Monday, March 16, 2009

Reverse Social Security delivery in India by ChandraBabu Naidu

The devastating years of the recession years began from 1937-38 under the Roosevelt era . The Social Security Act was drafted by President Roosevelt's committee on economic security, the act was an attempt to limit what were seen as dangers in the modern American life, including old age, poverty, unemployment, and the burdens of widows and fatherless children. By passing this act, President Roosevelt became the first president to advocate the protection of the elderly. The act aside addressing several factors of old age , retrials , health care etc also took into account reaching out to the unemployed with assistance from the government.

At many countries the ability of the government to take care of the citizens in their hour of need and create humane conditions where basic necessities of people are taken care of have become the gold standard that developing and third world countries aspire for in todays times. Tax paying people in the third world countries yearn for a layer of protection, insurance , providence etc when they face dire situations like the impending deep recession looming large and yet to hit with impact in countries like India.

While Roosevelt 's government made provisions and created the social security act by well thought of public policy , India seems to be heading towards providing social security to a certain sections of the vast billions of people in a peculiar manner.

Even if i were to word this phase of the blog as a satire there is an icing on the cake as the poor often times are exploited are at the receiving end of the goodies during the great general elections.

Free soaps like the record load waiver dished out by the ruling UPA or prevention of increment in petrol and LPG ( In Andhra ) prices giving the much needed cover to the common man against steep inflationary pressure is a respite indeed. At least to some. And these are always welcome.

Be it color TV's or 2 rupees rice schemes or loan waivers or free power or free laptops (as promised by the ever in waiting PM ) people have come to benefit greatly and surprisingly some of the prepoll promises have been kept and delivered by the elected representatives.

What Chandrababu Naidu has done by announcing a cash transfer pre poll soap is some thing unprecedented!!! It might defy logic as to how the exchequer will bear the expense but if looked at differently i see a glimmer of hope for the poor who brace them selves every 5 years at the great carnival of general election. If their stars are shining bright then when an government comes down crumbling mid term the goodies come their way earlier than the 5 year wait.

Imagine , Down South of India you cannot afford to put up a poll plank with out the de facto goodies which have become the benchmark manifesto of sorts. If the party i s not offering free power , two rupees rice , loan waivers , COLOR TV's then the party isn't a serious political force. As to daru or local liquor those have been flowing freely at elections since the last 60 years.

Therefore imagine when the political parties are forced to follow Chandrababu Naidus prepoll soap like the 2000 rupees he is promising as cash transfer to women in the family below the poverty line, It is akin to delivering social security in reverse order. Knowing Naidu he is sure to pull of this trick with a commendable degree of aplomb and accuracy of execution. Delivering cash to the poor directly in there ATM at the neighborhood.

At least the we can push the tyranny of the political goons to the back stage. Tyranny of caste , religion and the marathi manoos and ram sene brand of politics played by the present opportunists.

And the cash for votes is lot better than the cash for votes witnessed in lok shabha last year during the debate in nuclear deal times or what happens when several horses are traded to amass numbers to prove majority at the floor of the house.

Be it cash or lap tops one thing is sure , Diebold , NCR , Wincor , Seimens , HP , IBM,Dell , Microsoft et al will get a lot of business , thanks to Advani and Chandrababu :-)

Let there be more elections in India and let there me more free beeies reaching the poor and needy..can we call this democratic innovation in reaching social security to the poor in India.

Until our politician aren't able to tell our citizens ask what they can give the country and not what the country can can give them or until they tell what the can give the nation and not what they get to loot when in the seat of power the poll rigmarole shall continue...jab that the end nahi hoga ......abhi picture baki hai mere dost !!!!

Friday, March 6, 2009


The onus of being the world’s largest democracy with the added concoction of being a rich cauldron of myriad set of representations from a multitudes of cultures, social sects, religions and economic demography’s make India’s trysts with the upcoming elections a massive fan fare even if the functional side of democracy is in a state of rigor mortis.

Such is a convoluted state of coalition that even the demonic spectre of the 14th Lok Sabha seems like a serene plausibility in hind sight.
Only last year we saw a year long campaign of the democratic primaries and then the campaign between the Republicans and Democrats play out in such organized manner on global stage. Yet as when we look forward to seeking a mandate from the electorate in India we are hardly certain on who is in bed with whom. More so who is with whom, why?

This will be a watershed year in Indian politics where the party's will focus their energy no as much on winning on their own , rather preempting the opposing party to come to power by forging illicit and irrational coalitions.

It will be intriguing to read the election manifestos and furthermore quizzical to decipher the ideologies. More than ever the citizen of our country will be recipients of tasteless overtures and jarring tunes played by the corrupt pied pipers seeking a seat of power in today’s changing times. To ad to the authenticity one party has secured the rights of the “Jai Ho” Number while conveniently it left partner for 90 % of last term at office.

Even in the quagmire of choices of electoral mandates there are obvious lynch pins which will gravitate attention of the voter and the (umeedwar) aspirant. Secularism, Terrorism and Recession.

A responsible national party will play sacrilege of secularism with unashamed chutzpa. Again. A temple that they will conveniently remember to build even as the temples of commerce and financial institutions world over crumble like a pack of orchestrated cards triggering the worst recession of our times.

The party chronic in ailment of dynasty politics awaiting for a righteous son to rise to the occasion even as the wont of the masses is to see the dance of the charming daughter in the ragging ring of politics. Yet the combative Italian widow who emulated a five years a coalition towards a successful full term what was managed by a seasoned octogenarian last time around remains the czarina in charge.

We might be pardoned for expecting a young Turk at the helm of you heard “the prime minister in waiting” until you realize that it is all about the old mans cherished dream to lead the nation in its 60th year of independence with a fading vision and misplaced ideology of divisive and religious vote bank strategies. One hopes that the protagonist in chief tires from the temple tirade and mellows to be the inspiring statesman he could well be with those over 5 decade in parliament.

Vote bank strategy it seems which will give birth to a third front - Yet Again!! professing secular and protective economic future even as the contours of their coalition may be as thin as lines drawn with erasable markers on the white board. Essentially anti NDA and anti UPA. Effectively ineffective.

Even as the regional and national parties engage in a slugfest there seems to be no distinct platform for them to anchor their political campaign. None seems to have a manifesto congruently addressing the triple challenges posed by Secularism, Terrorism and Recession.

Another feather in the Indian politics is the impeccable alacrity shown by most party’s to anoint bollywood stars and crest fallen cricketers reincarnating their public life with a fresh taint that they can add to their rich repertoire of chronicled blasphemy. Add to those an assorted set of genial criminals cherry picked with an enviable track record murkier than molasses to have a chance to extend their period of self service from the people now – with an office of profit and an authority of a parliamentarian.

Amidst all this a star impostor shamelessly professing change = chiru and likening him to Obama campaigns tirelessly to get a toe hold in the political stage. Along side the matinee idol there seems many more insipid aspirants throwing their towel in the heat of an Indian summer contest.

Indian have forever lived in the audacity of hope and the country; I believe has progressed in spite of the governments at large.

A representative look at two of the possible leaders who will work for a new India in spite of their failings.

The very hopefuls will try and see a pepper bearded reformist and a once darling of the industrialists in one of the largest south Indian states back at the helm. The only irony being that this time he is bed with the left and a bunch of political urchins seeking a new state. An effective king maker , he can steer clear of the muck and lend stability if he has a sizable mandate. A plausible alternative.

Another bearded messiah from the saffron brigade, the now darling of the economists will attempt to shrug his eerie train of the past and focus on the economic express, in the role of a political in charge in the state of India’s financial capital.The masses are only waiting for his nod for anointing him to the country s top job. May be the callings of sanitized secular leader.

Even as we expect these minor mandates, as it rolls up we as Indian must vote for a decisive ballot so that a single largest party emerges with a comfortable lead. Else a fractured mandate will fracture the very spine of the greatest possibility of what can be India’s century of world leadership. Now this is what I call the “Audacity of Hope”. – Jai Ho ! Vote Karo !

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Celebrating the Mozart from Madras

I have always wondered why the best and the brightest from the east folk to west to seek intellectual legitimacy . In India a brilliant prospect at School would it seems
Being a self professed Oscar maniac following the gods delivering acting and directorial performances.I always found that it is very very hard to convince the members of the academy for an Oscar recognition. Even if you are one of the worlds biggest stars | Tom Cruise or Will Smith with a towering performance like the one from "In Pursuit of Happiness" only the deserving discerning next performance captures the academy's eyes. And a cult/star or next gold standard is anointed. Unarguable and well accepted across the globe thereafter.

How else do we explain the fact what most of whom who including yours truly consider Robert De Niro as the greatest living actor to have been nominated 5 times and won only two oscars in a 6 decade career. Or the legend of Merlyin Streep nominated 15 times yet only winning twice. Be it Brando, Pacino,Jack Nicholson, Sean Penn,Dustin Hoffman,Tom Hanks etc were not successful convincing the academy not more than twice or rarely thrice.

Against this backdrop just imagine the enormity of the accomplishment by the man with the midas touch from Madras. Two Oscars . And Boy he belongs rightup there in history books forever.

But there are a few lakhs of Indians like me who always knew this right from the 1990's that this lad will rock on brighter as years pass by. Yes we are happy that the spotlight is on the chap from chennai today. We will just add to say "This was long over due" Dont you agree ?

There inst a particular genre that you can bracket the works of the musical genius. He revels and enthralls us in every genre with the same impact.

As a person he seldom gets swept by the adulations and has always kept his feet firmly on Terra fer ma.

So here are a few strains from A R Rehmans factory which came out long back but failed to conjure the madness what a "Jai Ho " did so famously in the recent days.Brace your self here goes the list from my biased mind:-

1. Yeh Jo Desh Hai Mera , Swades hai mera - SWADES.
2. Yunhi Challa Hum Rahi - SWADES.
3. Ishwar Allah - 1947 Earth
4. Yeh Jo Zindagi Hai - 1947 Earth
5. Mitwa - Laagan.
6. O Palanhaare - Laagan.
7. Suna Nahi - 12KA4
8. Khamoshiyan Gungunane lage -12KA4
9. Bharath Humko Jaan Se Pyara Hai - Roja
10.Yeh Hasin Wadiyan - Roja.
11.Roja Jane Mann - Roja
12.Desh Mere - Legend of Bagath Singh
13.Sarfaroshi Ki Tananna - Legend of Bagath Singh
14.Mein Albeli - Zubeida
15.Piya Haji Ali - Fiza
16.Aaware Bhawre - Sapnay
17.Khabi Neem Neem - Yuva
18. Khuda Hafiz - Yuva
19. Dil Se Re - Dil Se
20. Aye Ajnabhi - Dil Se
21.Chaiyan Chaiyan - Dil Se
22.Ishq Bina - Taal
23. Luka Chuppi - Rang De Basanti
24. Aarziyan - Delhi 6
25. Azeen O Shaan Shanehshah - Jhoda Akbar

Yes- the above is a very limited showcase of the Genius while several numbers dropped out with the paucity of cramming them under best 25 list. I haven't also taken into account the treasure work AR Rehman created for Tamil Cinema.

A R Rehman, You truly are a Shahenshah a Shaan from our dear mother land India. I am glad i have chosen your genius two decades earlier than the world did. To motivate and conjure the patriotic spirit of the country. Realize the lilting tunes to ignite and fulfill a feeling of mushy romance during my youth. Dwell in the depth of history with the deep strains of your classic scores.

After close to two decades of joyous times behind me following your generous craft and I look forward to the next three decades with bated breath.