Big Diplomatic Win for INDIA ! 55-Asia Pacific Countries supports for India’s bid for non-permanent UNSC seat.

In a big diplomatic win for India as many as 55 countries of the Asia-Pacific group at the United Nations have supported India’s bid for a non-permanent seat at the Security Council

In a big diplomatic win for India as many as 55 countries of the Asia-Pacific group at the United Nations have supported India’s bid for a non-permanent seat at the Security Council for a two-year term between 2021-2022.

India has been a non-permanent member of  UN Security Council for seven times in the past several decades. India made its bid for membership at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meet held in Kyrgyzstan earlier this month.

India was a non-permanent membership at the UNSC  in 2011 and 2012 after it secured 187 of 190 valid votes at the United Nations General Assembly. This time also seeing the support of the countries, India may easily get the seat.

India has long been asking for the expansion of UNSC’s permanent as well as non-permanent membership, but China always rejects the proposal. The UNSC has five permanent members – the United States, United Kingdom, Russia, China and France, apart from ten non-permanent members for two-year terms. But seeing the rising influence of India, it may get a permanent seat soon.

Fresh Bill to be presented in Parliament to ban the practice of Triple Talaq !

A Fresh bill to ban the practice of triple talaq!

A promise that Modi government made to Ban Triple Talaq was long pending due to the opposition it faced from other members. But the Government is again presenting a fresh bill in the parliament, to ban the practice of instant triple talaq.

The new bill which is named to be, “The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019” has been listed in the Lok Sabha’s agenda. This bill will replace an ordinance which was issued in February by the previous BJP-led NDA government.

With the dissolution of the 16th Lok Sabha last month, the previous bill had lapsed as it was pending in the Rajya Sabha. The Bill, proposes to make the practice of instant triple talaq a penal offence, and proposes a jail term for a man for divorcing his wife.

After Narendra Modi government returned to power in the recently held elections, it has decided to give a fresh push to these proposed laws in the newly-constituted Lok Sabha. These ordinances will have to be converted into laws within 45 days of the beginning of the session, else they will lapse.

One Nation, One Election to become a reality? PM to set up a Panel

PM Narendra Modi’s vision for One Nation, One Election to become a reality. Under One Nation One Election the elections for the state assemblies and the Lok Sabha will be held simultaneously. This system will involve the restructuring of the Indian election cycle so that the elections to the states and the center synchronize.

This will let the voters to cast their vote for electing members of the LS and the state assemblies simultaneously. Although Simultaneous elections are not new to India. They were common till 1967. But following dissolution of some Legislative Assemblies in 1968 and 1969 and that of the Lok Sabha in December 1970, elections to State Assemblies and Parliament have been held separately.

But now again in the Modi regime the talks for one nation and one election have started with Modi Government holding a all party meeting for discussing on the topic although many left leaders skipped the meeting.

The Modi government also set up a committee to study the possibility and the technicality involved. Even President Ram Nath Kovind Expressed his support for One Nation and One Election in his speech.

Poor Performance? Modi Government may retire you!

The Modi government seems to be in full mood against those who are poor at their work and in its order it has compulsorily retired 15 more officers from Indian Revenue Service.

Among them is the Chief of IRS officers A K Srivastava, the center has invoked Rule 56,J of the fundamental rules which gives it the power to terminate the service of those officers who are over 50 years of age and have  serious charges against them.

All the 15 officers belong to the ranks of Assistant commissioners, Principal Commissioners or Commissioners — are to be paid a sum equivalent to the amount of pay and allowances for a period of three months at the same rate at which they would have received immediately before their retirement.

Bharat Bandh: How a septuagenarian currency, century-bound petrol is plotting a political mayhem for Modi govt

On 19 June, 2013 when the Rupee touched 60 against the US dollar

On 19 June, 2013 when the Rupee touched 60 against the US dollar, popular author and columnist Chetan Bhagat tweeted, “Rupee at 60. It is mayhem. Close to an economic crisis. But well, the government is silent.”

If one does a back-of-the-envelope calculation to assess the cost impact of the rupee depreciation on India’s oil import bill, one can see an increase of about 15 percent. This is taking rupee’s January trading value of 63.25 per dollar and 72.48 per dollar now. On the other hand, fuel prices are crossing new limits. Petrol was priced at Rs 88.12 per litre on Monday while diesel at 77.42 per litre.

The Modi government will find it very difficult to justify such high fuel prices when crude is at 77-levels as agitators will cite much lower petrol/ diesel prices during UPA-era at a time when crude was hovering near $140 levels per barrel. The Opposition hasn’t wasted a moment to use the opportunity to accuse the government of failing in its duties to hold back fuel prices and arrest the rupee’s uncontrollable fall. The ongoing Bharat bandh is a result of the political plot to cash in on the rupee-fuel shock.

Right now, in the forex market, there are a lot of negative sentiments at play and dollar outflow weighing on the currency. There is always a debate on what is the real value of rupee and whether the rupee is overvalued at current levels. A depreciating currency and rising fuel prices will have inflationary impacts and will prompt the RBI to go for another round of rate hikes. Despite the theoretical gains to exporters from a falling rupee, the gains won’t be much when compared with the costs and adverse economic impact.

Ironically, in the beginning of his tenure, PM Modi had described himself lucky since crude was at its lowest point and rupee was range-bound. The PM even used this luck factor in his political speeches. “Do you want a lucky person or someone who is less lucky?” asked Modi in February 2015, when campaigning for the Delhi Assembly elections. Modi had said then, “Ok, let’s accept that I am lucky but you have saved money. If Modi’s luck is benefiting the people, what can be more fortunate? If because of my good luck, prices of petrol and diesel get reduced and common man saves more, then what is the need for bringing someone who is unlucky?”

Modi, on that day, went on to say that if his luck was benefiting his people, then they must vote for the BJP in Delhi. Modi must be missing those days now. Petrol was retailing at Rs 56.49 per litre in Delhi then while diesel was being sold at Rs 46.01 a litre; international crude oil prices were trending at $60.00 per barrel.

Unfortunately, Modi’s luck has vanished at a politically critical point for him. A septuagenarian Rupee and a century-bound petrol and diesel will become Narendra Modi’s new political adversaries as he prepares for the 2019 election battle. In fact, till the time crude plays spoilsport and given the stress on twin deficits, the Modi government can do very little at this stage to do anything significant to save the falling rupee.

The ball is in the central bank’s court; like Raghuram Rajan’s currency saving operation in 2013, the RBI can launch another round of rupee bailout plan by restricting capital outflows and incentivising dollar inflows through foreign currency bonds. But, even then, it is too late for the Modi government to win the perception battle. A depreciating rupee and high fuel prices has a political and economic impact for the Modi government. High fuel prices have cascading impact on all walks of public life and hence there will be more Bharat Bandhs in the days ahead that can easily connect with people on the street.