Views that never cease

Monthly Archives: April 2014

Punjab: The egalitarian process - Gobind Thukral

Voting in Punjab

Over 70 per cent voters in Punjab have exercised their right to send 13 members of 16th Lok Sabha after braving a gruelling no hold barred two month long election campaign. Except the new political outfit, the Aam Aadmi Party and some left candidates, the contestants  and the political parties employed all possible dirty tricks: money, drugs, muscle power and of course, a good deal of communal dozes to win  their battles. In otherwise murky Indian melodramatic electioneering where communal and caste cleavages decide the results, this time around there was a whiff of fresh air in the form of Aam Aadmi Party, nay an liberating  political movement .  It […]

By Gobind Thukral |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments

Fearing drought - Devinder Sharma


Barely emerging out of the shadows of freak weather, the warning of a weak monsoon threatens to push millions of farmers into dire straits. In the midst of all the noise and muck-slinging that dominates the election campaigns there is bad news on the horizon. No, I am not talking of the possibility of a hung Parliament where the numbers don’t add up for any political front, but the possibility of a post-election scenario wherein the rains fail. With 25 per cent probability of a drought, and slim chances of a bountiful monsoon in the north-western and central regions, dark days stare ahead. Although the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has […]

By Devinder Sharma |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments

How about a Third Front? - Sawraj Singh


As the election process is coming to close, it appears that the BJP-led alliance may fall short of an absolute majority and a third front government, supported by the Congress Party, can also have a chance to come in power. After the Delhi assembly elections, I commented that this scenario could be repeated in the center also. Now, it looks to me that my impression was not totally unrealistic. I happened to be in Delhi when the results of the assembly were declared.  The media was giving the AAP only 2-4 seats and they were certain that the BJP will form the government. However, the AAP surprised everybody and won 28 […]

By Sawraj Singh |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments

Conflict fuels child labour in India - Stella Paul

Child labour

Sumari, a child trafficked from Maoist-affected district Narayanpur cleans the floor instead of going to school. Credit: Stella Paul/IPS. Early in the morning, 14-year-old Sumari Varda puts on her blue school uniform but heads for the village pond to fetch water. “I miss school. I wish I could go back,” she whispers, scared of being heard by her employer. Sumari is from Dhurbeda village, but now lives in another, Bhainsasur, both located in central India’s Chhattisgarh state. She puts on her school uniform to fetch water because it is one of the few pieces of clothing she has. “Some are employed as domestic workers, others are sold to sex traders.” — […]

By Stella Paul |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments

An indictment - Gobind Thukral

Carlotta Gall

The Wrong Enemy: America in Afghanistan, 2001-2014 by Carlotta Gall Journalist Carlotta Gall who has reported for New York Times from Afghanistan and Pakistan for almost the entire duration of the American invasion and occupation, since 9/11 has no kind words for that super power. In her highly readable book, The Wrong Enemy: America in Afghanistan, 2001-2014, she has not documented otherwise well known to the intelligence circles, but has shown courage to speak truth to the powers that be. Her concern and empathy for hapless innocent people of Afghanistan is clearly marked though out the book. The US and its NATO partners are leaving Afghanistan after tasting a shameless defeat […]

By Gobind Thukral |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments

India finds fishy ways to fight malaria - Stella Paul


Children in India’s southern city Mangalore promote demonstrations of guppy fish feeding on mosquito eggs. Credit: Stella Paul/IPS. MANGALORE – Thirteen-year-old Sampreeth Monteiro’s neighbours are suddenly taking his advice seriously. “Buy a Guppy fish, it will eat all the mosquito eggs in your house. You will not get malaria again.” Last month the St Aloysius’ high school in Mangalore city of southern India where Monteiro studies, launched a “Guppy movement” – an anti-malaria campaign in collaboration with the Mangalore City Corporation. The campaign aims to control malaria using natural means – such as the Guppy fish. “Buy a Guppy fish; it will eat all the mosquito eggs in your house. […]

By Stella Paul |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments

Wedding detectives come to rescue - Rajwanti Mann

india wedding

The 2001 data on marital status of persons shows that out of population of over one billion in India, 513 millions have reported never married status. This number constitutes 49.8 percent of total population .The married status stays at 45.6 percent. In Haryana the changed economy has created a void between neo elite urban and rural communities silently and unnoticed. Population of Haryana as per census 2011 is 2.53.52billion.The marriage of children remains the matter of concern for parents as well as for society everywhere. Haryana has a dubious distinction of having the worst male female ratio. As per 2o11 census the number of female is 879 per 1000 males […]

By Rajwanti Mann |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments

When not to go to school - Ranjita Biswas

Sulabh International

A new toilet for girl students at a school in Murshidabad district in the eastern Indian state West Bengal. Credit: Sulabh International/IPS. In large parts of rural India, the absence of separate toilets for growing girls is taking a toll on their education. Many are unable to attend school during their menstrual cycle. According to the country’s Annual Status of Education Report in 2011, lack of access to toilets causes girls between 12 and 18 years of age to miss around five days of school every month, or around 50 school days every year. “There is a sharp increase in the dropout rate, mainly among girls, as they move from […]

By Ranjita Biswas |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments

The art of reading - Sonia G Handa


“It is a great thing to start life with a small number of really good books which are your very own.” Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The excitement of going to Punjab Book Centre in Chandigarh as kids, for the Russian picture story books, has stayed with me. The  journey then began, is still continuing and it has gradually  passed  on to my daughter who loves books and has been visiting libraries and book stores with me since she was two years old. What surprises me are  her skills in  weaving stories and  writing small pieces on her school and friends, even a loving letter to her pet dog, Bruno. There […]

By Sonia G Handa |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments

India’s women lose the election - Manipadma Jena

Women lose the elections

A protest against a proposed nuclear plant in the Indian state Gujarat. Women are asking for stronger representation in Parliament to voice their views. Credit: Krishnakant/IPS. “Men just do not want to give up their seats, it’s as simple as that,” says 67-year-old candidate in the Indian election Subhhasini Ali, voicing a gloomy view across women’s groups in India. Ali, a two-time Member of Parliament and key functionary of the All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA), an arm of the Communist Party of India-Marxists (CPI-M), is contesting from Barrackpore, a constituency in the eastern Indian state West Bengal. “This election, we get the feeling that we have lost. Women are […]

By Manipadma Jena |April 30, 2014| Southasiapost | 0 Comments