UPSC IAS The Hindu Current Affairs 14 Feb 2018 highlights are:
- They allow for flexibility to continue political engagement and economic cooperation with their common adversary.
- They avoid entrapment of being dragged in to a partners dispute and potentially in to a conflict.
- At the same time, strategic partnership provides for regular political and military interactions for a collaborative approach to strategic policies.
India and Japan relations perfectly figure in to the above relationship.
- India will not get deep in to Japan disputes and the same is the case with Japan. A mutual cooperation exists on the wider issues where win win situation exists.
Important developments of India – Japan special strategic and global partnership are
- Japan is the only country India allowed to invest in infrastructure in North east.
- There is a joint infrastructure project development – Asia – Africa Growth corridor.
- Japan and India agreed to have annual summits and 2+ 2 format for defence and foreign ministers meeting.
- India is buying ShinMaywa Amphibious ships from Japan.
- Japan is investing in infrastructure development in Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
Nuclear deal in danger
Trump’s continuous tirade against Iran nuclear deal appears to be an end to Obama era pragmatism. Nuclear deal was successfully able to stop Iran form developing a nuclear weapon. Added to this, Iran never violated the deal. In these circumstances USA imposing sanctions against Iran, will set a dangerous precedent in international agreements. Iran nuclear deal being multilateral agreement, President shall end his rhetoric.
A big broom
Government effort to release names of shell companies, Name and shame its directors may not yield sufficient results to fight unaccounted money. In the process, there is a possibility of harassing genuine companies or directors.
The best way forward is to arrest systemic shortcomings.
Tax payer rights and obligations
Indian tax administration system shall move from an enforcement to a service based model. Intentions of reforms are good but they are reactive. DTAA, GAAR, transfer price mechanism, implementation of GST all have challenges.
improvement in taxpayers’ service, enhanced use of information and communication technology, exchange of information with other agencies, expansion of tax base, compliance management, etc. Need to be improved to make tax administration Service oriented.
Beyond social Media
In India Geographical indications (Registration and protection) act 1999 has provided for registration of Geographical indications. There is no effective monitoring mechanism for quality compliance of the same. Unlike this in the European regulation clearly provides for monitoring at multiple levels. India also shall have the same.
14 February 2018
Rift in srilanka’s coalition
Loss of local government elections have widened the rift between srilankan freedom party and united national party.
The danger of counterfactuals
Think on these
- One single narrative to explain India’s partition is simplification of history.
- Communalisation of Indian society is developed over years. Britishers sown the seeds for that.
- Communalism is about considering religion as only basis for social community. Here, religious group feels having a common interest and it can be threatened by other group. When these groups compete for common spatial material resources, it can lead to a conflict. Communalism among majority leads to majoritarianism and communalism among minorities leads to demand for a separate political entity.
- Politicisation of religious identities can lead to a massive violence.
How to handle big data
Big data can be useful and can also be misleading. Google flu trends has gone horribly wrong in predicting prevalence of flu. So, big data need to be used along with proper statistical tools.
Narendra Modi’s visit signals Indian strategy to grow ties with Israel and Palestine separately – dehyphenation of India’s relations with Palestine and Israel can be better serving Indian interests for the following reasons.
- India is seeking help from Israel for its defence, agriculture and technology needs.
- At the same time, India is dependant on Arab national for its energy needs.
so, Prime Minister of India has clearly expressed Indian position by calling for a sovereign and independant Palestine country in a peaceful atmosphere. Specifics are leftout.
Woods and trees
India’s state of forests report 2017 states that 24.4% of India’s land area is under forest cover. Environmental policy aims to raise it to 33%. Tree cover is not the same as having a bio diverse, old growth forests. so, forest restoration should aid the return off native vegetation. Added to this, benefits forests cause to flood control and climate change phenomena need to be taken in to national accounts.