CONFERENCE ON SOUTH ASIAN CONFLICTS UNDERLINES SPIRITUALITY AND PEACE AS THE WAYS FORWARD

13 04 2008

Oslo meet favours spreading awareness on Naxal threat
courtesy: zee news
Oslo, April 12: Bringing together top leaders and experts from diverse backgrounds, a conference on peace and reconciliation in South Asia here has favoured efforts to spread awareness in Europe on the problem of Naxalism faced by India and ways to resolve it.

The conference, which focused on the internal armed conflicts in India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Nepal, concluded yesterday calling upon all the stakeholders to opt for peaceful means and restraint while dealing with their respective situations.

“The problem of Naxalism has grown exponentially in the past few years. It is being identified by the Indian government as the single most dangerous internal security threat and affects nearly one-third of the total districts,” Spiritual Guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, whose `The Art of Living Foundation` organised the meet, said.

“It is very important that it comes to the notice of international community, especially European nations, who can further help us in dealing with it,” he said.

“Also, through this conference, we appeal to Sri Lankan government, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), Buddhist monks in China, Chinese government, Myanmar regime…Everyone for peace and restraint, and to have a preference for coming to the table for resolution of issues,” the Indian spiritual guru said in his concluding remarks yesterday.

He insisted that in present circumstances, “spirituality” was the only option left for a credible, long-term solution to the problems.

Bureau Report

Attached Photo Captions:
Picture 1: Speakers, at the conference on Peace and Reconciliation in South Asia, with His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. Sri Lankan minister Thondaman, MDMK leader Vaiko, European parliament members Erika Mann and Nirj Deva are seen. The two-day conference, held in Oslo, ended on late evening, April 11, 2008.
Picture 2: (From L to R ) Mr. Khin Maung Win, Deputy Executive Director, Democratic Voice of Burma, Norway, Rt. Rev. Dr. Brahmanawatte Seevali Nayaka Thero, Deputy Secretary General, Sri Lanka Amarapura Mahanikaya, Mr. Arumugam Thondaman, Minister for Youth Empowerment & Socio-Economic Development, Sri Lanka, His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Ms. Erika Mann, Member of European Parliament, Mr. Vaiko, General Secretary, The Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK), Tamil Nadu, India, Mr. Ramvichar Netam, Home Minister of Chhattisgarh, India at the at the two-day conference on Peace and Reconciliation in South Asia, Oslo, which ended on late evening, April 11, 2008.
Picture 3: Hundreds of people participate in the peace march organised by the Art of Living Foundation in Oslo on April 10 as a prelude to the two-day Conference on Peace and Reconciliation in South Asia.
Picture 4: His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar addressing the two-day conference on Peace and Reconciliation in South Asia in Oslo. The conference concluded on late evening, April 11, 2008
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CONFERENCE ON SOUTH ASIAN CONFLICTS UNDERLINES SPIRITUALITY AND PEACE AS THE WAYS FORWARD

13 04 2008

Oslo meet favours spreading awareness on Naxal threat
courtesy: zee news
Oslo, April 12: Bringing together top leaders and experts from diverse backgrounds, a conference on peace and reconciliation in South Asia here has favoured efforts to spread awareness in Europe on the problem of Naxalism faced by India and ways to resolve it.

The conference, which focused on the internal armed conflicts in India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Nepal, concluded yesterday calling upon all the stakeholders to opt for peaceful means and restraint while dealing with their respective situations.

“The problem of Naxalism has grown exponentially in the past few years. It is being identified by the Indian government as the single most dangerous internal security threat and affects nearly one-third of the total districts,” Spiritual Guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, whose `The Art of Living Foundation` organised the meet, said.

“It is very important that it comes to the notice of international community, especially European nations, who can further help us in dealing with it,” he said.

“Also, through this conference, we appeal to Sri Lankan government, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), Buddhist monks in China, Chinese government, Myanmar regime…Everyone for peace and restraint, and to have a preference for coming to the table for resolution of issues,” the Indian spiritual guru said in his concluding remarks yesterday.

He insisted that in present circumstances, “spirituality” was the only option left for a credible, long-term solution to the problems.

Bureau Report

Attached Photo Captions:
Picture 1: Speakers, at the conference on Peace and Reconciliation in South Asia, with His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. Sri Lankan minister Thondaman, MDMK leader Vaiko, European parliament members Erika Mann and Nirj Deva are seen. The two-day conference, held in Oslo, ended on late evening, April 11, 2008.
Picture 2: (From L to R ) Mr. Khin Maung Win, Deputy Executive Director, Democratic Voice of Burma, Norway, Rt. Rev. Dr. Brahmanawatte Seevali Nayaka Thero, Deputy Secretary General, Sri Lanka Amarapura Mahanikaya, Mr. Arumugam Thondaman, Minister for Youth Empowerment & Socio-Economic Development, Sri Lanka, His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Ms. Erika Mann, Member of European Parliament, Mr. Vaiko, General Secretary, The Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK), Tamil Nadu, India, Mr. Ramvichar Netam, Home Minister of Chhattisgarh, India at the at the two-day conference on Peace and Reconciliation in South Asia, Oslo, which ended on late evening, April 11, 2008.
Picture 3: Hundreds of people participate in the peace march organised by the Art of Living Foundation in Oslo on April 10 as a prelude to the two-day Conference on Peace and Reconciliation in South Asia.
Picture 4: His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar addressing the two-day conference on Peace and Reconciliation in South Asia in Oslo. The conference concluded on late evening, April 11, 2008




Naxal Exhibition: Preview

8 04 2008
FACT India
Naxalism: A Threat to Unified India

Click here for a miniature view of the exhib
Opens :::
April 10th and 11th Oslo, during the Conference on Peace and Reconciliation http://www.sap2008.org/

Ingeniørenes Hus Møtesenter, Kronprinsens gate 17, 0251 Oslo – Norway, http://www.ingeniorenesh

The Exhibition is a reflection of the Left wing insurgency in India, a blend of photographs, statistics and an analysis that forms the presentation of FACTS. The exhibition travels through the lives of the victims in Naxal infested states and present their lives as well as the lives of those valiant fighters both civilian and from the government. It is a fight against, the act of killing just because ideologies differ. The ideology of Intolerance and disharmony aided by violence, is taking a toll on the very same people, the ideology claims to be fighting for. Here we have been working on a series of issues on Naxalism and the havoc it has created over the years on the Indian populace and threat it poses to the unity of India.

“Its (Maoism’s) purpose is to destroy an existing society and its institutions and to replace them with a completely new structure.” – Mao Tse-Tung

Well-educated Naxalites leaders have taken advantage of the dissatisfaction among the poor and uneducated population by offering them an alternative way to growth and development.

After fighting each other and splitting like an amoeba, today there are many Maoist parties and organizations that either predate the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) or emerged from factions when the CPI-ML split after the death of Charu Mazumdar. Communist Party of India (Maoist) is the consolidated destructive form of the Leftwing extremism that has been creating more problems to the poor than fighting them on their behalf.

Maoist rebels have been attacking innocent villagers without reason and destroying public facilities like Hospitals, Schools, rail, road transport, power transmission and communication facilities which are crucial for the local communities. Armed naxals have denied the basic amenities to the poor and under privileged in the name of liberating them.

The Left wing terror has lead to massacre of politicians in Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, and Andhra Pradesh apart from killing innocent civilians. Human rights violations have become a part of their daily routine with women being raped, children taken away as child soldiers and couriers while pushing interior areas into a humanitarian crisis and away from development. While their resolutions claim and boast of a free and egalitarian society the Left wing terror group has itself been plagued with caste differences and inequality.

In the name of “supporting oppressed nationalities” the communist terrorists now have developed nexus with extremist organizations in Kashmir, Assam, Nagaland, Manipur and abroad. In the name of a “UF (United Front) of all secular forces” they have been trying to create divisions among Muslims, Christians and Sikhs. While many of the cadres have been deserting the party, frustrated and realizing what a hollow ideology of hate they have been blindly following, the terror perpetrators are hounding those who have left the so-called “movement”.

This Exhibition has been brought to you by FACT India through an extensive field study, and thanks to extensive media coverage of the problem and we would like to acknowledge the sources websites of Ministry of Home affairs and South Asia terrorism Portal.

FACT India is a Registered Trust. Contributions are welcome and donations are exempt under Section 80 G of the IT Act.

FACT India
41, Jor Bagh, New Delhi 110 003, India.

The world should stand beside Tibet

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/04/09/EDE11024F5.DTL

As a Tibetan, it is bittersweet to see Tibet on the front pages. The world is finally seeing Beijing’s repressive rule there, but the tragedy is that it has required such bloodshed. As Chinese forces now attempt to crush the protests, the crisis in Tibet has laid bare two important issues: the Tibetan people’s unresolved demands, and how these aspirations impact Tibet, the world and China itself.

For more than 50 years, Tibet has been a land of simmering resentment. Tibetans have various grievances, but the common thread is that Tibetans want what all nations want: to control their own lives, society and religion. Tibetans are not simply protesting specific policies; they are demanding their right to self-determination. It is no coincidence that in many protests, Tibetans are attacking symbols of state power, ripping down the Chinese flag and replacing it with the banned Tibetan one.

Unlike the demonstrations in the 1980s, the protests have spread far beyond the capital, Lhasa, to towns and villages across Tibet. Tibetan exiles are staging sympathy protests worldwide, including when Beijing’s Olympic torch comes through San Francisco today. These actions feed off one another, thanks to the Internet, digital cameras, cell phones and shortwave radio. This unity among Tibetans inside and outside Tibet represents a far stronger challenge to Chinese rule than before, and will give Tibetans renewed inspiration regardless of whether the protests in Tibet are temporarily suppressed.

For the international community, it is now impossible to accept Beijing’s narrative that Tibetans are happy as part of China. The economic growth that Beijing touts in Tibet is exposed as a synonym for Chinese colonization. The world now sees that, like East Timor and other former colonies, the Tibetan people’s demand for freedom may be temporarily repressed but is destined to boil over. The only question is whether the world will do anything to support these legitimate aspirations.

China’s self-absorbed myth that it “liberated” grateful Tibetans has also been shattered; its central narrative justifying Tibet’s place in its empire has vanished. Its policy of “Sinicizing” Tibet through immigration of Chinese settlers and vilifying His Holiness the Dalai Lama is just adding fuel to the fire. For the first time, Beijing has actually admitted that the Tibetan protests are widespread and conducted on a large scale.

Beijing has now resorted to a new propaganda tactic, casting Tibetans as violent criminals and Chinese as victims. This is largely because Beijing needed a domestic response to images seeping into China of Chinese forces attacking Tibetan protesters. State-controlled media are now broadcasting images of Tibetans attacking Chinese settlers; ignoring, of course, that the demonstrations in Lhasa were peaceful for days, and that most other Tibetan protests have been wholly nonviolent (the same cannot be said for Chinese forces, who used live ammunition against unarmed Tibetan protesters. The result of China’s new propaganda strategy has been to create an “us versus them” backlash among many Chinese vis-À-vis Tibetans. This is a reckless and potentially dangerous incitement of Chinese nationalism, but also has the effect of changing Chinese perceptions of Tibet. Tibetans are no longer portrayed as colorful if slightly backward “minorities.” Tibetans are now ungrateful colonial subjects in open rebellion. This is significant, because recognition of the difference between Tibetans and Chinese is the first step to recognition that Tibet is not China.

Looking forward, as with many colonized nations, there comes a tipping point when a sufficient number of people rise up and say “enough.” That point has been reached in Tibet. Ngawang Sangdrol, a Tibetan nun who became a political prisoner at age 12, once declared, “There is fire inside our bodies, but we dare not let the smoke out.” Now, the smoke has escaped, and for Tibetans in Tibet and across the Tibetan diaspora, there is a renewed push for freedom. And China? China will resist losing its colony, but then so did France with Algeria, Serbia with Kosovo, and Imperial Japan with Manchukuo.

The magnitude and vociferousness of the protests across Tibet demonstrate that Beijing cannot forever contain Tibetan demands for self-rule. Trying to do so only leads to instability. Through their courage and resilience in the face of a half-century of military occupation and religious and cultural oppression, Tibetans have made it abundantly clear that they want more than ever to determine their own future. The world should stand by their side.

Nima R. Taylor Binara is a member of the board of directors of Tibet Justice Center, a not-for-profit organization based in Berkeley that advocates the Tibetan people’s right to self-determination. www.tibetjustice.org.

This article appeared on page B – 9 of the San Francisco Chronicle

Olympic Protests Focus On Tibet’s Struggle

Learn History Behind Tibet, China’s Troubled Relationship

POSTED: 4:37 pm CDT April 7, 2008
As the eyes of the world begin to turn to the upcoming Olympic Games in Beijing, the focus has been straying from the athletic competition.Controversy is swirling around the upcoming international event because of many facets of Chinese policies and politics. But one issue has risen to the forefront: Tibet.Protests and demonstrations have erupted in many countries across the world, speaking out against the cultural repression and violence that has revitalized Tibet’s struggle for independence from China.Tibet, also known by the People’s Republic of China (PRC) as the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR), is the second-largest province in China. TAR incorporates about half of historical Tibet, consisting of Ü-Tsang and western Kham, while the Tibetan Autonomous Prefectures and Counties are part of Quinghai, Gansu, Yunnan and Sichuan. The borders roughly correspond with the actual zone of governmental control before 1959, when Tibet was self-governing.Tibet’s struggle for independence from China began centuries ago, when the Qing Dynasty put Amdo under Chinese rule in 1724. Four years later, eastern Kham was also incorporated into the neighboring Chinese provinces.However, Tibet as we know it today has been seeking independence from China for nearly a century. After the British invasion of Tibet ended in the early 1900s, Britain acknowledged China’s control over Tibet in the Anglo-Russian Convention of 1907, by stating that it would “not to enter into negotiations with Tibet except through the intermediary of the Chinese Government.”

After World War I

After World War I and the decentralization of China’s government, Tibet enjoyed a brief period of self-governance wherein the 13th Dalai Lama, Thubten Gyatso, ruled in peace until his death in 1933.Despite this apparent independence, neither the Republic of China nor the PRC ever renounced China’s sovereignty over Tibet and in 1950 the People’s Liberation Army invaded and crushed the ill-equipped Tibetan forces. After the Seventeen Point Agreement was signed in 1951, Tibet was officially incorporated into the PRC.Still, the Tibet outlined in the Seventeen Point Agreement was to be a highly autonomous region ruled by the Dalai Lama, and was confined to the modern borders known today. The rest of historical Tibet was subject to land redistribution, which resulted in the first of many rebellions from monks and Tibetan noblemen.

Rebellions, Protests And Unrest

Though the rebellion had outside support, including the help of the American CIA, it was crushed in 1959. Thousands of Tibetans were killed, and the Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, fled to exile in India where he currently resides in Dharamsala.Today, Tibet is nominally governed by the Central Tibetan Administration, also known as the Government of Tibet in Exile, though due to recent unrest, China has tightened its central control.Peaceful protests began on March 10 when hundreds of monks from Drepung monastery called for an end to religious restrictions and the release of imprisoned monks. Protests spread rapidly throughout Tibetan populated areas, and concerns of human rights violations lit up across the globe as the Olympic torch makes its way to Beijing.The protests quickly escalated away from nonviolent displays of dissent and developed into riots, resulting in many arrests and deaths — exact numbers of which are unclear due to conflicting reports from China and the Government of Tibet in Exile.Beijing has blamed the Dalai Lama and his followers for inciting the ongoing violence as an attempt to sabotage the Olympics, an allegation the religious and political leader vehemently denies.The exiled spiritual leader has repeatedly condemned violence, and has pleaded with the international community to instigate an objective probe to discover what really may have happened when the Buddhist monks clashed with the Chinese forces.

An Olympic Boycott?

International powers certainly have shown an interest in the conflict. French President Nicolas Sarkozy has stated that he may boycott the opening ceremony if China continues to crackdown on Tibet, and Prince Charles has said that he would skip the Olympics altogether.Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and members of Congress also drafted a house resolution calling on the PRC to end its arrests of nonviolent Tibetan protests, and its ongoing cultural, religious and economic repression in Tibet. Resolution 1077 calls on the Chinese government to begin dialogue with the Dalai Lama and find a long-term solution that will respect the human rights of Tibetans.China has voiced dissatisfaction over foreign discussions of the situation in Tibet during European Union foreign ministers’ discussion in Slovenia.”The Tibet issue is completely China’s internal affairs. No foreign countries or international organizations have the right to interfere in it,” said Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu, according to the official Xinhua news agency.The Dalai Lama has expressed that he does not seek the separation of Tibet from China, and instead hopes for “meaningful self-rule” while remaining a part of China. The holy man has insisted that he is willing to work with Chinese authorities to achieve peace and stability in the region.

http://www.fact-india.com





Naxal Exhibition: Preview

8 04 2008
FACT India
Naxalism: A Threat to Unified India

Click here for a miniature view of the exhib
Opens :::
April 10th and 11th Oslo, during the Conference on Peace and Reconciliation http://www.sap2008.org/

Ingeniørenes Hus Møtesenter, Kronprinsens gate 17, 0251 Oslo – Norway, http://www.ingeniorenesh

The Exhibition is a reflection of the Left wing insurgency in India, a blend of photographs, statistics and an analysis that forms the presentation of FACTS. The exhibition travels through the lives of the victims in Naxal infested states and present their lives as well as the lives of those valiant fighters both civilian and from the government. It is a fight against, the act of killing just because ideologies differ. The ideology of Intolerance and disharmony aided by violence, is taking a toll on the very same people, the ideology claims to be fighting for. Here we have been working on a series of issues on Naxalism and the havoc it has created over the years on the Indian populace and threat it poses to the unity of India.

“Its (Maoism’s) purpose is to destroy an existing society and its institutions and to replace them with a completely new structure.” – Mao Tse-Tung

Well-educated Naxalites leaders have taken advantage of the dissatisfaction among the poor and uneducated population by offering them an alternative way to growth and development.

After fighting each other and splitting like an amoeba, today there are many Maoist parties and organizations that either predate the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) or emerged from factions when the CPI-ML split after the death of Charu Mazumdar. Communist Party of India (Maoist) is the consolidated destructive form of the Leftwing extremism that has been creating more problems to the poor than fighting them on their behalf.

Maoist rebels have been attacking innocent villagers without reason and destroying public facilities like Hospitals, Schools, rail, road transport, power transmission and communication facilities which are crucial for the local communities. Armed naxals have denied the basic amenities to the poor and under privileged in the name of liberating them.

The Left wing terror has lead to massacre of politicians in Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, and Andhra Pradesh apart from killing innocent civilians. Human rights violations have become a part of their daily routine with women being raped, children taken away as child soldiers and couriers while pushing interior areas into a humanitarian crisis and away from development. While their resolutions claim and boast of a free and egalitarian society the Left wing terror group has itself been plagued with caste differences and inequality.

In the name of “supporting oppressed nationalities” the communist terrorists now have developed nexus with extremist organizations in Kashmir, Assam, Nagaland, Manipur and abroad. In the name of a “UF (United Front) of all secular forces” they have been trying to create divisions among Muslims, Christians and Sikhs. While many of the cadres have been deserting the party, frustrated and realizing what a hollow ideology of hate they have been blindly following, the terror perpetrators are hounding those who have left the so-called “movement”.

This Exhibition has been brought to you by FACT India through an extensive field study, and thanks to extensive media coverage of the problem and we would like to acknowledge the sources websites of Ministry of Home affairs and South Asia terrorism Portal.

FACT India is a Registered Trust. Contributions are welcome and donations are exempt under Section 80 G of the IT Act.

FACT India
41, Jor Bagh, New Delhi 110 003, India.

The world should stand beside Tibet

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/04/09/EDE11024F5.DTL

As a Tibetan, it is bittersweet to see Tibet on the front pages. The world is finally seeing Beijing’s repressive rule there, but the tragedy is that it has required such bloodshed. As Chinese forces now attempt to crush the protests, the crisis in Tibet has laid bare two important issues: the Tibetan people’s unresolved demands, and how these aspirations impact Tibet, the world and China itself.

For more than 50 years, Tibet has been a land of simmering resentment. Tibetans have various grievances, but the common thread is that Tibetans want what all nations want: to control their own lives, society and religion. Tibetans are not simply protesting specific policies; they are demanding their right to self-determination. It is no coincidence that in many protests, Tibetans are attacking symbols of state power, ripping down the Chinese flag and replacing it with the banned Tibetan one.

Unlike the demonstrations in the 1980s, the protests have spread far beyond the capital, Lhasa, to towns and villages across Tibet. Tibetan exiles are staging sympathy protests worldwide, including when Beijing’s Olympic torch comes through San Francisco today. These actions feed off one another, thanks to the Internet, digital cameras, cell phones and shortwave radio. This unity among Tibetans inside and outside Tibet represents a far stronger challenge to Chinese rule than before, and will give Tibetans renewed inspiration regardless of whether the protests in Tibet are temporarily suppressed.

For the international community, it is now impossible to accept Beijing’s narrative that Tibetans are happy as part of China. The economic growth that Beijing touts in Tibet is exposed as a synonym for Chinese colonization. The world now sees that, like East Timor and other former colonies, the Tibetan people’s demand for freedom may be temporarily repressed but is destined to boil over. The only question is whether the world will do anything to support these legitimate aspirations.

China’s self-absorbed myth that it “liberated” grateful Tibetans has also been shattered; its central narrative justifying Tibet’s place in its empire has vanished. Its policy of “Sinicizing” Tibet through immigration of Chinese settlers and vilifying His Holiness the Dalai Lama is just adding fuel to the fire. For the first time, Beijing has actually admitted that the Tibetan protests are widespread and conducted on a large scale.

Beijing has now resorted to a new propaganda tactic, casting Tibetans as violent criminals and Chinese as victims. This is largely because Beijing needed a domestic response to images seeping into China of Chinese forces attacking Tibetan protesters. State-controlled media are now broadcasting images of Tibetans attacking Chinese settlers; ignoring, of course, that the demonstrations in Lhasa were peaceful for days, and that most other Tibetan protests have been wholly nonviolent (the same cannot be said for Chinese forces, who used live ammunition against unarmed Tibetan protesters. The result of China’s new propaganda strategy has been to create an “us versus them” backlash among many Chinese vis-À-vis Tibetans. This is a reckless and potentially dangerous incitement of Chinese nationalism, but also has the effect of changing Chinese perceptions of Tibet. Tibetans are no longer portrayed as colorful if slightly backward “minorities.” Tibetans are now ungrateful colonial subjects in open rebellion. This is significant, because recognition of the difference between Tibetans and Chinese is the first step to recognition that Tibet is not China.

Looking forward, as with many colonized nations, there comes a tipping point when a sufficient number of people rise up and say “enough.” That point has been reached in Tibet. Ngawang Sangdrol, a Tibetan nun who became a political prisoner at age 12, once declared, “There is fire inside our bodies, but we dare not let the smoke out.” Now, the smoke has escaped, and for Tibetans in Tibet and across the Tibetan diaspora, there is a renewed push for freedom. And China? China will resist losing its colony, but then so did France with Algeria, Serbia with Kosovo, and Imperial Japan with Manchukuo.

The magnitude and vociferousness of the protests across Tibet demonstrate that Beijing cannot forever contain Tibetan demands for self-rule. Trying to do so only leads to instability. Through their courage and resilience in the face of a half-century of military occupation and religious and cultural oppression, Tibetans have made it abundantly clear that they want more than ever to determine their own future. The world should stand by their side.

Nima R. Taylor Binara is a member of the board of directors of Tibet Justice Center, a not-for-profit organization based in Berkeley that advocates the Tibetan people’s right to self-determination. www.tibetjustice.org.

This article appeared on page B – 9 of the San Francisco Chronicle

Olympic Protests Focus On Tibet’s Struggle

Learn History Behind Tibet, China’s Troubled Relationship

POSTED: 4:37 pm CDT April 7, 2008
As the eyes of the world begin to turn to the upcoming Olympic Games in Beijing, the focus has been straying from the athletic competition.Controversy is swirling around the upcoming international event because of many facets of Chinese policies and politics. But one issue has risen to the forefront: Tibet.Protests and demonstrations have erupted in many countries across the world, speaking out against the cultural repression and violence that has revitalized Tibet’s struggle for independence from China.Tibet, also known by the People’s Republic of China (PRC) as the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR), is the second-largest province in China. TAR incorporates about half of historical Tibet, consisting of Ü-Tsang and western Kham, while the Tibetan Autonomous Prefectures and Counties are part of Quinghai, Gansu, Yunnan and Sichuan. The borders roughly correspond with the actual zone of governmental control before 1959, when Tibet was self-governing.Tibet’s struggle for independence from China began centuries ago, when the Qing Dynasty put Amdo under Chinese rule in 1724. Four years later, eastern Kham was also incorporated into the neighboring Chinese provinces.However, Tibet as we know it today has been seeking independence from China for nearly a century. After the British invasion of Tibet ended in the early 1900s, Britain acknowledged China’s control over Tibet in the Anglo-Russian Convention of 1907, by stating that it would “not to enter into negotiations with Tibet except through the intermediary of the Chinese Government.”

After World War I

After World War I and the decentralization of China’s government, Tibet enjoyed a brief period of self-governance wherein the 13th Dalai Lama, Thubten Gyatso, ruled in peace until his death in 1933.Despite this apparent independence, neither the Republic of China nor the PRC ever renounced China’s sovereignty over Tibet and in 1950 the People’s Liberation Army invaded and crushed the ill-equipped Tibetan forces. After the Seventeen Point Agreement was signed in 1951, Tibet was officially incorporated into the PRC.Still, the Tibet outlined in the Seventeen Point Agreement was to be a highly autonomous region ruled by the Dalai Lama, and was confined to the modern borders known today. The rest of historical Tibet was subject to land redistribution, which resulted in the first of many rebellions from monks and Tibetan noblemen.

Rebellions, Protests And Unrest

Though the rebellion had outside support, including the help of the American CIA, it was crushed in 1959. Thousands of Tibetans were killed, and the Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, fled to exile in India where he currently resides in Dharamsala.Today, Tibet is nominally governed by the Central Tibetan Administration, also known as the Government of Tibet in Exile, though due to recent unrest, China has tightened its central control.Peaceful protests began on March 10 when hundreds of monks from Drepung monastery called for an end to religious restrictions and the release of imprisoned monks. Protests spread rapidly throughout Tibetan populated areas, and concerns of human rights violations lit up across the globe as the Olympic torch makes its way to Beijing.The protests quickly escalated away from nonviolent displays of dissent and developed into riots, resulting in many arrests and deaths — exact numbers of which are unclear due to conflicting reports from China and the Government of Tibet in Exile.Beijing has blamed the Dalai Lama and his followers for inciting the ongoing violence as an attempt to sabotage the Olympics, an allegation the religious and political leader vehemently denies.The exiled spiritual leader has repeatedly condemned violence, and has pleaded with the international community to instigate an objective probe to discover what really may have happened when the Buddhist monks clashed with the Chinese forces.

An Olympic Boycott?

International powers certainly have shown an interest in the conflict. French President Nicolas Sarkozy has stated that he may boycott the opening ceremony if China continues to crackdown on Tibet, and Prince Charles has said that he would skip the Olympics altogether.Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and members of Congress also drafted a house resolution calling on the PRC to end its arrests of nonviolent Tibetan protests, and its ongoing cultural, religious and economic repression in Tibet. Resolution 1077 calls on the Chinese government to begin dialogue with the Dalai Lama and find a long-term solution that will respect the human rights of Tibetans.China has voiced dissatisfaction over foreign discussions of the situation in Tibet during European Union foreign ministers’ discussion in Slovenia.”The Tibet issue is completely China’s internal affairs. No foreign countries or international organizations have the right to interfere in it,” said Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu, according to the official Xinhua news agency.The Dalai Lama has expressed that he does not seek the separation of Tibet from China, and instead hopes for “meaningful self-rule” while remaining a part of China. The holy man has insisted that he is willing to work with Chinese authorities to achieve peace and stability in the region.

http://www.fact-india.com





The Naxal menance: Threat to Unified India

24 03 2008

The Exhibition is a reflection of the Maoist insurgency in India, a blend of photographs statistics and ofcourse an analysis and a presentation of FACTS.

The The Naxal menance: Threat to Unified India will travel through the lives of the victims in the Naxal infested states and present their lives as well as the lives of those vallant fighters both civilian and from the government. Its the Fight against terrorism the idea of killing because one doesnt believe or just disagree with the others, Intolerence and disharmony. The exhibition shall be on the sidelines of the first “Conference on Peace and Reconciliation” in OSLO, Norway.

(April 10th and 11th Oslo, during the Conference on Peace and Reconciliation http://www.sap2008.org/

Ingeniørenes Hus Møtesenter, Kronprinsens gate 17, 0251 Oslo – Norway, http://www.ingeniorenes)

NEWS UPDATE ON AURANGZEB EXHIBITION

HAF Pressrelease

HAF Condemns Shutting Down of Aurangzeb Exhibit in Chennai

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Ishani Chowdhury
Hindu American Foundation
Director of Public Policy
Office: 301.770.7835
Fax: 301.770.7837

Washington, DC (March 18, 2008). On March 8, 2008, KN Murli, the Assistant Commissioner of Police in Chennai and several other Tamil Nadu state government officials attacked an art exhibition, shut it down and damaged several paintings. The exhibition, organized and sponsored by the Foundation Against Continuing Terror (FACT) and Francois Gautier, the eminent French journalist, featured miniatures and farmans (edicts) depicting the despotic and violent rule of the the 17th Century Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. Aurangzeb is particularly reviled as a predecessor of contemporary Islamist terrorists for his forced conversions, imposition of an intolerant Sharia and destruction of several famed Hindu temples. The Hindu American Foundation (HAF) condemned the actions of the Southern Indian state and demanded a restoration of the damaged paintings and a continuation of the exhibit.

Gautier, the convenor of FACT, and correspondent for Le Figaro, expressed shock that even after the exhibition has been displayed for over a year in several galleries throughout India, the Tamil Nadu state government reacted to a few isolated complaints so violently. Murali specifically sought out and threw to the ground two paintings that depicted the destruction by Aurangzeb of the Somnath Temple in Gujarat and the Kesava Rai Temple in North India. The exhibition of 40 paintings, included fine miniature paintings by Indian artists, and were on show at the Lalit Kala Akademi from March 3, 2008. The Lalit Kala Akademi, the premier government art organization where the exhibit had been hosted, has now cancelled the exhibition.

“This is a case of vindictive action against those who wish to throw light on India’s past, and a threat to free speech,” said Ramesh Rao, Senior Fellow, HAF. “The Tamil Nadu state government acted violently and illegally, but we are left to wonder why so few of the secular votaries of free speech in India remain silent in the face of this outrage–we demand amends from the state government and resumption of the exhibition.”

The Hindu American Foundation is a 501(c)(3), non-profit, non-partisan organization promoting the Hindu and American ideals of understanding, tolerance and pluralism. Contact HAF at 1-301-770-7835 or on the web at www.HAFsite.org.


HAF condemns shutting down of Aurangzeb exhibit
Monday, 03.24.2008, 04:35am (GMT-7)

WASHINGTON: On March 8, KN Murli, the Assistant Commissioner of Police in Chennai and several other Tamil Nadu state government officials attacked an art exhibition, shut it down and damaged several paintings.

The exhibition, organized and sponsored by the Foundation Against Continuing Terror (FACT) and Francois Gautier, the eminent French journalist, featured miniatures and farmans (edicts) depicting the despotic and violent rule of the the 17th Century Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. Aurangzeb is particularly reviled as a predecessor of contemporary Islamist terrorists for his forced conversions, imposition of an intolerant Sharia and destruction of several famed Hindu temples.

The Hindu American Foundation (HAF) condemned the actions of the Southern Indian state and demanded a restoration of the damaged paintings and a continuation of the exhibit. Gautier, the convener of FACT, and correspondent for Le Figaro, expressed shock that even after the exhibition has been displayed for over a year in several galleries throughout India, the Tamil Nadu state government reacted to a few isolated complaints so violently. Murali specifically sought out and threw to the ground two paintings that depicted the destruction by Aurangzeb of the Somnath Temple in Gujarat and the Kesava Rai Temple in North India.

The exhibition of 40 paintings, included fine miniature paintings by Indian artists were on show at the Lalit Kala Akademi from March 3. The Lalit Kala Akademi, the premier government art organization where the exhibit had been hosted, has now cancelled the exhibition. “This is a case of vindictive action against those who wish to throw light on India’s past, and a threat to free speech,” said Ramesh Rao, Senior Fellow, HAF.

“The Tamil Nadu state government acted violently and illegally, but we are left to wonder why so few of the secular votaries of free speech in India remain silent in the face of this outrage–we demand amends from the state government and resumption of the exhibition.”

Source: India post





The Naxal menance: Threat to Unified India

24 03 2008

The Exhibition is a reflection of the Maoist insurgency in India, a blend of photographs statistics and ofcourse an analysis and a presentation of FACTS.

The The Naxal menance: Threat to Unified India will travel through the lives of the victims in the Naxal infested states and present their lives as well as the lives of those vallant fighters both civilian and from the government. Its the Fight against terrorism the idea of killing because one doesnt believe or just disagree with the others, Intolerence and disharmony. The exhibition shall be on the sidelines of the first “Conference on Peace and Reconciliation” in OSLO, Norway.

(April 10th and 11th Oslo, during the Conference on Peace and Reconciliation http://www.sap2008.org/

Ingeniørenes Hus Møtesenter, Kronprinsens gate 17, 0251 Oslo – Norway, http://www.ingeniorenes)

NEWS UPDATE ON AURANGZEB EXHIBITION

HAF Pressrelease

HAF Condemns Shutting Down of Aurangzeb Exhibit in Chennai

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Ishani Chowdhury
Hindu American Foundation
Director of Public Policy
Office: 301.770.7835
Fax: 301.770.7837

Washington, DC (March 18, 2008). On March 8, 2008, KN Murli, the Assistant Commissioner of Police in Chennai and several other Tamil Nadu state government officials attacked an art exhibition, shut it down and damaged several paintings. The exhibition, organized and sponsored by the Foundation Against Continuing Terror (FACT) and Francois Gautier, the eminent French journalist, featured miniatures and farmans (edicts) depicting the despotic and violent rule of the the 17th Century Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. Aurangzeb is particularly reviled as a predecessor of contemporary Islamist terrorists for his forced conversions, imposition of an intolerant Sharia and destruction of several famed Hindu temples. The Hindu American Foundation (HAF) condemned the actions of the Southern Indian state and demanded a restoration of the damaged paintings and a continuation of the exhibit.

Gautier, the convenor of FACT, and correspondent for Le Figaro, expressed shock that even after the exhibition has been displayed for over a year in several galleries throughout India, the Tamil Nadu state government reacted to a few isolated complaints so violently. Murali specifically sought out and threw to the ground two paintings that depicted the destruction by Aurangzeb of the Somnath Temple in Gujarat and the Kesava Rai Temple in North India. The exhibition of 40 paintings, included fine miniature paintings by Indian artists, and were on show at the Lalit Kala Akademi from March 3, 2008. The Lalit Kala Akademi, the premier government art organization where the exhibit had been hosted, has now cancelled the exhibition.

“This is a case of vindictive action against those who wish to throw light on India’s past, and a threat to free speech,” said Ramesh Rao, Senior Fellow, HAF. “The Tamil Nadu state government acted violently and illegally, but we are left to wonder why so few of the secular votaries of free speech in India remain silent in the face of this outrage–we demand amends from the state government and resumption of the exhibition.”

The Hindu American Foundation is a 501(c)(3), non-profit, non-partisan organization promoting the Hindu and American ideals of understanding, tolerance and pluralism. Contact HAF at 1-301-770-7835 or on the web at www.HAFsite.org.


HAF condemns shutting down of Aurangzeb exhibit
Monday, 03.24.2008, 04:35am (GMT-7)

WASHINGTON: On March 8, KN Murli, the Assistant Commissioner of Police in Chennai and several other Tamil Nadu state government officials attacked an art exhibition, shut it down and damaged several paintings.

The exhibition, organized and sponsored by the Foundation Against Continuing Terror (FACT) and Francois Gautier, the eminent French journalist, featured miniatures and farmans (edicts) depicting the despotic and violent rule of the the 17th Century Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. Aurangzeb is particularly reviled as a predecessor of contemporary Islamist terrorists for his forced conversions, imposition of an intolerant Sharia and destruction of several famed Hindu temples.

The Hindu American Foundation (HAF) condemned the actions of the Southern Indian state and demanded a restoration of the damaged paintings and a continuation of the exhibit. Gautier, the convener of FACT, and correspondent for Le Figaro, expressed shock that even after the exhibition has been displayed for over a year in several galleries throughout India, the Tamil Nadu state government reacted to a few isolated complaints so violently. Murali specifically sought out and threw to the ground two paintings that depicted the destruction by Aurangzeb of the Somnath Temple in Gujarat and the Kesava Rai Temple in North India.

The exhibition of 40 paintings, included fine miniature paintings by Indian artists were on show at the Lalit Kala Akademi from March 3. The Lalit Kala Akademi, the premier government art organization where the exhibit had been hosted, has now cancelled the exhibition. “This is a case of vindictive action against those who wish to throw light on India’s past, and a threat to free speech,” said Ramesh Rao, Senior Fellow, HAF.

“The Tamil Nadu state government acted violently and illegally, but we are left to wonder why so few of the secular votaries of free speech in India remain silent in the face of this outrage–we demand amends from the state government and resumption of the exhibition.”

Source: India post





The Naxalsim menace

19 02 2008

The RED Terror

A PROJECT ON NAXALITES

FACT India has commissioned a new exhibition on Maoist Terrorism, what the PM of India says as “the single largest threat to India” naxalism.

The Exhibition features the Maoist, leftwing Ultras the problem of what has come to be known as Naxalism a movement which started off as a small uprising of people in Naxalbari an unknown village in west bengal to a blodywar that lost its ideology.

The objective is to portray the sufferings and danger that the leftwing ultras, Naxalism is bringing to the people of India. The unity and sovereignty of India needs to be protected. The fact that gun can never be the only solution needs to be highlighted. Socio-economic development can be an effective solution along with a strategy for maintaining Law and Order. The efforts of Non Governmental organisations in disarming people with dangerous violent ideologies is an important factor. The ancient techniques such as pranayama can also help to bring this people around, as a few spiritual organizations have already proved… for example the Art of Living Foundation. There is a subtle manner the Naxalites operate in extremely poor areas exploiting the poverty, ignorance and lack of governmental presence.

The exhibition will :

1) demonstrate graphically and with statistics the widespread presence of Naxalites in India (along with a brief on how they may link to Maoists in Nepal) and

2) What we can do/what has already been done to bring them around.

We plan to do this project in three stages:

1) A travelling exhibition with about 40 panels with captions and text blended with photographs realtime and the statistical analysis.

  1. A film, which will be shown during the exhibition and can be made into a documentary for television channels

  2. If both these are successful, we can envision doing a book on Naxalites with text and photos, whose angle will be historical and academic and that will aim at becoming the reference book for journalists/academics on Naxalism. Book will have to be funded by a publisher.

Format of the exhibition

1) Statistics

2) photos showing havoc created by Naxalites (recent, attack on innocent civilians like the one on marraige party CPRF camp in UP, escape from jail etc)

3) portraits of famous/notorious naxalites/most wanted

4) A history of Naxalism

5) film/archives footage on naxalites and on regions where they operate (AP, UP, Bihar etc)

6) A detailed brief on firearms/explosives they employ and how they procure them

7) The red corridor (dandakaranya), from Nepal to Tamil Nadu.

How you could also help behind the scenes:

  1. Volunteer for the cause

  2. Help us to generate high publicity inaugurations

  3. Help us Spread the word

  4. Contribute to the cause in cash / kind

The estimated budget of the project. Rs 700,000/-

Here we have been working on a series of issues on Naxalism and the havoc it has created over the years on the Indian populace.

Naxalism: A threat to the Unified Nation of India

“Its (Maoism’s) purpose is to destroy an existing society and its institutions and to replace them with a completely new structure.”

– Mao Tse-Tung

Maoism a.k.a Naxalism

Naxalism is flourishing in a vacuum created by the total inadequacy of administrative, political and social institutions in certain areas. Issues related to land-reforms, education, health, hygiene, etc have remained un-addressed since hundreds of years.

Well-educated Naxalite leaders have taken advantage of the grave dissatisfaction among the poor and uneducated population by offering them an alternative way to growth and development.

The Genesis

The Naxal Movement began as a violent peasant uprising against the landlords at Naxalbari village, West Bengal on 25th May, 1967.

It began under the leadership of revolutionary communists Charu Mazumdar and Kanu Sanyal. On 22nd April, 1969, they formed the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist).

Above: 9th Unity Congress, January, 2007.

The Present Day

Today, there are many Maoist parties and organizations that either predate the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) or emerged from factions when the CPI-ML split after the death of Charu Mazumdar.

Communist Party of India (Maoist) is the largest Maoist rebel group with operations in over 9 states and strong relations with Nepal’s Maoists.

Article 19 of its Party Constitution clearly states: “Every member must be ready to participate and play a vanguard role in class struggle in the form of armed agrarian revolutionary war.”

The Naxal Havoc

Chhattisgarh

15th March, 2007

Maoist rebels massacred 16 officers of the Chhattisgarh Armed Force (CAF), 39 Special Police Officers (SPO’s) and injured 12 others at the Rani Bodli village.

Around 500 rebels attacked the camp, throwing grenades and petrol bombs and shooting people fleeing the burning buildings before escaping with weapons and explosives.

16th December, 2007

In a daring jailbreak, 299 prisoners including 110 naxalites escaped from the Dantewada Jail in Chhattisgarh. The naxals also snatched 6 rifles and a wireless set from the guards before they fled.

Jharkhand

27th October, 2007

Armed naxals massacred 17 people including a former Jharkhand chief minister’s son in the Chilkhari village of the state’s Giridih district.

Bihar

13th November, 2005

200 naxalites attacked the Jehanabad Jail, freed their comrades and assassinated leaders of the Ranvir Sena, the upper-caste militia. More than 300 prisoners made use of the opportunity to escape as the jail was under Maoist’s control for almost two hours.

Orissa

8th February, 2008

300 rebels, including 100 women, gunned down 6 policemen at a police reserve which houses an armoury, 4 others at a training school and 2 at Nayagarh police station in the heart of the town.

The naxals also took away over 1,200 state-of-the art firearms including 298 number of 303 rifles, 130 SLR rifles, 30 AK-47 rifles, 300 Insas rifles, 80 9-mm pistols, 203 escart rifles, and 1 lakh live bullets.

The rebels were within striking distance of the state capital, Bhubaneshwar, which is barely 100 km away.

The Naxal Havoc

Maharashtra

A 40 Sq. km area on the Maharashtra-Chhattisgarh border is considered a `Liberated Zone’ where even the police do not venture. There are around 25 villages in this zone. Naxalites hold military training camps here and even run an arms factory and a printing press.

16 of India’s 33 states have Maoists operating in them. This now affects 192 of India’s 602 districts.

The year gone by…

In 2007, till the end of November…

There were 1385 incidents of naxalite violence.

214 police personnel have been killed.

418 civilians have been killed.

Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand together accounted for 68.16% of the total incidents and 76.42% of the total casualties.

The year saw an increased use of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and Landmines by naxalites.

Naxal attacks on police and police establishments, killings of innocents and attacks on infrastructure (like rail and road transport and power transmission) continued to be reported.

The Declaration

1. Coordinate the people’s war with the ongoing armed struggles of the various oppressed nationalities in Kashmir, Assam, Nagaland, Manipur and other parts of the Northeast.

2. Build a broad UF (United Front) of all secular forces and persecuted religious minorities such as Muslims, Christians and Sikhs.

3. Build a secret party apparatus which is impregnable to the enemy’s attacks.

4. Build open and secret mass organisations amongst the workers, peasants, youth, students, women and other sections of the people.

5. Build the people’s militia in all the villages in the guerrilla zones as the base force of the PGA (People’s Guerrilla Army). Also build armed self-defence units in other areas of class struggle as well as in the urban areas.

The Future

“Taking the trends of the last five years, we can build a model of the security scenario for the year 2010. Over 260 districts, nearly half of India, would be Naxal affected where the government’s writ hardly runs.”

– Ajit Doval, Former Director, Intelligence Bureau

“The next ten to twenty years will witness massive political and social upheavals… Militant confrontation between the people and the state will become a general feature throughout the country”

– Muppala Lakshmana Rao, General Secretary, CPI (Maoist)

Links & Support

“Available reports suggest the continued fraternal and logistic (non-strategic) links between Communist Party of Nepal (Maoists) and Indian Naxal groups.”

– Sriprakash Jaiswal, Minister of State for Home Affairs

“(We will) turn the Countries of South Asia into a Strong Bastion of World Revolution!”
– Coordination Committee of Maoist Parties and Organizations of South Asia (CCOMPOSA), a coalition of 13 extreme-left parties of South-Asia

“Times have changed, and the CPI-ML (Liberation) has fielded as many as nine candidates in north Bengal this year.”—– Abhijit Mazumdar, son of CPI-ML co-founder Charu Mazumdar

Information sources:
www.naxalwatch.blogspot.com
www.satp.org
www.naxalrage.org
www.globalsecurity.org
www.india-defence.com
www.fas.org/
www.achrweb.org
www.mha.nic.in

FACT India field study
News papers

FACT India is a Registered Trust. Contributions are welcome and are exempt under Section 80 G of the IT Act. Please make cheques in favour of “FACT”.

FACT India
41, Jor Bagh, New Delhi 110 003, India.
Web.: www.fact-india.com