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Monday, November 8, 2010

Barack Obama backs India's quest for permanent "UNSC" seat

PTI, New Delhi, 8 November : US President Barack Obama today announced support for India's quest for permanent membership of a "reformed" UN Security Council (UNSC) "in the years ahead", as he wrapped up his three-day state visit.
His widely-awaited endorsement of India joining the elite club of five permanent members of the UNSC came in the course of 35-minute address to members of both Houses of Parliament and was greeted with thunderous thumping of desks.
The announcement is seen as a diplomatic gesture although it was clear that the reform of the Security Council is going to be a long and tedious process. With that in mind, Obama pointedly used the expression "in the years ahead". Photos : PTI, AP

NDFB rebels gun down eight in Assam's Sonitpur district
PTI, Tezpur (Assam), 8 November : Eight persons, mostly Arunachal Pradesh government employees, were shot dead and 12 others injured today when NDFB rebels intercepted the bus in which they were travelling in Assam's Sonitpur district and fired indiscriminately.
Six armed militants opened fire on the Arunachal Pradesh State Transport bus at remote Boimara area near Itakhola in Sootea police station area around 4 pm, Inspector General of Police (Northern Range) S N Singh told PTI.

Four persons killed in West Midnapore during Maoist bandh
Jhargram, Kolkata, 8 November : Four persons, including a woman, were shot dead by suspected Maoists in West Midnapore district during the 24-hour shutdown called by the Maoists against US President Barack Obama's visit while a Maoist camp was busted and a huge cache of weapons and landmines seized after a gunfight in Bankura district today.
Motorcycle borne assailants gunned down Kanai Ray, a former CPI(M) panchayat pradhan at Patashimul gram panchayet in the afternoon, officials said. Three others identified as Rashbehari Mahato,Sandhya Mahato, and Sheikh Wajed Ali were abducted by gun-toting persons last night from Kishmatganakata village, in Jhargram subdivision and their bullet-riddled bodies were found on the road nearby this morning, officials said.
Rashbehari Mahato was a local expert on chou dance, while Ali was an employee of the BDO office, they said. All three were CPI(M) supporters, with Rashbehari Mahato being a member of the party's local committee, they said. File Photo : AP

Bangladesh seeks to import cotton directly from Uzbekistan
YarnsandFibers, 8 November : Bangladesh seeks to import cotton directly from Uzbekistan, a major growing country, to stave off adverse impact on prices in the domestic market from purchase of the raw material for the booming textile sector through third-party sources.
Commerce ministry officials said a government delegation, headed by Commerce Minister Faruk Khan, will visit Tashkent on 7-11 November and discuss with the Uzbek leaders about establishing direct trade link. "If the direct trading facility is established, Bangladesh will be able to procure more cotton at cheaper prices to cool down the local overheated yarn market," a senior commerce ministry official told.... READ FULL STORY

Bangladesh govt to launch 3G mobile phone in 3 months
Xinhua News Agency, Dhaka, 8 November : Bangladesh government has taken projects to introduce third generation (3G) technology in the country within three months, Post and Telecommunication Minister Rajiuddin Ahmed Raju said on Sunday.
The minister announced this at a press conference and said that the process is underway to introduce the 3G mobile phone. The spokesperson of the ministry Shefayet Hossain told Xinhua by phone on Sunday that under the project both mobile phone service and internet could be used with one single phone set.
Opposition walks out of Assam Assembly over 'dam issue'
Guwahati, 8 November : The AGP-led Opposition today staged a walkout in the Assam Assembly over the Speaker's refusal to admit an adjournment motion on building of mega dams in Arunachal Pradesh.
On the admission of the motion, leader of Opposition Prafulla Kukar Mahanta said the lower Subsansiri dam project will have adverse downstream impact on the state and demanded that it be closed.
BNP Suprimo Khaleda Zia opposes transit facility to India
IANS, Dhaka, 8 November : Bangladesh’s opposition leader and BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia has demanded that the government scrap all deals, including one on transit, with India.
Zia claimed at a rally Sunday that India would not pay any duty for the transit facilities. ‘Earlier, they (government) said Bangladesh will be Singapore and crores of taka will be earned. But now we hear India will not pay any duty against transit facilities. I would resist the government’s anti-state activities ‘even if it costs my life’, she told the rally organised to mark the ‘National Revolution and Solidarity Day’.
B'desh to expedite water cooperation process with India
PTI, Dhaka, 8 November : Peeved by the inordinate delay in reaching agreements on water sharing with India, Bangladesh foreign minister Dr Dipu Moni has said that at this rate the two neighbours would need "a millennium" to sign deals on 54 common rivers.
"In 40 years we have done (agreement) for one (Ganges), (and) are on the verge of doing another one (Teesta's water). At this rate we will need another millennium to conclude agreements on all 54 (rivers)," an official statement here quoted Dr Moni as saying. "We have to think how to accelerate the process of striking deals on rivers other than the Ganges," she said, pointing out that the present government has attached highest priority towards concluding water sharing treaty of Teesta. "We finally believe that we shall be able to sign an interim agreement for sharing of the Teesta waters in near future," she said.
The two countries in the past several months witnessed several ministerial and official meetings on the Teesta water issue. After talks with Indian finance minister Pranab Mukherjee three months ago, Moni said an interim deal on the water sharing in the major common river would be signed next year.
Bangladeshi media report, however, earlier reported that despite the absence of the treaty India released substantial quantum of waters opening up regulating systems in the upstream region in the lean period earlier this year infusing some sense of relief among farmers in the northwestern districts.
Under a 1983 understanding Bangladeshis supposed to get 36% share of the flow and India 39% allowing the rests to be flowed naturally.
Bangladesh and India had inked a landmark treaty on sharing of the Ganges water during Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's previous 1996-201 tenure removing a major irk in bilateral ties.