Anti-Defection Law in India: A Long Road to Stability

To curb the menace of horse-trading or floor crossing or party defection by the legislators that gave rise to instability in the House and the government, the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution or the Anti-Defection Law was enacted in 1985. Under this law, a legislator can be disqualified from the house on grounds of defection. Defection is defined as voluntarily giving up the membership of a party. The Courts have later interpreted this definition to examine and explain what counts as “voluntarily giving up” the membership of a party. There are some exceptions to this law and the power to disqualify a legislator lies with the Speaker or Chairman of the House.  (more…)

Need for modifications in the provisions of the Code on Social Security, 2020

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The Code on Social Security, 2020, widens the ambit of social security policies by including employees and workers of both organised and unorganised sectors, which is a crucial step in the right direction for ensuring social security for all. The Code promises to pioneer the rights of employees in a sector agnostic manner by extending effective policies for guaranteeing social security. While it has paved the way for affecting the much needed change in India’s social security policies, there is scope for improving the language of the provisions of the Code for ensuring that it achieves the desired results. In the absence of such modifications in the specific provisions, it runs the risk of misinterpretation which can adversely impact the same rights that the Code otherwise sets out to reinforce. (more…)

Need for rehabilitation & alternate livelihood options for population displaced under the Yamuna Rejuvenation Project

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The Yamuna Rejuvenation Project was launched by the Union Government in collaboration with the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) and the University of Virginia. It is a research based project aimed at rejuvenating the river in the NCR of Delhi by way of redevelopment of the drains, particularly the Najafgarh drains, which flow into the Yamuna river and account for the majority of pollution in the river. Through engaging government agencies, experts and environmental activists, in India and internationally, the YRP engages with the multidimensional challenges in the recovery of the river. Addressing concerns in areas like public health, urban design, architecture, governance etc., it has recommended working plans in planned urban development projects on the banks of the river, the replacement of drainage systems of the British era among others. However, these urban development projects have resulted in eviction drives and demolition of the dwellings on the floodplains and this has been severely affecting the rights of a large number of slum dwelling communities who reside in the floodplains. (more…)

Need for modifications in the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020

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The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020 was promulgated on June 5th 2020 (as an ordinance), along with two other Bills together constituting the three agricultural laws passed by the government. This law amended the existing Act by removing and deregulating commodities like potatoes, onions, edible oilseeds, cereals, pulses and oils from the list of essential commodities. As an outcome, their supply will now be regulated by the Central Government only under extraordinary circumstances and stock limits will be imposed only in case of 100% and 50% increase in rates of horticultural products and non-perishable agricultural products respectively. The subsequent Bill was cleared in the Rajya Sabha on 19the September, 2020 to become an Act.  (more…)

POSHAN Abhiyan: A Contemporary Approach to a Problem Long Ignored

On 8th March 2018, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the POSHAN Abhiyaan to attack one of the most critical evils of India-malnutrition. Prime Minister’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition (POSHAN) Abhiyan brought about a significant shift in the country’s approach in dealing with malnutrition, transitioning into mission-mode envisaging multi-dimensional attacks on the causes of the problem and related issues. A planned launch on International Women’s Day was not an empty symbolism either, but a forebear of the mission’s focus on women through guided efforts to enhance nutritional outcomes for children, pregnant women, and lactating mothers. (more…)

APEC Forum, 2020: Addressing the pandemic and the road to recovery

The 27th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting was convened on the 20th of November, 2020 with the presence of all 21 members of the organization for the first time in two years, as the annual meeting in 2019 was canceled due to domestic unrest within the host country, Chile. Unlike all the previous sessions, this year’s meeting was a virtual one; the COVID-19 Pandemic resulted in even leaders of nations adapting to online conferences to address international issues. The forum this year was chaired by the Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin and was also based on the theme chosen by his country which was ‘Optimising Human Potential Towards a Resilient Future of Shared Prosperity. Pivot. Prioritize. Progress. (more…)

Solving India’s Infrastructure Problem: Is NIIF the Answer?

The National Infrastructure and Investment Fund (NIIF) is an entity registered as a Category II Alternative Investment Fund (AIF) under the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). It was established by the Government of India in the financial year 2015-16 under the former Minister of Finance, Arun Jaitley, with a planned corpus of Rs. 40,000 crore to invest in commercially-viable long-term greenfield, brownfield and stalled projects in the infrastructure sector collaboratively and sustainably. Its headquarters are in Mumbai, Maharashtra, with Mr. Sujoy Bose as its Chief Executive Officer. (more…)

India’s Tryst with Renewable Energy: The 3rd Global Re-Invest Meet & Expo

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented an unprecedented challenge to industrial and economic growth across the world. Even as industries begin to recover, as per some reports, businesses continue to operate at limited capacities with India seeing lower factory outputs and contraction of industrial production. This has resulted in trends that point towards a global recession. However, even amid such a contraction of economic growth both in India and worldwide, in its Renewables 2020 Report the International Energy Agency (IEA) has opined that the deployment and development of renewable energy (RE) have remained largely resistant and resilient to the conditions imposed by the pandemic- a trend that seems to be reflected in the Indian diaspora as well. There are predictions that even as there are short term falls in the installed capacity of distributed renewable energy, the industry itself will bounce back. This is in part helped by the short term relief provided to the power sector (which includes renewable energy) by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) since late March, 2020.  (more…)

Summary Note: Symposium on Climate Change Mitigation Policies

Organised on: 29th November, 2020 

We, at LexQuest Foundation (LQF), organized the second edition of the Symposium on Public Policy, with the theme Climate Change Mitigation Policies, on the 29th of November 2020. Considering the pandemic and the limitations it has put on our mobility, the Symposium was held on a virtual platform. It aimed to reflect on aspects that are affected by climate change or have been an outcome of it. The Symposium comprised four sessions that facilitated the exchange of ideas and experiences of different speakers with the participants. The event was moderated by our Co-Founder & Executive Director, Tanya Chandra. (more…)