Social policy Current Affairs - 2020

National List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of India launched

On April 18, 2020, the Union Minister of culture Shri Prahlad Singh Patel launched the National List of Intangible Cultural Heritage. The list is to include 13 elements that are already included in UNESCO Representative list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Highlights

The initiative is a part of Vision 2024 of Ministry of Culture. It aims to increase the awareness about intangible cultural heritages. The list will recognize the diversity in Indian Culture. The list already has 100 elements. However, the Ministry updates the list regularly.

UNESCO

According to UNESCO’s Convention for safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage held in 2003, there are 5 broad categories in the list. They are performing arts, rituals and festive events, social practices, knowledge and practices concerned with nature and traditional craftmanship.

What is Intangible Cultural Heritage?

The ICH is representation, practice, knowledge, expression of skills. It involves non-physical intellectual property such as beliefs, folklore, traditions, customs and language.

Malaysia to abolish the death penalty for all crimes

Malaysia’s Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has agreed to abolish death penalty for all crimes and halt pending executions. This decision was taken in pursuance of strong domestic opposition to colonial practice for being barbarous and unimaginably cruel which has put terrible stain on the country’s human rights record. It is also in line with move away from capital punishment in the rest of the world.

Key Facts

Currently capital punishment in Malaysia is mandatory for murder, kidnapping, possession of firearms, treason and drug trafficking, among other crimes. The death penalty in Malaysia is exclusively carried out by hanging and has been legacy of British colonial rule. More than 1200 people are on death row in Malaysia.

Background

At present, the sentence of death penalty has been abolished in 103 countries, while penalty of capital punishment is still in 56 countries. There are still provisions for capital punishment in countries like China, India, America, Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Japan and Sri Lanka. United Nations General Assembly passed the resolution in 62nd session in 2007 to impose universal restrictions on the death penalty.