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[Mission 2023] Insights SECURE SYNOPSIS: 22 April 2023

 

NOTE: Please remember that following ‘answers’ are NOT ‘model answers’. They are NOT synopsis too if we go by definition of the term. What we are providing is content that both meets demand of the question and at the same

Answer the following questions in 150 words:


General Studies – 1


 

1. To fully realize the potential of India’s demographic dividend, the government must address the significant gaps in education and skills training. Analyse.

Reference: Live MintInsights on India

Introduction

Demographic dividend, as defined by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) means, “the economic growth potential that can result from shifts in a population’s age structure, mainly when the share of the working-age population (15 to 64) is larger than the non-working-age share of the population (14 and younger, and 65 and older).” India has one of the youngest populations in an aging world. By 2020, the median age in India was 28 years. Demographics can change the pace and pattern of economic growth.

The UN report, World Population Prospects 2022, forecasts that the world’s population will touch eight billion this year and rise to 9.8 billion in 2050. What is of immediate interest to India is that its population will surpass China’s by 2023 and continue to surge.

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India has long been touted as the next big economic growth story after China. India has one of the youngest populations in an aging world. By 2020, the median age in India will be just 28 years. One of the primary reasons for that has been its young population which constitutes 59% of all Indians. Since 2018, India’s working-age population (people between 15 and 64 years of age) has grown larger than the dependent population. This bulge in the working-age population is going to last till 2055, or 37 years from its beginning. The hope has remained that as the young Indian population enters the working age, it will lead to higher economic growth.

Challenges in India to reap the demographic dividend:

  • Health:
    • Healthcare provisions in India is grossly inadequate and access to healthcare is highly inequitable. Lack of efficient public healthcare and burden of out-of-pocket health expenditures reduces people’s capacity or disables them from investing in the human capital of their children.
    • ineffective functioning (corruption and leakages) of the public distribution system (PDS), growing economic inequalities and lack of nutritional awareness pose challenges in combating malnutrition
  • Education:
    • Basic literacy (the ability to read and write) in the overall population has progressed modestly. However, there is persistent gender differentials, and major differentials by caste and religion.
    • The state of functional literacy and professional skills is poor. Indian graduates have low employability and does not meet changing economic structure or support global competitiveness.
  • Rising Inequality:
    • In India, a large portion of the population is below the poverty line, therefore, they do not have easy access to primary health and education.
    • There is growing inequality across social groups and income groups which translates itself into poor socio-economic mobility.
    • Lack of socioeconomic mobility hinders human capital development and traps a large section of population to be in the vicious circle of poverty.
  • Lack of Skilling:
    • According to the National Sample Survey, out of the 470 million people of working age in India, only 10% receive any kind of training or access to skilled employment opportunities.
    • There’s a huge mismatch between demand and supply when it comes to skilled workforce and employment opportunities, which could place a strain on the economy in the long run
  • Inadequate use of knowledge bases from technology developments:
    • There is a disconnect between India’s rate of technological growth and ability to distribute the gains from it by adequately focusing on skilling and health.
    • The use of technical advancements has been concentrated in few sectors and benefits accrued by a few elitist sections of the society.
  • Jobless growth:
    • India’s high growth rate phase (2004-05 to 2010-11) has created significantly fewer jobs as compared to previous decades of economic growth.
    • Around 47 % of India’s population is still dependent on agriculture which is notorious for underemployment and disguised unemployment.
    • Majority of the workforce is employed by the unorganized sector where workers are underpaid and lack any kind of social security.
  • Falling female labour force participation:
    • According to data from International Labour Organization and World Bank, India’s female labour force participationrates have fallen from 34.8 % in 1990 to 27 % in 2013.
    • Socio-cultural factors and rising family incomes have been identified as the main reasons for this decline.
    • Another appalling concern is that a significant proportion of qualified women drop out of the workforce for reasons ranging from no suitable jobs in the locality—particularly in rural areas—to family responsibilities and marriage.

A differential planning approach is needed:

  • To engineer an inclusive and sustainable growth for India, the social infrastructure like education, health and social protection are being given utmost priority by the Government
  • The gaps in the expenditure on social infrastructure like health and education should be closed by strengthening the delivery mechanisms of the government initiatives. Protecting and investing in people’s health, education, and skilling is vital for reducing income inequality, and sustained inclusive economic growth.

 

  • India needs to increase its spending on health and education. As recommended by the National Health Policy 2017 and the NEP 2020, India needs to increase its spending on health and education to at least 2.5 % in 6 % of GDP respectively from its current levels. Enhancing policies to maintain and even increase health and longevity will therefore be necessary.
  • The current situation calls for more and better schools, especially in rural areas. It also calls for better transportation links between rural areas and regional urban hubs.
  • India has to invest more in human capital formation at all levels, from primary education to higher education, cutting-edge research and development as well as on vocational training to increase the skill sets of its growing working-age population.
  • The flagship schemes such as Skill IndiaMake in India, and Digital India have to be implemented to achieve convergence between skill training and employment generation.
  • Bridging the gender gaps in education, skill development, employment, earnings and reducing social inequalities prevalent in the society have been the underlying goals of the development strategy to enhance human capabilities.
  • Improved infrastructure, skill development, access to easy finance, reducing barriers to entrepreneurship and forums for mentorship of emerging entrepreneurs in partnership with corporates are some of measures.
  • Decentralized models of development: Social policies for each state must be differentiated to accommodate different rates of population growth. The populations in south and west India are growing at a much slower pace than in the central and eastern states.

Conclusion:

multi-pronged approach is imperative to reap the demographic dividend. There is also a need to engage with the youth and create an enabling environment for entrepreneurship. The demographic dividend offers them a unique opportunity to boost living standards, but they must act now to manage their older populations in the near future by implementing policies that ensure a safe and efficient transition from the first demographic dividend to the second demographic dividend.

 

2. What are the causes for the Great Pacific Garbage Patch? Evaluate its impact on human health and the economy.

Reference: The HinduInsights on India

Introduction

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP) also described as the Pacific trash vortex, is a gyre of marine debris particles in the north central Pacific Ocean. It is located about halfway between Hawaii and California. It’s the largest accumulation zone for ocean plastics on Earth.

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a vast area in the North Pacific Ocean where ocean currents have concentrated large amounts of plastic debris. The patch is estimated to cover an area of up to 1.6 million square kilometers (about three times the size of France), and it contains an estimated 80,000 metric tons of plastic debris.

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Great Pacific Garbage Patch:

  • Twice the size of Texas, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch stretches for hundreds of miles across the North Pacific Ocean and is one of the most frightening examples of just how much human activity is violating the planet.
  • Marine debris and pollution consisting mostly of plastic trash is accumulating in oceans around the world.
  • The patch is characterized by exceptionally high relative pelagic concentrations of plastic, chemical sludge, and other debris that have been trapped by the currents of the North Pacific Gyre.
  • Microplastics make up 94 percentof an estimated 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic in the patch. But that only amounts to eight percent of the total tonnage.
  • As it turns out, of the 79,000 metric tons of plastic in the patch, most of it is abandoned fishing gear—not plastic bottles or packaging drawing headlines today.

The causal factors of GPGP are:

  • The cause of GPGP is entirely due to human beings.
  • Merchant ships expel cargo, sewage, used medical equipment, and other types of waste that contain plastic into the ocean.
  • The largest ocean-based source of plastic pollution is discarded fishing gear (including traps and nets).
  • Continental plastic litter such as Food Wrappers & Containers, Bottles and container caps, Plastic bags, Straws and stirrers etc. enters the ocean largely through storm-water runoff.
  • Micro plastics (particles of less than 5 mm) such as those used in scrubbers and cosmetics
  • Unlike POPs (Persistent Organic Pollutants) or chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), Plastic pollution has received little attention in terms of international agreements.

Impact on Economy

  • Marine pollution also affects other economic activities such as shipping, fishing, aquaculture and recreation.
  • For example, each year the fishing industry bears significant costs of repairing boats and equipment damaged by discarded fishing gear.
  • In 2017, the United Nations estimated that waste pollution accounted for worldwide economic losses of $622 million per year from tourism and $51 million per year from fishing fleets.
  • The total negative impact on marine industries is estimated to be at least $8 billion per year.

Impact on marine and human life:

  • Affects movement of marine organisms:
    • Ghostnets, a term coined to describe purposely discarded or accidentally lost netting, drift through the ocean, entangling whales, seals, and turtles.
    • An estimated 100,000 marine animals are strangled, suffocated, or injured by plastics every year.
  • Direct harm to species:
    • Of the 1.5 million Laysan albatrosses that inhabit Midway, nearly all are likely to have plastic in their digestive system.
    • Approximately one-third of their chicks die, and many of those deaths are due to being fed plastic by their parents.
    • Fish and whales may also mistake the plastic as a food source.
  • Indirect harm to species via the food chain:
    • Besides the particles danger to wildlife, on the microscopic level the floating debris can absorb organic pollutants from seawater, including PCBs, DDT, and PAHs.
    • These toxin-containing plastic pieces are also eaten by jellyfish, which are then eaten by fish. Many of these fish are then consumed by humans, resulting in their ingestion of toxic chemicals
  • Spreading invasive species:
    • Marine plastics also facilitate the spread of invasive species that attach to floating plastic in one region and drift long distances to colonize other ecosystems. Research has shown that this plastic marine debris affects at least 267 species worldwide.
  • Affects Food-chain:
    • Because the garbage blocks sunlight, algae is not growing as it should. With less algae, the entire food chain is experiencing a negative disruption.
    • In addition, the plastics floating in the ocean are leeching harmful chemicals into the water, which are likely entering the food chain.

Measures to tackle plastic pollution:

  • Local actionsare required for mitigating plastic pollution, using mechanisms such as bans on plastic bags, maximum daily limits for emissions into watersheds, and incentives for fishing gear retrieval.
  • Countries should come together to establish measurable reduction targets for plastic waste. A meaningful international agreement—one with clearly defined waste reduction targets is the need of the hour.
  • Effective policies must take into account all stages of the lifecycle of plastic—connecting producers to users and ultimately to waste managers.
  • Nonprofits like 5 Gyresare now pushing an agenda toward public awareness, corporate responsibility and the idea of a circular economy — an economy that focuses on keeping waste to a minimum while maximizing materials’ use.
  • Fossil fuel subsidies incentivise the plastic market. Hence, Countries should end fossil fuel subsidies. Annually, 4–8% of oil is used to produce raw plastic.
  • India has a major problem dealing with plastics, particularly single-use shopping bags that reach dumping sites, rivers and wetlands along with other waste.
  • The most efficient way to deal with the pollution is to control the production and distribution of plastics.
  • Banning single-use bags and making consumers pay a significant amount for the more durable ones is a feasible solution.
  • Enforcing segregation of waste will retrieve materials and greatly reduce the burden on the environment.
  • Waste separation can be achieved in partnership with the community, and presents a major employment opportunity.
  • Eco-friendly substitutes (cloth/paper/jute bags, leaves/areca leaf plates, paper straws) should be developed. For this, scientific and financial support (soft loans and subsidies) is required.

Conclusion:

Marine plastic pollution is a “planetary crisis,” and we should hope for a “Paris-style” global treaty aimed at tackling it. We cannot transform our world into a ‘plastic planet’. What is needed is collective public effort to stop plastic pollution and safeguard our ecosystem/biodiversity.

 


General Studies – 2


 

3. The pollution problem in the Ganga River remains unabated despite the government’s efforts to clean it up. Critically analyze various government polices to clean the Ganga River.

Reference: Down to EarthInsights on IndiaInsights on India

 

Introduction

Ganga is an integral part of the socio-eco-cultural-political fabric of India. However, the longest river has faced the brunt of increasing industrialization, which has not only affected the flow but also the quality of its water.

According to the Ministry of Jal Shakti, though the Namami Gange Programme has been able to reduce the overall pollution load in the Ganga River, the river still remains polluted.

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Pollution in the Ganga River:

  • At least 71% of the river’s monitoring stationsreported alarming levels of faecal coliform in January 2023.
  • Faecal coliforms are a group of bacteria found in the gut and faeces of warm-blooded animals, which enters rivers through the discharge of untreated sewage.
  • While Uttarakhand had permissible levels of faecal coliform [less than 2,500 most probable number (MPN) per 100 ml], numbers in three other states – UP, Bihar and West Bengal– are alarming.

Government initiatives to clean Ganga

Namami Gange Programme is an umbrella programme which integrates previous and currently ongoing initiatives by enhancing efficiency, extracting synergies and supplementing them with more comprehensive & better coordinated interventions. National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) endeavours to deploy best available knowledge and resources across the world for Ganga rejuvenation. Clean Ganga has been a perennial attraction for many international countries that have expertise in river rejuvenation.

Achievements of Namami Gange:

  • Namami Gange has a well-balanced spread of 221 projects, which include STP, ghat development, surface cleaning afforestation, sanitation, and public awareness, out of which 58 have been completed.
  • There is a concerted focus on 10 towns that contribute to 64% of the total sewage discharged in Ganga.
  • To address the cross-functional challenge faced by GAP, Namami Gange has synergized itself with government schemes by signing MoUs with 10 central ministries.
  • More than 90 per cent villages across river Ganga have been declared open defecation free, and by October 2017, the rest of the villages would become ODF as well.
  • The programme has also successfully renovated over 180 ghats and built 112 new crematoriums.
  • 4,464 villages situated on the bank of Ganga have been declared as open defecation free (ODF). Moreover, Namami Gange was instrumental in constructing more than 12.7 lakhs household toilets.
  • Trash skimmers have been deployed in 11 cities to collect any surface waste.
  • Six public outreach programmes were organised in areas around Ganga basin:
  • Swachhata Pakhwada
  • Ganga Sankalp Divas
  • Ganga Nirikshan Yatra
  • Ganga Dusshera
  • Ganga Vriksharopan Saptah
  • Swachhta Hi Seva Pakhwada

Challenges:

  • Untreated waste continues to be discharged in 60% of Ganga.
  • While the five major states through which the river flows generated 10,139.3 million litres per day (MLD) of sewage, they had a combined sewage treatment capacity of only 40%.
  • Uttarakhand is the only state with sufficient treatment capacity.
  • According to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB)’s estimates, approximately 8,250 million litres per day (MLD) of wastewater is generated from towns in the Ganga basin, while treatment facilities exist only for 3,500 MLD and roughly 2,550 MLD of this wastewater is discharged directly into the Ganga.
  • The industrial pollutants largely originate from tanneries in Kanpur, paper mills, distilleries and sugar mills in the Yamuna, Ramganga, Hindon and Kali river catchments.
  • there is the huge load of municipal sewage which contributes two-thirds of total pollution load
  • The National Green Tribunal (NGT) in November 2019 had imposed a penalty of Rs 10 crore on the Uttar Pradesh (UP) government for failing to check sewage discharge containing toxic chromium into the Ganga at Rania and Rakhi Mandi in Kanpur.
  • The cost of the damage was assessed by the state pollution control board (UPPCB) as compensation for restoration of environment and the public health in the area.
  • Plastic has also caused significant damage to this stretch. “Kolkata produces 2,114 tonnes of solid waste per day of which 10 per cent is plastic
  • There have been issues regarding untreated waste that flows into the river, restoring the flow of the river, sludge management in Ganga basin towns, cost overruns in execution of projects and governance glitches
  • CAG in its report claimed that the NMCG neither circulated Ganga Rejuvenation Basin Management Programme (GRBMP) to different ministries/departments for consultation and seeking their opinion, nor finalised the Ganga Rejuvenation Basin Management Programme (GRBMP) for initiating the long-term intervention on the Ganga.

Way forward:

  • Promote only decentralized sewage treatment plants (dSTP) at the colony level. Reuse treated wastewater for irrigation and empty into natural drains.
  • For all upcoming cities, smart cities and for those, whose master plans are not in place, earmark land for dSTPs. dSTPs below 10 MLD should be encouraged and incentivised under urban development schemes and real estate development.
  • The existing and planned STPs need to be verified on efficiency, reliability and technology parameters by independent agencies (tech-efficiency-reliability verification).
  • This will allow assessing if the technology provides value for money and is sustainable. Many STPs are not performing up to desired standards due to choice of unrealistic assumptions and erroneous technology choice.
  • A survey conducted by CPCB in 2016 found that most STPs in Kanpur fail to comply with environmental regulations.
  • Develop and restore local storages (ponds, lakes, wetlands) as permanent solutions to both floods and droughts.
  • Only 10 per cent of water received during monsoon rainfall is harvested. Restoration of ponds, lakes and wetlands should be an integral part of river restoration and conservation strategy.
  • Bring back glory to all natural drains that empty into rivers, and transform and rejuvenate them into healthy water bodies — they have been converted to sewage carrying drains by our municipalities and planning bodies.
  • Start restoring lower order streams and smaller tributaries in the Ganga Basin. Every river is important. The focus of Ganga Action Plan (Phase I and II) and Namami Gange has been on the main stem of the river.
  • The tributaries that feed the river were overlooked. The Ganga has eight major tributaries (Yamuna, Son, Ramganga, Gomti, Ghaghra, Gandak, Kosi and Damodar).
  • The majority of the funds were spent on pollution-abatement measures on the main stem of the Ganga and on the upper Yamuna basin, which constitute just 20 per cent of the Ganga basin.
  • Further, these eight major tributaries are joined by smaller rivers, whose restoration is equally important.
  • Identify, define and protect ‘river-corridors’ as areas for no cement-concrete structures — know that rivers have been formed after thousands of years of nature’s work.
  • Infrastructure development and destruction of river ecosystem through populist measures such as riverfront developments in the name of area and township development projects or urban / smart city development must be stopped to protect and conserve surface water sources.
  • Map the entire looped length of each and every tributary of the Ganga and correct the land records.
  • Many of the rivers have been underestimated which causes encroachment and jurisdiction conflicts.
  • The existing methodology to measure river length is flawed and complete mapping of looped lengths is required for proper assessment of water resources and correct revenue maps.
  • This will ensure that active flood plains and river-corridors are free from encroachments.
  • Restore base flows through groundwater recharge. Groundwater contributes significantly to river-flows through base flows (average base flow in the order of 40- 55 per cent) especially during lean seasons in the entire Ganga Basin.
  • The idea of Ganga rejuvenation is also linked to groundwater rejuvenation. There is a need to have robust planning and regulation of withdrawal and recharge of groundwater across all orders of the river streams to make rivers perennial.
  • Define the desired ecological flow regime(s) in the Ganga main stem and its tributaries (not just a static figure) to allow the rejuvenation of the river.
  • Evolve new and innovative ways to generate sufficient revenues for operation and maintenance (O&M) of water and wastewater infrastructure through pricing and valuing water.

Conclusion

Ganga is an integral part of the socio-eco-cultural-political fabric of India. However, the longest river has faced the brunt of increasing industrialization, which has not only affected the flow but also the quality of its water. Namami Gange Programme aims to restore the purity and flow of water in the Ganga River through abatement of pollutants and treatment of discharged water. Namami Gange has not only taken lessons from the failure of GAP, but, it has also ensured cross-state cooperation as well as public support to expedite the processes.

 


General Studies – 3


 

4. Discuss the importance of exports for a nation’s economic growth and development. What are the impediments to India’s exports and how can they be overcome?

Reference: Indian ExpressInsights on India

Introduction

Exports are the goods and services one country sells to other countries. A country’s flow of exports can impact its economy and the entire global economy.

According to the Ministry of Commerce, India’s goods exports dipped 6.6% from a year earlier to $32.91 billion in January, according to government data released on Wednesday. This is the third decline in four months. Imports also fell last month by 3.6% year-on-year to $50.66 billion.

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Importance of Exports for a nation

  • Exports facilitate international trade and stimulate domestic economic activity by creating employment, production, and revenues.
  • By selling their goods or services to different countries, domestic businesses can acquire new markets and increase their profits.
  • Selling to various markets can also diversify their business’s investments and spread out economic risk. This means that they aren’t overly dependent on one sector, and if one of their investments loses value, their other investments can make up for it.
  • Expanding their operations by entering international markets, business owners can reduce the per-unit cost of their products. This is because manufacturing products in bulk can lessen production costs.
  • Businesses can also benefit from exporting by gaining new knowledge and experience from foreign countries.
  • Selling their products and services to new communities with diverse cultures can inspire a business owner to invent innovative technologies and marketing strategies.
  • If a country’s businesses are expanding their operations to export their goods and services, it can stimulate economic activity and create more jobs.
  • Exports can also raise the standard of living in a country. A country’s standard of living is the amount of wealth, material comfort and services available to individuals and communities in the country.
  • When businesses export goods and services, their customers from other countries pay in a foreign currency.
  • Exporters deposit this foreign currency into their local bank to exchange it for local currency to pay their workers, buy supplies and conduct other spending.
  • Exports are a very important tool to spur economic growth in a country. This means that exports can also be used to recover from recessions.
  • exports have become even more important because they appear to be directly linked to economic growth.

Impediments for exports in India

  • Engineering goods(the backbone of India’s merchandise exports previously), fell by 21%. The Engineering Export Promotion Council of India attributed the slowdown to –
    • High inflation in developed regions,
    • Falling demand in China,
    • The slowdown in the EU and the U.S. and
    • The Russia-Ukraine war.
  • In October, a decline of $2 billionworth of exports was seen in steel and allied products.
    • Due to the export duty leviedon these products to help increase local availability.
    • The government has since removed this duty.
    • The Diwali festive seasonprompted workers to take leave, thus impacting output.
  • Inflation: Inflation has been driven up more by local factors, including higher food prices, than imported reasonsand that those pressures are set to dampen thanks to easing international commodity prices and the arrival of Kharif crop.
    • Retail inflation has been consistently above 7% these past few months, but stood at 6.8% for October, 2022.
  • Fall in Oil and other Export:
  • Oil export growth fell to -11.4% y-o-y from 43.0% in September 2022, partly reflectinglower global crude oil prices, while non-oil exports plunged -16.9% y-o-y, with the decline broad-based across iron ore, handicrafts, textiles, some agricultural goods, plastics, gems & jewellery, engineering goods, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and leather goods.
  • Rising Global Trade Tension:
    • Recent trade war between the US and China and other global trade wars has impacted growth all over the world.
    • It has impacted manufacturing and exports in different parts of the world, including the Indianeconomy too.
  • Weaker Global Demand:
    • The global economic growth is decelerating sharply in the wake of persistently high inflation across developed countriesand, as a result, as sharp tightening of monetary policy .
    • With growth contraction across the board — UK and US are set to see recession while the euro area is likely to stall even as China struggles to grow — the demand for Indian goods has plummeted. That is why exports have contracted.

Way forward

  • The weakness in India’s exports is likely to sustain because global growth is likely to remain weak. Weaker exports, in turn, will have a dampening effect on the growth of India’s gross domestic product (GDP).
  • The government urgently needs to bring out a revised foreign policy to address both our historical trade imbalance, and the slowing of exports, rather than wait out the tumult as it intends to, having again deferred the new policy release till April next.
  • The government should take appropriate measures to improve the credit cycle through investment and savings and promotion of foreign investment will bring the economy from slowdown in future.

 

Conclusion

Going forward, the weakness in India’s exports is likely to sustain because global growth is likely to remain weak. Weaker exports, in turn, will have a dampening effect on the growth of India’s gross domestic product (GDP). A revised foreign trade policy can give much needed impetus and boost to exports so that manufacturers in India try for export trade.

 

5. What is a proxy war? Examine various threats to India from a proxy war and suggest strategies to promote peace and stability.

Reference: Insights on India

Introduction

proxy war is an armed conflict between two states or non-state actors, one or both of which act at the instigation or on behalf of other parties that are not directly involved in the hostilities. A proxy war occurs when a major power instigates or plays a major role in supporting and directing a party to a conflict but does only a small portion of the actual fighting itself.

Examples include Pakistan’s action in India’s J&K region, Russia’s actions in Ukraine, and the Iranian sponsoring of Hezbollah against Israel.

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Background

  • The prosecution of hybrid warfare through irregulars and non-state actors has gained currency over a period of time.
  • Pakistan, after enacting the role of a front line state and supporting the mujahideen to defeat then Soviet Army in Afghanistan in the 1980s at the behest of the United States, has gone on to master this art.
  • Having repeatedly failed to defeat India in conventional war, the Pakistan Army has pursued the low intensity warfare option, with non-state actors as its strategic asset. It has employed terrorists belonging to various groups to wage proxy war in order to achieve its prime political objective of internationalizing the Kashmir issue.
  • As a low cost option, this has also well served the interest of Pakistan’s military to keep the Indian Army engaged in combating terrorism.
  • To inflict casualties of the magnitude of the Uri strike through conventional meanswould imply launching a major operation with a high risk of own losses.
  • Thus the proxy war strategy suits the political bosses in Islamabadand the military brass in Rawalpindi. Given its internal turbulence, Pakistan is likely to continue to pursue this policy, may be even more proactively in future, unless India takes effective counter measures to thwart Islamabad’s grand design.

Impact of proxy wars

  • States use proxies for many reasons. For the United States, the issue is often cost: Locals fight, and die, so Americans do not have to.
  • In addition, because they are local, proxies are often (though not always)more accepted by the affected communities.
    • Therefore, they can better gain intelligence from those communities and are less likely to promote the sort of nationalistic backlash that so often accompany foreign interventions.
  • If the proxy is a guerrilla force, they often know the terrain better and can blend in with the population in a way that foreigners never can.
  • Most states lack the power-projection capacity of the United States and turn to proxies as a way to influence events far from their borders.
    • Iran lacks a navy or massive airlift capacity necessary to sustain large forces in Yemen
  • Despite the power asymmetry, proxies almost invariably act according to their own interests and impulses.
    • Right after 9/11, the United States asked the anti-Taliban Northern Alliance, its key Afghan ally made up primarily of minorities, not to take Kabul so that a force composed of ethnic Pashtun, Afghanistan’s dominant community, could do so and assuage the fears of minority dominance.

Tackling proxy wars

  • Stopping support to fringe elements in the society to carry out attacks. Civilian government and democratic ideals can help in ensuring this.
  • Strict regulation of movement of dual use technologies and weapons lest it falls in wrong hands. A global pact must be done.
  • Ensuring an egalitarian society, where the divides aren’t extreme that may lead to unrest and flourishing of nefarious activities.
  • Education of the youth and behavioural nudge to the youth of minority communities who are at risk of radicalisation.
  • To prevent the further spread of proxy warfare in the region, the institutional conflict of interest in the Security Council must come to an end. The U.N. should establish a standing body to investigate the source and use of conflict armaments to ensure compliance with the laws of armed conflict and the U.N. Charter.
  • The body could function in a similar manner as the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) — an intergovernmental organization that rates governments’ performance on efforts to reduce money laundering and terrorism financing.

Conclusion

Only through the collective and visible effort of the General Assembly will it be possible to change the calculus of arms-supplying nations supporting proxies in armed conflicts around the world.

 

Answer the following questions in 250 words(15 marks each):


General Studies – 1


 

6. Export hotspots play a crucial role in driving India’s export growth by acting as key centers of production and trade. Discuss the features of major export hotspots of India.

Reference: The Hindu

Introduction

Export hubs are collaborative business networks that help small to medium enterprises (SMEs) in the Growth Centre sectors harness opportunities in global marketplaces. Export hubs will boost the export capability of small to medium local and regional businesses, through supporting activities such as to developing collective brands, leveraging local infrastructure to scale business operations, and positioning regional businesses to participate in global supply chains.

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Major features

Export hubs will undertake activities such as:

  • help to address barriers to SME participation in global supply chains
  • deliver improved local business capability
  • increase information and resource sharing between SMEs
  • provide market intelligence about export opportunities
  • enhance workforce skills through training and seminars.
  • Export hubs will develop export strategies, based on local strengths, which will align with the national strategies and networks of the Growth Centres.

 

Advantages of Export hubs

  • Every District has products and services which are being exported, and can be further promoted, along with new products / services, to increase production, grow exports, generate economic activity and achieve the goal of AtmaNirbhar Bharat, Vocal for local and Make in India.
  • Helps to target export promotion, manufacturing and employment generation at grass root level.
  • Enhances manufacturing activities, promote goods and services exports, support MSMEs and local artisans/craftsmen, broaden coverage of e-commerce linkages with Districts, promote GI products, improve logistics & agricultural sectors and support employment opportunities in the Districts, leading to wide-ranging economic benefits, including investment, manufacturing & export growth.

 

Way forward

  • India should focus on diversifying its export basket by promoting and supporting the export of non-traditional items such as electronic goods, pharmaceuticals, and automobiles.
  • India needs to improve its export infrastructure, such as ports, roads, and railways, to reduce the cost of exports and improve efficiency.
  • The government should develop regional export hubs that specialize in certain export commodities. This would help in creating economies of scale, reducing costs, and promoting competitiveness.
  • Investment in research and development is critical to help Indian exporters produce high-quality goods at lower costs, making them more competitive in the global market.
  • The government should simplify export procedures and reduce red tape to make it easier for Indian exporters to do business with foreign partners.
  • Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) should be encouraged to participate in exports by providing them with easy access to credit, technology, and infrastructure.
  • Indian exporters should leverage digital technology to reach out to global customers and promote their products. The use of e-commerce platforms can help Indian exporters to reach a wider market at a lower cost.

 


General Studies – 2


 

7. The government must change its approach from criminalising suicide attempts to suicide prevention by emphasizing the need for mental health support and compassion for those struggling with suicidal thoughts. Elaborate.

Reference: Down to Earth

Introduction

India’s penal code criminalizes suicide attempts and punishes those who attempt suicide with imprisonment and fines. Section 309 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) that criminalises attempt to commit suicide. This approach is counterproductive and fails to address the underlying mental health issues that drive people to attempt suicide.

Recently, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India has announced the “National Suicide Prevention Strategy”. It is the first of its kind in the country, with time-bound action plans and multi-sectoral collaborations to achieve reduction in suicide mortality by 10% by 2030. The strategy is in line with the World Health Organization’s South East-Asia Region Strategy for suicide prevention.

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Statistics

  • India has the highest suicide rate in the Southeast Asian region.
  • According to the latest report of the National Crime Records Bureau 2019-21, 4.7 crore, including more than 17.56 lakh women, ended their life by taking recourse to various means to commit suicide in the 54 years for which records are available with the organisation.
  • Rate of suicides in India assumed alarming proportions from 1998 when 104,713 persons, including 43,027 women hung themselves to death.
  • The rate of increase in suicides started going up steeply from 1998. Since that year, the number of reported suicides went into six digits.
  • The numbers reached a peak in 2021 when 1,65,033 suicides were reported, as compared to 1,53,052 and 1,39,123 in 2020 and 2019, respectively.
  • Suicide is the fourth leading cause of death among 15-19 year-olds.
  • 77% of global suicides occur in low- and middle-income countries.
  • Ingestion of pesticide, hanging and firearms are among the most common methods of suicide globally.
  • Daily wage earners remained the largest profession-wise group among suicide victims in 2021, accounting for 42,004 suicides (25.6%) in India.
  • The suicide rate among Indian girls and women continues to be twice the global rate, though it has dropped in the last decade or so.

Negative impacts of criminalisation of suicide

A report of United for Global Mental Health, pointed that suicide has four negative impacts on the society

  • It leads to suppression of data,
  • Results in not treating suicide as a public health issue,
  • Results in compounding of stigma
  • Places people with mental health issues in places where such issues get aggravated.

Measures taken by Government of India

  • DecriminalisationSection 309 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC)states whoever attempts to commit suicide and does any act towards the commission of such offence, shall be punished with simple imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year or with fine or both.
    • Section 115 (1) of the Mental Healthcare Act 2017 of the Act provides, “Notwithstanding anything contained in section 309 of the IPC,any person who attempts to commit suicide shall be presumed, unless proved otherwise, to have severe stress and shall not be tried and punished under the said Code.
    • However, this law applies only to those suffering from mental illness. There is presumption of severe stress in case of an attempt to die by suicide.
  • Mental Healthcare Act, 2017:
    • MHA 2017aims to provide mental healthcare services for persons with mental illness.
  • Kiran:
    • The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has launched a 24/7 toll-free helpline “KIRAN”to provide support to people facing anxiety, stress, depression, suicidal thoughts and other mental health concerns.
  • Manodarpan Initiative:
    • Manodarpanis an initiative of the Ministry of Education under Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan. It is aimed to provide psychosocial support to students, family members and teachers for their mental health and well-being during the times of Covid-19.

Conclusion and way forward

  • Limiting access to the means of suicide, such as highly hazardous pesticides and firearms.
  • Educating the media on responsible reporting of suicide.
  • Fostering socio-emotional life skills in adolescents.
  • Early identification, assessment, management and follow-up of anyone affected by suicidal thoughts and behaviour.
  • These needed to go hand-in-hand with foundational pillars like situation analysis, multi-sectoral collaboration, awareness raising capacity building, financing, surveillance and monitoring and evaluation.

Value addition

National Suicide Prevention Strategy

  • The strategy broadly seeks to establish effective surveillance mechanismsfor suicide within the next three years.
  • It seeks to establishpsychiatric outpatient departments that will provide suicide prevention services through the District Mental Health Programme in all districts within the next five years.
  • It also aims tointegrate a mental well-being curriculum in all educational institutions within the next eight years.
  • It envisages developing guidelines for responsible media reportingof suicides, and restricting access to means of suicide.

 

8. The question of whether to conduct a caste-based census in India is a complex and contentious one. While there are valid arguments in favour of such a census, there are also concerns about the potential for further social division and the logistical challenges of collecting and analysing caste-based data. Critically examine.

Reference: Indian Express , Insights on India

Introduction

Despite the underlying good intentions, positive discrimination has been a controversial topic. Many oppose affirmative actions like reservation; they believe that such provisions only perpetuate caste differences and they call for a “casteless society”.

But, as Justice D.Y. Chandrachud pointed out, “caste-lessness” is a privilege that only the upper caste can afford because their caste privilege has already translated into social, political and economic capital.

On the other hand, individuals who belong to the lower castes must retain their caste identity in order to claim the benefits of measures such as reservation, which recognise historic harm.

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Background

  • SECC was conducted for the first time in 1931.
  • SECC is meant to canvass every Indian family, both in rural and urban India, and ask about their:
    • Economic status, so as to allow Central and State authorities to come up with a range of indicators of deprivation, permutations, and combinations of which could be used by each authority to define a poor or deprived person.
    • It is also meant to ask every person their specific caste name to allow the government to re-evaluate which caste groups were economically worst off and which were better off.
  • SECC has the potential to allow for a mapping of inequalities at a broader level.

Benefits of caste based census

  • Benefit in Policy Making: The purpose of a caste census is not merely geared to the reservation issue; a caste census would actually bring to the fore the large number of issues that any democratic country needs to attend to, particularly the number of people who are at the margins, or who are deprived, or the kind of occupations they pursue.
    • A caste census, which will generate exhaustive data will allow policymakers to develop better policies, implementation strategies,and will also enable a more rational debate on sensitive issues.
  • Reveal Privileged Section of Society: Caste is not only a source of disadvantage; it is also a very important source of privilege and advantage in our society.
    • There is a need to stop thinking of caste as being applicable to only disadvantaged people, poor people, people who are somehow lacking.
    • The opposite is even more true: caste has produced advantages for certain communities, and these also need to be recorded.
  • Caste has an Important Position in Indian Society: While census data has been captured for Scheduled CastesScheduled Tribes, religions and linguistic profiles, there has been no profiling of all castes in India since 1931.
    • Since then, caste has assumed an increasingly important position in our lives, and our reliance on inadequate data has also increased.
  • To Address Prevalent Inequalities: Unequal distribution of wealth, resources and education has meant an acute shortage of purchasing power among the majority of Indians. Hence, the caste census helps to address these issues in a democratic, scientific and objective manner.
  • Constitutional Mandate: Our Constitution too favours conducting a caste census. Article 340 mandates the appointment of a commission to investigate the conditions of socially and educationally backward classesand make recommendations as to the steps that should be taken by governments.
  • To Burst the Myths:There are a lot of myths which actually deprive a large number of people, particularly on the margins.
    • For instance, In Karnataka, there were claims that among the castes, the Lingayats are the most numerous.
    • But a lot of other studies have brought out that this may not be true, and these kinds of myths lead to the argument that given that this is a caste which is numerous, it has to be constantly placated. These myths can be debunked through a caste census.
  • Reduce Inclusion and Exclusion Errors:With accurate data of castes, most backward castes can be identified.
    • Some have benefited so much across the years, while there are people in this country who have not benefited at all.

Challenges in conducting the caste based census

  • Repercussions of a Caste Census:Caste has an emotive element and thus there exist the political and social repercussions of a caste census.
    • There have been concerns that counting caste may help solidify or harden identities.
    • Due to these repercussions, nearly a decade after the SECC, a sizable amount of its data remains unreleased or released only in parts.
  • Caste Is Context-specific:Caste has never been a proxy for class or deprivation in India; it constitutes a distinct kind of embedded discrimination that often transcends class. For example:
    • People with Dalit last names are less likely to be called for job interviews even when their qualifications are equal to an upper-caste candidate.
    • They are also less likely to be accepted as tenants by landlords. Thus, difficult to measure.
    • Marriage to a well- educated, well-off Dalit man still sparks violent reprisals among the families of upper-caste women every day across the country.
  • Lack of Trust & Clarity: The Supreme court has time and again asked governments to provide the data related to castes; however, this has not been possible due to the non-availability of such data.
    • As a result, our national life suffers from mutual mistrust and misconceptions among different castes.
    • All such commissions have had to rely on data from the last caste census (1931).
  • Other Issues:There are apprehensions that caste-based census would further promote:
    • Caste-based political mobilisation
    • Strong sentiments for or against reservations

 

Way forward

  • Utilizing Existing Data:As SECC has its own concerns, linking and syncing aggregated Census data to other large datasets such as the National Sample Surveys may help the governments realize the intended benefits of SECC.
    • National Sample Surveys cover issues that the Census exercises do not, such as maternal health, information of land and asset ownership, consumption expenditure, nature of employment, which would be significant for a more comprehensive analysis.
  • Digital Alternatives:Statisticians pointed out that Census operations across the world are going through significant changes, employing digital methods that are precise, faster, and cost-effective.
    • However, care must be taken to ensure that digital alternatives and linking of data sources involving Census operations are inclusive and non-discriminatory, especially given the sensitive nature of the data being collected.
  • Preliminary Census: Further, independent of census, a preliminary socio-anthropological study can be done at the State and district levels to establish all sects and sub-castes present in the population.

 

Conclusion

A caste census may not sit well with the goal of a casteless society, but it may serve as a means of addressing inequities in society. With every passing day and increasing social awareness, the urgency to do away with the caste system is being sharply felt. Dr. BR Ambedkar stated that if India had to attain a place of pride among the comity of nations, caste would have to be annihilated first.

The 21st century is the right time to solve India’s caste question, which would otherwise extract a heavy price, not just sociologically, but also politically and economically, and make us fall behind in the development index.

 


General Studies – 3


 

9. Managing such a diverse border is a complex task but vital from the point of view of national security. With a special emphasis on Arunachal Pradesh, examine the various challenges and strategies for effective border management in India.

Reference: Indian Express

Introduction

India has one of the longest and most varied of international borders. Historical and political reasons have left India with an artificial unnatural border. Border Management is an integral approach towards borders in which along with security enhancement, infrastructure & human development is undertaken. The challenge of coping with long-standing territorial and boundary disputes with China and Pakistan, combined with porous borders along some of the most difficult terrain in the world, has made effective and efficient border management a national priority.

India and China share a disputed 4,000-kilometer border.

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India has had to deal with numerous challenges with respect to border management such as:

  • Porous borders: International borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh run through diverse terrain including deserts, marshes, plains and mountains. This porosity of borders facilitates various illegal activities such as smuggling, trafficking of humans, drugs and arms and infiltration.
  • Contested International borders: History of mistrustand constant border skirmisheswith Pakistan along line of control (LOC) makes India highly susceptible to cross-border terrorism. Similarly, India’s border with Myanmar is threatened by several insurgent groups that have found sanctuaries in jungles along the border. Political boundary issues of “enclaves and adverse possessions” in Bangladesh have resulted in political sensitivity along the entire eastern border.
  • Inefficiency in Border management: Indian borders continue to be guarded by military and police forces that report to different ministries in the Centre and states, making the border management task arduous and leading to duplication of efforts by the security forces.
  • Lack of critical infrastructure: Critical infrastructure such as observation towers, bunkers, Border Flood Lights etc. are lacking in many border areas which also prevent deployment of hi-tech equipment.
  • Poor intelligence and resource efficiency: Security forces are ill-equipped to handle border management given poor intelligence capabilities and severe resource deficiency.
  • Ethnic conflicts and separatist movements: The situation has worsened due to the changed demographic profile of many Border States and shift in ethnic balance of communities as a result of illegal migration.
  • Over-population in the border areas: Density of population in the border areas at some places is approximately 700-800 persons per square km on the Indian side and about 1,000 persons on the Bangladesh side.
  • Political instability and disorder in its periphery impacts India’s security directly or indirectly. Proxy war between India and Pakistan adds to this security risk.

The implications on the internal security due to the above challenges of border management is marked by

  • increased cross-border terrorism
  • infiltration and ex-filtration of armed militants
  • emergence of non-state actors
  • nexus between narcotics traffickers and arms smugglers
  • left-wing extremism
  • fake Indian Currency network
  • separatist movements aided and abetted by external powers
  • illegal cattle trade

Way forward:

  • Infrastructure along with border has to be improved – rail connectivity along with road connectivityhas to be provided for quick mobilization.
  • Building of additional checkpoints and Border postsalong major and minor trade routes connected with borders
  • Building of floating bridges, walls & electrical fenceswhere there is high probability of infiltration.
  • Taking up of joint Border management with Countries like Myanmar, Bhutan and Nepal.
  • Improving healthcare, physical infrastructure and digital connectivity in villagesaround borders thus making them stakeholder in Border Management.
  • Madhav Godbole task forcerecommendations on border management need to be implemented.
  • It had recommended that the CRPF should be designated as the primary national level counter-insurgency force. This would enable the other central paramilitary forces like the BSF and Indo-Tibetan Border Police to return to their primary role of better border management.
  • It had also recommended that all paramilitary forces managing unsettled borders should operate directly under the control of the armyand that there should be lateral induction from the army to the paramilitary forces so as to enhance their operational effectiveness.
  • The principle of ‘single point control’ must be followedif the borders are to be effectively managed.
  • The advances in surveillance technology, particularly satellite and aerial imagery, can help to maintain a constant vigil along the LAC and make it possible to reduce physical deployment.

Conclusion:

Keeping a strong vigil on its border is very important for any nation to check any kind of illegal activities or intrusion through them. For India, the task becomes difficult where terrain and climate is very complex across some of its border areas. Focussing on improved technology will help in making the task easier for the security forces and make its borders more secure.

Value addition

China’s claim on Arunachal Pradesh

  • China claims some 90,000 sq km of Arunachal Pradesh as its territory.
  • It calls the area “Zangnan” in the Chinese language and makes repeated references to “South Tibet”.
  • Chinese maps show Arunachal Pradesh as part of China, and sometimes parenthetically refer to it as “so-called Arunachal Pradesh”.
  • China makes periodic efforts to underline this unilateral claim to Indian territory. Giving Chinese names to places in Arunachal Pradesh is part of that effort.

China’s rationale behind claiming these areas

  • The People’s Republic of China disputes the legal status of the McMahon Line, the boundary between Tibet and British India that was agreed at the Simla Convention — officially the ‘Convention Between Great Britain, China, and Tibet’ — of 1914.
  • China was represented by a plenipotentiary of the Republic of China.
  • The Chinese representative did not consent to the Simla Convention, saying Tibet had no independent authority to enter into international agreements.
  • The McMohan Line, named after Henry McMahon, the chief British negotiator at Shimla, was drawn from the eastern border of Bhutan to the Isu Razi pass on the China-Myanmar border.
  • China claims territory to the south of the McMahon Line, lying in Arunachal Pradesh.
  • China also bases its claims on the historical ties that have existed between the monasteries in Tawang and Lhasa.

 

10. A combination of preventive measures and addressing the underlying grievances is needed to effectively address the threat posed by the Khalistan movement to the internal security of India. Discuss.

Reference: Insights on India

Introduction

The Khalistan movement is a fight for a separate, sovereign Sikh state in present day Punjab (both India and Pakistan). The movement was crushed in India following Operation Blue Star (1984) and Operation Black Thunder (1986 and 1988), but it continues to evoke sympathy and support among sections of the Sikh population, especially in the Sikh diaspora in countries such as Canada, the UK, and Australia.

In the recent past, Amritpal Singh, a follower of the Sikh militant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale who has been preaching the Idea of Khalistan Separatist Movement in Punjab for a few months, has managed to escape.

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Khalistan movement: Background

  • Its origins have been traced back to India’s independence and subsequent Partition along religious lines.
    • The Punjab province, which was divided between India and Pakistan, witnessed communal violence and generated millions of refugees.
    • The historic Sikh Empire’s capital, Lahore, as well as sacred Sikh sites like Nankana Sahib, the birthplace of Guru Nanak, went to Pakistan.
  • While most Sikhs found themselves in India, they were a small minority (2% of the population) in the country.
  • The political struggle for greater autonomy began with the Punjabi Suba Movementfor the creation of a Punjabi-speaking state.
  • The States Reorganisation Commission report (1955) rejected this demand, but the state of Punjab was reorganised (trifurcatedinto the Hindi-Hindu-majority HP and Haryana, and Punjabi-Sikh-majority Punjab) in 1966.
  • The Punjabi Suba movement had galvanised the Akali Dal, which concluded theAnandpur Sahib Resolution (1973) demanding autonomy (not secession from India) for the state of Punjab.
  • This demand had gone global by 1971 – when an advertisement in The New York Times proclaimed thebirth of Khalistan.
  • By the 1980s, the appeal of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale had started creating trouble for the government.
  • He and his followers (mostly from the lower rungs of the social ladder) were getting increasingly violent.
  • In 1982, with support from the Akali Dal’s leadership, he launched a civil disobedience movement called the Dharam Yudh Morchaand took up residence inside the Golden Temple, directing demonstrations and clashes with the police.
  • The Khalistan movement was crushed in India following Operation Blue Star(by the Indian Army to flush out militants from the Golden Temple and neutralise Bhindranwale in 1984) and Operation Black Thunder (1986 and 1988).
  • While the operations were ostensibly successful in their aims, they gravely wounded (by the desecration of the Golden Temple) the Sikh community around the world and also galvanised the demand for Khalistan.

Decline of support to khalistan movement

  • The bulk of the population turned against the militants, and India headed towards economic liberalisation.
  • Punjab has long been peaceful, but the movement lives among some Sikh communities overseas.
  • The diaspora is composed predominantly of people who don’t want to live in India.
  • These people include many who remember the bad old days of the 1980s,and thus the support for Khalistan remains stronger there.
  • The deep-rooted anger over Operation Blue Star and the desecration of the Golden Temple continues to resonate with some in the newer generations of Sikhs. However, even as Bhindranwale is viewed as a martyr by many and the 1980s remembered as dark times, this has not manifested into tangible political support for the Khalistan cause.
  • There is a small minority that is clinging to the past, and that small minority remains significant not because of popular support, but rather because they are trying to keep up their political influence with various political parties both from the left and the right.

Impact on India’s internal security

  • Threat to national security and integrity: the resurgence of the Khalistan movement is a threat to national security similar to the Kashmir and NE insurgency.
  • May darken Punjab’s future: a poor law and order situation may deter investors to invest in Punjab thus further deteriorating its economy and leading to spillover effects in social and political sectors.
  • Involvement of diaspora: The idea of forming a separate state for Sikhs has died down in Punjab; however, it has attracted the attention of a large audience in the diaspora who now have settled in other nations for long and thus have lost their affinity with India as their homeland.
  • Misuse of social media:which defies any international boundary, thus misused by separatists in Pakistan and other nations.
  • Bilateral relations may be harmed:the Khalistan issue has already harmed Indo- Canada relations and now straining Indo-UK due to the conduction of Referendum 2020 in these countries despite the Indian Government’s objection.

Steps to be taken to nip Khalistan from the bud

  • Recognising new challenges: Recognizing the challenge posed by traditional stakeholders and new social media recruits is necessary.
  • Collaborate with foreign governments: The Indian security and intelligence forces need to collaborate with foreign governments to monitor anti-India activities carried out by the Khalistani forces and restrict their funding sources.
  • Enhance security efforts: The Indian government must heighten security efforts to counteract the increase in Khalistani social media activity since the opening up of the Kartarpur Corridor.
  • Promote economic and social development: At the domestic level, the Punjab and Union governments and security forces must collaborate to improve the economic condition of the state to again put the state on the path of development.
  • Engage with the Sikh diaspora: Indian agencies, such as the missions established in those countries, must diplomatically engage with the Sikh diaspora to tackle the misinformation campaign being peddled by Khalistani organizations. Such engagements will facilitate a positive relationship between the Indian state and the Sikh diaspora.
  • Beef up security: Indian security forces need to step up their preparedness to tackle the increase in drones used to deliver weapons and drugs to Punjab.
  • Engage Pakistan: In addition to Western countries, India should not back away from exercising diplomacy with Pakistan and should work to extradite terrorists hiding in Pakistan.

Conclusion

The violent Khalistani movement has vanished; however, the idea of a separate Sikh nation i.e Khalistan is yet to disappear.


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