Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Autonomous CBI ! My foot

In outlining the path to make the CBI autonomous, in accordance with the Supreme Court judgment in Vineet Narain case, and the recent judicial reprimand of the government for making the agency “a caged parrot with many masters”, the empowered Group of Ministers (GoM) must do tightrope walking—but walk it must.
It has moved very little so far since a Bench led by the late Justice J. S. Verma drew in the 1990’s a roadmap to keep CBI insulated from political interference. The CBI directors get two years fixed tenure; report to CVC for overseeing and certain cosmetic changes. But since then, corruption in public life has acquired gigantic proportions. From highway, it has spilled into every alleyway. But CBI, which flaunts the motto of “Industry, Impartiality, Integrity”, has shown huge deficit on all the three counts.

Monday, May 20, 2013

The Left Foot and the Right Foot

So, what is the shindig really about? Well, we’re talking about the nine-year-old wonder, the diarchy that rules India, between Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Wait a second. Is the country really being ruled “between” them? Is it like the once-popular sitar and sarod duet, the “jugalbandi”, with both calling the tune, literally? Or is it an unequal music, the typical Indian solo recital, in which the percussionist or the veen follow  the lead player, unless in very rare cases. Between Sonia and Manmohan, who has the edge? The jury is out, but it is no doubt a ticklish issue in political management of a nation of 1.2 billion people.

Ever since Sonia positioned the every-inch un-politician-like Manmohan Singh onto the Prime Minister’s seat—herself being in a corner from where she could drive the government from the back seat—there has been endless speculation on whether the system would work. And yet it has worked, completing nine years on this very day.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

SC blow to CAG

In a virtual reversal of its earlier judgments, the apex court gave a jolt to CAG Vinod Rai by rejecting his Rs one lakh crore “national loss” philosophy in the Cairn-Vedanta deal. The judgment largely went unreported in the National Media and TV channels 

The problem with moral crusade against corruption is that it makes some of the crusaders blind to the legal nuances of the evils they are fighting. Too ready to cry “off with their heads”, they have little patience to hear the defense argument, or to double-check the prosecution’s logic. Finally, it is left to a constitutional authority, like the Supreme Court, to put a brake on the crusaders’ zeal.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

UP is crime Capital of India not Delhi

Don’t cross Delhi Border and set shop in UP. Criminal gangs with full protection of political masters are reaping the harvest in police uniform.
The depth to which a state can descend under gangsters’ rule is best evident in Uttar Pradesh, where crime is everyday occupation of a good many people, and punishment, if any, is merely subject to the criminal’s political connections. With a party of criminals, now in power, extortionists and kidnap gangs spare none, and the police often are a party in the loot. Throughout the state, the criminal law has become a dead letter.