25 April, 2014: News and Articles updates

25 April, 2014

1. How Suicide and Politics Mix in India: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/25/opinion/how-suicide-and-politics-mix-in-india.html?hpw&rref=opinion&_r=0

2. Climate change’s potential impact must figure in food production efforts: http://www.eindiadiary.com/content/climate-changes-potential-impact-must-figure-food-production-efforts#sthash.Y6SbdFL2.dpuf

3. How key political parties plan to tackle India’s water crisis: http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/news/politics/how-key-political-parties-plan-to-tackle-indias-water-crisis/article5944349.ece

4. Carbon loss from soil accelerating climate change: http://www.geosquare.in/carbon-loss-from-soil-accelerating-climate-change.html

25 April, 2014: News updates from India

25 April, 2014

1. MH370: Angry scenes as relatives meet airline staff: A meeting between relatives of Chinese passengers aboard missing flight MH370 and Malaysia Airlines staff descended into chaos Thursday, with police stepping in to separate both sides amid angry scenes in a Beijing hotel. http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/malaysianairlinemystery2014/angry-scenes-as-chinese-mh370-relatives-meet-airline-staff/article1-1212044.aspx#sthash.zlkphRER.dpuf

2. Arrested AAP leaders launch protest in jail: AAP’s Nainital-Udhamsingh Nagar candidate Balli Singh Cheema and two other party leaders on Thursday launched a protest in the Haldwani jail premises, where they have been lodged for allegedly breaching CrPC, demanding that they be released unconditionally as they had done “nothing wrong”. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Arrested-AAP-leaders-launch-protest-in-jail/articleshow/34173919.cms?

3. Students discuss global warming, climate change: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/patna/Students-discuss-global-warming-climate-change/articleshow/34169531.cms?

4. ICG Personnel Attack Fishermen: Two fishermen of Idinthakarai village were today allegedly assaulted by Indian Coast Guard personnel in the sea, fishermen association sources said. http://news.outlookindia.com/items.aspx?artid=838387

5. Former U.S. test site sues nuclear nations for disarmament failure: http://www.firstpost.com/world/former-u-s-test-site-sues-nuclear-nations-for-disarmament-failure-1496305.html

6. India, Pakistan must reinvest in economic ties: US think-tank: http://zeenews.india.com/news/south-asia/india-pakistan-must-reinvest-in-economic-ties-us-think-tank_927031.html

7. Countdown begins to save planet: http://www.deccanherald.com/content/401802/countdown-begins-save-planet.html

8. Tiger’ women carry on anti-nuclear protest: http://www.telegraphindia.com/1140425/jsp/nation/story_18276872.jsp#.U1nhWNL_BOI

9. On Modi turf, Sonia rips into Gujarat model: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/lok-sabha-elections-2014/news/On-Modi-turf-Sonia-rips-into-Gujarat-model/articleshow/34172754.cms?

10. Two more infants die in Attapadi: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/thiruvananthapuram/Two-more-infants-die-in-Attapadi/articleshow/34171354.cms?

11. Women Officers Put on Edge by Calls of Nocturnal Visitors in Tribal Pocket: http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/tamil_nadu/Women-Officers-Put-on-Edge-by-Calls-of-Nocturnal-Visitors-in-Tribal-Pocket/2014/04/25/article2187799.ece

23 April, 2014: News Updates from India

23 April, 2014

Land Acquisition

1. High land cost to pinch govt: There is a growing clamour against the provisions of a new land acquisition law with several infrastructure sectors – from road, to railway and power – fearing a three-fold jump in acquisition cost due to the new legislation. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/business/india-business/High-land-cost-to-pinch-govt/articleshow/34083984.cms?

2. Delay in framing rules affects acquisition, says collector: District collector M G Rajamanickam has admitted that land acquisition for Kochi metro has been affected due to the state government’s failure in framing rules for the new land acquisition act introduced by the Union government this year. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/kochi/Delay-in-framing-rules-affects-acquisition-says-collector/articleshow/34083524.cms

3. Gail Decides To Cancel Contract To Lay Pipeline In Tamil Nadu: Gail (India) Ltd. has decided to cancel the Rs.3,400 crore Kochi-Mangalore LNG pipeline project, giving a temporary relief to Tamil Nadu farmers who were protesting against the laying the pipeline in Tamil Nadu, reports said. While welcoming the development, farmers said they would protest until the government scraps the Petroleum and Minerals Pipelines (PMP) Act. http://www.rttnews.com/2304714/gail-decides-to-cancel-contract-to-lay-pipeline-in-tamil-nadu.aspx?type=in&utm_source=google&utm_campaign=sitemap

4. Polavaram Issue Looms Large on Aswaraopet: The Centre’s decision to merge the villages that are likely to be submerged under the Polavaram project with Seemandhra will have a major impact on the prospects of the candidates who are contesting from Aswaraopet Assembly constituency. The voters may vote for the candidate who can give assurance of preventing the merging of villages with Seemandhra. http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/andhra_pradesh/Polavaram-Issue-Looms-Large-on-Aswaraopet/2014/04/23/article2184069.ece

5. Dry Lands a Common Sight as Polavaram Project Lies Pending: http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/andhra_pradesh/Dry-Lands-a-Common-Sight-as-Polavaram-Project-Lies-Pending/2014/04/22/article2182725.ece

6. Probe against Lafarge: The compliance adviser/ ombudsman (CAO) is assessing a complaint filed against Lafarge Surma Cement’s land acquisition and limestone quarrying operation close to villages of Shella and Tynger in Meghalaya. http://www.telegraphindia.com/1140422/jsp/northeast/story_18264097.jsp#.U1dlUVWSyo4


7. Forest Dept Finds Ally in Tribals to Fight Poachers: http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/odisha/Forest-Dept-Finds-Ally-in-Tribals-to-Fight-Poachers/2014/04/23/article2184393.ece

8. Yercaud Tribals Travel 32 KM Uphill to Cast Vote: http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/tamil_nadu/Yercaud-Tribals-Travel-32-KM-Uphill-to-Cast-Vote/2014/04/23/article2184232.ece1

Human-animal conflict

9. Translocation seldom settles human-leopard conflicts: http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/translocation-seldom-settles-humanleopard-conflicts/article5939783.ece

Caste System in India

10. Seers to Fast to Denounce Untouchability: http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/karnataka/Seers-to-Fast-to-Denounce-Untouchability/2014/04/23/article2184271.ece

Anti-nuclear movement

11. Taiwan anti-nuclear activist starts hunger strike: http://zeenews.india.com/news/world/taiwan-anti-nuclear-activist-starts-hunger-strike_926327.html

Press Release: Medha Patkar’s election campaign ends on a high note

Press Note: April 22, 2014

With Tremendous Response from Voters, Campaign Ends on High Note:

Vows to continue challenging the Modi-fied Politics and Expose the Corruption of NCP

As the campaign for the 16th Lok Sabha draws to a closure today, the campaign witnessed tremendous response from wide range of people in the Mumbai North East constituency. This response and the large number of issues emerging is also because of the failure of Corporator, MLAs and MP in discharging their duties as elected representatives. None of them taken any steps to curb the fundamental corruption involved in the projects. There has not been any attempt to policy making focussing amenities and housing. People’s response to our campaign was because of we raising these issues in the past years and because of their faith in our continuous work on those issues.

Out of my nearly 40 years of work, the 17 years I worked in Mumbai has given me an inside out knowledge about the basic issues of the constituency. This election is important for us, as we seek larger representation of people in decision making and to continue raise those issue with more strength and vigour. Hence we make a pledge to implement all national level commitments by Aam Aadmi Party in its Manifesto and in the Mumbai Manifesto. Further, we issue a Mumbai North East specific prime issues pledging that we will leave no stone unturned to fulfil those. We also reiterate that all our efforts will be participatory, transparent and accountable, involving the people of the constituency across the caste-class-creed-gender differences, and political ideologies.

Hence we appeal to the voters to join us in these efforts, with their strengths and commitment, to bring in change and make our city corruption free. We will achieve this together with participation of people from all walks of life, contribution of professional skills and inputs from experts.

Modi’s lies and threat to not just secular fabric, but even dalits, adivasis and downtrodden

In a rally addressed by Modi in Mumbai yesterday he said that “Maharshtra would get electricity worth Rs 400 crores for free if the project (Sardar Sarovar Narmada project) was completed.” The blatant lie repeated for the second time in this election season is another attempt t to mislead the people. Maharashtra, which has also sacrificed a few thousands crores of revenue, by submergence of 33 hilly adivasi villages, will lose 9500 ha of land, parts of it are forests, in the Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP). Additionally she spends Rs.3000 crores in proportion to the 27% of power from the project. SSP is an interstate project, with financial commitment by each of the party states. How can then the power be free to Maharashtra?

While Modi builds his campaign on lies and twisted facts, he poses a serious threat to the secular fabric of the country. By his silence isn’t Modi supporting Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s (VHP) president Pravin Togadia’s communal venom in Bhavnagar by saying “evict Muslims from Hindu areas”?

His outlook towards the dalits and socially marginalised is evident from his reported statement sometime earlier where he, observed while releasing his book Samajik Samrasata, that dalits were like mentally retarded children. What an irony, somebody who does not respect the dalits and marginalised writes a book with its title Samajik Samrasata (Social Equity)!

Last year, The Gujarat High Court ordered the Gujarat government to strictly adhere to the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of) Forest Rights Act, 2006, and the rules framed thereafter under this central Act. The order came on a public interest litigation (PIL) by a group of NGOs, which said the state government was violating the provisions of the Act in deciding the claims of tribals and had arbitrarily rejected more than one lakh such claims.

It will be a figment imagination, generated by aggressive advertisement that Modi with a proved track record for being anti poor, anti dalit, anti adivasi and minorities could lead the country which is built on the foundations of secularism, tolerance and respect to each other.

We will stand by dalits, who apart from asserting their identity and dignity, faces the challenge of getting the basic rights, as upheld in the Constitution, as envisioned by Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar. The positive discrimination and reservation will be implemented only when they stand united.

If Modi around, can NCP be far behind?

We will challenge the corrupt party NCP, who are involved in scams worth thousands of crores. Some of them include, irrigation scam, Gosikhurd canal scam, sugar factory scam, even the former Member of Parliament seem to have contributed to corrupt practices in using the MPLAD funds. By not raising the corruption issues in this Constituency, such as allotment of MHADA land, rehabilitation of slum dwellers and in infrastructure projects, he has permitted the corrupt practices.

He cannot shrug the responsibility of his inability to curb corruption, failure to address the fundamental issues of the constituency and not being around for the people when the people needed him most.

We will launch enquiries into all those allegations of corruption once the elections are over.

We appeal to all voters of the Constituency to come out in large numbers on the voting day, cast their vote and be a part of the democratic process. We appeal to the voters to cast their vote in favour of honesty, accountability and good governance and against corruption, communalism and injustice.

Medha Patkar

Narmada Bachao Andolan,
Narmada-Ashish, Off Kasravad Road,
Navalpura, Badwani,
Madhya Pradesh – 451551
Ph: 07290-291464; Fax: 07290-222549
E-mail: medha.narmada@gmail.com ;

National Alliance of People’s Movements
National Office: Room No. 29-30, 1st floor, ‘A’ Wing, Haji Habib Bldg, Naigaon Cross Road, Dadar (E), Mumbai – 400 014;

6/6, Jangpura B, Mathura Road, New Delhi – 110014; Phone : 011 26241167 / 2435 4737; E-mail: napmindia@gmail.com | napmindia@napm-india.org Web : http://www.napm-india.org

Press Release: Samajwadi Janparishad


Samajwadi Janparishad

New delhi 22 April

Shri Sunil , General Secy of Samajwadi Janparoishad and Editor of Samayik Varta breathed his last on 21st April 2014 of a massive brain hamemmorhage. He was a top-notch scholar of Economics, toping his MA. & M.Phil in JNU. Rather than perusing a brilliant academic career he opted to work amongst the Adivasis in Kesla, distt. Hoshangabad of M.P.

Along with Sathi Rajnarayan he organized a march from Kesla to Bhopal in which actoivists of Samta Sangthan (of which he was a founder member) the right to clean drinking water in 1983.

The success of this venture led to the founding of Kisan Adivasi Samgathan from the right to cultivate the banks of Tawa reservoir by displaced persons to a co-oparative- Tawa Matsya Sahkari Samgh (TMSS) which became a model for other like minded people in the country.

He had an indefatigable desire for work and faculties that allowed him to walk 20 Kilometers in the forest around Kesala to organize people and then write an article at night much after all his group had retired for the day.

Along with Kisan Adivasi Sangthan and Samajwadi Janparishad he was active in Jan Sangharsh Morcha, M.P. and National Alliance of Peoples’ Movements (NAPM).

For the last 5 years he was actively involved in the Shiksha Adhikar Manch (AIFTRE) ALONG WITH Anil Sadgopal and Ramesh Patnaik as one of the National Convenors.

Nari Jagiriti Manch of Kesla and Itarsi had succefully organized an anti-liquor movement to stop liquor being sold in their neighbourhood. Sunil was one of the motivational forces supporting this movement.

He had deeply believed in the involvement and leadership of the marginalised people as he considered it to be be the backbone of alternative politics. Shining examples are the TMSS and Samajwadi Janparishad.

Samajwadi Janparishad, formed from amalgamation of other like minded movements had a program of publishing booklets on economic policy and the prevalent development model. In 1991 a movement for opposing WTO was launched. Sunil was at the forefront of this movement for building an alternative model and lived with his wife Smita , daughter Shiuli and Son Iqbal in Bhoomkapura, an Adivasi village 20 KMs away from Itarsi, M.P.

After the demise of Shri Kishan Patnaik, socialist thinker and his mentor, he donned the former’s mantel of touring the entire country and holding political dialogue with different peoples’ movements.

In his death we have lost a person who lived his life according to his ideals. Like Gandhi, he was a person whose entire life was his message.

Activists of Samajwadi Janparishad and other like-minded movements paid their homage at Lodhi Road Crematorium, chief amongst whom were Justice Rajinder Sachchar, Anupam Mishr, Prof. Satish Jain, Prof. Arun Kumar, Prof. Kamal Nayan Kabra, Ms. Manju Mohan, Prof. Rajkumar Jain, Prof Prem Singh, Kalpana Mehta, Ranjana Padhi and Chanchal Mukherjee.

(Atul Kumar) (Pyoli)

President, Samajwadi Janparishad, Delhi Gen. Secy, Samajwadi Janparishad, Delhi

19 April, 2014 News updates contd…

1. FACT Awaits Solace as Stir Crosses 180 Days: hree months since the Save FACT Action Committee started the hunger strike to save the sinking Fertilizers and Chemicals Travancore (FACT), there seems to be no hope in sight for `991-crore financial package, the only way out for the 65-year-old fertiliser major. http://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/kochi/FACT-Awaits-Solace-as-Stir-Crosses-180-Days/2014/04/19/article2176204.ece

2. Voters stage dharna at Council Hall; all political parties except Congress join them: Many were in for a rude shock at polling booths when they found their names missing from the voters’ list, thus couldn’t vote; stage dharna at Council Hall; all political parties except Congress joined them.  http://www.dnaindia.com/pune/report-voters-stage-dharna-at-council-hall-all-political-parties-except-congress-join-them-1979956

3. EC Lens on Ajit’s Threat, Deadline Breach: http://www.newindianexpress.com/elections/news/EC-Lens-on-Ajits-Threat-Deadline-Breach/2014/04/19/article2176352.ece

4. A nun-lawyer’s habit starts court dress code debate in Delhi: http://www.kractivist.org/a-nun-lawyers-habit-starts-court-dress-code-debate-in-delhi-womenrights/

19 April, 2014: New Updates from India

19 April 2014

1. Industry ministry secy for rejig of land acquisition law: The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) will press to the next government for redrafting the recently enacted Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act. http://www.business-standard.com/article/economy-policy/industry-ministry-secy-for-rejig-of-land-acquisition-law-114041800844_1.html

2. Why is This Dam being constructed? Is this not an example of Big Dam Fundamentalism? http://sandrp.wordpress.com/2014/04/18/why-is-this-dam-being-constructed/

3. India: Non vegetarian majority with a vegetarian ruling class? The Hindu newspaper, which has its main office in Chennai, has asked its employees not to bring non vegetarian food to the dining room because the smell offends vegetarian members of the staff. Is it an illiberal step? In the times we live, dietary restriction, or license, would be the wrong measure to gauge liberalism in a newspaper office. http://www.indiatomorrow.net/eng/india-non-vegetarian-majority-with-a-vegetarian-ruling-class-?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=emailemail&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Indiatomorrownet+%28IndiaTomorrow.net%29

4. New Evidence of Suicide Epidemic Among India’s ‘Marginalised’ Farmers: Latest statistical research finds strong causal links between areas with the most suicides and areas where impoverished farmers are trying to grow crops that suffer from wild price fluctuations due to India’s relatively recent shift to free market economics. http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_29812.cfm

5. SC clears way for land acquisition for Jamia: Clearing the decks for the expansion of Jamia Millia Islamia, the Supreme Court on Wednesday allowed the Delhi government to acquire about 107 bighas (approximately 26 hectares) of prime land in Okhla village in south Delhi. http://www.newkerala.com/news/2014/fullnews-40664.html#.U1IQdHTiFMQ

6. Solidarity with local struggle of Holi village in Chamba: An independent all women’s fact finding team visited Holi village to be affected by GMR’s 180 MW Hydro power project on 16 and 17th April 2014. The team comprising of Nandini Rao from Women against sexual violence and state repression, Sridevi Panicker, an independent Delhi based lawyer, Sarvesh, a senior freelance photojournalist during its visit interacted with representatives of the communities to be affected by the project’s 15 km long tunnel. http://www.kractivist.org/press-release-solidarity-with-local-struggle-of-holi-village-in-chamba/

Jesus Lived in a Police State – John W. Whitehead

Jesus Lived in a Police State

By John W. Whitehead

“There is no evidence that Jesus himself openly advocated violent actions. But he was certainly no pacifist. “Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth. I have not come to bring peace, but the sword” (Matthew 10:34 | Luke 12:51).” ― Reza Aslan, Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article38276.htm

17 April, 2014: News Updates from India

17 April, 2014

1. Anti-nuclear lobby opposes commercial deal for Jaitapur project during polls: The anti-nuclear lobby led by the Konkan Bachao Samiti (KBC) has urged the Election Commission of India and the chief electoral officer (CEO) to direct the Centre to defer the signing of  between the Nuclear Power Corporation () and French major for the  nuclear power project till the Lok Sabha elections are over. http://www.business-standard.com/article/current-affairs/anti-nuclear-lobby-opposes-commercial-deal-for-jaitapur-project-during-polls-114041700508_1.html

2. Kudankulam: PMANE Protesters Take to Streets Over Sonia’s Visit: The People’s Movement Against Nuclear Energy (PMANE) organised a black flag protest at Idinthakarai against AICC president Sonia Gandhi’s visit to the State on Wednesday. On their 975th day of the anti-KKNPP struggle in Idinthakarai, PMANE members covered their mouths with black cloth and held placards condemning the Congress-led UPA government. http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/tamil_nadu/PMANE-Protesters-Take-to-Streets-Over-Sonias-Visit/2014/04/17/article2173017.ece

3. Daily wage labourers pitch in for the Left parties: Puducherry has been closely associated with communism for several generations, with V. Subbiah’s protests against the French regime bringing about the eight-hour work day for the first time in Asia. Since then, the Left parties have had some strongholds in the Union Territory. For the working classes especially, the Left parties have a special meaning to them. http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/daily-wage-labourers-pitch-in-for-the-left-parties/article5917611.ece

4. Fireworks manufacturers invited for talks in Delhi: Fireworks manufacturers in Sivakasi have been invited to New Delhi for talks on April 21 with officials in the Department of Industrial Policy and to discuss the concerns raised by the cracker industry. http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/fireworks-manufacturers-invited-for-talks-in-delhi/article5921408.ece

5. Anna Hazare’s office gets threat calls: http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/anna-hazare-s-office-gets-threat-calls/article1-1208895.aspx

6. Naxal areas seek better execution of package: Lingering insecurities over the rehabilitation and “poor” implementation of the special package for Naxal-affected areas should remain in the priority list of Lok Sabha candidates, said residents of Kudremukh National Park. http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Mangalore/naxal-areas-seek-better-execution-of-package/article5921558.ece