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Daily News Analysis 14-04-2016

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

ESSENCE OF THE ARTICLE

1.         

 

India hands over remains of WW-II soldiers to US (Page 14)

a)     I.R

a)     In a moving ceremony at the end of US Defence Secretary Ashton Carters visit, India handed over the remains of US soldiers killed in plane crashes during World War II in Indias Northeast.

2.

A firm handshake, not an embrace (Page 12)

a)     I.R

a)    The three-day visit of US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter (which concluded on April 12) appears to fit into a new security paradigm that is unfurling under the Narendra Modi government.

3.

China responds cautiously to Indo-US logistics pact (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     China has taken in its stride Indias decision to sign a logistics support agreement with the US, saying New Delhi will make up its diplomatic policies based on its own interests.

4.

India undermining Gwadar project (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     Pakistans Army Chief General Raheel Sharif accused India of seeking to undermine his countrys $46 billion project to build an economic corridor to transport goods from Chinas western regions through the Pakistani deepwater port of Gwadar.

5.

Bangladesh plans to ban terrorist (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     State Minister for Foreign Affairs Shahriar Alam said that Bangladesh is planning to ban the Jamaat-e-Islami, the countrys biggest Islamist party.

6.

Russian jets simulate attack passes in Baltic (Page 16)

a)     International

a)      A US official said that two Russian warplanes with no visible weaponry flew simulated attack passes near a US guided missile destroyer in the Baltic Sea, describing it as one of the most aggressive interactions in recent memory.

7.

Water-starved India looks West to revive its rivers (Page 14)

a)     National

b)     Geography

a)     India is looking West to learn how to clean and conserve its polluted and dwindling water resources.

8.

World output faces risk of 3.9 percent drop by 2021 (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     The International Monetary Fund said in its latest Global Financial Stability Report that the decline in oil prices has helped countries such as India improve their external positions, but low commodity prices have kept risks elevated in emerging market economies.

9.

Ministries bicker over strategy in US solar case (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     Inter-ministerial differences have cropped up on what should be Indias strategy in dragging the US to the WTOs Dispute Settlement Body in a matter involving renewable energy policies of several State governments in the US violating the global trade bodys norms.

 

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

BACKGROUND

IMPORTANT POINTS

1.         

 

India hands over remains of WW-II soldiers to US (Page 14)

a)     I.R

a)     India – US relations

b)     Defence Prisoners of War/Missing in Action Accounting Agency (DPAA)

c)     World War II

 

a)     In a moving ceremony at the end of US Defence Secretary Ashton Carters visit, India handed over the remains of US soldiers killed in plane crashes during World War II in Indias Northeast.

b)     The US has flown several air missions over the Himalayas called the hump from 1942 onwards to counter Japanese. The US had approached India with coordinates of the air crashes about 12 years ago and after initial search by the Army the eventual recovery was undertaken by a specialist team from the US DPAA.

c)     One set of remains was recovered in Arunachal Pradesh between Sept 12 and Nov 17 2015, while a second set was unilaterally turned over to DPAA by a third party from the same region. The remains that were turned over to the DPAA are possibly related to a C-109 that crashed on July 17 1945, travelling from Jorhat, India, to Hsinching, China.

2.

A firm handshake, not an embrace (Page 12)

a)     I.R

a)     India – US relations

b)     Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA)

c)     Defence Technology and Trade Initiative (DTTI)

a)    The three-day visit of US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter (which concluded on April 12) appears to fit into a new security paradigm that is unfurling under the Modi govt. By agreeing to sign LEMOA, India has sent out a clear signal that it has no inhibitions about being bound in strategic engagements with the US.

b)     Once concluded, it would give American aircraft and warships access to Indian military bases for logistical purposes, including refuelling and repair. In turn, Indias military will enjoy similar access to US bases. This would qualitatively transform Indias relations with the US.

c)     The logistics agreement had been first proposed officially in June 2004, but the UPA govt remained wary of seeing it through.

d)     Indeed, for all the atmospherics of the American visit this week, it appears that the NDA govt shares some of the UPAs reticence, especially on India-US issues that have multilateral implications or that could impact Indias relations with other countries.

e)     Significantly, the logistics agreement (one of three foundational agreements the US has been insisting on) was not signed in the course of Carters visit, as the Americans had expected. This gives New Delhi time to tackle the ongoing domestic debate over a possible loss of sovereignty.

f)     While the joint statement refers to ensuring freedom of navigation in the South China Sea, Defence Minister Parrikar has been careful to avoid the USs repeated references to joint patrols. Even the agreement on sharing data on commercial shipping traffic that Carter had expected to conclude during his visit will be the subject of another round of talks.

g)  India must take a considered view of the repercussions that such a strategic alliance may have for Indias relations with other countries. Moreover, the US administration will change in the year ahead, and it would be wise to wait for the next.

h)     Significantly, Indias concerns about continued American military funding and defence transfers to Pakistan still remain unaddressed.

i)     Meanwhile, Parrikar and Carter have agreed to expand collaboration under the DTTI, infuse greater complexity in their military engagements and maritime exercises, commence discussions on submarine safety and anti-submarine warfare, and initiate a bilateral maritime security dialogue that would include diplomats and the defence establishments.

3.

China responds cautiously to Indo-US logistics pact (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     India – US Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA)

b)     China - US relations

c)      South China Sea dispute

a)     China has taken in its stride Indias decision to sign a logistics support agreement with the US, saying India will make up its diplomatic policies based on its own interests.

b)     In New Delhi, Defence Minister Parrikar announced that the two countries had agreed in principle to conclude a LEMOA in the coming months, which would allow the two militaries to use each others assets for repair and replenishment.

c)     Earlier, China criticised Carters decision to drop Beijing from the itinerary of his Asia visit, which took him to India and the Philippines.

d)     The Chinese Defence Ministry noted that Carters visit to China has been listed in the plan for this years China-US military exchanges. The defence authorities of the two countries have maintained normal communication and coordination over the concrete time of the visit.

e)     Sources said that Carter had dropped his plan to visit Beijing this month during his trip to India and the Philippines amid tensions between Beijing and Washington over the South China Sea issue.

4.

India undermining Gwadar project (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     China – Pakistan relations

b)     China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)

c)     Gwadar project

 

a)     Pakistans Army Chief General Raheel Sharif accused India of seeking to undermine his countrys $46 billion project to build an economic corridor to transport goods from Chinas western regions through the Pakistani deepwater port of Gwadar.

b)     Speaking at a development conference on the impact of the CPEC, Gen. Sharif said the significance of a Pakistan-China economic alliance had raised eyebrows in the region.

c)    Last month, Pakistan said it had detained a suspected Indian spy for RAW in Baluchistan, the southwestern Pakistani province where most of the CPEC is taking shape. India has confirmed that the man is a former Indian navy official but denied that he is a spy. Pakistan believes India is supporting a separatist insurgency in Balochistan.

5.

Bangladesh plans to ban terrorist (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     Jamaat-e-Islami

b)     Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP)

 

a)     State Minister for Foreign Affairs Shahriar Alam said that Bangladesh is planning to ban the Jamaat-e-Islami, the countrys biggest Islamist party.

b)     He said Jamaat is a full-terrorist organisation and the BNP (which has had an alliance with Jamaat) is a half-terrorist organisation. The BNP needs to be reformed. But Jamaat needs to be banned. After all, a terrorist organisation like the Jamaat cannot be allowed to conduct normal political activities in the country.

c)     Bangladesh has seen a rise in extremist violence over last few years and murder of Samad on April 6 has created a tense situation in the country right before the traditional Bangla celebration of Pohela Boishakh.

6.

Russian jets simulate attack passes in Baltic (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     US – Russia relations

b)     Baltic Sea

c)     NATO

 

a)     A US official said that two Russian warplanes with no visible weaponry flew simulated attack passes near a US guided missile destroyer in the Baltic Sea, describing it as one of the most aggressive interactions in recent memory.

b)     The nearest Russian territory was about 70 nautical miles away in its enclave of Kaliningrad, which sits between Lithuania and Poland.

c)  The incident came as NATO plans its biggest build-up in eastern Europe since Cold War to counter what the alliance, and in particular the Baltic states and Poland, consider to be a more aggressive Russia.

d)     The three Baltic states (which joined both NATO and the EU in 2004) have asked NATO for a permanent presence of battalion-sized deployments of allied troops in each of their territories. A NATO battalion typically consists of 300 to 800 troops.

7.

Water-starved India looks West to revive its rivers (Page 14)

a)     National

b)     Geography

a)     Namami Ganga programme

b)     India – Israel relations

c)     India – Germany relations

 

a)     India is looking West to learn how to clean and conserve its polluted and dwindling water resources.

b)     Grappling with water shortage and pollution in key rivers, the Ministry of Water Resources is entering into a slew of agreements with Germany, Israel and the United Kingdom to learn how they cleaned and revived key rivers as well as used technology to manage drought and used sparse water better.

c)     On April 12, the MoWR signed agreement with German International Cooperation of Germany to help with cleaning the Ganga. The Namami Ganga is a flagship Rs. 30,000-crore programme of the NDA government to clean the Ganga and restore its flows by 2020.

d)  The Ministry said that in the case of Israel, technologies for water purification and filtration were likely to be shared.

e)     Indian companies already use desalination technologies sourced from Israel but officials said there was much more scope for further engagement.  

8.

World output faces risk of 3.9 percent drop by 2021 (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     Global Financial Stability Report

b)     IMF

a)     The IMF said in its latest Global Financial Stability Report that the decline in oil prices has helped countries such as India improve their external positions, but low commodity prices have kept risks elevated in emerging market economies.

b)     According to the report, the spill-over effects of the growing uncertainty about Chinas economy and setbacks to growth and confidence in advanced economies are other factors undermining global financial stability.

c)   The report warns that global output could decline 3.9 percent by 2021 if action is not taken to address the risks faced by the financial system. The main message of this report is that additional measures are needed to deliver a more balanced and potent policy mix for improving growth and inflation outlook and securing financial stability.

d)     The financial stability report assesses the risks faced by the global financial system and the current edition surveys the issues that surfaced since October 2015.

e)     The report identifies a window of opportunity in the current economic recovery to deal with what it calls a triad of global challenges, namely, the legacy issues in advanced economies, vulnerabilities in emerging markets and greater systemic market liquidity risks.

9.

Ministries bicker over strategy in US solar case (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     India – US solar dispute

b)     WTOs Dispute Settlement Body

c)     Trade-Related Investment Measures (TRIMs)

d)     Subsidies & Countervailing Measures (SCM)

e)     Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission

 

a)   Inter-ministerial differences have cropped up on what should be Indias strategy in dragging the US to the WTOs Dispute Settlement Body in a matter involving renewable energy policies of several State govts in the US violating the global trade bodys norms.

b)     The renewable energy (solar & hydro power) policies in question allegedly have local content requirements and/or greater incentives to domestic manufacturers in the US thereby restricting and distorting trade, and in turn violating WTO rules.

c)     India had several years ago raised the matter before the WTO committees on TRIMs as well as on SCM by pointing out that the renewable energy schemes of many State govts in the US had very significant domestic content requirements violating the US obligations under the WTO agreements on TRIMs and SCMs.

d)     The move comes close on the heels of India recently losing a case to the US at the WTO pertaining to local content requirements in the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission for solar cells/modules.

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