- States have a twin responsibility: to protect free speech and preserve law and order
- State cannot choose anyone- It has a duty to do both.
- This is the core message of the Supreme Court order staying the notifications
and decisions of four States to prohibit the screening of the •film Padmaavat.
- Directing them to ensure that law and order is maintained during its exhibition.
- Gujarat and Rajasthan- (Haryana and Madhya Pradesh) have indicated they would follow suit.
- Creative freedom could be so easily prohibited by the state citing a possible risk to public order
- freedom of speech and expression enshrined in Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution.
- Such a right is subject to reasonable restrictions on some grounds, including public order.
- Use of the threat of violence cannot give the state an oblique reason
- SC has made it clear that it cannot give anyone a virtual veto over a certificate issued by the
- Central Board of Film Certification
- S.Rangarajan v.P. Jagjivan Ram (1989)
- Prakash Jha Productions v.Union of India (2011)
- State‟s duty to maintain law and order.
- Current controversy, the •filmmakers agreed to change its name from Padmavati to Padmaavat.
- Also agreed to several cuts suggested by a special panel formed by the CBFC
- If even after these concessions the protestors are allowed to obtain a ban
- Supreme Court has indicated where the constitutional duty of State governments lies
Protecting marriages across castes
- Soon, honour killing(सम्मान रक्षा हेतुहत्या) will be seen as a separate offence
- Eight years after the National Commission for Women (NCW) proposed a special law to punish honour killings incited by khap panchayats,
- Supreme Court has said that adults are free to marry persons of their own choice and hurting couples, or summoning them before clan members, groups, or a khap, is “absolutely illegal”
- Killings and crimes were reported mostly from north India — especially Haryana, Punjab,
Delhi and western Uttar Pradesh
- NCW said, show a violation of fundamental rights, including the right to life and liberty
- NCW recommended that the anyone who kills or hurts an adult couple who chose to marry of their own free will should be punished for murder or any offence under the Indian Penal Code.
- The government agreed to the Supreme Court’s suggestion to frame guidelines
recognising honour killing as a separate offence.
- Prevention of Crimes in the Name of ‘Honour’ andTradition Bill, 2010
Towards solar-powered agriculture
- India must exploit the potential of this technology to help
farmers meet irrigation needs
- Past few years, solar pumps have consistently piqued the interest of various bureaucrats
and politicians- PM spoke about solar pumps from the ramparts of the Red Fort in 2016.
- But how should India proceed with this impactful technology?
- Case studies- Maharashtra is solarising its agricultural feeders by installing solar
power plants- Karnataka is promoting solar pumps
- Generate additional income by feeding back surplus energy into the grid
- GIZ(German Federal Enterprise for International Cooperation) German development agency.
- Despite diversity of approaches & significant government subsidies, only about 1,42,000
pumps have been deployed till date against a target of one million pumps by 2021
- India, 53% of the net-sown area is still rain-fed.
- Solar pumps hold potential to
• 1)-enhance irrigation access,
• 2)-advance low-carbon agriculture,
• 3)-Reduce the burden of rising electricity subsidies, and
• 4)-Improve the resilience of farmers against a changing climate.
- Deploying the technology to maximise economic returns.
- What can be done
• 1).Target marginal farmers….with smaller solar pumps, particularly in areas with good groun dwater development potential- UP- 60% of marginal farmers relied on buying water
• 2)- couple solar pump deployment with micro-irrigation and water harvesting interventions at the farm and community levels- Lack of irrigation is a major bottleneck
• 3)- Deploy at least five solar pumps in each block of the country4)-In regions with already good penetration of electric pumps, prefer feeder solarisation
through competitive bidding over solarisation of individual pumps
5)- Promote community – owned solar pumps
6)- Encourage sharing of solar pumps among farmers through farmer extension programmes
7)- Provide interest – subsidy to farmers combined with reduced capital subsidy to enable
large – scale deployment of solar pumps in a shorter span of time
- India must exploit potential of this decentralised technology to achieve dual national targets
of 100 GW of solar and doubling farmers income by 2022 setting a worldclass example
Bitcoin’s rally may be over
Prelims Focus Facts-News Analysis
- Page-1- Pak. Diplomats funded unrest in J&K: NIA
- The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has claimed that Pakistan High Commission o•cials •nanced some of the accused who were arrested last year for “conspiring to wage war against the government” by carrying out terrorist and secessionist activities in Jammu and Kashmir.
- Page-6– Report highlights India’s digital divide
- Rural Kerala frontrunner in Internet access, rural Bengal at the bottom of the heap
- Southern State of Kerala seems far ahead of all Indian
States in breaching the digital divide if the data generated by Pratham’s Annual Status of Educatio n Report, 2017
- Page-7– Agni-V extends its reach
- Covers 4,900 km in 19 minutes on its •fifth •flight test
- Agni-V, validating the long range surface – to surface ballistic missile
- India to set up $350 mn fund for solar projects to meet renewable energy target
- Minister con•dent of achieving 175 GW of installed capacity well before 2020
- India will set up a $350 million fund to finance solar projects, Power Minister
R.K. Singh said, as the country steps up e•orts to achieve its ambitious target of adding 175 gigawatts (GW) in renewable energy by 2022.
- India will need at least $125 billion to fund a plan to increase share of renewable power supply in country‟s grid by 2022, underlining the immense •- financing challenge ahead.
- Modi to visit Palestine in February
- Israeli government is pushing for a free trade agreement (FTA) with India to boost trade
- Troops will stay in Syria even after IS falls: Tillerson
- To ensure that neither Iran nor President Bashar al-Assad of Syria take over areas
that have been newly liberated with help from the U.S., Secretary of State Rex Tillerson
- „2017 was the second or third warmest year‟
- Last year was the second or third warmest on record behind 2016
- GST rates on 29 goods, 53 services cut