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Modi Govt is Acting Like a Bull in China Shop

Courtesy: Rediff, April 22, 2016

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Ten years back, the in-house journal of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had carried an article – penned by none other than the incumbent foreign secretary S. Jaishankar who was heading the America Division at that time – passionately arguing that India and America should jointly work to promote democracy in China.

India Closely Following Pakistan’s Footsteps : Pervez Hoodbhoy

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Newsclick & The Citizen Joint Production, January 23, 2016

Pervez Hoodbhoy on Indo Pak

Newsclick in collaboration with The Citizen interviewed Pervez Hoodbhoy, a nuclear physicist from Pakistan on the issues of radicalization of science and Indo-Pak relation.   Dr. Hoodbhoy talked about how the current situation in India can be compared to that of Pakistan of 1980s where state was promoting islamisation of science.  He took the example of 103rd Indian Science Congress where Lord Shiva had been declared as greatest environmentalist and Prime Minister Modi’s reference of plastic surgery in the past. Dr.

RSS is against Science and Reason

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Newsclick, CC & Hillele Production, January 9, 2016

Irfan Habib on RSS and Science and Indian Science Congress

Excerpt of the interview with Irfan Habib being published on the backdrop of the recently concluded Indian Science Congress

Paris COP21: Solving a Real and Present Crisis with False and Unjust Solutions

Dorothy Grace Guerrero, December 08, 2015

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Many have already called the ongoing 21st Conference of Parties or COP21 climate negotiations in Paris, which started in November 30 and is expected to close in December 11 as another grand exercise of discussions and promotion of false solutions to the biggest global crisis that is awaiting us all and thus predicting its failure. Attended by 195 country delegations and over 150 world leaders, it is so far the largest diplomatic conference on climate change. Global climate activists also came out to the streets ahead of the talks in record-breaking number in November 28 and 29. More than 600,000 marched in 175 countries around the world, including Paris where marches were banned due to grave security concerns following terrorist attacks in the French capital weeks before COP21, to call for a strong deal. This is bigger than the New York People’s Climate March in 2014, which was also organized to put pressure on leaders attending the COP20 in Peru.

Need Delivery in Climate Talks, not Mere Announcements - D. Raghunandan

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Newsclick Production, December 07, 2015

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Newsclick interviewed D. Raghunandan, member of Delhi Science Forum, on the Paris Conference on climate change. Raghunandan said, the reality is that there is no major change happened on the ground though there is some progress in the meetings. The United States, having been escapist in its commitments till now, has shown some positive response. This is one of the major development in Paris.

BRICS Bank a Direct Challenge to IMF: Vijay Prashad

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TRNN Newsclick , July 17, 2015

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Newsclick in collaboration with the Real News Network discusses with Vijay Prashad, writer and a political commentator on economic affairs, on the Declaration of the 7th Summit of the BRICS countries held in Ufa, Russia.  On the question of BRICS bank and economic thrust, Vijay feels that it raises an institutional challenge for old colonial power like USA and UK.

Nepal Earthquake: How Prepared is the Region for Such Disasters?

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Newsclick Production, May 9, 2015

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The Nepal earthquake has officially killed more than 7,000, injured many more and devastated parts of Nepal. How ready are we in South Asia for facing such disasters? Newsclick speaks with D. Raghunandan, President of All India Peoples science Network on this issue. The discussion also covered the role of Indian teams, the criticism of its media and and the longer term issue of rehabilitation. Raghu also spoke of the weakness of the Nepalese government, particularly of its Army, to co-ordinate the relief efforts.

Rafale Deal: Meeting Defence Needs or PR for Modi?

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Newsclick Production, April 22, 2015

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The Modi government has recently made a quick Government to Government (G2G) deal with France for acquiring off the shelf 36 Rafale fighter aircrafts. The prices --it appears -- are yet to be negotiated. Newsclick interviewed D. Raghunandan, President, All India People's Science Network and a defence analyst to discuss the deal. According to Raghunandan, the deal being a G2G instead of public bidding as originally envisaged, is back to arbitrary decision making on defence deals. Reverting back to such a policy does not have any transparency and opens up a huge scope for corruption in defence deals.

Specific to the deal, Raghunandan stated that it contradicts Modi’s much hyped policy of “Make in India”. Originally, the deal was to have 126 aircrafts, out of which 108 would have been made in India by HAL. Dassault, the makers of Rafale, did not agree to technology transfer and have now have been rewarded with outright purchase of 36 aircrafts. Instead of the original tender which involved 126 aircrafts, 36 Rafales bought in this way, neither meets the airforce's needs of replacing almost 200 MIGs nor the long-term objective of India developing a self-reliant defence industry. All it has done is help Modi make a big PR splash in Paris, at a great cost to India's defence and procurement policy.

TRAI: Helping Telecom Companies Make Even More Money

Prabir Purkayastha, April 12, 2015

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The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has come out with a consultation paper dated March 27, 2015. Titled Regulatory Framework for Over the Top (OTT) Services. Even a quick look at this document makes clear that this is regulatory overreach on a grand scale. TRAI is essentially claiming that every activity carried out on the internet is an Over-TheTop service and TRAI can ask for it to be licensed as a telecom service.

India Votes Against Providing Benefits to Homosexual Employees of the UN

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Newsclick Production, April 3, 2015

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The UN , under the guidance of Secretary General Ban Ki Moon had decided last July to extend employee benefits to partners of homosexual employees of the UN organisation (to put them on par with partners of heterosexual employees). Russia, a country which is notorious for its persecution of the homosexual community within its territory, moved a resolution against this decision. India together with 43 other countries supported this Russian resolution stating that no consultations had been conducted on the issue. While the Russian resolution was defeated with 80 countries voting against (and some such as Singapore, which have similar laws pertaining to homosexuality as India deciding to abstain), the Indian stance has kicked of controversy with many criticizing the retrograde step.

Newsclick interviewed Dr. Himadri Roy, Professor, Gender Studies, IGNOU to discuss India's decision to vote against extending employee benefits to homosexual employees of the UN and what this means for the LGBT community in India. Himadri talks about the discrimination that the LGBT community faces on a daily basis and whether and how this can be changed. Himadri further critically analyses our judiciary's attitude towards the issue as shown by its decisions concerning Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code as well as its acknowledgment of transgenders as a 'third gender'.

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