Current Affairs Current Affairs - 18 October 2018 - Vikalp Education

Online Vikalp, Current Affairs, Current Awareness, General Awareness, Aptitude Classes, Daily News, General Knowledge, General Awareness For All Competitive Exam, current affairs quiz,current affairs in india, current affairs about sports, current affairs and gk, current affairs about india, current affairs daily quiz, current affairs dairy, current affairs education, Top News, Breaking News, Latest News

Current Affairs - 18 October 2018

General Affairs 

Soon A Railway Station Inside Tunnel, Near India-China Border In Himachal
  • For the first time in India, a railway station will be built inside a tunnel at a height of 3,000 metres, on the strategic Bilaspur-Manali-Leh line close to the India-China border. While many metro stations in Delhi and other cities are inside tunnels, once completed, the Keylong station in Himachal Pradesh will be the first on the railway network to be inside a tunnel.
    Keylong is the administrative centre of Lahaul and Spiti district, 26 km north of Manali and 120 km from the Indo-Tibetan border.

    "The Keylong station, in the project, will be inside the tunnel according to the first phase of the location survey. This will be the first such railway station in the country. As and when the final surveys are completed, there could be many such stations on the route," D R Gupta, chief engineer construction, Northern Railway, told news agency PTI.

    .The line once completed will connect all important locations between Bilaspur and Leh like Sundernagar, Mandi, Manali, Keylong, Koksar, Darcha, Upshi and Karu and other towns of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir. It is important because of its proximity to the Sino-India border and can facilitate in movement of goods and personnel to the frontier areas. Railways is considering to declare it a national project. 

     "We have suggested that the project be declared a national project as once completed it will help our armed forces, as well as boost tourism and lead to the development of the region," said General Manager, Northern Railway, Vishesh Chaube.

    The advantage of a project being declared a national project is that a major chunk of the funding for the project is borne by the central government.

    The project will include 74 tunnels, 124 major bridges and 396 minor bridges, according to the first phase of the survey.

    Once finished, the line will halve the duration taken to cover the distance between Delhi and Leh, from 40 hours to 20 hours," said Vishwesh Chaube, general manager, Northern Railway.

    The final location survey is expected to be completed in 30 months, after which a detailed project report will be finalised.

The Story Of Sabarimala: Origin, Beliefs And Controversy Over Women Entry
  • Sabarimala is a prominent Hindu temple located on a hilltop in Kerala's Pathanamthitta district. It is surrounded by 18 hills in the Periyar Tiger Reserve. The temple is dedicated to Ayyappa, the God of growth. The temple attracts pilgrims from Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh and from various parts of the country and the world. The temple is open for worship only during the days of Mandalapooja in November-December, Makara Sankranti on January 14 and Maha Vishuva Sankranti on April 14, and the first five days of each Malayalam month.

    Sabarimala is an ancient temple. It was mostly unreachable for about three centuries after its installation. In the 12th century, a prince of Pandalam Dynasty, Manikandan, rediscovered the original path to reach Sabarimala. He had many followers with him, including the descendants of the Vavar (a Muslim warrior whom Manikandan defeated) family. This Prince is considered an Avatar of Ayyappa. It is believed that he meditated at Sabarimala temple and became one with the divine.


    The pilgrims of Sabarimala have to reach the temple through difficult treks in the forest as the vehicles cannot reach there.

    The pilgrims have to observe celibacy for 41 days before going to Sabarimala. They are also required to strictly follow a lacto-vegetarian diet, refrain from alcohol, not use any profanity and allow the hair and nails to grow without cutting. They are expected to bath twice in a day and visit the local temples regularly.

    They wear black or blue clothes, do not shave until the completion of the pilgrimage, and smear vibhuti or sandal paste on their forehead.

    Controversy over women entry

    The ban on women entering the temple premises is being practised for centuries, as devotees consider Lord Ayappa, the presiding deity of the temple, to be celibate.

    In 1991, the Kerala High Court restricted entry of women above the age of 10 and below the age of 50 from Sabarimala temple as they were of the menstruating age. 27 years later on September 28, 2018, the Supreme Court lifted the ban, saying that discrimination against women on any grounds, even religious is unconstitutional.

    Temple's head priest, Kandaru Rajeevaru, said they were "disappointed" by the court order but accepted it.

    Following the court's order, hundreds of Ayyappa devotees, including women, blocked the state and national highways in various parts of Kerala.

    The protests took a political turn after BJP ally Shiv Sena warned of "mass suicides" if women set foot inside the Sabarimala temple. The protests intensified as the date of opening neared. On October 17, when the doors to Sabarimala opened, the protesters camped at the base of the trek at Nilakkal and and at the last stretch of the trek at Pamba to stop women from entering the temple.

Buddhist Circuit Project To Be Completed By 2020: Nitin Gadkari
  • Union minister Nitin Gadkari said today that the ongoing project to develop Buddhist circuit in the country will be completed by 2020.
    He said the project, which will connect the places of importance of Buddha's life, is being carried out at a cost of Rs. 10,000 crore.

    "A huge number of devotees of Gautam Buddha from across the world visit India. However, due to lack of proper roads they are not able to visit the Buddhist pilgrimage sites," the Minister Road Transport & Highways said in a press conference in Nagpur.

    Mr Gadkari said, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways is developing roads at various places in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar to connect the Buddhist pilgrimage sites, including Vaishali, Patna, Bodh Gaya, Rajgir, Nalanda, Kahalgaon and Vikramshila.

    "The Buddhist circuit, which includes places of high significance in Buddhism will be completed by 2020 with an investment of about Rs. 10,000 crore," he added.

    Construction of roads as part of the Buddhist circuit is currently underway, the senior BJP leader said adding that the project would increase the number of foreign tourists and generate job opportunities.

    "Our department has prepared the Buddhist circuit plan that involves three parts - the Buddhist circuit Bihar, Dharmayatra circuit and Extended Dharmayatra circuit," the minister said.

    According to him, the Buddhist circuit Bihar plan includes Bodh Gaya, Nalanda, Rajgir, Vaishali, Kahalgaon and Patna; the Dharmayatra circuit includes Bodh Gaya (Bihar), Sarnath (UP), Kushinagar (UP) and Piprahwa (UP), while the Extended Dharamayatra circuit includes Bodh Gaya (Bihar), Vikramshila (Bihar), Sarnath (UP), Kushinagar (UP), Kapilvastu (UP), Sankisa (UP) and Piprahwa (UP).

69% Of 598 Wards Did Not Require Polling In Kashmir Local Body Elections
  • The just-concluded urban local body elections in Kashmir witnessed poor voter turnout but these polls will perhaps be remembered for the dearth of contestants as 69 per cent of 598 wards in the valley did not require any polling.
    According to data compiled by the election department of Jammu and Kashmir, out of 598 wards spanning across 40 municipal bodies in 10 districts of the valley, polling was held only in 186 wards.

    The remaining 412 wards - constituting 68.89 per cent of the total - did not require any voting.

    The government had made elaborate security arrangements to secure polling staff and polling stations but kept the identity of candidates, who dared to defy terrorists threats, a secret for security reasons.

    As a result, there was no campaigning for these elections and in most cases the candidates chose to remain anonymous.

    Over thirty per cent of wards in these 40 urban local bodies across Kashmir valley will remain unrepresented.

    No nomination papers were received from 181 wards (30.26 per cent) for the elections. Most of these wards were in the third phase of the polls - 62, followed by 56 in the second phase, 44 in the last and 19 in the first phase.

    Out of the 598 wards, 231 wards - 38.62 per cent - were those which saw no contest and the solitary candidate in each of these wards was declared winner unopposed.

    While 69 of these wards were in the first phase, 61 were in the second, 49 in the third and 52 in the fourth and last phase.

    In these polls, six municipal bodies had two or less contesting candidates in total - two of them zero.

    For Pulwama municipal body, which has 13 wards, there were only two contesting candidates who won unopposed. Awantipora, Beerwah and Seer Hamdan municipal bodies - all having 13 wards each - had only one contesting candidate each in the whole civic body.

    Frisal in Kulgam district and Khrew in Pulwama district - both in south Kashmir - received no nomination papers from any of the 13 wards each body has.

    In total, out of the 40 civic bodies in the valley, voting did not take place in 27 of them.

    The poll percentage in the rest of the 13 municipal bodies was recorded at 8.3 per cent in the first phase, 3.4 per cent in the second, 3.5 per cent in the third and 4.2 per cent in the fourth and last phase.

    The reasons for the low participation in these polls - candidate-wise as well as voting percentage-wise - can be attributed to threats by militants against any participation in these polls.

    Stringent security arrangements were made for the smooth conduct of the polls, while candidates at many places were taken to secure locations - which meant no visible campaign for the polls in the valley.

    The state's two main parties National Conference (NC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) - along with CPI(M) stayed away from the polls because of the legal challenge to Article 35-A of the Constitution in the Supreme Court.

Soldier Arrested in UP's Meerut In Connection With BrahMos Spying Case
  • An Indian Army personnel has been arrested in Uttar Pradesh's Meerut today in connection with the BrahMos spying case. The soldier, part of the Signal Regiment, was picked up by the military intelligence (MI) days after an engineer at the BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited in Maharashtra was arrested by the UP police.

    Kanchan Singh, who is from Uttarakhand, has spent 10 years in the Army, but he had been under the intelligence unit's radar for the last three months. Sources say he was sharing "confidential and vital information" related to the Western Command with the Pakistan intelligence agency ISI.

    The UP police say the military intelligence officers informed them about the soldier's arrest in the morning. The MI officers are said to be questioning him.

    Nishant Agrawal, the arrested BrahMos Aerospace engineer, had reportedly been interacting with two Islamabad-based Facebook accounts, the UP police's Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) had said. The UP police said that Mr Agrawal was in touch with Pakistan's intelligence operatives through these accounts.

    The investigation into the espionage case led to the soldier's arrest today, UP police said.

    "The military intelligence will be able to give more details in the case," a senior UP police officer told.

Business Affairs

IL&FS ex-MD Hari Sankaran blames LIC for crisis; seeks probe by a foreign agency
  • Hari Sankaran, the former vice-chairman and managing director of debt-laden IL&FS, has blamed Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) and the 'capital intensive' nature of infrastructure business for the problems faced by IL&FS group. Sankaran also denied all charges of corruption and wrong doing.

    In a 34-page affidavit filed with the National Company Law tribunal (NCLT), Sankaran said that LIC's decision in 2015 to not go ahead with the proposed merger with Piramal group led to a cash crunch at the troubled company.

    "It was anticipated that the merger (with Piramal), once completed would have generated around Rs 8,500 crore by way of investible funds in the merged entity," Sankaran said.

    "The said term sheet contained standstill obligations on IL&FS, which were then anticipated to be in force for 3-4 months. However, this standstill period got extended to almost 9-10 months - largely because LIC took time to consider the proposal and ultimately did not agree with the merger valuation - with significant resultant adverse consequences on IL&FS as no additional finance could be raised by way of equity or debt throughout this period," he added.

    According to Sankaran, the main reason or the problems was capital intensive nature of infrastructure business. "The business model of IL&FS was predicated on refinancing of projects as risks were mitigated and revenues stablished."

    Calling for an independent forensic probe by a foreign agency, Sankaran said the appointment of an overseas agency, possibly from the UK, Israel or Singapore, would help prove that "there was no wrongdoing or mismanagement in the company.

    "Such a course would avoid any hint of a conflict of interest, as over the years, the known experts/consultants having a presence in India or their associates would have done some work for Respondent No. 1 (IL&FS) and its group companies, having regard to the scale and breadth of their operations," he added.

    Last month, the financial services arm of beleaguered infrastructure conglomerate IL&FS had defaulted on interest payments on commercial papers. Earlier, the crippled group defaulted on a short-term loan of Rs 1,000 crore from Sidbi, while a subsidiary has also defaulted Rs 500 crore dues to the development finance institution.

    The IL&FS group has a consolidated debt of Rs 91,000 crore with IL&FS alone having nearly Rs 35,000 crore, IL&FS Financial Services Rs 17,000 crore.

    On October 1, the government had ordered an Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) investigation into the affairs of IL&FS and its subsidiaries. The debt-laden infrastructure financing giant was allegedly paying dividends and huge managerial pay-outs regardless of looming liquidity crisis.

    The Centre had also superseded the board headed by former LIC chairman SB Mathur and replaced it with a seven-member board led by India's richest banker Uday Kotak. This was only the second time after Satyam Computer Services Ltd that the government has taken control of a company board.

Reliance Industries posts highest ever net profit of Rs 9,516 crore in Q2
  • Reliance Industries on Wednesday posted its highest ever net profit at Rs 9,516 crore in Q2 FY 19, up 17.35 per cent  (YoY). Mukesh Ambani-led oil-to-telecom conglomerate posted a 54.5 per cent rise in revenues to Rs 1,56,291 crore in the July-September quarter.

    The company posted record quarterly EBIT for petrochemicals, retail and digital services businesses. The EBIT of retail business jumped 272.5 per cent year-on-year to a record Rs 1,244 crore. However, the refining EBIT was down 19.61 per cent year-on-year. The EBIT of Petchem segment was up 63.7 per cent on a yearly basis to Rs 8,120 crore.

    Reliance Industries' telecom arm, Reliance Jio, reported standalone revenues of Rs 10,942 crore, up 51.7 per cent year-on-year. Jio logged a profit of Rs 681 crore in September quarter, up from Rs 612 crore in June quarter. The EBIT for RIL's digital business grew more than twice to 682.3 per cent.

    Commenting on the Q2 results, RIL Chairman Mukesh Ambani said, "Our Company delivered robust operating and financial results for the quarter despite macro headwinds, with strong growth in earnings on Y-o-Y basis. Our integrated refining and petrochemicals business generated strong cash flows in a period of heightened volatility in commodity and currency markets."

    "The financial performance of both Retail and Jio reflect the benefits of scale, technology and operational efficiencies. Retail business EBITDA has grown three fold on Y-o-Y basis whereas Reliance Jio EBITDA has grown nearly 2.5 times. Jio has now crossed 250 million subscriber milestone and continues to be the largest mobile data carrier in the world," Ambani added.

    Reliance Industries said it will acquire 66 per cent stake in Den Networks for Rs 2,290 crore and 51.3 per cent in Hathway Cable for Rs 2,940 crore. The move is likely to speed up the roll out of Jio GigaFiber by bringing under its fold 27,000 local cable operators who would help strengthen its fibre-based broadband service to households for offering ultra high definition entertainment on large screen TVs.

    RIL will make a "primary investment of Rs 2,045 crore through a preferential issue under SEBI regulations and secondary purchase of Rs 245 crore from the existing promoters for a 66 per cent stake in DEN", the company said in a statement. Also, it will make a primary investment of Rs 2,940 crore through a preferential issue for a 51.3 per cent stake in Hathway.

    RIL would also make open offers to minority shareholders of GTPL Hathway Ltd, a company jointly controlled by Hathway with 37.3 per cent stake, and Hathway Bhawani Cabletel and Datacomm Limited, a subsidiary of Hathway.

    Net subscriber addition for Jio was 37 million in July-September, as against 28.7 million in the previous quarter. The Average Revenue per User (ARPU), however, declined to Rs 131.7 per subscriber per month from Rs 134.5 in April-June.
    RIL said it will make a "primary investment of Rs 2,045 crore through a preferential issue under SEBI regulations and secondary purchase of Rs 245 crore from the existing promoters for a 66 per cent stake in DEN".

    Also, it will make a primary investment of Rs 2,940 crore through a preferential issue for a 51.34 per cent stake in Hathway.

    RIL would also make open offers to minority shareholders of GTPL Hathway Ltd, a company jointly controlled by Hathway with 37.3 per cent stake, and Hathway Bhawani Cabletel and Datacomm Limited, a subsidiary of Hathway, the statement said.

    With telecom continuing to drain investments, Reliance said its outstanding debt rose to Rs 2,58,701 crore as on September 30 as compared to Rs 2,42,116 crore on June 30 and Rs 2,18,763 crore on March 31.

    Cash in hand was marginally declined to Rs 76,740 crore, from Rs 79,492 crore in the previous quarter.

    The operator of world's largest oil refining complex saw pre-tax earnings from the business decline for the second quarter in a row. It fell 19.6 per cent to Rs 5,322 crore as margins dipped. In the first quarter the pre-tax earnings had fallen 16.8 per cent. The gross refining margin for the second quarter came in at $9.50 per barrel against $12 per barrel in the same period last year.

    This it attributed to significantly higher crude price (up 47 per cent over last year) and tight product cracks.

    The pre-tax loss of oil and gas business widened to Rs 480 crore from Rs 272 crore in the second quarter of 2017-18 due to the continued decline in production.

PepsiCo, Reliance Jio, SpiceJet pulled up by ASCI for misleading ads
  • Advertising sector watchdog Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) investigated complaints against 208 advertisements in June, of which 179 were regarding misleading claims including those of Reliance Jio, SpiceJet, PepsiCo India, and Hindustan Unilever, among others. It noted that out of the 208 advertisements, the advertisers promptly ensured corrective action in 63 of them as soon as the complaints were received.

    The consumer complaints council (CCC) of ASCI upheld 89 advertisements from a total of 145 evaluated by them. Amongst the 89 advertisements which it held misleading, 25 belonged to the healthcare category, 27 to education, 15 to food and beverages, five to personal care and 17 were from other categories, it said in a statement.

    ASCI upheld the complaint against two ads by PepsiCo India's Quaker Oats finding them misleading by ambiguity and omission of the direct reference of comparison in the voice over itself. It said that the ads said 'Quaker Oats me hai 2x more protein and fibre' was qualified with a disclaimer 'per serve comparison with cornflakes'. Reference: Atlas of Indian Foods', which was not legible and not as per ASCI guidelines on disclaimers (font size, contrast, hold duration).

    "The advertisement's claim 'two times more protein' was misleading by ambiguity and implication and the commercial under reference contravened ASCI's guidelines for celebrities in advertising," it said. The watchdog pulled up SpiceJet for the visual of a man inserting loose wires into a power socket and getting an electric shock, and also shown repeating this act again, which it termed as an unsafe and a dangerous practice that manifests a disregard for safety and encourages negligence.

    ASCI also considered Hindustan Unilever's Lifebuoy soap advertisement to be misleading by ambiguity and implication. "The television advertisement when seen in totality creates an impression that Lifebuoy is recommended by doctors... In view of the Code of Medical Ethics prohibiting doctors from endorsing any product and in absence of any market research data indicating that medical professionals in general recommend the advertised product, such visual presentation was considered to be misleading by ambiguity and implication," it said.

    It also upheld the complaint against Kraft Heinz India's Complan advertisement claim that 'only one cup of Complan has protein equivalent to one egg and other health drinks provide protein equivalent to half egg only', as they were not substantiated and was considered to be misleading by ambiguity and exaggeration as well as in contravention of the ASCI guidelines on disclaimers.

    The regulator also noted that PepsiCo India's New Tropicana Essentials-Fruits and Veggies advertisement did not provide any supporting evidence to show that Tropicana Essentials was a 'new' product at the time of publishing the advertisement and found the claim to be misleading. ASCI also pulled up Reliance Jio Infocomm advertisement's claims of offering the best network and being the world's largest mobile data network for misleading by ambiguity and implication as they refer to only consumption of data and not the extent and infrastructure of network.

    Similarly, it found Myntra advertisement's claim, 'here's Rs 300 on us', as misleading by ambiguity and omission that the offer is only on select products, and that the offer is subject to terms and conditions. It added that the advertiser did not provide the terms and conditions of the offer nor a link showing the same which would have informed the customer about the conditions.

    The regulator also noted that in's advertisement, the claim offer related to the fare type 'refundable' was misleading by ambiguity regarding the extent and conditions of the refund, and by omission of a qualifier to mention that it is subject to terms and conditions. It also found Rasna's advertisement claim, 'natural fruit energy', was inadequately substantiated and is misleading by ambiguity and implication about the fruit content in the product. "The visual of celebrity Kareena Kapoor when seen in conjunction with the claim is likely to mislead consumers regarding the nature of product benefit and contravened the guidelines for celebrities in advertising," it said.

Sensex loses 382 points as fears over NBFCs' liquidity return, Nifty falls to 10,453
  • Surrendering early gains, the benchmark Sensex on Wednesday fell 383 points to end below the 35,000-mark in highly volatile trade, breaking three sessions of gains as NBFC stocks tanked on fears investors will not roll over their positions in commercial papers issued by them.

    The Sensex swung nearly 880 points both ways on alternate bouts of buying and selling during the session.

    It finally ended 1.09% lower at 34,779 points. The Nifty too ended 131 points or 1.24% lower at 10,453.

    The Sensex had risen nearly 1,161 points in the past three sessions on the back of unabated buying by domestic institutional investors (DIIs) and rebound in global equity markets.

    NBFC stocks cracked with Dewan Housing falling 12.34%, Edelweiss Financial losing 9.99%, L&T Housing Finance (-8.03%) and Mahindra and Mahindra Financial Services (-7.74%) becoming top losers on the BSE midcap index.

    On the Sensex, YES Bank (6.85%) , Adani Ports (5.62%) and Maruti (3.79%) were the top losers.

    ITC (1.34%), Wipro (1.20%) and Infosys (1.16%) were the top Sensex.  gainers

    The Reliance Industries (RIL) stock closed 1.27% or 14.75 points lower at 1148 points on the BSE. In the forex market, the rupee after showing strength in early session to quote at 73.37, was quoting 13 paise down at 73.61 against the dollar (intra-day) too had its shadow on equities.

    Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold shares worth Rs 1,165.63 crore, while domestic institutional investors bought shares to the tune of Rs 1,059.44 crore on Tuesday, as per provisional data available on the BSE.

    Stock exchanges will remain closed tomorrow on account of "Dussehra".

    Global markets

    Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 jumped 1.3 percent to 22,841.12. The Kospi in South Korea advanced 1.0 percent to 2,167.51. The Shanghai Composite rose 0.6 percent to 2,561.61. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gained 1.2 percent to 5,939.10. Shares were flat in Taiwan but rose in Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore. Markets in Hong Kong were closed for a holiday.

    France's CAC 40 added 0.2 percent to 5,183.04 and Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.3 percent to 7,078.53. Germany's DAX shed 0.3 percent to 11,744.76. U.S. shares were set to open lower as the Dow future contract dropped 0.2 percent to 25,744.00. The broader S&P 500 futures lost 0.1 percent to 2,813.80.

Wallet-to-wallet transfer possible only if the account is KYC-compliant
  • In a move aimed to promote digital transactions, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) issued guidelines on Tuesday to enable payments among prepaid instruments (PPI) such as mobile wallets. The RBI also stated that interoperability will be facilitated to KYC-compliant PPI accounts. The guidelines look into ways to achieve interoperability for mobile wallets and cards as well as into customer protection and grievance redressal.

    Interoperability among mobile wallets, bank account and e-wallet will be enabled through Unified Payments Interface (UPI), it said. In its notification, RBI said, "The inter-operability shall be facilitated to all KYC-compliant PPI accounts and entire acceptance infrastructure." For PPIs issued in the form of cards, the cards will be affiliated to the authorised card networks. "PPI issuers operating exclusively in specific segments like Meal, Gift and MTS may also implement interoperability," the RBI said.

    The interoperability will be undertaken in three phases. In the beginning, there will be interoperability of PPIs issued in the form of wallets through UPI, followed by interoperability between wallets and bank accounts through UPI and finally interoperability for PPIs issued in the form of cards through card networks.

    The guidelines also state that PPI issuers must have a board-approved policy for achieving interoperability. Interoperability is the technical compatibility that enables a payment system to be used in conjunction with other payment systems. MobiKwik, Oxigen, Paytm, ItzCash, and Ola Money are some of the popular mobile wallets in the country.

    Currently, a mobile wallet does not allow customers to send or receive money from a wallet run by another company.

    Welcoming the RBI's guidelines, Navin Surya, Chairman, Fintech Convergence Council said this is very progressive move for non-bank players and huge foundations to reach under-banked and unbanked with equally powerful payment product in league of debit/credit cards. "Also now UPI would be accessible to large masses even those who are not banked or are under-banked," he said. Paytm COO Kiran Vasireddy said that it is a great step for the payments ecosystem in India. With these set of guidelines, the PPI ecosystem will become stronger.

General Awareness

    POCSO Act
    • What to study?

      For Prelims: POCSO Act provisions.
      For Mains: Sexual abuse of children- prevention and need for stringent provisions.

      Context: The government has clarified that there is no time bar on reporting crimes related to child sexual abuse. Survivors of child sexual abuse can file a police complaint after they become adults.

      The Ministry of Law, after examining the provisions of POCSO Act vis-à-vis provisions of CrPC, has advised that there appears no period of limitation mentioned in Section 19 in regard to reporting of the offences under the POCSO Act, 2012.

      Legal provisions:

      Section 19 of the POCSO Act, which deals with sexual crimes against children, lays down the procedure for reporting a crime but doesn’t specify a time limit or statute of limitation for reporting it.

      Whereas the CrPC lays down different time-limits for crimes which carry a punishment of up to three years, there is no time bar for crimes that would attract a jail term of more than three years.


      This is an important step for survivors of child abuse, who may try to file a complaint as adults but are turned away at police stations.

      The development assumes significance after considering the fact that on many occasions children are unable to report crimes that they suffered as the perpetrator in many cases happens to be from the family itself or any other known person. Several cases have been reported where the victims have grown up and understood the crime.

      POCSO Act:

      The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO Act) 2012 was formulated in order to effectively address sexual abuse and sexual exploitation of children.

      Role of police: The Act casts the police in the role of child protectors during the investigative process. Thus, the police personnel receiving a report of sexual abuse of a child are given the responsibility of making urgent arrangements for the care and protection of the child, such as obtaining emergency medical treatment for the child and placing the child in a shelter home, and bringing the matter in front of the CWC, should the need arise.

      Safeguards: The Act further makes provisions for avoiding the re-victimisation of the child at the hands of the judicial system. It provides for special courts that conduct the trial in-camera and without revealing the identity of the child, in a manner that is as child-friendly as possible. Hence, the child may have a parent or other trusted person present at the time of testifying and can call for assistance from an interpreter, special educator, or other professional while giving evidence. Above all, the Act stipulates that a case of child sexual abuse must be disposed of within one year from the date the offence is reported.

      Mandatory reporting: The Act also provides for mandatory reporting of sexual offences. This casts a legal duty upon a person who has knowledge that a child has been sexually abused to report the offence; if he fails to do so, he may be punished with six months’ imprisonment and/ or a fine.

      Definitions: The Act defines a child as any person below eighteen years of age. It defines different forms of sexual abuse, including penetrative and non-penetrative assault, as well as sexual harassment and pornography. It deems a sexual assault to be “aggravated” under certain circumstances, such as when the abused child is mentally ill or when the abuse is committed by a person in a position of trust or authority like a family member, police officer, teacher, or doctor.

    No comments:

    Featured post

    Current Affairs - 16 December 2018

    General Affairs   Cyclone Phethai Gathers Over Bay Of Bengal, May Hit Andhra On Monday ...

    Copyright © 2016. Vikalp Education