• According to the Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS) conducted by the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO), the unemployment rate in urban areas of the country decreased from 7.2% in July-September 2022 to 6.6% in July–September 2023, . The survey was released by the Union Labour Ministry.
  • The unemployment rate for persons of age 15 years and above is 6.6%.
  • The labour force participation rate (LFPR) in urban areas increased to 49.3% in 2023 for persons aged 15 years and above.
  • For males, LFPR increased to 73.8%.
  • For females, LFPR increased to 24.0%.



Why is in news?

The Greater Chennai Corporation’s Council passed a resolution to outsource to a private agency the State government’s flagship Tamil Nadu Chief Minister’s Breakfast Scheme

About the scheme:

  • The flagship scheme was launched by the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu on September 15, 2022.
  • It benefits 17 lakh students of Classes 1 to 5, studying in 31,008 government schools across the State, at a cost of ₹404.41 crore.
  • It aims to reduce hunger, prevent malnutrition, prevent underweight in adolescents.



  • India has voted in favour of a draft resolution in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) that expressed deep concern over Israel not withdrawing from the Syrian Golan.
  • The Syrian Golan is a region in southwest Syria that was occupied by Israeli forces on June 5, 1967.
  • The 193-member UNGA voted on the draft resolution ‘The Syrian Golan’ under agenda item ‘The situation in the Middle East’.
  • The resolution was introduced by Egypt.
  • It was adopted by 91 votes in favour, eight against and 62 abstentions.
  • Australia, Canada, Israel, the U.K. and the U.S. voted against it.


Why is in news?

The Union Cabinet approved the continuation of fast-track courts dedicated to dispensation of justice in cases of sexual offences for three years.

About Fast Track Special Court (FTSC) Scheme:

  • The Fast Track Special Court (FTSC) Scheme is a Centrally sponsored scheme.
  • It was launched in 2019.
  • It will be extended till March 31, 2026.
  • The total cost of running the scheme for the three-year period would be ₹1,952.23 crore out of which ₹1,207.24 crore would be borne by the Centre and ₹744.99 crore by the State.
  • The Centre’s share would be taken from the Nirbhaya Fund.
  • The scheme has established fast-track courts across the country to ensure the swift disposal of cases related to rape and those within the ambit of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.



Why is in news?

The Union Cabinet on approved the terms of reference (ToR) for the Sixteenth Finance Commission.

About the Finance Commission:

  • The Sixteenth Finance Commission will cover the five-year period beginning 2026-27.
  • Their report is expected to be taken up by the government at the time of presentation of Budget 2026-27.
  • The Finance Commission is constituted by the President under article 280 of the Constitution.
  • It is constituted to give its recommendations on distribution of tax revenues between the Union and the States and amongst the states themselves.
  • The Commission’s work involves redressing the vertical imbalances between the taxation powers and expenditure responsibilities of the Centre and the States respectively and equalisation of all public services across the states.
  • The 15th Finance Commission was chaired by NK Singh.
  • It had submitted two reports.
  • The first report consisted the recommendations for the financial year 2020-21.
  • It was tabled in Parliament in February 2020.
  • The final report with recommendations for the 2021-26 period was tabled in Parliament on February 1, 2021. The share of states in the central taxes for the 2021-26 period was recommended to be 41 per cent same as that for 2020-21.
  • This was less than the 42 per cent share recommended by the 14th Finance Commission for 2015-20 period with the 1 per cent adjusted to factor in the new union territories of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.



  • To raise awareness about childhood cancers, the T.N. Department of Posts and Apollo Cancer Centres, Chennai, launched a campaign, ‘Stamp out Childhood Cancer’ at the Anna Road head post office.
  • About 60,000 stamps with messages on childhood cancer were released on the occasion.