Insights into Editorial: Why is retrospective tax being scrapped?

    Context: Finance Minister introduced the Taxation Laws (Amendment) Bill in the Lok Sabha to nullify the tax clause provision that allows the government to levy taxes retrospectively. The bill seeks to withdraw tax demands made using a 2012 retrospective legislation to tax the indirect transfer of Indian assets. The government has been fighting …

Insights into Editorial: An opportunity for India to pitch for holistic maritime security

    Context: In an innovative departure from normal practice, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will preside (in virtual mode) over an open debate at the global high-table, namely the UN Security Council, on August 9 when India holds the President’s chair for one month. This will mark a diplomatic first for an Indian PM: This …

Insights into Editorial: No fundamental right to strike

    Context: Recently, the Minister of Defence introduced the Essential Defence Services Bill, 2021, in the Lok Sabha to provide for the maintenance of essential defence services so as “to secure the security of nation and the life and property of the public at large” and prevent staff of the government-owned ordnance factories from …

Insights into Editorial: Providing horizontal quota: the Bihar way

    Context: The Bihar government recently announced 33% horizontal reservation for women in State engineering and medical colleges. While reservation for Scheduled Castes (SCs), Scheduled Tribes (STs), Other Backward Classes (OBCs) and Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) is referred to as vertical reservation. Horizontal reservation refers to the equal opportunity provided to other categories of …

Insights into Editorial: e-RUPI: Voucher system ahead of digital currency

    Context: Taking the first step towards having a digital currency in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched an electronic voucher based digital payment system “e-RUPI”. The platform, which has been developed by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the National …

Insights into Editorial: Assam, Mizoram agree to ease border tension

  Context: An exchange of fire between the police forces of both the States on July 26 left six Assam policemen and a civilian dead and 60 others, including Cachar district’s Superintendent of Police injured. Assam claimed the firing was one-sided and unprovoked while Mizoram said they had retaliated to the aggression by the Assam …

Insights into Editorial: Law and lawmakers: On criminal acts and legislative privilege

    Context: The Supreme Court has rejected Kerala government’s plea to withdraw criminal cases against its MLAs who were charged in the assembly. Legislative privileges available to the members of a House cannot extend to immunity from application of criminal law, the Supreme Court said by dismissing Kerala government’s challenging the order of the …

Insights into Editorial: The long road to winning the battle against trafficking

    Context: July 30 is United Nations World Day against Trafficking in Persons. World Day Against Trafficking in Persons is marked every year on July 30 to create awareness around people who are being trafficked and are taken away against their will. It helps to educate others that trafficking in persons is a crime …

Insights into Editorial: A judgment that must be taken in the right spirit

    Context: A constitutional amendment is a rare event. There have only been 104 such cases of those in the 71 years since the Constitution came into being. Rarer still is when a court strikes down a constitutional amendment, an event which has occurred only seven times before recent last week. Such a moment …

Insights into Editorial: What UNESCO heritage site Dholavira tells us about the Indus Valley Civilisation

    Context: The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), recently, inscribed the 13th-century Ramappa in Palampet, Telangana a ‘World Heritage Site’. Dholavira, the archaeological site of a Harappan-era city, received the UNESCO world heritage site tag. While Dholavira became the fourth site from Gujarat and 40th from India to make the list, …

Insights into Editorial: Wounded mountains: on Himachal landslide tragedy

  Context: The tragic death of nine tourists in a landslip in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh is another pointer to the fragility of the ecology of the Himalayan States. Extraordinarily heavy rain pummelled the State recently, leaving the hill slopes unstable and causing floods in built-up areas including Dharamshala. The descending boulders from destabilised …

Insights into Editorial: Money changer: On need for an official digital currency

    Context: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) recently said that it has been working towards a phased implementation strategy central bank digital currency (CBDC). While the move has been welcomed by industry stakeholders, a few statements made by RBI have stoked concerns regarding the future of virtual currencies (VCs) such as bitcoin, ether …

Insights into Editorial: The direction that the National Curriculum Framework needs to take

    Context: The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has tasked the State Councils of Educational Research and Training (SCERTs) to develop four State Curriculum Frameworks (SCFs). They pertain to School Education, Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE), Teacher Education (TE) and Adult Education (AE). This is as in the recommendations of …

Insights into Editorial: India must directly engage with Taliban 2.0

  Context: With the withdrawal of the United States from Afghanistan in process, Indian government has decided to ramp down its civilian presence in the war-torn country, bracing for a full-blown civil war. India has ‘temporarily’ closed its consulate in Kandahar and evacuated its diplomats and Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) personnel stationed there. This follows …

Insights into Editorial: Moving towards regional value chains

    Introduction: The principal measure of cross-border investment activities on multinational enterprises (MNEs) is foreign direct investment flows (FDI). The three key dimensions of technology policy trends in recent times are: The degree of fragmentation and the length of value chains, The geographical spread of value-adds, and The governance choices of MNEs that determine …

Insights into Editorial: Spy in hand: On Pegasus spyware issue

      Context: As per reports of some national and international news agencies there appeared on a leaked list of “potential” or actual targets for spying by the Israeli company NSO’s Pegasus spyware. Recently, it has been reported that Pegasus, the malicious software, has allegedly been used to secretly monitor and spy on an …

Insights into Editorial: The challenge of skilling India

  Context: Speaking on the occasion of the World Youth Skills Day last week, Prime Minister yet again underscored the importance of a skilled workforce for achieving the goal of becoming Atmanirbhar Bharat. In today’s world, only those individuals and countries would grow which are skilled. PM Modi referred to the schemes and programmes run …

Insights into Editorial: India needs a renewed health-care system

      Context: India has a new Union Health Minister after the recent cabinet reshuffle. So, what does the new Health Minister need to learn from previous experience, and what unfinished tasks need to be taken forward? As citizens, how should we expect the Government to perform better on the public health front, given …