Collegium System: It is the system of appointment and transfer of judges that has evolved through judgments of the SC, and not by an Act of Parliament or by a provision of the Constitution. The SC collegium is headed by the CJI and comprises four other senior most judges of the court. A HC collegium is led by its Chief Justice and four other senior most judges of that court. Names recommended for appointment by a HC collegium reaches the government only after approval by the CJI and the SC collegium.
Chakmas and Hajongs : were originally residents of Chittagong Hill Tracts in the erstwhile East Pakistan. They left their homeland when it was submerged by the Kaptai dam project in the 1960s. The Chakmas, who are Buddhists, and the Hajongs, who are Hindus, also allegedly faced religious persecution and entered India through the then Lushai Hills district of Assam (now Mizoram). The Centre moved the majority of them to the North East Frontier Agency (NEFA), which is now Arunachal Pradesh. Their numbers have gone up from about 5,000 in 1964-69 to one lakh. At present, they don’t have citizenship and land rights but are provided basic amenities by the state government.
Assylum law: Though India has not signed the United Nations Refugee Convention, 1951, Justice Kumar said the refugees and asylum seekers were entitled to the rights in Articles 14, 20 and 21 of the Constitution. The Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, also known as the 1951 Refugee Convention or the Geneva Convention of 28 July 1951, is a United Nations multilateral treaty that defines who a refugee is, and sets out the rights of individuals who are granted asylum and the responsibilities of nations that grant asylum. The Convention also sets out which people do not qualify as refugees, such as war criminals.
Bent-toed gecko: A team of herpetologists have recorded a new species of bent-toed gecko from a wooded part of the Umroi Military Station in Meghalaya. Its scientific name is Crytodactylus exercitusand English name is Indian Army’s bent-toed gecko. Exercitus in Latin means army. The name was given to honour the Army for its services to the country. The military station where the bent-toed gecko was discovered was also a factor behind its name.
Great Backyard bird count: The GBBC is a global event entailing backyard bird count and is being held for four days across the world from February 18 to 21 and the data uploaded will be harnessed for conservation. It is being coordinated in India by e-bird India and Birdcount-India. It is being held at Kukkarahalli Lake, Hebbala Lake, Karanji Lake, Muganahundi Lake, Lingambudhi lake and Thippaiayana Kere. The exercise helps to provide a “snap shot” of the bird population and throws light on the ecosystem supporting it.
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