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Tuesday, March 21, 2006

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Business and Economy

Democracy, Politics and Judiciary

  • A trial court jailed two Britons for 6 years rigorous imprisonment (RI) for abusing children in a Mumbai children shelter. Duncan Grant and Alan Water, former British ex-Navy commandos founded a shelter for orphaned boys in Mumbai in 1995. On October 24, 2001, a non-Government Organization filed a police complaint accusing the two of abusing boys. Grant & Waters skipped the country to Tanzania where the started the whole racket again and were accused of molesting children there. They escaped justice once more and ran to the United States. In a landmark co-operation between India and the US, the two men were deported to India in 2005. The two pedophiles were also ordered to pay GBP 20,000 each as compensation to the victims. The court also found their Indian manager, William Michael D’Souza guilty of abetting the crimes and criminally assaulting the boys and sentenced him to 3 years RI.

Environment, Health and Education
  • As bird flu culling continues in Jalgaon district, all suspected human cases have tested negative but more human sickness and strange bird death have been reported in Jharkhand, Uttaranchal, and Aligarh. The Federal Government is evaluating present stocks of bird virus drugs of 600,000 vials and is considering increasing stock levels. Interestingly, Jalgoan itself has only 5000 vials available to it. In the meanwhile, poultry producers are demanding more testing centers in addition to the National Institute of Virology in Bhopal.

  • Contingency plans to check Bird Flu  

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Terrorism, Defense, Security and Science & Technology
  • In a major breakthrough, police arrested Babbar Khalsa (BK) India Chief Paramjit Singh Bheora and two accomplices along with a sizeable cache of arms outside New Delhi. Bheora and his accomplices were on their way with 4 kilograms of RDX, 3 detonators, a remote control device, wireless set, 3 pistols and 39 live cartridges to set up a hideout and instigate terrorist activities. Bheora assumed leadership of Indian operations after Jagtar Singh was captured last year. Both Singh and Bheora were involved in the assassination of formed Punjab Chief Minister Beant Singh and several terrorist incidents in Punjab. BK worldwide leader Whadwa Singh lives in Pakistan and directs his US chief Harjeet Singh Gill to control terrorists operations in India. Most terrorists based in Punjab have been either killed in action or captured because of actionable intelligence from terrorism-weary civilians.

  • An Indian trial formally charged Abu Salem for conspiring and bombing Mumbai in 1993 resulting in the death of 250 innocent civilians. Salem and his associate acted on the orders of most wanted man in India, Dawood Ibrahim who is widely believed to live in Pakistan. Salem had originally confessed to his role and implicated actor Sanjay Dutt who is son of late Member of Parliament Congressman Sunil Dutt. He has later retracted his confession.

  • Para-Military Forces to Guard Trains  
    After the latest incident when Naxal terrorists hijacked a train for several hours, the Home Ministry has proposed to the Railways Ministry to seek paramilitary guards to guard trains going through forested and Naxal-infested areas. <More>

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  • The Indo-US civilian nuclear deal seemed to gain ground in the US Senate as Senator Richard Lugar, who heads the powerful Foreign Relations Committee spoke out in support of the deal. He said, “a majority of the members of the Senate are probably going to come down on the side of this piece of legislation.” He said there were still some lingering concerns although India’s political and economic clout, its democratic credentials, and strategic compatibility with the US outweigh India’s nuclear bomb history. However, he suggested that India was compelled into that situation by a big nuclear neighbor (China) and a more erratic neighbor (Pakistan). Lugar, who has been long associated with non-proliferation, defense, and foreign policy issues agreed with the George Bush assessment that India deserved the accord because of its clean non-proliferation accord.

  • Indo-US Civilian Nuclear Deal in US Congress 

Hot Topics
Featured Analyses
National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme : Making Panchayat Raj Institutions Effective
The Bill on National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme seeks to provide guaranteed employment to one member of every rural household for at least 100 days a year for a minimum wage of Rs.60 per day. Out of 260 million poor people in the country, about 200 million poor people are in rural areas. People in 45% rural India do not get work for six months in a year. 
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South Indian Inscriptions
Ancient Indian dynasties documented their administration, significant developments, grants, and milestones as inscriptions in temples. The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has documented these inscriptions from 1886. These pages contain inscriptions from Pallava, Chola, Pandya, Western Chalukya, Eastern Chalukya, Rashtrakuta, Hoyasala, Vijayanagara, Vishnukundin, Kakatiya, Reddi, Vaidumba, Chinda, Eastern Ganga, Gajapathi, Kalchurya, Qutb-Shahi of Golkonda, and Moghul,  dynasties.

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