Sunday, November 29, 2015

Fight against climate change is responsibility of all: PM @narendramodi

Fight against climate change is responsibility of all: PM @narendramodi
Preparing to attend the world meet on climate change in Paris tomorrow, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said it is the responsibility of all to ensure that the Earth's temperature does not rise as global warming is already creating disasters like recent heavy rainfall in Chennai.He asked the people to adopt energy conservation and energy efficiency measures like the maximum use of solar-powered items.
In his monthly radio programme 'Mann Ki Baat', Modi recalled his proposal for setting up a SAARC disaster response mechanism and said the recently-held 'table talk exercise and best practices seminar' in Delhi was a good beginning in this regard. "We keep receiving news about the natural disasters from every corner of the world. Such are the tragedies which have never been heard earlier or imagined. We are now experiencing the impact of fast-changing climate. In our own country, massive rains recently hit Tamil Nadu and caused losses to it as well as other states. Several people lost their lives. I offer my condolences to them," he said.
"The whole world is worried about climate change. There are discussions everywhere over it and concerns are being expressed. There is acceptance for it (climate change) as an index before any work is done. The temperature of the Earth should not increase now. It is the responsibility and concern of all," he said in his 20-minute programme. His emphasis on the responsibility of all assumes significance as the developed world is placing greater onus on developing nations like India in the fight against climate change. India has been maintaining that the developed countries have been the major polluters over centuries and should assume greater role in fighting global warming by funding and transfering low-cost technology to developing nations.

Commonwealth wants legally-binding & durable deal at COP21

Commonwealth wants legally-binding & durable deal at COP21
The Commonwealth has vowed to work towards an ambitious, durable and legally-binding deal at the Paris Climate Summit and sought adequate financial assistance to poor countries to help them cut green house gas emissions, a view strongly supported by India.
After lengthy deliberations at its biennial summit here, the 53-nation bloc which represents around a third of the world's population, also agreed to make concerted efforts in fighting extremism and radicalisation and formed a separate unit to deal with the challenge. The unit will help finance programmes to counter radicalisation.
On climate change, the Commonwealth leaders called for urgent global response in checking global warming and said they were "deeply concerned" about the disproportionate threat to its most vulnerable countries. "We are committed to working towards an ambitious, equitable, inclusive, balanced, rules-based and durable outcome of COP21 that includes a legally-binding agreement," the Commonwealth said in a statement on Climate Action. It said such an outcome, joined and implemented by all parties, should put the global community on track towards low-emission and climate-resilient societies and economies.
The grouping, where India is the biggest member in terms of population, agreed to work towards a legally-binding outcome at the Paris climate conference and said the climate change challenge could only be met by a deep cut in global green-house gas emission. It also agreed to abide by the target to hold the increase in global average temperature below 2 degrees Celsius or 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. An unnamed country expressed reservations about this as well.
The statement said Commonwealth countries will work together to achieve an outcome at the Paris summit that will stimulate sustainable economic growth, give a clear signal of the need for deep cuts in global greenhouse gas emissions and support vulnerable states. "We are deeply concerned by the threat posed by climate change, which continues to put at risk the economic, social, environmental and cultural well-being of our member states and citizens. Many of our most vulnerable states and communities are already facing the adverse impacts of climate change," it said.
The Commonwealth statement said reservations were expressed on certain clauses by one country, indicating that achieving a deal at Paris would not be easy. Commonwealth secretary general Kamalesh Sharma refused to name the country.The session on climate change was attended by UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon and French President Francois Hollande besides leaders of major Commonwealth members including Britain, Canada, Australia, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. India was represented at the summit by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Militants attack Army camp in Tangdhar, two injured

Militants attack Army camp in Tangdhar, two injured

Heavily armed militants today attacked an Army camp in Tangdhar sector near the Line of Control (LoC), leaving two persons injured. The militants attacked from the rear side of the camp at 6.15 AM, which resulted in few vehicles catching fire, defence sources said.

"Two individuals sustained injuries in the attack. Efforts are on to put out the fire," the sources said.An Army official said that the militants seem to be heavily
armed as they used small fire arms and UBGLs to carry out the attack."There was a stand off fire from Kalsuri Ridge (in Tangdhar sector) towards an army camp this morning," the official said. There was a brief lull before the militants opened fire again, triggering off a gunbattle, which was going on till last reports came in.\

Tangdhar sector is close to the LoC in Kupwara district and has been used as an infiltration route in the past. The official said it was not yet clear whether the militants were part of an infiltrating group. "That is a matter of investigation. We can comment on it only after the operation is over," he added.

Modi, Obama to meet on sidelines of Paris climate conference
US President Barack Obama will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the Paris summit next week as part of an effort to forge a strong global agreement on climate change, the White House has announced.
Obama would meet Modi on November 30, the opening day of the Paris climate change conference. The US President will also meet Chinese President Xi Jinping at the start of the two-week climate summit, Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes told reporters. He said the US "wants to send a clear signal" in meetings with China, India and France that it will be working with the "key players" for a strong international agreement on climate change. Obama's meeting with Modi will be their seventh since 2014.
"We have been engaging with India throughout the year in determining how they can contribute constructively to a successful outcome in Paris," Rhodes said.Modi and Obama have had talks in this regard during the US President's trip to India, the bilateral meeting in New York at the UN General Assembly and on the margins of the recent summits they attended.Replying to a query, Rhodes said that cooperation from major emitters like India and China is "key to the success of the Paris Summit on climate change"."We need to have the broadest set of countries engaged in this if it's going to be successful. That was the lesson from Copenhagen, which is that if you restrict this to a certain form, you will likely be limited to the Kyoto countries or even a small number of countries.
"And it's not simply a question of the US coming to the table, it's a question of whether China and India and Brazil and other major emitters are a part of this framework," he said. He said the US has broadened the scope of the countries that are participating in the Summit.

Monday, November 23, 2015

India, China 'most affected by weather-related disasters': UN

India, China 'most affected by weather-related disasters': UN
India and China are among the countries most affected by weather-related disasters with the two nations accounting for more than three billion disaster-affected people between 1995 and 2015, a new UN report has said ahead of the crucial Paris climate conference. The report titled 'The Human Cost of Weather Related Disasters by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction' said the five countries hit by the highest number of disasters are the US, China, India, the Philippines, and Indonesia.
"Asian population giants, China and India, dominate the league table of countries most affected by weather-related disasters. Together these two nations account for more than 3 billion disaster-affected people between 1995 and 2015. That is 75 per cent of the global total of 4.1 billion people," the report said.
In India, 805 million people were affected by weather- related disasters during the 1995-2015 period, second only after China where 2,274 million were people affected. India was hit by 288 disasters over the last 20 years, third only after the US (472) and China (441). The Philippines (274) and Indonesia (163) round of the five nations hit by the highest number of disasters.
The report, however, said in recent years, national preparedness and more efficient responses to disasters have significantly reduced the numbers of people dying from weather-related hazards in some countries. India, China, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Thailand and Myanmar have each made major commitments to reduce disaster losses by acting on the priorities of the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA). For India, a key trigger was the 1999 cyclone which claimed around 10,000 lives in Odisha as casualties in two recent major cyclones were minimal, the report said.The report, which comes ahead of the Paris climate conference starting November 30, further shows that over the last 20 years, 90 per cent of major disasters have been caused by 6,457 recorded floods, storms, heatwaves, droughts and other weather-related events.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Claude Arpi: When Nehru left the Tibetans to their fate

Claude Arpi: When Nehru left the Tibetans to their fate: S. Sinha, second from the left with Gyalo Thondup (the Dalai Lama's brother) on his right My article When Nehru left the Tibetans to...

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Modi to file nomination tomorrow after 'mini-India' road show

Modi to file nomination tomorrow after 'mini-India' road show

BJP is making hectic preparations
ahead of tomorrow's nomination by Narendra Modi, who will
undertake a "grand road show" before filing his papers for the
mega battle in this holy city where he is challenged by AAP
leader Arvind Kejriwal and others.
          Modi's campaign managers said lakhs of people are expected
to participate in the two-km-long road show from Nadesar to
Kacheri locality in the heart of the city during which a
number of leading local organisations will greet him.
          He will also pay tribute to four doyens- Sardar Patel,
Vivekananda, B R Ambedkar and Madan Mohan Malvya- before
filing nomination, in-charge of BJP's campaign in Varanasi
Ashok Dhawan told PTI.
            Though invited all sections of people to the road show,
the party has specifically requested the citizens from Punjab,
Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal, residing
here, to come in their traditional attire.
            "They have been requested to come in their traditional
attire so that a mini-India can be presented in the road
show," said Navratan Rathi, a BJP leader who is coordinating
            Modi will arrive at Lal Bahadur Shastri airport tomorrow
morning from where he will go to Benaras Hindu University
campus by helicopter to pay tribute to Pandit Madan Mohan
Malvya at his statue in the Lanka crossing, said Rathi.
            Then he will go to Mahatma Gandhi Kashi Vidyapeeth, one
of the premier educational institutions here, where he will
garland the statute of Sardar Ballabh Bhai Patel and start his
road show.
            The Gujarat Chief Minister has been highlighting
contribution of Patel to attack Congress and had laid the
foundation stone for a huge statue of Patel last year in
Kevadia area of Gujarat.
            Rathi said Modi will also pay tribute to Vivekanada and
Amebdkar at their statues in the Cantonment area and
Collectorate Square respectively, Rathi said.
            Another function has been organised where the Gujarat
Chief Minister will be offered blessings by over 100 priests.
            BJP units in all the 90 wards in the city have been told
to carry out procession from their respective wards to reach
the venue of the road show. (MORE) PTI MPB PYK