My Take on the world events
I have views too and so do you.

Friday, July 29, 2005

Opening up the Railways to Private Investment?

Desipundit (one of the best sites to blogsurf) has a link to Michael Higgins' post on the concept of privatising Railways (and other such systems like Washington Metro)

Michael opines that the natural monopolies like the Railways do not have the incentive to invest in modernisation. The lacking incentive being "profit". The natural monopolies (which are invariably run by Govt or quasi govt institutions) are always touted to have a "socialist" goal where profit is a taboo.

However there is a bigger issue that both the Washington Metro and the Indian Railways share: these monopolies exhibit underinvestment. Instead of seeing new technology, we see the old technology persisting, and wearing out. Why is that? Well, if you price your commodity below cost, why would you want to invest more money in the production of it? Profits are the enticement that leads to new investment over time. But you need to be free to raise prices if you want to profit from improved service.
He rightly points to the way these services are priced:

In almost all cases, there is an attempt to set the price equal to average cost. Average cost pricing means no profits and therefore the consumer is getting the lowest possible price that can keep the natural monopoly going. Sometimes, the price is set below average cost and the government subsidizes the monopoly directly from tax revenue.

The complete Post is worth a read

The idea to price these services just equal to or below the average cost is purely for the socialist reason and the advocates of this theory will obviously believe that if the private arm is allowed to venture in such initiatives, they will have "profit" on their minds and the social good of the people at large will be lost. I am surprised that the capitalist economies like the USA also support this theory to some extent.

Even if we agree that we should price these services at cost or below cost, the following points beg an answer:

  1. Do these organizations (especially Indian Railways or Mumbai Locals) have the right tools and expertise to determine the actual cost of running these services?
  2. Do they have the visibility to all the indirect and directs costs of these services?
  3. Does the Government also consider the opportunity costs?
  4. A comment by Kaps in Michael's post points to the ticket less travellers. What about the cost to carry them?
  5. Do the railway authorities have the "authority" to discount the vacant occupancy on some of our trains and price them differently? Like this
There is one point which Michael has not mentioned in his post: Differential Pricing.

The Indian Railways also believe in "Differential Pricing" of a different sort. The one where the monopoly decides to cost the lower end services at par or below cost and price the higher end services (read First Class etc) at a much higher price and make up the losses. That is one of the reasons why the prices of First Class are much higher than that of the others. The cost of extra benefits awarded to these classes are supposed to be far less than the difference in prices. The age old adage "Haves to pay for Have Nots"

The Differential Pricing Theory will price the service / commodity equal to or more than the marginal willingness (utility) rather than the marginal cost. Thus if some sections of the society are willing to pay more for a slightly improved service, they are catered to at that price. This works both ways and does not necessarily mean higher prices. Even the concept of "Last minute discounts" is based on this concept.

However Michael scores a bulls eye in his post about how the private sector can run the show and the Govt can have quasi control of their activities. The Surplus generated in this set up will be pumped back to the society and thus creates a win win situation. This will also help improve the quality of the service.

On a side note though, I am highly impressed by the slight modernisation of the reservation counters in India. Step (albeit small) in the right (no pun intended here) direction.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

The Ganguly Gaga Continues

Read this.

Justice Albie Sachs has reduced the ODI ban on Indian cricket captain
Sourav Ganguly from six-match to four-match ban

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Ain't Mine English correct?

British Council to teach English to Bengali techies

In a clear admission that students in West Bengal need better communication skills in English than what they can boast of now, the West Bengal University of Technology (WBUT) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the British Council at the Council’s library in Kolkata this morning.

The admission of the lacunae that some of us have with the language of the "sahibs" is heartening as well as frightening in some sense.

So, what do you all think?

BTW - A small quiz for all of you linguists
Which of the following is correct?

1. Nobody likes a dog that bites
2. Nobody likes a dog which bites

Post your answers in the comment.... As for me, English is not my cup of tea :-)

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

G4 - AU agreement

The latest "League of Nations" may actually become "United Nations" for the first time since its inception because of the agreement that has been bartered in between the G4 and the AU.

As for the (f)utility of the the UN - more will follow later and your views on the same are more than welcome.

Something Different....

Something from my past --- thankfully it does not haunt me --- because my present is far far more beautiful

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Gandhi, Queen Victoria, Hitler and Marilyn Monroe connection

So what do Mahatma Gandhi, Queen Victoria, Adolf Hitler and Marilyn Monroe have in Common? In fact add to the list the following :Dean, Audrey Hepburn and John F Kennedy, is Muhammad Ali, Elvis.

This Report says that all of these were masters of image control and could use their image (litereally) towards their respective causes.

Quoted from the article:

......Indian leader Mahatma Gandhi as a skilled self-publicist, who harnessed the media to great effect. A pair of pictures, taken over 40 years apart, shows him as a young lawyer, the picture of British middle class, wearing bow tie and winged collar, and later as an Indian in ordinary dress, who would appeal to the masses.

Adolf Hitler initially kept photographers away, but came to recognize their importance as a propaganda tool. The leader`s favourite photographer, Heinrich Hoffman, and assistants took an estimated 2.5 million pictures of the Fuehrer from 1935 to 1945.

While on the the topic of Mahatma Gandhi and the use of his image, here is an interesting site of Foundation for Better Life which is using the images of Mahatma Gandhi and others to inspire people to do better in life. These Billboards are placed in California and am sure are making a difference to the lives of people. Do have a look at all of them (Link)

Billboard used by Fondation for Better Life

Movie and a Makeover

This is interesting - We now have a movie on Sonia Gandhi and her love for an Indian and India. Seriously folks, have we all lost our sense of finding an Ideal or an Idol in our life?

Ask a young child, who his or her ideal / idol is? The answer will be one of the following:

1. Sachin Tendulkar
2. Shah Rukh Khan (if not no. 4)
3. Amitabh Bachchan
4. Aamir Khan (if not no.2)
5. Abhijit Sania - did I get the name right?
6. Rahul Dravid
7. Sourav Ganguly (not in Mumbai)
8. Sania Mirza ( a
child well read or not)
9. Narain Karthikeyan
10. Sonia Gandhi
11. Bal Thackeray
12. Advani (Last Three names are just indicative of the
descend of our choices and are not in any particular preference).

Where are the names that SHOULD be our ideals or idols. The names which should inspire us to live by the virtues that those individuals lived by. Do we really beleive that the Abhijit Sania who can sing and dance to the tunes of a channel IS the INDIAN IDOL.

Is Indian Idol just a show or our inability to have an idol?

Where are the Gandhis, Boses, Bhagat Singhs, Martin Luther Kings, Einsteins and hundreds of others who can be our idols....

In the contemporary world can India not find a single person who can be an idol for us, someone whose life will be a inspiration for all of us?

I am sure we can, we are just not looking for them. There are hundreds of people whose life is not only an inspiration for us but for the world.

Long time back I had read an article on Rediff about the life of some people who have changed their lives inspite of their so called lacunae. I am unable to locate it right now.

But my point is a dancing jack is not my Idol.... Is he yours?

More on the lack of fitting idols later.....

Quake in India again

Just read a news peice that Anadaman and east coast of India hit by a quake...Hope everyone is fine.........

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Shoot at Sight or Shoot from the Hip?

The alleged bomber who was shot a few days back by the London Police , 5 times I may add, has been found to be totally unconnected to the Bombings

Scotland Yard said Mr Menezes, who lived in Brixton, south London, was
completely unconnected to the bomb attacks and added: "For somebody to lose
their life in such circumstances is a tragedy and one that the Metropolitan
Police Service regrets."

This is very unfortunate and time will tell whether this act of the London police was governed by any superior orders or not.

The Law enforcers need to ensure that in the process of defending their Freedom they do not infringe the freedom of others and thus stoop low to the level of the terrorists who commit the similar crime

Sorry Mr. Rane!

Mr. Rane did you read my blog?

Anways, sorry for now you have done the right thing.... I mean the "resigning part"... about the rest of your decisions ..... time will tell.


Indian Express voices my thoughts exactly. Are we heading towards illiberalism?

Friday, July 22, 2005

Sanity at last

BJP decides not to boycott the Monsoon Session. So some work will be done at last. Sanity returns or not?

Leisure - as taught by Sai

What is life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows.

No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.

No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night.

No time to turn at Beauty's glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance

No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.

A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

Leisure - W.H. Davies

The poem is so true in the lives of most of us.

Do we live because we are alive
or are we alive because we live?

We need to find the time to discover ourselves and the world around us.

W.H. Davies wonderfully describes the loss of time and need that we posses, to admire simple yet beautiful things.

Why do I post this today?

I woke up last night around two and saw my beautiful daughter asleep. The sheer innocence in her sleep and the saintly look of hers made me realise that in my Topsy turvy life of work and chores, I may not have taken the time to enjoy her childhood and before I know it, it may be gone.

No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.

So from today, I promise her and myself that I will live to be alive and enjoy what the world throws my way.

I will not lead a poor life full of care
and I will have time to stand and stare

Thanks Sai for teaching this to me in your sleep.

Twenty Twenty - to be or not to be

Two peices of news regarding India's willingness to join the 20 / 20 cricket bandwagon

1. Reports that India refused to play England in that form of cricket (Link)
2. Reports that 20 / 20 will be experimented in India with international cricketers (Link)

What next?

Dalmiya clarifying that the 2nd news report is not correct and that BCCI will not allow its players to play in those matches.... Lets wait and see

Retail Industry - FDI Required?

I believe that the next boom in India (after cell phones) is going to be in the Retail Industry. Our Coutry is experiencing the bom in the Car segment too.

An interesting article advocating support to FDI in that sector.

I think that the big business houses already have set their eyes on this segment. Watch out for Tata and Ambanis to venture big time in this space.

Are we still a democracy?

Mr. Manmohan Singh, you were wrong when you promised the US Congress that we are the largest democracy. I do not doubt the "largest" part. But are you sure we are still a democracy?

This latest report from Gujrat, which is no doubt an infringement of the personal rights, makes me wonder if we are actually moving towards a so called "moral anarchy". This is supposed to curb the love marriages which take place without the consent of the parents. I as a proud father of a daughter should feel relieved, should I? The Report says:

Officials in the sub-registrar's office said that the state government issued a notification recently, stating that a marriage would be registered only if parents of both the bride and the groom give their consent.

Earlier, marriages were registered even if the bride and groom produced their age certificates, and were accompanied by witnesses.

This is absurd and as Amit Varma rightly points out, are we going backwards?

Yesterday, the moral police led my Mr. RR banned the dance bars, today Mr. Modi decides to ban Love marriages which do not have the consent of the parents.

I remember my Registered Marriage and how corrupt the system (or actually user friendly) was at that time. More on that sometime later.

Rane Sahab -Kya Hua?

Hmm -- so this latest report about the Abhimanyu of Shiv Sena joining arch rivals Congress, sets me thinking, about how easily our elected representatives and politicians (some are not elected) take us " the common junta" for granted.

It makes me furious to know that if I elect (rather vote for) someone becuase he / she belongs to a particular ideology / thinking / party etc, I do that assuming that the person will stay true to his words and ideology. Won't I? Who gives that person the right to take me for granted and switch camps - that too the diagonally opposite ones?

I am not a supporter of Shiv Sena and absolutely would never vote for Mr. Rane in any case, but then his electorate, somewhere in the forgotten Konkan area, surely voted him to keep the Congress / NCP candidate out.

I am not against a person switching parties, he / she may choose so. But then it is the duty of that individual to ascertain that his electorate is not taken for granted.

Next time I vote, what do I do?

Stree Mukti? Stree Shakti?

Interesting take by Supreme Court on the Dowry Law

Merely because the provision is constitutional, it does not give a licence to unscrupulous persons to wreck personal vendetta or unleash harassment...It may, therefore, become necessary for the legislature to find out ways how the makers of frivolous complaints or allegations can be appropriately dealt with.

Ashes - It is all Happening...

Wow - The most awaited series for quite some time, actually delivers what it promised in the last 2 months.

- a serious bid by Eng that they have what is required to challenge and if possible defeat the invincibles
- a rebuttal of the above by Aussies

I can't wait to see what happens next....

McGrath and Harmison deliver the punch

I hope Pieterson can stand long enough to make a match out of it and prove that Eng is better off with him rather than Thorpe

As for the other match up between SL and WI which I thought would be a lop sided game is turning out to be quite a contest as well........

...... and the Cricket starved US enthusiasts have to rely on the Web for all this Fun....

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Naach Meri Bulbul

--- ke paisa milega... Kahan Kadardaan tujhe aisa (take a bow Mr RR) milega?

The Moral Police finally do the unthinkable......

So, Salman can ask Aish to dance for Abu Salem but no one else can now ask anyone else to dance... for anything.

We all are dancing to the tunes of Mr. RR Patil. I hope he does not read this post from Amit Varma.

Mr RR - Where are the next stpes to ban all else that you despise of?

I have never been to a dance bar and not that I want to go there, but I am completely against this "thrust my morals down your throat" attitude that has crept in lately.

Gandhi - where art thou?

In furtherance of my previous posts on Non Violence and its relevance in today's world.....

I came across this Article in the Telegraph by Charles Moore asking Where is the Gandhi of Islam?

When a nation, a race, a political movement, a group of workers, the followers of a religion have legitimate grievances, there generally arises amongst them a champion who can command respect for his advocacy of peace, his willingness to fight without weapons and to win by moral authority. There may be many such grievances for Muslims in Britain, and in the West, but we are still waiting for the Gandhi or the Martin Luther King to give them the right voice.

Where have the avenues for global dialogue gone? Where are the forums to discuss the grievances of peoples of the world? With UN never becoming what it should have been and turning into another "League of Nations" which gave birth to Nazism, where should the voices go?

As I said in one of my previous posts, Bang is the only voice we listen to.

Another interesting article is about the book release on July 6, about non violence.

Mahatma Gandhi says, "It is not enough to refrain from taking the life of a living being. He who has pledged himself to this vow may not kill, even those whom he believes to be unjust; he may not be angry with them, he must love them. He will not carry out the tyrants will but he will suffer punishment even unto death for disobeying his will until the tyrant himself is won over."

Non Violent - Am I? Can I?

A question from my last post

However the question is "Would you be non violent and if so to what degree?"

I am a firm beleiver in non violence, but then it makes me think that do I believe only because I have not been put in a tough spot.

Would I have had the courage to stand in front of the brutal Lathi Charge of the British, in that era? Would you?
If someone comes to my house and slaps me would I be non violent?
If someone comes to my house and rapes someone I love would I be non violent?

The Mahatma said that if someone slapped you in one cheek, give him the other cheek.

So what is the Cheek a metaphor for? Gandhiji please explain......

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Non Violence - A Stitch in Time

Non Violence - a tool, a weapon, an armor for Terrorism?

Mahatma Gandhi and others in his era advocated non violence as the path to freedom. Freedom from the British Raj, Freedom to self govern, Freedom to decide for ourselves, Freedom from Monarchy, Freedom from Anarchy, Freedom from foreign rule, Freedom of Speech.

Sound Familiar in the current context? All the same demands that some groups, organizations and peoples are making. The goals in some areas are the same, but the paths are different. Do not be mistaken, I am not comparing the Indian Freedom struggle with Al Qaueda movement. However there are various supporters of Al Quaeda who support (tacitly) the cause only because they require the above mentioned demands.

Non Violence as many believe is an act of cowardice, and act of non confrontation, an act of weakness. But Non Violence requires more courage, more determination and does not advocate non confrontation, but advocates confrontation without violence (at least from one end).

However the question is "Would you be non violent and if so to what degree?"

Monday, July 18, 2005

Terrorism as the world sees it now

The 9/11 changed the world in many ways for many people. It was a defining moment for some. The fall out of that day is still resounding in many ways and surely there are hundreds who still curse the horrific day.

The 7/7 too has its share of defame and the era post 7/7 will be a bit different from the era of 9/11.

The world (most of the western for sure) looked upon Terrorism as an "imported", "alien" item which reached its shores as a response. The terrorists came to the shores, unleashed their hatred and died in the process.

However post 7 /7 Terrorism, as the world now realizes, can be a home grown factor. It is no longer something that has come to you, but in many ways can be something that was with you all the time. Many of us cannot fathom why educated young people who have families and a good life for themselves, decide to end their lives and also of other innocent people. At the same time I am sure there are many others who cannot understand why we do not "understand" their stand. The Debate continues.......

Here are a few interesting articles from people across the world on the London Killings:

1. An Interesting Debate on one of the USA Today Articles on the Lessons of 7/7. This Debate with its points and counter points firms up my belief that the resentment is lurking around and we need to provide a vent to it. We should agree to disagree and agree to co exist.

2. An Article on why or how the army lines are being drawn and how the recruitment works

"AL QAIDA is secretly recruiting affluent, middle-class Muslims in British
universities and colleges to carry out terrorist attacks in the UK, leaked
Whitehall documents reveal"

3. Ibtissam Al-Bassam ( a former dean of King Fahd Academy in London and a present staff member of UNESCO) argues how the innocent are the only ones who fall victim in this world o politics where the whole world is a battleground

In violence only the innocent fall.

4. Zafar Agha elsewhere opines that Iraqi occupation is the main reason why Al Qaida can fill its ranks (Interestingly more than 2 /3rds in Britain feel that Iraq is the cause for the London effect)

Every nation and every race hates occupation. Americans did. They fought a
bitter war of independence against the British colonisers in their own country!
Didn't the American Blacks fought against white domination inside America!

5. At the same time the Allied front denies the Iraqi link

6. And while some part of the world argues that engaging the disoriented ordisgruntledd in talks is the way out, Vinod Meheta argues how can you meet the demands of these terrorists?

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Admit it you morons!

The last few weeks have seen an interesting twist in the Indian Politics. The kind which makes you sit back and wonder if the same has actually matured.

1. The comments by the Opposition Leader of India Mr. L.K. Advani in Pakistan about the Quaid -e -Azam of that country

2. The Speech by the Prime Minister of India Mr. Manmohan Singh at Oxford defining the Indo British relationship post freedom.

The former marks a significant switch in the ideology of the party which rose to power on communal feelings (At this moment, whether Mr. Advani can steer the party from a right wing to right of the center is yet to be seen). However more importantly it also marks a significant change in the mindset of our political leaders to see everything (or everyone) in black or white.
We have a tendency to idolize all our heroes or leaders and create a havoc (literally) if anyone points out any fallacy in their thinking. For us our Heroes / Leaders / Gurus are supreme and nothing can be wrong about them.
Similarly for us all our villains are villains with no virtues. The Ravan can be the greatest Shiv bhakt but that is something that we will not discuss.
The statement by Mr. Advani (one of the most well read leaders) marks a positive change in that mindset. I hope it translates down to all levels and we can see a day when the students in our country learn History as it actually was rather than how we wanted it to be.
Equally path-breaking (but less surprising as it comes from Mr. Singh) is the second admission of the nature of Indo Britain relationship. Mr. Singh rightly admits that India has obviously benefited in some matters from the British Raj. He does not fail to also point out that the Empire actually did suck the country dry of its wealth. But then surely there were a few positives from the Raj and we need to admit that.
Interestingly, they are the top two leaders in our hierarchy now and that speaks volume of the maturity that we as a responsible power can show.
Bravo to both the leaders.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Time to Introspect?

Rediff today has run a wonderful article on the hypocrisy of Indians and our blind faith which we sometimes refer to as our culture or nationalism. This article reminds me of a small skit that we had performed while in the college which was a sarcastic take on how we learn the Pledge by heart but defy it in every walk of our life (hypocrisy).

I think we all need to introspect our belief that all is well and that our "culture" is an answer to all that is wrong in the western societies. I recently had a debate with one of my friends on how the females in India actually believe that they ARE the weaker sex. Unless all and sundry actually believe that women are more that breeders and practice it, we should never bask in the relief that we respect our mothers and sisters.

Elsewhere our political leaders have thankfully started introspecting a bit and are honestly admitting to a few things which our history lessons have forgot. More on that in my next blog....

Wah Taj !

Are huzoor - Wah India boliye!!!

Taj Mahal - one of the wonders of the world. A place, which was an identity (sometimes the sole one) of India and its heritage. There was a time when India was known to the world outside only for the Mahatma and the Taj. Such was and is the popularity of this magnificent sculpture. I have been one of the fortunate ones to have seen the eternal beauty that it is.

Ek Shehenshah ne banwa ke hasin Taj Mahal,
Saari duniya ko mohabbat ki nishani di hai

The Taj Mahal in India has been called a poem in stone, a moon-white dream, a tear on the face of humanity. It is seen as the ultimate symbol of love and has been the subject of many a poems and "shers"

Taj Mahal is a symbol of Love
The love of a king for his queen.
Here lovers meet by moonlit nights
Lovers- Unsung! Unseen

- Syed Mohammad

tum jo hansti ho to mastana kanwal lagti ho...
meer ka shair ho ghaalib ki ghazal lagti hoo...
sang-e-mar-mar say tarasha hua shaffaf badan
saans leta hua ek taj mahal lagti ho...
- Sahir Ludhianwi

taj nagma hain mohabbat ke dhadakte saaz ka
yeh hai woh aaina jisme aks hain
mumtaz ka

The Taj Mahal however has also attracted its share of controversies:
  1. Was the Taj Mahal a Vedic Temple? Is it Taj Mahal or Tejo Mahalaya?
  2. The Taj Mahal is sinking
  3. The Taj Heritage Corridor Project
  4. The Taj ownership row with the Prince
  5. The Taj ownership issue with the Waqf
So the monument which symbolises love and beauty to many is not devoid of controversy, cause we all cannot take and appreciate what we have.

Hence I say "wah India boliye!"

But a silver lining of hope does exist when the Muslim League says that Taj Mahal is national property

I sincerely hope that common sense prevails and we all are saved of the ugly war that such controversies tend towards in our secular India

As much as Taj is the love metaphorized, here are a few intersting lines in the end

Ik Shehnsha ne banwa ke hasin taj mahal
hum garibon kee mohabat ka urhaya hai majak
Meri mehboob kahin aur mila kar mujh se!

An emperor had the beautiful Taj Mahal built
to make fun of love and emotions of poor people like us.
My love meet me some where else than Taj Mahal!

Friday, July 15, 2005

Salman - Hum aapke hain Don?

Salman Khan is once again in the midst of chaos and controversy. My wife says that no one can save him this time. She felt the same last time and the time before that. Actually, she is a fan of his but thankfully not a "fan"atic.

My counter arguement, if the Hulk can get away after killing a black buck, threatening Aish for umpteen times, killing a man by his drunk driving, increasing Vivek's phone bill etc etc.... what is the big fuss about this latest "audio evidence" which the police have had an aceess to for the last 4 years.

No rewards for answering that.... just wait and watch how this latest publicity gimick unveils.

My Terrorists are your Freedom Fighters?

Thomas L Friedman in his article Muslim Problem, Muslim Solution suggests that the Islamic militancy is on the rise because it enjoys somewhat of a popular following in the Islamic States. The Muslim polity needs to defy this by condemning these acts at all levels.

Robert Parry in one of his insightful articles points out the futility of trying to kill the Islamic militancy by attacking Muslim nations under the false pretext of saving the world and War on Terror.

B Raman in his article on Rediff about the 5 lessons from the London Bombings talks about how easy it is for someone with hatred on their mind to cause casualties, without any serious threat to get caught.

Also read an interview with someone who subscribes to the views of those who want to hurt the "imperialist forces."

I believe that Islamic militancy......I hate the word actually - even though I am a Hindu. The militancy cannot have a religion. Do we call the killings of innocents in Iraq and Christian Militancy. NO - Militants are militants and all religions have their share of bad apples.

The age old adage that someone's terrorists are someone else's freedom fighters comes to my mind all the time. I have had my own misconceptions about the terrorism saga in India and all my childhood believed that all the people from Khalistan Liberation, Kashmir and Naxal movement were people who have gone crazy and are completely wrong.

As much as I still despise and condemn the use of violence that any terrorist of "right aligned" organizations takes in making their voice heard, I have outgrown my belief that the voice of these organizations cannot be crushed by force but can surely be heard and given a vent in the democratic society.

Hunting the perpetrators of the horrendous killings of London, New York, Madrid, Ayodhya, Bombay, Israel and other similar places should surely be on the "to do list" of the civilized world. But they should not forget that the voice of those organizations and their demands cannot be muted. The bang is caused cause we do not listen to anything else. This is the sorry state of our politics and media. We discern the voice of the weak and wait until they take a unwarranted step, wherein we can punish them.

Kill the hatred and you will surely kill the terrorist.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Cricket Aid(s)?

At least the "religion" is being put to some good use rather than just idolizing the players J

This one has the picture in it

I like the campaigns and support that the activists are getting.

However is this enough?

Friday, July 08, 2005

The Fifth Nail - Blog or a blob?

The accused kidnapper and sex offender of IDAHO has purpotedly written a blog titled the "Fifth Nail".

He writes about his internal struggle. I am at a loss to comment on this until we know if he is just the accused or actually the offender.

May god give peace to those who are inflicted with pain by the crazy minds of his own creation.

Sometimes I feel that as a civilization / a society , we have failed to provide any avenues to vent out any hatred or anger that an individual may clog up. There are times and situations, where people have the feelings all clogged up waiting to explode. If the society does not allow them / us to vent the same, it will just explode some day resulting in the undesirable.

It is like the analogy that the brothels are the vents that society provides so that others can live in honor.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

London - We cry with thee

The Serial Bomb blasts in London which have killed more than 40 people and injured a lot more, make me shudder.

The Human life is so expensible now that, the people who have done this dastardly act actually beleive that they will not make an impact until they kill "X" number of people. Has Human life lost its value? Have we become so immune to such things that anyone who is wronged (or sometimes someone who just enjoys killing) think that they will not be "heard" until they make it bigtime in News and what better way than to "kill" people.

The people and the organizations who have done this need to be condemned and outcasted from all civilzations. The Politics of the World has made human life just so cheap.

A powerful nation targets the civillians to make an impact and on the other hand a powerless terrorist outfit does the same for a different agenda.

The people who lost their lives deserve a moment of silence and a small prayer for their beloved ones.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Terrorist Attack in Ayodhya

Take it from me, this attack in the Ayodhya Temple premises will surely turn out to be one of the most politicized story now.

first things first. This attack should be condemned by all and sundry. Not only because it is an attack on a holy shrine, but because it is done with the malice of creating ripples within the secular fabric of India.

The attack smacks of political conspiracy and I would not be surprised if this points fingers to those who are losing their grip on their votebanks. The polity of India needs to take this in the stride and not give a knee jerk reaction. We are a non violent country and we need to stay that way.

As usual we have blamed the neighboring country (or some of their outfit for this) - How convenient for us. Always blame the Foreign hand, never take the blame on ourselves.

One more interesting fact is that whenever there is such a highly politicized attack, our forces end up killing everyone of the culprits. Remember Akshardham? Same case here. All the culprits have been shot. We did arrest the driver, but then why could we not arrest the others. Do we lack the skills in that or the will for that?

Why do we always have this policy of "Never take any prisoners?".

This makes me wonder, is there something fishy?

Friday, July 01, 2005

Rs. 21,608 crores as Bribe each year?

The Bribe report is out. It says that Indians on a average pay Rs. 21608 cores as Bribe each year. Another report says that the Average per capita income of an Indian is somewhere in the range of Rs. 12000. Both the news pieces together make an interesting read.

Now we are talking of an income of Rs. 21608 cores which is unaccounted for. So assuming a population of 1 Billion we are talking of around Rs.2000 per capita not being accounted for!!

Mind you, the bribe money is mostly in the Public Sector and those are some of the most poorly paid jobs as well. Do you see a connection here?

But the question that begs attention is that, if we do pay more in the public sector, will it reduce corruption. Is corruption a function of less pays, more power or just human nature?