[Premium] One Nation, One Ration Card Scheme – Pros & Cons

India is a welfare state. This means that it is the duty of the government to ensure the protection and promotion of the economic and social well-being of its citizens. One Nation One Ration Card Scheme seeks to provide solutions to the limitations of the previous food security schemes that were domicile-based, that is, the beneficiaries can only avail for the assistance at a fixed Public Distribution System and cannot change this without undertaking prior complex procedures.

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Industrial Revolution 4.0: Are we prepared for it?

The world is facing a continuous change due to the ever-increasing scientific and technological development and innovations. These developments have changed the political, social and economic lives of mankind.

The history in itself is defined by the improved technologies and new scientific discoveries like wheels, stone tools, steam engines, trains, automated machines, computers, etc. Now, we are at the cusp of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the one that is dominated by technologies that far exceed human intelligence.

These innovations and technological growth may help mankind solve existing problems like poverty, death due to calamities, accidents, etc. These developments are fast-paced and ever-growing.

Currently, the laws and government policies are slow in preparing for these new technologies and scientific discoveries. The Indian Government must take immediate steps to make full use of the new and exhilarating possibilities arising out of the Industrial Revolution 4.0.

India’s Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) – An Overview

Many foreign investors have pulled out of China in response to the tensions arising from the Trade War. This was made use of by countries like Vietnam, Singapore, etc., for their economic development.

India, in 2015, scraped the 2013 BIT model and brought in a new model which was in effect in 2017. This has caused an unfavourable investment environment within the country. India has also pulled out of BITs with 58 countries.

This model according to a Brookings Report is Pro-State with limited security to the foreign investors in India. India’s pulling out of BITs have created uncertainty amongst the foreign investors in India and Indian investors abroad.

[Premium] Interlinking of Rivers – Pros & Cons

Whether we realise it or not, the drinking water scarcity problem that we see in different parts of India today is a direct result of climate change. India is very vulnerable to climate change — melting Himalayan glaciers will produce floods in north India; erratic monsoons will create droughts in peninsular India.

Global action against climate change is not enough even if the Paris Agreement is followed in letter and spirit which is already weakening due to nations such as the US and Brazil walking away from it. Therefore India will have to assume the worst of impacts of global warming and tailor its programmes accordingly.

With the threat of floods and droughts looming in various parts of the country, there is no option but to make the 150-year-old idea, that is, Interlinking of Rivers (ILR) happen, and fast. The NDA government has always been in favour of inter-linking of rivers and it is to be hoped that the government sees ILR in the light of climate action, rather than a developmental move.

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GM Crops in India – Pros & Cons

Under the Environment Protection Act, 1986, growing GM crops that are not approved by the government can result in a five-year jail term and a hefty ₹1 lakh fine. Yet a Haryana farmer had grown a genetically modified (GM) variant of brinjal which is banned under the law that has landed him in controversy and the officials had forced him to uproot the crop.

There are two arguments regarding GM crops – one is “its potential in terms of increased crop yields & shelf life in the context of climate change events” and the other one is the “concern regarding its reliability and impacts on the environment and human health”.