Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Coming events casts…

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, in his first press conference proved that he is better politician than those who are self-endorsed politician. True that Mr. Singh had nothing to clarify about the stance of his government. He repeated almost all the points what was spoken earlier in parliamentary forum or other forums. In fact, UPA government could achieve successful nuclear deal with USA in very its first term. The successive budgets of his government were presented with a focus Congress party had in mind.
Although the task entrusted to him is still unfinished and therefore he would like to complete his term. According to him, the agenda is unfinished yet. Off course, he made it clear in the same breath that he is ready to make way for Rahul Gandhi whenever Congress party so demands. He considers Rahul Gandhi as fit for the cabinet minister’s post. He also urged him to join the ministry many times in past; however he was helpless as Rahul Gandhi was reluctant.
Manmohan Singh’s claim that the task assigned to him is unfinished yet, may not be taken on its face value. Manmohan Singh’s statement should be taken on the background of criticism about the entry of Neharu-Gandhi family members. Is Manmohan Singh making pitch for Rahul Gandhi? The twenty first century put an end to slogan shootings, public rallies at Delhi’s Ramlila Maidan or at Shivaji Park in Mumbai and such gimmicks in Indian politics. Slogan shouting crowds (pro and against) was most handy technique employed by party followers. So was about public meeting. Rallies were to look crowed with the help of the trucks provided by goods transport businesses in Mumbai. Now with the mushroom growth news channels in TV media, now rallies and slogan shouting crowds and rallies could be big flop, not the worth risk taking.
The Neharu-Gandhi family member’s entry in politics was highly controversial on number of occasions. Even the Congressmen did not welcome Neharu-Gandhi family members. The oppositions were critical about all the members of Neharu-Gandhi family. Once, Madhu Limaye, the socialist leader in parliament described Ms. Indira Gandhi as ‘gungi gudiya’ (dumb doll). When Rajiv Gandhi was inducted in top slot in the country, slanting reference was made about Rajiv Gandhi and his friends. ‘Doon Boys’ (raw college boys of Dehradoon School) was the adjective used by newspapers. Ms. Sonia Gandhi herself was very low profile when she entered the politics. Sharad Pawar formed his own party, the Nationalist Congress, only to oppose Sonia Gandhi's leadership. Sharad Pawar’s party remains rickety after almost a decade. How a person of Italian origin could become prime minister, questioned the BJP; however this question is almost forgotten by both BJP and the nation.
The public appeal to Rahul Gandhi by someone like Manmohan Singh should be looked in the special Indian political context. Hinting the space for Rahul Gandhi by non-less than Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, suggests lot in politics. Does the press conference of prime minister cast the shadows of coming events? May be May not be.
-Ramesh Zawar
Senior Journalist

Monday, May 24, 2010

3 G? Hanjee!

Finally, the marathon bidding, fetching huge sum, for 3 G in India is over. The 3 G bidding process is comparable with the old time LP-long playing- record of Indian classical music. HMV, the only music producing company of India made a brisk business in India during thirties. Government of India too made a good business. Nine of 22 telecom companies including two government owned telecom companies participated in the bidding. Lot of allegations was hurled against each other involving the telecom authority.

In fact even elite class in India do not know anything about 3 G; however the telecom company’s business executive see the best business opportunity the 3 G business because they know India’s love for music and movie. When music or movie is on any channel young, people in India get mad. They used to set aside their working schedule on Friday there was practice of releasing the new Bollywood movie was in force. They equally love watching Sachin Tendulkar batting on small screen. Perhaps this is why managements of many Indian companies do not have objection to placing TV sets suitable place in their many offices. The people are fond of watching live coverage of yoga guru Ramdevbaba and Asarambapu. Loksabha has channel of its own

ThreeG bidders might be hoping to make money by selling the fresh Hollywood or Hollywood movie, live concord of A R Rehman, Yanni etc. The sale of video conferencing via mobile handsets will definitely fetch fair margin. The telecom businesses in India is confident that with 3G license it is possible that telecom businesses may grow and the breakeven point may not be not far away; therefore telecom companies were not shy of aggressive bidding. The entertainment and media is fast growing business in India next to telecom. This is why they are happy that they got license. Government is too happy that through 3 G business could fetch the fabulous amount.

-Ramesh Zawar

Senior Journalist

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Region, not the religion

What religion has to do anything with face covering burqa? The answer is no; however it would be appropriate to examine the religious claim about burqa. I think burqa has deep routes in climatic conditions of the region and certainly not the religion. The climatic conditions in many parts in the world require covering the face, especially ear, nose and eyes the most delicate senses of human body. In Arab world terrible type of cyclone hit the vast sandy lands all over the countries and people who are traveling on the back of camel needs. It must have been sudden necessity of completely cover the face; or rather protect the nose, eyes and ears the main portion of face against the wind. This might have shaped the practice and Koranick schools were prompt to link this practice with religion. In fact no Koranic version prescribes the wearing of the burqa.

The burqa practice has many more dimensions: reducing sensuality in women is also one. Because of this newly found dimension, the Koranic schools are more enthusiastic to enforce the burqa system. In fact, in sandy area of Rajasthan in India similar situation exists. Poor people cannot afford to travel in AC cars. They travel on the back of camel and need ear, nose and eyes to be covered in case of sudden outbreak of cyclone. The cyclone brings heavy wind and sand and visibility in the atmosphere drops down very fast. Head- gear or burqa provides some sort of protections to sensitive organs.

Recently I found in many cities many office going young girls, who ride on motor cycle make use of the dupattas to cover their face against the scorching sun and hot air. Only eye portion kept open, off course! No one has forced them to do that. 100 years back it was custom for Marathi women to cover their head. The point of dignity was in question; therefore, it was difficult for them to jettison this practice. During thirties sudden change in head cover practice was seen offing. Now with the mercury hitting 45-47 Celsius in many cities of Maharashtra the new form of head and face covering is coming back. The face is covered with dupattas in such a way that identification becomes difficult. The intention is very clear: save the skin from scorching sun and carbonized dust.; however this is not the case in Europe. Despite the fact that the burqa or any type of face covering or head gear is not needed in many countries Muslim organizations are making outcry about banning the burqa. With the increased terrorism around the world, if the suspect is ordered to remove the burqa the authorities are accused of meddling in the religious practices. If European countries planning some sort of legislative arm help policing it should be welcome.

Religious fanatic always make use of such social changes whenever that suits their intension and arguments. Some self-styled community heads uphold this practice as a thumb rule. They also make such rules binding to all. These so-called rules are some times deemed supreme to the parliamentary law. Many communities including some upper castes still maintain the practice of burqa. It is sort of rule and no one has guts to challenge the mukhias. It is no secret about anti social elements including the terrorist groups taking the advantage of burqa practice for concealing the identity. If many European are worried with this stance, they are not wrong entirely.

-Ramesh Zawar

Senior Journalist

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Not to gallows Yet

Indian judicial system, notoriously known for delays, finally awarded death sentence to Ajmal Kasab, the only surviving 26/11/ terrorist attackers. It is not clear when and where he will be sent to gallows. In Indian judicial system death sentence needs to be endorsed by the high courts, besides both police and the defendants can choose to appeal in apex court. There is a provision of clemency also. President of India can change the capital punishment to life imprisonment if he feels the case is justifiable. With the statement of S. M. Krishna, the minister for foreign affaires, one more factor is added to whole of this matter that may delay the process of sending Kasab to gallows. Mr. Krishna pressed for extradition of Kasab co-conspirators based in Pakistan so that they could be brought to justice here. The court verdict in Kasab trial case has included 20 others who are responsible for the ghastly crime of 26/11.
Pakistan may use this judgment for seeking the extradition of Kasab and others. Pakistan has been using the various pretexts since 1993 serial bomb blasts in Mumbai. In most cases, Pakistan insisted for concrete proof. Pakistan had always phoo phooed the evidence handed over by India. Pakistan has taken similar positions in past when India complained about the 26/11/ incident.
Although the verdict in Kasab case is candid enough, Pakistan may tactically use the same judgment for delaying the death punishment to Kasab. The main accused Kasab is not the only person held guilty in 26/11 case. India’s demand for extradition of other conspirators of 26/11. The main conspirators are still let loose in Pakistan .If India demands the custody of conspirators, Pakistan may insist India to resiprocurate its demand for Kasab’s custody. A diplomatic feuding will continue only to die down after the fresh event break out.
In fact, Lashkar and such organizations are war machines of Pakistan. Except Kasab, commandos and Mumbai Police smashed all of the instruments of the Lashkar-e- toyba’s war machine in two-day long joint operation. After the three-time defeat in a border, front war Pakistan has changed its war strategy. Pakistan knows that it is difficult to fight war with India; therefore, it sent the regulars solders through Kargil rout. Simultaneously Pakistani intelligence agency was inducted in to encourage spread terrorism in India and many other countries with the help of jihadi groups. This is different kind of warfare. It is not exactly war, not even a battle. It cannot be compared with world wars fought earlier or the army operations that have been carried out in various parts of the world after the world wars. At the most, this can be described: ‘guerrilla war’. The weakness of civilian governments is their target. Scare and terror are the wheals of this new war machine.

-Ramesh Zawar
Senior journalist

Monday, May 3, 2010

Solid Verdict

Ajmal Kasab, the only terrorist luckily caught alive while Mumbai’s couple of icon hotels and a residential hub of Jewish community was under attack by Pakistani jihadi organization seventeen months back, likely to be awarded death sentence.
For the first time in India, police could link Kasab directly to the ghastly crimes includes killing spree in most crowded railway station of the world. Special Judge Tahaliyani heard Kasab and about 300 witnesses during marathon trial of 211 days. He also went through the heap of evidence supplied by forensic agencies. This time Mumbai police had the rare success. They could establish conspiracy case against the attackers. With the loss of its top officers, now Mumbai police had a measurable amount of success in 26/11/ attack case that they could never had in serial bomb blasts case of 1993 despite best the assistance then by prosecutors Mr. Ujjwal Nikam. Though 26/11 attackers belonged to Pakistan, all of them could not be tried, because except Kasab, nobody survived during counter attack by commandos.

Kasab, a boyish looking young terrorist trained in Pakistan, contradicted himself many times during the trial. He, held guilty, was facing 86 charges. The conspiracy hatched in Pakistan was also established during the trial. This is most important aspect of the Kasab trial. The verdict in this Kasab trial would go long way to help India who has been working hard to bring the facts about Pakistani sponsored terrorism. In India law and order is state subject meaning that onus lies upon state governments to investigate the crimes and subsequent prosecutions as per the VII schedule to the Constitution of India. According to constitution, the states are competent to raise police force as per their law & order, internal security and other requirements.

Although central government has been supplementing the efforts of state governments in modernizing their police forces in terms of infrastructure, to meet challenges to internal security, it is clear that neither the central government nor the state governments are able to prevent the terrorist attacks or effectively investigate the major attacks in country including the one on parliament house. Between 1989 and 1993, terrorism in J&K was mainly due to the activities of indigenous Kashmiri organizations. When they were unable to succeed, the ISI started infiltrating trained jihad cadres of the Pakistani pan-Islamic organizations, who had fought against the Soviet troops in Afghanistan in the 1980s, into J&K for beefing up indigenous organizations. Since 1999, the Pakistani jihad organizations have taken over the leadership of the anti-government of India movement.
India has a little over 140 million Muslims -- the second largest Muslim community in the world after Indonesia. Only a very small section of the community has taken to terrorism due to various grievances and instigation by the ISI and Pakistan's religious, fundamentalist and jihad organizations. The overwhelming majority of Indian Muslims are loyal, law-abiding citizens. They have not allowed their anger against the Indian government or the Hindus for any reason to drive them into the arms of terrorist organizations. India has the most modern, peaceful and forward-looking Muslim community in the world. There are hundreds of Muslims from various parts of the world undergoing jihad training in madras all over Pakistan. However, there are no reports of any Indian Muslims studying there. Osama bin Laden's IIF has 13 member-organizations from different parts of the world -- five of them are from Pakistan. Not a single Indian Muslim organization. When the US started its air strikes on Al Qaeda and the Taliban training camps in Afghan territory on October 7, 2001, there were demonstrations by Muslims in many parts of the world. There was hardly any demonstration in India.
Although the Mumbai court verdict is solid example of India’s ability to deal with crime, it is not sufficient. India will have to go providing military help to its own states. India will have to fight all sorts of wars to stop the terrorist started war in various states. This war can be fought like any other war that militaries around the world often fight. Earlier in many parts of the world, the Indian military served as peacekeeping force. Now it may need to serve itself: to fight war for maintaining law and order.

-Ramesh Zawar
Senior Journalist