CAO The Hindu NOTES – 20th April, 2018 (Daily News Paper Current Affairs Analysis)

📰THE HINDU NEWSPAPER DAILY  Hindu Current Affairs Analysis

Date:- 20th April, 2018


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The Supreme Court on Thursday derided that public interest litigation has become an “industry of vested interests” rather than a powerful tool to espouse the cause of the marginalised and oppressed.

The top court deprecated brazen misuse of PIL jurisdiction by people with personal agenda with an aim to seek publicity or to settle political and business rivalries. It becomes a problem since the resources of the legal system gets consumed by an avalanche of misdirected petitions purportedly filed in the public interest which, upon due scrutiny, are found to promote a personal, business or political agenda. And this would cost the judiciary dearly by denuding the efficacy of the judicial system by detracting from the ability of the court to devote its time and resources to cases which legitimately require attention.

The bench opined that the essential aspect of a genuine PIL petition was that the person who moves the court should have no personal interest in the outcome of the proceedings, apart from a general standing as a citizen before the court.

What is a PIL?

Public Interest Litigation means litigation for the protection of the public interest. It is litigation introduced in a court of law, not by the aggrieved party but by the court itself or by any other private party.

Public interest litigation is the power given to the public by courts through judicial activism. However, the person filing the petition must prove to the satisfaction of the court that the petition is being filed for a public interest and not just as a frivolous litigation by a busy body.


The Centre has set up a Defence Planning Committee (DPC) chaired by National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval to facilitate “comprehensive” planning for the defence forces besides focusing on military doctrines to deal with emerging security challenges.

Apart from the NSA, the committee will comprise the foreign secretary, chairman of chiefs of staff committee, the Army, Navy and Air Force chiefs and secretary (expenditure) in the Finance Ministry.

Further the chairman can co-opt experts into it depending on requirement.

Several military sources and observers said that the new panel can help improve India’s defence planning in the long term, but may end up having no noticeable impact if the present government does not return to power in 2019.

Mandates of the committee

The committee would prepare drafts of national security strategy and doctrines, international defence engagement strategy and roadmap to build defence manufacturing ecosystem

It will also work on strategy for development of Indian defence industry and technology advancements to boost defence exports, and prioritised capability development plans for the armed forces.

The notification listed creation four sub-committees of the DPC to look at these aspects mandated. The sub-committees are likely to be in areas of policy and strategy, plans and capability development, defence diplomacy and defence manufacturing ecosystem. Members of these sub-committees will be decided by the DPC, which is expected to hold its first meeting soon.


A group of ministers (GoM) on transport has recommended a uniform structure of road tax for vehicles across States at a meeting held in Guwahati.

The rationale behind the observation is that a uniform tax structure will put a check on people registering their vehicles in low tax States and running them in other States. This would also bring necessary relief to genuine cases requiring transfer of vehicles.

The GoM also mooted a national bus and taxi permit on the lines of national permit for goods transport.  The public transport in the country is growing annually at a rate of just about 2%, as against a 20% annual growth in private transport. This is causing large increase in the number of vehicles and in turn further congests the under capacitated Indian roads.

In this context it’s expected that national permits will give the much needed fillip to public transport and help reduce road congestion and its attendant problems.

The GoM also mulled ways to promote alternate fuel for vehicles and suggested liberalising permits for electric vehicles, and raising the tax on diesel vehicles by 2% while lowering the tax on electric vehicles.


These are ad hoc bodies formed to give recommendations to the cabinet on certain emergent issues and critical problem areas.

In addition to cabinet committees, several Groups of Ministers (GoMs) have been constituted to look into different issues / subjects. Some of these GoMs have been empowered to take decisions on behalf of the Cabinet whereas the others make recommendations to the Cabinet.

In the past two decades, the institution of GoMs has become a viable and effective instrument of coordination among the ministries.

Ministers heading the concerned ministries are inducted into the relevant GoMs and when the advice is crystallised they are disbanded.


Supreme Court Judge D.Y. Chandrachud, during the Constitution Bench hearing in the Aadhaar case observed that the Aadhaar Act does not record the caste, religion, race, etc., of individuals, thus ensuring that these demographics are not used to discriminate among citizens.

About Aadhaar

Aadhaar is a 12 digit individual identification number issued by UIDAI (Unique identification authority of India) on behalf of Government of India to serve as an identity and address proof anywhere in India.

It is considered as the world’s largest national identification project. Its objective is to collect the biometric and demographic data of residents, store them in a centralised database.

  • It is available in 2 forms, physical and electronic form i.e. (e-Aadhaar).
  • Any resident (a person who has resided in India for 182 days, in the one year preceding the date of application for enrollment for Aadhaar) of India irrespective of age, sex, class can avail it.
  • The UID authority will authenticate the Aadhaar number of an individual, if an entity makes such a request. A requesting entity (an agency or person that wants to authenticate information of a person) has to obtain the consent of an individual before collecting his information.


Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday urged Home Minister Rajnath Singh to prepare a comprehensive strategy to deal with the “re-emergence of extremism” in the state, amid reports that Sikh youths were being trained at ISI facilities in Pakistan.

There is also an international angle to the recent events, there are several pro-Khalisthan foreign handlers based in countries like Canada, UK, USA, Italy, Germany who are actively engaged in activities for reviving terrorism in Punjab.

A number of targeted killings have taken place over the last one-and-half-years in Punjab to incite violence and unrest. The NIA is currently investigating these killings, suspected to be carried out as part of a conspiracy to disturb communal harmony in the state.

There is also a threat put up by the use of social media by the extremist elements aimed at disturbing peace and stability in the state which needs to be countered.


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