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All India Radio News Summary: 11 NOVEMBER 2017

All India Radio News Summary: 11 NOVEMBER 2017

  1. GST Council reduces tax on 178 items from 28 to 18 per cent; Only 50 items in highest slab of 28 per cent;

The Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council has announced major changes in the new national law, reducing tax rate on a wide range of products.

  • Tax on 178 items has been reduced to 18 per cent from 28 per cent and only 50 items now remain in the highest tax slab of 28 per cent.
  • Dining out will also become cheaper, food at all restaurants in the country, except those in starred hotels, will be taxed at 5 per cent rather than 18 per cent, without the Input Tax Credit (ITC).
  • The new rates will be effective from the 15th of this month.


Prime Minister hailed the Council’s decisions. PM said,

  • The recommendations made by the Council will further benefit the citizens and add strength to the GST.
  • The recommendations are in spirit of the continuous feedback that the government is getting from various stakeholders on GST.
  • People’s participation is at the core of his government’s working adding that the Centre is working tirelessly for the country’s economic integration through GST.


  1. Home Ministry sets up two new divisions to deal with radicalisation and cyber crime.

The Union Home Ministry has formed two new divisions to exclusively deal with emerging security challenges such as radicalisation and cyber-crime.

  • The two new divisions called Counter-Terrorism and Counter-Radicalisation (CTCR) and the Cyber and Information Security (CIS) also encompass merger of some of the Ministry’s existing divisions.
  • The CTCR wing, which is basically modified version of the Home Ministry’s internal security-II division, will focus on tracking and assessing the online reach of global terrorist outfits and devising strategies to counter their propaganda.
  • The CIS division will monitor online crimes and threats, including cyber fraud and hacking, and suggest ways to minimise and fight them.
  • The need for a counter-radicalisation division and policy was felt as Union Home Minister was keen that the problem should be solved from the base.
  • The Ministry’s judicial division and centre-state divisions are also being rolled into one, as are international cooperation and public grievances divisions.


  1. Centre issues advisory to states to create awareness among farmers about harmful effects of straw burning

The Agriculture Ministry has issued an advisory to the state governments to create awareness among the farmers about the harmful effects of straw burning.

  • Burning of crop residue in states like Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan contributes in increasing environmental pollution levels.
  • In view of the severe air pollution in Delhi, agriculture Ministry directed the four states to facilitate farmers residue management machines and equipment such as Happy seeder, rotavator and paddy straw chopper through Custom Hiring Centres or village level Farm Machinery Banks.
  • The states have also been directed to utilise 4,000 per hectare funds available under the ‘Sub-Mission on Agricultural Mechanisation’ for demonstration of straw management machines at farmers’ fields.


  1. Prime Minister to embark on a three day visit to the Phillippines to participate in the ASEAN summit. 

Unprecedented security arrangements have been put in place in Manila, as global leaders have started arriving in the Philippines capital to attend the 31st ASEAN summit and the East Asia Summit.

  • Prime Minister will be participating in the 50th anniversary celebrations of the regional grouping ASEAN.
  • India is a strategic partner in the longest serving regional grouping.
  • He will also address the East Asia Summit, the 15th Indo-ASEAN summit, the ASEAN Business and Investment meet.
  • A quadrilateral meeting on strategic maters between high-ranking officials of India, the US, Japan and Australia is also being worked out on the sidelines of the summits. 


  1. National Green Tribunal gives nod to Odd-Even scheme in Delhi from Monday; No exemptions for two wheelers and women drivers;

The National Green Tribunal, NGT has given its nod to the Delhi government’s Odd Even scheme in the National capital beginning from Monday.

  • Hearing the issue, the tribunal said the Delhi government is free to implement the rationing scheme, subject to conditions.
  • It said, the scheme can be implemented when PM10 level is above 500 micrograms per cubic metre and PM 2.5 above 300 micrograms per cubic metre.
  • It also directed that there will be no exemption for two wheelers, government servants or women.
  • However, CNG vehicles, emergency services such as ambulance and fire have been exempted from odd-even scheme.


  1. NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant emphasises on the use of technology to further improve ease of doing business in the country;

NITI Aayog CEO has emphasised the use of technology to further improve ease of doing business in the country. He said,

  • The world economy is facing financial turbulence and down trend, but Indian economy is still performing well.
  • However, said India has to make structural changes to meet global economic challenges.
  • India and China remain major drivers of world economy.
  • India is becoming a centre of manufacturing and an integral part of the global supply chain.  
  • Digital payments have grown substantially in the country which is a good sign for the country’s economy. 
  1. Members of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) have agreed on a new framework to revive the proposed trade deal

Members of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) have agreed on a new framework to revive the proposed trade deal, following the US withdrawal earlier this year.

  • At a meeting on the side-lines of the APEC summit in Vietnam, the remaining eleven nations in a joint statement said they had agreed on the core elements of a deal.
  • It would now be called the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).


  1. The United States and South Korea start four-day naval drills in clear a warning to North Korea.

The United States and South Korea started joint naval exercises involving three U.S. aircraft carriers in what military officials described as a clear warning to North Korea.

  • The four-day drills that began in waters off South Korea’s eastern coast
  • Japan is also participating in the drill.
  • Japan announced that it would send its largest warship to join three U.S. aircraft carriers in exercises in waters near the Korean Peninsula, a display of military force meant to pressure North Korea.
  • The exercises will also involve 11 U.S. Aegis ships and seven South Korean naval vessels, including two Aegis ships. The Aegis technology refers to missile defence.


  1. Russia and US agreed on a joint statement on Syria

Russian President and US President agreed on a joint statement on Syria today that said there was no military solution to the conflict and a political one was needed.

  • The statement was approved on the side-lines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in the Vietnamese resort of Danang.