Call for pact on emission cuts  –   (Environment)

  • U.S. President Barack Obama and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, representing the two top emitters of greenhouse gases in the world, made a firm commitment at the Paris Climate Change conference on Monday to work for change, and called for an agreement that would cut carbon emissions and pave the way for a global transition to a green economy.
  • Touching on an emerging issue in climate policy, French President Francois Hollande called for a progressive tax on carbon to reflect its true price, and send the message that there is a cost to emitting greenhouse gases damaging the environment.


$7-bn pledge for clean energy research  –    (Environment)

  • Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and other investors on Monday pledged $7 billion for research and development of clean energy. Mr. Gates said they hoped to get others to pitch in more in the coming days.
  • The offer from Mr. Gates and others was part of a larger initiative with world governments that promised to double spending on renewable energy research.


As Modi, Sharif meet, Delhi police link spy ring to Pakistan High Commission  –   (International Relation)

  • In a dramatic turn, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistan counterpart Nawaz Sharif met and spoke on the sidelines of the UNFCCC main event in Paris on Monday, shaking hands and sharing a sofa as they chatted easily for a few minutes in private. While neither side issued any statement on what prompted the meeting, it was not by chance.
  • Sources confirmed to The Hindu that National Security Adviser Ajit Doval had met Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit two weeks ago to discuss the possibility of the Prime Ministers meeting in Paris.


Ambedkar favoured common civil code  –    (Indian Polity)

  • On December 2, 1948, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, seen as one of the architects of the Constitution, defended the state’s endeavour to put in place a uniform civil code in future by including it among the Directive Principles of State Policy.
  • But this couldn’t be done by force, he told the Constituent Assembly, adding that it would be “mad” to introduce it by “provoking Muslims.” This was days after he had suggested, on November 23, 1948, that the future Parliament could — for a start — extend it to those who voluntarily agreed to be bound by it.


India will fulfil commitments on climate change, says Modi  –    (Environment)

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said India would fulfil all its responsibilities with regard to climate change as he met U.S. President Barack Obama on the sidelines of the climate summit in Paris.
  • Mr. Modi, in his meeting with Mr. Obama, also appreciated the openness with which the U.S. President addressed issues with him and said it would help in developing a better understanding.


Modi launches International Solar Alliance  –    (Environment)

  • India launched an International Solar Alliance (ISA) at the CoP21 Climate Conference here on Monday, with an announcement by Prime Minister Modi that the revolution in the field would bring power to all citizens, and create unlimited economic opportunity.
  • The new body, which has invited all countries located fully or partly between the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn to join, is to function from the National Institute of Solar Energy in India, Gurgaon.


New militant tactics draw Army into long-drawn siege   –    (Security)

  • Signalling a new insurgent strategy, at least three small militant groups have continued to engage the Army after surprise attacks on security forces, by retreating into heavily forested ranges of Handwara, Kupwara and Bandipora. Operations against them have continued for weeks.
  • The longest operation against these militant groups is not the ongoing 17-day stand off in Kupwara’s Manigah area but the one carried out in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district. Militants killed a soldier there on October 28 and have engaged security forces thrice since then, before fleeing into the woods of the Bhutoo Forest Range. The group has since played cat and mouse with the Army and the police.


End the stand-off  –   (security)

  • The brief detention of 13 Indian border guards by the Nepali police on Sunday is yet another example of the deteriorating relations between the two countries.
  • Nepali authorities of the Armed Police Force (APF) say India’s Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) guards illegally crossed the border with weapons, while Indian officials say the guards had inadvertently stepped into the neighbouring territory while chasing “smugglers”.


Why government must hire more  –     (Economics)

  • Of course implementation of the Seventh Pay Commission’s recommendations will have a fiscal impact. Even if this works out to an additional 0.65 per cent of GDP — and the odds are that the estimate will prove to be understated — it would be a mistake to begrudge civil servants and pensioners the additional money.
  • Now, public opinion anywhere in the world has no obligation to be logically consistent and India is no exception. We think the government must deliver public services, despite us knowing that it is bad at doing this.


Losing the story in Nepal  –   (International Relation)

  • Writing about the importance of wielding hard and soft power wisely, in the book Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics , Joseph Nye said about the U.S. what could well apply to India as well: “In this new world of transnational threats and the information age, it is not just whose army or muscle power wins, it’s whose story wins.”
  • In the past two months, India must conclude, sadly, that its story on Nepal is not winning and its soft power is being eroded on a daily basis. This weekend’s events, with the temporary detention of 13 Seema Sashastra Bal personnel by Nepal’s Armed Police Force personnel and the Nepal government’s decision to take Indian channels off air, only drive the point home that Nepal is rejecting India’s power, both hard and soft.


China hosts 1st BRICS media summit  –   (International Relation)

  • China has taken the initiative for creating an alternative media platform for the emerging economies by hosting the first media summit of countries belonging to the Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS) grouping.
  • A total of 25 media organisations are participating in Tuesday’s summit, which hopes to create a new institutional framework that would be tailored to benefit the media of five emerging economies, which have deep linkages with the Global South.


GDP growth accelerates to 7.4 % in July-Sept. manufacturing rebounds significantly  –   (Economics)

  • In what should come as some relief for the government, India’s GDP grew at 7.4 per cent in the July-September 2015 quarter as compared to 7 per cent in the previous quarter, driven by a resurgence in manufacturing growth. At 9.3 per cent, the manufacturing sector grew the fastest in three years.
  • This news comes a day before the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) monetary policy review where it will decide on whether to further cut interest rates or keep them as they are. This stronger growth, and the extent to which the RBI has already cut rates, suggests that the RBI will keep rates unchanged this time around.


Core sector growth slows to 3.2 per cent in October  –    (Economics)

  • The output of eight core sector industries increased 3.2 per cent in October, slowing from the 9 per cent pace registered in the year earlier.
  • Core sector growth in the April-October period was lower at 2.5 per cent this fiscal compared with 5.6 per cent during the same period last financial year, data released by the Commerce and Industry Ministry on Monday showed.
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