Successful Test Firing of India’s Agni-5 Evokes No Fury

By Kalinga Seneviratne

BANGKOK (IDN) – The successful launch of the nuclear-capable intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) Agni-5 on January 18 has hardly been noticed in Asia. The western media however have given it coverage focusing on India’s ability now to strike major Chinese cities including Beijing and Shanghai.

This partly adulatory coverage is in sharp contrast to hysteria in the western media in particular when North Korea tested a similar missile on November 28, 2017. While North Korea’s tests are projected as threats to global denuclearization efforts, India’s are not. Continue reading “Successful Test Firing of India’s Agni-5 Evokes No Fury”


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”

Trump’s Asian Visit Exposes U.S.-Asia Perception Gap

By Kalinga Seneviratne

BANGKOK (IDN) – It is often said that since the end of the World War II, the United States has been the pre-eminent power in the Asia-Pacific region, providing the stability needed for the economic boom of the past 70 years.

This perception is changing, however, and has intensified especially after U.S. President Donald Trump’s infamous speech at the United Nations in September where he threatened to “totally destroy” North Korea, effectively killing 25 million people and committing the worse war crime in history.

India: Traditional Silk Weavers Losing Out To New Comers

By Kalinga Seneviratne


SUALKUCHI, Assam, India (IDN) – Silk weaving is an intrinsic part of Assamese culture and the “weavers’ village” of Sualkuchi is famous for its silk products, especially the Muga silk made from the golden thread of the assama caterpillar. Situated about 30 km from Gauhati, the state capital, tourist brochures describe this as a weavers’ paradise. But this is far from reality for the local weavers.

Continue reading “India: Traditional Silk Weavers Losing Out To New Comers”

Myanmar: Suu Kyi Slams “Disinformation” As Information War Intensifies

By Kalinga Seneviratne

BANGKOK (IDN) – The information war on Myanmar’s Bengali/Rohingya problem has intensified as Myanmar’s de-facto leader and Nobel Peace Laureate Aung Sung Suu Kyi finally broke her silence on the issue on September 6 and slammed the international media and human rights organisations for spreading “misinformation” on the conflict. Continue reading “Myanmar: Suu Kyi Slams “Disinformation” As Information War Intensifies”

Eastern Spirituality Could Help Sustainable Development

SAMVAD+YogiThis article is the 18th in a series of joint productions of Lotus Communication Network  and IDN-InDepthNews, flagship of the International Press Syndicate.

By Kalinga Seneviratne

YANGON, Myanmar (IDN) – “The desire for peace exists everywhere, but the majority of people are not in a position to enjoy peace, stability and security they desire,” noted venerable Dr Ashin Nyanissara, spiritual head of the Sitagu International Buddhist University (SIBU), in opening a two-day gathering of spiritual leaders and scholars at the university here on August 5.

The event was the second Global Initiative for Conflict Avoidance and Environmental Consciousness (SAMVAD) conference, following the first held in New Delhi in September 2015.

SAMVAD is an initiative of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to adopt principles of Asia’s age-old spiritual teachings of Hinduism and Buddhism to address modern-day issues threatening human civilisation. Continue reading “Eastern Spirituality Could Help Sustainable Development”