Punjab Government to make sacrilege of religious text punishable with life imprisonment

The Chief Minister of Punjab, Amarinder Singh on August 21, 2018 announced that the state cabinet has approved amendments to the Indian Penal Code (IPC) to make sacrilege of all religious text punishable with life imprisonment.

The Cabinet approved the Code of Criminal Procedure (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2018, and the Indian Penal Code (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2018. The amended bills will be tabled in the upcoming Assembly session.

ISRO unveils Gaganyaan Mission to put Indians in space before 2022

The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) on August 28, 2018 unveiled the details of the Gaganyaan mission for manned space flight before 2022. The Gaganyaan mission was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his 72nd Independence Day speech. PM Modi announced that this manned space mission will take Indian astronauts to space on board ‘Gaganyaan’ by 2022.

ISRO Chairman, Dr K. Sivan said that the programme will make India the fourth nation in the world to launch a Human Spaceflight Mission. So far, only the USA, Russia and China have launched human spaceflight missions.

Section 377 verdict: Supreme Court legalised homosexuality

A Five Judge Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court on September 6, 2018 decriminalised Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) by partially striking down some of its provisions.

The bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra; Justices R F Nariman, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Indu Malhotra ruled that Section 377, to the extent it criminalises sexual acts between consenting adults, whether homosexual or hetrosexual, is unconstitutional.

However, bestiality will continue as an offence. Any kind of sexual activity with animals shall remain penal offence under Section 377 of the IPC. The Judgement overrules the Suresh Kaushal Judgement pronounced in 2013 by the apex court.