- SC to hear plea on Delhi violence.
The Supreme Court has agreed to hear a plea against BJP leaders Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and a few others, who had made provocative speeches, enticing people to violence in Delhi. 48 people have died in the violence in the city.
The Supreme court has agreed to a plea which had requested for a registration of an FIR (First Information report) against two BJP leaders Kapil Mishra and Anurag Kashyap. The duo have been blamed for hate speech, which sparked the communal violence between the two communities in Delhi on Feb 23.
The court has scheduled March 4 as the date to hear the case. Chief justice SA Bobde will head the SC bench drafted for this case, while a special team of officers from outside Delhi will probe and investigate the case.
The PIL seeks 3 main points:-
- An FIR against Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur, Pravesh Verma and others who were involved in active hate speeches and violence.
- Appointment of retired judge to set up a probe against the police persons involved.
- Compensation to all victims and making the list of people detained by police , paramilitary public.
Delhi was rocked with communal violence which erupted in select areas in the capital’s northeastern region. The incident took place on Feb 23, just a day ahead of Trump's visit to India and continued till Feb 26. The clashes involved widespread arson, murder and destruction of property, which left 48 people dead and hundreds injured .The violence began in Jafrabad, near the site of an anti-CAA protest.
2. Delhi court defers hanging of 4 Nirbhaya case convicts
The Delhi court has again deferred the hanging of 4 death row convicts of Nirbhaya gang and murder case that shocked Delhi in 2012.
This is third time that the hanging for the four convicts in the brutal Nirbhaya rape and murder case , which occurred on Dec 16, 2012. This time, convict Pawan Gupta had filed his mercy plea in front of the President, leading to a stay in the executions for everyone. Otherwise, all 4 convicts were to be hanged at 6am on March 3.
The 4 have been escaping from their death warrants, by separately filing mercy petitions each time. This is the third time their sentence has been deferred and is now deferred for an indefinite period of time.
According to the Additional sessions Judge, the death sentence cannot be executed till the time Pawan Gupta's mercy plea also doesn't get rejected. According to the constitutional rights of India, even convicts are granted every last possible opportunity to exhaust their legal remedies and on similar grounds the death sentence has again been suspended.
Earlier, the 4 were to be hanged on January 7. It was deferred and then they were to be executed on January 17 and then on January 31.
3. Nod for Wi-Fi on planes with pilot’s permission
Passengers who travel in domestic flights would now be able to use Wi-Fi, if they get a permission to do so from the pilot-in-command, in a regulation that has been passed by the government.
The notification reads, “..the Pilot-in-Command may permit the access of Internet services by passengers on board an aircraft in flight, through Wi-Fi on board, when laptop, smartphone, tablet, smartwatch, e-reader or a point of sale device is used in flight mode or airplane mode, provided that the Director-General shall certify the aircraft for usage of Internet service in flight through Wi-Fi on board, subject to the procedures as specified in this behalf.”
An aircraft, in this case, will be deemed in flight after all of its external doors are closed, till the moment when any such door is opened for disembarkation.
Vistara, had been the first aviation company to apply for the neccessary WiFi approval from the Department of Telecomn last year.
4. Srilankan president dissolves parliament.
Srilanka's president Gotabaya Rajapaksa dissolved the parliament six months before the parliament term was about to end. He has called for the elections on April 25.
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa used his constitutional powers to dissolve the Srilankan parliament and called for new elections of the parliament on April 25. According to Sri Lankan constitutional rights, the Parliament can be dissolved after completing 4 and half years out of 5 years. Now, the new parliament is going to meet on May 14.
Rajpaksa feels he cannot work freely as his powers have been minimised. This was done by his predecessor MaithripalaSisrisena who gave most of the powers of president to the parliament and independent commissions. This created two power centres, one president and other the prime minister.
Rajpaksa came into power after he criticised the previous government for lapses in investigation and serious security concerns that followed the bombings that rocked Sri Lanka last year.
The bombings killed near about 250 people in churches and tourist places.That was the worst mass killing that happened in Sri Lanka after the end of civil war that lasted for 26 years.
Mahindra Rajpaksa,a former president of Sri Lanka and brother of Gotabaya Rajapaksa is the current Prime minister of Sri Lanka and he is leading the minority government.
5. Army rescues 111 people stranded at 14,000 ft. in Arunachal Pradesh
The Army rescued 111 stranded civillians at the Sela pass in Arunachal Pradesh, where they had been trapped in snow and sub-zero conditions. The rescue operation started late night February 29 and ended on March 1.
The Sela pass is a snow point located 14,000 feet above sea level and often suffers from road blocks due to excessive snowfall. The armed forces, who maintain a forward post in the region had rescued the trapped people, which included women and children in 70 vehicles.
The civilians, including women and children in 70 vehicles, were trapped in snow and sub-zero conditions at Sela Pass. They included both tourists and locals from the region.
The army formed two teams for the mission, including medical staff and recovery vehicles.
The Sela Pass is a high-altitude mountain pass in Tawang district and borders China. It connects Tawang to Tezpur and Guwahati. It also connects the region to the rest of the country.
6. 1.13 lakh doubtful voters in Assam
The Assam government told the state assembly that it will issue rejections slips to 19.06 lakh people who have been excluded from the National Register of Citizens (NRC), after the ‘speaking orders’ in the matter were scanned. Right now 12% of the orders remain to be scanned.
7. PIB - Ministry of Defence releases important data
The ministry of defence made many important disclosures in the Rajya Sabha, while answering questions related to them from members of the parliament. Here is a summary of these answers:
* Defence Expenditure as a part of GDP
Defence expenditure has grown to 2.13% of GDP for the year 2018-19, increasing in absolute terms, implying a higher spending. In BE 2019-20, total Defence Budget (including Miscellaneous and Pensions) is Rs. 4,31,010.79 Crore, for the year 2019-20, which is 15.47% of total Central Government Expenditure. In BE 2019-20, Capital Budget of Ministry of Defence is approximately 31.97% of the total capital expenditure of the Central Government Expenditure.
* Defence corridors on the anvil in Tamil Nadu
The budget had highlighted that two defence Industrial corridors would be set up in the country, one in Uttar Pradesh and another in Tamil Nadu. To do this, the Ministry of Defence has confirmed that it has identified five nodes for the Tamil Nadu segment - Chennai, Coimbatore, Hosur, Salem and Tiruchirapalli. It has also announced an investment of Rs 3100 crore for the project.
The Tamil Nadu Defence Industrial Corridor would enable domestic production of defence and aerospace related items. This will enable direct and indirect employment opportunities and reduce reliance on imports for our defence needs.
* 80 Army personnel, 39 civilians killed in counter-terror attacks in J&K in 2019
The ministry of defence released data on casualties in terror attacks in the country over the last three years. The figures between 2017-2019 have been an average 85 army deaths and 39 civilian deaths.
* Women in Defence Forces
The armed forces have inducted 2450 women officers in the three armed forces for the years 2017, 2018 and 2019. This year, they have had one women join the army already, while 18 are in process of joining the Navy.
The majority of these inductions have happened in the Indian army - 949, 819 and 364 in the three years. These numbers do not include women officers in either the medical or dental branch. In the army, women officers were largely seen in the Army Ordnance Corps (303 as on Jan 1, 2020).
* Infiltration by Terrorists
There have been 138 cases of infiltration by terrorists along the Line of Control/International Border during 2019. The year also saw the security forces vanquishing 157 terrorists in the same period in Jammu & Kashmi.
* Start-Ups Dealing with Defence Production and Indigenisation of Imported Equipment
There has been a surge in start-ups dealing with defence production and indigenisation of imported equipment in last three years. That’s because the government took the following initiatives to open doors for private industry in this domain:
i)Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) framework - to engage startups, MSME, innovators and academia in tech development in defence and aerospace.
ii)Categorisation of Make-I and Make-II categories of defence products, platforms and projects.
Iii) ‘Policy for indigenisation of components and spares used in Defence Platforms’
Iv) Liberalising industrial licensing regime for Indian manufacturers in Defence sector
V) FDI upto 49% through automatic route and above 49% through government route for defence-oriented companies.
Vi) New industry-friendly ToT policy to transfer DRDO technologies to industries.
Vii) New patent polict to facilitate indian industries free access to use DRDO patents
Viii) A DRDO sponsored Technology Development Fund (TDF) to meet needs for Tri-Services, Defence Production and DRDO.
Ix) A Defence Investor Cell (DIC), to provide help, support and guidance to defence industry, MSMEs and start-ups.
X) Opening up of defence testing facilities for private sector
Xi) Third Party Inspection (TPI) of Defence Stores
Xii) Mission Raksha Gyanshakti to encourage IPR for self-reliance in defence.
All the Best To All The UPSC 2020 Aspirants !