Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Gaza Conflict

I use to read Palestine, Israel, Jews, Arabs and war between them. I am embarrass to say I knew nothing about this before. Even when Gaza strike started I was quite ignorant about the facts and history. Since Israel started war in Gaza stripe I was wondering what is that this little country so aggressive about? As shown in media, why are the killing innocents. I wanted to know. I wanted to know what has triggered this conflict. What happened in past that made created this issue? I was searching on internet and then I came across an article on BBC which depicts the changes on world map since 1940's. So now I finally know, there is no country name Palestine since 1993 atleast.

Middle East conflict: History in maps

Palestine was among several former Ottoman territories placed under British control by the League of Nations. The mandate lasted from 1920 to 1948. In 1923, Britain granted limited autonomy to Transjordan, now known as Jordan.

The United Nations General Assembly proposed dividing Palestine into Jewish and Arab states, with Jerusalem as an international city. The plan was accepted by Jewish leaders but rejected by the Arabs and never implemented.

After Britain withdrew and the Jews declared the state of Israel, war broke out with neighbouring Arab nations. Eight months later an armistice line was agreed, establishing the West Bank and Gaza Strip under the control of Jordan and Egypt.

Israel made huge territorial gains in the Six-Day War. It captured the West Bank - including East Jerusalem - Gaza Strip, Golan Heights and the whole Sinai Peninsula. The Sinai was handed back to Egypt in the 1979 peace deal.

Since 1993 there have been several handovers of land to differing degrees of Palestinian control. Jewish settlers in Gaza were withdrawn in 2005 but the West Bank is still dotted with settlements and a controversial security barrier is being built there.

Satyam Bang....

Satyam chairman Mr. Ramalinga Raju, who made few disastrous decisions over last few weeks have not only taken down company only but have impacted more.

Satyam management which was always criticised by its employees (I know few guys from there) is receiving bash from all over now. After four of its independent CEO resigning last week and everyone looking forward to the board meeting on 10th, Satyam Chairman have dropped last straw. He admitted that he manipulated balance sheets of company, shown false figures and profit. Satyam's share which was trading at around Rs.600 months ago has been hit badly and now have tumbled to way below expectations to Rs.50. This is not good for the number 4 IT service company of India.

But its not only Satyam's share which is affected but it is credebility of Indian Company which is hit. All over world India is known for IT outsourcing. Years of hard work of many have earned reputation for this Industry and now it has been hit. Any foreign company before dealing with an Indian IT company will surely question it's credibility now.

Any company before outsourcing will surely want to know if it is safe with Indian company or not.... This is surely going to affect the business, market and Indian jobs. World bank, Merrylynch have already terminated their contracts with Satyam. Satyam management has set very wrong example but atleast it has opened the eyes proving that whatever is shown on saurface may not be real. Time to wake up and learn the reality.

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

One of the Best article I have read: "The Next World Order"

This article I received in email forward. This is one of the best article I have read on Bharat and our Cast system. All propaganda created by politicians about cast system not being good, dalits are being targeted is mere to take political mileage. No doubt there are problems in areas for lower casts but so is problem with upper casts in other areas. No one will try to put that forward and support upper casts as it seems taboo these days.

Read the mentioned article here and one of the comment on this article here. I am even pasting the article here for my collection.

The Next World Order

Published: January 1, 2009

New Delhi

CHINA and India are in a struggle for a top rung on the ladder of world power, but their approaches to the state and to power could not be more different.

Two days after last month’s terrorist attack on Mumbai, I met with a Chinese friend who was visiting India on business. He was shocked as much by the transparent and competitive minute-by-minute reporting of the attack by India’s dozens of news channels as by the ineffectual response of the government. He had seen a middle-class housewife on national television tell a reporter that the Indian commandos delayed in engaging the terrorists because they were too busy guarding political big shots. He asked how the woman could get away with such a statement.

I explained sarcasm resonates in a nation that is angry and disappointed with its politicians. My friend switched the subject to the poor condition of India’s roads, its dilapidated cities and the constant blackouts. Suddenly, he stopped and asked: “With all this, how did you become the second-fastest growing economy in the world? China’s leaders fear the day when India’s government will get its act together.”

The answer to his question may lie in a common saying among Indians that “our economy grows at night when the government is asleep.” As if to illustrate this, the Mumbai stock market rose in the period after the terrorist attacks. Two weeks later, in several state elections, incumbents were ousted over economic issues, not security.

All this baffled my Chinese friend, and undoubtedly many of his countrymen, whose own success story has been scripted by an efficient state. They are uneasy because their chief ally, Pakistan, is consistently linked to terrorism while across the border India’s economy keeps rising disdainfully. It puzzles them that the anger in India over the Mumbai attacks is directed against Indian politicians rather than Muslims or Pakistan.

The global financial crisis has definitely affected India’s growth, and it will be down to perhaps 7 percent this year from 8.7 percent in 2007. According to my friend, China is hurting even more. What really perplexes the Chinese, he said, is that scores of nations have engaged in the same sorts of economic reforms as India, so why is it that it’s the Indian economy that has become the developing world’s second best? The speed with which India is creating world-class companies is also a shock to the Chinese, whose corporate structure is based on state-owned and foreign companies.

I have no satisfactory explanation for all this, but I think it may have something to do with India’s much-reviled caste system. Vaishyas, members of the merchant caste, who have learned over generations how to accumulate capital, give the nation a competitive advantage. Classical liberals may be right in thinking that commerce is a natural trait, but it helps if there is a devoted group of risk-taking entrepreneurs around to take advantage of the opportunity. Not surprisingly, Vaishyas still dominate the Forbes list of Indian billionaires.

In a much-discussed magazine article last year, Lee Kwan Yew, the former prime minister of Singapore, raised an important question: Why does the rest of the world view China’s rise as a threat but India’s as a wonderful success story? The answer is that India is a vast, unwieldy, open democracy ruled by a coalition of 20 parties. It is evolving through a daily flow of ideas among the conservative forces of caste and religion, the liberals who dominate intellectual life, and the new forces of global capitalism.

The idea of becoming a military power in the 21st century embarrasses many Indians. This ambivalence goes beyond Mahatma Gandhi’s nonviolent struggle for India’s freedom, or even the Buddha’s message of peace. The skeptical Indian temper goes back to the 3,500-year-old “Nasadiya” verse of the Rig Veda, which meditates on the creation of the universe: “Who knows and who can say, whence it was born and whence came this creation? The gods are later than this world’s creation. Who knows then whence it first came into being?” When you have millions of gods, you cannot afford to be theologically narcissistic. It also makes you suspect power.

Both the Chinese and the Indians are convinced that their prosperity will only increase in the 21st century. In China it will be induced by the state; in India’s case, it may well happen despite the state. Indians expect to continue their relentless march toward a modern, democratic, market-based future. In this, terrorist attacks are a noisy, tragic, but ultimately futile sideshow.

However, Indians are painfully aware that they must reform their government bureaucracy, police and judiciary — institutions, paradoxically, they were so proud of a generation ago. When that happens, India may become formidable, a thought that undoubtedly worries China’s leaders.

Gurcharan Das is the author of “India Unbound.”