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India ranks 131 on global index of ICT access: UN report

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New Delhi: India ranked a lowly 131 out of 167 countries on the global index that measures the information and communication technology (ICT) access in a country. However, India has witnessed a gradual increase in the number of households using the internet.

UN International Telecommunications Union’s flagship measuring the Information Society Report disclosed that globally 43 per cent of the world population is on the online platform which is 3.2 billion people.

The report also said that mobile subscriptions have reached almost 7.1 billion worldwide and 95 per cent of the world population is covered by mobile network now.

This report recorded the data between 2010 to 2015 and also said that every nation improved during this time. India, however, saw a fall of 6 notches from its position in 2010.

Asia displays a stark difference among its countries’ level of access to technology. While Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong are among the six countries from Asia that are in top 20. Countries like India are ranked disappointingly low.

South Korea secured the numero uno spot followed by Denmark.

India saw an increase in the number of mobile users. In 2010, it was 62 per cent and now in 2015, it has increased to almost 75 per cent. The number of household with a computer has doubled from 6.1 to 13 and the percentage of individuals using the internet went up to 18 per cent from 7.5 per cent, five years ago.

The guild between nations is shown by the fact that 81 per cent households in developed countries have home internet access which is just 36 per cent in the developing world and it drops below to hardly 6 per cent in the least developed countries.

The was a rapid growth in the use of the internet in mobile phones.

India still has a large portion of the population living in villages so it is obvious that the country will take its time to improve its rank.

 

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India Ends all Imports of Iranian Oil, Says Washington Ambassador

Trump last year pulled out of a multinational pact under which Iran drastically scaled back its nuclear work in return for promises of sanctions relief

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india, iranian oil
FILE - A worker walks atop a tanker wagon to check the freight level at an oil terminal on the outskirts of Kolkata, India. VOA

India has ended all imports of oil from Iran, its ambassador in Washington says, becoming the latest country to grudgingly comply with threatened U.S. sanctions.

India had already sharply decreased its imports from Iran and bought one million tonnes of crude in April, the last month before Washington stepped up its pressure campaign against Tehran and ended all exemptions to sanctions, Ambassador Harsh Vardhan Shringla said. “That’s it. After that, we haven’t imported any,” Shringla told reporters Thursday during a briefing on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s election victory.

No Venezuela oil, either

Shringla said that energy-hungry India has also ended all imports from Venezuela because it considered itself a partner of the United States. But he said the shift had caused pain at home, with Iran formerly supplying 10 percent of India’s oil needs.

Calling Iran “an extended neighbor” of India with long-standing cultural links, Shringla declined to say whether New Delhi shared President Donald Trump’s concerns about Tehran. “This is an issue that has to be dealt with, really, between the United States and Iran. We are only, in many senses, looking at it as a third party,” Shringla said.

But he added: “We would not like to see a move towards any escalation in any way in that area, for the simple reason that we depend very heavily on stability in that part of the world.”

iranian oil, india
FILE – U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to reporters after signing a proclamation declaring his intention to withdraw from the JCPOA Iran nuclear agreement in the Diplomatic Room at the White House in Washington, May 8, 2018. VOA

Trump last year pulled out of a multinational pact under which Iran drastically scaled back its nuclear work in return for promises of sanctions relief.

The Trump administration has instead ramped up economic pressure on Iran and recently deployed military assets, including an aircraft carrier strike group, to the area.
The United States as of May 2 ended exemptions it had given to eight governments from its unilateral order to stop buying Iranian oil.

Turkey stops imports

Turkey, which enjoyed a waiver and vocally disagreed with the U.S. policy, has also stopped importing oil from Iran, a Turkish official said this week. State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus welcomed the news from Turkey.

ALSO READ: India, China, Turkey Silently Purchasing Iran’s Crude Oil as US Ban Begins

“We want the whole world to comply with these sanctions, and we’re grateful for our partners and allies that are respecting them,” she told reporters. The Indian ambassador, however, voiced confidence that U.S. sanctions would not affect its partnership in developing Iran’s Chabahar port.

India wants to use the port to ship supplies into Afghanistan in a detour from its archrival Pakistan, which historically backed the Taliban. “I think it is in the interest of both our countries and all others concerned to ensure that that lifeline continues for the people of Afghanistan,” Shringla said. (VOA)