India’s R.K. Pachauri among Nobel peace prize favourites

Oslo, (DPA) India’s R.K. Pachauri and the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that he heads is one of the favourites to win the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize, an online betting site said Tuesday.

Betting company had Pachauri and the IPCC as favourite along with Canadian-born Inuit leader Sheila Watt-Cloutier on 4.50 to 1, former Finnish president Martti Ahtisaari, who helped broker a peace deal in Aceh and recently was involved in unsuccessful talks on Kosovo, on 5.50 to 1 and former US vice president Al Gore 6.50 to 1.

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Another site, Nordicbet, said Polish Holocaust heroine Irene Sendler who earlier this year was honoured by her home country for her role in saving 2,500 Jewish children from the Nazis in Warsaw during World War II and Gore, who has been nominated for his efforts to highlight climate change, had the odds of 4.50 to 1.

Pachauri had the odds 5 to 1 and Sheila Watt-Cloutier odds 7 to 1.

Martti Ahtisaari offered the odds 5.50 to 1.

Several of the names have been announced by individuals including members of parliament, academics and former Peace Prize laureates that have the right to nominate candidates.

The five-member Nobel Committee, which also has the right to nominate candidates, advises nominators not to announce their proposals but there are no rules against the procedure.

The committee was Friday due to name the winner of the prize worth 10 million kronor ($1.53 million).

The committee received 181 nominations this year, including 46 organizations.

Last year the award was presented to Muhammad Yunus, the Bangladeshi national behind the Grameen Movement micro-banking system that has helped millions in his homeland.

Swedish industrialist Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite, endowed the Peace Prize. The award ceremony takes place Dec 10, the anniversary of his death.