Jan Dhan - Inclusion or Fraud Facilitator?

Hailed as one that would lead to financial inclusion, Jan Dhan has become a device that facilitates fraud. 

Financial inclusion cannot come from allowing accounts to be opened in the name of the poor. It can only come from job creation and enabling poor to earn income with dignity, generate hope among the poor that their progeny would acquire learning and skills to come out of poverty. 

Here's a link to an article in 'Money Life' that describes a typical scam using Jan Dhan accounts.  

What is an Independent Judiciary?

Independent of whom? Of what?

In India, many (almost and fourth) members of Parliament have criminal cases registered against them. 

Should the executive which is selected from amongst these have any say at all in the selection and promotion of judges? 

In some countries, like the United States (of America), judges to the highest court are appointed by the excutive, the president or governors. They are political appointees and the judgements of the courts there do reflect the political bias of their patrons.

Should India follow suit? 

You decide.

Here is an article in 'Deccan Herald' (Bangalore edition) datelined 21 Aug 2016 titled, "No judges, no justice" that is relevant to the issue.

Refer Link


No judges, no justice

In the absence of any explanation from the Union government for not giving its assent to the 75 names recommended for appointment as high court judges, forwarded in February this year by the Chief Justice of India (CJI), one may presume that the Centre is not interested in processing the appointments quickly. Maybe, the government is unable to reconcile itself with the judgement striking down the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) Act and the 99th amendment to the Constitution last year. The government is yet to revise the Memorandum of Procedure (MoP) in consultation with the CJI and the Collegium. Media reports stated that the government wants to retain power to veto a recommendation on the grounds of national security.

Prohibition - The New Fad

It all started with election gimmicks, leading to electoral promises. It is premised on the rather foolish notion that women don't want the husbands to drink and hence parties that subscribe to prohibition will garner women's votes.

Prohibition has never worked anywhere except in fundamentalist religious countries, largely dictatorships of varying kinds. 

USA tried prohibition from 1920 (even amending the Constitution) to 1933 when the amendment was repealed. Prohibition was introduced in USA under pressure from relegious (pietist protestant groups). It was discarded as a result of the realisation that it led to large scale organised crime. (Who has not heard of Al Capone?). In general all types of crimes showed increased rates. Not only there was huge loss of government revenue, but also, additional cost of enforcing prohibition. 

Bismarck said, "Fools learn from experience. I learn from other's experience."

When Indian became independent many states introduced prohibition. It resulted in illicit liquor and deaths due to "hooch tragedies". Already such deaths have occured in Bihar. 

What would one call fools who refuse to learn from their own experiences? 

Instead of prohibition, The Fifth Estate would suggest that government legislate for companies engaged in the liquor business compulsorily set apart a specified sum of money, to be spent as part of their CSR activities in promoting responsible drinking, orgainse family counselling and de-addiction clinics. All liquor bottles may by law ordered to carry pictorial advertisements on the evils of drinking as in the case of ciggarettes.

In this context one may look at the irony of the juxtaposition of two news reports in the same newspaper today. 

'The Hindu' (22 Sep 2016, Bangalore edition) carried a news report on page 7, headlined, "Dance bars without liquor is absurd: Supreme Court"

The link to the article is here.

Just below it was another headline, "Plea in SC for nationwide ban on liquor"  

The link to the second news report is here.

Will good sense prevail?


UIDAI, The Deceit Continues

In an advertisement in the 'Deccan Herald' - Page 20 of its Bangalore Edition of 07 Aug 2016 - UIDAI says, "Aadhaar makes availing Government scholarships easy".

UIDAI's Misleading Advertisement on Scholarships

How diabolical can this be? UIDAI does not say, "Aadhaar is compulsory or mandatory for availing scholarships:, but says that it is "easy". 

And there is the smiling face of a girl child holding an "Aadhaar" acknowledgement letter. UIDAI has no scruples in using the innocent, ignorant (about UID / "Aadhaar") child to hoax the public and parents of these children.

Why does UIDAI want to link transferring of scholarships to bank accounts need linkage to the so-called "Aadhaar" number? What mystical powers does this number have?

Scholarships are meant for eligible students. Possession of UID / "Aadhaar" number, which is not even proof of citizenship, does NOT make a student eligible for scholarships.

Addresses in UID database are un-verified. Possession of UID / "Aadhaar" number does not prove that the its possessor is a genuine student of any instutution.