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

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Behind American Politics

Behind American Politics M S Prabhakar Big Brother and the Holding Company: The World Behind Watergate, edited by Steve Weissman; Ramparts Press, Palo Alto, California;

ASSAM- Death in Barpeta

ASSAM Death in Barpeta M S Prabhakar ON January 31, 1975, The Assam Tribune of Gauhati carried a .report on Its front page, under the heading 'Over 1,000 Die of Starvation in Barpeta'. According to the report, "Over 1000 people have died of starvation in Baghbor- Manida areas of Barpeta sub-division during the last six months and approximately another 5,000 will die in the coming months if proper steps are not taken. This was disclosed by Sri Jala- luddin Ahmed, MLA, and Sri Ali Akbar Khan, Councillor, Mahkuma Parishad yesterday at Barpeta." The report went ' on to give more specific details. Four days later, The Assam Tribune of February 4 carried a contradiction issued on February 2, by Jalaluddin Ahmed. "What I stated", the MLA said in his contradiction, "was that due to six successive floods of unprecedented nature visiting that area and the erosion caused by the Brahmaputra and its tributaries a large number of people have been rendered as destitutes. While appreciating the relief measures taken by the Government of Assam and the Government of India and help given by the sympathetic people of the country there is still need for continuing relief measures." When the news first appeared on January 31, the President: of India, who, before being elevated to his present position, represented these areas in the Parliament, was due to arrive at Gauhati on the following day; and the 'contradiction' issued by the MLA was widely interpreted as being issued 'under directions'; for, the report about many starvation deaths in an area which was, til) the other day, represented by Fak- ruddin Ali Ahmed, was considered too embarrassing for the President.


Visitations M S Prabhakar THIS is not a report from Assam, nor even a report from Gauhati. In fact, Gauhati has now grown to such large proportions that one is hard put to it to recognise the old town, and it would be highly presumptuous to title a report written from the cos- setted sanctuary of a University Campus as 'A Letter from Gauhati'. Big, overcrowded, congested Gauhati is seven miles away. Even before the temporary capital came down to Dis- pur, Gauhati had grown rather chaotically. And for the past couple of years, there has been a desperate scramble for new construction, new sites; great hillsides with fantastically contoured profiles are being continuously cut to fill-in the low-lying areas; lorries making unending trips between hill and swamp; a mild shower flooding streets for hours together and, in the rainy season, whole areas under water for weeks or even months together; unimaginably overcrowded city transport. No, one can't say that one knows Gauhati.

The Politics of a Script-Demand for Acceptance of Roman Script for Bodo Language

The Politics of a Script Demand for Acceptance of Roman Script for Bodo Language M S Prabhakar The problem faced by the Bodo people is in essence the problem of all Jess developed communities when they are living with comparatively advanced groups of people under a common political system.

THE FAMINE-A Report from Dhubri

THE FAMINE A Report from Dhubri M S Prabhakar THIS is an account of a brief trip to Dhubri in the latter part of September. Newspapers in Gauhati bad proclaimed in banner headlines a disastrous situation in Dhubri in early August, but after a couple of days' scare, the panic evident in the early reports had given place to routine reporting. But even though there were no more headlines in the newspapers, one heard of accounts of large masses of people roaming the streets of Dhubri and other small towns; of corpses in the streets, on railway platforms; of rotting cadavers providing a feast to dogs and vultures; of distress sales of lands and goods at throw-away prices; of abandoned children; of women forced to sell themselves for a few paise; of shrewd political operators making small fortunes by doing the good work of refugee rehabilitation; of rackets aplenty.

THE NORTH-EAST-Report from a Khasi Village

September 14, 1974 tant students who would have volunteer- ed started wondering if the whole movement had not become a recruiting campaign for Sarvodaya. Since they were ony willing to co-operate with the Sarvodayists in a united struggle against the government and its brutal repressive machinery, and could not understand the ideology of Sarvodaya most of them ignored JP's call for volunteers. And since then be has been largely ignored.

NAGALAND-Securing for the Sovereign

party's majority, the Prime Minister chose to campaign around the slogan of stability in Uttar Pradesh. But Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat had to go under President's Rule not because the ruling party's majority was in doubt in any of these states. The improved Congress performance in Uttar Pradesh and Orissa does not even guarantee stability, leave alone any more; useful benefits.

A Triangular Relationship

M S Prabhakar Politics of Sino-Indian Confrontation by Mohan Ram; Vikas, Delhi,
MOHAN RAM's thesis of course is not very original, since he had formulated the same thesis, in a slightly different context, in two of his previous works on the Maoist trend in the OPI. But the points made in a rather general way in those books

ASSAM-More Elections

ers were invited, The employers chose to be absent There followed another meeting at the house of the local MP and there the employers agreed to pay the minimum wages. Following the agreement the strike at Dhamankar Naka and Kalyan Road was called off. The fourth meeting was called by the Labour Officer on February 13 at Durgah Road in which master weavers were also present. They also agreed to the payment of minimum wages.

The North Eastern Council Some Political Perspectives

October 6, 1973 Laws", Statesman, June, 19-20,
4 Direct Taxes Enquiry Committee, Final Report, Government of India
5 Richard A Musgrave, "In Defence of an Income Concept", 81 Harvard Law Review 44 (1967-68).

How Not to Study a Revolution

Mao's Revolution and the Chinese Political Culture by Richard H Solomon; University of California Press, (Oxford University Press, Bombay) 1971; pp xi + 604; Rs 70.

ASSAM-The Bongal Bogey

and install advanced pollution-control devices. In this respect DMCC was prepared to go very much farther than any comparable project, whether public sector or private sector, has so far been willing to go in this country. The real problem is that the level of pollution in the New Bombay area is already well above tolerable limits, as will be clear from the Table.


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