Thursday, May 7, 2009

Change in Address... Click to Proceed

Kind notice for all readers...current economic meltdown along with early migration of Siberian cranes have lead to shifting of this blog to this ->

Nothing different....just for change ;)
Plz continue reading & commenting :)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Earth Day or just another Gimmick

World celebrated Earth Day with gusto as students, common people and governments showed lots of enthusiasm for the day. However does such events and celebrations serve their purpose or are just a way to overlook grave danger and desist responsibility...

Global concentration of carbon dioxide is now nearly 385 parts per million. Preindustrial carbon dioxide levels hovered around 280 ppm until 1850. Human activities pushed those levels up to 380 ppm by early 2006. Though no one can accurately predict the tipping point at which global catastrophe will occur, since 2000, annual increases of two parts per million or more have been common, compared with 1.5 ppm per year in the 1980s and less than one ppm per year during the 1960s, according to NOAA's Earth System Research Laboratory.

Common perception about containing global warming and reducing GHG emission ranges from the use of bio-fuels, controlling industrial emissions using economic methods like carbon tax, emission trading, shifting to cleaner sources of energy and most important of all self restraint. People all over the world highlighted the cause by following an international blackout last month for an hour along with lots of interactive and educative sessions in schools, colleges and public places on Earth Day. However does these things really help in any appreciable manner in the fight against global menace???

Answer is big NO. The problem of global warming is too big to be checked by such glitzy events and blackouts. Infact these lead people into misplaced sense of contributing towards the cause and diverts the attention from more important problems and alternatives. While the supporters of such events claim that they educate the masses about the ill effects of global warming, what is the benefit of such events if the same people relapse into high energy consuming life style the next day?? In fact the wasteful amount of energy, money and time spent on these events could be diverted into more useful channels.

Many important changes must be brought into the common thinking about present day environmental problems. First of all inspite of all these doomsday projections about global warming, why it is that the research papers giving counterviews are not highlighted. There is no benefit of exaggerating the impact of emissions and first a transparent and accurate estimate of the problem must be made. Only then and not by frightening, we will be able to convince the masses about the problem at hand.

Also steps must be taken to introduce personalized carbon trading by every government .Individuals who exceed their allocation (i.e. those who need more emissions credits than they have been given) would be able to purchase additional credits from the open market, and individuals that are under allocation can sell. Proponents of personal carbon trading claim that it could increase ‘carbon literacy’, thereby allowing individuals to make a fair contribution to reducing carbon dioxide emissions. It could allow the burden of reducing emissions to be shared evenly throughout the economy, rather than focusing all the attention on business and governments and having more impact than Earth Day like festivals. Only such steps will make masses more restraint in energy consumption.

On commercial and industrial front carbon markets must be made more transparent and misuse of carbon credits like mentioned in an article by Charles Forelle(WSJ) must be checked. In no way the process should appear like the transfer of responsibility from developed nations to developing world. Efforts must also be made in checking emissions from bottoms-up industrial level by improving efficiencies of industrial technologies and shifting to greener energy sources.

Only such sustained efforts on the part of governments, industrial houses and common people will help us to check the menace of global warming in a timely manner or not many Earth Days will be left to celebrate for our future generations...

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Bringing the wall down...

Recently the news of Tibet unrest overshadowed media as China went on crushing the Tibet rioters with a usual IRON FIST. World saw China unleashing close down on Tibet with every source of news out of China being shut. Great hue & cry was raised about the incident and China was criticized about its policy. But the story biased from perspective of the victim is always feared exaggerated. So what world saw or read was the general perception of how Chinese system control and functioning from the messages spread by loyal Dalai Lamas supporters worldwide. People viewed current Chinese crackdown as effort to salvage her reputation before Beijing Olympics and to prevent further demonstrations during the event.

However curtaining the freedom of press & using military crackdown on peaceful dissenters also raises questions about Chinese credibility and commitment towards ensuring peace in the region. First of all trying to dilute the identity of native people by inducing demographical changes and controlling daily affairs of monks and temples was the cause of outburst. People are always protective of their identity and any attempt to negate it always raises outcry. Maybe China can take a cue from India in these matters. India is the prime example of Unity in Diversity comprising of vastly different communities within its geographical boundary. India has always promoted and encouraged local culture and traditions giving reasonable powers to local bodies while at the same time placing a proper central control so as to prevent any dissenting tendencies. Sure there has been disturbances but in comparison to number of ethnic communities the experiment would be termed a success.

Also control of means of flow of information beyond certain extent lead to unrest as people then tend to take drastic steps in order to get attention from world community. Chinese authorities must realize this sooner or they must be prepared to face a rebellion at much bigger scale than this. Freedom of expression helps in peaceful venting of grievances and people find a proper platform to raise voice. Its not that US, EU or India does not faces any lesser problems but no such revolts happen there just because of freedom of expression thereby preventing a much sinister version of public unrest, reason for the fall of erstwhile Soviet Union.

However in my opinion Tibetan protesters must also realize that world has changed a lot from 1950 to 2008. Changes in IT and technology has given entirely new vision to lives and people are no longer restricted within their local environs. They must realize how difficult it would be for them to exist without the kind of help China can provide them in IT and infrastructure. They cannot remain isolated as a holy kingdom and let native Tibetans be deprived of modern advances. Nor would China let go a region full of natural reserves and a prime position in geopolitical scenario in central Asia.

Also countries like US should stop taking sides and use the situation to gain political mileage. Irresponsible statements and state visits like that of Nancy Pelosi will only increase mistrust at international stage. India faces a policy dilemma under current situation. India has rightfully granted refuge to Tibetans on its territory but that should not mean that any protests from its soil must be allowed. Its time to realize that for Indians the future lies together with Chinese and not against them. When India does not like anti-India propaganda propagated in POK how can we let the same happen against China.

So probably a middle path must be carved out between Chinese authorities and pro Dalai Lama Tibetans giving former the control over foreign policies while at the same time giving Tibetans sufficient room for governance through their own laws and customs. Most importantly one should not politicize Beijing Olympics. Olympics give nations platform to prove their mettle on field and every effort must be made to let it remain so. We does not want our future generations to look at 2008 Olympics the way we see earlier Munich and Moscow versions.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Another attempt to conquer the World

First one started in 17th century and resulted in a empire spread across entire planet and lasting for mammoth 300 years. Now another attempt is made to repeat that but in a peaceful manner. If Industrial revolution and gunpowder where the potent weapons then, this time around it is a small ball - an air-filled sphere with a circumference of 68–70 cm (or 27–28 inches), a weight 410–450 g (or 14–16 ounces), inflated to a pressure of 8–12 psi, and covered in leather or other suitable material. Yes football.

If recent proposals of English Premier League are to go by then each team in Barclay's Premier League will play one match abroad in the month of January starting 2010-11 season. This match will be a proper competitive match with its points contributing to the title race. Idea is taken from similar moves by NBA last year and promises globalization of already popular EPL. The Premier League is the most lucrative football league in the world, with total club revenues of over £1.4 billion in 2005–06 season according to Deloitte, 40% above its nearest competitor: Italy's Serie A. Revenues will increase to approximately £1.8 billion in the 2007–08 season, when new media rights deals start. Also EPL compares favorably with NBA, NFL & NHL in revenues and viewership. Then what is the main reason for this proposal??


Making teams play abroad is just a gimmick to swell the coffers of rich league as well as cash hungry owners of these clubs like Abramovichs and Glazers. But what problems this move could create must be pondered upon by EPL Board:

-> Making already grueling season more hectic. So it does not comes as a surprize that most of the managers are crying foul.

-> This will furthur increase the divide between top four and rest of the group. Honestly who would prefer watching Wigan vs Derbyshire in face of ManU vs Arsenal. So all to gain will be big clubs.

-> This will reduce the importance of local derbies. Liverpool vs Everton & Arsenal vs. Spurs make sense only in their hometowns not in far away Bangkok.

-> Who and how will these fixtures will be decided.

-> May alienate many faithful English fans. Also how many ardent supporters will be able to cheer their teams faraway.

These and many other questions must be answered by Board and only after discussions with managers must this proposal be put to practice. Meanwhile I am relishing Arsenal vs ManU in New Delhi... ;-)

Friday, January 4, 2008

New Force of India

India's clout in World of Motor Sports is surely increasing at a fast pace. After years of wait Indian flag is surely to make its mark in next chapter of F1 Championships this year around. India was on F1 maps due to heroics of Narayan Karthikeyan and Karun Chandok, however it was lacking support and fanbase. Then came "Man of Happier Times" - liquor barron and aviator - Vijay Mallya who has truly changed F1 scenario of the country. His buying of Spyker F1 team in october alongside Michiel Mol. Now more and more people are turning towards this high adrenaline sport so far restricted among rich nd devoted motor sport fans. How successful this venture will be will be seen in months to come. This development followed announcement of Indian Grand Prix by year 2010 near Noida which will certainly boost F1 viewership in India. Today Giancarlo Fisichella's name was finalised for the second seat primarily because of the experience he brings to the team. The Renault driver will be partnering Adrian Sutil, who drove for Force India's earlier avatar - Spyker. He also drove for the team during winter practice sessions. Emergence of an Indian Team can also mean opportunity for Indian pair Karthekayen and Chandok in years to come.

However holding F1 in India is a mammoth task.

- F1 involves big sums of money and for setting up F1 infrastructure in India lots of investment will be required both from Private and Public sector. Barring TATA and Kingfischer only few are involved in sponsering Motor Sports and apprehension of other players must be removed soon.

-India lacks infrastructure at present and infact no airport in India can fulfill the F1 requirements. Each team travels in several jumbo jets and in total airports are required to handle nearly 40-45 jumbos at same time. However organizers are claiming that renewated Delhi airport will be able to overcome this problem. But it is a well known fact that Indian contractors delay projects by 2-3 years.

- Also a big problem in India is that Sports are synonymous with Cricket. This mentallity of Indian viewer must be quickly changed. Indian owned F1 team will surely help the cause. Mallya can furthur popularize the sport in country by giving opportunities to Indian drivers once the team is settled.

- Problem is furthur aggrevated by lack of Five & Seven star Hotels around NCR.

- Internal fued and lack of co-ordiantion among various ministries must also be held to bring this plan to light. Some people also accused Surash Kalmadi of taking credit for procuring F1 deal. Both the Motorsports Association of India and the Federation of Motorsports Clubs of India have expressed some scepticism. The latter's president, Rajat Mazumbar, has said that "The only authorised body that can run motorsports in the country is ours" despite the fact the deal has been signed with the Indian Olympic Association.

However inspite of these complications involving India in F1 is a welcome step for FIA. India has a very large fanbase alongside Business potential which if properly tapped can take revenue and popularity to new hights. Selection of site in NCR is also a welcome step as New Delhi is one of the most well connected cities of India. Also 2010 Commenwealth Games will provide with great infrastructural support to F1 race in the region.

A lot will depend on how next season unfolds and success of the team. Selection of experienced driver like Fisichella will boost the morale of Team ForceIndia. Till then just wait for Australian Grand Prix on March 14th.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

2007 in retrospect

As the year 2007 rolls before our eyes, this must be the best time to introspect about what was promised, what we gained and what was lost this year. The year 2007 was a mixed bag with new techies for nerds,lot of political and warmongering, debacles and resurgence in sports.Nature was a bit friendly this time around (still a day to go). As you sit in comfort in front of your screens sipping coffee and
enjoying New Year lets have 2007 in retrospect. This is not any best or worst list but is just the remainder of why will remember this year (or probably try to forget it).

Year when Apple became Microsoft (OS Wars):

This year saw the launch of much anticipated Apple iPhone with the aim of changing the way people use there phones and communicate. Replacing off all cumbersome
buttons with a beautiful touchscreen and providing all host of other features made this a most successful product of the year and this was confirmed as Apple sold approx. 5 million iPhones by year end. Apple also introduced latest of its series of macs with launch of feature rich Leopard. On the other hand Microsoft carried on with its scrappy and buggy Vista OS and released its sp1. On Linux front newer versions of OS were launched and conversion rate from Windows and Macs substantially increased. However the thing this year will be remembered for will be that Apple started adopting policies which made it assume the role of Microsoft. From DRM controversy to
ringtones on iPhone to 3rd Party Apps and similar other anti-customer policies made lots of Addle devouts think again who were supported by iWoz. With growing sales of its iPod, iPhone and Macs there is also a growing resentment against Apple and Steve Jobs must do a serious thinking here.

Bush fire..Iraq..Iran and counting:

After “Mission Accomplished” in Iraq, Bush this time around tried to turn Americans towards Iran. However due to American elections next year, lack of World support and findings of last NIE his support is all time low. Bush's position further weakened on
international front due to his stand on issues like Iran sanctions,emissions and also due to exit of his right hand man Tony Blair. He is at present not only troubled by internal problems like elections, medicare etc but problems in Pakistan, Middle East and growing clout of Russia also are a major cause of concern.

Europe loses its E:

Probably this was the biggest Sports news of the year as Mighty England were ousted from the Euro2008 Cup to be held in Austria-Switzerland next year. With a loss to Russia in Moscow and
poor performance in qualifying this was imminent. Even with all the big players like Lampard, Gerrard, Cole & Beckham this was quite embarrassing besides costing a fortune to FA. FA in the end made a face-saving attempt by replacing Steve McLaren with Fabio Capello. English football is rotten to roots as we see in every major
competitions and until work on building a sound base, team spirit and controlling player egos is done it will be difficult seeing England qualifying even for next World cup.

Even 123 gets difficult:

Probably this was the most embarrassing event for India. As India was about to enter Official league of Nuclear states, on the verge of getting perennial fuel supply, technology and
investment, the party was spoiled be CPI who claim to be the only true communist party in the World. They are neither communists, are a bunch of zealots instead of a party and are neither Indian taking orders from China. Not only have they stagnated West Bengal, they also prevent ruling INC from introducing any sound measures. And as
Nandigram boiled what they did was not less than Gujarat Carnage. There opposition to government policies, interrupting functioning and making Taslima Nasreen leave WB towards the year end always kept them in News but all for wrong reasons.

Global warming heats up the Big League:

This was the year when Environment and Global finally became important issues on International Stage. With a Nobel being given for this cause & various doomsday projections people have began to realize the severity of the problem. International Conferences & Bali Meet also highlighted the importance of the issue. This year also saw the efforts to reduce the cost of generation of solar electricity and first such commercial panels were also introduced. There success depends on availability, public motivation and government policies.But this has become clear that global warming is the most important problem facing mankind. Though many issues remain unattended like
responsibility of developed nations, adherence to emission standards etc.

T20 bang on:

Probably the only big and good news for India this year was T20 World Cup win in South Africa. Though started 3-4 years back as an experiment in county cricket, people had its first experience and they loved it. This World Cup in stark difference to earlier held World Cup was a big success. Not only matches were less time consuming making it highly audience friendly but the overall length of tournament was also decreased from original edition. Definitely T20 is here to stay and seriously questions the relevance of 50 over cricket.

Some more additions can also be made like
+ Ferrari-McLaren Dispute
+ Bhutto Assassination
+ Year of Rehabs
+ Resurgence under Wenger
+ 2 girls 1 cup :P

If you feel something more should also be added then surely fire me a mail
at or leave a comment. Wishing you and your family Seasons greetings and a Happy New Year.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Bhutto Assassinated - Ramifications

RAWALPINDI, Pakistan (CNN) -- Pakistan's former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was assassinated Thursday after addressing a large gathering of her supporters. Bhutto died of a gunshot wound to the neck, the Pakistani Interior Ministry said. The attacker then blew himself up. The bomb attack killed at least 22 others, doctors said.
(Courtesy CNN)

Not unexpected. Yet unthinkable and horrible.This must be in the minds of most of the people as they come to terms with assassination of Benazir Bhutto. Bhutto was in present times a hope for Pakistan's future and had a massive following with masses.

Ever since Bhutto returned Pakistan was inflamed with Political activity. Her touchdown welcome attack with killed hundreds in October was just a remainder of things to come. Surely being a front runner for elusive PM seat she had many opponents ready to kill her to advance their political ambitions.A widow of former Prime Minister and being a woman in Islamic Republic further could have worked against her. Though myself not a big fan of Bhutto, I surely feel she was the need of the hour for mending Pakistani political turmoil. She had a large base, could bring people to table to solve issues and was probably most able face for Musharraf's scheme of things. But if Musharraf is not directly involved, it is still his fault of not maintaining law and order with whole truckloads of army and personnel. Now this tragedy will be introspected over the coming days and hopefully murderers will be caught. But its ramifications on various people and groups can be guessed:

On Pakistan: Surely will suffer the most. Losing their leader in a country seriously void of able leaders will give them a big jolt towards achieving free democracy. But this will surely fuel more violence and unrest in Pakistan in days to come.

On Musharraf: On top of the list of usual suspects at this juncture to point fingers at is Musharraf. Sadly he also knows this and also probably the attackers (considering they weren't in same league with Musharraf). Bhutto was an important part of Musharraf's future strategy and her loss along with violence accompanied with hit will be a big setback for him. Must assuage Bhutto supporters now and mend ways with Nawaz Sharif.

On Nawaz Sharif: will surely gain from this as his way is now almost clear for being next Prime Minister. However anti-government, pro-Taliban and pro-Bhutto supporters will be ready to pounce on him now. Must now lead the way is bringing all factions to table with the help of Musharraf and bring some order in already torn house.

On India: Sadly we can only wait and watch. As before, its still the case of choosing bad from worst. No leader in Pakistan has any genuine aspirations to maintain healthy cross border relations beyond regular PR exercises. But in my point of view Pakistan in turmoil is much worst than under the control of corrupt but stable government which can keep Talibani fractions under control.

On America and World: America has reiterated time to time of importance of Pakistan in so called "War on Terror". But with Pakistan in trouble they have a much bigger problem than Iran. In Iran there is a doubt of Nuclear weapons. But here is a full blown chance of the same passing into the hands of terror groups as government control weakens. Hence they must act quickly to somehow restore peace in Pakistan.

Though it is very early to comment on the outcome and ramifications of these attacks, we can only hope that peace is quickly restored and democracy prevails on our neighboring doors. Mrs Benazir Bhutto RIP.