Supply Chain Resilience Initiative
In a move to counter China's dominance of supply chain in the Indo-Pacific region, trade ministers of India, Japan and Australia formally launched the Supply Chain Resilience Initiative (SCRI).
SCRI will focus on sharing best practices on supply chain resilience and holding investment promotion events and buyer-seller matching events to provide opportunities for stakeholders to explore the possibility of diversification of their supply chains.
Report on trends in global military expenditure in 2020
According to a report on "trends in global military expenditure in 2020", published by Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) - world's top military spenders - the US, China and India - saw their military spending go up compared to 2019, even during a pandemic year.
In 2020, India's military spending was 2.9 per cent of it's GDP, while the corresponding numbers for US and China were 3.7 per cent and 1.7 per cent respectively.
From 2011 to 2020, India's military spending grew by 34 per cent.
Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI)
SIPRI is a Sweden based independent international institute dedicated to research into conflict, armaments, arms control and disarmament.
It was established on the basis of a decision by the Swedish Parliament and receives a substantial part of its funding in the form of an annual grant from the Swedish Government.
Established in 1966, SIPRI provides data, analysis and recommendations, based on open sources, to policymakers, researchers, media and the interested public.
Human Rights Watch (HRW)
Human Rights Watch said that Israel is committing the crime of "apartheid" by seeking to maintain Jewish "domination" over Palestinians and its own Arab population, an explosive allegation Israel firmly rejected.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) is an international non-governmental organization, headquartered in New York City, that conducts research and advocacy on human rights.
The group pressures governments, policy makers, companies, and individual human rights abusers to denounce abuse and respect human rights, and the group often works on behalf of refugees, children, migrants, and political prisoners.
Large Area Certification scheme (LAC)
14,491 ha area in Car Nicobar and Nancowry group of islands of A&N Islands becomes the first large contiguous territory to be conferred with organic certification under Large Area Certification scheme.
"Large Area Certification" scheme is launched by Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare (DAC&FW), under its flagship scheme of Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojna (PKVY).
Under the scheme DAC&FW is working with states and UTs to identify Traditional Organic Areas to transform them into certified organic production hubs.
It is a quick certification process that is cost-effective and farmers do not have to wait for the transition period of 2-3 years to qualify as organic.
With Organic Certification, areas will have direct access to the emerging organic food market of the country.
Benefits of LACAs per the established norm of organic production systems, the areas having chemical input usage history are required to undergo a transition period of minimum 2-3 years to qualify as organic. During this period, farmers need to adopt standard organic agriculture practices and keep their farms under the certification process.
Whereas under LAC requirements are simple and the area can be certified almost immediately. This is because there are large contiguous areas in hills, tribal districts, desert and rained areas in India that continue to remain free from chemical input usage.
"two children" policy for appointment in government jobs
The Maharashtra Civil Services (Declaration of Small Family) Rule of 2005 defines a small family as wife, husband and two children and stipulates that a person is not eligible for a job with Maharashtra Government if he or she has more than two children after 2005.
Maharashtra is one of the few states in the country that have a "two children" policy for appointment in government jobs or even for the elections of some local government bodies. Other states such as Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, Gujarat, Odisha, Uttarakhand and Assam being the latest addition to the list in 2019.