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Newsmakers 5


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The Year That Was 2010

Published in: News & Politics
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Newsmakers 5

  1. 1. News Makers<br />2010 in review<br />
  2. 2. Aung San SuuKyi<br />Aung San SuuKyi, the symbol of fight for democracy in Myanmar and across the world, was finally freed from house arrest by the Burmese junta on November 13 this year. She has remained under house arrest for almost 16 of the last 21 years beginning July 1989. The release came just days after Myanmar held its first election in two decades on November 7, in which junta backed parties won while NLD stayed away from participation. <br />Following her release, SuuKyi has called for reconciliation with the country’s military rulers, and also urged the international community to engage with Myanmar through trade ties instead of imposing sanctions, as the move would not help the Southeast Asian nation’s impoverished people. To her supporters she said "I`m very happy to see you all again," and asked them to act in “unison” to achieve genuine democracy.<br />
  3. 3. Liu Xiaobo<br />Chinese activist Liu Xiaobo was this year awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Speaking in Norwegian capital Oslo, the head of the Nobel committee described Liu as "the foremost symbol" of the human rights struggle in China. Obviously, the decision did not go down well with the Chinese regime which called Liu “a criminal who violated Chinese law”. Beijing even described the move an insult to the peace prize itself. China also urged nations to boycott the Nobel ceremony, and most nations fell in line, in a bid to not anger the Communist regime. <br />Liu was jailed last Christmas Day for subversion of state power and for being the lead author of Charter 08, a manifesto by intellectuals and activists calling for democratic reform in the one-party state. Other winners of 2010 Nobel Prizes: Chemistry - Richard F Heck, Ei-ichiNegishi and Akira Suzuki; Medicine - Robert G Edwards; Physics - Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov; Literature - Mario Vargas Llosa; Economics - Peter Diamond, Dale T Mortensen and Christopher A Pissarides.<br />
  4. 4. Successful Indian sportsperson<br />2010 was a watershed year for the India sportspersons other than the cricketers. The Commonwealth Games in New Delhi and Asian Games provided the ideal platforms for the unknown Indian athletes. <br />Ashish Kumar (Gymnastics), Krishna Poonia (discus throwing), Anil Kumar, Geeta Devi, Rajender Kumar (Wrestling), Harpreet Singh and Vijay Kumar (Shooting), RahulBanerjee, DolaBanerjee, DikipaKumari (Archery), RenuBalaChanuYumnam (Weightlifting), BajranglalTakhar (Rowing), AshwiniChidananda (Sprinter) were among the new breeds of Indian sportspersons who made India proud with their superb performances.<br />
  5. 5. A Raja: King of bad times<br />This man is in the eye of a storm ever since 2G spectrum allocation scam came into the limelight. He took over the reins of Communication and Technology Ministry in 2007 during UPA-I and continued in UPA-II as well. The case, that has become the biggest scam ever in India, is of allocating 2G spectrum licenses to a chosen few on dubious first-come-first-serve basis in 2008 on the rates of 2001, resulting in a loss of up to Rs. 1.70 lakhcrores to the national exchequer as per the Comptroller and Auditor General of India report. <br />Just when the Opposition resorted to stalling Parliament’s winter session demanding Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe into the scam which Congress has repeatedly rejected, the telephonic conversations of corporate lobbyist NiiraRadia, came to the fore in which she was heard lobbying for A Raja to get the Telecommunication portfolio, creating much furore and bringing embarrassment to the Manmohan Singh government. Eventually, Raja resigned but the tapes exposed a nebulous politician-businessman-media nexus and trapped some renowned businessen including Ratan Tata and some well known journalists in the 2g scam juggernaut. <br />Immediately after his resignation, another controversy sprung up in which Raja has been accused of influencing a Madras High Court judge for helping his family and friends grab land at very low prices. This has further led to an unprecedented war of owrds between a previous Chief Justice of India and a sitting Supreme Court judge. <br />The Supreme Court has decided to oversee the CBI and Enforcement Directorate’s probe into the gamut of spectrum allocation cases since 2001 – during NDA regime – and has come down heavily on the Centre and investigation agencioes for their lackadaisical approach. It remains to be seen how this saga of corruption and collusion comes to conclusion. BS Yeddyurappa: Always in trouble… Ever since he took over the reins of Karnataka, Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa has remained the favorite child of controversies, first for heading an undisciplined government where every MLA seemed to be following his own agenda and then for sticking to his chair even after being caught in corruption allegations and letting the corrupt off with impunity.<br />