Modi may attend U.S. nuclear security summit next year - (International Relation)
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to travel to the United States for the fourth Nuclear Security Summit on March 31-April 1, 2016, an initiative of President Barack Obama who considers nuclear terrorism the “most immediate and extreme threat to global security.”
- A U.S. diplomat told The Hindu that Mr. Obama had invited Mr. Modi when both met in New York last month and it was now for the Prime Minister to take the decision.
Sushma sets the stage for Defence Minister’s visit to Russia - (International Relation)
- Setting the stage for the next India-Russia summit meeting, the just-concluded Moscow visit by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj began the much awaited talks on defence procurement and sensitive strategic cooperation.
- Official sources have told The Hindu that a major part of Ms. Swaraj’s visit was aimed at smoothening the way for the Inter Governmental Commission on Military Technical Cooperation (IRIGC-MTC), which will be led by Minister for Defence Manohar Parrikar from the Indian side.
Indo-Canadians win big as Liberals sweep to power - (International Relation)
- Newly elected Canadian MP Chandra Arya is a “newbie” in more ways than one. Not only is he a new MP, this tech-entrepreneur joined politics recently, and moved to Canada only 12 years ago.
- Mr. Arya has been elected from Ottawa along with 19 other Indo-Canadians in the parliamentary elections, one of 18 Liberal candidates who swept to power on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s wave. “My constituency has never elected a south Asian before, and Liberals haven’t won it for years,” he told The Hindu over telephone from Ottawa shortly after his win, adding, “It shows how everyone has a chance here.”
Nuclear tango in Afghan shadow - (International Relation)
- After the Taliban’s Kunduz takeover, U.S. postponed troop withdrawal by a year; it was clear that any successful pullout and transition has to involve Islamabad’s complete cooperation.
- The discussions over a possible U.S.-Pak. nuclear deal reminds us of the 1980s, when the Reagan administration deliberately overlooked Pakistan’s clandestine nuclear activities. Notwithstanding its current troubles in Afghanistan, Washington should steer clear of repeating past mistakes.
Measures for judicial reform - (Indian Polity)
- The Supreme Court has spoken on the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC). Right or wrong, it is final, till a larger bench overrules the verdict, which seems unlikely in the near future.
- Expansive arguments and expositions of the Constitution and the laws were advanced during the hearing and have been considered by the Court. A rehash of the same in the media may be useful only to pat oneself on the back or to express one’s anguish. I doubt whether the debate will have any meaningful impact on public opinion or lead to a change in the view of the Court.
Thank you, Assad tells Putin in Moscow - (International Relation)
- President Vladimir Putin of Russia called his counterpart, Bashar Assad of Syria, to Moscow for an unannounced visit to discuss their joint military campaign and a future political transition in Syria, the Kremlin announced on Wednesday.
- According to a transcript posted on the Kremlin’s website, Mr. Putin told the Syrian leader during the meeting late on Tuesday that Russia was ready to contribute to the fight against terrorism and to a political settlement of the conflict that has raged for more than four years. Mr. Assad, in turn, briefed the Russian leader about the situation on the ground and on the next steps.
Cameron hails historic nuclear deal with China - (International Relation)
- Prime Minister David Cameron has said China’s agreement to partly finance a U.K. nuclear power plant is a “historic” deal that will create thousands of British jobs.
- President Xi Jinping signed an agreement on Wednesday that will see China’s state-owned power company take a £6-billion 35 per cent share in a new plant to be built with France’s EDF.
RBI Governor went with majority view for rate cut - (Economics)
- The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Raghuram Rajan went with the majority view of external members on the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) on the policy rate to announce the rate cut.
- “On policy options, six members recommended reduction in the policy repo rate — two suggesting a reduction of 50 basis points (bps), one being flexible within the range of 25 to 50 bps, while three wanted to move cautiously with a reduction of 25 bps,” showed the minutes, which were released on Wednesday.