Current Affairs – 01-01-2018

1.NEW NIGHT FROG SPECIES

Scientists have discovered a new frog species from Kozhikode’s Malabar Wildlife Sanctuary. The frog species, named Mewa Singh’s Night frog, belongs to a genus endemic to the Western Ghats. The frog has been named after wildlife scientist Mewa Singh, in honour of his contributions to behavioural ecology and primate studies.

2.NO MORE FREE CONVERSION

The Govt has stopped the scheme of free conversion of PIO cards to OCI. The scheme of converting the Person of Indian Origin (PIO) cards to OCI cards free of cost comes to an end as a decision has been taken not to give any more extension beyond December 31. However, the change of PIO cards to OCI cards would continue on payment of fees.

3.FIRST DRAFT OF NRC

The much-awaited first draft of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) was published with the names of 1.9 crore people out of the 3.29 crore total applicants in Assam recognising them as legal citizens of India. The NRC is being compiled following a Supreme Court directive to identify illegal immigrants in Assam.

Background: Assam, which faced influx from Bangladesh since the early 20th century, is the only state having an NRC, first prepared in 1951. The Supreme Court, which is monitoring the entire process, had ordered that the first draft of the NRC be published by December 31 after completing the scrutiny of over two crore claims along with that of around 38 lakh people whose documents were suspect.

What’s the issue?

  • The NRC was last updated in Assam way back in 1951. Then, it had recorded 80 lakh citizens in the State. Since then, the process of identification of illegal immigrants in Assam has been debated and become a contentious issue in the State’s politics.
  • A six-year agitation demanding identification and deportation of illegal immigrants was launched by the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) in 1979. It culminated with the signing of the Assam Accord on August 15, 1985.

About NRC: The National Register of Citizens (NRC) contains names of Indian citizens. The NRC was prepared in 1951, after the Census of 1951. It was prepared by recording particulars of all the persons enumerated during that Census.

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