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[Mission 2022] INSIGHTS DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS + PIB SUMMARY- 23 October 2021

 

 

InstaLinks help you think beyond the issue but relevant to the issue from UPSC prelims and Mains exam point of view. These linkages provided in this ‘hint’ format help you frame possible questions in your mind that might arise(or an examiner might imagine) from each current event. InstaLinks also connect every issue to their static or theoretical background. This helps you study a topic holistically and add new dimensions to every current event to help you think analytically. 

current affairs, current events, current gk, insights ias current affairs, upsc ias current affairs

 

Table of Contents:

GS Paper 2:

1. General consent to CBI.

2. Uighurs.

3. Turkey on FATF Grey List.

4. Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC).

 

GS Paper 3:

1. ‘Net zero’ feasibility for India.

2. Public Safety Act (PSA).

 

Facts for Prelims:

1. What Is an International Securities Identification Number (ISIN)?

2. Barbados elects its first-ever president, replacing the British monarchy.


 

General consent to CBI

GS Paper 2:

Topics Covered: Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.

 

General consent to CBI

Context:

A suit was filed by the West Bengal Government against the Union of India under Article 131 of the Constitution.

  • The State has challenged the CBI’s jurisdiction to register FIRs and conduct investigations in the State in myriad cases.
  • West Bengal said it had withdrawn “general consent” to the CBI way back in 2018.

 

West Bengal’s concerns:

The State said the CBI’s actions were a direct attack on the federal structure of governance and aimed to harass ruling Trinamool Congress leaders in the State.

 

Centre’s response:

  • State governments do not have any “absolute” power to keep the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) from investigating crimes inside the State.
  • Not even the Union government”, has the authority to rattle the autonomy of the premier agency to conduct investigations.
  • Also, withdrawal of general consent would not stand in the way of constitutional courts entrusting the CBI with the cases “where it is found that the State Police would not effectively conduct a fair and impartial investigation”.
  • Besides, the CBI was empowered to probe cases concerning any of the Central subjects enumerated in the Union List in the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution.

 

Why is consent necessary?

The CBI is governed by the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act that makes consent of a state government mandatory for conducting investigation in that state.

 

There are two kinds of consent:

Case-specific and general– Given that the CBI has jurisdiction only over central government departments and employees, it can investigate a case involving state government employees or a violent crime in a given state only after that state government gives its consent.

  • “General consent” is normally given to help the CBI seamlessly conduct its investigation into cases of corruption against central government employees in the concerned state.

 

What does withdrawal mean?

It simply means that CBI officers will lose all powers of a police officer as soon as they enter the state unless the state government has allowed them.

  • The decision means the CBI will now have to get consent from the state government for every case it registers in Maharashtra.

 

Under what provision can general consent been withdrawn?

In exercise of power conferred by Section 6 of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946, the state governments can withdraw the general consent accorded.

 

Can withdrawal mean that the CBI can no longer probe any case?

No. The CBI would still have the power to investigate old cases registered when general consent existed. Also, cases registered anywhere else in the country, but involving people stationed in states which have withdrawn consent, would allow CBI’s jurisdiction to extend to these states.

 

Insta Curious:

Suits under Article 131 are filed exclusively in the Supreme Court with regard to disputes between States, or between the Centre and State. Do you know about the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court? Reference: read this.

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. About CBI and its establishment.
  2. Provisions of DSPE Act.
  3. What is General Consent?
  4. What happens when general consent is withdrawn by states?

Mains Link:

Can withdrawal mean that the CBI can no longer probe any case? Discuss.

Sources: the Hindu.

Uighurs:

GS Paper 2:

Topics Covered: Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora.

 

Context:

Forty-three countries have called on China to “ensure full respect for the rule of law” for the Muslim Uighur community in Xinjiang.

  • The declaration accused China of a litany of human rights violations against the Uighurs, including torture, forced sterilisation and forced disappearances.

 

What were the demands?

China should allow immediate, meaningful and unfettered access to Xinjiang for independent observers, including the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and her office.

 

What’s the issue?

Credible reports indicate that over a million people have been arbitrarily detained in Xinjiang and that there is widespread surveillance disproportionately targeting Uighurs and members of other minorities and restrictions on fundamental freedoms and Uighur culture.

 

China’s response:

Despite mounting evidence, China denies mistreating the Uyghurs, and goes on to insist it is simply running “vocational training” centres designed to counter extremism.

current affairs

 

Who are Uighurs?

The Uighurs are a predominantly Muslim minority Turkic ethnic group, whose origins can be traced to Central and East Asia.

The Uighurs speak their own language, similar to Turkish, and see themselves as culturally and ethnically close to Central Asian nations.

  • China recognises the community only as a regional minority and rejects that they are an indigenous group.
  • Currently, the largest population of the Uighur ethnic community lives in the Xinjiang region of China.
  • A significant population of Uighurs also lives in the neighbouring Central Asian countries such as Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan.

Uighur Muslims for decades, under the false accusation by the Chinese government of terrorism and separatism, have suffered from abuses including persecution, forced detention, intense scrutiny, surveillance and even slavery.

 

Insta Curious:

Do you know about China’s One Country Two Systems policy? Which regions are administered under this policy? Read this

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Who are Uighurs?
  2. Where is Xinjiang?
  3. Who are Han Chinese?
  4. Indian states bordering Xinjiang province.

Mains Link:

Who are Uighurs? Why are they in news? Discuss. 

Sources: the Hindu.

Turkey on FATF Grey List:

GS Paper 2:

Topics Covered: Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

 

Context:

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has added Turkey, along with Jordan and Mali, in its revised list of “jurisdictions under increased monitoring”, also known as the FATF grey list. There are now 23 countries in the list.

 

What prompts FATF to place countries under the grey list?

If countries fail to prevent international money laundering and terrorist financing, then they shall be placed on the list.

 

What does ‘increased monitoring’ mean?

According to the FATF, when a jurisdiction is placed under increased monitoring, “it means the country has committed to swiftly resolve the identified strategic deficiencies within agreed timeframes and is subject to extra checks”.

 

Which countries were removed out of the list?

The FATF took two countries — Botswana and Mauritius — out of the grey list. It is because these countries had made significant progress in addressing the strategic AML/CFT (Anti-Money Laundering/Combating the Financing of Terrorism) deficiencies identified earlier by the FATF and included in their respective action plans.

 

Blacklist and grey list:

Black List: Countries known as Non-Cooperative Countries or Territories (NCCTs) are put in the blacklist. These countries support terror funding and money laundering activities. The FATF revises the blacklist regularly, adding or deleting entries.

Grey List: Countries that are considered safe haven for supporting terror funding and money laundering are put in the FATF grey list. This inclusion serves as a warning to the country that it may enter the blacklist.

FATF style regional bodies

 

Insta Curious:

According to FATF rules there is one essential stage between ‘Grey’ and ‘Black’ lists, referred to as ‘Dark Grey’. What is it? Reference: read this.

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. About FATF.
  2. Black vs Grey list.
  3. Are FATF’s decisions binding on member countries?
  4. Who heads the FATF?
  5. Where is its secretariat?

Mains Link:

What is the mandate and objectives of the Financial Action Task Force? Discuss.

Sources: Indian Express.

Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC):

GS Paper 2:

Topics Covered: Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

 

Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC)

Context:

The Singapore-based arbitrator, SIAC, has rejected Future Retail’s plea to lift the interim stay on its ₹24,713-crore deal with Reliance Retail, giving a major relief to Amazon that is contesting the transaction.

 

Implications:

This order now restrains Future Group and Reliance Industries Limited from proceeding with a Rs 24,713-crore deal signed in August for Future Retail to sell its retail, wholesale, logistics and warehousing units to Reliance Retail and Fashionstyle.

 

Why did Amazon approach SIAC?

The parties in a deal usually sign a contractual agreement which specifies about:

  1. The arbitral institution administering the arbitration.
  2. The applicable rules.
  3. The seat of arbitration.

In this case Amazon and Future Group have under their agreement agreed to refer their disputes to SIAC, with Singapore presumably being the contractual choice for the seat/place of arbitration.

 

How is the dispute taken up at the SIAC? What is the procedure to be followed?

Once a dispute is referred to arbitration, the process of appointment of the arbitral tribunal takes place.

Composition: Typically, in case of a three member tribunal, both the parties appoint one member each to the tribunal, while the third member is jointly appointed by the two nominees or, if they fail to agree, by SIAC.

 

Appointment of an Emergency Arbitrator:

Appointment of the arbitral tribunal usually takes time.

  • Therefore, under the rules of SIAC, parties can move SIAC to appoint an emergency arbitrator to get urgent interim relief, even as the process of appointment of the main arbitral tribunal is underway.

 

What happens when the parties don’t comply with the order voluntarily?

Currently under Indian law, there is no express mechanism for enforcement of the orders of the Emergency Arbitrator.

But, the parties voluntarily comply with the Emergency Award.

  • However, if the parties don’t comply with the order voluntarily, then the party which has won the emergency award, in this case Amazon, can move the High Court in India under Section 9 of the Arbitration & Conciliation Act, 1996, to get similar reliefs as granted by the Emergency Arbitrator.

 

Why has Singapore become the hub of international arbitration?

  • Foreign investors investing in India typically want to avoid the rigmarole of the Indian courts.
  • Foreign investors feel that Singapore is neutral ground for dispute resolution.
  • Singapore itself over time has built a stellar reputation as jurisdiction driven by rule of law with international standards and high integrity. This gives comfort to investors that the arbitration process will be quick, fair and just”.

According to the 2019 annual report of SIAC, India was the top user of its arbitration seat with 485 cases being referred to SIAC, followed by Philippines at 122, China at 76 and the United States at 65.

 

Does India have any international arbitration centre?

Yes. India now has its own international arbitration centre in Mumbai.

 

About Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC):

It is a not-for-profit international arbitration organisation based in Singapore, which administers arbitrations under its own rules of arbitration and the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Arbitration Rules.

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. What is Arbitration?
  2. About SIAC.
  3. Overview of the Arbitration & Conciliation Act, 1996.
  4. About UNCITRAL.

Mains Link:

Discuss why has Singapore become the hub of international arbitration?

Sources: the Hindu.

‘Net zero’ feasibility for India:

GS Paper 30:

Topics Covered: Conservation related issues.

 

Context:

The 26th meeting of the United Nations’ Conference of Parties (CoP) will begin on November 1 in Glasgow.

  • Ahead of this meet, the focus on making the meet a success is to have all nations commit to a ‘net zero‘, or a year by when a country’s fossil fuel emissions would peak and at some point be neutralised by taking out excess carbon from the atmosphere.

current affairs

 

Need for ‘net zero’ emissions:

All countries doing this by 2050, scientists say, would mean a chance of restricting average temperature rise to 1.5 Celsius provided emissions fall to around 45% of 2010 levels by 2030.

 

Challenges for India:

  1. Achieving ‘net zero’ means deep and significant cuts to fossil fuel use that could affect the development trajectory of India and other developing countries.
  2. For India to achieve a net-zero target by 2070, usage of coal especially for power generation would need to peak by 2040 and drop by 99% between 2040 and 2060.
  3. And, the consumption of crude oil across sectors would also need to peak by 2050 and fall substantially by 90% between 2050 and 2070.

 

What has been India’s stand so far?

  • India has always maintained that it will cut down the use of fossil fuel use but only gradually because it cannot compromise on development, that is now primarily reliant on coal.
  • Also because it goes against the core principle of ‘common but differentiated responsibility’ that requires developed countries, who are responsible for the climate crisis, to take on deeper cuts and pay developing countries for the environmental damage from rising temperature as well as finance their transition to clean energy sources.

 

Alternatives before India:

Even if India cannot announce a net zero target, it might update it’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC), or announce a firmer set of commitments that could include higher clean-energy targets or reductions in specific categories of emissions.

 

India’s INDC:

India last announced its NDCs in 2015 in which it committed to increasing the share of non-fossil fuel sources to 40% and reduce its emissions intensity per unit of GDP by nearly 33-35% of 2005 levels and create a carbon sink of 2.5-3 billion tons of CO2 equivalent.

 

What needs to be done?

Developed nations should make good on previous commitments, such as an annual $100 billion to developing countries for mitigating the impacts of climate change, facilitating technology transfer and putting in place a tangible market-based mechanism to activate the moribund carbon credit markets.

 

Insta Curious:

Did you know that India is the world’s third largest emitter? Name top 3 emitters of the world?

Sources: the Hindu.

Public Safety Act (PSA):

GS Paper 3

Topics Covered: Security challenges and their management in border areas; linkages of organized crime with terrorism.

 

Context:

Recently, after the killings of non-locals in Jammu and Kashmir around 700 people have been detained in the union territory, a few under the stringent Public Safety Act (PSA).

 

Powers of government under the Public Safety Act:

Also called the Jammu & Kashmir Public Safety Act (PSA), 1978, it is a preventive detention law.

  • Under this law, a person is taken into custody to prevent him or her from acting in any manner that is prejudicial to “the security of the state or the maintenance of the public order”.

 

Applicability:

  • The law allowed the government to detain any person above the age of 16 without trial for a period of two years.
  • It allows for administrative detention for up to two yearsin the case of persons acting in any manner prejudicial to the security of the State”, and for administrative detention up to one year where “any person is acting in any manner prejudicial to the maintenance of public order”.

 

How is it enforced?

  • It comes into force when administrative orders are passed either by Divisional Commissioner or the District Magistrate.
  • The detaining authority need not disclose any facts about the detention “which it considers to be against the public interest to disclose”.

 

Protection to enforcing authorities:

Section 22 of the Act provides protection for any action taken “in good faith” under the Act: “No suit, prosecution or any other legal proceeding shall lie against any person for anything done or intended to be done in good faith in pursuance of the provisions of this Act.”

 

Why is the law controversial?

  • It allows for detention without trial.
  • No Right to File Bail
  • It provides a vast number of reasons for detention.
  • No Distinction Between Minor and Major Offences.

 

Can the Courts intervene?

The only way this administrative preventive detention order can be challenged is through a habeas corpus petition filed by relatives of the detained person. The High Court and the Supreme Court have the jurisdiction to hear such petitions.

  • However, if the order is quashed, there is no bar on the government passing another detention order under the PSA and detaining the person again.

 

Insta Curious:

When can a person not avail protection against arrest and detention under Article 22 (1) and 22(2)?

 

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Articles 370 and 35A are related to?
  2. Preventive detention related provisions under the Indian Constitution.
  3. When and why was the Public Safety Act introduced?
  4. Sections 22 and 23 of the Public Safety Act are related to?
  5. Who enforces the provisions of the act?

Mains Link:

Discuss the key features of Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act (PSA). Why is it often referred to as a “draconian” law?

Sources: the Hindu.

Facts for Prelims:

What Is an International Securities Identification Number (ISIN)?

  • An ISIN is a 12-digit alphanumeric code that uniquely identifies a specific security.
  • The numbers are allocated by a country’s respective national numbering agency (NNA).
  • ISINs are used for numerous reasons including clearing and settlement. The numbers ensure a consistent format so that holdings of institutional investors can be tracked consistently across markets worldwide.
  • The ISIN code is the only common securities identification number that is universally recognized.

current affairs

 

Barbados elects first-ever president, replacing British monarchy:

  • Barbados has elected its first-ever president to replace the United Kingdom’s Queen Elizabeth as head of state in a decisive step towards shedding the Caribbean island’s colonial past.
  • Barbados is a former British colony that gained independence in 1966, the nation of just less than 300,000 had long maintained ties with the British monarchy. But calls for full sovereignty and homegrown leadership have risen in recent years.
  • Barbados was claimed by the British in 1625. It has sometimes been called “Little England” for its loyalty to British customs.
  • It is the Caribbean’s easternmost island.

current affairs


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