Friday, July 31, 2009

Look who's singing -- the Pope

Apparently the Pope is releasing an audio album.
His holiness will be singing a Marian prayer as well as speaking Lauretan Litanies in different languages — Italian, Portuguese, French and German — accompanied by eight original pieces of modern classical music.

This is incredible for a person accused of supporting the Nazis.
Joseph Ratzinger joined the Hitler Youth in 1941 when, according to him and his supporters, it became compulsory for all German boys.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Swines of the week - mid week edition

Yes this is an early edition. Due to time constraints I was not able to get the right photos. But here goes,
  • Swine #1: As pointed out by reader CodeNameV - a beloved Indian economist Amartya Sen who claimed,
    I am on Left and if Left want me I’m delighted.

Apparently the criticism of the Leftist intelligentsia (aka village idiots) has stung Amartya that he wants to rebuild those bridges.
  • Swine #2: Is an old favorite of this blog, good old Sidd Varadarajan for his support Manmohan Singh's asinine actions and abject capitulation vis-a-vis Pakistan during the recent summit.

That is why Dr. Singh was careful to emphasise on Wednesday the need for India to make sincere efforts to live in peace with Pakistan, to reach “an honourable settlement of the problems between us,” to keep channels open. “Unless we want to go to war with Pakistan, dialogue is the only way out,” he asserted at the end of his speech, “but we should do so on the basis of ‘trust but verify’.”

Really Sidd, do you expect us to believe this bunch of BS? Let us say hypothetically there is another attack in Indian soil by Pak sponsored militants in the near future. Where does this leave the Indian Government? Are we again going to beat our breasts and complain that Pakistan govt. could not control the militants? Or are we going to continue the dialogue as you so smartly analyzed that without dialogue this problem cannot be solved? Lets face it Pakistan has no interest in controlling the militants from attacking India. The only reason why we have not seen more attacks is the pressure by the US government to handle certain groups within Pakistan which has forced the ISI and the Army to take action.
MMS has done precious little to bolster India's national security and his actions expose him for what he is.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Violence in the Assembly, Porkistan's hallucinations and more

Hell hath no fury like a Mufti scorned :)

India's launch of Arihant the nuclear-powered submarine, has drawn a sharp reaction from Pakistan which said,
Without entering into an arms race with India, Pakistan will take all appropriate steps to safeguard its security and maintain strategic balance in South Asia,

Its spokesman said that the addition was,
destabilising step which would jeopardise the security paradigm of the entire Indian Ocean region.

To which the Indian government should've told Pakistan to go fornicate with itself (excuse my french).

In other news, Pakistan tries to counter the Mumbai attacks with a fictional uprising in Balochistan
Pakistani Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir told his Indian counterpart, Shiv Shankar Menon, that India must delink the composite dialogue process from action on terrorism, otherwise Pakistan would be forced to produce before the international media at least “three Indian Ajmal Kasabs” who were directly or indirectly part of the terrorist activities in Balochistan. He added that Pakistan would easily establish that the Indian Consulate in the Afghan city of Kandahar was actually a control room of terrorist activities organised by the separatist Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA).

Can we ask Porkistan what drugs it is on? And ask Afghanistan to stop supplying it.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

For the first time, a girl wins paegent contest

And she did it without showing her face.
Girl wins beauty contest with burqa on
Miss Moral Beauty, which was inaugurated last year, is Saudi Arabia's first pageant for women. The only pageants being held earlier were for goats, sheep, camels and other animals, aimed at encouraging livestock breeding.

10 years after Kargil, we remember but we do not act

I can hardly believe its been 10 years since the Kargil war. Every generation is defined by various events. One of the key events of ours is this war. At a time when popular mood was about peace with neighbors with Vajpayee and Nawaz Sharif talking reconciliation, India was rudely shocked by the occupation of the peaks of Himalayas around Kargil by the Pakistani Army supported militants. The response of India while evicting the occupiers did not extend to hitting back at the camps on the PoK side.
Time and again India has extended the olive branch only to be stabbed back. Now PM Manmohan Singh talks about a dual track diplomacy with Pakistan after the Mumbai attacks. Has he forgotten how Mumbai was held in siege by a dozen militants when the world was watching? What has been India's response to the attacks? Nothing.
Yesterday MMS paid respects to the martyrs of Kargil. In the Hindu Philosophies blog, a question was posed Is there anything like "absolute dharma"?
Here MMS is far from the pinnacle, he has forgotten the basic dharma of a leader of a nation, protecting his citizens. We can only pray that the next 5 years are not a repeat of the last 5 when it comes to national security. Here we respect our jawans and their families and pray for their safety. Next time you meet a person from our Armed forces, do spend a few minutes thanking them for the excellent job they are doing in spite of various hurdles. Jai Hind!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Remebering Kargil: Yogendra Singh Yadav

Yogendra Singh Yadav (Courtesy:

Who Was He?

Yogendra Singh Yadav was a member of an Indian grenadier battalion during a conflict with Pakistan in 1999. Their mission was to climb “Tiger Hill” (actually a big-ass mountain), and neutralize the three enemy bunkers at the top. Unfortunately, this meant climbing up a sheer hundred-foot cliff-face of solid ice. Since they didn’t want to all climb up one at a time with ice-axes, they decided they’d send one guy up, and he’d fasten the ropes to the cliff as he went, so everyone else could climb up the sissy way. Yadav, being awesome, volunteered.

Half way up the icy cliff-o’-doom, enemies stationed on an adjacent mountain opened fire, shooting them with an RPG, then spraying assault-rifle fire all over the cliff. Half his squad was killed, including the commander, and the rest were scattered and disorganized. Yadav, in spite of being shot three times, kept climbing.

When he reached the top, one of the target bunkers opened fire on him with machine guns. Yadav ran toward
the hail of bullets, pitched a grenade in the window and killed everyone inside. By this point the second bunker had a clear shot and opened fire, so he ran at them, taking bullets while he did, and killed the four heavily-armed men inside with his bare hands.

Meanwhile, the remainder of his squad was standing at the top of the cliff staring at him saying, "dude, holy shit!" They then all went and took the third bunker with little trouble.

For his gallantry and sheer ballsiness, he was awarded the Param Vir Chakra, India's highest military award. Unlike the Medal of Honor, the Param Vir Chakra is only given for "rarest of the rare gallantry which is beyond the call of duty and which in normal life is considered impossible to do." That's right, you actually have to break the laws of
reality just to be eligible.

It has only been awarded 21 times, and two thirds of the people who earned it died in the process. It was initially reported that Yadav had as well, but it turns out that they just mistook him for someone less badass. Or they just figured no real human being could survive a broken leg, shattered arm and 10-15 fresh bullet holes in one sitting.

The honest economist PM (trademark)

Kanchan Gupta wrote about this last week in Daily Pioneer where he talked of Manmohan Singh and his integrity. The duplicity and surreptitious manner in which Manmohan Singh is implementing major policy decisions gives the impression that he might end up beating the First Prime Minister in historic blunders. Considering that  Nehru has a long list of disastrous decisions in his kitty, it takes quite an effort from the honest economist PMTM.

1. There was the secret pact that was "almost" reached on Kashmir during UPA season 1. No doubt by accident, as Carl Sagan would have said(0:29), the media channels like CNN-IBN were running polls during that time on whether India should give up Kashmir. Now in UPA season 2, we are seeing the plan being implemented more brazenly.

2. Then there is the nuclear deal. A lot has been written about it and the solemn promises made by Manmohan Singh in the parliament.

3. There is the small matter of NPT and CTBT. While Manmohan was still at the G8 venue, nuclear fuel supply was linked to NPT and CTBT.

Manmohan Singh is ostentatiously called for a meeting and snubbed. The pattern is just so predictably boring now. Even a politcal non-entity like Cambridge University implemented it. Manmohan praised the British Raj for ruling India. Cambridge dropped research studies in Sanskrit the same day. Manmohan went on to announce a $5 million grant to Cambridge to setup a Nehru chair. Sweet.

4. The major policy change on agriculture trade is to benefit the aam aadmi, the honest PM would vouch. Not to wory, he is also simultaneously working on the farmer suicide compensation package.

5. Another major policy change in terms of climate change. Trust the economist PM when signs this policy to enhance our competitive advantage even as the US dropped out of Kyoto protocol fearing economic fallout.

Who changed the tune?
Our consistent posture in the past has been that India can look to join any regime provided USA and the rest, who have been the major polluting culprits till now, take major steps in controlling their emissions. Indeed, USA has not even subscribed to the Kyoto declaration on climate change.

Yet the recent joint communication from Italy which makes no distinction between developed and developing countries comes as a total surprise. One has not seen any debate or recent discussions preceding this massive change in posture, in the Parliament or elsewhere.

Equally puzzling is the recent Cairo communique, tacitly dropping any prior condition relating to addressing the terror issue, before an all-encompassing bilateral dialogue between India and Pakistan.
A mention also needs to be made of the new conditions imposed by the West on supply of nuclear fuel, linking it with international treaties on the subject. Clearly there is an apparent conflict between these new conditions and the interpretation of the Indo-US nuclear deal as rendered to Parliament by the Indian leadership.

Are we seeing the contours of a new road map on strategic and security issues, quietly being implemented by the government, surreptitiously, stealthily, without public debate, and finally to confront the nation with a fait accompli?

Return of Europe?!

Sunanda K Datta-Ray apparently thinks so.
The profusion of burqas, hijabs, beards and fezzes, and Edgware Road’s shisha cafes with men puffing away at hookahs, seem to bear out Muammar Gaddafi’s boast that Europe will become “a Muslim continent within a few decades”.
The guy is a well-established, widely published, self-confessed liberal. But in a sweeping obeservation he drives the point home.
The Battle of Britain is being lost in Brick Lane and Bethnal Green without a shot being fired.
Isn't this supposedly a Hindu fundamentalist concern?
While rational Indians demand a uniform civil code, Britain is moving the other way. Eighty-five sharia courts for divorce, family disputes, forced marriage, domestic violence and commercial matters have operated in areas of Muslim concentration since 1982.
In a post-racial, secular, harmonious society, you would think these issues are settled. Especially with the march of inevitable demographics staring you in your face.
But the attempt to foist an uneducated immigrant minority’s social prejudices on the more cultivated and enlightened lifestyle of an established host society is unpardonable. If they are so committed to the burqa,halal or Friday closure, they should stay where these are the natural order.
What? Come again.
That is possibly an exaggeration. But some claim France has nine million illegal Muslims in addition to the more than five million acknowledged ones whose higher fecundity will mean a Muslim majority by 2050.
It's difficult to dismiss Sunanda as an Islam-baiter. Well, even he has to take recourse to the usual cliche:
Scholars maintain that the Quran only advocates modesty without specifically sanctioning burqa or hijab. That is also true of the Hadith, the sayings of the prophet. Veiling is a pre-Islamic tribal custom with Byzantine roots.
If you want them to do something, there's no other go but to appeal to Islam-centric behavior of Muslim societies. Once that's accepted, the whole concept of rational justice for everyone evaporates. Sunanda concludes what Huntington did long time ago. To him, the writing seems to be on the wall.
The Ottoman empire which ruled a swathe of south-east Europe from 1299 to 1922 had to be beaten back from the gates of Vienna in 1683. We may be witnessing the return of history.
We sure do live in interesting times. And it remains to be seen as to what will transpire with the inevitable march of history.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Security at the airport and VIP status

The news ruckus about the incident where APJ Kalam was frisked in the New Delhi airport has raised several questions about how/why a VIP was being humiliated by being searched by security personnel. While most people expect that if VIP's were to use facilities shared by regular people they would behave so, there are some who think that VIP's are beyond the law. A simple example is the Tirumala temple, every time some VIP comes for darshan be it the President or CM or some mega star, the inner sanctum is closed down faster than you can say Govinda. And people wait in those cages for hours till said VIP makes his/her exit.

Now K.T. Thomas (a former Judge of the Supreme Court of India) comes up with a really witty and thought provoking article in the Chindu about this dichotomy in handling VIP's. I really liked this interesting anecdote or rather conspiracy theory
When Zia-ul Haq was President of Pakistan, he and his baggage were exempted from security-checks. His weakness for ripe mangoes was well-known. It has been reliably theorised that his adversaries managed to have a small packet of mangoes to be included in his cabin baggage, that one of the “mangoes” was in fact a small bomb and that it exploded when the aircraft was air-borne. All the crew-members and passengers in the flight, including the General, were killed in a trice.

Hope we see more of K.T.Thomas in the Chindu in the near future.

Chinese Science and Homosexuality: Some Comments

Today’s edition of The Hindu has some articles that I thought are worth commenting about. The first is a front page news item with the heading ‘2 Chinese teams break new ground in stem cell research’. Not to detract from its importance, I wonder whether it would have been accorded the same degree of importance if it had been achieved in a different country. But this is no doubt an important step in realizing the potential of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) and the first time that someone has shown that they can be induced through limited genetic alterations to behave very similar to embryonic stem cells (ESC) in an in vivo context. More importantly, it heralds the arrival of China as an emerging powerhouse in the field of Science and Technology. The huge investment that nation has made in building a strong infrastructure in higher education and attracting talent is clearly starting to pay off. While Indian scientists too have published some good papers, I am aware of no comparable achievement. Those in charge of higher education in India would do well to take a moment to reflect on it. For those interested, Volokh Conspiracy provides a good summary of knowledge in this area and discusses some interesting ethical concerns related to these developments.

Today’s edition also has a reasonably good article by Dr.K.S.Jacob titled ‘Homosexuality, medicine and psychiatry’ which summarizes many known facts on homosexuality. My criticism here is that it either ought to have focused entirely on the science or if it waded into the larger sociopolitical questions, it ought to have framed the debate in proper perspective. Being a newspaper article, the former is entirely understandable. The latter however is not.

There is a paragraph titled ‘The debate’ which says that those opposed to it are not willing to accept homosexuality as part of a normal identity. This is no doubt the case but it takes us to the question of what normality is and how we define it which is where those supportive of the idea and those opposed to it differ. Both sides agree that certain forms of sexual practices are not normal – sex in public, sex with minors, sex with animals, etc. but disagree on why sex among adult men of the same gender is different and acceptable (or not). So what are the factors that make homosexuality distinct and unique in emphasis and treatment? The author does not delve into this question in any detail simply moving on to the next point saying:
"They (i.e. those opposed to it) also argue that it will lead to the breakdown of the family. Nevertheless, the threat today to marriage and family in India is from heterosexual men with their high rates of alcohol abuse, physical and sexual violence, harassment for dowry, unprotected extramarital sex and the abandonment of the wife and children."
There are no doubt other threats to marriage and family but the question here is whether homosexual relationships are also a threat to the traditional family. The issue is somewhat complex. The majority of gay Indians are married and have children and are having sex with men in addition to their wives. Many would certainly have preferred not to marry at all in the first place if they had a choice but would those already married leave their wives and cause a breakdown in the family if homosexuality became accepted legally and socially? The answer is not clear to me and the author does not talk about it either.

I will leave the discussion of prejudice for another day.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Now ISI wants to talk to India

As per Chindu journos, Nirupama Subramanian and Siddharth Varadarajan as reported in the Chindu article,
ISI chief to India: talk to us, we make policy too ISI wants to hold discussions.
Lt. Gen. Shuja Pasha made the out-of-the-box overture during a meeting earlier this month with the three Indian defence advisers representing the Indian Army, Navy and Air Force attached to the Indian High Commission in Islamabad, The Hindu has learnt.

Nice to see Chindu breaking some news for a change. The best quote came from an Indian official,
The Research & Analysis Wing operates within the law and is subordinate to the government.
There, the government is subordinate to the ISI, which is a law unto itself.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

All it takes is one line of idiocy to spoil an article

Praveen Swami is a writer for Chindu who attempts to keep the Chindu bias and propaganda to the minimum.
While the writers of this blog have given his columns much grief for its content, he does come up with interesting topics while keeping the content verbose. In a recent article
Where the state pays for teachers of hate Praveen tackles the decision of the J&K government to hire teachers linked to a hate mongering madrassa system. The entire piece is well written from the history to current day issues.
But he kills all the good will gained with one line,
Chief Minister Omar Abdullah — whose secular credentials are impeccable — must act to prevent the poisoning of the State’s school education system.

Omar A or mini-me (Farooq being Dr.Evil) has been one of the least secular persons from Kashmir.
His speech in the Parliament during the Amarnath row against the pilgrims and his party's stances during the Vajpayee lead government stands out.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Hoopla on the Ajmal trial

Chindu is among the pack of media hounds giving significant visibility on the Ajmal aka Kasab trial.
Like a note from the judge Tahaliyani who said,
We have to see whether he [Ajmal Amir] is really pleading guilty to all the charges levelled against him. Accepting or rejecting his plea comes at a later stage

Or the lawyer for one of the accused who claimed,
If he has given any statement against my client, I would like to check the veracity of the statement, and in order to do that,” said Shahbaz Rajput, “he has to be produced before the court here for cross-examination.

Can the media really be this stupid and follow a puppet show played to the audience, while the Government decides to hold iftar parties with a Paki government which cannot control a kid vandalizing a police station.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Looking back at 1962

This is a link I found at Shantanu's blog -Never Again the Same
It talks about the war of 1962 which was a war of reality that India could not trust its so called friends(China) and how countries it did not want to align with (US,UK, Australia) actually came to its aid.
More importantly this is a time when our own countrymen (CPM in particular) worked on behalf of the enemy for reasons that should be categorized as treason. A habit not forgotten by the present editor in chief of Chindu.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

PM's sellout at NAM

Swapan Das Gupta calls it the outrageous joint statement issued from Sharm el-Sheikh.

“Action on terrorism should not be linked to the composite dialogue process and these should not be bracketed.”

Who is to act on terrorism? Pakistan.
Who is involved in dialogue process? India and Pakistan.

Now let us substitute and read the statement again: Pakistan acting on terrorism should not be linked to the India-Pakistan composite dialogue process and these should not be bracketed. Can it get any clear? Whether Pakistan acts on terrorism or not, India and Pakistan should continue their composite dialogue.

MJ Akbar elaborates it here:
This absolves present and future Governments of Pakistan from any guilt in cross-border terrorism, a scourge India has had to face for decades. It is a commitment that Governments should continue the process of dialogue no matter how much havoc a terrorist group from Pakistan creates in India. If this principle had been in operation last year, India and Pakistan could have continued their composite dialogue in December after the savage Mumbai terrorism in November.

Now, for the interpretation from N.Ram:
The Hindu : Opinion / Editorials : There must be no backsliding
In plain English, this means both processes must proceed on the basis of their own logic, independently of each other. Pakistan must take action against terrorists regardless of whether the composite dialogue process resumes; and India must not link the process of composite dialogue to the quantum of action Pakistan takes against terrorism.
It takes incredulous leap of imagination to come up with this interpretation. But this is just one part of the story. The above statement becomes even more clear when read it in its context:

“Both Prime Ministers recognised that dialogue is the only way forward. Action on terrorism should not be linked to the Composite Dialogue process and these should not be bracketed. Prime Minister Singh said that India was ready to discuss all issues with Pakistan, including all outstanding issues.”

In yet another instance of spin, N.Ram tries to project it as a low-level affair between foreign secretaries: "
The Foreign Secretaries would meet as often as necessary and report back to the two Foreign Ministers, who, in turn, would review the state of the bilateral relationship on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly this fall." But the secretaries are talking only because "both Prime Ministers recognised that dialogue is the only way forward". 
The capitulation is glaringly evident when PM Singh is making concessions to discuss all outstanding issues. But not to N.Ram who is wearing blinds as a Congress cheerleader.

In another extraordinary instance of using a baseless premise, N.Ram writes, "While Pakistan has taken more meaningful action in the aftermath of Mumbai than it has perhaps taken in the past three decades of cross-border terrorism...". We continue to hear how the LeT has morphed into another social service organisation or how the top leader Hafiz Md Saeed is released on lack of evidence. Minor details, really.
The Prime Minister struck the right note in Parliament by clarifying what India expects Pakistan to do but emphasising that the only way forward in the coming months is engagement. This newspaper could not agree with him more — and expects him to hold firm on the course worked out.
With falsifications, deliberate misinterpretations and ommissions, N.Ram has come out in emphatic support of Manmohan's capitulation to Pakistan. It is hard to find one single statement in the entire editorial which is not misleading.

Whatever clarifications PM issues in parliament is irrelevant. As things stand, the joint statement is the only thing that counts. On that front, it has been a diplomatic disaster.

Amusing tales from Sharm el-Sheikh
The joint statement from Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt ... has turned into a public relations disaster with the PM virtually disowning, under intense domestic pressure, the agreement with his Pakistani counterpart, Yousaf Gilani, to delink the composite dialogue process from Islamabad's crackdown on terror.

The backtracking began in Sharm el-Sheikh itself, almost as soon as the joint statement was issued, with hilarious results. There were the Pakistanis celebrating with jhappis and pappis while stunned Indian officials digested the import of the scene unfoding in front of their eyes.

Can't let Pakistan get away with this. So, to dispel the impression of a sellout, the PM was hastily summoned to address an unscheduled press conference.
I encourage you all to read Kanchan Gupta's article: For PM Indian blood is cheap.

Swine of the Week - Week ending July 17th 2009

This week's winner of the CBCNN's SOW contest (prize money - Nigerian oil money - email is on the way) - Karthik, Xinhua Ram and Sudhir as discussed in Pilid's post here's this week's Swine and Jackass. Without further ado:
The first person who should be kicked out of Parliament for treason is the present Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Why is that? India has been a target of numerous attacks direct and indirect from its neighbor in the West - Pakistan. The most recent incident happening in Mumbai which was sponsored by LeT which owes its allegiance to the ISI Pak's intelligence agency. Of course now given Pakistan's internal struggles with the snakes it raised has given it some international sympathy. But shouldn't national security be MMS' main priority?
So MMS takes a trip to Sharm-el-Sheikh to pow-wow with Gilani. But rather than raising hell with Gilani about inaction in investigation of the Mumbai attacks for close to a year, MMS comes back making a composite statement which says India and Pakistan can continue their diplomatic relations while Pak will search for the killers. WTF!
Here's your swine of the week.

While most media outlets have raised their voice against the passive stance of the Indian diplomats, the Chindu expresses anger that people are demanding action from an Indian government which got nothing out of Pakistan.
There is nothing in the language of the latest India-Pakistan joint statement to warrant the ill-informed cries of ‘sell-out’ that have rung out at home.

Here's another joke from the LiC;
While Pakistan has taken more meaningful action in the aftermath of Mumbai than it has perhaps taken in the past three decades of cross-border terrorism...

Hence the Jackass of the week is LiC.
(I regret that I have not been consistent in the past, but hope to make this a more regular feature again).

Friday, July 17, 2009

What the Legalization of Homosexuality Means for India

I do not know how many people have been following the recent Delhi High Court decision in the section 377 case legalizing homosexuality. The Hindu wrote at least two editorials supporting a decision in the petitioners' favor. That wish has now come true. Other newspapers and TV channels are also full of stories hailing the decision and now everyone is fondly praying for the Supreme Court to uphold it.

Without getting into all the details, I will provide the gist of the issue here and why people need to take this more seriously than they have. Many people ask me the same question (or something to this effect): "What is the big deal about homosexuality? Why does it matter to us whether someone wants to be with a man and practice sodomy? Let them do what they want." Of course, if someone wants to practice anal sex in the privacy of their home, there is no good reason why others should be bothered about it. This is quite understandable and I have no problem with this view either.

The problem, most people do not seem to understand (those who do understand this either stand to benefit from it or otherwise do not open their mouths for fear of being branded anti-gay) and the media refuses to talk about, has nothing to do with homosexuals or sodomy and has little to do with the actual outcome of this decision which is all they know and care about but the process by which the court reached that verdict. That is the most disturbing aspect of it and if the Supreme Court approves it, it will become binding precedent enshrined in law and will come to haunt this country for a long time to come (I am sure everyone reading this knows that everyday is not a new day in court and new cases are decided based on principles laid down in earlier ones even if those were determined in a different situation and under different circumstances).

The petitioners were represented by extremely smart lawyers who followed the tried and tested strategies used in other countries. The central theme of their argument which the court accepted eventually was that this is something other countries have done, international organizations have supported and makes for good policy everywhere else. Therefore, it ought to be legal in India as well. Read the last sentence carefully again. What it means is that if foreign countries have laws and foreign courts have supported the idea for reasons of their own, it could be automatically incorporated into Indian law if the judges think it is a good idea to do so.

The biggest and gravest question is what this means for the future of democracy in India. What is the point of people voting or governments drafting laws when their laws are not worth all that much at all? If a judge does not like it, all he/she has to do is throw it out, say that he likes the British, Brazilian or Ugandan law better than the Indian one and that is what he/she is going to put in place of it. This may sound like an exaggeration but that is exactly what the court has done in this case and once this decision is affirmed by the Supreme Court, it will certainly be repeated in many more cases in the months and years to come. After all, there are numerous lawyers filing various kinds of public interest petitions all the time. Once the Supreme Court rules in this case, all that those going to court with some prayer have to do is show the names of some other countries which have a similar system, policy or scheme as the one they are suggesting and the names of a few foreign organizations that support the thought and lo and behold, if the judge likes it as well, it can become law the next day! Never mind state legislatures, parliament, law ministry, political parties' views or public debate. Neither the public nor public debate even figure anywhere in this scheme of lawmaking which will be a matter purely left to courts and lawyers debating foreign laws and agendas downloaded off the internet.

Before Indian legislatures were set up during the British Raj, British judges were deputed to India with the mandate to implement British laws with flexibility allowed for Indian conditions. More than sixty years after independence, we appear to be returning to the same colonial system once again except this time, it will be Indian judges taking their place and it will not be British laws in particular but that of any foreign country which suits their fancy. Judges will no doubt come one step short of kings only without the title while democracy will be left only as little more than an irritant.The tragedy is that in their anxiety to promote the cause of the gay agenda and movement, the media has completely ignored this far reaching, most unfortunate and dangerous outcome of this process.

Sharm-El-Sheikh Statement and the Way Forward

The Hindu editorial titled 'There must be no backsliding' insists that the joint statement of Manmohan Singh and Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani is a wonderful thing. You can read the joint statement on the Ministry of External Affairs website (unfortunately, it cannot be linked to directly). The primary flaw in this claim has been well laid out by Nitin Pai at Acorn and I have nothing more to add. I would recommend this to everyone interested in this issue.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

stark contrast

posting from the comments section. 
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Xinhua Ram

Xinhua Ram has left a new comment on your post "Funny headlines on Chindu":

The Telegraph:
A team of Congress MLAs was chased across paddy fields by armed CPM activists this afternoon in a pocket of Burdwan rocked by political clashes since the Lok Sabha polls.

Congress team attacked at Mangalkot. CPI(M) denies involvement in the incident, promises action if any member is found guilty

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Funny headlines on Chindu

Couple of funny headlines (well at least to my low brow humor standards :D )

Without Russia, Europe has no reliable source of gas
or how about this one, A(H1N1) vaccination must for Haj pilgrims Why should people who don't eat pig meat or anything associated with pigs be vaccinated for Swine flu? Why should the Government pay for it?

And a stupid one,
Teens think Twitter is pointless, after all All this from a survey of 1!!

Tibetan holocaust

Tibetan holocaust from "Secrets of The Yogis Of Tibet"

Monday, July 13, 2009

Differences between an essay and a news report - Ananth Krishnan case study

In an age when tweets, blogs and hollrrs have captured a significant space in providing news updates, there is still a significant importance of the regular news report across various dimensions.
Mr.Ananth Krishnan of Chindu has been the latest to jump on the China bandwagon after the departure of Pallavi Aiyer(got the name right finally!). Reading his news reports have been a treat for bloggers of this blog as it shows one how a blind supporter of a particular ideology writes reports. In many ways it reminded me of my old history class when we wrote essays on some arcane topics like "Industrial revolution and its impacts on Indian dairy farmers". In his analysis of the violence in Xinjiang,
Ananth in his eagerness to paint the Chinese Government as being misunderstood heroes and the Uighurs as the villian shoots himself in the foot several times.
For example he makes some statistical statements like these,
the region was almost entirely inhabited by native Uighurs. Hans made up only 6 per cent of the population then. The Chinese government launched a “Go West” drive to modernise the backward region, and the arrival of big industry to tap Xinjiang’s vast resources has seen a considerable change in the region’s demographics. According to the 2004 census, Hans made up 40 per cent of Xinjiang’s 20 million population. In this time, the Uighur contribution to the population fell from close to 80 per cent in 1949 to 45 per cent in the last census.

Then it is followed by a volte face analysis where the thought is that the Hans have less to gain than the Uighurs. All the while his facts don't support the analysis and in the best case give lukewarm support.
All this leads to a verbal lynching of Rebiya Kadeer, the leader of the WUC in a partisan way only a government propaganda machine is capable of.
In contrast, many Uighurs have not even heard of Ms Kadeer. A businesswoman with ties to the Chinese government, Ms Kadeer made millions off the government’s industrialisation of Xinjiang. She was later convicted of economic fraud, and as an after-thought, decided the government’s policies “were not in the interest of Uighurs.” Her campaign has sought to make political gains out of an ethnic conflict that has set back both groups, and risks further fanning the flames of discord.

In many scenarios this parallels the situation in J&K and Chindu's complaints about India's handling of the issue as opposed to China's handling of Urumqi situation which is being praised raises a lot of questions about the partiality towards reporting the facts.
Mr. Ananth is probably better served taking some journalism courses rather than coming up with half baked pieces like this one.

Vidya's vitriolics

Begs the question: what is Vidya's core competence?
The Hindu : Opinion / Leader Page Articles : The BJP’s battle with the big idea
The BJP’s core competence was minority-bashing and as much would be proved by the Kandhamal attacks and Varun Gandhi’s poisonous speeches.

In the end, the BJP’s inability to shed its bigotry proved its undoing.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

In today's news - Kerala CM punished, Urumqi revelations and the nuclear fiasco

The CPM and its lap dog Chindu often boasts about the efficiency of the CPM polit bureau. Apparently if someone within that committee supports a Government investigation into corrupt practices of one of its member, the committee can kick him out. That is the gist of what happened to Kerala Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan.
The Central Committee of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Sunday decided to drop Kerala Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan from the Polit Bureau for violating the organisational principles and discipline.

There are 2 versions to the story of the riots in Urumqi, the official version painting the riots as masterminded by external sources and the one by most other news networks painting the Government of using a heavy hand to put down the dissidents.
Guess which side Chindu chose?
The recent fiasco at the G8 where the transfer of certain technology and nuclear materials to India were banned has been well covered by the Chindu. In particular, Sidd Varadarajan hits the nail on the head with the alacrity with which the terms of the conditions were altered against India.
The final reprocessing arrangements and procedures have yet to be negotiated but the U.S. is keen to mark its territory. Yet, the Indian government baulks from publicly expressing its concern about the manner in which Washington is going about unilaterally seeking to alter the terms of the July 2005 Indo-U.S. agreement under which those reactors will be sold to us in the first place.

Friday, July 10, 2009

The Orissa migrant workers

Very recently, I had the experience of traveling in a general compartment along the Berhampur route. I bumped into a few migrant loom workers in the overpacked compartment. A few moved from Surat to Tamilandu but their experience has been no different. I am not surprised that Sainath chose to ignore the working conditions in Tamilnadu. Kerala indeed is a paradise for them. An irony that  women migrate out of Kerala as nurses and the men go to work in Gulf.
I noticed that just as Oriya workers have taken to looming, quite a few carpenters are migrants from UP. Language does not appear to be a barrier in trade.
The Hindu : Opinion / News Analysis : More migrations, new destinations

Sycophants letters will be published!

Please read this letter published in today's newspaper,
Mr. Ram’s interview with Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa is at once revealing, enlightening, thought-provoking and inspiring. The President had become the master of the situation without allowing any grass to grow under his feet. Sincerity of purpose and the courage of conviction are reflected in his words.
One would like to be sure that the President guards the island nation’s integrity and makes suitable amends to the several injustices meted out to the Tamils in the past by liberally giving them their due.
N. R. Sathyamurty,

Is the interview really, enlightening, thought-provoking and inspiring?
We should really get our former Reader's editor to write a guest post to this blog. If anyone can, do forward this note to him.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

When fireworks are no more fun

Some of my most memorable memories of Diwalis of childhood have been the fireworks. However learning of the inhuman conditions in most of those factories make those memories tainted. While kids like me enjoyed their festivals with fireworks, other kids worked their days and nights making those crackers in sweaty little huts, without protection and with harmful chemicals. Hence Chindu's editorial on the recent explosion in a cracker factory in Madurai is timely.
While the details of the article quote facts and regulations like a schoolboy writing an essay, the thought is what counts here.
Where Chindu could really put its power to good use is to avoid publishing ads from companies (especially those making firecrackers) who use child labor to make their products. But that is probably wishful thinking.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Islamic terrorists as heroes? Only in Porkistan

Apparently our beloved neighbor Prez Z thinks Islamic terrorists were heroes.
The terrorists of today were the heroes of yesteryear until 9/11 occurred and they began to haunt us as well,” Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari said on Tuesday night.

Apparently Z has a deathwish as well when he said,
Militants and extremists emerged on the national scene and challenged the State not because the civil bureaucracy was weakened and demoralised but because they were deliberately created and nurtured as a policy to achieve some short-term tactical objectives.

Let us see who created them in the late 80s and early 90s? Apparently some leaders called Zia Ul Haq and a person close to Z called Benazir Bhutto. Wonder what the Indian response should be. If I were to guess, "We told you all so many times before", would be a great riposte.

Falun Gong and the Human Rights Crisis in China

Read more about Falun Gong and the Human Rights Crisis in China at Warning: Not for the faint-hearted.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Goebbelisian propoganda at its finest

With the situation in Lanka getting settled slowly, LiC and his old buddy Mahinda "The great dictator" Rajapaksa had a tete-a-tete. This is being covered with great fanfare in the Chindu. Part I of the interview tackles the current situation of the refugees.
While Part II covers more of the war strategy.
Please read these two parts and let us know of your thoughts.

Where is the CPM template?

Why can't I find CPM or Left parties' view on the budget in today's edition? Where is the CPM template (eg: 1, 2, 3) which has served chindu's propaganda agenda for so long?
The Hindu : Front Page : BJP calls it a national disappointment
CPI(M) did indeed release a press statement disapproving of the budget. Is chindu moving along with times and acknowledging that CPM is a spent force even in its last bastion of WB and Kerala.
communist party of india (marxist)
The Budget placed by the Finance Minister in Parliament today is grossly inadequate in meeting the challenges of economic recession, growing job losses and declining purchasing power of the masses.
Also, interesting to note that N.Ram stamps his seal of approval on the budget, taking a position contrary to his party line. Blasphemy?
The Hindu : Opinion / Editorials : Focus on inclusive growth
The widening deficit certainly poses a major risk but it is a risk taken in pursuit of the broader objective of inclusive growth and may well be politically justifiable.
These are interesting times.

Friday, July 03, 2009

In today's news - Friday edition- Karat, 377, Moon walking and more

In today's news, CPM leader Prakash Karat pushed to the sidelines after the recent elections started raising the old commie bogeyman of foreign investment.
He expressed concern that the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government was trying to go ahead with its plans to open up the banking sector for foreign investment and allow foreign capital in the insurance sector, which he said were not in the interests of the country.

Apparently he would prefer his countrymen to be uninsured and unemployed than get paid by foreign companies.
In an editorial LIC commends the Center for
the Mayawati government for its spending on memorials and statues, drawing heavily from the Uttar Pradesh State exchequer brings welcome public scrutiny to an emphasis that has attracted considerable controversy.

Finally they drop the Dalit ke beti trash and start focusing on governance.

The Chindu has this annoying habit of kissing up to the Chinese however much they might pay them under the table. Read this statement and then tell me if an article around it is needed.
Last year the former NASA administrator, Mike Griffin, said he believed China had the capability to get to the moon and he wouldn’t be surprised if the next person to walk on the moon was Chinese.

I must say if Article 377 is MMS and co's strategy of bringing about religious unity, he has succeeded. The usual acerbic Muslim mullahs have asked for their brethren to condemn gay marriage.
The time has come for all religious leaders to unite on this issue and jointly protest the government’s proposed move to legalise gay rights. A consensus should be evolved for challenging the Delhi High Court order in the Supreme Court,” said Maulana Syed Jalaluddin Umri, Amir (president) of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind.

The entire article is filled with one hilarious statement after another.

Lastly in a show of solidarity between states, Mu Ka and BSY (karnataka CM) are opening statues of legendary poets Tiruvalluvar and Sarvagna.
If its for real solidarity why not open statues of say Trisha and Ramya which would show real solidarity :)

Coming next - Swine of the week and Jackass of the week. (Suggestions welcome.)

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

What people of any distinct culture can learn from ants

I came across this interesting article Ant mega-colony takes over world on the BBC. There were many surprising facts discovered by scientists about these Argentine ants which have created nests all over the world.
One can draw any number of parallels to the behavior of these insects to current issues faced by mankind. The magnitude of the problem is defined here
In Europe, one vast colony of Argentine ants is thought to stretch for 6,000km (3,700 miles) along the Mediterranean coast, while another in the US, known as the 'Californian large', extends over 900km (560 miles) along the coast of California. A third huge colony exists on the west coast of Japan.

A unique behavioral observation was made
..whenever ants from the main European and Californian super-colonies and those from the largest colony in Japan came into contact, they acted as if they were old friends.