News Feed 05-Aug ‘2016

SC to hear Delhi govt’s suit for Statehood

  • The Supreme Court will be hearing Arvind Kejriwal government in a separate suit seeking a judicial affirmation of the boundaries of the constitutional relationship amid it and the Centre in administering the National Capital.
  • A Division Bench led by Chief Justice of Delhi High Court G. Rohini cleared the air that Delhi is a Union Territory with the Lieutenant Governor as its administrator and not a State.
  • The High Court trimmed the Kejriwal Cabinet’s girth by quashing a number of notifications issued by it without consulting Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung. The court did all this by dismissing Delhi government’s argument that the AAP-Centre tussle was a ‘classic’ federal clash.
  • The 194-judgment relegated the dispute to the status of a mere political tug-of-war on ‘services’ matters over which the High Court has full jurisdiction to judge under Article 226 of the Constitution. It observednot every dispute between the Centre and a State government could be classified as a ‘federal dispute’.
  • This original suit was filed in the midst of the ongoing lawsuit before the Delhi High Court. It includes identical pleas raised by the AAP government in the High Court – that the dispute between AAP-Centre is a federal disagreement over the interpretation of Article 239AA (a special provision for the administration of Delhi and separation of legislative and executive powers between the Centre and the State) in the Constitution.
  • In its suit, the AAP government contends that the Centre is encroaching into its administrative domain and the Supreme Court should now clearly define the powers of the Lieutenant Governor, who represents the Centre, so that none steps on the other’s toes.
  • It has highlighted issues like how the Delhi Police is run by the Centre unlike in other States.
  • Disputes have arisen over the last year on the question whether Delhi Government can act in relation to the other matters in List II (State List) without prior approval of the Administrator, which is the Lieutenant Governor. These notifications were subject matter of the High Court litigation and quashed.


Pak blacks out Rajnath speech attacking terrorists

  • Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s speech during the seventhSAARC Home Ministers meeting held in Islamabad was blacked out.
  • Indian media from New Delhi who had come to report on the conference were not allowed to cover the speech. They were kept at a distance by Pakistani officials, which led to a verbal dual between officials of the two sides.
  • OnlyPakistan state’s PTV was allowed to cover the introductory speeches of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan. Reportedly, even the private Pakistani media not allowed to cover the event.
  • During his speech, Singh launched a indirect attack on Pakistan, saying mere criticism ofterrorism and individual acts by terrorists was not enough as far as New Delhi was concerned. He said that as far as the Indian government was concerned, there could be no difference made between a “good terrorist” and a “bad terrorist”.
  • Singh said there should be the strongest of action not only against terrorists but also against organizations, individuals and nations who support terror.
  • The ongoing strain in Indo-Pak relations was evident when Singh came face- to-face with Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan for the first time. The two leaders barely shook hands at the doorway of the venue of the conference at the posh Serena Hotel.
  • Singh arrived in Islamabad in the middle of protests by supporters of the Hizbul Mujahideen and the Harkat ul Mujahideen. The protests were held at a distance of about 10 kilometers from the National Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin was also present during the protests.


Educational institution ranks to be open to public scrutiny

  • According to a recent development by the HRD ministry, the general public will now have a say in the government rankings awarded to educational institutions this year in an effort to guarantee greater transparency and check inaccurate data furnished by universities and colleges.
  • The human resource development ministry will ask all participating institutions to publish important data, including number of teachers, infrastructure and students between others, on their website.
  • The general public and other stakeholders will then be asked to inspect the data and propose their feedback to the National Accreditation Bureau under the HRD ministry in case of any disagreement.
  • Last year, a number of institutions had withheld information or provided incorrect data about the number of faculty and infrastructure to safe a good ranking, sources said. The ministry doesn’t carry out physical checks of its own.
  • For 2017, colleges across the country will also be ranked and the government will award an ordinary overall rank to the institution irrespective of specialization or branch.
  • More than 3,500 top higher educational institutions are under consideration for the ranking.
  • Explaining the process, a senior official said all candidate institutions, independent of their discipline or nature (university, engineering institution, law or medical institution) will be given a common overall rank. The parameters have been chosen in such a manner that they stay equally important for all kinds of educational institutions.
  • The criteria for ranking include teaching/learning resources, research, graduation outcomes, outreach/inclusivity and perception. The data for the first four parameters, which account for 90% of the weightage, was submitted by the institutions and established by the National Institutional Ranking Framework.


Municipal bodies to screen Rio Olympics events at 10 locations

  • The municipal corporations of Delhi have decided to screen live all events of the Rio Olympics at 10 locations. The Games will be held in Rio de Janeiro from August 5 to August 21.
  • The live screening of Olympic events, the corporations believe, will help encourage and expand an interest in sporting activities among residents.
  • The municipal corporations have identified sites that spectator heavy footfall such as Janakpuri, Hauz Khas, Delhi University (north campus), Gaffar Market, Town Hall and CVD ground and installed giant screens and projectors.
  • The corporation will hold diverse activities to encourage and support the Indian athletes.
  • The corporations, officials said, approached Delhi Police for help to ensure the safety of sports enthusiasts and handle issues related to traffic movement.
  • PK Gupta, commissioner of North Delhi Municipal Corporation announced that the priority will be to stream live all games in which Indian athletes are participating. To help increase knowledge of sports, we are planning to install kiosks and information booths about the games.
  • India has sent 118 athletes to the Games this year.
  • “India has fielded its biggest contingent of athletes this year. Going by their performance, we hope that they will do India proud,” said Shailender Singh, standing committee chairman of South Delhi Municipal Corporation.
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