Answer Writing Practice for UPSC IAS & UPPSC Mains Exam: Paper - III (General Studies – II) - 09 October 2019

Answer Writing Practice for UPSC IAS Mains Exam


Answer Writing Practice for UPSC IAS & UPPSC Mains Exam


UPSC Syllabus:

  • Paper-III: General Studies -II (Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations)

Q. Discuss India’s efforts towards reviving Indo-Sri Lankan ties in the wake of the imposing Lotus Tower in Colombo furthering Sri Lanka- China ties. (250 words)

Model Answer:

  • Why in News?
  • Introduction
  • Strain in India-Sri Lanka relations
  • Developments in China-Sri Lanka relations
  • India’s contribution to improve ties with Sri Lanka
  • Conclusion

Why in News?

The establishment of Lotus Tower in Colombo which is a multi-functional telecommunication is considered to be the latest symbol of good ties between Sri Lanka-China.  

Introduction:

Sri Lanka is an island country located in the located in the Indian Ocean. The island is geographically separated from the Indian subcontinent by the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait.     Both countries have a legacy of intellectual, cultural, religious and linguistic interaction.

Strain in India-Sri Lanka relations:

  • The bilateral relations between India and Sri Lanka deteriorated in 1980’s with a rising of the Tamil militant separatism in Sri Lanka.
  • An accord had been signed between India and Sri Lanka in 1987 to improve ties between the two countries.
  • It proposed a political solution to the Sri Lanka’s conflict by establishing a provincial council system and devolution of power for nine provinces in Sri Lanka. (This is popularly known as The Thirteenth Amendment (13A) to the Constitution of Sri Lanka)
  • India also deployed peace keeping forces in Sri Lanka.
  • In 2009, the last areas controlled by the Tamil Tiger Rebels were seized and this ended the 25 years of violence.
  • Indo-Sri Lanka relationship further deteriorated when India voted against Sri Lanka in 2009, 2012 and 2013 at the US-sponsored UNHRC resolution to investigate alleged human rights violations by the state against the Tamil rebels.

Developments in China-Sri Lanka relations:

  • China is offering Sri Lanka huge financial assistance for new infrastructure projects, which is not good for India’s strategic depth in Indian Ocean Region.
  • Sri Lanka also handed over the strategic port of Hambantota, which is expected to play a key role in China’s Belt and Road Initiative.
  • China has also supported Sri Lanka with man power by sending an army of workers.
  • China is also engaged in negotiations to invest $30-40 million in Sri Lanka’s plantation industry. This amount is reportedly just a fraction of investment planned in this sector.

India’s contribution to improve ties with Sri Lanka:

Relationship between India and Sri Lanka is in a growing stage.

  • Trade and investment have grown and there is cooperation in the fields of infrastructure development, education, culture and defense.
  • In recent years, significant progress in implementation of developmental assistance projects has further cemented the bonds of friendship between the two countries.
  • India is Sri Lanka’s largest trading partner, while Sri Lanka is India’s second largest trading partner in the South East Asia.
  • Tourism also forms an important link between India and Sri Lanka. India is the largest source of market for Sri Lankan tourism.
  • Buddhism connects India and Sri Lanka on religious lines.
  • Education is another important area of cooperation between India and Sri Lanka. India offers scholarship slots annually to deserving Sri Lankan students.
  • India and Sri Lanka signed FTA in 1998, which facilitated increased trade relations between the two countries.
  • The proposed Economic and Technological Cooperation Agreement between India and Sri Lanka would facilitate trade in services, investments and technological cooperation. With ETCA signed, Indian investments will flow into Sri Lanka to make the island’s production facilities part of the Indian and international value chain.
  • India is also planning to build Trincomalee Port to counterweight Chinese developments at Hambantota Port.

Conclusion:

India needs to improve its diplomatic initiatives to attract and retain its neighbours. India should move fast in this regard as the recent swift actions by China to provide huge sums of money to improve Sri Lankan infrastructure may pose a threat to India in the near future.

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