Friday, September 29, 2006

Mind Your Language

The Karnataka Govt. wants 1400 English Medium Schools closed down by end of the year.

This raises several questions.

15 of Kannada-only ministers send their children to English-medium schools. So is it the case of: English Medium Schools: Good for us - Bad for you?

Do the ministers have one policy for themselves and another for the people? Sure enough, it seems so. Leading by example is not something Politicians Know... isn't it?

Well, if its a question of violating undertaking by schools to be Kannada medium - so what exactly was going on for 12 long years? Has anyone punished officials who were sleeping all this time, before discovering the 'lapse' suddenly.

Another thing worth considering is, what is the quality of education imparted in Govt. Schools where these students are supposed to be shifted? The answer lies in the fact that - nobody wants to go to these schools.

By all means local language should be taught - but is this the way to go - by shutting down schools ?

Stop harassing poor children, Sangliana urges Government

Fine for Ministers Kids but...

And the World Looked On...

A man threatened to jump from a three-story building for almost 2 Hours. And finally ended his life.

Police, Fire Brigade and the usual crowd - all were present in full force. The whole scene was captured on cameras too.

Everyone watched in horror but forgot to save the man. Apparently, no effort was made to save him except for some verbal dissuation. What a shame.

What exactly are Fire Brigade Personnel and Police trained for? Isn't saving lives, an item higher on their priority list and training than - putting down fires and catching criminals ! Apparently NOT!

Less said the better about the crowd - it is quite common for crowds to gather and create commotion - in places of accidents, quarrels, deaths etc. But not do anything meaningful.

But, this comes as NO SURPRISE, in a country where - A Minister of Rajasthan State and yes you guessed it - crowd watched - for Eight hours - as a family found themselves surrounded by rising flood water, until they drowned. Read earlier post in this regard here: Minister and People Watch - As a Family Drowns in Rajasthan

And, the man apparently did this because of mental harassment by the society, his wife and the legal system. At least that would have been his interpretation. When will we get rid of our lopsided laws. Read earlier post about such a law: Increasing cases of Misuse of Section 498A

Suicide, a public spectacle in AP
Man jumps to death in full public view

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Bribe the voters - Is this what it is?

Shree Mulayam Singh (CM of one of the largest and poorest states in india)

is busy distributing money to the unemployed. On the face of it a great measure, but the underlying reason is elections are round the corner in Uttar Pradesh. This man distributed over Rs 30 Crores by one estimate in less than a week. And he is continuing to do this again and again.

Caught on Television: When one of the media persons asked a participating student (receiving unemployment cheque) - are you below poverty line? Do you have that document with you. She didn't know what is poverty line and why she should be below that to qualify for this money. Sure enough, when it rains money it makes sense to get drenched.

And where is all this money coming from: From the Tax Payer's ofcourse. So instead of using the money judiciously on development schemes - it is being used for personal gains.

Why is this not declared Illegal?
Why are there hardly any voices against this? Hardly any media coverage. Well ofcourse media is busy being silly - showing a man driving car from the passenger's seat, and a kid playing with monkey's as - prime time news (yes indeed Aaaj Tak , Zee News and Star News - are competing against each other in touching the greatest depth in crap television news programming.)

Earlier we had our dearest leaders: Karunanidhi distributing Television Sets. Amma promising jewellery just before elctions, Kumaraswamy distributing Bicycles. See an earlier post on this here: Wasting TaxPayers Money - and How!

But, this seems to work in India. After all, it makes perfect sense for Politicians to keep people uneducated and poor; and give them frills like television and occasional cash, but not long term necessities like primary education and employment. Because educated and progress driven voters will see through their political gimmicks.

Mulayam disburses cheques to students

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Archaic Laws - Why

Much of our laws/acts/regulations were written ages ago; many in 19th century (several under British rule).

Shining Examples Archaic Laws from the land of Manu:
  • Indian Telegraph Act - 1855
  • The Indian Penal Code which makes homosexuality a crime - 1860. And this same law makes adultery a crime, though only the male who has sex with a married woman can be imprisoned. Not the woman! - 1860
  • Indian Contract Act - 1872.
  • Official Secrets Act - 1923
  • The Banking Regulation Act - 1949

To make matters even more interesting many of these laws have clauses that read like : "Notwithstanding anything written...."

So, what's going on?:

  • Lawmakers are too busy playing caste and vote bank politics - by adding zillion clauses to existing reservation laws. They do not talk about removing creamy layer or need of primary education.
  • Politicians rarely debate such things in Parliament. Many just don't attend; those who do; are either playing regional card; or trying to bring down the opposition.
  • Political Honchos like to leave such things to - so called Experts - or Committees - unless it is something that can help their political careers.
  • Bureaucrats largely choose to let things - 'just be'.

We do actually have a very very large number of laws. Are a large number of laws indicative of a problem? Yes indeed - which is - Poor interpretation of laws (often purposeful - reservations is an example of that).

India and Its Archaic Media Laws

Indian Bare Acts

Sunday, September 24, 2006

On a Lighter Note: Overheard

At a Airlines Ticketing Counter

Customer(C): Excuse Me.
Ticketing Agent(TA): Yes Sir.

C: Do you guys fly to Mumbai? {Almost made me laugh... as if the question was does the Ticket Agent - himself flies to Mumbai?}
TA: Yes Sir.

C: What is the price for the flight tomorrow?
TA: The price for the morning flight is 'so-and-so'.

C: What? Aren't you supposed to be a low fare airline? {Expression of Surprise!}
TA: Yes Sir.

C: Your fare is much higher than 'so-and-so' airlines. {Loud and Demanding}
TA: Hmmm... {doesn't seem to know what to say}

C: Why do you advertise low fare then? {As if the Ticketing Agent has advertised it personally!}
TA: Ughh.... you have to buy the ticket in advance sir to get lower fare.

C: Advance? You mean buy a month or more in advance? {i have better things to do !!}
TA: Yes Sir, it comes cheaper then. {Is trained to be polite obviously.}

C: Oh Really? {leaves in disgust}

Just think about the conditions prevailing even 10 years ago - You had to buy whatever ticket is available, at whatever price from a limited number of one or two airlines; if you wanted to fly at all!

There was no reason for govt. to hold back entry of private player's in this sector for so long. BUT, then didn't we have just one car - AMBASSADOR, and one scooter - BAJAJ for several decades in this country. Ok there was a FIAT and a VESPA too... after some time :).

And yes - Perhaps the Ticket Agent deserves some politeness from the customers as well.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

The Literacy Map


Lighter the Color - less the literacy level.
Dear Education and HRD Ministers - when will all the light shades go away?

Eminent Men and the Education System

Maths Maths - Go Away

CBSE Chief Ashok Ganguly (no less!) has proposed to the HRD Ministry to make Maths and English optional subjects for SC/ST Students.

"It will be suicidal if these subjects are downgraded to the level of optional subjects in the formative stages of the school education. It is academically unsound," - Mohd Ishaq, noted educationist and author of the book - Education as a movement and a challenge.

Maths on its way out
English, Maths as Optional !

The Education Minister and Language

The Education Minister of Karnataka Basavaraj Horatti issues a directive to de-recognize 1400 private schools for having English as Medium of Instruction.

Narayana Murthy : Every Child must have the option to attend an English-medium school.

Link: Mind your Language

The Higher Education Minster and Tipu Sultan

Karnataka’s Higher Education Minister D H Shankaramurthy : Tipu Sultan is a usurper and anti kannada figure.

"We are a democracy, we all have the right to show how stupid we are – but I think the minister of education should not exercise that right" - Girish Karnad

Link: Row Over Tipu Sultan

Source: Education Challenge


When was the last time :

  • that a Education Minister, HRD Minister spoke about the URGENT need for India to become 100% literate society, stressed need of Primary Education?
  • that the government and its teeming bureaucrats asked themselves - why is it that Teachers in a very large number of govt. run schools in Rural areas don't even show up for work?
  • govt. figured out - where is money being spent on Primary Education going - with no visible improvement in literacy or quality of education in govt. schools? Anyway - 16000 crores is planned to be spent on reservations in Higher Education - while Primary Education is in disarray. WHY?


For a country in which higher education is so valued, India's record in primary education is dismal. - Kaushik Basu - Professor of economics, Cornell University

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Thankyou Railways - for the fight against Corruption.

People no less than Ministers indulge in looting Tax Payer's Money.
BUT, this is not surprising in a country - where - the very reason large number of people become Ministers is to do the same.

Caught Ticketless

Shibu Soren (Coal Minister !) - his family is caught travelling ticketless.
Dear Mr Soren: Have you seen the poor state of Safety across mine's in India. Read this earlier post about it. Sure you don't because, sometimes you are ABSONDING, at other times you are fooling the Railways. Pls don't Sir - it's time we made some progress.

Haji Yaqub Qureshi (UP Haj Minister !) - This portfolio itself is very strange by the way - caught travelling without travel documents.
Dear Minister Sir: Pls don't cry conspiracy. Actually, most people are NOT surprised with the fact that - our leaders - are the first among all to - break laws.

With these state of affairs - its no wonder -
  • Crooks hang around the railway station reservation counters.
  • Rallyists consider their birth right to barge into reserved compartments and travel.
  • Very large number of occupants of Passenger Trains, and Unreserved Compartments in trains across UP, Bihar and Orissa - do not buy tickets.
Lets hope the situation improves.

Kudos to the Railway Officials - for their fight against corruption. Thankyou.

Of black-coated TCs and ticketless travel
Bihar Minister fined for ticketless travel
Railway stations synonymouswith chaos and corruption

Monday, September 18, 2006

Corrupt and Poor HealthCare across India - WHY?

Some shocking stories

Unattended dead body eaten by rats in public hospital
Complete Story:

Sweepers play doctors in Bihar hospital
Complete Story:

Most injections in India unsafe
Complete Story:

This is NOT ubelievable in a country - where conditions in govt. hospitals across the country are apalling to say the least.

Dear Health Minister : Ramadoss - Sleeping Or Playing petty political games?

The World Health Organization norms state that there should be one doctor per 2,500 people, India has one doctor per 1000 people, with Maharashtra one doctor per 1100 people and Mumbai with one doctor per 700 people.

Yet, our government hospitals are one of the worst in the world ?

In India it is the privilege of every health minister to start a medical college in his/her constituency. Just like the first thing that the Railway Minister does is to start new trains to his/her constituency.

What a shame. Quality NOT Quantity - is what we need.


Where a Cuddle With Your Baby Requires a Bribe
Rash of medical colleges spawn corruption and mediocrity:
Health care is among the most corrupt services in India
Price of Insanity
Most Indians can't afford healthcare

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Extent of Corruption - State Wise

Darker the color - more corrupt the state.
(As measured in 2005 study by Transparency International, India)

Driving License Test Inspectors - Selling Tickets ! Buy Or Else !!

The inspectors who test your driving skills at RTO office (for a driving license), EXPECT you to pay up one way or another. So, to ensure that they are not caught red handed - they have resorted to subtle extortion techniques.

Once you have shown them your driving skills, they will present you with a number of tickets of some esoteric Play or Show - each costing at least 100 rupees. And yes you are subtly told that - you HAVE TO buy at least a couple of them.

The message being - if you do not - you may be failed in your driving test.
This is indeed unique !!

Check this out for yourself in Bangalore.

Isn't it a well known fact that - RTO centers pretty much all over India - are dens of corruption !

Wasting Tax Payers Money - and How !

Babu's of Karnataka govt. are on to a 3 nation trip to China, Malaysia and Thailand - ostensibly to study Metro Rails there.


  • There does not seem to be a single qualified engineer in your foreign junket team - so how will you do your study ? By hopping on train rides from station to staion ?
  • Chief Secretary of the state - B.K.Das - was on this trip - and he will retire almost immediately upon his return ! What contribution will he make ? A person no less than Lokayukta N. Venkatachala had blamed Chief Secretary B.K.Das for shielding corrupt officials earlier:
  • Who are your contact persons in these countries ?
  • Delhi Metro has been successfully running for quite sometime - why not study that ?

Shame on the government junkies, for looting Tax Payer's Money. Shame on you guys.

M. Karunanidhi (CM Of Tamil Nadu) distributes Television Sets for free - as promised in before elections.


  • With the Tax Payer's money - are you not trying to bribe people with free television sets?
  • Did the people who paid taxes, give you any mandate for such activity? Thousands of Crores of Rupees will be spent on this.
  • Primary Education and Employment Opportunities - is the need of hour. What a shame - let the poor people watch tv, and remain hungry and uneducated ?

Such Political Gimmicks should be declared unconstitutional. What a shame - that such folks are tolerated and voted back to power - again and again.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Govt. Babu's suspend an Engineer for doing his job

An Engineer has been suspended because he cut off power lines to Chief Minister (Maharashtra) residence, because of non-payment of electricity bills.

What do Govt. Babu's do next?
No, they did not rush to pay the bills. Instead they spend time justifying the suspension the Engineer.

Are the law's different for Ministers and Ordinary Citizens? It seems so.
Out Govt. Babu's are so used to falling at the feet of their Political Masters, that they forget the basics of their own work. Wow.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

China's Growth - Time to Wake Up and Learn.

Consider these:

  • China is close to achieving universal (100%) literacy, while we are wallowing at 60%.
  • Electricity production in China is nearly three times higher than in India.
  • The rate of malnutrition in children under five years in China is only about a quarter of the shamefully high 46 per cent level in India.
  • Life expectancy in China is a solid 8 years higher that in India.
  • Female adult literacy is nearly double India's pathetic 45 per cent.
  • China's poverty ratio (as estimated by the World Bank's dollar-a-day income criterion) was less than half India's 35 per cent.
  • In India we take great pride in the telecom 'revolution' of the past decade. Despite that, in 2003 the number of landlines and mobiles in India was only one-sixth the number in China.
  • In 2004-05 our economic spokesmen expressed satisfaction over $80 billion of merchandise exports. China exported $600 billion worth of merchandise in that period.
  • FDI is more than 10 times in China than in India.
  • Tourist Arrivals - 33 million in china(excluding HongKong), compare this with 3 million in India.
  • In 2004, China's Foreign Exchange Reserves were more than 4.5 times India's.
  • While we were debating upgrading our airports, China built several new ones. Our infrastructure is pot-holed at best.
  • China is a world beater in Sports. India is yet to see a individual Gold Medal in Olympics.

We are poor on each of these indicators of Progress. BUT, do we expect anything different?

  • Given the fact that almost 20% of Indian Parliamentarians have criminal charges against them. See Earlier Post.
  • Quota and Caste based Politics is what is discussed in the Parliament. Where is the time for Infrastructure Development?
  • Institutionalized Corruption is rampant. See Earlier Post.
  • MPs and MLAs accept money to topple governments in states (Remember the Ajit Jogi Case?).

So, Where is the time to work on development? Whatever little progress we have made; has been largely by the Private Sector. Not Because of the govt.; but inspite of of the govt.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Congress: Oops, Sorry. Sep 7 was not Vande Mataram Centenary.

Need we say more?

Is this how irresponsible Congress, HRD Ministry, and very venerable Shree Arjun Singh is ?

So, Mr Arjun Singh Jee - don't you owe an answer to the country; as to what was the basis on which HRD Ministry under your esteemed leadership issued a notification to the affect of Centenary Celebrations of Vande Mataram ?

Well - Politicians are not answerable to anyone. Isn't it ?

MP: Sadhu Yadav - has 2 Non-Bailable Warrants Issued Against him.

Dear MP (Member of Parliament),

We are no longer shocked to hear this kind of news. People have developed big shock absorbers since independence; because of the fact that the word Politician has become synonymous with Corruption.

Well, Two Arrest Warrants (Non-Bailable) have been issued against you; Sadhu Yadav Jee.
  • One warrant is related to Flood Relief Scam. We don't know what happened to those flood affected people.
  • Other one is related to assaulting a candidate for the post of chief of Phulwaria block development committee, Dinesh Sah in Gopalganj district.
If you are spending time indulging in these cases, when do you get time to think over important matters of alleviation of poverty, doing away with caste system, and india's economy and defence?

We understand that inept, inefficient and corrupt people get elected because of - vicious cycle of poor; ignorant people voting for them; and politicians ensuring that people are kept poor and ignorant.

Ordinary Citizen of India

Monday, September 11, 2006

Land Grabbing and Daridra Narayan.

Deve Gowda - self-proclaimed Son of Soil, self-proclaimed Daridra Narayan:

  • Accused IT Companies and especially Narayana Murthy of Land Grabbing. Does he know that IT Companies have generated lakhs of jobs in the state; which he never could.
  • Accused Ashok Kheny's NICE (and therefore BMIC infrastructure project) of Land Grabbing. Does he know that this infrastructure project will result in unprecedented development of Bangalore neighborhoods.
  • And in a master stroke installed his son as CM of Karnataka. And before that could happen, the would-be CM had to roam around with a bus-load of MLAs in a bus to prevent MLAs from jumping over (This precedent was already set in Uttar Pradesh earlier). This is how politicians are; they need to be hoarded away, else someone may lure them away :)

And much more.

Earlier, Mr Deve Gowda had promised that he would “slit his throat” in case it was proved that either he or any of his family members owned land near the Bangalore-Mysore Infrastructure Corridor (BMIC). Read:

BUT, the same Daridra Narayan and his family is now accused of the Very Same Thing. Land Grabbing.

And what happens next is:

Gowdas resort to panic-selling :

Why Deve Gowda is Bad for Bangalore:
The decline of Bangalore:

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Railway Minister on Safety - At His Best.

'Indian Railways are the responsibility of Lord Vishwakarma. So is the safety of passengers . . it is His duty, not mine. I have been forced to don His mantle,' the Railway Minister Laloo Prasad Yadav said on 1 July.

Boarding a A Train: Pray to God:

A new reason for railway problems:

This being the case - you urgently need to leave your position OR read Bhagavad Gita, and learn about doing your Karma. And definitely NOT attempt to take any credit for Freight Earnings. They happened because God wanted it that way Sir.

A Letter to Laloo Jee - Rail Mantri

Dear Laloo Jee,

You are soon going to address the IIM(A) about how you managed to bring about some profit in Indian Railways. Very Nice Sir.

We have some questions for you.
Aren't you the same guy:

  • Who mismanaged and ruined Bihar for almost a decade. It is one of the poorest and most illiterate states in India. OfCourse your predecessors are responsible too. But, did you know sir that - Bihar was among the top 5 best managed states in India at the time of independence!
  • Who thrust upon Bihar, your wife (Shreemati Rabri Jee); who was always more bothered about managing her residence than the state.
  • Against whom there is a case pending about - Chara Ghotala. Ofcourse, the case continues, so you do have benefit of doubt. But, most people do not doubt.
  • Who's brother-in-law, Sadhu Yadav, has serious cases of murder, and hooliganism pending in court. And he too was in jail recently (just like you). But ofcourse he is a Member of Parliament now.
  • Who gave RJD party ticket to renowned history sheeter, Shahabuddin against whom charges of Murder and more are pending in court. But ofcourse he is a Member of Parliament now.
  • Who is wasting tax payers money on building railway lines specifically for his in-laws village. Sir, there are more towns in India which require your kind attention too.

We definitely have e-ticketing initiative and a few more that are useful. But, is this all we expect of a Railway Minister.

Don't we need the following:

  • Cleaner Railway Stations.
  • Adequate Parking Space outside Railway Stations. Have you observed, that CONSISTENTLY, it is the areas outside railway stations in every city, that are very unclean and dirty. But that may not be your problem.
  • Travel Ticket Examiners (TTEs) - who do not expect bribe for giving you a reservation. Ofcourse, there are good folks too; but what do you do with the bad ones.
  • Cleaner decent Cloak Rooms at Railway Station. Have you been to the one at New Delhi Railway Station ? If not, you should visit.
  • Removal of crooks roaming near reservation counters, who promise a reservation when the reservation clerk says none is available.
  • And above all safe rail travel for everyone. (This deserves a separate post sir.)
  • And ofcourse, Privatize your operations where you can.

But, coming back to the railway profits, sir we understand that these are a direct result of increased freight traffic, which in turn is due to increased industrialization. Kudos to Railway Bureaucrats for making use of this opportunity, and to you sir, for simply allowing them to perform.


Friday, September 08, 2006

Browbeating the Witness - Bina Ramani

A key witness (Bina Ramani) in Jessica Lal case has been arrested apparently on charges not directly related to this case. This while the prime accused roams free.

WHAT exactly is police or the legal system going to acheive? - WHAT, effect is it going to have?
  • The Witness will be discredited perhaps.
  • Fewer and fewer witnesses will come forth in future. As it is, they don't. EXACTLY for These Reasons.

HAS, the government ever thought through - WHY witnesses do not want to stand up ?

  • It's a DIRECT result of Poor Law and Order Situation in the Country.
  • Harassment of witnesses by Police and Goons.

Justice would be served well; if Truth Wins, and Not just whoever has got the Smartest Lawyer.

It is no secret that the very thought of facing the courts in India leaves the common man with a sense of dread and despair. Who or what is responsible for this situation? Where have we lost our way?

An Excellent Book on this subject: 'India's Legal System: Can it be Saved' by Fali S. Nariman (Leading Jurist) :

Related post: Punishing the Victims

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Nehru on Reservations - Congress, Sonia Jee, Arjun Singh Jee - Did you Read Or is it a case of Selective Amnesia !

Pandit Nehru’s letter to Chief Ministers on June 27, 1961

I have referred above to efficiency and to our getting out of our traditional ruts. This necessitates our getting out of the old habit of reservations and particular privileges being given to this caste or that group. The recent meeting we held here, at which the chief ministers were present, to consider national integration, laid down that help should be given on economic considerations and not on caste. It is true that we are tied up with certain rules and conventions about helping Scheduled Castes and Tribes. They deserve help but, even so, I dislike any kind of reservation, more particularly in service. I react strongly against anything which leads to inefficiency and second-rate standards. I want my country to be a first class country in everything. The moment we encourage the second-rate, we are lost.

The only real way to help a backward group is to give opportunities for good education. This includes technical education, which is becoming more and more important. Everything else is provision of some kind of crutches which do not add to the strength or health of the body. We have made recently two decisions which are very important: one is, universal free elementary education, that is the base; and the second is scholarships on a very wide scale at every grade of education to bright boys and girls, and this applies not merely to literary education, but, much more so, to technical, scientific and medical training. I lay stress on bright and able boys and girls. I have no doubt that there is a vast reservoir of potential talent in this country if only we can give it opportunity.

But if we go in for reservations on communal and caste basis, we swamp the bright and able people and remain second-rate or third-rate. I am grieved to learn of how far this business of reservation has gone based on communal consideration. It has amazed me to learn that even promotions are based sometimes on communal and caste considerations. This way lies not only folly, but disaster. Let’s help the backward groups by all means, but never at the cost of efficiency. How are we going to build our public sector or indeed any sector with second-rate people?


54 Miners Feared Dead - Who's Responsible?

Jharia (Dhanbad), Jharkhand - 54 miners trapped in a mine, and feared to be dead.

  • "This is an unprecedented situation and the chances of their survival are zero" Partha Bhattacharya, chairman of Bharat Coking Coal Limited.
  • The Union Minister of Coal, Shri Shibu Soren, ordered a departmental inquiry into the accident.
  • Jharkhand Chief Minister Arjun Munda visited the mine and announced a compensation of Rs one lakh for the families of the dead.

All the above are usual sound and action bytes, post accident.
Why shouldn't the people managing the mines be held responsible for this accident?

Mr Coal Minister (Shree Shibu Soren) - when will Safety Standards in indian mines upgraded? When will human life have a value?

Chief Minister (Shree Arjun Munda Jee) - you will not have to fight for your survival in Jharkhand; if you fight for survival of ordinary citizens. Do you even have time for your citizens?

Media - This clearly is NOT breaking news for the frivolous, sensation crazy media of our country. NOT a single print or television media ran this story prominently. As this unfortunate story unfolded, we had politician after politician espousing their new found nationalism in the national song; not one of them had anything to say on this issue?

Safety Statistics of COAL Mines in India:

Are we just keen on ensuring that there are no violations of safety standards as per regulations? Don't Administrators need to ACTIVELY do whatever it takes to ensure safety?

Isn't every situation unique. Not everything can ever be found in a rule book. We need to follow rules and laws in their SPIRIT as well, not just in LETTER.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Why do Criminals get Elected in India?

Democracy is a Numbers Game. And anyone who has the numbers can get elected.

Every Vote Counts.
So, everytime we hear the lament: "It is the citizens who vote for criminals and elect them therefore they themselves are responsible" - it riases questions around - who exactly is voting for them and WHY ??

Its the vote banks of various kinds which are at work on the basis of : Caste, Illiteracy, Poverty, Linguistic, minority, religious and so on. So, if you know how to exploit these numbers - you have made it ! Therefore, there is a vested interest in propagating the idea of caste, preserving illiteracy, and bless proliferation of slums.

On the face of it everyone wants progress, hence it should be the biggest vote bank of ALL. But it is clearly NOT WORKING - we throw up large number of useless inept politicians along with criminals into Parliament and Assemblies every time. There is something wrong fundamentally here.

There indeed are good men too; but in very small minority.

No Alternative Syndrome is at work too. Whom do you vote for - if all the candidates in your constituency standing for elections are crooks. This situation is very very common, and arises because honest good citizens do not enter the business of politics. WHY NOT.
India still does not have a critical mass of honest politicians who genuinely want to do good for its citizens. So, they are surrounded, by local hooligans and dishonest men. And they simply drown in this mess, and cannot function - leave alone winning an election. (You would know that - Manmohan Singh lost election from South Delhi - numbers just didn't add up for him!)

So, whats the way ahead?
Awareness. Speak Up. Make your vote count. Refuse to tolerate corrupt politicians. Vote for Progress - yes it does not seem to be working yet, but it will when the Vote Bank for Progress is big enough. Anyway, its better than letting dishonest men sleep in positions of power.

When President Abdul Kalam returned an ordinance for reconsideration, this is what Mulayam Singh Yadav (Chief Minister of one of the largest, most backward, and illiterate state in india) had to say: "...In future, the President better be mindful of the constitutional traditions before embarking on such steps."
Read on:

Land of Elected Criminals (by columnist Tavleen Singh):

Empowering Every Vote:

If Criminals get elected - They will no longer run from law - They will frame it for you and me.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Punishing the Victims?

Consider These:

Zahira Sheikh. Sure you remember her as a witness in ghastly tale of the death of her family members. And later as a witness who flip-flopped on her testimonies to the court, and therefore punished by imprisonement for this.

Bharti Yadav. She has been declared a proclaimed offender in the Nitish Katara case.

  • In both the cases - these people are victims first, and witnesses later.
  • In the first case - There are innumerable testimonies of refusal of police to record the names of the accused. How many of these have been punished? And men who threatened and intimidated witnesses, are roaming free.
  • Instead of law being inclined to prosecuting the victims for contempt of court, it should be noted that - witnesses fear their own harrasment and fear of life (which is very much a reality). When will the police and law deal with this aspect?

Read this very well written article by Harsh Mander (Human Rights Activist) here:,curpg-1.cms

To quote from the above mentioned article:
"But it must be remembered that in contrast to most hostile witnesses in cases like Jessica Lal, Zahira was and remains above all a victim."

Another one by Rakesh Shukla (SC Advocate):

"Laws are spider webs through which the big flies pass and the little ones get caught. ~Honoré de Balzac"

Monday, September 04, 2006

Media Madness...

Have you observed the falling standards of large sections of India Media? Sure you have.

Times of India(TOI) - takes the crown in print media, while Star News - on television.

Here are some shining examples:

  • TOI - doesn't even look like a News Paper any longer. Its a tabloid with 'sensational' stories, and missing news. Regional News Papers have better coverage. The front page is the unworthiest part of the paper, as it has only 'masala' news. What a shame.
  • Star News/Aaaj Tak - Give them an opportunity to report some individual's misery; they will jump at it, and become reporters and judges in a very irresponsible manner.
  • It is common for news channels to have some semi-celebrities wedding as Prime Time News; which they will discuss with elite panel of specialists. Hahaha!
  • 'Breaking News' - has got a completely new meaning now. That is usually any news that you think you are first to report irrespective of its importance. Now, thats breaking news for you !
  • Where is International News, News Analysis, views of eminent people? When did we last see news about WHY the floods were happening and how we can prevent them ?
  • If you started believe frivilous media reports - you would think that we are about to turn into a Super Power!! But, reality is we have floods, droughts, hunger, corruption and poverty to deal with.

On brighter side, NDTV is by far the best, followed by CNN-IBN.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Unauthaorized Accomodation: by Ministers, Politicians, Govt. Officers and even Judges!

Even as Uttar Pradesh continues to be among the most poorest and crime-prone states in India, its leaders do not hesitate to occupy unauthorized accomodation.

Among these: Ministers, Politicians, Govt. Officers and even Judges! Can you believe this? Of course you do. This is not unheard of in India.

It took the SC to ask them to vacate such accomodation.
Given a chance - our Netas will NOT hesistate to misuse their position of power; which they can use to achieve a lot!


Friday, September 01, 2006

Dismal State of Sports in India - under the clutches of Politicians

Every four years, Indian teams depart to compete in the Olympic Games, only to return with bagful of woes.

Before Athens, the only other medal India had ever won in an individual sport at the Olympics was also a bronze in wrestling at the 1952 Games in Helsinki.

THAT sums up the state of Sports in India.

If Sports in India has to make any progress, it should be rescued from the clutches of Politicians.

  • Sports Administrators cling on to their chairs, for the sake of perks.
  • Most Sports Federations have Politicans and people who don't have a clue about Sports Administration heading them (Dalmiya, Kalmadi, Dasmunshi among others). These people have been clinging to their posts for many many years without much to show for the results.
  • National Games are held erratically, nobody knows when the next one is coming up!
  • Huge number of officials accompany sports persons especially to Olympics. Can they justify their time there (nobody minds the Shopping Spree's if you indulge in if your produced results)!
  • Stenographer was sent to Sydney Olympics. Hehehe... bizzare! What letters were dictated to him ?

Sports Minister, IOA Chairman, Sports Administrators - Can you pls act or let more competent people occupy your places?

Some Shining Examples:

  • Priya Ranjan Das Mumshi (Politician) has been chairman of AIFF for as long as you can remember. Priya Ranjan Das Jee; do you know that some of the nations which participated in recent Football World Cup are as small as the districts of our states !
  • Suresh Kalmadi (Politician) has been clinging on to IOA for as long as you can remember. Suresh Kalmadi Jee; when will a nation of Billion Plus people produce more than a lone medal at Olympics. Does it even bother you?

Sports in clutches of self-serving Politicos:

Slower, lower, weaker: India at the Olympic Games

Medal Tally across Olympic Games:

Increasing cases of Misuse of Section 498A

Section 498A deals with a woman's right to file a complaint against her in-laws and get them arrested on grounds of abuse (dowry, physical, mental, etc..) . Filing a dowry case is as easy as ordering a pizza.

Eminent lawyer Bishnu Charan Ghosh says, “As a lawyer I have never come across such gross abuse of any of the provisions of any Act as I am experiencing in 498A IPC cases”.

Read on about its blatant misuse:
Some brides are ‘villains’, not victims: lawyers

Check Dowry Law Misuse by Women : HC


Taipei Times - Bitterness of wives leads to abuse of India's anti-dowry laws

Question is: Why Should A Law Exist Allowing For Arrest Of People Just Because Someone Filed A Complaint - NO , NOT EVEN PRELIMNARY INVESTIGATION REQUIRED !!!

It assumes in other words: Victims are guilty till proven innocent.
It is hard to find equivalent of such strange laws in rest of the world.

An extensive blog on this subject