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$400 Billion Iran-China Treaty and US Troop withdrawal from Afghanistan – How worried should India be?
Analysis, Asia, Big Block of 4, Featured

$400 Billion Iran-China Treaty and US Troop withdrawal from Afghanistan – How worried should India be?

For the first time in history, China which was moving towards the East is turning to South Asia and the Middle East and trying to play a role in the Indian Ocean region.
China’s interest in Iran was bolstered by decades of Anti-American sentiments there.
China’s aim would also be to contain India’s presence in the Middle-East and cut its influence and relations with Iran.
A destabilized Afghanistan can have its effect on India as they can support terror organizations in Kashmir and aid forces who can indulge in hijacking, kidnapping, drugs trade and other anti-national activities.
For India the happenings in the Middle East, one in Iran and other in Afghanistan, will be a test to its geopolitical strategy.

As 17th BIMSTEC Ministerial Meeting gets underway, here is a brief overview of the sub-regional group
Analysis, Asia, Featured

As 17th BIMSTEC Ministerial Meeting gets underway, here is a brief overview of the sub-regional group

BIMSTEC aims to accelerate economic growth and social progress among members across multiple sectors — trade, technology, energy, transport, tourism and fisheries, agriculture, public health, poverty alleviation, counter-terrorism, environment, culture, people to people contact and climate change.  

Leadership of the group is rotated in alphabetical order of country names. The permanent secretariat is in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Sri Lanka is the host nation this time.

Stable, sovereign and peaceful Afghanistan is the basis for peace and progress in the region – EAM Dr Jaishankar at ‘Heart of Asia’ Ministerial Conference
Asia, Featured, National

Stable, sovereign and peaceful Afghanistan is the basis for peace and progress in the region – EAM Dr Jaishankar at ‘Heart of Asia’ Ministerial Conference

For a durable peace in Afghanistan, what we need is a genuine ‘double peace’, that is, peace within Afghanistan and peace around Afghanistan. It requires harmonizing the interests of all, both within and around that country.
If the peace process is to be successful, then it is necessary to ensure that the negotiating parties continue to engage in good faith, with a serious commitment towards reaching a political solution.
Today, we are striving for a more inclusive Afghanistan that can overcome decades of conflict. But that will happen only if we stay true to principles that Heart of Asia has long embodied. Collective success may not be easy but the alternative is only collective failure.

Boycott of Western Clothing Brands in China – All you need to know
Analysis, Asia, Featured, World

Boycott of Western Clothing Brands in China – All you need to know

Chinese social media is abuzz with calls for boycott and cancellation of licenses of western sports and clothing brands like Adidas, H&M, Nike, Burberry and many others. The calls for boycott of the brands has resulted in an economic and diplomatic fallout. Western clothing brands have lost celebrity endorsement along with customers in China. Here is a ready-reckoner on the entire saga.

Pollution forces Nepal govt to shut schools and colleges for four days
Asia, Featured

Pollution forces Nepal govt to shut schools and colleges for four days

In a concerning development, pollution has forced the Nepal Government to shut all educational institutions for four days starting Tuesday.  The decision is said to be due to the severe deterioration of air quality in recent days. This is the first-ever shutdown of the country’s schools and colleges due to pollution. As per news reports, […]

Quad versus BRICS: Is it Either-Or for India?
Analysis, Big Block of 4, Featured, National

Quad versus BRICS: Is it Either-Or for India?

China’s assertiveness bordering on bullying and expansionism gradually increased to convince the Quad countries to revive the dialogue in 2017
India in conjunction with USA and Japan becomes an eyesore for the CCP because for China to be the ‘middle-kingdom’, India has to remain the second-fiddle in Asia
Quad is geared towards the strategy of ‘Free and Open Indo-Pacific’ (FIPO), and there is only one country in the region that stands out for flouting UNCLOS rules, building artificial islands, territorial water disputes with many countries
A Chinese mouthpiece’s article creates a scenario wherein India seems to be stuck in a zero-sum game- if it chooses Quad, it loses BRICS
Quad is conceptualized exclusively with Chinese expansionism in mind, and its impact on the participating nations. It has clear strategic interests and implications.
BRICS help voice concerns of those neglected by the USA led world order dominated by the developed world to the disadvantage of the developing world.
BRICS is guided by long-term, legitimate goal of making the world order fairer for the global south.
However, if push comes to shove, and India does come to a point where she has to choose between being part of only one of the two groups, India should choose the Quad.

Anti-India resolution backed by Islamists and the Left in Chicago City Council defeated
Featured, National, North America

Anti-India resolution backed by Islamists and the Left in Chicago City Council defeated

A Chicago city anti-India resolution backed by Islamist groups and the Left has been defeated 26-18. The resolution from Council member Maria Hadden sought to condemn India over CAA and ‘violence against certain castes and faith groups’. Maria Hadden, Alderman of Chicago’s 49th ward, is affiliated with the Democratic Party. The agenda driven resolution was […]

Sri Lanka enters into a currency swap agreement with China worth US$ 1.5 billion; Citizens express fear of SL being debt-trapped by China
Asia, Featured, World

Sri Lanka enters into a currency swap agreement with China worth US$ 1.5 billion; Citizens express fear of SL being debt-trapped by China

The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) and the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) have entered into a bilateral currency swap agreement worth US$ 1.5 billion. CBSL says that the agreement was finalised in order to promote bilateral trade and direct investment for economic development of the two countries, and to be used for other […]

US, UK, Canada, EU jointly sanction Chinese officials for persecution of Xinjiang minorities, China responds in kind
Europe, Featured, World

US, UK, Canada, EU jointly sanction Chinese officials for persecution of Xinjiang minorities, China responds in kind

In a tit-for-tat move the US, UK, Canada, EU and China have sanctioned each others officials over the persecution of Muslim minorities in Xinjiang. On March 22, US, UK, Canada, and EU announced sanctions on Chinese officials who are connected to the human rights abuses in Xinjiang. Not to be taken lightly, China quickly retaliated […]