Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Death of Phillip Hughes

On 25/11/2014 Phillip Joel Hughes was felled by a bouncer bowled by Sean Abbott. He was playing for South Australia against New South Wales in Sheffield Shield at Sydney Cricket Ground and was 63 not out. It was 2.23 p.m. local time. The ball hit him behind the ear where there was no protection from helmet. He was taken to St. Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney. He did not recover and died on 27/11/2014. He would have been 26 on 30/11/2014.
Many players have been hit by bouncers. Some were out of action for some time. In 1962 Nari Contractor was hit by a bouncer bowled by Charles Griffith. He was conscious for six days and retired from Test cricket. In 1975 Ewen Chatfield was hit by a bouncer bowled by Peter Lever. That time batsmen did not wear helmets.
Geoffrey Boycott was the first to wear helmet. People laughed at the time but soon others followed. Chest guards and other protective gear came in.
Rahul Dravid and Stuart Broad had to miss Tests due to injuries caused by bouncers even though they were wearing helmets.
Phillip Hughes was wearing helmet. The company that produced the helmet said Phillip Hughes was wearing old helmet. If he had worn new helmet he would have been saved.
Phillip Hughes’ funeral is on 3/12/2014. Brisbane Test was to begin on 4/12/2014. It has been postponed. Dates are not decided. Australian cricketers are devastated. David Warner, Shane Watson, Brad Haddin and Nathan Lyon were present when Phillip Hughes fell down. Michael Clarke was at the hospital.
Phillip Hughes’ death shows the frailty and fragility of human existence. A healthy young man falls while playing cricket and in two days he is dead.
Some will call for ban on bouncers. Phillip Hughes had faced bouncers before. This was a freak accident. For some time bowlers will be hesitant to bowl bouncers.
Numbers 63, 64 and 408 are associated with Phillip Hughes. He was 63 not out in his last Innings. 408 was his Test cap number and 64 was his ODI jersey number.

Amitabh Bachchan as Meyer Wolfsheim

Why did Baz Luhrmann approach Amitabh Bachchan to play Meyer Wolfsheim in The Great Gatsby? Why did Amitabh Bachchan accept the role? Meyer Wolfsheim is an American. Baz Luhrmann could have found some American to play that role. The problem seems to be Meyer Wolfsheim is a Jew who makes money by illegal means. He is a bootlegger and match-fixer. Jews don’t want negative portrayal of their characters. It is a small role. It is a blink and miss appearance. May be Amitabh Bachchan was elated when Baz Luhrmann came to meet him and praised him.
Jews control much of Hollywood. Stories are changed so that Jews are not shown to be bad people. In the novel Indecent Proposal the man who makes the offer of one million dollars for one night to a married woman is a Jew and the woman who accepts the offer is an Arab. In the film they are not shown as Jew and Arab.
Jews did not want the exhibition of Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ. The film was based on the Gospels. John Patrick Foley, then Archbishop and President of the Pontifical Commission for Social Communications, saw the film and cleared it. He later became Cardinal.
Marlon Brando once said in Hollywood prophets of all religions are ridiculed except Moses. Later he issued an apology.
Not many American actors want to do roles that offend Jews. That may be the reason Baz Luhrmann asked Amitabh Bachchan to play Meyer Wolfsheim. Some call it Amitabh Bachchan’s Hollywood debut. Guest appearance is more appropriate. Decades back Conrad Rooks had offered the lead role in the 1972 film Siddhartha to Amitabh Bachchan which he refused and the role went to Shashi Kapoor.

Supreme Court on CBI Director

On 20/11/2014 Supreme Court ordered CBI Director Ranjit Sinha not to interfere in the investigation and trial of 2G spectrum cases. The bench consisted of CJI H. L. Dattu and Justices M. B. Lokur and A. K. Sikri.
The order said “We direct Ranjit Sinha not to interfere in the 2G spectrum investigation and trial. The next seniormost officer of the investigation team would take over from Sinha and continue proceedings.” Supreme Court said if we give a detailed order, there will be damage to the reputation of this great institution. The order came after Special Public Prosecutor Anand Grover submitted his report and told the court that Sinha had attempted to file an affidavit that would derail the entire prosecution in the 2G case.
In the morning CBI Joint Director Ashok Tiwari and some CBI officers had come to court. Supreme Court told them to go back and do some work.
Supreme Court can give elaborate reasons for its order. It need not worry about faith in CBI or its Director.
Not many have faith in CBI. CBI’s reputation has been tarnished through various deeds of commission and omission. Cases handed over to CBI have mostly failed in punishing the guilty. There have been cover-ups and acquittals.
Jain hawala case flopped. Aarushi-Hemraj murders case saw twists with change of Directors. Three servants were framed to protect the Talwars. They, the servants, got bail as there was no chargesheet against them. Later under another Director Talwars were charged, found guilty and jailed.
Politicians in power at Centre have used CBI to suit them. CBI has changed its stance in cases against Mayawati, Mulayam Singh Yadav and Laloo Prasad Yadav according to the wishes of its masters. CBI was used even against Intelligence Bureau in Ishrat Jahan case.
Ranjit Sinha should have been sacked when he said betting should be made legal and when a woman cannot avoid rape she should lie down and enjoy it. It is pathetic that he got away with it.
Government can sack Ranjit Sinha. His last day of service is 2/12/2014. Sacking him will give the message that government will not tolerate corruption and sabotaging of cases. Allowing him to continue because 12 days were left means in future also corrupt officials will plead they should be allowed to retire.
Many times state police do a good job. Cases are handed over to CBI and they flop. In Fake Stamp Papers case names of politicians came out during investigation. They were not interrogated. The amount came down from 37,000 crore rupees to 3,000 crore rupees. In Madhu Koda case the amount came down from 4,000 crore rupees to a few crore rupees. Murders turn into accidents or suicides.
Ranjit Sinha did not know there was visitors’ diary. There were names and car numbers of those who came to meet CBI Director. Supreme Court withdrew its previous order which had directed revealing the name of whistleblower who had handed over the diary to Prashant Bhushan. This is a relief to whistleblower who remains anonymous and others who may wish to become whistleblowers. Vikas Singh who represented Ranjit Sinha had alleged DIG Santosh Rastogi was the whistleblower. CBI lawyer K. K. Venugopal countered him. When judges questioned Vikas Singh he said it appeared an insider was giving information to Prashant Bhushan.
There have been varied reactions to Supreme Court order. Some have said Ranjit Sinha should resign.
Soli Sorabji: As a man of honour, which we assume him to be, he should step down.
R. K. Raghavan: It is an indictment of an individual and not an organization.
TSR Subramaniam: Many times you can do irreparable damage. We do not know the extent. One single meeting can change the course of investigation. It is a matter very high people are involved. If he does not go, government should show him the door.
Subramanian Swamy: He should step down. It will be a disgrace if he continues. Supreme Court has set up a healthy precedent for future. Future directors should be careful.
Bishwajeet Bhattacharya: Government has all the powers. CBI Director should gracefully step down. Be you ever so high, law is above you. Full marks to Supreme Court.
Sanjay Hegde: When you are head of investigating agency you don’t meet the accused.
KTS Tulsi: One person met him 71 times. This is gross misbehavour.
A man of honour does not engage in dishonourable acts. Ranjit Sinha does not want to resign. He said “No personal aspersions have been made against me.” It is for the government to decide on Ranjit Sinha’s continuance.

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