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The Coal Economy: Untold Story of Singrauli (Infrastructure in the region)

Singrauli is largely remote and cut off from the rest of the country. While it enjoys road connectivity to near by urban centres such as Varanasi, Jabalpur, Satna, Rewa, Sidhi etc., such connectivity is extraordinarily painstaking considering the condition of roads. In addition to a largely bad road connectivity, it also has rail connectivity to major Urban centres around it. This includes connectivity to various urban centres around the region such as Jabalpur, Bhopal, Varanasi and Allahabad. However, trains are seldom frequent and due to the single track most of the journeys are quite long. In addition to that a lot of coal, cement and other ores queried in the region are also transported by goods trains and trucks. This makes both modes of transport quite congested and time taken for an average journey is awfully long.

The air transport infrastructure is absent in the area. Except for a helipad, which is controlled by Northern Coalfields Limited and a private airstrip at Mirpur, and an airport under construction at Katauli village near district headquarters in Waidhan, there is nothing much. There are no daily flights or chopper services to the region. Only industries in the region use air services to ferry their senior management. (more…)

The Coal Economy: Untold Story of Singrauli (History)

I will talk about the administrative and political history of the region. In addition to this I will also look at economic landscape of the region with particular emphasis on coal related projects. While I will start with a description of the area prior to industrialization, I will undertake a comprehensive analysis of almost every comprehensively in a chronological order.

The area in the eastern part of the state of Madhya Pradesh and the adjoining southern part of Sonebhadra district in the state of UP is collectively known as Singrauli. Further, it also includes some parts of Chhattisgarh. Singrauli is emerging as India’s energy capital. The place earlier known as Shringavali, named after the sage Shringi, was once covered with dense and unnavigable forests and inhabited by wild animals. The place was considered so treacherous that it was used by the kings of Rewa State, who ruled the area till 1947, as an open air prison for detaining errant civilians and officers. It was sparsely populated with population whose life revolved around agriculture. The region had rich and fertile soil good for cultivation of rice and some of the best qualities of wheat. The population of the region was also dependent to an extent on the local forest produce. The forests did not just provide fire wood to the local population but also other useful produce such as mahua (used for making local alcohol), kaneer, turmeric, mango, banyan, teak, sakhu or sal, jackfruit tree, bamboo, khair or acasia etc. Animals such as white tiger, leopard, lion etc. were in abundant. The forests of Rewa state were known for their state of the art hunting experience for princes of adjacent states and senior officials of the British administration. The forests were treated as commons by the local population, i.e. a forest around a village will be a resource common to all the people residing in that village. This was perhaps so prior to enactment of the Indian Forest Act of 1878. After enactment of this legislation the rulers of Rewa drew inspiration and declared the forests in the region as their property for scientific management of the local forests. However, except to a limited extent, forests were treated in practise as commons till about 1947 when the Indian Forest Act of 1927 came to be applicable to the . Subsequent changes to the regulation of forest were brought about by the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972, Madhya Pradesh Tendu Patta (Vyapar Viniyaman) Adhiniyam, 1964, Madhya Pradesh Vanopaj (Vyapar Viniyaman), Adhiniyam, 1969, Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980, and Madhya Pradesh Kashtha Chiran Adhiniyam, 1984. (more…)

The Coal Economy: Untold story of Singrauli (series of articles)

The coal economy is a series of articles taken from a working paper seeking to undertake legal analysis of various general events in the coal rich and perhaps the biggest industrial region in the whole of South-Asia. This paper seeks to deal with legal particulars pertaining to the society of Singrauli, its economy, environment, and politics. The objective of the working paper and consequently the series of articles is to develop a comprehensive view about Singrauli, with a particular emphasis on Coal mining industry in the region. In addition to this we also seek to present a comprehensive legal analysis of the various aspects particular to the region. In order to achieve the same, we have undertaken a comprehensive research in general order of the society in Singrauli, politics of the region, Coal mining industry here and legal particulars such as policy, statutes governing mining and rulings of various courts in various matters have been relied upon to construct a true picture of the scenario in the region. (more…)

Medhauli Land Scam in Northern Coal Fields Limited

“power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely!”

Coal India Limited is an Indian government owned Public Sector Undertaking. It has many subsidiary companies i.e. Northern Coalfields Limited(NCL), Central Coalfields Limited (CCL), Eastern Coalfields Limited(ECL).Western Coalfiels limited (WCL), Mahanadi Coalfields Limited(MCL),North Eastern Coalfields Limited(NECL).

Northern Coalfields Limited (NCL) is a subsidiary company of Coal India Limited. One thing separates it from other subsidiaries of Coal India Limited is it has very large projects. All of its coal mines are highly mechanized Open Cast Coal Mines. Jayant Project is one of its mega projects. It produces 15 Million tones of Coal annually. Unfortunately all most all the coal seams in India are situated in dense forests belts. To keep these coal mines running, Coal India has to acquire hundreds of acre land from time to time. There are three types of land involved in the process i.e. (1)tenancy land(2)government land(3) forest land. (more…)

Iran’s nuclear programme

Non-Proliferation Treaty (hereinafter NPT) is the instrument that basically controls proliferation of nuclear technology. It has three pillars. These include the non-proliferation, disarmament and right to peaceful use. Hence, under the NPT regime every country enjoys enrichment rights for peaceful and civilian purpose.[1] As per Article IV of the NPT, all states that are a party to the NPT have an inalienable right to develop, research and produce and use nuclear technology for peaceful purpose.[2] This clause could perhaps considered to be the legal basis, in international law, of all the issues pertaining to Iran’s nuclear programme. It is under this provision of NPT that Iran claims a right to develop its domestic, peaceful and conceivably civilian nuclear programme.[3] Iran claims that it has a right to engage in uranium enrichment as long as it is for peaceful purpose. However relying on other facts such as Iran’s non-compliance with disclosure of particulars of its programme to IAEA and indulging in enrichment of uranium to weapon grade, have raised many eyebrows.[4] These have been considered to be instances of violation of Article II and Article III of the NPT. Under these two article, Non- nuclear weapon sates are not allowed to either receive nuclear weapon technology or to develop the same in any manner.[5]

(more…)

Aviation Sector in India

Indian aviation sector has emerged as a major growth sector since liberalization. There has been a substantial overall growth of aviation traffic. It is estimated to have frown at the rate of over 16 percent and Airbus estimates that domestic aviation sector alone is likely to use more than 800 aircrafts by 2020. In addition to this, reliable reports from Boeing estimate that demand for aircraft is going to touch about 1,740 in the next 20 years. The net value will approximate to $240 billion. Hence, if this data was anything to go by, India would account for 4.3% of the overall global volume. At present also India stands at 9th position in the world in terms of aviation traffic. It is estimated that overall aviation traffic in India in 2015-16 was about 13.5 crore passengers. While number of aircrafts and the way airlines operate is an important part of this sector, another important aspect are the airports. In this post I will be looking at the overall aviation sector with a special emphasis on regulation of airport infrastructure. Further, through the post I will be undertaking a descriptive methodology.

(more…)

Introduction to Competition Law: A Historical Perspective

 

As per the definition of the World Bank issued in 1999, in its report deliberating upon the status of various nations with respect to competition protecting legislations, the term competition was defined to mean “a situation in a market in which firms or sellers independently strive for the buyers’ patronage in order to achieve a particular business objective for example, profits, sales or market share.” While this appears to be a fairly straight forward definition, real intricacies pop up when one seeks to deal with various methods adopted by various market players to seek such patronage. It is in this context that the majority of completion related regulations have developed over the centuries and it is perhaps in this context that competition related legislations are made in the modern times. A quick look even through the definition sections of the competition act of 2003 perhaps tells us that law revolves around the context of methodology adopted in the process of trade. Father such methodology is assessed against against the fundamental parameter of actions taken by other market players within the relevant market.

(more…)

Camel back rider of UAE

UAE may be one of the most developed and by far the most stable state in middle east. Indeed it has invested substantially in its overall stability and infrastructure thus ensuring a relatively desirable business environment. Along with raising endless cities and amazing wonders in terms of almost everything, its oil economy has brought endless prosperity to the citizens. However, there is perhaps an undesirable can rather expensive cost associated with this development.

(more…)

The leftist media bias!

https://www.prageru.com/courses/political-science/what-fake-news

This video gets into particulars of a fake news and explains the basics of a method to analyse a fake news. Interestingly it specifically targets left inclined media and talks from a right biased perspective. While we are least interested in ideological inclination of multi-billion dollar US media groups, what really interests us is the method and three pillar test to determine fake news!

Regulating online advertising

Online advertising could easily be the biggest industry terms of advertising volume. As per data retrieved from PWC, Internet advertising industry stands at an approximate $ 200 billion in 2017-18 and is likely to surge at a rate of 10.8% over the coming years with Asia-Pacific leading the growth and United States still being the largest market in 2021. This industry is a direct outcome of the internet revolution and numerous opportunities it has to offer. Online advertising industry in particular has moved over the years from publisher centric approach to network centric approach and ultimately to a data centric model. This new data centric model is also referred to as Online Behavioural Advertising (hereinafter called OBA). OBA is based on reconstructing an individual’s or a group’s behavioural profile depending upon multiple variables such as their location, search queries, friends, shares online, and past behaviour. In terms of technological terminology it involves usage of cookies, flash cookies, browser fingerprinting, mobile devices variable, deep packet inspection and history sniffing. The outcome of this process is then linked to advertising and only relevant advertisements are shown to the users, thus increasing the probability of achieving intended goal of advertising.

From the perspective of societal values and accepted norms, OBA produces a grave challenge to privacy of users. As a matter of fact privacy debate is at the heart of all proposals of regulations of the online advertising industry. The proponents of OBA argue that it is an efficient form of advertising as users are served only the advertisements that serve their needs and are in accordance of their interests. This results in saving time and valuable money on advertising, thus saving resources for generating free content. In addition to this they also argue that it is a consent game. That is to say that user’s trade off their privacy for subsidised or free content. This, the proponents argue is the best method for subsidising online experience for users. On the other hand opponents of free and unregulated OBA argue that it is violate of an individual’s privacy. In addition to this they are also of the belief that mixing of content and advertising results in bubble effect that subsequently results in ill-informed users and thus a polarised society. Thus at a very rudimentary level it is a cost benefit analysis debate between the cost of and benefits to be reaped out of OBA. From the perspective of regulation of industry it these seems to be the question whether industry has to be regulated at all or not. If it is to be regulated, the important question is whether to what extent?

In this essay I analysing the above given stream of arguments and the effectiveness of the same in terms of their adoption in popular jurisprudence of various jurisdictions. For the purpose of this essay, I will be looking at European Union, United States and India. This is to be done with the objective of coming to a conclusion about the exact nature of current regulatory regime and determining its overall nature.

The origin of this debate lay at different levels in different jurisdictions. European Union has been at forefront of imposing regulations with respect to privacy protection over the internet. It initiated with data protection directive adopted in 1995. This was subsequently followed by multiple amendments to the main document. However there was no major change. It was by General Data Protection Regulation issued in 2016 that unit data protection for all individuals was strengthened. This regulation broadened the definition of private data and created an integrated framework with respect to regulation of private data. In addition to this, it created the concept of privacy shield for data of EU citizens that is to be transferred over to other jurisdiction, particularly the United States. In terms of OBA, it prescribes that the advertiser has to take explicit consent of the user. Earlier the consent was only an implicit consent with an opt-out option. In terms of cost benefit analysis, there is substantial research to suggest that opt-in mechanism makes it much more difficult for the advertisers to take consent from users. As a matter of fact, there are initial figures indicating inefficient trends in overall OBA in EU. However, it seems that European Parliament is much more inclined to protect the identity of its citizens than secure interests of OBA firms. It is also interesting to note that EU laws find no mention of polarisation and bubble implications of content mixed targeted advertising.

In US privacy related risks were pitched on multiple occasions by Federal Trade Commission (Hereinafter called FTC). FTC in the initial days of online advertising declared that user protection was its major goal. In 1999 FTC conducted its first workshop on online profiling and subsequently presented a report of the same to the congress in 2000. Subsequent to this there were multiple attempts by FTC at regulating OBA industry.f However, due to efforts by advertising lobby attempts to regulate industry remained at large. The best that could be achieved was a self-regulating mechanism imposed upon itself by the industry. Currently there is no legal framework to regulate OBA in united stated except for some self-imposed guidelines that are seldom followed as per FTC report of 2010. In addition to this there is an absence of any formal enforcement mechanism. However, self-imposed regulations and FTC guidelines prescribe for informing the users about their private data being sued by the website and giving them an opt-out option. In context of our primary debate it seems that OBA industry has been able to successfully secure its interests in US and jurisprudence is leaning towards consent based privacy violation regime. In addition to this, in USA also we do not find any reference to polarisation of the society and bubble effect.

In the Indian context the privacy debate is still immature. Privacy and online advertising is at best covered under information technology act. Section 43 A of the Information Technology (Amendment) Act, 2008 defines civil liability for releasing of private information in a manner that causes some harm to the user or holder of such information. In addition to this personal information is defined under the information technology rules, 2011. However, this does not bar personal information from being used for OBA advertising. It merely prescribes for punishment for wrongful usage of personally identifiable information. Thus in the Indian context debate is premature. While jurisprudence shows signs of leaning towards a privacy security model, there are no signs of any form of regulation of OBA firms.

Notice, choice/consent, integrity, access and redress seem the five free data concepts at the forefront of privacy advocates. On the other hand OBA lobby still focuses on efficiency, contractual arrangement between users and subsidised online content. Idea of bubble effect and polarisation still seem to be at a nascent stage and hasn’t been relevant in the larger debate. Various debates and laws indicates towards a general tone of acceptance of important privacy norms and regulation of OBA, but to what extent is unclear. It seems that a concrete jurisprudential outcome will only be achieved after a grandiose tussle between OBA firms and privacy rights advocates.

 

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[1] Available at https://www.pwc.com/gx/en/industries/entertainment-media/outlook/segment-insights/internet-advertising.html (Last visited on July 24, 2017).

[1] Whitepaper on Data-Centric Middleware, Model Software Infrastructure to Monitor,Control and Collect real Time Equipment Analysis, RTI, Available at https://www.rti.com/hubfs/docs/RTI_Data_Centric_Middleware.pdf (Last visited on July 24, 2017).

[1] S. C. Bennett, Regulating Online Behavioural Advertising, 44 John Marshall law Review 899 (2011), 44(4) 899, 900 (2011).

[1] Id.

[1] J. Polonetsky, To Track or Do not Track: Advertising Transparency and Individual Control in online Behavioural Advertising, 13(1) Minnesota Journal of Law, Science & Technology, 281, 290 (2012).

[1] Supra note 3, at 906.

[1] Supra note 5, at 291.

[1] Supra note 5, at 291.

[1] Supra note 5, at 291.

[1] Supra note 3, at 906.

[1] Supra note 3, at 906.

[1] Directive 95/46/EC, On Protection of Individuals with Regards to Processing of Personal Data and Free movement of such Data (1995).

[1] Regulation (EU) 2016/679, General Data Protection Regulation (2016).

[1] Available at https://www.commerce.gov/sites/commerce.gov/files/media/files/2016/eu-us_privacy_shield_fact_sheet.pdf (Last Visited on July, 25, 2017).

[1] Id.

[1] Available at http://www.businessinsider.in/The-online-advertising-industry-is-about-to-be-severely-disrupted-its-the-amputation-of-a-significant-revenue-stream/articleshow/50204800.cms (Last Visited on July, 25, 2017).

[1] Supra note 3, at 903.

[1] Fighting Back Against Identity Theft, F.T.C., http://www.ftc.gov/bcpledulmicro sites/idtheft/business/publications.html (last visited Oct. 2, 2011); see also Privacy and Security, F.T.C., http://business.ftc.gov/privacy-andsecurity (last visited Oct. 2, 2011) (providing access to behavioral advertising information)

[1] F.T.C., ONLINE PROFILING: A REPORT TO CONGRESS (June 2000), available at http://www.ftc.govos/2000/06/onlineprofilingreportjune2O00.pdf [hereinafter, FTC 2000 REPORT].

[1] See IAN C. BALLON, E-COMMERCE & INTERNET LAW: TREATISES WITH FORMS, § 26.05 (2010).

[1] Available at https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/advertising-marketing-internet-rules-road (Last visited on July 25, 2017).

[1] The Information Technology (Reasonable Security Practice and Procedure and Personal Data or Information) Rules, 2011.

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