Daily Current Affairs : 3rd October 2020

Daily Current Affairs for UPSC CSE

Topics Covered

  1. Abetment to Suicide
  2. Phased manufacturing programme (PMP)
  3. Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action
  4. Facts for Prelims

1 . Abetment to Suicide

Context : In a recent judgement Supreme Court held in a judgement that Intention to abet suicide cannot be assumed, it has to be evident

What is Abetment to Suicide

  • According to the 306 section of the Indian Penal Code, a person abetting the suicide of another person shall be punished with imprisonment up to 10 years and shall also be liable to fine.
  • Abetting a suicide is a non-bailable charge.
  • A person is guilty of abetment when:
    • He instigates someone to commit suicide (or)
    • He is part of a conspiracy to make a person commit suicide (or)
    • He intentionally helps the victim to commit suicide by doing an act or by not doing something that he was bound to do
  • As per the 305 section of the IPC, if any person under eighteen years of age, any insane person, any delirious person, any idiot, or any person in a state of intoxication commits suicide, whoever abets the commission of such suicide, shall be punished with death or imprisonment for life, or imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years, and shall also be liable to fine.

Details of the Judgement

  • According to the Supreme Court judgment the intention to abet suicide cannot be assumed and it needs to be backed by solid, visible proof
  • The police have to establish that an accused wanted to abet the suicide. ‘Abetment’ is defined in Section 107 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
  • According to the judgement in order to prove mens rea, there has to be something on record to establish or show that the appellant herein had a guilty mind and in furtherance of that state of mind, abetted the suicide of the deceased. The ingredient of mens rea cannot be assumed to be ostensibly present but has to be visible and conspicuous

2 .  Phased manufacturing programme (PMP)

Context : Mobile phone prices are expected to rise about 3% as the government has imposed 10% duty on the import of displays. The duty on display assembly and touch panel was proposed to be applied from October 1 under a phased manufacturing programme (PMP) announced in 2016 in consensus with the industry.

About Phased manufacturing programme (PMP)

  • In a bid to make India a mobile manufacturing hub of the world the Centre has introduced Phased Manufacturing Programme (PMP).
  • The scheme would promote domestic production of mobile phones by providing tax relief and other incentives on components and accessories used for the devices.
  • The Phased Manufacturing Programme has been notified with the objective of substantially increasing the domestic value addition for establishment of a robust Cellular mobile handsets manufacturing eco-system in India.
  • The Budget 2015-16 introduced a differential Excise Duty for domestic mobile manufacturers. Under this, the Countervailing Duty (CVT) on imports at 12.5% and Excise Duty at 1% without input tax credit (or 12.5% with input tax credit) were given to domestic cell phone manufacturers. This was done because earlier it was cheaper to import mobile components or finished goods after India signed the World Trade Organisation’s ITA-1 pact (Information Technology Agreement). This pact exempts duties from several IT products.
  • The differential duty approach has helped in increasing the local production of mobile handsets from 11 crore units valued at Rs 54,000 crore in 2015-16 to 17.5 crore units valued at Rs 90,000 crore in 2016-17, according to the official statement. It also says that the share of imported mobile handsets in total domestic demand is gradually coming down — from Rs 56,000 crore in 2015-16 to Rs 40,000 crore in 2016-17.
  • The PMP aims to take this growth story to a new level and it is estimated that the value of India’s domestic mobile handset manufacturing industry would grow exponentially over the next 5-10 years.

Main Aim

  • At present, India imports basic chipset for mobile handsets but there has been a spurt in the production of other mobile components.
  • Over the next 10-12 years, PMP aims to make India a manufacturing hub of mobile components.
  • With PMP, the share of locally-procured components in the manufacturing of feature phones will go up from about 15 to 37 per cent and for smart phones from about 10 to 26 per cent, leading to the setting up of a “robust indigenous mobile manufacturing ecosystem in India.
  • The PMP would be rolled out over a period of time in a phase-wise manner. In the financial year (2017-18), the PMP covers domestic production of components like Mechanics, Die Cut Parts, Microphone and Receiver, Key Pad and USB Cable. In 2018-19, it would cover printed circuit board assembly, camera module and connectores, while in 2019-20, the PMP would provide incentives for local production of display assembly, touch panel/cover glass assembly and vibrator motor or ringer.

3 . Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action

Context : Union Minister for Women and Child Development Smriti Irani addressed the United Nations General Assembl on the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action to highlight India’s achievements in gender equality.

About Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action

  • In 1995, 189 governments were joined by 17,000 participants and 30,000 non-governmental activists in Beijing for the opening of the Fourth World Conference on Women.
  • The outcome of this momentous conference was the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (BPfA).
  • The BPfA has since been declared: “the most progressive blueprint ever for advancing women’s rights”, (UN Women).
  • The document identifies 12 critical areas of concern. “In each critical area of concern, the problem is diagnosed and strategic objectives are proposed with concrete actions to be taken by various actors in order to achieve those objectives” (BPfA).
  • In this way, the BPfA becomes a comprehensive guide to understanding and combatting the key barriers to gender equality.

The twelve critical areas of concern are as follows:

  • Women and the environment
  • Women in power and decision-making
  • The girl child
  • Women and the economy
  • Women and poverty
  • Violence against women
  • Human rights of women
  • Education and training of women
  • Institutional mechanisms for the advancement of women
  • Women and health
  • Women and the media
  • Women and armed conflict

Have the Goals Been Met?

  • Twenty-five years after the adoption of BPfA, more women and girls have access to free, quality education, awareness and action against gender-based violence is improving, and we are seeing a gradual increase in women in positions of power and decision-making.
  • However, no country has achieved complete equality for women and girls. Even in regions that are close to achieving gender equality in law, the lived reality falls short.

India’s initiatives

  • India projected Several legislations, such as those pertaining to sexual harassment of women at workplace, protection of women from domestic violence, protection of children from sexual offences, and our criminal laws’ amendments, have been strong enablers of women empowerment and protection of children, especially girls, over the past six years
  • She also mentioned reservation for women in local bodies such as the panchayat; the ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ scheme; and the linking “over 200 million women” with the formal banking system as efforts to ensure gender equality. 
  • The government of India took a series of measures for ensuring safety, security and well-being of women during the COVID pandemic. These included One Stop Centres providing medical, psychological, legal, police and shelter facilities under a common roof. Additionally, during the pandemic all efforts are being made to ensure community care for women, especially pregnant and lactating women and women in vulnerable situations.”

4 . Facts for Prelims

Kisan Rail

  • Kisan Rail are special seasonal trains identified by the government for farmers to send fresh fruits, vegetables and other perishable goods to buyers across India.

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