Reading Time: 8 mins Housing is one of the basic requirements of human survival. Normal citizen owning a house provides significant economic and social security status in society. For a shelter-less person, a house with basic necessity brings about a profound change in his existence, endowing him with an identity, thus integrating him with his immediate social milieu. With this in mind, the government had launched Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana in 2015 to provide housing for all by 2022. Numerous challenges are faced by the government while undertaking this momentous scheme. These need to be addressed for this vision to be implemented within the deadline.
Reading Time: 8 mins Smart Cities Mission is a step taken by the Indian government to provide a better lifestyle and amenities to the people. It is considered to be a key player in the direction of comprehensively developing physical, institutional, social and economic infrastructure of the cities, that are all important in improving the quality of life and attracting people and investments to the city, thereby setting in motion a virtuous cycle of growth and development. Four years since its launch, there is no doubt that expectation will continue to be high. Technically, only one more year is left but a large number of projects are still under implementation. It is facing numerous challenges and these need to be addressed for this programme to yield the intended benefit.
Reading Time: 6 mins Kerala’s Sabarimala Temple issue is about the conflict between women rights and tradition. According to age-old traditions and customs, women from ten to fifty years of age were not permitted into Sabarimala Temple. However, the situation has changed when the constitutional bench of the Supreme Court on September 28, 2018, declared that restricting entry of women of menstruating age was unconstitutional. Thus the SC allowed women, irrespective of their age, to enter Sabarimala temple.
Reading Time: 8 mins The Supreme Court had given the much-awaited verdict on the Ram Janmabhoomi – Babri Masjid land dispute case. Though this verdict, the Apex court cleared the way for the construction of a Ram temple at the disputed site at Ayodhya and directed the Centre to allot a 5-acre of land to the Sunni Waqf Board for building a mosque. It is one of the most important and most anticipated judgements in India’s history. The Constitutional Bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi put an end to the more than a century-old dispute that has torn the social fabric of the nation.
Reading Time: 6 mins The Indian Government had decided to prepare a National Population Register (NPR) by September 2020 to lay a foundation for rolling out citizens’ register across the country. Once the NPR is completed and published, it will become the basis for the National Register of Indian Citizens, a pan-India version of Assam’s National Register of Citizens. The NPR is to be implemented on a priority basis in areas affected by infiltration. Though this move is a necessary step to ensure the security of the nation and also for the efficient implementation of the welfare schemes, there are still concerns over the privacy, legality and government’s capacity to undertake this mammoth task ahead.
Reading Time: 6 mins
The Union Budget 2019-20 saw an increased focus on food fortification. India is currently suffering from nutrition insecurity despite the progress made in food production capacity and food security. Regardless of all the poverty alleviation and food security schemes, currently, 38% of children under 5 years are stunted, 36% are underweight and 21% are wasted (too thin for their height). This is a sign of acute under-nutrition. Furthermore, 59% of women and 53% of children are anaemic. The government’s intervention to address this issue is a need of the hour.
Reading Time: 10 mins
Food and Nutrition Security Analysis, 2019 – report that was recently published showed the bleak picture of the hunger and malnutrition amongst children in India. Regardless of all measures taken by the Indian government to ensure economic growth, implementation of numerous government schemes to eradicate poverty and malnutrition, undernourishment remains high among the poor in Indian society. If the situation is not addressed soon, the aspiration to achieve SDG-2 may become far more difficult.
Reading Time: 4 mins
The UN General Assembly on May 2019 adopted a resolution that welcomed the International Court of Justice’s advisory opinion on the legal consequences of the separation of Chagos Archipelago from Mauritius in 1965. This resolution, in accordance with the ICJ’s advisory, has demanded the complete withdrawal of the UK and the US within six months from the archipelago. Countries like Australia, the US, the UK, Hungary, Israel, and Maldives were against this resolution. It has stated that the decolonization of Mauritius was not in accordance with the right to self-determination and that the UK’s sovereignty over the Chagos Archipelago establishes a “wrongful act”. However, the stance taken by the major colonial powers like the US and the UK shows their unwillingness to adapt to the new era, the one that is defined by freedom and liberty of their previously colonised territories.