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2nd June Current Affairs

Monsoon onset over Kerala delayed

In News:

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has said that the arrival of the southwest monsoon over Kerala has been delayed to June 3.

Details:

However, Skymet, a private weather forecast agency, said the monsoon had arrived. This was because two of the three criteria — as defined by the IMD — had been met.

The criteria are:

Rain-bearing westerlies being at a minimum depth and speed.

At least 60% of the available 14 stations in Kerala and coastal Karnataka reported rainfall of 2.5 mm or more for two consecutive days after May 10.

A certain degree of clouding, indicated by a parameter called ‘outgoing longwave radiation’ (OLR), being below 200 W/square metre.

Currently, IMD’s own data indicated that except for the OLR, the other criteria were met. Thus, there is an element of subjectivity in arrival.

Factors influencing the onset on Southwest Monsoon:

The onset of Southwest Monsoon is an emotional event as it may cause anxiety if delayed or shoot excitement for stepping in early.

Various factors influencing it’s onset:

The onset needs a trigger in the form of a weather system in the proximity of the coastline. These are ocean born phenomena which accentuate the monsoon surge around the normal time of onset. These include:

The low-pressure area or depression in the Bay of Bengal during the last days of May or the beginning of June.

There are such systems in the Arabian Sea as well around the same time which results in onset over the mainland.

‘Cyclonic Vortex’ is another factor which appears in the Southeast Arabian Sea, off Kerala and Lakshadweep region. They also shift along the west coast to push the monsoon current.

The formation of ‘trough’ off the west coast due to temperature differential between land and sea. This situation could be for a mild start and weak progress.

Lastly the cross-equatorial flow, wherein the trade winds from the Southern Hemisphere crossover to the Northern Hemisphere can bring a strong monsoon surge towards the Indian mainland.

Monsoon in India- related key facts:

Generally, across the world, the monsoons are experienced in the tropical area roughly between 20° N and 20° S.

Out of a total of 4 seasonal divisions of India, monsoon occupies 2 divisions, namely- the southwest monsoon season and the retreating monsoon season.

PM CARES For Children- Empowerment of COVID Affected Children

In News:

The scheme has been launched for support & empowerment of Covid affected children.

Eligibility: All children who have lost both parents or surviving parent or legal guardian/adoptive parents due to Covid 19 will be supported under the scheme.

Features of the scheme:

Fixed Deposit in the name of the child: A corpus of Rs 10 lakh for each child when he or she reaches 18 years of age.

School Education: For children under 10 years: Admission will be given in the nearest Kendriya Vidyalaya or in a private school as a day scholar.

School Education: for children between 11-18 years: The child will be given admission in any Central Government residential school such as Sainik School, Navodaya Vidyalaya etc.

Support for Higher Education: The child will be assisted in obtaining an education loan for Professional courses / Higher Education in India as per the existing Education Loan norms.

Health Insurance: All children will be enrolled as a beneficiary under Ayushman Bharat Scheme (PM-JAY) with a health insurance cover of Rs 5 lakhs.

Need for these measures:

As India battles a raging second wave, cases of children losing their parents to Covid-19 are also mounting.

Also the apprehension of child trafficking in the garb of adoption has increased.

Child Marriages have also increased in the Covid-19 induced lockdown.

The concept of anticipatory bail

In News:

The Supreme Court has resolved a dichotomy in approach of high courts and ruled that Courts in “extraordinary circumstances” have the discretion to grant protection from arrest to accused even while denying them anticipatory bail, but the power cannot be exercised in an untrammelled manner, and the order will have to be a reasoned one.

Background:

The court was hearing appeals against two High Court orders which, while rejecting the prayer of the accused for anticipatory bail, had asked them to surrender before the trial court and file a regular bail application within 90 days, and protected them from any coercive action during this period.

What has the Supreme Court ruled?

HCs and SC are given powers to grant anticipatory bail to the accused because of the premium that the Constitution places on the right to liberty guaranteed under Article 21.

The grant or rejection of an application under CrPC has a direct bearing on the right to life and liberty of an individual. Therefore, the provision needs to be read liberally, and considering its beneficial nature. The courts must not read in restrictions that the legislature has not explicitly provided for.

In doing so, the court may also exercise its powers under Article 142 of the Constitution to pass such an order.

Need for such protection:

An accused, besides being an accused, may also be the primary caregiver or sole breadwinner of the family. His arrest may leave his loved ones in a state of starvation and neglect.

In the 1980 Gurbaksh Singh Sibbia vs State of Punjab case, a five-judge Supreme Court bench led by then Chief Justice Y V Chandrachud ruled that 438 (1) is to be interpreted in the light of Article 21 of the Constitution (protection of life and personal liberty).

The concept of anticipatory bail:

The provision of anticipatory bail under Section 438 was introduced when CrPC was amended in 1973.

As opposed to ordinary bail, which is granted to a person who is under arrest, in anticipatory bail, a person is directed to be released on bail even before arrest is made.

Time limit: The Supreme Court (SC) in Sushila Aggarwal v. State of NCT of Delhi (2020) case delivered a significant verdict, ruling that no time limit can be set while granting anticipatory Bail and it can continue even until the end of the trial.

It is issued only by the Sessions Court and High Court.

Significance:

The reason for enactment of Section 438 in the Code was parliamentary acceptance of the crucial underpinning of personal liberty in a free and democratic country.

Parliament wished to foster respect for personal liberty and accord primacy to a fundamental tenet of criminal jurisprudence, that everyone is presumed to be innocent till he or she is found guilty.

D-voter, or doubtful voter

In News:

Manindra Das- the last “foreigner” has walked out of one of the six detention centres in Assam, leaving about 170 more to be released from the other five.

Details:

Mahindra Das was tagged a ‘D-voter’ in 2015 and later declared a “foreigner” in a one-sided decision by a Foreigners’ Tribunal in 2019.

Who is a D-voter, or doubtful voter?

Those persons whose citizenship was doubtful or was under dispute were categorized as ‘D- Voters’ during the preparation of National Register of Citizens in Assam.

They have not been defined in the Citizenship Act, 1955 or the Citizenship Rules of 2003.

Who is a declared foreigner?

A declared foreigner, or DF, is a person marked by Foreigners’ Tribunal (FT) for allegedly failing to prove their citizenship after the State police’s Border wing marks him or her as an illegal immigrant.

What is a Foreigners tribunal?

The Foreigner tribunals are set up under the Foreigners (Tribunals) Order, 1964.

The tribunals are quasi-judicial bodies, to determine if a person staying illegally is a “foreigner” or not.

Composition: Advocates not below the age of 35 years of age with at least 7 years of practice (or) Retired Judicial Officers from the Assam Judicial Service (or) Retired IAS of ACS Officers (not below the rank of Secretary/Addl. Secretary) having experience in quasi-judicial works.

Who can set up these tribunals?

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has amended the Foreigners (Tribunals) Order, 1964, and has empowered district magistrates in all States and Union Territories to set up tribunals (quasi-judicial bodies) to decide whether a person staying illegally in India is a foreigner or not.

Earlier, the powers to constitute tribunals were vested only with the Centre.

Who can approach these tribunals?

The amended order (Foreigners (Tribunal) Order, 2019) also empowers individuals to approach the Tribunals.

Earlier, only the State administration could move the Tribunal against a suspect.