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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2557

Monthly archive

George Fernandes

Jaffna received only 1500 MT of food items out of the reported 3800 MT. What happened to the balance items?

Government pledged to send 3800 MT food items by ship to Jaffna. But the ship that arrived in Jaffna brought only 1500 MT of food and other items. Earlier it was widely reported before the departure of the ship MV Mercs Ruhuna from Colombo to Jaffna, that the ship would be carrying 3800 MT of food and other essential items to Jaffna, which would last for a month. But now it has been confirmed by the Government Agent of Jaffna that the ship that arrived on 25th and docked off the Point Pedro jetty has carried only 1500 MT of food and other items. It is said that these items would last only for 10 days.

Message to India

By Dayan Jayatilleka

Though I did waste at least half a decade, post-Premadasa, in something of a revivalist sect or cult, I believe that history has validated my political choices, from the EPRLF’s Pathmanabha to Vijaya to Premadasa, as the most progressive and pro-people options of their times. I am glad of my recent ones: support for Mahinda Rajapakse as president over Ranil Wickremesinghe (that was the available choice) and (in several articles in the Sunday Island) General Sarath Fonseka as army chief. We are successfully resisting Prabhakaran’s long planned attacks thanks largely to the political and military leadership provided respectively by these two. Things could be improved though, were there a Tamil input providing greater sensitivity to the ethnic dimension of reality on the ground, making it a troika with Minister Douglas Devananda keyed in as much as he was by Premadasa, Ranjan Wijeratne and Chandrika.

Foreign crossings jack up depressed share market

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

In their weekly report on the share market the HNB Stockbrokers Equity Research Team indicated that a modest upward trend was witnessed in the market this week, amid activity levels falling to a near three month low on Tuesday. Both indices managed to close slightly higher than last week’s closing level, although the fighting in the North and East continued with no clear sign of an end to the conflict. The All Share Price Index (ASPI) closed the week at 2415.2 points on Friday up by a modest 8.4 points compared to last week, while the Milanka Price Index (MPI) showed a similar movement rising by 8 points to 2732.8 points.

The Political Stalemate

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

President Mahinda Rajapakse probably has far stronger views on the advisability of inviting former President Chandrika Bandaranaike to the SLFP congress than he has on the unitary state…or federalism or war or peace or the LTTE… Mr. Rajapakse was a hawk during the 2001 election (he ‘warned’ about the Tigers taking over Hambantota and Kataragama); he became a dove during his tenure as the Leader of Opposition (many believed him to be Ranil’s man in the SLFP; his stony silence concerning the appeasement process strengthened this impression); he went back to being a hawk well into his premiership, as the relations between the then President and the JVP began to crumble. His current fidelity to the unitary state too can change depending on objective conditions. If the political balance shifts in favour of devolution, if he can push through a political solution without endangering his grip on power (or better still making himself more secure), then he may well do so.

Regulators agree on regional capacity building

By Ashwin Hemmathagama – Our Financial Correspondent

South Asian Securities and Exchange Commission representatives yesterday agreed on regional capacity building in terms of having capital market institution. Elaborating on recent developments in the area of regulations and Indian experience on securities related for development, International Organization for Securities Commissions Emerging Markets Chairman and the Securities Exchange of India Chairman M. Demodaran said: "India has vast number of market intermediaries, public issues, listed entities, and exchanges. Indian market capitalization is ranked high compared to other countries. But we still have certain areas which needs regularizing in terms of emerging markets," he said.

War on Humanitarian Concern : Virus and Violence

By Prof. Kanbawza Win

It seems that the Burmese regime has declared war on Humanitarian Concern especially to AIDS/HIV patients. The latest pressure came from the chairman of Thaketa (10) South, Ward No 2 chairman Mya Thaung, who not only refused them the permission to register as guests but also humiliated one Khin Maung Oo in public for contracting AIDS and intimidated him. In Rangoon’s South Dagon Township, authorities have issued a letter to Phyu Phyu Thin, because she tried to organize a Buddhist ceremony (Hsoon Thut) for HIV/AIDS patients on their last journey. It seems paradoxical that at a time, when the AIDS Conference in Toronto was just completed and the civilized international community was brainstorming of how to alleviate this suffering, Burma, instead of helping these unfortunate patients is bent of harassing them so that they may passed out quickly from this earth.

ICC? I’ve seen enough!

By Tariq A. Al-Maeena

I do not routinely use this column to address sports issues. However an incident recently at the Oval cricket grounds in London during a test match between Pakistan and England prompted me to pursue the subject. There appear to be more troubling matters than sports or the laws governing the game of cricket here. During the course of the game, the umpire, Darryl Hair, an Australian presumed that there was ball tampering by the Pakistanis and took matters in his own hands by awarding the opposing team with 5 penalty runs. The Pakistani players, rightfully aggrieved by his presumptions asked him during the tea break to elaborate on his judgment. When none was forthcoming, they unanimously decided against continuing the game under such circumstances in protest of this umpire’s actions.

Terror and Islam

By Sarla Handoo - Syndicate Features

Several Muslim Ulemas recently vowed in Mumbai to isolate terror suspects within the community and assured the police of full cooperation in dealing with them. They sought services of imams of various mosques to prevent any radicalization of the youth. Maulana Athar Ali of Majlis-e-Shoora said that he salutes the Muslim who tipped the British Police about the mid -air -explosions terror plot. He urged fellow Muslims to look out for ‘the black sheep who bring infamy to the whole community’. Maulana Abdul Jabbar Azmi, Imam of the Hindutani Mosque in Byculla said "one cannot be a good Muslim unless one is loyal to his motherland. Terrorist organizations like the Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad are harming the name of Islam. Muslims have no sympathy for those who perpetrate crime in the name of Islam" They however complained about the alleged selective detention of Muslims after 9/11.

Britain: questions remain over alleged terror plot

It is now more than two weeks since police claimed to have thwarted an imminent plan to explode up to a dozen transatlantic jets mid-flight. In the early hours of August 10, 24 people were detained under anti-terrorist legislation that allows suspects to be held for up to 28 days without charge. At the same time emergency security measures were imposed at British airports, causing chaos and delays. Metropolitan Police chief Paul Stephenson said these were crucial as the alleged terrorists intended to cause "mass murder on an unimaginable scale."

Fernandes cancels Eelam Tamil meet at home

By M Rama Rao - Reporting for Asian Tribune

George FernandesGeorge Fernandes, the aging Indian socialist, has, in an unexpected move, announced the cancellation of what is to be a star studded intellectual brain storm on Sri Lanka's ethnic problem at his residence here on August 30. The moot was the first ever attempt to take Eelam debate, hither to confined to Tamil Nadu to North India. The first indication about the cancellation of the meet which should have coincided with a Gandhian style hunger strike to press the demand for declaration of Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Israel as terrorist states, was given by Dr Subramanian Swamy, himself a former Indian minister, known for his maverick politics and championing unusual causes.