Sunday, October 28, 2007

China's Great Science Leap as India Slackens

Hi friends,

The above was one of the news items on page 1 of The Telegraph of 28th October. The article gave a comparison of the research papers submitted by scholars in China and India between 1980 to 2005. The results are quite revealing as given below.

Research Papers with Citation

1980 10,606 692
1990 11,563 6,991
2005 25,227 72,362

Indexed Research Papers 2005

Materials Science1,6347,091433%
Computer Simulation7966873863%
Applied Physics8023,823476%
Population1,129,677,528 1,325,082,38011%
Area (Sq Km)3,166,944 9,806,391309%

The population and area figures have been added by me.
After seeing the above figures, I don't think I have to say anything else, the figures speak for themselves.

After Mao Tse Tung in 1978, Mr Deng Xiaoping went about his business modernising China, and we have the results speaking on his behalf from 1980.
On the other hand, we have had a bunch of corrupt, incompetent, impotent and super-annuated leaders and politicians who have just thought of saving their chairs by hook or by crook.
Vote bank politics instead of efficiency has become the order of the day.
China now just has 11% more population than India and that difference too will be wiped out in the next 15 years and we will have the devious distinction of leading the world in population. Our Government is now thinking of giving incentives even to those couples having more than two children which were earlier given only upto the second child. Lalu Yadav may have a hand in this change of rule.
With just 11% more population, China has 309% more area. Hence, they can afford to have vacant land for the various SEZ areas.
Can we afford to release fertile area for SEZ? How will we feed our population?
With just 11 % more population see the difference in research, 433%,863% and 476% in Material Science, Computer Science and Applied Physics.

But what can you expect of India?
When you replace a competent, honest, popular research scholar who was our President by a woman who has corruption charges against her even before she joins office.

Whatever progress has been made by India is inspite of our politicians and not because of them. It is sheer hard work and grit of the people of India who have overcome all the hurdles put up by these politicians. That, and the legacy of English language, left behind by our erstwhile rulers which has given us an advantage in the IT and BPO industries. Our politicians tried to fritter away even this advantage by removing English from the School Curricula, as we witnessed in Bengal. Fortunately, there were private schools who thought otherwise.

Long Live India!



I'll tell you an actual happening which has a bearing on the topic of today.
This was related to me by my father-in-law about 30 years ago.
He used to work in a steel mill by the name of NISCO, loacated in Belur, near Kolkata.

The factory had once gone under lockout. Nothing new for an Industry in Bengal. It would have been news if it had not gone under lockout.

The owner of the factory, I won't give names, called my father-in-law and two other officers.
Some payment had to be made to the workers and he wanted the payment to be made through them.
He asked point blank "which of you three is not a thief"
The others kept quiet but my faher-in-law said "Everybody in this world is a thief.We just wait for our opportunity.A bearer, if told to buy snacks worth Rs 10/- will buy snacks for Rs 9.50 and use 50 paisa to buy some biris".
"A manager will probably rob the owner of a few thousand rupees but you owners rob the government of crores of rupees. It is just who is given what opportunity"
The owner gave the job of distribution to my father-in-law, requesting him to keep the limit "bread and salt"(Atta/Namak).
I remember another great person expressing similar sentiments while talking of corruption and bribes.(I wish I could remember his name)
He said, "Everybody has his price. If somebody offered me $100.00 to do wrong, I would scorn him. If he offered me $10000.00, I would refuse him. If he offered me $1.0 million I would nod my in non acceptance. But if he offered me $10.00 million, I would have to think over it."
He further said, " I just pray to God that nobody offers me my limit."
My pictures today is of the innocuous match box.
I bought a pack of ten match boxes of AIM brand a product manufactured by WIMCO, a reputed company.
Unfortunately, the first box I opened had about 18 defective matches
That got me thinking and I opened all the balance 9 match boxes and the result is for all to see.The other boxes had 4,10,6,4,8,4,4,6,4, i.e an average of 6.8 matches.
This works out to 13.6% in a box of 50 matches.
Quite a saving, if I may be allowed to say so.
As my father-in-law said, the match box owners are robbing in the matches sold to the public. Of course, this is besides what they may be robbing the governement of Excise duty, sales and other taxes.
Of course AIM is not the only brand which robs. Earlier we used to buy "SHIP" brand. These too had similar defects and so we switched over to AIM with no improvement.

Sorry, nothing to cheer in this.
It makes me sad.


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Durga Puja - Some more pictures

These pictures were taken on Navami (20.10.2007) by my son. All the pujas were from the Salt Lake area in Kolkata.

I couldn't take any more pictures as I was busy after the death of my cousin, as reported last week.

I know you will like the pictures, especially the ones designed on the Castle in Harry Porter's film which created a legal dispute in Delhi court.

Thankfully, after the initial hiccup on Shasthi because of unwanted showers, the rest of the Pujas passed wonderfully.

I wish all our old boys a very Happy Bijoya.

Cheers for Goethals!!

Nine for days!!


The pictures above, below and to the right are of the Puja pandal based on Harry Porter's Castle. Children really loved this pandal.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Durga Puja - Victory of Good Over Evil

Today has been a great day for the people of Bengal.
We have started celebrating Durga Puja.
I went around the pandals around my area so that I could recreate the puja atmosphere for all those boys of Bengal who live far from home and yearn to be with their families at this time of the year.
This is my small contribution.
This is a great day for one more reason.
The High Court has directed that the Rizwan case be handed over to the CBI for investigation.
This is a direct slap on the face of the W Bengal government who had all along been trying to muddle the issues so that the guilty policemen and criminals involved directly and indirectly in the murder of Rizwan would go unpunished.
We, the people of India, are thankful to God that we have a comparative honest judiciary to protect us from these wolves who call themselves politicians.
Time and again, whether it be in Bengal, Bihar, UP, Delhi or Tamil Nadu,(I won't mention the cases), it has always been the judiciary which has brought the involved politicians, policeman and criminals to book.
As a matter of fact all the above three names have become synonymous with crime.
Cheers for the Judiciary


Above two pictures entrance gate lighting at Barat, Lake Town Puja Pandal

Right and above are gate and Murti of Greenpark, opp lake town, puja pandal

Left is Puja Murti of Vivekananda Club, beside the Greenpark Puja

Above and left are the external front and rear view of Lake town puja Pandal. Because of long queue of viewers, I skipped going inside the pandal

Left and above are the front and inside views of the canal street puja pandal near Lake Town

Left and above are the inside views of the Murtis of the famous Sreebhumi Puja pandal and below is the outside front view. It has been constructed with ply and copper stips and the whole set up shines as if it is copper.

On the left is the Puja Pandal of Brahmakumaris. The gods are all live persons who are members of Brahmakumari. They take their poises after 5.30 pm and remain stationary for about half and hour at a time. Then they take about 10 minutes rest and then again take their poises. This continues upto 9.30 PM

On the left and above are the Murtis of Bangur Avenue C-Block

On the left is the front view and above is the inside view of the Murtis of the Bangur Avenue A-Block Pujas

Below is the front view and on the left and above are the inside view of the murtis of bangur Avenue residence Association. It is made of bamboo strips

On the left is the front view and above is the inside view of the Puja pandal of Bangur Avenue, B-Block

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Leeches, Vampires and other Bloodsuckers - The Medical Profession

Yesterday, I was busy the whole day as I had been to the crematorium. One of my cousins died at the comparatively young age of 57.
Now you may all be wondering what my visit has to do with the title of my blog today.
I'll explain.
About six days ago, my cousin was admitted to the hospital.
While admitting him into the hospital, the doctor had recommended that he be admitted in the special cabins. Since that is quite expensive the person who accompanied my cousin explained that he would like him to be admitted in the ward.
The doctor then rebuked him, saying, "why are you depriving me of my fees. Everytime I visit the hospital and go on my rounds to the cabins, I can charge him and all my other cabin patients my fees".
Another doctor I know had advised a relative of mine to undergo all the gamut of tests including Tread mill test when he just had some slight pain in his chest for gas.
Inspite of the treadmill test giving a negative result the doctor advised him for a angiograph.
That is when my relative put his foot down and refused to have the angiograph done.
A Mumbai doctor told my relative when he visited hime later on, that the pain was due to gas formation.
This got me thinking whether only leeches and vampires suck the human blood.
Aren't there other so called educated people who suck the blood of their fellow human beings?
The doctors have become, especially in North India, one of the most corrupt and selfish bunch of professionals. Among their sins of omission and commissions are:-
A) Prescribing unwanted tests so that their commissions(about 40%) from the laboratories increase
B) Prescribing unnecessary drugs or more expensive drugs because the drug companies have given them presents and other incentives.
C) Conducting unnecessary operations where nothing is wrong with the organ or where medicines could cure the malady.
D) Conducing tests to determine the sex of an unborn child to abort the unwanted female child. Of course, this has now been made a punishable offense but yet we read of this crime everyday in the papers.
E) Removing or changing the newly born child in nursing homes to sell to childless couples.
F) Instead of curing their patients, the doctor prolongs his agony by giving him wrong drugs or placebo so that he visits the doctor regularly and pays his fees.
The list could go on and on.
Of course, when the health minister of the country, himself got admitted in a medical institute, not by competition but by donation,plays politics in one of the premier medical institutions in the country, what can we expect the government to do?
The government is too busy, saving itself being toppled, to rein in errant politicians and gives them free hands to do what they want.
I am sure many of you must have been at the receiving end of the corrupt practise of the medical profession.
I would request you to put them in the blog.
It is like a breath of fresh air to note that the doctors of South India are compartively more service oriented and God fearing than their northern counterparts.
My hats off to the doctors of Vellore, NIMHANS Bangalore, Sai Baba's hospital near Bangalore and other good doctors and institutions in south India.
I know, some of our old boys may also have become doctors. I am sure our school's moral science classes would not have made them into blood suckers.
Next week, I shall tell you of the other blood sucking professions of our society.
Till then,

Cheers for Goethals


Thursday, October 11, 2007

Birds of Feather

Have you Kolkata friends seen the headlines in The Times of India of 11th October.
There were two headlines, coincidentally side by side. Or did the times of India put them so intentionally..
One read " Sergent turns snatcher at night" and the other read
"Retd top cop, wife tortured & robbed"
The first is about two cops who beat up and snatched Rs 20,000/- from a person who had taken the money as loan to treat his father who was in hospital.
The second is about a retired deputy commissioner of Kolkata police and his wife. They were slashed with choppers, their hands and feet tied and eight almirahs and two wall cupboards broken.
The world has gone through the whole cycle now. Cops have turned robbers and robbers have started beating up the cops.
This is the frankenstein our politicians have created in Bengal by unionizing the policemen.
Now, the policeman, instead of doing their jobs they curry favour with the politicians.
What does a policeman have to do with cricket, except see matches. But our chief minister has made him an
important office bearer in the CAB. So what does he do?
Instead of preventing crime, he encourages crime.
Is it of any surprise that people have started taking the law into their hands and lynching criminals when they catch them?
The people would have started lynching the politicians too like they are lynching the PDS agents in the rural areas, if they had not protected themselves with a wall of security forces.
What a change?
Pandit nehru used to travel in an open car and would get down every now and then to shake hands with the people.
Now, the so called "peoples representatives" are protecting themselves from the people

Cheers for Goethals


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Madhyamgram Re-visited after 15 years

We were in Goethals together, he from '56 and I from '55.

He entered our peaceful sleep with a bang.

Most of us students used to get on the Broad Gauge Darjeeling Mail from Sealdah.This used to take us up to the Sagrakali Ghat. Lunch was at a station called Rampurhat. The Farakka barrage was at the planning stage.

We used to cross the river Ganges by a steamer to the Manihari Ghat. Hot dinner was served on the steamer.

At the Manihari Ghat, we used to get on the Metre gauge train which took us to Siliguri by 6 o'clock in the next morning.

This was the junction station where we used to changeover to the narrow Gauge which took us to the school siding at Kurseong. New Jalpaiguri station was not born then. I have just come to know that ours is the only school in India which has its own siding.

As I was saying, he entered our life with a bang. How?

Well, the metre gauge train used to stop at around midnight at a station called Katihar. It is still there, although made quite infamous by Bihar politicians.

Suddenly there was a banging on the train door. BANG! BANG! BANG! We used to get up rubbing our eyes.

This little boy used to come up all smiling, little realizing the confusion he had created.

He is Jayanta Ghosh.

For the last month or so, my brain had been rankling as one of my friends from my group was not making it to the centenary celebrations,

An e-mail from Basant Lama, asking his whereabouts, made me think still harder.

Finlly, I decided to visit his home in Madhyamgram, which is about 30 Km from Kolkata, proper.

I had first visited the place in 1964 with S P Chatterjee and A K Roy.

It was more a village then.

We had gone from Shyambazar via BT Road, Dum Dum Road and Jessore Road.. The VIP road had not even been conceptualized then. It took us about an hour.

The second time I visited Madhyamgram was about 15 years ago.

I had started working at Worthington Pump and my work took me quite often to Madhyamgram.

JK was then posted outside W Bengal. Lucky chap.

I met his parents, his father had retired and his younger brother was in the Air Force.

His father gave me a ripe coconut from their own tree. I couldn't refuse it since they gave

it so lovingly.I carried it all the way to Kolkata. But it was worth it. Very sweet, the coconut.

Well. after that day, I visited Madhyamgram yesterday, 8th Oct.

His house was locked. I understood from his neighbours that JK's cousin lives there and JK lives in Delhi.

I gave my card and contact details to a "para" boy and requested him to ask his cousin to call me.

The journey bore fruit.

His cousin Mithu, called up today and gave me JK's and his son's telephone nos.

I called up JK's number immediately."This telephone is switched off, please try again after some time" the normal refrain from mobiles. I tried again and again. and then finally called up his son's number at 11.00 PM.

His son wanted to know who I was. I didn't reveal me ID. I wanted him to guess from my voice.

He couldn't, although he rankled his brains. Finally I revealed myself after 3 minutes of guessing.

Boy, was he happy to hear from me.

What surprised me was that he was completely unaware of the centenary celebrations, although he lives in the Capital of India.

It just shows the little we have been able to do to make our boys aware of our celebrations.

I am also at fault here as I also did not participate in the initial awareness meetings.

We missed an opportunity to put Ads in all major papers in the metros.

My brain still rankles for a few more names. P K Gupta, Biswajeet Ghoshal, Vardachari Janardanan, N. Venkataraman, Clifton D'Aubney, Roger Brady, Sheane Brady. I wonder where and how they are?

Bye for now. Hope to come with another report soon


Monday, October 8, 2007

Stop SMS ing

Dear friends,

I was a regular viewer of "Indian Idols" when it was first launched by Sony TV about three years ago. I admit I had also voted naively for two or three candidates who I felt was really good. They went into the next round.
However there was one candidate who I, my family and the judges felt was really bad.
But imagine our surprise when that particular candidate went into the next round.
It was then I understood the meaning of the words of the comperes of the show when he/she exorted us to "cast as many votes as possible for our favourite candidates"
The best candidate does not win. This would have been the case if each mobile would be allowed to cast one vote only. The candidate who gets the maximum votes wins. This is by multiple voting. This is another form of booth capturing and stamping votes, an art so perfected by our politicians.
The politicians have divided us on the basis of caste and religion. Now the media is dividing us on the basis of states so that we fight against each other.The Siliguri rioting was an eye opener.
The only persons who benefit from this are the telecom companies and the sponsors who get a cut from the companies.
Do you think it is Sony TV who is paying the winner,the 1 crore and one year contract. No it is your SMS.
Do you think the it is STAR TV who is giving away the 1 crore when AB or SRK hands over the cheque with a flourish.
No. It is your SMS.
Nowadays, you look up any paper. They have all jumped onto the bandwagon They are all trying to milch this cash cow by asking your opinon, as if it counts.
For any topic nowadays newspapers want your opinion by SMS so that they can get a cut.Your opinions are meaningless. The other day I noticed a result of one such opinon poll of a major newspaper having a circulation of over 10 lakhs. The polled votes was only 375 and these constituted 80 % of the votes.
It should be made mandatory for all such opinon polls to give the actual number of votes polled with the percentage.
If they actually wanted my opinion, they should make the SMS free.
I write to you all forward this opinion of mine to as many people as possible, if you agree.
Stop wasting money on these useless SMS's.
The telecom companies are already rich.
Don't make them richer with your hard earned money.
If there are any of our boys working in telecom companies, I aplogise, but I am firm in my opinion.
Cheers for Goethals!

Radheshyam Sharma

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Down memory Lane

One old friend, now living abroad, has asked if I could arrange some old photographs so that his memory is jogged.
I could get two class photographs of 1964 and 1965, courtsey S P Chatterjee of 1965 batch.
If anybody can remember the complete names of all the actors in the two photographs, he would be declared a "Memory Ratna".
I confess, I do not remember all the names
Radheshyam Sharma

PS. If anybody is having old photographs, he is welcome to post them on the blog.