Espionage Case: DELHI RINGS WARNING BELLS…

Sarkaritel
By Sarkaritel February 23, 2015 12:29

Espionage Case: DELHI RINGS WARNING BELLS…


Espionage Case

DELHI RINGS WARNING BELLS

By Insaf

Delhi, the national capital stinks after the ‘oil spill’. The sensational corporate-espionage case involving the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas has wider repercussions for the country’s governance. The middleman syndrome may well involve the senior bureaucracy. It cannot be ruled out. The case, which involves official documents being photocopied and leaked to consultants and energy companies and sold to corporate, shows that the espionage has been going on for long. Regulations were obviously given the go by as documents of the Ministry are valuable and have a major impact on the market. Obviously, the corporate would try to get their hands on it. And, it may not be the case alone of this Ministry, but perhaps many more such as coal, power, finance etc. Recall the Nira Radia tapes which showed the politicians-corporate-bureaucrats nexus, sending shock waves. But nothing really came of it. Will it be the same this time around too? For as of now only peons of the Ministry have been caught. They were only conduits, but for whom? Further, how did they get access to the documents, is another question. The Delhi police has a lot to investigate. Will it get to the bottom of it all? And, while corporate espionage is not new, the NDA government must be prepared to call a spade a spade, once the mystery unravels. It needs the corporate for its “Make in India”, but it shouldn’t allow it to ‘slip’ and fall on its face.

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Bihar’s Big Tamasha

Bihar’s big political fight turned out to be a whimper. Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi after much muscle-flexing simply gave up against mentor and former Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. The trial of strength between the two in the Assembly was not even required as Manjhi threw in the towel, even before it could meet. Nitish wears the crown again after eight months. He has the support of his flock of JD(U) MLAs and Congress, the RJD and the CPI. But he must prove his majority in three weeks. While he will succeed, he has to prepare for the bigger battle ahead. Manjhi, who is the dalits’ ‘icon’ will try to seek his pound of flesh in the Assembly polls later this year and is certain to wean away a large chunk of JD(U) supporters. At the same time, Nitish will need to have his answers ready to the people on why there was a change in mind and sought the throne again. In all this, the BJP, which is waiting in the wings, will need to decide how to win over Manjhi, who it seems to have betrayed. The coming months should put Bihar politics in the forefront. The big question would be was all this drama necessary for Nitish and the ruling JD(U)?

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MP Scam Gets Murky

Madhya Pradesh is reeling under a murky scam. The opposition has trained its guns against top man, Chief Minister Shiv Raj Chouhan. Not only has the Congress accused him of being part and parcel of the teachers’ appointment scam, but of tampering evidence. He must resign is the demand. But Chouhan has rubbished the claim saying: “Rajas and maharajas of the Congress are unable to stomach a farmer’s son running the government”! But will that suffice? The Congress has produced excel sheets which originally had the CM’s name against the appointees, but disappeared in the second sheet. The Opposition has also demanded the Governor’s resignation following his son’s alleged involvement. The Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board (MPPEB) scandal, which involves politicians, businessmen and officials, is undeniably causing an embarrassment to the BJP government. More so, after the High Court has directed the Special Task Force to proceed against a “high-ranking dignitary”. How high and who, needs to be keenly watched.

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TN, WB Ignore Corruption

Corruption doesn’t seem to be an issue in Tamil Nadu or West Bengal this season. Despite conviction of AIADMK supremo and former Chief Minister Jayalalitha in a corruption case last year, the voters in Srirangam gave a resounding victory to her candidate Valarmathi in the Assembly byelection. Jayalalitha had to step down after the court verdict and while she didn’t campaign, the margin, over 96,000 came as a pleasant surprise—it’s the biggest in the State’s recent bypoll history. Likewise, the ruling Trinamool Congress doesn’t seem to be affected by the multi-crore Saradha scam, involving some of its party leaders. In the two byelections—Bongaon Lok Sabha seat and Krishnaganj Assembly seat, the TMC candidates won. Better still, it was a record victory margin in the LS seat. And, both the leaders had a veiled message for the BJP-led government at the Centre. The two thanked the electorate saying the results were the people’s reply to ‘political opponents’ conspiracies.’ However, both can ill-afford to be complacent. Battle 2016 will be the real test.

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Haryana To Lead Protest

Will Haryana trigger a crisis for the Centre? Notwithstanding that the State is ruled by the BJP, social activist and anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare has chosen to lead his next battle from its ground. On Friday last, he held a road show and flagged off a padyatra of farmers from Palwal district against the land acquisition ordinance. The march will culminate at Delhi, at Jantar Mantar, where recall he had begun his Jan Lokpal movement. Hazare is asking nothing short of withdrawal of the ordinance as he says it is anti-farmer and pro-corporate. While farmers from Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh and Odisha joined the road show, what numbers reach Delhi will be worth a watch. These should swell as AAP too has its anti-ordinance plan in place and would lend support. It has started a Jai Kisan Abhiyan in Gurgaon and has vowed to undertake state-wide protests. With Parliament session beginning today, the NDA must have its strategy in place and not take Hazare lightly. Importantly, it shouldn’t forget the Jan Lokpal movement, which sought to and did change the system. Will Haryana be another spark?

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Adoption Cheers

There’s good news for those wanting to adopt children. The tardy process will soon be passé.

The Union Ministry of Women and Child Development has informed States, Specialised Adoption agencies, NGOs among others that Guidelines Governing Adoption of Chidren-2015 will soon be notified, helping speed up the process and introduce transparency. This year, Minister Maneka Sanjay Gandhi wants a target of 15,000 adoptions and warned that there would be ‘zero tolerance’ for those who dilly-dally. In fact, the entire adoption process shouldn’t take more than four months and agencies’ performance would now be under close watch of the Child Adoption Resource Authority. Participants at the Annual National Meet on Adoption in Delhi would have no reason to frown over the tough posture as sadly there are over 50,000 orphans in the country who can be adopted, with more being added daily. However, childless couples who yearn to adopt kids are often disappointed and are told to wait because of “unavailability of children”! Time, the Ministry has its way, and gives hope to both children and couples. —INFA

(Copyright, India News and Feature Alliance)

Sarkaritel
By Sarkaritel February 23, 2015 12:29