MonitorsPublished on May 21, 2018
South Asia Weekly Report | Vol. XI Issue 21


Afghanistan: Restoring peace through religion

Sohini Bose Following Afghan President Mohammed Ashraf Ghani’s visit to Jakarta in 2017, both the governments have been looking into increased mutual cooperation, especially with regard to restoring peace to the war-torn country. After an initial discussion between President Ghani, the Indonesian President Jokowi and their Pakistani counterpart Mamnon Hussain, a conference of the ulemas of the three countries, aimed at curbing terrorism in Afghanistan, has been on the cards. This found manifestation in the “Trilateral Ulema Conference on Peace and Stability” held at the Bogor Palace in West Java, Indonesia, and organised by the Indonesian Ulema Council (MIU), on 11 May. Concerned about the sufferings of the Afghan people owing to incessant violence, 70 ulemas as ‘the authoritative interpreters of the Quran’, gathered to create an environment of peace and stability in the countryh and make the climate conducive to execute the peace process.


Given the fundamental religious mindset instigating the terrorist activities in Afghanistan, the conference was aimed at persuading those religious scholars within the folds of the insurgent group who have substantial influence on the militants to stop justifying terrorism. Hence the Ulemas from at the conference decreed violence in Afghanistan as unethical and against the principals of Islam. Accordingly, a 12-point statement, ‘BOGOR Ulema Declaration for Peace’, was issued at the end of the conference.  The declaration began with the appeal that mutual differences must be reconciled in the name of God and the principles of solidarity, unity and brotherhood must be nourished to ensure peace in Afghanistan. The ensuing twelve points may be so summarised: The declaration eulogises that the word Islam is derived from the Arabic word saleema, meaning salvation, hence true Muslims must nurture the values of mercy and compassion within them. Hence, the ulema is supportive of the Afghan Government’s Kabul Peace Process and believes it to be the divine duty of the warring parties to come forward and engage in what may be understood in the term of the Quran as a “consultation”.  The Declaration further espouses the Prophet’s lesson of adopting the “middle path”, a moderate and a regular course to attain paradise, which is more desirable than indulging in any form of extremism. A significant point of the declaration is that it reaffirms that violence in any form cannot be associated with any region, religion, ethnic group or civilization. In all its forms sacrificial or offensive, violence is against Islam. A point of interest is that the religious scholars urged the Muslims to read the same Quran and practise Hadith, the practices of Prophet Mohamed to understand the need for peace when the same sources had been used by the Talibans to justify their acts of violence. At the point of closure, the declaration states that the Ulema stands ready to contribute constructively to this peace process and find viable solutions to restore peace to Afghanistan.

Taliban uncertainty

It has also been reported that the Talibans refused to attend the conference and declared the conference ‘un-Islamic’ and urged the clerics to boycott the same. Doing so would prevent the ‘invading infidels’ in Afghanistan to misuse their name in accomplishing the foreign forces ‘malicious intent’ of retaining foreign troops within the country. Post the conference the Taliban is yet to give a public reaction. In such circumstances, sceptical viewpoints in some circles have been aired, wherein a majority opinion is that as the Talibans also have ulemas in their ranks, they will continue to be guided by them and it will not be easy to convince them to renounce violence. Another point raised by the Deputy Chief of Mission at the Embassy of Afghanistan in Washington D.C., Madina Qasimi, which states that it cannot be vouchsafed that the Declaration will have an impact on the Talibans but what is important is that it will have a positive effect on those people who blindly follow the Taliban version of Islam.

Effect on the commoners

On that note, the Afghan people appear to be hopeful about the outcome of the proceedings in Indonesia and are optimistic about the impact the words of the Ulemas will have on the insurgents. Some believe that the religious scholars play a significant role in bringing about peace in the country while other of a more radical disposition state that the scholars must declare terrorism as haram in Islam and issue fatwas directly against the Talibans. Harping on the point of the religious underpinnings of the insurgent attacks some citizens of Afghanistan are expecting that perhaps a decree issued by the majority of religious scholars of both countries will have an impact on mitigating the terrorist attacks. Hence opinion remains divided on the impact, the Bogor conference will have on the terrorist and how successful it will be in driving the Talibans to join the Peace Process. However, it must also be noted that while the Afghan and American Government continue to focus on the religious aspect, the Talibans want a talk about the continuing presence of US military on their country. Hence convincing them to attend a peace process seems unlikely if their demands are left unheard. Also the influence of Indonesia needs to be taken into account. The Islam in Afghanistan and the one in Indonesia is vastly different. The latter is a mild Sufi brand of its much more rigid cousin prevalent in the former. Hence though a joint effort, how effective the edicts of the conference will be on the Afghan soil remains to be seen. On a poisitive note, it has been affirmed that more meetings like the Bogor Conference will continue and this will not left to stagnate as a solitary affair. This is the beginning of a struggle of religion against religion to free the region from the ensnaring vicious roots of terrorism.  There is considerable faith on the Ulemas as ‘agents’ of peace to enshrine in Afghanistan a spirit of stability, harmony and brotherhood. (The writer is a Research Assistant at Observer Research Foundation, Kolkata)

India: Modi’s Nepal out-reach

Parth Giri The visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Nepal on 13 May, which comes only a month after the visit of Nepal’s Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli’s to India, could be a step forward towards normalising the strained bilateral relations in the light of the 2015 Madhesi agitation in the Himalayan Republic. Modi’s out-reach to Nepal is reflective of New Delhi’s keenness on maintaining its ties with India’s northern neighbour. Though India remains a major investor in Nepal's developmental projects and continues to offers substantial assistance to the Kathmandu as was evident post the 2015 earthquake, the episode of the 2015 economic blockade, for which Oli blamed India, marked a low in ties between the two sides. The two Prime Ministers jointly laid the foundation stone of 900 MW Arun-III hydro-electric project which was one of the earlier commitment.  Additionally, Modi announced building a strategic railway link between Raxaul in Bihar and Kathmandu to enhance people-to-people contact and improve trade relations along its decision to develop the inland waterways for the movements of cargo and providing additional access to the sea for Nepal. The two countries have also agreed to expedite implementation of all pending projects of bilateral cooperation by Nepal's Constitution Day in September, and they also explored methods to cut Nepal's trade deficit with India while providing easy entry to Nepali products, including ginger and cardamom, said Oli. The joint agreement focused on agricultural cooperation and PM Modi also visited Janakpur and Muktinath and attended civic receptions in Kathmandu and Janakpur. Modi announced a Rs 100-crore package for the development of Janakpur “the birth place of Sita” and it’s surrounding areas. After the visit, PM Oli remarked that Modi's pilgrimage to the Himalayan nation has elevated the existing relationship between the two countries to "new heights”.

Acting good-neighbourly

It may seem that the reciprocal visit by the Indian PM is triggered by PM Oli’s bonhomie with China, but instead it is in line with Modi’s commitment to keeping the relationship vital. Earlier, Modi had congratulated Oli on his election win, followed by the visit of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in February 2018. This thus set the stage for Modi’s visit. India’s relations with Nepal have seen its fair amount of ups and downs. In Modi’s foreign policy, Nepal has been a priority from the start. Earlier in his visit to Nepal in 2014, Modi addressed the constituent assembly and invoked the long history of ties and showed interest investing in Nepal-India corridor for better connectivity. However, the recent upsurge among Madhesis population continues to be one of the central causes of the rift. India has been supportive of the Madhesis’ seeking greater political representation in Nepal’s politics. The UML (United Marxist Leninist) party led by Oli was seen as the primary source of resistance to Madhesi demands. The economic blockade of Nepal for 135 days was considered a part of this, a move that fuelled anti-India sentiments in a section of Nepal’s population.

Playing strengths

 By alleging India of intervention in Nepal’s domestic affairs, Oli reacted decisively and built a political base by invoking nationalism laced with anti-India overtones to successfully overcome the political formations which were pro India. Moreover, Oli also whipped up the political courage to flash the China card to dilute Nepal’s dependence on India. China has promised to invest as much as $8.3 billion in comparison to India’s meagre commitment of $317 million to build roads and hydropower plants. From a strategic viewpoint, India is concerned of Oli leaning towards China and Nepal’s interest in the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Moreover, within the scope of the BRI, Nepal and China are in talks of opening the border for transport links across the Tibetan plateau into Nepal. The Modi government, assessing the situation, made a move to renew the ties before Nepal moves further toward China. The latter has been acting on its capability of providing economic assistance to spread its influence. Similarly, Modi has chosen to play on his strength of symbolism, using religion and cultural history as the foundation to improve strained ties. Terming the visit as ‘Chief Pilgrimage’ he made his religious tone a tool to reach out to the public of Himalayan republic. By emphasising the shared culture of the peoples of Nepal and India, and by receiving support from Madhesis, characterises Modi’s Nepal out-reach. This is suggestive of India’s realisation that it needs to re-imagine its ties with Nepal. Additionally China’s rise and its increasing influence in India’s neighbourhood has incentivised New Delhi’s renewed interest in engaging Nepal. However, India’s diplomatic strategy should be chalked through a long-term lens.  (The writer is a Research Intern at Observer Research Foundation)

Country Reports


Territory retrieved from Taliban

The Afghanistan National Defence and Security Forces has managed to take back control of the Tala Barfak distict of the Baghalan province in northern Afghanistan from the Taliban who had captured it a few days back. The area has been cleared of militants and the landmines and explosives planted by the same have also been removed. Though the situation is now normal, additional armed forces have still been deployed in the district as Baghlan remains a volatile region.

ISIS recruiter imprisoned

The Special Forces operating in Afghanistan have arrested one of the top ISIS leaders Abdul Maheen, who was in charge of recruiting fighters during a terror operation in Kabul. The arrest was made from the 11th Police District of the city. He has confessed of his crimes and is now in the custody of the Afghan National Directorate of Security, and is awaiting further investigation. The insurgent group yet remains silent on the arrest of their senior leader.


Bail for Khaleda

 The Supreme Court has upheld the bail granted for opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) Chairperson Khaleda Zia in Zia Orphanage Trust corruption case, in which she is currently serving a five-year jail term. The Court’s decision could not ease her release from jail because she is booked in various other charges.  Khaleda Zia has been behind bars since February this year after a Special Court in Dhaka sentenced her for five years in prison for misappropriation of funds from an orphanage named after her husband and former military dictator General Ziaur Rahman.

 Awami League mayor for Khulna

Ruling Awami League candidate Talukder has won with a large margin in the recently concluded city corporation election in Khulna, country’s third largest city. The election considered important because it considered a curtain raiser to the parliamentary elections scheduled for December 2018.  Both Awami League and BNP participated in the election and BNP supported candidate ended second to the Awami League candidate. Election commission claimed the polls were peaceful but BNP claimed it was nothing more than a farce. The country is likely to see few more elections of the local bodies before 2018 election.

Selling of stocks to China

The Dhaka Stock Exchange, (DSE), country’s main stock exchange, signed an agreement this week to 25 percent of its stake a Chinese consortium, after rejecting a bid from India’s National Stock Exchange (NSE). The Chinese consortium is comprised of the Shenzhen Stock Exchange and Shanghai Stock Exchange. Higher prices offered by the Chinese consortium in comparison to the Indian bid help it to gain a stake in DSE. The Chinese consortium offered Tk 21 ($0.25) per share, additionally pledging to invest another $37 million for technical support. NSE had offered to pay Tk15 ($0.18) per share. DSE Chairman Abul Hashem informed that said the Chinese bid selected after rigorous scrutiny.


King inaugurates highway

King Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuck inaugurated the 77 km Gyalpozhing-Nganglam Highway that connects Monggar with Nganglam bypassing Samdrup Jongkhar. Wangchuck was joined by Gyaltshab Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, Prime Minister, Tshering Tobgay and Jaideep Sarkar, Indian Ambassador to Bhutan besides cabinet ministers, senior government officials, and members of parliament. The highway is expected to reduce travel time to Phuentsholing through India and will also connect the upcoming 2640-MW Kuri-Gongri hydro-power project.

Partnership day

Bhutan celebrated its partnership day with International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), Kathmandu on 16 May with a discussion on strengthening and aligning activities of Bhutan’s 12th Five Year Plan and ICIMOD’s medium action plan (MTAP) IV.

LDC meeting

Economic affairs minister Lekey Dorji starting 16 May attended a two-day ministerial meeting of the Least Developed Countries on trade and transport with the theme, “achieving the SDGs in landlocked developing countries through connectivity and trade facilitation. The meeting is expected to review the progress achieved by the LLDC On transport, trade facilitation and trade and the related SDGs and identify challenges.


Rupee slides

India’s macro-economic threats lie exposed as it grapples with the rupee’s slide. The currency sunk to a closing low of 68.07 against the U.S. dollar on Tuesday, its lowest level in 16 months, before recovering slightly the next day. The rupee, already one of the worst performing Asian currencies, has now weakened 6.2 percent in 2018. The rise in crude oil prices through this year, amidst rising geopolitical tensions in West Asia and dwindling global supply, have obviously hurt the rupee and the trade balance. Meanwhile, despite a depreciating currency, India’s merchandise exports are stumbling instead of gaining from the opportunity.

Peace during Ramadan

The Centre has directed the security forces has suspended all military operations against rebels in the ‘Kashmir Valley’ during the holy month of Ramadan for the first time in nearly two decades. The move, which comes after months of intense fighting in the disputed Himalayan region, will "help peace-loving Muslims observe Ramadan in a peaceful environment", he Union Home Ministry said in a series of tweets on Wednesday.

Modi-Putin meet at Sochi

 Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin will have an informal summit in Russian city of Sochi on Monday. The focus is said to be on pressing global and regional issues, including the impact of the US’ withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal. The issues on the table may include the economic impact on India and Russia in the wake of the US President Donald Trump pulling out of the Iran nuclear deal, the situation in Afghanistan, Syria, the threat of terrorism and matters relating to the upcoming Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) and BRICS summits. The aim of the informal summit between Modi and Putin is to use the friendship and trust between the two countries to create convergence on key global and regional issues.


Nasheed sole contender

Jailed and self-exiled former President Mohammed Nasheed remained the ‘sole contender’ thus far for the presidential primaries of the main Opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP). Nasheed, who obtained political asylum in the UK, is barred from contesting the nation’s presidential elections, for which first-round polling are expected in August. The MDP’s tactic to pressure the West to force President Abdulla Yameen to concede Nasheed’s return home and also candidacy can backfire on the unity of the four-party Joint Opposition (JO) as much as on the final results, as the incumbent ends up sailing through without much of a big fight, as in the two earlier elections in 2008 and 2013.


China trade fair on

The China-Myanmar trade fair 2018 is being organised in Myanmar's commercial city of Yangon on 17 May. It is the first of its kind organized by China-ASEAN Expo (CAEXPO) Secretariat, Trade Development Bureau (TDB) of Ministry of Commerce of China, Worldex-SingEx Exhibitions (Guangzhou) Co. Ltd and Myanmar Trade Promotion Organization. Than Myint, Commerce Minister, said the trade fair could promote trade and economic cooperation between Myanmar and China.

Trade with Nepal on the rise

Myanmar and Nepal will cooperate to raise trade between the two countries and will sign a Memorandum of Understanding to strengthen economic ties soon, with bilateral trade totaling US$8 million in 2017-18 fiscal year. Nepal is among the new importers of Myanmar beans and pulses since India, its biggest market, imposed import restrictions on the crops last year, according to the Myanmar Pulses, Beans and Sesame Seed Merchants Association.

Labour law change

The second amendment to the Settlement of Labour Disputes Law is to be submitted to Amyotha Hluttaw, said U Zaw Min Lat, secretary of the Local and International Labour Affairs Committee. The Settlement of Labour Disputes Law was enacted in 2012 and amended on October 2014 after labour groups objected to provisions that let employers flout the rules with impunity or at the risk of small fines.


Public security up

There has been an unanimous approval in the House of Representatives with regard to a proposal concerning the Public Security (Third Amendment) Bill.  Given the massive waves of reforms under the new government, this has come as a welcome step. Minister of Home Affairs Ram Bhadur Thapa had presented the bill which proposed to insert Section 3.1(a) in the original act. Accordingly, in cases of preventive detention of a person, the local authority would have to inform the family or relatives within 24 hours. This aspect is leading to further transparency in the system.

Grand merger

Nepal has witnessed one of the most historic events in recent times with the merger of the CPN-UML and the CPN (Maoist Centre), the two most influential national left parties. Under the nomenclature of the Nepal Communist Party, this formulation has been termed as ‘historic’ for being the single political party with the strongest hold in the Parliament. The declaration of unification was signed by the UML Chairman and Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli and Maoist Chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal in Kathmandu.

Growing SEZ

The industrial climate of the country has been moving towards a more congenial framework with the establishment of the Special Economic Zones or the SEZs. This is especially true in the case of a place called Bhairawaha, which is all set to witness the origin of new industries. In this regard, the participation of the government in providing smooth electricity and incentives along with the land deserve special mention. There are 69 slots being offered to the export based companies in the country.


Army chief, ‘powerful’

The Forbes magazine has ranked Pakistani Chief of Army Staff Qamar Javed Bajwa as the 68th most powerful person in the world. Although the President is his boss on paper, Gen. Bajwa is de-facto the most powerful person in the nuclear armed state. The magazine observed that Bajwa’s entry to the list comes at a time when India-Pakistan rift is gradually improving and for which he should be partly thanked. The magazine also appreciated Bajwa’s efforts in maintaining peace in Pakistan in the face of rising pressure from militant groups in its domestic space.

Toxic river

Punjab’s Kot Asadullah region has become infamous for deformities, where around 200 children have been affected by physical, neurological and dental deformities. Villagers andlocal media blamed the toxic water laden with high levels of arsenic, fluoride and other minerals. Previously, reports from Lahore Chamber of Commerce and local media had prompted the authorities to act, but the new wells dug, only provide more water with high arsenic content. The Punjab provincial authorities declined to comment on this dismal state of affairs. However, officers who did not wished to be named, stated that the provincial government has failed to act largely due to absence of any national strategy or guidelines for cleaning up the water.

‘Welfare State’ promised

The newly-revived alliance of religio-political parties, namely, the Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal (MMA), held its first election related public meeting at Minar-i-Pakistan on 13 May. The public meeting was an all man show as women activists were not invited to the meeting. In a series of speeches, the MMA leadership condemned the interest based economy and blamed US for acting through local agents. They promised to introduce an economy based on equal distribution of national resources. Maulana Fazlur Rehman, president of the MMA declared that if MMA is voted to power it will create an Islamic welfare state, with best economic system ensuring rights for minorities and jobs for youth.

Sri Lanka

Cold-war on fought-war?

Like every other issue in recent times, the annual ‘War Heroes’ Day’ observances got caught in multiple wordy duels and shadow-boxing within the Government and outside, when SLFP President Maithiripala Sirisena, in a seeming reference to UNP Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe underscoring the need to remember ‘civilian casualties’ alongside departed soldiers who vanquished the LTTE terror-groups in May 2009. “The valiant soldiers cannot be compared to terrorists,” Sirisena said, even as the Northern Province controversial Chief Minister C V Wigneswaran led a memorial of Tamil civilians who were killed, purportedly by the armed forces, at Mullivaikkal in the end-game of the war, nine years ago.



Opinion Pieces

Mohammed Gul Sahibbzada, “Lack of Relevant Training & Skills Renders Afghan Police Force Irrelevant to Match Existing Challenges”, Daily Outlook Afghanistan, 13 May 2018 Fahim Abed and Taimoor Shah, “Taliban Overrun Afghan City, Kill 30 People and Leave”, The New York Times, 16 May 2018 Jawad Sukhanyar and Rod Norland, “Taliban Claim They’ve Taken Control of Western Afghan City, Farah”, The New York Times, 15 May 2018


Daily Outlook Afghanistan, “National Identity: Ethnicity and Ethnocentrism as the Main Barriers”, 15 May 2018 Afghanistan Times, “TAPI and challenges”, 17 May 2018


Opinion Pieces

Barrister Harun ur Rashid, “Blue Economy - Are we ready for it?”,The Daily Star, 14 May 2018 Mubashar Hasan, “Can Tupac help a nation turn away from radical Islam?”, Quartz India, 16 May 2018


Opinion Pieces

David Molden, “ICIMOD-Bhutan Partnership”, Kuensel, 17 May 2018


Kuensel, “Need for improved public transport system”, 17 May 2018 Kuensel, “The value of discourse”, 12 May 2018


Opinion Pieces

Harish Khare, “The art of stealing mandates”, The Wire, 16 May 2018 Aparna Pande, “The tragic story of civilian prime ministers in Pakistan”, Livemint, 17 May 2018. Aman and Roshni Shanker, “Identity in exile”, The Indian Express, 18 May 2018


Opinion Pieces Farah Ahmed, “Jailbird for President?”, Mihaaru, 15 May 2018 Fathumath Shaahunaz, “The arbitrary nature of arbitration in Maldives”, Mihaaru, 15 May 2018


Opinion Pieces

Lawi Weng, “A New Business Sense Helps Bind the Ties Among Northern Alliance Members”, The Irrawaddy, 18 May 2018 Nyein Nyein, “Could Informal Talks Revitalize the Peace Process?”, The Irrawaddy, 12 May 2018


The Irrawaddy, “Myanmar’s Failing Peace”, 17 May 2018 The Irrawaddy, “Police Incompetence on Full Display at Anti-War Protest”, 14 May 2018


Opinion Pieces

MeenaBhatta, ‘Redefining leadership’, Republica, 17 May 2018 Binoj Basnyat, ‘Diplomatic manoeuvrings’, The Kathmandu Post, 18 May 2018 Himalaya Bir Shrestha, ‘Towards a brighter future’, The Kathmandu Post, 17 May 2018


Republica, ‘Build it’, 17 May 2018 The Kathmandu Post, ‘Pre-monsoon madness’, 16 May 2018 Republica, ‘Selective bias’, 14 May 2018


Opinion Pieces

Kamran Yousuf, “When US earns praise from terrorists”, The Express Tribune, 14 May 2018 Hasan Ehtisham, “Pakistan’s credentials for NSG membership”, The Express Tribune, 16 May 2018 F.S. Aijazuddin, “Your ‘new’ Pakistan”, Dawn, 17 May 2018


Dawn,Crippled for life” 14 May 2018 The Express Tribune,It’s all in the optics”, 15 May 2018 Dawn, “The worsening water crisis”, 17 May 2018

Sri Lanka

Opinion Pieces

Dr Tissa Vitharana, “Danger: From a Republic, back to a Colony?”, The Island, 20 May 2018 Tissaranee Gunasekara, “Lanka’s road back to tyranny?”, The Island, 20 May 2018 N Sathiya Moorthy, “OMG, it has to be an OMP still!”, The Sunday Leader, 20 May 2018 D B S Jeyaraj, “Gotabhaya Rajapaksa’s economic vision and political mission”, Daily Mirror Online, 19 May 2018 Lucien Rajakarunanayake, “Where is the timbre of reconciliation?”, The Island, 19 May 2018 Dr Palitha Kohono, “China, India and the Indian Ocean: Sri Lanka’s foreign policy challenges”, The Island, 19 May 2018 M S M Ayub, “Mullikvaikkal, the tricky side?”, Daily Mirror Online, 18 May 2018 Kusal Perera, “Reconciliation called Godot, and Mullivaikkal Week”, Daily Mirror Online, 18 May 2018 Malinda Seneviratne, “Gota and the existentialist threat he poses”, Daily Mirror Online, `17 May 2018 Prof Gamini Keerewella, “A view from Sri Lanka: Unpacking South Asian regional security in the 21st century”, The Island, 15 May 2018 N Sathiya Moorthy, “Who wants to retire gracefully?”, Ceylon Today, 16 May 2018 Ranga Jayasuriya, “Where is this Govt taking the country?”, Daily Mirror Online, 15 May 2018 Jehan Perera, “Unofficial truth commission shows the way for the Govt”, The Island, 15 May 2018 N Sathiya Moorthy, “Say sorry, stay happy!”, The Island, 15 May 2018 Dr Dayan Jaytilleka, “Non-starter new constitution, backdoor federalism”, The Island, 15 May 2018 C A Chandraprema, “Executive Presidency”, The Island, 14 May 2018


Afghanistan: Sohini Bose Bangladesh: Dr Joyeeta Bhattacharjee Bhutan: Mihir Bhonsale India: Parth Giri & Ketan Mehta Maldives & Sri Lanka: N Sathiya Moorthy Myanmar: Sreeparna Banerjee Nepal: Sohini Nayak Pakistan: Mayuri Banerjee
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