Monday, December 29, 2014

The 6th List of AAP candidates for Delhi

The Aam Aadmi Party has announced the names of three more candidates for the coming Delhi assembly elections. With these three names, the AAP has so far declared its 62 candidates for the 70-member assembly :
Ajesh Yadav - Badli
Avtar Singh - Kalkaji
Adv Charanji Lal Gupta -  Rohini

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Why the BJP is the new Congress

By Pran Kurup, for for E T
Ever since the BJP was swept to power at the center, there have been two distinct efforts from the party. The first is to put its marketing department on permanent over-drive in a massive image-building exercise while simultaneously distorting the truth and counter any criticism. To a large extent, this effort has been very successful.

Examples of this are visible every day. Just the other day, Mr.Jaitey had the temerity to announce that India is leading the battle against black money. A perfectly tuned headline to reinforce the illusion of change to the ever gullible middle class. The truth is that the BJP has done little about black money, despite making a host of shameful promises including the PM himself promising 15-20 lakhs per citizen after bringing back the black money within 100 days! The reality, though, is a far cry from this smoke screen.

Then there are a whole host of Bollywood-like feel-good buzz lines — Make in India; no more red tape, only red carpet; SMART police; Swach bharath; better utilization of railway stations; sabka vikas sabke saath; and maximum governance minimum government. (This so-called minimum government with 66 ministers is not very different from the 77 in the UPA!). In short, the internal mantra seems to be to crank out one buzz line a day to keep “ache din” seekers at bay and the middle class in good spirits like front benchers at a Bollywood film.

Then there is the entire spin around government officers and bureaucrats coming into work on time. This is the minimum one should expect of them. The spin doctors of BJP are busy attributing credit for this to the PM. Seriously? We need a designer-clothes wearing PM to bring these bureaucrats in line?

As far as investors and other financial experts are concerned, the general consensus seems to be that not much has changed since the BJP government came to power. In fact, there seem to be a consensus that it has been a mere continuation of UPA-II policies. Comparisons to Thatcher and Reagan have stopped, thankfully.

The second effort by the BJP is the concerted effort to consolidate power at the state level. i.e., try to win each state or, if not possible, establish a coalition partner of convenience in the state – a strategy straight out of the Congress playbook.

The BJP tried and failed in UP at the polls. In Maharashtra, it succeeded after dumping long term partners, the Thackeray boys, and shaking hands with the NCP. (If the NCP’s past is any indication, it is only a matter of time before NCP is part of the NDA and Pawar and./or one of his family members is a minister at the center.) In Tamil Nadu, after courting Rajnikanth for months, the party is well on its way to establishing a partnership with Jayalalitha by providing her a safe exit (via an IT department fine). Meanwhile, Madhu Koda seems to be in BJP sights (if not arms) in Jharkhand. In West Bengal, Didi is being arm twisted on a daily basis and it remains to be seen how long before she too falls in line. In Andhra, Naidu is well and truly in the bag.

The Congress party had perfected this approach over decades, using the CBI and other weapons of governance to force the state leadership to fall in line. While the Congress party perfected the art of staying in power, it completely failed to develop the future leadership of the party or establish policies and procedures of intra-party democracy and professional management – the Gandhi family had the final say on all issues by default more than by design. New entrants to the party were all inducted through the hereditary route – sons and daughters of formers ministers. Today, it is paying the price for playing a long-term survival and sustenance game – it has no leadership whatsoever to fall back on, while the Gandhis have gone AWOL.

So clearly, BJP has a two-pronged strategy – one, to make their way into hearts and minds of the people (not through fundamental changes that can positively impact their lives but through gimmicks crafted by marketing charlatans in air-conditioned rooms) and with ample help of an acquiescent media; and two, to consolidate power.  Both of these are being executed with an eye towards longevity and self-preservation, but with no genuine desire to bring about the much ballyhooed fundamental change — change we can actually see and experience rather than just be fed through various channels.

With these moves, the BJP is well on its way to becoming the next Congress. The centralization of power has already happened, as in Indira Gandhi’s time. Dynasty politics is alive and well in the BJP and hear to stay and thrive. What remains is for a culture of sycophancy and complete lack of trust to develop and perpetuate. If the history of the 70s is any indication, Modi will soon be surrounded only by yes men who sing his praise and tell him what he wants to hear. Mr. Modi might be smarter than most people are willing to give him credit for, and survive long enough to see the dawn of “ache din.” Though the signs are far from promising, one can only hope that it is true for the sake of India.
Perhaps the most disheartening trend since the BJP’s rise to power is the complete failure of the media. Reporters are more concerned about having selfies with the PM rather than asking him the tough questions. The media persons missing the kind of access that they enjoyed during the days of the UPA are now desperately currying favors to win over those in power. This is accomplished by aiding and adding fuel to BJP’s hype machine and by not being overly critical of the govt. Others are either looking for new media houses or peddling books and drawing a lesson or two on self-promotion from the BJP’s marketing department.

All of these are troubling trends at a time when India has significant challenges at hand. Do we really need another Congress?
(You can follow Pran’s tweets at htp://

The role of the LG becomes murkier & murkier

Delhi LG must clarify his role in the CNG fitness scam. Unless Mr Najeeb Jung can deny the facts, he must immediately resign. EC must note the fact that current chief secretary has been named by the CBI in its probe.

Aam Aadmi Party demands that the Lieutenant Governor of Delhi Mr Najeeb Jung should immediately clarify whether he tried to hush up the Rs 100 crore CNG fitness scam, in which chief secretary Mr D S Spolia is allegedly involved.

The LG can no longer remain silent following news reports that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in its preliminary investigation has found that Mr Jung had asked the Anti Corruption Branch of Delhi to close the probe involving top bureaucrats of the state government.

Mr Jung should come clean on his role and unless he can prove to the contrary, he should resign given the seriousness of the case and his role in protecting the blatant act of corruption.
Given the role of the LG in protecting the top officers and the involvement of the chief secretary himself in the scam, the Election Commission of India should immediately take note and decide whether free and fair elections would be possible in Delhi with such individuals at the helm of administration. 

The continuing silence of the BJP’s central government and the LG on the indictment of top city bureaucrats by the CBI in what is commonly known as the 2002 CNG fitness scam gives rise to reasonable apprehensions that people of Delhi are being cheated by an unaccountable administration and taxpayers money is being looted without any fear.

The Aam Aadmi Party government had directed the Delhi’s Anti Corruption Wing (ACB) in January this year to provide all the relevant documents to the CBI, when the investigating agency had registered a preliminary enquiry and sought all such documents from the ACB.
It is shocking that indicted bureaucrats are continuing in top administrative positions and the BJP’s central government, which is indirectly controlling Delhi, appears to be turning a blind eye towards the multi-crore scams committed during the Sheila Dikshit government’s tenure.
The AAP challenges the union home ministry and Delhi administration break their silence on following questions :

1) Is it not a fact that the CBI has sent a report to the union home ministry and Delhi’s department of vigilance asking for departmental action and further inquiries against three top bureaucrats, including the present chief secretary ?

2) Is it not a fact that the former Sheila Dikshit government had tried to scuttle a probe into this scam by the Anti-Corruption Branch citing an order from the LG that no inquiry was required ?

3) Is it not a fact that official documents were forged to conceal facts about this scam ?

4) Is it not a fact that the contract for giving CNG fitness certificates to commercial vehicles was fraudulently awarded to a company despite it losing in the tendering process ?

5) Is it not a fact that the LG gave a clean chit to officers against whom the Delhi ACB had registered an FIR in 2012 ?

6) Did the LG send any report to the union home ministry on the status of the case against the officers named in the FIR ?

7) Is it not a fact that the LG ignored the ACB opinion that a case under Prevention of Corruption was made out against these officers and chose to close the probe ?

8) Was the union home ministry aware of the fact that the current chief secretary’s name figured in this scam when it cleared his reappointment to the post on August 27 ?

With so many errors of omission and commission, should the LG be allowed to continue. Mind you, these errors were intentional to please the masters in power. Earlier, it was the Congress and now it is the BJP.

Friday, December 26, 2014

The Sycophant Media - Exposed

The Delhi High Court on Friday set aside a National Human Rights Commission order holding Aam Aadmi Party leader Somnath Bharti guilty of “racial prejudice and unlawful acts” against 12 African women during his controversial midnight raid in Khirki Extension in South Delhi.
A vacation bench of justices S Muralidhar and Manmohan Singh, while setting aside the September 29 ruling of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), also directed it to hear the matter afresh and pass a detailed order by taking into account the evidence lead by Mr. Bharti in his defence.
The AAP leader has also been asked to appear before the Commission on the next date of hearing in January.
The High Court passed the order while disposing of Mr. Bharti’s appeal against its single judge’s decision to dismiss his petition against the NHRC’s September 29 ruling.
Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain and central government standing counsel Jasmeet Singh appeared for the Union of India in the matter.
Mr. Bharti in his appeal, filed through advocate Deepak Khosla, had contended that the single judge had dismissed his plea as “premature” without “allowing fair opportunity to explain the facts of the situation before the NHRC and the legal grounds on which the writ petition was eminently maintainable”.
In his writ petition against the NHRC order, Mr. Bharti had sought that the Commission’s ruling be declared a “nullity” as it was passed without giving him an opportunity to lead evidence in his defence.
Seeks Rs. 100 cr
He had also sought a compensation of Rs 100 crore from the Centre, NHRC and the city government.
Ms. Bharti’s petition had also said that NHRC had prematurely directed the Delhi government to pay Rs 25,000 compensation each to the 12 women, who had allegedly suffered racial abuse, illegal detention, intimidation, abuse, assault and indignity by the AAP leader.
It had also questioned whether NHRC had the jurisdiction to award compensation based on mere ‘prima facie’ findings, without taking the proceedings before it to their full logical conclusion.
While his petition was pending in the High Court, the NHRC had on December 22 accepted Mr. Bharti’s request for hearing on the controversial midnight raid in January next and also directed Delhi government to defer payment of monetary relief of Rs 25,000 to the victims, recommended by it on September 29, for a period of two months. 

The  above verdict by the Delhi High court is a slap on the face of the media, the congress paarty and the BJP who orchestrated at a very High Decibel their demand for Somnath Bharati's resignation. It was nothing but a stunt of the media who found the AAP's way completely foreign and a threat to their way of life

This criminal has been given Z-class security and the CBI is protecting him

Blatant misuse of CBI by the BJP’s central government to save its national president.
A sinister conspiracy is underway to get BJP national president Amit Shah off the hook in the ongoing case of the cold-blooded murders of Sohrabuddin, his wife Kauser Bi and Tulsiram Prajapati who was a crucial eye- witness to their abductions.

Under Mr Ranjit Sinha, the CBI filed an extremely limp submission in response to Amit Shah’s discharge application before the Special CBI judge in Mumbai.

Even under the new CBI director the CBI has fashioned its arguments to provide Amit Shah escape passage from the ongoing criminal trial.

On 15 Decemeber, the CBI counsel argued for just 15 minutes in response to three days of vigorous arguments by Amit Shah’s legal team.
CBI has till date not appointed a special public prosecutor in the Sohrabuddin-Tulsiram case.
CBI didn’t oppose the permanent exemption granted to Amit Shah by the CBI court.

The trenchant refusal of the BJP government to sack Ranjit Sinha from the post of CBI director despite damning evidence of corruption against him had baffled many.

Now the information procured by the Aam Aadmi Party reveals that under Ranjit Sinha the CBI presented an extremely weak case against former Gujarat minister of state for home, Amit Shah, the prime accused in the killings of Sohrabuddin and Tulsiram Prajapati before the Special CBI court in Mumbai.

In its submission before the court the CBI sang a different tune than it had been maintaining all along. Earlier in its chargesheets the CBI had called Shah as the lynchpin of the conspiracy to eliminate the three victims. The CBI had also accused Shah of being the kingpin of an extortion racket he operated in league with certain police officers of the Gujarat police and gangsters like Sohrabuddin.

The killing of Sohrabuddin was a result of the extortion business run by Shah, as per the CBI chargesheets. CBI had also accused Shah of ordering the killings of kauser Bi and Tuliram Prajapati who were crucial eyewitnesses to the abduction and illegal detention of Sohrabuddin. Shah had allegedly shuffled the police officers around just days before Prajapati was gunned down. The transfers were affected so that Shah’s henchmen could be deployed in critical position from where then they carried out the killing of Prajapati who was threatening to reveal the full truth.

The CBI at every stage of the investigation and at every forum had asserted that the conspiracy began and ended with Shah. The agency also accused him of obstructing the investigation and destroying critical evidence. Shah had allegedly ordered the abduction of a crucial witness while the former was in judicial custody. To support its case the CBI had recorded statements of several eyewitnesses which include senior Gujarat police officers, businessmen and members of the Sohrabuddin gang.

Some of these statements were recorded before a judicial magistrate making them admissible in a court of law. Besides the agency had cited documentary and circumstantial evidence like Shah’s cellphone records. 

A few months back Shah filed a 150 page long discharge application in the CBI court. One would have reasonably expected the CBI to vigorously present its case against Shah and oppose his application through vehement arguments. In the first and second weeks of December the counsels for Amit Shah argued for 3 days and made a case that Shah should be discharged without facing the trial.

In response the CBI counsel argued for just 15 minutes. The essence of CBI’s arguments was that the credibility and veracity of statements of witnesses cannot be decided at this stage and the same is the matter of trial when witnesses will depose before the trial judge.

Shockingly, the CBI didn’t spell out the central role of Shah in the conspiracy that the agency had earlier made in its chargesheets and status reports submitted before the Supreme Court. The CBI presented Shah like any other accused in the case and not the prime conspirator. The agency didn’t even lay out the body of evidence against Shah.

The CBI arguments were merely technical and superficial in nature. The conduct of the agency raises serious questions about its independence autonomy. A wishy-washy approach against Shah leads to suspicion of an insidious conspiracy between the govt and the CBI to let Shah off the hook. The agency has not even appointed a special public prosecutor in the case. 

· This case raises very serious questions on the functioning of CBI

· It is being misused and manipulated to erase the criminal past of BJP’s top leaders
· CBI autonomy has been a matter of fierce debate in the country during past few years.
· The AAP will raise the issue at every forum to prevent the country’s premier investigating agency from being compromised.

200 Mahadalits convert to Christianity in Bihar, Chief Minister seeks probe

After Bhagalpur and Munger, it was turn of Bodh Gaya where in a village 200 Mahadalits converted to Christianity on Christmas Day. Chief Minister Jitan Manjhi, who himself is from the community and from the same district, has sought a probe into the event. 

About 200 Mahadalits from 40 families of Atiya village under Pararia panchayat of Bodh Gaya block converted to Christianity on Thursday at a Christmas function organised in a local school by a priest, Brother Rajkishore. 

In 2008 too, 35 families from the same village had converted to Christianity 

The villagers have reportedly said that they have converted to Christianity for their growth and betterment in life. However, village head Munia Devi said she has no knowledge about the conversions, “though, a function was organised in the village school on Thursday”. 

A local official said that the villagers like Dhanesh Manjhi and Bhanesh Manjhi have said that they had participated in the function on Christmas day to express their faith in Christianity like other villagers without any “allurement, fear or favour”. 

Meanwhile, Mr. Manjhi, who was in his village in Gaya district on Thursday, has sought a report on the incident from the district magistrate. “I’ve asked the officials to look into it whether it was forced conversion out of any pressure or allurement or on their own,” he said. 

“If they have converted on their own there is nothing wrong in it,” he said while adding that a high-level probe could be ordered if there was any need of it. 

Earlier, similar reports of conversion of Mahadalit families to Christianity had come from Bhagalpur ad Munger districts of the State. However, when officials visited those villages to ascertain the facts, the villagers had denied their “conversion to any other religion” and had said they have merely expressed their faith in Jesus Christ for “betterment and growth in their life”. 

On one hand, the BJP government and the Sangh Parivar is trying to reconvert Muslims to Hinduism through "Ghar Wapasi" as they claim and on the other hand Hindu's are converting to Christianity. Is this not a slap on the face of these champions of Hindusim?

I have said earlier, unless we remove the warts in Hindusim wherein  some consider themselves more equal than others, just on the basis of birth, these conversions will occur.

Two things are the main reaons for conversions.
Poverty and discrimination caused by birth in SC, ST.
Now that the BJP has got a stunning majority in the Lok sabha elections they should  take stringent action of the people who are behind this discrimination, irrespective of stature or party affiliations. To improve the economic conditions, corruption should be attacked on war footing. But will they do it. 

The BJP tried horse trading in MLAs in the Delhi assembly, offering 5 crores per MLA.
They will be making similar offers in J & K where there is a hung assembly.
The BJP received anything between Rs 10000 to 15000 crores from the Ambanis and Adanis to finance the parliamentary elections. Naturally they will have to be paid back. 

They must have taken another Rs 8000 to 10000 crores in the Haryana and Maharashtra  elections and a similar amount in the Jharkhand & J & K elections. These too have to be paid back.

With so much payback, what money will the government have to lift the condition of the poor who are converting because the Christian Missionaries treat them as equals and help them with education and  training to make a decent living.

Unless the government changes its policies, these conversions will continue. 

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

AAPs 5th List of Candidates

The Aam Aadmi Party announced the names of eight more candidates for the coming Delhi assembly elections.
With today’s announcement, the AAP has so far declared its 59 candidates for the 70-member assembly.
Please find below the names of candidates and their constituencies


1. Arvind Kejriwal    New Delhi
2. Rajendra Gautan    Seemapuri
3. Fateh Singh        Gokulpuri
4. S D Sharma        Ghonda
5. Kailash Ghelot    Najafgarh
6. Amanatullah Khan    Okhla
7. Rajendra Dabas    Mundka
Naresh Balyan        Uttam Nagar

3 National Parties have declared a 517% increase in donations since FY 2012-13; 90% donations from corporate/ business sectors, BSP has no known sources of income, BJP has not filed the report with ECI

 Date: 24th Dec 2014

                                      Press Release                                           

                Analysis of Donations Received by National Parties – FY 2013-14

-          Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is the only National Party which is yet to submit its donations report to the ECI
-          90% of donations to National Parties from corporates/ business houses
-          The total donations of INC, NCP and CPI during FY 2013-14 increased by Rs 62.69 crores, an increase of 517%, from the previous financial year, 2012-13
-          Donations to CPM reduced from Rs 3.81 crores during FY 2012-13 to Rs 2.097 crores during FY 2013-14 (45% decrease)
-          A total of Rs 3.81 crores (84%) was donated by known party members of INC and Rs 1.82 crores (89%) was donated by known party members of CPM

On the declaration of donations by the National Parties, Prof. Jagdeep Chhokar, Founder-Trustee of ADR, has stated, “Ninety per cent of the donations being from corporates shows the increasing hold of the corporate sector on political parties which is somewhat disconcerting. The ruling party not submitting its donation report is not a good sign as it possibly indicates a lack of respect for integrity of institutions which is not healthy for a democracy.”

Political parties are required to submit their contributions report before the due date for furnishing a return of their income for FY 2013-14 which was 31st October, 2014. ECI received the donations report of BSP on 13th Sept,’14, of NCP on 17th Sept,’14, of CPI on 23rd Sept,’14 and of CPM and INC on 30th Sept,’14. BSP declared that the party did not receive any donations above Rs 20,000 during FY 2013-14, as it has declared in the past.

Executive Summary

I.            Number of donors contributing above Rs 20,000 to National Parties from all over India (FY 2013-14)
a.       The total amount of donations above Rs 20,000 received by National Political Parties during FY 2013-14 is calculated from the donations report submitted to the Election Commission annually.
b.      The total amount of donations above Rs 20,000 declared by the National Parties was Rs. 76.93 crores, from 881 donations.
c.       On an average, INC received Rs 11.70 lakhs per unique donor*, NCP: Rs 1 crore, CPI: Rs 3.23 lakhs and CPM: Rs 4.03 lakhs per unique donor.

Total number of donations
Total number of unique donors (a)
Total amount contributed (b)
Average amount of donation per unique donor (b/a)
Rs 59,58,37,728
 (~Rs 59.58 crores)
Rs 11,70,605
(~ Rs 11.70 lakhs)
Rs 14,02,00,000
 (~Rs 14.02 crores)
Rs 1,00,14,286
(~ Rs 1 crore)
Rs 1,22,81,544
 (~Rs 1.22 crores)
Rs 3,23,199
(~ Rs 3.23 lakhs)
Rs 2,09,74,666
 (~Rs 2.09 crores)
Rs 4,03,359
(~ Rs 4.03 lakhs)
Rs 76.93 crores
Rs 12.54 lakhs
                                           *Unique donor: A donor who might or might not have made multiple donations during FY 2013-14
 II.            Comparison of donations received by National Parties during FY 2012-13 and FY 2013-14
a.       Donations to INC increased from Rs 11.72 crores during FY 2012-13 to Rs 59.58 crores during FY 2013-14 (408% increase).
b.      In FY 2012-13, donations declared by BJP was more than the aggregate declared by the INC, NCP, CPI and CPM during FY 2013-14. BJP had declared a total of Rs 83.19 crores received above Rs 20,000 during FY 2012-13.
                                        Inline image 1

III.            Top 3 donors to National Parties
                                                     Inline image 2

a.       Bharti Group’s Satya Electoral Trust donated the maximum amount of Rs 36.5 crores to INC followed by A.V.Patil Foundation which donated Rs 5 crores and Bharat Forge Ltd. which donated Rs 2.50 crores. It is to be noted that none of the above 3 donors donated to INC during FY 2012-13.
b.      The top 3 donors to NCP were Satya Electoral Trust (Rs 4 crores), followed by Shirke Infrastructure (Rs 2 crores) and Serum Institute of India Ltd. (Rs 1.50 crores). It is to be noted that none of the above 3 donors donated to NCP during FY 2012-13.
c.    Donations to CPI were by means of collection, levy and membership fees. Maximum amount was from Gurudas Dasgupta (Rs 25 lakhs) followed by Andhra Pradesh State Council, CPI (Rs 14.96 lakhs) and Kerala State Council, CPI (Rs 11.53 lakhs).
IV.            Donors from Corporates/ business sectors Vs. Individual donors
a.       35 donations from corporate/business sectors amounting to Rs 55.02 crores were made to INC while 708 individual donors donated Rs 4.56 crores.
b.      13 donations from corporate/ business sectors aggregating to Rs 14 crores were made to NCP while 2 individual donors donated Rs 2 lakhs.
c.    While 4 donations to CPI were made from Unions and a Memorial Trust which aggregated to Rs 2.75 lakhs, CPM received a total of Rs 5 lakhs from 4 corporate/ business houses during FY 2013-14.

                                                                                             Inline image 3
V.            Donations by party members for FY 2013-14
a.       A total of Rs 3.81 crores (84%) was donated by known party members of INC. Top donation was made by Shri Hassen Lyngdoh (Rs 66.37 lakhs) followed by Shri Mukul Sangma (Rs 10 lakhs) and Shri W.H.Pala (Rs 7.02 lakhs).
b.      A total of Rs 1.82 crores (89%) was donated by known party members of CPM. Top 3 donations of Rs 9.60 lakhs each was made by Shri Jarna Das followed by Shri K N Balagopal and Shri P Rajeev.
c.       There were no donations above Rs 20,000 from known party members of NCP whereas CPI members declared donations collected via contributions and levy.
VI.            State-wise donations to National Parties
a.   A total of Rs 45.49 crores was donated to the National Parties from Delhi by both corporates and individuals together followed by Rs 18.12 crores from Maharashtra and Rs 3.01 crores from Gujarat.
b.      Of the donations received, INC received maximum donations from Delhi (Rs 39.05 crores), as did CPI (Rs 54.6 lakhs) and CPM (Rs 1.88 crores) while NCP received maximum donations from Maharashtra (Rs 8.02 crores).
                                                         Inline image 4

VII.            Incomplete disclosure of information in the donations report
a.       INC has not followed the format prescribed by the ECI in declaring its donations details. The column for declaring PAN details of donors is not provided in the contributions reports. Without the PAN details, it would be difficult to link the donors against their donations and hence trace the money trail.
b.      A total of Rs 2.88 lakhs was declared by INC as an outstanding amount thereby not declaring the mode of payment of these funds.
c.       A total of Rs 17.40 lakhs was declared by the National Parties without disclosing mode of payment of these donations.
d.      A total of Rs 6.66 crores was declared by INC, CPI and CPM as amounts received by cheque/DD without disclosing corresponding cheque/DD numbers, name of the bank/ branch on which the cheque was drawn, etc. which would aid in tracking the donations. These incomplete details account for 9% of the total donations received in cheque/DD/ fund transfer.

Recommendations of ADR

a.       The Supreme Court gave a judgment on September 13, 2013 declaring that no part of a candidate’s affidavit should be left blank. Similarly, no part of the Form 24A submitted by political parties providing details of donations above Rs 20,000 should be blank.
b.      There is ambiguity in cash donations declared by INC which amounted to Rs 1.578 crores in FY 2013-14. While CPI has declared that the party’s donations by individuals were by means of collections/ levy/ memberships, INC has not made any such remarks though it is part of the prescribed format of the Election Commission of India. Thus, there is a need for clarity in large amounts of cash donations by individuals.   
c.       Full details of all donors should be made available for public scrutiny under the RTI. Some countries where this is done include Bhutan, Nepal, Germany, France, Italy, Brazil, Bulgaria, the US and Japan. In none of these countries is it possible for 75% of the source of funds to be unknown, but at present it is so in India. 
d.   The National and regional political parties must provide all information on their finances under the Right to Information Act. This will go a long way to strengthen political parties, elections and democracy. For more information, please refer to

For details of 'Multiple donations made by top donors', cash donations to National Parties and list of top donors to the parties, please refer to the document attached with the release.

Media and Journalist Helpline

+91 80103 94248
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National Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms

+91 8826479910

Prof Jagdeep Chhokar
IIM Ahmedabad (Retd)
Founder Member National Election Watch, Association for Democratic

Prof Trilochan Sastry
IIM Bangalore
Founder Member,
National Election Watch,
Association for Democratic Reforms

Association for Democratic Reforms
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Watch the milk that you drink

R S Khanna

With India now celebrating November 26 as National Milk Day to commemorate Verghese Kurien’s birthday, it’s high time the adulteration of milk and milk products was treated as a grave offence. Indeed, food adulteration may be one of the world’s oldest illegal professions.

Recently, the discovery of hydrogen peroxide in milk caused uproarious scenes in the Telangana Assembly. In another instance, detergent and hydrogen peroxide were detected in loose milk.
Neither hydrogen peroxide nor detergent either expand the volume of milk or boost its quality.
As adulterants, both chemicals act as preservatives to extend the shelf life of milk. 

This is cheaper than the practice of chilling raw milk as soon as possible before despatch to the main dairy plant for processing and packaging.

Taking cognisance of such cases, the Supreme Court reprimanded the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India for categorising milk adulteration as an offence that attracts a minor penalty of six months’ imprisonment under the Food Safety Act 2006.

The Supreme Court sought amendments to the Act that would provide life imprisonment, observing that many milk samples were laced with “white paint, caustic soda, detergents, shampoo, urea, starch and blotting paper”.
Earlier, the Supreme Court noted that the government was taking the issue lightly. 

Rather than waiting for a calamity to occur, the Court said “the Centre must come out with the necessary amendment to the Act to curb adulteration. We hope the government will take appropriate decisions during the winter session of Parliament”. 

The Court wondered whether the government was waiting for the culprits to adulterate milk with cyanide.

Mass consumption

It is imperative to comprehend the reasons for the malpractice to combat it. For instance, cases of adulteration surface during summer when production dips but the availability and consumption of milk and milk products is, yet, high. 

Moreover, the scourge of synthetic milk production is highest in areas with higher milk processing capacity than the marketable surplus of milk. 

The number of factories processing milk and their total processing capacities are very high in Haryana, eastern Rajasthan and western Uttar Pradesh, with maximum adulteration occurring in these areas. 

The most notorious areas for synthetic milk production are Bulandshahr in UP and the Mewat region of Rajasthan and Haryana, as well as Kurukshetra in Haryana.

Some years ago, reports were rife about baby milk foods being adulterated with melamine (a protein-like contaminant) in China. Use of the adulterated baby food caused the deaths of some infants while almost 3,00,000 fell gravely ill. 

The Chinese government cracked down and at least three persons were executed.
In India, speedy justice is never delivered. It is rare that those involved in food adulteration are severely punished, leave alone being given capital punishment. 

In 1998, mustard oil was adulterated with cheaper argemone oil. Scores of people in Delhi and elsewhere across north India were afflicted with dropsy after consuming the adulterated oil.
But apparently, no serious action was taken against the perpetrators. 

Stop the adulteration

All stakeholders should stand up to stop this nefarious practice.
If dairy plants stop accepting adulterated milk, the practice will wane. Most private dairy plants lack their own milk collection network, depending heavily on middlemen for milk supplies via road tankers. 

Often, the middlemen practice adulteration. It is common knowledge that a milk-like substance is produced by mixing urea, vegetable oil and sugar. Milk producers selling 5 to 10 litres daily don’t possess the wherewithal to make synthetic milk. 

Farmers also do not adulterate milk with anything except water. It is the middlemen — suppliers who sell milk in large volumes of 10,000 litres or more — who indulge in adulteration. It is therefore important that dairy owners establish their own network to collect milk directly from farmers.

Private dairies should replicate the cooperative milk procurement model by creating rural networks of milk producers that act as self-help groups. The private sector baulks from this cumbersome exercise because of the large investments involved — the purchase of electronic milk-testing machines, electronic weighing systems as well as chilling and transportation equipment.

But if this is accomplished, the milk collected directly from farmers will be qualitatively better, unadulterated and cheaper. Above all, milk producers will be at the centre of the system — not middlemen. Verghese Kurien would surely have approved.

The writer is the director of Kwality Ltd. The views are personal

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Fisherman's story retold.

One day a fisherman passed through a market selling perfumes and essences.
The poor man became unconscious from smelling some much perfumes.
A crowd gathered around him.
They tried different methods to revive him.
They sprinkled water on his face, rubbed his nose and face, and massaged him but to no effect.
One man who knew the fisherman passed by.
He asked the crowd to move away as he knew how to revive him.
He brought the fisherman's bag which was lying some feet away and put it near the fisherman's nose.
Lo and behold !
The fisherman got  up and said,"take me away from here. I don't know how I came here by mistake.
Thank God, you have saved me."

For years, people have become so used to corruption, cheating, loot, scams, crimes, rapes and injustice that it has all become a part and parcel of their lives.
People have become used to these.
When some unselfish Kejriwal who loves his country talks of truth and honesty, people do not believe him.
Like the fisherman, people hate him, they think him mad.
"Is this possible?"
The politician, police, businessman, government babu can loot as they want.They are our people.
It is very difficult to first understand yourself and then to make these people understand that there are other countries and governments like Denmark, Singapore, Canada, Norway etc where they is an honest system of government.True Democracies, where life is like a true perfume and religion is a personal affair where each person respects the views of others, Where the government gives you money if a child is born.
Each child gets compulsory education.
Everyone gets the best health facilities,Where if a person is not employed,the government gives him an unemployment allowance to sustain him.
Where justice prevails.
Where the old and the children are respected by all citizens.
Where the roads are clean, houses are well made and beautiful and life is happy.
Rise, countrymen, rise.
Let us get rid of the years of this slave mentality.
Come let us attain true freedom.
Let us have a corruption free country where the politician behaves like a common man, travels by metro or bus and goes to work like a common man and serves the country.
The politician is supposed to serve the people and he should do that.
If the people are the rulers then they should get the true Lokpal, swaraj, Full NOTA to remove corrupt
officers.The police and officers should be honest people who should help the people without any differentiation.
People should truly love each other.
Each child should good education - free.
Women should have full security.
Everyone should get excellent health service.
Justice should be swift and reasonably priced.
Even the poorest should get reasonable employment and lead a happy life.
Come let us make India an honest and proud country of which our future generations will be proud.

In The Dock - Both BJP & Congress

In The Dock

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) levels charges of direct conflict of interest and impropriety against cabinet minister Ravi Shankar Prasad (BJP) and former minister Manish Tewari (Congress)

The full text of the release by the AAP
1)      Aam Aadmi Party is revealing the direct conflict of interest of union telecom minister Mr Ravi Shankar Prasad and demands that he should immediately resign, failing which the Prime Minister must remove him from telecom ministry:
Facts of the case: 

Union telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad is in receipt of retainership fees from a company of Reliance group (Fine Tech Corporation Private Limited). We are enclosing the invoices raised by Ravi Shankar Prasad on the company of Reliance group from April 2013 to March 2014, total amount billed Rs 84 lakh. Payment is in the form of retainership fee. It appears to be a token of gratification being offered. (We are attaching the receipts with this press release) 

He also held the law portofolio from May 26 this year till November 10 along with telecom. 
Reliance connection: Fine Tech Corporation Private Limited is a company of the Reliance group with its corporate office atReliance Corporate Park, 5TTC Industrial Area, Thane Belapur Road,Ghansoli, Navi Mumbai-400701. It has three directors: Mr.Shankar Natarajan, Mr.Jaishanker Prasad Kanhaiya Lal Bansal, Mr.Rajagopal Subramanian. These three are also directors in various other companies of Reliance Group. 

Reliance is a major telecom player and many questions have been raised on Reliance’s improprieties in the 4G matter.
The department of telecom has strongly refuted the Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG’s) observation that Mukesh Ambani-controlled Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) and Nahata family-owned Infotel Broadband Services Pvt. Ltd, a company that was subsequently acquired by RIL, were shown undue favours, resulting in a loss of more than Rs.20,000 crore to the government.

Is the current minister of telecom (Ravi Shankar Prasad) not sitting over a notice that needs to be issued to Reliance Jio with respect to the 4G case. ?

After the Supreme Court notice to DoT on Mr.Prashant Bhushan's case (in April 2014) and other complaints filed to DoT/PM & CVC by other persons - DoT officials prepared a notice to Reliance Jio asking for reasons on why its contract should not be cancelled ?  

Why is  the minister for telecom Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad sitting over this notice for the past three months and not allowing DoT's Access Service Division to issue notice to Reliance ?

·         Mr Ravi Shankar Prasad must immediately tender his resignation from the telecom ministry as he cannot deal with any office whose subject matter is of business interest to Reliance.

·          It is a clear case of conflict of interest and gross impropriety.

·         Before becoming a union minister, Mr.Ravi Shankar Prasad was a member of the JPC from March 2011 onwards, which examined  matters relating to allocation and pricing of telecom licences and spectrum.

2)      MANISH TEWARI                                                

He was a union minister of state with an independent charge in the Congress-led UPA government from October 2012 till May 2014 : 

He was in a retainership agreement with the RIL even during his tenure as a union minister. 

When his contract for retainership expired on 30th June 2012, Manish Tewari wrote a letter to Mr.Parimal Nathwani (RS member and senior functionary in Reliance) to get his contract extended till 30th June 2015. The contract got extended till 30th June 2014.

We are enclosing the letter written by Manish Tewari to Piramal Natwani requesting for renewal of contract. Also enclosed is the extension of contract letter by RIL.

Payment is in the form of retainership fee. It appears to be a token of gratification being offered. 

Manish Tewari – I & B minster – Reliance has serious interest and holdings in I&B industry.

 Mr Tewari was also a member of JPC which probed the 2G telecom scam :

 These two cases give rise to the following important issues : 

                                i.            Such former ministers and MPs have been/are in various committees in which are of interest to these companies (Reliance group).

                              ii.            They speak in parliament on issues of interest to these companies (Reliance group).

                            iii.            They shouldn’t be doing any legal work while holding high offices. Also, they must recuse themselves from a public office which deals with the business interest of these companies (Reliance group).

                            iv.            If these ministers have dealt with these cases – it amounts to corruption/gross conflict of interest/gross impropriety.

                              v.            Our MPs will notify the Ethics committee of the parliament to take up this matter.