Friday, December 21, 2012

India, ASEAN co-operation in maritime

Leaders of India and Southeast Asian nations have agreed to strengthen their range of cooperation, including security affairs.  India and the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations adopted a vision statement at their summit meeting in New Delhi on Thursday.

 India and ASEAN to elevate their ties to a strategic partnership. It says they are committed to strengthening cooperation to ensure maritime security and freedom of navigation and safety of sea lanes.  Vietnam and the Philippines, both ASEAN members, are engaged in territorial disputes with China over islands in the South China Sea.  During the summit talks, Vietnam's Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung urged India to help peacefully resolve problems in the South China Sea.  India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said that his country and ASEAN should intensify their engagements for maritime security in accordance with international laws.Media agencies

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said his whistling-blowing site is ready to release more than one million new files next year.Assange said this on Thursday while making a rare appearance on a balcony at the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he has taken refuge since June.

Julian Assange an  Australian national  arrested in 2010 in Britain for alleged sex offences in Sweden. He was later granted political asylum by Ecuador, but has been unable to leave Britain because a British court has ordered his extradition to Sweden.

Assange told supporters that the files to be released in 2013 will affect every country in the world.
WikiLeaks, founded 5 years ago, has released online 90,000 files related to US military operations in Afghanistan as well as 250,000 internal documents produced by US government offices.

American Olivia Culpo was crowned Miss Universe 2012 at a gala ceremony in Los Angeles, while Philippines' Janine Tugonon was adjudged the first runner-up followed by Venezuela's Irene Esser. 

India's Shilpa Singh made it to the top 16 spot but failed to progress further.
Miss Universe 2011 Leila Lopes of Angola crowned Culpo as the new Miss Universe at the glittering ceremony held at Planet Hollywood casino on the Las Vegas Strip.
As many as 89 beauty queens from around the world descended on Las Vegas on Wednesday night to compete for the title of Miss Universe.
The panel of 10 judges included singer Cee Lo Green, Pablo Sandoval of the World Series champion Giants, "Iron Chef" star Masaharu Morimoto and US Olympic beach volleyball gold medallist Kerri Walsh Jennings. 

Say farewell to 2012 in the Czech Republic
Who would not wish to celebrate the end of 2012 in style and welcome the New Year in a special way? Prague offers magnificent New Year’s Eve celebrations with fireworks over the Vltava River best viewed from the top of the Petrin Hill, historic Prague Castle, the romantic Charles Bridge or from the river cruise boats that stop near the Charles Bridge to catch the dazzling illuminations. At the Old Town Square huge crowds assemble to enjoy the shared revelry. Also Christmas markets at Wenceslas Square and Old Town Square are still open with vendors in wooden huts selling hot food, warm drinks and local handicrafts.

Choose a restaurant with an all-inclusive night of fine food, drinks and dancing, enjoy the romantic, candlelit dinner in variety of Czech traditional or cosmopolitan international restaurants. The atmosphere in Prague is always fun and relaxed, as you take in the beauty of fireworks over water, with the backdrop of Charles Bridge, Prague Castle and the Old Town.

The Czech Philharmonic Orchestra performs concerts at the Rudolfinum during the morning and evening. The New Year’s Eve celebration ball takes place at the Prague State Opera and river boats offer dinner cruises on the Vltava River. The New Year is greeted with champagne, cheers, and spectacular firework shows.
Whatever your choice, Prague is a terrific city for a New Year's Eve celebration!
For more information or more pictures, please contact:
Warm Regards
Josephine Mark
Culture & Public Relations Officer
Embasssy of the Czech Repbulic
50-M, Niti Marg, Chanakyapuri
New Delhi 110021
T : 91 11 24155200
D : 91 11 24155260

WW Color Logo_Green Blue
CA and Symposium
Dear Naresh, 

In 2012, through your support of the Worldwatch Institute, you helped to improve access to low-carbon energy in the Caribbean and hasten the shift to an environmentally sustainable world. 

Your investment and confidence in Worldwatch's work makes a significant and measureable difference in our ability to investigate the social and environmental issues that affect our world. But we need your ongoing engagement to continue this important work in 2013.

Throughout the year, we met many key milestones, and we have ambitious goals for the coming year:
  • We are now in the editing phase for State of the World 2013: Is Sustainability Still Possible? This upcoming edition of our flagship report will probe what the term "sustainability" really means, how it can be measured, how we can reach it, and how we can prepare if we fall short. We intend the book to deepen and expand public discussion of sustainability and to push policymakers toward much bolder strategies and policies to create a sustainable society.
  • Our Climate and Energy team presented its first Sustainable Energy Roadmap in the Dominican Republic. These roadmaps advise countries how to harness their abundant and inextinguishable wind and solar energy resources. As part of our effort to speed the low-carbon energy transition in the Caribbean, we're on track to release more country-specific roadmaps, including for Haiti and Jamaica, and we recently began working with the 15 Caribbean Community and Common Market members on a regional roadmap.
  • I continue to speak widely about the environmental and economic benefits of providing women and men with family planning and related health services, as well as more active and prominent roles throughout society. At a recent conference celebrating the 20th anniversary of the organization Business for Social Responsibility, I was encouraged by the audience response to my argument that corporations must dramatically elevate women's participation and influence.
  • Our Food and Agriculture team just released a new report on sustainable agricultural innovations that are helping to produce food in a climate-friendly manner. In 2013, we hope to expand our on-the-ground research to the Appalachian region of the United States, as well as internationally in China, Haiti, and India.
  • And Worldwatch continues to participate actively in international discussions, including the recent United Nations climate talks in Doha and the Rio+20 conference last June, where we worked to spread the message of State of the World 2012: Moving Toward Sustainable Prosperity. On panels, in interviews, and in our conversations with others, we consistently argue that sustainability and prosperity need to be pursued jointly.
Our team is active with research, outreach, and on-the-ground projects that work to speed the shift to an environmentally sustainable world that meets human needs-and you are a vital part of that effort. Thank you for your continued support!  

We are confident that with the steadfast support from committed donors like you, we can address head-on the challenges that our planet faces and continue to offer policymakers the innovations that encourage sustainability. There's a lot more work to be done. A gift from you will go directly toward the Institute's work to advance policies and behaviors that make a positive difference for people and the planet.
Best wishes for the holidays and the New Year,


Robert Engelman                                
Worldwatch Institute
1400 16th Street, NW, Suite 430
Washington, DC 20036

P.S. Great minds often think alike. If you feel that any of your friends or family would also be interested in joining Worldwatch's effort for global sustainability, please forward this email to them.

P.P.S. Please contact Courtney Dotson at (+1) 571-340-2680 or if you have any questions. 


  • 6 MLAs have declared that they have charges of rape against themselves in their sworn affidavits submitted with the Election Commission of India at the time of their election.
  • Of these 6 MLAs with declared rape cases, 3 are from SP namely Sribhagwan Sharma, Anoop Sanda and Manoj Kumar Paras from Uttar Pradesh, 1 from BSP namely Mohd. Aleem Khan from Uttar Pradesh, 1 of BJP namely Jethabhai G.Ahir from Gujarat and 1 of TDP namely Kandikunta Venkata Prasad from Andhra Pradesh.
  • 36 other MLAs have declared that they have other charges of crimes against women such as outraging the modesty of a woman, assault, insulting the modesty of a woman etc.
  • Of the 36 MLAs who have declared that they have charges of crimes against women, 6 MLAs are from INC , 5 from BJP and 3 from SP.
  • U.P. has the maximum number of MLAs (8) who have declared that they have charges of crimes against women, followed by Orissa and West Bengal with 7 MLAs each
  • 2 MPs, namely Semmalai S of ADMK from Salem constituency in Tamil Nadu and Adhikari Suvendu of AITC from Tamluk constituency in West Bengal, have declared that they have charges of crimes against women, such as cruelty and intent to outrage a woman’s modesty etc.
  •          Political Parties gave tickets to 27 candidates who contested the State Elections in the last five years, who have declared that they have been charged with rape.

  •          Of these 7 are Independent candidates, 5 have been given tickets by SP, 2 have been given tickets by BJP and 2 are BSP candidates.

  •      Out of these 27 candidates who declared rape charges, 10 are from Uttar Pradesh, and 5 are from Bihar.

  •      Political Parties also gave tickets to 260 other contesting candidates in the Legislative Assembly Elections held in the last five years have declared that they have charges of crimes against women such as outraging the modesty of a woman, assault, insulting the modesty of a woman etc.

  •          Out of the 260 candidates who declared that they have been charged with crimes against women, 72 are IND candidates, 24 have been given tickets by the BJP, 26 candidates have been given tickets by the INC, 16 have been given tickets by the SP and 18 have been given tickets by BSP.

  •          Maharasthra has the maximum number of such candidates (41), followed by Uttar Pradesh (37) and West Bengal (22).

  •          In Lok Sabha 2009 Elections, political parties gave tickets to 6 candidates who declared that they have been charged with rape,

  •          Of these, 1 is from RPP, 1 from RCP, 1 from BSP, 1 from JMM and 2 Independent candidates.

  •          Out of these 6 candidates who declared rape charges 3 are from Bihar, 1 from Delhi, 1 from Uttar Pradesh and 1 from Andhra Pradesh

  •          34 other contesting candidates from the Lok Sabha 2009 General Elections declared that they have charges of crimes against women.

  •          12 out of the other 34 Lok Sabha 2009 candidates declared that they have been charged with crimes against women, 77 are IND candidates, 4 are BSP candidates and 2 each from AITC and CPI (ML) (L).

  •          Maximum cases of crimes against women are against candidates from Bihar (9), followed by Maharashtra (6), and Uttar Pradesh (5).

  •          ADR and NEW strongly recommend that political parties should stop giving tickets to candidates with criminal backgrounds and who have been charged with serious crimes like murder, attempt to murder, especially crimes against women such as rape .
 Thanks & Regards
National Election Watch/Association for Democratic Reforms:
Media and Journalist Helpline
+91 80103 94248
Mr. Anil Bairwal,
National Coordinator
National Election Watch, and
Association for Democratic Reforms
+91 80103 94248,
+91 9999310100,
Prof Jagdeep Chhokar
IIM Ahmedabad (Retd.)
Founder Member National Election Watch, Association for Democratic
Prof Trilochan Sastry
IIM Bangalore
Founder Member,
National Election Watch,
Association for Democratic Reforms

ITDC and Hindustan Salts Ltd. join hands
for Development of Tourism

India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC), a Government of India undertaking under the aegis of the Ministry of Tourism will sign an MoU with Hindustan Salts Ltd (HSL) and its subsidiary Sambhar Salts Ltd. (SSL), a Government of India undertaking under the administrative control of the Department of Heavy Industry. The objective of the association is the proposed development of tourist centres in the states of Gujarat, Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh.

The MoU will be signed today by Dr. Lalit K. Panwar, Vice Chairman & Managing Director, ITDC and Shri R.K. Tandon, Chairman & Managing Director, Hindustan Salts Ltd.

To explore the possibilities of developing its large land bank at different locations, HSL with its subsidiary SSL is joining hands with ITDC to undertake the development of regions of Khara Ghoda (Gujarat), Sambhar Lake (Rajasthan) and Mandi (Himachal Pradesh) as tourist centres. These regions provide tremendous potential for development of ‘Heritage and Theme Based Tourism’. This association will witness ITDC leveraging its expertise and technical support for development of infrastructure for promotion of tourism.

In the initial phase, a detailed Master Plan will be prepared entailing details of the different projects post which individual projects would be undertaken jointly either through formation of a joint venture company/companies/Public Private Partnership or involvement of Rajasthan Tourism Development Corporation (RTDC). As part of the understanding, HSL/SSL will provide “Rights to use of land” for development and implementation of tourism related projects and ITDC will provide expertise and technical support for development of centres for tourist interest.


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The two Organizations also agree that special emphasis would be given to the areas of Tourism in preparation of the Master Plan/Sub Plans viz. Eco tourism; Cultural Tourism; Adventure Tourism; Salt Lake Tourism and Execution; Special Tourist Trolley Train around Salt Ponds and Salt Lake Area of Sambhar on the lines of Heritage Toy Trains as operating in Shimla and Darjeeling; Health Tourism; Heritage Tourism which may include converting one of the old residential colony of pre-independence time made during British regime at Sambhar Salt Works as “Heritage Village”; Religious Tourism to centuries old Temples; Boating on Canal Tourism on proposed artificial canal along approx. 110 kms boundary of Sambhar Salts Ltd; Rural Tourism and Environmental Landscaping and Commercial exploitable fruit plantation around Salt Ponds, Salt Lake and proposed Canal approx 110 kms boundary of Sambhar Salts Ltd and proposed tourist centres.

A Task Force of two members of HSL/SSL and two members of ITDC would be formed post signing of the MoU to further coordinate the activity and provide required support/arrangements for preparation of the   Master Plan and Sub Plans.

Besides the Tourism projects as emerging from the Master Plan the following would also be considered and their implementation will be give priority for development:

Ø      Centre for Skill Development for youth under the ‘Hunar Se Rozgar’  scheme of the Ministry of Tourism.
Ø      Camp/Tented Accommodation for Tourism around Salt Ponds, proposed Artificial Canal and Salt Lake Area.
Ø      A centre for “Eco Tourism and Research” as per “Ramsar Conventions”
Ø      Development of Salt Heritage Museum.

The MoU will initially be valid for a period of 3 years from the date of signing, extendable further for a period as would be decided by the Management of both the Organizations.

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