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UPSC News - Feb 28
1. Toll rises to 38,Delhi limps to normalcy
The death toll in the violence in Northeast Delhi has climbed 38 now,with 11 more persons succumbing to their injuries.However,no major clashes took place in the capital and thus shifting the focus to investigation,relief and rehabilitation.
The death toll in the Delhi violence that rocked the northeast region of the capital has now rose to 38 with 11 more death cases reported from different hospitals.The CM of Delhi,Arvind Kejriwal who is serving his second tenure as CM of Delhi has announced RS 10 lakh for the kin of those killed in the riots.
Meanwhile, the region is returning to normalcy as no fresh incidents of the violence has been reported.Thus, clearing the air for investigations,relief and rehabilitation.In regard to the investigation,police has registered 48 FIRs with the arrest of 514 suspects who have been detained or arrested for questioning so far.special teams also carried out raids in Delhi- National capital region to arrest the rioters.
The communal clashes began in northeast Delhi over the amended Citizenship law and spiralled into bloodshed,looting and arson.The body of an IB officer was found in a drain and there were scattered incidents of shops and vehicles being set on fire in Maujpur,Bhajanpura and other areas.
2. Maharashtra may follow Bihar's path on NRC,NPR.
The MVA (Maha Vikas Aghadi) government in Maharashtra is going to follow the footsteps and take cue from the Bihar government on its stand on NRC and NPR by not implementing the NRC and implementing the NPR without changing the format of 2010.
The MVA government in Maharashtra is going to make a big move and follow the Bihar government on its stand on NPR and NRC.
CM Udhav Thackeray has announced that they will not implement NRC in Maharashtra and disallow any controversial columns in NPR. They will only conduct a census exercise in the state.
The Nitish Kumar led Bihar government which is in alliance with the BJP has passed a resolution to not implement NRC(National Register of citizenship) and to implement NPR(National population Register) only that too without changing the format of 2010.
In Bihar,the BJP is in ruling power and still, Nitish Kumar could manage to pass a resolution against the NRC thus,the BJP is getting weak on these lines now.
The MVA is a coalition government formed in Maharashtra after 2019 elections under the leadership of Sharad Pawar of NCP, Udhav Thackrey of Shiv Sena and Sonia Gandhi Of INC along with support from the SP,PWPI,Prahar Janshakti.
3. Australia need liberal trade arrangements
Australia which has suffered financially due to major bushfires which engulfed almost a quarter of the Australian countryside, is now all set for business and trade and will seek greater access to investing partners.
Australian Trade Minister Simon Birmingham has shown the readiness of the country for business and trade events despite the bushfires.The Canberra has announced an additional A$1million this week to keep selling packages around the T20 world cup events.
The statement comes amid some media reports and misinformation especially in some sections of the US about the extent of bushfires wherein almost the whole of the map of Australia has been shown in flames.
The country is expecting to boost its bilateral trade,investment across resources, agribusiness and produce and even higher education services sectors.About the India-Australia Business exchange,a 120 member business delegation is coming India in the first week of March.
Recently,the Coronavirus upsurge of Coronavirus has also hit the tourism and trade of Australia with China.In some cases,India may get benefited with the available opportunities.
India was Australia's 8th largest partner of trade and 5th largest export market in the year 2018-2019 driven mostly by coal and higher education.
4. UK threatens to pull out of EU trade talks
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government has rebuffed EU demands for common trading standards and continued fishing rights. This rejection has heightened tensions between UK and EU after Brexit.
UK has also warned that if a broad outline of a deal is not agreed to ahead of a meeting planned in June, it will walk away from the talks entirely.
Senior government minister Michael Gove said, "We want the best possible trading relationship with the EU, but in a pursuit of a deal, we will not trade away our sovereignty.”
The EU said it was also preparing for all scenarios.“The Commission maintains its capacity to prepare for no deal following the result of those negotiations,” spokeswoman Dana Spinant said.
Britain left the EU on January 31, but both sides agreed to a standstill transition period lasting until December 31 to allow time to strike a new partnership.
Johnson is seeking a free trade agreement similar to the EU’s deal with Canada, alongside separate agreements on fishing, energy and aviation
Brussels, however, says that Britain’s case is different and that a deal like the Canadian agreement would give it an uncompetitive advantage by relaxing costly environmental and labour laws. It wants Britain to mirror EU standards if it wants to continue freely trading goods with the bloc’s huge single market.
Brussels also wants its state aid rules to apply in the U.K. — something London rejects.
5. PIB - India-Myanmar ink 10 MOUs during Myanmar President’s state visit (Feb 26-29)
India has seen two important state visits in the last week, one of US President Donald Trump and the other of President U Win Myint from Myanmar. The four-day visit garnered less press coverage, though it did see the two countries sign many important agreements with each other.
Myanmar President U Win Myint and his wife Daw Cho Cho were welcomed during the visit by his Indian counterpart at a state banquet. The President has inked ten agreements around agricultural projects, electricity distribution, construction of schools, anti-trafficking measures and communications.
They also agreed to construct an integrated check post at Tamu, (one of the two land border crossing between the two) to enable easy movement of passenger and cargo traffic.
They also agreed to resume bilateral relations on multiple fronts and expedite several India-funded projects in Myanmar.
India has completed many projects for socio-economic development in Chin state and Naga self-administered region with 43 schools, 18 health centres and 51 bridges and roads.
6. PIB - Defence minister Rajnath Singh inaugurates new LCA production hangar
Union Defence minister Rajnath Singh has inaugurated a new light combat helicopter production hangar, at the HAL complex in Bengaluru. The unit is an extension of PM Modi’s ‘Make in India’ vision, he said at the occasion.
The new Light Combat Helicopter Production Hangar has been set up at Helicopter Division in Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) Complex at Bengaluru, Karnataka.
Singh also lauded HAL’s contributions in helping India to rise 6 places, to become the fifth largest economy in the world. Defence exports have crossed Rs 17,000 crore in the last two years and are targeted to achieve a target of Rs 35,000 crore in the coming years.
The new hangar is all set for operational induction and the helicopter complex is geared for its production. It will boost India’s LCH production capacity to 30 helicopters per year.
These aircraft are 5.5 tonne combat helicopters, with two SHakti engines. These craft are the first helicopters which can land in forward bases in Siachen, 4700 metres above sea level, with a 500kg load.
Meanwhile, HAL is also working on the new design and development programme for Indian multi role helicopter (IMRH). These are proposed to replace existing medium lift helicopters like Mi 17, Kamovs and Seakings, which are due to be phased out in the next 8-10 years.
7. PIB - Coronavirus update
India has evacuated 124 people from Japan and 112 from Wuhan, in evacutation missions. The Japan rescue from the Diamond Princess Cruise ship which is quarantined off the coast of Japan, brought home 119 Indians and 5 from neighbouring countries. The Wuhan rescue brought home 76 Indians and 36 people from other countries. Health minister Dr Harsh Vardhan released these details, saying that all evacuees have reached India today.
Dr Harsh Vardhan added that Japanese evacuees will be quarantined at the Army camp at Manesar, while those from Wuhan shall be housed at the ITBP facility at Chhawla.
The Japanese ship had 138 Indian nationals onboard, out of which 122 were tested for the virus. Barring 3, none were found positive for the virus and these 3 opted not to come back. The remaining 16 are receiving treatment in Japanese hospitals.
Till now, India has screened 4,82,927 passengers from 4787 flights. Screenings are taking place at 21 Airports, 12 major seaports and 65 minor seaports and land crossings particularly bordering Nepal.
Besides these, out of the 2836 samples sent for testing, 2830 are found negative, 3 samples were earlier found positive in Kerala (these have recovered and have been discharged) and 3 are under testing.
All 645 evacuees at the earlier camps at Manesar and Chhawla were discharged on 18th February 2020.