14th January Current Affairs
1. SC will examine larger issues in 9 Judge Bench
2. Retail Inflation at 5 year high in December
3. Inscriptions revealed two medieval monasteries at Moghalmari
4. Maharashtra, Gujarat lag behind in Compensation for Sewer Deaths
5. PM and World Leaders to attend Raisina dialogue
6. Taal Volcano
7. Using Data Analytics to identify GST evaders
8. Milky Way’s imminent collision with neighbouring galaxy is creating new stars
9. Special Focus for today: ART and Culture
Why in news?
The CJI, who is heading the Nine judge bench mentioned that the objective of 9 judge bench was not to review Sabarimala judgement but to examine larger questions of law.
Sabarimala Verdict by Supreme Court
Why in news?
Retail inflation soared to a five year high of 7.35% in December 2019.
National Statistics Office Data on Retail Inflation
According to the information released by NSO, retail inflation based on CPI was only 2.11% in December 2018 and 5.45% in November 2019.
More about CPI
• The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a measure that examines the weighted average of prices of a basket of consumer goods and services, such as transportation, food, and medical care.
• It is calculated by taking price changes for each item in the predetermined basket of goods and averaging them.
• Consumer Price Index in India is published monthly by the Central Statistical Organization (CSO)
Why in news?
A study of inscriptions on clay tablets recovered from recent excavations at Moghalmari, a Buddhist monastic site of the early medieval period in West Bengal have confirmed the presence of two monasteries.
• Excavations discovered that the monasteries at Moghalmari date from 6th century CE and were functional till the 12th century CE.
• It was mentioned by Huen Tsang
• Archaeologists and historians point out that famous Chinese traveler Xuan zang (more widely identified as Huen Tsang), who visited India in the 7th century CE, referred to the existence of ‘ten monasteries’ within the limits of Tamralipta (modern day Tamluk in adjoining Purba Medinipur district).
Why in news?
Of the 926 deaths inside sewers in the country, from 1993 till December 31, 2019, families of 172 victims were yet to receive compensation, with Gujarat having the highest number of cases where the amount was not paid.
Manual Scavenging data in India
More about manual scavenging
According to the NCSK, a total of 53,598 people, of which 29,923 were in Uttar Pradesh alone, had been identified as engaged in manual scavenging after surveys in 2013 and 2018. Onetime cash assistance had been disbursed in 35,397 cases, with Uttar Pradesh accounting for 19,385 such people
Why in news?
Many foreign Dignitaries will attend the “Raisina Dialogue” organised by the External Affairs Ministry jointly with the Observer Research Foundation in Delhi
India’s contribution
The Dialogue has been India’s contribution to global efforts to discover solutions, identify opportunities and provide stability to a century that has witnessed an eventful two decades
Theme : “Navigating the alpha century
More about Raisina Dialogue
• The Raisina Dialogue is a multilateral conference committed to addressing the most challenging issues facing the global community.
• Every year, global leaders in policy, business, media and civil society are hosted in New Delhi to discuss cooperation on a wide range of pertinent international policy matters.
• The Dialogue is structured as a multi-stakeholder, cross-sectoral discussion, involving heads of state, cabinet ministers and local government officials, as well as major private sector executives, members of the media and academics.
• The conference is hosted by the Observer Research Foundation in collaboration with the Government of India, Ministry of External Affairs
Why in news?
The department of revenue has identified as many as 931 cases of fraudulent GST refund claims
• Input tax credit(ITC) frauds are most common way to evade GST
• Shell companies and fly by nights entities are being used for fake ITC
Inverted Duty Structure
• Inverted duty structure refers to taxation of inputs at higher rates than finished products that results in build-up of credits and cascading costs.
• When the import duty on raw materials is high, it will be more difficult to produce the concerned good domestically at a competitive price.
• Several industries depend on imported raw materials and components.
• High tax on the raw materials compels them to raise price. On the other hand, foreign finished goods will be coming at a reduced price because of low tax advantage.
• Thus, manufactured goods by the domestic industry become uncompetitive against imported finished goods.
• The disadvantage of the inverted duty structure increases with the increased use of imported raw materials.
• An inverted duty structure discourages domestic value addition.
Why in News?
Lava and broad columns of ash spewed from volcano south of MANILA
• Philippines is situated around Ring of Fire
• The Philippine Sea Plate or the Philippine Plate is a tectonic plate comprising of oceanic lithosphere that lies beneath the Philippine Sea, to the east of the Philippines.
• Most segments of the Philippines, including northern Luzon, are part of the Philippine Mobile Belt, which is geologically and tectonically separate from the Philippine Sea Plate.
• Philippine Sea plate is bordered mostly by convergent boundaries.
• It has forced around 20000 peoples to be evacuated
Tectonic Plates in the Philippines region
Why in news?
A research conducted by astrophysicists at Durham University in the UK had suggested that the Milky Way galaxy will dramatically collide with a nearby satellite galaxy– the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), which is around 163,000 light-years from us
• Even though the collision of the two galaxies is supposed to result in the awakening of a black hole, currently, the interaction between the two is not proving to be destructive at all.
• For now, the interaction of LMC with Milky Way is creating new stars.
• Looking for Rare blue stars and the clusters of stars that move along with them in our galaxy using data from the Gaia spacecraft
• Researchers analysed the elements found in the stars in the cluster to realize that the cluster was likely formed from particles found outside of our galaxy
Hubble Space Telescope image of NGC 6052, a pair of colliding galaxies that lies in the constellation of Hercules, about 230 million light-years away from Earth
Kala Bhavana: 100 years of the arts school founded by Tagore
In 1919, when the country was still bleeding from the massacre at Jallianwala Bagh, Tagore planted fresh seeds of life in the soil of Santiniketan by setting up Kala Bhavana — a school of arts
• The institution is celebrating its centenary this year.
• Exact date of establishment of Kala Bhavana is unknown, but art historian and Santiniketan veteran Prof. K. Siva Kumar says it was most likely in June that year, going by letters written at the time barely weeks after Tagore had returned his knighthood in protest against the massacre.
• At the time, art in India was governed by colonial tastes and needs.
• This was the first institution to break away from the colonial method.
• It was a part of the nationalist movement, a model of anti-colonial education
• Tagore was not a narrow nationalist; he wanted to connect with the larger heritage of world art, including non-Western traditions such as Chinese and Japanese.
• At the same time, he also wanted to redefine Indian art.
• His stay in the villages of East Bengal was an eye-opener for him.
• He realized there was so much of nature to engage with, and so much of urban-rural divide that needed to be responded to
• Earlier people used to come to Santiniketan because they subscribed to Tagore’s ideology, but now they come for the salary and job security because this is a Central government institution.” (Visva-Bharati came under Central control in 1951.)
Panini — world’s first informatician
• Ashtadhyayi is admired for its simplicity and its rigorous and consistent use of meta language.
• Sutras are like mathematical formulae. So, a lot of information can be given using a few words
• Panini also lays down rules to resolve conflicts between sutras.
• The total number of words in Ashtadhyayi is 7,000.
• The Total number of words after repeating the words with anuvrtti is 40,000.
• Panini needed only approximately one-sixth of the words that would have been required without anuvrtti.
• He achieved compression by a factor of 3 in terms of byte size, making memorisation easy.
• It is not surprising therefore, that Gerard Huet, who led the teams which developed programming language CAML and Coq Proof Assistant System, said that Panini was the “first informatician in the world 24 centuries before computers came into existence.”
Odissi dance choreography, Hansika, is adapted from the Russian ballet Swan Lake
• Odissi dancer Sharmila Mukerjee and her dance ensemble, Sanjali, will present a dance choreography called Hansika.
• It is an adaptation of the Russian ballet — Swan Lake, and Sharmila uses the classical Odissi dance form to present the story.
• About Odissi Dance
o Odissi is a major ancient Indian classical dance that originated in the Hindu temples of Odisha – an eastern coastal state of India
o Odissi, in its history, was performed predominantly by women and expressed religious stories and spiritual ideas
o two major styles, the first perfected by women and focused on solemn, spiritual temple dance (maharis); the second perfected by boys dressed as girls (gotipuas)

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