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Water Scarcity and the Threat of Water Wars in South Asia – A Bangladesh Perspective
June 6, 2009, 6:29 pm
Filed under: Bangladesh, India, Nepal, SubContinent

Water Scarcity and the Threat of Water Wars in South Asia – A Bangladesh Perspective

MBI Munshi

mbimunshi@gmail.com

 INTRODUCTION

South Asia is known for many wonderful and beautiful things such as its varied cultures, languages, religions, landscapes and peoples but above all it is known for its volatility and sudden outbreaks of violence and often brutal and destructive conflicts. The Indian subcontinent, as it was once known, was partitioned on the basis of religion in 1947 according to the concept of the two-nation theory. Since then several wars have been fought over territory, sovereignty and in one case for independence which eventually led to the emergence of Bangladesh in 1971 as an independent nation-state. As things now stand the next war in the South Asia region could well be over water. This appears almost inevitable unless India adopts a more accommodative attitude towards its neighbour’s claims for reasonable and equitable water sharing rights. Recent history has, however, suggested quite the opposite with New Delhi ignoring the just demands of Bangladesh which as the lower riparian nation is wholly dependant for its survival on the regular and sustained flow of water coming through India from the Himalayas.  

Since 1971 Bangladesh has generally adopted a defensive attitude in its relations with its large neighbour in recognition of the economic and military might of India. However, if New Delhi continues with its policy of draining the life blood of Bangladesh it is more than likely that this small but populous nation would be forced to take on a more assertive role in its relations with India and in realizing its just demands for water, as well as in addition to other contentious bilateral issues, could ultimately lead to conflict in the coming decade. Policy makers in Bangladesh are yet to wake up to this reality but as a new generation of leaders emerge faced with the calamitous consequences of the large scale withdrawal and diversion of water by India they may have few choices but to confront New Delhi in a more aggressive and confrontational manner. This may appear at first glance to be highly unlikely but with millions displaced by desertification and the numerous other adverse effects (some of which has wrongly been attributed to climate change to distract world attention to the actual causes of environmental damage in Bangladesh) of the Indian water withdrawal policy such a scenario cannot be easily dismissed. Fueling this growing animosity would be decades of mistrust caused by an arrogant and duplicitous policy devised and practiced by India’s politicians and diplomats in their dealings with Bangladesh.  

 BACKGROUND TO WATER SHARING DISPUTES

The very geographical location of Bangladesh makes it the lowest riparian country of more than 50 trans-boundary rivers. The waters of the Ganges, Brahmaputra and other trans-boundary rivers have been sustaining the life and living of millions of Bangladeshis. Without these waters, the livelihood of millions of Bangladeshis would come under severe stress. Unfortunately, since independence, Bangladesh has been observing with great concern, the gradual reduction of the dry season flows of the Ganges, Teesta and many other trans-boundary rivers due to anthropogenic interventions across the borders – primarily by India. Since its independence in 1947, India has made intensive efforts to harness and develop the water resources in the Ganges basin. The data indicates that India now has several dozen large barrages and other diversionary structures operating in the basin which are capable of diverting 100,000 cusec flows from the Ganges and its different tributaries. Moreover, India has constructed more than 400 major, medium and small storage dams in the basin area. Of these, the major storage reservoirs have a total capacity of 2221 billion cubic feet or 63 billion cubic meters (BCM). Bangladesh itself could not embark upon any such major development of the waters of the trans-boundary rivers including the Ganges in the face of uncertainties of its dry season availability from across the border. Moreover, the flat terrain of Bangladesh does not allow any storage of excess monsoon waters for use during the dry season and such projects would in any case be extortionately exorbitant for the country at its present stage of development and with its limited financial resources.

The consequences for Bangladesh of India’s policy of diversion and withdrawal of water have been both dramatic and devastating. Upstream diversion of the precious dry season flows of the Ganges has adversely affected the hydrology, river morphology, agriculture, domestic and municipal water supply, fishery, forestry, wildlife, industry, navigation, public health and biodiversity in large areas of Bangladesh dependent on the Ganges water. Western analysts have been duped into believing that these negative environmental affects are caused by climate change that will in a few decades result in the rise of sea waters that will inundate large areas of the country. However, the actual cause of increased salinity in the south-western region of Bangladesh has been India’s diversion and withdrawal of water which allows ingress of sea water from the Bay of Bengal due to the reduced natural fresh water flows in the opposite direction during the dry season. Another extremely serious but indirect consequence of this water diversion policy is the contamination of ground water with arsenic. With the reduction of water from India millions in Bangladesh are now forced to access ground water which if pumped continuously over a prolonged period assists a chemical reaction that oxidizes naturally occurring arseno-pyrites deep in the soil resulting in the release of arsenic into the water – a process which may properly described as almost akin to mass poisoning. This consequential alarming degradation of the environment and water supply in south-western Bangladesh has already forced thousands to leave in quest of survival elsewhere. In the face of deteriorating human health, reduced economic productivity and loss of amenities, life and living in this part of Bangladesh people are becoming increasingly vulnerable, insecure and resentful. These are probably the prime causes of conflict between states if history is to be any guide.

THE FARAKKA BARRAGE PROJECT AND DIVERSION OF THE GANGES WATER

 If we leave aside the period between 1947-1971 when Bangladesh was called East Pakistan and considered by India as a hostile entity the likelihood of agreement on water sharing was obviously limited. However, it was during this period that Indian diplomacy became a byword for duplicity and this approach was to continue in its relations with Bangladesh after it obtained independence from Pakistan with the help of the Indian military – which in hindsight had very little to do with altruism or kind hearted generosity and more to do with Indian geo-strategic imperatives. In any case, it was on October 29, 1951 that the then Pakistan government drew the attention of the Indian authorities to the report of a scheme for diverting large amounts of dry season flow of the Ganges. Four months later, on 8 March, 1952 India replied that the project was only under preliminary investigation and described Pakistan’s concern over probable effects as purely hypothetical. Again on May 22, 1953 India reassured Pakistan that the Farraka and Gandak projects (a tributary of the Ganges) were still being investigated and India would appreciate cooperative development of the water resources of the Ganges. Nine years after the issue was first mooted the Government of India announced that it was going ahead with the plan to build a barrage across the River Ganges at Farraka[i] and Pakistan was formally informed. Talks took place occasionally between 1961 and 1970 but real negotiation and consultations did not. By 1970 India completed construction of the Farraka Barrage. The 24 mile feeder canal was, however, not yet ready.

While the Indian government’s behaviour towards Pakistan during this 19 year period (1951-1970) is explicable on the grounds that both nations were inherently inimical towards each other having just fought two wars within just thirty years it is still not explainable why India would adopt the same negotiating tactics towards the new nation of Bangladesh which it had recently assisted in its liberation war? I have provided my own theory in my book ‘The India Doctrine’ where I draw attention to India’s policy of domination over South Asia and an underlying resentment over the 1947 partition which seemingly allows Indian policy makers to ignore the just grievances of its smaller neighbours and not merely in the area of water sharing but including the whole array of bilateral issues that now bedevil interstate relations in the region.

After Bangladesh gained independence in 1971 relations with India gradually deteriorated and this was reflected in negotiations between the countries over water sharing rights. The Governments of India and Bangladesh decided in March 1972 to set up the Indo-Bangladesh Joint Rivers Commission (JRC). One of the major functions of the JRC was to maintain liaison between the participating countries in order to ensure the most effective joint efforts in maximizing the benefits from common river systems to both the countries. The question of sharing the water of the Ganges was, however, kept out of the purview of the JRC, to be settled at the level of Prime Ministers. In this regard, many in Bangladesh felt at the time that the Awami League government of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was too compliant and would easily buckle to Indian demands which actually turned out to be the case. The Prime Minister of India and Bangladesh met in New Delhi in May 1974 and discussed amongst other things, the Ganges issue. Following this meeting, there was a Joint Declaration on May 16, 1974, wherein they observed that during the periods of minimum flow in the Ganges, there might not be enough water and, therefore, the fair weather (dry season) flow of the Ganges in the lean months would have to be augmented to meet the needs of Calcutta port and to fulfill requirement of Bangladesh. They also agreed that the best means of augmentation through optimum utilization of the water resources of the region available to the two countries should be studied by the Joint Rivers Commission. The two sides expressed their determination that before the Farakka project is commissioned; they would arrive at a mutually acceptable allocation of the water available during the periods of minimum flow in the Ganges. The JRC accordingly took up the issue of augmentation of the Ganges flows but was unable to reach any agreement.  

At a subsequent minister level meeting in April 1975 the Indian side proposed a test-run of the feeder canal of the Farakka Barrage for a limited period during that dry season. On good faith, Bangladesh agreed to India’s request and allowed it to operate the feeder canal with varying discharges in ten-day periods from April 21 to May 31, 1975, ensuring the continuance of the remaining flows to Bangladesh. Although India was supposed to divert limited quantities of water from the Ganges for the said test-run up to May 31, 1975, it continued withdrawals from Farakka to the full capacity of the feeder canal during the dry season of 1976 without entering into any understanding or agreement on sharing the flows despite Bangladesh’s repeated requests. The consequences of India’s actions had been tragic. The unilateral Indian withdrawals throughout the dry seasons of 1976 caused a marked reduction in the dry season Ganges flows in Bangladesh. This sudden change in the flow pattern caused an alarming situation in the south western region of Bangladesh.

To cut a long story short, Bangladesh repeatedly requested India to stop the unilateral withdrawals but this bore little fruit. Bangladesh then took the issue to the United Nations in 1976 and the General Assembly urged both sides to seek an immediate solution. Between 1977 and 1988 Bangladesh and India signed several temporary agreements but no permanent understanding could be reached. Between 1988 and 1996 there was no instrument for sharing the dry season Ganges flows between the two countries. In the absence of any agreement, India again started unilateral withdrawals from Farakka. It was not until the Awami League returned to power in 1996 in Bangladesh under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina (daughter of the slain leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman) that a treaty between the countries was signed on the sharing of the Ganges Water at Farakka. This treaty has not been viewed favourably in Bangladesh as it was felt to be a subservient arrangement without the usual safeguards and guarantees and contrary to norms of international law. It appears these apprehensions were well founded as recent reports suggest that the quantity of water flowing down from the Farakka point has been declining due to the withdrawal of water by India through various canals in violation of the water sharing agreement.  

The treaty is now under legal challenge in the Supreme Court of Bangladesh on the following grounds amongst others –

  1. That Bangladesh has been receiving lesser amounts of flows at Farakka as its share compared to the quanta it should be receiving as agreed between the contracting parties set out in the schedule contained in Annexure II of the Treaty.
  2. The instruments signed by Bangladesh and India do not provide entitlement to the former to participate or to become party to negotiations on any water course or in any consultations thereof e.g. Bangladesh cannot participate in the bilateral negotiation between India and Nepal which aim to implement projects on major tributaries of the Ganges river emanating from the Nepalese territory like the Pancheswar and Saptkosi High Dam Projects.
  3. Over the last three decades the Bangladesh government has repeatedly requested India for upstream hydro-meteorological data of the Ganges, Brahamputra and other rivers. The Indian side has declined to supply or exchange such upstream data and information. The 1996 treaty and other Indo-Bangladesh agreements are totally silent about the provisioning of this information.
  4. India either unilaterally or bilaterally with Nepal and Bhutan are undertaking planned measures for harnessing and regulating water resources of the Ganges, Brahmaputra, Meghna and some of their tributaries without informing or providing notification to the downstream riparian country of those rivers which is Bangladesh.
  5. The 1996 Treaty and other Indo-Bangladesh do not provide for any third-party arbitration on settlement of disputes.  

These are only a few of the grounds that are claimed by the petitioner to be in contravention of customary international law and in particular the provisions of the 1997 UN Convention on the Law of the Non-Navigational Uses of International Watercourses and the Berlin Rules on Water Resources[ii] which both contain internationally accepted safeguards and guarantees that were omitted from the 1996 treaty. In particular, India’s withdrawal of waters in an unreasonable and inequitable manner and the terms of the 1996 treaty appear to be in violation of Articles 7,8,13,17,29,56,57,58,59,60,68,72 and 73 of the Berlin Rules but most importantly and significantly Article 12 which states –

1. Basin States shall in their respective territories manage the waters of an international drainage basin in an equitable and reasonable manner having due regard for the obligation not to cause significant harm to other basin States.

2. In particular, basin States shall develop and use the waters of the basin in order to attain the optimal and sustainable use thereof and benefits therefrom, taking into account the interests of other basin States, consistent with adequate protection of the waters. 

And Article 16 which provides –  

Basin States, in managing the waters of an international drainage basin, shall refrain from and prevent acts or omissions within their territory that cause significant harm to another basin State having due regard for the right of each basin State to make equitable and reasonable use of the waters. 

Regardless of the outcome of the case, relations between Bangladesh and India are likely to deteriorate as agreement on water sharing in an equitable and reasonable manner appear a distant and forlorn prospect making conflict a more likely scenario. In some respects, a low level conflict has already begun as there are frequent and bloody skirmishes between the two countries border security forces and occasionally fighting has occurred over construction of groins and spurs on the Indian side intended to divert the course of rivers so that they encroach further into Bangladesh territory while supplementing the Indian side.

RIVER LINKING PROJECT

 If the Farakka Barrage dispute had been the only bone of contention between the two countries then some minimum resolution to the dispute may have been forthcoming but with India (in total disregard of the environmental harm that would be sustained by Bangladesh) now undertaking the massive River Linking Project (RLP) a further serious deterioration in relations is inevitable. Quite astonishingly, the RLP concept was conceived not by an expert committee or by the relevant government department but instead by the Indian Supreme Court which ruled (in relation to a Public Interest Litigation hearing) that there should be interlinking of rivers to offset drought and flooding in various parts of the country. Justice Kirpal set a 10 year deadline for implementation of the project. A brief six-page order passed on October 31, 2002 formed the basis on which the Indian government set up a high powered task force which devised a Perspective Plan comprising two components –

  1. Peninsular Rivers Development; and
  2. Himalayan Rivers Development

The Peninsular Rivers Component envisages the inter-linking of several major rivers at several different points along their course. The Himalayan Rivers Component which poses more serious difficulties for Bangladesh envisages construction of storages on the principal tributaries of the Ganges and the Brahmaputra in India, Nepal and Bhutan. Also, canal systems are to be inter-linked to transfer surplus flows of the eastern tributaries of the Ganges to the West apart from linking the (main) Brahmaputra and its tributaries with the Ganges and the Ganges with Mahanadi.

The effect of the RLP on Bangladesh has been variously described as devastating, catastrophic and also causing incalculable and irreparable damage to the country’s environment and ecological balance. This unfortunately is not mere exaggeration since the Brahmaputra and the Ganges provides more than 85% of the total surface water available in Bangladesh during the dry season. Of the two, the Brahmaputra provides 67% of the water. The diversion and withdrawal of these waters under the RLP would constitute a similar proposition to Bangladesh as the Iraqi WMD program did (under the Saddam Hussain regime) for the United States and the United Kingdom. In the present context the threat to Bangladesh is not hypothetical.

In the face of this looming crisis the Government of Bangladesh has already lodged protests to the Government of India expressing serious concern over the RLP and has urged India to refrain from implementation of the plan. The Government has also communicated Bangladesh’s serious concern over the Indian plan to the World Bank and Asian Development Bank and requested them to desist from providing any support to India relating to this plan. The matter was also raised during several meetings of the JRC where India was urged to desist from such a move without the consent of Bangladesh. It appears, however, that the Indian political leadership is committed to go ahead with this plan at the cost of its neighbours. The feeling is intensifying in the minds of the general public in Bangladesh against the Indian plan and their voice of protest is growing louder with the passage of time.

Considering that the Farraka Barrage and the RLP are only two of the many projects being undertaken by the Indian Government to divert and withdraw waters from the common rivers indicates that water sharing disputes with Bangladesh will progressively increase and naturally lead to growing tensions between the countries. The other major disputes on water sharing now include the Teesta, Feni, Meghna, Mahananda, Monu, Khowai, Gumti, Muhuri and Kodla Rivers and also construction of the Tipaimukh Dam in Manipur district of India. This last mentioned project has had the effect of eroding a large portion of Sylhet district in Bangladesh with almost 5000 acres drifting towards the Indian side following erosion of the riverbanks due to an artificial change in the course of the rivers Surma and Kushiara. All these water sharing disputes and the continued disregard for the concerns expressed by Bangladesh about these projects and the continuation of diversion and withdrawal of water in an unreasonable and inequitable manner is being viewed as an attack on the sovereignty of the country which if not restrained and outstanding issues settled amicably could lead to conflict in the coming decades.    

THIS PAPER WAS WRITTEN AS A SPEECH AND HEAVY RELIANCE WAS MADE ON CERTAIN EXPERT PAPERS THAT WERE NOT NOTED AT THE TIME OF WRITING. THE NOTES AND REFERENCES BELOW IS THEREFORE PARTIAL AND IF ANYONE RECOGNISES ANY ELEMENT OF THEIR WORK IN THIS PAPER PLEASE INFORM THE WRITER SO INCLUSION MAY BE MADE IN THE REFERENCE SECTION. ANY OMISSION ON THE PART OF THE WRITER WAS COMPLETELY INADVERTANT. THE PAPER IS BEING RELEASED MERELY FOR INFORMATION PURPOSES AND NOT FOR PROFIT.   

NOTES


[i] India constructed the Farakka Barrage on the Ganges to divert the water flowing through Bangladesh to maintain navigability of the Calcutta Port 260 km away, whereas Crow et al. support that stagnation of the Port of Calcutta was due to the decline of the industrial activity and overall economic activity, and that a minimum research efforts or unfinished investigations for possible alternative to the construction of Farakka Barrage was performed. The growth of the Calcutta Port was one-fortieth of the growth of other Indian ports. It was at the acme of development during the British rule in India (1870-1947) when the port carried 40-50% of India’s exports and imports. The port growth had declination of 23%, 11%, and 10% in the mid-sixties, late seventies, and in the late eighties of the last century, respectively. Dredging of the port was the best solution since the port failed to demonstrate convincingly the importance of the Farakka Barriage.

[ii] The Rules present a comprehensive collection of all the relevant customary international law that a water manager or a court or other legal decision maker would have to take into account in resolving issues relating to the management of water resources. These Rules set about to provide a clear, co-gent, and coherent statement of the customary international law that applies to waters of international drainage basins, and to the extent that customary international law applies to waters entirely within a State, to all waters as well. These Rules also undertake the progressive development of the law needed to cope with emerging problems of international or global water management for the twenty-first century.

REFERENCES –

Dr. Miah Muhammad AdelUpstream Controller’s Dual Benefits at the Cost of Downstream Drainer’s Double Trouble (NFB – August 13, 2007)

Megh Barta – River linking project of India (4-August-2007)

International Law Association – BERLIN CONFERENCE (2004)  WATER RESOURCES LAW (

The Daily Star – Rivers dying as Ganges project remains in limbo (January 26, 2008)

The Daily Star – Tipaimukh dam to destroy ecology in Meghna basin (October 28, 2007)

The Daily Star – Unilateral withdrawal of Brahmaputra waters? (June 8, 2007)

The Daily Star – We can’t assure availability of water due to climatic reason (May 29, 2007)

The Daily Star – New courses of frontier-rivers changing Bangladesh’s map (May 7, 2007)

The Daily Star – Bangladesh loses land due to erosion by Sylhet border rivers (July 5, 2008)

New Age – Debunking the ‘NASA’ doomsday climate prediction for Bangladesh (July 5, 2008)

New Age – India’s violation of water sharing deal hampers irrigation (April 5, 2008)

New Age – Water should be used to unify South Asian people: experts (July 13, 2008)

The BD Today – Natural catastrophe apprehended along river Padma (May 23, 2008)

The BD Today – Unilateral withdrawal of waters threatens ecology in Padma basin :Indo-Bangla treaty grossly violates water sharing (November 14, 2007)

The News Today – River navigability in southern region on decrease (June 13, 2008)

The News Today – Death of the Rivers (May 23, 2008)

The News Today – Indian Tipaimukh dam to be death trap for Bangladesh (February 12, 2007)

The New Nation – Structure on other side blamed: Ichhamati shifts into Bangladesh (July 6, 2008)

The New Nation – Indian HC’s remark repudiated: Bangladesh deprived of dry season river flow (May 8, 2008)

The New Nation – Damned hearings on Tipaimukh Dam (May 5, 2008)

India Express – River sutras :The river interlinking project is another disaster waiting to happen (April 26, 2005)

John Vidal – India’s Dream, Bangladesh’s Disaster (The Guardian – 24 July, 2003)

Shailendra Nath Ghosh – Interlinking Rivers -The Millennial Folly (Countercurrrnets.org- 15 May, 2003)

Abdur Rahman Khan – Bangladesh drying up as India withdrawing Ganges water (HOLIDAY – April 1, 2008)  

NFB – India provides less Ganges water for Bangladesh : Dhaka’s protest remains unheeded  (February 17, 2008)

NFB – River Linking Project of India- Expectations (May 16, 2008)

Priyo – Bangladesh drying up as India withdrawing Ganges water (April 3, 2008)

 http://groups.yahoo.com/group/dhakamails/message/3596



RAW in Nepal
August 20, 2008, 12:46 pm
Filed under: India, Nepal
Issues galore!
N.P.Upadhyaya

Kathmandu: Nepal as a nation-state has very calculatedly entered into an era that is to be henceforth dominated by the REDS. The two major REDS, read the Maoists and the UML, if go on board together compromising on critical issues in a friendly manner, the coalition can continue for decades and decades.

But the question is whether the REDS who have a habit of being at each other’s throats on even petty issues could prolong their “intimacy” for the broader interest of the Communist alliance?

The power struggle has already begun in between the two major constituent, the Maoists and the UML over the “allocation” of key portfolios. Hopefully, if the wrangling over sharing of the power-booty takes an ugly shape the bonhomie in between the two REDS will disintegrate like the house of cards.

In addition, the Madhesi Janadhikar Forum which has emerged as the key player in Nepali politics possesses the potential to swing the two communist veterans, Pushpa Kamal Dahal and Jhal Nath Khanal in a way as desired by the Forum managers.

As of writing this story Tuesday afternoon, the parties in coalition- the UML, the Maoists and the MJF- were fighting with each other over ministerial berths.

Analysts presume that the current bickering will continue to irk this alliances in the days to come if one were to take into account the “characters and the habits” of Nepali parties when it came to the power distribution scheme.

The Delhi formula:

It has been exactly thirty three months of the signing of the most (in) famous Delhi sponsored and “prearranged” peace agreement that facilitated the Maoists to assume power in Nepal.

Intelligent brains thus are advised to mull over as to whether the Maoists brought the then agitating liberals to their sphere of political influence or vice versa upon signing the New Delhi engineered agreement that was so scrupulously signed by the then seven parties in alliance against the Royal regime?

 

With the Maoists coming to power, what has come to the fore is that the New Delhi establishment first wanted to do away with the Royal institution, which it did successfully, and then preferred the entire Nepali Congress paraphernalia to vanish in the ethereal medium which is what has been the case since August 15, 2008.

Thus if the Institution of the monarchy was forced to say good bye to the nation after thirty one months of signing the Delhi agreement then the party of the so called liberals, the Nepali Congress, too tentatively has decayed after thirty three months of the said agreement. Some even say that with Koirala going out of the country’s political scene, his legacy too has come to an end once and for all. Poor Sujata Koirala.

The Indian gift:

What else could be a best gift to the Nepali Congress that the party that ran under the dictatorial whims and the diktats of the Koiralas’ and also remained as a “servant of the Indian establishment” since its inception some six decades back was defeated by the Maoists on a very special day for the Nepali Congress-15th August which coincidentally is the day when the Indians gained independence from their former British masters.

To recall, last week on Friday, 15 August, Prime Minister Koirala was ousted democratically by none less than the Maoist leader, Pushpa Kamal Dahal and thus this special date will be remembered by both Koirala and Mr. Dahal. The first for his ouster and the second one for his elevation as the country’s Prime Minister. This date has symbolic importance.

The US prophecy:

No wonder then the United States Ambassador James F. Moriarty had said February 15, 2006 had said at a Kathmandu gathering that he saw the India sponsored agreement singed on November 22, 2005 as a design of the Maoists to bring the democratic parties then in agitation into their sphere of political influence. With Pushpa Kamal Dahal bouncing to the power corridors of Nepal well within thirty months of the 2005 agreement in many more ways than one proves that the US Ambassador’s prediction made then was more than correct.

Uphill tasks ahead:

Having said this, analysts wish to dwell upon the Himalayan odd jobs that lay ahead of the former rebel leader who has assumed the post of the country’s Prime Minister.

Firstly, how Prachanda when twisted by the Indian establishment escapes unharmed will have to be watched. It is hoped that the Indian authorities who have had provided shelter and other logistics to the Maoists while being in New Delhi and had also encouraged the latter to wage a sort of fierce struggle with the King will hundred percent ask for the repayment both in cash and kind from the Maoists.

No free luncheon in the diplomacy and thus no wonder that the Saturn like southern neighbor has already sent its special emissaries to sound to the Maoists leader turned Nepal’s Prime Minister that he has to pay now. These uninvited Indian luminaries were located at the swearing in ceremony of Nepal’s new prime Minister Monday afternoon. The Indian national are here to “congratulate” Nepal’s new prime Minister. The Indian tamasha.

Yechuri factor:

Nepal’s real Indian mentor, Sita Ram Yechuri is soon to land in Kathmandu. He will do so under the pretext of congratulating Prime Minister of Nepal. Though this would be just a cover for his “dangerous” visit to Nepal, he is coming to Nepal, say analysts, to press Pushpa Kamal Dahal to offer more Hydro Projects to India and that too at a dirt cheap price. Needless to say Yechuri was the one who managed the “camaraderie” of the Maoists with the Sonia’s government in New Delhi. Analysts remain determined that though Yechuri is a friend of Prachanda but then yet from heart and soul he is an Indian national and thus he would ask free advantages for his country from Nepal’s Prime Minister. Failing to pay back, Yechuri might bring about calamity to the entire Maoist paraphernalia.

The Yechuri factor is sure to dilute the nationalist credentials of the Maoists in the days ahead. Yechuri is right when he asks the repayment of all what he did for the Maoists while they were in NOIDA, New Delhi via Nepali Jungles. But what the new Maoist led government will provide to the Indian establishment will have to be watched?

To recall, Yechuri is the son-in-law of D.R. Joshi. Mr. Joshi is a high level functionary of the Indian intelligence agency.

To boot, former Home Minister Krishna Prasad Sitaula too is the son-in-law of the same RAW official and thus Sitaula and Yechuri are brothers by law. Thus Yechuri’s friendship with Prachanda smells rat.

The RAW connection:

 By now it has already been established that the Maoists are fair “intimacy” with the Indian Intelligence agency-RAW. At time of the presidential election, it was in the rumor that the Maoists preferred the candidacy of the legendary republican leader Ram Raja Prasad Singh under the instructions of the RAW.

Media reports have it that the RAW Kathmandu manager Mr. Alok Joshi’s sphere of political influence in the Maoists camp is all pervasive and binding as well. No wonder then at a recent Central Committee meeting of the Maoists held in Kathmandu the Maoists leader Mohan Vaidya alias KIRAN bluntly said that his party was experiencing the “hurricane” from the South on a regular basis and that some of “our friends” deliberately open the “windows” to allow the Southern wind to enter into their room.

Mr. KIRAN is considered as a hardliner in the Maoist camp.

No wonder then many a Maoists CC members now conclude that the party of the ex-rebels is inching towards the South. Unsubstantiated reports have it that the Maoists camp is currently divided into two distinct groups: the first comprises of those members who want to liberate Nepal from the clutches of the Indian establishment. The other understandably is of the opinion that Nepal can’t proceed towards the path of development without the support of expansionist India. 

How PM Mr. Dahal brings out the country and his party from the firm grips of Monsieur Alok Joshi will be no less interesting event to observe.

Prachanda’s quandary:

Pushpa Kamal Dahal has assumed the post of the PM of Nepal at a time when the country is on the verge of collapse.

This apart, he will have an uphill task to keep his high ranking party members united or else the party can explode with a big bang any time soon.

The Indian factor will boggle the mind of the new Prime Minister. Even a slight mistake on the part of Mr. Dahal while “dealing” with the expansionist neighbor will instantly oxidize his nationalist credentials that would allow the intellectuals to equate him with the power hungry and declared India’s servant, Koirala, which he was by all means.

How he proceeds in the days ahead will be worth watching. No less interesting would be his impending dealing with the leech like Indian nationals of the sorts of Yechuri, Bhadauria, Tripathi and the daddy of them all, Mr. Shyam Saran-the master destructive brain who ultimately wants Nepal broken into pieces. His efforts in this regards are on through his “salaried” stooges in Nepal, rumors claim.

If Saran is denied what he wants from Prachanda then what is for sure is that the latter’s days will be numbered in the government structure.  

http://www.telegraphnepal.com/news_det.php?news_id=3938

Isha Khan  bdmailer@gmail.com



Movement of RAW in Nepal , a book by Dr Shastra Dutta Pant
August 3, 2008, 10:01 am
Filed under: India, Nepal
Movement of RAW in Nepal , a book by Dr Shastra Dutta Pant

At the time when local newspapers, political leaders, intellectuals, among others, are talking about the active presence of Indians while destabilizing our politics as well as the economy, thus making defunct one after another institutions, Pant has brought out the publication “Nepalma RAW Ko Chalkhel (Movement of RAW in Nepal).

There are many questions yet to be answered. Just look at the current issues: Why the Royal Palace massacre took place immediately after the late King’s China visit? Why the parliament passed the finance bill in a disguised manner? Was King Birendra’s decision to consult the Supreme Court before giving Royal assent on a controversial bill the reason for the Royal Palace bloodbath? Why Indian political leaders put pressure on the marriage of the then Crown Prince Dipendra? How could the Maoists get safe shelter in
Indian territory? How did they get arms from India? Why the five political parties are launching a “joint-movement” at the time when the Maoists have announced cease fire? Why the political parties are trying to limit the Royal Palace role as well as the Army affairs? Why KV Rajans are here at the time of change of the government? After all, who are running such games from behind the scene?

One may get some answers to the above questions while reading the book “Movement of RAW in Nepal”.It is strongly assumed that the Indian intelligence unit is actively involved in manipulating newspapers, intellectuals, political leaders making them supporters of India. The fact is that leaders of major political
parties do not speak about the Kalapani issue, the India constructed embankments inundating Nepalese fertile soil, border encroachment by the Indians, among others.

It is very much interesting to note that Nepal has no problem with our neighbouring country China whereas we are facing countless problems with India, either it is in the operation of the dry-port in Birgunj or export of ghee, beer etc..While giving the background, the publication explains about RAW activities
while creating Bangladesh from Pakistan, RAW activities in Bhutan, Maldives, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Sikkim annexation.

The main objective of the RAW is to create internal trouble in neighbouring countries and take benefit from the trouble that the neighbouring countries face. That apart, their present interest towards Nepal is to fail the Nepalese economy and create monopoly in the Nepalese market. India is showing double-standards towards Nepal. On the one hand the Indian government is supporting our government with arms on the other the RAW is supporting the Maoists.

RAW, a powerful Indian intelligence – Research Analysis Wing – ultimately aims to defunct Nepal.The publication has cited on Nepal-India government level relations,relations of political parties and people of the two countries, and Nepal’s relations with RAW.The publication has also referred to the RAW intention and expectations in Nepal.

RAW involvement in border encroachment and intervention, water politics of RAW, security concern of RAW have been described in the publication.The author has referred different books as well as a series of articles
published in different newspapers, magazines.It is essential for the Nepalese to know about the RAW activities and understand the origin of current problems by reading the publication.

At the time when it has become difficult to search out intellectuals dedicated towards the motherland, Dr. Pant appears as a personality who has the courage to unmask the RAW grand design in Nepal.
By bringing out the publication, the author has done a commendable job.Concerned sectors need to be timely alerted from the RAW design upon Nepal as described by Dr. Pant.

Authored and published by: Dr. Shastra Dutta Pant, Institute of Rural
Development:
First edition: April 2003
Printed by: United Graphics Printers P. Ltd., New Plaza, Ramshah Path,
Kathmandu.
Price: Rs. 194.00.

Source:[http://www.yomari.com/p-review/2003/06/19062003/book.html]

Posted by Isha Khan  bdmailer@gmail.com

 


Frailty , Thy Name is Woman
July 23, 2008, 8:41 pm
Filed under: Nepal
Frailty , Thy Name is Woman

 
BY: Prem Raj

This is not a mythical story but a legendary tale in which a death fairy dancing through the corridors of Nepal’s palace slumbers the top slot to sleep for ever.

Devyani Rana, a charismatic personality, a gorgeous figure, a spell bound beauty in a style of convincing others, who was not only trained to become the beloved queen of the Nepal’s crown prince Dipendra but also to hypnotize by mounting on his nerves and then driving in the direction she liked him to move.

This was an uphill task but she was given lot of money to exhibit her beauty and trained in manners to impress the Royal family of Nepal.

A glorified history of Nepal is spread over the period of 9 thousand years in which the kingdom stood as the symbol of unity, respect and grandeur. But this was never accepted by India having expansive designs in the Region and thus becoming a military might with a radical political philosophy, whether it was Kashmir, Bengal, Bhutan, Tibet, Sri Lanka and Nepal, India always had a ubiquitous policy of having hegemony over the South Asian countries. So Nepal a beautiful bird was caged as having shut the only exit to separate it geographically, to kneel her down and was left to the mercy of India, for every petty need.

Most of the party leaders of Nepal were taught in various Indian schools and colleges so to remain spoon fed by the RAW and even within the ruling Rana hierarchy some of them were segmented to voice against the monarchy. To detonate the Kingdom, the training rendered by the RAW and the services volunteered by the nightingale Devyani Rana who is related to India’s aristocratic Scindia family and also belonged to the Rana clan which ruled Nepal until 1951, were acquired. The family of Devyani Rana had been at loggerheads with the kingdom’s monarchy and thus being poles apart the proposal of marrying Dipendra was never acceptable to both the families.

But for the RAW this became a soft entry to the palace to ignite her nefarious activities thus climbing on to the shoulders of two RANAS to erase the palace. The RAW has always been at the look out of the figure like Devyani Rana who has deep rooted history in Nepal and branches bearing fruits in India. She was just raw when came before the RAW but within six months she turned out to be a well trained agent and now changed in to Rani from Rana.

An explosive beauty of Devyani Rana now could attract a person of any age and then destroy him but the target assigned to her was to bug the palace. Now she headed for the crown prince to lower him in to the jar of her charismatic and enchanting beauty.

Dipendra was unable to witness a glimpse of the queen beloved thus submitted before her. Dipendra became a puppet in the skilled hands of Devyani Rana and could not comprehend the plot set for him or for his family he did whatever he was told to do by his beloved. Dipendra was made to drink and drink until he became addict but in the process he was brain washed as well. Drink offered to him was not by anyone but by Devyani Rana, the daughter of Pashputi Shamsher Rana who has been one of Nepal’s most influential politicians, now heading a faction of the Rashtriya Prajatantrik Party.

It was June Ist, 2001, when Devyani Rana was given a green signal by her mistress the RAW to accomplish the mission and the time fixed was the annual dinner in which all the Royal family members are gathered to attend the feast. Devyani Rana sitting beside Dipendra, the crown prince and continuously offering him a wine to drink whereas other family members await for the missing crown on the dining table. The whole palace is lit except the ghostly dimmed lights in the room where Dipendra is drinking by the hands of his beloved Devyani Rana who is reciting the verses of John Keats,…………

My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains

My sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk,

Or emptied some dull opiate to the drains

One minute past, and Lethe-wards had sunk

So this goes on and gets disturbed when the bell rings in the chamber of the prince. She attends to the call, “you move him now and if need be there exists three armed men, in the gallery close to your room as they always used to be there, from my squad”, at the other end the instructions were passed by a well acquainted person. She now holds a gun and tries to hand it over to Dipendra, while saying if they refuse, you better kill them as promised by you, because we have to bind ourselves in to a marital knot at any cost. But Dipendra lying motionless in a couch did not respond due to over dose. She rushed to the gallery and instructed the guards appointed by the RAW thus leading them in to the hall where the banquet was being served. The guards sprawled the bullets all around and there fell eight members of the Royal family dead.

Now she entered the room where her paramour was present but almost unconscious, the guard tried to straighten the gun and she cautioned him to stop as she herself was eager to say sayonara and present him the last salute. Thus she sprayed the bullets which pierced through the body of Dipendra and then the nightingale flew on the wings of the RAW. But she forgot to leave behind the weapon to satisfy the suicidal episode included in the plot, prepared by the RAW, which has made the drama ambiguous and esoteric..

Now came the news that 34 years old lady, once upon a time the beloved of the crown prince and then a heroine of the massacre killing of the royal family of Nepal is getting married to Indian Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Arjun Singh’s grand son Aishwariya Friday, in a ceremony which has to be attended by Mr. Manmohan Singh, the Prime Minister of India, because of her remarkable services rendered while risking her life and sacrificing her youth for the country, she deserves much more than that. She has to be honoured by the leading personalities of India while becoming a legend and a living character of Agatha Christie’s novel and depicting the most tragic event of Hamlet’s drama when the nightingale sings a death song and the painful notes strike the domes of the palace in the silence of midnight when the royals are laid to rest in peace and the blood of Dipendra writing on the floor,………………………………

NOTE: This article was written by the author ten days before the marriage of Devyani Rana with Aishwariya

PREM RAJ
E Mail : premlaliguras@hotmail.com

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