• In Focus by The Hindu

  • By: The Hindu
  • Podcast
In Focus by The Hindu  By  cover art

In Focus by The Hindu

By: The Hindu
  • Summary

  • A podcast from The Hindu that delves deep into current developments with subject experts, and brings in context, history, perspective and analysis.
    The Hindu
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  • Nov 25 2022
    In August this year, the government withdrew the draft Data Protection Bill, 2021, saying it would come up with a comprehensive legal framework in a new draft. Now the new draft, – the fourth overall, is out. Titled the Digital Personal Data Protection Bill, 2022 (DPDP Bill, 2022), the draft Bill is open for public comments and is expected to be introduced in Parliament in the Budget session of 2023. So, how different is the latest version from the earlier drafts? Does it do a better job of safeguarding the rights of users – or data principals, as they are called in legal parlance? In the first part of this two-part Deep Dive podcast, we take a detailed look at how well the Bill safeguards the rights of individual users. 
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    26 mins
  • Nov 23 2022
    This month, Haryana has been rocked by agitations and healthcare services have been disrupted, as medical students have been protesting against the State government's bond policy. Bond policies for students at government medical colleges, usually involve a mandated period of service at a State-run hospital for students after their graduation, failing which they pay a penalty amount.  In Haryana, the government's original policy said MBBS candidates had to pay an annual bond of Rs. 10 lakh minus the fee, at the start of every academic year, which the government would repay, if the candidate obtained employment with the State. The service period with the State is seven years. Following the protests, the Chief Minister had said the bond need not be paid at the time of admission, instead students would have to sign a bond-cum-loan agreement with the college and a bank. However reports indicate the students are still unhappy with the policy. Many States have this policy for medical students, with the bond amount and the period of service varying from State to State. In general, the understanding is that since students at government medical colleges get an education subsidized by the State, they must provide service in return to the state, generally in rural areas where there may be a shortage of doctors. In August 2019, the Supreme Court upheld the bond policy put in place by several States but said that some seemed to have rigid conditions, and suggested to the Centre that the country have a uniform policy regarding this. Now, there are reports that the Union Health Ministry plans to create guidelines to scrap the bond policy altogether, based on recommendations from the National Medical Commision - and perhaps incorporate mandatory rural through a non-financial mechanism. While providing healthcare rurally is crucial - 75% of our healthcare infrastructure is concentrated in urban areas - students in parts of the country have complained of no State job guarantee once their degree is complete, and in some cases, no payment of salaries.  So does the bond policy for medical students need to be relooked at? How can State governments provide healthcare where it is desperately needed, while ensuring a policy that is fair for students? How do other countries handle their rural healthcare systems? And what else can governments do to provide accessible, quality healthcare in our villages? 
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    41 mins
  • Nov 22 2022
    The killing of two persons inside Polish territory on November 15 by a missile strike had the world on edge till it became known that the likely culprit was a Ukrainian and not a Russian missile. A flurry of meetings took place and statements flew thick and fast. U.S. President Joe Biden convened an emergency meeting of like-minded Western nations on the sidelines of the G20 Bali summit. As NATO and Western statements suggested that it was a Ukrainian air defence missile that may have landed in Poland, tensions eased, but dangers lurk ahead as the Russia-Ukraine confrontation looks to go on and on. 
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    26 mins

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