Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Daily News Mail

Indian coal workers on strike against privatisation of coal mining

  • Indian coal workers went on strike of unprecedented(never done or known before;unheard of;unknown;revolutionary;ground-breaking;pioneering) nature to protest privatisation of coal mining. The five day strike primarily to oppose the promulgation of coal ordinance by the Centre. 
  • The proposed ordinance of October, 2014 were e-auction of coal block and 10% disinvestment in Coal India Limited, which is expected to fetch the exchequer about  Rs 23000 crore.
  • The ordinance has inserted a section in the Coal Mines Nationalisation Act of 1973, according to which government and  private companies "may carry on coal mining operations in India, in any form either for own consumption , sale or for any other purpose, in accordance with the prospecting license or mining lease, as the case may be - paving the way to end to CIL's monopoly. Hence according to the ordinance, the private players can mine and sell coal.
  • AITUC general secretary, Gurudas Dasgupta has said privatisation of coal mining will lead to illegal mining, underpayment of workers and misrepresentation of actual production of coal to avoid taxes.
  • The AITUC, the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh(BMS) - affiliated to the BJP, the Indian National Trade Union Congress, the Centre of Indian Trade Unions and the Hind Mazdoor Sangh are participating in the strike.

Political crisis in Bangladesh

  • Controversy started again between ruling Sheikh Hasina's Awami League and Khaleda Zia's Bangladesh Nationalist Party over the disputed election on 5 January, 2014 that returned Sheikh Hasina to office for a second term. The opposition demands for fresh election under non-partisan technocratic administration and refuses to accept the mandate of the election that it boycotted.
  • When BNP leader Khaleda Zia announced a rally to observe the first anniversary of "Death of Democracy Day", the Sheikh Hasina government, which was planning a "Victory day of Democracy" responded by disallowing the protest and locking up the BNP leader in her office. Clashes between have claimed 4 lives. the government has now threatened to charge murder case on Ms. Zia, which could lead her to arrest.
  •  The root of the confrontation are unsettled questions from Bangladesh's violent liberation in 1971, including who was on the Pakistan side at the time of movement for liberation. Awami League has set up war tribunals that sentenced death to several senior leaders of Jamaat-e-Islami(It is the largest Islamic party in Bangladesh which has been declared illegal organisation by the Bangladesh Supreme Court in 2013. It wants to expel minorities from the country and reunify Banladesh with pakistan) and life terms to others including BNP leaders, has proved particularly(extremely; to a higher degree than is usual or average) divisive(tending to cause disagreement or hostility between people).
  • Despite the hartals and protests, Bangladesh economy has shown good performance with 6.1% estimated growth this fiscal year.

Indian economy first quarter growth - 5.7% of GDP

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