1.“Despite the efficacy of conventional terrorism reduced, the internet enabled terrorism emerged as a biggest threat to the country”. In this context, how far indigenization of technology and software system addresses cyber terrorism? Discuss. (12.02.2017)
The traditional concepts and methods of terrorism have taken new dimensions, which are more destructive and deadly in nature. The expression “cyber terrorism” includes an intentional negative and harmful use of the information technology for producing destructive and harmful effects to the property, whether tangible or intangible, of others.
For instance, hacking of a computer system and then deleting the useful and valuable business information of the rival competitor is a part and parcel of cyber terrorism.
The law dealing with cyber terrorism is, however, not adequate to meet the precarious intentions of these cyber terrorists and requires a rejuvenation in the light and context of the latest developments all over the world.
The laws of India have to take care of the problems originating at the international level because the Internet, through which these terrorist activities are carried out, recognizes no boundaries.
Thus, a cyber-terrorist can collapse the economic structure of a country from a place with which India may not have any reciprocal arrangements, including an “extradition treaty”. The only safeguard in such a situation is to use the latest technology to counter these problems. Thus, a good combination of the latest security technology and a law dealing with cyber terrorism is the need of the hour.
Importance of Indigenization of technology:
- To increase its technological capability in the area of homeland security, the government is considering to establishing a centre for focused research on the latest electronic equipment, which can be indigenously manufactured.
- The specific areas where the research could be performed include image processing, video analytics, communication systems, and sensors for explosive detection, robotics, and autonomous vehicle such as unmanned aerial vehicles.
- The term “indigenization of technology” goes beyond just manufacturing the item based on drawings and materials supplied by a foreign manufacturer (OEM).
- Here, the local manufacturer is expected to understand the technology underlying the product or part, so as to be able to change, modify, improve or re-design the item as and when he likes. Most of the ‘technology transfer’ that takes place in the Indian defence and aerospace sector, only relates to the manufacture of the item within the country and therefore concerns only the technology involved in manufacturing.
- The foreign manufacturer rarely provides any insight into the technology for design or modifications of the part.
The problem of cyber terrorism is multilateral having varied facets and dimensions. Its solution requires rigorous application of energy and resources. It must be noted that law is always seven steps behind the technology. This is so because we have a tendency to make laws when the problem reaches at its zenith. We do not appreciate the need of the hour till the problem takes a precarious dimension. At that stage it is always very difficult, if not impossible, to deal with that problem. The legislature can provide its assistance to the benign objective of elimination of cyber terrorism by enacting appropriate statutes dealing with cyber terrorism
2.Recently, the supreme court of India ordered to few Internet giants to delete sex determination advertisements with the concern of reduction of sex ratio in the country. Do you think that the existing legislative provisions are not effective? If yes, what are the other viable alternative would you suggest? (17.02.2017)
Prenatal sex discernment is the prenatal testing for discerning the sex of a fetus before birth. Potential applications of prenatal sex discernment are
- A complement to specific gene testing for monogenic disorders, which can be very useful for genetic diseases with sex linkage
- Ability to prepare for any sex-dependent aspects of parenting
- Sex selection, which after preimplantation genetic diagnosis may be performed by selecting only embryos of the preferred sex, or, after post-implantation methods by performing sex-selective abortion depending on the test result and personal preference.
Two laws that prohibit the sex selection of a fetus in India are the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971, as amended in 2002, and the Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques (Regulation and Prevention of Misuse) Act, 1994, as amended in 2002.
The former Act prohibits abortion except only in certain qualified situations, while the latter prohibits the sex selection of a fetus with a view towards aborting it.
The laws of India do not permit abortion. The Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971 Act, which prohibits abortion, was enacted with a view towards containing the size of the family. However, in some cases the desire for a small family may have outweighed the desire for a child of a specific gender, leading to abortions where the sex of the fetus was different from that desired by the family.
- Severe legal sanctions are difficult to enforce because ultrasounds and abortions are typically done at separate clinics, or in the private sector, which is largely unregulated.
- Even in the public sector, poor salaries for doctors, underfunding of hospitals and dependence on user fees have led some providers and clinics to offer the illegal services
- Enforcement is also difficult, according to the United Nations Population Fund, because communicating the sex of a fetus can be done discreetly, even without words, making it “extremely difficult” to catch offenders.
Instead of making stringent laws relying on targeted public awareness and education campaigns could be better option. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare of India has targeted education and media advertisements to reach clinics and medical professionals to increase awareness. The Indian Medical Association has undertaken efforts to prevent prenatal sex selection by giving its members Beti Bachao (save the daughter) badges during its meetings and conferences.
3.Even though human rights are universal, human being violation in Jammu and Kashmir must be resolved internally in India-Comment. (23.02.2017)
Kashmir is a unique land for India, which can be acknowledged in Article 370 of the Indian Constitution. There are two standpoints on the definition of Kashmir. One from the point of view that it is a land acquired by the territory of India and, second that it is the people of Kashmir who holds the history and culture of the valley; and here is where the unrest lies, some of the reasons of which are:-
- Overpowering presence of security forces which culminates the sense of threat among people than the sense of protection.
- Draconian Law like AFSPA which gives right to kill with impunity makes people feel oppressive, humiliating and which is unacceptable.
- Lack of infrastructure and lack of education, with other facilities exposes the youth to get infected by the unwanted elements.
- High censorship detach the youth with the right information due to which they get easily misguided.
- Political intervention which is highly ambitious focusing on the territory rather than being people friendly.
From the above points we infer that issue is more internal which needs a broad and clear conciliation among government and people.
Measures taken by government:
Now, the Government of India has decided to take the following measures-
- Appointing a panel to look for alternatives to pellet guns so that any undue harmed to people is avoided
- Plan of action for dialogue with all stakeholders including Pakistan and separatist leaders to arrive at concrete solution.
- These measures may soothe the conditions in short term. However, in long term, Government of India will have to address the root cause which the developmental agenda. Some of the measures should include-
- Promotingeco-tourism and forest based industries to provide livelihood to people
- Faster development of Atal Setu to improve connectivity with other states of India
- Expediting the Comprehensive Integrated Border management System to counter infiltration attempts
- Propagandizing the policy of GoI to people of Kashmir in order to defeat ideology of separatists
4.The recent Maoists attack in Chhattisgarh argued that counter insurgency operation by security forces against Maoists undermined by poor intelligence, alertness of security forces and the absence of multilayered political strategy. Critically examine. (16.03.2017)
The Naxalite–Maoist insurgency is an ongoing conflict between Maoist groups, known as Naxalites or Naxals, and the Indian government.The Maoist threat has often been described as India’s biggest internal security challenge.The Left wing extremist groups are restless because of the unprecedented success of the forces against them. In 2016, forces have achieved success against the Left wing extremists in many states, especially in Chhattisgarh. At present, nearly 15 states are affected to varying degrees.
The movement finds broad appeal among people suffering the ills of under-development, due to the fact that a people’s democratic revolution designed to fight exploitation remains the selling point of Maoist ideology.
- The last two decades, most state governments have failed to understand the nuances of combating this Maoist type of insurgency and therefore have attempted piecemeal solutions that have brought partial and temporary results.
- To poorly organized security forces and governmental mechanisms that are ill-equipped to execute development programs and projects.
- Avoid large-scale kinetic actions against lower-cadre Maoist operatives and instead target the higher leadership in the centralized hierarchy. Well-trained Army Special Forces could be used to conduct these surgical, small-footprint strikes.
- Embark on a large-scale, mass media–driven propaganda campaign that highlights the caste, class, gender, and religious biases of the Maoists to tarnish their narrative and create feuds within the organization. These rifts can also be exploited for intelligence gathering and infiltration into the organization.
- Because the Red Corridor spans 15 states, achieving coherence in plans and efficiency in resource management requires a centralized approach from the Indian government. Individual state governments, if left to them, are likely to be driven by local politics and to treat the Maoist menace as a local law and order problem.
- The strategy of “clear, hold, and develop” has been adopted in spurts in the past by many state governments, but never as a sustained effort.
To focus political will and force the decision-making that is key to countering the Maoist insurgency in the long run.
5.“Recently, India and Britain aimed to strengthen their defence and security cooperation to effectively deal with terrorism and extremism”. Discuss. (12.04.2017)
The UK-India relationship is strong, with a shared history going back centuries, and now a shared vision of the future. Much of the later half of the 20th century, India was perceived by the West to be closer to USSR and hence a natural distrust developed. India is the third largest foreign investor in the UK, and the UK is the largest investor in India within the G20. There are many bilateral trade agreements between the two nations designed to strengthen ties. The Joint Economic and Trade Committee (JETCO) was inaugurated in New Delhi aimed at boosting two-way bilateral investments. The growth of India’s multinational companies contributed greatly to UK’s business and economy. As of 2014, Indian companies in the UK generated over 19 billion pounds.
There is always strong economic and financial engagement, growing defence and international security partnership and close people to people linkages with UK. India appreciates the UK’s support for its candidature for a permanent seat in the UN Security Council.
- Deepening of economic and strategic partnership between the two countries, which was crystallised in the joint statement entitled “India-UK Strategic Partnership looking forward to a renewed engagement: Vision for the decade ahead.”
- The two countries emphasized working together on a contemporary and forward-looking global partnership to promote peace, security and prosperity of the two countries and act as a force for good in the world
- Deepen Defence and International Security Partnership to deepen cooperation across the spectrum, including on countering terrorism, radicalization, violent extremism and cyber security.
- Britain is already investing over £160m across 75 start-up enterprises which would create jobs and deliver critical services across several States in India.
Britain joined hands with India to “identify, hold accountable and take strong measures against all those who encourage, support and finance terrorism, provide sanctuary to terrorists and terror groups, and falsely extol their virtues.” This formulation is significant as Britain was seen in India as not taking a strong stand on the Pakistan-origin terrorism in the aftermath of the Uri attack as it chose to focus on Pakistan being a victim of terrorism.
Taking a strategic view of their relationship, the two countries also pitched for collaboration in the world’s trouble spots, including Afghanistan. In an important formulation which will be watched closely in China, the two sides underscored the importance of maintaining the legal order for the seas and oceans based on the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and urged states to respect UNCLOS and refrain from activities which prejudice the peace, good order and security of the oceans, a veiled critique of China’s rejection of the Hague tribunal’s order on South China Sea.
6.”After the recent attack by Naxal in Chhattisgarh the government decided that the Anti –Maoist strategy will be reviewed and the Centre and State government will work together to take up the challenge in the future”. In this context, discuss the various measures taken by government to counter left-wing extremism in the country. (26.04.2017)
The Naxalite–Maoist insurgency is an ongoing conflict between Maoist groups, known as Naxals, and the Indian government. The conflict in its present form began after the 2004 formation of the CPI (Maoist), a rebel group composed of the People’s War Group and the Maoist Communist Centre. In 2005 talks between the Andhra Pradesh state government and the CPI-Maoists broke down and the rebels accused authorities of not addressing their demands for a written truce, release of prisoners and redistribution of land. The ongoing conflict has taken place over a vast territory around half of India’s 29 states with hundreds of people being killed annually in clashes between the CPI-Maoists and the government every year since 2005.
Naxalism in India:
- The Naxalites control territory throughout Bihar, Jharkhand and Andhra Pradesh states and claim to be supported by the poorest of the rural population, especially the Adivasis.
- The Naxalites have frequently targeted tribal, police and government workers in what they say is a fight for improved land rights and more jobs for neglected agricultural labourers and the poor.
- The Naxalites claim that they are following a strategy of rural rebellion similar to a protracted people’s war against the government.
Measures taken by Government:
Maoists had growing appeal among a large section of Indian society, including tribal communities, the rural poor as well as sections of the intelligentsia and the youth. Indian government has adopted both violent and peaceful strategies to tackle threat posed by naxals.
- Indian central government announced a new nationwide initiative, to be called the “Integrated Action Plan” (IAP) for broad, coordinated operations aimed at dealing with the Naxalite problem in all affected states, namely Karnataka, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Jharkhand, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal.
- This plan included funding for grass-roots economic development projects in Naxalite-affected areas, as well as increased special police funding for better containment and reduction of Naxalite influence.
- To attract youth in naxal affected areas, government announced that it would employ large number of youth from naxal affected regions in government jobs.
- Apart from ensuring the immediate appointment of panchayat development officers and as many junior engineers, the centre has drawn u a blueprint to provide jobs to three lakh youth in the 60 left wing extremist affected districts in the country.
- For better implementation of the MGNREGA each Panchayat appoints one panchayat developmental officer and a junior engineer for a period of 10 years from within the district. Nonresident would not be considered for these posts.
- To ensure availability of potable water have been allotted for those 60 districts.
- The Security Related Expenditure (SRE) Scheme of the Government of India provides ex-gratia payment of Rs.1 lakh to the family of civilians killed and Rs. 3 lakh to family of security personnel killed due to naxal attacks.
Naxalism is an internal security matter and is not just a law and order problem also – it has grown into a big headache for both people and government. But its roots lie in deep discontent that apathy of government bred towards poor tribes of these regions. Only through addressing those problems it is possible to stop the further spread of left wing extremism. Whenever naxals indulge in violence, and obstruct development works being implemented, government must deal with sternly but as home ministry warned officials, without violating standard operation methods.
7.“For the first time government has proposed a law for providing universal social security to all workers with certain exceptions”. In this context, give an account to the current status of social security benefits and the discuss the significance of recently proposed social security law in the country. (14.05.2017)
In consonance to the welfares nature of Indian state, Indian govt. has implemented various social security to ensure food, livelihood, economic and health security to the population. Government is mulling over ushering right based social security to replace it with current employment based. Anybody joining the workforce shall be entitled to social security including the domestic workers.
Social security programs in existing format:
- Food security: under NFSA, MDM, ICDS and antodya aan yojana, food security is provided to every vulnerable category and age group according to statistics of world’s food reports
- Livelihood security: MGREGA is provided as legal right to unskilled workers to guaranteed work of 100 days per year.
- Economic security: PMJDY and allied schemes under financial inclusion programme aimed to provide savings instrument and infrastructural support for DBT transfers.
- Health security: like AABY, govt. recently attached various insurance schemes for unorganized sector and entrepreneurs to Aadhar linked bank account.
Significance of Proposed Right based social Security:
- Inclusiveness: Domestic workers are left out of the social security net and the current step is an important move to extend social security benefits to them in addition to the existing employees.
- Gender Sensitive: Majority of the domestic workers are women. Social security shall go a long way in empowering women
- Help to prevent people falling back in poverty trap because of high health expenditure.
Government should take on board all the stakeholders while policy making and announcing schemes just to pacify populism and international conventions (ILO Convention) should be checked by CSO and NGOs so as to ensure the real benefit of such schemes reach the beneficiary.
8.“India needs a framework that allows a government to shut down the internet in only the most rare cases rather than as a first response”. In the light of the statement, evaluate the statement with recent events in the country. (10.07.2017)
An internet shutdown compromises our democratic freedoms and should only be allowed in the most rare cases, rather than as a first response.
The internet literacy and penetration increase, the use of the internet for mischief and malice will also increase. But the internet’s increasing centrality in India, both social and economic, means that the current response of shutting it down every time there is a law and order problem is untenable for several reasons.
The internet shutdowns are not particularly effective—people always find other ways to communicate, and studies have shown that such censorship in times of political unrest actually leads to more violent uprisings as the information void fuels uncertainty and causes panic. Second, the rising economic cost of such shutdowns also needs to be factored in.
One may argue that just as there are reasonable restrictions on fundamental Constitutional rights, and existing laws allow for curbs on individual freedoms in the interest of the larger good, the state is also within its rights to restrict internet access in troubled times so as to maintain peace and security. This in turns feeds into the larger debate of protecting civil liberties while also ensuring public safety and security that is happening the world over.
But perhaps a solution can be found in renegotiating our law enforcement approaches in keeping with the changing times and technologies.
9.“The recent agitation for a separate statehood for Gorkhaland viewed more seriously after long period of time”. In the light of the statement, what are the reasons for recent agitations? Do you thing that GTA failed to address the aspirations of the people? Discuss. (17.07.2017)
The Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) called for an indefinite shutdown to seek a separate Gorkhaland state, which continues till date.
Darjeeling has been on the boil ever since the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress (TMC) government decided to make Bengali language compulsory in schools. The decision infuriated the native Nepali-speaking Gorkha population in north Bengal, as the demand for Gorkhaland gained renewed traction.
GTA: Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) is a semi-autonomous administrative body for the Darjeeling and Kalimpong hills in West Bengal, India. GTA replaced the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council, which was formed in 1988 and administered the Darjeeling hills for 23 years. After three years of agitation for a state of Gorkhaland led by GJM, the GJM reached an agreement with the state government to form a semi-autonomous body to administer the Darjeeling hills. A bill for the creation of GTA was passed in the West Bengal Legislative Assembly on 2 September 2011.
GTA is a failure: The state government has not kept any of its promises and it is trying to run a parallel administration in the hills. That is why Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) is taking to the streets for a separate state again. The GTA has never resolved any of the problem as it lacks the mandate.
10.“It is argued that India needs national legislation and binding agreements with other nations regarding privacy and data protection”. Critically examine. (06.08.2017)
India needs laws on privacy and data protection. The chances of data breaches taking place from some node with lax security or the other of an interconnected mesh of nodes are growing by the day.
Need for legislation related to privacy and data protection:
- There is a growing cry to legislate data residency, the requirement that data on Indians should necessarily reside within India. While it is vital to protect personal data, it is futile to imagine that mere location of servers in a particular geography will take the data stored on them beyond external scrutiny. Hence, the total control the date should be rests with the host country and not with any other nations.
- To formulate intelligent and enforceable domestic data protection rules and allows data portability only to other jurisdictions that offer similar protection and guarantees of protection to the data of Indians as well. Thus enhancing the mutual cooperation with neighbours and others.
- Intelligent policy formulation, after public debate involving all stakeholders, and enforcement of norms brook no delay.
- India has the potential to process much of the world’s data and cannot afford to be locked out of this opportunity because of its own restrictive policies on data mobility.
- Advances in artificial intelligence depend on access to all kinds of data, from which algorithms learn. India needs wide debate on global best practices in data protection, leading to firm policy.
- The international community should come together and give all policy and protection matter to ITU rather leaving to handful of countries.
- The hacking by a nation on other nation should be stopped as per the evolved international guidelines evolved as soon as possible.