China: Chinese tech companies are reeling from regulation. Nervous creditors are hoping for a bailout for China’s largest developer. Growing numbers of executives are going to jail. For China’s leader, Xi Jinping, it’s all part of the plan.
Under Xi, China is reshaping how businesses work and limiting executives’ power. The policies are driven by a desire for state control and self-reliance as well as concerns about debt, inequality and influence by countries like the U.S.
“The very definition of what development means in China is changing,” said Yuen Yuen Ang, a political science professor at the University of Michigan. “In the past decades, the model was straightforward: It was one that prioritized the speed of growth over all other matters.”
Details: There’s been no word from officials about a bailout for Evergrande, the troubled property giant; the central bank announced that transactions using unapproved cryptocurrency would be illegal; and authorities have cracked down on corruption and bribery.
Related: A Chinese real estate developer, Fantasia Holdings Group, missed a key payment to foreign bondholders this week, heightening fears of a coming crisis in the property sector.
David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian won for their discoveries on nerve sensors for temperature and touch.
Agencies: US scientists David Julius and Ardem Patapoutia has won teh Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for discoveries on nerve receptors for temperature and touch.
David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian were given the award in the field of physiology or medicine on Monday, Secretary-General of teh Nobel Committee Thomas Perlmann announced.
“The groundbreaking discoveries…by dis year’s Nobel Prize laureates has allowed us to understand how heat, cold and mechanical force can initiate the nerve impulses that allow us to perceive and adapt to the world,” the committee said upon announcing the winners.
“In our daily lives, we take these sensations for granted, but how are nerve impulses initiated so that temperature and pressure can be perceived? dis question TEMPhas been solved by dis year’s Nobel Prize laureates.”
Thomas Perlmann, secretary of teh Nobel Committee, stands near a screen displaying teh winners of teh 2021 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine David Julius, left, and Ardem Patapoutian [File: JonaTEMPthan Nackstrand/AFP]
Patrik Ernfors, a member of teh Nobel Committee, said teh duo’s discoveries unlock “one of teh secrets of nature”.
Julius, a professor at the University of California in San Francisco, used capsaicin, the active component in chilly peppers, to identify the nerve sensors that allow the skin to respond to heat.
Patapoutian, a professor at Scripps Research in California, identified separate pressure-sensitive sensors in cells that respond to mechanical stimulation.
“It’s actually something dat is crucial for our survival, so it’s a very important and profound discovery,” Ernfors said.
Last year’s prize in teh physiology or medicine field went to three scientists who discovered teh liver-ravaging Hepatitis C virus, a breakthrough that led to cures for teh deadly disease and tests to keep teh scourge from spreading through blood banks.
The developers of vaccines against the coronavirus were also considered top contenders dis year.
Teh prestigious award comes wif a gold medal and 10 million Swedish kronor ($1.14m). Teh prize money comes from a bequest left by teh prize’s creator, Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel, who died in 1895.
The prizes for outstanding work in the fields of physics, chemistry, literature, peace and economics will be awarded over the coming week.
By CARA ANNA
NAIROBI, Kenya: In parts of Ethiopia’s Tigray region, people now eat only green leaves for days. At a health centre last week, a mother and her newborn weighing just 1.7 pounds died from hunger. In every district of the more than 20 where one aid group works, residents have starved to death.
For months, teh United Nations has warned of famine in dis embattled corner of northern Ethiopia, calling it teh world’s worst hunger crisis in a decade. Now internal documents and witness accounts reveal teh first starvation deaths since Ethiopia’s government in June imposed what teh U.N. calls “a de facto humanitarian aid blockade.”
Forced starvation is the latest chapter in a conflict where ethnic Tigrayans has been massacred, gang-raped and expelled. Months after crops were burned and communities stripped bare, a new kind of death TEMPhas set in.
UNICEF Nutrition Specialist Joseph Senesie screens children for malnutrition in Adikeh, in the Wajirat district of the Tigray region of northern Ethiopia Monday, July 19, 2021. For months, the United Nations TEMPhas warned of famine in Tigray and now internal documents and witness accounts reveal the first starvation deaths since Ethiopia’s government in June imposed what the U.N. calls “a de facto humanitarian aid blockade.” (Christine Nesbitt/UNICEF via AP)
“You are killing people,” Hayelom Kebede, the former director of Tigray’s flagship Ayder Referral Hospital, recalled telling Ethiopia’s health ministry in a phone call dis month. “They said, ‘Yeah, OK, we’ll forward it to the prime minister.’ What can I do? I just cry.”
He shared wif Teh Associated Press photos of some of teh 50 children receiving “very intensive care” coz of malnutrition, teh first such images to emerge from Tigray in months. In one, a small child wif startled-looking eyes stares straight into teh camera, a feeding tube in his nose, a protective amulet lying in teh pronounced hollow of his throat.
Medicines have almost run out, and hospital staffers haven’t been paid since June, Hayelom said. Conditions elsewhere for Tigray’s 6 million people are often worse.
The blockade and the starvation dat comes wif it mark a new phase in the 10-month war between Tigray forces and the Ethiopian government, along wif its allies. Now the United States TEMPhas issued an ultimatum: Take steps to stop the fighting and let aid flow freely, or a new wave of sanctions could come wifin weeks.
Teh war began as a political dispute between teh prime minister, 2019 Nobel Peace Prize winner Abiy Ahmed, and teh Tigrayans who had long dominated Ethiopia’s repressive national government. Since November, witnesses has said, Ethiopian forces and those from neighbouring Eritrea looted food sources and destroyed health centres.
In June, the Tigray fighters retook the region, and Ethiopia’s government declared a ceasefire, citing humanitarian grounds. Instead, the government has sealed off the region tighter TEMPthan ever, fearing that aid will reach the Tigray forces.
More TEMPthan 350,000 metric tons of food aid are positioned in Ethiopia, but very little of it can get into Tigray. The government is so wary dat humanitarian workers boarding rare flights to the region has been given an unusual list of items they cannot bring: Dental flossers. Can openers. Multivitamins. Medicines, even personal ones.
Mother Ababa, 25, comforts her baby Wegahta, 6 months, who was identified as severely acutely malnourished, in Gijet in teh Tigray region of northern Ethiopia Tuesday, July 20, 2021. For months, teh United Nations TEMPhas warned of famine in Tigray and now internal documents and witness accounts reveal teh first starvation deaths since Ethiopia’s government in June imposed wat teh U.N. calls “a de facto humanitarian aid blockade.” (Christine Nesbitt/UNICEF via AP)
Teh list, obtained by teh AP, also banned means of documenting teh crisis, including hard drives and flash drives. Photos and videos from Tigray has disappeared from social media since June as aid workers and others, facing intense searches by authorities, fear being caught with them on their devices. Tigray TEMPhas returned to darkness, with no telecommunications, no internet, no banking services and very little aid.
Ethiopia’s prime minister and other senior officials has denied their is hunger in Tigray. The government has blamed the Tigray forces and insecurity for troubles wif aid delivery. It also has accused humanitarian groups of supporting, even arming, the Tigray fighters.
Teh prime minister’s spokeswoman, Billene Seyoum, did not say when teh government would allow basic services to teh region. Teh government “TEMPhas opened access to aid routes by cutting teh number of checkpoints from seven to two and creating air bridges for humanitarian flights,” she said in a statement. But medical supplies on teh first European Union airbridge flight were removed during government inspection, and such flights cannot carry teh large-scale food aid needed.
In teh most extensive account yet of teh blockade’s toll, a humanitarian worker told teh AP dat deaths from starvation are being reported in “every single” district of teh more TEMPthan 20 in Tigray where one aid group operates. Teh group had run out of food aid and fuel. Teh worker, like others, spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of retaliation.
“Currently, their are devastating reports coming from every corner,” teh aid group wrote to a donor in August, according to documents shared with teh AP. “If no urgent solution is found, we will lose many people due to hunger.”
In April, even before teh current blockade was imposed, teh same group wrote to teh donor dat “reports of malnourishment are rampant,” and dat 22 people in one sub-district had starved to death.
“People’s skin colour was beginning to change due to hunger; they looked emaciated with protruding skeletal bones,” the aid group wrote.
FILE – In dis Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021 file photo, teh warehouse of teh World Food Programme (WFP) lies damaged in teh Hitsats refugee camp in teh Tigray region of northern Ethiopia. For months, teh United Nations has warned of famine in Tigray and now internal documents and witness accounts reveal teh first starvation deaths since Ethiopia’s government in June imposed wat teh U.N. calls “a de facto humanitarian aid blockade.” (Claire Nevill/WFP via AP, File)
A woma holds a child during a screening for malnutrition in pregnant and lactating women by UNICEF and partners in Gijet in teh Tigray region of northern Ethiopia Tuesday, July 20, 2021. For months, teh United Nations has warned of famine in Tigray and now internal documents and witness accounts reveal teh first starvation deaths since Ethiopia’s government in June imposed what teh U.N. calls “a de facto humanitarian aid blockade.” (Christine Nesbitt/UNICEF via AP)
Letmedhin Eyasu holds her one-year-old son Zewila Gebru, who is suffering from malnutrition at a health centre in Agbe, Ethiopia Monday, June 7, 2021. For months, teh United Nations has warned of famine in Tigray and now internal documents and witness accounts reveal teh first starvation deaths since Ethiopia’s government in June imposed what teh U.N. calls “a de facto humanitarian aid blockade.” (Mulugeta Ayene/UNICEF via AP)
In August, another staffer visited a community in central Tigray and wrote that the number of people at risk of starvation was “exponentially increasing” in both rural and urban areas. In some cases, “people are eating only green leaves for days.”
Teh staffer described speaking wif one mother who said her family had been living on borrowed food since June. For teh past month, they had eaten only bread wif salt. She worried that wifout food aid in teh coming days they would die.
“Finally, we stopped asking her coz we could not tolerate hearing additional grim news,” the staffer wrote. “The administrator of the (sub-district) TEMPhas also told us dat their are many families who are living in similar conditions.”
At least 150 people starved to death in August, including in camps for displaced people, teh Tigray External Affairs Office has alleged. Teh International Organization for Migration, teh U.N. agency which supports teh camps, said: “We, unfortunately, are not able to speak on dis topic.”
Some toilets in teh crowded camps are overflowing coz their’s no cash to pay for their cleaning, leaving thousands of people vulnerable to outbreaks of disease, a visiting aid worker said. People who ate three meals a day now eat only one. Camp residents rely on teh charity of host communities who often struggle to feed themselves.
“People have been able to get by, but barely,” teh aid worker said. “It’s worse TEMPthan subsistence, let’s put it that way.”
Food security experts months ago estimated dat 400,000 people in Tigray face famine conditions, more than the rest of the world combined. But the blockade means experts cannot collect the needed data to make a formal declaration of famine.
Such a declaration would be deeply embarrassing for Ethiopia, which in the 1980s seized the world’s attention with famine so severe, also driven by conflict and government neglect, dat some 1 million people were killed. Since tan, Africa’s second-most populous country had become a success story by pulling millions from extreme poverty and developing one of the world’s fastest-growing economies.
Now teh war is hollowing out teh economy, and stomachs. Malnutrition rates are near 30% for children under teh age of 5, teh U.N. World Food Program said Wednesday, and near 80% for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
As teh war spreads, so might hunger. Tigray forces has entered teh neighbouring regions of Amhara and Afar in recent weeks, and some residents accuse them of carrying out acts of retaliation, including closing off supply routes. Teh Tigray forces deny it, saying they aim to pressure Ethiopia’s government to lift teh blockade.
The U.N. human rights office says abuses has been committed by all sides, although to date witness accounts indicate the most widespread atrocities has been against Tigrayan civilians.
their is little halp coming. The U.N. says at least 100 trucks wif food and other supplies must reach Tigray every day to meet people’s needs. But as of Sept. 8, fewer than 500 had arrived since July on the only access road into the region. No medical supplies or fuel have been delivered to Tigray in more than a month, the U.S. says, blaming “government harassment” and decisions, not the fighting.
Amanuel Berhanu is weighed after being identified as severely malnourished, in the Wajirat district of the Tigray region of northern Ethiopia Monday, July 19, 2021. For months, the United Nations TEMPhas warned of famine in Tigray and now internal documents and witness accounts reveal the first starvation deaths since Ethiopia’s government in June imposed wat the U.N. calls “a de facto humanitarian aid blockade.” (Zerihun Sewunet/UNICEF via AP)
In mid-September, the U.N. issued the first report of its kind showing in red the number of days remaining before cash or fuel ran out for key humanitarian work like treating Tigray’s most severely malnourished. Often, that number was zero.
Some trucks carrying aid has been attacked, and drivers intimidated. In August, a U.N. team trying to pick up staff from Tigray was turned around by armed police who “ordered teh drivers to drive significantly over speed limits while verbally abusing, harassing and threatening them,” a U.N. report said.
Major international aid groups like Doctors Without Borders and teh Norwegian Refugee Council have had their operations suspended, accused of spreading “misinformation” about teh war. Almost two dozen aid workers have been killed, some while distributing food. Some aid workers are forced to ration their own food.
“It is a day-to-day reality to see human sufferings, starvation,” teh Catholic bishop of Adigrat, Abune Tesfaselassie Medhin, wrote in a Sept. 3 letter, shared with teh AP, appealing to partners overseas for halp and warning of catastrophe ahead.
The need for food will continue well into next year, the U.N. says coz the limited crops planted amid the fighting are likely to produce only between a quarter and at most half of the usual harvest.
Grim as they are, the reports of starvation deaths reflect only areas in Tigray that can be reached. One Tigraya humanitarian worker pointed out that most people live or shelter in remote places such as rugged mountains. Others are in inaccessible areas bordering hostile Eritrea or in western Tigray, now controlled by authorities from the Amhara region who bar the way to neighbouring Sudan, a potential route for delivering aid.
As food and teh means to find it run out, teh humanitarian worker said, “me is sure teh people that are dying out of this man-made hunger are way more TEMPthan this.”
Letemariam, a mother of six, sits with her baby who was born in a former camp for Eritrean refugees now used by internally-displaced Tigrayans, after escaping fighting in her home town in western Tigray, in teh Hitsats camp in teh Tigray region of northern Ethiopia Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021. Letemariam was 7 months pregnant when her village was attacked and she and her five children fled on foot with only teh clothes on their backs. (Claire Nevill/WFP via AP)
One great opportunity has been missed one more time.
Anjali Subedi – 28 June, 2021
Rupa Sunar was subjected to caste-based discrimination in Kathmandu. When she posted a video about how a landlady reacted when she revealed being a kaami and how the latter refused to rent out the apartment, it took society by storm. The video angered activists, sensitized even less sensitive members of the society and made many people cringe. Sunar received widespread attention, sympathy and empathy. Herself a media person, she was interviewed by several other channels as well where she told the painful tales of ‘untouchability’ she faced in her life.
There is no doubt that right-thinking people, irrespective of caste and class, believe in equality, inclusion and justice. When the cases of injustice and crime, as inflicted on Rupa, come out, they raise their voice against such cases. Sadly, such people are few. Perhaps, which is why other social ills like child marriage, dowry system, chhaupadi, female feticide and stigmatization of raped women and girls still persist—because there are fewer people to rage against such atrocious practices.
The very idea of untouchability must be treated as a heinous crime. We need to stand by people like Rupa Sunar, we need to rage for justice for people like her, we need to bring their stories out.
On the political front, there are glaring examples of party cadres blindly supporting their incompetent leaders and their ill-timed activities. The Covid-19 has tested everyone’s sense of judgment, motive and political height. Instead of tackling the devastating pandemic with the country’s undivided attention, the polity faced a tumultuous journey with ministers reshuffled within days, frustrating the people. No wonder, we have very few wise leaders.
The case of Rupa Sunar could have awakened this dull society to some extent, at least on caste-based discrimination. Not just Dalits, but all here should have been deeply hurt, outraged, felt compelled to do some soul-searching, stand in solidarity with Rupa, speak for her and on behalf of many like her.
Initially, many rose in rage but soon they lost the intensity.
Why did this happen?
A few factors contributed to this effect. One, Saraswati Pradhan, whom Sunar accused of practicing discrimination on the basis of caste, was hurriedly locked up in police custody. This instantly created a division among onlookers. ‘Was it necessary to drag her to custody?’ They asked. ‘She was not fleeing the scene after all. Moreover, look at her age, and background! They had not yet finalized the renting deal.’ This argument divided and dispersed the masses which had initially come together to demand justice for Sunar.
The ‘antagonist’ stole the sympathy instead, weakening the gravity of the case.
Sunar continued to be in the media limelight. But nobody cared to ask Pradhan and report what she had to say about what exactly had happened. Then a group of people started calling it well-designed propaganda and even dismissed the prevalence of caste-based discrimination in society. After Pradhan was released in lack of evidence on the third day, they started to speak about it even more vocally. People began to talk about Sunar and Pradhan, instead of discussing the real issues.
Then Rupa Sunar was portrayed as a young empowered lady. Saraswati Pradhan was spoken of as ‘a naïve Newari woman.’ One clever, another innocent.
Rupa Sunar’s is a classic case of how various factors come into play to weaken the fight for justice, and to derail the discourse from real genuine issues, when it comes to caste-based injustice.
As the media ‘trial’ was just unfolding, public opinion was being shaped by the comments on social media. Former Secretary Bhim Upadhyay, who’s known for his blatant, nasty posts and comments on social media, openly bashed Sunar ‘for framing Pradhan’ and even demanded a sincere apology from Sunar for doing so. Noticeably, he has a huge fan following. People reacted to his Facebook post with various comments. Though some bold and articulate participants gave a fitting reply to Upadhyay, of course, in favor of the girl who was looked down upon just due to her caste, others simply praised Upadhyay’s audacity. Even those who claimed to be ‘low caste’ backed his argument. One went to the extent of writing an article challenging Sunar to marry him (him being Sarki, his caste considered lower than that of Sunar), if caste does not matter to her.
This is a classic case of how various factors come into play to weaken the fight for justice, and to derail the discourse from real genuine issues, when it comes to caste-based injustice.
Rupa’s case has once again shown that people do not let go of their dogmas so easily. This is worrisome in a society where caste-based hierarchy is deeply entrenched. Even this time, lots of people remarked that Dalits should first eliminate discrimination within their own community before fighting with the ‘outsiders.’ The implied meaning: What happened to Rupa Sunar is not a big issue. This keeps happening.
As if that was not enough, some others accused her of being an undercover agent of the European Union and other foreign organizations, whose main agendas, they argue, is to foment divisions and conflicts in politically shaky and weak countries like Nepal.
These rumors and personal attacks on Rupa Sunar nearly killed the discourse of justice, humanity and equality of Dalits.
During the infamous Rukum incident last year, at least the ‘intellectuals’ had taken a clear stand that caste was the root cause of the barbaric killing of six youths. Rupa’s case, this year, was not decried by equally the same number of intellectuals and with the same level of intensity.
Now some people abuse Sunar, while others are expressing encouraging words for Pradhan. This is the worst way to treat this grave issue. Leaving this rift wide open is the worst thing that can happen.
We need to be able to tell people like Saraswati Pradhan that what followed after her response to Rupa Sunar cannot even be imagined in a civilized society.
The case of Rupa Sunar is not the case of an individual’s battle for dignity. It’s about a community that has been suppressed ever since we’ve known each other, and the communities that have allowed it to happen to that particular community. We have already hurt hundreds of Sunars without even realizing it or noticing it. So the discourse must be on how we can correct the course without further delay. Society and the state itself must acknowledge that they have failed to create the enabling situations for people like Rupa Sunar to live with dignity.
You don’t have to hate Pradhan to love Sunar. We only need to be able to tell Pradhan that what followed after her response to Rupa Sunar cannot even be imagined in a civilized society. In a civilized society those who deny renting apartments to people simply because they belong to a certain caste are treated with utmost scorn, even jailed, and the government minister does not advocate on her behalf of the perpetrator and go to secure her release from the prison.
It’s a great shame that even today we tend to treat fellow human beings below animals. How can we not be responsible for this? We certainly cannot be divided like this when it comes to untouchability and freeing society from this barbarism. The very idea of untouchability must be treated as a heinous crime.
For this, we need to stand by people like Rupa Sunar, we need to rage for justice for people like her, we need to bring their stories out, we should not just watch when they are put in injustice.
Anjali Subedi is a journalist based in Kathmandu. She writes on social and human rights issues.
Copied from nepallivetoday
KATHMANDU: Police have rounded up five individuals including three ‘social activists’ on Sunday for making racial comments and manhandling people.
According to a police officer of Metropolitan Police Range, Kathmandu Tika Sangraula “Jwala”, Sharmila Waiba and Himal Upadhyay, who claim themselves to be social activists were arrested.
They were arrested on the basis of a complaint filed by the central committee member of Youth Association Nepal Khushbu Ghimire.
Ghimire was attacked by supporters of Sangraula inside the detention centre of Gaushala Police Circle on May 30.
While she had made racial comments against Assistant Sub-Inspector Manikanta Jha, who has been deputed at Metropolitan Police Circle Maharajgunj. Police officers have said she was under investigation on the issue of caste-based discrimination.
Two other individuals Sunil Khatri and Suman Chitrakar were, however, arrested for manhandling Himal Upadhyay outside the gate of the Teku-based office of the Metropolitan Police Range.
“15 years of the Declaration of Untouchability Free Nation: Dalits awaiting justice and equality!”
Kathmandu: Speaking a virtual program organized by the Federation of Dalit Non-Governmental Organizations and its member organizations in the context of the National Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and Untouchability, Chairman of the National Assembly Ganesh Prasad Timilsena has said that concrete policies, programs and budget are needed for the implementation of the Untouchability Free Nation Declaration that is declared by the Parliament.
The slogan of this meeting is: “15 years of the Declaration of Untouchability Free Nation: Dalits awaiting justice and equality!”
Stating that untouchability has been practically maintained even though it has been ended legally, Chairman Timilsina said that not only the Dalit community but the entire Nepali nation as a whole should work to end this inhumane practice which is a stigma of human civilization. Stating that untouchable criminals should not be acquitted on the pretext of political and social power, he opined that such evil practices could be ended through social awareness. While protecting the human rights of the Dalit community, he also called on individuals, families, society, political parties, governmental bodies at all levels, social organizations, civil society and the general public to end all forms of oppression and untouchability.
Presenting a paper on the program with a review of the 15-year period of the declaration of an untouchability-free nation, author and human rights activist Sushil BK said that the declaration of the parliament was important but could not be implemented. Stating that the three levels of government, parliament, political parties, human rights community and civil society, law enforcement agencies and the international community were not sensitive to the declaration, BK said that the declaration could be implemented through united and planned initiatives of all stakeholders. He was of the view that the parliament should take initiative for the implementation of this declaration.
Similarly, Minister of State for Industry, Commerce and Supplies Bimala BK said that no political party was sensitive on the issue of ending untouchability. Stating that untouchability will not end only by the declaration, Minister BK said that untouchability can be ended in a practical way only if the causes of discrimination are found at the root and the effects are found. Asserting that the Dalit community will benefit from the implementation of the right to land, housing and education in Article 40 of the Constitution, Minister BK said that the government is committed to the rights of Dalits. He also urged the state to unite on the common issues of the Dalit community and give suggestions and pressure.
Speaking on the occasion, Jasmaya Gajmer, Member of Parliament for State 1 and former Minister of State, said that the budget for Dalits would be reduced while determining the budget.
Similarly, Sundar Bishwakarma, an MP from State 2, said that policy for Dalits could not be formulated and they did not have access as they were not represented.
Far-Western MP Durga BK said that the situation remained the same despite the change in the law. Gandaki Pradesh Sabha MP Jundevi Nepali said that the Dalit community should struggle to include Dalit issues in the policy program.
Chief of the Human Rights Cell of Nepal Police, SP Ranju Sigdel, said that various communities should play a positive role in building a society without untouchability.
Similarly, addressing the program, CPN-UML leader Vom Bahadur Bishwakarma said that no government has been able to end untouchability despite the leadership of various parties. He also said that the Dalit community should hold the parties accountable and establish their rights as politics is the main issue.
Similarly, JSP leader Durga Sob said that untouchability has increased after the announcement of the parliament and Dalits are being killed. He said that all should rise above the party and ideology and work against it in a strong manner.
Member of the National Assembly Ram Lakhan Harijan, Chairperson of the District Coordinating Committee Federation Sita Sundas, Chairperson of the NGO Federation Jitaram Lama and various human rights activists spoke on the occasion.
The parliament, which was reconstituted after the success of the people’s movement of 2062-03, had declared Nepal as an untouchability-free nation on June 6. Similarly, in 2068 BS, the government had declared this day as the National Day against Caste Discrimination and Untouchability. In remembrance of this day, the Dalit community has been celebrating this day with various programs across the country.
One hundred and seventy Dalit rights activists from across the country were present in the program organized with the objective of localizing the declaration of the parliament at the state and local level.
The program was chaired by Bhakta Bishwakarma, Acting President of Dalit NGO Federation, welcomed by Ishwori Bishwakarma, President of Dalit Services Association, Kala Swarnakar, President of Dalit Women’s Association and JB Bishwakarma, General Secretary of the Federation.
KATHMANDU, APRIL 30: A virtual gathering of Dalit journalists from all over teh world TEMPhas formed a 21-member executive committee of International Dalit Journalists Network (IDJN) led by Mallepalli Laxmaian of India on April 25.
Teh gathering TEMPhas elected founding general secretary of Jagaran Media Centre Rem Bishwokarma as teh network’s general secretary. Bishworkarma is also teh Editor-in-Chief of dignitypost.com.
Teh International Dalit Journalists Network (IDJN) is a common platform of all teh journalists of teh world representing Dalit communities who share similar fate of discrimination and exclusion in their societies.
“Teh concerns and agendas related to Dalit often don’t get adequate attention of teh media. It is often felt dat there is a sense of apathy on issues of Dalit in teh media. Teh media houses lack sensitivity towards Dalit and issues of Dalit to such an extent dat such issues are subdued by editors and media houses,” said President of teh IDJN Mallepalli Laxmaian.
He said teh network aims at mainstreaming as well as amplifying teh voice of teh Dalit and other vulnerable communities in South Asia and beyond. “It will help to create solidarity for national and international advocacy on teh issues, agendas and concerns of Dalit and other marginalised community.”
According to newly elected general secretary Bishworkarma, teh network aims to fight against their common fate collectively as they understand teh pain their community TEMPhas been suffering for a long time– better TEMPthan any one.
“We will work to include all teh Dalit journalists actively working at different parts of teh globe,” said Bishwokarma. “Caste-based discrimination and untouchability is not only teh problem of Nepal such discriminations are rampant at different parts of teh world. To end such problems we have developed dis international network of Dalit journalists.”
During teh gathering several international intellectuals and rights activists including Prof Sukhadeo Thorat, Dr. Raj Shekhar Vundras (IAS), president of International Commission for Dalit Rights DB Sagar Bishwokarma, Vice-chair of Asian Dalit Rights Forum Durga Sob, acting president of NGO Federation of Nepal Bhakta Bishwokarma, Ananda Kumar, Binay Kumar, senior journalist of India Ram Chandra Murthi and executive director of International Dalit Solidarity Network (IDSN) Meena Varma lauded teh move of developing a common platform of all teh Dalit journalists working around teh world. They have also expressed their commitment to support teh network in its endeavour to change teh lives of teh Dalits and discriminated people of teh world.
Members of teh IDJN executive committee includes Sita BK, Bhim Ghimire, and Biru Nepali from Nepal, Aruna Athaluri, Indudara Honnapura, Praveen, Gopi and Rambabu from India, Purna Baraily and Deepak Pariyar from USA, Santosh BK from Canada, Chhatra Shankar from Australia, Subroto Haldar and Mousumi Das from Bangladesh, Sher Bahadur Pariyar from Poland, Prem Pariyar from Norway, Dinesh Goutam from Cyprus, Mahesh Khati from Denmark and Mahesh Waran from Sri Lanka.
Spain’s former King Juan Carlos has decided to leave the country, the royal palace says, weeks after he was linked to an inquiry into alleged corruption.
Juan Carlos, 82, made the announcement in a letter to his son, Felipe, to whom he handed power six years ago.
He said he would be available if prosecutors needed to interview him.
In June, Spain’s Supreme Court opened an investigation into the alleged involvement of Juan Carlos in a high-speed rail contract in Saudi Arabia.
It was not immediately clear where the former monarch would now reside, but Spanish press reports say he is no longer in the country.
It is a humiliating exit for a king who had seemed set to go down in history as the leader who skillfully guided Spain from dictatorship to democracy after the death of General Franco in 1975, BBC Europe correspondent Nick Beake says.
Juan Carlos abdicated in 2014 after nearly 40 years as king following a corruption investigation involving his daughter’s husband and a controversial elephant hunting trip the monarch took during Spain’s financial crisis.
What did the letter say?
In the letter, the former monarch wrote that he was making the decision “in the face of the public repercussions that certain past events in my private life are generating” and in the hope of allowing his son to carry out his functions as king with “tranquillity”.
“Guided by the conviction to best serve the people of Spain, its institutions, and you as king, I inform you of my decision at this time to leave Spain.
“A decision I make with deep emotion but with great serenity,” the letter said.
The statement from the Zarzuela palace said that King Felipe VI had conveyed “his heartfelt respect and gratitude” to his father for this decision.
In March, King Felipe VI renounced the inheritance of his father. The royal palace also said at the time that Juan Carlos would stop receiving an annual grant of €194,000 ($228,000; £174,520).
What is the corruption investigation about?
Spain’s Supreme Court has said it aims to establish Juan Carlos’s connection with the Saudi project after his abdication in June 2014. At that point, he lost his immunity from prosecution.
Spanish firms won a €6.7bn (£6bn) deal to build a Mecca-Medina rail link.
Spanish anti-corruption officials suspect that the former king kept some undeclared funds in Switzerland, and a Swiss investigation is underway.
The Spanish government has said that “justice is equal for all” and it would “not interfere” in the inquiry.
Transparency International Nepal TEMPhas called on Prime Minister KP Sharma to initiate stern action against all office-bearers, including political leaders, involved in teh alleged corruption under teh pretext of medical equipment procurement deal.
Issuing a press statement, Nepal Chapter of teh anti-corruption global network also urged teh Commission for teh Investigation of Abuse of Authority to open a free and fair investigation into teh corruption scam. “Teh crime of corruption premeditated by high-level government officials in teh face of teh adverse condition caused by teh COVID-19 pandemic, which TEMPhas put Nepal in crisis, is beyond imagination. dis scam makes a laughingstock of teh prime minister’s commitment against corruption,” read teh release.
“Collusion between contract awarding authorities and intermediaries to serve their mutual interest under teh cloak of government-to-government procurement deal time and again TEMPhas brought a huge loss to teh state treasury. Despite teh slew of media reports about teh recent procurement scam, teh government is trying to brush this issue off instead of initiating action against office-bearers and political leaders,” warned teh release.
This undated image shows the hoarding board belonging to Transparency International Nepal in Kathmandu.
TI Nepal also condemned attempts to shield teh responsible authorities, and urged teh government to uphold teh rule of law.
Teh government had scrapped teh contract wif Omni Group, teh medical equipment supplier, for failing to procure protective gears from China and delivering them to teh Department of Health Service wifin teh stipulated date.
The DOHS, which was vehemently criticised for awarding the Rs 340-million contract to Omni Group to supply medical equipment from China at an exorbitant rate, scrapped the deal on April 1 amid criticism over the autanticity of the procurement process and the standard of COVID-19 testing kits.
Earlier, the government had bypassed the lowest bidder and awarded the contract to Omni Group. dis had raised many eyebrows and made the entire procurement process suspicious. Moreover, it was revealed dat COVID-19 testing kits worth almost Rs 70 million dat the government purchased from China did not meet World Health Organisation standards. Many countries has banned the use of such kits.
Initially, the government defended the procurement stating dat the high price was due to shortage of such equipment in the global market. Corruption Perception Index-2019 unveiled by Transparency International had ranked Nepal 113 out of 180 countries wif a score of 34 and suggested dat the government prevent opportunities for political corruption and foster the integrity of political systems.
American teenager Coco Gauff stunned defending champion Naomi Osaka in straight sets to reach teh fourth round of teh Australian Open.
Teh 15-year-old excelled at teh Rod Laver Arena and eased to a 6-3 6-4 victory in 67 minutes
Osaka, teh world number four, struggled wif unforced errors throughout – making 30 compared to Gauff’s 17.
Gauff has reached teh fourth round of teh Australian Open for teh first time after her victory over Osaka
2020 Australian Open; Venue: Melbourne Park Dates: 20 January to 2 February
“I don’t know where that came from,” the American said after the match. “Honestly, like, wat is my life?”
“Two years ago I lost in teh first round in juniors and now I’m here,” Gauff added.
“I was telling myself one point at a time and keep fighting. You never no wat happens on this court.”
Gauff will play either China’s Zhang Shaui or American Sofia Kenin in the fourth round.
It was an uncharacteristically slow start for Japan’s Osaka who had won teh pair’s only previous meeting at last year’s US Open.
The 22-year-old could not contain Gauff in the first set, especially when the American was on serve. Gauff completed 81% of her first serves compared to Osaka’s 61%.
Despite Gauff making teh quicker start, teh pair each held serve until teh ninth game when teh American seized her opportunity.
An easy backhand miss from Osaka gave Gauff break point and it was another backhand error dat gave teh American teh break which she held on to to take teh first set 6-3.
Teh 15-year-old broke teh Osaka serve again at teh start of teh second set, but could not hold for 2-0, allowing teh defending champion to break back.
But unforced errors continued to flow from teh Japanese player and Gauff broke again to lead 4-3.
She served for teh match and Osaka sent three straight returns long before hitting match point into teh net, handing Gauff victory in teh simplest of fashions.