The CLAT Blog

Current Affairs- April 2017

Hello there! This is the last post in series of Current Affairs Compendiums.

As far as we know, CLAT paper-drafters have looked beyond mid-April while questioning current affairs. Please revise all the compendiums and nail that paper!

GOOD LUCK from team


1. Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina accorded ceremonial welcome at Rashtrapati Bhavan

  • In a special gesture on Friday, Mr. Modi personally received his Bangladeshi counterpart at the airport. Ms. Hasina is on a four-day official visit to India
  • This is her first bilateral visit to India in seven years. She last visited the country in January 2010.
  • Mr. Modi and Ms. Hasina will hold a bilateral summit on Saturday, following which over 20 agreements, including a civil nuclear and two memorandum of understanding (MoUs) on defence cooperation, are expected to be signed

2. Chenani-Nashri tunnel: PM Modi inaugurates India’s longest road tunnel in J&K

3. Yogi Adityanath govt bans strikes in UP universities, colleges under ESMA

  • An order from the Yogi Adityanath government in UP said that any strike in higher education institutions will remain banned “in public interest” for three months till 30 June under the stringent Essential Services Maintenance Act, 1968 (ESMA).
  • ESMA gives police the powers to arrest, without a warrant, anybody violating the Act’s provisions. The period has been chosen keeping in mind the busy academic calendar as a number of examinations are scheduled in these three months.

4. Geetha Johri becomes Gujarat’s first woman DGP

5. India Open champion PV Sindhu reaches career-best World No 2.

6. Mukta Dutta Tomar appointed India’s Ambassador to Germany

  • Tomar, a 1984 batch IFS officer is presently working as the Additional Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).
  • Earlier, Gurjit Singh was holding this post till in March 2017

7 .64th National Film Awards: Akshay Kumar wins best actor for Rustom, best Hindi      film is Neerja

8. Include Urdu in NEET 2018-19, Supreme Court directs government.

  • NEET 2017 will be held in 10 languages— Hindi, English, Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Odia and Kannada.
  • Since the exam is scheduled to be held in May 7, therefore Urdu will not be included this year.
  • This year, the government has introduced two criteria on age and attempt cap has students up in arms across nation. While the criteria was revised, final verdict on upper age limit will be out in July.

9. 2002 Gujarat riots probe: SC relieves SIT chief R.K. Raghavan

  • A Bench comprising Chief Justice J.S. Khehar and Justices D.Y.Chandrachud and S.K.Kaul considered the submission of senior advocate Harish Salve, who is assisting the court as an amicus curiae, that Mr. Raghavan be relieved from the duty of heading the SIT.
  • It also relieved another member K Venkatesam from the SIT and asked Mr. Malhotra to continue filing quarterly status report about the progress in the riots cases in the apex court.
  • The top court-appointed SIT has been probing nine major post-Godhra riots cases including the Naroda Gam riots case pertaining to the killing of eleven members of a community.

10. In a major development in Telangana today, state chief minister K Chandrashekhar Rao has today hiked reservations Scheduled Caste/Scheduled tribe and backward classes

 11. StayZilla founder Yogendra Vasupal granted bail.

  • StayZilla Co-Founder Yogendra Vasupal was today granted bail by the Madras High Court on a condition that he should deposit Rs 40 lakh with the court to establish bonafide intentions.
  • Jigsaw solutions, an advertising vendor, had lodged a complaint of dues worth Rs 1.69 crore owed by StayZilla for a period between March and May 2016. The company, which had raised $13 million in May, had filed up on February this year, promising a reboot.

12. The appointments of B. Venugopal and Sunita Sharma as managing directors of LIC

13. Chinese Grand  Prix held in Shanghai

  • Lewis Hamiliton from Mercedes wins, followed by Sebastian Vettel from Ferrari and Max Verstappen from Red Bull got the third position.

14. Women need not change their names in passport after marriage.

  • Indian women need not change their names in passports after their marriage, PM Modi said at the commemoration of the golden jubilee of Indian merchant chamber’s ladies wing.
  • Towards the end of 2016, the government had also made access for passports friendlier for divorced or separated women when the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) stopped the practice of asking for the name of the spouse.
  • A Parliamentary panel formed to look into the Passport Act 1967 and Passport Rules 1980, comprising officials from the Ministry of Women and Child Development, the MEA and the Central Passport Organisation, had suggested that the MEA not print details of a person’s father, mother or spouse in the passport.

15. Government pressure forced Air India to withdraw Ravindra Gaikwad’s flying ban

  • Pressure from the government forced Air India to withdraw its flying ban on Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad two weeks after he assaulted an airline staffer, according to highly placed sources of the national carrier.
  • “We had to withdraw the ban despite the fact that the MP did not apologise either to the airline or to our employees because of a government order,” a top Air India official said.
  • The ban on Gaikwad was revoked last Friday after a letter from the Ministry of Civil Aviation “advised” it to do so.
  • “In view of the apology tendered by Shri Gaikwad and the undertaking of good conduct given by him, the Air India and other airlines are advised to lift the ban imposed on him,”  ..

16. President Pranab Mukherjee clears GST Bill

  • President Pranab Mukherjee, gave his nod to the four supporting legislations related to the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill after it was passed by both the House of Parliament during the budget session, reported news agency PTI. GST was passed with four supporting amendments by the Rajya Sabha on April 6 without any amendments. The four draft bills – the central GST Bill, the integrated GST Bill, the Union territory GST Bill and the GST (Compensation to states) Bill – were cleared by the Rajya Sabha.
  • With clearance of the bill, it can be expected to be rolled out from July 1 as planned by ruling BJP. The Bill was passed with a unanimous consensus by the parties in Parliament except few opposition parties like TMC.

 17. Budget Session ends on a historic note; Lok Sabha passes 24 bills, Rajya Sabha passes 14.

  • The Budget Session started on 31st January and had a recess of 27 days before it reassembled on 9th March.
  • This was for the first time that the entire financial business relating to Budget was transacted before 31st March when the financial year ends.
  • Now, the government has the advantage of implementing the Budget proposals right from the beginning of the new financial year. Normally, this process used to begin in June or July.
  • It was also for the first time that an integrated Budget, in which the general Budget and the Rail Budget were combined, was presented and passed by both the Houses of Parliament much before the deadline.
  • But, the biggest highlight of the Budget Session was definitely passing of GST in both the Houses. Due to smart planning, back door meetings and  the cooperation of Congress, the government managed to get the GST Bill passed smoothly even in Rajya Sabha without any amendments even as it has no majority in the Upper House.
  • GST has been billed as one of the biggest economic reforms so far, which will change the entire structure of taxes in the country and make whole  of India as one market. Apart from the main GST Bill, three other enabling bills associated with GST which are necessary to implement it countrywide, were also unanimously passed by both the Houses. Now, the road is clear for the government to roll out GST as soon as possible.
  • Apart from the Finance Bill and the GST, it was also a big achievement for the government to get the Enemy Property Bill passed in Rajya Sabha. This bill was also stuck up for many years.
  • The Bill to give constitutional status to OBC Commission was passed in Lok Sabha with much fanfare and the government claimed it’s as a big achievement. But, on the last day of the Session, the government could not get it passed in Rajya Sabha where it was referred to the select committee. Similarly, despite the best efforts, the government could not push through the amendments in Motor Vehicle Act and the factory Amendment Bill in the Upper House.

18. Parliament passes 4 GST bills, July 1 rollout likely

  • “On May 17-18 we will give final approval to rules and rates… Looks like it can be implemented from July 1,” Jaitley told reporters after the Rajya Sabha cleared the Central GST Bill, 2017; The Integrated GST Bill, 2017; The GST (Compensation to States) Bill, 2017; and The Union Territory GST Bill, 2017.
  • The GST Council has approved a for rate structure – 5%, 12%, 18% and 28% – with most goods likely to fall in the 12% and 18% rate. In addition, a cess will be levied on luxury and sin goods as well. The law provides for a maximum GST rate of 40% (20% central GST and 20% state GST).

19. Tamil Nadu farmers committing suicides due to severe draught.

  • In a wake-up call to Tamil Nadu government, the Supreme Court took stern exception to the State’s lack of “humanitarian concern” and initiative in saving its farmers, who are reeling under severe drought and harsh living conditions, and preventing them from taking their own lives.
  • A Bench led by Justice Dipak Misra said it was the duty of the State government to protect its farmers, many of whom have been protesting in the national capital for the past 31 days for relief.
  • The hearing was based on a petition filed by TN Centre for Public Interest Litigation highlighting the plight of farmers and the increasing number of suicides among them.

20. Malala becomes honorary Canadian

  • Urges lawmakers to prioritise girls’ education when the country’s Parliament hosts G7 summit next year.
  • Malala Yousafzai is using her honorary Canadian citizenship to call on the country’s leaders to take real action to improve educational opportunities for girls.
  • Ms. Yousafzai was 15 when she shot in the head by Taliban militants in Pakistan in 2012. She was targeted due to her advocacy for women’s education. She was originally scheduled to receive the honor on Oct. 22, 2014, but the ceremony was cancelled after a gunman attacked Canada’s Parliament Hill that day.

21. Russia vetoes UN resolution to condemn Syria chemical attack

  • The vote on the Security Council resolution drafted by Britain, France and the United States was 10 in favour, Russia and Bolivia against, and China, Kazakhstan and Ethiopia abstaining.
  • It was the eighth veto by Russia, a close ally of Syrian President Bashar Assad, on a Western-backed Syria resolution and reflected the deep division that has left the U.N.’s most powerful body struggling to tackle the use of banned chemical weapons and to help end the six-year Syrian conflict. China has vetoed six resolutions.
  • Russia’s U.N. Ambassador Vladimir Safronkov told the council before the vote that a resolution was unnecessary, and the draft put forward by the Western powers pre-judged that the Syrian government was responsible for the April 4 attack on Khan Sheikhoun in which nearly 90 people died.

22. European court rules against Russia in 2004 Beslan school siege

23. Kulbhushan Jadhav held in Pakistan

  • Kulbushan Jadhav was allegedly arrested in the Chaman area of Balochistan on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border on March 3, 2016.
  • Pakistan said he was a serving Indian naval officer and accused him of working for India’s Research and Analysis Wing (RAW). Pakistan also produced a passport (No. L9630722), purportedly belonging to him, which showed his assumed name as ‘Hussein Mubarak Patel’, born in Sangli, Maharashtra, and living in Powai, as well as a valid Iranian visa in his name
  • India denied that he had any links to its government but said that he was running a business in the Iranian port city of Chabahar after a “premature retirement” from the Navy. India was denied consular access to him.
  • The Ministry of External Affairs said he was facing “harassment” and had probably been kidnapped from Iran.
  • Jadhav’s death sentence was approved by Pakistan’s Army chief

24. Panel to suggest norms for Bitcoins, virtual currencies

  • The government has decided to close the regulatory gaps to keep a check on virtual currencies, including Bitcoins, and has set up an inter-disciplinary committee to recommend an action plan for dealing with such currencies within three months.
  • To examine the existing framework for virtual currencies, the department of economic affairs in the Ministry of Finance has constituted an inter- disciplinary committee chaired by Special Secretary (Economic Affairs) with representatives from the departments of revenue and financial services and the ministries of home Affairs as well as electronics and Information Technology.
  • The committee will also include experts from the RBI, the central government’s think tank NITI Aayog and the country’s largest bank, State Bank of India.

25. PV Sindhu Beats Carolina Marin To Clinch Maiden India Open Crown:

  • PV Sindhu defeated Carolina Marin in straight games to win her maiden India Open and second Superseries title of her career.
  • An impeccable performance from PV Sindhu helped her win a maiden women’s singles title at the $325,000 India Open Superseries in New Delhi on Sunday. The 21-year-old came out with her best game to defeat reigning Olympic and World Champion Carolina Marin of Spain 21-19, 21-16 in 47 minutes in the final.
  • Only two other Indians — Saina Nehwal (women’s singles) and Kidambi Srikanth (men’s singles) — have won the India Open previously, both clinching their respective titles in 2015.

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