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Current Affairs for UPSC IAS Exam – 21 February 2020


  1. CAA will cause Muslims to face exclusion: U.S. panel
  2. SC passes interim order on Mahadayi tribunal’s award
  3. Article 371
  4. Economy needs more monetary stimulus: RBI Governor


Why in news?

  • Days before U.S. President Donald Trump is due in India, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) released a fact sheet on the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA).
  • “There are serious concerns that the CAA serves as a protective measure for non­-Muslims in case of exclusion from a nationwide National Register of Citizens (NRC),” the USCIRF says 


  • The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom is a U.S. federal government commission created by the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998.
  • USCIRF Commissioners are appointed by the President and the leadership of both political parties in the Senate and the House of Representatives
  • USCIRF researches and monitors international religious freedom issues.
  • The Commission is authorized to travel on fact-finding missions to other countries and hold public hearings


Why in news?

  • The Supreme Court  passed an interim order allowing an application by the State of Karnataka to notify the Mahadayi Water Dispute Tribunal’s award.
  • The implementation of the award would, however, be subject to the final judgment of the Supreme Court in the civil appeals filed by Karnataka, Goa and Maharashtra, challenging the allocation of water from the Mahadayi river among them

Mahadayi(Mandovi) river and backgrounder of the dispute

  • Lifeline of the Indian state of Goa
  • The Mandovi and the Zuari are the two primary rivers in the state of Goa.
  • Mandovi joins with the Zuari at a common creek at Cabo Aguada, forming the Mormugao harbour
  • The sharing of the waters of this river is a cause of dispute between the governments of Karnataka and Goa.
  • The Karnataka government proposes to divert some water from the Mahadayi river to the Malaprabha River basin as part of the Kalasa-Banduri Nala project, as approximately 188 tmcft of water at 75% dependability is available in the river.
  • Mahadayi Water Tribunal under Interstate River Water Disputes Act has been constituted to decide the sharing of the river waters by the riparian states.
  • In August 2018, Mahadayi Water Tribunal verdict permitted Goa to use 24 tmcft (excluding the 9.395 tmcft prevailing uses), Karnataka to use 5.4 tmcft (including 3.9 tmcft for export outside the basin) and Maharashtra to use 1.33 tmcft for consumptive purposes


Why in news?

Union Home Minister told that Centre won’t dilute Article 371


  • Most of the States that have been accorded special provisions under Article 371 are in the northeast and the special status aims to preserve their tribal culture.
  • Article 371(A) states that no act of Parliament shall apply to the State of Nagaland in respect of the religious or social practices of the Nagas, its customary law and procedure, administration of civil and criminal justice involving decisions according to Naga customary law and ownership and transfer of land and its resources.
  • It shall apply to Nagaland only after the State Assembly passes a resolution to do so, it says.
  • Article 371(A) states that land and its resources in the State belong to the people and not the government.
  • Article 371B deals with special provision with respect to the State of Assam.
  • The main objective of inserting Article 371B was to facilitate the creation of the sub-State ‘Meghalaya’.
  • Article 371C deals with special provisions with respect to Manipur which became a State in 1972.
  • Special provisions with respect to Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Goa are dealt in Articles 371D and 371E, 371J, 371I respectively.
  • Article 371-G that deals with special provisions with respect to Mizoram has similar nature.
  • It states that an act of Parliament relating to religious and social practices of Mizo customary law and procedure, administration of civil or criminal justice involving decisions according to Mizo customary law, ownership and transfer of land and its resources will not apply to Mizoram unless State assembly decides to do so.
  • Articles 371F, 371H talk about special provisions with respect to States of Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh, respectively.
  • Article 371 gives the power to the President of India to establish separate development boards for Vidarbha, Marathwada regions of Maharashtra and the rest of the State and Saurashtra, Kutch and rest of Gujarat.


Why in news?

  • Economy needs a further monetary stimulus, thus indicating that the central bank was open to cutting interest rates as Green shoots are visible
  • While the macroeconomy needs further monetary stimulus, the inflation outlook continues to be uncertain
  • Considering the overall evolving growth­ inflation situation, it would be prudent to continue the focus on growth in the context of the expected moderation in inflation

What is monetary stimulus?

Monetary stimulus refers to lowering interest rates, quantitative easing, or other ways of increasing the amount of money or credit. It is an effort to increase economic activity by increasing the amount of money in the economy

May 2024