Showing posts with label India. Show all posts
Showing posts with label India. Show all posts

24 April 2018

Stand Up Against China

Lt Gen Prakash Menon

India should not seek a reset with China that is based on our inferiority. We can and must assert ourselves.

Some of India’s chickens of statecraft have come home to roost. India has embarked on a “reset of relations” with China and simultaneously seeks to “redefine ties” with the USA. The simultaneity is structurally imperative when it comes to India’s role in the context of great power tensions.

In the case of China, it is based on its enormous economic and military power. The Indian political leadership seems convinced that China’s coercive power does not call for a confrontation, but instead demands a form of adjustment that would serve to preserve our national development goals. With the USA, a partnership founded on common interests is expected to provide political, strategic and technological support that can further Indian goals. The reset would also involve a tilt away from the USA, to perhaps, a slightly less-than-neutral position.

How Tibet lost its independence and India its gentle neighbour

It relates to the sequence of events and the role of KM Panikkar, the Indian Ambassador in China, during the weeks after the invasion of Tibet. Claude Arpi, holding the Field Marshal KM Cariappa Chair of Excellence from the United Service Institution of India (USI), for his research on the Indian Presence in Tibet 1947-1962 (in 4 volumes), has extensively worked in the National Archives of India and well the Nehru Library (on the Nehru Papers) on the history of Tibet, the Indian frontiers and particularly the Indian Frontier Administrative Service. The Last Months of a Free Nation — India Tibet Relations (1947-1962) is the first volume of the series, using never-accessed-before Indian archival material. Though Tibet’s system of governance had serious lacunas, the Land of Snows was a free and independent nation till October 1950, when Mao decided to “liberate”it. But “liberate” from what, was the question on many diplomats' and politicians' lips in India; they realised that it would soon be a tragedy for India too; Delhi would have to live with a new neighbor, whose ideology was the opposite of Tibet’s Buddhist values; the border would not be safe anymore.

The Brahmaputra Diversion and the Tsinghai Clique

Some fifteen years ago, a Chinese engineer Li Ling and a retired PLA General Gao Kai, seriously worked on a scheme for the diversion of the Yarlung Tsangpo/Brahmaputra. Li Ling published a book called Tibet's Waters will Save China in which he detailed the diversion project, also known as Shuomatan Canal (from Suma Tan in Central Tibet to Tanjing in China). At that time, 'experts' denounced the plans of Li Ling and Gao Kai. Beijing also decided to cool down India’s legitimate worries.In 2006, the Chinese Water Resources Minister Wang Shucheng, a hydraulic engineer, affirmed that the proposal was "unnecessary, unfeasible and unscientific. There is no need for such dramatic and unscientific projects."

China develops the Indian border

Che Dalha (alias Qizhala), the head of the Tibetan Autonomous Region’s (TAR) Government (and TAR’s Senior Deputy Secretary) visited Chayul area in the vicinity of Yume village adopted by Xi Jinjing. Che, who is also director of the district border defense committee, inspected a Hero Memorial Park in Chayul area. He told the villagers that the masses should deeply cherish the memory of the revolutionary martyrs. He laid a wreath for 447 Revolutionary Martyrs' War Memorial. Why and where these ‘martyrs’ died?

23 April 2018

India hauls US to WTO against import tariffs

Source Link

India is clear that it in no way deserves to be saddled with the 10% higher import duty on aluminium and 25% on steel - Akos Stiller With the US refusing to roll back the higher duties on steel and aluminium imports from India, the latter has dragged it to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and has sought discussions on adequate compensation for the losses. “The decision to approach the WTO was taken after India’s attempts to sort out the matter bilaterally with the US did not yield results,” a government official told BusinessLine. New Delhi, however, hopes to sort out the issue with Washington at the consultations without having to request for a dispute settlement panel to fight out the matter. “India is clear it in no way deserves to be saddled with the 10 per cent higher import duty on aluminium and 25 per cent duty on steel as it neither poses a security threat to the US nor has it remained unresponsive to the bilateral trade imbalance. If the higher duties on the two items are not rolled back, India has to be compensated as per WTO rules,” the official said.

22 April 2018

Demographic dividend, growth and jobs

Ejaz Ghani
The benefit of a demographic dividend depends on whether the bulge in working population can be trained, and enough jobs created India has one of the youngest populations in an aging world. By 2020, the median age in India will be just 28, compared to 37 in China and the US, 45 in Western Europe, and 49 in Japan. Demographics can change the pace and pattern of economic growth. While China’s spectacular growth has already benefited from a demographic dividend, India is yet to do so.

Demographic dividend

The Not-So-Missing Case of Indian Innovation and Entrepreneurship

By Hitendra Singh

Recently, an article published in Modern Diplomacy caught our attention. The author has cited Mr. Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, and found his famous statement on Indians lacking enterprise and innovation to be ‘music to his ears’. He has then gone on to paint Indians in broad strokes – ironic, for it is something he has accused Indians of doing – and labelled them as a nation lacking entrepreneurial and innovative spirit. While his reasoning certainly has an element of truth and an instant appeal, our response looks to add nuances to his argument and provide a more realistic and complete picture of enterprise and innovation in India.

19 April 2018

China’s stealth wars in the Himalayas

Brahma Chellaney

Beijing’s military advance into Bhutan-claimed territory leaves New Delhi floundering, raising concern over India’s own borders. Operating in the threshold between peace and war, China has pushed its borders far out into international waters in the South China Sea in a way no other power has done elsewhere. Less known is that China is using a similar strategy in the Himalayas to alter facts on the ground — meter by meter — without firing a single shot.

The violently peaceful struggle for Tibet

Dr. Andrea Galli

Many years later, as he faced how the Dalai Lama became a political inconvenience for an increasing number of world leaders, the former emissary of the Dalai Lama, Gelek Rinpoche was to remember those distant afternoons when the poet Allen Ginsberg, the composer Philip Glass, the author Robert Thurman and the actor Richard Gere jointly planned fully-booked glamorous events for his Buddhist Jewel Heart organizations based in Ann Arbor, Chicago, and New York. At that time, the end of the Cold War was so recent that many notions lacked names, and in order to describe them, it was necessary to invent.

India’s grand illusion of a ‘reset’ with China

The power corridors in New Delhi are abuzz with the prospects of a “reset” of India-China ties. It started with a missive from foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale on 22 February discouraging government functionaries from attending events organized by the Tibetan government in exile. A number of high-level visits have since taken place. Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi came to India in early March and Indian national security adviser Ajit Doval visited China last week. And there have been reports suggesting that India did not intervene in the Maldives despite grave provocation from the Abdulla Yameen government in deference to Chinese sensitivities.

18 April 2018

Is India Inc missing trillion dollar opportunity of climate change?

In the year 2010, barely two years after Apple produced the first smartphone, China doubled the price of 17 rare earth metals. These difficult to mine materials are considered critical to modern day electronics. Be it mobile phones, solar batteries, semiconductors, electromagnets, aerospace or defence industry, these rare earths are the backbone of the technology hardware world. Incidentally, 95 per cent of the world’s rare earth is controlled by China. It did not happen by chance, but by design. The post Mao Chinese economic revival was shaped by party strongman Deng Xiao Ping after 1978. It ensured an annual GDP growth of 9.5 per cent for more than two decades, peaking to over 15 per cent in 1984.
How China established lead in green technology

Level playing field missing in India, says L&T Shipbuilding MD & CEO

T E Narasimhan

L&T Shipbuilding, part of the engineering conglomerate Larsen & Toubro (L&T), has said its facility, as also those of other private shipyards, is running at a low capacity in the absence of a level playing field. The company has invested around Rs 40 billion so far to set up a facility at Katuppali, near Chennai, which is capable of manufacturing 10 ships but it making only two at present. “...not only us, the private sector utilisation (capacity) is only 20-25 per cent, since we are over-feeding the public sector,” B Kannan, managing director and chief executive, L&T Shipbuilding Ltd told Business Standard. 

Why are Walmart and Amazon desperate to buy Flipkart?

Itika Sharma Punit

The Indian e-commerce sector seems to have turned into a battleground for two American giants. Over the recent weeks, several news reports have suggested that retail major Walmart and e-commerce behemoth Amazon are in the fray to acquire a majority stake in Bengaluru-based Flipkart. Currently, Japan’s Softbank is the largest investor in the company. Last week, Reuters reported that Arkansas-based retail giant Walmart has completed its due diligence on Flipkart and has made a proposal to buy a 51% stake in it for between $10 billion (Rs66,527.5 crore) and $12 billion (Rs79,833 crore). The deal could close by the end of June, the news agency said. At the same time, Seattle-based e-commerce major Amazon, too, is trying to acquire a significant stake in the Indian e-retail major, FactorDaily has reported. The US firm has even offered a “breakup fee” of up to $2 billion. A breakup fee is a penalty set during the process of takeover agreements, to be paid if the target backs out of the deal. The fee underscores the seriousness of the negotiations.

17 April 2018

India is not a currency manipulator

Indian policymakers have to be sensitive, without actually overreacting, to the risk that Donald Trump may move from rattling the sabres to actually using them. 

The Indian government reported last week that the trade deficit with the rest of the world nearly doubled in the financial year ended 31 March. The US Treasury Department said a few hours later that it would be adding India to the list of countries that it considers as potential currency manipulators. All this comes against the backdrop of growing global trade tensions. It is important to recognize that India has been put on a watch list rather than being actually accused of manipulating its exchange rate to hurt US interests. However, the mere fact that India is on the watch list now could restrict the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in the foreign exchange operations it needs to pursue to protect financial stability, especially when global capital flows threaten to overwhelm domestic monetary policy.

16 April 2018

India’s opportunity and role in shaping the Fourth Industrial Revolution

The world is on the brink of a new, all-encompassing revolution moving at exponential speed. We are witnessing the emergence of innovative technological trends such as artificial intelligence, the internet of things, robotics, 3D printing, nanotechnology, and others with applications as diverse as the technologies themselves. The combination of these technological breakthroughs is the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Each revolution brings systemic implications and this one is no different. What is different is the extensiveness of its scope and the vitality of its impact on our existing interaction, distribution, production and consumption systems – and even on our identities.

Red Star over Nepal irks India

UN­DER Prime Min­is­ter Khadga Prasad Oli the un­der­cur­rents of In­dia-Nepal ties will re­main trou­bled de­spite his just con­cluded visit to In­dia. In the wake of his elec­toral suc­cess, Oli has been rather up­front pub­licly about his vexed feel­ings to­wards In­dia even when greater dis­cre­tion would have served him and fu­ture ties with In­dia bet­ter. His in­ter­view to a Hong Kong-based news­pa­per af­ter as­sum­ing of­fice con­tained themes that por­tended con­tin­u­ing ten­sions with In­dia, be it his de­ter­mi­na­tion to re­vive the $2.5 bil­lion (`16,200 crore) Budhi Gan­daki project (al­lot­ted to China) that the pre­ced­ing Nepali Congress gov­ern­ment had can­celled, in­creas­ing in­fra­struc­ture con­nec­tiv­ity with China in or­der to lessen Nepal’s reliance on In­dia and up­dat­ing re­la­tions with In­dia “in keep­ing with the times”, in­clud­ing a pos­si­ble “cor­rec­tion” of the long­stand­ing prac­tice of Gurkha re­cruit­ment to serve in the In­dian army, and so on.

Preserving banking and financial stability

Almost a decade after the global financial crisis, economists continue to debate what went wrong, and how the world can avoid another blowout. One concern right now is that years of excessively easy monetary policy have resulted in higher leverage. The corporate credit-to-gross domestic product ratio in both advanced and emerging market economies is at near-historic highs. From the financial stability perspective, what matters is not just the total amount of credit in an economy but also the quality of the firms that are getting funded. It is in this context that the work in an analytical chapter of the latest “Global Financial Stability Report” (GFSR) of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) could be useful. Some of the takeaways from the research can also be useful for India, which is struggling with a massive bad debt problem.

India and the Commonwealth: Redirecting the Relationship



The Commonwealth stands out as a time-tested forum where India can build, renew, and redefine links with the group’s other fifty-two member states in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Pacific, and the Caribbean. Despite its colonial roots, it is the oldest institution that provided India with a view of the world decades before it achieved independence. After independence, the Commonwealth has served India’s interests in varied ways: maintaining cordial relations with the former colonial power and other countries belonging to the Western bloc; showing solidarity with newly joined African countries, as well as small island countries, by expanding trade ties and economic assistance; and showcasing its diplomatic and organizational capabilities by hosting a Commonwealth Summit as well as the Commonwealth Games.

How a Remote Iranian Port Could Heighten China-India Tensions

By Iain Marlow and Ismail Dilawar

A remote Iranian port could be the next trigger for geopolitical tensions between rivals China and India. India has pledged more than $500 million to develop the strategically located port of Chabahar -- roughly 1,800 kilometers (1,110 miles) from the capital Tehran -- since it first expressed interest in 2003. Yet repeated delays have prompted Iran to turn to China in the hope of speeding up construction. On a March trip to Islamabad, Iran Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said he’d welcome Chinese and Pakistani investment in Chabahar, according to Dawn newspaper. He cited China’s development of Gwadar, a port down the coast that is a showcase of President Xi Jinping’s Belt-and-Road infrastructure initiative.

Drones: Guidelines, regulations, and policy gaps in India


Technology affects us in positive ways yet can also be disruptive; such is the case with Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA or more commonly known as drones). While drones are proving to be useful for military, commercial, civilian, and even humanitarian activities, their unregulated use carries serious consequences that need to be addressed. This paper examines drone operations in India and analyses the major policy gaps in the country’s evolving policy framework. It argues that ad-hoc measures taken by state and central agencies have been ineffective, whether in addressing issues of quality control, or response mechanisms in the event of an incident, questions of privacy and trespass, air traffic, terrorist threat management, and legal liability. The paper makes a case for India to play a more proactive role in shaping global norms around the use of drones, as the evolution of these technologies could create an impact on the country’s security in multiple ways.