Evening Check In: Resisting 'Regime Change' Operations By US

Swarajya Staff

Oct 30, 2023, 06:04 PM | Updated 05:32 PM IST

'Regime Change' Season In Bangladesh

Bangladesh Map (Himasaram Nirvik12/Wikimedia Commons) 
Bangladesh Map (Himasaram Nirvik12/Wikimedia Commons) 

Bangladesh is headed for very difficult times and India must wade through the current crisis very carefully.

Current Unrest: Opposition parties BNP and Jamaat-e-Islami are creating chaos ahead of the parliamentary elections, aiming to dislodge the current government.

  • Their demand: A caretaker government to oversee the elections.

  • Recent events: A large BNP rally turned violent, leading to deaths and arrests.

International Involvement: The USA and some European nations are showing keen interest in Bangladesh's elections, often overstepping their bounds.

  • The BNP-Jamaat coalition hopes to use this international attention to their advantage, potentially at the cost of national stability.

India's Concern: BNP and Jamaat, historically anti-India and pro-Pakistan, could jeopardize India-Bangladesh relations and projects.

  • Their rule could also empower China regionally and allow Pakistan's ISI more freedom in Bangladesh.

  • India's stance: The US needs to step back from Bangladesh's electoral process to maintain regional stability.

Recommended Reading: Jaideep Mazumdar On Why India Needs To Tell The US To Lay Off The Upcoming Parliamentary Elections In Bangladesh

India Needs Reliable Energy Suppliers (Is Qatar one?)


Amid geopolitical tensions with Qatar, India eyes the Cabo Delgado gasfield in Mozambique as a strategic pivot in its LNG sourcing.

Why It Matters: Recent tensions with Qatar push India to reconsider its primary LNG sources.

  • The sentencing of eight Indian Navy personnel to death in Qatar has strained historically friendly ties.

The Shift: The Cabo Delgado gasfield in Mozambique emerges as a potential major source for India's energy needs.

  • The Cabo Delgado gasfield, partly owned by Indian energy firms, is one of the world's largest gas deposits. Its operations had been halted since April 2021 due to security concerns, specifically attacks by Islamic State terrorists in the region.

  • Union Petroleum Minister Hardeep Singh Puri's recent review of the $20 billion project underscores its significance.

  • The project's resumption is anticipated to provide a substantial boost to India's energy security, with Indian public sector oil and gas companies holding a 30% stake.

Context: Diversify, diversify, diversify.

  • Qatar, being the primary supplier, accounts for more than half of India's LNG imports, giving it considerable leverage in their diplomatic relationship.

  • The Mozambican government's green light for the Cabo Delgado gasfield operations to restart is welcome news!

  • It hints at a shift in the LNG market dynamics in India, potentially offering more competitive prices and reducing Qatar's trade dominance.

Electoral Bonds Vs Transparency?

The Election Commission of India.
The Election Commission of India.

Electoral bonds have been in the spotlight, and today's affidavit from the Centre has further ignited the debate.

Tushar Gupta writes here on why transparency isn't just about naming donors:

The Centre's Stand: The Attorney General R Venkataramani argued today that citizens don't have a general right to know electoral bond sources, pushing against a broad "right to know everything."

Electoral Bonds Demystified: Introduced in 2018, these bonds let parties accept contributions from individuals or organizations in India.

  • Purchases are bank-account based with a digital-paper trail, ensuring no cash payments and limiting black money concerns.

  • Yet critics naively term them a "threat to democracy", demanding donor names.

The Real Issues: With India's history of political pettiness, public donor names could backfire, even if donors support multiple parties.

  • Vendetta Politics: Publicizing donor names risks political retribution. Transparency concerns could be addressed by parties declaring bond values periodically.

  • Media Trials & Policy Impacts: Companies like Adani Enterprises, potentially criticized for their political donations, could face media trials based on misconceptions, impacting both their reputation and broader economic policy debates.

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