Saturday, June 06, 2009

Indians to catch a glimpse of official FIFA World Cup

NEW DELHI: In a first of its kind, the official World Cup football trophy will be on display in India in April next year, it was decided in a meeting on the sidelines of the ongoing 59th FIFA Congress in The Bahamas. ">

For football lovers in India, starved of seeing the national team at the World Cup stage, this could be their first chance to catch a glimpse of the trophy which shows two human figures holding the earth.

In 2004, India had managed to witness a replica of the FIFA World Cup but according to information received from The Bahamas, this time it will be the original trophy visiting the country on April 20-21.

FIFA General Secretary Jerome Valeke and Director of Marketing Thiery Weil along with Amber Steele, Director Marketing of Coca Cola, held a meeting with officials of All India Football Federation -- senior vice-president Subrata Dutta and treasurer Hardev Jadeja -- on the sidelines of the 59th FIFA Congress on Tuesday.

"There it was decided that from September 2009 the trophy will start touring all the 54 African countries before travelling to 32 other nations including India," Dutta said from Paradise Island, The Bahamas.

"The trophy will be on display at the Capital on April 20 before moving to Kolkata the next day. From there it will be flown to Japan," Dutta informed.

South Africa, the hosts of the 2010 World Cup will be its final destination.

All cost for the event in India is likely to be borne by Coca Cola, the official partner of FIFA.

A Coca Cola spokesperson confirmed the official trophy will indeed be on display in India.

"Yes, it will be the real FIFA World Cup which will be on display in India and not the replica," said the spokesperson of the company's India chapter.

Among matters discussed with AIFF officials were ways to promote the event and display the trophy.

According to Dutta, a massive celebration is being planned at the airport when it reaches here. There is likely to be media interactions, dinners and event promotions during the trophy's two-day stay in India.

An opportunity for football lovers to take pictures with the trophy is also being explored.

FIFA's decision to bring the official World Cup trophy to India also shows the importance football's governing body attaches to the country's development in the game as part of its 'Win in India with India' project which has seen FIFA already allocating 10 astroturfs to the country.

The FIFA World Cup is made of 18 carat solid gold and has a base of malachite. The cup, which first came into existence in the 1974 World Cup after Brazil won the Jules Rimet trophy permanently, was designed by Italian Silvio Gazzaniga and weighs 6.175kg.

Source: PTI & TNN

I admire Rahul, he'll have my support whenever he wants to be PM: Sangma

NEW DELHI: Former Lok Sabha speaker Purno Sangma on Friday affirmed his commitment to the basic Congress ideology and expressed his admiration for Rahul Gandhi. With his daughter Agatha now a minister in the Congress-led government, the NCP leader made it clear that he was ready for reconciliation with the Gandhi-Nehru family.

Earlier this week, he along with Agatha had called on Congress president Sonia Gandhi to invite her to a reception for his son Conrad's wedding.

It was an emotive moment since Sangma — rising fast in Congress politics in the early 1990s — had revolted against Sonia questioning her leadership credentials on the basis of her foreign origins. He along with Sharad Pawar and Tariq Anwar had left Congress to start a breakaway faction — Nationalist Congress Party.

"I thought it was time to say, `Let's forget the past'," he said about his visit to 10 Janpath in years. He took the opportunity to apologise for "what happened". Sonia, according to him, reciprocated. "She was gracious enough to say, `Yes, it is time to forget the past'," Sangma told TOI recalling the conversation. Sonia told him that she had no ill-feeling towards him. "I expressed my gratefulness," he said.

Agatha, too, sought her blessings and was moved by Sonia's affection.

With the ghost from the past buried, Sangma sought to make sure that the next generation could move forward without bad memories.

"I am basically wedded to the Congress ideology," he insisted. "NCP ideology is no different from the Congress ideology; I see no reason why Congress and NCP should not work together."

Sangma applauded Rahul for his decision to chuck a ministerial job to concentrate on his party work. "I have a lot of admiration for Rahul; he is not in a hurry, has a long-term policy; he is a Prime Minister in the making," he said.

Sangma said that he would back Rahul whenever the young leader was ready for the top job.

He tried to meet Rahul to invite him to his son's wedding reception. The meeting could not happen since Rahul was busy in Amethi. "But he called me saying sorry," Sangma said.

At 62, the strong man from Meghalaya sees a new innings for himself in national politics. As a member of a UN panel, he travels around the world to talk about democracy and his own experience to the legislators in new democracies. He has been to Trindad, Tobago, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.

"What I have been doing abroad I can do here as well," he said. He has already received requests to train the young MPs.

As for the BJP, he recommends a soul-searching course. "The BJP has to undergo tremendous transformation, they have to become a secular party," Sangma said. He believes the country is moving towards a two-party system with the smaller outfits surrendering their space to the big players.

Source: Bhaskar Roy, TNN

Education antidote to Manipur violence

Imphal, June 5: The Okram Ibobi Singh government has started focusing on education as a tool to usher in not only peace but all-round development in the state. Ibobi Singh has entrusted education minister L. Jayentakumar Singh with the task of overhauling the system of education in the state.

“The faulty education system has led to the chaotic situation in the state in the past 20 to 30 years. We have to change the system and the government has started working on it. Only education can bring peace and all-round development,” Jayentakumar Singh said, distributing awards to meritorious students at Kangla hall today.

The minister distributed awards to students who passed this year’s CHSE examination with flying colours. The awards include a gold medal and cash. Altogether 14 donors and the council instituted the awards. The minister’s action plan includes setting up of model schools and an evaluation of the methods of teaching and examinations.

The government feels that the current system of education has failed to make students responsible citizens.

“The government has sanctioned Rs 2.5 lakh to the Council of Higher Secondary Education Manipur to hold a workshop. It will recheck the whole system and devise a new system so that our students can compete not only at the national level but also at the international level,” the minister said.

The minister said the main idea behind the system was to make the students responsible to ensure that they could contribute to nation building.

“Producing toppers who cannot become responsible citizens and contribute to the nation’s development is meaningless,” he said.

The government has already set up a model school at Elangbam Leikai in Imphal West. One such school is coming up at Serou in Thoubal district.“These model schools are experimental ones. If these are fruitful, we will cover all the government-run schools under the scheme,” he said.

H. Nabachandra Singh, the secretary of the council, said he was planning to hold a workshop after the Class XII compartmental examinations were over.

Nabachandra Singh, who is also the chairman of the council, announced a gold medal each for the toppers of the three streams, science, commerce and arts, from next year.

The minister said he was preparing a proposal for training all teachers, both in government and private schools.

The minister, however, emphasised that the government’s dream could not materialise unless all of those involved in education, including parents, teachers and officials were honest, serious and committed.


Two NREGS women worker killed in mishap

Imphal, June 05 2009: In a tragic accident ,two women have been killed when a mound of dug out earth crumbled upon them this morning. Two other women were also injured. The women were digging a well under NREGS at Sagang Lukhumbi village within the jurisdiction of Kumbi police station.

The women were digging earth to enlarge a well already existing there.

However a chunk of earth mixed with stones suddenly crumbled and fell upon them.

Altogether 50 people including men and women were working at the site.

The deceased victims have been identified as L Wainimnei (57) wife of Sanglarwang and ST Neipi (38) wife of ST Joy.

Those who sustained injuries and admitted at RIMS have been identified as M Momo (23) daughter of Rangneichung and D Chongboi wife of Neithalin.

Source: The Sangai Express

Arnold Schwarzenegger wanted for 'Predators' sequel

London, June 5 (PTI) California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is being pursued by the producers of his super hit film 'Predators' as they want the former action star to reprise his role in a planned sequel to the 1987 hit.

[image from] The 61-year-old actor has been contacted by Robert Rodriguez, who will be producing the film and is awaiting a nod from Schwarzenegger's camp, reported Ace Showbiz quoting the website Movie Hole.

"Robert's camp has just reached out to Arnie's (camp)," the report quoted an insider as saying.

The report also said that Schwarzenegger's representatives have yet to respond to the offer.

The Terminator star's last on-screen outing was in the 2005 movie 'The Kid and I', where he played himself, 'Predators' a extraterrestrial thriller franchise saw the actor play Major Alan Dutch who finishes off the alien predator.

The film was a super hit and inspired many spin offs including films like 'Alien vs Predator' and many comic books and video games. PTI

Producers-multiplexes standoff ends; film releases from Jun 12

Mumbai, June 5 (PTI) The two-month-long standoff between producers and multiplex owners over revenue sharing finally ended today following weeks of close door deliberations between the two parties which continued till the wee hours of this morning.

Producers have decided to commence release of new films from June 12.

Filmmaker Mukesh Bhat who is the convenor of the United Producers and Distributors Forum (UPDF) told PTI that the amicable settlement has been reached and the multiplex owners have agreed to the the producers' demands on revenue sharing, distribution strategy and eradicating accounting discrepancies.

He said a detailed announcement of the agreement to be reached between the two parties will be made on Monday.

Big Cinemas, the multiplex chain promoted by the Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group, was the first to give in to the terms and conditions of the UPDF.

However, they signed the agreement last midnight even though they had verbally agreed to do so on May 29.

Sources in the UPDF said throughout the week, Big Cinemas was trying to convince other multiplex players to come on board and resolve the stand off.

When Big Cinemas officially announced their agreement with the UPDF, other multiplex chains dismissed it, saying that the agreement was in favour of producers and distributors. PTI

'Kill Bill' star David Carradine found dead in Bangkok

Kuala Lumpur, June 5 (PTI) David Carradine, Hollywood actor of 'Kill Bill' fame was found dead in a Bangkok hotel under mysterious circumstances.

The 72-year-old actor who played the title character in Quentin Tarantino's two-part saga 'Kill Bill' was found hanging from a curtain cord in his room in Park Nai Lert Hotel yesterday, Thailand's The Nation newspaper reported.

The star who shot to fame with super hit 70's show 'Kung Fu' was in Bangkok to shoot for his upcoming film 'Stretch'.

He was discovered by a hotel staff hanging naked in the wardrobe with a cord around his neck and genitals prompting speculation that the star died while performing a sexual act on himself which accidentally led to asphyxiation.

However local police has classified it as a case of suicide.

"It looks like a suicide. He was a big man and it would have been difficult for someone to move him in there and kill him in there," Pol Col Somprasong Yentuam, Chief of Lumpini police said.

Police also added that they found no sign of fighting, or intrusion or assaults at the scene.

However star's manager has denied police's suicide theory.

"I can tell you 100 per cent that he would have never committed suicide. He was too full of life," said Tiffany Smith, the star's manager to US magazine People. PTI

Handique to convene N-E CMs’ meet

Agartala: DONER minister BK Handique will convene a meeting of Chief Ministers of Northeastern states to discuss on how to speed up development activities in backward regions. The meeting will be held later this month.

This was conveyed to Tribal Welfare Minister Jitendra Chowdhury, who met the DONER minister in Delhi recently. Talking to media here on Thursday, Chowdhury said that the meeting would be held later this month. The objective of the meeting is to receive suggestions from the Chief Ministers of NE region on how to expedite development process.

Chowdhury claimed that the union minister appreciated Tripura’s performance in terms of implementation of NEC sponsored schemes. He said that the state government would press for implementation of decisions taken in the sectoral meetings on power, road communication, commerce and tourism. Referring to the vision 2020, Chowdhury said that the government would also urge the Centre to ensure proper implementation of the vision documents. During the meeting with union minister, Chowdhury also took up the vexed Reang refugee problem. In reply, Handique said this is a challenge for the UPA government.

"The Centre wants to find an amicable and lasting solution to the problem", the union minister assured the Tribal Welfare minister. Chowdhury pointed out that the state government wants the matter shall be sorted out at the political level.

Sharing sympathy towards the displaced Reang people, Mr. Handique said that he would discuss the issue with the Mizoram Chief Minister to put an end to the vexed refugee problem. On behalf of the state, Mr. Chowdhury also submitted a project for installation of Technical Specify Rubber (TSR) at Takmacherra rubber processing centre to the union minister.


100 days, billion hopes: The Agenda of the UPA

New Delhi, June 4 (Agencies): President Pratibha Patil on Thursday outlined the priorities of the new Government for the next 100 days. Prominent among them being a slew of women development plans including the long-pending Women Reservation Bill. Ensuring accountability in implementation of public welfare schemes, including the NREGA is also on top of the agenda.

President Pratibha Patil walks during a official welcoming ceremony at the presidential residence in Mexico City in this April 17, 2008 file photo.India's president said that the new government would revive economic growth and help millions of poor with higher spending and expansion of social programmes, despite fears of a growing fiscal gap. Outlining the new Congress-led government's policies after a resounding election win in May, Pratibha Patil said minority stakes in state-run firms would be sold in a move that could help fund spending.

The government will also take steps to encourage foreign investment inflows, list shares of state-run firms and infuse more capital in banks to help boost economic growth which is at a six-year low. "The current financial year is expected to see a slowing down of growth on account of the global recession," Patil said in an address to parliament. "Our immediate priority must be to focus on management of the economy that will counter the effect of the global slowdown," she added."

The main BSE share index extended early losses to 1.8 percent just after the speech, but climbed to finish up 0.93 percent at its highest close in nine months, bolstered by hopes the government would revive growth by boosting investment and pushing reforms. "Some signs of new policy measures to lift growth are there, but meeting the expectations of the market would be difficult for the government," said K.K. Mital, head of portfolio management services at Globe Capital.

Patil said the government would expand programmes such as the rural job scheme and enact a food security law to guarantee cheap grains for poor families, in a nod to millions of poor Indians that helped the Congress party to election victory in May. "My government will ensure that the growth process is not only accelerated but also made socially and regionally more inclusive and equitable," Patil said.

10 areas of priority for UPA govt

1. Internal security and preservation of communal harmony
2. Stepping up of economic growth in agriculture manufacturing and services
3. Consolidation of the existing flagship programmes for employment, education, health, rural infrastructure, urban renewal and introduction of new flagship programmes for food security and skill development
4. Concerted action for the welfare of women, youth, children, other backward classes, scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, minorities, the differently-abled and the elderly along with strengthened and social protection
5. Governance reform
6. Creation and modernisation of infrastructure and capacity addition in key sectors
7. Prudent fiscal management
8. Energy security and environment protection
9. Constructive and creative engagement with the world
10. Promotion of a culture of enterprise and innovation

Growth, internal security key priorities: President


Double blow to DHD (J) Jewel held, top aide killed

Guwahati, Jun 5: The Jewel Garlosa faction of the Dima Haolam Daogah (DHD), a Dimasa tribe based militant outfit, which held the North Cachar Hills district of Assam to ransom, has suffered a double blow with the arrest of its self-styled “commander-in-chief” Jewel Gorlosa and killing of one of its top functionaries Frankie Dimasa by police.

[Jewel Garlosa of the DHD-File photo courtesy Assam Tribune] Reports said a combined force of Assam Police and Karnataka Police arrested Gorlosa along with two of his aides Partha Nunisa and Samir Dimasa from a hotel in Bangalore on Wednesday.

According to official sources, DIG (Central-West Range) GP Singh led the police team.
Acting on intelligence inputs, a four-member team of Assam Police was camping in the Karnataka capital for the past four days to nab Garlosa, the sources said.

The team was to have moved Court for a transit remand to bring Garlosa to Guwahati on Friday, the sources added.

Hours after Gorlosa’s arrest, police gunned down the foreign secretary of the outfit, Frankie Dimasa, in an encounter in Guwahati in the wee hours of Thursday.

“Acting on a tip off that some militants were taking shelter on the hilltop at Bishnupur, we launched an operation early in the morning and in the resultant encounter, Frankie Dimasa was killed,” ASP Debojit Deuri said. He added that at least two other militants managed to escape under the cover of darkness.

“The arrest of the Black Widow chief and killing of its foreign secretary is a major achievement for us,” said IGP (Law and Order) B Mahanta.

It may be mentioned that the Assam Police intensified their operations against militants, in particular the Black Widow, ever since the chief of North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council, Mohit Hojai was arrested and handed over to the National Investigating Agency for his alleged involvement with insurgent groups, mainly Black Widow.

The Black Widow, formed in 2002, is a breakaway faction of the DHD, led by Dilip Nunisa. The DHD has been in a ceasefire with the Government for the past few years.

Both the factions are demanding a separate State of Dimaraji comprising Dimasa dominated areas in NC Hills, Karbi Anglong, Cachar, parts of Nagaon district in Assam, besides Dimapur and Dhansiripar in Nagaland.

The Black Widow unleashed a reign of terror in NC Hills in the past few months. Work for two Central projects – East-West Corridor and railway gauge conversion – has been stalled while train services on Lumding-Badarpur route has been suspended for an indefinite period in the wake of the attacks by the Black Widow.

Source: Newmai News Network/TSE

Friday, June 05, 2009

Manipur Hill council elections

Imphal, June 04 2009: With a view to decentrallized power to the hill districts of Manipur, the Indiggenous Democratic Front (IDF) has scheduled the election campaign dates for the five hill districts of the state for the elections to the Autonomous District Council (ADC).

On Thursday the IDF informed, that the front would begin its campaign for decentralisation of powers to the hill districts of the state and invited opinions, suggestions and advice from the public in regard to holding elections to the AQCs under the prevailing Act of 1971 .

Asserting further the main aim and objective of the IDF was to evolve an alternative democratic system of governance based on indigenous democracy which best benefits the indigenous people living in Manipur.

Meanwhile, it scheduled the campaign kicked offs for the five hill districts as follows - Senapati district on June 19, Churachandpur on June 20, Tamenglong on June 22, Chandel on June 24, Sadar Hills and Ukhrul districts on June 26 and 27.

Source: Hueiyen News Service /

Air France AF 447 - 15 minutes to death

ICT by John Le Fevre | Passengers and crew of doomed Air France Flight AF447 may have endured a terrorizing last 15 minutes of life according to electronic messages sent by the aircraft. Details of the automatically generated warning system messages were published today in the Sao Paulo newspaper, le Jornal da Tarde and the British Telegraph newspaper, allegedly obtained from an Air France source.

The data shows the Airbus A300-200 series was flying below the optimal speed for entering turbulent weather conditions before a series of major electronic breakdowns occurred.

According to the Telegraph:

At 3.10am (BST), the pilot was presented with a series of major failures over a four-minute period before catastrophe struck.

At this time, the automatic pilot was disconnected – either by the pilot or by the plane’s inbuilt security system, which flips to manual after detecting a serious error.

At the same moment, another message indicates that the “fly-by-wire” electronic flight system which controls the wing and tail flaps shifted to “alternative law” – an emergency backup system engaged after multiple electricity failures. This system enables the plane to continue functioning on minimum energy but reduces flight stability. An alarm would have sounded to alert the cabin crew to this.

Two minutes later, another message indicates that two essential computers providing vital information on altitude, speed and flight direction ceased functioning correctly.

Two new messages at 3.13am report electricity breakdowns in the principal and auxiliary flight computers.

At 3.14am, a final message reads “cabin in vertical speed”, suggesting a sudden loss of cabin pressure, either the cause or the consequence of the plane breaking up in mid-air.

The suggestion that the pilot gradually lost control of the plane appears to counter reports that the plane exploded in mid-air.

The mid-air explosion theory was given more weight today after a Spanish pilot in the vicinity at the time reported seeing an “intense white flash”.

“Suddenly we saw in the distance a strong and intense flash of white light, followed by a downward, vertical trajectory which broke up into six segments,” the chief pilot of an Air Comet plane from Lima to Madrid told the Spanish newspaper, El Pais.

Some experts have supported the theory that the plane exploded, given the wide area where debris has been found.

However, Brazil’s defense minister, Nelson Jobim, said an explosion was “improbable” given the 13-mile (21km) trail of kerosene spotted on the sea. “If we have fuel slicks, it’s because it didn’t burn,” he said.

Air France flight AF447 departed Brazil’s Airport do Galeao in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday at 2230 GMT for Paris and was last heard from flying at an altitude of 10,600 meters (35,000 feet) at 0133 GMT Monday.

The relatively new Airbus A300-200 jetliner was carrying 126 men, 82 women, seven children and a baby – plus a highly experienced 12-person crew.

Source: ThaIndian

Manipur to open Corpus fund for toppers

IMPHAL, Jun 4: To provide grant and incentive to schools as well as toppers of class X and XII examinations conducted respectively by the Board of Secondary Education, Manipur and Council of Higher Secondary Education, Manipur, the State Government has taken up steps to open a corpus fund of Rs 18 crores.

An official source said that for opening the corpus fund, a proposal would be placed before the Education Department to provide Rs 18 crore.

The amount would be deposited in the bank and the interest accrued would be utilised for giving grant and incentive to the toppers of class X and XII every year as well as schools which produce meritorious stu-dents.

Earlier the SPF Cabinet during a meeting on January 12 last had also taken a similar decision on extending grant and incentives to schools producing meritorious students. Subsequent to the Cabinet decision, Education Department issued an order on February 10 last.

In accordance with the said order, starting from this year students scoring 75 and above percentage in class X and XII are to be given a one time incentive amount Rs 5,000 each and Rs 3000 each to those who score 60 to below 75 percentage. Of this amount, Rs 1000 is to be given to the school management and another Rs 1000 to be given to the teacher concerned and the rest to be received by the student topper.

The order had also stated that along with selecting 300 students who score highest marks in class X and XII examination, each of the highest scorer in class X would be given a scholarship amount of Rs 6000 each for two years while the scholarship amount for the highest scorers of class XII would be Rs 12,000 each for three years.

Although the Government has started discussing the matter related to extension of these benefits to the meritorious students from this year as promised in the said order, it is yet to issue any instruction on selection of the highest scorers nor worked out anything on the financial amount to be required, the source added.


NSCN (K) willing to hold talks with the Indian govt

New Delhi, June 3 (ANI): Shedding a decade long inhibition and reservation not to hold talks with the Government of India, National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Khaplang) or NSCN (K) has expressed willingness to hold talks with the government. “NSCN (K) is ready for dialogue provided a formal invitation is sent to us”, said Kughalu Mulatonu, emissary to the Collective leadership of the Khaplang faction.

For long the group has been opposed to the talks with the government of India on the ground that the centre is engaging the rival faction NSCN (IM) for talks. Isac -Muivah faction is still in talks with the government but this change of heart in the Khaplang faction is due to a “deadlock” in discussion between the NSCN (IM) and the centre. “Since IM can’t solve the problem and talks have come to a deadlock”, that’s why we are willing to come forward to carry on talks, said Mulatonu who is in the national capital to explore the option for talks.

Mulatonu accuses NSCN (IM) leadership of being “not serious” in solving the problem of Nagas. “Muivah is in Europe and Isac Chisi Swu is in China. If they are serious then they should be amidst the Naga people”, argues Mulatonu. He also blames IM leadership of being a stooge in the hands of the Indian government and claims that recently Muivah was in Somalia at the behest of the government, a claim denied by the NSCN (IM) when contacted.

When asked how hopeful NSCN (K) is to get invitation for talks from the government Mulatonu doesn’t sound so confident. He however said that “if the Indian government is eager to solve the Naga problem then there should not be any problem in getting invitation”. Regarding the agenda of the talks the NSCN(K) emissary says that nothing is fixed so far but we will talk with an “open mind” and the contour of talks would be decided by the Khaplang, the President of NSCN(K) and Kitovi, the Prime Minister of Nagaland government in exile.

Since 1997 both the factions have been under ceasefire agreement with the Government of India. NSCN (IM) have been holding talks with the Indian government and so far more than fifty rounds of talks have been held in the last one decade but no result has been found out yet. (ANI)

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Manipur to evict student bodies from institutions

IMPHAL, June 3 – Even as the student community has taken a strong stance against the detention of 13 student leaders following the killing of Professor Md Islamuddin of Manipur University, the State Government reportedly directed the eviction of all offices of NGOs and student organisations from campus of government offices and government-run educational institutions.

The ruling Secular Progressive Front Ministry took a decision to this effect during a Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh chaired emergency Cabinet meeting on Monday, official sources said.

Sources said the Cabinet meeting decided to serve notices to all concerned to shift the offices of student unions and NGOs from Government institutions within 15 days.

Meanwhile, five of the detained students were arrested under National Security Act while the remaining eight students were released on bail after producing them before the court of Additional Judicial Magistrate here on Tuesday.

Earlier, the Democratic Students Alliance of Manipur has warned to call a 120-hour general strike if the authority failed to release the arrested students without any condition. Meanwhile, the police has warned the school authorities against allowing their students to organise protest demonstrations or taking out rallies.

Source: The Assam Tribune

Mizoram resents non-representation in Union Cabinet

AIZAWL, June 3 – Cross- sections of the Mizo people have expressed dismay at the absence of a representative from the State in the Union Ministry while both MPs from neighbouring Meghalaya were inducted as Union Ministers.

Opposition Mizo National Front (MNF) leader M C Lalrinthanga has accused State Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla of being powerless to influence the UPA and the AICC leadership to include C L Ruala, the lone Lok Sabha member from the State, in the Union Ministry.

Lallianchhunga, a lecturer of political science in Mizoram University, lamented that the Congress leadership in Delhi failed to appreciate the huge mandate received by the party from the people of Mizoram in the December State Assembly polls and the recent Parliamentary polls. Dr C Silvera, who was a Minister of State during the Narasimha Rao regime, was the first and only representation Mizoram ever has till date, Lallianchhunga said. – PTI

Alfa and Omega of LTTE: Bangziak a Tamil Tiger-te Lohsam Ahia?

Gam 54 a kithuzaktuahna munpi nei, zalen gam khat dana ana kivaihawm: army, airforce, navy, police, court, bank, post office, radio leh TV station tuam nei, galvan toh kithuam mi 18,000-te’n humpinelkai banga 15,000 sq km ana touphah, LTTE-te sukmang a aom un mi tamtak lunggel ah LTTE nunga Tamil-te maban di lung opkaina liantak piangsak hi.

Sri Lanka in Prabakaran leh anuaia lamkai lian teng athah khit a galzou akichih pen galzohna taktak ahi na diai? Chih mi tamtak dokna ahi. LTTE gumpawl in Sri Lanka galzohna pen ahawmguak lel ahi achi uhi. Atup uh Tamil Eelam(Tamil Gam) amuh louh tawp ua zong Sinhala-te toh tan kikim piak ahih kei uleh galdouna bei di’n agintat huai kei hi. Galzohna puanlap khai President Rajapaksa solkal in Tamil galtai 2.8 lakh valte tundingna leh Tamil mipite lungkimna lemna zon di mabana amohpuak lian pen ahi. Hichibang zenzun lakah tunung hun di genkholh abaihlam kei hi. Banghileh LTTE kiphuhkhiat dan leh a lohsapna ziak uh saulou i en suk ding uhi.

Kiphuhna Ziak:

Sri Lanka ah Tamil-te BC hunlai peka pana ana teng uh ahita hi. Kum zabi 19 leh 20 laia British-te’n nasem di’n India panin mi tampi ana lalut uhi. Sri Lanka mising 2.1 crore lakah Sinhala-73.8%, Tamil-18% (Sri Lanka’ Tamil-13.9%, India’ Tamil-4.6%) apha uhi. Sinhala-te’n Tamil-te ana nelhsiah ua, agam mi danin ana pom kei uhi. Sri Lanka in 1948 a zalenna amuh in Tamil-te tungah nelhsiahna ahung kipanpan hi.

S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike in Sri Lanka a Sinhala ham chauh official a zak di atangkoupih ziakin 1956 in President a telching in aom hi. Amah telching a om toh kiton in akichiamna bangin nasep apantou hi. Hih in 1958 in nam nihte kalah tualgal huaisetak piangsak hi. Tamil-te’n Sri Lanka solkal amuanzohna uh akiam va hiaita a Tamil gam amuh masang uh bitlou di chih ngaihdan aneita uhi. Tamil ham nelhsiah a Sinhala ham tawisangnapaipih zom zel ua, Tamil laisiam tamtak Civil Service leh College lut di ahaksa semsem hi

Tamil sinlaite’n 1970 in Tamil Students Movement chia kiminvoh in helna ana pan uh ahi. Sri Lanka Danbu kibawl thak pen in Tamil-te anelhsiah ziakin 1972 apat Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) min in kiphinna apan uhi. Hih kum in Tamil Students Movement apan in Tamil New Tigers(TNT) leh Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization (TELO) chi’n pawl nih ahung kisuah uhi. Hih TNT pen Vilupilai Prabakaran lamkaihna in May 5, 1976 Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) chia khekin ana om ahi. LTTE tup ahihleh Sri Lanka mallam leh suahlama Tamil-te luahna tenga Tamil Gam siamkhiat di ahi.

Amasawndan Uh:
Galdou taktak 1983 in apan uhi. Abultungin LTTE in Tamil singnuaimi pawl tuamtuamte toh ana asemkhawm ua, 1984 in TELO, EROS, PLOTE leh EPRLF kigawmna Eelam National Liberation Front(ENLF) azom hi.

TELO in India ngaihdan pompih in Sri Lanka toh kihoulem a ut hi. LTTE in India ama phattuamna di chauh a nasem chi’n TELO ngaihdan ana pompih kei hi. Tuachi’n 1986 in ENLF apan LTTE ataikhia a kidouna in anungzuih ngal hi. LTTE-te in TELO lamkai teng leh anautang teng athat bei phial hi. Tuakhit in EPRLF munpite adou zom zel uhi. Tamil helpawl 20 vel om tengin LTTE zop dingin thupiak abawl ua azom utloute hepkhiat ahizel mai uhi.

Akiphuh tunglai un India a Tamil loute nasan in zong ana panpih uhi. 1980’s laiin India sepaihte’n sinsakna ana pia uhi. LTTE-te helpawl dangte toh akibaklouhna ahihleh amau hinna pia a midang athah uh(suicide attack) leh akihingmatleh akithahna di ua angawng ua cyanide(poison)a oh uh ahi. Hihte ziakin Sri Lanka leh gamdang a Tamil-te panpihna hoihtak angah uhi. Panpihna sum tamzawte UK, US, Switzerland, Canada, Australia leh Scandinavia gamte apan ahi.


1.Gamdangte Gupna Mansuahna:

LTTE-te tualthahna leh dankalh a gamtatna tamtakah mohpaih in aom uhi. FBI (USA) in, “leitunga helpawl lauhuaipen leh tualthahna sangpen a kigolh” chi’n achiamteh hi. India (1992), US (1997), UK (2000) leh European Union (2006) simin gam 32 in LTTE etsan(banned) apuang uhi. Hih in amaban uh abingsak mahmah hi. Pu Rajiv athah uh abawlkhelh lianpen uh ahi.

Mi lian ana thahte uh:

1) 1991 - Rajiv Gandhi (India’ PM)
2) 1993 - Ranasinghe Premadasa ( SL Prez)
3) 1999 - Neelan Thiruchelvam (SL Tamil MP)
4) 2000 - C.V. Goonaratne (Industry Minister)
5) 2005-Lakshman Kadirgamar (Foreign Min)
6) 2008-T.Maheswaran (UNP- Opposition MP)
7) ’’ - D. M. Dassanayake (SL Minister)
8) ’’ - Jeyaraj Fernandopulle (Highway Min.)

LTTE-te Gamtat Valna:

Mipi kipunkhawmna, Mosque, bank leh mun tamtak ah bomb pawksak ua, mi nautang aza asim ana that uhi. Black Tigers(Suicide Squad)-te’n 1980 leh 2000 kikal in suicide attack 168 vei bawl ua mi aza asim athat uhi. Sinhala leh Muslim-te thagum in anot pawt uhi. India, Kenya leh UK simin gam tuamtuam ah Credit Card zangin mi sum ana guksak uhi. Khamtheih a summet bawl a ngoh in om uhi. Naupang sepaih a thagum a alaklut ziakun gam tamtakin mohpaih hi.

2. Prabakaran’ Bawlkhelhna:

A). Prabakaran in aneulai a ana kithuapihte chihlouh ngal midang kuamah agingta kei hi. Ama ngaihdan chauh a ana pai ziaka abawlkhelh pipen 2005 election ahi. Mahinda Rajapaksa in President achin ngeingei leh LTTE sukbei di chi’n kamchiam ana bawl hi. Anuaiate’n lemna omna dinga panlatu Ranil Wickremesinghe support puang dia ana nget uh ngaihsaklouin LTTE-te luahna gam tengah election boycott ana puang hi. Tamil-te’n vote akhiat theihlouh ziak un Rajapaksa in vote tawmnou khat in gualzohna angah hi. Rajapaksa in LTTE-te sukbeina ding nasep apan touta a, sepaih tamtak alakbeh hi. Kum 2008 sung maimai in sepaih 40,000 tak alakbeh uhi.

B). Prabakaran in gamdangte toh kihoutuak theihna di panlakna ana bawl siam kei hi. Kum 2002 a Sri Lanka toh Cease Fire agreement akaih nungin gamdangte mitmei venglou in tualthahna leh dankalh a gamtatna tampi ah ana kigolh uhi. Hih in Tamil-te thuakgimna sukveng sawm gamdangte panpihna kiamsak hi. Kum 2005 a Sri Lanka Foreign Minister ana thah un gam tamtak gupna beisak hi. European Union (gam 17) leh Canada in ban puankhum ngal uhi. LTTE-te’n gam 15,000 sq km aluah uh mansuah a 3 sq km sunga khum bichilh a aomlai un zong gamdangte’n LTTE-te gupna thu ana gen kha kei uhi. Gamdangte lunghihmohpih pen minautang lakh val ahentangte uh ahizaw hi.

C). Prabakaran in ana gintat mahmah, alawi hoihtak LTTE’ political advisor (L) Anton Balasingham in LTTE in zalen gam asual pen tawpsan a Sri Lanka danbu sunga ki-ukna tuam tan a lungkim dia ana chialna pompih in Norway palai panna in 2002 Cease Fire Agreement suai ana kai hi. Sri Lanka in masanga ana pom utlouh LTTE pen Tamil mipite ai-oh dana apom ziakin LTTE-te’n amau kisuk lal na di’n azang uhi. Mun tamtakah tualthahna apaipih zom zel uhi. 2006 in Sri Lanka’ Army Chief Lt. General Sarath Fonseka suicide attack ana bawl ua adamkik zou hi. Hih ziakin cease fire sukbei in aom a galdouna akipankik hi. Prabakaran in gamdangte’n Sri Lanka sukdaih sawm nanteh chi’n ana lungmuang hi. Ama gintat banglou takin apaizaw ta hi.

3. Karuna Faction Pianna 2004:

LTTE Military Commander Colonel Karuna in suahlam Tamil-te atamzaw ahihhang ua rank lian lam a deihsakna kipelou chih ziaka akiphin in Prabakaran in ana zol sawmlou hi. Amah thautawi 5000 in anung thuap a LTTE toh hahtakin akikaptuak uhi. Karuna pawl Sri Lanka sepaihte khut ah akipekhia ua LTTE douna di’n TMVP kichi phutkhia uhi.Hih in LTTE-te hatna sukiam mahmah hi. Sri Lanka sepaihte’n beihpi asuah touh zel lai un LTTE-te’n a tawm ziak un ana nang zou kei uhi.

4. Mipi Gupna Mansuahna :

Atawpna ah, Prabakaran lohsapna liantak pen a mipite lungkimsaklouhna ahi. Ama’n a mi humbit sawmte na humbit lou in a na tawlmeek khazel hi. Sepaih a kivaihawm gamte thudik a apai keileh singnuaimi a kivaihawm gam apai hoih kei di chih mit a muhsa ahi. Ei lam banga dik in dik kei taleh a thu uh zuih mai di chih dandeuh ahi. Ama’ ngaihdan pompihlou Tamil political leader leh mohna bei mi nautang tamtak ana that hi. Sri Lanka Sepaihte khut a kipekhia LTTE mi 9100 val (numei=1,601) lakah a tamtak in Prabhakaran tunga alungkimlouh thu uh puang uhi. Amau un Tamil Gam sualtu hilou in Prabhakaran venbit sawm lel uh hi dan in gen uhi.

Sri Lanka sepaihte’n thumvei vingveng ana lohsap nung un Eelam War - IV 2006 in ahung pankik ua, Prabakaran May 18 ni a athah khit un gal zouta uh hi’n puang uhi. Tunung in amah khektu mi thak a hung piang diai ahihke’h gal chimtak in Tamilte’n thagum suahlouin lemna lampi azon sawm di uai chih mipi bildoh ahita hi. President Rajapaksa in Tamil-te dinmun Constitution 13th Amendment dungzui a etkai hi di‘n puang hi. Kum 25 val Sri Lanka buaina ah mi 80,000 val in sihloh uhi. Tuate lakah LTTE=27,639,Sri Lanka’ sepaih=21,066, Police=1000, India’ Sepaih=1500 pangkha hi.

Source: Khal-vontawi


-Mangneu Thangkhal

Mi tamtak in i ngaklah uh pawl 10 leh 12 result board tuamtuam in apuangkhe zangzangta hi. Hih hun pen sinlaite adi’n hinkhua kikhelna dinga lampi zuih kipatna ahihziakin lung awpkai huai mahmah hi. Bang course lak di? Bang College/University a kai a banglam manoh di? Kua toh khoisunga omkhawm di? Chih doknate’n sinlaite leh nu-le-pa lungsim aluah den hi. Hih hun a thupukna bawl pen silbaih ahikeia zong bawl dik haksa khat ana suak hi. Thupukna i lakkhial leh damsunga i lohsapna bulpi hithei ahih manin pilvang ngai mahmah mai hi.

1. Course Telna ah-Nang v/s Midang:

Eilam a i na bawl khelh mahmah uh pen i lunglutna leh i siamtheihna chih enlou a mi’n hoih a chih ziaka i uimaw louphuk suk zel pen uh ahi. Kum 10 val vingveng lai i sim sunga Maths leh Science bang ana thaneh ngai mawngmawng lou ahoih hi chih ziaka la suk, nu-le-pate phutluih ziaka zuisuk chihte i na chindan ahi. Mi tampi pai ziaka i siam theih vawtlouh course va lak ziaka maban sawn theiloua bingtawp chih pen bawlkhelhna liantak ahi. Hih pen high school a i om sunga i hihna i na kitheihlouh ziak leh Career Awareness bangmah i na kipiaklouh ziak uh ahi deuh hi. Career After+2/Directory of Higher Learning kichi laibu bu khat beek lei thei lei deihhuai mahmah hi. Pawl 10 leh 12 pass khinte adi’n azekai lam ana hi kha zel hi. Tuaziakin high school sinlaite adi’n Career Guidance pibawl poimoh mahmah hi.

Tulai in khopi lian lakah course asawm-aza a sim a om ziazua ta hi. Hih in sinlaite deihtelna tanzausak mahmah hi. Ahi’n khenkhat atel siamloute adingin kipalpukna tunthei daih zel hi. I lunglutna leh sepna muhna dinga hoih deuh course-te career guidance bu, magazine ban ana zilsate apana kankhiat sawm di ahi. Government sepna ente adi’n Civil Services, Bank PO, Teaching, Engineering, Lawyer, Defence, Doctor/Nurse, Clerk/Secretary etc. kigual suk deudau ding hi. Private company lam ente adi’n tamsem lai ding hi. MBA, IT, Hotel Management, Tourism, Fashion Designing, Foreign Languages, Journalism etc. chihte sum tampi luak theihna suakta hi. Tunai deuhin MSW leh Rural Development lam toh kisaia NGO a nasepna bang zong ahung kithang mahmah hi. Professional course sum tamtak senga zil sawmte adi’n institution minthang leh governmenttheihpih tel siam poimoh mahmah hi.

2. Sepna Zonna ah - Govt. v/s Private:

India government in laisiam teng lungtunna ding bangtaka loh etlahhuai ana bawl zoh louh ziakin tamtakin MBA, Chartered Account, MCA chihte zilin private company-te ah alutsan uhi. Ahah thuak khak pen defence sector ah Army Officer di bang tampi kitasam hi. Hichibanga mipil, huakbu hoih tamtak atan nungin India in Sixth Pay Comission 2008 tungtawnin government kham hahtakin ahung puah thak kik hi. Tua dungzuiin Civil Service ahung minthang mahmah kik hi. Ahi’n 6th Pay in Civil Service leh sepaih lama a rank sanglamte angvan seng chia soiselin a omkik hi. A rank ngiam lamte adi’n van man khan toh et a phatuam senglou in alang kik hi. Bang hileh government sepna tamzawte etlahhuai sak deuh tuam mahmah hi. Nurse khat in khaloh Rs.30,000 ahung san dup mai chu sil lamdang chih louh theih louh ahi. Tualeh government a pen adetdou chih ziakin adeih huai na pen kiam ngai lou hi.

Lehlamah America sum dinmun puksiat ziakin leitung pumpi a private company tampi puksia in tamtakin sepna amansuah uhi. Hih hun ah “government a mah” chih kammal ahung popular ta zel hi. Ahi’n hih buaina in asuk khaklouh company tampi aom veve a asukkhak khenkhat zong pukse den sam lou hi. Tualeh private a bawlfuh ngalte aval chih om mawk lou zel. Banah India a kum 10 dana pay commission aom sungin private company ate bang aloh uh a azah nih/thum in ana khang man kik zel hi. Private company hoihtakte ah kum khat in khaloh 30% bang khangzou tazen hi! Company liante’n loh piakdan leh sepdan zong kichup takin anei uhi. Thu thengthe khat ziaka, “Zing chiah hung kuan nawn dah in” kichih theih mawk hilou hi. Hichibang company thupitakte a lutna dingin amau etlah kham qualification i neih a poimoh ding hi. Amau etlah zoh di’n i kitat hiam zou diai chih ahi.

3. Zilna Mun: Manipur v/s State Pulam:

Inlam a issue kik khat ahihleh, chawm zou di hinapi a, paisia kha inteh chih toh i tate gam pulam a sawl di utlouhna ahi. Hih pen muvanlai tui akpi i opsaka akeuh chianga vanlilai a leng di lai ak hon laka avak toh kibang thei lel ding hi. Mihing dai kaih zoh ahi kei chih thudik ahi. Tununga khotanga i gam-le-nam adia kizang di sinlaite pen insung/khosung chauh a “mi hoih” chih hilou in inn/gam pulama zong “khosuahzou mi” ahih ding poimoh ahi. Zilna mun sangzaw a i zilzoh laisiah i khomuhna tanzau dinga, i maban khou sang sem ding hi. Education i chih pen class room sung leh laisimna pan chauh a kingah hilou in mi tuamtuam toh kigoptuahna pana zong kingah ahi. Mi’n a gen thupi international education chih vel ahita.

Lehlamtakah sum-le-pai haksat ziaka pawt zouloute’n i kinepna beisak tuanlouh di ahi. Institution tamtak minthang saktu pen a student-te mah ana hilel hi. Mun danga pawt ziaka lai kisiam teitei zong ahi tuan kei hi. Manipur University, DM College chihte bang simmoh theih tuam hilou hi. Thamlouin, History, Political Science, Sociology chihte laksawm i hihleh Churachandpur College banga zong regular taka kai a mi khat suak theih ahita hi. Khoi ah om in bang course zil lei zong kuhkalna, pawnthohna, laisim lam number 1 a koih theihna i neih nakleh i omna mun khat peuhpeuh a gualnung phaktheih veve ahi.

Source: KHAL-VONTAWI | Vol-IV Issue -(2) ::: April (Ningkha) – June (Maukha) 2009

Full text of Barack Obama's speech in Cairo

(REUTERS) CAIRO: Below is the prepared text US President Barack Obama's speech in Egypt aimed at healing a rift with the Muslim world. I am honored to be in the timeless city of Cairo, and to be hosted by two remarkable institutions. For over a thousand years, Al-Azhar has stood as a beacon of Islamic learning, and for over a century, Cairo University has been a source of Egypt's advancement. Together, you represent the harmony between tradition and progress. I am grateful for your hospitality, and the hospitality of the people of Egypt. I am also proud to carry with me the goodwill of the American people, and a greeting of peace from Muslim communities
in my country: assalaamu alaykum.

[US president Barack Obama (L) and Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak during a national guard welcome ceremony at Qubba palace in Cairo, Egypt. (AP Photo)]

"We meet at a time of tension between the United States and Muslims around the world - tension rooted in historical forces that go beyond any current policy debate. The relationship between Islam and the West includes centuries of co-existence and cooperation, but also conflict and religious wars. More recently, tension has been fed by colonialism that denied rights and opportunities to many Muslims, and a Cold War in which Muslim-majority countries were too often treated as proxies without regard to their own aspirations. Moreover, the sweeping change brought by modernity and globalization led many Muslims to view the West as hostile to the traditions of Islam.

Violent extremists have exploited these tensions in a small but potent minority of Muslims. The attacks of September 11th, 2001 and the continued efforts of these extremists to engage in violence against civilians has led some in my country to view Islam as inevitably hostile not only to America and Western countries, but also to human rights. This has bred more fear and mistrust.

So long as our relationship is defined by our differences, we will empower those who sow hatred rather than peace, and who promote conflict rather than the cooperation that can help all of our people achieve justice and prosperity. This cycle of suspicion and discord must end.

I have come here to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world; one based upon mutual interest and mutual respect; and one based upon the truth that America and Islam are not exclusive, and need not be in competition. Instead, they overlap, and share common principles - principles of justice and progress; tolerance and the dignity of all human beings.

I do so recognizing that change cannot happen overnight. No single speech can eradicate years of mistrust, nor can I answer in the time that I have all the complex questions that brought us to this point. But I am convinced that in order to move forward, we must say openly the things we hold in our hearts, and that too often are said only behind closed doors. There must be a sustained effort to listen to each other; to learn from each other; to respect one another; and to seek common ground. As the Holy Koran tells us, "Be conscious of God and speak always the truth." That is what I will try to do - to speak the truth as best I can, humbled by the task before us, and firm in my belief that the interests we share as human beings are far more powerful than the forces that drive us apart.

Part of this conviction is rooted in my own experience. I am a Christian, but my father came from a Kenyan family that includes generations of Muslims. As a boy, I spent several years in Indonesia and heard the call of the azaan at the break of dawn and the fall of dusk. As a young man, I worked in Chicago communities where many found dignity and peace in their Muslim faith.

As a student of history, I also know civilization's debt to Islam. It was Islam - at places like Al-Azhar University - that carried the light of learning through so many centuries, paving the way for Europe's Renaissance and Enlightenment. It was innovation in Muslim communities that developed the order of algebra; our magnetic compass and tools of navigation; our mastery of pens and printing; our understanding of how disease spreads and how it can be healed. Islamic culture
has given us majestic arches and soaring spires; timeless poetry and cherished music; elegant calligraphy and places of peaceful contemplation. And throughout history, Islam has demonstrated through words and deeds the possibilities of religious tolerance and racial equality.

I know, too, that Islam has always been a part of America's story. The first nation to recognize my country was Morocco. In signing the Treaty of Tripoli in 1796, our second President John Adams wrote, "The United States has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion or tranquility of Muslims." And since our founding, American Muslims have enriched the United States. They have fought in our wars, served in government, stood for civil rights, started businesses, taught at our Universities, excelled in our sports arenas, won Nobel Prizes, built our tallest building, and lit the Olympic Torch. And when the first Muslim-American was recently elected to Congress, he took the oath to defend our Constitution using the same Holy Koran that one of our Founding Fathers - Thomas Jefferson - kept in his personal library.

So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed. That experience guides my conviction that
partnership between America and Islam must be based on what Islam is, not what it isn't. And I consider it part of my responsibility as President of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear.

But that same principle must apply to Muslim perceptions of America. Just as Muslims do not fit a crude stereotype, America is not the crude stereotype of a self-interested empire. The United States has been one of the greatest sources of progress that the world has ever known. We were born out of revolution against an empire. We were founded upon the ideal that all are created equal, and we have shed blood and struggled for centuries to give meaning to those words - within our borders, and around the world. We are shaped by every culture, drawn from every end of the Earth, and dedicated to a simple concept: E pluribus unum: "Out of many, one."

Much has been made of the fact that an African-American with the name Barack Hussein Obama could be elected President. But my personal story is not so unique. The dream of opportunity for all people has not come true for everyone in America, but its promise exists for all who come to our shores - that includes nearly seven million American Muslims in our country today who enjoy incomes and education that are higher than average.

Moreover, freedom in America is indivisible from the freedom to practice one's religion. That is why there is a mosque in every state of our union, and over 1,200 mosques within our borders. That is why the U.S. government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab, and to punish those who would deny it.

So let there be no doubt: Islam is a part of America. And I 'believe that America holds within her the truth that regardless of race, religion, or station in life, all of us share common aspirations - to live in peace and security; to get an education and to work with dignity; to love our families, our communities, and our God. These things we share. This is the hope of all humanity.

Of course, recognizing our common humanity is only the beginning of our task. Words alone cannot meet the needs of our people. These needs will be met only if we act boldly in the years ahead; and if we understand that the challenges we face are shared, and our failure to meet them will hurt us all.

For we have learned from recent experience that when a financial system weakens in one country, prosperity is hurt everywhere. When a new flu infects one human being, all are at risk. When one nation pursues a nuclear weapon, the risk of nuclear attack rises for all nations. When violent extremists operate in one stretch of mountains, people are endangered across an ocean. And when innocents in Bosnia and Darfur are slaughtered, that is a stain on our collective conscience. That is what it means to share this world in the 21st century. That is the responsibility we have to one another as human beings.

This is a difficult responsibility to embrace. For human history has often been a record of nations and tribes subjugating one another to serve their own interests. Yet in this new age, such attitudes are self-defeating. Given our interdependence, any world order that elevates one nation or group of people over another will inevitably fail. So whatever we think of the past, we must not be prisoners of it. Our problems must be dealt with through partnership; progress must be shared.

That does not mean we should ignore sources of tension. Indeed, it suggests the opposite: we must face these tensions squarely. And so in that spirit, let me speak as clearly and plainly as I can about some specific issues that I believe we must finally confront together.

[Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak (L) greets his US counterpart Barack Obama at the presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt. (AFP Photo)]

The first issue that we have to confront is violent extremism in all of its forms.

In Ankara, I made clear that America is not - and never will be - at war with Islam. We will, however, relentlessly confront violent extremists who pose a grave threat to our security. Because we reject the same thing that people of all faiths reject: the killing of innocent men, women, and children. And it is my first duty as President to protect the American people.

The situation in Afghanistan demonstrates America's goals, and our need to work together. Over seven years ago, the United States pursued al
Qaeda and the Taliban with broad international support. We did not go by choice, we went because of necessity. I am aware that some question or justify the events of 9/11. But let us be clear: al Qaeda killed nearly 3,000 people on that day. The victims were innocent men, women and children from America and many other nations who had done nothing to harm anybody. And yet Al Qaeda chose to ruthlessly murder these people, claimed credit for the attack, and even now states their determination to kill on a massive scale. They have affiliates in many countries and are trying to expand their reach. These are not opinions to be debated; these are facts to be dealt with.

Make no mistake: we do not want to keep our troops in Afghanistan. We seek no military bases there. It is agonizing for America to lose our young men and women. It is costly and politically difficult to continue this conflict. We would gladly bring every single one of our troops home if we could be confident that there were not violent extremists in Afghanistan and Pakistan determined to kill as many Americans as they possibly can. But that is not yet the case.

That's why we're partnering with a coalition of forty-six countries. And despite the costs involved, America's commitment will not weaken. Indeed, none of us should tolerate these extremists. They have killed in many countries. They have killed people of different faiths - more than any other, they have killed Muslims. Their actions are irreconcilable with the rights of human beings, the progress of nations, and with Islam. The Holy Koran teaches that whoever kills an innocent, it is as if he has killed all mankind; and whoever saves a person, it is as if he has saved all mankind. The enduring faith of over a billion people is so much bigger than the narrow hatred of a few. Islam is not part of the problem in combating violent extremism - it is an important part of promoting peace.

We also know that military power alone is not going to solve the problems in Afghanistan and Pakistan. That is why we plan to invest $1.5 billion each year over the next five years to partner with Pakistanis to build schools and hospitals, roads and businesses, and hundreds of millions to help those who have been displaced. And that is why we are providing more than $2.8 billion to help Afghans develop their economy and deliver services that people depend upon.

Let me also address the issue of Iraq. Unlike Afghanistan, Iraq was a war of choice that provoked strong differences in my country and around the world. Although I believe that the Iraqi people are ultimately better off without the tyranny of Saddam Hussein, I also believe that events in Iraq have reminded America of the need to use diplomacy and build international consensus to resolve our problems whenever possible. Indeed, we can recall the words of Thomas Jefferson, who said: "I hope that our wisdom will grow with our power, and teach us that the less we use our power the greater it will be."

Today, America has a dual responsibility: to help Iraq forge a better future - and to leave Iraq to Iraqis. I have made it clear to the Iraqi people that we pursue no bases, and no claim on their territory or resources. Iraq's sovereignty is its own. That is why I ordered the removal of our combat brigades by next August. That is why we will honor our agreement with Iraq's democratically-elected government to remove combat troops from Iraqi cities by July, and to remove all our troops from Iraq by 2012. We will help Iraq train its Security Forces and develop its economy. But we will support a secure and united Iraq as a partner, and never as a patron.

And finally, just as America can never tolerate violence by extremists, we must never alter our principles. 9/11 was an enormous trauma to our
country. The fear and anger that it provoked was understandable, but in some cases, it led us to act contrary to our ideals. We are taking concrete actions to change course. I have unequivocally prohibited the use of torture by the United States, and I have ordered the prison at Guantanamo Bay closed by early next year.

So America will defend itself respectful of the sovereignty of nations and the rule of law. And we will do so in partnership with Muslim communities which are also threatened. The sooner the extremists are isolated and unwelcome in Muslim communities, the sooner we will all be safer.

The second major source of tension that we need to discuss is the situation between Israelis, Palestinians and the Arab world.

America's strong bonds with Israel are well known. This bond is unbreakable. It is based upon cultural and historical ties, and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied.

Around the world, the Jewish people were persecuted for centuries, and anti-Semitism in Europe culminated in an unprecedented Holocaust.
Tomorrow, I will visit Buchenwald, which was part of a network of camps where Jews were enslaved, tortured, shot and gassed to death by the Third Reich. Six million Jews were killed - more than the entire Jewish population of Israel today. Denying that fact is baseless, ignorant, and hateful. Threatening Israel with destruction - or repeating vile stereotypes about Jews - is deeply wrong, and only serves to evoke in the minds of Israelis this most painful of memories while preventing the peace that the people of this region deserve.

On the other hand, it is also undeniable that the Palestinian people - Muslims and Christians - have suffered in pursuit of a homeland. For more than sixty years they have endured the pain of dislocation. Many wait in refugee camps in the West Bank, Gaza, and neighboring lands for a life of peace and security that they have never been able to lead. They endure the daily humiliations - large and small - that come with occupation. So let there be no doubt: the situation for the Palestinian people is intolerable. America will not turn our backs on the legitimate Palestinian aspiration for dignity, opportunity, and a state of their own.

For decades, there has been a stalemate: two peoples with legitimate aspirations, each with a painful history that makes compromise elusive. It is easy to point fingers - for Palestinians to point to the displacement brought by Israel's founding, and for Israelis to point to the constant hostility and attacks throughout its history from within its borders as well as beyond. But if we see this conflict only from one side or the other, then we will be blind to the truth: the only resolution is for the aspirations of both sides to be met through two states, where Israelis and Palestinians each live in peace and security.

That is in Israel's interest, Palestine's interest, America's interest, and the world's interest. That is why I intend to personally pursue this outcome with all the patience that the task requires. The obligations that the parties have agreed to under the Road Map are clear. For peace to come, it is time for them - and all of us - to live up to our responsibilities.

Palestinians must abandon violence. Resistance through violence and killing is wrong and does not succeed. For centuries, black people in America suffered the lash of the whip as slaves and the humiliation of segregation. But it was not violence that won full and equal rights. It was a peaceful and determined insistence upon the ideals at the center of America's founding. This same story can be told by people from South Africa to South Asia; from Eastern Europe
to Indonesia. It's a story with a simple truth: that violence is a dead end. It is a sign of neither courage nor power to shoot rockets at sleeping children, or to blow up old women on a bus. That is not how moral authority is claimed; that is how it is surrendered.

Now is the time for Palestinians to focus on what they can build. The Palestinian Authority must develop its capacity to govern, with institutions that serve the needs of its people. Hamas does have support among some Palestinians, but they also have responsibilities. To play a role in fulfilling Palestinian aspirations, and to unify the Palestinian people, Hamas must put an end to violence, recognize past agreements, and recognize Israel's right to exist.

At the same time, Israelis must acknowledge that just as Israel's right to exist cannot be denied, neither can Palestine's. The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements. This construction violates previous agreements and undermines efforts to achieve peace. It is time for these settlements to stop.

Israel must also live up to its obligations to ensure that Palestinians can live, and work, and develop their society. And just as it devastates Palestinian families, the continuing humanitarian crisis in Gaza does not serve Israel's security; neither does the continuing lack of opportunity in the West Bank. Progress in the daily lives of the Palestinian people must be part of a road to peace, and Israel must take concrete steps to enable such progress.

Finally, the Arab States must recognize that the Arab Peace Initiative was an important beginning, but not the end of their responsibilities. The Arab-Israeli conflict should no longer be used to distract the people of Arab nations from other problems. Instead, it must be a cause for action to help the Palestinian people develop the institutions that will sustain their state; to recognize Israel's legitimacy; and to choose progress over a self-defeating focus on the past.

America will align our policies with those who pursue peace, and say in public what we say in private to Israelis and Palestinians and Arabs. We cannot impose peace. But privately, many Muslims recognize that Israel will not go away. Likewise, many Israelis recognize the need for a Palestinian state. It is time for us to act on what everyone knows to be true.

Too many tears have flowed. Too much blood has been shed. All of us have a responsibility to work for the day when the mothers of Israelis and Palestinians can see their children grow up without fear; when the Holy Land of three great faiths is the place of peace that God intended it to be; when Jerusalem is a secure and lasting home for Jews and Christians and Muslims, and a place for all of the children of Abraham to mingle peacefully together as in the story of Isra, when Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed (peace be upon them) joined in prayer.

The third source of tension is our shared interest in the rights and responsibilities of nations on nuclear weapons.

This issue has been a source of tension between the United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran. For many years, Iran has defined itself in part by its opposition to my country, and there is indeed a tumultuous history between us. In the middle of the Cold War, the United States played a role in the overthrow of a democratically-elected Iranian government. Since the Islamic Revolution, Iran has played a role in acts of hostage-taking and violence against U.S. troops and civilians. This history is well known. Rather than remain trapped in the past, I have made it clear to Iran's leaders and people that my country is prepared to move forward. The question, now, is not what Iran is against, but rather what future it wants to build.

It will be hard to overcome decades of mistrust, but we will proceed with courage, rectitude and resolve. There will be many issues to discuss between our two countries, and we are willing to move forward without preconditions on the basis of mutual respect. But it is clear to all concerned that when it comes to nuclear weapons, we have reached a decisive point. This is not simply about America's interests. It is about preventing a nuclear arms race in the Middle East that could lead this region and the world down a hugely dangerous path.

I understand those who protest that some countries have weapons that others do not. No single nation should pick and choose which nations hold nuclear weapons. That is why I strongly reaffirmed America's commitment to seek a world in which no nations hold nuclear weapons. And any nation - including Iran - should have the right to access peaceful nuclear power if it complies with its responsibilities under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. That commitment is at the core of the Treaty, and it must be kept for all who fully abide by it. And I am hopeful that all countries in the region can share in this goal.

The fourth issue that I will address is democracy. I know there has been controversy about the promotion of democracy in recent years, and much
of this controversy is connected to the war in Iraq. So let me be clear: no system of government can or should be imposed upon one nation by any other.

That does not lessen my commitment, however, to governments that reflect the will of the people. Each nation gives life to this principle in its own way, grounded in the traditions of its own people. America does not presume to know what is best for everyone, just as we would not presume to pick the outcome of a peaceful election. But I do have an unyielding belief that all people yearn for certain things: the ability to speak your mind and have a say in how you are governed; confidence in the rule of law and the equal administration of justice; government that is transparent and doesn't steal from the people; the freedom to live as you choose. Those are not just American ideas, they are human rights, and that is why we will support them everywhere.

There is no straight line to realize this promise. But this much is clear: governments that protect these rights are ultimately more stable, successful and secure. Suppressing ideas never succeeds in making them go away. America respects the right of all peaceful and law-abiding voices to be heard around the world, even if we disagree with them. And we will welcome all elected, peaceful governments - provided they govern with respect for all their people.

[Barack Obama waves at the end of his landmark address to the Muslim world in the Grand Hall of Cairo University in Cairo. (AFP Photo)]

This last point is important because there are some who advocate for democracy only when they are out of power; once in power, they are ruthless in suppressing the rights of others. No matter where it takes hold, government of the people and by the people sets a single standard for all who hold power: you must maintain your power through consent, not coercion; you must respect the rights of minorities, and participate with a spirit of tolerance and compromise; you must place the interests of your people and the legitimate workings of the political process above your party. Without these ingredients, elections alone do not make true democracy.

The fifth issue that we must address together is religious freedom.

Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance. We see it in the history of Andalusia and Cordoba during the Inquisition. I saw it firsthand as a child in Indonesia, where devout Christians worshiped freely in an overwhelmingly Muslim country. That is the spirit we need today. People in every country should be free to choose and live their faith based upon the persuasion of the mind, heart, and soul. This tolerance is essential for religion to thrive, but it is being challenged in many different ways.

Among some Muslims, there is a disturbing tendency to measure one's own faith by the rejection of another's. The richness of religious diversity must be upheld - whether it is for Maronites in Lebanon or the Copts in Egypt. And fault lines must be closed among Muslims as well, as the divisions between Sunni and Shia have led to tragic violence, particularly in Iraq.

Freedom of religion is central to the ability of peoples to live together. We must always examine the ways in which we protect it. For instance, in the United States, rules on charitable giving have made it harder for Muslims to fulfill their religious obligation. That is why I am committed to working with American Muslims to ensure that they can fulfill zakat.

Likewise, it is important for Western countries to avoid impeding Muslim citizens from practicing religion as they see fit - for instance, by
dictating what clothes a Muslim woman should wear. We cannot disguise hostility towards any religion behind the pretence of liberalism.

Indeed, faith should bring us together. That is why we are forging service projects in America that bring together Christians, Muslims, and Jews. That is why we welcome efforts like Saudi Arabian King Abdullah's Interfaith dialogue and Turkey's leadership in the Alliance of Civilizations. Around the world, we can turn dialogue into Interfaith service, so bridges between peoples lead to action - whether it is combating malaria in Africa, or providing relief after a natural disaster.

The sixth issue that I want to address is women's rights. I know there is debate about this issue. I reject the view of some in the West that a woman who chooses to cover her hair is somehow less equal, but I do believe that a woman who is denied an education is denied equality. And it is no coincidence that countries where women are well-educated are far more likely to be prosperous.

Now let me be clear: issues of women's equality are by no means simply an issue for Islam. In Turkey, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Indonesia, we have seen Muslim-majority countries elect a woman to lead. Meanwhile, the struggle for women's equality continues in many aspects of American life, and in countries around the world.

Our daughters can contribute just as much to society as our sons, and our common prosperity will be advanced by allowing all humanity - men and women - to reach their full potential. I do not believe that women must make the same choices as men in order to be equal, and I respect those women who choose to live their lives in traditional roles. But it should be their choice. That is why the United States will partner with any Muslim-majority country to support expanded literacy for girls, and to help young women pursue employment through micro-financing that helps people live their dreams.

Finally, I want to discuss economic development and opportunity.

I know that for many, the face of globalization is contradictory. The Internet and television can bring knowledge and information, but also offensive sexuality and mindless violence. Trade can bring new wealth and opportunities, but also huge disruptions and changing communities. In all nations - including my own - this change can bring fear. Fear that because of modernity we will lose of control over our economic choices, our politics, and most importantly our identities - those things we most cherish about our communities, our families, our traditions, and our faith.

But I also know that human progress cannot be denied. There need not be contradiction between development and tradition. Countries like Japan and South Korea grew their economies while maintaining distinct cultures. The same is true for the astonishing progress within Muslim-majority countries from Kuala Lumpur to Dubai. In ancient times and in our times, Muslim communities have been at the forefront of innovation and education.

This is important because no development strategy can be based only upon what comes out of the ground, nor can it be sustained while young people are out of work. Many Gulf States have enjoyed great wealth as a consequence of oil, and some are beginning to focus it on broader development. But all of us must recognize that education and innovation will be the currency of the 21st century, and in too many Muslim communities there remains underinvestment in these areas. I am emphasizing such investments within my country. And while America in the past has focused on oil and gas in this part of the world, we now seek a broader engagement.

On education, we will expand exchange programs, and increase scholarships, like the one that brought my father to America, while encouraging more Americans to study in Muslim communities. And we will match promising Muslim students with internships in America; invest in on-line learning for teachers and children around the world; and create a new online network, so a teenager in Kansas can communicate instantly with a teenager in Cairo.

On economic development, we will create a new corps of business volunteers to partner with counterparts in Muslim-majority countries. And I will host a Summit on Entrepreneurship this year to identify how we can deepen ties between business leaders, foundations and social entrepreneurs in the United States and Muslim communities around the world.

On science and technology, we will launch a new fund to support technological development in Muslim-majority countries, and to help transfer
ideas to the marketplace so they can create jobs. We will open centers of scientific excellence in Africa, the Middle East and Southeast Asia, and appoint new Science Envoys to collaborate on programs that develop new sources of energy, create green jobs, digitize records, clean water, and grow new crops. And today I am announcing a new global effort with the Organization of the Islamic Conference to eradicate polio. And we will also expand partnerships with Muslim communities to promote child and maternal health.

All these things must be done in partnership. Americans are ready to join with citizens and governments; community organizations, religious leaders, and businesses in Muslim communities around the world to help our people pursue a better life.

The issues that I have described will not be easy to address. But we have a responsibility to join together on behalf of the world we seek - a world where extremists no longer threaten our people, and American troops have come home; a world where Israelis and Palestinians are each secure in a state of their own, and nuclear energy is used for peaceful purposes; a world where governments serve their citizens, and the rights of all God's children are respected. Those are mutual interests. That is the world we seek. But we can only achieve it together.

I know there are many - Muslim and non-Muslim - who question whether we can forge this new beginning. Some are eager to stoke the flames of division, and to stand in the way of progress. Some suggest that it isn't worth the effort - that we are fated to disagree, and civilizations are doomed to clash. Many more are simply skeptical that real change can occur. There is so much fear, so much mistrust. But if we choose to be bound by the past, we will never move forward. And I want to particularly say this to young people of every faith, in every country - you, more than anyone, have the ability to remake this world.

All of us share this world for but a brief moment in time. The question is whether we spend that time focused on what pushes us apart, or whether we commit ourselves to an effort - a sustained effort - to find common ground, to focus on the future we seek for our children, and to respect the dignity of all human beings.

It is easier to start wars than to end them. It is easier to blame others than to look inward; to see what is different about someone than to find the things we share. But we should choose the right path, not just the easy path. There is also one rule that lies at the heart of every religion - that we do unto others as we would have them do unto us. This truth transcends nations and peoples - a belief that isn't new; that isn't black or white or brown; that isn't Christian, or Muslim or Jew. It's a belief that pulsed in the cradle of civilization, and that still beats in the heart of billions. It's a faith in other people, and it's what brought me here today.

We have the power to make the world we seek, but only if we have the courage to make a new beginning, keeping in mind what has been written.

The Holy Koran tells us, "O mankind! We have created you male and a female; and we have made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one another."

The Talmud tells us: "The whole of the Torah is for the purpose of promoting peace."

The Holy Bible tells us, "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God."

The people of the world can live together in peace. We know that is God's vision. Now, that must be our work here on Earth. Thank you. And may God's peace be upon you.

Source: TNN

Leave Chandel: UKLF to KNO/KNA

IMPHAL, Jun 3: Reacting to the statement of KNO/KNA published in some section of the media on May 30, United Kuki Liberation Front (UKLF) has categorically stated that ‘lasting peace is not related to more peace deal or ceasefire agreement with KNO/KNA but for them to leave Chandel district and Manipur for good and take their base in Myanmar where they pledge to fight for a Kuki State’.

In a statement, home secretary of UKLF MT Nelson Haokip said that UKLF had always reciprocated to KNO/KNA peace deals only to be betrayed and back-stabbed each time a peace deal was made.

Nelson informed that in 2004, a ceasefire agreement was signed with the initiative of the then KNA chief (L) Vipin Haokip through the leaders of Chandel District Kuki Chiefs’ Association. But hardly two months later three UKLF cadres namely APO Alex Zou, Haolal Haokip and Joel Haokip were brutally murdered by Vipin Haokip himself at Sangaikot village and the bodies of the slain cadres are still untraceable.

Again in 2006, the present KNA chief Seijang Haokip alias Robert Haokip initiated another ceasefire through T Chungsei Haokip and John Thangjalet Haokip and it was signed at Sita village on August 5, 2006. The ceasefire, though, initially agreed to be signed at the home secretary level was represented by a mere SDC of KNO/KNA.

However, UKLF overlooked the matter for the sake of peace. Here too hardly after three months the very signatories of Sita ceasefire agreement namely (L) Jamthang Zou alias Solomon Zou, home secre-tary of UKLF and Hemsei Mate, PRO of UKLF were brutally murdered by KNO/KNA at Songjang village in Chandel district, Nelson said, adding that UKLF did not retaliate hoping for the intervention of peace emissaries.

Then came the Gunjil incident of May 11, 2009 in which two cadres of UKLF were killed by KNO/KNA without any provocation. It was never accidental as claimed by KNO/KNA in the media but an intentional one. If not, why should KNO/KNA cadres shout victory of Telsing clan over Tellang clan ?, Nelson asked.

Decrying the double standard of KNO/KNA, Nelson observed that a prominent Kuki leader (L) Pu Gengoukhup Mate was brutally murdered by KNO/KNA and at the same time condemned the act through media just to cover up their misdeed and cowardice.

Going by the past inci-dents, it is pertinent to put posers to KNO/KNA and the so-called peace emissaries, Nelson said, while asking how many more such peace deals, ceasefire ag-reements, customary prac- tices, etc are going to be dole out every time they (KNO/KNA) killed or going to kill us (UKLF) after each deal and why do the peace emissaries remain mute spectators without saying a single word of condemnation against KNO/KNA se- rial acts in breach of the ceasefire agreement principles.

It is really unfortunate that inspite of all these circumstances, KNO/KNA is still trying to paint UKLF as the one who does not want peace through media, Nelson said and added that UKLF has never been intimated for peace in accord- ance to customary practices as claimed by KNO/KNA. Even if they do so, UKLF has totally lost faith in KNO/KNA from past experiences.

Nelson went on to say that it is not exaggerating to say that KNO/KNA is the only trouble maker not only within Kuki society but also with other tribes and communities in Manipur. They incite communal violence, propagate clanism and inter-tribe/clan conflicts.

Basically an armed organisation of Telsing clan based in Ukhrul and Chu-rachandpur, KNO/KNA was formed mainly to ave-nge the death of (L) Pakang Haokip, chief of Maokot village in Ukhrul district, Nel- son said, adding that KNO/KNA pledges to fight for a Kuki homeland in Myanmar but remain busy creating trouble in India (Manipur).

Their misdeeds forced them out of Ukhrul district compelling them to take refuse in Chandel district mainly in and around Moreh along Indo-Myanmar border. But ungratefully, in 1994-95, they even tried to forcibly snatch the land/village rights of Kuki chiefs of border area who gave them refuge, Nelson alleged.

No sooner than they landed in Chandel district unprecedented magnitude of communal riot flare up which spread to other parts of Manipur in the hill area. It is known to all that KNO/KNA clash with everyone, everywhere -with Tamil and Meitei in Moreh, with KRA in Saikul area, with KNF (P) in Saitu-Kangpokpi area, with KNF (S) and Paite in Churachandpur district while trying to establish Telsing clan hegemony over others, Nelson asserted.

Source: TSE

Five killed in North Cachar hills

Guwahati, Jun 3 [NNN]: At least five persons died while a minor was injured when unidentified gunmen, suspected to be members of the Black Widow faction of tribal Dimasa insurgent group Dima Haolam Daogah, opened indiscriminate fire on a Naga village in restive North Cachar Hills district of Assam on Wednesday.

According to reports reaching here, a group of militants swooped down on Borochenam village, located around 28 Kms from district headquarters Haflong, in the wee hours of Wednesday and opened indiscriminate fire, killing five persons and injuring a minor.

“All the five persons died on the spot. The minor injured in the incident was rushed to Haflong for treatment,” official sources said.

As panic-stricken residents fled the village, the gunmen set their houses on fire. Fifty-four of the total 58 houses in the village were gutted, the sources said.

They added that senior officials of the district administration rushed to the site to take stock of the situation while police and para military forces cordoned off the entire area and launched a search operation to nab the assailants.

With this, altogether 29 persons have been killed while over 350 houses torched in the ongoing bloodbath in NC Hills. The victims were both Nagas and Dimasas.

In the wake of the violence, the authorities rushed a large number of security personnel to this hill district but they could do very little apparently owing to poor road communication, lack of coordination among the various security wings and the hostile terrains.

The state’s Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi blamed the two factions of Naga insurgents National Socialist Council of Nagalim/Nagaland (NSCN) and the Black Widow for the unrest.

“It is they who are fanning communal passion in the district. There are elements, which are trying to give it an ethnic colour but I must appreciate the Nagas and the Dimasas for maintaining communal harmony despite provocation. It is indeed a good sign that they don’t have any misunderstanding against each other,” the Chief Minister told media persons.

But rubbishing Gogoi’s charge, the Isak-Muivah faction of NSCN said, “We are made the scapegoat as they found none to blame for the incidents.”

“It is unfair on the part of the Chief Minister to put the blame on us. However, this is not the first time,” said NSCN (I-M) leader Phungthing Shimrang.
The Black Widow, when contacted, also washed its hands off the incidents.

Source: Newmai News Network

Indian football captian, Baichung donates Jhalak money for cyclone victims

[Agencies] He set the dance floor on fire, and after winning Sony’s Jhalak Dikhla Jaa III and a prize of Rs 40 lakh, Baichung Bhutia donated Rs 1.5 lakh for the cyclone victims to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund. The Indian football team captain went to the Writers’ Buildings on Monday and met state Urban Development Minister Asok Bhattacharya. The two then met Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and Baichung handed over the cheque to the CM.

“I have given my choreographer Sonia Rs 20 lakh, because I owe this victory to her. The rest I will donate to different trusts. Cyclone Aila has devastated Bengal. It’s time to stand by the victims and I would like to contribute in my small way,” Baichung said. He also urged other footballers to come forward in this moment of crisis.

When asked about cricketers, Baichung side-stepped the question. “Everybody should come forward and offer help,” he replied. [Agencies]

NKorea’s Kim moves to anoint youngest son as heir

SEOUL: North Korean leader Kim Jong-il has signalled the anointment of his youngest son as heir to the ruling family dynasty as the rival Koreas bolstered their militaries along a disputed sea border on Tuesday.

North Korea, whose increasingly military posturing after last week’s nuclear test has prompted US and South Korean forces to raise the alert level, is readying mid-range missiles for test launches, the South’s Yonhap news agency reported a lawmaker as saying after a defence briefing.

The news rattled financial markets in Seoul, adding to worries over reports the impoverished state is preparing to test fire a long-range missile that could fly as far as US territory. The main Seoul index closed slightly down.

Analysts believe that Kim Jong-il, whose power base stems from his support for the military, may be using the growing tension to give him greater leverage over power elites at home to nominate his own successor. It has raised alarm in the region over how far iron ruler Kim, 67 and thought to have suffered a stroke last year, may be prepared to take his latest military grandstanding.

North Korea has asked the country's main bodies and its overseas missions to pledge loyalty to Kim's youngest son Kim Jong-un, various South Korean media outlets quoted informed sources as saying.

"I was notified by the South Korean government of such moves and the loyalty pledges," Park Jie-won, a member of the opposition Democratic Party, said in a statement. He declined to name his source but Yonhap said Park was among a group of lawmakers briefed yesterday night by the country's spy agency about the succession plans. Kim Jong-un, born either in 1983 or early 1984, was educated in Switzerland and intelligence sources have said he appears to be the most capable of Kim's three known sons. Even by North Korea's opaque standards, very little is known about the son, whose youth is a potential problem in a society that adheres closely to the importance of seniority. (Reuters)

Politics | UPA ministry quick facts

* Of the 33 Cabinet ministers, 15 hold a degree in law.
* 11 Cabinet ministers are postgraduates while 16 have completed their graduation.
* Four cabinet ministers including the PM hold a Ph.D., one has an M.Phil. degree and one is a doctor.
* Six Cabinet ministers of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's new team are 'non-believers'. These ministers "solemnly affirmed" that they would bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution while taking oath.
* The 'atheist' ministers are A K Antony, P Chidambaram, Sushil Kumar Shinde, M Veerappa Moily, S Jaipal Reddy and C P Joshi, a first-timer in the cabinet.
* The Prime Minister and 13 of his ministers took the oath in the name of God. The other ministers took oath in the name of God include Pranab Mukherjee, Sharad Pawar, Mamata Banerjee, Vayalar Ravi, S M Krishna, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Kamal Nath, Meira Kumar, Murli Deora, Kapil Sibal, Ambika Soni, B K Handique and Anand Sharma.
* As many as three MPs from the national capital, which is nearly half of the total MPs of Delhi, are in the PM's council of ministers.
* Agatha Sangma is the youngest minister at 28, SM Krishna the oldest at 77.
* The average age of the council of ministers is now a little over 62 years.
* One out of every four UPA MPs is a minister.
* The southern states have a higher MP:Minister ratio than the North.
* Karnataka, with four ministers with 11 UPA MPs.
* Kerala is close with six out of 19.
* Of 35 UPA MPs, Tamil Nadu has nine ministers - most of them from the DMK.
* But DMK chief Karunanidhi's daughter Kanimozhi is not a minister, but son MK Azhagiri is.
* Andhra Pradesh has the least of the southern states with four ministers.
* Vilasrao Deshmukh and SM Krishna are not members of any House.
* Among dropped ministers from last time: Arjun Singh, Shivraj Patil (who had already been dropped post 26/11), Sis Ram Ola, Saifudin Soz, Mahavir Prasad, TR Baalu, Oscar Fernandes, Ashwini Kumar, Santosh Bagrodia.
* Despite the Congress bounty in Haryana, only Kumari Selja makes it to a ministerial post.
* UP, which gave the Congress 21 seats under Rahul Gandhi's party revival plan, has only five ministers, but not a single Cabinet post.
* There are five Muslim ministers.
* There are 10 Dalit ministers.
* There are nine women ministers.
* There are nine former chief ministers in the Cabinet.
* Ally tally: Trinamool Congress seven (one Cabinet, six MoS), DMK even (three Cabinet, four MoS), NCP three (One Cabinet, one MoS Independent Charge and one MoS), Muslim League and NCP one each.
* Four former Indian Youth Congress presidents become ministers - Anand Sharma, Mukul Wasnik, Gurudas Kamat and Selja.
* Most of the younger bunch of ministers are sons and daughters of politicians.

Source: NDTV