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Editorial Analysis

Editorial – 1

Title of the editorial: The forgotten fact of China-Occupied Kashmir

Written by: Sujan R. Chinoy – He is a former Ambassadorand China expert, is currently the DirectorGeneral of the Manohar Parrikar Institutefor Defence Studies and Analyses, NewDelhi

Topic in syllabus: Security challenges and their management in border areas (GS-3)

Analysis about: This editorial talks about the history of Chinese occupation in Kashmir


  • Important locations to understand the editorial:
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  • What is the great game?
    • Britain was fearful of Russia invading India to add to the vast empire that Russia was building in Asia.
    • As a result, there was a deep atmosphere of distrust and the talk of war between the two empires. Britain made it a high priority to protect all the approaches to India, and the “great game” is primarily how the British did this.


  • Following the abrogation of article 370 & and reorganisation of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) a China Pakistan tandem has emerged to internationalise the issue, including in the UN Security Council.
  • China’s support for Pakistan is motivated by a desire to perpetuate its own territorial grab in the trans­Karakoram Shaksgam Tract of Kashmir.

Current status of illegal occupation of China & its background:

  • China treats the J&K issue as a “bilateral dispute left over from history” to be resolved between India
    and Pakistan. (but China is changing its stance)
  • Yet, China questions the establishment of the Union Territory of Ladakh and to term it a ‘unilateral’ attempt to change “the status quo in the Kashmir region”.
  • China has no locus standi to comment on India’s internal affairs since the erstwhile princely State of J&K acceded to India through the Instrument of Accession on October 26, 1947.
  • The Shaksgam valley in the trans-­Karakoram tract, part of PoK, was handed over on a platter by a Pakistan to China through an illegal border agreement on March 2, 1963.
  • China occupies 5,180 square kilometres in the Shaksgam Valley in addition to approximately 38,000
    square kilometres in Aksai Chin.
  • China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) which runs through parts of Indian territory under their respective occupation.

The history of Chinese occupation in the region:

  • Historically, China played an insidious role in changing the frontiers of Jammu and Kashmir
    through fictitious claims and unscrupulous alliances with local chieftains.
  • China exploited the ‘Great Game’ between British India and Russia in the late 19th century. It pitched territorial claims far beyond the traditional frontiers of Xinjiang.
  • It gradually crept into areas in the the Karakorams, well south of its frontier along the Kun Lun mountains.
  • While the British and the Russians were busy creating buffer zones along the frontiers of Xinjiang and Tibet, China was systematically stepping into the void. By the 1890s, China had started asserting its presence in the valleys between the Kun Lun and the main Karakoram range.
  • After the Mir’s (Mir of Hunza) defeat in 1869 at the hands of the joint forces of the Maharaja and the British, the Chinese tried to co­-opt him in their scheme while giving him refuge.
  • The Chinese had started the practice of exchanging annual presents with the Mir of Hunza in recognition of his authority over the unruly nomadic tribes that inhabited these valleys.
  • By 1891, the Chinese had quietly moved south of the Kun Lun range to consolidate their presence at
    Shahidullah, which earlier marked the furthest outpost of the princely state of J&K. They then moved
    further south to Suget, and thereafter, showed up at the Karakoram pass.

How Pakistan exploited the region in addition to China?

  • The border was blatantly compromised by Pakistan in its so called agreement with China on
    March 2, 1963.
  • By giving in to China’s expansionist designs and spurious claims to a boundary along the Karakoram range, Pakistan compromised India’s traditional frontier along the Kun Lun range to the north­west of the Karakoram Pass.
  • It also enabled China to extrapolate a claim line eastwards along the Karakoram range in Ladakh.
  • This allowed China to claim the whole of Aksai Chin in which it had no historical presence. After the Partition of the Indian subcontinent, from 1953, Chinese troops actively started transgressing the frontier in eastern Hunza.

How China is claiming itself a party in the border dispute?

  • The provisional nature of the territorial settlement between China and Pakistan is evident in Article 6
    of the 1963 agreement, which clearly states that “the two Parties agreed that after the settlement of the Kashmir dispute between Pakistan and India, the sovereign authority concerned will reopen negotiations with the Government of the People’s Republic of China, on the boundary as described in Article Two of the present Agreement, so as to sign a formal Boundary Treaty to replace the present agreement”.
  • In effect, this agreement has established China as a party to the dispute. It has a vested interest in legitimising its illegitimate gains in the trans-Karakoram tract.

Editorial – 2

Title of the editorial: On gender equity, press reset

Written by: Ashwini Deshpande – She is professor of economics and the founding director of Centre for Economic Data and Analysis (CEDA) at Ashoka University.

Topic in syllabus: Indian society, role of women & related issues (GS-1)

Analysis about: This editorial talks about the how pandemic affect the women labour force participation & normalisation of work from home is unlikely to raise it.


  • A recent report from LinkedIn suggested that Indian women increased their participation in paid work between April and July because the new normal of “work from home” (WFH) allowed them to combine their domestic and employment responsibilities.
  • This sounded hopeful because women’s (in)ability to work outside the home is critically intertwined with their predominant responsibility for domestic chores and unpaid care work.

What is the relation between women labour force participation & unpaid work done by them?

  • Historically, women’s LFP has increased when the time cost of domestic/unpaid care work is reduced, or is shared more equally with men, or made more compatible with market work.

What is the situation during pandemic?

  • International trends, shows that women dropping out of the workforce in large numbers as the burden of childcare has disproportionately fallen on them during the prolonged school closures and pressures of home schooling.
  • The New York Times sums up the harsh dilemma for women: “In the Covid-19 Economy, You Can Have a Kid or a Job. You Can’t Have Both”.
  • According to Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) data male employment in August is 98 per cent, and female employment is 91 per cent, of the respective pre-pandemic average.
  • It is clear that the large gender gaps in paid work have not declined.

What is the condition gender parity in domestic work?

  • Everywhere in the world, women spend much more time than men on domestic chores and care work, including childcare.
  • But in India Women spend between five to 10 times more time on housework compared to men.
  • Despite the presence of two strong preconditions for women’s participation in paid work — falling fertility and rapidly rising female education levels — India’s female LFP has not only been persistently low, but has registered a decline over the last 15 years.

Probable reasons behind women’s less participation in paid work in India:

  • a willing dropping out (that is, women unwilling to work despite opportunities)
  • a combination of lack of suitable jobs, fractured nature of work especially in rural areas and inaccurate measurement of their work [This is the most probable reason]

What are the issues in India?

  • Several surveys have documented an unmet demand for paid work by women.
  • Women want to work but are hampered by a combination of factors.
  • One, they need work commensurate with their rising educational qualifications;
  • two, they need conducive and enabling conditions (transportation, toilets, regularity), and three, they have to balance the pressures of domestic chores.

Conclusion: As the pandemic forces our economy to hit the “reset” button, paying attention to job creation with a gender equity lens is essential for India to realise its tremendous gender dividend.

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