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La voce di India e Pakistan - il bollettino di Propoor.org 6/03

Le newsletter di Aprile Maggio e Giugno da uno dei maggiori siti di sviluppo per la regione Indo-pakistana

PROPOOR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER

================================

Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It’s a
relationship between equals. Only when we know our own darkness well can we be
present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognize
our shared humanity. –Pema Chodron

ANNOUNCEMENTS …

=====================================

By popular demand, Anant’s trip report from the GKP Rome conference is now
online at: http://propoor.org/pub/rome.html

Later this month, Rish Sanghvi will be representing ProPoor and CharityFocus at
a conference in Malaysia. The theme of the conference is about leveraging
technology for social upliftment. Stay tuned for more!

FEATURED SIGN OF LIGHT …

=====================================

Anasuya Sengupta thought she was done with her share of fame. Eight years ago,
first lady Hillary Clinton had read her poem titled “Silence” in a public talk;
the poem was about breaking the silence of women around the world. But now,
Senator Hillary Clinton has included that poem in her best-selling memoirs book
– ‘Living History’!
http://charityfocus.org/php-bin/qad.php?n=433

HIGHLIGHTS FROM DAILY DEVELOPMENT NEWS …

=============================================

THE WINDS OF CHANGE

Do women need development or does development need women? A visit to 350-odd
villages of Andhra Pradesh will give you an insight into the intensity of the
reality.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=479

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INDIA: HIV/AIDS CASES CROSS 2500-MARK IN BIHAR

The north Indian state of Bihar is showing a rapid increase in HIV/AIDS cases
with migrant workers and truck drivers being major carriers of the disease.
Senior health officials in the state capital Patna say, the number of HIV/AIDS
cases crossed 2,500 in May 2003.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=535

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DESPITE CEASEFIRE, MAOIST WRIT RUNS IN RURAL NEPAL

Maoists in the hinterland of this Himalayan kingdom continue to issue diktats
that are adversely affecting normal life, despite agreeing to a code of conduct
with the government after the January ceasefire.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=521

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AFGHAN REFUGEES CAUGHT IN A DEBT TRAP

Over half a million Afghan brick-kiln workers, most of them children, are caught
in debt traps across Pakistan and are unable to join the stream of refugees
trickling back home.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=536

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MAHARASHTRA ACCEPTS MEDHA PATKAR’S DEMAND

The north Indian state of Maharashtra has accepted the demand of Medha Patkar,
an activist leader, regarding the rehabilitation of 899 tribal families affected
by the Sardar Sarovar Dam project. The state cabinet decided that an affected
village would be rehabilitated at one place only. It would approve the Action
Taken Report before sending it to the Narmada Control Authority.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=534

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BANGLADESH: HARASSMENT OF JOURNALISTS MUST STOP SAYS AMNESTY

In yet another attack on press freedom in Bangladesh, warrants of arrest were
issued against editors of two leading dailies. This may signal a new move to
coerce journalists to refrain from publishing articles deemed critical of the
authorities, says Amnesty International.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=530

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MONSOON RAINS START TO EASE INDIA’S DROUGHT

A heatwave that scorched most of India throughout May, killing more than 1,400
people, is finally abating with the arrival of the first monsoon rains last
week. In the southern state of Andhra Pradesh, where temperatures reached a
record 51 °C late last month, the first heavy rain is expected this week.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=529

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CHALLENGES REMAIN AS PAKISTAN TRIES TO ELIMINATE CHILD LABOUR

Child labour is still widespread is Pakistan - although some studies show there
has been significant improvement - and rehabilitating and protecting working
children remains a major challenge.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=531

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GLOBAL ECONOMIC PROSPECTS AND THE DEVELOPING COUNTRIES
In the face of uncertainties in the global environment, Global Economic
Prospects 2003 outlines steps that can be adopted by rich and poor countries to
increase growth rates and accelerate poverty reduction.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=478

PROPOOR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER

================================

Just by being what you are, other people will change … but you don’t do it
because you want to change them. You do it to make your heart free. –Don Miguel
Ruiz

ANNOUNCEMENTS …

=====================================

ProPoor is on the Executive Committee of the Global Knowledge Partnership (GKP)
Board. Anant Wadkar recently went to Rome to represent South Asia and is now
invited to be a keynote speaker in Malaysia and another conference in Geneva.
Thank you Anant for representing us so well! You can email him a word of thanks
at anant@propoor.org

Furthermore, GKP has announced a $25,000 seed grant for new or ongoing
small-scale initiatives and pilot projects:
http://www.globalknowledge.org/gkps_portal/view_file.cfm?fileid=745

FEATURED SIGN OF LIGHT …

=====================================

The mountain people had used the forests, sustainably, for their food, shelter,
medicines and fodder for animals. But one fine day, the government restricted
their access and sold licenses to fell trees to the highest bidder. When the
first loggers, from a sporting goods manufacturer, arrived to chop the trees,
Chandi Prasad Bhatt swiftly moved to action. Along with the locals, they hugged
the trees! Inadvertantly, they started the ‘Chipko’ movement and over the next
five years saved countless forests!
http://charityfocus.org/php-bin/qad.php?n=870

HIGHLIGHTS FROM DAILY DEVELOPMENT NEWS …

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WORLD DEVELOPMENT REPORT: MAKING SERVICES WORK FOR POOR

The World Development Report 2004 will investigate how countries can accelerate
progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by making services work
for poor people.Success in reaching the MDGs will depend not just on faster
economic growth and the flow of sources, but on our ability to translate those
resources into basic services, especially in health, education, water, and
sanitation. Too often, the delivery of services falls far short of what could be
achieved, especially for the poor.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=407

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PAKISTAN PEASANTS DIG IN AGAINST ARMY OFFENSIVE

Hundreds of thousands of peasants in Okara in Pakistan’s northern Punjab
province, mourned the death of Amir Ali, 60 allegedly shot by the Pakistan Army,
vowing to continue their movement for land-rights and fight Army repression.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=473

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SRI LANKA IMPROVES ITS HUMAN RIGHTS RECORD

There was an improvement in the human rights situation in the context of a
cease-fire and peace talks between the government of Sri Lanka and the
Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. However, lack of accountability remains a
serious concern, says the 2003 annual report of Amnesty International.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=468

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INDIA LOSES TRACK OF ITS BIG CATS

The way the Indian government keeps tabs on the endangered Bengal tiger is so
flawed to be nearly worthless for conservation purposes, says a new research.
The study criticises India’s use of tiger footprints to track specific cats and
calculate population size. They say that in a recent controlled test, even
experts were unable to distinguish the prints of individual tigers.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=475

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INTERNET MIRRORS ANTI-US TIDE

The US-led war on Iraq has triggered a climate of global anti-American fervor,
clearly reflected in the growth of Web sites spewing hatred on Uncle Sam.
Anti-US campaigners are actively using the Internet to voice their resentment.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=464

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WOMEN WORK THE LAND, BUT DO NOT INHERIT IT

‘Human Development in South Asia 2002′, released in the south Indian city of
Chennai recently, stresses the importance of agriculture as a development
priority. It also points out that the ever-increasing contribution of women in
the agricultural sector continues to go unacknowledged.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=461

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HILL MINORITIES FIGHT FOR JUSTICE IN BANGLADESH

Threatened by economic discrimination, Islamisation and the demographic time
bomb of Bengali colonisation, the tribals of the Chittagong Hill Tracts in
southeastern Bangladesh staged a nationwide protest, demanding Constitutional
guarantee of their fundamental rights.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=456

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TAMING KASHMIR’S COPS

In an attempt to reform the state police, the government of Indian-administered
Kashmir recently disbanded the infamous Special Operations Group, and will
confer a special honor on the force this month, though its public image remains
tarnished.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=474

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AMNESTY SAYS RIGHTS OF MINORITIES IN INDIA BEING UNDERMINED

In its annual report on the human rights record of nations, Amnesty
International has expressed concern over the growing intolerance and abuse of
minority rights in India.
Referring to the Gujarat riots, it said religious minorities, particularly
Muslims, were being increasingly targeted.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=469

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TOXINS ON TAP IN PAKISTAN

With 62 percent of the 2.4 million people of the impoverished Kasur area in
Pakistan’s northern Punjab province suffering from serious ailments caused by
industrial waste, health authorities warn that the country’s water sources are
turning into toxic cesspools.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=465

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DISEASE AND DISASTER STALK SRI LANKA

Apart from battling an outbreak of diseases and destruction of over 100 schools,
the flood-hit Sri Lankan government is preparing to evacuate over 15,000 people
threatened by landslides in 169 areas across the country.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=462

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INDIAN HIV PATIENTS MOVE COURT TO END DISCRIMINATION

Alleging denial of medical care, the Lawyers’ Collective, an Indian legal cell
has petitioned the High Court in the Indian capital, Delhi, to pressure
hospitals and healthcare workers to end discrimination against HIV positive
patients.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=457

~~~~

PROPOOR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER
================================

The fruit of silence is prayer.

The fruit of prayer is faith.

The fruit of faith is love.

The fruit of love is service.

The fruit of service is peace.

–Mother Teresa

ANNOUNCEMENTS …

=====================================

–The Citizen Base Investment Competition is for NGOs seeking to implement or
expand local resource mobilization strategies that will support their long-term
financial sustainability. In addition to prize money of Rs. 236,970 (disbursed
over two years), the winners will receive training in skill development to
implement the strategies, and mentoring and other support from the private
sector. For more email natasha_ramarthnam@vsnl.net.

–Give Foundation is conducting an online survey to understand how South Asian
communities (Indians and NRIs) respond to the idea of philanthropy. The survey
will only take about 15-20 minutes to complete, and we hope it will give us
insights into what makes people contribute more:
http://www.cross-tab.com/surveys/run/test.asp?sid=1598&Respid=1

FEATURED SIGN OF LIGHT …

=====================================

At the Aravind Eye Hospital in Madurai, India, 82-year-old Dr. Govindappa
Venkataswamy has solved the mystery of leadership: He brings eyesight to the
blind and light to the soul. Today, he runs five hospitals that perform more
than 180,000 operations each year. Seventy percent of his patients are charity
cases; the remaining 30% seek him out and pay for his services because the
quality of his work is world-class.
http://charityfocus.org/php-bin/qad.php?n=398

HIGHLIGHTS FROM DAILY DEVELOPMENT NEWS …

=============================================

SRI LANKAN FLOOD RELIEF EFFORTS FALTER

While some 500 people are feared to have been killed and 600,000 displaced in
one of the worst floods in Sri Lanka’s history, observers say skewed development
programs and uncoordinated government efforts have exacerbated the disaster.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=435

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WATER STRESS SITUATION IN FOUR INDIAN STATES

The Energy and Resources Institute in collaboration with the United Nations
Population Fund has carried out an extensive study in the four Indian villages
of Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka and Kerala to assess the impact of
growing population on water availability and quality of life.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=395

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ACTIVISTS FLAY US SUPPORT TO INDIAN TERRORISM LAW

Indian experts are concerned that the United States’ recent endorsement of India
as a partner in a global war against terrorism may give a fillip to the use of a
controversial Indian anti-terrorism law that severely threatens human rights.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=392

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BANGLADESH ARSENIC VICTIMS TO SUE UK SCIENTISTS

A High Court judge in London has given the go ahead for a trial pitting two
Bangladeshi residents against the British Geological Survey’s parent body, the
Natural Environment Research Council. The case hinges on whether the British
Geological Survey should have tested for arsenic when it was commissioned in
1991 to help improve drinking water wells in Bangladesh.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=391

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PRESIDENT, REBELS PUSH BACK PEACE IN SRI LANKA

With Sri Lanka’s President and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam rebels
displaying inflexibility barely three weeks before the crucial Tokyo donor
conference to fund reconstruction of the country’s war-torn provinces,
longstanding peace prospects have dimmed.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=388

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EFFORTS ON TO REVIVE TOURISM IN KASHMIR

Capitalising on the Indo-Pak thaw, the recently-elected government in
Indian-administered Kashmir is launching an aggressive campaign to revive its
devastated tourism industry.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=384

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AFGHANS HEAD HOME FROM SOUTHWEST PAKISTAN

Some 490 Afghan refugees headed home from Pakistan’s southwest Baluchistan
province, the largest group to return to the war-shattered country’s unruly
north this year, the United Nations refugee agency said.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=436

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NEW VULNERABILITIES IN SOUTH ASIA: TIME FOR NEW SAFETY NETS

Are South Asia’s poor losing the informal safety nets traditionally found in
family, religion, caste, village and production relations? What are the emerging
patterns as they lose access to common property resources and customary rights.
Are state and donor-driven social protection measures helping the poor?
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=396

~~~~

MYANMAR OFFICIALS RESCUE WILD ANIMALS FROM RESTAURANTS

Myanmar authorities seized hundreds of wild and endangered animals during raids
on four Yangon restaurants that serve exotic meats. The restaurant owners face
up to seven years in prison if found guilty of killing, hunting, and selling
wild and endangered animals.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=393

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BIG MULTINATIONALS IN INDIA USE CHILD LABOUR

Major corporations, including Monsanto, Unilever, Syngenta and ProAgro, are
making large-scale use of hazardous forms of child labour in cottonseed
production in India. A report commissioned by the India Committee of the
Netherlands documents the abuses and also marks the beginning of a campaign to
combat the use of child labour.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=389

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UNEMPLOYMENT SPIRALS IN RECESSION-HIT NEPAL

Over 1.5 million of Nepal’s 23.1 million population is currently unemployed. The
economic slowdown has forced several industries to shutdown, rendering thousands
jobless.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=385

In India when we meet and part we often say, “Namaste,” which means I honor the
place in you where the entire universe resides, I honor the place in you of
love, of light, of truth, of peace. I honor the place within you where if you
are in that place in you and I am in that place in me, there is only one of us.
Namaste!
–Ram Dass

FEATURED SIGN OF LIGHT (new!) …

=====================================

It is late evening and a class is in progress at a home in Pachod village of
Maharastra. The students are 12-year-olds. And so is the teacher! Kids are
helping kids attain literacy. http://propoor.org/news/?n=212

HIGHLIGHTS FROM DAILY DEVELOPMENT NEWS …

=============================================

GROUNDWATER IN INDIA: TOO UNSAFE TO DRINK

The quantity of fluoride and arsenic in the groundwater in India has reached far
and wide than was known, primarily because of over-exploitation of ground water.
Already millions of Indians are suffering from known and unknown diseases caused
by the contamination of water.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=218

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PAKISTAN GOVERNMENT BANS INDECENT WEBSITES

The Pakistan government has banned more than 500 websites for showing vulgar and
indecent material. The ban came into effect after the federal minister for IT
and telecommunications ordered officials to block websites to protect and uphold
social values.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=228

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‘ICT CAN SPUR GROWTH, BRIDGE DIGITAL DIVIDE’

The role of information and communications technologies (ICT) is popularly held
to be very critical to economic development. But there has to be greater
domestic use of ICT as an engine of economic growth, in contrast to the
production of products and services for export.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=124

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ATTACK ON IRAQ BOMBS INDIAN CARPET INDUSTRY

The American attack on Iraq has severely hit the handicrafts business in the
north Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. Nearly a million people are engaged in
handicrafts in Kashmir and a large portion of the handicrafts are exported to
the countries involved in the war.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=225

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PARTICIPATE IN CAMPAIGN TO PROTECT PEOPLE’S RIGHTS

Indian organisation, Narmada Bachao Andolan, has launched a campaign against the
decision of the west Indian state of Gujarat to raise the height of the
controversial dam on river Narmada. The organisation says this will add to the
numbers of those who have not yet been rehabilitated.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=213

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BANGLADESH MINORITIES UNDER ATTACK

An investigation by a Bangladesh human rights body, Human Rights Congress for
Bangladesh Minorities (HRCBM), into a recent attack on minorities at Gazipur in
Bangladesh finds that communal attacks have become frequent of late. Read the
HRCBM investigation into the minority attacks.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=229

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AFGHANISTAN: WORK ON FIRST HUMAN DEVELOPMENT REPORT BEGINS

Afghanistan has finally started work on its first-ever national human
development report. The report will be a massive US $200,000 project between the
Afghan government and the United Nations Development Programme.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=219

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INDIAN NGO URGES PEOPLE TO BOYCOTT US, UK GOODS

A voluntary organisation based in India has expressed its outrage against
American aggression on Iraq. It also has supported the global call for boycott
of American and British products as a non-violent resistance against aggression
and dominance.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=214

I slept and dreamt that life was joy,

I awoke and saw that life was service,

I acted and behold, service was joy!

–Rabindranath Tagore

PROPOOR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER

================================

Starting this week, ProPoor News will be delivered by volunteers at CharityFocus
(http://www.charityfocus.org). To learn more, check out our newly revamped
site:
http://www.propoor.org

FEATURED SIGN OF LIGHT (new!) …

=====================================

In 1992, a crazed, nude woman ran up and down a Chennai street under the mid day
sun. As people either gawked or walked on, two young women hugged her and took
her to their college nearby. They cleaned her, clothed her and calmed her down.
Vaishnavi and Vandana were barely out of their teens when they set out on a life
of service.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=210

HIGHLIGHTS FROM DAILY DEVELOPMENT NEWS …

=============================================

INDIA URGED TO DROP TREASON CHARGES AGAINST PEACE ACTIVISTS
The President of India has been petitioned to withdraw a case of treason
levelled against four people, including a Magsaysay award winner. The four were
arrested while staging a sit-in at Ayodhya - a north Indian town at the centre
of communal politics.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=210

~~~~

WIRED VILLAGES OF WARANA

Agrarian India re-packages its schedules, thanks to a silent IT revolution. Balu
Jadhav owns less than a hectare of land, a buffalo and a cow. He used to worry
incessantly about his son, who suffers from polio. Now Jadhav says he needn’t
worry. An IT revolution has silently swept through 70 villages in Warana,
Kolhapur district, Maharashtra. Jadhav has watched the $ 600,000 Warana Wired
Village Project change everything in these villages where livelihoods centre
around sugarcane farming and dairying.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=114

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AFGHAN WOMEN FEAR FALLOUT OF IRAQ WAR

Protest against the attack on Iraq is building up among women in Afghanistan who
are worried about its fallout on their struggle for basic rights. The protest is
being spearheaded by an Afghanistan women’s organisation, Revolutionary
Association of the Women of Afghanistan.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=203

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FROM BEEDEES TO CDS: INDIA’S RURAL KNOWLEDGE CENTRES

Rural ICT centres, if properly designed and managed, can be much more than just
‘access centres.’ They can become community owned ‘knowledge centres’ that
directly and indirectly empower people living in rural areas. This was the
conclusion reached by participants in the first South-South travelling workshop
on ICT-enabled development, organised by the M.S. Swaminathan Research
Foundation.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=109

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WHY IS AGEING AN URGENT GLOBAL ISSUE?

Growing old, once something that occurred only in ‘developed’ countries, is now
a shared benefit of development worldwide. Is it to be expected that older
people will remain excluded and poor? Can healthcare and social protection
systems support growing numbers of older people?
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=110

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PARTICIPATORY IRRIGATION MANAGEMENT IN INDIA

A project in the west Indian state of Gujarat aims at increasing efficiency and
providing equity in the use of water for irrigation. The project educates
farmers about the irrigation system and helps them repair the irrigation system
according to their needs.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=206

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PIRACY EATS UP JOBS IN PAKISTAN

A recent study in Pakistan says high level of software piracy is blocking the
software industry’s contribution to employment generation. The report, Study on
Copyright Losses in Pakistan, was released by the Arabian Anti-Piracy Alliance,
which urged the government to curb piracy.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=200

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WORLD RADIO FORUM

The World Radio Forum has been created by an international group of national,
local, community and internet radio broadcasters to strengthen the links between
all sectors for the support and promotion of radio produced for, with and by
children and youth. The Radio Forum aims to establish a position within the
spectrum of children’s media by defining core values, which champion child
rights and the role and status of children and young people within their
communities.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=57

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CRITICAL CHALLENGES IN HIV COMMUNICATION

The Panos Institute has produced a short perspective paper: “Critical Challenges
in HIV Communication”. This paper gives a brief overview of the current
situation relating to HIV/AIDS funding and decision making, together with an
account of some lessons from the past. It draws upon the online survey Panos
conducted from June to Sept 2002, as well as on interviews with a number of
donors and the experiences of the southern Panos network of offices. But the
paper presents an argument which needs further evidence and corroboration. Panos
is requesting assistance and participation in ensuring that what they say
resonates with the wider HIV and Development Communication community.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=59

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INDIAN GOVERNMENT TO MUSTER SUPPORT FOR RIVER-LINKING

The government plans to sign a memorandum of understanding with states to ensure
that the riverine rights of states are protected in the ambitious project. The
project aims to link all major rivers of the country. Environmentalists, and
sociologists have voiced strong opposition to the project.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=201

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SRI LANKAN JUNGLES SPRING BACK TO LIFE

National parks in Sri Lanka are buzzing with tourist activity once again as
peace returns to the Indian Ocean island. The parks, which were repositories of
rich wildlife including rare animals, had become battlegrounds for rebels and
security forces during the conflict.
http://www.propoor.org/news/?n=202

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LINKING PEOPLE LIVING WITH HIV/AIDS

An Indian organisation educates people affected with HIV/AIDS on better life,
nutrition, health care and death with dignity. The organisation also enlightens
people on HIV/AIDS and fights social discrimination through folk culture.
http://www.propoor.org/new/?n=174

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