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Friday, July 31, 2009

Arun Gandhi: Non violence in the age of terrorism

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Sharing simple yet powerfual thoughts of Mr. Arun Gandhi ( grandson of Gandhi ji) about relevance and more wide and core meaning of non violence and how it can help us counter terrorim.

This is one of the most powerful speeches of recent times, I have seen and heard. The principle of non violence is not new to this world. Every religion teaches non violence as the way of life and thats what Gandhi Ji reminded us. Mr. Arun Gandhi shares interesting ancedotes on how small events shaped his life and firmed his belief about non violence.

The 'war against terrorism' has failed to achieve the ends. As Mr. Arun Gandhi points out, the war never was and cannot be solution to any problem. It will only augment it. The solution lies in peace, non violence and tolerance. Mindless killing and reckless war will only increase the rage and hatred in the heart of fundamentalists, who are hell bent on proving their point. By killing a few of them today might reduce the visible number of terrorists in near future, but after few years somebody else will come and will spread the hatred, terrorism once again. We simply cannot remove the hatred by hatred, we cannot win a war against another war. We must develop the tolerance towards other point of view which might be diametrically oppposite to our, we must learn to co exist in peace. 

Violence is simply not the solution to Terrorism. Wars do not address the root cause of the problem. It just superficially cure the symptoms, in a very expensive manner that too temporarily. The undercurrent, the real reason for which people hate each other and carry out such heinous crimes at large scale. The only community benefitting out of this is defence contractors, suppliers who are supplying these weapons, arms and ammunitions to these fundamentalists and government both.

Its time for politicians and global leaders from around the globe to retrospect and to understand the power of non violence. I think even if all nations from around the globe pledge to spend 1 full year of non violence and tolerance, several lives can be saved, billions of dollars can be saved which can be channelized in welfare programs and perhaps the root cause of terrorism can be solved for ever.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Bandra Worli Sea Link - A moment of Pride or Retrospection ?

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Finally after 10 years of wait and almost 2 decades of planning 1650 Crores ( 350 M USD) and incomprehensible indirect expenditure of time and money by several bureaucrats, politicians, babus the much awaited Bandra Worli Seak link was inaugurated on 28th June 2009. The bridge extends 5 Kms and is definitely one of the rare landmarks created in and by modern India.

On contrasting this with 2 of the recently completed projects in China, all efforts gone into creating this bridge looks dwarf. While we can always pat on our back and dont care about critics and cynics we also need to understand the difference between confidence and complacency. Its not about the mad race which world likes to watch and enjoy between India and China, its about our dreams and ambitions as a nation, efficiency and transparency, accountability and ability to learn from mistakes.

The travesty of Indian political system lies in the fact everybody is afraid, afraid to ask questions, afraid to take sincere action and instead raise mundanest issues which nobody cares about -

The opposition is more worried about the naming the bridge after Rajiv Gandhi rather than XYZ or Miachel Jackson. This reaffirms the common man belief that - they are all alike !!

A quick comparison of some of the world's longest bridges can be found here -

We as a nation has long way to go be it creating basic infrastructure or as a truely democractic nation ( rather than hippocractically Democratic or Democracy of convinience)