Tamils - a Trans State Nation..

"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."
Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Tamils - a Nation without a State
தமிழ் அகம் - ஓர் உணர்வா, அல்லது இடமா?

Tamil Nadu - தமிழ் நாடு
- an estimated 65 million Tamils live in Tamil Nadu - 

Sethusamudram Ship Canal Project

Hindu Council UK calls for Designation of Gulf of Mannar as World Heritage Site

11 November 2008

Comment by tamilnation.org  Religion ? Culture?  Environment?  or simply the politics of the uneasy power balance in the Indian Ocean Region?  See also International Relations in the Age of Empire: The Indian Ocean Region  "Whoever controls the Indian Ocean dominates Asia. This ocean is the key to the seven seas in the twenty-first century, the destiny of the world will be decided in these waters." US Rear Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan quoted by Cdr. P K Ghosh in Maritime Security Challenges in South Asia and the Indian Ocean, 18 January 2004

" Sri Lanka Thursday (16 September 2004) expressed concern over Indian moves to dredge the shallow sea dividing the two neighbouring nations to allow international shipping to bypass the island. The government here said in a statement that the ambitious Indian project could take away shipping from Colombo's main port and also pose a security threat to the smaller island republic. India's ministry of shipping has begun work on a project to create a canal through the Palk Straits to link the east and west coasts of India so that shipping between the two points need not go round Sri Lanka. Radio Veritas: Sri Lanka concerned over Indian move to dredge Palk Straits 17 September 2004

We would like to invite everybody to the first meeting calling for the Governments of India and Sri Lanka to take steps to have the Gulf of Mannar designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.. The meeting will be held at the historic Linnean Society of London, UK, from 25 26 November 2008. The theme for the meeting is "The Gulf of Mannar as a World Heritage Site and its Spiritual and Scientific Relevance to the Earth's Changing Climate".

Our goals for this two-day meeting are simple but bold - to raise awareness of the diverse global importance of the Gulf of Mannar, and work towards the designation of the Gulf of Mannar as a UNESCO World Heritage mixed Natural and Cultural site - an aim vital in the global campaign to preserve biodiversity. We also hope to promote an unprecedented international campaign calling for cancellation of the Sethusamudram Ship Channel Project (SSCP). As you may know, this project threatens one of the world's most pristine marine regions, the many marine species living there that already face extinction and the culturally and spiritually significant Adam's Bridge, also known as Ram Sethu.

World-leading conservationists, ecologists and religious scholars will present the case for designating the Gulf of Mannar as a World Heritage Site and explain why the SSCP should be abandoned. The area's spiritual and scientific relevance to the Earth's changing climate will also be explored.

We also believe the London meeting will provide an effective and ongoing forum for the growing number of scientific and cultural organizations from across the globe that share a vision of sustainable development. It is our hope that this forum will send a powerful message to the world's leaders challenging them to engage with and support scientific and cultural debate in any developmental project that impacts upon the Earth's changing climate or our sacred sites.

A distinguished International Advisory Board headed by Dr. Peter Bunyard is supporting organisation of the meeting. Renowned scientists and religious scholars such as Dr. Anantanand Rambachan will make presentations in the areas, which will be affected by the SSCP, including: -

Indian Ocean - Global ViewEnvironmental/Ecological/Marine Life/Migratory Birds
Ram Sethu/Adam's Bridge as a breakwater
Threat to human livelihood
Affects on agriculture
Project economics
Damage due to marine accidents/cyclones/general pollution
Environmental disasters
Cultural and religious perspectives
Defiance of global conventions/local laws
Security concerns

Among the participants will be Dr. Wangari Maathai, who received a Nobel Peace Prize for her contribution to sustainable development, democracy and peace. She will send a message by video link from Kenya.

I attach additional details about the two-day meeting. More information is also available at our website www.livingplanetfoundation.org.

Note : Hindu Council UK (HCUK) is the foremost and largest national network of the Hindu temple bodies and cultural organisations co-ordinating all different schools of Hindu theology within the UK. HCUK is the representative umbrella body for the British Hindu issues for which a UK wide mandate was received during a two year consultation with the British Hindu public culminating in its launch in November 1994.

HCUK Admin Office:
Boardman House, 64 The Broadway, London E15 1NG.       
T: 020 8432 0400       
W: www.hinducounciluk.org       
F: 020 8432 0393



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