Analysis

What is the New START treaty between US-Russia and why has India welcomed its extension?
Analysis, Featured, World

What is the New START treaty between US-Russia and why has India welcomed its extension?

The New Start treaty, signed in 2010, limits the number of long-range nuclear warheads that the US and Russia can possess.
The New START aims to prevent another arms race from unfolding, and reduces the risk of an accidental escalation.
Given unrealistic demands from the Trump administration to extend the New START treaty, Moscow and Washington were forced to wait until the inauguration of Biden administration
India hopes that the New START triggers a debate on complete withdrawal of nuclear weapons while restricting it to production of clean energy.

‘Toolkit’ tweeted by Greta Thunberg reveals anti-India propaganda and global campaign to create unrest in India
Analysis, Featured, National, World

‘Toolkit’ tweeted by Greta Thunberg reveals anti-India propaganda and global campaign to create unrest in India

A ‘Toolkit‘ tweeted by climate change activist Greta Thunberg revealed the sinister global campaign against India in the name of expressing solidarity with farmers.
The documents clearly reveal that the tweets by global celebrities, online support for farmers protests in New Delhi and offline campaigns are anything but organic.
The documents listed a series of actions that people across the world could take to support the ‘farmer protests’ and also listed actions that had been undertaken.
The document containing a ‘tweet bank’ made it clear that the global attempts to incite unrest in India had begun prior to the Republic Day riots.
The role of banned Khalistani organisation Sikhs For Justice (SFJ) in the entire campaign has gathered credence based on the information obtained from the same toolkit.

Turkey students intensify protests against Erdogan government’s high-handedness, stifling of freedom of speech and expression
Analysis, Europe, Featured, World

Turkey students intensify protests against Erdogan government’s high-handedness, stifling of freedom of speech and expression

The protests which started against the politically motivated appointment of a rector who was close to Presidnet Erdogan, have now diversified into other issues of stifling of freedom of speech and expression by Erdogan’s government.
Erdoğan called the protesting students as “terrorists,” accusing them of exploiting a “routine appointment” to stir unrest at other universities.
The government seems to be in no mood to listen to the protesting students as police barricades and security forces in riot gear have been lined up on the streets since Feb 1st near the main entrance of Istanbul’s Bogazici University.
Early this week, four students were arrested in Istanbul over an artwork that reportedly depicted LGBT rainbow symbols alongside an image of a sacred Islamic site.
The student anger during the past few weeks had been simmering since 2016 when Erdogan abolished university rector elections and instead gave power to his government to appoint rectors and other officials at the universities after the coup attempt to unseat him.
The current clampdown on students and universities has put Turkey at the bottom of the Academic Freedom Index alongside countries like Libya, Iran, North Korea and China.

Military Coup in Myanmar: China angle and its effect on India
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Military Coup in Myanmar: China angle and its effect on India

In January, the Chinese government’s top diplomat, Wang Yi, met military chief Min Aung Hlaing during a visit to Myanmar. Min Aung Hlaing has now assumed power after overthrowing the civilian government.
When western countries criticised the Suu Kyi government’s response to the Rohingya crisis, China chose to remain silent.
Myanmar ministers had openly warned against falling into the Chinese “debt trap” and costs of many China funded projects were reduced drastically. China had proposed 38 projects under CMEC but Myanmar had approved only nine.
Myanmar had also rejected China’s request to conduct joint naval exercises and an offer of a submarine from China. Instead, Myanmar chose to acquire its first ever submarine for the Myanmar Navy from India
Observers believe that the growing closeness with India could have forced China to exercise power by influencing a section of Myanmar military which was close to it and take control.
India has a great challenge in the neighborhood. It would be ideal for it and the subcontinent if Myanmar returns to democracy where people’s opinion is counted over dictates from Beijing.

India 2021 Budget – AatmaNirbhar Bharat, a Self-reliant India is the name of the game
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India 2021 Budget – AatmaNirbhar Bharat, a Self-reliant India is the name of the game

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that Budget proposals will further strengthen the Sankalp of Nation First, Doubling Farmer’s Income, Strong Infrastructure, Healthy India, Good Governance, Opportunities for youth, Education for All, Women Empowerment, and Inclusive Development among others.
The Budget proposals for 2021-22 rest on 6 pillars, which will aid in taking the country towards becoming a ‘self-reliant’ nation
There is substantial increase in investment in Health Infrastructure and the Budget outlay for Health and Wellbeing is Rs 2,23,846 crore in BE 2021-22 as against this year’s BE of Rs 94,452 crore, an increase of 137 percentage.
Finance Minister said that for a USD 5 trillion economy, our manufacturing sector has to grow in double digits on a sustained basis.
Under the pillar of Inclusive Development for Aspirational India, the Finance Minister announced to cover Agriculture and Allied sectors, farmers’ welfare and rural India, migrant workers and labour, and financial inclusion.
Government has introduced the National Commission for Allied Healthcare Professionals Bill in Parliament, with a view to ensure transparent and efficient regulation of the 56 allied healthcare professions.
“This budget will bring several positive changes for individuals, investors, industry and infrastructure sector” PM Modi said.

India’s Humanitarian Aid reflects its age-old ethos of “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam”
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India’s Humanitarian Aid reflects its age-old ethos of “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam”

When the world was reeling under COVID-19, India under the leadership of PM Narendra Modi, stepped up to provide medical assistance to not only domestic but also to other countries in the world.
India does not in any way wish to dominate any country in the world with forced drought, control of river flows, debt traps, changing land, air, water boundaries
Donors’ clubs like the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development), or China’s Credit have attached conditionalities to the assistance they offer. China is known to use aid to further their commercial interests eg Resources, Military Strategy, Strategic and economic goals.
The 2015 Nepal earthquake, one of the deadliest in its history, India, launched Operation Maitri by deploying the Indian Army, the Air Force, and other specialised teams.
Some of the big-ticket aid programmes that have propelled India into the donors league include a $1 billion (about Rs 5,630 crore) line of credit to Bangladesh and pledges of $2 billion in reconstruction assistance to Afghanistan.
In October 2018, the ‘India for Humanity’ initiative was launched to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and honour his service to humanity.
During the current Corona crisis, India has extended COVID-related medical assistance including testing kits, protective gear and Hydroxychloroquine and other medicines to around 90 plus countries

Shinzo Abe honoured with Padma Vibhushan: Here is how India-Japan ties were redefined under him
Analysis, Asia, Featured, National

Shinzo Abe honoured with Padma Vibhushan: Here is how India-Japan ties were redefined under him

Abe’s approach to foreign policy was seen as a radical change in Japanese politics since his first term. Though he continued the policy of his predecessors of improving relations with all countries, Abe took a hard-line stance against North Korea and China.
From upgrading Japan-India relationship to initiating the QUAD, Abe has proven to be a friend of India like no other.
In order to tackle expansionist threats, Japan and India inked the Acquisition and Cross-Servicing Agreement (ACSA) which will give the Indian Navy access to the Japanese military base in Djibouti and the Japanese Navy access to Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
Under Abe, Japan emerged as an important source of overseas development assistance and foreign investment for India. New Delhi and Tokyo began to work together in Africa, working on alternative supply chains and on a strategic partnership in the Indo-Pacific region.
The Abe era also played an instrumental role in enabling India’s economic modernisation. Tokyo is not just a leading source of Official Development Assistance (ODA), but also a top source of foreign direct investment. From mega industrial corridors, high- speed rail and modernising urban rapid transport system, Japanese development assistance has been instrumental in increasing India’s productivity and economic output.
Shinzo Abe’s tenure will be the guiding light to the alliance and there is unlikely to be any loss in transition. The vibrant tenure of Abe also showed the areas in which the two countries have to continue to work on.

Chanakya’s Six-fold policy and its relevance for diplomacy in the emerging world
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Chanakya’s Six-fold policy and its relevance for diplomacy in the emerging world

Chanakya’s Six-fold policy deals with war and peace with the neighbouring states and how a king should assess his power and what actions he needs to take to deal with the states.
A wise king will scrutinize as to which of the policies he can adopt to take his kingdom toward progress.
Relating this to the current era where war is the least priority, countries have used the alliance ploys to a greater effect
Causing unrest among the civilian population, dividing people on religion, caste etc., leading to the economic failure of the country are ploys used to weaken a country
Applying Chanakya’s policies to emerging world scenarios can open up many more strategies to protect ourselves from foreign intervention

China in Myanmar: Kokang, Debt Trap and Economic Corridor
Analysis, Asia, Featured

China in Myanmar: Kokang, Debt Trap and Economic Corridor

Insurgent groups like MNDAA are part of a wider rebel alliance in northern Myanmar which also includes ethnic Palaung, Kachin and Arakanese forces and is supported by the powerful China-backed United Wa State Army.
Top Kokang leadership went to China, where they received training and promises of support to run the nationalist Chinese Kuomintang KMT out of Myanmar.
Myanmar has pointed fingers at Beijing for arming insurgent groups with sophisticated weapons and sought international cooperation to suppress rebel groups.
When the Myanmar military busted a huge cache of weapons including surface-to-air missiles from the insurgents, most were Chinese weapons
There has been a view in Naypyitaw that China was using its influence with the terror groups as a bargaining chip for smooth implementation of Belt and Road Initiative projects in Myanmar

China committing crimes against humanity and possibly genocide in Xinjiang, Hong Kong and Tibet says US Congressional Executive Commission on China
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China committing crimes against humanity and possibly genocide in Xinjiang, Hong Kong and Tibet says US Congressional Executive Commission on China

The US Congressional-Executive Commission on China (Commission) found that the Chinese government and Communist Party have taken unprecedented steps to extend their repressive policies in Xinjiang, Hong Kong and Tibet
The report says that disturbing new evidence has emerged of a systematic and widespread policy of forced sterilization and birth suppression of the Uyghur and other minority populations.
In Hong Kong, the “one country, two systems” framework has been dismantled, severely undermining the rule of law and respect for human rights that the territory has long enjoyed, says CECC.
In Tibet, the report observes that religious freedom continued to be severely curtailed as new measures have been implemented to manage and shape Tibetan Buddhism as part of the policy of “sinicizing religion.”
Chinese officials used the heavy hand of repression, censorship, and secrecy to control the public narrative during the outbreak of the COVID–19 pandemic, says the report.
Other findings include Criminal law and police power in China that continued to be used to punish government critics, rights advocates, religious believers, and ethnic minority groups.
CECC co-chair, Democratic Representative Jim McGovern, called China’s actions to crush human rights in the past year “shocking and unprecedented” and urged Congress and the incoming Biden administration to hold Beijing accountable.