Sunday, August 27, 2006

Saying No to Forests

Adivasis have votes. Elephants and tigers do not. Besides, as we can see from our rivers, forests, mountains and even our cities and towns, the average Indian could not care less about the environment. So it will be easy to push through a law that will benefit nobody except powerful timber mafias and poachers. Long after Sonia Gandhi and Dr Manmohan Singh have been kicked out of power they will be remembered in the footnotes of history books as the two people most responsible for destroying India’s forests. It is not just about elephants and tigers, it is about turning India into a wasteland.
- Simple living, or zero thinking?, Tavleen Singh, Indian Express, 02 July 2006

Taking a Hike

The Union Cabinet on Friday decided to substantially increase the salaries and allowances of members of Parliament. The total package is estimated to cost the exchequer Rs. 60 crores a year. Priyanranjan Dasmunshi described the increases as being a measure to improve the efficiency of the MPs in discharging their responsibilities. - The Hindu, 20 August 2006
The Salary, Allowances and Pension of Members of Parliament (Amendment) Bill, 2006, which was introduced Tuesday, was passed by a voice vote with Left parties opposing its passage, saying that it was an embarrassment for the MPs to decide their own salaries. -, 23 August 2006

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Flying in the Future

Now I’m pretty sure that there’s not going to be a storm of outrage from the business traveler community about the fact that they can’t look over their PowerPoint presentations or financial spreadsheets while cruising at 30,000 feet - the security of the airplane has far greater importance - but it will be both an inconvenience and a worry. -, 11 August 2006


‘‘For asking votes all these politicians will reach you anywhere. But in the past four days no one came to help us. If they come now we will beat them to pulp. We are all angry. Why has this happened? Don’t other cities have dams?’’ one of them asked. – Indian Express, 13 August 2006

Duck Season

This much lobbying could have got Sharad Pawar in the Team!

Ganguly has now been included in the list despite poor form with the bat in the county championship in England, which in other words means that if he was dropped from the team for being out of form, he has not been in good touch in county cricket either to come back in the team. Then on the basis of which criteria have the national selectors named Ganguly in the probables’ list can be anybody’s guess. –, 9 August 2006

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Owners Embarassment Neighbours Envy

Surprisingly, Natwar Singh is still wanted, if not by the Congress, then by the BJP & SP. Strange thing - Politics.

Not Saral Anymore

The tax department has rushed to amend the ‘Saral’ Form 2F and demand detailed cash-flow statements with opening and closing balance. The presumption is that every salaried person is a tax-evader who has made loads of money on the capital market and is hiding it in undeclared bank accounts. Salaried people have no scope for evasion or falsification since the tax is directly deducted.

Why hound and penalise all salaried employees by asking for detailed cash flow statements or opening and closing balances? How is it in the nation’s interest for tax payers to be treated like potential evaders and petty scamsters when there is daily evidence of rampant corruption in most government decisions especially those involving politicians and big business?
- Perils of alienating honest tax payers, Sucheta Dalal; Indian Express, 31 July 2006

Just Got Lapped

A month after the serial blasts in Mumbai, the police probe appears to have hit the wall even as authorities claim that they are leaving no stone unturned.
- Indian Express, 11 August 2006
Why should anyone be deterred from executing another round of blasts in Mumbai trains when he sees that those caught for the blasts executed 13 years ago are well and kicking; when he sees that their lawyers have been able, and with such ease, to ensnare Government prosecutors in the courts?
- Arun Shourie, Indian Express, 02 August 2006

Saturday, August 05, 2006


Thanda hai par ganda hai yeh!!!

Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) came out with a fresh study claiming the presence of 'pesticide cocktail' in 11 brands of soft drink giants Coca Cola and PepsiCo. The new findings, publicised after testing 57 samples of 11 soft drink brands of Coca Cola and PepsiCo collected from 25 manufacturing units across 12 states, claims that all the bottles examined were a 'cocktail of 3-5 different pesticides' which was 24 times above the standards finalised by Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS).
Press Trust of India, August 02, 2006

Pakistani Nuclear Bum