The Struggle To Get Dalit Voice Into Mainstream Indian Media
By Jeya Rani* - IDN-InDepthNews
Even as you read this whever you are, somewhere in India someone is being killed or raped, humiliated or outraged, just because she or he was born in a lower caste (known as Dalit).
The ‘not so changing’ statistics of National Crime Records Bureau say that a Dalit is assaulted every two hours in India. At least three Dalit women are raped every 24 hours. Two Dalits are killed every 24 hours. Two Dalit houses are burnt down.
There is no dearth of breaking news or good TRP ratings in reporting atrocities against Dalits across India. But, why are these stories not getting the coverage it deserves in the country often touted as the world’s biggest democracy?.
India Second Largest Arms Purchaser After Saudi Arabia
As India embarks on a massive modernisation plan for its defence forces, it has emerged as the second largest purchaser of arms among developing nations after Saudi Arabia, a latest Congressional report has said.
Between 2008 and 2015, India purchased defence equipment worth $34 billion, which is a distant second after Saudi Arabia's $93.5 billion, said the report 'Conventional Arms Transfers to Developing Nations 2008-2015' released by Congressional Research Service (CRS).
India In, Pakistan Left Out NSG Membership: New Draft Proposal
In a big diplomatic win for New Delhi, a draft proposal for accepting new members into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) paves way for India`s entry into the clud but leaves out Pakistan, according to a US-based arms control organisation.
Last week, the US media reported that former NSG chairman Rafael Mariano Grossi had prepared a two-page document, explaining how a non-NPT state, like India and Pakistan, could join the group.
NSG Membership Proposal Would Undermine Nonproliferation
By Daryl G. Kimball – Arms Control Association
Six years ago, U.S. President Barack Obama pledged his support for India’s entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), the nuclear technology control organization established in 1975 in response to India’s first nuclear weapon test blast, which used plutonium produced with nuclear technology from Canada and the United States.
According the official NSG website, India’s 1974 test explosion “demonstrated that peaceful nuclear technology transferred for peaceful purposes could be misused.”
PM Narendra Modi Ranked Among World's Ten
Most Powerful People by Forbes
By Zee Media Bureau
Days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi won the online reader's poll for Time 'Person of the Year 2016', he was ranked among the top 10 most powerful people in the world by Forbes.
The list has been topped by Russian President Vladimir Putin for a fourth straight year and had US President-elect Donald Trump in the second place.
PM Modi ranks 9th on the Forbes list of 74 of the World's Most Powerful People.
Forbes said India's 'populist' PM remains hugely popular in his country of 1.3 billion people.o quote the magazine - "India's populist prime minister remains hugely popular in his country of 1.3 billion people. In November 2016 he unexpectedly announced plans to eliminate India's two largest bank notes in a bid to reduce money laundering and corruption, creating a nationwide frenzy to quickly swap out the bills. Modi has raised his profile as a global leader in recent years during official visits with Barack Obama and Xi Jinping. He has also emerged as a key figure in the international effort to tackle climate change, as planetary warming will deeply affect millions of his country's rural and most vulnerable citizens."
Home Ministry Cancels FCRA Licences of 20,000 NGOs
Fear of unemployment, reduction in aid for poor and marginalised communities grows as Centre continues its clampdown on foreign funding for NGOs.
By Gaurav Vivek Bhatnagar
The Centre has cancelled the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) licences of about 20,000 of 33,000 NGOs after they were found to have allegedly violated various provisions of the Act, thus barring them from receiving any foreign funds.
Earlier this year, in the wake of the crackdown on the Ministry of Home Affairs against certain NGOs in July, Mathew Cherian, chairman of the Voluntary Association Network of India – the largest federation of NGOs in the country – had lamented that the quantum of funding for NGOs had dropped sharply from Rs 13,600 crore in 2013-14 to Rs 7,600 crore in 2014-15 (the figures for 2015-16 were yet to be compiled at the time).
Disclosing Reasons for Demonetisation Will Hurt India, Says RBI
By The Wire Staff
Refusal to disclose reasons for the demonetisation decision does not stand up to legal scrutiny, RTI experts say.
It’s time to call it the Reserved Bank of India.
Fifty days after the board of India’s central bank voted to discontinue all Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes and the prime minister announced the demonetisation of 86% of India’s cash stock, the Reserve Bank of India has said the reasons for the sudden announcement cannot be made public.
In response to a Right to Information request, the RBI refused to disclose the reasons behind the decision to demonetise around Rs. 16 lakh crore of currency in the country, citing Section 8(1)(a) of the Right to Information Act.
The exemption under this section allows a public authority to withhold “Information, [the] disclosure of which would prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security, strategic, scientific or economic interests of the State, relation with foreign state or lead to incitement of an offence.”
Why Are India’s Development Programmes Not Delivering?
By Moin Qazi – Countercurrents
In India, most development programmes for poor have been designed on the assumption that the poor need charities and they cannot afford to pay for the services .This is erroneous and we have witnessed how dollops of free money have stifled their initiatives.
Several studies have revealed that the poor are keen to have access to proper healthcare , education, sanitation and housing .They are willing to pay for the services if they are genuinely useful and are available through hassle free systems. Today the poor are investing their precious savings in private hospitals and private schools. They are also borrowing at heavy rates of interest from private microfinanciers because bank loans, despite being cheaper, are mired in red tapism.
Dangal: A Sociological Review
By Prakash Gupta - Countercurrents
Dangal presents a ‘limited’ version of women empowerment whose protagonist is a patriarch. Namrata Joshi aptly describes this in her Review featured in The Hindu on Thursday. She describes Mahavir of Dangal as “A patriarch who may seem rigid, unbending and dictatorial; whose ways may seem to cause immediate pain and discomfort but ensure a happy future for the daughters (and the nation) in the long run.” But not a ‘patron’ for women empowerment.
After watching the film, I felt that the understanding of ‘women empowerment’ in our society is still limited, empowerment is being ‘equal’ or ‘nearly equal’ to men.
Efforts to Make Hindi To Be Official Language At UN
Popularise the language the world over and attempts are on to make Hindi among the official languages of the United Nations, the government said now.
"The government continues its attempts in popularising Hindi world-wide and for the approval of Hindi as one of the UN official languages.
"In this respect, one significant achievement is the United Nations airing its programmes on the UN Radio web site in the Hindi language also," External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha.
Pakistan’s CPEC Invitation to India Sends Important Gesture
By Liu Zongyi - Global Times *
According to Pakistani media, Amir Riaz, the Pakistan Army's Southern Command chief, on Wednesday invited India to join the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and "share the fruits of future development by shelving anti-Pakistan activities and subversion." Amid escalating tensions between India and Pakistan, Riaz's remarks have drawn wide attention from the Indian media.