- 1. Universal Ratification to Child Labour Convention
Why in News
Recently, International Labour Organization (ILO)’s convention on Worst Forms of Child Labour also known as Convention No. 182 received universal ratification after the Kingdom of Tonga ratified the same.
- It means ratification by all the members of an organisation. Convention No. 182 has received ratification from all the 187 members of ILO.
- The ILO defines child labour as work that deprives children of their childhood, their potential and their dignity, and that is harmful to their physical and mental development.
- In the least developed countries, slightly more than one in four children (ages 5 to 17) are engaged in labour that is considered detrimental to their health and development.
- The eradication of child labour is part of the Sustainable Development Goal Target 8.7.
- The UN General Assembly has declared 2021 as the year for the elimination of child labour.
Convention No. 182:
- The convention was adopted by ILO member states meeting in Geneva in 1999.
- It aims to protect children from the worst forms of child labour, which include slavery, prostitution, trafficking, deployment of children in armed conflict and other conditions that compromise their overall well-being.
Other International Laws on Child Labour:
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 1989:
- It contains the idea that children are not just objects who belong to their parents and for whom decisions are made, or adults in training. Rather, they are human beings and individuals with their own rights.
Minimum Age Convention 1973:
- It aims to prevent the employment of children below a lower age threshold.
- Both Convention No. 182 and the 1973 Minimum Age Convention are among the eight core ILO Conventions regarded as embodying the spirit of the 1998 declaration on fundamental principles and rights at
- India ratified the Convention No. 182 and the 1973 Minimum Age Convention in 2017.
Impact of Laws on Child Labour:
- According to ILO, incidence of child labour and its worst forms dropped by almost 40% between 2000 and 2016 as ratification rates on child labour increased and countries adopted laws and policies.
- The conventions have resulted in significant increases in enrolments in primary education.
- These conventions also provide the necessary framework to counteract the predominance of informality in the conditions of work and ought to be a priority for governments.
Challenges Related to Child Labour:
- The Sustainable Developmental Goal (SDG) aims at complete abolition of child labour by 2025.
- However, still an estimated 152 million are trapped in child labour and 72 million of them are engaged in hazardous work.
- The Covid-19 pandemic is also threatening the reversal of recent gains, with widespread job losses, deterioration in conditions of work, decline in household incomes and temporary school closures.
- The cycle of poverty and its implications must be addressed properly, so families can find other means to survive. Many NGOs like Bachpan Bachao Andolan, ChildFund, CARE India, have been working to eradicate child labour in India.
- Right kind of focus and orientation with state level authorities is also needed to avoid the practice of child labour. Forced Child Labour requires an urgent action from governments and the international communities.
- Demand for 6th Schedule Status: Arunachal Pradesh
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The recent revival of the demand for two autonomous councils in Arunachal Pradesh has led to the call for bringing the entire Arunachal Pradesh under the ambit of the 6 Schedule or Article 371 (A) of the Constitution.
- Arunachal Pradesh is a 5 Schedule State. Currently the 6 Schedule is applied in Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Tripura.
- On the other hand, Article 371 A is applied in Nagaland which provides special status to Nagaland.
- The 6 Schedule of the Constitution provides for the administration of tribal areas in Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram to safeguard the rights of the tribal population in these states.
- This special provision is provided under Article 244(2) and Article 275(1) of the
- The tribes in the above states have not assimilated much with the life and ways of the other people in these states. These areas still have the presence of anthropological specimens.
- Based on the reports of the Bordoloi Committee formed by the Constituent Assembly, the 6 Schedule was formulated to provide limited autonomy to the tribal regions of North-East.
Administration in the 6 Schedule:
- The tribal areas in the 6 Schedule area have been constituted as autonomous districts. The autonomous districts have been given varying degrees of autonomy within the State Legislature.
- There are 10 autonomous districts – three in Assam, Meghalaya and Mizoram and one in Tripura.
- Each autonomous district can also have a separate regional council. The tribals have been given freedom to exercise legislative and executive powers through an autonomous regional council and autonomous district councils (ADCs).
- The ADCs are empowered with civil and judicial powers. They can also make laws on matters like land, forests, fisheries, social security, etc. with due approval from the governor.
- The Acts passed by Parliament and state legislatures may or may not be levied in these regions unless the President and the governor gives her or his approval, with or without modifications in the laws for the autonomous regions.
- Despite various degrees of autonomy, the 6 Schedule area does not fall outside the executive authority of the state concerned.
- The governor is empowered to organise and re-organise the autonomous districts. He can increase or decrease the areas of autonomous districts or change their names or define their boundaries and so on.
- If there are different tribes in an autonomous district, the governor can also divide the district into several autonomous regions.
Composition of Autonomous Councils:
- Each autonomous district and regional council consists of not more than 30 members, of which four are nominated by the governor and the rest via All of them remain in power for a term of five years.
- However, the Bodoland Territorial Council is an exception as it can constitute up to 46 members.
Article 371 A:
- The Acts of Parliament relating to the following matters would not apply to Nagaland unless decided by the State Legislative Assembly:
- Religious or social practices of the Nagas.
- Naga customary law and procedure.
- Administration of civil and criminal justice involving decisions according to Naga customary law.
- Ownership and transfer of land and its resources.
- Seed Bombs: Solution to Man-Animal Conflict
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Odisha’s Athagarh Forest Division has started casting seed balls (or bombs) inside different reserve forest areas to enrich food stock for wild elephants. This has been done to prevent man-elephant conflict.
- On the eve of World Elephant Day 2020, the Ministry for Environment, Forest and Climate Change has launched a portal on Human Elephant Conflict ‘Surakhsya’.
- Further, the Government has taken initiative for fodder and water augmentation in forest areas so that animals get food and water in forest areas and not come outside.
- LiDAR technology is being used for the same.
- Villagers who bear the brunt of the elephant attacks have come forward to prepare the bamboo seed balls and scatter them in 38 reserve forests under the Athagarh Forest Division.
- The growth in bamboo plantations is expected to meet the needs of the elephants, which often stray out of the forests and raid human habitations.
- Athagarh Forest Division is one of the worst-hit areas as far as man-elephant conflict is concerned.
- A seed bomb is a little ball generally made up of a combination of compost, clay and seeds.
- The compost and clay act as a carrier for the seeds so they can be launched over walls or fences and into inaccessible areas such as wasteland or railways.
- The compost offers nutrients for the seeds to germinate and grow strong during their infancy and the clay binds the seed bomb, making it hard enough not to break when it hits the ground.
- It is used in re-vegetation and reforestation of the fragile ecosystems. The plantation technique wherein seed balls are sprayed using aerial devices, including planes, helicopters or drones, is known as aerial seeding.
- Udaipur has been chosen for experimenting the seed bombing technique to increase forest cover in Rajasthan.
- The Haryana government has employed aerial seeding techniques to improve green cover in the Aravalli area of the State.
- India has a large population of the tiger, Asian elephant, leopard, sloth bear, gaur and many others. Keeping these animals restricted to a few hundred kilometers of protected areas can be difficult.
- Thus, coordinated and collaborative conservation actions are required to motivate communities to shift from conflict to coexistence with wildlife.
- Inclusive development with a long-term vision that cares for the environment is a solution to man-animal conflict.
- National Flag of India
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India will celebrate its 74 Independence Day in 2020, and like every year the Prime Minister of India will hoist the National Flag at the Red Fort to commemorate the day.
- Design: The design of the Indian tricolour is largely attributed to Pingali Venkayya, an Indian freedom fighter.
- He proposed a basic design of the flag, consisting of two red and green bands to symbolise the two major communities, Hindus and Muslims.
- Mahatma Gandhi arguably suggested adding a white band to represent peace and the rest of the communities living in India, and a spinning wheel to symbolise the progress of the country.
- He passed away in 1963 and was posthumously honoured with a postage stamp in 2009 for his contribution towards Indian freedom struggle. In 2014, his name was also proposed for the Bharat Ratna.
- 1906: Arguably the first national flag of India is said to have been hoisted on 7 August 1906, in Kolkata at the Parsee Bagan Square (Green Park).
- It comprised three horizontal strips of red, yellow and green, with Vande Mataram written in the middle.
- The red strip on the flag had symbols of the sun and a crescent moon, and the green strip had eight half-open lotuses.
- 1907: Madame Cama and her group of exiled revolutionaries hoisted an Indian flag in Germany in 1907 — this was the first Indian flag to be hoisted in a foreign land.
- 1917: Dr Annie Besant and Lokmanya Tilak adopted a new flag as part of the Home Rule Movement.
- It had five alternate red and four green horizontal stripes, and seven stars in the saptarishi configuration. A white crescent and star occupied one top corner, and the other had Union Jack.
- 1931: The Congress Committee met in Karachi and adopted the tricolor (that of Pingali Venkayya) as India’s national flag. Red was replaced with saffron and the order of the colours was changed. The flag was to have no religious interpretation.
- Saffron on top symbolises “strength and courage”, white in the middle represents “peace and truth” and green at the bottom stands for “fertility, growth and auspiciousness of the land”.
- The Ashok Chakra with 24 spokes replaced the spinning wheel as the emblem on the flag. It is intended “to show that there is life in movement and death in stagnation”.
- The National Flag should be rectangular in shape with a length to width ratio of 3:2.
Constitutional and Legal Aspect:
- The Constituent Assembly adopted the motion of national flag on 22 July 1947.
- The motion proposed that “the National Flag of India shall be horizontal tricolour of deep saffron (kesari), white and dark green in equal ”
- The white band was to have a wheel in navy blue (the charkha being replaced by the chakra), which appears on the abacus of the Sarnath Lion Capital of Ashoka
- One of the minor committees of the Constituent Assembly, the Ad-hoc Committee on the National Flag was headed by Rajendra Prasad.
- The Part IV-A of the Constitution (which consists of only one Article 51-A) specifies the eleven Fundamental Duties.
- According to Article 51A (a), it shall be the duty of every citizen of India to abide by the Constitution and respect its ideals and institutions, the National Flag and the National Anthem.
- A person who is convicted for the following offences under the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act of 1971 is disqualified to contest in the elections to the Parliament and state legislature for 6 years.
- Offence of insulting the National Flag,
- Offence of insulting the Constitution of India,
- Offence of preventing the singing of the National Anthem.
Why in News
Recently, an Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) for the Indian Coast Guard (ICG) was launched and named as Indian Coast Guard Ship ‘Sarthak’.
- OPV Sarthak is the 4 in the series of the indigenous project for 05 OPVs. OPVs are long-range surface ships capable of coastal and offshore patrolling, policing maritime zones, control and surveillance, anti-smuggling and anti-piracy operations with limited wartime roles.
- Development: OPV Sarthak has been designed & built indigenously by M/s Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL) in line with the government’s vision of ‘Make in India’.
- It has about 70% indigenous content, thus providing the necessary fillip to the Indian shipbuilding industry and a giant leap towards achieving ‘Atmanirbar Bharat’.
- The Ship is fitted with state-of-the-art Navigation and Communication equipment, sensor and machinery.
- It is designed to embark and carry a twin-engine helicopter, four high speed boats and one inflatable boat for swift boarding and Search & Rescue operations.
- It is also capable of carrying limited pollution response equipment to undertake oil spill pollution response at sea.
- The ship will be deployed extensively for Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) surveillance, Coastal Security and other duties as enshrined in the Coast Guard charter of duties, to safeguard the maritime interests of the Nation.
Indian Coast Guard
- The Indian Coast Guard was formally inaugurated on 19 August, 1978. It operates under the Ministry of Defence.
- The organization is headed by the Director General Indian Coast Guard (DGICG) exercising his overall command and superintendence from the Coast
- Guard Headquarters (CGHQ) located at New Delhi.
- For effective command and control, the Maritime Zones of India are divided into five Coast Guard Regions, namely, North-West, West, East, North-East and Andaman & Nicobar, with the respective Regional Headquarters located at Gandhinagar, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Port Blair.
- Further, it keeps an eye on the Indian exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).
- ICG has been a pioneer in inducting indigenous assets which has enabled it to remain operationally available throughout the year.
- The mere presence of ICG units at sea serves dual objectives of “Deterrence” and “Reassurance”.
- It deters people with ill-intent and at the same time reassures the maritime community, as they are aware that ICG will swiftly respond to any distress call or life-threatening situation at sea.
- The deterrence created by the ICG is not limited to the Indian waters, but collaboration with friendly littoral states as per provisions of bilateral cooperation agreements resulted in successful apprehension and seizure of drugs in Indian Ocean Region (IOR).
- Naval Innovation and Indigenisation Organisation
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Recently, the Naval Innovation and Indigenisation Organisation (NIIO) has been launched by the Defence Minister of India.
- Objective: To foster innovation and indigenisation for self-reliance in defence in keeping with the vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat.
- It will put in place dedicated structures for the end-users to interact with academia and industry.
- Structure: The NIIO is a three-tiered organisation. Naval Technology Acceleration Council (N-TAC) will bring together the twin aspects of innovation and indigenisation and provide apex level directives.
- Working group under the N-TAC will implement the projects.
- Technology Development Acceleration Cell (TDAC) has been created for induction of emerging disruptive technology in an accelerated time frame. Indian Navy already has a functional Directorate of Indigenisation (DoI) and the new structures will build upon the ongoing indigenisation initiatives, as well as focus on innovation.
- A compendium (concise collection of information) of Indian Navy’s indigenisation perspective plans titled ‘SWAVLAMBAN’ has also been
- The Draft Defence Production and Export Promotion Policy 2020 envisages Service Headquarters establishing an Innovation and Indigenisation Organisation within existing resources.
- The defence minister highlighted the Indian Navy’s significant progress in indigenous design of warships and suggested to focus on design and development of armaments.
- The Navy has an in-house design bureau, which has made progress in designing the ‘float’ and ‘move’ (propulsion) components.
- However, there is a heavy reliance on imports for armaments, called the ‘fight’ component.
- PURA Initiative
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The Pune Rural Administration has been able to implement the Provision of Urban Amenities in Rural Areas (PURA) initiative amid Covid-19 pandemic.
- PURA was mooted by the former President Dr. Abdul Kalam in January 2003 as a way of empowering and accelerating rural development.
- The Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) implemented the PURA scheme on a pilot basis in seven clusters for a period of three years (2004- 05 to 2006-07).
- PURA 2.0 as a central sector scheme was launched in 2012 focussing on the development of potential growth centres such as census towns.
- Objective: Provision of livelihood opportunities and urban amenities in rural areas to bridge the rural – urban divide.
- Mission: Holistic and accelerated development of compact areas around a potential growth centre in a Gram Panchayat (or a group of Gram Panchayats) through Public Private Partnership (PPP) framework for providing livelihood opportunities and urban amenities to improve the quality of life in rural areas.
- Amenities and economic activities provided under PURA include Water and Sewerage, Construction and maintenance of Village streets, Drainage, Solid Waste Management, Skill Development, village street lighting, telecom, electricity generation, village linked tourism, etc. In 2014-15, the government made no allocation to the PURA scheme and instead introduced the Rurban Mission with an initial allocation of 100 crore.
- The aim of the Rurban Mission is to create 300 rural growth clusters across the country.