(Current Affairs) India and The World | October: 2016

India & The World

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi heads to Southeast Asia and China (Free Available)
  • India summons Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit (Free Available)
  • India-Japan pledged for ties in areas of counter-terrorism, civil nuclear cooperation (Free Available)
  • PM says ASEAN is important to India (Free Available)
  • Nepal will seek to start a new chapter with India prioritising infrastructure development (Free Available)
  • Exchange of tariff concessions under the Asia Pacific Trade Agreement
  • India said Terrorism is the grossest violation of Human Rights (Free Available)
  • Baswan committee report on changes in the Civil services exam referred to Govt (Only for Online Coaching Members)
  • Fantasy epic Game of Thrones made history at Emmy (Only for Online Coaching Members)
  • Non Allignment movement summit ends in Venezuela (Only for Online Coaching Members)
  • India reminds Pakistan about its 2004 promise (Only for Online Coaching Members)
  • No. of Baloch activists staying in Europe could approach India to seek asylum (Only for Online Coaching Members)
  • Sushma Swaraj addresses United Nations General assembly (Only for Online Coaching Members)
  • China says its trying to decrease the tension between India and Pak (Only for Online Coaching Members)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi heads to Southeast Asia and China

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi heads to Southeast Asia and China to participate in a series of bilateral and multilateral meetings.
  • The eastern outreach is important in view of the July 12 declaration of the Permanent Court of Arbitration challenging China’s territorial and maritime claims in the South China Sea region, the heart of Southeast Asia.
  • The outreach will begin on September 2 with Mr. Modi leaving for Vietnam before proceeding to Hangzhou in China for the G-20 summit.
  • The trip to Vietnam will highlight growing strategic convergence between the two sides, which includes the possibility of India transferring BrahMos missiles to Vietnam.
  • Parallel to security and strategic partnership, India and Vietnam are cultural partners and the bilateral agenda will include archaeological support to Vietnam to safeguard the Cham temples of the country.
  • Vietnam is a significant partner of India as it is the country-coordinator of India in ASEAN. The Prime Ministerial delegation will then move to Hangzhou in China which is the venue of the 2016 G 20 summit.
  • The delegation for G 20 will include Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar and the Indian sherpa for G20, NITI Aayog Vice-Chairman Arvind Panagariya.
  • The Obama-Modi dialogue will be the first since both sides signed the landmark Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement.
  • Mr. Modi will return to the region on September 7 to attend the 14th India-ASEAN summit and the 11th East Asian Summit which will be held in Vientiane, Lao PDR.

India summons Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit

  • Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit was summoned to the Ministry of External Affairs and told that Islamabad should let Indian diplomats posted in Pakistan work “without hindrance.”
  • Meeting Mr. Basit, Sujata Mehta, Secretary (West) took up the issue of “discourtesy” to Indian envoy Gautam Bambawale in Karachi.
  • The incident of discourtesy involved the Karachi Chamber of Commerce where a speech on India-Pakistan trade ties by Mr. Bambawale was cancelled barely an hour before the event was to take place on Tuesday.
  • A senior diplomatic source based in the High Commission of Pakistan in Delhi, said that Mr. Bambawale’s visit to Karachi was a privilege granted to him which turned controversial after his comments during the event.

India-Japan pledged for ties in areas of counter-terrorism, civil nuclear cooperation

  • India and Japan pledged to strengthen ties in the key areas of counter-terrorism, civil nuclear cooperation, trade and investment as Prime Minister Narendra Modi held talks with his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe.
  • Mr. Modi, conveyed his condolences to Abe for the Japanese lives lost in the recent terror attack in Bangladesh when 22 people were killed after Islamist militants stormed a cafe popular with foreigners.
  • Mr. Abe said Japan was not going to succumb to terrorism and expressed the desire to further strengthen cooperation with India in the area of counter-terrorism.
  • The two leaders discussed further strengthening and diversification of trade and investment ties.
  • Prime Minister Modi noted that Japan had technology and innovation while India had the power of youth and a huge market.
  • The India-Japan partnership could, therefore, produce global products and be a win-win partnership for both, Mr. Modi said.
  • The two leaders discussed the upcoming Japanese industrial parks in India and the cooperation in the area of ship breaking.
  • They also reviewed the progress in the India-Japan Civil Nuclear Cooperation Agreement negotiations and the high-speed rail project, Mr. Swarup said.
  • Premier Abe recalled that 2017 will mark the 60th anniversary of the Japan-India cultural agreement. He hoped to see more Indian tourists visiting Japan.

PM says ASEAN is important to India

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi told the ASEAN-India Summit that the regional grouping was central to India’s Act East policy.
  • He expressed hope that ASEAN would continue to lead and remain central to efforts aimed at greater regional integration and cooperation.
  • He said that in the face of growing traditional and non-traditional challenges, political cooperation has emerged as key in relations.
  • Speaking at the parallel East Asia Summit, the Prime Minister welcomed the adoption of a statement on non-proliferation and said India remained committed to strengthening its objectives.
  • He said India was committed to supporting the realisation of Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

Nepal will seek to start a new chapter with India prioritising infrastructure development

  • Nepal will seek to start a new chapter with India prioritising infrastructure development in a bid to overcome the impact of the 2015 earthquake and months-long economic blockade.
  • Talks on the Pancheshwar dam hydroelectricity power project were on track. He is likely to firm up the schedule and agreements before Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ arrives in New Delhi on September 15 for a four-day visit.
  • Apart from the dam, the Hulaki road project, construction of cross border railways and building new skill development centres in Nepal are also likely to feature in the discussions between Mr. Mahat and his counterpart Sushma Swaraj.
  • Following the new constitution, Nepal’s Madhesi population started an agitation which turned into a blockade on India-Nepal border. Prime Minister Oli had blamed India for the blockade, triggering a diplomatic spat.

Exchange of tariff concessions under the Asia Pacific Trade Agreement

  • The Union Cabinet approved a move for exchange of tariff concessions under the Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA), towards expanding trade ties with five nations in the region, including China.
  • Since this is a preferential trade agreement, the basket of items as well as extent of tariff concessions are enlarged during the trade negotiating rounds from time to time. Till date, three rounds of trade negotiations had taken place.
  • India is likely to benefit from offers of China and South Korea for duty concessions in sectors including textiles, chemicals and iron and steel, according to government sources.
  • Indian industry had not gained much from APTA so far, especially in textiles.
  • India in return has offered duty concessions on rail rolling stock, nuclear reactors and fissile material to boost the ‘Make In India’ initiative.

India said Terrorism is the grossest violation of Human Rights

  • Terrorism is the “grossest” violation of human rights, said India, lashing out at the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights ZeidRa’ad Al Hussein for his criticism of action by Indian forces in Jammu and Kashmir.
  • In his opening statement at the Human Rights Council in Geneva’s annual session,. Zeid Al Hussein called for an “independent, impartial and international mission” into reports of use of excessive force against the civilian population.
  • He also said that while Pakistan had responded to the HRC’s request to send the team, agreeing to its visit to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir “in tandem” with a mission to Jammu and Kashmir, India had yet to respond formally.
  • The Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir is part of a pluralistic and secular democracy, where freedoms are guaranteed by an independent judiciary, an active media and a vibrant civil society.
  • In contrast, Pakistan-occupied Kashmir is administered by a ‘deep state’ and has become a hub for the global export of terror,” MEA spokesperson said.
  • UN body in Geneva and India to spill over into the UN General Assembly in New York later this month, where External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj hopes to make a tough intervention on terrorism on September 26.
  • Meanwhile, welcoming the statement by the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Pakistan’s ministry of foreign affairs (MOFA) also “urged” India to make a formal response to the UN body.
  • Pakistan has escalated the diplomatic war over Kashmir since the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander BurhanWani sparked a series of protests and violence in the valley, that has left more than 76 dead and hundreds injured.
  • However, India said the demand for an “external mission” had been dismissed by the all-party conference that sent a delegation to Jammu and Kashmir.

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