Category Archives: Events

Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics™ Forum 2017

Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics Forum 2017

Click here for Online Event Registration

The distinctive richness of the Eastern Himalayas can be attributed to its colorful biodiversity, numerous niche ecosystems, and vibrant communities. Understanding the dynamics, structure, and functioning of these systems adds an enormous complexity to not only their conservation and restoration, but also in engaging stakeholders and finding innovative long-term solutions.

Founded on the principle, “Real Innovation happens at the edges of disciplines”, the Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics™ Forum provides a platform to foster multi-disciplinary collaboration and innovation. Launched under the aegis of ‘Asian Elephants in the Wild Talk’ and ‘Balipara Foundation Awards’,  in 2016, it was rebranded as the Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics™ Forum, to expand the conversations beyond single-species conservation.

Thus far, the forum has seen the participation of over 1400 individuals from 20+ countries, and representatives from 22 Indian States,including Scientists, Botanists, Conservationists, Ecologists, Administrators, Government and Forest Department officials. This multi-disciplinary group discussed a broad swathe of issues with a special focus on the plight of Asian Elephants in the wild and in captivity.

Looking at 2017

To further elevate this dialogue, Balipara Foundation is delighted to announce the Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics™ Forum,2017. The Forum will be held on 2nd and 3rd November 2017, in Guwahati, Assam, India.

At the Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics™ Forum, 2017, the conversations will revolve around the theme of Communities, Conservation and Botany. The plenary sessions will explore the role of Botany and Communities in the Conservation of ecosystems through the lens of Naturenomics™, Innovation and Information.

The conference will serve as a platform to explore the importance of conservation in our world of botany, to understand the role of the Guardians of Creation and how they are engaging in conservation in a way that supports their local economies and livelihoods and, exploring reforms required in governance & policy that can have an impact on making conservation more participatory, hence, more effective.

Communities, Universities, Government, Non-Profits, Donors and Media Professionals from around the world will engage in a dialogue to explore business models, policy reforms, technology, etc., to identify drivers and innovative ideas for community conservation.

Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics™ Forum 2017– Plenaries

 

DAY 1: BACK TO THE FUTURE

Rewilding the Trumpet

REWILDING THE TRUMPET

Elements Essential for Developing and Implementing Keystone Species Conservation Programmes, using the Elephant as a Mascot

The focus of the session lies in creating a viable platform for global stakeholders from Elephant Science and Conservation to come together for the purpose of networking, collaborating, and brainstorming integrated solutions and targeted action plans for the preservation and conservation of this most iconic species.

Eastern Himalayan Biocultural Diversity Preservation Programs

EASTERN HIMALAYAN BIOCULTURAL DIVERSITY PRESERVATION PROGRAMMES

Learning from the People of Land

This session will explore Conservation through the world of botany, address issues and evangelize innovative ideas for Community-based Conservation.

The Future of Education

THE FUTURE OF EDUCATION

The Classroom is Wild

Natural Spaces have significant benefits for everyone. But how do you go about creating one? This session will enhance and exchange practical and effective ideas for incorporating nature play and knowledge into our programs and curriculum. We will explore innovative models of education for sustainability through community-integrated, entrepreneurial learning in a natural environment.

Storytellers on the Frontline

STORYTELLERS ON THE FRONTLINE

The Role of Print, Social & Digital Media in Conservation

This session will explore the role of media in shaping environmental awareness, relevance of responsible reporting and engaging story-telling to reach out to the masses.

Reforming Economies

REFORMING ECONOMIES

Biodiversity Assets vs. Human Aspirations
– Complementing the Future of Economics with Mindfulness

This session will explore the topics of creating a valuation model of our natural assets and alternative ways in which we can finance conservation efforts. We will explore alternative business models such as crowdfunding, impact investing to build social impact funds, etc.

Activism in Shaping Policies

ACTIVISM IN SHAPING POLICIES

Law & Policy – an Environmental Perspective towards Effective & Inclusive Policies for Ecosystems

This session will explore reforms required in governance & policy that will have a lasting impact on making conservation more participatory, hence, more effective. We will explore how we can leverage effective and inclusive policies for ecosystems.

DAY 2: RURAL FUTURES- CONCEPTS, NETWORKS & ACTIONS

Concept

CONCEPT – RURAL FUTURES FOR CATALYSING CONSERVATION EFFORTS

Designing Holistic Models for Human- Centric Community- based Conservation

RuFu is a holistic plan encompassing all human needs and one, which allows wildlife to thrive alongside. The objective is to develop implementation plans for RuFu.

Some of the themes would be – Water Accessibility, Turning Waste to Wealth, Green Energy, Education Reforms, Sustainable Housing, Local Economies, Transportation, Technology & Healthcare.

Balipara Foundation Awards

Since 2013, Balipara Foundation has highlighted and invested in the efforts of societal entrepreneurs who are working tirelessly to create social, economic and environmental impact in protecting the essential natural resources and restoring the beauty of the Eastern Himalayas. Through the awards, we seek to focus the spotlight on these ecological crusaders and their work by publishing the case-studies of their work. Since inception, they have highlighted over 53 case studies ranging from the protection of endangered species and threatened habitats to the promotion of environmental education, tourism, products and services, emphasizing the interdependence between nature and ecology.

The Balipara Foundation Awards known this year as the Balipara Foundation Social Impact and Entrepreneurial Recognition, Awards 2017 features the Rabindranath Barthakur Memorial Lecture Series which invites speakers to inspire and energize these ecological crusaders. This memorial lecture series has featured eminent speakers such as Dr. Ashok Khosla, Mr. Shyam Saran and Professor Gunter Pauli. In 2016, the lecture was delivered in a unique jugalbandi between Mr. S Ramadorai (Technology) with renowned flautist Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia and Mrs. Mala Ramadorai (Music).

This year, Balipara Foundation Awards will be held on the evening of 3rd November, 2017 where we will recognize 10 new ecological crusaders from the Eastern Himalayas.

We seek your continued participation and long-term support for the Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics™ Forum and Balipara Foundation Awards 2017.

To send in your nominations, please write to us at: ehnf@baliparafoundation.com

Balipara Foundation Social Impact and Entrepreneurial Recognition Categories

The Annual Balipara Foundation Award
The Naturenomics™ Award
The Green Legal/ Journalist Award
The Eastern Himalayan Conservation Award
The Green Guru Award
The Young Naturalist Award
The Food for the Future Award
The Nature Conservancy Award
The Lifetime Service Award
Special Category – Rangers of the Eastern Himalayas Award

Click here for Online Event Registration

For Registrations, please contact

Karishma Ahmed
E: ehnf@baliparafoundation.com
With:
1. Name of your organization
2. Number of participants attending and representing your organization
3. Contact details (Phone & e-mail) of each participant
4. Organization Website & Social Media handles

For Nomination of Awards please download the form attached at the end of this article and email the filled copy to

Karishma Ahmed
E: ehnf@baliparafoundation.com

Download Award Nomination Form

For Dinner Invites and Accommodation details, please contact

Karishma Ahmed
E: ehnf@baliparafoundation.com

Nitu Kalita
E: nitu.kalita@baliparafoundation.com

Conference Hotels

Vivanta by Taj
Ginger Hotel

The Future Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics™ Forums

2018
1st & 2nd November 2018
Vivanta by Taj, Guwahati, Assam, India

2019
4th & 5th November 2019
Vivanta by Taj, Guwahati, Assam, India

Myanmar’s Peace Conference Ends on a Positive Note

The 21st Century Panglong Conference of Myanmar concluded in Nay Pyi Taw on September 3, 2016.The 21st Century Panglong Conference of Myanmar concluded in Nay Pyi Taw on September 3, 2016. The event was a success as all participants agreed to find lasting solutions through discussions and proper coordination among themselves.  Significant progress has been made in the direction of achieving peace under the guideline of Nationwide Cease fire Accord (NCA). The four-day conference ended with an appeal to all sides to reconcile their differences and immediately start coordinating with each other to bring about peace in Myanmar. One of the main challenges being faced during the conference was to convince the non-signatories to sign the NCA. It is really important to get all ethnic minorities together because unless all of them agree to participate in the political dialogue peace will not be possible.

Myanmar State Counselor Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi, who is the chairperson of Union Peace Dialogue Joint Committee (UPDJC) and on the last day of the vent she thanked all stakeholders for successful holding of the event. She stressed the importance of public support in the peace process and concluded by saying that just discussions in a conference are not enough and efforts should be continued for complete reunification of the country. She further stated that all participants make the 21st Century Panglong Conference a historical and honourable one since it was first held in 1947.

Third annual Myanmar Hospitality and Tourism Conference attracted more than 200 delegates

Kempinski Hotel Nay Pyi Taw Photo:Kempinski
Kempinski Hotel Nay Pyi Taw Photo:Kempinski

Sphere Conferences, the conference arm of Singapore Press Holdings Limited (SPH), today launched the 3rd annual Myanmar Hospitality and Tourism Conference (MHTC 2015) according to a media release from the organisers on 10 June.

Supported by the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism, and jointly-organised by Sphere Conferences and the Myanmar Tourism Federation, MHTC 2015 is the country’s only dedicated conference for the hospitality professionals in the Asia Pacific region. It was held from 9 to 10 June at the Kempinski Hotel in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar.

More than 200 hospitality professionals from 15 countries gathered to discuss issues, challenges, and opportunities in Myanmar’s booming hospitality and tourism sector. The discussions entailed a wide range of topics ranging from investment climate and macro-economic issues affecting the hospitality sector, to owner-operator relationship, enhancing customer experience and tackling HR challenges.

Government organisations and non-government associations that were present included Lux Dev, GIZ, Myanmar Tourism Federation, Myanmar Hotelier Association, Myanmar Tourism Marketing and Union of Myanmar Travel Association. Private companies from Myanmar and the region included Amazing Group, Amara Hotel, Centara Hotels & Resorts, Dusit International, Home Box Office, Hotel @ Tharabar Gate, Kempinski Hotel, Myat Min Group, MasterCard Asia, Melia Hotels International, Novotel Yangon Max, Review Pro, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, Savills, Sedona Hotel Yangon, Sule Shangri-La, Summit Parkview Hotel, Tangram Hotels and more.

The conference started with a special session with some key visionaries in the hospitality sector sharing their perspectives on navigating through Myanmar’s dynamic hospitality market. Participants at the keynote panel were leaders from key FDI hotels in Myanmar. Following the panel discussion, Curtis S. Chin, former US Ambassador to the Asian Development Bank shared his views on the economic sustainability of frontier markets such as Myanmar. After the talk, a panel discussion was held between local hotel owners and international operators to discuss “the pursuit of the ideal operator.”

NORTH EAST CONNECTIVITY SUMMIT

L TO R: Shri. VIJAY CHHIBBER - SECRETARY, MINISTRY OF ROAD TRANSPORT & HIGHWAYS GOI, H.E. GAUTAM MUKHOPADHAYA - INDIAN AMBASSADOR TO MYANMAR, Dr. MUKUL SANGMA - CHIEF MINISTER OF MEGHALAYA, MR. RANJIT BARTHAKUR - CHAIRMAN FICCI NE & Dr. A. DIDAR SINGH - SECRETARY GENERAL FICCI
L TO R: Shri. VIJAY CHHIBBER – SECRETARY, MINISTRY OF ROAD TRANSPORT & HIGHWAYS GOI, H.E. GAUTAM MUKHOPADHAYA – INDIAN AMBASSADOR TO MYANMAR, Dr. MUKUL SANGMA – CHIEF MINISTER OF MEGHALAYA,
MR. RANJIT BARTHAKUR – CHAIRMAN FICCI NE & Dr. A. DIDAR SINGH – SECRETARY GENERAL FICCI

North Eastern part of India has immense latent potential which can be harnessed to ensure equitable growth across the country. With 5339 kms of International borders and surrounded by some of the fastest growing economies of the world, the North East is located in a uniquely advantageous geographic position. However, to be able to leverage the unique advantages, and ensure inclusive growth, some key enablers like roads, railways, water ways, airports need to be strengthened. Development of connectivity infrastructure will have huge multiplier effects on the region’s growth besides paving the way for better economic and strategic integration of the region with rest of the country and also with neighbouring countries.

In order to identify and highlight the connectivity needs of the region, to catalyse the evolution of a comprehensive connectivity road map for the region, explore financing options and rope in private sector capabilities, FICCI organised a two day “North East Connectivity Summit” from 27th to 28th November 2014 in Guwahati.

The summit was the first ever platform focused on policy debate and facilitation of investments for connectivity infrastructure in the North East Frontier by focusing on important areas of infrastructure development like Roads, Railways, Inland Waterways, Airports and development of an integrated development corridor connecting mainland India with South East Asia.

MR. RANJIT BARTHAKUR, CHAIRMAN, FICCI NORTH EAST
MR. RANJIT BARTHAKUR, CHAIRMAN, FICCI NORTH EAST

BACKGROUND

The North East, with a total area of 2,62,179sq km occupies about 8 percent of India’s total geographical area and are populated by about 3.8 % of India’s population. The region is rich in natural resources, enjoys a demographic advantage with a large young population and is surrounded by over 5300 kms of international borders. Despite the advantages however, the region has lagged behind during the 65 years since independence, primarily because of a disconnect with its neighboring countries.

While it is connected by the narrow chickens neck corridor with mainland India the regions connectivity with neighboring countries, with whom it shares over 5300 kms of international borders, is almost non-existent. Intraregional connectivity is also far from adequate, although roads have seen substantial development in the past few years, slow pace of development of railways, air transport and Inland Water Transport has ensured that in large parts of the region inadequate connectivity is still a major impediment for development.

Massive investments need to be made to create new connectivity infrastructure and upgrade the existing ones. Government alone cannot fulfil these needs and therefore it is important to rope in the private sector – national and international companies and also multilateral agencies to help finance and execute large scale connectivity projects in the region.

KEY OBJECTIVES

To build consensus on the connectivity needs of the region.
To evolve a comprehensive connectivity development roadmap for the region Brain storm financing options for infrastructure development in the North East.

SHRI TARUN GOGOI, CHIEF MINISTER OF ASSAM, GOI
SHRI TARUN GOGOI, CHIEF MINISTER OF ASSAM, GOI

KEY AREAS

Roads: Intra-regional connectivity needs to be improved substantially and road connectivity with the neighbouring countries needs to be re-established. One of the key proposals in the roads sector is to develop a 4000 km ring road connecting all the north eastern states.

Railways:The region has about 2600 kms of railway lines, mostly in the states of Assam and Tripura. Five of the eight state capitals are yet to be connected by railway and international rail connectivity is non-existent. Some key Railway projects that need to be expedited / taken up are connecting all state Capitals, Indian part of the Trans Asian Railway, Border railway line along the India Myanmar Border, and restoring rail connectivity with Bangladesh.

Inland Waterways: The Brahmaputra and Barak River Systems which formed the backbone of connectivity during the pre-independence period could provide a very cost effective mode of transportation and help overcome the transportation bottleneck. It is proposed to develop 20 port townships along the length of these two rivers and fully develop intraregional connectivity.

DR. A. DIDAR SINGH SECRETARY GENERAL, FICCI
DR. A. DIDAR SINGH SECRETARY GENERAL, FICCI

Air Connectivity: In the early 1970s the North East had 17 functioning airports; today this number has come down to 10. Given the nature of the terrain, Air Connectivity can play a vital role in catalyzing development in far flung areas of the region.

Economic Integration and Development Nodes: It is proposed that 50 economic integration and development nodes be set up across the region in tandem with development of transportation corridors.

 

 

LEAPING TOWARDS A BRIGHTER FUTURE: MYANMAR INSTITUTE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

MIIT - GROUND BREAKING CEREMONY
MIIT – GROUND BREAKING CEREMONY

Myanmar Institute of Information Technology (MIIT) is a National Centre of Excellence established by the Government of the Republic of Union of Myanmar to impart education and conduct research in the field of Information Technology. The Institute is being established with the help of the Government of India under a MOU entered into between the two Governments. The International Institute of Information Technology, Bangalore (IIIT- B) India is the mentor institution which is providing technical and academic support to the project.

IIITs, with their unique model of education, research, and industry interaction, are Institutions of considerable repute in academic as well as corporate circles in India and abroad. IIIT-B was established in 1999 with a vision to contribute to the IT sector by focusing on education and research, entrepreneurship and innovation. IIIT-B with its excellent credentials and linkages to software industry has been entrusted with the role of mentoring the MIIT.

A Ground Breaking Ceremony, signaling the auspicious beginning to the establishment of the campus was held on 17th June 2014 at Mandalay. The Ceremony was presided over by the Hon’ble Union Minister H.E Dr. KoKoOo, Ministry of Science and Technology Myanmar. Deputy Minister H.E Dr Aung KyawMyat, Ministry of Science and Technology and Ambassador of India to Myanmar, H.E. Gautam Mukhopadhaya also participated in the Ceremony. A team of professors from IIIT-B comprising of Prof Sadagopan, Professor Vijaya Raghavan, Dr. KRV “Raja” Subramanian and Dr. Debarata Das and officials involved in the project from Myanmar and Ministry of External Affairs, GoI also attended the ceremony.

OFFICIALS FROM INDIAN INSTITUTE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY, BANGALORE AND MINISTRY OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS AT GROUND BREAKING CEREMONY OF MIIT IN MANDALAY
OFFICIALS FROM INDIAN INSTITUTE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY, BANGALORE AND MINISTRY OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS AT GROUND BREAKING CEREMONY OF MIIT IN MANDALAY

Ambassador Mukhopadhaya thanked the Honourable Union Minister for the support extended by the Government of Myanmar for the project. He congratulated the team from IIIT(B) for the successful commencement of the course in Post Gradate Diploma in Software Development at Bangalore from 5th May 2014 which is the first programme under the banner of MIIT. He hoped that the Degree Programme would be able to begin from December 2014 at Mandalay as scheduled.

Ambassador Mukhopadhaya said that India’s continued commitment for development cooperation in Myanmar includes a financial commitment of US$ 24 million earmarked for IT projects. Notable projects in the field of IT which have been completed/are under active implementation with assistance from India include – the establishment and subsequent upgradation of IMCEITS at Yangon; establishment of the Language lab and E-resource centre at MOFA Nay Pyi Taw and Yangon; hardware assistance to the Central Land Records Development Training Centre (CLRDTC) Takkyi Township, Yangon; support to the IT Training Programme for 100 Young Myanmar Entrepreneurs at the Infosys Global Education Centre, India (as part of the Myanmar President U Thein Sein’s Initiative to develop human resource and entrepreneurship in Myanmar) in collaboration with UNESCAP; and the proposal for setting up Centre of Excellence in Software Development and Training (CESDT) under the ASEAN-India Fund.

In his remarks Ambassador mentioned that the Information technology sector in India has increased its contribution to India’s GDP from 1.2% in 1998 to 7.5% in 2012. The IT sector In India aggregated revenues of US$100 billion in 2012, growing by over 9%. He said that many IT companies from India have already been engaged by the Government of Myanmar and the private sector for various projects under implementation and hoped that Myanmar would further leverage India’s expertise and experience in the IT sector for growth of its economy and development of the Country.

POLITICAL TRANSITION IN INDIA’S NEIGHBOURHOOD AFGHANISTAN AND MYANMAR

Page-29-Image-33

Under the broad agenda of ‘Nations in Transition’ and their internal political dynamics, Zakir Husain Delhi College had organised a conference on “Political Transition in India’s Neighbourhood: Afghanistan and Myanmar” on 11th April, 2014. The dilemmas of political transition in Afghanistan and the nature of democratization in Myanmar are issues which require critical interventions. Therefore, the conference aimed to compare and contrast the nature of transition and current political developments in both the countries, particularly in the wake of the Presidential elections in Afghanistan and the recently conducted census in Myanmar.

The various sessions focused on a comparative analysis between Afghanistan and Myanmar and the similarities in the transition that both the countries are undergoing.The Conference was organized in collaboration with American Centre, Sarcist and Bookage Publishers and discussed the issues of state building in the context of post-conflict society of Afghanistan and national reconciliation process in Myanmar.

It provided a forum for discussion and interface between the Diplomats, academicians, media persons, research scholars, policy analysts and practitioners representing various institution in India as well as abroad. The outcome of the conference serves as an important contribution for future academic research on political transition and change in these regions.

CONCEPT NOTE

Today the region in India’s neighbourhood stands at the crossroads of history. Political uncertainties, growing internal and regional insecurities, weakening social fabrics, economic hardships despite the mirage of growth and systemic human rights violations define the political climate of the south Asian region.

India’s neighbourhood particularly Afghanistan and Myanmar, on the west and east respectively, are undergoing a rapid political transition embrowned with a number of possibilities. Political transition in both the countries affects not only the life of the people of the two countries but also has tremendous bearings on peace, security, stability and development of the entire region. However, the nature of the political turmoil, historical background, geopolitical imperatives and undergoing transition in the two countries and their implications for the region and India in particular are very much different.

AFGHANISTAN

Afghanistan’s predicament is the result of a mix of:

  • ·  Legacy of cold war
  • ·  US-Pakistan post-cold war lopsided policies
  • ·  Post 9/11 US militarism
  • ·  Obama’s half-hearted approach towards Afghanistan’s reconstruction and lack of clarity in his Pakistan’s policy
  • ·  Afghans’ collective inability to reach a comprehensive political reconciliation.
    The Afghanistan challenge is the challenge of post-conflict nation and state building in a country still rooted in tribalism and absence of a viable economy. The stumbling blocks on the path of stabilization in Afghanistan are as follows:
  • ·  Taliban’s extremism
  • ·  Opium cultivation
  • ·  Warlordism
  • ·  Resistance to the authority of centralized state
  • ·  Dependence on foreign donors’ money
  • ·  Pakistan’s elusive search for strategic depth against India

There are allegations of rampant corruption under Karzai government and his uneasy relations with the US have delayed the signing of the Afghanistan-US Bilateral Security Agreement despite its approval by the National LoyaJirgah.
There are mixed signals of whether Afghanistan will be able to maintain peace and stability and prevent the reemergence of Taliban from forcibly capturing state power or preventing a civil war reminiscent of the days of post -Soviet withdrawal in 1989. Taliban has been no doubt weakened but it remains a serious contender for power. The conduct of elections to Presidency and Parliament is a challenge which hopefully will be carried out and new government may sign the Bilateral Security Agreement. The US and international assistance in non-combative role and financial assistance will be required for a long time to come. Lots of stakes of the international community and India are involved in peace, stability and prosperity in Afghanistan and maintenance of its independence and sovereignty.

MYANMAR

The new democratic regime in Myanmar is now taking its baby steps and embarking on a new era of democratic reforms on the path of – ‘disciplined democracy’. At this stage, it has to face a number of teething troubles and has a long way to go from infancy to adolescence. As it moves forward in its growth and maturity, we hope these problems can be overpowered with the emergence of a more open and mature democracy. The newly established national and regional parliaments are the centerpiece of the country’s reform process. Still, the new Constitution greatly inhibits the creation of a genuine civilian government in Myanmar. One reason is the reservation of 25 per cent of all seats in the National Parliament for military personnel.

(LEFT TO RIGHT: MR. M. ASLAMPARVAIZ, PROFESSOR S. D. MUNI, AMBASSADOR RAJIV KUMAR BHATIA IS THE DIRECTOR GENERAL OF INDIAN COUNCIL OF WORLD AFFAIRS, MR. SIDDHARTHVARADARAJAN AND DR. UMA SHANKAR)
(LEFT TO RIGHT: MR. M. ASLAMPARVAIZ, PROFESSOR S. D. MUNI, AMBASSADOR RAJIV KUMAR BHATIA IS THE DIRECTOR GENERAL OF INDIAN COUNCIL OF WORLD AFFAIRS, MR. SIDDHARTHVARADARAJAN AND DR. UMA SHANKAR)

It also assigns key ministerial portfolios such as Defense and Home Affairs exclusively to military representatives. The other controversial clause relates to Article 59(F) which prohibits any citizens whose parents, spouse or children owe any allegiance to a foreign power.

Moreover, ethnic nationalities have also been demanding a federal constitution, granting them greater autonomy. Although, the change is coming slowly to the isolated country, but still, it has a long way to go. With the elections being held and release of Aung San Suu Kyi, there is a ray of hope for democracy and change in Myanmar. The entry of Suu Kyi and her party to the parliament has been a means of legitimizing newly established civilian regime’s mandate to govern and enhance its own reform credentials. The regime needs Suu Kyi in the parliament to bolster the authority of its own political system and spur on easing Western sanctions. However, Suu Kyi needs the military perhaps more than anyone else if she is to advance politically and amend the constitution, given a quarter of seats are reserved for the military. The reform process, however, in Myanmar is scared by the reformists and hardliners in the army. The hardliners have become more concerned after the last bye- elections when military backed USDP could just get one out of the 45 seats.

Nevertheless, resolving the ethnic issue will be Myanmar’s biggest challenge now. Overcoming of sixty year old ethnic conflict will not be easy and the government will have to do a great deal to build the trust necessary to move beyond temporary ceasefires to resolve the underlying political issues. These developments, therefore, have a significant implication for the dynamics of power struggle and future road map to the presidency in Myanmar in the 2015 elections.

The dilemmas of political transition in Afghanistan and the nature of democratization in Myanmar are issues require critical interventions.