This expert-driven national-security insight can’t be generated for free. We invite you to support quality content by becoming a Cipher Brief Level I Member . Joining this experienced security-focused community is only $10/month (for an annual $120/yr membership). It’s a great and inexpensive way to stay ahead of the national and global security issues that impact you the most.
The post The Real Danger in a Quiet Escalation of Tensions Between China and India appeared first on The Cipher Brief.
Washington (AFP) – A US government panel on Tuesday called for India to be put on a religious freedom blacklist over a “drastic” downturn under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, triggering a sharp rebuttal from New Delhi.
The US Commission on International Religious Freedom recommends but does not set policy, and there is virtually no chance the State Department will follow its lead on India, an increasingly close US ally.
In an annual report, the bipartisan panel narrowly agreed that India should join the ranks of “countries of particular concern” that would be subject to sanctions if they do not improve their records.
“In 2019, religious freedom conditions in India experienced a drastic turn downward, with religious minorities under increasing assault,” the report said.
It called on the United States to impose punitive measures, including visa bans, on Indian officials believed responsible and grant funding to civil society groups that monitor hate speech.
The commission said that Modi’s Hindu nationalist government, which won a convincing election victory last year, “allowed violence against minorities and their houses of worship to continue with impunity, and also engaged in and tolerated hate speech and incitement to violence.”
It pointed to comments by Home Minister Amit Shah, who notoriously referred to mostly Muslim migrants as “termites,” and to a citizenship law that has triggered nationwide protests.
It also highlighted the revocation of the autonomy of Kashmir, which was India’s only Muslim-majority state, and allegations that Delhi police turned a blind eye to mobs who attacked Muslim neighborhoods in February this year.
The Indian government, long irritated by the commission’s comments, quickly rejected the report.
“Its biased and tendentious comments against India are not new. But on this occasion, its misrepresentation has reached new levels,” foreign ministry spokesman Anurag Srivastava said.
“We regard it as an organization of particular concern and will treat it accordingly,” he said in a statement.
The State Department designates nine “countries of particular concern” on religious freedom — China, Eritrea, Iran, Myanmar, North Korea, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan.
The commission asked that all nine countries remain on the list. In addition to India, it sought the inclusion of four more — Nigeria, Russia, Syria and Vietnam.
Pakistan, India’s historic rival, was added by the State Department in 2018 after years of appeals by the commission.
In its latest report, the commission said that Pakistan “continued to trend negatively,” voicing alarm at forced conversions of Hindus and other minorities, abuse of blasphemy prosecutions and a ban on the Ahmadi sect calling itself Muslim.
– ‘Tipping point’ –
India’s citizenship law fast-tracks naturalization for minorities from neighboring countries — but not if they are Muslim.
Modi’s government says it is not targeting Muslims but rather providing refuge to persecuted people and should be commended.
But critics consider it a watershed move by Modi to define the world’s largest democracy as a Hindu nation and chip away at independent India’s founding principle of secularism.
Tony Perkins, the commission’s chair, called the law a “tipping point” and voiced concern about a registry in the northeastern state of Assam, under which 1.9 million people failed to produce documentation to prove that they were Indian citizens before 1971, when mostly Muslim migrants flowed in during Bangladesh’s bloody war of independence.
“The intentions of the national leaders are to bring this about throughout the entire country,” Perkins told an online news conference.
“You could potentially have 100 million people, mostly Muslims, left stateless because of their religion. That would be, obviously, an international issue,” said Perkins, a Christian activist known for his opposition to gay rights who is close to President Donald Trump’s administration.
Three of the nine commissioners dissented — including another prominent Christian conservative, Gary Bauer, who voiced alarm about India’s direction but said the ally could not be likened to non-democracies such as China.
“I am deeply concerned that this public denunciation risks exactly the opposite outcome than the one we all desire,” Bauer said.
Trump, who called for a ban on Muslim immigration to the US when he ran for president, hailed Modi on a February visit to New Delhi.
Video showed three people, dressed in protective gear, spraying the liquid directly on a group of Indian workers as they sat on the ground in the northern city of Bareilly.
Ashok Gautam, a senior officer in charge of Covid-19 operations in Uttar Pradesh, told CNN as many as 5,000 people have been “publicly sprayed” when they arrived before they were allowed to disperse.
“We sprayed them here as part of the disinfection drive, we don’t want them to be carriers for the virus and it could be hanging on their clothes, now all borders have been sealed so this won’t happen again,” he said.
He said the disinfectant used was a solution made from bleaching powder, and was not harmful to the human body.
While chemical disinfectants work on surfaces, they can be dangerous to people. And according to the World Health Organization (WHO), putting disinfectant on your skin will not kill it if the virus is already in your body.
The chemical wash has appalled many in India. Lav Agarwal, senior official at the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, said Monday that local officials involved in the incident have been “reprimanded,” adding that spraying migrant workers was not a “required” policy in the country.
“This is an overzealous action done by some employees at the field level, either out of ignorance or fear,” he said.
The district magistrate of Bareilly, Nitish Kumar, also tweeted that while the municipal corporation and local fire service were under orders to sanitize buses, they were “overzealous” in spraying the migrant workers directly.
“Orders to launch an inquiry against those responsible have been given,” he said.
Kumar, who is the highest-ranking district official in the city, added that workers affected by the incident are currently under medical surveillance following instructions from the chief medical officer.
Tens of thousands of India’s 45 million economic migrant workers have been making a long, arduous journeys back to their rural villages. Many of them had lost their jobs as businesses’ shut their doors across India’s cities due to the lockdown.
On Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged all states to seal their borders to stop the virus being imported into rural areas. Officials are now scrambling to find millions of migrant workers who had already returned to small towns and villages across the country, in order to quarantine them for 14 days.
Malaysia’s trade minister is open to meeting his Indian counterpart at the World Economic Forum gathering this week, his ministry said on Monday, after New Delhi said no such encounter was possible amid a spat over palm oil supplies, Trend reports citing Reuters.
It was the second time in the last four days Malaysia expressed the possibility of such a meeting in Davos, during a standoff between a major supplier and buyer of palm oil caused by Malaysia’s criticism of Indian policies.
Malaysia’s Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) reiterated that India’s trade ministry first sent a request on Dec. 24 – before India placed curbs on imports of refined palm oil – for a bilateral meeting between the two ministers in Davos.
“In the spirit of economic partnership between our two nations, Malaysia has made every effort to accommodate the official request by India, but due to the busy schedule of both ministers, a mutually agreeable time has not been reached at the time of this statement,” MITI said.
“In the absence of a formal meeting, it is common for interested parties to meet informally and exchange views on the sidelines.”
It said MITI minister Darell Leiking “has expressed his openness to such discussion” with his Indian counterpart Piyush Goyal, mainly regarding India’s participation in the trade bloc Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.
An Indian trade ministry official, speaking on behalf of the ministry, told Reuters on Sunday that Goyal would not meet Leiking in Davos because of his tight schedule. No other meeting was scheduled between them, he said.
Hindu-majority India has been agitated by Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad last month speaking out against a new citizenship law which critics say discriminate against Muslims. Mahathir had angered New Delhi last year too when he accused India of invading and occupying Kashmir, a Muslim-majority disputed region also claimed by Pakistan.
Malaysia, a Muslim-majority nation, is the second biggest producer and exporter of palm oil and India’s restrictions on the refined variety of the commodity imposed on Jan. 8 have been seen as a retaliation for Mahathir’s words.
Mahathir, the world’s oldest premier at 94, told a small group of reporters including from Reuters on Monday that India’s new citizenship law was “grossly unfair”.
But he said his nation of 32 million people was too small to take retaliatory action against India following its palm curbs.
Since the restrictions, thousands of tonnes of refined palm oil have been delayed or got stuck at various Indian ports, multiple sources told Reuters.
Follow Trend on Telegram. Only most interesting and important news
30th over: Australia 197-0 (Warner 96, Finch 83) Target 256. Ohhhh! Warner is now batting without anything on his head. He’s going to bring up an international ton without a helmet or a hat. What a wonderful development. He’s four closer to that with a hammered cover drive, pinging Kuldeep to the rope in an instant.
28th over: Australia 187-0 (Warner 89, Finch 81) Target 256. Michael Slater could not be more excited about how this has all played out tonight. Good on him – I’m probably a bit of a Slats apologist, in truth. He gets another moment to celebrate when Warner jumps across his stumps to glance Thakur away for four more. This reminds me of when this two knocked England over without losing a wicket at the MCG to start the ODI series against England in January 2014.
“Any word on Pant?” asks Brandon Green on twitter. “Know he copped a concussion, was it the ricochet from his bat that he was out on?”
We haven’t had anything further on the TV broadcast. And yes, I believe that’s when he did it – that’s certainly what they brought up on screen at the start of this chase when explaining why the Indian wicketkeeper is off the ground.
27th over: Australia 179-0 (Warner 83, Finch 80) Target 256. Jadeja does what he does best: racing through a 60-second over before they’ve had a chance to really look up. In saying that, three singles come, Finch joining Warner in the 80s.
26th over: Australia 176-0 (Warner 82, Finch 79) Target 256. Thakur to Finch, and down the legside to begin. No good. He’s back where he needs to be after that but with just over three an over needed, they are comfortable with that approach.
“Hi Adam, Hope you’re well.” And you, Ruth Purdue! “It may be a tired topic but can I call for Maxwell to be in the team again? That genius needs to be on the platform he deserves.”
No complaints from these quarters. However, I’m glad he’s been left at home to dominate the BBL. That’ll live longer in the memory than this series. He can then return for the New Zealand matches in March before the IPL. Something like that?
25th over: Australia 172-0 (Warner 81, Finch 77) Target 256. Warner gets into the 80s first, albeit off another edge. He went hard at Jadeja, who did him in flight, saved only by the inside feather of his blade. Sure enough, given the way these two have gone tonight, it evades Rahul’s gloves and runs away for four. The crowd are chanting for Kohli? Or is it Dhoni? Probably the latter, come to think of it.
24th over: Australia 166-0 (Warner 76, Finch 76) Target 256. Australia are on track to get this inside 40 overs – what a performance. Ten more added here, Finch joining Warner in the 70s lashing Shami through point, then drawing level on 76 off the outside edge. It doesn’t matter from here, they’re toying with the hosts.
23rd over: Australia 156-0 (Warner 76, Finch 66) Target 256. Kuldeep now bowling his seventh over, worked through the legside early in the over – the 150 partnership coming along the way, the fourth time this pair have achieved that – before Warner decides to go BANG over long on for SIX! The third time he’s cleared that boundary through the course of this fantastic innings. 100 runs to go.
“This has been a magnificent effort by our Australian friends against a very good Indian side,” observes Martin Fairhurst. “I look forward to the rest of the series – can India fight back? It’s food for thought too for the upcoming T20 World Cup this year in Australia.”
That’s where all roads lead for this Australian white-ball team after this series. They have never won (or hosted) the T20 World Cup before, of course.
22nd over: Australia 146-0 (Warner 69, Finch 63) Target 256. Despite the fact that we’re only 21 overs into this chase, India are just about up to their last chance with Shami now back into the attack. Mindful of this, I’m sure, there are no risks here. Finch did get a chance to cut and did so well but Jadeja was at backward point with the flying stop, pulling the ball down without a bother. What a gem he is.
21st over: Australia 143-0 (Warner 67, Finch 62) Target 256. Kuldeep beats Finch again with that googly, the bails taken by KL Rahul. It’s sent upstairs to check for the stumping his foot never leaves the ground. A couple of singles are Australia’s lot until the final ball, which spins down the legside. Kuldeep, re-bowling that delivery, is insistent that he has Finch lbw to finish but it’s turned down. Kohli, upon realising that he already torched his review, gets in the umpire’s face. In my experience, umpires don’t tend to change their minds after they’ve said not out.
“This opening stand has been antithetical to the Indian approach when it comes to constructing an ODI innings,” writes Abhijato Sensarma. “The openers are willing to take risks and not rely on solely running between the wickets during the early stages of the game. England have proved that you can be successful with this approach, especially by taking out the fine margins which come with lower scores produced as a result of caution. Hopefully the home side’s management decides to put enough faith in the entire line-up to back the top three to unleash their full potential for aggression henceforth, because their current approach seems more outdated with every passing day.”
20th over: Australia 140-0 (Warner 66, Finch 61) Target 256. So, India have burned their review now too. Before the appeal, Warner was given another half-tracker by the usually-accurate tweaker, once again carving it for four. Cruise control.
19th over: Australia 133-0 (Warner 61, Finch 60) Target 256. Some good news here: Warner has called for his canary yellow cap. When I’m king, the Baggy Gold will return to the kit for Australian ODI players – one day. But small steps. The next is the gold helmet, which they haven’t used for about 15 years. None of this is probably of interest to Finch, the captain well on top of Kuldeep’s top spinner to start the new over, crunching it past point for his ninth four. The required rate is under four an over now, with both openers wonderfully placed to reach tons.
18th over: Australia 125-0 (Warner 58, Finch 55) Target 256. Jadeja has Finch in a bit of bother early in the over, finding his leading edge when trying to tuck him into the legside. But just when the experienced spinner seems to have found a groove, he gives a half-tracker to Warner, slapped away for four past cover. Easy.
17th over: Australia 118-0 (Warner 54, Finch 52) Target 256. India are going to have to bowl Australia out, that much is clear. Kohli looks relatively calm at drinks, avoiding the temptation to give his charges a spray. Kuldeep has been the man most likely so far, at Finch at least, so they are happy enough taking the singles on offer rather than attacking the boundary. There really is no rush whatsoever.
16th over: Australia 115-0 (Warner 53, Finch 50) Target 256. With one to cover off Bumrah, the Australian captain raises his bat from his 52nd ball – the 39th time he’s made at least 50 in an ODI. It’s another good set from Bumrah but he is already through half of his overs with 31 taken from them. DRINKS are called with Australia needing just 141 further runs at 4.2 per over from here. Top batting.
15th over: Australia 110-0 (Warner 50, Finch 49) Target 256. For real this time, Warner is the man who gets to raise his bat for the first half-century of the innings with a single down the ground off Kuldeep. He reaches the mark in 40 deliveries, the 38th time he’s gone beyond 50 in ODIs. The wrong’un has Finch in a bit of strife for a second time, beating his edge when attempting to cut. In turn, the captain elects to defend the rest of the over. The best set of India’s defence.
14th over: Australia 109-0 (Warner 49, Finch 49) Target 256. Anything Finch can do, is it? Warner starts this new over – Bumrah back into the attack – with another imposing pull shot, giving the sweeper no chance to cut it off. Bumrah is too classy for that to bother him that much, beating the outside edge with one that goes a long way with the angle. Later, in at Finch, he bowls a very similar delivery and cuts the right-hander in half. It’s such a good delivery that after pitching off and clearing leg, it beats the ‘keeper’s gloves, running away for four byes. Ouch.
13th over: Australia 100-0 (Warner 44, Finch 49) Target 256. It’s a bit unclear, some scoreboards online/at the ground putting Finch beyond the milestone, others leaving him one short. He certainly raised the bat when smashing Kuldeep right back over his head for SIX early in the over, also bringing up the Australian 100. Anyway, whether or not the personal milestone has been reached (I suspect it hasn’t), this has been a wonderful partnership, going at 7.7 runs an over.
12th over: Australia 94-0 (Warner 44, Finch 43) Target 256. Jadeja joins Kuldeep at the bowling crease and Warner makes an immediate statement, flat-batting the orthodox tweaker over midwicket for SIX MORE! The required rate is now 4.3.
11th over: Australia 87-0 (Warner 38, Finch 43) Target 256. They nearly get one first ball after the field is spread, Kuldeep winning Finch’s top edge via a misread googly. He’s very lucky that didn’t go to hand. As is the custom in the over after the power play, they play the rest conservatively after that near mishap. Of course, the left-arm wristspinner has been extremely effective against Australia.
10th over: Australia 84-0 (Warner 37, Finch 41) Target 256. What a power play for this pair, sticking the landing with 13 further runs before the field goes out. Warner pulled Thakur twice in identical fashion, prompting a ropey bouncer, called a wide. They’re running wonderfully, too. India need something… right now.
9th over: Australia 71-0 (Warner 26, Finch 40) Target 256. Ten more runs are piled on here, Finch striking another picture-perfect cover drive to begin Shami’s new spell, spun around to follow Bumrah. He then overcorrects with an offering that’s too short, slapped away for four more by the skipper. India are in a fair bit of strife.
8th over: Australia 61-0 (Warner 25, Finch 31) Target 256. BIIIIIG from Warner! Thakur was excellent the first time around but the opener has his measure now, popping him way back into the crowd at midwicket for Australia’s first SIX of their chase. Earlier in the over, with his eye well and truly in now, he picked up the seamer over mid-on for four then heaved him over square leg for another. 15 off it. The required rate for the Australians from here is already just 4.64 an over.
7th over: Australia 46-0 (Warner 11, Finch 31) Target 256. Warner moves to 5000 ODIruns with his best shot of the innings so far, a punishing pull through square leg off Bumrah. The TV tells us that he has reached the mark (in 115 innings) faster than every batsman with the exception of Amla (101), Richards and Kohli (both 114). He celebrates with another four, through point this time. Here we go.
There’s some further commentary chat about Marnus’ name, the message through to the box about the Labu-shane preference. That’s accurate to an extent. I was there when this first came up when he joined the team in 2018 in the UAE. He was clear then that the Australianised version was fine with him because it was easier but he was equally happy with the accurate pronunciation being used.
6th over: Australia 36-0 (Warner 6, Finch 27) Target 256. Earlier in the over, Warner was also fortunate to survive a leg before shout from the new bowler Thakur, beaten on the inside edge from a delivery that really hooped in at him from around the wicket. Despite hitting his back pad, it was given out on the field. The technology showed that it would have been umpire’s call had it been reviewed. A eventful and frugal start from the first-change seamer.
5th over: Australia 33-0 (Warner 5, Finch 25) Target 256. Four more! Of Finch’s five boundaries, four of them have been through point, this another square drive from the very middle of his bat. Warner, by contrast, is being kept quiet by Shami. He’s helped by a misfield at midwicket from the final ball, three taken from a compact push. The TV commentators are having the usual debate about Marnus Labuschagne’s name, Murali Karthik making the very reasonable point that it is a South African/Afrikaans name and deserves to be pronounced accordingly.
4th over: Australia 25-0 (Warner 2, Finch 21) Target 256. Finch is flying here, 11 taken from this Bumrah over. He timed the pants off his first boundary, skipping through cover with no backswing required; only a forward push. The second is an even better stroke, off the back foot through point. Exceptional batting.
“Nothing gives me a greater satisfaction than V Kohli facing the mic after a loss,” says Krishnamoorthy. That’s quite punchy! An interesting read last weekend about the Indian skipper and the high-regard he’s held in off the field.
3rd over: Australia 14-0 (Warner 2, Finch 11) Target 256. Shot! Finch gets forward to Shami early in his fresh over, crashing him through the covers for a second boundary, quickly into double figures. Later in the set, Warner nearly does the same but Pandey, on the field at cover as Pant’s substitute, makes a well-timed diving stop. Shami beats the left-hander with a beauty to finish, angling in from around the wicket before straightening off the seam. That’s where he’s so good.
2nd over: Australia 8-0 (Warner 1, Finch 6) Target 256. Bumrah to Warner, who leaves carefully to begin before getting off strike with a delivery that smashes into his thigh pad. Finch’s turn to take on his old nemesis and he pushes him with lovely timing through point for a couple. Given how frequently Bumrah has crashed into his stumps over the last 18 months, that’ll help with his confidence.
“Hiya Adam.” Emails Peter Gibbs, watching with his mum – loyal OBOers! “Happy New Year to you and all.” Great to have you with us. You can also drop me a line.
1st over: Australia 5-0 (Warner 1, Finch 4) Warner is off the mark down to third man, Shami finding the outside slither of his bat second ball. Finch is moving first up himself, throwing his hands at a wide half volley and placing it safely enough through the gap at point for four. There’s an update on the commentary explaining why KL Rahul has the gloves for India: Rishabh Pant is off the field after copping a whack to the head during his innings of 28 earlier. He hasn’t yet been subbed out.
The players are back on the field in Mumbai! To begin, Warner and Finch against Bumrah and Shami, the latter taking the first over. It doesn’t come much tastier than that in one-day international cricket. The visitors’ target is 256. PLAY!
Something of mine to plug, too. For those of you who followed the 1999 World Cup podcast last year, we’re back on The Greatest Season That Was with another walk down memory lane, this time documenting the famous 1994-95 Australia ‘A’ series. Yes, that was the summer where administrators brought a fourth team into the traditional ODI series because they didn’t trust England or Zimbabwe to put up much of a fight for Mark Taylor’s men. It turned out to be an inspired decision.
Thanks, JP. Our man put in a huge tennis shift today before taking care of the first innings. Well played. Australia did that nicely, denying India the chance to explode the old fashioned way with consistent wickets in the middle overs.
You find me watching Star’s coverage in London, where Michael Slater is currently learning Hindi. Just another day in 2020. Good afternoon/evening to you all.
Australia will be the happier of the two sides at the changeover. They never allowed India to get away from them, took wickets at regular intervals after that long second-wicket partnership, and they will be confident of chasing down 255 with the fast outfield at the Wankhede Stadium, especially if the dew settles and makes bowling awkward.
The three pacemen all bowled superbly, each deserving their multiple-wicket hauls, while the two spinners kept India in check when their innings was meandering.
Not a great day at the office for India’s much vaunted batsmen. Rohit and Kohli both fell cheaply while Dhawan was one of a number of Indians to give their wicket away needlessly.
Find out if Australia can chase down 256 with the incomparable Adam Collins.
Lovely from Kuldeep, giving himself room and drilling Starc through the covers for four, the bowler then overreaches with his reply and flings a wide well down the leg-side. Four more for Kuldeep! Stand and deliver this time, walloping Starc back over his head. The crowd is back into this and India, creeping over 250, have something to defend.
They might not get much more than 250 though because Kuldeep has run himself out, chancing Steve Smith’s arm with a suicidal single and coming a cropper. Smith threw down the stumps from the ring behind point with plenty of time to pick his target. I was only thinking the other day how few direct run outs we see, considering the increase in fielding drills.
48th over: India 243-8 (Shami 9, Kuldeep 7) Richardson returns in the final bowling change of the innings, and he sends down a beauty. Slower balls, line and length, bumpers, the full shebang, and India can only muster three singles.
47th over: India 240-8 (Shami 8, Kuldeep 5) Starc, like Cummins before him, is not a bowler these batsmen are capable of dispatching with ease. Five deliveries go for very little but spirits are lifted in the crowd when an attempted yorker becomes a full toss and Shami gets enough bat on it to pierce the covers for four.
Slightly off topic, but very interesting nonetheless.
46th over: India 233-8 (Shami 3, Kuldeep 3) India’s tail does its best to keep the runs flowing but Pat Cummins is too good to take on. Three singles off the over leaves Cummins with figures of 2/44 from his ten. Another outstanding performance from the star paceman.
Ian Forth, a key contributor to the hive mind, has come good for Martin Fairhurst. “George Lohmann has the best Test strike-rate amongst all bowlers from any country at 34.2 which is a clear 3.6 off second place (qualification: 2,000 balls). Amongst English test bowlers this century it’s Simon Jones at 47.8, while amongst players still active Steve Finn has a 51.2 SR (but hasn’t played since 2016) while Jimmy Anderson’s is 56.1.”
And Pete Naylor has done the ODI maths for goo dmeasure.
Shardul gets a life. He mistimes a very full toss from Starc that looks to be heading to Richardson at long-on but the fielder is slow to move off the fence and drops what becomes a difficult diving effort. Then it’s Shami’s turn to deny Starc another scalp! The on-field decision is out when Starc appeals for LBW after hitting the batsman’s toes but India review and ball tracking indicates leg stump was not in the missile’s flightpath.
Finally, finally Starc has his pole. And that’s the way to do it, remove any chance of a fielder dropping a catch or an LBW appeal not being upheld by making the mess of the stumps with a searing yorker. Sublime pace bowling at the death.
44th over: India 227-7 (Shardul 12, Shami 1) Excellent bouncer from Cummins there on his recall into the attack, too quick for Pant who, I presume, the umpire was expecting to walk. Australia into the bowlers now, but they’re swinging and swinging hard! Consecutive boundaries for Shardul, the first not timed purely over extra cover, the second pulled with the angle down to fine-leg.
Related: Representative Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey, a moderate Democrat who is a staunch opponent of impeaching Mr. Trump, plans to declare himself a Republican as soon as this week.
Unequal preparation for 2020 census
Before the next nationwide head count, some states are spending millions of dollars in an effort to maximize population totals and, by extension, their share of federal resources and representation in Congress. Other states are spending nothing.
Why it matters: An accurate census would include more people from harder-to-count groups like Hispanics and the poor, who tend to vote Democratic. If they don’t participate, the census would skew Republican, as would political maps based on the results.
The details: California, with nearly 40 million residents, is set to introduce a $187 million campaign to encourage participation. Texas, the second-most-populous state, with 29 million residents, has elected not to spend any money, although volunteers are trying to fill the gap.
The decade when tech lost its way
In 2010, technology offered the promise of new connections, cars that could drive themselves and social networks that could take down dictators.
Since then, its flaws have become abundantly clear. To find out what happened, The Times spoke to Mark Zuckerberg, Edward Snowden, Ellen Pao and other leading figures in the tech world. Here, in their own words, are their explanations.
Regulatory hurdles are among the causes, including in Ontario and Quebec, Canada’s most populous provinces, which have been slow to open or license legal pot shops.
Another angle: Despite the business disappointments, there hasn’t been much change in marijuana use.
What’s next: Marijuana companies, whose share values have fallen in the past year, hope for a turnaround, starting today, when marijuana-laced drinks and foods join the legal market in Canada.
If you have some time, this is worth it
From hit man to state witness
By his early 20s, he had become a deadly assassin, or sicario, and an instrument of the drug cartels that are tearing Mexico apart. So when the police caught him, they saw a chance to take down a cartel from the inside.
No concessions at climate talks: An annual United Nations meeting ended with the U.S. and other major polluters blocking a measure that would have encouraged countries to adopt more ambitious targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Chinese espionage suspects: The U.S. secretly expelled two Chinese Embassy officials this fall after they drove onto a military base in Virginia. The expulsions appear to be the first of Chinese diplomats suspected of espionage in more than 30 years.
Warning for North Korea: The top U.S. envoy on North Korea said today that an expected weapons test by Pyongyang in the coming days would be “most unhelpful.”
Riots in India: Violent demonstrations spread across the country after lawmakers approved a citizenship bill last week that would give special treatment to Hindu and other non-Muslim migrants.
Snapshot: Above, an artist’s rendering of the winning design for a museum to be built in Orlando, Fla., near where a gunman killed 49 people in 2016 at Pulse, a gay nightclub. The plans for the $45 million project, which includes a permanent memorial, have upset some survivors and families of the victims.
In memoriam: Anna Karina, a Danish-born actress, became a symbol of French New Wave cinema in the 1960s in the films of the director Jean-Luc Godard. She died on Saturday at 79.
N.F.L. results: Eight of the league’s 12 playoff spots have been secured. Here’s what else we learned in Week 15.
Metropolitan Diary: In this week’s column, dropped keys, a broken heart and more reader tales of New York City.
What we’re watching: This 2016 Polish ad for an online marketplace, which our climate reporter John Schwartz just ran across. “I am sappy,” he writes. “Commercials can make me cry. This one did. Enjoy.”
Smarter Living: If you feel that you regress when you go home for the holidays, you’re not alone. We have tips for how to manage the stress.
And now for the Back Story on …
The Oxford English Dictionary defines Shazam as “a ‘magic’ word” that introduces “an extraordinary deed or story.”
You may know it from slang, or because of the Shazam app, which identifies music after “listening” to a snippet. But the O.E.D. credits the first use to a comic book 80 years ago.
It told the story of Billy Batson, an orphan who transforms into the superhero Captain Marvel by saying a word made up of the first letters of six powerful names: Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles and Mercury.
So Billy’s alter ego is now named Shazam, and fighting for market share. His Warner Brothers movie came out this year, and his archenemy Black Adam’s spinoff, starring Dwayne Johnson, is due in December 2021.
That’s it for this briefing. See you next time.
Thank you Mark Josephson and Eleanor Stanford provided the break from the news. George Gustines, an editor who covers the comic book industry for The Times, wrote today’s Back Story. You can reach the team at [email protected]
P.S. • We’re listening to “The Daily.” Today’s episode is about a secret history of the war in Afghanistan. • Here’s today’s Mini Crossword, and a clue: Annual internet award (five letters). You can find all our puzzles here. • Greg Winter, who was just named our international managing editor, began his career with The Times as a summer intern.
This era in India earmarks the journey of globalisation that began formally in the wake of the LPG (Liberalisation Privatisation and Globalisation) Policy in 1991. This is controlled almost entirely by means of information technology. It was initiated first by Rajiv Gandhi as the Prime Minister. That initiative was, however, vehemently criticised by the Leftists. It does not actually explain if there is essentially any linkage between technology and richness. Alternatively speaking, it fails to identify if technological prosperity promotes or lessens poverty. Albeit a polemic issue, it has to be accepted that technology gives a poor person the opportunity to eclipse manual labour to a great extent and prosper better. Even Marx never suggested use of improvised and rudimentary articles. What he meant for was rather socialistic management of industrialisation instead of its abolition altogether.
Whatever the case, information technology entered the Indian economy gradually in the wake of the LPG (Liberalisation Privatisation Globalisation) Policy that was undertaken by the P. V. Narasimha Rao regime in India with the help of the then Finance minister and later Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh. This Policy ushered a new era to India. Apart from the economic changes, it was also due to the versatile uses of information technology. It justifies globalisation as an extent of capitalism particularly in the sense that this is an age of finance capitalism where the movement of values is in terms of invisibles. The national income is well generated, the national growth is well quantified and the national power is well articulated particularly in terms of trade and commerce except the lacunae in the mode of that change. In other words, jobs are plentiful but most of them are volatile. As a result, pressure on the public jobs is continuously high on rise. Therefore, the worries of unemployment haunt the youth. Yet, it being the age of true competition, it requires every individual to be excellent on his/her capability to contribute to the cause of globalism of growth. Information technology is indispensable equipment in this regard.
Internet does have so many tentacles, positive as well as negative. It gives people convenient medium of exchanging news of different locations across the globe itself. As a result, any unethical incident happening at one place gets spread very fast through internet, that is, by means of various Social Networking Sites (SNSs). In this way, the emotional outburst gets the opportunity to take place in the forms of movements. These are mostly new social movements which are basically anomic in nature and mobilise people who irrespective of socio-economic backgrounds take to march in manners of civil disobedience. Thus, in case of the Nirbhaya Incident and the Anna Hazare Movement, the civic movements across the country in general and in New Delhi in particular invited State to come to terms with them in such a way that they would yield more fuel to continue their protests. Therefore, it can be said that the role of the SNS(s) ranged from public corruption to harassments of women. The magnitude of these movements was so decisive that they promoted change in political power through the General Election to the Lower Chamber (Lok Sabha) of the Parliament of India in 2014. In this way, the role of internet highlighted its communication potentials to the tune of supposing Indian democracy with strong cybernetics, which is more of a viable merit of globalisation that helps democracy being limited not only to politics but to social and economic aspects, too, that veers round again to reflect upon political democracy.
Internet is also exploited by some people with perverted characteristics. This is one of the toughest challenges to the State to overcome. In order to bridle such obnoxious usage of internet, India made legislation of the Information Technology Act in 2000 with necessary amendments following the first enactment. In 2015, the Narendra Modi regime took a commendable initiative by issuing a notification to all Internet Service License Holders regarding blocking access to the pornographic sites. But in the face of protests, that mainly took place through the SNS(s), the government had to step back by proscribing the child pornography sites only. Only legislations and strict implementations thereof cannot ensure prosperity. The proper sense of responsibility of the common people has to be very honest and respectful towards the moral aspects of life.
In conclusion, in today’s India, information technology has given primacy to the citizens the opportunity to harness their personality out of self-assessing their conditions of living amidst the surrounding happenings. This is no more an item of refreshment rather an essential equipment to move at par with the government. The government(s) nowadays are oriented to be digital. E-governance becomes an important orientation in the public sector nowadays. While on the one hand, it aims at dissolving the minimum chances of corruption, on the other, it appears to be universally accessible. E-governance aims at upliftment of the poor for whom reduction in transport cost, time and labour to that effect becomes invisible primarily but very much significant at the roots. It also makes the governance reach the citizens continuously, without any regular interruption that was a usual thing in case of providing utility services manually. Thus, there is an opportunity of utilising a 24-hour-day in its entirety. In this age of globalisation, when the public sector becomes a serious competitor of the private ones, digitisation is also a basic item that equips the public sector in that way by right. Therefore, the internet has given privileges as well as challenges to India which is new in the sense of the economic and according socio-political transformations. Overcoming challenges should be an essential target not only on the part of the State itself but also its members, that is, the citizens, even the imminent citizens as this group of population is now well versed in using internet at will.