Home » Archive for November, 2012

What may happen when farmers DO get fair price for land by industry: a case study from Sanand, Gujarat!

Editor’s note: When farmers do not get fair compensation for their land by the industries, we know what happens. But when they do, you may often see a grotesque comedy with tragic consequences. The suddenness of development, the unexpected windfall is never digested easily – the question one may ask – why even in its ‘fair’ moments, development may do unforeseen damage to people? The present report goes into some depth of the matter and you may imagine the rest. Money: quick disposal? Sanand, Gujarat: Sanand town, site of Tata Motors’ Nano plant and ready to welcome... 

110 Bihar officials sacked for Rs 6,000 crore MGNREGSscam: 120 panchayat members targeted too!

MGNREGS Bihar: work in progress! Patna: In what seems a prompt reaction to a survey by the Centre for Environment and Food Security, Delhi, the Bihar government has sacked 110 officials for corruption in the state’s rural job guarantee scheme, Rural Development Minister Nitish Mishra said on Thursday. On the one hand one wonders how the probe initiated by the government yielded such quick results, and on the other hand one may find satisfaction in the government’s prompt response to the survey report. Whether the corrupt officials retaliate with legal action against the government in the... 

Solar energy for Bihar agriculture, solar business and govt policy: two reports!

  Patna: sun god has proved to be the reigning deity of Bihar with the increasing popularity of the Chhath festival. In keeping with the ancient tradition followed in Bihar, it is now time to give some secular and practical attention to the sun in Bihar. The following two reports do just that.   Solar pump site: Bihar Bunty Singh is a large farmer in Bihar’s Gopalganj district. In the absence of reliable supply of electricity, he used to incur Rs 2.42 lakh a year on diesel to fire his diesel generator (DG) set and a 5-HP pump to irrigate his 40 hectares of farm land. Last year, he bought... 

The MNREGA loot in Bihar: audit says 6,000 crores gone!

  Development as loot! Patna: in yet another story of trickle down development, it seems the trickle rarely reaches the bottom, benefitting those targeted by the plan. The trickle meanders along the mid-levels and a large part of it gets absorbed before reaching the ground. By now there is a need to document in precise details exactly how the massive redistribution works out, the mechanisms adopted by the scamsters at every level. Even the greatest optimists are often left exclaiming helplessly ‘something of it must have reached the needy!’ The trouble is you are in no position to call... 

Will India’s pride turn to shame: Akash 2, world’s cheapest tablet made in China?

  Kapil Sibal at Aakash 2 launch! Aakash 2 — the world’s cheapest tablet, also one of the most awaited one since there’s no sign of it in the market yet, could be a Chinese product after all. According to an exclusive report by Hindustan Times, DataWind founders, Suneet and Raja Singh Tuli, may have gotten hold of the device from manufacturers in China for a mere USD 42 (Rs 2,263), the same price at which it was sold to the Indian government. The HT report shows that DataWind procured approximately 10,000 of these “A-13” tablets from four manufacturers in Shenzhen and Hong Kong between... 

Sunday Editorial- Aam Admi Party [AAP]: story of a proud mango!

by Ratnakar Tripathy Kejriwal: ‘wake up mango man!’ Even as Arvind Kejriwal named his party Aam Aadmi (common man) Party, there is already a page on it in Wikipedia with some basic information. In reaction, ready with statistics and sarcasm, Congress leader and Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari told reporters ‘There are 1453 political parties registered with the Election Commission. So, if one more is added, this will only strengthen our democratic fabric’. The bad joke continued as he said ‘The Aam Aadmi (common man) is synonymous with the Congress since 1885... 

Beyond ‘dhishum dhishum': Patna Univ elections to have JNU style debates, to be televised too!

  Beating with argument: not hockey sticks! Patna: think of student politics union elections and all you can think of the money power, the violence, the regular scuffles and bloodshed, and even kidnappings. But things may change for the better very soon. Since the PU student elections are being held after 29 years, this may be the right moment to make a new beginning. PU vice-chancellor Shambhu Nath Singh said: “The debate of the presidential candidates would allow the students to know them and their agenda.” Students and teachers of the university are happy about the planned event. A... 

‘Fingerprint 26/11′: a play that tries to make sense of Kasab and his violence!

A scene from ‘Fingerprint 26/11′ Kolkata: Ajmal Kasab’s hanging brought great satisfaction to a good part of India who bother to follow such news. While those who lost their own in the Mumbai nightmare seem to find some meaning in what may seem a senseless tragedy in their lives, there is also the big world of the vicarious and the voyeur who turned cheerleaders in a game of blood lust. Possibly the worst example was a proud report in the Bihar press that the rope for Kasab’s noose was made by prisoners in Buxar jail. Can patriotism get more mindless? Now that the short, stocky... 

Villagers in Ghaghra, Jharkhand show initiative: build their own little irrigation dam!

An earthen dam in Jharkhand Gunia (Gumla): when you look at typical development news in the papers or the TV channels, one third of the news may be about the planned projects, another one third about what has been implemented with uncertain results and the rest about what has NOT been done. In sum, the citizen is always waiting for the fatherly-motherly state to come to her rescue and get her out of the mess. Not always though! Once in a while people decide not to wait and take their fate in their own hands. This is of course possible when the solution comes through relatively small development... 

Ghoora [घूरा] – Gangnam in Ghagha Ghat, Patna: Holy Psy!

  Ratnakar-Tripathy By Ratnakar Tripathy Ghagha Ghat is no boondocks! It is just 200 meters away from Gandhi Ghat, the most glamorized ghat of Patna, meant to be a showpiece for the new shining Bihar.  It is also where I live. I believe I am well-placed in life, musically, if not otherwise. Everyday as I sit down to work and at times when in deep slumber, I get reminded of human mortality. For Ghagha is just a 2-minute walk from Gulabi Ghat, the cremation hub for my part of the city. As the funeral processions move hurriedly along the lane, they chant ‘Ram Naam Satya Hai [Ram’s name is... 
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