Union Home Minister Amit Shah told the Lok Sabha on Monday that Manipur would be brought under the Inner Line Permit (ILP) system, thereby exempting it from the provisions of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019.
Chief Minister N. Biren Singh had earlier said the State should be exempted from the Bill.
Speaking to The Hindu, Mr. Singh said, “We are not opposed to the Bill. We want exemption. Our land is very small and population also less.”
Mr. Shah said in the Lok Sabha later, “Nagaland and Mizoram are protected by the ILP and it will continue to remain protected. Keeping in mind the feelings of Manipur, we’re including them into the ILP as well,” he said.
As per the Bill, the amendments to the Citizenship Act, 1955, if approved, will not apply to the tribal areas of Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Tripura as included in the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution and the States of Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram and Nagaland that are protected by the ILP system. The addition of Manipur to the list of ILPprotected States means that the Bill will only be applicable in some parts of Tripura and Assam.
Citizens of other States require the ILP to visit the protected areas as per the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873. This means that the illegal migrants from the six minority communities who will become Indian citizens as per the proposed amendment will not be able to take up jobs, open businesses or settle down in these areas and will require a permit to enter the States.
“The ILP can be extended to Manipur through an executive order. Such an arrangement existed before. The Home Minister, when he moves the Bill, is likely to announce that Manipur will be exempted. We have been assured by him,” Mr. Singh had said earlier in the day.
Several northeastern States, including the BJP-ruled Manipur, have erupted in protests against the Bill. There is a fear that “outsiders” could settle in these areas, affecting the indigenous communities and local tribes.
Citizenship law amendment goes against non-discriminatory norms in the Constitution
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 (CAB), is brazenly discriminatory and it is only a matter of time before its constitutionality is subjected to severe judicial scrutiny. The government’s obstinacy in going ahead with it, despite opposition in Parliament, as well as from enlightened sections, is unfortunate. In both its intent and wording, the proposed amendment singles out a community for hostile treatment. In short, the Bill chooses to open its citizenship door to non-Muslims from three nations with a Muslim majority — Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. The ostensible reason: an opportunity to members of minority communities from these countries who had entered India prior to December 31, 2014, to apply for citizenship through naturalization. The residential requirement for this category for naturalization is reduced from 11 years to five.
The Bill carefully avoids the words ‘persecuted minorities’, but the Statement of Objects and Reasons says “many persons belonging to Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities have faced persecution on grounds of religions” in these three countries.
Further, it refers to Home Ministry notifications in 2015-2016 through which it had exempted these undocumented migrants from the adverse penal consequences under the Passport (Entry into India) Act, 1920, and the Foreigners’ Act, 1946. The CAB creates a category of people on the basis of their religion and renders them eligible for its beneficial effects.
A key argument against the CAB is that it will not extend to those persecuted in Myanmar and Sri Lanka, from where Rohingya Muslims and Tamils are staying in the country as refugees. Further, it fails to allow Shia and Ahmadiyya Muslims, who also face persecution, to apply for citizenship. The exemption from the application of the CAB’s provisions in tribal areas in Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Tripura, and the Inner Line Permit areas in Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Mizoram, with Manipur to be added soon, is clearly based on political expediency, even if it is in line with the constitutional guarantees given to indigenous populations and statutory protection given to ILP areas. It demonstrates the need for careful and meaningful categorization, something that the main provisions fail to do. The central feature of the equal protection of the law envisaged in Article 14 is that the basis for classifying a group for a particular kind of treatment should bear a rational nexus with the overall objective. If protecting persecuted neighbourhood minorities is the objective, the classification may fail the test of constitutionality because of the exclusion of some countries and communities using religion. It would be a sad day for the republic if legislation that challenges its founding principles of equality and secularism is allowed to be passed.
The State at present has 42,389 pending cases of sexual offences against children and 25,749 pending cases of rape and sexual crimes against women, said State Law Minister Brajesh Pathak.
Centre begins training States on piped water quality standard
Ministry yet to respond on BIS draft quality control order
The Bureau of Indian Standards is preparing the ground for enforcement of piped water quality standards with a workshop for State officials. However, it is not yet clear whether the Centre’s own flagship mission to provide piped water to all households by 2024 will implement the BIS standard.
Providing safe drinking water to the common public is a primary requirement for ensuring health, Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said on Monday.
He was speaking at a workshop organised by BIS to disseminate information about the requirements of IS 10500:2012, the quality standard. States were informed about the certification schemes and testing facilities required for compliance with it.
Unlike the BIS standard for bottled water, which is mostly produced by private companies, the standard for piped water — largely supplied by government agencies — is not yet mandatory.
Mr. Paswan emphasised that the Central government and BIS were ready to take all steps and provide handholding support to the State governments and various agencies. However, interacting with journalists after his inaugural speech, he admitted that there has been no response as yet from the Union Jal Shakti Ministry with regards to a draft quality control order to make the piped water standard mandatory.
Senior Ministry officials and spokespersons failed to respond to The Hindu’s queries on the draft quality control order, and its adoption by the Jal Jeevan Mission.
Jal Shakti is the nodal Ministry for the Jal Jeevan Mission to provide functional household tap connections to 14.6 crore rural households by 2024. Centre begins training States on piped water quality standard Ministry yet to respond on BIS draft quality control order
Ship Recycling Bill passed by Parliament
Parliament on Monday passed a Bill that provides for the regulated recycling of ships, which is in accordance with the Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships, 2009 adopted by the International Maritime Organisation.
Passed by the Rajya Sabha by voice vote, the Recycling of Ships Bill, 2019 lays out rules for existing facilities and is applicable to all ships registered in India or entering Indian waters, apart from warships and other government ships. The ships should not have hazardous material, for which a national authority would be created to carry out checks.
Shipping Minister Mansukh Mandaviya said the 7,500-km-long coastline gives the opportunity to expand ship-breaking facilities, which would lead to creation of jobs. He said India accounted for 30% of the breaking that happens currently, with 300 ships being recycled here every year.
Bill on an extension of SC, ST quota in LS, Assemblies introduced
It also proposes scrapping of nomination of Anglo-Indians
A Bill seeking to extend by 10 years reservation to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the Lok Sabha and the Assemblies and remove the provision of nominating two members of the AngloIndian community to the Lok Sabha was introduced in the House on Monday.
The reservation given to SCs, STs and the Anglo-Indian community for the past 70 years is to end on January 25, 2020.
Trinamool Congress MP Saugata Roy opposed the introduction of the Constitution (126th) Amendment Bill, saying the Anglo-Indian community was being deprived of representation.
Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that while the merits of the Bill could be gone into during the debate, the extension of reservation to the SC and ST communities was for representation, while the Anglo-Indian community was nominated.
“According to the 2011 census, there are 296 members of the Anglo Indian community in the entire country. However, I would still maintain that we have not closed our minds to revisiting the issue,” he said.
The Bill was then cleared for introduction by voice vote to be taken up for consideration and passing later.
We have reason to be concerned about delays in rape trials. But a Hyderabad-like solution is absolutely out of the question. The new Chief Justice of India has rightly ruled out the instant justice model in a speech recently.
The right thing to do in rape cases is to appoint senior judges in fast track courts; no adjournments should be permitted, and
rape courts should be put under the direct control of High Courts;
the district judge should not have any power to interfere, and the trial must be completed within three months.
The annual Climate Summit, with increasing levels of concentration of greenhouse gases, raises questions on global climate policy.
The world’s major emitter has rejected multilateralism, premised on burden sharing. The European Union’s ambition of ‘net’ zero emissions by 2050 obfuscates needed societal change by ignoring the embedded carbon in imports — a third of their emissions of carbon dioxide. Both are shifting the burden to India and China.
The policy problem is that the Climate Treaty considers symptoms (emissions of greenhouse gases), rather than the causes (use of natural resources). India, which is responsible for just 3% of cumulative emissions, is the most carbon efficient and sustainable major economy.
Divergent resource use
Excessive resource use by a fifth of the world population in a small part of the planet in the West is still responsible for half of global material use and the cause of climate change. Asia with half the world’s population is responsible for less than half of material use, and living in harmony with nature.
Three shifts in natural resource use have taken place in the last 400 years: from agriculture to industry; rural to urban; and, livelihood to well-being.
Colonialism and its aftermath of multinational corporations was the driver of the first shift, infrastructure of the second, and societal notions of progress of the third. Only the first two global trends show limited convergence and stabilization. The third diverges sharply between material abundance in the West and societal well-being in India and China.
Consumption patterns of primary material use for the provision of major services are driven by diverse values that include both global trends transforming human societies — for example, urbanization, economic globalization and digitization, as well as national pathways to achieve prosperity.
At the national-level, resource use is primarily construction material and energy use in buildings, mobility and manufacturing as well as food, which together lead to human well-being.
More than half of natural resource use and global emissions occurred after 1950, driven by the gradual shift of three-quarters of the global population to cities.
National natural resource-use accelerated in two distinct phases with very different origins and impacts. In North America and Europe, resource use accelerated after 1950, not with industrial resource use from 1850.By 1970, three-quarters of their population had moved to cities, characterized as “unprecedented prosperity”, leading to the trajectory towards climate change.
China’s acceleration of natural resource use from 2000, also driven by urbanization, is characterized as “unprecedented growth”. Different values and the objective of increasing well-being, rather than wealth, led to China, in 2016, having the same per-capita emissions of carbon dioxide as the West had in 1885.
The shares of material use of the different activities in cities in China have remained constant since 1995 as increase in wealth does not modify the structural, economic and social changes, energy and material uses in civilizational states. Clearly, there will be no convergence in global material use as values, along with digital service economies in cities, will continue to shape the future. The pathway adopted by China can now be compared and contrasted with the West, as it has come up to that level of urbanization and well-being.
The contribution of the United States to resource use, or cumulative emissions of carbon dioxide, peaked at 40% in 1950, with rapid infrastructure development in Europe, declined to 26% and is likely to remain at this level, reflecting its direction and intensity.
By 2015, global population had doubled when emissions in China began to stabilize and accounted for 12% of total cumulative emissions. Asia and Africa will peak at per-capita levels that are a third of those of the West.
Different views of prosperity
India and China, civilizational states with a population nearly eight times that of the U.S., have re-defined progress.
In China, electricity consumption per-capita is a third of the European Union (EU) and a sixth of the U.S. Residential energy consumption has increased at a rate less than half the increase in GDP, and corresponds to the increase in urban population, showing limited increase with more disposable household income.
China also has less than a sixth of the number of cars with respect to population than the EU, while the U.S. has nearly two times that number. In China, nearly 40% of the distance travelled is by public transport, which is two times that of the EU.
While the number of cars in China is projected to double by 2040, half the new cars are expected to be electric vehicles.
China has the world’s most extensive electric high-speed rail system. In Beijing, threequarters of public transport buses are already electric. Asian household savings as a percent of GDP are two times that of the U.S.
Measures for global sustainability should draw lessons from India and China. For example, transport emissions are the fastest growing emissions worldwide, projected to become half of global emissions, and in the future more polluting than coal use.
India and China are global leaders in sustainability not only because of their low per-capita resource use but also because of their contribution to peak oil around 2035 as they adopt electric vehicles supported by solar and wind renewable energy. By then, India and China are expected to have half the global renewable capacity and electric vehicles.
By 2040 more than half of global wealth is again going to be in Asia; the low carbon social development model adopted by India and China will become the world system, ensuring global sustainability. Then the pattern of natural resource use adopted by western civilization will more clearly be seen as a short-term anomaly rather than collective transformation or unified evolution of civilization. Much before that, alternative strategies led by India and China should replace the ineffective Climate Treaty.