UPSC

13 February 2020 Current Affairs for UPSC IAS Exam

Read Daily Current Affairs of 13th February 2020 for UPSC Civil Services (IAS) Prelims and Mains Exam 2020

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Current Affairs Notes 12th February 2020 UPSC IAS

Read Current Affairs Notes of 13th February 2020 for UPSC Civil Services Prelims and Mains Examination 2020. Highlighting all National and International contemporary issues important from the exam point of view.

GS-2, Prelims

Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

Kerala imposes Rs 13 price cap on bottled water

  • Kerala has made bottled drinking water an essential commodity and has fixed a ceiling of Rs 13 per litre.
  • Current retail price is Rs 20.
  • The government made these standards mandatory for all brands of bottled water and said that this would force unauthorized manufacturers to shut shop.
  • In 2018, the government had called a meeting of bottled water manufacturers and it was decided to bring down the price to Rs 12àdecision was not implemented due to opposition from traders and some manufacturers.
  • The Kerala government sells a litre of bottled water at Rs 10 through a subsidiary of the Kerala Water Authority.
  • The price ceiling has come in place because the public felt that the bottled water manufacturers were fleecing customers with high prices.

GS-2, Prelims

Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

Bill to regulate pesticide business gets green light

  • The Union Cabinet approved the Pesticides Management Bill, 2020, which will:
    • Regulate the business of pesticides
    • Compensate farmers in case of losses from the use of spurious agrochemicals
  • Government is of the view that the Insecticides Act of 1968, which are regulating the pesticide business, have now become age-old and need rewriting.
  • The data will be provided in open source in all languages so the farmers will have access to all information and will thus be empowered.
  • The draft of this bill was released by the Centre in February 2018àkey proposal to raise penalties on the sale of prohibited or spurious pesticides to Rs 50 lakh and upto five years’ imprisonmentàunclear whether the provision has been retained in the latest version.
  • The Centre for Science and Environment has in 2018 criticised the Bill by saying that the draft provides inadequate representation to Statesàthey should have a say as they better understand the agro-ecological climate, environment and soil conditions of their areas.

GS-3, Prelims

Topic: Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

Cabinet clears Major Ports Authority Bill

  • Union Cabinet approved the Major Ports Authority Bill, 2020àwill be introduced in the ongoing session of Parliament.
  • It will replace the existing regulations under a 1963 law.
  • Disputes between the private companies and PPP have been coming up and the existing law has no provisions to deal with them. So, the new law will give a boost to the 12 major ports.
  • The new law will also help in improving infrastructure.

GS-2, Prelims

Topic: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation/India and its neighbourhood- relations.

India amends tax-pact with Sri Lanka

  • The double taxation avoidance agreement between India and Sri Lanka has been amended.
  • Union Cabinet has approved the Signing and Ratification of the Protocol amending the Agreement between both the countries for the avoidance of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income.
  • The new changes in the Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA), 2013 would enable the government to blunt tax evasion.
  • DTAA was signed on January 22, 2013.

GS-3, Prelims

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

Inflation climbs, industrial output contracts yet again

  • A day after FM listed recovery in industrial output as one of the “green shoots” in the economy, government data showed that industrial output contracted again in December 2019, retail inflation surged to an almost six-year high of 7.59%.
  • This inflation rate is the highest since NDA government came to power.
  • Index of Industrial Production (IIP) recorded a negative growth of 0.03% in December 2019 as compared to December 2018.
  • Contraction largely occurred in:
    • Manufacturing sector
    • Production of capital goods
    • Electricity sector
  • Mining sector saw a growth of 5.4%.
  • NSO’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) dataàretail inflation surged from 7.35% in December 2019 to 7.59% in January 2020àmostly due to costly food items.

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