Thursday, August 26, 2010

Updates

1) Nepal (from SATP): Wow!! is all I can say.

The Central Committee (CC) meeting of the Unified Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (UCPN-M) which was held on August 25 in Kathmandu witnessed a division among the leadership opinions, reports Kantipuronline. According to sources, the vice-chairman of UCPN-M Baburam Bhattarai and senior leader Mohan Baidya presented a “counter report” against the political document presented by Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal alias Prachanda.

Meanwhile, the Nepal Army (NA) said it will boycott the meeting of Joint Monitoring Coordination Committee (JMCC) scheduled for on August 26. “We have taken this decision after the United Nations (UN) rejected our request not to table the agenda concerning Army recruitment in tomorrow’s meeting,” said NA Spokesman Ramindra Chhetri. Earlier, the People's Liberation Army (PLA) had announced that it will register a complaint at the meeting against the recruitment announced by the NA. The Army has argued that its recruitment is in line with the Interim Constitution and the Army Act 2007 and that there is no need to make it an issue of discussion.

Further, the NA accused the United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) of conniving with UCPN-M to tarnish the image of the NA and prolong its stay beyond September 15, reports Himalayan Times. “The 60-week roadmap of the UNMIN has helped the Maoists to delay the army integration process, and the Maoists seem to be adamant on extending the mandate of the UNMIN at any cost. It has helped weaken the position of NA. The so-called roadmap is nothing but its latent desire to extend its stay in Nepal. This shows the underlying common interests of the Maoists and the UNMIN in Nepali peace process. It proves that the UNMIN’s role has been serving the interests of the UCPN-Maoist,” a confidential paper from NA Headquarter stated.


According to Nepal News, the Indian Foreign Minister S.M. Krishna said that India’s special envoy to Nepal Shyam Saran's Nepal visit was aimed at building consensus among all concerned parties for concluding the peace process and the drafting of the new constitution. In a written reply to a question in India's Lower House of Parliament, the Lok Sabha, Krishna said, "Special Envoy, Shri Shyam Saran visited Nepal from 4 - 6 August, 2010 to meet with a cross section of Nepalese political leaders and to express India’s genuine desire as a neighbour and time-tested friend of Nepal, to see a successful conclusion of the peace process and the drafting of a new Constitution through the building of a consensus among all parties concerned."

2) NE terrorist watch and PC speak (also from SATP):

Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram on August 25 said that while the year 2009 was a distinct improvement on the year 2008, it is in the 2010 that we have seen a dramatic decline in the number of incidents and in the number of casualties in the Northeast, according to Assam Tribune. There have been only 464 incidents until August 15, as against 1,297 and 1,561 for the whole year in 2009 and 2008 respectively. He pointed out: “Only 52 civilians have been killed, as against 264 and 466 respectively, and we have lost only 15 men of the security forces. Nevertheless, I must admit with regret that Manipur and Assam have been affected by long-duration blockades and bandhs and by intermittent violence.”
...
The Union Minister said that it is a matter of great satisfaction that a number of groups are engaged in talks with the Government of India. Among them are National Socialist Council of Nagaland-Isak-Muivah (NSCN-IM), pro-talk faction of the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB), Nunisa faction of the Dima Halim Daogah (DHD), Black Widow (BW), United People's Democratic Solidarity (UPDS), Achik National Volunteer Council (ANVC), Karbi Longri North Cachar Hills Liberation Front (KLNLF), Kuki National Organization (KNO) and United Peoples Front (UPF), he said. He further added, “We have appointed two Interlocutors: RS Pandey to talk to the NSCN (IM) and PC Haldar to talk to NDFB (PT), DHD (Nunisa), DHD (J), KLNLF, UPDS and ANVC, besides ULFA [United Liberation Front of Asom].”

3) IDSA take on Oz matters: Linky

With almost eighty per cent of the fourteen million votes cast counted, the Australian Labor Party seems to have secured seventy-two seats; the Liberal-led coalition is likely to hold seventy seats. Interestingly, there is more than a five per cent swing against the Labor and the Greens have emerged as the biggest beneficiaries with more than 3.5 per cent of the swing in their favour. The ruling Australian Labor Party could manage a positive swing in just one state, Tasmania, out of eight states that constitute the Commonwealth of Australia.

Given the fact that voting is mandatory in Australia, it is interesting to look into why Australian voters decided to come up with a split mandate. It is widely believed that more than anything else, the verdict has come against the Australian Labor Party, the reasons for which are not unknown. Just a few months back, Julia Gillard came to power given that former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s popularity was on a downward spiral. The Australian Labor Party was apprehensive that it would not win the next election if Rudd’s moves were not undone. Rudd’s not so appreciated decisions such as on climate change and tax on mining and subsequently leaks about Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s personal life became key factors in Labor’s loss. The Australian Labor Party particularly suffered massively in New South Wales and Queensland where voters were disappointed with the incumbent state governments led by Labor and possibly with the unceremonious ousting of Kevin Rudd from the Prime Minister’s post too. It may be noted here that it was Kevin Rudd who in the 2007 federal elections managed to bring a double digit swing in the Australian Labor Party’s favour in Queensland - his home state. This is in stark contrast to the current poll outcome where there is almost an equal swing away from the Australian Labor Party.

Nevertheless, it must be added that Gillard’s political moves did pay-off and her decision to hold elections barely two months after assuming the Prime Minister’s seat stands vindicated. This is due to the fact that on one hand the Australian Labor Party has not performed as badly as psephologists had predicted, and on the other the Liberals could not cash in on the opportunity and failed to get enough seats to form the government, something Gillard must now be smiling about. It is widely believed that voters preferred to vote for the Greens rather than for the Liberals as an alternative to Labor.

I must add that none of the newspaper reports I studied showed a Lib trumping the Labor. In fact, it was very well believed that Labor may squeak past the Liberal, and that is exactly how it landed. In fact, JG was on a defensive from the first debate onwards and she caught up massively when her party released the manifesto in the last week.

As a consequence, Australia seems to be heading towards a hung parliament. Chances are that a coalition government will be formed by the Australian Labor Party with support of the Green Party (which will represent the people in the Lower House for the first time) and three independent candidates. ‘The Gang of Three’, as they are called, are likely to play a deciding role in Australia’s political future, as the Labor Party led by Julia Gillard is trying hard to piece together a working majority by way of bringing Green members and independents as coalition partners. Labor is likely to succeed given that the Green Party Member of Parliament from Melbourne, Adam Bandt, has refused to line up with the Liberal-led coalition due to ideological positions. One of the independents Bob Katter, an ex- National Party of Australia member, is also likely to align with Labor rather than with the Liberals owing to his feuds with Tony Abbott and his coalition partners.

Coalition politics is an old though rare phenomenon in politics ‘Down Under’. The last time Australia faced a coalition government was in 1940 when Robert Menzies’ United Australia Party had defeated the John Curtin-led Australian Labor Party and formed a coalition government with the support of Country Party and two independents. Australia has not witnessed such a situation in the last seventy years. The possibility of the Labor-led coalition coming to power is likely to bring along a shift from the centre to the left and that will have a remarkable impact on the way Australia will be seen in coming months. Issues such as climate change, carbon emissions and nuclear non-proliferation will gain prominence, perhaps even the centre stage.

This is hard to believe. Nuke bashing, followup to the Kyoto protocol, etc. are order of the day in Oz politics with highly divergent views even within the ALP. It is hard to expect that suddenly these issues are going to gain prominence.

For India, the unfolding scenario might lead to a long term deadlock on the sourcing of Yellowcake from Australia. However, with the effective presence of the Greens, India-Australia cooperation on renewable energy and clean energy technology could further shape up to yield benefits for India. How stable or unstable the government will be is something that only time will tell. One thing, however, is certain; and that is the likelihood of political and ideological compromises the coalition members will have to make. A ‘Labor government with Independent-Green characteristics’ will have an impact on the government’s style of functioning and might lead to changes in the very core of Australia’s domestic and foreign policy orientations.

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3 Comments:

At August 29, 2010 at 5:58 PM , Anonymous Al said...

http://news.rediff.com/report/2010/aug/29/nanded-rti-activist-who-exposed-scam-found-dead.htm

Another citizen who used RTI to expose corruption is killed.

Murderous vermin, the entire lot of the Indian political class. Disgusting scumbags will kill anyone out to expose their criminality.

 
At August 29, 2010 at 5:59 PM , Anonymous Al said...

The criminals in Indian politics need to be taken out using unconstitutional methods, since these vermin control the constitution as criminals. There is no other option.

 
At August 30, 2010 at 7:49 PM , Anonymous Al said...

This asshole Sonia Gandhi and her bootlickers in the NAC are really pushing it -- the list of the vermin that the goddamn whore Sonia Gandhi has selected is a list of anti-nationals.

Since when do Anti-nationals create national policy? Sonia Gandhi, as head of the NAC, is truly a despicable slimy asshole of the worst sort.

No one has died yet to make that asshole the Queen of India, She and her bootlicking sycophants need to remember that if they think they can
use anti-national scumbags like Harsh Mander to create policy. The lowlives in the Congress Party are REALLY pushing it with such behaviour, which comes soon after using the CBI for political ends in Gujarat. This cannot stand.




"Ram Puniyani, who has opposed the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru.

Apart from Subramanium, the drafting committee includes Teesta Setalvad, Maja Daruwala, Najmi Waziri, P I Jose, Prasad Sirivella, Usha Ramanathan and Vrinda Grover. Farah Naqvi and Harsh Mander are the conveners of the drafting committee and joint conveners of the advisory group.

The advisory group includes Abusaleh Shariff , Asgar Ali Engineer, Gagan Sethi, H S Phoolka, John Dayal, Justice Hosbet Suresh, Kamal Faruqui, Manzoor Alam, Maulana Niaz Farooqui, Ram Puniyani, Rooprekha Verma, Samar Singh, Saumya Uma, Shabnam Hashmi, Sister Mary Scaria, Sukhdeo Thorat, Syed Shahabuddin, Uma Chakravarty, Upendra Baxi and NAC members Aruna Roy, Narendra Jadhav and Anu Aga. "

 

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