Answers: Mains Marathon – UPSC Mains Current Affairs Questions – January 8, 2018


Q.1) Cross border marriages is very common phenomenon in recent times. Discuss the impact on Children from break down of cross border marriages. Why a domestic law in this regard is necessary? (GS-1)

More than three crores of Indians live in the foreign countries, having cross border matrimonial relationships.

Impact on Children from break down of cross border marriages:

  • When such a kind of diverse family unit breaks down, children (sometimes babies) suffer, as they are dragged into international legal battle between their parents.
  • Children from such a marriage suffer as they are dragged into an international legal battle between their parents.
  • Inter-spousal child removal can be termed as most unfortunate as the children are abducted by their own parents to India or to other foreign jurisdiction in violation of the interim/final orders of the competent courts or in violation of parental rights of the aggrieved parent.
  • The child is taken to a State with a different legal system, culture and language.
  • The child loses contact with the other parent and is transplanted in an entirely different society having different traditions and norms of life.

Why a domestic law in this regard is necessary?

  • There is no codified family law or specific child custody laws under which children can be returned to their homes in a foreign jurisdiction.
  • An aggrieved parent with a foreign court order requiring return of the child finds no slot in the Indian legal system, wherein a wholesome statutory remedy can be invoked for effective relief.
  • The Indian legal system provides succour by invoking the habeas corpus writ.
  • Bitter disputed custody battles requiring conventional evidence to be established fall under the outdated Guardians and Wards Act, 1890.

Q.2)India as one of the biggest food producing hub in the world but recently food processing industry in India are not able to take off. In this context discuss the issues facing food processing industry in India. What needs to be done to solve the issues? (GS-3)

India is one of the biggest food producing hub in the world but recently food processing industry in India is not showing the desired results.

Issues involved in food processing industry:

  • India not able to  increase the export of food processing export because of issues generated by advance economy which impacts out export potential.
  • In domestic sector the problems are associated with poor storage and warehousing facilities and lack of dedicated institution to promote post-harvest activity in India.
  • Lot of inorganic chemicals is being in India to produce farm product which needs to be replaced with organic component.
  • The international standards do not allow export of Indian farm product because of high inorganic components.
  • The public investment in agriculture is another issue that needs to be addressed.
  • In India agriculture is being done without focusing on quality and MNCs are very focus on quality of farm produce and law abiding.
  • However, the local companies do not care about law and hence there is a challenge of regulatory environment to implement the laws related with tonnage limitation on transportation of farm produce, disposal of waste etc.
  • The domestic industries have immense potential – $ 10 Billion food processing market which is to be increase in recent year.
  • An unproductive cattle is increasingly not been sold in the cattle mandis.
  • Cattle mandis in North India are getting more deserted.

What needs to be done?

  • India is importing $ 22 Billion of food processing product from foreign market. If we substitute our farm product with diversification of agriculture with a focus on second Green Revolution.
  • Food habit in world is changing and with diversification of crop pattern that will concentrate not only new food items, new seeds, technology but also competes with the global food giants such as USA and China.
  • India is agrarian economy and the large farmers of India have potential to diversify their crop pattern.
  • There is a lot of diversity in farm productivity among the states.
  • Many states such as Punjab, Haryana has high crop productivity as compared to other states. Thus, by adopting measures to increase farm productivity   to give a big push to food processing sector.
  • Adaptation of good practices of major food processing successful ventures such as Amul, Nestle, Haldiram, Bikanerwals etc.
  • Indian food processing market is as good as foreign market and by promoting domestic food processing industries and branding their product in international market will boost the food processing sector in India.

Q.3)  Large population of Indians live in the foreign countries, having cross border matrimonial relationship. In this context discuss the significance of the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. Why India does not want to ratify the Convention?

More than three crores of Indians live in the foreign countries, having cross border matrimonial relationships

Hague Convention and its significance:

The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction:

  • It is a multilateral treaty on custodial issues of children.
  • The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is an intergovernmental agreement that deals with issues related to parental kidnapping or child abduction for children under the  age of 16 years  across international borders.
  • The Convention seeks to protect children from the harmful effects of abduction and retention across international boundaries by providing a procedure to ensure their prompt return.
  • The convention is intended to enhance the international recognition of rights of custody and access arising in place of habitual residence, and to ensure prompt return of the child who is wrongfully removed or retained from the place of habitual residence.
  • It seeks to return children abducted or retained overseas by a parent to their country of habitual residence for the courts of that country to decide on matters of residence and contact.
  • Over 90 countries are signatories to it, India is yet to sign it.
  • The Purpose of the Convention is to secure the effective right of access to a child

The reasons for India not ratifying the treaty are as follows:

  • The ratification of the convention makes it obligatory for India to recognise a foreign judgment automatically irrespective of its ethical standards or dimensions.
  • The ratification would be dissatisfactory for all Indian women who returned home with their children after conflict with their husbands abroad, as it would force them to go back to the foreign country for settlement purpose.
  • As per the treaty all countries which are party to the convention must establish a central authority to trace unlawfully removed children and secure their return to the country of habitual residence, irrespective of the country’s own laws on the issue. But India still doesn’t have any such central authority. Also, this is not acceptable to Indians because we don’t recognise foreign judgements automatically.
  • The convention use the word “abduction”, and in most cases of so-called “parental abduction”, parents take away the child because “of the fear of losing his/her custody”, which is not forceful in nature but out of overwhelming love and affection. Such cases would pose Legal vs. Ethical Issues.
  • Another challenge is based on the superiority of the courts, that is, which court, the one in the country of habitual residence, or the one where the child has been removed, will be the final authority to decide the custody of the child in case of conflict between the judgements of the two.
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