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Insights Daily Current Events, 02 December 2014

Insights Daily Current Events, 02 December 2014

Hornbill festival

It is the biggest indigenous festival and the annual tourism promotional event of the Nagaland government. It is organized by the Government of Nagaland. It is celebrated every year in the first week of December.

Why?

  • To encourage inter-tribal interaction and to promote cultural heritage of Nagaland.

More details:

  • The Festival is named after the hornbill, the globally respected bird and which is displayed in folklore in most of the state’s tribes.
  • The program unites all the people of Nagaland and showcases different traditional arts which include paintings, sculptures and wood carvings.
  • It is the coming together of all the elements that make up the total Nagaland. The Hornbill festival is a collaborative celebration of all Naga tribes at one venue and has been coined as “Festival of Festivals”.
  • The Festival is a tribute to the great “Hornbill” which is the most admired and revered bird for the Nagas, for its qualities of alertness and grandeur. The Majestic bird is closely identified with the social and cultural life of the Nagas, as reflected in various tribal folklores, dances and songs. The awe and admiration for the bird is symbolically displayed on almost all tribal traditional headgears worn during the festival and is indicative of the commonness of the Nagas.
  • The Hornbill Festival of Nagaland is a cultural extravaganza to revive, protect and preserve the richness and uniqueness of the Naga heritage, while for the visitors to this event, it is a means for comprehensive understanding of the Naga People, their land and culture.
  • Since 2007, International cultural troupes have been taking part in it and it is slowly turning out to be an international event.

 

Sources: PIB, Wiki, hornbillfestival.com.

Universal Account Number

The Universal Account Number (UAN) has been designed to be an umbrella number of a member for all his employment with different establishments in organized sector.

Why was it introduced?

  • To provide one number to the Employees’ Provident Fund member for all his employments with different employers.

How will this help?

  • Earlier, whenever Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) member changed his job, he had to transfer his Provident Fund accumulations to his new Provident Fund number. With the introduction of UAN number, now, member has to give his UAN number to his present employer for linking his previous Provident Fund accounts with his present Provident Fund membership.

This would benefit the members initially in the following ways:

  • The member can get this updated Provident Fund balance through Universal Account Number (UAN) based member portal.
  • The system would enable portability of Provident Fund accumulations when the details of bank account, Aadhar and PAN seeded in UAN database of member are verified by employer on change of job.
  • The member would get message on his mobile number about the receipt of his PF contribution if he has registered his mobile number on Universal Account Number (UAN) based member portal.

Sources: PIB.

Bill sought to ratify boundary pact

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on External Affairs has tabled its report, recommending a Constitution amendment Bill to enable the swapping of enclaves and end a 67-year-old dispute between the two countries.

Why the swapping is being done?

  • Land swapping will be done for a permanent solution to the problem of infiltration.

About the land swap deal:

  • The swap will involve handing over 17,000 acres of land to Bangladesh in return for 7,000 acres in 111 enclaves in West Bengal, Assam, Tripura and Meghalaya, and was first decided under the 1974 Land Boundary Agreement (LBA) between India and Bangladesh, but never ratified by Parliament.
  • It will require an amendment to the Constitution (the 119th amendment) ratified by both Houses of Parliament with a two-thirds majority.
  • The deal relates to demarcation of boundary under the Land Boundary Agreement between the two countries. India and Bangladesh have been negotiating the land swap for years to resolve a long-running border conflict.

How will affect the existing citizens:

  • The number of people to be involved in the whole swap is approximately 52,000, of which about 15,000 are on the Indian side of the border.
  • Under this intended agreement, the enclave residents could continue to reside at their present location or move to the country of their choice.
  • A number of Indian nationals living in Indian enclaves in Bangladesh territory are going to be adversely affected as they would lose their claim to Indian citizenship.

Now, it becomes the responsibilities of the governments of India and Bangladesh to ensure that there is no “discrimination” against them.

Opposition:

  • Some people have been opposing the deal on the ground that Assam will stand to lose more territory as compared to Bangladesh in the exchange of enclaves.

Sources: The Hindu.

TS plea on Krishna water disputes

The Supreme Court, recently, observed that it cannot “close its doors” on newly-formed Telangana’s plea for a fresh look at the inter-State sharing of Krishna river water, even as Karnataka, one of the beneficiary States, strongly objected to the re-opening of the five-decade-old dispute.

What is the issue now?

  • Telangana has filed a fresh petition in the Supreme Court, contending that its interests were not represented before the Krishna Water Disputes Tribunal – II.
  • It sought total re-consideration of the Tribunal’s final award in December 2010 as it concerned only Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra.
  • Telangana petition says that it faced the grim prospect of hardly any water reaching its borders from any one of the three arms of the river, namely Bhima, Tungabhadra or the main Krishna.
  • It is said that Telangana, which came into existence only on June 2 this year, did not get an opportunity to raise its “independent grievances”.

In August this year, the Supreme Court had prima facie recognised Telangana’s status as an “affected” State with a voice of its own.


 

Opposition to Telangana’s Plea:

  • It is being said that “Telangana was never heard before the Krishna Tribunals” was factually wrong. The territories, which later became Telangana after bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, were earlier represented by the undivided State. Hence it is being said that the award of the Tribunal, binding on the erstwhile State, is now binding on the successor State.
  • The Inter-State Water Disputes Act of 1956 says the award of the Tribunal is final. Now, re-opening the Tribunal award would require statutory amendment.
  • It is also being said that the Andhra Pradesh Re-organisation Act already provided for the bifurcation and has extended the tenure of the Krishna Water Tribunal – II to look into the problems of Telangana. So, when the tribunal is already considering the issue there was no need for Telangana to come before the court.

As per the final award passed on December 2010, Andhra Pradesh is entitled to get 1,001 tmcft of water, Karnataka will get 907 tmcft and Maharashtra’s share is 666 tmcft. This award is binding till 2050.

About Krishna river water dispute:

  • The dispute is between the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh over sharing of Krishna river water.
  • Central government had set up a tribunal in 1969 under the state water disputes act 1956 to resolve the dispute. The tribunal was headed by Justice R.S. Bachawat.
  • The tribunal gave its award in 1973. While the Tribunal had in its earlier report detailed two schemes, Scheme A and Scheme B, the final award only included Scheme A and Scheme B was left out. Scheme A pertained to the division of the available waters based on 75% dependability, while Scheme B recommended ways to share the surplus waters.
  • The KWDT in its award outlined the exact share of each state. The award contended based on 75% dependability that the total quantum of water available for distribution was 2060TMC. This was divided between the three states in the following manner.
    Maharashtra 560 TMC
    Karnataka 700 TMC
    Andhra Pradesh 800 TMC

Review of the Award:

  • The KWDT-1 provided for a review of its award after 31 May 2000. However no such review was taken up for more than 3 years after that.
  • In April 2004, the second KWDT, was constituted by the Government of India following requests by all three states.
  • The second Krishna Water Dispute Tribunal gave its draft verdict on 31 December 2010. The allocation of available water was done according to 65% dependability, considering the records of flow of water for past 47 years. According to KWDT II, Andhra Pradesh got 1001 TMC of water, Karnataka 907 TMC and Maharashtra 666 TMC. Next review of water allocations will be after the year 2050.

     

The Krishna River is the second biggest river in peninsular India. It originates near Mahabaleshwar in Maharashtra from the statue of a cow in a temple. It then runs for a distance of 303 km in Maharashtra, 480 km through the breadth of North Karnataka and the rest of its 1300 km journey in Andhra Pradesh before it empties into the Bay of Bengal.

The river basin is 257,000 km², and the States of Maharastra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh contributes 68,800 km² (26.8%), 112,600 sq.k.m. (43.8%) and 75,600 km² (29.4%) respectively.

Sources: The Hindu, Wiki.