Morning Brief: B-Card At UN; Af Pivot; Triple Talaq; Bayer-Monsanto Deal; Bird-Flu Free

Morning Brief: B-Card At UN; Af Pivot; Triple Talaq; Bayer-Monsanto Deal; Bird-Flu FreePhoto: STRDEL/AFP/Getty Images
  • Good Morning, Swarajya Readers! Here’s What You Need To Know Today.

Baluchistan Violations Called Out

India has started raising human rights violations of Pakistan’s politico-military establishment in Baluchistan at international forums. The latest such platform being the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) where India lashed out at Pakistan for its authoritarianism, absence of democratic norms and widespread human rights violations across the country.

Apart from Baluchistan, India also advised Pakistan to focus its energies on improving the human rights situation in Pakistan occupied Kashmir.

Afghan Pivot

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani is in Delhi. He met Prime Minister Modi yesterday. Both leaders signed various pacts. They discussed the regional situation and expressed grave concern at the continued use of terrorism and violence in the region by Pakistan and called for an end to sponsorship and support of militants.

India has offered Afghanistan a fresh $1 billion in economic assistance, which takes the total aid to $2 billion. The latest assistance is aimed at strengthening Afghanistan’s education, health, agriculture and other sectors.

No More Triple Talaq?

Top Union ministers, including Rajnath Singh, Arun Jaitley, Manohar Parrikar and Maneka Gandhi met yesterday to discuss the government’s response to the Supreme court’s notice on the clutch of public interest litigations filed by several Muslim women requesting the abolition of triple talaq in the country.

It seems that the Centre is likely to bat against the practice and in favour of women’s rights. It will look at international practices, including those in Islamic nations like Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and Iraq, which have either banned or restricted this practice. However, it is unlikely to recommend a law to ban unilateral triple talaq.

Bayer-Monsanto Deal

German drugs and crop chemicals company Bayer AG finally reached an agreement to buy U.S. seeds firm Monsanto Co. for $66 billion. However, the $128/share deal will likely face an intense and lengthy regulatory process in the United States, Canada, Brazil, the European Union and elsewhere. Both the firms will need to file in about 30 jurisdictions for the merger.

The deal will create a company commanding more than a quarter of the combined world market for seeds and pesticides.

India Is Bird-Flu Free!

India has declared itself free from avian influenza (H5N1), or bird-flu, from 5 September and notified the same to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE). However, the government has emphasised the need for continued surveillance especially in the vulnerable areas bordering infected countries and in areas visited by migratory birds.

Bird flu affects mainly the domestic poultry. The disease spreads from infected birds to other winged creatures through contact with nasal and respiratory secretions and also due to contamination of feed and water.


Why Shashi Tharoor Is Wrong On Vamana Jayanti: Putting out the right tweet on the right day, like Shah did, is not ignorance but just common sense. What can be construed as ignorance, however, is being unaware that some parts of India do in fact celebrate Vamana Jayanti.

Gradually Burying NAM: New Delhi is showing signs of pursuing strategic autonomy separately from non-alignment under Narendra Modi.

Critics Of LEMOA Are Wrong: Opposition to LEMOA channels deeply held strains of nationalism and anti-Americanism in Indian politics.

How Criminal Politicians Actually Take The Lights Out Of A Town: The economic cost of electing criminal representatives, such as Mohammad Shahabuddin of Siwan, goes beyond what is apparent at first sight.


Why There’s No Such Thing As A Revenue-Neutral Rate: One can take a stab at guessing the revenue-neutral rate (RNR) for the central government once GST is operationalised, but no such data exists for states. In order to proceed cautiously but steadily on the road to GST, the Modi government would do well to regard its own Chief Economic Advisor’s calculations on RNR with some degree of doubt.

We hope you enjoyed reading our morning brief. Have a great day ahead!

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