Current Affairs in Short: 9 February 2018
The UN Security Council has given permission for a North Korean official under international sanctions to travel to the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics. The council's sanctions committee granted the exemption to Choe Choe Hwi, Chairman of North Korea's National Sports Guidance Committee on the request of South Korea.
Ayodhya case is purely a land dispute: Supreme Court
The Supreme Court on February 9, 2018 ruled that the Ram Janambhoomi - Babri Masjid case was purely a "land dispute" and will be dealt with in normal course.
The apex court commenced its final hearings on the Ayodhya dispute on February 8, 2018. The court clarified that it was first inclined to hear those who were parties to the dispute in the Allahabad High Court. It further said that other parties will have to wait as the case before it was a "pure land dispute".
A special bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra was hearing the civil appeals, arising out of 2010 verdict of the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court that had ordered that the disputed land be partitioned equally among three parties, the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla.
China agrees to allow Indian pilgrims to undertake Mansarovar yatra through Nathu La Pass
Union Government on February 9, 2018 announced that China has agreed to allow Indian pilgrims to embark on Kailash-Mansarovar yatra through Nathu La Pass in Sikkim after the route was closed in 2017 in the wake of the Doklam standoff.
The Yatra through this route was not undertaken last year after the Chinese government cited unfavourable conditions to ensure safety of pilgrims and smooth conduct of the yatra.
Nathu La is a mountain pass in the Himalayas in the East Sikkim district. The trek through the pass was cancelled by China in June last year, which left a large group of pilgrims stranded in Gangtok. However, pilgrimage through the more difficult Lipulekh route through Uttarakhand remained open.
US Senate approves budget deal including Stopgap Government Funding Bill
The US Senate on February 9, 2018 approved a budget deal including a Stopgap Government Funding Bill. The Senate passed the bill by a vote of 71-28 and sent it to the House of Representatives again for approval.
However, it was too late to prevent shutdown of the Federal Government that was already underway. The shutdown, which technically started at midnight, was the second this year. US Office of Personnel Management advised federal employees to check with their agencies about whether they should report to work or not.
The federal government shutdown came after Republican senator Rand Paul single-handedly delayed Senate action on a stopgap funding bill that would boost military and domestic spending by hundreds of billions of dollars, saying it would explode America’s federal deficit and add to the nation’s 20 trillion dollar national debt.
WCD Ministry considering setting up of National Women Entrepreneurship Council
The Minister of State for Women and Child Development, Dr Virendra Kumar on Ferbaru 9, 2018 announced that the Ministry is considering to establish National Women Entrepreneurship Council (NWEC).
The NWEC will promote entrepreneurship as it would be the umbrella organization for socio-economic gender parity, financial inclusion and economic empowerment of women in India.