Global Security Initiative
(GS-II: Important International Groupings and organizations)
A new Global Security Initiative has been put forward by Chinese President Xi Jinping.
This initiative will look to counter the Indo-Pacific strategy and the Quad – the India, U.S., Australia, Japan grouping.
Aim of this initiative:
As per the Chinese President, Global Security Initiative will stay committed to the vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security.
It would oppose unilateralism, and say no to group politics and bloc confrontation.
This initiative would oppose the wanton use of unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction.
This initiative would build an Asian security model of mutual respect, openness and integration.
It would oppose the destruction of the international order under the banner of so-called rules.
It will also oppose the dragging of the world under the cloud of the new cold war.
This initiative will oppose the use of the Indo-Pacific strategy to divide the region and create a new Cold War, and the use of military alliances to put together an Asian version of NATO.
With growing threats posed by unilateralism, hegemony and power politics, and increasing deficits in peace, security, trust and governance, mankind is facing more and more intractable problems and security threats.
Thus, China held that the Global security initiative is envisaged to uphold the principle of “indivisible security”.
The principle of “indivisible security” means that no country can strengthen its own security at the expense of others.
What are Events Signaling a New Cold War?
China’s aggressive development under the relatively enlightened authoritarianism.
In order to contain rising China’s assertiveness, the US under its ‘pivot to Asia policy’ Has launched a Quad initiative & Indo pacific narrative.
Most recently, the US proposed to expand G7 to G-11 without including China in it.
China’s actions in the South China Sea, first by land reclamation and then constructing artificial islands for extending extra-territorial claim, has seen sharp criticism from the US and its allies.
What are China’s views on the Quad?
There is a general understanding that the Quad would not take on a military dimension against any country. The strategic community in China, nevertheless, had branded it an emerging “Asian NATO”.
Notably, Japanese PM Shinzo Abe’s “Confluence of Two Seas” address to the Indian Parliament gave a fresh impetus to the Quad concept. This recognised the economic rise of India.
Concerns for India:
There could be a warning for New Delhi in these efforts, that others are stitching up formal, institutionalized security cooperation that leave India out.
With two new treaties now in the region—AUKUS being the other—and more potentially on their way, New Delhi needs to consider seriously whether its continuing scepticism of closer security cooperation with others best serves India’s interest.
More problematically, it is another indicator that India has not entirely escaped its traditional aversion to external security partnerships even when the limitations of its domestic capacities are self-evident.
5G service roll-out likely in Aug.-Sept
(GS-III: Developments in Science and Technology (IT & Computers))
Union Minister of Communications, Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw, recently said that the commercial rollout of 5G services could be expected from August-September 2022 onwards.
The government is confident of resolving issues related to high spectrum pricing with the industry.
What is 5G?
5G is the next generation of mobile broadband that will eventually replace, or at least augment 4G LTE connection.
Features and benefits of the 5G technology:
Operate in the millimeter wave spectrum (30-300 GHz) which have the advantage of sending large amounts of data at very high speeds.
Operates in 3 bands, namely low, mid and high frequency spectrum.
Reduced latency will support new applications that leverage the power of 5G, the Internet of Things (IoT), and artificial intelligence.
Increased capacity on 5G networks can minimize the impact of load spikes, like those that take place during sporting events and news events.
Significance of the technology:
India’s National Digital Communications Policy 2018 highlights the importance of 5G when it states that the convergence of a cluster of revolutionary technologies including 5G, the cloud, Internet of Things (IoT) and data analytics, along with a growing start-up community, promise to accelerate and deepen its digital engagement, opening up a new horizon of opportunities.
Challenges for 5G Roll-out in India:
Procedural Delays: India’s telecom sector is greatly affected by the procedural delays and their multiple issues.
Affordability of Spectrum: Many countries around the world may already roll out 5G connectivity to its users but, in India, the 5G spectrum is yet to be allocated.
Last-mile Connectivity: Catering to last-mile broadband connectivity in Tier-II, Tier-III cities and rural homes are challenging since India lacks optical fiber infrastructure and Greenfield deployment which has immensely affected last-mile connectivity.
Affordable 5G Devices: On the consumer front, affordable 5G devices are yet to take their place in the market.
National Curriculum Framework (NCF)
(GS-II: Developments in education)
The ‘Mandate Document: Guidelines for the Development of the NCF was recently released.
The National Education Policy (NEP), 2020 recommends the development of National Curriculum Frameworks (NCF) in four areas- School Education, Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE), Teacher Education and Adult Education.
About the NCF:
The NCF includes the National Curriculum Framework for School Education (NCFSE), the National Curriculum Framework for Early Childhood Care & Education (NCFECCE), the National Curriculum Framework for Teacher Education (NCFTE), and the National Curriculum Framework for Adult Education (NCFAE).
The mandate document will bring about a paradigm shift with focus on holistic development of children, emphasis on skilling, vital role of teachers, learning in mother tongue, cultural rootedness. It is also a step towards decolonisation of the Indian education system.
Highlights of the National Education policy:
Public spending on education by states, Centre to be raised to 6% of the GDP.
Ministry of Human Resource Development to be renamed Minister of Education.
Digital Education- related:
An autonomous body, the national educational technology forum, will be created for the exchange of ideas on use of technology to enhance learning, assessment, planning and administration.
Separate technology unit to develop digital education resources. The new unit will coordinate digital infrastructure, content and capacity building.
Teacher Education- related:
By 2030, the minimum degree qualification for teaching will be a four year integrated B.Ed. degree.
Teachers will also be given training in online educational methods relevant to the Indian situation in order to help bridge the digital divide.
School Education- related:
Universalise the pre-primary education (age range of 3-6 years) by 2025.
Universalization of Education from pre-school to secondary level with 100 % GER in school education by 2030.
A new school curriculum with coding and vocational studies from class 6 will be introduced.
A child’s mother tongue will be used as the medium of instruction till class 5.
A new curricular framework is to be introduced, including the preschool and Anganwadi years.
A National Mission on Foundational Literacy and Numeracy will ensure basic skills at the class 3 level by 2025.
Board exams to be easier, redesigned. Exams will test core competencies rather than memorising facts, with all students allowed to take the exam twice.
School governance is set to change, with a new accreditation framework and an independent authority to regulate both public and private schools.
Higher Education- related:
Four year undergraduate degrees with multiple entry and exit options will be introduced.
The M.Phil degree will be abolished.
New umbrella regulator for all higher education except medical, legal courses.
An Academic Bank of Credit will be set up to make it easier to transfer between institutions.
College affiliation system to be phased out in 15 years, so that every college develops into either an autonomous degree-granting institution, or a constituent college of a university.
It also aims to double the Gross Enrolment Ratio in higher education, including vocational education, from 26.3% in 2018 to 50% by 2035, with an additional 3.5 crore new seats.
Traditional knowledge- related:
Indian knowledge systems, including tribal and indigenous knowledge, will be incorporated into the curriculum in an accurate and scientific manner.
Regions such as aspirational districts, which have large number of students facing economic, social or caste barriers will be designated as ‘Special Educational Zones’.
The Centre will also set up a Gender Inclusion Fund to build the country’s capacity to provide equitable quality education to all girls and transgender students.
Meritorious students belonging to SC, ST, OBC and other socially and economically disadvantaged groups will be given incentives.
New Curricular and Pedagogical Structure:
The NEP proposes changing the existing 10+2 Curricular and Pedagogical Structure with 5+3+3+4 design covering the children in the age group 3-18 years. Under this —
Five years of the Foundational Stage: 3 years of pre-primary school and Grades 1, 2;
Three years of the Preparatory (or Latter Primary) Stage: Grades 3, 4, 5;
Three years of the Middle (or Upper Primary) Stage: Grades 6, 7, 8;
Four years of the High (or Secondary) Stage: Grades 9, 10, 11, 12.
Since education is a concurrent subject most states have their own school boards. Therefore, state governments would have to be brought on board for actual implementation of this decision.