Saturday, September 30, 2006

Highly Deplorable..

If he had even an iota of shame left in him, he wouldn't have proposed something like this. I was seething with anger as soon as I unfolded the newspaper in the morning today.

Earlier this week, the prime accused in the Parliament attack, that took place in 2001, was given capital punishment. And the way the state of J&K has reacted to it is very unfortunate. Since the verdict, the state has seen widespread violence with the masses taking to streets against the decision. And today's newspaper carried the news of J&K CM Ghulam Nabi Azad pleading to PM for clemency.

I fail to understand what precedents this "politician" is setting. Is he advocating for the attack on the parliament? Does he think that these attacks are justified?

At the same time, I also fail to understand that what has made this terrorism-infested state back a terrorist. Is there any important point that I am missing here? Or is it that, this is just a facade that's being created by those who wish to breed unrest in the valley to create anti-India sentiments?

Other "politicians" like Mahbooba Mufti of PDP has also joined the bandwagon saying that when Indo-Pak relations are improving, Indian Govt should take positive steps. What relations is she talking about? The ones that are 'In The Line of Fire'?

The situation getting really messy here. Hope the Indian Govt acts in a responsible & matured manner.


Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Lage raho FM channels

Radio, as a medium of communication, has come of age in India. 2 of the biggest hit movies in last one year has had radio channel playing a pivotal role. So much so that, that without this medium the very treatment of the movie would have been significantly different and so might have been the impact as well.

For long, radio has been a very powerful means of communication in India. While prior to 1971, it was the only electronic means of communication, in recent times it got a new lease of life once private radio FM channels made their entry into India. These channels have a very affable ‘voice & feel’ to them that listeners can connect themselves to.

Apart from the entertainment bit of it, one big positive about these channels is they being true to the news rather than sensationalizing them – something that TV channels thrive on. Be it floods in Mumbai or 7/11 or traffic guidance during Ganapati immersion, almost all these channels spread the useful info to its listeners.

Cut to movies. Lage Raho Munnabhai had this ‘good job’ of radio channels used effectively – this time to spread the message of Gandhigiri across masses. And the act is so convincing that one really tends to believe that this medium does have the power to bring in the kind of ‘revolution in the system’ that many of us are waiting for.

The first ray of hope was shown by ‘Rang De Basanti’. Once again a movie, the climax of which relied heavily upon the radio channel. And you have large gathering of people on huge grounds with hero of the movie screaming loudly in the mike, quietly replaced by an air-conditioned studio room with the hero softly conveying his thoughts that reaches not thousands but millions of people.

The way both the directors have used dial-in Q&A format of radio communication has been very effective. Not only it makes the entire drama convincing for the viewers but also does not sound ‘preaching’. And still manages to convey the right things.

Can we really expect this medium to bring in some degree of social revolution? Or it happens in movies only?


Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Sequel to ‘The Gora Arrogance’

It’s a kind of sequel to my last post about Darrel Hair and what I call ‘Gora Arrogance’.

This one’s about submissiveness of Indians and their lack of confidence to stand & fight for one’s basic human rights. This incidence happened in Amsterdam a few days back when the India bound flight was turned back and 15-odd passengers with ‘suspicious behavior’ were tortured & grilled for 3 days only to release them as ‘innocents’. Just in a span of few days, a US-bound student was deplaned in Frankfurt, once again – the common factor being an Indian Muslim.

Why should not these people sue the Dutch & German governments for the anguish that they have to withstand during these testing times? All of them have had horror stories to tell on their return to India. All TV channels had a great interest in extracting exclusive bytes from these people, but nobody willing to take up their cause.

What these people have undergone not violation of basic human rights? If yes, then what’s stopping Indian Ministry of External Affairs to take up their case and raise a stink at the international level? I’m sure, having experienced mercilessness of the westerners; these poor people will not gather any courage to fight a case on their own. But I would like to believe that that’s where and that’s why the government should step in, and help the victims get due compensation.

I think these small steps are necessary to make India’s voice heard at the international level. And if not nipped in the bud, it may only increase. If Israel can launch an attack on Syria for the 2 of its soldiers being kidnapped then shouldn’t India at least stand by its citizens to get due compensation for the broad daylight torture.