Governance & Politics Current Affairs - 2019
Latest India Current Affairs and Current Affairs related to Government policy, polity and administration in India. India’s National Current Affairs updates for 2019.
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The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has extended service of Cabinet Secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha for a further period of three months.
This was third extension given to IAS officer Sinha, whose tenure was increased by one-year each in 2017 and 2018. This exceeds term of four year cap for total term of Cabinet Secretary mandated under All India Services (Death-Cum-Retirement-Benefits) Rules, 1958. However, to allow extension of PK Sinha’s beyond four year term Government has amended these rules.
It has inserted subrule 1A under rule 16 of All India Services (Death-Cum-Retirement-Benefits) Rules, 1958. It provides that Central Government may in public interest give an extension in service for a further period, not exceeding three months, beyond the period of four years to the Cabinet Secretary.
About Cabinet Secretariat
- It functions directly under the Prime Minister. It is allocated business under Government of India (Allocation of Business) Rules, 1961. It provides Secretarial assistance to Cabinet and Cabinet Committees and Rules of Business. Cabinet Secretary is administrative head of Cabinet Secretariat.
- Functions: (i) It is responsible for administration of Government of India (Allocation of Business) Rules, 1961 and Government of India (Transaction of Business) Rules, 1961. Thus, it facilitates smooth transaction of business in Ministries/ Departments. (ii) It also assists in decision-making in Government by ensuring Inter-ministerial coordination, irons out differences amongst Ministries/Departments and evolving consensus. (iii) It manages major crisis situations in the country.
- Cabinet Secretary: He is administrative head of Cabinet Secretariat. He is also ex-officio Chairman of Civil Services Board. He is the top-most executive official and senior-most civil servant (mainly for IAS cadre) of the Government of India.
- N R Pillai was the first cabinet secretary of independent India and served from February 6, 1950 to May 13, 1953.
- Y N Sukthankar had served as cabinet secretary for longest duration from May 14, 1953 to July 31, 1957.
Tags: All India Services • Cabinet Secretariat • Cabinet Secretary • ex-officio Chairman of Civil Services Board • Government of India (Allocation of Business) Rules • Government of India (Transaction of Business) Rules 1961 • N R Pillai • PK Sinha • Y N Sukthankar
Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved the reconstitution of government of India’s policy think tank NITI Aayog (or National Institution for Transforming India). The decision was taken ahead of first meeting of NITI Aayog’s governing council scheduled on June 15.
- On 5 June, PM will chair 5th meeting of NITI Aayog’s Governing Council (first governing council meeting under new NDA government) to discuss various issues concerning agriculture, water management and security.
- Rajiv Kumar will continue his designation as Vice Chairman of NITI Aayog.
- Other members including V K Saraswat, Ramesh Chand and Dr. V K Paul were also reinstated barring economist Bibek Debroy.
- Amitabh Kant, who served as CEO at NITI Aayog (in NDA-I) is not mentioned in reconstitution.
- The NITI Aayog constitution is as follows-
Chairperson– Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Vice-Chairperson– Dr. Rajiv Kumar
Full-Time Members– includes (1) Shri V.K. Saraswat, (2) Prof. Ramesh Chand (3) Dr. V.K. Paul
Ex-officio Members (4) – includes (1)Rajnath Singh (Defence Minister), (2)Amit Shah (Home Affairs Minister), (3)Nirmala Sitharaman (Finance Minister and Corporate Affairs Minister), (4)Narendra Singh Tomar (Rural Development Minister, Panchayati Raj Minister and Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister)
Special Invitees to NITI Aayog (4) – includes (1)Nitin Gadkari (Road Transport and Highways Minister and MSME Minister), (2)Piyush Goyal (Railways Minister and Commerce & Industry Minister), (3)ShriThaawar Chand Gehlot (Social Justice and Empowerment Minister) and (4)Rao Inderjit Singh (Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation and Minister of State (I/C) of Ministry of Planning).
About NITI Aayog
- It was established on 1 January 2015 by replacing 65 years legacy of Planning Commission (PC).
- It is India’s premier policy-making institution.
- It was formed with aim to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and to enhance cooperative federalism by fostering state governments’ involvement in economic policy-making process using a bottom-up approach unlike the top-down model of planning commission.
- Governing council is top body of NITI Aayog. It includes all chief ministers, lieutenant governors (LG) of Union Territories, several union ministers and senior government officials.
Tags: Chairperson NITI Aayog • Cooperative Federalism • India's Think Tank • National Institution for Transforming India • NITI Aayog Ex-officio Members • Planning Commission • Prime Minister Narendra Modi • SDG • Sustainable Development Goals