Major News and Events of 08 December 2015
What Happened on 08 December 2015
Sushma leaves for Pakistan to attend 2-day Heart of Asia Summit, Islamabad under High Alert
Ex top Pak diplomat warns of US Aid being used against India
TIFR says India's Astrosat has beaten NASA
India-China wants Global Warming Cap at 1.5°C with Global Carbon Budget Allocation
Iran-India likely to seal deal on US$ 4.5 Billion Undersea Gas Pipeline
RBI Gov Rajan assures US Investors of India achieving Targeted Goals on GST Optimism
Congress Prez Sonia and VP Rahul Gandhi to appear before Court on National Herald Case on Dec 19
Parliamentary Committee favours Integration of Anti Corruption Wing and CVC under Lokpal's Control
L Sarita Devi, India’s ace woman boxer and Asian Games bronze medalist in the 60kg category, registered two successive victories in the training-cum-competition assignment in Qian'an city of China, thereby making a superb comeback after her 1 year ban. Sarita Devi was banned by International Boxing Association (AIBA) for her emotional outburst and refusal to accept bronze medal at Asian Games prize distribution podium last year after a controversial decision against her by the referee in the semi-final match. Sarita defeated You Ji 3-0 yesterday. Other Indian boxers who faired well yesterday include Pinki Jangra (51kg), Vikas Krishan (75kg), and Kuldeep Singh (81kg).
External affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj left for her 2-days Pakistan visit today afternoon to attend Regional Security Conference or “Heart of Asia” summit in Islamabad, which will host 14 countries, 17 donor countries, and around 12 organisations to discuss on stabilization of Afghanistan. With the dignitaries all set to reach Pakistan’s capital today, Islamabad has been put on high alert and Pakistan PM chaired a meeting with his civil and top security officials. National Security Advisor of Pakistan, Sartaj Aziz, vouched for strengthening peace and security in Afghanistan and called for using Heart of Asia platform to promote regional economic cooperation. US today welcomed Indo-Pak NSA level meet in Bangkok.
Husain Haqqani, ex Ambassador of Pakistan to the US, has warned of a possible escalation of conflict in South Asia owing to the recent US-Pakistan nuclear deal consideration by Obama administration along with selling decision of US-made F-16 Fighting Falcon, attack helicopters, missiles and other equipment to Pakistan. Haqqani pointed out that these equipment will be counterproductive in the sense that instead of being used for fighting against the “Islamist extremists”, they will be used against India. He cited lack of will rather than lack of weapons as the main reason for Pakistan government’s failure to control jihadists and domestic enemies.
Science and Technology
Tata Institute of Fundamental Research’s scientists have opined that Astrosat’s (first space observatory of India) Large Area Xenon Proportional Counters (LAXPC) has been successful in generation of good data, which when compared with the other similar instruments is better by a factor of 5. SP Trivedi, Director of TIFR, has said that LAXPC instrument (created by TIFR Professor JS Yadav) is best suited for explorations of extreme condition and it has scored better than NASA’s similar mission known as Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer /Proportional Counter Array (RXTE/PCA). 3 units of Astrosat’s LAXPC are located over an area of 8,000 cm square and have aggregate mass of 414 kg.
Science and Technology
With UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon reminding more than 150 diplomats during UN Climate Change Conference in Paris (COP21) about a “climate catastrophe” waiting to happen and their collective decision likely to affect ages to come, all the countries more or less agreed to keep global warming at 1.5°C level. While accepting the concept, India and China have stressed upon the need for the developed nations to own their historical responsibility in degradation of nature during their growth phase and therefore the need of differentiation. India-China also emphasized on need of equitable carbon budget distribution, which was referred by PM Modi as “climate justice”. Environment minister Prakash Javadekar called for protection of carbon space for developing countries along with imposition of 1.5°C target.
During World Energy Policy Summit 2015 (taking place in New Delhi, India, from December 7 to 8), Managing Director of Iran’s state-owned National Iranian Gas Export Company (NIGEC) said that finalization of an agreement on 1,400 km South Asia Gas Enterprise (SAGE) pipeline project is on the cards. Sources say $4.5-billion undersea gas pipeline between India and Iran is all set to be finalized soon and will transport 31.1 million standard cubic metres of gas from Iran’s Chabahar and Oman’s Ra’s al Jifan to Gujarat’s Porbandar, with the possibility of future extension to Mumbai. Reports say the pipeline will bypass exclusive economic zone of Pakistan.
In an event organised by the US India Business Council (USIBC) in New York, Raghuram Rajan (Governor of Reserve Bank of India) told American financial institutional investors that India is focusing on inflation as well as fiscal consolidation, which will consequently help the country reach targeted goals. During the interactive session, RBI Gov also expressed his optimism on the passage of GST, leading to broadening of tax base, improvement in tax collection, and formation of a unified tax base. Rajan also emphasized on the need of cleaning up banks, especially their NPAs, for providing stakeholders more proactive role in resolution process and banks more power in greater recovery of money.
A Delhi Court has exempted Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi to appear before the court for a day and asked to appear on December 19 regarding the 'National Herald' cheating and misappropriation case. Others who were asked to appear before court are Moti Lal Vora, Suman Dubey, Sam Pitroda, and Oscar Fernandes. BJP leader Dr Subramanian Swamy, complainant of the case, said he’s satisfied with the judgement. Congress members raised this issue in both houses of the parliament today and called it “vendetta politics”, leading to repeated adjournments. Sonia Gandhi, while interacting with the media, said she is the daughter-in-law of ex-PM Indira Gandhi and is not afraid or disturbed. BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said that law is same for both Sonia Gandhi and common people. Parliamentary Affairs Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu called Congress’s parliamentary disruption “unfair and undemocratic”.
A Parliamentary Committee yesterday recommended integration of Central Bureau of Investigation’s anti-corruption wing and Central Vigilance Commission and making it work under the direct control and command of the Lokpal for dealing with the cases related to corruption. Raison d'être cited by the committee for such recommendation is overlapping of functions. The concerned committee also suggested inclusion of Lok Sabha’s largest opposition party’s leader in the selection panel for choosing chairperson as well as members of Lokpal. Congress MP E M Sudarsana Natchiappan headed Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice also felt it unnecessary to publicly disclose liabilities and assets of public servants.