Mains Q & A 05 JUNE 2023
Q1. Concerns regarding privacy and misuse are raised by the Criminal Procedure (Identification) Bill, 2022, which gives police the legal authority to collect physical and biological samples from prisoners and inmates in order to expeditiously and effectively investigate crimes. Analyse critically. (250 words).
Paper & Topic: GS II à Government Policies and Interventions
In the Lok Sabha, the Criminal Procedure (Identification) Bill, 2022, was presented. The Identification of Prisoners Act, 1920, which governs how the police can collect information from suspected or convicted criminals, is intended to be replaced. The bill’s goal is to use contemporary technologies to enable a more effective and quick investigation of crime.
The Criminal Procedure (Identification) Bill, 2022’s main provisions are:
The Identification of Prisoners Act of 1920 is intended to be repealed. In its current form, the aforementioned Act only permits a small group of people to have their body measurements taken.
It gives law enforcement agencies permission to gather, preserve, and analyse physical and biological samples from prisoners and other people in order to identify them and conduct criminal investigations.
Additionally, the Bill gives police permission to document signatures, handwriting, and other behavioural characteristics as described in Sections 53 or 53A of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, for analytical purposes.
A police officer or a prison official will need “measurements” from anyone who has been found guilty, arrested, or detained under a preventive detention law, according to the Bill.
An appropriate agency may be notified by any state government or administration of the Union Territory to collect, maintain, and communicate the measurements of a person of interest within their respective jurisdictions.
A violation of section 186 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) will be considered to have occurred if there is resistance to or refusal to permit the taking of measures as required by this Act.
The necessity for and importance of the Bill:
The bill includes provisions for taking and recording accurate body measurements using contemporary methods.
According to the proposed legislation, it is essential to broaden the “ambit of persons” that can be measured since doing so will enable investigative authorities to amass enough legally admissible proof and prove the accused’s guilt.
The Bill will support both increased prosecution and investigation agencies. Additionally, there is a risk that this will result in a rise in courtroom conviction rates.
It is anticipated to lessen the threat posed by terrorists, cybercriminals, and organised criminals who are skilled at committing identity fraud and theft.
The bill will aid in containing the major challenges to the nation and the world that they pose.
Deficiencies in the legislation:
Its scope and reach are greatly increased by the proposed statute.
The Constitution’s clause in Article 20 (3) that states that “no person accused of an offence shall be compelled to be a witness against himself” is violated by this action.
The Bill suggested that using force to get biological data may result in narcoanalysis and brain mapping.
The proposed rule “violated the Right to be Forgottenenshrined in the Right to Life under Article 21 of the Constitution,” and it also calls for keeping people’s measurements for 75 years following the date of collection.
Since the term “biological samples” is not further defined, it could refer to bodily invasions such the removal of hair or blood or the gathering of DNA samples. These are actions that currently call for a magistrate’s written approval.
The Bill suggests that samples be taken from demonstrators participating in political demonstrations. The right to privacy is violated.
Strong data protection regulations with severe penalties for violations are urgently needed.
Given that pre-legislative consultation has already been completed, the measure has to be sent to a Standing Committee for additional review before becoming law.
Additionally, steps must be taken to improve how the law is applied.
More forensic labs, technology, and experts are required to analyse the measurements taken at the crime scene in order to identify potential defendants in a criminal prosecution.
Prioritisation must also be given to the training of detectives, prosecutors, and judges, as well as to the cooperation with medical professionals and forensic experts.
Q2. Consider why, despite a fast rate of growth and promising future, MSMEs have encountered obstacles that have prevented them from reaching their full potential. (250 words).
Paper & Topic: GS III à Indian Economy
Micro, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSME), known as India’s “engine of growth,” have contributed significantly to the expansion of the nation through generating employment possibilities. All areas of the economy have been affected by the Covid-19 outbreak, but the Indian MSMEs (Medium, Small and Micro Enterprises) have been hit the most.
In order to ease their suffering, the government and Reserve Bank of India (RBI) have lately started a number of initiatives.
The MSME sector in India has potential:
Contribution to GDP: It is estimated that MSMEs account for around 32% of the nation’s gross value added.
Export Leverage: It also generates roughly 40% of all exports and 45% of industrial output.
Opportunities for Employment: It employs 60 million people, generates 1.3 million new employment annually, and manufactures more than 8000 high-quality goods for the Indian and global markets.
Diversity: India has about 30 million small and medium-sized businesses (MSME Units), and there is a wide variety of diversity among them in terms of size, level of technology used, scope of goods and services offered, and target markets.
Fostering Inclusive Growth: MSME promotes non-agricultural livelihood at the lowest possible cost, impartial regional development, significant female participation, and offering a deflationary protection, among other strategies.
The difficulties and worries posed by the expansion of the MSME sector
According to the Economic Survey (2017–18), the MSME sector has a serious issue securing enough finance to expand their operations.
The survey had noted that only 17.4% of the total outstanding loans had gone to MSMEs.
The majority of banks are hesitant to lend to MSMEs because, in the eyes of bankers, these businesses lack experience, have poor financials, collateral, and infrastructure.
In 2018 research, the International Finance Corporation found that less than one-third (or roughly Rs 11 lakh crore) of the credit MSME credit demand that it might possibly fund is provided by the conventional banking system.
This fact is essential because it explains why the Reserve Bank of India’s efforts to push additional liquidity towards the MSMEs have had a limited impact. The majority of MSME funding comes from informal sources.
Lack of infrastructure:
MSMEs’ production capacity is very low and their production costs are quite expensive due to insufficient infrastructure.
access to contemporary technology
Lack of technological expertise and budgetary limitations restrict access to current technology, which keeps technological adoption at a low level.
Getting to markets:
MSMEs have limited market access. Comparatively speaking, their sales promotion and advertising are weaker than those of other large enterprises and global corporations.
It is challenging for them to compete with big businesses because of their inadequate advertising and weak marketing strategies.
Obtaining legislative permissions for labour, environment, and power are significant obstacles.
The laws governing every area of the industrial and service industries are extremely complicated, making compliance challenging.
Lack of qualified personnel:
With regard to the growth of MSME’s, training and development programmes have been. As a result, MSMEs have experienced a persistent shortage of competent labour.
low use of ICT.
a little market share.
certification or assurance of quality.
certification or assurance of quality.
To enter new markets, items should be standardised and marketing strategies should be effective.
Recently, the Union Cabinet authorised a World Bank-supported initiative on “Raising and Accelerating MSME Performance” (RAMP) for USD 808 million, or Rs 6,062.45 crore.
The Indian government and banks should develop strategies and initiatives to increase easy, hassle-free credit access.
The RBI should implement strict non-performing asset (NPA) standards because they will deter defaulters on loans and encourage the collection of prospective good debts. Additionally, opponents claim that the SIDBI-run Credit Guarantee Scheme for MSME (CGTMSE) is an expanding contingent liability that requires urgent review.
To promote the growth and development of MSMEs, the government should improve the development and upgrading of the current rail and road network as well as other infrastructural amenities in less developed and rural areas.
The right amount of research and development should be done in relation to new manufacturing and service delivery methods. The government should also support and encourage technical know-how for Micro and small businesses.
To recover the growth of sick units, the government should promote procurement programmes, credit and performance ratings, and comprehensive marketing support.
One of the most important steps to boost the sector’s production is to teach MSME employees and expand their skills. The government should place a strong emphasis on programmes for training and skill development.
The Centre has redefined MSMEs, financial access, subordinate debt, and preference in government bids in order to “energise the MSME sector” through the implementation of Aatmanirbhar Bharat.
Additionally, the MSME Udyam portal has been launched, albeit registration is not required. It is important to bridge the information gap on government initiatives and registration incentives.
To increase their market access, diversify their clientele, and strengthen their supply chain, MSMEs must better integrate themselves into the digital economy.
Leveraging technology will assist business, the Indian economy, and MSMEs, which would increase employment and have a good knock-on effect on the GDP of the country.
In India’s wage-protection rule-books, there is no mention of the traditional concept of apprenticeship, which entails part-time labour and is a commonly used skill-building practise, particularly in weaving, handicraft and manufacturing units. This error may be corrected by applying the regulations of the Social Security Act, the Wage Code, or possibly the Shops and Establishments Act, as appropriate.
The emphasis should be on high-quality production, the use of automation to improve processes, and the investigation of new markets via e-commerce.
This would necessitate a comprehensive strategy that involved assisting the sector’s current manufacturers, giving managers and their workforces the necessary training, and educating them on new technologies and standardisation norms, all while exposing them to new market opportunities and inspiring confidence in them that the nation’s ecosystem would support their expansion plans.
It is important to encourage new MSMEs in particular to start off with this advantage.
We will be able to provide suitable work opportunities not only in India but also around the world thanks to skill-based training programmes that take into account industry-specific needs. Developed nations require skilled labour across a range of sectors, including manufacturing, software, and healthcare.
Indian policies need to be reviewed in order to eliminate inconsistencies and to encourage small businesses to use e-commerce platforms.
As a result, the Indian MSME sector serves as the foundation of the country’s economic system and protects it from external shocks and adversities by acting as a bulwark. Given the sector’s crucial position in the economy, problems it faces must be resolved quickly if the economy is to recover from the pandemic’s damage. In addition to fiscal stimulus, the sector needs a political-economic strategy that puts MSME interests first. India must lessen the regulatory load on small businesses and assist their survival financially. They require level playing fields most of all with regard to large corporations.
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