Global Talent Competitiveness Index 

Paper: III

For Prelims:

For Mains: Indian Economy and issues relating to Planning, Mobilization of Resources, Growth, Development and Employment.

Context of News:

  • India climbed eight positions in a year to reach rank 72 in the Global Talent Competitive Index (GTCI) 2020.
  • The index is based on research done by INSEAD in partnership with The Adecco Group and Google.

About the Report:

  • Report finds that gap between high income, talent-rich nations and the rest of the world is widening; more than half of the population in the developing world lack basic digital skills.
  • The Global Talent Competitiveness Index (GTCI) 2020, released at the World Economic Forum in Davos, reveals that Switzerland continues to lead the world in talent competitiveness, having held the number one spot since the Index was launched in 2013, and the US moves from third place to second, pushing Singapore down one place compared to 2019.
  • Switzerland, USA and Singapore took the top-three positions in GTCI 2020.
  • The report, which measures countries based on six pillars —
  1. enable
  2. attract
  3. grow
  4. retain talent
  5. vocation and technical skills
  6. global knowledge skills
  • India‘s ranking is 44 in growing talent — highest position among six pillars. “India’s key strength relates to growing talent, primarily by virtue of the possibilities for lifelong learning and access to growth opportunities. Its highest-ranked sub-pillar, however, is employability, but the ability to match labour market demand and supply stands in contrast to the country’s poor mid-level skills which result in a mediocre score in vocational and technical skills.

Challenges for India:

  • India’s poor ability to attract and retain talent is its greatest challenge.
  • India’s low scores in the indicators that relate to the quality of life (lifestyle) fall well short of its more positive showing in sustainability.
  • India’s greatest challenge is to address its weak ability to attract (92nd) and retain (95th) talent. With regard to the former pillar, there is a need to strengthen the role of minorities and women in order to raise the level of Internal Openness (104th).

Way Forward:

  • India needs to strengthen the role of minorities and women in order to raise the level of Internal Openness to attract talent. India need to focus on Internal Openness with respect to the tolerance of minorities, immigrants, and opportunity to improve their economic situation through their personal efforts regardless of the socioeconomic status of their parents, female graduates, and disparities between men and women in health, knowledge, and living standards.
  • India should constantly investing in skill development and robust digitalisation. It is as imperative for the corporates to build comprehensive digital business strategies as it is for the talent to be adaptable to rapid transformations and relevant for the new requirements.
  • Retaining talent is necessary to ensure sustainability, and one of the main components of retention is quality of life, that should be given more thrust.
  • For India, more could be done to improve the country’s educational system (68th in Formal Education). India’s key strength relates to growing (44th) talent, primarily by virtue of the possibilities for Lifelong Learning (40th) and Access to Growth Opportunities (39th).

Aspirants with criminal past should not get ticket, EC tells SC

GS Paper II

Topic: Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act.

Mains: Criminalization of Politics

What’s the News?

The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to examine a proposition made by the Election Commission (EC) to ask political parties to not give ticket to those with criminal antecedents.

Criminalization of Politics:

  • It means that the criminals entering the politics and contesting elections and even getting elected to the Parliament and state legislature.
  • Criminalisation of politics is the focus of public debate when discussion on electoral reforms takes place.

Criminalization of politics is an “extremely disastrous and lamentable situation”, the apex court said this “unsettlingly increasing trend” in the country has the propensity to “send shivers down the spine of a constitutional democracy”.

Factors responsible:

  • The use of muscle power along with money power is a weapon used by all political parties to maximize electoral gains.
  • The Representation of People Act specifies what can disqualify an individual from contesting an election. The law does not bar individuals who have criminal cases pending against them from contesting elections.
  • An individual punished with a jail term of more than two years cannot stand in an election for six years after the jail term has ended. With cases dragging in courts for years, a disqualification based on conviction becomes ineffective.

Need to Decriminalize Politics:

  • The quality of candidates contesting elections becomes important because it is at the root of our governance challenges.
  • Individuals we elect represent us in our legislative institutions and make laws that govern our society.
  • Dr Rajendra Prasad said that a constitution like a machine is a lifeless thing. It acquires life because of the men who control it and operate it.
  • Data from the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) indicate that 179 out of the 543 elected MPs in the present Lok Sabha have some kind of criminal case pending against them.
  • In the case of over 100 MPs, the cases were of a very serious nature such as crimes against women and kidnapping.
  • Going by the ADR’s estimates, there are more than 1,500 MPs and MLAs in Parliament and State Assemblies with criminal cases pending against them.
  • Data suggests that voters don’t mind electing candidates facing criminal cases.

SC’s Rulings:

  • Making it mandatory for candidates to submit an affidavit with full disclosure of criminal cases, if any, and details of their asset and income — were made mandatory by the judiciary.
  • The court made it mandatory for political parties and candidates themselves to make public disclosure through print and electronic media.
  • None of the Above (NOTA) option was also introduced by the judiciary in 2003.
  • In 2013, the apex court ruled that a sitting MP and MLA convicted of a jail term of two years or more would lose their seat in the legislature immediately.
  • The Supreme Court favoured the creation of special courts for expediting criminal cases involving politicians.

Challenges:

  • Election Commission has limited powers to legislate on such laws. Public opinion too is not firm on the issue.
  • A survey found that opinion was divided when people were asked whether they would vote for an honest candidate who may not get their work done, or a tainted candidate who could get their work done.
  • While political parties raise concern about candidates with a tainted background contesting elections, none of them come forward to set an example for others when it is time to act.
  • In the present criminal justice system it takes years, probably decades, to complete the trial against a politician.
  • Those with political influence have taken full advantage by delaying hearings, obtaining repeated adjournments and filing innumerable interlocutory petitions to stall any progress.
  • They also engage in corruption and infect the bureaucracy and the police.

 Way Forward:

  • Rapid criminalisation of politics cannot be arrested by merely disqualifying tainted legislators but by removing leaders charged with “heinous and grievous” crimes like rape, murder and kidnapping and refuse ticket to offenders in both parliamentary and Assembly polls.
  • Sensitising the electorate about the role and responsibility of the elected representatives.
  • We require a fresh pool of candidates who can appeal to the voters by their abilities as good lawmakers with innovative ideas. Political parties would then be pressured to give tickets to individuals who can win elections without having muscle power or criminal cases against them.
  • Political parties will have to be encouraged to have stronger inner party democracy to attract this new set of leaders to join the party.
  • Judicial system will have to be overhauled drastically to ensure that justice is dispensed swiftly in all cases.

MAINS QUESTION:

 “According to an analysis by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) close to 43% winners of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls have criminal cases against them”. In the light of the above statement analyze the issue of criminalization of politics.