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7-min read

News18 Daybreak | Cabinet Likely to Pass Ordinance Against 13-Point Roster System in its Last Meeting Today and Other Stories You Need to Watch Out For

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Updated:March 7, 2019, 10:46 AM IST
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What to Watch Out For

Cabinet likely to pass ordinance against 13-point roster system in its last meeting

The Cabinet in its last meeting today is expected to pass an ordinance to negate the Supreme Court order enforcing the 13-point UGC roster system in universities.

The move comes only two days after Dalit and Adivasi rights groups around the countries went on strike to demand a reprieve of the new roster system and the quashing of SC order evicting 10 lakh tribals and forest-dwelling families.

Past developments: In January the Supreme Court had upheld the Allahabad High Court’s decision to implement this roster system, dismissing all the appeals by the Centre and the UGC. The government had at the time promised to bring in an ordinance if their subsequent review petition gets quashed. Then on February 27, the Centre’s review petition was dismissed by the SC.

Union Human Resource Development Minister Prakash Javadekar on Tuesday said that “all necessary legal means will be taken and the university community will get justice” promising a reversal to the old 200-point system.

“Reservation should be given considering a university as one whole unit, and not in a department-wise manner,” he said.

Why it matters: According to the University Grant Commission's new 13-point roster system, individual departments and not universities or colleges will be considered as the unit for implementing reservation for SC/ST or OBC in appointments for faculty positions Many have said that this will drastically cut the number of posts reserved for the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Other Backward Classes. Dalits, Adivasis and the Other Backward Classes who have been accorded 15%, 7.5% and 27% reservation respectively. Hence, if the unit under consideration is small, there will be no scope for ensuring reservation.

Meanwhile, the SC stayed the eviction order calling for an investigation into the tribals’ claims over the lands in question.

‘For our rights’: Tuesday’s bandh witnessed thousands of people across several states of India stage protests for promulgation against the two court orders. Political parties including the Congress, Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party and the Rashtriya Lok Dal had also expressed their support for the demands.

Congress chief Rahul Gandhi had hit out at the government in a Twitter post saying, “Our tribal and Dalit siblings are in crisis. The false promises and false promises of the prime minister have forced them to land on the streets today. Their forest and the right to life are constantly attacked. Withholding forest rights. From tampering in constitutional reservation. I am completely with them.”

In the national capital, members of the Delhi Union Teacher’s Association, Krantikari Yuva Sangathan and several others had gathered in Jantar Mantar to protest against the orders.

What You May Have Missed

‘Stolen Rafale Files’ in public domain, can't be untouchable: SC terms govt defence bad in law

The central government on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that it is contemplating criminal actions against those involved in ‘illegal’ leaks and ‘stealing’ of some pertinent documents from the Ministry of Defence (MoD). In what may also be construed as certifying the authenticity of the documents published by The Hindu newspaper and news agency ANI, Attorney General KK Venugopal argued that the top court cannot rely on these documents since they were not only stolen but also marked as classified under the Official Secrets Act. But the bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi told the government that if the documents were stolen, it is for the government to put its house in order.

The SC was hearing a clutch of petitions on the review on the earlier verdict which had ruled in favour of the Centre on the 36 Rafale jet deal with France.

    Here are a few other highlights from Wednesday's hearing:

- Justice KM Joseph asked the government why stolen or unlawful documents cannot be looked into irrespective of how it helps the court. “There were allegations of corruption in Bofors. Now will you say the same thing that a criminal court shouldn't look into any such document?”

- Attorney General KK Venugopal expressed displeasure, questioning how the court could deal with a defence contract. “This is the only country where a court is examining a defence deal as if it is a matter of administrative law.”

- Citing the ongoing tensions between India and Pakistan, the Attorney General underscored the importance of having Rafale jets in the Indian Air Force. "We need Rafale jet to defend our country from F-16 fighter planes that recently bombed us. Without Rafale, how can we resist them," the A-G said. "Rafale fighter jets are needed although MIG-21 of 1960s performed beautifully against F-16," he added.

Read the details here.

The court has now fixed March 14 for further hearing on the matter.

Illustration by Mir Suhail/News18.com

‘Can't undo what Babur did’: Supreme Court reserves order on mediation in Ayodhya dispute

The Supreme Court on Wednesday in the Ayodhya court case hearing observed that it cannot undo what Mughal emperor Babur did centuries ago, but that it is more concerned about the current situation and "healing of relations". Sitting as a part of the Constitution Bench to adjudicate Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute, Justice SA Bobde said, “We also know history. We all have read the history. We are trying to tell that we have no control over what happened in the past. We have no control over Babar invading or who demolished what. We cannot undo that." The Supreme Court, however, reserved its order on the point of mediation and asked all sides to suggest names of mediators in the meantime. The Yogi Adityanath-led UP govt has, however, opposed the mediation saying it is not suitable in the "current circumstances"

Govt risks trade battle with US over religious opposition to dairy items from ‘non-veg’ cows

US insistence that India import dairy products sourced from animals that are fed blood meal may prove to be a roadblock in New Delhi’s efforts to get reinstated into a coveted list of countries enjoying duty-free exports to the US. India has cited “cultural and religious sentiments” to take a “non-negotiable” stand against US demand, despite experts saying there is a scientific basis for such a decision too. Non-agreement on this issue is one of the major reasons why US President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that he intends to end preferential trade treatment for India under generalised system of preferences (GSP) that allows $5.6 billion worth of Indian exports to enter the US duty-free.

News18 Elections Lab: February was the bloodiest month for security forces in Kashmir since September 2002

Ever since the Pulwama suicide attack in the valley on February 14, the militancy-hit state of Jammu and Kashmir is again on the boil with security forces cracking down on militants. With at least 49 security forces personnel killed during the month, February was the bloodiest month for the security forces in the valley since September 2002 when 68 personnel had lost their lives in terrorist-related incidents of killings. Read Fazil Khan’s report here.

Allies in Tamil Nadu pose new problem for BJP, demand release of Rajiv Gandhi's killers

The AIADMK-PMK combine is said to have to reiterated its demand for the release of all seven convicts in Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. The alliance members are likely to put forward their recommendation during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Chennai. According to top sources in the AIADMK, the release of the convicts will help BJP's 'mega alliance' get political mileage in the run-up to the polls, as it could turn the public sentiment favourably.

Laser bombs caused ‘internal damage’, say sources after report claims Balakot camp still standing

The Indian Air Force has given the government radar and satellite images that showed bombing of the "intended targets" at the JeM terrorist training camp in Pakistan's Balakot had "causing significant damage" to it, sources in the security establishment said on Wednesday. The source-based information about the "evidence" comes after a Reuters report claimed that satellite images of the Jaish-e-Mohammad Madrasa in Balakot showed the facility is still intact and buildings are standing. Sources told news agency PTI that the S-2000 laser-guided bombs hit the target and caused significant “internal damage” at the site, sources said. S-2000 smart bombs penetrate the targets and cause a blast inside, they said. This comes at a time when people from all camps, especially opposition party leaders, have demanded for evidence of the casualty count incurred in the strike.

Balakot-terror-camp

India's unemployment highest since 2016, climbs to 7.2% in February: CMIE report

The unemployment rate in India rose to 7.2 per cent in February 2019, the highest since September 2016, and up from 5.9 per cent in February 2018, according to data compiled by the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) that was released on Tuesday. The unemployment rate has climbed despite a fall in the number of job seekers, Mahesh Vyas, head of the Mumbai-based think-tank said, citing an estimated fall in the labour force participation rate. The figures will be unwelcome news for Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of the Lok Sabha elections as concerns about weak farm prices and low jobs growth are often brought up as election issues by opposition parties.

On Reel

US President Donald Trump has said that he intends to end India's preferential trade treatment under generalised system of preferences (GSP) that allows $5.6 billion worth of Indian exports to enter the United States duty-free. News18 Explains what this move means and how it will affect the India-US Trade.

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