UPSC IAS The Hindu Current Affairs 11th 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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11 April 2018
Aadhar – PAN link doesn’t vitiate privacy
Government of India, UIDAI in their argument stated that linking PAN with Aadhar do not vitiate Privacy.
Union water resource ministry stated that cauvery water management board or authority do not really matter. It can be either a judicial or Administrative body.
South solidarity on finances opens Anti BJP front
Finance ministers of southern states developed a common forum to fight recommendations of 15th finance commission. Their major objections are
- finance commission terms of references are unilaterally framed.
- Centre is planning to decrease vertical devolution of funds to fund its centrally sponsored schemes.
- In horizontal distribution, there is an undue advantage given to highly populated states by weighing population on 2011 census.
Rajya Sabha Dy Chairman election
Against the tradition of giving dy chairman position to opposition, an election is expected to be held.
A fresh deadline
Supreme Court of India, much to the embarrassment of union Government has asked it to prove its bonafides by submitting a draft scheme for the court’s consideration by May 3. It appears that union Government gave priority to electoral and political considerations rather than to legal obligations in relation to appointment of Cauvery management board.
Fifteen Years after
The architects of Iraq war – Bush and Blair are still not made accountable for their actions. War against Iraq is based on two accusations – existence of weapons of mass destruction and connections with Al Qaeda. Both of them are proven wrong. Chilcot report in UK has clearly stated.
Post war management disrupted state structure in Iraq, disbanded military, gave rise to Al qaeda, islamic state. In this scenario, Iraq war stands as a classical example of failure of International system.
A new Beginning with Nepal
Nepal Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli made his first maiden trip to India after swearing in as Prime Minister. His Previous stint as Prime Minister is a point of low in bilateral relations between India and Nepal. His election rhetoric based on anti Indianism has further wounded the relations. In this scenario, present visit is expected to revive and normalise the relations.
Issues between India and Nepal that need attention are
- Infrastructure projects – 4 integrated check posts ( only Raxul – Birgunj is operational)
- Mothari – Amlekhgunj cross border petroleum products pipeline.
- Misperceptions related to Kosi and Gandak barrage
- Realisation of hydro electricity potential in Nepal
- Road and postal network in terai region.
- Revision of India – Nepal friendship treaty – 1950
- Recruitment of Nepali citizens in to Gorkha regiment of Indian army.
- Resolving the fallout of 2016 demonetisation exercise,
- Resumption of SAARC summit process
- Completion of long pending hydel power projects like Pancheswar dam.
As political instability is a thing of past in Nepal, it is the right time to address these things.
A register by the people
Draft National forest policy needs improvement on two fronts
- Data accuracy – present data collection for state of forest report takes tea gardens and other commercial plantations in to the calculations of forest cover. This need to be changed.
- Decentralisation and integration with existing environmental policies and legislations – Bio diversity act mandates setting up of bio diversity management committee in each local body. The committee will prepare People’s Bio diversity registers. Such people centric registers can give a better detail on conservation practices.
- As on today, forest management is a centralised, Government run exercise. It need to be made community centric.
India has always been selective in human rights discussions.
Opinions of Salil Shetty on Human rights in India
- Social media needs regulation – entire Anti Rohingya campaign in Myanmar ran on facebook.
- Governments are becoming intolerant in handling dissent, progress and Public accountability. There is an effort to delegitimise dissent.
- Human rights issues are positioned as debates between human rights and development, security and rights. It need to be understood that arc of morality is always drawn towards Justice and truth. It is not human rights and security . It is human rights with security.
- India has always been very ambivalent and selective on human rights discussions.
- Eco Tourism centres
- Wildlife crime control Bureau
- Competition commission of India
- Finance commission of India
- Election of dy chairman of RS