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Ships of India, US, Japan manoeuvre in rough sea for Malabar

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Chennai, July 17 (IANS) Naval manoeuvres in a rough monsoon sea, cross deck flying and crew exchange were some of the highlights of the trilateral ‘Malabar’ naval exercise between India, the US and Japan in the Bay of Bengal.

The sea phase of the exercise between the Indian Navy, Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force and US Navy saw the ships of the three navies participating in the naval manouvres at sea.

The movement of ships swiftly and smartly, at close quarters, is as an essential aspect fleet work. The manouevering was aimed at streamlining procedure in ship handling and communications, the Indian Navy said in a statement.

On July 15, the exercise also saw cross deck flying operations, wherein a helicopter from USS Shoup landed onboard INS Sahyadri and JN Sazanami. The helicopter from JN Sazanami undertook flying operations from INS Sahyadri and USS Shoup.

“The cross deck flying operations require a high degree of interoperability and knowledge of procedures of participating ships and helicopters,” the Indian Navy said.

Despite the rough seas and challenging weather, the ships and aircraft of the three navies carried out their assigned tasks in a cohesive manner.

An Indian Navy Sea King helicopter undertook transfer of Japanese personnel to INS Vikramaditya as part of crew exchange programme during the exercise. It was followed by flying operations undertaken by the helicopters of the US Navy ships.

On July 16, INS Jyoti, a tanker ship undertook the manoeuvre Replenishment at Sea with US Navy ship Shoup and Japanese navy ship Sazanami. During this operation, INS Jyoti passed the oil hoses to the US and Japanese Navies to exercise transfer of fuel.

INS Vikramaditya, India’s aircraft carrier participating in the exercise, launched MiG 29K fighter aircraft to undertake combat missions against the US Navy F-18 fighter aircraft launched from USS Nimitz, the USN aircraft carrier, for combined crew training.

In addition to the combat operations, the fighter aircraft from both navies undertook composite formation flying, thereby demonstrating another step in the interoperability aimed through this exercise, the statement said.

Sixteen ships and more than 95 aircraft are participating from the three countries in the exercise that comes amid reports of Chinese warships in the Indian Ocean Region in the name of anti-piracy operations, and Beijing’s aggressive posturing in the South China Sea.

Anti-submarine warfare, operation of aircraft carriers, air defence, surface warfare, visit board search and seizure (VBSS), search and rescue, joint manoeuvres and tactical procedures were the highlights of the war game that kicked off with a harbour phase on July 7 and concludes on Monday.

IANS

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SCO Meet: Terrorism an enemy of basic Human Rights, says Sushma Swaraj

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Beijing, April 24: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Tuesday said that terrorism is an enemy of the basic human rights and fight against it should also identify the countries that “encourage, support and finance” the menace and “provide sanctuary” to terror outfits.

Addressing at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Council of Foreign Ministers meeting, Swaraj stated: “We strongly believe that our fight against terrorism should not only seek to eliminate terrorists but should also identify and take strong measures against States that encourage, support and finance terrorism and provide sanctuary to terrorists and terror groups”.

“We have to work together to wipe-out this scourge from the face of the earth. In order to realise this objective, we must unite across our differences, strengthen our resolve and script an effective strategy against terror. We welcome the clarity shown by the SCO on terrorism from its inception”.

The meeting was attended by Foreign Ministers Wang Yi of China, Khawaja Muhammad Asif of Pakistan, Kairat Abdrakhmanov of Kazakhstan, Abdyldaev Erlan Bekeshovich of Kyrgyzstan, Sergey Lavrov of Russia, Sirodjidin Muhridinovich Aslov of Tajikistan, Abdulaziz Khafizovich Kamilov of Uzbekistan, and Secretary General of the SCO Rashid Alimov and others.

“We should also urgently resolve to establish Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism that India proposed more than two decades ago in the United Nations. We are determined to consistently strengthen cooperation within the SCO framework for comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security,” the Hindu quoted Swaraj as saying.

The Indian Minister also raised the issue of reforms at the United Nations Security Council saying “it is clear to many of us that the Security Council is increasingly unable, or sometimes unwilling, to respond to the security challenges of our times, with tragic consequences”.

Since 2008, the international community has carefully nurtured the ongoing Inter-Governmental Negotiations at the UN to take our discussions on UNSC reforms forward”, she said.

Expressing strong support for maintaining peace and order in Afghanistan, Swaraj called upon member countries to support the nation.

“Protectionism in all its forms should be rejected and efforts should be made to discipline measures that constitute barriers to trade”.

Swaraj further said “India is committed to working with the SCO to strengthen our economic and investment ties.

We believe that economic globalization should be more open, inclusive, equitable and balanced for mutual benefits,” the EAM added.

Earlier in a day,  Sushma Swaraj was welcomed by China’s foreign minister Wang Yi at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) ministerial meeting.

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also landed in Beijing earlier on Tuesday to attend preparatory meetings with the External Affairs Minister on the sidelines of the SCO meeting.

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Modi to launch Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan

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New Delhi, April 24: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday will launch the Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan in Madhya Pradesh’s Mandla district.

The event has been organised to mark National Panchayati Raj Day.

The objective of the scheme is to provide training, building infrastructure and stepping up initiatives for e-governance under the e-Panchayat Mission Mode Project.

Modi will also address Panchayati Raj from Mandla.

The Prime Minister will first inaugurate Aadi Mahotsava, a three-day program on the conservation of ancient Tribal culture and heritage at Ramnagar.

Following this, he will reveal a roadmap for the overall development of tribals during the next five years. Also, the Prime Minister will dedicate the local government Directory to the nation.

Modi will felicitate village Sarpanches which have achieved 100 percent smokeless kitchens, 100 percent vaccination under Mission Indradhanush and 100 percent electrification under Saubhagya Scheme.

Besides this, the Prime Minister will also unveil a plaque to mark the laying of foundation stone of an LPG bottling plant of Indian Oil Corporation at Maneri.

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Madhya Pradesh Home Minister blames Porn for rising rape cases

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Bhopal, April 24: As the country is stunned recent incidents of sexual violence against minors, Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Bhupendra Singh on Tuesday blamed pornographic websites for increasing number of child rape and molestation. 

Singh further noted that his government is considering to ban porn in Madhya Pradesh.

“We think the reason for rising number of child rape and molestation cases are porn. We are contemplating banning porn in Madhya Pradesh, will approach Centre in the matter,” Singh told news agency ANI.

As per the media reports, the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government has blocked 25 porn sites.

Singh’s remarks comes days after the brutal rape and murder of an infant baby girl in Indore on April 19. The infant was recovered from the basement of a building.

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