GS2: Polity

  • Parliamentary scrutiny on the back burner(TH) However, ground was broken in 1993 when 17 Committees (later increased to 24) of Parliament, the Departmentally-related Standing Committees (DRSCs), drawing members from both Houses roughly in proportion to the strength of the political parties in the Houses, were set up.

GS2: Governance

  • Now, groundwater NOC must for apartments, industries(IE) The Centre has notified new guidelines to regulate extraction of groundwater, making it mandatory for new and existing industries, group housing societies, and private water supply tankers to get a no objection certificate (NOC) for withdrawal of groundwater. Non-compliance of NOC conditions may attract a penalty between Rs 50,000 and Rs 10 lakh.

GS2: Social issues

  • We need a 5-yr, 10-yr plan to get labour participation rate right(IE)For India’s demographic dividend to play out, we don’t have much headroom amongst men, because 75% of them are anyway participating. The headroom is all among women, which is down to 10-11%. Female labour participation even in urban India is extremely low, in fact lower than in rural India.

GS2: International Relations

  • Quad discusses Indo­ Pacific(TH) Both countries’ statements say the officials committed support to the concept of ASEAN-centrality in the Indo-Pacific and ASEAN’s leadership in the architecture of the region.
  • Bilateral Maritime Exercise Between Japan and India (JIMEX 20) to Commence off West Coast of India The 4th edition of India - Japan Maritime bilateral exercise JIMEX, which is conducted biennially between the Indian Navy and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) will be held in North Arabian Sea from 26 to 28 September 2020. JIMEX series of exercises commenced in January 2012 with special focus on maritime security cooperation. The last edition of JIMEX was conducted in October 2018 off Visakhapatnam, India.

GS3: Economy

  • Vodafone wins $2 bn tax case(TH) An international arbitration tribunal in The Hague ruled that India’s imposition of a tax liability on Vodafone, as well as interest and penalties, were in a breach of an investment treaty agreement between India and the Netherlands, two sources with direct knowledge of the matter said.
  • Retrospective Taxation:theVodafone case,and theHague court ruling(IE) In May 2007, Vodafone had bought a 67% stake in Hutchison Whampoa for $11 billion. This included the mobile telephony business and other assets of Hutchison in India. In September that year, the India government for the first time raised a demand of Rs 7,990 crore in capital gains and withholding tax from Vodafone, saying the company should have deducted the tax at source before making a payment to Hutchison.
  • Code debate(TH) The root of the idea of consolidated labour codes goes back to the June 2002 report of the Second National Commission on Labour.
  • IRDAI lists LIC, GIC, New India as systemically important(TH) D-SIIs are perceived as insurers that are too big or too important to fail. Such a perception and the expectation of government support may amplify risk taking, reduce market discipline, create competitive distortions and increase the possibility of distress in future. Thus, D-SIIs should be subjected to additional regulatory measures to deal with the systemic risks and moral hazard issues, IRDAI said.

GS3: Infrastructure

GS3: Agriculture related issues

  • Harvest of Distrust(IE) Out of 36 states and union territories, 18 states have already enacted reforms allowing for establishment of private market yards/private markets, 19 states have enacted reforms allowing for direct purchase of agricultural produce from agriculturists by processor/bulk buyer/bulk retailer/exporter, 20 states have enacted contract farming acts.

GS3: Science and Tech
New finding on Blazars—the brightest jets in the universe could provide clues to processes close to black holes Blazars are one of the most luminous and energetic objects in the universe powered by material falling onto a super-massive black hole at the center of the host galaxy – the luminosity being because of their a jet composed of ionized matter traveling at nearly the speed of light towards an observer (the Earth).