Saturday, January 30, 2010

Equal Share to Daughters in Inheritance

During 1983 elections, Telugu Desam Party promised that, if it comes to power, it would give equal share to daughters in the inheritance of the father. Nadendla Bhaskara Rao was the main reason for this point in the manifesto.

To fulfil this promise, Hindu law should be amended. To amend the Hindu law, atleast half of the states should accept it, and the bill should be passed in the Parliament. But, N.T.Rama Rao was in hurry and introduced this bill just for Andhra Pradesh. The bill was passed in A.P. Assembly and got acceptance from the President.

Nadendla says, this will not be valid in the court. Since, there is no provision in Hindu law for this. In the court, only Hindu law is valid, and general resolutions and G.O.s are not valid. Eventhough, NTR boasts that, he introduced this, it is still not valid in the court.

Taken from Naa Jeevitha Prasthanam (My Life Journey) by Nadendla Bhaskara Rao

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

NTR Murder Attempt Drama

This is taken from the book, Naa Jeevitha Prasthanam (My Life Journey) by Nadendla Bhaskara Rao.

When Telugu Desam government finished one year ruling, N.T.Rama Rao wanted to celebrate it, and they made arrangements in Lalbahadur Sastry stadium in Hyderabad.

Many VIPs including governor came to that function. Nadendla Bhaskara Rao attended that function and sat in VIP enclosure. N.T.Rama rao sat near by Nadendla. When everyone is fully immersed in listening to music, suddenly one person started shouting Indira Gandhi Jindabad and attacked N.T.Rama Rao. By that attack, Nadendla's spectacles fell, and by the time he put it back, NTR showed his thumb which is bleeding. Nadendla asked NTR to go to hospital. But, NTR did not listen to that, and went to the musician and appreciated him. Then, he went home, and Nadendla accompanied him. NTR put one lemon to that finger, and Nadendla forced him to go to a hospital. They went to NIMS hospital, and at the steps NTR pleaded Nadendla to go home, and Nadendla left. Since that day, NTR started showing everyone his thumb with lemon. He used to say that, Indira Congress people tried to kill him, but, due to god's grace, he escaped the death.

The person who tried to kill NTR was Mallela Babji and he belongs to Guntur district. NTR associates and Chandrababu wanted to put case against Nadendla, because Nadendla also belongs to Guntur district, probably he was behind this. But, they did not succeed in that. Finally, they put the case against Mallela Babji only. In the court, NTR told the judge to leave him, since he has done out of his kiddish nature.

Later on, Nadendla came to know that, Chandrababu and one more police officer, who later on became minister in Chandrababu's ministry (Vijaya Rama Rao) asked Babji to do this drama, and in return they would give a job and Rs.3 Lakh. Babji himself told this to Nadendla.

After Babji was released, he started pressuring Chandrababu for a job. Chandrababu temporarily put him as attender under Guntur district parishat chariman Sakkurti Ramaiah, and later on he was removed. After Babji lost his job, he asked Chandrababu for Rs.3 Lakh. But, he was scolded and beaten by Chandrababu and was not given money. After that, Babji called Nadendla and wanted to meet him. But, Nadendla rejected that. After few days, it came in news that, Babji suicided in Vijayawada. From the suicide note, C.I. had put case against N.T.R., Chandrababu and S.P. Before he submitted it to court, D.G.P. went to Vijayawada and torn all the case papers and suspended C.I.

All these incidents were disclosed in assembly by then M.L.A., Vangaveeti Mohana Ranga. NTR did not have any other option other than starting Justice Sreeramulu Commission.

Justice Sreeramulu enquired many witnesses including Nadendla. Nadendla told everything that he knew as it was. NTR dissatisfied with the witnesses that Justice Sreeramulu is recording, and he discontinued that committee. Justice Sreeramulu had already written the judgement that, Mallela Babji's incident was a drama. That judgement is still in the secretariat. Later on Justice Sreeramulu joined Telugu Desam Party.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Mail to Daggubati on The other side of Truth

This is the email that I sent to Dr.Daggubati Venkateswara Rao garu on "The other side of truth". I could not find his email address, so, I sent it to his wife D.Purandeswari.

Hello Dr.D.Venkateswara Rao garu,

First let me congratulate for writing the book, "The other side of truth". I specially want to congratulate you for releasing this book on your website for free. This is one great step that you had taken, which everyone should follow. I know many hypocrites who says, they are not writing books for money, but never release the books for free. Even the books of Mahatma Gandhi came to public domain, only because of the expiration of copy right of the books. You are an ideal person in that. Let's hope others also follow you in this.

When you announced that, you are going to write a book before the elections, I felt you should release the book before the elections itself. But, after reading the book, I think you have done the correct thing by releasing it after the elections. Since, there are no elections in the foreseeable future, it is clear that, you will not get any political advantage by doing this. Had you released this book before the elections, there may be impression that, for political advantage, you might have written incorrectly. Now, we can believe everything that you have written.

There are two mistakes that I observed in the book. I hope you will correct these mistakes in your next print.

First one is, in the chapter, "NTR wins struggle, regains kingdom", you mentioned that, B.J.P. won only two seats. One was Mr.Vajpayee and another one was Mr.Janga Reddy. Actually, in that elections, even Mr.Vajpayee lost. The other M.P. who won from B.J.P. was A.K.Patel from Mehsana (Gujarath).

Second one is, in the chapter, "Rajiv Gandhi Assassinated", you mentioned that, V.P.Singh was the prime minister of India in 1991. But, V.P.Singh became Prime Minister on 2nd Dec 1989, and he resigned on 10th Nov 1990. For the first half of 1991, the Prime Minister was Chandrasekhar, and for the second half, the Prime Minister was P.V.Narasimha Rao.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

Quotes From the Book 2 States by Chetan Bhagath

Anyway, I’d heard Citibank had four hundred vice-presidents to accommodate careers and egos of hundreds of new MBAs that joined every year.

Devesh, like anyone who works in HR, had never taken a real decision in his life.

When in doubt, the pretty girl is always right.

(His Parents) They’d have a problem with anyone I choose (for marriage).

(Mother of Punjabi Boy) These South Indians don't know how to control their daughters. From Hema Malini to Sridevi, all of them trying to catch Punjabi Men.

I was his trophy to be sold in the market to the highest bidder. (for marriage)

Kamala said, we should not buy anything major until you get married. We don't want duplicate items.

(One North Indian Woman says) God has given them (South Indian Girls) a brain, and nothing else.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Telugu Movie Anjaneyulu - Jayaprakash

In the telugu movie, Anjaneyulu, there is one character that is very close to Dr.Jayaprakash Narayan.

Brahmaji is a journalist in HMTV. He tells his manager that Chief Secretary Mr.Jayaprakash is resigning, and he wanted to take a live interview with him. But, the manager does not agree to that. With the help of Hero Raviteja, he takes live interview when the manager is not around. The Ex-Chief Secretary explains the problems in the governance. Eventhough he wants to develop the state, still, the politicians do not allow him to do anything. For one question of Brahmaji, he clearly says that, there is no personal problem with any politician. It is just that, he wants the state to be corruption-free. After the resignation, he wanted to reach the people and increase the awareness.

Starting from the name, the entire role is very close (almost identical) to Dr.Jayaprakash Narayan. The role was played by none other than Prakash Raj, who lived in that role.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Why Local Governments May Not Work In The Present Form?

Many intellectuals are fighting for giving full powers to Local governments, and making MLAs and MPs as nominal in the local development. From the decentralization point of view, this is a good move. But, doing this in the present circumstances may give very bad results in the long run.

Why Giving More Powers to Local Government Solves Many Problems?

Right now, the Municipalities and Panchayats (Local Governments) have limited power. Even for their local activities, they may have to get approval from the concerned minister or Chief Minister. Each area in the state has different type of problem. It can be anything like Education, drinking water, Roads etc. It is difficult for the state to come up with a single plan for different problems at different places. The best way is, allocating some fixed amount to each Municipality and Panchayat based on the population, and let them decide on how to use that money. By this, they would use the money for the main problems they are facing.

Right now, the situation is so bad that, a sarpanch does not have enough power even to make a small road in their village.

What will happen, if Local Governments are given funds directly, and nothing else is changed

There are many panchayats with population less than 5000. They have only sarpanch as the elected representative and there are no wards in that. If the sarpanch is good, then the panchayat would see good development. If the people in that village want to have development, they would elect good sarpanch.

In Municipalities, it will not be that easy. Since, the chairman would be indirectly elected by the councillors. Not only that, as Ex-Officio members, MLAs and MPs also have voting powers in the election of Chairman. If one observes everything at the municipality level, it would be clear that, state politics is nothing when compared to municipality level politics. Motion of Confidence and Motion of No-Confidence are very common. Many times, the chairman asks one of his/her party members to put Motion of No-Confidence against him/her. The reason is, If there is no-confidence motion, and it is defeated, then they cannot put another no-confidence motion for one year. So, many chairpersons put no-confidence motion, so that, there will not be any problem for one year.

At the state level, even if there are huge differences between the leaders in the government, still, they never put no-confidence motion. Irrespective of how many differences are there between the leaders, to the opposition parties, they represent as a single party. But, that is not the case at Municipality level. At Municipality level, nothing matters other than becoming chairman or Vice-Chairman. Even the parties high command do not interfere that much. Even if it does, it is mainly based on the money given by the different members and not by anything else.

One may be able to contest for the assembly very easily from any place (probably except from Pulivendula) in the state. But, it is not that much easy to contest in the local elections. There will be pressures from all sides. It is little difficult for anyone to contest in the local elections unless they have some background/money/power.

Even when the municipalities do not have any power or money, if the situation is like this, what happens, if all municipalities get huge money? I am not optimistic that, it would be utilized that much efficiently.

Direct elections for Municipalities

Unless the chair-person is elected directly, there will not be any change in any Municipality except increase in fighting to become chair-person. If the chair-person is directly elected, and if people elect a good leader, then that area would be developed. Otherwise, it will not be.

But, this approach also has a major drawback in the long run. If the person is very good, and developed the town, and if he/she contests for the Assembly elections, then most probably, he/she would win and enter the assembly. People think that, if the person is doing very good at the town level, he/she can do much better, if he/she enters assembly. This thinking is not correct.

There is a big difference between ruling a town and a state. It is not from the perspective of scale, but many other things. For the head of the town, what they have to take care is, primary and secondary education, roads, water, sanitation etc. They have to solve the local problems in the daily life of people. But, the head of the state has different set of problems. He/She has to come up with policies which will lead to the growth. They have to come up with policies on different sectors like education, transport, agriculture, industrialisation etc. The policies also depend on whether the leader follows socialism or capitalism.

For assembly elections, everyone must vote for the party (based on the present top 5 leaders of the party), and for local elections they should vote based on the person.

If we take the example of Nehru, he was a very good person. It is very hard to find negative points. But, still, his policies were not proper. If people like Nehru lead the country at all times and at all levels, his policies may work. But, otherwise, they do not work. Because of his policies, the percentage of GDP of India is reduced by half by 1991. Now, the present GDP of India with respect to the world is almost same as what it was in 1947.

To lead a country or state, we need someone who knows how to develop the state/country and takes it in that direction. If somebody is developing the state aggressively, then even if that person corrupts, it may not be an issue. For example, leader A, in 5 years time, increased the state revenue by Rs.10,00,000 crore, than the projected revenue with the old policies. He corrupted an amount of Rs.10,000 crore. Leader B did not do any corruption, and increased the state revenue by Rs.1,00,000 crore. I always prefer Leader A to B.

The entire dynamics change a lot from a town to a state. So, a good person at a town level may be a bad person at the state level.

What can happen, if full power is given to Local Governments

  • A party which wants to develop the state came to power.
  • It changed the elections in Municipalities and Corporations as direct.
  • It gave all the funds to the elected Chair-person/Mayor, and revoked all the powers from MLAs.
  • The government ruled that, all the MLAs should do only what they are supposed to do, i.e., coming up with policies in different ministries to develop the state.
  • All Chair-Persons/Mayors developed their area (Much better than their previous chair-persons/Mayors).
  • The MLAs came up with good policies and the entire state got changed.
  • In the next elections, all the chair-persons/Mayors contested for MLA elections.
  • If the sitting MLA and Chair-person/Mayor contests in the election, who would win in this scenario?
    Without any doubt, the Chair-person/Mayor would win in the elections. Since, most of the indians, would vote for a person who gave a water connection without taking bribe rather than the one who came up with a policy which reduced their monthly expenditure by 10%.
  • After the elections, all the MLAs who changed the state by bringing good policies will sit at home, and all the Chair-persons/Mayors sit in the assembly and make the policies.
  • If they do not have good knowledge on the policies, or if their goodness was an investment for future corruption, then it will lead to a bad situation for the stae.
  • Even if they have good intentions and keep the old policies introduced by the government, there is no guarantee that, he/she would be elected again to the assembly, because the present chair-person/Mayor would be seriously trying to become an MLA next time.

Instead of giving full power to the Chair-person/Mayor, if full power is given to MLA/MP, then it can be sustainable. Eventhough there are drawbacks there as well, but, atleast if the person does some good things to his/her area, he/she would be elected again, and his/her party may form the government. The party which is in power, can force their MLAs/MPs to do some good things to their locality, and by that, they can form the government again. Otherwise, they cannot form the government again.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Hindi is Not Our National Language

According to the constitution that came into effect on 1950 January 26th, Hindi and English are the official languages of the Union. After 15 years (from 1965 January 26th onwards), Hindi would be the only official language.

Lal Bahadur Sastry introduced the bill The Official Languages Act, 1963 (which later amended in 1967), which provides for continuing the use of English in official work even after 25th January 1965.

In late 50s and early 60s, in Tamilnadu, there was a movement against Hindi. Tamilians did not like to be forced to learn Hindi. At that time, Nehru promised them that English would continue to be the official language, eventhough only one state (Tamilnadu) is asking for that. This was one reason, and not the only reason for the bill introduced by Lal Bahadur Sastry.

Debate in Rajya Sabha in September 1959

Debate in Parliament on the report of the Committee of Parliament on Official Languages. The then Prime Minister, Shri Jawahar Lal Nehru assured the House that neither will there be any hindrance on the use of English as an associate language nor will there be fixed any time limit for it. All the languages of India are equally respected and are our National Languages.

Neither the Constitution of India, nor any Indian law defines any National Language. If we take what Jawaharl Lal Nehru said in Rajya Sabha, then all the 22 scheduled languages can be considered as the National Languages. The 22 schedule languages defined by Indian Constitution are

Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Dogri, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili, Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Oriya, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Santali, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu and Urdu.

Update: On Jan 25th 2010, Gujarath High court gave ruling that, Hindi is not our National language.

The Insider by P.V.Narasimha Rao

Sunday, January 10, 2010

How Incentives Matter

Live Mint has a nice article on the effects of different activities from the perspective of an economist.

Why death penalty for rape is not a good thing?

Why Mafia encourages prohibition of liquor?

Why Mumbai under world was badly hit after the liberalization?

A must read article

Sent by Ankur.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Media and Police

I was reading the book Ramoji - Chivaraku Migiledi (The one that lasts till the end). It was about Ramoji Rao, and was written by Cherukuri Chandramouli, son of Ramoji Rao's elder brother. In that book, Chandramouli criticized Ramoji Rao for using his news paper (Eenadu) and ETV Channels for his own development rather than for the people.

I agree that, Ramoji Rao has used Eenadu to promote one political party. We also have to see, how much he sacrificed the journalism values for that, and also when compared to other news papers and TV channels. If anyone compares all the media with a neutral mind, it would be very clear that Eenadu is the one which is giving more value to journalism, and is giving better news.

I am not saying that, since Eenadu is better comparatively others, we can ignore all the bad things done by that. When we have to criticize a news paper or TV channel, we should first criticize the one which is doing more harm to the society, rather than the one that is doing least harm to the society.

Dr.Jayaprakash Narayan almost said, if we close all the TV channels, state would become normal. It took me some time to realize this.

Specifically in the last one month, almost all (Telugu) TV channels raised sentiment issues, and showed bundhs, riots, and many other similar things extensively. But, they are not showing the steps that government is taking for more than a minute (except Rosaiah's speeches). When there was a bundh last time, police arrested 800 people as a precautionary measure in one day. I am wondering how many channels emphasised this? If they show riots in different areas for 12 hours (for the remaining 12 hours, there will be discussions on riots with different people), they hardly show a minute about the actions by the police on these riots. In a remote village, if one person throws a stone at a small shop, that gets more focus and time than 800 people getting arrested. If media gives enough importance to the police actions also, then all the riots would be stopped immediately.

If all these news channels are shut for atleast a few days, then the peace would restore automatically.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Call to ICICI Customer Care

Customer called ICICI Customer Care for some issue with the credit card. After resolving the issue, representative started her usual conversation.

Rep: Sir, You have an exclusive offer for your credit card. Shall I tell you the offer.

Customer: Go ahead.

Rep: We are offering Protection Plan for your credit card. In case, if you lose your credit card, we offer an insurance of upto Rs.50,000. blah. blah. blah. blah. It costs only Rs.99/month, and you get protection of upto Rs.4,50,000.

Customer: I am not interested.

Rep: May I know the reason?

Customer: I don't need it.

Rep: Sir, it is offering protection of upto Rs.4,50,000. May I know the reason why you are not interested?

Customer: I never lost any card till now. I don't need it.

Rep: Sir, if you lose it, then it would be helpful. May I know the reason why you are not interested?

Customer: I am not interested.

Rep: May I know the reason.

Customer: Standard Charterd Bank is offering life time free Credit Card. Can I ask the representative to meet you?

Rep: I am not interested.

Customer: May I know the reason?

Rep: I already have credit card.

Customer: This is life time free credit card. You don't need to pay anything.

Rep: I am not interested.

Customer: May I know the reason?

Rep: Thank you for calling ICICI.

Eventhough starting from Standard Charterd bank, this is fiction, I really want to talk like this whenever they ask me for reason for anything.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Airtel - Automatic Calls

I got an automatic call from Airtel. Generally, whenever I get an automatic call, I disconnect it immediately. But, I wanted to hear it once, and switched on speaker phone, and continued with my work. It said, "This is a pre-recorded message from Airtel. Press 1 to listen to Telugu, and Press 2 to listen to English, and Press 3 to listen to Hindi". I did not press anything. It repeated the message for 3 times, and then it got disconnected.

What I cannot understand is, why would the caller expect the receiver to press buttons? I have received many forward mails which asks to do not press any buttons if anybody calls you. I don't know what all can the caller do, if the receiver dials what he/she was asked. But, there is some fear factor, and not everyone is interested in dialing whatever the caller ask. If Airtel expects the receiver to dial, how many are going to dial? Cannot they select the language that the user selected last time while calling the customer care, or even alternate languages when they call the same number again.