7 September 2018 Current Affairs

Section 377 | India-US | COMCASA | PMJDY | Telangana Assembly | IL&FS |

Posted on Sep 07, 2018 04:12 IST in Current Affairs.

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1) The Supreme Court on 6 September 2018 gave its historic verdict on Section 377 - the colonial law criminalizing homosexuality in India by decriminalizing it. In which year a Supreme Court bench had overturned a Delhi High Court order that had ruled in favour of decriminalizing section 377? – In 2013

Explanation: Section 377 criminalises sexual intercourse that is penile and non-vaginal, deeming it “against the order of nature”. The law affects the rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) population, in particular, but its provisions can also be applied to heterosexual citizens.

- In 2009, the Delhi High Court had ruled in favour of decriminalising section 377, a decision which was overturned only to by a two-judge Supreme Court bench in 2013, in the Suresh Kumar Koushal versus Naz Foundation case.

- In a historic order on 6 September 2018, the Chief Justice of India Justice Dipak Misra said the LGBT community has same fundamental rights as other citizens. The bench headed by him, however, made it clear that no one should be under the impression that it will scrap section 377 altogether as it will lead to anarchy and rise in crimes relating to forced unnatural acts.

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2) Which historic agreement between India and the United States (US) was signed on 6 September 2018 that ushered a new era of military and security cooperation between the two countries? - Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA)

Explanation: India and the United States on 6 September 2018 began a new generation of military and security cooperation by signing the Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA).

- This historic agreement was signed on the sidelines of the inaugural 2+2 dialogue held in New Delhi. The bilateral dialogue was attended by U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo and Secretary of Defense James N. Mattis and their Indian counterparts Sushma Swaraj and Nirmala Sitharaman.

- COMCASA is one the four foundational agreements that the U.S. signs with allies and close partners to facilitate interoperability between militaries. This agreement allows India to procure encrypted communication systems from the U.S. for military platforms like the C-17, C-130 and P-8Is. Due to non-signing of COMCASA, these platforms were using commercially available communication systems.

- India and the U.S. would also hold a first-ever tri-service exercise on the east coast of India in 2019.

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3) The Union Cabinet on 5 September 2018 took which important decision with regard to the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY)? – To make PMJDY an open-ended scheme

Explanation: The Cabinet on 5 September 2018 gave its nod to turn the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) into an open-ended scheme with higher insurance cover and double the overdraft (OD) facility. This decision was taken to continue the scheme beyond 28 August 2018.

- PMJDY, also known as National Mission on Financial Inclusion (NMFI), has 32.41 crore accounts and deposits worth Rs. 81.2 crore.

- The government has increased the overdraft limit to Rs. 10,000 from the existing Rs. 5,000. In addition, no condition will be attached for any overdraft up to Rs. 2,000. Also, the accident insurance cover for new RuPay cardholders has been raised to Rs. 2 lakh.

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4) In a surprise decision, the Telangana Government headed by Chief Minister K Chandrasekhara Rao on 6 September 2018 dissolved the Telangana state legislative assembly much ahead of its full 5-year term. The Assembly had its tenure till which month? – June 2019

Explanation: In a bewildering political decision, the council of ministers headed by chief minister K. Chandrasekhara Rao on 6 September 2018 approved a resolution to dissolve the Telangana state legislative assembly almost eight months ahead of its five-year term.

- Chief Minister Rao handed over the cabinet resolution copy recommending the dissolution of the state assembly to Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan on the same day. The Governor requested Rao and his council of ministers to continue in the government.

- The Telangana government headed by K.Chandrasekhara Rao was formed on 2 June 2014 on the day of formal division of the undivided Andhra Pradesh while the elections were held in April-May period in the same year.

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5) According to media reports appearing in a section of media on 6 September 2018, which financial institution has defaulted on a loan repayment recently, making it the first case of an Indian large financial institution making such default? - IL&FS

Explanation: Facing intense liquidity pressures, Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services (IL&FS) has defaulted on a loan repayment to Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), according to media reports appearing on 6 September 2018. Reports also mentioned that it was a short-term loan amounting to Rs 10 billion.

- This is the first-ever instance in India where a large financial institution has defaulted on a loan repayment. IL&FS is a leading infrastructure development and finance company with its headquarters in Mumbai. Its projects includes India's longest tunnel, Chenani-Nashri Tunnel, which was opened for traffic on 2 April 2017.

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