Ganga Initiative Brings Culture Into New Asian Trade Routes

By Kalinga Seneviratne

This article is the 23rd in a series of joint productions of Lotus News Features and IDN-InDepthNews, flagship of the International Press Syndicate.

BANGKOK (IDN) – A recent conference at Thammasat University in Bangkok brought together Indian and Southeast Asian scholars to discuss re-building cultural links along two major rivers in Asia – the Ganges and the Mekong – that in ancient times provided transport links to build great civilizations influenced by Hindu and Buddhist philosophies and promote cultural flows.

The celebration of the New Year April 14 in the region based on astrology and harvesting cycle epitomizes these cultural links.

Continue reading “Ganga Initiative Brings Culture Into New Asian Trade Routes”

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SE Asia’s ‘Environmental’ Monks Need International Support

By Kalinga Seneviratne

This article is the 22nd in a series of joint productions of Lotus News Features and IDN-InDepthNews, flagship of the International Press Syndicate.

BANGKOK (IDN) – A 76-year old Buddhist monk living on his own in his forest monastery in North-eastern Thailand has appealed for international help after receiving death threats from illegal loggers according to a report in Bangkok Post.

Continue reading “SE Asia’s ‘Environmental’ Monks Need International Support”

Australians Mobilise to Stop Indian Coal Project

By Kalinga Seneviratne

SYDNEY (IDN) – A peoples’ movement is gathering steam across Australia to stop a project by an Indian company to establish Australia’s biggest ever coal mining project that is supposed to create 10,000 jobs in a remote region of northern Queensland.

The protest movement – which distrusts politicians – argues that Australia needs to cut greenhouse gas creating coal exports rather than opening more mines. Continue reading “Australians Mobilise to Stop Indian Coal Project”

Sustainable Livelihoods Behind Street Vending in Thailand

By Kalinga Seneviratne

KHAOSAN, Bangkok (IDN) – When people talk about sustainable development there is rarely any mention of the many street vendors who make a living on streets in Thailand, as across the rest of Asia.

Even attempts to stop them doing business – like the unsuccessful year-long attempt by the governor of Bangkok to clean the city’s streets of street vendors – passes unnoticed in the media. Continue reading “Sustainable Livelihoods Behind Street Vending in Thailand”

‘Smart Farms’ Making Thai Agriculture Sufficient and Sustainable

By Kalinga Seneviratne

This article is the 20th in a series of joint productions of Lotus News Features and IDN-InDepthNews, flagship of the International Press Syndicate.

CHANTHABURI, North-East Thailand (IDN) – Thai farmers are going back to basics under a “Smart Farms” formula supported by modern information communication technology (ICT) integrated into a Buddhist concept of ‘sufficiency economy’ to make the kingdom’s lifeblood – agriculture and its small-scale farmers – sustainable into the foreseeable future. Continue reading “‘Smart Farms’ Making Thai Agriculture Sufficient and Sustainable”

Thai Doctor Creating Multi-Faceted Approach to Sustainable Development

By Kalinga Seneviratne

CHANTABURI, North-East Thailand (IDN) – A passionate, socially conscious doctor in this rural farming community in the north-east of Thailand is working with a school for marginalised children, supported by a foundation set up by Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, the second daughter of late King Bhumibol who died in October 2016.

The school aims at empowering the students to break into the medical field through an unconventional career path that is providing a multi-faceted approach to addressing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Continue reading “Thai Doctor Creating Multi-Faceted Approach to Sustainable Development”

Sustainability Is Developing Community From Within

By Kalinga Seneviratne

NAMOKANDA, West Bengal, India (IDN) – Six years ago this remote village of 130 households about 80 km from Santiniketan – the hometown of famous Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore – was a small picturesque village community surrounded by paddy fields, but without a sustainable development concept. Continue reading “Sustainability Is Developing Community From Within”