SECURE SYNOPSIS: 01 March 2017
NOTE: Please remember that following ‘answers’ are NOT ‘model answers’. They are NOT synopsis too if we go by definition of the term. What we are providing is content that both meets demand of the question and at the same time gives you extra points in the form of background information.
General Studies – 1;
Topic: History of the world
1) What were the causes and consequences of 1994 Rwandan Genocide? Critically examine how did international players respond to this Genocide. (200 Words)
The Rwandan genocide, also known as the genocide against the Tutsi, was a genocidal mass slaughter of Tutsi in Rwanda by members of the Hutu majority government. An estimated more than 800,000 Rwandans were killed during the 100-day period from April 7 to mid-July 1994, constituting as many as 70% of the Tutsi and 20% of Rwanda’s total population.
Causes of the Rwandan Genocide-
Part of German East Africa from 1894 to 1918, Rwanda came under the League of Nation’s mandate of Belgium after World War I, along with neighbouring Burundi. Rwanda’s colonial period, during which the ruling Belgians favoured the minority Tutsis over the Hutus, exacerbated the tendency of the few to oppress the many, creating a legacy of tension that exploded into violence even before Rwanda gained its independence. A Hutu revolution in 1959 forced as many as 300,000 Tutsis to flee the country, making them an even smaller minority. By early 1961, victorious Hutus had forced Rwanda’s Tutsi monarch into exile and declared the country a republic. After a U.N. referendum that same year, Belgium officially granted independence to Rwanda in July 1962.
Ethnically motivated violence continued in the years following independence. In 1973, a military group installed Major General Juvenal Habyarimana, a moderate Hutu, in power. He was elected president under a new constitution ratified in 1978 and reelected in 1983 and 1988, when he was the sole candidate. In 1990, forces of the Rwandese Patriotic Front (RPF), consisting mostly of Tutsi refugees, invaded Rwanda from Uganda. A ceasefire in these hostilities led to negotiations between the government and the RPF in 1992. In August 1993, Habyarimana signed an agreement at Arusha, Tanzania, calling for the creation of a transition government that would include the RPF. This power-sharing agreement angered Hutu extremists, who would soon take swift and horrible action to prevent it.
Thus causes could be summed up in following manner-
- After World War 1, Rwanda came under the League of Nations mandate of Belgium during which the ruling Belgians favored the minority Tutsis over the Hutu majority. It led to widening communal rift between Tutsis and Hutus.
- Rise in oppression of minority Tutsi by Hutu, creating a legacy of tension and violence even before Rwanda gained its independence.
- Hutu revolution in 1959 forced thousands of Tutsis to flee the country.
- Ethnically motivated violence continued against Tutsi even after independence in 1962.
- Immediate cause – signing of an Arusha agreement by Habyarimana and thereafter killing of moderate Hutu leader Habyarimana of Rwandan government on Apr 6, 1994 in a plane crash.
Consequences of the Rwandan Genocide-
- Around 70% of the Tutsi community and 20% of the Rwandan population was wiped out in a single stroke of genocide.
- After the genocide serous refugee crisis and got created. The genocide and widespread slaughter of Rwandans ended when the Tutsi-backed and heavily armedRwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) led by Paul Kagame took control of the country. In response, more than 2 million people, nearly all Hutus, fled Rwanda, crowding into refugee camps in the Congo (then called Zaire) and other neighboring countries. The camps were crowded and squalid, and thousands of refugees died in disease epidemics, including cholera and dysentery.
- The infrastructure and economy of the country had suffered greatly during the genocide. Many buildings were uninhabitable, and the former regime had carried with them all currency and moveable assets when they fled the country.Human resources were also severely depleted, with over 40% of the population having been killed or fled. Many of the remainder were traumatised: most had lost relatives, witnessed killings or participated in the genocide.
As reports of the genocide spread, the Security Council voted in mid-May to supply a more robust force, including more than 5,000 troops. By the time that force arrived in full, however, the genocide had been over for months. In a separate French intervention approved by the U.N., French troops entered Rwanda from Zaire in late June. In the face of the RPF’s rapid advance, they limited their intervention to a “humanitarian zone” set up in south-western Rwanda, saving tens of thousands of Tutsi lives but also helping some of the genocide’s plotters–allies of the French during the Habyarimana administration–to escape.
In the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide, many prominent figures in the international community lamented the outside world’s general obliviousness to the situation and its failure to act in order to prevent the atrocities from taking place.
In October 1994, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), was established with the mandate to prosecute the crime of genocide. In 1995, the ICTR began indicting and trying a number of higher-ranking people for their role in the Rwandan genocide; the process was made more difficult because the whereabouts of many suspects were unknown. The trials continued over the next decade and a half, including the 2008 conviction of three former senior Rwandan defense and military officials for organizing the genocide.
General Studies – 2
Topic: India and its neighborhood- relations.
2) Discuss the significance of recent developments in India-China cooperation on Afghanistan. (200 Words)
Recently China initiated the special talks by inviting Indian officials who deals with Afghanistan and proposed a “joint development project” for the revival of Afghanistan’s economy and polity. In Afghanistan, where both China and India see potential for investment and share concerns over the rise of radicalism and terrorism, there are many avenues for cooperation.
Significance of the recent developments-
- The talks between India and China may result into thaw between two countries which have seen rise in tension in 2016 over the issues like blocking India’s bid to NSG, vetoing the resolution of declaring Masood Azhar as international terrorist etc.
- The talks may open the way for negotiations on boundary disputes, India’s NSG bid, problem of trade deficit etc.
- The talks encourage the conclusion that China is unwilling to have its options cramped by Pakistan’s reservations about India’s role in Afghanistan.
- The Ministry of External Affairs says there was broad agreement on trade and economic ties, with Chinese officials reportedly praising India’s measures to welcome investment and facilitate visas for closer business ties. It may further boost the prospects of trade and commerce between both countries and reduce the concerns of India about anti-dumping issues.
- In the recent time Asia has witnessed regional rivalry between India and China with other nations supporting one either two. The coming together of two great Asiatic powers will surely benefit whole region in diffusing the regional tension.
- The cooperation between India and China would work in favor of war torn Afghanistan in bringing peace and stability. And prevent another nation into getting trapped into Syria like situation.
While there are efforts being done for cooperation between the two nations, there are still some concerns which obstruct this process.
- India is wary of China’s CPEC project which runs through Pak occupied Kashmir. India has protested against this project that challenges its sovereignty.
- China has been vocal for any activity of Tibetian spiritual leader Dalai Lama and it has recently protested against Dalai Lama’s visit to Arunachal Pradesh.
- China is still reluctant to compromise on border issues and come to equal terms to India.
- India is worried about aggressive entry of China into Indian ocean through projects like Gwadar port, Chittagong etc.
The recent talks between India and China needs to be evolved and sustained for any strong outcomes. It would be too early to conclude any significant results out of single talks.
Topic: Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure
3) What are the key components of the 2015 Framework Agreement on the Naga issue? Critically examine how this agreement has impacted the northeastern region. (200 Words)
3) What are the key components of the 2015 Framework Agreement on the Naga issue? Critically examine how this agreement has impacted the northeastern region.
Introduction:- The British annexed Assam in 1826, and in 1881, the Naga Hills too became part of British India. The first sign of Naga resistance was seen in the formation of the Naga Club in 1918. The issue then recently settled with government coming with Naga Peace Acoord. 2015 Framwork Agreement of the government with NSCN – IM laid down a framework for recognizing the needs of NSCN- IM & other groups and resolve issues of the Naga issue amicably.
What did the NSCN (IM) want?
- A “Greater Nagalim” comprising “all contiguous Naga-inhabited areas”, along with Nagaland. That included several districts of Assam, Arunachal and Manipur, as also a large tract of Myanmar.
- The map of “Greater Nagalim” has about 1,20,000 sq km, while the state of Nagaland consists of 16,527 sq km. The claims have always kept Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh wary of a peace settlement that might affect their territories.
- The Nagaland Assembly has endorsed the ‘Greater Nagalim’ demand — “Integration of all Naga-inhabited contiguous areas under one administrative umbrella” — as many as five times: in December 1964, August 1970, September 1994, December 2003 and as recently as on July 27, 2015.
THE TIMELINE OF NAGA PEACE ACCORD:-
- AUG 1947:Naga National Council led by Angami Zapu Phizo revolts, NNC subsequently resolves to establish a sovereign Naga state
- MAY 1951:After ‘referendum’ NNC claims 99% of Naga people support independence. NNC boycotts first general election of 1952, launches violent secessionist movement
- MAR 22, 1956:Phizo creates underground Naga Federal Government (NFG) and a Naga Federal Army (NFA)
- APR 1956:New Delhi sends Army to crush insurgency in the (then) Naga Hills District of Assam; Phizo escapes to (then) East Pakistan in December and, subsequently, in June 1960, to London
- 1958:Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act enacted for Naga Hills District
- DEC 1, 1963:Nagaland attains statehood
- 1964:Peace Mission of Jai Prakash Narayan, B P Chaliha and Rev. Michael Scott to Nagaland, an Agreement for Suspension of Operation is signed with insurgents
- NOV 11, 1975:Shillong Accord signed between Centre and NNC
- 1980:Thuingaleng Muivah, Isak Chisi Swu, S S Khaplang form NSCN
- 1988:NSCN splits, Khole Konyak and Khaplang form NSCN (K)
- JUNE 15, 1995:P V Narasimha Rao meets Muivah and Isak in Paris
- FEB 3, 1997:Deve Gowda meets NSCN (IM) leadership in Zurich
- JULY 25, 1997:India and NSCN (IM) sign ceasefire agreement, which comes into effect on Aug 1
- SEP 30, 1998:Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Brajesh Mishra meet NSCN (IM) leaders in Paris
- JAN 9-11, 2003:Muivah and Isak hold talks with Vajpayee and Advani in Delhi
- DEC 7, 2004:NSCN (IM) leaders meet Manmohan Singh
- JULY 31, 2007:Ceasefire between NSCN (IM) and Government of India extended indefinitely
Key components of NAGA ACCORD:-
1) NSCN – IM has been derecognized as a militant organization and talks have been initiated with the government
2) GOI is open to discuss the Naga territorial issue within the existing boundaries of the neighboring states of Manipur, Assasm etc which are being claimed as part of Greater Nagalism.
3) Key issues that have been put under consideration includes AFSPA, demographic changes due to cross border migrations and other tribals like Meitei who are diluting the local populations in the Naga areas.
Impact on North East:-
- The details of agreement are still not out in public domain and hence it has created a suspicion in people of Nagaland. Majority of people are worried about their territorial integrity.
- The agreement has created differences among various Naga political groups such as NSCN(K) Khaplang faction, UNC (united Nagaland council) who were not party to the agreement. They are still resorting to the violent means of protest and recent economic blockade of Manipur is an example of that.
- NSCN (IM) has emerged as a larger player in the region and they are trying to dominate over the areas which is not their stronghold.
- Recent division in districts in Manipur to provide voice to Meitei tribes have not gone well with Naga Tribes and they have created an economic blockade since November 2016 disrupting life
- It shows the flexibility and realism of the NSCN (IM) in terms of the willingness to alter goals, from complete sovereignty and Greater Nagalim to acceptance of the constitutional framework albeit with a provision for the grant of greater autonomy to Naga inhabited areas outside of Nagaland through the establishment of autonomous district councils.
- The signing of the accord at this moment in time discloses that the platform of social support for the NSCN (IM) comprising of Naga civil society groups are insistent on a peaceful path to conflict resolution.
- The leaders of the NSCN (IM), Thuingaleng Muivah and Isak Chisi Swu (who has been unwell for some time now), have been forthcoming since 2011 to sign a framework agreement that pledges to preserve the culture, history and traditions of the Nagas and grants greater autonomy to Naga inhabited areas outside of Nagaland.
Therefore the issue is right now a boiling concern due to non acceptance of existing boundaries as prescribed in the Framework Agreement (the text of which is not out). Reluctance of Nagas to accept the solution and voicing against creation of newer district is a clear indication that the problem has to be throught through further with
1) further stakeholder involvement .
2) normalising tensions.
3) increasing developmental activties .
4) increasing connectivity in the region.
Topic: Mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
4) Critically comment on recommendations made by the Economic Survey in introducing a universal basic income in India. (200 Words)
Introduction:- A basic income (also called unconditional basic income, Citizen’s Income, basic income guarantee, universal basic income or universal demogrant) is a form of social security in which all citizens or residents of a country regularly receive an unconditional sum of money, either from a government or some other public institution, in addition to any income received from elsewhere.
Survey has provided following suggestions:-
- Univesal Basic Income should replace the welfare scheme. The Economic survey wants UBI to replace and NOT supplement the existing social welfare, anti-poverty schemes like MGNREGA, PMJSY etc
- Economic Survey has suggested to replace all current cash transfers with universal basic income.
- Survey in a bold step ensured that universal basic income will not be distributive in nature. The burden to distribute the income will not be shared by the rich.
Arguments in Favour :-
- Against Poverty and vulnerability reduction :-Poverty and vulnerability will be reduced in one fell swoop.
- Choice A UBI treats beneficiaries as agents and entrusts citizens with the responsibility of using welfare spending as they see best; this may not be the case with in-kind transfers.
- Better targeting of poor As all individuals are targeted, exclusion error (poor being left out) is zero though inclusion error (rich gaining access to the scheme) is 60 percent5 .
- Insurance against shocks This income floor will provide a safety net against health, income and other shocks.
- Improvement in financial inclusion Payment – transfers will encourage greater usage of bank accounts, leading to higher profits for banking correspondents (BC) and an endogenous improvement in financial inclusion. Credit – increased income will release the constraints on access to credit for those with low income levels.
- Psychological benefits A guaranteed income will reduce the pressures of finding a basic living on a daily basis.
- Administrative efficiency A UBI in place of a plethora of separate government schemes will reduce the administrative burden on the state.
Arguments against UBI:-
- Conspicuous spending Households, especially male members, may spend this additional income on wasteful activities.
- Moral hazard (reduction in labour supply) A minimum guaranteed income might make people lazy and opt out of the labour market.
- Gender disparity induced by cash Gender norms may regulate the sharing of UBI within a household – men are likely to exercise control over spending of the UBI. This may not always be the case with other in-kind transfers.
- Implementation Given the current status of financial access among the poor, a UBI may put too much stress on the banking system.
- Fiscal cost given political economy of exit Once introduced, it may become difficult for the government to wind up a UBI in case of failure.
- Political economy of universality – ideas for self-exclusion Opposition may arise from the provision of the transfer to rich individuals as it might seem to trump the idea of equity and state welfare for the poor.
- Exposure to market risks (cash vs. food) Unlike food subsidies that are not subject to fluctuating market prices, a cash transfer’s purchasing power may severely be curtailed by market fluctuations.
UBI holds a lot of potential as a welfare scheme, however in it’s present form needs to be re-evaluated. There is a need for a 10-fold increase in resource mobilisation combined with increasing the tax base for funding. Also, UBI should not be aimed at replacing the existing welfare schemes but stick to it’s core ideas of providing basic income to citizens without a means test and work requirement
General Studies – 3
5) Do you think the recent merger of mobile services companies in India is good for all the stakeholders? Substantiate. (200 Words)
India’s telecommunication market is world’s 2nd largest, with~54% of population having a mobile phone. However currently, the telecom companies are suffering from multiple issues owing to operator congestion, infra problems, high competitiveness, etc.
RECENT WAVE OF MERGERS –
Consolidation in India’s overcrowded telecommunications industry seemed inevitable. The current wave of mergers and acquisitions, which started in November 2015 with Reliance Communications’ agreement to acquire Sistema’s Indian wireless business, has gained considerable momentum over the last 15 months with several more announcements having been made.
Jio’s “predatory” approach to pricing caused dual problem of sharp decline in earnings of the industry and on the other hand the high cost of servicing the debt that had helped incumbent operators bid for and acquire the much-needed wireless spectrum at the government’s auction of airwaves. It is this financial bind that the industry finds itself in a situation where the return on capital deployed had dipped to low single-digit levels, making investment in the business unviable.
In 2011, there were 12 private players along with BSNL and MTNL; BUT as of December 2016, the number of non-state mobile services providers had shrunk to 10, inclusive of Reliance Jio. With seven of the nine either in the process of being acquired or merged, or in talks to negotiate a deal, the industry is now finally poised to coalesce into four large private sector entities, a welcome development both from the industry and government perspective.
BENEFICIAL EFFECTS OF CONSOLIDATION –
- Government –
– Low-cost approach and partner with them to push its programs – DI, connectivity to rural areas
-Easy allocation of spectrum and regulation .
- Service Providers–
– Enable infra : Avoid time delay in setting up infra, enable technology exchange, increase FDI, resulting into increased penetration .
Eg- Vodafone to benefit from Idea’s penetration in rural areas.
– Enhanced user base and stabilization of currently decreasing revenue/subscriber and operating/distribution costs.
– Effectively channelize resources , active approach to attract customers as now have much more resources- employees, technical equipments, expertise.
– Economies of scale – Create integrated one-service provider with increasing network interconnectedness and Increase in the reach as not all service providers are operational in every state. Eg- Purchase of YouBroadband by Vodafone.
– Increase debt service capability of stressed firms, after merging with larger partner (may help in reducing NPA).
– As Few big companies having much more resources hence – good quality of service , reduction in prices –overall benefit, if fair competition sets in .
- The regulator, TRAI –
– More efficient regulation of the services
- MONOPOLISTIC TENDENCIES – Would lead to sub-optimal outcome; and create powerful lobby against Govt. demanding of more incentives.Peak tariffs may be introduced by dominant firms after capturing adequate market share.
- Can lead to OLIGARCHY i.e Domination of few private players in the market hence affecting customers interest . Private players now can act as a group to dominate the market thus reducing effective competition.
- EFFECT ON GOVERNMENT REVENUE :- as few players in the game, government revenue in Spectrum auction and allocation will reduce and licensing fees will also reduce as reduction in number of operators.
WAY FORWARD –
Mergers of all kinds, small-small, small-big or big-big (Vodafone and Idea) is expected to reform and renew the mobile services in the country. Although more benefits are expected out of these mergers, TRAI needs to make sure that companies do not resort to monopolistic activities in their region or do not come together just to throw out another player from the market. A healthy competition would increase the access to high speed internet, better voice calls or probably a new technology, thus giving boost to other industries associated with ICT.