Tuesday, 22 December 2009

WTF news: Religious discrimination : India second

Today's Times of India carried this article on religious discrimination
The study titled `Global Restrictions on Religion' took into account the situation in as many as 198 countries, North Korea being the only notable exception, to derive the conclusion. India was just below Iraq and well above countries like Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan when it came to social hostility in the country. Pakistan is at the third place right below India.

The study, which claims to cover 99.5% of the world population, deals with restrictions imposed on religion not just by social groups and individuals but also by the government. Even in the case of government induced restrictions, India fares badly with its position in the top 40 countries out of the 198 mentioned.
I find this very hard to believe. WTF, indeed.

Pakistan incursions at the border.

The Indian express reports:

BSF foiled major infiltration bids by militants to cross into Indian territory as Pakistani troops fired at two forward posts in the Samba sector in the wee hours on Tuesday, in the fifth case of ceasefire violation within a week.
The same article also says

There have been 28 incidents of such ceasefire violations till November 25 by Pakistan along the Line of Control.

During the last four years there have been 129 incidents of ground ceasefire and 43 air space violations by Pakistan.

Why is the Indian government not raising this issue with Pakistan?

With the Defence minister A K Antony stating that India has withdrawn 30,000 troops from Kashmir, wouldn't such incursions prompt the ministry to rush back troops? Is the think tank across the border so stupid?

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Yet another investigating agency

The National Investigating Agency (NIA), formed in 2008 to deal with pan-India crimes and concentrating mainly on terror-related cases, has filed its first chargesheet in the state against six persons accused of procuring and supplying counterfeit currency for terrorist activities. The agency now awaits the setting up of a special court to conduct the trial, which is expected next month.

The NIA has now filed a 1000 page chargesheet and, as per this article, is now awaiting the setting up of a special court!

The more some things change, the more it remains the same!

"Cost of living" index replaces "calorie intake" index to calculate India's poor

A committee headed by economist Suresh Tendulkar critically examined the old “Dandekar-Rath” poverty-line formula, drawn up in 1971. That formula looked exclusively at the calorie content of an Indian’s diet; and, if it was lower than 2250 calories per person per day (an arbitrary figure), placed that person below the poverty line. Remember: this was before the green revolution, well before liberalisation. The committee recommended scrapping the focus on calorie intake alone; it should be replaced, according to the report, by a cost-of-living index that took into account other expenditure.

The number of poor people in India in 2004-2005 were 27.5% by the calorie intake calculation. Now that figure has been revised to 37.2%. And that is good news.

Ms. Clinton acknowledges Pak as a training centre for terrorists?

"We know that much of the training and the direction for terrorists comes from Pakistan and the border area with Afghanistan," Clinton told reporters at the Foggy Bottom headquarters of the State Department.

"One of the reasons why President Obama made the decision which he announced last week with respect to our strategy going forward is because we continue to see a syndicate of terrorism that al-Qaida is, in effect, the head of that is not only an aspirational or ideological head, but providing funding and training and equipping and operational direction to a number of terrorist groups," Clinton said.

"And therefore, we will remain very vigilant at home," she said.

Clinton also expressed concern over "a series of arrests". However, the article only mentions Headley. Who are the others?