 1, earlier this year.


Thirdly, unlike IMPS, which can only be transacted online, a NEFT transaction can be done offline by visiting a bank branch.


Additionally, as per the RBI mandate, there's no limit on the amount of money that may be transferred via NEFT - unlike IMPS, where a maximum of Rs 2 lakh per day can be transferred.


Source: Times of India


SEXED SEMEN

Part of GS-3 S&T


Why in news?

During the recently held 14th Progressive Dairy Farmers Association (PDFA) International Dairy and Agri Expo 2019 at Jagraon, Union Minister for animal husbandry, dairying and fisheries Giriraj Singh had said that the plan is to provide dairy farmers with ‘sexed semen’ for cattle for as cheap as Rs 100 per straw by 2020.


Highlights:

  • Sexed semen is specially processed semen of bulls from which ‘Y’ chromosomes in sperm cells - which lead to the birth of a male calf - are either removed through a ‘sorting’ process or killed.

  • Semen which has only ‘X’ chromosomes can ensure that a female calf is born.

  • The Method: There are two techniques to produce sexed semen: One is the ‘sorting process’ in which ‘X’ and ‘Y’ chromosomes are separated. ‘X’ are retained and ‘Y’ discarded.

  • The other is in which ‘Y’ chromosomes are altogether killed.

  • Both technologies use an instrument called ‘Flow Cytometer.’


Why is this method being used?


Considered a financial burden, male calves are either killed or abandoned on the roads by farmers as they do not give milk. This had led to an increasing number of cattle roaming the streets, which has caused fatal road accidents as well.


Does sexed semen have a 100 per cent success rate?


The guarantee of a female calf being born is never 100 per cent. It can be up to 90 per cent. In 10 per cent cases, a male calf might be born despite using sexed semen because even after sorting/killing, some Y chromosomes may pass.


Source: The Hindu


MOBILE NUMBER PORTABILITY GOING TO BE FAST, SIMPLE FROM DEC 16

Part of GS-3 S&T


Why in news?

The Mobile Number Portability (MNP) process is going to be fast and simple from December 16. Telecom regulator TRAI issued a public notice in this regard, yesterday.


Highlights:

  • Under the new rules, it would take only 3 days to port from one network to another in the same circle while Porting for another circle will be executed within 5 working days.

  • Earlier MNP used to take a week to be completed.

  • As per TRAI, there is no change in the porting timelines for corporate mobile connections.

  • For corporate mobile connections, there is no change in the porting timelines.

  • The revised process comes with conditions for generation of Unique Porting Code (UPC).

  • Mobile users can generate the UPC and avail the mobile number porting process.

  • In new process, the UPC can be generated only when the subscriber is eligible to port-out his/her mobile number.

  • A positive validation of various conditions will determine generation of the UPC.

  • For instance, in case of a post-paid mobile connection, the subscriber has to ensure clearance of outstanding dues towards the existing telecom service provider for the issued bills as per normal billing cycle.

  • Once UPC is generated, it will be valid for four days for all 'Licensed Service Areas (LSAs)' except the circles of Jammu & Kashmir, Assam and North-East, where it will remain valid for 30 days.


Source: AIR


SHANMUGA SUBRAMANIAN

Part of GS-3 S&T


Why in news?

Earlier this month, a 33-year-old techie from Chennai, Shanmuga Subramanian, achieved a rare feat by finding the debris of Indian Space Research Organisation’s Vikram Lander, which was dispatched in Chandrayaan-2.


Highlights:

  • NASA, along with announcing the discovery of the debris, gave credit to Shanmuga Subramanian that his discovery had helped its Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera team locate the site of the primary impact, as well as other debris around the impact location.

  • The Chandrayaan 2 Vikram lander was meant to land on a highland smooth plain about 600 km from the Moon’s south pole.

  • ISRO, however, lost contact with the lander shortly before its scheduled touchdown, on September 7.

  • How he found? Having some idea about the location of the landing, he took a closer look at the particular area in the images with the help of Nasa’s telemetry data.

  • He searched the images for almost 7 to 8 hours daily for around four days.


Source : The Hindu


DSC PRIZE FOR SOUTH ASIAN LITERATURE

Part of GS-Award


Why in news?

Amitabha Bagchi won the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature 2019 for his 2018 novel, Half the Night is Gone.


Highlights:

  • It is awarded annually to fiction from the South Asian region as well as from the diaspora.

  • The award is for novels published in the year preceding the judging of the prize.

  • Instituted in: It was instituted by Surina Narula and Manhad Narula in 2010. Cash award- $25,000.


Source : The Hindu

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