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India

The two major disputed borders India has are with China and Pakistan. With Pakistan, the disputed border falls in Jammu and Kashmir, a legacy of the 1948 war. When India and Pakistan agreed to a ceasefire on January 1, 1949, the two sides agreed to a ceasefire line (CFL). This line was not just marked on a map but was also agreed upon by the two sides on the ground with a joint survey by the two armies.

 

The Trump administration’s decision to not follow through with a proposed change in the H-1B regime has brought cheer to between 500,000 and 750,000 Indians, mostly technology workers, and their families in the US. It has also come as a relief to the Indian government which had expressed concern when news of the plan broke.

 

What awaits the Asia-Pacific in 2018? Prospects appear, if anything, bleaker than was the case in 2017. More disorder, coming with increasing signs of a breakdown in inter and intra-state relations, is perhaps on the horizon. The Asian region is nowhere near achieving the kind of equilibrium that the Concert of Europe brought to 19th century Europe.

 

India and Pakistan have held no substantive talks for close to a decade even as their relations have been buffeted by one storm after another, including a string of cross-border terror attacks that put paid to efforts by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his former Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif to restore a semblance of normalcy to ties.

 

The call made by the parliamentary committee on the ministry of external affairs to both India and Pakistan last Friday to impart fresh impetus to bilateral ties with “concrete, comprehensive and long-lasting dialogue process”, and its urging of both countries “to engage afresh and proceed with a step-wise process to dialogue, moving from peripheral to core issues” is a step in the right direction.

 

The most remarkable achievement in terms of economic progress of the past quarter-century has been China. The People’s Republic of China cast of years of Mao’s idiosyncratic policies and opened up.

 

The changes proposed in the H-1B visa regulations by the US department of homeland security will have grave implications for Indians, including techies. How many people will be affected if the changes are brought in is still unclear, but at least five lakh Indians waiting for US permanent residency could be sent home in the worst-case scenario.

 

The changes proposed in the H-1B visa regulations by the US department of homeland security will have grave implications for Indians, including techies. How many people will be affected if the changes are brought in is still unclear, but at least five lakh Indians waiting for US permanent residency could be sent home in the worst-case scenario.

 

The adverse effects of two consecutive shocks—demonetisation and goods and services tax (GST)—have receded. The real economy is poised for a convincing recovery from the third quarter of FY18. Nevertheless, headwinds are clearly visible on several fronts.

 

Actionable intelligence is the key to the success of any counter-terrorist operation. A combination of strong intelligence with command and control improve the chances of neutralising a terror strike with minimum collateral damage. If any of these elements is lacking, though, such strikes could succeed.

 


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