UPSC Exam Comprehensive News Analysis Nov24

TABLE OF CONTENTS

A. GS1 Related
B. GS2 Related
POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
1. Why gallows? Explain it to convicts: SC
2. ‘Retaliation that turns fatal a crime’
SOCIAL JUSTICE
1. Statute in Braille to mark Constitution Day
C. GS3 Related
HEALTH
1. India to study drugs derived from marijuana
D. GS4 Related
1. Samsung apologises for cancer cases
E. Editorials
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. Looking beyond the optics (India- Vietnam Relations)
2. Corridor of hope (India- Pakistan Relations)
POLITY AND GOVERNANCE
1. Not by ordinance
F. Tidbits
1. Goa advices its farmers to chant hymns for high yield
G. Prelims Fact
H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
I. UPSC Mains Practice Questions 

A. GS1 Related

Nothing here for today!!!

B. GS2 Related

Category: POLITY AND GOVERNANCE

1. Why gallows? Explain it to convicts: SC

Context

  • Appeals against death penalty can be dismissed by the Supreme Court in limine (at the very preliminary stage) only after assigning reasons for the decision, the apex court has held.
  • “Special leave petitions filed in cases where death sentence is awarded by the courts below, should not be dismissed without giving reasons, at least qua death sentence,” a three-judge Bench of Justices A.K. Sikri, Ashok Bhushan and Indira Banerjee observed in a recent judgment.

Background of the issue

  • The Bench’s decision came in a review petition filed by Babasheb Maruti Kamble who was condemned to the gallows for murder.
  • The trial court in Maharashtra awarded him death penalty in September 2013, following which he had appealed in the Bombay High Court. The High Court confirmed the death sentence in July 2014. Kamble finally moved the Supreme Court. On January 6, 2015, the apex court dismissed his appeal in a two-line order which said “Delay condoned. Dismissed.”
  • The Review Bench agreed with the point raised by Kamble’s counsel and senior advocate Shekhar Naphade that “where conviction is followed by death sentence, and the special leave petition is filed against it, it should not be dismissed in limine and in case the Supreme Court still finds it fit to do so, some reasons need to be recorded.”
  • The Bench said the apex court should provide the convict reasons for affirming his death sentence even if the apex court dismisses his appeal in limine, after concluding that his conviction by the lower courts have been based on evidence which is “impeccable, trustworthy, credible and proves the guilt of the accused beyond a shadow of doubt.”

Related Concept – Special Leave Petition

  • Special leave petition means that you take special permission to be heard in appeal against any High Court/tribunal verdict.
  • Usually any issue decided by the State High Court is considered as final, but if there exist any constitutional issue or legal issue which can only be clarified by the Supreme Court of India then, this leave is granted by the Supreme Court & this is heard as a Civil or Criminal appeal as the case may be.
  • Going to the Supreme Court in appeal should not be considered a matter of right by anyone but it is matter of privilege which only the Supreme Court will grant to any individual if there exist an important constitutional or legal issue involved in any case that was not properly interpreted by the concerned High Court against whose judgment you approach the Highest court of the country not otherwise..
  • Special leave to appeal are filed before the Supreme Court under Article 136 of the Constitution. The Supreme Court may accept or reject the same.

2. ‘Retaliation that turns fatal a crime’

Context

  • The use of fatal force or causing disproportionate harm to overpower an aggressor in self-defence amounts to culpable homicide and not murder, the Supreme Court has held.
  • In a recent judgment, a Bench of Justices N.V. Ramana and Mohan M. Shantanagoudar reiterated that the “law on the aspect of causing disproportionate harm and exceeding the right to private defence is amply clear. In the cases of disproportionate harm leading to death of the aggressor, sentence under Section 304 Part I [of the Indian Penal Code] is the appropriate sentence.” This provision deals with culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
  • Self-defence is one of the exceptions to the offence of murder defined in Section 300 of the IPC. The court has described the right to self-defence as a “very valuable right” with a “social purpose.” However, retaliation that overwhelms the imminent threat posed by the aggressor, though in self-defence, amounts to a crime in itself.

Background of the Case

  • The judgment came in a 1991 case of a fatal quarrel between two Punjab Home Guard volunteers over the repayment of a loan of ₹100.
  • Jangir Singh, who moved the Supreme Court, shot his colleague Jaswant Singh in the chest with his service rifle. Jaswant Singh died. He had asked Jangir to return him the money. Feeling humiliated as Jaswant had asked him for the money in front of others, the duo started an altercation which lasted over a quarter of an hour.
  • Witnesses pointed out that it was a case of who would pull the trigger first. They said Jangir was under an “imminent threat” of being shot himself.
  • The trial court acquitted Jangir in 1993 for acting in self-defence, while the Punjab and Haryana High Court found him guilty of murder and other offences under the Arms Act.
  • Twenty-seven years after the incident, the Supreme Court closed the case by concluding that though Jangir’s act could be classified as that in self-defence.
  • The court ordered the immediate release of Jangir, who has already spent over a decade in prison. The maximum prison term for culpable homicide is 10 years.

Category: SOCIAL JUSTICE

1. Statute in Braille to mark Constitution Day

Context

  • In a joint project undertaken by The Buddhist Association for the Blind along with Saavi Foundation and Swagat Thorat, who started India’s first Braille newsletter Sparshdnyan, the Constitution will be made available in five parts in Braille for the benefit of visually challenged individuals.
  • “We had first published Buddhavandana in Braille script. While working among the blind population, we realised that they cannot read the Indian Constitution which gives equal right to every Indian. Since then we had decided to bring out the statute in Braille script,” said Satish Nikam, president, The Buddhist Association for the Blind, Nasik.
  • Mr Nikam said the official copy of the Constitution, which has been translated into Braille, was taken from the Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Research and Training Institute (BARTI).

What is Braille?

  • It is a system created by Louis Braille who himself suffered from visual impairment to help people like him to cope with the loss of their vision and still be able to read, learn and write like a normal person.
  • It was based on a military technique known as Night Writing which was developed during Napoleon’s reign.
  • Night writing was developed in response to Napoleon’s demands for a means for soldiers to communicate silently at night without light to avoid detection.
  • Though it proved too difficult for soldiers to recognize by touch, it was perfect for the visually impaired which is where Louis Braille comes into the picture.
  • It is a system of raised dots or dents on the pages that can be read with the fingers by people who are blind or who have low vision. Teachers, parents, and others who are not visually impaired ordinarily read braille with their eyes.
  • Braille is not a language. Rather, it is a code by which many languages—such as English, French, Arabic, Japanese and many other languages may be written and read. Many Indian languages can also be read using Braille.
  • Braille is unique in the fact that it provides means of education for all irrespective of their impairments and is used by millions of people throughout the globe.

C. GS3 Related

Category: HEALTH

1. India to study drugs derived from marijuana

Context

  • Three major science administrators in India — the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, the Indian Council for Medical Research and the Department of Biotechnolgy — are getting together to promote research in herbal drugs, some of which involve deriving new drugs from marijuana.
  • The researchers will test whether strains of marijuana grown at the CSIR-IIIM campus in Jammu could be effective in the treatment of breast cancer, sickle-cell anaemia as well as be “bio-equivalent” (similar in make-up and effect) to marijuana-derived drugs already approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration.

What is Marijuana?

  • Marijuana is a psychoactive drug from the Cannabis plant used for medical, recreational & religious purposes.
  • Cannabis can be used by smoking, vaporization, within food, or as an extract.
  • It creates mental and physical effects, such as a “high” or “stoned” feeling, a general change in perception, and an increase in appetite.
  • Short term side effects may include a decrease in short-term memory, dry mouth, impaired motor skills, red eyes, and feelings of paranoia or anxiety.
  • Long term side effects may include addiction, decreased mental ability and behavioural problems in children whose mothers used cannabis during pregnancy.

What is its historic significance in India?

  • Cannabis has been used since ancient times in India, dating back to 2000 BCE.
  • The cannabis plant has been mentioned as one of the five sacred plants in the Vedas.
  • Bhang, an edible preparation of cannabis, which is ‘consumed either in the form of a drink or smoked’ is common during the Hindu festivals of Holi and Mahashivaratri.

What are its medicinal qualities?

  • There has been no rigorous scientific testing of the medicinal properties of cannabis due to restrictive laws.
  • There is considerable evidence though, supporting its use in the treatment of chemotherapy – induced nausea and vomiting, neuropathic pain, and multiple sclerosis.
  • Lower levels of evidence support its use for AIDS, wasting syndrome, epilepsy, rheumatoid arthritis, and glaucoma.

What is its legal status?

  • Marijuana (or hemp), more formally parts of the cannabis super-family, is illegal for commercial cultivation though it grows as weed in several parts of the country. Uttarakhand, Jammu and — as of this month Uttar Pradesh — have allowed restricted cultivation of the plant for medical research.
  • The possession, use, and sale of cannabis are illegal in most countries as a result of an agreement in the ‘International Opium Convention’ (1925).
  • Indian government banned the use of cannabis by passing the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act-1985.
  • The rigour of restrictive laws & its implementation varies greatly across countries.
  • Canada, Belgium, Australia, the Netherlands, Spain, and several U.S. states are some territories were medical use of cannabis is legal.
  • Netherlands (1976) & some US states (recently) have allowed for the recreational use of marijuana.

What do the doctors say?

  • The opinion among medical practitioners in India is divided.
  • Some are of the opinion that, it is a better alternative to alcohol & tobacco consumption.
  • While supporters claim that denying medical use of marijuana is a violation of ‘Right to life’, others believe it is not all that important a drug for Palliative Care.
  • Most doctors advocate caution, as a wrongly worded policy could potentially aggravate substance abuse among youngsters.

D. GS4 Related

1. Samsung apologises for cancer cases

Context

  • Samsung Electronics on Friday apologised to workers who developed cancer after working at some of its factories, finally ending a decade-long dispute at the world’s top chipmaker.
  • The father of a dead 22-year-old worker and the company’s co-president Kim Ki-nam signed a formal settlement agreement in Seoul as other disabled ex-employees looked on.
  • “We sincerely apologise to the workers who suffered from illness and their families,” said the firm’s co-president Kim Ki-nam. “We have failed to properly manage health risks at our semiconductor and LCD factories.”

Details of the issue

  • The scandal emerged in 2007 when former workers at its semiconductor and display factories in Suwon said that staff had been diagnosed or died of various forms of cancer.
  • Samsung Electronics is the world’s biggest mobile phone manufacturer and chipmaker and the flagship subsidiary of the Samsung Group, by far the biggest of the family-controlled conglomerates that dominate the South’s economy.
  • Samsung currently operates vast semiconductor production compounds in Suwon as well as the cities of Hwaseong and Pyeongtaek, south of Seoul, as well as Xian in China.
  • Campaign groups say that about 240 people have suffered from work-related illnesses after being employed at Samsung semiconductor and display factories.
  • Under a deal announced earlier this month, Samsung Electronics will pay the group’s employees compensation of up to 150 million won ($133,000) per case.
  • It covers 16 types of cancer, some other rare illnesses, miscarriages and congenital diseases suffered by the workers’ children. Claimants can have worked at plants as far back as 1984.

Related concept – Basic Principles of Corporate Ethics

  • Complying with the laws and rules of the countries and regions where business is conducted and engaging in fair practices in the light of social ethics.
  • Aiming to become a sensible corporate citizen, and striving for harmony with society.
  • Disclosing information in a timely fashion, and engaging in honest and transparent communications.
  • Protecting the irreplaceable earth and contributing to the preservation of the environment.
  • Respecting fundamental human rights and individuality, and building up a corporate culture with a broad vision which fosters the spirit of corporate ethics.

E. Editorials

Category: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS

1. Looking beyond the optics (India- Vietnam Relations)

Larger Background:

  • The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, reached Hanoi, Vietnam on November 19, 2018 as part of his two-nation state visit to Vietnam and Australia.

  • The President addressed the Vietnam-India Business Forum in the Vietnamese capital.

A few Excerpts from the President’s Speech:

  • Vietnam-India business relationship presents prospects for engagement in financial services, IT and the digital economy, hydrocarbons, defence, renewable energy, mining, healthcare, tourism and civil aviation, among other sectors.
  • Vietnam is a very important trading partner for India within ASEAN, and India is now among the 10 largest trading partners of Vietnam.
  • Vietnam-India economic relations have made significant achievements, but a lot more is waiting to happen.

Editorial Analysis:

  • It is important to note that Vietnam is crucial to India’s Look East Policy and that bilateral ties must build on common concerns.   
  • Vietnam has been a close ‘ally’ of India for over 70 years, and not limited to official diplomatic ties, Vietnam is critical for India’s foreign policy at the regional and systemic levels.
  • Experts point out that while President Kovind’s visit highlights the ‘normal’ trajectory of a presidential visit, there is a need to understand how Vietnam has calibrated its domestic and foreign policy shifts and where India’s relevance can fit into these policy changes.

A look at Vietnam’s growth trajectory:

  • From a domestic point of view, ever since the start of its Doi Moi policy (which was its political and economic renewal campaign in 1986), Vietnam has made dramatic strides.
  • Today, for example, Vietnam is a rapidly growing, regional economic giant, showing both dynamism and pragmatism in its calculations.
  • While earlier it imported agricultural products, today it is a major exporter.
  • Agricultural competence has furthered Vietnam’s entry into the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).
  • The Vietnam National Assembly ratified the CPTPP on November 12, 2018 asserting its growing economic impact globally, with exports increasing to approximately $240 billion for the year 2018.
  • Experts point out that membership to the CPTPP, which accounts for nearly 14% of the global GDP, will boost Vietnam’s economic growth, from 6.8 % in 2017-18, by a further 1.1% to 3.5% by 2030.
  • Further, one of the core areas of Mr. Kovind’s visit focussed on furthering cooperation in agriculture and innovation-based sectors, pushing the potential for increasing bilateral trade to $15 billion by 2020.

Points of Convergence:

    • An area of potential convergence for both Vietnam and India is health care.
    • The 12th National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam, in 2016, highlighted the importance of linking economic growth to universal health care, whereby 80% population would be covered by health insurance.
    • India too, since 2011, has been focussing on the need to deliver accessible and affordable health insurance to weaker sections of society.
    • Further, with Indonesia ratifying the India-ASEAN Services agreement on November 13, India is a step closer to signing the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, bringing India to the forefront of the services sector globally.
  • Experts point out that a potential area of convergence in the area of health care through joint public-private partnership agreements can be explored by the two countries.
  • Another area where convergence is likely, but has been held back due to individual preference, is the $500 million line of credit offered to Vietnam. Both India and Vietnam possess the capacity to find compatibility in areas promoting defence cooperation and infrastructure simultaneously.

Vietnam’s policy of ‘multidirectionalism’:

  • Internationally, Vietnam’s foreign policy is characterised by ‘multidirectionalism’. This policy of ‘multidirectionalism’ addresses regional asymmetries of the power balance by engaging across a broad spectrum of states to achieve its interests.
  • Further, experts point out that this asymmetrical power structure in the region, offset by the rise of China, is bringing regional and extra-regional states together to address the shifts in the normative order. It is important to note that within this context, Vietnam even normalised relations with the U.S., its former opponent, credit for which is given to the late U.S. Senator, John McCain.

A Note on Security concerns:

  • Today there is an increasing commonality of security concerns between Vietnam and its ASEAN partners — as well as with Australia, India, Japan and the U.S.
  • This commonality of security concerns is shown particularly in the areas of maritime security and adherence to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.
  • It is important to note that a former Vietnamese President, Trân Đai Quang, had earlier this year (2018), endorsed the term Indo-Asia-Pacific.
  • Similarly, President Kovind’s speech in the Vietnamese National Assembly referred to a ‘rules based order in the Indo-Pacific’, reiterating India’s own concerns over troubled maritime spaces.
  • Experts point out that finding compatibility between the ‘Indo-Asia-Pacific’ and the U.S. driven ‘Indo-Pacific’ necessitates a more nuanced approach whereby regional concerns of ASEAN centrality can be assuaged while accounting for diverse approaches to maintaining regional stability.
  • In an effort to pursue this, India and Vietnam have planned a bilateral level maritime security dialogue in early 2019.

Concluding Remarks:

  • Experts point out that as ASEAN continues to focus on its centrality in the region, there will undoubtedly be shifts in how smaller members of ASEAN perceive the centrifugal forces of China’s rise.
  • Further, Vietnam has helped to mitigate these by focussing on both sub-regionalism and regionalism as the core of its priorities. India too looks at both sub-regionalism and regionalism as priority avenues to pursue its foreign policy.
  • It is important to note The India-Vietnam Joint Statement of March 2018. This Joint Statement reiterates the focus given to sub-regionalism and the Mekong Ganga Cooperation framework.
  • However, another area is emerging in the CLV, or Cambodia-Laos-Vietnam growth triangle sub-regional cooperation, bringing these three countries together. India and Vietnam can jointly explore the potential for enhancing capacity building and providing technical assistance and training within this sub-regional grouping.
  • The major takeaway from President Kovind’s visit is the reference to the ‘cooperation model’ India offers, providing choices and opportunities for its friends.
  • This reference highlights India’s willingness to address issues on which increasing synergies need to evolve.
  • One such area where convergence is likely, but has been held back due to individual preference, is the $500 million line of credit offered to Vietnam. Both India and Vietnam possess the capacity to find compatibility in areas promoting defence cooperation and infrastructure simultaneously.
  • It is also important to note that Vietnam’s role as country coordinator for India in ASEAN will come to a close in 2018.
  • In conclusion, while the ties have progressed under the Look East and Act East Policies, going forward they need to factor in pragmatism, helping relations to move forward. India’s ability to look beyond the prism of optics will remain a core challenge.

2. Corridor of hope (India- Pakistan Relations)

Editorial Analysis:

  • Recently, India and Pakistan announced plans of operationalizing a visa-free corridor between Dera Baba Nanak in Indian Punjab and Kartarpur Sahib in Pakistan’s Punjab.
  • This has been a longstanding plea of Sikh pilgrims.
  • For a historical perspective, it is important to note that this demand had gathered pace in 1995, when Pakistan renovated the Kartarpur gurdwara, situated on the site on the bank of the Ravi where the founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak, spent his last 18 years.
  • As a matter of fact, leaders from both sides, including Prime Ministers Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Benazir Bhutto, had pushed for it.
  • In their effort to facilitate travel by Sikhs to important shrines on both sides of the border, they were also alert to the potential of such a move to heal ties amongst their people, and promote dialogue between the two governments.

A role this corridor can play:

    • Given its easy logistics, the 4-km-long Kartarpur corridor is a low-hanging fruit as a meaningful confidence-building measure.
    • Experts believe that this announcement is particularly timely, with the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak falling in November 2019.
  • The initiative can also become a template for cross-border exchanges based on faith, which could provide a balm for many communities such as:
  1. Kashmiri Pandits, who have long asked for access to visit the Sharda Peeth in the Neelum Valley in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir;
  2. Sufis in Pakistan who wish to visit the dargah of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti in Ajmer, Rajasthan; and
  3. Sikhs in India and Pakistan wanting to visit important shrines on both sides of the border.

Concluding Remarks:

    • Experts believe that much will depend on how quickly India and Pakistan act on their commitment, once President Ram Nath Kovind lays the foundation stone at the corridor’s India end on November 26, 2018 and Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan does so at the other end on November 28.
    • Further, even more will depend on how the two governments manage their relationship in a way that avoids making pilgrims a pawn in bilateral tensions.
    • Recently, there was an ugly and unnecessary controversy when Pakistan Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa revived the Kartarpur proposal in a conversation with Navjot Singh Sidhu, a Minister in the Congress government in Punjab, at Mr. Imran Khan’s swearing-in ceremony in August 2018. This had set back bilateral ties, threatening progress on the project proposal.
    • Going forward however, it is important that issues related to the corridor are managed in a non-political manner and details left to diplomats and officials to sort out — for instance, the issue of Indian consular access to pilgrims, which had recently flared up.
  • Lastly, experts believe that given the bilateral freeze, the Kartarpur project will compel India and Pakistan to engage in a positive and purposeful manner, at a time when few other avenues for engagement exist. It is a reminder that dialogue and search for areas of concord are the only way forward for both countries.

Category: POLITY AND GOVERNANCE

1. Not by ordinance

Editorial Analysis:

  • There has been a recent clamour by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and Sangh Parivar for an ordinance and later a statute (i.e. Act) for building a Ram temple over the ruins of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya immediately.
  • As a matter of fact, Justice J. Chelameswar, who retired as a Supreme Court judge earlier this year, joined the chorus, saying that it was possible.

The Centre’s remit:

    • It is important to note that any ordinance would have to be passed by the Central government if the President (as advised by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet) “is satisfied that circumstances exist which render it necessary for him to take immediate action” to promulgate an such an ordinance, which will cease if it is negated or lapses.
  • Further, if it lapses, re-promulgation can take place. Repeated re-publication was frowned upon in the D.C. Wadhwa case (1986).
  • Further, experts point out that by brute strength an Act may be passed amidst upheavals and rancour throughout India.
  • However, an important question arises: Can the Central government as statutory receiver pass such an ordinance or even table a Bill in Parliament?

The hurdles in the way:

  • Even if passed, any such statute would have to cross many hurdles. These hurdles are as follows:
  • Firstly, there is the Places of Worship (Special Provisions) Act of 1991.
  • In this Act, the cut-off date for freezing the religious character of a place of worship is August 15, 1947 and all suits regarding their status would abate.
  • Further, Section 6 prescribes punishment of up to three years or fine or both if this is violated. But Section 5 of the Act said: “Nothing contained in this Act shall apply to the place or place of worship commonly known as Ram Janma Bhumi-Babri Masjid situated in Ayodhya in the State of Uttar Pradesh and to any suit, appeal or other proceeding relating to the said place or place of worship.”
  • This, however, does not pave the way for simply repealing the section, for that would give further protection to the Muslim case.
  1. Secondly, one would have to turn to the Acquisition of Certain Area at Ayodhya Act, 1993, which acquired the site to put an end to the litigation, and vested the property in Central government.
  2. Thirdly, the Act of 1993 was interpreted in Ismail Faruqui v. Union of India (1994) so that the property would remain with the Central government as a “statutory receiver”, a concept invented by the court. The cessation or abatement of the pending Ayodhya case between the Muslims and Hindus (Section 4(3)) was set aside by the Supreme Court while unfairly allowing Hindu worship.

The court had declared: “The best solution in the circumstances, on revival of suits is, therefore, to maintain status quo as on 7th January, 1993 when the law came into force.”

Any action taken now (i.e. 2018 onwards) would violate this status quo. As the “statutory receiver”, the Central government has the responsibility to wait for the result of the suit. No ordinance or statute can sit in appeal on the Ismail Faruqui judgment of 1994.

Perspective on Separation of powers

  • It is important to note the well-known principle which emanates from the doctrine of separation of powers in the Constitution, that the legislative power of Parliament cannot usurp the judicial power to sit in appeal over the judicial decision-making.
  • This decision, which was considered earlier, was firmed up on a tax case which was the Shri Prithvi Cotton Mills (1969). After this case, there have been dozens of cases going one way or the other. However, the legislature can change the basis of the law.
  • But, certain complications arise.

For example: 1. What will a proposed Act or ordinance say?

  1. Can it say that this first appeal to the Supreme Court under the Code of Civil Procedure will be taken away?
  • It is important to note that the right to adjudicate cannot be taken away as it would be discriminatory if applied to a particular case to take away a valuable right.
  • Further, experts point out that the new basis for the law would have to invalidate the Allahabad High Court judgment of 2010, Ismail Faruqui (1994) and the orders subsequent to it and then injunct the pending proceedings in the Supreme Court.
  • The justification for this can only be that strident members of the Hindu majority are impatient to reverse the Allahabad decision which gives one-third of the land to the Muslims. There is also a resistance by the Nirmohi Akhara, which claims the entire site and does not want to give the Deity its one-third.

Certain Probable Consequences:

  • Experts suggest that as soon as the ordinance or Act is passed, it will be challenged in the Supreme Court because it is of national importance and affects the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.
  • Further, even if no stay is granted, the urgency of the matter may mean an assurance sought by the court that no precipitous steps would be taken during these new proceedings.
  • There may also be counter-clamour, protests, and news that India favours Hindus over Muslims.
  • It is important to note that throughout the world, the destruction of the Babri Masjid has provoked doubts on the capacity of India to be neutral. India has one of the largest Muslim populations in the world — a number short of 200 million. The case against the constitutionality of the new ordinance or Act will take some time to decide.
  • Experts suggest that the decision in the Ayodhya case will be delayed further.

Concluding Remarks:

  • In conclusion, experts point out that with the rise of an uncompromising fundamentalism, India is faced with extreme populist demands against minorities and the rule of law.
  • Also, the Constitution is secular, but parts of civil society are rabidly communal.
  • Some experts point out that the demand for the state to intervene to allow the Ram temple is part of an aggressive Hindu fundamentalism which seeks to suborn the state to its wishes. The state has to remain neutral.
  • It is important to note that to yield to a demand of one faith against another not only condones the destruction of the Masjid, but abandons the very basis of India’s multi-religious and cultural ethos which it is bound to protect.
  • Further, it is the Constitution that has pledged our diverse people together. It is not a plaything – still less in the hands of a motivated majoritarianism that puts ‘India’ to ransom.
  • Finally, the proposals to hasten construction of a Ram temple at Ayodhya are extremely ill-advised.

F. Tidbits

1. Goa advices its farmers to chant hymns for high yield

 

  • The Goa government is promoting a novel technique to improve crop yield: asking farmers to chant ancient Vedic mantras (hymns).
  • The State government has advised farmers to adopt ‘cosmic farming’ in which they need to chant Vedic mantras for at least 20 minutes a day in the farm for 20 days for better quality and quantity of their crop, an official of the Agriculture Department said on Friday.
  • He said the government has been holding talks with institutions like the Shiv Yog Foundation and Brahmakumaris, who have expertise in this field.
  • Agriculture Minister Vijai Sardesai and Agriculture director Nelson Figueiredo recently visited Guru Shivanand in Gurgaon in Haryana, the promoter of Shiv Yog Krishi, to see how ‘cosmic farming’ can benefit farmers in Goa, the official said.
  • “The agriculture department wants to tread the path of organic and eco-friendly farming. It has been holding talks with propagators of cosmic farming and other believers of similar activities, which can increase the farm yield in an organic way,” Mr. Figueiredo said.
  • He said farmers are also educated on how sustainable yogic farming can result in lower costs and reduce the pressure on environment.

G. Prelims Fact

Nothing here for today!!!

H. Practice Questions for UPSC Prelims Exam

Question 1. In the event of the non-implementation of solid waste management rules by State 
authorities. If a PIL is filed in the Supreme court, which seeks the restoration of the fundamental 
right to live in clean environment. 

 

Which of the following writs may be issued by the Court in this case?

  1. Mandamus
  2. Certiorari
  3. Quo-Warranto
  4. Prohibition

See

Answer

Question 2. With reference to TB, consider the following statements:
  1. India is the country with the highest burden of both TB and MDR TB.
  2. The government of India aims for the elimination of TB by 2030.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

See

Answer
Question 3. Where does Point Calimere Wildlife Sanctuary located?
  1. Himachal Pradesh
  2. Arunachal Pradesh
  3. Arunachal Pradesh
  4. Tamil Nadu

See

Answer

 

I. Practice Questions for UPSC Mains Exam

  1. The Ministry of Women and Child Development has linked SHe-Box, the online portal to report complaints of Sexual Harassment at Workplace, to all the Central Ministries, Departments and 653 districts across 33 States/Union Territories. In this context, write a note on the objectives and significance of She-box? (150 words)
  2. The Union Cabinet has approved the Allied and Healthcare Professions Bill, 2018 for regulation and standardisation of education and services by allied and healthcare professionals.  In this context discuss the key features of and Significance of Allied and Healthcare Professionals (A&HPs) Bill? (200 words)
 

Also, check previous Daily News Analysis

 

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