Thursday, February 28, 2008

No site inspection of US military equipment imported to India

United States and India are in talks to join forces on a missile defense system which may ignite arm race to Asian region especially with China.Few call it trapping China at time when China looks for space global order and is resolving border disputes with his neighbor countries and is at its economy boom at take off stage.

India has told the US that it is uncomfortable with the idea of on-site inspection of US military equipment imported for Indian armed forces.

Defence minister A.K. Antony is said to have told visiting US defence secretary Robert Gates that the two sides needed to work around laws that require such physical checks, a highly placed defence ministry source said here today.

Under US law, military equipment transferred to another country has to be verified periodically for assurance of legitimate use. In simple terms, the US would want to ensure that equipment it sells to India is not re-sold or moved to a country like Myanmar on which it has imposed sanctions. India has re-sold British-origin maritime aircraft to Myanmar in the past.

But these hitches would not be allowed to tell on military-to-military relations that both sides concluded were intensifying “satisfactorily”.

“We want to make it clear that there are no hard-line positions. Both sides are willing to meet more than half-way to resolve the issues,” the defence ministry official said.

US and Indian Defence Ministry officials said "increase in military cooperation and trade" was on the cards. With an eye on the ever increasing Indian weapons shopping list estimated to touch 5 to 8 Billion dollars a year shortly, Gates said US wanted to increase its weapons sales to India.

US and Indian Defence Ministry officials said "increase in military cooperation and trade" was on the cards. With an eye on the ever increasing Indian weapons shopping list estimated to touch 5 to 8 Billion dollars a year shortly, Gates said US wanted to increase its weapons sales to India. Major US armament makers Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and Boeing jointly lead the American missile programme and have made a number of presentations to India on their PAC-III anti missile system as well as warship borne Aegis system.Noting that India needed an anti-missile defence, the US today talked about the possibility of cooperation in developing such a shield.

"We understand India's needs for an anti-missile shield," visiting Defence Secretary Robert Gates told reporters here as he held talks with his counterpart A K Antony. Stressing that perhaps a joint analysis could be carried out, he said the two countries were just beginning to talk on what India needs would be in the realm of missile defence and "where cooperation between us might help advance that". Nudging India to conclude the civil nuclear deal at the earliest, the US today said "the clock is ticking" and there is an "open question" on whether the Congress will be able to take it up "beyond this summer and September".

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates also made it clear that his country was eyeing Indian defence contracts worth billions of dollars, saying Washington wanted to have a "place at the table" when New Delhi procures weapon systems.

"The clock is ticking in terms of how much time is available to get all the differnt aspects of an agreement implemented," he told reporters here just before winding up his two-day visit.

Gates did not specify any time period by which India needed to take the steps like firming up the IAEA safeguards and seeking waiver from Nuclear Suppliers Group.

He, however, made the deadline clear as he said: "with this being an election year, there is an open question about how long the Senate will be in session beyond this summer and September.

After the India-IAEA Safeguards Agreement and waiver from NSG, the nuclear agreement has to go back to the US Congress for another vote.

Without directly mentioning the stiff opposition by Left parties to operationalization of the nuclear deal, he said the US respects India's internal politics and hopes that the government would resolve the issue in time.

The US Defence Secretary also met senior BJP leader L K Advani, whose party is also opposing the deal, in an apparent bid to seek his support.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Modernisation effort : A Rail Budget 2008-09

Indian Rail Budget 2008-9
February 27th, 2008 - 10:53 am ICT by Nksagar - Email This Post Email This Post

Federal Rail Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav said while answering the question of common men at Rail Museum New Delhi with various channel that he is for modernization of Indian Rail with security and cleanliness along with international standards.To question by Nksagar in NDTV programme the absence of trolley as in airports at New Delhi Railways station and other station he was quick to response that this basic facilities shall be provided.
(live-PR.com) - Salient features of Indian Rail budget at Glance 2008-90

Railways planning smart card-based ticketing system.
CCTvs at all important stations
Modular toilets to be introduced in trains.
‘Go Mumbai’ card to be sold at bus depots.
Freight loading estimated to increase from 650 mt to 1100 mt by 2011
New policy for wagon leasing.
New line for Ennore Power Station.
By 2010, all coaches will be made of steel.
Professional agencies being involved on a pilot basis to ensure
cleanliness in running trains.
Work on automatic signalling to start in new sections.
Railways to bring in led displays in stations on train arrivals/
departures.
Stainless steel coaches for mail and express trains.
Cleanliness drive on rajdhani and shatabdi trains.
Railways show a surplus of Rs 68,778 cr in last four years.
Railways to provide escalators at 50 per cent of the stations in the
country.
Railway Minister Lalu Yadav announced that Indian Railways will
introduce 15,000 ticketing counters in the next 2 years. The Railways
plans to offer tickets through mobile phones.
By 2009 call centre based inquiry services to be unveiled.
Issuance of wait-listed e-tickets will also allowed
Operating ratio of the Railways was at 76%.
Rs 49,250 crore invested into new railway projects.
Railway plan size increased from Rs 11,000 crore to Rs 30,000 crore in
the last four years.
Productivity of Railway assets has been constantly increasing.
Railways attained 790 tonne payload target in the year 2007-08.
E-ticket booking is likely to rise to 300,000 from 100,000 in a year.
Freight traffic target of 785 million tonnes crossed to touch 790
million tones
Railway plan size increased from Rs 11,000 crore to Rs 30,000 crore in
the last four years.
560 railway station platforms to be lengthened to take long trains.
Middle-level and low-level platforms to be upgraded to high-level
platforms in several stations to help commuters.
More facilities for women and old passengers.
Railway profit in 2007-08 at Rs 25,000 crore.
Doubling of lines to be given priority.

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Sunday, February 24, 2008

OZ defeats India in 10th ODI CB Sydney

OZ defeats India in 10th ODI CB Sydney
Australia wins 10 ODI against India with 18 runs.

24.02.2008 19:07:45 .India lacked the experience and fell short of eighteen runs.Top order flopped and the middle order took the fight to the last made the 10th ODI match high scoring one for the two teams to show their gamesmanship at their best.India batsmen looked struggling but the host proved to be better demonstrator of their batting,fielding and bowling

(live-PR.com) - Australia restricted India to 299 runs with their all round performance on the field.India lacked the experience and fell short of eighteen runs.Top order flopped and the middle order took the fight to the last made the 10th ODI match high scoring one for the two teams to show their gamesmanship at their best.


India batsmen looked struggling but the host proved to be better demonstrator of their batting,fielding and bowling.

Bret Lee took five wickets was the chief wrecker. India has score 299 runs for the loss of ten wickets in last over of the match. Australia has won the match with 18 runs.

India 290 for nine in 47.5 overs. Sreeshant and Ishant last wicket at crease. Robin Uthappa 51 runs in 46 balls is caught by Hussey bowled by Lee.India 290 runs for loss of eight wickets.Harbhajan 20 runs in 10 balls caught by Gilchrist bowled Lee. Uthappa 51 runs in 44 balls and Harbhajan 15 runs in 8 balls India is 284 for seven wickets a short of 34 runs to win in 18 balls. India 257 for seven in 44.5 overs.

Pathan’s 22 runs in 21 balls valiant inning came to an end caught by Bracken bowled by Hopes.India is 237 for loss six wicket in 42 overs is struggling hard with Robin Uthappa 32 and Irfan 16 are inching towards chase of 318 runs.


Gambhir made an impressive 113 runs in 119 balls played an impressive inning was out stumped by Adam Gilchrist fifth victim in this game at India’s score of 219 runs in 39.1 over. Dhoni 36 runs in 66 balls at india’s total of 149 runs caught Gilchrist bowled by Lee fourth victim of Adam wicket keeper.Uthappa 51 runs in 44 balls and Harbhajan 15 runs in 8 balls India is 284 for seven wickets a short of 34 runs to win in 18 balls.

India are 257 for seven in 44.5 overs.Pathan’s 22 runs in 21 balls valiant inning came to an end caught by Bracken bowled by Hopes.India is 237 for loss six wicket in 42 overs is struggling hard with Robin Uthappa 32 and Irfan 16 are inching towards chase of 318 runs. Gambhir made an impressive 113 runs in 119 balls played an impressive inning was out stumped by Adam Gilchrist fifth victim in this game at India’s score of 219 runs in 39.1 over. Dhoni 36 runs in 66 balls at india’s total of 149 runs caught Gilchrist bowled by Lee fourth victim of Adam wicket keeper. Yuvraj hit a four and third batsman caught by Gilchrist by Clark on Team India score of 51 runs in 10.2 overs.Rohit Sharma scored 1 run fell another victim to Gilchrist bowled by Bracken at the score of 46 runsin 9.1 overs.

Virender Sehwag Caught by Gilchrist on the bowling of Clark is blow to Team India at the score of 45 runs in 8.4 overs. India at score of three runs,Sachin is the on way to pavilion on his indiviual score of 2 runs in 3 balls bowled by Lee.Gambhir 16 run in 23 balls and Virender 17 runs in 16 balls are on crease scored 37 runs in 7 overs.Australia are 317 for seven wickets in stipulated fifty over.Brett Lee went for run and was run out by Harbhajan in last ball of the match.Hopes 4 run out by Harbhajan Singh.Ricky Ponting 124 runs long inning has been completed as he walked out caught Irfan Pathan bowled Sreesanth at total score of 304 runs.In forty eighth overs Team Australia on score of 296 runs, Ishant Sharma bowled Andrew Symonds 59 runs in 49 balls left the ground with comments.

Australia has scored 250 runs in 42.4 overs as Ricky Ponting making his century after continuous lean patch in this series.Andrew Symonds with 35 runs in 37 balls. Australia scored 209 for 3 in 35 overs with splendid batting by top order batsmen.Ponting reaching his eighty nine runs in ninety balls in hurricane fashion laid solid foundation for his team.Australia Skipper Ponting won the toss,elected to bat.

The opener Gilchrist and Hayden open the innings with aggressive onslaught batting scoring 21 runs in 15 balls.Sreesanth took a wicket of Gilchrist 16 runs in 7 balls caught by wicket keeper Dhoni a blow in his second over at total score of 21 runs.Team Australia run rage continues as Skipper Ponting comes as one down batsman.In five overs the host Top players Hayden 15 in 16 balls and Ponting on 12in 7 balls are 44 for one in five overs.Australia scoring 92 runs in 10 over compelled Skipper Dhoni to put Harbhajan in action.Australia has cored 100 runs in 12 overs. Hayden scored 39 runs in 34 balls and Ricky Ponting 37 runs in 31 balls.

Hayden took a race to run in which ponting was not interested could not get back to his crease as Virender stuck the ball from R Sharma to wicket and sent Hayden back to pavilion on his score of 54 runs in 62 balls.Host are 131 for two wickets in 20.3 overs.Partnership of Ponting and Hayden accrued 110 runs as both completing their half century with rapid run rate.

Team Australia lost another wicket of MJ Clarke 31 runs in 38 balls at their score of 194 runs in 31.5 overs by Virender Sehwag caught Rohit Sharma.

India chose to strengthen their batting and drafted in opener Virender Sehwag in place of all-rounder Praveen Kumar.

The other change for the visitors was inclusion of pacer S Sreesanth in place of Munaf Patel.
Australia too has made a change with speedster Brett Lee coming in place of Mitchell Johnson.

Umpires: D J Harper, A L Hill

Australia: Gilchrist, Hayden, Ponting, Clarke, M Hussey, Hopes, Symonds, Hogg, Lee, Bracken, Clark.

India: Sehwag, Tendulkar, Gambhir, Uthappa, Yuvraj, R Sharma, Dhoni, Pathan, Harbhajan, Sharma, Sreesanth


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Author:
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Friday, February 15, 2008

US in fix on Pak polls: Musharraf pledged free and fair.

Musharraf, a top US confident "war on terror" ally, vowed to crush any opposition protests against result of the poll he pledged would be free and fair.

Musharraf popularity has eroded as per Poll conducted by BBC and further adds Pakistan citizen feels Pakistan security and stability to be better if president resigns.

In case of any post-election violence, a confrontation between President Pervez Musharraf or the powerful military and moderate democratic forces could force Washington to make a difficult choice on who to back.

"Just about every political player in the Pakistani elections has already declared in words or deeds that 'good elections' are not going to happen," said the Center for American Progress, a Washington-based think tank.

"The United States must be prepared for deeply flawed results and the risk of ensuing violence," it said in a commentary Thursday.

US-based human rights group, Qayyum appeared to be advising an unidentified person on what political party the person should approach to become a candidate in the February 18 general election.

The Human Rights Watch claimed the recording was made during a phone interview with a media person on November 21 last year. Qayyum, while still on the phone interview, took a call on another telephone and his side of that conversation was recorded.

Qayyum, a retired judge who is a close aide of President Pervez Musharraf, is heard telling the unidentified person in Urdu and Punjabi to "leave" former premier Nawaz Sharif and seek a ticket from the party that "will massively rig to get their own people to win".

The recording was made the day after the Election Commission announced the schedule for polls. The polls were originally set for January 8 but were postponed after former premier Benazir Bhutto was assassinated.

"They will massively rig to get their own people to win. If you can get a ticket from these guys, take it," Qayyum purportedly said. It was not known which party he was referring to.

Australia beat Sri Lanka sixth ODI in Perth

With second win against Team Sri Lanka in the sixth ODI match CB series in Perth by sixty three runs moved host to the top position securing twelve points from four games.

Adam Gilchrist with his superb 118, while Michael Clarke scored 43 for the Aussies after captain Ricky Ponting elected to bat.

Gilchrist, who flourished at one end, stayed on to establish a 105-run partnership with Clarke and bail out Australia.

But Sri Lankan bowlers continued to attack the hosts taking prize wickets of Clarke and all-rounder Andrew Symonds (4) in successive overs.

With Gilchrist"s departure, Team Australia lost remaining half of its batting line-up in seven overs as their innings folded with two balls to spare to total score of 237 runs.

Tigers were to a target of 237, Team Sri Lanka fell short of 63 runs, only Kumar Sangakkara offering some resistance and the wickets fell at regular interval in 45.3 overs to score 170 runs.Islander started well but once Jayasuriya was out, the Lankan innings lacked luster and collapsed with their insipid batting.

Adam Gilchrist received the Man of the Match award.This was his last international match on Perth his home.

Gilchrist said he was concerned about the Sunday match against India in Adelaide."Today was a perfect day but it counts for little as we have a tough game against India coming up," he said."I am obviously very pleased to get a hundred today in my final game at the WACA but I am equally focused on the match against India in Adelaide. They have been playing some fantastic cricket and we are obviously looking forward to wrestle back the momentum from them.

Teams:

Australia: Ricky Ponting (capt), Adam Gilchrist, Matthew Hayden, Michael Clarke, Mike Hussey, James Hopes, Andrew Symonds, Brad Hogg, Brett Lee, Mitchelle Johnson, Nathan Bracken.

Sri Lanka: Mahela Jayawardene (capt), Tillakratne Dilshan, Sanath Jayasuriya, Kumar Sangakkara, Farveez Maharoof, Chamara Silva, Chamara Kapugedera, Chaminda Vaas, Lasith Malinga, Nuwan Kulasekara, Mutthiah Muralitharan.

MIC leader Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu heckled abused

PETALING JAYA: MIC leader Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu and Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohamad Khir Toyo were involved in an angry exchange with a group of abusive hecklers yesterday.

Samy Vellu was speaking before the ground-breaking ceremony for SJK (T) Seaport, Petaling, when they started hurling abuses at him.
The MIC leader smiled and waved at them.
When Dr Khir took to the stage, he told off the hecklers.
This angered the hecklers who became more aggressive, with some attempting to move towards the VIP stage.
The hecklers were unhappy over the size of land allocated for the school. They claimed that the government had promised 3ha but only set aside 0.6ha. Dr Khir tried to explain that the size had actually been increased from 0.4ha.
Dr Khir Toyo also presented a cheque for RM2 million to Samy Vellu to build 22 Tamil schools in the state.
The Education Ministry has topped this up with another RM2 million.
Angry youths surround and jeer Samy at school event

PETALING JAYA: MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu was surrounded by some youths who jeered him during the ground-breaking ceremony for a new Tamil school here.

Samy Vellu was walking back to a canopy after performing the ceremony for the SRJK Tamil Seaport in Kampung Lindungan when the youths surrounded him.

The school is being relocated from Kelana Jaya.

MIC supporters quickly came in to help but Samy Vellu and the youths were already involved in a heated argument by then.

Police were called in and they escorted Samy Vellu from the area.

Selangor Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohamad Khir Toyo was also at the ceremony.

Earlier, as Samy Vellu got down from his car, a group of about 30 people held placards stating that the land area for the school had been reduced.

After listening to their grievances, Samy Vellu assured them that the new school building would be bigger.

He said the new building could hold 450 pupils compared to the 150 now.

“We should be happy that an extra RM500,000 has been allocated to build this school at a cost of RM1.5mil,” he said.
MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu hopes to have a double celebration on polling day.

On March 8, he hopes to celebrate his 72nd birthday and the victory of his party for retaining all its nine parliamentary and 19 state seats.

This is the first time that Samy Vellu who has been contesting in Sungai Siput since 1974, would go to the polls on his birthday.

Samy Vellu, who is also the Works Minister, said the party would have a refreshing look with the fielding of new candidates to inject dynamism and provide a new vision in MIC.

He said in the last six months, the party had negotiated with the government to look into uplifting the economic status of the Indian community.

"We are glad that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak have given their commitment," he said.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

RajThackery:Bengali,Madrasi,Gujarati,Madrasi,Marathi, Punjabi:

Bengali, Madrasi, Guarati,Marathi and Punjabi,Bhaiji gives cracking jovial atmosphere to young mind as out of curiosity to know more.

14.02.2008 06:55:28 Students in their college mostly addressed their colleagues with such grand calls Bengali, Madrasi, Guarati,Marathi and Punjabi,Bhaiji gives cracking jovial atmosphere but all students get to bigger family when they interact with each other and listen to their culture with rapt attention and feel part of total Indian family which brings closer to our nationalist approach.In case if we minus great men from any one states the Country will be lusterless short of great ideas.
live-PR.com) - Raj Thackery:Bengali,Madrasi,Gujarati,Madrasi,Marathi, Punjabi:

Raj remind us the national politics reach the basic elementary level talks which he needed to polish his thoughts with problems facing the nation in all metros but with his misadventure he has created a stir and the others groups soon to form a coalition and he shall be left isolated in the national political thought process.

All India Minorities Front (AIMF) today threatened to launch a nation-wide agitation against Raj Thackeray, the leader of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), if he did not mend his ways and avoided targeting north Indians and non-Maharashtrians.

AIMF President S. M. Asif said the target of his agitation would be Maharashtra’s living states other than Maharashtra.Top New reports.

Provocative utterances in secular and democratic state is tolerated with precision in diction but when the diction becomes an authority above law the radical state and fundamentalism emerge,the thin lining is difficult to draw. Development of each States must be done in such methodical way that the few metros do not get loaded with inflow of population is rational statement but when the native or Leader does not allow other state person free entry and see as foreigner in Federal structure of the country the intelligence of lower and higher reach mawkish debate.Each state with their intrinsic character with education levels and economic development has the role to assist other states for the overall growth of the country.

Laconic speech is need of the hours from our Leaders but in the era of coalition and alliance which has love and hate relationship in politics,the lascivious sometime take over as the Parties try to gain in shortest route to achieve their object.Speech delivered by Raj states that, Me Maharashtra’s Leader and not a National leader.When reach national level maturity emanates.

However Mumbai was by and large calm barring stray incidents of stone pelting in which some buses were targeted after the arrest just before the peak hour.

Abu Asim Azmi of the Samajwadi party, who also faced similar charges like Raj, was also arrested from his Colaba home but granted bail by a Magistrate”s Court in Bhoiwada after furnishing a bond of Rs 10,000.

‘”The Congress government has given a long rope to Raj Thackeray. Its strategy is to divide the society for political gains,’” BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar told reporters in New Delhi.

Each group making mountain out of molehill.

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Raj Thackeray : In Native Intelligence role

Raj Thackeray : In Native Intelligence role
Mumbai police moved in to arrest the leader of the Maharashtra Navnirman Samiti(MNS)Raj Thackery,the leader from his Shivaji park residence at 4.15 PM amid tight security when a magistrate in Vikhroli granted him bail on a personal surety of Rs 15,000. Raj(39), who appeared calm, was driven in a normal police vehicle.Police made arrangements to keep the state clam by 2,000 preventive arrests, mainly of MNS activists across the state with personnel from the Rapid Action Force(RAF) and central paramilitary forces keeping a tight vigil. The trouble igniting violence by his supporters today in Mumbai and other towns in Maharashtra in which One HAL employee died with stone injury on head during pelting of stone at the staff bus.

MNS chief Raj Thackery was slapped with an FIR by Mumbai police two days ago for promoting enmity among regional groups after his provocative statements against North Indians.

Provocative utterances in secular and democratic state is tolerated with precision in diction but when the diction becomes an authority above law the radical state and fundamentalism emerge,the thin lining is difficult to draw. Development of each States must be done in such methodical way that the few metros donot get loaded with inflow of population is rational statement but when the native or Leader does not allow other state person free entry and see as foreigner in Federal structure of the country the intelligence of lower and higher reach mawkish debate.Each state with their intrinsic character with education levels and economic development has the role to assist other states for the country to overall growth of the country.Laconic speech is need of the hours from our Leaders but in the era of coalition and alliance which has love and hate relationship in politics,the lascivious sometime take over as the Parties try to gain in shortest route to achieve their object.Speech delivered by Raj states that Me Maharashtra”s Leader and not a National leader.
However Mumbai was by and large calm barring stray incidents of stone pelting in which some buses were targeted after the arrest just before the peak hour.

In Pune and Nashik, several buses were stoned by MNS activists.

Abu Asim Azmi of the Samajwadi party, who also faced similar charges like Raj, was also arrested from his Colaba home but granted bail by a Magistrate”s Court in Bhoiwada after furnishing a bond of Rs 10,000.

‘”The Congress government has given a long rope to Raj Thackeray. Its strategy is to divide the society for political gains,’” BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar told reporters in New Delhi.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Russian PM Victor A Zubkov arrives on Monday

ndia has six-decade-long defense cooperation with Russia.During the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Victor A Zubkov which focus on boosting the economic relations.

Zubkov will arrive here on Monday on a three-day official visit during which the two sides will explore ways of enhancing their ties in a wide range of areas nuclear energy, defense, mining, metals and other economical projects.
Russia await firming of India’s Safeguards Agreement with the IAEA and the waiver by Nuclear Suppliers Group. However the discussion between Dr Man Mohan Singh and his counter part Victoron this issue is on cards officials said.
Last year India and Russia signed a watershed agreement for the joint development and production of the futuristic fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGA).
New Delhi has negotiated with Moscow to lease a Russian nuclear-powered submarine and looks for another six submarine.

The agreement for construction of four additional nuclear reactors Kudankulam with Russian help could come up for discussion and its finalization.During Singh’s visit to Moscow in November but it was put off because of lack of agreement between India and IAEA. Kudankulum project is on hold, the two sides are working towards a possible collaboration on uranium mining in Jharkhand, including enrichment, amid Russia’s keen interest to enter the field in the region.

Jharkhand has expressed interest in seeking Russian help in areas like assessing the economic viability of mining in that state, for which report of geological survey is needed.
Other military cooperation projects included licensed production of T-90S tanks, Brahmos missiles, and frigates.
An Indo-Russian titanium project in Gopalpur in Orissa is also on the cards.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Hamas via Gaza's new-found access to Egypt

Hamas via Gaza's new-opened access at Gaza Egypt border makes way for Egyptian materials, goods and services, can now ease Gaza's depressed economic condition, and thereby diminish the differences between Gaza and the more prosperous West Bank. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians flooded the northeastern corner of the Sinai Peninsula after January 23, spending approximately $130 million in local Egyptian markets.

The opening of the state of Gaza to Egypt reinforces Hamas control that no external pressure will be able to reverse at this juncture. Abbas's prospects of regaining control in Gaza are remote, at best. Notwithstanding reports of an agreement with Egypt to include Abbas's Presidential Guard at Gaza's Rafah border crossing, Hamas will not give up its achievement and allow forces loyal to Abbas to control the border, despite Egypt's preference for such an arrangement.

Hamas has upgraded its strategic posture by opening its southern border and forcing its Egyptian neighbor to allow free and largely unimpeded access for nearly two weeks for hundreds of thousands of Gazans who crossed Egypt's sovereign borders and returned to Gaza at will. Hamas's success in forcing Egypt to negotiate over the crisis has upgraded its status.

Hamas has agreed to cooperate with Egypt to close the breached border. However, the gesture is temporary and must also be considered in the context of Hamas's stated intention to disengage completely from Israel, abandon the shekel and adopt an Arab currency and seek fuel, utilities, trade and a new open border regime with Egypt.

Hamas - the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood and the ideological precursor to al-Qaida - has gained full control over contiguous territory and population, and has now effectively become a state government without real opponents or internal challenges for power.

Gaza's new open border with Egypt represents the fulfillment of a long-held dream by the Muslim Brotherhood across the region, and suggests far-reaching ramifications for neighboring Arab countries including Jordan, Syria and Egypt. In fact, on January 27, a senior Muslim Brotherhood delegation from the Egyptian parliament paid an official visit to Hamas's government compound in Gaza.

A senior Hamas delegation headed by its political leader, Khaled Mashaal, has also been invited to Saudi Arabia to discuss "developments" since the border was opened.

In the Palestinian-Israeli context, Hamas's success enhances its political power among Palestinians and further weakens Abbas's image as the leader of the Palestinian people. While Abbas is eager to return Fatah control to Gaza, recent events have ratcheted up Hamas's control.

Hamas's border breach has also been a signal to Egypt of the Gaza government's strength.

The events in Gaza may signal an historic change: the end of Fatah as the ruling political power in Palestinian society. Fatah's continued control in Palestinian areas of the West Bank today is the direct result of the Israel Defense Forces' control of the territory. Only the continuing IDF operations in the West Bank have prevented Hamas from staging a takeover similar to its military coup against Fatah in Gaza in 2007.

Another strategic shift is reflected in Gaza's new status as an enemy state entity with open borders. Gaza has transformed from its prior status as part of the Palestinian Authority to its new role as a mini-state that is now an integral part of the Arab world. Hamas will now be able to more freely obtain weapons, ammunition, explosives and training via Egyptian Sinai. Since the border opening, advanced weapons have flowed unimpeded into Gaza across the Egyptian border, enabling the transfer of higher-grade weapons than can be smuggled via underground tunnels.

The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) has confirmed that Hamas smuggled large amounts of long-range rockets, anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles into Gaza since the border was breached.

This new weaponry will enable the continued upgrade of Hamas's highly disciplined army that is largely financed and trained by Iran and is modeled after the Iranian-backed Hizbullah in Lebanon.

Terrorist operatives and groups such as al-Qaida, that have already used Egyptian Sinai as a rear base, are now able to reach Gaza more easily. Several al-Qaida-affiliated operatives, some of which infiltrated from Egypt, Sudan, and Yemen, have been active in Gaza since 2006. Over time, al-Qaida-affiliated organizations have also emerged in Gaza, including Jaish al-Islam (Army of Islam) that was responsible for the kidnapping of BBC journalist Alan Johnston. Other groups were also formed like Jaish al-Umma (Army of the Nation), al-Qaida in Palestine, and Mujahidin Beit al-Makdes (Holy Warriors of Jerusalem), which attacked the American International School in Gaza last month.

Global jihadi leaders, such as Abu Abd al-Rahman al-Ansari of the Lebanese-based Fatah al-Islam, called for jihadi fighters around the world to exploit the breached Rafah crossing and enter Gaza.

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?apage=2&cid=1202211060714&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Aam Admi : FM gets feed back at Congress HQ

Finance Minister Mr Chidambaram spent about two-and-a-half hours on Wednesday day at the Congress’ 24 Akbar Road headquarters meeting a gathering of forty party leaders comprising working committee members, general secretaries, MPs, secretaries and other office bearers to reach to consensus to have Aam Adami budget.

Farmers interest,reduce prize of essential commodities,improvement in public distribution network, demands for enhancing the budgetary allocation for SC/STs and minority-focused programmes, a ‘youth oriented’ budget,calling for a scrapping of SEZs, better implementation NREGA, for expansion of the midday meal scheme and universalisation of the ICDS,cut in the service tax rate and for the income tax exemption limit to be raised to 1.5 lakh.

Congress party media chairperson Veerappa Moily, sum-up all these demands , emphasis on the rural and farm sector which has been been lagging in planning India’s Planning commission.

Congress leaders took the stand in this pre budget exercise with Finance Minister who is to present his last budget as the nation will go for General election next year, the Congress wanted from the budget an Aam Admi budget a discussion on which culminated into the desire of the Congress think tanks needed to do before the next general elections in 2009.

“The benefits of the GDP will not percolate down if price rise is not controlled,” said party leader M Veerappa Moily.

“Unless you can rein in the prices and come up with specific programmes meant for the poor there is little hope for us,” a Congress party MP told him.

“pro poor face”. “The minister must come up with measures to help save farmers from committing suicides,” said S Surjewalla head of the party’s Kisan cell.

“The well-off alone should not gain, the benefits of this growth must percolate to the deprived section as well,” said Rajesh Misra, congress MP from Varanasi.

Chidambaram the Union finance Minister after the demands and suggestions made by his party men, but without any statement reached final words “I have heard what they had to say. The response will come on February 29.”

Rahul Gandhi,” Youth dedicated 2008 budget”

Rahul Gandhi,Congress heir apparent,a MP and General Secretary of congress Party heading two wings India Youth congress and NSUI has requested finance minister P Chidambaram ‘dedicate’ the 2008 budget to the ‘youth of country’.Two prime Youth organisation IYC and NSUI are demanding better sports infrastructure before of the Commonwealth games, government incentives for mixed marriages, a simplified process for educational loans, more jobs for urban educated youth outside the scope of NREGA, more training facilities in the form of additional IITs other institutes, and plan outlay in spending on education in the budget on 29 Feb 2008,the last budget as the nation will go for General election next year.

Youth wants red tapism free educational loan as one Leader points out that “There are many complications for those taking student loans for going abroad. They have to sign a bond while going abroad for higher studies. We have asked for a simplification of this procedure,” more Navodaya schools for providing quality education in rural areas with special care for SC/ST.

Youth wants incentives to mixed marriages to mitigate gap within different section and sectarian or community and for more spending on education.

Italy snap polls April 2008

President Giorgio Napolitano,made an effort to form an interim government to bring electrol reforms and the Senate speaker Franco Marini to find cross-party support for an interim government to legislate a change in elections so they produce a more decisive outcome has failed to produce any results.

Failure to reach to any understand for the electrol reforms has paved the way president to order for the dissolution of parliament this week and a poll on the existing law on April 6 or 13.

Forza Italia Leader Silvio Berlusconi, who wants immediate elections the 71 year-old two time Prime Minister, media-magnate,businessman-turned-politician, who is pushing to lead a center-right coalition to a third election victory, rejected all talk of an interim government to approve a new electoral law."The only path is to return to the polls to give the country an immediately operative government," Berlusconi spoke to journalists after meeting Napolitano.

He has threated to call for street protests if elections are not called.

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