Today’s important articles/news in various newspapers (16th April)

Dear aspirants, following are the links of various articles taken from various newspapers. Click the link to read further. To get notification, follow the blog. Thank you

1. The power to withdraw a case: Vested with state govt, subject to court approval

What is it that gives a state government such powers to withdraw cases in matters of such serious nature?

2. Govt. ties up with IIT-Delhi for safety switches on vehicles

Women Safety through technical solution

  1. The Ministry of Electronics and IT in partnership with IIT-Delhi is working on a switch-based device in cars and buses to aid safety of women

Particulars of the system

  1. The proposed panic switch system when invoked will generate a loud alarm in the vehicle which will attract public attention,
  2. and send the coordinates of the person to a server [police control room] to provide necessary help
  3. The system will include features such as authenticating the driver of the vehicles and a camera interface

Trials for the systems are going on

  1. The field trials for the beta version of the system are already underway, and the Ministry expects to start rolling out the final version by next month
  2. The first version has been field tested and the final version is expected in May, 2018 for cars and by August, 2018 for buses

Funds from ‘Nirbhaya fund’

  1. The project is being funded by the Nirbhaya Fund, set up in 2013 for implementation of initiatives aimed at enhancing the safety and security of women in the country

3. Why ozone levels pose a challenge to food security


4. The need for balancing the devolution scales

Unsustainably biased financial devolution risks a ‘progressive-inclusive’ divide and, in the extreme, civil war.

The Government of India, with the approval President of India, has constituted Fifteenth Finance Commission in pursuance of clause (1) of article 280 of the Constitution, read with the provisions of the Finance Commission (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1951.

This Commission will be headed by Shri. N.K.Singh, former Member of Parliament and former Secretary to the Government of India.

The new Finance Commission will cover five-year period commencing April 1, 2020.
As per Article 280 of the Constitution, the Commission is required to make recommendations on the distribution of the net proceeds of taxes between the Centre and the states.
The Commission also suggests the principles which should govern the grants in aid of the revenues of the states out of the Consolidated Fund of India.

5. India is not a currency manipulator

In case the government buckles under US pressure, the likely result could be a faster appreciation of the rupee.

What Is A Currency War ?

A currency war refers to a situation where a number of nations seek to deliberately depreciate the value of their domestic currencies in order to stimulate their economies. Although currency depreciation or devaluation is a common occurrence in the foreign exchange market, the hallmark of a currency war is the significant number of nations that may be simultaneously engaged in attempts to devalue their currency at the same time.

A currency war is also known by the less threatening term  “competitive devaluation.” In the current era of floating exchange rates, where currency values are determined by market forces, currency depreciation is usually engineered by a nation’s central bank through economic policies that may force the currency lower, such as reducing interest rates or increasingly, “quantitative easing (QE).”

Why Depreciate a Currency?

It may seem counter-intuitive, but a strong currency is not necessarily in a nation’s best interests. A weak domestic currency makes a nation’s exports more competitive in global markets, and simultaneously makes imports more expensive. Higher export volumes spur economic growth, while pricey imports also have a similar effect because consumers opt for local alternatives to imported products. This improvement in the terms of trade generally translates into a lower current account deficit (or a greater current account surplus), higher employment, and faster GDP growth. The stimulative monetary policies that usually result in a weak currency also have a positive impact on the nation’s capital and housing markets, which in turn boosts domestic consumption through the wealth effect.

what are the negative effects of a currency war?

  • Currency devaluation may lower productivity in the long-term, since imports of capital equipment and machinery become too expensive for local businesses. If currency depreciation is not accompanied by genuine structural reforms, productivity will eventually suffer.
  • The degree of currency depreciation may be greater than what is desired, which may eventually cause rising inflation and capital outflows.
  • A currency war may lead to greater protectionism and the erecting of trade barriers, which would impede global trade.
  • Competitive devaluation may cause an increase in currency volatility, which in turn would lead to higher hedging costs for companies and possibly deter foreign investment.

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