Bills & Acts Current Affairs 2019 - Current Affairs Today

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Updated:23-05-2019 03:26:39
Updated:23-05-2019 22 March 2019

  • Lok Sabha passed the Indian Forest Amendment Bill, 2017

    22 March 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.

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    MoEFCC amended rules to ban the import of solid plastic waste

    8 March 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

    1 March 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

    20 February 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

    16 February 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

    14 February 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

    14 February 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.

    Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 and triple talaq Bill lapsed

    14 February 2019
    The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 lapsed as the government failed to push it through Rajya Sabha despite a last- ditch effort as the term of the present Lok Sabha ends.  The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill was seen as violating the terms of the 1985 Assam Accord that had set March 24, 1971 as the cut-off for granting citizenship.  Along with the Citizenship Bill, the triple talaq Bill that criminalises instant divorce in a Muslim marriage has also lapsed.

    AP Assembly cleared Kapu sub castes, EWS Bills

    10 February 2019
    The Andhra Pradesh Assembly passed the Bills for 5% reservation each for the Kapus (Kapus, Telaga, Ontari and Balija sub-castes) and other Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) in the general category consequent to the 103rd amendment to the Constitution. The Bills are the A.P. EWSs of Citizens (Reservation of Seats in Educational Institutions and of Appointments or Posts in the Public Services under the State for Kapus) Bill, 2019 and the A.P. EWS other than Kapus (Reservation of Seats in Educational Institutions and of Appointments or Posts in Public Services under the State) Bill, 2019. The Assembly also passed the A.P. Backward Classes Sub-Plan (Planning, Allocation, and Utilisation of Financial Resources) Bill, 2019 (BC Sub-Plan) after brief debate on its modalities.

    President of India gives assent to The Constitution (One Hundred and third Amendment) ACT, 2019

    14 January 2019
    President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind gave his assent to the Constitution (One Hundred and Third Amendment) Act, 2019 which grants 10 percent reservation in jobs and educational institutions to the economically weaker sections in the general category. The Act amends Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution to provide reservation to the economically weaker sections in the general category. The 10 percent reservation will be in addition to the existing 50 percent reservation for the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes (OBC) making the total reservation quota 60%. Following a group of general category, people are eligible for the reservation as per the law Families with Income below Rs 8 lakh per annum.

    Centre introduced the Trade Unions Act, 1926 in LS

    12 January 2019
    Centre introduced a Bill in the Lok Sabha to amend the Trade Unions Act, 1926. The Centre said that the Bill would grant recognition to trade unions, ensure representation of workers in tripartite bodies and check arbitrary nomination by the government. The CPI(M) members protested against introducing the Bill and walked out in protest.

    Rajya Sabha Cleared 10 percent quota for economically weak in general category

    10 January 2019
    A day after Lok Sabha, the Rajya Sabha on 9th January , 2019 passed the Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty Fourth Amendment) Bill 2019 to introduce a 10% reservation for economically weaker sections among general category for jobs and educational institutions. The bill was supported by 165 members while seven members voted against it. The bill had the support of 323 lawmakers in the lower house. The quota is over and above 50 percent mandated for the SCs, STs and the OBCs. The major castes to benefit from the proposed law are Brahmins, Rajputs (Thakurs), Jats, Marathas, Bhumihars, several trading castes, Kapus and Kammas among other upper castes. The Bill amends Article 15 of the Constitution, by adding a clause which allows states to make "special provision for the advancement of any economically weaker sections of citizens".

    Lok Sabha passed the 'DNA Technology (Use and Application) Regulation Bill, 2019'

    9 January 2019
    The purpose of this Bill is to expand the application of DNA-based forensic technologies to support and strengthen the justice delivery system of the country. The key components of this Bill include: establishment of a DNA Regulatory Board; accreditation of DNA laboratories undertaking DNA testing, analysing, etc.; establishment of the National and Regional DNA Data Banks, as envisaged in the Bill, will assist in forensic investigations. The Bill also aims to add value in empowering the criminal justice delivery system by enabling the application of DNA evidence, which is considered the gold standard in crime investigations. Earlier, Shashi Tharoor of Congress and N K Premchandran of RSP opposed the bill and demanded to send it to the Standing Committee of the House.

    Cabinet cleared the redrafted Citizenship Amendment Bill

    8 January 2019
    The Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) on the contentious Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2016 recommended that the Assam government should help settle migrants especially in places which are not densely populated, thus, causing a lesser impact on the demographic changes and providing succour to the indigenous Assamese people. The Union Cabinet cleared the redrafted Citizenship Amendment Bill and it will be tabled in Parliament. The Bill paves the way to grant citizenship to six religious minorities: Hindus, Jains, Sikhs, Parsis, Christians, and Buddhists, from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh who came to India before 2014. The BJP-ruled Assam showed strong resistance to the bill as it would pave the way for giving citizenship for people came after March 1971 in Assam, which adds burden to the State, in violation of the Assam Accord of 1985.

    Cabinet approved a Constitution Amendment Bill to provide 10 percent reservation

    8 January 2019
    The Cabinet approved a Constitution Amendment Bill to provide 10% reservation to the economically backward sections in the general category. The Bill will also cover those from the Muslim, Sikh, Christian, Buddhist and other minority communities.  The quota will be over and above the existing 50% reservation to the Scheduled Castes, the Scheduled Tribes and the Other Backward Classes (OBC). The government is likely to bring a Constitution Amendment bill in Parliament. According to article 368, the Bill must be passed in each House by an absolute majority (over 50% of total membership) and a two-thirds majority of members present and voting. Eligibility: ♦ People earning Iess lakh annually ♦ People who own farm land below 5 acres ♦ People own a measuring less than 1,000 sq ft ♦ In its famous lndra Sawhney judgment, the Supreme Court had set a ap of 50% on quotas ♦ A Constitutional Amendment Bill would be required as the Constitution does not provide for reservation on the ground of economic conditions. It envisages Amendments to Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution

    LS passed Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill

    6 January 2019
    The Lok Sabha passed the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill, 2018. The Bill will allow a panel of eminent professionals to run the scam-tainted Medical Council of India (MCI) so that medical education can be regulated in the best manner. Health Minister Jagat Prakash Nadda said this Bill superseded the MCI and the powers of the council had been vested in a Board of Governors (BoG). The BoG will have all eminent personalities and include directors of AIIMS and PGI, Chandigarh. This board will continue to perform till a council is constituted. The Bill seeks to replace an ordinance issued in September 2018. A separate Bill to replace the MCI with the National Medical Commission is pending in Parliament.

    Parliament passed the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (Amendment) Bill

    5 January 2019
    Parliament following the approval from the Rajya-Sabha passed a bill to provide retrospective recognition to central and state government funded institutions offering B.Ed and related courses that are not recognized under the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) Act.. The NCTE (Amendment) Bill which will be a one-time measure would help over 17,000 students who have obtained B.Ed degrees from those institutions which do not have NCTE approval for the course under the 1993 law. 23 state and central universities and colleges offering B.Ed courses were found not recognized by the Council. The government would ensure that the quality of institutes offering B.Ed courses is maintained and proposes to start an integrated course in B.ED as in Law and other courses from 2020.

    Bill on Arunachals ST list approved by Union cabinet

    4 January 2019
    The Union Cabinet approved the introduction of a Bill to modify the list of Scheduled Tribes (ST) of Arunachal Pradesh. The bill proposes deletion of the Abor tribe from the state's ST list 'as it is the same as Adi' tribe. As there is no tribe called 'Khampti', the bill replaces it with 'Tai Khamti' on the list. The bill seeks to include the Mishmi-Kaman (Miju Mishmi), Idu (Mishmi) and Taraon (Digaru Mishmi) tribes in the list. It also proposes inclusion of 'Monpa, Memba, Sartang, Sajolong in lieu of the Momba' tribe. The Nocte, Tangsa, Tutsa and Wancho tribes would replace the words 'any Naga tribe' in the state's ST list.

    Kerala State Cabinet approved Kerala Pravasi Welfare Act

    4 January 2019
    The Kerala State Cabinet decided to recommend the Governor to promulgate an Ordinance amending the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Act. The Act aims at providing a regular income for Non-Resident Keralites (NoRKs) returning home. The amount collected through the scheme will be used to fund development activities taken up by Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB) and other agencies. The Cabinet resolved to enhance the monthly remuneration for special Government pleaders to Rs.1,20,000, senior government pleaders to Rs.1,10,000 and that for government pleaders to Rs.1,00,000. The proposed scheme will enable the Kerala Pravasi Welfare Board to receive deposits from non-resident Malayalis and use it, along with a matching share from the government, to provide a monthly dividend for investors.

    Cabinet approved the amendment on Trade Unions Act

    3 January 2019
    The Union Cabinet approved the amendment on Trade Unions Act, 1926, to facilitate recognition of trade unions at the Central and federal level. The amendment was proposed by the Centre. Most trade unions opposed the proposed amendments saying the government was trying to interfere in, and cripple, their functioning.  Ten Central trade unions had earlier written to the Labour Ministry objecting to the draft version of the amendment Bill; the only major standout was the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh, affiliated to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. The amendment will ensure that the nomination of workers’ representatives in tripartite bodies by the government will become more transparent and reduce litigation and industrial unrest. Trade unions which are recognised under the amended law would be accountable in maintaining industrial harmony. Ten Central trade unions have issued a general strike call on January 8 and 9.

    Cabinet approved the draft National Commission for Homoeopathy Bill

    30 December 2018
    The Union Cabinet approved the draft National Commission for Homoeopathy Bill, 2018. The Bill seeks to replace the existing regulator Central Council of Homoeopathy with a new body to ensure transparency and accountability. The Bill aims to bring reforms in the medical education of Homoeopathy. The Bill also aims at bringing reforms in the medical education of homoeopathy in line with the National Medical Commission proposed for setting up for allopathy system of medicine. The draft Bill provides for the constitution of a National Commission with three autonomous boards entrusted with the conduct of education of Homoeopathy by Homoeopathy Education Board. 

    Cabinet approved the draft National Commission for Indian System of Medicine Bill

    29 December 2018
    The Union Cabinet approved the draft National Commission for Indian System of Medicine Bill, 2018. The NCIM will promote the availability of affordable healthcare services in all parts of the country. The draft Bill will enable the constitution of a National Commission with four autonomous boards for the purpose of conducting overall education in Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, and Sowarigpa. There are two common boards, namely the board of assessment and rating to assess and grant permission to educational institutions of Indian systems of medicine, and board of ethics and registration of practitioners of Indian systems of medicine to maintain a National Register and ethical issues relating to practice under the National Commission for Indian Medicine. The Bill proposes an entrance and an exit exam that all graduates need to clear to get practising licenses. This is to assess the standard of teachers before appointment and promotions.

    Manipur Assembly passed anti-mob violence bill

    26 December 2018
    Manipur Assembly led by CM N Biren Singh passed the 'Manipur Protection from Mob Violence Bill' to reduce the number of mob lynchings in the state. The bill recommends life imprisonment for those involved in mob violence if it results in the death of a victim. The assembly also passed the Manipur Goods and Services Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2018 unanimously.

    Lok Sabha passed Consumer Protection Bill

    22 December 2018
    The Lok Sabha passed two Bills, the Consumer Protection Bill, 2018 and the National Trust for Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation, and Multiple Disabilities (Amendment) Bill, 2018. The Consumer Protection Bill, 2018 seeks to replace the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. The Bill will become law once it goes through the Rajya Sabha. It is meant to protect those who use new technologies such as e-commerce and online shopping. The financial jurisdiction of the District Consumers Courts has been increased: they can deal with complaints involving Rs.1 crore as against the Rs.20 lakh earlier. Under the clause of product liability, a manufacturer will be liable to give compensation for products with defects.

    U.S. Senate passes the First Step Act

    21 December 2018
    The U.S. Senate passed the First Step Act, a criminal justice reform Bill, that would roll back what are seen as excessively punitive criminal justice policies that have been in place since the crackdown on crime in the 1980s. The Bill benefits federally convicted individuals, mostly serving drug offences. Major reforms include reducing the disparity in how crack cocaine and powder cocaine offences are treated by federal law, the differential treatment of the types of cocaine offences tends to be harsher on African-American users. Some 2,000 federal offenders are likely to be impacted by this. The leaders of the U.S. House expects the Bill to pass their chamber so that President Trump can sign it into law.

    Lok Sabha passed the Surrogacy Regulation Bill

    20 December 2018
    The Lok Sabha passed the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill 2016. The Bill aimed at banning commercial surrogacy to protect women from exploitation. It also proposed to allow only altruistic surrogacy by infertile Indian couples from a "close relative" only. The Surrogacy Bill was approved by the Cabinet in August 2016. It was introduced in the Lok Sabha in November 2016 and was later referred to a parliamentary standing committee on health and family welfare in January 2017. The Bill stated: ♦ Singles, homosexuals and live-in couples cannot apply for surrogacy ♦ The couples who already have children will also not be allowed to opt for surrogacy ♦ It entitles only Indian citizens to avail of surrogacy, whereas foreigners, NRls and PIOs are not allowed to commission surrogacy in the country ♦ Women within the age group of 23 years to 50 years and men aged between 26 and 55 years will be eligible to go in for surrogacy. The child, thus born, will be deemed to be the legal offspring of the intended couple ♦ A woman can be a surrogate only once in her lifetime  

    Maharashtra Governor approved the Bill granting reservation to Marathas

    2 December 2018
    Maharashtra Governor Vidyasagar Rao approved the Bill granting 16% reservation to Marathas. He signed the reservation under the state for Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (SEBC) Act, 2018. The Maratha community, which forms 30% of the state population, will be entitled to reservation benefits and advantages enshrined in the Articles 15(4) and 16(4) of the Constitution as the quota has been provided under the Socially and Educationally Backward Class (SEBC) category.  In September 2014, the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)-led state government had promulgated an ordinance for Maratha quota. However, it failed the legal test. In June 2017, the State Backward Class Commission (SBCC) was asked to study the social, financial and educational status of the Maratha community.

    Iran parliament passed a Bill to counter terrorist financing

    8 October 2018
    Iran’s Parliament approved a Bill to counter terrorist financing. It was strongly opposed by conservatives but seen as vital to salvaging the nuclear deal with European and Asian partners. The objective of the Bill is to bring Iran’s laws in line with international standards and allow it to join the UN Terrorism Financing Convention. The Bill, that was put forward by Iran’s government, is a bid to meet demands by the international Financial Action Task Force (FATF). FATF urged Iran to tighten its laws against money laundering and terror financing.  The issue has become particularly pressing since the United States walked out of the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran earlier this year and began reimposing sanctions.

    Supreme Court decriminalised a portion of Section 377 of IPC

    6 September 2018
    On 6th September 2018, the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra overruled its own 2013 decision and decriminalised a portion of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), that criminalises private consensual sexual acts between same sex adults (homosexuality). Section 377 was introduced in 1861 during the British rule of India, and targeted in particular Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) individuals and communities. Modelled on the Buggery Act of 1533, it criminalised sexual activities "against the order of nature", including homosexual sex.

    Arunachal Cabinet passed Bill for creation of 3 new districts

    30 August 2018
    The Arunachal Pradesh Assembly passed a Bill for the creation of three new districts, namely Pakke-Kesang, Lepa Rada and Shi Yomi, in the State. Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein had introduced the Arunachal Pradesh Re-Organisation of Districts (Amendment) Bill, 2018, in the House. The Assembly passed the Bill by voice vote. Arunachal Pradesh as of now has 22 districts.  The Pakke-Kessang district will be carved out of East Kameng district with five administrative units.  The Lepa Rada district would be created by bifurcating the Lower Siang district with headquarters at Basar and four administrative units.  The Shi-Yomi district would be created by bifurcating the West Siang district with its headquarters at Tato and four administrative units.

    Punjab Assembly passed Bills against sacrilege

    29 August 2018
    The Punjab Assembly, led by chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh,  unanimously passed Bills for an amendment to the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) to make desecration of all religious texts punishable with life imprisonment.  The IPC (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2018, has inserted Section 295AA. The Bill provides that whoever causes injury, damage or sacrilege to Sri Guru Granth Sahib, Srimad Bhagavad Gita, the Holy Quran and the Holy Bible with the intention to hurt the religious feelings of the people shall be punished with imprisonment for life.

    Supreme Court clarified Second marriage is valid even if plea against divorce is pending

    28 August 2018
    Interpreting section 15 of Hindu Marriage Act, SC bench observed that restriction placed on the second marriage in Section 15 of the Act till the dismissal of an appeal would not apply to a case where parties have settled and decided not to pursue the matter. Section 5(1) of the Hindu Marriage Act places a bar on marriage by a person who has a spouse living at the time of the marriage. Section 11 makes such a marriage null and void. Section 15 tells when a divorcee can marry again.

    Rajya Sabha passes Immovable Property Amendment Bill

    11 August 2018
    The Requisitioning and Acquisition of Immovable Property (Amendment) Bill, 2017 which was moved by Union Urban Development Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, was adopted by a voice vote. The Lok Sabha had passed the bill in December last year. Aim:-  To amend the regulations governing the compensation payable for acquisition of immovable property by the Centre for defence and security purposes.

    Rajya Sabha passed the SC and ST (PoA) Amendment Bill 2018

    10 August 2018
    Rajya Sabha passed the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill, 2018. The Bill will reverse the Supreme Court order that provides the provision for the immediate arrest of the accused booked under the SC/ST law. Now the Bill rules out any provision for anticipatory bail for a person accused of atrocities against people from SC and ST communities.  It states that there will be no need for a preliminary enquiry to register a criminal case. An arrest under this proposed law would not be subject to any approval. An FIR will be filed based on complaints of crimes against people from Dalit and tribal communities without any questions, it entails.

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

    10 August 2018
    Lok Sabha passed the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, outlawing talaq-e-biddat. According to the Bill, talaq-e-biddat has been made a cognizable and non-bailable offence. Three provisions of the Bill: ♦Instant triple talaq is illegal ♦It imposes a jail term of up to three years and fine ♦It provides additional safeguards from the Act being misused It also provides for subsistence allowance to Muslim women and custody of minor children as may be determined by the magistrate.

    Government introduced four GST amendment Bills

    9 August 2018
    The government introduced four Bills to amend the Goods and Services Tax (GST) laws in order to make the return forms simpler and raise the turnover threshold for availing composition scheme to Rs. 1.5 crore.  The four amendment Bills are the Central GST (Amendment) Bill, the Integrated GST (Amendment) Bill, the GST (Compensation to States) Amendment Bill and the Union Territory GST (Amendment) Bill. Initially, the Bill was aimed to help the MSME sector and small traders.

    Lok Sabha passed the SC/ST (PoA) Amendment Bill, 2018

    7 August 2018
    The Lok Sabha passed the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill, 2018. The Bill bypasses the recent ruling of the Supreme Court laying down procedures for arrests under the Act. The Bill will be now passed to the Rajya Sabha. The Bill inserts three sections 18A (1) (a), 18A (1) (b) and 18A (2) in the 1989 Act.  Section 18A (1) (a) of the Bill says Preliminary enquiry shall not be required for registration of an FIR against any person. Section 18A (1) (b) of the Bill says the investigating officer shall not require approval for the arrest, if necessary, of any person against whom an accusation of having committed an offence under this Act has been made and no procedure, other than that provided under this Act or the Code, shall apply.  Section 18A (2) of the Bill says the provision of section 438 of the Code shall not apply to a case under this Act, notwithstanding any judgment or order or direction of any Court.

    Rajya Sabha passed the Constitution (123rd Amendment) Bill, 2018

    7 August 2018
    Rajya Sabha passed the Constitution (123rd Amendment) Bill, 2018 unanimously. The Bill gives statutory powers to the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC). The Bill was passed in Lok Sabha with more than a two-thirds majority on 2nd August 2018. It was recommended that the government should make public the caste census findings, based on which the reservation policy should be formulated. The demand for having a woman member in the NCBC would be considered and the other demand that one member in the five-member body must be from the minority community was dropped. 

    Lok Sabha passed the 123rd Constitutional Amendment Bill

    3 August 2018
    Lok Sabha passed the 123rd Constitutional Amendment Bill unanimously to provide a National Commission for Backward Classes (BC) as a constitutional body. The Bill was passed with all 406 votes being cast in support of the Bill. The Bill will be reviewed by the Rajya Sabha as a constitutional amendment under Article 368 should be passed by both the Houses of the Parliament separately with a special majority. The Bill will insert Article 338 B in the Constitution. According to the Bill, a Commission for the socially and educationally backward classes should be provided. The Commission constitutes of a Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and three other members. All the members shall be appointed by the President of India.

    France Parliament signed Into Law, Asylum And Immigration Bill

    2 August 2018
    This bill is designed to accelerate asylum procedures by cutting the maximum processing time from the current 120 days to 90 days after entering France.  About France President: Emmanuel Macron Capital: Paris Prime minister: Edouard Philippe  Currency: Euro, CFP franc.

    Lok Sabha passed the Commercial Bill

    2 August 2018
    The Lok Sabha passed the Commercial Courts, Commercial Division and Commercial Appellate Division of High Courts (Amendment) Bill, 2018. It aims at improving the ease of doing business in India. The Bill will designate some courts as commercial courts. By doing so, the commercial disputes can be resolved swiftly. It will also reduce the monetary jurisdiction of these courts from Rs.1 crore to Rs.3 lakh.

    Cabinet approved Bill to restore the original provisions of the SC and ST

    2 August 2018
    Cabinet has approved to introduce a Bill to restore the original provisions of the SC and  ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. The Supreme Court has ruled out the Bill on 20th March. The Union Cabinet will be introducing the Bill in Parliament during the ongoing session. The Amendment Bill introduces three new clauses after Section 18 of the original Act. The three clauses are: 1)The preliminary enquiry shall not be required for registration of a First Information Report against any person 2)The arrest of a person accused of having committed an offence under the Act would not require any approval 3)The provisions of Section 438 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, which deals with anticipatory bail, shall not apply to a case under this Act, in spite of any judgment or order of any Court.

    Lok Sabha passed the Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2018

    31 July 2018
    Lok Sabha passed the Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2018. The Bill provides a death sentence for raping girls aged under 12. It enhances the punishment for rape of a woman from a minimum of seven to ten years and a maximum of a death sentence or life imprisonment. For gang rape of a girl below 12, the punishment will be life imprisonment or death.  The Bill amends the Indian Penal Code, the Code of Criminal Procedure, the Indian Evidence Act and the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act. The Bill will replace the Criminal Law (Amendment) Ordinance, promulgated by President Ram Nath Kovind in April 2018, once Rajya Sabha passes it. 

    Lok Sabha passed the Trafficking of Persons (Prevention, Protection and Rehabilitation) Bill, 2018

    27 July 2018
    The Lok Sabha passed the Trafficking of Persons (Prevention, Protection and Rehabilitation) Bill, 2018. The Bill aimed at preventing human trafficking of women and children, providing rehabilitation to the victims and prosecuting offenders. The Bill was introduced in the House by the Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi. The Bill approves severe punishment of 10 years to life imprisonment for aggravated forms of trafficking. It also proposes establishing a National Anti-Trafficking Bureau (NATB) for coordinating, monitoring and surveillance of trafficking cases. It allocated Rs.10 crore for Relief and Rehabilitation Committee and Rehabilitation Fund.

    Lok Sabha passed the Prevention of Corruption Amendment Bill 2018

    25 July 2018
    The Lok Sabha passed the Prevention of Corruption (Amendment) Bill, 2018. The Rajya Sabha passed amendments to the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, which will make giving bribes to a public servant an offence. The Bill provides for jail terms of three to seven years, besides fine, to those convicted of taking or giving bribes to public officials. The Bill also extends in removing the provision of prior government sanction for the prosecution of public servants. The amendment bill also redefines criminal misconduct to cover just the misappropriation of property and the possession of disproportionate assets. It narrows definitions and penalties for a range of offences and outlines powers and procedures for seizing the property of public servants accused of corruption.

    Women and Child Development Ministry to move proposal to amend POCSO Act

    24 July 2018
    Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012 - for enhancing punishment in cases of sexual assault against young boys, will be sent to the Cabinet in two-three days by Women and Child Development (WCD) Ministry. As per this Act, death penalty will be awarded to those convicted of raping children below 12 years. ♦ Union Minister of Women and Child Development - Maneka Gandhi.

    Lok Sabha passed NCTE (Amendment) Bill

    24 July 2018
    The Lok Sabha passed the National Council for Teacher Education (Amendment) Bill to post-facto approval to Central/State institutions that are conducting teacher education courses without NCTE approval.  HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar said that it has been done as a one-time measure to ensure the benefit of the students who have appeared for B.Ed, M.Ed and various other exams in institutes that are not recognised. He also said that there are also plans to start an integrated four-year B.A.-B.Ed, B.Sc.-B.Ed and B.Com-B.Ed courses to benefit the students.

    Rajya Sabha passed the State Banks Repeal and Amendment Bill 2017

    22 July 2018
    Parliament has approved the bill to merge six subsidiary banks with the State Bank of India (SBI). The bill repeals the State Bank of India (Subsidiary Banks) Act, 1959, and State Bank of Hyderabad Act, 1956 besides amending the State Bank of India (SBI) Act, 1955. The State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, State Bank of Mysore, State Bank of Patiala and State Bank of Travancore were constituted under the State Bank of India (Subsidiary Banks) Act, 1959. The Bill was introduced in the Lok Sabha by the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on July 21, 2017, and has been passed by the lower house (Lok Sabha).

    Lok Sabha passed the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2018

    21 July 2018
    The Lok Sabha passed the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2018. It will now replace the Ordinance by the same name promulgated by the President in April 2018. The Bill empowers special courts to direct the Central government to confiscate all the assets belonging to a fugitive economic offender, including those assets that are proceeds of the crime and that do not belong to the offender. The legislation gains importance against the background of high-profile cases where individuals such as Vijay Mallya and Nirav Modi escaped the country. Ordinance Ordinances are laws that are promulgated by the President of India on the recommendation of the Union Cabinet. They can only be issued when Parliament is not in session. They enable the Indian government to take immediate legislative action. Ordinances cease to operate either if Parliament does not approve of them within six weeks of reassembly.

    Cabinet approves Central University for Andhra Pradesh

    19 July 2018
    The Cabinet approved Universities (Amendment) Bill, 2018, to set up Central University in Andhra Pradesh. Minister Prakash Javadekar tweeted that the Central University of Andhra Pradesh will start its academic session on 5th August. Also, this will result in more facilities for Andhra Pradesh in higher education.

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