Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Attack on Freedom of expression

It all started with a protest against a two-day seminar organized by Delhi University’s Ramjas College, called “Cultures of Protest”. It was opposed by ABVP, the student wing of the BJP. The seminar organized by the Left leaning Students' Union AISA and others in Ramjas College of Delhi University was disrupted. They invited Omar Khalid and Shehla Rashid. Delhi University's North Campus seems to have turned into a battleground with ideologically-charged student groups backed by Left and Right wing political parties locking horns. The seminar was disrupted and Left leaning students were attacked allegedly by ABVP students. ABVP allege that they are anti-nationals as they are involved in anti-India sloganeering. Omar Khalid was charged with anti-national sloganeering in JNU campus. But it is because of JNU background, no student can be labeled as anti-national. In protest against the disruption of the Seminar a day after the Left leaning students took out a protest march. It is alleged that the ABVP students attacked the procession march in which several teachers, students and journalists were grieveously injured. Police personnel deputed to main peace and order there were mute spectators and they allegedly beat journalists and snatched away their cameras and phones. They also deleted the messages and videos from the phones. Delhi police officials also took note of their action when it was brought to their notice. Policemen’s alleged involvement in the fracas were also brought to their higher officials They punished reportedly punished the errant police men. The ABVP students' behaviour in Delhi University is in no way acceptable. They have no right to brand the students who are of left leanings as anti-nationals. They can also not crush the voice of dissent in the name of nationalism and patriotism. ABVP has allegiance to RSS, the doting parent of the BJP. It is well known that there is BJP govt. at the Centre. Delhi police come under the Central govt. But it does not give freedom to ABVP to use violence against anyone who opposes them. A teacher of DU has reportedly been kicked and booted umpteen times allegedly by ABVP student. There is no place of violence in the temple of education. ABVP must know that they can not suppress the voice of dissent with force. They are also not in a position to give certificate of nationalism. Gurmehar Kaur, daughter of the Kargyl martyr and a student of Delhi University, has launched a frontal attack on ABVP through social media. Her posts on Twitter and Face book became viral because of her bravery that she alone stood openly against the attempt of crushing the voice of dissent by the right wing forces in the country. How absurd it is that the ABVP student allegedly threatened her with murder and rape through social media posts. It is also absurd that how even the Union Minister came out in the support of hooliganism and violence allegedly by AVBP students in Delhi University. It is the premier university of the nation. If the students of this university resort to violence in order to establish their dominance, what can be expected of other university students in the country? Kaur launched a social media campaign against the ABVP after it forced the cancellation of a seminar at Ramjas College. It was then accused of attacking students, lecturers, and journalists in the campus.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Kansas shooting shocking

The shooting in school and college of America is not new. It takes place there off and on. But the shooting, which targets the Indians, is shocking and horrifying. President Trump must ask his administration to tighten the security of all Indians living in America. Though the life is invaluable whether it is American or Indian, gunning down of the Indian engineer has saddened and horrified the people living in America. The gunning down of Indian professional in a bar in the Kansas city of America is shocking. The Indian engineer Sriniwas Kuchibhotle along with his friend Alok Madasani went to a bar after the end of their duty to take beer for relaxation. A former US Navy veteran yelled,’’ get out of my country”. He also reportedly engaged the two Indian engineers in argument and made racial comments on them. After that he shot Sriniwas dead, though another American came forward and grappled with the drunk navy veteran and in the process he and Sriniwas’ friend were also injured. All Americans cannot be called to be practicing racialism in the post Trump era. The American who came forward to save Indians show the magnanimity also. The shooting of India engineer is nothing but hate crime which has increased in America since Donald Trump won the presidential election. Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar will visit America from Tuesday during which key bilateral issues, including India’s concerns over a possible clamp down on H1B visas and safety of Indians are expected to be discussed. According to officials, Jaishankar will hold talks on regional and international issues of mutual interest with senior members of the Donald Trump administration during his four-day visit. It is urgently required to raise with the Trump Administration the issue of the security of Indians living there on priority basis. Foreign Secretary must convey the concerns of Indians over the deteriorating security scenario for them in America in recent times. President Trump’s America First policy and his hard line approach on immigrants boosted those Americans who believe in racial discrimination. The drunk navy gunner mistook Sriniwas and his friends for middle-easterners. President’s Trump’s move to make H1B visas difficult to get for job in America for immigrants is his tactics to blackmail Americans as job industry there is itself shrinking. The immigrants get job in America and any other country on the basis of their talents and intelligences. Hundreds gathered in Kansas city for a peace march and prayer vigil for slain Indian engineer and two other victims of a US bar shooting.US Navy veteran, is charged with first-degree murder and two counts of attempted first-degree murder.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Violence unacceptable

To determine which organization is nationalistic or which is not is not the business of Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), a student wing of the Bhartiya Janta Party. Under the cover of nationalism, ABVP has no right to declare some students belonging to students' wings- AISA and SFI- as anti-nationals. What was the need of disrupting, attacking and throwing stones at the literary seminar at Ramjas College organized by college literary society allegedly by a group of ABVP students only because Omar Khalid and Shehla Rashid were invited to participate? Khalid was arrested last year in a case of sedition over organizing a rally on the JNU campus in which anti-India slogans were allegedly heard. Rashid was the then the JNU student union vice president. It has been seen for almost two years that college and university campuses have been turned into a battle ground over the issue of nationalism. Jingoism has done no good to any country. All Indian students are nationalists irrespective of their allegiance to organization. So, centre of learning must not be converted into battleground. ABVP students alleged that they shouted anti-national slogans the video of which was also shown, though unverified. As far as the issue of violent clashes is concerned, some DU students, led by members of AISA and SFI, took out a march a day after demanding action against the ABVP members. Violence erupted after students from Delhi University colleges and Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) congregated outside Ramjas with the intention to hold a protest march against the RSS-backed ABVP student group. They were demanding action against the ABVP members who had allegedly hackled and threw stones at students gathered for a seminar at a conference hall, where controversial JNU student Umar Khalid was invited to speak. Teachers, students and journalists were wounded on the Delhi University campus as group clashes broke out over the disruption of a literary festival in Ramjas College a day ago, allegedly by members of the ABVP. The role of Delhi police also comes under scanner as they allegedly snatched cameras and mobile phones of the journalists and deleted the videos and messages. Not only journalists, teachers and students were also attacked. Police have allegedly attacked the journalists covering the protest march. Several students, teachers and journalists were injured in the group clashes. Some of them were also detained, but for a brief period. Delhi police appeared to be mute spectators to the clashes that were going on before them. As Delhi police is under central govt. in the city, it may be possible that some signals were sent to them to act passively as the students' wing ABVP is backed by RSS and BJP. The BJP-led NDA govt. is at the Centre. The freedom of expression must not be curbed under the garb of nationalism. Who is nationalist and who is not nationalist cannot be decided by the ABVP.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Debasement of democracy

Amidst chaos, ruckus and violence, E Palaniswamy won the trust vote and continued to be the chief Minister of Tamil Nadu. He got 123 votes while the rebel OPS got only 10 thereby he comfortably sailed through. But whatever happened in Tamil Nadu assembly during the trust vote is a total debasement of democracy. All democratic norms, courtesies and rules were thrown to the winds in the T N assembly. AIADMK leader E Pallaniswamy is the nominee of Sasikala, party General Secretary VK Sasikala. She nominated EPS as AIADMK legislature party leader as she was declared guilty in DA case. She was sent to jail after being found guilty by the Supreme Court. EPS was seeking trust vote in the assembly. It was necessitated because Sasikala's leadership was challenged by the rebel O Paneerselvam. He claimed to be the true representative of late Jaylalithaa and he too staked claim to form the govt. Governor Vidya Sagar Rao after some dilly-dallying for some days, he called E Palliniswamy to take oath of office of the Chief Ministership. As Palliniswamy had submitted the signature of support of 124 MLAs and OPS merely submitted of 10 MLAs, Governor called EPS to form govt. and show majority on the floor of assembly within 15 days. E Pallaliswamy sought trust vote and won comfortably. But the behaviour of the opposition DMK MLAs in the assembly has demeaned the democracy. It was the most unsavory day in the assembly of Tamil Nadu. Violence, ruckus, uprooting of microphone and flinging of chairs inside the assembly were the hallmarks of the assembly, though they have become normal practices in almost all state assemblies. But the way DMK MLAs misbehaved with the Speaker in the assembly is nothing but the mockery of democracy. What more despicable and disturbing act could be possible than the spectre of Speaker’s helplessness before the hooliganism in the assembly. He was taken out by the Marshal. His chair was occupied by the DMK MLA in the assembly. He was seen on the TV screens showing his torn shirt and uprooted microphone. It was the lowest point in democracy. Democracy was lowered to abysmal level. DMK MLAs had to be evicted and Congress MLAs walked out. The trust vote was conducted in their absence. It may be feasible that if the assembly was dissolved at this point of time, there could be political benefit for the opposition DMK. But for taking political advantage, hooliganism inside the assembly has no justification. DMK acting President Stalin also showed his torn cloth before the TV cameras outside the assembly, though his shirt appeared to be unbuttoned, not torn. If the elected representatives of the people behave in this manner in the assembly or Parliament, what impact it would have on the common people. Most of the elected representatives considered to be role models for the electors. But when they themselves turn the temple of democracy into a wrestling ground, what can be expected of the common people? EPS won the trust vote in the assembly, but democracy .

Friday, February 17, 2017

Army Chief's warning to anti-national elements

Army General Bipin Rawat has rightly warned the anti-national elements and those who sympathise with terrorists and stone palters in the trouble torn-state of Jammu and Kashmir that if they continued to do so, they would be dealt with gun. His warning is justified. He gave this warning while paying tribute to the brave hearts of the Handwara and Bandipora encounters. What wrong the Army General has done by warning the people, who have picked up arms, involved in acts of terrorism and displayed flags of the ISIS and Pak. He has rightly said that Army will treat them as anti-national elements. He has done no wrong in warning the anti-national elements. It is well known that Army uses minimum force and exercises maximum restraint. PDP-BJP alliance govt. also appears to have supported the Army General warning by issuing a statement that it is the responsibility of the parents to keep away their children from the stone pelting sites. Gen. Rawat has neither warned the Kashmiri youths nor common citizens of the state. His statement must not be seen through political prism. It is right that Army must not be involved in politics. But at the same time it is not correct to say that they should not open its mouth about the difficulties being faced by their deployed in Jammu and Kashmir to curb terrorism and keep the citizens of the state protected from terrorists, who are being sent from across the border. There is no wrong in taking action against all those who encourage, support, aid and abet separatism and terrorism in the state. Army General is not expected to say that all anti-national elements will be awarded by the army. General Bipin Rawat has rightly said that sympathisers of terrorists will also be dealt with guns. General Rawat’s warning has unnerved the separatist leaders and anti-national elements in the state. Since the Narendra Modi-led NDA govt. came to power at the Centre, terror acts and infiltration, ceasefire violations have gone up. Though our army personnel give befitting reply to ceasefire violations and terrorists during encounter with them, our several brave hearts have also been martyred in encounter with terrorists, who are sent from across. It appears that terrorists across the border have forgotten the surgical strike undertook by Indian Army in the recent past. So, a stern message was required to be sent across the border that now enough is enough and if they continued to create mayhem in Jammu and Kashmir with overt or covert support from the separatists, Indian Army would not hesitate in taking harsh measures to quell them. General Rawat's warning has upset the separatist leaders because they support the terrorism which is being sponsored by Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir. Syed Gillani's faction of the Hurriyat Conference, a separatist conglomerate, openly advocated the merger of Jammu and Kashmir with Pakistan while other faction JKLF advocates for the independence. That is why they have been upset and disturbed at the warning of Army General. Anti-national and separatist elements don't deserve to be awarded, but they should be dealt with heavy hand. Jammu and Kashmir is the integral part of India and it will be so. India must act to take away Pakistan-occupied- Kashmir(PoK) with Jammu and Kashmir. The local people of Jammu and Kashmir need feel threatened by the warning of General Rawat. It is for terrorists, anti-national elements and separatists who are bent on breaking our unity and integrity.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Right decision, but belated

Tamil Nadu Governor has taken right decision by inviting Sasikala loyalist Edapadi Palaniswamy to form govt. He is going to be sworn-in as CM of Tamil Nadu this evening i.e. on Thursday 4.30 PM. Though the decision of the Governor is belated, it appears that when he became convinced about the number on the basis of the signature by 123 AIADMK MLAs support to Sasikala's nominee E Palaniswami's candidature for the leader of the legislative assembly, he invited him to be sworn-in as CM. Governor has given him 15 days' time to prove his majority on the floor of the assembly. He appears to gone by the number, which is also the right criterion for invitation to the legislative party leader to form the govt. OPS may have claimed that he has overwhelming support of the people of the state and he represents Amma in AIADMK politics in the true sense of the term, but as far as number of supporting MLAs is concerned, he is far behind the majority support. He had reportedly submitted the signature of only 10 MLAs to the Governor. But he claims that if the party MLAs kept in the protective custody in Golden Resort by Sasikala, before being sent to jail by the Supreme Court in Disproportionate Assets case freed, they would flock to his camp. If his claim holds water, he can show it on the day of vote confidence to be sought by Paliniswamy in the assembly within 15 days. Paliniswamy has been one the most trusted lieutenants of J Jayalaliththa and he is also Sasikala’s loyalist. When AIADMK General Secretary Sasikala was held guilty in Disproportionate Assets case and awarded four years of jail by the Supreme Court, her hope to become the CM was dashed to the ground. Before going to jail, she appointed Paliniswamy as the leader of legislative party and Diwakaran her nephew as the Deputy General Secretary of the party. She had already expelled OPS from the party.It clearly means she intends to rule the state and the party from the jail through her proxies. The formula of rule by proxy is not new in the politics of the nation. It was for the first time when Bihar Chief Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav was sent to jail in Fodder scam case, he had brought his wife Rabri Devi straight from the kitchen and put her on the chair of Chief Minister. First he got her elected as the leader of the legislative party, then she staked claim before the governor to be sworn-in as CM. Lalu went to jail and she became the Chief Minister of Bihar. He ruled the state from jail through none other than his wife Rabri Devi as proxy. So, it appears that Sasikala has played the same game. But there is also a wide difference between the political scenario of Bihar and Tamil Nadu. Former Bihar Chief Minister and RJD supremo has always been one of the most popular leaders of the country. He is a mass leader while Sasikala's political identity is only that she has been a close aide of Jayalalithaa. She is not a leader of the people in Tamil Nadu. She claims to be the most suitable person to carry forward the legacy of Amma only because she lived with Jaya in Poes Garden residence and was treated as her sister. That is right. But as far political succession is concerned, it can only be decided by the people of Tamil Nadu. Paliniswamy may win the vote of confidence in the assembly, but the real test will be in the assembly elections. As far the claim of O Panerselvam on the legacy of Jayalaliththa is concerned, he has been one of her most trusted political lieutenants. Whenever she had to vacate the chair of CM either because of adverse court judgement or ill-health, she nominated OPS to rule the state in her absence. He has carried out the responsibility twice. OPS himself is a leader of the people in his own right. Sasikala nominee Paliniswamy may win the vote of confidence, but the battle for inheriting Jaya's legacy will go on until the assembly elections are held. The command of the government will only be established by a fresh mandate. In the assembly of 234 members in Tamil Nadu, Jaya's AIADMK had 134. So, at least 117 MLAs are required to show majority in the assembly. Otherwise, state will be put under President's Rule.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

A dangerous city

Delhi is not only a city but it is also national capital. People from all over the country come to the city in search of job, pursue higher studies, get better treatment and make round of it as tourists. As it is a national capital, foreign dignitaries also live in this city. Besides all of them, the common Delhiites live in the city in constant fear and danger. Women are considered to be most unsafe if the disclosures at the annual press conference of Delhi police are anything to go by. There is a rape every four hour in the city. It is shocking and shameful. The incidents of rape hang our heads in shame. Three of the four cases are unsolved by the police. The performance of Delhi Police in curbing crimes against women is not great either. Of the 4,165 molestation cases, 1,132 were not unravelled, while 291 (14%) cases of rape of a total of 2,155 remained unsolved as well. Despite the fact that Delhi police is one of the most smart police forces in the country, its failure to solve the cases is nothing but deplorable. Apart from rape, eve teasing, molestation and stalking of women in the city are common. The situation has reached to such a pass that even the mother and the father of the tiny and teen-aged daughters fear in allowing them to go out of the door after the sun sets in the city. The recent arrest of a serial child rapist in the city exposes the weakness of police force to strike fear among criminals. The women in the city live in the shadow of rape, molestation, eve teasing and stalking. They are always concerned about their safety and security. Despite the enactment of rigorous laws after the Nirbhaya rape and murder incident, the atrocities against women have gone up sharply. Even more heinous crimes have been reportedly committed. Apart from the question of women's safety, Delhi police have to contain murder, kidnapping, theft, robbery and burglary. Police in Delhi is controlled and commanded by the Central government. So, it is the responsibility of the Central govt. to improve their functioning. It is also a fact that the increasing influx of the people in Delhi from all corners of the country has made the task of the police very difficult to tackle the problems that come with them. Central govt. must make the resources available for Delhi police to organize them in the most modern way. Police personnel must be equipped with modern weapons and gadgets to pre-empt any crime in the city. All police stations in the city must be equipped with overhauled vehicle, telephone, weapons and personnel to attend the call made by the victim to act promptly and swiftly. The issue of women's safety must be dealt with sincerity, promptness and swiftness. It is not fourteenth century when the greatest English playwright William Shakespeare said, "Women Thy name is Frailty". It is 21st century when men and women have equal rights. And women even leave men behind in several fields where talents and intelligence are put to test. So women's security must be of utmost importance for Delhi police. It should be dealt with priority. Unless and until police strike fear among criminals and develop contact and co-ordination with the common Delhiites, the graph of crime is bound to go up and up. The gap that exists between the police and the people must be bridged. The sense of alienation among the people with the police creates gap between them. So, the friendly relation between people and police in the city is required to be developed to win the war against crime. .

Monday, February 13, 2017

SP-Cong wins perception war in 1st phase

Muslims constitute about 26 percent of the electorates in Western Uttar Pradesh where elections were held on Saturday in the first phase. The concentration of Muslim population is the highest in this area. Muzaffarnagar which was in the news for the infamous riots in 2013 also falls in western Uttar Pradesh. The polarization politics was played too much by all the political parties in elections in the area. Though BJP President held a press conference after the first phase of the polling and declared that his party would win 60 seats, signals after elections point towards opposite direction. His claim was refuted by the BSP. BJP is solely dependent on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s magic in UP elections. But now it appears that his magic has been worn-out to the large extent if the election outcomes first in Delhi and then in Bihar are anything to go by. It is clear that Muslims play a decisive role in the outcome of the elections in western UP. They also turn up to the polling booths to cast their votes in large numbers. The perception is that the majority of Muslim votes have gone to SP- Congress alliance candidates. After Muslim electorates, Jats also have strong presence in the area and they play a dominant role in the elections. There are three main contenders- SP-Congress, BSP and BJP- in the fray. Besides these three, the fourth contender in Western UP is INLD of Ajit Singh.The ruling Samajwadi Party under the leadership of Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has struck alliance with the Congress party. The political pair of Akhilesh and Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi is liked by the people, especially the youths, in the state. The alliance between the two parties has mainly been struck to stop the split of Muslim votes, otherwise the benefit of which could be reaped by the BJP. SP and Cong have come together to stop BJP from coming to power in the state. Though BJP has negligible number of Muslim votes anywhere in the country, its move of polarizing Hindu votes in reaction to them always prove beneficial for it. And on the basis of this assumption, Shah has claimed of bagging 60 out 73 seats in western UP. But here is also a fourth player, that is, INLD of Ajit Singh who is the strongest jat leader and has considerable influence on the community. He is the son of former Prime Minister Charan Singh, who was the voice of Jat and the tallest Kisan leader. If INLD gets majority of Jat votes, he may queer the pitch badly for the BJP. BSP supremo Mayawati is also a strong claimant of Muslim votes. She tries to portray the picture that reflects that Muslims will be the most beneficiaries and secured in her regime. She says that BSP the only party to defeat BJP in the state. That is why Muslims should vote her party to power. But as far as perception is concerned, Akhilesh-Rahul pair has won it. They have already grabbed the Muslim and all secular votes. Perception matters most in politics. Politics is itself a game of perception. Both Akhilesh and Rahul are young, energetic, forward looking, liberal and honest. Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has emerged as development-oriented and he has also transcended castes and community barriers, unlike the old Samajwadis of his father Mulayam Singh Yadav's ilk sticking only to caste and community lines in elections. Akhilesh looks beyond castes. So, all castes consider him as their leader. The perception that he wants development in the state is built up, which goes to his favour. There may be different opinion poll surveys making different predictions, but one thing is certain that SP-Congress alliance has edge over others in this election in UP. The campaigning of Uttarkhand and second phase of UP elections are in full swing. They will come to end by the evening. There are 67 seats in second phase of UP and 70 seats in Uttarakhand elections.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Immigrants are assets for America

Despite a setback to President Trump’s executive order of ban on the citizens of seven Muslim countries from travelling in US by the judiciary, he moots yet another brand new executive order on immigration in two to three days, though he has expressed confidence of winning the legal battle. He says that he is about to issue a brand new executive order on immigration to ban the citizens of the seven countries from travelling in the US because of security reasons. It appears that he thinks that due to terrorist activities, which are unfounded, going on in these countries, there is security threat to America if they allowed their citizens to move freely. He cites safety and security reason of the American citizens as of uppermost importance for him. But the fact is that there is no terror activity in those seven countries the citizens of which his executive order bans. It is nothing but the brashness of the US President Donald Trump to garner support on nationalistic issue. Pakistan being the mother of all terror incidents, it is nowhere in the purview of any ban. Pakistan and Afghanistan have not been tagged with the seven Muslim majority countries, which had been banned. Not even a single terrorist accused of involvement in the 9/11 terror attack on America is from any one of the seven countries. How did Trump regime single them out for terror activities are baffling the people all over the world? It appears that Donald Trump suffers from security mania and in the name of safety and security of the American citizens he is blackmailing them. As far as immigration is concerned, America has always kept its gate open for all the citizens from different countries of the world. Globalization is its essence. Immigrants have played a great role in the all round development of America. Talented immigrants from different countries of the world have played their role in the development of America. The concept and essence of America is based on liberalism, broad thinking and cosmopolitan approach. There has never been any discrimination on the ground of origin, colour, community, language, culture, civilization and tradition in America. It is a land of freedom and right. By putting travel ban on the seven Muslim majority countries, the Trump administration had committed Human Rights violations on which a district court of the country has rightly put stay order. The head of the administration of any country must be conscious about safety and security of its citizens. Every country must follow all safety and security norms but it does not mean that for following them, it should compromise with its global essence and character. Has President Trump ever thought of those citizens from one of the seven banned Muslim countries who have sold everything in their motherland to settle in America in an atmosphere of freedom and liberty? America has been known for world destination. So, to keep the global character of America intact, President Trump must restrain from issuing any brash executive order on immigration.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Ball is in Guv's court

Governor Vidya Sagar Rao must not ask either Sasikala or O Paneerselvam to form the govt. until and unless he is satisfied about the one who has majority in the house. Tamil Nadu acting Chief Minister O Paneerselvam's sudden conscience call to revolt against AIADM General Secretary Sasikala in whose favour he had resigned on Sunday to facilitate her to be the chief minister so that the command of the party and the government could be in one hand has plunged the state in administrative turmoil. Since the revolt of OPS against her by sitting on meditation for 45 minutes before the memorial of former late CM J Jaylaliththa on the call of her spirit, Governor Vidya Sagar Rao has been out of state. He is also the governor of Maharastra. But his absence from Chennai for almost a week when administrative uncertainty looms large on the state has also been criticized. Though Sasikal met the Governor with of all the 133 party MLAs and she has submitted their signature in her support to him while staking claim to form the government, OPS has also gathered overwhelming support of the people in the state. It is also alleged that Sasikala has herded all the 133 MLAs to a resort so that the rival camp could not poach on them. It has also been alleged that they have been made captive. Though it is a matter of investigation to know what exactly has happened, Governor Vidya Sagar Rao has rightly asked the DGP to see whether the MLAs are in captivity at the Golden Resort in Mahabalipuram 65 KMs away from Chennai. Sasikal has been the closet aide of Jaya while OPS has been her trusted lieutenant. Whenever Amma had to leave Chief Minister's post because of her going to jail or indisposed health, OPS was handed over the responsibility of CM. Sasilaka has never been among the people so she has no connectivity with them. She also also has never entered any electoral fray at any level. The majority of MLAs may have been with her, but the sentiment of the people in the state is with OPS. He is a mass leader and has been among the people of the state. As far as the claim of majority support is concerned, the floor of the assembly is the most suitable place to test. The number of MLAs required for majority in the assembly of 234 is 118. It will be in accordance with the constitution for the Governor to parade all the MLAS to satisfy himself about the majority. The two factions have already staked claim to be the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, but the political battle does not seem to end between Sasikala and O Panneerselvam. She has staked claim to form the govt. after submitting a letter of MLAs’ support to the Governor. Her letter contained the names of supporting MLAs. She also submitted individual letters of support furnished by AIADMK MLAs. Now the Governor is in the process of verifying the signatures. On the other hand, Panneerselvam met acting Governor Vidyasagar Rao, and too claimed he still has the right to be Chief Minister as he was coerced into resigning. He has alleged that the signatures submitted by Sasikala are forged. Sasikala is a co-accused in a Disproportionate Assets case. Disproportionate assets case should not be a hurdle in Sasikala’s way to take oath as its hearing is yet to start in Supreme Court. If she enjoys majority to the satisfaction of the governor, she should be sworn-in as CM and asked to prove her majority on the floor of the assembly. The Karnataka government has challenged her acquittal in the case by the High Court and this judgement is expected next week. Next move of the Governor is likely to settle the dust in the state politics which is going through turmoil.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Confrontation over raincoat barb

After full-throated bashing of the opposition in Lok Sabha, Prime Minister Narendra Modi thumped it so hard with his words in Rajya Sabha that became intolerable for them. He hit where it hurts most. The debate on Motion of Thanks to President both in Lok sabha and Rajya Sabha has increased bitterness between the Opposition and the ruling parties. The language used by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Rajya Sabha against former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh while replying on the motion created unnecessary uproar in Rajya Sabha, and that caused bitterness to the level of walking out by the Congress Party. Prime Minister in his reply on the issue of demonetization enumerated all the plus points in its favour but while praising his predecessor Dr. Singh for his contribution to the nation as economist, he threw a biting barb at him saying that anyone should learn from him the art of steering himself clear of all charges even presiding over corruption ridden regime. PM Modi said this is his art of taking bath wearing a rain coat. Congress Party took the rain coat jibe against its leader very seriously and walked out of the Rajya Sabha and decided to boycott Parliament until PM apologized for it. It is a fact that despite a plethora of alleged scams during the last UPA regime of Dr. Manmohan Singh, there is no charge against him. Even opposition leaders have not alleged that there is any personal involvement of former PM in scam that surfaced during his regime. There may be a charge of inaction against him, but his honesty and integrity cannot be questioned. Even the opposition party leaders never questioned his integrity. But one charge certainly can be made against him that he failed to act in time. PM Modi's acerbic barb against his predecessor is because he was upset when Manmohan Singh attacked his govt. on the issue of demonetization in Rajya Sabha by describing it as a monumental mismanagement, organized loot and plunder. It is because of this that PM Modi made this outrageous jibe against his predecessor. Leveling charge against the opposition is very easy but substantiating it has become difficult for the ruling party. No charge of corruption either against former PM Dr. Singh nor against Congress President, who was also UPA Chairperson, has been substantiated. But whenever there would be any debate and discussion on any issue in Parliament, the corruption charges against the previous regime occupy most of the time. Whatever may be issue of discussion in Parliament, norms, civility and decorum must be maintained. The language should be civilized and within the parameter of the constitution. Now more than two hand half years of Narendra Modi-led NDA govt. have elapsed and since it came to power, the people of the country have only heard repetition of charges and scams against the previous regime from them, but no action. Only choosing confrontation with the opposition and posing about itself as providing corruption free governance without any result on the ground make no meaning. The office of the Prime Minister must be above political partisanship. The language used against the incumbent or former Prime Minister must be civilized. PM's position must be respected.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

China's opposition - a foregone conclusion

It is a foregone conclusion that China would block any move by any country ,especially India, to get UN to sanction Pak-based Terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad Chief Masood Azhar. This is the third time that China has repeated its action by blocking the US move to get UN to sanction Masood Azhar. It is beyond any understanding that why China is so rigid to oppose any move against terrorism especially when Pakistan is involved. When 14 countries out of UNSC 15 members supported move to proscribe him, why does China oppose it? It is for international community to ask China when there is no opposition by any country to get Azhar sanctioned by the UN on any ground whatsoever, why is it showing technical or evidential ground to oppose it time and again? When Jaish-e-Mohammad is already designated as global terror organization, why its chief has been left scot free to roam around Pakistan without any hurdle. The problem of terrorism is not of the individual country but the entire international community. Terrorism is the number one enemy of humanity. China must not veto the move to get UN to sanction Masood Azhar only because India is interested. Apart from several other big terrorist incidents, Masood Azhar is allegedly masterminded the terror attack on Indian Air Force base in Pathankot. His banning is the immediate need of the hour for international peace and security. China being one among the five big powers of the world, it must not adopt double standard on the issue of combating terrorism on international level. Now it is no longer secret that the terrorism emanates from Pakistan. Wherever there is a terrorist incident, the root of which is mostly lying in Pakistan. One of the Chinese provinces is also disturbed by terrorist incidents. It has also been reported that the terrorism being faced by that Chinese province emanates from Pakistan. It is also a fact that Pakistan is considered both by US and China as geo-strategically very important for both the countries. In recent years, with the development of economic corridor, Chinese economic stake is also involved in Pakistan. And above all, the increasing hostility between India and Pakistan draws China closer to Pakistan. It has always sided with Pakistan because it feels that India is its main rival and challenger of its superiority in Asia. China again opposes a bid by US, UK and France to designate Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed Chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist by the UN; India raises the issue with Chinese govt; NIA special court declares him and 3 others proclaimed offenders. China has once again opposed a bid by US, UK and France to designate Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed Chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist by the UN. India raised the issue with the Chinese govt. even as NIA special court declared him and 3 others proclaimed offenders. China has put a "hold" on the proposal, which comes barely weeks after India's bid to get Azhar banned by the UN were scuttled by Beijing last December. India must not sit but vigorously launch diplomatic campaign at international forums to bring more and more countries on board to support its move vociferously to get UN to sanction Masood Azhar.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Chinamma's control formalized

Sasikala Natrajan has been the closest aide of former Chief Minister late J Jaylaiththa for the last two decades. She was so close that she lived with Jailaliththa at her Chief Ministerial residence of Poes Garden. Jaya treated Sasikala as her sister. Being so close to Amma, Chinamma had become well versed in the politics of Tamil Nadu. After the death of Jayaliththa in December last after a prolonged illness, it was expected that Sasikala will immediately step into the shoes of Jaya. It is the political tradition of AIADMK that one person holds both the post of Chief Ministership and the Secretary General of the party to have total control on both organization and administration. And accordingly, she first became the General Secretary of AIADMK after Jaya’s death, and then made her way to become the Chief Minister of the state. O Paneerseelvam, who has always been the stop gap CM whenever the need arose, resigned citing personal reason to pave way for Sasikala Natrajan to adorn the post. Paneerselvam resigned and Sasikala was elected unanimously as the leader of AIADMK legislative party. She is to be sworn-in as CM any time. Paneerselvam was appointed as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu on December 6, 2016 following J. Jayalalithaa's demise. Previously he served in the same office in 2001-02 and 2014-15. His first two terms as chief minister came to be when he replaced Jayalalithaa in the role, after she was forced to resign by the courts. But everything is not that easy for Sasikala. First of all she never has been the leader of the masses as Jaya was. She was always with Jaya as her shadow but never had any outreach to the people on the ground. Sasikala has never been elected to Tamil Nadu assembly. She has not ever entered electoral fray. This is her first drawback. Sasikala has also been facing Disproportionate Assets case, which is pending in the Supreme Court. Supreme Court is also going to start hearing the case next week. This is like Goebel's sword on her head because if the Supreme Court gave any adverse verdict, she would have to step down immediately. Besides this case, there is also ED related cases pending against her. Constitutionally, there is no obstacle in Sasikala to become the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu as she has been elected leader of the state legislature party. All the 134 AIADMK MLAs have given support to her. But as far as political morality is concerned, she lacks command and authority. She has no connectivity with the people of Tamil Nadu. It is also certain that she cannot match the political stature of Jayalaliththa in the state. Sasikala will also have not so strong command on her party men as Jaya used to have. The entire opposition in the state is against her election as AIADMK legislature party leader to become CM. Sasikala has neither political nor administrative experience to carry forward the legacy of Jaya in every respect. Jaya's niece is also against her to become the heir and legitimate claimant of the post of Chief Minister. So, Tamil Nadu will face a period of certainty till fresh made is given by the people.