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[Mission 2022] INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY- 14 September 2021

 

 

InstaLinks help you think beyond the issue but relevant to the issue from UPSC prelims and Mains exam point of view. These linkages provided in this ‘hint’ format help you frame possible questions in your mind that might arise(or an examiner might imagine) from each current event. InstaLinks also connect every issue to their static or theoretical background. This helps you study a topic holistically and add new dimensions to every current event to help you think analytically. 

current affairs, current events, current gk, insights ias current affairs, upsc ias current affairs

 

Table of Contents

 

GS Paper 1:

1. Battle of Saragarhi.

 

GS Paper 2:

1. National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA).

2. National Commission for Minorities.

 

GS Paper 3:

1. Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC).

2. What is Input Tax Credit (ITC)?

3. Groundswell report on climate change.

 

Facts for Prelims:

1. Climate Action and Finance Mobilization Dialogue (CAFMD).

2. T+1 settlement system.


Battle of Saragarhi

GS Paper 1

Topics Covered: Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues.

 

September 12 marks the 124th anniversary of the Battle of Saragarhi that has inspired a host of armies, books and films, both at home and abroad.

 

What is the Battle of Saragarhi?

The Battle of Saragarhi was fought on 12 September 1897. It is considered one of the finest last stands in the military history of the world.

  • Twenty-one soldiers from British Army were pitted against over 8,000 Afridi and Orakzai tribals but they managed to hold the fort for seven hours.
  • Though heavily outnumbered, the soldiers of 36th Sikhs platoon led by Havildar Ishar Singh, fought till their last breath, killing 200 tribals and injuring 600.

 

Importance of Saragarhi:

Saragarhi was the communication tower between Fort Lockhart and Fort Gulistan.

  • The two forts in the rugged North West Frontier Province (NWFP), now in Pakistan, were built by Maharaja Ranjit Singh but renamed by the British.
  • Saragarhi helped to link up the two important forts which housed a large number of British troops in the rugged terrain of NWFP.

 

The legacy:

Making a departure from the tradition of not giving gallantry medals posthumously, Queen Victoria awarded the 21 dead soldiers — leaving out the non-combatant — of the 36th Sikh the Indian Order of Merit (comparable with the Victoria Cross) along with two ‘marabas’ (50 acres) and Rs 500 each.

  • The British, who regained control over the fort after a few days, used burnt bricks of Saragarhi to build an obelisk for the martyrs.
  • They also commissioned gurdwaras at Amritsar and Ferozepur in their honour.

 

Insta Curious:

Do you know about the Treaty of Gandamak, which had given the British control of Afghan foreign policy at the end of the Second Afghan War (1878-80)? Reference: read this.

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. About the battle.
  2. Causes.
  3. Outcomes.
  4. Key participants.

Source: Indian Express.

National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA)

GS Paper 2

Topics Covered: Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.

 

Context:

As it seeks to enhance engagement with stakeholders, the National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA) will set up a single stakeholders’ advisory group as well as a research cell to support the group.

 

Need for:

A large majority of the respondents have expressed the urgent need for a settlement mechanism rather than a prolonged stand-alone law making process.

 

About NFRA:

National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA) was constituted on 1st October, 2018 under section 132 (1) of the Companies Act, 2013.

 

Why was it needed?

In the wake of accounting scams, a need was felt to establish an independent regulator for enforcement of auditing standards and ensuring the quality of audits so as to enhance investor and public confidence in financial disclosures of companies.

 

Composition:

The Companies Act requires the NFRA to have a chairperson who will be appointed by the Central Government and a maximum of 15 members.

 

Functions and Duties:

  1. Recommend accounting and auditing policies and standards to be adopted by companies for approval by the Central Government;
  2. Monitor and enforce compliance with accounting standards and auditing standards;
  3. Oversee the quality of service of the professions associated with ensuring compliance with such standards and suggest measures for improvement in the quality of service;
  4. Perform such other functions and duties as may be necessary or incidental to the aforesaid functions and duties.

 

Powers:

  1. It can probe listed companies and those unlisted public companies having paid-up capital of no less than Rs 500 crore or annual turnover of no less than Rs 1,000 crore.
  2. It can investigate professional misconduct committed by members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) for prescribed class of body corporate or persons.

 

Insta Curious:

Have you heard about composition scheme under GST? What are its objectives? What is the eligibility? Reference: read this.

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Provisions under which NFRA was constituted?
  2. About ICAI.
  3. Composition of NFRA.
  4. Companies Act 2013- key provisions.

Mains Link:

Discuss the key functions of NFRA and write a note on its significance.

Sources: the Hindu.

National Commission for Minorities

GS Paper 2

Topics Covered: Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.

 

Context:

Former IPS officer Iqbal Singh Lalpura, has been chosen as chairman of National Commission for Minorities.

 

About the NCM:

  • National Commission for Minorities (NCM) was set up under the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992.
  • It Monitor the working of the safeguards for minorities provided in the Constitution and in laws enacted by Parliament and the state legislatures.

Please note, Six religious communities, viz; Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Zoroastrians (Parsis) and Jains have been notified in Gazette of India as minority communities by the Union Government all over India.

 

Background:

Setting up of the Minorities Commission (MC) was envisaged in the Ministry of Home Affairs Resolution In 1978.

  • In 1984, the ‘Minorities Commission’ was detached from the Ministry of Home Affairs and placed under the newly created Ministry of Welfare.
  • In 1992, with the enactment of the ‘National Commission for Minorities Act (NCM Act), 1992’, the MC became a statutory body and was renamed as the ‘National Commission for Minorities’ (NCM).
  • In 1993, five religious communities The Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Zoroastrians (Parsis) were notified as minority communities.
  • In 2014, Jains were also notified as a minority community.

Composition:

  • NCM consists of a Chairperson, a Vice-Chairperson and five members and all of them shall be from amongst the minority communities.
  • Total of 7 persons to be nominated by the Central Government should be from amongst persons of eminence, ability and integrity.
  • Each Member holds office for a period of three years from the date of assumption of office.

 

Other constitutional provisions to safeguard the Minorities:

  • Article 15 and 16.
  • Article 25.
  • Article 26.
  • Article 28.
  • Article 29.
  • Article 30.
  • Article 350-B: The 7th Constitutional (Amendment) Act 1956 inserted this article which provides for a Special Officer for Linguistic Minorities appointed by the President of India.

(Find out what these constitutional provisions say).

 

Insta Curious:

Do you know how are minority schools exempt from RTE and SSA? Reference: read this.

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. About NCM.
  2. Composition.
  3. Functions.
  4. Minorities in India.
  5. Procedure to be followed for inclusion or exclusion from the list.

Mains Link:

Discuss about the rights conferred on minorities by the Constitution.

Sources: the Hindu.

Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC):

GS Paper 3

Topics Covered: Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.

 

Context:

The Supreme Court has said “judicial delay” was the main reason for the failure of the insolvency regime in India prior to the 2016 Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), as it urged company law tribunals to “strictly adhere” to the timelines under the new law and clear pending resolution plans.

 

What’s the issue?

The IBC mandates a 330-day outer limit for conclusion of the corporate insolvency resolution process (CIRP).

  • However, a parliamentary panel report published last month stated that more than 71% cases have been pending before the tribunals for over 180 days.

 

Reasons for delays:

  1. The national company law appellate tribunal taking considerable time in admitting CIRPs.
  2. Multiplicity of litigation.
  3. Appeals to the NCLAT and the Supreme Court.

 

Impacts of such delays:

  • Long delays in approving the resolution plan by the adjudicating authority (NCLT) affect the subsequent implementation of the plan.
  • These delays, if systemic and frequent, will have an undeniable impact on the commercial assessment that the parties undertake during the course of the negotiation.
  • Also, they cause commercial uncertainty, degradation in the value of the corporate debtor and makes the insolvency process inefficient and expensive.

 

About the IBC:

  • The IBC was enacted in 2016, replacing a host of laws, with the aim to streamline and speed up the resolution process of failed businesses.
  • The Code also consolidates provisions of the current legislative framework to form a common forum for debtors and creditors of all classes to resolve insolvency.

 

The Code creates various institutions to facilitate resolution of insolvency. These are as follows:

  1. Insolvency Professionals.
  2. Insolvency Professional Agencies.
  3. Information Utilities.
  4. Adjudicating authorities: The National Companies Law Tribunal (NCLT); and the Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT).
  5. Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board.

 

Insta Curious:

The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill, 2021 proposed ‘pre-packs’ as an insolvency resolution mechanism for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). What are ‘pre-packs’? Reference

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. What is insolvency and bankruptcy?
  2. Various institutions established under the IBC code.
  3. NCLT- composition and functions.
  4. What are debt recovery tribunals?
  5. Sections 7, 9 and 10 of IBC.

Mains Link:

Discuss how suspension of initiation of fresh insolvency proceedings will help shield companies impacted by the outbreak of Covid-19.

Sources: the Hindu.

What is Input Tax Credit (ITC)?

GS Paper 3

Topics Covered: Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.

 

Context:

The Supreme Court has confirmed a Madras High Court judgment which upheld a fiscal formula included in the Central Goods and Service Tax Rules to execute refund of unutilised Input Tax Credit (ITC) accumulated on account of input services.

 

Background:

The Madras HC had held last year that Section 54(3) of the Central Goods and Service Tax (CGST) Act – which allows for a refund of Input Tax Credit (ITC) where the accumulation is due to an inverted duty structure – does not infringe on Article 14 of the Constitution. It said that refund of tax paid on inputs and not input services was available under the inverted duty structure.

 

 

What is Input Tax Credit (ITC)?

  • It is the tax that a business pays on a purchase and that it can use to reduce its tax liability when it makes a sale.
  • In simple terms, input credit means at the time of paying tax on output, you can reduce the tax you have already paid on inputs and pay the balance amount.

Exceptions: A business under composition scheme cannot avail of input tax credit. ITC cannot be claimed for personal use or for goods that are exempt.

 

Concerns over its misuse:

  1. There could be possibility of misuse of the provision by unscrupulous businesses by generating fake invoices just to claim tax credit.
  2. As much as 80% of the total GST liability is being settled by ITC and only 20% is deposited as cash.
  3. Under the present dispensation, there is no provision for real time matching of ITC claims with the taxes already paid by suppliers of inputs.
  4. Currently there is a time gap between ITC claim and matching them with the taxes paid by suppliers. Hence there is a possibility of ITC being claimed on the basis of fake invoices.

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. What is GST?
  2. What is composition scheme?
  3. What is Input tax credit?

Mains Link:

Discuss the significance of Input tax credit.

current affairs

 

Sources: the Hindu.

Groundswell report on climate change

GS Paper 3

Topics Covered: Conservation related issues.

 

Context:

The Report was recently released by the World Bank. It examined how the impacts of slow-onset climate change, such as water scarcity, decreasing crop productivity and rising sea levels, could lead to millions of what it describes as “climate migrants” by 2050.

 

Highlights and key findings of the report:

The report considers three different scenarios with varying degrees of climate action and development. These include:

  1. Most pessimistic scenario with a high level of emissions and unequal development: The report forecasts up to 216 million people moving within their own countries across the six regions analysed. Those regions are Latin America; North Africa; Sub-Saharan Africa; Eastern Europe and Central Asia; South Asia; and East Asia and the Pacific.
  2. In the most climate-friendly scenario, with a low level of emissions and inclusive, sustainable development, the world could still see 44 million people being forced to leave their homes.
  3. In the worst-case scenario, Sub-Saharan Africa — the most vulnerable region due to desertification, fragile coastlines and the population’s dependence on agriculture — would see the most migrants, with up to 86 million people moving within national borders.

 

Other impacts:

  • Hotspots of internal climate migration could emerge as early as 2030 and continue to spread and intensify by 2050.

 

The report provides a series of policy recommendations that can help slow the factors driving climate migration and prepare for expected migration flows, including:

  1. Reducing global emissions and making every effort to meet the temperature goals of the Paris Agreement.
  2. Embedding internal climate migration in far-sighted green, resilient, and inclusive development planning.
  3. Preparing for each phase of migration, so that internal climate migration as an adaptation strategy can result in positive development outcomes.
  4. Investing in better understanding of the drivers of internal climate migration to inform well-targeted policies.

current affairs

Insta Curious:

For nearly three decades the UN has been bringing together almost every country on earth for global climate summits – called COPs – which stands for ‘Conference of the Parties’. Where will COP26 be held? What is the agenda? Reference: read this.

Sources: the Hindu.

Facts for Prelims:

Climate Action and Finance Mobilization Dialogue (CAFMD):

This was one of the main tracks of the U.S.-India Agenda 2030 Partnership that President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced at the Leaders Summit on Climate in April 2021.

  • It was launched recently.
  • It will provide both India and the United States an opportunity to renew the collaborations on climate change while also addressing the financial aspects.
  • It will deliver climate finance primarily as grants and concessional finance, as envisaged under the Paris Agreement for strengthening the climate action.

 

current affairs

 

 

T+1 settlement system:

Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has offered T+1 settlement system for stock Market exchanges. If the stock exchange agrees to the proposal, investors will get money for shares they sold or bought in their accounts faster, and in a safer and risk-free environment.

What Is T+1 (T+2, T+3) cycles?

T+1 (T+2, T+3) are abbreviations that refer to the settlement date of security transactions.

  • The “T” stands for transaction date, which is the day the transaction takes place.
  • The numbers 1, 2, or 3 denote how many days after the transaction date the settlement—or the transfer of money and security ownership—takes place.
  • Stocks and mutual funds are usually T+1 and bonds and money market funds vary among T+1, T+2, and T+3.

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