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17th January – Editorials/Opinions Analyses


  1. Talking of Kashmir
  2. The perils of RBI’s fixation on inflation
  3. Mob Lynchings: Need of the laws
  4. Relation between loss of access to groundwater and decline in agricultural income


Why in news?

Since the government’s decision on abrogation of Article 370 in August 2019, China raised the issue of Kashmir at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) multiple times, prompting a protest from New Delhi.

What is India’s stand?

  • India’s case rests on the 1972 Shimla accord, where India and Pakistan agreed to resolve the Kashmir issue bilaterally. 
  • China’s repeated raising of Kashmir since August 2019, which includes an aborted attempt in December, is unconstructive and will impact the India-China bilateral relationship if it continues.

Chinese domestic issues..

  • Given that New Delhi has refrained from raising similar issues over Tibet, Xinjiang or Hong Kong, it is unfair on the part of Beijing to take its concerns to the international stage
  • At some point, the government must push for normalisation of ties with Pakistan as well as for the lifting of restrictions in Jammu and Kashmir.


Importance of banks

  • It was recognised that when private commercial banks fail, whether due to malfeasance or misjudgment, they not only harm their trusting depositors, they can also take down with them the rest of the financial System.
  • This gave rise to the RBI, the regulating authority for banks.
  • With the rise of neoliberalism, the central tenet of which is that markets should be given free play, the regulatory role of central banks took a back seat.
  • They came to be primarily mandated with inflation control
  • In later years inflation targeting was made the sole objective of monetary policy.
  • The RBI was permitted to exceed or fall short of a targeted inflation rate of 4% by a margin of 2 percentage points.
  • This was hailed by the government as the adoption of the ‘modern monetary policy framework’ by India, and came into effect from the year 2016-­17

Consequences of shifting roles of RBI

  • In 2018, within three years of the adoption of inflation targeting goal, a crisis engulfed IL&FS, a non­banking financial company in the infrastructure space
  • It defaulted on several of its obligations, including repayment of bank loans and the redemption of commercial paper.
  • Bank run on the Punjab and Maharashtra Co­operative Bank had to be averted by imposing withdrawal limits


Why in news?

  • The spate of incidents of lynching over the past few years has led to a heightened sense of insecurity among the marginalized communities.
  • No data has been compiled by the NCRB of the number of cases of lynching in the country since 2015 for reasons unknown.

SC on mob lynching

  • In 2018, the Supreme Court described lynching as a “horrendous act of mobocracy”.
  • The Court directed the Centre and State governments to frame laws specifically to deal with the crime of lynching and laid down certain guidelines to be incorporated in these laws

State laws

  • In this backdrop, the Manipur government came up first with its Bill against lynching in 2018, incorporating some logical and relevant clauses.
  • The Bill specified that there would be nodal officers in each district to control such crimes
  • The Rajasthan government passed a bill against lynching in August 2019 which reported highest number of mob lynching cases since 2014


Focus: Mains- GS 3 Agriculture

Why in news?

  • One of the first evidences of the medium to long-term impact of large scale, permanent environmental deterioration on rural populations in developing countries – The paper, ‘Way Down in the Hole: Adaptation to Long-Term Water Loss in Rural India’, was published in the American Economic Review
  • The analysis is based on villages in Karnataka where groundwater is a vital source of irrigation but has been depleted by a combination of a prolonged, multi-year drought, and intensive extraction.
  • 102 villages selected from 31 sub districts in eastern part of Karnataka were the base of the study


  • The issue is complex one as the groundwater resources in the area are limited
  • Water conservation needs to incentivized
  • Adoption of highly water efficient irrigation technology is the need of the hour
  • Recharge of groundwater
  • Creation and rehabilitation of existing surface water sources

Off farm employment strategies suggested

  • Developing industrial location around the farms
  • Skilled jobs in manufacturing and services sector
  • Vocational training and skill development course to be offered in such areas
April 2024