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Posts Tagged ‘Commonwealth Games’

The truth behind sting operations

November 2, 2010 3 comments
Media-and-politician nexus to keep the people from understanding issues by throwing an occassional victim in front of a baying crowd. (Cartoon courtesy - indiadaily.org.). Click for larger image.

Media-and-politician nexus to keep the people from understanding issues by throwing an occassional victim in front of a baying crowd. (Cartoon courtesy - indiadaily.org.). Click for larger image.

farce is not the only thing that fascinates Bahal. He’s done a set of about 60 sting operations for various television channels, the best known among them being Operation West End that shows politicians taking a bribe from undercover reporters for defence contracts. “A lot of colleagues are a little shocked by sting operations. They feel this somehow violates the tenets of journalism. But what we’re doing now, the Western media did 60 or more years ago. There is a wealth of case-law on this: that giving money is not entrapment if there is prior intimation that the person is ready to take money,” he says.

In the cash-for query scam, that was broken by him (where reporters did a sting operation by recording MPs who accepted money for asking questions in Parliament), he says he did not single out MPs from any pre-decided set of political groups. “We were asked to depose before the Rajya Sabha committee. (Former RBI Governor) Bimal Jalan asked us how we chose the MPs we recorded. I had to tell him: we didn’t choose them. They were suggested to us by middlemen (‘dalal’ is the word he used) who acted as the go-between. It was all very organised, and that suggests what a huge business it was. We didn’t go to them. They came to us”. (read more via Under the covers).

Media is itself a scam

The recent CWG ‘scams’ is another scam – where media has itself been partisan. Kalmadi has been made a scape goat – even though he had less 3% (less than Rs.1800 crores) of the purported Rs.70,000 crores budget for CWG. Yet the media made out a huge song and dance about Suresh Kalmadi. We know who the media was gunning for. Who exactly was the media protecting?

It is the ‘Western’ style of empty journalism which makes me twitch.

How much can you blame a player - after a rich sting-journalist waves huge amounts of money in front of a poor Pakistani cricketer. (Cartoon by  by Satish Acharya.).

How much can you blame a player - after a rich sting-journalist waves huge amounts of money in front of a poor Pakistani cricketer. (Cartoon by by Satish Acharya.).

GFFIM

And in all this The Protector of the Indian interests, the Great, Fearless, Free Indian Media, (GFFIM) goes along. Ambles along. For the last six years, GGFFIM (and many others, too) ignored the CWG issues – till it was too late to do anything. They have raised CWG issues 60 days before the games. What  earthly benefit will this give us?

Is the media not being mercenary and opportunistic? Trying to encash on readers’ anxieties and insecurities? What was Indian media doing for the last few years! Pretty much what Organizing Committee-CWG was doing. Taking the short and easy way to ‘achieve’ their objectives! Dubious and shady objectives. After this kind of media circus, pocketing a few crores seems so harmless – if not some fun! I would even say …

After putting up a good show, Kalmadi & OC Team seem less guilty to me.

At least, lesser than Indian media?

Commonwealth Games – Politics of Collusion

September 28, 2010 19 comments
Why should only the Congress misue CBI - let all parties misuse the CBI! (Cartoon by Kirtish Bhatt).

Why should only the Congress misuse CBI - let all parties misuse the CBI! (Cartoon by Kirtish Bhatt).

In the beginning

The Commonwealth Games (CWG) proves the point that democracy breeds a collusive polity. In the beginning was the BJP.

1. Why did Vajpayee Government bid for CWG? It defies all common sense. The Commonwealth is an idea that is long dead – and definitely irrelevant.

2. If it was persuaded by the Anglo-Saxon Bloc, what is the quid-pro-quo? What did India get from CWG? This Commonwealth benefits the British! Let them host it, pay for it, support it and ‘persuade’ us to attend.

3. Yesterday, Times Now TV debate tells that the Vajpayee Government paid out some thousands of dollars for each vote to ‘win’ the right to ‘host’ these games? Delhi beat Hamilton, New Zealand for this ‘privilege’?

Sorrier tale, I have not heard in many years. Even if the Vajpayee Govt paid nothing for this ‘privilege’?

We’ll walk hand in hand …

Coming to Kawngressis: –

1. If the Kawngress had an iota of honesty, they should have protested this bid in the first place. When the BJP /NDA was in power.

2. Having got this fait accompli, the Kawngress should have been determined to do this at least cost, minimum shosha, tamasha – like Mani Shanker Iyer has proposed.

3. They should have put some good, honest bureaucrats on the job to achieve point no.2. Not allowed the likes of Mike Fennell and Mike Hooper to abuse Indian people, hospitality – and spend lakhs on them every month for this privilege. Rs.6.0 crore spent on them in the last few years.

A job so badly botched up, I have not seen in the last many years. Any way you look at it, the CWG is a case of collusive polity. And no one, but no one, comes out of this clean or decent. Not in my books at least.

Corruption has got more coverage - drowning out the other related issues. (Cartoon by by IRFAN; courtesy - cartoonistirfan.blogspot.com.).

Corruption has got more coverage - drowning out the other related issues. (Cartoon by by IRFAN; courtesy - cartoonistirfan.blogspot.com.).

Craving approval – without actions and achievements

This bit about promoting sports is another bad idea. Why is the State getting involved in the sports business. If it has to get involved, it must promote Indian sports.

Why is India building this huge infrastructure to promote Western sports. Why do we want to prove to the world that we can be good at Western sports. Like a columnist put it

Burning money on a gala sporting event does not make us a super-power

Anyway, what has sports got to do with nationhood. This nation-competition-sports is one bad idea, which must be killed.

Try as hard as anyone may, I just cannot be moved by this idea. No Indian can put up a good show of something as dishonest as CWG. I am not surprised that CWG is going to be a disaster! It will take a Great Disbeliever in the idea of India, to put up a good CWG.

Great Indian shows

Is it that Indians cannot put up a good show?

About ten years ago, India put up a great show. Unrivaled in the last 100 years, at least, by any country. It was called Y2K.

The Western world was at the cusp of an epic disaster – Y2K. Computer systems had used two-digit number to denote years. In 20th century, this was efficient use of computing power when raw computing power itself was expensive. Coming to the end of 20th century, when the number would go from 1999 to 2000, it was expected the logic used by computers would crash.

Posted by Shreyas Navare on Friday, August 6, 2010 at 10.35 pm (Courtesy - blogs.hindustantimes.com.). Click for larger image.

Posted by Shreyas Navare on Friday, August 6, 2010 at 10.35 pm (Courtesy - blogs.hindustantimes.com.). Click for larger image.

The West needed to rewrite the entire code for their industrial systems. And they had no spare programming capacity to do it. Enter India. In a matter of 7 years, desi, backward Indians obtained contracts, understood programming designs, deciphered the code, redesigned the new system, coded and tested their new systems, trained users and handed over fully working systems on D-date. It is 10 years now. These Indian systems continue to run the Western world.

Most recently, the corrupt and scam-tainted Satyam put up a faultless show at South Africa Football World Cup.

What has money got to do

Let us be clear – corruption has nothing to do with this fiasco. A highly corrupt China put up a great show at Beijing Olympics.

The CWG problem goes deeper. Even if the CWG were to go off smoothly,  I can’t be proud of this. Even if, this corruption allegations were poppycock! I have no answer to a simple question? Why are we doing the CWG? And there is no good answer to this question.

Write to me. If you have one reason. Just one, honest reason. Why should we host and promote this hoax.

Can you really motivate someone to do a good job on Commonwealth Games? I wonder ...

Can you really motivate someone to do a good job on Commonwealth Games? I wonder ...

The Three faces of corruption

August 6, 2010 4 comments

The world can think of India, whatever it wants. What an Indian thinks of himself – and his country, is more important. To me, at least.

Harder, quicker - and poorer!  |  Cartoonist Ajit Ninan in Ninan's World on 30 Jul 2010, 1301 hrs IST; image source & courtesy - timesofindia.com

Harder, quicker – and poorer! | Cartoonist Ajit Ninan in Ninan’s World on 30 Jul 2010, 1301 hrs IST; image source & courtesy – timesofindia.com

Corruption in 3 new flavours!

The latest hot-button are the Common Wealth Games (CWG) – and the corruption, it is engendering!

What everyone is agreed upon is that CWG is about India’s prestige. It is agreed by all, that  India needs  to put up a good show. Like what Beijing did some months ago, during the Olympics.

India is on ‘show’ – and a ‘good’ show is what India must put up! What will the world think? And I agree. India is on show.

But not in the manner above.

Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn!

The world can think of India, whatever it wants. What an Indian thinks of himself – and his country, is far more important. To me, at least.

This hankering for attention is pathetic. Especially, for the world’s oldest  civilization. Morally, wanting prestige by hosting international sports events is skating on thin ice. Very thin ice. Prestige, without doing anything substantial. Definitely corruption in my book.

Deeper and more problematic than  pocketing some money!

One: The corruption by Indian netas. These netas are trying to buy prestige for themselves among other leaders of the world. Why did Vajpayee bid for these stupid games? Could the Kawngress not get a clean bureaucrat to roll out these games!

This cartoon is worth much more than a 1000 words!  |  Ajit Ninan; 26 Jul 2010, 1249 hrs IST; image source & courtesy - timesofindia.com

This cartoon is worth much more than a 1000 words! | Ajit Ninan; 26 Jul 2010, 1249 hrs IST; image source & courtesy – timesofindia.com

GFFIM

And in all this The Protector of the Indian interests, the Great, Fearless, Free Indian Media, (GFFIM) goes along. Ambles along.

For the last six years, GGFFIM (and many others, too) ignored the CWG issues – till it was too late to do anything. They have raised CWG issues 60 days before the games. What  earthly benefit will this give us?

Kalmadi & OC Team seem less guilty to me – at least, lesser than Indian media?

Is the media not being mercenary and opportunistic? Trying to encash on readers’ anxieties and insecurities? What was Indian media doing for the last few years!

Two: The corruption of the media – which is creating anxiety and worries by raising issues when it is unproductive. They should have raised this issue when something is possible.

Chasing dinosaurs in a swamp

Putting up a good CWG show will make not one whit of a difference to the world.

Anyway, who knows or cares any more, about the British Commonwealth? The idea of bidding for this ‘privilege’ escapes me. Completely.

The nearly Rs.30,000 crores that have been spent on a new airport, games villages, new stadia, chasing away Delhi’s beggars are bad ideas. All of them.

And a waste of money.

Money taken away from people, who have so little of it anyway. Is there one fibre of morality in this extortion from the poor!

We as taxpeyers and voters want the 'prestige', pomp and splendour, but not also the pleasure of nitpicking.  |  Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; 3 Aug 2010, 1343 hrs IST; source & courtesy - timesofindia.com

We as taxpayers and voters want the ‘prestige’, pomp and splendour, but not also the pleasure of nitpicking. | Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; 3 Aug 2010, 1343 hrs IST; source & courtesy – timesofindia.com

Promoting sports they say!

India must be a great sporting nation, they tell me.

To impress the world, I guess! Good at British sports, milord? And who will be good at Indian sports – like polo, chess, kabaddi, horse-racing?

Why are we desperate to do well at British sports? How will that make us a better nation? Or make an Indian think better of himself? How much do people care for these Great British sports? The reception given to victorious cricket teams displays our bankruptcy.

Pretty much what Organizing Committee-CWG was doing. Taking the short and easy way to ‘achieve’ their objectives! Dubious and shady objectives.

Three: But, most importantly, is the corruption within us. Why do we want prestige and respect without doing anything substantial? Hosting CWG games as a shortcut to prestige or approval is a terrible idea.

After this kind of circus, pocketing a few crores seems so harmless – if not some fun! I would even say …

Just deserts! And this leaves me in a dubious position of having Mani Shaker Aiyar on my side.

Not the best of company to keep!


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