OPINION

Monthly Archives: APRIL 2016


Stand Up India, after Swachh Bharat, Make in India, Digital India. Who is accountable?
22.04.16 - preet k s bedi

Even his worst critics will not accuse Modi of not having tried hard; some say he works for over 18 hours a day. And yet, from the aam aadmi to the captains of industry, most are dissatisfied with the quality and speed of change. While we could quibble about his vision or strategy, there is a bigger concern. 
 
If someone like Modi has not been able to re-energize the system, is there really hope for any sort of radical change? 
 
The ubiquitous ‘system’ created by the British to perpetuate their rule has stood its ground unchanged for over 70 years. The need for control, the love of process and disdain for result, the titles and the acronyms, the formality and the language and even the same green paper with a vertical margin. 
 
During this period, the world outside has transformed many times over. Such is the level of integration today that deficient rainfall ...
  


The decline of Punjab: Blame it on its past and present rulers
21.04.16 - Mohan Guruswamy

Mohan Guruswamy (pictured below), Chairman, Centre for Policy Alternatives, New Delhi, has touched the raw nerve of Punjab in his article which appeared in Scroll.in on April 20, 2016. We are reproducing the same in toto with the hope that there will be a healthy and serious debate in Punjab's intellectual, social and political circles on the points raised in the article.
 
The Rs 20,000 crore-foodgrain scam is just another step downhill for the state that was once projected as a role model.
 
There was a time when Punjab was India’s model state. It was number one in almost every field. But for several decades now, it has been saddled with corrupt and inept governments. From being a role model for other states, Punjab has now become a disaster zone and a national burden. Now the Badal family-headed Akali Dal, ruling the state in alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party, has taken ...
  


Why Baba Ramdev Would Do Well To Go Into Vanvaas
07.04.16 - Swami Agnivesh

Ramdev shocks me. Truly. Utterly. Un-bearably. His saffron shocks me. It makes his words all the more shocking. Saffron is the colour either of self-sacrifice or of inspired bravery. He seems light years away from both. It is blatant cowardice to say one would love to cut off the heads of millions of people but for the small inconvenience that stands in the way. There is, he laments, that irksome thing called the rule of law. He could get into trouble if he ventures to harvest a few million human heads. That, says Ramdev, chokes the heroic expression of his sterling patriotic zeal. 
 
Ramdev’s version of patriotism, please note, is choked by the law. That is to say, it is unlawful. Refraining from scandalously unlawful lusts and longings only due to fear of unpleasant consequences is cowardice. Only Ramdev can enlighten us about the meeting point between cowardice and self-sacrifice: The ...
  


India’s finest legislation. Aborted by the political class and bureaucracy out of fear. And by you and me out of apathy
06.04.16 - preet k s bedi

1984 Delhi, 2733 dead. Only 49 convicted for murder/  2002 Gujarat, 1260 dead.  Only 225 convictions/  2013 Muzaffarnagar, 63 dead. All five judgments so far resulted in acquittal./ 2016 Haryana, 28 dead. Reports suggest police is unable to find witnesses willing to testify against their biradari.
 
The narrative has remained unchanged for decades. Tension builds up against a minority group; suddenly there is a spark and hell breaks loose. One of the first casualties is the formal chain of command. Cops and officials simply disappear or are mysteriously rendered ineffective. Once the chain of command has snapped, the riot is in full swing.
 
The fact that nothing at all has changed over the years is proof, if ever that was needed that whatever may be its advantages or disadvantages, the current  system of policing and administration ain’t working, and almost never in difficult times when security is most needed.
 
The problem in all ...
  



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