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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2403

Monthly archive

Pratibha Patil

Pratibha Patil declared elected as India's 13th President

By M. Rama Rao in New Delhi

Pratibha PatilIndia Saturday elected Pratibha Patil (72) as its 13th President in a bitterly contested election that saw some cross voting from the BJP. Bhaironsingh Shekhawat, her lone rival, accepted defeat in 'humility' and resigned as the Vice President. "This is the victory of the principles which our Indian people uphold", the President elect told reporters outside her residence here in an obvious dig at the BJP led NDA which indulged in mudslinging under the garb electioneering for a cause. Half way through the campaign the BJP camp lost whatever hopes of victory that were there but they certainly did not expect the huge drubbing the electorate had delivered to Shekhawat.

No hope yet for Sri Lankans held in Thailand

Thai immigration authorities continues to remain tight lipped about the plight of the Sri Lankan languishing in the Immigration Detention Centre and in other prisons in Thailand. According to informed sources Thai Government has refused access to diplomats from asylum giving countries to meet the Sri Lankan detainees to interview them and to assess whether they are eligible for resettlement in their countries under humanitarian laws. "Asian Tribune" learns that still there is no change as far as the UNHCR is concerned. Kitty McKinsey, UNHCR’s Public Relations and Information Officer for Asia based in Bangkok, told Asian Tribune, that they have no access to those Sri Lankans detained in the detention centres.

Nagenahira Navodaya or Leidensweg

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

The government has announced an ambitious plan to develop the East in six months. The Rajapakse regime is strong on fashioning attractive development programmes and holding impressive commencement ceremonies but somewhat weak when it comes to actual implementation – as the experiences of the last one and half years amply demonstrate. That is the obvious danger in the "Nagenahira Navodaya" – that the grandiose plan will remain just that, a plan. It is happening in the South with other much publicised programmes of the regime; and it can easily happen in the East. The fallout of such a failure is self-evident.

Topsy-turvy human rights in Sri Lanka

H. L. D. Mahindapala

This Sunday morning the readers are presented with the list for digestion before breakfast. Imagine for a moment the Government of Sri Lankan (GOSL), which is accused of being Sinhala-dominated, going all out to decimate the cream of the Tamil leadership and succeeding. Imagine for a moment, GOSL sending out letters to all Tamil families with names of Tamil youth who must join in the on-going war whether they like it or not. Imagine for a moment the helpless Tamil parents and their children cowering in fear of the next knock on the door by GOSL agents to drag their children into an unwanted war.

Pressure mounting on government to disarm Karuna group

All attempts by the remaining LTTE cadres in the Thoppigala area to leave for Vanni have been thwarted by the Sri Lanka Security forces. According to intelligence reports the LTTE Commander, Jeyam, including Mano Master, Nagesh, Keerthi inteligence Chief of the East, and others are still holed up in the Thoppigala area. At the height of the offensive to capture Thoppigala, when the Tiger cadres were facing defeat, a group of 200 Tigers divided into small groups and were trying their level best to cross from the region through the Main Supply Route (MSR) Batticaloa Central – Welikantha up to Chenkalady.

Moral Policing is same everywhere

By M. Burhanuddin Qasmi

Professor Shivji Panikkar who was in Ahmedabad to inaugurate the three-day National Students' Festival for Peace, Justice and Communal Harmony organised by Act For Harmony and Democracy (Anhad) was attacked by Hindu right wing activists. J S Bandukwala, president of People’s Union For Civil Liberties while responding to the Ahmedabad incidence said, "We condemn the growth of fascist forces against the freedom of speech in Gujarat."

India-Myanmar-China relations

By Col R Hariharan (retd.)

Since the World War II, Myanmar better known the world over as Burma, had never attracted so much international attention as now. Actually, there are reasons both global and local for this development. The rise of China as a major global economic power and the unlocking of India's potential to grow as yet another global economic power are redefining international relationships in South and Southeast Asia. Myanmar is now viewed as a critical area of interest to China and India. It is of special interest to the U.S. which would like to check the over riding influence of China in this region while cruising on its journey to the status of a contending global power.

Why Chinese workers are under attack?

Dr Shabir Choudhry

China is perhaps the most reliable and friendly country of Pakistan on earth. Despite some unfriendly acts of Pakistani secret agencies – supporting 'jihad' in parts of China, especially in Xinjiang, and forging too close alliance with America, China has continued to be friendly and helping Pakistan in various mega projects. This relationship is called 'all weather friendship', and Chinese President Hu Jintao called it "sweeter than honey". But over the past few weeks this relationship has become under sever pressure, and China had to express its unhappiness in public.

The Legacy of the plight of Hindus in Bangladesh - Part-VI

By Rabindranath Trivedi - for Asian Tribune from Dhaka

After partition, most of the prominent Hindu leaders left East Bengal in despair, having lost all hopes for effective political participation in Pakistan where a single Muslim communal party was monopolizing political power. The remainder of the Hindu leadership concentrated on articulating minority grievances and seeking constitutional safeguards for the community…In an attempt to ally with the Bengali Muslims, the Hindu leaders espoused Bengali causes in the central and provincial assemblies…During the period 1954-58, they shared political power with the majority community both at the center and Provincial assemblies.

An Open Letter to All Tamils – A Sinhalese perspective

Jayantha de Silva of Australia in Open Letter to Tamils, an s appeal, points out that it must be understood that the call for a Tamil Homeland in Sri Lanka will never come about, not only because the Sinhalese people, however meek and mild they are, will never accept it (and any government that tries to force such a thing will be chased out of Parliament), but because it is morally wrong, there is no reason for it and it is totally unjustified. It is morally wrong because Sri Lanka is equally the land of the Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims, and Burghers who now constitute its population, and each must be free to go anywhere in the land as they please. Today, most citizens of Sri Lanka are not free to visit the areas given to the LTTE by a weak and naïve Prime Minister. It is morally wrong because no one race or creed or religion should enjoy special privileges, and should not have the need for special privileges. Everyone should be treated alike by the State. If not, redress should be through legislation or the courts, not by taking up arms.

In a stunning rebuke to Musharraf, Supreme Court orders chief justice reinstated

In a major blow to Pakistani dictator General Pervez Musharraf, the country’s Supreme Court has ordered the immediate reinstatement of suspended Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry and the quashing of all charges against him. Lawyers gathered outside the Supreme Court building chanted “Go Musharraf, Go,” as Pakistan’s highest court delivered its judgment to prolonged applause within. There were also celebratory demonstrations in Lahore, Karachi, Quetta, Peshawar, and other cities.

Human Rights First reveals Bush Administration’s dismal human rights record

Daya Gamage – US National Correspondent Asian Tribune

Following President Bush’s Executive Order of July 20 interpreting the Geneva Conventions Common Article 3 which covers inhuman treatment, torture and degrading treatment to prisoners of war as applied to the CIA interrogation techniques, America’s premier rights group Human Rights First issued a statement on Saturday, July 21 giving the history of human rights abuses of the current U.S. administration.


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