One of the dozen megabiodiverse countries of the world, India has an impressive 1,263 species of birds – 12% of the number of species worldwide.
Activists are hopeful that the judgments will help deter private companies from functioning with impunity and under the cover of governmental apathy.
In its rush to bring China down a peg, New Delhi should not forget to underscore the political basis of its own territorial and commercial interests in the region.
Tension between the Philippines and China has been rising as an international tribunal in The Hague prepares to deliver a ruling in the next few months in a case about the South China Sea lodged by Manila in 2013.
International law only permits the right of “innocent passage” for military vessels in the territorial sea, which means no manoeuvres, no gathering intelligence, but a straight passage through the 12 nm zone.