UPSC Daily Current Affairs : 03-July-2020

Topic Covered :

  1. DAC approves capital acquisition of various platforms & equipment worth Rs 38,900 crore

  2. Myanmar calls out China for arming terror groups, asks world to help

  3. Marines should be tried in Italy for Indian fishermen’s killing: Hague court



DAC APPROVES CAPITAL ACQUISITION OF VARIOUS PLATFORMS & EQUIPMENT WORTH RS 38,900 CRORE

Why in news?

  • In the current situation and the need to strengthen the Armed Forces for the defence of our borders and in line with Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s clarion call for ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’, Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) in its meeting of today held under the chairmanship of Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh accorded approval for capital acquisition of various platforms and equipment required by the Indian Armed Forces.


Highlights:

  • The indigenous content in some of these projects is up to 80 per cent of the project cost.

  • A large number of these projects have been made possible due to Transfer of Technology (ToT) by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) to the indigenous industry.

  • These include Pinaka ammunitions, BMP armament upgrades and software defined radios for the Indian Army, Long Range Land Attack Cruise Missile Systems and Astra Missiles for the Indian Navy and Indian Air Force (IAF).

  • The cost of these design and development proposals is in the range of Rs 20,400 crore. 

  • Further, addressing the long felt need of the IAF to increase its fighter squadrons, the DAC also approved the proposal for procurement of 21 MIG-29 along with upgradation of existing 59 MIG-29 aircraft and procurement of 12 Su-30 MKI aircraft.

  • While the MIG 29 procurement and upgradation from Russia is estimated to cost Rs 7,418 crore, the Su-30 MKI will be procured from Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) at an estimated cost of Rs 10,730 crore.


Source : PIB ( https://pib.gov.in/PressReleseDetail.aspx?PRID=1636011 )



MYANMAR CALLS OUT CHINA FOR ARMING TERROR GROUPS, ASKS WORLD TO HELP

Why in news?

  • Myanmar suspects that China was trying to use terror groups as a bargaining chip for smooth implementation of Belt and Road Initiative projects.


Highlights:

  • Myanmar, China’s closest ally in southeast Asia, has pointed fingers at Beijing for arming insurgent groups with sophisticated weapons and sought international cooperation to suppress rebel groups.

  • The army chief was referring to Arakan Army (AA) and Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), terrorist organisations active in the Rakhine State in western Myanmar that borders China.

  • It is unusual for the Myanmar leadership to point fingers at China. But this isn’t the first time that Naypyitaw had alluded to the Chinese connection.

  • When the Myanmar military busted a huge cache of weapons including surface-to-air missiles - each costing between USD 70,000 and 90,000 - from the banned Ta’ang National Liberation Army in November 2019, the military had underlined the Chinese connection to the weapons. 

  • China, for the record, denies that it supplies weapons to armed rebel groups in Myanmar but such denials are often treated with scepticism in Myanmar.

  • There has been a view in Naypyitaw that China was using its influence with the terror groups as a bargaining chip for smooth implementation of Belt and Road Initiative projects.


Source : Hindustan Times ( https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/myanmar-calls-out-china-for-arming-terror-groups-asks-world-to-help/story-fzb8ADXt1VgS9ofZMMWdWO.html )



MARINES SHOULD BE TRIED IN ITALY FOR INDIAN FISHERMEN’S KILLING: HAGUE COURT

Why in news?

  • The Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in The Hague has handed a mixed verdict on the killing of two Indian fishermen by Italian marines off the coast of Kerala over eight years back.


Highlights:

  • Delivering its judgment, it agreed with the Indian contention that the marines had broken the freedom of navigation aspect of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and, therefore, the kin of the killed fishermen were entitled to compensation.

  • Italy had offered Rs 1 crore compensation in 2012 to the family of each of the killed fishermen.

  • India and Italy will now have to mutually agree on the blood-money and can approach the PCA in case of disagreement.

  • It also agreed with the Italian argument that the two Italian marines should be tried in Italy and asked the Indian authorities to close the criminal case against them. 

  • The case had rocked the country’s politics when it emerged in 2012.

  • The marines were on duty on the merchant ship as part of an anti-piracy posse due to rampant hijacking of ships at that time by Somalian pirates. They had fired on a fishing boat off the coast of Kerala, fearing that pirates were trying to attack the merchant vessel.

  • It remained unexplained why Italian military personnel did not know they were hundreds of kms away from piracy-prone areas.

  • The arbitration proceedings were instituted after Italy said India did not have the jurisdiction to try the marines but it was open to arbitration.


Source : Tribune India ( https://www.tribuneindia.com/news/nation/marines-should-be-tried-in-italy-for-indian-fishermens-killing-hague-court-107646 )


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