Press Information Bureau (PIB)- 08th Nov to 15th Nov, 2017

Press Information Bureau (PIB) Current Affairs – 08th Nov to 15th Nov, 2017 (CAO PIB Weekly Notes for UPSC IAS)

PIB Current Affairs Nov 1st week


 2nd meeting of Island Development Agency (IDA)

{Infrastructure & Development}

In news

The Island Development Agency reviewed the concept development plans and detailed master plans for holistic development of 09 islands – four in A&N Islands i.e. Smith, Ross, Long, Avis and five in Lakshadweep i.e. Minicoy, Bangaram, Thinnakara, Cheriyam, Suheli.


The project being steered by NITI Aayog aims at promoting and implementing development based on sustainable approach to building a thriving maritime economy of the project islands.


The IDA was set up on June 1 this year following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s review meeting for the development of islands. The meetings of the agency are chaired by the Union Home Minister.

Members of the IDA include cabinet secretary, home secretary, secretary (environment, forests and climate change), secretary (tourism) and secretary (tribal welfare).

 India’s Second Technology and Innovation Support Center (TISC)

{Science & Tech}

In news

The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry, has signed an Institutional agreement with Anna University to establish India’s second Technology and Innovation Support Centre (TISC).

About TISC

  • These centres will be set up under WIPO’s Technology and Innovation Support Centers (TISC) program.
  • The programme provides innovators in developing countries with access to locally based, high quality technology information and related services, helping them to exploit their innovative potential and to create, protect, and manage their intellectual property (IP) rights.

Objective of the TISC

To stimulate a dynamic, vibrant and balanced Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) system in India to foster creativity and innovation, thereby promoting entrepreneurship and enhancing social, economic and cultural development by establishing a network of TISCs in India.

  • The Cell for IPR Promotion and Management (CIPAM) is designated as the National Focal point for the TISC national network.
  • As the national focal point, CIPAM will identify potential host institutions, assess their capacities and support them in joining the TISC project.
  • CIPAM will also act as the main intermediary between WIPO and TISC host institutions and coordinate all the activities of the national TISC network.

Services offered by TISC’s

  • Access to online patent and non-patent (scientific and technical) resources and IP-related publications.
  • Assistance in searching and retrieving technology information.
  • Training in database search.
  • On-demand searches (novelty, state-of-the-art and infringement).
  • Monitoring technology and competitors.
  • Basic information on industrial property laws, management and strategy, and technology commercialization and marketing.

 Centre approves creation of National Testing Agency


In news

The Union Cabinet has approved creation of National Testing Agency (NTA) as a Society registered under the Indian Societies Registration Act, 1860, and as an autonomous and self-sustained premier testing organization to conduct entrance examinations for higher educational institutions.


Its creation will relieve the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) – which conducts exams like the National Eligibilty-cum-Entrance Test – and the All India Council for Technical Education of the burden of conducting entrance tests.


  • The NTA would initially conduct those entrance examinations which are currently being conducted by the CBSE.
  • Other examinations will be taken up gradually after NTA is fully geared up.
  • The entrance examinations will be conducted in online mode at least twice a year, thereby giving adequate opportunity to candidates to bring out their best.
  • In order to serve the requirements of the rural students, it would locate the centres at sub-district/district level and as far as possible would undertake hands-on training to the students.


  • NTA will be chaired by an eminent educationist appointed by MHRD.
  • The CEO will be the Director General to be appointed by the Government.
  • There will be a Board of Governors comprising members from user institutions.
  • The Director General will be assisted by 9 verticals headed by academicians/ experts.


NTA will be given a one-time grant of Rs.25 crore from the Government of India to start its operation in the first year. Thereafter, it will be financially self-sustainable.


Establishment of NTA will benefit about 40 lakh students appearing in various entrance examinations. It will relieve CBSE, AICTE and other agencies from responsibility of conducting these entrance examinations, and also bring in high reliability, standardized difficulty level for assessing the aptitude, intelligence and problem-solving abilities of the students.

 2nd Meeting of EAC-PM focuses on Job Creation, Social Sector and Infrastructure

{Indian Economy}

In news

The Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister in its second meeting laid out a roadmap for stepping up skill development, job creation; enhanced resource investment in the social


  • It formulated recommendations to guide the evolving framework for the 15th Finance Commission, including the incentivization of states for achieving health, education and social inclusion outcomes.
  • The Council is also evolving the design of a new Economy Tracking Monitor, linking economic growth indicators with social indicators.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has constituted five member EAC-PM in September 2017 as an independent body to provide advice on economic issue to the government, specifically to the Prime Minister. It consists of economists of high repute and eminence. It serves as an independent institutional mechanism, to provide informed advice to the Prime Minister on addressing issues of macroeconomic importance and related aspects.

 Cabinet approves appointment of Second National Judicial Pay Commission for Subordinate Judiciary in the country

{Economic Policy}

In news

  • The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved appointment of Second National Judicial Pay Commission (SNJPC) for Subordinate Judiciary in the country.
  • The commission will decide on a salary hike for almost 21,000 judges of the subordinate judiciary level.
  • The Commission will make its recommendations to the State Governments preferably within a period of 18 months.


  • It will examine the present structure of emoluments and conditions of service of Judicial Officers in the States and UTs.
  • The Commission aims to evolve the principles which would govern pay structure and other emoluments of Judicial Officers belonging to the Subordinate Judiciary of the country.
  • It will examine the work methods and work environment as also the variety of allowance and benefits in kind that are available to Judicial Officers in addition to pay and to suggest rationalization and simplification thereof.
  • The Commission will devise its own procedures and formulate modalities necessary for accomplishing the task.
  • The Commission also aims at making the pay scales and conditions of service of Judicial Officers uniform throughout the country.
  • The recommendations of the Commission will help in promoting efficiency in Judicial Administration, optimizing the size of judiciary etc. and to remove anomalies created in implementation of earlier recommendations.

The current entry-level salary for a junior civil judge is Rs45,000 while a senior judge gets nearly Rs80,000.

 India Youth Development Index and Report 2017


In news

Union Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports (Independent Charge) Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore here today released the India Youth Development Index and Report 2017.


To track the trends in Youth Development across the States. The Index enables recognizing the high and low performing states, identifies the weak domains and informs the policy makers the priority areas of intervention for youth development in the states.

Youth Development Index

  • The index tracks the trends in Youth Development across the States. The Index enables recognizing the high and low performing states, identifies the weak domains and informs the policy makers the priority areas of intervention for youth development in the states.
  • This report is of immense value to enable comparisons across geographical areas and categories, as human development index has done in comparing the development situation across regions, nations and localities.
  • The index also measures the achievements made besides serving as an advocacy tool for youth development and facilitates to identify priority areas for development of Policy and Interventions.
  • As an effective decision – support tool, the YDI-2017 will enable the policy makers track the national and the regional progress as well setbacks in youth development policies, planning, priority identification and implementation strategies. Besides providing insights to suggest alternatives and options, it also aids in judicious allocation of resources.

How is India Youth Development Index different from Global YDI?

  • In the India Youth Development Index 2017, the first five dimensions are retained same as that of Global YDI. The indicators and weights have been modified based on the availability of data at sub-national level and the importance of the indicators in explaining Youth Development with the aim of capturing the multidimensional properties that indicate progress in youth development at the sub-national level i.e., state level. Global YDI is different from YDI constructed for India in one unique way; YDI for India adds a new domain, social inclusion, to assess the inclusiveness of societal progress as structural inequalities persist in Indian society. This construction helps to identify the gaps that require intensification of policy intervention.
  • Youth are defined as those aged 15 to 29 in the national youth policy (2014). This age-group constitutes 27.5% of India’s population.

 Railway Minister gives directions for “comprehensive training programme” for all employees of Indian Railways to boost productivity & efficiency

{Employment & Development}

In news

Comprehensive plan for imparting training to all employees of Indian Railways is being prepared with a view to upgrade skill & knowledge. This comprehensive training programme named as “Project Saksham” will help boost productivity and efficiency.

Key facts

  • Under Project Saksham, over the next one year, all employees in each zone will be put through a week’s training in skills and knowledge relelevant to their work area.
  • It will be a five-day-on-the-job or classroom training in Railway Training Centres, depending on the nature of their employment.
  • The nature of short-duration training will range from refresher courses, with eye on evolved global practices in respective areas, to skills in existing lining of functioning.
  • Employees from rank of a peon to higher echelons of Railway Board Members will undergo the training.


{Art & Culture}

In news

Ministry of Tribal Affairs along with Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation Ltd (TRIFED), is organizing “AADI MAHOTSAV” a celebration of the spirit of Tribal Culture, Cuisine and Commerce.

The Mahotsav : Showcasing Tribal Culture, Commerce & Cuisine

  • The festival will run for a fortnight through 30th November 2017. The theme of the festival is: A Celebration of the Spirit of Tribal Culture, Cuisine and Commerce. The festival will feature exhibition-cum-sale of tribal handicrafts, art, paintings, fabric, jewellery and much more through about 200 stalls.
  • Over 750 tribal artisans and artists from over 25 States will be participating in the festival. A special feature of the festival is Tribal India cuisine, recreated and presented in delectable forms to suit urban tastes by special tribal chefs.


  • MSP for MFP Scheme for providing a fair and equitable deal to the tribals.
  • Minor Forest Produce (MFP) is a major source of livelihood for tribals who belong to the poorest of the poor section of society.
  • The importance of MFPs for this section of the society can be gauged from the fact that around 100 million forest dwellers depend on MFPs for food, shelter, medicines and income.
  • It provides them critical subsistence during the lean seasons, particularly for primitive tribal groups such as hunter gatherers, and the landless. Tribals derive 20-40% of their annual income from MFP.
  • This activity has strong linkage to women’s financial empowerment as most of the MFPs are collected and used /sold by women. MFP sector has the potential to create about 10 million workdays annually in the country.
  • The scheme was ready for implementation in March 2014 after a series of studies conducted by the Planning Commission since 2007 (Haque Committee & Sudha Pillai Committee) the recommendation of which supports providing support price to MFP gatherers, enhance their income level and ensure sustainable harvesting of MFPs. The MSP scheme seeks to establish a framework to ensure fair prices for the produce collected by them, assurance of buying at a particular price, primary processing, storage, transportation etc.

Other schemes

  • Government of India has taken a number of initiatives for socio economic development of tribals like introduction Forest Rights Act, 2006 (Section- 3), PESA Act, 1996 (Section -4), and has been implementing schemes for development of MFP by providing financial support to State TDCCs and TRIFED for market development of MFPs.
  • Recognizing the critical importance which MFPs hold for tribals and the potential to generate large scale employment opportunities empowering the tribals, Government of India introduced an ambitious scheme of providing fair price for the MFP collected by tribals through Minimum Support Price (MSP).

“Young Entrepreneur Development Programme”:

  • Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development of India Ltd., TRIFED plans to expand sale operations by empanelling young and smart sales boys/girls for undertaking house to house campaign for sale of our tribal products.
  • These young sales boys/girls shall be known as “Young Entrepreneurs of TRIFED (YET)”. Under this programme, young boys and girls fulfilling the prescribed basic criteria shall be registered as Entrepreneur of TRIFED for a period of 1 year, which will be renewed depending upon the performance of the YET.

 300 Cyber security experts to attend first ever Asia Pacific Computer Emergency Response Team (Apcert) Conference

{Internal Security}

In news

The Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) under the aegis of Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology organizing the Asia Pacific Computer Emergency Response Team (APCERT) Conference.

This is the 15th Conference of APCERT and first ever conference in India and South Asia and is expected to be attended by 21 economies.

The conference theme is “Building Trust in the Digital Economy”


CERT-In is operational since January 2004. The constituency of CERT-In is the Indian Cyber Community. CERT-In is the national nodal agency for responding to computer security incidents as and when they occur.

In the recent Information Technology Amendment Act 2008, CERT-In has been designated to serve as the national agency to perform the following functions in the area of cyber security:

  • Collection, analysis and dissemination of information on cyber incidents.
  • Forecast and alerts of cyber security incidents
  • Emergency measures for handling cyber security incidents
  • Coordination of cyber incident response activities.
  • Issue guidelines, advisories, vulnerability notes and whitepapers relating to information security practices, procedures, prevention, response and reporting of cyber incidents.
  • Such other functions relating to cyber security as may be prescribed.

 Hunar Haat {Governance}

The fourth Hunar Haat exhibition was recently organised by the Ministry of Minority Affairs at India International Trade Fair (IITF) at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi.

Hunar Haats

  • Hunar Haats are organised by Ministry of Minority Affairs under USTTAD (Upgrading the Skills & Training in Traditional Arts/Crafts for Development) scheme.
  • The USTTAD scheme aims at preserving & promoting the rich heritage of the traditional arts & crafts of the Minority communities. This is one of the flagship programmes of the Ministry.

Key facts

  • Hunar Haats have become a successful mission to provide employment and income generation opportunities with platforms for marketing the products of master artisans, craftsmen and culinary experts belonging to the minority communities.
  • It envisages at boosting the skill of craftsmen, weavers and artisans who are already engaged in the traditional ancestral work.

 India’s Positive Actions at Ministerial Press Conference of BASIC Countries at COP 23

{Environment & Ecology}


This article highlights the talks of conference at Bonn

Highlights of this conference

  • India has been amongst the frontrunners in meeting its voluntary targets of reduction of emission intensity of its GDP.
  • The Minister called upon both developed and developing countries to fulfil their commitment for pre-2020 period. He further voiced India’s equal commitment to achieve Nationally Determined Contribution target of reduction of energy intensity of India’s GDP by 33-35% by 2030.
  • An early ratification of second commitment period of Kyoto Protocol and concrete actions on provisions of support. India expects that the second commitment period is operationalized as per existing commitments.
  • By 2020, the goal of $100 billion per year must be achievedand following the principle of non-regression and that this must improve further in following years.

India’s Contribution

  • India’s contribution to cumulative stock of CO2 equivalent is less than 3%
  • India’s positive climate actions including promotion of renewable energy, sustainable transport, afforestation policies, climate friendly agricultural practices, energy efficiency, water conservation, smart cities. That India is one of the few countries where, despite ongoing development, forest and tree cover has increased, transforming country’s forests into a net sink owing to national policies aimed at conservation and sustainable management of forests. As an NDC goal, India aims at creating an additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent through additional forest and tree cover by 2030.
  • India has achieved the renewable energy capacity of 60 GW and that aims to scale it up further to achieve about 40 percent of cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel based energy resources by 2030.

BASIC Countries

  • The BASIC countries (also Basic countries or BASIC) are a bloc of four large newly industrialized countries – Brazil, South Africa, India and China – formed by an agreement on 28 November 2009.
  • The ministers from BASIC grouping (Brazil, South Africa, India and China)  the large number of ratifications under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) achieved to date and requested remaining parties to the UNFCCC to ratify the Agreement at an early date.

 Asia Pacific Cert (APCERT) Discuss Building Trust in Digital Economy

{Cyber Security}

In news

First ever Asia Pacific Computer Emergency Response Team (APCERT) Open Conference in India and the first in South Asia.

Innovation in cyber security is a big focus of the Government.

Key facts

  • There are more than 100 cyber security product companies in India and it was proposed that in furtherance of the Public Procurement (Preference to Make in India) preference shall be provided by all procuring entities in the government to domestically manufactured / produced Cyber Security Products.
  • India was selected to be part of the steering committee of APCERT along with 6 (Australia, China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia and Taiwan) other countries to shape the agenda for the next 2 years across the region.
  • In India, cyber security professionals got an opportunity to attend a highly content rich technical conference, interact with the Asia Pacific incident response leaders in cyber security and the International community got to see the skills and depth of some of the cyber security start-ups from India.
  • The spectrum of topics covered included setting up sectoral CSIRTS, Nation State exploits, vulnerabilities of block chain, secure communication in industrial internet, cyber-crime in financial technology ecosystem, building a sharing economy, machine learning, malicious behavior in encrypted traffic, mobile security and Artificial Intelligence.

Asia Pacific Computer Emergency Response Team

  • With the rapid development of the Internet, many Asia Pacific economies are now increasingly dependent on public network applications such as online banking, online stock trading, e-business, e-government and e-customs.
  • The protection of the various national information infrastructures that make up this new and emerging Asia Pacific e-economy is critical to the region’s political and economic stability and security. The need to protect these critical national information infrastructures is also urgent.
  • This growing threat in the Asia Pacific region requires a collaborative approach with the various CERT and CSIRT organizations taking the lead role with full support from their respective governments.


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