India has been on the brink of adverse impacts of climate change given its huge population, inequality and poverty. As the country is growing, massive energy intensive infrastructure is being put in place and will continue to be put up in the coming future. With the unabated growth and spiraling emissions, the country is at a precarious position to be one of the largest polluters in the world. While, India is developing a strategy for low carbon growth with its ambitious renewable energy targets, a lot remains to be done.
Even as dirty air continues to mar and prematurely snuff out millions of lives in the country, the unsettling truth is that no one, neither political parties nor the voting masses, considers it grave enough to be aired loudly in the ongoing general elections. Oddly, however, it does find first-ever mention in the manifestos of the two principal political parties. But whether this would actually lead to cleaner air is anybody’s guess.
As the world’s biggest democracy goes into electoral frenzy, yet another hot and dry summer spell threatens to plunge the country into its worst water emergency. For long blithely callous to people’s water woes, any future government would choose to ignore the warning signs only at the risk of political suicide.
With its vast religious, ethnic and linguistic diversity, India provides a remarkable example of a vibrant democracy with a complex political landscape. Since independence, India has been successful at sustaining democracy, albeit disrupted at times by communal unrest and separatist and militant movements at its peripheries. In recent years, new forms of political activism by urban middle classes and youth have emerged, focusing on issues such as good governance, gender equity and freedom of expression. India’s democratic space continues to be renegotiated all along.
70 years ago, the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. We work with our partners around the world towards making democracy and human rights, dignity and freedom a reality for all. The triad of HUman Rights - Democracy- Ecological Sustainability is the basis for our work.
Shubha Chacko is a prominent LGBTQ activist from India. On the occasion of the landmark Supreme Court judgment decriminalizing a portion of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, she writes on the long fight against section 377, the challenges ahead and what it means for the society at large.
Acknowledged by many as a rising power, India’s international priorities and actions seek a greater role for itself globally and regionally. Foreign policy is being given a lot of attention as is being constantly shaped and confronted with challenges and opportunities of a multi-polar global order. Centre stage are trade, economic, defense and strategic partnerships as is India’s emerging and undisputed role in global and regional governance forums like the G-20, BRICS, ASEAN, BIMSTEC. Undeniably, India is a weighty player in multi-lateral negotiations of trade and climate talks and at global institutions such as the IAEA, seeking to change the rules at the IMF and a permanent seat for itself at the UN Security Council. Furthermore, India’s new status as a donor and a stakeholder in the emerging international financial architecture such as the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank and the New Development Bank is giving it strategic and political mileage.
The on-going meeting of the 21st Century Panglong Conference of Myanmar is expected to bring together all ethnic nationalities and government negotiators to build a democratic federal union. A keynote addressed by former Indian Ambassador to Myanmar, Gautam Mukhopadhya at a conference on "Federalism and India-Myanmar Relations" in Mizoram.