- Members as Numbers
- Annual Eclipse of the Sun
- A Two front War
- Double Pandemic
- UAPA and related Issues
MEMBERS AS NUMBERS
Focus: GS-II Governance
Why in news?
Recently elections took place for the Rajya sabha and ruling BJP secured 19 seats across several states
How are elections conducted to Rajya sabha
- Elections to the Rajya Sabha are indirect
- Members representing States are elected by elected members of legislative assemblies of the States in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote,
- Voting is done using Open ballot system.
Arguments in favour of Rajya Sabha
- The Rajya Sabha is required to maintain the federal equilibrium by protecting the interests of the states against the undue interference of the Centre.
- The second chamber enables a second and reflective expression of representative opinion.
- Both the Houses check one another and hence instances of parliamentary tyranny can be avoided.
- Legislation is checked by members who are expected to be sober, wise and well-informed with domain knowledge.
- It represents the interests of the States as a federal chamber and Promotes Federalism
- It acts as a deliberative body holding high-quality debates on important issues.
- In 2006 in Kuldip Nayar v. Union of India and Others, the SC held that Rajya Sabha has turned out to be another chamber of the Parliament akin to the Lok Sabha, except for the mode of selection of its members.
- The deadlock between both Houses on parliamentary matters is a major setback to India’s progress and shows the leadership of all parties in a bad light.
- Cronyism and patronage appointments are increasing.
- Only some members have the necessary qualifications that will do justice to the role of the Rajya Sabha, others do not measure up.
- Many parties are now using the Rajya Sabha as a backdoor to get members elected, most of whom will not be able to win a Lok Sabha election.
- People get in from States they are least connected with.
- Parliamentary logjams and stalling of legislation can be avoided.
ANNULAR ECLIPSE OF THE SUN- 21 JUNE
Focus: GS-I Geography ;
Why in news?
- An annular solar eclipse occured on 21st June, 2020 and it will be visible in India within a narrow corridor of northern part of the country.
- The annular path passes through Congo, Sudan, Ethiopia, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Pakistan, northern parts of India and China.
- A solar eclipse occurs when a portion of the Earth is covered in a shadow cast by the Moon which fully or partially blocks sunlight.
- This occurs when the Sun, Moon and Earth are aligned.
Why does the Solar Eclipse not occur during every new moon?
- Since the Moon’s orbit is tilted at more than 5 degrees to the Earth’s orbit around the Sun, its shadow usually misses Earth.
A TWO FRONT WAR
Focus: GS-II International Relations
Why in news?
India’s Chief of the Army Staff, General Manoj Mukund Naravane, reassuringly said that the Indian Army remains “alive” to a “two front” war.
What is a two front war?
This is the anchor on which India’s new war doctrine is based which means that India should be prepared to effectively meet simultaneous threats from China on the northern borders and Pakistan on the western borders.
A two-front war could start against India in three different ways.
- Pakistan takes advantage of an India-China conflict.
- China engages in strategic opportunism in an India-Pakistan conventional military engagement.
- China and Pakistan collude to launch a surprise-coordinated attack from both India’s east and west.
Is India prepared to fight it?
At the primary level is clear to many in position of authority that the Indian military remains fundamentally unprepared for such a challenge.
On the other hand, China continues to rapidly modernise and numerically increase its military.
Force ratio of indian army and Air force is very much tilted towards Chinese.
At this juncture of COVID 19 and global economic recession, neither India nor China is ready for a War. There are great chances that, Indo chinese war might lay foundations for 3rd world war. Indian forces are alert and government has made it clear that, Sovereignty of indian territory is the priority. India needs to enhance capacity building of defence equipment so that, fighting a two front war is not impossible.
Focus: GS-I Women Empowerment
Why in news?
COVID 19 epidemic and following lockdowns have posed the risk of domestic and gender based violence.
More in detail
- women are bearing the brunt of the frustration and anger.
- Surging numbers of emergency calls to helplines between 25% and 300%,
- Dramatic increases in Internet searches for support for those affected by domestic violence, and higher numbers of domestic homicides
- women tend often to be at a disadvantage during crises, epidemics and now this pandemic, and that domestic violence tends to increase
- Gender roles and harmful practices, including customs such as early and forced marriage, limit women’s access to health services.
- Women do three times as much unpaid care work at home compared to men, and make up 70% of workers in the health and social care sectors
- post COVID19 strategies include dedicated funding and support for micro, small and medium sized businesses and the informal sector, which are predominantly led by women
- Behavioural changes to Patriarchal society
- Gender sensitization from childhood.
- Imparting moral education in schools.
UAPA AND RELATED ISSUES
Focus: GS-II Governance
Definition of Terror
The words “terror” or “terrorist” are not defined, but the Unlawful Activity Prevention Act [UAPA] Bill defines a “terrorist act” as any act committed with intent to threaten or likely to threaten the unity, integrity, security, economic security, or sovereignty of India or with intent to strike terror or likely to strike terror in the people or any section of the people in India or in any foreign country.
Designation by UN and under UAPA
- The designation of an individual as a global terrorist by the United Nations is associated with sanctions including travel bans, freezing of assets and an embargo against procuring arms.
- The UAPA Bill, does not provide any such detail
Summary of Provisions.
- Empower government to designate individuals and organizations as terrorists.
- National Investigation Agency [NIA] has power to seize property associated with terrorist groups.
- The act is Non bailable offence under UAPA
Recent amendments to UAPA act.
- Under the amendment Bill, the central government will set up the review committee consisting of a chairperson (a retired or sitting judge of a High Court) and three other members. The review committee will be empowered to order the government to delete the name of the individual from the schedule that lists “terrorists”, if it considers the order to be flawed
- The existing UAPA law requires an investigating officer to take prior permission of the Director General of Police of a state for conducting raids, and seizing properties that are suspected to be linked to terrorist activities.
- The amendment Bill, however, removes this requirement if the investigation is conducted by an officer of the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
- The investigating officer only requires sanction from the Director General of NIA.
- The Bill seeks to allow NIA officers of Inspector rank to carry out investigations