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Daily News Analysis 16-10-2015

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

ESSENCE OF THE ARTICLE

1.         

 

Modi set to travel 60,000 km in 30 days (Pages 1 and 14)

a)     I.R

a)    From London to Kuala Lumpur and back to Paris and Moscow, PMModi will embark on a series of foreign visits once the crucial Bihar elections are out of the way.

2.

Mainstreaming a nuclear Pakistan (Page 12)

a)     I.R

a)    India should offer conditional support to a civilian nuclear deal between US and Pak while insisting that Islamabad signs the No-first-use treaty and clamps down on home-grown terror. It is in Indias interest to ensure that Pakistans nukes are under international supervision.

3.

We have to work together, our challenges are the same (Page 16)

a)     I.R

a)    Nepals Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli(who earlier had accused India of breaking international law for supporting the blockade against his country) has acquired a more diplomatic attitude to New Delhi.

4.

India, US, Japan showcase naval might (Page 9)

a)     I.R

a)    Maintaining that the maritime exercise Malabar (in which it is participating along with Indian and US Navies in Bay of Bengal this week) was not targeted against any country, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force expressed interest to join efforts to ensure free navigation in oceans.

5.

US troops to stay in Afghanistan (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     President Obama announced that US will halt its military withdrawal from Afghanistan and instead keep thousands of troops in the country through the end of his term in 2017, prolonging the US role in a war that has now stretched on for 14 years.

6.

Key issues top agenda of Modi-Mufti meet (Page 14)

a)     National

a)    PMModi met Jammu and Kashmir CM Mufti Muhammad Sayeed in New Delhi. The relations with Pakistan, expansion of the cross-LoC trade and the States development topped the agenda, but there was no word yet on the much-touted flood relief package.

7.

Constitution Bench to deliver NJAC verdict today (Page 14)

a)     National

b)     Polity

a)    The Supreme Court will pronounce its judgment on the constitutional validity of NJAC, a body created to end the 2-decade-old Supreme Court Collegium system of judges appointing judges to highest courts in the land.

8.

Govt cannot insist on Aadhaar: SC (Page 14)

a)     National

b)     Social issue

a)    Noting that the authorities cannot insist on a citizen to produce his Aadhaar card, the Supreme Court extended the voluntary use of the card to MGNREGS, all types of pension schemes, employee provident fund and the Prime Ministers Jan DhanYojana.

9.

Breaking the bonds of rural poverty (Page 13)

a)     International

b)     Social issue

a)    Far from creating dependency, evidence shows that social protection increases both on-farm and non-farm activities, strengthening livelihoods and lifting incomes.

10.

Rs.2000-cr fund to push financial inclusion (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     The RBI announced merger of two funds to create a new Financial Inclusion Fund with a corpus of Rs. 2000 crore to support developmental and promotional activities for expanding reach of banking services.

11.

Subsonic cruise missile Nirbhay to be test-fired today (Page 8)

a)     National

b)     S&T

a)    The stage is set for test-firing of Nirbhay, Indias long-range subsonic cruise missile from the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur(off Odisha coast) on Oct 16.

 

S.NO.

NEWS ITEM

SYLLUBUS

BACKGROUND

IMPORTANT POINTS

1.         

 

Modi set to travel 60,000 km in 30 days (Pages 1 and 14)

a)     I.R

a)     India – Russia relations

b)     India – UK relations

c)     G-20 summit

d)     EU-India summit

e)     ASEAN-India summit

f)     Paris climate summit 2015

a)    From London to Kuala Lumpur and back to Paris and Moscow, PMModi will embark on a series of foreign visits once the crucial Bihar elections are out of the way.

b)    Diplomatic sources say that besides discussing defence acquisitions by India, including some localised or made in India projects, and more civil nuclear, space and science projects, the two sides are expected to announce the dates for Modis visit to Russia.

c)     In November, the PM is expected to head to the UK for a three-day visit. PM Modi and PM Cameron are expected to spend a lot of time together during the visit.

d)     From the UK, Modi will fly to Turkey to conduct bilateral meetings and to attend the G-20 summit in Antalya on Nov 15 and 16. As no progress has been made in trade talks with EU in past few weeks, an earlier plan to include Brussels for EU-India summit during the trip has been set aside.He will head east to attend the ASEAN-India summit in Kuala Lumpur on Nov 21 and 22.

e)     Modi will meet many of the leaders from G-20 and ASEAN-related summits for a third time on Nov 30, when he flies to Paris for COP-21 UN Climate Change conference, where a major declaration is expected on cutting emissions.

2.

Mainstreaming a nuclear Pakistan (Page 12)

a)     I.R

a)     India – US nuclear deal

b)     US – Pakistan nuclear deal

c)     Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG)

d)     Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT)

e)     Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT)

f)     International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)

 

a)  What should Indias response be to a potential nuclear deal between US and Pakistan that could eventually mainstream the latter into the global nuclear order? Indias initial reactions to media reports about a possible deal indicate that it would unambiguously resist any such move by the US.

b)     In a recent Washington Post column, David Ignatius wrote that the US might support an eventual waiver for Pakistan by the 48-nation NSG, of which the US is a member. The issue is being discussed quietly in the run-up to PM Nawaz Sharifs visit to Washington on Oct 22.

c)     The Ignatius piece should be seen in context of a number of important developments which should be taken on board by India while evaluating the merits of Pakistans admission into the nuclear order. The NSG has been organising outreach meetings with Pak regarding nuclear exports for sometime now. Pakistan has also reached out to the international community to help end its status as a nuclear outcast and to be treated on par with India.

d)     At the Hague Nuclear Security Summit in March 2014, PM Nawaz Sharif called for Pakistans inclusion in all international export control regimes, especially the NSG. Pakistan also holds the key to the commencement of negotiations on a FMCT at the Conference on Disarmament.

e)     Moreover, China (whose consent is necessary for admitting new members to the NSG) has consistently supported Pakistans entry into NSG. Given that Beijing has previously opposed USs efforts at helping New Delhi to get the NSG membership, the Chinese willingness today to consider membership for both India and Pakistan will influence the thinking in Washington and key Western capitals.

f)     Pakistan-watchers in US do not think that the proposal for a nuclear deal for Pakistan would fructify anytime soon, and even if it does materialise, it will come with a number of conditionalities, many of them unacceptable to the Pakistan Army, the custodian of the countrys nuclear arsenal.

g)     Moreover, even if the negotiation process between the US and Pakistan eventually leads to a civilian nuclear deal, there is absolutely no reason for New Delhi to lose sleep over it, unless, New Delhi wants to get back at Islamabad for crying foul when the Indo-US nuclear deal was being negotiated over a decade ago.

h)     According to the author, issues of national interest and strategy should be approached with clinical logic and incisive reasoning and pursued keeping in mind the long-term interests of the country. There are at least four sets of reasons why a conditional nuclear deal between US and Pak would be in Indias national interest.

i)     First of all, Pakistans admission to the global nuclear order is good news for the international non-proliferation regime. An isolated nuclear Pakistan would not be in the interest of the international community or India. Critics of the deal would argue that given Pakistans well-known history of engaging in external nuclear proliferation, we should be wary of inviting it to be part of global normative framework.

j)     Second, it is in Indias interest to ensure that Pakistans nuclear programme is under international safeguards, if not control. It is indeed better for the international community to be in the know of Pakistans nuclear programme, as far as possible, than having absolutely no clue about what it is doing with its nuclear material and technology. The only nuclear relationship that Pakistan has today is with China.

k)     More importantly, the long-drawn-out process of mainstreaming will have a great deal of impact on Pakistans nuclear behaviour and will most certainly bring the Sino-Pak nuclear relations under international scrutiny.

l)    Third, if Indias experience of inking the nuclear deal with the US and other states, besides getting the NSG waiver and signing the India-specific Safeguards Agreement with the IAEA, the road to nuclear normalcy is not going to be a smooth one for Islamabad. It would most certainly mean passing the non-proliferation regimes admission tests as well as jumping through a number of hoops imposed by strategic conditionalities.

m)     The international community will place a number of demands on Pak, given the latters negligent nuclear history and offensive nuclear posture today. For one, it would have to separate its civilian and military facilities (like India did) as part of a potential deal with the IAEA, leading to a less feverish production of fissile material by Pakistan, thereby producing fewer nuclear warheads.

n)     Second, it may be asked to accept restrictions on its weapons programme, materially and doctrinally - such as giving up the policy of early use of nuclear weapons in a conventional conflict with India. Third, Pakistan will have to give up its opposition to FMCT negotiations as a precondition for the deal.

o)    A recent Stimson-Carnegie report on a potential US-Pak nuclear deal identified five initiatives that Pak may have to undertake to mainstream itself into the global nuclear order: shift declaratory policy from a full spectrum deterrence to strategic deterrence; commit to a recessed deterrence posture and limit production of short-range delivery vehicles and tactical nuclear weapons; lift Pakistans veto on FMCT negotiations and reduce or stop fissile material production; separate civilian and military nuclear facilities; and sign the CTBT, without waiting for India to do the same.

p)India should offer conditional support to Pakistans inclusion in the global nuclear order. However, we mustask US and other stakeholders to press Islamabad to stop stalling the FMCT negotiations, and agree to a nuclear No-first-use agreement with India, which is already part of Indian doctrine.

q)     Firm commitments should also be sought from Pakistan on clamping down on terrorism in the country in order to reduce likelihood of nuclear terrorism in the region. Moreover, India should insist that Pakistan, as part of the deal, should be asked to negotiate nuclear confidence building measures with India without linking them to conventional arms control.

3.

We have to work together, our challenges are the same (Page 16)

a)     I.R

a)     India – Nepal relations

b)     Nepals new Constitution

c)     Madhesis

a)    NepalsPM K.P. Sharma Oli(who earlier had accused India of breaking international law for supporting the blockade against his country) has acquired a more diplomatic attitude to New Delhi.

b)  He said a time for consensus and rebuilding had come and it should not be missed by Nepal, which was devastated by the April 25 earthquake and has been weathering a crushing two-month long economic blockade in the Terai region.

c)     The blockade was called to highlight the issues of rights and territory of the Madhesis of Nepal. But it has overtaken the cause of the Madhesis as it has overhwhelmed Nepal financially.

d)     But while it is obvious that the new govt led by Oli will have to address the fallout of economic and fuel blockade, the issue of civil and territorial rights of the Madhesis, Tharu and the indigenous tribes of Nepal are also waiting to be looked into.

4.

India, US, Japan showcase naval might (Page 9)

a)     I.R

a)     Malabar naval exercises 2015

b)     India, US and Japan maritime ties

c)     Bay of Bengal

 

a)    Maintaining that the maritime exercise Malabar (in which it is participating along with Indian and US Navies in Bay of Bengal this week) was not targeted against any country, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force expressed interest to join efforts to ensure free navigation in oceans.

b)     Indian official said the exercise was aimed at improving the interoperability of the forces. While the Indian Navy expected Japan to be part of the exercise in the future, the US Navy stated it would like Japan to participate on a more regular basis.

c)     Chinas sources had observed that US was pushing for making the bilateral exercise into a trilateral framework, involving Japan as a permanent participant.

5.

US troops to stay in Afghanistan (Page 16)

a)     International

a)     Afghanistans situation

b)     Taliban

c)     NATO

 

a)     President Obama announced that US will halt its military withdrawal from Afghanistan and instead keep thousands of troops in the country through the end of his term in 2017, prolonging the US role in a war that has now stretched on for 14 years.

b)     Obama said he did not support the idea of endless war but was convinced that a prolonged US presence in Afghanistan was vital to that countrys future and to the national security of the US.

c)     But the announcement underscores the difficulty Obama has had in achieving one of the central promises of his presidency in both Afghanistan and Iraq. Obama conceded that despite more than a decade of fighting and training, Afghan forces are not fully up to the task of protecting their country.

d)     According to the UN,the Taliban are now spread through more parts of the country than at any point since 2001, and last month they scored their biggest victory of the war, seizing the northern city of Kunduz.

6.

Key issues top agenda of Modi-Mufti meet (Page 14)

a)     National

a)     India – Pakistan relations

b)     Border disputes

c)     LoC

d)     PoK

a)    PMModi met J&K CM Mufti Muhammad Sayeed in New Delhi. The relations with Pakistan, expansion of the cross-LoC trade and the States development topped the agenda, but there was no word yet on the much-touted flood relief package.

7.

Constitution Bench to deliver NJAC verdict today (Page 14)

a)     National

b)     Polity

a)     National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC)

b)     Collegium system

c)     Parliament

d)     CJI

e)     Supreme Court

 

a)    The Supreme Court will pronounce its judgment on the constitutional validity of NJAC, a body created to end the two-decade-old Supreme Court Collegium system of judges appointing judges to highest courts in the land.

b)     The judgment would decide the fate of the powerful Supreme Court Collegium and its so-far undisputed authority to appoint judges to the higher judiciary as it did for the past two decades.

c)     The parliament had unanimously voted in favour of the NJAC law and the Constitutional Amendment. The latter was then ratified by 20 State Assemblies and had received the Presidential assent.

d)     One of the contentious provisions of the new law was the inclusion of two eminent persons to the NJAC which included CJI, two senior most judges of the apex court and the Union Law Minister.

8.

Govt cannot insist on Aadhaar: SC (Page 14)

a)     National

b)     Social issue

a)     Aadhaar scheme

b)     Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS)

c)     Jan DhanYojana

d)     PDS scheme

e)     LPG scheme

a)    Noting that the authorities cannot insist on a citizen to produce his Aadhaar card, the Supreme Court extended the voluntary use of the card to MGNREGS, all types of pension schemes, employee provident fund and the Prime Ministers Jan DhanYojana.

b)     A Constitution Bench said use of the Aadhaar card was purely voluntary and not mandatory. With this, the Supreme Court modified an August 11 order issued by its three-judge Bench restricting Aadhaar use to only PDS and LPG (cooking gas) distribution.

c)     The Bench said the purely voluntary nature of the use of Aadhaar card to access public service will continue till the court takes a final decision on whether the Aadhaar scheme is an invasion on the right to privacy of the citizen.

9.

Breaking the bonds of rural poverty (Page 13)

a)     International

b)     Social issue

a)     Global hunger

b)     Poverty

c)     Social protection measures

d)     Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)

e)     Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO)

 

a)    According to the author,as a global community, we have made real progress in fighting global hunger and poverty in recent decades. A majority of the countries monitored by the UNsFAO(72 out of the 129) have achieved the MDG target of halving the prevalence of undernourishment in their populations by 2015.

b)     Meanwhile, the share of people in developing regions who live in extreme poverty has come down significantly too -from 43 percent in 1990 to 17 percent this year.But progress has been uneven. Globally, some 800 million people continue to suffer from chronic hunger. Almost 1 billion remain trapped in extreme poverty.

c)   Many nations in developing world have established social protection measures (offering people regular financial or in-kind support, or access to self-help programmes) on the understanding that they are necessary, front-line actions for tackling poverty and hunger.Study after study shows that social protection programmes successfully reduce hunger and poverty. In 2013 alone, such measures lifted around 150 m people out of extreme poverty.

d)     Most of the worlds poor and hungry belong to rural families who depend on agriculture for their daily meals and their very livelihoods. These family farmers and rural labourers are focussed on survival in the here-and-now.

e)     They adopt low-risk, low-return approaches to income-generation, underinvest in the education and health of their children, and are often forced to adopt negative coping strategies such as selling off meagreassets, putting their children to work, or reducing food intake to cut expenses. They become trapped in survival mode. Poverty and hunger become intergenerational and seemingly inescapable.

f)     The evidence shows that social protection increases both on-farm and non-farm activities, strengthening livelihoods and lifting incomes. Social protection also fosters more investment in education and health of children, and reduces child labour.

g)  Social protection in the form of cash increases the purchasing power of the poor, who demand goods and services produced largely in the local economy, leading to a virtuous circle of local economic growth. Social protection programmes also provide a way for communities to make important infrastructure and asset gains.

h)     With most of the worlds poor and hungry still living in the countryside and still dependent on agriculture, twinning social protection with agricultural development programmes makes compelling sense. This is why FAO chose social protection and agriculture as the theme of World Food Day this year.

i)     Political commitment, adequate funding, partnerships, and complementary actions in health and education will be key elements in transforming this vision into reality. Policy and planning frameworks for rural development, poverty reduction, food security and nutrition need to promote the joint role of agriculture and social protection in fighting poverty and hunger, together with a broader set of interventions, notably in health and education.

10.

Rs.2000-cr fund to push financial inclusion (Page 17)

a)     Economy

a)     Financial Inclusion Fund (FIF)

b)     Financial Inclusion Technology Fund (FITF)

c)     RBI

a)    The RBI announced merger of two funds (FIF and FITF) to create a new Financial Inclusion Fund with a corpus of Rs. 2000 crore to support developmental and promotional activities for expanding reach of banking services.

11.

Subsonic cruise missile Nirbhay to be test-fired today (Page 8)

a)     National

b)     S&T

a)     Nirbhay missile

b)    American Tomahawk

a)    The stage is set for test-firing of Nirbhay, Indias long-range subsonic cruise missile from the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur(off Odisha coast) on Oct 16. This would be the third developmental trial of nuclear-weapons capable Nirbhay, which has an operational range of 1000 km.

b)     Stated to be similar to the American Tomahawk, the indigenously-developed low-altitude flying Nirbhay can evade radar detection.

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