Uttar Pradesh Recovery of Damage to Public and Private Property Ordinance, 2020
The Uttar Pradesh government has now armed itself with a new law to recover compensation from those who damage public and private property during protests and riots.
- Named as the ‘Uttar Pradesh Recovery of Damage to Public and Private Property Ordinance, 2020’, the law empowers the owner of any private property or the head of the office concerned in respect of public property to file claims for compensation within three months of any incident that causes any damage during public protests, bandhs or riots.
- The claim can cite as respondents those who “exhorted” or “instigated” or “committed” acts that caused the damage, as well as those named by the police.
- Every order or award passed by the Claims Tribunal would be “final” and no appeal would be “maintainable” before any court. Also, no civil court will have the jurisdiction to entertain any question regarding the claims.
- As soon as the order for recovery of damages is passed, the property of the respondent to be attached and the authorities shall be directed to publish the name address along with a photograph of a warning for public at large not to purchase property attached.
- The claims would cover not only damage to public and private property but also the costs borne by the police and the administration in taking preventive measures.
Power and structure of ‘Claims Tribunal’ –
- The chairperson of the Claims Tribunal would be a retired district judge, while its members would be of the rank of additional commissioner.
- The Claims Tribunal would have the power to attach the property of the respondents and publicise their names, addresses and photographs to warn the public against purchasing the property.
- The Claims Tribunal shall have all the powers of a civil court for the purpose of taking evidence on oath and enforcing the attendance of witnesses and compelling the discovery and production of documents and material objects.
- The tribunal will have to adhere to the principles of natural justice, issue notices and receive replies from the respondents, but it also has the power to decide a matter ex parte ,if those given notices do not respond. The pendency of any criminal proceedings relating to the incidents would not be a bar on the tribunals proceeding with their work.
- The tribunal also has the power to appoint a claims commissioner to estimate the damage caused and investigate liability to assist it in holding the inquiry.
Labour Ministry yet to spend 2,053.59 crore of 2019-20 Budget
The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Labour in its report has flagged the under-utilisation of funds by the Union Labour and Employment Ministry, which was yet to spend almost 20% of its 2019-2020 Budget (revised estimate).
- The report noted that utilisation of funds for the National Career Services (NCS) scheme of the Ministry, which facilitates job-seekers, was the worst compared to other schemes.
- While the Pradhan Mantri Rojgar Protsahan Yojana, which gives employers incentives to generate new employment, recorded 100% utilisation compared with the revised estimate, in “most other Schemes, utilisation percentage has been to the extent of 70% and above while NCS recorded a low of 60.88%”.
About National Career Service –
- It is being implemented by Ministry of Labour and Employment (MoLE) since 2015 for linking employment exchanges and other institutions using technology.
- It aims to provide a variety of employment related services like job postings, career counselling, vocational guidance, skill courses, apprenticeship, etc.
- These services are available online on the National Career Service Portal accessible to both employers as well as job seekers.
- Under the NCS Project 100 Model Career Centres (MCCs) are being established in collaboration with States and other institutions to deliver employment services.
About Pradhan Mantri Rojgar Protsahan Yojana –
- The scheme “Pradhan Mantri Rojgar Protsahan Yojana” (PMRPY) was announced in the Budget for 2016-17.
- The objective of the scheme is to promote employment generation.
- The scheme is being implemented by the Ministry of Labour and Employment.
- Under the scheme employers would be provided an incentive for enhancing employment by reimbursement of the 8.33% EPS contribution made by the employer in respect of new employment.
- The PMRPY scheme is targeted for workers earning wages up to Rs. 15,000/- per month.
BRO clearing snow at Zojila pass to open 434-km Srinagar-Let highway
The Border Road Organization (BRO) clearing snow at the Zozila Pass to open the 434 km Srinagar-Leh highway. Ladakh remains cut off from the rest of the country from November to April because of heavy snowfall.
About Border Road Organisation –
- Functioning under the control of the Ministry of Defence since 2015 (earlier functioning under the Ministry of Road, Transports and Highways).
- The BRO is engaged in road construction to provide connectivity to difficult and inaccessible regions in the border areas of the country.
- It is staffed by officers and troops drawn from the Indian Army’s Corps of Engineers, Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, Army Service Corps, Military Police and army personnel on extra regimental employment.
- Engineering Service and personnel from the General Reserve Engineer Force (GREF) form the parent cadre of the Border Roads Organisation.
- Currently, the organisation maintains operations in twenty-one states, one UT (Andaman and Nicobar Islands), and neighbouring countries such as Afghanistan, Bhutan, Myanmar, and Sri Lanka.
About Zojila Pass –
- Zozila pass is situated at an altitude of 11,578 feet on Srinagar-Kargil-Leh National Highway which remains closed during winters (December to April) due to heavy snowfall and avalanches cutting off Leh-Ladakh region from Kashmir.
- The Union Cabinet has approved the construction of Asia’s longest bi-directional Zojila Pass tunnel, a 14.2-km long tunnel project in Jammu and Kashmir to provide all-weather connectivity between Srinagar, Kargil and Leh.
2000 pilgrims set out to reach the island of Kachchatheevu for the famous Church festival.
Facts about island –
- It is an uninhabited off-shore island in the Palk Strait.
- It was originally owned by a king of Ramnad (present-day Ramanathapuram, Tamil Nadu) and later became part of the Madras presidency after the delimitation of Gulf of Mannar and Palk Strait during British rule between the then governments of Madras and Ceylon.
- In 1974, the island was ceded to Sri Lanka through the Indo-Sri Lankan Maritime agreement to settle the maritime boundary in the Palk Strait.
- But in 1976, another agreement was finalised to determine the boundary in the Gulf of Mannar and Bay of Bengal and restricted both the countries’ fishermen from fishing in the others’ waters.