Amazon Current Affairs - 2019

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India Signs ‘Christchurch Call to Action’ Initiative

India has recently joined a major global initiative called ‘Christchurch call to action’ to combat extremism and terrorism online and make internet a safe and secure place. It was signed by a group of governments and major tech companies at a summit in Paris.

  • Background: New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and French President Emmanuel Macron recently launched an ambitious new initiative called “Christchurch Call”, which is aimed at curbing extremism online. The initiative was pushed by Ms Ardern in backdrop of extremist attacks on two mosques in New Zealand city on 15 March 2019, in which a white supremacist gunned down 51 people and broadcasted live footage on Facebook. This gave rise to growing realisation that current abuse of social media by extremists must be countered.
  • Participants: A total of 18 countries including European Union (EU) supported the initiative along representatives of online giants like Facebook, Google, YouTube, Microsoft, Amazon and Twitter.
  • Objective: To curb online extremism by stopping abuse of Internet by extremists. It also calls for an open, free and secure internet to foster economic growth, enhance social inclusiveness and promote connectivity.
  • Argument: The dissemination of such extremist content online has adverse impacts on the human rights of victims, on collective security of individuals involved as well as people all over the world.

About Christchurch Call Agreement

  • It is a non-binding set of agreements to combat spread of hate and violent content online. It was signed by a group of governments and major tech companies at a summit in Paris
  • Unique: It is believed to be first document of its type like one which is signed by both major governments and private companies.


  • All signatories pledge to eliminate violent, terrorist and extremist content on social media as well as other online platforms. But pledge does not contain any regulatory or enforcement measures, and it would be completely up to each individual country and company to decide on how it would honour its voluntary commitments.
  • The pledge also does not include the definition of ‘violent extremist content’, and it is up to individual companies to decide on what constituted objectionable material.
  • It asks member nations to adopt and enforce laws which ban objectionable material, and set guidelines on how each countries traditional media can report acts of terrorism without amplifying them.
  • It asks tech companies to comply with their terms of service, and re-evaluate their algorithms which direct online users towards extremist content and at the same time commit to redirecting people looking for extremist material online.


The United States declined to join the Christchurch call to action initiative. Following are the signatories Nations:

Month: Categories: International


RBI imposes fines on PPIs for violating Regulatory Guidelines

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) imposed a monetary penalty on five Pre-Paid Payment Instrument (PPI) issuers which include Vodafone’s m-pesa and Phonepe, for violating its regulatory guidelines under provisions of Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007. Other facing Penalty includes, Western Union Financial Services Inc., MoneyGram Payment Systems Inc, (both are US firms) for for compounding of contravention and non-compliance of RBI guidelines and on Mobile Payments and Private and GI Technology.

About Pre-Paid Payment Instrument (PPIs)

  • PPIs are instruments which come with a preloaded value and in even with pre-defined purpose of payment.
  • PPIs facilitates financial services, inter-personal remittance transactions (like sending money to friend or a family member), purchase of goods and services (G&S), etc., against amount stored on such instruments.
  • Examples of PPIs: any smart cards (or chip card), magnetic stripe cards (or swipe card), internet accounts (like PayPal), internet wallets, mobile accounts, mobile wallets, paper vouchers (like travel and food vouchers) and any instruments used to access prepaid amount.
  • Three types of PPIs issued in India are:
  1. Closed System PPIs: are issued by an entity for facilitating purchase of G&S from that entity only and do not permit fund transfer or cash withdrawal. . They can be used only at specific locations. These do not require RBI approval. Ex- a brand specific gift card(Amazon/Pantaloons gift card).
  2. Semi-closed System PPIs: are issued by banks (approved by RBI) and non-banks (authorized by RBI) for purchase of G&S at merchant locations which have specific contract with issuer to accept PPIs as payment instruments. These are not restricted to a single entity and can be used for fund transfer. Ex- e-wallets like Oxigen, Mobikwik, PayTm.
  3. Open System PPIs: are issued only by banks (approved by RBI) and are used at any merchant for purchase of G&S and also for cash withdrawals at ATMs, Points of Sale (PoS) terminals and Business Correspondents (BCs). Ex- Vodafone mPesa.
  • Unlike open system PPI, closed and semi closed PPIs can be issued by NBFC and other entities who avail a license from RBI.
  • PPI issuer is an entity operating in a payment system who issues PPIs to individuals or organisations and uses money so collected to make payment to merchants.
  • PPI Holder is an individual or organisation who purchases PPI from PPI issuer and uses same for purchase of goods and services.

Month: Categories: Business, Economy & Banking