Tuesday, 21 February 2017

U.P. elections and Mahabharat
The U.P. elections appear to me somewhat like the Mahabharat War.
In the Mahabharat War there appeared to be only two contestants, the Pandavas and the Kauravas, but there really was a third, Lord Krishna, who was fighting without fighting.
So also, in the U.P. elections there are three contestants, the Akhilesh-Congress alliance, the BJP and the BSP..
I have predicted that victory will go to Akhilesh, who is a Yadav, and therefore a descendant of Lord Krishna, with Arjun ( the Congress ) by his side.
Has not the Gita said that victory wlii go where : :
" Yatra Yogeshwarah Krishno, Yatra Partho dhanurdharah " ?
( see the last shloka of the Gita ).
As for the Kauravas, the Bheeshmas, the Dronacharyas, the Karnas, the Kripacharyas, the Ashwatthamas etc, along with the crafty plotters, like Shakuni Mama and Jayadrath, they will all bite the dust.
Jai Shri Krishna
Aqaayad waham hai, mazahab khyaal-e-khaam
Faith is but superstition, religion an inferior idea
Since the dawn of time, human imagination has been imprisoned by these falsehoods
By the Urdu poet Sahir Ludhianvi

Aqaayad waham hai mazahab khayal e khaam hai
by Sahir Ludhianvi

aqaayad vaham hai
mazahab khayaal-e-khaam
hai saaqi
Azal se zahan-e-insaan
bast-e-auham hai saaqi
Haqiqat-aashanai asl mein
gum-kardah-rahi hai
urus-e-agahi paravardah-
e-abaham hai saqi
Mubarak ho zaifi ko khirad
ki falsafadaani
Javaani beniyaz-e-ibrat-e-
anjam hai saaqi
Abhi tak raaste ki pech-o-
kham se dil dhadakata hai
mera zauq-e-talab shayad
abhi tak khaam hai saaqi
Wahaan bheja gaya hun
chaak karne pard-e-shab
jahaan har subah ki daaman
pe aks-e-shaam hai saaqi
Mere saaghar mein mai hai aur tere hathon mein barbat hai
Vatan ki sarzameen mein bhook se kohraam hai saaqi
Zamaana barsare paikar hai purhol sholon se
Tere lab par abhi tak naghma-e-Khayyam hai saaqi
Sowing the wind, and reaping the whirlwind
Pakistanis, your misguided and stupid forefathers sowed the seeds of Partition in 1947, and now you are reaping the whirlwind.
A suicide attack in a popular shrine in southern Pakistan has killed at least 72 people, police say. The bomber blew himself up among devotees in the shrine of Sufi saint Lal Shahbaz Qalandar in the town of Sehwan in Sindh province, police said
The real Islam of the Indian sub continent is Sufi Islam, and not Wahabi or Salafi Islam. The sufis taught compassion, tolerance and universal brotherhood ( including brotherhood with non Muslims ), not the bigotry of the Wahabis and Salafis.
In a country like India with such tremendous diversity, only Sufi Islam can be accepted here. Wahabism or Salafism has no place.
But once you create a theocratic state like Pakistan, Wahabism and Salafism were bound to grow and spread bigotry and terror.
The only remedy is reunification of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh under a secular govt. which does not tolerate religious bigotry and extremism, and crushes it with an iron hand
Some thoughts on the economy
Both Prof. Noam Chomsky and Prof. Richard Wolff of America are proponents of syndicalism, that is free self controlled workers cooperatives of the kind of the Mondragon Cooperative in Spain.
But the basic defect of such workers cooperatives is that they will only think of their own interest, rather than of the interest of the country as a whole, including the consumers.. Moreover, when a new capital intensive technology appears, they will be face...d with a serious dilemma. Accepting it may throw many workers, and therefore its own members, out of work. Not accepting it would mean that they may become uncompetitive, since other workers cooperatives doing the same kind of manufacture may accept it, and thus be able to reduce its cost of production by laying off some workers and thus saving labour costs. Also, it would impede the advance of technology..
The theory of workers cooperatives, in which the cooperative seeks profits for itself ( and therefore for its members ), suffers from the same defect which Adam Smith's theory of laissez faire suffers. It only replaces the individual industrialist by the cooperative. But the 'invisible hand' behind the cooperative would really mean that industries which are labour intensive gradually become more and more capital intensive ( with the advance of technology ) in search for more profits, by laying off many workers. However, in the process unemployment is generated, and therefore the market shrinks as less and less people have adequate purchasing power ( because the purchasing power of a worker laid off is drastically reduced ). How then will the goods manufactured be sold ?
A centralized system of production under a central government enables national planning, and thus a scientific and all round, coordinated progress on all fronts of the economy. Its aim is not just making profits, but raising the standard of living of the people.
The advocates of workers cooperatives are opponents of a centralized economy as they fear that a government running such an economy would become dictatorial and undemocratic. But that need not necessarily be so. If the government comes into the hands of genuinely patriotic, self sacrificing and modern minded people it would lead to rapid all round economic progress and giving a high standard of living to the citizens of such a country

Monday, 20 February 2017

My email to the Prime Minister
The Hon’ble Prime Minister of India
Shri. Narendra Modi...
New Delhi.

Dear Sir
Democratic Youth Federation of India , an All India youth organisation, requested me to send this appeal to you.
I am writing this letter in the context of the brutal murder of a Software professional, Ms.Rasila Raju OP, in the premises of Infosys company in Pune on 29th January. It is really worrying that atrocities against women are increasing even in the work places which were thought to be safe. The Hon’ble Supreme Court issued guidelines in Vishaka and others Vs State of Rajasthan (AIR 1997 SC 3011) about the safety of women at work place, but these do not seem to have been followed.
I appeal to your govt. to order an investigation by the CBI into this henious crime so that the perpetrators of the crime are given harsh punishment, and to ensure that such incidents are not repeated.
It is the duty of the Government to ensure that no woman in the country ends her life like Ms.Rasila Raju.
With Regards
Yours Faithfully
Justice Markendeya Katju
Former Judge Supreme Court of India
Copy to:
1.Shri. Rajnath Singh
Hon’ble Home Minister of India
2. The Home Secretrary
Govt.of India
3.The Hon’ble Chief Minister of Maharashtra.
See More

All religions are superstitions
All religions are superstitions, the truth lies in science, which is not something final, but is constantly developing. There is no God, soul ( and therefore no transmigration of the soul ), angels, fairies, witches or any other supernatural entity. The only reality is matter ( or rather matter-energy, as Einstein demonstrated ) but matter is in motion, in accordance with certain laws, which can be discovered by scientific research.
Religion and science are poles apart. Religion says there is a thing called God, which is permanent and all powerful. The religious books e.g. the Vedas, the Quran, the Bible, etc are final, and cannot be changed. Science believes that nothing is permanent or final, but is changing according to certain laws, which can be discovered by scientific research. It is true that some scientists believed in God, but that is because for a long period scientific and unscientific ideas will co-exist as the scientific and unscientific outlooks struggle with each other.
But with every advance of science religion recedes. For example, at one time people in their ignorance believed that small pox is due to the wrath of a goddess ( mata ), but now we know it is due to a virus, which can be checked by vaccination. At one time people believed that drought is due to the wrath of the god Indra, who had to be propitiated, but now we know that rain is caused by build up of high pressure and low pressure areas, and drought is due to the non build up of these areas.
As for the question who created matter ( and the Universe ) the answer is : nobody created it. Matter came from matter, in other words, it always existed, but is in motion. If we presume everything must have a Creator, then logically that Creator, too, must have a Creator, i.e a Super Creator, and that Suoer Creator, too must have a Creator, i.e. a Super Super Creator, and so on. We are thus caught in the fallacy of the infinite regress.

Sunday, 19 February 2017

There is no construction without destruction
To those who suggest this or that reform in the legislature, judiciary or executive of India, my simple answer is this : any radical and sorely needed reform will meet such fierce resistance from the entrenched vested interests in India, who want no major change, that it will certainly fizzle out.
For instance, everyone knows of the inordinate delay in disposing of court cases, which often linger on for decades, but no radical step can be taken to remedy the situation, as the vested interests will stoutly resist it. Everyone knows that parliamentary democracy in India has largely degenerated into caste and communal vote bank politics, but no serious effort is made to change this.
I am reminded of the situation in France before the French Revolution of 1789. The most sorely needed reform then was in the taxation system then prevailing in France. Under it, the richest classes, the nobility and the church, which owned almost all the land in France, had to pay no tax, while the bulk of the burden of taxes fell on the peasantry, the poorest section of society. This was grossly inequitable, but every attempt to change this system and levy tax on the nobility and church was so fiercely resisted by these classes that it ended in fiasco.
With the French Govt. under heavy debt and without money to pay it, and the financial situation desparate as the govt. expenditure far exceeded the govt. revenue, Minister after Minister of King Louis 16th proposed a tax on the nobility and church to generate the funds needed---Turgot, Necker, Calonne---but each was hounded out of office by a cabal of powerful vested interests including the King's brothers ( the Dukes of Artois and Provence ), Queen Marie Antoinette, etc. The Assembly of Notables, consisting of nobles and bishops, was called by the King in 1787 to try to persuade these classes to accept taxation on them, but instead of consenting to it, they thought that by procrastinating they could wave away the move. Hence they passed on the buck by suggesting an Estates General, which was held in May 1789, and was the beginning of the French Revolution.
It was only when their manors began to be burnt by the peasants, and the Bastille was stormed on 14th July, 1789 with the beheading of its Governor and others, that 'wisdom' dawned on the nobles, who realizing that now their own necks were in danger, in a sudden act of 'generosity' gave up their feudal rights on the night of 4th August 1789. (That, of course, did not save their necks. )
So it is no use to talk of reforms in India any longer. What is now needed is a Revolution. There can be a building which can be repaired or renovated. There can be another building which is so dilapidated that no amount of repair or renovation will do, and it needs demolition and fresh construction. India today is like the second kind of building. Its system of governance has become so rotten that no amount of tinkering with it will do.
And there can be no construction without destruction

Thursday, 16 February 2017

The Indian Century
After China's betrayal of the underdeveloped countries, India, with its huge pool of engineers, technicians, scientists, etc, immense natural resources and large territory has potentially assumed their leadership. We are therefore going to play the most crucial role among all nations in world history in the 21st century, which will be characterized as the century in which the underdeveloped countries struggle to become developed, thus ensuring a high standard of living and decent lives to all their peoples.
But the whole developed world ( including China ) seems to have ganged up against India . This is because with our cheap and huge labour force and industrial base we can undersell the developed countries.
As I have pointed out earlier, cost of labour is a big chunk of the total cost of production, and if the cost of labour is less, the cost of production is less, and then one can sell at a cheaper price. Who then will buy the expensive products of the developed countries ?
Countries with cheap labour thus have a distinct advantage over countries with costlier labour, provided they have an industrial base. India is the most developed of the underdeveloped countries, and is huge. We have also an industrial base today, which we did not have in 1947. We are therefore in a perfect position to become a developed nation, and thus ensure to our people good lives.
But for that we face a long, arduous struggle ahead, as the developed countries will do their level best to ensure that we do not succeed in obtaining our national objective. And for that we must unite and stop fighting among ourselves on the basis of caste, religion, region, language etc
This century is going to be the Indian century
A Govt. which will be run from jail
Before going to jail, Sasikala readmitted her nephew Dinakaran, who had been expelled by Jayalalitha, into the ADMK and appointed him Dy. General Secretary of the party ( she herself will, of course, remain the General Secretary ), and now it seems her stooge Palaniswami will be your next Chief Minister
So Tamizhans, congratulations ! You will now have the distinction of having a. government for the next 4 years being run behind the scenes by a convict found guilty by the Court of gross corruption. Palaniswami will faithfully carry out her orders from jail.
But dont worry, Tamizhans. The precedent for that has already been set by another state which has stolen a march over you

Monday, 13 February 2017

Some thoughts on Economics for India
While thinking about what to say in my speech in the forthcoming function at NIT, Tiruchirapalli on 17th February some thoughts occurred to me, which I am noting down :
The English economist Adam Smith in his classic book ' The Wealth of Nations ' published in 1776 advocated open markets, and relatively barrier free domestic and international trade. In other words, Smith was against not only constraints on domestic industry, but also against protectionist policies against international competition.
In contrast, the German economist Friedrich List in his book 'The National System of Political Economy ' published in 1841 said that international free trade would result in subjection of the less advanced nations by the predominant manufacturing and commercial nations. He advocated protection to domestic industries by less industrialized nations ( by customs duties )..
It may be mentioned that England was the first country in the world to industrialize. German industrialization began later, and at that time German industries were small compared to British industries, so they needed state protection to face the competition of British industries, otherwise German industries could not survive. This protection, List argued, should be in the form of customs duties on British goods.
A giant can fight another giant. But a child cannot fight a giant. So a child must be protected and nurtured until it, too, becomes a giant.
List pointed out that when Britain was doing its own industrialization, it was done under heavy protection to its industries. But when it had broadly completed its industrialization, Britishers were preaching free trade to other nations.
List wrote " Had the English left everything to itself—'Laissez faire, laissez aller', as the popular economical school ( i.e. Adam Smith's schl ) recommends—the German merchants of the Steelyard would be still carrying on their trade in London, the Belgians would be still manufacturing cloth for the English, and England would have still continued to be the sheep-farm of the Hansards. Indeed, it is more than probable that without her highly protectionist commercial policy England would never have attained to such a large measure of municipal and individual freedom as she now possesses, for such freedom is the daughter of industry and wealth ".
The German authorities followed List's recommendations, with the result that Germany could rapidly industrialize. Japan, too, did the same, and so did USA
Since India is less industrialized as compared to developed countries, in my opinion India too must follow List's theory. Our industries need protection if they are to grow. For instance, Chinese goods are capturing our markets, and in my opinion heavy customs duties should be imposed on them, or their entry into India should be prohibited altogether.
This does not mean I am in favour of restoration of the licence-permit raj which had strangled our economy for decades. I am against most of internal restraints, and am only referring to free entry of foreign goods into India, to give protection to our own industries.
At the same time, special help by the state should be given to our new industries and new entrepreneurs so that they can tide over the difficulties which all new entrants face. In particular, special help and concessions should be given to small and middle level industries, as these have few reserves and financial back up. Youth starting as entrepreneurs should be given special help, e.g. in the form of loans at low interest, free technical advice, tax holidays for long periods, etc.
Most of the nations which are today industrialized did their industialization under governments which were friendly to their domestic industry and helped promote it. India too should do the same.