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Showing posts from November, 2007

The compulsions of a coalition would exist, but we need to still productively engage in positive political pluralism and set an example for the world!

A few days back, at the fourth International Conference on Federalism, the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, voiced his concerns over the dangers posed by narrow political interests (on account of regional politics) that are coming in the way of the larger national interest. No doubt, our honourable Prime Minister has learnt the harsh realities of coalition politics the hard way, which was evident from his speech. In fact, a classic metaphor of such coalition compulsions was evident in the manner the Centre has been handling the Nandigram issue. The Centre’s stance amply vindicates its sheer helplessness on account of its dependence on CPI(M). All that the Centre did was to send one battalion of CRPF from Dhanbad...And that’s it! As the CPI(M) cadres continued with their victory procession and made sure that the entire Nandigram was reconverted into a red bastion, the CRPF contingent was kept strangled at Tamluk. The reason why something like this happened is no secret, as it is all

For the people of Pakistan, the last 60 years has been a state of perpetual emergency!

On November 3, 2007, it was as if history was repeating in Pakistan. General Pervez Musharraf once again imposed emergency in Pakistan – suspended the constitution, dismissed the Pakistan Chief Justice, Iftikhar Chaudhury, along with seven other judges (this being the second time in his tenure as a President), ordered troops to seize the equipment of independent television stations and also ordered for some popular leaders’ house arrest! Sequence of events beginning March 9, 2007, (with the arrest of Iftikar Chaudhury, followed by Lal Masjid siege on July 10, 2007, Supreme Court reinstating Justice Chaudhury, challenging Musharraf’s power on July 20, 2007, Nawaz Sharif’s arrest at Islamabad airport, after his eight-year exile, killing of 139 people in Benazir Bhutto’s procession in Karachi), indicated that a state of emergency in Pakistan was on the cards. In fact, for more than half of the period, since Pakistan separated from India and became an independent state, it has been under

To make India democratic & politics de-criminalaised, allow election voting through sms

As I watched with excitement the finals of Zee Sa Re Ga Ma, glued to the TV sets at a friend’s house, what struck me was the massive number of votes that each of the finalists got. It was a mind numbing figure that crossed a whopping 10,00,00,000!!! Yes! Those were over ten crore votes that were polled! While my friends debated with excitement at how Bengalis reaching the finals of any such show were bound to win due to the massive way they vote, I couldn’t help but wonder at the irony around the fact that these are the same Bengalis who allow their votes to be rigged election after election in West Bengal and allow muscle men to dominate and snatch away their rights to what Bengalis love doing most – vote and debate. After all, Bengal was amongst the first in the world to bring in communism through a democratic process. Though the situation is better in most other states, yet rigging and non-participation in the electoral process remain India’s biggest problems. It is because we belie

If the government fails to unshackle the imposed market and economic restrictions in agriculture....

If the government fails to unshackle the imposed market and economic restrictions in agriculture, then the day is not far when we would end up farming more corpses than crops ! ! ! At our institute (The Indian Institute of Planning and Management), since its very inception (1973), we have always emphasised the need for the study of marketing. So much so that for the entire two years of the rigorous course, from day one till the day the students are bid farewell, marketing is taught to every student, irrespective of whether the student opted for finance or human resource or technology as a specialisation stream. In fact at IIPM, marketing has been a compulsory specialisation, because not only do we believe, but also propagate the philosophy that ‘Business’ is nothing else but ‘Marketing’. No business can survive in this world – however much the product might be world-class – unless it is marketed well or gets the right kind of avenues to make it marketable. Interestingly, our nation p