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Daily Current Affairs – 2020

Topic: For Prelims and Mains

Amendments in Arms act, 1959

Why in News? Amendments in Arms Act, 1959 and Arms Rules, 2016 notified.

Key changes:

  1. As per the new rules, now International medalists/renowned shooters are allowed to keep additional weapons up to a total of twelve under the exempted category, which earlier was seven.
  2. If a shooter is renowned in one event, he/she can keep maximum eight (previously it was four), if a shooter is renowned in two events he/she can keep maximum ten (previously it was seven) and if a shooter is renowned in more than two events, he/she can keep maximum twelve (previously it was seven) firearms under the exempted category.
  3. Junior target shooters/aspiring shooters are now allowed to possess two weapons (previously one) of any category in which the person is engaged.
  4. Apart from the above exemptions, shooters are entitled to possess two firearms as normal citizens under provisions of the Arms Act, 1959.
  5. Similarly, by amending the provision under Rule 40 of the Arms Rules, 2016 the quantity of ammunition that can be purchased by the shooters during the year for the practice has also been increased considerably.
  6. Through these amendments, it has also been clarified that no licence is required for Indian citizens for acquisitions, possession of small arms falling under the category of curio.
  7. However, appropriate licence as prescribed would be required for use or to carry or transport such small arms.
  8. Without the endorsement of such firearms in the prescribed licence of the owner, no ammunition shall be sold for their use.

 

About the Arms (Amendment) Bill, 2019:

  1. It seeks to enhance the punishment for existing offences like illegal manufacture, sale, transfer, etc.; illegal acquiring, possessing or carrying prohibited arms or prohibited ammunition; and illegal manufacture, sale, transfer, conversion, import, export, etc., of firearms.
  2. It also proposes to define new offences and prescribes punishment for them, such as taking away firearms from police or armed forces, involvement in organized crime syndicate, illicit trafficking including smuggled firearms of foreign make or prohibited arms and prohibited ammunition, use of firearms in rash and negligent manner in celebratory gunfire endangering human life, etc.

It seeks to enhance the period of arms license from three years to five years and also to issue arms license in its electronic form to prevent forgery.

Kalasa – Banduri Nala  Project

Why in News? The cost of the Kalasa-Banduri Nala project on the Mahadayi basin has risen from about Rs 94 crores (2000) to ₹1,677.30 crores (2020) due to the ongoing inter-State river water dispute.

Mahadayi River:

  • Mahadayi or Mhadei, the west-flowing river, originates in Bhimgad Wildlife Sanctuary (Western Ghats), Belagavi district of Karnataka.
  • It is essentially a rain-fed river also called Mandovi in Goa.
  • It is joined by a number of streams to form the Mandovi which is one of two major rivers (the other one is Zuari river) that flows through Goa.
  • The river travels 35 km in Karnataka; 82 km in Goa before joining the Arabian Sea.

 

About the Kalasa-Banduri Nala Project:

  • It is undertaken by the Government of Karnataka to improve drinking water supply to the three districts of Belagavi, Dharwad, and Gadag.
  • It involves building across Kalasa and Banduri, two tributaries of the Mahadayi river to divert water to the Malaprabha river (a tributary of Krishna river).
  • Malaprabha river supplies the drinking water to Dharwad, Belgaum, and Gadag districts.
  • Kalasa-Banduri project was planned in 1989; Goa raised an objection to it.

The Mahadayi Water Disputes Tribunal was set up in 2010. Goa, Karnataka and Maharashtra are parties to the tribunal

Facts for Prelims

Olive Ridley Turtle:

Preparations are almost done at the Rushikulya rookery on the Odisha coast to welcome and protect olive ridley turtles during mass nesting.

Olive Ridley Turtles are the smallest and most abundant of all sea turtles found in the world, inhabiting warm waters of the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian oceans.

These turtles, along with the Kemps ridley turtle, are best known for their unique mass nesting called Arribada (mass-nesting event when thousands of turtles come ashore at the same time to lay eggs on the same).

  • They are carnivores

Conservation Status:

  • Schedule 1 in Wildlife Protection Act, 1972.
  • The Olive ridley turtle is recognized as Vulnerable by the IUCN Red list.
  • International trade in these turtles and their products is banned under CITES Appendix I.

v SPICe+ web form:

  • MCA Secretary has recently inaugurated the  SPICe+ web form.
  • SPICe+ will offer 10 services by 3 Central Government Ministries/Departments in a single web form.

 About the SPICe+ web form:

  • As part of Government of India’s Ease of Doing Business (EODB) initiatives, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs has notified a new Web Form christened ‘SPICe+’ (pronounced ‘SPICe Plus’) replacing the existing SPICe form.
  • SPICe+ would offer 10 services by 3 Central Govt Ministries & Departments (Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Ministry of Labour & Department of Revenue in the Ministry of Finance) and One State Government (Maharashtra), thereby saving as many procedures, time and cost for starting a Business in India.

Following are the features of the new Spice+ web form:

  • SPICe+ would be an integrated Web Form.
  • SPICe+ would have two parts viz.: Part A-for Name reservation for new companies and Part B offering a bouquet of services like Mandatory issue of PAN, EPFO registration, Allotment of GSTIN

 

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