Sunday, September 30, 2012


though penetrating
it was
gradually wiped out.
Wounds though deep
like a thorn thrust deep into the skin
gradually healed.
Only the scars are
left behind
which would continue
to be there like memorials built on the
floor of mind
throughout one’s life
till he/she is
consigned to ashes.
Wounds will pierce you again
pain, excruciating pain
will make you convulse
bringing tear-streams
flowing through your cheeks.
Don’t worry
the great healer of time
is always there
to heal your wounds
by applying the soothing
balm of solace.
But the scars will
continue to be there
like memorials
till the moment
you breath your last
and consigned to ashes.
One’s life
be, he/she
rich or poor
could be called
a scarred - life.               


Red-hot lava of anger, protest and consequent violence are manifesting across different parts of the world by a section of Muslims after an anti-Islam film ‘Innocence of Islam’ was released in US. The film directed by an Israeli-American film-maker Sam Bacille was allegedly portraying Prophet Muhammed in poor light. Ever since the reports of the film flowed across the nations the Muslims who always hold the Prophet with reverence and devotion got indignant - their religious sentiments badly wounded and with their blood boiling in their veins, came out into the streets in lakhs, perpetrated violence, ventillated their anger against the US, European and Latin American properties, launched attacks on the embassies and other institutions, in the process many westerners were done to death ranging from Ambassadors and other diplomatic officials in several nations especially Muslim nations. The violence manifested in its crude form first in Libya where Muslims including the militant outfits unleashed a gruesome attack on the Embassy by setting it afire. Consequently, US Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and three other US officials were asphyxiated to death which drew shock, apprehension and indignation from across different nations of the world. Anticipating further attacks on their institutions and their people wide security covers were provided to the embassies in Afghanistan, Pakistan and such other nations where the irate muslims wreaked maximum destruction of properties and officials.
Islamists are very sensitive with regard to their religion since centuries and anyone hurting their religious sentiments, even mildly, be he a Muslim, will take it seriously and see that one who wounds their religious sentiments is done away with by stoning him to death, by beheading him or by hanging him to death in public reminding one of the Middle Ages. Salman Rushdie, the well-known writer after publishing his novel ‘Satanic Verses’ even after more than thirty years is still spending his days with a tight security cover around him. The ‘Fatwa’ issued by the then religious Supremo Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini is still ‘in force’. It is to be noted that Salman Rushdie himself is a Muslim. Denigrating Prophet through print, audio-visual and electronic media is a serious crime far worse when compared with men belonging to other religions showing Prophet Muhammed in bad taste. ‘Satanic Verses’ is even now banned in India, Rushdie’s home country, fearing reprisals from muslim citizens.
A few years back a Danish cartoonist, Kurt Westergaard portrayed Prophet Muhammed in poor taste which was published in the paper Jyllands Posten of which he was a staff cartoonist, created an uproar among the Muslims across the world. The paper stood by its stand citing freedom of expression, but the cartoonist had to go into hiding and many futile attempts were unleashed by the Muslim outfits to destroy the Newspaper establishment and murder him.
Similar attempts at injuring the religious sentiments of Islamists were made in various countries by setting ablaze Holy book of Islam – Quran or by urinating on it in public by the people of Western nations. All such attempts invited the severe wrath of Muslims resulting in murders and widespread violence across the world.
Now that Islamophobia, a racist term coined by certain people has come into use like ‘Anti-semitism’ which was already in vogue.
Recently on the sidelines of United Nations General Assembly meeting, a meeting of Organisation of Islamic Co-operation (OIC) was held under the sponsorship of Pakistan. All Islamic countries were unanimous in their view that the US, European and Latin American nations nurturing Islamophobia was detrimental to religious harmony and adopted a resolution opposing discrimination, stigmatization, religious hatred etc. Those who had gathered pointed out, the western nations were/are actually mis-utilizing freedom of expression and this tendency has to be stopped once and for all. OIC reminded the Western nations not to distort the meaning of freedom of speech and expression which is only a pretext according to them called for putting an end to this deadly game of denigrating the Islam religion.
Responding to the condemnation and show of protest Barrack Obama, US President while condemning the film ‘Innocence of Islam’ didn’t cow down to the OIC’s demand to curtail the freedom of free speech and expression and made it clear that his govt wouldn’t restrain the cartoonists, writers or journalists from expressing their views independently on anything under the sun, US being a democratic country.
Obama’s statement sends a clear message to all, especially Islamic countries that the animosity is yet to continue as both OIC and Western nations are bent upon standing by their views.

Saturday, September 15, 2012


Floods of thoughts
flow to the reservoir
of mind
keeping no pattern.
The reservoir of mind
is so vast and deep that
no threat of the
floods of thoughts
crossing the danger mark.
Such is the capacity
of the reservoir of mind
that it never gets
filled up
never, ever…..


Dr.ManMohan Singh, Prime Minister of India, while holding a prestigious post in World Bank in the capacity of an economist was hijacked from NewYork, US, by late Prime Minister P.V.Narasimha Rao keeping in mind an aim to boost the Indian Economy by initiating innovative measures, appointed Dr.Singh as the Finance Minister of India in 1991. Narasimha Rao, the Chanakya of Indian politics in a one- -on-one meeting with Dr.Singh impressed upon the latter, the need for rescuing the ailing Indian economy, the need for bidding a farewell to the ‘outdated economic paths’ followed by various govts in the past and advised Dr.Singh to bring in neo-liberal reforms to give a new face-lift to the Indian economy. An obliging ManMohan Singh in his capacity as the new Finance Minister shook his head in agreement with Rao and right away took up the responsibility of opening up the economy to attract Foreign Direct Investments in various fields and initiated neo-liberal measures which was the staple diet across US and European nations, then.
Dr.Singh’s first budget was an example of giving a new direction to the economy and in his budget speech he dwelt upon the urgent necessity of opening up the economy to Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) and also adopting innovative measures to bring in economic growth. The grapevine is that upon taking up his post as Finance Minister, he prepared a draft of the budget which was the replication of the old models followed by the former govts and with a purpose of meeting the Prime Minister he sought an appointment with Mr.Rao and placed before him the budget proposals for his scrutiny. On going through the draft budget proposals, Rao reportedly turned furious and threw it away and asserted that what he wanted was an innovative budget which could attract the investors in large numbers, both Indian and foreign investors through the new economic reforms dispensing with the license raj and other road blocks which according to him were redundant in the global economic scenario. Dr. Singh had to draft a new budget the essence of which was neo-liberal measures and FDI investments on a vast scale with no strings attached.
While presenting his first budget before Parliament, of course, with the concurrence of the then PM, he dwelt on the need for introducing new measures aiming high growth trajectory. Dr.Singh while presenting his first budget before Parliament never forgot to mention his intention to lift the poor people at the bottom of the social ladder and that reference must have been to draw applause from the MPs especially those in the treasury benches. On the contrary, he never cared to cater to the needs of the poor as also 70 percent of Indian farmers who feed India by slogging out in the vast fields from morning to evening under the scorching sun. He always took care to encourage the Corporates and business tycoons who constitute only a minority.  He announced economic incentives to the Corporates, both Indian and foreign industrialists and business tycoons. As a result, while the Corporates got fattened day by day those at the lower strata of the society continued to suffer due to large-scale poverty, famine, mal-nourishment, unemployment, scarcity of pure drinking water, lack of sanitation facilities, millions pulling on across the nations with no covers over their heads, the enslavement of women and children roaming thru the streets with begging bowls while children of their age – those hailing from well-to-do families marched to their schools in uniforms. Put it in a nutshell, the much trumpeted neo-liberal reforms and globalization while provided a bonanza to those at the upper ladder of the society with them benefitting much, the middle-class, the farmers and the down-trodden, drifted to the abyss of suffering days. In other words, the rich became richer and the poor, poorer. While the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) signaled an upward growth the conditions of middle-class, farmers and the poor remained grim. Dr.Singh’s theory that with the economy scaling heights, through the trickle-down effect was bound to benefit those at the bottom level was a blunder. What the poor benefitted was nothing.
As a consequence of which in the General Elections held after five years, the Congress and its allies were voted out of power. Those took charge after that were short-lived.
In 1998, National Democratic Alliance (NDA) under BJP which was led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee occupied the saddle and contrary to what they preached, what they practised was to follow the path of Narasimha Rao govt and as a result the Corporates turned millionaires and billionaires while the down-trodden continued to be down-trodden. After six years of rule, with high voltage publicity campaign through print and electronic media, the NDA alliance fought the elections and emerged a cropper. The ‘shining India’ slogan had no takers as it was a ‘suffering India’ the electorate witnessed as termed by CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury.
UPA had to wait till 2004 to assume power at the Centre again, its outlook but not changed for the better. But to continue in power UPA alliance was forced to seek the support of LDF(Left Democratic Front) which was on a stronger wicket then with 61 MPs at its command. The CPI(M) and its allies by arm-twisting the UPA govt led by none other than Dr.ManMohan Singh forced him to take initiative to cater to the needs of the poor, middle-class and farmers. Some welcome steps like MGNREGP (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme) and certain pro-poor reforms were implemented.
Now that UPA-2 is in the saddle which was catapulted to power due to the implementation of pro-poor reforms as demanded by the LDF (Left Democratic Front) which fell out with the UPA alliance on the controversial issue of Civil Nuclear Bill signed by the then US President George Bush and Dr.ManMohan Singh. UPA-2 govt have chosen the path of initiating neo-liberal reforms vigorously, more vigorously and on Friday Dr.ManMohan Singh after dithering for a while declared 51 percent investment in Foreign multi-brand retail and 100 percent investment in single-brand retail sector. It further declared 49 percent FDI investment in civil aviation sector. Besides all these, Dr.Singh has declared his intention of mopping up Rs.15000 crores by disinvesting some profit-making public sector under-takings to reduce the fiscal deficit, all these amidst the threat of withdrawal of support by Trinamool Congress led by Mamata Banerji and the widespread protests of Left Democratic  parties.
In the event of allowing FDI investments in multi-brand retail sector and single-brand retail outlets, lakhs of Indian small-scale retailers are certain to go down the drain. It is better to remember that 2014 is not far away. It is quite painful that be it a UPA govt or a BJP govt the path followed by both are the same and with the Left Democratic Front conspicuous by its inability to choose a different path due to its decline at the national level.

Friday, September 14, 2012


In the college campus
love-birds they were
love was so intense that
to remain separate
at least for a short span
was agonizing to them.
They got married later
their harmony was such that
for each problem both of them confronted
they used the same calculator
adopted the same formula
got the same answer.
With the passage of time
they became two parallel lines.
Though they used the same calculator
adopted the same formula for each problem
they confronted
alas, the solutions they arrived at
turned out to be different.
that forced them to introspect
came to the conclusion that
the distance between them
had lengthened too far.
That made them
approach the family court
with divorce papers.  


With civil war in Syria raging on with no sign of abetment to the bloodshed, frantic efforts are on to bring an end to genocide which is eating into the vitals of a country which was running ‘smoothly’ under the leadership of Dr.Bashar Al Assad,  -  somewhat  ‘smoothly’ in the sense that in spite of problems like poverty, corruption, unemployment and ethnic conflicts, under the strict authoritarian rule of Dr.Assad the people are spending their days suffering all these evils silently. They were waiting for an opportunity to let loose their anger, rage and protests. Dr.Assad like his father Hafiz Ali Assad is a dictator like other dictators across the world, is ruling the country with a powerful army at his disposal. He never allowed the masses to vent their anger and protests and such protests were nipped in the bud itself by brutal means.
Hence the masses, though angry and discontent, suppressed their animosity towards the Assad govt and were pulling on enduring silently. Patience has its limits and when one reaches the nadir of their patience he/she will dare to resist the tormentor with their backs to the wall.
While impatiently waiting for an opportunity since a prolonged time, a God-send opportunity came their way in the form of Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia followed by Egypt and Libya which spread like wild-fire across North African countries. If a ruthless dictator like Col.Muammar Quadhafi who treated Libya like his personal fiefdom for more than four decades suppressing brutally even a small sign of protests by some groups and if a dictator like Hosni Mubarak ruled his country for more than three decades with a strong army at his command, none dared to take on him fearing for his/her life, meekly suffered the widespread poverty, rampant corruption and massive unemployment, could be fought against and ousted from their ‘thrones’ by the might of the masses, the Syrian rebels too drawing inspiration from the fall of two powerful dictators asked themselves why couldn’t they take on the dictator Dr.Assad like the masses of Tunisa, Libya and Egypt. The Syrian protestors grouped under one umbrella and began their protests in right earnest against the regime which later turned violent, the reason being Dr.Assad’s intolerance and efforts to brutally suppress the movement of the rebels and with the two sides unwilling to back down, the situation aggravated with the passage of days, weeks, months, even a year and more.
What Syria witnessed and still witnesses are hundreds losing their lives on both sides on a daily basis and the death toll has almost reached 30,000. Kofi Annan, former UN Secretary General, UN-Arab envoy entered the scene and formulated a six point formula, presented it before both, but his efforts, tireless efforts so to say, turned infructuous. At last finding no way to bring both sides around the negotiating table, as both sides stuck to their stands Annan conceded his mission was destined to be defeated, tendered his resignation.
Later another envoy who is a well-known mediator, Lakhdar Brahmi has entered the scene, but nothing has been heard from him so far.
With Russia and China on one side – (they are Syrian Allies) – and US, Britain and France on the other side – (they are supporting the rebels) - at loggerheads, no solution to the burning issue is in sight and the civil war is raging on. 
At a critical juncture like this, keeping with them an ardent desire to find a lasting solution, the rulers of regional nations Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iran and Iraq have entered the scene and they are meeting at Cairo, the Egyptian capital. Mohammed Morsi, the incumbent President of Egypt took the initiative to bring these countries to sit around a table and discuss the modalties to reach a permanent solution to the ongoing genocide. It is to be noted that while Saudi Arabia, a nation with Sunni majority has come forward to sit with Iran and Iraq, two Shia majority countries, Turkey is taking part in the ongoing discussion in its capacity as a neighbouring nation. Thus the four regional entities have taken the initiative to discuss Syrian imbroglio keeping away from the five permanent members in the UN Security Council.
In a sense, regional nations coming to the fore to arrive at a formula is a welcome step in the right direction. The five permanent members in the Security Council have not been able to dwell on the warring factions to make a climb down from their stated positions due to the wrangling prevailing among themselves. Furthermore, it is the need of the neighbouring nations, the regional powers to bring peace to their neighbouring country, thus keeping the entire West Asia peaceful and tension-free.     

Thursday, September 13, 2012


Freedom unlimited
not a caged-bird
but a free-bird.
not a slapped one
but self-imposed.
never a pestering insect
but always to enjoy.
Solitude is never bitter
but always sweet.
Book, newspapers, magazines
all my friends
tell me different stories
converse with me
time thus flows fast
like river Tiesta
as long as you are there
throwing your eyes to me
through the window of my memories
telling thousands of love
life to me is beautiful
though confined within
four walls round the clock
this life to me is beautiful.            


With the ouster and subsequent assassination of Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi, no one had expected Libya was at last liberated and that a people-friendly democratic regime would take over power which would change the atmosphere for the better. Even while fighting unitedly against the authoritarian regime, no one felt like thinking or worrying about the future of the nation after doing away with Gaddafi’s regime. The peace-loving citizens across the country might have dreamt of a golden future about to embrace them soon. International observers and experts on Libya had foreseen a chaotic atmosphere prevailing across the country as a result of the revolution. Their assumptions didn’t go wrong as their calculations were based on certain ground realties.
Libya under Gaddafi’s rule for more than forty years had experienced much hardships and sufferings like poverty, unemployment and loss of freedom, all unbearable and as a result got disillusioned, frustrated and discontented. The citizens had not mustered enough courage to fight against a formidable, wicked and wily ruler as he with an iron-fist could easily suppress all protests and could rule the country as per his whims and fancies. Like majority of malevolent dictators he too led a royal life flanked by heavy security and a powerful army always at his command. And to fight against his regime, none came to the front to lead the people and inspire them to fight against the autocratic regime. The entire nation and its citizens were in a state of constant fear and paranoia and were forced to subjugate themselves to the dictates of the iron-fisted ruler.
The Jasmine Revolution which first broke out in Tunisia, led to the ouster of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who was also ruling the nation like an autocrat. The sign of first resistance and the victory of people over a North African country like Tunisia inspired the repressed citizens of other African countries. The inspiring news about the ouster of Tunisian ruler spread to Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, even Saudi Arabia and the world as a whole. But after Tunisia, the protests against the Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak who ruled like a king for more than three decades suppressing freedom and pushing the country into the ditch of poverty, corruption, unemployment et al made the people restive and angry and they were emboldened to unitedly fight against his regime drawing inspiration from the Jasmine Revolution. With much determination and confidence, the arrogant dictator directed his powerful army to suppress the agitation at all costs. The fighters gathered at Tahrir Square in lakhs and raised slogans against the wicked rule of Mubarak in spite of suffering heavy loss of lives on their side. They stuck to their stand and the angry crowds fought against the army with might and determination forcing the latter to concede defeat. Mubarak was dethroned and imprisoned and a temporary regime was installed as an interim arrangement till country-wide elections were held and a new regime installed. The rest is history.
After the fall of Tunisian and Egyptian dictators, the Libyan and Yemenese people drew courage to put an end to the rule of Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi and Yemenese ruler Ali Abdullah Saleh. Gaddafi in the beginning took the situation silly as he was that much confident of suppressing the protesters easily by his powerful militia. Thousands perished as a result and suffered major setbacks. The rebellion lasted a fairly long time and UN tried to intervene to bring an end to the rebellions as thousands were martyred but to no avail. As a result a resolution 1973 was passed in UN and sanctioned the establishment of a ‘no-fly-zone’ and other measures to protect the civilians. US and NATO forces with a purpose to end the blood-shed decided to arm the protesters and later took the decision to deploy their armies to fight against the dictator. Large-scale bombardments took place and the continuous pounding by the NATO forces led to heavy casualties among the Libyan militia which gradually eroded the strength and confidence of Libyan autocrat. Still he held the ground as far as he could and with the large-scale losses on his side, he too went into hiding to escape the clutches of emboldened rebels. With all escape routes closed he made a last ditch effort to hide inside a tunnel but could not escape from the eyes of the fighters hunting for him and consequently he was pulled out of the tunnel and was ruthlessly lynched. Thus came the end of an era and an era of nightmare. People went euphoric and celebrated victory for days.
Libya is a nation with more than 300 ethnic communities and after the country escaping from the iron-grip of a dictator as observers had foreseen ethnic conflicts and clashes were the result though elections were conducted and an Islamist govt took over power later. In addition to the ethnic problems getting worse terror elements sneaked into the country which made a mess of everything.
With days passing by, with uneasy calm prevailing in the atmosphere, US Embassy at Benghazi came under attack by a mob and a terrorist outfit Al-Sharia set ablaze the Embassy resulting in American Ambassador to US Christopher Stevens asphyxiated to death the previous day. The attack was in protest against a film ‘The Innocence of Muslims’ by an Israeli-US film-maker named Sam Bacile portraying Prophet Mohammad in bad light. Besides Christopher Stevens, three other US officials also succumbed to death which shocked the US as also the entire world
Now that terrorists attacked the American Embassy, security has been tightened around all US embassies across the world. Al-Sharia, later reportedly owned up responsibility for the attack on US Embassy in Libya.
Simultaneously, protesting against the showing of film, Egyptian protesters scaled the wall of US Embassy, tore the US flag and put up an Islamic banner in its place. Today also it is learned that a mob stormed the US Embassy in Yemen over the same issue.
Even after the ouster of a ruthless dictator Libya knows no peace with ethnic conflicts mounting and terror elements on the rampage with a namesake govt at the helm. All as foreseen by the international experts and observers.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


Sometimes she appears
before me with a
radiant smile
which would make me
happy and I never forget to
return a radiant smile at her.
At times the same she
makes her appearance
with tears streaming down
her cheeks
which makes me sad and gloomy.
Sometimes she comes with
an indifferent look
which makes me indifferent to
everyone and everything.
At other times
she makes her presence felt
bursting out laughing
as if she just heard
somebody cracking a joke.
Her different appearances
always lead me to
pen different stories
it all depends upon
her different appearances.


One week ago, Justice Siri Jagan, Honourable Justice of Kerala High- Court, reportedly asked the State govt to urgently consider regulating paddy land conversion in the State and in this connection, he made a sarcastic comment “if the situation is not controlled even God cannot save God's Own Country,” while commenting upon the piling up of land conversion cases. Close on the heels the Honourable Justice’s sarcastic comment, here comes ‘Emerging Kerala 2012’ with much pomp and pageantry in Cochin which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Dr.ManMohan Singh today. Industrialists and businessmen from 52 countries are active participants in the three day long jamboree. Besides foreign diplomats from these 52 countries are also taking part in the much publicized event.
GIM (Global Investor Meet) - 2003 under the initiative of the then UDF government which too was begun with much fanfare is still imprinted in each Keralite’s mind. In that meeting too thousands of foreign industrialists, business entrepreneurs besides industrialists and businessmen of India were present and a number of proposals were submitted by the former which later turned out to be a big failure as expected. Only one or two projects came into existence and the rest remained on paper only.
Now that United Democratic Front Government of Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and his colleague and Industries Minister P.K.Kunhalikutty ‘with an intense desire to build-up a shining Kerala’ after much discussions and deliberations have come out with a new initiative which has been christened ‘Emerging Kerala 2012’. On going through the 222 proposals, the Opposition LDF (Left Democratic Front) decided to boycott the meeting accusing the govt with nurturing a motive of encouraging real-estate business under the pretext of putting Kerala on the industrial map as an investor-friendly State. Besides the Opposition front, the environmental activists of Kerala who have founded Kerala Paristhithi Aikya Vedi too have expressed their reservations about the initiative and they have come out into the open against a number of projects as they are of the strong view that the govt initiative is likely to affect the social and environmental atmosphere in Kerala.
The environmentalists’ responses which are reported in newspapers in detail, citizens who go through the formers responses will be compelled to rethink about the viability of a number of proposed projects. One would find that there is substance in their expressing reservations as also objections.
The proposed Kochi-Palghat Investment and Manufacturing Zone, for example, is in need of 5200 hectares of land, 90 percent of which are paddy fields on both sides of the National Highway. In addition to it 4000 hectares of land are required to start Petroleum products, chemicals and Petro-Chemicals almost, a major part of which are wastelands and paddy fields.
Similarly to establish an Electronic Hub at Aamballur, forty hectares of land are needed.
Furthermore, in Wagamon in Idukki district, an area blessed with natural beauty, a golf club is about to be begin.
Another place is Nelliampathy in Palghat district, a lush green area where a forest lodge and Ayurveda centre – are included in the list of projects.
Environmentalists point out a fact that for the construction of  Cheemeni Hydro-electric Project, the area required for completing the project is not even specified.
According to the environmentalists like Prof.B.Sugathakumari, poet, social activist, environmentalist, Prof M.K.Prasad, an eminent environmentalist, Dr.R V G Menon, scientist and environmentalist, almost 5.66 lakh hectares of paddy fields have already been estimated to have lost in the name of developing industries, business centres and construction of flats since 1975.
Justice Siri Jagan while making comments about the large-scale leveling of paddy-fields reportedly pointed out, Kerala which is blessed with natural beauty, abundant resources and lush greenery has to transport vegetables on a large-scale from TamilNadu and Karnataka, our neighbours both of them compared to Kerala are not that much blessed with natural beauty and resources. If these two States can grow paddy and vegetables on a large-scale and can transport vegetables to Kerala after fulfilling their daily needs, why can’t a blessed State like Kerala grow paddy, vegetables and flowers – the latter too are vanishing from the sights of Keralites?
The honourbale Justice’s observations and comments are pertinent, to put it mildly.
If the trend goes on like this we are likely to lose our remaining paddy-fields, waste lands and other resources. Now that with ‘Emerging Kerala 2012’ going on in Kochi in full steam and if all the projects mentioned are about to be implemented by foreign and Indian investors, the already plundered Kerala is likely to be converted into a concrete jungle. With the implementation of Emerging Kerala 2012 – in case the projects are about to come to fruition, govt’s reported claims of no loss of lands are false and misleading. Environmentalists’ demands to govt to initiate positive actions in development of non-conventional energy, preservation of paddy-fields and waste lands and protection of water resources are the need of the hour.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


In this heartless
soul-less world
where stains of sins and
dark deeds
darkening the
walls of many a one’s mind
a periodical white-washing
is good idea
one’s true colour gets exposed.
And to hide the stains
of sins and other
dark deeds
from public view
as also to brighten
each one’s image
to remain a role-model
periodical white-washing
of the walls of minds is a must
with fast flow of time
the stains of sins and
other dark deeds
will stare at us again
like demons threatening
the children.
When each one believes
in periodical white-washing
of the walls of his/her mind
why the reluctance
on other’s side?

Monday, September 10, 2012


The path forward is
tarred, smooth, flowing
and endless.
It’s easy to walk
down the path
it’s easy to drive
down the path
nothing wrong in
feeling happy and
feeling elated.
We always dream about
such paths in life
we crave for walking
down the smooth, flowing paths.
------The path backward
might be thorny, stony and
It is tedious to tread
along the path,
it is tough to drive
along the path
none feels like walking
or driving along such paths.
In the daily life
we see persons
of two kinds
while scaling glorious
paths, one section
prefer not to look back.
They feel shame and irritation
while memories try to
walk backwards,
along such paths through which
they trode bare-footed once.
There are some others
while scaling heights
occasionally prefer
to look back
the thorny, stony, pot-holed paths
through which they trode
a part of life.
With much difficulty
suffering thirst, hunger, poverty
and unemployment
travelling down memory lane
make them humble
loving and caring
towards the ones
treading the harsh paths of life
which are stony, thorny
and pot-holed
feel sympathetic towards them
empathetic towards them
helpful towards them.           


Belated though, the decision of US govt to black-label the Pakistan- based Haqqani network is a welcome step in the right direction. The whole world must have been wondering why such a terror outfit after committing a chain of terror attacks in Afghanistan since a few years ranging from assassinations, kidnappings, suicide attacks targeting important landmarks causing a number of deaths and destruction of properties, most of the attacks were targeting US Embassy and its army, why the nation was keeping a low profile without branding the terror network in its black list. At last after two years of discussions, debates and deliberations US has finally decided to black-label it by including the terror network as one among the Foreign Terror Organisation (FTO). The responsibility to take an appropriate decision was left to US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton. The Democrats and Republicans in the US Congress were unanimous in their stand to take an immediate decision to black-label the Haqqani group. US govt upon taking into consideration the unanimous decision of the Congress members was forced to ignore its fragile relationship with Pakistan after the fateful drone attack killed about 28 Pak soldiers at Mohmand base. The consequent deterioration in their relationship led to US thinking over whether to take a drastic step of black-labeling the Haqqani network which keeps on maintaining a close connection with Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) agency of Pakistan. It is to be noted that soon after NATO forces killed 28 Pakistani soldiers, Pakistan govt directed the US to close its base in Mohmand forthwith and the latter was forced to close its base there. Later after tendering an apology by Hilary Clinton, Pakistan govt allowed the US to open its base at Mohmand. Still the relationship between the two nations was fraught with suspicions and apprehensions.
As already noted it was the Haqqani network behind the assassination of Burhanuddin Rabbani who turned a mediator between the Karzai govt and Taliban based in Afghanistan. Taliban’s enmity towards US and its allies and India which continues to play a positive role in the development of infrastructural facilities by building roads, hospitals, schools and a number of other such facilities badly needed by the war-ravaged Afghanistan, is notorious. The Haqqani network in order to put an obstacle in the path of normalization of relationships between Karzai govt and the Taliban played a behind the scene role of assassinating Burhanuddin Rabbani and with his assassination the ongoing peace process came to an abrupt halt. It was the same Haqqani group behind the assassination of Kandahar Governor Abdul Walikhan Karzai, President Hamid Karzai’s co-brother who was a well-known player in Afghan politics as also was acting as a bridge between US and Afghan govt. Mr.Wali Karzai was closely associated with US for a long time.
Chain of attacks continued unabated with the covert support of Pakistan which was behind the sponsoring of all attacks in Afghanistan. Pakistan with a view to play an active role in Afghanistan after the US and NATO forces withdraw from the country, with the connivance of Haqqani group led by Jalaludheen Haqqani holed up somewhere in the harsh terrains of North Waziristan along with his followers.
It was the same Haqqani network behind the attack on Indian Embassy causing large-scale destruction, it was the same Haqqani network which was behind attacking US Embassy by rockets, it was the same Haqqani network which was behind the attacks on Afghanistan’s elite International hotel and Serena hotel.
Their ultimate aim is to force the US and NATO forces and also the Indians involved in the reconstruction works led by skilled and unskilled workers like doctors, engineers, teachers and labourers out of Afghanistan. Behind all these terror attacks are Pakistan’s Intelligence Agency –ISI (Inter Services Intelligence) which provide funds and logistical support to the Haqqani group. As some experts pointed out the financial and logistical support extended by US govt to Pakistan are being utilized by the Pak govt to sponsor attacks against the US and NATO forces camping in Afghanistan.
Apprehending the threat of Pakistan turning out to be bitter enemy of US, the latter was vacillating over the decision to black-label the Haqqani group which owe allegiance or maintain a close rapport with Pakistan. At last domestic compulsions forced the Obama govt to include the dreaded network in the list of black-labeled terror organizations. Better late than never.

Sunday, September 9, 2012


No dearth of love
No dearth of care
No dearth of affection
children and grand children, though vie
with one another
to attend to her all needs
the old lady always feels like
a fish out of water
from the very day
she bid adieu to ancestral home
where she spent a major part of her life
with her better-half and children.
Then only she learned
the definition of
peace, tranquility and
delight and satisfaction.
Time never stands still
with the flow of time
changes naturally affected her life
his life and
children’s life.
She and her better-half
grew old
children married off
and got separated
one by one
each with his/her spouse
settled in different cities.
At last the old lady
and the old man left at home
both spent recalling their old days
the golden days and gradually
they learnt to live with
gnawing loneliness
still keeping happy
as her better-half
like a shadow was always with her.
But one day, like double whammy
unexpectedly, unpredictably
her better-half left to his heavenly abode
leaving her alone.
The children came
weeping all the way
and tried to console her,
the aged lady
still felt a void in her life
she couldn’t come to
terms with herself
and felt like he is always with her
he is everywhere
in the home and its premises.
He always visited her
in her dreams
which she mistook for real
that much harmony
existed between them throughout.
Children were unwilling
to leave the aged-lady alone
such an eventuality
was quite unthinkable to them.
All of them met
while she was in bed
recalling the precious
moments with him
heaving deep sighs frequently.
Children decided
let mother spend
alternately at each one’s house
each wanted her to be
happy always
each wanted her to be
satisfied with her life wherever she was.
Children’s decision was final.
Caressing her,
embracing her, consoling her
and they opened their
hearts to her,
her heart skipped a beat
she felt a lump in her throat
leaving him alone how could she
leave the home?
She felt helpless
She knew the predicament of her children
How could she leave him alone at home
he is alive and he is always with her
how could she leave him alone?
She saw his tearful eyes
she saw him leaning against the wall helplessly
watching her leaving him alone
she saw him waving his hands at her
and in a split-second
he vanished from her sight.
Tears ran down her wrinkled face
children consoled her
she looked back once more
her home like an orphan
seemed to be shedding tears
her daughter helped her
to enter the car
each one by one
waved to her
all in tears
the car started moving
she sat with closed eyes…


With Russia and China on one side, US and European nations on the other side, a full-blown Civil war has erupted in Syria with the ruling Bashar-Al-Assad govt on one side entering into an all out fight against forces loyal to the rebels, the Free Syrian Army resulting in the loss of lives of about 30,000 which include the forces loyal to the Syrian govt, forces loyal to the rebels and a number of civilians. Still, both sides are not willing to arrive at a solution to put an end to the genocide and the civil war is likely to last a long period. Kofi Annan, former UN Secretary General, as UN-Arab envoy though entered the scene with a six point formula to find a lasting solution to the ongoing bloodshed conceded his defeat and quit his post as mediator and in his place a reputed trouble shooter Lakhdar Brahmi has been chosen as the next mediator between two warring factions. No word is being heard from him so far, perhaps he might be on the look-out for an acceptable formula to the satisfaction of both sides. Whether he too might go the way of Kofi Annan without succeeding in his efforts to broker a peace agreement, it is premature to predict the outcome.
Now that France has come to the fore with the plan of supplying arms to the rebels and artillery support. Russia too has come to the fore which is an all weather ally of Syria with a warning that, actually what is essential at a critical situation like this is to find ways for a home grown solution without a regime change.
Vladimir Putin, Russian President is of the opinion that US and European forces rushing to the help of rebel forces will only help to aggravate the situation in Syria. His warning that the dreaded terrorist outfit Al-Qaeda’s fighters have already infiltrated to Syria to fight along with the rebel forces against the Assad govt that too with the covert support of US and European nations will contribute to the devastation of the already war-torn Syria. There is substance in his statement as in the event of Assad being dethroned with the active participation of the dreaded terrorist outfit, the consequences will be far beyond the imagination of even the rebel forces who fight for a regime change now. Once Al-Qaeda gaining the upper hand, the rebel forces of Syria will have to repent later. Putin must be recalling the involvement of Al-Qaeda elements under Osama Bin Laden who was generously provided with financial as well as logistical support to fight along with the Taliban elements to force the erstwhile Soviet Union out of Afghanistan in 1989. The same Al-Qaeda and its undisputed leader Osama later evolved into a ‘frankenstein monster’ with it turning against its former supporter US later, which was believed to have involved in the demolition of World Trade Centre the memory of which is still a nightmare to the Americans. That major terror attack was first of its kind against US which always boasts about being the undisputed Super Power of the world.
Mr.Putin while making his stand clear sarcastically advised the US to unlock the Guantanamo jail and force the Al-Qaeda elements to turn against Dr.Assad’s govt. America’s penchant for aligning with any force however dreaded it may be to protect its self-interest is infamous. Later the same forces are likely to turn against America - the hand that feeds these militants might be bitten by the latter itself, later - here it is America itself about which America must be knowing better. Still in its effort to settle scores with a prominent rival like Russia, US has no hesitation to ally with such elements whenever such a situation warrants. Here the prominent rival is not Syria but Russia which is considered as its traditional rival. Vladimir Putin here never forgets to make a statement with a sense of black humour, in the event of US unlocking Guantanamo and despatch the inmates who are supposed to be Al-Qaeda elements to fight against Syria govt, these freed elements might end up in another jail without delay.
Sometimes we feel, at present what is actually going on is an indirect fight between US and European nations jointly against Russia and China treating Syrian imbroglio as a pretext.
Free Syrian Army who had successfully captured Alleppo, the Financial Capital of Syria was later recaptured by the govt forces through a determined fight back lasting for days resulting in the loss of lives of almost five hundred. The rebel forces are now camping in Al-Rifast about 50 miles away from Alleppo. Now that with an intention to enable the rebel forces to consolidate its hold over captured areas, France has come to the fore with the offer of supplying arms to the rebels and if necessary artillery support.
Now that like in Libya, United Nations is poised to remain a mute spectator with both sides poised to proceed along with plans to settle scores with Syria remaining as a pretext. The whole world now looks forward to what positive role the new UN-Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahmi could play in the coming days to find a permanent solution to the persisting problem which is haunting Syria for the last seventeen months and more.

Saturday, September 8, 2012


I stopped watering my rose-plants
the very day you left me alone
after gifting me a spring season.
Every day I came to you
to gift a rose-flower
as a token of my intense
and irresistible love towards you.
Now that you have
left a vacuum in my life
I find my life crawling
like a snail.
Once, while you were a
part of my life
I used to smile to myself
closing the door of my room
and danced
like a peacock.
I thought you would   
never leave me alone
but destiny decided otherwise
now that the rose-plants
are gone
unable to withstand 
the torch of summer.
And I withdrew
into my own shell
where only the vacuum exists.
You might be recalling
those days
when we sat side by side
looking straight into
the eyes without blinking
till our eyes turned moist
you must be recalling
the moment when
our lips touched the first time in our life.
That moment is still
etched in my mind
I know you also keep
it for yourself
it was such a precious
hilarious moment in our life.


European Union’s (EU) economic woes continue unabated in spite of several steps taken by the European Union member countries. European Central Bank (ECB) in a bid to rescue Euro has adopted a new measure, which is first of its kind. By unlimited buying of treasury bonds from the most affected nations like Spain, Italy, Portugal, Greece, Ireland et al with a purpose to save them guaranteeing sovereign debts as per the decision announced by ECB President Mario Draghi. Though the prominent nation among the EU, Germany has strictly opposed the decision Mario Draghi has decided to implement the plan with the support extended by prominent EU nations like France.
Greece, in spite of fiscal stimulus sanctioned by EU nations twice is still reeling under the impact of economic recession. Now that Portugal has found itself in the debt trap in spite of adopting ‘austerity measures’ as demanded by the EU. The adoption of austerity measures by the Portugal govt has extensively affected the woes of its citizens and massive discontent and disillusionment are prevailing in the country. The prices of healthcare, transportation charges, electricity charges, most importantly the charges of food items have sky-rocketed and as a result the most adversely affected are children and elderly with large-scale poverty spread among them. With the adoption of austerity measures citizens especially the old men and women are at the receiving end. With the freezing of pensions, cut in social benefits, the decision to do away with pensions as part of expenditure cuts have adversely affected the citizens in Spain, Portugal, Greece etc. the elderly have found it very difficult to pull on in the twilight of life. According to a Portuguese journalist, Anna Navarro Pedro who is totally opposed to the austerity measures pointed out that such measures have adversely affected 40 percent of old men and women who are on the verge of death. Imagine the difficulties of these elder people in the sunset of their life – actually it is at this stage in their life that extreme care is needed - are undergoing ordeals with the younger members of their families treating them like slaves and ruthlessly assaulting them forcing them out of their families.
With unemployment rising alarmingly lakhs of youths have turned against the govt out of frustration, disappointment and indignation forcing them to undertake violent demonstrations. Govt’s decision of stopping the distribution of unemployment benefits has made their life a hell on earth. Likewise the steep cut in salary has resulted in lakhs of salaried class finding themselves caught in a web of economic woes and experiencing difficulties to make both ends meet.
The policy of adoption of austerity measures as part of expenditure cuts have virtually deprived the citizens of not only Portugal but the other similarly affected EU nations like Greece, Spain, Italy and Ireland undergoing the ordeal which cannot be expressed in words. Such is the intensity of sufferings they are subjected to – poverty, hunger, unemployment, stopping of social benefits, reduction of retirement age freezing of the pension to the retirees – all these steps have affected them badly.
Whether the decision to buy treasury bonds to save these countries from debt, a step taken by the European Central Bank would save the Euro from total collapse – we have to wait and see.