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Current Affairs Analysis

15th June 2017 Current Affairs Analysis – IASToppers

Interest Subvention Scheme (ISS); Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill, 2017; Bosphorus Strait; International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea; Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH); Rescue wards for injured animals; Man Booker International prize
By IT's Current Affairs Analysis Team
June 15, 2017

Contents

Polity & Governance

  • Cabinet approves Interest Subvention to banks on Short-Term crop loan to farmers
  • Nod for Insolvency Bill for financial entities

Environment, Ecology & Disaster Management

  • What’s up with Bosphorus?

Bilateral & International Relations

  • Neeru Chadha becomes first Indian woman to be member of International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea

Key Facts for Prelims

  • Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH)
  • Rescue wards for injured animals
  • Man Booker International prize

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Polity & Governance

Cabinet approves Interest Subvention to banks on Short-Term crop loan to farmers

The Union cabinet has approved the Interest Subvention Scheme (ISS) for farmers for the year 2017-18. The Government has allocated Rs. 20,339 crore for this scheme.

Key facts:

ias-toppers-Interest-Subvention-Scheme

  • The scheme will be continued for 1 year and will be implemented by NABARD and RBI.
  • The objective of the scheme is to make available agricultural credit for Short Term crop loans at an affordable rate.
  • The interest subvention will be provided to Public Sector Banks (PSBs), Private Sector Banks, Cooperative Banks and Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) and to NABARD for refinancing to RRBs and Cooperative Banks.
  • The scheme is expected to boost agricultural productivity and production in the country.
  • Under this scheme, farmers will be given a short term crop loan up to Rs. 3 lakh payable within one year at an interest rate of 4% per annum.
  • Interest subvention of 5% per annum will be provided to those farmers who pay the short term crop loan in time.
  • Farmers will have to effectively pay only 4% as interest. For farmers who do not pay crop loan in time the interest subvention of only 2% will be applicable as against 5% available above.
  • This institutional credit is expected to demotivate farmers from taking loans from non-institutional sources of credit at high rates of interest.

Background:

  • Interest Subvention Scheme (ISS) has been running since 2006-07.
  • Under this scheme, crop loans are offered at 7% rate of interest for loans up to Rs.3 lakh.
  • Further subvention of 3% will be provided to farmers who prompt repay the loans within a period of one year from the date of advance.
  • The scheme also offers post-harvest loans for storage in accredited warehouses against Negotiable Warehouse Receipts (NWRs) for a period of 6 months to check distress sale.
[Ref: The Hindu]

 

Nod for Insolvency Bill for financial entities

The Union Cabinet has approved the proposal to introduce the Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill, 2017.

About the bill:

ias-toppers-Financial-Resolution-and-Deposit-Insurance-Bill

  • The Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill, 2017, seeks to give comfort to consumers of financial service providers in financial distress.
  • It also aims to inculcate discipline among financial service providers in the event of financial crises by limiting the use of public money to bail out distressed entities.
  • It would help in maintaining financial stability in the economy by ensuring adequate preventive measures, while at the same time providing the necessary instruments for dealing with an event of crisis.
  • The Bill aims to strengthen and streamline the current framework of deposit insurance for the benefit of a large number of retail depositors. Further, this Bill seeks to decrease the time and costs involved in resolving distressed financial entities.
  • The Bill, when enacted, will pave the way for setting up of a resolution corporation.
  • The Bill would provide for a comprehensive resolution framework for specified financial sector entities to deal with bankruptcy situation in banks, insurance companies and financial sector entities.
  • It would lead to repeal or amendment of resolution-related provisions in sectoral Acts as listed in the schedules of the Bill.
  • It will also result in the repeal of the Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation Act, 1961, to transfer deposit insurance powers and responsibilities to the resolution corporation.
  • The resolution corporation would protect the stability and resilience of the financial system; protecting the consumers of covered obligations up to a reasonable limit; and protecting public funds, to the extent possible.

Background:

The government recently enacted the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016, for the insolvency resolution of non- financial entities. The proposed Bill complements the code by providing a resolution framework for the financial sector. Once implemented, this Bill together with the code will provide a comprehensive resolution framework for the economy.

[Ref: The Hindu, LiveMint]

 

Environment, Ecology & Disaster Management

What’s up with Bosphorus?

A sudden change in the colour of the Bosphorus Strait that divides the continents of Europe and Asia in Turkey’s largest city Istanbul since the weekend has alarmed some residents.

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Reason behind colour change:

  • The cause was a surge in numbers of the micro-organism Emiliania huxleyi.
  • One of the most successful life-forms on the planet, Emiliania huxleyi is a single-celled organism visible only under a microscope.
  • Its astonishing adaptability enables it to thrive in waters from the equator to the sub-Arctic.

Location of Bosphorus Strait:

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  • It is a natural strait connecting the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara, thus being a very strategic waterway.
  • Its length is 32 kilometers (20 miles) in the north to south direction.
  • Bosphorus strait separates the European part from the Asian part of Istanbul.

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[Ref: The Hindu]

 

Bilateral & International Relations

Neeru Chadha becomes first Indian woman to be member of International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea

In a significant victory for India at the UN, international law expert Neeru Chadha has won a crucial election to a top UN judicial body that deals with disputes related to the law of the sea.

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  • With this, she becomes the first Indian woman to be appointed as a judge at the tribunal.
  • Chadha, an eminent lawyer and the first Indian woman to become the chief legal adviser in the ministry of external affairs, is elected for a nine-year term from 2017 to 2026.
  • Chadha is only the second woman to be judge of ITLOS in its two decades of existence, where there have been a total of 40 judges.

About ITLOS:

ias toppers International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea

  • International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) is an intergovernmental organisation under the ambit of the United Nations, established in 1996.
  • ITLOS governs the laws on international waters and is one of dispute settlement mechanisms under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
  • The Tribunal has the power to settle disputes between party states.
  • India is also a signatory to this convention.
  • It is headquartered in Hamburg, Germany.
  • The ITLOS comprises of 21 serving judges.
[Ref: The Hindu]

 

Key Facts for Prelims

Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH)

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  • Parents of a CAH child, have started a support group called ‘CAH Support India’ (www.cahindia.org) involving a community of parents, grandparents and caregivers of CAH children.
  • The International Coalition for Endocrine Patient Support Organisations worldwide has listed this support group as the first such group for endocrine disorders in India.
  • CAH is an inherited disorder that affects the adrenal glands where the glands cannot produce cortisol and aldosterone, and instead produce an unwanted excess amount of androgens.
  • A child with CAH lacks enzymes the adrenal glands use to produce hormones that help regulate metabolism, the immune system, blood pressure, and other essential functions.
  • Parents with children suffering from it often have great difficulty in the upbringing of the child, including treatment, getting school admission and other support issues.

 

Rescue wards for injured animals

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  • In an attempt to reduce the number of deaths of endangered wildlife in Thar desert, new “rescue wards” have come up in the far-flung rural areas of Jodhpur, Rajasthan.
  • These will provide quick treatment to animals injured in road accidents, dog bites, etc.
  • With an average of nearly 1,000 injuries a year, the wildlife in Thar desert has witnessed 60% mortality because of lack of transport to the main rescue centre at the Jodhpur zoo. This has led to the depletion of wildlife, mainly chinkaras (Indian gazelles).

 

Man Booker International prize

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  • Israeli author David Grossman has won the Man Booker International Prize for his novel “A Horse Walks Into a Bar”.
  • He has become the first Israeli author to win the Man Booker International Prize.
  • Last year, the prize was won by South Korean author Han Kang for her novel The Vegetarian.
  • The Man Booker Prize is world’s most prestigious English-language literary award.
  • It was launched in 1969 and presented by the Man Group.
  • The international edition of the Man Booker Prize was introduced in 2005. From 2016, the prize is awarded for a single work of fiction that has been translated into English and published in the United Kingdom.

 

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