Month: March 2010

Rajya Sabha and reservation for women

On 9/3/2010 Rajya Sabha passed women’s reservation bill 186-1. Before that seven members were suspended. They refused to leave the house and marshals lifted and carried them out. BSP members walked out. TMC members abstained. BSP and TMC are headed by women. Congress, BJP and Left Front had issued whips in favour of the bill.
On 26/2/2010 when budget was presented members of all opposition parties had walked out in protest against the rise in petrol and diesel prices. If the intention of passing the bill was to break opposition unity the government succeeded.
Interestingly in the bill Rajya Sabha does not have reservation for women.
During TV discussions some people who favoured women’s reservation mentioned that Pakistan has 27% reservation for women and Afghanistan 20%. Do these people want India to end up like Pakistan and Afghanistan which have many terrorists? Possibly the reservations are one reason for terrorism. Men who could have become legislators were deprived of their chance and took to guns. In that case India with 33% reservation can become worse than Pakistan.
Some women said men do not share power. Politics is not charity. You have to fight for your space and get it. Women in politics do not share power. Once Rita Bahuguna said something nasty about Mayawati.
No constitutional amendment has the right to alter the basic structure of constitution. Women pay less Income Tax than men. Seats are reserved for women in city buses. Some Supreme Court lawyer should file a petition against such injustice to men.
If women’s reservation becomes a reality many will have to change their constituencies at least once. Lal Krishna Advani will not be able to contest from Gandhinagar. Rahul Gandhi will not be able to contest from Amethi. Some women who are presently legislators and did not have women opposing them will have women opponents.

Link to e-book King – a novel:

India out of Hockey World Cup 2010

On 28/2/2010 when India defeated Pakistan 4-1 in a league match of Hockey World Cup 2010 there was hope that India will win the cup. After the match tournament director suspended Shivendra for three matches for injury to a Pakistani player. Shivendra had not received any red, yellow or green card from the referee. After appeal the suspension was reduced to two matches.
England had defeated Australia. Indians were hoping for a victory against Australia. Australia defeated India 5-2.
India faced Spain in the next match. Spain defeated India 5-2. Out of six penalty corners India converted one into goal.
After this India’s chances of proceeding to semi-final were slim. India had to win the next two matches. Depending on who defeated whom and goal difference India had a chance of proceeding to semi-final.
India faced England. England scored a goal in the first half and two in the second half. India scored two goals after that but failed to score more. India missed scoring a goal when 40 seconds were left. India lost 3-2.
Against Pakistan India had four penalty corners and converted three into goals. It did not have such success in other matches.
It is not clear why Adrian D’Souza did not play in matches against Pakistan and Spain. It seems it was because he was a spokesman when players were on strike.
Indian hockey was in the news for wrong reasons for most of January and February 2010. Men players were on strike. Women players protested wearing black armbands. There was controversy regarding captaincy of Hockey World Cup 2010. There was controversy about a promotional match.
It is no point saying our players played well but finishing was poor. Matches are won by goals scored and our players have to do better in scoring goals. All players apart from goalkeepers should have more practice in penalty corners and penalty strokes.

Iceland referendum on debts

On 6/3/2010 Iceland had a referendum on whether to use taxpayer funds to pay off Iceland’s substantial debts to UK and Holland. Icesave internet bank had collapsed and UK had paid $3.5 billion and Holland $1.8 billion as compensation to 3,40,000 nationals who had lost their savings in Icesave.
Iceland’s population is almost the same as the number of depositors in Icesave. Most of the people said no. Many said taxpayers should not pay for the folly of a private bank. Some were against interest payment on debt. Iceland had nationalised private banks that had gone bankrupt in October 2008.
Many people had deposited in Iceland’s banks because of high interest rates they offered. With high interest comes high risk.
It is not fair to make taxpayers pay when banks go bankrupt. Many times banks and companies that go bankrupt are taken over by governments or loan is given. When the country is large the amount per taxpayer is not huge. Iceland being a small country the amount per tax payer was huge.
Many times companies and banks that are bailed out pay huge bonuses to executives who led them to loss. The justification that bonuses are necessary to retain those executives is not valid and without bail outs the companies and banks would have gone bankrupt and the executives would have lost their jobs.
Iceland may find difficult to get loans from IMF and other agencies. Whether not getting entry into European Union will make any difference is another question. The problems in Greece, Spain and Portugal have raised questions about euro.

Link to e-book King – a novel: