Our MPs forget they are representatives of people and not their lords and masters. They demand privileges they do not deserve. Their demand for red beacons atop their cars in Delhi was rejected by Sonia Gandhi. Now comes the news that demand for special treatment of MPs made through House Committee of Lok Sabha is accepted by Air India and Airports Authority of India. A committee member said MPs are not even provided minimum basic facilities.
On 7/5/2012 Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee announced rollback of excise on gold. Nobody spoke against rollback. Jewellers had opposed it. Sriprakash Jaiswal, a minister, had talked against it. Being coal minister he had nothing to do with gold. Delegations of jewellers had met Sonia Gandhi. There were no discussions on TV channels against rollback.
There are people who say what consenting adults do in private should not be covered by law. This is mainly in reference to Section 377 of IPC which is under litigation in Supreme Court.
By that logic prostitution, sale and purchase of narcotics and psychotropic substances and illicit liquor, corruption, polygamy, transmission of pornographic material and many others matters that take place between consulting adults will be out of the scope of law. Drug traffickers can claim they have right to life and liberty to sell heroin, marijuana and such things to consenting adults in private and they have right to equality. The state will have no right to legislate on marriage, divorce, alimony and child custody. Also concubinage, live-in relationship and palimony will be out of the legal purview.
Dow is a sponsor of London Olympics. Some people want India to boycott London Olympics if Dow continues to be the sponsor because Dow bought Union Carbide which was responsible for Bhopal gas tragedy in 1984. IOC has said Dow is not responsible for Bhopal gas tragedy and Dow sponsorship for Olympics will continue till 2020.
India has not boycotted Olympics any time. In 1980 USA and many countries boycotted Moscow Olympics. In 1984 USSR and some countries boycotted Los Angeles Olympics. In 1976, 22 African countries boycotted Montreal Olympics.
In 1953 or thereabout the government of India nationalized Imperial Bank and changed its name to State Bank of India.
In 1969 the government of India nationalized 14 banks. In later years more banks were nationalized.
Some years back there was a proposal to nationalize those banks as they were making losses. The employees protested saying there were not responsible for losses.
The banks had lent to many industrialists who had not repaid the loan and that was the reason for losses. Many industrialists in India would have gone bankrupt years ago if banks had insisted on payments.
The Government of India wants 5% reservation for SCs/STs in private sector. Reservation in government jobs itself is a bad idea. Once the reservation begins there will be demand for increase in percentage and extension to other communities like OBCs. It will divide people. There will be further demands to be declared as OBCs or STs. We know the damage done by Gujjar agitation.
Reservations began for a period of 10 years. They got periodic extensions and more people came under reserved category. SCs/STs changed a lot over the years but reservations continue. Then came OBC reservations.
If government thinks that companies benefitting from government incentives have to reserve seats it should stop incentives.
On 25/6/2010 the government of India increased prices of petrol by Rs.3.50, diesel by Rs.2/- kerosene by Rs.3/- per litre and LPG by Rs.35/-per cylinder. Petrol and diesel prices were decontrolled.
The increase has come at a time when food price inflation is about 18%.
The increase was avoidable. For the week ended 18/6/2010 foreign exchange reserves increased by $3 billion. If the government had not increased foreign exchange reserves the dollar value would have gone down making oil import cost less and there would have been no need for price increase.
MPs want increase in salaries. A committee of MPs has recommended that salaries of MPs should be on par with that of Secretaries of Government of India.
For secretaries the salary is Rs.80,000/- p.m. It is not known what allowances and perks they get apart from salary.
For MPs the salary is Rs.16,000/- p.m. They get a constituency allowance of Rs.20,000/- p.m., daily allowance of Rs.1,000/- when Parliament is in session, free accommodation, phones, water, power, healthcare, railway travel and 34 free single air journey tickets.
NSCN-IM general secretary Thiungaleng Muivah is in Delhi for talks with the Government of India. There is demand for Nagalim or Greater Nagaland and sovereignty for Greater Nagaland. It is unlikely that both demands will be granted.
As per one report Indiaâ€™s President Pratibha Patil has refused to reject mercy petitions of murderers sentenced to death penalty. She follows Home Ministryâ€™s advice only when it is to commute death penalty to life imprisonment.