Top 10 Weekly Current Affairs: 26 November to 1 December 2018

Revised GDP Back Series data: All you need to know about new GDP data

Nearly four years after moving to a new GDP series, the Union Ministry of Statistics & Programme Implementation (MOSPI) on November 28, 2018 released the revised Gross Domestic Product (GDP) data for the years 2004-2005 to 2010-2011.

Modifying the data of past years using 2011-12 as the base year instead of 2004-05, the Central Statistics Office (CSO) lowered the GDP growth rate under the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government from 10.3 percent in financial year 2010-11 to 8.5 percent.

Capital Punishment in India: SC upholds constitutional validity of death penalty

The Supreme Court on November 28, 2018 upheld the constitutional validity of death penalty while awarding life term imprisonment to Chhannu Lal Verma instead of death penalty for murdering three persons including two women.

While delivering the judgment, a three-judge bench comprising Justices Kurian Joseph, Deepak Gupta and Hemant Gupta expressed different opinions with Justice Joseph saying that the provision of capital punishment has failed to become a deterrent and the other two holding its continuance in the rarest of rare cases.

Though the three judges differed on the applicability of death penalty, they were unanimous in commuting or reducing the death sentence of Chhannu Lal Verma.

ISRO successfully launches HySIS satellite aboard PSLV-C43

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on November 29, 2018 successfully launched a hyperspectral imaging satellite (HySIS), an earth observation satellite along with 30 foreign commercial satellites from Sriharikota launch centre in Andhra Pradesh.

HySIS is an earth observation satellite developed by ISRO. It is the primary satellite of the PSLV-C43 mission. The mass of the satellite is about 380 kg. The primary goal of the satellite would be to study the earth’s surface in visible, near infrared and shortwave infrared regions of the electromagnetic spectrum.

The foreign satellites launched along with HySIS include 1 Micro and 29 Nano satellites from 8 different countries.

Maharatna, Navratna & Miniratna Status: NPCC is now a Miniratna

The Union Government on November 27, 2018 conferred the ‘Miniratna status: Category –I’ on the National Projects Construction Corporation Limited (NPCC). The empowerment of Miniratna Status will help NPCC in taking speedy decisions by enhancing the delegation of powers to the Board. NPCC has also been awarded with the ISO 9001:2015 Certification.

The government grants the status of Maharatna, Navratna, and Miniratna to Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) and Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs) based upon the profit made by these enterprises. The Maharatna, Navratna and Miniratna statuses give financial and administrative power to the companies to a certain extent.

G20 Summit 2018 begins in Argentina

The 2018 G20 Summit began on November 28, 2018 in the city of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Nineteen leaders of the world's biggest economies and a representative of the European Union will be holding a meeting on November 30 as part of the G20 summit.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be representing India at the Summit and is scheduled to meet US President Donald Trump, Chinese President Xi Jinping, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Argentina President Mauricio Macri, Chilean President Sebastian Pinera and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, on the sidelines of the summit.

Shut down of Sterlite Copper plant: NGT Committee rules that closure is against natural justice

A National Green Tribunal (NGT) Committee on November 27, 2018 ruled that the closure of the Sterlite copper plant in Tamil Nadu is not sustainable and is against the natural justice, thus, the closure is not justified.

The committee directed Vedanta to set rules for carrying out waste management. The panel also asked the Central Pollution Control Board to ensure the firm’s compliance with pollution norms. Following the submission of report, a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel directed both Vedanta and the Tamil Nadu government to file its responses to the report within one week.

Sunil Arora appointed as new Chief Election Commissioner

President Ram Nath Kovind on November 26, 2018 appointed Sunil Arora as the new Chief Election Commissioner. He would be succeeding OP Rawat who retired on November 24.
The 62-year-old Arora was appointed to the Election Commission on August 31, 2017. He was brought in last year to fill the vacancy created by former CEC Nasim Zaidi’s retirement.

He is now expected to take charge of his new post on December 2, 2018.
Sunil Arora is a 1980 batch IAS officer of the Rajasthan Cadre, who has held top positions in various government departments and ministries.

Venkaiah Naidu lays down foundation stone of Dera Baba Nanak - Kartarpur Sahib Corridor

Marking a new beginning in India-Pakistan relations, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on November 26, 2018 laid the foundation stone for the construction of Dera Baba Nanak - Kartarpur Sahib Road Corridor on the Indian side at Mann village in Gurdaspur district of Punjab.

The corridor will provide a passage to Indian Sikh pilgrims to visit the holy site of Gurudwara Darbar Sahib at Kartarpur in Pakistan.

The foundation stone was laid in the presence of Union Minister for Road Transport Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister of Food Processing Harsimrat Kaur Badal, and Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amrinder Singh.

Sentinel Island: Why Sentinelese wish to remain isolated?

Known to be isolated and unwelcoming to outsiders, the tribesmen of the Sentinelese tribe have been in the news lately, after they reportedly killed and buried an American missionary John Allen Chau, who had gone to the islands to tell the remote tribe that "Jesus loves you".

The Indian police, who had gone to the islands to retrieve the body of the 27-year-old American on November 24, were forced to turn back from the off-limits island in North Sentinel after seeing the tribesmen on the beach armed with bows and arrows.

John Allen Chau was reportedly shot by an arrow and buried on the beach on North Sentinel Island, after paying Indian fishermen to illegally take him to the island in the Andaman Sea.

India marks 10th anniversary of 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks

India on November 26, 2018 marked the tenth anniversary of 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks that left 166 people dead and over 300 people injured. President Ram Nath Kovind paid tributes to the victims of terror attacks. Ten years back in 2008, 10 terrorists of Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist group sailed into Mumbai and carried out coordinated attacks that lasted for three days.

The terrorists carried out bomb explosions and gun firings at Taj Mahal Palace hotel, the Oberoi Trident, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus railway station, Leopold Cafe, Cama Hospital, Nariman House Jewish community centre, the Metro Cinema and St. Xavier's College.

Mary Kom clinches gold in World Boxing Championship


Mary Kom created history on November 24, 2018 by winning her sixth world championship gold at the 10th World Women’s Boxing Championships, held in New Delhi, India.

Speaking on her historic win, Mary Kom said that it is very special as she was under pressure, especially because of the change in her weight category. “I won my last Worlds gold in 2010 and then the change of weight for Olympics happened. The pressure was something I always felt but don't know how to put this gold alongside the earlier five," she reasoned.

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