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Showing posts from October 6, 2013

Believe in the India Luxury Market October 4, 2013 8:22 am   Rachna Sharma, Hotelier India was always a luxury appreciating country from the time of Maharajas to the middle affluent consumer today. luxury-india-marketI was raised in a small town of Jammu & Kashmir and always thought that the world was mine. However, while growing-up, I started learning the meaning of luxury in my childhood, which kept evolving with time. Sometimes an ice cream from Baskin-Robbins over Mother Dairy became a luxury and sometimes traveling to Kashmir by plane was a luxury when everyone else traveled long hours in public transport over bumpy hilly roads. Until around 1995 – 2000, I assumed very few Indian kids — I would say only the elites — probably knew the difference and name of luxury brands, be it hotels, automobiles, clothing etc. Times have changed now; ever since luxury brands entered India, the Indian consumer has come a long way. Enough has been said ab

Turkey spymaster pulls the strings in Syria

Source: Gulf News Istanbul: On a rainy May day, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan led two of his closest advisers into the Oval Office for what both sides knew would be a difficult meeting. It was the first face-to-face between Erdogan and US President Barack Obama in almost a year. Obama delivered what US officials describe as an unusually blunt message: The US believed Turkey was letting arms and fighters flow into Syria indiscriminately and sometimes to the wrong rebels, including jihadists. Seated at Erdogan’s side was the man at the centre of what caused the US’s unease, Hakan Fidan, Turkey’s powerful spymaster and a driving force behind its efforts to supply the rebels and topple Syrian President Bashar Al Assad. In the wake of the Arab Spring uprisings, Fidan, little known outside the Middle East, has emerged as a key architect of a Turkish regional security strategy that has tilted the interests of the longtime US ally in ways sometimes counter to those of t

China’s Interests in Shaksgam Valley Senge Sering, President of Institute for Gilgit Baltistan Studies October 10, 2013 6:59 am Share Button To date, China occupies more than 20,000 square kilometer of Gilgit-Baltistan covering Shaksgam, Raskam and Aghil valleys. shaksgam-valley-baltistanChinese nationals are once again in the newspapers of Gilgit-Baltistan, this time for smuggling heavy precious metals and gems out of the region. Similar reports also appeared last year when they tried to smuggle uranium, gold and copper from Gilgit-Baltistan. The Chinese model of mineral exploration fails to support Gilgit-Baltistan’s economy since the corporations do not provide jobs to the locals and deny a share in the revenue to the resource-owners. To make the situation worse, the Pakistani regime has placed a ten-year ban on local businesses involved in gem extraction and trade. Undue concessions to the international corporations and ban on the locals affect

India in the South China Sea: Commercial Motives, Strategic Implications

Publication: China Brief Volume: 13 Issue: 20October 10, 2013 04:21 PM Age: 2 days By: Rup Narayan Das Although India is not a party to the South China Sea dispute, in recent years—particularly since Secretary of State Hilary Clinton vigorously advocated freedom of navigation in the South China Sea at the Asian Regional Forum meeting in Hanoi in July 2010, and India endorsed the stance—Beijing has grown wary of India’s intentions in the South China Sea. This wariness was further exacerbated in September 2011, when India and Vietnam announced plans to sign an agreement for oil exploration in the South China Sea. Beijing responded by saying that China enjoys indisputable sovereignty over the South China Sea, and that China’s stand was based on historical facts and international law. It was further stated that China was opposed to any project in the South China Sea, without directly referring to India (The Pioneer, September 16, 2011). The same day, while answering a question rais

Ashton Carter quits, blow to US-India defence ties By Ajai Shukla Business Standard, 12th Oct 13 In a setback to the evolving US-India defence relationship, US Deputy Secretary of Defence, Ashton Carter, has announced that he will retire on Dec 4. Since the beginning of this year, when President Obama appointed Chuck Hagel to succeed Leon Panetta as Secretary of Defence, Washington has buzzed with rumours about Carter’s dissatisfaction at not being promoted to the post. Since Jun 2012, Carter has almost single-handedly pushed US-India defence ties through the Defence Trade and Technology Initiative (DTI), which he co-chairs with India’s National Security Advisor (NSA) Shivshankar Menon. The DTI aims to smoothen the flow of high technology by unlocking US regulatory hurdles to the export of sensitive technologies to India. With Defence Minister AK Antony disinclined to deepen ties with Washington, Menon encountered severe limitations on what he

Baloch resist illegal occupation by Pakistan

BALOCH RESIST ILLEGAL OCCUPATION BY PAKISTAN Pakistan’s Home and Tribal Affairs department revealed that 592 mutilated bodies have been recovered from Balochistan since 2010.The official record reveals a half-truth, but it exposes Pakistan’s notorious “pick, kill and dump” policy in resource-rich Balochistan. It clearly reflects the human rights crisis in the region. Baloch political activists based in London recently staged a protest outside Pakistan High Commission on Sept. 28 against Pakistani armed forces. MANSOOR BALOCH         President, Baloch Republican Party, UK (Transcription) "It has been highlighting military operations in Balochistan, also killing Baloch people and torturing them and sending their dead bodies to their families. So we are here to protest against Pakistan because it was an illegal occupation of Balochistan in 1948." Representatives of Baloch Republic Party and Baloch National Movement later marched to 10 Downing Street to seek in