Here are today’s important headlines with key details for UPSC, SSC, IBPS and other competitive examinations.
India-Russia Naval Exercise ‘Indra’ begins in Bay of Bengal
- The 9th edition of Indra Navy exercise between Indian Navy and Russian Navy began today, December 14, 2016, in the Bay of Bengal. This annual bilateral maritime exercise will continue till December 21, 2016. The main aim of this exercise is to enhance the inter-operability between the two navies and develop a common understanding for maritime security operations.
- The Indian Navy will be represented by guided missile destroyer INS Ranvir, indigenous frigate INS Satpura and indigenous Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) corvette INS Kamorta.
- Additionally, P8I Long Range Maritime Patrol Aircraft, Hawk Advanced Jet Trainer, Dornier Short Range Maritime Patrol Aircraft, a submarine and other integral rotary wing helicopters are also scheduled to participate in this bilateral exercise.
- The Russian Federation Navy (RuFN) will be represented by Rear Admiral Eduard Mikhalov, Deputy Chief of Flotilla, Pacific Fleet and ships from the Pacific Fleet which are based at Vladivostok.
- RuFN ships Admiral Tributus (cruiser) and Boris Butoma (fleet tanker) arrived at Visakhapatnam on December 14, 2016.
- It will be conducted in two phases- the Harbour Phase (14 to 18 December 2016) at Visakhapatnam and the Sea Phase (December 19 to 21, 2016) off Visakhapatnam.
- The Harbour Phase will include table-top exercises, planning conferences, and professional interactions prior progressing to sea.
- While, Sea Phase will be focused on Air Defence Drills, Surface Firings, visit Board Search and Seizure (VBSS) and Tactical procedures.
- It will help to further strengthen mutual confidence and will also enable sharing of best practices between both navies.
India-IBRD signs Grant Agreement for additional funding of MSME’s project
- India on December 13, 2016, signed a Grant Agreement of USD 5.19 million with International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) for Additional Financing for Financing Energy Efficiency at MSMEs Project- Programmatic Framework for Energy Efficiency.
- The additional financing will be used to scale up the initiatives that were taken up under the parent project.
- It will bridge the gap in understanding among different stakeholders mainly energy professionals or technology suppliers, banks and financial institutions.
- It will be implemented through a three-pronged approach- (i) Capacity building (ii) Direct involvement to augment EE investments at MSME level and (iii) Escalating the EE knowledge base to scale up and replicate the project initiatives such as by establishing key performance indicators.
Gujarat to have Wagah like border point
- The ever-popular ‘border viewing point’ of the Wagah border will soon be recreated in Gujarat’s Banaskantha district. The new viewing point will be opened at Nadabet near Suigam, a village near the India-Pakistan border.
- The main purpose of the development is to promote tourism and all tourists visiting the centre will be provided with the same facilities that are made available at the Wagah Border.
Qatar replaces Kafala rules with contract based labour system
- Qatar on December 13, 2016, abolished the controversial Kafala labour system. The system has been replaced with a new contract-based labour system to ensure enhanced rights to the migrant labourers.
About Kafala system:
- Kafala is based on sponsorship model. Under this system, every immigrant worker to Qatar required a local sponsor. The sponsor may be in the form of a company or an individual.
- An immigrant worker needed the permission of the sponsor to switch jobs or leave the company.
- The discretionary power on the part of the sponsor was misused a lot of times. The sponsors used to exploit the expatriates physically, financially and emotionally. Hence, the kafala system was identified as modern-day slavery.
About Contract system
- Under this system, an immigrant worker needs to enter a contract with a company or an individual to obtain work visa.
- Under this system, a worker can change job easily by fulfilling obligations under the contract.
- Exit from the country is guaranteed as the worker is no longer required the prior approval of the company or individual employer.
Here is a list of last few articles on Current Affairs and the Monthly Bullet on Current Affairs for SSC, Banking, UPSC and other competitive exams
Monthly Bullet Pdf for December 2016