Sunday, July 27, 2008

Serial Bomb Blasts make a dent on India's Intelligence departments.

On consecutive days in the last weekend of July , serial bomb blasts in Bangalore & Ahmedabad have already taken a toll of 50 innocent victims. The reaction from the government has been timely but banal. The President, PM & Home Minister etc have mouthed the stereotyped but ineffective platitudes about it being a cowardly act.As if such rebuke will force the criminals to sink into their shoes!

Every politician has asked the nation to be calm and not be provoked into creating communal disharmony when there has been no communal disharmony present at all. It is another matter that most of the communal riots are always initiated by politicians themselves rather than they being spontaneous!

Basically every citizen is scared and want this menace of faceless violence to stop once and for all. The question that is on every body's lips is what is the role of IB,SIB & CBI in gathering enough intelligence to prevent/anticipate acts? Do our intelligence professionals have network among the new age criminals? Or are they too busy serving their political masters in tapping the phone lines of their masters' political adversaries and other lesser mortals ?

The latest fad among the security professionals is to concentrate all their activities on the email-traces and mobile call records. While this is a good tool to catch the amateur criminals, its effect on seasoned criminals like the bomb blasters will have little effect.

Firstly, as far as email-trace back is concerned there are various software available on the Internet where one can protect one's anonymity while sending an email. In such a software, volunteers help to bounce a email through a relay of nodes from the origin to the destination. The volunteer is in the network to be anonymous in the first place. So the person who is traced back will in probability be a last node in the relay rather than the original sender. In effect, its very easy to hide your traces on the net while sending an email.

Secondly, email & call records are more of a reactive tool than proactive. Meaning they can help you in discovering communication traces rather than prevent such traces to occur in the first place.

Finally, there is no substitute for good old "physical" infiltration of the criminals network, their place of work, their friends , their places of worship etc. etc. That may be a hard way to work instead of spending nerdish hours in front of a hacker's computer. But its still effective provided the IB has a will as well as a plan to do so.

With Maoists fighting an armed guerrilla warfare in the rural red corridor of India and the faceless terrorists holding center stage in the metro cities; the government will do well to understand that intelligence should be proactive in anticipating such acts of violence.Merely reacting to such acts by arresting people on the basis of emails will be considered to be a eyewash to the citizens of India.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

CPM expels Somnath Chatterjee! When will India expel anti-national CPM ?

He brings disaster upon his nation who never sows a seed, or lays a brick, or weaves a garment, but makes politics his occupation.~ Kahlil Gibran

That probably sums up the profiles of most of the Politburo (whatever that means! probably it means a coterie.) members of the Communist Party of India (M with or without plus a L). Think of Prakash Karat or Sitaram Yechuri or Nilotpol Basu or Biman Bose etc. etc. Whats their profession ? None.
They are what one would call whole timers of the party. If they are expelled from the party , they will starve/beg to death because they have no other marketable skills to survive. They did not spend any effort to learn any. Maybe , they will start another political party and live on their members.

Somnath Chatterjee , who was expelled today by the above members of his party , at least can fall back on his law practice like his earlier adversary Siddharta Shankar Ray, ex-CM of West Bengal. The official reason for Somnath's expulsion is of course , that he did not resign from the Speaker's post as asked by his party high command. The party high command forgets that under the Indian constitution , a speaker is above any party line. Once his term as speaker ends, he can then probably , come under party dictates again.

But then when did the communists have any regard for the Indian constitution? Their party's constitution is bigger than that. As always, national interest comes behind party's interest. The commies in India bloat their chest thinking that they are fulfilling an important role for something as outdated and vague as a "world communist movement" where "petty" things like national constitution can be passed over. Rumour goes that to fulfill such an important mission communists are not averse to being funded by American sympathisers and organisations although they denounce any strategic relations with the American government.

Besides what greater pleasure can unskilled bummers like Karat , Biman or Sitaram get, than by humbling a skilled professional lawyer like Somnath Chatterjee? No one is above their party's law , they scream. Even someone who has given 4 decades of service to the party and given the party a mass respectability that it lacks. People like Karat forget that , " the brotherhood of men does not imply their equality. Families have their fools and their men of genius, their black sheep and their saints, their worldly successes and their worldly failures. A man should treat his brothers lovingly and with justice, according to the deserts of each. But the deserts of every brother are not the same (Aldous Huxley)".

One positive thing about the trust vote yesterday has been the riddance of the leftists from the national policy making bodies. The leftists had paralysed all reforms oriented policies for the last 4 years . We hope that some of them including PSU disinvestment, pension reforms, PF reforms, labour reforms , FDI in retail, aviation etc. etc. will see the light of the day. The hegemony of the leftists still remain in three states which are slowly entering into a realm of backwardness that can only be removed once they are voted out from Bengal, Tripura & Kerala.

If and when that is done (it may take a whole generation because backwardness has to be experienced to wake up the citizens of these states from the slumber that they are in , now), the country will rid itself of a regressive educated devil called the Communist Party of India.
(Cartoon Source : Ninan's World, Times of India)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Cat (sorry, cash) is finally out of the bag. A disgraced Indian Parliament

Power does not corrupt. Fear corrupts, perhaps the fear of the loss of power.~ John Steinbeck

On the second day of the debate on trust vote centred around the nuclear agreement, the symbolic explosion finally happens inside the Indian Parliament, Lok Sabha.

Ashok Argal, a BJP M.P from Morena, Madhya Pradesh submits at the well of the house & proudly displays a wad of 1000 rupee bundles for the benefit of national television. It appears that the M.P was being bribed by the Congress-SP combine to vote for the UPA government in the trust vote to be held in the evening .

Earlier in the day, some BSP M.Ps submitted a written complaint to the speaker that the CBI officers were threatening them to vote for UPA or face some criminal action.

No wonder that the inflation has touched nearly 12% this week. There's too much money chasing junks (disguised as goods) in the Indian market.

Till now, the gossip was just that, a gossip.

Finally the country has proof that the elected representatives of the Indian people do not a care a f**k about the nation that selects them. All they care about is getting to power & staying in power and enjoy the wads of money that just seem to chase them for any exercise of their absolute power.

They deserve to be first stoned by the public & then publicly hanged from the lamp posts that adorn Rajpath in the national capital.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Somnath Chatterjee: A leftist but civilised Speaker of Indian Lok Sabha!

At least two-thirds of our miseries spring from human stupidity, human malice and those great motivators and justifiers of malice and stupidity: idealism, dogmatism and proselytizing zeal on behalf of religious or political ideas - Aldous Huxley
Every time one hears a left leader speak one gets one or both of two kinds of feelings:

1. They sound like student debaters ,in college, zealously speaking for/against the motion. This is specially true if these leaders do not have any experience of execution of any responsible task and/or governance . Prakash Karat, Nilotpal Basu, Sitaram Yechuri are prime examples of such kind of speakers .

2. They completely renounce civility & logic in their speech.

Listening to a wildly gesticulating Md. Salim speak today in Parliament , I got the same feeling. While opening the debate , the PM had by courtesy thanked the Left architects of his government for forming the coalition 4 years back. And in his reply,Md. Salim , like a school debater screamed aloud that the left did not support the Congress to get the a "certificate" today from the PM.

Who is giving the leftists a certificate , Mr. Salim ? The PM is merely acknowledging the support that he had received 4 years back. Period. Why do you not have the character of a civilised human being to note that , in silence and carry on with your nuclear debate?

Prakash Karat made it a point to withdraw support to the ruling government at a time when the PM of India was in the G8 summit! It was a gesture timed to humiliate the PM of India ( and not just a leader of the Congress ) in an international forum. He has called the PM by various names including a betrayer of national interest in his speeches..

But every time Karat opens his dirty mouth , he forgets that normal people clearly understand that the leftists will dramatically dump their country, friends & even their parents when it comes to putting up their dogmatic ideological point of view. They always bring misery although they guise it under "national interest".

It is thus ironic that a leftist member , Somnath Chatterjee , has been presiding over the Lok Sabha as a "speaker" trying his best to get some civility in the proceedings and talking of maintenance of constitutional dignity of the speaker's post.

Somnath has done a real good job till now and much unlike the irresponsible ideologues of his party. Somnath has even defied the dictates of his party to resign from the speaker's post once the leftists destabilised the elected government by withdrawing support a fortnight back . In a way, this is a resounding slap on the faces of the likes of Yechuri & Karat and their uncivilised behaviour.

But the litmus test of Somnath Chatterjee's career will arrive , if he has to cast the deciding vote in case of a tie tomorrow when the confidence motion is put to vote. Constitutional experts suggest that in case of a "tie" it is the done thing for the speaker to maintain status quo that is to keep the government in rule.

The speaker will do the country a favour if he goes above party line and does likewise.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Whodunit?Aarushi Talwar Murder Case – Part 3 : There is darkness at the end of the tunnel while possibly there is a new clear deal

"When you come to the edge of all the light you have, and you must take a step into the darkness of the unknown, believe that one of two things will happen to you--either there will be something solid for you to stand on or you will be taught how to fly." -Patrick Overton

This is further to Part 2 analysis of the case.

Three events have happened today.

1.The third accomplice, one domestic help & a friend of Krishna, Vijay Mandal arrested .
2 .CBI held a live press conference on national television on the case.
3. Simultaneous with the CBI briefing, bail plea of Dr. Rajesh Talwar was being heard at Ghaziabad court. Dr. Rajesh Talwar subsequently was released on bail.

According to the CBI briefing, their deductions so far have been solely based on forensic evidences , lie-detection tests, psychoanalytical tests, brain-mapping tests & narco-analysis as there were no eye-witnesses to the crime. CBI made the following points.

· The tests mentioned above (in that order) are at different levels . This implies that only if someone fails both lie-detection & psychoanalytical tests, he will be taken to brain-mapping. If he fails that too, he will be subjected to narco analysis, the final stage where the subject is made to go into trance. Dr. Talwar, it appears , passed both lie detection & psychoanalytical tests and hence he was not subjected to further tests.

· CBI has found no evidence against Dr. Rajesh Talwar in the case thus giving him a clean chit.

· Hemraj’s mobile phone was with Krishna at 6 a.m following the murder while Rajkumar had taken Arushi’s mobile phone and destroyed it.

· A few days before the murder, Krishna was severely scolded by Dr. Rajesh Talwar for screwing up one of his dental equipments and Krishna felt humiliated & wanted to take revenge.

· Krishna, Rajkumar (Durrani’s help) & Vijay Mandal were having liquor at Hemraj’s room well past midnight, when the trio decided to enter Arushi’s unlocked room and knocked her unconscious with a blunt object when she resisted their sexual advances. Following this , they went up to Hemraj’s room and killed him when he dared to expose them. Then they came down and finished off Arushi by slitting her throat. The sequence has been corroborated by samples of Hemraj’s blood being found on Arushi’s pillow and by the confession made by Krishna in the narco tests & there after.

CBI briefing still leaves lots of questions unanswered.

1. Where are the murder weapons (both the blunt object & the sharp weapon) & where is Arushi’s mobile phone ? If Krishna has confessed , Rajkumar & Vijay have sung during narco tests , then WTH the weapons & phones (whether in whole or in broken parts ) have not been located ???

2. If Krishna wanted to take revenge for the insult from Dr. Talwar, wouldn’t he have taken it on Dr. Talwar himself, instead of making such a planned (at midnight & with two other accomplices ) assault on his daughter ??

3. How did the three dare to enter Arushi’s room knowing fully well that the parents are sleeping in the next room and at any moment they can be discovered? For that matter, how did Dr. Talwar allow such drinking parties at his house by his domestic helps at the dead of the night ?

4. Arushi’s murder may have been spontaneously done but Hemraj, an able bodied man of 45 would have definitely resisted and screamed or made other noises before being put to death. How come no body heard it? Do the humming of the air-conditioners drown such noises ?

5. Most importantly, the lie detector & psychoanalytical tests on Dr. Rajesh Talwar were concluded almost 21 days back. Why did the CBI keep him in custody so long if today. he is being given a clean chit based on the same tests??

6. Last but not the least, why is the CBI holding a press conference exonerating Dr. Rajesh Talwar at the same time while Dr. Rajesh Talwar’s bail pleas are being heard??

Although the CBI mentioned that the briefing was about sharing certain inputs on the case , it is now clear that the briefing was to tell the media that there aren’t evidence to charge Dr. Talwar. In the end, neither the motive is clear nor are there any material evidences against the suspected killers even after 40 days of CBI taking over the case from Noida police. The “blind case” has come to a dead end.

Dr. Rajesh Talwar’s exoneration from the case was however very logically articulated by the CBI in the briefing thus vindicating the quote in the beginning of this post that either the CBI is standing on solid ground or it has learnt to fly.
Am I being hazy here ?? Well, let me end the posting by just stating that critics of CBI say, it is better to be eaten by a stray tiger in a forest safari than be under the scanner of CBI. Even an ex-PM , Narasimha Rao, learnt it through his harrowing experiences over a decade.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Speak only what listeners want to hear( with apologies to Al Gore)

Finance Minister: Inflation will be down in 3 weeeks ..blah.. blah... blah..

Planning Commission member: Price will fall shortly..blah..blah..blah...

UPA : Government will last full 5 years...blah..blah..blah..

Leftists : Opposition to nuclear deal is for national interest..blah..blah..blah...

The most hated politician of this decade : Arjun Singh , HRD Minister goes into an overdrive to finish the IITs.

Recent reports suggest that HRD ministry now wants to have quotas for teachers in IIT , right up to the professor grade. This is after establishing the quotas for girl students and students from OBC category over and above the SC & ST. Presently the Standing council of IITs have, thankfully, rejected the ministry’s proposal but one does not know how long they will be able to hold on.

I would have thought after reading the report that the HRD minister, Arjun Singh, has now gone completely senile. How could otherwise one explain for quotas among faculty? A good educational institute is known in the international academic circle by the quality of its faculty & publications and there should not be any compromise or discrimination in selecting the most meritorious.

Reservation of any form is a compromise , finally. If you are compromising the faculty of IIT, then surely this order from the HRD minister is the last nail on the coffin of IIT.

But coming back to Arjun Singh, I think this old politician is not senile but a manipulative politician still trying to play his tricks . I am suddenly reminded of his murky, corrupt background thirteen years ago when he was exposed in the Churhat lottery case and was rightly sacked by the-then Prime Minister, Narasimha Rao. Arjun Singh fought back hard enough to bring Narasimha Rao and his own government down. Besides being manipulative, he is wily as a fox and as vengeful as a snake behind his social-do-gooder exterior . One wonders as to why the present leadership of Congress still tolerates his nonsense.

Charan Singh used to be the most hated politician of the eighties. I think Arjun Singh will now stand up to this award.

If the Congress does not rein in this cancerous minister, then it will not be the leftists who will bring down the UPA government but certain Arjun Singh will be doing an encore after thirteen years and bring the central government crashing down.

The Telegraph, Kolkata - CROOKED PRICK of the year

Having been a reader of the Kolkata telegraph since their launch in 1982, I have been a witness to multiple metamorphosis’ that the newspaper has gone through over the years. From being a upstart competitor to a serious, high-brow paper like Statesman in the eighties , it waded through milestones of circulation numbers in the nineties to become the number one English daily in Kolkata supported by billboards screaming the “Unputdownable” punch line . It offered a good sports & a book review page with separate news pages for local, national & international. The edit page had quality guest columnists debating over myriad issues over national importance. The editorials themselves were a shade mediocre , offering moderate depth but enough width to interest teenage readers to the middle-aged.

Somewhere in this decade , in their battle to stay ahead in the circulation race; they lost the edge in the ethics of journalism. The paper became sensational with their headlines often resembling the tabloids. News items , apparently authentic, seemed to be concocted in the desk . The quality of reporters & reporting was deteriorating constantly .

But it continued in their saga unchallenged in a state where mediocrity is often the norm, till some blogger from Goa sent a concocted press note to the telegraph detailing the arrest of a Nazi war criminal from Goa.
Read the story here & the press-note at the bottom of the story

The Telegraph did not verify the story. On the contrary they added their own concocted masala , put in a graphic of trail & printed the story on FRONT PAGE on 30th June (can you beat it?). Read it here. The paper thought that it was doing a smart job by not printing the press-note verbatim and hence modified it with suitable quote from official sources and all these in Monday, front page.

Surely, the editor must take the blame for such a blasphemy. The present editor , Rudrangshu Mukherjee, is reputed to be an intellectual teacher-historian of repute with his penchant for authentic research. But a cursory scan of the headlines & front page of the newspaper for last 6 months will inform you the contrary. The expose made by the bloggers have proved that there is no research, no verification of facts and the “sources” quoted are merely concoctions of the prejudices of the reporters and the editor. The headlines are sensational , school-boyishly rebellious and lack any authenticity.

Curiously, after the prank was open, The Telegraph came out with another follow-up, full of lies and no apologies for a wrong story. Very aptly, the same bloggers have decided to award The Telegraph as the “Cocky, ribbed, crooked PRICK” award after their expose. Read details of Telegraph’s gaffe out here & the justifications of the award .

The owners of Telegraph had , a few years back, commissioned Mckinsey to do a review of the paper’s financial health. It brought in some highly-paid , professional slave-drivers ( read managers) from Unilevers to head the marketing departments. All those efforts have culminated in producing the garbage that the Telegraph is today. It can’t be even used as a toilet paper.

Like the state government, like the state’s largest circulated English daily! Arrogance, stupidity, mediocrity & lies all mixed into one!

Its high time that the editor of The Telegraph be held responsible for fooling the readers day in & day out . Rudrangshu needs to be booted out and the editorial needs to be handed over to some responsible journalist , who can bring back the old glory of the daily.