Editorial Simplified : 10th Day of March 2017
This Series of posts covers the essential Editorial from prominent newspapers. The Editorial from the newspapers are compiled by the Subject Teachers form the Academy and provided in notes format so that the aspirants does not waste their precious time in sifting through the newspapers.
Editorial : Voting with our feet
Robust voter turnouts for recently-held Assembly elections
- The high voter participation belies the far-fetched anxieties over voter fatigue or cynicism
- 7th phase U.P. – turnout estimated to be 60.03%
- 2nd phase Manipur – turnout estimated to be 86%
- Punjab – turnout estimated to be 77.4%
- Goa – turnout estimated to be 83%
- Uttarakhand – turnout estimated to be 65.6%
- In comparison to other mature democracies with their problem of low voting by the young, the so-called millennials(those reaching young adulthood in early 21st century), in India voter enthusiasm cuts across class and age.
- It has also bridged the gender gap, which according to the ECI has come down to 1.46 percentage points from 4.42 in 2009
- Ethnographic studies suggest that the Indian voter perceives voting day to be a special one, with a celebratory camaraderie at the polling booth reflecting a determination to make her vote count.
- With turnouts generally rising as one goes from parliamentary to State to local polls, it is clear that personally felt outcomes matter most to voters.
- The old thumb rule about higher turnout meaning an anti-incumbent vote is a thing of the past. Psephological data are rich with the reasons that motivate a vote, and each verdict must be read separately.
Editorial : Open Gates
The grant of asylum to refugees
- The EU prosecutor argued that governments in EU should issue humanitarian visas to people at risk of torture and degrading treatment, consistent with their obligations under the European charter on human rights.
- The final judgment of the European Court of Justice of the 28-nation bloc overturned the opinion of its prosecutor giving member-states the right to grant or deny asylum
- The Court held that member-states were not obliged to issue visas to people from third countries who had no prior links in Europe.
- Under the Common European Asylum System, as with similar international mechanisms, countries are expected to process asylum requests humanely once refugees arrive.
- A possible consequence of the verdict could be that the mass of migrants who embarked upon those dangerous journeys on the high seas may find no realistic alternative in their attempt to flee conflict zones
- This judgment is also a boost for eurosceptic political parties that have remained steadfast in their opposition and hostility to the surge of refugees
- Given the appeal of anti-immigration political parties in three of the founder-member states of the EU that go to general elections this year, the Netherlands, France and Germany, it’s a great setback for a more orderly and legal immigration system.
- This is the moment when mainstream political parties in Europe should stand up for the so-called European values the continent’s leaders have emphasised since Donald Trump’s ascent to the White House.
The Indian Express
Editorial : Guilty, By Association
G N Saibaba, a DU professor, has been sentenced to life imprisonment for links with Maoists
- The court has charged G.N. Saibaba under sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the IPC for aiding and abetting Naxal activities earlier this week.
- The court upheld the argument that electronic evidence and literature seized from the accused proved they were members of the CPI(Maoist), a banned organisation, and hence liable for prosecution under the UAPA.
- The prosecution argued that CPI(Maoist) was a terrorist organisation and by association the accused was guilty of terrorism
- Such a method of reasoning where guilt is ascribed by association has been rejected by the Supreme Court in Arup Bhuyan vs State of Assam that, “Mere membership of a banned organisation will not incriminate a person unless he resorts to violence or incites people to violence or does an act intended to create disorder or disturbance of public peace by resort to violence.”
- The apex court had laid down a principle that protected the rights of a citizen, including his right to free speech, independent of the actions of an organisation that he is accused or deemed to be a part of.
The Indian Express
Editorial : Small Big Thing
IISc has been ranked eighth in the list of small universities
- IISc provides the only silver lining in an otherwise embarrassing performance by the country’s top educational institutions.
- In 2015, it made it to the list of top 100 engineering universities worldwide and was among the top 30 Asian universities in 2016.
- With less than 3,500 students and a faculty strength of around 400, IISc has a teacher-student ratio of around 1:8 as compared to California Institute of Technology, the best small university according to the Times ranking, which has one teacher for every 6 students.
- The overall faculty-student ratio in the country, 1:27, is a good indicator of the poor performance of Indian universitiesin global surveys.
- Global surveys — and pedagogic principles — recognise that more faculty per student makes for an institution with an engaged and interactive teaching environment.
- IISc’s performance on institutional autonomy is salutary in times when the academic bureaucracy in the country often treats universities like another government department
The India Express
Editorial : Historical Blunder
The official diary for 2017 of the Maharaja Sayajirao University celebrates ancient sages for “developing nuclear technology” and “discovering rockets and aeroplanes”
- Acharya Kanad did formalise an atomic theory, but there was nothing “nuclear” about it.
- Sushruta did describe reconstructive rhinoplasty, but not plastic surgery in general.
- Garga Muni did study the stars, and his work informed that of the great Varahamihira, but their astrological tradition has survived better than their astronomy.
- Indian thinkers did make astonishing contributions to philosophy, from atomism to atheism, and notably to mathematics. But to celebrate their allegedly giant strides in the applied sciences is anachronistic
- We have moved beyond factual errors and have liberated fantastical stories of Indian science from between the lurid covers of pulp and placed them in the mainstream of contemporary thought and academics.
- It is juvenile to marvel at science and mathematics through the lens of nationalism.
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