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November 16-30, 2013
INDIA A DUMPING GROUND ?
STATE BANK OF INDIA LIQUIDITY CRUNCH !! WHAT ? After almost a month, State Bank of India (SBI) recently resumed discounting letters of credit (LCs) issued by other banks. This has offered relief to the business community, as LC discounting is one of the most popular ways of financing local and foreign trade. More than a month ago, SBI had directed its offices to suspend the practice of discounting LCs other than those issued by SBI and its associate banks, for local trade. There was speculation that the bank was facing a liquidity crunch. However SBI dismissed these theories. “It was a temporary measure, as short-term rates had increased sharply. Our discounting rates are low and it did not make sense to continue LC discounting at such rates for local trades. At the same time, we did not want to raise the rates. Therefore, we decided to suspend it for a temporary period. Now that short-term rates have started easing, we have resumed it,” said a senior SBI executive. Although this seems to be a plausible excuse, there are many unanswered questions that cast doubt on the health and credibility of the bank. India has privatized banks and nationalized banks. If privatized banks fail, then they have to shut down. However if nationalized banks run at a loss, then they are funded by the Government using taxpayer money to make up for the shortfall which means that the
M. Thomas, USA bank is impossible or too big to fail. State Bank of India is the largest nationalized bank in India with the most number of branches and anything that affects the operations of the bank can be said to be an indicator that mirrors the economic health of the country. This is particularly important since that the Bank runs on the support or infusion of funds by the Government of India. When the bank runs at a loss, like the losses due to bad loans to Kingfisher Airlines and other such parties; the Central Government funds it and makes up for the loss. If the bank stops discounting LCs there has to be no other reason other than a liquidity crunch faced by the bank. LC discounting is the basis on which local and international trade works. An LC is opened by the buyer's bank and the seller's bank discounts it. In this transaction a percentage as commission is debited by the seller's bank as processing charge, fees and interest cost before paying money to the seller. This helps buyers to buy goods on credit and helps the seller to get immediate payment. This financing that is facilitated by banks helps both the buyer and the seller. When the credit is tight and the economy is slow, LC discounting becomes the lifeblood of trade and industry. LCs help buyers to take
NAVI MUMBAI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT IS UNCERTAIN ?? NAVI MUMBAI : PAPs are demanding allocation of 35% developed land against offer of 22.5% made by the state government and the corporation. Although the Bombay High Court has allowed it to cut mangroves spread over 108 hectares, the state-run City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) has yet to cross a major hurdle of acquisition of 291 hectares of private land and the agreement with project-affected persons (PAPs) over compensation. This is crucial to start the work on the Navi Mumbai inter-national airport. The CIDCO and the Maharashtra government have stepped up efforts to arrive at a consensus over compensation for PAPs, before a meeting called by the prime minister on November 13 to expedite the work. PAPs, who have dropped their earlier demand of Rs 20 crore per acre, are deman-ding allocation of 35% developed land against the offer of 22.5% made by
Pages : 4
Vol. 9, Issue - 10
Criminal Neglect and Corruption at its peak !
delivery of goods without upfront payment and help sellers to receive immediate payment soon after goods are shipped and LCs are also one of the sources of income of the bank. On July 15 this year, the Reserve Bank of India had announced a few measures to tighten liquidity and stem volatility in the foreign exchange rate. Following this, short-term rates started rising. Three-month commercial paper (CP) rates had touched 12 per cent, against the minimum lending rate, or base rate, of banks, which was about 10 per cent. Bankers said with the hardening of short-term rates, many companies had opted for bank loans instead of borrowing through commercial papers (CPs) or LCs. Therefore, there was drop in demand for these financial instruments. “Probably, this convinced SBI to temporarily dis(Contd..... on page
Adv. Sivasankaran India, our Mahabharat is known as the land of rishis and munis. We boast of a civilization unparalleled in history and unseen in any other part of the globe. We have our Nalanda and Takshashila when the other continents were learning hunting and counting skills. We are also the land of Ganga, Yamuna, Kaveri and Godavari and the Himalayas. Today our country is known as the dumping ground of the discarded waste of all denominations and descriptions. We have completely forgotten the biggest human tragedy which occurred at Bhopal Union Carbide's Pesticide plant which resulted in the death of 6,000 peoples over night and the continuing agony for the many who survived. The apathy was atrocious and the world nick named the tragedy as the Hiroshima of chemical industry. We do not learn from the history and therefore are condemned to repeat the horrors. Recently there were reports about export of radioactive minerals monosite and ilmanite from the sands of Chavara in Kerala. Private parties with patronage have been indulging in not only the export of rare earths but also in the granite, marble and red sandal in (Contd..... on page 3)
REAL ESTATE SALES SHOWING A DOWNWARD TREND NAVI MUMBAI : While real estate developers say that the market is witnessing a growth in Navi Mumbai, the officials from the sub-registrar office feel otherwise. The officials say that they have been receiving very less registrations since the past three months which shows that the market is seeing a slump. “We have been getting very less registrations over the past three months and people visiting our office are mainly registering leave and licence agreements, mortgage deals etc. while the number of those registering any new property is very less,” an official from Vashi sub-registrar's office said on condition of anonymity. Asked whether Diwali will bring any change in the scenario as far as registrations are concerned, the official replied in the negative and said that the market has been slack since three months and there are little chances of it witnessing any change in the days to come.
“The real estate market is sentimental towards the rates that the developers are offering. Whether it is Diwali or not, the market will rise or fall only if there is a rise or fall in property rates. So, the developers' thinking that people will purchase property during the festival has no base since the rates are stagnant. If the developers decide to reduce the rates, only then will the people invest into realty,” the official added. Proving his argument, the official said that in July, the office had registered 930 properties while the number reduced to 819 in August and further went down to 618 in September. “Surprisingly, in September, we had registered only 389 new properties while leave and licence agreements and mortgage deals registered with us were 197 and 32, respectively. This proves that the real estate market is not reviving to the point it should as claimed by the developers,” he added.
Offers the state government and CIDCO. The state government has already clarified that land-for-land compensation formula would be implemented instead of cash-forland formula. Early October, CIDCO, which is the nodal agency for the airport project, has launched social and commercial survey of Chinchpada village which is one of the 10 affected villages. RC Gharat, chief negotiator for the PAPs, said the talks are still inconclusive. He added the PAPs await further rounds of talks with CIDCO. ''So far there has not been (Contd..... on page 2)
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November 16 - 30, 2013
The Politics of Violence – The Kerala Style One-upmanship has always been the bane of Kerala Politics. While political parties in India particularly in Kerala have been preaching democracy and Gandhian ideals in practice they all have been egging and encouraging violence overtly and covertly. The recent attack on the Hon. Chief Minister of Kerala Shri. Oommen Chandy has to be seen in this perspective. If the state could not protect its Chief Minster from the preplanned and violent attack with the police men in uniform and without uniform present in large strength, the fate of the common citizen can well be imagined. It appears that the popular Chief Minister wanted to be a victim in order to gain political mileage and to have an escape route from the number of controversies in which he is involved. Today in this Gandhian country no political leader however popular he is can enjoy the freedom of a free walk or a carefree stroll and escorts of armed guards witnessed everywhere proves this point. Indeed Mr. Oommen Chandy deserved a Z+ security cover and any failure or any excuse to provide the same is certainly a failure on the part of the administration and particularly the Home Minister. Past experiences indicate that criminals are on the prowl and anti social elements have been working overtime to create troubles and spears and
bombs are no more the monopoly of the naxalites or the terrorists. Oommen Chandy with all his Gandhian ideologies and popular cravings is not a Gandhi who dared to walk to Naukhali. He could do so because he had the courage of his convictions and a motive to secure freedom. Caution should have been exercised by the Chief Minister before venturing into a crowd and the police force should have been left to themselves to take decisions pertaining to the vital security matters in the Marxists dominated center of Northern Kerala. Security lapses have cost our country dearly and leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Indira Gandhi and even Rajiv Gandhi have fallen to the bullets of their assassins and the gun powder of the terrorists. Terrorism cannot be wished away particularly when the state policies on many issues have become counterproductive. The success of the political leadership lies in gathering intelligence and information in advance and averting a show down. Showman-ship and display of brutal state power can only result in further unrest and social indignation. However since prudence and good governance have become almost extinct in our system, it is imperative that the law should be allowed to take its course so that at least the peace loving citizens are allowed to lead a life of sanity and security.
(State Bank of India Liquidity Crunch !! ....... Contd ..... from page 1) continue LC discounting,” said a market analyst. This shoddy explanation is contradictory and goes against the laws of demand and supply. If the demand for LCs drops, the Banks must make LCs easier and cheaper to discount so that businesses prefer LC discounting instead of bank loans. However SBI did exactly the opposite which meant that the demand for LC discounting went up and the Bank could not cope up with the demand. Discounting LCs is a relatively riskfree business with a decent fee income. The fact is that the Bank did not have money to discount all the LCs that were coming to it to be discounted. Now the million dollar question is why was SBI not being able to pay money to businesses that want to discount their LCs? Did not the bank have money to handle those LCs? If the bank did not have money the question is why? Now after a month, the bank started discounting LCs again. Is it because the bank has been infused with funds by the center? The raising of interest rates itself is proof that banks do not have money to do business. Even Moody's Investors Service has downgraded State Bank
of India's (SBI) senior unsecured debt and local currency deposit ratings to 'Baa3' or lowest investment grade rating from Baa2 and changed the outlook on its financial strength rating to 'negative' from stable, as the economic slowdown puts pressure on the credit quality of India's largest lender. Moody's downgraded the unsecured debt and local currency deposit rating by a notch citing asset quality and recapitalization concerns. The rating agency has also pointed out the bank's reliance on a fiscally constrained government to maintain capital at levels desired by regulators as another reason for downgrade. If the SBI debacle has to be explained in one phrase it is “bad loans”. The best example of it can b e seen in the way the Vijay Mallya promoted Kingfisher Airlines bled SBI. Now Kingfisher is under more trouble as the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has started investigating the loans granted by State Bank of India (SBI) to the crisis-hit airline. “We are examining the borrowing in respect of one public sector bank and the investigation is in progress,” according to a CBI official. The official said that the investigations are in the early
DISCLAIMER The news published by various authors in this publication are their sole opinion and Editor is in no way accountable and responsible.
PEACE AS HARMONY First, there is an utopian conception of peace as a life of harmony from which conflict itself has been banished. In such a condition, not only is violence unknown, there is not even any disagreement. This view describes people, individually and collectively, as living in a state of self – absorption, enjoying a mystical existence. It cannot help us is think of peace in such terms peace interrupted personal tranquility does, form a plan of life for that distinguished minority of people who are able to retreat to a monastery. It may perhaps be just within the reach of persons who were born to sainthood or who have benefited from first rate psycothereputic care. Most of us cannot live in a world without conflict, physically or even mentally. It is inevitable because both people and groups have basic needs expressed in society through competing values and clashing interest. Peace as Order : There is a conception of peace as stability;
(The writer is a Post Graduate from Indian Institute of Human Rights, New Delhi.)
life made predictable and relatively safe by a minimum of political order. Peace seen in this perspective is the product of an efficient political system both at home and in the relations between states. This is how peace is conventionally analysed within the international relations discipline. The mechanism for the management by the powerful are less clearly visible then they are under the constitution of a well run state, but they nevertheless do exist for
world as a whole and they are effective. Internationally, there is a twin structure; on the one hand of balanced deterrence between major power centres, both regionally and globally; and on the other hand of an ordered hierarchy, which maintains a rudimentary form of world government whereby the affair of the smaller and weaker states are directed by the large and more powerful ones. In summary, a conception of peace merely as the product of an ordered international political system can never help to achieve a future for the world which is substantially different from the past. Research conducted within its set of assumptions, while occasionally of value in peace research, is likely on the whole to perpetuate the characteristics of world politics as we have known then in the past, rather than to usher in progressively beneficial changes, first in the climate of opinion and then in policy and in institutions.
BUTTER, CHEESE, EGGS NOT BAD FOR HEART LONDON: A cardiologist of Indian origin in the UK has spun conventional medical wisdom around by showing that fatty food like butter, cheese, eggs and yoghurt can be good for the heart. Cardiologist Aseem Malhotra published his findings on Wednesday in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) saying that the medical advice of cutting down on saturated fats to reduce the risk of heart disease may be wrong. He said that recent studies “have not supported any significant association between saturated fat intake and risk of cardiovascular disease”. Malhotra is an interventional cardiology specialist and registrar at Croydon University Hospital in London says scientific evidence shows that advice to reduce saturated fat intake “has paradoxi-cally increased our cardiovascular risks.” He says the government's obsession with levels of total cholesterol “has led to the over-medication of millions of people with statins and has diverted our attention from the more egregious risk factor of atherogenic dyslipidaemia” (an unfavourable ratio of blood fats). Saturated fat has been demo-
nized since the 1970s when a landmark study concluded that there was a correlation between incidence of coronary heart disease and total cholesterol which was then correlated with the percentage of calories provided by saturated fat, Malhotra said. “But correlation is not causation,” he said. But patients were advised to “reduce fat intake to 30% of total energy and a fall in saturated fat intake to 10%”. One of the earliest obesity experiments published in the Lancet in 1956 compared groups consuming diets of 90% fat versus 90% protein versus 90% carbohydrate and revealed that the greatest weight loss was in the fat consuming group. More recently, a study revealed that a “low fat” diet showed the greatest decrease in energy expenditure an unhealthy lipid pattern and increased insulin resistance (a precursor to diabetes) compared with a low carbohydrate and low glycaemic index diet. Malhotra pointed to the United States where percentage of calorie consumption from fat has declined from 40% to 30% in the past 30 years (although absolute fat consumption has remained the same) but obesity has rocketed. One rea-
son, he said, is that the food industry “compensated by replacing saturated fat with added sugar.” Adopting a Mediterranean diet after a heart attack is almost three times as powerful in reducing mortality as taking a statin, writes Malhotra. “Doctors need to embrace prevention as well as treatment. The greatest improvements in morbidity and mortality have been due not to personal responsibility but rather to public health… It is time to bust the myth of the role of saturated in heart disease and dietary advice that has contributed to obesity,” he said. Commenting on the study, the chair of Britain's National Obesity Forum David Haslam said, “It's extremely naive of the public and the medical profession to imagine that a calorie of bread, a calorie of meat and a calorie of alcohol are all dealt in the same way by the amazingly complex systems of the body. The assumption has been made that increased fat in the bloodstream is caused by increased saturated fat in the diet whereas modern scientific evidence is proving that refined carbohydrates and sugar in particular are actually the culprits.”
stages. Kingfisher Airlines owes nearly Rs 7,000 crore to banks and financial institutions. One-third of it is loans from SBI. How these massive loans came to be granted on a dubious asset base and who all allegedly took a cut out of it have to be investigated by the CBI immediately without any delay. It is insane to make the taxpayer shoulder the wrongdoings of the SBI management. It is hoped that this prime example of “CAPITALISM FOR THE POOR AND SOCIALISM FOR THE RICH” will be exposed soon and those guilty brought to book.
(Navi Mumbai International Airport ..... Caontd ..... from page 1 any agreement about PAPs accepting the 22.5% developed land as offered by the state government and CIDCO,'' he noted. Gharat explained that as per the government's 22.5% developed land formula, the PAPs will actually get 15.75% which is not acceptable. He demanded that the developed land should given on net basis and not on gross basis. The project cost, which was estimated at Rs 4,766 crore in 1998 to handle 40 million passengers annually, has risen substantially to about Rs 14,573 crore as on date to handle 60 million passengers annually. The rise has been as high as 305.76%. Delay in acquisition has forced the CIDCO to defer the invitation of request for qualification. Meanwhile, CIDCO has already announced to develop 'mangroves park' near the proposed airport. The high court granted its approval as CIDCO has already received clearances from the Ministry of Environment and Forests, and Wildlife Authority. Further, the CIDCO has been exempted from Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) regulations for development of the airport.
November 16 - 30, 2013
Textbook Errors : Some are genuine, some are deliberate
Text books for school and college students which are prescribed by the different boards of studies have always created controversies of one kind or the other. This is true of not just Maharashtra, but also of many other states in India. The books are written and produced by a committee of specialists, who are generally teachers with several years of experience and are post graduates or Ph Ds in their subjects. The committee is headed by a chairman who too has incontrovertible credentials. It is surprising that text books prepared and edited by such committees contain not just simple mistakes of spelling, grammar or printer's devil, but factual errors and dubious opinions. It was rather amusing to note that a history text book described Suez Canal as a 'sewage' area. The word 'Suez' was probably mistaken for 'sewage' owing to its similarity in pronunciation. Burma was referred to as 'Brahmadesh. Perhaps, the word was coined after Bangladesh. These errors in the history text book for the X standard for the current year were noticed after one round of corrections and erratum had been issued. Strangely enough, when previous mistakes were corrected, new ones cropped up. There was another serious error. Africans were referred to as “Negros” or “Negroes” which are considered demeaning. “Many paragraphs make no sense, while there is repetition of text in some chapters. It is getting very difficult to teach. It is clear that the text is a poor translation from Marathi”, said a
teacher. (Times of India 4-7-13). As an example of a paragraph that made no sense, the 'Times of India' quoted the following:- “The area of this continent (Africa), is 3,02,77,135 sq. km. It is divided into two parts in the field of history, i.e, Religion and Ethnic. The continent is divided into two parts due to the Sahara desert. Both the parts of this desert are not in contact, due to the two remote parts in the fields of Culture, Religion and political background.” In fact, no one can make any sense out of such sentences. One can only pity the teacher whose duty it is to teach lessons of this nature. It was also found that there was a serious error in the map of India which was printed in the geography text book for class X. It led to a heated debate in the Maharashtra legislative assembly at the end of which the minister for education Rajendra Darda assured the members that such an incident would not recur. Another newspaper report revealed that the urdu text books for class X and X11 were riddled with errors. There were 800 errors, mostly grammatical and a few factual. River Musi in Hyderabad was mentioned as River Musa. The Ajanta caves was written as Ajantar caves. No one would have come across a more strange and ludicrous statement than the one found in a Tamil Nadu class V1 text book. The book titled “New Healthway: Health, Hygiene, Physiology, Safety, sex education, Games and Exercises” said that non-vegetarians “easily cheat, tell lies, they forget promises, they are dishonest and tell bad words, steal, fight and turn to violence and commit sex crimes”. (Mumbai Mirror 17-11-2012). How such absurd ideas got into print is not known. The book also offered an advice on marriage, which too was questionable. It suggested that women should find a husband
between the ages of 18 and 25. “To get married without a bad name is the dream of every young girl” it said. In another case, a text book that was prescribed in Tamil Nadu described the 'Nadar' community as a lower caste. At a time when caste based comments are considered a criminal offence, it was rather unfortunate that a school book meant for students contained such objectionable information. The text book, a social studies book for class 1X also mentioned that the Nadars were migrants who worked as toddy tappers under Nair landlords. It also said that Nadar women, like Shamar caste women, only gained the right to cover their torso after a prolonged struggle. There was a similar case, if I remember right, in the early 1950's. A lesson in a school text book mentioned that Namboodiri women in Kerala did not cover the upper part of their body. Some of the errors which we find in text books are genuine, in the sense that they occur due to oversight. Some others are not so innocuous, they can be even deliberate. They may be the expressions of a deep rooted malaise. A former state board official is reported to have commented, “Many board of studies members (BOS) who are appointed from the rural areas are usually chosen for their connections with ministers and senior educational officials”. The very purpose of education is to groom children into responsible citizens who can rise above narrow considerations who can respect the other man's views, opinions and culture. It goes without saying that school education plays a major role in moulding one's character and making him fit for a future career. Text books are the very basis of such education and it is essential that they are free of errors and more importantly, of prejudices.
(INDIA A DUMPING GROUND large quantities. It appears that our country is bent upon earning foreign exchange irrespective of what we export and how we export, legally, illegally or clandestinely. We need oil and gold at any cost to fuel our sagging economy. Heard of the famous mind space in Malad, Mumbai. The sprawling commercial complex was built on a dumping ground and the subsequent detection of toxic emission from beneath has now become a non issue and part of the development history. It is estimated that we are burning 25% of our plastic waste at low temperatures resulting in the emission of a toxic gas called dioxin. The facilities for high temperature incineration are few and is not popular even with the municipalities or the environmentalists. Large quantities of imported waste are reported to be piled up in many of our ports in utter violation of various protocols and treaties to which India is a signatory. This happens in a country where in many people particularly college students died after consuming the Folidol contaminated wheat supplied by USA
..... Contd ..... from page 1) under PL480 in the year 1956. We continue to consume insecticides and pesticides in smaller quantities even today through our vegetables, milk, medicines and even water. Even the air we breathe is contaminated with carcinogens, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, volatile organic compounds and suspended particulate matters. While we are still grapling with the problems of chemical, plastic and e-waste, we are in the process of generating the most dreaded nuclear waste. While we are eager to secure more and more nuclear reactors, no one has yet answered as to what we are going to do with the nuclear waste and how do we propose to dispose it off safely. The world has no answer to this problem and so is in slow motion. Japan has decommissioned its last nuclear reactor and the USA has not added a single nuclear reactor to its fleet of power generation facilities in the past 30 years but our Mahabharat is in the race to augment its nuclear power capability. It appears that we shall have nothing left uncontaminated in the years to come. If we have not learned any lessons from Chernobyl and Fukushima and our own
Bhopal, we are not going to learn it from Kaiga, Koodankulam or Jaitapur. A recent study revealed that even the Thane creek is not free from radio-active plutonium and this would not have come from any outer space but from the nearby BARC reactors. Tarapur has its own tales to tell. Yes, everyone is in need of energy but not indeed nuclear energy. It appears that we are acting under pressure and many powerful radias and lobbies are at work to dump the obsolete technology here to make money and find employment. While I think of a green India the thought of a barren India overtakes me. GM cotton and seeds have already made its way to this country and the fate of the original varieties shall remain a dream for many. The issue of liability – product or process liability: We have travelled more than a hundred years from the era of industrial revolution and has developed enough technology for the recycling of waste except that of the nuclear variety. Infact waste is the other name of wealth but what to say about a nation in which wealth is neglected and even food grain is allowed to rot.
NAVI MUMBAI - NEWS NMMC LACKS PROPER PEST CONTROL NAVI MUMBAI: The residents of Juhugaon are peeved by NMMC's negligence as the sudden showers during the October heat has resulted in the formation of a mosquito breeding site near the Gaodevi temple on the arterial Vashi- Koparkhairane road. This area has been allegedly neglected by the sanitary department. The trustee of Gaodevi temple, Raman Bhoir said, "Despite repeated complaints to the Vashi ward office and civic health officials, no remedial measures are being taken. Also, garbageaccumulation along with the sudden October rains has aggravated the mess. Our trust members shall now undertake a cleanliness drive across the cityto set an example." A staff at Badal Gas agency, requesting anonymity said, "The mosquito breeding site is near our agency office, and it has become inconvenient to park vehicles for transporting gas cylinders.” NMMC's chief medical officer of health, Dr R Nikam said, "If the swampy water body does not recede, and if there is any nuisance of mosquito breeding site, then insecticide will be sprayed on the water under Dr Vidya Verma's directions from NMMC's Urban Health post in Juhugaon. The sanitary inspector at the Vashi ward office will also ensure that the stretch of swampy arterial road near the Gaodevi temple is cleaned.” Harish Shetty, the shopkeeper near Navratna hotel in sector-17, lamented, " The heap of garbage overflowing from the public dust bins placed near hotel Navratna is not been picked up regularly and the stray dog while rummaging through the trash further aggravates the mess. Also, it can been seen that the ghantagadi garbage vehicles are no longer visiting the public places. Instead, private poclains are been used for lifting garbage which are overflowing from bins kept at public places and transported by open dumpers by filling it upto the brim due to which the garbage spills on the road during transit."
Law Department to study Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation's garbage tender rate NAVI MUMBAI: The state government's law department is scrutinising the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation's (NMMC) tender rate for disposing garbage. The civic body has stuck to the rate of Rs 1,503.75 per tonne as approved by the civic general body against the government recommendation of Rs 1,233 per tonne. The civic body sources said, "Our rates are more as we are following the equal pay for equal work policy, while the state government has worked out the rates as per minimum wages.'' The average daily generation of garbage is around 600 metric tonne (MT) that increases by some 60 MT daily during the festive season. "We are hopeful of a decision after Diwali,'' said a civic official. The state government intervened when Congress corporator Dashrath Bhagat objected to the NMMC rate of garbage disposal and alluded to corrupt practices. City mayor Sagar Naik said, "Our rate has been vetted by all India institute of local bodies, a semi-government body that calculated the cost after factoring in diesel cost and other expenses. There is no corruption, as alleged. We are confident of our rates being accepted.''The institute, a semi-government body calculated the cost after factoring in increase in diesel cost and other expenses. Meanwhile, the civic body has 110 vehicles at its disposal provided by local contractors for each of the wards and clearing garbage is often extended beyond evening hours. India is a country in which the population considered the government a liability and the government considers the public as a liability, the causalities of this cross thinking is the future generation. Nobody wants to accept the liability since no one is ready to accept and discharge his or her responsibility. When we talk of liability it is necessary to understand it in its correct perspective. Vicarious liability has become a new mode of passing on the buck. The liabilities for great tragedies such as Bhopal MIC, the Folios Shipment under PL480, Chernobyl Nuclear disaster and the Fukushima disaster are yet to be fixed. While our own public liability act, the first of its kind in compassionate legislation, the government in its larger wisdom chose to keep out the railways and the atomic energy establishments outside its purview – a clear case of
collective wisdom going astray. While our apex court has clearly defined the concept of strict liability and absolute liability, there is a concerted attempt to escape from the liability even by those who are directly responsible. Whether the mishap or the accident is the result of a manufacturing defect in the equipment or on account of a process or product deficiency or failure is difficult to establish. It requires an in depth analysis such as Hazan and Hazop to unravel the cause of the mishap. Liability can be fixed only if willful default or negligence is established and this is a time consuming process which requires experienced expertise which are rare and scarce. Thus the long rope of time becomes an escape route and a dilution mechanism and the culprits shall remain as elusive as ever.
November 16 - 30, 2013
Random Thoughts V. N. Gopalakrishnan The festival of Karva Chauth is glorified and solemnized by the Hindus and Sikhs. It is widely celebrated in Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Bihar, Gujarat, and Delhi. Many mythological legends have given it a religious fervour. Karva means a clay pot and Chauth corresponds to four. This year, the festival was celebrated on October 22. The festival and the fast are synonymous with Karva Chauth and are considered auspicious for married women. They celebrate this day by observing a fast and praying for the longevity, well-being and prosperity of their husbands. According to Hindu scriptures, fasting helps create an attachment with the God by establishing a harmonious relationship between the body and the soul. The Karva Chauth fast begins before sunrise and ends only after offering prayers and worshipping the moon at night. The fast has all the trappings of festivity and the women dress up in their best finery, with henna-decked hands, bindis, colorful bangles and jewelry. A few days before Karva Chauth, married women buy new Karvas, the spherical clay pots and paint them on the outside with beautiful designs. Inside the pot, they put bangles and ribbons, homemade candy and sweets, make-up
KARVA CHAUTH : WIFE FASTS HUMAN LIVER ANATOMY FOR HUSBAND'S WELL-BEING ! items and small clothes. The women then visit each other on the day of Karva Chauth or immediately afterwards, and exchange these Karvas. During the time of Karva Chauth, parents send gifts to married daughters and their children. The earliest reference of a Karva Chauth is found in Mahabharata. As per the epic, Arjun, one of the Pandavas, went to the Nilgiri Hills to offer his prayers and worship the Gods. Draupadi, wife of the Pandavas, was accompanying him. On the way, Draupadi was struck with fear believing that she was alone in the forest with no one to protect her. Then she invoked Lord Krishna and sought his help. Lord Krishna advised Draupadi to undertake a fast on Kartik Krishna Chaturthi as a remedy similar to the one undertaken by Goddess Parvati at the behest of Lord Shiva. The story of Satyavan and Savitri is similar. When Yamaraja, the Lord of Death came to procure Satyavan's soul, Savitri pleaded to grant him life. When he refused, she started vigorous fasting. Finally, Yamraja relented and granted her, Sathyavan's life. According to another legend, a woman named Karva was deeply devoted to her husband. One day while bathing, he was caught by a
crocodile. Karva came running and bound the crocodile with a cotton yarn. She then went to Yamaraja and requested him to send the crocodile to hell. When Yamaraja refused, she threatened to curse him. Afraid of the power of a devoted wife, Yamaraja readily accepted her request and sent the crocodile to hell and blessed Karva's husband. In ancient time, girls used to get married at a very early age, and had to live with their in-laws in far away villages. After marriage, if she faces any problem with her in-laws or husband, she would have no one to talk to or seek support from. Her own parents and relatives would be quite far and unreachable. Thus the custom started that when the bride would reach her in-laws, she would befriend with another woman who would be her friend or sister for life. Thus, Karva Chauth was started as a festival to celebrate this relationship between the brides and their friends. Apart from the religious fervour, Karva Chauth is very much a social and seasonal festival. It is celebrated mostly among the North Indian community settled either in India and other parts of the world. The fast is unique because nowhere in the world does a wife goes without food or water just to pray for the longevity and well-being of her husband.
YOUR BODY, NOT JUST FACE, HELPS PEOPLE RECOGNISE YOU Scientists have found that when facial features are difficult to recognise, people readily use information about someone's body to identify them, without being aware that they are doing so. "Psychologists and computer scientists have concentrated almost exclusively on the role of the face in person recognition," said lead researcher, Allyson Rice of the University of Texas at Dallas. "But our results show that the body can also provide important and useful identity information for person recognition," Rice said. In several experiments, the
researchers had college-age participants look at images of two
people side by side and identify whether the images showed the same person or different people. Some of the image pairs looked similar even though they actually showed different people, while others looked different even though the pictures showed the same person. The image pairs were chosen this way so that the information provided by the subjects' faces was ambiguous and not very helpful in determining the subjects' identity, based on a computer face recognition system's performance with these image pairs. The researchers edited the 1BHK
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Drink plenty of lemon water Try to drink between 8- 10 glasses of filtered, pure water every day. It is the only way your liver can drive toxins out of your body. Better yet, start every day with a large glass of water with the fresh juice of one to one half lemon added. Lemon helps bolster your liver's detoxification abilities. The citric acid in lemon juice encourages the liver to produce bile, one more vehicle that your body uses to excrete toxins. Eat cruciferous vegetables Eat plenty of liver rebuilding foods, such as leafy greens, beets, carrots, cabbage, kale, arugula, collard greens and other veggies. They are recommended foods when doing a liver detox. Be sure to eat at least two serving a day. Eat lots of onions, garlic and broccoli since these vegetables contain sulfur which is required to increase the liver's detoxification ability. Detoxification in the liver requires considerable amounts of nutrients to function properly so be sure to take a high quality mineral supplement and multivitamin. Even a single nutrient deficiency can seriously interrupt natural detoxification processes. Do a little massage While lying flat on your back, you can gently massage the gallbladder and liver area, which is located along the lower rib on the right side of the body. This helps improve blood circulation to the liver.
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pictures in several of the experiments, omitting the subjects' bodies or faces to determine which features were most important for successful identification. Overall, participants were able to accurately discern whether the images showed the same person when they were provided complete images. And participants were as accurate in identifying image pairs in which the faces were blocked out and only the bodies were shown. But accuracy dropped off when participants saw images that included the subjects' faces but not their bodies. Participants stated afterwards that they used the nose, face shape, ears, mouth, and eyes as tools for identifying even though their results suggested otherwise. "This left us with a paradox. The recognition data clearly indicated the use of body information for identification. However, the subjective ratings suggested that participants were unaware of how important the body was in their decision," researchers said. Researchers used eye-tracking equipment to determine where participants were actually looking while identifying the images, and the results showed that participants spent relatively more time
looking at the body when the face did not provide enough information to identify the subjects. By showing that humans don't just rely on faces to identify others, researchers said the study opens up new avenues for developing and refining computer-based recognition systems.
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