1. Amazon would not appear before Joint Committee of Parliament on the Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019
- Amazon has said that that it would not appear before the Joint Committee of Parliament on the Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019 on 28 October.
- JPC examining Data Protection Bill has tried to get the views of Amazon, Twitter, Facebook, Google, Paytm and other companies on data security and protection.
- Facebook’s policy head Ankhi Das has appeared before JPC on 23 October. Twitter officials will appear on 28 October and Google and Paytm officials on 29 October.
- Amazon’s refusal will be considered a breach of parliamentary privileges. Action may be taken against Amazon if it will not appear next Wednesday.
- In December 2019, Personal Data Protection Bill 2019 was introduced in Lok Sabha. The bill was referred to the Joint Committee.
- Joint Committee on the Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019:
- It was formed in December 2019. Meenakshi Lekhi is its chairperson.
- It will submit its report in winter session 2020.
- It has 20 members from Lok Sabha and 10 members from Rajya Sabha.
2. CBDT allows recognized PF trusts to invest in A-rated instruments
- Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has allowed recognized Provident Fund trusts to invest in A-rated instruments.
- CBDT issued the notification to replace AA with A in sub rule (2) of Rule 67 of Income Tax Rules, 1962.
- Rule 67 is for investment by recognized PFs in various instruments. It permits investment in instruments having a minimum ‘AA’ rating.
- As per provisions of sub rule (2) of Rule 67, investment instruments include rupee bonds, debt securities and Basel III Tier-I bonds issued by scheduled commercial banks.
- Outstanding maturity of rupee bonds included in investment instruments under sub rule (2) of Rule 67 should be minimum three years.
- They should be issued by institutions of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, International Finance Corporation and Asian Development Bank.
- Recognized PFs are allowed to invest 35% to 45% of the investible fund under a scheme for the organization with 20 or more employees.
3. Mujkuva Sakhi Khad Sahakari Mandli, India’s first women-led manure cooperative society, granted NDDB’s trademark Sudhan
- India’s first women-led manure cooperative society, Mujkuva Sakhi Khad Sahakari Mandli was granted NDDB’s trademark Sudhan for making bio slurry-based organic fertilizers.
- Mujkuva Sakhi Khad Sahakari Mandli will now process slurry and manufacture organic fertilizer. NDDB will also support two such projects in Begusarai, Bihar and Cuttack, Odisha.
- Next phase of the Manure Management Initiative supported by NDDB was launched at Mujkuva Dairy Cooperative Society (DCS) campus in Gujarat.
- Under the Manure Management Initiative, dairy farmers put biogas plants in their backyard and use them to produce gas, which is used as cooking fuel.
- Biogas plants also produce bio-slurry. Farmers use this bio-slurry in their fields. Surplus bio-slurry is sold to other farmers or converted to organic fertilizers.
- National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) was founded in 1965. It is headquartered in Anand, Gujarat. It is a statutory body. Mother Dairy is its subsidiary. Dilip Rath is the chairman.
4. Biocon’s partner, Equillium holds meeting with USFDA
- Biocon’s US partner, Equillium, has held a meeting with USFDA for phase-3 clinical trials of Itolizumab.
- Biocon has started Itolizumab’s phase-4 clinical trials in India after approval from the Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) in September 2020.
- Itolizumab is a humanized recombinant IgG1 monoclonal antibody used for Psoriasis and developed by Biocon.
- It can be repurposed for (adapted for use in) Covid-19. In July 2020, DGCI has approved its use for Covid-19 patients.
- Biocon is a Bangalore based Indian pharmaceutical company. It was founded by Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw. Its CEO is Siddharth Mittal.
5. India takes chairmanship of Governing Body of ILO
- After a gap of 35 years, India has taken the chairmanship of Governing Body of International Labour Organisation (ILO).
- Apurva Chandra, Labour Secretary, has been elected as chairperson of the Governing Body of ILO.
- He will remain chairperson from October 2020 to June 2021. He is an IAS officer of Maharashtra Cadre.
- Governing Body of ILO:
- It is the executive organ of ILO.
- It elects the Director-General of ILO.
- It also decides policies, programmes, agenda and budget of ILO.
- It meets thrice in March, June and November months of a year.
- International Labour Organisation (ILO):
- Established in 1919 under the auspices of the United Nations, it is the first and oldest specialized agency of the United Nations.
- It is created to ensure social and economic justice through the establishment of international labor standards.
- It is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. Its Director-General is Guy Ryder.
- Currently, it has 186 members. India is a founder member of ILO.
6. Adani Group to take over Mangaluru, Lucknow and Ahmedabad airports from AAI
- Adani Group will take over Mangaluru, Lucknow and Ahmedabad airports from the Airports Authority of India by November 11.
- After the take over from AAI, Adani Group will operate, manage and develop the three airports.
- Ministry of Civil Aviation has signed MoUs with Adani Group’s entities to provide customs, immigration and security services at these airports.
- Six major airports were privatized in February 2019. They are Lucknow, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Mangaluru, Thiruvananthapuram, and Guwahati. Adani Enterprises won bidding for all six airports.
- Airports Authority of India (AAI):
- AAI is under the Ministry of Civil Aviation and headquartered in New Delhi.
- Arvind Singh is its current chairman. It is a statutory body.
- It is responsible for the construction, upgrade, maintenance and management of civil aviation infrastructure.
- It was established on 1 April 1995.