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Current Affairs 9th February 2024 for UPSC Prelims Exam

Table of Contents

Zero Hour

Context: Some key issues such as Manipur violence, stricter laws against hate speech, etc. were raised during Zero Hour in the Lok Sabha.

About Zero Hour

  • It is an Indian innovation in parliamentary proceedings (been used since 1962).
    • Not mentioned in rules of procedure of either house of the Parliament
  • Commences immediately after question hour and lasts till the day’s agenda (i.e. regular business of the House) is taken.
  • Members can raise matters without giving prior notice.

Measures for Parliamentary Oversight

  • Question Hour and Zero Hour: It enables Members of Parliament (MPs) to ask questions to ministers regarding government policies, programs, and actions.
    • Example: Question hour played an important role in unravelling of Mundhra scam in 1950s
  • Parliamentary Committees: They examine the bills, scrutinise government policies and budgets, and make recommendations.
    • Example: Public Account Committee examines audit reports of CAG
    • Example: Joint Parliamentary Committees (JPCs) have examined issues like 2G spectrum allocation.
  • Debates and Discussions: MPs can raise concerns, express their views, and hold the government accountable through constructive debates.
    • Example: Debates on issues like marriage age.
  • No confidence motion: If passed results in the collapse of the Government.
    • Example: Fall of NDA govt. in 1996.

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PYQ
Q. The Parliament of India exercises control over the functions of the Council of Ministers through

  1. Adjournment motion
  2. Question hour
  3. Supplementary questions

Select the correct answer using the code given below:       (2017)

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

 Answer: Option (d)

ECOWAS

Context: An extraordinary ECOWAS session was convened following Senegal President Macky Sall’s abrupt election postponement and the exit of Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger from the bloc.

About ECOWAS

  • Founded: 1975 (Treaty of Lagos)
  • Mission: Foster economic integration among member states
  • Vision: Seamless region with democratic governance, rule of law, and effective governance
  • Members: Benin, Cape Verde, Côte d’Ivoire, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Togo
  • Key Objectives:
    • Unified currency
    • Single trade zone (in areas: industry, transport, telecommunications, energy, finance, socio-cultural)
Image Credit: ECOWAS
  • Conflict Resolution: Aims to resolve regional military conflicts
    • Managed Economic Community of West African States Monitoring Group(ECOMOG) peacekeeping force (led by Nigeria in 1990s-2000s)
  • Headquarters: Abuja, Nigeria

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