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  • MANTHAN Current Affairs Supplement April, 2016

    MANTHAN April, 2016 Page : 1

    NATIONAL India opts not to join global terror database

    The government has decided not to join a U.S. maintained global terror database in the face of objections from the intelligence agencies.

    Unhindered access to the Americans to the database of terror suspects in India, which includes their biometric details, was opposed by both the Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) and the Intelligence Bureau (IB).

    The proposal has been stuck since it was initially proposed by the U.S. in 2012.

    The Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD-6) is an agreement for exchange of terrorist screening information between the Terrorist Screening Centre (TCS) of the U.S. and a selected Indian security agency. The TCS has the database of 11,000 terror suspects.

    SC extends ban on high-end diesel cars, SUVs

    The court had banned registration of diesel-run private cars of the capacity of 2000 CC and above and SUVs on December 16, 2015, in a bid to cut down air pollution in the city. The ban was to continue till March 31, 2016.

    Now the ban is further extended, as the Supreme Court has refused to lift the ban ordered on their fresh registration in the National Capital Region (NCR).

    They pointed out that some SUVs like Toyota Innova and Tata Sumo with over 2000 CC engine capacity could hardly be described as luxury cars.

    Noting that it was sensitive about the dent the ban has caused to the economy, the Bench asked the car companies to come up with possible alternatives to curb the rising air pollution in the city.

    Western Command launches think tank Gyan Chakra

    A think tank on Defence and Strategic Affairs has been formed by the Armys Western Command, aimed at providing an outlet to veterans for pursuing research on strategic and national security issues.

    Western Command in a new path breaking initiative has launched a Defence and Strategic Affairs Think Tank aptly named Gyan Chakra.

    Gyan Chakra is being launched to fulfil a long-standing requirement of defence veterans though not articulated.

    The idea behind conceptualizing this think tank is to attract leading strategic thinkers, defence analysts, scholars and academicians and provide them a platform to deliberate on strategic and national security issues.

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    PM Modi outlines nuclear security steps

    India pledged a contribution of $1 million to the IAEA nuclear security fund at the fourth and final Nuclear Security Summit (NSS).

    Prime minister Narendra Modi underlined the priority India has attached to nuclear security at home, in terms of institutional frameworks, resources for training people, and by continuing to reflect Indias international obligations in national actions.

    He also told the gathering how India was moving to safer technologies to protect radioactive material.

    In this regard, he outlined Indias plans to enhance engagement with the IAEA, the Interpol and other international forums on the issue of nuclear security.

    PM Modi on a 2-day visit to Saudi Arabia

    Mr Modi's visit to Saudi Arabia is aimed at reinvigorating Indias strategic partnership with the oil-rich country, particularly in areas of counter-terrorism, energy and trade.

    Mr Modi and King Salman of Saudi Arabia will discuss a wide range of bilateral, regional and global issues. It will include terrorism, security cooperation and commercial and economic ties.

    India is a historic partner for Saudi Arabia and they hold a common outlook on life including many traditions and values.

    A framework for investment promotion would be signed between SAGIA and National Investment Promotion Agency of India.

    Maharashtra government pledges entry for women in all temples

    The Maharashtra government on 1st April, 2016, gave an undertaking to the Bombay High Court that it would ensure that women are allowed to enter all temples in the state, a move that may bring relief to women's groups, but could equally anger radical Hindu outfits.

    "It is the fundamental duty of the state to protect the fundamental rights of women," read the Bombay High Court order, adding that it has to ensure due compliance and enforcement of the provisions of the Act.

    Landmark project Aadhar reaches 1 billion marks

    Aadhaar has hit the one-billion mark, with that many persons now allotted a Unique Identification Number in the country.

    The unique Identification number has ensured direct benefit transfer of government schemes to poorest of the poor and helped save millions of rupees in terms of leakage.

    Under this scheme Biometric details along with iris mapping and fingerprints are digitally tagged to the number to eliminate ghosts and duplicates.

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    Mehbooba Mufti sworn in as J&K's first woman CM

    Mehbooba Mufti, president of the Peoples Democratic Party, took the oath as the first woman Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, thereby ending 11 weeks of political uncertainty. Twenty three ministers were sworn in alongside Ms. Mufti.

    The Governor has inviteed Mehbooba Mufti to form the government.

    PM Modi conferred Saudi Arabia's highest civilian honour

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been conferred Saudi Arabia's highest civilian honour by the King of Saudi Arabia.

    Order of Abdulaziz al Saud is the highest award of the nation. The order was named after Abdulaziz Al Saud, the founder of the modern Saudi state.

    White tiger safari inaugurated in MP's Satna district

    Union Minister for Environment and Forests Prakash Javdekar inaugurated the worlds maiden white tiger safari at Mukundpur in Satna district.

    This was done to mark the 100th year, when the first white tiger was spotted in MPs Vindhya region in 1915 during a hunting expedition by Maharaja of Rewa Martand Singh.The rare bread of the big cat which was caught for the first time, died in 1920.

    Spread over 25 hectares, the White Tiger safari is home to three white tigers including one male, two females and two Royal Bengal tigers.

    Nashik: Trimbakeshwar Temple trust bars entry for all, men & women

    In a rare turn of events, from now on men devotees will also not be allowed to enter the sanctum sanctorum of Trimbakeshwar temple in Nashik district of Maharashtra.

    The decision was taken after a meeting of temple trustees at Nashik.

    Two days ago, the Bombay high court had ruled that women be treated equally at places of worship and it was the responsibility of the state government to protect the fundamental rights of women.

    India sets up team to fight threats from nuclear and radioactive material

    According to India's National Progress Report presented at the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, India has set up at the national level an institutional mechanism called a Counter Nuclear Smuggling Team.

    Composition of Counter Nuclear Smuggling Team

    It has representation from ministries, departments and agencies concerned with use of nuclear and radioactive material.

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    To conduct table-top exercises for effective and coordinated response to threats.

    To devise a coordinated multi-agency approach to deal with the threat of individuals or group of individuals acquiring nuclear or radioactive material for malicious purposes.

    Indian Navy's first training squadron deployed in Phuket

    Indian naval ships Tir and Sujata, and sail-training ship Sudarshini along with Indian Coast Guard's Varuna, reached Phuket in Thailand as part of an overseas deployment during spring.

    The primary aim of the Squadron is to impart sea training to naval and Coast Guard trainees, with a 24-week ab initio (from the beginning) sea training.

    All the participants are trained in seamanship, navigation, ship handling, boat work, technical aspects among other disciplines, while being exposed to the rigours of life at sea, so as to earn their 'sea legs'.

    About Southern Naval Command (SNC)

    SNC is the Training Command of the Indian Navy, which provides both basic and advanced training to its officers and sailors.


    The Indian Navy has also been providing training to personnel from friendly foreign countries for over four decades, wherein more than 13,000 personnel from more than 40 countries have been trained.

    India and Thailand have a close, long-standing relationship covering a wide spectrum of activities and interactions, which have strengthened over the years.

    Significance of Present deployment

    The present deployment of the Training Squadron to Phuket provides opportunities for extensive maritime engagement, maintenance of good order at sea and further cementing of the close relations between the two nations and the two navies, the Indian Navy said in a statement.

    Government's mission is to achieve one nation, one grid, and one price by 2019.


    Uniform power rates across the country i.e. Rs 4.40.

    Year 2016-17 is dedicated to hydro power.

    OROP gets retrospective Cabinet nod

    The One Rank One Pension scheme, brought in November-2015 to benefit more than 2.5 million ex- servicemen and war widows, on April 6, 2016 received ex-post facto approval from the Cabinet.

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