India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

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Re: Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby Tuvaluan » 23 Feb 2015 23:09

A 1000 islands next to India and under the control of an ISIS-loving Maldives govt. is a recipe for disaster for India -- if the Indian govt. does not respond to this Islamist takeover right now, it will just make its own job to secure India internally in the long run. One has little hope that this current regime will do any better than the waffling of the previous regime, in dealing with the islamo-fascist ruling party/dictatorship in Maldives. This has been going on since the times of the dictator Gayoom, whose relative is now the maldives president. This is the official MEA response...just the usual, we are really concerned what's happening but we support the ruling govt. response, which means the GoI is about to do nothing in response, and is totally committed to that path. All this dhoti-shivering in taking on a little island state that is about to become a serious security threat is just pathetic. If India allows its enemies to remove India friendly regimes in India's bordering countries, then are they going to wait for such hostile regimes to work with larger powers and all this to fester into a pustulent sore, before reacting with force?

http://mea.gov.in/media-briefings.htm?dtl/24801/Official_Spokespersons_responseto_a_question_on_recent_developments_in_Maldives

"We are concerned at recent developments in the Maldives, including the arrest and manhandling of former President Nasheed.

We urge all concerned to calm the situation and resolve their differences within the constitutional and legal framework of Maldives.​

The Government of India reiterates its commitment to supporting the people and the Government of Maldives in their quest for peace, development, prosperity and democracy.”

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby Tuvaluan » 25 Feb 2015 04:04


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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby Prem » 28 Feb 2015 09:36

Protest against the Arrest of Ex President.

Image

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby Sridhar » 14 Mar 2015 03:06

Nasheed has been sentenced to 13 years in prison today.

http://www.haveeru.com.mv/news/59633

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby SwamyG » 18 Mar 2015 07:28

http://www.indiatvnews.com/politics/nat ... 27435.html

The three island-nation trip that took Prime Minister Modi to Seychelles, Mauritius and Sri Lanka in mid-March may well mark the beginning of India's long-overdue maritime awakening. For a nation so richly endowed with a distinctive maritime geography, the paradox has been the tenacious indifference, often veering towards inexcusable sea-blindness, that has characterised Delhi's policy orientation as regards the Indian Ocean.

However, the very fact that Modi embarked upon such a trip to three strategically important island states in the Indian Ocean which have been long neglected by way of a summit visit reflects a political determination that has the potential to become the beginning of the end of this self-inflicted strategic myopia.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby Philip » 20 Mar 2015 13:47

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/m ... -islanders

UN ruling raises hope of return for exiled Chagos islanders


Britain acted illegally, say judges in scathing ruling that upholds Mauritius’s rights and restricts US ability to expand ‘rendition’ air base on Diego Garcia

Diego Garcia, the largest island in the Chagos archipelago and site of a major US military base leased from Britain in the 1970s, when the local inhabitants were forced to leave. Photograph: Reuters Photographer / Reuters/REUTERS

Owen Bowcott Legal affairs correspondent Sam Jones
Thursday 19 March 2015

Britain acted illegally in the way it has exercised territorial control over the Chagos Islands, a UN tribunal has ruled, raising questions over the UK’s claim to sovereignty and offering hope of return to hundreds of evicted islanders.

In a withering judgment, the UK is accused of creating a marine protected area (MPA) to suit its electoral timetable, snubbing the rights of its former colony Mauritius and cosying up to the United States, which has a key military base – allegedly used for the rendition of terrorist suspects – on the largest island, Diego Garcia.

The ruling effectively throws into doubt the UK’s assertion of absolute ownership, restricts the Americans’ ability to expand their facility without Mauritian compliance and boosts the chances of exiled Chagossians being able to return to their homeland.

A dissenting opinion from two of the five judges on the permanent court of arbitration at The Hague is even more scathing, stating that “British and American defence interests were put above Mauritius’s rights” both in 1965 when the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT) was established and in 2010 when the marine zone, which involves a ban on fishing, was set up.

The ruling, which was made under the 1982 United Nations convention on the law of the sea to which the UK is a signatory, is binding. It torpedoes the status of the MPA and orders the UK and Mauritius to renegotiate. By coincidence, the government this week declared another marine protected area around Pitcairn Island in the southern Pacific.

The five-judge panel found that the creation of the MPA, announced by the former foreign secretary David Miliband in the final months of the last Labour government, breached its obligations to consult nearby Mauritius and illegally deprived it of fishing rights.

The US was “consulted in a timely manner and provided with information”, all five judges state, whereas a meeting with Mauritius in 2009 reminded the tribunal “of ships passing in the night, in which neither side fully engaged with the other regarding fishing rights or the proposal for the MPA”.

The government of Mauritius will view the judgment as a resounding victory, vindication of its ultimate right to sovereignty over the archipelago and confirmation that it must be consulted about future developments on the islands.

The UK has promised to return the Chagos Islands to Mauritius when they are no longer needed for defence purposes.

Mauritius has argued that the UK illegally detached the Chagos archipelago from Mauritius in 1965 – before the country was given its independence – contrary to UN general assembly resolution 1514, which specifically banned the breakup of colonies prior to independence.

The judgment declares: “The United Kingdom’s undertaking to return the Chagos archipelago to Mauritius gives Mauritius an interest in significant decisions that bear upon the possible future uses of the archipelago. Mauritius’ interest is not simply in the eventual return of Chagos archipelago, but also in the condition in which the archipelago will be returned.”

Relations between the UK, Mauritius and the Chagossians have been fraught ever since the 1,500 islanders were removed to make way for the US base in 1971.

The judgment refers to a disputed US telegram that records a meeting with British officials in 2009 in which one is alleged to have said: “BIOT’s former inhabitants would find it difficult, if not impossible, to pursue their claim for resettlement on the islands if the entire Chagos archipelago were a marine reserve”.

The ruling also confirms that in an exchange of notes between Washington and London during 1966 “kept secret at the time, the United States agreed to contribute £5m to the costs of establishing the BIOT, to be paid by waiving United Kingdom payments in respect of joint missile development programmes”.

Prof Philippe Sands QC, of Matrix Chambers, who was lead external counsel for Mauritius, said: “This is a historic and far-reaching judgment: for Mauritius, for Africa, for the international rule of law. It offers hope that Mauritius and Britain will be able to move forward to bring to an end an unhappy legacy of colonialism in the Chagos archipelago and Diego Garcia. It opens the door to a return to legality, in relation to matters of sovereignty and the conservation of a remarkable environmental space.”

Sabrina Jean of the Chagos Refugees Group in the UK said exiled islanders were now focused on the outcome of a study being conducted by the accountants KPMG on behalf of the Foreign Office.

“Our case is fighting for the right of return of the Chagossian community. We are focused on the feasibility study and what was said in it, and they have said that Chagossians could return. It depends on the study, but we are quite confident that a fair resettlement can be done. As we’ve always said, we Chagossians are ready to go.”

If there were to be a fair resettlement offer, she said, some of the Chagossians would definitely wish to return home, while others would want to visit the islands make up their minds.

The main judgment says: “The UK has not been able to provide any convincing explanation for the urgency with which it proclaimed the MPA on 1 April 2010,” and suggests that its “haste” was “dictated by the electoral timetable in the United Kingdom or an anticipated change of government”.

It adds: “Not only did the United Kingdom proceed on the flawed basis that Mauritius had no fishing rights in the territorial sea of the Chagos archipelago, it presumed to conclude – without ever confirming with Mauritius – that the MPA was in Mauritius’ interest.”

The two dissenting judges, James Kateka and Rüdiger Wolfrum, go further, referring to “language of intimidation” used by the then colonial secretary in the 1960s.

The two judges observe that: “The 1965 excision of the Chagos archipelago from Mauritius shows a complete disregard for the territorial integrity of Mauritius by the United Kingdom, which was the colonial power.

“British and American defence interests were put above Mauritius’ rights. Fast forward to 2010 and one finds a similar disregard of Mauritius’ rights, such as the total ban on fishing in the MPA. These are not accidental happenings.”

In effect, they find that the UK does not have sovereignty because the archipelago should never have been separated from Mauritius. The other three judges say the tribunal does not have jurisdiction to resolve this aspect of the issue.

In 2013, a spokesman for David Miliband told the Guardian: “The marine protected area has been a great step forward and went through all proper government processes.”

A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesperson said: “We are pleased that the tribunal found there was no improper motive in the creation of the MPA. There is no question about UK sovereignty in the British Indian Ocean Territory; as the legitimate power, the UK is committed to working with neighbouring states, including Mauritius, to ensure proper conservation management of the marine protected area.”

“We will now work with Mauritius to explore how its fishing ambitions are compatible with conservation in the territory.”

Poisoned waters

The declaration of a Marine Protected Area around remote Indian Ocean atolls must have appeared to the world at large to be an unqualified environmental benefit when first announced by Gordon Brown’s government in 2010.

But in the poisoned diplomatic waters surrounding the Chagos Islands, it only served to arouse suspicions that the colonial power had devised a new excuse for excluding Mauritian fishermen and preventing the return of exiled islanders.

At the heart of UK and US interests in what it known as BIOT (British Indian Ocean Territory) lies the island of Diego Garcia, a military outpost of crucial strategic significance.

BIOT was established in 1965 out of islands claimed by Mauritius. In the early 1970s, the UK government began clearing the plantations, deporting the Chagossians and clearing the land for a naval and air base to be leased to the United States military.

The gradual prising open of official files by this case and other court challenges has revealed a history of Foreign Office calculation and condescension epitomised for critics in the phrase “Man Fridays ” – deployed to undermine the notion that Chagossians were native to the islands.


Britain,through blackmail,denying Mauritius independence unless it handed over DG,acted shamefully in handing over the islands to the US to be turned into a naval/commns base with which to rule the IOR.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 21 Mar 2015 16:29

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city ... 642632.cms

BHUBANESWAR: To revive the ancient trade link among 20 Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) countries, India yesterday started an initiative. As part of it, India will take the lead in developing a set of guidelines, which will be known as common regional standard, to promote intra-regional trade, said foreign minister Sushma Swaraj.

She said customs clearance procedures at borders need to be streamlined to reduce delays and costs of transit to promote inter-country trade in the region.

The Indian Ocean Rim Association for Regional Cooperation, currently known as IORA, was formed in 1997 by Australia, India, Mauritius, Oman, Singapore and South Africa with primary focus on economic cooperation, promotion of sustained growth and balanced development of the region.

A three-day the international conference on 'India and Indian Ocean' started here. It is being organized by Research and Information System for Developing Countries and Kolkata-based Institute of Social and Cultural Studies, both autonomous organizations under the Centre. Experts in security, culture, tourism and trade from over 20 countries are participating.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 24 Mar 2015 01:20

http://echoofindia.com/editorial/timely-warning-81189
Without actually naming them, India has issued a strong warning to the United States and China not to try to play the overlord in the Indian Ocean Region. The warning was sounded at the International Conference of Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) at Bhubaneswar on Friday. It was inaugurated by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and attended by delegates from India and twenty other Indian Ocean Rim (IOR) countries of Asia and Africa. However Swaraj left it to R. N. Ravi, Chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee of the Centre to sound the warning by saying that no Big Power should try to turn the Indian Ocean Region as a chessboard for power politics.


Hmm, does this belong here or is it more appropriate in the geopolitical thread?

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 24 Mar 2015 17:40

http://www.business-standard.com/articl ... 712_1.html

Mauritius has promised full cooperation with India to address outstanding issues relating to their bilateral tax treaty, days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the island nation.

The much-talked about changes in India-Mauritius Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA) have been hanging fire for a long time, despite several rounds of official level talks between the two sides.

Apprehensions persist that Mauritius is being used for round-tripping of funds into India even though the island nation has always maintained that there have been no concrete evidence of any such misuse.

Mauritius has been one of the largest sources for foreign direct investment in India and inflows touched USD 7.66 billion in the April 2014-January 2015 period.

Reflecting the importance that Mauritius attaches to India, the reference about the bilateral tax agreement was made by its Finance Minister Seetanah Lutchmeenaraidoo in his Budget speech yesterday.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 29 Mar 2015 20:12

http://minivannews.com/politics/governm ... yn6yR.dpbs

Letters from the government to stakeholders in India as well as the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights concerning the trial and conviction of former President Mohamed Nasheed contains several demonstrably false claims. - See more at: http://minivannews.com/politics/governm ... yn6yR.dpuf

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 05 Apr 2015 06:02

http://www.business-standard.com/articl ... 680_1.html

Mauritius opened up its $1.5 billion market for Indian mangoes, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi had visited that country recently.

For several years, Mauritius was not issuing sanitary and phyto-sanitary clearances to Indian mangoes, thanks to fear of fruit flies in cargoes. But, emphasising the need of improving regional co-operation, the Indian government took up the matter with highest authorities in Mauritius. Following that, Modi held extensive meeting with his Mauritian counterpart Anerood Jugnauth on his recent tour to the eastern countries.

The governments of India and the tiny island country in the east signed an agreement in early March under which Indian exporters can ship mangoes to Mauritius between April 1 and August 31.

"Until now, we were not receiving clearances for mango consignments from Mauritius, as local authorities in that country were not issuing required certificates. Now, we will be able to supply mangoes to Mauritius," said Insaram Ali, president, All India Mango Producers' Association.

Mauritius imports a large quantity of mango from Pakistan due to price competitiveness. Mango export from Pakistan works out to cheaper for that country than that from India. But, non-availability of the king of mango - Alphonso - and certain other varieties might give India some advantages over Pakistan.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 08 Apr 2015 16:21

This Bangladeshi opinion piece shows how much work remains to be done.
http://www.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/2015/04/08/87981

Never before had media occupied a centre-stage in any conference of an international forum as it did at Bhubenswar of Orissa on March 20-23 this year. The conference was related to 'India and the Indian Ocean' where researchers from all the member-states of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) including Bangladesh took part in its rich deliberations. Bangladesh was officially represented by its Foreign Secretary.

It was at a session on 'Blue Economy', moderated by the Bangladesh foreign secretary, where the media's role came into sharp focus. The session was told by this writer as a resource-person that the organisers deserved thanks for inviting a media person for the first time to join its proceedings. There ought to have been some others from other countries of the region. The session was told amid clappings of the audience that the organisations like the IORA, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) have virtually blacked out media focus on their activities and important research findings. There are hundreds of researchers who have produced, by this time, authoritative research on which issues these bodies were established to tackle for greater benefit of the people. All the findings are gathering dust on them.

The IORA session was told that the three-day deliberations saw disclosure of many hitherto-unknown facts and figures about huge resources lying unexploited in the region due to lack of united efforts. But these findings remained stuck within the four walls of the halls where these were revealed. And valuable papers lie inside the bags the researchers carried for the conference without invaluable info disseminated to other researchers elsewhere and common people. Such transfer of ideas could only be facilitated through the media-both print and electronic.

It is unfortunate that today an educated man in Bangladesh is still unaware of how many provinces Sri Lanka has or what the natural resources India has or whether these could be imported by other member-states. Most of them even do not know how many affiliate bodies the SAARC or the ASEAN has nor do common people know what India possesses to mitigate climate change there so that Bangladesh could replicate its example effectively for itself.

India has successfully developed many low-cost indigenous technologies for beneficial use in countries like Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Afghanistan or the Maldives. But these technologies are still unknown to others as there is sadly no media focus.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 20 Apr 2015 21:38

http://atimes.com/2015/04/indias-surgin ... -location/
By Dr. Sudha Ramachandran

The massive hike in India’s aid allocation to the Maldives this year underscores the enhanced priority it accords this Indian Ocean archipelago. In a sharp jump from the $4 million it set aside for the Maldives last year, India’s Ministry of External Affairs has allocated $30 million for it in 2015-16.

As in the past, South Asia (excluding Pakistan) hogs the bulk of India’s development aid largess, accounting for 84% of the $1.6 billion foreign aid allocated for 2015-16. Bhutan continues to get most of this aid (63%), with Afghanistan (7%), Sri Lanka (5%), Nepal (4%) and Bangladesh (3%) trailing far behind. While the Maldives will receive just 2% of India’s aid in 2015-16, it’s significant that its share has undergone a roughly seven-fold increase from last year.

The Maldives consists of 1,192 coral islands strewn across the equator over an area of 90,000 sq kms. While the archipelago’s stunning physical features i.e. its emerald green waters and pristine beaches attract tourists, it is its geographic location that contributes to its strategic significance and draws the attention of the big powers. The Maldives sits along major sea lanes, including the East-West shipping route through which much of Middle East oil headed for East Asia is transported. The archipelago is located just 340 km from the Indian coast.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 21 Apr 2015 16:37

http://www.hindustantimes.com/jalandhar ... 39227.aspx

Hailing Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ project, Mauritius President Rajkeswur Purryag on Monday said the campaign had the capacity to make India a global economic power.

Purryag, who is here for the two-day annual convocation of Lovely Professional University (LPU), showered praise on the youth of India, saying that they were an important aspect of Modi’s dream project.

“But ‘Make in India’ will only be possible if the youth of this country are competitive and productive. I hope to see this happen and that will make India a global power in the coming years,” said Purryag. An honoris causa degree was conferred upon the President by LPU on the occasion.

“India is definitely going to be the next super economy,” said Purryag, whose grandfather had migrated from Bihar to Mauritius.


photo caption: Mauritius President Rajkeswur Purryag along with his wife Anita Purryag pay obeisance at Golden Temple in Amritsar.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 28 Apr 2015 19:08

Analysis: "India’s renewed push into the Indian Ocean"
http://www.eastasiaforum.org/2015/04/28 ... ian-ocean/
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent visit to Seychelles, Mauritius and Sri Lanka reflects New Delhi’s changed foreign policy priorities. It signals that India is no longer willing to be outmanoeuvred in the Indian Ocean region — its strategic backyard.


The author: "Rupakjyoti Borah is a former Visiting Research Fellow at the Japan Institute of International Affairs."

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby ramana » 02 May 2015 01:52

A gaggle of exhibitions at US museums on India and SE Asia in 5th to 8th centuries

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archive ... -kingdoms/

Very good review by William Dalrymple

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 04 May 2015 15:50

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/indi ... 143659.cms

NEW DELHI: As Maldives President Abdulla Yameen puts almost all his political opposition in jail, India is taking an increasingly dim view of a neighbour whose government appears intent on driving the country into instability.

Former president Nasheed's imprisonment and ill-treatment have led to increasing numbers of rallies and demonstrations in Male, which according to Maldives government were deemed "violent and not peaceful".

Adhaalath Party leader Sheikh Imran Abdulla, Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) chairperson Ali Waheed and Jumhooree Party (JP)'s deputy leader Ameen Ibrahim were arrested on Friday night for the protests. Adhaalath said, "With Abdulla's arrest, the government has put two of the three opposition leaders behind bars. The third opposition leader, Qasim Ibrahim, is now having his business targeted."

India has sent messages to the Maldives government, because it retains the sensitivity of a bigger neighbour. However, with almost the entire opposition up in arms against Yameen, India will be called upon to act in the coming days. PM Narendra Modi skipping Maldives during his Indian Ocean yatra is being seen as a deliberate snub, and one that had serious repercussions within Maldives.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby SSridhar » 04 May 2015 17:59

A_Gupta wrote:Analysis: "India’s renewed push into the Indian Ocean"
http://www.eastasiaforum.org/2015/04/28 ... ian-ocean/
But New Delhi’s problems do not seem to have ended. Many Indian Ocean nations are wary of aligning with either India or China and will therefore try to get the best out of both of these powers. India’s reticence in reaching out to these countries in the past led them to open up to Beijing. This trend will continue as Beijing, flush with both economic and military muscle, tries to secure sea-lanes to carry minerals and energy resources from the Middle East and Africa to China.

New Delhi's problems have just begun because having woken up late, we have to travel quite some distance and that too against the might of China and that too play a realpolitik game that we have generally been averse to play (not that we haven't played it before, but we never sustained that).

The mere fact that Maldives and Seychelles, which have significant population of Indian ancestry and which have been traditionally Indian outposts for decades, have allowed China to setup naval bases (what are euphemistically referred to as ports, or by the more daring to dual-use ports), shows how much we have to catch up now. Sri Lanka's case is even worse for India. China is breathing down our necks through its investments in the Colombo Port (within which it now has a Chinese territorial enclave) and the new Hambanatota port. Increasingly, Pakistan is enlarging its presence in both Sri Lanka and Maldives. China's intentions may be to make these places another battleground between Pakistan (and Pakistan supported Islamists) and India just as in Afghanistan while it enjoys a free ride.

China's dual use ports extend from Gwadar, iHaven (Maldives) and Seychelles in the west to Colombo, Hambanatota, Sittwe, Kyukapyu, Chittagong in the East. China eventually dreams to have 18 ports available to it in this manner in the IOR.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby vijaykarthik » 04 May 2015 19:52

The only way to counter will be to :

a. make friends of Vietnam, Philippines. Also somewhere in Borneo islands / Indonesia. And have "commercial" ports there.
b. Make Andaman a true blue water navy base. Along with well equipped radar and have A2 & AD capability.
c. Improve Vietnams CG capability.
-- All of these in SCS. If they could influence Japan and have presence in ECS, even better!
d. Improve Indias CG capability
e. Improve overall INS capabilities. its too puny and the current commanders aren't the best, to say the very least. The biggies in the command and control chain haven't really handled corvettes and don't know the skills that are required. A destroyer / aircraft carrier can do only so much and those skills are different from the corvettes etc.
f. Encircle the IOR. Have ports in Maldives, upgrade Andamans, have one in Tanzania / Kenya. Chabahar, preferably Oman.

Talk with NK and get a damned port there if possible.

Will lead to China pissing in their seats.

... And hopefully find a sugar daddy who can fund the toys and exercise.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby vijaykarthik » 04 May 2015 19:53

As an afterthough as I forgot to add - why not Madagascar? Speak with another country and setup a coordinated long range naval base there. As a commercial port. Seems pretty nicely place if it they were very blue water ships.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby ramana » 04 May 2015 20:29

Vijaykarthik, India has started by consolidating the inner periphery. Rajapakse gone out of SL has its own dynamic. Need to get Maladives back on track.
Nepal post Eqk will have its own dynamic and has to be integrated with India.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 15 Jun 2015 17:06

Opinion: Indian Ocean rim needs stronger regionalism – Jamil Maidan Flores
http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/side ... dan-flores
Today, the Indian Ocean seaboard is already in a complex state of flux. A civil war is raging in Yemen, in which neighbouring countries are involved. The military implications of the economic rise of India and China are already playing out in the Indian Ocean, with China building a “string of pearls” and India matching it pearl by pearl, port by port.

The situation calls for a hefty dose of regionalism. In fact, it calls for a regional architecture, the kind that Asean and partners are attempting to build on the Pacific Ocean side. Okay, the Indian Ocean Rim Association (Iora) is already there but it has a narrow project-oriented agenda and doesn’t have the vision and mission of a regional architecture builder.

Still Iora is the Indian Ocean region’s best hope for a body that could manage potential conflict and also devise a strategic approach to the region’s politico-security, economic and socio-cultural aspirations. It won’t be easy for IORA to become such a body. Its 20 members are extremely diversified in terms of size and stages of political, economic and social development. But the attempt must be made. The alternative is to let events in the Indian Ocean hurtle forward unmanaged, with probably disastrous results.

On this Indonesia, which will lead Iora starting later this year, and Australia, the current chair, as well as South Africa and India and even Iran will have much to say. China and the US, as Iora dialogue partners, should be supportive should Iora go into architecture building. Care should also be taken that the smaller members aren’t made to feel they’re being dictated upon.
- See more at: http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/side ... UTXK0.dpuf

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby SSridhar » 15 Jun 2015 17:52

vijaykarthik wrote:As an afterthough as I forgot to add - why not Madagascar? Speak with another country and setup a coordinated long range naval base there. As a commercial port. Seems pretty nicely place if it they were very blue water ships.

vijay, a leaked Chinese Official report talks of 18 foreign PLAN bases and one of them is in Madagascar.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby A_Gupta » 29 Jun 2015 19:56

http://www.business-standard.com/articl ... 238_1.html
"India, Mauritius to revisit tax treaty today"

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby Vipul » 02 Jul 2015 02:36

India to develop two islands in Indian Ocean.

In a major boost for India in the Indian Ocean, the government has bagged ''infrastructure development rights'' for two islands in the region - Agalega from Mauritius and Assumption from Seychelles - during PM Narendra Modi's ocean outreach comprising visits to Mauritius, Seychelles and Sri Lanka.

New Delhi marked its Indian Ocean presence with Modi offering to set up joint working groups with the two blue economies in the region to harness potential for economic cooperation. The understanding to allow India to develop these islands is of huge strategic significance for India which is widely seen as having lost out to China in having a purposeful engagement with the littoral states despite its own central location.

The Modi government has sought to address the issue by acknowledging the primacy of Indian Ocean for India's security and for maintaining peace and stability in the region. Official sources said that the development rights for the two islands had been discussed for months before these were successfully concluded during Modi's visit in a sign that ''Indian Ocean was going to be India's Ocean''.

''Our agreement today on the development of infrastructure in the Assumption Island (Seychelles) gives a strong boost to this partnership,'' said Modi in a media statement, adding that the ocean economy was indispensable to meeting India's future challenges. Modi also launched a Coastal Surveillance Radar Project

India signed an MoU with Mauritius for setting up and upgrading infrastructure for improving sea and air connectivity at the outer island of Mauritius ''which will go a long way in ameliorating the condition of the inhabitants of this remote Island". Foreign ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said these facilities are also expected to enhance the capabilities of the Mauritian defence forces in safeguarding their interests in the island.

Until recently India seemed ill-equipped to meet the challenge from China which aggressively sought to expand its presence in the Indian Ocean by undertaking mega infrastructure projects in several littoral countries. Its maritime silk road proposal was embraced by many of these countries including Sri Lanka which Modi will be visiting on Friday. China's decision to send submarines in Indian Ocean right up to the Gulf of Aden in the recent past has added another dimension to the problem for India. While the new government in Sri Lanka is expected to address India's security concerns which it repeatedly and unsuccessfully raised with the previous government of Mahinda Rajapaksa, the situation in Maldives is still not to New Delhi's liking as pro India former President Mohamed Nasheed remains under detention.

India signed another MoU with Mauritius which will provide an extensive framework for cooperation in the field of ocean economy. It provides for mutually beneficial cooperation for exploration and capacity development in the field of marine resources, fisheries, green tourism, research and development of ocean technology, exchange of experts and other related activities.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby Cosmo_R » 02 Jul 2015 02:38

SSridhar wrote:
vijaykarthik wrote:As an afterthough as I forgot to add - why not Madagascar? Speak with another country and setup a coordinated long range naval base there. As a commercial port. Seems pretty nicely place if it they were very blue water ships.

vijay, a leaked Chinese Official report talks of 18 foreign PLAN bases and one of them is in Madagascar.


The Malagasy are fine with India. They are desperately short of funds (as always).

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby SSridhar » 02 Jul 2015 18:26

India finds itself in a bind on Maldives - Suhasini Haidar, The Hindu
For the past few months, India’s relations with the Maldives have been under considerable strain over the Maldivian government’s actions against former President Mohamed Nasheed.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi cancelled his visit to the island neighbour in March 2015 at the last minute. And in June, he extended Ramzan greetings to leaders of all Muslim countries in the SAARC region, but notably ignored Maldivian President Abdulla Yameen.

Even so, with the possibility of a U.N. Human Rights Council (UNHRC) Presidential statement censuring the Maldives, India is caught in a familiar bind, between its own disapproval of the Maldivian government’s undemocratic moves and its resistance to action against a sovereign neighbour — much like it was some years ago over the situation in Sri Lanka.

Court strictures


The latest stand-off has been sparked by U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein’s statement against the Maldives Supreme Court for passing strictures and threatening imprisonment of members of the Maldives Human Rights Commission for submitting a report to the UNHRC.

“Imposing such extraordinary and broad restrictions on the Human Rights Commission, including on their engagement with international organisations, is completely unacceptable,” Mr. Al Hussein said. “We have long been concerned about the deeply flawed role of the judiciary in the Maldives, including in the case against former President Nasheed.”

UNHRC President Joachim Rücker also raised the matter at the council’s meeting on June 26, leading to speculation that the next step would be a presidential statement at the end of the current session on July 3. In a letter to Delhi-based Asian Human Rights Centre Director Suhas Chakma on the issue, Mr. Rücker wrote that he “will continue to closely follow this case, continue the dialogue with the government of the Maldives, as Member State of the U.N. Human Rights Council, and stand ready to take appropriate actions within his mandate”.

Speaking to The Hindu , Mr. Chakma said the statement was “unprecedented” and showed how “the U.N. body is seized of events in the Maldives,” adding that a presidential statement would lead to a resolution on the Maldives during the UNHRC’s September session, much like Sri Lanka faces.

In response to a query by The Hindu , the Maldives High Commission said that such “statements made from afar at a time when the Maldives is strengthening the foundations of its democracy would be counterproductive.” It explained that the Maldives government could neither interfere with its Supreme Court, nor would it allow any “restrictions on the human rights commission.”

Diplomatic overdrive

Nervous about the developments, the Maldivian government has been in diplomatic overdrive, with President Yameen visiting China and Germany in June, while Foreign Minister Dunya Maumoon spoke with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to apprise them of the latest government moves regarding Mr. Nasheed, who has been convicted on “terror charges,” but has now been moved to house arrest pending his clemency appeal, as well as 18 “new human rights legislations” passed by the government.

On June 25, the government also allowed human rights group Amnesty International to visit Mr. Nasheed in incarceration. In a statement on June 26, Ms. Maumoon said Ms. Swaraj had “welcomed the positive developments in the Maldives”.

While the MEA made no official comment on the conversation, the government does not seem convinced yet that the Maldives government is making moves in the desired direction. In a break from its normal stand of not commenting on internal matters, India had criticised the trial against Mr. Nasheed, as well as an alleged assault on him by police forces outside court on February 23. However, sources concede that if there is international action against the Maldives, India will have to rethink its stand. Maldives is, after all, a neighbour in the Indian Ocean region, with close ties despite the recent strain. Indian officials also closely watched President Yameen’s visit to Pakistan in May, and don’t want to concede any more ground either to Islamabad or to Beijing.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby Tuvaluan » 02 Jul 2015 21:01

However, sources concede that if there is international action against the Maldives, India will have to rethink its stand. Maldives is, after all, a neighbour in the Indian Ocean region, with close ties despite the recent strain. Indian officials also closely watched President Yameen’s visit to Pakistan in May, and don’t want to concede any more ground either to Islamabad or to Beijing.


Why would china allow any "international" UN mandated action against maldives when it refuses to do so for China -- India is on its own, and it needs to take down this thug Abdullah Yameen with prejudice. It is a certainty that he and the Maldives military (that backs him and which is responsible for the coup) will cooperate with both Pakistan and China against Indian interests.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby schinnas » 22 Jul 2015 21:37

Tuvaluan:
In hindsight it was a miss on India's part to not act decisively in Maldieves. I would consider this as the #1 foreign policy fail of our administration (even worse than losing the Afghanistan end game, where the odds were stacked against it). All this talk about sovereignty is bull. No major power listens to it when it concerns their own security or strategic concerns.

Maldives is enacting a constitutional amendment to sell sovereign islands to other countries and China is the customer in waiting. The amendment was kept secret till the last minute from international community.
http://www.business-standard.com/articl ... 415_1.html

The current anti-India president Abdulla Yameen is removing all his political opponents that stand in the way of him literally selling his country to China.
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/worl ... 177288.cms

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby RajeshA » 22 Jul 2015 21:45

Best thing to do right now, is to create a security crisis in the country, say using LTTE remnants or some other mercenary group, intercede militarily and then try to find a solution by calling for new elections! All a question of money!

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby schinnas » 22 Jul 2015 22:00

yes... India has in the past acted swiftly to quell attempted coups but only at the request of the concerned countries' administration. While the current Maldievian President is unlikely to call for our help, if the terrorists were to depose the president, the Maldivian ambassador to India can request our help to intervene.

We just cannot allow sovereign Chinese islands come up in our backyard. Cheen will very likely immediately convert any island it buys in such close proximity to us into a missile base and PLAN port / submarine docking station.
Last edited by schinnas on 22 Jul 2015 22:05, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby vijaykarthik » 22 Jul 2015 22:03

Finally, some backbone.

http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/india-ja ... ean-784160

Sometime, they should consider including Australia too.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby schinnas » 22 Jul 2015 22:12

Terms of the Maldive plan to have other countries own / lease their land.

http://www.business-standard.com/articl ... 421_1.html

The Maldives has allowed foreign investors with a minimum of $1 billion to lease land in the Indian Ocean nation on a freehold basis, in a development that would be watched closely by India, especially with China having a major presence there.

On Tuesday, the Maldives parliament passed a bill on amending the Constitution, allowing anyone to lease land in the Maldives on a freehold basis.

Of the 84 members present, 70 members voted in favour of the bill, with 14 against and no abstentions.

The bill brought out by government MP Ahmed Nihan Hussain Manik states that any investor investing a minimum of $1 billion can freehold the land if the project area is 70 percent reclaimed for the project.

Additionally, an amendment to article 251 (b) also states that the maximum period the land can be given is 99 years.

The land allocated to freehold under the amendments is 10 percent of the total land area of Maldives, said raajjve.mv news site.

China already has a major presence in the Maldives, including bagging the over $500 million Male international airport that was taken away from India's GMR group in 2013, causing tension in ties.

Maldives has also joined China's Maritime Silk Road project, a brainchild of Chinese President Xi Jinping which is viewed as a means to consolidate Beijing's influence in the Indian Ocean region.

China is also involved in and funding many infrastructure projects in the Maldives.

These include upgrading Maldives' international airport, a cross-sea bridge linking capital Male with the nearby Hulhule island and the establishment of a special economic zone in the north, which are all closely related to the construction of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road.

The country's longest high quality road will also be constructed by Chinese firms.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby schinnas » 22 Jul 2015 22:17

Maldives has a total land area of 300 sq kms. If 10% of the land can be leased out, we are looking at 30 sq. km of land. The stipulation for the freehold arrangement is that 70% of land should be reclaimed. So that works out to a max of 100 sq kms of land (30 sq kms leased and 70 reclaimed).

Even if Cheen gets only one tenth of it, 10 sq km island leased for 99 years would provide it with a highly strategic advantage to build submarine docking stations, small airbase and a PLAN port big enough to dock aircraft carriers.

Solving this should be the #1 strategic priority for Doval & team right now. Our window of opportunity is small. Once the island is leased, our options are limited.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby vijaykarthik » 23 Jul 2015 07:10

^^ MM, if Maldives doesn't work out and fail, consider the dweeeps. We have about a laksha dweepa. China taught the world nice lessons about how shoals / rocks and reefs can be made into islands and 5* cities. Dredge and carve out islands and keep a nice base there. A quick look at the map tells me that these are even closer to the Indian mainland and will be more effective too. One good place on the dweeps and improve infra on the Andamans side and we should be reasonably good.

We will need about 2-3 on the African edge / Arabian peninsula too though.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby arshyam » 23 Jul 2015 10:07

Schinnas saar is right, we need to act, and act fast. It's not about having our base in Lakshadweep, but preventing China from coming anywhere close to our mainland. Maldives is too close. Time to revisit what the Cholas did a thousand years ago (they sent a flotilla to take islands - wonder what were the islanders up to back then to invite the wrath :))

In any case, the Navy is building base in Lakshadweep, called INS Dweeparakshak. The name says it all.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby vijaykarthik » 23 Jul 2015 10:23

^ I agree. I never said don't work towards it. I just mentioned over and above the best laid plans, if it fails [as it sometimes does], have a back up plan. The INS and IA and IAF have not been having back up plans as a fall back option for sometime now. [At least not one that is clearly visible]

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby uddu » 24 Jul 2015 17:08

Either buy the Islands or do a blockade to prevent a la cuban missile crisis by the Chinese on India.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby schinnas » 24 Jul 2015 18:31

@Uddu - neither is a possible option. There are several islands and we cannot pay $1B to buy all of them to deny it to Cheen. All Cheen needs is one island. Naval blockade is impractical given our current inability to enforce a blockade. For example, if a Cheen ship were to ignore the blockade and associated warnings, would we really fire on it? Even if we can power project that way in the future, it would not be accepted by the international community as there is no proof that Cheen will put nuke missiles there.

The only game is to encourage regime change and make a constitutional amendment to make any such sale impossible.

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Re: India - The Indian Ocean Civilization & IOR

Postby Prem » 25 Jul 2015 01:41



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