China could have 1,000 nuclear warheads ready by 2030: Pentagon

Agencies
November 4, 2021

Washington, Nov 4: China is expanding its nuclear arsenal much more quickly than anticipated, narrowing the gap with the United States, the Pentagon said in a report published Wednesday.

China could have 700 deliverable nuclear warheads by 2027, and could top 1,000 by 2030 -- an arsenal two-and-a-half times the size of what the Pentagon predicted only a year ago, according to the report.

The People's Republic of China (PRC) "is investing in, and expanding, the number of its land-, sea-, and air-based nuclear delivery platforms and constructing the infrastructure necessary to support this major expansion of its nuclear forces."

The assessment came in the US Department of Defense's annual report to Congress on Chinese military developments.

Like the United States and Russia, the two leading nuclear powers, China is building a "nuclear triad," capabilities to deliver nuclear weapons from land-based ballistic missiles, from missiles launched from the air, and from submarines, it said.

The report said China is likely not seeking a capability to launch an unprovoked nuclear strike on a nuclear-armed adversary -- primarily the United States -- but wanted to deter attacks from others by maintaining a credible threat of nuclear retaliation.

A year ago, the Pentagon's China report said the country had about 200 deliverable warheads and would double that by 2030.

Independent researchers have in recent months published satellite photographs of new nuclear missile silos in western China.

The acceleration "is very concerning to us," a US defense official said.

It "raises questions about their intentions," the official said, calling for more transparency from Beijing over its nuclear force development.

Main US Rival

The Pentagon has declared China its principal security concern for the future, as Beijing undertakes to build the People's Liberation Army into "world-class forces" by 2049, according to its official plan.

China is expanding its air, space and sea forces with the aim of projecting its power globally, much as the United States military has for decades.

The rivalry has increased concerns about a possible clash between the US and China, especially over Taiwan, which China claims as its territory but which is closely supported by the Untied States.

The new US report said China's swift military modernization aims to have the capability by 2027 to overcome any pushback to an effort to reclaim Taiwan, by pressure or military force.

By 2027, the report says, China aims to have "the capabilities to counter the US military in the Indo-Pacific region, and compel Taiwan's leadership to the negotiation table on Beijing's terms."

October 2020 Crisis

The report confirmed news stories in recent months saying that in October 2020 Pentagon officials were forced to quell real concerns in Beijing that the US, driven by domestic political tensions related to the presidential election, intended to instigate a conflict with China in the South China Sea.

Underscoring its fears, the PLA had issued intensified warnings in state-controlled media, launched large scale military exercises, expanded deployments and put troops on heightened readiness, the report said.

After senior Pentagon officials moved to directly speak to Chinese counterparts, the concerns eased and a Chinese defense spokesman announced publicly that the United States in fact did not plan to trigger a crisis.

"These events highlighted the potential for misunderstanding and miscalculation, and underscored the importance of effective and timely communication," the report said.

The report also questioned the PLA's intent in biological research into substances that potentially have both medical and military uses.

"Studies conducted at PRC military medical institutions discussed identifying, testing, and characterizing diverse families of potent toxins with dual-use applications," the report said, raising concerns over compliance with global biological and chemical weapons treaties.

Such concerns have echoed since early 2020 after the COVID-19 pandemic erupted first in the area of a Chinese biological research laboratory with PLA connections in Hunan.

The Chinese have denied the lab had anything to do with the Covid outbreak, but have limited access to it from investigators.

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News Network
November 18,2021

Bengaluru, Nov 18: Former Karnataka chief minister Jagadish Shettar exuded confidence that BJP would win more than 15 seats out of 25 in polls for Karnataka Legislative Council, slated to be held on December 10.

Speaking to media persons on Thursday, before the inaugural ceremony of Janaswaraj Yatra, he said, there are minimum four to five aspirants for the party's ticket. The core committee submitted the list of aspirants to the Centre. The candidates would be announced soon and he also made it clear that there is no dearth of candidates.

He said the yatra is being held with four teams across the state - one team headed by Shettar will organise conventions in Davangere, Chitradurga, Tumakuru, Ramnagar, Kolar, Chikkaballapur, Bengaluru Rural and Bengaluru Urban. Higher Education Minister C N Ashwath Naryan, Union Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment A  Narayanswamy, Health Education Minister K Sudhakar are part of his team.

Similarly, the other team led by State BJP president Nalin Kumar Kateel started the tour in Koppal and the team would cover eight districts in north Karnataka region. The teams led by former chief minister B S Yediyurappa and Rural Development & Panchayat Raj Minister K S Eshwarappa inaugurated the convention in Karwar and Shivamogga respectively on November 18. So, these four teams will cover 31 districts in Karnataka, he explained.

When questioned on why voters should support BJP in legislative council polls, he said the party gave importance to decentralisation of power. Besides, the Modi-led government is implementing the Jala Siri scheme to ensure that each rural family will get potable water in their household. The Centre and the state government released grants to provide basic facilities in rural areas, he said.

He also made it clear that the results of legislative council polls will not become a referendum on the Bommai-led government and such things can only be gauged from the results of general elections.

On the bitcoin scam, he said it came to light in 2016 when the Congress-led government was in power in Karnataka. "If Congress leaders had evidence with regard to involvement of BJP leaders and their sons in the scam, Siddaramaiah could have taken action against them then. But why didn't he do it?" he questioned and said the government is not shielding anyone in the scam. The investigation is in progress.

He also taunted that Leader of Opposition in Karnataka Legislative Assembly Siddaramaiah is targeting his own party leaders with regard to bitcoin scam.

Urban Development Minister B A Basavaraj, MP G M Siddeshwara, State BJP vice-president B Y Vijayendra, MLC K Gopalaiah, State BJP Secretaries K S Naveen, Mahesh Tenginakai, MLAs N Linganna, S V Ramachandrappa and others were present in the press conference.

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News Network
November 22,2021

Kanpur, Nov 22: The All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) has objected to the proposed Uniform Civil Code (UCC) saying it does not go along with the fundamental rights that allows citizens to practice religion as has been enshrined in the Constitution.

Board officials and members rejected the UCC saying the Muslim society will not accept the proposed civil code as it is neither suitable nor useful for a vast multi-religious country like India.

Qasim Rasool Ilyas, Media Coordinator of the Board, told the media after a two-day convention here on Sunday that every citizen has been given the right in the Constitution to have faith in his religion and tell others about it.

"Uniform Civil Code is not appropriate in a multi-religious society. This is contrary to the fundamental rights of the Constitution," he said.

The board has demanded from the government not to impose UCC on Muslims. He said that the board is against those who conduct forced conversions. An appeal has been made to the Muslim community to oppose it.

The board also sought a new legislation against blasphemy while expressing concern over “increasing instances of insult to holy figures”.

A total of 11 resolutions were passed on Sunday, the last day of the session of Madrasa Darul Talim and Sanat (DTS) in Kanpur's Jajmau. Among them, disputes regarding WAQF properties and conversion etc. were prominent. The board opposed forced conversions and non-religious marriages.

The meeting resolved that no person, organization or government using WAQF has the right to sell it or use it for any other purpose against the intention of WAQF. It is an interference with the religious rights of Muslims and Sharia law, they said.

At the convention, it was demanded from the government that they should bring effective laws for women's safety. Strict action was demanded against those who commented on the Prophet.Special initiative was sought from the government to stop the increasing atrocities against minorities, Dalits and other weaker sections.

An appeal was made to the Muslim society to follow the Shariat, to marry with simplicity and not to ask for dowry. Resolve mutual disputes through arbitration and even then if things do not work out, approach the Darul Qaza. Avoid inter-religious marriage, as it creates division in the society and affects communal harmony, the officials at the convention decided.

The convention suggested religious rules and books are related to faith, so only those who understood religion have the right to interpret it. Governments or other institutions should refrain from interpreting religious books or religious terminology, they said.

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News Network
November 20,2021

rains.jpg

Nov 20: Battered by the heavy rains for over a week, Karnataka is likely to witness another three rainy days according to meteorologists from the India Meteorological Department (IMD).

In its fresh forecast, the IMD has sounded yellow alert in 18 districts on Saturday. Further, officials explained that south interior and coastal Karnataka districts will witness fairly widespread rains for the next three days until Sunday.

"Revealing that the widespread rainfall along with thundershowers to continue in various parts of southern Karnataka. IMD Karnataka officials sounded ‘yellow alert’ in Bengaluru Urban, Rural districts, Tumakuru, Shivamogga, Ramanagar, Kodagu, Hassan, Davangere, Chitradurga, Chikkamagaluru, Ballari, Koppal, Haveri, Gadag, Dharwad, Uttara Kannada, Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts," it said.

Commenting on the prevailing weather pattern over the Bay of Bengal, a senior meteorologist said that the depression over the Bay of Bengal is moving towards the west and a trough has been identified over the coast of Odisha.

Under the influence, southern districts are likely to witness widespread rainfall until Sunday.

According to IMD data, Gubbi and Tumakuru have received the highest rainfall of 15 cm, followed by Chintamani - 12 cm, Mulbagal and Srinivasapura - 11 cm.

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