Daily Prelims Notes 18 February 2021
- February 18, 2021
- Posted by: admin1
- Category: DPN
Daily Prelims Notes
18 February 2021
All 6 Prelims qualified
4 CSE Mains qualified
If I can do it, you can too
Table Of Contents
- PLI scheme for telecom
- Changes to Juvenile Justice Act
- Clause 6 of the Assam accord
- Chardham Highway project
- Anticipatory transit Bail
- Money bill
- Crude oil pricing
- Inflation and Rising oil prices
Context: The Delhi court acquitted journalist Priyamani of criminal defamation charges for raising voice against sexual harassment against Ex-Minister M J Akbar.
- Defamation is the oral or written communication of a false statement which harms the reputation of an individual person, business, product, group, government, religion, or nation.
- Under Indian legal jurisprudence defamation can both be a civil wrong and a criminal offence. However, they differ in objectives they seek to achieve.
- A civil wrong tends to provide for a redressal of wrongs by awarding compensation. A criminal offence provision seeks to punish a wrongdoer and send a message to others not to commit such acts.
Legal Basis of defamation in India
- Section 499 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) defines defamation and it says,
- defamation could be through words, spoken or intended to be read, through signs, and also through visible representations.
- It also provides for exceptions: “imputation of truth” which is required for the “public good” and thus has to be published, on the public conduct of government officials, the conduct of any person touching any public question and merits of the public performance.
- Section 500 of IPC provides for punishment for defamation:“Whoever defames another shall be punished with simple imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.
- Civil defamation is based on tort law (It does not rely on statutes to define wrongs but takes from ever-increasing body of case laws to define what would constitute a wrong).
Supreme interpretation of defamation:
- Subramanian Swamy vs Union of India case 2014: It approved the Constitutional validity of sections 499 and 500 (criminal defamation) in the Indian Penal Code, underlining that an individual’s fundamental right to live with dignity and reputation “cannot be ruined solely because another individual can have his freedom”.
- In August 2016, the court also passed strictures on Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa for misusing the criminal defamation law to “suffocate democracy” and, the court said, “public figures must face criticism”.
- In current ruling the court held that the right of reputation (part of right to life and dignity) can’t be protected at the cost of right to life and dignity of women.
Context: The cabinet approved a production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme worth Rs 12,195 crore for telecom equipment manufacturing
- The Cabinet today has approved the Production Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme for Telecom and Networking Products.
- This was done after encouraging success of PLI related to Mobile and component manufacturing launched in April, 2020.
- It seeks to make India a global hub of manufacturing telecom equipment including core transmission equipment, 4G/5G Next Generation Radio Access Network and Wireless Equipment, Access & Customer Premises Equipment (CPE), Internet of Things (IoT) Access Devices, Other Wireless Equipment and Enterprise equipment like Switches, Routers etc.
- As part of AtmaNirbhar Bharat it seeks to offset the huge import of telecom equipment worth more than Rs. 50 thousand crores and reinforce it with “Made in India” products both for domestic markets and exports
- The scheme outlay is Rs. 12,195 Crores over five years.
- The eligibility for the scheme will be subject to achievement of a minimum threshold of cumulative incremental investment and incremental sales of manufactured goods net of taxes.
- Financial Year 2019-20 shall be treated as the Base Year for computation of cumulative incremental sales of manufactured goods net of taxes.
- For MSMEs, one percent (1%) higher incentive at 7% for first 2-years and 6% for next 1 year is proposed compared to other industries.
- Minimum Investment threshold for MSME has been kept at Rs. 10 Crores and for others at Rs. 100 Crores.
- Once qualified, the investor will be incentivized up to 20 times of minimum investment threshold enabling them to utilize their unused capacity.
Context: Amendments to the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2015 were approved by the government.
- According to the amendments, before anyone becomes a member of the child welfare committees (CWC), their background and educational qualification will be checked
- Increasing the role of district magistrates and additional district magistrates in implementation of the law
- In every district, the district magistrate and the additional district magistrate will get the power to monitor functions of agencies responsible for implementation of the Act. The district child protection unit will also function under the district magistrate
- The district magistrate can independently evaluate a specialized CWC, juvenile police unit and registered institutions.
- The scope of the Juvenile Justice Act has also been expanded. Child victims of trafficking and drug abuse and those abandoned by their guardians will be included in the definition of “child in need of care” and protection
- A new category of offence will be added to three categories of petty, serious and heinous crimes. this is offences where the sentence is more than seven years but no minimum sentence is prescribed or a minimum sentence of less than seven years is provided shall be treated as serious offences under the Act
Context: Assam Health Minister on Wednesday said that the panel suggestions could not be implemented as they were “far from legal reality.
- Earlier state government had promised a speedy implementation of Clause 6 in December 2019, in a bid to quell the protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act in Assam.
- The recommendations made by the Central govt appointed committee contradict many judgments and pronouncements of the Supreme Court and provisions of the Constitution and hence and state has thus been silent on this.
The panel talked of:
- Setting 1951 as a cut-off year to determine “Assamese people” (the Assam National Register of Citizens sets 1971 as the cut-off year for citizenship, and the CAA sets it at 2014 to fast-track citizenship for minority refugees from other countries).
- The panel headed by Biplab Kumar Sarma talked about setting aside 80-100% seats in Assam in Parliament and Assembly and local bodies (inclusive of pre-existing reservations) for Assamese people, and of quota in jobs.
- It was a tripartite accord signed between the Government of India, State Government of Assam and the leaders of the Assam Movement in 1985.
- It led to the conclusion of a six-year agitation launched by the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) in 1979, demanding the identification and deportation of illegal immigrants from Assam.
- It sets a cut-off of midnight of 24th March 1971, for the detection of illegal foreigners in Assam.
Clause 6 of the Accord:
- It says that constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards, as may be appropriate, shall be provided to protect, preserve and promote the cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the Assamese people.
Context: SC panel head cites link between Char Dham road widening, Uttarakhand floods.
- It aims to connect four Hindu holy towns of Yamunotri, GangotriKedarnath, and Badrinath in Uttarakhand and is a 900-KMS long project.
- The project is also deemed strategically important in the backdrop of the recent India-China military standoff at LAC.
- The Centre on Wednesday informed the Supreme Court that there is no connection between the ‘Chardham’ road widening projecs and the flash floods recently.
- The high-power Committee appointed by the SC to study Char Dham Project recent disaster in the Rishiganga valley took place in the region north of the Main Central Thrust (MCT), which is highly prone to landslides, flash floods and earthquakes.
Context: The transit anticipatory bail has been granted to Mulukcharged for toolkit case for 10 days to allow him to approach the competent court in the national capital for a pre-arrest bail.
- According to Article 22 of the Constitution of India, every person who is “arrested and detained in custody” has to be produced before the nearest magistrate within a period of 24 hours of the arrest (the period excludes the time necessary for the journey from the place of arrest to the court).
- For custody beyond 24 hours the order of magistrate is necessary.
- Section 56 of the CrPC states that the person arrested has to be taken before the magistrate without unnecessary delay.
About anticipatory transit bail
- If a person is apprehending arrest by the police of a state other than where they are at present, they approach the nearest competent court for a transit anticipatory or pre-arrest bail.
- It seeks temporary protection from arrest and simultaneously get time to approach the appropriate court of that place.
- Though the courts do not have jurisdiction over place where the case is registered, yet with the question of personal liberty being involved, the High Courts across India generally allow such prayer depending upon the merits of the case.
About Transit remand
Since the arrested person is required under the law to be presented before a magistrate within 24 hours of arrest, they are produced by the police of the other state – which has registered the case – before the nearest magistrate of the place from where the person has been arrested to get a transit remand to comply with the law to produce them before 24 hours.
Context: The Congress party in a pre-emptive move has written to the Lok Sabha speaker not to certify 7 key bills as money bill as it bypasses the Rajya Sabha
Bills in question:
- Bill seeking to replace the University Grants Commission with a Higher Education Commission.
- Amendment to the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act
- the setting up of a Development Finance Institution
- the introduction of a securities markets code that will merge all market regulatory laws, amendments to
- the Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation Act
- Amendments to pave way for the initial public offering of LIC
- The privatization of two public sector banks
About money bill
A Bill is said to be a Money Bill under article 110 of the constitution if it only contains provisions related to taxation, borrowing of money by the government, expenditure from or receipt to the Consolidated Fund of India.
Qualification as money bill:
- Under Article 110(1) of the Constitution, a Bill is deemed to be a Money Bill if it contains only provisions dealing with all or any of the following matters:
the imposition, abolition, remission, alteration or regulation of any tax
- regulation of borrowing by the government
- custody of the Consolidated Fund or Contingency Fund of India, and payments into or withdrawals from these Funds
- appropriation of moneys out of the Consolidated Fund of India
- declaring of any expenditure to be expenditure charged on the Consolidated Fund of India or the increasing of the amount of any such expenditure
- receipt of money on account of the Consolidated Fund of India or the public account of India or the custody or issue of such money or the audit of the accounts of the Union or of a State
- any matter incidental to any of the matters specified in sub-clauses (a) to (f).
Power to decide money bill
- The speaker of the Lok Sabha decides if a bill is money bill or not (Art 110 (3)) and his decision in this regard is final.
Power of Rajya Sabha w.r.t Money Bill
- Under Article 109 (1), a Money Bill cannot be introduced in Rajya Sabha.
- Once passed by Lok Sabha, it is sent to Rajya Sabha — along with the Speaker’s certificate that it is a Money Bill — for its recommendations.
- However, Rajya Sabha can neither reject nor amend the Bill, and must return it within 14 days, after which Lok Sabha may choose to accept or reject all or any of its recommendations.
- In either case, the Bill is deemed to have been passed by both Houses.
- Under Article 109(5), if Rajya Sabha fails to return the Bill to Lok Sabha within 14 days, it is deemed to have been passed anyway.
Context: With international crude oil prices rising by 70% since November with Brent hitting 63.8 dollar a barrel the petrol price in India in some states has reached as high as Rs100 per liter.
- Increase will not benefit the Centre much because the excise duty on petrol and diesel is a specific tax, charged on the number of units sold.
- Most States however calculate sales tax/VAT on petrol and diesel on ad valorem basis, based on the sale value (however some goes for specific duty structure), thus gaining from the increase in the prices. Ex- Rajasthan, Telangana, Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh
Pricing in India
- The pricing of petrol and diesel in India is based on the sour grade (Oman and Dubai average) and sweet grade (Brent Dated) crude oil processed in Indian refineries in the ratio of 75.62: 24.38
- The basic sic value of crude accounts for around 36 per cent of the final cost of petrol (in Delhi). Freight charges and dealer commissions account for around 4 per cent. The remaining 60 per cent of the retail price of petrol and 54 per cent of diesel goes to the Centre and States as taxes.
- The basic excise duty is ₹ 1.40, special additional excise duty ₹ 11, agriculture, infrastructure and development cess ₹50 and additional excise duty (road and infrastructure cess) ₹18.
- The excise duty and cess on diesel are also similarly linked to the quantity sold and not the value. While this helps the Centre protect its revenue in periods when crude oil prices decline, it caps the income when prices increase.
Context: At an event organized by the International Energy Agency (IEA) the Petroleum minister criticized major oil producing countries for cutting oil production which has led to inflation.
- India currently imports 85% of its oil needs. With the rise in crude oil price its import bill rises significantly.
- This rise leads to inflationary pressure on the economy as a whole as oil as the source of energy is almost significant for all sectors like transport.
- This is also leading to contraction in economy as the inflationary pressure impacts demand as well and it is worrying trend in post-Covid scenario.
- Current rise is fueled by cuts over and above previously-announced levels but also added additional voluntary cut.
- Inflation is defined as a situation where there is sustained, unchecked increase in the general price level and a fall in the purchasing power of money.
- Inflation is measured in India using CPI (released by NSO).It is a comprehensive measure used for estimation of price changes in a basket of goods and services representative of consumption expenditure in an economy is called consumer price index.
- RBI goes for inflation targeting under its monetary policy Review with 4% being set as the Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation target for the period from August 5, 2016, to March 31, 2021, with the upper tolerance limit of 6% and the lower tolerance limit of 2%.