News & Editorial Analysis 26 December 2022

News & Editorial Analysis 26 December 2022

The Hindu News Analysis

1 – About the India Nepal Relationship:


Topic à International Relations


Pushpa Kamal Dahal, the head of the legislative branch of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Centre), was nominated prime minister of the Himalayan nation on Sunday by Nepalese President Bidhya Devi Bhandari.

The President’s Office in Sital Nivas informed the public that Mr. Dahal, well known as “Prachanda,” would take the oath of office as Prime Minister on Monday at 4 p.m.

The Historical Ties: How are they going?

Because of the geographical, historical, cultural, and economic ties that go back centuries, Nepal is a significant neighbour of India and holds a special place in its foreign policy.

Given that Buddha was born in Lumbini, which is today’s Nepal, Hinduism and Buddhism have parallel ties to India and Nepal.

The two nations have tight relationships through marriages and familial ties, colloquially known as Roti-Beti ka Rishta, in addition to sharing an open border and allowing unrestricted movement of people between them.

The foundation of the unique ties that exist between India and Nepal is the India-Nepal Treaty of Peace and Friendship of 1950.

What exactly is the 1950 Treaty of Peace and Friendship?

In the two nations, Indian and Nepali nationals are to be treated equally in terms of residency, property, business, and mobility, according to the treaty.

Additionally, it establishes national treatment for firms in both India and Nepal (i.e., once imported, foreign goods would be treated no differently than domestic goods).

Nepal now has access to Indian-made weapons as well.

What is Nepal’s Importance to India?

Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Sikkim, and Bihar are the five Indian states with which Nepal has a border. Consequently, a significant hub for commercial and cultural interchange.

There are two ways to look at the significance for India:

Their strategic value for the national security of India.

Their position in the perspective of India’s function in world politics.

Nepal, along with Bhutan, serves as a northern “borderland” flanks and functions as a buffer state against any potential assault from China. Nepal is located directly in the heart of India’s “Himalayan boundaries.”

In terms of biodiversity and potential for hydropower, rivers that originate in Nepal feed the enduring river systems of India.

Nepal is a popular pilgrimage destination for many Indians since it has a huge number of Hindu and Buddhist sacred sites.

What are the areas where the two countries cooperate?

Trade and Economy: India is Nepal’s major trading partner, the largest source of foreign investment, and it serves as a transit country for nearly all of Nepal’s trade with third countries.

The total value of bilateral trade in 2018–19 was INR 57,858 crore ($8.27 billion). While Nepal exported INR 3558 cr (US$ 508 mn) to India in 2018–19, India exported INR 54,300 cr (US$ 7.76 bn) to Nepal.

Indian companies working in the manufacturing, banking, insurance, dry port, power, tourism, and other sectors.

Connectivity: Tibet, which has very little road connectivity, is open on one side of landlocked Nepal, which is also encircled by India on three sides.

In order to strengthen inter-personal connections and foster economic growth and development, India and Nepal have launched a number of connectivity initiatives.

For the construction of an electric rail route connecting Kathmandu with Raxaul in India, MOUs have been signed by the two governments.

Within the framework of trade and transit agreements, India is attempting to create inland canals for the flow of freight, giving Nepal more access to the sea under the name “connecting Sagarmatha (Mt. Everest) with Sagar” (Indian Ocean).

Development Assistance: The Indian government helps Nepal grow, concentrating on building infrastructure at the local level.

Infrastructure, health, water resources, education, and rural and community development are among the areas of aid.

Defense Cooperation: Through the provision of equipment and training, bilateral defence cooperation helps the Nepalese Army modernise.

The Indian Army’s Gorkha Regiments are partially staffed via recruiting in Nepal’s hill areas.

Since 2011, India and Nepal have participated in a joint military exercise called Surya Kiran.

Cultural: Initiatives have been made to encourage interpersonal connections between various local organisations in Nepal in the fields of academia, media, and art & culture.

For the twinning of Kathmandu-Varanasi, Lumbini-Bodhgaya, and Janakpur-Ayodhya, India has signed three sister-city agreements.

Nepal continues to be the largest beneficiary of humanitarian aid from India since it is located in an ecologically fragile area where earthquakes and floods can cause significant damage to property and human lives.

Indian Community: There are a significant number of Indians living in Nepal, including entrepreneurs, traders, physicians, engineers, and workers (including seasonal and migrant workers in the construction industry).

Multilateral Partnership: Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal (BBIN), the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), the Non-Aligned Movement, and the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation are just a few of the multilateral forums that India and Nepal are members of.

What recent developments have there been?

The cabinet also approved investments totaling 1236 crore for the Arun-3 hydroelectric project in 2019.

On the Arun River in Eastern Nepal, there is a run-of-river hydroelectric plant called Arun-3 (900 MW).

Build Own Operate and Transfer (BOOT): A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the project’s execution on a Build Own Operate and Transfer (BOOT) basis for a period of 30 years, including five years of the construction period, was signed between the Government of Nepal and Sutlej Jal Vikas Nigam (SJVN) Limited in 2008.

India’s International Centre for Buddhist Culture and Heritage is currently being built in the Lumbini Monastic Zone. The India Prime Minister performed the “shilanyas” ritual to kick off construction while he was in town.

The centre will be a top-notch establishment that will welcome pilgrims and visitors from all over the world to experience the essence of Buddhism’s spiritual qualities.

The building is designed to serve scholars and Buddhist pilgrims who travel to Lumbini from all over the world.

Hydropower Projects: The two leaders signed five agreements, including one for the creation and execution of the 490.2 megawatt Arun-4 hydropower project between Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam (SJVN) Ltd and the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA).

Additionally, Nepal asked Indian businesses to contribute to its West Seti hydropower project.

Establishing a Satellite Campus: India has proposed to establish a Rupandehi-based IIT satellite campus and has forwarded draught memorandum of agreement for signature between Indian and Nepali universities.

Projects such as the Pancheshwar Multipurpose Project, a crucial component of the 1996 Mahakali Treaty between Nepal and India, and the West Seti Hydropower Project, a reservoir-style project with a projected capacity of 1,200 megawatts, were discussed in Nepal.

Cross-border Rail Link: The 35-kilometer rail line that runs from Jayanagar in Bihar to Kurtha in Nepal will be operationalized, and it will then be extended to Bijalpura and Bardibas.

Another project is for the construction of a 90 km long, 132 kV double circuit transmission line that will run from Tila (Solukhumbu) to Mirchaiya (Siraha), not far from the Indian border.

Multilateral Projects: Other agreements were also struck to ensure continuous deliveries of petroleum products between Indian Oil Corporation and Nepal Oil Corporation and to provide technical cooperation in the railway industry. Nepal was also admitted to the International Solar Alliance.

What are the difficulties?

Territorial Issues: The Kalapani boundary dispute is one of the major obstacles to improving relations between India and Nepal. These borders were established by the British in 1816, and in 1947, India took over the territory over which the British had exercised territorial sovereignty.

While 98% of the border between India and Nepal was marked, Susta and Kalapani were still up in the air.

In 2019, Nepal published a new political map that included the Uttarakhand regions of Kalapani, Limpiyadhura, and Lipulekh as well as the Bihar region of Susta.

Problems with the Treaty of Friendship and Peace: The Nepali government requested the 1950 Treaty of Peace and Friendship in 1949 to maintain the unique relations it had with British India, as well as to grant them an open border and the ability to work in India.

Today, however, it is seen as a manifestation of an unequal relationship and an imposent by Indians.

Since the middle of the 1990s, it has sometimes and haltingly been mentioned in Joint Statements that it needs to be revised and updated.

The Irritant of Demonetisation India revoked large value (Rs 1,000 and Rs 500) currency notes totaling Rs 15.44 trillion in November 2016. More than Rs 15.3 trillion worth of new currency has been returned as of late.

Nevertheless, a large number of Nepalese citizens who were legally permitted to possess Rs 25,000 in Indian money were left out in the cold.

The central bank of Nepal, the Nepal Rashtra Bank, has assets at Rs 7 crore, while the estimated value of public holdings is Rs 500 crore.

The undetermined outcome of the report submitted by the Eminent Persons Group (EPG) and India’s unwillingness to accept demonetised currency at the Nepal Rastra Bank have not helped to improve India’s standing in Nepal.

China’s Intervention:

As India’s influence over Nepal has waned in recent years, China has progressively stepped in with loans, investments, and other forms of assistance.

As part of its broad aspirations to increase international trade, China views Nepal as a crucial partner in its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and wants to invest in Nepal’s infrastructure.

Nepal’s status as a buffer state between China and India may be weakened by growing collaboration between the two countries.

China, on the other hand, wants to prevent any anti-Chinese sentiment among the Tibetans who reside in Nepal.

Internal Security: This is a huge issue for India because the Indo-Nepal border is mostly unguarded and used as a recruiting ground for terrorist organisations and rebel groups from the country’s North East.

Differences between ethnicity and trust: The trust gap between India and Nepal has gotten worse over time as a result of India’s reputation for putting off the start of different projects.

Some ethnic groups in Nepal harbour animosity toward India because they believe that India interferes with their political independence and shows excessive courtesy to them.

What might the future hold?

Dialogues for Territorial Disputes: Today, it is important to steer clear of territorial nationalist rhetoric in favour of establishing a low-key debate in which both parties exhibit tact while they consider their options. For the neighbourhood first policy to take hold, India must be a considerate and giving partner.

Under the auspices of international law on trans-boundary water disputes, the matter shall be arbitrated through diplomatic negotiations.

The resolution of the boundary issue between India and Bangladesh should be used as a guide in this situation.

Sensitization to Nepal: India should be more proactive in its dealings with Nepal on a political, bureaucratic, and interpersonal level.

In the meantime, India should steer Nepal toward more inclusive discourse in the spirit of friendship while continuing its policy of staying out of Nepal’s domestic affairs.

Strengthening Economic Relations: India and Nepal must be able to develop trust through the power trade deal. Even if more solar energy projects are being built in India, hydropower is the only energy source that can meet the country’s peak demand.

By purchasing electricity from Nepal, India would be able to control its peak demand and avoid spending billions of dollars on the construction of new power facilities, many of which would emit pollution.

2 – Details of the NGT:


Topic à Statutory and Non-Statutory Bodies


The number of polluted lengths in India’s rivers has decreased from 351 in 2018 to 311 in 2022 despite the number of the most polluted sections remaining almost unchanged, according to a study from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) that was conducted in November but only made public this week.


The National Green Tribunal is known as NGT.

It is a specialised organisation created under the National Green Tribunal Act of 2010 to rapidly and effectively handle cases involving environmental protection, the preservation of forests, and other natural resources.

India became the third country in the world (after Australia and New Zealand) and the first developing country to establish a specialised environmental tribunal with the establishment of the NGT.

The NGT is required to make a final judgement within six months of the application or appeal’s submission.

The NGT convenes at five locations: New Delhi is the main one, and the others are in Bhopal, Pune, Kolkata, and Chennai.

What Is the Structure of NGT?

The Tribunal is composed of the Chairperson, Judicial Members, and Expert Members. They are ineligible for reappointment and are required to serve for a period of three years or until they turn 65, whichever occurs first.

The Chairperson is chosen by the Central Government along with the Chief Justice of India (CJI).

A selection committee will be established by the federal government to pick the judicial and expert members.

The number of full-time judges and expert members must be at least 10 and no more than 20.

What are its powers and purview?

The Tribunal may be involved in any civil case involving material environmental issues (including enforcement of any legal right relating to environment).

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) was given the go-ahead by the Supreme Court in October 2021 to resolve environmental issues on a national level as a “unique” forum with suo motu (on its own initiative) authority.

According to SC, the NGT’s duties must include equally significant preventative, ameliorative, or remedial tasks in addition to adjudicatory ones.

NGT has appellate jurisdiction to hear appeals in addition to initial jurisdiction side upon filing an application because it is a statutory adjudicatory body like Courts (Tribunal).

The Tribunal will be guided by “natural justice” principles rather than the 1908 Code of Civil Procedure.

Before making any decisions or giving out any rewards, the ideas of sustainable development, prudence, and polluter pays must all be taken into account.

The NGT may issue an order at the Tribunal’s discretion to provide relief and compensation to those who have experienced environmental harm as a result of pollution and other causes (including accidents involving the handling of hazardous substances), as well as to restore damaged property and the surrounding environment.

An order, judgement, or award made by a tribunal may be enforced as a civil court’s decree.

A system of sanctions for non-compliance is also outlined in the NGT Act, including three years in prison, a fine of up to 10 crore rupees, or both.

A person may appeal an NGT order, decision, or award to the Supreme Court within 90 days of the communication date.

What benefits does NGT offer?

The NGT has made a name for itself as a major force in environmental regulation throughout the years, imposing strict regulations on issues including waste management, deforestation, and pollution.

NGT creates a path for the advancement of environmental legislation by putting in place an alternative dispute resolution system.

The weight of environmental lawsuits in the higher courts is lessened.

NGT is a more expedient, inexpensive, and informal method of resolving environmental disputes.

It is crucial for minimising environmentally harmful behaviours.

The Chairperson and the members are likely to make judgements independently and without giving in to outside pressure because they are not up for reappointment.

Thanks in great part to the NGT, the Environment Impact Assessment process has been strictly adhered to.

What issues are preventing NGT from operating?

Two notable legislation that are outside the scope of the NGT are the Wildlife (Protection) Act of 1972 and the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act of 2006. The NGT’s power is constrained and occasionally interfered with since the crucial forest rights problem is strongly tied to the environment.

The NGT decisions are being challenged in numerous High Courts under Article 226 due to the assertion by many that a High Court is superior to the NGT because it is a “constitutional body whereas NGT is a statutory entity” (authority of High Courts to issue certain writs). Despite the fact that the NGT Act explicitly indicates that a decision may be appealed to the Supreme Court, this is one of the Act’s flaws because it is not obvious which decisions may be raised in court.

The decisions made by the NGT have also sparked debate and criticism because of how they affect economic growth and development.

The panel has also drawn criticism for deciding on compensation without following a formulaic procedure.

The NGT’s decisions are not fully complied with by the government or the parties involved. Its decisions are occasionally criticised for being unable to carry out within a certain amount of time.

The massive case backlog brought on by a lack of personnel and financial resources has undercut the NGT’s declared goal of concluding appeals within six months.

The delivery of justice is further hampered by the lack of regional benches.

What Significant Decisions Have Been Made by the NGT?

In order to start a steel project, the government of Odisha and the South Korean steelmaker POSCO signed a Memorandum of Understanding in 2012.

It was viewed as a brave gesture on the part of the NGT to support the adjacent towns and forests by delaying the law.

The 2012 Almitra H. Patel vs. Union of India case, in which the NGT issued a judgement outlawing open burning of trash on lands, including landfills, is the most significant case dealing to solid waste management in India.

In the Uttarakhand floods case in 2013, Alaknanda Hydro Power Co. Ltd. was ordered to reimburse the petitioner’s damages; in this instance, the NGT specifically referred to the “polluter pays” principle.

In the Save Mon Federation v. Union of India case, the National Green Tribunal (2013) halted a $6,400 crore hydro project to protect a bird’s habitat.

The NGT declared in 2015 that all diesel vehicles older than ten years will no longer be permitted to run in Delhi-NCR.

An EIA 2006 notification amendment from December 2016 was declared illegal by the NGT because it was believed to be an attempt by the government to circumvent the rules. The main goal of the modifications was to grant local governments the power to approve construction projects for environmental reasons.

Numerous projects that had been unlawfully authorised were either cancelled or given new evaluations, including the Aranmula Airport in Kerala, the Lower Demwe Hydro Power Project, Nyamnjangu in Arunachal Pradesh, mining projects in Goa, and coal mining projects in Chhattisgarh.

The NGT bench determined that the Art of Living Festival at the Yamuna Food Plain had violated environmental regulations in 2017 and imposed a penalty of Rs. 5 crore.

The NGT temporarily outlawed the use of plastic bags in Delhi that were less than 50 microns thick in 2017 because “they were harming the environment, killing wildlife, and blocking drains.”

3 – About the River Pollution:


Topic à Environmental Conservation


The number of polluted lengths in India’s rivers has decreased from 351 in 2018 to 311 in 2022 despite the number of the most polluted sections remaining almost unchanged, according to a study from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) that was conducted in November but only made public this week.


According to the Central Pollution Control Board, 351 river segments in India have pollution in 2018. (CPCB).

Maharashtra has the greatest number of polluted river segments.

Following are some causes of polluted river segments:

Discharge of untreated sewage from urban areas, local governments, and industrial effluents into the catchments from whence they originated.

Problems with the maintenance and operation of sewage and wastewater treatment systems.

Dumping of solid trash near riverbanks

Numerous additional non-point sources of pollution pollutants that are released across a wider area or from dispersed sources, such as roads, grazing areas, construction sites, abandoned mines and pits, and agricultural runoff.

Sewage generation and generation between treatment: The time it takes to treat sewage after it is produced continues to be a major point cause of river contamination.

The country’s estimated daily sewage production from metropolitan areas is 72,368 million litres (MLD), compared to the 31,841 MLD daily sewage treatment capacity, according to a report published by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).

The issue of contaminated river lengths has gotten worse as a result of increased industry and urbanisation.

The government’s recent actions include:

National Water Quality Monitoring Programme (NWMP): The CPCB has been collaborating with State Pollution Control Boards and committees in various states and Union territories to monitor the water quality of rivers and other water bodies across the country as part of the National Water Quality Monitoring Programme.

The states/UTs and local bodies are responsible for treating sewage and industrial effluents to the necessary standards before releasing them into bodies of water, coastal waters, or on land. The process of rejuvenating and cleansing rivers never stops.

NRCP and Namami Gange: The functioning of state and municipal governments are supported by the Union ministry. It provides financial and technical help for the elimination of pollution in selected river lengths across the country through the Central Sector Namami Gange Scheme for rivers in the Ganga basin and the Centrally Sponsored National River Conservation Plan (NRCP) Scheme for other rivers.

NRCP: The nation’s river cleanup project was sparked by the Ganga Action Plan (GAP), which was unveiled in 1985. The Ganga Action Plan was expanded upon in 1995 by the National River Conservation Plan (NRCP).

The NRCP works to enhance the water quality of the nation’s rivers, which are its primary water supplies, by implementing pollution abatement techniques.

4 – Details of the Omicron Variant:

Prelims Specific Topic


As of now: There have been multiple further waves of COVID-19 infections around the world after the initial COVID-19 epidemic in Wuhan, China, in 2019. The recently discovered Variants of Concern (VOCs) of the causative virus, SARS-CoV-2, have been a major contributor to these waves. But up until recently, China’s zealous “zero-COVID” policy, which entails extensive lockdowns, sizable quarantines, and early vaccination programmes, was successful in keeping the disease under control. The abrupt change in policy has increased the number of COVID-19 cases across the country.

What is the BF.7 Variant of the Coronavirus?

The Omicron subvariant BF.7, which has been around for more than a year, is the most common viral strain in China.

Over 500 distinct Omicron sub-variants are already in existence.

The BA.5 sub-variant gave rise to the BF.7, also known as BA.

BF.7 is found everywhere, not just in China.

More than 5% of diseases in the US and more than 7% of cases in the UK were brought on by it in October 2022.

Similar to how the SARS-CoV-2 tree’s main stem sprouts branches and sub-branch, viruses also produce lineages and sub-lineages when they evolve.

In a lab context, antibodies from vaccinated or infected persons were less likely to eradicate the BF.7 sub-variant than the original Wuhan virus that first appeared globally in 2020 because the BF.7 sub-variant is 4.4 times more resistant to neutralisation than the original D614G variation.

A variant with a higher neutralisation resistance has a higher chance of spreading in a population and replacing other variants.

How do new variations arise?

When a virus multiplies, it doesn’t always succeed in making an exact copy of itself.

As a result, over time, the genetic sequence of the virus may start to gradually diverge.

Any modification to the viral genomic sequence that takes place during this phase is referred to be a mutation.

In some cases, viruses with recent mutations are referred to as Variants. Variants might differ from one another by one mutation or by several.

When a new virus variation emerges in a population and differs from the original virus in terms of functionality, it is commonly referred to as a new strain of the virus.

All strains are variants, even if not all variants are strains.

#Nepal_Relationship #NGT #River_Pollution #Omicron_Variant #GS-II #GS-III #International_Relations #Statutory_Non-Statutory_Bodies #Environmental_Conservation #Prelims #India #World #States #The_Hindu_Analysis

The Hindu Editorial Analysis

Forest Rights & Heritage Conservation


Ten of the 39 Western Ghats regions that UNESCO recognised as being significant for biodiversity in 2012 are located in Karnataka. Before designating regions as global historic sites, UNESCO consults the local population to determine how the designation may affect their way of life and source of income.

A survey of several groups, including Scheduled Tribes (STs), Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (OTFDs), Scheduled Castes (SCs), Other Backward Classes (OBCs), minorities, and the general category, was conducted in the Karnataka grame panchayats close to the world heritage sites (GC). The vast majority of respondents claimed to be unaware of the procedure for designating UNESCO historic monuments.

The 2006 Forest Rights Act (FRA):

The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act (FRA) acknowledges the rights of tribal groups and other traditional forest dwellers to the forest resources they depend on for a range of needs, including habitation, subsistence, and other sociocultural necessities.

It recognises and grants the right to occupy forest land to scheduled tribes of forest dwellers (FDST) and other traditional forest dwellers (OTFD) who have lived there for many generations.

While preserving the way of life and food security of the FDST and OTFD, it enhances the forest conservation regime.

The process for establishing the kind and quantity of Individual Forest Rights (IFR), Community Forest Rights (CFR), or both, that may be granted to FDST and OTFD must be started by the Gram Sabha.

The Forest Rights Act states that:

Ownership rights:

It allows FDST and OTFD ownership rights to any land used for cultivation by tribal people or forest dwellers up to a maximum of 4 hectares.

No new lands will be granted; ownership only extends to land that the concerned family is already cultivating.

Rights of use:

Access to small-scale forestry products and grazing grounds are among the citizens’ rights.

Rights to support and development:

Depending on limitations for the preservation of the forest, accessibility to basic needs, and recovery in the event of an unauthorised eviction or forced relocation.

Rights to manage forests:

This right includes the authority to restore, protect, or manage any communal forest resource that has historically been preserved and retained for use in the future.

Rights of the first occupants:

Most of the people who lived in the forest owned plots of land no larger than an acre. It is evident that the claims were considerably less than the FRA’s maximum allowed size of four hectares.

The STs experienced a rejection rate that was twice as high as that of the other native forest residents.

In the instance of the STs, the following was determined to be the cause:

Recent invasions:

The area that the claimants are asserting is uninhabited.

“Paisari Bhoomis” (wasteland and forest lands not designated as protected forests or restricted forests) or revenue lands are those that have been claimed from the same family several entries.

The main issue with other traditional forest inhabitants was that they were unable to provide proof of their dependence on and 75 years of residency on forest land.

The following are additional issues that forest dwellers encounter:

According to the officials, the FRA is a respectable law that recognises the rights of the STs in light of their general lack of growth. However, the majority agreed that this Act should come to an end and that the process could not continue indefinitely with new claims always arising.

Residents of the ESZ-affected areas reported that they were beginning to have very limited access to the forest. The projects for building and other development have been suspended.

Both conventional farming and the use of fertiliser are prohibited.

It is against the law for residents to cut down trees that are falling onto their homes in order to make repairs or move earth.

The crops of the farmers who live in the forest are being harmed by the expanding animal rebellion.

No compensation is given to those whose rights to their lands are not recognised.

Compared to locations with consistent income, villages near forests provide more difficulties for livestock owners.

According to locals in the irrigation project-affected areas, the government has taken over grazing pastures to make up for the forest land lost to such projects.

Many forest inhabitants are already leaving “protected zones” permanently and moving to new homes provided by the government. People are concerned that if half of the villages left, it would be impossible for the others to live normal lives.

Because they lack the “Records of Rights, Tenancy, and Crops” that are necessary along with land ownership, the majority of forest people are excluded from basic services and other government benefits provided under various plans and programmes.

Moving forward:

The aforementioned makes it evident that in order to give forest residents enough benefits in a timely manner, the FRA needs to be liberalised while also being defined.

Because it must give “free informed approval,” the gramme sabha appears to have the last say in the Act when deciding on the “planned relocation.” This does not, however, take place. To prevent disputes between groups committed to safeguarding biodiversity and those who have lived in the forest for decades or centuries, the government must make the Act more clear.

The need for biodiversity preservation requires special consideration. One must be given permission to live in the forest. Since they are not dependent on contemporary development necessities like the usage of fertilisers and mobile phones, many of them adhere to the rules of the eco-sensitive zone. Those who want development must also be relocated in accordance with their preferences for a new location and an agreeable package.

This is only possible if local residents are consulted prior to designating a region as “protected.” When protected areas were informed of the designation as a world heritage site or earlier, this did not happen in a transparent manner.

#Forest_Rights #Heritage_Cibservation #The_Hindu_Editorial_Analysis

The Indian Express Editorial Analysis

India’s Investment In Research & Development


If research and development were made one of the aims of the G-20 documents, India would have the opportunity to set the global agenda when it takes the G20 presidency in 2023.

For a country to be independent, to flourish economically, and to prosper, research, development, and technical innovation must be undertaken.

Gross domestic R&D spending for the G20 as a whole:

The G20 countries accounted for 90.6% of the global GERD (current, PPP$) in 2018, according to the most recent report from UNESCO’s Institute for Statistics. (UIS).

Research Intensity (R&D spending as a % of GDP) climbed gradually between 1998 and 2018, rising from 1.43 percent to 1.72 percent, while worldwide R&D spending in 2018 hit a new high of more than 2.2 trillion current PPP$.

Even if assessing expenditures in PPP terms is a useful indicator for gauging economic welfare, when it comes to technological prowess in high-end R&D operations, only hard currency in US dollars will suffice.

With R&D expenditures of $581.6 billion in 2018, the United States led the G20, followed by the European Union ($323 billion) and China ($297.3 billion).

India is far behind, spending a pitiful $17.6 billion on research and development in 2018. The US has a commanding lead over the EU (20%) and China (2%), accounting for 36% of the G20’s overall R&D expenditure.

India’s percentage of G20 R&D spending is less than 1% in terms of dollars.

Investing in R&D is a need for becoming a Vishwa Guru (global leader):

According to the lesson, India still has a long way to go before realising its goal of becoming a Vishwaguru.

And it would appear that the only way to do this is to move India’s large subsidies—known as the “revdi” culture—for things like food, fertiliser, PM Kisan, free energy, and even the PLI manufacturing programme toward an increase in spending on R&I.

Since World War I, the United States has remained in control of the world. The US has the largest and most aggressive open economy because to its technology lead across many industries and its military might.

Many non-G20 nations have RIs that are even greater than those of the G20 nations in terms of research intensity. However, they spend a comparatively very tiny amount total on R&D.

Israel has the greatest RI of more than 5% among these non-G20 nations despite having the lowest R&D spending ($18.6 billion), the smallest population (9.3 million), and the lowest per capita income ($51,430). With 9.3 million people, Israel also has the lowest population density.

Israel is renowned for its innovations, whether they are in the fields of agriculture or defence.

Israel’s economy and competitiveness are largely driven by its innovation system. Incubators, strong science-industry ties, venture capital (VC), and top-notch university instruction are just a few of the effective mechanisms for innovation that the government has built. This is especially true for SMEs. Israel makes a strong case for how, in spite of its modest size, sustainable growth can be achieved by giving R&D investments first priority. India should learn from this.

India’s R&D goals are:

The Indian government has added “Jai Anusandhan” to the traditional motto of Lal Bahadur Shastri and Atal Bihari Vajpayee, “Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan, Jai Vigyan,” in order to acknowledge innovation as a catalyst for economic success (research and innovation).

To encourage innovation and entrepreneurship throughout the nation, the government introduced the Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) in 2016. The amount of money India actually invests on R&D in comparison to other G20 nations, both in absolute terms and as a percentage of its GDP, will determine the success of each of these programmes.

It represents a big step in the direction of the objective of sustainable development (SDGs) Agenda 2030 aims to “construct resilient infrastructure, promote equitable and sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation” in accordance with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

In particular, SDG Target 9.5 calls for countries to promote innovation, vastly expand the number of researchers, and raise both public and commercial R&D spending. The gross domestic spending on R&D (GERD) aggregate is suggested as a way to assess a nation’s commitment to R&D.

How to proceed:

The engagement group Science20’s theme for India’s G20 presidency is “Disruptive Science for Innovative and Sustainable Development,” with a focus on renewable energy for a more sustainable future, universal holistic health, and merging science and society and culture.

India must also work to be technologically brilliant and innovative in a variety of fields, such as industry, agriculture, and defence. It is also urgently necessary to develop inventions that can protect the planet’s basic ecosystem, which includes its air, water, and land. In the fields of IT and digital, India is currently acknowledged as a global leader.

#India #Investment #Research #Development #The_Indian_Express_Editorial_Analysis

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