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Daily News Analysis 03-10-2015

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

ESSENCE OF THE ARTICLE

1.         

 

Pakistan attacks India at UN again over Kashmir (Page 12)

a)     I.R

a)    India and Pakistan continued to wrangle at the UN, as Pakistan exercised its right to reply to External Affairs Minister SushmaSwarajs address, with an unbridled attack on India.

2.

To counter China, Navy expands reach (Pages 1 and 13)

a)     I.R

a)    In backdrop of two developments, hangs the shadow of Chinas growing naval assertiveness in the region, and Indias new-found aggression to build partnerships both as a response to China as well as part of its role as a major maritime force of the Indian Ocean.

3.

India needs no Monroe Doctrine (Page 10)

a)     I.R

a)    Indias approach to its neighbours has increasingly been marked by muscularity, evident in its recent attempts to browbeat Nepal into carrying out amendments to its Constitution. What South Asia needs is a friendly India, not a powerful big brother.

4.

Domestic mechanism to probe war crimes (Page 14)

a)     International

a)    Sri Lankan President Sirisena (who returned to Colomboafter attending the UNGA in New York) asserted that only a domestic mechanism would probe allegations of human rights violations.

5.

High-speed rail deal signals new phase of Sino-US ties (Page 14)

a)     International

a)    Chinas ties with the US are quietly moving to the next level, signalled by a high-speed rail contract and a string of hi-end investments that could help Beijing transition towards an innovation-based economy.

6.

The Russians in Syria: What will happen next? (Page 14)

a)     International

a)     The strategic chessboard of West Asia has been rattled severely this week with the sudden entry of advanced Russian warplanes into the already complex battlefields of Syria.

7.

How to avoid Copenhagen in Paris (Page 11)

a)     International

a)    At the climate change conference to be held in December, the world will once again try to find a balance between environment protection and industrialization.

8.

India to cut emissions intensity (Pages 1 and 12)

a)     International

b)     National

a)    The Union Environment Ministry submitted its Intended Nationally Determined Contributions to the UNFCCC, committing to cut the emissions intensity of GDP by 33-35 percent by 2030 from 2005 levels.

9.

Preparing for Paris (Page 10)

a)     International

b)     National

a)    Indias commitment to adopt low-carbon pathways for development is welcome reaffirmation that it fully recognises its role in averting dangerous climate change.

10.

Sadique remains a loose end in 7/11 case (Page 13)

a)     National

b)     Polity

a)    Five persons were sentenced to death and the other accused to life imprisonment this week in the 2006 Mumbai train blasts case. But references to the incident in another case, involving the arrest of the alleged Indian Mujahideen operatives, suggest that SadiqueIsrar Ahmed Shaikh remains a loose end in the case.

11.

Jan DhanYojanas seeds were sown in Goa in 2001: Parrikar (Page 13)

a)     National

b)     Social issue

a)    Defence Minister ManoharParrikar said that Goa was the first State to sow the seeds for the PradhanMantri Jan DhanYojana in 2001, when a social welfare scheme first used Electronic Clearance System for direct transfer of doles to senior citizens.

 

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

BACKGROUND

IMPORTANT POINTS

1.         

 

Pakistan attacks India at UN again over Kashmir (Page 12)

a)     I.R

a)     India – Pakistan relations

b)     Kashmir issue

c)     Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK)

d)     UNGA

e)     UNSC

a)  India and Pakistan continued to wrangle at UN, as Pakistan exercised its right to reply to External Affairs Minister SushmaSwarajs address, with an unbridled attack on India.

b)     Accusing India of human rights violations in J&K, of support and sponsorship of terrorism in Pakistan, with references to the Samjhauta blasts and the 2002 Gujarat riots, Pakistans reply marks a new low in statements made at the UN over Kashmir.

c)     The reply came hours after Swarajs UNGA address where she rejected the 4-point peace proposal made by Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif at the UN, saying that just one-point was necessary, and that was, for Pakistan to give up terrorism.

d)     The severity of Pakistans attack on Swarajs speech seems linked to the shift in the Indian strategy towards bringing up Pakistans human rights violations in PoK, including Gilgit and Baltistan.

e)     Official rejected criticism that new policy of highlighting PoK issues could lead to internationalising the Kashmir issue, which India has avoided for decades. There has been no UN reference to Kashmir since a UNSC resolution after 1971 war, and India has prevailed in keeping the issue bilateral.

2.

To counter China, Navy expands reach (Pages 1 and 13)

a)     I.R

a)     India – Australia relations

b)     Defence Cooperation Agreement

a)   Two developments (several hundred kilometres apart) emphatically captured Indias naval challenges and growing opportunities.

b)     In the backdrop of both the two developments, hangs the shadow of Chinas growing naval assertiveness in the region, and Indias new-found aggression to build partnerships both as a response to China as well as part of its role as a major maritime force of the Indian Ocean.

c)     As Navy Chief Admiral R.K. Dhowan began his official tour of Australia on Oct 2, an official statement said India and Australia had several commonalities which served as a foundation for closer cooperation and multifaceted interactions.

d)     The defence cooperation between the two sides has been growing steadily in recent years, with the signing of a Defence Cooperation Agreement in 2006 and a Framework for Defence Cooperation in November 2014. The 2014 agreement envisages regular ship visits and high-level exchanges.

3.

India needs no Monroe Doctrine (Page 10)

a)     I.R

a)     India – Nepal relations

b)     Nepals new Constitution

c)     India – Banglesh relations

d)     Land Boundary agreement

e)     Teesta water-sharing treaty

f)     India – Myanmar reltaions

g)     National Socialist Council of Nagalim–Khaplang (NSCN-K)

a) PMModis sharp initial focus on improving relations with countries in the neighbourhood evoked much optimism. Modis visits to Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Sri Lanka were seen as runaway successes because he effectively stressed the regions shared destiny and promised that the countries would move forward together.

b)     Indias huge relief effort after the Nepal earthquake earlier this year was also welcomed in the Himalayan country, despite some critical voices alleging that limits had been crossed. This was India playing a big brother in a rather positive way - taking responsibility and assisting its neighbours without expecting reciprocity.

c)     But it is in Nepal now that India has got itself into a huge tangle. New Delhis efforts at influencing the Nepali political elite to effect constitutional amendments (that will fulfil the aspirations of the Madhesis and the Tharus) have provoked a huge backlash in Nepal, with a Back off India campaign gaining traction on social media.

d)  Nepali politicians and media allege a re-run of the economic blockade of the late 1980s, since the amendments desired by India have not been carried out. The petroleum products crisis in Bhutan and the way it effected a regime change there after the erstwhile PMJigmeThinley was seen hobnobbing with China is surely not lost on its Himalayan neighbour.

e)     After nearly a decade of uncertainty, Nepal has finally got a Constitution, sparking off some initial celebrations. It may not be the perfect Constitution, but it is federal, republican and, most importantly, secular. Like Bangladesh, it has given itself a secular polity despite the huge majority enjoyed by one particular religious group. In fact, the Hindu Rastra of yore is seen as a legacy of monarchy that Nepal has given up, in keeping with the spirit of its long pro-democracy movement.

f)     India has been involved in Constitution-making process in Nepal - its top diplomats and leaders have been in regular touch with the Nepali leaders. So, should we believe that the Constitution, which 85 percent of the 601-member Nepali Constituent Assembly voted for in September, came as a surprise to India despite the latter having a huge diplomatic and intelligence presence in that country?

g)     Many leaders said India should have respected the will of the Nepali people, reflected in the verdict of the CA. The voting made clear the broad consensus in Nepal, with even some representatives of the recalcitrant Madhesi and Tharu communities voting for the Constitution. It was always possible to get some amendments done after the Constitution took effect and India should have been patient.

h)     Indias advice to Nepal to resolve differences through dialogue in an atmosphere free from violence and intimidation so as to enable broad-based ownership and acceptance is seen as a big shove, not a gentle push and that is provoking deep resentment among citizens and the political class alike. This is interventionism at its worst. It would be really unfortunate if Indian interests are seen as being synonymous with those of some communities of Indian origin, whose leaderships remain deeply divided, even if not discredited.

i)     India needs to identify with the larger Nepali aspirations, after all the Modi talk of sacrifices by the Gorkhas to protect India. New Delhis reaction to the adoption of the Constitution did not go down well with even the most pro-Indian of Nepali politicians.

j)     India should have lobbied discreetly on getting some of its concerns addressed in the Nepali Constitution, not thrown tantrums after the statute was adopted by a sweeping majority. This does not sit well with Indias image at a time when the Modi administration is making a determined bid for a permanent seat in the UNSC.

k)     Indias failure to deliver on the Teesta water-sharing treaty has left trusted ally Bangladesh and its PM Sheikh Hasina uncertain. The land boundary agreement did help lift her spirits and Modi was seen as delivering on promises made, but unless the Teesta deal goes through, Hasina will never be able to convince her countrymen that India is a worthy friend. 

l)     The Modiadministrations decision to regularise the stay of Hindu refugees from Bangladesh and Pakistan, a move that may get the BJP some electoral dividend in West Bengal and Assam, has also unnerved the ruling party in Bangladesh. The Awami League is keen to prevent a large-scale migration of Hindus to India for a whole host of reasons.

m)     Mindless chest-thumping over hitting rebels deep inside Myanmar has already cost India. Despite the subsequent damage control that has led to important state visits, Myanmar has refused to hand over the NSCN-Ks  leader Khaplang and three of his confidantes, who India wants to put on trial for attacks on its security forces. Myanmar peacemakers have actually held formal negotiations with Khaplangs representatives on a national ceasefire agreement that the TheinSein government is planning to sign with its ethnic rebel armies, ahead of the November parliament elections. 

n)Both in Nepal and Myanmar, the Modi administration seems to have displayed a lack of sensitivity towards aspirations of people of these smaller sovereign nations. Whether this is because the security establishment has started to overshadow the Ministry of External Affairs, or because domestic considerations have started to shape the Indian response, is a matter of speculation.

o)     However, a muscular neighbourhood policy (especially with smaller neighbours) will not work for India. It will not only help drive them into the Chinese fold, but will also provide traction to Pakistans sustained campaign against Indian domination in the region.

4.

Domestic mechanism to probe war crimes (Page 14)

a)     International

a)     Sri Lankas human rights issue

b)     UNHRC

c)     Amnesty International

d)     UNGA

a)    Sri Lankan President Sirisena (who returned to Colomboafter attending the UNGA in New York) asserted that only a domestic mechanism would probe allegations of human rights violations.

b)     Referring to the adoption of a resolution at the UNHRC on accountability, he told the mechanism would be in accordance with the Constitution of Sri Lanka.

c)     To discuss various issues concerning reconciliation, he said the govt will hold conferences with all political parties, leaders of all religions, intellectuals and Sri Lankan diaspora.

d)     Amnesty Internationalurged the global community and Sri Lankan authorities to see to it that victims and their families were consulted at every step of the process to get to truth and justice.

5.

High-speed rail deal signals new phase of Sino-US ties (Page 14)

a)     International

a)     China – US relations

b)     Economic ties

a)    Chinas ties with the US are quietly moving to the next level, signalled by a high-speed rail contract and a string of hi-end investments that could help Beijing transition towards an innovation-based economy.

b)  Analyst say that the Chinese forays in the US are likely to dramatically expand railway competition between Beijing and Tokyo, which has so far been confined to Asia, in countries such as Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and India.

c)     Chinas growing economic engagement in US flows from a policy direction that encourages companies to seek and absorb advanced technology.

6.

The Russians in Syria: What will happen next? (Page 14)

a)     International

a)     Syria crisis

b)     Islamic State (IS)

c)     Nusra Front

 

a)     The strategic chessboard of West Asia has been rattled severely this week with sudden entry of advanced Russian warplanes into the already complex battlefields of Syria.

b)     For US and its allies, this is deeply unwelcome, especially if the targets do turn out to include US-backed rebels. They see it as prolonging an unwinnable war and delaying the departure of a Syrian President who is now unacceptable to a large part of his population.

c)   But for Syrias Assad regime and its Iranian allies, the arrival of Russian firepower is quite the opposite - it is a lifeline that could shore up the exhausted Syrian army, regain territory lost this year and crush all the rebel opposition except the hardcore jihadists of so-called IS and the Nusra Front.

7.

How to avoid Copenhagen in Paris (Page 11)

a)     International

a)     Paris Climate Conference 2015

b)     Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs)

c)     United Nations Framework on Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC)

d)     Copenhagen climate summit 2009

e)     Sustainable Development

 

a)    As the much-awaited UNFCCC slated to be held in Paris this December comes closer, questions on how to first and foremost avoid a repeat of the disaster that was the Copenhagen climate summit of 2009 seem to have already taken centre stage.Both China and India took home much of blame for failures in Denmark.

b)     The Arctic polar ice melt is often seen as the ground zero of climate change debate. It is a region where climate change can be physically quantified through graphs, pictures and visible data, all of which give life to scientific jargon. Obamas visit to the Alaskan Arctic came just after giving oil and gas giant Shell permission to drill in the sensitive ecology. This highlights the global fight to find a balance between environment protection and industrialisation.

c)     Since Copenhagen, some significant events have taken place that could add optimism to the Paris conference. In late 2014, China and the US agreed on a bilateral deal on carbon emissions that arguably gave some leverage to Beijing on its emission cut plans till 2030 over US Currently China emits more CO2 than US and Canada put together, with emission levels up by 171 percent since 2000.

d)     In the same period, India has become the third biggest emitter. However, in terms of per capita emissions, Indias is only 1.75 tonnes of CO2 per capita compared to 4 (world average) or 10+ (developed country average).

e)     The above numbers are one of the major reasons why India and China are now more relevant to multilateral forums around the world, irrespective of geographic proximity or political interests. Both China and India are also observing members of the Arctic Council, which has its secretariat in Troms, Norway.

f)     As one of the top three polluters in the world, India is under significant pressure to commit to legally binding emission cuts. What is expected of India and China (as part of the multilateral negotiations) is loosely highlighted in the skeleton document for the Paris conference, released during a preparatory summit in Bonn (Germany) in August.

g)     It is also important to remember that Arctic states such as Russia, Norway, Denmark, Canada and the US are not ignorant to commercial opportunities that climate change in the region brings with it. The idea of sustainable development is also a very active and pursued policy. Along with environmental protection, energy (mostly oil and gas), natural resources such as fish, and commercial shipping are also on the Arctic states top agenda.

h)     The Copenhagen summits failure gave countries such as India the option of developing INDCs, or, in other words, voluntary national targets for controlling carbon emissions. These are rumoured to be only legally binding for developed nations, and not the developing. This allows Delhi to attempt to reach targets on CO2 emissions that it can set itself and allowing it perhaps to rely more on realism, navigating the big moral pressures of national climate change policies.

i)     While the acceptance of INDCs is a much-criticised policy by Europe, it offers India security. India needs to control the fate of its developing economy, which, for example, has challenges such as providing more than 300 million people with electricity.

j)     The INDC route allows India time to build systems at home to implement a legally binding climate framework in the future, systems it currently does not have. Unless such systems are first developed, an international legally binding climate treaty could become hugely problematic for the countrys economy.

8.

India to cut emissions intensity (Pages 1 and 12)

a)     International

b)     National

a)     Climate change

b)     Carbon emissions

c)     Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs)

d)     UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)

e)     Green Climate Fund (GFC)

a)    The Union Environment Ministry submitted its INDCs to the UNFCCC, committing to cut the emissions intensity of GDP by 33-35 percent by 2030 from 2005 levels.

b)     The INDCslaid out the blueprint for tackling climate change. They emphasised8 key goals - sustainable lifestyles, cleaner economic development, reducing emission intensity of GDP, increasing the share of non-fossil fuel based electricity, enhancing carbon sink, adaptation and mobilising finance, technology transfer and capacity building.

c)     Referring to Indias INDCs as balanced and comprehensive, he said that for a developing nation, Indias goals for tackling climate change were far more ambitious when compared to that of other developed countries.

d)     India has committed to 40 percent of non-fossil fuel energy to be adopted by 2030. It has also set the target of generating 3 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent of carbon sinks in the form of forests.

e)     The INDCs point to tripling of Indias electricity demands by 2030, for which thermal energy is unavoidable. However, Javadekar pointed out that even for thermal power, emission norms have been made more stringent. Indiacited its lower per capita emissions, underlining less responsibility to act compared to other top emitters such as US, China and EU.

f)   As far as financial resources for meeting the targets are concerned, India plans to raise them both at home and seek assistance from the GFC. The INDCs are basis for negotiating the climate change agreement at the UN climate summit in Paris coming up in December.

9.

Preparing for Paris (Page 10)

a)     International

b)     National

a)     Paris Climate Conference 2015

b)     Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs)

c)     UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)

d)     Greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs)

a)    Indias commitment to adopt low-carbon pathways for development is welcome reaffirmation that it fully recognises its role in averting dangerous climate change.

b)     In the statement of climate goals and plans (formally called the INDCs) which has been submitted to UNFCC, the Modigovt has emphasised expansion of clean technologies to generate power, greater energy efficiency in infrastructure, and a significant widening of forestry as key measures. There are several other actions that it will take in the areas of transport, buildings, agriculture and waste management in order to balance economic growth with carbon emissions.

c)   With all this, India promises to reduce emissions intensity of its GDP by 33 to 35 percent by 2030 (from 2005 levels), while not committing itself to any absolute reduction in GHGs. What is significant is that the national plans given in INDC (ahead of the Paris Climate Conference in December 2015) depends on the unencumbered availability of clean technologies and financial resource from around the world.

d)   Such a position is consistent with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities that guides climate negotiations. Yet, India cannot avoid addressing the internal contradiction (affluent citizens have access to cheap, abundant energy and mobility while the poor and vulnerable are forced to fend for themselves) in facing negative effects of climate change.

10.

Sadique remains a loose end in 7/11 case (Page 13)

a)     National

b)     Polity

a)     Death penalty

b)     MCOCA court

c)     Mumbai train blasts case 2006

a)    Five persons were sentenced to death and the other accused to life imprisonment this week in the 2006 Mumbai train blasts case. But references to the incident in another case, involving the arrest of the alleged Indian Mujahideen operatives, suggest that SadiqueIsrar Ahmed Shaikh(who initially claimed responsibility for the train blasts and later retracted) remains a loose end in the case.

b)     In Feb 2009, the Crime Branch charge-sheeted Sadique and 20 others for allegedly hatching terror conspiracies and sending emails claiming responsibility for various blasts in India. Documents submitted to the MCOCA court in this case repeatedly mention the Mumbai train blasts, leaving this aspect of the 7/11 case unresolved.

11.

Jan DhanYojanas seeds were sown in Goa in 2001: Parrikar (Page 13)

a)     National

b)     Social issue

a)     PradhanMantri Jan DhanYojana

b)     Electronic Clearance System (ECS)

a)    Defence Minister ManoharParrikar said that Goa was the first State to sow the seeds for the PradhanMantri Jan DhanYojana in 2001, when a social welfare scheme first used ECS for direct transfer of doles to senior citizens.In 100 days, the PM implemented ECS facility across the entire country.

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