Aarushi Talwar- Book, Movie, Life

 

It was described as the murder (or murders) that shook the psyche of the Indian middle-class. Continue reading ”            Aarushi Talwar- Book, Movie, Life”

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Kerala- What lies ahead

Kerala- What lies ahead

 

The long election season finally culminated with the Left assuming power with an irrefutable majority here in Kerala. This election was touted as too close to call by many experts.The campaign by political parties also had a makeover this time moving from the  mundane to a more corporate style.The taglines were a feast for trollers.

But what ultimately tilted the stakes in LDF’s favour was ‘politics’,the tried and tested garden-variety type.The usual lethargy keralites feel with an incumbent government also helped their cause. The influence of religious denominations is evident from the voting pattern and it proved to be the single-most deciding factor in many constituencies. The causes for the defeat will be analysed as usual by the UDF,even though the causes and the remedy are a moot point.

Now for the Left this victory could not have come at a better time. Their rout in West Bengal and CPI(M) losing the national party status might have dampened the mood a bit, but the excitement is palpable. With Pinarayi Vijayan who is known to be a no non-sense administrator at the helm the people too is optimistic. He has been vocal about the development needs of the state and one can hope that the many flagship projects of the outgoing government will continue without any glitch.

But the biggest challenge this Govt is going to face will be that of law & order. The many incidents right after the results were announced  bear testimony to this caveat. The RSS-Left clashes especially in northern Kerala has been a continuing theme and now with an overzealous left cadre and an unrelenting RSS the tensions are sure to reach fever pitch. The idea may seem a little far fetched right now but the possibility of somethng like a President’s rule being imposed cannot be ruled out considering the trigger-happy NDA Govt at the centre. The new Govt will have to tread lightly in this regard. The comments yesterday by some Union Ministers was more of a veiled threat and composure is the need of the hour.

As for the UDF electoral setbacks are nothing new but the magnitude of the defeat requires accountability.It is true that LDF beat them at their own game and their trusted minority vote-bank cashed their cheque elsewhere. The time is ideal for a revamp, if not an overhaul . Shashi Tharoor has correctly pointed out the one silver lining from this election- the many young Congress candidates winning. So it is time for congress to show that they mean business. The first opportunity at hand is naming the Leader of Opposition and the 2021 election should be kept in mind while making that decision.

The role media played in this election cannot be over-emphasised. As Oommen Chandy requested the media to offer full support to the new Govt, not like they offered him there were a few laughs. He said without saying their contribution to his downfall. With our society being overly mediated these days the clout media has on influencing our public opinion is massive. Free will is not that free after all. With Pinarayi Vijayan not exactly a poster child for the media and the watchful eyes of the newly anointed Fidel Castro of Kerala, V S Achuthanandan hovering over his every move the times will be exciting to say the least.

Kiran Gandhi

New Low for Literate Kerala

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Statistics does not always tell the true story. If you go by stats alone, then Kerala is really an enviable state boasting off the chart literacy rates and other Human Development Indices. But the incidents in recent years show that we are in a downward spiral. And today marked another new low when the legislative assembly was turned into a playground. It was the budget presentation day and the opposition were determined not to let K M Mani present the budget. The reason being the alleged bribery charges against the finance minister.

Whatever the reason, the unruly behaviour of the MLA’s is a real shame and adds to the already burgeoning apathy of common man towards the democratic process. Though democracy boasts of giving the power to the people, incidents like these are stark realisation about how helpless the people really are.

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The scenes inside the assembly were reminiscent of a football match gone wild. There were tackles flying around, simulations, biting (yes biting! Suarez would have been proud) etc and both sides had a definite game plan. LDF employed zonal marking and marked the speaker out of his dais. They then broke the speaker’s chair and computer and there was no one to flag them offside. One particular sight to laugh off was the charge of MLA BijiMol. It was reminiscent of one of those runs YaYa Toure makes from midfield. When he goes on such a run, he is unstoppable. Bijimol also looked unstoppable until Shibu Baby John spotted the danger and blocked her off. It was one of those “irresistible force meets an immovable object” moments.

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The minister had to read the Budget highlights from the media room. There  were vandalism of even greater proportion outside with stone pelting and Vehicles set ablaze. This is by far the most energy ever spent in an assembly session in Kerala’s history. It is the general public’s loss that their glorified representatives couldn’t channelize it towards something creative.