While the entire world has been reeling under the COIVD-19 crisis since the beginning of this year, South Asia has witnessed a spike in border disputes, besides facing the rapid spread of the pandemic itself. Although many of these disputes existed before the COVID period, the Chinese claims of territories in India and Bhutan and Nepal’s claim of three disputed territories which India has traditionally claimed to be it's own has brought a new dimension to the security discourse in the sub-continent.
The tourism industry, which depends heavily on a hedonic and sensorial experience, is facing the severest stress ever amid the ongoing pandemic. The interlinked socio-cultural, economic, psychological and political impacts of this magnitude can alter the predictive power of previously studied explanatory models in the tourism recovery process. This article attempts to explain the transformational effect of COVID-19 pandemic on the tourism industry.
Impact of COVID-19 on tourism
Nepal’s House of Representatives (the Lower House of the Parliament) on June 13, unanimously passed the Constitution Amendment Bill to revise the country’s political map, laying claim over areas of Kalapani, Lipulekh and Limpiyadura, which are currently in Indian territory. Earlier, on May 19, Nepal issued a new map by merging these three territories into its map based on the 1816-Sugauli Treaty.
While the COVID-19 has devastated health, economy and social sectors across the world with the death of millions of people, its impact is mixed in the low-intensity conflict regions. In case of India, more than one lakh people have been affected (at the time of finalising this report), and more than three thousand people have succumbed to the pandemic despite a nationwide lockdown imposed since March 23.
"It may be a sheer coincidence that such major reforms have been announced during pandemic times. But such efforts by the state actually transcend regimes, boundaries, difficulties or even emergency situations."
The pharma and other biotechnology agencies in the United States researching Covid-19 are under cyber espionage. As of date, the US authorities do not have any direct evidence to prove this fact but possibly based on the circumstantial evidence the US is making this claim. Besides, there are murmurs that Iran also could be involved in some form of cyber espionage. For the last few months, Chinese hackers, possibly more at the individual level, are found to be targeting some universities, pharmaceutical and other health-care businesses in the US.
Post COVID-19 sustainable urban planning depends on how cycling as an urban mobility component is being prioritised.
Developing a vaccine is a serious job. Post the outbreak of Covid-19, many agencies in the world have started working towards the development of a vaccine to stop the spread of Coronavirus. At present, the usable vaccine is still a few months or a year away. As per the World Health Organisation (WHO), currently around 60 vaccine candidates are in the pre-clinical trial stage. For any vaccine to reach the stage of public distribution, normally takes around 12 to 18 months. It is expected that by January/February 2021, the Covid-19 vaccine could become available.
This year marks the golden jubilee of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and the silver jubilee of its indefinite extension. Legally binding in nature, this Treaty is often regarded as the bedrock of the global nuclear non-proliferation regime. Apart from the non-proliferation efforts, the Treaty advocates disarmament and peaceful use of nuclear energy. It recognizes five nuclear states (N5 states) namely the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, and China.
Just within a few weeks since the Covid-19 virus started spreading from Wuhan, China, in December 2019, it was declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO), consequently affecting lives in 204 countries in varying degrees – some low, others moderate while about a dozen countries seriously affected. Within a span of two weeks, the total positive cases globally have seen 350 per cent increase to touch 2.3 million with death counts crossing 1,50,000 as of April 15, 2020.