Tag Archives: world news

Why IPL-IV Wasn’t A Hit

10 Jun

Didn’t Cricket’s T20 format advertise itself as one modelled to ensure a nail-biting finish with the climax stretching to the last ball/last over? Perhaps why, it has stuck to the script for the last three IPL editions and doled out quite a few exciting contests and helped in promoting both the league and the format. What worked in its interest was that the quality of players didn’t seem to affect the outcome or more importantly the excitement of the game.

 

Unfortunately though, that didn’t seem to have been the case in the recently concluded fourth edition, which hasn’t only quashed any such definite notions about the format, but has also thwarted most of the appeal that the previous seasons had gathered. It’s alarming to note that for every one close encounter this season, there have been thrice as many one-sided affairs. This is simply anti-T20 policy. So, what has led to such a drastic change in IPL’s basic character? The obvious reason seems to be the thinning of domestic/international talent and hence the decline in quality. The player pool hasn’t swelled but the numbers of participating teams have. Let’s take a closer look.

 

Overseas recruits

 

The induction of foreign recruits in each team was not only to give the league an international touch but also to get top quality cricketers on board. It was only fair to assume that these foreign recruits would, every now and then, win the game on their own. Since only 4 overseas players were allowed in the playing XI, it was imperative to get quality cricketers on board.

 

But with the International commitments clashing with the IPL and the political stand-off (in case of Pakistani cricketers), top cricketers from at least three strong cricketing nations – Australia, England and Pakistan have stayed away this season. While there were still quite a few brilliant cricketers around, there were a lot of second string international recruits too.

 

Most teams played at least one overseas player to make up the numbers despite knowing that the player isn’t a match winner. Otherwise why would you see the likes of Mitchell Marsh, Nathan Rimmington, Mathew Wade, Davy Jacobs, Stephen O’Keefe etc playing in the IPL? I don’t mean to offend anyone but aren’t these guys just good domestic cricketers in their respective countries? Would you play them if you had International cricketers to choose from? More importantly replacing an Indian domestic player with an International ‘domestic’ player is never going to raise the standard.

 

Indian recruits

 

There’s been a lot of talk about the paucity of good Indian talent and the thinning of the existing talent (because of the increase in teams) leading to the decline in the quality. But are we really seeing things as they are or there’s more to it than what meets the eye?

 

Here’re a few Indian cricketers who impressed in the domestic circuit—Varun Aaron, the guy from Jharkhand, who bowled the fastest ball by an Indian. Pawan Suyal, a young left-arm seam bowler from Delhi who caught everyone’s eye in the domestic circuit. Sumit Narwal, arguably the best all-rounder in the domestic circuit this season. Pankaj Singh, the highest wicket-taker in the first-class season. Deepak Chahar, another young prodigy who took the world by storm on his debut. Abhinav Mukund, the left-hander from Tamil Nadu scored heavily for his team and South Zone.

 

These cricketers and many others like them were picked up by the IPL franchisees on the back of their domestic performances. But unfortunately these guys didn’t enough chances to showcase their skill in the IPL.

 

No, I’m not blaming the franchisees for not giving them an opportunity, since the IPL may not be about providing a platform, but winning the contests. I am only underlining the fact that certain players were stuck in a team that didn’t have a place for them in the XI. While there was a plethora of fast bowlers in Delhi Daredevils, Kings XI struggled to find decent Indian fast bowlers. Pune Warriors and CSK could easily spare a few unused batsmen which teams like DD and Kochi could have happily utilized.

 

When there’s an obvious scarcity, it’s unfair to hoard talent. How about having a window of trading during the IPL season to replenish the resources, for doing it after the season is a tad too late? Also, it’s imperative to ensure the availability of International players from stronger nations else we would have to entertain the thought of playing 5 overseas players instead of the existing four.

Barack Obama discusses Osama operation with PM Manmohan Singh

10 May

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President Barack Obama spoke over the phone on Monday night and discussed the American operation that killed Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad in Pakistan and also talked about the situation in the region.

A PMO spokesman said Singh and Obama also discussed further growth and development of Indo-US relations. “It was a warm conversation which covered wide-ranging subjects,” he said.

A statement issued by White House in Washington said Obama spoke to Singh to discuss the “successful American action against Osama bin Laden.” However, it did not give further details.

This is the first conversation between the two leaders since the killing of Osama on May 2 in a raid by US Special Forces in the garrison city of Abbottabad.

The White House statement said the two leaders also reviewed progress in implementing the initiatives launched during Obama’s November 2010 visit to India.

“The two leaders re-affirmed their commitment to building a global, strategic partnership, including defence cooperation, and looked forward to the upcoming meetings of the Strategic Dialogue, the Homeland Security Dialogue, the Joint Space Working Group and the High-Technology Cooperation Group,” the statement said.

The two leaders also discussed global and regional issues of mutual concern.

Singh had termed bin Laden’s killing as “a significant step forward” and asked the international community and Pakistan in particular to work comprehensively to end the activities of all terror groups.

The Prime Minister had hoped that bin Laden’s elimination would deal a “decisive blow” to al Qaeda and other terrorist groups”.

Osama protected by ISI elements: report

5 May

An influential American daily today claimed that there are signs that slain Al Qaeda chief Osama Bin Laden was being protected by some elements of the Pakistan’s notorious spy agency ISI.

“There’s no doubt he (Bin Laden) was protected by some in the ISI,” an unnamed European official was quoted as saying by The Wall Street Journal.

It said US and European intelligence officials believe active or retired Pakistani military or intelligence officials provided some measure of aid to Al Qaeda leader Bin Laden, allowing him to stay hidden in a large compound just a mile from an elite military academy in Abbottabad.

Helping the effort will be the cache of computers, storage drives and other materials taken from Bin Laden’s residence, the daily said.

It said two senior US officials and a high-level European military-intelligence official, who have direct working knowledge of Pakistan’s military intelligence agency ISI, say similar elements linked to the ISI have aided other Pakistan-based terror groups, the Haqqani militant network and Lashkar-e-Taiba.

However, according to one intelligence official, who has extensive experience in Pakistan, the ISI would have responded immediately when the compound came under attack if it had been his protector.

According to the Journal, US officials say they have evidence that the Haqqani network, a militant group based in Pakistan’s mountainous North Waziristan region, receives material support from the ISI in executing attacks against US and NATO forces in neighboring Afghanistan.

Lashkar-e-Taiba carried out a deadly 2008 assault in Mumbai.

A similar statement was made by Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in an interview to the Dawn newspaper last month.

Bin Laden was shot dead in a pre-dawn helicopter-borne secret US operation in Abbottabad near Islamabad, raising questions whether the establishment knowingly harboured him.

Both the White House and the CIA have said that they are looking into the possibility of support infrastructure that Bin Laden enjoyed from the establishment at his hideout.

In classified briefings with top lawmakers, senior national security officials, said they were looking for evidence that elements within the ISI and the army played a direct or indirect role in protecting the Al Qaeda leader.

(Sources – http://www.business-standard.com/india/news/osama-protected-by-isi-elements-report/134087/on)

Don’t malign our mission, rein in colleagues: Anna Hazare to Sonia Gandhi

19 Apr

Social activist Anna Hazare on Monday wrote to Congress President Sonia Gandhi on the “smear” campaign launched against civil society members of the joint drafting committee on Lokpal Bill and asked her to advise her “colleagues” not to try to derail the process of drafting of law.

 In a two-page letter to Gandhi, he complained against a party General Secretary, apparently Digvijay Singh who has been attacking his campaign, of making many statements which were “factually wrong” and asked her whether she approved them.

 He also refereed to an unnamed minister, who is part of the the ten-member joint committee on the bill, and charged him with making false statements that the civil society representatives have “succumbed” to government’s pressure and “diluted” the law.

 As the war over the alleged fake CD involving eminent lawyer and panel co-chair Shanti Bhushan intensified, he said “the developments of the last few days have been a cause for concern.

“It seems that the corrupt forces in the country have united to derail the process of drafting an effective anti-corruption law through the joint committee. Together we have to defeat their designs,” Hazare said.

 He said one of their strategies is to “smear the reputations” of civil society members in the committee.

 “Whereas I am of the view that the people working for public must be subjected to public scrutiny, however, when blatantly false accusations are made, fabricated CDs are planted, then one feels that the purpose is not an honest public scrutiny but to tarnish reputations.

“They have not even spared me, even though I have lived a simple life following on the path of truth. However, I am happy that despite all their efforts, the vested interests could not dig out anything of substance. This has only raised the reputations of civil society members in the eyes of public,” he said.

 The Gandhian said smear campaign of vested interests seemed to be back firing and people could see through what was happening.

 He warned that the country was in “no mood” to wait any longer to have a strong anti-corruption law and expressed fears about the consequences if the process was “derailed” as people were “very agitated”.

 Hazare wondered what would be the outcome if the government nominees in the committee were subjected to “similar scrutiny or witch hunt”.


Rahul working towards ending corruption: Anna Hazare

17 Apr

Social activist Anna Hazare on Sunday (April 16) reacted to Rahul Gandhi’s comment on how the AICC General Secretary was silently and continuously working to rid the system of corruption. 

Speaking to reporters in New Delhi Anna said, “I feel that the youth should work towards the progress of our country. I do not feel that Rahul would have pointed towards me while making that statement. It is good that he is working towards ending corruption.” 

Acknowledging the menace of corruption, the Gandhi scion had said that he has continuously been working against corruption. Rahul said that he has been trying to improve the rotten system rather than just complaining about it and shifting the onus on officials. 

Rahul Gandhi said, “I spend a lot of my waking hours thinking and working to improve what I see as a rotten system. The difference is that I cannot get away simply with writing letters and complaining as you can. I am faced with reality of changing things which requires much more than the periodic release of emotion.

Inspirational Story Of APJ Abdul Kalam

17 Apr

There were about 70 scientists working on a very hectic project. All of them were really frustrated due to the pressure of work and the demands of their boss but everyone was loyal to him and did not think of quitting the job.

One day, one scientist came to his boss and told him – Sir, I have promised to my children that I will take them to the exhibition going on in our township. So I want to leave the office at 5 30 pm. His boss replied “OK, You’re permitted to leave the office early today”. The Scientist started working. He continued his work after lunch. As usual he got involved to such an extent that he looked at his watch when he felt he was close to completion. The time was 8.30 PM. Suddenly he remembered of the promise he had given to his children.

He looked for his boss, He was not there. Having told him in the morning itself, he closed everything and left for home.

Deep within himself, he was feeling guilty for having disappointed his children. He reached home. Children were not there. His wife alone was sitting in the hall and reading magazines.

The situation was explosive, any talk would boomerang on him. His wife asked him “Would you like to have coffee or shall I straight away serve dinner if you are hungry.

The man replied “If you would like to have coffee, I too will have but what about Children ??” .Wife replied “You don’t know?? , Your manager came here at 5.15 PM and has taken the children to the exhibition “.

What had really happened was …. The boss who granted him permission was observing him working seriously at 5.00 PM. He thought to himself, this person will not leave the work, but if he has promised his children they should enjoy the visit to exhibition. So he took the lead in taking them to exhibition The boss does not have to do it every time. But once it is done, loyalty is established.

That is why all the scientists at Thumba continued to work under their boss even though the stress was tremendous.

By the way, can you hazard a guess as to who the boss was ?

He was none other than Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam . 

Narendra Modi and Adolf Hitler!

16 Apr

Narendra Modi and the rise of his party have many similarities with Adolf Hitler and rise of Nazis in Germany. Modi’s victory bodes ill for this nation.

In a state where Mahatma Gandhi was born, we have a leader now who confesses his targeting of Muslims, and yet, people vote him back into power. Hitler used to openly confess his contempt for Jews and yet people backed him. Modi is a bachelor, like Hitler. He is (supposedly) not corrupt (like Hitler). He is vegetarian (like Hitler) and has contempt for meat-eaters. He goes after his agenda which he makes it clear right in the beginning (like Hitler) and it involves targeting certain sections blaming them for all ills of the society. The economic prosperity in the land is high (like under Hitler), and his goons are ready to target and kill one community (like under Hitler) with protection from the state apparatus. Like Hitler, Modi practices and spends lot of time on mastering his oratory. Like Hitler, he creates an image and persona that is much more than the party and the ideology.

Modi is in-your-face candid about his wrongdoings (like Hitler) which people see as a sign of honesty in comparison to other weak and corrupt leaders who push the same agenda but are not honest about it. Congress and Left have no better track record when it comes to protecting the interests of minority religions in this country. Their record is same or even worse compared to that of Mr. Narendra Modi. The difference is that Narendra Modi just accepts what he does. A known, strong and honest criminal is better than a hypocrite, weak and dishonest criminal – that seems to be the attitude of Indian people.

It’s unfortunate that we have come to this. It’s unfortunate that our leaders could not set right examples. The examples of Mahatma Gandhi, Nehru, Ambedkar, Shastri, Patel, Radhakrishnan, etc, are long gone. We are bereft of good examples. When everyone is a criminal, an honest and strong one is most preferred. Hence, Narendra Modi!

Adolf Hitler came to power riding similar sympathies. When accused of bringing a government down, he honestly said, yes, and was even convicted. He did not lie. He did not falter (like what Modi did to Sohrabuddin). That brought him more public support. When Hitler spoke he did not hide his contempt for Jews, and neither did he hide his agenda on how he is going to take care of Jewish Problem. Still, the people of Germany who were surrounded by weak-hearted and corrupt leaders who would collude and make marriages of convenience just to be in power, voted this man to power because they thought he would at least tell them what he does and what he intends to do, honestly.

While some observers of the early twentieth century spelt doom on the rise of Nazis in Germany, many other politicians (in Germany and outside), weak at heart, diffident, and completely involved in their petty politics underestimated the rise of Hitler (read, Congress and the Left). They thought he was a tiny figure who will be swept away very soon. That never happened. They kept giving into his demands. He fed on that support and mass hysteria and became a megalomaniac who plunged the whole world into its greatest war which ended up killing more than 50 million people in less than ten years.

Modi is on the rise in India. It is not a good sign. It bolsters and gives support to other elements that harbor similar thoughts in India. Hindutva forces already talk about emulating and replicating Gujarat in other states of India. People explain his win as a mandate of people. That’s a sorry state of affairs. What if a majority of Indians vote to kill all the minorities in one stroke, will we accept that mandate? Is law of the land and our constitution subservient to people’s mandate? We have a skewed and distorted view of what it means to be a democracy.

Indians have not learned to draw the line between what is acceptable and what is not. Here, in Gujarat, we have blurred those lines. We have legitimized crime that targets certain people based on their identity. The future is bleak. All this economic prosperity is not going to save us. Instead, this prosperity will only fuel such hatred to take it to the next level, where state participates in marginalizing, demonizing and then targeting of certain identities

Sources – (http://sujaiblog.blogspot.com)

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