Sunday, December 4, 2011

The Politics over the DAM; Kerala and Tamil Politicians are both to blame

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

Tamil politicians are back at their ususal game of barbarous bluster and brinkmanship. Vaigoplalaswami, the leader of one Dravidian faction has even threatened a blockade of Kerala over the Mullaperyar Dam issue. It appears that with the defeat of the LTTE and the return of nornalcy in Sri Lanka, the Western funded Human Rights activists not withstanding ( I wonder why they do not scream at what the White men are doing in Libya, Pakistan and Afghanistan), Tamil politicians need an issue to whip up the cold, insane frenzy of their electorate. The settlement of the Tamil issue in Sri Lanka has deprived them of one milch cow that like kamadhenu could be relied upon to deliver votes. Now they have latched on to the Mullaperyar Dam issue.
Let me begin by stating certain historical and legal facts which the semi literate Kerala and Tamil politicians ignore. First, Tamil Nadu does not have riparian rights over the waters because the Peryar River was diverted from its natural course and made to flow into Tamil Nadu. So Kerala can rightly claim that Tamil Nadu does not possess riparian rights; for some reason they are not doing so. However, I think that on humanitarian grounds, Tamil Nadu must be given its exixting share of water without too much ado. Keral politicians, instead of driving home the legal and tecnical arguments are like tamil politicians whipping up the frenzy of the mob. I was shocked when a highly educated girl sent me a SMS some time back in which she frantically stated that 4 districts of Kerala, including Kochi, in which she lives, is in imminent danger of innundation. I told her that the collpase of the dam was only a figment of the movie maker's imagianation. I do not know whether she was reassured. I am only saying this to show how much panic the Karala politicians have whipped up.
The 999 year lease agreement signed with the then Madras Government is a legal absurdity. The legal rights of the then Madras Government came from the unequal treaties and sanads signed with princely states and Kertala wille well within its legal rights to claim that with Independence thae treaty lapsed. Unfortunately the legal fagility of the argument of the Government of Tamnil Nadu is not being exploited by Kerala. The legal grounds on which Tamil Nadu stakes its claim over the dam is not consistent with the Constitution of India and its federal structure. Tamil Nadu cannot claim administrative control over a dam located in Kerala territory when the safety of the people livining in the downstream dsictricts lie with Kerala. I ma not particularly fond of Karal and its Communinst and Congress tribe of politicians, but facts must be our concern.
I think the Governemnt of India is caught between the devil and the deep blue sea. The best way to break the logjam would be to renotiate the Treaty of 1885 after a complete tecnical study of the strength of the dam. It is another example of the absurdity of Tamil politicians who claim that for 999 years the dam need not be repaired.
The fun has begun. Let us see how it ends.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Congress Party,Bhanwri Devi, Mahipal Maderna and the Political Crisis in Rajastahan

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

Rajas tan voted for the Congress Party in the last General Elections and has been rewarded with the kind of governance that even the Duke of York would have avoided. I am not endorsing the BJP regime in Jaipur under Vasundhara Raje Scindhia, but that Government avoided the sort of scandals which has made governance a non-issue in the state. I always wonder why the people of India who know that the Congress party is only a criminal organization, a facade for dynastic fascism, repeatedly vote for the Congress. The people of India voted out the NDA and are now reeling under the twin challenges of price rise, corruption and the consequent stagnant economic growth. But I digress.

A typical congressman is only a courtier bred like lap dogs to grovel at the feet of the dynasty. Mahipal Maderna, a jat congressman and a detractor of Ashok Ghelot apparently had his concubine a nurse called Bhanwri Devi killed by a gang of Bishnoi criminals who were close to this Congressman. This woman given the fact that she has consorted with Congressmen had acquired a taste for life in the fast lane and had made a secret recording of this corpulent congressman in a total state of nudity as he fumbled and groped his way over the assets of this nurse. Even the other congressman, N D Tewari would have found Mahipal Maderna's performance a trifle difficult to stomach. Congreessmen seem to have a genetic predisposition toward crime, sloth filth and violence. Who has forgotten the fact that Independent India's largest massacre of its own citizens was orchestrated by the Congress Party.

Bhanwri Devi and her cohorts started blackmailing the Congress minister with the CD. She should have known that Jats would have no qualms about killing her, afte rall she belonged to the Scheduled Caste. The nurse entrusted the job of having the CD auctioned to a local goon, Sahi Ram Bishnoi who hired two fellow Bishois to perhaps kill her and dispose off her body. Bishnois are generally a peaceful lot, but given the fact that Congressmen are around turn killers.

Ashok Ghelot was informed about the CD nearly year back and like a cheap blackmailer used the information to keep the Jat faction leader Maderna in check. By not taking any step, Ashok Ghelot has shown himself to be not only incompetent but worse willing to blackmail for power. What else can none expect from a man who has spent 50 years in a criminal gang called the Congress party. The social fabric of Rajastan has begun to fray. The Meos, the Gujjars and now even the Jats are all violently opposed to the Congress. If the Bhanwri Devi killing leads to the fall of this Congress regime it will be welcome.

The central government should dismiss the Rajastan Government and order a CBI inquiry.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

In the latest issue of Time is featured a debate, Which Economy will Rule the World? This debate sputters intermittently in the pages of News Magazines. While China receives a bad press because of the perceived threst to Western economic hegemony, India escapes scrutiny aas it hides behind the facade of dynastic fascism bolstered by periodic elections, as if India is an exemplar of a flourishing democratic state. Between India and China, I can say with all authority at my command that China, though a one Party state, the social indicators are all in favour of China. The country has been able to built world class educational institutions, provide clean water, housing and education along withnhealth care to its citizens. The standard of living oof an ordinary Chinese citizen is quite a few trimes better than it is in India. Even on the so-called human rights point of view China is quite a few notches higher. The Chinese policy of land acqusition makes it possible for those displaces to acquire stakes in the industry/ or enterprise that is established on their land. In India, as the example from Mayawati's UP and West Bengal show land is acquired by the state Governments in order to cater to the needs of private developers. India has a lot to leatrn from China.
Unfortunately since the time of Jawaharlal Nehru, the Congress regimes have encouraged rivalry with China. India and China have shared 2000 years of peaceful coexistence which was disrupted by the foolish and perverted policies of Nehru. India should not have interfered in the internal affairs of Tibet. The policy of provoking the Chinese over Tibet turned out to be counterproductive as it did not serve the national interests of India. Even now, India is allowing itself to be used by the Western powers against China and this policy is not in India's interest.
China has pursued the policy of economic growth by stimulating the domestic demand and by developing a niche market for its products abroad. I remember when my daughter was a small child she used to play with little antique models of cars and all of them were made abroad in China. Today the Haier, a Chinese Company has entered the consumer electtronic market and already in Infdia the washing machines made by this Company enjoys a very good reputation. And China makes quality products for less than third the price.
China has emerges as a pioneer in fast trains. It is now possible to travel from Bejing to Lasha is 24 hours and this is a technologicaL FEAT that China can be legitimately be proud of. India on the other hand is still stuck in the nineteenth century and fast trins in India trave at 9- to 100 km per hour, a far cry from the sppeds in China. India claims that it is aleading soft ware power. Even here internet usage in China is higher and China has emerges as a global player in the hard ware market. The world's fastest computer with 3 trillion tetra flops was made by China.
India is held back by a corrupt and criminal political class represented by the Congress party. Dynastic fascism has led to corruption on a scale that is now threatening to tear the country apart. A criminal political class aided and abetted by the bureaucracy is riding rough shod over the civil society. While judicial activism has brought some relief to the people, there is no rule of law. Politicians still commit crimes with impunity and in spite of some high profile politicians cooling their heels in Tihar jail, there is no rule of law in India. In China politicians are executed for corruption and I would like to see this law in India as well.
I personally feel that China has surpassed India in every sphere and there is no point is taliking about competition between the two. CHINA is superior in every aspect.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

The world has now seen the horrific images of the head of a Moslem state Libya, Muammar Qaddafi being killed in cold blood and his body, agasinst Islamic customs descerated and turned into a public spectacle for all the NATO armed "freedom fighters" to gwak over. Thr Americans and the French under Sarkozy have behaved in the most disgusting and dsigraceful manner and it only goes to show that the White countries of the world have scant respect for the dignity and lives of non-white people. It matters little that Barack Hussein Obama, an Afican-American with a Kenyan father behaved in the same manner as George W Bush. I am surprised that big counties like India and China did not raise their voice against theis unilateral intervention in Libya. UN Security Council has created a new concept in International Law by which in the name of humanitarian intervention the NATO can take any measure to dismember soverign states. The Westphalia order is now dead as a door nail.

The irony is not lost on students of history. One hundered years ago--October 24th 1911, the Italian colonial army captured and killed in the very town of Sirte, Mustapha ben Ahmed the patriot and anti-colonial fighter. Qadaffi was captured and shot on 24th October 2011 along wuith 53 of his men and NAT has to expalin the circumstances surrounding the brutal killing of Col Qaddaffi. Some kind of humanitarian intervention this. The post mortem shows that both Qaddafi and his son were shot at point blank range. As ususal American academics have the freedom to run with the hare and hunt with the hound and one acadeic by name Joanne Mariner has confirmed the revenge killing. I wonder why this womaN DOES NOT COME NOT AND CONDEMEN her government for this kind of barbarity. Academics in the USA can critisize all they want and this only reenforces the lpicture of a corporate state permitting its"intellectuals" the freedom to think if not to act. Fereedom of the American academic does not carry any responsibilityy and hence it is cheap and in the post -colonial theoretical armature, mere ideology. Like the German-Nazi regime, the NATO war machine has to be dismantled. Unfortunately Col Qaddafi invited destruction upon himself by agreeing to give up the ABC weapons program in return for a short honeymoon with the West. He was feted in Paris aND nEW yORK NOT THAT LONG AGO.

NATO carried out 40,000 bombing missions over Tripoli and Sirte and the death of civillians in these raids was countless. Even US embedded journalists who trumpet His/Her Master's Voice have drawn attention to the countless nameless dead in the cities capyured from pro-qadaffiloyalists. Benghazi the rebel stronghold was protected by the no-fly zone. The dispropotionate nature of the ariel bombardment itself shows the intent of NATO in launching the attacks. The French aircraft Rafale and the Erofighter have both demonstrated their worth at the expense of the non-white people of Libya.

Like in Iraq the real price will now be paid by the people of Libya. For all his faults, the socio-economic development in Libya was impressive in terms of health care and education. And the real prize is ofcource OIL and the west is assured another 50 years of Libyan oil.

Thursday, November 3, 2011


A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and bOOks.

I think that the legal advice Ms Kanimozhi is getting is not only of poor quality, but worse it is proving counter productive. Kanimozhi and her father represent a strand of Indian political culture that takes India back to the days of dynastic rule and the culture of the courtier, courtesan, and criminal. The DMK as a party and as a political movement has shown scant respect for rule of law. In it said that in Tamil Nadu when the DMK rules the police cannot take action against criminals because of the rampant criminalisation of the political culture. In fact on the 100th birthday of Annadurai more than 100 hardened criminals were released from jail and all of them were serving life sentences. In fact the killers of Menaka, the fearless woman councillor of Madurai who took on the "tanker lorry mafia" in Maduarai were released and the main accused had served less than 1 year fin jail after being convicted of murder. So let not the DMK preach about rule of law. They suddenly discover the virtues of law only when King Lerar's daughter is in jain for criminal misconduct. I think the real issue is the sort of values this aging partiarch has imparted to his children. The DMK is a lumpen party with dynastic fascism as its core ideology just like the Congress.

I have met Kanimozhi on one ocassion and found her pleasant and engaging and was extremely courteous to me. So I would not have personally been offended if she had been granted bail. But we are addressing a larger question. Do politicians deserve sympathy. The answer to this question is no. They have systematically plundered the country. The 2G Spectrum sacandal is only one of several. The 1984 carnage organised by the Congress party after the death of Indiara Gandhi has not resulted in a single conviction. The case against that Yadava criminal from Bihar--Laloo Prasad-- will come up only after the last witness has been killed. The illiterate fellow is still disgracing the Parliament. So India has a nation has no symapahy for politicians. Political crime is a low investment and high return industry. See the case of Papu Yadava, D P Yadava, Neera Yadava and sundry others. Not one has been convicted.

Kanimozhi should have asked bail on the ground that her role in the 2G spectrum was limited to the 200 crores invested in Kalaignar TV and should have been successful in getting bail. However she said that being a woman, a wife and having an aged parent she should be given bail. Just imagine the chaos that would result if bail is granted on these spurious grounds. Every congress man will make his wife the benami for his crimes and the poor woman will be in jail and then bail. Thank god that O P Saini has seen through this argument. Moreover, the DMK is capable of having witness eliminated. If fact one of the directors of the Grrehouse Promoters was killed and the Chennai police made it look like suicide. What about the killing of Paul who was the E O of Tiruchendur Temple whose gold was looted by a DMK bigwig several decades back. DMK like the Congress party has crime in its DNA and deserves no sympathy. Let the patriarch suffer like King Lear.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and bo

I think it was al-Beruni who remarked that the Indians have no sense of history and the historians of India particularly the Delhi University and JNU species are bending backwards to prove him right. The removal of one short essay by A K Ramnujam from the history syllabus has become a cause celebre for the faithful to rally around the flag; never mind that the flag is moth eaten and shows all signs of having been dragged through a lot of dirt and muck. The inane shenanigans of our historians would be entertaining, if only it were not so tragic in the consequences. Soon after Indira Gandhi came to power in 1967 the coterie of like minded historians got into the business of creating "progressive "history. They grandly marched under the banner of a small pa written by 3 historians who remain till this day the icons of "progressive" historiography. The little pamphlet called Communalism and the Writing of Indian History became the manifesto of a whole new generation of historians who invaded and colonized the portals of Indian Universities. The UGC under the chairmanship of Satish Chandra and the Ministry of Education under Dr Nurul Hassan were all suborned to the cause of what this self appointed group pf historians called secular history.

The first target of this cabal was a multi volume history of India called the Bharatiya VIdhya Bhavan Series. They launched a frontal attack on this series calling the approach "communal". Like Stalin's henchman, Beria, this cabal discovered thought crimes and a mere fatwa from this cabal was enough to send tall historians like R C Majumdhar and H C Raychaudhuri scurrying for cover. Guilt by association made independent thinking impossible in the field of history. Now the so-called progressive historians term the removal of one small paper by A K Ramnujum as an instance of intolerance. I should now ask why did they have the entire series of books virtually banned from the curriculum of Departments of History all over the country. I grant that the BVB series does not qualify to rank as great works of history. However, it represented an honest attempt to make sense of India;s tangled past and it passed the one test this group demands from historiography. It did not blame Babur for the Ayodhya issue.It is ironical that a multi volume work termed as "communal" by this cabal of "progressive" historians does not blame Babur for the destruction of the Ayodhya temple. Like any political issue which moves with the ebb and tide of politics the issue of communalism is also a political football and the progressive historians can frame any issue as "communal" depending on the politics of the hour.

The example that I have given shows very clearly that the progressive historians are guilty of practicing academic goondaism of the worst kind when they had the BVB series banned from the field of historical discourse. Even on social issues the cabal of "progressive" historians are extremely primitive in their social attitudes. Is there a single Dalit Professor in the Department of History in JNU. Are dalits banned from the corridors of JNU. Even in Hyderabad Central University and in Delhi University this cabal of progressive historians have betrayed the Indian constitution by not encouraging the oppressed and suppressed people. Chandra Bahn has stated this in a number of different places. So let this group of state sponsored historians who are intolerant, narrow minded and offensive not talk about academic freedom. They do not deserve the freedom to ban writings they disagree with and defend only the opinions that they are comfortable with. History as a discipline demands an atmosphere where divergent views can be debated. This cabal has snuffed out debate in India by practicing selective outrage.

The essay in question can by no stretch of the imagination be regarded as a major contribution to the understanding of Ramayana. It does have shock value and little else. The one reason why the so called progressives are coming out of the woodwork in order to condemn the University is to create a wild controversy and with a crumbling UPA government in power they can cause a diversion. No great academic or historiographical principle is involved. The historians have themselves betrayed their profession and like prostitutes in a whorehouse cannot say that they valur chastity.

Monday, October 17, 2011

The verdict on the Shivani Bhatnagar murder case: Appaling failure of Proscecution

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

The journalist Shivani Bhatnagar was killed in New Delhi in a secure high rise appartment in January 1999. An IPS officer who was on secondment to I K Gujrals' office was the prime suspect. R K Sharma, a Tyagi by caste ans an IPS officer seems to have engaged 3 Tyagi killers from Meerut and Western UP in order to have Shivani Bhatnagar killed. The Lower courts found all 4 of then accused guilty and sentenced them to life imprisonment. The appelate court has acquitted 3 out of the 4 except the actual killer another Sharma called Pradeep Sharma. The hon'ble judges have stated that the quality of the evidence presented was poor and that though they had suspicions, they gave the 3 accused the benefit of doubt. I think such lapses are becoming very common and the common man who has already lost Faith in the political and administrative leadership is rapidly losiong faith in the judiciary as well. If this trend is not checked it will only lead to private justice and we are already seeing signs of private justice. I think failure on the part of the police to get known killers convicted by deliberate misconduct will lead to private justice and that would be quite bad.

The two prosecutors who got the convictions at the lower court were removed from handlinmg this case, The Delhu Police have to answer the question why they were removed. I think there were powerful political interests at work. Second, the motive behind the killing was widely publicised at the time and now it is said that the motive has not been established. If that is so how did the appelate bench find Pradeep Sharma guilty and confirmed the life sentence. Why dis the appealte court disregard the cell phone records of R K Sharma who was in constant touch with the gang of killers. Why is that evidence not germane to the case.

The inordinate delay in pronouncing the judgement without assigning any reasons is yet another factor that points to judicial misconduct. Unfortunately the nation has to suffer the corrupt politicians, criminal police officers, colluding bureaucrats, mediocre journalists, conniving RTI activists, compromised judges, and the list can go on. The solution to all this does not lie in a LOk Pal Bill or a Joke Pal Bill. It lies in the ability of decent citizens to punish the guilty and establish a Republic of Virtue in India.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Can P Chidambaram survive the 2G Crisis: The March 25th 2011 Note and its implications

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

The only lasting contribution of the Congress party school of Dynastic Fascism to Indian statecraft is the self destructive passion for factionalism and this talent was on full display in the recent eruption of conflict between P Chidambaram and Pranab Mukherjee. The victory, if it can be called so, was to Pranab Babu, the wily Bengali Bhadralok who made the dhoti clad Chettiyar from Tamil Nadu witness his humiliation before the whole nation on public T V. And that self confessed brain challenged Home Minister even says that he is "satisfied" and the "matter is closed". I say brain challenged because the morning's newspapers say the P Chidambaram suffers from "amnesia" a la Kalmadi.

The whole Nation is aware that Raja alone could not have carried out the 2G Spectrum Scam without the complicity of other powerful political personalities. The Cabinet decision was to refer Spectrum pricing to an Empowered Group of Ministers (GOM).The Finance Minister concurred with the Prime Minister's decision to withdraw the Spectrum pricing from the purview of the Group of Ministers. Now Shri Raja can claim on the basis of the March 25th Note the policy of issuing licences on the first come first served basis was taken with the full knowledge and concurrence of the entire Government of India. In his press conference, Shri Pranab Mukherjee has reiterated this fact before thae whole Nation with P Chidambaram standing behind him like a nervous school boy. With one fell stroke, P Chidambaram was exposed as an abettor in the 2G Spectrum Scam before the whole Nation and piece de resistance was the thanks from Chidambaram for this brilliant drama.

If we look at the political carreer of P Chidambaram we find that he was with the G K Moopen faction of the Tamil Nadu Congress and has been trined to put factional loyalties above Party, Dynasty, and Ideology. He was instrumental in having the office room of the then Finance mInister bugged and the reason behin the bugging, perhaps had something to do with the 2G Scandal. Anyway Shri Pranab Mukherjee never forgave this slight and like a true Bengali Babu waited for the opprotune time and struck a blow from which Chidambaram will not recover. The March 25th 2011 Note is a time bomb with a very slow burning fuse time only to explode in the face of Chidambaram. The questions that directly stem from the note are:

1 Why did the then Finance Minister concur with the First come First served basis fro pricing of scarce spectrum.

2 Why did the then Finance minister not insist that the NDA policy be reviewed and stall the pricing on the basis of the 2001 prices.

3 Why did the Finance Ministry agree to let the DOT do the processing of the licences bypassing TRAI.

4 Is there any difference in the positions taken by Raja who is now in Tihar jail ( a dalit and I have already pointed out this in an earlier blog) and the high cast P Chidambaram who is still the Home Minister of India, though his Sivagangai MP seat is likely to be struck down by the courts.

It is claer that Pranab Da has ensured the exit og P Chidambaram from the cabinet and his exit is only a matter of when and how.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Subash Chandra Bose: His Majesty's Opponent by Sugata Bose

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

Subash Chandra Bose is a tragic figure in Indian history and an enigmatic personality in Indian historiography. Jawaharlal Nehru, his rival and a self-appointed heir of Gandhi declared with joyful glee that Bose had died in a plane crash near Taiwan and thereby ignited a controversy which is still reverberating. Nehru relief at the untimely demise of Subash Chandra Bose was transparently clear and I dare say that Nehru was the real beneficiary of the death of Subash Chandra Bose. The plane crash removed from the scene a very powerful and charismatic figure from the landscape of Indian politics. And the quick elimination of Gandhiji meant that in the post Independence era, Nehru was virtually without a rival. Even Sardar Patel was constantly humiliated by Nehru in the years following Independence, that he died a broken man, his dreams shattered by the barrage of humiliation inflicted by the first Prime Minister. Incidentally, on the day Gandhi met his untimely death he was scheduled to meet Nehru and talk to him about the impending resignation of Sardar Patel from the cabinet.

The political life of Subash Candra Bose is fascinating and the eminent historian Dr Sugata Bose has done a splendid job in contextualizing the career of Bose within the framework of the national movement. Jawarharlal Nehru being a rumbustious factional leader had created a pro-left faction within the Congress party. While public ally deferring to Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru astutely created a ginger group consisting of left wing ideologues like Kriplani and Jayaprakas Narayan and this left oriented faction was being pitted against the nationalist such as Bose. One outcome of this strategy was the marinalization of Subash Chanra Bose within the Congress Party and even when Bose won the election to the Presidency of the AICC, the Nehruvian faction prevailed upon Gandhi to disown Bose. The rest as they say is history.

Bose's decision to leave India and seek the assistance of Japan and Germany still remains a controversial issue in Indian historiography. The pro-Nehru bran of state sponsored historians like Bipan Chandra and the like hint that Subash Chandra Bose was a proto fascist and expalin the alliance with Germany in terms of an inherent anti-democratic streak in the personality of Bose. What they deliberately ignore, and this point is well argued in Sugata Bose's recent book, is that factional in-fighting within the Congress aided and promoted by Jawarhar Lal Nehru had made the exit of Bose from the Congress inevitable.

Sugata Bose has quite rightly pointed out that Bose did not envisage a long term alliance with Germany as he was fully aware of the implications of German Nazi ideology. In fact Germany hardly gave any help to Bose except arranging his transport via submarine to Japan. However, SubashhCharda Bose's alliance with Imperial Japan did result in untold suffering when war crimes were comitted by the Japanese forces on the Islands. Subash Chandra Bose being the head of the Interim Government cannot be absolved from the blame for the massacres in Port Blair. Sugata Bose unfortunately does not deal with this painful chapter.

The book under review is very good and scholarly and deserves to be read by all serious student sof modern Indian history.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Injustice to Anjali Gupta: The Ministry has to answer

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

The suicide of the Indian Air Force Officer Anjali Gupta is both shocking and frightening. It is shocking because the so-called electronic media that rallied around Jessica Lal and Ruchika Girhotra completely ignored the plight of Anjali Gupta. It is frightening because a woman who complained about sexual harassment against her superior officers was found guilty of "indiscipline" and her services were terminated and the young woman was discharged "dishonorably" thereby adding insult to injury. The officers against whom Anjali Gupta has complained must be made abettors to the suicide in the same manner that S P S Rathore was proceeded against. If India is to retain its pretension to being a civilized society.

Anjali Gupta had leveled serious charges of sexual harassment against her superior officer who happened to be a male. Her complaint was ignored and her male officers ganged up against her and fabricated a case of "indiscipline" against her and the prime witness against the woman was the very officer against whom she had leveled serious charges. The Supreme Court guidelines for dealing with cases of sexual harassment were completely ignored and this young woman was paraded before a hostile male inquiry committee.

I think the Media which covered the case in the very beginning soon gave up and moved on to other stories. Had the case been fraught under the searchlight of the media then this injustice could have been avoided. Anjali Gupta was driven to suicide by a corrupt male officer corp and an indifferent media.

Friday, September 9, 2011


A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

NATO forces aided by France and USA have succeded in defeating the Libyan armed forces militarily and driving the legitimate government into exile. This repets the pattern of diplomacy that we have been seeing right from the time the Soviet Union collapsed and USA became the single pole around which the international order revolved. This development marks a reversal of the two principles that had been the basis of Western statecraft from 1648 when the Treaty of Westphalia was signed. The two principles were: respect for the legitimacy of states and their territorial integrity and second non interference in ther internal affirs. These principles were thje lessons drawn from the wars between the Dutuch, the French and other European powers (Jermey Black in his History of Diplomacy) has a very good account of this.

In Kosovo, Srebia, Iraq, Afghanistan and now in Libya the West has invoked two multi national bodies to provide legitimacy for its unilateral interverntion. First, the International Court of Criminal Justice and second the United Nations Security Council. Some support was also garnerred from the Arab League and African Union. It is interesting to note that the Arab League encouraged the NATO to go ahead with the no-fly zone thereby undermining the capability of the Libyans to protect the territorial integrity of their state. The use of the International Court of Criminal Justice in a one sided m,anner is yet another innovstion. In any civil war especially one in which foreigh support is palpable there will be retaliation. The rebels too comitted atrocities in Benghazi for which no retibution is forthcoming. This one sided invocation of International Court of Criminal Justice, a victors court to whcih the defeated are brought in chains, will lead to the establishment of alternate and competing tribunals ion which Bush, Blair and now vern Obama and Sarkozy may be arraigned as "war criminals".

The NATO forces gave blanket support to the rebels and in the run up to the take over of Tripoli NATO launched a relentless air bombardment of Tripoli which did not have an ari defence systtem causing lage scale deaths and the so called frwee embedded media and jounalaists ignored the deaths of civilians in Tripoli while exaggerating the toll in Benghhazi. Surprisingly, the USA has made a hero of Belhadj, a notorious al qaeda operative who was sent to Libya via the "extraordinary rendition" rpoute made famous by President Bush and Libya kept him in prison. Now Belhadj has joined hands with NATO and he is on the same page os the Americans as far as Libya is concerned. The US policy has only led to Libya coming under the influence of the al-Qaeda network and along with Somalia will be the hub of terrorist activity.

One definite consequence of the ill advised invasion is the promotion of "identity politics" and USA will have to bear the brunt of this short sighted policy. Like in Iraq where USA promoted the Shiaas at the expense of the Sunnis,here in Libya the USA is encouraging the Berbers against the Turegs. Largew number of Turgs have been killed and the Western media is complicit in not reporting human rights violation of the Berbers. And as is the case in Iraq the final issue is OIL. Libya has Afric's largest known deposit of Oil and with Saudi Arabia being drained of its reserves by 2025,the Western oil comapnies can exploit Libya along with Iraq for another 30 to 40 years. This is the truth.

Monday, September 5, 2011


A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

Pondicherry University, one of the most dynamic of Central Universities in the country celebrated the Teacher's Day in a grand manner. The Vice Chancellor, Professor J A K Tareen has given back to the Faculty of the University the dignity that was denied to it be by individuals who cannot be named. His vision of making the university a leading center for highe learning is being realised and he repeatedly speaks of the low ranking Indian institutions of higher learning get in International surveys such as the London Times list and the Shanghai list. His remedy is to increase the student base of the UNiversity, thereby maving from what can be called fishing in a "small pond" for "crabs and fishes" to an ocean where "whales and sharks" are the quarry--the potential Nobel Prize winners. There is an implecable logic in this analogy and I hope that this grand vision unfloded in this University is realised.

The Chief Guest was Professor M Anandakrishnan, Chairman of the Board of Governors, IIT, Kanpur. His pep talk suited the occasion and he boldly said that the reason for the declining standard of education was he rampant political interference. He pointedly said that if Sir S Radhkrishnan were to revisit the Universities with which he was associated with like BHU, Andhra UNiversity and Madras University he would be shocked at the falling standards. Identity politics coupled with political interference were the two single most important factors for the lack of credible universities in India. Pondicherry University remains an exception primarily because the Vice Chancellor remains committed to making the University a world class institution.

The Best Teacher Awards were presented to the outstanding Faculty members. The teachers were evaluated on the basis of 20 paramenters and the those who scored more than 4.5 on the 5.0 scale were selected for the awards. It was an honour to receive this prestigeous award.

The phenomenal growth of the University has led to the University being ranked at # 16 in a recent survey done by the weekly magazine India Today. Anyone who has been associated with the institution as an oldtimer (those who joined at the very inception of the Univeristy and not those who wafted in with the gentle breeze) will say with conviction that what they see on the Campus is a total transformation of the academic culture and administrative practices.

I wish the Univerity, its Vice Chancellor, Professor J A K Tareen and the students the very best.

Monday, August 29, 2011


A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

Thucydides, the great Athenian historian, has a famous chapter in his book The History of the Peloponesian War in which the fate of the male inhabitants of the island of Melos is discussed in the Athenian Assembly. Known as the Melian Dialogue, this chapter must be read by all those who have rushed into the debate on the fate of Rajiv Gandhi's killers. I do not have any sympathy for Rajiv Gandhi or for that matter the criminal organisation called the Congress Party. I must add that I am one of those who argues vigorously that the Congress should be expelled from the political arena because it organised the largest massacre in the history of independent India and Rajiv Gandhi actively abetted this crime. The fact is that Rajiv Gandhi's killers are now perceived to be icons of Tamil Nationalism makes it difficult for a soft state like India, and a government rendered even more soft by incompetence, dynastic fascism and corruption,to carry out the sentence. I do not think that the killers will be executed on September 9th 2011.

Thucydides with whom I began this blog says that political considerations outweigh moral and even legal considerations while debating the issue of clemency. Will any purpose be served now if the 3 men convicted of killing Rajiv Gandhi are put down. It will only reignite the fire of Tamil ethic nationalism and India cannot afford another Identity founded political movement. Further, the role of Rajiv Gandhi's mother in creating the very organisation that ultimately killed her son will once again come to the fore. Further, the incompetent and politically and militarily disastrous intervention by the Indian Army in Sri Lanka following the Indo_Sri Lnakan Agreement will once again be the focus of attention. And the criminal organisation called the Congress has conveniently chosen to forget the Jain Commission findings because Sonia and her courtiers are now in bed with the DMK in that menagerie called the United Progressive Alliance. All these facts are highly damaging to the Congress and hence the killers will have their sentences commuted.

Whether the 3 killers deserve mercy or not is a moot point. Politically it will be impossible for them to be hanged. Already the Tamil Nationalists are out in straight demanding the commutation of the death sentence. The Gandhi family itself has set the precedent by requesting and getting the sentence on Nalini commuted to life imprisonment. The 3 killers will have their sentences commuted and as they have spent more than 16 years in jail, they will be eventually released. Tamil Nadu has the dubious distinction of releasing life convicts whose sentence in commuted for absurd reasons like the 100th birthday of Mr Annadurai. So far 6 people including a young girl have burnt themselves to death in support of the killers. With this kind of madness around the soft state like India cannot carry out its own judicial verdict.

One last point. Did not Rajiv Gandhi deserve his fate as he was responsible for the largest massacre in the history of Independent India and his 3 killers were only instruments of retribution.

Monday, August 22, 2011


A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

Like a sleeping mahavishnu, Anna Hazara appears daily before the nation's reading public. His statrments, earthy and pointedly simplistic, has thw xountry entrhralled. The media hype surrounding this 74 year old wonderkid from the boondocks of Maharashtra, is such that even to question his rhetorical and theatrical stuts is to invite the wrath of the hyper active middle class and its acolytes in the electronic media. The whole nation is watching with bated breath his antics and such is the power of the media that a large number of people beleive that corruptionwill just vanish the moment the Lok Pal Bill as drafted bb Anna and his Team is passed. Nothing is further from the truth.

Anna's middle calss movement with its noisy assemblage of journalists, social wannbes, fashion designers, corporate lobbyists are now masquerading as the conscience of the nation. Yhis very class is responsible along with the crimianl politicians for the total collape of the moral fabric of Indian society and yet this class pretends to be an agent of change. Corruption could not have grown to this monstrous propotion without the active connivance of the very class that has now comwe out in open support of Anna Hazare. In fsct, Anna Hazare is not challening dynastic fascism he is only reinforcing it when he declared this afternoon that he will negotiate only with Rahul Gandhi or with the Prime Minister. Is this not an open endorcement of dynasty and we all know that the Gandhi Dynasty is the bebeficiary of the corruption. While he has no faith in parliament, this saith from Maharashtra reposes full confidence in the dynasty.

Corruption will not end in India even if Anna Hazare and his 5 magicians are appointed Lok Pals will sky high powers of investigation and procecution. This is because the electoral system has become the fountainhead of all that is wrong in the Indian variant of democracy. One change that Anna Hazare could have asked for but did not is to insist on the audit of the accounts of the politicaL PARTIES. Since politics runs on black money, the system that generates black money is left virtually untouched by Saint Anna Hazare and his 5 apostles. This condition of subjecting the political parties to the audit peocess wil go a long way in cleaning up the political system. Instead the 4 wise men and 1 wise woman want s Lok Pal who will get into the peicture after the deed is done. There is nothing to prevent the Lok Pal and his fellow members of becoming one more layer in a corrupt pie.

I approve of Anna Hazare total disdain for politicians because India is singularly unfortunate in having full time criminals as part time members of Parliament. Team Anna's draft does not address the issue of wanton criminalisation of the political process. If the bill is passed, as I think it will, then will corruption vanish from India. The naswer is a resounding NO.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Is Indian Independence worth the blood, tears, toil and sweat?

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

The celebration of Independence Day has become a hollow ritual. The tricolour which once inspire a whole generation has become the symbol of a corrupt, facist dynasty which runs the Congress party. The speech from the ramparts of the Red Fort has the contrived quality of a ritual whose day has passed. Does the idea of India inspire any hope?

The rampant corruption of which the 2G Spectrum Scam and the CWG scam are but the most egresious examples will have their impact on the electorate in thr next general elections. The Indian people are not concerned with political corruption if it is within managable limits. What has now happened it that the people have realised that the sole purpose of politics is to gain power and pelf and use both to cultivate a "vote bank" as the Congress party has done over the past 40 years. Is this the Freedom for which so many countless martyrs laid down their lives. Had they known that within a few decades of Independence India will fall prey to dynastic fascism, I am sure many would have wondered if freedom is woth the candle.

The Indian politician, like the post-colonial intellectual was the first to realise the absolute goldmine in the form if "identity politics". Starting first with language which led to the division of India along linguistic lines, then caste identities were politisised by V P Singh and his cohorts which in turn led to caste blocks becoming the vote banks of politicians like Mulayam Singh Yadava and Laloo Prasad Yadava. The absolute criminalisation of the political system can be seen in those parts of India where political parties representing caste blocks rule the roost. I, of course have Karunanidh's restwhile regime in Tamil Nadu and Mayavathi's regime in Uttar Pradesh in mind. Is this the freedom the martyrs faught and died for?

Apart from the criminalisation of Indian politics due to the strangle hold of identity politics there are other disconcerting aspects. The electoral process has lost its neutral character. P Chidambaram's declaration as the victor in the Sivagangai Parliamentary elections in 2009 is itself proof of how the rich and the powerful are able to subvert the system. And this man is now the "Home Minister" of India a position once occupied by Sardar patle, Lal Bahadur Sastri and Hon'ble L K Advani. Is this the freedom the martyrs of India died for?

The Indian state is crumbling from the weight of its own monstrous crimes. The entire tribal belt is under the sway of the naxalites and given the disgust the people of India feel toward the political system, it is only a short step toward an alliance between the disgruntled elements and the violent naxalites. Civil society activists like Anna Hazare will be co opted into this corrupt political system, leaving the field wide open for Baba Ramdev.

We have to see whether the India that we know will survive another 25 years. The 4 southern state together with Gujarat and Maharashtra already account for nearly 45% of India's GDP. Regional disparities will lead to the undermining of the political fabric. Unfortunately the whole political system is obsessed with its dynastic fixation aand has no time to think of the problems of India. Is this the India for which the martyrs died?

China has shown that a country can progress in spite of centuries of social and economic stagnation. The Universities in China like Beijing University have risen to the very top of the list of global universities and India is struggling at the rock bottom. Is this the Freedom the martyrs died for? I think when historians look back on the post Independence period of India's past they will not hesitate to conclude that a glorious dream was betrayed by dynastic fascism and corruption.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Norwegian Massacre: Is it Christian Terrorism

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

Norway has always regarded it self as the conscience of the civilized world. The self appointed custodian of "western values" was always quick to defend every terrorist group in the world the latest being the LTTE, the terrorist group which was responsible for killing more than 50,000 civilians. Norway was one of the prominent EU countries which followed a split policy on terrorism: condemn the state if it tries to defend the territorial integrity of the country, but always defend sundry terrorist and anarchist groups in the name of human rights. Norway had no qualms about signing up for the War on Terror crafted by the US under the leadership of Bush and Blair. Always following an aggressive policy of promoting Western geo -strategic interests, Norway maintained the "high moral" ground by adopting a hectoring tone when it came to countries like Sri Lanka which faced one of the worst terrorist groups in the world with cynide capsules and human bombs.

The Western media always labels political acts of violence anywhere in the world with a religious tag. Thus we have the well known category of Islamic terrorism. Given this fact can we call the massacre of 94 young people on the island of Uteoya by Anders Behring Breivik as an act of Christian terrorism just as the world seems to recognize the existence of Islamic terrorism. There is an eerie similarity in the planning and execution of the plot with Timothy McVeigh's Oklahoma Federal Building bombing nearly a decade back. McVeigh too was inspired by fundamentalist Christian values and he too used ammonium nitrate as the explosive charge for the bomb.

The suggestion that there is a Christian terrorism is just as wrong as the assertion that there is Islamic terrorism. The Moslem countries have certain grievances which must be addressed and they are all of a political nature, By giving a religious complexion to protest and its attendent violence the Western world is basically evading its own responsibility is generating the grievances that lead to violence. Norway with its ruling labour Party has followed a policy of giving shelter to groups that will be labeled terrorist by any definition.

The man who killed 94 young people and blew up the Prime Minister's office in downtown Oslo was a home grown terrorist and I am sure that Norway will be more circumspect while condemning other state for protecting the territorial integrity of the state.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Gulam Nabi Fai, Indian Intellectuals and Narional Security

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

The involvement of Indian "intellectuals" in the seminar circuit operated by Dr Gulam Nabi Fai who was also the Director of the American-Kashmir Council does not come as a surprise to me at all. When I see the tele intellectuals from JNU sitting in the NDTV sudio with their poster girl Barkha Dutt making the most outlandish statements I only feel that India can never be a world class power with a brain trust that can be hired for an economy class ticket to USA. What is even more disgusting is that this breed of parasites has colonised the UGC, the media, the National Advisory Council, NGOs and the like and a younger generation is being trained to follow in the illustrious footsteps of such "intellectuals". These intellectuals do not read but trade in opinion and pass of political positions in the garb of academic research. The post-colonial theoretical armature that these intellectuals invoke elided the boundaries between truth and fiction, between opinion and judgement, between theoretical position and practice. What is most disconcerting is that these intellectuals profess unalloyed liberal views in public and rant with full vigor at "reactionary hindu extremism", froth at the mouth at the mention of Hon'ble Narendar Modi, the Chief Minister of Gujarat, and let their hearts bleed for criminals of every kind who happen to belong to the "right " caste are silent when it comes to real issues. For instance these tele intellectuals have written volumes on the 1992 event in Ayodhya, but hardly have a word on the criminal pogrom of the Congress Party in 1984. They are the first to hold candle light vigil for "terrorists" killed in police actions but do not have a word of succour for the victims of terrorism, On the one hand they seek the freedom to criticise the Nation state from every platform available but are the first to hold their grubby palms for trinkets and grants from the state. It is this kind of intellectual who has sold the country to Pakistan and the "liberal" anti-national rants are also given the legitimacy of post-colonial social science. The coming of the Sage Corporation into India has led to the erosion of the independent social science thinking India had for quite a long time.

While I am not a great admirer of the nation state, I can say with a great deal of pride that what I have written and published is based on my wide reading and honest understanding. In short, I represent the dying breed of independent historians and thinkers among the slumdog post colonial teleintellectuals. The UGC also rewards intellectuals for being anti national. If one stretches out ones hand for alms from the likes of Gulam Nabi Fai, the prestige value of such beggars in the Indian Universities goes up. He/she is circulating in the rarefied air of high policy ans so he/she must be rewarded and promoted. It is a shame that the Government of India has appointed on the Kashmir interlocutoer council Dilip Padgoankar who was a guest of Gulam Nabi Fai.

JNU is full of robust teleintelelctuals who have battened themselves on the pickings from Fai.The culture of mediocrity and showmanship which is encouraged in Indian Universities is responsible for the sorry state of affairs. These teleintellectuals do not have the time or the energy to teach as they are found lobbying with their political friends for research money and trips. The net result is a total lack of a national perspective in our educational and res each institutions. Moreover, the Indian academics have learnt to be mimic men and have prospered.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Mumbai Terror Strikes of July 13th 2011: Why India cannot deal with Jehadi Terrorism

A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

The recent terror strikes in Mumbai have demonstrated once again that the common Indian citizen will always be at the receiving end of terror strikes while the politicians escape. We have not forgotten the Dawood Ibrahim inspired 1993 blasts or the train balsts, or the India Gate attacks and 26/11/2008 will forever remain a day that will lie in infamy. The Congress response has been to draft the Anti Communal Bill which will make terror attacks even easier and will provide immunity to the perpetrators of terrorist strikes. The ruling party, particularly the Indian National Congress does not seem to realise that terrorism is not an identity issue. The fact that not a single sentence has been carried out to punish those guilty of terrorist attacks only serves to embolden the jehadi groups bent on creating mayhem in India.

There is absolutely no ground level intelligence gathering network that can provide information about plots, targets and finance. The civil liberty groups have ensured that there is blanket of security for all terrorist groups to operate with utter one is saying that suspects should be immediately be arrested and thrown into jail, but there is need to have deep roots in the muslim communities, particularly of northern India and Kerala in order to identify potential recruits for terror attacks in India. A proactive policy of stopping terrorism is far better than merely indulging in platitudes after the even. The misplaced commissions such as the Sachar Commissions give legitimacy to a moslem sense of alienation. There is poverty and deprivation in all sections of Indian society and by making that an identity issue, the Congress Pary and its acolytes only encourage a feeling of alienation among the Muslim sections of the Indian population. It is the same misguided policy that led to the Partition and the Indian National Congress in its present dyanstic fascist avatar has not learnt lessons from the past.

Apart from community based intelligence gathering, the country needs to have a doctrine to deal with terrorism. When the BJP handled the Kandhahar crisis one way the Congress politisied the issue and when the BJp advocates strong action, then the same foul moujted congresmen say that there is a communal agenda at work. Unfrtunately the "communal" bogey is raised whenever step need to be taken to protect the aam admi from jehadi terrorism. The politicians are not targetted and hence they do not worry about the plight of the common citizens who die in these brazen attacks. And the jehadis do not attack the politicians because they know that if they do they will be destroyed. In other words the Congres regime does not care about the loss of life in jehadi strikes.

Just think of the case of Kasab, He has been sentenced to death but the sentence is yet to be carried out and because the Congress regime wants to let Afzal Guru escape, Kasab will in all probabiity be repartriated back to Pakistan in a few months/years time. We have an absurd situation here in India where terrorists get full protection and the citizen gets none. There is a lot to be learnt from Israel and the success Israel has had in dealing with Palestenian terrorism. The justice of a political cause cannot be used to justify terrorism and Israel has shown how to deal with militants. Indian Government must seek the cooperation of MOssad and Mossad must be involved in training Indian Intelligence wing. I must also add that RAW and IB are both full of traitors and they must be disbanded.

Even as the death toll mounts, Prithiraj Chavan says that the NCP has the Home portfolio and hence the bomb attacks. Nothing can be more cynical and criminal than this statement. Instead of taking the responsibility for failing to protect the people of Mumbai, Chavan is making political capitsl. Congresman like vultures will feed on the dead bodies of our fallen citezens and they must be eliminated. As long as India continues to vote the corrupt criminals who are now in power the country will bwe asoft target.

Saturday, July 2, 2011


A look at the world of politics, statecraft, diplomacy and books

Travancore,a princely state that tried to become a member of the United Nations after the declaration of Independence in 1947,has always been an example of good governance thanks to the efforts of Sir T Madhava Rao, the Prime MInister in th second half of the nineteenth century. The kings of Travancore devised a novel legitimizing strategy for their rule. They ruled in the name of the Deity, Padmanabha, one of the forms of Vishnu. The kIngs claimed to be the deputy of the deity. Such a political theory was obviously inspired by the political practices of the the Vijayanagara Empire. The wars with the Dutch, the Portuguese and the expanding sultanate of Mysore especially under Tippu Sultan made the kingdom of Travancore an early entrant into the subsidiary alliance and the Rajas of Travancore were firm supporters of the Company like the Mahratta chieftains, Scindia, Holkar and the Gaikwad.

The good administration together with the prosperity engendered by the trade and commerce made the kingdom extremely rich. The discovery of the treasure trove in the Padmanabha Temple reflects this.

Two days back i.e. 30th June 2011, the ante chambers near the sanctum sanctorum of the temple was opened and a veritable treasure trove was discovered. Nearly 1000 golden chains,bag full of diamonds,golden plates, fabulous jewelery,and a numismatists' delight in the form of hundrens of coins dating to the medieval period down to the rulers of Travancore. The inventory of this treasure trove is being done under the direct supervision of the Supreme Court. The Archaeological Survery of India has lost its credibility due to its partisan role and politisised nature of its functioning. In fact the suspicion that many entertain that the ASI and its top brass are involved in smuggling of antiquities makes us extremely apprehensive of any cultural property which is in the hands of the ASI.

The temple was the personal property of the ruling family and therfore the situation in Travancore or Trivandrum is much different from that of TamilNadu where tEmples became state property as soon as the Company established itself. The various instruments of accession signed at the time of Independence are specific to Government property and excluded religious holdings. This being the case the ruling family can make a good case for the restoration of the jewellry to the descendents of the last raja of Travancore. The precedent in this case is similar to that of the Nizam of Hyderabad who was permitted to keep his personal wealth.

The discovery of the treasure trove provides a major opportunity for historians to study a hug cache of historical antiquities. Numismatists must take the opportunity to analyse the coins using the methods that Peter Spufford has outlined in his Money and its Uses in Early Medieval Europe (Cambridge 2009).

Sunday, June 26, 2011

P Chidambaram and Amnesia: Why the 1984 Riots organised by the Congress Party cannot be forgiven or Forgotten

Yesterday the Home Minister of India said someting no Home MInister of India have ever said: He asked the Sikhs to "forget the 1984 Riots and move on". This plea for amnesia is strange as the job of the Home Minsiter is to ensure the esucity of the State and its citizens. The main reason P Chidambaram made these thoughtless and callous remarks is bacause of the infighting within the Congress and the Home Minister wants to position himself on the side of the dynasty. Even the loose cannon of the Congress party its General Secretary, Shri Digvijaya Singh has not made any remark which rubs salt in the wounds of the Sikh community. P Chidambaram should apologise for his intemperate remarks and all should take a vow never to forgive or forget the black deeds of 1984.

In any civilised society, the Party like the Congress which was responsible for burning to death nearly 15,000 men in New Delhi alone would have been banned from the political field and its leaders proscecuted for organising and participating in the mayhen starting on October 31st 1984. Instead all that the party did was to make man like Jagdish Tytler, H K L Bhagat and Sajjan Kumar minister who even represnted India in the high councils of the world. Even after 27 years not a single person has been convicted for the crimes. Now the Home Minister asks the community to move on. Mr P Chidambaram is forgetting that the people of India have neither forgiven or forgotten 1984 and the Congress will pay a heavy price.

Why this indecent haste to bury the past? The present UPA Government is neck deep in scams, scandals and scum of every kind. After some time these scandals can also be forgotten and the nation asked to move on. The Congress has perfected this art of amnesis because the JNU breed of domesticated "historians" like to brush under the carpet all the crimes of the Congress in the name of fighting "communalism". I ask is not killing such a large number of men belonging to a minority community the worst kind of communal atrocity which even puts the post Godhra carnage to shame. It is shameful the P Chidambaram should say such an unkind thing.

There is another reason for the haste in burying the crime of 1984 comitted by the Congress Party: The Nehru Dynasty was in power and as long as that dynasty is in power such crime will take place and by making a Sikh the Prime Minister of India-- a dummy Prime MInister at that--the Congress cannot hope to cover up it gory, bllod filled past. India intellectuals are ever ready to apologise for the Congress Party but people will remember.

I hope 1984 is not forgotten and we will keep the memory of the horrible crime alive even if the Ramachandra Guhas of the world conspire to consign the memory of 1984 to the River of Lethe.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


The proposition that India is a dangerous country for women cannot be gainsaid. The number of cases of violence against women in states such as Haryana, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh is increasing. In Mayawati's Uttar Pradesh alone over the past month or so more than a dozen case of rape have been reported and in the Lakimpur incident it appears that even the police were involved. In Delhi women, particularly the young ones find it difficult to lead a life free from sexual harassment. So I agree that public attention has to be directed toward the menance of sexual predation. Having said this, we have to examine the motivation behind the "Slut Walk" which is being organised by a few women in the national capital. Yesterday on TV channel, Headlines Today, I watched the debate on this issue and would like to respond to it.

I wish the women behind the Slut Walk take up real issues that pertain to the conditions of the girl child in India today instead of making a splash in the name of post colonial ideologies of gender and identity. One remarkable way of depoliticising any society is to police the terms of the debate within which a society negotiates with its constituent elements. Post colonial forms of individual choice based on sexual preference, gender, and identity skit the issue of social change by taking the problems of society out of the realm or domain of organised politics and placing them squarely within the framework of individual choice and identity. Unfortunately, the vaporisation of post colonial theories in our so-called Institutions of higher education has resulted in the elite women of Indian society mimicking western feminism and thy simply ignore the reality that confronts the girl child in this hell called India.

The women who have organised the Slut Walk claim to represent Indian women. I am certain that they are not aware of the real conditions faced by women in India and are resorting to sensational methods which only skit the real issue and trivialize the abominable conditions faced by the girl child. Are these women aware of the fact that India ranks among the highest in terms of maternal mortality? What are they doing to create public awareness about it. Are they aware that in India dowry deaths have become so common that it does not make news anymore. Slut Walks of the sort that these pyts (pretty young things) are organising will make things even worse for the girl child. Are these women aware of the declining sex ration and female fetishist that is rampant in north Indian societies. How will the Slut Walk help in making even women aware of the horrid reality of female feoticide that is taking palce all over India. By asserting their idividual right over collective destiny, the organisers of Slut Walk are playing havoc with the future of the girl child in India because of the conspiracy of silence over the real issues facing the girl child in India. I wish that the articulate and obviously educated young women take the plight of their less fortunate sisters more seriously.

The fact that India remains a dangerous country for women should make us sit up and take notice. But Slut Walks will not make India safe for young girls. The solution lies in what Dr B R Ambedkar said--educate, organise and agitate. Tamashs like slut walks are mere spectacles

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Ramachandra Guha's "New Political Gurus":A Critique

The prolofic Indian intellectual, Ramachandra Guha has published an article entitled "India's New Political Gurus" in the latest issue of Newsweek (June 20th 2011). The main purpose of this rather pointed intervention in the Indian debate over corruption and the role of the so called civil society activism spawned by the like of Dr Kiran Bedi and Anna Hazare is to belittle and trivialise the common Indian before the elite Newsweek reading audience of the world. As a historian, at least having some academic training in social and environmental history, one can expect Dr Ramachandra Guha to show a modicum of integrity in his analysis. However what he comes up with is only a tendentious piece of reportage for an American audience which is both fale in its approach and apologetic in its tone.

The likes of Baba Ramdev have entered the political space only because during the course of the last 60 years since Independence the politicians have rendered Indian democarcy into a dynastic fascist regime it is today. The COngress party started this trend in the years following the split in 1969 and today the party is only an appendage of the Gandhi-Nehru family. What Ramachandra Guha hides from the rest of the world that itn was the Nehru dynasty that strarted praticing massive corruption on a scale that essentially made India into a third world kleptocracy. The Nagarwala case, the Oil import scandals of the 1980,s the Bofors Scandal and of of course the present season of 2G Spectrum Scandal and a host of other scandals are all the creations of the Congress Party with support from their allies like the DMK. Ramachandra Guha completely distorrts the context when he cleverly shields the Congress Party from any balme for the scandals. I was really shocked when in his massive 800 odd page book India Since Gandhi we do not find any discussion on the criminal pogrom of massacre organised by the Congres Party in the days following the excecution of Indiara Gandhi by her Sikh bodyguards. So Dr Ramachandra Guha is extremely economical with the truth.

The emergence of men like Baba Ramdev upsets western educated aritocrats like Ramachandra Guha because they represent the India that is srtruggling to keep afloat unlike the middle class that battened itself with the pickings of liberalisation and its concomitant corruption. Baba Ramdev articulated his stand against the monstrous corruption in India using the rhetoric of India religion and myhology--a rhetoric that Nohandas Gandhi had perfected. Comaprng Corruption to demons from the rich reporoire of India myhology and making people aware of their inherent human and constitutional rights using the idiom of morality and religion is what every teleevalgalist in the USA does. When Baba Ramdev articulates a similar argument, the Ramachandra Guhas of the world must paint them in dark colours of superstition and reaction.

The regime in poweer very cleverly manipulated the rather simple minded Baba Ramdev and tried to create a very public split in the ranks of the growing anti corruption movement in India. The other crusade against corruption, Anna Hazare is more to the taste of Ramchandra Guha. He has gathered around him some media friendly faces like Arvind Kejariwal and Kiran Bedi and this crew is projected as the very backbone of the crusade against corruption. In fact Baba Ramdev is the one whose movement will go forward and Anna Hazare and his crew are now busy debating whether the Prime MInister should be brought under the aegis of the Lok Pal Bill.Baba Ramdev has rightly identified foreign bank accounts of Indians as the major source of unaccounted wealth and wants the Government to nationalise the ill gotten wealth stashed abroad by the corrupt Indian politicians. In a recent raid on the "ashram" of the Afro headed "saint" Satyanarayana Raju, more than 100 kilos of gold bars and 400 kilos of silver were found. There is enough black money within India for the Government to seize and Baba Ramdev is being very reasonable when he demands the return of this wealth.

Ramachandra Guha did not make any attemt to hide his glee at the brutal crackdown on the unarmed men, women and children on the night of June 4th 2011 when the regime of ManMohan Singh sent its police to attack the grounds where the peaceful demonstration was taking place. The brutal crackdown against Baba Ramdev drew the attention of the Indian Supreme Court to the unlawful act and Ramachandra Guha does not mention the criminal actions of the regime in power.

Guha calls Baba Ramdev "reactionary". I think by using the language of the Congress Party to stiganatise all its opponents as "communal" reactionary, "anti national" etc Ramchandra Guha has shown himself to be a publisist of a corrupt, criminal regime.

Friday, June 17, 2011


The concept of civil society evolved in eighteenth century Europe when the socilal organisation based on the 4 estates started disintegrating under the twin impact of secularization and economic changes engendered by the Industrial Revolution. Groups of professionals loosely associated with political factions, coffee shops, newspapers--constituting what Habermas would later designate as the public sphere--started asserting their point of view against the entrenched political and social elites. The newly emergent groups were called civil society and political philosophers like Voltaire and Rousseau and even Montesquieu termed as civil society those organised and articulate members of society that struggled for political and economic rights, freedoms and were at the forefront of what in the last century came to be called the Human Rights movement.

India does not have a civil society in the real sense of the term and if we are to apply the western concept of civil society then it is the caste based social organisations such as the Khap panchayants which constitute civil society. Along with the Khap Panchayants we can include sectarian and identity groups, bhajanna mandalis, charity organisations and the like. We harly hear any of them ever making a political demand. Civil society in India, particularly parts of northern India, are bastions of social evil and nothing good can ever come out of Indian civil society.

Suddenly we have the media speaking of Anna Hazare and his designer dress wearing cohorts as the "civil society". I find this situation absurd. 5 self appointed front runners cannot appropriate for themselves the right to speak for the dispossessed masses and who gave them the right or the mandate to represent the non political calsses. I agree that the Congress led UPA II is a corrupt regime and I have always said that the dynastic fascist Congress Party will always remain corrupt and criminal. The only way to get rid of corruption and criminalization of India is to get rid of the Congress Party by any means possible. A Lok Pal will not be able to reign in corruption. See how the Cong res managed to appoint P J Thomas as Chief Vigilance Commissioner even though he stands ac cued in a number of criminal cases. We have a situation in which the Courts at different levels alone seem to stand for decency and justice. Now this present Lok Pal bill as suggested by the Regime in power will take the Prime Minister out of the purview of the Lok Pal.This immunity to the PM does not exist even in the Constitution and by asking for a Lok Pal the so called civil society activists have further insulated the Office of the Prime Minister from proper political and judicial accountability.

There is another problem about the concept of civil society. The more articulate members of the so called civil society are always on the defensive over the issue of the RSS. The RSS represents a point of view and in a democracy it has the right to express that point of view. How can Arvind Kherjiwal call that organisation "communal". Is the Congress Party not a criminal organisation given its track record in 1984 and the present 2G scam. I feel that Corruption, dynastic fascism and criminalisation all stem from the Congress Party and the fight for a better and more civilised India should mean a struggle to liberate India from Congress rule.

Thursday, June 9, 2011


India is presently ranked very high in the list of the most corrupt counties in the world. Only Nigeria and Burkina Faso rank a few places below. With such a d distinguished ranking, may I add that the leadership of that corrupt government headed by Sonia and ManMohan Singh even want a place at the high table of diplomacy and statecraft. I have said so several times on this blog and else where that India does not deserve a security council seat given its track record of governance. Having said that let me get back to the question at hand.

A very powerful civil society movement against corruption has begun in India: this movement is partly inspired by the example of the Arab Resistance against corrupt and tyrannical regimes and partly by the disclosures made by WikiLeaks. Those who rail against WikiLeaks are unaware of the positive role played by this organisation in inspiring people across the world. All corrupt and criminal regimes such as the one in power in India, have learned to fear WikiLeaks. A Yoga Guru from the north India state of Uttar Pradesh has become the unlikely leader of the anti corruption movement and the Government of India unleashed the most barbaric acts of repression against him on the midnight of June 4th 2011.

Baba ramdev, a well respected Yoga Guru, gathered a crowd of nearly 100,000 men women and children in the Ramlila Grounds of New Delhi after getting permission from the Government. The regime was so rattled by the movement started by Baba ramdev that it deputed 4 senior Government ministers to negotiate with him. It appears that the Government of India put up a presence of negotiations in order to prepare the ground for an all out attack. Like the Night of the LOng Knives, the Congress regime unleashed its police against the followers of Baba Ramdev who were badly beaten up by the police. It must be stated very categorically that the demonstration against corruption was both peaceful and disciplined. The regime had absolutely no justification for the brutal mid night attack. The Baba himself was arrested and sent out of Delhi. The Supreme Court of India is likely to rule that this action on the part of the Sonia-ManMohan Regime was both unconstitutional and illegal.

The real reason for the panic reaction on the part of the dynastic regime in power is because for the past few years a series of scams have dented the image of the government and corruption has become a huge political issue in India. The Political Party the DMK, a South Indian regional party and a partner in the coalition in power lost the elections in Tamil Nadu solely to the public perception that the present government was irredeemably corrupt. The daughter of the former Chief Minister, Mr Karunanidhi is presently in prison awaiting trial as she was exposed as a recipient of kickbacks from the 2G Spectrum scandal in which telecom mobile licenses were issued to favored few without going through due process. It has been estimated that nearly 5.5 billion dollars were taken as kickbacks in this scandal alone and much of this ill gotten wealth is invested in tax havens like Virgin Islands, St Kitts, Swiss banks and the most favored destination of Tamil politicians, Mauritius. The corrupt Government of India refuses to take any step to get back the money on the spurious argument that going after ill gotten, illegal wealth stashed abroad is against the double taxation agreements. A totally false and baseless justification for complicity in crime. I must say that the US Treasury was able to get the notorious Swiss bankers to reveal the names of American holders of Swiss accounts and Baba ramdev wants the Indian Government to make a serious effort to retrieve India's wealth in foreign bank accounts.

The Congress Party has been in power for most of the time since Independence and one dynasty, the Nehru dynasty has controlled the party. It is believed that the Congress in neck deep in political corruption and hence will both unwilling and unable to act against political corruption. Even so the savagery of the attack against baba Ramdev has shocked the entire nation and the Congress and its alliance partners will pay a very heavy price in the next elections. As I have said right at the very beginning of this blog, Indians are used to corruption and bad governance, unlike the Chinese who expect a degree of honesty and patriotism from their Government. Yet the attack on a spiritual leader with a huge following has resulted in a sea change in the mood of the people.

The peaceful protestors were beaten up and nearly 75 of them very seriously injured. TheMahatma, Baba Ramdev himself was pushed from the dais and barely escaped with his life.A corrupt and criminal government has shown that it will use force against its own people who protest against corruption.

Monday, June 6, 2011


My regular readers would have by now realized how accurate I was in predicting the response of the UPA Government. I also pointed out that the statements made by the so-called civil society chatterers would embolden the Government to act in a reckless manner. The mid night attack on the Mahatma's satyagraha was an absolute disgrace. I think given the fact that the dynastic-fascist party the Congress is in power, we can call the mid night attack the Night of the Long Knives" the night when German thugs flexed their muscles before the advent of totalitarian rule in Germany. I had expected this response and was not surprised at what transpired. I think the Baba needs political advice and he should have been told that the fork tongued congressmen will try and deceive him.

The attack showed very clearly that the Sonia-Rahul-ManMohan dispensation is out to protect the holders of black money and are willing to use the arm of the state to crush all those who raise uncomfortable questions about the money plundered by politicians and deposited in Swiss banks and other tax havens. The Government or the regime acted too smart and thereby exposed intentions before the whole world. Now the issue of Black Money will become a huge political issue and the Congress stands as a protector of the Corrupt. I would not be surprised if this perceptions influences the electorate in the same manner as did the Emergency in 1977. The political advisors of Sonia-Man Mohan have handed the BJP a political issue on a silver platter and I hope the faction ridden BJP does not turn this into another liability as they did with the victory in Karnataka.

Baba Ramdev is a highly respected spiritual leader with a large and impressive following. The lathi charge on the followers and the brutal attack on women and children was witnessed by the whole world. The action by the police was uncalled for and the suo moto intervention by the Supreme Court will have consequences. I do hope that in the interest of the Nation Baba Ramdev keeps the BJP at an arms length and does not let that faction ridden outfit hijack his agenda. The next General Election will see the Baba Ramdev phenomenon at least in Northern India.

Even the Anna Hazare camp has come out in support of the Mahatma. I blame them for falling for the divisive tactics of the "secularists". The RSS is not a banned organization and so how can the support of the RSS for such a major political issue be battered away for the sake of New Delhi's domesticated civil society activists. I wonder why Arunditti Roy who jumped to the defence of Dr Binayak Roy is silent over the brutal attack on Baba Ramdev. Is it because she is on the side of the Establishment.

All democratic forces must condemn unequivocally the barbaric attack Mahatma Ramdev and the UPA regime has only dug its own political grave by its crimes.

Thursday, June 2, 2011


The advent of Baba Ramdev on to the public scene has electrified the Indian nation. Unlike the so called civil society activists who are at the beck and call of the corrupt Indian political establishment in the name of their misguided "secularism", Baba Ramdev is following his own independent path. The left tried its level best to discredit him by raising all kinds of questions about the health products that he advocated. Nothing came of of it. The political establishment tried to probe his charities to find out whether Baba Ramdev has violated any rule or law. The Baba is genuine material and he speaks the language of one who lives and breathes for India. His politics is based on patriotism and I wish Baba Ramdev success. I for one will fast on June 4th 2011 as a mark of respect for the Mahatma.

Corruption has become endemic in India and I think that the dynastic fascism of the Congress and other parties like the DMK is primarily responsible for the corruption. It is not an accident that the most corrupt political parties are also the ones deeply implicated in family rule and dynastic politics. The Congress started this trend and other so called "secular" parties followed suit. There is some criticism that the Baba is competing with the other Baba, Hazare. I do not think so. While I respect Anna Hazare, I do not think with the crew that he has gathered around him, Kiran Bedi, Kejariwal and the BHushans, he will be able to achieve much. The wily Congressmen have already sown the seeds of discord and the movement led by AnnaHazare is in imminent danger of collapsing. Baba Ramdev's politics is based on the power of truth and his satyagraha is carrying with it the moral authority of a whole nation. I have no hesitation in saying that like the great Mahatma, Baba Ramdev too will make the mighty bend to his will. Already there are signs of panic. The corrupt UPE Government knows that Baba Ramdev will strike a deep chord in the hearts of the Indian people and is sending ministers to placate him. Can the likes of Kapil Sibal, P Chidambaram and the like be able to even talk to a moral force like the Baba.

The Baba has stated very claerly that he seeks the return of all the money stashed by Indians abroad. The loot of India vy politicians is much greater than the loot of the East India Company. In fact the Nagarwala case under Indiara Gandhi of only of 60 lakhs, the Bofors under her son Rajiv Gandhi only of 60 crores and the 2G spectrum scandal of 60,000 crores and still counting. The people of India must realise that during the 6 years of Vajpayee there was not a single scandal and yet they voted out that Government and brought in the UPA which is the most shameful government in the whole world. Even African kleptocracies are not as venal as the Congress UPA regime.

I wish that the movement started by Baba ramdev touches the hearts and minds of the Indian people.

Monday, May 30, 2011


Niall Ferguson has won for himself the status of a "rock star" among historians. Like Fernand Braudel, he too takes history not in short bursts of time but surveys large processes of historical change and development from a comparative perspective. World historians have turned their attention to a singular aspect of woprld history especially after the onset of Globalization as an economic force backed by multi lateral institutions such as the WTO< IMF and World Bank. The rise of China from the middle of the 1970's under the leadership of Deng Xio Ping has resulted in the dram tic shift in the center of economic gravity from the Washington Consensus to the Pacific region. China holds nearly 3 trillion US dollars in her kitty and is the largest subscriber to US Treasury bonds. In the unlikely event of China deciding to undermine the stability of the dollar, the world monetary and fiscal architecture will collapse like a house of cards. Hence, historians have turned their attention to an exploration of the roots of economic growth and the concomitant social and cultural transformatiom it engenders. Long ago Karl Polanyi in his wonderful but sadly neglected The Great Transformation attempted to expalin just this question. The intellectual arrogance of Marxism and the dominance of the leftists in the field of History resulted in other theories doing the rounds including the dressed up version of Inmanuel Wallerstein, the World Systems Approach with its circular center/periphery dichotomy.

Niall Ferguson's Civilization explains the growth of the West in terms of its inherent historical processes. Competition which enabled economic production to compete for markets and patent laws that protected intell;ectual property rights enabled the western world to make the transition to economic growth. The wide spread diffusion of atrisanal skills which kept the labour market wide open, unlike the closed caste structures in socities such as India meant that there was close cooperation between those who practiced crafts and those who theorised about tham. The Scientific Revolution together with the print culture made knowledge widespread in western societies.

Ferguson writes like a true believer. He completely ignores the horrendous human tragedy that ensued in the wake of Western advance into the world of the "REST". Can there be a greated human tragedy than slavery that became the basis of Western economic dominance. Aferall as an economic historian he is well aware that there are "competitive advantages" due to low labor costs.

In spite of the fact that NIall Ferguson sings hosanas for Capitalism, this is an interesting read.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Masquerade's Wizard of Oz at Sivakami Petachi Auditorium, Chennai

On Friday, 20th May 2011 my daughter and I watched the Wizard of Oz. I remember reading the Puffin
version of the story to my daughter when she was a little girl and the checked dress of Dorothy made
quite an impression on her. She even set aside a green Magyar sleeve frock aside as her Dorothy dress
and named a white stray dog which she persuaded us to adopt as Toto. So Wizard of Oz was a must see
for both of us.
The Chennai Theatre Group called Masquerade put up an adaptation of this story in Chennai recently. A
simple and innovative set design was the main feature of this production. The props were kept to a bare
minimum and the stage lighting was excellent. The yellow brick road was realistically done with a sliver
of light on the stage. Obviously Harshavardhan Ganesh is talented and it showed. The costumes were all
well designed and suited the character. The ‘Cowardly Lion’ played by Shankar Chockalingam was
dressed in a yellow suit complete with tail and all. Rahul Murali, the Tinman, looked metallic with silver
grease paint on his face. It was Neetha Srikanth as the Wicked Witch of the West who took all the
honours for acting. Her performance was electric and there was a certain menace in her demeanor. She
seemed a perfect witch and her sidekick the “cat” looked pathetic as he suffered at her hands.
Frank Baum’s classic tale set in the corn fields of Kansas is really a parable dressed up as a fairy tale: a
story of self discovery and realization. If the yellow brick road is the magic path to self awareness
offered by religion, a straight path to certitude, the four travelers in our play find out that all the
knowledge they sought was within them. Thus the Cowardly Lion discovers that he is brave, the
Scarecrow finds out that he is brainy afterall and the Tinman finds out that he has a heart at the end of
the adventure and even Little Dorothy has within her the ability to return back to her farm in Kansas.
The director has taken some liberty with the text and the innovations such as the Mylapore Mami, could
have been avoided. I am not opposed to innovation as such but a classic text such as the Wizard of Oz
cannot be amended to suit the taste of a contemporary audience. The dance movements introduced to
represent movement and change of scene and tempo derived from Michael Jackson’s Moonwalk was
stunning. Chennai does have talent in the field of theatre.
I enjoyed the play immensely for two reasons. To a large extent it recaptured the lost wonder of
childhood and the innocence of a era long gone. Second the screen adaptation and the script was tight
and well organized leaving few loose ends. And Mitra Vishvesh as Dorothy was the icing on the cake. She
delivered her lines like a seasoned professional and she will go a long way in Theatre.
After a long time I saw a play that I really enjoyed

Thursday, May 5, 2011


Early this morning the US Special Forces acting on a tipoff launched an attack on a villa near Abbotsbad, a town 150 kilometers from the capital. The US attack was successful and without the loss of life the master mind on 9/11 was killed. It would have been foolish to take him prisoner as that would have encouraged hostages situations. So he was killed and no one can fault the US forces for this successful attack. I must say that there will be a sense of closure for a national trauma and my thoughts go out to those who lost their loved ones on that day in September2001.

The death of Osama bin Laden will certainly weaken the al-qaeda network and I am sure the Special Forces will continue the hunmt for other key elements. Unexpectedly this victory has given Obama's presidential relection bid a big boost and I ma sure he will cash in for what it is worth.

The situation in Pakistan will deteriorate and it may be time to call the Army out to lead. The Zardar Government has helped the US to carry out drone attacks and men like Raymond Davis on whom I have written are really the unsung heroes. But for such men thsi operation wopuld not have been a success.

Fist things first. USA gave an accurate and truthful account of the mid night encounter in which Osama bin Laden was killed. Had the same event happened in my part of the world, the Government would have lied saying that the man was armed and was using women as human shield. A rifle or M-16 would have been placed next to him to make it appear that the truth has been said. I appreciate the Obama Administration and the Navy Seal VI unit for resisting the temptation to score brownie points. Second, as I have often said the Pakistani Administration was abetting in the crime of shielding Osama. The fact that he was found within meters of the Military Base at Abbotabad shows that the ISI and the Army knew of the high value asset located there. It is quite possible that the Pakistanis surrendered Osama bin Laden to the US for some concessions in Afghanistan. The truth will eventually come out. For the moment let us assume that the civilian administration knew little of value. The CIA, NSA, the Department of Defense handed the entire Operation Gerimono is a professional manner, and they deserve a big round of applause.

There has been a controversy over the burial--some would even say, hasty and thoughtless--of the body of Osama bin Laden. The fact is that a tomb or burial site anywhere in South Asia would become a magnet for would be jehadis and a cult would have grown around it. A lieux de memoire is uncalled for and an anonymous burial was the need of the hour. The body of the terrorist could have been burnt and disposed off. Instead the Arabian Sea has been polluted with this corpse. The Obama Administration did what it thought best and it need not have revealed the facts about the disposal of the body. A picture of the dead Osama should have been published in order to quell the nay sayers and the inevitable conspiracy mongers. Why there was such haste is disposing off the remains of Osama bin Laden. USS Carl Vince and its identity ought not to have been revealed.

The hunt for Osama bin Laden was long and wearisome. Countless false leads and deliberately misleading clues were sifted in order to establish the identity of al-Kuwati the courier whose existence was first revealed by Khalili,a Git Mo detainee. In fact the success of the operation shows that the policy of questioning the detainees in a thorough manner was not off the mark. The CIA did a good job in tracking down the fugitive. I do not know why the lack of internet connectivity was troubling. The man was using a data card and it is just possible that WI FI connectivity was there. As for telephone who has land lines in these days of mobile phones. I just do not think that these were important clues that led to the identification of Osama bin Laden. I would like one of the 22 seals who participated in this encounter to write the history of this extraordinary event which in the words of a great historian of ages past, an event likely to be remembered for eons to come.

On 29th April 2011, President Barack Obama signed an excecutive order that authorised the Navy Seals VI unit to seek and kill Osama Bin Laden, the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks on the targets in USA. Are we to believe that the US president has the authority to order the execution of those deemed inimical to the US. Is this argument that USA can violate the sovereignty of a state, enter its territory, carry out a clandestine operation, pick up the evidence and leave, all actions done in accordance to domestic or international law. No court of law has ever convicted the target of the May 1st attack and therefore what is the legal basis of Obama's actions. I have no problem at all with the killing of terrorists, but I am raising a larger issue: the legal and constitutional validity of the presidential order of April 29th 2011.

The nearest example that comes to my mind is the infamous case of Adolf Eichmann who was captured by the Israelis in Brazil and brought to Jerusalem for trial and execution. In this case, the Government of Israel acted according to the testimony of several who gave evidence in the Nuremberg trials. Eichmann was indicted for crimes against humanity and there was ample eyewitness accounts of his direct involvement in the crimes at several camps in Europe. Further there was also the domestic legislation in the new state of Israel that made the capture and trial of German war criminals a responsibility of the Government of Israel and international law went along with this extended interpretation of the doctrine of eminent domain over German war crimes claimed by Israel. I want to know whether there is any provision in US law that enables or authorises the US president o carry out attacks on targets chosen by the US. I am not going into the merits of this particular case. I am raising a larger legal issue. Of course the USA can come out ans declare that they violated the sovereignty of Pakistan as they believe that the situation in that country makes it a "terrorist state" and hence the USA is not obligated to be constrained by the principles of international law.

Pakistan has become a haven for terrorists of every kind and therefore it is not a state in the true sense of the world. It does not have full control over its territory. Sayed Hafiz, a known terrorist is moving about freely in the country. Dawood Ibrahim a known criminal is being protected by the ISI. Since Pakistan does not have control over its territory and its so called civilian government has no monopoly over the use of force within the borders, USA can make a strong case for the violation of the sovereignty of Pakistan. As far as Osama bin Laden is concerned, though there is no evidence that can stand up in a trial court, the law of national self defence does permit nations to defend themselves.

There is now controversy over the killing of the man. I had raised this issue in my very first blog on this subject. The Obama Administration made things difficult for itself by giving contradictory version of the sequence of events leading to the killing of Osama. First they said that he fired at the raiding assault party and Leon Panetta stood by this version. Then they said quite truthfully that that he was not armed. This has not gone well. USA should have stood by one version. Then they said that he used a woman as a human shield and then they back tracked. Now both these contradictions are fueling speculations about the manner in which Osama was killed. There is even one theory doing the rounds that Osama bin Laden was killed in cold blood. I do not subscribe to this version.

Finally the pictures. THe most gruesome image was of the fall of the Twin Towers. How is it that USA is not revealing the pictures of the dead Osama bin Laden. Is there something in the pictures.