1. India’s relation with neighboring countries:-
- India shares borders with all other South Asian nations which is our asset; the value of this asset is determined by our relationship with them.
- China’s overwhelming presence in our neighbouring countries, deterioration of our relationship with our neighbors.
- Nepal has comfortable relationship with china than India.
- The spiritual link between India and Nepal is reduced over a dispute related to Kala Pani.
- Kathmandu staying away from the multilateral BIMSTEC (counterterrorism exercise) and also refusing the US-sponsored Millenium Challenge Cooperation Grant (that upgrades Nepal’s electricity transmission system and connects it to the Indian power grid).
- In Bangladesh, Muslims has feared regarding new citizenship law, the NRC and the NPR but India has assured that the NRC is an internal issue
- But the Bangladeshi Muslims are painted that enemies eroding India. There is a discontent in the relation between them.
India can overcome above challenges:-
- BBIN (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal) signed a motor vehicles agreement which should be speedily implemented.
- The India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway needs a renewed push.
- Medical tourism, education, arts and culture — the entire soft power can be used to generate and renew connections between the youth.
- Our progress mainly depends upon our sustained relation with our neighbors.
2. Supreme Court expands rights for daughters:-
- The Supreme Court held that daughters will have coparcenary right or equal right to family property by birth, irrespective of whether her father was alive or not granting retrospectively.
- It aims at ensuring “right of equality” of a daughter in a Hindu Undivided Family.
- Parliament recognized this right by amending the Hindu Succession Act of 1956.
- The ruling is advancement towards gender justice according to Article 15.
- The present law is against to Mitakshara coparcenary law.
Mitakshara school of Hindu laws:
- The Mitakshara school of Hindu laws are governed of succession and inheritance of property but only recognised males as legal heirs.
- The law applied to everyone who is not a Muslim, Christian, Parsi or Jew by religion.
- Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains and followers of Arya Samaj, Brahmo Samaj are also considered as Hindus in this law.
- Traditionally, only male descendants of a common ancestor along with their mothers, wives and unmarried daughters are considered a joint Hindu family.
3. Recommendation for Implementing Clause 6 of Assam Accord:-
- As protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act across Assam, the state government has promised a speedy implementation of clause 6 of Assam Accord as a measure to protect the interests of the “indigenous” people of Assam.
- For this purpose, State Government has formed a committee to implement clause 6 of Assam Accord.
- According to committee Report the definition of ‘Assamese People’ should include Indigenous Tribal’s as well as other Indigenous Communities of Assam, all other citizens of India residing in the territory of Assam on or before 01.01.1951 and Indigenous Assamese — and their descendants.
- The 1985 Assam Accord set a cut-off of midnight of March 24, 1971, for the detection of “illegal foreigners” in Assam and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) preparation in Assam uses the same cut-off.
- According to the recommendations, people who migrated between 1951 and 1971, including large sections of post-Partition refugees would be Indian citizens under the Assam Accord and the NRC but they would not be eligible for “Assamese people” under Clause 6 of the Accord.
- The report recommended numerous reservations for “Assamese people”, like 80 to 100% of Assam’s seats in Parliament; and the same proportion in Assembly and local bodies (inclusive of pre-existing reservations).
- It recommended reservation of 80 to 100% of Group C and D level posts in all government and private sector jobs in Assam “Assamese people”.
- The recommendations also include the implementation of an Inner Line Permit (ILP) regime in the state.
- The ILP is system in which a special permit is required by people from other regions of India to visit the state.
- The report also stressed on land rights that land rights be confined to the ‘Assamese people’ by putting restrictions on transferring land other than ‘Assamese people’.
Clause 6 of the Accord:-
The Clause 6 of the Assam Accord says Constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards as may be appropriate, shall be provided to protect, preserve and promote the cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the Assamese people.
4. Loya Jirga:-
Recently,The Loya Jirga has been convened in Afghanistan to decide on freeing about 400 Taliban fighters after the Afghanistan President refused to release the Taliban prisoners. This threatened the derailment of intra-Afghan talks.
About Loya Jirga:-
- It is a mass national gathering that brings together representatives from the various ethnic, religious, and tribal communities in Afghanistan.
- According to the Afghan Constitution, a Loya Jirga is considered the highest expression of the Afghan people. It is not an official decision-making body and its decisions are not legally binding.
- However, the Loya Jirga’s decision is seen as final, with the president and parliament expected to respect the ruling.
- The US announced to withdraw its forces and reduced its strength after pushing Afghanistan government to release the Taliban prisoners, and for the Taliban to release Afghan soldiers and civilians in its custody.
- The US government has been speed up the Taliban-Afghan reconciliation process because of Presidential elections in US.
- The prisoner exchanges are part of the agreements signed by the USA and Taliban and the USA and Afghanistan government in February 2020.
- However, these were delayed in intra-Afghan talks.
India’s Interests in Afghanistan:
- India has a major stake in the stability of Afghanistan. India has invested considerable resources in Afghanistan’s development. E.g. the Afghan Parliament, the Zaranj-Delaram Highway, Afghanistan-India Friendship Dam (Salma Dam) among others.
- India favours the continuation of the current Afghanistan government in power, which it considers a strategic asset over Pakistan.
- An increased political and military role for the Taliban and the expansion of its territorial control should be of great concern to India.
- Afghanistan is the gateway to Central Asia.
- Withdrawal of US troops could result in the breeding of the fertile ground for various anti-India terrorist outfits.
- India should support any genuine peace process in Afghanistan.
- India should not recognise or publicly engage the Taliban until it recognises the Afghanistan government.
5. Geothermal springs in Himalayas:Scientists of the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology (WIHG) recently conducted a study on Geothermal springs in Himalayas.
Key observations and findings:
Geothermal springs in Garhwal region of the Himalayas are releasing a huge amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
CO2 in these thermal springs are sourced from metamorphic decarbonate of carbonate rocks present deep in the Himalayancore.
What are hot/geothermal springs?
A hot spring is a spring produced by the emergence of geothermally heated groundwater that rises from the Earth’s crust.