Showing posts from February 23, 2020

Why are we all so so angry?

By Vijaya Pushkarna

When India celebrated her 70th Independence Day, television channels showed a hauntingly different yet familiar, soothing version of "Jana Gana Mana". The National Anthem was sung by a choir from the North East, and the person behind it was Vandana Kohli.

Well known in the circuit of documentary makers and music, Vandana  never stops surprising anyone who meets her even after two or three weeks. Her conversation is always about something else. For she is on to something new, creative, and  no less challenging or interesting  than what you last saw her do. Not that she has stopped doing that!

Yet there are many who will associate Vandana  with anger. At a time when the  real PDA --Public Display of Anger -- be it on the roads, at home, in schools, why...even in the highest institution of our democracy , is constantly on the rise , Vandana has made it her own subject thanks to her  award winning documentary on anger . Every frame in it gets more and more r…

For the MSMEs, now is the time to act

By Vijaya Pushkarna

"If everyone coughed or sneezed into their elbow or a tissue (not into the air or on their hands), the germs would not travel very far. And if everyone washed hands with soap before preparing food or eating, that route of transmission would end.
Thus, an immediately effective response would be for each government to start a crash national program to disseminate these safe  behaviors." That is what |Warwick J McKibbin, Nonresident Senior Fellow-Economic Studies and Co-Director, Climate and Energy Economics Project, and David Levine, Professor, Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, have said about the immediate way that the global community can slowdown the spread of Corona virus, even if we wait for a vaccine.

But there is apparently no similar  immediate, simple, way of dealing with the fallout of the virus on economies all over the world. According to the World Health Organisation, it could get  pandemic. Markets everywhere hav…

FIR or no FIR against makers of hate speeches?

By Vijaya Pushkarna

"The Gujarat Model"
As Delhi burns, these  three words that Prime Minister Narendra Modi would often use  in the course of his speeches in 2014, are coming back into currency.  The allusion, however, is to the 2002  riots ---the nightmare that refuses to fade away, for the victims and survivors of the communal clashes. 
In fact " the Gujarat model" sarcastically being talked about in the national capital, is not even about the communal clashes that have led to 28 deaths-- and counting. It is about the Centre turning a blind eye to the violence --just the way Mr Modi as chief minister and Mr Amit Shah as home minister of Gujarat did back then.And it is about the police under Shah's charge failing in  their duty.
Can people be faulted for saying that the police should have acted against BJP "leaders" indulging in hate speeches as they tried to polarise the Delhi assembly polls? There is every reason to believe that if  the police had pro…

Missing in Action, stories that make a case for Indo-Pak talks

By Vijaya Pushkarna

Maj Ashok K Suri was the Quartermaster of 5 Assam Regiment days before war broke out in December 1971. He had just picked up his rank, was all set to marry, and also play hockey, when he took charge of a small convoy of vehicles containing arms and ammunitions and rations. As the story went, he came under heavy shelling, was wounded, rushed to a hospital where he breathed his last. A Capt B S Negi cremated his body.
That's  what the young Major’s father,R S Suri, was informed on Jan 21, 1972, about five weeks after Pakistan surrendered. It was a story he did not buy from the word go. He had by then received four contradictory information about Ashok’s death: that he was wounded in action on 5 Dec, that he expired on 15 Dec, that the Commanding Officer of 5 Assam came to know of Ashok’s death only on 7 Dec.
The father who ran a yoga centre put on his boots to find out the truth. Rather find his son. This rare, determined father gave up everything to remain singular…