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Showing posts from August, 2010

OUR MPs ALWAYS HAVE A CONSENSUS ON PERSONAL GAINS AND DIFFERENCES ON NATIONAL IMPERATIVES!

Recently, a much awaited bill with respect to our honorable members of Parliament was given a nod! The bill seeking a three-fold hike in MPs’ salaries from Rs 16,000 to Rs 50,000 and increase of 200 per cent in their allowances was passed. Besides this, the daily allowance of every MP when he or she attended Parliament during session was doubled; constituency allowance and office expense allowance also saw a two-fold growth; and conveyance allowance saw a four-fold growth. In all, this hike entails an annual expenditure of Rs 146 crores and an expenditure of Rs 118 crore on payment of arrears! However, a lot has been deliberated and written on this issue, and many arguments and counter arguments have been put forth with respect to this bill. Without getting into that argument, what I found most interesting was the manner in which the MPs built their consensus on this particular bill. It was amazing to observe how everyone got united, seemingly forgetting their personal and political d

HOUSEWIVES ARE AN INVALUABLE UNPAID RESOURCE AND DEFINITELY NOT UNPRODUCTIVE!

At least the apex court felt the need to slam the administration over clubbing housewives and women engaged in domestic work along with the categories containing prostitutes, beggars and prisoners within the Census; the court stated that such categorisation of women is totally irrational and insensitive. I kept wondering that in an era where even the slightest of gender discrimination is a highly inflammable and potent fuel for the media, activists and the civil society alike, how was it that such a slap on the face of the housewife (the Census categorization) had gone unnoticed – or should I say deliberately overlooked? Is it that in our progressive society today, the housewife has lost her identity or is it that her definition has been reduced to the manner in which she gets portrayed in TRP hungry daily soaps? Is it that she is being taken too much for granted? According to the Census, the logic behind clubbing housewives along with beggars and prostitutes stems from the fact that

SERVICE PROVIDERS or RENT SEEKERS?!

When over 3,200 tourists were left stranded in Leh after a major cloudburst, a few private airline companies were planning to capitalise on the opportunity! Taking advantage of the situation, these airlines not only jacked up their fares for almost all flights flying out of Leh, but also viewed this crisis as an opportunity to squeeze the maximum from the already troubled tourists. What can be more shameful for a country that boasts about its service sector and weaves dreams around it? Airline companies knew it very well that there was no way out for these stranded people other than to accept their offer if they wanted to escape the deadly fury of nature. The flash floods had already killed around 150 people and over 500 had gone missing. Leave aside providing medical aid and discounted tickets (for those who couldn’t afford them), these airlines adopted a reverse method and demanded a higher fare holding the tourists at ransom! Going by media reports, two specific airlines jacked up

IT IS NOW FOOLISH TO COMPARE INDIA TO CHINA. RATHER, IT WOULD BE MORE SENSIBLE TO LEARN A LESSON OR TWO FROM THE CHINESE!

Recently, in terms of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), China toppled Japan to secure the second position globally, after US. In fact, China was very close to achieving this feat the last year itself, but fell short at the last moment. As per reports, if China keeps growing at its current pace, then by 2025, it should topple the US to become the largest economy of the world. Who could have imagined that an economy, which was languishing till about three decades back, has put itself in such formidable position? What is even more amazing is the fact that at a point in time when the world economy is still recovering from the global recession, China kept on growing. The growth has been such that in 2005, it first overtook Britain and France; then in 2007, it surpassed Germany to secure the position of the third largest economy of the world. It is not that the growth did not bring in iniquitous distribution of wealth; but then, at the same time, China has managed to pull out a staggering 600 mi