Table of Contents
- Mali's Prime Minister has resigned along with his entire government after it came under mounting pressure over handling the violence in the restive Mopti region.
Further In News
- The rage was rising especially after a massacre on March 23 in which 160 people were killed in the village of Ogossagou near the border with Burkina Faso.
- Tens of thousands of people took to the streets of Bamako on April 5 to protest against the upsurge of violence, accusing the government of not doing enough to stop it.
- Mali has been struggling to restore stability since Islamist extremists linked to Al-Qaeda took control of the country's vast desert north in early 2012.
- The Supreme Court heard a plea on Voting rights of undertrials and convicts.
- An electoral law which denies undertrials and convicts their right to vote.
- Supreme Court Said On It:
- The SC has observed that a person is in prison because of his or her conduct, and cannot claim equal rights as others who are not incarcerated.
- Why they should be given voting rights?
- The voting ban is criticised on the ground that it makes no offence-based or sentence-based classification that is, prisoners are debarred from voting irrespective of the gravity of the offence they have committed, or the length of their sentence.
- It also makes no distinction between convicted prisoners, undertrials, and those in lawful police custody.
- Besides, a person is innocent until proven guilty by law. Despite this, it denies an undertrial the right to vote but allows a detainee the same.
- The provision also violates the rights to equality, vote (Article 326) and is arbitrary. It is not a reasonable restriction.
- Who can vote and who cannot?
- Under Section 62(5) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, individuals in lawful custody of the police and those serving a sentence of imprisonment after conviction cannot vote.
- Undertrial prisoners are also excluded from participating in elections even if their names are on electoral rolls.
- Only those under preventive detention can cast their vote through postal ballots.
- Need of the hour Is:
- Undertrials should be allowed to vote.
- This is because there are many people, awaiting trial, who have spent more time in prison than the actual term their alleged crime merits.
- Their numbers are much bigger than convicts.
- 150 Indian peacekeepers serving with the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) have received medals of honour for their dedicated service and sacrifice.
- About United Nations Mission in South Sudan:
- On 9 July 2011 South Sudan became the newest country in the world.
- The birth of the Republic of South Sudan is the culmination of a six-year peace process which began with the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) in 2005.
- However, the Security Council determined that the situation faced by South Sudan continued to constitute a threat to international peace and security in the region and established the United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UNMISS) to consolidate peace and security and to help establish conditions for development.
- Following the crisis which broke out in South Sudan in December 2013, the Security Council reinforced UNMISS and reprioritized its mandate towards the protection of civilians, human rights monitoring, and support for the delivery of humanitarian assistance and for the implementation of the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement.
- The stated UNMISS Mandate:
- Support for peace consolidation and thereby fostering longer-term state building and economic development.
- Support the Government of the Republic of South Sudan in exercising its responsibilities for conflict prevention, mitigation and resolution and protect civilians.
- Support the Government of the Republic of South Sudan in developing its capacity to provide security, to establish rule of law, and to strengthen the security and justice sectors.
- What does mean peacekeeping?
- United Nations Peacekeeping helps countries torn by conflict create conditions for lasting peace.
- Peacekeeping has proven to be one of the most effective tools available to the UN to assist host countries navigate the difficult path from conflict to peace.
- Peacekeeping has unique strengths, including legitimacy, burden sharing, and an ability to deploy and sustain troops and police from around the globe, integrating them with civilian peacekeepers to advance multidimensional mandates.
- UN peacekeepers provide security and the political and peacebuilding support to help countries make the difficult, early transition from conflict to peace.
- There are currently 14 UN peacekeeping operations deployed on four continents.
- UN Peacekeeping is guided by three basic principles:
- Consent of the parties
- Non-use of force except in self-defence and defence of the mandate
- The world's fattest parrot, the critically endangered kakapo, has enjoyed a record breaking breeding season.
- Climate change is possibly aiding the species' unique mating spree.
- Less than 50 years after the flightless nocturnal bird was thought to have been extinct, at least 75 chicks are expected to survive this year.
- Significantly boost the population which has grown to 147 adults since a small number of the plump green, yellow and black birds was discovered in 1970.
- The kakapo is an "unusual" parrot as the females control the breeding process and only mate every two to four years when New Zealand's native rimu trees are full of fruit.
- The rimu trees have produced a bumper crop this year.
- One theory was that climate change and temperature fluctuations could be behind the berry bonanza.
- The surviving kakapo whose name means "night parrot" in Maori are kept on four predator-free islands off the New Zealand coast.
- At the start of the breeding season, the males which weigh about four kilograms, put themselves on display while the females choose a partner.
- They mate and then end the relationship, shutting the male out of the incubation and rearing processes.
- New Zealand's kakapo recovery programme is so tightly monitored that although they remain in the wild, each one has a radio transmitter attached to its body and there are monitoring systems embedded in their nests.
- It is claimed that kakapo is probably one of the most intensively managed species in the world.