Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Aam Aadmi Party

Arvind Kejriwal and others founded Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on 26/11/2012. The party does not have a hierarchy. It has a committee at national level. Arvind Kejriwal is national convener. Prashant Bhushan, Kumar Vishwas, Shazia Ilmi, Manish Sisodia, Yogendra Yadav are some of the prominent members of AAP.
Arvind Kejriwal said he will not be minister or prime minister. If AAP gets 272 seats in 2014 or whenever Lok Sabha elections take place he may change his mind.
Arvind Kejriwal is called Ambulance chaser, headlines hunter, and publicity seeker by his opponents. They say his tactics are hit-and-run, shoot-and-scoot. AAP has taken on Robert Vadra, Salman Khurshid, Nitin Gadkari, Mukesh Ambani, Anil Ambani and many others. AAP also had a press conference on the plight of some soldiers.
AAP does not have a high command. I suppose for selection of candidates they will choose a system similar to American primaries. To have a symbol at national level it is necessary to be recognized as a national party. For that they need a certain percent of seats or votes.
Arvind Kejriwal has lost friends and made enemies along the way. That happens when you fight against corruption and do not spare anyone. Kiran Bedi wanted to fight Congress corruption with the help of BJP. Arvind Kejriwal wanted to fight corruption in every party. She separated from him. Anna Hazare turned against him after he targeted Narendra Modi.
People will support AAP on its fight against corruption. On other issues like economic reforms, liberalisation, reservations, opinion will be divided. SP is opposed to reservations in promotions to SCs/STs. If AAP supports reservations SCs/STs/OBCs/EBCs it has nothing to gain. If it opposes, it will have lot of support. AAP should not worry about its enemies targeting it for not having representatives of some caste or community of say it is a one issue party.
AAP wants initiative and referendum in India. That is possible. Three states have right to recall at local bodies. Election Commission is open to right to reject.
AAP should strive for presidential system of government; single date for Lok Sabha, Legislative Assembly, municipality, panchayat and district council elections; abolition of Legislative Councils, Planning Commission, National Advisory Council, Animal Welfare Board, subsidies, freebies, public interest litigation; parole and furlough; and surplus budgets by governments and local bodies. It should fix 30 days as the time limit for deciding on mercy petitions of people sentenced to death. If no decision is taken to grant pardon or commute the sentence, the petition should be deemed as rejected. The policy of promoting students up to Std VIII irrespective of their academic fitness should be scrapped and those who fail annual exams should be detained. AAP should oppose buying foodgrains and allowing them to rot.
AAP should not go for alliance with any party. It should contest every seat in every election. If no majority it should not for coalition but sit in opposition and wait for its turn in next election.

BCCI President and selectors

In January 2012 Mahendra Singh Dhoni said at the end of 2013 he would decide which format of the game he would retain as the captain. The question arose if he decides what to retain what are the selectors for? Sachin Tendulkar talked about he deciding when to quit. The impression was that selectors choose players and when a player talks about his choice as to when he retires why the selectors do not drop him?
Mohinder Amarnath on 12/12/2012 was on TV channels and talked of overruling of selectors by BCCI President. When India were 0-3 in Tests in Australia the selectors unanimously wanted to drop Dhoni as captain. Mohinder Amarnath wanted Virender Sehwag as Test captain and Virat Kohli was ODI captain. He said it was a unanimous decision. The decision was overruled by BCCI President N. Srinivasan. He was told that according to BCCI constitution the BCCI President has to approve the team. He was shown the clause. According to a newspaper report Mohinder Amarnath, Raja Venkat and Narendra Hirwani wanted to remove Dhoni and K. Srikanth and Surendra Bhave were not on their side. Mohinder Amarnath was not given a copy of the constitution when he was made selector. He felt the constitution dated back to 1932 and the clause needed to be deleted.
Now we know selectors are not that all powerful. BCCI President can overrule selectors and have his choice of captain and players. Sunil Gavaskar said that is the protocol in India and Australia. It seems Dhoni and Tendulkar have the backing of BCCI President and they can decide for themselves. Many feel N. Srinivasan favours Dhoni because he is the captain of Chennai Super Kings owned by him. There is conflict of interest.
Mohinder Amarnath lasted just one year as selector. He was supposed to become chairman of selectors. That did not happen. Selectors who do the bidding of BCCI President get extension. Those who oppose are shown the door.

Hoax calls

There are various types of hoax calls. There are radio jockeys who impersonate others. One radio jockey impersonated Hugo Chavez and called Fidel Castro. After some talk the jockey called Castro a murderer. Castro was furious and turned abusive. Sarah Palin was a victim of hoax call. She took it humorously.
Death of Jacintha Saldanha led to debates on hoax calls also known as prank calls. Some anchors said everybody who heard the call laughed in the beginning and turned serious after the death. They are wrong. Many were furious that the privacy of a pregnant woman was violated. The jockeys apologised but were happy at the publicity they got. A few days after the death they appeared on TV and shed tears.
It is said that 2Day FM had got into trouble before. Perhaps there was not enough outrage or legal action to stop them from doing illegal acts. Some in radio broadcast claim when they make prank calls they let the person know that it is a prank call and with their consent they broadcast the recording. It seems every radio station does not do that.
There are hoax calls that cause inconvenience to people. Some call to say there is a bomb in a plane or in a building. Flight is delayed or building is vacated. There has to be suitable punishment for such hoax calls. If the flight was to carry 327 people then the punishment should be 327 years rigorous imprisonment. If 1,600 people had to vacate the building then the punishment should be 1,600 years rigorous imprisonment.

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