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SOURCE: Ajai Shukla / Business Standard

Barely a month after the US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, America is making a strategic course correction, partnering two other Anglophone countries – Australia and the UK – in launching a new defence alliance in the Asia-Pacific. 

Appearing together on television on September 15, the three countries’ leaders – Joe Biden, Boris Johnson and Scott Morrison – jointly announced an “enhanced trilateral security partnership” named AUKUS (Australia – UK – US). Signalling that AUKUS meant business, the first announcement by the three leaders was that the UK and US would provide Australia with the classified technology and wherewithal needed to build and operate up to eight nuclear-powered attack submarines (SSNs).

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SOURCE: Navy Recognition

According to information published by BFM TV on September 23, 2021, after the cancellation of the contract between Naval Group and the Australian Department of Defence, India would be interested in those Barracuda-class submarines.

The Barracuda-class (or Suffren-class) is a nuclear attack submarine (SSN), designed by the French shipbuilder Naval Group, formerly known as DCNS and DCN, for the French Navy, intended to replace the Rubis-class submarines. On 22 December 2006, the French government placed a €7.9 billion order for six Barracuda submarines with Naval Group and their nuclear powerplants with Areva-Technicatome. Construction began in 2007 and the first unit will be commissioned in 2019. The Barracuda class nuclear reactor incorporates several improvements over that of the preceding Rubis. Notably, it extends the time between refueling and complex overhauls (RCOHs) from 7 to 10 years, enabling higher at-sea availability.

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SOURCE: VAYU AEROSPACE

Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria flew his last sortie as Chief of Air Staff (CAS) on the morning of 13 September 2021. He was, as he had done many times during his tenure as Chief, flying a frontline fighter solo – in this case a MiG-21 Bison. The type of aircraft had more to do with history than familiarity or leading by example, although the latter is inevitable when any senior commander flies an operational jet, particularly one as controversial as the venerable MiG-21. This choice was about coming full circle – Bhadauria’s flying career in the IAF began with MiG-21s of No. 23 Squadron ‘Panthers’ at Halwara, and so it ended, in a Panthers MiG-21 at the same station.

The Chief flew more or less like any line pilot would – a morning brief covering the flight profile, safety, weather, diversion airfields and so on, followed by a preflight check and climbing into the Bison. He took some time to re-familiarise himself with the cockpit before closing the canopy, starting up and taxiing out along with the CO of No. 23 Squadron.

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SOURCE: IANS

In a shocking revelation, the Advisory Board of the Global Counter Terrorism Council has said that China has built 680 ‘Xiaokang’ (prosperous or thriving villages) along its border with India.

These villages are meant to lure the Indian villagers towards a better Chinese life, and are also supposed to serve as additional eyes and ears for Beijing. “China has built around 680 Xiaokang, which they call as ‘well off’ villages on our borders with them, and Bhutan borders. These villages are inhabited by their people who come and live in and impress the local Indian population how well off they are with the Chinese government.

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SOURCE: IANS

After making amendments to conventional service rules, some two dozen government employees have been dismissed by the Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha in the current year. The latest lot, sacked on Wednesday 22 September under provisions of Article 311(2)(c) of the Constitution of India, comprises one Forest Range Officer, one junior assistant, two government schoolteachers and two constables of the Jammu and Kashmir Police.

Unlike on all previous occasions of the termination of service of the government employees for their alleged anti-national activities, the fraternity of the 5 lakh public servants is calm and quiet. There are no reports of a protest, calls for shutdown, threats to cripple the government system from the trade unions as they did several times in the last 32 years of the militancy. As of now, there are also no reports of anybody having challenged the termination orders in a court of law or a judicial officer having stayed such an order.

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SOURCE: PTI

India and the US have said that they will take concerted action against all terrorist groups, including groups proscribed by the UN as they condemned cross-border terrorism and called for the perpetrators of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks to be brought to justice. A Joint Statement issued after the first bilateral meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Joe Biden at the White House on Friday said that the United States and India stand together in a shared fight against global terrorism.

The two leaders reaffirmed that the United States and India “will take concerted action against all terrorist groups, including groups proscribed by the UNSCR 1267 Sanctions Committee.” They “condemned cross-border terrorism, and called for the perpetrators of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks to be brought to justice. They denounced any use of terrorist proxies and emphasised the importance of denying any logistical, financial or military support to terrorist groups which could be used to launch or plan terror attacks,” the joint statement said. Pakistan-based radical cleric Hafiz Saeed’s Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD) is the front organisation for the Lashkar-e-Taiba which is responsible for carrying out the 2008 Mumbai attack that killed 166 people, including six Americans.

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SOURCE: NEWS18.COM

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the US is being spectated by the entire world, more so by Pakistan. Especially after the recent developments in Afghanistan and other South-Asian events.

One of Pakistan’s most influential English language newspapers, Dawn, used a wire copy to report on the issue. Titled “Biden discusses Indian Bidens with Modi, and asks ‘Are we related?'”, the report spoke the mysterious family connection that US President Joe Biden has to India. “Modi said Biden had mentioned the connection to him previously, so he had hunted for documents that could help fill in the gaps in the family tree,” read the report

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SOURCE: PTI

US President Joe Biden has reiterated America’s support for india’s permanent membership on a reformed United Nations Security Council and its entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group during his first in-person bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the White House. President Biden, in his talks with Prime Minister Modi, applauded India’s strong leadership during its UN Security Council Presidency in August 2021, according to the US-India Joint Leaders’ Statement issued after their meeting in the White House on Friday.

In this context, President Biden also reiterated US support for India’s permanent membership on a reformed UN Security Council and for other countries who are important champions of multilateral cooperation and aspire to permanent seats on the UN Security Council, it said. President Biden’s support provides a big boost to New Delhi’s push for the reform of the powerful UN organ as India has been at the forefront of efforts at the United Nations to push for an urgent long-pending reform of the Security Council, emphasising that it rightly deserves a place at the UN high table as a permanent member.

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SOURCE: PTI

India and the US have called on the Taliban to adhere to its commitments and respect the human rights of all Afghans, including women, children and minority groups, and asked the new rulers in Kabul to make sure that the war-torn country’s territory is never again used to threaten or attack any country or to shelter or train terrorists. In a US-India Joint Leaders’ Statement issued after the first in-person bilateral meeting between US President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the White House on Friday, the two leaders underscored the importance of combating terrorism in Afghanistan.

The two leaders resolved that the Taliban must abide by UNSC Resolution 2593 (2021) which demands that Afghan territory must never again be used to threaten or attack any country or to shelter or train terrorists, or to plan or finance terrorist attacks, and underscored the importance of combating terrorism in Afghanistan, according to the joint statement.

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SOURCE: TIMESNOW

Pakistan on Friday summoned an Indian diplomat and expressed its “concerns” over the recent eviction drive in Assam which turned violent resulting in the death of two persons. In an official statement, Pakistan’s Foreign Office confirmed the Indian diplomat was told that India must investigate the recent “anti-Muslim violence in Assam” and punish the perpetrators,

India should also take measures to stop such incidents from recurring in future, read the statement. The summons was issued barely a couple of days after two people were killed and 20 others were injured when the Assam Police tried to evict the encroachers at Gorkhuti and other villages under Sipahjhar.

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SOURCE: INDIA TODAY

India’s First Secretary Sneha Dubey occupied the top spot in the trends list on Twitter after her fiery speech at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) as she responded to Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s remarks on Kashmir.

“Proud of you,” Twitter users said as netizens flooded the micro-blogging site with clips and pictures of Sneha Dubey. In her speech, Sneha Dubey said India desires normal relations with all its neighbours including Pakistan. She also claimed that Imran Khan was trying to divert the world’s attention from the “sad state of his country where terrorists enjoy a free pass while the lives of ordinary people, especially those belonging to minority communities, are turned upside down”.

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SOURCE: Prasar Bharati

Ministry of Defence has promulgated the framework for enhanced and synergised utilisation of simulators by the three Services and the Indian Coast Guard. The overarching vision is to transform to simulation-based training across all military domains for combatants, leaders, maintainers, administrators, life science experts, procurement and financial agencies and thus achieve cost effective, efficient, safe, fast-paced and smart training.

The framework lays emphasis on indigenous design and development as well as outsourcing of operation and maintenance of simulators to the Indian companies. The framework has goals and objectives like to reduce live equipment utilisation, to ensure capability plans cater for phased induction of simulators, to duly factor requirement of simulators at the planning stage of procurement and to coordinate among various agencies of the government and factor combined requirements of simulators during procurement.

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SOURCE: TIMES NOW

Former J&K chief minister and PDP president Mehbooba Mufti on Friday said the Centre was “disempowering” the people of Jammu and Kashmir by suspecting them of having alleged links with militants.

Her reaction came after six government employees were terminated on charges of alleged anti-national activities. “No end to GOIs farmaans for disempowering people of J&K. Contrary to GOIs tall claims of getting investment to create employment they are deliberately laying off government employees despite knowing that people in J&K rely on government jobs for their livelihood,” Mehbooba tweeted.

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SOURCE: ANI

Pakistan’s role in Afghanistan and its involvement in terrorism were among the issues discussed in the Quad summit and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s bilateral discussions, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said. Responding to a question on Pakistan’s support to terrorism during a press briefing in Washington, Mr Shringla said that Pakistan has really been in many senses instigator of some of the problems India is dealing with in our neighbourhood and beyond.

“Both in bilateral discussions and in Quad summit, there was a clear sense that more careful look, examination and monitoring Pakistan’s role in Afghanistan, Pakistan’s role on the issue of terrorism had to be kept and certainly whether it is Quad or other partners had to keep track to that factor, an important factor that sometimes gets overlooked when you see Pakistan projecting itself as a facilitator whether it has really been in many sense instigator of some of the problems we are dealing with in our neighbourhood and beyond,” he said.

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SOURCE: THE HINDU

Cisco’s threat intelligence unit has discovered a malicious campaign targeting government employees and military personnel in India. The cyber-attack campaign used malicious Microsoft Office documents (maldoc) and malicious archives to gain access to confidential information related to government and defence agencies.

According to the unit, the earliest instance of this campaign was observed in December 2020 and continues to operate today. The content of maldocs ranged from security advisories, to meeting schedules, to software installations notes. The lures used in the campaign were primarily around documents related to the Government of India’s Kavach application. It is a two-factor authentication (2FA) application used by government employees to access their emails.

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