The Supreme Court today questioned the issuance of black
warrants by trial courts for execution of death penalty even before the
expiry of 60-day time period for filing of appeals in the apex court by the
The top court's observation came during the hearing of an
appeal, filed by death row convict Anil Surendra Singh Yadav, alleging that the
black warrant was issued by a Gujarat sessions court just 33 days after his
conviction was upheld by the high court.
Yadav was convicted for rape and murder of a three-year old girl
in 2018 in Surat. A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde stayed the execution
of Yadav's death warrant.
The bench, also comprising Justices B R Gavai and Surya Kant,
wondered as to how trial courts issue death warrants despite there being a
reported judgement of the apex court, passed in 2015, that black warrants cannot
be issued before the expiry of 60-day statutory period for filing an appeal in
the Supreme Court against the high court verdict.
The Chief Justice of India said, there has been a clamour on the
delay in execution of death penalty in rape and murder cases and here a sessions
court issued the death warrant before the expiry of the statutory period.
Credit rating agency ICRA has revised the outlook on the
Indian pharmaceutical industry from ‘stable’ to ‘negative’ as it does not
rule out the possibility of lockouts in parts of China — due to the outbreak
of COVID-19 — impacting profitability of drugmakers in India.
ICRA said the industry was highly dependent on imports. Over 60%
of its active pharmaceutical ingredients’ requirement are met through imports
and in some specific Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) like
cephalosporins, azithromycin and penicillin, the dependence is as high as
80-90%. Of the total imports of APIs and intermediates into India, China
accounted for around 65-70%.
“The situation is more alarming in the case of intermediates of
stages prior to APIs and key starting materials (KSMs) which are the building
blocks for the drugs, wherein, in some cases, China is the exclusive supplier.
Also, for some input materials, even if alternative sources are available, China
remains the preferred source given the economical rates,” ICRA said.
The agency said “domestic API manufacturers have an inventory of
1-2 months, which should support their production till mid-March 2020.
Continuation of the virus [impact] beyond mid-March may adversely impact
production of these API manufacturers, possibly leading to a complete halt of
production for some smaller players.”
The world’s second-biggest Operation Control Centre for
goods trains, built in India by the Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation
of India (DFCCIL) is ready to begin operations, and is likely to be
inaugurated by Prime Minister NarendraModi at the end of this month, a
senior company official said on Thursday.
The centre, built at Prayagraj in Uttar Pradesh, will be the
‘nerve-centre’ of the over 1,800 km-long eastern dedicated freight corridor, the
corporation’s MD AnuragSachan said on Thursday.
The control centre has a theater which measures 1560 sq m, with
a video wall of more than 90 m and will be used as a one-stop shop for
controlling and monitoring rail systems, including train operations and the
power supply system.
The Dedicated Freight Corridor, touted as one of the biggest
infrastructure projects in the country, is a 3,360 km stretch consisting of the
Eastern and Western corridors. The Eastern corridor, which is being funded by
the World Bank, will run from Ludhiana in Punjab to Dankuni near Kolkata,
traversing Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand.
Mr.Sachan said that the Western corridor will have a similar
operation control system at Ahmedabad.For the Eastern corridor, targeted to be
completed by December 2021, The World Bank loan stands at about $1.86 billion.
The MD added that once operational, the freight corridor will
help decongest the existing Indian Railway network, while also helping increase
the average speed of goods trains to 70 kmph, from the existing 25 kmph.
‘It will connect the existing ports and industrial areas for
faster movement of goods and will help increase the rail share in freight
transportation from the existing 30% to 45%,” Mr.Sachan said.
In Sri Lanka, a parliamentary oversight committee has
recommended ban on face-covering attire including burqa and to suspend the
registration of political parties on ethnic and religious basis.
The sectoral oversight committee on National security made the
suggestions in a special report presented to the Parliament offering solutions
to 14 controversial issues following the Easter attacks.
The report points out that currently many countries have banned
the burqa and that the ISIS headquarters in Syria too banned the attire on
September 5, 2019. It suggests that the police should have the authority to
arrest any person who is willing to uncover their face at a public place when
needed to establish identity.
The report also called that all students studying in madrasas
institutions should be absorbed into the normal school system within a period of
The report contains recommendations on 14 areas including
formulating a National Security Policy addressing the challenges of possible
future terrorist attacks, amending Immigration and Emigration Law, monitoring of
electronic, print & social media, amending the Muslim Marriage and Divorce Act,
empowering the Muslim civil society, establishing dhamma schools to ensure
inter-religious harmony and regulating of madrasas curriculum. The committee was
set up following Easter Sunday attacks last year in which over 260 people were