The apex court has now categorically ruled that the daughters’ right flows from their birth.
The court has rightly recognised that the amendment conferred equal status as a coparcener on daughters in Hindu families governed by Mitakshara law, and this right accrued by birth.
This position was crystallised in a 2015judgment of the Supreme Court in Prakash and Others vs. Phulavati.
This judgment now stands overruled.
The legislation, even though it comes into effect on a prescribed date, is retroactivein its applicationas it is linked to birth, an antecedent event.
It also underscores that the legislation makes it clear that the daughter’s rights are the same “as that of a son,” and “as if she had been a son at the time of birth”.
The coparcenary status given to daughters has been a subject of reform in many States, particularly in south India, long before the UPA regime brought in the amendment for the whole country.
Kerala had introduced legislation in 1975, Andhra Pradesh in 1986, Tamil Nadu in 1989 and Maharashtra and Karnataka in 1994.
The legislative aim was that a flagrant discrimination between sons and daughters in entitlement to an equal share in coparcenary property, that is property inherited from one’s father, grandfather or great-grandfather, should be done away with.
Independent but not alone
For India, August 15 is first and foremost Independence Day.
But, as we in the U.K. mark 75 years since peace was achieved in Asia, this is also our opportunity to thank you for your immense contributions and, in particular, the campaign in Burma.
From Asia to Africa, the Mediterranean to the Pacific, millions fought for freedom in the six-yearlong struggle to rid the world of the tyranny and evil of Axis aggressors.
Those who served in that vast Pacific theatre are often referred to as the “Forgotten Army” but we must never let the memory of their sacrifices and achievements slip from our minds.
On land, at sea and in the air, Indians formed the largest all-volunteer force in the world, with over 2.5 million fighting in Europe, NorthAfrica, Singapore, HongKong and, Burma.
What is more, India provided almost 200 million tonnes of coal, six million tonnes of iron ore and more than one million tonnes of steel to the Pacific war effort, and countless Indian non-combatants securedsupplylines.
Those numbers can’t possibly do justice to their bravery.
At Imphal, Indian forces fought even after the siege was lifted. Rao Abdul Hafiz Panwa became the youngest Indian recipient of the Victoria Cross — overrunning Japanese positions despite mortal wounds.
At Kohima, an Indian-Britishforce numbering 1,500men held its own against 15,000enemytroops for two weeks despite phosphorous bombardments and ferocious infantry attacks.
The celebrated “Black Cat” 17th Infantry Division of the Indian Army were in continuous combat during the three-year long Burma Campaign.
In total some 87,000Indians paid the ultimate price.
But their efforts also turned the tide of the war.
No wonder the commander of the 14th Army in Burma, Field Marshal Slim, described his Indian divisions as “among the best in the world”.
Today’s challenges are different and our relationship has also evolved.
But we face shared dangers, whether from pandemics or piracy, extremism or enemies operating below the threshold of conventional conflict.
We hold shared values and commitments to justice, stability and freemarkets.
We are on the same side and have a mutual interest in standing together – it is our alliances that give us the ultimate edge.
And the India-U.K. partnership has plenty of room to grow.
We already have sevenRoyal Navy vessels operating in the Western Indian Ocean.
Our Armed Forces exercise together biannually and our Defence and International Security Partnership is opening up collaborations in everything from jet engines to cyber technology.
And, as you pursue your Atmanirbhar Bharat vision you will find Global Britain is eager to work together in a range of areas from defence modernisation to maritime technology. We are determined to elevate our partnership to the next level.
We are living through a new era of uncertainty but eight decades ago, our great forebears showed us the way ahead.
Seventy-fiveyears on, India is a proud independent nation but you are emphatically not alone.
Our common history proves that we are stronger facing adversity together and now is the time to write our shared future in the interests of peace, purpose, and prosperity.
The welcome decision by the Kingdom of Tonga to outlaw the worst forms of child labour is the first time in the International Labour Organization (ILO)’s 101-year history that a labour standard has been universally ratified.
Convention 182, which was adopted in the 1999annual international labour conference, prohibits the sexual exploitation of children, trafficking, deployment in armed conflict and other conditions that compromise their overall well-being.
The Convention complements the ILO’s efforts under the 1973 Minimum Age Convention to prevent the employment of children below a lower age threshold.
Under the influence of both these ILO standards, millions of young boys and girls have been rescued from hazardous conditions of work.
Concomitantly, these have resulted in significant increases in enrolmentsinprimary education.
The landmark ratification, however, does not detract from the enormity of the challenge that remains.
An estimated 152 million are trapped in child labour and 72 million of them are engaged in hazardous work.
If anything, current efforts would have to be stepped up significantly to achieve the ambitious goal of total abolition of the scourge of child labour by 2025.
The historic first universal ratification of a global labour standard may be an occasion for celebration; it is nonetheless a moment for sober reflection.
Though belated, India has signalled its legal commitment to the elimination of child labour with its 2017 ratification of Convention 182 and the instrument prescribing the minimum age of work for children.
As the world prepares to designate2021 as the year to abolish child labour, governments must seize the moment to instil hope in the future generations.
Schools without freedom
For those serving in government-runschools, there is no provision in the rule book for freedom on any count that matters.
SinceBritish days, the bureaucracy views school functionaries with the deepest suspicion, both in their capacities and integrity.
No matter how senior you are, your job is to silently follow the orders and circulars issued by the directorate and the examination board.
In private schools, you notice additional players who keep principals and teachers under a fat thumb.
The virus has spread across the country, but its impact in different regions is uneven.
India has over six lakh villages. No single picture can cover their diverse geography and economics.
Why the virus has not affected the rural hinterland as much as it has affected cities is far from clear.
Many experts think that the uneven spread is merely a matter of poor reporting from villages.
If village schools had some autonomy, many would have found local conditions good enough to allow children to come for their meals and spend some time studying.
Decisions regarding the daily time span and classsize might have been taken in accordance with distancing norms by schools’ heads and teachers.
Child psychology has generated sufficient evidence to say that in its formative stages the human mind needs opportunities to observe natural phenomenon, represent it in different forms and analyse it.
Villageschools are in a far better position to do so than city schools.
The monsoon creates great opportunities for noticing, recording and examining nature.
Egrets and other large birds tread at leisurely paces in wet paddy fields, looking for food.
They are a joy to watch and sketch in their different postures.
Ants come out of their subterraneous homes when the rainwater floods them. Butterflies migrate in this season. These are just examples; there are a hundred things to observe in plants and trees.
Village teachers can bring great energy into their pedagogy by encouraging children to spend time outdoors for assigned observation.
Observation and reflection are good for promoting numeracy and literacy too.
In fact, mathematics is learnt best when you are excited about something and find it worth counting. The same is true of writing and reading.
Curiously enough, technologyenthusiasts have seldom spoken about the absence of basic learning equipment in our schools.
Something as smallandsimple as a magnifying glass is alien to our primary schools.
Great expenditure is made on purchasing technology for schools, but it does not cover binoculars or microscopes.
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