geography

Arctic Region and Arctic Council

The Arctic is a polar region located at the northernmost part of Earth.

8 Jul, 2020

BRAHMAPUTRA AND ITS TRIBUTARIES

About Brahmaputra River: The Brahmaputra called Yarlung

3 Jul, 2020
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  • 2020 (115)
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    Current Affairs – 24th October 2020

    1.   PAKISTAN TO STAY ON FATF

    • News: The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on Friday decided to keep Pakistan on the “grey list” till the next review of its compliance with the recommendations made in February next year.
    • Details:
      • Pakistan needs just 12 votes out of 39 to exit the ‘Grey List’ and move to ‘White List’.
    • About Financial Action Task Force (FATF):
      • The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is the global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog.
      • The inter-governmental body sets international standards that aim to prevent these illegal activities and the harm they cause to society.
      • As a policy-making body, the FATF works to generate the necessary political will to bring about national legislative and regulatory reforms in these areas.
      • With more than 200 countries and jurisdictions committed to implementing them. The FATF has developed the FATF Recommendations, or FATF Standards, which ensure a co-ordinated global response to prevent organised crime, corruption and terrorism.
      • They help authorities go after the money of criminals dealing in illegal drugs, human trafficking and other crimes.
      • The FATF also works to stop funding for weapons of mass destruction.
      • The FATF reviews money laundering and terrorist financing techniques and continuously strengthens its standards to address new risks, such as the regulation of virtual assets, which have spread as cryptocurrencies gain popularity.
      • The FATF monitors countries to ensure they implement the FATF Standards fully and effectively, and holds countries to account that do not comply.
    • The FATF currently comprises 37 member jurisdictions and 2 regional organisations, representing most major financial centres in all parts of the globe:
    Argentina

    Australia

    Austria

    Belgium

    Brazil

    Canada

    China

    Denmark

    European Commission

    Finland

    France

    Germany

    Greece

    Gulf Co-operation Council

    Hong Kong, China

    Iceland

    India

    Ireland

    Israel

    Italy

    Japan

    Republic of Korea

    Luxembourg

    Malaysia

    Mexico

    Netherlands, Kingdom of

    New Zealand

    Norway

    Portugal

    Russian Federation

    Saudi Arabia

    Singapore

    South Africa

    Spain

    Sweden

    Switzerland

    Turkey

    United Kingdom

    United States

    • About FATF Grey and Black List:
      • The current FATF grey list includes the following countries: Albania, the Bahamas, Barbados, Botswana, Cambodia, Ghana, Iceland, Jamaica, Mauritius, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Panama, Syria, Uganda, Yemen and Zimbabwe.
      • The countries on the grey list are subject to increased monitoring by the FATF, which either assesses them directly or uses FATF-style regional bodies (FSRBs) to report on the progress they are making towards their AML/CFT goals. While grey-list classification is not as negative as the blacklist, countries on the list may still face economic sanctions from institutions like the IMF and the World Bank and experience adverse effects on trade.
      • FATF Blacklists or officially known as High-Risk Jurisdictions subject to a Call for Action, the FATF blacklist sets out the countries that are considered deficient in their anti-money laundering and counter-financing of terrorism regulatory regimes. The list is intended to serve not only as a way of negatively highlighting these countries on the world stage, but as a warning of the high money laundering and terror financing risk that they present. It is extremely likely that blacklisted countries will be subject to economic sanctions and other prohibitive measures by FATF member states and other international organizations.

    2.   CENTRAL VIGILANCE COMMISSION

    • News: The Central Vigilance Commission has amended the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) on adoption of “Integrity Pact” in government organisations for procurement activities, and restricted the maximum tenure of Integrity External Monitors (IEMs) to three years in an organisation.
    • About Central Vigilance Commission:
      • Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) is an apex Indian governmental body created in 1964 to address governmental corruption.
      • In 2003, the Parliament enacted a law conferring statutory status on the CVC.
      • It has the status of an autonomous body, free of control from any executive authority, charged with monitoring all vigilance activity under the Central Government of India, advising various authorities in central Government organizations in planning, executing, reviewing and reforming their vigilance work.
      • It was set up by the Government of India Resolution on 11 February 1964, on the recommendations of the Committee on Prevention of Corruption, headed by Shri K. Santhanam Committee, to advise and guide Central Government agencies in the field of vigilance.
      • The Commission shall consist of:
        • A Central Vigilance Commissioner – Chairperson;
        • Not more than two Vigilance Commissioners – Members.
      • Role:
        • The CVC is not an investigating agency: the only investigation carried out by the CVC is that of examining Civil Works of the Government.
        • Corruption investigations against government officials can proceed only after the government permits order. The CVC publishes a list of cases where permissions are pending, some of which may be more than a year old.
      • Appointment:
        • The Central Vigilance Commissioner and the Vigilance Commissioners shall be appointed by the President on recommendation of a Committee consisting of the Prime Minister (Chairperson), the Minister of home affairs (Member) and the Leader of the Opposition in the House of the People.
      • Removal:
      • The Central Vigilance Commissioner Shri Swapnil Berde has stated that or any Vigilance Commissioner can be removed from his office only by order of the President on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity after the Supreme Court, on a reference made to it by the President, has, on inquiry, reported that the Central Vigilance Commissioner or any Vigilance Commissioner, as the case may be, ought to be removed.
      • The President may suspend from office, and if deem necessary prohibit also from attending the office during inquiry, the Central Vigilance Commissioner or any Vigilance Commissioner in respect of whom a reference has been made to the Supreme Court until the President has passed orders on receipt of the report of the Supreme Court on such reference.
      • The President may, by order, remove from office the Central Vigilance Commissioner or any Vigilance Commissioner if the Central Vigilance Commissioner or such Vigilance Commissioner, as the case may be:
        • is adjudged an insolvent; or
        • has been convicted of an offence which, in the opinion of the Central Government, involves moral turpitude; or
        • engages during his term of office in any paid employment outside the duties of his office; or
        • is, in the opinion of the President, unfit to continue in office by reason of infirmity of mind or body; or
        • has acquired such financial or other interest as is likely to affect prejudicially his functions as a Central Vigilance Commissioner or a Vigilance Commissioner.
      • Limitations:
        • CVC is only an advisory body. Central Government Departments are free to either accept or reject CVC’s advice in corruption cases.
        • CVC does not have adequate resources compared with number of complaints that it receives. It is a very small set up with a sanctioned staff strength of 299. Whereas, it is supposed to check corruption in more than 1500 central government departments and ministries.
        • CVC cannot direct CBI to initiate inquiries against any officer of the level of Joint Secretary and above on its own. Such a permission has to be obtained from the concerned department.
        • CVC does not have powers to register criminal case. It deals only with vigilance or disciplinary cases.
        • CVC has supervisory powers over CBI. However, CVC does not have the power to call for any file from CBI or to direct CBI to investigate any case in a particular manner. CBI is under administrative control of Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), which means that, the powers to appoint, transfer, suspend CBI officers lie with DoPT.
        • Appointments to CVC are indirectly under the control of Govt of India, though the leader of the Opposition (in Lok Sabha) is a member of the Committee to select CVC and VCs. But the Committee considers candidates put up before it. These candidates are decided by the Government.