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    Archived pages: 203 . Archive date: 2013-12.

  • Title: C-NES Newsletter (January – March 2012)  : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: C-NES Newsletter (January March 2012).. | April 22, 2012 |.. By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 17).. C-NES Newsletter.. (For the quarter January – March 2012).. Editorial.. My dear friends and colleagues: Twelve years ago, on a cold January day in New Delhi, my CA, Praveen Jain, and I, having received the support and signatures of a Board of Trustees, headed by the distinguished economist and institution-builder, Dr.. VA Pai Panandiker, for the creation of a Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research, got the formal legal registration of C-NES.. What a long time ago it seems!.. It was just yesterday – when with hardly any staff, few funds and no offices but the goodwill, cooperation and support of our Trust members and Advisory Council, we began our work.. For nearly a year, we functioned out of a small room near my home in Delhi provided to us by Swaminathan Aiyar, the editor and economist.. Then, slowly projects, partnerships, plans, programs and people as well as funds started trickling in.. We moved to our first modest office in Delhi while in Guwahati, the Rashtriya Grameen Vikas Nidhi, then headed by Dr.. Mahfuza Rahman, agreed to provide us space as our first permanent staffer, Sanjay Sharma, joined in the North-east.. Today, we have an office in Delhi and a regional one in Guwahati with 15 smaller offices for our flagship programme, the Boat Clinics of the Brahmaputra; our work encompasses and enhances the opportunities for health care of the poorest and most vulnerable and marginalized of the saporis – and it goes beyond that with the community radio station which has been established at Maijan Ghat and which I think is one of the most exciting developments in our work over the past decade, education for children on the islands, solar power and veterinary care outreach to name just a few.. And these initiatives are focused on the socially and geographically excluded, the populations which have lived for generations on the islands of the river, and have been outside the reach of government programmes and private philanthropy.. From a team of three, we are nearly 300 today.. From a tiny budget, we have grown extensively.. And from the 12,000 island residents in Dibrugarh’s saporis that we first covered, we now have reached over 700,000, or about 25 percent of the total island population of Assam in 13 districts.. These are significant milestones and we shall go further.. Of course, we have other programmes – a whole range of them:.. Environment.. Our environmental work on protecting the highly endangered river dolphins (xihus) which became the State Aquatic Animal in 2008 directly as a result of our advocacy.. Indeed, what was truly satisfying was the transformation of the poachers who became conservationists as a result of their inclusion in the programme.. Our partners continue to work in the field of dolphin conservation adding the focus of livelihoods and tourism (eco-tourism).. A study of vehicular air pollution in Shillong (Meghalaya) and Guwahati (Assam) and its recommendations which have been shared with media and policy makers.. Media.. We have organized a number of fellowships and workshops for media practitioners, including awards funded by the UNHCR.. We produce the North East File which functions as a quarterly compilation of news of significance for the region and its neighbourhood for subscribers in the region and outside, including diplomatic missions (I would urge all to press for more subscribers!).. The print and visual media have been a consistent support by giving extensive and detailed reportage of our programmes, long-term work and carrying our views and concerns.. Today, we have our own Community Radio Station in Dibrugarh which is expected to start broadcasting later this year.. Indeed, senior figures of the media are also prominent members of the Board of Trustees (Ms.. Patricia Mukhim, editor of the Shillong Times) and Advisory Council (Mr.. Arnab Goswami of Times Now, Mr.. Pradip Phanjoubam of the Imphal Free Press, Mr.. BG Verghese, the acclaimed scholar-editor-author, and Mr.. Sanjeev Majpuria, editor of Whispers in the Corridor).. In addition, we have made two films, one on the river dolphins (Children of the River: the xihus of Assam) directed by Mr.. Maulee Senapati, and the second one was ‘A Measure of Impunity’ on the impact of conflict on women in the states of Nagaland and Assam.. These have been widely appreciated and screened at film festivals and at public events.. Maulee and I will be collaborating on a new set of short documentaries on health this year.. In addition, I write columns regularly for the Sunday Guardian (www.. sunday-guardian.. com) and the Assam Tribune.. Governance and Conflict Understanding.. Since our very inception, C-NES has worked at different levels to help various civil society groups from the states of our region to better understand each other’s perceptions and concerns.. We are privileged to have such stalwarts of the democratic movements in our Trust such as Niketu Iralu of Nagaland and Ms.. Patricia Mukhim, Mr.. Chaman Lal, Lt.. -Gen.. VK Nayar as well as, in our Advisory Council, Devaki Jain, Mr.. Verghese and Dr Sandi Syiem.. They are, in addition, warm and wonderful friends, who have stood by me and all of us in difficult days and times.. Our work on conflict is tempered by the sensitivity and concern of colleagues such as Preeti Gill, editor of Zubaan, the feminist publisher, and our teams in Nagaland and Assam who have help put together an extraordinarily powerful and moving document in ‘Bearing Witness: the impact of conflict on women’ in the two states, the film by Maulee and the exhibition by Kausiki Sarma.. Unless the voices of the most vulnerable reach the most powerful, how can we bridge the caps in our ‘democracy’?.. We visualized, designed and developed the Vision 2020 Peoples Document of the North Eastern Council, through a rigorous and challenging exercise which drew together 20 partner groups and 120 members to conduct surveys, workshops and analysis of what people ‘wanted’ in a Vision Document – that has formed part of the final report released by the Prime Minister in 2008.. It was perhaps the biggest survey conducted in the region, covering 40,000 households in eight states.. Parts of it are being implemented by the Centre and various states – but clearly not enough is being done to ensure truly inclusive growth.. The gaps remain visible and are far too extensive.. I have been privileged to be a member of various major official Committees to review Government policy – these have included the Committee to Review the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, the Advisory Council of the National Disaster Management Board, the Planning Commission’s Task Force on Development of Himalayan Hill Regions, the Commission to Review the Working of the Constitution and earlier the first National Security Advisory Board.. I was most recently on the Planning Commission’s National Steering Committee on Health to mandate and prioritize the focus areas for the 12th Five Year Plan.. At every forum, I have sought to bring C-NES’ focus and priorities to bear on the discussions and decisions, sensitizing national policy to regional concerns.. In addition, I also am a member of the Executive Board of the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, the Governing Board of the Society for Development Communications which publishes the pioneering and bold environmental magazine Down to Earth and most recently of the Population Foundation of India’s Advisory Council.. We also have conducted an international study for the Institute of Developing Economies of Japan on trade prospects between the NER and its neighbours.. We did a detailed study on a similar topic for the Ministry of Commerce, Govt.. of India.. , some of whose recommendations are now part of official policy.. ‘Towards a Greater Asia’, designing the architecture for a New Asia, with a focus on the NER, was a report which resulted out of the visit of Dr.. Surin Pistuwan, then an Opposition lawmaker in Thailand and currently Secretary-General of ASEAN, who led a team of scholars from South East Asia to the NE.. Research and Institutions.. I direct the Centre for NE Studies at Jamia Millia Islamia in New Delhi, a position that takes up time, energy and focus as we design and develop a major research and documentation institution which will bridge the intellectual gaps, address and shape policy imperatives and drive key research on a wide range of subjects.. The University and its leadership has been an enduring source of support to our work.. Partners.. C-NES’ partners represent a diverse and expanding base for projects, priorities and philanthropy.. They include international funders and institutions such as UNICEF, the Freidrich Ebert and Heinrich Boll Foundations of Germany, the Ford Foundation, Irish Aid, domestic support from the Sir Dorabji Tata Trust (which backed our very first project on livelihoods by the Brahmaputra), the Planning Commission (Govt.. of India), well as the National Rural Health Mission, Government of Assam.. There are others which cover a growing interest such as solar energy and research.. But funds remain a challenge which we need to meet.. Logo.. As you may have noticed, we have developed a new logo to represent our ideals and the amazing complexity of our region: the rich yellow and green Bodo weaves on fabric that are vibrant with colour and fabric and synergize hope and opportunity.. Trust and AC:.. I am delighted to inform you of the expansion of the Board of Trustees to include the following distinguished figures in public service and publishing: Mr.. GK Pillai, former Union Home Secretary, Mr.. MP Bezbaruah, former Tourism Secretary, and Ms.. Preeti Gill, editor of Zubaan.. With regret, we have accepted the resignations of Ms.. Mrinal Pande, editor and writer, and Lt.. VK Nayar, former Governor of Manipur and Nagaland.. We deeply appreciate the support of the latter and are sure it will remain with us in the years to come.. Dr.. Milan Baruah, friend, adviser and deeply committed health care giver to the urban underprivileged, has agreed to join our Advisory Council.. The presence of the new Trustees and Dr.. Baruah in the AC will enrich our work and give it depth, inner strength and greater purpose.. New CEO:.. And finally the news that all of you are aware of but which I have held back from formally announcing: Dr.. Dipankar Das, distinguished epidemiologist who has worked extensively and with great intensity at the state, regional, national and international levels – but who remains deeply committed to his homeland of the NER – will be joining C-NES as its CEO (NE) with special focus on health and other connected programmes from Feb.. 1, 2012.. These include the Hospital Ship which is being funded by the North Eastern Council.. As far as my own role is concerned, I shall be on a process of rediscovery! I believe it will continue to be in the fields of visioning C-NES’ growth in new areas and sectors, looking at a greater regional and international role in these fields as well as striking strategic partnerships.. I hope to also look at the research and documentation aspects of our work and how I can best help the team on this crucial front.. Films and media networking will continue to be part of this aspect.. Fund raising will be another major focus as will be a look at rural innovation and growth, using the enormous experience of the past decade and more that all of you have brought to bear.. In the words of the greatest Assamese of many centuries and one of the greatest human beings it has been my privilege to know:.. Xagor Xongomot.. Koto Na xatiurilu.. Kintu hua nai klanto.. With good wishes and with deep appreciation for all that you do, and for your unstinting support and understanding – to the next years of the adventure and the work we have undertaken.. Sanjoy Hazarika.. Managing Trustee, C-NES.. Solar power at Sarikholia village.. The new year, 2012 started with a regular camp at Dibrugarh’s Sarikholia village attended by the Managing Trustee of C-NES , Sanjoy Hazarika (on 3rd January 2012).. The Dibrugarh Boat Clinic team along with the Managing Trustee met and interacted with the villagers who gave a positive feedback on the health camps, they also appreciated the initiatives of C-NES in bringing electricity to their village through solar lamps.. It may be mentioned that every household has at least one set of solar lamp provided by C-NES through Eco-Solutions, an NGO based at Mumbai at a subsidized rate.. Over 100 such lamps have been distributed.. The Government has also provided solar lamps.. The villagers said that the solar sets are of enormous help to them, helping in their children’s study and education as well as providing recreation to families who are able to watch TVs run by the solar sets.. The daily routine of villagers has undergone a change- earlier they would retire and go to bed early; children could not study after dark.. Now children study till late evening after which they eagerly look forward to watching TV.. Most importantly it has reduced the consumption of kerosene to a great extent and the resultant pollution from the smoke emitted from kerosene lamps which often resulted in respiratory ailments, a common trait observed by the Boat Clinic health team in the area.. Children studying under solar lamps.. A happy family posing in front of their solar.. powered home at Dibrugarh’s Sarikholia village.. Family Planning Initiatives:.. Dhubri Boat Clinic Unit II.. MO Dr Subhamitra Choudhury counseling a beneficiary.. Along with  ...   HBF India visitedthe North East Indian states of Assam, Manipur and Meghalaya from 4th – 15th March 2012.. The visit was in order to gain an insight of the region and visit the organizations project partners on site.. The team also interacted with academics, media and activists and visited C-NES offices in Guwahati and Dibrugarh.. C-NES was involved with the Boll Foundation in conducting a year long study “Impact of conflict on Women” the focus of which was on the suffering and trauma of women at times of conflict and the extent of Post Trauma Stress Syndrome (PTSS) and Post Trauma Stress Disorder (PTSD).. Three districts each, in Assam and Nagaland were selected for the field research.. Sibsagar, Dhemaji and Kokrajhar in Assam and Kohima, Peren and Tuensang in Nagaland.. From Dibrugarh the Boll team was accompanied by the Research team, Mirza Rahman and Ritu Rekha Baruah who had conducted the Boll Foundation supported study released in September 2011.. At Lakili in upper Assam’s Sibsagar district, once a flourishing capital of the Ahom dynasty and culturally rich, where filming and interviews for the study were done, the Boll team interacted with members of the community, most victims of armed conflict.. Each household here has a sufferer.. In the community constructed hall where people got together, staged plays and organized community functions, there was a spontaneous gathering of people, both men and women, in large numbers, to interact with the team and share their feelings of anguish and the ordeals they went through during times of conflicts.. They could do so with ease, having reached a comfort level with the researchers while they were conducting their study here.. Appreciating the community effort in the construction of the hall, Dr Axel also made a personal donation to develop it to villager Pushpa Konwar.. Social activist and an opponent of the local insurgent group, villager Pabitra Phukan who was subsequently blacklisted by that group pointed out the futility of armed struggle while addressing the gathering.. The Boll team with the researchers also visited Bokota village in the same district, this being one of the main areas from where cadres for the insurgent groups were recruited.. The film was screened here a day before the Boll teams visit.. The team interacted with the victims of armed conflict Phulprabha Mohan and the couple- Jogamaya Mohan and Priyaram Mohan.. The Boll team with the researchers at Bokota and Lakili.. CEO chairs session on women health.. Dr Dipankar Das, CEO (centre) speaking at the conference.. Dr Dipankar Das, CEO, C-NES attended the Regional Conference for NE states on convergence for Empowerment of Women at Shillong on 7th-8th February 2012 organized by the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Govt.. Dr Das chaired the session on Women s health and Nutritional issues where the focus of discussion was on preserving nutritive values of locally available vegetables through proper cooking procedure, the essence of the ultimate thrust being on women s education to create awareness on for up keeping health through attitudinal changes.. Dr Das also co-chaired a session on Women s Education: issues and efforts for convergence where the problem of school drop-outs was addressed and a suggestion for combining formal education with informal education at the household levels through a kitchen table cabinet was put forth.. In the open discussion Dr Das raised the good examples of some positive approaches by certain sections of women from NER.. C-NES’ tribute to the Bard of the Brahmaputra.. The India International Centre (IIC) and C-NES brought together singers and musicians from the North East in a musical evening to pay tribute to the legendary Dr.. Bhupen Hazarika, perform some of his repertoire as well as their own compositions on February 18, 2012 at the IIC main auditorium.. Introducing the evening, Sanjoy Hazarika, Managing Trustee of C-NES, spoke of how Dr.. Hazarika’s music transcended the region and South Asia and that this was represented by the three performing groups.. The performers included Mayukh Hazarika, nephew of the great singer, his wife, Laili Dutta-Hazarika, with a team of musicians from Guwahati and Rabindra Kalita, Executive Director Marketing, Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd.. , who is a well-known amateur singer in Assamese.. From Nagaland come the remarkable Nagaland Singing Ambassadors under Lipokmar Tzudir, who have performed across India, singing 19th and 20th century choral compositions.. From Manipur was the ‘father’ of the Naga blues, Rewben Mashangva, who has revived the musical traditions of his Tangkhul community, accompanied by his son, 11 year old Saka.. The program was supported by the OIL India Ltd and the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation and is part of C-NES’ sustained efforts to bring different aspects of the NER, including its cultures, to the knowledge and understanding of larger audiences across the country.. The performance at the India International Centre had been preceded by an open air performance the previous evening to 600 persons, mostly youth and students, at Jamia Millia Islamia, by the Nagaland Singing Ambassadors directed by Lipokmar Tzudir and Rewben and Saka.. That programme was organized by CNES at Jamia which is directed by Sanjoy Hazarika who holds the Saifuddin Kitchlew Chair at the University.. The programme was launched by Mr.. Hazarika and Prof.. Rashid, Pro Vice Chancellor; the performances included dances and music from Manipur, Sikkim and the vigorous Bihu of Assam.. (left ) Mayukh Hazarika, nephew of the great singer, his wife, Laili Dutta(right)-.. Rewben Mashangva, , accompanied by his son, 11 year old Saka performing at the musical evening.. Delivery by Barpeta health team.. A baby boy was delivered on 16th February, 2012 at Barpeta’s Sargaon char under the supervision of the Barpeta Boat Clinic Unit II.. Majeda Khatun informed the health team that a pregnant woman Ramesha Khatun was undergoing labour pain.. The health team went to her as she was unable to come to the camp site and helped her deliver the child, a baby boy.. BCG “0” dose with hepatitis B was given to the baby.. This was the first such experience for the Boat Clinic Unit-2 team.. The Boat Clinic health outreach programme reaches out to the state’s vulnerable population who live on islands on the Brahmaputra with a special focus on women and children, who are the most vulnerable in difficult conditions.. Providing ANC, PNC checkups along with advocating institutional deliveries has been priority with all the health teams especially crucial for a state like Assam which has India’s worst Maternal Mortality rate at 480, higher than Bihar or Uttar Pradesh, and a high Infant Mortality Rate.. There have been nine successful, safe deliveries conducted on the boat clinics till date – Four in Dibrugarh, two in Dhemaji, one in Barpeta, one in Jorhat and this one in Barpeta.. Awareness camp at Lotibari Char.. Asha facilitator Hasina Khatun speaking at the awareness session.. An awareness camp was organized in Lotibari Char, on 5th December 2011 under Lakhipur, BPHC Goalpara.. Hasina Khatun, ASHA Facilitator helped the Boat Clinic team in conducting the session along with Sahinur Islam, pharmacist who briefed the gathering on various issues like health and hygiene, malaria, RI, ANC, PNC check ups and how to prevent oneself from different diseases and the symptoms.. Hasina Khatun, ASHA Facilitator, spoke on Family Planning methods.. DPO Hingulas Khakhalary conducted an interactive question answer session to ensure better understanding on the topics that were dealt with and also spoke about the importance of education for a society to progress.. Annual Review Meeting at Kaziranga.. A two and a half day C-NES Annual Review Meeting was organized at the world famous Kaziranga Wild Life sanctuary in Assam, along the banks of the Brahmaputra in an equally picturesque backdrop- the Wild Grass Resort, Kaziranga from 29th February to 2nd March 2012.. Over 70 C-NES staff comprising of Medical Officers, District Programme Officers, from the 15 Boat Clinic Units along with the organizations education, family planning, community radio team and members from the Regional Office, Guwahati attended the Meeting led by the Managing Trustee, Mr.. Sanjoy Hazarika and the newly appointed CEO of C-NES, Dr Dipankar Das.. Eminent Trustees of the organization including Dr VA Pai Panandiker, Chairman, Board of Trustees, Dr Jayanta Madhab, Economist Mr GK Pillai, former Union Home Secretary, Mr MP Bezbaruah, former Union Tourism Secretary, Ms Preeti Gill, editor, Zubaan and Mr Niketu Iralu, social activist from Nagaland were present.. The resource persons for the Meeting included Ms Jeroo Master, Chief, Field Office and Dr PN Borah, State Progarmme Manager, NRHM, Assam.. “Time has come for the people of the North East to take things in your hand’ said Mr Pillai, delivering the special address on “Perspective of the region and India: views and vision from Delhi “ at the meet adding further that the region must learn to “solve its own problem and not expect Delhi to come and solve it”.. People have to decide for themselves, he said and that the 10% allocation the region is entitled to now will not last for too long.. People from the region therefore, should keep pace and take advantages as they come, as global citizens.. People from the North east are already making a name for themselves in the rest of the Indian cities, more so in the hospitality sector.. He said that issue such as misgovernance in the grass root level common in the region was because at the lowest level there are not to many trainings conducted to train people.. Trainings for Block Development officers, clerks, constables are vital in order to make them more responsive on the field.. “I cannot imagine an India without North East India” he concluded revealing his obvious fondness for the region.. Earlier the welcome address was delivered by Dr Das and the introductory session saw the Trustees being felicitated with colorful ethnic.. gamochas (.. towels) and wooden rhinos as mementoes- the latter symbolic of the meeting venue at Kaziranga which is famous for its one horned rhino.. The opening remarks where made by the Managing Trustee, Mr Hazarika who said that he was happy to have everyone together “I think of how we stated 12 years ago and how slowly over the years we have worked in different fields.. We had a staff of 4 then, now we are over 250, from one district (Dibrugarh) we are now in 13 districts.. We have to be clear that our goal and mission is constantly to reach the poor and unreached.. We have to keep our minds open- to each other and to the issues around us”, adding further that “You should think of yourself as extremely privileged as people with a special calling, to served the needy and the unreached”.. Speaking on the occasion Chairman Board of Trustees Dr Pai Panandiker said that he considered HEE- Health, Education and Employment as most important for any development.. “If we do not have all the three, no individual or family can grow” he said.. He asked the C-NES team to contribute in their own area in their own way in the lives of children and women.. “We as Trustees will ensure that you will get all possible help.. Make sure that every penny you spend is equal to quality of health.. Our main effort should be to enable you to have every capability to be able to offer the best you have to the people you serve” Trustees Dr Madhab, Mr Bezbaruah, Ms Preeti Gill and Mr Iralu also appreciated the services provided by the C-NES team assuring of all possible support.. Mr Ashok Rao Programme Manager thanked the trustees and the staff for attending the meet.. Soon followed a panel discussion on “What do the people we serve really care about” which saw active participation from all panelists and the participants.. The second day, (1st March) dawned early with an hour long elephant safari for the participants including the Trustees right through the sanctuary to view the one horned rhino, wild buffaloes, hogs, herds of deer and migratory birds.. This was followed by a lively cricket match at the nearby Dhansiri resort with almost everyone joining in.. The afternoon session saw short presentations by the 15 Boat Clinic Units sharing their experiences and challenges moderated by Dr Das.. Presentations were also made by the Education, Family Planning and CRS teams.. The guest lectures was delivered by Ms Jeroo Master from Unicef and Dr PN Borah from NRHM.. After hectic presentations, it was time for some relaxation, with a quiz session with Mr Hazarika as the Quiz Master.. Four Teams were set up.. Questions were a wide range- from current affairs, business, music, books and health compiled by the MT.. This was followed by cultural performances by the C-NES team members.. Melody flowed with good guitar back up by Ashok Rao and Dr Aaron Momin.. The review meeting concluded on 2nd March after a break out session, presentation of accounting procedure by Accounts Manager Faizul Haque and summing up by the MT and the CEO, Dr Dipankar Das.. C-NES team poses with the Trustees at the Review meet at Kaziranga.. Like this:.. Like.. Loading.. Category.. :.. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to receive more just like it.. Subscribe via RSS Feed.. Leave a Reply.. Click here to cancel reply.. Name.. ( required ).. Email.. ( required; will not be published ).. Website.. If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a.. Gravatar.. Notify me of follow-up comments by email.. Notify me of new posts by email.. %d.. bloggers like this:..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra (Vol:16) : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra (Vol:16).. | January 6, 2012 |.. (For the quarter October – December 2011).. China backs off the Brahmaputra.. The Bard can rest peacefully – China backs off the Brahmaputra Bhupen da can rest in peace – at least as far as his beloved Brahmaputra and Lohit are concerned.. That is, if we are to believe the Chinese.. In quick succession, first at Beijing in October and then barely two weeks ago at a conference on River Waters in New Delhi, China has declared that it will not divert the waters of the Yarlung Tsangpo (also known as the Upper Brahmaputra) in Tibet to quench the great thirst in Northern China.. First, the Vice Minister of Water Resources, Jiao Yong, in the Chinese capital on Oct.. 12 and then a senior Chinese hydrologist and scholar at New Delhi on declared in similar language that “technical difficulties, environmental impacts and state relations” were responsible for the decision.. This was a part of its Great Western Diversion Plan and the Water Resources Ministry has opposed major hydro-power projects on the river’s ecologically fragile upper course, as it starts it great journey to the Bay of Bengal.. Chinese state power companies appear unfazed by the declarations: they continue to advertise plans for a huge power plant near the Great Bend of the Namcha Barwa gorge and a clutch of hydro-power companies have wanted to launch 28 dams but these appear uncertain after the official announcements.. The figures are staggering: in its giant drive to slake its great thirst, China has tapped over 3,000 rivers and water courses.. It plans to harness another 2,000 – or a total of 5,000.. The country’s hydro-electric capacity doubled from 100,000 MWs in 2001 by 2010 and now is scheduled to hit 350,000 MW by 2020.. China has tapped already.. half of its existing hydro potential while that is expected to go up to 81 percent by 2020!.. So, before we heave a huge sigh of relief about the Brahmaputra’s future, let’s look at the fine print and see what the Chinese officials actually said: that the technology for such a project does not exist as of the present and the funds required were of too great a.. magnitude (now since when did the latter ever stop Beijing from implementing its gigantic projects and grand designs?).. Which could mean that if they get the right technology and the funds, they could steamroller it through? What is required is a clear and categorical statement, without ifs and buts, from Beijing: that China will not build any dams on the Tsangpo, barring the 510 MW hydropower project at Zangmu.. Zangmu was a small town some years ago when I visited, while filming the river and its people and their cultures.. Flanked on either side by the towering plateau, there is a beautiful bend where the Tsangpo is broad as it froths and skims over unseen rocks, scouring its way through Tibet, catching pace as it rushes toward the Great Bend.. This is the deepest cleft on the face of the earth, home to an extraordinary range of tropical forests and alpine terrain.. It is from there that the great river makes its way, leaping effortlessly over international (and yet disputed) borders, thundering through the valley of the Siang, joining the Seyom and the Lohit as they merge into the Brahmaputra.. And here’s the contradiction: we are opposed to the Chinese building dams on the river – but we are determined to dam every river in Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Assam, not to forget Manipur (Tipaimukh) and Tripura! This surely is an extraordinarily hypocritical way to handle both external affairs and internal issues – if our position is that the Brahmaputra is an international river, then surely it does not cease being so the moment it flows into Indian territory? So, we can harm the Brahmaputra and its great tributaries but want to stop the Chinese from doing so? What kind of logic is that – the impact of the large dams on the Subansiri and the Seyom and Lohit will dramatically affect not just ecology downstream but also the farmlands of Assam and the millions who are dependent on them.. Part of the problem is that India, China and none the countries of South Asia have not signed the 1972 International Convention of River Courses which, without being binding, at least provides an international forum to discuss issues of mutual or regional concern.. All of us prefer the bilateral path which can’t work when there are three or more countries involved – the Brahmaputra flows through China, India and Bangladesh.. China has similar problems with other rivers which have their origins in its Southern belt, near the Himalayas – the Irrawaddy, Mekong and Salween, to name three.. I’ve been lucky to travel on all and they are truly great rivers – but they are also international rivers, flowing through two or more countries.. China has been building dams and various projects on all of them, with few discussions with the downstream riparian.. It has unilaterally, after representatives from the Association of South East Asian Association, made representations and visited several project sites, to cancel one project.. Just one out of several.. Its aggressive unilateral approach has drawn a blunt response from Myanmar, seen as one of its greatest supporters and allies.. Today, Myanmar, eager and hunger for international recognition and assistance and to get out of the Chinese grip on its economy, has replied with unique unilateralism: it has cancelled the largest Chinese dam in Kachin State, citing people’s opposition to the project, displacement issues as well as ecological concerns and that Myanmar stood to gain little since, as in most Chinese power projects in a different country, most of the energy was to be exported to China.. The move has stunned the Chinese, coming as it did from a nation that Beijing had given political, economic and military assistance since the crackdown on the pro-democracy movement in the 1990s.. In the space of a few months, Myanmar is moving fast out of being a pariah state to one which is about to receive the US Secretary of State in the first trip by such a high-ranking American official in half a century.. Myanmar is opening up in an unprecedented manner; in the space of barely six months, it has enabled Aung Sang Suu Kyi, the pro-democracy icon, to embrace a political career with her now-recognized National League for Democracy, released political prisoners and opened fresh air to blow through the country; its neighbors, surprised by its ability to taken on the Chinese and move towards opening up, have rewarded it with the chairmanship of ASEAN, something that would have been inconceivable last year when the UN Rapporteur for Myanmar had delivered a stinging rebuke to its human rights record.. The reason for the Myanmar example is simple: the strength for the resolve to confront China over the dam came from the internal processes of change and freedom that the former generals, who continue to run Burma, had gathered.. A united front on the issue of the use of rivers that flow from Tibet into India’s North East and South East Asia may not be politically possible.. It took nearly a quarter century of negotiations to get the Ganges Water Sharing Treaty with Bangladesh.. But surely it is not impossible to start a dialogue and develop a common platform on basic issues if not an alliance before the Chinese announce another round of water unilateralism.. This is the only realistic and critical approach if we are to protect the water towers and courses of Asia, a continent which receives less fresh water per capita than any other part of the world despite being home to three-fifth of the earth’s population.. Managing Trustee.. (From his regular column in Assam Tribune, 30th November 2011).. Boat Clinics presented at International Conference.. Sanjoy Hazarika, Managing Trustee of C-NES, presented the work of the Boat Clinics in Assam at an international conference in Delhi on Sunday, Nov 20, 2011.. He spoke on ‘Waters of Hope: Health Innovations and Interventions on the Brahmaputra’ at the conference, the final presentation of the final session ‘The Way Forward’ at the Conference: ‘River Waters: Perspectives and Challenges for Asia’ organized by the India International Centre and the Foundation for Non-Violent Alternatives.. Experts from China, Tibet, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan and different parts and institutions of India were presenting, including specialists from IIT Guwahati, Guwahati University.. Other speakers are from the United States, United Kingdom, Sweden, Australia, France and Finland.. Workshop on disaster management.. A meeting of India s top seismologists and earthquake specialists, which discussed issues arising from the Sikkim earthquake, has strongly recommended that northeastern states set up their own state disaster response units instead of being dependent on centralised forces like the National Disaster Response Force.. In addition, the national workshop on Housing, Resilience and Rehabilitation on Nov 11-12 at Jamia Millia Islamia, which saw senior level representation from the governments of five states Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Sikkim suggested several innovative steps such as extensive use of ham radio operators and community radio stations in every district to respond to crisis where normal telecommunications are knocked out, including mobile phone networks.. The father of earthquake engineering technology in the country, AS Arya, and others emphasized the critical need to develop quake resistant technology and use bamboo applications wherever possible.. They said that most urban centres in the northeast faced major disasters in the event of a severe earthquake: retrofitting of existing buildings, especially lifeline buildings such as schools and hospitals was crucial.. Other specialists called for campaigns using SMS and new technology to sensitize and train people to how they could respond to earthquakes.. Another suggestion made was for a community based participatory monitoring system to track the progress, implementation of technical guidelines, grievance redressal on the lines of existing processes in Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Bihar.. Launched on Nov 11 by Jamia Vice Chancellor Najeeb Jung, the programme began with a minute s silence to honour the late Dr.. Bhupen Hazarika and listened to his legendary song, Buku hom hom kore.. The workshop was organized by Sanjoy Hazarika of Jamia s Centre for.. North East Studies under the auspices of its Sikkim Studies Programme with collaboration from the National Centre for Peoples Action and Disaster Preparedness in Ahmedabad of Rajendra and Rupal Desai.. Presentations were made by GC Khanal, joint director, Department of Land Revenue and Disaster Preparedness, Biswajit Sarma, head, Centre for Disaster Preparedness, Assam, TP Khaund, Principal adviser to the Mizoram Chief minister, PP Shrivastav, member, North Eastern Council, Suhel Akhtar, Manipur s principal secretary for disaster preparedness, and Pankaj Jain, government of Meghalaya as well as Jemino Mawthoh of the Department of Continuing Education at NEHU.. Family planning initiatives by Boat Clinic Teams.. Barpeta II.. The regular boat health camp conducted by the Barpeta Boat Clinic- Unit II heath  ...   mentioned that the village needed two more ASHAs and the population of 3200 was difficult for a single ASHA to manage.. They also had an interaction with the members of Village Health and Sanitation Committee (VHSC) which included the AWW, ASHA, Ward Member, School teacher and other general members.. The village Head man was not present as he belonged to the nearby village.. They were asked about the role of the VHSC.. They replied that they have to organise Village health and Sanitation Day every Wednesday and speak to the mothers and the villagers about nutrition to PWs, RI and matters related to development of health of the community.. Dr Rakesh Kumar suggested the AWW to advocate and implement on nutritional supplement to the PWs.. Ashok Rao highlighted on the need for Solar ILR, MOs, and solar lighting on the boats to which Dr Kumar said that he would take this in the district meeting and also at the state level.. On the visitors book Dr Rakesh Kumar wrote that he was most impressed by the efficiency and quality of RCH services being provided by the Boat Clinic “ SB Rustam”.. He further stressed on supplementary nutrition, counselling for family planning services and hygiene issues.. Awareness camp at Bongaigaon.. Along with the routine camp a special awareness camp on immunization and family planning was organized on immunization and family planning at Bongaigaon’s Kabaitary on 24th September, 2011.. The team was accompanied by the BPM (Block Program manager) NRHM and BEE (Block Extension Educator) from Boitamari BPHC as resource persons along with one ASHA facilitator and two ASHA workers from neighboring villages.. The purpose of the camp was to make people understand the importance of vaccination as most community members were reluctant to provide vaccines to their children due to prevailing superstitions and ignorance.. After a brief introduction by the DPO the BPM started the meeting wherein he spoke about the importance of Immunization of the child within 12 months to prevent them falling victim to various diseases.. The BEE imparted education on family planning and the various methods to be adopted by couples which the government has provided free of cost through various health institutions.. The MO appealed to the people to cooperate with the health team and bring the children for timely vaccination of children.. Boat Clinic Task Force Report.. The report of the Task Force on development processes for Himalayan Hill States set up by the Planning Commission, Government of India, and which was handed over to the Planning Commission in December 2010 talks of the importance of the Boat Clinics initiative.. The premier agency mandated to conduct the study was the GB Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development, based near Nainital, Uttarakhand.. The Report of the Task Force can be accessed at.. Planningcommission.. nic.. in/aboutus/taskforce/task_hill1009.. pdf.. Given the repercussions of the major earthquake recently in Sikkim, the report is extremely relevant as it has specific recommendation on many issues including earthquakes in this highly seismic zone, classified as Zone Five or the most vulnerable of all parts of India to tremors.. C-NES Managing Trustee Sanjoy Hazarika was a member of the Task Force.. Awareness camp at Nalbari.. An awareness camp was conduced on RNTCP at Garighat on 10th August, 2011.. RNTCP members from Nalbari Dr.. Kalish Deka (District Programme Officer, Nalbari), Grindhra Chakraborty (BCG Technician, Nalbari), Hiren Kalita ( Labrotory Technician, Nalbari), Mazammil Haque ( STS, Mukalmua), Dipak Barman ( STLS, Mukalmua), Sahabuddin Ahmed ( TB Health Visitor) and Mainul Haque ( LT, Mukalmua) accompanied the team.. ASHA Margina Begum was present.. About 150 people attended the camp.. Leaflets on TB were distributed.. Kalish Deka (DPO, RNTCP) spoke about the symptoms of TB – that if a man suffered from cough for two weeks he must go for examination in DOTs laboratory.. In some cases it may be referred to relevant centres after the investigation of Medical Officer.. The referred cases of Boat Clinic Nalbari must go to the Bhangnamari DOTs centre for investigation.. All categories of investigation were totally free of cost.. If any positive cases came out, DOTs centre gave them 6 to 8 month courses of medicine which was totally free of cost.. He requests all to visit DOTs centre without fail if they suffered continuous cough.. SBI supports C-NES.. Mr A Krishna Kumar, Managing Director, SBI handing over the car keys to Sanjoy Hazarika.. State Bank of India on Monday extended its corporate social responsibility.. arm to C-NES by donating a multi utility vehicle (Mahindra Bolero).. Handing over the vehicle to Mr Sanjoy Hazarika, Managing Trustee, C-NES, at an official function held on 29th November, 2011 at the Banks headquarters in Guwahati, Mr A.. Krishna Kumar, Managing Director , SBI Corporate Centre, Mumbai, present on the occasion along with a number of senior SBI officials, lauded the efforts of the C-nes Boat Clinic health initiatives adding that the Boat Clinics were providing yeoman s service to marginalized river island communities.. Community Radio Station at Dibrugarh.. The freshly recruited community reporters for the CR station.. A new radio station Brahmaputra Community Radio Station (BCRS), on the banks of the Brahmaputra – is being set up by C-NES in collaboration with UNICEF, Assam at Maijan ghat, Dibrugarh as part of an effort to democratized mass media, with reporters and writers from communities of the area.. Community radio across the world is popularly defined as a “radio for the people, of the people and by the people”.. A BCRS stakeholders meeting was organized on November 30th, 2011 at the BSRS office , Dibrugarh.. The meeting which was originally planned to mark inauguration of BCRS and its introduction to scholars, intelligentsia, professionals, business sector, media and government circles of Dibrugarh was quickly converted into a moving memorial meeting and stakeholders discussion, to remember the brilliant contributions of cultural genius and icon Dr Bhupen Hazarika and writer-thinker Jyanpith awardee , Dr Indira Goswami, popularly known as Mamoni Raisom who had expired only the previous day, attended by Unicef Chief Field Office, Assam, Ms Jeroo Master, eminent writer- columnist Sanjoy Hazarika, the Managing Trustee C-NES, academics, members from the local community and BCRS management committee members.. Sanjoy Hazarika speaks at international conference.. Sanjoy Hazarika was invited to speak at the inauguration of an international conference on the North-east followed by the screening of his film, ‘A Measure of Impunity,’ on 15th December 2011 at the University of Göttingen, Germany.. He participated in the workshop titled Performing Identity: Ethnicity and Ethnonationalism in the South-east Asian Borderland region of North-east India to be organised in Göttingen from the 15th to the 17th December 2011.. The workshop was organised by the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology in co-operation with the Centre for Modern Indian Studies.. at the University of Göttingen, and co-ordinated by the Competence Network on ‘Dynamics of Religion in SE Asia’ at the University of Göttingen.. Other prominent speakers are Prof.. Kalyani Club Awards.. The award giving function for the five Best Kalyani Health Clubs in Assam which was held at Doordarshan Kendra Guwahati on 29th November 2011 was telecast on 5th December, 2011.. This is the second award function, the first was held on 25th February 2011 where seven clubs were awarded.. C-NES has been the state representative of Population Foundation of India (PFI), in the PFI Kalyani Doordarshan programme in Assam.. Kalyani, a popular health series in India,.. Awareness session at Goalpara.. The gathering at the awareness session.. An awareness camp was organized at Goalpara’s Kistomoni Char under the Lakhipur BPHC in the village L.. School on 22nd November 2011.. The meeting commenced with electing a president for the program from amongst the community to encourage popular participation in the programme.. An elderly villager Ajahar Ali, an active community member was selected.. A brief introduction to IMR, MMR, (specially critical for a state like Assam which as the highest MMR in the country at 390 per 100000 live births) TFR, FP and prevention of common diseases.. was given by the pharmacist.. The DPO Hingulas Khakhalary conducted a feedback session and spoke about the importance of education and putting children to school since illiteracy is widespread here in the nearly three hour long meeting.. Over 125 people attended the program.. As the program was organized in the school the Boat Clinic team organized games for the school children for their entertainment.. Cleft lips corrected under operation smile.. Before and after the surgery.. The guardian of a two and half year old girl with cleft lip from Sonitpur districts Lanke char was motivated by the districts Boat Clinic health team led by the DPO to get the child operated under the corrective surgery “Operation Smile”.. along with details and objectives of the schemes.. Accordingly the DPO contacted the district administrations and requested help for the child.. The screening test was done in September 2011 at Bihaguri PHC and the child was sent to Guwahati on 9th Oct 11 where she was successfully operated upon.. Capacity Building training for ASHAs and ANMs.. The Ashas and ANMs with Moushumi Borah, DPO Sonitpur, Chandana Bora, State Coordinator for PFI and Bonobithi Das Family Planning counsellor.. A two day capacity building training for 11ASHAs and 2 ANMs of Sonitpur Boat Clinic on family planning and reproductive health was organized by C-NES at Bihoguri BPHC on 14th and 15th December 2011.. The objective of the training was to impart clear concepts on family planning methods involved, effective counselling skills for better community response and to make the participants more confident in community discussions and dealing with challenging topics.. The training was supported by the District Health Society (DSY) Sonitpur including providing resource persons, venue and accommodation for the outstation ASHAs.. At the end of the training the newly recruited ASHAs were provided free uniforms, bicycles and Identity cards by Mr.. Porag Saikia, DPM,Sonitpur and Mr Ruprekha Khatonia, BPM, Bihoguri BPHC.. Training on neonatal care for Medical Officers.. A two day training programme on Nawajaat Shishu Suraksha Karyakaram(NSSK) for C-NES’ Boat Clinic Medical Officers was held on 29th and 30th November 2011 at the District Training Centre of Assam Medical College and Hospital, Dibrugarh.. The training supported by UNICEF, in collaboration with District Health Society and with Dr B Barooah and Dr D Sahu as facilitators, was held to offer basic knowledge of neonatal resuscitation and newborn care to Boat Clinic doctors across 13 districts of Assam.. The basic aim of the programme was to provide essential knowledge to doctors so that they can offer optimum attention to newborns to prevent complication of infection, birth asphyxia, complications related to premature birth and low birth-weight babies thereby reducing infant mortality rate.. Most of the neonatal deaths can be prevented with simple, cost-effective solutions that do not depend on highly trained provider or sophisticated equipment.. Such trainings are crucial for a state like Assam with a high infant mortality rate at 67 per 1000 live births and an equally high maternal mortality rate (390 per 10,00,00)..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 13) : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 13).. | April 9, 2011 |.. (For the quarter January- March 2011).. NE Bandhs and ASEAN:.. Will we make it?.. What do bandhs have in common with ASEAN, the Association of South East Asian Nations, that conglomerate of the energetic nations of SE Asia (although three are LDCs or Least Developed Countries – Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos)? Obviously bandhs and ASEAN don’t go together, although there are some from time to time and Thailand, of course, is disrupted by political agitations frequently.. But, take a look around the other countries, there’s little disruption of their economic surge or commercial production by strikes.. I’m not saying that this is a good or bad thing.. I’m merely intrigued by the gap in understanding among intellectuals, editors, scholars and politicians in India, especially its North-east, who are desperately pushing for connectivity to SE Asia, but are unable to say or do anything about the frequent bandhs which disrupt daily life and the economy in our region, called by students, political parties and even insurgents.. So the question is not as strange as it appears.. There also a gap in credibility, apart from governance.. I write this from Jorhat in Upper Assam, one of the main centres of tea production in the country, which has been shut down all day by a bandh called by journalists to protest an alleged threat to one of their own from the relative of a politician.. There’s another bandh called by the All Assam Tea Tribes Students Association (AATTSA for short).. No businessman or women worth his or her salt will invest in a place where, in addition to the problems of delivery and security, you also have a constant worry that shipments, production and attendance of workers and staff will be disrupted by a sudden strike, however justified.. These are the issues, which as much as anything else – and certainly not big talk will make an impact on ASEAN visitors and shape the pace of our connectivity.. It’s not good enough to hark back to the past but also to show, on the ground, that we have the will to ensure connectivity, not disrupt it.. Last week, the ASEAN show rolled into Delhi, and it was pretty formidable.. Surin Pitsuwan, the ASEAN Secretary-General, and one of the most brilliant intellects of Asia, captured the audience with his powerful inaugural address (he’s a hard act to follow: External Affairs Minister SM Krishna spoke after him and, naturally, as is his wont, put everyone in the room to sleep).. Pitsuwan said that the NE was ‘naturally connected to South East Asia” and noted that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had a seat from Assam.. He was making a political statement – that the connectivity was important also because the country’s top political leader had a constituency there.. That evening, the Thai Foreign Minister was even more elaborate: “The foreign ministers of ASEAN propose a trip by road to Myanmar by road and then to Assam,” so that they could understand the opportunities and challenges in traveling through this region.. This is part of the “evolving architecture” of Asia, where road and rail connectivity will make travel from Vietnam to Turkey or any part of the world in between including Central Asia and Russia – a reality.. But a top engineer tells me that the new Assam highways are about six years behind schedule: i.. e.. we are completing 2005-06 roads this year!.. The contradictions in our approach to South East Asia were visible at the ASEAN-India partner event in Delhi; not a single political leader from the North-east which is the only part of this country with a direct land and historical link with SE Asia, was there.. Agatha Sangma, billed as the “youngest Minister” in the Council of Minister who is Minister for Rural Development, didn’t turn up at her session.. There is another aspect to the new interest in the North-east: it is seen as one of the last “undiscovered” jewels of the world which can be a huge travel destination.. The protection of our environment and natural resources needs to be central to our planning and programme implementation.. This has hardly found space in all the conferences, summits, seminars as well as the vision documents quoted so extensively.. (Published on 13 March 2011 in Sunday Guardian).. Common Review Mission (CRM) team at Dhemaji Boat Clinic.. A Common Review Mission team headed by Dr Kiran Ambwani, Deputy Commissioner, Family Planning, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of India (GoI), Dr Loveleen Johri, Senior Consultant, Reproductive Health, U S Aid, Dr Abhijit Das, Director Centre for Health Social Justice also Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Global Head, University of Washington and Dr Ravinder Kaur, Consultant Maternity Health, MoHFW visited Dhemaji Boat Clinic in December 2010.. Members from the NRHM state team and District Health Society besides Block level health officials under Jonia Block PHC were present.. The Dhemaji Boat Clinic, “SB Shahnaz” was anchored at Mazarbari ghat.. The health team along with Sanjay Sharma, Associate Program Manager, C-NES welcomed the team.. The CRM team boarded the boat and sailed downstream to Churangsiri sapori, a 45 minute journey.. The team attended a health camp at Churangsiri sapori which was held at the LP school premises and interacted with the Village health workers (ASHAs) and the villagers who appreciated the health services provided by the Boat Clinic in their remote areas.. The CRM team on arrival at Mazarbari Ghat.. CRM team interacting with the ASHAs and Villagers.. Common Review Mission team visits Lakhimpur Boat clinic.. A Common Review Mission Team visited the Lakhimpur Boat Clinic to review NRHM health programmes in December 2010.. The eight member team comprised of Dr.. Khanna, National Health Resource Centre (National Institute of Health Family Welfare), Dr.. Partho Jyoty Gogoi, Regional Director, MOH FW, GOI, Guwahati, P.. K.. Abdul Karim, Economist, Ministry of Health, Dr.. C.. Doley, Project Coordinator, GFATM and state, district health and NRHM officials.. Ashok Rao, Programme Manager, C-NES was present with the Lakhimpur Boat Clinic health team.. The team reached Lakhimpur’s Dhunaguri Ghat at 8:40 am and were escorted to the boat.. During the 20 minute boat ride to Aunibari sapori, Dr.. J.. Gogoi enquired about laboratory equipments available.. The medicine supply was looked into.. The district drug store manager was asked to see that boat clinic receives supply regularly.. The nurses were asked about training program they had undergone.. On reaching the camp site, the group interacted with the community and also visited the village.. The villagers informed the team about how the Boat Clinic has been providing regular health services to them which they were earlier deprived of.. Gogoi stressed that there should be a follow up system from the BPHC as it is not possible for boat clinic to return every fortnight.. Khanna commented, “Interaction with the beneficiary has revealed the dire need the Boat Clinic is fulfilling”.. He further added, “Boat Clinic should also advocate preventive education drive in the villages on a sustained basis, to avoid spread of certain infections and epidemics and to take up studies in the area based on the community’s life style, food habits and nutrition to ascertain some of the unidentified and less reported patterns of diseases”.. The CRM team at the camp site.. Medical Officers attending to patients.. PW waiting for ANC check up at the Boat Clinic.. Meeting with Managing Trustee at Shillong.. Managing Trustee (MT) Sanjoy Hazarika met the newly appointed District Programme Officers (DPOs) of the Boat Clinic health outreach programme at a meeting on 7th December 2010 at the conference hall, Shillong Club, Shillong.. The objective of the meeting was to interact with the DPOs of new Boat Clinic Units- to assess their (work) progress, documentation skills, ability to liaison with district administration, District Health Society (DHSs), community mobilization and the challenges they faced.. The Boat Clinic Project has (since August 2010) been up scaled to include three new districts and an additional unit each in two existing districts Goalpara, Bongaigaon and Kamrup are the new districts and existing districts of Dhubri and Barpeta have an additional unit each.. Shortage of medicines and receding water level of the Brahmaputra and the Subansiri (in Lakhimpur) were concerns raised.. The teams in most districts are facing problems of access, having to walk long distances as boats are unable to reach many sites during the winter months which were earlier covered.. A central point where people can gather for the health camps was suggested by the MT for the winter months along with usage of Google Earth for tracking disappearing and reappearing islands Better communication/ coordination with district administration and health department/ ADC (health) was stressed upon by the MT stressed along  ...   on Post Disaster, Owner Driven Reconstruction at Kolkata in January, 2011.. About 40 participants took part in the consultation from the states of Bihar, Gujrat, Orissa, West Bengal, Manipur and Sikkim.. Representatives from Bangladesh and Bhutan were also present.. Boruah raised the pertinent issues of floods, erosion, displacement and disaster management in Assam at the Consultation.. Stories of Hope.. A baby boy was delivered on 13.. February, 2011 at Ghuria sapori in Assam’s Jorhat district, under the supervision of Dr Aaron Momin and Dr Debadip Dey, Medical Officers of the Jorhat Boat Clinic.. There have been eight successful, safe deliveries conducted on the boat clinics till date Four in Dibrugarh, two in Dhemaji, one in Barpeta and this latest one in Jorhat.. A regular patient from Jorhat’s Ghuria sapori, Chandra Hazarika, had suffered a stroke and was paralytic from the past five months.. He was under the observation and care of the health team and his condition has gradually improved.. Initially he would come supported by his wife and son to the camp, but in January 2011 he was able to come walking unescorted.. It was a great achievement for the health team, more so the doctors who were able to improve his condition and build his confidence.. The patient Chandra Hazarika attending a health camp accompanied by his wife.. RI training at AMCH.. A Routine Immunization (RI) training for Boat Clinic Medical Officers and nurses was held at the Assam Medical College and Hospital (AMCH), Dibrugarh in March 2011.. 16 Medical Officers and 14 Nurses attended the training.. The Joint Director, Health Dibrugarh inaugurated the training and advised the doctors to work sincerely and meet the health needs of the char/sapori communities and to apply the training received to practice.. Dr Tulika Goswami Mahanta, coordinating the training from AMCH mentioned that such refresher trainings for MOs and Nurses are important because new protocols are brought in the health sector regularly.. Sanjay Sharma, Associate Program Manager and Amrit Kumar Bora, District Program Officer, Dibrugarh were present at the inaugural training.. Mr Sharma thanked the Joint Director of Health Services for continuous support to the Boat Clinic programme since 2005 and requested the MOs to utilize the learnings from the training in the field after they return.. The Nurses attended both the RI and Neonatal Resuscitations Training (NRT).. Family Planning.. Regular awareness sessions are conducted by the health teams.. Awareness campaigns on health and hygiene, family planning, safe drinking water and sanitation are organized where people are asked to adopt family planning methods in order to control their large family and to avail of family planning devices available with the boat clinic.. Oral Contraceptive Pills and Pills are regularly distributed by the Boat Clinic teams in all districts.. After regular counseling by the DPO and the family planning counselor at Dhemaji 18 women of child bearing age underwent Laparoscopic Surgery at Jonai Block PHC.. 10 were from Boria sapori,2 are from Koilawali sapori, 2 are from Kobu Bazar sapori, 2 from Kobu Nepali sapori , 1 from Birbal sapori and 1 from Bera sapori.. Bongaiaon.. A Field worker, family planning, NRHM accompanied the Bongaigaon health team at the health camp at Chatpara NC in January 2011.. The DPO and the Field worker held Focused group discussion (FGD) with the eligible couples on family planning.. 4 persons were successfully motivated to go for Laparoscopy and NSV.. Health Awareness Camps.. Along with providing basic health services with a focus on mother and child and the elderly and sick, the boat clinic health initiative also works towards creating awareness amongst a largely ignorant population on basic health issues and the need to adopt and promote family planning measures.. Barpeta.. An awareness programme was organized at Patakata-II char village in February 2011.. The community was informed earlier and the camp was held at Patakata L.. School where the DPO spoke about C-NES and the Boat Clinic health initiative with NRHM support whose main goal of was to reduce IMR, MMR and TFR.. In the char area, population explosion is a major problem so people were asked to adopt family planning methods and control large family sizes and that Family Planning devices were available with the boat clinic.. Gunajit Deka, MO, Boat Clinic, explained about various childhood diseases and care to be taken during pregnancy.. He also explained about IMR, MMR with contemporary data.. People expressed their happiness with the services of the Boat Clinic.. Morigaon.. A similar awareness camp was held at the EGS centre premises at Morigaon’s Rongrai-I Char in December 2010.. People were informed earlier about the camp by the community worker and ASHA.. People from the nearby Rongrai-II char also attended the camp.. Along with imparting general awareness on health issues like importance of immunization, ante-natal, post-natal care, exclusive breast feeding, family planning, sanitation and personal hygiene, sports events for children was also organized.. Video clippings on Breast Feeding, Family Planning, Immunization, Malaria, Polio was shown The meeting was also addressed by Mallika Medhi, Executive Director of NRHM, Assam, who urged the people to take the services of Boat Clinic and to provide a helping hand to the health team smooth running of the camps.. Case Study: Cleft Lip and corrective surgery.. Name of the child: Saha Alam Age: 4 month Sex: Male.. Vill: Kheluapara pt I (east).. After detecting the deformity in the child in the previous camp in December 2010, the MO and the DPO had informed the District Community Mobilizer (DCM), NRHM, about the case.. The DCM took the initiative and informed the District Media Expert (DME), NRHM for necessary action.. The child was subsequently taken to Mohendra Mohan Choudhary (MMC) hospital, Guwahati by the DCM along with another 14 children from the char areas.. They were successfully operated upon on their second visit in December by the Operation Smile Cleft Mission team at the hospital.. In the follow up camp by the Boat clinic, the child’s mother expressed her happiness over the initiative taken by the Bongaigaon Boat Clinic team.. Before the operation.. After the operation.. Film screening at Bongaigaon’s Usunger char.. For the first time the Bongaiaoan Boat Clinc team which started conducting health camps from September 2010 , screened short educational, informative films on hand washing, education for the girl child and Diarrhea at Usungar char (west) in March 2011.. Usungar char under Boitamari BPHC, situated south of Boitamari BPHC is about 30 kms from the BPHC.. The char, west of the mighty Brahmaputra is sandy and bare with a population of about 250 people, all fisherman and daily wage earners.. The people are mostly illiterate.. The nearest health centre is Majeralga S/C and Kachudola at the distance of 8-15 kms respectively from the char, on the north bank of the Brahmaputra.. After the routine health check ups, people went inside the Boat Clinic cabin where the films were to be shown.. Around 30 people were present.. The response was good.. People watched silently with interest and replied to post screening questionnaire which showed that they understood whatever they saw.. The CW and ASHA facilitator also explained the same with the help of colorful posters.. Among the audience an EGS school teacher of the char said that the people of the char are illiterate and therefore superstitious and it becomes difficult to change their behavior and beliefs through words.. The informative films being shown inside the Baot Clinic, watched attentively by the gathering.. Seminars at Jamia.. A national seminar was held on Little known fighters against theRaj: figures from Meghalaya in New Delhi in March 2011 at Jamia Millia Islamia, organized by the Saifuddin Kitchlew chair and Centre for NE studies there.. Speakers included Prof David Syiemlieh, Pro-Vice Chancellor of North East Hill University, Prof L Gassah, Dean of Social Sciences, NEHU, Prof Imdad Hussain, historian, and Ms.. Patricia.. Mukhim, C-NES trustee and editor, Shillong Times.. The event was organized by Sanjoy Hazarika, who holds the Kitchlew Chair and runs the NE Centre at Jamia apart from heading C-NES.. This is an effort to bring specific issues of the NE such as the unknown histories of the peoples of the region to the understanding of scholars and policy makers in New Delhi and also weave them into curriculae.. The history of the region,s participation in struggles against the British Raj as well as in the freedom movement are not known.. The second Annual Saifuddin Kitchelew Lecture was delivered by Prof.. Rajmohan Gandhi, Research Professor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Campaign on ‘Enhancing Security: Lessons of History and Geography in January 2011.. The session was chaired by Dr Sayeda.. S.. Hameed,Member, Planning Commission , the opening remarks were by Mr Najeeb Jung,IAS, Vice -Chancellor,Jamia Millia Islamia and the speakers were introduced by Sanjoy Hazarika, Saifuddin Kitchlew Chair.. ,..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 11) : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 11).. | October 17, 2010 |.. C-NES Newsletter (For the quarter July Sep 2010).. Mainland Discourse: The media ignores basic facts about the Northeast, J K in its insurgency chatter.. Across India, there is a bonding of searing pain, especially in its northern and eastern peripheries.. The hurt and tumult envelops families and communities in a shroud of despair, whether it is in the Northeast, Jammu and Kashmir or earlier in Punjab.. It has its roots in a political definition articulated by regional non-state groups (armed and civil society) that posits ‘mainland’ India as the ‘other’.. The political challenge to the state, backed by armed revolt, has not been crushed despite deploying the army and paramilitary forces for over 50 years in the Northeast, and in Kashmir for over two decades.. It appears to have been successful in Punjab but at an unacceptable cost.. India truly has been at war with itself—locked with adversaries who have refused to blink or budge for the most part—but that appears to be changing.. This is different from the groundswell of anger which has spread in central India as well as parts of Maharashtra, Orissa and Andhra Pradesh.. The Maoist campaign has grown from an acute frustration at the lack of delivery on promises, from bad government and governance, from the system’s failure to provide basic health, education and livelihood opportunities 63 years after independence.. The focus here is more on inequity and ineptitude of the state than on sovereignty.. It should be clearly recognised that the politics of J K and the Northeast have little or nothing to do with issues of underdevelopment that drive the Maoist agenda.. The country’s media misses and messes this up time after time because they don’t have a memory of even contemporary history, forget what happened a century ago.. It could be argued though that poor basic services and slothful, insensitive and corrupt administration have aggravated the political crisis both in the Northeast and Kashmir.. This is often where the media fails to make the connection—insurgency and bad governance are part of the same coin, the same story—and often misses the point that lack of services exacerbates alienation.. These are the kind of stories that must be leadership-driven, by editors of vision and perspective.. For that, you need the kind of determined editors represented by the ilk of B.. G.. Verghese and P.. Sainath.. There aren’t many of them around.. The challenge in the Northeast—once India’s primary security threat—has abated in the past decades.. On the ground, group after group, tired of unrelenting security pressure and living on the run, have opted for a cessation of hostilities or opened negotiations.. The earlier power and romance when they even enjoyed some popular support is truly a thing of the past.. Corruption has seeped into the core of their existence, a condition rarely reflected by the media.. This is not to discount their capacity to re-emerge because of the Indian state’s ineptness and failure to take political advantage of favourable conditions.. Few in the media reflect on this at any depth, for want of space, time or interest or all three.. In the line of fire Media persons rush for cover during an encounter in Srinagar, April 2005.. ((AFP, From Outlook Magazine Nov 01, 2010 Issue).. On the other side, the men in uniform and government officials wonder why the media focuses on them and not the ‘anti-national activities’ of those opposed to the idea of India.. Amid this, the changing nature of conflicts is overlooked.. There seems to be a tacit understanding within groups and civil society that an agreement assuring great political power within the Indian Union is better than no agreement i.. a constitutional settlement, which till recently was anathema.. But the media, especially television, with its desperation for trp ratings (which for the most part are fudged anyway), is totally inconsistent and uncommitted to following up such issues in a sustained manner.. Instead, it gives the impression of being a bull in a china shop with noisy, celebrity anchors and breathless reporters.. Thus, whenever the media raises the draconian Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), which empowers soldiers to kill on suspicion and still not be prosecuted for murder, the discourse often focuses on an individual or the most visible sights of protest in Manipur.. These discussions and the articles should have taken place and been written over the years.. Too much is taken for granted: the metro media has made the mistake of focusing primarily on AFSPA as in Kashmir, forgetting that the act has been in place in the Northeast for over 50 years and that for most part of the decades where other parts of India had awoken “to light and freedom”, people in this region were being shaken by midnight knocks, destruction of homes, granaries and villages.. Even basic facts are not stressed—for instance, in areas of maximum unrest in Kashmir, it is not the army that’s been deployed but the state police backed by central paramilitary forces.. Indeed, our focus is limited; our viagra is the immediate, not the consequences or the sustainability of the story.. Yet, in the Northeast, the media’s fractured credibility would still be higher than the government or underground organisations.. The reason for this is simple.. Time and again, especially in Manipur and Assam, journalists have been the target of arbitrary killing and intimidation by armed non-state groups for their courage in speaking, writing and representing the truth.. As far as the state is concerned, what it seeks to hide is extensive and devious—whether it is the atrocities committed under AFSPA or other legislation.. Its credibility or otherwise is not helped, for example, when a group of reporters in Assam band together to write a stunning expose of the secret killings of relatives of ULFA members during the regime of Prafulla Mahanta.. That’s why while AFSPA must go, it represents just one challenge.. This law reflects impunity, built into the system and mindsets of those who rule, and we have been inept at covering both.. Unless we understand that, we’ll get the story wrong and keep talking about street fights when the battles are elsewhere.. It could be argued though that poor basic services and slothful, insensitive and corrupt administration have aggravated the political crisis both in the Northeast and Kashmir.. That’s why while AFSPA must go, it represents just one challenge.. Published in Outlook Mazgazine (.. http://www.. outlookindia.. com/article.. aspx?267562.. ).. Review Visit by Trustee.. The Tinsukia health team interacting with Trustee Mr Chaman Lal on board Boat Clinic SB Swaminathan at Guijan Ghat, Tinsukia.. C-NES Trustee, Chaman Lal (former Special Rapporteur at the National Human Rights Commission and former DGP, Nagaland) reviewed the functioning of the Boat Clinics in July 2010.. Lal made a similar visit in December 2009 where he visited all 10 Boat Clinics.. He met with all the district health teams.. The visit to Barpeta scheduled for 21 July was cancelled under advice of the district administration in the wake of the serious law and order situation arising from Police firing on NRC protesters.. The Trustee assessed the performance of the C-NES units on the ground and took stock of their constraints and difficulties.. He interacted at length with the boat clinic staff, local community members, district authorities and NRHM officials including Dr.. J.. B.. Ekka, Mission Director, NRHM at Guwahati and apprised him of his assessment of the functioning of Boat Clinics.. Mr Lal stressed on the need for special attention to the quality aspect of services, ensuring cent percent coverage of Ante and Post Natal Check ups and full immunizations.. The review followed the broad objectives of the programme spelt out in the MOU signed by the C-NES with NRHM.. C-NES participation at conference on sanitation.. Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dixit at the inaugural session of the conference.. Manik Boruah, Assistant Programme Manager, C-NES attended the national level conference on ‘Cost Effective Sustainable Sanitation” at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi in June 2010.. The conference was organized by the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Institute (WASH) in collaboration with Ministry of Rural Development, Plan India, UNICEF, Water Aid and Water for People (WEF).. Manik Boruah at the exhibition held as part of the sanitation conference..  ...   Hazarika, Saifuddin Kitchlew Chair at JMI, also addressed the seminar held at the Mir Anis Hall JMI.. The Centre at Jamia, the first of its kind in any central University, is to be developed as Think Tank on the North-East.. The Centre draws upon the expertise that C- NES already has in the field of research, on issues of connectivity of the North-East with other regions of South East Asia, migration, demographics, women in conflict situations, participatory planning and governance.. PFI Workshop on Inter Personal Communication (IPC).. Sona Sharma, Joint Director, PFI, New Delhi speaking at the workshop.. A four day workshop (24 to 27 August 2010) on IPC was organized at Guwahati as part of the PFI project.. The five District Counsellors for the project, Priyamjyoti Phukon (Lakhimpur), Rhitiz Gogoi (Tinsukia), Ridip Bordoloi (Sonitpur), Jugananda Dutta (Dibrugarh) and Deva Kakaty (Dhemaji) of the targeted districts were present at the workshop with Chandana Borah, State Advocacy Family Planning Coordinator.. The DPOs of the respective Boat Clinic districts- Amrit Kumar Borah, (Dibrugarh), Dulu Buragohain.. (Dhemaji) Arup Saikia (Tinsukia), Tapon Borah(Lakhimpur) and Mousumi Duwarah.. (Sonitpur) also attended.. The PFI team from Delhi who facilitated the programme.. included Sona Sharma, Joint Director, Lopamudra Pal, Research Associate and Nidhi Vats, Programme Associate Sona Sharma broadly discussed Communication process and IPCC.. Mock sessions were conducted amongst the participants as part of IPCC.. Lopamudra Paul demonstrated the procedure of filling up MIS forms using sample formats.. Questionnaires were to be filled during the subsequent field visit.. On 26th August 2010, a field visit was undertaken to the Balsidhi sub centre under Chaigaon PHC.. The participants visited the community (door to door visits were made) and filled up the MIS formats.. Lopamudra Paul and Nidhi Vats analyzed the formats and gave necessary suggestions.. Participants at the mock session conducted as part of IPCC at the workshop.. Participants on the field visit to Balsidhi sub centre under Chaigaon PHC.. Awareness campaign on family planning.. Dr Warish interacting with the local community at Bootmari char.. C-NES’ family planning counsellors in the PFI-CNES project intervention districts of Assam have motivated women with regard to family planning.. In all districts, the counsellors are actively supported by the community workers and the health team.. After continuous awareness sessions undertaken by the health teams and FP counsellors , people are coming forward to adopt family planning measures.. Sonitpur district has been the only exception where traditional religious beliefs and superstitions pose as impediments.. To overcome these challenges an intensive awareness programme was organized in July 2010 in Sonitpur’s Sandhyar and Bootmari char under Dr.. Abdul Warish, senior medical officer of the Dhubri Boat Clinic.. Dr Warish had a detailed interaction with the local community and appealed to them to accept family planning for a better future, clearing much of their misconceptions.. As a result a section of people from this district have shown interest in adopting family planning.. Subsequently in August 2010, five women were sterilized.. The beneficiaries with the FP counselor, Ridip Bordoloi.. Sterilization camp.. Supported by the Nagaon District Health Society, C-NES organized a sterilization camp on August 8, 2010 at Dhing’s First Referral Unit (FRU) under the initiative of Dr.. Brajen Borah, Medical Officer of the unit.. 8 beneficiaries from Sonitpur (Durura mari and Batuli char) were brought by the Sonitpur Family Planning Counsellor, Ridip Bordoloi and Community worker, Md Yusuf for the operation.. Afsiya Begum, Anganwadi worker from Dururamari Char helped the FP Counsellor and Community worker in motivating the beneficiaries.. After conducting the mandatory pregnancy test before the operation, three of the eight women were found pregnant.. The remaining five were successfully sterilized.. Unicef team at Sapori schools.. Urmila Sarkar (in blue), Chief, Education, UNICEF India and Deepa Das (in grey), Education Officer , UNICEF, Assam office on way to the feeder school at Lowkiwali sapori in Dibrugarh district accompanied by Associate Programme M anager, C-NES Sanjay Sharma.. A UNICEF team comprising of Urmila Sarkar, Chief, Education, UNICEF India, Deepa Das, Education Officer and Memma Singha, Consultant, UNICEF, Assam office visited the Lowkiwali and Bhaisiwali sapori in Dibrugarh district.. The visit was to see the progress of the Feeder schools initiated by C-NES with UNICEF support.. The C-NES team was led by Sanjay Sharma, Associate Programme Manager and included Madhabi Lahon, Education Coordinator, Bhaskar Jyoti Bhuyan, CRS Coordinator, Jonali Pator and Jintu Baruah, Field Supervisors CRS, Santosh and Sanjay Yadav, Community Workers, and the Boat crew of Dhemaji Boat Clinic , SB Shahnaz.. A brief presentation on the Education initiative was made by Sanjay Sharma while Deepa Das highlighted the concept of Feeder school and said that this initiative has the potential to reduce the dropout rates at the primary level to a large extent especially in inaccessible areas such as the Brahmaputra river islands.. Impressed with the feeder school model, Urmila Sarkar said that it could be upscaled to newer areas having similar profiles.. At the Lowkiwali feeder school, the UNICEF team interacted with the children.. The villagers and the school Managing Committee were present.. The headmaster of Sarikholia govt.. LP (Nodal school) school, Dinanath Choubey was present at the school.. Ratul Das of Sarba Siksha Abhigyan, also present on the occasion, promised 100 school bags for the children.. The next school visited was Bhaisiwali Feeder School, founded in May 2010 at the behest of the women of the sapori.. 31 children have been enrolled in this school so far and the team interacted with the children and the villagers for about an hour.. Children attending classes at the feeder school at Lowkiwali sapori.. The team interacting with the local community at the feeder school.. Awareness on RNTCP at Dhubri.. An awareness session on Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program (RNTCP) was organized by the Dhubri health team in collaboration with District TB Office, at Aminerchar in July 2010.. The local ASHA, Anwanwadi worker, gaon panchayat member, village teacher, headman and villagers were informed in advance about the camp and they took an active part in the programme held at local L.. School.. RNTCP is the State-run Tuberculosis Control Initiative of the Government of India.. It incorporates the principles of Directly Observed Treatment- (DOTS) the global TB control strategy of the World Health Organization.. The program provides, free of cost, quality Anti-Tubercular drugs across the country through the numerous Primary Health Centres and the growing numbers of the private-sector DOTS-providers.. Roy, District TB Officer along with 4 technical staff of RNTCP attended the camp as resource persons.. They spoke on RNTCP, TB and its complete cure by DOTS.. The team stressed on the need for village ASHAs and Anganwadi workers becoming DOTS provider in the char village.. More than 100 villagers attended the programme and responded positively to the camp held for over one and half hours.. Media on Boat Clinics.. The Russian TV team at Nalbari.. The Russian TV team interviewing the Medical Officer of the Nalbari Boat Clinic, Dr Ruhul Amin Haque.. “Getting access to healthcare in rural Assam is never easy, and even more difficult during the monsoon, when the Brahmaputra River covers much of the land.. But by delivering healthcare to the doorstep of the villagers, the boat clinic could mean the difference between life and death”.. Russian TV commenting on the Boat Clinics after attending a Boat Clinic conducted health camp at Nalbari in July 2010.. A similar team from Delhi Doordarshan accompanied the Nalbari Boat Clinic team to cover a health camp at Barballa IV char in the same month.. The camp was conducted in the EGS centre.. Both teams took footages of the camps including immunizations, ANCs and general check ups.. 40 years old Bhakteswar Narah, from Moinapara sapori was found severely anemic, with a hemoglobin count of mere 3.. 7% by the Tinsukia Boat Clinic team in a health camp in July, 2010.. He was given adequate doses of iron tablets and asked to report back to the team during the next camp.. Expressing his gratitude to the team he informed the team that on account of his weakness, he has not been able to work at the paddy fields for quite a while now, which he can ill afford given his poor economic condition, the case is being no different with most of his fellow villagers he added..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra(Vol:10) April-June2010 : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra(Vol:10) April-June2010.. | August 1, 2010 |.. C-NES Newsletter (For the quarter April June 2010).. Confront China on Brahmaputra River.. With every day, news of fresh confrontations roils the Northeastern region.. One day it is the Naga-Manipur face-off; another day it is a farmers’ agitation, a third is on demands to stop major dams.. There are times when, because of media hype, these appear to be the only issues which are of concern to the area.. But often unseen and not discussed are a few fundamental issues which lurk in the background and which the Indian media has failed to understand and hence to report and cover in any depth.. Fundamental to the survival of the region and its people is the issue of water and particularly the future of the Brahmaputra.. Since the 1990s, concern has grown in India and other countries over plans by the Chinese to dam or divert the Tsanpgo as the Brahmaputra is known in Tibet, where it is born and where it flows for more than half of its long journey to the Bay of Bengal.. There are conflicting reports of where and how many dams the Chinese plan to build.. But what is clear is that the Government of India’s response has been weak and fuzzy.. All that the Water Resources Secretary (as have his predecessors) has had to say is that “we are watching.. ” This is how it is, how it was (remember 1962 and the Chinese blitzkrieg across the borders in Arunachal Pradesh?) and how, unfortunately, it seems that it will be – we will “watch” without coming to any conclusion.. It was as recently as in April this year that External Affairs Minister SM Krishna told Parliament that a “small project” was being built, with a capacity of 540 MW and a cost of 1,138 million yen.. When I traveled across Tibet some years ago, I did not see any projects on the Tsangpo but did not two small hydel projects on streams that flowed into it.. The question is what the Chinese intend to do with the Brahmaputra; after all they are never known for small projects but mega ones like the Three Gorges Dam on the Yangtze, which even the US Corps of.. Engineers said was impossible to build.. But the Chinese did build it, displacing two million people in the process.. The displacement did not matter; what was important to Beijing was that the project, buttressing the image of a nation determined to complete its public commitments, no matter the cost.. Even among Chinese academics there is lack of clarity – and agreement about the dams on the Tsangpo and what should be done about them.. At a workshop in Dhaka earlier this year, three senior Chinese scholars of engineering and hydrology emphasized and re-emphasized that China was not building any dams on the river.. One scholar said that there were only three data gathering stations in one section of the river; that material was then communicated to the Indian Government’s met department at least twice a day so that, especially at times of high rainfall in the summers, the Indians were fed information about scale and velocity of the waters and currents as they moved through the Himalayas into India.. A few weeks after that assertion about no dams, came the External Affairs Minister’s worrying declaration that our neighbour was indeed building one, no matter how small.. This will affect not just Assam and the North-east but also the final recipient of the waters.. downstream – Bangladesh.. India and Bangladesh need to make common cause on this issue – they have been so alienated from each other on Ganges water sharing.. The Bramaputra is crucial to their common future and they cannot let China play games with it, just as it has done with the Mekong, the Irrawady and the Salween in South-east Asia, ignoring international norms and rights of downstream riparian states.. Tens of millions of poor and marginalized farmers depend on such cooperation – and on the need to confront China on its effort to control the future of this part of the planet by controlling its water resources.. ( From his regular column North by North East , in Sunday Guardian).. Annual Review Meeting at Shillong.. The second annual review meeting of C-NES was held at picturesque Shillong, the capital of Meghalaya in April 2010 attended by thirty seven staff members from the organization led by the Managing Trustee (MT), Mr Sanjoy Hazarika.. The first review meeting was held a year ago in May 2009 at Guwahati.. Members from the Programme Management Unit (PMU), nine doctors, ten District Programme Officers (DPOs) from an equal number of districts where the C-NES- NRHM “Boat Clinic” project to take health services to unreached communities on the Brahmaputra is being implemented, were present at the meeting.. The District Education Coordinators from Dibrugarh and Lakhimpur working for the UNICEF supported education outreach programme and Family Planning Counselors from Dibrugarh, Tinsukia Dhemaji, Lakhimpur and Sonitpur districts, part of the C-NES- Population Foundation of India (PFI) family planning programmes were also present.. Chaired for both days by the MT, participants present at the meeting shared their respective work plans, experiences, problems faced and how best to overcome them, engaging in dialogues with Mr Hazarika and with each other.. C-NES staff at the Review Meet in Shillong.. Journalist covers Boat Clinic.. Hanna Ingber Win, multi-media journalist based in Mumbai, covering it for Global Post was assigned by the Pulitzer Centre to cover the Boat Clinics health services in April 2010.. Hanna was the founding World Editor of the Huffington Post and has lived and worked in Burma, Thailand, South Africa and the United States.. The Boat Clinic health initiative provides basic health services to the remote island dwellers of the Brahmaputra with focus on maternal health.. At 480 per 1, 00,000 live births, Assam has highest maternal mortality rate in the country.. Having earlier covered maternal health in Ethiopia, the journalist selected the state for her study.. She visited health camps in Nalbari, Morigaon and Dibrugarh.. As the scheduled camps at Dibrugarh were cancelled due to high water, her focus shifted to the tea garden community.. Relevant information was obtained through the MAPEDIR (Maternal and Prenatal Death Enquiry Response) study initiated last year by UNICEF at Dibrugarh on a pilot basis.. Eleven maternal deaths were reported in the district during 2009-10 out of which seven were from the tea community.. Out of these seven, three were selected randomly for the study.. Successive visits were made to meet the family members of the deceased.. Her writings on the Boat Clinic are available on the C-NES.. website.. Hanna interviewing young mothers at Morigaon’s Pithakhaiti char.. Hanna with C-NES staff members at the Guwahati Office.. UNICEF Officials at Boat Clinics.. Unicef officials with the Dibrugarh Boat Clinic staff at Maijan Ghat, Dibrugarh.. UNICEF Global and India Chiefs for Health, Mickey Chopra and Henri Ven Den respectively, visited the Boat Clinics in upper Assam accompanied by Dr Ajay Thakroo, Unicef, Assam in May 2010.. The team arrived at Dibrugarh’s Maijan Ghat where the Dhemaji Boat Clinc SB Shahnaz was docked and were felicitated by the team.. Also present on the occasion were Joint Director Health Services, Dr Tulika Goswami Mahanta of AMCH and Manisha Buragohain, Deputy Programme Manager, NRHM.. The Dibrugarh and Dhemaji Boat team members were present.. The boat sailed towards Nagaghuli for an hour with the visitors onboard.. Sanjay Sharma, Associate Programme Manager, C-NES gave a brief presentation on the boat clinics and its operational methodology, how and when the concept started, collaborations and the progress made so far.. Photographs of the Boat Clinics and of health camps being conducted were shown to the visitors.. “Your hard work and inspiration is bringing services to people  ...   her home swept away.. When the health team reached the island most people were busy shifting or relocating their homes.. The team met the villagers and the ASHA to offer solace.. At Tinsukia, the Brahmaputra was flowing above the danger level.. Laika, Erashuti Sapori and most river line villages of the district, including the police station and forest office at Guijan were submerged.. The district administration requested the Tinsukia Boat Clinic team to serve the affected villages.. Accordingly with the subsiding of the water level, the team traveled to Laika sapori crossing a rivulet flowing through Dibru Saikhowa reserve forest on a small country boat.. The camp was held in the Laika Pamua L.. School premises and continued for 4 hours where 125 patients were treated, 9 children were immunized and 5 ante natal check ups were conducted.. The team conducted a health camp at Erashuti, another flood affected village.. Water Testing Kits to sapori.. The Lakhimpur.. Boat Clinic team on way to conduct a health camp.. At Lakhimpur’s Kankur Sapori, erosion and water logging are perennial problems.. The impure water resulting from floods and water logging is used for domestic consumption and is one of the main reasons for frequent outbreak of water borne diseases.. The Lakhimpur health team supplied water testing kits in the sapori for testing drinking water.. Awareness campaigns on the need for safe drinking water are regularly held.. In April 2010 an awareness meeting was held on diarrhea, its prevention and cure.. Positive Response to awareness campaigns.. Mothers with infants at an immunization camp in Jorhat.. Awareness Campaigns through Information Education Communication (IEC) and Behavior Change Communication (BCC) by the boat clinic health teams have brought in a gradual mind set change in an insulated community.. Emphasis is laid on Inter Personal Communication method of awareness building and the results are gradually beginning to show.. Small children have started wearing slippers; walking around with naked feet being one of the main causes for worm infestation.. People pay attention to personal hygiene and on maintaining a clean environment to thwart the onset of diseases.. The health teams in all districts have noticed a distinct change in attitude, with increasing numbers of young mothers with babies clinging to their backs coming to the immunization centers Gone are the days when the very idea of an immunization team coming to their homes was met with hostility.. There are frequent instances of.. women coming to the doctors and saying that they want family planning because they do not want any more children and are aware of the dangers this poses to their health.. The doctors feel it a part of duty to educate people on the basics of health.. The teams lay more emphasis on the preventive aspect of health care.. It has been a constant challenge as people do not let go off age old beliefs and superstitions easily.. Awareness Camp at Hamur Char:.. Young girls of Hamur Char gearing up for the race during the awareness camp.. An awareness camp was held at Morigaon’s Hamur char in May 2010 at the LP School premises of the char village.. About 400 people were present.. They were informed earlier about the camp through the community workers.. People from nearby Lahari, Namabasti and Bhangkhaura chars villages also attended the camp.. Along with imparting general awareness on health issues like importance of immunization, ante-natal, post-natal care, exclusive breast feeding, family planning, sanitation and personal hygiene some entertainment and sports were also organized for community entertainment.. A documentary promoting Family Planning, Immunization, Malaria, and Polio was shown.. The meeting was addressed by the DPO Morigaon Boat Clinic, A K Azad, Dr.. PS Bordoloi, Joint Director of Health Services, Morigaon and Arupjyoti Kalita, DPM, NRHM Morigaon.. The JD Health Services shared the district health society’s plan of setting up a sub-centre in char villages in the near future.. Arupjyoti.. Kalita, District Programme Manager of NRHM, Morigaon emphasized the need to have institutional delivery.. An open quiz for women on Mother and Child health and family planning was held and prizes given to enthusiastic participants.. 30 year old Kulsum Bibi was chosen the ‘best mother’ from Hamur Char.. Married at the age of 19 Kulsum is now the mother of three children who are fully immunized.. She had undergone the mandatory 3 ante-natal checkups and delivered all three children in a hospital.. She has been taking oral pill for the last one and half years and plans to undergo permanent sterilization soon.. Interns.. Interns Julia and Tarika seen here with Mr Hazarika and senior C-NES staff at Guwahati.. The Boat Clinic initiative has provided opportunities to students doing research on delivery of primary healthcare and education to the islands on the Brahmaputra.. Five interns from the US are conducting studies on the Boat Clinics from May 2010.. Dwijo Goswami, Alon Slutzy, Julia Evans and Tarika Shridhar are undergraduaute students at the Institute of Global Leadership at Tufts University, Boston and Brian Orland is doing his post graduation from John Hopkins University, Washington DC.. Binita Kakati, a second year student of Sociology at Lady Shri Ram College, New Delhi, also interned for a month with C-NES in Guwahati and at the boat clinic in Dibrugarh.. Dwijo researched the barriers that both institutions and communities are facing in providing service deliveries to mothers at Barpeta Dhubri, Morigaon, Jorhat, Dhemaji, Dibrugarh and Tinsukia attending health camps at the boat Clinics.. Julia and Tarika have attended Boat Clinics health camps at Dibrugarh , Tinsukia,Jorhat,.. Morigaon, and Sonitpur and are also conducting a study on the indigenous Assamese Muslim community.. Alon studied the Boat Clinics giving health services to marginalized communities in a rural setting visiting Barpeta, Nalbari, Morigaon, Jorhat, Dibrugarh, Tinsukia and Dhemaji.. Brian has been conducting a research on the Brahmaputra, flood prone communities and related issues in Dibrugarh, Tinsukia, Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Jorhat and Dhubri.. Earlier in 2008 four Interns from “Knowledge Community on Children in India” (KCCI) summer internship program sponsored by UNICEF conducted a two-month case study on the boat clinics.. Research on the Boat Clinics was also conducted by two students from the Tufts University, US in 2008.. This is developing into a major partnership with a leading US university which sends senior students for on hand field experience in complex social and environmental conditions.. Sanjoy Hazarika at literary festival.. Sanjoy Hazarika in conversation with Ravi Singh, publisher of Penguin India,at the literary festival.. Sanjoy Hazarika, Managing Trustee of C-NES and renowned author, was invited to the first literary festival held in Bhutan from May 17-21, 2010 at the Himalayan kingdom s capital of Thimpu.. Hazarika, was invited to read from his books on the North-east and share his experiences at the Mountain Echoes festival, which was supported by the Indo-Bhutan Foundation and other sponsors.. The festival, which was curated by Siyahi, the literary organizers and agents, based in Jaipur, drew celebrities such as the great poet and Oscar winner Gulzar, best-selling author Chetan Bhagat, Penguin India s publisher Ravi Singh and TV personality Sunil Sethi of NDTV as well as Ms.. Namita Gokhale and Patrick French.. The festival was inaugurated by Her Majesty the Queen Mother, Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck, who is herself an author, and Prime Minister Jigme Y.. Thinley while Shr Pawan Varma, India s Ambassador to Bhutan and a prominent writer himself, also spoke.. At a reception at India House, Mr.. Varma s official residence, HM the Queen Mother greeted Mr.. Hazarika warmly and said that they had long read and admired his writings.. Hazarika had separate meetings with the Prime Minister of Bhutan, Mr.. Thinley, whom he has know for several years, as well Commerce Minister Lympo Khandu and the Home Minister.. They expressed their deep appreciation about the historic and friendly ties between Assam and Bhutan and the need to further strengthen these relations..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra (Vol:9) Jan-Mar 2010 : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra (Vol:9) Jan-Mar 2010.. | April 1, 2010 |.. (For the quarter Jan Mar 2010).. The Dalai Lama speaks – compassion, humour and discipline.. The Banquet Hall of the Ashok Hotel, once the Government of India’s flagship property where great international conferences were held and heads of state stayed and were feted at banquets, had been converted into a shimmering temple of orange and ochre, its floor emptied of tables and instead covered with mattresses covered with white sheets and rich red bolsters.. Chairs were placed along the sides and at the back to enable those who preferred, to sit.. On the stage was a small wooden throne where the monk, Tenzing Gyatso, wearing dark glasses and wrapped in a robe surveyed the listeners benignly.. Portraits of Avalokiteswara, a Bodhisatva , and of the Buddha were painted onto cloth at the back and there were low tables full of little figurines of the Buddha and other deities as well as lamps with rotating images of Om Padme Mane Hum in the Tibetan script.. In the background, gentle, sonorous Tibetan chants played and the aroma of the sharp incense that Tibetan monasteries are known for filled the air.. It was incredibly peaceful and I walked in, to take part in three half days of the Dalai Lama’s teachings, and met a few old friends and colleagues like Sudip Mazumdar, one-time Newsweek reporter who now lives is splendid isolation in the hills.. Those who attended the teachings include many dedicated Buddhists or followers of the Dalai Lama; I have been interested for long but have not been able to attend his discourses.. This time, at the encouragement of a close friend, I made it a priority.. I’ve interviewed him in the past in Dharamsala, traveled in Tibet and am sympathetic to the Tibetan struggle against Chinese control.. To me, the monk hood in Tibet – as in Burma, also under a repressive regime –is a symbol of the sustaining power of Buddhism as well as continuing presence of the Dalai Lama, even after his flight to India in 1959.. He has been in India for over half a century but his belief in Indian democracy, despite its many shortcomings, despite New Delhi political ambivalence and failure to bluntly confront the Chinese on the Tibetan issue many times, remains unchanged.. To those who complained about the failings in Indian democracy, he always had had a clear answer: look at an authoritarian regime such as China, where the basic freedoms do not exist, and you will understand how important India’s democracy is to its people and to the world.. Rubbing his forehead, occasionally sneezing and chortling as the sneeze, magnified by the mouthpiece he was wearing, startling some, the Dalai Lama reflected on the need for mental calm, on suffering, compassion, introspection, forgiveness, tolerance and cognition.. Throughout those days, I kept thinking of the amazing privilege of our participation – when six million of his deeply religious countrymen, to whom he is a reincarnation of Avalokiteshwara, are deprived of a glimpse of his physical presence not to speak of that energetic voice.. Yet, he remains an enduring symbol of their hopes.. From my travels in Tibet as well as interactions with Chinese scholars and former government officials, including diplomats, it is clear that Beijing does not understand or even begin to counter his spiritual and moral influence despite his physical absence.. It angers them but they don’t know how to deal with it, despite their troops and heavy.. weaponry, the migration they have encouraged, the “development” andinfrastructure they have built.. Tibetan loyalty, it appears, is not for sale.. The Chinese were furious this year when the Dalai Lama announced that Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh, assiduously sought by the Chinese in the border negotiations, was very much part of India, a statement he had not met before, and New Delhi rejoiced in Chinese discomfiture.. He made the statement in Tawang itself and when I asked about it during a brief break in the discourses, he remarked: “But that is the correct position.. ”.. China needs to seriously dialogue with the Dalai Lama’s negotiators to find a middle ground instead of playing a waiting game, hoping that he will vanish from the scene and people will lose faith and interest.. Real-time negotiations would reflect the mind of a mature nation and not a near Super Power that is, at its core, even 51 years down the.. road, unsure of its hold, acquired through stealth and military might, on the Tibetan people and afraid of a man without an army, armed with spiritual knowledge, the love of his people and the support of much of the world.. And that is why India must, without deviation or demur, respect and back the Dalai Lama.. Highlights of the C-NES-NRHM Boat Clinic Public Private Partnership.. Boat Clinic under NRHM- Activity Report (Apr 2009 till FEB 2010).. Districts.. Health Checkup.. RI.. ANC.. PNC.. Vit A.. Spl.. Vaccination.. IPPIP.. Delivery.. Total.. Tinsukia.. 11837.. 466.. 249.. 18.. 5.. 0.. 12575.. 1314.. 10770.. 638.. 495.. 66.. 96.. 12065.. 12.. Dibrugarh.. 8124.. 912.. 250.. 23.. 456.. 573.. 10338.. 942.. 16898.. 2410.. 1126.. 380.. 648.. 188.. 21650.. 552.. Dhubri.. 21365.. 2889.. 485.. 69.. 73.. 24881.. 1271.. Lakhimpur.. 14244.. 968.. 330.. 106.. 259.. 15907.. 527.. Jorhat.. 7712.. 292.. 223.. 41.. 159.. 8427.. 540.. Sonitpur.. 12366.. 2911.. 731.. 102.. 1848.. 1317.. 911.. 20198.. 3016.. Nalbari.. 15809.. 3482.. 688.. 91.. 248.. 20318.. 2235.. 11187.. 3779.. 955.. 207.. 1178.. 17306.. 1731.. 130312.. 18747.. 5532.. 1103.. 4970.. 1672.. 163665.. 12140.. From the Boat Clinics.. C-NES Trustee visits Boat Clinics.. Mr Chaman Lal, C-NES Trustee and former Special Rapporteur at the National Human Rights Commission, also former DGP, Nagaland, was on a visit to review the functioning of the Boat Clinics in December 2009.. The review follows the broad objectives of the programme spelt out in the MOU signed by C-NES with NRHM.. Mr Lal was on a similar visit in May 2009 where he visited seven of the ten districts where the boat clinic health initiative has been operating in partnership with NRHM.. The Trustee visited all 10 districts to assess the performance of the C-NES units on the ground and take stock of their constraints and difficulties.. Ekka, Mission Director, NRHM at Guwahati.. Training on National Health Programmes:.. A training for Boat Clinic staff was organized in association with NRHM in February 2010 at Guwahati.. The objective of the program was to highlight the National Health Programs with special emphasis on Maternal and Child Health, the main focus of the Boat Clinic health camps.. The participants included 16 doctors, 10 District Program Officers (DPO), the Program Management Unit of C-NES from Guwahati and guest invitees.. Resource persons included Dr.. P.. Bora, SPM, Dr.. Hira, Consultant, Maternal Health, Dr.. A.. Sarma,Consultant Child Health, S.. Borthakur, BCC expert, and Dr.. Sandip Ghosh from NRHM, Dr.. Bora, TB/HIV coordinator, Dr.. Barman, Malaria consultant of RNTCP and C-NES Trustee, Dr.. Mahfuza Rahman.. Dr PN Bora spoke on NRHM, its programs and application to the Boat Clinics.. Child Health and preparation of Micro Plan for Routine Immunisation was explained by Dr.. Sarma.. Disease control with a focus on TB and how the program can be taken to the island population was informed by Dr.. Simanta Bora.. National Vector Borne Disease Control program with focus on Malaria and Japanese encephalitis in Assam with the areas where the disease in mainly prevalent was discussed by Dr.. Barman.. Hira discussed Maternal Health with emphasis to Assam which has the highest MMR in the country.. Family planning issues and its implementation in boat clinic was highlighted and discussed by Dr.. Mrs.. Borthakur dealt with the tools of IEC and steps for Behavioral Change Communication (BCC) in generating awareness among the targeted population.. All the sessions were interactive where participants related their field experiences to the resource persons.. Intern from TISS.. Dr  ...   at the Republic Day Tableau in Nalbari and Lakhimpur by the respective District Health Societies, winning the first prize at Lakhimpur and the second at Nalbari.. The model at Lakhimpur, designed by District Media Expert, Bijendra Gogoi, highlighted the need for family planning and institutional delivery including Govenment incentives for the same.. The Republic Day function was held at Lakhimpur’s Commerce College Field where the Deputy Commissioner, Jayanta Narlikar hoisted the National Flag.. At Nalbari the function was held at the Gordon field, where the State Revenue Minister, Dr Bhumidhar Burman hoisted the Tricolour in presence of the Deputy Commissioner, Ashutosh Agnihotri and other district officials.. The event was covered in leading vernacular dailies of the state- Khabar, Amar Asom and Pratidin.. From the launch of the Boat Clinic in Dibrugarh in 2005 and its spread across Assam to 10 districts in 2009, most districts have reported support from villagers and government.. Sanjoy Hazarika presented ‘Global Citizenship’ award.. Tufts University, one of the leading US universities, has awarded this year’s Dr Jean Mayer Award for Global Citizenship to Mr Sanjoy Hazarika for his advocacy of issues in India’s northeast to a national and international audience.. The award, presented every year to scholars and practitioners who have made significant contributions to improving the lives of people in their areas of work and impacting both research and policy, also recognizes Hazarika’s innovative work and initiatives in health and governance in the area.. Previous recipients of the award have included Nobel Laureate’s economist Amartya Sen and South African freedom fighter Rev.. Desmond Tutu.. Hazarika, said in acceptance remarks that he appreciated the recognition that the award represented for the work of his team, research staff and the support of his family.. “Without their cooperation and commitment, our work in the fields of health, environment, building bridges of understanding, research, policy change and governance would not have been possible,” he said.. Eye check ups at Dhubri char.. Ophthalmic Assistant Dr B.. Deka and a team from the District Blindness Control Society, Dhubri was deputed to two camps organized by the Dhubri boat clinic at Namapara and Dangirchar Bagmara chars in December 2009.. Nampara char, located downstream Dhubri ghat under Dharmasala PHC and Aironjongla gaon panchayat has a population of 1100.. This was a regular monthly camp in this char.. In the absence of ASHA, the community workers informed the villagers.. The camp was conducted near the river bank and an awareness session of 45 minutes on routine immunization and family planning was conducted before the eye check up session.. Dr Deka attended to patients with vision problems, screening and short listing patients with cataract and referred them for operation at the Civil Hospital, Dhubri.. This will be a regular feature in the Dhubri health camps.. UNICEF Official at Lowkiwali feeder school.. C-NES has been implementing an education initiative with UNICEF support -that of up scaling education for school dropouts in the saporis of Dibrugarh and Lakhimpur districts.. In February 2011, Sara Poehlman, Education Specialist, UNICEF India accompanied by Deepa Das, Education Officer, UNICEF, Assam visited Dibrugarh to observe a feeder school set up by C-NES with UNICEF support.. C-NES educational team led by Associate Programme Manager, Sanjay Sharma, Madhabi Lahon, newly appointed educational coordinator and Bhaskar Bhuyan, the Community Radio Station coordinator were present with the UNICEF team.. It took the group over four hours to reach the Lowkiwali Feeder School, travelling in a small country boat from Sarikholia, spending over two hours in the school.. Poehlman met the children and interacted with them on a one to one basis.. Madhabi Lahon and Bhaskar Bhuyan conducted a class in English for the students of class five.. There was a brief presentation on C-NES’ education initiative by Sanjay Sharma on board boat clinic Shanaz showing the objectives, activities conducted, trends of enrollment, baseline surveys and the overall reduction in out of school children at the primary level after the C-NES- UNICEF intervention.. Lamenting that there were 8 million children out of school in India, Poehlman said that C-NES educational programme in Dibrugarh and Lakhimpur has made significant contributions in bringing out of school children back to mainstream education.. A meeting with the villagers was organized where the UNICEF official said that she was “extremely satisfied” to see this community run school adding that she would request the concerned ministry to take up this model for upscalling and to replicate it in other districts.. Elementary education in the saporis of Dibrugarh and Lakhimpur after project intervention as on December 2009: an overall scenario.. Particulars.. Dropouts and never enrolled children in survey.. 82.. 277.. 335.. Bridge course enrolment.. 46.. 142.. Feeder school enrolment.. 245.. 156.. 401.. Total enrollment in Bridge courses and feeder schools.. 291.. 298.. 589.. Total enrollment in all schools in the saporis.. 748.. 1169.. 1917.. Meetings and appointments of the Managing Trustee.. 2.. 1.. 10.. Lunch meet with Mr.. Raghav Pandey, Former Petroleum Secretary.. 7.. Nandan Nilekani, Chairman, Unique Identification Authority Of India , New Delhi.. 8.. Attended book launch ‘The Hidden Land by Mamang Dai, noted author from Arunachal Pradesh.. 11.. Attended Dinner Reception with Minister Deputy Head of Mission in German Embassy.. 15-16.. Participated in second international workshop on “Himalayan Sub-regional Cooperation for Water Security” and spoke on the issue “Ideas for cooperation in hydroelectricity and water based tradeb and transit” organized by Strategic Foresight Group, co-hosted by the Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies and supported by the prestigious MacArthur Foundation in Dhaka, Bangladesh.. 21.. Attended Informal briefing followed by lunch organized by Institute of Peace And Conflict Studies for Mr Barry Lowenkron, Vice President McArthur Foundation on his visit to India on 21 January 2010 at Habitat Centre, New Delhi.. 22.. Spoke at National Seminar on: “Illegal Immigration and Demographic Developments in India” organised by Patriots’ Forum at IIC Conference Room, New Delhi.. 3.. 2.. Dinner on the occasion of the visit President of the Federal Republic of Germany Prof.. Horst Kholer Mrs.. Eva Luise Kohler at Embassy of Federal Republic of Germany.. 10.. Met Mr.. 15.. Organized memorial meeting to honour remember Dr.. Biswajeet Saikia at Academy of Third World Studies, Jamia Millia Islamia.. Biswajeet was a friend, fearless scholar and thinker who passed away suddenly from renal failure.. 16-20.. 3.. Received the Dr.. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award from Tufts University, participated in panels on ’South Asia’s Troubled Waters: Deluge and Disappearance’, ‘Violent Discontent: Addressing Regional Insurgencies’ and ‘The Future of Kashmir’ in 2010 EPIIC international symposium at Tufts University.. He presented also the work of C-NES ‘ health initiative and separately led a breakout discussion group on water issues in South Asia where he screened his film, ‘Children of the River, the xihus of Assam’ on the endangered Gangetic river dolphins in the Brahmaputra.. 25-26.. Attended National Seminar on Social Research in ‘North East India: Issues and Challenges’ Organized by North East India Studies Programme, at School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.. 26.. Attended lecture of Professor Fakir Syed Aijazuddin, International Councilor of the Asia Society, New York on ‘Pakistan : Your Distant Neighbour’ at Ho Chi Minh Conference Hall, ATWS, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi.. 16.. Meeting with World Development Report 2011 drafting team and presented issues and concerns of the North-east and neighboring regions, World Bank Office, New Delhi.. 19.. Participated Two days India Bangladesh dialogue by ORF jointly with Bangladesh Enterprise Institute.. 20-21.. Participated in Buddhist teachings by His Holiness The Dalai Lama, New Delhi.. Organized the first Saifuddin Kitchelew Annual Lecture by the noted editor and author, Mr.. Akbar on ‘Indian Muslims: Crisis, Confrontation and Challenges’ at Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi.. 25.. Organized and Chaired one-day Seminar on ‘Assam and the role of Muslims in the Independence Movement’ Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi.. 27.. Attended C-NES Board of Trustee meeting, New Delhi.. 30.. Attended National Disaster Management Authority’s Advisory Committee Meeting, New Delhi..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 8, Oct-Dec 2009) : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 8, Oct-Dec 2009).. | January 27, 2010 |.. For this issue s editorial, I am delighted to share with readers an article of mine which appeared in the Tribune of Chandigarh some time back.. The Unique Identification Number Project is an important issue which needs discussion in Assam and the NE and I hope this article will help in that conversation, without rancor or rhetoric but based on reality.. Nilekani and the Bangladeshi Syndrome:.. UIN can’t resolve the illegal migration problem.. The Government of India’s initiative to develop a Unique Identification Number for every Indian under the leadership of Nandan Nilekani is a master stroke.. Yet, I am not sure it would be able to conclusively deal with the issue of citizenship which is extremely sensitive and complex in the North-east, especially in Assam.. Despite a border fence, migrants still come for economic purposes, to work and earn a living.. While it is clear that some of the movement is temporary – of people going back and forth for work, especially as unskilled labour – but another part of it is permanent, with people leaving their homes with the intention of setting up a new residence.. Some move to Assam and then travel to other parts o the North-east and go to different parts of India through the transport system which exists.. An elaborate process of travel touts and organizers helps this movement.. There are an estimated 1.. 5 million to two million (15 to 20 lakhs) illegal migrants in Assam and no law or government is strong enough or determined enough to “throw them out” as agitators would have them do.. It is not as easy as it sounds: the concentrations of migrants, the mixing with local communities (also Muslim and originally Bengali speakers who have adopted Assamese as their new language) and the dangers of communal clashes/trouble leading to major law and order situations are the very reasons why no government in Delhi or Assam over the past 20 years, despite spewing hot rhetoric, has been able to do anything substantial about it.. No government wants to create a law and order problem for itself – and there are not less than an estimated 20 million Bangladeshis in India: to put this figure in proportion, it represents 12 percent of Bangladesh’s population or one third of Assam or the combined population of the seven states of the North-east (excluding Assam).. Nikelani’s Commission must consult the old registers and lists related to citizens, settlers and voters.. This is a huge, thankless and elaborate task which assumes greater significance because still we do not know how many refugees India hosts or how many migrants or how many illegal migrants.. After all, who will be entitled to the UIN?.. How would you differentiate between a foreign national who claims Indian citizenship and a bona fide Indian?.. My suggestion on migration has been in the public domain for some years.. There should be a National Immigration Commission, but there should be ID cards for all residents in the region based on the National Register of Citizens of 1951 and then Work Permits for all who have come after 1971.. There is an agreement at the bilateral level between India and Bangladesh of 1972 on the position on citizenship as well as the agreement between New Delhi and the All Assam Students Union in 1985 that laid down conditions for allowing pre-1971 migrants to vote and also said that those who came after 1971 would be identified and deported.. This has not happened because of the Illegal Migrants Determination by Tribunal Act of 1983, which was designed to protect settlers and applied only to Assam, was in place until the Supreme Court threw it out as ultra vires of the Constitution three years back.. The Centre resorted to subterfuge by amending the Foreigners Tribunal Order to make the relevant part applicable only to Assam Government but that too was struck down by the apex court.. In the process a lot of time has been wasted.. Yet, despite the emotions that the issue of migration arouses, it is important to look at innovative ways in which border management and migration regulatory regimes need to be made practical.. Thus, the proposed Work Permits would not be an acceptance of permanent settlement nor would it confer the right to vote; it would confirm the temporary status of migrants and ensure they would not be eligible to the rights of a citizens – to acquire immovable property, move elsewhere in the country, marry locally and exercise a franchise.. The significance of the Work Permits cannot be stressed enough – the Government of India plans to spend a staggering Rs.. 55,000 crore on developing the road infrastructure of the North East in the next years.. For that it and the states will require labour – which does not exist.. The Arjun Sengupta Commission on Unemployment in the Unorganized Sector said that 23 lakh workers would be required by 2015.. The North-east has a bare three lakh.. Where is the balance going to come from? No points for guessing: from other labour-producing parts of India, and probably Bangladesh.. Border management is crucial in a region which has 96 percent of its borders with other countries and four percent with the rest of India.. In that process, the classification of the outflow from Bangladesh as a labour flow may help.. We need to be clear about some of these issues and not play into the hands of rhetoric which misleads and fudges the real point.. While Constitutional guarantees must be provided to the indigene with a majority of seats in the State assembly reserved for them in perpetuity, Mr.. Nilekani has his work cut out for him as far as the North-east is concerned.. It is our hope that some of the points given above will help in the process of developing a robust and realistic plan that silences doomsday pundits.. Photo Gallery.. The following table provides updated details of the NRHM-C-NES partnership in 10 districts of Assam, where the Boat Clinics, manned by medical and paramedical teams, take regular health services to provide sustained care to isolated villages on the islands of the Brahmaputra.. Other aspects of the programme are also given below.. Boat Clinic under NRHM- Activity Report (till Dec2009).. Total Camps.. 144.. 10506.. 402.. 221.. 11150.. 778.. 121.. 10450.. 583.. 479.. 95.. 11673.. 7037.. 630.. 220.. 362.. 8267.. 531.. 197.. 14397.. 1905.. 845.. 324.. 510.. 17981.. 382.. 153.. 17778.. 2485.. 33.. 37.. 20715.. 975.. 12706.. 869.. 275.. 252.. 14197.. 420.. 122.. 6758.. 183.. 195.. 31.. 135.. 7302.. 460.. 143.. 11376.. 2614.. 685.. 94.. 1570.. 17656.. 2544.. 13675.. 3107.. 619.. 17609.. 1742.. National Mission Director, NRHM, visits Morigaon Boat Clinic.. The National Mission Director of NRHM, PK Pradhan, accompanied by the Commissioner Secretary Health, Govt.. of Assam, V.. Bhaskar, Dr JB Ekka, Mission Director, NRHM, Assam, and a team of Central, State and District Officials visited the Morigaon Boat Clinic in September 2009 to monitor the Boat Clinic activities.. The visitors interacted with the Boat Clinic team led by District Programme Officer, Abul Kalam Azad enquiring about facilities in the Boat Clinic like the pharmacy and laboratory and expressed satisfaction with the well-maintained records.. The team also interacted with ASHAs.. “Good job” commented Mr Bhaskar, assuring the team of another visit to the Boat Clinic.. Boost to Family Planning.. Among minority groups, family planning is an issue but with the help of doctors and community leaders, this is being directly addressed.. Supported by the Barpeta Boat Clinic, 42 No  ...   sand islands dotting the Brahmaputra.. People of the islands who could not even think of moving out during floods, now have access to quality treatment at their doorsteps.. Workshop on new project.. The Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES) has signed an agreement with the Heinrich Boll Foundation of Germany to conduct a year long project on the Impact of Conflict on Women, with a special focus on Assam and Nagaland.. This takes forward the work of an earlier research study that C-NES had done on the same theme, with a review of this very issue in Nagaland and Tripura.. A two-day workshop was organized to discuss the background, objectives and timeline of the overall project, on 9th and 10th November 2009 at Shillong, Meghalaya.. The workshop was attended by Project Director Sanjoy Hazarika, Managing Trustee (MT), Associate Project Director Preeti Gill, Editor of Zubaan, Patricia Mukhim, C-NES Trustee and Editor, Shillong Times, Dr P Ngully, Executive Director, Spastics Society of Nagaland, Nagaland Hospital, Dr.. Sandi Syiem, C-NES Advisory Council member and Chief Executive of San-Ker Rehabilitation Centre, Shillong, Professor Temsula Ao, Department of English, North Eastern Hill University, Shillong, Sanjeeb Kakoty, Faculty, Rajiv Gandhi Indian Institute of Management, Shillong; Rajesh Dev, Faculty, Department of Political Science, Women’s College, Shillong, and Niketu Iralu, C-NES Trustee and eminent social reformer.. PFI Visit and Orientation Meet.. An orientation meet was organized by C-NES in November 2009 at Guwahati for the organization s upcoming Population Foundation of India project to develop a programme for family planning in five districts of Assam- Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Sonitpur, Dibrugarh and Tinsukia.. The MT Sanjoy Hazarika and members of the Programme Management team attended the meeting.. Five District Coordinators appointed for the project- Priyamjyoti Phukon for Lakhimpur, Rhitiz Gogoi for Dhemaji, Ridip Bordoloi for Sonitpur, Jugananda Dutta for Dibrugarh, Vijeta Dutta for Tinsukia along with Pallabi Borpatra Gohain, the State Advocacy Family Planning Coordinator, were present at the meeting with the DPOs of the respective Boat Clinc districts.. The PFI team from Delhi comprised of Mridu Pandey, Programme Associate and Lopamudra Pal, Research Associate.. Welcoming the new members, Mr Hazarika said the three-year project would support the work and outreach achieved through an ongoing partnership of the innovative boat clinics with the National Rural Health Mission, Government of Assam, by focusing on propagating family planning methods.. Education initiative.. Training programmes for teachers are held to provide updated methods of teaching, teaching approaches, reading enhancement and school library management.. Exposure visits were also organized in Dibrugarh and Lakhimpur respectively.. The children of Dibrugarh were taken to historic sites of the Ahom period- Rang Ghar, Kareng ghar, Shiva dol in the upper Assam town of Sibsagar and the Oil township of Digboi.. The children of Lakhimpur visited Lakhimpur College, railway station, private schools, temples and parks.. Hand Washing Day at Sapori schools.. Global Hand washing Day (GHWD) is observed world over on October 15th to promote hand washing (with soap) as an important hygienic practice that reduces by two thirds, the prevalence of diarrhea, dysentery, other water borne diseases that affect and in many cases kills millions of children.. GHWD was observed in the five C-NES operated districts Dibrugarh, Tinsukia, Lakhimpur, Jorhat and Barpeta in Assam where prominent members of the village community, teachers and guardians were present.. The Associate Programme Manager, Sanjay Sharma attended the programme at Barpeta, Lakhimpur and Tinsukia.. At Lakhimpur, the highlight of the programme was an Oinitom dance (of the Mishing tribe) performed by girls of the C-NES established feeder school, Niganibari L P School, who were earlier out of school for over four years.. 14 of these girls (above 14 years) were earlier out of school.. Their excitement at being able to join mainstream education (with this school being set up in June 2009) was palpable.. At Jorhat’s Dolkhowa LP school, the village headman, Rupai Hazarika said, This kind of initiative is the first in our village”.. In addition, awareness campaigns on health and hygiene, family planning, safe drinking water and sanitation were also organized.. The Headmasters, teachers present lauded the initiatives of UNICEF and C-NES to spread awareness on the same.. Appointments/Meetings of Managing Trustee, Sanjoy Hazarika.. 4.. 09 Dinner at German Ambassador s Residence on the occasion of Day of German Unity in the 20th year after the fall of the Berlin Wall.. 13.. 09 Attended the Release function of the book Water at India International Centre.. 7-9/10.. 09 Participated in discussions at a Planning Conference organized by IPCS at Singapore on ‘Developing a Framework For Regional Cooperation In Southern Asia’ and spoke on the issue Expanding economic activity along border areas.. 14-22.. 09 Gave two major keynote addresses on ‘A Writer’s Perceptive of India, mapping the historical growth and economic development of the country’ along with 10 more lectures and screening of his film ‘Children of the River: the Xihus of Assam’ at a Semester at Sea programme, a traveling US University campus sponsored by University of Virginia.. 09 Addressed screening of Mr.. Jahnu Baruah’s award wining film ‘Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara’ followed by an interaction with the noted Director at Centre for InformationTechnology (CIT) Conference Hall, Jamia Millia Islamia University.. 28.. 09 Chaired the session of Mr.. Jahnu Baruah on ‘A Break in time… The Argument for a New Time Zone for North East India’ at India International Centre.. 11.. 09 “Such a long Journey” – A tribute to Irom Sharmila at Jamia Millia Islamia.. 6-7/11.. 09 Panelist on the discussion forum “Climate Change” INSA Leadership for Environment and Development (LEAD) India.. 8-10/11.. 09 Workshop for Boll Foundation Project at Shillong.. 09 Dinner with German Ambassador and the Minister, President of the German Federal state of Baden Wiirttemberg, Giinther H.. Oettinger at the German Embassy.. 20.. 09 Delivers sixth series of lecture on North-east at Centre for NE Studies, where he is Chair, Jamia Millia Islamia.. 09 Meeting with Jaswant Singh, MP, along with Dr.. Rajaretnam, advisor to the Secretary-General of Association of South East Asian Nations.. 09 Meeting with B.. Handique, Union Minister, DoNER, with Dr.. Rajaretnam.. 24.. 09 Chaired lecture of Harne Yawngh of Euro-Burma Office, Brussels, on Inside the Glass Palace, challenges opportunities in Burma,’ at the India International Centre.. 09 One-day seminar on “The Paranoia of Unpredictability – Is democracy possible in Burma/Myanmar?” at Jamia Millia Islamia.. 09 Participated and presented a paper at conference on Inter-regionalism between East Asia and SAARC: Perspectives, Challenges and Implications for the future, organized by Department of East Asian Studies, University of Delhi.. 1-2.. 12.. 09 Presented a paper at a Seminar on Human Rights in India at Jamia Millia Islamia.. 09 Participated in Panel discussion on the North-east at Indraprastha College for Women, Delhi University, at its Northeast festival.. 09 Gave a talk at National Seminar on “Human Rights Discourse in India – Challenges for Theory and Action Media and Activists,” Department of Political Science, Jamia Millia Islamia.. 5-6.. 09 Attended and participated in Seminar on India-Bangladesh Relations, Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development, Chandigarh.. 10-12.. 09 Participated, addressed and chaired session on media at “Expanding Elbow Space for the Voluntary Sector” Seminar.. Organized by The Ant, Guwahati.. 09 Meeting with Mr.. Jan Kreuter, Chargé d´Affaires of the Embassy of the Czech Republic.. 09 Meeting with M.. Akbar, columnist and author.. 09 Attended memorial for the historian and Sinologist, Professor Mira Sinha Bhattacharjee.. India International Centre, New Delhi.. 09 Gave a lecture at workshop on ‘Constructing conflict: A critical dialogue on media representations’, organized by Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai.. His session was on conflict and development..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 7) C-NES Newsletter : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 7) C-NES Newsletter.. | November 5, 2009 |.. There is good news on the environment front: the Central Government has declared that the Gangetic dolphin, found, as its name suggests, in the Ganges, its tributaries and also in the Brahmaputra and smaller rivers of the North-east, is the National Aquatic Animal.. This is a major and welcome boost to efforts to conserve and protect the species, among the four surviving fresh water dolphin species in the world.. New Delhi’s announcement follows the Assam Government’s decision last year to designate the highly endangered species, which is beloved for its spectacular leap out of the water but has been hunted for its blubber which is used, of all things, for fish bait, as the State Aquatic Animal; the state government took this significant decision after years of persistent briefings and lobbying by C-NES at the official and political levels, especially with Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and Environment and Forests Minister Rockybul Hussain.. A draft proposal for government was developed by us and then the then Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife) MC Malakar skillfully piloted it through the labyrinth of official files and offices before the Forests Minister placed it before Mr.. Gogoi for his signature and clearance.. Much is also due to the solid work by our team as also that of other groups such as Aranyak which have done such detailed and excellent scientific research over the years.. But the key has been to move from lab to field, to mobilize communities and help them understand that the dolphin is their greatest natural asset – both as a tourist attraction and livelihood generator but also as a way of assessing the fragility or strength of the river eco-system as the dolphin is at the top of the aquatic food chain.. Without involving local residents in this effort, it would not have been possible to move the process forward.. As one statesman has said, “An ounce of practice is worth many tons of theory.. ” We also had organized a Children’s Summit last year with fun and competitions about the dolphin, a film premiere of a documentary on the mammal (Children of the River: the xihus of Assam, directed by Maulee Senapati) around the time of the World Earth Day, when the state government announced its momentous decision.. A lot of credit is also due to Dr.. RK Sinha, head of the Department of Zoology at Patna University, who developed the organic alternative to dolphin oil for use as fish bait: this was the use of fish gut which, when heated produces an oil very similar to dolphin oil.. This alternative is cheap – since fish intestines are often thrown away as waste – but the results were dramatic: a three fold rise in fish catch and incomes.. As a result, the Binn community, descendants of Bihari fishermen who had migrated generations back to Assam, and who hunted the dolphin for its oil, are delighted and propagating the virtues of fish gut as the mantra for better incomes.. In the process, the dolphin, with its small numbers in Assam (about 270), is getting a fresh lease of life.. We have other good news from C-NES:.. We have signed an MOU with the Population Foundation of India to develop a programme for family planning in five districts of Upper Assam; this is a three-year project that will support the fine work and outreach achieved through an ongoing partnership of the innovative boat clinics with the National Rural Health Mission, Government of Assam, by focusing on propagating family planning methods.. One of the products we envisage is a set of documentary films on the boat clinics.. Talking about the Boat Clinics, I must commend our program management team and in the districts – district program officers, doctors and medical teams, including the nurses, lab technicians, pharmacists and village organizers for their magnificent effort through this year, when I have been devastated by a personal loss in the passing of my wife and life partner, Minal, to sustain, develop and deepen the programme.. Their work has meant that we are close to realizing our vision to reach 300,000 persons on the islands of the Brahmaputra by the end of 2009 with sustained health care for the first time in their lives, with an emphasis on women and child care.. Another agreement has been signed with the Boll Foundation of Germany to conduct a year-long project on the Impact of Conflict on Women, with a special focus on Assam and Nagaland.. Bhaskar Saud, who was associated with the Ford Foundation supported dolphin conservation project referred to above, has been awarded a fellowship by the Guwahati-based Foundation for Social Transformation to conduct a study on the impact of vehicular pollution, an issue that has long concerned many of us, in Shillong and Guwahati.. This is a year-long study which Bhaskar is expected to complete: he will look after the Guwahati segment while a scholar in Shillong is to do the research for that town.. But we are still to finalize the latter and those interested should apply to us at the C-NES office in Guwahati.. Our details are listed on this website.. SanjoyHazarika.. Programme Highlights.. Media institute has Managing Trustee on Faculty.. Sanjoy Hazarika, Managing Trustee of C-NES has been appointed member of the Advisory Board of the International Media Institute of India (IMII).. The board is comprised of top Indian and international journalists and media experts.. This non-profit educational center will combine cutting-edge, hands-on journalism instruction with the highest international standards.. Supported by Knight and Mac Arthur Foundations, the Delhi-based multimedia journalism center will be run by the International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) and Indian journalists.. ADB C-NES Partnership.. A pilot study.. on “Community based flood risk management and livelihood planning” in the flood prone areas of Kaziranga and Dibrugarh was carried out by C-NES under the Asian Development Bank (ADB) funded Assam Integrated Flood and River Erosion Risk Management Project.. The objective of the study was to help establish flood risk management committees at the village level to reduce the vulnerability of communities and strengthen their ability to cope with perennial floods.. Six villages, three from both places were selected for the study.. The project has since been completed.. The communities in each village have set up micro plans on flood management and livelihood with assistance from Asian Disaster Preparedness Centre, Bangkok (ADPC), submitted by C-NES to ADB in August 2009.. C-NES’ Managing Trustee Sanjoy Hazarika was the Project Director and Manik Boruah and Bhaskar Jyoti Saud were appointed Programme Coordinator and Community Facilitator respectively for the project.. Rita Gogoi, an independent researcher was the other community facilitator.. Annual Review Meeting.. An annual review meeting of C-NES was held at Guwahati in June 2009, attended by 35 C-NES staff, comprising of members from the Programme Management Unit (PMU), 18 doctors and 10 District Programme Officers (DPOs) from an equal number of districts where the National Rural Health Mission-C-NES’ “Boat Clinic” project to take health services to unreached communities on the Brahmaputra is being implemented.. The District Education Coordinator of Lakhimpur and Coordinators of the ADB project also attended the meeting.. Chaired for both days by Managing Trustee, Sanjoy Hazarika, the review was attended by C-NES Trustees, Niketu Iralu, social activist from Nagaland and Dr.. Mafuza Rahman of Cotton College, Guwahati, Assam.. In addition, Dr.. Ekka, Mission Director, NRHM, Government of Assam, Dr.. Milan Baruah, Superintendent, Marwari Maternity Hospital, and Dr.. Ajay Trakroo,Health Officer UNICEF, Assam, were present at the meeting, sharing their experiences and engaging in dialogues with the participants.. Ashok Rao, Programme Manger and Sanjay Sharma, Associate Programme Manager highlighted the progress of the Boat Clinic activities during the past one and a half years.. The DPOs presented the activities of their respective district at the meeting.. Community Radio Station.. An orientation meet on Community Radio was held at Dibrugarh in July 2009 for C-NES’ Unicef supported project of  ...   Assam.. Road communication to the construction site is good.. The boat is being built with the help of local carpenters, boat builders and raw materials.. The workers are from Salmora, the traditional village of boat builders.. In their opinion, the vessel will be completed by mid October 2009, for which they have been putting about eight hours of work on an average.. It has since been successfully lowered into the water and placed near the riverbank.. A hired boat is now conducting the Boat Clinic at Jorhat district which got underway in January 2009.. Camp at Muwamari char.. The Associate Programme Manager, Sanjay Sharma accompanied the Barpeta Boat Clinic Team to a camp at Muwamari char.. This was an unscheduled camp – held on request from the people due to an outbreak of Acute Gastro Enteritis (ACE).. Over 25 people had fallen ill; six were undergoing treatment in Goalpara Civil Hospital.. On arrival, the Medical Officers of the Boat Clinic visited the patients at their homes.. On investigation, it was found that people were drinking contaminated water with water pumps located just 3-5 feet away from unhygienic toilets with high seepage possibilities.. The patients were given necessary treatments by the MOs which included administration of drips and monitoring every 15-20 minutes.. An awareness talk on health, hygiene and clean drinking water was delivered by Sanjay Sharma.. The Community Workers demonstrated the use of halogen tablets for purifying drinking water.. The tablets were also distributed to all family heads.. This was an on call camp, the boat clinics responding to the need of the hour and speaks largely about the effectiveness of the programme.. IMNCI Training:.. Training of community health workers of C-NES from four districts viz Dhubri, Barpeta, Nalbari and Morigaon were held at the district training centre of Assam Medical College and Hospital in June, 2009.. 24 participants underwent the training.. IMNCI strategy encompasses a range of interventions to prevent and manage five major childhood illnesses i.. Acute Respiratory Infection, Diarrhea, Measles, Malaria and Malnutrition and the major causes of neonatal mortality – prematurity, infections and sepsis.. It explains nutrition including breastfeeding promotion, complementary feeding, micronutrients and focuses on the preventive, promotive and curative aspects.. The major components of this strategy are:.. · Strengthening the skills of the health care workers.. · Strengthening the health care infrastructure.. · Involvement of the community.. Feedback.. Morigaon: Jamila Smiles.. At Morigaon’s Sandhakati-I char, the health team detected a 14 year old Jamila Khatun with congenital cleft lips and advised her family about the necessity of a corrective surgery to rectify the deformity, informing them about hospitals where the surgery would have been done free of cost.. The next month (August 2009), the team was delighted to find the girl having undergone the surgery and her smile restored.. The parents expressed their gratitude to the health team for bringing to their lives a renewed sense of hope.. Nalbari: Timely intervention.. During a return journey, after a camp at Borlipar, Nalbari, the health team was stopped by desperate villagers at Bhakatarpam, to treat an unconscious 18 month old child, Abdul Ali (S/O villager Jainal Haque).. Abdul had slipped from the riverbank into the Brahmaputra.. The team visited the child’s home.. The Medical Officers of the Boat Clinic examined the child and gave him suitable medicines.. After half an hour of the team’s arrival, the child regained senses much to the relief of the family who thanked the team profusely.. Sonitpur: Positive Motivation.. At Sonitpur’s Lanke Char, 24 year old Fozilla Begum was the first from her area to have an institutional delivery in Tezpur’s Kanaklata Civil Hospital.. A beaming Fozilla says, “I was motivated by the Boat Clinic’s health team and my joy knew no bounds when I delivered a baby girl and also availed of the monetary benefits provided by the government for the same” She adds “But for the health team I would have never known about these government incentives”.. Barpeta: A veteran speaks.. 90 year old Abu Kalep, the oldest resident of Barpeta’s Muwamari char silently watched the proceedings of the Boat Clinic health camp in his char.. He said that he had voted during the first general elections of India but had unfortunately, not seen any developmental activities reaching his area.. He added however on a positive note, “I am happy to witness some change for the better with the Boat Clinic intervention during my lifetime.. Most of us had not earlier seen a doctor.. Tinsukia: Meeting Challenges.. 1.. A severely (post menopausal) bleeding patient, Shyamanti Pegu was brought to the health camp at Moinapara in Tinsukia.. The patient had been bleeding since the past four days but her extremely poor family had no means to bring her to mainland for better treatment.. After three hours of effort, Dr.. Palash Jyoti Mishra, the Medical Officer with ANMs, Dipa Doley and Rupali Dutta were able to stop the bleeding (which would surely have proved fatal for the patient) by injecting adequate doses of Ranitidine and Dicyclomine, giving her adequate doses of Ethamsylate (oral tablet) and putting her on IV drip with RL.. In the subsequent camp held here, Shyamanti, accompanied by her husband, came to the camp and expressed gratitude to the health team.. At a camp at.. Laika Phasidia,.. a dehydrated Dimbeswar Regon with severe diarrhea was brought to the health camp in a bicycle.. After two hour of treatment including administration of IV drips and monitoring, the patient recovered and was able to walk back.. Bangshidhar Doley, a daily wage earner from Madhupur was found severely anemic- his hemoglobin percentage recorded in a camp at Madhupur was a mere 2.. 2 gram %.. After being treated by the Tinsukia Boat Clinic in three subsequent camps (within a month and half) his HB% improved to 9.. 4%.. Teachers Training.. C-NES has been implementing an education initiative since February 2008 with UNICEF support that of up scaling education with reference to school dropouts in the saporis of Dibrugarh.. The education initiative has been further upscaled to include Lakhimpur district since May 2009.. With the help of local communities and community workers, five Bridge Course and four feeder schools have been set up in Telahi Bihpuria Block in Lakhimpur district.. Training programmes for teachers are regularly held to provide updated methods of teaching, teaching approaches, reading enhancement and school library management.. In July 2009, trainings were held at both the districts.. At Dibrugarh, it was a five day training with eight teachers attending and at Lakhimpur it was a three day one with eleven teachers present.. The training was meant for all teachers including Government LP schools, Bridge Course and Feeder schools in the saporis of both districts.. Working Together.. The educational and the health team work together.. The medical team conducts monthly health check ups along with supplying Vitamin-A supplements and de-worming.. During the summer months most children are found suffering from worms, cough, eczema and headaches.. The health team provides them the required medicines.. 24 July 2009 Meeting with Union Health Minister, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Member, Planning Commission, Sayeda Hamid.. 27/28 July 2009 – Workshop on “Governance and Security: India’s North East and Bangladesh” at the Academy of Third World Studies at Jamia Millia Islamia University.. 31 July 2009- Meeting with Mizoram Chief Minister, Lal Thanhawla at Delhi.. 7 August 2009 – First lecture at Jamia Millia Islamia University on “State and the North East” An Overview: The principal issues.. 17 August 2009- Task Force Meeting at Almora.. 10 September 2009 – Meeting with VC, Jamia Millia Islamia University.. 11 September 2009 Second series of lecture on NE.. The theme: The State and People: conflicts.. 15 September 2009- Meeting with Sikkim Chief Minister, Pawan Kumar Chamling at Delhi.. 22/23 September 2009- Attends seminar on ‘Women in Conflict Zones: Survivors and Peace Makers’ Speaks on, How can women s voices be brought into the peace process Organized by.. Women’s Feature Service (WFS) and The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 6) : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra (Vol: 6).. | June 9, 2009 |.. (For the quarter April June 2009).. As the impact of Cyclone Aila showed, we as a nation are ill-prepared and equipped to deal with disasters and calamities.. This is especially true of our political leadership and the government structures which are the first responders to such a crisis.. Despite all the talk about disaster planning and various plans being developed by the states and the Centre, when the test comes, we are really found wanting.. This is especially unfortunate since there is a National Disaster Management Authority, headed by the former chief of army staff, Gen.. NC Vij, with a team of officials, specialists and former army generals and police chiefs as members.. One does not hear about the role of the NDMA although it is functional and has in fact prepared a charter of programmes which would equip state and district administrations, as well as panchayats, civil society groups and academics as well as professionals to actively address problems when they arise.. Yet, these charters, which have been published in nicely bound manuals, have not caught the attention of the public or of the media nor even of the state governments, which are the key players in a disaster scenario.. I say this as a member of the national Advisory Council of the NDMA.. The reason is not far to seek there needs to be a systematic approach that enables the media to understand the issues and focus on them in a simple and clear manner instead of blowing them up or focussing only on one aspect or the other.. Partly the media is to blame for this situation and its own lack of knowledge it has a very short attention span: barely is one crisis over, then it moves, with cameras flashing, news channels running and headlines booming, to the next problem to feed a hungry public.. But there is time for better preparedness both on the side of administration at all levels as well as the media.. The media is always requiring sources for information, good sources make for good stories.. And there are few better than the NDMA as far as disaster preparedness and handling are concerned.. Without proper research, there cannot be coherent and clear reporting; without understanding the core of the problems and how to deal with it and reach relief swiftly and effectively as well as on a sustained basis to the affected populations, politicians and administrators will run into a storm of public fury as the West Bengal Chief Minister realized.. There is no need for vulnerable populations to be devastated time and again because of the ineffectiveness and ill preparedness of governments.. NGOs and media will also have to gear up now to meet the oncoming burst of floods and high water in Assam as well as the landslides and property damage that will occur in the hills, caused death and destruction all around.. What is required therefore is for the NDMA to move into high gear to enable the local governments and organizations as well as partner and train local communities to prepare for the problems so that the people are better prepared to meet the onslaught of floods than they have been in the past.. I am not even sure if many in Assam are aware that there is a National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) Battalion (located in Guwahati, near the airport) which is basically the Border Security Force there.. This group s unit in West Bengal did excellent work during the Aila disaster.. It needs to be activated ahead of time and work with local groups so that both preparedness and mitigation (which are key to disaster management) are covered adequately.. In addition, enough mental health counsellors need to be pressed into service at times of floods so that both physical and trauma issues are tackled in a rational and scientific manner.. After all, a person who has lost a relative or her or her house and property several times during a calender year will be suffering from a variation of PTSS (Post Trauma Stress Syndrome).. This is where the role of the boat clinics that we now run in partnership with the National Rural Health Mission in 10 districts of Assam becomes even more critical we need to go beyond the normal work of immunization campaigns, treatment and health check ups which our teams are doing wonderfully for tens of thousands of poor and marginalized people but also into new areas with the help of specialists and in partnership with organizations such as the NDMA.. UNICEF Documentary on Akha.. C-NES’ partnership with UNICEF began in July 2006 through Akha, “the Ship of Hope in the Valley of Floods,” to provide health services, training and awareness on health, sanitation, livestock care and education to the poor and marginalized in the river islands of the Brahmaputra in Dibrugarh district and was responsible for the surge in medical coverage, health check ups and treatment of pregnant women.. In May 2009, a UNICEF team visited Aichung sapori, in Dibrugarh district for shooting a documentary film on the Akha outreach even as a regular monthly camp was being conducted.. In spite of a heavy downpour the night before and an overcast sky, the camp as well as the shooting went off smoothly with community support and participation.. Shots were taken of the health camp, a bridge course school (Part of C-NES’ education programme with UNICEF support) and a mock emergency exercise by the boat crew and community workers of C-NES.. C-NES’ partnership with UNICEF is important in terms of sustainability of the health outreach programme, design of implementation, capacity building and training as well as the education outreach programme for children who have dropped out or never been at school in Dibrugarh and Lakhimpur districts.. Solar ILR installed.. Solar Ice Line Refrigerators (ILR)donated by UNICEF for the three Boat Clinics of upper Assam - Akha in Dibrugarh, Swaminathan in Tinsukia and Shahnaz in Dhemaji being installed at Boat Clinic Akha.. UNICEF has recently donated Solar Ice Line Refrigerators (ILR) and tents for the Boat Clinics.. The ILRs have been installed in the three Boat Clinics of upper Assam Akha in Dibrugarh, Swaminathan in Tinsukia and Shahnaz in Dhemaji and will lead to an improved performance of the immunization programme.. C-NES Trustee visit Boat Clinics.. Mr Chaman Lal (standing middle in white full shirt), the Dibrugarh Boat Clinic Team  ...   return journey after a camp at Laika Phasidia( Tinsukia district), the boat clinic was beached in the shallower part of the river.. The team spent a disturbed night at the boat.. Early the next morning, enthusiastic villagers, helped move the boat out.. The Health Team has managed to strike the right chord with the locals with regular health care services who in return, offer unstinted support to the team.. Health Mela.. Women queue outside C-NES cubicle at the Distrct Health Mela waiting for a check up.. The team conducted check ups of 178 patients- the highest by any of the participating groups.. Medical Officer, Dibrugarh Boat Clinic, Dr BC Bora attending to patients at the C-NES booth in the District Health Mela,2009.. The Dibrugarh (Boat Clinic) Health Team participated in the District Health Mela 2009 held at the Bindhakata Community Hall in Dibrugarh.. There was a long queue of patients at the C-NES stall.. The team conducted 178 check ups (of the total 740 patients at the Mela), the highest conducted by any of the participating groups.. Bullock Cart for team.. The Boat Clinic introduced in Sonitpur district from March 2009 has become popular with the locals.. The Health team is met with enthusiasm in each new village.. During recent visits to the remote villages of Kheseri Topu and Pub Lengbhanga to conduct health camps, local villagers- Muzibur Ali and Mohidul Islam provided their bullock carts to transport medicines, vaccines and equipment for the team as the village was at a distance of about 3 kms away from the river bank where the boat clinic was anchored.. They.. expressed their gratitude to the team.. Jorhat Boat.. Local carpenters/ boat builders beginning the construction of the Jorhat Boat at Majuli for the districts Boat Clinic programme.. The Boat is donated by Oil India Ltd.. The Oil India donated Jorhat Boat for the district s Boat Clinic programme is slowly taking shape at Majuli, the world s largest river island.. The Oil India Limited supported Boat, for the Jorhat Boat Clinic is slowly taking shape.. The boat is being constructed at Majuli, the world’s largest river island, with local carpenters, boat builders and raw materials.. This donation by OIL was part of its golden jubilee celebration this year.. The boat, on completion will be 75 ft long, 15 ft wide and like the earlier Boat Clinics will have provisions for an OPD, cabins for medical staff, laboratory, kitchen, toilets and crew quarters.. It will also be equipped with a generator, water tank and powered by a 120 hp engine.. A hired boat is now conducting the Boat Clinic at Jorhat district, which got underway in January 2009.. Boat Clinic Feedback.. Santa Das aged 70, from Erahuti sapori in Tinsukia was suffering from acute hypertension.. After attending the boat clinic health camps the last one year, his condition has improved with regular medicines/ treatments.. His community is happy with the health intervention.. Sankhadhar Doley, a teacher and social worker in Tinsukia’s Amarpur Sapori appreciates the health intervention in his remote village.. He has yet to miss a single camp, as an active member, helping out in conducting the camps and involving the local community.. Mogen Missong, an elderly Mishing community leader from Dibrugarh’s Aichung sapori, is” very happy” with the health camps in his remote village.. “Earlier we had to spend a whole day to even reach the nearest health centre,” he added.. Galung Pegu, the village headman of Lakhimpur’s Kankan sapori was pleased to see the Boat Clinic.. “This is the first ever such health intervention here and my community will give full support to the health team” he assured the team members.. CCA Workshop at Nowgong.. Participants at the workshop on Community Conserved Areas of North East India at Nowgong Girls College.. (Bhaswati Goswami from C-NES sixth from left.. ).. Community Conserved Areas (CCAs) play a significant role in the conservation of biological diversity.. In the last few years the north east region has attracted both national and international attention for numerous conservation efforts by local communities.. In this context a workshop on Community Conserved Areas (CCAs) of North East India was organized by Kalpavriksh, Biodiversity and Conservation Programme and Winrock International India in May 2009 at Nowgaon Girls College, Nowgoan, Assam.. C-NES’ Bhaswati Goswami participated in the workshop and gave an overview of the organization’s dolphin conservation project, and its many achievements at the workshop.. This project supported by Ford Foundation has reached completion in March 2009.. Also speaking at the workshop, Dr V Darlong from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) highlighted the need to have an informative directory of leading NGO’s of the region and suggested that a “creditable organization” like C-NES can become the nodal agency for such organizations in the region.. Education.. C-NES has been implementing an education initiative since February 2008 with UNICEF support that of up scaling education with reference to school dropouts in the char/saporis of Dibrugarh.. Children who are dropouts have been identified in the project location.. The thrust of the project is on including children from all social groups to mainstream education, working with the community to generate ownership of schools and encouraging community engagements in activities relating to schools and education.. The project upon completion of a year has seen a positive response from the local communities who have begun to understood the importance of education and have accordingly started primary level feeder schools in their saporis where students can regularly attend classes.. This year(2009) three Upper Primary feeder schools in Harlowa Balua, Lowkiwali and Mohmora sapori were set up with the help of local communities.. The education initiative has been further upscaled to include Lakhimpur district.. Achievements.. The year old education project has been largely responsible for parents beginning to understand the importance of education, especially for the girl child.. A series of awareness programmes have led to unprecedented growth of an educational environment.. Through a series of training, teachers have been imparted with up dated methods of teaching thereby making learning more interesting and fun for the children.. Vocational training to girls have been provided to make them self employed in future.. Sarba Siksha Abhigyan has also provided necessary requirements like free textbooks and resource persons for the teachers training programme for implementing this project.. The educational coordinator has regular interactions with the children and the school management committee.. Sports goods were distributed recently among the students by the educational coordinator.. Working together..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra (Vol:5) : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra (Vol:5).. | April 21, 2009 |.. (For the quarter January March 2009).. My daughter Meghna and I have suffered a deep personal tragedy with the passing of Minal.. The following is the piece I wrote for the Assam Tribune on 18 April 2009, an expression of how much we depend upon our closest ones to sustain our lives and inspiration.. They are also our best critics and best friends.. Without them our lives would be unfulfilled and empty….. And are.. Minal Hazarika: a tribute.. Minal was a daughter-in-law of Assam.. But to many of us, she was far more than that – wife and mother, companion and friend, engineer, a brilliant organizer and investor, inveterate traveller and foodie who excluded warmth, vibrancy, affection and a sense of indestructibility.. A Mumbai girl, she made no secret of her love of the city and every bit of it; initially, she did not particularly enjoy Delhi although she made her home there because I was there but then she developed an enormous circle of friends and professional associates.. She travelled frequently to Assam and was a huge hit with all my large circle of relatives, especially the younger cousins, who she was able to strike an instant rapport with.. Minal valued my work and the North-east, but she also spoke her mind – she thought that many of us were impractical with our political and economic demands.. She would, with precise and comparative logic, puncture many theories because she was deeply concerned about the hell on earth that we were making for our people in a land of great beauty and resources.. A Gujarati Jain and a vegetarian, Minal was an electrical engineer by training, a media analyst by choice and a deeply compassionate person, especially towards those who were deprived or challenged, by nature.. We worked together, in my early journalism days in Bombay in the mid-1970s, in the weekly magazine Himmat.. Minal organised the Viewers’ Forum, a unique network that took in various class groups across the country based on gender sensitivity and enabled them to critique serials, news programs and advertisement campaigns.. These had an impact on the way producers and script writers would approach their subjects and she has participated actively in the development of a broadcasting code of conduct.. Although not formally trained in the media, she used her formidable intellectual skills and organizing abilities, honed to a point by her engineering background, to press her points forcefully, with logic and clarity.. A very important part of her later work and life, given her basic compassion, was to work with specially challenged children and enable them to find their niche especially in visual media.. She developed a network of children who were encouraged to make films on their interests: this may not sound unusual but if I was to explain it better, these were children who in many parts of Assam and the North East would be regarded as physically and mentally incapable of coping with even “normal” schooling.. She saw that spark and potential in each person.. We had just celebrated her 56th birthday with her three sisters and brothers-in-law on a wonderful journey through Karnataka after which we took what was our last flight together to Guwahati from Delhi on a crisp January morning.. Yet it seems a lifetime ago.. We had gone to attend my cousin’s marriage.. What was a happy event – there was dinner at the marriage home which Minal brightened up with her usual laughter and energy — turned into a nightmare which has devastated us.. Later that night, we rushed her to the Guwahati Neurological Research Centre suffering from a severe cerebral stroke.. That was the beginning of a nearly three month battle to recover from the aneurysm and the infections that harmed her.. After a few days at GNRC, we flew her to Sir Gangaram Hospital in Delhi.. Minal became well enough to leave by the last week of March and we took her to a nursing home near our home that we were familiar with; it was a decision that the doctors and all of us had felt was the best next step since she was now eating semi-solids, had begun physiotherapy and then could be well enough to then be transferred home.. That was not to be: the infections which were hiding under the cover of medicines suddenly resurged and they defied her resistance as well as our prayers and the efforts of the doctors.. These past days, we have been overwhelmed by the words of support and affection from across the world and across the country, a reflection of the lives she touched with sensitivity and care.. – Sanjoy Hazarika.. Boat Clinics reach out to more districts.. Enthusiastic children at the inaugural health camp in Nalbari on 18 march, 2009.. The Jorhat Boat Clinic being inaugurated by Joydeep Baruah, Distict Programe  ...   part of the annual sports and cultural meet in the sapori schools of Dibrugarh district.. The running competition for girl at the sports meet.. Under the initiative an annual sports and cultural meet in the sapori schools of Dibrugarh district was organized for the first time from 20 to 23 January, 2009 with support from the local community.. This was an entirely new experience for the children who thoroughly enjoyed themselves.. More than 90 of them participated in athletics events and indigenous games.. Football and cricket matches were also organized along with hand writing competitions.. Cricket is a popular game in the saporis and a number of villagers came to watch the match, the two teams for which were accordingly named “C-NES” and “UNICEF”.. The local community appreciated this gesture by C-NES and UNICEF for their children.. Snacks, chocolates and fruits were distributed among the children and villagers and prizes were distributed to the winners on the occasion.. The education initiative has been further upscaled recently to include Lakhimpur district.. From Left: ADB s Consultant, Arvind Kumar, Rural Development Specialist, Makiko Watanaber, Manik Boruah, Programme coordinator of C-NES on way to Japoripathar village, Dibrugarh as part of the two month pilot project on Disaster risk management in the flood prone areas of Golaghat and Dibrugarh district.. Arvind Kumar, ADB s consultant and Manik Boruah, Project Coordinator from C-NES (sitting right) interacting with the local community at Japoripathar village at Dibrugarh as part of the pilot project on Disaster risk management.. A two months pilot project which the Asian Development Bank is partnering with C-NES on community based Disaster Risk Reduction in the flood prone areas of Golaghat and Dibrugarh district got underway from 14 March 2009.. C-NES’ Manik Boruah, who has accordingly been appointed Programme coordinator and Bhaskar Saud as Researcher for the Project, made an initial visit to these two districts for surveying/selecting the pilot villages with ADB’s Makiko Watanabe, Rural Development Specialist and Consultant, Arvind Kumar.. Participation in the Dibru Saikhowa Festival.. The Tinsukia health team participated in the Dibru-Saikhowa Festival at Guijan during the first week of January 2009 on an invitation from the District Health Society, Tinsukia.. The district administration, Tinsukia in collaboration with DRDA conducted this Festival for the first time, on the banks of the Brahmaputra.. There was a stall for first aid and emergency services where doctors from the Boat Clinic with paramedical staff demonstrated their services.. 9.. Health camp with Forest department.. In January 2009, the Tinsukia Boat Clinic conducted a camp at Erashuti in collaboration with the Forest Department to attend to the villages lying on the fringes of the forest areas.. The health team provided the technical support and the forest department provided the medicine, conveyance and food.. 10.. Health Team joins in festivity.. Through continuous visits and regular interactions the health teams have become familiar with the local communities who now have confidence and trust in the team.. During a regular visit to Laika Phasidia/Rigbi for a health camp the Tinsukia team joined in the celebration of the the.. Ali ai Lrigang,.. the.. festival of the dominant community here, the Mishings.. The village was in a festive mood with the ‘.. Aoinitom.. ’, the traditional song resonating everywhere.. It was a memorable experience for the team who got a lot of invitations to visit individual homes.. The team visited the home of Debokanta Regon who has been helping them in conducting the camps.. “A River’s Story” at North East Film Festival.. The documentary film “A River’s Story- The quest for the Brahmaputra” directed by noted film Director, Jahnu Baruah with the script written by Sanjoy Hazarika, was screened at the North-east Film Festival from Jan 2, 2009 showcasing 34 films- including documentaries, short features and full length feature films from the region at the Shilpagram auditorium near Sankardeva Kalashetra.. The event was organized by the Assam State Film (Finance and Development) Corporation under the aegis of the North east Zone Cultural centre, Dimapur.. The film traces the origin of this mighty river from a tiny stream in the Tibetan Plateau to the time it joins the Bay of Bengal brilliantly capturing the many communities and cultures on its banks.. New Book by Sanjoy Hazarika.. Sanjoy Hazarika’s.. latest book.. The State Strikes Back: India and the Naga Insurgency.. has recently been published by East West Centre, Washington DC, USA.. His co-author is the prominent Naga writer Charles Chasie.. This is part of the East West Centre’s Policy Studies series which includes studies on Burma, Southern Thailand, and Aceh and two other areas in the north east of India.. Hazarika and Chaise have studied the draconian Armed Forces Special Powers Act, and its impact in the area.. This is Hazarika’s seventh book and the second book in the past few months.. The earlier book was published in 2008 by Penguin “.. Writing on the Wall: Reflections on the North-east..

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  • Title: By the Brahmaputra (Vol:3) : Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES)
    Descriptive info: By the Brahmaputra (Vol:3).. | November 5, 2008 |.. (For the quarter July -Sep 2008).. The Gangtok brand.. Travel anywhere in the North-east and we find long stretches of city roads littered with empty plastic food packets, cigarette stubs, “disposable” but very eco-unfriendly plates and glasses (from some binge) and food waste and other rubbish.. This makes a very strong and negative impression on visitors from outside and it is most visible in cities like Guwahati where rubbish bins are overflowing and the streams are polluted beyond measure.. The river banks are used for washing and defecation, leading to greater destruction of our environment as well as harm to the health of downstream communities.. This is in sharp contrast to impressions of Gangtok.. A visit to Sikkim’s capital left me and a number of others from different parts of the country who had come for the first Academic Council meeting of the new Sikkim University amazed by its utter cleanliness.. The State may not be the most rapidly developing part of the world but in terms of basic governance and people-friendly approaches, it appears to have few peers.. I have traveled in Sikkim and even trekked there and found villages at 11,000 feet which have running water and electricity as well as mobile connectivity.. There are cobbled footpaths connecting villages and homesteads.. Even one or two of these services are hard to come by in large parts of urban and rural Assam, not even in Guwahati.. In Gangtok I looked hard for the ubiquitous plastic litter that flutters along the edges of roads and buildings everywhere in this country.. Not one scrap on the roads, and the central MG Road is now a 24-hour bright and peppy pedestrian zone with music playing, restaurants, shops and hotels and a very friendly ambience.. All the hotels are full as are the markets.. I walked down to my hotel on a lonely hill slope well past 11 pm; the air was crisp and the solitude was comfortable, there was little traffic so one could walk quite easily on the roads.. There are blemishes, of course – during walks through the town, I noted that some of the streams had plastic garbage – not visible and quite unhealthy.. The approach to Gangtok, a national highway that snakes across the lower Himalaya from the plains of West Bengal, is one of the shabbiest and worst roads it has been my misfortune to travel on – in terms of traffic, broken stretches, sinking stretches and dust.. We can complain bitterly about the Guwahati-Shillong road; but it’s still far better.. Yet, the friendly atmosphere of Gangtok is engaging because the people are open and welcoming, not just the hoteliers and tour operators or shop keepers; it is an approach that the rest of the North-east could learn from, instead of taking attitudes of constant confrontation and bandhs and strikes that are enough to scare people off.. What we need is the “Sikkim brand” of hospitality and approach to cleanliness, certainly in public places.. And to emulate them in the use of paper carry bags.. Workshops at Dibrugarh.. The Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES) organized two back-to- back workshops at Dibrugarh: the first on “The Look East Policy (LEP) with perspectives from the North East and South East Asia and a special focus on the Green Economy and Cultural connectivity” on Sep 5 and the second on” Infrastructure Development, with a focus on new technologies and energy” on the following day, September 6, 2008.. A number of eminent persons drawn from various states of the North East Region and outside took part in these workshops including Shri Falguni Rajkumar, Secretary NEC, Shri Bhaskar Baruah, Chairman Assam Sixth Pay Commission and Former Union Agriculture Secretary, Shri Sanjoy Hazarika, noted writer and Managing Trustee C-NES, Shri Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, columnist, anchor and author, Shri Ranjan Chatterjee, Chief Secretary, Government of Meghalaya, Lt.. Gen.. JN Mukherjee (Rtd), Former Chief of Staff , Eastern Command Dr.. Jayanta Gogoi of Dibrugarh University, Dr.. Udayon Misra, Member ICSSR, Shri PD Rai, Head of the north east operations for Basix, the Hyderabad based micro-credit firm and Colonel M Mendonca from the Second Mountain Division, Dinjan.. Speakers at the workshops which were attended by over 100 persons including senior officials, academics, officials from the armed forces, tea, industry professionals, students and civil society members expressed concern about the pressures created by continued illegal migration as well as China’s strategic interests and spoke of the need to protect small and vulnerable communities from regional and international economic pressures.. A consensus was reached that for the Centre’s much-talked about LEP to take off, rapid, time bound and visible progress in infrastructure in the region is crucial.. “These discussions should be seen as a public response to relevant parts of the NER Vision 2020 document released by the Prime Minister recently,” said Mr.. Sanjoy Hazarika, C-NES Managing Trustee.. The following are some of the recommendations suggested at the workshops.. GOI should organize a senior-level international sectoral meeting in the region, preferably at the ministerial-level with the India-ASEAN partner group.. North-east should work with the newer, upcoming economies of South East Asia and provide healthcare and English language skills to the LDC (Least Developed countries) of Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos.. Export of natural resources from the NE to be slowed and eventually stopped and only value added goods exported.. Setting up of language schools and capacity building in these areas.. Need to protect small and vulnerable communities, more so in the border areas from regional and international economic pressures, through legal and economic support.. Public Private Partnerships to be the principal driver for growth.. Participatory project planning and implementation approach.. Prioritization of the education sector could push economic growth.. A regional approach to flood management with the focus on Assam as the pivotal state through which all major roads and communications links passed.. Strong focus on eco-tourism and the power sector.. A review mechanism for all projects in the region above Rs 5 crore for greater transparency.. The workshop also witnessed a signing of an MOU between C-NES and Basix, the Hyderabad based micro- credit firm, to provide micro credit facilities to the chars and saporis frequented by the boat clinic.. Basix was represented by the head of its north east branch, Mr.. PD Rai, noted environmentalist from Sikkim and Deputy Chairman, Sikkim Planning Commission and C-NES by Mr.. In another positive development, the Rotary Club of Dibrugarh offered to provide free services to children with congenital heart diseases referred by the boat clinic health camps in Dibrugarh.. Increase in number of River Dolphins.. In the earlier newsletter we had mentioned about how C-NES’s sustained campaign for the cause of the highly endangered river dolphins brought significant results with it being declared the State Aquatic Animal by the Assam Chief Minister, Shri Tarun Gogoi on the World Environment Day on June 5, 2008.. There has been a reflection of the success of the intervention in recent days: after years, dolphins have started appearing in large numbers near Dhubri, in Lower Assam, for the first time in July 2008 – indicating that they recognized that it was safe for them to live closer to shores.. There has been an increase in number of river dolphins in Assam from 248 in 2005 to 268 in 2008 according to a survey conducted in the year 2008 by an environment group Aranyak.. Alternative Livelihoods.. The Ford Foundation funded C-NES’ project on “Promoting Conservation: Saving the Gangetic dolphins, creating livelihoods, eco –tourism” as part of a bigger study on livelihoods continues to bring about gradual economic transformation in rural groups in three districts of Assam- Kamrup, Dhubri and Tinsukia.. Small grants to SHG’s especially women have improved economic empowerment.. The SHG’s are into weaving, goat rearing, pickle making and piggery.. This is a new source of income.. A total of 57 SHG groups have been formed so far.. In September 2008, eleven (Eri) spinning machines were distributed to the women SHG, “Radhika Shanti” from Kukurmara to improve Eri yarn and production enhancement.. Dairy Programme.. Seventeen farmers from Darrang, Dhemaji and Dibrugarh were sent for 5 days training on Dairy Animal management (DAM) at NDDB Siliguri in September 2008.. Local youth and dairy farmers are being periodically trained by C-NES in these three districts in basic veterinary treatments, Dairy Animal Management (DAM) and Clean Milk Production (CMP) at the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) Siliguri, West Bengal.. Eco-Tourism.. Kukurmara in Kamrup, about 40 km west of Guwahati developed as a tourist spot by C-NES, welcomes tourists to come and view dolphins on the Kulsi, a tributary of the  ...   training will enable them to become self employed.. Teachers training.. In September 2008 a five day teachers training for bridge courses and feeder school teachers were organized by C-NES in collaboration with Assam Sarba Shiksha Abhigyan (SSA).. Eight teachers undertook the training for updated methods of teaching.. The educational and the health team work in team.. Monthly health check ups are conducted by the medical team and supply of Vitamin-A supplements and de-worming is also exclusively done for them.. Media Fellowship.. Papri Sri Raman, Special Correspondent for IANS, posted in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, has been awarded the Third Media Fellowship on Refugee Issues sponsored by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees and the Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES) for her proposed study on ‘Sri Lankan Refugees: Away from home Across the Palk Straits’ in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.. “The Tamil refugee story had fallen off the map and this was an opportunity to review it afresh and in depth,” said Mr.. Hazarika.. Raman is the third and final awardee of a UNHCR-C-NES fellowship this year.. The first fellowship on Chin Refugees of Myanmar went to Mr.. Nava Thakuria, a Guwahati-based reporter; the second on the need for a Refugee Specific Legislation in India was awarded to Ms.. Ratna Talukdar, a freelance journalist from Assam.. Talukdar’ articles have appeared in Frontline (August14-29, 2008 issue) India Together (14 September 2008) and Women’s Features Service (in October).. 10 Children of the River at German Film Festival.. Children of the River: The Xihus of Assam a 29 minute documentary film on the highly endangered river dolphins of the Brahmaputra was selected for the competitive section of the Bollywood and Beyond Indian Film festival held at Stuttgart, Germany from July16-20, 2008.. The film is produced and scripted by Sanjoy Hazarika and directed by Maulee Senapati.. Senapati was officially invited by the film festival authorities to the Stuttgart Festival where he also participated in a panel discussion session.. The film s screening was held on 19th July to a receptive audience.. This was the only film from India s North-east which was screened at the competitive section of the festival.. Sanjoy Hazarika nominated to Centre- State Panel.. C-NES Managing Trustee, Sanjoy Hazarika, was nominated to Task Force-5 on Criminal Justice, National Security and Centre-States Cooperation of the Commission on Centre-State Relations, which is headed by the former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, MM Punchhi.. Dr Jayanta Madhab, adviser to the Chief Minister of Assam, Dr.. Udayon Misra, well-known scholar and member of the ICSSR, and Patricia Mukhim, Editor of The Shillong Times were also nominated to other task force.. The committee has been formed by the Central Government to review the entire gamut of interactions and relations between the Centre and States.. All four, who are on panels as diverse as national security, social security and Centre-State Relations are members of the Board of Trustees or Advisory Council of the Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research (C-NES).. Ministry of commerce report.. C-NES undertook a one-year project (from November 2006- October 2007), Potential of trade relations between North east India, Myanmar, Bhutan, China, Bangladesh and South East Asia sanctioned by the Ministry of Commerce and Industries, Department of Commerce, Govt.. of India, aimed at improving relations and enabling the North East to look, as one of India s main trading and manufacturing hubs, to its neighborhood and beyond.. Project coordinators were Prof.. AC Sinha for Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim and Prof Udayon Misra for Assam.. The researchers were Sanjib Kakoty for Meghalaya, Charles Chasie for Nagaland, Dr.. Bhagat Oinam for Manipur, Dr.. VN Chawna for Mizoram and Dr.. Rajesh Dev for Tripura.. The study report was submitted to the Ministry on the first week of July, 2008 after presentation to an inter-ministerial review committee by senior officials.. Peace Award to Sanjoy Hazarika.. Sanjoy Hazarika was presented the Ambassador for Peace Award by the Universal Peace Federation at a Conference on International Leadership organized by the Federation at Guwahati on 30 August, 2008.. Hazarika delivered the Keynote Address at the conference.. 14.. Appointments and meetings of Managing Trustee, Sanjoy Hazarika:.. July 2008.. 2 July – Attended the function on release of the Vision 2020 Document by the Prime Minister, Dr.. Manmohan Singh at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi (was chairman of the task force to finalize the document, appointed by the Minister, DoNER).. 4 July- Meeting with Dr Balachander of Ford Foundation, India.. 4 July- Attended meeting on Sustainable Development and Arms Trade Treaty organized by Control Arms Foundation of India.. 6 July- Chaired a meeting at Tibet House to mark the birthday of HH the Dalai Lama.. 9 July- Meeting with Mani Shankar Aiyar , Minster of MDoNER.. 11 July- Task force Meeting at Planning Commission on Problems on Hill States and Hill areas, New Delhi (Member of the Task Force).. 16 July UNICEF Country Head, Karen Hulshof, to Akha at Dibrugarh along with Ms.. Jeroo Master, Head UNICEF (NE).. 17 July Discussions with Doctors of Dhemaji Boat Clinic at Dibrugarh office and DCOs.. 18 July Discussions with Doctors of Dibrugarh Boat Clinic and Education Officer, C-NES, Dibrugarh.. 21 July – Visit to Dhubri to inspect SB “Rustam” the new boat clinic for Dhubri district under construction and reviews Ford Foundation Projects on dolphin conservation.. 22 July Visits Nagarbera to review and redesign the new (hired) boat for Morigaon being built there.. 31 July- Attended release of ‘Escape from the Benevolent Zoo Keepers: The Best of Swaminomics- by Swaminathan S Aiyar at Federation House, New Delhi.. August 2008.. 1 August- Attended a lecture by Prof.. Ayesha Jalal from the Tufts University at India International Centre (IIC), New Delhi.. 4 August- Attended internship closing workshop of UNICEF at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi (UNICEF interns made presentation on AKHA outreach and implementation).. 5 August- Meeting with Ms Arati Davis and Jasmin Zaveri of SIDA at the Swedish Embassy.. 6 August- Presided over the opening academic session and delivered a lecture on Journalism at Masscom Media Pvt Ltd at Noida.. 8 August- Attended meeting on “20 years of Peoples struggle in Burma and beyond” at Indian Social Institute, New Delhi.. 8 August- Meeting with G K Pillai, Secretary, Ministry of Commerce, Govt.. 9 August- Meetings and function at Jamia Milia Islamia.. 11 August- Attended AGM and Executive Committee Meeting of CHRI.. 11 August- Dinner with Swaminathan S Aiyar.. 12 August-Meeting with Jayashree Mukherjee, Joint Secretary, DoNER.. 12 August- Dinner at British High Commission to meet Mr.. Philip Barton, Additional Director South Asia, Foreign and Commonwealth Officer.. 18 August- Spoke at meeting on Democratic state and AFSPA- Reflections on National Security, military and extraordinary law at Indian Social Institute, New Delhi.. 19 August- Meeting with selection committee of UNHCR-CNES Media Fellowship, UNHCR, for announcement of the third Fellowship.. Papri Sri Raman, Special Correspondent for IANS, posted in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, has been awarded the Third Media Fellowship on Refugee Issues.. 20 August -Meghalaya Chief Minister, Shri Donkupar Roy, Shillong.. 20 August -Meghalaya Governor Shri Ranjit Shekhar Mooshahary at Raj Bhavan.. 20 August- Meet Dr.. Sandi Syiem, San-Kar rehabilitation Centre, Member Advisory council, C-NES at San-Kar Shillong.. 30 August- Attended International Peace Conference organized by the Universal Peace Federations, delivered the Keynote Address.. “Ambassador for Peace” awarded.. September, 2008.. 5 6 September- Dibrugarh for the MDoNER supported C-NES workshops on “Look East Policy” and Infrastructure Development in association with Bharatiya Cha Parishad.. 8 September- Lecture at the Assam Institute of Mass Communication and Media Research in Guwahati.. 12 September- Attends National Seminar on “Best Practices Promotion through Social Works” at the Lakhimpur Girls College where, gave a lecture on “Inclusive Growth, Inclusive Governance and Inclusive Peace.. ” Introduction screening of “Children of the River: the xihus of Assam” at the college auditorium.. 15 September- Attended the inaugural of the Indian Chamber of Commerce, keynote and DoNER organized North East Business Summit at Guwahati.. 18 September- Met Prof.. Mushirul Hasan.. VC of Jamia Milia Islamia, New Delhi.. 19 September- Attended workshop” China and India: The Institutional Roots of Differential Performance” at IIC, New Delhi.. 20 September- Meeting with Ajai Shukla of NDTV.. 22 September – Lecture on Armed Forces Special Powers Act of 1958(AFSPA) at JNU, Periyar.. Hostel.. 26 September- Chaired, Governing Board Meeting of CSE at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi.. 26 September- Attended farewell of Dr Balachander of Ford Foundation, screened brief part of the “Children of the River: the xihus of Assam” film.. 30th September- Attended the North Eastern Regional Workshop on Criminal Justice, National Security, Centre-State Cooperation and Decentralized Planning and Governance at Shillong on September 30 and October 1, 2008, at, Task Force meeting, centre State Relations..

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  • Archived pages: 203