Indian Interests

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Sanku
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Sanku » 23 Jul 2009 16:05

shravan wrote:I interjected, “not only Uşā Sūktas professor, the entire Rgveda. Some of it could never be surpassed, such as the Nāsdīya Sūkta, with such expression as tama āsīt tamasā gūlhmagre, darkness was entrapped within darkness.


Beautiful. Beautiful. Beautiful.

NRao
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby NRao » 23 Jul 2009 18:53

A new dimension to "Indian Interest":

India opens door to foreign universities

India faces an enormous challenge to provide education to young people, many in remote locations. By some estimates, the country needs to build 1,500 universities over the next five years to equip enough -people with the skills to sustain rapid growth in Asia's third-largest economy.

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby svinayak » 23 Jul 2009 19:26

shravan wrote:Witzel conference on Rigveda in Delhi a farce

Witzel needs an introduction: Witzel calls himself a ‘well-known scientist’ in press releases about his trips. In fact, he is a church agent, more specifically from Dalit Freedom Network of Colorado church (proved in the CAPEEM california textbook trial).

Witzel has admitted that he and his cohorts were part of White Nationalist Church in USA and in contact with one or more of Fetna's members in the California textbook (Harvard Donkey Trial) matter, just as with many other Indians/NRIs and members of many other Indian organizations. FETNA is a front for LTTE. It is extraordinary that a Harvard academic should be associating with members of such an organization. FETNA in their letter of Feb. 19, 2006 to California State Board of Education wrote thanking Witzel for the efforts in proposing edits in pursuance of the Colorado evangelical church agenda, denigrating the hindu heritage to promote Japhetic biblical creationism theories and to achieve conversions of poor people dubbed 'dalits' by the church.

Nobody is asking the question why is such a person a chair of sanskrit studies and Indian studies. He even gave a lecture to Pakis on this topic who seem to be interested. Nobody wants to know about this.

The network which supports such people is vast and can be found among EJ groups, Muslim groups, supramacist group and have a vested interest in keeping the current myths and image of Hinduism in the western world.
They fund each other and support each other.

ramana
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 24 Jul 2009 00:22

Astal, If you dont mind lekin, 'selective' takes the edge of the fraud that is perpetuated by cronyism. I did put in lot of thought into coming up with it and atleast one person reacted as I expected and posted his response.

Yayavar
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Yayavar » 24 Jul 2009 00:45

[quote="shravan"]Witzel conference on Rigveda in Delhi a farce
/quote]

So Witzel holds fort in his own mailing list (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Indo-Eura ... sage/12741) and Bhagwan Singh on vijayavaani.com. Shadow boxing :).

The sad thing is Witzel still gets invited to these conferences in India to share his opinion....he should be ignored. I guess that will take time.

ramana
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 24 Jul 2009 00:50

No-No. I liked the jhapad that Mrs Kapila Vatsayan gave. He will remember that for a long time. If he wasnt invited, he never would have got that being safe in his ivory tower.

I wonder if Kaushal had invited her to the History conf in January 2009?

But serioously one should think as to why he is so persistent even after colonialism is dead and there is no need to persist with the AIT. Something deeper is there to feed this quest. Guy doesnt know Sanskrit or anything yet he is PRof of Ancient Indian Studies at Harvard. Dal sab kuch kala hain!

Gerard
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Gerard » 24 Jul 2009 01:03

Guy doesnt know Sanskrit or anything yet he is PRof of Ancient Indian Studies at Harvard.


Post-WW2 India simply wasn't 'sexy' enough to attract the best and brightest. While the likes of Condi Rice studied Russia, the third rate detritus of academia were left alone to monopolize 'South Asian' studies. Probably the same wrt "Ancient Indian Studies".

Prem
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Prem » 24 Jul 2009 01:12

Good to know Wiesel was whipped by woman of Gargi lineage . To know about him is to know the company he keeps , especially his so called "Indian" companions.

NRao
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby NRao » 24 Jul 2009 01:24

Shravan,

I recall during the early 80s, an attempt by Harvard and IIRC Tokyo Universities to reconcile THEIR differences in how to pronounce Sanskrit words.

Neither one did not even think of Sanskrit pronunciations as they occurred in India to be the standard.

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Yayavar » 24 Jul 2009 02:00

ramana wrote:No-No. I liked the jhapad that Mrs Kapila Vatsayan gave. He will remember that for a long time. If he wasnt invited, he never would have got that being safe in his ivory tower.



True, but then it needs to be more public. Public as in more of his peers internationally. Though there is good to have him shown to be hollow to the Indian crowd. Again it is not public enough -- it is not in ToI or Deccan herals or Dainik Jagaran afaik. If I bring it up among my friends here most will politely keep quite and mutter 'saffron' under their breath :). Hence my comment about 'shadow boxing' in their own worlds.

ramana
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 24 Jul 2009 02:05

So will those media outlets: TOIlet, Deccan Chronicle (INC owned) and what not(HIndue etc).

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Stan_Savljevic » 24 Jul 2009 18:22

MJ Akbar seems to be a different class to the rest of the scum that runs the circus.
Reform came because Indians wanted it, not because media wanted it. A substantial, if quiet, Indian achievement is that we have retained the best from our past and jettisoned, without any fuss, the worst. Compare this with a certain neighbour, which tends to invest in the worst and deny the best of its history and culture. Indians are sensible heirs. Just as other institutions have moved away from a certain pre-Partition ethos, so has AMU.

http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/n ... ?nid=98242

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ShibaPJ » 24 Jul 2009 20:25

I wanted to post this in the Indian hara-kiri @ SeS thread, but as that is locked now, posting here. Would like to know learned opinions on whether SeS is part of some deeply Chanakian move or if we could manage the fallout to India's advantage.

At first glance, SeS looked like an unmitigated disaster. I share the majority BRfites feeling that Indian interests were flushed down the toilet. From all the nitty-griitties that have since come out, it definitely seems that MMS moulded it that way and over-ruled SSM, and he has to take the boutique or brick-bats that come with it. It would be very interesting to see what raj-mata ordains, because whether I (or most Brfites) like it or not, Kangress party is ruling India at this critical juncture and have the reins for another 4 and 1/2 years. I wish, it was a nationalist larty/ leader (India-first) leading us, but then only if wishes were horses...

As we see the (intended/ unintended) consequences of this joint declaration, I would venture to say there are positives as well. Why should not we rejoice the fact that we are discussing Baluchistan bilaterally? Till date, Baluchistan has been a wholly internal Puki affair. PA has been committing genocide their for decades and India & international community have been mute spectators. Atleast now, it is on the table and India has a say in it, we can mould it in future to our interest. As a parallel, imagine GoI offering to discuss West Bengal, Chhatisgarh or Jharkhand with PRC or Unkil (Maoist issues). Next time, I would also like GoI to discuss NWFP, Sindh, Northern Areas as well. Let's discuss all Puki provinces with them, host and mould the provincial leaderships and have independent channels of communication with them parallel to Pakjabis. This would require effort and focus from GoI, a finely nuanced Puki (or Pukistan provincial) policy.

Coming back to GoI and someone to fine-tune GoI's Pukistan policy, I have a serious Q: who is the best GoI point-person to manage this? Someone who has both intricate knowledge of Pukis and is an India-firster? GP, SSM, Nirupama Rao, anyone else?

ramana
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 24 Jul 2009 20:45

From Nightwatch 23 July 2009 as a placeholder..

Special Note to New Analysts: Professionalism in Analysis.

This week, NightWatch was asked to give a presentation about professionalism to a group of foreign area experts. After consultation with brilliant, perceptive Readers who are genuine professionals (and who make a living in their professions), NightWatch crafted a presentation, parts of which are contained in this special note.

A young analyst can spend many years in service and never receive a satisfying, guiding or inspiring answer to the question, “what constitutes professionalism in intelligence analysis.” With even a cursory search, the analyst readily could find many words about analysis, analytical standards and certification requirements. Courses on analysis are everywhere now.

Nevertheless, the proliferation of words on these and related topics that NightWatch has reviewed do not come close to matching NightWatch’s now long experience. That is unfortunate.

They all miss the central point that people who work and make money in a profession understand. Besides, statements of goals and definitions ought to be written in simple declarative sentences in active voice using transitive verbs. Many words about foundational issues justifiably raise a suspicion that a writer does not understand what he is writing about.

Old timers owe you young or new analysts a concise answer that can help guide and empower your personal, professional development, even when institutional answers fall short.

Professionalism in intelligence analysis means sound judgment in applying specialized knowledge and experience to solving national security problems.

Professionalism always is about the soundness of judgment in applying knowledge and experience, not about the depth of knowledge, years of education or diversity of experience or even language skills. There are lots of well educated and experienced doctors, accountants, auto mechanics and attorneys in America today that no one should ever consult. Many speak more than one language.

Most professions have concluded that judgment cannot be taught, but can be learned with difficulty and mentoring. A young or new analyst should read and have in his professional library, Dr. Philip Tetlock’s seminal work, Expert Political Judgment. It is a scholarly, cautionary study about the dangers of intellectual hubris. It is a starting point for intellectual wisdom.

Judgment is a cognitive and sensory skill in drawing correct conclusions and making accurate predictions with incomplete information. It is vastly more sophisticated than a mathematical probability calculated by DARPA software.

“Sound” means consistent and dependably high accuracy.

In the NightWatch experience, the passing grade for sound judgment is 85% accuracy in every judgment made … ever. If an analyst cannot sustain 85% accuracy, his customers should consult the predictive market at strategypage.com, instead of him. Its members score 85% accuracy by guessing about the outcome of some 500 issues... consistently and dependably all the time. You can bet on it and they do!

The NightWatch standard is 90% accuracy in its predictive judgments, which it exceeds. It is higher than 90% in its causal, relational and diagnostic judgments. Feedback helps ensure those standards are maintained.

“Consistency” is often overlooked and undervalued. Patients go to doctors who have a reputation for curing illness and saving lives, not once but all the time. Most patients look for healers, more than education. They look at years in practice and results over time. Interestingly, some in the medical profession consider “healing” a gift that cannot be taught.

Most legal clients seek out attorneys who have a reputation for winning in court or negotiations, regardless of where they studied. What counts most in the legal profession is passing the Bar and winning in practice. Lots of stellar and brilliant law school students never get to practice law because they fail to pass the Bar Exam, which tests application of the law. Professions take knowledge for granted. Skill in legal work is often described as a gift that cannot be taught. Some consider it an inherited trait that runs in families.

NightWatch considers predictive accuracy in analysis -- in other words, the ability to think accurately in “future time” -- to be a gift as well. At one brief period in the late 1990, the Directorate of Intelligence, Joint Chiefs of Staff, had six analysts in a pool of 120 who had this gift. The norm was one in 120 analysts, over a 12- year time period. It cannot be taught, but can be cultivated in those who have it, in the NightWatch experience.

Customers of intelligence analysis ought to have high expectations from their analysis centers, i.e., they should “get it right” most of the time. “Getting it right” is a diagnostic judgment that dictates the range of appropriate problem solving solutions, all the time and every time.

”Getting it wrong” constitutes prima facie malpractice and there ought to be consequences for malpractice in analysis in national security affairs because lives may be and have been at great risk because analysts failed. Every profession has penalties for malpractice.


The “specialized knowledge” is the ways living national systems behave so as to thrive when healthy and survive when not. Knowledge of the system of nation states is necessary and useful, but not enough for achieving professional judgment in analysis of international security affairs. Professional analysts of national security threats are more than biological card catalogues.

Knowledge of nation state behavior alone ensures no more than 75% accuracy in predictive judgments, in real life experience in the J2, Joint Chiefs of Staff. In the open source world, Tetlock’s work indicates customers should expect less than 30% predictive accuracy. Both figures are less than the empirical experience of unclassified predictive markets that achieve 85% by pure guesswork. These are chilling and humbling data points.

Thus the aim of intelligence analytical education, training and work experience is to nurture consistent and dependable sound judgment in the application of knowledge and experience in national security problem solving. Put simply, if our well educated and experienced analysts can’t do better than dilettante guessers, they need to get other jobs, and the agencies need to rethink their recruitment criteria.

Intelligence analysis is purposeful behavior, as in any other profession. The professional purpose is not to become brilliant. Knowledge for its own sake is a worthy pursuit, but it is not an attribute of a profession. The goal, purpose and product of the profession of analyst is to apply knowledge and experience to maintain the security of this great Republic.

Astute Readers by now will have deduced that NightWatch has an evaluation process for the accuracy of its judgments. As one incredibly brilliant professional Reader remarked, we ain’t playing bean bag.

NightWatch evaluates four kinds of judgments in its work. They are:

-analytical in the sense of breaking down a phenomenon into its causes and key drivers;

-synthetic in the sense of matching and merging as derivatives of reasoning by analogy;

-diagnostic in the sense of defining the phenomenon and phenomenology of the issue under analysis

-prognostic in the sense of predicting the way ahead.



Knowledge and experience in area and functional studies are interesting. They appear to be necessary and sufficient for analytical and synthetic judgments, as defined above. Those are fairly low grade inferences that in time will be accomplished by computer programs. DARPA is working on those programs now.

They are necessary but not sufficient for diagnosis and prognosis, which are the two cognitive functions or skills that distinguish the professional. Sensory sensitivity is critical in both functions and also often overlooked. Those with the diagnostic gift know always to start from a known state and are keenly sensitive to the slightest departures from normality, especially in international security affairs. The departures always are indicators of change.

Good technical assistants do breakdown, matching and merging work in doctor’s and law offices all over the country. Professional excellence lies in sound diagnosis and prognosis. They require the professional instead of the technician.

The tests of sound judgment that NightWatch always applies are taken from the scientific method: auditability, replicability and inability to be refuted.

Expertise is merely the starting point of what people call “analysis” in the generic use of that much abused term. It is not the end state and not sufficient to achieve the end state described in this note: professional judgment.

Young and new analysts, you are working on developing your professional judgment, not your academic credentials or the number of your deployment badges. Everything else should be devoted to refining and improving your judgment or it has no value to you in the profession of analysis.


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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Rony » 31 Jul 2009 10:02

Church funds equal Indian Navy’s annual budget
Christians are a mere 2.5 per cent of the country’s population. But, the Church in India suffers from a case of plenty, says Remy Denis, All India Catholic Union President.
Church authorities control funds equivalent to the Indian Navy’s annual budget. The Church is also the second largest employer after the government, he said.
Eduardo Faleiro, a former Union minister and Goa NRI Commissioner, is among the growing number of Catholics like Prof Denis, who support a law to govern Church properties and a far greater degree of transparency in the way the Church manages its earthly assets.

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Satya_anveshi » 01 Aug 2009 07:25

Satya_anveshi wrote:1. Terrorism sponsorship; == has been estabished
2. Unkil's influence is by far the biggest in every critical policy making; == has been established

I hope the following problems of Pakistan don't manifest in India (at least to the extent of what we see in Pakistan).

1. food and essential prices going up
2. Water and power crisis
3. sharp increase in insurgency level and resultant law and order problems
4. civic confidence and civic sense destabilized

If someone is hell bent on making things ==, then a lot can happen.


Don’t trivialise rice scam: Advani

Sonia asks States to keep “strictest possible vigil” on prices

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby shravan » 01 Aug 2009 21:39

Hindu Economics and Charity

In a recent article on Wall Street Journal, its bureau chief in New Delhi Paul Beckett has wondered why India’s rich were not generous enough towards charity, has exhorted them to ‘open their wallets’, and implicitly made reference to the Hindu roots of the phenomenon.

His misguided opinion is a typical example of how the western journalists posted in India develop their views and spread the typical stereotypes about India, whose spirit they have never tried to, or succeeded in, grasping. His usage of the derogatory term “Hindu Rate of Growth” reminds us of a similarly stale and offending commentary on the growth of Indian Industry by another western journalist stationed in India, Edward Luce, in his ‘In Spite of the Gods: The Strange Rise of Modern India’. Unfortunately for them, these western commentators on the economics of India are prisoners of their cognitive cocoon, and while physically being here, they fail to understand the experience of Hindu Civilization and keep ignorantly applying the norms and standards of their own culture when commenting about India.

Rajeev Srinivasan has masterfully responded with his incisive reply to the ignorant premise taken by Beckett on the “Hindu Rate of Growth”, and Dr. Koenraad Elst has dissected at length Luce’s outlook in a recent article. Here we shall share some random thoughts from the historical perspectives on Hindu outlook to economy and charity, and try showing how, there is continuity even today, although latent, of the same outlook prevailing among the more traditional Hindu shreShThins of our age.

The very reason why industry is needed to flourish, according to kauTilya, is to spread dharma in society which alone can beget lasting and all-round happiness. artha, the economy, he says, is the most important function of society, as it is solely from this basis that both the fulfillment of dharma and pursuit of desires can be accomplished (“arthaiva pradhAnaiiti kauTilyaH arthamUlau hi dharmakAmau iti: AS 1.7.6-7). Economy is like a tree, further says kauTilya, if whose roots are rooted in dharma, it produces the fruits of happiness. Achievement of such dhArmika wealth further promotes dharma and produces more wealth and gives more pleasure. This is the achievement of all the gains. (dharma-mUlatvAt kAma-phalatvAchArthasya dharma-artha-kAma anubandhA yA^arthasya siddhiH sA sarva.artha.siddhiH AS9.7.81)

Creation of wealth for the welfare of society was considered so important that bR^ihadAraNyaka upaniShada relates that bramhA was compelled to create the vaishya-s skilled in industrial enterprise and organizing business, since the first two varNa-s proved incapable or disinclined in doing so. (“…sa naiva vyabhavat, sa viShamasR^ijat, yAnyetAni devajAtAni, gaNASha AkhyAyante…”).

So, continuous creation of wealth is of absolute importance for the stability of society, which is required for the growth of dharma. kauTilya holds that if happiness is the objective and strength is the power, then wealth is one of the three types of those strengths to achieve it. (“shaktiH siddhishca | balaM shaktiH | sukhaM siddhiH | shaktistrividhA … kosha-daNDa-balaM…” AS6.2.31-34), and it is one of the reasons, why a government is needed, that is for prospering the society and spreading the dharma. A government is required for security of wealth, and once peace and industry is ensured (through a 6-fold policy that he enumerates), all-round wealth is automatically created. (“shamavyAyAmau yogakSemayoryoniH | shamavyAyAmayoryoniH ShADguNyam…” AS6.2.1&4).

But not only ensuring the right environ for society to generate and secure the wealth, but also the guarantee that the wealth really reaches the people, is counted by kauTilya as a basic prerequisite. (“…loka-priyatvam artha-saMyogena vR^ittiM… AS1.7.1). Therefore, the wealth of society is to not only be protected but also distributed. It is the people who are, for him, the center of good governance, and without attention to them a society, he says, is like a barren cow, useless and yielding no milk. (“puruShavad hi rAjyam; apuruShA gaurvandhyeva kiM duhIta… AS7.11.24-25”)

Hoarding of wealth, without either consuming it or distributing it, is throughout denounced by all the Hindu thinkers and dharma-shAstrakAra-s. Traditional wisdom tells us that charity, enjoyment, and destruction, wealth is only destined to go in one of these three ways. One who neither spends in charity, nor enjoys it, his is sure to go by the way of the third, i.e. destroyed. (“dAnaM bhogo nAshastistrI gatayo bhavanti vittasya; yo na dadAti na bhu~Nkte cha tasya tR^itIyA gatirnAshaH — vikrama charita, Andhra, 3.86).

A more aesthetically presented view of the same thought, from another source: ‘the wealth of those who simply hoard theirs, is eventually enjoyed not by them but by the others, like the honey collected through the industriousness of someone else is eventually consumed by someone else!’ (“ati-saMchaya-kartR^iNAM vittamansya kAraNaM; anyaiH saMchIyate yatnAdanyaishcha madhu pIyate”: vallabhadeva.474).

Another author intuitively compares unconsumed and hoarded wealth with daughters, who are lovingly brought up with care and affection by parents, only to eventually go off to someone else’s household! (upabhogakAtarANAm puruShANAm arthasaMchayaparANAm; kanyAratnamiva gR^ihe tiShThantyarthAH parasyArthe: v.482)

One must also notice that while wealthy are appealed to spend towards their social responsibility throughout the wide array of shAstra-s, quoting which at length would amount to compiling several volumes, it is not the charity alone for which the wealthy are being exhorted for the welfare of society, but also simply for consumption and enjoyment of their wealth, thereby keeping money in circulation to ensure a wider and broader distribution of wealth. The circulation of money ensures the chain reaction of wealth-creation in society, as kauTilya says, wealth creates more wealth, like the roaming elephants procreate and gather more elephants (“arthair arthA prabadhyante gajAH pratigajairiva…AS9.4.27”).

chANakya does recognize that the wealthy could easily grow a tendency of hoarding their riches and not share it with the commonwealth of the society, therefore not only does he warn the King to be cautious of such hoarding capitalists and keep them under watch, but in the spirit for which kauTilya is known, also suggests some innovative ways of how the King could justly rid such ones of some of their wealth when needed. One nice contrive he suggests is not devoid of some humour, although kauTilya must have been serious prescribing it. The King might employ a spy who takes the garb of a rich merchant, or even employ a real trustworthy merchant, who shall then go to the intended business and borrow the desired sum in gold or silver or some other costly or imported merchandise, and then having procured this loan, this spy can suitably “allow himself to be robbed”, maybe at the same night!

So no wonder, another text informs the accumulators, that their wealth, unless they spend it more generously or conduct charities, will invite only the attention of crime and decay. ‘One who neither enjoys his wealth nor donates it to those worthy of it, must rest assured that his accumulation would find its way either to the houses of the thieves or eventually rot in the belly of the earth’. (saMchitaM kratuShu nopayujyate yAchitaM guNavate na dIyate; tat-kadarya-pariraKShitaM dhanaM chaurapArthiva gR^iheShu gachcHati)

One well-known snippet of wisdom differentiates between the charitable rich and the shameless accumulators, by employing the simile of clouds and ocean, and says that ‘the glory of donors always thunders from the sky like the clouds that generously give us water, while those who keep on accumulating wealth without returning, always rot at the lowest strata of rasAtala like the ocean which only knows to receive and store’. (gauravaM prApyate dAnAt na tu vittasya sa~nchayAt; sthitiH uchchaiH payodAnAM payodhInAM adhaH sthitiH)

Some of the popular aphorisms attributed to chANakya advise us likewise, that ‘while a man must learn to be content with his wife, his wealth, and his food, he should never tire in zealously conducting these other three things: learning, recitations, and more charity’. (santoShas triShu kartavyaH sva-dAre bhojane dhane, triShu chaiva na kartavyo-dhyayane-japa-dAnayo : chANakya-nIti-darpaNa 7.4)

Another one points to the right and wrong ways of picking up fields for conducting charity: ‘Feeding a man who is not hungry is as useless as clouds raining over the ocean, and donating to someone who is not needy is as useless as lighting a lamp in the daylight’. (yathA vR^iShTiH samudreShu tR^iptasya bhojanam; vR^ithA dAnam samarthasya vR^ithA dIpo divApi cha: CND5.16)

This reminds us of that famous benchmark of charity established in the bhArata, narrated by a mongoose towards the end of the ashwamedha yaj~na of the pANDava-s. The mysterious mongoose who had half of his body as golden, announced to an astonished yudhiShThira that all the donations and charities made by pANDava-s during the yaj~na for which they were proud, were useless and not equal to even one fistful of crushed barley (saktU) donated by the family of a certain brAhmaNa. He then went on to narrate a tale of how one side of his body turned golden by just witnessing the sacrifice of that family which had nothing to eat and was starving, and having found this little crushed barley after tedious effort, as they were about to eat it, a guest appeared and begged them for it, and this starving family happily decided to offer it to him. That is charity, says mongoose in the fourteenth book of bhArata, adding since then he is roaming around to see another charity of that magnitude to turn the rest of his body golden too, but not succeeding.

We are also reminded of that prayer of kabIra, a householder saint, ‘sA.I itanA dIjiye jAme kuTuma samAya, maiM bhI bhUkhA nA rahUM sAdhu a bhUkhA jAya’: (Lord grant us just enough so that my family may survive; just that much, in which we don’t sleep hungry nor a sAdhu returns hungry from our doors.)

What about the charity with black money accumulated by the corrupt businessmen? Not acceptable, says this medieval jaina text that deals solely with the regulation of donations. ‘Donating such ill-earned money is of as much benefit’, it says, ‘as the medicine to that patient who refuses to follow the restrictions of pathyApathya prescribed by his doctor!’ (yo vahyAshArjitArthassann kurvansa bahudhA vR^iShaM; doShI vA~ncHAnniva svAsthyaM bhuktvaivApathyamauShadhaM : dAnopashAsanam.179). It sternly says that like an infertile woman can not conceive, even if she goes to bed with a thousand men, auspiciousness does never arise in someone with evil methods and ill-gotten money, no matter how much charity done. (sahastra-jana-bhogepi vandhyAyAM najuto yathA…101). The same work also says that, in contrast, only the charity from the honest money earned by the noble businessmen flourishes in the aid of dharma; it never exhausts, never meets loss, nor is ever stolen, since if charity of honestly-earned money serves dharma, dharma too protects such earning and such charity. (satpuruSho-rjayati dhanaM yat sakalajaneShTa-sAdhu-vR^iddhashchaiva syAt; tasya dhanasya cha hAnirnAnupahata-dharma-bala-suguptasyaiva. 180)

The prospective receivers of charity had a right to reject the donation too, and they did reject such donations on many occasions. Comes to our mind that instance related in the ancient drama mR^ichcHakaTikA where a brAhmaNa stoutly declines the invitation to partake of a lunch and receive donation from a householder. The jaina text referred above probably explains why. That, by receiving the ill-gotten money, earned through various sins, the receiver (dvija) of such charity has to also share with the donor those sins, and is verily destroyed. (nija-pApArjitam dravyam dvijebhyo dadate nR^ipAH; tairnaShTA rAjabhirviprA dAnam doShadamuchyate. 9)

Another very important aspect which might be hard for the secularized variety to fathom is that it is the temples and the maTha-s, vihAra-s and the jinAlaya-s which were and are the trustees of the charitable commonwealth of society, and giving to them meant returning to the Lord who can then multiply it and return it back. While it is a well known knowledge and demands citing no special evidence, what is interesting is to notice that business in ancient India did more than simply financial contribution to the religious institutions – they also regulated as well as facilitated such charities, and behaved as the responsible trustees also for the small private donations as a very organized activity. We can do no better than quote Prof. R C Majumdar at some length:

“…furnished by an inscription of huvishka at mathurA, dated in the year 28 (c. 106 AD), (the prashasti) refers to an akShaya-nIvI (perpetual endowment) of 550 purANa-s each to two guilds, one of which was that of flour-makers (comment: so that this guild will now use the interest from this money for the intended charitable purpose on behalf of the donor). An inscription in a cave at nAsik, dated in the year 42 (120 AD), records the donation of 3000 kArShApaNa-s by UShavadatta, son-in-law of the shaka chief nahapAna. The gift was intended for the benefit of the Buddhist monks dwelling in the cave, and the entire sum was invested in the guilds dwelling at govardhana in the following manner: 2000 in a weavers’ guild, the rate of interest being one per cent per month, and 1000 in another weavers’ guild at the rate of 0.75 per cent per month. It is clearly stated that these kArShApaNa-s are not to be repaid, their interest only to be enjoyed.”

“An inscription at Junnar records the investment of the income of two fields with the guild at koNAchika for planting kara~nja trees and banyan trees. Another inscription at junnAr records investment of money with the guild of bamboo-workers and the guild of braziers. A third inscription at junnAr record the gift of a cave and a cistern by the guild of corn-dealers. An inscription at nagarajonikonDA, dated 333 AD refers to a permanent endowment created by a person for the maintenance of the religious establishments made by him. The endowment consisted of a deposit of 70 dInAra-s in one guild and 10 each in three other guilds, out of the interest of which specific acts had to be done. Only names of two guilds are legible, namely those of pAnika (probably sellers or growers of betel leaves) and pUvaka (confectioners).” “The Indore Copper-plate Inscription of Skanda Gupta dated in the year 146, i.e. 465 AD, records the gift of an endowment, the interest of which is to be applied to the maintenance of a lamp which has been established in a temple for the service of the Sun-God.”

“We learn from an inscription of vaillabhaTTasvAmin Temple at Gwalior, dated 933 VS, that while the merchant savviyAka, the trader ichcHuvAku and the other members of the Board of the SavviyakAs were administering the city, the whole town gave to the temple of the Nine durgA-s, a piece of land, which was its (viz., the town’s) property. Similarly it gave another piece of land, belonging to the property of the town, to the viShNu temple, and also made perpetual endowments with the guilds of oil-millers and gardeners for ensuring the daily supply of oil and garlands to the temple. This long inscription preserves an authentic testimony of a city corporation with an organised machinery to conduct its affairs. The corporation possessed landed properties of its own and could make gifts and endowments in the name of the whole town.”

“Mention is made, by name, of four chiefs of the oil-millers of shrI-sarveshwara-pura, of four chiefs of the oil-millers of shrI-vatsasvAmI-pura, and four chiefs of the oil-millers of two other places, and we are told that these together with the other (members) of the whole guild of oil-millers should give one palika of oil per oil-mill every month (to the temple). Similarly, the other endowment was to the effect that the seven chiefs, mentioned by name, and the other (members) of the whole guild of gardeners should give fifty garlands every day.”

Such was the public charity and maintenance of social wealth, through cooperative and democratic organization. Prof. Majumdar notes that, “the objects with which these endowments were made are manifold, and due performance of them must have required extra-professional skill. Thus one guild is required to plant particular trees, while several others, none of which had anything to do with medicine, were to provide it for the sick.”

Several other inscriptions, particularly and more clearly from, although not limited to, the draviDa country reinforce this view. Prof. Majumdar notes how a combination of a village pa~nchAyata, democratically elected, organized the charity in draviDa country, and used to form the very basis of the economic functioning of the villages and to the spread the benefit of the commonwealth: “An inscription of rAjArAja choLa records the gift of a sum of money by a merchant, from the interest of which the Assembly and the residents of tiruviDavandai had to supply oil to feed a perpetual lamp. Sometimes these endowments involved two-fold banking transactions. We learn from a choLa inscription that a merchant made over a sum of money to the residents of taiyUr on condition that they should pay interest in oil and paddy to the Assembly of tiruviDavandai for burning a lamp in the temple and feeding 35 Brahmanas. There are other examples, too numerous to be recorded in detail, where the South Indian records represent the Village Assemblies as public trustees or local banks.”

Temples likewise served as the repository of public wealth, and lent their money for public works in the time of its need like famine, floods or epidemic. “An inscription at ala~NguDI dated in the 6th year of rAjArAja refers to a terrible famine in the locality. The villagers had no funds to purchase paddy for their own consumption, seed grains and other necessaries for cultivation. For some reasons, the famine-stricken inhabitants could expect no help in their distress from the royal treasury. Accordingly the Assembly obtained on loan a quantity of gold and silver consisting of temple jewels and vessels from the local temple treasury. In exchange for this the members of the Village Assembly alienated 8314 velI of land in favour of the God. From the produce of this land the interest on the gold and silver received from the temple was to be paid. A Chola inscription also records that the Assembly borrowed money from temple treasury on account of “bad time” and scarcity of grains.” Yet another one informs how “the Assembly received an endowment of 100 kAsu from an individual for providing offerings in a temple and for expounding shiva-dharma in the Assembly-hall built in the temple by the same person. They utilized the sum for repairing damages caused by floods to irrigation channels.” [above quotes from Prof. R C Majumdar are from his masterpiece “Corporate Life in Ancient India”]

When the above was happening in the choLa country, a little while from now, rAjendra choLa’s friend and ally in North India, bhojadeva the paramAra would be establishing new standards of charity for merchants in his own country. The collective Hindu subconscious remembers the times of Bhoja as much for his charity, as for his valour and scholarship. It is this impression which is reflected when the jaina AchArya merutu~Nga states that two commodities were always precious and in demand in the kingdom of bhoja: Iron and Copper. Iron because of the excessive consumption by his military, and copper for the prashasti plates for donations! We might probably add the construction of temples and schools to the list. It was not the royal charity alone, but also the works performed by the merchants of his kingdom, such as in the famous bhojashAlA university, its central figure the vAgdevI of dhArAvatI was commissioned not by bhoja, but by a jaina lady named soShA hailing from a merchant family of his capital from her own money.

We can still happily notice the continuity of the same thought, to a large extent, prevailing even today among the more traditional wealthy Hindus. It comes as no surprise to learn that the donations to temples far exceed the amount spent on “charity” as claimed on the Income Tax returns. According to the Finance Ministry, the businesses filing corporate income taxes had recorded a total expenditure of about USD 2 billion during the year 2007. On the other hand the annual budget of Tirupati shrine alone, for the same year, exceeded USD 500 million: almost all of which goes to the charitable activities managed by the temple trust, besides a portion for the maintenance of the shrines. Now add to this amount the donations received by the other important Hindu shrines all over India!

For Hindu society, charity is not the only outlet of financial contribution to the society. We also hear the stories of complete financial sacrifice in the cause of the nation, such as that by the great jaina shreShThin of mewADa, whose name is permanently etched in golden letters on the rocky walls of the fort of Udaipur: Seth Bhamashah Oswal. In a few years after the battle of haldIghATI, mahArANA pratApa siMha was not left with any resources to carry on his resistance against the moghal tyrant. Disheartened, he is said to have decided to give up, just when, apparently inspired by ekali~Nga mahAdeva in a dream, patriotic ShreShThin met mahArANA and laid down at his feet all his wealth. Seth Bhamashah, the guild leader of the merchants of mewADa and mArawADa, was no small man, nor his donation a small sum. With this financial sacrifice of patriotic businessman, mahArANA reorganize his senA and proceed to launch a renewed and rejuvenated tumultuous struggle. ShreShThin went further than just donating his money, and also advised mahArANA to attack and regain first the trade routes and stifle the supply chains of the moghals in west. It is by following this advise that in less than a decade, mahArANA quickly brought the imperial control to its feet and reclaimed almost entire mewADa. Seth also led from the front, leading a regiment of mahArANA’s army, and fighting on battlefields along with an equally valiant brother of his, seTha tArAchanda oswAl.

Likewise, how can we forget the contribution of another great vaishya warrior, who a little before this time, rose to reclaim the Hindu independence in dillI by spending all his wealth on raising a senA to crush the foreigners and picking up a sword himself: himU, the son of a powerful merchant from mithilA. Moslem chroniclers use for himU the abusive epithet of ‘bakkAla’, a derogatory term for ‘shopkeeper’, alluding to his business background.

An important aspect which one notices is that the underlying principle, stressed by the traditions in the enterprise of charity, is humility. Charity was not a matter of show for the Hindu, as it is generally in the west and as the westernized Hindu corporate is now learning these days as it seems, but something which was to be done silently. shAstra-s teach one to conduct charity in such a way that while one’s right hand donates, the left does not even get the wind of it. It is these who are called the real udAra-s and dAtA-s, and it is their charity which is considered the real charity. ‘Among the hundred men born’, says this well known piece of wisdom, ‘only one is found to be brave and among thousands born only one could become a paNDita, among ten thousands born only one grows to become a good orator but truly rare and precious is the birth of such real donors, when they happen or don’t happen, knows who!’ (shateShu jAyate shUraH… dAtA bhavati vA na vA)

This reminds us of the well-known kiMvadanti about a friendly exchange between tulasIdAsa and abdur-rahIm. We know that tulasIdAsa was well-known within the circle of Akbar, with at least one copper prashasti discovered at kAshI in context of an endowment made by Todarmal which relates to his considering tulasIdAsa as his master. According to this well-known narrative, once an acquaintance of tulasIdAsa needed some money for arranging the wedding of his daughter, and asked tulasIdAsa for financial help. Todarmal who used to govern kAshI was away those days for some military campaign in North West, so tulasI sent this man, with a letter of recommendation to rahIma, the adopted son of Akbar and the symbolic head of the moghal clan, khanekhAnA, who was known to be wealthy and charitable. rahIma received the man with humility, returned him with more money than requisitioned for, and also sent a humble letter of thanks for tulasIdAsa. Hearing of rahIm’s humility, and reading the letter, tulasI replied back with a dohA, saying: “sIkhe kahAM nawAbajU denI aisI dena, jyauM jyauM kara Upara uThata tyauM tyauM nIche naina” (‘Wherefrom did our dear nawAb learn this mode of giving / Higher rise his arms in charity, lower turns his gaze in humility’). To this rahIma is said to have replied, “denahAra koi aura hai deta rahata dina-raina, loga bharama hama para dharahi tA te nIche naina” (‘The giver is someone else, who keeps giving day and night / people confuse us to be the donor, causing us the embarrassment’). At one place, rahIma himself says that, ‘we consider those not alive, who only live on alms, but we consider those even deader, from whom charity does not come’. (“rahimana te jana to muye je jana maMgahi jAya; unate pahile te muye jinate nikasata nAhi”)

We are reminded of another great mArawADI ShreShThin from va~Nga, the father of bhAratendu harishchandra, seTha harSha chandra, whose name is still taken with respect in the city of kAshI due to massive investments he made in the service of sarasvatI. bhAratendu, his son, or shall we say sarasvatI’s son, went further and practically spent all his wealth in reviving Hindu culture, especially its languages, at a time when it was most needed: setting up schools and printing presses, establishing journals and granting scholarships all over the North India, and leading the intellectual assault from the front himself.

We remember Lala Lajpat Rai, the scion of a well known wealthy family from panjAb, who decided to dedicate all his wealth in the cause of the freedom struggle. At one place we read in the memoir by the elder son of Lal Bahadur Shastri, the grateful reminiscence of the services that the legendary lAlAji silently did from his wealth for the freedom struggle. Shastriji’s son recounted here that lAlAji used to send money orders every month to those countless families whose bread winners were either languishing in British prisons or had been martyred. He also contributed in a major way towards founding of the Hindu University at kAshI.

Talking of the Hindu University of kAshI, let this be reminded that it started and continued to operate its massive infrastructure, solely on the private contribution from the wealthy Hindu businessmen and royals from across bhArata. It is only later, post-independence, that the government began contributing to it.

Yet another important institution comes to mind that was started at kAshI for the Hindu revival even before this, the kAshI nAgarI prachAriNI sabhA, which made no small contribution in inflaming that flame of Hindu revival which now seems to have been all but extinguished. Even the functioning of that sabhA was the effort of the private Hindu charity effort.

Many years back, our father used to be in the employ of the shreShThin-kulabhUShaNa GD Birla’s family for some years, and we are in intimate knowledge of how this family was and is committed to spending on public welfare, and especially for the spread and growth of dharma, much of which may not be known in public. We need not enumerate how this house is even today on the frontlines of charity, and doing so silently. We also remember the naidU shreShThI-s who founded the shAlA where we studied for a few years when living in the draviDa country. The wealthy founder of the institute had four sons, and the philosophy of this gentleman used to be to treat society as a fifth one and share the wealth among five, not four. Their attitude to philanthropy was also typical and somewhat peculiar. They used to impart Industrial Training to the needy and then finance the machine tools for them to become self-employed and be responsible for themselves.

Coming back to Beckett, we think he might be right when he said that charity was practically a competitive sport in US business. He probably had in mind the native Indians charitably pushed into the business of gambling and gaming? Or he probably meant the proposal of the State of California to make gambling legal in the state for charity purposes? Or maybe he had in mind the recent case of the State of Connecticut suing the charity founded by the NBA star Charles D. Smith, Jr. for spending away the funds collected for charity on cruise vacations, cars and beauty services!

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby shravan » 08 Aug 2009 16:00

Academe as battleground - Part 1

Witzel and Clooney expose Indian follies and Indian vanities

Witzel and Clooney come and go and their so-called conferences, lectures and discussion meetings in India have exposed Indian academe’s vanities and follies. Their visits have their uses if only because they emphasized the known but rarely accepted limitations of the average Indian/Hindu intellectual that sees but has not been trained to decode what he sees into productive intelligence or information. This failure to see and decode is specific to the political objectives of Nehruvian-secular Indian academe and its more affluent master, American and European academe.

Like all invasions, foreign academic invasion into our sacred portals has been made possible by the active collaboration of our own scholars who are either partners and/or beneficiaries of their foreign patrons or just plain stupid; their stupidity fired by nothing more than arrogant presumptions of their own greatness and infallibility. Tamil and Sanskrit scholars, scholars of epigraphy and linguistics, scholars of Srivaishnavism and Saiva-Siddhanta and big and small historians guilty of encouraging and entertaining foreign merchants of Abrahamic religions masquerading as scholars in various disciplines, exemplify the latter.

Western universities and their political cousins, the strategic affairs think-tanks have been transformed into battlegrounds where issues of nationhood and nationalism of former colonies of White Christendom are raised, discussed and disposed of ex-parte, as is known in legal terminology. This is yet to be understood by Indian scholars who continue to live and cogitate within sequestered campuses; and for those that do step out, a beguiling foreign finger to hold on to is ready and waiting. Soon after they step out, the enticing finger puts a ring around their noses; but by then, it is too late for any kind of independent and self-willed intellectual mobility.

That ideas of our nation, nationhood and nationalism are being settled by foreigners and that such an academic discourse constitutes the basis not only for the systemic de-Hinduising mission of our nation by Nehruvian-secular polity but also for all separatist, sub-national assertions or insurgent movements inside our country has not even occurred to them. Some knowledge of the forces influencing geo-political trends is as mandatory for scholars as computer literacy, if only to train them to see the minefields and pitfalls of contemporary academe.
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Academe as battleground - Part 1

Academe as Battleground - Part 2

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Yogi_G » 08 Aug 2009 21:35

ramana wrote:But serioously one should think as to why he is so persistent even after colonialism is dead and there is no need to persist with the AIT. Something deeper is there to feed this quest. Guy doesnt know Sanskrit or anything yet he is PRof of Ancient Indian Studies at Harvard. Dal sab kuch kala hain!


The west's 15 seconds of fame is over, the tectonic plates of power are shifting back to the rightful places, India and China. The West is like a aged matinee idol whose best days are over. Irritable and grumpy, anything and everything is seen as an insult and the bitterness of seeing the next generations of actors pulling in the crowds causes it. What is left to be done is to appropriate all the good things in the world as "Western". Dharmic thought and philiosophy is mankind's greatest intellectual output. While the ship (Western Civiliztion) sinks it is time to keep repeating the lie that all good things in the world somehow came from the west. In Witzel's case the pain of being proven completely wrong by the genetic studies of South Asia was too much to take.

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Prem » 11 Aug 2009 01:55

CNN reporting 6.6 magnitude Earthquake near Andaman islands and tsunami alert.

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 21 Aug 2009 22:33

Seminar India Issue on National Security is out. Please browse and discuss or quote interesting topics.

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Hari Seldon » 23 Aug 2009 19:33


ramana
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 23 Aug 2009 20:32

For the great Conmist.

tsriram wrote:This may not be the best thread for this but posting anyway.

RayC saars link on the Partition of Bengal thread led me to search for more information on the Orissa Famine of 1866. I found this book - Famines and Poverty In India which deals with this famine.

Some of the conten in there makes your blood boil - the kind of "rule" the brits had over the province and their actions which precipitated the death by hunger of millions.

And we get lectured by these #$%!

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby SSridhar » 24 Aug 2009 16:38

ramana wrote:Seminar India Issue on National Security is out. Please browse and discuss or quote interesting topics.


From Paul Kapur's Deterrence & Asymmetric Warfare
India, then, faces an extremely difficult deterrence problem. The Indians must threaten to take action that is sufficiently severe to make continued pursuit of an asymmetric warfare strategy prohibitively costly for Pakistan. Simultaneously, however, the threatened action must not be so severe that it would be likely to trigger a Pakistani nuclear response, and thus lack credibility. Can India strike that balance?

The Indians are actively working to find a solution to this problem.

Recent Indian doctrinal innovation has attempted to operationalize this ‘limited war’ logic. For example, India’s ‘Cold Start’ doctrine seeks to drive Indian armoured, infantry, and artillery forces into Pakistan within 72 to 96 hours of a mobilization order. The Indians’ objective would be to attrit Pakistani forces and to seize a long, shallow swathe of Pakistani territory – a swathe sufficiently large to seriously harm Pakistan, but not so large as to threaten the state’s survival and trigger a nuclear response. The ability to threaten to inflict such costs could, in theory, help India to deter Pakistan from supporting further anti-Indian militancy.

But even if Cold Start, or some similar means of punishing Pakistan, were currently available to India, it is not clear that this would solve the problem of Pakistan-based anti-Indian militancy. This is the case because the Pakistani government is increasingly losing control of the militant organizations that it created and nurtured.

Along with the government, the army, and the intelligence services, the militants now comprise one of the main centres of gravity within Pakistan. As a result, the militants are able to conduct their own policy. In doing so, they often act against the interests of the Pakistani government, attacking security personnel, assassinating officials, and launching attacks on India that could trigger a regional conflict.
t may increasingly be too late for India to coerce Pakistan into ending anti-Indian militancy; Pakistan may be unable to do so, regardless of the nature of Indian threats. In the future, what may be more useful than deterrent strategies is a recognition of common Indo-Pakistani interests.
In order to do so, the Pakistani government must truly forswear militancy, ending support for the terrorists and accepting international military and financial assistance in defeating them – despite militancy’s appeal as a means of inflicting costs on India. The Pakistanis need to recognize that the costs of supporting terrorism outweigh its benefits, and that before long they may be wholly unable to regain command of the situation.

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby brihaspati » 24 Aug 2009 18:21

Quote:
Along with the government, the army, and the intelligence services, the militants now comprise one of the main centres of gravity within Pakistan. As a result, the militants are able to conduct their own policy. In doing so, they often act against the interests of the Pakistani government, attacking security personnel, assassinating officials, and launching attacks on India that could trigger a regional conflict.
Quote:
t may increasingly be too late for India to coerce Pakistan into ending anti-Indian militancy; Pakistan may be unable to do so, regardless of the nature of Indian threats. In the future, what may be more useful than deterrent strategies is a recognition of common Indo-Pakistani interests.
Quote:
In order to do so, the Pakistani government must truly forswear militancy, ending support for the terrorists and accepting international military and financial assistance in defeating them – despite militancy’s appeal as a means of inflicting costs on India. The Pakistanis need to recognize that the costs of supporting terrorism outweigh its benefits, and that before long they may be wholly unable to regain command of the situation.


An astute sequence of observations but then an absurd conclusion! If it is already acknowledged that Pakistan may "be unable to do so", regardless of the "nature of Indian threats", then it means no component of Pakistan is in position of power strong enough to resist the overall Jihadi anti-Indian thrust. How can such components have common interests with India to cooperate and collaborate in any agenda of neutralizing such Jihadi threats?

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 26 Aug 2009 01:45

Some subjects studied by Indian Intellectual Elite at IIAS, Shimla.

Fellows of IIAS

Take look at the subjects and the timeline.

ramana
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 26 Aug 2009 02:02

US Berkeley course syllabus on

Conquest of India

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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Prem » 26 Aug 2009 02:03

ramana wrote:Some subjects studied by Indian Intellectual Elite at IIAS, Shimla.

Fellows of IIAS

Take look at the subjects and the timeline.


DIEs

ramana
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 26 Aug 2009 02:10

Not really. Most of the topics we are looking just now. Read what they chose to write on.

ramana
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 26 Aug 2009 10:00

Do we have Indian scholars who study the others and define the in Indic terms? All I see is Indian scholars studying Indians through others eyes and define them in others terms.


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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ShauryaT » 01 Sep 2009 00:24

Although this is from BK and covers his nuclear stand, the message is larger, hence posting it here in full.
Habit of Free Riding


FOR nations, as with people, bad habits are hard to break. Free-riding refers to the benefit of security that an established great power with its world-wide military presence and force deployment provides lesser states. It is protection that friendly countries can enjoy whether or not they are in a formal alliance relationship or strategic partnership with a superior power. Often, a convergence of interests, political values, and/or ideology is enough for the free-riding option to become available. What fuels it is the expectation of the beneficiary state that the proximal foe and the adversarial big power alike will be deterred with minimal expenditure of its own resources. Free-riding offers relatively poor and weak countries or states, unwilling adequately to invest in their own defence, security without sweat, but it is something a would- be great power, such as India, should eschew.

Alas, over the 60-odd years of its independent existence, India has become habituated to relying on one great power or the other for its security. In Jawaharlal Nehru’s time, the United States primarily provided security, though it was something of a diplomatic high-wire act India had to pull off. It required the country to teeter between its pretensions as leader of the nonaligned nations (which grouping Delhi hoped would become the balancer in the Cold War between the rival blocs) by championing anti-colonialism, anti-racism and disarmament, and the reality of dealing with an overmatched and aggressively expansionist adversary next door, China.

Simultaneously, it meant tippy-toeing around issues that alienated either the United States (Nehru urged Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser not to nationalize the Suez Canal in 1956) or the Soviet Union (Nehru was studiously silent regarding the 1956 people’s revolt in Hungary against the Soviet-supported regime). It was not principles, but expediency, that marked Indian foreign policy during its most active and inventive phase.

In the realpolitik context, Washington envisioned an American stake in the success of democratic India to rival the attractions of the rough and ready political, economic and development model offered by Communist China to Third World countries. India was propped up by economic assistance – grants in-aid and credit on easy terms from the World Bank, technical cooperation in agriculture that made India food-sufficient – and just so that India could progress without being concerned overmuch about the looming Chinese menace, the United States (with the United Kingdom in secondary role) opened out its strategic umbrella.

By the late 1950s, in order to stave off the expected ‘internal Communist revolution’ or Chinese attack, Pentagon war plans, with Nehru in the know, allotted one carrier task force, an amphibious force with integral air support, one airborne division, three nuclear demolition teams, one composite air strike force, a medium bomber wing on rotation from the Strategic Air Command, and air transport capability to lift one whole airborne battle group, for the defence of India.1

However, it was Washington’s deliberate efforts at divesting the dual-use Indian nuclear energy programme of its weapons capability and the punitive use of economic and food aid combined with its unwillingness, in the wake of the 1962 War with China, to arm India with modern military hardware, in particular the supersonic F-104G fighter aircraft, that led Indira Gandhi to seek protection from the other super power, even as India continued to rely centrally on US economic aid. This policy reached its apogee with the activation of the Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation with the Soviet Union during the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War, offering the Indian government and armed services the freedom of action, even as Russian submarines tailed the USS Enterprise Task Group-74 into the Bay of Bengal and possibly deterred American military intervention.

It may be noted, however, that during the entire time that India was free-riding on security, courtesy the US-UK combo up till the mid-60s and the Soviet Union in the subsequent 25 years, it safeguarded its policy options and carefully nursed its strategic nuclear military capabilities, retaining for the country the space for independent manoeuvre. It led to India developing nuclear weapons and missiles in the face of punitive western technology denial regimes (Non-Proliferation Treaty, Missile Technology Control Treaty) and, coupled with its economic potential and resources, securing for the country the necessary heft to compel changes in the world order.

But a curious thing happened. The acquisition of economic prowess and a strategic deterrent, instead of leading to a more assertive and independent role for India in the international arena, as happened elsewhere – for example, France withdrawing from NATO after securing its nuclear force de frappe – spawned diffidence and a policy of trivializing the country’s nuclear security and strategic imperatives. How else to explain the landmark nuclear civilian cooperation deal with the United States predicated on India’s permanently consigning the nuclear testing option to cold storage, and leaving the country with untested, unproven, unreliable and unsafe thermonuclear weapons that apparently do not scare a piddling Pakistan, leave alone China?

If the idea was for this deal specifically to facilitate India’s falling back on the US strategic arsenal for safety in a nuclear crisis with China, it could not have been designed any better. There are similarities with the situation existing in the 1950s except, ironically, Nehru’s India, for example, sans any of the prerequisites of power, boxed way above its weight-class on the global stage.

There is a god-awful tendency – almost a constant in Indian strategic culture – prompting Indian rulers regularly to draw defeat from the jaws of victory. The 12th century Delhi king, Prithviraj Chauhan, beat the invader, Mohammad Ghori, at the first Battle of Tarain but failed to pursue him beyond Bhatinda and finish him off, only to face defeat the next year when the Afghan looter, showing no comparable mercy, ended the game by putting out the Delhi king’s eyes. Maharaja Scindia of Gwalior at the Third Battle of Panipat in 1761 terminated hostilities on the say-so of his court astrologer at a juncture when the Afghan marauder, Ahmed Shah Abdali, faced abject defeat. It afforded Abdali the time to regroup and ultimately to prevail.

Fast-forwarding in time, Indira Gandhi stopped full-fledged weaponization in its tracks after the first Pokhran blast in 1974. Had she not choked, by the then American Secretary of State Henry Kissinger’s own account, India’s admission into the Non-Proliferation Treaty as a nuclear weapon state, alongside the ‘Big Five’ – the United States, Soviet Union, United Kingdom, France, and China, was a certainty. Vaulting into an expanded UN Security Council as permanent member with veto rights, and easing the country’s passage into the great power ranks would then have been a mere formality.

Again in 1998, Atal Bihari Vajpayee resumed nuclear testing, including of a thermonuclear design, and rather than have open-ended testing of higher yield weapon designs and hydrogen warheads for various missiles with different nose-cone geometries eventuating in a proven thermonuclear deterrent, announced a ‘voluntary’ test moratorium, leaving India strategically, once again, between and betwixt – neither a full-scale nuclear power nor a non-nuclear weapon state, and well short of great power status. It is this test moratorium, moreover, that Washington froze into a non-testing premise – the foundation for the nuclear deal.

The US insistence on India’s giving up testing ought to have sounded alarm bells for the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on many grounds, mainly geopolitical and military – how is India to emerge as a ‘major power’ (that US promised it will help India become) or, for that matter, a credible counterweight to China in Asia that geopolitically would serve the US purposes best, without India’s strategic thermonuclear wherewithal attaining at least ‘notional parity’ with its Chinese counterpart?2 But Manmohan Singh was persuaded by the argument of the economic gains from the supposed nuclear energy flow from imported reactors to meet electricity shortfalls. Some tradeoff this: India remaining a second-rate power for a small jump in electricity output!

The debilitating historical penchant aside, the fact is the Indian ruling class has always been enamoured by the prospect of the country becoming a great power on the cheap. Beginning in the fin de siecle, Rajiv Gandhi imbued his government with a ‘modern’ millennial sensibility. At a public level, this was reflected in his fascination for computers and high technology but in a time of flux in international relations – the breakdown of the Berlin Wall and the division of Europe, the demise of the Soviet Union, and the end of the Cold War and its simple certainties, and of the dissolution or reformation of the alliance structures at the heart of international affairs post-1945 – it signalled a return to the cautiousness of the Nehruvian age. All consequential powers were courted and even China merited an improvement in relations (Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi’s ‘long handshake’ with Chairman Dengxiaoping in 1988).

Rajiv Gandhi’s belief in technology as a vehicle for development and his rollout of the numerous ‘technology missions’ under Sam Pitroda, seeded the great informatics revolution, resulting in the totemic successes of the Indian private sector computer software industry. It epitomized the emergence on the global stage of a technologically savvy 21st century India. Because this development happened unannounced and unforeseen and, as if by magic, virtually overnight, it reinforced the view in political and official circles, amongst the generally uninformed intelligentsia and the urban middle class at-large that this could be the paradigm for India’s rise to great power status, all the more attractive because it demanded no expenditure of blood, sweat, tears and toil nor a consequential outward-looking military – the traditional way to great power.

This ‘great power on the cheap’ idea was merely a latter day embellishment of the tendency noticeable from Jawaharlal Nehru’s days when great power recognition was thought of as India’s natural entitlement – a view, perhaps, encouraged by the offer in the 1950s by the US President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Secretary of State John Foster Dulles to India of the UN Security Council seat occupied by Koumingtang China (under Generalissimo Chiangkaishek) – an offer, grievously for the country’s interests, Nehru in a fit of national self-abnegation turned down, saying Communist China deserved it more! That chance of ascending easily to the great power club passed never to return, though Nehru must have believed that more such offers will follow as the UN and the world simply could not do without India’s sage presence.

It is precisely this unsustainable conviction of India’s hop-skipping its way into the highest ranks that led the Indian policy elite quickly to latch on to the concepts of ‘soft power’ and, later, ‘smart power’. Harvard University Professor Joseph P. Nye., Jr., who parented both these concepts, would be amused to see an India striving to maximize its ‘soft’ or ‘smart’ power (Information Technology prowess, Bollywood films and music, traditional cultural artifacts, etc.), without possessing the iron of great power.

Nye’s recommendation that the United States use its soft power (Hollywood films, music, high technology edge, western liberal ideology and values, free market nostrums, agricultural and industrial muscle, foreign aid and development assistance, and so on) smartly was based on the existential premise that Washington’s tendency to use military force when in doubt was a counterproductive strategy. It ended up fuelling anti-Americanism all over the world and ill-served the US national interest.

But the building blocks of soft or smart power, as Nye, President Bill Clinton’s Assistant Secretary of Defence, emphasized, rested on the US’ unchallenged military might. It is this last aspect that the Indian analysts within and without the Indian government never paid attention to; presumably because they were so enthralled by these ‘politically correct’ sounding concepts, they did not bother to study what Nye had said. Nye postulated that soft power is best wielded in conjunction with the discriminate use of the country’s hard power (strategic nuclear and conventional military capabilities, bases with pre-positioned stores all over the world, and forwardly deployed military units), and that this would make the US a ‘smart power’.

The ‘smart’ use of its undoubted soft power will require that India first procure the elements of ‘hard power’ and the willingness to use it. If this is done, there will be no need for India to free-ride on security. In any case, this country’s recent historical experience reveals the limits of free-riding, which works just so long as the security provider is not asked to deliver on its promises, imperil its own interests, or put its military forces in harm’s way. The Pentagon plans and intentions for defending India evaporated once the US-UK combine in 1962 espied the possibility of its own forces clashing in a land war with the Chinese army in the Himalayas. It is then that Washington and London both recalled that the masses of PLA in Korea a decade earlier were a damned difficult adversary to defeat. Also that the use of tactical nukes against the Chinese hordes might be successful but could trigger a catalytic nuclear war with the Soviet Union coming in on China’s side.3

China in the 21st century remains India’s main Asian rival and competitor, except it is now so powerful an entity that even the United States would quail to take it on militarily, less so on some other country’s behalf. This is the reason why Asian allies of the United States may go in for nuclear weapons of their own.4 India, therefore, is left with no alternative other than to engage in a single-minded strategic build-up that will induce caution in Beijing. The activation of satellite air fields and the upgrading of main bases to host the Su-30 MKI main force for aggressive air defence mainly in the East is a start, as are the excavation of tunnel complexes invulnerably to station China-targeted Agni IRBMs.

A measure of military parity, however, will be achieved only when proven and tested thermonuclear missiles become available for bulk eployment and the Indian Army obtains a genuine offensive warfighting capability (between six to nine Light Mountain Divisions) enabling the battle to be taken to the Chinese in the mountains and on the Tibetan plateau. And as a complement, it is necessary that a tit-for-tat approach is adopted strategically to permanently discomfit China by helping countries on its periphery, such as Vietnam, secure critical strategic military technologies – a belated response to Beijing transferring nuclear weapon designs and technology to Pakistan, and giving it ongoing technical advice.

Ramped up strategic military cooperation with Japan, South Korea, Indonesia and, if it is appropriately inclined, Australia; the consolidation of the Indian Ocean littoral and ASEAN states in a cooperative regional security architecture; a policy of undercutting Chinese influence and taking Beijing head-on in Africa and Latin America to win friends and sew up access to oil and other natural resources, and extensive sales and transfers of military hardware to African countries and to states in the vicinity, like Myanmar and Sri Lanka, to wean them away from the Chinese orbit; and, the cultivation of the ‘Tibet card’ to use against Beijing, involving covert and overt support for efforts to realize a genuinely ‘autonomous’ Tibet majorly vacated of its Han Chinese population, are some of the other actions India ought to take. This is the minimum necessary because nuclear crises with China are looming in the foreseeable future and India is simply not prepared for them.5

What to talk of nuanced notions of soft, hard, and smart power, the Indian establishment has not even come to grips with the nature of international power – what constitutes it and how to wield it for maximum returns. This is evident from the repeated turn away from power when on the point of realizing it. A facile explanation is that it betrays the classic under-achiever’s weak-willed instincts of withdrawal at the first sign of resistance.

Consider this. For the Indian decision-makers, the nuclear bomb is less a political or military instrument than an empty symbol of power. Having revealed the barest capability (altogether six tests, one of them a test in 1998 of a thermonuclear weapon design that fizzled, compared to 1,800 tests conducted by the US, some 800 tests by Russia, and 80 by China), the Indian political leaders retreated, thinking there was not much else to do except to await recognition by acclamation of India’s new, more enhanced, standing and for the world to hail the new player on the great power block.

Thus, after abandoning the 25 year-old ‘do nothing’ policy characterized by lassitude, procrastination and strategic confusion of the Congress Party, the Bharatiya Janata Party coalition government ordered a series of nuclear tests and before a substantive technical assessment of the tests was in, and despite a formal warning from the DRDO (Defence Research and Development Organization) that more testing was needed to certify the reliability of especially hydrogen weapon designs, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee announced a test moratorium on 28 May 1998 – a decision that was not any less inexplicable for having the qualifier ‘voluntary’ attached to it.


It was a replay of 1974 when, instead of moving full steam ahead with weaponizing the atom, Indira Gandhi shut down testing after only one test. Had India proceeded with testing and presented the world with a usable nuclear force as a fait accompli, the 1968 Non-Proliferation Treaty, then in its infancy and awaiting ratification by a host of countries, would have accommodated it as a nuclear weapon state.

Again in 1998, had an open-ended testing regime been ordered and persisted with to validate the performance of numerous thermonuclear weapon/warhead designs, and a strategic main force build-up ordered, India could have forced a radical overhauling of the skewed nonproliferation regime by manipulating the threat of fatally damaging it. If the rinky-dink nuclear operation run by North Korea can push the nonproliferation regime to the brink and Washington into fits, and Pakistan can leverage the A.Q. Khan-run nuclear black market to advance its national interests, imagine the havoc the well-oiled Indian nuclear programme with mastery over two fuel cycles (uranium and plutonium) and growing expertise in a third fuel cycle (thorium) can wreak and the returns on such a policy.

This attitude, earlier adopted by China, inspired fear and won it respect. But a fearful Delhi sued for peace and, to the immense relief of the nonproliferation lobby in the United States, sought accommodation. Instead of talking from a position of strength, India was back on familiar ground, with the BJP government seeking ‘strategic dialogue’ and beseeching America for handouts (‘advanced technology’, this time around).

What accrued was the nuclear deal that the Congress party government headed by Manmohan Singh finalized. There is seemingly no limit to which Indian leaders won’t descend in terms of sacrificing national self-interest and self-respect. By now the United States has the measure of Delhi’s downward shuffle. The visiting American Under-Secretary of State William Burns may have hailed India as America’s ‘critical global partner’ but no pressure will be spared by the Barack Obama Administration to ensure India’s compliance with its overarching scheme to zero out the global nuclear threat to the United States.

Ellen Tauscher, the hardline non-proliferationist and presently Under-Secretary of State, says she intends to have India (and Pakistan, Israel) sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (of which India is already an informal adherent owing to the no-testing clause in the nuclear deal), quickly agree to a Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (an expectation Delhi has fanned by putting the bulk of its natural uranium reactors that could earlier be converted for production of tritium and weapon grade plutonium and which constituted a surge production capacity, under international safeguards, again as a pre-condition for the nuclear deal), and otherwise to ‘cap, freeze and rollback’ its weapons programme and to eliminate its nuclear arms inventories, even as the US and, presumably, the other four NPT recognized nuclear weapon states retain, according to President Obama, meaningful nuclear arsenals. What remains unsaid is that a nuclear disarmed India can once again rely on America’s security policy and free-ride on its military apparatus.

Historical evidence reveals, unsurprisingly, that countries that free-ride also face decline, especially if they have no firm strategic sense of themselves. During most of the 19th century, the Royal Navy was the dominant force in the world, enforced the British writ, and kept out the European continental powers from the ‘new world’ of the Americas to prevent their plundering gold and establishing colonies in the Caribbean and Central and South America. In the event, the United States had a free-ride, security-wise, and unhindered freedom to firm up its control of its hemispheric backyard and the time to beef up its naval strength until the 1890s when the US had a globe-girdling oceanic navy, and could take care of its own business by itself (ousting Spain from the Philippines and the Caribbean).

However, the US escaped the negative impact of free-riding because in 1823, when the American Navy was no more than a few ships of the line, US President James Monroe staked out America’s expansive defence perimeter, audaciously enunciating his ‘Doctrine’ – that interference or intervention by any European power into the affairs of Central and South America would be cause for war. Absent a singular strategic vision for the country and the determination to realize it come what may, the end-result of India’s free-riding and a too tight embrace with the United States will be less exceptional.

Usually, free-riding begets strategic reduction of the country and a status as subsidiary ally – a fact well understood, for example, by Maozedong. When Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev, in order to dissuade Beijing from building its own nuclear-powered submarines, offered China the deterrent use in 1956 of a fleet of Chinese port-based Soviet submarines with nuclear missiles, Mao declined, asking rhetorically, ‘Whose finger will be on the trigger?’

Other states were in no position to protest and avoid the consequent diminishment. This happened with all the countries of Western Europe after joining NATO and to countries in Eastern Europe after being coerced into the Warsaw Pact. It happened to Japan and South Korea after coming under the extended US military cover, and to Israel and the Arab states, all of whom are American protectorates. And, nearer home, Pakistan became an expendable cog in the US foreign policy machine, its value up one day, down the next, and never far from being jettisoned for not complying with US diktat. If India does not mend its strategic outlook, policy and posture, this is the denouement India faces.


ramana
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby ramana » 01 Sep 2009 22:32

Was non-aligned India set up as a US patsy? Mkae some noises to attract the rabble rousers but do noting to harm larger US interests. The NAM seems to be a good way to make the disgruntled hang out and not make mischief by joing the other political groups.

Meanwhile X-posted....
brihaspati wrote:Pitroda's speech appears to be well-intentioned but he is no politician.

It would be natural to expect that the politicans would demand a "new approach" for increasing "liberal arts". Unlike in the USA, in India, recruitment and research - by which academic coteries are created and maintained - will continue to be influenced by the demands of political regimes. In science and technology, there is no room left for ideological manipulation of thought processes accroding to the needs of the ruling interests. Modern Indian elite in politics have failed to derive recruits from the technology and science group. Primarily because these branches survive on cold and hard analysis based on logic and is not pre-disposed to accept dogma.

The Congress government{its the secular elites} realizes that most of the contrary ideological voices it faces derive from people in science or technology origin. One just has to look at the virulent characterization of the diasporic communities for being "Hindu right wing fascists" and the exceptionally aggressive words used by the Thaparites against scientists or engineers in particular when such people bring in their logical approach to challenge the ruling regime's dogmas. (Looking at their language and viciousness, I sometimes wonder, how they could have survived as objective "academics" if they really had to fight it out in a "western" seting unless they were protected and patronized becuase of the important political role they play).

Liberal arts, supervised by Thaparite and "Leftist" coteries in education will be a means of ideological control and training of next generations of leadership. Moreover, such education could also be used to keep the general populations under firm ideological control and the myths so vital for the regime's existence.

JwalaMukhi
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby JwalaMukhi » 04 Sep 2009 16:27

X-posted...
Gandharva wrote:
Three Major Conflicts and India's Strategy --Eternal India --Sept-2009
by R.
Vaidyanathan
http://www.scribd.com/doc/19383801/Thre ... a-Sept2009

The good professor has done an excellent job, as always.
Currently, nearly 85 percent of India is self-employed and not employees of government or large companies. But the modernizers want wage employees since that alone will give power in the hands of the State as a regulator and the corporate as an organizer

chetak
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby chetak » 07 Sep 2009 13:23

Hari Seldon wrote:Book review of nandan Nilekani's Imagining India

Worthwhile read, IMHO.


Corporate focus

Business pehle, every thing else baad me!


http://www.dailypioneer.com/200734/Imagining-India-the-‘secular’-way.html

To go back to Mr Nilekani’s unfamiliarity with history and sociology, it would have been best for him to keep away from these. If he had struck to science, technology and business, he would have been authoritative. Then again, ignorance is one thing and prejudice is another. And motivated bias is worse. This the author first betrays in his book when he classifies India’s larger States into three categories: Dysfunctional ones like Bihar, Uttar Pradesh; more developed like Andhra Pradesh. Lastly, those economically advanced like Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra. But there is not even a mention of Gujarat, which is probably the fastest-developing of our States. Evidently, the writer wished to play safe with the secular elite. He does not forget the post-Godhra riots and goes out of his way to mention Qutubuddin Ansari whose widely published photograph showed him pleading for his life. Does not Mr Nilekani know that the CPI(M) took Ansari to Kolkata and gave him a job? And that he did not last there, returned to Ahmedabad and settled back happily?

On the other hand, Jawaharlal Nehru is the author’s hero. He has been discussed on 49 pages; the book comprises 531. He quotes from the great man’s article in a 1937 issue of Foreign Affairs which said that Indian leaders unanimously treated imperialism as the country’s enemy and national unity as the top priority! At the Allahabad session of the Muslim League seven years earlier Alama Iqbal had declared that Hindus and Muslims were separate nations. In 1940 came the notorious Pakistan Resolution at Lahore.


Suneet
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Suneet » 07 Sep 2009 16:19

viv wrote:
shravan wrote:Witzel conference on Rigveda in Delhi a farce
/quote]

So Witzel holds fort in his own mailing list (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Indo-Eura ... sage/12741) and Bhagwan Singh on vijayavaani.com. Shadow boxing :).

The sad thing is Witzel still gets invited to these conferences in India to share his opinion....he should be ignored. I guess that will take time.



Can you please state where we can find genuine sanskrit and translated version of vedas... i believe most translations by westeners are biased.

I wish to learn and understand vedas in their true form... please help and guide me to the purest source..

Rishi
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Rishi » 07 Sep 2009 16:27

Suneet, username changed from truthseeker to Suneet. If you want something else, please click on the Image button below and let us know.

Suneet
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby Suneet » 07 Sep 2009 16:41

Rishi wrote:Suneet, username changed from truthseeker to Suneet. If you want something else, please click on the Image button below and let us know.


thanks,
please suggest me most important readings according to you regarding future and history of India, and the biggest challenges it faces today and can face in future... please guide where to begin.

rkirankr
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby rkirankr » 08 Sep 2009 11:51


a_kumar
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Re: Indian Interests

Postby a_kumar » 09 Sep 2009 04:22

Old link.. maybe posted earlier.. but not sure.

Missionary Agenda of YSR

1. The GO portal is active only from February 2008, hence the data given is only of 1 year (ie., Feb 2008 to Jan 2009). Note that although vast, it is by no means comprehensive (ie., I have shown Govt 263.07 lakhs to Christian institutions. This amount is the minimum spent on them, not the maximum).

2. But even for a single year, an amount of 263.07 lakhs was given as aid to various Christian institutions.

3. More than 258 churches benefited from these grants for construction/renovation of churches.

4. An amount of 1316.54 lakhs was given as aid to various Muslim institutions through Wakf boards.

5. Not a single GO granting any aid to a Hindu temple can be found. This in spite of the fact that in AP, the Hindu temples are managed by the Endowments Ministry (put it simply they take all the money which the temples generate).

6. Govt takes away all the money which Hindu temples generate, but do not grant a single penny to any of its temples. It does not touch the money from Christian and Muslim institutions, but grants them huge amounts of money.


Reference :List of Christian Charities that got funds from Andhra CM


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