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NEW DELHI: India has called upon Pakistan to release and repatriate its national Kulbhushan Jadhav following International Court of Justice’s judgment.

Making a statement in the Rajya Sabha, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said the ICJ’s judgment is not only a vindication for India and Jadhav but for all those who believe in the rule of law and the sanctity of international treaties.

He asserted that Jadhav is innocent of the charges made against him and his forced confession without legal representation and due process will not change this reality.

The Minister said the ICJ pronounced that Pakistan had breached relevant obligations under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relation.

He said the Court also declared that Pakistan is under an obligation to inform Jadhav without further delay of his rights and to provide India consular access to him.

The Minister said the government will vigorously continue its efforts to ensure his safety and well being as well as his early return to India.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar’s statement pertaining to Kulbhushan Jadhav held in illegal confinement in Pakistan was made in Lok Sabha also.

The External Affairs minister read out his written reply in both the Houses today.

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NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court is likely to peruse today a report on the progress of mediation in Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case in Ayodhya.

A five-judge Constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, had last week sought a report on the issue and said that a day-to-day hearing may commence from 25th July, if the court decides to conclude the mediation proceedings.

The bench had requested former apex court judge Justice FMI Kalifulla, Chairperson of the three-member mediation panel, to apprise it by 18th July the progress of mediation till date and its present stage.

It passed the order while hearing an application filed by a legal heir of one of the original litigants, Gopal Singh Visharad, seeking a judicial decision on the dispute and conclusion of the mediation process, alleging that nothing much was happening there.

It had said that the court would pass appropriate orders on 18th July after perusing the report filed by the mediation committee.

The top court had fixed the seat for the mediation process in Faizabad of Uttar Pradesh, around 7 km from Ayodhya, and said adequate arrangements, including those related to the venue of the mediation, place of stay of the mediators, their security and travel, should be arranged forthwith by the state government so that the proceedings could commence immediately.

The bench was earlier told by Hindu bodies, except the Nirmohi Akhara, and the Uttar Pradesh government that they were not in favour of the court’s suggestion for mediation. The Muslim bodies had supported the proposal.

Fourteen appeals have been filed in the apex court against the 2010 Allahabad High Court judgment, delivered in four civil suits, that the 2.77-acre land in Ayodhya be partitioned equally among the three parties — the Sunni Waqf Board, the Nirmohi Akhara and Ram Lalla.

On December 6, 1992, the Babri Masjid, constructed at the disputed site in the 16th century by Shia Muslim Mir Baqi, was demolished.

The panel, also comprising spiritual guru and founder of the Art of Living Foundation Sri Sri Ravishankar and senior advocate and renowned mediator Sriram Panchu, was earlier granted time till 15th August by the apex court for completion of mediation after its earlier report had said that the mediators were optimistic about an amicable solution.

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TABOR (Czech Republic): Star Indian sprinter Hima Das clinched her fourth gold in a fortnight as she won the 200m race with a creditable timing in the Tabor Athletics Meet in the Czech Republic yesterday.

Hima won the race in 23.25 seconds, which had a mediocre field with most of the competitors representing clubs of the Czech Republic.

Hima’s compatriot VK Vismaya was second with a season of best 23.43 seconds.

Hima has a 200m personal best of 23.10 seconds. This was 19-year-old Hima’s fourth gold since July 2 when she ran her first competitive race in Europe.

In men’s 400m, Muhammad Anas won in 45.40 seconds, while compatriots Tom Noah Nirmal came second with a season-best effort of 46.59 seconds. KS Jeevan was third with a timing of 46.60 seconds and MP Jabir finished fourth in 47.16 seconds.

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THE HAGUE (Netherlands): In a big win for India, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled on Wednesday that Pakistan must review the death sentence of Kulbhushan Jadhav.

Kulbhushan Jadhav’s death sentence “should remain suspended until Pakistan effectively reviews and reconsiders the conviction and sentence,” said the UN court, agreeing with India’s stand that Pakistan had violated the Vienna Convention by denying consular access to Jadhav after his conviction in a “farcical” closed trial.

PRESS RELEASE: the #ICJ finds that Pakistan has acted in breach of the obligations incumbent on it under Article 36 of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations in the Jadhav case (#India v. #Pakistan) https://t.co/wouIE7ZbIL pic.twitter.com/AQCiQlNMDJ

— CIJ_ICJ (@CIJ_ICJ) July 17, 2019

India has contended that it had not been informed of Jadhav’s detention until long after his arrest and that Pakistan had failed to inform the accused of his rights.

India further alleged that in violation of the Vienna Convention the authorities of Pakistan had denied India its right of consular access to Jadhav, despite repeated requests.

Subsequently, on May 18, 2017, a 10-member bench of the ICJ restrained Pakistan from executing Jadhav till the adjudication of the case.

Key Points of the ICJ Verdict:

(a) The UN court said, “a continued stay of execution constitutes an indispensable condition for the effective review and reconsideration of the conviction and sentence of Jadhav.”  The President of the Court Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf read out the verdict in The Hague.

(b) The world court said Pakistan had not informed Jadhav about his rights.  “Pakistan deprived India of the right to communicate with and have access to Mr Kulbhushan Sudhir Jadhav, to visit him in detention and to arrange for his legal representation,” the UN court noted. There was a three-week delay in informing India about Jadhav’s arrest, said the judge.

(c) The verdict was 15 to one in favour of India; the lone dissenter was the judge from Pakistan. Even the judge from China supported India, which can be a significant diplomatic pressure point for Islamabad.

(d) PM Modi, welcoming the verdict, tweeted: “Truth and justice have prevailed. Congratulations to the ICJ for a verdict based on extensive study of facts. I am sure Kulbhushan Jadhav will get justice. Our Government will always work for the safety and welfare of every Indian.”

(e) “We note that the Court has directed that Pakistan is under an obligation to inform Jadhav without further delay of his rights and to provide Indian consular officers access to him…We expect Pakistan to implement the directive immediately,” said foreign ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar.

(f) Harish Salve, who was India’s advocate at the ICJ, said if the trial by Pakistan isn’t fair, India can always go back to the world court. “If the ICJ verdict is disobeyed, we can take measures including sanctions. I’m sure Pakistan won’t go that way. At least I hope so… If the trial by Pakistan isn’t fair, we can go back to ICJ.”

(g) The court refused to annul Jadhav’s death sentence or order his release and safe passage to India.

(h) 49-year-old Jadhav was arrested by Pakistan in March 2016 and accused of espionage, a charge India has rubbished. A year later, he was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court. Denying India’s request for access to Jadhav, Pakistan repeatedly said New Delhi only wanted the information gathered by “its spy”. A month after the former officer’s death sentence, India took Pakistan to the world court, and the execution was put on hold in May 2017.

(i) Pakistan claims its security forces had arrested Mr Jadhav from Balochistan province on March 3, 2016, after he entered the country from Iran. India asserted that he was kidnapped from Iran, where he had business interests after retiring from the Navy.

(j) The global court has no means to enforce its rulings, which are final and without appeal.

India Welcomes The ICJ Verdict:

India has hailed the verdict of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the case relating to Indian national Kulbushan Jadhav.

The Hague-based ICJ stayed the death sentence awarded to Kulbushan Jadhav by a Pakistani military court and directed Islamabad to provide consular access to him.

In a statement, the Ministry’s Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said, the court by a vote of 15-1 has upheld New Delhi’s claim that Pakistan is in egregious violation of Vienna Convention on Consular Relation, 1963 on several counts.

He said: India appreciates the direction by ICJ that Islamabad should review and reconsider conviction and sentence given to Mr Jadhav by Pakistani military court.

India’s advocate in the Jadhav case at ICJ, Harish Salve expressed gratitude to the court on behalf of India for the manner in which it intervened in the case.

Talking to media persons in London last night, Salve said, ICJ ruling has protected Kulbhushan Jadhav from being executed.

Salve said, the court rejected Pakistan’s allegation against India and forced Islamabad to ensure a fair trial.

He said New Delhi will go back to ICJ if Pakistan defies the order.

Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have hailed the ICJ ruling in the case.

In a tweet, VP Naidu said, he appreciates the government for its relentless efforts to secure justice for Kulbhushan Jadhav and expressed hope that this verdict would serve as a source of solace to the family members.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said truth and justice have prevailed. In a tweet, the Prime Minister said, he is sure Kulbhushan Jadhav will get justice. PM Modi said, his government will always work for the safety and welfare of every Indian.

Leaders across the political spectrum also welcomed the judgement, calling it a victory of truth and justice.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said he spoke to Jadhav’s family and applauded their courage. The Minister will make a statement in both the Houses of Parliament today regarding ICJ judgement in the case.

Home Minister Amit Shah termed it a victory of truth which protects human dignity.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh also hailed the judgement and described it as a big victory for India.

Welcoming the verdict, Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar said, it is the result of continuous efforts of the Narendra Modi government and the manner in which India’s lead counsel Harish Salve represented the case in the ICJ.

Former External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj thanked Salve for presenting India’s case before ICJ effectively and successfully.

The Congress has also welcomed the ICJ ruling, calling it a big win for India. In a tweet, party leader Rahul Gandhi expressed hope that  Kulbushan Jadhav will return to India soon.

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Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, presenting her maiden budget on July 05, 2019, kept unchanged the allocation provided to the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in the interim budget on February 01, at Rs 4,31,011 crore ($ 61.96 billion). Nonetheless, she changed the composition of the MoD’s budget by shifting few of the elements from one head of expenditure to another.

With the overall budget of the MoD remaining the same, the FM also changed the basic customs duties for certain defence imports, in an attempt to lessen the resource crunch facing modernisation of the armed forces.

This Brief examines India’s latest defence allocations, the distribution pattern of resources, shares of various stakeholders in the defence allocation and the possible impact on defence modernisation. It also looks at the Make in India initiatives announced in the budget that have an impact on defence production. It begins with a brief survey of the heath of the Indian economy in order to appreciate the larger context of the defence allocation.

State of the Economy:

Despite a slight moderation of gross domestic product (GDP) growth from 7.2 per cent in 2017-18 to 6.8 per cent in 2018-19, India remains the fastest-growing major economy in the world. The Economic Survey 2018-19, presented to the Parliament on July 4, projects the GDP to grow even higher at seven per cent in 2019-20, on the “back of an anticipated pickup in the growth in investment and acceleration in the growth of consumption.” The higher growth trajectory of the Indian economy is particularly impressive especially when the world economic growth is on a constant fall. Further, the impressive forecast of the Indian economy comes with macro-economic stability with the headline inflation, as well as fiscal and current account deficits, remaining within manageable levels. With an average growth of 7.5 per cent in the last five years, the Indian economy is also set to ‘shift gear’ for sustained growth of eight per cent per year for the country to become a five trillion-dollar economy by 2024-25.

The robust GDP growth prospects notwithstanding, there are several challenges facing the economy, especially on the fronts of job creation, availability of liquidity, infrastructure spending, and also in view of the rural and agrarian distress and the continuing crisis in both the banking and non-banking financial sectors. It is in this context that the latest Union budget attempts to spur economic activity by providing a host of measures for the affected segments. At the same time, the government has also decided to further contain the fiscal deficit target, so as to limit the inflationary pressure and allow a greater flow of resources for the more productive private sector. As against the fiscal deficit of 3.3 per cent of GDP articulated in the interim budget, the target has further been squeezed to 3.2 per cent.

The twin effects of a greater flow of resources to socio-economic sectors to spur economic activity and further squeezing of the fiscal deficit has constrained the FM from enhancing the overall allocations for the MoD. Though some leeway is provided by way of exempting certain defence imports from customs duty, it may not be enough, given the vast deficiencies existing across the defence services. Suffice to say that in 2018-19, the three armed forces together had projected a shortfall of Rs 1,12,137 crore or 30 per cent of their total requirement. This is exclusive of the shortfalls projected by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and others.

What is of greater importance for the defence establishment is that it is unlikely to see major growth in its budget in the near-to medium-term. The Medium-Term Fiscal Policy cum Fiscal Policy Strategy Statement, presented along with the Union budget, forecasts the revenue expenditure of the defence services to grow by 10 per cent per year for the next two years. Though there is no specific forecast for the capital expenditure of the defence services, it is unlikely to see a major jump, considering the limited space available in view of the government’s focus on massive spending on infrastructure development. The MoD and the wider defence establishment would have to perforce learn to live with the limited growth in defence spending at least till 2021-22.

MoD’s Total Budget: Civil, Pension and Defence:

Table 1 provides the distribution of the MoD’s total spending among three broad heads of expenditure: MoD (Civil), Defence Pensions and Defence Services. Though the MoD’s latest budget has remained the same as the interim allocation, there is a minor change of distribution between MoD (Civil) and Defence Services. The change is due to shifting out of two elements from the MoD (Civil) – Ex-Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme (ECHS) and Military Farms – to the fold of Defence Services which include the three armed forces and few other establishments, notably the DRDO and the Ordnance Factories (OFs). It is worth noting that the Military Farms and ECHS along with few others had been shifted to the MoD (Civil) in 2016-17. While others were brought back to their original place in subsequent years, these two are finally brought back in the latest budget. Further, they were brought back to the Army’s fold from where they had been shifted out.

It is worth noting that, of the three major constituents of the latest MoD budget, the Defence Services, which conventionally constitute India’s defence budget, amounts to  71 per cent, with Defence Pensions (26 per cent) and MoD (Civil) (three per cent) comprising the rest. What is of greater significance is that out of MoD’s total budget, close to 60 per cent is spent on salary and pensions of nearly 4.9 million personnel, of which 3.1 million are defence pensioners, 1.4 million uniformed and 0.4 million defence civilians. Owing to the periodic revision of salary and pension and the implementation of the One Rank One Pension (OROP), this segment has witnessed the highest growth. The arrears on OROP alone amounts to Rs 10,795 crore between 2015-16 and 2017-18.  With the prospect of major growth in the defence budget being not so encouraging in the coming years, the MoD has an uphill task of managing its resources, especially for capital procurement.

Table 1. Distribution of MoD’s Budget

MoD (Civil) (Rs in Crore) Defence Pensions (Rs in Crore) Defence Services (Rs in Crore) MoD’s Total Expenditure (Rs in Crore)
2017-18 (Actual) 15143
(4)
92000
(24)
272560
(72)
379702
2018-19 (BE) 16206
(4)
108853
(27)
279305
(69)
404365
2018-19 (RE) 16318
(4)
106775
(26)
282100
(70)
405194
2019-20 (BE) (Interim) 17065
(4)
112080
(26)
301866
(70)
431011
2019-20 (BE) 13635
(3)
112080
(26)
305296
(71)
431011
Difference between 2019-20 (BE) and 2019-20 BE (Interim) 3430 0 3430 0

Note: Figures in parenthesis represent the percentage share in MoD’s total expenditure. MoD (Civil) includes MoD Secretariat, Border Roads Organisation, Defence Accounts Department, Coast Guard Organisation, Defence Estate Organisation, Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry, Armed Forces Tribunal, etc. BE and RE represent Budget Estimate and Revised Estimate.

Defence Budget:

With the return of Military Farms and the ECHS to the fold of the Defence Services, the defence budget has marginally increased over the interim allocation (see Table 2). The increase is, however, largely on the revenue expenditure front, as the new entrants have very little capital expenditure. Of the total increase of Rs 3430 crore in the budget of Defence Services, Rs 3145 crore is on account of the ECHS, whereas the Military Farms have contributed Rs 285 crore.

With respect to the actual expenditure of 2018-19, the latest allocation is a modest increase of six per cent (or Rs 17,896 crore). Of the total increase, the Revenue expenditure contributes Rs 9,440 crore and the Capital expenditure Rs 8,456 crore.

Table 2. Defence Budget, 2018-19 and 2019-20

Revenue Expenditure Capital Expenditure Total
2018-19 (BE) (Rs in Crore) 185323 93982 279305
2018-19 (RE) (Rs in Crore) 188118 93982 282100
2018-19 (Actual) (Rs in Crore)* 192462 94938 287400
2019-20 (BE) (Interim) (Rs in Crore) 198486 103380 301866
2019-20 (BE) (Rs in Crore) 201902 103394 305296
Increase in 2019-20 (BE) over 2018-19 (Actual)
(Rs in Crore)
9440 8456 17896
% Increase in 2019-20 (BE) over 2018-19 (Actual) 5 9 6

Note: *: Unaudited provisional actual expenditure

Key Defence Parameters:

Table 3 provides the key defence parameters for 2018-19 and 2019-20. As can be seen, there has been a further decline in the share of defence expenditure in both the Central Government Expenditure (CGE) and the GDP. It is, however, important to note that even though the MoD’s budget constitutes a little over two per cent of the GDP, it still accounts for 15.5 per cent of the total CGE. The wide disparity in the shares is largely due to the small percentage of the GDP forming part of the government’s revenue, as much of the economic activity in the country does not translate into tax collection, the major source of government’s revenue. In fact, India’s tax-GDP ratio is one of the lowest among the comparable countries. Unless the tax base of the country increases substantially in the coming years, defence’s share in the CGE will remain high.

Table 3. Key Defence Statistics, 2018-19 and 2019-20

Parameter 2018-19 2019-20
Defence Budget (Rs in Crore) 2,79,305 3,05,296
Growth of Defence Budget (%) 7.7 9.3
Revenue Expenditure (Rs in Crore) 1,85,323 2,01,902
Growth of Revenue Expenditure (%) 7.3 8.9
Share of Revenue Expenditure in Defence Budget (%) 66 66
Capital Expenditure (Rs in Crore) 93,982 1,03,394
Growth of Capital Expenditure (%) 8.7 10.0
Share of Capital Expenditure in Defence Budget (%) 34 34
Share of Capital Expenditure in Central Government Capital Expenditure (%) # 31 31
Capital Acquisition (Rs in Crore) 74,116 81,009
Growth of Capital Acquisition (%) 6.7 9.3
Share of Defence Budget in GDP (%)* 1.48 1.45
Share of Defence Budget in Central Government Expenditure (%) 11.4 11.0
Defence Pension (Rs in Crore) 1,08,853 1,12,080
Growth of Defence Pension (%) 27 3.0
MoD’s Budget (Rs in Crore) 4,04,365 4,31,011
Growth in MoD’s Budget (%) 12.4 6.6
Share of MoD Budget in GDP (%)* 2.15 2.04
Share of MoD Budget in Central Government Expenditure (%) 16.6 15.5

Note: *: Based on GDP’s revised estimate for 2018-19 and budget estimate for 2019-20; #: The share is with respect to the capital segment of the defence budget. If the MoD’s total capital expenditure is taken into accounts, the share increases to 33 per cent and 32 per cent in 2018-19 and 2019-20, respectively.

Share of Defence Services:

With the inclusion of Military Farms and ECHS in the Army’s budget, the latter’s allocation has increased by Rs 3,430 crore from the interim allocation. As in the past, the Indian Army with a budget of Rs 1,71,023 crore accounts for the biggest share in the defence budget, distantly followed by the other defence services (see Figure 1). However, unlike its sister services, the Army’s budget is largely revenue expenditure-driven (see Table 4).

Figure 1. Share of Defence Services in Defence Budget 2019-20

Note: Army includes Military Firms, Ex-Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme, Directorate General of Quality Assurance (DGQA) and National Cadet Corps (NCC).

Table 4. Revenue and Capital Expenditure of Armed Forces, 2019-20

Army Navy Air Force
Revenue Expenditure (Rs in Crore) 141501 22212 29602
Capital Expenditure (Rs in Crore) 29522 23156 39347
Total (Revenue and Capital) (Rs in Crore) 171023 45368 68949
Revenue Expenditure as % of Total 83 49 43
Capital Expenditure as % of Total 17 51 57

Note: Army includes Military Firms, Ex-Servicemen Contributory Heath Scheme, Directorate General of Quality Assurance (DGQA), National Cadet Corps (NCC).

Impact on Modernisation:

The Indian armed forces are currently in the midst of a huge modernisation process. However, owing to the resource crunch, their ability to pay for it has come under a great deal of stress. The resource crunch has been so intense that they are finding it difficult to even pay for past contracts. In 2018-19, as against a requirement of Rs 1,10,044 crore to meet the Committed Liabilities, the total budget (including for New Schemes) was Rs 74,116 crore. If the requirement of the New Schemes is added, the shortfall on modernisation front was a staggering Rs 67,363 crore or 48 per cent.

As against a huge shortage on modernisation budget in the previous year, the latest budget has allocated an additional amount of Rs 6,893 crore, the same amount provided in the interim allocation (see Table 5 and Annexure). The additional amount is grossly inadequate, to say the least. However, partial relief is provided in the form of exemption of import of defence items not manufactured in India from the basic customs duty (CD). The MoD estimates the CD exemption will lead to a savings of Rs 25000 crore over the next five years.

Table 5. Modernisation Budget of the Armed Forces

2018-19 (BE) 2018-19 (RE) 2019-20 (BE) (I)# 2019-20 (BE) % Increase in 2019-20 (BE) over 2018-19 (BE)
Army* 21211 21166 22951 22951 8.2
Navy 19927 20035 22106 22106 10.9
Air Force 33085 33100 36365 36365 9.9
Total 74224 74301 81422 81422 9.7

Note: *: Figures for Army are approximate; #: (I) stands for Interim Budget.

It is significant to note that even though the MoD has a severe resource crunch to fund capital procurement, it has not deterred the Ministry from signing new contracts. Since April 2018, the MoD has signed at least 30 contracts with a cumulative value of nearly Rs 1,17,000 crore. An outgo at the rate of 15 per cent per year would require an additional amount of Rs 17,550 crore to pay for these contracts. It does not look like the additional budget and CD relief would be enough to cater for that.

Make in India in Defence:

Though the Finance Minister has not announced any defence specific measures, she has articulated a number of Make in India incentives which the MoD and the defence industry could take advantage of in driving the Make in India initiative in domestic arms production. Some of the initiatives articulated in the budget include:

  • Lower corporate tax of 25 per cent for companies with an annual turnover of up to Rs 400 crore (earlier threshold was Rs 250 crore): The reduction of corporate tax from earlier 30 per cent to 25 per cent will improve the profit margin and act as a key incentive, particularly for private companies in the defence sector.
  • Increase in minimum pubic shareholding in listed companies from 25 per cent to 35 per cent: This would pave the way for the government to raise additional resources by offering the shares of the listed Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs) which don’t meet the new listing norm. The additional resources would augment the government’s revenue which could be channelled for defence infrastructure development.
  • Strategic Disinvestment of Central Public Sector Undertakings (CPSEs): The FM has categorically stated her government’s unwavering commitment towards strategic disinvestment of government-owned companies. Some of the DPSUs, particularly the BEML, which was earlier identified for strategic disinvestment but held back for unspecified reasons, could now be taken to the logical conclusion. The MoD could also identity few other non-strategic DPSUs which could be offered for privatisation.
  • Payment platform and ease of access to credit for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs): This will greatly facilitate ease of doing business in defence for 8000-odd MSMEs who are involved in defence in some form or the other.
  • Abolition of ‘Angel-Tax’ for Start-Ups: This would eliminate the threat from tax authorities in respect of valuation of share premiums. The start-ups and their investors would have greater freedom to focus on innovation and in operating their own business.

While the above steps are encouraging and would help the Make in India initiative in the defence sector, the budget nonetheless falls short on a number of counts, especially in respect of the Defence Corridor and the scheme for funding defence attaches for export promotion. On each of these, the budget makes a token provision of Rs 100,000, which is grossly inadequate.

Conclusion: Funding Defence in an Era of Scarcity:

With the latest Union budget keeping the MoD’s interim allocation unchanged, the defence establishment has an uphill task in managing its resources. Though a partial relief is given in the form of customs duty exemptions for certain defence imports, it is unlikely to mitigate the severe resource constraints that the three armed forces have witnessed in recent years for their modernisation requirements. From the MoD’s point of view, what is of greater concern is that a significant augmentation of its resources is unlikely in the near future, given the competing demands from other sectors, especially in view of the government’s commitment to spend massively on infrastructure development.

Given the gloomy forecast of resource availability, the MoD has to find a way to fund its modernisation programmes. It is high time the MoD raised some resources by making best use of the vast assets it owns, rather than completely relying on the government funding. The Finance Minister’s disinvestment commitment, including privatization of CPSE, could be used by the MoD to raise some of the much-needed resources by exposing all the DPSUs under its administrative control to the new listing norms.

Apart from the disinvestment, the MoD could also identify its vast unused or underused land parcel from its existing 1.73 million acres of land, which could be put to commercial use without compromising the security requirement. The resources generated could be used for the modernisation requirements.

Last but not least, the MoD also needs to rebalance its defence expenditure so as to contain the manpower cost and devote more resources for modernisation. Spending nearly 60 per cent of its budget on salary and pension is highly undesirable for a country which faces a two-front security threat. The MoD may like to review the existing ‘colour service’ for the entitlement of pension and also the possibility of lateral entry of retired uniformed personnel into the paramilitary forces.

Disclaimer: The facts and opinions expressed in this article are strictly the personal opinions of the author. League of India does not assume any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, completeness, suitability, or validity of any information in this article.

Originally published by the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (www.idsa.inhere.

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LONDON (England): England and New Zealand served up the best ODI in history in the Lord’s finale on Sunday. It was a sensational climax, befitting a riveting tournament that has allowed the gentleman’s game to capture the imagination of all and sundry once more.

Thrill.
Excitement.
Jubilation. #EoinMorgan and his team are world champions! #CWC19FINAL | #WeAreEngland | #CWC19 pic.twitter.com/8qbv446AEm

— Cricket World Cup (@cricketworldcup) July 14, 2019

It was almost heart-rending that a winner needed to be crowned, with England ultimately lifting the coveted trophy for the first time in their history by the slightest of margins.

For those privileged to be present at St John’s Wood will remember it for the rest of the lives. It doesn’t matter whether if you were English or from New Zealand – or in fact Indian for there were many present after having already bought tickets – it was extremely special to be part of.

England vs New Zealand - Match Highlights | ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 - YouTube

After posting 242, his bowlers set about strangling England’s top order with some inspired bowling.

New Zealand’s Colin de Grandhomme celebrates taking the wicket of England’s Joe Root.
At 86-4 the game looked New Zealand’s. But there is a reason that England, the pre-tournament favorite, is the world’s No.1 ranked team.

In Buttler and Stokes it had two players perfect for the occasion. Buttler’s 59 off 60 took England to within touching distance before Stokes led England if not quite home, to the driveway at the very least.
When Mark Wood was run out attempting to win the tie off the final ball, Stokes was left all alone unbeaten on 84 and with one eye firmly fixed on a Super Over.

With the crowd on its feet, most in disbelief, Stokes appeared to remain the calmest man inside Lord’s.

Both he and Buttler strode back out for the Super Over, hitting 15 off six deliveries to leave New Zealand requiring 16 to win.

Such a total appeared quite modest once Jimmy Neesham had taken aim at England’s Jofra Archer, leaving his side requiring two off the final ball for victory.

Martin Guptill, the man charged with hitting the winning shot, smashed the ball as hard as he could as he set off on a quick run.

But as he turned to race back, the ball arrowed towards the stumps from the arm of Jason Roy towards Buttler, who broke the stumps and New Zealand hearts.

“It’s coming home, it’s coming home, cricket’s coming home,” sang the England fans.

Despite another epic being played out just down the way on the District Line at Wimbledon’s Centre Court between those two long-time rivals Roger Federer and Lewis Hamilton chasing his own piece of history at Silverstone, there was only one place to be in London.

However, when a big match like this is decided by small margins such as boundaries scored (England’s 26 to New Zealand’s 17), you have to feel for the losers.

Score:

New Zealand 241 for 8 (Nicholls 55, Woakes 3-37) tied with England 241 (Stokes 84*, Buttler 59, Neesham 3-43)

Super over England 15 beat New Zealand 15 on boundaries scored

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BAAL KAAND – Day 188 1.187

जनि डरपहु मुनि सिद्ध सुरेसा। तुम्हहि लागि धरिहउँ नर बेसा।।
अंसन्ह सहित मनुज अवतारा। लेहउँ दिनकर बंस उदारा।।
कस्यप अदिति महातप कीन्हा। तिन्ह कहुँ मैं पूरब बर दीन्हा।।
ते दसरथ कौसल्या रूपा। कोसलपुरीं प्रगट नरभूपा।।
तिन्ह के गृह अवतरिहउँ जाई। रघुकुल तिलक सो चारिउ भाई।।
नारद बचन सत्य सब करिहउँ। परम सक्ति समेत अवतरिहउँ।।
हरिहउँ सकल भूमि गरुआई। निर्भय होहु देव समुदाई।।
गगन ब्रह्मबानी सुनी काना। तुरत फिरे सुर हृदय जुड़ाना।।
तब ब्रह्मा धरनिहि समुझावा। अभय भई भरोस जियँ आवा।।

दोहा/सोरठा

निज लोकहि बिरंचि गे देवन्ह इहइ सिखाइ।
बानर तनु धरि धरि महि हरि पद सेवहु जाइ।।187।।

Chaupai

“Fear not, O sages, Siddhas and Indra (the chief of gods); for your sake, I will assume the form of a human being. In the glorious solar race, I shall be born as a human being along with My part manifestations. The sage Kashyap and his wife Aditi did severe penance; to them, I have already vouchsafed a boon. They have appeared in the city of Ayodhya as rulers of men in the form of Dasharath and Kaushalya. In their house, I shall take birth in the form of four brothers, the ornament of Raghu’s line. I shall implement all that was uttered by Narada and shall descend with My Supreme Energy. In this way I shall relieve the earth of all its burden; be fearless, O gods.” As the divine voice from heaven reached the god’s ears they returned forthwith with their heart soothed. Then Brahma admonished Earth, who was rid of all fear and felt reassured in her heart. (1—5)

Doha/Soratha

Then Brahma proceeded to his realm after thus instructing the gods: “Assuming the form of monkeys you go to the earth and adore the feet of Shri Hari.” (187)

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NEW DELHI: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has provisionally attached properties worth over 24 crore rupees of accused Mehul Choksi in Punjab National Bank Fraud Case.

The attachment includes three commercial properties in Dubai, valuables, one Mercedes and Fixed Deposit Account controlled by Choksi.

ED attaches under PMLA, 3 commercial properties in Dubai, valuables, 1 Mercedes Benz E280 and Fixed Deposit totaling to Rs. 24.8 crores of accused Mehul Choksi in a #Bankfraud case.

— ED (@dir_ed) July 11, 2019


In a statement, the ED said, it had initiated an investigation in money laundering case against Mehul Choksi and others in February last year under Prevention of Money Laundering Act on the basis of FIR registered by CBI.

Choksi and others have committed the offence of cheating against Punjab National Bank in connivance with certain bank officials by fraudulently getting the Letter Of Undertaking and Foreign Letters of Credit issued causing wrongful loss to the bank.

Out of total proceeds of crime worth over six thousand 97 crore rupees, ED has attached and seized properties worth two thousand 534 crore rupees.

The agency said, Choksi is suspected to be in Antigua and Barbuda and extradition Request has been sent. A red corner notice has also been issued against Mehul Choksi on the request of ED.

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League of India by League India Politics Desk - 1w ago

PANAJI (Goa): Even as the Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition struggles to save its rickety government in Karnataka, a political quake jolted the Congress party in neighbouring Goa on Wednesday when 10 of its 15 legislators switched to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Now, BJP’s strength in the 40-member house has gone up to 27

The breakaway MLAs met the speaker of the Goa legislative assembly Rajesh Patnekar in the presence of Goa chief minister Pramod Sawant yesterday. Patnekar confirmed receiving a letter from the 10 MLAs for a merger with BJP and said that he had accepted it.

10 Congress MLAs from Goa join BJP in presence of National Working President Shri @JPNadda at BJP HQ. #BJPMembership pic.twitter.com/OUdQPyhmfX

— BJP (@BJP4India) July 11, 2019

The setback was more humiliating for Congress as the breakaway group includes Opposition chief Babu Kavlekar

Also switching sides was Babush Monserrate, who in May won the prestigious Panaji assembly seat which late Goa chief minister Manohar Parrikar held for years.

10 Goa Congress MLAs, who joined BJP, to meet President Amit Shah

Ten Congress MLAs from Goa, who had formally split and merged with BJP, will meet the party President Amit Shah in New Delhi today.

This was confirmed by Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, who is in New Delhi along with the MLAs.

Yesterday, Leader of Opposition in Goa Assembly Chandrakant Kavlekar led a group of 10 Congress MLAs to merge with the BJP.

The move bolstered BJP’s numbers in the Legislative Assembly from 17 to 27 MLAs and consolidated its Government.

The BJP-led Government now enjoys the support of 33 of the 40 MLAs in the house. The Goa Assembly currently has 27 BJP legislators, five Congress MLAs, three each from GFP and independents and one each from Nationalist Congress Party and Maharasthrawadi Gomantak Party.

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BENGALURU (Karnataka): The political crisis in Karnataka deepened today as 10 rebelling Congress and JD(S) MLAs moved to the Supreme Court with a plea alleging that the state Assembly Speaker has been deliberately not accepting their resignations.

A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi took note of the submission of senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the rebel MLAs, and assured that it will see whether their petition can be listed for an urgent hearing tomorrow.

The senior lawyer said these lawmakers have already resigned from their membership of the assembly and wanted to contest fresh elections.

The state Assembly Speaker had held on Tuesday that the resignations of nine out of 14 rebel MLAs were not in order.

Earlier: Congress leader D K Shivakumar arrived in Mumbai

High drama is being witnessed outside a hotel today where the rebel Congress MLAs from Karnataka have been putting up. Congress leader D K Shivakumar who arrived in Mumbai early this morning to meet the rebel MLAs was denied permission by the Mumbai Police.

Police escorts Karnataka Minister DK Shivakumar away from the gates of Renaissance – Mumbai Convention Centre Hotel where 10 rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs are staying. The MLAs had written to Police stating”We’ve heard CM&DK Shivakumar are going to storm the hotel,we feel threatened” pic.twitter.com/KCPmJzZjPH

— ANI (@ANI) July 10, 2019

The MLAs from both Congress-JD(S) combine have written to Mumbai Police Commissioner citing threat to their lives and has, therefore, said that Shivkumar should not be given permission to meet.

10 rebel Karnataka Congress-JD(S) MLAs write to Mumbai Commissioner of Police stating “We are staying at Hotel Renaissance Powai in Mumbai, we have heard HD Kumaraswamy & DK Shivakumar are going to storm the hotel, we feel threatened. Do not allow them to enter hotel premises” pic.twitter.com/rvMa2If8eH

— ANI (@ANI) July 9, 2019

Following the request, the Mumbai police made heavy deployment of security officials outside the Renaissance hotel.

Police escorts Karnataka Minister DK Shivakumar away from the gates of Renaissance – Mumbai Convention Centre Hotel where 10 rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs are staying. The MLAs had written to Police stating”We’ve heard CM&DK Shivakumar are going to storm the hotel,we feel threatened” pic.twitter.com/KCPmJzZjPH

— ANI (@ANI) July 10, 2019

Shivakumar who was blocked entry told reporters that he has booked a room at the hotel as he wants to convince his friends putting up in the same hotel. He also told the police that he has not come to threaten the MLAs.

However, the police have not allowed him to meet the MLAs. Meanwhile, some supporters of the BJP shouted “go back” slogans and staged a protest when the Congress leader arrived at the hotel.

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