Skip to main content


Showing posts from May, 2013

Who is the terrorist here? Is it the Naxalite? Or the neta who does not give the poor food to eat?

Every time Naxalites strike, the state wakes up to the problem of their menace. Yes, it’s true that today, the actions of Naxalites are looking similar to those of terrorists and I have often condemned their actions in the past. And in a democracy, such killings can’t be justified. Yet, let’s get into some facts. In Chattisgarh, more people get killed of hunger and curable diseases than gunfights. That’s actually putting it mildly. Forget hunger and the poor, more state CRPF jawans posted in the region get killed by mosquito bites than by Maoists! Yes, that’s the irony. In the last few years, more have died of malaria than have been killed on duty. These figures do tell a big story. Of course, on one hand it tells the pitiable story of our CRPF jawans. The other side of the story is the story of India’s reality today. The story of how we neglect about 60 percent of our population and condemn them to die of hunger, curable diseases and mosquito bites. That’s roughly about 650 milli

IPL - caught at silly point!

The IPL typically represents media frenzy, glamour and excessive of vices that supersede the sporting domain of the event; the event is taking cricket lovers for a ride as the glitterati topple the sporting paradigm of the game of cricket. IPL is packaged in a way that even those population segments that might not be hardcore cricket fans are glued to their television sets allured by the clamour of celebrities, glamour and the hysteria that goes with it. The money-spinning potboiler that the IPL is, it undoubtedly speaks of a very efficient and hot business model with all the right proportions of the marketing mix embedded in it. But with the largesse comes the cost. And the cost is the game of cricket itself. The unearthing of betting scandals, players’ complicity in spot-fixing, underworld kingpins’ involvement and monetary misappropriation are all turning the premise of what was supposed to be a perfectly innocent game – the game of the gentlemen. The IPL model follows (or at l

From Aashiqui 2 and 25 years of QSQT to Amitabh Bachchan and 100 years of Bollywood!

Uff! How vividly I remember that summer day – during the start of our summer vacations in class eleventh – when I went to watch this iconic film called QSQT. First day, first show. At the Paras cinema hall in South Delhi. All alone. Because of Juhi Chawla! Yes, only because of her, as I had become a fan of hers ever since she became Miss India! My friends had no such extra love for her and they refused to accompany me! I remember that the hall was as good as empty, with a handful of couples sitting far and wide! And what a film I enjoyed in the emptiness of that hall! For the next seven days, I kept going back to see the same movie with a different set of friends each time (with the last set of friends coming back repeatedly) as the crowds kept swelling. By the time we were watching the movie on the 8th day after buying tickets in ‘black’, QSQT was on its way to become one of the biggest blockbusters ever of Bollywood, and Aamir Khan one of the country’s biggest ever heartthrobs – at

Who says corruption is punished in elections? And why is the BJP committing suicide?

Normally, it is difficult for me to be cynical like media pundits generally are. But after looking at election results in so many states since 2010, the one sad conclusion that I can draw is that the corruption card is being overstated and over-hyped. it appears as if allies and perception management play a bigger role in deciding elections than actual facts related to corruption and plunder. This should be the biggest lesson that the top BJP leaders must draw from the elections. Compare two states and two parties and see what has actually happened. In Karnataka, the Lokayukta, Justice Santosh Hegde and his office accused the BJP government led by the then Chief Minister B. S. Yeddyurappa of corruption. These charges were related primarily to mining operations in Bellary. Subsequently, Yeddyurappa was forced to step down. At that time, my colleagues told me that senior BJP leaders based in Delhi had a bigger role to play in the ouster of Yeddyurappa than opposition parties! In a s

Our neighbours are waging wars through TV and radio; and we are acting as sitting ducks!

Strange as it may seem, despite India’s image of an amiable and polite nation, the country is surrounded by a league of adversaries with their noose always sharp to bait the hinterland and disturb the peace-cord of the nation. Needless to say, Pakistan is a major player in the league; China too is not far behind for all the obvious reasons. But what is most disconcerting is that the entire set of our neighbours, including Bangladesh and Nepal, have left no stone unturned to create political fissures in the border states; thus creating a rift between various ethnic and racial classes. Not only by our immediate neighbours, but India is also attacked with venomous content by and from unlikely quarters including apparently non-interfering Saudi and UAE communities. The malicious exercise against India has been active since quite a long time and today has enveloped all border-sharing states with its circumference engulfing almost all possible ethnic communities. To get the best desirab