DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS ANALYSIS
05 AUGUST 2022
|Citizenship in India
|Prelims & Mains
|Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies
|Prelims & Mains
|Abortion Laws in India
|Prelims & Mains
|Line of Control
|Prelims Specific Topic
1 – Citizenship in India:
Topic – Constitutional Provisions
- What Constitutes Citizenship?
- The term “citizenship” denotes the connection between a person and their country.
- India has citizens and foreigners, much as any other contemporary state. The Indian State is their allegiance, and citizens are full members of it. They have access to every civil and political right.
- Since citizenship excludes non-citizens, it is an idea of exclusion.
- Two established rules govern the award of citizenship:
- Jus sanguinis recognises blood links, whereas “jus soli” grants citizenship based on place of birth.
- The Indian government has supported the progressive idea of jus soli since the Motilal Nehru Committee (1928).
- The Constituent Assembly also disapproved of the racial notion of jus sanguinis since it went against the character of India.
- Constitutional Rules:
- The Constitution places citizenship on the Union List, placing it solely within the purview of Parliament.
- The term “citizen” is not defined in the Constitution, although Part 2 provides information on the various types of people who are entitled to citizenship (Articles 5 to 11).
- These articles were put into effect on November 26, 1949, the day the Constitution was enacted, unlike other elements of the Constitution, which took effect on January 26, 1950.
- On the effective date of the Constitution, citizenship was provided for under Article 5.
- Everyone who was born and resides in India has been granted citizenship.
- Even people who were domiciled in India but were not born there but whose parents were both born there were regarded as citizens.
- One could petition for citizenship if they had been a regular resident for more than five years.
- Article 6: It gave those people who immigrated to India from Pakistan citizenship rights.
- Article 6 stipulated that anyone who migrated to India before July 19, 1949, automatically became an Indian citizen if either of his parents or grandparents was born in India because Independence was preceded by Partition and migration.
- However, anyone who arrived in India after this date were required to register.
- Article 7: Provides selected immigrants to Pakistan with citizenship rights.
- The citizenship net includes people who had gone to Pakistan after March 1, 1947, but later came back with resettlement permits.
- In contrast to individuals who, in a condition of bewilderment, were stranded in Pakistan or who travelled there but soon decided to return, the law was more lenient toward those who migrated from Pakistan and were referred to as refugees.
- Article 8: Provides citizenship rights to some Indians who reside outside of India.
- Any Person of Indian Origin living outside of India, or either of whose parents or grandparents were born there, may register with the Indian diplomatic mission to become a citizen.
- In accordance with Article 9, anyone who willingly acquires citizenship in a foreign country will no longer be an Indian citizen.
- According to Article 10, everyone who is or is deemed to be a citizen of India by any of the aforementioned provisions of this Part shall continue to be such a citizen, subject to the requirements of any law that may be adopted by Parliament.
- Article 11: It gives Parliament the authority to adopt any provisions regarding the acquisition and loss of citizenship, as well as any issues related to it.
- Amendments and Acts:
- Indian citizenship can be acquired and determined under the terms of the Citizenship Act, 1955.
- Gaining and Establishing Indian Citizenship:
- Indian citizenship can be obtained in four different ways: by birth, descent, registration, and naturalisation. The Citizenship Act of 1955 lists the provisions.
- By Birth: Regardless of the nationality of his or her parents, every individual born in India on or after 26.01.1950 but before 01.07.1987 is an Indian citizen.
- Every individual born in India between January 1, 1987, and December 2, 2004, is a citizen of that nation if either of his or her parents was a citizen at the time of the child’s birth.
- Every individual born in India on or after 3.12.2004 is a citizen of the nation provided that both of his or her parents are citizens of India, or that at least one parent is a citizen and the other is not an illegal immigrant at the time of the child’s birth.
- By Registration: Another way to become a citizen is to register. Among the requirements are:
- a person of Indian descent who, prior to requesting registration, had lived in India for seven years.
- a person with Indian ancestry who resides in a nation other than unbroken India.
- a person who has lived in India for at least seven years while married to an Indian citizen before registering.
- Children who are minors and who have Indian citizenship.
- By Descent: If a person’s father was an Indian citizen by birth and they were born outside of India on or after January 26, 1950, they became Indian citizens by descent.
- If either of their parents was an Indian citizen by birth, the child must have been born outside of India on or after December 10, 1992, but before December 3, 2004.
- If a person born outside of India or after December 3, 2004 wishes to become an Indian citizen, their parents must certify that the child does not possess a passport from another nation and that the birth was registered at an Indian consulate within a year of the child’s birth.
- By Naturalization: If a person meets all requirements in the third schedule of the Citizenship Act and has been a regular resident of India for 12 years (during the 12 months prior to the date of application and 11 years overall), they may become citizens by naturalisation.
- The Act does not permit dual nationality or citizenship. Only those named under the aforementioned provisions, i.e., via birth, descent, registration, or naturalisation, are permitted citizenship.
- Four times — in 1986, 2003, 2005, and 2015 — the act has been amended:
- Through these modifications, the Parliament has condensed the broader, more general notions of citizenship based on birth.
- Furthermore, the Foreigners Act makes it extremely difficult for a person to demonstrate that they are not foreigners.
- 1986 revision The 1986 change to Section 3 was less broad than the original Citizenship Act and constitutional clause, which granted citizenship on the basis of jus soli to every person born in India.
- The amendment carries the additional requirement that all people born in India on or after January 26, 1950, but before to July 1, 1987, must be citizens of India.
- In addition to being born in India, a person can only obtain citizenship if either of his parents was an Indian citizen at the time of birth if they were both born after July 1, 1987, and before December 4, 2003.
- 2003 amendment: The amendment tightened the aforementioned requirement in light of Bangladeshi infiltration.
- For those born on or after December 4, 2004, the legislation now stipulates that in addition to their own citizenship, both parents must be Indian citizens, or one parent must be an Indian citizen and the other must not be an illegal immigrant.
- With these limiting revisions, India has almost entirely adopted the constricting jus sanguinis (blood relationship) premise.
- This states that even if a person has lived in India for seven years, they cannot apply for citizenship by naturalisation or registration.
- The 2019 Citizenship (Amendment) Bill:
- If they arrived in India before December 31, 2014, members of six communities—Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis, and Christians from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan—would be allowed to stay.
- Additionally, it lowers the citizenship requirement from 11 to just 5 years.
- These migrants were also exempt from the Passport Act and the Foreigners Act according to two notices.
- Many organisations in Assam condemned this Bill because it would provide citizenship to illegal Bangladeshi Hindu immigrants.
- The argument used to support the law is that while Muslims make up the majority in Bangladesh and therefore cannot be subject to the same religious discrimination as Hindus and Buddhists, who are minorities in Bangladesh and moved to India to escape persecution.
Source – The Indian Express
2 – Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies:
Topic – Agriculture related issues
- About the Fisheries Subsidies Agreement (AFS):
- It is the first trade agreement of its kind to focus on sustainability.
- In the 27-year history of the WTO agreement, this is only the third time that it has been amended.
- In 2018, it was anticipated that there were $35.4 billion in global fisheries subsidies, of which $22.2 billion were capacity-enhancing subsidies.
- The UN General Assembly gave the WTO the mandate to produce an agreement that forbade detrimental fishing subsidies.
- AFS forbids three different types of subsidies:
- Fishing that is prohibited, unreported, or unregulated
- Using fish from already-overfished stocks
- Fishing on high seas without permission.
- Members from developing nations will have a two-year exemption for subsidies given within of their exclusive economic zones (up to 200 nautical miles from their coasts).
- No member will be able to finance high seas fishing with subsidies unless it falls under the purview of a fisheries management organisation.
- The agreement establishes a voluntary finance channel to aid poor countries and incorporates notification obligations.
- Subsidies provided or maintained by developing or least-developed nations for fishing within their exclusive economic zones would not be subject to any restrictions (EEZ).
- The Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14.6 and AFS share the goal of addressing detrimental fisheries subsidies given by nations to marine fishing and preventing further loss of global fish supplies.
- To better conserve the world’s fish stocks, it would stop “damaging” subsidies for illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing for the next four years.
- Problems / Concerns:
- Critics said that this agreement would only limit subsidies for illegal fishing, not eliminate them.
- After 20 years of delays, the W.T.O. once more failed to end funded overfishing, leaving nations to plunder the oceans.
- The finalised agreement lacks the necessary restraint on subsidies for fishing in the waters of other members and those that support overfishing and overcapacity (OCOF).
- India’s Needs:
- India has insisted adamantly that developing nations be granted a longer transition period of 25 years before they are required to stop providing OCOF subsidies inside their EEZ.
- India’s position is motivated by its own national interests.
- India’s development trajectory prioritises the blue economy, or the sustainable utilisation of ocean resources for economic prosperity, given its almost 7,500 km long coastline.
- By 2025, India wants to export marine items worth $14 billion.
- To fully utilise the potential of the blue economy, India needs the governmental flexibility to invest in the construction of marine infrastructure.
- Nearly four million marine farmers in India need their livelihoods protected because they primarily engage in small-scale, artisanal fishing, which does not significantly threaten sustainability.
- Many nations, who urged that this term be seven years, rejected India’s request for a lengthier transition period.
Source – The Hindu
3 – Abortion Laws in India:
Topic – Government Policies and Interventions
- India’s abortion laws date back to:
- Following a spike in the incidence of induced abortions in the 1960s, the Union government mandated the formation of the Shantilal Shah Committee to consider the country’s abortion legalisation.
- The Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act was put into effect in 1971 with the goal of lowering maternal mortality caused by unsafe abortions.
- This law establishes the guidelines for how and when a medical abortion may be performed. It is an exemption to the Indian Penal Code (IPC) provisions of 312 and 313.
- A person who “voluntarily induces a woman with child to miscarry” is subject to punishment under Section 312 of the IPC, which carries a maximum three-year prison sentence, a fine, or both, unless it was done in good faith with the intention to preserve the pregnant woman’s life.
- In India, this clause effectively outlaws all forms of abortion.
- According to Section 313 of the IPC, a person who induces a miscarriage without the pregnant woman’s agreement, regardless of whether she is far along in her pregnancy, will be subject to a fine, life in prison, or a prison sentence that could last up to 10 years.
- MTP development between 1971 and 2021:
- The MTP Act underwent its most recent modification in 2021.
- Prior to that, new regulations were introduced in 2003 to permit the use of misoprostol, an abortion drug that had just been discovered, to end a pregnancy up to seven weeks into it.
- Abortion is legal following a doctor’s recommendation under certain conditions, according to the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Act of 2021.
- The 2021 Act expanded the maximum gestational period to which a woman may obtain a medical abortion from the 20 weeks allowed by the 1971 Act to 24 weeks.
- This updated upper limit is only applicable in certain circumstances.
- Up to 20 weeks of gestation, MTP might now be accessible based on the recommendation of a single licenced medical professional.
- Two licenced medical professionals’ opinions are needed between 20 and 24 weeks.
- A medical abortion up to 12 weeks of pregnancy required the approval of one registered doctor under the previous version of the Act, while abortions up to 20 weeks required the approval of two doctors.
- Additionally, if a pregnancy must be terminated beyond 24 weeks of gestation, only a four-member Medical Board, established in each State under the Act, may do so on the basis of foetal abnormalities.
- Despite any of the aforementioned restrictions, the legislation also stipulates that an abortion may be performed whenever necessary by a single licenced medical professional in order to preserve the pregnant woman’s life.
- Because the 2021 Act does not include the need for spousal consent, unmarried women may also seek abortion under the aforementioned conditions. However, a guardian’s approval is necessary if the woman is a minor.
- Judicial interventions taken in incidents involving abortions:
- The decision by a pregnant person to continue a pregnancy or not is part of that person’s right to privacy as well as their right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 of the Constitution, the Supreme Court held in the landmark Right to Privacy judgement in the 2017 case Justice K.S. Puttaswamy v. Union of India and others. Despite the fact that the country’s current laws do not permit unconditional abortions,
- In February 2022, the Calcutta High Court granted a 37-year-old woman’s request for a medical abortion at 34 weeks of pregnancy because the foetus had been identified as having an intractable spinal disorder.
- After the State Medical Board denied the woman’s request for MTP, the Court approved this.
- This decision authorised abortion up to the current point in the pregnancy in the nation.
- Arguments against the abortion law include:
- A 2018 report published in the Lancet estimates that as of 2015, India saw 15.6 million abortions annually.
- The latest National Family Health Survey 2019–2021 found that 27% of abortions were performed at home by the mother herself.
- Around 8 women perish every day in India as a result of unsafe abortions, according to the State of the World Population Report 2022 by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
- According to the MTP Act, only gynaecologists or obstetricians are permitted to perform abortions.
- However, the 2019–20 Rural Health Statistics report from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare shows that there is a 70% lack of obstetrician–gynecologists in rural India.
- Critics claim that because the law prohibits abortions performed at any time, it forces women to acquire unsafe, illegal abortions.
- According to statistics, 8,00,000 unsafe and illegal abortions are carried out annually in India, many of which result in maternal death.
- As “woman” is used in the legislation, pregnant transgender and non-binary people who are biologically able to have children are excluded.
- They are compelled to ignore their gender identification and identify as one of the gender-binary.
- Affordability and social stigma that encourage unsafe abortions are other major problems.
- Private medical facilities with abortion services are pricy and only accessible to those with sufficient funds.
- India’s condition is far from ideal, so now is the time to consider global progressive practises and learn from them.
- We should work toward reproductive equity, total physical autonomy, and inclusivity.
- We shouldn’t start governing by gauging our progress by the rate of regression.
- Legal, medical, and societal considerations must be taken into account while evaluating bodily autonomy and reproductive rights.
- One cannot say that India is paving the way for the West until women and non-binary pregnant people have complete authority over their own bodies according to these standards.
Source – The Indian Express
4 – Line of Control
Prelims Specific Topic
- Details of the LoC:
- Following the Simla Agreement, which was signed on July 3, 1972, the “Line of Control,” formerly known as the “Cease-fire Line,” was given a new name.
- The state of Jammu and Kashmir is the name of the region of Jammu that is governed by India. Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu & Kashmir are separated under Pakistani authority. NJ9842 is the designation for the Line of Control’s northernmost point.
- Jammu and Kashmir, a state under Indian administration, and Aksai Chin, a region under Chinese rule, are divided by yet another ceasefire line.
- Kashmir was split in two by the Line of Control, which also blocked access to the Jehlum valley.
- Trade along the LoC:
- The purpose of LoC trade in Jammu & Kashmir is to make it easier for local communities to interchange commodities that are used often.
- Two Trade Facilitation Centers, one each at Salamabad, Uri, District Baramulla and Chakkan-da-Bagh, District Poonch, permit trade.
- Four days a week are designated for the trade.
- The trade is conducted on a barter system with no duties.
Source – The Hindu