Sanjha Morcha

Understanding Maldives by Sandeep Dikshit

Understanding Maldives
GRAB THE MOMENT: China may have extended an olive branch all but in name when it spoke against making Maldives a flashpoint with India.

Sandeep Dikshit

THE state of affairs inside the Maldives does give a bad odour: A President locks up all his political opponents; then goes ahead and arrests the Supreme Court Chief Justice when he tries to set them free. And while the `democracy loving corner’ has itself in a twist, President Yameen caps his indiscretions by shuttering TV stations and imposing a state of emergency.Yameen has a different version where he casts himself as a victim of a willful and spiteful Supreme Court Chief Justice: The order releasing the nine individuals was given in the Chamber and not at a hearing; some of the convicted have exhausted the three tiers of court and a few cases were in appeal; the Chief Justice also tried to remove the President and the Attorney General but was overruled by a majority on both occasions. Despite being a honeymooner’s paradise, Maldives has had a very brief, four-year dalliance, with universal franchise. The fairness of all elections before and after the 2008 polls is a question mark. India saw no competition for Maldives’ affections till five years ago. But the fading years of the first democratically elected headed by Mohamed Nasheed saw him and the opposition bringing other countries into the equation.And today, India is no longer an option for all the parties involved in the scrimmage for power in Maldives. Nasheed, a EU favourite, is India’s designated man after Donald Trump phoned Narendra Modi and made common cause on the Maldives President’s disobedience of the Supreme Court’s orders. Then when South Block refused to host the Special Envoy of the Maldives President, it was clear that India had jettisoned its past tactic of maintaining ambiguity and preserving its options.Maldives, in the eyes of New Delhi-centred military-security experts, has recently turned unruly. But dissonance with almost all of India’s neighbours surfaced within a few months to a few years of emergence of post-colonial nation-states as they sought to resist India’s assumption of being the inheritor of the British colonial mandate for the region.In the early years, India could pull its weight in the region but not because of its military muscle. Barring Pakistan, other neighbours felt a sense of shared destiny with India in overcoming the handicaps of colonialism. Once the concept of nonalignment began losing its lustre, India began finding it difficult to manage its big brother pretensions.But the recent bad blood with so many neighbours has just one precedent. It recalls a similar security-heavy response in the neighbourhood by the Rajiv Gandhi government, another dispensation like the current one that was heady with its parliamentary majority. There was an armed confrontation with China, a simmering defence scandal, hair trigger alert with Pakistan, on the losing side in Afghanistan and more than a finger in a raging militancy in Sri Lanka. All these attempts at donning the hard hat with not much in the cupboard by way of trading muscle or long-range military capabilities to back the pretensions had a catastrophic impact on the country’s social fabric. The economic discontent provided the mobs for the disruptions caused by the Mandal and Ram Janmabhoomi agitations and finally we had the 1991 economic crises. It must be galling for the Indian security-military establishment to adjust itself to a new power discourse because of rise of Chinese influence in a region where mainland Indian civilisation’s historic cultural advantages were overlaid by two centuries of British India’s dominance. But China is increasingly coming into conversations on India’s security-related apprehensions in the neighourhood because the overlap of their strategic space has increased to now cover Afghanistan, and, of late, Maldives and Sri Lanka as well.But instead of focusing on creating dialogue and interaction architectures that support regionalism and economics, the Modi government has opted for the excitement of playing the Great Game against China in concert with mostly extra regional powers. The potential threat from India has not been lost on China. The consequence is that both are attempting a military encirclement of the other. The Indian proclivity to play a new Great Game may be influenced by notions of its influence and size. But it also reflects the Modi Government’s disinterest in reworking the grammar of dealing with neighbours.  Modi hasn’t had a decent conversation with most of the neighbours. While it is imperative to strengthen the bonds of technology, energy and security with distant countries, the Maldives setback should make the PMO think-tank realise that soon the Modi Government will no longer be able to politically gift-wrap tactically bold actions as strategic masterstrokes. The space for presenting tactical symbolism as strategic coherence may be narrowing. One example is the Lok Sabha Speaker calling off a meeting of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence which was to examine the claims made by a retired army officer about irreversible fortification of Chinese army positions on the Doklam plateau. That claim, if proven, will run counter to the Modi Government’s spin that India had emerged with honours intact after last year’s eye- ball to eye- ball security confrontation with China at the same site. China has now declared that Gwadar port in Pakistan will also function as a forward base for its navy. In due course, Hambantota port in Sri Lanka could follow suit. The Modi Government appears more immersed in aligning itself with the military-security objectives of outside powers. On Maldives, South Block was buoyed by the conversation between Trump and Modi. But the Trump administration does not play a zero sum game. On the same day, China’s main pointsman for foreign policy (and the gentleman who holds border talks with NSA Ajit Doval) was in Washington for in-depth discussions with his American counterpart. The Modi Government has been found wanting in making a calculated walk back from foreign policy positions that no longer yield any dividend. An opportunity may have just risen after Beijing offered a thinly disguised olive branch on Maldives. An  inability to change the grammar of dealing with neighbours is preventing us from accumulating the required power to make India tranquil, content, peaceful and happy. 

sandeep4731@gmail.com

 


CRPF jawan killed in gunfight after bid to attack camp foiled

CRPF jawan killed in gunfight after bid to attack camp foiled
Security at the encounter site in Srinagar. Tribune photo: Amin War

Srinagar, February 12

A gunfight broke out between security forces and militants after their attempt to strike a CRPF camp here was foiled, killing a paramilitary jawan, officials said on Monday.The militants holed up inside an abandoned house in Karan Nagar, in the heart of Srinagar city, after their early morning bid to storm into the camp was foiled, triggering the gunfight.The jawan, belonging to 49 Battalion of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), suffered injuries in the gunfight and died hours later, they said.Intermittent exchange of fire continued. There were also clashes between security forces and stone-pelting youths near the site, they said.

(Follow The Tribune on Facebook; and Twitter @thetribunechd)

The heavily armed militants tried to strike the CRPF camp, located very close to SMHS Hospital from where Lashkar-e-Taiba militant Naveed Jutt alias Abu Hanzala was freed from police custody by terrorists on February 6.“The sentry at the camp noticed two suspicious people at around 4.30 am, carrying backpacks and weapons. He challenged them and opened fire,” a spokesman of the CRPF said.The militants fled from the spot and took shelter in the abandoned house in residential area, the officials said.The incident comes two days after Jaish-e-Mohammad militants attacked an Army camp in Sunjwan area of Jammu, killing six people including five soldiers. PTI


SC stops proceedings against Major Aditya in Shopian firing case

SC stops proceedings against Major Aditya in Shopian firing case
The father of Army Major Aditya Kumar had moved the Supreme Court seeking quashing of the FIR against his son.

Satya Prakash

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 12

The Supreme Court on Monday stayed all proceedings in connection with an FIR registered by the Jammu and Kashmir Police naming Major Aditya Kumar as an accused with regard to Shopian firing incident.

A three-judge Bench headed by the Chief Justice of India — which had on February 9 agreed to hear the matter — also directed that no coercive measures shall be taken against Major Aditya Kumar.

The Bench issued notice to the Centre and Jammu and Kashmir Government and asked the petitioner — Major Aditya Kumar’s father Lt Colonel Karamveer Singh to serve a copy of his petition to the office of the Attorney General to enable him represent the Union of India.

The order came on a petition filed by Major Aditya Kumar’s father seeking quashing of the January 27 FIR against his son.

The petitioner was represented by senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi while Attorney General appeared for the Centre.

Besides quashing of the FIR, Petitioner Lt Colonel Karamveer Singh has sought guidelines to protect soldiers’ rights and adequate compensation for them. Two civilians were killed when Army personnel fired at a stone-pelting mob in Ganovpora village in Shopian, prompting the chief minister to order an inquiry into the incident.

The FIR was registered against the personnel of 10, Garhwal unit of the Army, including Major Kumar, under the Sections 302 (murder) and 307 (attempt to murder) of the Ranbir Penal Code.

The Army had on February 1 presented its version of events contradicting the police FIR. It reiterated that soldiers opened fire on protesters in “self-defence” to prevent imminent lynching of an officer, snatching of weapons by villagers and burning of the Army vehicles.

The petitioner contended that FIR had been illegally filed against Major Aditya Kumar.

In his petition, Lt Colonel Karamveer Singh has contended his son had been “wrongly and arbitrarily” named in the FIR as the February 27 incident related to an Army convoy on bona fide military duty in an area under the AFSPA, which was isolated by an “unruly and deranged” mob pelting stones causing damage to military vehicles.

“The petitioner is constrained to file the present writ petition for quashing of FIR, directly before this court in view of the extremely hostile situation on the ground, whereby an FIR has been registered by local police against the son of the petitioner, who is a service Army officer and was performing bona fide duties as directed by the Union of India,” read his petition. He urged the top court to lay down guidelines to protect rights of soldiers and adequate compensation so that no Army personnel is harassed by initiation of criminal proceedings for bonafide actions in exercise of their duties. He also demanded registration of FIR against those involved in terrorist activities which caused damage to government property.

The petitioner said the intention of his son — a Major in the 10 Garhwal Rifles — was to save Army personnel and property and the fire was inflicted “only to impair and provide a safe escape from a savage and violent mob engaged in terrorist activity”.

The unruly mob was asked to disperse and not to obstruct military in performing their duties and not to damage government property but when the situation reached beyond control, a warning was issued to disperse, the plea said.

As the unruly behaviour of the “unlawful assembly” reached peak and when they got hold of a Junior Commissioned Officer and were in the process of lynching him to death, warning shots were fired fire to disperse the violent mob and protect public property, the petitioner submitted.

 

Singh also referred to last year’s incident of a mob lynching of DSP Mohd Ayub Pandith to highlight the situation in the troubled state and the condition in which Army officials were working to control violent mobs in Kashmir.


RSS can prepare an army within 3 days: Mohan Bhagwat

RSS can prepare an army within 3 days: Mohan Bhagwat
RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat. File photo

Muzaffarpur, February 11  Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat on Sunday said the organisation has the ability to prepare an “army” to fight for the country within three days, if such a situation arises.The RSS chief said this while addressing the workers at Zila school ground on the last day of his six-day visit of Muzaffarpur.“Sangh will prepare military personnel within three days which the Army would do in 6-7 months. This is our capability. Swayamsewak will be ready to take on the front if the country faces such a situation and Constitution permits to do so),” Bhagwat said.Sangh is neither a military nor a para military organisation, rather it is like a “parivarik sangathan” (family organisation) where discipline is practised like the Army, he said adding that workers are always happily ready to make supreme sacrifice for their country.Bhagwat exhorted the RSS workers to set an example of good conduct in their personal, family and social life. — PTI


Military Ethical Leadership Deteriorating by Col RC Patiyal

Col RC Patiyal | Date:07 Mar , 2016 0 Comments

Col RC Patiyal

is a veteran who served in the NTRO as Chief Editor OSINT & Dy Director NTRO Training Centre and the NSCS as a Senior Defence Specialist.

The safety, honour and welfare of the country come first, always and every time.
The honour, welfare and comfort of the men you command came next.
Your own ease, comfort and safety come last always and every time.

Indian military leadership over the period has matured into  ..
Read more at:
http://www.indiandefencereview.com/military-ethical-leadership-deteriorating/


Shopian firing case: SC restrains J&K police from taking coercive steps against Major Aditya

OFINDIA.COM | Updated: Feb 12, 2018, 13:37 IST

HIGHLIGHTS

  • The Supreme Court today restrained J&K police from taking any coercive step against Major Aditya Kumar who was booked for firing on stone pelters
  • The apex court directed the J&K government to file response in two weeks to the petition filed by Lt Col Karamveer Singh, father of Maj Aditya Kumar, seeking quashing of the Shopian FIR

(File photo)

Shopian firing case: SC restrains J&K police from taking coercive steps against Major Aditya

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court today restrained J&K police from taking any coercive step against Major Aditya Kumar who was booked for firing on stone pelters in Jammu and Kashmir‘s Shopian.

This means neither Maj Aditya Kumar can be called for interrogation nor he can be arrested by the J&K police in the Shopian incident FIR.

Today, the apex court directed the J&K government to file response in two weeks to the petition filed by Lt Col Karamveer Singh, father of Maj Aditya Kumar, seeking quashing of the Shopian FIR.

SC also asked attorney general K K Venugopal to assist the court in the case and specify the Centre’s stand on the issue of lodging of FIRs against army men by state police in incidents relating of operation.

Earlier, the plea, filed by Vineet Dhanda, an advocate, had said that a direction be given to the Jammu and Kashmir government not to withdraw the cases against 9,730 people allegedly involved in stone-pelting incidents and show seriousness in the cases registered against the offenders or stone pelters in the Kashmir Valley.

The petition was mentioned before a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud which said it would hear it on February 12.

It also sought a direction for an inquiry by a sitting high court judge into the FIR registered against personnel of 10 Garhwal Rifles, including Major Aditya Kumar, under sections 302 (murder) and 307 (attempt to murder) of the Ranbir Penal Code at Shopian police station in Kashmir on January 27.

It said that such cases be allowed to reach to the natural conclusion after trial.The plea said that serious efforts by the Army have shattered the morale of terrorists, who are now using the Valley’s youths to attack defence personnel with stones.

It said given the unabated terror activities in the Valley, the Army has to safeguard itself.

“The question of the morale of the Army is very important. False cases are registered against Army personnel, which results in serious demoralisation,” it said.

(With inputs from agencies)

In Video: Shopian firing: Victory for armed forces as SC stays FIR against Major Aditya


PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO SOLDIERS

To,

             The President of India,

            The Supreme Commander.

            Rashtarpati Bhawan. New Delhi.

 PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS IS AN OFFENCE  SINCE 1960 – WHAT ABOUT CRUELTY TO SOLDIERS ON MILITARY DUTY IN J&K?

 Sir,

             President of India as the Supreme Commander & the Armed Forces are under oath of allegiance to the Constitution of India; continue to silently suffer ‘cruelty’ in J&K, when it is an offence against Animals but for some unknown reasons, Soldiers continue to suffer, not objected by RM or COAS, except their Children or Parents of the Soldiers.

  1. Is RM not responsible to prevent cruelty to Soldiers? Fundamental Duty of all Citizens including Military Officers Article 51A is to bring to the notice of concerned authority, if something is going wrong.

3,         Why Rajya Sainik Board of J&K / Kendra Sainik Board of MoD ares keeping quite when Welfare of AFs is on ‘concurrent list’?

  1. As a responsible War Veterans request the President of India to protect Soldiers from cruelty of Stone Pelting by issuing Presidential Order please since Political Leaders have failed to en-act Law in this respect.

Dated 9 Feb 2018.

   Brig HS Ghuman, SC, Retd.

# 1043 Sector 71, SAS Nagar.

Punjab, Pin 160071.


Facing Flak, MoD Asks Finance Ministry to Remove Education Fee Cap for Martyrs’ Kids

On July 1 last year, the government had issued an order saying the assistance under the scheme cannot exceed Rs 10,000 per month, triggering widespread discontent among all the three services

Facing Flak, MoD Asks Finance Ministry to Remove Education Fee Cap for Martyrs' Kids

New Delhi: The Defence Ministry has requested the Finance Ministry to remove the cap of Rs 10,000 per month on educational assistance given to children of martyrs or those disabled in action, official sources said today.

On July 1 last year, the government had issued an order saying the assistance under the scheme cannot exceed Rs 10,000 per month, triggering widespread discontent among all the three services.

The Chiefs of Staff Committee (CoSC), comprising the Army, Navy and the Air Force chiefs, had also written to the defence ministry requesting it to remove the cap. Under the scheme, which was initially rolled out in 1972, tuition fee of children of martyrs or those disabled in action were completely waived in schools, colleges and other professional educational institutions.The defence minister has requested the finance ministry to remove the cap. We are hoping for a favourable decision,” a defence ministry source said.

Approximately 250 students were affected during the current financial year following the government’s decision to cap the assistance, according to officials.

Replying to a question in the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre last month had said that the annual saving on account of putting the cap would be Rs 3.20 crore per annum. He had said the highest amount drawn has been reported to be Rs 18.95 lakh per annum per student.


7th Pay Commission: Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman Requests Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to Remove Education Fee Cap For Martyrs’ Children

The savings have been reported to be Rs 3.20 crore approximately. The highest amount drawn has been reported to be Rs 18.95 lakh per annum per student,” said Bhamre.

New Delhi, February 10: Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday requested Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to remove the education fee cap under 7th Pay Commission for children of soldiers who lost their lives while serving the country.

Earlier in January, the government made it clear that there will be no immediate review of its decision to put a cap of Rs 10,000 per month on educational assistance given to children of martyrs or of those disabled in action.

Replying to a question in the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre said the educational assistance has been capped as per the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission and those demanding its review have been communicated about the government’s position on it.

Indian Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba wrote to Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman requesting the government to look into it s prior order that limits education reimbursement to the children.

“Reply has been sent (to them) stating that the combined amount of tuition fee and hostel charges has been capped at Rs 10,000 per month in accordance with the recommendations of the 7th Central Pay Commission as accepted by the government,” Bhamre said.

Under the scheme, rolled out in 1972, tuition fee of children of martyrs or those disabled in action were completely waived in schools, colleges and other professional educational institutions.

However, on July 1, the government had issued an order capping the amount to Rs 10,000 per month, triggering discontentment among all the three services.

The Chiefs of Staff Committee (CoSC), comprising the Army, Navy and the Air Force chiefs, had written to the defence ministry requesting the issue to remove the cap.

Approximately 250 students have been reported to be affected during current financial year following the government’s decision to cap the assistance, Bhamre said, adding that “the allowance shall go up by 25 percent each time DA rises by 50 per cent.”

He said that out of a total 2,679 students during the year 2017-18 (up to December 27, 2017), 193 students have been reported to be drawing more than the capped amount.

“The savings have been reported to be Rs 3.20 crore approximately. The highest amount drawn has been reported to be Rs 18.95 lakh per annum per student,” said Bhamre.