Kashmir Issue Current Affairs - 2020

Democracy Index released: India ranks 51; Slips 10 positions

On January 22, 2020, the Economic Intelligence Unit released Democracy Index for the year 2019. The index was topped by Norway. Norway was followed by Iceland and Sweden at second and third positions respectively. India was pushed to 51st rank slipping 10 positions as compared to its previous ranking

Highlights

According to the report, the slippage of India’s ranking was mainly due to the protests of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), National Register of Citizens (NRC) and abrogation of special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

Report on Kashmir

With respect to the Kashmir issue of Abrogation of Article 370, the report says that certain acts of government over the issue led to the decline in the country’s ranking. It includes deployment of large troops in Jammu and Kashmir region, restricting internet access and also placing local leaders under house arrest.

Report on NRC

The report said that the citizenship registration exercise excluded 1.9 million people from the final list. Also, the majority of the population excluded were Muslims. This has enraged large Muslim population and has stoked protests in various parts of the country.

History of India’s Index

The democratic indices are awarded over a score of 10. Since the launch of the Index in 2006, India has obtained the lowest score of 6.9 this time in 2019. In 2018, India obtained 7.23. India’s highest score was 7.91 in 2014 and has declined since then. However, India’s scores have always remained above global average. This year, the global average was 5.44.

UNSC meet on Kashmir cancelled

The United Nations Security Council meet was sought by China on December 17, 2019. The meeting was sought after India decided to end special status of Jammu and Kashmir by abrogating Article 370. However, the meeting was cancelled with the French supporting India. All over the world Pakistan is supported only by China, Turkey and Malaysia over the Kashmir issue.

Highlights

China insisted reviving India-Pakistan issue in the United Nations where the issue has been dormant since 1971. India believes that China is bringing up the issue ahead of India-china special representatives meet in Agra and India-US 2+2 defence talks that are to be held in December 2019.

In August 2019, the UNSC held a closed-door meeting to discuss India-Pakistan issues. However, no final statement was released at the end of the meeting.

United Nations Security Council

The UNSC is the most powerful organization of the United Nations whose responsibility is to maintain peace and security. India is not a permanent member of the UNSC. As a member of G4, India is seeking permanent representation. All the G4 countries are seeking permanent membership. It includes Brazil, Germany, India and Japan. Unlike G7, where the primary focus is economy, at G4 the common denominator is to get permanent membership seat at the security council.