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SAT

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GUEST EDITORIAL

Globalization’s deadly footprint T By Alex Jensen

EDITOR (Hindi Pushp) Dr. Dinesh Srivastava dsrivastava@optusnet.com.au

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southSouth asia times 3 Asia Times

hat pollution is bad for our health will come as a surprise to no one. That pollution kills at least 9 million people every year might. This is 16 percent of all deaths worldwide – 3 times more than AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined, and 15 times more than all wars and other forms of violence. Air pollution alone is responsible for 6.5 million of these 9 million deaths. Nearly 92 percent of pollution-related deaths occur in low- and middleincome countries. All this is according to the Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health, a recent report by dozens of public health and medical experts from around the world. This important report is sounding the alarm about a too-often neglected and ignored ‘silent emergency’ – or as author Rob Nixon calls it, ‘slow violence.’ In one media article about the report, the Lancet’s editor-in-chief and executive editor points to the structural economic forces of “industrialisation, urbanisation, and globalisation” as “drivers of pollution.” Unfortunately, however, the report itself doesn’t elaborate upon this crucial observation about root causes – in fact, when it moves from documentation of the pollution-health crisis to social-economic analysis, some of the report’s conclusions go seriously awry, espousing debunked ‘ecological modernization theory’ and reinforcing a tired Eurocentric framing that paints the industrialized West in familiar ‘enlightened’ colours, while the ‘developing’ countries are portrayed as ‘backward’. For example, one of the Commission’s co-chairs and lead authors Dr. Philip Landrigan (for whom I have the greatest respect for his pioneering work in environmental health), points out that since the US Clean Air Act was introduced in 1970, levels of six major pollutants in the US have fallen by 70 percent even as GDP has risen by 250 percent. According to fellow author Richard Fuller, this sort of trend proves that countries can have “consistent economic growth with low pollution”. Coupled with the fact

that about 92 percent of pollution-related deaths occur in low- and middleincome countries, this would indeed appear to validate one of the core doctrines of ecological modernization theory –– ‘decoupling’ –– which posits that while pollution necessarily increases during the early ‘stages’ of economic development, it ultimately plateaus once a certain level of wealth is achieved, whereupon it falls even as growth continues ever upward. It is understandable why the Commission might want to package its message in this way: it makes an ‘economic’ case for addressing pollution that is palatable to policymakers increasingly ensconced within an economistic worldview, one that is increasingly blind to noneconomic values (including, apparently, the value of life itself – one would have hoped that 9 million deaths would be reason enough to take action against pollution). The economic costs of pollution, along with the apparent happy coexistence of economic growth and pollution reduction, are marshalled to challenge “the argument that pollution control kills jobs and stifles the economy.” This favorited bugbear of industry and big business is certainly spurious – forget about pollution control ‘killing jobs’; the absence of such control is killing millions of people every year! But, as I showed in a previous blog post (Globalization’s Blowback), much of the rich countries’ pollution has been outsourced and offshored during the corporate globalization era. It is disingenuous at best to cite instances of local pollution reduction alongside increased economic growth in the rich world as evidence of decoupling, when those reductions were made possible only because of much larger pollution increases elsewhere. A global perspective – where true costs cannot be fobbed off on the poor and colonized – is necessary for gaining a meaningful and accurate picture of the relationship between wealth, growth, development and environmental integrity and sustainability. Panning out to this broader global perspective shows that,

in fact, GDP growth and pollution continue to be closely coupled. And because a large percentage of the pollution in poorer countries is a consequence of corporate globalization, so is a large percentage of pollution-caused deaths.

Choking – and dying – on globalization China’s export-oriented industrial spasm, powered largely by burning coal, has bequeathed it notoriously lethal air pollution, so much so that, according to one study, it contributes to the deaths of 1.6 million people per year (4,400 per day), or 17% of all deaths in the country. Another study puts the total at two-thirds of all deaths, and concluded that the severe air pollution has shortened life expectancy in China by more than 2 years on average, and by as much as 5.5 years in the north of the country. Interestingly, some studies have actually calculated the number of globally dispersed premature deaths from transported air pollution and international trade. One such study found that deadly PM2.5 pollution (particulate matter of 2.5 micrometres or smaller) produced in China in 2007 was linked to more than 64,800 premature deaths in regions other than China, including more than 3,100 premature deaths in western Europe and the USA. At the same time – despite manufacturingand pollution-offshoring – about 19,000 premature deaths occur in the US from domestically emitted pollution for the production of exports – 3,000 of which are linked to items exported to China. But this is far less than what the Chinese are suffering because of consumption in the West. According to the study, “consumption in western Europe and the USA is linked to more than 108,600 premature deaths in China”. (Worldwide, pollution emitted for the production of goods and services consumed in the US alone caused 102,000 premature deaths; European consumption caused even more: 173,000 premature deaths). Note that the above fails to take into account the costs of various other air pollutionrelated chronic illnesses. And of course, air pollution isn’t the only harmful

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human cost of China’s coaldriven industrial growth and export-orientation. According to Chinese government statistics, some 6,027 Chinese coal miners died in the course of work in 2004, though analysts point out that official estimates are usually highly conservative, and “the real number is probably higher”. Since 2004, coal extraction has grown significantly in China.

Shipping What about the transport of incomprehensible quantities of materials back and forth across the planet? Coal to China, commodities from China, waste back to China (the undisputed locus of global waste trade) – nearly all of it is done via oceanic shipping, which carries heavy ecological costs. The statistics on the scale and impact of the global shipping industry are arresting: a 2014 study found that ship traffic on the world’s oceans has increased 300 percent over the past 20 years, with most of this increase occurring in the last 10 years. According to one analysis, emissions from international shipping for 2012 were estimated to be 796 million tons of CO2 per year (or 90,868 tons per hour), more than the yearly emissions of the UK, Canada or Brazil. (An earlier study put the amount of annual emissions from the world’s merchant fleet at 1.12 billion tons of CO2.) Whatever the actual figure, shipping accounts for at least 3 to nearly 4.5 percent of global CO2 emissions. Much worse, shipping contributes 18-30 percent of the world’s total NOx and 9 percent of its sulphur oxide (SOx) pollution. A single giant container ship can emit the same amount as 50 million cars: “just 15 of the world’s biggest ships may now emit as much pollution as all the world’s 760m cars”. By 2015, greenhouse gas emissions from shipping were 70percent higher than in 1990, and, left unchecked, were projected to grow by up to 250percent by 2050; this would make shipping responsible for 17 percent of global emissions. According to the University College London’s Energy Institute – whose astonishing ShipMap may be one of the best visualizations of globalization available – “China is the center of the shipping world; CONTD. ON PG 8


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COVER STORY

ELBOURNE: The Andrews Labor Government is getting things done, investing in the projects our state needs and the people we need to deliver them. The Victorian Budget 2018/19 reinforces the Labor Government’s strong financial management with an operating surplus of $1.4 billion in 2018-19, and average surpluses of $2.5 billion over the forward estimates. This strong Budget position means we can keep getting things done. The Budget continues the Labor Government’s record investment in better infrastructure and quality services, while transforming skills and training so Victorians are first in line for the thousands of jobs being created in our state. Across Victoria, skilled workers are in demand. To ensure that cost never stops people from getting the right skills, the Budget includes $172 million to make priority TAFE and preapprenticeship courses free to help fill skills gaps and get Victorians in to work. These courses will focus on the skills we need to build infrastructure projects, respond to family violence, and care for older Victorians or people living with disability. More students will be able to access this training and get these good jobs, with $304 million to open new classes and over 30,000 new TAFE places. More young people will be able to get a trade and go straight into a job with the new Head Start Apprenticeships and Traineeships giving students the option of doing an extra year of school to finish as a fully qualified apprentice or trainee. An extra $44 million will update learning materials, introduce independent assessments and bring back trade papers to make sure all our apprentices are trained to the same high standards with recognised qualifications. Careers education will also be redesigned in secondary schools to make sure our kids get better and

This includes $2.2 billion to upgrade and widen some of our worst suburban roads, $75 million to upgrade the Mordialloc Bypass into a freeway, and $712 million to continue Labor’s widening of the Monash Freeway from Chadstone to Pakenham. The missing link in our network will finally be built under the Labor Government – with $110 million to fast-track the design and planning for the North East Link and start procurement within the first 100 days of the next term.

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Victoria budget 2018-19: Getting things done M Our suburbs are growing rapidly and it means more drivers are getting stuck in traffic, so the Budget invests more than $4 billion to get Victorians out of their cars and home to their families sooner.

earlier advice, so they can make the right choices for their future. Every family, in every community, should have access to a good school close to home – so we’re continuing our record investment in building and upgrading schools, with $1.3 billion to plan and build 28 new schools and upgrade more than 130 schools around the state. Right now, mental illness is hurting communities and leaving families heartbroken, so the Budget invests a record $705 million to give Victorians the treatment they need. It includes more rehab beds, more mental health support workers, new and upgraded specialist facilities across the state, and the creation of six new emergency department crisis hubs. To make sure every Victorian patient gets the care they deserve, the Budget invests a further $2.1 billion in better healthcare, and $1.2 billion to upgrade hospitals around the state and build Australia’s first dedicated Heart Hospital. Our suburbs are growing rapidly and it means more drivers are getting stuck in traffic, so the Budget invests more than $4 billion to get Victorians out of their cars and home to their families sooner.

And because our regional roads are not up to scratch, $941 million will get on with the job of fixing Victoria’s regional road network, including establishing a dedicated country roads body, Regional Roads Victoria. We’re continuing the biggest public transport overhaul in our state's history with $1.9 billion to keep re-building Victoria’s public transport network, provide more train and bus services, and more than 2,000 extra car parking spaces at some of our

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busiest suburban train stations. Every corner of Victoria will keep sharing in our state’s success, with another cut to the regional payroll tax rate set to make it the lowest rate in Australia and create thousands more regional jobs. This is a Labor Budget that delivers on the things that matter most to our state. This is a Budget that gets things done. -Joint media release by Daniel Andrews MP, Premier and Tim Pallas MP, Treasurer, 1 May 2018.


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Opposition talk of law and order “totally cheap”, says Daniel Andrews M By Neeraj Nanda

ELBOURNE, 10 May: Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews today came down heavily on the opposition for talking around about the ‘law and order’ situation in the state. The latest budget, he said, has more money for more police and the last two crime statistics show “we are turning it around”. Answering to a pointed question during a budget briefing at the Parliament House today by SAT, the Victorian Premier said the opposition’s talk on the subject was “totally cheap” as “we inherited a mess” but have given more resources for special firearms, more drug tests and all support to the Police Commissioner. “9,300 applications had recently applied for positions in the Victoria Police,” he disclosed.

said, “the budget includes a massive investment in the Suburban Roads Upgrade of $ 2.2 billion package to upgrade 13 arterial roads across the northers and south-eastern suburbs.” “We’d all rather spend more time with family and friends than stuck in traffic – that’s why we’re fixing the suburban roads people rely on every day,” he said.

MULTICULTURAL FUNDING Addressing the media, Multicultural Minister Robin Scott said, “Culturally diverse communities in Victoria will benefit from a record

boost of $43.6 million in multicultural funding, as part of this year’s Victorian Budget.” “The funding will ensure every Victorian has the opportunity to celebrate

our state’s rich cultural diversity, “said Minister Scott. ROADS UPGRADE Minister for Roads and Road Safety, Luke Donnellan

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BILENGUAL KINDERS Minister for Families and Children, Jenny Mikakos disclosed that Victoria will be the first state in Australia to provide an additional $18 million to give at least 3,000 children attending state-funded kinders the opportunity to learn a language other than English for the very first time. “The project will start in a few months and which languages form part of the scheme will be decided after community consultation”, she said.


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Beyond Perception:

Seeing the Unseen

By SAT News Desk

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ELBOURNE: Scienceworks has unveiled a new permanent experience that immerses visitors in large-scale exhibits revealing the invisible fields and forces that surround us such as gravitational waves, invisible light, turbulence, sound and the electromagnetic spectrum. The new exhibition, Beyond Perception has seen the entire Level 1 gallery at Scienceworks transformed into a dedicated space for teenagers and young adults. It is dark and atmospheric, with stunning light projections, immersive and interactive experiences and a generative soundscape, which uses high-tech software to manipulate all of the sounds produced throughout Scienceworks into a cohesive soundtrack that is never the same twice. The exhibition is divided into six sections including: Wrapped in Spectrum: an entrance corridor that takes a look at the Milky Way through six different electromagnetic spectrums. Cacophony: an immersive and reflective space for teenagers to relax while light projections and a high-tech generative soundscape wash over them. Turbulent Encounters: delves into the unsolved science of predicting airflow around objects. It looks at turbulence, fluid dynamics and aerodynamics via threelarge scale interactives. Energetic Vibrations: invites visitors to experience sound as a physical experience via an interactive sound couch, audio visualisations and projection mapping. Waves at Work: shows how different fields of science use waveforms to detect things we can’t see. It explores the synchrotron, various telescopes, fluorescence microscopy, CT scanning and scanning electron microscopy (SEMs). Cosmic Events: explores gravitational waves with an interactive that lets visitors bend the fabric of space-time to create black holes that they can

collide together to create a gravitational wave. Beyond Perception: Seeing the Unseen has been co-developed with teenage members of a speciallyconvened youth advisory council, JBoard. Over the past two years, they have met monthly to provide feedback on almost every aspect of the exhibition to ensure that it is both appealing and tailored to young adults. Scienceworks has also sought the assistance of 28 scientists and engineers from Victoria’s top research institutions, such as Monash University, the University of Melbourne and Museums Victoria, ensuring that the content reflects the latest in scientific and technological development. As Lynley Marshall, CEO, Museums Victoria explains, “It is predicted that education in science and math will be crucial for more than 400,000 new jobs in Victoria by 2025, but participation in these subjects is steadily declining. Beyond Perception aims to counteract this trend and inspire teenagers to participate in STEM by taking them to its most fascinating and imperceptible corners.” She says that Beyond

Perception is part of a major $6 million redevelopment, supported by the Victorian Government, aimed at engaging babies to young adults in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) at Scienceworks. Martin Foley, Minister for Creative Industries says the exhibition doesn’t just showcase ground-breaking science, it demonstrates how Museums Victoria is transforming the museum experience for all ages. “By working with teens to develop this exciting exhibition, Scienceworks has created an immersive experience that brings STEM concepts to life in a way that speaks directly to young Victorians. This all about sparking curiosity in science,

inspiring a lifelong interest and helping develop our next generation of STEM leaders.” As David Perkins, Experience Developer at Scienceworks further explains, “Beyond Perception is a richly scientific and stimulating experience, firmly grounded in STEM learning principles, but it is also a space that encourages young adults to hang out and be social, with snappy interpretation and an area to charge their phones.” JBoard member, Tanya Kovacevic said after being part of the project for two years she is excited to finally invite people to come in and see it. “I can’t believe it’s finally open! It’s amazing that we all came to Scienceworks

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because of our love of science, and now there’s an exhibition opening that we are part of. I’m so happy that we’re finally able to show everyone what we’ve been doing at JBoard, and I hope everyone will enjoy visiting it as much as we did creating it.” Beyond Perception follows the opening of Ground Up: Building Big Ideas, Together, a STEMcentered exhibition for babies to five-year-olds which opened to wide acclaim in December 2017 and has seen Scienceworks experience their highest ever visitation numbers. Beyond Perception: Seeing the Unseen opened at Scienceworks on 12 May and is free with Museum admission.


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community

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Ela Gandhi concerned about intolerance & deprivation By Neeraj Nanda

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ELBOURNE, 29 April: Mahatma Gandhi’s granddaughter and African National Congress (ANC) leader Ela Gandhi today expressed concern over intolerance and deprivation in the world. She was interacting with the media at the Gandhi- The Immigrant Exhibition on at the Immigration Museum, city today. Ela Gandhi answering to a question from SAT said, “The exhibition is excellent and gives Gandhi’s universal message of diversity. We are all equals. People are people and don’t look at them as specifics.” In an obvious reference to the removal of South African President Zuma

on corruption charges, Ela Gandhi said, “We are happy at this development

and were ourselves instrumental in getting that done.”

“The spirit and value of Gandhi’s teachings are more important in today’s

globalised world where problems are common,” she said.

Globalization’s deadly footprint CONTD. FROM PG 3 Shanghai alone moved 33 million units in 2012”. And this is only maritime shipping. Air freight is even more pollutionintensive: though much less merchandise and material is moved by air, some estimates are that the relatively minor 1% of the world’s food traded by air may contribute upwards of 11 percent of CO2 emissions. In sum, the toll of the global shipping industry makes the ‘death footprint’ of globalization’s air pollution even larger. A 2007 study conservatively estimated that just the PM (particulate matter) emissions of global shipping – estimated at 1.6 million metric tons – kill 60,000 people per year, which the authors expected to increase 40 percent by 2012. Conclusions To point out the harms of

global pollution outsourcing is emphatically not to argue that US corporations, for example, should simply return their outsourced production and pollution to the territorial US. This was the erstwhile ‘Trumpian’ right-populist recipe. Under this ideology, the way to facilitate ‘insourcing’ is not to insist on higher labor and environmental standards abroad, but to systematically dismantle the framework of laws in the US (however weak many of them already are thanks to corporate-captured government agencies) – that is, to bring the race to the bottom home. Whether generous tax cuts and other hand-outs will entice the outsourcers back remains to be seen: it’s becoming evident that the Trump/ Koch brothers enterprise is about both eviscerating domestic environmental and labor laws, and

accelerating global transnational corporate pillage – the worst of all worlds. An anti-corporate, degrowth, eco-localization stance is the unequivocal opposite. Firstly, it rejects the broader ends and means of the entire consumerist, throw-away project. Rather than merely bringing the disposable extractive economy back home, localization is about reconnecting cause and effect and overthrowing irresponsible and unethical environmental load displacement on the global poor. Localization is about re-orienting the entire economy towards sufficiency and simplicity of consumption, towards needs-based, ecologically-sustainable and regenerative production, and towards fair, dignified and democratic work and production. By definition,

localization connotes less dependence on external resources and globalized production chains that are controlled by global corporations and are congenitally undemocratic. Putting power into workers’ hands is to not have globally–outsourcing, hierarchically–owned and managed corporations, tout court. Of course Dr.Landrigan is right that reducing pollution doesn’t ‘stifle the economy’ – quite the contrary, if ‘the economy’ is understood in a much more holistic sense than mere GDP. But, as has been pointed out previously on the Economics of Happiness Blog (here and here), we also shouldn’t equate a healthy economy with a growing economy. The converse is more often the case. To reduce global pollution deaths, we not only need robust pollution control regulations, we

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must reduce corporate power, globalization, and the scale of the economy as well. ---------------Alex Jensen is a Researcher and Project Coordinator at Local Futures. He has worked in the US and India, where he coordinated Local Futures’ Ladakh Project from 2004-2015. He has also been an associate of the Sambhaavnaa Institute of Public Policy and Politics in Himachal Pradesh, India. He has worked with cultural affirmation and agro-biodiversity projects in campesino communities in a number of countries, and is active in environmental health/anti-toxics work. -Countercurrents (Originally published on the Economics of Happiness Blog at https:// www.localfutures.org/ globalizations-deadlyfootprint/.)


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COMMUNITY

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Indian Cultural Precinct work takes off with a splash of colour M By SAT News Desk

ELBOURNE, 21 April: One key location among the three chosen for injection of colour and vibrancy on the streets of Little India, Dandenong has taken off. Two artists Rowena Martinich and Geoffrey Carran have started creating a beautiful colourful mural on the wall just adjacent to the Little India’s main parking area. Today these two young artists could be seen with their brushes and colours in action at the wall which can be seen from the road as well. Talking to SAT, Geoffrey Carransaid, “the design has been created after seeing Saree designs and the colour schemes from the local traders. This design will represent the traders and

Indian culture.” “Uplifting the area with colour will give an identity to the area”, Rowena told SAT. “The second mural to be painted by Mike Eleven across the road will have the Gandhi theme which will synchronize with the Gandhi exhibition on at the Immigration Museum now,” says Geoffrey. “The contemporary artworks are expected to speak to old and new audiences alike creating great photo opportunities for sharing and promoting the precinct,” says the Dandenong Council bulletin on the Indian Cultural Precinct. The upcoming paintings are part of the Indian Cultural Precinct Framework endorsed by the Taskforce established by the Victorian Government led by Hon.

Premier Daniel Andrews, Hon. Robin Scott MP, Minister for Multicultural Affairs and the City of

Greater Dandenong to oversee the project and monitoring the $500,000 grant expenditure which has

now been made available, in part to the Council, to commence priority works in the precinct.

Pravasi Bhartiya Divas-2019 in Varanasi (January 21-23) By SAT News Desk

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ELBOURNE, 12 May: The next 15th Pravasi Bhartiya Diwas (PBD) will be held next year in Varanasi, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s constituency in Uttar Pradesh. The PBD started by the Vajpayee led BJP government and continued by the subsequent Congress led governments will now be a biennial event from 2019. The Varanasi event will be held from January 2123, 2019 and will coincide with the ‘Kumbh Sanan’ in Allahabad and the Republic Day Parade on 26 January in New Delhi. The theme of the Varanasi event will be

“ Naye Bharat Ke Nirman Main Pravasi Bhartiyion Ki Bhoomika’ (Role of Indian Diaspora in building a New India), says a media release. Themedia release also informs that the Indian Government now permits self-nomination also for the Pravasi Bhartiya Samman Award (PBSA), an award given to prominent overseas Indian or Indian organisation each year. “Any individual/ organization having the eligibility criteria for PBSA has the option to send his/ her nomination directly to the Ministry through email: pbsaward@mea.gov.in. Hard copy of the nomination form along with supporting documents may directly

be sent to: Joint Secretary (OIA II), Ministry of External Affairs, Room No. 916, Akbar Bhawan, Chanakya Puri, New Delhi,” the press release says. Those overseas Indians who are interested in participating in the PBD -2019 can visit the website www.pbdindia.gov.in/ howregister for detailed information.

Naye Bharat Ke Nirman Main Pravasi Bhartiyion Ki Bhoomika’ (Role of Indian Diaspora in building a New India

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Identity-Matching Bill must clearly define line between appropriate and illegitimate use: Law Council By SAT News Desk

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ELBOURNE: The Law Council has told a parliamentary committee that the Identitymatching Services Bill – which would enable a broad range of government agencies to identify ‘a face in a crowd’ and share the information – needs to better define the line between appropriate deployment of the system and illegitimate or disproportionate use. Appearing before the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence

and Security, Law Council of Australia President, MorryBailes, noted that the Bill would enable the sharing of biometric and other identification information of a majority of individuals living in Australia. “The Law Council supports reasonable and proportionate measures for the purposes of facilitating law enforcement and protecting Australia’s national security and there are many elements within this Bill that are aimed at this legitimate objective,” Mr Bailes said. “Clearly, the sharing of

face recognition information would be desirable to facilitate detection of wouldbe terrorists scoping a site for a potential terrorist attack. But that very same identity matching capacity could also be used for a range of other activities. CCTV footage could be used to detect, investigate or prosecute particular young people who may engage in certain low-level unlawful conduct for example. “The Law Council believes the line between legitimate and proportionate use and illegitimate and disproportionate uses should be clearly defined

and assured by law. “It should be understood and consistently applied by all relevant governments and their agencies, with clarity and stability of that line supported by appropriate accountability measures that are independently verifiable. “If that line can creep towards broad social surveillance such as (to take but one of a myriad of possibilities) use of this open system to detect and fine jaywalkers or litterers, that line can also creep further to a full social credit style system of government surveillance of Australian

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citizens. “The stability of the line must be maintained through operation of the provisions of the Act itself, not just through the anticipated good intentions of current and future governments. “The Law Council looks forward to working constructively with the government on this legislation,” Mr Bailes said. The Law Council’s submission and supplementary submission are also available online in its website. Source: Medianet, 3 May 2018.


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COMMUNITY

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Govt. all set to reform .au Domain Administration By SAT News Desk

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ELBOURNE, 19 April: Australia is all set to reform the operations of its .au Domain Administration (auDA) to streamline the country’s identity of Australian businesses and other operations on the internet. The Minister for Communications and the Arts, Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield, said “The central finding of the review is that auDA’s current management framework is no longer fit-for-purpose and reform is necessary if the company

is to perform effectively and meet the needs of Australia’s internet community.”

The review makes 29 recommendations which focus on: reforming auDA’s management framework supporting effective stakeholder engagement outlining the role and expectations of the Government fostering greater trust and confidence in the .au namespace. All recommendations have been accepted by the Government.

“The Government’s review is timely to ensure the right framework is in place so that Australia’s .au domain administrator is modern, fit-for-purpose and supports the interests of Australia’s internet users,” Minister Fifield said. “The Government has issued modernised terms of endorsement to auDA, reflecting changes to the digital landscape. These terms of endorsement outline the Government’s expectations and provide auDA with the mandate to make the necessary reforms to its governance arrangements. “The Government expects to

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see significant progress within the next 3 to 6 months from auDA in implementing these changes.” “The Department of Communications and the Arts will work closely with auDA’s management on the implementation of the new terms of endorsement,” says a media release from the Minister’s office. The report, public submissions, the new terms of endorsement and the Minister’s letter to auDA’s Board Chair are available at www.communications.gov.au/ audomainreview.


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Museum Victoria thanks Daniel Andrews for $17.3m uplift in State budget

By SAT News Desk

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ELBOURNE, 1 May: The Victorian State Government has announced a vital boost in funding for Museums Victoria today, with the increase to be utilised in the operational activities of Melbourne Museum, Immigration Museum, Scienceworks and the Royal Exhibition Building. A media release from Museums Australia says, “Museums Victoria Australia's largest public museum organisation - is today delighted to accept an uplift in base funding of $17.3m over the next four years from the State Government announced in the state budget today. From 2021-2022, Museums Victoria's base funding will increase by $4.5m per year.”

The increase in support will be fundamental to the operational, maintenance and collection management efforts of Museums Victoria's campuses, including Melbourne Museum, Immigration Museum, Scienceworks and the Royal Exhibition Building. The boost will better place the organisation to take meticulous care of our State’s collection, to proudly share stories of culture, history and science, and to offer engaging and unmissable experiences that help us to make sense of the world around us. Lynley Marshall, CEO of Museums Victoria said, “I am absolutely delighted to share in this news today. On behalf of Museums Victoria, I extend a huge thank you to Premier Daniel Andrews, the State Government, Minister Martin Foley and our

governing body, Creative Victoria.” She went on to explain, "At its core, this uplift in funding is recognition of the exceptional work by Museums Victoria staff, and I want to take this opportunity to thank each and every staff member, contractor and volunteer for the expertise, passion, and commitment that they have brought to their work on a daily basis. This acknowledges especially the hard work that was required to revitalise our program of exhibitions and experiences last year – a huge effort by the talented individuals that make up Museums Victoria, one that has been recognised far outside this organization, in government and beyond." Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley said: “This funding will enable

Museums Victoria to deliver extraordinary experiences across our state’s iconic museums. It will safeguard and bring to life our cultural and scientific collections, and engage Victorians and visitors in exciting new ways.” “Today's announcement demonstrates the strong support for Museums Victoria's future plans by the State Government. Museums Victoria is a cultural collective which is currently in the process of a thrilling transformation. This additional funding will see the organization put priority on placing First People’s living cultures at the core of its practice, and on stepping into virtual spaces to deliver audience centred experiences beyond its physical walls,” says the media release.

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This funding will enable Museums Victoria to deliver extraordinary experiences across our state’s iconic museums. It will safeguard and bring to life our cultural and scientific collections, and engage Victorians and visitors in exciting new ways.


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COMMUNITY

PRATIBHA MADAN’S EXHIBITION - REJOICE

By SAT News Desk

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his exhibition titled ‘Rejoice’ explores the celebration of everyday life and nature in a folk art style known as ‘Madhubani’. The paintings are being displayed at the Glen

Waverley Library. Art often reflects the culture and tradition of the place from where it originates. Madhubani is an ancient art form that originated in Mithila region in India. Madhubani paintings are drawn in accordance with a

fixed theme and accordingly, symbols, lines, patterns are drawn. The themes of these paintings usually include mythological characters or natural elements like flora and fauna especially fish, parrot, peacock, elephant, turtle, sun, moon, bamboo tree and lotus. The

borders are embellished with geometric and floral patterns. Traditionally they were done on mud walls using natural colours. This current body of works helps the artist explore this unique traditional art form in ‘Kachni’ style with the use of monochrome or just two colours. In this style, the subjects are more or less same and all the forms which are drawn are filled with different types of rendering instead of filling colours. The same subject looks different with the different type of line work is what has intrigued the artist

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about this art form. These works have been done using pen on paper. ARTIST Self-taught, freelance artist of Indian origin living in Melbourne for over 2 years. Trained as a Therapist and having worked with people with disabilities in India for 15 years, her formal journey into visual art started 6 years ago. Pratibha likes working with different techniques and mediums, her present artworks are an attempt to explore the traditional art forms from India.


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COMMUNITY

Basava Jayanti celebrated with great fanfare By Chandra Bangalore

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ELBOURNE: The Basava Samithi Australasia – Melbourne Chapter celebrated Basava Jayanthion Sunday 6 May 2018, at Chandler Community Centre, Keysborough with great fanfare. The event kicked off with the lighting of the lamp followed by invocation song. MaliPatilTrustee welcomed all the guests followed by Chandra Bangalore,President delivered the annual report speech. Vachana recitals and dances by children were performed which weremindblowing. Hon’ble Mayor Youhorn Chea, Gabrielle Williams MP, Memberfor Dandenong and Steve Dimopoulos, Member for Oakleigh addressed all those present. Dr. Sathish Rajasekhar, Vice Presidenttalked

about the 111 Birthday celebration of His Holiness Padmabhushan Sri. Dr.Shivakumar Swamiji of Siddegang Mutt, Tumkur, India. Dr Anavekar,Chairman delivered a short speech on Basava Philosphy and expressed his ambition for unveiling a Basaveswara statue in Melbourne, particularly in first Indian Precinct in Dandenong. Thereafter, Shivarudraswamigalu Swamiji delivered an awesome discourse. KaushylaVaghela, Dinesh Chauhan, Sivamalai Sundram and Srini Srinvasan were all facilitated. Everyone had a blast, it’s been a long time since we all had dinner together,which was cooked by all members of Basava Samithi . The word ‘WOW’ washeard at every corner after the event. The overwhelming attendance hascreated an amazing golden milestone in the history of Basava Jayanthi.

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COMMUNITY

southSouth asia times 21 Asia Times

Labor candidate for Forest Hill MANOJ KUMAR’S campaign in full swing

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Boshakthi Mela

Kabaddi World Cup

FOREIGN FLAME audio release

Australia-India Business Forum

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asia times 23 COMMUNITY ROUNDUP southSouth Asia Times

Simarjit Singh Bains, MLA welcome & Vaisakhi Mela, Cranbourne

Vedenta Centre Melbourne annual day

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How women have to fight to be journalists in India a

fter two events in the past month that shed light on the scale of sexist and misogynistic behaviour towards women journalists in India, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has taken a closer look at the many kinds of prejudice and hostility to which they are constantly exposed. One of the past month’s events was a terrifying online harassment campaign targeting the investigative journalist Rana Ayyub, which included calls for her to be gang-raped and the posting of porn videos with her head digitally superimposed over the heads of the actresses. The other was a less scary but still revealing incident during a press conference by the governor of the southeastern state of Tamil Nadu. When a woman reporter, Lakshmi Subramanian, asked him a question about the Tamil Nadu’s university, his sole response was to pat her cheek. The way the governor did this was so condescending that it sparked a major row on social networks and elicited this extraordinary comment from S.V. Shekher, the ruling Hindu nationalist BJP’s leader in Tamil Nadu: “Illiterate scoundrels are now in media, she [Subramanian] is not an exception to that. No one can become a reporter or news anchor without sleeping with some big shots.” “Such an absolutely intolerable comment is typical of the battle that women journalists must constantly wage in India in order to practice their profession,” said Daniel Bastard, the head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk. “They have fought with determination for decades to be accepted in newsrooms and then as reporters in the field, where they still often encounter behaviour that can at best be described as condescending paternalism and sometimes constitutes the most appalling misogynistic violence. All sectors of Indian society – including the public sector, employers and digital platforms – must take concrete measures

journalists in India, she had been the target of repeated online harassment.

to change this state of affairs and to allow women journalist to work with complete dignity.” Prejudice The prejudice to which women journalists are exposed begins before they even set foot in a newsroom. “Journalism as a career choice is often seen as a risky venture,” said Rituparna Chatterjee, who helped found HuffPost India and now focuses on women’s rights and gender issues. “Parents fear that women who take up journalism will not be attractive in the ‘marriage market’ since typically such women are seen as ‘bold’ and opinionated. Women often leave the field after marriage, facing pressure from in-laws and husbands.” Indian society’s opinion of women who espouse journalism instead of husbands can reveal itself in the most unexpected details. When Reader’s Digest India deputy editor Abha Srivastava wanted to rent an apartment in New Delhi, the landlady did not request evidence of how much she earned, as one would have expected. “She asked to speak with my father to get a list of ‘approved males who could come to visit me.’ This, when I was close to 40. The reason for such a

demand? The fact that I was single and a journalist.” This is a terrible combination for Indian women, it seems. Pioneers Women journalists obviously still encounter this kind of prejudice in the workplace even if attitudes are evolving. Prior to the 1960s, newsrooms were 100% male and the pioneers had to demonstrate a great deal of perseverance. “They were gawked at and there was a lot of speculation as to how long they would survive in the taxing profession,” said Usha Rai, one of India’s first women journalists, in a survey by the Press Institute of India. They had to fight in order not to be restricted to covering so-called “feminine” stories such as flower arrangement contests or sari shows. “I spent a long time trying to shrug off my gender,” said BarkhaDutt, a well-known journalist who worked for New Delhi TV for years and now often writes for the Washington Post. “But after 22 years, here’s what I learned,” she told RSF. “I had to work twice as hard to get to the same place as my male colleagues. I had to fight for certain kinds of assignments, in

particular, to cover wars and conflicts.” Sexual assaults Office relations sometimes get much more sordid. In 2013, a young woman journalist with the investigative magazine Tehelka described in detail how she was assaulted in a Goa hotel by her editor TarunTejpal. The magazine’s managing editor, ShomaChaudhury, reacted by sending an email to her employees referring to an “untoward incident” that would be dealt with internally. The victim’s colleagues had to fight to get the case made public. There have also been cases of sexual harassment in the field. After RSF reported a wave of police violence against journalists in March, a woman journalist reported that she had been groped by a police officer. And much more serious cases have been reported, such as that of the young photojournalist who was gang-raped in a Mumbai business district in 2013. As elsewhere, the line separating verbal violence from physical violence is always very tenuous. This was seen in newspaper editor Gauri Lankesh’s murder outside her home in Bangalore last September. Like many women

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“Presstitutes” And like many other women journalists in India, she had been called a “presstitute,” an insult that is much used by the trolls associated with the rightwing Hindu nationalist movement from which Prime Minister Narendra Modi comes. Some politicians, including Minister of State for External Affairs V. K. Singh, also use this insult. Swati Chaturvedi, an investigative reporter who has been the victim of online harassment, described in a book entitled “I am a troll” how Prime Minister Modi’s trolls use death threats and gang-rape calls to harass women journalists whose coverage of Modi or his party annoys them. After Asianet News TV anchor Sindhu Suryakumar hosted a TV debate in 2016 in which references were made to a Hindu female deity, her phone number was posted on a WhatsApp group and she received more than 2,000 insulting phone calls and messages within the space of a few hours. Fighting back The trolls go so far as to publish the addresses of women journalists, making them fear for their lives. This is what happened to Rana Ayyub last month, prompting RSF to refer the case to the United Nations special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions. “I am used to hate and to the state creating trouble for me,” said Ayyub, who is well known for her investigative reporting in the book she wrote about Narendra Modi, which her friend, Gauri Lankesh, translated into the Kannada language before being murdered. “But this, what they have done to me now is a new low,” she told RSF. “And I have promised myself that I will take each one of them to court, I will fight back.” India has fallen two places in RSF's newly released 2018 World Press Freedom Index and is now ranked 138th out of 180 countries. —Reporters Without Borders, May 7, 2018.


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southSouth asia times 25 Asia Times

India’s Mahindra Joins Ideal Motors For Sri Lanka’s First Indigenous Car

By P. K. Balachandran

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OLOMBO: Towards the end of 2019, automobile loving Sri Lankans will see something they have been longing to see – a locally manufactured “Sri Lankan” car vying for road space with international brands. Sri Lanka’s Ideal Motors has teamed up with India’s automobile behemoth the US$ 19 billion Mahindra and Mahindra (M and M), to make a range of vehicles ,starting with a small car, at a plant in Kalutara district south of Colombo. This will be the second Sri Lankan attempt to make a car in the country, the first being the late business magnate Upali Wjewardene’s UMC Mazda and Upali Fiat in the 1970s. But there is a vital difference between Upali’s cars and what Ideal Motors wants to do. While the earlier plants were assembly units putting together imported parts brought down in a completely knocked down condition, the Ideal Motors’ car will be an indigenous one up to at least 35% eventually.

The parts will be made in-house or in a Vendors’ Park located near the main factory. Briefing the media about the Joint Venture here on Tuesday, the Chairman of Ideal Motors, NalinWelgama, said that the recently inked JV, will initially turn out 100 small cars per year and then graduate to Light Commercial Vehicles to serve the rural market, where LCVs are in heavy demand. The LKR 3 billion (US$ 19.2 million) Joint Venture, in which Ideal Motors will have a 65% stake and M and M the rest of the 35%, will also involve technology transfer and training to personnel. “The Vendors Park will have units from the Mahindra and Mahindra stable of auto parts manufacturers in India as well as locally owned units. The local units will work under the supervision of M and M experts to ensure international standards,” Welgama said. “The idea is to give a boost to industrialization in Sri Lanka and train its entrepreneurs and

employees to work at the higher reaches of automobile technology,” the Chairman of Ideal Motors said. The cars and other vehicles made in the Sri Lankan plant will be exported, as Sri Lanka is too small a market to absorb the entire production. And one of the first markets to be

serviced will be the Indian one next door, Welgama said. Describing the venture in cricketing terms, Aravinda de Silva, the cricketer turned Vice Chairman of Ideal Motors, said that if the JV succeeds, it will be a game changer in Sri Lankan economic history, akin to the Sri Lankan cricket team’s lifting the World Cup in 1996. The relationship

Sri Lanka’s Ideal Motors has teamed up with India’s automobile behemoth the US$ 19 billion Mahindra and Mahindra (M and M), to make a range of vehicles ,starting with a small car, at a plant in Kalutara district south of Colombo.

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between Ideal Motors and M and M was established in 2009, when the Sri Lankan company became agents for the M and M stable of vehicles in the island. Due to the excellent relationship between the two entities and good aftersale-service, Ideal Motors’ share is certain sections of the Sri Lankan automobile market went up from 5 to 8 % in 2009 to 50% now, Welgama said. At present there are 65,000 M and M vehicles on Sri Lanka roads. As M and M has a penchant for skills development and training, it has, in collaboration with Ideal Motors, started training “quality workers” to work on the latest cars. The first batch of 25 workers are being trained now. Eventually, 200 quality workers will be trained every year. In fact, in 2012, Ideal Motors set up a fully recognized automotive and management training school with gives NVQ level 4 certification. The Citizen, 4 APRIL, 2018


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Kabul attack leaves Taliban/IS in command: Biggest hit on journalists

By G. Singh

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EW DELHI: Multiple suicide bombings in Afghanistan have left dozens dead, indicating a rapidly deteriorating security situation in the conflictridden country. Coordinated suicide bomb attacks near the Afghan intelligence agency building in Kabul killed at least 25 and wounded dozens more. The first explosion took place outside the National Security Directorate, and as reporters rushed to cover the attack, a second suicide bomber on foot struck. The attacker was disguised as a cameraman, and clearly intended to target those rushing to the scene. Of the 25 people killed, nine were journalists. The sequence of events suggest that reporters were a clear target, and is one of the worst attacks on journalists in Afghanistan. In a separate attack in Kandahar, 11 schoolchildren were killed and 16 injured in a suicide attack. The attacker drove a truck into a NATO convoy. The children killed were students at a local madrassa. The Islamic State

immediately claimed responsibility for the Kabul attack. At the time of writing, no one has come forward to claim the Kandahar attack. It is worth noting the Islamic State remains a fringe outfit in Afghanistan, with the Taliban being the major militant outfit that has wrestled power from the Afghan government in large parts of the country. The Taliban in fact recently announced the beginning of their annual spring offensive, when better weather enables increased attacks. The Taliban spokesperson said last week that the spring offensive will target "mainly focused on crushing, killing, and capturing American invaders,” adding that the Americans' "internal supporters" -- the Afghan government and troops -are considered secondary priorities. The latest attacks come amid a wave of increased attacks across Afghanistan, with April seeing intense violence. In just the last week of April, at least 11 Afghan soldiers and police officers were killed on April 24 in separate

Taliban attacks in Farah and Ghazni provinces; Taliban militants attacks in western Afghanistan killed 18 soldiers and police officers on April 23; a suicide bombing in Kabul claimed by the Islamic State extremist group killed 60 people on April 22. Monday’s attacks in Kabul and Kandahar are the latest in what is now almost daily violence. Seperately, BBC reporter Ahmad Shah was also killed on Monday, in Afghanistan's Khost. Shah was shot by unidentified gunmen. The Kabul attack has received widespread international attention as it represents the worst attack on journalists in the country since US-led invasion in 2001. The journalists killed include Shah Marai, a photographer for Agence France Press (AFP), Mahram Durani, a correspondent with Radio Free Europe and EbadullahHananzai, a reporter with the same agency, Yar Mohammad Tokhi, a cameraman with TOLONews, Ghazi Rasoul, a reporter with 1TV and cameraman Nawroz Ali Khamosh, Ali Saleemi and SaleemTalash from Mashal TV. SabawoonKakar, an RFE

cameraman, died in the hospital from his injuries. Five other journalists were injured in the attack. Monday’s attack in Kabul, in fact, was the deadliest day for journalists anywhere in the world since the attack at the Charlie Hebdo office in 2015. Reporters Without Borders said the attack was the worst of its kind against Afghan journalists "since the fall of the Taliban government in December 2001." Human Rights Watch issued a statement reiterating that “killing journalists is an attack on freedom of expression… Under the laws of war, deliberate attacks on civilians are war crimes. Posing as a journalist to carry out an attack is also perfidious, a war crime in which the attacker assumes civilian status." "This latest attack on journalists in Afghanistan is a reminder of the extreme dangers to media workers in that country and of the extremely brutal tactics used there by enemies of the free press," said Steven Butler, Centre to Protect Journalists Asia programme coordinator. "The attack amounts to an assault on Afghan democracy as

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the nation prepares for parliamentary elections scheduled for October." The United Nations condemned the attack, with Secretary-General AntónioGuterres underscoring the need to bring the perpetrators to justice. “The deliberate targeting of journalists in the attack highlights once again the risks media professionals face in carrying out their essential work,” Guterres said in a statement attributable to his spokesperson. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo condemned the bombings, saying "the independent media is a cornerstone of democracy." The attacks are indicative of the worsening security situation in Afghanistan -- where a shaky and very dependent partnership between the United States and the elected Afghan government has failed to establish any semblance of stability or control. The Taliban has captured more and more territory in recent years, with the latest attacks -- no matter who the claimant or perpetrator -only bolstering the militant group even further. -The Citizen, 1 May 29018


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southSouth asia times 27 Asia Times

Human traffickers targeting Rohingya refugees in Bangladeshi camps By Afrose Jahan Chaity

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ife in the cramped camps is tough. Many of the Rohingyas are trying to escape the camps to build a better future for themselves and their families. Human traffickers are taking advantage of this situation The helpless Rohingya refugees who fled to Bangladesh since late August last year to escape a brutal military campaign in Myanmar’s Rakhine state are now facing another threat – human trafficking. Life in the cramped camps is tough. Many of the Rohingyas are trying to escape the camps to build a better future for themselves and their families. Human traffickers are taking advantage of this situation. Around 40 trafficking cases have been reported in the refugee camps since the latest influx started, according to an unofficial source. The information could not be verified independently but given the sheer number of the refugees – more than a million – the number of cases seems credible. Back in their homeland in Myanmar, the Rohingyas are denied citizenship and basic rights by the government. Members of the mainlyMuslim ethnic community often venture out of their country in desperation and end up falling prey to trafficking. Media reports indicate that many Rohingyas are now stranded in India and Nepal after moving there illegally from Bangladesh. Their exact numbers could not be ascertained. Rohingya refugees in India The Dhaka Tribune met an eight-year-old Rohingya girl, who identified herself as Nuri, at an Indian safe home in southern Kolkata. Her family fled from Myanmar in mid-2017. Nuri has been living with other Bangladeshi trafficking victims rescued by the Indian police for about a year now. She was found in Kolkata’s Habra Bazar with two other Bangladeshi girls from Cox’s Bazar. She reluctantly gave her identity. Nuri said she had come to India from Bangladesh with her parents and two sisters. “Police sent

me here, and put my sisters and parents in jail,” she said. When asked who had helped them cross the border, another girl Koli, who accompanied Nuri’s family, said a broker did. “But we were later caught by the police,” she said. Nuri said her family stayed at a rented house in Patiya for a month after fleeing Myanmar. After her two other sisters, who were already in Hyderabad, told them to come over, one of her brothers-in-law contacted the middle-man. Koli, 14, said she and her sister wanted to go to their aunt’s house in Hyderabad. A broker took TK10,000 from the two sisters and TK40,000 from the Rohingya family. “Nuri is from Burma. Her family was with us. The seven of us had started from Cox’s Bazar on the same day last year and were caught by Indian police at Habra Bazar the next day,” Koli said. An estimated 40,000 Rohingyas are believed to living in India, according to KirenRijiju, state minister for home. They include 14,000 Rohingyas registered as refugees with UNHCR, media reports say. Rohingya refugees in Nepal Nepali travel agent GovindShahi said Rohingyas were coming there from Bangladesh. “It is not difficult to cross the border … Rohingyas are coming here via Bangladesh and India,” he said. A report by the Diplomat

on December 5, 2017, claimed that some Rohingya were moving to the Himalayan country. It said that approximately 300 Rohingyas were living in hastily-built shelters in Kathmandu, some in Kapan while about 600 are spread across Nepal. Their exact number was impossible to determine. “Worryingly, of the 147 Rohingya registered with UNHCR, the UN refugee agency, all arrived before August 25, the start date of the Tatmadaw’s most recent brutal military actions. This means none of the most recent arrivals has been registered as the refugees they clearly are,” the report said. Risk of trafficking in the camps Bangladeshi law enforcement agencies have prioritized preventing the risk of the Rohingya refugees being trafficked from the camps. All vehicles and exit points are under heavy security check. But the risk still remains high, experts say. “It actually goes back several years. The grand crisis is just part of a longer story,” human trafficking expert Siddharth Kara told this Dhaka Tribune correspondent in Los Angeles. “Many of them (Rohingyas) have been trafficked to Thailand for prostitution.” He said the traffickers took advantage of the recent exodus and trafficked girls

to India or other parts of Bangladesh. “It is a horrible scenario,” he said, adding: “I do not have that much faith in the repatriation process.” Assistant Director for Mediation in BLAST TaposhiRabaya said that at the beginning of the influx, people took away many children from the camps. “These Rohingya children and women are at high risk of being trafficked. People are trafficking children for domestic work. They just hold the hand of a child and take him or her with them,” she said. “No one knows what happens at the camps after sunset as outsiders (NGOs and aid workers) are not allowed to stay. Anything can happen. In fact, I did not feel that the security [in the camps] is tight enough even during the day,” she added. Women’s rights activist Salma Ali said that many Rohingya women and children had already been trafficked. At the beginning of the influx, no one monitored the movement of the refugees. “I have seen women getting on motorbikes from near the BangladeshMyanmar border and nobody knew where they were going. These women and children are in need. They are refugees. They are not sure whether they would be able to go back to their own houses. Living in this kind of uncertainty makes them more vulnerable to crimes or trafficking,” she added.

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What are the refugee camps doing to stop trafficking? Various organizations have taken steps to raise awareness about trafficking among the refugees. The Women Friendly Space by UNFPA has two weekly sessions on trafficking. UNFPA Case Worker AsmaulHosna told the Dhaka Tribune that they talk about trafficking – what is trafficking? How might they aend up being a victim of trafficking? How will they understand that someone is trying to traffic them? “Women and children are at high risk. Traffickers may entice them with offers of jobs or a better life,” he said. At times, they are swayed by such offers and flee with the swindlers, ending up as trafficking victims, he added. Senior Manager of Child Protection, Save the Children, MostofaFeroz said such instances were common. Save the Children is running a Child Club in the camps to raise awareness about such issues. “We tell them (the children) not to trust people offering gifts or jobs. In such cases, we have advised the children to come to our offices. Child Peer Leaders from our Child Club are spreading awareness messages among the Rohingyas about trafficking,” he added. Source: Sabrang (This article was first published on Dhaka Tribune), May 23 2018


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How to Make Insurance Affordable – Part 1 BY Balki Balakrishnan

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ontinuing on from the March 2018 article in this newspaper, we will explore the advantages and disadvantages of Retail Risk Insurance compared to Group Risk Insurance. In the last few articles in this newspaper, we saw various types of insurance, how they can be organized and what you need to know about Estate Planning. This article explores a few ideas about how to make personal risk insurance affordable. In the last five years, the life insurance companies have increased the Life, Total & Permanent Disability (TPD) and Income Protection insurance premiums. The increases in premiums are driven by a variety of factors. We will first consider briefly the reasons for these increase. Insurers make certain assumptions about expected claims and their costs of operations. When these assumptions change and insurers expect more claims and increases in the cost of operation in the future, the inevitable consequence is an increase in premiums. Most of the insurers are seeing more claims to-day compared to 10 years ago. Aging population, advances in medical care that enables people to live longer but are expensive when an individual is afflicted by illness or injury are few of the reasons for this increase. In regards to Income Protection, the claims have not only increased in the last few years, the claims are also for longer periods. Of course, insurers strive to keep the premiums low. However, the insurer’s business will become

unsustainable if they do not increase the premiums in line with the claims and their costs. This unsustainability may also lead to rapid increases in premiums in the future. This outcome is not good for both the industry and the insured. Hence, it is preferable that insurers increase the premiums gradually where necessary and run a sustainable business. It has been found that a significant proportion of insurance policy cancellation are due to cost-related issues. The reasons cited were, the premiums were viewed as too expensive, or the policies were deemed to be of not value for money. Not having a proper and adequate cover for you and your loved ones is not wise. So, what can you possibly do to rein in the cost of premiums not only at the time you take insurance but also on an ongoing basis? Replacing household income is a key insurance consideration especially on loss of life and disability (TPD) where you are unable to earn an income for ever. Replacing the lost income is imperative for you and your

family to be able to maintain a standard of living you are used to currently. In majority of cases insurance cover amounts are suggested which not only eliminate certain expenses but also replace the lost income fully. There could be a duplication here which should be avoided. For example, for most of the families the largest expense will be on servicing the debt, which mostly will be the mortgage on their home. When you consider life insurance, the recommended cover will include this debt repayment in full. A lump sum is also recommended as an investment to draw down to replace the lost income fully on an ongoing basis. Eliminating debt(s) using the insurance lump sum payment will remove a major chunk of living expense thus reducing it considerably. Therefore, it is enough to provide for an investment component to generate an income to service this reduced ongoing living expense. This reduction in the investment component factored in the insurance cover amount will result in less insurance cover amount overall and premium thereof. What if you have an investment property loan

which is negatively geared, that is money is going out of your family’s cash flow to maintain the property? The insurance recommendation may include eliminating the entire debt which may not be necessary in all circumstances. It may be a better strategy to reduce the debt in such a way that the investment is positively geared, that is the property returns a positive income after all the income and expenses in regards to the investment property are taken in to account. This approach will reduce the cover amount and therefore the premium. This approach will also give enough time to decide on the exit strategy on this investment. When considering Total & Permanent Disability (TPD) and Income Protection (IP) covers, the conjunction of these two has to be considered. It is highly likely that a TPD event will lead to a successful IP claim as well. This is because when you are totally & permanently disabled to such an extent that you will never be able to work in any occupation or your own occupation and medically certified as such, you will be satisfying one of the important criteria to

make an IP claim. Therefore, over-insurance is avoided when both the covers and their respective pay outs are considered in combination than in isolation. The purpose of insurance is to eliminate debt(s), partially or fully, generate ongoing income through an investment pool to maintain the standard of living, and save enough to afford a comfortable retirement. Each family’s circumstances are different such as age, marital status, health, employment situation & income, dependents in the family etc. Their plan as to what they will do when an insured event occurs is also a factor to consider. For e.g. on the loss of life of a partner the spouse may decide to work part time instead of full time to care for the children. This will reduce the family income further which has to be replaced. A good financial advice will take in to account all these factors and determine the level of each cover for each individual depending on the financial outcomes (both ongoing & retirement income) agreed. A good financial advice has to demonstrate how the agreed financial outcomes are achieved against each recommendation albeit with assumptions. This goals based approach will eliminate the odds of over-insurance. Reviewing the insurance covers at least once a year and also when there is a change to personal circumstance is an effective way to make sure that the types and amount of insurance covers are relevant to your individual circumstances. These periodic reviews could also lead to reduced premiums. There are a few other ways to make the insurance affordable for you. We will explore them in the next article in this newspaper. Be wise, be prepared!

Opes Financial Solutions Pty Ltd trading as Opes Financial Planning ACN618 122 795 is an Authorised Representative of Merit Wealth Pty Ltd AFSL 409361. Balki Balakrishnan

Director | Financial Advisor Authorised Representative Number: 409415 Merit Wealth Pty Ltd. AFSL No: 409361 M: 0419 506 560

This article contains information that is general in nature. It does not take into account the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular person. You need to consider your financial situation and needs before making any decisions based on this information. Please contact us at 0419 506 560 if you want more information or need to review your insurance covers.

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MUSINGS

southSouth asia times 29 Asia Times

A scene from the recent Hindi child-rape movie ‘Ajji’.

The Ever- Widening Chasm By Rashid Sultan

A

ccording to SBS (Australia) a rape is committed every 15 minutes in India. The annual rate, by my poor mathematical skills, comes to more than 30,000 a year. Wouldn’t it be the highest in the civilised world, if we do accept India as a civilised country? Rapes have always been considered a social evil. But a dreadful shade has now darkly coloured this evil - the political. Take,Kathua, in J&K., an 8 year oldAsifa, from a Muslim Nomadic tribe gets abducted, raped on empty stomach and fed with sleeping tablets for 3 days, bya BJP supporter, his son and his nephew who is called from Meerut. And where were these rapes were happening? In a devasthal (temple)!!! And then they murder her by crushing her head with rocks but not before a police man lastly rapes her, who is still under the influence of sleeping pills. Why they kill her after so much brutality? Because, under the laws enacted by the UPA government, after Nirbhaya case, they were likely to get hanged if she was under 12. Rape and then murder the victim is the new dictum,so no trace is left and the accused goes laughing to the bar. I do not know if any rapist has been charged or sentenced if the victim is already dead. The next scenario: after a couple of months after the incident, when the police is able to submit a charge sheet to the court, due to efforts of the S. P

(the superintendent of police), the police station is surrounded by the BJP supporters, the Hindu Ekta Munch and last but not the least members of the Bar Association . The aim is to prevent the police going to the court and submit the charge sheet. And, you always thought the lawyers were the last custodians of the law next to the judiciary. But why get surprised? These so-called custodians of law not only blocked the entry of JNU students but, also attacked the protestors at the Patiala House in New Delhi, the capitol, not long ago, because they wanted to protect the BJP, the ruling party. So much for the religious alienation of lawyers. But, no word from the government or the ruling party. And so much for the secular Bharat. Within a couple of days another case appeared in the headlines of a Dalit woman in Unnao, in U.P. The current MLA of the BJP, allegedly, raped the woman and the whole machinery of the state government shielded the MLA including the Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath who ordered her removal from the building. The climax reached when father of the victim began a campaign to get justice. The father was arrested and died in custody, under suspicious circumstances. It was only, then, the police was made to start investigation. And the response, mockingly, from the accused? “Even Lord Krishna was accused of rapes in his times” You would have to see the video to believe me.

While writing this piece today there have been two more cases of rapes as per SBS news. As per figures released by National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) the number of rape cases had increased from 24,923 to 34,000 by 2015; while the conviction rate had come down from 44.3% in 1973 to 27.1% in 2013. Funny! If you consider the stricter laws introduced in this period You do not need to be wellversed in the Rocket Science to find that the overwhelming cases of rapes are committed by higher castes against Dalit and other vulnerable segments of society, particularly, in rural India and more particularly in the north of India, euphemistically , the Hindi Belt. There has to be a reason. Isn’t this area where Manusmirity has held sway for more than 2000 years?And has been the bible of the Swarnas; and also a stronghold of the Saffron Brigade? As a result, it has seeped into our DNA to treat these segments the way we treat them, born out of the feet of the Lord Brahma, deserving nothing but contempt. The most notable feature in these cases is where swarnas ( owing allegiance to Saffron Brigade) come to aggressively demonstrate and hinder the police , (mob violence) though, howsoever,police’s weak response in tackling the situation, lawfully. The swarnas’ historical sense of supremacy and hatred about ‘others’ is taking the entire society into an abyss where no

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As per figures released by National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) the number of rape cases had increased from 24,923 to 34,000 by 2015; while the conviction rate had come down from 44.3% in 1973 to 27.1% in 2013. bridge exists to fill this chasm. “It may be argued that the contemporary culture of mob violence against Muslims and minorities (Dalits) across India is not an aberration but merely a heightened form of the cultural and social practices that have always been in play”-Professor D.N.Jha. A few days ago I heard a young Dalit leader on the TV, asking the swarnas to take their land and leave 85% of the country to them as per the population rationale. And all along, the leadership of the BJP is not only silent but, it seems they are enjoying their moment of schadenfreude. Haven’t we heard the old saying that a fish always rorts from the head? These are author’s personal views


South Asia Times south asia community 32 South Asia Timestimes

quick community guide Radio GUIDE

www.ekantipur.com/en THE RISING NEPAL: www.nepalnews.com.np

SBS Radio's South Asian

SUNDAY Language Programs Hindi..................................9 am to 10 am – 93.1 FM BANGLA Urdu................................10 am to 11 am – 93.1 FM Sydney 97.7 FM & SBS Radio 2 Tamil...............................11 am to 12 pm – 93.1 FM Melbourne 93.1 FM & SBS Radio 2 Hindi.................................8 pm to 10 pm – 88.3 FM Monday & Saturday Singhalese.......................8 pm to 11 pm –97.7 FM 6-7 PM GUJARATI MONDA Y Sydney 97.7 FM & SBS Radio 2 Hindi....................................3 to 4 pm – 93.1 FM Melbourne 93.1 FM & SBSPm Radio Bengali...............................4 pm to 5 pm – 93.1 FM Wednesday & Friday 4-5 PM Hindi...................................6 pm to 8 pm – 88.3 FM Indian (Fiji)..................................6 pm to 8 pm 88.3 HINDI Punjabi........................1 1 am to 12 Sydney 97.7 FM & SBS Radio 2 noon 92.3 FM Melbourne 93.1 FM & SBS Radio 2

Daily TUESDAY 5 PM Hindi..................................... 6 am to 8 am – 97.7 FM Hindi.................................... 2 pm to 4 pm – 97.7 FM kannada Sydney SBS Radio 3

Melbourne SBS Radio 3 WEDNESDAY Tuesday 3-4 PM Hindi.................................... .6 am to 8 am – 97.7 FM Hindi......................................... 12 to 1 pm – 93.1 FM Nepali Sydney 97.7 FM & SBS1Radio 2 12 pm - 92.3 FM Punjabi............................ 1 am to Melbourne 93.1 FM & SBS Radio Hindi................................... .8 pm to 92pm – 97.7 FM Saturday & Sunday 4-5 PM

THURSDAY PUNJABI Hindi............................... 5.30 am to 7 am – 97.7 FM Sydney 97.7 FM & SBS Radio 2 9 pm – 92.3 FM Tamil.................................... 8 pm to Melbourne 93.1 FM & SBS Radio 2 Sinhalese.......................... Monday & Saturday 1 1 pm to 3 am –92.3 FM Punjabi............................. 9 pm to 10 pm – 93.1 FM 9-10 PM SINHALESE FRIDAY Sydney 97.7 FM & SBS Radio 2 Indian.................................. .8 am to 92am – 88.3 FM Melbourne 93.1 FM & SBS Radio Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri

11AM-12 PM SATURDAY Sinhalese............................7 am to 8 am – 92.3 FM TAMIL TSydney amil..................................... 12-12.30 97.7 FM & SBS Radio 2 pm – 88.3 FM Indian.................................... 5 am to 62am - 92.3 FM Melbourne 93.1 FM & SBS Radio Sun, Mon, Wed, Sat Punjabi.......................................... 12-2 am – 92.3 FM 8-9 PM Indian................................ 9 pm to 10 pm – 92.3 FM Punjabi.................................................. 11 pm to 1 am urdu Sydney 97.7 FM & SBS Radio24/7 2 Radio stations Melbourne FM & SBS Radio (Subscription) 2 Indian Link93.1 Radio Wednesday & Sunday 18000 15 8 47 6-7 PM Radio Santa Banta (Internet) Santabanta.com.au WORLD NEWS AUSTRALIA RADIO SydneyJhankar 1107AM88.6 & SBSFM; Radio 1 Thursday; 8 to Radio Every Melbourne 1224AM & SBS Radio 1 10 pm; Contact: 94668900 or 0411247320 or Monday & Friday 9404 2111 6-7 am & 6-7 PM

South Asian websiteS India TEHELKA – www.tehelka.com OUTLOOK – www.outlookindia.com FRONTLINE- www.flonnet.com THE HINDU: www.hinduonnet.com TIMES OF INDIA: www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com HINDUSTAN TIMES: www.hindustantimes.com Pakistan DAWN: www.dawn.com THE FRIDAY TIMES: www.thefridaytimes.com THE NEWS INTERENATIONAL: www.thenews.com.pk Sri Lanka DAILY MIRROR: www.dailymirror.lk DAILY NEWS: www.dailynews.lk THE ISLAND: www.island.lk Nepal THE HIMALAYAN TIMES: www.thehimalayantimes.com KANTIPUR NATIONAL DAILY:

PLACES OF WORSHIP HINDU Shri Shiva Vishnu Temple 57 Boundary Rd, Carrum Downs, Melbourne, Vic 3201, Ph: 03 9782 0878; Fax: 03 9782 0001 Website: www.hsvshivavishnu.org.au Sri Vakratunda Vinayaka Temple 1292 - 1294, The Mountain Highway, The Basin, Vic 3154, Ph: 03 9792 1835 Melbourne Murugan Temple 17-19 Knight Ave., Sunshine VIC 3020 Ph: 03 9310 9026 Durga Temple (Durga Bhajan Mandali) Neales Road, Rockbank, Vic 3335 Ph: 03 9747 1628 or Mobile: 0401 333 738 Hare Krishna (ISKCON) Temple 197 Danks Street, Middle Park Vic 3206 Ph: (03) 9699 5122 Email: 100237.354@compuserve.com Hare Krishna New Nandagram Rural Community Oak Hill, Dean’s Marsh Rd., Bambra VIC 3241, Ph: (052) 887383 Fax: (052) 887309 Kundrathu Kumaran Temple 139 Gray Court, ROCKBANK Victoria 3335 Ph: 03-9747 1135 or M: 0450 979 023 http://www.kumarantemple.org.au/

M A Y

SHEPPARTON Gurdwara Sahib Shepparton 240 Doyles Road, Shepparton VICTORIA 3603 PH: (03) 5821 9309

JAIN Melbourne Shwetambar Jain Sangh Inc 3 Rice Street, Moorabbin, Vic - 3189, Australia. Phone: +61 3 9555 2439 info@melbournejainsangh.org http://www.melbournejainsangh.org

Melbourne West Mosque 66-68 Jeffcott Street, Melbourne Ph: 03 9328 2067

Indian Consulate Address: 344, St. Kilda Road, Melbourne, VIC 3000, Australia P.O. Box No: 33247 Domain LPO Vic 3004 Consular Enquiries: +61-3-9682 5800 (9.30am-12.30noon only) General Enquiries (other than Consular): +61-3- 9682 7836 Fax No:+ 61-3- 9696 8251 Email: consular@cgimelb.org Web site: www.cgimelb.org

Broadmeadows Mosque 45-55 King Street, Broadmeadows Ph 03 9359 0054 Islamic Call Society 19 Michael Street, Brunswick Ph: 03 9387 7100 Islamic Centre of Australia 660 Sydney Road, Brunswick Ph 03 9385 8423

Indian Consulate Consular services are handled by VFS Global Visa / Passport / PCC / IDLV / PIO / OCI services contact VFS +61 2 8223 9909. Address: Part 4 Suite, Level 12, 55 Swanston Street, Melbourne VIC 3000 Site : www.vfsglobal.com/india/australia/

Australian Islamic Cultural Centre 46-48 Mason Street, Campbellfield Ph: 03 9309 7605 Coburg ISNA Mosque 995 Sydney Road, Coburg North

Services handled by Indian Consulate Melbourne itself: OCI Misc. services, Registration of Birth, Birth Certificate, Renunciation of Indian Citizenship, Surrender of Indian Passport, New Passport Details on PIO, Transfer of Valid Visas, Marriage Certificate, Affidavit for Applying Child’s Passport in India, Documents Attestation.)

Coburg Mosque (Fatih Mosque) 31 Nicholson Street, Coburg Ph 03 9386 5324 Deer Park Mosque 283 Station Road, Deer Park Ph 03 9310 8811 United Migrant Muslim Assn. 72 George Road, Doncaster Ph 03 9842 6491, Footscray West Mosque 294 Essex Street, Footscray

SIKH

Heidelberg Mosque Corner Lloyd & Elloits Streets, West Heidelberg

CRAIGIEBURN Sri Guru Singh Sabha 344 Hume Highway, Craigieburn VICTORIA 3164 (see map), Ph: (03) 9305 6511 KEYSBOROUGH Gurdwara Sri Guru Granth Sahib 198 -206 Perry Road, Keysborough VICTORIA 3073 (see map) LYNBROOK Nanaksar Taath, 430 Evans Road, Lynbrook VICTORIA 3975, (03) 9799 1081 HOPPERS CROSSING Sri Guru Nanak Satsang Sabha 417 Sayers Road, Hoppers Crossing VICTORIA 3029, Ph: (03) 9749 2639 WERRIBEE Gurdwara Sahib Werribee 560 Davis Road, Tarneit VICTORIA 3029 PH: (03) 8015 4707

Gas escape........................................... 132 771 Poisons information........................ 13 11 26 Maternal and Child Line................ 13 22 29 Parentline........................................... 13 22 89 Kids Help Line......................... 1800 551 800 Lifeline (provides confidential telephone counselling)................. 13 11 14 Suicide Help Line.................... 1300 651 251 Animal Emergencies.................. 9224 2222

INDIAN CONSULATE

MUSLIM

Sankat Mochan Temple 1289 A North Road. Huntingdale Morning: 10.30 am – 12.30 pm daily Evening: 4:30 pm – 8.00 pm daily Site: http: www.sankatmochan.org.au Contact: 0427 274 462

BLACKBURN Sri Guru Nanak Satsang Sabha 127 Whitehorse Road, Blackburn VICTORIA 3130, Ph: (03) 9894 1800

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Glenroy Musala 1st Floor, 92 Wheatsheaf Road, Glenroy

Islamic College of Victoria (Mosque) 201 Sayers Road, Hoppers Crossing Ph 03 9369 6010 Huntingdale Mosque 320-324 Huntingdale Road, Huntingdale Ph 03 9543 8037

HIGH COMMISSION FOR PAKISTAN,CANBERRA

Al Nur Mosque 34-36 Studley Street, Maidstone Meadow Heights Mosque Hudson Circuit, Meadow Heights

4 Timbarra Crescent, O’Malley ACT 2606 (Australia), Tel: 61-2-62901676, 61-2-62901676, 62902769, 62901879 & 62901031, Fax: 61-262901073 Email: parepcanberra@internode. on.net, Postal Address: PO Box 684, Mawson ACT 2607 (Australia)

Springvale Mosque 68 Garnworthy Street, Springvale

EMERGENCY CONTACTS EMERGENCY CONTACTS Police, Fire & Abulance ........................ Victoria State Emergency Service (SES)....................................... Traffic hazards and freeway conditions..........................

Student Welfare Officer in the Indian Consulate Melbourne Consulate General of India, Melbourne Address: 344, St. Kilda Road, Melbourne, VIC – 3000 Phone: 03-96826203 Fax: 03-96968251 Email: cgo@cgimelb.org Website: www.cgimelb.orgExternal website that opens in a new window Contact person for Students welfare: Mr. Nirmal K. Chawdhary Designation: Deputy Consul General Mobile: 0430020828

Sri Lanka Consulate 000

132 500 13 11 70

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Suite 536, No 1 Queens Road, Melbourne VIC 3004 Telephone: +61 3 9290 4200 Fax: +61 3 9867 4873 Email:mail@slcgmel.org Web: http://www.slcgmel.org


southSouth asia times 33 Asia Times

quick community guide

M A Y

VIEW POINT

South Asia Times

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contd from previous page Bangladesh High Commission, Canberra 43, Culgoa Circuit, O’Malley, ACT-2606 Canberra, Australia, Ph: (61-2) 6290-0511, (61-2) 6290-0522, (61-2)6290-0533 (Auto hunting). Fax : (61-2) 6290-0544 E-Mail :hoc@bhcanberra.com

Consulate of Nepal, Melbourne Email: cyonzon@nepalconsulate.net.au Level 7, 28-32 Elizabeth Street, Melbourne VIC 3000, Ph: (03) 9650 8338 Email: info@nepalconsulate.net.au

TV GUIDE SBS1 – Daily NDTV News - 11:05 am - Monday to Saturday. (From New Delhi, India). Urdu news SBS1 - PTV News – 9.30 am - Every Sunday – (From Pakistan).

SOUTH ASIAN Garments Roshan’s Fashions 68-71 Foster Street, Dandenong, Vic 3175 Ph: (03) 9792 5688

Travel Agents Gaura Travels 1300 FLY INDIA or 1300 359 463 info@gauratravel.com.au Travel House 284 Clayton Road, Clayton 3168 Ph: (03) 95435123, Mobile: 0425803071 mail@travelhouse.com.au

lAWYERS

MLG Lawyers Ronny Randhawa 144 Sydney Road, Coburg Vic Ph 9386 0204 & 138 Walker Street, Dandenong Vic Ph: 9793 9917 Mobile : 0402 256 712 Vera Lawyers Kusum Vaghela Level 1, Suite 2, 373 Lonsdale Street, Dandenong Vic, Mobile: 0433 827 124

Jewellery Bhadra Laxman Jewellers 22ct Gold Jewellery / Silver Pooja (03) 9846 7661

Raj Rani Creations 83-A Foster Street, Dandenong, Vic 3175 Ph: (03) 9794 9398 desi estyle 76 Foster St., Dandenong 3175 (03) 87744853; 0413707685 Heritage India 54-56 Foster Street, Dandenong, Vic 3175, Ph: (03) 9791 9227 Site: heritageindia.net.au

DVDs, Music CDs & Film Stuff Baba Home Entertainment 52C Foster St., Dandenong 3175, (03) 97067252

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south asia 34 South Asia Timestimes

CONTERVIEWPOINT

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"Promoting" mythoscience

I

n her newly-published book, controversial US Indologist Wendy Doniger has directly attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for what she creating a climate in which "mythoscience" thrives, pointing out that the government allegiance to Hindutva and its 'eternal dharma' doesn't just have "strong anti-Muslim agendas" but is coupled with "virulent repression of other versions of Hinduism and its history, particularly those that contradict the skewed construction of Hindu history proclaimed by Hindutva." The veteran historian, whose earlier book, "The Hindus: An Alternative History", was withdrawn from India by its publishers Penguins after pro-Modi campaigner Dina NathBatra blamed it for denigrating Hinduism by focussing on sex, has now accused the regime under Modi for encouraging "the by now entrenched bad habit of seeking scientific authenticity in religious rather than scientific texts from the past." Noting how scientific temper Arthashatra and Kamasutra, as also Charvaka mythology of scepticism, "has now come up against a new incarnation of the forces of repressive dharma, now supporting pseudoscientific claims", Doniger says, the effort now is to find roots of modern science in religious texts like Ramayana and Mahabharata, and Vedas, with claims about "Vedic quantum mechanics and general relativity". Referring to the Modi government setting up ministries of yoga and Ayurveda, Doniger says, this has been done "to peddle their versions of ancient Hindu sciences", underlining, to achieve this "Modi has commissioned a number of revisions of textbooks (the modern heirs to the ancient shastras) mandated as supplementary reading for all government primary and secondary schools". She recalls, "Many of these books, including the widely assigned 125-page book 'Tejomay Bharat' (Brilliant India), had originally been published in 1999 in Gujarat; Modi had written the forewords to Batra’s books when he was chief minister in Gujarat and now reissued the books and wrote new forewords for them." "These revised textbooks include outlandish claims

about the history of science in India, often producing weird anachronisms", her new book, "Beyond Dharma: Dissent in the Ancient Indian Sciences of Sex and Politics", says, adding, "One maintained not only that ancient India had the nuclear bomb, it even practised non-proliferation by carefully restricting the number of people who had access to it” (presumably to Brahmins)." Noting that there are now books about Vedic physics and Vedic string theory, Doniger gives the example of how in 2015, the incumbent minister at the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Ministry of Earth Sciences publicly announced, “We all know we knew ‘beejganit’ (seed-counting), the Indian word for algebra, much before the Arabs, but very selflessly allowed it to be called algebra” (a Latin word based on the Arabic al-jabr)." Doniger says, the root of all this could be found in "Hindu nationalists", seeking to "expel the British from India", advancing a series of "two-pronged arguments, not just 'You are scientific, but we are spiritual' (though this was often said, too), but, better, 'Our religion is wiser than your science – and our religious texts contain science much older than yours'.” However, she believes, the "complex relationship between science and religion in India" took a "sharp turn to the right under the impetus of a nationalist movement known as Hindutva, 'Hinduness'. This term was invented by the nationalist VinayakDamodarSavarkar in his 1923 pamphlet entitled 'Hindutva: Who Is a Hindu?'" What came up was a new variety of sanatana dharma "heavily laced with antiMuslim and anti-woman sentiments." Suggesting this has affected the developmental agenda, too, Doniger says, the protagonists of Hindutva have gone so far as to justify blocking of major government project to build a much-needed shipping canal between India and Sri Lanka in 2007 citing the mythical causeway in the Ramayana, built by "talking monkeys" for Rama to cross over from India to the island of Lanka to rescue his wife Sita from the ten-headed demon Ravana. Source: counterview. net, May 12 2018.(Heading changed) www.southasiatimes.com.au - (03) 9884 8096, 0421 677 082


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TECHNOLOGY

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southSouth asia times 35 Asia Times

Blockchain technology – for common people

By RAJESH YOGI Recap Blockchain technology is like the internet in that it has a built-in robustness. Blockchain will profoundly disrupt hundreds of industries that rely on intermediaries, including banking, finance, academia, real estate, and insurance, legal, health care and the public sector — amongst many others. Let’s continue…. Blockchain in a layman’s term One way to think about a blockchain is as a public bulletin board to which anyone can post a transaction record. Those posts must be digitally signed in a way, and once posted, a record can never be changed or deleted. The data are stored on many different computers around the internet, and even around the world Blockchain – the blocks everywhere With Blockchain, data is split up and distributed in

pieces, all over the internet. However, only one person can put the data back together--the owner. The control of the asset stays with the owner of the asset and all is done without third party intermediaries. Blockchain foreveryone Blockchain is described as the technology for the common man. This is a description that is proving its correctness in by giving regular people more control over their resources. There are various industrial and administrative problems that the technology can solve for the common man. Do you own a small business but often feel transparency is lacking because of traditional methods of communication? Have you ever ended up with higher than usual medical bills? As a business owner, is finding legitimate candidates a hassle for you? These problems affect entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses, individuals and Blockchain technology seeks to provide

solutions to make the life of a common man much simpler through simplified solutions. How it is going to help startup’s or small businesses Most simply, a blockchain is an inexpensive and transparent way to record transactions. People who don’t know each other – and therefore may not trust each other – can securely exchange money without fear of fraud or theft. Major aid agencies, nonprofits and startup companies are working to extend blockchain systems across the developing world to help poor people around the world get easier access to banks for loans or to protect their savings. Low cost -temper proof ID Without email, phones, passports or even birth certificates, a blockchain ID could be the only way many poor people can prove who they are. That could really make their lives better and expand their opportunities. Several

companies are launching blockchain-powered digital identity programs that can help create and validate individuals’ identities. For good governance Blockchain can be used as a common reference point to bring together different levels of government (local, state and federal) to host government registries of open data. This may mean more reliable integration across government services, improved mobility and business consistency across states and better regulatory oversight when blockchains record operational information in regulated industries. Blockchain – still at early stage Blockchain is still in its early stages, and new crypto technology applications and advancements are regularly occurring. We expect big changes over the next few years, billions have been invested into this tech by venture capitalists. Early adopters –

www.southasiatimes.com.au - (03) 9884 8096, 0421 677 082

Blockchain is described as the technology for the common man. This is a description that is proving its correctness in by giving regular people more control over their resources. Banking & Finance The financial services market has implemented Blockchain technology most. They're looking to improve efficiencies with cross-border transactions. Micro lending is already getting cheaper and convenient. Middlemen & their commissions In a world without middle men, things get more efficient in unexpected ways. Blockchain is eliminating middlemen completely, how let’s discuss in next article. …….to be continued


south asia 36 South Asia Timestimes

cinema

New movies from Mind Blowing Films

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By SAT News Desk

M

ind Blowing films has released the crime-drama biopic ‘Omerta’ starring the incredibly talented and versatile, Rajkummar Rao, on 11th May. Get ready for 7 Din Mohabbatin promising a fun-filled Eid celebration starring Mahira Khan and Sheheryar Munawar, set out to release on 15th June. Followed by the much anticipated biographical film Sanju which gives an insight of the controversial life of actor Sanjay Dutt, played by Ranbir Kapoor, releasing in cinemas on 29th June. Details of the films:

OMERTA

(released in 11 May) Starring: Rajkumar Rao Language: Hindi (with English subtitles) Director: Hansal Mehta Synopsis: ‘Omerta’ will witness Rajkummar play British terrorist Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh as it traces his journey from his early days in London to executing journalist Daniel Pearl. Trailer: https:// www.youtube.com/ watch?v=WvDoOKJrrU4

SANJU

(releasing on 29 June 2018) Starring: Ranbir Kapoor, Paresh Rawal, Manisha Koirala, Anushka Sharma, Sonam Kapoor, Dia Mirza, Vicky Kaushal, Jim Sarbh and BomanIrani.

Language: Hindi (with English subtitles) Director: Rajkumar Hirani Synopsis: Few lives in our times are as dramatic and enigmatic as the saga of Sanjay Dutt. Coming

from a family of cinema legends, he himself became a film star, and then saw dizzying heights and darkest depths: adulation of diehard fans, unending battles with various addictions, brushes with the underworld, prison terms, loss of loved ones, and the haunting speculation that he might or might not be a terrorist. Sanju is in turns a hilarious and heartbreaking exploration of one man’s battle against his own wild self and the formidable external forces trying to crush him. It depicts the journey of a man through everything that life can throw at him. Some true stories leave you thinking “did this really happen?” This is one such unbelievable story that happens to be true.

Trailer: https:// www.youtube.com/ watch?v=rRr1qiJRsXk

7 DIN MOHABBAT IN (Releasing on 15 June 2018) Starring: Mahira Khan, Shehryar Munawar Language: Urdu (with English subtitles) Director: Meenu Gaur Farjad Nabi Synopsis: It is a hilarious romantic tale about a young man's quest to find his true love in a crowded Karachi neighbourhood, and the obstacles, both spiritual and physical, that he must overcome in order to achieve his goals. Trailer: https:// www.youtube.com/ watch?v=rYw2dvpXrQE

Indian films at the Sydney Film Festival – 2018 (6-17 June) By SAT News Desk

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ANTO (Hindi with English subtitles): The film is a biographical account of writer Saadat Hasan Manto's life and is set in 1940s India. The movie is a 2018 Indian film, written and directed by Nandita Das. The film stars Nawazuddin Siddiqui in the title character of writer Saadat Hasan Manto. Tahir Raj Bhasin (Mardaani) plays the 40’s Bollywood superstar ShyamChadda). Rishi Kapoor does a cameo role in the film. The film was in the 2018 competition section of the Cannes 2018. MEHSAMPUR (Punjabi, Hindi with English subtitles): Directed by KabirChowdhry this wild and daring hybrid film is unlike anything we’ve seen from India

before. A blend of fiction and reality, it investigates the assassination of iconic Punjabi folk-singers Chamkila and Amarjot.It stars real people present at Chamkila’s death, playing fictional versions of themselves.This bold,

at times psychedelic, film melds together fiction and documentary and explores narrative structures in a way Indian cinema has never seen before. Prepare to be shell-shocked! The director and the writer will be guests at the SFF.

INVENTING TOMORROW: “A multicultural handful of enterprising students tackle environmental problems specific to their respective regions in Laura Nix's doc structured around the world's largest high school science competition”, says

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The Hollywood Reporter about this film. Students from Bangka, Indonesia - Bangalore, India Monterrey, Mexico and Hilo, Hawaii tackle complex environmental issues. THE FIELD GUIDE TO EVIL: Nine of the world’s best genre filmmakers tell creepy tales drawn from folklore in the spinetingling new anthology from The ABCs of Death Producers Ant Timpson and Tim League. When the producers of Field Guide… went searching for directors to adapt scary folk tales specific to their own countries, they struck pure gold. The Field Guide to Evil is a fun and fascinating exploration of the universal nature of fear. – J. Hurtado, Screen Anarchy Source: SFF & many sites.


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NEWS ANALYSIS

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Two ‘resets’ that could

By Vidyadharan MP

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EW DELHI: April 2018 is set to change the Asian history. Creating ripples across the western world, two significant Summits took on 27 April – likely to become the Best Friday the Asian continent has seen. On this day, two ‘resets’ happened. North Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in shook hands at over the Military Demarcation Line that divides their countries. The historic summit took place at Panmunjom, a small village located in the demilitarised zone separating the two Koreas. It was the third inter-Korean summit – and the first in 11 years. It was also the first time since the end of the

Korean War in 1953 that a North Korean leader entered the South's territory. President Moon also briefly crossed into the North's territory. The summit took place after the two sides held several meetings in preparation for the joint attendance at the 2018 Winter Olympics. The idea initially was brought forward through an official invitation from the Northto conduct a meeting. The summit was focused on the North Korean nuclear weapons programme and denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula. The summit achieved significant results, with farreaching implications. It signalled the end of cold war between the two Koreas and the beginning of efforts to denuclearise the peninsula

besides many other decisions. This has also set up an interesting summit either later this month or early next month between Kim and US President Trump – two so-called mavericks with their own peculiar styles. Even as Kim and Moon were discussing the various issues in a friendly setting, another an equally interesting summit was happening over thousand kilometres away – in Wuhan of China. That was between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi – again between two strong men of their respective countries. Like the two Koreas, India and China were on confrontational mode until late last year. The tense standoff over the Doklam area in the India-Bhutan-

China tri-junction, where China tried to build border roads, lasted 73-long days, both India and China taking strong positions and refusing to budge. Then it was heightened by government’s permission to Dalai Lama, exiled in India for nearly six decades, to visit Tawang – which is a part of India but China claims it is a part of Tibet which it had annexed and now India accepts as part of China. And like in the interKorean summit, Modi and Xi too spent one and half days in the Wuhan resort, meeting at least six times and discussing an array of issues affecting the relationship between the two countries. Being an informal meeting, there was no set agenda. But it was one way better as they

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could discuss all issues. In a way, Modi and Xi too also did not disappoint their countrymen. Despite the vast differences, especially over border and terrorism issues related to Pakistan, India’s neighbour, the leaders decided to build trust, which had been missing in the bilateral relations after India hosted Dalai Lama and the China invasion in 1962. As a first step, the leaders decided to ask the respective army chiefs not to escalate tensions and maintain cordial relations. They also decided to deal with terrorism strongly. After coming to power in 2014, Modi attempted to amend the relations before he turned to America where President Obama charmed him. He had invited Xi to India and gave a rousing


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NEWS ANALYSIS

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change the face of Asia welcome first in his home state of Gujarat and then in Delhi. But the visit was spoiled by the border incursions by the PLA. Xi promised Modi to find out how it happened, expressing his lack knowledge on why it happened. But Modi’s enthusiasm was shattered. He lost trust in Xi claims, as wished by majority of bureaucracy. Even as India’s relations with the US and other western nations have been growing exceptionally well, while its ties with Beijing was nose-diving till last year, suddenly things have changed and the scenario, which Modi had envisioned as he took charge in 2014, seems to be coming back. It is yet unclear why there was a sudden change in Modi government’s stand, which came clearer after

new Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale took charge in late January this year. He is a China hand, having served last in Beijing. He seems to have set the motion of ‘resetting’ the relationship with its most important and strong neighbour, convincing both Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj and Modi for the need to improve relations. After Gokhale took over, the government, which earlier was encouraging Dalai Lama to travel to Tawang and other places, suddenly, but discreetly, asked ministers and officials to disassociate from his functions. Then came a stand-downon Doklam and showing willingness for a meeting between the leaders of the countries. China too reciprocated. It seems Russia too have played a

silent part in improving the relations. But yet it is not clear why Modi took such a U-turn in its relationship with China. Was it the because of the briefing skills of the new Foreign Secretary? Or because of some other purpose? Some political analysts say Modi did it because of his likely political compulsions. He will be facing the general elections by May latest next year, and he cannot afford to have an unstable border now as it will be a challenge to his promise of strong retaliations for any border violations. He had been severely criticising the Congress Government of Manmohan Singh for the casualties at the IndiaPakistan border. But even now, the borders continue to be vulnerable as earlier. During the run up to the elections, if the China border too experiences incursions, it will become a big embarrassment for Modi who has been projected with a man 55-inch chest. Chinese President Xi too played the same strategy vis-à-vis India as he decided to cool down after high rhetoric over Doklam before the crucial Communist Party Congress, which gave him another term. Whatever be the motive, this is a very good development, not only for India and China but also for other small countries around. These countries had been caught in the web of India-China rivalry. China has been able to influence these poor countries with the promise of financial aid, while India has no such capacity to extend money power. Countries like Sri

Lanka, Nepal, Maldives, Bangladesh, Afghanistan all have shown interest in taking the financial and technical aid from Beijing – in the form of developing roads, ports, cities etc. Xi’s ambitious initiative BRI has swallowed all these countries, who find themselves difficult to achieve these developments. But India was wary of the intentions of China and Xi, despite promises from these countries that they will not do anything against the interests of India. Indian leaders and security experts think once China develops BRI, its security interests would be hurt. So, it exerted pressure on the governments of all these countries to desist from joining the Chinese initiative or taking financial help which would put it under debt to China. It is true that once a country loses its financial independence, then it is difficult to withstand pressures from the creditor. Now, if everything goes well, these countries can also feel relief. Good relations and better trust between the two Asian powerhouses will certainly help countries like Sri Lanka, Nepal, etc. There is no doubt that these countries need financial and technical help from either India or China. For long, the Sino-Indian rivalry had been putting them under pressure. If Modi and Xi get closer and closer, it would be a big help to these neighbouring countries. It would also bring check on terrorism, which mainly emanates from Pakistan, a close friend of China. Terrorism has been affecting

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India, Afghanistan, Maldives and Bangladesh. China too is a victim of this kind of terror besides many countries far away, Russia, Europe, the US and others. The India-China-RussiaIran relationship can in fact reshape the scenario in most parts of Asia, along with the friendship between the Koreas. It can bring in a new security architecture in Asia and unmatched economic development, with China, India, Russia, Japan and Korea being major economies. Can we look forward to better tomorrow? Looks like yes. However, the keys are in the hands of Xi and Modi, and Kim and Moon. Kim and Moon showed good comradery with excellent body languages. In Wuhan, Xi and Modi too exhibited good warmth. However, the famous Modi hug was missing. Also missing were the exuberance in Xi’s face. It showed signs of strains, though they were working hard to readjust and refriend. Anyway, friendships are not easy to maintain. It requires sacrifices from both sides sometimes. Hope Modi and Xi will rise up to the occasion, like Kim and Moon, for creating a developed Asia. Non-aggressive militaries will surely make the job of these leaders easier – but only with the guidance from them. (The author is a New Delhi based senior journalist who is working as Addl. Director (Communications) at Observer Research Foundation, Delhi)


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SAT May Issue 2018  
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