Terror tokenism; Sheikh Hasina faces unrest; Boosting medical education

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Opinion Watch 

Terror tokenism

United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is not just toothless, but a decorative leftover from the last century. Worse, the top international body gives veto power to China, which patronises terrorism and rogue nations, including North Korea and Pakistan. Yet, democracy inherently instills attributes to keep arguing for sanity, and that is what India’s Foreign Minister S Jaishankar did when he urged upon the nations for united action against terrorism.

The Hindu in its Editorial turned focus on Jaishankar’s articulation of four roadblocks against counterterrorism – terror financing, opaque multilateralism, doubles-speak of nations, and politicization. The Chennai-based daily faulted the US and the UK for sanctifying the Taliban in their haste to exit the graveyard of Afghanistan, while turning spotlight on Jaishankar’s scathing condemnation of a P5 country (China) (mis)using veto power to block designation of hardened terrorists. The daily also advised the government not to take the bait of Pakistani Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto’s personal attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and stay focused on the issue of countering terrorism.

Bhutto is a teenager politician, who is belting out the jingles taught to him by the Pakistani Army. His statement in Berlin on Jammu and Kashmir and now at the UNSC are reminders that the Pakistani politicians are rancid pickles. India is now the fourth largest economy, and currently the chair of the G20. New Delhi should remain firm in taking the agenda of counterterrorism to the global centre stage and seek accountability to dry the terror financing.

Sheikh Hasina faces unrest

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina turned around the fortunes of her country after coming to power in 2009. Under her charge, Bangladesh gained political stability, freedom from military dictatorship, while the Jihadi Islamist elements were also tamed to a large extent. But she is now facing a massive unrest, which is led by the Opposition Bangladesh National Party (BNP).

The Pioneer in its Editorial has listed out ‘excesses’ by Hasina during her rule, which included 1,80,000 cases against BNP members, 3000 killings of her opponents. The Noida-based daily has given an account of the massive protests in Bangladesh, which seek an early elections, withdrawal of cases against Khaleda Zia and her son Tarqiue Rahman, while it also stated the allegations that the ruling Awami League had rigged the last two elections. The daily also claimed that even the common people in the country feel stifled.

The editorial looks one-sided, for it ignored the fact that Hasina taken the rein at a time when Islamist Jihadi elements were calling shots in Bangladesh. Hasina has scripted a rare success story in the economy, and the fact that Bangladesh is now a textile giant is to her credit. Unlike Sri Lanka, Bangladesh weathered the pandemic storm and its economy remained strong. The BNP is full of Jihadi elements, who not only sympathise terror organisations but has even taken their support in the past.

Boosting medical education

One of the success stories of the Narendra Modi government at the Centre is in the increase of medical seats in the country, and India is now on course to bridge the gap of doctor per population in another two decades. Yet, it must not be forgotten that public health is incumbent upon the state governments employing the doctors at respectable salaries and not disrespecting them with contractual payouts.

The Times of India in its Editorial has stated that the undergraduate seats in the country increased from 53,000 in 2014 to 96000 in 2022, postgraduate seats from 31,000 in 2014 to 63,000. But India’s nine doctors for one lakh population lags China (22), US (26) and UK (30).

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