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Date: 07 November 2020

India-Maldives Relations

  • Indian Ocean itself is a key highway for global energy and trade flows, the importance of Maldives for international sea lanes of communication is vital.
  • Maldives has one of the largest exclusive economic zones in the world
  • It is positioned like a ‘toll gate’ between the western Indian Ocean chokepoints of the Gulf of Aden/Strait of Hormuz and the eastern Indian Ocean chokepoint of the Strait of Malacca on the other.

  • Spectrum of India-Maldives relations have linguistic, cultural, religious and commercial
  • India was among the first countries to recognise Maldives in 1965.
  • In 1988, India demonstrated its unconditional commitment to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Maldives by lending prompt assistance to defeat the attempted overthrow of the then legitimate government.
  • Tsunami struck in 2004
  • Water crisis in 2014
  • Since the assumption of the office of President by Ibrahim Mohamed Solih in November 2018, relations have been taken to the next level.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended the inauguration of President Solih and established a personal rapport with the Maldivian leader.
  • President Solih reciprocated in kind when he paid his first overseas visit to India in December 2018.
  • During this visit, India offered Maldives a financial assistance package of $1.4 billion and 1,000 scholarships over the next five years.
  • PM Modi, after reassuming office in June 2019, again paid a state visit to Maldives in a clear demonstration of the importance of the country.
  • Absolute sync: ‘Neighbourhood First&India First
  • One of the key areas where India is assisting Maldives is connectivity and civilian infrastructure.
  • One of the key areas where India is assisting Maldives is connectivity and civilian infrastructure.
  • Apart from seven major projects under Indian line of credit (LoC) of $800 million, India has announced another LOC of $400 million and a special grant of $100 million for the Greater Male Connectivity Project, seeking to link Male to three other islands through a series of bridges, causeways and roads.
  • The project will provide a major fillip to the Maldivian economy.
  • The external affairs ministry deserves credit for speedy implementation and follow-up of projects and commitments made at the highest level.
  • Maldives’ own objectives in the Indian Ocean are not very different from our own policy of Security and Growth for All in the Region.
  • India’s strong commitment to be a net maritime security provider in the region can be dovetailed with Maldives own desire for maritime security.
  • Thanks to the people-centric projects aided by India such as capacity building, ITEC programmes and the crucial health sector, India is seen by the ordinary people of Maldives as a benevolent and friendly power.
  • The importance of this aspect cannot be overemphasised.

Alimony guidelines

  • Girls are married off early and bear children long before they should.
  • This triggers a state of poor maternal health and is one of the root causes of high levels of child stunting and wasting in India.
  • There is also the possibility of a marriage not working out for varied reasons, leaving the girl or young woman in extreme distress because often she is not financially independent.
  • Parliament and the courts have persistently enacted legislation to give women better rights.
  • Article 15(3), which states ‘nothing in this article shall prevent the State from making any special provision for women and children’,

read together with

  • Article 39, which directs state policy towards equal pay and opportunities for both men and women, and protecting the health of women and children, are two key constitutional safeguards.
  • On Wednesday, the Supreme Court leaned on these two Articles, and a host of other laws, while hearing a dispute between a Mumbai-based couple, and set down comprehensive guidelines on alimony.
  • The court ruled that an abandoned wife and children will be entitled to ‘maintenancefrom the date she applies for it in a court of law.
  • 67-page judgment outlined specifics to follow for family courts, magistrates and lower courts on alimony cases.
  • Reasonable Needs” of a wife and dependent children
  • Her educational qualification
  • Whether she has an independent source of income, and if she does, if it is sufficient
  • Given the large and growing percentage of matrimonial litigation, some clarity was necessary.
  • Cases are known to drag on and acquire cobwebs, worsening the misery for vulnerable women.

New dawn

  • Joe Biden has seized the lead in the Republican-leaning swing State of Georgia, and in Pennsylvania, and winning them would guarantee his victory in the 2020 U.S. presidential election.
  • Mr. Biden is now poised to garner more than 270 votes in the Electoral College, with leads in Georgia, Pennsylvania, Nevada and Arizona, and wins in any two of them or in Pennsylvania alone should be enough.
  • However, an obstacle in his path to the Oval Office comes from the scattershot legal action by the Trump campaign to stop the counting of votes after polls closed, on the unfounded allegation that mail-in votes were subject to large-scale fraud.
  • Under the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, a historically unprecedented surge in mail-in voting contributed to a high overall turnout, likely in excess of 68%.
  • Mr. Biden will have to make plans on an emergency footing, in the realms of health care and macroeconomic policy.
  • Also he has to do something about the painful divisions that have led to the emergence of two Americas, with radically divergent views on everything from tolerating pluralism to embracing globalisation.
  • On COVID-19, the U.S. will soon touch a grim milestone — 10 million cases; more than 230,000 fatalities have been recorded.
  • This makes it imperative that the next President of the country respects science and advocates the use of masks, social distancing, and lockdowns.
  • If the U.S. is to have a hope of holding onto its superpower status, the mammoth task of bridge-building across the bitter polarisation of the partisan divide must be the highest priority for the 46th President.

NEWS

  • Voting for seventy eight seats in third and final phase of Bihar assembly elections begins
  • India and Italy sign 15 agreements in various sectors; Reaffirm commitment to strengthen cooperation against common global challenges
  • PM Modi to address 51st Annual Convocation Ceremony of IIT Delhi through video conferencing
  • Country's COVID-19 recovery rate reaches 92.32 per cent
  • ISRO to launch country's latest all-weather earth observation satellite this afternoon
  • Central Govt working on all fronts to mitigate air pollution: Environment Minister
  • PM Modi to flag off Ro-Pax service between Hazira-Ghogha in Gujarat on Sunday
  • Govt working towards making India a global automobile manufacturing hub: Nitin Gadkari
  • Ministry of MSME warns public against cheating in name of PMEGP Scheme
  • US Elections: Democrats gain lead in traditionally Republican stronghold State of Georgia
  • Foreign Secy Harsh Vardhan Shringla will be on 2-day visit to Maldives
  • New air service started between India and Bangladesh
  • US Elections 2020: Democrats gain lead in Pennsylvania
  • Rohingya Citizenship issue matter of domestic law of 1982: Myanmar Army Chief