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The new threats and challenges in the maritime domain, including unconventional security threats....

The new threats and challenges in the maritime domain, including unconventional security threats, illegal fishing, natural disasters, marine pollution, and the impact of climate change.

  • Hard security challenges in the maritime domain have taken on a new dimension in recent years.

  • Unconventional security threats such as illegal fishing, natural disasters, marine pollution, human and drug trafficking, and climate change are the main concerns in the maritime domain.

  • These threats cannot be effectively fought using only military means.

  • States must be prepared to commit capital, resources, and specialist personnel over prolonged periods to address these security needs.

  • India has been emphasizing the concerns of the Global South in discussions on maritime security during its G20 presidency.

  • There is currently no functioning template to fight non-traditional threats at sea.

  • Sustainable development goals in the littorals remain unrealized as the voices of littoral states in Asia, Africa, and the Southern Pacific are ignored by developed countries.

  • Littoral states in the Global South face challenges in meeting marine governance objectives due to cross-jurisdictional linkages and interconnected security goals.

  • Rising sea levels, marine pollution, climate change, and natural disasters disproportionately affect less developed states in the Global South, making them vulnerable.

  • Littoral states in Asia and Africa lack security coordination and unequal law-enforcement capabilities to combat maritime threats.

  • Some states resist maritime cooperation with partner nations to reduce reliance on foreign agencies.

  • Littoral states are willing to share information with partner nations to advance common minimum security goals.

  • India's Maritime Vision 2030 focuses on developing ports, shipping, and inland waterways to generate growth and livelihoods.

  • Dhaka's inaugural official document on the Indo-Pacific emphasizes a developmental approach to maritime security, focusing on the provisioning of goods and services and the protection of marine resources.

  • Africa is also discussing the importance of a thriving Blue Economy and a secure maritime domain.

  • The fight against illegal fishing in Asia and Africa is a significant challenge, with an increase in illegal unreported and unregulated fishing.

  • Faulty policies, lenient regulations, lax law enforcement, and harmful subsidies contribute to the problem of illegal fishing.

  • India's Indo-Pacific Oceans Initiative proposes solutions to maritime challenges, including maritime ecology, marine resources, capacity building, disaster risk reduction, and maritime connectivity.

  • The initiative has the support of major Indo-Pacific states and many Western countries.

  • Implementing a collaborative strategy for maritime security is challenging

  • Maritime agencies need to improve interoperability, share intelligence, and agree on a regional rules-based order

  • States must adapt to an integrated form of maritime security operations and align domestic regulation with international law

  • Many littoral states in the Global South are reluctant to pursue concrete solutions to maritime security challenges

  • Developing nations face collective issues at sea but prioritize political and strategic autonomy over collective action.

The proposal of creating an All-India Judicial Service (AIJS) and its potential impact on the diversity and efficiency of the judiciary. It highlights the current system of recruitment of district judges and the concerns regarding centralization and uniformity in legal education.

  • President Droupadi Murmu suggests the creation of an All-India Judicial Service (AIJS) to diversify the judiciary.

  • The AIJS would allow bright youngsters from varied backgrounds to become judges through a merit-based process.

  • The idea of AIJS has been discussed in the past and has been part of discussions on official policy in the Union government for years.

  • There is no consensus on the proposal, with only two High Courts agreeing to it and 13 being against it.

  • The current system of recruitment of district judges through High Courts and other subordinate judicial officers through public service commissions is more conducive to ensuring diversity.

  • The current system allows for both reservation and a clear understanding of local practices and conditions.

  • Judges require to be well-versed in the issues involved for judicial functioning, unlike the civil service where they are assisted by an experienced lower bureaucracy.

  • Article 312 of the Constitution allows for the creation of an All India Judicial Service (AIJS)

  • A resolution with two-thirds majority from the Council of States and a parliamentary law are required for the creation of AIJS

  • The proposal would require a central law to supersede the rules governing the subordinate judiciary in the States

  • It is unlikely that all States will agree to centralization of another subject from their domain

  • The AIJS would offer a national service for judges not inferior to the post of district judges, with a retirement age of 60

  • However, the lack of country-wide uniformity in legal education and the preference for practical experience over academic brilliance may deter young lawyers from applying for AIJS

  • Top law school graduates are unlikely to sit for a national judicial service recruitment examination, as options such as litigation, joining law firms, and the corporate sector may appear more beneficial

  • The lack of certainty on career progression, as the number of district judges elevated to the High Courts is lower than those from the Bar, may also make AIJS unattractive.

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