China Speaks of 'Four Insistences' in Ties With India; Maharashtra Cliffhanger Will Influence 2024 General Election
Russia’s BRICS trade up 38%, Chinese imports up 46%, Karnataka textbook updates support caste, as inflation soars Parle-G shrinks to hold the priceline, the Lata-Raj Dungarpur love story
A newsletter from The Wire & Galileo Ideas | Contributors: MK Venu, Seema Chishti, Siddharth Varadarajan, Sidharth Bhatia, Sushant Singh and Tanweer Alam | Editor: Pratik Kanjilal
Snapshot of the day
June 23, 2022
Cumulative profits of the top 500 Indian companies as a percentage of GDP hit a 11-year high of 4.3% in 2021-22 (FY22), domestic brokerage Motilal Oswal notes. This was on the back of 48% year-on- year growth in corporate profit. GDP also expanded 19.5% in FY22 after contracting in 2020-21 due to Covid-19. The profit to GDP ratio is now well above the long-term average of 3.7%.
Yesterday in Beijing, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi offered four “insistences” on China-India relations to Pradip Rawat, the new Indian envoy: first, adhere to the important strategic consensus of the leaders of the two countries that “China and India are not competitors, but partners, do not pose a threat to each other, and are opportunities for each other’s development”. Second, place the border issue in an appropriate position in bilateral relations and seek a solution through dialogue and consultation. Third, persist in continuously injecting positive energy into bilateral relations, give full play to the traditional advantages of people-to-people exchanges, and continuously expand mutually beneficial cooperation. Fourth, adhere to the expansion of multilateral cooperation, work together to revitalise Eastern civilization, jointly cope with the complex world, and create a better future for mankind.
Rawat said that India would firmly pursue an independent foreign policy and is willing to work with China to uphold the strategic consensus of the leaders of the two countries, strengthen communication, properly handle differences, enhance mutual trust and promote better development of bilateral cooperation. The Indian readout is less expansive.
Addressing the BRICS business meeting with Modi and Xi yesterday, Putin said that discussions were ongoing on the “opening of Indian chain stores in Russia, increasing the share of Chinese automobiles” on the Russian market. “Russian oil deliveries to China and India are increasing. Agricultural cooperation is developing dynamically,” as is the export of Russian fertiliser to BRICS countries, he said. Despite all the difficulties in the global economy due to “politically motivated sanctions,” Russia’s trade within the group rose 38% in the first three months of the year to $45 billion, he said.
India is among the special invitees to the G7 summit in Germany on June 26-27, along with Argentina, Indonesia, Senegal and South Africa. New Delhi is preparing for more pressure from G7 ― from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, the US and the EU, which have imposed sanctions on Russia. They want India to join the effort by restricting the purchase of Russian oil, not circumventing sanctions through a rupee-rouble mechanism, and lifting the wheat export ban. India is unlikely to comply.
Maharashtra remains a cliffhanger. As a battle for the Shiv Sena’s legacy and for hearts and minds begins, party boss and Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray – who apparently commands the loyalty of barely two dozen MLAs – moved out of the official residence and to his private home. He spoke to his party directly on social media, despite being ill with Covid. Eknath Shinde has been battling with his party to try and shake off allies Congress and NCP. With two-thirds of the party’s MLAs on his side, Shinde has the upper hand. Thackeray loyalist Sanjay Raut is now saying the party may be willing to consider his demand that the Sena ditch its coalition partners.
Several media outlets and journalists claimed Maharashtra MLA Aaditya Thackeray removed ‘Minister’ from his Twitter bio amid the ongoing political crisis. But Thackeray’s bio didn’t have the word ‘Minister’ at all, reminds AltNews.
The India Cable is reader-supported and we need you to subscribe by filling in your email. As they say, ‘Kindly do the needful’.
The deluge in Assam should have been the news, rather than the state’s turncoats. The Brahmaputra and Barak river systems are inundating fresh areas and impacting the lives of over 55 lakh people across 32 districts. At least 89 have died in the past five weeks. Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma came under criticism after being seen at Radisson Blu, the hotel where the rebel Shiv Sena MLAs are being hosted, when severe floods needed his complete attention. He said “tax-paying tourists” are welcome, when asked about the incongruity of Shiv Sena MLAs from so far away on what was clearly an extraordinary visit.
Sri Lanka Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday told Parliament that India’s financial assistance is not “charitable donations” and the nation, facing its worst economic crisis ever, needs to plan to repay loans. He announced that a team of high-ranking officials from the Reserve Bank of India is in Colombo today to assess the economic situation, which is now far more serious than mere shortages of food, fuel and electricity.
Leading Indian-American scientist Arti Prabhakar has been nominated as a top science advisor to the US President, a decision hailed by the White House and the Indian-American community as “historic”. If confirmed by the Senate, Dr Prabhakar would be the first woman, immigrant or person of colour to be Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). She is the latest highly qualified Indian-American professional to be named for a key position in the Biden administration.
The Modi government has AltNews co-founder Mohammed Zubair’s Twitter account in its sights. It claims that it violates Indian laws. Twitter has not acted on the complaint. But filmmaker Sandeep Ravindranath, who made a short feature on disappearances in Kashmir has had his video removed from YouTube thanks to “a legal complaint from the government”.
Adityanath’s government has told the Supreme Court that the ongoing demolition drive in UP is being misconstrued as discriminatory targeting of minorities, though the exercise was carried out lawfully. Citing the UP Urban Planning and Development Act, 1973, the government said that illegal structures were demolished following due process by the autonomous Prayagraj Development Authority. The apex court was hearing a plea filed by the Jamiat Ulama-I-Hind, which had claimed that the government had targeted the minority community in Prayagraj and Kanpur and brought down their houses, following protests in the area against insulting remarks made against the prophet by two national spokespersons of the BJP, which had seriously displeased West Asia. The UP affidavit says the demolitions have nothing to do with the riots, even though senior police officials are on record saying they will demolish the property of the riot accused.
Rahul Gandhi told his party what he had not told the Enforcement Directorate:
Parle-Gnomics: Aruna Urs has tracked the size of the benchmark biscuit pack, which came down from 120 gm to 110 gm and then to 100 gm in recent months. Its size was reduced to hold ‘magic’ price points as inflation raged.