Archive for the ‘india’ tag
I won’t talk about the recent shameful and dreadful terror attack on Mumbai per se – but on what to do next. My thoughts on how to fight this menace; not that I’m an expert… but just my two cents I guess.
We can’t hope for situations like this to get addressed by mere rhetoric or patriotism. We do need an investment in basic police infrastructure so that a Karkare doesn’t die fighting AK56s with a .303 rifle and a half sleeve bullet-proof vest! So that a bunch of boys do not come sailing in boats, land on the Gateway of India and start firing indiscriminately and take hundreds hostage; without the Information Bureau having no clue about it!
We do need a solid security infrastructure to fight this; maybe we already have one. But beyond building infrastructure we need reforms as well – why can’t we pay our armed forces and police better? Why do we raise a hue and cry over the 24 eggs that an army officer gets? You pay peanuts and you get monkeys… right?
And, we need to leave politics behind when it comes to fighting terror. Why do we need a Shivraj Patil as the home minister who has no idea about what he needs to do and has the audacity to continue staying in office despite terror attacks every few weeks? Now that he has quit (or fired) it seems fixed – but is it really? Is it about Patil himself, or is this a larger issue? Why does LK Advani have to say “Oh this is worse than the last time…”?
And, we need to fight corruption. It takes a bicycle, and not a passport, to come from Nepal/Bangladesh to India and then 200 Rs for a ration card. How can we allow this to happen? How can we sell our country for 200Rs? Is this how we grow at 8% year on year I wonder!
The Bottom-line: the main culprit is our so called ‘spirit’ to move on… heck how can we get so thick skinned. We’re concerned today, but will soon forget it like the hundreds other terror attacks in this country before. I think we only deserve it. I liked what Suhel Seth said yesterday on a TV channel – we need surgery not band-aids… we don’t need elections; call a national emergency and fix it NOW…
I’m sure this is the question most tax payers have in mind over the proposed oil cess on income tax. Agreed that crude oil has touched $135 and the increase in the price needs to be passed on to consumers. But pass it on to the ‘consumer’, not the tax payer alone. Anyway, the price of petrol consists of heavy duties necessary for funding the government. Why can’t the duties be reduced? The budgeting would have been done keeping in mind an absolute number in mind. Now that the base has changed, why can’t the percentage of duty be reduced so as to maintain the same absolute number? Why is the government pretending to subsidize when the reality is that it gets greedy every time the base price changes (duties keep going up in the same proportion).
And, the big question is why can’t they just increase the price of the commodity for the consumer? Why burden the tax payer? Well I guess I know the answer – to appease the ‘poor’, majority voter! How long will we be penalized for creating wealth?
Yes, believe it or not, Rs 16.71 crore (USD 4m+) was the power bill for the President of India for the past 5 years while the prime minister of the country spent Rs 37.56 lakhs (USD 90k+) over the past 3 years. Forget about the money spent imagine the amount of ‘energy’ wasted. Wonder if the Govt. of India will ever “go green“!
Btw, these figures were revealed as a “Right to Information” response, so guess the citizens of India can now make the government bare it all. Good!