UPSC IAS The Hindu Current Affairs 3rd April 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.
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03 April 2018
9 dead as Dalits protests over SC/ST act rock north India
Nation wide bandh against the alleged dilution of SC, ST(prevention of atrocities) act – 1989 turned violent.
On March 20, supreme court of India gave a judgement to avoid the misuse of act. It has diluted provisions of section 18 of the act and allowed accused persons under the act to apply for anticipatory bail.
The Judgement also directed that FIR should be registered only after a preliminary inquiry was held by an officer of rank of DY.S.P. it is check frivolous complaints.
It is argued that, act is weakly implemented instead of misused. So, conviction rate is very low in atrocities cases. Section 18 is stated to be the backbone that caused deterrence and instils a sense of protection among SC/ST.
China imposes tariffs on USA goods
China in tit for tat move imposed tariffs on USA goods. This is expected to affect global trade badly.
Malaysia approves law against fake news
Supreme court of India in its final judgement demarcated share of water to various states and also stated for constitution of Cauvery management board with in 6 weeks. Central Government has asked for more clarification on the matter. Tamil Nadu looks for an immediate constitution of board and Karnataka opines that supreme court has adjudged for a dispute resolution mechanism rather than a management board.
Political and electoral considerations appears to have directed centre’s actions and it actions are aimed to buy time till Karnataka elections are over.
A clarifying vote
No trust motion is pending against Prime Minister Ranil wickramsinghe Government in Sri Lanka. This vote is expected to expose internal rifts in national unity Government and differences between president Sirisena and Prime Minister rail wickramsinghe.
Big Thaw on Korean peninsula
Korean peninsula is in the midst of diplomatic upheaval. President Kim and president Trump are expected to meet in May. In this scenario, North is looking for lifting of sanctions, regime protection and security.
Kim also promises of denuclearisation of Korean peninsula. But, this to happen Negotiations need to o further deeper to address issues like
- removal of US nuclear umbrella for south korea
- Presence of American troops on south Korean soil
- Converting 1953 armistice in to a peace treaty etc.
On the other hand china also wants a peaceful Korean Peninsula for the reason that it will not provide a greater leverage to USA to involve in east Asian affairs. USA’s deployment of THAAD missiles in south Korea is not in interests of China.
On the other hand, North Korean leader caused a huge embarrassment to china by conducting nuclear and missile tests when it is hosting G 20, Belt and road forum, BRICS summit.
There is also an international pressure on China to reign in North Korea as it provides for lifeline to North Korea. 90% of North Korea trade is with China.
Federalism and Fairness
India is designed as a indestructible union of destructible states. It is to suit to the needs of the day and it is described as union of states rather than the federation of states.
Today, demands for cultural and linguistic autonomy, fairer distribution of taxes, constitutional claim for autonomy are increasing.
Karnataka unfurling its state flag, southern sates objections to recommendations of 15th finance commission are a reflection of this.
]federalism can only survive based on trust. Southern states believe that though they contribute economically, they are marginalised politically and culturally. It needs to be addressed.
Art3 of the constitution has served India better to address the demands of sub Nationalism and hold federation together.
Sharing data across borders
Indian investigative agencies have no access to data stored in servers located outside country. MNC operating from USA need not divulge information as requested by investigating agencies in breach of confidentiality of their customers.
Existing process to ask for information need to be applied through India-USA mutual legal assistance treaty and it is a laborious process.
USA has passed a law – CLOUD act clarifying lawful overseas use of data act – According to which a country can enter in to data sharing agreement with USA to access data of their own citizens. But there is a caveat. Country needs to have a rule of law and protection of privacy and civil liberties.
Millets and wheat over rice and meat
Micro nutrient deficiency in India can be addressed through changing find habits. Change to cereals and pulses , leafy vegetables , coconut can help.
Tragedy of errors
Rise of resentment in Kashmir against central Government has many reasons. They are
- Rhetoric on scrapping of Art 370
- Arrest of Sheik Abdullah in 1953
- Indira – Sheikh abdullah has pulled national conference in to the fold of congress. Later, it got consolidated with reinstatement of Farooq Abdullah as chief minister. It delegitimised national conference.
- Electoral malpractices in 1987 elections. Muslim united front lost elections due to malpractices. It has created doubts on democracy and many of the contested candidates took weapons.