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Major News and Events of 15 December 2013

What Happened on 15 December 2013

Nelson Mandela Rests in Peace

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela’s long walk to freedom halts at Qunu, his childhood village. On Sunday (December 15, 2013) he was laid to rest with the international community standing by his side in this small village of South Africa. Mandela was born in a royal family of his clan, joined peaceful anti-apartheid movement, defied the inhumanity of the oppressor, and became a prisoner, who in turn went on to become a President. He is the icon of freedom, justice and peace.

Nelson Mandela died on December 5, 2013 in Johannesburg at the age of 95. He was suffering from Prostate cancer from 2001. During last 6 months he was suffering from lung infection. Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 27 long years for opposing racism and apartheid.

Mandela joined peaceful and democratic anti apartheid movement in the 1940s. But the messenger of peace was forced to prepare for an armed struggle in 1961 when their peaceful protest was crushed inhumanly by the ruling whites in South Africa. In July 1962 he was captured. India ensured that United Nations take note of the apartheid problem and promotes solidarity with the oppressed in South Africa. Mandela was finally freed in 1990 and became the first colored President of South Africa. After serving single term as President, Mandela stepped down as the leader in 1999. This iconic figure has received over 250 honors internationally including Noble Peace Prize (1993), Bharat Ratna, Order of Lenin (from erstwhile USSR), and US Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Aam Aadmi Party rejects Lokpal Bill of UPA-II

Lokpal Bill of the government has been outrightly rejected by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). They said the Bill in its present format can’t curb corruption and is completely powerless. It is interesting to note that Congress and BJP have agreed to pass Lokpal Bill in winter session of the Parliament. Kejriwal, with Prasant Bhushan by side, said in a press meet, AAP will not accept this Bill.

According to Prashant Bhushan, the Bill is unaccepted to them even with the proposed amendments because it will still be ineffective to curb corruption. He stressed, neither the bill nor the amendments say anything regarding empowerment of the investigators in taking action against the corrupt.

Fair investigation is not possible through this Lokpal because, according to AAP, the power of starting investigation by appointing Lokpal rests with politicians only, against whom the investigation is needed to be started. This is the reason Aam Aadmi Party is skeptical about efficacy of Lokpal Bill. They say fair investigation cannot be ensured through this.

Arvind Kejriwal said making CBI independent is need of the hour. Through this, even Prime Minister can be made accountable. They accuse present form of the Lokpal to be under direct control of the government.

Aam Aadmi Party has also expressed their disgust over Anna Hazare's support for the government’s Lokpal Bill, saying he is being misled. In fact, they have called Sarkari Lokpal as ‘Jokepal’. AAP stated they will continue their struggle for garnering support in favor of Jan Lokpal Bill.

FAQs and Answers on Indian History and Geography
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