October 2019

Daily Current Affairs (22-10-19)

CRIME IN INDIA REPORT 2017

Related Topics: Law & Order, Reports & Indices

News

The Annual Crime in India Report 2017 was published by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) after a delay of two years.

About the 2017 Crime Report

  • The NCRB, under the Union Ministry of Home Affairs, is responsible for collecting and analysing crime data as defined by the Indian Penal Code and special and local laws in the country.
  • The 2017 report included several new crime heads under the IPC, including abetment, criminal intimidation, simple hurt, credit/debit card fraud, missing children deemed as kidnapped, kidnapping and abduction for begging, etc.
  • Greater detailing was ensured with respect to the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and the Prevention of Corruption Act.
  • Data was also collected now under the Chit Fund Act, the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act, the Food Safety and Standards Act and the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA).
  • Socio-economic causative factors or reasons of crimes have not been captured by the bureau; only police-recorded cases have been published.

Key Highlights

Crime against Women

  • 3, 59,849 cases of crime against women were reported in the country.
  • Uttar Pradesh topped the list with 56,011 cases followed by Maharashtra with 31,979 cases and West Bengal with 30,992.
  • Majority of cases under crimes against women were registered under ‘Cruelty by Husband or his Relatives’ (27.9%) followed by ‘Assault on Women with Intent to Outrage her Modesty (21.7%), Kidnapping & Abduction of Women (20.5%) and ‘Rape’ (7.0%).
  • The conviction rate for crimes against women (cases convicted as percentage of total cases where trial was completed) was 24.5% in India in the year 2017.

Incidents of Rioting

  • 58,880 incidents of rioting were reported in the country.
  • Maximum incidents were reported from Bihar11,698, followed by Uttar Pradesh8,990 and Maharashtra7,743.
  • Of the total riots reported, communal and sectarian riots accounted for 723 and 183 incidents respectively.
  • There were 805 riots due to caste conflict and 1909 riots occurred due to political reasons.

Crime against SC/ST

  • The incidents registered under the Scheduled Caste Prevention of Atrocities Act saw an increase from 5,082 incidents reported in 2016 to 5,775 in 2017.
  • Incidents of crime related to Scheduled Tribes dipped from 844 in 2016 to 720 in 2017.

Kidnapping and Abduction

A total of 95,893 cases of kidnapping and abduction were registered during 2017, showing an increase of 9.0% over 2016 (88,008 cases).

Missing Children

  • A total of 63,349 children (20,555 male, 42,691 female and 103 transgender) were reported missing in 2017.
  • During the year 2017, a total of 70,440 children (23,564 males, 46,798 females and 78 transgender) were recovered / traced.

Offences against the State

  • The number of offences against the state was 9,013 in 2017, compared to 6,040 in 2015 and 6,986 in 2016.
  • The number of sedition cases in 2017 was 51.
  • Sedition as a separate category was not given in the 2016 report.
  • The number of cases under the Official Secrets Act has come down from 30 to 18 between 2016 and 2017.

Economic Offences

Out of three specified category of economic offences, forgery, cheating and fraud accounted for maximum cases, with 1,27,430 cases, followed by criminal breach of trust (20,371 cases) and counterfeiting (1,171 cases) during 2017.

Cyber Crimes

During 2017, 56.0% of cyber-crime cases registered were for the motive of fraud (12,213 out of 21,796 cases) followed by sexual exploitation with 6.7% (1,460 cases) and causing disrepute with 4.6% (1,002 cases).

Fake News

  • The NCRB for the first time collected data on circulation of “false/fake news and rumours.”
  • Under the category, maximum incidents were reported from Madhya Pradesh (138), Uttar Pradesh (32) and Kerala (18).

Way Forward

  • National Crime Records Bureau data for 2017 on two important aspects, violent crime and crime against women, should prompt State governments to make a serious study of the underlying causes.
  • State governments should implement the orders of the Supreme Court on police reforms issued in 2006 in letter and spirit.
  • As a measure of data improvement, NCRB must record not just the principal offence in a case, but list all cognisable offences separately.
[Source: The Hindu, Hindustan Times]

 

EDAKKAL CAVES

Related Topics: Art & Culture, Petroglyphs

Context

The Neolithic petroglyphs on the walls of Edakkal caves on the Ambukuthi hills in Wayanad district, Kerala are still awaiting protection from the threats of illegal constructions, mining, and urbanisation.

Edakkal Caves

  • They lie 1,200 m (3,900 ft) above sea level on Ambukutty Hills and are among the oldest human settlements ever discovered.
  • Inside the caves are pictorial writings believed to date to at least 6,000 BCE, from the Neolithic man, indicating the presence of a prehistoric civilization or settlement in this region.
  • The diversity of the engravings suggests that the Edakkal caves were inhabited several times at different points in history.
  • The oldest among them date back to 6000 B.C, to the age of Stone Age man.
  • The Muniyaras, or ancient burial sites that have been discovered in these hills have yielded a rich collection of ancient earthenware and pottery.

Name

  • Despite their name, the Edakkal Caves are not actually caves.
  • They are part of a pre historic rock shelter, formed naturally when one huge boulder got wedged between two bigger ones.
  • The name Edakkal itself means “a stone in between”.

Threats

  • The mushrooming of resorts on the hills by drastically altering the topography and rampant mining activities are the major threats being faced by the Edakkal caves.
  • The government had banned all types of construction on the premises of the caves to conserve the Neolithic engravings.
  • But illegal quarrying using explosives and construction of resorts have been going on without restraint.
  • The activities are posing a serious threat to the rock shelters and hundreds of families residing on the hill slopes.
  • Two huge water tanks, with a capacity of more than 1,000 litres, are being set up on the hill for resorts.
  • They pose a serious threat to the residents of a tribal settlement on the slopes of the hill.

UNESCO directive

  • A workshop held for conserving Edakkal petroglyphs in 2013, as part of securing World Heritage Monument status by the UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) for the monument, had discussed potential threats to the rock carvings, including unrestricted construction and mining activities in the area and scientific measures to conserve the monument.
  • Though the workshop handed over its recommendations to the authorities, no action had been taken.

[Source: The Hindu, wayanad.gov]

 

LIDAR (LIGHT DETECTION AND RANGING)

Related Topics: Science & Technology,

News

  • Union Ministry of Defence has approved LiDAR, an aerial remote sensing survey method, for carrying out the survey for the 45-km semi-high-speed railway line from Thiruvananthapuram to Kasaragod.
  • The clearance had been given by the Ministry subject to strict compliance to the standard stipulations/conditions and with several additional conditions.

What is LiDAR?

  • It is a remote sensing method that uses light in the form of a pulsed laser to measure ranges (variable distances) to the Earth.
  • These light pulses—combined with other data recorded by the airborne system— generate precise, three-dimensional information about the shape of the Earth and its surface characteristics.
  • It is a surveying technology that measures distance by illuminating a target with a laser light.
  • It is sometimes simply referred to as 3D scanning or laser scanning with terrestrial, airborne and mobile applications.

Components

A LIDAR instrument principally consists of a laser, a scanner, and a specialized GPS receiver.

Types

  • Two types of LIDAR are topographic and bathymetric.
  • Topographic LIDAR typically uses a near-infrared laser to map the land, while bathymetric LIDAR uses water-penetrating green light to also measure seafloor and riverbed elevations.

Why LiDAR?

  • LIDAR systems allow scientists and mapping professionals to examine both natural and manmade environments with accuracy, precision, and flexibility.
  • It can also be used to produce more accurate shoreline maps, make digital elevation models for use in geographic information systems, to assist in emergency response operations, and in many other applications.

[Source: The Hindu, oceanservice.noaa.gov]

 

FACTS OF THE DAY

RULES TO REGULATE SOCIAL MEDIA INTERMEDIARIES

Union Ministry of Information Technology has said in an affidavit submitted in the Supreme Court that rules to regulate social media intermediaries needed to be revised, considering the “ever-growing threats to individual rights and the nation’s integrity, sovereignty, and security.” The Ministry has informed the court that the new Information Technology Intermediaries Guidelines (Amendment) Rules would be notified by January 15, 2020. The affidavit was in response to a September 24, 2019 order of the court to appraise it of the status of framing of the new rules and the timeline for their notification.

MAPATHON KERALAM PROJECT

The Kerala State IT Mission is set to launch the ambitious Mapathon Keralam project, a crowd-sourcing mapping initiative, which aims at creating micro-level maps of the entire State for identifying all natural and physical assets that will help effectively address the problem of recurrent natural calamity situations. Through Mapathon Keralam, the government seeks to create extensive local maps of the State covering every nook and cranny. It will encompass the entire spectrum of details, including physical infrastructure, natural resources and other useful information, for planning and implementing flood control and rehabilitation activities. The project is led by the Kerala State Spatial Data Infrastructure (KSDI) under the Kerala State IT Mission and supported by institutions such as the International Centre for Free and Open Source Software (ICFOSS) and National Service Scheme (NSS). The free online map, titled Open Street Map, is used for this mapping project as part of the government’s policy of strengthening activities focussed on free knowledge and Free and Open Source Software. The maps are to be created online with public participation, and anyone with a computer/mobile phone and an Internet connection can participate in Mapathon Keralam. With this kind of mapping, locals can identify and mark all the features of their locality, since such information will be highly accurate.

PROJECT FOR EARLY DETECTION OF SPONDYLITIS

The Kerala Social Security Mission (KSSM) under the Social Justice Department has prepared a project for early intervention to prevent disability owing to ankylosing spondylitis. Ankylosing spondylitis is an inflammatory condition belonging to the group spondyloarthritis that predominantly affects the spine. If left untreated, the inflammation results in fusion of the vertebrae and damage to joints, resulting in impaired mobility, ultimately leading to a person becoming bedridden. It is estimated that there are nearly 5,000 people with ankylosing spondylitis in Kerala. The first among the project’s objectives is creation of awareness for early identification of the disease. As correct diagnosis is essential, awareness programmes among health-care professionals for early detection and intervention are planned by the KSSM. The project aims at interventions before the condition of people with ankylosing spondylitis worsens and leads to disability. A software-based online registration of those suffering from ankylosing spondylitis will be facilitated. This will help in getting an idea of the number of people having ankylosing spondylitis in the State.

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