Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Collateral damage

What is Collateral damage ? Wikipedia says thus: Collateral damage is damage to things that are incidental to the intended target. It is frequently used as a military term where it can refer to the incidental destruction of civilian property and non-combatantcasualties.[1][2]

But collateral is also used by banks; "collateral security" means additional security to the main obligation in a contract. 

So why didn't the banks seek collateral security when Kingfisher Airlines asked for loans? Is it because Mallya was an MP? 

Now we hear that crores will be written off since Mallya is not personally liable. The salary for the staff at KF, as well the whole loan can easily be covered by Mallya. Instead this playboy is busy holidaying in UK and advising Indians. He dares talk about India when all he has done is rob them.

"Last year's race was a tremendous success. I'm sure we can expect an equally spectacular event this year. Buddh International Circuit always looks after us very well and I know that they have been working hard behind the scenes to fine-tune the circuit and facilities even more.

Today our FM says that our farmers are honest but only poor and hence loans should be given to them. What sympathy! If only a miniscule % of money that the banks indulge in the way of loans given off/ written off for the biggies, is used in better ways, this country can support the hardworking farmers in a big way. The below is the story of one farmer who killed himself - Nagalinga Reddy. There are scores of others who die for the lack of a 1 or 2 lakhs and whom the banks hound without any respite. When banks don't mind writing off loans in crores for a few, the rest are forced to depart from this world.

He was $9,000 in debt to three banks, one cooperative society and moneylenders. Bank officers regularly came to visit, and one bank took legal action. The moneylenders regularly harassed him. He avoided the ignominy of having the cooperative society post a public notice saying his land would be auctioned only by paying them a small sum.

Our FM continues to say the following:

The finance minister further said that if a corporate borrower fails to pay the loan, it is the bank which suffers, not the borrower.

And why dear FM? Why should the banks suffer? Have you made specific laws to make it thus?

People like Mallya continue to be an hero to many since they seem to get away with anything. His only business is the business of indulgence. He has also carved a generation to copy this way of living too.

Can Mallya be brought back to India to pay for the collateral damage?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Why this fixation?

Yet another discussion in Twitter made me realize that the media fixes our focus on certain issues, states etc. It all started with the BBC article on Haryana and "Why rural sexual violence remains rife in India" … The reasons for the same has been blogged, discussed fought over upteen times by many. The following are some of the reasons that we have been hearing and is reported by BBC.

"I'll tell you the main reason for these rapes," explains Suresh Koth, one of the elders.
"Just look at what's in the newspapers, on television. Topless women. This is what's corrupting our youth. After all this is India, not Europe."
One council elder was reported as saying that girls should be forced to marry young to protect them from rapists. Others routinely blame Western influences.  
But when I tweeted that topless women are elsewhere too but why rape happens mostly in Haryana, I was asked if there is a basis for "rape happens mostly in Haryana".  This made me check into existing reports and the result was scary. Haryana is behind some other states! Please have a look at the following chart:

This means that while the nation focus on Haryana, rapists in other states are getting away. What attracts the media towards Haryana? The Khaps?

Now if you are wondering like my friend if MP has more rapes due to to it's high population then why not Punjab (479)  and Chhatisgarh (1053) which is similar in population to Haryana (733) ?  

When it comes to major cities Delhi (453) is a hopeless case and Mumbai (221) comes second in the incidence of rape.

And if less women are reporting to the police in Haryana, the media should be picking up even less. So are the women in MP least bothered when they are raped? Or is the local and national media hesitant to print it? If so why? 

Ahmedbad in Gujarat, Asansol in WB, Dhanbad & Jamshedpur  in Jhakarnd, also Bangalore in Karnataka were the  best cities for women and children during year 2009 since no rape was reported. Unfortunately it has changed drastically. I have added the 2009 figures later.

But why is our media fixated on Haryana?  To shame someone? The government in power? But whatever, it is good if authorities compared such data to see why rapes occur in some states/cities and not in others. What are the factors that aid the rapists? The media did report in general about but when it comes to individual incidence the readers as well as the media seem to prefer Haryana. Until I looked at this report I was under the impression that there is no state worse than Haryana. Also I was under the impression that Bombay is a women friendly city but although it is not as bad as Delhi, it still comes second. 

As for Kerala, it is worse. It has also become number one for overall crimes. But I do wonder if it because crimes are reported without any fear in Kerala unlike some other states.

The original reports can be downloaded from this site and the following is a copy of the discussed matter.

Incidence of Rape in Year 2009 - State Wise

Incidence of Rape in Major Cities - Year 2009

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Is the Metro Man E. Sreedharan arrogant?

A few in the media and others seem to be trying their best to make him so.

Who is E. Sreedharan? Why should he be arrogant? I think he is not a man familiar just to the Keralites but to the majority of Indians.

Konkan Railway ( A Forbes article on him)

The managing director is 77 years old, spiritual and is laying tracks like there's no tomorrow.

On a recent Saturday morning Elattuvalapil Sreedharan arrived at a dusty construction site on the outskirts of Delhi to check on the progress of India's first high-speed airport train. In spite of round-the-clock work, progress on boring a huge tunnel into the earth was not up to mark.
"This we discussed. I gave them guidelines," says the soft-spoken 77-year-old engineer who is managing director of Delhi Metro, the capital's gleaming subway system. After finding out that a contractor was stymied by a cash flow problem, Sreedharan freed up Delhi Metro funds to pay for materials so work could continue.

This is the kind of no-nonsense, bureaucracy-busting efficiency that is Sreedharan's hallmark. It helped him to accomplish what had seemed impossible in India: finish building the initial $2.3 billion subway system in 2005 under budget and almost three years ahead of schedule.

Though he retired, the Government needed his services and he was appointed the CMD of Konkan Railway on contract in 1990 by the then railway minister, George Fernandes. Under his stewardship, the company executed its mandate in seven years. The project was unique in many respects. It was the first major project in India to be undertaken on a BOT (Build-Operate-Transfer) basis; the organisation structure was different from that of a typical Indian Railway set-up; the project had 93 tunnels along a length of 82 km and involved tunneling through soft soil. The total project covered 760 km and had over 150 bridges. That a public sector project could be completed without significant cost and time overruns was considered an achievement by many.

Awards and accolades
  • Railway Minister's Award (1963)
  • Padma Shri by the Government of India (2001)
  • Man of the Year by The Times of India (2002)
  • Shri Om Prakash Bhasin Award for professional excellence in engineering (2002)
  • CII (Confederation of Indian Industry) Juror's Award for leadership in infrastructure development (2002–03)
  • One of Asia's Heroes by TIME (2003)
  • AIMA (All India Management Association) award for Public Service Excellence (2003)
  • Degree of Doctor of Science (Honoris causa) from IIT Delhi.
  • Bharat Shiromani award from the Shiromani Institute, Chandigarh (2005)
  • Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur (Knight of the Legion of Honour) by the government of France (2005)
  • CNN-IBN Indian Of the Year 2007: Public Service (2008)[7]
  • Padma Vibhushan by the Government of India (2008) 51525
  • D.Lit. By Rajasthan Technical University, Kota, Rajasthan, in 2009
  • Degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Honoris causa) from IIT Roorkee, 2009.
Pampan Bridge

Konkan Railway Bridge

Does he have a right to be arrogant? Of course yes! Who has a problem with it? Not the ordinary Keralites but a few with vested interests. While the Kerala ministers swear to the Keralites that they need him, behind the curtains they are doing their best to keep him out of the Cochin Metro project. If he is there how shall they benefit from this big project. Right now there is a lot of confusion and one is made to believe that DMRC itself does not want him!

Nothing good comes to Kerala, not even the service of an exemplary man who belongs to the state of Kerala.

I pray that Keralites protest hard and make sure this man heads this project else the project is doomed... only cash shall flow.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Is God a myth?

The other day I had an interesting twitter conversation with blogger Arun who in real life is a caring doctor and an atheist. It started off with the following tweet from Arun.

Arun @Charakan  RT“@BobCarmody: @AtheistWorld If prayer worked we would all be rich. We could also all be dead from each others' prayers. Etc etc #fail

I couldn’t help but send forth the following tweet:

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK  @Charakan but what if you are praying to a discerning God who decides if one is to get rich or should be dead :) 

Therein followed more tweets and the end result was that none moved an inch further away from their own conviction. 

Arun @Charakan  @Asha_EK If t mythical god is discerning & act according to merits wht is t use of praying. All those who pray are then fools -:)

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK Well.. prayers are not for God.. it is for your own ack that one is a mere human
gud tht u agree prayers are speaking to urself. But what a stupid way of speaking to one self!How it helps in reminding v r humans?
  if we were all not human but God we wouldnt be praying but would have been all powerful to do anything.
lol- Asha, first u have to take out this concept about all powerful god myth Then u bcome sane
  Well.. did I not survive this long without being "sane".. am sure I shall survive a bit more :)
  logically thinking thr can't be an all knowing all powerful creature So y such concepts
not if you have experienced it personally... for an atheist such experience may be random acts.. I have experienced His care

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK @arunpillai666 have faith in yourselves No one else is there -:)
Arun @Charakan @arunpillai666 @asha_ek evry 1 deals with their problems themselves. Family friends Including talking to themselves may help.

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 You say that all those who blv in God are insane..that does not make you sane.

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK yes brain washing from early childhood is t foremost reason for persistence of this insanity called belief in god @arunpillai666

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK @arunpillai666 have faith in yourselves No one else is there -:)
Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 when I was a baby/toddler/child,I put my faith in my parents didnt I?I dont find it odd to place my faith n God now

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 In this mad world I need an infinite reference point which is absolutely good.. Can you give me an alternative?

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK parents are in front of u in flesh and blood So it is sane unlike t insane belief in mythical god -:) @arunpillai666

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 these same parents blvd in an unseen God before me.. may parents are not insane..

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK yes brain washing from early childhood is t foremost reason for persistence of this insanity called belief in god @arunpillai666

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 You say that all those who blv in God are insane..that does not make you sane.

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 there are enough arnd us.. senseless killing, raping, looting etc.

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK all t violence u described are thr in this World for centuries along with God belief Nothing new @arunpillai666

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 hence I want an alternative.. it is there for sure

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK Wht evr u enjoy r fruits human civilisation No utopian alternative presented by mythical god available @arunpillai666

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK violence in this World among Humans is comparatively less now as more & more ppl quit religion & embrace humanism @arunpillai666

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 maybe many have stopped being "religious" or are staying away from religious institutions.

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 According to one estimate, atheists make up about 2.3% of the world's they sustain this world?

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK @arunpillai666 in Western Europe those hu states they r not Theists are 1/3 to 1/2 of population. World is following Europe -:)
@Asha_EK @arunpillai666 ur god beliefs have been sufficiently diluted by Humanism so that u do not follow ur scriptures blindly So non toxic
 Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 hhhaaaaa.... what if my humanism comes from my belief in God? you will not accept it?
Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK tht is because of ur & ur parents humanist culture All religious scriptures threaten ppl to believe @arunpillai666
Bottom of Form

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 how long doc? N evry prsns life cms a tme whn he rels tht hs parnts r not prfct. Lkws one qustns evrthng evn a God

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK lol Most ppl force kids to pray. Tell if u dont believe or pray te will go to a mythical horrid place called hell @arunpillai666

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 so how many % of atheists in this world?
Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK Wht evr u enjoy r fruits human civilisation No utopian alternative presented by mythical god available @arunpillai666

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 Yet many of these giants who left a mark upon this world believed in God.why didnt they treat themselves as Gods?

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK think u have to get out of this god concept Need de addiction Not ur fault Brain washing of childhood -:) @arunpillai666

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 :) if my belief in God works for me why should I get out.. it is a good addiction for me

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK @arunpillai666 no compulsion Only request not to brain wash & instil fear of mythical god in ur kids

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 If it works for me why not for my kids?
Arun @Charakan@Asha_EK lol Most ppl force kids to pray. Tell if u dont believe or pray te will go to a mythical horrid place called hell @arunpillai666

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 have never done that myself nor my parents

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK tht is because of ur & ur parents humanist culture All religious scriptures threaten ppl to believe @arunpillai666

Happy Kitten @Asha_EK @Charakan @arunpillai666 Fear? you have wrong ideas abt God.. someone brainwashed you :)

Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK Wht kind of god myth u believe in? Believe in relg scriptures? @arunpillai666
Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK thr is no need of questioning a mythical creature -:) do u question t pink unicorn? @arunpillai666
Arun @Charakan @Asha_EK Try to get tht god concept out. U will enjoy tht freedom. send t link when u use my tweets. will read & comment @arunpillai666

So do we believe in God because our parents instilled in us the fear of God?

Does belief in God make us better or worse as humans?

Will we be freer if we throw these fetters that binds us to God? More free to do well or to do evil?

What about those atheists turned believers?

What is that draws us to God?

Personally for me God has been real in my life. He was always an unseen force guiding me through the rough times of my life. He is someone to whom I talk daily. Even otherwise when one look at nature and it’s loveliness how many of us cannot but help send a silent note of gratitude to the one who made all this. If His creations are so perfect and beautiful won’t He be the ultimate? Or when we see the good deeds from around us who really inspires them ? There must be some remnant of the “God particle” in each one of us which makes us question His presence itself. Or when we the evil around us dont we want a reference point of goodness? Is this ultimate goodness only a myth?

As for the atheists, their unbelief might have been passed over from their parents or they must be seeing the senselessness of religion and steering far away from it. Organized religion has turned many away from God completely. Look at the recent attack on a helpless girl from Pakistan just because she wanted to study! Was she not shot in the name of God? Can someone believe in such a God? Can a loving God do such senseless acts?

Organized religion has done every evil on this earth in the name of God. If God is good how did it end this way? How did those who learn about him practice ways to do  more evil than good?

Guess these questions shall remain unanswered while many continue to believe in Him while many others shun this concept called GOD.

I hope my readers too would shed more light on this topic. 

Why did they turn towards or away from God ?

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