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India needs to fix domestic issues to win respect abroad, says Tharoor

He said it was important for India to come across to the rest of the world as an example of a thriving and harmonious society.

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Shashi Tharoor

Underlining that India has been more of a “rule taker” than a “rule maker” at the UN, senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Friday said the country needs to fix its domestic issues, including that of the economy, and have “moral authority” if it wants to be a rules contributor to the world.

The former Union minister said he has always argued that India’s international credibility is often a reflection of its domestic postures and the success at home is the best guarantee that “we will be respected and effective abroad”.

“Now we have unfortunately been going through a few very bad years domestically in terms of crumbling social cohesion, the eruption and uncontrollable spread of the coronavirus pandemic, the border troubles with China, the economic collapse after demonetisation, unemployment figures worst recorded in the history in these years, everything is wrong,” he said at a session of the 7th national forum of the Public Affairs Forum of India.

Mr. Tharoor said India must use its capacity to demand constructive changes in global governance.

“India has to be what it was trying to be before the last five years or so which was a sort of an example to the developing world — the world’s first development power,” the former UN Under Secretary General said.

Mr. Tharoor hoped that India would contribute to initiatives to catalyse a new consensus for the world.

“But before it does so, we really have to fix our internal situation first so that we can face the world with greater credibility and with renewed admiration that we used to enjoy till very recently,” he said.

Asked about reforms at the UN and whether they were linked with monetary contributions by member states, Mr. Tharoor said, “I don’t think cheque book alone is important.”

India is a state that has contributed generously and was among the leading donors to UN’s democracy fund, initiatives on ideas, decolonisation, racism, apartheid, and also also contributed in kind through peacekeeping, Mr. Tharoor said.

“India has nothing to be ashamed of, we have very much been at the forefront of international efforts at the UN to do a lot of good work and to contribute in terms of leadership. Yet, we have been more of a ‘rule taker’ than a ‘rule maker’ and these rules have been made by the big powerful countries and we haven’t been counted amongst them,” he said.

“Which is why we need both economic growth and prosperity on the one hand, which has gone down the tubes in the last few years, and we also need moral authority if we want to be a rule contributor,” Mr. Tharoor said.

That moral authority comes from the successful management of our own challenges including the great challenges of religious, ethnic and linguistic diversity in India which the country had been managing very well till recently, he said

It also involves managing some of the contradictions in the neighbourhood and being magnanimous to neighbours rather than being hostile to them, Mr. Tharoor said, claiming that India had slipped on that count recently.

Mr. Tharoor said it was important for India to come across to the rest of the world as an example of a thriving and harmonious society.

“If we can get our act together and lead our country in the direction that we have traditionally aspired to — that has been hailed as a success in the past, we will once again be in a position to set an example whether on the Security Council or off it,” he said.

“If India does this and also prospers economically, people from other countries will state that they cannot imagine a Security Council without India “rather than us demanding it as we are doing it now,” Mr. Tharoor said.

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Farmers’ rail roko protest continues at Jandiala Guru

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Farmers RAil Roko Protest

Amritsar, December 4: The farmers’ protests against the agri laws implemented by the Centre entered the 73rd day in Jandiala Guru.

The kisan union leaders said they would not accept any condition of the Central Government and the latter to revoke the controversial laws.

The farmers also burnt an effigy of the state government and criticised Chief Minister Capt Amrinder Singh’s statement on the farmers’ stir.

Satnam Singh Pannu, chief, Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee, said the protest led by Sukhwinder Singh Sabhra, Jasbir Singh Pindi and Lakhwinder Singh Varyamnangal at Kundli border was underway.

The Centre wants to amend the agri laws, which would be a betrayal. Just as the Britishers cheated, the Union Government also wants to deceive us. We have single demand to repeal three agri laws, the Electricity Amendment Bill 2020 and the recent amendment in the Environment Protection Act.

Sarwan Singh Pandher, general secretary, Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee, said, “The Centre should assure minimum support price on all crops. Around 25 vehicles of the union are going daily to Delhi. On December 11, more than 500 tractor-trailers will leave for Delhi.”

Addressing the activists during the ‘rail roko’ protest in Jandiala Guru, Pandher said Capt Amarinder’s statement (farmers are a threat to national security) is highly objectionable.

Gurbachan Singh Chabba and Jarmanjit Singh Bandala said the central leadership of the Congress had convened a special session by Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi demanding repeal of the agri laws while Capt Amarinder was speaking on the behalf of the BJP.

Meanwhile, a group of residents from Malanwali village and members of the Amritsar Bar Association led by Advocate Kuljit Singh left for Delhi to participate in the agitation.

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Meghalaya parties’ stir to enforce ILP to keep state out of CAA purview

To visit the ILP-governed states, foreign nationals and even people from other states of India, now need to take a permit.

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Meghalaya CAA Protest

Shillong: Meghalaya Governor Satya Pal Malik on Friday assured an apex body of over 17 organisations that he along with Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma would soon go to Delhi to urge Home Minister Amit Shah to implement the Inner Line Permit (ILP) system across the state.

If the ILP is enforced in entire Meghalaya, the hill state, like other four northeastern states — Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Mizoram and Manipur, would keep itself out of the purview of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA).

The Confederation of Meghalaya Social Organisations (CoMSO), an umbrella body of more than 17 organisations, which has been spearheading the agitation since last year for the introduction of ILP in the remaining part of the state, on Friday held sit-in demonstrations in all the 11 districts and in some sub-divisional headquarters besides in the capital city of Shillong.

After the state-wide demonstrations, a delegation of CoMSO led by its Secretary Roy Kupar Synrem met the Governor and sought his urgent intervention to implement the ILP by the Centre in the remaining part of the state.

“The Governor has assured us that he along with the Chief Minister would soon go to Delhi to meet the Union Home Minister Amit Shah and request the Central government to promulgate the ILP in Meghalaya,” Synrem told the media.

He said: “We have apprised the Governor about the urgent need of ILP in Meghalaya. We have also urged the Governor to approve the Meghalaya Residents Safety and Security (Amendment) Bill, 2020 which was passed by the state Assembly long back.”

“Conrad Sangma prove yourself that you can lead Meghalaya to the ILP regime, if not please step down,” said one of the banners displayed at Friday’s agitation.

The CoMSO, after several months of silence due to the Covid-19 induced situations, resumed its stir on November 27 by holding black flag protests across Meghalaya.

“We have been asking all the 60 Meghalaya MLAs and three MPs of the state to hold sit-in demonstrations in Delhi to ensure that the ILP is enforced in the state soon,” Synrem told IANS over phone.

He said: “Even though the Meghalaya Assembly had unanimously adopted a resolution on December 19 last year, the Home Ministry is yet to take appropriate steps to enforce the ILP in the remaining part of the state.”

The CoMSO leader warned the National People’s Party-led Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) government that if the ILP was not implemented in the next few months, there would be more protests across the state.

The Bharatiya Janata Party with two MLAs is part of the MDA government in the state and one of the legislators Alexander Laloo Hek is the Health Minister.

The ILP under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873 was in force in Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Mizoram. On December 11 last year it was promulgated in Manipur, to allow for inward travel of an Indian citizen into the ILP enforced areas for a stipulated period with the written permission of the state authority.

To visit the ILP-governed states, foreign nationals and even people from other states of India, now need to take a permit.

The main aim of the ILP system is to check settlement of other Indian nationals in these states to protect the native population. There are also protection extended to indigenous people with regard to land, jobs and other facilities.

The ILP is currently issued for a minimum of 15 days and maximum one year, depending on the applicant’s purpose and necessity.

The Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland governments are issuing the ILP through the online process to facilitate any Indian to obtain this from anywhere in the country.

The central government had earlier announced that the CAA would not apply to the ILP and the Tribal Autonomous District Council (TADC) areas.

In the northeastern states there are 10 TADCs, constituted under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution. While Assam, Meghalaya and Mizoram have three TADCs each, Tripura has one.

All eight northeastern states and neighbouring West Bengal witnessed violent protests for many weeks last year and early this year against the CAA.

Notified on January 10, the Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2019 (CAA) seeks to grant Indian citizenship to non-Muslims minorities — Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians, who have migrated from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan till December 31, 2014, after facing faith-based persecution.

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Gurugram police detain group for sitting on Delhi-Jaipur Expressway

The farmers were allegedly heading to Delhi to join the anti-farm law demonstrations.

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delhi gurgaon border

Gurugram: A group of people were detained by the Gurugram police on Friday from the Kherki Daula toll plaza on the National Highway 48. The detainees were allegedly sitting on the National Highway in support of the ongoing farmers’ demonstrations, the police said.

The police said the group of people was detained for violating Section 144 of the CrPC, and have been charged under Section 188 of the IPC.

“We had received some inputs that a group of 15-20 people will sit on the National Highway and can block the traffic movement at the Kherki Daula toll plaza. These people had also posted some videos on social media platforms in support of the farmers’ protests. They have been detained for violation of Section 144 of the CrPC,” said Nitika Gahlaut, DCP, Manesar.

During the police action, the detained persons hailing from different villages in Rewari, Mahendergarh, Narnaul and Nuh districts allegedly raised anti-government slogans and opposed the police detention before being pacified by the cops.

This is the second instance in Gurugram when the police detained a group of people amid the ongoing farmers’ stir. On December 1, around two-dozen farmers had been detained by the Gurugram police at the Gurugram-Nuh border. The farmers were allegedly heading to Delhi to join the anti-farm law demonstrations.

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