A second chance to prove legacy: SC (GS-2) (Page-7) Justice Ranjan Gogoi on the Special Bench hearing the Assam National Register of Citizens (NRC) case observed on Wednesday that by allowing the claimants to file extra papers, the apex court was actually giving them a second chance' to prove their Indian legacy. "Usually, the process of claims and objections would have been restricted to whether the initial verification done on the originally submitted legacy documents was correct or not. But we are doing this as a concession knowing that the possibility of misuse is enormous," Justice Gogoi orally observed, before passing the order to begin the process for receiving claims and objections from 40 lakh persons left out of the draft NRC.The Bench, which ordered NRC Co-ordinator Prateek Hajela to file a report on the reliability of the five documents left out, said it was apprehensive that these were "capable of being manufactured" The five documents are: names in NRC, 1951; names in electoral roll up to March 24, 1971; citizenship certificate; refugee registration certificate; certified copies of pre-97 electoral roll, particularly, those issued from the State of Tripura; and ration card
Cabinet clears 3,466 crore dam improvement project (GS-2) (Page-7) The government has approved a 65% hike, and extended by two years, a project to improve the stability and working of dams in II States. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved the Dam Rehabilitation Improvement Project (DRIP) project on Wednesday. Out of the 3,466 crore cleared, 2,628 crore would be funded by the World Bank and 747 crore by the States and Implementing Agencies (IAs), and the balance 9 crore by the Central Water Commission (CWC). Originally, the total cost of DRIP was 2,100 crore with the States expected to fund 1,968 crore and the Centre 32 crore. Initially, the six-year project commenced on April 1 8, 201 2, with a scheduled closing on June 30, 201 8. This has now been extended to June 2020.A dam safety Bill that sets directives on how the States and the Centre ought to have an institutional mechanism to better manage dams is still to be discussed in Parliament.
The (DRP) Project will improve the safety and operational performance of selected existing dams and mitigate risks to ensure safety of downstream population and property. The primary beneficiaries are both urban and rural communities dependent on reservoir and downstream communities, who are prone to risk associated with dam failure or operational failure" said a press statement accompanying the decision. Six monthly reviews There are 198 existing dams in Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha,Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Jharkhand (DamodarValley Corporation) and Uttarakhand (Uttarakhand Jal Vidyut Nigam Limited) that would benefit from the project. In lieu of the funds, dam managers would have to adhere to recommendations by the CWC as well as subject themselves to six monthly reviews by the World Bank and an audit by an independent French agency, said an official in the Union Water Ministry, who did not wish to be identified. Kerala, which saw devastating floods and questions raised on the management of its dams, will see 16 of the reservoirs managed by its Water Resources Department and 12 by that State's Electricity Department, get funded under the DRIP programme to the tune of 514 crore. "This money was locked in and sent for approval before the floods. Moreover, the Mullapenyar dam-located in Kerala and isn't one of those to be rehabilitated," the official quoted above added. owned by Tami Nadu
With PM Modi, Afghan President Ghani raises issues of IS, Pakistan terrorists (GS-2) (Page-10) Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani on Wednesday discussed with Prime Minister Narendra Modi the growing presence of the IS (Da'esh) in Afghanistan, and the continuing influx of terrorists from Pakistan, during his day-long visit to Delhi, government sources said S. Meanwhile, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) has announced that Kabul has deported an Indian national who had travelled to Afghanistan in an attempt to join the Islamic State. According to a statement from the NIA, the Afghan government deported Nashidul Hamzafar, 26, who had illegally entered the country to join the Islamic State in 2017. He had reportedly travelled from India to Afghanistan via Muscat, Oman and then through Iran, and was detained by the Afghan security forces shortly after. Talks with Taliban At a reception hosted by think tank India Forum later, Mr. Ghani said it was necessary to separate such external elements from the Taliban, which, he said, must be engaged in a peace process. "Taliban are part of our society. Foreigners, members of Daesh, these international networks are different. So we need to devise a way to separate what is internal to what is regional and global," he said, making a strong pitch for talks with the Taliban, something India had traditionally opposed
An official said New Delhi would back the Afghan government on its decision to engage the Taliban in talks that are "Afghan- owned, Afghan-led." Mr. Ghani said the talks had the support of the Afghan people, which was seen during the ld ceasefire in June this year, which the Taliban joined, a week after attacks had seen 1,000 people die. "During the ceasefire, over 30,000 Taliban came to the cities Were they greeted with hatred? Were they lynched? were they shot at? No. You saw scenes of all Afghans join in the celebrations and accepting each other.The most important thing we learned from the ceasefire is that Afghan people as a nation are willing to forego the past in order to gain the future," President Ghani said. Peace with the Taliban was important so that security forces could concentrate on fighting other terrorist groups like the Islamic State, he said. Siege of Ghazni During his meeting with Mr. Modi, President Ghani made a special mention of the siege of Ghazni city in August where a sizeable number of foreign fighters had fought alongside the Taliban. "He said at least 100 attackers of Ghazni came from Pakistan and they were identified as Pakistani nationals," said the government source.
S. Korea wants to elevate ties with India' (GS-2/3) (Page-12) One of the major foreign policy initiatives of President Moon Jae-in of South Korea is the government's New Southern Policy. with a goal of deepening ties with South East Asian nations as well as India and building an inclusive regional architecture in Asia, said an expert. In an interaction with a group of Indian journalists, Choe Wong, head of the Centre for ASEAN-India Studies at Korea National Diplomatic Academy, said there were similarities "between our approach and that of India towards regional issues". Concerns about BRI "India wants to be more vocal about maritime security in the region. We are aware of it.There are increasing activities by China in the Indian Ocean region. There are concerns about the BRI (Belt and Road Initiative).. Nobody is appreciating what they are doing in the South China Sea. But a confrontational approach is not good," he said. "China is... the largest trading partner of most countries in Asia. Whether we like China or not, we have to live with it" said Mr. Choe, who's involved in training South Korean diplomats. He added that South Korea's main policy objective was not to get subsumed into the US.-China rivalry in Asia. "The US. Indo- Pacific policy is simple.We have to play by the rules. There are no exceptions. Even China is not an exception..[lf the U.S. takes an aggressive approach, we can't be part of it. That's the message from regional countries. What we need is an inclusive regional architecture in Asia."
He added that South Korea, as part of this strategy, wants to build stronger ties with ASEAN and India on multiple fronts economic, bilateral and strategic. "India is the main partner in expanding our economy in the South. Rising unemployment is a major problem. The economy is in a stagnant state.We have to expand and diversify our economic portfolio," Mr. Choe said. India and South Korea have agreed to boost bilateral trade to $50 billion by 2030 from $20 billion now. At the diplomatic level, Mr. Choe said Seoul wanted to elevate ties with India to the level of those with four other major powers around the Korean Peninsulathe U.S., China, Russia and Japan.Asked about South Korea's approach towards the BRI, he said: "We welcome BRI. But China is pursuing BRI projects unilaterally or bilaterally. That's the problem...We want BRI to be more open and transparent."
Hyun Oh-Seok, a former Finance Minister of South Korea, said countries that are part of the BRI projects and borrow money from China should be cautious "Recipient countries should be cautious with China.You can blame China. But the recipient countries should also be blamed" he said, referring to allegations of debt trap weaker countries get into while welcoming China to build big-ticket infrastructure projects "There has to be some kind of rules to deal with debt trap, etc. We have to set the rules," he said. Mr. Hyun, who's an adviser at the Beijing-led Asian Infrastructure Bank, said India has huge potential to play a bigger role in international politics."It might play a bigger role in the coming years."
India not involved in Palaly airport project, says Minister (GS-2) (Page-12) India is not involved in developing Sri Lanka's northern airport, a senior Minister has said, contradicting a statement by the Airports Authority of India (AAI). S. Earlier this week, Indian media reported that the AAI had signed an agreement with the Ministry of External Affairs, to prepare a detailed project report for the development of the airport in Palaly, located some 20 km north of Jaffna in the island's Tamil-majority Northern Province. However, Minister for Transport and Civil Aviation Nirmal Siripala De Silva told Parliament on Tuesday that "there is no truth in that report.We have no intention to hand over the airport to India or any other country", according to local newspaper Daily Mirror. His statement, which came in response to a question from an Opposition lawmaker, not only countered what the AAl has said, but also contradicted Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe's recent remarks that Sri Lanka would develop the northern airport into a regional hub with Indian assistance. Colombo and New Delhi have been keen on beginning commercial operations from this airport, with flights to south Indian cities.
Graduate in Economics. Gold medal in Dissertation, Prepared various documents on Demonetisation and GST, Share-trading and many more