Current Affairs : November 24, 2011

Shoes thrown at others, Pawar first to be assaulted

  • Hitherto, prominent personalities have had footwear thrown at them but without contact being made. Union Agriculture Minister is the first dignitary to be assaulted. Pawar was slapped by a turbaned Sikh man, Mr. Harvinder Singh, who also took out his Kirpan when security guards tried to overpower him and whisk him away. He was later arrested.

NASA to launch mission on Mars

  • NASA’s mission on Mars will be launched on November 26, 2011 from Florida in USA to detect the habitable environment on Mars. The mission “Curiosity” the Mars rover, will assess whether the red planet has potential of habitat for Maritian life. Whether the life had existed on Mars is an open question that this mission by itself is not designed to answer. Curiosity does not carry experiment to detect active processor that would signify present day biological metabolism nor does it have the ability to image micro organisms or their fossil equivalent. However, if this mission finds the field type gale-type crater or Mars has had conditions favourable for habitality and for preserving evidence about life, those findings can shape future missions to bring the samples on earth. The cost of this mission is USD 2.5 billion.

Nagaland Govt is not aware of any ‘Supra State Body’: CM Rio

  • Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio held that he is not aware of any Supra State Body being created for Naga inhabited areas in other neighbouring states like Assam, Arunachal and Manipur. He expressed ignorance of any such development and stated that the State Government does not have any knowledge of a Supra State Body and neither the Centre nor the civil societies has given any information to the State Government about such a development.

Indian housemaids in Gulf countries being exploited

  • Indian Missions had been receiving complaints from women workers in gulf countries, particularly housemaids, about non-payment of salaries, long working hours, inadequate living conditions, physical harassment, refusal of leave or exit/re-entry permits and final exit visa etc. Government has taken various measures for protecting the safety and welfare of women migrant workers of the ECR (Emigration Check Required) category who immigrate to 17 notified (ECR) countries.
  1. Age restriction of 30 years has been made mandatory in respect of all such women emigrants
  2. It has been provided that employment contract must be duly attested by the Indian Missions in respect of all such women
  3. Women household workers are allowed to emigrate after the Indian mission had attested the identity of foreign employer and terms and conditions of contract
  4. A pre-paid mobile facility must be provided by the employer to every woman household worker.
  5. If the Foreign Employer recruits the worker directly, he is required to deposit a security of $2500 with the Indian Mission.
  6. The Ministry has set up the Overseas Workers Resource Centre (OWRC) with a 24×7 Helpline to enable emigrant workers/prospective emigrants including women to obtain information on all emigration related matters and to seek redressal of their complaints.
  7. An Indian Community Welfare Fund has been established in all the Indian Embassies/ Missions including all ECR countries. Financial assistance is provided by the Indian Missions out of this fund to all Indian emigrants who are stranded and are in need of assistance.

India inks agreement with EAG to counter terrorist financing

  • India signed an agreement with the Eurasian Group (EAG) to inter-alia enhance cooperation in the areas of money laundering and terrorist financing. The Cabinet had approved the agreement earlier this month. A six-member Indian delegation led by Dr Mathew is attending the 15th Plenary Meeting of the Eurasian Group (EAG) on Combating Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism, being held in China. The EAG is a Financial Action Task Force (FATF) styled regional body with 9 members including India, Russia and China and 29 observers of which 12 are countries and 17 are international organisations. India was accorded membership in the EAG in December 2010. There are 9 such regional bodies spread across the world.

Top Maoist ”Kishenji” shot dead in fierce encounter

  • Dreaded Maoist leader Koteshwar Rao alias Kishenji killed in a fierce encounter with the joint forces in the dense Burishol forest under Jamboni Police Station of West Midnapore district.

‘BCE’ instead of ‘BC’?

  • In Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh’s Higher Education Minister Laxmikant Sharma informed the State Assembly that a committee of academicians has examined a suggestion to employ Before the Common Era (BCE) and Common Era (CE) – in keeping with the Constitution’s secular character – instead of Before Christ (BC) and Anno Domini (AD).

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