Current Affairs, News & Facts of 30 Jun 2016

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  • Veteran Naga leader Isak Chisi Swu passes away

    Isak Chisi Swu, co-founder of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland-Isak-Muivah (NSCN-IM)  passed away in Delhi. He was 86. Swu, along with Thuingaleng Muivah and S S Khaplang, raised the banner of sovereignty for Greater Nagalim outside of India and as Naga leader he had led one of the worst insurgencies in the North-East India for almost three decades.

    Veteran Naga leader Isak Chisi Swu passes away

    Isak Chisi Swu (1929-2016) :

    He was a political science graduate from St. Anthony's College, Shillong. He joined the underground outfit, Naga National Council (NNC) in 1950 and served as its foreign secretary. 

    This organisation formed by of Angami Zapu Phizo fought for the secession of Nagaland from India. Swu later went on to become the vice president of NNC. 

    In 1980 a  faction led by Isak, Muviah and SS Khaplang broke away from NNC to form the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN), which continued the secessionist activities.

    Nationalist Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN) :

    Isak Chishi Swu along with Thuingaleng Muivah had formed the NSCN in 1980 opposing the Shillong Accord signed by the then Naga National Council (NNC) with the Government of India. 

    The main goal of the NSCN is to establish a sovereign Christian state, "Nagalim", which would consist of all the areas inhabited by the Naga people in Northeast India and Northwest Myanmar.

    NSCN (IM) has been accused of indulging in killings, extortion and other subversive activities in the North East region It has been declared as a terrorist organisation in India under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.

    NSCN-IM had signed a framework agreement with the government of India in 2015  to find a permanent solution to the vexed Naga issue. Swu is considered as the main person behind the pact. 

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  • Anti-submarine torpedo Varunastra inducted in Navy

    Anti-submarine torpedo Varunastra inducted in NavyIndigenously-built heavyweight anti-submarine torpedo Varunastra has been successfully inducted in the navy, making India one of the eight countries to have the capability to design and build such a system.

    Facts about Varunastra :

    It has been developed by Naval Science and Technological Laboratory (NSTL), a premier laboratory of DRDO. Weighing around 1.25 tonnes, it can carry about 250 kg of explosives at a speed of around 40 nautical miles an hour.

    • The Varunastra torpedo has been developed by Naval Science and Technological Laboratory (NSTL), a premier laboratory of DRDO. It weighs around 1.25 tonnes and carries about 250 kg of explosives at a speed of around 40 nautical miles an hour. 
    • It has almost 95 per cent indigenous content. It is capable of targeting stealthy and quiet submarines, both in deep and littoral waters in intense counter-measure environment. 
    • Varunastra has been designed with latest technologies such as high-speed and long endurance propulsion, software driven intelligence, conformal array acoustic homing with wide look angle and advanced digital signal processing.
    • It has a GPS-based locating aid, a unique feature in contemporary torpedoes in the world. It is also equipped with advanced autonomous guidance algorithms with low drift navigational aids, insensitive warhead which can operate in various combat scenarios.

    Torpedo: It is a self-propelled weapon with an explosive warhead. It is launched above or below the water surface and propelled underwater towards a target. It is designed to detonate either on contact with its target or in proximity to it.

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  • Cabinet approves MoU between India and Tanzania 

    Cabinet approves MoU between India and Tanzania The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Tanzania for bilateral cooperation in water resources management and development.

    The areas of enhanced cooperation include techniques in water harvesting, surface and groundwater management and development and aquifer recharge. 

    Provisions in the MoU

    Collaboration and sharing of expertise on the areas mutually agreed will benefit the country in techniques in water harvesting, water conservation, surface and groundwater management and development, and aquifer recharge.

    Exchange of experts, organization of training programs, study tours and other such activities including demonstrative pilot studies to build capacities. A Joint Working Group between both countries will be formed to monitor the activities under the MoU.

    Background

    • The Union Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation has been envisaging bilateral cooperation with other countries in water resources development and management.  
    • These are mainly through sharing of technical and policy expertise, conducting of workshops, scientific, technical symposia and training courses, study tours and exchange of experts.
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  • 29 June: National Statistics Day celebrated

    The National Statistics Day is celebrated every year on June 29 to mark the birth anniversary of renowned statistician Prof. P.C. Mahalanobis and create public awareness among people about the importance of statistics in daily life and in the process of planning and development. Year 2016 marks the tenth edition of National Statistics Day.

    National Statistics Day, 2016 theme : “Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare”.

    About Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis :

    National Statistics Day celebratedBorn on 29 June 1893. He is best remembered for the Mahalanobis distance, a statistical measure. He founded the Indian Statistical Institute, and contributed to the design of large-scale sample surveys.

    He had made pioneering studies in anthropometry in India. He was also a member of the Planning Commission (PC) from 1955 to 1967.

    His variant of Wassily Leontief's Input-output model, the Mahalanobis model, was employed in the Second Five Year Plan.

    This plan had encouraged the development of heavy industry in India and later became known as the Mahalanobis model or Basic Industry strategy of economic growth.

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  • Cabinet panel approves three highway projects

    Cabinet panel approves three highway projectsThe Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on Wednesday approved three highway projects worth Rs 5,963 crore. The projects include four laning of Aurangabad-Telwadi section of NH-211 (87 km) in Maharashtra, four laning of Angul-Sambalpur Section of NH-42 (151 km) in Odisha and four laning of Phagwara-Rupnagar Section of NH-344A (80 km) in Punjab.

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  • Supreme Court Cannot Exercise Power Of Pardon Vested With President, Governor

    Supreme Court Cannot Exercise Power Of Pardon Vested With President, GovernorA bench of justices Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh said that the constitutional power of the executive to grant pardon to convicts cannot be exercised by the apex court unless there is a violation of fundamental rights.

    There was an argument that when a pardon or remission can be given under Article 72 (by President) or 161 (by Governor)  by the constitutional authority, that why  similar power of Supreme Court under Article 32 of the Constitution can not be invoked.

    Article 32 of the Indian constitution which grants Supreme Court the authority to pardon or remission, can be only invoked when there is violation of any fundamental right or where the Court takes up certain grievance which falls in the realm of public interest litigation.

    The observation came on the pleas of some persons convicted under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act who were seeking grant of remission of their 10-year sentence as the relief was not available to them under the New Punjab Jail Manual of 1996.

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  • Up to 4.8 million South Sudanese face severe food shortages: UN

    Up to 4.8 million South Sudanese face severe food shortages: UNAccording to report published by UN agencies, up to 4.8 million people in South Sudan face severe food shortages in coming months, the highest level since a conflict erupted between government troops and a newly formed rebel group.

    Nearly 70,000 people have fled to nearby towns while about 10,000 of them have taken shelter at a United Nations base in the area, where streams of displaced continue to arrive. 

    The U.N. World Food Programme, expected to assist 3.3 million people this year with emergency food assistance, life-saving nutrition support and other aid but the continued clashes and rains at this time of year adds to the challenge of supplying those in need.

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