Saturday, September 23, 2017

Modi Promotes Co-Ops to Elevate Farmers

PM Modi has usefully highlighted the benefit of farming co-operatives to improve the lives of small farmers:

http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/co-ops-should-help-farmers-double-their-income-modi/article19731969.ece


Given that farmers are a huge demographic in India, and so many of them eke out a miserable existence on tiny plots, the advantages of co-operatives are multifold, allowing them to pool their efforts and their bargaining power, shoring themselves up through joint efforts.

Oil Prices Set to Drop as Shale Technology Improves

Shale oil producers are improving at a pace which will see significant drops in oil prices:

http://zeihan.com/shale-gets-ready-to-run/

This will provide great benefits to oil-importing countries like China, India, Japan, etc.

Drug-Resistant 'Super-Malaria' Spreading

A new form of 'super-malaria' which is resistant to most drugs is now spreading in East Asia at an alarming rate:

https://globalnews.ca/news/3763036/super-malaria-asia-drugs/

Friday, September 22, 2017

Lefty Elites Combine with Deep State Hawks

Liberal elites from Hollywood are joining forces with anti-Russia hawks in calling for "war" on Russia, yet meanwhile they give China a free pass. Atlanticism makes for strange bedfellows.






This is the same Rob Reiner who used to protest against war in Vietnam, early on in his career:

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Quick notes: Driver-less tractor, Ahimsa milk...

Sunday, September 17, 2017

World’s Emptiest International Airport

Sri Lanka's second-largest airport is designed to handle a million passengers per year. It currently receives about a dozen passengers per day. It has annual revenues of roughly $300,000, but now it must repay China $23.6 million a year for the next eight years. To relieve its debt crisis, the Sri Lankan govt agreed to give China control of a deepwater port in exchange for writing off $1.1 billion of the island’s debt.  
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/13/magazine/what-the-worlds-emptiest-international-airport-says-about-chinas-influence.html

“We always thought China’s investments would help our economy. But now there’s a sense that we’ve been maneuvered into selling some of the family jewels.” ..This will be the story of OBOR down the road.

NYTimes: What the World’s Emptiest International Airport Says About China’s Influence.


Forbes: China's Ghost Town Diplomacy: The Story Behind The World's Emptiest International Airport

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Friday, September 15, 2017

Fwd: Against Occidentalism: A Conversation with Alice Crary and Vishwa Adluri on The Nay Science

must read on how the not-so-innocent german indologists imposed their prejudices on us, just a their descendants like witzel and wendy and sheldon pollock are doing today.

bit heavy duty but extremely intriguing.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: kalyan <kalyan97@yahoo.com>
Date: Fri, Sep 15, 2017 at 6:45 AM
Subject: Against Occidentalism: A Conversation with Alice Crary and Vishwa Adluri on The Nay Science
To:


August 7, 2017

Against Occidentalism: A Conversation with Alice Crary and Vishwa Adluri on The Nay Science

How should we read and interpret texts? And how might the modes through which we read be informed, enriched and revised by our understanding of our cultures of interpretation? These questions have driven the work of Vishwa Adluri and Joydeep Bagchee, doctoral alumni of the Department of Philosophy at The New School for Social Research.
This winter, Anthem Press will publish their second book, Philology and Criticism: A Guide to Mahābhārata Textual Criticism. To mark the occasion, Research Matters presents excerpts of Adluri's conversation with Philosophy Professor Alice Crary. They talk about Adluri and Bagchee's first book, The Nay Science: A History of German Indology (Oxford University Press), the practice of reading and interpreting texts and a history of Indology.
Indology—the academic study of India—originated in Germany and served as a foundation for western academic interpretations of Indian texts and traditions. The Nay Science charts the history of German Indology to show how the nascent discipline was rooted in troubling philosophical assumptions that generated inaccurate readings of the culture it was studying. Against stubbornly persistent biases, Adluri and Bagchee write in favor of a more sincere reading of ancient and Eastern texts—a kind of "innocent reading" that goes beyond a postcolonial critique—that might enable us to meet texts outside the Western Christian tradition on their own terms.
Pressing beyond a critique of the specific history of Indology and its effects on our understanding and our modes of reading ancient texts, The Nay Science offers vital reflections on philosophical and social scientific methods. Adluri says that the book teaches us to, "read texts carefully but respectfully because, if you read them respectfully, they will talk to you."
Adluri also reflects on his training at The New School. On the practice of philosophy, he says: "You have to read every single thing, struggle your whole life to claim the life of an intellectual. If they are competent—perhaps competent is not the right word—if they can hang on and do the work, there is no greater reward than philosophy."

Alice Crary (AC): The occasion for this interview is your magnum opus, the 2014 monograph written with Joydeep Bagchee, The Nay Science: A History of German Indology. I want to sit with you and talk about its significance and implications. I thought we should get some background first—who you are and what you have done since your time at The New School for Social Research's (NSSR) Philosophy Department. Can you tell us a bit about your life and your intellectual work at NSSR and afterwards?

I just uploaded 'Against Occidentalism' to @academia!






Thursday, September 14, 2017

Quick notes: Unsafe tracks, Diabetes reversal...

Bannon Seizes Narrative from Critics

Through his bold interview with 60 minutes, Steve Bannon has regained control of the narrative from his detractors:

http://www.cnn.com/2017/09/12/opinions/how-bannon-turned-the-tables-on-liberals-bauerlein/index.html

Likewise, leaders in the BJP and the RSS need to be able to undertake interviews to properly frame their ideas in context, and seize back the narrative from their critics.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Fwd: Ryan School run 186 schools, exempt from RTE and Christian Chamber of Commerce Award


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Sanjeev Nayyar


Points 1. Ryan International School runs 186 schools in 18 States. Started in 1976. 2. Acc to Shantanu Bhagwat art he has recd foreign funding? 3. Avail of benefits of Art 29 and 30. Is this why benefits were granted to Christian Schools. 4. Schools are exempt from RTE. 5. This is business so why exempt from RTE. Their site https://www.ryaninternational.org/about-us.php

Dr Pinto "acknowledged God's constant guidance in building one of India largest chains of privately owned schools".  Which made me wonder how much of the "success" of such minority-institutions (in particular, Catholic-faith based schools and educational groups) is due to the relative "freedom" they enjoy from government interference and controls (e.g. minority-institutions are exempt from the recent RTE legislation), as well as the generous funding they receive from abroad? More questions.

Of Islamic VC Funds and Christian Chambers of Commerce by Shantanu Bhagwat 8.12.2012

t talked about an "Excellence Award" for 2012 that was bestowed upon Dr Augustine F Pinto (Chairman) and Grace Pinto (MD) of the Ryan Group of Institutions by the Governor of Rajasthan, Margaret Alva.

What was interesting was not the award but the body that was honouring Dr Pinto and Grace Pinto. This organisation was the Christian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Now, up until I was alerted to this news-item, I had never heard of the "Christian Chamber of Commerce and Industry" (nor the "Excellence Award"). But it did remind me of something else I had read more than a year back. Something which I had filed in the hope to dig further when I have more time.

That something was a conference that was held in May 2011 in New Delhi on "Prospects for Islamic Venture Capital Funds in India"

As with the "Christian Chamber of Commerce and Industry", I had never heard of "Islamic Venture Capital Funds" – either in India or elsewhere.

The news-report on the conference was largely innocuous but a few lines towards the end were revealing. They included (emphasis added):

"The fast and unhindered growth of economic disparities, regular occurrence of banking and financial crises, and stock market crashes, the world over, testify to the fact that the interest-based paradigm of banking and finance has grossly failed to ensure sustainable and inclusive economic growth."

The article made all the right noises about ""justly inclusive economic growth", about how the "right of doing business fairly and fearlessly" was a "humanist goal" and "social justice".  Words and phrases like "inclusive", "humanist" and "social justice" always make me sit up and take notice. They also make me a little nervous.

For most of the time, these are but a cloak for something else – usually some kind of redistribution, or other socialism-inspired ideas. Sometimes there is not even pretence of a cloak. But I digress.

Implicit in both these news-stories was the belief or the assumption that Muslims and Christians in India (which is neither Islamic nor Christian; nor Hindu, for that matter) may need some "special" treatment since they perhaps suffer discrimination living in a non-Islamic or non-Christian country – or get sidelined in some other manner.

The first question that came to my mind when I read about the Christian Chamber of Commerce (as well as the Islamic Venture Finance Conference) was this, "What is Christian about a Chamber of Commerce? And what exactly is Islamic about an "Islamic Venture Capital Fund"?

I wondered whether an Islamic Venture Capital Fund will only invest in companies founded by Muslims. If yes, how about companies founded by Muslims where the majority stake is actually owned by non-Muslims?

What about the Christian Chamber of Commerce? Would it welcome non-Christians? Would it charge more fees from them? Would it favour Christians over others?  Or none of these?

But the most important question – which also makes me most uncomfortable – is this, "Have things now come to such a pass that each identity-based group and each "minority" in India feels compelled to organise their own narrow lobbying groups to protect their "interests" and their identities?

Where does this stop? And what does this mean for the "Idea of India"?

Questions, questions and more questions…but few answers.

Jai Hind, Jai Bharat!




--
sent from samsung galaxy note3 neo, so please excuse brevity

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Monday, September 11, 2017

sanjeev nayyar in Conversation with Rajiv Malhotra on issue of DERAS


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Sanjeev Nayyar


Namaste,
 
The conversation expands on my last Monday Rediff article on the issue of Deras. We speak about History of Punjab – Sikhism, How Deras came into existence, Different type of Deras, why conservative Sikhs dislike Deras, Reasons for downfall of Baba Ram Rahim, Drug problem in Punjab and so on.
 
 
Warm Regards
sanjeev
 
 
 

 



--
sent from samsung galaxy note3 neo, so please excuse brevity

Turning the Tables on China

What if Pak & North Korea elope with each other, leaving daddy China behind?




Sunday, September 10, 2017

Quick notes: ID theft, Policy confusion...

  • SSN scare: Your Social Security Number now looks like a time bomb. It Is.  (lesson for India)


  • Memo to Nitin Gadkari: Shift to e-vehicles won’t happen at gun point, govt needs to handhold auto firms


  • Fossil Fuel Deadline: China developing timetable to end sales of fossil fuel cars. 


  • Govt confusing automakers: After 18 months of sudden rule changes (like tax increase for hybrid cars), carmakers ask govt to set clear, stable policies.


  • Dr. Appachanda Thimmaiah: Helping the entire country of Bhutan go organic 


  • Land encroachment in Western Ghats: Approximately 1,65,796 acres of forest land, including 1,04,497 acres in the ecologically sensitive zone of Western Ghats, has been encroached upon. Christist land grab caused pogroms on tribals.


  • Pakistan’s population surges: “The prophet Muhammad asked believers to marry and produce children.” 


  • Extreme weather: As of now, only 2% of India's population is exposed to extreme weather, but by 2100, about 70% of the people will suffer. 


60 Minutes Interviews Steve Bannon

Charlie Rose of 60 Minutes interviews Steve Bannon - who gives excellent insights into his ideological views on US politics and international affairs:

https://www.cbsnews.com/videos/steve-bannon/

Rose gives no quarter to Bannon - but Bannon gives good replies from his side. What's worth paying attention to are his attitudes towards the American Deep State, as well as towards China.

Bannon also gives more of his views on various topics:

https://www.cbsnews.com/60-minutes/overtime/

Wednesday, September 06, 2017

Quick notes: Deglobalization, Indian Hercules...

  • Vernacular remains resilient: English-based Internet helped globalize the world economy in the last two decades; now, with the reverse trend of deglobalization, regional languages are replacing English as means of digital communication. 


  • Putin: Leader in artificial intelligence will rule the world. Future wars will be fought by drones, and when one party’s drones are destroyed by drones of another, it will have no other choice but to surrender.”


  • Gripen vs F-16: Saab links up with Adani to bid to build fighter jets in India 


  • Country's first Hyperloop in AP: Amaravati to Vijayawada in 5 minutes. AP govt signs MoU; feasibility study to start in October


  • No white elephants here: London is now awash with bike-sharing schemes


  • Kodi Rammoorthy Naidu: The Indian Hercules Was A Vegetarian Body Builder.

    Rammoorthy often performed a stunt where he would hold back a motorcar from driving away, with his own strength. One of their performances was attended by Lord Minto – the then Viceroy and Governor-general of India. Minto, amazed by what he saw, is reported to have asked Rammoorthy to perform a stunt with him in the driver’s seat. Minto got into his car, while Rammoorthy attached himself by a pair of chains to the back. True to his name, even with Minto flooring the throttle, Rammoorthy held the car back.


  • Welcoming Rohingyas:


  • Karnataka is reviving Indira Gandhi era socialism: The Indira Canteens will do nothing for the poor, will hurt legitimate businesses, and will be a waste of resources... Not sparing children's playgrounds even.


  • Bacteria getting resistant to antibiotics in poultry farms : A bacterium is said to have developed multi-drug resistance if it fails to respond to three or more antibiotic drugs. About 40 per cent of E.coli and 30 per cent of K. pneumoniae isolates were resistant to at least 10 out of 13 antibiotics against which these bacteria were tested for.



Sunday, September 03, 2017

US Has No Option But to Confront China

Faced with a de facto North Korean nuclear deterrent, the United States has no option but to confront China:

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/09/04/china-says-trumps-trade-threat-over-n-korea-unacceptable-242304

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/commentary/ct-perspec-north-korea-china-goldberg-0904-story.html



Graphene for Water Desalination

Japanese researchers have found a way to make desalination membranes in a very scalable way, out of graphene, the famous monomolecular carbon sheet:

https://www.mri.psu.edu/mri/news/toward-smart-graphene-membrane-desalinate-water

Such developments are positive news for water-challenged countries like India.

India Gets First Woman Defense Minister

Nirmala Sitharaman is India's first female defense minister, taking office at a time of increased border confrontation:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-09-03/india-gets-full-time-defense-minister-in-modi-cabinet-reshuffle

Saturday, September 02, 2017

North Korea May Have Tested H-Bomb

North Korea has apparently conducted another nuclear test explosion, even as it claims to have developed a miniaturised thermonuclear warhead that can be delivered by ICBM:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/north-korea-apparently-conducts-another-nuclear-test-south-korea-says/2017/09/03/7bce3ff6-905b-11e7-8df5-c2e5cf46c1e2_story.html

Apparently the seismic tremor registered at 6.3 - the most violent ever recorded following a North Korean test.

If North Korea has indeed developed a working hydrogen bomb weapon, I'd be worried that it could end up in Pakistan's hands down the road.


Friday, September 01, 2017

Flood Control and Water Management

In the aftermath of the hurricane disaster in Texas, USA, tech companies are getting involved in relief work:

https://techcrunch.com/2017/08/29/tech-companies-harvey-houston-fundraising/


Various countries around the world have implemented innovative solutions for flood control and water management:

https://www.thoughtco.com/how-engineers-stop-floods-177699


Given its annual monsoon flooding, India likewise needs to pay more attention on how to deal with these perennial problems. Given Japan's recent shift towards investing in India, we should leverage their know-how for water management infrastructure.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Japan's Mindset

A feature from Caspian Report on Japan's mindset and foreign policy motivations:



Quick notes: Bhutanese view, Reviving Chabahar...

  • In Kaangress era: India never intervened or even raised its voice in the past, about numerous Chinese incursions into the Bhutanese side, including the more serious road-building activities. This is because they did not affect Indian security, unlike Doklam.


  • Indian role in Afghanistan: An India-Japan-South Korea consortium (with the US as an absent partner) could revive the Chabahar route to Afghanistan and, perhaps, manage the crucial supply chain to support US operations in the region.


  • Induced seismicity: A 2010 study by the China Earthquake Administration found that Three Gorges Dam had triggered about 3,400 earthquakes from mid-2003 to the end of 2009, as well as numerous landslides, representing a 30-fold increase in seismicity. Human induced earthquakes


  • Nano EV: Nano not to be phased out; Tata Motors to re-position it as electric vehicle 


  • David Shulman: The notion that there was a pure Tamil that had no Sanksrit in it is a complete fantasy. There are Prakrit and Sanskrit words in the earliest Tamil Brahmi inscriptions we have. The Tamil Brahmi script has some features peculiar to it, but it’s deeply interwoven with the Sanskrit system.”


  • Padma Shri Aruna Sairam:  Darbar Music Festival



  • Greece, China's colony in Europe: “While the Europeans are acting towards Greece like medieval leeches, the Chinese keep bringing money”

    “Unlike democratic nations that change politicians every few years, the Chinese have a long and steady strategic view. They know what they want”.

    Last summer, Greece helped stop the EU from issuing a unified statement against Chinese aggression in the South China Sea. This June, Athens prevented the bloc from condemning China’s human rights record. Days later it opposed tougher screening of Chinese investments in Europe

    As Greece struggles through record joblessness, Chinese companies use subcontractors on short-term contracts at wages far below what unionized Greek dockworkers are paid.


  • Missionary schools will grab lakhs of poor students from Dera run schools:


  • Jayanthi Sampathkumar, manager at Microsoft:.Ran a marathon in a saree to promote handloom.
  • http://www.thenewsminute.com/article/42-km-9-yards-meet-hyderabad-woman-who-ran-marathon-saree-promote-handloom-67369


PSLV C-39 Mission Failure

The PSLV C-39 mission appears to have ended in failure, with payload lost as the heat shield failed to separate on command, and ISRO cutting the webcast soon after that point.

http://www.news18.com/news/india/isros-attempt-to-launch-eighth-navigation-satellite-from-sriharikota-fails-1506307.html

This ends ISRO's run of 36 consecutive successful launches with PSLV over the past 20 years.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Indian SC Ruling Undermines Cohesion

India's Supreme Court ruling undermines the foundations of India's social fabric:

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/450884/india-court-privacy-ruling-corrodes-societal-glue

China Investing $57Bn in Pakistan

Chinese are showing up in Pakistan in growing numbers as their country invests $57 billion in Pakistan:

http://fortune.com/2017/08/28/china-invests-pakistan/


Meanwhile, Chinese investment in Africa seems to have peaked, as more return home from there:

https://www.ft.com/content/7106ab42-80d1-11e7-a4ce-15b2513cb3ff

Fwd: Why Dera Sacha Sauda draws followers by Sanjeev Nayyar in Rediff.com


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Sanjeev Nayyar


Why Dera Sacha Sauda draws followers
By Sanjeev Nayyar
28 August 2017
 
The backward classes and poor were left out of the prosperity ushered in by the Green Revolution.
The need for a support system and to be part of a larger community was felt.
It is this vacuum that deras like Sacha Sauda filled.
They made the poor feel secure, cared for, loved, provided a support system and gave them dignity, says Sanjeev Nayyar.

 

The violence and deaths that followed Gurmeet Ram Rahim's arrest were unfortunate. My heart goes out to the poor who lost their near and dear ones and those who were injured in the violence.

The question one has heard asked over the weekend is how and why a convicted rapist like Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, a Jat Sikh, has amassed such a huge following.

The honest answer, however, must start with British rule.

The British were grateful to the Sikh princes for assistance received during the 1857 mutiny, and seeing the bravery of the Sikh armies realised they could be an effective buffer between Afghanistan and India.

They replaced Bengali soldiers with loyal Sikhs and Punjabi Muslims, but insisted that only those Sikhs who sported the five Ks, or symbols of Sikhism, could join the army.

Since it was mainly Jat Sikhs who sported the five Ks then, they were the biggest beneficiaries.

The British enforced rigid occupational boundaries by creating 'traditional agriculturists', 'martial races' and 'trading castes'.

The Jats were classified as traditional agriculturists and came to dominate the ownership of land as well.

The other dominant community, Khatris or Kshatriyas, took to education and business. They had also been landholders till the Punjab Land Alienation Act of 1900 forbade them to do so as they were declared a 'non-agricultural' tribe.

Many families got around this artificially imposed caste barrier by raising one or more son as a Sikh, chiefly by having them adopt the name Singh and grow hair/beard to match.

British policy supported forces that divided Punjab into Hindu and Sikh http://www.esamskriti.com/e/History/Indian-History/How-The-British-Divided-Punjab-Into-Hindu-And-Sikh-1.aspx

Their objective was met with the passage of the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabhandak Committee Act in 1925, which resulted in the Akalis having control over gurdwaras in Punjab, and heralded the irrevocable tradition of mixing religion and politics in Punjab.

It also made Jat Sikhs a powerful community.

Backward classes were declared a non-agricultural caste. Thus, they could not own land and had to work as farm labour.

Punjab and Haryana became states in 1966.

Power invariably alternated between the Akalis and Congress in Punjab. However, irrespective of the party, Jats ruled Punjab.

In spite of backward classes believed to constitute over 30 per cent of the state's population, Jats were the dominant political class.

The Green Revolution of the late 1960s benefited Jats the most as they were the dominant agricultural caste.

In the prosperity that followed, the backward classes and poor were left out.

To add to their woes was the insecurities caused by the extremely violent Khalistan movement of the 1980s.

Deras existed earlier too, but the external environment increased the insecurity. The need for a support system and to be part of a larger community was felt.

It is this vacuum that deras like Sacha Sauda filled.

They made the poor feel secure, cared for, loved, provided a support system and gave them dignity.

Put yourself in the shoes of a poor devotee.

It is natural for the poor to seek the blessings of the guru who helps them.

Remember, it is in the DNA of Indians to consciously surrender to a person who they call their guru.

Why does Dera Sacha Sauda have such a huge following?

According to an August 24, 2017 report in Chandigarh's Tribune newspaper, the reasons are four-fold (external link). http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/punjab/why-dera-sacha-sauda-attracts-such-huge-following/456843.html

One, identities of caste and religion cease to exist in the dera.

Two, the humble ranking of dera management. A state is divided into zones, with each zone headed by a man called Bhangi Das.

Three, subsidised food and free rations.

Four, many districts close to Sirsa in Haryana are plagued by knee problems and cancer due to bad quality of water. The dera provided free treatment.2

Remember, Indian religions are not organised and rigid, but amorphous. So people across the country have always flocked to sants in their region.

Within a common spiritual framework, the guru's organisations provided spiritual and emotional support to its followers.

According to a scholar and long-time resident of Jalandhar, "Deras have done outstanding work in social, educational, medical and spiritual fields. The quantum of work done in the last 20 years far exceeds that of religious organisations."

Also, members of a dera become part of a larger community network. It helps them in business dealings, social engagements and even in finding life partners.

Conservative Sikhs oppose deras for many reasons. A person going to a dera invariably does not visit a gurdwara.

Two, there is a financial angle. The money and food-grain that would be donated to a langar at gurdwaras now goes to the dera.

While the orthodox believe in the Guru Granth Sahib as the guru, the deras focus on a personal guru without denying, in any way, the importance of scriptures.

Tension between conservative Sikhs and backward class deras resulted in the murder of Guru Sant Rama Nand in Vienna in 2009.

He belonged to the Dera Sach Khand, inspired by the 15th century spiritual leader Ravidas whose followers belong to the backward classes.

Thousands of followers went on a rampage (external link) in Punjab after the murder. http://blogs.reuters.com/india/2009/05/26/is-caste-behind-the-killing-in-vienna-and-riots-in-punjab/

Sacha Sauda is not the only dera opposed by conservative Sikhs. Radhasoamis are also opposed because they too believe in a personal guru, and ask disciples to do simran of panj nam (five names) which they keep a secret.

They rely on the bani (word) of the Guru Granth Sahib (as also that of Saar Bachan) in satsang, but do not follow the way of devotion observed in gurdwaras.

However, whatever may be the history, violence by the followers of the Dera Sacha Sauda must be condemned in the strongest possible terms.

But, for a lasting solution, we must understand why devotees are willing to lay down their lives for their guru, rather than seeing the violence through the urban English-speaking prism.

It is debatable if the police would have fired on protestors if they were residents of south Mumbai/Delhi, sectors 2 to 11 of Chandigarh, or students of JNU.

Remember, when a rally to protest the violence against Myanmar's Rohingyas at Mumbai's Azad Maidan turned violent on August 11, 2012, in which vehicles and broadcast vans were torched, policewomen were molested, and weapons were snatched from the police, the state government of the day did not allow the police to open fire on the violent rioters. http://www.rediff.com/news/slide-show/slide-show-1-pix-mumbai-protest-turns-violent-vehicles-torched/20120811.htm

This is what former Mumbai police commissioner Julio Ribeiro had to say about the incident (external link). http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/column-what-really-happened-at-azad-maidan-on-august-11-1731988

Now let us look at the political aspects of the dera.

As India liberalised and with the advent of the cell phone, the new generation of backward classes felt confident enough to break free from the Jat-dominated politics of Punjab and Haryana.

With awareness dawned the realisation of the power of their votes.

Jat politicians too sensed the change.

So around 2007, the Haryana and Punjab chief ministers, namely Om Parkash Chautala and Parkash Singh Badal, visited the Sacha Sauda's Sirsa headquarters.

Five years later, Captain Amarinder Singh again sought the baba's 'blessings'.

The Bharatiya Janata Party, a late comer in Haryana's political game, too adopted the same strategy.

So every political party has wooed the Jat Sikh Baba.

The mixture of religion with politics, which started with the passing of the SGPC Act in 1925, continues to this day.

In fact, Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was provided Z-plus security by the United Progressive Alliance government.

Note that it was competitive vote-bank politics between the Akalis and the Congress that gave rise to Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale and a major reason for the terrorism that engulfed Punjab in the 1980s.

Having realised the power of their votes, the poor wanted to break the Jat hegemony over politics.

They tasted blood in Haryana when the BJP appointed M L Khattar -- a non-Jat -- as chief minister.

Unable to deal with loss of power, some hit back through the violent Jat agitation in Haryana.

The Congress in Punjab and the SGPC dislike the Dera Sacha Sauda for various reasons.

One, the Dera supported the BJP-Akali combine in the last assembly election.

Two, in a caste-ridden Punjabi society, 'dera life provides an equal status to all castes'.

Three, the dera unites Hindus and Sikhs, something that conservative Sikhs are against.

Prem Insaan, a resident of Bathinda, said, "Different communities and castes have their own temples and gurdwaras in Punjab and Haryana, but at our dera all are equal."

"The dera advocates humanity. We may be Hindu, Sikh or anything else, but we have failed to end caste divisions in society."

During the recent violence Captain Amarinder Singh has presented himself as an able administrator in comparison to Haryana's Khattar.

Breaking the back of this dera would please the SGPC and conservative Sikhs no end.

Recent events have to be viewed against this backdrop.

The Congress is working to a plan. It desperately wants to win back Haryana, a state where land is highly valued.

After the BJP outsourced Punjab to the Akalis, its supporters had no option but to vote for the Congress.

Unless the BJP becomes active in Punjab and has a chief minister in Haryana who understands that religion and power are intertwined in Punjab and Haryana and finds a way to counter the Jats, the Congress will return to power in 2019.

The affluent classes and political parties must bring the backward classes into the mainstream.

Sanjeev Nayar is an independent columnist, founder, www.esamskriti.com and author of How the British sowed the seeds for the Khalistani Movement before the Indians took over.
He tweets @sanjeev1927

 




--
sent from samsung galaxy note3 neo, so please excuse brevity

China Claims Victory in Doklam

China claims victory over India in Doklam dispute, as India agrees to withdraw troops:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-41070767

Friday, August 25, 2017

With Amazon buying Whole Foods to make a play to dominate the grocery business, I wonder if Indian e-tailers like Snapdeal or Flipkart will take a fresh look at groceries as part of their competitive strategies:


http://money.cnn.com/2017/08/25/technology/business/amazon-whole-foods-strategy/index.html

New Trailer for Blade Runner 2049

Ryan Gosling teams up with Harrison Ford in the continuation of the Replicant saga:




It's interesting to note that director Ridley Scott's other famous movie franchise, Alien, is also set in the same story universe as Blade Runner. The Tyrell Corporation which manufactures Replicants in the Blade Runner storyline is apparently a competitor to the Weyland-Yutani Corporation which manufactures the androids in the Alien storyline.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Quick notes: Right-of-way, Killbots...

  • Muharram has right-of-way: Mamata Banerjee says no Durga idol immersion on Muharram


  • Ghar wapsi in quota case: Conversion good, ghar-wapsi bad according to All India Catholic Union and John Dayal.


  • Overdue: OBC list to be sub-categorised


  • Chinese threat: India tightens power grid, telecom rules. Local firms have long argued against Chinese involvement in the power sector, raising security concerns and saying they get no reciprocal access to Chinese markets.


  • China role in floods? "There was no unnatural rain in neighboring Arunachal Pradesh to trigger such a massive flooding in Assam. We need to know where the water came from. There was also no warning from China. Unnatural release of river water could be a ticking hydrogen bomb".


  • Killbots: Elon Musk urges the UN to limit AI weapons


  • HCCI Explained:



  • Lesson for Modi Sarkar: Economists still can’t decide whether the minimum wage is a good thing. A recent study found that a sharp rise in the minimum wage in Seattle led to job losses and fewer hours for low-wage workers—exactly what supply and demand theory would predict


  • Targeting India, specifically women:


TV Series: Salvation

Over the summer, I've really been enjoying the new TV series Salvation - it's my next favorite after Game of Thrones. The story is about a group of people trying to avert disaster after the discovery that the Earth is in imminent danger from an asteroid collision.

http://deadline.com/2016/10/salvation-cbs-summer-drama-series-alex-kurtzman-1201839868/







The show is styled as a Tom Clancy-esque techno-thriller and is very well-written, with fast-pacing, lots of plot twists and intrigue adding to the suspense. It also has a surprising amount of references to current politics and culture, including an Elon Musk type of hero with a powerful rocket and a vision for Mars colonization, tensions between the superpowers, a volatile US president snarling against the "Deep State", and even covers ISRO cooperating with NASA. The casting for the show is also very good, and even includes some young Indian-American actors in the mix. Microsoft and Amazon are among the sponsors of this TV production.

Fwd: The way around China+Afghan reality check+Floods in India+Drones and UAV Swarming+US misreads rhetoric for reality on North Korea


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Sanjeev Nayyar


1. Trump's Independence Day gesture has political implications': Why India-US talks are 'rattling' China 22.8.17 by Kanwal Sibal
 
2. The way around China 24.8.17 by G Parthasarathy http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/comment/the-way-around-china/456447.html
Across India's eastern shores, China has outmanoeuvred the US, Japan and India by strengthening its political and economic influence in the economic and political policies of Aung San Suu Kyi. It is set to build the strategic port of Kyaukpyu in the Bay of Bengal, while shaping its maritime silk road by taking over Hambantota Port in Sri Lanka. Riding on hubris, China, however, gravely miscalculated what the response of India and Bhutan would be to its intrusion in Doklam.
In the meantime, imaginative diplomacy is required to ensure China is given a face-saving way out from its present predicament.'
 
 
4. Trump pressures Pakistan and engages India in new Afghan strategy: experts 24.8.17 http://en.people.cn/n3/2017/0824/c90000-9259673.html
 
5. Afghan reality check 23.8.17 by zamir akram https://tribune.com.pk/story/1488463/afghan-reality-check/
 
6. Floods in India: A challenge for governance and diplomacy 22.317 by rakesh kr sinha http://www.indiandefencereview.com/news/floods-in-india-a-challenge-for-governance-and-diplomacy/
 
7. Drones and UAV Swarming – more dimensions 23.8.17 by lt gen prakash katoch http://www.indiandefencereview.com/news/drones-and-uav-swarming-more-dimensions/
 
Pyongyang is attempting to split the U.S. from its allies and partners. Ri promised explicitly in a recent statement that no other countries will be targeted by the North's nuclear weapons, unless they join a U.S.-led military attack.
 
9. Playing India separation card a poor choice 24.8.17 http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1062788.shtml
 
10. India shouldn't see Nepal's economy as a strategic battlefield against China's influence 23.8.17 http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1062835.shtml
'If India puts the wrong geopolitical interpretation on economic cooperation between China and Nepal, it will pay a heavy price to win support from the smaller Himalayan country. The economic strength of India, whose GDP is about just one-fifth of that of China, may not be enough to win the competition against China in striving for Nepal's support.'
 
Warm Regards
sanjeev nayyar
to unsubscribe write back



--
sent from samsung galaxy note3 neo, so please excuse brevity

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

silicon valley is now facing a huge housing crisis

https://www.ft.com/content/82bc282e-8790-11e7-bf50-e1c239b45787

--
sent from samsung galaxy note3 neo, so please excuse brevity

Fwd: "Vanishing Hindus of India" - Dr. Saswati Sarkar


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Rajiv 

Good research and excellent presentation on how Residual India is being de-hinduised.

"Vanishing Hindus of India" by Dr. Saswati Sarkar

https://youtu.be/Wr6wrcUzQt4

Hindu Memorial Day observance, Aug. 19th, 2017
Organized by Hindu Mahasabha of America

--
Rajiv Varma
Tel.  +1 (832) 736-5643 | rajiv555 @ yahoo . com | http://www.facebook.com/rajiv555





--
sent from samsung galaxy note3 neo, so please excuse brevity

cambrige university bows to han censorship; later they did rescind

CUP acceded to han threats, but belatedly, after much loss of face, reversed the decision. 

what it means:
1. an intolerant and aggressive group (eg hans or jihadis) always gets their way
2. money talks. brits have no money and will prostitute themselves eagerly


--
sent from samsung galaxy note3 neo, so please excuse brevity

americans binge-drinking to death: leftie agenda for indian women too

there's a virtual epidemic of women getting blitzed (also older people) in the US, which is probably as good a sign as any of a nation and a civilization in decline. 

lefties want 'liberated' indian women to follow.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-alcohol-idUSKBN1AP1VG

--
sent from samsung galaxy note3 neo, so please excuse brevity

good to see a dissenting view on how hans are going to rule the world

hindus most educated in the US

yet our income doesn't even begin to match the huge educational advantage. this must mean glass ceilings, racism and bigotry. 

why we should worry about #nuclear fallout and second order effects

Data Science, AI, and Stock Markets

Here's an old by interesting article on Do-It-Yourself personal algorithmic trading:

https://www.ft.com/content/0a706330-5f28-11e6-ae3f-77baadeb1c93


What was interesting is how it's spurring Mathematicians, Data Scientists, and AI programmers to come up with algorithms and strategies to beat the stock market. There's a direct financial reward and profit motivation here.

Rajeev was talking about how India is behind on AI - well, maybe financially incentivized pursuits like this could be a way to get the naturally competitive Indians into developing their AI talents. It could be a way to tap our natural human resource talent pool for beneficial progress.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Quick notes: India's help, Pakis rattled...

  • Trump’s Request for India’s Help Rattles Pakistan: “By inviting India to be more active in Afghanistan, Trump has confirmed the worst fears of Pakistan’s generals”.


  • Afghan women in 1972: This 1972 photo of women in Afghanistan helped persuade Trump to commit to war in Afghanistan
    https://www.amnesty.org.uk/womens-rights-afghanistan-history


  • Comment on NYT: "Where did you get the bit about the US paying billions to India? A quick google search should help clear this up. India has spent billions of its own in Afghanistan to build roads and infrastructure" - nytcalif.


  • India already helps: India has given $3 billion in assistance since the Taliban government was toppled by coalition forces in 2001. And over the years India, Afghanistan’s biggest regional donor, has built more than 2,500 miles of roads, dams, hydropower plants and the country’s new parliament building


  • Another Comment on NYT: Pradeep Bangalore, India: Thin ray of hope for India always comes from Republicans. Right from JFK, Democrats have unpleasant relationship with New Delhi. Bill Clinton's obsession with Kashmir followed by hard sanctions post nuclear tests hurt Indians. Obama's failure to throttle strategic partnership has propelled Indians to hope the hard hitting current President will do some constructive damage to Pakistan vis-a-vis declaring it a paraiah state.

    Republicans however, other than Nixon, have not failed to recognize India as a strategic Partner. Regan's negotiations to help India find nuclear suppliers is not forgotten. Bush Jr accepted India as a nuclear power by concluding 123 agreement, a watershed moment for India's strategic posture.