Insights Daily Current Events, 18 September 2015
Paper 2 Topic: Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.
SC stays operation of new Haryana panchayat law
The Supreme Court has stayed the operation of the Haryana Panchayati Raj (amendment) Act 2015. The new law prescribes minimum educational qualifications for contesting in local bodies’ elections.
- The Haryana State government had notified the Haryana Panchayati Raj (amendment) Act 2015 recently.
- According to the amendments, general category candidates require a minimum qualification of Class X pass, men contesting in the Scheduled Caste category and women in the general category need to be Class VIII pass, while women in the Scheduled Caste category need to be Class V pass to be eligible.
- The amendments also required that candidates should not have any dues in co-operative banks, electricity bills should be paid up and there should be a functional toilet at home.
- The State government had gone ahead with the changes despite the Punjab and Haryana High Court staying the relevant ordinance on August 21.
- A petition was filed against the law alleging that the act had some discriminatory provisions that restrain persons from contesting elections on the ground of educational qualifications.
- The petition also says that 83% of Dalit women and 71% women in general and 56 percent males would be excluded from contesting the panchayat polls by this law, affecting fundamental rights of the candidates.
Besides Haryana, Rajasthan has also recently fixed the minimum educational qualification for elections to the Panchayati Raj institutions.
Sources: The Hindu.
Paper 3 Topic: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievements of Indians in science & technology.
Geo-tagging to ensure better land management
Andhra Pradesh government has decided to geo-tag every piece of land in the State and hand over 13,000 computer tablets to revenue officers for completing the task by the end of November this year.
- to ensure better and scientific management of land issues.
- This initiative was first launched on a pilot basis in four mandals in Andhra Pradesh. It was expanded to entire State last month.
- It is taken up as part of various reforms in the in the Revenue Department.
How this move helps?
- The move would help in better land management and crop management.
- It would provide crop-wise details as also evidence in case of crop damage and enable officials to verify claims.
In terms of land management, satellite imagery would be used to cross check with the details on the ground. Ultimately, there would be database of all lands.
what is geo tagging?
Geotagging is the process of adding geographical information to various media in the form of metadata. The data usually consists of coordinates like latitude and longitude, but may even include bearing, altitude, distance and place names.
Sources: The Hindu, Wiki.
Paper 2 Topic: Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes.
Pradhan Mantri Khanij Kshetra Kalyan Yojana (PMKKKY) launched
The Central Government has launched the Pradhan Mantri Khanij Kshetra Kalyan Yojana (PMKKKY).
This is a new programme meant to provide for the welfare of areas and people affected by mining related operations, using the funds generated by District Mineral Foundations (DMFs).
Objectives of the scheme:
- to implement various developmental and welfare projects/programs in mining affected areas that complement the existing ongoing schemes/projects of State and Central Government
- to minimize/mitigate the adverse impacts, during and after mining, on the environment, health and socio-economics of people in mining districts
- to ensure long-term sustainable livelihoods for the affected people in mining areas
Areas of focus:
- High priority areas like drinking water supply, health care, sanitation, education, skill development, women and child care, welfare of aged and disabled people, skill development and environment conservation will get at least 60 % share of the funds.
- For creating a supportive and conducive living environment, balance funds will be spent on making roads, bridges, railways, waterways projects, irrigation and alternative energy sources.
About District Mineral Foundations (DMFs):
- The Mines and Minerals (Development & Regulation) Amendment Act, 2015, mandated the setting up of District Mineral Foundations (DMFs) in all districts in the country affected by mining related operations.
- In case of all mining leases executed before 12th January, 2015 (the date of coming into force of the Amendment Act) miners will have to contribute an amount equal to 30% of the royalty payable by them to the DMFs. Where mining leases are granted after 12.01.2015, the rate of contribution would be 10% of the royalty payable.
Sources: The Hindu, PIB.
Trivia: places in news
Kawal sanctuary: It is a tiger sanctuary located in Adilabad district in Telangana state. Govt of India declared Kawal wildlife sanctuary as Tiger Reserve in 2012.