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TOPIC : GS 2 Bilateral, Regional and Global Groupings and Agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

An elite club

What is the news?

  • The G­7 summit at Carbis Bay, sent out two very strong messages.
  • The first was driven by the United States new President Joseph Biden and his vow that “America is back” to take the lead on global challenges.

Taking the Global Challenges at lead

  • The G­7 commitment to donate one billion coronavirus vaccines to poorer countries
  • It is to invest $12 trillion in their combined pandemic recovery plan depends on U.S. commitments for a large part.
  • The special press statement on “Open Societies” for the G­7 outreach and the invitation to “fellow democracies” India, Australia, South Korea and South Africa are also an extension of his stated commitment
  • Even the slogan for the G­7, “Build Back Better”, was a term to declare global economy and jobs recovery plan.
  • The second message was the consensus amongst the seven­member countries on countering China.

 

  • The final G­7 bulletin holds no less than four direct references to China each negative
  1. Including criticising Beijing for its rights record in Xinjiang lab over corona  virus
  2. Democratic freedoms in Hong Kong, its “non­market policies and practices
  3. Concerns over its actions in the China Seas
  4. Demand for a transparent investigation into the origins of the COVID­19 virus.

Uncertainties among Members 

  • Though the happiness among the G­7 leaders was visible, the differences and contradictions in the grouping remain a challenge.
  • Questions were raised about whether the grouping (earlier, the G­8), could claim its mantle as the world’s “richest” countries
  • The problem mainly concerns with emerging economies China and India are not included.
  • On economic front the EU is a more representative unit than the individual European G­7 member countries.
  • Finally, the premise of a group like the G­7, that of an exclusive club of the “haves” or “the best vs the rest”, in a world
  • It is much more interlinked now than in 1975, when the grouping first came about.

India ‘s Front Period

  • India, a special guest to the G­7/G­8 since 2003 has also maintained its independent course especially on political issues.
  • It is significant that the G­7 outreach bulletin that included the guest countries, did not make the same references to China as the main document
  • MEA officials clarified that Chinese aggression was not raised at the outreaches
  • India mainly focused on the pandemic, climate change and democratic freedoms.
  • India voiced concerns about some clauses in the joint statement on Open Societies which condemned “rising authoritarianism”, net shutdowns, manipulation of information, and rights violations

Way Forward

India is a “natural ally” to the G­7. In the present, the Government will be expected to walk the talk on its commitments at the G­7 outreach, especially in the areas of information clampdowns, given that India had the largest number of Internet shutdowns in 2020.

 

Mains question

The G­7 needs to be more open and less exclusive in an increasingly interlinked world. Discuss

Sources : https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/an-elite-club-on-g-7-summit/article34816416.ece

PRELIMS PUNCHERS

  1. Pyrostria laljii

The tree that belongs to the genus of the coffee family has recently been discovered from the Andaman Islands from India and the Philippines. The new species. It is also the first record of the genus Pyrostria in India. Plants belonging to genus Pyrostria are usually found in Madagascar

Pyrostria laljii has been assessed as ‘Critically Endangered’ based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List criteria. While the genus Pyrostria is not found in India, there are several genera from the family Rubiaceae that are common in India. These plants, including cinchona, coffee, Adina, hamelia, ixora, galium, gardenia, mussaenda, rubia, morinda, have high potential for economic value. The A&N Islands is a group of 572 islands and islets that are rich and unique in terms of plant diversity in India.

Sources : https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/15-metre-tree-discovered-in-andaman-nicobar-islands/article34806204.ece

  1. Biological weapon

It is also called germ weapon, any of a number of disease-producing agents such as bacteria, viruses, rickettsiae, fungi, toxins, or other biological agents that may be utilized as weapons against humans, animals, or plants.

Biological warfare agents differ greatly in the type of organism or toxin used in a weapons system, lethality, length of incubation, infectiousness, stability, and ability to be treated with current vaccines and medicines. There are five different categories of biological agents that could be weaponized and used in warfare or terrorism. Most weaponized lethal biological agents are intended to be delivered as aerosols, which would cause infections when breathed by the targeted personnel. Biological agents, like anthrax, botulinum toxin and plague can pose a difficult public health challenge causing large numbers of deaths in a short amount of time while being difficult to contain.

Sources : https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/planning-for-a-biosecure-future/article34806702.ece

  1. 3. Khardung La pass

It is a mountain pass in the Leh district of the Indian union territory of Ladakh. The local pronunciation is “Khardong La” or “Khardzong La” but, as with most names in Ladakh, the romanised spelling varies. The pass on the Ladakh Range is north of Leh and is the gateway to the Shyok and Nubra valleys. The Siachen Glacier lies part way up the latter valley.

Maintained by the Border Roads Organisation, the pass is strategically important to India as it is used to carry supplies to the Siachen Glacier. It has an arctic tundra climate  with short, cool summers and long, very cold winters.

Sources : https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/galwan-valley-a-spur-in-the-grand-rivalry/article31878400.ece

  1. Jardalu Mangoes

“Zardalu Mango/ Jardalu Mango” of Bhagalpur (Bihar) are famous in world by virtue of its unique fragrance. This mango variety is known for its light yellow skin, and sweetness. It was first planted in Bhagalpur region by Maharaja Rahmat Ali Khan Bahadur of Kharagpur. Mangoes are processed by the APEDA registered packhouse facilities and then exported to various regions and countries including the Middle-east, European Union, USA, Japan and South Korea.

The first commercial consignment of Geographical Indications (GI) certified Jardalu mangoes from Bhagalpur, Bihar was exported to United Kingdom. APEDA ,in collaboration with Bihar government, Indian High Commission & Invest India, exported juicy & aromatic mangoes which were packed and treated at APEDA packhouse  in Lucknow. With distinct aroma and taste, Jardalu mangoes from Bhagalpur district of Bihar received GI certification in 2018.

Sources : https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/economy/agri-business/india-exports-gi-certified-jardalu-mangoes-to-uk/article34814698.ece

PRELIMS QUESTIONS

  1. Consider the following statement with reference to Pyrostria laljii
  2. It has recently been discovered from the western ghats from India
  3. It has been assessed as ‘ Endangered’ based (IUCN) Red List criteria

Select the correct statement using code given below.

(a). 1only                                 (b) 2 only

(c). Both of them                 (d). None of the above

Answer : D

The tree that belongs to the genus of the coffee family has recently been discovered from the Andaman Islands from India and the Philippines. The new species. It is also the first record of the genus Pyrostria in India. Plants belonging to genus Pyrostria are usually found in Madagascar

Pyrostria laljii has been assessed as ‘Critically Endangered’ based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List criteria. While the genus Pyrostria is not found in India, there are several genera from the family Rubiaceae that are common in India. These plants, including cinchona, coffee, Adina, hamelia, ixora, galium, gardenia, mussaenda, rubia, morinda, have high potential for economic value. The A&N Islands is a group of 572 islands and islets that are rich and unique in terms of plant diversity in India.

  1. Consider the following statement with reference to Jardalu Mango
  2. It got geographical indication from Andhra Pradesh
  3. It was exported to United Kingdom with APEDA ,in collaboration with Bihar government

Select the correct statement using code given below.

(a). 1only                                 (b) 2 only

(c). Both of them                 (d). None of the above

Answer : B

“Zardalu Mango/ Jardalu Mango” of Bhagalpur (Bihar) are famous in world by virtue of its unique fragrance. This mango variety is known for its light yellow skin, and sweetness. It was first planted in Bhagalpur region by Maharaja Rahmat Ali Khan Bahadur of Kharagpur. Mangoes are processed by the APEDA registered packhouse facilities and then exported to various regions and countries including the Middle-east, European Union, USA, Japan and South Korea.

The first commercial consignment of Geographical Indications (GI) certified Jardalu mangoes from Bhagalpur, Bihar was exported to United Kingdom. APEDA ,in collaboration with Bihar government, Indian High Commission & Invest India, exported juicy & aromatic mangoes which were packed and treated at APEDA packhouse  in Lucknow. With distinct aroma and taste, Jardalu mangoes from Bhagalpur district of Bihar received GI certification in 2018.

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