Insights Daily Current Events, 10 january 2015
Pravasi Bhartiya Samman Awards -2015
The Vice President of India Shri M. Hamid Ansari presented the “Pravasi Bhartiya Samman Awards -2015” to 15 distinguished persons at the Valedictory Session of the ‘Pravasi Bhartiya Divas’.
Pravasi Bhartiya Samman Award:
The Pravasi Bharatiya Samman (Overseas Indian Award) is an award constituted by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs, Government of India in conjunction with the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (Non-resident Indian Day).
- to honor exceptional and meritorious contribution in their chosen field/profession. The award is given by the President of India.
India Water Week
The Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Government of India will be observing India Water Week from 13 to 17th of January.
- To raise awareness, conserve and use water resources in an integrated manner.
- To use it as a platform to elicit ideas and opinions from global level decision makers, politicians, researchers and entrepreneurs in the field of water resources for mutual benefit and goodwill.
- It will address the issues of sustainability of water resources development and management in line with Sustainable Development Goals 2015 being finalized by UN.
Theme: The theme for water week will be “Water Management for Sustainable Development“.
- Australia will be the partner country for this event and 30 Australian companies will be participating in the exhibition to showcase the technological advancement in the area of water resources. Maharashtra will be associated as partner State.
- The event is targeted at international and national audience comprising of policy planners and technologists involved with water resources management in all key sectors of economy like agriculture, irrigation, energy, industry and drinking water supply.
- The event is being organized in co-ordination with nodal Ministries of Agriculture, Environment & Forests and Climate Change, Rural Development, Urban Development, Drinking Water and Sanitation, Power and NITI Ayog along with their associated expert organizations and Public Sector Units, key international bodies and private and public business houses.
- During the week Hamara Jal – Hamara Jeewan initiative will be observed in every district of the country. This will be an initiative to engage scientists, engineers, water communities, PRIs, other stakeholders and NGOs to address the issues of water resources planning at the local level and to generate awareness regarding need for water conservation.
- Participation from school students will be an integral part of the programme for sensitizing the next generation for water conservation. This will also spread awareness regarding need to conserve water in the light of growing water scarcity.
- Conceptualised and organised for the first time in 2012, the India Water Week is an annual forum where the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Government of India discusses, talks, strategizes with eminent stakeholders through seminars, exhibitions and sessions to build public awareness to get support to implement key strategies for conservation, preservation and optimum use of available water.
- This is the third event in line with the theme “Water management for sustainable development”. The second event namely India Water Week-2013 with the theme “Efficient Water Management: Challenges and Opportunities” was organised during 8-12 April, 2013.
Consumer forum fines bank for destroying title deeds
The North East District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has directed ICICI Bank and Arcil Arms to pay a compensation of Rs 8.50 lakhs to a couple for defacing their original title deeds in lieu of which they had taken a loan.
CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT:
The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 is a benevolent social legislation that lays down the rights of the consumers and provides for promotion and protection of the rights of the consumers.
- It has enabled ordinary consumers to secure less expensive and often speedy redressal of their grievances.
- The Act mandates establishment of Consumer Protection Councils at the Centre as well as in each State and District, with a view to promoting consumer awareness.
- The Central Council is headed by Minster, In-charge of the Department of Consumer Affairs in the Central Government and the State Councils by the Minister In-charge of the Consumer Affairs in the State Governments. It also provides for a 3-tier structure of the National and State Commissions and District Forums for speedy resolution of consumer disputes.
To provide inexpensive, speedy and summary redressal of consumer disputes, quasi-judicial bodies have been set up in each District and State and at the National level, called the District Forums, the State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commissions and the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission respectively.
- Each District Forum is headed by a person who is or has been or is eligible to be appointed as a District Judge and each State Commission is headed by a person who is or has been a Judge of High Court.
- At present, there are 629 District Forums and 35 State Commissions with the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) at the apex.
The provisions of this Act cover ‘goods’ as well as ‘services’. The goods are those which are manufactured or produced and sold to consumers through wholesalers and retailers. The services are in the nature of transport, telephone, electricity, housing, banking, insurance, medical treatment, etc.
- A written complaint, can be filed before the District Consumer Forum for pecuniary value of upto Rupees twenty lakh, State Commission for value upto Rupees one crore and the National Commission for value above Rupees one crore, in respect of defects in goods and or deficiency in service. However, no complaint can be filed for alleged deficiency in any service that is rendered free of charge or under a contract of personal service.
- The remedy under the Consumer Protection Act is an alternative in addition to that already available to the aggrieved persons/consumers by way of civil suit. In the complaint/appeal/petition submitted under the Act, a consumer is not required to pay any court fees but only a nominal fee.
- If a consumer is not satisfied by the decision of a District Forum, he can appeal to the State Commission. Against the order of the State Commission a consumer can come to the National Commission.
In order to help achieve the objects of the Consumer Protection Act, the National Commission has also been conferred with the powers of administrative control over all the State Commissions by calling for periodical returns regarding the institution, disposal and pendency of cases.
Sources: The Hindu, http://ncdrc.nic.in/.
‘TS Wakf Board likely in a month’
With the assurance coming from the Dy. CM, Telangana Wakf Board is expected become reality in a month.
- The State Wakf Boards are statutory bodies established by the State Governments in view of the provisions of the Wakf Act, 1995.
- The Board is made up of nominated and elected members from various categories and the Chairman is elected by the members.
- These work towards management, regulation and protect the Wakf properties by constituting District Wakf Committees, Mandal Wakf Committees and Committees for the individual Wakf Institutions.
- The wakf Boards shall be body corporate having perpetual succession and common seal with power to acquire and hold property.
- In case more than fifteen percent of total number of wakf property is shia wakf or income thereof is more than fifteen percent the Act envisages about separate Shia Wakf Board.
Presently there are thirty Wakf Boards across the country in twenty-nine states/Union territories. The State like Goa, Arunachal pradesh, Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim and the UT Daman & Dieu have no wakf Board at present. The Waqf Act 1995 is not applicable to J&K.
A waqf is an inalienable religious endowment in Islamic law, typically donating a building or plot of land or even cash for Muslim religious or charitable purposes. The donated assets are held by a charitable trust.
Sources: The Hindu, karwakf.gov.in, Wiki, Ministry of Minority affairs.
Governor’s rule in J&K
Jammu and Kashmir has come under Governor’s rule with no political party coming forward and staking claim to form the government.
As none of the parties has so far staked claim to form the government, the governance of the State cannot be carried out in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution of the State. Consequently, with the approval of the President of India, Governor’s rule has been imposed in the State under Section 92(1) of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir with effect from January 8, 2015.
- In the event of failure of constitutional machinery in Jammu and Kashmir, Governor’s Rule is imposed by invoking Section 92 of Jammu & Kashmir State constitution.
- Governor’s rule proclamation is issued by Jammu & Kashmir State Governor after obtaining consent of the President of India.
- Under section 92 of the Jammu and Kashmir constitution, the governor is empowered to recommend six months of Governor’s rule to the Indian president.
- If it is not possible to revoke Governor’s rule before within six months of imposition, President’s Rule under Article 356 of the Constitution of India is imposed.
- Jammu and Kashmir is the only state that has a constitution of its own which is applicable concomitantly with the Indian constitution.
Once the governor issues the proclamation, the assembly would be kept in suspended animation to give more time to the political parties to work out a coalition to rule the country’s only Muslim-majority state.
Sources: The Hindu, Wiki, BS.