ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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India and Myanmar Tangled Ties

India's reluctance to shake off her once imperial presence in Myanmar continues to cloud bilateral ties between the two countries. The United Kingdom and India, involved in the governance of Myanmar since Britain's annexation in 1885, have the grandest ambassadorial residences. But they are also the two countries who have the least influence on the rulers in Yangon. The British residence was once that of the general manager of the Irrawaddy Flotilla Company; Britain took it, and the green- walled staff compound over when the company was wound down in the 1950s. The Indian residence housed the chief agent of the Imperial Bank of India until its rebirth as the nationalised State Bank of India in 1954. In a city of grand though decaying houses, the 106-year-old residence sets it apart, despite it being marred by a huge parabolic dish, in the upper balcony, to tune into satellite television stations; is so large that it has quarters for 22 servants quarters and spacious grounds; the 'pangka' hooks can still be seen on the ceilings.

Crisis in Malaysian Indian Congress

M G G Pillai The Indian community in Malaysia is facing a crisis of confidence today because of the corruption charges levelled against the long- time president of the Malaysian Indian Congress MALAYSIA'S Indian community, descended mostly from indentured menial labour the British administration brought in from India for the rubber estates, the railways, hospitals, and public services, from about 10 per cent of its 18 million people and are consigned to the bottom of the social and economic scale: They came from what is now Tamil Nadu, in India, have had few prospects for improvement, continue to live trapped in a vicious circle of frustration, hopelessness, impoverishment. These people constitute about 85 per cent of the Indians in Malaysia, their conditions little better than that of their fathers and grandfathers, who came here as indentured labour. The rest are sons of middle-class educated migrants, of those who escaped from the poverty and impoverishment of the gutter. It is they who provide the leadership in politics, the professions, and of the Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC), a partner in the ruling National Front coalition led by Mahathir Mohamed, the prime minister, and his New United Malays National Organisation (UMNO Baru or New UMNO).

Malaysia Keeping the US at a Distance

Distance M G G Pillai Without the umbilical cord of frequent infusions of aid Washington's attempts to keep Malaysia on the straight and narrow path of subservience has not succeeded.

Thailand Habits Die Hard

Boutros-Ghali forces these countries to end subsidies. Equally, the monopoly on top posts enjoyed by Security Council and western nationals bolsters developing country criticism that they have no say at the UN. The practice has been the focus of growing resentment from developing countries, reflected in a spate of General Assembly resolutions asking the secretary-general to ensure that senior posts do not remain the "exclusive preserve of any member stated The signatories to the resolutions have not changed their ways.

Australia Moving South-East

feelings, and the resulting Labour or Liberal Democrat voting intentions were shared by many Tory supporters who were about to make a break and go for a change. But inside the ballot box wallet 'me-ism' reasserted itself, giving the Con scrvatives the very same 43 per cent of the vote they have had throughout the previous three elections.

Irritants in Malaysia-Singapore Relations

Philosophy, Brussels, 1847. I have not been able to trace the original quotation in Hansard. For the wider ideological backdrop that led to the triumph of economic liberalism, c f, F F Clairmonte, Economic Liberalism and Underdevelopment: Studies in the Dinintegration of an Idea, Bombay and London, I960.

Emerging Trade Alliances in Asia

M G G Pillai THE contretemps over an Asian trade caucus has become a bilateral conflict bet- ween the United States and Malaysia, with the United States opposing the East Asian Economic Caucus (EAEC), a downgraded version of the Malaysian proposal for a regional economic grouping. The Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) has since adopted it as an independent, subordinate institution to the Australian- proposed Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). But the United States wants only one regional group, APEC; besides it objects to any organisation which Japan would inevitably dominate and from which it would be excluded.

Elections in Sarawak Far from Free

M G G Pillai The federal National Front coalition retained power in the assembly elections in Sarawak. But the practices followed by the coalition to ensure the victory can hardly be called democratic.

MALAYSIA-Sharpening Contest for Malay Leadership

Sharpening Contest for Malay Leadership M G G Pillai After the split of the UMNO Lama in 1987, there has developed a contest for the political leadership of the Malays between the UMNO Baru of prime minister Mahathir Mohamed and the Semangat '46 party of Razaleigh Hamzah and the results of the recent by-elections to the Kelantan state assembly mark a clear setback for UMNO Baru.

MALAYSIA- Role for Non-Malays in Economy

a recession and unemployment has assumed sudor proportions. The US is clearly worried and it was known that it wished to see lower interest rates. There is also some concern at the failure to conclude the Uruguay round of trade negotiations. The G-7, however, seems to have made only modest progress in reaching understanding on these matters. It noted that there are increasing signs of economic recovery, and left it at that. On the Uruguay round, there seems to be greater determination to reach agreement; and the 0-7 leaders committed themselves to talking to each other should difficulties arise. But by implicitly linking argiculture, the thorniest of issues, to other areas (services, MALAYSIA intellectual property rights) they have managed to deflect attention from it somewhat It is anybody's guess whether there would now be a breakthrough in the negotiations on agriculture.

Malaysia s Chance

the scientific basis of its proposal. In a four-month written 'dialogue' with the irrigation department and the executive engineer of the Takari scheme, the committee elaborated its points. When a direct discussion finally took place, the engineers could find no points to dispute and had to finally ask for a more detailed plan for water distribution.

MALAYSIA

HAJI NIK AZIZ NIK MAT, a 59-year old "tok guru" (religious leader) has been sworn in as mentri besar (chief minister) of the north-eastern Malaysian state of Keldhtan after general elections in October, He heads a coalition government of which his Pan Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) is the main partner. His first few actions have suggested that the National Front (NF) state government which he replaced had been irresponsible and profligate in the eleven years it had been in power, which has put the NF government in Kuala Lumpur on the defensive.

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