Thursday, August 21, 2008

J&K burning: Nehru's blunder; separatists betrayal

If our country can ever remember a blunder done by the respectful first Prime Minister - Nehru it is Kashmir. Even when the then Home Minister Sardar Patel consistently insisted that Kashmir be resolved bilaterally by acceding it to Indian Union, Nehru wanted a route that was unprecedented w.r.t situtation - referendum.

One should go and look at PoK (Pakistan Occupied Kashmir). It is even worse than Pakistan itself. It is nothing but hell. In Indian Kashmir, at least there are roads, there are trains, there is at least some development and most important of all - freedom. Special status to KAshmir has been given since 1947. Even today an Indian from any other part cannot purchase land in KAshmir and is because to help the people there. Yet, separatists in Kashmir want to join Pakistan. They hoist Pakistan flag on Indian Independence Day in Srinagar's Lal Chowk (it is the same place where 20 years ago Murli Manohar Joshi of the BJP had hoisted Indian flag). This is definitely not the people of kashmir valley doing - it is the separatists who want merger with Pakistan and they indirectly say - "Azaadi". Consitutionally, legally - Kashmir is a part of India. What kind of freedom are such people talking about?

In Jammu when the controversy started over accomodation of Amarnath pilgrims, it was a single issue. All that Hindus in Jammu wanted was better amenities in Amarnath for JUST 2 MONTHS when the yatra is in place. Over the past several years, there have been frequent terrorist attacks on the pilgrims. In order to better facilitate and co-ordinate, the Amarnath Shrine board headed by Governor seeked more land. This was agreed by the government and law was passed to hand over the same. Pilgrims come in huge numbers to Vaishnov Devi, but because of military's presence the place is better managed. Similarly, for Haj, there are lakkhs of rupees spent on pilgrim safety and accomodation. Hence, Amarnath also is no different. Just when the separatists of the valley started protests, the government went back on the order. This gave BJP an emotive issue. But this time, it is a little different. Congress party of Jammu has also joined hands with BJP in ensuring that the land be given at least on a temporary basis.

According to me, there is nothing wrong in giving the land for temporary purpose for 2 months in a year. The sole reason the separatists want to prevent even this is to vitiate the peace and harmony. First of all, the governor Vohra must be called back. Second, of all there should be an agreement according to which 2 months the land is given to Amarnath Shrine board. As far as plebisicite issue of the separatists is concerned, it is out of question. India and indian govt will never accept the same.

The most communal position today is being taken by PDP who say that the land transfer will violate Section 370. How ridiculous is this statement? A temporary accomodation is not land transfer.

Our very HOME MINISTER Is not fit to be in home or in office. He must be sacked. He is the most passive and nuisance cum non sense leader in politics today. He is fit for nothing but only speaking and that too in an insane manner.

Modi does it again; cracks the terrorist puzzle

In yet another demonstration of political maturity, Narendra Modi has cracked down on terrorists in a silent, smart and suave manner. His complete freedom to Gujarat Police to crack down and the pressures put on the police to come out with concrete results helped the police finally reveal the terror trail.

SIMI being behind this has now come out in the open. The so called Indian Mujadeen is nothing but a subordinate of SIMI. They have been planning this from a very long time.

SIMI, was a banned outfit when Advani ordered the same in 2001 through involvement of the courts. A few days earlier, Lalu, Mulayam, Paswan together wanted ban to be lifted just to get Muslim votes. It was a cheap and communal trick. No religious body matters when it comes to national security.

Modi has shown a path after which not only BJP, but also Congress, defense analysts, other state governments have got leads. Yes, of course one cannot guarantee if every state and every police will act so independently.

Click this article to know how police cracked the case.

Now, even Congress - fortunately has filed an affidavit asking for an extension on the SIMI ban. Thankfully, Congress party has shown some maturity.

All this still leads us to unanswered questions - Can we still be safe? Can further such attacks be avoided or prevented?

At least what Modi has done needs to be applauded. There is a single and simple reason for this. If the perpetrators of crime are booked, the fear of committing the crime will reduce. Any govt when goes soft on terror and does not even book criminals, the crime rate will exponentially increase. If as a country and the law as a whole can be rigid, we can reduce the incidents. Alas!! if this was real...Modi has only shown that he can do it and he has done...

A ban may not help, but definitely it freezes the organizations assets. However, it is also known fact that Bangaldesh is sponsoring them indirectly. It is necessary to keep a tight vigil and share inputs with a central agency coupled with a tough law. A central agency as suggested by UPA govt and a tough law like POTA as suggested by BJP must go hand in hand to ensure that intelligence reports are synchronized and tough laws are in place to punish for such henious crimes.

Doing both of these will not eliminate such attacks, but will reduce them.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Internet Telephony legally starting next month

In what could trigger a second revolution in telephony in India, net telephony - i.e legally making calls from PC to cell/fixed land line/another PC(net telephony user) will be introduced from next month onwards.

This means the government will lawfully give permission to different ISP's to provide this facility. The ISP's can now give specific devices by which calls can be made if subscriber doesn't have a PC.

This information below is from a news excerpt -

"Consumers can avail Net telephony services by using any device with which one can access the Internet. It may be a PC or a laptop with a headset, a Web-enabled mobile phone such as smart phones or one with GPRS or 3G connectivity.

To make the call, subscribers will have to buy a Net phone package from any of the ISPs and download a dialler software on the device. With this software, consumers will be able to call other Net phone subscribers, a cellular phone user or a fixed line telephone user anywhere in the country.

If one does not want to invest in buying a PC or an Internet-enabled mobile phone, one can also use an Internet Protocol-(IP) based device, available for about Rs 800 or even a normal fixed line telephone to make calls over the Internet.

In this case too, subscribers will have to buy a pre-paid Net telephony card which works just like the long distance calling cards currently available in the market. At present, ISPs are allowed to offer voice calls over the Internet only for international long distance calls and PC-to-PC calls within the country. While existing integrated players such as Bharti Airtel, BSNL and Reliance Communication are allowed to offer unrestricted Net telephony within the country, they have not yet launched their service, probably for fear of losing their traditional voice business on their normal fixed line and cellular network."

The impact of this would be a further reduction in STD tariffs (say 20 paise per minute.) This would trigger a revolution. Of course, the quality of the voice would depend upon bandwidth. Actually it is better that this has been legally introduced now that BSNL is offering 2 Mbps speed for just Rs.500.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

3 more expressways opened

The story of expressways in India is moving forward, although slowly. This year is seemingly getting faster. 3 more expressways are now operational, taking the total number of expressways to 9. (Pictures: Courtesy :flickr and skyscrper)

Belgharia Expressway - West Bengal

Durgapur expressway - West Bengal
This stretch was initially a 2 lane highway and was the central point in connecting Delhi-Kolkata and Kolkata-Mumbai. In 2003, work began and by 2005, 4 lane was made. Instead of just upgrading, they made it an expressway with exits at sides to connect Kolkata on one side and Kolkata-Chennai part of Golden Quadrilateral.

Delhi-Panipat elevated Expressway
Delhi to Panipat journey used to take 45 minutes and was causing severe congestion in Delhi. Now, the new 10 km New Delhi-Panipat expressway has opened. 6 laned, tolled expressway with the help of which you can cover Panipat in 10 MINUTES....

What more!!! The road was made 10 months ahead of schedule by L&T. The 3.6 km elevated expressway is the longest in the country as of now. 30,00 litres of Petrol will be saved everyday from now on.
Nine meter wide Peripheral roads provided on either side will cater for local traffic without interfering with long distance main traffic. Three under passes at km. 87, 92 and 93.6 have been provided for the cross traffic. Via-duct has been provided covering the Panipat city on the crossings of Gohana road, Sanauli road, Assand road and Bus stand upto Skylark Tourist Complex. At the end of the stretch a 20 lane Toll Plaza has been provided for collection of the user fee.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

The country gets its 8th IIT in PATNA, Bihar

There is a reason why I capitalized PATNA. This is unbelievable in the fact that Bihar has been lagging behind in every social and economic paramter in the country for almost 20 years now. Although the fact is also true that Bihar produces highest number of IAS and IPS officers.

After Nitish Kumar's entry as CM, Bihar is changing, changing for the better. The newest thing being IIT now opened in Patna and clasess have begun. With 3 courses - mechanical, computers and electrical- IIT has now been opened. This is a dream come true for everyone esp Biharis.

In the past few years, several educational institutes have been opened and next month National Institute of Fashin technology will be opened. Apart from this 9 Indian technical Institutes (ITI) are going to open this year (yes, not on paper, but in reality). These will give access to so many people that it is going to boost the image of the state.

Also, very recently the state organized a JOB Fair attracting all sorts of companies to come and attract the young Bihari graduates. Ref Article

After Delhi, it is CNG in Ahmedabad and pollution drastically reduced

After Delhi's air pollution scene has been witnessing a dramatic reduction and improvement in air quality, it is now the turn of Ahmedabad. According to the recent article, Ahmedabad was 4th most polluted city in the country, but now it is 50th. This means that the introduction of CNG for autos there has reduced the air pollution so much.
I believe that this should spread across the state (hoping entire country) as it has huge natural gas reserves. Already there is a grid network of 1200 km gas pipleline giving chemical industries cheap and affordable gas. This if diverted can give huge potential to use it for public transporation.
The real problem initially seemed the non-availability in Delhi and long queues the auto drivers had to be standing in. Gujarat has solved the problem by setting up more CNG stations. CNG is definitely cheaper than Petrol and is undoubtedly a viable alternative. After all autos, now 600 of 1000 buses have been converted to CNG.
In 2001, 198 micrograms of RSPM (respirable suspended particulate matter) in every cubic metre of air. Later it reduced to 166, 132, 96,82 (recently). It is definitely an inspiring graph.
Hope, Bangalore gets CNG soon. It will reduce pollution so much.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Indira Gandhi's boldness

Rarely in Indian politics and rarely on ocasions have actions been taken that have gone in history for the good...One such thing was her action against Gorillas in Assam. Her toughness is what we lack when our nation is facing threats from all sides.

It appears that the nation's governments after her have lost the audacity she had.