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18 AUGUST, 2017 (MAINS)

TODAYS ANSWER WRITING CHALLENGE FROM GS-II

 

Q1. India’s nominally secular society, as it was under Nehru’s brand of socialism, has come under significant strain, particularly in the latter stages of the twentieth and the turn of the twenty-first century. Discuss the ethnic crisis that has occurred in India’s neighborhood in recent times. What role can India play in ameliorating the crisis situation? (200 words)

 

Please write the answer in comments section

  • Osho Korde

    Since partition in 1947, the status and treatment of the remaining Muslim citizens in India’s new multiethnic nation alongside the majority Hindu citizenry has been a bone of contention. India’s nominally secular society, as it was under Nehru’s brand of socialism, has come under significant strain, particularly in the latter stages of the twentieth and the turn of the twenty-first century.

    The arrival of identity politics during the 1980s, whereby people mobilise politically around particularistic identities, be it religion, caste, jati or language, has promoted the political expediency of organisations and political parties.

    The decision to airlift 50 tonnes of relief supplies to Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh, coupled with the earlier announcement of a large aid project for the Rohingya’s home province in Myanmar, is the latest example of India’s use of humanitarian assistance as an instrument of foreign policy.

    However, its attempts to balance between Bangladesh and Myanmar, use its aid to address immediate humanitarian problems, and influence Naypyidaw’s genocidal way in private have been badly muddied by the government’s abrupt decision to tighten the screws on Rohingya refugees coming into India. One can be sympathetic to the problem of handling a Myanmar given the realpolitik constraints that arise from China’s presence, but not to a poorly-timed decision to review the status of Rohingyas inside India.

    The benefits accruing from India’s generosity across borders are being negated by its parsimoniousness within its own.