Sunday, November 25, 2012

Egypt- Follow up to my blog written over a year back

My first blog was posted on Feb 10, 2011 and tittled  " Egypt-The real crisis is after democracy " . I thought it was a good time to follow up on that blog and give you an update on the current situation in the new democratic country of Egypt.

The message I tried to convey in Feb 2011 was that there are certain regions in the world that are not built or at least ready at this time for democracy. I was very clear that Egypt will be a mess under the new regime of "The Muslim Brotherhood".

Article from yesterdays Times Of India -

Egypt erupts as prez turns ‘pharaoh’

Morsi Assumes Sweeping Powers That Even Mubarak Didn’t Enjoy, Triggers Violence

Cairo: Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi assured his supporters that the country was on a path of “freedom and democracy” even as thousands of people staged rival rallies across the polarized nation to both support and oppose his move to assume sweeping powers.
Morsi’s detractors dubbed him the ‘new pharaoh’, a day after he issued a declaration granting himself what many said were more powers than even the ousted dictator Hosni Mubarak.
Thousands of his supporters and opponents on Friday took to streets to stage rival rallies across Egypt, leading to sporadic violence and burning down of offices belonging to the ruling Muslim
Amid much concern over the move, Morsi told his supporters that Egypt was on the path to “freedom and democracy,” and stability was the need of the hour.
“Political stability, social stability and economic stabil
ity are what I want and that is what I am working for,” he told an Islamist rally outside the presidential palace.
Morsi’s new powers are supposed to be temporary, to last for the transition period, and the decree will expire when a new constitution is approved by the middle of February. However his opponents see the move as endangering the gains of the popular uprising which ousted Mubarak’s dictatorial regime.
“I have always been, and still am, and will always be, God willing, with the pulse of the people, what the people want, with clear legitimacy,” Morsi said.

The president’s declaration also ordered retrials of officials involved in the killing of protesters during the 2011 mass uprising against the Mubarak regime.
Protesters marching from various city points converged in Cairo’s iconic Tahrir Square chanting slogans such as “Down with the Supreme Guide”, “Wake up Mursi, it’s
your last day,” and the popular “The people demand the fall of the regime”.
The protesters held banners denouncing the Muslim Brotherhood and its intervention in the state policy, as well
as banners rejecting Thursday’s constitutional declaration. During the protests, offices of the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), the Muslim Brotherhood’s political arm, were set ablaze in Ismailiya and Port Said, state television said.
It was also reported that the party’s office in Alexandria was also stormed. Eyewitnesses said 15 were injured in the clashes as both sides
hurled stones at each other, and at least five cars were smashed. The protesters arrived in Tahrir about an hour after Islamist supporters of Morsi came out in the tens to demonstrate against the Constitution Party’s anti-Mursi protest march. The two groups engaged in verbal sparring matches, shouting slogans at each other.
Political forces including the Wafd Party, Tagammu Party, Constitution Party, Democratic Egyptian Party, Free Egyptians Party and Popular Trend Party, and the April 6 Youth Movement, the Revolutionary Youth Union, the Free Egyptian Movement, the No to Military Trials group and the Bring them for Trial campaign announced participa
tion in the protest.
Islamist forces including the Muslim Brotherhood, Jama’a al-Islamiya, and Salafi Dawah as well the Freedom and Justice Party, the Noor Party, Asala and Wasat were in support of the new constitutional declaration. PTI


President Morsi exempts all his decisions from legal challenge until a new parliament is elected
Gives himself sweeping powers that allow him to sack the unpopular general prosecutor and open the door for a retrial of Mubarak and his aides
Empowers himself to enact any measure he deems necessary to deal with a ‘threat’ to Egypt’s ‘revolution’
The powers are supposed to be temporary — until a new
constitution is adopted and new parliamentary polls take place
Morsi’s aides say the steps will help in speeding up a protracted transition process that has been hindered
by legal obstacles
But his critics say the decree puts Morsi in the same category as Mubarak, who argued his autocratic powers were necessary to shepherd Egypt to a new democratic future

ANGER ON THE STREETS: Protesters hurl stones at supporters of President Morsi in Alexandria on Friday


Monday, June 20, 2011

Lokpal, Jokepal or Forget about it Pal...

This is a follow up to my earlier blog where I had asked all my friends to wake up, think on their own, make their own decisions and build an independent thought process.
Why this hue and cry over the lokpal bill by the Govt? Why is the govt resisting this? And why is it so strongly opposing the inclusion of the PM under this bill?
My view on these questions – The government is in utter shock that the Indian society, which for so many years was sleeping and did not want to get involved with the governance of this country, is beginning to ask some very serious questions and are also willing to go to the streets to voice their concerns and most importantly- demand action.  The govt doesn’t want a lokpal bill that will be drafted by prominent citizens because they will not leave any loop holes in the bill (hopefully) and most importantly the congress is opposing the inclusion of the PM because they fear that their future prime ministerial candidate- which will only be a member on the Gandhi family will get into some major trouble.  I don’t see any other reason for them to oppose the inclusion of the PM. PM is not above the law; he is not super human or Maryada Purushottama, the Perfect Man. Like all of us the Indian PM should be governed by the law of the land.
Corruption has ruined India. Especially during the last 60 years of self governance. At least when the British were ruling us we had a reason to point figures at someone else but what about now? It’s our own elected representatives who are killing this country. The list of scams in India is never ending   . Wikipedia has this exhaustive list but it only covers national scams and not regional or state scams. There are no hard numbers on the size of black money, since black money is generated by both legal and illegal activities. However, according to Arun Kumar, a professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, author of Black Money in India, the black economy has assumed huge proportions and it keeps growing. His estimates suggest it is worth a whopping US$500 billion - almost half the size of the official economy - but some say it is even larger and could be as high as 70% of the official economy, if parallel activities undertaken outside the country are considered.
Why is the govt opposing the Civil Society groups (Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev included)- I am no fan of Baba Ramdev but his demands are absolutely legitimate. All he is asking for is for a very strict law that will bring back black money into the country and make the money the nation’s property. What is wrong with this demand? The govt every second day finds new reasons to attack Anna hazare- he is a front man for BJP & RSS, he is holding parliament at ransom, his team is corrupt and most recently I  heard minister Kapil Sibal and Digvijay singh of the congress ask “Who appointed Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev to represent the people and demand this law? This is probably the most stupid question of all times. If that be the case then who appointed Bhagat Singh and Netaji Bose to fight against the British, who appointed the congress lead by Gandhi to fight against the British. I don’t remembering reading anything that said there was a major election in India and the people voted for Gandhi to represent the people. The answer to Mr. Sibal and Digvijay Singh is “Nationalism”. Anyone and everyone who loves his/her country has the right to voice his opinion and demand that his/her country be governed with highest integrity.  The shame of India’s democracy is that it’s being run only by the vote bank and by people who have mastered the art of manipulating this vote bank. 
Unfortunately corruption has become a way of life for Indians. We have made it part of our daily life, we are so used to it that we are actually shocked if some government work gets done without giving a bribe though chances of this event are rare and far in between.
Let’s stop and think what we have done to this country in the last 65 years or I can say think what we haven’t done in the last 65 years. Majority of the railway system was built by the British, same is the case with large water dams, ports, cities, colleges, and this can be a never ending list. It is time that we seriously question our leaders who have been governing this country- what have they done right? It’s an open secret that Indian politicians have 1000s of cr rs and that has still not satisfied their appetite, they continue to accumulate more. 2G Scam, Common Wealth scam, Mumbai housing scam, it just never ends. Congress thinks it’s being very smart laying the entire blame for the biggest scam in India -the 2G scam- on its southern partner the DMK.  But do they firmly believe that the people are stupid and will not see through this? It is very clear that “ sab ke hat kale hai” meaning everyone is involved. There is no way that people like Gandhi, Chidambaram, Kamal Nath, Kapil Sibal, Sharad Pawar etc etc did not get a piece of the massive loot. It’s time we as citizens take a stand and stop this. I certainly believe that if Anna and Baba Ramdev have a fool proof law or idea against corruption it should be adopted and the govt should stop playing politics all the time. Most importantly let’s not forget what is currently happening because we Indians have a habit of getting distracted very easily. The govt may influence the media to change the headline from corruption to Shah Rukh Khan’s new movie, but we need to be focussed and remember the atrocities committed by this govt and when the time comes we need to vote them out.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Modi- Why we love to hate him !!

Let the man who has never done anything wrong throw the first stone.  Can anyone of us claim to be perfect?! Can anyone of us claim that we have never harmed anyone?!  But if someone does one mistake, then we all make it a point to pile on him and in some cases pile on him for life.
Narendra Modi – The man who has single-handedly managed to create the most efficient and prosperous state in Asia, 'Gujarat'.
Today, Gujarat has a growth rate of over 12%: that’s 50% higher than our nation’s growth rate of 8%. The state contributes 27% to India’s tax collection, 42% of India’s pharmaceutical turnover and 22 % of India’s exports. In 2010, Forbes' list of world's fastest growing cities included Ahmadabad at number 3 after Chengdu and Chongqing from China.
 On 1 June 2007, Narendra Modi became the longest serving Chief Minister of Gujarat. Subsequently, on 23 December 2007, the BJP won the state elections in Gujarat and Narendra Modi became the chief minister for the third time in a row. In the recent civic elections in 2010, even Muslims and Christians voted whole-heartedly for Mr. Modi and his development initiatives, resulting in the BJP getting 80% victories.
So why is the media still Anti-Modi?
What this country needs is a politician who delivers on his promises, who encourages growth, creates jobs. We don’t need people who just give speeches that Modi was involved in the Gujarat riots and he does not have the moral right to lead. And who are these people who talk about moral rights? They are the same bunch of jokers who were silent spectators when this country was being divided; they were silently watching when 1000s of Sikhs were being killed in Delhi in 1984. These politicians have ruled this country for almost 60 years and created nothing but corruption and internal divide in the country.  
Gujarat riots of 2002 were absolutely nothing as compared to Gujarat’s past riots of 1969 and 1985 . They were still nothing as compared to Gujarat’s riots of 1980, 1982, 1990, and 1992. Much worse riots took place in New Delhi in 1984 under the Congress Party’s rule. Ranganath Mishra Commission gave a report that 3874 people were killed in the 1984 riots. Sikh sources often say that it was 2733 in Delhi and 4733 in all. I am in no way justifying the 2002 riots, but only trying to make a point that riots are not new to India. But for the biased media of this country 1000 lives lost in Gujarat riots are more valuable than all the other lives lost in all the other riots in the past 60 years.
I agree that Modi may have mismanaged the situation in 2002 but hasn’t he done enough for the people of Gujarat for us to let go of that one incident? Every 5 years we forgive our politicians for all the corruption/mismanagement/non-development and re-elect them and here is a man who is the most efficient, diligent and non corrupt politician ever and we don’t want to let go of his past and just love to hate him.
On 11th Jan 2011- The new Darul Uloom vice-chancellor, Maulana Ghulam Mohammed Vastanvi, said "all communities" are prospering in Narendra Modi's Gujarat and there was "no discrimination against the minorities in the state as far as development was concerned."

This is arguably the most significant endorsement of Modi. Darul Uloom, based in Deoband in Uttar Pradesh, is a leading Islamic seminary in
India and the founder of the Deobandi thought, which has adherents well beyond the country's borders, especially in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Before the Muslim community could react to this statement, the Media reacted saying how can a senior member of the Muslim community say this !
According to me, one of the most corrupt parts of our society is the Media. They talk favorably about the Gandhi family, Sharad Pawar, Karunanidhi, YSR Reddy, Kamal Nath, Farooq Abdullah, Murli Deora, etc, etc. But don’t we know the kind of wealth that these people have amassed in the last 50 years, don’t we know that no criminal or don worth his name can function without the blessing of his political bosses? Yet the media doesn’t talk about their inefficiencies, because that’s their nature-to protect the so called secularists.
Please think: What our country needs now and for years to come is good governance. I believe that one of our basic rights as a human being is the right to reach our true potential and we need a government that will help us achieve this. Today’s Gujarat, thanks to its leadership gives its people this opportunity. Good leaders and good governments are rare in India and we should encourage it and not look for every occasion to kill it.  
Modi may have done all the right things for his state, the people of Gujarat may have democratically elected him 3 times in a row, the people of Gujarat may love him but the media doesn’t care- they don’t like him and that’s it. They clearly believe that the people are foolish and they being the superior creatures of our society have the divine right to educate us. For the media if a politician can bash Modi by his words not by his deeds then he/she becomes their favorite guest. This is also true the other way around, the more a media house does Modi bashing on their network the more favors they receive from the politicians. Media has convinced us that by hating Modi we are contributing to the development of our society. Media has learnt well from our history - tell the same lie a 1000 times and people will start believing that that’s the truth.
We are all supposed to be educated people but can’t we see through this, do we still need a blog like this to awaken us? All that our other politicians have ever done is make false promises and as far as I have learnt its deeds that matter and not words. Modi talks less to the media but clearly delivers great governance.  
We should prevent the media from completely controlling our thoughts. We should evaluate for ourselves the pros and cons of every situation and learn to take our own decisions. Let’s not be lazy and go with the general consensus, let’s try to be the master of our own thoughts.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Egypt-The real crisis is after democracy.

Have we stopped even for a minute to think about the real effect of democracy in the Middle East or as usual are we getting carried away by the media? On want basis do we think that Egypt will be a better place with democracy? Democracy has not been successful and will not be successful in managing fundamentalism or terrorism. Democracy basically means free for all. In the name of democracy you will have chaos and complete lack of governance. I am a firm believer that every country in the Middle East needs a very strong single party/family/king/dictator governing them. It is easier for the rest of the world to deal with one strong head of a state than talk to 10 groups all of whom will claim to represent the people.

Why this crazy rush to have democracy in Egypt? And what’s the alternative to President Mubarak -the Muslim brotherhood? To quote Wikipedia, "the Society of the Muslim Brothers (often simply الإخوان Al-Ikhwān, The Brotherhood or MB) is an Islamist transnational movement and the largest political opposition organization in many Arab states. The group is the world's oldest and largest Islamic political group, and the "world's most influential Islamist movement."The Brotherhood has as its slogan "Islam is the solution"".

Is this what we want? Another country in the Middle East which will be run by fundamentalists? You already have countries which are on the edge-  Iran, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Yemen, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and now we want to gift them Egypt. It is my view that the Muslim fundamentalists have played this round very well. They have used the biggest weapon that the U.S had against them- FREEDOM. U.S always used this and continues to use the phrase freedom for all as a weapon to interfere and invade other countries and now the fundamentalists are using the same slogan of FREEDOM to get to power. Imagine what will happen if the world’s largest oil producer Saudi Arabia losses its king who is a friend of the western world? Saudi will be controlled my people who hate all other religions except theirs, they believe that Israel has no right to exist, believe that women have no rights at all and not to forget their support for Pakistan when it fights with India.

I actually want to applaud this wonderful strategy that the fundamentalists have adopted.  Along with Al-Jazeera’s support these fundamentalists have created a situation, a make believe situation, where we feel that what they are asking for is correct but we are failing to understand the real motive which is behind all this and that is to create a region which will be governed by Muslim fundamentalists and which will control almost 50% of global oil. It is only a matter of time before Iran –a NUCLEAR IRAN becomes the head of the region. Is this what we want? Think about it – what after Egypt?

Let’s grow up and start thinking on our own and looking at the bigger picture. Let’s not become pawns in the hands of these new generation, smart thinking so called fighters for democracy. They have their own goals to achieve and we all know that they will most certainly not make the world a better place.