it does not belong to any of its numerous caste-factions which consider defeating each other more important than being democratic as against dynastic.
INDIAN NEWS CHANNELS ARE MORE concerned about the frivolous affairs of celebrities, thanks to their race for TRPs The newspapers are imitating them, thinking that is what the readers want.
And in the bargain they have lost their credibility. They remain sources of entertainment and titillation more than serious thinking and ideas. Paid news has become the order of the day, a rule rather than exception. Social media once held a glimmer of hope as sources of serious information, but are now plagued by fake news, propaganda, rumors and manipulation by vested interests.
In this context, therefore, I am sharing here a post shared by a friend on social media. It Continue reading Useless, Futile, Infertile Hype
INDIA, LIKE ALL COUNTRIES IN THE WORLD, had its days of monarchy. The memories of kings and autocratic rulers are still in the of minds people. Some seniors alive today were born in the days of ‘Maharajas’ and ;Nawabs’. But by then these were mere titles devoid of real power.
Power they did not have, as the British were the real rulers, but even after Independence the Constitution of India bestowed on them privileges and privy purses till 1972 as The Constitution (26th amendment) Act was passed only at the fag end of 1971.
Diwan Jarmani Dass, who was a Minister (Diwan) of Kapurthala and
Patiala kingdoms, wrote a book in the ’70s, The Maharajas, which gave a graphic picture of the lavish life of perversion, orgies, debauchery and pursuit of pleasure these ‘kings’ enjoyed , especially in Punjab and the North, in return for allowing the British to rule the country.
There were also very good and progressive kings – mostly in the South. Within days of ascending Continue reading The Uncrowned Queen of India
WAS IT THE ‘BETTER-RED-THAN -DEAD’ philosopher Bertrand Russel who said, “If you are sixteen and not a Communist you have no heart. If you are sixty and still a Communist, you have no head”?
Whoever has said it is absolutely correct. Young hearts are moved by inequality in the society, poverty and helplessness which exist in all countries, though to varying degrees. It is easy to believe that liberalism (Americans equate it with Communism) is the only answer.
Soon ‘leftism’ becomes a dogma. Comrades are split into many groups. One took orders from the Chinese Communist Party and another from the Soviet Union. Another, founded by Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, kept itself alive on the myth that he was still alive. Some more believe that by killing poor police constables and innocent people, the proletariat, they would achieve ‘power through the barrel of the gun’ just because Mao said so.
Everyone is free to think and express as long as it is not a crime. Gurmehar Kaur is right in being not afraid of ABVP. She is free to say her father was killed by India’s war and not by Pakistan’s terrorism. She is free to think India should seek peace even when thousands of Indians get killed in hundreds of terrorist incidents and scores of Indian youth are getting radicalised.
She has freedom of expression, as her supporters say. But they deny the same freedom to those who oppose her views. Sehwag saying his bat scored and not he is ‘trolling’. Tharoor says so simply because she is against ABVP and so is he
No doubt violence by ABVP is to be condemned. Also that by the comrades against it.
The ABVP expelled and sought police against two members who had attacked the Ramjas College students when they glorified a man shouting slogans that India should break up and be destroyed because it executed a man convicted for attacking Parliament.
Older people may remember Youth Congress special trains whose passengers, going to a Congress party convention, used to loot shops at each railway station. As such a train approached, the shopkeepers used to pull down shutters.
Did Congress take any action against them? It did not expel its own ‘leaders’ who killed or instigated crowds to kill, thousands of Sikhs after Indira Gandhi’s assassination. But it harps on riots that followed the Godhra carnage just because Modi was in power in Gujarat.
Gurmehar, a Sikh, may not have been born when 1984 anti-Sikh riots were led by Congress leaders. Or she did not condemn them as she calls herself a “Lion that roars only once.” Only once against India and Hindus, not again.
How many of those condemning ‘trolling of Gurmehar Kaur’ now had condemned the Sikh genocide then? Javed Akhtar is a great poet. He finds anyone who opposes Gurmehar Kaur an ‘illiterate’. All leftists find them intolerant.
You call Modi a dog, a donkey, a ‘feku’ – it is freedom of speech. A joke about Pappu who wants to make potatoes in a factory or extract coconut juice is intolerance.
You abuse me, it is freedom of speech. I reply – it is intolerance.
THE WORLD LAUGHED when Donald Trump, initially unsure of his victory and riled by the higher popular vote Hillary Clinton got, floated a theory that the US election was rigged and declared he would not accept the verdict unless he won.
Conspiracy theories crop up everywhere. The high-pressure campaign in the social media in India in favour of Narendra Modi was attributed by his detractors, mostly of Congress, as the handiwork of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. Later, when BJP won, the Continue reading EVM Conspiracy Theories
Hooked on from childhood
“Why write?”, they question, “No one reads. Who has the time? Facebook and WhatsApp have killed reading.”
That was from my blog post (Tomorrow becomes Today, Dec20, 2016). So get used to writing without expecting anyone to read. I still write, though almost no one reads.
But when I wrote that, a friend responded that in my decades as a journalist I must have realised that writing was like throwing a stone at random – it may hit someone somewhere.
One of the reasons why no one has time to read (post ‘Where Is The time?‘ Jan.13) is their being too busy with Continue reading Facing Facebook’s Downside
Chinnamma sheds tears with television cameras focussed on her. OPS stages a drama at the Amma Samadhi earlier. Hundreds tweet comments and jokes on the power struggle.
Public memory may be phenomenally short, but not short enough to forget a letter of apology by Sasikala declaring her family members who had become power centres and reportedly amassed wealth as ‘personal non grata’ and then see them all there, as soon as Amma died, to take over the house whose whose doors were closed for them.
So the promise in the letter to keep them away was a lie? The humble, grovelling, ‘mixture mama’ was good enough to be CM thrice, but suddenly becomes a ‘traitor’!
How could a people known to be highly intelligent and capable stand the sight of ministers and legislators prostrating before a ‘leader’, see a Chief Minister to be treated like a menial and stopped from seeing the dying leader after going to the hospital every day for weeks or fall for a politics of freebies and sops to voters at tax-payers’ cost?
The social media are flooded with jokes and comments about the political developments in Tamil Nadu, which seem to be driven by tears, melodrama, Twitter tweets, WhatsAppp posts and blatant power-struggle based not on ideology, policies or capability but personality and gimmicks..
Can politics get dirtier?
When I joined a newspaper in 1957 after a few contributions were published, it was under a notion that journalism, in a way, was meant for the betterment of society and therefore was social work, the field I was associated from the age of 14.
It took me decades to realise that I was wrong. The Press of the freedom struggle days has become extinct. Print medium is overwhelmed by the TRP-driven electronic media with its sensationalism and hype. Both, therefore, have no time and space for anything not sensational or ‘hot’ news.
What should be the eyes and Continue reading Our Blind, Frivolous Media