National Security Current Affairs

Lok Sabha passes Requisitioning and Acquisition of Immovable Property (Amendment) Bill, 2017

The Lok Sabha has passed Requisitioning and Acquisition of Immovable Property (Amendment) Bill, 2017 to make it easier for government to acquire immovable property for “national security and defence purpose”.

The Bill amends the Requisitioning and Acquisition of Immovable Property Act, 1952 and changes rules for payment of compensation.

Key Features of Bill

The bill seeks to amend a provision to allow Centre to re-issue the notice of acquisition in order to ensure that the property’s owner gets an opportunity to be heard. Through it, government intends to pay fair and just compensation to land owner.

In cases where notice has been re-issued, property owner will be entitled to interest on compensation payable to them. The re-issue of notice will not apply to cases where compensation has already been awarded and accepted by the claimants. The bill will have retrospective effect from March 14, 1952, the date of the enactment of the Act.

Significance

The amendment to the Requisitioning and Acquisition of Immovable Property Act, 1952 has been done in the interest of the security of the nation. It will help corrupt elements from taking undue advantage by misusing the litigation process.

Requisitioning and Acquisition of Immovable Property Act, 1952

The Act provides for central government to requisition immovable property or land for any public purpose such as defence, central government offices and residences. Once the purpose for which property was requisitioned is over, Central Government must returned it back to owner in good condition as it was when possession was taken.

The central government may acquire such requisitioned property in two cases. Firstly incase central government has constructed any work at such property and right to use such work is with government. Secondly incase cost of restoring requisitioned property to original condition is excessive and owner refuses to accept property without being compensated for restoring property.

Month: Categories: India Current Affairs 2018

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Pakistan Leases Gwadar port to a State-run Chinese firm for 40 years

Pakistan has leased the operations of its strategic Gwadar port to a State-run Chinese firm, the China Overseas Port Holding Company (COPHC) for a period of 40 years. COPHC is slated to carry out all the developmental work on the port situated in the Balochistan province of Pakistan. COPHC took over the operations of the port in 2013. Previously, the control of the Gwadar port was with Singapore’s PSA (Port of Singapore Authority) International.

As per the contract, 91% share of revenue collection from gross revenue of terminal and marine operations as well as 85% share from gross revenue of free zone operation will go to the COPHC. The provinces will not be given any share in the revenue collection.

Gwadar Port is a warm-water, deep-sea port situated on the Arabian Sea at Gwadar in Balochistan province of Pakistan. It is located at the mouth of the Persian Gulf just outside the strategically important Strait of Hormuz. It features as the southern Pakistan hub of the $57 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) plan. It is considered as a vital link between the Chinese One Belt, One Road initiative and the Maritime Silk Road project.

Advantages for China

Gwadar offers China a shortest route to oil-rich West Asia and Africa. China can use the port to transport fuel into north-western China, by transporting oil and gas from the port through pipelines to China’s Xinjiang province. Having Gwadar under its command would change the security dynamics for China. As China’s oil imports increase, it would prefer to insulate its energy transports from the troubled waters of the Straits of Malacca and the South China Sea.

Implications for India

Gwadar port offers serious strategic implications for India. Gwadar provides China a key listening post to observe the Indian naval activities around the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Aden. The Gwadar port, if fully operationalised, will wean Pakistan away from near-total dependence on Karachi, which is much closer to India and hence within the Indian military’s strike range. Lease of Gwadar port also helps China to encircle India (String of Pearls) and gain strategic advantage in the region. India has apprehensions that these ports could be used for military purpose as well.

Month: Categories: International Current Affairs 2018

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