1) Trump signs executive order against hiring H1B visa holders for federal contracts:
President Donald Trump signed an executive order preventing federal agencies from contracting or subcontracting foreign workers mainly those on H-1B visa from hiring.
- The H-1B visa category covers individuals who work in a specialised occupation, engage in cooperative research and development projects administered by the US Department of Defense or fashion models that have national or international acclaim and recognition.
- The H-1B is most well known as a visa for skilled tech workers, health care and media also use these visas.
- According to USCIS, the H-2B program allows US employers or agents to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary non-agricultural jobs.
- They generally apply to seasonal workers in industries like landscaping, forestry, hospitality and construction.
- The J-1 visa is an exchange visitor visa for individuals approved to participate in work and study based exchange visitor programs in the United States.
- This includes interns, trainees, teachers, camp counselors, pairs and participants in summer work travel programs.
- The L1 Visa is reserved for managerial or executive professionals transferring to the US, from their company, or a subsidiary of it.
- Within the L1 Visa, there are two subsidiary types of visas:-
- L1A visa for managers and executives.
- L1B visa for those with specialized knowledge.
Reason behind it:-
- The Trump’s election promise.
- COVID uncertainties
- Sudden rise in unemployment: the ongoing pandemic has significantly disrupted Americans’ livelihoods, to the extent that the overall unemployment rate quadrupled between february and may 2020 to a little over 13%.
Impact on India:-
1) Indian IT companies are amongst the biggest beneficiaries of the US H-1B visa regime and have cornered a share of the total number of visas issued each year. India’s IT services exports to the U.S have been important element for bilateral economic trade.
2) Highly skilled workers lost their jobs
3) Newer opportunities for Indian high skilled workers in the IT sector in other countries outside the US will be explored.
4) This move may gain for better growth of the Indian tech industry. These would in turn benefit innovation, R&D for nurturing the growing start-up sector in India.
5) Most of the companies have become capable of handling their work remotely in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. This has provided resilience to the Indian tech sector against international mobility restrictions.
2) GRANTING OF PERMANENT COMMISSION TO WOMEN OFFICERS IN INDIAN ARMY:-
Government instructed to submit their application forms and other related documents of women officers who have joined the Indian Army through the Women Special Entry Scheme (WSES) and Short Service Commission Women (SSCW) for Permanent Commission (PC) in Indian Army.
- The induction of women officers in the Army started in 1992.
- They were commissioned for a period of five years in certain chosen streams such as Army Education Corps, Corps of Signals, Intelligence Corps, and Corps of Engineers.
- Recruits under the Women Special Entry Scheme (WSES) had a shorter pre-commission training period than their male counterparts who were commissioned under the Short Service Commission (SSC) scheme.
- In 2006, the WSES scheme was replaced with the SSC scheme, which was extended to women officers. They were commissioned for a period of 10 years, extendable up to 14 years.
- Serving WSES officers were given the option to move to the new SSC scheme or to continue under the erstwhile WSES.
- They were to be, however, restricted to roles in streams specified earlier — which excluded combat arms such as infantry and armoured corps.
- Granting PC in 10 streams have removed the discrimination on the basis of years and bringing them on a par with male officers.
- So far role of the women was confined to serve in staff appointments .But this move has increased the role of women officers, which is the most significant and far-reaching aspect of the judgment.
- It means that women officers will be eligible to the posts of all the command appointments at par with male officers, which would open avenues for further promotions to higher ranks for women.
- It also means that in junior ranks and career courses, women officers would be attending the same training courses and tenanting critical appointments, which are necessary for higher promotions.
3) Remote Arunachal corner gets 2G network through satellite:-
- The Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has recently launched its mobile 2G services in the inaccessible area Vijaynagar(bordered with Myanmar) in Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh.
- The vijaynagar is surrounded on three sides by Myanmar and the other side by the Namdapha National Park.
- The state government has been putting in all efforts to connect the vijaynagar with Miao under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana.
- The ambitious 157.56 km-long road project has, however, been delayed due to realignment and diversion of the road to avoid the Namdapha Tiger Reserve.
- Vijaynagar was “discovered” by the Assam Rifles during an expedition in 1961 led by its Inspector-General A.S. Guraya.
- He named the valley after his son Vijay.
- Vijaynagar is inhabited sparsely by the Lishu community
4) Pakistan’s new political map claims J&K, Ladakh, parts of Gujarat:-
- A new political map released by Pakistan claims that Indian territories of Jammu and Kashmir, parts of Ladakh and parts of western Gujarat – Junagadh, Sir Creek and Manavadar as Pakistan territories.
- This move comes in the backdrop of “a year ago India’s Parliament revoking Article 370”.
- By showing Junagadh (Gujarat) as a part of Pakistan, it raises the question on 1948 plebiscite.
- Junagarh was a princely state which had a majority of Hindus but ruled by a Muslim ruler.
- It had already signed the pact with Pakistan to be a part of the Pakistan territory. However, India firmly believed in the will of the people for such decision.
- On 26 October, the Nawab and his family fled to Pakistan following clashes with Indian troops. Before leaving, the Nawab had emptied the state treasury.
- The Dewan of Junagadh, Sir Shah Nawaz Bhutto, the father of the more famous Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, decided to invite the Government of India to intervene.
- The government of India accepted the invitation of the Dewan to intervene.
- A plebiscite was conducted in February 1948, which went almost unanimously in favor of accession to India.
- Junagadh became a part of the Indian state.
5) 24 million may drop out of school due to pandemic: UN Almost 24 million children are at risk of not returning to school next year due to the economic fallout of the corona virus pandemic, according to the United Nation’s policy brief on the pandemic’s impact on education, released recently.
- The educational financing gap is likely to increase by one third according to the United Nation’s policy.
- Currently, more than 1.6 billion learners across the world have been affected by the disruption of the education system.
- Girls and young women are likely to be disproportionately affected as school closures make them more vulnerable to child marriage, early pregnancy, and gender based violence.
- For those who do not drop out of school, learning losses could be severely affected.