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Saturday, 30 April 2016

From Today's Papers - 30 Apr 2016

























http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/agusta-cbi-ed-summon-iaf-ex-chief-tyagi/230040.html
Agusta: CBI, ED summon IAF ex-Chief Tyagi
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 29
The CBI today summoned former Air Force Chief SP Tyagi and former deputy Air Chief JS Gujral for questioning in connection with its probe into the alleged corruption in Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal.

It would be the second time that the duo would be questioned as both had been examined in 2013 too.

Sources said Gujral had been called for questioning tomorrow and Tyagi — summoned by the ED as well — on Monday. The fresh round of questioning was necessitated after the April 7 verdict of an Italian court convicting two defence major Finmeccanica (AgustaWestland is its subsidiary) officials for paying kickbacks for the deal with India during the UPA regime.


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/comment/relations-with-pakistan/229920.html
Relations with Pakistan
S Nihal Singh
Are official talks a subterfuge?
THE Indo-Pakistan talks are, more often than not, playing blind man’s buff. The point about New Delhi inviting Pakistan’s foreign secretary Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry for a meeting with his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar was to start the process of talking all over again. The outcome was in keeping with low expectations as became clear from the recital of well-worn themes by the two sides: stop terror and the centrality of Kashmir.

There are interesting nuances though to this meeting of the two foreign secretaries, the first since the Pathankot attack. First, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dramatic stopover in Lahore last Christmas to meet Mr Nawaz Sharif soon yielded place to relations taking a dip. This week’s talks sought to give a push to keeping a conversation going. And the Pathankot attack prompted Islamabad to countenance the Pakistani origin of the attackers although the visit of its team to the scene of the crime has led to the usual inspired leaks.

 The Delhi talks produced the familiar narratives, and the Pakistanis this time had an alleged Indian spy to spice their version of events. The resonance of the two countries’ relations on their peoples being what it is, neither side can stray from the script. Is it then a ruse accepted by the two sides to hold secret talks behind the facade of the usual name-calling to arrive at a compromise?

The contours of the policies of the two unfriendly neighbours are well known. Kashmir has acquired an almost surrealistic quality for Pakistanis because their leaders have been telling them since Partition that it was “stolen” by India after attempts to acquire it by force through irregular and regular troops failed. The policy then employed by a succession of Pakistani rulers was to bleed India through a thousand cuts.

It does not take a Sherlock Holmes to discover that terrorists, with the connivance of the Pakistani authorities, are nurtured, trained and equipped by organisations such as the Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed, the latter under Masood Azhar, to commit murder and mayhem in India. In course of time Islamabad had to grapple with the problem of  separating ‘good terrorists’ from ‘bad’ because the latter variety was going after the Pakistani power structure.

There was another twist to the Pakistan story because, especially in the reign of Mr Sharif, the army had tightened its grip on foreign and security policies, particularly in relations with India, China and the US, and on the key to the bomb. Given its history, the army has been a power factor after the early deaths of the iconic Muhammad Ali Jinnah and his successor Liaquat Ali Khan. It consolidated its power after the sad end of the showman Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, particularly during the present ostensibly civilian regime.

 In India, the coming to power of Mr Modi represented a break from the past. The last years of the UPA-II were problem-ridden, with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh beholden to his own party chief and demanding coalition partners. Ironically, despite his emotional attachment to his former home in Pakistan, he could not make a single visit to the neighbouring country in his 10 years in office.

Hopes were high at one time on both sides that Mr Modi, as the head of an ultra-nationalist party enjoying a majority government, could make a new opening in traditionally stalled relations. The analogy, of course, was that it needed a Richard Nixon to make peace with Communist China. He invited Mr Sharif, among other neighbouring leaders, to his swearing in, and when after a time, talks were stalled in a familiar quagmire, he took the daring step of greeting Mr Sharif in his Lahore home.

Pathankot followed, as if on cue, to stymie the upswing in relations —nothing like a terror attack to bring back the familiar rhetoric on the two sides. But one interesting difference this time was that Islamabad did not dismiss Pakistani provenance in the attack. So the question remains: where do the two sides go from here? The simple answer New Delhi came up with was to resume talking under the cover of a high-level conference on Afghanistan.

Unfortunately, the device of the national security advisers (NSAs) of the two countries forming another channel of communication does not seem to be working. For New Delhi, it had the benefit of keeping the Pakistan army in the loop because its NSA is a retired general. But apart from breaking the ice through a meeting in Thailand, the two NSAs are repeating the narrative of the political channel.

Efforts in the past to open a separate secret official channel led to interesting ideas being thrown up, but in the end they could not stand the test of working through the bureaucracy of the two countries to reach the top to be converted into negotiating positions. If the two sides do not use talks they may have in future as a camouflage for real discussions, there is little prospect of a beginning to the end of a long process of reconciliation.

The world is littered with unresolved problems between countries left over by history and passionate debates. The subcontinent’s Partition was a great human tragedy while bringing freedom. Pakistanis have the more difficult task of reconciling with India because they have not quite decided what the shape and goals of their country should be. Islamabad also has an ideological problem, with the Muslim world in the Middle East seething in ferment and extremist tendencies coming to the fore. The moderate Pakistani, particularly among the professional and middle classes, might be in a minority but it is a significant minority.

The Modi government’s attempt seems to be to test the limits of Pakistan’s existing juxtaposition of forces in an effort to keep the conversation process going — to “keep in touch”, according to the official script. The terrorists have the advantage of springing a surprise.


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/privilege-notice-against-mod/229926.html
Privilege notice against MoD
The Congress today submitted a breach of privilege notice against the Ministry of Defence (MoD) for a statement on the AgustaWestland deal it put out while Parliament is in session.

RS members Shantaram Naik and Hussain Dalwai submitted the notice to the secretariat today claiming that the ministry statement was in violation of the rules of the House. The statement should have been made in Parliament, they said. Sources privy to the development said the members contended that publishing of a clarification through a government website constitutes a breach of privilege of the House and that of the members.

The ministry said the Italian firm was not blacklisted during the Congress regime, rather all defence procurements from AgustaWestland were put on hold by the NDA government. On Wednesday, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said he would respond after 7-8 days as he had to peruse papers as regards the case. — TNS


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/41-soldiers-killed-in-siachen-since-2013/229955.html
41 soldiers killed in Siachen since 2013
Forty-one soldiers have lost their lives in Siachen Glacier since 2013, the government said today. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar in a written reply in Lok Sabha said 10 soldiers were killed in 2013, eight and nine in 2014 and 2015, respectively. Till March 31, 14 soldiers have died this year, Parrikar said, adding medical equipment existed in all posts for emergencies. pti

25,000 dowry deaths during 2012-14

Around 25,000 women were either killed or committed suicide due to dowry harassment by their in-laws between 2012 and 2014, Union Minister Maneka Gandhi said in the Lok Sabha on Friday. Around 30,000 cases of dowry were registered during the same time, she said in a written reply on implementation of the Dowry Prohibition Act. PTI

Temples, trusts deposit 1,512 kg gold

Banks have collected about 1,500 kg of gold from temples and trusts under the Gold Monetisation Scheme (GMS) since its launch last November. Under the GMS, 2015 approximately 1,512 kg of gold has so far been deposited by temples or trusts, Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha said in a written reply to Lok Sabha Friday. PTi

11,997 cases of cyber frauds

Nearly 12,000 cases related to credit/debit cards and net banking were reported during April- December 2015. As many aas 13,083 and 11,997 cases related to ATM, credit, and debit cards and net banking frauds were reported by the banks during 2014-15 and 2015-16 (up to December 2015), respectively, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said in a written reply to Rajya Sabha. PTI

Notices to those named in Panama Papers

Responding to questions on tax evasion and black money, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Friday said in the Panama Papers leak case, notices had been issued to all those whose names had appeared. The minister said Section 138 of the Income Tax Act barred the proceedings of a case to be made public till a case was filed in a court. PTI

Ruckus over killing of cattle traders

The Rajya Sabha witnessed ruckus during zero hour over the killing of two Muslim cattle traders in Jharkand in March. The issue was raised by JD(U)’s  Ghulam Rasool Balyavi who got emotional during the debate. He was supported by Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad who said, “Houses have been burnt, minorities have been beaten up... This is extremely sad.” TNS


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/jammu-kashmir/stop-construction-in-pok-army-to-china/229728.html
Stop construction in PoK: Army to China
Ravi Krishnan Khajuria

Tribune News Service

Jammu, April 29
India has asked China to cease its construction activities in parts of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, the Army said on Friday.

This was disclosed in a written statement issued here today by Northern Command spokesperson Colonel SD Goswami.

He, however, said there had been no instances of incursions by Chinese troops into Indian territory while adding that _there was no proper demarcation of the Line of Actual Control between the two countries.

“There are areas along the border in Ladakh where India and China have differing perceptions of the Line of Actual Control. With both sides undertaking patrolling as per their perception of the Line of Actual Control, transgressions do occur,” read the statement.

“Regarding construction activities in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, the government has seen such reports and has conveyed its concerns to China about its activities _and asked it to cease _such activities,” added Colonel Goswami.

India, it may be stated here, has registered its protest against the $46-billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) that runs through a part of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

In April 2015, China and Pakistan signed an agreement to build the China-Pakistan Economic _Corridor through Gilgit-Baltistan. It will extend up to Gwadar Port in Pakistan and give China access to the Indian Ocean and beyond.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had visited China from _April 17 to April 21 to improve ties between the two countries.

In 2011, then General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Northern Command_Lt Gen KT Parnaik had said the Army had ample proof of the presence of Chinese troops along the Line _of Control between India and Pakistan.

“In fact, a number of times soldiers have spotted Chinese soldiers in bunkers along the Neelam valley in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir near the Gurez sector of north Kashmir,” he had said.

General Parnaik’s statement was substantiated on March 13 this year when Chinese troops and their senior officers were spotted at forward _posts along the Line _of Control on the _Pakistani side opposite the Nowgam sector in north Kashmir.

In December last year, Northern Command chief Lt Gen DS Hooda had visited China to fine-tune Line of Actual Control channels.

While Pakistan and China have been working expeditiously to complete the China-Pakistan _Economic Corridor, at least 70 border roads in Jammu and Kashmir remain incomplete.

These roads, a majority of them in the strategic Ladakh region, were sanctioned in the _last five years.


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/pull-down-adarsh-hc/230042.html
Pull down Adarsh: HC
Seeks action against officials for ignoring irregularities
Shiv Kumar

Tribune News Service

Mumbai, April 29
The Bombay High Court today ordered the demolition of the controversial Adarsh Co-operative Housing Society building at Colaba in Central Mumbai on the grounds that it violated the provisions of the Coastal Regulation Zone Act. The court, however, granted a stay on its order for 12 weeks to allow lawyers representing members of the Adarsh Society to challenge it in the Supreme Court.

A Bench comprising Justices RV More and RG Ketkar also asked the Ministry of Defence to act against its officials for not taking action on irregularities during the construction of the building.

It asked all parties, including the Ministry of Defence and the state government, to restore the plot on which the Adarsh building stood. 

The Ministry of Environment and Forests had on January 16, 2011, ordered that  the building be demolished in three months. However, members of the society moved the Bombay High Court.

The Adarsh Co-operative Housing Society was originally planned as a six-storey building to house women who lost their men in the Kargil war. But in a few years, the building grew in height as politicians, bureaucrats and Army officers jostled for flats.

The scam came to light in November 2010. The then Chief Minister Ashok Chavan had to resign after it was revealed that he had obtained multiple flats in the names of his relatives.


http://english.mathrubhumi.com/news/india/army-continues-to-record-maximum-suicides-77-in-2015-english-news-1.1028322
Army continues to record maximum suicides; 77 in 2015 Army continues to have maximum cases of suicides with 77 being reported in 2015. The numbers ...

Read more at:

http://english.mathrubhumi.com/news/india/army-continues-to-record-maximum-suicides-77-in-2015-english-news-1.1028322
New Delhi: Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar today gave the list of incidents of suicide and fratricide in the defence forces in the last three years....

Read more at:


http://english.mathrubhumi.com/news/india/army-continues-to-record-maximum-suicides-77-in-2015-english-news-1.1028322

Friday, 29 April 2016

From Today's Papers - 29 Apr 2016





















http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/india-denies-visa-to-two-more-chinese-dissidents/229329.html
India denies visa to two more Chinese dissidents
New Delhi, April 28
Even as India today defended its decision to cancel the visa issued to Uyghur activist Dolkun Isa, saying he had been given a tourist visa that did not permit him to attend a conference in Dharamsala, it emerged that the visas to two other Chinese dissidents were also not granted. The duo was supposed to attend the Dharamsala conference.

Lu Jinghua, who was active in the 1989 Tiananmen square protests and figures on a Chinese list of “major criminals”, learnt of the development as she was about to board a New Delhi-bound flight from New York on April 25.

Sources said since Lu Jinghua and Roy Wong both had inconsistency in their documents, visas were not issued to them. — TNS


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/editorials/talking-with-pakistan/229132.html
Talking with Pakistan
Jadhav’s arrest levels the playing field
The government’s almost-impulsive about turns have made its Pakistan policy unpredictable and prone to gaffes. But there is some serious work happening underneath the surface of cultivated indifference and caution. As the India-Pakistan relationship is prone to many missteps, both governments have replicated the technique of springing a meeting from the closing years of the UPA-Zardari governments. This denies spoilers time to activate their standard technique of arranging bomb blasts just before a high-level Indo-Pak meet. The Pakistan Foreign Secretary’s sudden visit to Delhi and his prolonged conversation with his counterpart may be part of this piece just like Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj and National Security Adviser Ajit Doval met their counterparts virtually unannounced.

Then Pathankot happened and the pace slowed down. But it was the result of the continuing conversation that India convinced Pakistan to send a probe team to Pathankot, although the outcome wasn’t what it had wished for. And the arrest of a former Indian Navy officer has diminished India’s moral high horsing. In the eyes of the international community, both seem to be fomenting violent discontent in each other’s land. The separate statements issued at the end of the talk between the Foreign Secretaries reflect this realism in Indo-Pak affairs. India called the talks “frank and constructive”, meaning both sides pulled no punches, and Pakistan highlighted the “cordial environment” which stands for courteous allowance to the other side’s views. What is noteworthy is neither side has criticised the other.

From available indications, the talks might have paved the way for a structured meeting between the Foreign Secretaries. Provided there is no Pathankot or Dinanagar, this could herald the beginning of the composite dialogue, a format that discusses each and every issue of discord. Continued dialogue among officials with adequate political oversight should set the stage for the meeting between the Prime Ministers and Foreign Ministers, respectively, on the sidelines of two international conferences late this year. The Modi government has shown the gumption to take a leap in the dark. The coming days will test its talent to land on its feet.


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/dealings-with-agusta-on-hold-since-july-2014-mod/229321.html
Dealings with Agusta on hold since July 2014: MoD
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 28
The Ministry of Defence today issued a statement saying all procurement from tainted Anglo-Italian helicopter maker AgustaWestland has been put on hold since July 2014 and that the contract to supply 12 VVIP helicopters was terminated in January 2014.

In simple words, the MoD has indicated that the company is facing a ban.

Arun Jaitley of the BJP was the Defence Minister in July 2014 and AK Antony of the Congress was the incumbent in January 2014.

The MoD today said the “publicly available information on the procurement of AgustaWestland helicopters clearly shows that the core issue in the matter is corruption”.

“The present government has taken effective action to bring out the truth and will leave no stone unturned in pursuing all means to bring to justice the corrupt and the wrong-doers in the case. The time taken is largely because some of the key perpetrators of this misdeed are outside the country,” the statement said.

The MoD said questions have been raised on certain trivial technicalities, which appear to be intended to distract attention from the core issue of corruption.

The government, through its order dated July 3, 2014, put on hold all procurement/acquisition cases in the pipeline as regards six companies figuring in the FIR registered by the CBI. The said companies are AgustaWestland International Limited, UK; Finmeccanica, Italy, and its group companies, including subsidiaries and affiliates; IDS, Tunisia; Infotech Design System (IDS), Mauritius; IDS Infotech Limited, Mohali; and Aeromatrix Info Solution Private Limited, Chandigarh. No new capital procurement has been made thereafter from these companies.

The MoD said a joint venture involving AgustaWestland was cleared by the Foreign Investment Promotion Board. The proposal was approved on September 2, 2011, based on an application by Indian Rotorcraft Ltd, a joint venture of Tata Sons with AgustaWestland NV, Netherlands. This was later changed to AgustaWestland SpA, Italy, due to re-organisation within the group.

On February 7, 2012, an industrial licence for the manufacture of helicopters was granted by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion to Indian Rotorcraft Ltd. However, the validity of the licence has since expired.


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/india-gets-its-own-gps/229318.html
India gets _its own GPS
India on Thursday completed its mission for a regional navigational system on a par with US-based GPS with successful launch of IRNSS-1G, the seventh and last in constellation of satellites that make up the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System

When it becomes operational in a month’s time, IRNSS, or ‘desi GPS, would aid terrestrial, aerial, marine navigation, fleet tracking and disaster management. The service can also be integrated with mobile phones in the country

The new GPS will benefit the defence forces, which cannot count on foreign service providers on a long-term basis. The military can use IRNSS to find targets even in the dark or in unknown areas. The US had denied GPS information to India during the Kargil war in 1999


http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/us-wants-a-stronger-indian-military-to-deter-not-provoke-conflict-with-china-mind-the-dangerous-gap/
US wants a stronger Indian military to deter, not provoke, conflict with China
If the United States could flip a switch and make the Indian military more powerful than it is today, it would have every interest in doing so
- See more at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/us-wants-a-stronger-indian-military-to-deter-not-provoke-conflict-with-china-mind-the-dangerous-gap/#sthash.EECmhQ1R.dpuf
If the United States could flip a switch and make the Indian military more powerful than it is today, it would have every interest in doing so. The US has other interests as well, such as maintaining its military edge and ensuring that its “crown jewel” defence technology doesn’t find its way into the hands of adversaries like Russia. But for the foreseeable future, the US has interest in a stronger Indian military. This was not always true. Indeed, this was not the case about 20 years ago. The most significant difference between now and then is the growing capability and assertiveness of the Chinese military. Now, it is very important to be very clear about the very big difference between an interest in a stronger Indian military and an interest in an Indian military that is in conflict with China. America has no interest in the latter. In public, Americans often skirt around the topic of China in discussions of the US-Indian defence partnership. There are a number of good reasons for this, including the fact that this partnership is important for a range of reasons that have nothing to do with China. But one reason that mention of China is avoided is because of concern that public discussion will feed into a false perception that the US is trying to push India into a conflict with China. Unfortunately, ambiguity seems to have fed the Indian public’s anxiety.

So it is important to highlight the widespread consensus among thought leaders in Washington DC that no one seeks a military conflict with China. And we don’t want to see India in a conflict either. In fact, this is precisely the reason why a stronger Indian military is in America’s interest. Relative military weakness is provocative. The trajectory of China’s growing military capabilities threatens to widen the gap between China’s military capabilities and those of India. This is the kind of gap that increases the chance of conflict. And the US and India have an undeniable common interest in trying to prevent it from growing further.

Unfortunately, this common interest is often overshadowed and, instead, there is focus on the “foundational defence agreements”. As someone who worked on these issues while serving in the US government, it’s difficult to understand why this is the case because as Pratap Bhanu Mehta recently noted in this newspaper, these are “prosaic agreements” (‘The American hug’, April 2). They are basic arrangements that facilitate rather than compel military-to-military cooperation and certainly do not “prematurely foreclose” India’s options. They are a far cry from anything approaching a treaty or alliance, which suggests they are widely misunderstood or being criticised for political purposes. I hope that they are signed because they do help facilitate military cooperation, but they will not lead to some kind of military alliance.

Yet, Mehta raises an important topic in his article that warrants a substantive response. He suggests that signing these agreements portends “momentous shifts” in Indian foreign policy and positions India as a “frontline state” on a faultline between the US and China. With all due respect to Mehta, whose scholarship is quite impressive, this is an anachronistic assessment. Today, India is a global power. Even if the US sought to push India into becoming a “frontline state”, America does not and will not have the power to do so. It bears repeating that conflict between India and China isn’t in America’s interest, but even if it was, neither the “foundational agreements” nor anything else can compel India to take actions vis-a-vis China that aren’t in India’s national interest.

Indians should be more confident in the independence of their own government. The Indian government is fully capable of bolstering its defence relationship with the US while maintaining its complete sovereignty. India is a strong country, and the great irony in this debate is that it’s in America’s interest to see it become even stronger.

If the United States could flip a switch and make the Indian military more powerful than it is today, it would have every interest in doing so. The US has other interests as well, such as maintaining its military edge and ensuring that its “crown jewel” defence technology doesn’t find its way into the hands of adversaries like Russia. But for the foreseeable future, the US has interest in a stronger Indian military. This was not always true. Indeed, this was not the case about 20 years ago. The most significant difference between now and then is the growing capability and assertiveness of the Chinese military. Now, it is very important to be very clear about the very big difference between an interest in a stronger Indian military and an interest in an Indian military that is in conflict with China. America has no interest in the latter. In public, Americans often skirt around the topic of China in discussions of the US-Indian defence partnership. There are a number of good reasons for this, including the fact that this partnership is important for a range of reasons that have nothing to do with China. But one reason that mention of China is avoided is because of concern that public discussion will feed into a false perception that the US is trying to push India into a conflict with China. Unfortunately, ambiguity seems to have fed the Indian public’s anxiety.

So it is important to highlight the widespread consensus among thought leaders in Washington DC that no one seeks a military conflict with China. And we don’t want to see India in a conflict either. In fact, this is precisely the reason why a stronger Indian military is in America’s interest. Relative military weakness is provocative. The trajectory of China’s growing military capabilities threatens to widen the gap between China’s military capabilities and those of India. This is the kind of gap that increases the chance of conflict. And the US and India have an undeniable common interest in trying to prevent it from growing further.

Unfortunately, this common interest is often overshadowed and, instead, there is focus on the “foundational defence agreements”. As someone who worked on these issues while serving in the US government, it’s difficult to understand why this is the case because as Pratap Bhanu Mehta recently noted in this newspaper, these are “prosaic agreements” (‘The American hug’, April 2). They are basic arrangements that facilitate rather than compel military-to-military cooperation and certainly do not “prematurely foreclose” India’s options. They are a far cry from anything approaching a treaty or alliance, which suggests they are widely misunderstood or being criticised for political purposes. I hope that they are signed because they do help facilitate military cooperation, but they will not lead to some kind of military alliance.

Yet, Mehta raises an important topic in his article that warrants a substantive response. He suggests that signing these agreements portends “momentous shifts” in Indian foreign policy and positions India as a “frontline state” on a faultline between the US and China. With all due respect to Mehta, whose scholarship is quite impressive, this is an anachronistic assessment. Today, India is a global power. Even if the US sought to push India into becoming a “frontline state”, America does not and will not have the power to do so. It bears repeating that conflict between India and China isn’t in America’s interest, but even if it was, neither the “foundational agreements” nor anything else can compel India to take actions vis-a-vis China that aren’t in India’s national interest.

Indians should be more confident in the independence of their own government. The Indian government is fully capable of bolstering its defence relationship with the US while maintaining its complete sovereignty. India is a strong country, and the great irony in this debate is that it’s in America’s interest to see it become even stronger.
- See more at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/us-wants-a-stronger-indian-military-to-deter-not-provoke-conflict-with-china-mind-the-dangerous-gap/#sthash.EECmhQ1R.dpuf


http://indianexpress.com/article/india/army-officers-get-fake-messages-advisory-issued-pcdao-2773809/
Army officers get fake messages; advisory issued by PCDA(O)
Several officers of the Indian Army have received fake messages through phone messaging applications informing them that the PCDA(O), has developed an app and the officers could access their accounts through the link in the messages.
- See more at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/army-officers-get-fake-messages-advisory-issued-pcdao-2773809/#sthash.LSXyeF1V.dpuf
In a suspected case of cyber security threat, several officers of the Indian Army have received fake messages through phone messaging applications informing them that the Principal Controller of Defence Accounts (Officers), PCDA(O), has developed an app and the officers could access their accounts through the link in the messages.

The PCDA(O) has now issued an advisory to the officers not to open these links and clarified that no such app has been developed by the office.

The office of PCDA(O), which is located in Pune, caters to over 46,000 serving Army officers, right from the Chief of Army Staff to officers of the rank of a lieutenant, which is the first rank for the commissioned officers. According to its own website, the office looks after the pre-audit and payment of pay and allowances and all claims of officers of Indian Army.
- See more at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/army-officers-get-fake-messages-advisory-issued-pcdao-2773809/#sthash.LSXyeF1V.dpuf
Incidentally, the website of PCDA (O) was hacked in April last year.

Defence sources said that since over a month till 15 days ago, several Army officers, including seniors, received messages through the phone messaging services like WhatsApp and also through messaging services of social networking sites and mails that the PCDA (O) had developed an app through which they could access information about their pay and allowance.

“When these links were checked, it came to light that the browser was redirecting the user to a suspicious link. This was a potential cyber security threat, which could have led to stealing of personal data of the officers, including their usernames and passwords for the PCDA (O) website,” said an officer on the condition of anonymity.

“Such intrusions can potentially be a threat to the data on the server of the website. The PCDA (O) has not just the information about salaries but also of the allowances. The information on these allowances can reveal where the officer is currently posted and what exactly is the profile, and even his personal details about home and loans,” the officer said.

The PCDA (O) website has now posted advisory messages which read, “PCDA(O) has not developed any APP or application for any service or communication. Hence, do not respond to any unauthorised e-mail communication and do not download any such application. PCDA(O) is not forwarding any link either to officer’s email IDs or to mobile phones. Hence, officers are advised not to respond to or click any such link even if it is received in the name of PCDA(O).”

Principal Control of Defence Accounts, Dr G D Pungle, said, “These advisory messages have been posted because we are very cautious about the security of the data. It is a continuous effort to take all the care so that information of our clients is safe.”

In April last year, the website of PCDA(O) had come under cyber attack by alleged hackers from Pakistan, who had posted obscene photos on the website. The website was shut down for a while before it was restored with advanced cyber security checks.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has, in the past, stated that cyber security was one of the key concerns for Indian defence forces.
- See more at:


http://indianexpress.com/article/india/army-officers-get-fake-messages-advisory-issued-pcdao-2773809/#sthash.LSXyeF1V.dpuf

Thursday, 28 April 2016

From Today's Papers - 28 Apr 2016






















http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/pak-nuke-base-near-amritsar/228873.html
Pak nuke base near Amritsar
Imagery of facility near Gujranwala appears on social media
Vijay Mohan

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 27
Details of a recently established Pakistani military complex, purported to house tactical nuclear missiles, close to the international border in Punjab have emerged on the social media.

Overhead imagery of the site, at Rahwali Cantonment near Gujranwala, reveals two transport-erector-launcher vehicles, assessed to be those of the Nasr  short-range missile, along with support vehicles laid out for inspection.

The site is 70 km from the international border and 100 km from both Amritsar and Jammu, lying in the trough of the strategically vital Shakargarh bulge that had witnessed key battles in 1965 and 1971. Along this bulge lies the vital link to Jammu and Kashmir, with the National Highway passing close to the border.

Images, dated January 27, along with an assessment, have been posted by an officer specialising in imagery interpretation on his personal page. The well-fortified complex, which includes hardened shelters with blast doors, garages, ammunition bunkers, administrative and support areas, is believed to have been constructed in August 2014.

Experts feel a missile base close to the border indicates deployment of tactical or “low yield” nuclear weapons that could be employed to counter an Indian onslaught even if the weapons’ impact area lies inside Pakistani territory. The very brief flight time of short range missiles gives very little reaction time, making it difficult to counter them.

In November last year, Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary  for the first time acknowledged Pakistan’s plans to use low-yield nukes in a bid to forestall Indian advances across the border. Pakistan claims to have several short range missiles that can be used to deliver tactical warheads, besides longer range ballistic missiles to target strategic assets.


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/jammu-kashmir/pathribal-case-hc-dismisses-petition-for-further-trial/228584.html
Pathribal case: HC dismisses petition for further trial
Samaan Lateef

Tribune News Service

Srinagar April 27
The Jammu and Kashmir High court on Wednesday dismissed the petition seeking resumption of jurisdiction of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court into the Pathribal fake encounter case, saying it could not adjudicate in the matters of the Supreme Court.

Court of Justice Tashi Rabastan said, “The writ petition is not maintainable and liable to be dismissed.” However, the court said the petitioners were at liberty to avail themselves of appropriate remedy, if any, available under law.

The Pathribal fake encounter in which five civilians were shot dead and dubbed as the militants responsible for the massacre of Chittisinghpora Sikhs in March 2000 was taken by the Army court from the trial court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Srinagar, on June 27, 2012.

The CBI indicted the five Army personnel, including a Major General and two Colonels, in the case and filed murder charges against them in 2006 before the CJM, Srinagar.

However, the Army filed a petition in the Supreme Court challenging the jurisdiction of the CBI to file a chargesheet against the Army men protected under Para 7 of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act.

The Supreme Court in May 2012 directed the Army authorities to decide whether officers accused of a fake encounter in Pathribal in J&K should be tried by court-martial proceedings or by regular criminal courts. The Army opted for court martial, which on January 23, 2014, exonerated all accused officials for lack of evidence.

The families of five victims filed a fresh petition before the High Court, seeking resumption of jurisdiction of the CBI court and grant of sanction from the Central government within four weeks. They also said the Army had “not complied” with the SC directions by choosing to conduct the summary of evidence instead of court-martial proceedings.

After hearing the writ petition the High Court said, “The SC has given liberty to the Army to take decision as regards to convening of the court martial or adjudication of trial by the criminal court. The Army opted to try the case by court martial. Once an option or liberty was given by the SC, thereby deciding the matter as regards to trial to be conducted by court martial or criminal court, the same issue is not permissible to be opened and taken up again and again.”


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/world/un-chief-urges-nations-to-ratify-ctbt/228559.html
UN chief urges nations to ratify CTBT
Vienna, April 27
UN chief Ban Ki-moon called today for the US, China and other nuclear-armed states to end the ‘madness’ of atomic testing by finally ratifying the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty, which turns 20 this year.

“I call on remaining states, the eight remaining states, to sign and ratify the treaty without further delay,” Ban said in Vienna at an event marking the anniversary.

The CTBT, which was adopted by the UN General Assembly in September 1996, bans all nuclear explosions. It has been signed by 183 states and ratified by 164 including Russia, France and Britain.

But to enter in force, the treaty needs 44 particular “nuclear technology holder” states to ratify it, eight of whom have yet to do so. These eight include the other six in the nuclear club — the US, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel — as well as Iran and Egypt. — AFP


http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/world/us-pak-struck-a-deal-on-al-qaida-chief-osama/228562.html
US, Pak ‘struck a deal’ on Al-Qaida chief Osama
Washington, April 27
Pakistan helped the US get Osama bin Laden, a US investigative journalist has said. "More than ever," said the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh on Tuesday when asked if he believes Pakistan helped the US get Al-Qaida group founder Osama bin Laden.

When Hersh made this claim in an article published last year, the White House rejected the story as false.

Hersh repeated the claim in his new book “The Killing of Osama bin Laden” published this week, insisting he was right, Dawn online reported.

Since last year, Hersh said, his belief has cemented as the journalist found new evidences, and was deceptive of the US' official account of how bin Laden was found in his compound.

Hersh said Pakistan had detained bin Laden in 2006 and kept him in prison with the backing of Saudi Arabia.

The US and Pakistan struck a deal that the US would raid bin Laden's compound but make it look as if Islamabad was unaware.

“Pakistan is in constant alert because of India. Their radars are watching, their F16s are up all the time," said Hersh, arguing that it was not possible for US helicopters to enter Abbottabad without alerting the Pakistanis. Hersh earlier said the US and Pakistan had jointly created the myth “we (US) discovered” where Osama bin Laden was living.

“What I know is ... in August of 2010, a Pakistani colonel ... came into our embassy, went to the then CIA Station Chief Jonathan Bank, and said: ‘We’ve had bin Laden for four years’.”

“The Pakistani intelligence picked him (bin Laden) in the Hindukush area, built the compound in Abbottabad and put him there,” Hersh said.

According to Hersh, when the CIA asked Pakistan to make the May 2, 2011, operation at bin Laden's compound a surprise raid, they agreed “because they had kept bin Laden in custody without telling us”. “I wrote the name of Jonathan Bank but he did not attack me for doing this. He did not contradict my story. If there is one guy who can end my story, it is him,” Hersh said. — IANS


http://www.dailyexcelsior.com/army-commanders-review-chinas-theatre-command-brief-govt/
Army Commanders review China’s ‘Theatre Command’; to brief Govt
xcelsior Correspondent
JAMMU, Apr 26: After China formed `Theatre Command’ a couple of months back by re-structuring military commands and giving joint control to one Chief Military Commander, Indian Army has also been asked to study the Chinese plan for long term integration of three Services-Army, Indian Air Force and Navy-to have joint commands.
Official sources told the Excelsior that this was one of the major issues being discussed and debated in the ongoing conference of top Army Commanders, which began yesterday in New Delhi and will continue till April 30. The issue was taken up in the Army Commanders’ conference on the directions of the Defence Ministry.
Only a couple of months back, China had taken the world including its neighbours by surprise by re-structuring its military commands and converting them into five `Theatre Commands’ with control of one Senior Commander over one Command.
Sources said the Defence Ministry has also asked the Army Commanders, who were debating crucial strategic issues during their six days long conference, to study the Chinese re-structuring plan and whether it was feasible and beneficial in India. Accordingly, they said, the issue is being discussed threadbare and the impact of having joint commanding on Army, IAF and Navy.
“Though the proposal can’t be implemented in India in short term, it was being studied for long-term plan and whether moves can be set afoot for its implementation,” sources said.
The Indian Air Force and Navy, during their recent conferences had studied the proposal and it was now the turn of Army to discuss and debate it thoroughly. Later, the three Service chiefs would discuss the proposal with Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar before the Government of India takes a decision on whether to go for re-structuring or not.
According to sources, after the conference of Army Commanders is over on April 30, the three Service chiefs and other top Commanders of Army, IAF and Navy will sit together and discuss issue threadbare among themselves.
As per the proposal, the Joint Command will place resources of Army, Navy and IAF at the command of Senior Military Commander, which will be called the `Theatre Command’. Presently, India has one Joint Command in Andaman and Nicobar islands.
Sources said the Central Government especially the Defence Ministry was keenly following each and every step taken by the Chinese Government in their military preparations as it didn’t want to lag much behind the neighbour in matching their strength though it has admitted that it did lag behind China in infrastructure along borders and other strategic assets as the previous Government never thought on this front.
Recently, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval had visited China and met their counterparts and other senior Chinese and military leadership to discuss bilateral and defence ties and boundary agreement. Though the two countries have near normal relations between them, India didn’t want to take any chances in strengthening its forces to match the Chinese strength, sources said.
Before the reshuffle, China had seven military area commands headquartered in Shenyang, Beijing, Jinan, Nanjing, Guangzhou, Chengdu and Lanzhou. The five theater commands, under the administration of the Chief Military Commander (CMC), were formed based on the functions and organs of the former military area commands, with the functions of command and logistics support improved.

Sources said China has not kept its Joint Military Commands as secret but made them public as soon as they were formed after integration of Army, Navy and Air Force. No other neighbouring country of India including Pakistan has such Commands.

 

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