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Current Affairs – 07-12-2017

1. INTERNATIONAL SOLAR ALLIANCE (ISA)
The International Solar Alliance (ISA) came into legal, independent existence.

  • So far, 19 countries are part of the compact — Bangladesh, Comoros, Fiji, France, Ghana, Guinea, India, Mali, Mauritius, Nauru, Niger, Seychelles, Somalia, South Sudan, Tuvalu, Australia, Cuba, Malawi and Peru.
  • The ISA also sees itself as on a mission to mobilise more than $1000 billion in investments needed by 2030 for “massive deployment” of solar energy.
  • As part of the agreement, India will contribute $27 million (Rs. 175.5 crore approx) to the ISA for creating corpus, building infrastructure and recurring expenditure over five years from 2016-17 to 2020-21.
  • In addition, public sector undertakings of the Government of India, Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) and Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA), have made a contribution of $1 million (Rs. 6.5 crore) each for creating the ISA corpus fund.

2. WASSENAAR ARRANGEMENT

Wassenaar Arrangement was established to contribute to regional and international security and stability. It aims to promote transparency and greater responsibility in transfer of conventional arms and dual-use goods and technologies. It has 41 member states and was established in 1996 as an extension of Coordination committee for Multilateral export Controls (COCOM). The participating states ensure that transfer of materials do not contribute to the development or enhancement of military capabilities.

3. OP SAHAYAM

It is an Indian Navy exercise for undertaking Search and Rescue (SAR) and providing Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster relief (HADR) material support, over Southeast Arabian Sea and L& M islands in the aftermath of Very Severe Cyclonic Storm ‘OCKHI’.

4. COMMITTEE TO LOOK INTO WHETHER HINDUS SHOULD GET MINORITY STATUS
The National Commission for Minorities (NCM) has formed a three-member committee to look into whether Hindus should get minority status in eight states where they are not the dominant religious group.

A petition has been filed with NCM seeking minority status for Hindus in eight states: J&K, Lakshadweep, Mizoram, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya and Punjab.

Why this move?

  • The activist had originally filed a petition in the Supreme Court.
  • The court declined to adjudicate, saying it is not something that the court can decide on.
  • Activist then approached the Commission with his plea.

What does petition say?

  • According to 2011 Census, Hindus are a minority in eight states.
  • Their minority rights are being siphoned off illegally and arbitrarily to the majority population.
  • This is because neither central nor state governments have notified Hindus as a ‘minority’ under Section 2(c) of National Commission for Minority Act.
  • Thus, Hindus are being deprived of their basic rights, guaranteed under Articles 25 to 30 of Constitution
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