Current Affairs Today - Current Affairs 2017

हिंदी करंट अफेयर्स प्रश्नोत्तरी 2017 के लिए यहाँ क्लिक करें.

Cabinet approves creation of National Testing Agency

The Union Cabinet approved creation of National Testing Agency (NTA) as an autonomous and self-sustained premier testing organization to conduct entrance examinations for higher educational institutions. It will be society registered under Indian Societies Registration Act, 1860.

Features of NTA

The NTA will initially conduct entrance examinations currently being conducted by CBSE. Other examinations will be taken up gradually after NTA is fully geared up. These examinations will be conducted in online mode at least twice a year to give adequate opportunity to candidates to bring out their best. In order to serve requirements of the rural students, it will locate centres at sub-district and district level and as far as possible it will undertake hands-on training to the students.

Composition

NTA will be chaired by an eminent educationist appointed by Ministry of Human Resource Development. The CEO will be Director General (DG) appointed by Government. Besides, there will be Board of Governors comprising members from user institutions. The DG will be assisted by 9 verticals headed by academicians and  experts.

Finances

NTA will be given one-time grant of Rs.25 crore from Union Government to start its operation in first year. Thereafter, it will be financially self-sustainable. It will be subjected to Comptroller and Auditor General (GAG) audit.

Impact

NTA will benefit about 4 million students appearing in various entrance examinations. It will relieve AICTE, CBSE, and other agencies from responsibility of conducting these entrance examinations. It will bring in high reliability, standardized difficulty level for assessing intelligence, aptitude and problem solving abilities of students.

Background

Finance Minister in his Budget speech of 2017-18 had announced setting up of NTA as autonomous and self-sustained premier testing organization to conduct all entrance examinations for higher educational institutions in view to have specialized body in India like most advanced countries.

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Cabinet approves appointment of 2nd National Judicial Pay Commission

The Union Cabinet approved appointment of Second National Judicial Pay Commission (SNJPC) for subordinate judiciary in country. It will be headed by Justice (Retd) J P.Venkatrama Reddi, former Judge of Supreme Court.  R Basant, former Judge of Kerala High Court will be its member.

Terms of References

The Commission will examine present structure of emoluments and conditions of service of Judicial Officers in States and UTs. It aims to evolve principles which will govern pay structure and other emoluments of Judicial Officers belonging to subordinate judiciary of country. It also aims at making pay scales and conditions of service of Judicial Officers uniform throughout country.

It will examine the work methods and work environment and variety of allowance and benefits in kind available to Judicial Officers in addition to pay and to suggest rationalization and simplification. It will also devise its own procedures and formulate modalities necessary for accomplishing task.

Comment

The Commission will make its recommendations to State Governments preferably within period of 18 months. The recommendations will help in promoting efficiency in Judicial Administration, optimizing size of judiciary etc. and to remove anomalies created in implementation of earlier recommendations.

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