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Last Updated: August 11, 2019

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  • President approved the NMC Bill

    August 11, 2019
    President Ram Nath Kovind gave assent to the National Medical Commission Bill 2019. The Bill will replace the Medical Council of India (MCI), which was functional as per the Indian Medical Council (IMC) Act, 1956.  NMC Bill 2019: The National Medical Commission (NMC) will form the apex regulatory body for medical education in India. The commission will ensure the quality of the medical colleges and every institute will now be rated. One of the provisions of the bill included the appointment of the Board of Governors to perform the functions.

    RS passed the Public Premises Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants Amendment Bill

    August 8, 2019
    Rajya Sabha passed the Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Amendment Bill, 2019 on 6 August. The Bill which amends the Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Act, 1971 was introduced by the Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs, Mr. Hardeep Singh Puri. He presented it in Lok Sabha on July 8, 2019. Provisions of the Bill: Residential accommodation: The Bill says that for residential accommodation the license must be given for a fixed tenure, or for the period the person holds office. Notice for eviction: It empowers the central, state or union territory government, or a statutory authority to make rules for the occupation. It says the notice of eviction should be issued by an estate officer. The person (Unauthorised Occupant) will be given three working days to show cause of why an eviction order should not be made against him. Order of eviction: The order of eviction will be issued by the estate officer after considering the cause shown, and making any other inquiries. It the person opposes to comply with the order, the officer can use force to evict the person. Payment of damages: If the person in unauthorised occupation of the residential accommodation challenges the eviction order passed by the estate officer in court, he will be required to pay damages for every month of such occupation.

    RS passed the National Institute of Design Amendment Bill

    August 8, 2019
    Rajya Sabha passed the National Institute of Design (Amendment) Bill, 2019. It was introduced by Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal. The Bill sought to amend the National Institute of Design Act, 2014. Provisions of the Bill: ♦ The Bill declares four National Institutes of Design, from states namely Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Assam, and Haryana, as institutions of national importance.  ♦ These institutes were registered as Societies under the Societies Registration Act, 1860. These institutes do not have the power to grant degrees or diplomas. As the four institutes are now declared institutions of national importance, the institutes will be allowed to grant degrees and diplomas. ♦ The institutes will become socially inclusive and address the needs of design in various sectors including agriculture, health care, and transportation.

    RS passed the SC Number of Judges Amendment Bill

    August 8, 2019
    Rajya Sabha passed the Supreme Court (Number of Judges) Amendment Bill, 2019. The Bill seeks to increase the number of Supreme Court judges from 30 to 33, excluding the Chief Justice of India (CJI). The move is to reduce the pendency of cases which touched 59,696.  The Bill was passed by Lok Sabha on 5th August. The SC (Number of Judges) Amendment Bill was introduced by Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad.  The total expenditure estimated to create additional three posts of Judges, including their staff, housing, water, electricity, medical and conveyance among others, in the Supreme Court will be of Rs.6.81 crore per annum.   Indian Constitution says the strength of the Supreme Court is fixed by the Parliament. The Strength of the SC judges can be increased by way of parliamentary legislation.

    President Ram Nath Kovind gives assent to the abrogation of article 370 of Jammu and Kashmir

    August 7, 2019
    President Ram Nath Kovind gave his assent to the abrogation of Article 370. It will now revoke the special status to Jammu and Kashmir. The resolution to revoke Article 370 was passed by Lok Sabha on 6 August. It was passed by Rajya Sabha on 5th August. The notice issued by the President said that as from 6th August, 2019, all clauses mentioned in Article 370. President's approval notification: President approved the Bill in exercise of the power conferred by clause (3) of article 370 read with (1) of article 370 of the Constitution of India. The notification also said that all provisions of this Constitution, as amended from time to time, without any modifications or exceptions, shall apply to the State of J&K. It will not notwithstand anything contrary contained in article 152 or article 308 or any other article of the Constitution or any other provision of the Constitution of J&K or any law, document, judgement, ordinance, order, by-law, rule, or agreement as envisaged under article 363 or otherwise.

    President gives assent to the AERA Amendment Bill

    August 7, 2019
    President Ram Nath Kovind approved the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (AERA) (Amendment) Bill, 2019. The Bill was passed by Rajya Sabha on 2nd August and by the Lok Sabha on 16th July 2019. Aim: The Bill sought to raise the threshold for major airport and inturn to reduce the tariff-fixing power of airport regulator to fewer airports.  Provisions of the Bill: ♦ The Bill increased the threshold of annual passenger traffic for major airports to over 35 lakh.  ♦ As per the Bill, AERA can no more determine the tariff, tariff structures, or development fees, in certain cases where the tariff amounts were a part of the bid document on the basis of which the operations of the airport were awarded. AERA will consult with the concessioning authority of the Ministry of Civil Aviation before incorporating such tariffs in the bid document, and such tariffs must be notified. Note: Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India Act, 2008 defines Major Airport as an airport with annual passenger traffic above 15 lakh. Cons of the Bill: Bidding system and privatisation of the airports and  would impact the growth rate of the sector, which is growing at around 10%. The Bill will make the air ticket costlier which inturn will affect the government's target to take the air travel to the common man. History: The AERA (Amendment) Bill was approved by the Cabinet in December 2017 but got lapsed as it could not be passed in last year’s Monsoon Session as the first tenure of Modi government ended. In the second term of the NDA government,the Cabinet approved the Bill on June 24.

    Rajasthan passes bill against honour killing

    August 7, 2019
    Rajasthan State Legislative Assembly passed the Rajasthan Prohibition of Interference with the Freedom of Matrimonial Alliances in the Name of Honour and Tradition Bill, 2019 on 5th August. The Bill was introduced by the Parliamentary Affairs Minister Shanti Dhariwal. The Bill aims to curb incidents of honour killing in the State. Provisions of the Bill: ♦ The Bill provides punishment of life imprisonment or death penalty for murdering couples in the name of family honour ♦ If the community or family cause death of a couple or either of them, on the grounds of dishonour or disrepute to the caste, community or family will be punished with death or life imprisonment and a penalty of maximum Rs.5 Lakh ♦ If the couple is grievously hurt, the community or the family will be punished with 10 years of rigorous imprisonment for life with a penalty of maximum Rs.3 lakh ♦ Incase of simple injuries, the community or the family will be punished with 3-5 years of imprisonment with a penalty of maximum Rs.2 lakh ♦ The Bill also said that the District or Sub Divisional Magistrate shall receive information or request from any person who seeks protection from any unlawful assembly or person who objects lawful marriage ♦ The Bill also says that a group can not assemble with an intention to  condemn any lawful marriage in the name of vindicating the honour of family, caste or community. Participating in such groups directly or indirectly will be punished with maximum 5 years of imprisonment and a penalty of maximum Rs.1 lakh

    Lok Sabha gives nod to legislation that bans commercial surrogacy

    August 6, 2019
    Lok Sabha passed the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2019, which seeks to ban commercial surrogacy and allows only close relatives of infertile couples to volunteer for “ethical altruistic" reasons. The bill and it is unfortunate that the country had emerged as a hub of commercial surrogacy in recent years. During the discussion on the bill.There are 2,000-3000 surrogacy clinics running illegally in India and a few thousand foreign couples resort to surrogacy practice within India, and the whole issue is thoroughly unregulated. The concerning unethical practices, abandonment of children born out of surrogacy and exploitation of surrogate mothers.The minister cited the 228th report of the Law Commission recommended that the government enact a legislation to ensure that commercial surrogacy is banned in this country and there is only restrictive surrogacy. Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2019,  The bill also aims to constitute surrogacy boards at the national and state levels. The bill aims to allow ethical altruistic surrogacy for infertile Indian married couples, within the age group of 23-50 and 26-55 years for females and males, respectively. The bill, which was passed by a voice vote, also prohibits the sale and purchase of human embryos and gametes. The government has claimed that it will also prevent exploitation of surrogate mothers and children born through surrogacy.India emerged as a commercial destination for foreigners seeking surrogate mothers. There have been reports on unethical practices, exploitation of surrogate mothers, abandonment of children born out of surrogacy, and rackets involving intermediaries importing human embryos and gametes.Women’s rights activists have supported the passage of the bill.

    Rajasthan passed bill against anti lynching

    August 6, 2019
    The Rajasthan State Legislative Assembly passed the Rajasthan Protection from Lynching Bill, 2019. The Parliamentary Affairs Minister Shanti Dhariwal introduced the Bill in the State Assembly. The Bill aims to provide stricter punishment to curb such Lynching incidents. Rajasthan is now the second State to have a dedicated law criminalising mob lynching as a special offence. The first state to have such law in addition to other offences under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) is Manipur. SC's recommendation: The Bill was introduced after the recommendation by the Supreme Court in authorising the setting up of special courts, appointment of a dedicated nodal officer, and stipulating enhanced punishments. The bill not only criminalises the acts of lynching but also provides legal aid, relief, compensation and rehabilitation.  Definition of Lynching as per the Bill: Any act or series of acts of violence whether spontaneous or planned, by a mob on the grounds of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth, language, dietary practices, sexual orientation, political affiliation and ethnicity falls under the category Lynching. Provisions of the Bill: ♦ Bill makes the Mob Lynching offence cognizable, non-bailable and non-compoundable offences. ♦ It gives a punishment of life imprisonment and a penalty from Rs.1 lakh to Rs.5 lakh to those convicted in cases of mob lynching leading to victim's death. ♦ After 2014, 86% of mob lynching cases that were reported in the country are from Rajasthan. The Bill was proposed after considering peace in the state.

    RS passed Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill

    August 6, 2019
    The Rajya Sabha cleared the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill 2019 on 6 August. Union Home Minister Amit Shah presented the Bill after abrogation of the special status granted to J&K. The upper house also adopted resolutions to repeal Article 370 and Article 35A in J&K. The Bill has been moved for consideration and passage in Lok Sabha on August 6, 2019. The lower house will also take up the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation Bill 2019. Provisions of the Bill: ♦ The Bill proposed the bifurcation of the state of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories namely Ladakh and Jammu-Kashmir. ♦ The bill has a  provision of 10% reservation for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) among the general category (the upper caste).

    Lok Sabha passed the 2019 Transgender Persons Protection of Rights Bill

    August 6, 2019
    The Lok Sabha passed the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill 2019 on 5 August. The Bill aims to empower and safeguard the rights of transgenders. Provisions of the Bill: ♦ The Bill establishes a national security authority to safegaurd the rights of the transgenders ♦ It will provide a mechanism for social, economic and educational empowerment of transgenders ♦ As per the Bill, irrespective of sex reassignment surgery and hormonal therapy, a person would have the right to choose to be identified as a man, woman or transgender ♦ The Bill requires a transgender person to go through a district magistrate and district screening committee to get certified as a transperson ♦ It removes the provision that criminalised begging by transgender people. This provision was part of the Bill when it was introduced ♦ It will benefit the transgender people who are discriminated and abused against the marginalised section of the society ♦ It prohibits discrimination against a transgender person in the field of education, employment and healthcare

    Lok Sabha passed the Surrogacy Regulation Bill

    August 6, 2019
    The Lok Sabha passed the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2019 on 5 August 2019. The Bill aims to ban commercial surrogacy in the country. It was introduced by Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan. Provisions of the Bill: ♦ The Bill regulates altruistic surrogacy  and ends the exploitation of women who are lending their womb for surrogacy ♦ It provides provisions to protect the rights of children born through surrogacy ♦ The Bill allows only altruistic surrogacy by infertile Indian couples, who are legally married for at least 5 years and within the age group of 23-50 and 26-55 years for females and males, from a close relative. It prohibits foreigners, Non-resident Indians (NRI) Person of Indian Origins (PIO) from commissioning surrogacy.  Note: In Altruistic surrogacy the women does not receive monetary compensation except the medical expenses and insurance coverage for the surrogate mother. ♦ This bill looks after the interests of the couple that opt for surrogacy and ensures that there are laws protecting them against exploitation by clinics that are carrying this out as a business ♦ Surrogacy can not be applicable to singles, homosexuals and live-in couples ♦ The Bill will establish National and State Surrogacy Boards, the appointment of appropriate authorities for the regulation of the practice and process of surrogacy  Surrogacy: Surrogacy is a legal arrangement where a woman agrees to become pregnant, by artificial insemination, and give birth to a child for another person(s)/infertile couple who is or will become the parent(s) of the child. Commercial surrogacy includes a monetary benefit or reward (in cash or kind) that exceeds basic medical expenses and insurance for the surrogate mother. The Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill 2019 bans this type of surrogacy.

    Lok Sabha Passes bill to increase the number of SC judges

    August 6, 2019
    Lok Sabha passed a bill the main aim is to increase the number of Supreme Court judges from the present 30 to 33 with a view to reducing pendency of cases.  Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad used the opportunity to urge the judiciary against making "sweeping commentary". About Bill A bill to bar judges from making "sweeping remarks" against another constitutional authority was brought by the previous UPA government. The following the dissolution of the 15th Lok Sabha.The members over differences the Supreme Court Judges. A Constitutional Amendment bill brought by the UPA government to increase the retirement age of High Court Judges from 62 to 65 lapsed and it never came up for discussion in the 15th Lok Sabha.The Supreme Court striking down the National Judicial Appointments law.The minister urged the judiciary to expedite the process of filling vacancies in the subordinate judiciary. The Supreme Court has a sanctioned strength of 30 judges, plus the chief justice of India 31 judges. Once the bill gets parliamentary approval, its sanctioned strength will go up to 33 plus the CJI. Through the National Judicial Appointments Commission, the government sought to have a bigger say in the appointment of Supreme Court and High Court Judges.

    Centre moves J&K Reorganisation Bill 2019, a resolution to revoke Article 370 of Jammu and Kashmir

    August 5, 2019
    The Government of India announced repealing Article 370 and introduced the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, 2019 in the Rajya Sabha on 5 August.  This will now repeal special status to Jammu and Kashmir. The resolutoin was passed by Home Minister Amit Shah in the upper house. The aborgation of Article 370 will make J&K an integral part of India.  What is Article 370? Article 370 was introduced in 1947 by Sheikh Abdullah the Prime Minister of Jammu & Kashmir Article 370 of the Indian constitution gives autonomous status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir. The article is drafted as Temporary, Transitional and Special Provisions in Part XXI of the Constitution. The Indian Constitution still describes it as a temporary provision. Article 370 provided six special provisions for Jammu and Kashmir: 1) The State is allowed to have its own Constitution. 2) The Central legislative powers over the State were limited to the three subjects of defence, foreign affairs and communications. 3) Only with the concurrence of the State Government, other constitutional powers of Indian Government could be extended to the State. 4) The concurrence was only provisional. The State's Constituent Assembly should ratify the provision. 5) Until the State Constituent Assembly was formed, the State Government was given authority to give concurrence. Once the State Constituent Assembly finalised the scheme of powers and dispersed, no further extension of powers was possible. 6) Only if the State's Constituent Assembly approves the Article 370, it could be repealed or amended. Under Article 370, the Centre has no power to declare financial emergency under Article 360 in the state. It can declare an emergency in the state only in case of war or external aggression. What's next? After the repealing of Article 370, the government should get back the Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK). It is now expected that the Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan would return the land taken illegally from India.

    RS passed the Repealing and Amending Bill

    August 5, 2019
    Rajya Sabha passed the Repealing and Amending Bill, 2019. The bill will repeal redundant and absolute laws. The Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha on 29 July.  Aim: The Bill aims to ensure minimum legislation and maximum governance as it is a continuous process. It will repeal 58 old central laws that has been used to achieve maximum governance. A committee constituted by the government has identified 1824 old laws. Previously 1,428 old and archaic central Acts and about 75 laws have been repealed till date.  The Bill will make amendments to two Acts that are related to the substitution of certain words in the Income Tax Act, 1961 and the Indian Institutes of Management Act, 2017. Acts to be repealed: The Bill will repeals various Acts, such as the Beedi Workers Welfare Fund Act, 1976, the Tea (Amendment) Act, 1980, the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2001, the Central Road Fund (Amendment) Act, 2007, and the Central Universities Act, 2009.

    LS passed Jallianwala Bagh National Memorial Amendment Bill

    August 5, 2019
    Lok Sabha, the lower house, cleared the Jallianwala Bagh National Memorial (Amendment) Bill, 2019. The amendment will remove the position of Congress president as a permanent member of a trust that runs the Jallianwala Bagh National Memorial. The Bill was passed with 214 in favour and 30 against it. After the removal of the Congress chief as a member, the leader of the single largest Opposition party in the Lok Sabha will be added as a member of the trust. The amendment bill empowers the central government to terminate the term of a nominated trustee even before the expiry of the tenure without assigning any reason. Jallianwala Bagh Memorial: Jallianwala Bagh memorial was established in 1951. The memorial was established to mark the massacre of unarmed people on April 13, 1919 at the public garden in Amritsar. The massacre was ordered by the British Indian Army under the command of Col Reginald Dyer.

    LS passed the 2019 Dam Safety Bill

    August 3, 2019
    The Lok Sabha passed the Dam Safety Bill, 2019. The Bill aims to provide an uniform safety procedures for the specified 5,600 dams in the country. It will also enhance the security of citizens. The introduction of the Bill will not take away the rights of the States.  The Bill was introduced in 2010. It was opposed in various edition in the State and has never been successfully passed until now. Provisions of the Bill: The bill stressed the establishment of the National Dam Safety Authority as a regulatory body. The regulator will implement the policy, guidelines, and standards on dam safety in the country. It also entails the setting up of State committee on dam safety and State Dam Safety Organisation. It will be manned by officers from the field dam safety.  The Bill will set up a national committee on dam safety. It will be set up to introduce safety policies and recommend necessary regulations. Steps taken by Centre for Dam safety: As several dams does not have the emergency action plan, the government has provide safety measures to around 180 dams.  For example, Centre has alloted Rs.600 crore to repair the gates of Hirakud dam. Centre has also taken efforts to change the gates of Farakka barrage. 80% of the work had been completed so far.

    RS passed UAPA Bill

    August 3, 2019
    The Rajya Sabha passed the contentious the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill, 2019. The Bill was passed with 104 votes against it as compared to 85 in its favour. The Bill was passed by Lok Sabha on 24 July.  Provisions of the Bill: The anti-terror law will now empower the Centre and state to designate individuals as terrorists and seize his properties. If any person commits or participates in acts of terrorism or involved in terrorist, he/she can be designated as terrorist.  It also facilitates power to the Director-General of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to grant approval of seizure or attachment of property when the case is investigated by the agency.

    RS passed the Motor Vehicles Amendment Bill

    August 2, 2019
    Rajya Sabha passed the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill, 2019 with 108 votes in favour and 13 against it. The amendment aims to improve road safety, enhance the penalty for traffic violations, facilitate citizens in dealing with transport departments and curb corruption. The Bill was passed in Lok Sabha on 23 July. The Bill was introduced in the upper house by Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari. The move comes as an initiative to stop millions of deaths due to road accidents. Provisions of the Amendment: ♦ The amendment proposed to increase the minimum penalty for a general violation from Rs.100 to Rs.500.  ♦ Driving without a licence will lead to a a fine of Rs.5,000. Earlier, it was Rs.500  ♦ Driving despite disqualification will cause a penalty of Rs.10,000 from the current Rs.500.  ♦ For drunken driving, the monetary punishment has been increased to Rs.10,000 from Rs.2,000. ♦ It also includes a provision for cashless treatment of road accident victims during the golden hour. ♦ In case of any defect in the vehicle that can cause damage to the environment, driver or other road users the Bill facilitates the Centre to order the recall of motor vehicles.  ♦ It provides a computerised driving test to eliminate acquisition of fake driving licences.

    Lok Sabha Clears Bill For Speedy Eviction Of Illegal Occupants From Government Houses

    August 1, 2019
    Lok Sabha passed a bill which seeks to crack down on unauthorized occupants of government residential accommodations. Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Amendment Bill 2019 Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs proposed amendments would enable the estate officer to apply summary proceedings for eviction unauthorized occupants from residential accommodations and to levy damage charges for accommodation held during the period of litigation. The bill was passed by the Lower House. There is 15,416 residential accommodation under the government quota. The proposed amendments would enable the estate officer to apply summary proceedings for eviction unauthorized occupants from residential accommodations and to levy damage charges for accommodation held during the period of litigation.   Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Amendment Bill 2019 - History Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Amendment Bill 2019 introduced by the Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs Mr. Hardeep Singh Puri, in Lok Sabha on July 8, 2019. The Bill amends the Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Act, 1971.  The Act provides for the eviction of unauthorized occupants from public premises in certain cases.  The Bill defines ‘residential accommodation occupation’ as the occupation of public premises by a person for such an occupation.  The license must be given for a fixed tenure for the period the person holds office.   The Bill adds a provision laying down the procedure for eviction from residential accommodation.  It requires an estate officer (an officer of the central government) to issue a written notice to a person if he is in unauthorized occupation of residential accommodation.  The person fails to comply with the order, the estate officer may evict such person from the residential accommodation, and take possession of it.

    Rajya Sabha passed the triple talaq Muslim Women Protection of Rights on Marriage Bill

    July 31, 2019
    The Rajya Sabha passed the triple talaq Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019. The bill makes the declaration of triple talaq means the police can arrest an accused without a warrant. It is the government's attempt to protect the rights of married Muslim women. Provisions of the Bill: The Bill makes the instant triple talaq a criminal offence. It provides a jail term to a Muslim man for the crime that prohibits divorce by pronouncing talaq thrice in one go. If the woman misuses the law, the man should have the right to appeal.

    Rajya Sabha passed the IBC amendment Bill

    July 31, 2019
    The Rajya Sabha approved the amendments to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC). Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill, 2019 provides clarity about preference to secured lenders over operational creditors.  Provisions of the amendments: The amendments gives a loan defaulting company explicit authority over the distribution of proceeds of an auction in the resolution process. With reference to the IBC, it has fixed a firm timeline of 330 days for resolving cases.

    Rajya Sabha passed the Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Bill

    July 31, 2019
    The Rajya Sabha has passed the Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Bill, 2019. The Bill aims to introduce a mechanism that will curb the ponzi schemes. It will protect the interest of depositors. The Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha on July 24, 2019. The Bill will now replaced the Ordinance promulgated on February 21, 2019. Provisions of the Bill: The bill curb the menace of illicit deposit-taking activities in the country. It provides strict administrative measures to dupe gullible people of their hard-earned savings. Under the Bill, the centre and state is allowed to frame rules accordingly. The Bill ensures to protect the genuine businesses or individuals who borrow money from their relatives or friends for personal reasons or to tide over a crisis. Ponzi scheme: Ponzi scheme is a form of fraud which attract the investors and pays profits to earlier investors by using funds obtained from more recent investors.

    Lok Sabha passed the 2019 Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill

    July 26, 2019
    Lok Sabha passed the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019 on 25 July. The Bill was introduced by the Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. The bill is for the justice, respect and dignity of women. Provisions of the Bill: The Bill criminalises instant triple talaq among Muslims. It also approves a jail term of three years for the husband. The bill will replace the ordinance passed by the previous government in February. It should be noted that around 20 Muslim countries in the world, including Pakistan and Malaysia, have banned the triple talaq. Opposition: The Bill was opposed by BJP ally Janata Dal (United). The party said that it will create distrust among a particular community.

    The Companies Amendment Bill, 2019 introduced in Lok Sabha on 25 July

    July 26, 2019
    The Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2019 has been introduced in Lok Sabha on 25 July. The Bill was introduced by the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. Provision of the Ordinance: 16 of the offences that are punishable with fine or imprisonment, or both has been recategorised as it empowers the adjudicating officers, who are appointed by the central government, may now levy penalties instead. The ordinance prohibits a company from issuing shares at a discount, except in certain cases. It also says that a company can not commence business unless it files a declaration within 180 days of incorporation or files a verification of its registered office within 30 days of incorporation.  The companies must register charges such as mortgages on its property within 30 days of creation of charge. Ordinance: On January 12, 2019, the Companies (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 was promulgated. The Ordinance in 2019 amended many provisions in the Companies Act, 2013 that are relating to penalties, among others. The ordinance was meant to repeal and replace the Companies (Amendment) Ordinance, 2018 which was promulgated on November 2, 2018.  Note: The Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2018 will replace the 2018 Ordinance which was passed by Lok Sabha on January 4, 2019. It is currently pending in Rajya Sabha.

    Lok Sabha cleared the Unlawful Activities Prevention (Amendment) Bill, 2019

    July 26, 2019
    Lok Sabha cleared the Unlawful Activities Prevention (Amendment) Bill, 2019. The Bill aims to end terrorism.  Provisions of the Bill: The Bill will now empower the government to designate individuals as terrorists. If any person commits or participates in acts of terrorism or involved in terrorist, he/she can be designated as terrorist.  The Director-General of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) can now grant approval of seizure or attachment of property when the case is investigated by the agency. Bill was opposed: The amendments to the Bill was opposed saying that the legislation violates Article 21 and also lacks judicial review. Also, the opposition said that the intent of the Bill will be used to just detain people in jail and deny them a trial. The Bill was also termed as anti-federalism and anti-people.

    Rajya Sabha passed the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on 24 July

    July 25, 2019
    The Rajya Sabha passed the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Amendment) Bill, 2019 (POCSO Bill) on 24 July. The Bill will now be sent to Lok Sabha for its approval. The Bill was introduced by the Ministry of Women and Child Development. It was presented by the Minister of of Women and Child Development Smriti Irani. Provisions of the Bill: The Bill provides death penalty to the culprits for sexual assault on children. It also proposes strict punishments for other crimes that are committed against children. The Bill also aims to check the increasing cases of child sexual abuse. The Act imposes fines and imprisonment to restraint child pornography.

    Lok Sabha passed the Right to Information (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on 22 July

    July 23, 2019
    Lok Sabha passed the Right to Information (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on 22 July. The Bill amends the Right To Information Act. It aims at institutionalisation, streamlining and ease of delivery of services. Aim: The Bill aims to give power to the Centre to set serving period and salaries of Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) and Information Commissioners. The Centre can also specify the stature of information commissioners from the equivalent of election commissioners, with their salaries and service conditions. The Centre will be fully committed to transparency and autonomy of the institution. The Bill also gives rights to the Centre to reduce an equal amount to the pension of the mentioned officials.

    The Lok Sabha passed the Central Universities (Amendment) Bill, 2019

    July 17, 2019
    The Lok Sabha  passed the Central Universities (Amendment) Bill, 2019. The Bill aimed at establishing a Central University and Tribal University in Andhra Pradesh on July 12. The  government has allotted Rs.450 crore for the central university and Rs.420 crore for the central tribal university for offer research facilities in the fields of art, culture and technology to the tribal population.  Aim: The Bill seeks to amend the Central Universities Act, 2009. It aims to Provide  higher educational and research facilities in tribal art, culture, and customs primarily to the tribal population of India. It also aims to provide quality of higher education and also promote avenues of higher education for the people of the state. The Tribal University provide research facilities in tribal art, culture and customs and advancement in technology to the tribal population of India.  

    Rajya Sabha passed the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (AERA) (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on 16 July

    July 17, 2019
    The Rajya Sabha passed the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (AERA) (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on 16 July. The Bill aims to raise the threshold for an airport to qualify as major airport and inturn to reduce the tariff-fixing power of airport regulator to fewer airports.  The approval of the Bill will make as many as 16 airports under the purview of AERA. All other airports will continue to be looked after by the Civil Aviation Ministry. The amendment of the Bill does not subserve the interest of consumers. Bill lapsed: AERA (Amendment) Bill was earlier approved by the Cabinet in December 2017 during the first tenure of Modi government. The Bill got lapsed as it could not be passed in last year’s Monsoon Session. In the second term of the NDA government, the new Lok Sabha has approved the Bill again. The Bill got the Cabinet approval on June 24. Cons of the Bill: Privatisation of the airports and bidding system would impact the growth rate of sector, which is growing at around 10%. As the air ticket will be costlier the government would not be able to fulfill its target to take the air travel to common man. Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (AERA): The AERA is a regulator that has the powers to set the tariffs charged at airports. It was established under the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India Act, 2008. Currently, the major airports, that have an annual capacity to handle 1.5 million passengers, falls under the purview of Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (AERA).

    Meghalaya became the first Indian state to draft a water policy

    July 15, 2019
    Meghalaya became the first Indian state to draft a water policy to ensure water conservation, issues and protection of water resources in the State. The Meghalaya State Cabinet approved the draft on July 12, 2019. The approved policy intended to achieve sustainable development by  Meghalaya state government. Aim: The Water Policy, which was approved by the Meghalaya State government, aims to provide safe and hygienic water for various purposes like drinking, domestic, sanitation and livelihood development. The policy recognised water as a common pool resource for all residents of the state. It is hoped that the Water conservation will improve health and livelihood and reduce water vulnerability among the people. Implementing the policy will assure good governance for present and future generations through integrated water resources management and environmental sustainability. Features of the policy: Meghalaya State Dam Safety Organisation's (SDSO) safety audit of state dams at periodic intervals to identify the safety risks and mitigate the adverse impacts. The policy included measures such as construction of check dams to conserve rainwater, setting up of rainwater harvesting systems, and proper ways to control improper use of groundwater. State government committees will be formed at village level to address the issue of groundwater. With this, the participation of the community is expected as it is to reach to the villages. The State department will monitor the quality of the water to check if it has a high content of iron or if it's acidic.

    Rajya sabha passed the Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on 8 July

    July 9, 2019
    Rajya sabha passed the Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on 8 July. It allows the voluntary linking of the 12-digit identification number as part of know your customer (KYC) guidelines to open bank accounts or get a mobile connection. The bill will become a Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) law after President’s approval. Amendments: The amendments in the law will enable the authority responsible for issuing Aadhaar numbers to hold back the misuse of 12 digit identification numbers by aadhar. An Aadhaar holder can now opt for offline verification through QR code with consent.  An individual can not be  compelled to provide proof of possession of Aadhaar number or undergo authentication for the purpose of establishing their identity unless it is so provided by a law made by Parliament. The cost of e-KYC verifications for banks, financial technology companies and telecom service providers had increased substantially after the Supreme Court ruled in September that Aadhaar could only be used in direct benefit transfer for welfare schemes. Provisions under the Bill: UIDAI can impose a penalty of up to ₹1 crore if an entity fails to comply with the Aadhaar law and does not provide information sought by UIDAI.  UIDAI has given an option to children to cancel their Aadhaar on attaining 18 years.  Also, an entity is given a provision to create a UIDAI Fund, which will contain all fees, grants and charges received by the authority. The fund will be used for UIDAI’s expenses SC order: In September 2018, considering the privacy concerns, SC said that it was not mandatory for customers to link their Aadhaar number with their respective bank accounts or mobile phone numbers.  The Centre has brought in an ordinance to amend three laws in February. The laws are: 1. Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016 2. Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 3. Prevention of Money-laundering Act, 2002 The ordinance was passed to enable the government’s decision for voluntary use of Aadhaar for fulfilling KYC norms. 

    Rajya Sabha passed the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill 2019

    July 6, 2019
    The Rajya Sabha passed the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on 4 June. The Bill was introduced by Health Minister Harsh Vardhan. It allows for the supersession of the Medical Council of India (MCI) by a Board of Governors for a two-year period from 2018 till 2020. The Bill will also allow for the increase in the number of members in the Board of Governors to 12 from the existing seven. As the Bill has been passed by both Houses, it will replace an ordinance that was promulgated on February 21.  The panel of eminent professionals will run the scam-tainted Medical Council of India (MCI) so that medical education can be regulated in the best manner. The BoG will have eminent people that includes directors of AIIMS and PGI, Chandigarh. The board will prevail until a council is constituted. The medical education can be regulated by the introduction of the BoGs in the best manner.  

    Parliament passed Central Educational Institutions (Reservations in Teachers' Cadre) Bill 2019

    July 6, 2019
    The Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Bill, 2019 passed by the Parliament.  The Rajya Sabha passed the Bill after it got passed in Lok Sabha on 1st July 2019. This Bill replaces the “The Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Ordinance, 2019”.  The Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Bill, 2019 holds as one unit restoring earlier reservation system. The main aim of the bill is to implement a 200-point reservation system instead of 1 3-point roster system will pave the way for filling more than 7,000 teaching jobs. Around 7000 existing vacancies in Central Educational Institutions paved the way for filling up 3 lakh vacancies in the Government (Central and State) Educational institutions. The compliance of the Constitutional Provisions of Articles 14, 16 and 21. The full representation of the Scheduled Castes/ Scheduled Tribes is to improve the teaching standards in the higher educational institutions by attracting all eligible talented candidates belonging to SCs/STs/SEBCs/EWS. The unit for reservation of posts in direct recruitment in teachers cadre will be the ‘University/Educational Institution will address the long-standing demands of persons belonging to SCs/STs/SEBCs and ensure their rights envisaged under the Constitution.

    Union Cabinet approved the Code on Wages Bill on 3 July

    July 4, 2019
    The Union Cabinet approved the Code on Wages Bill, a draft legislation, on 3 July. The Bill seeks to mandate minimum wages fixed by the central government which will be implemented by states for all occupations. It is a first step towards reviving the labour law reform process.  About the Bill: The Code on Wages Bill was tabled in Lok Sabha in August 2017. But the Bill lapsed after the dissolution of the 16th Lok Sabha. The Bill proposed to empowerthe states to fix different minimum wages based on geography, skill and occupation, along with a national-level minimum wage which will act as a floor.  Currently, the minimum wages are fixed on the basis of categories such as skilled, unskilled, semi-skilled, high skilled, geographical regions, and nature of work. These categories are applicable for 45 central sphere establishments and 1709 scheduled employments in states.  At present, the Centre has fixed a non-statutory measure, that is, a National Floor-Level Minimum Wage, to ensure that states fix their minimum wages beyond this floor level. Under the Code on Wages Bill, four labour laws will be combined. The four laws are: 1) Payment of Wages Act, 1936 2) Minimum Wages Act, 1948 3) Payment of Bonus Act, 1965 4) Equal Remuneration Act, 1976 Ministry of Labour and Employment: Headquarters: New Delhi Minister: Santosh Gangwar (independent charge) Aim: ♦ To develop and coordinate vocational skill training and employment ♦ To create a healthy work environment for higher production and productivity  ♦ It is responsible to protect and safeguard the interest of workers in general and the poor, deprived and disadvantaged sections of the society.

    Lok Sabha passed the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers Cadre) Bill 2019

    July 2, 2019
    The Lok Sabha passed the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Bill 2019 in 1 July 2019. The Bill seeks to replace an Ordinance which was issued in March. The House unanimously passed the Bill. The opposition demanded the bill to be referred to the standing committee for a comprehensive review.  Aim: The Bill will reiterate the government’s commitment towards reservation and to give equal opportunity to all as per the Constitution. This bill will give enough scope and opportunities in higher education sector in the country. The Bill will help fill about 7,000 existing vacancies in 41 Central universities. It aims to provide for reservation in appointments by direct recruitment of persons belonging to the SC, ST, Socially and Economically Backward Classes and Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) to the teachers’ cadre in certain Central Education Institution. Provisions of the Bill: The Bill will make University a unit, rather than a department, for the purpose of providing reservation in teachers’ positions in Central educational institutions. The Bill also has provision for 10% reservation for Economically Weaker Section (EWS). The government has already approved allocation of ₹770 crore for reservation for EWS.

    Rajya Sabha cleared the Special Economic Zones (Amendment) Bill, 2019

    June 29, 2019
    The Rajya Sabha cleared the Special Economic Zones (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on June 27.that seeks to allow trusts to set up units in special economic zones, a day after the Lok Sabha passed the measure. The Bill will replace the Special Economic Zones (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019, promulgated in March. The amendment of sub-section (v) of Section 2 of the SEZ Act, 2005 will make a trust or any entity notified by the Central government eligible for consideration of grant of permission to set up a unit in special economic zones. The Bill aims at improving and encouraging more investments and introducing features including single-window clearance and to ease imports and exports.  Ordinance: The Bill will replace the ordinance promulgated in February 2019. The ordinance seeks to amend the definition of a person under the SEZ Act 2005, which will enable a trust to be considered for grant of permission to set up a unit. Exports from SEZs rose 21% on year to Rs 7 lakh crore in FY19. As of March 31, there were 232 SEZs, of which 25 are multiproduct and the rest are sector specific, with 5,109 approved units.

    Lok Sabha passed the Homeopathy Central Council (Amendment) Bill, 2019

    June 29, 2019
    Shripad Yesso Naik, Minister of State, Ministry of AYUSH presented the Homeopathy Central Council (Amendment) Bill, 2019 in the Lok Sabha. It passed the Bill on 27 June. Once Rajya Sabha passes the Bill, it will replace the ordinance issued in the same regard by the previous government. This was the second bill to be passed in Lok Sabha, in the second term of NDA government, after the Special Economic Zone (Amendment) Bill 2019. Homoeopathy Central Council (Amendment) Bill, 2019: The Homoeopathy Central Council (Amendment) Bill, 2019 enables the government to extend the tenure of the Board of Governors (BoGs) for a further period of one year, with effect from May 17, 2019. The BoGs have been entrusted with the affairs of the Central Homeopathy Council.  The Board of Governors constitutes of eminent and qualified homoeopathy doctors and eminent administrators. The opposition parties opposed the Bill and demanded that the government should further examine the proposed legislation and provide supervision mechanism for homoeopathy and ayurvedic medical institutions. Homeopathy Central Council Act, 1973: The Homoeopathy Central Council Act, 1973 was enacted for the constitution of the Central Council of Homeopathy, along with the maintenance of the Central Register of Homeopathy and matters related to the field of homoeopathy. The Act was amended and passed in December 2002 as Homoeopathy Central Council Amendment Act, 2002. The amendment was to make provisions and seek permission from the central government for the setting up of new colleges or starting new courses or increase the admissions in the existing colleges. Despite the amendment many homoeopathic colleges are still struggling to meet the required standards necessary for quality education.

    Lok Sabha passed the Special Economic Zones (Amendment) Bill, 2019

    June 27, 2019
    The Lok Sabha passed the Special Economic Zones (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on 26 June. The amendment of sub-section (v) of Section 2 of the SEZ Act, 2005 will make a trust or any entity notified by the Central government eligible for consideration of grant of permission to set up a unit in special economic zones. The Bill aims at improving and encouraging more investments and introducing features including single-window clearance and to ease imports and exports.  Ordinance: The Bill will replace the ordinance promulgated in February 2019. The ordinance seeks to amend the definition of a person under the SEZ Act 2005, which will enable a trust to be considered for grant of permission to set up a unit. Exports from SEZs rose 21% on year to Rs 7 lakh crore in FY19. As of March 31, there were 232 SEZs, of which 25 are multiproduct and the rest are sector specific, with 5,109 approved units.

    Fresh bill to ban Triple Talaq to be introduced in Lok Sabha

    June 21, 2019
    A fresh bill to ban the practice of instant triple talaq introduced in the Lok Sabha.  The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019 is been listed in the Lok Sabha's agenda replace an ordinance This is issued in February by the previous BJP-led NDA government. The 16th Lok Sabha the previous bill had lapsed pending in the Rajya Sabha. The Bill proposes to make the practice of instant triple talaq (talaq-e-biddat) a penal offence. The new bill is a copy of the ordinance in force.  Under the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Ordinance, 2019 The divorcing through instant triple talaq is illegal, void and will attract a jail term of three years for the husband.

    Union Cabinet cleared NDIAC Bill, 2019 on institutionalised arbitration

    June 16, 2019
    The Union Cabinet has cleared the New Delhi International Arbitration Centre (NDIAC) Bill, 2019, which provides for setting up of an independent and autonomous body for institutional arbitration. It also aims to acquire and transfer the undertakings of International Centre For Alternative Dispute Resolution to New Delhi International Arbitration Centre (NDIAC) with effect from March 2 this year. The Bill provides to replace and repeal the NDIAC Ordinance, 2019. The proposed New Delhi International Arbitration Centre is headed by a chairperson, who has been a judge of the Supreme Court or a judge of a high court or an eminent person, having special knowledge and experience in the conduct or administration of arbitration.

    The Union Cabinet approved two Medical Bills that was lapsed in the 16th Lok Sabha session

    June 13, 2019
    The Union Cabinet approved the two Medical Bills, Indian Medical Council (Amendment Bill), 2019, and the Homoeopathy Central Council (Amendment Bill), 2019. Both the bills had lapsed in the 16th Lok Sabha session.  The Bills are to be reintroduced in the upcoming Parliament session.  Indian Medical Council (Amendment Bill), 2019: The Bill is aimed at bringing in accountability, transparency, and quality in the governance of medical education in the country. The bill will also provide for supersession of the Medical Council of India (MCI) for a period of two years from August 26, 2018. The Board of Governors shall exercise the powers and functions of the MCI as assigned under the IMC Act, 1956. The Board of Governors (BoG) members will be increased from existing 7 to 12. Homoeopathy Central Council (Amendment Bill), 2019: The Homoeopathy Central Council (Amendment Bill), 2019 is intended to extend the period for reconstitution of the Central Council from an existing period of one year to two years. Also, the tenure of the Board of Governors will be extended for a further period of one year with effect from May 17, 2019. Dentists Act, 1948: The Centre has also approved the introduction of a Bill to amend the Dentists Act, 1948. The Bill aimed to make the Dental Council of India more effective. The Bill is expected to restructure the Dental Councils. Also, the representation of Central government members and elected members would no longer be made mandatory in the Dental Councils.

    Triple Talaq Bill is to be tabled in the very first session of Parliament in the NDA government

    June 9, 2019
    The second term of Narendra Modi government is likely to place the controversial Triple Talaq Bill in its very first session of Parliament. The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Second Ordinance was promulgated on February 21, 2019.  An ordinance will lapse after six months of the promulgation. The bill should be passed by both sessions of Parliament within 45 days after the first sitting of Parliament. The Modi government’s government in its first tenure has failed to get the Bill cleared in the Rajya Sabha as the Opposition opposed the criminality clause. Even after removing the clause the government could not table the Bill, owing to continuous disruptions. Ordinance: The ordinance is a decree or law promulgated by a state or national government without the consent of the legislature. Article 123 of the Constitution of India grants the President certain law-making powers to promulgate ordinances when either of the two Houses of Parliament is not in session. The governor of a state can also issue ordinances under Article 213 when the state legislative assembly is not in session. Ordinances cease to operate either if Parliament/State assembly does not approve of them within six weeks of once both houses of the Parliament are in session, or if disapproving resolutions are passed by both Houses. 

    Lok Sabha passed the Indian Forest Amendment Bill, 2017

    March 22, 2019
    The Lok Sabha passed the Indian Forest (Amendment) Bill, 2017. The bill replaces Indian Forest (Amendment) Ordinance, 2017 promulgated by President Ram Nath Kovind in November 2017 and amends Indian Forest Act, 1927.  Though bamboo was taxonomically a grass, it was earlier defined as a tree under the Indian Forest Act, 1927 and its felling and transit required permission. It was a major impediment for bamboo cultivation by farmers on non-forest land.  The bill omits bamboo grown in non-forest areas from the definition of trees. The omission thereby exempts it from requiring permits for felling or transportation of bamboo grown in non-forest areas. With this, bamboo grown in non-forest areas ceases to be a tree. It will encourage bamboo plantation by farmers, which will contribute to doubling farmers income by 2022.  The Indian Forest Act, 1927 consolidates laws relating to forests, the transit of forest-produce and duty to be levied on them. Under it, the definition of the tree includes palms, stumps, bamboos, brush-wood, and canes.

    MoEFCC amended rules to ban the import of solid plastic waste

    March 8, 2019
    The Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has amended the Hazardous and other Wastes (Management and Transboundary Movement) Rules, 2016 to completely ban the import of solid plastic waste.  The amendment notified by the MoEFCC fixes a loophole which previously allowed the import of plastic waste into India for processing. The ban on the import of plastics is in lines with the principles of sustainable development. To ensure the ban doesn't adversely impact the ease of doing business, the amendment allows the reverse import of defective electrical and electronic assemblies and components manufactured in and exported from India, within a year of export. India is exploring various options to discourage the use of single-use plastics and also is emphasizing recycling of the plastic waste to reduce the burden on the environment thereby providing benefits.

    Cabinet approved the National Mineral Policy 2019 on 28th February

    March 1, 2019
    The Union Cabinet approved the National Mineral Policy 2019 on 28th February 2019. The policy is aimed at bringing about more effective regulation to the sector as well as a more sustainable approach while addressing the issues of those affected by mining. The policy will also provide a more effective, meaningful and implementable policy that brings in further transparency, better regulation, and enforcement, balanced social and economic growth as well as sustainable mining practices.  It also aims to increase the share of Indian software products in global market by tenfold, pitches for nurturing of 10,000 technology start-ups in software product industry, including 1,000 such startups in tier-II and tier-III towns.

    Cabinet approved the ordinance to curb Ponzi schemes

    February 20, 2019
    The Cabinet approved the promulgation of an ordinance with regard to the Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Bill, to protect investors from Ponzi schemes. The Lok Sabha had passed the Bill on the last day of the Budget session, but could not get the approval of the Rajya Sabha. The proposed ordinance will tackle the menace of illicit deposit-taking activities launched by rapacious operators who exploiting regulatory gaps and lack of strict administrative measures to dupe poor and gullible people of their hard-earned savings. It has provisions for punishment and repayment of deposits. Ponzi scheme: Ponzi scheme is a form of fraud which lures investors and pays profits to earlier investors by using funds obtained from more recent investors.

    LS passed the Jallianwala Bagh National Memorial (Amendment) Bill, 2018

    February 16, 2019
    The Jallianwala Bagh National Memorial (Amendment) Bill, 2018 was passed in Lok Sabha. It amends the Jallianwala Bagh National Memorial Act, 1951. The act was provided for the erection of a National Memorial in memory of those killed or wounded on April 13, 1919 in Jallianwala Bagh, Amritsar.  The Bill provided a Trust to manage the National Memorial. The Trust as per the 1951 Act includes: (i) the Prime Minister, as Chairperson, (ii) the President of the Indian National Congress, (iii) Minister-in-charge of Culture, (iv) the Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha, (v) the Governor of Punjab, (vi) the Chief Minister of Punjab, and (vii) three eminent persons nominated by the central government. The 2018 amendment bill removes the President of and the Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha. It also says that the leader of the single largest opposition party in the Lok Sabha will be the Trustee.

    Rajya Sabha cleared law removing leprosy as ground for divorce

    February 14, 2019
    Parliament passed a Bill removing leprosy as a ground for divorce under five personal laws, including the Hindu Marriage Act. The Rajya Sabha on the last day of the Budget session passed the Bill without debate after consensus on the issue.  The Personal Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2018 sought to remove leprosy as a ground for divorce in five personal laws, Hindu Marriage Act, Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act, Divorce Act (for Christians), Special Marriage Act and the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act.

    Centre introduced the Registration of Marriage of Non-Resident Indian Bill

    February 14, 2019
    The government has introduced the Registration of Marriage of Non-Resident Indian Bill, 2019 in the Parliament. The Bill aims to arrest the cases of Indian women being trapped in fraudulent marriages with non-resident Indians (NRI). The bill was introduced by the Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj in the Rajya Sabha. The Bill proposes to offer greater protection to Indian women married to NRIs and serve as a deterrent to NRIs against harassment of their spouses.

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