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News in Short

News in Short - 23-May-2020

China plans new security law in Hong Kong

Date: 23 May 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • China’s Parliament will consider a Bill that could limit opposition activity in Hong Kong, a move that will allow Chinato sidestep the territory’s own lawmaking body in enacting legislation to crack down on activity Beijing considers subversive.
  • Such legislation was last proposed in 2003 under Article 23 of the Basic Law, Hong Kong’s mini-Constitution, bringing hundreds of thousands of the territory’s citizens out in protest.
  • The proposal was withdrawn by the government but Beijing has increasingly pushed for measures such as punishment for disrespecting the Chinese national flag and anthem and increased pro-China patriotic-themed education in schools.

US to pull out of Open Skies treaty

Date: 23 May 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • The United States said that it would withdraw from the 35-nation Open Skies treaty allowing unarmed surveillance flights over member countries.
  • NATO allies and other countries like Ukraine had pressed Washington not to leave the Open Skies Treaty, whose unarmed overflights are aimed at bolstering confidence and providing members forewarning of surprise military attacks.
  • The Open Skies treaty, proposed by U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower in 1955, was signed in 1992 and took effect in 2002. The idea is to let member nations make surveillance flights over each other's countries to build trust.

Constitutional functionaries cannot misuse criminal defamation

Date: 23 May 2020 Tags: Judiciary & Judgments
  • The Madras High Court held that public servants and constitutional functionaries cannot be allowed to misuse the law of criminal defamation by using the State as a tool to initiate defamation proceedings against adversaries.
  • The court quashed criminal defamation proceedings launched by the State government against a host of media houses and journalists during Jayalalithaa’s tenure as Chief Minister in 2012 and 2013.
  • The court reiterated that a state will have to show utmost restraint and maturity in filing criminal defamation cases. It said that criminal defamation procedures can be invoked only in cases where there is foolproof material and when launching of prosecution under Section 199(2) CrPC is inevitable.

SARS Cov-2 may be detected in human breast milk

Date: 23 May 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • It remains unclear whether severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) can be shed into breastmilk and transmitted to a child through breastfeeding.
  • Recent investigations have found no evidence of SARS-CoV-2 in human breastmilk, but sample sizes were small.
  • Further studies of milk samples from lactating women and possible virus transmission via breastfeeding are needed to develop recommendations on whether mothers with COVID-19 should breastfeed.

Equity firm KKR to buy 2.32% stake in Reliance Jio

Date: 23 May 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • Reliance Industries said private equity firm KKR will invest ? 11,367 crore for 2.32% stake in Jio Platforms. This is the fifth big-ticket deal announced by the oil-retail-to-telecom conglomerate in the past month.
  • This transaction values Jio Platforms at an equity value of ? 4.91 lakh crore and an enterprise value of ? 5.16 lakh crore. This is KKR’s largest investment in Asia and will translate into a 2.32% equity stake in Jio Platforms on a fully diluted basis.
  • Over the last month, leading technology investors, such as, Facebook, Silver Lake, Vista, General Atlantic and KKR have announced aggregate investments of ? 78,562 crore into Jio Platforms.