23rd March 2024 : Daily Current Affairs : Micro Notes (Revision Notes) (Arora IAS)

Mains Exam 

Insurgency in Balochistan

Syllabus: GS-2 : International Relations


  • Pakistani security forces repelled a militant attack in Balochistan province.

About Balochistan

  • Largest and least populated Pakistani province.
  • Rich in natural resources, including oil, making it strategically important.
  • History of bloody insurgencies and Baloch nationalist movements since 1948.

Background of the Insurgency

  • Partition of British India in 1947:
    • Balochistan region divided into four princely states.
    • These states offered three options: join India, Pakistan, or remain independent.
    • Khan of Kalat (largest state) initially chose independence.
  • Treaty signed between Kalat and Muslim League in 1947:
    • Recognized Kalat as an independent state.
    • Pakistan later disregarded the treaty.
  • Pakistan Army forced annexation of Kalat in 1948.

Insurgency and Discontent

  • Forceful integration of Kalat into Pakistan led to:
    • Discontent and resistance among Baloch people.
    • View of annexation as a betrayal of autonomy and cultural identity.
  • Multiple insurgencies for independence suppressed by Pakistan.
  • Balochistan:
    • Most neglected and poverty-stricken province despite its size and resources.
    • Contributes only 4% to Pakistan’s economy.

India’s Stand on Balochistan

  • Complex and influenced by various factors:
    • Geopolitics
    • Regional stability
    • Relationship with Pakistan
  • India-Pakistan conflict over Kashmir prevents overt Indian involvement.
  • Pakistan accuses India of supporting Baloch separatists (denied by India).
  • India:
    • Supports right to self-determination for Baloch people.
    • Maintains non-interference in Pakistan’s internal affairs.
  • India’s stance balances concern for human rights with maintaining diplomatic ties with Pakistan.


Prime Minister Modi’s Visit to Bhutan

Syllabus: GS-2 : International Relations


  • PM Modi visited Bhutan in a two-day visit as part of India’s Neighbourhood First Policy.

Key Highlights

  • India and Bhutan signed seven agreements on energy, food safety, sports, research, and space collaboration.
  • PM Modi received the Order of Druk Gyalpo, Bhutan’s highest honor.
  • India doubled its assistance to Bhutan from ₹5,000 crore (2019-2024) to ₹10,000 crore (till 2029).

India-Bhutan Relations

  • Geographical Connection: Bhutan shares a 699 km border with four Indian states, acting as a buffer between India and China.
  • Diplomatic Relations: Established in 1968, with the Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation (1949) as the cornerstone.
  • Trade Relations: India is Bhutan’s top trading partner with trade in goods increasing from US$484 million to US$1.606 billion in the last decade.
  • Financial Assistance: India contributes 73% of Bhutan’s total external grant component for the 12th Five Year Plan (₹5000 Cr).

Development Projects

  • Hydroelectric Projects (HEPs):
    • Completed: Chukha HEP, Kurichhu HEP, Tala HEP (exporting surplus power to India).
    • Ongoing: 720 MW Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Power Project, 1200 MW Punatsangchhu-1 & 1020 MW Punatsangchhu-2.
  • Supporting Bhutan’s “Gelephu Mindfulness City” project.
  • Planned: 58-km rail link between Gelephu (Bhutan) and Kokrajhar (Assam, India).

The China Factor

  • China’s growing presence in Bhutan is a concern for India.
  • Bhutan’s border negotiations with China worry India.
  • Potential Doklam swap: China might seek Doklam in exchange for disputed territories in northern Bhutan.
  • Doklam’s strategic importance: The Doklam plateau borders the Siliguri Corridor, connecting India’s mainland to the Northeast.
  • Chinese territorial claims:
    • 2020 claim on Bhutan’s Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary bordering Arunachal Pradesh.
    • Alleged construction of villages inside Bhutan.
  • India views China’s claims as pressure tactics to gain control of Doklam.

Way Ahead

  • India’s engagement strengthens its strategic position in the Himalayas amidst border tensions with China.
  • Development assistance will boost Bhutan’s economy and economic ties between the two nations.



Prelims Exam

International Organisations

Digital Innovation Board of ITU 

  • Co-chaired by India.
  • Part of ITU’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Alliance for Digital Development.
  • 23 members from Asia, Europe, Africa, North and South America.
  • Focuses on fostering innovation and entrepreneurship for a more inclusive digital future.
  • Provides guidance and advocacy for building critical local enablers and fostering innovation in digital development.

Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO)

  • Intergovernmental organization founded in 2001 with nine members (China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Iran) and three observer states (Afghanistan, Belarus, Mongolia).
  • Aims to enhance regional cooperation to curb terrorism, separatism, and extremism in Central Asia.
  • SCO Startup Forum:
    • Focuses on broadening startup interactions among member states.
    • Provides value to startups through mentoring and enabling access to investors and corporations.

AUKUS Agreement

  • Trilateral security partnership between Australia, UK, and US for the Indo-Pacific.
  • US and UK to help Australia acquire nuclear-powered submarines.
  • Cooperation on advanced technologies like AI, cyber, and hypersonic weapons.
  • Australia to provide 4.6 billion Australian dollars to British industry for submarine construction.

Science and Technology


  • Sanctioned by Technology Development Board (TDB) for developing new antibiotics against gram-negative bacterial infections.
  • Joint effort between Indian and Spanish companies.

Gram-Negative Bacteria

  • Develop resistance to existing antibiotics.
  • Cause severe hospital-acquired infections like pneumonia, bloodstream infections, and meningitis.


  • ISRO’s achievement in Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV) Technology.
  • Named after the mythological spaceship from Ramayana.
  • Lifted by an Indian Air Force Chinook helicopter and released from 4.5 km altitude.
  • Shielded with heat-resistant materials for atmospheric re-entry.
  • Part of RLV-TD project, a crucial step towards developing a fully reusable launch vehicle for low-cost space access.

Art and Culture


  • One of eight classical dance forms recognized by Sangeet Natak Academy.
  • From Kerala, named after the mythical enchantress Mohini.
  • Performed by women in honor of Lord Vishnu.
  • Characterized by graceful, swaying body movements and emphasis on acting.


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