Editorial analysis: G7’s growing Russian nightmare; Bangladesh’s Padma leap of faith; Judiciary & anti-defection law
In ‘Editorial analysis’, The Raisina Hills critically reviews comments of India’s top five English newspapers – The Indian Express (IE), The Economic Times (ET), The Hindu (TH), The Times of India (ToI) and Deccan Herald (DH).
The G7 Summit at Bavaria in Germany ended in the dark and heavy shadow of the unabated Russian war in Ukraine. The NATO Summit would soon be held, while it’s evident that the US-led western sanctions against Moscow failed to push back Russia from Ukraine.
IE, ET and ToI have come out with Edits on the G7 Summit, which was also attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
IE builds its commentary on the submission of the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy made through video address that the war would gain momentum in Winter, sifting the stances of the US and arguing that the global economic cost of the Russian actions in Ukraine are already too heavy.
ToI examines in its Edit the practicality of the proposed plan of the US-led western block to find a way around with the supply of Russian oil and gas, with plan to cap their prices by working with the insurers, who largely operate from London.
It notes that the US-led sanctions against Russia have sent the crude oil prices soaring, hurting the global economy with a runaway inflation.
Europe already is consuming the Russian oil and gas even while the continent vows to replace 90 per cent of the imports.
ToI suggests that the better idea would be to work on the French proposal to get countries like Venezuela and Iran pump more oil. But both the countries have been turned into outcast because of the US’ political orientations and its geopolitics compulsions.
ET takes an economic angle of the G7 Summit, arguing the response of the block to the consequences of the pandemic in countries pushed to debt would shape future geopolitics.
Indeed, G7 Summit committed a USD 600 billion fund for ‘Global Infrastructure and Investment’, which can help developing countries, including India, access financial instruments to fund their growth.
The Maharashtra political soap opera has reached the final stage, and the state Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari has asked the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government to prove majority on the floor of the Assembly on Thursday.
TH in its Edit has argued “by its order granting time until July 12 to dissident Shiv Sena legislators in the Maharashtra Assembly to reply to the Deputy Speaker’s notice under the anti-defection law, the Supreme Court has effectively made it possible for them to actualize their objective without the threat of disqualification for now”.
Indeed, the Constitution Bench in 1992 Kilhoto Hollohan vs Zachillhu case had upheld the validity of the ant-defection law. But TH reminded that the “Speaker’s decision was subject to judicial review, albeit on limited grounds”.
But much waters have flown in the Ganges since the enactment of the anti-defection law, and the recent episodes of change of governments in Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, and Arunachal Pradesh convincingly demonstrate that anti-defection law is now toothless.
Bangladesh is an example of hope, for ways the country is progressing in economic fronts. DH’s Edit on Padma bridge traces Dhaka’s resolve to stand on its feet, funding the USD 3.6 billion bridge from own sources after the World Bank withdrew the support. Padma Bridge, 6.15 km long, will bring Kolkata much closer to Dhaka, giving boost to people to people connect between two countries with same cultural heritage.
Indeed, Bangladesh’s economic transformation under the helm of Sheikh Hasina is praiseworthy, for its per capita income was half of India 15 years ago but now has raced ahead, DH rightly points out, adding that Dhaka’s exports have risen by 20 times in the last two decades.
Yet, DH doesn’t mention that Bangladesh is the beneficiary of the western countries sourcing the finished textile goods from the country while ignoring the gross exploitation of the labour forces. Dhaka should demonstrate that it’s not merely the beneficiary of cheap labour by skilling up with technology adoption along with a robust economic linkages with India.