Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Three Person's caught travelling on an MP's Railway pass

Three detained for travelling on railway pass of BJP MP from Bihar

Patna, (BiharTimes): Three persons, travelling on the railway pass entitled to the Bharatiya Janata Party Lok Sabha Member from Purnea, Uday Kumar Singh, in Guwahati-New Delhi Rajdhani Express were detained by RPF’s anti-fraud squad in Katihar on Tuesday evening.

According to railway sources a travelling ticket examiner found Pankaj Singh, Sanjiv Kumar and another unknown person travelling in the AC-II tier of the train on Singh’s IC “illegally”. The BJP MP was not travelling in the train.

Uday is the brother of former bureaucrat and now Janata Dal (United) Rajya Sabha MP, N K Singh.

This matter should not be taken lightly.
Our people's representatives get all sorts of benefits which is for their own use only.
If they try to pass on the benefit to others, that facility should be withdrawn from the person concerned.
The Free Railway pass given to Uday singh should be withdrawn immediately after holding ann enquiry as to how the three person's got the pass.
In the last parliament, we had seen how one M P had been caught trying to take abroad a woman as his spouse who actually was not his wife.
This type of misuse will continue unless we take stringent action against the culprits.

Sonia Asks Govt. to Drop Cases against Quattrocchi

Moily defends Govt decision to drop case against Quattrocchi

Union Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily has backed the Centre’s decision to drop the case against Ottavio Quattrocchi admitting that there was nothing left to do in the case.

Ottavio Quattrocchi, an Italian businessman, is the main accused in the Bofors gun purchase scam.

Moily pleaded helplessness in the investigation and defended the Central Bureau of Investigation’s (CBI) positive role

Speaking to a private news channel Moily said: "This case is going on since long. If he could be brought back and any conviction could be held then the case could be pursued with a positive result. But ultimately nothing positive was found.”

“In Feb 2004 itself the Delhi High Court said it is a waste of time. Thereafter the case was handed over to the CBI, and they have been playing a positive role for 22 years now. We must have spent more money in the case than the Bofors gun itself,” Moily added.

On Tuesday, the CBI decided to withdraw all cases registered against Quattrocchi in the Bofors gun purchase scam.

“We want to close the matter against Bofors accused Ottavio Quattrocchi,” said the CBI.

Earlier, the Centre had informed the Supreme Court that they want to withdraw all cases against Quattrocchi.

Solicitor General Gopal Subramanium told the court that the CBI has failed to extradite Quattrocchi and that the Delhi High Court has held that there is no case under the Prevention of Corruption Act in the Bofors matter.

The Supreme Court will hear the matter

For your information, I am giving the chronological cover perpetrated by the government of the Bofor's payment

Apr 16, 1987: Alleged payoffs in the Bofors deal surfaces in a broadcast of Swedish Radio.

Jan 22, 1990: FIR in the Bofors case registered by CBI.

1997: Swiss banks release some 500 documents after years of legal wrangling. CBI files a case against Ottavio Quattrocchi, arms dealer Win Chadha, also naming Rajiv Gandhi, defence secretary S K Bhatnagar and number of others.

Oct 22, 1999: CBI files first chargesheet in the case naming Chadha, Quattorocchi, Bhatnagar, former Bofors Chief Martin Ardbo and Bofors Company.

Oct 9, 2000: CBI files supplementary chargesheet naming Hinduja brothers -- Srichand, Gopichand and Prakashchand as accused.

2003: Two British Bank accounts of alleged middleman Ottavio Quattrocchi is frozen by a high court order on request of the government.

Feb 4, 2004: Delhi High Court gives clean chit to Rajiv Gandhi. Quashes charges under Prevention of Corruption Act.

May 31, 2005: Delhi High court quashes charges against British businessmen, Hinduja brothers -- Shrichand, Gopichand and Prakash.

Dec, 2005: B Datta, the then Additional Solicitor General requests the British Government that two British bank accounts of Quattrocchi be de-frozen on the grounds of insufficient evidence to link these accounts to the Bofors payoff.

Jan 16, 2006: Supreme Court directs the Indian government to ensure that Quattrocchi does not withdraw money from the two bank accounts in London.

Jan 16, 2006: CBI claims in an affidavit filed before the Supreme court that they were still pursuing extradition orders for Quattrocchi.

Jan 23, 2006: CBI admits that around Rs 21 crore, about USD 4.6 million, in the two accounts have already been withdrawn.

Feb 6, 2007: Quattrocchi detained in Argentina but the news of his detention released by CBI only on February 9.

Feb 7, 2007: Interpol informs CBI about Quattrocchi's detention.

Feb 13, 2007: CBI, responding to the Supreme Court on a matter relating to money withdrawn by Quattrocchi, does not mention the fact of his detention. CBI admits later that it had the information at that time.

Feb 23, 2007: CBI releases a statement about Quattrocchi's arrest in Argentina.

Feb 26, 2007: Quattrocchi released on bail.

Mar 2, 2007: CBI sends a two-member team – Director Prosecution S K Sharma and Superintendent of Police Keshav Mishra -- to assist in fighting the extradition case.

Mar 7, 2007: The CBI submits 250-page plea for extradition of Quattrocchi to the Argentinian Foreign Office.

Mar 23, 2007: The hearing of the plea for Quattrocchi's extradition to India began in the Argentinian court.

Jun 4, 2007: The two-member team goes again to give final touches ahead of the extradition trial of Quattrocchi.

Jun 7, 2007: Extradition trial begins in El Dorado

Jun 8, 2007: The court in El Dorado rejects India's extradition request of Quattrocchi.

October, 2008: Attorney General Milon Banerjee opines that CBI can withdraw Red Corner Notice against Quattrocchi.

Nov 25, 2008: Red Corner Notice against Quattrocchi withdrawn.

Apr 30, 2009: CBI seeks time from trial court to decide future course of action against Quattrocchi.

Sep 8, 2009: CBI seeks two weeks time from trial court for exploring options against Quattrocchi after withdrawal of Red Corner Notice.

Sep 29, 2009: Centre tells Supreme Court about its decision to withdraw case against Quattrocchi.

The government is trying to draw the curtains on a black chapter in its history.
An otherwise honest man, Rajiv Gandhi, brought infamy on his name by trying to oblige his wife's countryman, Quattorocchi.
If Rajiv Gandhi had been the corrupt Young Turk, Chandrashekhar, he would have said that everybody pays money for these deals and would have collected all the money in sacks and built a 100 point dispensing petrol pump in his home town.
However, being new to the game, he said no money had been paid, and, that was his undoing.
Bribery was paid, money was transferred but the government could not locate or get sufficient evidence against either Win Chadda or Quattorocchi to get them convicted since they did not want to find it.
They used all the means at their disposal to stop the investigations at each and every stage, be it in Sweden, or Switzerland or in India.
The congress, whenever it was in the government did shadow boxing in trying to give an impression that it was taking action when all the time it was doing otherwise.
This will go down in the history of the congress as a black day.
Even two hundred years from now, people will still recollect through history books how the congress jettisoned all efforts to bring the culprits to book.
Don't people still remember Jallianwallah Bagh massacre and Indira's Emergency.
Similarly, Rajiv Gandhi will be remembered for two things.
1) For having brought Sam Pitroda and ushering in the modern Telecom Era and
2) The corruption related to the Bofor's Gun and Sonia Gandhi's association with her countrymen to loot India.

Only recently, Prime Minister,Manmohan Singh, President,Pratibha Patel and Chief Justice of Supreme Court K G Balakrishnan had asked for action against corruption.
This is the first piece of action from their government.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Prepayment Penalty charged by banks

Stop prepayment charges - RBI to banks
Monday,28 September 2009, 16:24 hrs

Bangalore: The Reserve Bank of India has shown its disapproval on the prepayment charges levied by the banks and has instructed the banks to stop such practices. These charges hinder a customer to pay off his loan and move to another with better terms.

As per a customer most of the people who avail loans fear paying this extra two percent bank service charge. Even SBI has started levying this charge, reports Rupee Times. The inconvenience faced by the customers came to the RBI's notice while responding to a query on the levied charges under the Right to Information Act. The bank has also notified that it has received many such complaints earlier.

By levying such penalty charges, banks want to retain their customers who want to avail a loan with better terms and conditions. "By doing so, banks are limiting their customers' options. Instead they should try to retain them by offering them competitive rates. Doing away with the prepayment charges will help in attracting more customers for the banks," RBI said.

Earlier the banks were questioned on the same prepayment charges issue by groups like National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission have already questioned banks on this issue, yet the banks have failed to come up with a proposal with standard rates.

I am happy that the RBI has pulled up the banks for the prepayment charges.
About 6 months ago, when my son had wanted to prepay his loan, the ICICI Bank charged him about Rs 3500/- as prepayment charges.
In this matter, I feel that ICICI Bank is the worst culprit.
When they issue the loans, their agents say one thing and then later on they do something else.
There is no justification for charging the prepayment charges as they are getting their money back ahead of schedule and yet they merrily went on penalising their customers.
The RBI should instruct the banks to refund all the prepayment charges they have collected from their customers in the last three years.

Pangs of Hunger

Last night at around 3.00 am my grand-daughter started crying inconsolably.
Initially we waited for my son and daughter-in-law to calm her down. When they failed, my wife and I then joined them in trying to soothe her.
We thought she may be having a stomach ache and gave her medicines for that.
She continued crying.
She was having stuffy nose and thought that she may be crying because of difficulty in breathing. We warmed some mustard oil and put a few drops in her nostrils.
She continued crying.
It was 3.45 am then.
We started feeling hungry.
It struck us that maybe she too may be hungry.
We warmed some milk and then fed her through the bottle.
It was only then that she quietened down and went to sleep.
We realized that she was hungry all along and could not say what she wanted and so cried.
This got me thinking.
If hunger can so disturb a child who has been fed just 3 hours ago, how must it be disturbing the millions of people who go without meals for the whole day or if they are able to eat in the morning they cannot eat in the evening. They go to bed with just a glass of water to fill the stomach. The water goes out of the stomach in half an hour and they are hungry again. The whole night they must be tossing about as they cannot sleep for the hunger and the children who cannot say anything just cry.
All our political promise ROTI, KAPADA and MAKAN during the elections.
It so sad, that even 60 years after independence we cannot give all our people even two square meals.
On the other hand we can continue feeding the fat pigs who go under the name of government employees. They get a fat salary with DA and perks. Then they earn money through corrupt practices and then every 5 years we reward them by giving up to 50 % increase in salaries by way of Pay Commission Awards.
How can we have any funds left for the poor when these 15 % government employees consume 60 % of the resources raised by the government?
Unless corruption and Pay Commission Awards are abolished we will always have poor people sleeping on hungry stomach.
We will always have Maoist, fighting the system

The Art of Kissing

Having killed all the demons,I think there can be no better way of starting the week after the Pujas.
Sent by Atul.
Happy Dussera and Vijoya

Everybody seems to know how to kiss. The question is: Are you aware of a variety of interesting facts and details about a kiss? Is kissing good or bad for you? How do they do it in Japan , France and other countries? Can you slim down by kissing too much? Below are some of the most curious things about kissing.

1. An act of kissing puts 29 facial muscles in motion. In other words, kissing can be used as an effective exercise to prevent the development of wrinkles.

2. Lovers swap saliva containing various substances e.g. fats, mineral salts, proteins while kissing. According to latest studies, the exchange of the above substances can give a boost to the production of antibodies which are made specifically to deal with the antigens associated with different diseases as they are encountered.

3. As a rule, 66 percent of people keep their eyes closed while kissing. The rest take pleasure in watching the emotions run the gamut on the faces of their partners.

4. According to U.S. statistics, an American woman would kiss an average of 80 men before she gets married.

5. A quick romantic kiss will burn about 2-3 calories, whereas

(an openmouthed kiss with tongue contact) will obliterate more than 5 calories.

6. Sensitivity of the lips is 200 times higher than that of the fingers.

7. It is thought that men who kiss their wives goodbye before going to work live five years longer than those who just slam the door. Men of the latter category are said to be more prone to traffic accidents.

8. Smooching passionately for 90 seconds will elevate blood pressure and cause the pulse rate to go racing. It will also increase the level of hormones in the blood, thus reducing life by one minute.

9. French kiss is called a “juncture of souls” in France . Not only the lips do the job, the tongues come into play too. The passionate French invented another variety of the soul kiss in which only the tongues are employed.

10. Contrary to a popular belief, the Eskimos do not merely rub their noses against each other in a display of love and affection. The lips open up a bit once the olfactory organs of the kissing partners meet. Then the Eskimos take a deep breath and send the air out while holding their lips closed. After savoring the scent of each other, the partners press noses against each other’s cheeks and freeze for a minute of two.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Sanctions for Non-existent wells

3 suspended for siphoning of govt money
TNN 27 September 2009, 05:54am IST

DALTONGANJ: All is not well with the wells in Palamu where all stress is laid to creating more and more waterbodies to preserve water as long dry spells continue to plague this district frequently.

Three wells, at an estimated cost of Rs 89,000 each, were sanctioned under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act for a village under Lumba Satbahini panchayat of Pandu block in 2006. The wells were supposed to come up on the fields of three Dalits, namely Antu, Shiv and Krishna.

Strangely enough the wells were never sunk and the three had no knowledge of any well coming up on their fields either. To add to their woes, government money was shown to be paid to them when the trio had not even received a single pie.

Sources said the wells which were not dug up at all. A false measurement of digging wells was shown only in government books by a junior engineer.

Accordingly, payment to the tune of Rs 89,000 each was made to Antu, Shiv and Krishna by three government functionaries. Two of them were rajaswaya karamchari and the other a panchayat sewak.

Sources said it turned out that right from the then BDO down to the junior engineer to the panchayat sewak were all involved in the siphoning of government money.

Confirming this, Palamu deputy commissioner Amitabh Kaushal said a probe was conducted by district transport officer D B Singh, who indicted the officers for both embezzling government money and cheating the three Dalits.

He added that the two rajaswaya karamcharis, Suresh Ram and Rajeshwar Singh, and the panchayat sewak, Vishwanath Singh, have been put under suspension and departmental proceedings initiated against all three.

Regarding the then BDO Ram Parvesh Singh, the government has been asked to take stringent action against him. Sources said the embezzled amount of Rs 2,67,000 would be either realised from the salaries of the accused officials or else, they would face a protracted legal battle.

The above incident reminds me of a much earlier incident in Bihar.
A BDO had given a proposal for digging up a large piece of land to make a pond which would supply water to the village.
Rs 20.00 lakhs was sanctioned for the project and every year after that Rs 50000/- was allocated for upkeep of the pond.
When the BDO was transferred and a new BDO came, he found that there was no pond and yearly sanctions was also being defalcated.
He then drew up a fresh proposal for filling up the pond as it had become breeding ground for mosquitoes and was spreading cholera.
Rs 10.00 lakhs was sanctioned for filling up the non-existent pond.

It seems the embezzlement was discovered prematurely.
If they had waited long enough, another sanction would have been made for filling the wells.

Was the Police disguising as Journalists ethical?

Scribe garb no big deal: Left
Calcutta, Sept. 27: The CPM and its allies may have differences on how to tackle Maoists but they spoke in one voice defending the police officers’ disguise as journalists while arresting Chhatradhar Mahato.

Senior CPM leader Rabin Deb parried the question of the ethics of the officers who posed as journalists from Singapore and befriended local scribes to catch Mahato when the journalists were present. Instead, he blamed the journalists.

“The government is yet to come out on how Mahato was arrested and whether the police misled journalists or used them as a source. But a section of journalists has identified itself with the Maoists. How could they meet Maoist leaders and Mahato when the police had been hunting for them and had failed to catch them?” Deb asked.

The allies were more direct in defending the police.

“The end justifies the means. The police always try to zero in on culprits under disguise. What if the godmen and beggars now complain the police undermine their professional credibility and security by posing as one of them?” asked Kshiti Goswami, the RSP leader and PWD minister.

He blamed journalists for for taking security risks to outdo each other. “Journalists should be cautious about traps laid for them as they themselves are responsible for their security,” he said.

Forward Bloc veteran Asoke Ghosh said the police’s disguise was part of the job . “I don’t know whether the police had informed the chief minister about ensnaring Mahato using journalists. The police don’t care about ethics while gathering intelligence and have moles in every party, including the CPM,’’ he said.

“What if the Maoists now take some journalists hostage as they did with two policemen after Mahato’s arrest?”

In a letter to Union home minister P. Chidambaram and chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, the Press Club of Calcutta “condemned” the police’s disguise as journalists, saying it had :lowered the dignity of the profession”.

The CPM’s allies defended the arrest of Mahato. Goswami said the arrest was aimed to make the People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities “leaderless”.

But the partners hinted that they had reservations about the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) being slapped against him. It is the central act under which the CPI (Maoist) has been banned.

“The chief minister said the UAPA would be used after consulting allies. If Mahato has been charged as a Maoist, we will probe the matter,’’ Ghosh said.

The press and media is up in arms for the way the police disguised themselves as journalists and captured Chatrdhar Mahato.
They fear it will lead to a loss of their credibility.
This is no big deal.
Criminals and terrorists have been regulary disguising themselves as police personnel when they enter any village or house which they want to attack.
Yes, now it will become for difficult for the press / media to get an interviews from these people.
The Maoist made two fundamental mistakes.
1) The interview should have taken place at a place chosen by the Maoists.
2) Frisked all the people before allowing them to meet Chatradhar.

It seems Chatradhar had become very publicity hungry.
He has paid the price.

Next time they will not make this mistake, I am sure.

I repeat, unless the government takes steps to improve the lot of these poor people, the problem will always remain. For each Maoist that the government kills, ten more will be born.
The government has to stop pampering the fat pigs who are in its employment.
They are already fat and are fattened even more every five years with Pay Commission awards and THE GENERAL POPULATION BECOMES LEANER AND THINNER.

CVC Plants Red Herrings

Transparency International, the Berlin-based organisation, ranks India as one of the more corrupt countries in the world--a conclusion based on surveys of business people.

You wouldn't think that is the case, if you go by what the Central Vigilance Commission is doing. In its latest report, the CVC has put on its website a list of 123 government officials against whom it has advised either penalties or prosecution for corruption.

Just 123 officials are corrupt -- in a country that ranks among the more corrupt economies in the world?

One explanation is that this is the list for just July; if you add the list for previous months, the number becomes less laughable. Major penalties, for instance, have been imposed on 385 officers during the year and the CVC has advised that this be done to 778 officials.

But even so, the numbers don't square with the reality that everyone is familiar with.

Even more worrying, in some ways, is that the CVC doesn't seem to be zeroing in on anyone other than the strictly small fry.

Look at the list for the latest months and as much becomes obvious. One of those on the list is a clerk in the railways and the major penalty proposed is to hold back one increment of his for a year -- that is, he will continue to draw a salary that is a little lower than that of his colleagues for the rest of his working days.

In another case, the pension of a gent is to be cut by 10 per cent. Are we saying the vanguard of India's corrupt hordes comprises junior functionaries who have committed transgressions that require such small penalties?

Take telecom, a sector where thousands of crores (billions) of rupees have gone into private pockets because of arbitrary decisions taken by those in authority. So, who are the people against whom the CVC has moved in the telecom sector, as revealed in the latest report?

A linesman, a dealing assistant and the like. Whether you choose to honour these worthies, or prosecute them in the manner the CVC thinks fit, it does appear that the list has what is at best a passing familiarity with what goes on in the sector.

One assumes that the CVC is staffed with well-meaning individuals who are doing their best to curb corruption and bring corrupt officials to book.

Yet it is clear that the country cannot expect the CVC (headed by a Constitutionally protected chief) to play any meaningful role in addressing the corruption problem. Can the same be said about the different Lok Ayuktas that are being set up at the Centre and in the states?

Indeed, is there a concerted effort to address the issue in all its manifestations, rather than look for paper solutions? For instance, can meaningless regulations and licences be removed (the Administrative Reforms Commission has suggested some) to reduce the scope for corruption?

Can the transparency of government functioning be increased by using information technology and the Internet, as the environment minister has done by posting on his ministry's website the status of all projects awaiting environmental clearance (which is known to have been a source of a great deal of corruption)?

What about meaningful audit of the means by which members of Parliament have acquired the wealth that they report when they file their nominations as candidates?

For instance, does the wealth square with their known sources of income? What about a systemic solution for the Dinakaran kind of case, when it comes to judicial appointments?

Without such questions being asked and answered, it's futile for the CVC to focus on a farcical nabbing of the small fry.

From the above we can see the half hearted attempts being made by the government to wipe out corruption.
With a population of 1.2 billion and with about 15% i.e about 18 crore people working in Government, Semi Government, Quasi Government and PSUs, the CVC has just discovered 123 corrupt persons in the month of July.
Something like looking for a needle in the haystack when it should be the other waqy round. The needle would stand for the honest employee and the haystack was the corrupt government employee.
Further, why is the CVC only considering only governement employees?
Our not our MLAs and MPs and other local councillors, government employees?
Don't they get paid by the government?
Does the CVC mean to say that all politicians are honest or is the CVC scared to take any action on those animals

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Should the Army be Called?

Clamour to let army fight Maoists rises
- Bengal, only state with military experience, adds voice to chorus
New Delhi, Sept. 26: The CPM in Bengal has joined an increasing chorus from the states to deploy the military as the Centre shapes a shotgun strategy counter-Maoist offensive.

Ironically enough, Bengal was the first — and remains the only — state in which the army was deployed against Naxalites since the uprising in Naxalbari (1967) spawned thousands of Maoists who now claim influence over a quarter of the country.

Despite the clamour for the army, Union home minister P. Chidambaram said even yesterday during a tour of Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand: “There is no proposal to involve the army in anti-Naxal operations.”

But three days back in New Delhi, Chidambaram had said in two separate meetings, that if need be, the special forces of the army would be called upon to lend their muscle to the offensive he is now shaping.

The Indian Air Force is already involved in the operations and the army top brass is involved in strategising and training of forces.

The demand for the army, being voiced with increasing decibel levels from the states since 2006, cuts across party lines — whether it is the Congress, the Biju Janata Dal or the BJP and, now, the CPM. But the largest constituent of the Left in Bengal is unsure that it can carry the coalition it leads along with it.

Should the Eastern Command, headquartered in Calcutta’s Fort William, be asked to organise a deployment, this will be the second time since 1971. A full corps of the army was deployed in the western districts of Bengal and the eastern and southern districts of Bihar — one of the strongest areas of the Maoists then as it is today — that year under Operation Steeplechase.

That history has been all but forgotten as state administrations look to militarise their drive against the Maoists.

The demand for the army is accompanied by increasing measures to militarise the police force. The scare scenario for the army is that despite their “militarisation” — by means of better equipment and larger numbers — the state and central security forces run the risk of getting stranded.

“A militarised police is necessary but if the military is asked to police, it’s dangerous,” a senior army officer said.

“In that event, the military will be called upon to police the interiors of India, something we do not want,” he said. “In Jammu and Kashmir and in the Northeast, it is important for the army to be deployed because they are border regions,” he explained.

Orissa chief minister Naveen Patnaik met defence minister A.K. Antony yesterday and sought the military’s involvement in the offensive to take on Maoists in the western and southern districts of his state.

Patnaik was also keen that the army recruit soldiers from his state in larger numbers.

The chief minister is also understood to have requested the defence establishment to formulate special norms suited for the physical characteristics of tribals and others in Orissa so that they stand a better chance of getting recruited.

The Opposition Congress in Orissa has already called upon the Centre to deploy the army in Orissa.

In Chhattisgarh, the BJP government is making space in the outskirts of Raipur for a military cantonment. Chief minister Raman Singh has assured the army chief, General Deepak Kapoor, that land for a sub area command has been marked out. Though Raman Singh does not favour a deployment of the army just yet, his government-backed Counter Terrorism and Jungle Warfare College in Kanker is supported by the army.

It is run by a former army officer, Brigadier (retired) Basant Kumar Ponwar, who was the commandant of the army’s specialised Counter Insurgency and Jungle Warfare School (CIJWS) in Vairangte, Mizoram, when he was in the service.

The army has seconded two Colonels to the faculty of the college that is the only one in the country dedicated to training state and central forces in counter-Maoist tactics. A helipad within the college campus is also used to launch air force helicopters for reconnaissance, casualty evacuation and the movement of troops.

In Operation Steeplechase — similar in many ways to the current security drive in and around Lalgarh — a corps of the army (about 45,000 troops) were deployed from July 1 to August 15 1971, in Midnapore, Purulia, Burdwan and Birbhum districts of Bengal, in Singhbhum, Dhanbad, Santhal Parganas districts of Bihar (now Jharkhand) and in Mayurbhanj district of Orissa.

The army was the outer ring of a cordon spread across the districts on the borders of the three states while central and state forces carried out searches and sweeps through much of the villages in the forested tracts. The army was withdrawn as India began preparing for the war with Pakistan in December 1971 that led to the creation of Bangladesh.

All political parties have made our police force useless by using extraneous factors for employment and promotion.
When you start using caste and religion and not merit to build your police force you cannot get the best out of them.
Further, they have been politicised to such an extent that their masters cannot get any work out of them nor can they take action on them.
When the police and politicans do not perform their task honestly for the benefit of the country, the army has to be called out.
We had to use it on 26/11 in Mumbai.
The army is supposed protect the country from the external enemies but when the internal enemies raise their heads they should be quashed.
The Maoist have raised their heads because the politicians did not look after the poor. They exploited them just for their votes and then forgot them.
The army should not help out here.
If politicans and policemen are killed , so be it. They have brought it on themselves for their inept handling of their jobs.
If they cannot handle it, let them resign and let their be President's Rule.
They can ask for funds to modernize their police forces and give them proper training to fight the Maoists. But first they have to remove the causes which gave birth to the Maoists otherwise they will be unsuccessful. One Maoist killed will give birth to ten Maoist. The Maoist have nothing to lose, they have already lost everything.

Rating Agencies - How Good?

Rating mandatory for CBSE schools

New Delhi, Sept. 26: Parents will soon be able to choose a CBSE school for their children by consulting an official ratings system rather than having to depend on reputation and perceptions.

All Central Board of Secondary Education schools will for the first time need to undergo formal accreditation by a set of licensed agencies, and must repeat the process after every few years.

A CBSE draft note suggests amendments to the board’s affiliation and examination by-laws, laying down that every school must get itself accredited, and that this must be done within a time limit. The note suggests “a span of three to five years”.

The periodic accreditation will allow the CBSE to maintain a database of quality standards at affiliated institutions in the country. Nearly 10,500 schools — public, private and aided — in India and abroad are affiliated to the board.

Schools will, however, not have to compulsorily disclose their rating, the proposal states. Instead, interested students can seek details on the rating of a school from the rating agency.

“We believe that no affiliated school should have a problem getting rated by a registered agency. Students have a right to know the quality of the school they go to,” a senior CBSE official told The Telegraph.

At present, the CBSE formally examines the quality of a school only at the time it seeks affiliation to the board or wants to expand — from a secondary school to a higher secondary school, for instance.

Education minister Kapil Sibal had proposed a school accreditation mechanism while announcing his 100-day agenda at the start of his term. Earlier this month, at the completion of the first 100 days of the UPA’s second tenure, Sibal had indicated his ministry was working on that proposal. He had then said accreditation would be optional for schools.

But the CBSE, in its draft note circulated to all affiliated schools, has specified that “all affiliated schools would be required to get themselves accredited within a reasonable period of time”. The note provides details of the school accreditation regime that the CBSE and Sibal’s human resource development ministry are proposing.

Under the proposal, the CBSE will set up an expert advisory committee to regulate private accrediting agencies. Private rating agencies can apply to the committee which, after scrutinising applications, will issue licences. Only licensed agencies can accredit schools.

The board will not itself accredit the schools but will act as an appellate body if the rating agencies are unhappy with the expert advisory committee’s decisions.

If our previous experience with Rating Agencies is to be used as yardstick, this new idea of CBSE will be an additional means of extending the tentacles of corruption.
As we all know India comes in the list of most corrupt countries in the world.

We have seen how the rating agencies in the financial markets failed in USA. Fitch Ratings, Moody's and Standard and Poor's are the three rating agencies in the USA. They are also known as the three sisters.They gave the best possible ratings to all the banks and institutions which failed recently. And these Rating Agencies have the audacity to issue ratings to sovereign governments.

I have seen how the ISO: 9000 certificates are issued by the Certification Agencies. They hardly check any books or the system as they are supposed to do. As long as they are paid their fees, the certification continues.

Lately, we have seen how officers of AICTE have taken money an issued accreditation to institutions to make them Deemed Universities.

After seeing the above, how can we believe that the Accreditation Agencies will give genuine certificates. They will also take money and issue accreditation certificates.

The only solution is to have a second tier organisation which would check the performance of these rating agencies.

And if the issue is important and involves large monetary transactions there could be a third tier to check the 1st and 2nd tier.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Msgs from friends 37

Msg from K K Rai

Dear RS

Its fun reading all the junk.we used to read all the comics we could get hold of remember?well that cock-a-doodle beat all those comics.I'm still trying to put up a straight face from having my cheeks torn up to my ears controlling my laugh.Pl keep sending stuffs that keeps one smiling.



Msg from Partha Sengupta

Dear Friend

"In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity."
---Albert Einstein-----

I think you will agree that for most people in business 2009 has been a difficult year.
I do hope and pray that MA DURGA will bring to you PEACE, HOPE & LOTS OF OPPORTUNITIES.
Good Wishes


Msg from Ranjan Guha Mazumdar

Dear Friends,

Our Web Site should be spinning on the World Wide Web within the next few days.

The Web Site is being conceived as a COMMON Web Site for GOETHALS ALUMNI and not exclusively for the Kolkata Chapter. A Search of the World Wide Web (WWW) has revealed that there are NO Web Sites either exclusively of any Chapter nor a Common Site for all Goethals Alumni. Although a Search for Goethals Memorial School or even Goethals Alumni may throw up many results / links.

Anyway, we hope and expect that all Goethals Alumni (all over the world) will join us in expanding the site and making this a Comprehensive Web Site for Ex-Goethalites.

I have started off with the following links

• Goethals Memorial School
o History
o School Anthem
o Past Principals
o Present Principal
o Notable Alumni
o Photo Gallery
• Goethals Alumni (Kolkata)
o Registration
o Governing Body
o Members
o Activities
o Photo Gallery
o Contact
Please remember that this is just the beginning and we shall be adding / modifying and expanding as we go along. So, PLEASE MAIL ME YOUR SUGGESTIONS / IDEAS of what you would like to see on the Web Site.

Plan to expand the Web Site with Batch-Wise Sub-Domains where we can have photographs etc. exclusive to a particular batch.

For POSTING OF MESSAGES etc,. an Exclusive BLOG has already been created and this Blog will be linked via the Main Web Site including Radheshyam’s existing and popular Blog. You may START using the Blog and posting your messages right away.

In addition, we shall be creating and allotting exclusive E-mail ID’s for the Office Bearers which they can use and download mails to this mail ID using their existing E-Mail clients like Microsoft Outlook, Outlook Express etc.

I request the following from our friends :
1. Photographs of common interest. For the time being please avoid batch photos. We will upload these later in Sub-Domains. Preferably please make these photos available to me on CD to retain their quality.
2. Information that you feel should find a place on the Web Site
3. Passport size photographs of all Governing Body Members.
4. Photographs related to the Centenary Celebrations.
5. Photographs of the school and various functions / occasions like Sports, Con\cert etc. Please provide clear Captions identifying each photo
6. Name of all Principals till the present Principal
7. Information on other Chapters / Alumni in other parts of the country / globe
8. Etc.

In short, please let your suggestions flow with what ever you may have with you by way of Photos, Articles, etc.

Please also HELP us by circulating this mail amongst your friends / batch-mates where ever they may be so that we can get access to lot of information, photos etc.

Waiting for your mails.


Ranjan Guha Majumder

Dear Anthony.

Refer to our meeting earlier this morning. As already informed, the Web Site, as suggested by you and few others, is on the verge of being launched. Sheall be informing you more in detail about that in a few days.

Meanwhile, a BLOG (for posting messages) has already been created and you may start using the same by going to Ofcourse ultimately this will be linked to the Web Site along with the Blog being already maintained by Radheshyam which has already become very popular over the years.

I am requesting everyone to provide me Photos etc. (preferably on CD) so that these can be Uploaded to the Web Site thus making these available to everyone in any part o the Globe to see, enjoy and comment. Besides photos, any stories, incidences yokes etc. which you all feel would make our site more informative, and enjoyable would be welcome.

Please also help us with more of your ideas and suggestions,

Thanks N Regards

Msg from Devaprosad Chakravarti

Dear Friend,

May I make a small correction - it was not a British MP but Sarojoni Naidu who said that " it costs us a lot of money to enable Ghandiji to travel Third Class - "

Best wishes,

Devaprosad Chakravarti


Dear Devaprosad,

Thanks, I stand corrected.
Your are right.
Sarojini Naidu said " it cost the nation a fortune to keep Gandhi living in poverty"


Now the AI Pilots Strike Work

Two AI flights cancelled as some pilots start agitation

PTI | New Delhi

Two Air India flights were on Saturday cancelled due to an agitation called by a section of the national airlines' pilots to protest the up to 50 per cent reduction in their productivity-linked incentives (PLIs).

Air India's flights to Mumbai and Kabul were cancelled this morning as the pilots did not report for duty, airline officials said.

The passengers of the cancelled flight to Mumbai have been accommodated in the next flight while those going to Kabul have been lodged in a hotel.

A section of Air India Executive pilots had last night threatened to go on the agitation to protest the reduction in their productivity-linked incentives (PLIs).

Representative of Executive pilots Captain Bhalla had said that "the Executive pilots have taken a decision to go on strike because nobody is in state of mind to work due to the salary cuts. Starting now, we will not work."

Official sources said the Executive pilots were taken on board over the PLI reduction and their move was surprising.

There are around 300 Executive pilots in the national carrier and since they are part of the airlines management, they cannot form a union and also cannot go on strike, official sources said.

Citing the massive cut in their PLI as the reason for the strike, Bhalla said, "With a stroke of a pen, the CMD Arvind Jadhav has cut 70 per cent salary of all the Executive pilots with 50 per cent being evident and 20 per cent hidden."

"He is trying to hire foreign pilots at the rate of USD 13,500 and wants us to work for peanuts," he alleged.

Bhalla alleged that the Chairman had not discussed the salary cuts with Executive pilots.

After Jet airways succumbed to the threat of their pilots it was only expected that the pilots of other airlines would follow suit.

As with the Pay Commission Awards where one department after another go on strikes to force the government to accede to their demands now that difficult times have set in the people will not accept cut in their salaries.
I have said before, all future Pay Commissions should be scrapped.
These same people do not accept cuts when the going is bad.
The government cannot possibly give the extra pays which it is giving to its employees.
It is just printing currency since it is empowered to do so.
This creates inflation and the common man and farmers suffer and commit suicide.
Then it has again to waive the farmers loan and print more currency to pay the banks from whom the farmer had taken loan.
When is this madness of financing debt going to continue?
When we face the same difficulties as being faced by the USA?
It is fortunate that we Indians are savers and not spenders otherwise we too would have been in the boat with USA.
But then our interest rates are astronomical compared to theirs so we have no choice but to save.
Of course, with inflation, we do not gain much by saving.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Advani repeats like a parrot

Advani renews Ram temple pledge on Rathyatra's 20th anniversary

PTI | Somnath (Junagadh)

Despite the Ram Mandir issue failing to cut much ice with voters, senior BJP Leader L K Advani on Friday reaffirmed his commitment to building the temple at Ayodhya.

"Today, I have come to Somnath to offer my prayers on the 20th anniversary of my Rathyatra. Ram temple should be and will be built at Ayodhya," Advani said after offering prayers.

It was from here on September 25, 1990, that he had launched his Ram Rathyatra, which, though ending abruptly with his arrest in Bihar, had put the BJP firmly on the road to power.

"I visit Somnath every year this day and will continue to do so till Ram temple comes up at Ayodhya," Advani, who was accompanied by his daughter Pratibha, said.

Mr Advani must either be a mad man or an idiot.
If he still does not understand that the people of India are fed up of this clarion call, that must be the only explanation.
Mr. Advani, your above statement is not going to help you win elections so please once and for all, please repeating it like a parrot.
Please buck up and ask the states where you still have a government to pull up their socks and do some work or your party will be wiped off the face of India.
You raised the strength of your party and you will be instrumental in demolishing it.
For your information, I once supported the BJP.

The Importance of Beer

Sent by Prakash Bhartia, for the Pujas

"Well ya see, Norm, it's like this... A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo. And when the herd is hunted, it is the slowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members. In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Excessive intake of alcohol, as we know, kills brain cells. But naturally, it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine. That's why you always feel smarter after a few beers."

Cliff Clavin

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Shabana Speaks

Islam not synonymous with terrorism: Shabana Azmi

Actor Shabana Azmi speaking at the ‘Shared History -The Indian Experience in South Africa’ festival in Johannesburg on Wednesday.

JOHANNESBURG: To say that Islam is synonymous with terrorism is “unjust and unfair,” Indian actress-activist Shabana Azmi told an audience here as she launched a retrospective of her films.

“I think that the 9/11 crisis also became an opportunity, because it was the first time that Muslims got together to make the world realise that Islam is not homogeneous, that it resides in 53 countries of the world, and becomes the culture of the country in which it resides,” Ms. Azmi said.

The actress is on a tour of three South African cities this week as part of the ‘Shared History Festival’ that showcases Indian art, culture and cuisine each year for a six-week period.

Participating in a discussion on Islam, Ms. Azmi said, “[Islam] is liberal in some countries, moderate in others, intolerant in some and extremist in the others. But it is not homogeneous. To say that Islam is synonymous with terrorism is unjust, unfair and cannot be accepted because it is a blatant untruth.” — PTI

I totally agree with Shabana that Islam is not synonymous with terrorism.
I would go on and say no religion in the world preaches violence.
At least the originators of the religion did not.
It is the followers who stray away from the path for their own selfish ends.
Like Richard the Lion hearted going on a crusade to convert the infidels in the middle east.
Or like Aurangzeb converting the Hindus or torturing or killing them.
Or the Hindus killing missionaries in Orissa for converting people to Christianity.
When people like Shabana and her husband or the umpteen Muslim film stars in Bollywood refuse to speak up and organize a movement and let the reins remain in the hands of the Mullahs and Maulvis whose only education qualifications consists on how fast they can recite the Quoran and how well they can incite anger in the minds of their followers, this problem will remain.
People of the world will not hear of the good deeds done by Muslims because that is not put in the news.
But they will read of thefts, extortion, murders, smuggling and terrorism committed by the Muslims and that will be the impression that will remain in their minds, for they read it everyday.
So, it is up to the educated Muslims to change the perception by reining in the Mullahs, Maulvis and the Madarssas.

No Carrot, only Stick

Delhi alters Maoist strategy
- Anti-rebel operations first, development later

New Delhi, Sept. 23: The Centre has effected a key, and contentious, shift in its anti-Naxalite strategy, delinking development imperatives from armed crackdown which is now being flagged as a top priority.

“Police action and development do not go hand in hand, as if they were lovers,” a top source in the Union home ministry said today.

“Police action has to precede development because development just cannot happen in territory where the government can’t enter. We must first rid areas of armed Maoists, establish our authority and then, of course, it is our intention to implement development programmes.”

This marks a significant change in the Centre’s approach to dealing with Naxalism, which has hitherto been to achieve a calibrated mix of addressing socio-economic grievances and neutralising armed rebellion.

Admitting that this was a meditated change in tack after P. Chidambaram’s arrival as home ministry boss, a source said: “We are on the confrontation path with Left-wing extremists, they have spread to 2,000 of the 14,000 police station areas in the country. We have to regain territory from them and establish and assert our authority, roads and schools and hospitals and telephones will follow. We cannot have any development in areas that we do not hold, so first they have to be rid of the extremists bent on violence.”

Leading internal security think tanks, such as the Institute of Conflict Management headed by K.P.S. Gill, have long been lobbying the Centre to give precedence to the “war on Naxalites” and not “confuse it with development issues”.

Articulating views that are already with the home minister, Ajai Sahni, executive director of the institute, said: “Unless and until we have totally eliminated the disruptive dominance of Maoists over large parts, there is no point talking of development, they are the biggest stumbling block to development, they have to be removed first.”

Home ministry sources repeatedly quoted the June 12 document of the CPI (Maoist) to argue that the Naxalites were “bent on violence and mayhem against the state and the people” and, therefore, the government had to “squarely meet” the threat posed by them.

The June document flays the government’s preparations to counter Naxalites in their strongholds and says: “We have to once again prepare the people of the area to resist the marauders and mercenaries sent by Sonia-Manmohan-Chidambaram combine to subdue them, destroy their culture and loot the resources of the region for the benefit of a handful of exploiters. This time the fight will be more long-drawn and more bitter than the one against the British imperialist armies.”

The sources said the government was prepared to negotiate with the Maoists if they “abjured arms” but asserted that the June document was proof they had no such intention.

“At the moment, the red terror can only be tamed by the state asserting its authority,” a source said. “They are the aggressors, not the state of India, they are blowing up roads and hijacking trains, they are destroying public property, they are the ones who have undertaken to violently overthrow the state, we have to stop them. Our forces will be deployed to rollback these so called liberators.”

The sources offered no insight into the anti-Naxalite offensive — no modus, no timelines — but underlined that the Centre was “determined to go after elements that were ideologically committed to the politics of violence”.

The Centre’s new stern line comes in the midst of a surge in state-Naxalite confrontation across several states including Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Bihar.

In a move that could indicate the home ministry is laying the ground for a major offensive, it is also employing a high-voltage PR offensive against Naxalites, placing ads in a slew of newspapers.

It may be no coincidence that over the last month, police have picked up two top Maoists leaders — Amit Bagchi in Ranchi and Khobad Ghandy in Delhi — taking the number of politburo members in custody to seven — the result, officials maintain, of better and more cross-linked intelligence inputs.

Asked whether these arrests were part of a broader drive to mop up not merely CPI (Maoist) members but also Naxalite sympathisers, a source said: “These (the people being arrested) are committed to the overthrow of the state, they are top leaders of a proscribed organisation, the law applies to them and it is being applied. If we find them in Chhattisgarh they will be picked up there, if they are in Delhi they will be picked up here, but we are going by the due process of law, we are not bumping them off. We are totally against fake encounters, they are condemnable, but if people wage war on the nation, they are in violation of the law of the land.”

We all know that the carrot and stick method is the best way to achieve your goal.
If the government thinks that by using just the stick it can control the Maoist movement, it is living in a fool's paradise.
They have been advised to act on this policy by none other than K P S Gill who was instrumental in bringing peace to Punjab.
The government should realize that the situation ins Punjab and the rest of India vis-a-vis the Maoist movement is completely different.
Punjab has Pakistan on the west and Kashmir on the north.
The Khalistanis were thus hampered in that they could get no sanctuary in those two places.
The states where Maoism is flourishing in India are open on all sides to other states of the Indian Union.
Each state has a government ruled by a different party.
The Maoist are poor people who have full support from the local populace who have been meted out injustice by the established political parties.
Hence, unless the government takes up development work in those areas simultaneously, the governments efforts are bound to fail.
The development work should be undertaken by people who see that 100% of the aid reaches the targeted people and not just 10% as has been accepted by both Rajeev Gandhi and his son Rahul Gandhi.
The main reason for the failure so far has been corruption which did not allow the benefits to percolate down to the people.
The government and its servants are just interested in padding their own nests by giving themselves 50% wage increases while the people in the Maoist areas earn less than Rs 20/- per day.
The government thinks by shooting the people, it can solve the problem.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Some beautiful photographs of Dolomite Mountains in Italy sent by Karanvir

Hi Radheshyam,
I was hoping tobe in Kolkata for Durga Puja but unfortunately could not make it. But I managed to go for a week to the Dolomite mountains in Italy (towards the Austrian border) and am attaching a few photographs. During the week we had warm sunny days and some early snow too.

Jadavpur University students Expelled

Varsity expels ragging three

Jadavpur University has expelled three students for ragging and barred them from seeking admission in any other institution for a year, making this the strongest penalty for any offence in its 53-year history.

The university’s executive council took the decision on Tuesday after several days of debating the anti-ragging committee’s recommendation to expel the engineering students for ragging five freshers.

The council, which is the university’s highest policy-making body, also upheld the anti-ragging committee’s suggestion to suspend one student for four semesters — or two years — and expel him from the hostel. As recommended by the panel, another student was expelled from the hostel for the same offence.

“The university has never before taken such a drastic step. On many occasions, students have been suspended for various offences, including ragging, but this is the first time that someone has been expelled for ragging or any other offence,” said pro vice-chancellor Siddhartha Dutta.

Five first-year students of engineering had lodged a complaint with the university’s anti-ragging squad on September 4, accusing six seniors of subjecting them to physical and mental abuse in the Block A-1 hostel.

A committee set up to probe the incident submitted its report to vice-chancellor P.N. Ghosh last week.

The panel suggested that three of the culprits be expelled and barred from taking admission in any other institution for a certain period of time. The report left it to the executive council to decide how long the students should be barred from seeking admission in any other institution.

While it endorsed all the recommendations, the executive council decided to institute a separate inquiry into the ragging victims’ flip-flop two days after lodging a complaint against six seniors.

The freshers had stunned everyone by claiming that the dean of students had forced them to sign a “false” complaint against their seniors.

“A section of council members demanded an inquiry to find out what had prompted the five first-year students to change their mind and lodge a complaint against the dean,” said a council member.

Pro vice-chancellor Dutta said the university would take a decision on how to go about the inquiry after the Puja holidays.

At last some positive action is being taken to wipe out the menace of ragging from institutes.
I would like to congratulate the council members for taking this FIRM action.
I do not believe what the freshers are now saying that they have been forced to make the complaint.
Rather, I feel it is the other way round.
The freshers have been cajoled and threatened by the seniors to change their minds so that action would not be taken against the culprits.
Let this be a precedent and a warning to senior students all over India.

Our President

President plays, Cong sweats

New Delhi, Sept. 22: The Congress and the NCP announced a 174-114 seat-sharing arrangement for the Maharashtra polls late tonight after President Pratibha Patil’s hard lobbying for son Rajendra Shekhawat and a few other candidates caused an embarrassing hold-up in the announcement.

With three days left for filing nominations, the Congress high command was faced with a bizarre impasse created by India’s First Lady who, as constitutional head of the nation, is not expected to indulge in politicking of any sort, least of all for family.

Highly placed Congress sources told The Telegraph that at one stage, Patil herself called defence minister A.K. Antony, who is also in charge of Maharashtra affairs, to ensure her son got the nod.

In what might indicate that Rashtrapati Bhavan was getting its way, Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan said Shekhawat had every right to “enter the electoral fray”.

The debate among Congress leaders from Maharashtra centred mostly around Rajendra Shekhawat, whose ticket has become a prestige issue.

The sitting Amravati MLA, Sunil Deshmukh, a highly rated young minister who enjoys the backing of a majority of his cabinet colleagues, refused to oblige the high command and threatened to contest as a rebel candidate. A proposal to accommodate him elsewhere failed to break the impasse.

The Congress leadership admits the wrangling over Shekhawat’s candidacy has been “extremely damaging” both for the party and Rashtrapati Bhavan. Sources said that the President was believed to be pushing for a few more of her acolytes in the Maharashtra Congress, most of them belonging to her Rajput caste.

Sources said the party tried its best to persuade Sunil to opt out as ignoring the President’s wish would be difficult.

Sunil, who has been in Delhi to argue his case against the overpowering influence from Rashtrapati Bhavan, was told by chief minister Ashok Chavan and a few central leaders that the party could not be seen as rebuffing the President at a time other veterans had managed tickets for their relatives.

Sunil refused to buy this logic and expressed his determination to contest from the same constituency. The President’s son, known as Raosaheb, Sunil contended, would prove a weak candidate in comparison.

Sunil apparently warned the leadership that his rebel candidacy would adversely affect the prospects of the Congress in the entire Vidarbha region. Sources said former chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh saw merit in this argument and opposed the case of the President’s son.

Although most senior leaders feel the prospects of the President’s son are not very bright, the high command appears unwilling to ignore his case as some of Patil’s other recommendations were not given much importance.

Some posts in the government of India are supposed to be above politics.
These include the office of President, Vice President, Speaker of the Lok Sabha and the Chief Election Commissioner.
It shows how low our government has sunk when the President of India, who is supposed to head the government neutrally should hanker for a seat for her son to fight the elections from the Congress party. Where is the neutrality.
This woman was corrupt before she became a President and there was great hue and cry at the time of her elections.
Even after assuming the august office of the President of India she continues her corrupt ways.
She is the one who is lecturing the nation on corruption and she herself is practising it to the hilt.
What a shameless woman?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Happy Birthday to our Blog

Today is the first day of the beginning of the third year for our blog.
Two years is a long time in this age where gadgets become obsolete in 6 months.
When we started this blog on 21st September, 2007, I had no idea which direction it would take or how long it would last. The idea just struck me when I attended the first pre-centenary get-together at Bengal Club.
There have been differences of opinion and we have agreed to differ.
The articles contributed mostly by you have been on a wide variety of subjects which have maintained the interest of our readers. Rather, this blog would not have generated the interest it has without your contributions. I have maintained all along that it is our blog.
Since the blog is read by families and all age of children, we have tried to keep the reading matter suitable for everybody.
I know most of you will agree with me when I say that we would have appreciated more interest from our school, Goethals by way of news about the school and articles. The principal in his wisdom may have wanted his wards to concentrate on their studies and not be distracted by blogs.
We accept his decision with all humility.
We have tried to make the blog inclusive so that all the hill schools of Darjeeling can contribute articles. We have been successful to a certain extent but not as much as we would have wanted.
One of the best achievements has been to help each other with job opportunities. WE hope this co-operation will continue.
Another beneficial spinout has been the starting of our Alumni website which is being actively followed up by Ranjan Guha Mazumdar. We hope the website will make our boys more inter-active.
I sincerely hope that all of us continue the co-operation to celebrate many for birthdays of our blog.

One Ghandy arrested

Silver-spoon Maoist held

New Delhi, Sept. 21: A Maoist politburo member, who studied in Doon School and Elphinstone College before he went underground with his wife, has been arrested in Delhi, sources said.

Khobad Ghandy, the 58-year-old member of the CPI (Maoist) politburo, was apparently arrested last night but police did not make any official announcement through the day. The politburo has 13 members, which puts Ghandy among the top 13 Maoist leaders in the country.

“I have no official information on this (the arrest),” said Delhi police public relations officer Rajan Bhagat.

But the sources said Ghandy, said to be in charge of the publication wing and of spreading the organisation’s influence in urban areas, had been produced before a magistrate who remanded him in judicial custody for 14 days.

Ghandy’s reported arrest swings the spotlight back to the early seventies when a generation of the brightest used to be drawn to extremist ideologies.

He was born into an affluent Parsi family that had a house famed for its antique furniture in Worli Sea Face in Mumbai, an ice-cream factory and a resort in Mahabaleswar. The young Ghandy went to public school and later to Elphinstone College in Mumbai.

He married Anuradha who hailed from a Konkan family that owned a coffee plantation. Anuradha died this year of cerebral malaria.

The couple disappeared from the mainstream years ago, friends recalled today. “They took care to destroy most of their photographs, even those from their younger days, as they did not want them to fall into the hands of the police. When Anuradha died, we could not find any photograph,” a friend said tonight.

The couple chose not to have any children because of the risks associated with their lives, the friend added. “He is the only one in our circle to have joined the Naxalites. Most others are now in the corporate sector or, of late, with NGOs,” the friend said.

The People’s Union for Democratic Rights (PUDR), a rights group, asked the government to confirm whether Ghandy had been arrested. “Given that many a Maoist leader in (the) recent past has been killed in custody, we urge the ministry of home affairs to confirm whether they have arrested the Maoist leader. And if they have, to produce him before a magistrate in order to ensure that he is not tortured or killed in fake encounter,” a statement said.

Security sources said the arrest could be the result of heightened activity by the government ahead of an expected crackdown on Naxalites in central and eastern India. Last month, a Maoist central military commission member was arrested.

The Centre is planning the joint operation in November after elections conclude in Maharashtra and Haryana where 200 companies of paramilitary forces are engaged in poll duty.

The above shows the frustration felt by the educated class who have some feelings left.The nexus between criminals, police and politicians angers us so much that many a time I too feel like taking up arms.
I understand the feeling of Khobad Ghandy.
It was another Gandhi (with a different spelling) who led India against the British to get us political independence.
I wonder, if this Ghandy will be able to give India economic independence from the vultures who call themselves politicians and leaders.
The British yoke was removed from our shoulders but the Indian yoke harnessed on us by our corrupt leaders will not be removed easily.
Gandhi was able to remove the British yoke by non-violent means because the Britsh were educated and cared for world opinion.
The Indian yoke, it seems, will require violence, to which the Maoist have wedded themselves.

Either way they will die.
It is better to kill some of the establishment than to die of hunger, they have decided.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Global Turnabout!

Global Turnabout - China is hiring, and young Americans are going………….

2009 The Associated Press

BEIJING - When the best job Mikala Reasbeck could find after college in Boston was counting pills part-time in a drugstore for $7 an hour, she took the drastic step of jumping on a plane to Beijing in February to look for work.
A week after she started looking, the 23-year-old from Wheeling, West Virginia, had a full-time job teaching English.
"I applied for jobs all over the U.S. There just weren't any," said Reasbeck, who speaks no Chinese but had volunteered at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. In China, she said, "the jobs are so easy to find. And there are so many."
Young foreigners like Reasbeck are coming to China to look for work in its unfamiliar but less bleak economy, driven by the worst job markets in decades in the United States, Europe and some Asian countries.
Many do basic work such as teaching English, a service in demand from Chinese businesspeople and students. But a growing number are arriving with skills and experience in computers, finance and other fields.
"China is really the land of opportunity now, compared to their home countries," said Chris Watkins, manager for China and Hong Kong of MRI China Group, a headhunting firm. "This includes college graduates as well as maybe more established businesspeople, entrepreneurs and executives from companies around the world."
Watkins said the number of resumes his company receives from abroad has tripled over the past 18 months.
China's job market has been propped up by Beijing's 4 trillion yuan ($586 billion) stimulus, which helped to boost growth to 7.9 percent from a year earlier in the quarter that ended June 30, up from 6.1 percent the previous quarter. The government says millions of jobs will be created this year, though as many as 12 million job-seekers still will be unable to find work.
Andrew Carr, a 23-year-old Cornell University graduate, saw China as a safer alternative after classmates' offers of Wall Street jobs were withdrawn due to the economic turmoil.
Passing up opportunities in New York, San Francisco and Boston, Carr started work in August at, a Web site in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen that lets the public or companies advertise and pay for help in carrying out business research, getting into schools, finding people and other tasks.
"I noticed the turn the economy was taking, and decided it would be best to go directly to China," said Carr, who studied Chinese for eight years.
Most of his classmates stayed in the United States and have taken some unusual jobs — one as a fishing guide in Alaska.
China can be more accessible to job hunters than economies where getting work permits is harder, such as Russia and some European Union countries.
Some 217,000 foreigners held work permits at the end of 2008, up from 210,000 a year earlier, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. Thousands more use temporary business visas and go abroad regularly to renew them.
Reasbeck said it took her two months to find the drugstore job after she graduated from Boston's Emerson College with a degree in writing, literature and publishing. She said she applied to as many as 50 employers nationwide.
Today, on top of her teaching job, she works part-time recruiting other native English-speaking teachers. She makes 14,000 to 16,000 yuan ($2,000 to $2,300) a month.
Some foreigners see China not just as a refuge but as a source of opportunities they might not get at home.
"Having one or two years on your resume of China experiences is only going to help you back at headquarters in the United States or if you apply for business schools," said Shaun Rein, managing director of China Market Research Group in Shanghai.
Konstantin Schamber, a 27-year-old German, passed up possible jobs at home to become business manager for a Beijing law firm, where he is the only foreign employee.
"I believe China is the same place as the United States used to be in the 1930s that attracts a lot of people who'd like to have either money or career opportunities," Schamber said.
Job hunters from other Asian countries also are looking to China.
An Kwang-jin, a 30-year-old South Korean photographer, has worked as a freelancer for a year in the eastern city of Qingdao. He said China offered more opportunities as South Korea struggles with a sluggish economy.
Still, foreigners will face more competition from a rising number of educated, English-speaking young Chinese, some of them returning from the West with work experience, Rein said.
"You have a lot of Chinese from top universities who are making $500-$600 a month," Rein said. "Making a case that you are much better than they are is very hard."

Now Trinumul Congress Extorts

Trinamul on Maoist notice
- Threat over Nandigram ‘extortion’
Boys eat in a relief camp in Nandigram. (Jahangir Badsa)

Sept. 20: Maoists have warned that Trinamul Congress activists in Nandigram will “pay with their lives” if they don’t stop threatening and extorting money from CPM activists.

A senior Maoist leader has said Trinamul workers in Nandigram who were “torturing” poor villagers just because they were CPM supporters would soon have to face verdict in the “people’s court”.

Nandigram, which was once a Left bastion, had become the launch pad for Trinamul’s resurgence after the land acquisition backlash that paid the Opposition party rich dividends in the panchayat and Lok Sabha elections.

During Mamata Banerjee’s land movement in Nandigram, the government and the CPM had often alleged that her party had the active support of the Maoists. Trinamul had dismissed such suggestions.

However, once the Centre sent paramilitary forces to Lalgarh and a security operation was launched, the Maoists started publicly criticising Trinamul for failing to stop the crackdown despite being part of the Union government. Maoist leader Kishanji had then accused Mamata of failing to return the favour extended in Nandigram.

The threat issued now by another Maoist leader has injected a menacing edge to what has so far been confined to occasional criticism.

Trinamul workers in Nandigram will have to “pay for their act, maybe with their lives”, the senior rebel leader — a CPI (Maoist) central committee member — said in a recent interaction.

In Nandigram, Trinamul men are targeting poor CPM supporters. They are extorting money from them and denying them jobs under the rural job scheme, he said.

The Telegraph spoke to some CPM supporters who said they were at the receiving end of Trinamul’s “extortion”.

One of them, 30-year-old Narayan Das, was not allowed to bring his father’s body back to his Sonachura home in Nandigram and Trinamul workers would not let him perform the last rites until he coughed up Rs 2 lakh.

Narayan, a supervisor with a construction company in Cuttack, said: “When I reached Chandipur, about 40km from Sonachura, my relatives called me on my cellphone and told me I would not be allowed to perform my father’s last rites until I paid Rs 2 lakh to the local Trinamul leaders. Finally, my relatives took the body to the village for cremation and I had to return to Cuttack.”

Narayan said the local Trinamul leaders have also prevented his brothers from cultivating five bighas that his father left for them. “They allowed cultivation on one bigha after I paid Rs 10,000. But they are still demanding Rs 2 lakh.”

Another Sonachura CPM supporter and a farm labourer, Rabin Mondal, alleged that he was being denied work under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme. “I am not being given work under the 100 days’ scheme. No one is giving me a job as a farm labourer as Trinamul leaders have asked villagers not to,” said 30-year-old Rabin.

A CPM supporter in Gokulnagar who works as a clerk in the irrigation department in Mahishadal fled his home a year ago after Trinamul activists demanded Rs 2 lakh from him too.

He now lives near his work place, but his wife and two children are still in Gokulnagar. “My wife and two sons live in my two-storey house in the village. I have 10 bighas to cultivate. So I gave them Rs 1 lakh. They have said they will leave me alone only after I pay the remaining amount,” he said, requesting anonymity.

The Trinamul leadership in Nandigram denied that CPM supporters were facing extortion threats. “Our workers have not extorted money or resorted to any oppression. There is no question of demanding money from CPM supporters,” said Abu Taher, Trinamul leader and chief of Nandigram panchayat samiti.

The more things change, the more they remain the same.
So far people were troubled by the extortion racket of the CPM.
Now that the Trinumul has come to prominence, the same people have now joined the Trinumul and have started extortion.
I am happy that the Maoist have threatened them with the same fate as the CPM if they continue this type of activities.
It just shows that the Maoists are not all that bad after all.
It is only the injustice perpetrated on them by the system that has forced them to take up arms.
If only they would not kill innocent people.
Criminals,Police and Politicians are OK to kill, if they are corrupt, since they are the cause of the mess the society is in presently.
But innocent people should be spared if they are to retain the goodwill of the masses.

Shivaji Statue in Mumbai

Swim against memorial tide
- Unusual voice in Bollywood against statue splurge

Mumbai, Sept. 20: Music director Vishal Dadlani has done what Bollywood stars usually dare not — get on the wrong side of politicians.

The man who set the scores for Om Shanti Om (with partner Shekhar Ravjiani) has started an online signature campaign against the state government’s plans to erect a Rs 350-crore statue of Shivaji on the Marine Drive waterfront.

Shivaji is an icon in Maharashtra, with a powerful political party drawing its identity from his legacy and any perceived slur on the legendary Maratha ruler prone to invite vandal attacks.

Dadlani’s move, however, is rapidly gaining support from Mumbai residents, with the number of signatories on his website jumping from 11,500 to 12,123 in just an hour on Friday and reaching 13,766 on Sunday.

Dadlani, 36, lead singer of Pentagram and known as a cool dude with a cool head, plans to file a public interest litigation in Bombay High Court against the statue project after the number of signatures reaches 25,000.

The online petition says the sum of Rs 350 crore should be used better rather than be wasted on political tokenism, aimed at winning Maratha votes in the October Assembly elections

“We mean no disrespect to the memory of Shri Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, who was a truly great and able king…. We feel that the proposed statue/memorial… is an unnecessary expense for the exchequer…” the petition says.

Although Bollywood’s big stars have not joined in, at least so far, Dadlani’s campaign has received a thumbs-up from filmmakers Farhan Akhtar and sister Zoya Akhtar.

“I have not specifically approached any Bollywood personalities. If they strongly believe in what I am doing, they are welcome to join in,” Dadlani said.

Such citizen’s campaigns against government projects may not be common in India, but Mumbai has already witnessed a mass anti-politician mood after the 26/11 attacks, which is when Dadlani launched his website to campaign for restrained TV coverage of terror attacks. The current campaign began late last month.

Dadlani is probably not risking the wrath of Bal Thackeray, whom none in Bollywood would want to annoy. The Shiv Sena has not opposed the project for obvious reasons but has termed it political opportunism by the Congress-NCP government.

Even the 14-party Republic Left Democratic Front, made up of the Dalit parties, the Left and the Samajwadi Party, has not opposed the statue. Instead, its poll manifesto promises a similar statue of Babasaheb Ambedkar in the Arabian Sea.

In his message on the website, Mumbai resident Sandeep Bhasin compares the state government’s move with Mayavati’s statue obsession.

“On one hand we are made to believe that Congress believes in Sonia’s austerity drive and on the other, we witness waste of taxpayers’ money in absolutely meaningless memorials for political gains,” he writes.

Vispi Elavia requests the state’s chief justice “to pass a law wherein politicians don’t waste public money on statues”.

Dadlani, who set the foot-tapping music for Bachna Ae Haseeno and Dostana recently, says creating an island for the statue off the Marine Drive waterfront could obstruct the proposed extension of the Bandra-Worli Sea Link to Nariman Point.

“The memorial would be smack in the path of the proposed Sea Link (expansion), and the island would be created at huge environmental cost.”

Dadlani says the funds could be put to better use, such as providing succour to drought-hit farmers or improving Mumbai’s pot-holed roads.

“We could certainly do with more schools/colleges, providing education to the underprivileged at no cost. These could all be named in memory of Shivaji.”

After the Supreme Court's reprimand of Mayawati in UP, I am surprised at the Maharashtra Government's indescretion in trying to erect statues of Shivaji.
Fools rush in where angels fear to tread.
The Supreme Court cannot disallow one and allow another.
It would give a handle to Mayawati of establishing her claim that the court was anti-dalit.

Death Row Criminals - Mercy Petition

Decide fast on death row convicts: SC

Abraham Thomas | New Delhi

Don’t treat them as pawns to suit political purposes, Govt told

In a direction that is bound to revive the debate on delay in disposing of the mercy petition of Parliament attack convict Mohammad Afzal Guru, the Supreme Court has said that the authorities “must act swiftly” in deciding the petitions of death convicts and the Government should not treat them as “chattels and pawns” to suit its political purposes.

Taking strong exception to the delay on part of the Government to dispose of mercy petitions filed by death convicts, the SC has asked the Centre to take note of the plight of these convicts for whom each passing day becomes an “agonising” wait.Dismissing an appeal filed by a man sentenced to death for murdering his wife and five children, a Bench of Justices HS Bedi and JM Panchal said, “We must say with the greatest emphasis that human beings are not chattels and should not be used as pawns in furthering some larger political or Government policy.”

The Bench’s remark is bound to revive debate on the pending mercy plea of Mohammad Afzal, who was ordered to be hanged in 2006 by the Supreme Court. However, he continues to survive, with his mercy appeal still pending decision. Noting that in some cases mercy pleas were not decided for over a decade, an anguished Bench noted, “We take this opportunity to remind the Governments concerned of their obligations under the aforementioned statutory and constitutional provisions.” As many as 26 mercy appeals are pending with the President.

The court even made out a case for a death row prisoner to claim advantage of lesser punishment in the event his mercy plea gets delayed for years altogether. Making this proposal, the Bench said, “The condemned prisoner and his suffering relatives have, therefore, a very pertinent right in insisting that a decision in the matter be taken within a reasonable time, failing which the power should be exercised in favour of the prisoner.”

The court was referring to the remission power of the President and Governor under Article 72 and 161 of the Constitution respectively. This power has to be exercised on the advice of the executive authority. This led the court to suggest that it is the Government that is to be held at fault.

Asking the Government to consider the plight of the death row prisoners, the Bench observed, “Those of us who have had the occasion to inspect a jail where executions are carried out, have first-hand knowledge of the agony and horror that a condemned prisoner undergoes every day.”

In addition to the solitary confinement and lack of privacy with respect to even the daily ablutions, a condemned prisoner lives a life of uncertainty and defeat. This agony is more for a prisoner whose prison overlooks the gallows with the menacing structure facing him each day,” the Bench noted.

What compounds the agony is the plight of the prisoner’s family. “Equally, consider the plight of the family of such a prisoner; his parents, wife, children, brothers and sisters, who too remain static and in a state of limbo…and are unable to get on with life on account of the uncertain fate of a loved one,” the Bench said. The delay to act on the mercy plea leads to “indifference and ennui” among the family members, brought about by a combination of resignation, exhaustion and despair borne of the agonising wait, it noted.

See, even the Supreme Court is anguished at the feet dragging and politicking of the powers at the centre on an important issue.
A death sentence is awarded to a criminal after taking everything into consideration.
It is given in the rarest of rare cases.
After so much care, I do not see why the government should drag its feet and make the case ripe for politciking.
Rather, once the death sentence is confirmed by the Supreme Court, there should be no furher entertainment of mercy petitions.
India cannot afford to house and feed these criminals who may be used as bargaining points to get other terrorists released as happened in Dec, 1999 at Khandar, Afghanistan.Three terrorists - Masood Azhar, Omar Sheikh and Mushtaq Ahmed Zargar, lodged in Indian jails were exchanged for 164 persons when IC-814 was hijacked on a flight from Nepal.
Earlier too in 1989, we had the got up kidnapping of Mufti Mohammad Sayeed's daughter Rubaiya and exchanging her freedom for those of five terrorists Sheikh Abdul Hameed, a JKLF “area commander” Ghulam Nabi Butt, younger brother of the late Maqbool Butt; Noor Muhammad Kalwal; Muhammed Altaf; and Javed Ahmed Zargar a Pakistani citizen.
If you ask me, Rubaiya's kidnapping, to which V P Singh succumed with great alacricity, unfit for a Prime Minister, opened the pandora's box for all future hijacking.
The government should take immediate action to dispose all the death row convicts to the gallows immediately, without any further politicking.

Chain Mail bombing


I wanted to thank all my friends and family who have forwarded chain letters to me from 2002 - 2008 and still continuing it in 2009, Because of your kindness:

* I stopped drinking Coca Cola after I found out that it’s good for removing toilet stains.

* I stopped going to the movies for fear of sitting on a needle infected with AIDS.

* I smell like a wet dog since I stopped using deodorants because they cause cancer, now my friends wont sit beside me anymore.

* I don’t leave my car in the parking lot or any other place and sometimes I even have to walk about 7 blocks for fear that someone will drug me with a perfume sample and try to rob me.

* I also stopped answering the phone for fear that they may ask me to dial a stupid number and then I get a phone bill with calls to Uganda, Pakistan, Singapore and Tokyo.

* I also stopped drinking anything out of a can for fear that I will get sick from the rat feces and urine.

* When I go to parties, I don’t look at any girl, no matter how hot she is, for fear that she will take me to a hotel, drug me then take my kidneys and leave me taking a nap in a bathtub full of ice.

* I also donated all my savings to the Amy Bruce account. A sick girl that was about to die in the hospital about 7,000 times.. (Poor girl! she’s been 7 since 1993)

* Still open to help somebody from Nigeria who wants to use my account to transfer his uncle’s property of $ 100 million, So much for his trustworthy.

The above has come from Thondup.
It seems that we are the only ones who are honoured to receive chain mails to improve the world.
I must warn that most chain mails that are mailed to me come to a dead end.
A few that I do find interesting are posted on the blog but not as chain mails.
So no matter how short a time they give me to pass it on to receive good tidings and money and how much they warn me of impending consequences, if not passed on, they are deleted from may mail box.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Reunion Toronto 19.9.2009

Hi Radhesh & Mr.Lobo,

We had our third reunion last night at Mandarin Restaurant.
Initially, I had eight of us signed up for the occasion and with
our ladies taking part this time the number grew to 16. I was
really excited about this bigger crowd compared to the last one.
But to my disappointment, this expectation was short lived. As
the day Sept.19/09 drew nearer, the original number of 16 began
to shrink smaller and smaller. Eventually only three of us showed
up with our spouse. Nevertheless,we had a great time together
and the dinner was excellent with lots of seafood including large
king crab legs.

Attaching two pictures to you.With me are Merrill Smith and his
wife Francis, Ed Penhairo and his wife Christine, and myself with
my wife Suzie.

Hopefully next time more guys will be more committed.

Willy.Wu (1971).