Daily Editorial Analysis for 13th February 2020

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Restoring integrity among people

Paper: IV

For Mains: Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, Determinants and Consequences of Ethics in – Human Actions.

Context of News:

  • Election will come and go, as Delhi election is over but the dust of residue of the venomous rhetoric that was let loose not only against Muslim communities but also against those who were part of political protests more broadly, is not likely to disappear soon. At one level, it would seem obvious that if there is a time to speak out against such politics of hatred, regardless of consequences, it is now.

About Identity Politics:

  • Identity politics is a political approach and analysis based on people prioritizing the concerns most relevant to their particular racial, religious, ethnic, sexual, social, cultural or other identity.
  • With regard to identity politics, we suggest a distinction between two dimensions: macro and micro. The macro questions have to do with national, sub-national and group identities: how is India’s national identity defined, and what kinds of group identities- religious, linguistic, tribal, and caste-related -have been prominent in national politics? The micro questions have to do with how families and individuals adapt to, and counter, changes in environment, and what sorts of politics such adaptations and challenges spawn.

Why Politics choose ladder of Hatred for Success?

  • Identity politics play a significant role in shaping the views of the people. Issues that influence the electoral politics are delivery of services, governance efficiency, and outreach to the electorate etc. But, somehow all around the world ad especially in India, identity politics is making march vis-à-vis other key issues.
  • voting his caste over cast his vote; This identity politics has entrenched so deep in people of India that ,it has become like should in the body ,which only vanished when we left this world.
  • Identity politics in India can be easily manipulated in hatred for not only diverting attention from real cause but also for winning election, identity politics is easy way to get election result in favour.
  • Identity politics or what we might call the demand for recognition is, at its core, essentially the politics of equal dignity and the politics of difference (or authenticity). It has emerged both in the developing and developed world, and has roots in gender politics, sexual politics, ethnic politics, and religious interpretations, or some combination thereof. The founding arguments of many, if not all, of these movements combine tradition and modernity in unusual ways.

How to restore Integrity in People:

  • It is difficult is to respond to the loss of a moral compass evident in everyday practices and the simultaneous temptations of crass moralism that marks much of liberal discourse today. Perhaps instead of turning to the tired vocabulary of moral philosophy with its well tested routes of categorical imperatives and rule following, we might turn to literature to ask how one might restore integrity to ordinary men and women within this unfolding politics of the grotesque.
  • A leadership to watch for, it involves a clear message from the top of any organization, public, voluntary or private, that ethical behavior really matters.Laders at top set the tone of way of functioning of a organization. On a similar pattern the first stop should be to clean out politics to expect better result from people in terms of integrity.
  • Politics of hatred and politics of identity will only be replaced, when people will have integrity among them to take decision based upon rationality.

Way Forward:

  • The time is long overdue for a fresh approach that seeks to rekindle trust in public life by putting in place robust expectations of ethical behaviour along with serious consequences for breaches. The first step in this process is to find some agreement on what sort of ethical standards are appropriate – to operationalise ideas about good and bad, right and wrong, into a practicable code of behavior.
  • Ethnic fragmentation of the kind India has allows full play to identity politics. This fragmentation also makes it difficult for communities across fault lines to come together to mobilize on economic issues.

First call: on India-Sri Lanka ties

GS Paper III

Topic: International relations

Mains: Indo-Srilanka relations

What’s the News?

  • Sri Lanka’s former wartime defence minister Gotabaya Rajapaksa won the recent Presidential elections there.
  • The Rajapaksa family is perceived as being close to China and, of late, has been seen as harbouring misgivings about India.
  • However making New Delhi their first stop abroad, Sri Lanka’s new President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who visited in November have signalled hope of beginning a new India-Sri Lanka chapter.


  • The relationship between India and Sri Lanka is more than 2,500 years old. Both countries have a legacy of intellectual, cultural, religious and linguistic interaction.
  • In recent years, the relationship has been marked by close contacts at all levels.
  • Trade and investment have grown and there is cooperation in the fields of development, education, culture and defence.

Discussions during Meet:

  • India indicated that it would like to make a fresh start, working on development projects, including a joint India-Japan proposal for the East Container Terminal at Colombo.
  • Air connectivity to Sri Lanka’s north and east is already being improved — there is a flight from India to Jaffna, and another one being proposed for Batticaloa.
  • On security, Mr. Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Narendra Modi discussed intelligence sharing, training and the utilisation of a special $50-million Line of Credit extended by India after last year’s Easter Sunday bombings.
  • India, Sri Lanka and the Maldives are expected to revive their trilateral on security, including joint maritime security talks and anti-terror cooperation.

Rajapaksas “Equi-distant policy”:

  • The Rajapaksas have had good relations with India and have visited the country many times, including for pilgrimage.
  • Gotabaya also knows of India’s immense contribution to Sri Lanka during the civil war, and realises that neither China nor Pakistan can be a substitute for India.
  • India is Sri Lanka’s largest trading partner and also one of the largest investors in the country.
  • The largest numbers of tourists visiting Sri Lanka are from India. Sri Lankans, of all economic strata, across racial and religious divides, come to India for healthcare, education and pilgrimage. So, it is unlikely that any sensible leader would like to snap such relations.


  • Devolution of powers to the provincial councils as promised in the 13th amendment has not yet taken place. India has lot of stake in racial harmony in Sri Lanka and has contributed immensely in the past — both in terms of resources and human lives — to ensure Sri Lanka’s integrity and racial harmony.
  • India is aware that China’s economic and strategic dominance in the Indian Subcontinent will continue to grow.
  • China’s influence is not tied to the regime leadership in its neighbourhood.
  • It is thus irrelevant to label governments in Colombo as “pro-China” or “pro-India”.

Other issues:

  • Fisherman Problem
  • Fishing disputes have been a constant area of concern between the two South Asian neighbors for a long time.
  • Sri Lanka has long expressed concerns about illegal fishing by Indian fishermen within its territorial waters across the Palk Strait.
  • The country regularly arrests Indian fishermen for crossing the International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL) that demarcates Indian and Sri Lankan waters.
  • India also detains Sri Lankan fishermen for the illegal fishing.
  • Katchatheevu Island
  • It is an uninhabited island that India ceded to Sri Lanka in 1974 based on a conditional agreement called “Kachchativu island pact”.
  • Later on, Sri Lanka declared Katchatheevu, a sacred land given the presence of a Catholic shrine
  • The central government recognizes Sri Lanka’s sovereignty over the island as per the 1974 accord.
  • But Tamil Nadu claimed that Katchatheevu falls under the Indian territory and Tamil fishermen have traditionally believed that it belongs to them and therefore want to preserve the right to fish there.

Way forward:

  • Provision of bringing in the licensing system whereby Indian fishermen could be permitted to fish in Sri Lankan waters in specified areas or on specified days and vice versa.
  • India should regulate trawlers and discourage them from crossing the boundary and from Sri Lankan side they have stopped the false charges by coming out of LTTE issue.
  • Political will to ensure that the rights of both the countries fishermen are protected within the respective territorial jurisdiction.
  • The use of technology like the Global positioning System (GPS), RADAR navigation system, Automatic Identification System (AIS) in coastal areas whenever they cross into another country’s waters.
  • Instituting a Palk Bay Authority for devising an integrated solution to the fishermen‘s problems encompassing their livelihood issues and commerce in the area.
  • India should provide technical advisory support to set up processing units for fishery products and promote other income generating activities in the agro-allied sectors.
  • State should subsidize schemes for fishermen to procure deep-sea fish.


  • During the last few years, various constitutional amendments have weakened the Sri Lankan president’s powers considerably and it would be interesting to watch the relation between the president and the parliament, which cannot be dissolved before February 2020 — unless it votes itself to do so.
  • India will do well to wait and watch while diplomatically engaging with the new president.

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