India Needs $100 Billion More Annually To Meet Net Zero Target; Whose Vikas Is It, Anyway?
Huge overruns in central projects, Gen Bajwa confidant says India & Pakistan NSAs always in touch, Punjabi Australia’s fastest-growing language, new PM museum all about Nehru missteps vs Modi’s magic
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Snapshot of the day
January 10, 2023
The Supreme Court yesterday extended the house arrest of Gautam Navlakha till February 17. A bench headed by Justice KM Joseph said the interim order allowing house arrest shall remain in force because Additional Solicitor General SV Raju was not available for the hearing. Senior advocate Nitya Ramakrishnan, appearing for Navlakha, told the bench that her client’s daughter lives abroad and sought permission to call him. She said, “He can’t call an international number. I thought we will file an application, but since we are already here, I will give the information to NIA.” The apex court had earlier agreed to Navlakha’s plea to be placed under house arrest instead of judicial custody in Taloja Jail, Maharashtra.
Tamil Nadu governor RN Ravi would rather that the state he nominally heads were called ‘Tamizhagam’ and has printed Pongal invitations with this name, triggering a fresh row with the elected state government headed by the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam. Though Ravi is the Narendra Modi government’s sword arm, the opposition AIADMK – an ally of the the BJP – is also not happy with this terminological coup. After all, the state’s name, Tamil Nadu, was picked by party founder Annadurai.
The Centre, yet again, yesterday sought more time from the Supreme Court to clarify its stand on the validity of the Places of Worship Act, which protects the identity and character of religious places as they were on Independence Day. The Supreme Court website shows the case is to be listed again on March 21. On November 14 last year, the court had given the Centre till December 12 , 2022 to file its affidavit clarifying its position on the issue after the latter had submitted that “detailed consultations” were required at a “particular level”. Prior to that, the court had asked the government to file its affidavit by October 31. Again, before that, the court had directed the Centre on September 9 to file its affidavit in two weeks.
As Nepal PM Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ seeks a vote of confidence in the parliament today, his ally and former PM KP Oli subtly accused New Delhi of trying to change the government in Kathmandu “through the backdoor”, adding that such actions were not expected from a neighbouring nation which should not intervene in the internal affairs of Nepal. He, however, avoided naming India.
Indian diplomats will meet former Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Zhao Lijian, once described as “China’s aggressive new voice” of Wolf Warrior mettle, in border talks. He has been appointed deputy director in the Boundary and Ocean Affairs Department. Zhao earlier served in Islamabad, where he was famously known as ‘Muhammad Zhao’.
India will lose the tag of fastest-growing major economy, as its GDP growth suffered under weakening demand at home and abroad. GDP will grow 7% in the fiscal year, according to the first official estimate released by the Ministry of Statistics on Friday. Saudi Arabia is expected to grow at 7.6%, thanks to high energy prices.
“Consumer sentiments remain lower than pre-pandemic levels. It remains one of the few indicators of the Indian economy that has not recovered fully. This is seen in CMIE’s Index of Consumer Sentiments and also in RBI’s Consumer Confidence Index,” writes Mahesh Vyas of CMIE. “Consumer sentiments, or confidence, are important because they reflect the propensity of households to spend, and household spending contributes to well over half of India’s GDP. Private final consumption expenditure (PFCE), which comprises largely, though not entirely, the spending by households, accounts for 57% of India’s GDP.”
Months before the crisis in Joshimath, Raini, the village in Chamoli where the Chipko movement started in 1973, was declared uninhabitable. It had suffered serious damage on February 7 last year following the bursting of a glacial lake, which washed away the Rishiganga hydel project and NTPC’s Tapovan Vishnugad project. The village lies at the confluence of the rivers.
Looking at the target of giving every Indian a house by 2022, a simple status check shows that nearly a third of the target for rural housing and half of the urban target under the PMAY is yet to be completed.
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Delays in central projects have spiked over the last year and cost overruns have risen, as per official data. Nearly 51% of monitored projects costing Re 150 crore and above were running with a time lag as of November 2022, compared with 32% at the same time in 2021 and around 41% in April. The average overrun in the delayed projects rose to 42 months in November 2022, up from 32.2 months in 2021.
India needs an additional investment of up to $100 billion annually to meet its 2070 net-zero carbon emissions goal, according to Jayant Sinha, who chairs the parliamentary panel on finance. India is the world’s third largest emitter of greenhouse gases after China and the US ― though per capita emissions are low ― according to Our World in Data. Additional investments will fund infrastructure that supports the third largest Asian economy’s green transition, including boosting hydrogen capacity, changing existing stock of internal combustion engines and building charging stations, Sinha said. Under the Paris Agreement, which limits warming to 1.5° Celsius above pre-industrial temperatures, all countries are required to submit reports showing how they will get there.
The Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE) is the highest decision-making body advising the government on education policy, but it has not met since September 2019 and does not plan to, either. The 2019 meeting was held after a delay of over a year and a half. The main agenda for this meeting was the discussion of the draft of the National Education Policy (NEP). There has been no CABE meeting on implementation of the policy.
The Bengaluru City civil court yesterday stayed the release of Siddu Nija Kanasugalu on a petition filed by Congress MLA Yathindra Siddaramaiah, son of leader of the Opposition and former CM Siddaramaiah. The book, authored by Rohith Chakrathirtha, was to be released yesterday afternoon by Karnataka Higher Education Minister CN Ashwath Narayan, and BJP MLC Chalavadi Narayanaswamy was the chief guest. Chakrathirtha earlier headed the state’s textbooks revision committee, which the government disbanded after protests over new textbooks.
The new museum of prime ministers includes a chronicle of Nehru’s missteps and Modi’s magic. Newslaundry catalogues exactly what has changed in the revamped complex at Teen Murti Bhavan, and what the memorial now means.
Punjabi, Australia’s fastest-growing language, will soon be taught in school. The country is also developing syllabi for Hindi, Korean and Tamil, which are expected to be introduced in the curriculum in 2024.
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