INDIAN EXPRESS EDITORIAL’S AND EXPLAINED 13th DECEMBER 2019

ISSUE: NEED TO REFORM THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM

BACKGROUND: Encounter by Hyderabad Police.

WHAT ARE THE COMPONENTS OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM? 

  1. Police,
  2. Prosecution
  3. Judiciary
  4. Prisons

WHAT DOES THIS INSTANT JUSTICE MEANS?

This philosophy of  “teaching a lesson”, “on-the-spot justice” the fact that the criminal justice system has failed in the country.

One main reason is the delay in trials. Even if a criminal is convicted, the appeals that follow lead to a further delay of more than five years. This has meant that citizens lose faith in the law and they hero-worship officers who “encounter” these criminals.

Most of the cases are so delayed that witnesses lose interest or do not attend hearings. Documents are lost, seized weapons are not traceable. The investigating officers get transferred and thus can not monitor trials. The complainant, after pursuing the case for some time, gives up.

WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE? 

While police investigation and presentation by the prosecutors need to improve, it is the judiciary that must rise to the occasion.

Session courts need to finish cases at one go, within a week or fortnight, and not hear them in the piecemeal manner they are doing currently. They need to clamp down heavily on adjournments.

Similarly, higher courts must dispose of appeals within a fixed time frame. Expenses for more judicial officers and their staff should be met by the Centre and state governments jointly.

If a rape accused is sentenced and his final appeal disposed of within a year, I see no scope for encounters or the public’s agitation. It is because justice has become a rarity and criminals on bail are burning girls after raping them that citizens have lost their patience.

For police, medical officers, forensic experts, prosecutors and judicial officers to work together as a team, it is essential that formal interactive sessions between them are organised. Regular training workshops will lead to an exchange of information, knowledge-sharing and mutual trust among different wings of the criminal justice system.

While the emotional response of a parent who has lost her daughter to rapists is totally understandable, as a nation, we have to invest in long term-solutions. That means investing in all four wings of the crumbling criminal justice system — police, prosecution, judiciary and prisons.

 

ISSUE: PRESSURE ON PAKISTAN BY FATF

The framing of charges against Hafiz Saeed by an anti-terrorism court in Lahore is the direct result of actions that the international anti-terror watchdog, the Financial Action Task Force.

Pakistan is already under GREY LIST of FATF but there is fear that Pakistan might be placed under BLACK LIST.

A blacklisting by the FATF, an organisation de facto run by the US Treasury department, would be ruinous for Pakistan.

It is important for India that the FATF stays the course with Pakistan because it is the only body that has had a demonstrable effect on the country’s approach to terror groups based on its soil. Saeed or the LeT/JuD are not the only terrorist entities across the border that have India in their crosshairs. Eventually, the action Pakistan takes against these groups will be judged by the impact it has in the region.

ABOUT FINANCIAL ACTION TASK FORCE

FATF is an intergovernmental organization founded in 1989 on the initiative of

G7 to develop policies to combat money laundering.

In 2001 its mandate was expanded to include terrorism financing.

HQ: Paris

FATF has included Pakistan in its GREY LIST.

FATF has 2 types of lists;

  1. Black List
  2. Grey List
  3. Black List:Only those countries are included in this list that FATF considers as unco-operative tax havens for terror funding. These countries are known as Non-Cooperative Countries or Territories (NCCTs). In other words; countries which are supporting terror funding and money laundering activities are listed in the Black list.

The FATF blacklist or OECD blacklist has been issued by the Financial Action Task Force since 2000 and lists countries which it judges to be non-cooperative in the global fight against money laundering and terror funding.

The FATF updates the blacklist regularly, adding or deleting entries.

  1. Grey List:Those countries which are not considered as the safe heaven for supporting terror funding and money laundering; included in this list. The inclusion in this list is not as severe as black listed.

Now Grey list is a warning given to the country that it might come in Black list (Just like a yellow card in a football match). If a country is unable to curb mushrooming of terror funding and money laundering; it is shifted from grey list to black list by the FATF.

When a country comes in the Grey list, it faces many problems like;

  1. Economic sanctions from international institutions (IMF, World Bank, ADB etc.) and countries
  2. Problem in getting loans from international institutions (IMF, World Bank, ADB etc.) and countries
  3. 3. Overall Reduction in its international trade
  4. International boycott

 

ISSUE:  ANGLO INDIANS

WHY IN NEWS?

On Thursday, Parliament passed the Constitution (126th Amendment) Bill, extending reservation for SC/STs but doing away with the provision for nomination of Anglo Indians to Lok Sabha and some state Assemblies.

Who are Anglo-Indians?

The Anglo-Indian community in India traces its origins to an official policy of the British East India Company to encourage marriages of its officers with local women.

The term Anglo-Indian first appeared in the Government of India Act, 1935. In the present context, Article 366(2) of the Constitution Of India states: “An Anglo-Indian means a person whose father or any of whose other male progenitors in the male line is or was of European descent but who is domiciled within the territory of India and is or was born within such territory of parents habitually resident therein and not established there for temporary purposes only…”

Under what provisions was reservation in legislature granted?

Provision for nomination of two Anglo-Indians to Lok Sabha was made under Article 331 of the Constitution. It says: “Notwithstanding anything in Article 81, the President may, if he is of opinion that the Anglo-Indian community is not adequately represented in the House of the people, nominate not more than two members of that community to the House of the People.”

Currently 14 Assemblies have one Anglo-Indian member each: Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and West Bengal. The 126th Amendment does away with this as well.

According to the 10th Schedule of the Constitution, Anglo-Indian members of Lok Sabha and state Assemblies can take the membership of any party within six months of their nomination. But, once they do so, they are bound by their party whip.

The Anglo-Indian members enjoy the same powers as others, but they can not vote in the Presidential election because they are nominated by the President.

 

ISSUE: COMPARISON BETWEEN INDIAN AND EUROPEAN DATA PROTECTION BILL

WHY IN NEWS? 

The Personal Data Protection (PDP) Bill, 2019, introduced in Lok Sabha this week, has been referred to a joint select committee.

It has significant parallels to the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Where they differ

Data transfer abroad: One significant difference between the GDPR and the PDP Bill is the framework built around deciding whether or not data can leave the country. Both give a government authority the power to decide if data transfers can occur, but the GDPR more clearly lays out the parameters of this decision.

Their “adequacy decision” is made based on the country’s rule of law, authorities, and other international commitments. The transfer can be made without this decision if there are legally binding rules or other codes of conduct that allow for it.

The PDP simply states that the Authority has to have approval of the transfer of any sensitive personal data abroad, without specifying as many details about the other country’s “adequacy” in receiving the data.

Automated decisions: The GDPR much more directly addresses personal harm from automated decision-making. The PDP Bill requires an assessment in cases of large-scale profiling, but does not give the citizen the right to object to profiling, except in the cases of children.

This decision making includes, for example, a corporation deciding your credit score as well as profiling an individual to target them with advertising that has now become the bedrock of the data economy.

Personal data types: To give special attention to particularly important types of data, India’s PDP Bill categorises personal data much more explicitly. In the Indian Bill, a sub-category of personal data called sensitive personal data has a pre-determined list including health, financial, caste, and biometric data.

It resembles the list of “special categories” in the GDPR, but the GDPR does not have separate localisation rules for this type of data. The PDP Bill, on the other hand, does not allow for sensitive personal data to be stored abroad and can only be processed abroad with authority approval.

In addition, the PDP Bill categorises “critical personal data” as an open-ended category in which government can define from time to time.

Critical personal data can never leave the country, for storage or processing, according to the PDP.

The PDP Bill, unlike the draft Bill, has allowed the Government of India to direct any entity handling data to provide them with “non-personal data”, or anonymised data. The GDPR, on the other hand, states: “This Regulation does not therefore concern the processing of such anonymous information, including for statistical or research purpose”.

Where they are alike

Exceptions: The exceptions given to the Indian Bill and the EU Regulation look similar. Both allow data processing for prevention, investigation, detection, or prosecution of criminal offences. Both also discuss “public security”, “defence”, and “judicial” proceedings. The GDPR states: “This Regulation does not apply to issues of protection of fundamental rights and freedoms or the free flow of personal data related to activities which fall outside the scope of Union law, such as activities concerning national security. This Regulation does not apply to the processing of personal data by the Member States when carrying out activities in relation to the common foreign and security policy of the Union.”

Consent: The PDP Bill and the GDPR are founded upon the concept of consent. In other words, data processing should be allowed when the individual allows it. Consent carries similar meanings, with words like “free”, “specific”, and “informed”. “Reasonable expectations” are also a parameter for processing, as are limiting the collection and purposes for collection. They also both given special protection to children’s lack of ability to give consent.

Individual’s rights: Both have similar rights given to the individual, including the right to correction, the right to data portability (transferring your data to another entity), and the right to be forgotten (the right to erase the disclosure of your data). But, as mentioned above, the right to object to profiling is in the GDPR and not the PDP Bill.

Where they are alike

Exceptions: The exceptions given to the Indian Bill and the EU Regulation look similar. Both allow data processing for prevention, investigation, detection, or prosecution of criminal offences. Both also discuss “public security”, “defence”, and “judicial” proceedings. The GDPR states: “This Regulation does not apply to issues of protection of fundamental rights and freedoms or the free flow of personal data related to activities which fall outside the scope of Union law, such as activities concerning national security. This Regulation does not apply to the processing of personal data by the Member States when carrying out activities in relation to the common foreign and security policy of the Union.”

Consent: The PDP Bill and the GDPR are founded upon the concept of consent. In other words, data processing should be allowed when the individual allows it. Consent carries similar meanings, with words like “free”, “specific”, and “informed”. “Reasonable expectations” are also a parameter for processing, as are limiting the collection and purposes for collection. They also both given special protection to children’s lack of ability to give consent.

Individual’s rights: Both have similar rights given to the individual, including the right to correction, the right to data portability (transferring your data to another entity), and the right to be forgotten (the right to erase the disclosure of your data). But, as mentioned above, the right to object to profiling is in the GDPR and not the PDP Bill.

 

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