Monday, April 30, 2012

Shri Arun Jaitley on Bofors in Rajya Sabha



RE. BOFORS CASE
THE LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION (SHRI ARUN JAITLEY): Mr. Vice-Chairman, Sir, I wish to raise an important issue which is of concern not only to the hon. Members of this House, but also to the entire country. The larger issue is -- I can assure my friends in the Uncorrected/Not for Publication  Government that I have no intention of referring to individuals – what is the capacity of our Indian State and all agencies of the State in pursuit of truth to find out where we have gone wrong? Today, we see in our neighbouring country on the western border, for somewhat similar facts, you almost had earthshaking consequences because the Government of the day did not take certain steps which would bring probity into public life. In India, we have spent 25 years trying to unearth the truth. It is a serious reflection on the health of our entire investigative process, its lack of independence that despite having got conclusive proof, we are unable to nail where the culprits are. I am more concerned really with the health of our investigative agencies than any other political factor. Obviously, we are all concerned with defence preparedness. It is of utmost importance to us that there is transparency in the procurement process. The Government, at some stage, had taken a decision, perhaps, rightly that we must eliminate middlemen so that collateral considerations don't come in. The Government, which took this decision, needs to be complimented for that. Yet, we had, in the mid-90s during a particular purchase, somebody intervening again as middleman. Even when the disclosures were made in 1987, from 1987 till 1989, not even an FIR was registered. In 1990, some steps were taken. Then you have repeated efforts to make sure that this whole process is stalled. I was personally aghast when I came across a question even being raised before our judicial institutions: the CBI is not a lawfully constituted body which can investigate the case. Something as absurd was this and therefore efforts were made to stall this. Fortunately we had interventions of the highest judiciary and the matter proceeded.
SHRI ARUN JAITLEY (contd.): Thereafter, you have, by that process commencing in 1990, India receiving some documents, and in 1999, a comprehensive charge sheet is filed. Sir, when the purchases were taking place, one company which had entered the whole process in October, 1985, was a company called the A.E. Services. Its contract with the Swedish supplier said, “We shall obtain for you the Indian order on or before 31st March, 1986, and only then, we are entitled to kickbacks.” Obviously, this gentleman was very powerful; he could swing the contract. The contract is finally executed on 24th of March, 1986. Who this gentleman was, and the pursuit of truth went on. In 1994, the Swiss Authorities finally informed the Government of India who the recipients were. And, they found that behind this company, the recipient was a gentleman whose name begins with ‘Q’. Within three days, he is allowed to escape the country. This is how the due process is defeated. Why was he so powerful that he could swing the contract? The monies are traced; the account is traced. You don’t need any further conclusive evidence. What did you do when the other Governments were in power? In 1999, a conclusive charge sheet, with entire evidence, is put in. When the United Front Government was in power, the Director, CBI, brought voluminous documents. The Government, in 1999, takes efforts in Malaysia, and the efforts to deport him didn’t succeed. The Government then, after a Friday verdict, moves the Supreme Court in Malaysia on Monday only to be told that he had gone from Malaysia to Argentina. Finally, when the present Government came to power in 2004, he is found out in Argentina. The Ambassador, Mr. Rath, is told, “We don’t want to pursue action against him because the action will be costly.” There were a series of judicial verdicts which scuttled the whole probe. Each one is appealed against and overturned. In 2004, one probe says, “No case is made out”. It is not even appealed against. And we give a whole burial to the case. This is now a sad chapter in history. Nothing more can be done. I do not know if fraud unravels everything, this will be a textbook illustration of a fraud as to how to kill the pursuit to get the truth. And, every time, some disclosure or some interview or some comment comes, it only comes in relation to the facts which are already in; most of them are in public domain. And the facts are very simple. Somebody swung the contract; somebody got the kickbacks. The details of the Swiss Accounts, which are very impossible to get, were obtained. Repeated efforts to cover up were there. And, this man, indeed, was very powerful, and then, he is allowed to escape. He jumps from one jurisdiction to another. And the Indian State looks helpless. You know the truth. You got at it. And you are not able to capture the man. Sir, as I said, initially, my intention is not to embarrass any Government or any party or any individual. But, is it not a case that we introspect that how easy it has become for people who indulge in this kind of activities to get away? You need friendly Governments. You need investigative agencies which have become utterly non-professional. The pace of investigation varies with the political colour of the Government in power. It slows down with the colour of the Government in power. And we prided ourselves when we looked at our Western neighbour, “Look, what a great democracy we are, the largest in the world, and where are you!” And, today is the date, and there can’t be a better day than this to introspect what they are doing in pursuit of a similar truth and how helpless we are looking at this. My intention, Sir, was only to draw the attention of the House to this hard reality.

A WORD OF CAUTION FOR INDIA

A WORD OF CAUTION FOR INDIA
A recent addition to my personal library is a glossy, picture book titled – “100 CITIES OF THE WORLD : A journey through the most fascinating cities around the globe.”
As I glanced through the Contents listing the hundred, Continent-wise, I was struck by the fact that India’s capital, Delhi, was not included in this list. The two Indian cities mentioned in the Asian tally of twenty two were Kolkata and Mumbai.
copy-of-ruchirFor Indian readers, a more interesting addition to my library this week is a thought provoking book by Ruchir Sharma, head of Emerging Market Equities and Global Macro at Morgan Stanley Investment Management. In this book titled Breakout Nations, the author, who is based in New York, affirms that “the astonishingly rapid growth over the last decade of the world’s celebrated emerging markets is coming to an end. The era of easy money and easy growth is over. China, in particular, will soon slow, but its place will not necessarily be taken by Brazil, Russia or India, all of which have weaknesses and difficulties often overlooked in the inflated expectations and emerging markets mania of the past decade.”
This book identifies “graft driven inflation” and “crony capitalism” among the weaknesses and difficulties that can be a damper for India’s high expectations.
Referring at some length to the series of scams that have surfaced during the U.P.A. regime the author writes that when he wrote about this for a Newsweek cover story he was dubbed a party spoiler. Top government officials told Sharma, “such cronyism is just a normal step in development, citing the example of the robber barons of nineteenth century America.” “Prime Minister Singh, asked privately about the corruption problem, supposedly told people not to spoil India’s image by going on and on about this.”
This particular chapter dealing with our problems starts with Europe’s nineteenth century fascination with India’s well-known magic show, the Rope trick. The caption significantly given to the chapter is “The Great Indian Hope Trick”!
Referring to the increasing investment by Indian entrepreneurs abroad, Ruchir Sharma writes:
“As soon as companies from emerging nations start expanding their interests abroad, it is usually celebrated as a giant step for the whole country. But in India the moves suggest that many companies are going abroad in part to avoid the problems of doing business in the home market. Lately businessmen in Delhi and Mumbai have been complaining ever more bitterly that the cost of starting new businesses in India has gone up dramatically over time because of the sharp increase in the number of demands for government payoffs. Investment by Indian business has declined from 17 percent of GDP in 2008 to 13 percent now.
“At a time when India needs its businessmen to reinvest more aggressively at home in order for the country to hit its growth target of 8 to 9 percent (foreign investment is well below the required totals), they are looking abroad. Overseas operations of all Indian companies now account for more than 10 percent of overall corporate profitability, compared with just 2 percent five years ago. Given the potential of the domestic marketplace, Indian companies should not need to chase growth abroad. (In 2010 more than a third of Indian households had, by local standards, a middle-class income equal to between $2,000 and $4,200, up from 22 percent in 2002½ But just over half the earnings of India’s top-fifty companies are now ‘outward facing’ or dependent on exports, global commodity prices, and international acquisitions.”
In his latest interaction however, with a group of eminent economic thinkers (reported in today’s Indian Express), Ruchir Sharma has been more optimistic about India.
***
A sector in particularly bad shape these days is the airlines sector. You talk to any section of the Air India staff - pilots, airhostesses, or any other - and you will hear endless complaints. And this is in an airline which when I first traveled on when I become an M.P. way back in 1970, had an excellent reputation all around the globe. Even private airlines like Kingfisher are facing a serious crisis.
So, it was a delight to learn that the newly constructed Indira Gandhi International Airport has been reckoned as the sixth best airport in the world, and in a certain specific category the second best. The evaluation has been done by the Airports Council International, a worldwide association of airports having 575 members operating over 1633 airports in 179 countries.
Passing through this newly built airport which caters both to domestic as well as foreign services, I was impressed by a beautifully sculpted tableau of the twelve postures which add up to the well known Yoga exercise of Surya Namaskar. The sculptor, I discovered, is one Ayush Kasliwal of Jaipur. Hearty compliments to G. Subba Rao of G.M.R. who must have conceived it, and the artist who has executed it.
It did remind me of the rumpus raised by some perverse politicos when Shivraj Singh Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh initiated a massive programme of Surya Namaskar in the schools of the state. Those objecting to the exercise said that the State Government’s proposal was anti-secular. It is believed that since January this year lakhs of students in more than 6000 schools have been doing Surya Namaskar in the state.
surya-namaskar
TAILPIECE
This blog begins with a reference to Ruchir Sharma’s book Breakout Nations. The prologue to this book is a caustic comment on the sort of vulgar decadence that seems to be infecting the life style of the affluent here. Sample these opening paragraphs:
It’s been a long time since the farmers left the “farmhouses” of Delhi, and though the name lives on, it now describes the weekend retreats of the upper class, playgrounds on the fringes of the city where unmapped dirt lanes wind through poor villages and suddenly open onto lavish mansions with sprawling gardens and water features; in one case I even came upon a garden with a mini-railroad running through it. This is the “Hamptons” of Delhi, the city’s party central, where event planners will re-create Oscar night, Broadway, Las Vegas, even a Punjabi village for the home-sick, complete with waiters in ethnic garb.
On a foggy night in late 2010 I made my way to one of these famously decadent bashes, where the valets were juggling black Bentleys and red Porsches, and the hosts invited me to try the Kobe beef they had flown in from Japan, the white truffles from Italy, the beluga caviar from Azerbaijan. It was hard to talk over the pulsating techno-beat, but I managed to engage in a chat with a twenty - something son of the farmhouse demimonde – he was a classic of the type, working for his dad’s export business (it always seems to be “exports”), wearing a tight black shirt, hair spiky with grooming gel. After determining that I was a New York – based investor back in town to search for investment opportunities, he shrugged and remarked, “Well, of course. Where else will the money go?”
“Where else will the money go?” I left the Party around midnight, well before the main course was served, but the comment stayed with me.
L.K. Advani
New Delhi
April 30, 2012

विभीषण नहीं, अन्ना हजारे का भक्त हूं : कासमी

बिजनौर। अन्ना की कोर कमेटी से निष्कासन के बाद बिजनौर लौटे मुफ्ती शमऊन कासमी ने कहा कि वह अन्ना का सम्मान करते हैं और भ्रष्टाचार के विरोधी उनकी मुहिम से जुडे़ रहेंगे। उन्हें राजनीति से भी कोई परहेज नहीं है।


जासूसी के आरोप में 22 अप्रैल को अन्ना की कोर कमेटी से निकाले गए बिजनौर निवासी मुफ्ती शमऊन कासमी का कहना है कि वह 'विभीषण' नहीं, बल्कि अन्ना के भक्त हैं। उन पर लगाए गये आरोप बेबुनियाद हैं। उन्होंने कोर कमेटी से हटने का खुद ही फैसला लिया है। अरविंद केजरीवाल, मनीष सिसौदिया, किरन बेदी व प्रशांत भूषण ने अन्ना को कैप्चर कर रखा है। वह अन्ना का सम्मान करते हैं, लेकिन ये चारों जनता के पैसे का बंदरबांट कर रहे हैं। उनके संघ अथवा किसी भी राजनैतिक दल से संबंध नहीं हैं। एक सवाल के जवाब में कहा कि सपा सुप्रीमो मुलायम सिंह यादव से हवाई जहाज में मुलाकात अचानक हुई थी। मेरठ में शनिवार को सपा नेता अरशद मक्की के घर प्रेस वार्ता करने पर कहा कि उनसे पुराने संबंध हैं। उन्हें भी राजनीति से कोई परहेज नहीं है। प्रदेश के मुख्यमंत्री अखिलेश यादव से बहुत आशाएं हैं। मुफ्ती शमऊन कासमी का कहना था कि वह एक सप्ताह तक अज्ञातवास में नहीं रहे, बल्कि इस अवधि के दौरान दिल्ली में धार्मिक नेताओं से भेंट की और भ्रष्टाचार खत्म करने में सहयोग की अपील की। वह देवबंद दारूल उलूम के वाइस चांसलर व लखनऊ में धार्मिक नेताओं से मुलाकात करेंगे। उन्होंने कहा कि कोर कमेटी की बैठक से बाहर आने के बाद वह विचलित हो गये थे। इसलिए वह भूलवश कह गये कि मुस्लिम होने के कारण ही उन पर आरोप लगाये गये हैं, जबकि वह यह कहना चाहते थे कि कमेटी में किसी मुस्लिम के न होने पर विपरीत प्रभाव पडे़गा।

China launches two navigation satellites




 

BEIJING: China on Monday successfully launched two more satellites for its proposed Beidou global navigation and positioning network being built to counter the US Global Position System (GPS).
With the two, China has so far launched 13 satellites to form part of the Beidou system.
The Beidou-2 satellites, launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre in the south-western province of Sichuan, was boosted by a Long March-3B carrier rocket and has entered the scheduled orbit, the centre said in a statement.
It is the first time China has launched two navigation satellites with one rocket, and the two satellites will help to improve the accuracy of the Beidou, or Compass system, it said.
China will launch three more satellites for the Beidou network this year and a global satellite positioning and navigation system will be completed in 2020 with more than 30 orbiters, it said.
Monday’s mission marked the 160th flight of China’s Long March series of carrier rockets, state-run Xinhua reported.

The Syrian unrest suicide bombing in Damascus

Iran on Saturday condemned a deadly suicide bombing in Damascus, charging that such "terrorist actions" were the work of foreign governments that wanted to arm the Syrian opposition.Iran "condemns terrorist act that resulted in killing and injuring Syrian people and also condemns foreign intervention," the deputy foreign minister in charge of Arab and African affairs, Hossein Amirabdolahian, said in a statement posted on his ministry's website."The parties who back sending weapons to Syria are responsible for killing innocent people. Some parties, by sending weapons and (committing) terrorist actions in this country, are pursuing their own specific goals," he said. State media said at least 11 people died and 28 were wounded in yesterday's suicide bombing which hit worshippers leaving a mosque after the main weekly prayers.The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said two civilians died. Syria is the chief Middle East ally of Iran, which has pledged its support to beleaguered President Bashar al-Assad.The persistent bloodshed has endangered a hard-won truce brokered by international peace envoy Kofi Annan even before the full deployment of a promised 300-strong UN military observer mission.Amirabdolahian stressed in his statement that the solution to the Syrian unrest should be a "solely political one" that incorporates reforms promised by Assad. "Some parties consider themselves above the UN and its special envoy's plan and are trying to impose their will with hasty actions," he said, in another swipe at countries that have argued in favour of arming the Syrian opposition.Amirabdolahian did not name them but Iran's Gulf Arab rivals Qatar and Saudi Arabia have been among the most outspoken champions of arming the rebels, although both governments insist they are not yet doing so. US officials have voiced suspicion that Iran is supplying Assad's regime with weapons and military advisers, but Tehran has denied

Islamists march to Egypt Defence Ministry
Hundreds of Islamist protesters marched on to Egypt's Defence Ministry, denouncing the ruling military council and demanding that officials of the Hosni Mubarak regime be disallowed from the presidential race. The protesters included supporters of the disqualified Salafist candidate Hazem Salah Abu Ismail, whose candidature was ruled out on grounds that his mother had been given an American citizenship. Abu Ismail warned last night of "unknown reactions" of his backers to what they see as "injustice" over his exclusion from the presidential race.>His comments came shortly after thousands of protesters, mostly his supporters, marched at midnight to Egypt's Defence Ministry, chanting slogans against Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi. <"Down with the military council," shouted demonstrators, calling on the generals who took over from Mubarak step down.>There has been an increasing perception among the people in Egypt that the ruling military may try to get a loyalist elected as the next president. The election commission announced the final list of 13 candidates for the presidential election on Thursday after disqualifying 10 candidates. >While two top Islamist candidates were disqualified, the candidature of Ahmed Shafiq, who served as prime minister in the deposed Mubarak regime during last year's uprising, was upheld.Abu Ismail's supporters have staged a sit-in in Tahrir Square for more than a week now, protesting the Elections Commission's decision to disqualify him from the race after proving that his late mother had obtained an American nationality.The protesters have demanded the dissolution of the elections commission. The military police blocked the roads to the Defence Ministry but the protesters, estimated to be around 2,000, stayed overnight near the ministry, according to Al-Masry Al-Youm.In a poetic post on Facebook, Abu Ismail wrote, "People feel that injustice blocks the road against them. This makes them leave their homes and beds and respond to the calls to break the chains". Before his disqualification, Abu Ismail had emerged as one of the most popular presidential candidates. His simplistic rhetoric over following the Sharia and defending citizens' dignity attracted much support. This month an opinion poll by Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies showed that before his exclusion Abu Ismail had topped the presidential race with 26 per cent of votes, while Hosni Mubarak's spy chief Omar Suleiman, also since excluded, garnered 21 per cent of the votes

Antony meets Karuna on Prez poll and to report to Sonia



Official media reports Congress leader and Defence Minister A K Antony on Sunday met DMK chief M Karunanidhi as part of consultation process among UPA allies on the Presidential election to arrive at a consensus leader to succeed incumbent Pratibha Patil, who is retiring on 25th July.
After more than an hour-long meeting, Antony told reporters that he would convey the DMK leader's views on the issue to Congress President Sonia Gandhi.
"It was a very, very fruitful meeting. I will report to the Congress President whatever he said", he told reporters, refusing to disclose details about his discussion.
Observing that Gandhi had asked him to meet the DMK chief to discuss about the "present political situation", he said "What we discussed, I will convey to the Congress President".
He said Karunanidhi is one of the seniormost leaders in the country and "we always value his advice".Antony's meeting with Karunanidhi comes close on the heels of Agriculture Minister and NCP leader Sharad Pawar's consultation with the Congress President a few days ago.

Finance Minister calls for need to empower people with skills and capabilities for continuous and inclusive growth; Releases Logo for 46th Annual Meeting of Board of Governors of ADB; India to host the next ADB Annual Meeting in Delhi in May, 2013 The Union Finance Minister, Shri Pranab Mukherjee said that if Asia has to continue growing rapidly, its path of development needs to be inclusive and people need to be empowered with skills and capabilities that will enable them shape their own lives. The Finance Minister said that we believe in sustaining high and inclusive growth in Asia; and to ensure that requires policies and programs designed with a focus on empowerment. The Union Finance Minister Shri Pranab Mukherjee was speaking after formally announcing that India will host the next Annual Meeting of Asian Development Bank (ADB) i.e.46th Annual Meeting of Board of Governors of the Asian Development Bank on May 2-5, 2013 in New Delhi. He also unveiled on this occasion the special logo titled “Web of Life” created for the said Meeting. This logo for the Annual Meeting of ADB represents the web of life which is based on the tribal motifs of central India which signifies the cycle of life. The logo has been designed by the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad. Shri R.Gopalan, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Dr Kaushik Basu, Chief Economic Adviser, representatives of CII, FICCI and ASSOCHAM and senior officials of the Ministry of Finance were also present on the occasion.

The 46th Annual Meeting of Board of Governors of the Asian Development Bank is expected to see the visits of official delegations from 67 countries, where the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors of different countries usually lead the country delegations. A large gathering of approximately 4000 people including delegates from different countries, economists, investment bankers, corporate leaders, Nobel laureates, Civil Society, media etc. are expected to participate in the event in 2013.

This would be the third time that India would be hosting the Annual Meeting; the first time was in 1990 at Delhi and the second time in 2006 at Hyderabad. The venue for the 2013 Annual Meeting would be India Expo Mart, Greater Noida. Given the size and scope of the event, the Government of India has invited Industry Associations (CII, ASSOCHAM and FICCI) to partner in the organization of the event. This is the first time that such a Public Private Partnership approach has been adopted for an event of this scale in India.

Speaking on the occasion, the Union Finance Minister, Shri Pranab Mukherjee said that ADB has been a valued multilateral partner in India’s journey towards economic development and growth. He said that the theme for the Annual Meeting is “Development through Empowerment”. This theme encompasses issues that are critical for sustaining high and inclusive growth in Asia. This theme reflects the development strategy of India, namely, empowerment backed by legal entitlement and encompasses issues that are critical for sustaining high and inclusive growth in Asia, the Finance Minister added.

Speaking at this special function, the Union Finance Minister Shri Pranab Mukherjee said that the Annual Meeting of ADB will provide a valuable opportunity for brainstorming and cross fertilization of ideas amongst intellectuals and policy makers from across Asia and the World. He said that India’s association with the ADB dates back to 1966 and is a founder member of this multilateral institution. ADB’s lending operations in India commenced two decades later in 1986, and India has just completed 25 years of partnership with ADB. Shri Mukherjee further said that this will help bring countries of Asia closer to each other and also facilitate the formulation of policies that can lead us towards greater prosperity and well being.

The Union Finance Minister Shri Pranab Mukherjee said that the rapid growth of emerging market economies in Asia has been a noteworthy feature of the global economy in recent years. Led by China, India and several other Asian countries, this dynamism makes Asia the world’s most vibrant region contributing close to 50 per cent of world growth, the Finance Minister added. He further said that Asian countries have transformed themselves from primarily agricultural and resource based economies to industrial and increasingly services based economies in less than half a century.Shri Mukherjee said that Asia’s high growth over the last several decades has improved lives and lifted millions out of poverty.

Later speaking on behalf of the Industry, Shri Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII said that Industry is privileged to be part of this very prestigious event and would extend all support to ensure that the event is commensurate with India’s stature in the world today.

Ex- US toxic ship entry in Indian waters challenged in Supreme Court

New Delhi 27/4/2012: An application has been filed in Supreme Court in the matter of a hazardous end-of-life vessel named 'Oriental Nicety' (formerly Exxon Valdez, Exxon Mediterranean, Sea River Mediterranean, S/R Mediterranean, Mediterranean, and Dong Fang Ocean) which has been purchased by Best Oasis Company, (a subsidiary of Priya Blue Industries Pvt Ltd) in the Indian waters in the name of dismantling and recycling. The minutes of the court constituted Inter-ministerial committee (IMC) on shipbreaking and a sensitive document that has been filed in the court reveal the repeated security concerns which remain unaddressed.

The hazardous wastes/shipbreaking case Writ Petition (Civil) 657/1995 is coming up for hearing on May 3, 2012.

The following are the prayers in the application.

A relevant sensitive document (that is corroborated by recent minutes of IMC's 14th meeting dated February 2012) is
(i) Direct the Union of India to ensure that no end-of-life ship should be allowed without prior decontamination in the country of export as per this Hon’ble Court’s order dated October 14, 2003,

(ii) Direct the Union of India to send back all hazardous wastes laden end-of-life ships entering/ or have entered the Indian territorial waters without prior informed consent and without prior decontamination keeping in view the environmental principles,
(iii) Direct inquiry by an independent trans-disciplinary investigating agency to ascertain the circumstances of the dead US ship’s arrival in Indian territorial waters, to make concerned officials accountable for their acts of omission and commission and seek a detailed report on more than 1200 ships broken in last 5 years and more than 5924 ships broken since 1982;
(iv) Direct Union of India to ensure compliance with the recommendations of the Hon'ble Court constituted Inter-ministerial committee (IMC) on ship-breaking

The illegal traffic of this dead ship must be stopped besides investigating the possibility of fake documents which came to light in the earlier case of Platinum II, a US ship. The Ministry of Environment & Forests has invoked the Precautionary Principle and directed that granting permission for beaching and breaking, purposes of the ship will not be advisable in the case of Platinum II. It may be mentioned that precautionary principle is the basis of UN conventions, such as Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal, Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade and Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). India is a signatory to these conventions and has ratified them as well. The ex-Exxon Valdez is violating these international laws besides the court's order.

For Details: Gopal Krishna, ToxicsWatch Alliance (TWA), New Delhi, New Delhi, Phone: +91-11-2651781, Fax: +91-11-26517814, Mb: 9818089660, E-mail: krishna1715@gmail.com, Web: toxicswatch.blogspot.com

नकली नोट रिसर्व बैंक और सरकार

देश के रिज़र्व बैंक के वाल्ट पर सीबीआई ने छापा डाला. उसे वहां पांच सौ और हज़ार रुपये के नक़ली नोट मिले. वरिष्ठ अधिकारियों से सीबीआई ने पूछताछ भी की. दरअसल सीबीआई ने नेपाल-भारत सीमा के साठ से सत्तर विभिन्न बैंकों की शाखाओं पर छापा डाला था, जहां से नक़ली नोटों का कारोबार चल रहा था. इन बैंकों के अधिकारियों ने सीबीआई से कहा कि उन्हें ये नक़ली नोट भारत के रिजर्व बैंक से मिल रहे हैं. इस पूरी घटना को भारत सरकार ने देश से और देश की संसद से छुपा लिया. या शायद सीबीआई ने भारत सरकार को इस घटना के बारे में कुछ बताया ही नहीं. देश अंधेरे में और देश को तबाह करने वाले रोशनी में हैं. आइए, आपको आज़ाद भारत के सबसे बड़े आपराधिक षड्‌यंत्र के बारे में बताते हैं, जिसे हमने पांच महीने की तलाश के बाद आपके सामने रखने का फ़ैसला किया है. कहानी है रिज़र्व बैंक के माध्यम से देश के अपराधियों द्वारा नक़ली नोटों का कारोबार करने की.


नक़ली नोटों के कारोबार ने देश की अर्थव्यवस्था को पूरी तरह अपने जाल में जकड़ लिया है. आम जनता के हाथों में नक़ली नोट हैं, पर उसे ख़बर तक नहीं है. बैंक में नक़ली नोट मिल रहे हैं, एटीएम नक़ली नोट उगल रहे हैं. असली-नक़ली नोट पहचानने वाली मशीन नक़ली नोट को असली बता रही है. इस देश में क्या हो रहा है, यह समझ के बाहर है. चौथी दुनिया की तहक़ीक़ात से यह पता चला है कि जो कंपनी भारत के लिए करेंसी छापती रही, वही 500 और 1000 के नक़ली नोट भी छाप रही है. हमारी तहक़ीक़ात से यह अंदेशा होता है कि देश की सरकार और रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया जाने-अनजाने में नोट छापने वाली विदेशी कंपनी के पार्टनर बन चुके हैं. अब सवाल यही है कि इस ख़तरनाक साज़िश पर देश की सरकार और एजेंसियां क्यों चुप हैं?


एक जानकारी जो पूरे देश से छुपा ली गई, अगस्त 2010 में सीबीआई की टीम ने रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया के वाल्ट में छापा मारा. सीबीआई के अधिकारियों का दिमाग़ उस समय सन्न रह गया, जब उन्हें पता चला कि रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया के ख़ज़ाने में नक़ली नोट हैं. रिज़र्व बैंक से मिले नक़ली नोट वही नोट थे, जिसे पाकिस्तान की खु़फिया एजेंसी नेपाल के रास्ते भारत भेज रही है. सवाल यह है कि भारत के रिजर्व बैंक में नक़ली नोट कहां से आए? क्या आईएसआई की पहुंच रिज़र्व बैंक की तिजोरी तक है या फिर कोई बहुत ही भयंकर साज़िश है, जो हिंदुस्तान की अर्थव्यवस्था को खोखला कर चुकी है. सीबीआई इस सनसनीखेज मामले की तहक़ीक़ात कर रही है. छह बैंक कर्मचारियों से सीबीआई ने पूछताछ भी की है. इतने महीने बीत जाने के बावजूद किसी को यह पता नहीं है कि जांच में क्या निकला? सीबीआई और वित्त मंत्रालय को देश को बताना चाहिए कि बैंक अधिकारियों ने जांच के दौरान क्या कहा? नक़ली नोटों के इस ख़तरनाक खेल पर सरकार, संसद और जांच एजेंसियां क्यों चुप है तथा संसद अंधेरे में क्यों है?


अब सवाल यह है कि सीबीआई को मुंबई के रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया में छापा मारने की ज़रूरत क्यों पड़ी? रिजर्व बैंक से पहले नेपाल बॉर्डर से सटे बिहार और उत्तर प्रदेश के क़रीब 70-80 बैंकों में छापा पड़ा. इन बैंकों में इसलिए छापा पड़ा, क्योंकि जांच एजेंसियों को ख़बर मिली है कि पाकिस्तान की खु़फ़िया एजेंसी आईएसआई नेपाल के रास्ते भारत में नक़ली नोट भेज रही है. बॉर्डर के इलाक़े के बैंकों में नक़ली नोटों का लेन-देन हो रहा है. आईएसआई के रैकेट के ज़रिए 500 रुपये के नोट 250 रुपये में बेचे जा रहे हैं. छापे के दौरान इन बैंकों में असली नोट भी मिले और नक़ली नोट भी. जांच एजेंसियों को लगा कि नक़ली नोट नेपाल के ज़रिए बैंक तक पहुंचे हैं, लेकिन जब पूछताछ हुई तो सीबीआई के होश उड़ गए. कुछ बैंक अधिकारियों की पकड़-धकड़ हुई. ये बैंक अधिकारी रोने लगे, अपने बच्चों की कसमें खाने लगे. उन लोगों ने बताया कि उन्हें नक़ली नोटों के बारे में कोई जानकारी नहीं, क्योंकि ये नोट रिजर्व बैंक से आए हैं. यह किसी एक बैंक की कहानी होती तो इसे नकारा भी जा सकता था, लेकिन हर जगह यही पैटर्न मिला. यहां से मिली जानकारी के बाद ही सीबीआई ने फ़ैसला लिया कि अगर नक़ली नोट रिजर्व बैंक से आ रहे हैं तो वहीं जाकर देखा जाए कि मामला क्या है. सीबीआई ऱिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया पहुंची, यहां उसे नक़ली नोट मिले. हैरानी की बात यह है कि रिज़र्व बैंक में मिले नक़ली नोट वही नोट थे, जिन्हें आईएसआई नेपाल के ज़रिए भारत भेजती है.


रिज़र्व बैंक आफ इंडिया में नक़ली नोट कहां से आए, इस गुत्थी को समझने के लिए बिहार और उत्तर प्रदेश में नक़ली नोटों के मामले को समझना ज़रूरी है. दरअसल हुआ यह कि आईएसआई की गतिविधियों की वजह से यहां आएदिन नक़ली नोट पकड़े जाते हैं. मामला अदालत पहुंचता है. बहुत सारे केसों में वकीलों ने अनजाने में जज के सामने यह दलील दी कि पहले यह तो तय हो जाए कि ये नोट नक़ली हैं. इन वकीलों को शायद जाली नोट के कारोबार के बारे में कोई अंदाज़ा नहीं था, स़िर्फ कोर्ट से व़क्त लेने के लिए उन्होंने यह दलील दी थी. कोर्ट ने जब्त हुए नोटों को जांच के लिए सरकारी लैब भेज दिया, ताकि यह तय हो सके कि ज़ब्त किए गए नोट नक़ली हैं. रिपोर्ट आती है कि नोट असली हैं. मतलब यह कि असली और नक़ली नोटों के कागज, इंक, छपाई और सुरक्षा चिन्ह सब एक जैसे हैं. जांच एजेंसियों के होश उड़ गए कि अगर ये नोट असली हैं तो फिर 500 का नोट 250 में क्यों बिक रहा है. उन्हें तसल्ली नहीं हुई. फिर इन्हीं नोटों को टोक्यो और हांगकांग की लैब में भेजा गया. वहां से भी रिपोर्ट आई कि ये नोट असली हैं. फिर इन्हें अमेरिका भेजा गया. नक़ली नोट कितने असली हैं, इसका पता तब चला, जब अमेरिका की एक लैब ने यह कहा कि ये नोट नक़ली हैं. लैब ने यह भी कहा कि दोनों में इतनी समानताएं हैं कि जिन्हें पकड़ना मुश्किल है और जो विषमताएं हैं, वे भी जानबूझ कर डाली गई हैं और नोट बनाने वाली कोई बेहतरीन कंपनी ही ऐसे नोट बना सकती है. अमेरिका की लैब ने जांच एजेंसियों को पूरा प्रूव दे दिया और तरीक़ा बताया कि कैसे नक़ली नोटों को पहचाना जा सकता है. इस लैब ने बताया कि इन नक़ली नोटों में एक छोटी सी जगह है, जहां छेड़छाड़ हुई है. इसके बाद ही नेपाल बॉर्डर से सटे बैंकों में छापेमारी का सिलसिला शुरू हुआ. नक़ली नोटों की पहचान हो गई, लेकिन एक बड़ा सवाल खड़ा हो गया कि नेपाल से आने वाले 500 एवं 1000 के नोट और रिज़र्व बैंक में मिलने वाले नक़ली नोट एक ही तरह के कैसे हैं. जिस नक़ली नोट को आईएसआई भेज रही है, वही नोट रिजर्व बैंक में कैसे आया. दोनों जगह पकड़े गए नक़ली नोटों के काग़ज़, इंक और छपाई एक जैसी क्यों है. एक्सपर्ट्स बताते हैं कि भारत के 500 और 1000 के जो नोट हैं, उनकी क्वालिटी ऐसी है, जिसे आसानी से नहीं बनाया जा सकता है और पाकिस्तान के पास वह टेक्नोलॉजी है ही नहीं. इससे यही निष्कर्ष निकलता है कि जहां से ये नक़ली नोट आईएसआई को मिल रहे हैं, वहीं से रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया को भी सप्लाई हो रहे हैं. अब दो ही बातें हो सकती हैं. यह जांच एजेंसियों को तय करना है कि रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया के अधिकारियों की मिलीभगत से नक़ली नोट आया या फिर हमारी अर्थव्यवस्था ही अंतरराष्ट्रीय मा़फ़िया गैंग की साज़िश का शिकार हो गई है. अब सवाल उठता है कि ये नक़ली नोट छापता कौन है.


हमारी तहक़ीक़ात डे ला रू नाम की कंपनी तक पहुंच गई. जो जानकारी हासिल हुई, उससे यह साबित होता है कि नक़ली नोटों के कारोबार की जड़ में यही कंपनी है. डे ला रू कंपनी का सबसे बड़ा करार रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया के साथ था, जिसे यह स्पेशल वॉटरमार्क वाला बैंक नोट पेपर सप्लाई करती रही है. पिछले कुछ समय से इस कंपनी में भूचाल आया हुआ है. जब रिजर्व बैंक में छापा पड़ा तो डे ला रू के शेयर लुढ़क गए. यूरोप में ख़राब करेंसी नोटों की सप्लाई का मामला छा गया. इस कंपनी ने रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया को कुछ ऐसे नोट दे दिए, जो असली नहीं थे. रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया की टीम इंग्लैंड गई, उसने डे ला रू कंपनी के अधिकारियों से बातचीत की. नतीजा यह हुआ कि कंपनी ने हम्प्शायर की अपनी यूनिट में उत्पादन और आगे की शिपमेंट बंद कर दी. डे ला रू कंपनी के अधिकारियों ने भरोसा दिलाने की बहुत कोशिश की, लेकिन रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया ने यह कहा कि कंपनी से जुड़ी कई गंभीर चिंताएं हैं. अंग्रेजी में कहें तो सीरियस कंसर्नस. टीम वापस भारत आ गई.


डे ला रू कंपनी की 25 फीसदी कमाई भारत से होती है. इस ख़बर के आते ही डे ला रू कंपनी के शेयर धराशायी हो गए. यूरोप में हंगामा मच गया, लेकिन हिंदुस्तान में न वित्त मंत्री ने कुछ कहा, न ही रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया ने कोई बयान दिया. रिज़र्व बैंक के प्रतिनिधियों ने जो चिंताएं बताईं, वे चिंताएं कैसी हैं. इन चिंताओं की गंभीरता कितनी है. रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया के साथ डील बचाने के लिए कंपनी ने माना कि भारत के रिज़र्व बैंक को दिए जा रहे करेंसी पेपर के उत्पादन में जो ग़लतियां हुईं, वे गंभीर हैं. बाद में कंपनी के चीफ एक्जीक्यूटिव जेम्स हसी को 13 अगस्त, 2010 को इस्ती़फा देना पड़ा. ये ग़लतियां क्या हैं, सरकार चुप क्यों है, रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया क्यों ख़ामोश है. मज़ेदार बात यह है कि कंपनी के अंदर इस बात को लेकर जांच चल रही थी और एक हमारी संसद है, जिसे कुछ पता नहीं है.


5 जनवरी, 2011 को यह ख़बर आई कि भारत सरकार ने डे ला रू के साथ अपने संबंध ख़त्म कर लिए. पता यह चला कि 16,000 टन करेंसी पेपर के लिए रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया ने डे ला रू की चार प्रतियोगी कंपनियों को ठेका दे दिया. रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया ने डे ला रू को इस टेंडर में हिस्सा लेने के लिए आमंत्रित भी नहीं किया. रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया और भारत सरकार ने इतना बड़ा फै़सला क्यों लिया. इस फै़सले के पीछे तर्क क्या है. सरकार ने संसद को भरोसे में क्यों नहीं लिया. 28 जनवरी को डे ला रू कंपनी के टिम कोबोल्ड ने यह भी कहा कि रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया के साथ उनकी बातचीत चल रही है, लेकिन उन्होंने यह नहीं बताया कि डे ला रू का अब आगे रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया के साथ कोई समझौता होगा या नहीं. इतना सब कुछ हो जाने के बाद भी डे ला रू से कौन बात कर रहा है और क्यों बात कर रहा है. मज़ेदार बात यह है कि इस पूरे घटनाक्रम के दौरान रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया ख़ामोश रहा.


इस तहक़ीक़ात के दौरान एक सनसनीखेज सच सामने आया. डे ला रू कैश सिस्टम इंडिया प्राइवेट लिमिटेड को 2005 में सरकार ने दफ्तर खोलने की अनुमति दी. यह कंपनी करेंसी पेपर के अलावा पासपोर्ट, हाई सिक्योरिटी पेपर, सिक्योरिटी प्रिंट, होलोग्राम और कैश प्रोसेसिंग सोल्यूशन में डील करती है. यह भारत में असली और नक़ली नोटों की पहचान करने वाली मशीन भी बेचती है. मतलब यह है कि यही कंपनी नक़ली नोट भारत भेजती है और यही कंपनी नक़ली नोटों की जांच करने वाली मशीन भी लगाती है. शायद यही वजह है कि देश में नक़ली नोट भी मशीन में असली नज़र आते हैं. इस मशीन के सॉफ्टवेयर की अभी तक जांच नहीं की गई है, किसके इशारे पर और क्यों? जांच एजेंसियों को अविलंब ऐसी मशीनों को जब्त करना चाहिए, जो नक़ली नोटों को असली बताती हैं. सरकार को इस बात की जांच करनी चाहिए कि डे ला रू कंपनी के रिश्ते किन-किन आर्थिक संस्थानों से हैं. नोटों की जांच करने वाली मशीन की सप्लाई कहां-कहां हुई है.


हमारी जांच टीम को एक सूत्र ने बताया कि डे ला रू कंपनी का मालिक इटालियन मा़िफया के साथ मिलकर भारत के नक़ली नोटों का रैकेट चला रहा है. पाकिस्तान में आईएसआई या आतंकवादियों के पास जो नक़ली नोट आते हैं, वे सीधे यूरोप से आते हैं. भारत सरकार, रिज़र्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया और देश की जांच एजेंसियां अब तक नक़ली नोटों पर नकेल इसलिए नहीं कस पाई हैं, क्योंकि जांच एजेंसियां अब तक इस मामले में पाकिस्तान, हांगकांग, नेपाल और मलेशिया से आगे नहीं देख पा रही हैं. जो कुछ यूरोप में हो रहा है, उस पर हिंदुस्तान की सरकार और रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया चुप है.


अब सवाल उठता है कि जब देश की सबसे अहम एजेंसी ने इसे राष्ट्रीय सुरक्षा का मुद्दा बताया, तब सरकार ने क्या किया. जब डे ला रू ने नक़ली नोट सप्लाई किए तो संसद को क्यों नहीं बताया गया. डे ला रू के साथ जब क़रार ़खत्म कर चार नई कंपनियों के साथ क़रार हुए तो विपक्ष को क्यों पता नहीं चला. क्या संसद में उन्हीं मामलों पर चर्चा होगी, जिनकी रिपोर्ट मीडिया में आती है. अगर जांच एजेंसियां ही कह रही हैं कि नक़ली नोट का काग़ज़ असली नोट के जैसा है तो फिर सप्लाई करने वाली कंपनी डे ला रू पर कार्रवाई क्यों नहीं हुई. सरकार को किसके आदेश का इंतजार है. समझने वाली बात यह है कि एक हज़ार नोटों में से दस नोट अगर जाली हैं तो यह स्थिति देश की वित्तीय व्यवस्था को तबाह कर सकती है. हमारे देश में एक हज़ार नोटों में से कितने नोट जाली हैं, यह पता कर पाना भी मुश्किल है, क्योंकि जाली नोट अब हमारे बैंकों और एटीएम मशीनों से निकल रहे हैं.
डे ला रू का नेपाल और आई एस आई कनेक्शन


कंधार हाईजैक की कहानी बहुत पुरानी हो गई है, लेकिन इस अध्याय का एक ऐसा पहलू है, जो अब तक दुनिया की नज़र से छुपा हुआ है. इस खउ-814 में एक ऐसा शख्स बैठा था, जिसके बारे में सुनकर आप दंग रह जाएंगे. इस आदमी को दुनिया भर में करेंसी किंग के नाम से जाना जाता है. इसका असली नाम है रोबेर्टो ग्योरी. यह इस जहाज में दो महिलाओं के साथ स़फर कर रहा था. दोनों महिलाएं स्विट्जरलैंड की नागरिक थीं. रोबेर्टो़ खुद दो देशों की नागरिकता रखता है, जिसमें पहला है इटली और दूसरा स्विट्जरलैंड. रोबेर्टो को करेंसी किंग इसलिए कहा जाता है, क्योंकि यह डे ला रू नाम की कंपनी का मालिक है. रोबेर्टो ग्योरी को अपने पिता से यह कंपनी मिली. दुनिया की करेंसी छापने का 90 फी़सदी बिजनेस इस कंपनी के पास है. यह कंपनी दुनिया के कई देशों कें नोट छापती है. यही कंपनी पाकिस्तान की आईएसआई के लिए भी काम करती है. जैसे ही यह जहाज हाईजैक हुआ, स्विट्जरलैंड ने एक विशिष्ट दल को हाईजैकर्स से बातचीत करने कंधार भेजा. साथ ही उसने भारत सरकार पर यह दबाव बनाया कि वह किसी भी क़ीमत पर करेंसी किंग रोबेर्टो ग्योरी और उनके मित्रों की सुरक्षा सुनिश्चित करे. ग्योरी बिजनेस क्लास में स़फर कर रहा था. आतंकियों ने उसे प्लेन के सबसे पीछे वाली सीट पर बैठा दिया. लोग परेशान हो रहे थे, लेकिन ग्योरी आराम से अपने लैपटॉप पर काम कर रहा था. उसके पास सैटेलाइट पेन ड्राइव और फोन थे.यह आदमी कंधार के हाईजैक जहाज में क्या कर रहा था, यह बात किसी की समझ में नहीं आई है. नेपाल में ऐसी क्या बात है, जिससे स्विट्जरलैंड के सबसे अमीर व्यक्ति और दुनिया भर के नोटों को छापने वाली कंपनी के मालिक को वहां आना पड़ा. क्या वह नेपाल जाने से पहले भारत आया था. ये स़िर्फ सवाल हैं, जिनका जवाब सरकार के पास होना चाहिए. संसद के सदस्यों को पता होना चाहिए, इसकी जांच होनी चाहिए थी. संसद में इस पर चर्चा होनी चाहिए थी. शायद हिंदुस्तान में फैले जाली नोटों का भेद खुल जाता.




नकली नोंटों का मायाजाल
सरकार के ही आंकड़े बताते हैं कि 2006 से 2009 के बीच 7.34 लाख सौ रुपये के नोट, 5.76 लाख पांच सौ रुपये के नोट और 1.09 लाख एक हज़ार रुपये के नोट बरामद किए गए. नायक कमेटी के मुताबिक़, देश में लगभग 1,69,000 करोड़ जाली नोट बाज़ार में हैं. नक़ली नोटों का कारोबार कितना ख़तरनाक रूप ले चुका है, यह जानने के लिए पिछले कुछ सालों में हुईं कुछ महत्वपूर्ण बैठकों के बारे में जानते हैं. इन बैठकों से यह अंदाज़ा लगाया जा सकता है कि देश की एजेंसियां सब कुछ जानते हुए भी बेबस और लाचार हैं. इस धंधे की जड़ में क्या है, यह हमारे ख़ुफिया विभाग को पता है. नक़ली नोटों के लिए बनी ज्वाइंट इंटेलिजेंस कमेटी ने अपनी रिपोर्ट में लिखा कि भारत नक़ली नोट प्रिंट करने वालों के स्रोत तक नहीं पहुंच सका है. नोट छापने वाले प्रेस विदेशों में लगे हैं. इसलिए इस मुहिम में विदेश मंत्रालय की मदद लेनी होगी, ताकि उन देशों पर दबाव डाला जा सके. 13 अगस्त, 2009 को सीबीआई ने एक बयान दिया कि नक़ली नोट छापने वालों के पास भारतीय नोट बनाने वाला गुप्त सांचा है, नोट बनाने वाली स्पेशल इंक और पेपर की पूरी जानकारी है. इसी वजह से देश में असली दिखने वाले नक़ली नोट भेजे जा रहे हैं. सीबीआई के प्रवक्ता ने कहा कि नक़ली नोटों के मामलों की तहक़ीक़ात के लिए देश की कई एजेंसियों के सहयोग से एक स्पेशल टीम बनाई गई है. 13 सितंबर, 2009 को नॉर्थ ब्लॉक में स्थित इंटेलिजेंस ब्यूरो के हेड क्वार्टर में एक मीटिंग हुई थी, जिसमें इकोनोमिक इंटेलिजेंस की सारी अहम एजेंसियों ने हिस्सा लिया. इसमें डायरेक्टरेट ऑफ रेवेन्यू इंटेलिजेंस, इंटेलिजेंस ब्यूरो, आईबी, वित्त मंत्रालय, सीबीआई और सेंट्रल इकोनोमिक इंटेलिजेंस ब्यूरो के प्रतिनिधि मौजूद थे. इस मीटिंग का निष्कर्ष यह निकला कि जाली नोटों का कारोबार अब अपराध से बढ़कर राष्ट्रीय सुरक्षा का मुद्दा बन गया है. इससे पहले कैबिनेट सेक्रेटरी ने एक उच्चस्तरीय बैठक बुलाई थी, जिसमें रिजर्व बैंक ऑफ इंडिया, आईबी, डीआरआई, ईडी, सीबीआई, सीईआईबी, कस्टम और अर्धसैनिक बलों के प्रतिनिधि मौजूद थे. इस बैठक में यह तय हुआ कि ब्रिटेन के साथ यूरोप के दूसरे देशों से इस मामले में बातचीत होगी, जहां से नोट बनाने वाले पेपर और इंक की सप्लाई होती है. तो अब सवाल उठता है कि इतने दिनों बाद भी सरकार ने कोई कार्रवाई क्यों नहीं की, जांच एजेंसियों को किसके आदेश का इंतजार है?

Wan Ho Shon,Li Xuerui qualify for London Olympics


Wan Ho Shon of Korea bags his maiden Super Series title: 
In Women singles Li Xuerui keeps Chinese flag flying
New Delhi: Wan Ho Shon of Korea celebrated his qualification for the London Olympics with a sensational upset win over world number one and top seed Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia to lift the men’s singles title while Asian champion Li Xuerui ensured that the China would not go back empty handed from the second edition of the Yonex-Sunrise India Open 2012-OSIM BWF World Super series on Sunday with a title triumph in women’s singles.

Shon, who was assured his Olympic berth when he defeated Denmark’s Peter Gade at the quarterfinal stage, was considered a rank outsider against a player whom he had lost to four times before. However, the Korean was prepared for Chong Wei’s flat and fast game and it was his defensive skills under pressure that gave Shon the advantage on crucial points.

Chong Wei was late to get off the block and Shon took advantage of his opponent’s sluggishness to pocket the first game. The Malaysian hit back in the second but it was the tenacity of the Korean that saw his through in the decider.

At one stage, Shon looked like running away with the match when he opened up an 18-13 lead in the decider but Chong Wei retaliated with some grate down the line smashes to take six points in row.

A mistake on the net dribble allowed Shon to level scores and the Korean then kept his nerve and squeezed through the next two points to claim his maiden Super Series title.
“I have been playing well throughout this tournament and hence I was confident of a good show against Chong Wei,” said Shon after the match.

Chong Wei on his part was satisfied with his performance in the tournament. “I am coming back after a shoulder injury I am happy that I managed to reach the final. He was the better player today and he won,” said the world number one.

The women’s singles final also provided an exciting end to the tournament in front of a sizeable crowd at the Siri Fort Sports Complex.
With the women’s doubles pair of Yixin Bao and Qianxin Zhong losing the final and no other Chinese contender in the other three categories, the badminton powerhouse needed Xuerui to come good against Schenk, who had accounted for two of their stars in the earlier rounds.

The second seed began erratically in the first game as Schenk kept mixing her game plan. But once she managed to understand what her opponent was trying to do, Xuerui began to control the rallies and consolidated her position in the top-four of the world ranking in the last competition of the London Olympic qualification period with a 14-21, 21-17, 21-8 victory over giant killer Schenk in 47 minutes.

Following the first game reversal, Xuerui raced to an 8-0 lead by forcing Schenk to take risks to earn points. The German fell for the trap initially but managed to come back with some lucky net chords and a combative approach that makes her a very difficult opponent.

However, Xuerui kept her cool despite Schenk closing on her at 17-16 after having led 15-6 at one stage.
The decider proved to be a one-sided affair as Schenk got desperate to take control of the match and made too many errors in the bargain.

Results (final):
Women’s singles: 2-Li Xuerui (CHN) bt Juliane Schenk (GER) 14-21, 21-17, 21-8
Women’s doubles: 6-Ha Na Kim/Kyung Eun Jung (KOR) bt Qianxin Zhong/Yixin Bao (CHN) 21-17, 21-18
Men’s singles: Wan Ho Shon (KOR) bt 1-Lee Chong Wei (MAS) 21-18, 14-21, 21-19
Men’s doubles: Bodin Issara/Maneepong Jongjit (THA) bt 2-Sung Hyun Ko/Yeon Seong Yoo (KOR) 21-17, 14-21, 21-14
Mixed doubles: Tontowi Ahmad/Liliana Natsir (INA) bt Sudket Prapakamol/Saralee Thoungthongkam 21-16, 12-21, 21-14

BAI thanks its sponsors OSIM, Yonex-Sunrise, ONGC, Syndicate Bank, Bank of Maharashtra, Bank of India, SAIL, BBD University, Lucknow and Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs for their generous support.

It also thanks its official broadcaster Sony Six and DD Sports for the live telecast of the event and the spectators who came in large numbers to watch the matches and support the Indian players.


ABOUT BADMINTON ASSOCIATION OF INDIA

The Badminton Association of India under the guidance of President Akhilesh Das Gupta and the Organising Committee comprising of Mr. Ashok Kumar (Executive President) Mr. T.P.S Puri (Secretary) and Mr. Girish Nattu (Technical Director) are leaving no stone unturned to make the Yonex Sunrise India Open 2012 a successful one. BAI has previously organised the World Championship and Asian Championship successfully before.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Congress poor distribution of tickets cause for the MCD debacle

  A Congress leader said that the meeting was convened to find out reasons of dismal performance by the party in the MCD elections. “MLAs will give their feedback and reasons of their loss of municipal seats,” he said. The loss in the civic body is a huge setback for the party — it had lost the seats which were traditional Congress seats.


On results of MCD elections Dikshit blamed the inflation and corruption,  she advocated  that no single person can be blamed for the defeat and it is the collective responsibility of every Congressman.

Majority of Congress leaders have blamed poor distribution of tickets for the MCD debacle.

Sandeep Dikshit who attributed the defeat to an anti-Congress mood generated by scams like 2G and price rise and a disconnect between people and the Government. Man Mohan Singh categorically rejected that Congress’s poor show in the MCD was not due to inflation and corruptions.  “The MCD polls were fought on local issues.

Sheila Dikshit and DPCC  president Jai Prakash Agarwal, in quandary  to point out specific reasons for the defeat despite the fact that the party contested the election on the development work of the State Government and trifurcation of MCD.

 Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit Saturday analyzed in a meeting with her ministers and legislators the reasons behind the Congresss defeat in the recent Delhi civic polls, a statement said. Dikshit met all her cabinet ministers and the members of legislative assembly as well those who lost the 2008 assembly polls and asked them not to be "disheartened" and "work with full energy".

A Congress leader said that the meeting was convened to find out reasons of dismal performance by the party in the MCD elections. “MLAs will give their feedback and reasons of their loss of municipal seats,” he said. The loss in the civic body is a huge setback for the party — it had lost the seats which were traditional Congress seats.

On results of MCD elections Dikshit blamed the inflation and corruption,  she advocated  that no single person can be blamed for the defeat and it is the collective responsibility of every Congressman.

Majority of Congress leaders have blamed poor distribution of tickets for the MCD debacle.

Sandeep Dikshit who attributed the defeat to an anti-Congress mood generated by scams like 2G and price rise and a disconnect between people and the Government. Man Mohan Singh categorically rejected that Congress’s poor show in the MCD was not due to inflation and corruptions.  “The MCD polls were fought on local issues.

Sheila Dikshit and DPCC  president Jai Prakash Agarwal, in quandary  to point out specific reasons for the defeat despite the fact that the party contested the election on the development work of the State Government and trifurcation of MCD.

 Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit Saturday analyzed in a meeting with her ministers and legislators the reasons behind the Congresss defeat in the recent Delhi civic polls, a statement said. Dikshit met all her cabinet ministers and the members of legislative assembly as well those who lost the 2008 assembly polls and asked them not to be "disheartened" and "work with full energy".

Lower and Declining Growth in Core Sectors in India



The rate of growth of eight core sectors improved from 2.8% in 2008-09 to 6.6% in 2009-10. It moderated to 5.8% in 2010-11. In 2011-12(Apr-Feb), eight core sectors recorded a growth of 4.4% compared to a growth of 5.8% in the corresponding period of 2010-11. Lower growth rate during 2011-12 has mainly been due to a lower growth in crude petroleum, natural gas and steel sectors.

Government has initiated several steps to augment the production of core sectors by promoting state of the art technologies and by augmenting resources for exploration and mining through private sector participation. To facilitate development of necessary infrastructure, Viability Gap Finding, under the Scheme for support to PPP, has been extended to capital investment in fertilizers sector, oil and gas storage and pipelines facilities. To remove the fuel supply constraints affecting the power generation , the government has advised the Coal India Limited to sign fuel supply agreements with the power plants. In the Budget 2012-13, full exemption from basic duty has been provided to fuels such as natural gas, liquefied natural gas, uranium concentrate etc. imported for power generation. Further, basic customs duty on surveying and prospecting machinery and instruments imported for use in the mining sector has been reduced. Full exemption from basic customs duty has been provided to coal mining projects.

This information was given by the Minister of State for Finance, Shri Namo Narain Meena in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha today.


The country's largest car maker Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) on Saturday said its net profit declined by 3.04 per cent to Rs 639.8 crore for the fourth quarter ended 31st March, 2012, over the same period of previous fiscal.   The company had posted a net profit of Rs 659.9 crore in the same period of previous fiscal, MSI said in a statement. The company's net sales, however, rose to Rs 11,486.4 crore for the fourth quarter of 2011-12, as compared to Rs 9,796.7 crore in the corresponding period of previous fiscal. For the year ended March 31, 2012, the company posted a net profit of Rs 1,635.1 crore, down 28.55 per cent, as against Rs 2,288.7 crore in the previous financial year. The company's net sales stood at Rs 34,705.9 crore for the year, as against Rs 35,849 crore in the 2010-11 fiscal. The company's board, which met today, recommended a dividend of 150 per cent (Rs 7 per share of face value Rs 5 each) for 2011-12. The dividend in 2010-11 was also at same level. During the fourth quarter, the company sold a total of 3,60,334 units as compared to 3,43,340 units in the same period of 2010-11, reflecting a growth of 4.9 per cent

Leader of the largest party in the ruling coalition in Greece has said that there will be no new taxes, in an apparent attempt to win back support.Head of the Panhellenic Socialist Movement, or PASOK, Evangelos Venizelos was talking to his party on Saturday ahead of the nation's parliamentary election on May 6th.

Austerity measures introduced to rebuild the Greek economy and its fiscal system have made the ruling coalition unpopular and the opposition is gaining support.Opinion polls suggest that the two parties in the ruling coalition are expected to lose many of their seats in parliament and may not be able to secure a majority.
A coalition partner promises to increase the guaranteed minimum amount of pension to win back support.
Media agencies

European Union opened its office in Myanmar's financial city, Yangon, amid the country's political reforms toward democratization.The first ever EU office in Myanmar will help promote personnel exchanges between the two sides, and support European companies that want to make inroads into the country.

The office was launched only days after the EU decided to suspend all of its sanctions on Myanmar for one year, except for a separate arms embargo. EU members agreed on the suspension on Monday, less than a month after Aung San Suu Kyi's opposition party, the National League for Democracy, swept by-elections contesting 45 seats. The sanctions had been in place for over 15 years.

At the opening ceremony on Saturday, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton cut the tape together with Myanmar's pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.Ashton told the gathering that she hopes the office will open a new chapter in relations between Myanmar and EU countries.

Ashton, who also held a meeting with Aung San Suu Kyi ahead of the ceremony, later told reporters that the EU will support the changes now taking place in Myanmar.

Tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets in the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lumpur, demanding political reforms.Protesters rallied in squares in the central part of the capital on Saturday, and then marched along the streets, calling for clean politics.Police blocked the roads and used tear gas and water cannons to stop the protesters. Some demonstrators were arrested.One of the protesters said the public is tired of corruption and rigged elections.

Opposition parties are stepping up criticism of the ruling coalition that has governed Malaysia for more than half a century. They accuse the Malay-led coalition of vote buying and other election fraud.

Tension between the ruling and opposition blocs is growing amid speculation that Prime Minister Najib Razak may soon dissolve parliament for a snap election.

Buddhist festival “The Inner Path” by ICCR at Azad Bhawan from April 27 to May 1 in its opening day has very lukewarm response both from the organizers and people at large.The gallery created has no attendant and videos run without audience and those presents loitered here and there without any guide to inform about the run of the programmers.Film show the only attraction had film lovers but the interaction without translators put the ineterst at low ebb. Buddhist festival lined up with series of events including dance, documentary, photographs, paintings and sculptures talks and panel discussions by professors and scholars about Tibetan Buddhism, Nalanda tradition in five days event. NETPAC and Devki Foundation together to host the first International Buddhist Festival 'The Inner Path'.

Exhibition:The Greatest Journey of Ideas: Spread of Buddhism – a select range of photographs of Buddhist Art in 19 countries, by art historian-filmmaker- photographer Benoy K Behl.  This is a preview of an exhibition before it opens in London, Washington and Tokyo from May 2012 onwards.

FILM:
Twenty features, documentaries and shorts will be screened. These come from Bhutan, Argentina, Korea, Sri Lanka, China and Japan and speak of the manifold aspects of Buddhism and of great Buddhist iconic figures. Renowned directors and film personalities from these countries will be present.


Philosophic Discourse
On each festival day, at 5 pm, a Buddhist scholar/practitioner will deliver a talk on different traditions of Buddhist philosophy

Saturday: 28 April: Tibetan Buddhism and the Nalanda Tradition by Geshe Dorji Damdul, Director, Tibet House, New Delhi.

Sunday: 29 April: Bodhidharma and Zen Buddhism by Prof. Lokesh Chandra, International Academy of Indian Culture, New Delhi

Monday: 30 April: Mindfulness in everyday life by Dharmacharya Shantum Seth, Ahimsa Trust

Tuesday: 1 May: The Three Yanas by Venerable Sumati Sasana, Spiritual Programme Coordinator, Tushita Centre, New Delhi

Panel Discussions
Monday 30 April and Tuesday 1 May from 2 to 4 pm there will be panel discussions on Boddhisatvas, organized and conducted by Prof. Shashi Bala, scholar and author of several books on Buddhism. The term, Boddhisatva raises many questions and misconceptions. These sessions will give a chance to those who wish to understand and absorb the meaning and symbolism behind Bodhisattvas.
 
THE ORGANISERS
NETPAC (Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema) is an international organization with its Secretariat in Sri Lanka and Aruna Vasudev is its Founder-President. NETPAC-India has been actively promoting Asian cinema in India over many years. In 2010 it organized in Delhi the 20th anniversary of the founding of Netpac International with a major conference, Asian film festival, performances from five countries, and exhibitions. In 1995 it organized screenings of a package of Asian films on Buddhist themes, also at Azad Bhavan.

Devki Foundation is a registered Trust of Award-winning Film Producer Suresh Jindal some of whose films include Basu Chatterji’s Rajnigandha, Satyajit Ray’s Shatranj Ke Khilari, Attenborough’s Gandhi, Mani Kaul’s Naukar Ki Kameej, etc. He has just finished the shooting of Vara, the new film by Khyentse Norbu (who made The Cup & Travellers & Magicians), as Executive Producer. The Trust is involved in supporting Buddhist schools and Dharma Centres, and sponsored other events.

The festival has been conceptualized by Aruna Vasudev, President, NETPAC and is being held in partnership with Suresh Jindal, Chairman, Devki Foundation.

For more details please email: innerpath@netpacasia.org


South Korea's Samsung Electronics lead the world's largest mobile phone maker, overtaking Finland's Nokia, which dominated the market for 14 years.US research firm Strategy Analytics on Friday released the numbers of cell phone shipments between January and March by leading global makers.

Samsung was at the top with 93.5 million handsets, up 36 percent from the same quarter last year, on the back of brisk sales of its smart phone models.Nokia came in second with 82.7 million units, down 24 percent. This marks the end of Nokia's reign in the global mobile phone market since 1998.

US computer giant Apple came 3rd, with its quarterly shipment nearly doubling from last year to 35.1 million handsets. Cell phone users are increasingly switching to smart phones, sparking severe competition between Samsung and Apple.

Nokia is trying to turn around its business by tying up with Microsoft in the smart phone business, but has so far failed to stop its sales decline.

Share: by Nksagar | April 29, 2012:158 views |

Presidential polls: Smaller parties hold the key?


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Congress dismal show in recent state elections ensure regional parties hold the key to who will be India's 13th president.President Pratibha Patil steps down this July and with neither the UPA ruling conglomerate  nor the NDA the opposition consoritum having the numbers to push through their candidate, all options are open right now.
The list of probables to the coveted post  are Sam Pitroda, Vice President Hamid Ansari, Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Congressman Karan Singh, former speaker Somnath Chatterjee and Nationalist Congress party leader P.A. Sangma. To continue the list  Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, former president A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, Chief Election Commissioner S.Y. Quraishi, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, Samajwadi Party's Mulayam Singh Yadav and Janata Dal-United's Sharad Yadav.

Hamid Ansari, a career diplomat, was most obvious choice.His chances are feeble and lost some of his clout after his infamous adjournment of the Rajya Sabha during the Lokpal debate that earned him the opposition ire.
  Manmohan Singh. Congress president Sonia Gandhi has always insisted there is no question of replacing him as prime minister. And Pranab Mukherjee. He remains the principal trouble-shooter for the party could be contender for President of Congress Party.
Congress-led United Progressive Alliance holds 40 percent of the votes and the Bharatiya Janata Party  has 30 percent in the Electoral College that consists of members of parliament and the state legislatures.
Gopal Krishna Gandhi  name for possible candidate. He being Mahatma Gandhi's  grandson help clear several hurdles for him.  He may come out as the choice of Mamata Banerjee. Gopal enjoys good equations with CMs Naveen Patnaik, Nitish Kumar and J Jayalalithaa.
The President of India is key to apex appointments for the nation is a key of governance in tight control.To keep the democratic institutions work for democracy norms presidential nomination is very critical in coalition government.Congress and BJP ruling in more than half of the states of India the role of regional parties, Samajvadi Party,ruling in Uttar Pradesh, BSP,the Main Opposition party in UP, AIADMKin Tamil Nadu , BJD in Orissa , TDP in Andhra  and JD(S) in Bihar  TMC in Bengal cannot be ignored thus coming together of these regional  parties  in consolidated or splinter may give nod to the presidential candidates.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

US economic recovery slows

 US economy grew by an annualized 2.2 percent in the first quarter of 2012. Figures indicate the recovery is slowing down. US Department of Commerce released preliminary GDP figures for the January to March period. The annualized growth rate stood at 2.2 percent, against 3 percent during the last quarter of 2011.
Consumer spending, which accounts for some 70 percent of GDP in the United States, grew by 2.9 percent while capital investments decreased by 2.1 percent. The difficult fiscal situation pushed state and local government expenditures down by 1.2 percent.
The recent improvement of job figures inspired an optimistic outlook for the US economy. But caution may prevail due to the slowdown in the first quarter.

ASEAN ministers to start cooperation talks

Japan and Southeast Asian countries are expected to agree to launch talks on forging economic partnerships in a wider framework involving 16 countries, among them China and India.
Japan’s Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yukio Edano held a meeting with economic ministers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Tokyo on Saturday.
They are expected to agree to begin negotiations by the end of the year on economic partnerships among 10 ASEAN members and 6 other nations — Japan, China, South Korea, India, Australia, and New Zealand.
All these countries have already agreed to set up a working group to discuss the liberalization of trade and investment.
The economic ministers are also expected to set a goal for the next 10 years of doubling the value of trade between Japan and ASEAN members, which have economies showing rapid growth.

Spanish unemployment is on record high 24.4%

April 28, 2012Leave a Comment
Spain’s unemployment rose to a record high 24.4 percent in the first quarter. The figure released by the National Statistics Institute on Friday shows the number of unemployed people topped 5.6 million. That’s an increase of nearly 370,000 from the previous quarter. Spain’s unemployment rate is the worst in the eurozone. The country is suffering lingering economic stagnation after a housing bust four years ago.The government has introduced drastic spending cuts to reduce its debt levels, but these cuts are contributing to the country’s economic contraction.
Spanish Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria said that the government would intensify reforms to improve the job situation.
The worsening employment data came just after the rating agency Standard & Poor’s downgraded Spain’s government bonds by two notches to BBB+. Investors are concerned about whether the eurozone’s fourth-largest economy can push through austerity measures at a time of recession and mass unemployment.

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