Current Affairs for NDA, CDS, AFCAT, Airforce X&Y Groups – News
Analysis from THE HINDU (January 26, 2019)
1. SC upholds bankruptcy code, cites improved financial flows
In a whoop of victory for credits markets and
entrepreneurship, the Supreme Court on Friday upheld the constitutionality of
the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), saying the law sends a clear message
that India is no longer “the defaulter’s paradise.”
“The defaulter’s paradise is lost. In its place, the
economy’s rightful position has been regained,” a Bench of Justices Rohinton
Nariman and Navin Sinha gave the IBC the thumbs-up in their 150-page judgment.
The Code consolidates disparate bankruptcy and insolvency laws of the past
under one umbrella.
“We are happy to note that in the working of the Code, the
flow of financial resource to the commercial sector in India has increased
exponentially as a result of financial debts being repaid,” the judgment observed.
It said the liquidation value of 63 of the 80 cases resolved
through the acceptance of resolution plans was ?29,788.07 crore. But the amount
realised from the resolution process was ?60,000 crore, that is, 202% higher
than the liquidation value.
2. Bharat Ratna for Pranab, Deshmukh, Hazarika
President Ramnath Kovind on Friday conferred the Bharat
Ratna, the nation’s highest civilian honour, on former President Pranab
Mukherjee, along with social activist Nanaji Deshmukh (posthumous), and Assamese
musician Bhupen Hazarika (posthumous).
3. Aqua Line inaugurated; services start today
Union Minister Hardeep Puri and Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi
Adityanath inaugurated the Noida-Greater Noida metro line on Friday. Passenger
operations on the roughly 30-km-long corridor will start at 10 a.m. on
4. ESI gains 1.8 crore subscribers, EPF adds 73.5 lakh
The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) added 73.5
lakh subscribers between September 2017 and November 2018, according to
government data released on Friday.
The EPFO is a retirement fund for employees in the formal
sector. All firms employing more than 20 workers are required to subscribe to
The Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) gained
more than 1.8 crore new subscribers over the same 15-month period. The ESI
insurance scheme is applicable to firms with more than 10 workers each.
The data was released on Friday by the Central Statistics
Organisation (CSO) of the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation.
5. Nominations invited for ACJ award
The Media Development Foundation has invited nominations for
the Asian College of Journalism Award for Investigative Journalism 2018.
MDF, the trust that administers the college, said
journalists and news organisations can send entries for the award, which
carries a prize money of ?2 lakh. Awards will be given for work(s) in the
print/online category on May 3, the World Press Freedom Day, a press release
The submitted work must have been published in 2018. Entries
can be sent by post or online.
6. Noted Hindi writer Krishna Sobti dies at 93
Eminent Hindi author and essayist Krishna Sobti passed away
on Friday morning in a Delhi hospital, family sources said. She was 93. Born in
1925, Ms. Sobti was known for her writing on issues of female identity and
sexuality. She was a recipient of many awards, including the Sahitya Akademi
and Jnanpith awards, and was also offered the Padma Bhushan, which she had
7. Audit report on Rafale deal not yet complete, says CAG
The Comptroller and Auditor-General (CAG) has not yet
completed its audit report regarding purchase of the Rafale aircraft, according
to its response to an RTI query this week. This erodes the basis of the Supreme
Court’s December 2018 judgment on the Rafale case, according to RTI activists.
On December 14, the Supreme Court refused to embark on a
judicial review into the deal for procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets. One
paragraph of its judgment, however, caused considerable controversy. The verdict
said, “The pricing details have, however, been shared with the Comptroller and
Auditor-General (CAG), and the report of the CAG has been examined by the
Public Accounts Committee (PAC). Only a redacted portion of the report was
placed before Parliament and is in the public domain.”
The Centre petitioned for a correction of the statement,
saying that the court had “misinterpreted” its submission. It said that while
the government had already shared pricing details with the CAG, the CAG’s
report “is examined” by the PAC, referring to the procedure which would be
followed as and when the CAG report is ready.
8. 112 persons named for Padma awards
Former ISRO scientist S. Nambi Narayanan, who was falsely
accused by the Kerala police of spying, was selected for the Padma Bhushan on
the eve of Republic Day.
Teejan Bai, Chhattisgarh folk artist; Ismail Omar Guelleh,
President of Djibouti; Anilkumar Manibhai Naik, executive chairman of Larsen
and Toubro, and Balwant Moreshwar Purandare, theatre artist from Maharashtra,
were named for Padma Vibhushan.
Former Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar; lawyer for 1984 Sikh
riots victim H.S. Phoolka; cricketer Gautam Gambhir; composer Shankar
Mahadevan; and actor Prabhu Deva were among the Padma Shri recipients.
This year, the President has approved the names of 112
winners for the Padma awards. The list comprises four Padma Vibhushan, 14 Padma
Bhushan and 94 Padma Shri awards. Twenty-one of the winners are women. The list
includes 11 persons from the category of Foreigner/NRI, three posthumous and
one transgender. John Chambers, chairman of IT major Cisco, who participated in
Vibrant Gujarat summit last week, was selected for the Padma Bhushan. So were
renowned journalist Kuldip Nayar (posthumously) and Kerala actor Mohanlal.
The others named for the Padma Bhushan are Sukhdev Singh
Dhindsa, Akali Dal leader; Pravin Gordhan, South African Minister; Mahashay
Dharam Pal Gulati of MDH spices; Darshan Lal Jain, social worker from Haryana;
Ashok Laxmanrao Kukade for services in healthcare; Kariya Munda, former Deputy
Speaker of the Lok Sabha; Budhaditya Mukherjee, sitar artist; V.K. Shunglu,
former civil servant; Hukumdev Narayan Yadav of BJP; and mountaineer Bachendri
Delhi surgeon Dr. Sandeep Guleria, actor Manoj Bajpayee, physicist
Rohini Godbole, former ASI chief K.K. Muhammad and actor Kader Khan
(posthumously ) were selected for the Padma Shri, as also writer Gita Mehta,
sister of Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik.
9. India, South Africa seal partnership deal
India and South Africa on Friday agreed on a three-year
strategic partnership agreement to boost relations.
The agreement, signed during the visit of President Cyril
Ramaphosa, will cover defence and security, blue economy cooperation and
At the end of the delegation-level talks, Prime Minister
Narendra Modi highlighted the scope for cooperation.
India also invited South Africa to join the International
Solar Alliance (ISA) and congratulated it on securing the non-permanent
membership of the UN Security Council for 2019-20.
A joint statement acknowledged the growing interaction
between the Navies of the two countries, and the Indian leader welcomed the
South African participation in the India-Africa Field Training Exercise next
The statement reiterated the role of the Indian Ocean Naval
Symposium (IONS) that ensures freedom of navigation by keeping sea lanes free
Speaking at the first IBSA Gandhi-Mandela Freedom Lecture,
organised by the Indian Council of World Affairs, Mr. Ramaphosa highlighted the
common heritage of struggle and the common aspiration of non-discriminatory
national and international politics.
10. In rare honour, Army chief finds a place on medal list
In a rare gesture, the Chief of the Army Staff, General
Bipin Rawat, has been awarded the Param Vishisht Seva Medal (PVSM) for
distinguished service on the eve of the 70th Republic Day.
Lance Naik Nazir Ahmad Wani has been posthumously awarded
Ashok Chakra, India’s highest peace time gallantry award. Kashmir’s first Ashok
Chakra winner was awarded the Sena Medal in 2007 and 2018. The award will be
presented by President Ram Nath Kovind to his wife, Mahajabeen, at the Republic
“Since his enrolment in the Army, Lance Naik Nazir Ahmad
Wani epitomised qualities of a fine soldier,” the citation reads. The award
comes for his role in a counter-terrorist operation on November 25, 2018,
against six terrorists at Hirapur village near Batgund in Kashmir.
The President approved the award of 411 gallantry and
distinguished service medals. These include one Ashoka Chakra, four Kirti
Chakra, 11 Shaurya Chakra, 28 PVSMs, three Uttam Yudh Seva Medals, 51 Ati
Vishisht Seva Medals, 10 Yudh Seva Medals, 122 Vishisht Seva Medals, 109 Sena
Medals (gallantry), seven Nao Sena Medals (gallantry), two Vayu Sena Medals
(gallantry), 40 Sena Medals (devotion to duty), nine Nao Sena Medals (devotion
to duty) and 14 Vayu Sena Medals (devotion to duty). The Kirti Chakras were awarded
to Major Tushar Gauba and posthumously to Sowar Vijay Kumar, Constable Rajendra
Kumar Nain and Constable Pradip Kumar Panda.
11. 855 police personnel to get medals
As many as 855 police personnel were selected for awards on
the occasion of Republic Day.
Pradip Kumar Panda and Rajendra Kumar Nain, Central Reserve
Police Force constables, have been selected for the Kirti Chakra posthumously.
Assistant Commandant Zile Singh has been selected for the Shaurya Chakra for
showing exemplary bravery during a fidayeen attack on a CRPF camp at Lethpora
in Awantipura district of Kashmir on the December 30, 2017.
Mohammad Yaseen, Borase Dinesh Dipak and Jaswant Singh, CRPF
constables, have been selected for the President’s Police Medal for Gallantry
The Police Medals for Gallantry will be given to 146
personnel, President’s Police Medals for Distinguished Service to 74 and the
Police Medals for Meritorious Service to 632.
Among those selected for the gallantry medal, 41 are from
the CRPF, 26 from the Odisha police, 25 from the Jammu and Kashmir police, 14
from the Chhattisgarh police, 13 from the Meghalaya police, 10 from the Uttar
Pradesh police, eight from the Border Security Force, four from the Delhi
police and three from the Jharkhand police. One each is from the Assam Rifles
and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP).
Assistant Commandant Anurag Kumar Singh of the ITBP has been
selected for the gallantry medal as he was part of the team that killed
Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Abu Dujana in J&K in 2017. CISF constable Sushil
Bhoi was awarded the ‘Jeevan Raksha Padak’ for rescuing a 14-year-old boy
trapped in a crevasse in a high-rise building in Ghaziabad.Eight-six personnel
have been selected for the Fire Service Medals. As many as 58 will be given the
Home Guard and Civil Defence Medals.
12. Greek Parliament approves Macedonia name-change deal
Greek lawmakers ratified an agreement on Friday to end a
nearly three decade-long dispute over neighbouring Macedonia’s name, a landmark
vote intended to clear the small country that will be renamed North Macedonia
on the path to NATO membership.
The deal passed with 153 votes in the 300-member Greek
Parliament, two more than needed. It had faced fierce opposition and cost Prime
Minister Alexis Tsipras his parliamentary majority after a right-wing partner
in the governing coalition quit in protest.
Tsipras’ left-wing Syriza party holds 145 seats in
parliament; independent lawmakers provided the votes needed for ratification.
Under the deal, Macedonia changes its name to North
Macedonia and Greece will drop its objections to the country joining NATO and
eventually the European Union.
Friday’s vote came after three days of acrimonious
parliamentary debate and numerous street protests, some of which turned
Greece has long argued use of the term Macedonia implied
territorial claims on its own northern province of the same name. The issue has
been a contentious one for decades, and has whipped up nationalist and
patriotic sentiment in both countries.
Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC)
Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO)
Central Statistics Organisation (CSO)
Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP)
14. Things to Remember:
President of India – Shri Ramnath Kovind
15. Improve your Vocabulary:
Meaning 1 – Make (a problem, injury, or offence) worse or
Example – ‘military action would only aggravate the
Synonyms – worsen, make worse, exacerbate, inflame, compound
Meaning 2 – Annoy or exasperate.
Synonyms – annoy, irritate, exasperate, anger, irk, vex, put
out, nettle, provoke, incense, rile, infuriate, antagonize, get on someone’s
nerves, rub up the wrong way, make someone’s blood boil, ruffle someone’s
feathers, ruffle, try someone’s patience, make someone’s hackles rise