James and the Giant Peach - Till March 18, 2017

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By A Correspondent

Roald Dahl’s James and the Giant Peach by the Oscar/Tony/Emmy-nominated and 2017 Golden Globe Award-winning songwriting team of Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (Edges, A Christmas Story the Musical, La La Land). This rollicking musical version of the beloved children’s classic returns to YPT due to overwhelming demand after a sold-out run in 2014.

Directed by Nina Lee Aquino. Featuring: Bruce Dow, Amir Haidar, Shruti Kothari, Amy Lee, Robert Markus, Matthew Nethersole, Amaka Umeh, Jennifer Villaverde.

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A Wish For Peace

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By Ravi Nitesh

Despite being globally connected over internet, an experience of visiting the other side is still a dream for an ordinary Indian and Pakistani. Internet can obviously provide much knowledge and can help in strengthening bond through sharing talks and laughs, emotions but relaxing visa formalities, starting tourist visas may help people in smelling the soil, touching the shrines and temples and realizing a dream through their own eyes. It may not only help in bringing future revenues to governments, instead it would be a linkage of believing in each other and walking on the path of cordial relations together and forever.

Read full article at:
http://www.countercurrents.org/2017/02/13/a-wish-for-peace/

Is This the Most Dangerous Place on Earth?

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By David Macaray

Many observers—including such disparate voices as Zbigniew Brzezinski, Noam Chomsky, Hillary Clinton, Thomas Friedman, and Pope Francis—have alluded to the North Indian province of Kashmir (and the surrounding area) as “the most dangerous place on earth.”

As extravagant and melodramatic as that statement may seem, the case can be made for it. I once lived in Punjab, India, and traveled to parts of Kashmir. Even then, relations between India and Pakistan were unbelievably poisonous. Indeed, that entire northwest region is still so dangerously unstable, it’s a miracle nothing catastrophic has happened.

Read the full article at:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-macaray/is-this-the-most-dangerou_b_14716710.html

India Puts Record 104 Satellites into Orbit

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Phys.org

India successfully put a record 104 satellites from a single rocket into orbit on Wednesday in the latest triumph for its famously frugal space programme.

Celebrations erupted among scientists at the southern spaceport of Sriharikota as the head of India's Space Research Organisation (ISRO) announced all the satellites had been ejected as planned.

"My hearty congratulations to the ISRO team for this success," the agency's director Kiran Kumar told those gathered in an observatory to track the progress of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV).

Read full article at:
http://international-perspectives.net/index.php/south-asia/54-india-puts-record-104-satellites-into-orbit

Indian Surgeons Successfully Implant 3D Printed Vertebrae

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By IMT News Desk

The team of doctors was led by Dr V Anand Naik, senior consultant, spine surgery, Bone & Joint Institute at Medanta – The Medicity, Gurugram where the damaged vertebrae was replaced with a 3D printed titanium vertebrae to bridge the gap between the first and fourth cervical vertebrae.

As a pending history of infertility, the patient suffered tuberculosis due to high intake of steroid (by quakes) which lowered her immunity to a level where the patient developed TB at 10 different vertebrae in the spine.

Read full article at:
http://international-perspectives.net/index.php/south-asia/53-indian-surgeons-successfully-implant-3d-printed-vertebrae

Congress Striving for Opposition Unity under Rahul Gandhi

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PTI Report

Congress is striving for uniting the opposition on the issue of Rahul Gandhi's charges of "personal corruption" against the Prime Minister and plans are afoot for a joint press conference by its President Sonia Gandhi and other opposition leaders on December 27.

While there is no formal word from Congress about the initiative or the press conference, reports from Kolkata said West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee will be attending a joint opposition meeting on December 27. She is scheduled to arrive in New Delhi tomorrow.

Leaders of Left parties said they have been approached by Congress but are not aware of the details. They also remained non-committal about their participation in the meeting.

Read full article at:
http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/congress-striving-for-opposition-unity-on-rahul-gandhis-corruption-charges-against-pm-modi-1641728

A Bizarre Spin on the Spinning Wheel

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By Manash Firaq Bhattacharjee

The charkha in Gandhi’s hands stands for a lot more than the act of spinning. Featuring Narendra Modi on the 2017 khadi calendar is a dangerous misappropriation.

The prime minister featuring prominently in the traditional spinning pose of Mahatma Gandhi in the 2017 wall calendar and table diary published by the Khadi Village Industries Commission is the post-truth event of the year. The image is bewildering not because of any sentimental reasons, but for historical, political and ethical reasons associated with Gandhi and the spinning wheel. It is necessary to carve out those reasons sharply in an era where political, cultural and economic institutions are bent upon inventing meanings that ring hollow and lend themselves to dangerous misappropriation.

Read full article at:
https://thewire.in/99461/gandhi-modi-spinning-wheel-charkha/

Digital India: Budget Fails To Address The ‘Sinful Blade Tax’

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By Prof Ranjit Goswami

The Union Budget for the financial year 2017-18, presented on 1st February 2017 by India’s Finance Minister, again failed to provide what was necessary and essential, for a digital India roadmap – that of giving India’s telcos their due infrastructure status with financial benefits – as has been enjoyed by India’s power sector for long. More importantly, it failed to address the ‘sinful blade tax’, that’s being continued. In the end, it is the consumers, poor and rich who pay that near 30% taxed levied on telecom players. Arun Jaitley, to deliver the campaign of Prime Minister Modi, could have been a little more generous here – assuming ‘digital India’ is not being used as merely another cheap political slogan of this government.

Read full article at:
http://www.countercurrents.org/2017/02/08/digital-india-budget-fails-to-address-the-sinful-blade-tax/

Modi Government’s Budget Has Nothing For The Students

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By Sunand

Let us give some figures at this juncture. While the fiscal deficit for the financial year 2016-17 was 3.2% of GDP, in the same year the tax forgone was a massive 3.18 lakh crore that is equal to 2.1% of the GDP. The social sector spending including that on education can be increased by reducing the concessions to the corporates and big businesses. The fact that government hasn’t done so is only a pointer of its priorities.

This year’s union budget has been presented in the backdrop of intensified economic crisis due to the disastrous demonetization, which was nothing but a ploy to increase the liquidity in the banks that were on the brink of collapse due to the massively piled NPAs by the big businesses. The economic survey as well the budget speech was an exercise in self-deception, which was not ready to come to terms with this concrete reality.

Read full article at:
http://www.countercurrents.org/2017/02/03/modi-governments-budget-has-nothing-for-the-students

Attack on Idea of University Continues…

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By Rohin Kumar

Amartya Sen recently during his book launch ‘Collective Choice and Social Wefare’ very aptly pointed out, “India does not have world class universities and the climate of fear (in Indian Universities) is detrimental to Indian Democracy.”

Sen’s statement comes at a time when Indian Universities are under threat to freedom of speech and expression. Coincidently, noble laureate Sen spoke about universities on the day when Ramjas College, a University of Delhi college witnessed violent protest where students, teachers and journalists were badly beaten and harassed.

Read full article at:
http://www.countercurrents.org/2017/02/25/attack-on-idea-of-university-continues/

Meghalaya: Dramatic Gains, Lingering Dangers

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By Giriraj Bhattacharjee
Research Assistant, Institute for Conflict Management

On February 25, 2017, a Police team that included newly constituted Special Force (SF)-10 commandos, in an encounter, killed the ‘commander-in-chief’ of the now-disbanded United Achik Liberation Army (UALA), Singbirth N. Marak aka Norok. X. Momin, at a hideout located inside a forest near Thapa Matronggre village in North Garo Hills District. Marak, along with other cadres of the UALA had surrendered before the Meghalaya Government on June 9, 2016, and had started living a ‘normal life’ after the group was disbanded.

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JULY 2018

Vol. 12 - No. 12










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