Daily Current Affairs : 9th July

Daily Current Affairs for UPSC CSE

Topics Covered

  1. Utkarsh 2022
  2. UN Commission on Human Rights
  3. Human Rights Court
  4. Digital Communication commission and TRAI
  5. Facts for Prelims : Greece PM

1 . Utkarsh 2022


Context : The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) board, which met in New Delhi, finalised a three- year roadmap to improve regulation and supervision, among other functions of the central bank.

About Utkarsh 2022

  • Utkarsh 2022 is the medium term strategy in line with the global central banks’ plan to strengthen the regulatory and supervisory mechanism
  • It is a three-year road map for medium term objective to be achieved for improving regulation, supervision of the central bank
  • An internal committee was formed, which was anchored by outgoing Deputy Governor Viral Acharya, to identify issues that needed to be addressed over the next three years.
  • While around a dozen areas were identified by the committee, some board members felt that areas could be filtered and lesser number of areas can be identified for implementation in the next three years.
  • The idea is that the central bank plays a proactive role and takes preemptive action to avoid any crisis

2 . UN Commission on Human Rights


Context : Geneva-based Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), which last year released its first-ever report on Kashmir, issued an ‘update’ of the 2018 report, claiming that “neither India nor Pakistan have taken any concrete steps to address the numerous concerns raised”.

Details of the report

  • As per the report India and Pakistan had failed to improve the situation in Kashmir and not taken any concrete steps to address the numerous concerns raised in its earlier report. Last year, the Office of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights released its first-ever report on Kashmir, urging action by both countries to reduce tensions.
  • A UN human rights report on the situation in Kashmir and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir from May 2018 to April 2019, says the number of civilian casualties reported over the 12-month period may be the highest in over a decade,” the new report from the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)
  • In Kashmir, accountability for violations committed by members of the Indian security forces remains virtually non-existent
  • The update made wide ranging recommendations to the governments of India and Pakistan, and urged the Human Rights Council (HRC) to explore possibilities of setting up an international commission of inquiry into the allegations of human rights abuse in Kashmir.

About OHCHR

  • The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (UN Human Rights) is the leading UN entity on human rights.
  • The General Assembly entrusted both the High Commissioner and her Office with a unique mandate to promote and protect all human rights for all people.
  • The United Nations human rights programme aims to ensure that the protection and enjoyment of human rights is a reality in the lives of all people.
  • The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) works to offer the best expertise and support to the different human rights monitoring mechanisms in the United Nations system :
    • UN Charter-based bodies, including the Human Rights Council,
    • Bodies created under the international human rights treaties and made up of independent experts mandated to monitor State parties’ compliance with their treaty obligations.

Charter based Bodies

  • Charter bodies include the UN Human Rights Council and Special Procedures.

About UNHRC

  • The Human Rights Council replaced the Commission on Human Rights
  • This intergovernmental body, which meets in Geneva 10 weeks a year, is composed of 47 elected United Nations Member States who serve for an initial period of 3 years, and cannot be elected for more than two consecutive terms.
  • The Human Rights Council is a forum empowered to prevent abuses, inequity and discrimination, protect the most vulnerable, and expose perpetrators.
  • The Human Rights Council is a separate entity from OHCHR.

Special Procedures

  • Special Procedures is the general name given to the mechanisms established by the Commission on Human Rights and assumed by the Human Rights Council to address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world.
  • Special Procedures are either an individual -a special rapporteur or independent expert-or a working group.
  • They are prominent, independent experts working on a voluntary basis, appointed by the Human Rights Council.
  • Special Procedures’ mandates usually call on mandate-holders to examine, monitor, advise and publicly report on human rights situations in specific countries or territories, known as country mandates, or on human rights issues of particular concern worldwide, known as thematic mandates.
  • All report to the Human Rights Council on their findings and recommendations, and many also report to the General Assembly. They are sometimes the only mechanism that will alert the international community to certain human rights issues, as they can address situations in all parts of the world without the requirement for countries to have had ratified a human rights instrument.

Treaty-based bodies

  • There are nine core international human rights treaties. Since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, all UN Member States have ratified at least one core international human rights treaty, and 80 percent have ratified four or more.
  • There are currently ten human rights treaty bodies, which are committees of independent experts.
  • Nine of these treaty bodies monitor implementation of the core international human rights treaties while the tenth treaty body, the Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture, established under the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture, monitors places of detention in States parties to the Optional Protocol.
  • The treaty bodies are created in accordance with the provisions of the treaty that they monitor. OHCHR supports the work of treaty bodies and assists them in harmonizing their working methods and reporting requirements through their secretariats. 
  • Ten human rights treaty bodies that monitor implementation of the core international human rights treaties:
    • Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD)
    • Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR)
    • Human Rights Committee (CCPR)
    • Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)
    • Committee against Torture (CAT) 
    • Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC)
    • Committee on Migrant Workers (CMW)
    • Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (SPT)
    • Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)
    • Committee on Enforced Disappearances (CED)

3 . Human Rights Court


Context : The Supreme Court on Monday sought a response from the Central government, the States and the Union Territories on the prolonged delay for over a quarter of a century to establish exclusive human rights courts in each district and appointing special public prosecutors in them.

About Human Rights Court

  • Protection of Human Rights Act 1993 had called for the establishment of special courts in each district to conduct speedy trial of offences arising out of violation and abuse of human rights.
  • Section 30 of the Act envisages that a State government, with the concurrence of the Chief Justice of High Court, by notification, specify for each district a court of session as a court of human rights for the speedy trial of violation of rights.
  • Section 31 of the Act provides the State government to specify and appoint a special public prosecutor in that court.

Need

  • India Human Rights Report 2018, which was published by the Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2018, United States Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor threw light on various rights violations such as police brutality, torture and excess custodial and encounters deaths, horrible conditions in prisons and detention centres, arbitrary arrests and unlawful detention, denial of fair public trial, the petition
  • From 2001 to 2010, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) recorded that 14,231 i.e. 4.33 persons died in police and judicial custody in the country. This includes 1,504 deaths in police custody and 12,727 deaths in judicial custody from 2001-2002 to 2009-2010, and a large majority of these deaths being a direct consequence of torture in custody, 
  • To uphold and protect the basic and fundamental rights of an individual it is an indispensable obligation upon the State to provide affordable, effective and speedy trial of offences related to violation of human rights which can only be achieved by setting up special courts in each district as provided under the Act

4 . Digital Communication Commission & TRAI


Context : Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has stuck to its earlier recommendation on the forthcoming spectrum auction, including on base price and valuation of spectrum to be put on sale. Digital Communications Commission (DCC) — the highest decision making body in the DoT — had asked the sectoral regulator to reconsider its recommendations to ensure competition and greater participation in auctions.

About Digital Communications Commission 

  • The Telecom Commission was set up by the Government of India in 1989 with administrative and financial powers of the Government of India to deal with various aspects of Telecommunications.
  • The Government in 2018, has re-designated the ‘Telecom Commission’ as the ‘Digital Communications Commission

Composition

  • The Digital Communications Commission consists of a Chairman. The Secretary to the Government of India in the Department of Telecommunications is the ex-officio Chairman of the Digital Communications Commission.
  • Four full time members, who are ex-officio Secretaries to the Government of India in the Department of Telecommunications
  • Four part time members who are the Secretaries to the Government of India in the concerned Departments.

Functions

  • Formulating the policy of Department of Telecommunications for approval of the Government
  • Preparing the budget for the Department of Telecommunications for each financial year and getting it approved by the Government
  • Implementation of Government’s policy in all matters concerning telecommunication

About TRAI

  • Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) was established by an Act of Parliament, called the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Act, 1997, to regulate telecom services, including fixation/revision of tariffs for telecom services which were earlier vested in the Central Government.
  • TRAI’s mission is to create and nurture conditions for growth of telecommunications in the country in a manner and at a pace which will enable India to play a leading role in emerging global information society.
  • One of the main objectives of TRAI is to provide a fair and transparent policy environment which promotes a level playing field and facilitates fair competition.
  • The TRAI Act was amended by an ordinance, effective from 24 January 2000, establishing a Telecommunications Dispute Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) to take over the adjudicatory and disputes functions from TRAI.
  • TDSAT was set up to adjudicate any dispute between a licensor and a licensee, between two or more service providers, between a service provider and a group of consumers, and to hear and dispose of appeals against any direction, decision or order of TRAI.

5 . Facts for Prelims


Greece PM

  • Kyriakos Mitsotakis becomes Greece’s new PM 
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