Daily Current Affairs 29th March 2018

Daily Current Affairs 29th March 2018

CREAMY LAYER FOR OBC’s NOT SC/ST :-

Issue :-

Supreme Court entertained a public interest litigation on Wednesday and asked the Centre a question Should creamy layer exclusion criteria be applied in the grant of 22.5% reservation in government jobs to Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes?”

Response :-

ASG Narasimha who represented the govt said creamy layer was applicable to the reservation for OBCs, which was brought through a law. “This cannot apply to the reservation (for SCs and STs) made through Presidential Order under Article 341 of the Constitution,” he said.

A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justice A M Khanwilkar asked the Centre, represented by additional solicitor general P S Narasimha, to file its response within four weeks and posted the matter for final hearing in the second week of July.

Supreme Court Judgements :-

SC recent judgement on SC/ST Act :-

Its recent judegment that barred police from arresting a person accused of committing an offence under the SC and ST (Prevention of) Atrocities Act.

Earlier, any offence under the Act was nonbailable, meaning thereby that police had no option but to arrest a person accused of insulting a Dalit or tribal. This judgement seeks to gather alot of attention because of continuous protest by opposition parties for reviewing this judgement.

Indra Sawhney judgment :-

  • The SC in November 1992, in the Indra Sawhney judgment, had upheld the Centre’s decision to accept Mandal Commission recommendations and grant 27% quota in jobs to Other Backward Classes (OBCs), but stipulated exclusion of creamy layer to weed out the rich among OBCs from cornering the quota.

M Nagaraj Case :-

  • In 2006, a Constitution bench of the SC in M Nagaraj case had said that the amendment inserting sub-clause 4A into Article 16 to enable the government make provisions for reservation in promotions based on ground reality must be dependent on ‘backwardness’ of the section of population, their inadequacy in representation in service and thirdly, that such reservation did not impede the ‘overall efficiency’ of governance.

Samata Andolan Samiti PIL :-

  • Making M Nagraj judgment as the base, a PIL filed by Samata Andolan Samiti pleaded that nonexclusion of creamy layer from SCs/STs has defeated the purpose behind the social welfare measure as a select few families have for generations cornered the quota, meaning that “almost the entire community remains deprived”.
  • One of the primary measures to check this is to exclude the ‘creamy layer’ — the judicially crafted remedy in Indira Sawhney case which aimed to ensure that only the truly backwards in all communities would avail the benefit of reservation,” the petitioner NGO said.

NMC Bill :- Cabinet Removes exit test, Bridge Course :-

The Cabinet on Wednesday removed two most revolutionary provisions of the National Medical Commission Bill 2018  —

  • The exit test to determine the quality of MBBS pass outs
  • Bridge course to enable Ayush practitioners to dispense modern medicine.

New amendments are also in line with the recommendations of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Health which submitted its report on the Bill a few days ago. The amendments were approved on the eve of national-level strike called by IMA on April 2 against the NMC Bill provisions.

The amended Bill says :-

  • The final year MBBS exam will be treated as an exit test now instead of the previously contemplated mandatory test for MBBS pass outs to get practicing licence.
    “Having considered the common demand by students not to subject them to an additional licentiate exam for the purpose of getting license to practice, the Cabinet has approved that the final MBBS examination would be held as a common exam throughout the country and would serve as an exit test called the National Exit Test (NEXT).”
    NEXT would also serve as the screening test for doctors with foreign medical qualifications in order to practice in India, the amendment said.
  • The Cabinet further dropped from the Bill the bridge course for AYUSH practitioners to practice modern medicine.
    “The provision dealing with bridge course for AYUSH practitioners to practice modern medicine to a limited extent has been removed. It has been left to states to take measures for addressing and promoting primary health care in rural areas,” the Cabinet statement said.
  • In a third change, the government increased the percentage of seats on which fee will be regulated in private medical institutions and deemed universities from 40 to 50.
    “The maximum limit of 40 per cent seats for which fee would be regulated in private medical institutions and deemed universities has been increased to 50 per cent seats. This fee will include all other charges taken by the colleges,” the Ministry said.
  • In another move, the Cabinet introduced jail term for unqualified practitioners or fraudsters in the NMC Bill, saying
    “quackery (fraud) could lead to imprisonment up to one year along with fine extending up to Rs 5 lakh.”

Courts can’t stay civil, criminal case trials – SC :-

The Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that stay orders on the proceedings in any pending trial — civil or criminal cases — would automatically lapse after six months, unless extended by a speaking order that explain the need for the stay order.

If there is no such speaking order, the trial courts may, on expiry of the six months resume the proceedings without further wait, the court said.

SC guidelines :-

  • Laying down the contours of the “speaking order.” The speaking order must show that the case was of such exceptional nature that continuing the stay was more important than having the trial finalised.
  • The trial court where order of stay of civil or criminal proceedings is produced, may fix a date not beyond six months of the order of stay, so that on expiry of the period of the stay, proceedings can commence unless order of extension of stay is produced.

Statistics :- 

  • Average pendency per case (counted from the date of stay order till 26-7-2010) works out to be around 7.4 years.
  • Charge sheet was found to be the most prominent stage where the cases were stayed with almost 32 per cent of the cases falling under this category.
  • The next two prominent stages are found to be ‘appearance’ and ‘summons’, with each comprising 19% of the total number of cases,” the bench said.

The top court said though high courts could entertain review petitions, it should do so “consistent with the legislative policy to ensure expeditious disposal of a trial without the same being in any manner hampered” and in “rarest of rare case only to correct a patent error of jurisdiction and not to re-appreciate the matter.”

Where the high court entertains challenge to an order framing charge, “decision of such a petition should not be delayed,” the apex court said. It said that though no mandatory time limit could be fixed, “normally it should not exceed two-three months.”


India-France signed the Secrecy Pact :-

An agreement between India and France regarding the Exchange and Reciprocal Protection of Classified or Protected Information was signed on March 10, 2018, during the visit of President of France to India. An agreement on protecting classified data was signed by India and France on March 10, 2018, replacing an earlier agreement signed in 2008, minister of state for defence Subhash Bhamre said on Wednesday.

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