There has been much outrage expressed over the denial of a sipper and straw to Father Stan Swamy.
Father Swamy, the 83-year-old activist who suffers from Parkinson’s disease, was arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in October for his alleged involvement in the 2018 Bhima Koregaon violence and charged under the draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.
Prison - overcrowded and underfunded
Both international and domestic laws recognise and protect the rights of disabled prisoners
UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)
The obligation encompasses the provision of auxiliary aids relevant to the disability to secure the inherent dignity of the prisoner to enable them to live independently and participate in all aspects of their daily lives.
The Nelson Mandela Rules - approved by the UN General Assembly through a resolution in 2015 - “make all reasonable accommodation and adjustments to ensure that prisoners with physical, mental or other disabilities have full and effective access to prison life on equitable basis”
Apart from the constitutional guarantees under Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution available to persons with disabilities, there is specific Indian legislation on the subject.
The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016
The fundamental tenet on which Indian criminal law operates is that an accused is presumed innocent until proven guilty.
The denial of his rights by the justice system not only constitutes a legal wrong but also displays an absence of compassion.
It is the absence of compassion that ultimately corrupts the decency of any society.
In his excellent memoir, Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, Bryan Stevenson writes that the true measure of a society’s commitment to justice, the rule of law, fairness and equality, cannot be measured by how it treats the rich, the powerful, the privileged and the respected. But that the true measure of a society’s character is how it treats the poor, the disfavoured, the accused, the incarcerated and the condemned. It is time for the Indian justice system to stand up to this ideal.
Three years after joining the eight-nation Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), India hosted the SCO heads of governments (HoG) meeting for the first time on Monday.
“Plan of Priority Practical Measures for 2021-2022 to overcome the socio-economic, financial and food consequences of COVID-19 in the region”
Modi was represented by Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu, who made strong observations on cross-border terrorism; he called it the SCO region’s “biggest challenge”, in comments aimed at Pakistan.
The SCO is a rare forum where India-Pakistan troops take part in joint exercises under the Regional Anti-Terror Structure
India also marked its differences with China over the BRI by not joining other SCO members in a paragraph endorsing the BRI.
The SCO provides India a convenient channel for its outreach — trade and strategic ties — to Central Asian countries.
It has afforded a platform, when needed, for bilateral discussions with the two countries India has the most tense ties with: China and Pakistan.
It has used the SCO for talks with China, including this year amidst the LAC stand-off, when Rajnath Singh and S. Jaishankar met their counterparts on the sidelines of SCO meets.
Novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) - source is still unknown even 11 months after WHO reported the first case.
Knowing the natural reservoirs and intermediate hosts and the events that allowed the virus to jump across the species barrier are important in prevention.
The global health body is still determined to find the virus’s origin
WHO’s two-member team did not visit Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak.
The reluctance has only increased after mounting international ire over its reporting the outbreak and the huge economic cost of the pandemic globally.
There is strong evidence that the virus originated in bats and probably spread to humans through an intermediate species.
Winners who disappoint
Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed launched a large-scale military offensive against separatists
Had the Nobel Committee made a mistake in awarding the 2019 Peace Prize to Mr. Abiy, who until last year was hailed as a beacon for democratising Ethiopia and befriending Eritrea?
There was similar heartburn over President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia failing to live up to ideals.
Santos won the Peace Prize in 2016 for ending the decades-long civil war with FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) guerrillas.
Despite his image as a peacemaker, Mr. Santos’s presidency saw continuing paramilitary excesses and rampant human rights violations by agents of the state.
Likewise, when the Nobel Committee gave the 2009 Peace Prize to U.S. President Barack Obama, it proved a controversial choice.
Shortly after receiving the Prize, Mr. Obama ordered an American troop surge in Afghanistan, deepening a bloody war.
In 2011, he also backed a disastrous military intervention in Libya and subsequently abandoned it when there was chaos.
Yet another much-maligned Nobel Peace Prize winner is Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi. She was chosen in 1991 while in house arrest for her courageous activism against military dictatorship and her campaign for democracy.
But once she assumed the title of State Counsellor in 2016 under a power-sharing arrangement with the military in Myanmar, calls for revoking her Prize echoed in international public discourse.
Unless the Nobel Committee consciously avoids picking incumbent politicians altogether in the future, there will always be reasons to be dejected by such Laureates’ records in hindsight.
Understanding them in their political contexts and in particular moments may help us reach a balanced final judgment.
No leverage for Biden on Iran
The murder of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh
It has also triggered a series of questions concerning the future of Iran-U.S. relations
President Donald Trump retweeted Israeli writer Yossi Melman’s tweet that said Fakhrizadeh’s assassination is a “psychological and professional blow” to Iran.
Fakhrizadeh’s assassination could easily damage and diminish any hope for future dialogues with Iran.
While the Iranian hard-liners are shouting for an immediate “harsh revenge”, President Hassan Rouhani has announced that his government will not fall for Israel’s trap by responding hastily.
The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) is the unique pre-eminent power in Iran which is capable of replacing Ayatollah Khamenei after his death and is likely to impact the future of U.S.-Iran relations.
Trump’s withdrawal from the JCPOA followed by economic coercion offer Mr. Biden no real leverage on Iran.
Iran’s adaptability to sanctions pressure shows quite well that the future Biden administration would need more than promises of sanctions relief — promises to bring the Iranian policymakers to the negotiating table.
Centre appeals to Farmers to suspend protests and Join Talks; 4th Round of talks on Thursday
Farm Legislations: Contract Agreement will guarantee the Farmers to get the Fixed price
J&K: Phase-2 of District Development Council elections conducted peacefully ; 48.62% voter turnout recorded
FPI inflows in October and November witness a significant resurgence
India reports new daily COVID-19 cases below 50 thousand mark for 24 consecutive days
India to face Australia in third ODI at Canberra today
India's cases per million population is amongst the lowest in the world
Deep Depression in Bay of Bengal : National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) meeting held
Cyclonic Storm ‘Burevi’ over southwest Bay of Bengal : Alert for Tamilnadu and Kerala
BrahMos Supersonic Cruise Missile in Anti-Ship mode successfully test fired
China’s dilly dallying approach on WHO‘s proposed visit to China to investigate the origins of Corona virus comes out in open
Protest in Dhaka demanding arrest of hardline Hefazat-e-Islam Chief for opposing Sheikh Mujib’s statue
US President-elect Joe Biden to formally introduce his top economic policy advisers today