Sarat Chandra IAS Academy

Current Affairs of 31st October -2020


General Studies-3:

Issues relating to Indian Economy, Development and Planning

  1. Tariff protection to promote local manufacturing
  2. PLI scheme

Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation

  1. The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB)

Issues of buffer stocks and food security

  1. NAFED to import onions

General Studies-1

Indian Heritage and Culture

  1. Stone idol of Sun God
  2. Nolamba Kings

General Studies-2

Bilateral, regional and agreements involving India

  1. Malabar Naval Exercise
  2. Agreement for electronic exchange of postal data

International Relations

  1. Knife attack in France


1)Tariff protection to promote local manufacturing:

Why in news?

Any tariff protection to promote local manufacturing in India will come with an inbuilt sunset clause, NITI Aayog Vice­Chairman Rajiv Kumar said on Friday, asserting that the country’s self-reliance mission must not be equated to it becoming a ‘protectionist’ and closed economy.

  • The government is set to extend the production linked incentive (PLI) scheme for manufacturing pharmaceuticals, medical devices and electronics announced under the AtmaNirbhar Bharat package to six more sectors.
  • To pursue self-reliance; our domestic entrepreneurs the best situations.
  • While attracting FDI, also repose our faith and trust in those who have already invested in India.
  • To recognize them by giving much better logistics, infrastructure and more flexibility in the use of land and labor.
  • PLI schemes will soon become valid for ‘nine to 10’ sectors from four at present, this is meant to incentivize investors already in the country to put up globally comparable capacities in scale and competitiveness.
  • India’s efforts towards self-reliance were not dissimilar to what other nations are doing to insulate themselves from global supply chain shocks and revive the economy.
  • “But it will be done in a global context. It will be done with India remaining open and trying to regain its share in global and regional production chains, it will be done with respect to rule bound multilateral trading orders.
  • It will not imply in any sense any form of isolation, closed economy or protectionism, the country will do its best to increase the share of trade in its gross domestic product (GDP).
  • “If there is any support given to domestic enterprises, it will all be targeted towards creating globally competitive capacities and any support that we give them through tariffs would have an in­built sunset clause. I wanted to emphasise India’s commitment to a Global economy with open order

What is PLI scheme?

As a part of the National Policy on Electronics, the IT ministry had notified the PLI scheme on April 1 this year.

  • The scheme will, on one hand, attract big foreign investment in the sector, while also encouraging domestic mobile phone makers to expand their units and presence in India.
  • It would give incentives of 4-6 per cent to electronics companies which manufacture mobile phones and other electronic components.
  • A/c to the scheme, companies that make mobile phones which sell for Rs 15,000 or more will get an incentive of up to 6 per cent on incremental sales of all such mobile phones made in India.
  • In the same category, companies which are owned by Indian nationals and make such mobile phones, the incentive has been kept at Rs 200 crore for the next four years.


2) Stone idol of Sun God:

Why in news?

  • A stone idol of sun God (surya), dated back to 10th century, was found in the farm land of Harijan Vannuruppa at Kalagodu village, in Gummagutta mandal of Anantapur district, Andhra Pradesh
  • The idol belonged to the period of the Nolamba Kings, who ruled the region (large parts of Karnataka and some years in Andhra Pradesh now) for over 300 years.

Nolamba Kings:

  • The Nolambas were a relatively minor South Indian dynasty compared to the big guns; the Cholas, Chalukyas, the Vijaynagara empire etc. They ruled from 735 to 1052 A.D.
  • Their political influence extended from their capital Hemavati in a broad swathe from the southwest to the southeast; with parts of modern eastern Karnataka, western Andhra Pradesh and northern Tamil Nadu.
  • The remnants of their Shaivite (Shiva-worshipper) kingdom is in a village Hemavati, close to Hindupur; from Penukonde to Anantpur.
  • They ruled over the Nolambapadi which normally included Tumkur, Chitradurg and Kolar, Bellary and Bangalore area.
  • In the tenth century their kingdom included the Salem and South Arcot districts also. Mangala is heard of as the first king of this dynasty according to the Hemavati inscriptions.


3) AITUC turns 100:

Why in news?

  • Country’s first national trade union, Union Congress turns, 100 on 31 Oct


  • A trade union can be defined as an organised association of workers in a trade or profession, formed to further their rights and interests.
  • In India, Trade Unions in India are registered under the Trade Union Act (1926).
  • Trade unions are interested in the economic and social welfare of the workers.
  • Labour unions may also have political interests in the larger society.


  • AITUC, the oldest trade union federation in India was set up in 1920.
  • It was founded by Lala Lajpat Rai, Joseph Baptista, N.M Joshi and Diwan Chaman Lall. Lajpat Rai was elected the first president of AITUC.

Factors that influenced the growth of the movement:

  • Spiralling prices during War and the mass entrenchment of workers that followed it led to low living standards.
  • Also, the wretched working conditions added to their woes. Hence, they sought collective bargaining power through unionisation.
  • Development of Home Rule, the emergence of Gandhian leadership and the socio-political conditions led to the nationalist leadership taking interest in the worker’s plight.
  • Workers, in turn, was looking for professional leadership and guidance.
  • Russian revolution and other international developments (like setting up of International Labour Organization in 1919) boosted their morale.


4) Malabar naval exercise:

Why in news?

Australia to join navies of India, U.S., Japan in Bay of Bengal

  • The first phase of the Malabar Naval exercise with Australia, Japan and the U.S. is scheduled to be held next week off the Visakhapatnam coast.
  • This is the first time Australia will be joining the exercise after 2007 and it will bring all four countries of the Quadrilateral grouping together for military games.
  • More than three years after Canberra’s request to join the exercise, last week India announced that the Australian Navy would participate in Malabar 2020.
  • “Phase 1 of the Exercise Malabar 2020 involving participation by Indian Navy, United States Navy, Japan Maritime Self Defence Force, and Royal Australian Navy is set to commence off Vishakhapatnam in Bay of Bengal from November 3 to 6
  • The second phase is scheduled to be held from November 17 to 20 in the Arabian Sea
    Malabar Exercise
  • Malabar began as a bilateral exercise between India and the U.S. in 1992 and became trilateral in 2015 with the addition of Japan


5) NAFED to import onions:

  • The central cooperative, National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation Of India Limited, will soon begin importing onions in a bid to tame soaring prices, Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Piyush Goyal said on Friday.
  • In the week since the Centre imposed stock limits, invoking the provisions of the newly amended Essential Commodities Act, the all India average retail price of onions has continued to rise, increasing by ?10 to almost ?66 per kg
  • He expressed hope that the arrival of the new kharif crop next month would also help to cool down prices.
  • Although NAFED had created a buffer stock of on lakh tonnes from the Rabi crop, from which it has been releasing stock into retail markets directly and through State governments, it has already disposed of 40%, and another 25% is expected to be lost to damp and rot.
  • Onions are already being bought from Egypt, Afghanistan and Turkey by private traders at market rates, with the Directorate General of Foreign Trade facilitating import by waiving quarantine and fumigation requirements.
  • With regard to potatoes, 30,000 tonnes have been imported from Bhutan.



Why in news?

Ministry of Tourism’s Dekho Apna Desh Webinar series has organized a webinar titled: “Bundi: Architectural Heritage of a Forgotten Rajput Capital” Bundi is an erstwhile capital of Hada (Chauhan), Rajput province, located in South- Eastern Rajasthan

  • Also called as city of stepwells, blue city and chotti kasha
  • Choti kashi because of presence of over hundred temples within

Temple styles of bundi:

  • Classical Nagara style
  • Haveli with classical nagram style

Jain temples

  • Fourth style is raised elevated temple
  • Rani ki Baori also known as queens stepwells constructed by Rani Nathavati ji


7) Agreement for electronic exchange of postal data:

  • India post and United States postal service agreement
  • Agreement for electronic exchange of postal data
  • Objective is to facilitate ease of exports for small and large exporters


8) Knife Attack in France:

Why in news?

  • The knife attack in the southern French city of Nice on Thursday that killed three people and injured many more has left the country, which has barely recovered from the beheading of a schoolteacher in a Paris suburb by an 18-year-old Chechen two weeks ago, in shock and pain.
  • France, home to Europe’s largest Muslim community, has particularly been hit by Islamist terrorism in recent years.
  • Thursday’s incident, which occurred in the context of the controversy over satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo’s decision to republish Prophet Mohammed’s caricatures, is the latest in a series of terror attacks in the country in the last eight years that have killed more than 200.
  • France’s agony and anger are understandable and its leaders have repeatedly said they would not give in to threats from terrorists. But the tragic reality is that jihadists continue to strike, taking innocent lives.
  • Each time, it serves as a reminder that neither the government’s preventive measures that include credible intelligence gathering and deradicalisation efforts, nor its combative postures work in ending this terror run.
  • Needless to say, these attacks are driving a wedge between France’s already polarized communities, feeding into the far-right Islamophobic political narrative.

Need for a Counter Terrorism Strategy

  • An implacable security response is an imperative of any counter-terrorism strategy.
  • But it is important to understand the enemy.
  • The Islamist terrorists, those who are inspired by the ideology of organisations such as al-Qaeda and the Islamic State, see the world as an arena of a clash of civilisations.
  • Driven by a perverted interpretation of religion, they are ready to unleash violence against anybody who does not subscribe to their worldview.
  • The fight against jihadists — a minuscule minority among the world’s Muslims but a potent threat to societies given their embrace of violence and a vicious ideology — should be mindful of not allowing them to sow discord on the basis of religious identities.


  • This is the biggest challenge before the French President, Emmanuel Macron.
  • Mr. Macron, who earlier this month said “Islam is in crisis”, should lead a united response to terrorism that does not posit French values against any belief system.
  • The fight is for civilizational values, for democracy, secularism, freedom, and equality against radical Islamism, a medieval ideology that has equipped itself with modern weapons.
  • It is important for the world that France wins this fight.

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