A Nation on the March

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shyam
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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby shyam » 20 Feb 2009 10:58

The local gym in Bay Area, Supreme Court on Mathilda, has bollywood group exercise on Thursday evenings at around 7:30 PM. It is funny to watch a number of women and men practicing Punjabi/Hindi songs. The tutor looked like a Hispanic or ABCD lady.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby svinayak » 22 Feb 2009 05:51

Saturday Interview
Hospitality Begins at Home in the Family Palace

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/21/busin ... ity&st=cse
Calliope Karvounis
By PERRY GARFINKEL
Published: February 20, 2009

PADMAJA KUMARI MEWAR straddles several worlds — old and new, East and West.

She was born into a family of Indian royalty, maharanas who call themselves “custodians” over the region surrounding the city of Udaipur in India and who trace their lineage back 1,500 years through 77 generations.

But both by choice and necessity, Ms. Mewar, 29 years old, and her generation seem increasingly removed from the insular wealth and privilege of their ancestors. Ms. Mewar said in an interview that she “could have chosen to live a very luxurious lifestyle without lifting a finger,” but following the entrepreneurial leads of her father and grandfather into the global business community proved too compelling.

She moved to the United States to complete high school at Northfield Mount Hermon School in western Massachusetts, then earned a degree in international relations from Tulane University. She went to work as an events coordinator at Burlington Capital Markets in New York and from there, the Four Seasons New York, where over two years she worked her way up from the front desk to special services liaison for the hotel’s top 100 guests.

Ms. Mewar returned to Udaipur in 2006 to join HRH Hotels, a collection of about a dozen resorts and former Mewar family palaces and hunting lodges that was founded by her grandfather. She lives with her parents and brother in the centuries-old family palace.

Ms. Mewar is now joint managing director of the hotel company and travels extensively to promote the chain.

Though India’s tourism economy suffered after the attacks on Mumbai in November, the country is still ranked first in the world for 10-year growth potential by the World Travel & Tourism Council. But Ms. Mewar said she was pursuing new markets to expand the family business.

Q. You come from an upbringing in which you must have been served hand and foot, and yet now you’re in the hospitality industry serving others?

A. Hospitality was not and is not a business for us; it’s a way of life. Historically, my family has been the official welcoming committee for visiting dignitaries. But it’s erroneous to think I grew up spoiled. Yes, we had privilege but our parents taught us very early that with privilege comes responsibility — thus “custodianship.” My late grandfather, Maharana Bhagwat Singhji, established a charitable foundation in 1969 to preserve the region’s heritage and develop better local educational infrastructure. My father, Shriji Arvind Singh Mewar, added health care and support for regional crafts and arts, recently involving the Getty Foundation in our preservation initiatives. I am forging new associations with local nongovernmental organizations, such as Alakh Nayan Mandir, a medical institution dedicated to eye care, and Seva Mandir, a group advocating women’s rights. The rewarding part is when people come up to me when I visit their centers, they just want a hug. I have the means. But it’s the human connection that gives my support meaning.

Q. How do you compare the styles of service between India and the West?

A. Service isn’t necessarily part of the culture in the West. It has to be taught. In India, it’s in our DNA. We learn it in our nuclear families from the earliest age. On the other hand, Westerners deliver a kind of seamless service I admire. You don’t see the waiter refilling your glass but it gets done. In India, sometimes you feel everyone hovering over you — until you need something, that is. It’s something I am very conscious of as we train employees who work more and more with our international guests. Working at the Four Seasons job, I saw Americans get things done because they are clear and simple. They know the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Indians tend to solve problems in a more circular fashion but are beginning to see there are more efficient strategies.

Q. What are you doing to respond to the double whammy India is dealing with now, between the global economic downturn and any reduction in travel to India due to the attacks?

A. At the trade show I just came from in Madrid, I was heartened to hear that people are still keenly interested in and fascinated by India. Surviving the attacks has actually increased people’s appreciation of our fortitude. But hearing the reality of the slowdown in Europe and the United States, I came home more committed to exploring and opening new markets. Diversifying is the key these days. That’s why next month I am going to Germany and Russia, two segments with vast potential that we have not fully tapped.

Also, I feel well positioned, even through these times, because of the growing trend of authenticity, a word that’s already in danger of becoming a cliché in the hospitality world. Guests know the difference between brand-new hotels built to look like 200-year-old palaces and actual 200-year-old palaces turned into hotels with modern amenities and history that’s palpable everywhere. Hospitality is like fashion. Both thrive on changing styles and tastes. But our kind of authentic is timeless.

Q. How do you explain the dichotomy between the perception and the reality of India, between the booming economy we read about in headlines and the India that many in the West saw for the first time in “Slumdog Millionaire”?

A. Yes, there is poverty. Yes, there is illiteracy, overpopulation and massive traffic. We are dealing with them the best we can. It’s another cliché, but India really is like the proverbial blind men and the elephant. It all depends on what part you touch, what your perception is. The reality is we are like our famous biryani dish, a mix of spices, rice, and vegetarian or non-vegetarian.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Nitesh » 22 Feb 2009 13:05

http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/00 ... 221155.htm

Delhi Metro gets UN certificate for preventing carbon emission

New Delhi (PTI): Adding yet another feather to its cap, Delhi Metro has become the first rail network in the world to get a UN certificate for preventing over 90,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide from being released into the atmosphere, doing its bit to fight against global warming.

The certification report, given by Germany-based validation organisation TUV NORD which conducted an audit on behalf of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change Change (UNFCCC), found that the DMRC stopped the emission of 90,004 tonnes of carbon dioxide from 2004 to 2007 by adopting regenerative braking systems in the metro trains.

"The UN certificate was given to the DMRC for preventing over 90,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide from being released into the atmosphere by deucing its power requirement, thus contributing to the fight against global warming," Delhi Metro spokesperson Anuj Dayal said onSunday.

Under regenerative braking process for which DMRC earned carbon credits, whenever trains on the Metro network apply brakes, three phase-traction motors installed on them act as generators to produce electrical energy which goes back into the Over head Electricity (OHE) lines.

The regenerated energy that is supplied back to the OHE is used by other accelerating trains in the same service line, thus saving overall energy in the system as about 30 per cent of electricity requirement is reduced.

The DMRC saved 1,12,500 megawatt hours of power generation by restricting and reusing power on its trains through regenerative braking, thus saving the emission of 90,0004 tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere from 2004 to 2007.

It is estimated than in 2008, 39,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide were prevented from being emitted and this figure will increase to over 100,000 tonnes per year once phase-II of the Metro is fully operational.

The DMRC can also claim 400,000 carbon credits for a 10-year crediting period beginning December 2007 when the project was registered by the UNFCCC.

The money available from the sale of carbon credits will be used to offset the additional investment and operational costs incurred due to the implementation of the project activity, to stimulate research and development activities by DMRC to develop technology to reduce emission of green house gases and to give extensive training to train operators for optimum regeneration.

Delhi Metro is the first railway project in the world to be registered for carbon credits by the United Nations. It is also the first rail network to have a museum on an existing station. The Delhi Metro Museum at the Patel Chowk station was inaugurated on January 1, 2009.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby ASPuar » 26 Feb 2009 11:20

Good news indeed! Nitish Kumar is really turning Bihar around as a state.


No slowdown effect, surplus Bihar budget

26 Feb 2009, 0509 hrs IST, TNN

PATNA: The state government has urged the Centre to announce a stimulus package for the state to meet the rising expenditure. It, however,declared there is absolutely no impact of the global meltdown on Bihar and its tax collection has increased.

This was announced by deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi while presenting the Rs 47,446-crore budget for the year 2009-10 in the state assembly on Wednesday.

Modi, who also holds the finance portfolio, said the budget has a revenue surplus of Rs 6,122 crore and the government will not be required to take loan for meeting expenses on salary, pension and interest.

“The budget for 2009-10 is a budget of revenue and primary surplus, where fiscal deficit is being contained within the limits prescribed by the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act. This revenue surplus would be used for investment in physical infrastructure and generating productive capital assets like roads, buildings, power, schools, health centres and irrigation schemes,” Modi declared in the assembly.

He claimed the budget is likely to achieve two important debt management landmarks. “The public debt to gross state domestic product (GSDP) ratio would be brought down to 30% and the ratio of interest payments on revenue receipts would be brought down to just under 10%.

This is an important achievement as it would make Bihar one of the lowest indebted states in the country and improve its credit rating and help it borrow at cheaper interest rates,” he said.


Modi reminded that the size of the state plan had increased from Rs 13,500 crore to Rs 16,000 crore in 2009-10, of which Rs 2,899 crore will be spent on SC/ST component scheme and Rs 1,299 crore on women-specific schemes.

About the impact of the economic slowdown in the world and in India, Modi said the country’s growth rate, which had reached 9%, has slumped to 7% and the loss in the revenue might be to the tune of Rs 47,180 crore. As a result, the state share in central taxes will decline and Bihar’s share is feared to be cut by Rs 2,000 crore in 2008-09.

He also referred to the implementation of Sixth Pay Commission recommendations and said the state is presently spending Rs 11,405 crore on salary and pension which is expected to go up to Rs 16,000 crore in 2009-10.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Neela » 26 Feb 2009 19:08


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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby parikh » 26 Feb 2009 20:00

NGPAY wins WEF award

Please dont ever key in your credit card on that application.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby wasu » 28 Feb 2009 14:51

The changing countryside
The rise in the share of industry and services of rural GDP is a welcome development
http://www.business-standard.com/india/ ... 21/350304/
...
There are several reasons for welcoming the diversification of the rural economy. It indicates, for one thing, that the robust performance of the manufacturing and services sectors in recent years has not been confined to the urban areas and has percolated through to the semi-urban and rural areas as well. The diversification of job patterns also indicates reduced dependence on agriculture for livelihood, a shift that is particularly desirable when over 50 per cent of the population lives off a sector which accounts for just 18 per cent of the country’s overall GDP. As such, this bodes well for poverty alleviation as well. Equally significantly, it could help curb migration from rural to urban areas and thereby ease the pressure on cities that are struggling to cope with the influx.
.....

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby SRay » 02 Mar 2009 09:14

India Retains Optimism and Growth [nytimes]
While most of the world grapples with a crippling financial crisis and a recession, optimism reigns in much of India as its economy continues to grow.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Baljeet » 03 Mar 2009 02:00

ASPuar wrote:Good news indeed! Nitish Kumar is really turning Bihar around as a state.


No slowdown effect, surplus Bihar budget

26 Feb 2009, 0509 hrs IST, TNN

PATNA: The state government has urged the Centre to announce a stimulus package for the state to meet the rising expenditure. It, however,declared there is absolutely no impact of the global meltdown on Bihar and its tax collection has increased.

This was announced by deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi while presenting the Rs 47,446-crore budget for the year 2009-10 in the state assembly on Wednesday.

Modi, who also holds the finance portfolio, said the budget has a revenue surplus of Rs 6,122 crore and the government will not be required to take loan for meeting expenses on salary, pension and interest.

“The budget for 2009-10 is a budget of revenue and primary surplus, where fiscal deficit is being contained within the limits prescribed by the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act. This revenue surplus would be used for investment in physical infrastructure and generating productive capital assets like roads, buildings, power, schools, health centres and irrigation schemes,” Modi declared in the assembly.

He claimed the budget is likely to achieve two important debt management landmarks. “The public debt to gross state domestic product (GSDP) ratio would be brought down to 30% and the ratio of interest payments on revenue receipts would be brought down to just under 10%.

This is an important achievement as it would make Bihar one of the lowest indebted states in the country and improve its credit rating and help it borrow at cheaper interest rates,” he said.


Modi reminded that the size of the state plan had increased from Rs 13,500 crore to Rs 16,000 crore in 2009-10, of which Rs 2,899 crore will be spent on SC/ST component scheme and Rs 1,299 crore on women-specific schemes.

About the impact of the economic slowdown in the world and in India, Modi said the country’s growth rate, which had reached 9%, has slumped to 7% and the loss in the revenue might be to the tune of Rs 47,180 crore. As a result, the state share in central taxes will decline and Bihar’s share is feared to be cut by Rs 2,000 crore in 2008-09.

He also referred to the implementation of Sixth Pay Commission recommendations and said the state is presently spending Rs 11,405 crore on salary and pension which is expected to go up to Rs 16,000 crore in 2009-10.


ASPuar
This is indeed great news. Even more heart warming is it started from Bihar. I will take this, print it out, B!tch Slap, Raj Thackrey. This will teach a lesson to this Punk A$$ B!tch-->Thackrey Clan.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Baljeet » 03 Mar 2009 02:21

vsudhir wrote:Tide turns in shocked Singur, own supporters tell Mamata to stop

Earlier, two representatives of Kolkata’s IT industry, Ranjan Basu and Suma Mukherjee, went down to Singur to reason with Mamata but were reportedly sent packing. Basu and Mukherjee are part of a group of IT professionals who recently ran a signature campaign in Kolkata in support of the Nano project.

“People want Tata to stay. We want to know why the problem cannot be solved through talks,” said Mukherjee.

“We never though that Mamata will drive Tata away,” said Malik, who runs a tea stall in the village. “The Tatas should not be forced to leave. The majority of the agitators are outsiders. They should stop the nonsense immediately. We need Tata here.”


Is this DDM-itis or is it for real? I hope it is for real. I hope that pointless posturing by netas is called to account.

Sad, that this ios the best Bengal could do as an alternative to the CPIM...


Vsudhir
I agree, Nothing will make me happier than getting both Chor Party and tri-mool party moron are kicked by voters and thrown out.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Vipul » 06 Mar 2009 23:15

'Micro' entrepreneurs achieve macro gains.

Mumbai: Till December 2008, all that Rajabai Gaikwad, a resident of Indiranagar slum in Kurla (West), did was take care of her husband and four children. Like most housewives who live in the city's slums, Gaikwad is illiterate, has never been employed and has never saved for his family.

In December 2008, Gaikwad heard of microfinance -- a term that she still cannot pronounce -- for the first time. She teamed up with four neighbours, all housewives from her slum, and the women began a microfinance enterprise selling bags that they make.

The women make up to 100 bags per day, selling them for Rs2 each.

"We keep Rs 100 aside to repay the loan we took to finance this enterprise," explains Gaikwad. Once a week, a customer service provider (CSP) visits the slum and collects a predetermined amount, offering the women advice on running the business.

"I never imagined I could do this. I put in up to six hours of work a day and now contribute productively to my family's income," says Jayashree Katke, a 36-year-old slum dweller who is now able to afford her three children's education.

There are 150 such women's groups prospering in slums in Thane, Kurla and Kalwa, which make and sell bags, zari, toys and cutlery.

"Microfinance is a popular concept abroad as well as in rural areas. In urban Mumbai, it is risky to dole out totally unsecured loans to a floating population in the slums," says Anil Jadhav, chairman and managing director, Hindusthan Microfinance Pvt Ltd, which has successfully taken the risk. "Loans range from Rs5,000 to Rs25,000. While offering the loan, we conduct a three-day workshop where we train the women on how to earn and save and repay the loan," Jadhav say. Why women? "Because they have a better sense of responsibility," says Jadhav simply.

Hindusthan Microfinance Pvt Ltd, in turn, receives finance from leading banks in the country. On Monday, RBS Foundation India, formerly known as ABN AMRO Foundation India, launched four new tool kits in association with a well known international microfinance consultancy MicroSave, for emerging Micro Finance Institutions (MFI).

The tool kits comprise training material in key areas such as governance, internal controls, financial management and accounting systems, and will help MFIs with useful operating guidelines. "In the current economic environment, keeping credit open to poor women is critical. The idea is not just to equip them with finance, but also the knowledge to deal with finance and liability," said Meera Sanyal, country executive-India, ABN Amro Bank.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Atri » 09 Mar 2009 19:58

X-Posting from strategy forum

Every village should be provided with Road connectivity, 24x7x365 uninterrupted 3-phase electricity supply, clean water for drinking, irrigation and usage and telephone or mobile coverage.

GOI needs to do this...

1. Undertake the project of linking the rivers. It may be expensive but will pay immense dividends for eternity. Provide access to potable water for drinking and irrigation to as many villages as possible. extensive network of canals, lakes and rainwater harvesting techniques should be implemented.

2. Provide electricity to every village.

3. Bring entire India under mobile coverage/telephone linkage. Bring down the call rates and rates of dial-up internet.

4. Road connectivity to every village; increased density of railways, not just in Ganga valley, but also in peninsular India.

5. Provide PIN (Personal Identification Number) to every citizen and link this PIN to all the essential services like tax, opening bank account, insurance etc. Without PIN, there should not be any identity for an individual.

6. Once this is done, India will start becoming the processing hub of global knowledge related services. Furthermore, it will be a sustainable growth as people from rural India will find employment in Rural India and won't need to migrate to cities. The untapped domestic market will open up for industry which will accelerate the growth of the industry hundred-fold.

7. In long term, efforts must be taken to produce everything from biological sources or other renewable and recyclable process. This will be environment friendly. Secondly, quoting the view of Brihaspati ji, extensive network of fibre-optics should be laid in India to connect every village with high speed Indian Intranet. Of course, no need to block outside information, but having an extensive information network which is controlled by GOI will be strategically important in future conflict scenarios.

I guess, if at least first 5 points are fulfilled, nothing can stop India. Facilitate the controlled entry of private players in every thing else related to development. GOI should sit back and earn money.

India develops in the night, when government sleeps. Once GOI fulfils first 5 points, it need not do anything else.. India will progress rapidly on its own...


Please Visit this website for a proposal of economic reforms to be implemented in India. - http://www.arthakranti.org/

Proposed system by Artha-Kraanti - http://www.arthakranti.org/htm/proposed ... oposal.htm

One startling proposal made by this website is to withdraw all the currency notes above Rs. 50 from circulation. This will decrease the amount of Black-money in market.

In the initial transition period, people are likely to move to cash transactions rather than transactions through bank where the Transaction Tax is going to be implemented. Therefore, in a given time frame, the finance ministry / RBI must make provisions to remove the higher denomination currency notes from circulation. Say, within a year, the highest currency denomination should be Rs. 50.

With only low valued currency available for cash transactions, people will have no choice but to go for transactions through banks, thus helping boost the government revenue collection. All cash money in higher denomination will have to be deposited in banks within this time frame and will attract 2 % Transaction tax. Source of this money will not be asked.

With such High denomination currency available, Indian Economic trend is to avoid bank transactions, as it is very convenient to operate with cash. This practice has a very adverse effect on Credit Expansion Capability of the economic system.


Arthakranti Proposal for Empowered India - Part 1



Arthakranti Proposal for Empowered India - Part 2



Arthakranti Proposal for Empowered India - Part 3



Arthakranti Proposal for Empowered India - Part 4



People with time-crunch, please watch part 4 first. But, as far as possible, watch all the four parts.. It won't take more than 40 minutes..

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Dilbu » 09 Mar 2009 22:32

Chiron,
I saw the fourth part. If we are going to have a single point tax only for financial transactions what will be the effect on the income of a city and that of a panchayat? If govt is to depend completely on transactions to take place for earning revenue, wont there be a disparity of income at various levels of the govt. Especially so when cash transactions of smaller values are avoided from taxation? The part about getting black money back into the system sounds ok but the it is still unclear to me how this new system is sustainable in the long run unless we completely remove the existing system.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Keshav » 30 Mar 2009 04:01

The new fashion is Indian and its in. Don't know how many people were reading the "Civilization Security" thread, but it just goes to show how Indian culture will continue on in the new century.

Jai Ho!
http://www.telegraphindia.com/1090322/j ... 700209.jsp

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby archan » 31 Mar 2009 20:43

Super thin cellphone batteries in the making in Virudhunagar
MADURAI: Can you conjure a battery for your laptop
or mobile phone, the size of a SIM card and thickness of a paper? It would not only be mind-boggling but something like a Wellsian fantasy.

Well, you will not have to wait long to have these super thin miniscule batteries for powering your equipment. The work on producing such a power unit is underway in Virudhunagar district.

Kalasalingam University in Krishnankovil has been pioneering the project for ‘Development of thin film micro batteries for Information Technology’.

This is an Indo-Japanese joint research project, which is being carried out by Kalasalingam University and Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Mumbai...

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Ameet » 04 Apr 2009 09:49

Mini Global Champs - A clutch of smaller Indian companies has gone international by making a number of small acquisitions the world over. The best part: They seem to be working, unlike some multi-billion-dollar buyouts.

http://businesstoday.intoday.in/index.p ... 4&Itemid=1

* United Phosphorus: Agri Aggressor
* Rain commodities:It's raining cash
* Jubiliant Organosys: Crams caper
* Sintex: Labour gains
* Bilcare: Right place for the right price
* Bartonics: Raising the bar
* Rolta India:Mapping the globe
* Allied Digital: Remote control
* Binani Cement: Concrete gambit
* Plethico Pharma: Inorganic prescription

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Atri » 05 Apr 2009 08:00

Dilbu wrote:Chiron,
I saw the fourth part. If we are going to have a single point tax only for financial transactions what will be the effect on the income of a city and that of a panchayat? If govt is to depend completely on transactions to take place for earning revenue, wont there be a disparity of income at various levels of the govt. Especially so when cash transactions of smaller values are avoided from taxation? The part about getting black money back into the system sounds ok but the it is still unclear to me how this new system is sustainable in the long run unless we completely remove the existing system.


When most of the banking transactions are electronic, won't it be easy for tracking the flow of money?

This new system is sustainable as long as the practice of e-banking is popularized in rural India. There is no need to remove existing system, merely modify it. electronic transactions are already legal and viable part of system. The cash transactions enable us to bypass the governmental scrutiny and avoid the taxes. This type of transactions is facilitated by currency notes of higher denominations.

It is easier to bribe Rs. 100,000 in all 1000 rupees notes, than in Rs 50 notes. The transactions simply become bulkier. Furthermore, for those who are in fake currency printing business, it takes about Rs 39 to flawlessly produce one currency note, be it Rs 50 OR Rs 1000. hence, the guys involved in this business tend to print notes of higher denominations. If everything above Rs 50 is removed, the fake currency printing will become economically non-feasible.

As more and more people start using banks as means of transactions, more money will come within grasp of system and banks will have more capital. hence, loans will get cheap and this will boost the business. Furthermore, certain commodity like petrol, for example, costs different in different places. This system will bring about uniformity in prices.

The reason for so many taxes on everything in India is to bring maximum possible money from black market to white market. When most of transactions are through banks (because black transactions have been rendered non-feasible), there won't be any need of indirect taxation. govt can afford to abolish all taxes and start single point deduction at source.

The disparity you are talking about will reduce with time as this method percolates itself within the common masses. the 1-2% tax per transaction will be distributed among state govt, central government and bank itself. So, the disparity you are talking about won't matter in long run. The panchayats will get their money from state governments.. and State governments won't have to depend direly on central governments for funds.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Kakkaji » 05 Apr 2009 09:25

From dailypioneer.com. Posting in full:

Miracle called 108

An emergency medical service in Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Goa and Meghalaya has revolutionised health care in those States. Its success could bring political dividends this election season, writes A Surya Prakash

This is election time once again and you are certain to hear political experts pontificate on anti-incumbency and poor governance. Millions of Indians who are fed on a staple diet of cynicism by sections of the media would find it difficult to comprehend that good governance is a reality, at least in some States and that visible, and at times spectacular breakthroughs have been achieved in tackling hitherto unresolved problems. In other words, whatever the negative media may be dinning into your ears about the failure of the political class and the incompetence of the bureaucracy, the truth is that things are happening at the grass roots and the change is visible to those who are willing to cast away their political blinkers.

The best example of this is the comprehensive emergency response ambulance service that is now available in all parts of Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Goa and Meghalaya and is being introduced in six other States. This service, which operates with remarkable speed and efficiency, has been perfected and executed by a non-profit organisation called Emergency Management and Research Institute (EMRI) in all these States, and would easily classify as the most efficient public service programme in the country. Also, thanks to media skepticism, it is India’s best kept secret. People outside these States are largely unaware of the fact that it is bringing new hope to rural India and bridging the chasm between the villages and the cities at least in the area of emergency medical care.

EMRI was the brain child of Ramalinga Raju of the Satyam Group, who felt that India too ought to have an efficient and comprehensive emergency service like 911 in the United States. The non-for-profit organisation was launched in April, 2005 and Andhra Pradesh became the first State to ask for the service. Impressed by the success of the programme in Andhra Pradesh, Narendra Modi, the Chief Minister of Gujarat, decided in August, 2007 to operationalise the service in his State by March, 2009. But, as we are all aware, where there is political will, there is speed. Therefore, with Modi pushing it, the 400 ambulances needed to cover the entire State were operationalised six months ahead of the deadline — in September, 2008 itself.

Apart from Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat, the other States which have fully operationalised the emergency ambulance service are Uttarakhand, Goa and Meghalaya. In all these States, villagers say the ambulance reaches their doorstep in 15-20 minutes after a call to 108, a toll-free number, and takes the critically ill to the nearest civil or private hospital. This is a facility which even residents of Delhi and Mumbai cannot claim to have. Some other States which have taken the first steps to introduce 108 are Rajasthan, Karnataka, Assam, Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

States can get much of the capital expenditure needed for this emergency ambulance service through the National Rural Health Mission, provided they have a clear plan of action and pitch for it the way Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat have done. The cost per unit ranges from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 16 lakh depending on whether the ambulance is equipped with Basic Life Support (BLS) or Advanced Life Support (ALS) equipment. The running cost (Rs 1.25 lakh per ambulance per month) is provided by the State Government. The running cost of the present fleet in Gujarat is about Rs 60 crore a year.

Andhra Pradesh first secured 500 ambulances and later added 150 more to its fleet. EMRI has now been asked to augment the fleet further with 150 more units. In Andhra Pradesh, each ambulance handles eight cases a day while in Gujarat it is approximately five cases a day. Govind Lulla, COO, EMRI for Gujarat, Maharashtra and Goa, says, “The golden hour is critical in medical emergencies because 80 per cent of the deaths occur within that hour.” Hence the value of the ambulance, which reaches every nook and cranny of a big State like Gujarat or Andhra Pradesh within 15 to 20 minutes. BLS ambulances have oxygen cylinders, suction pumps, cervical collars for immobilisation of the patient, drips and measuring instruments to measure oxygen level in the blood, blood glucose etc. ALS ambulances have ventilators and defibrillators. They can take an ECG and transmit the same to the call centre where physicians work round the clock and advise the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) in the ambulance on pre-hospitalisation medication to be given to the patient. The ECG and the call centre doctor’s opinion is dispatched to the hospital where the patient is being taken, so that doctors in the emergency room in the hospital have sufficient information on the patient’s condition. The ratio of BLS:ALS is 3:1. EMRI handles 2,000 emergencies a day in Gujarat.

The figures for Andhra Pradesh are indeed mind boggling. The 108 call centre in this State has handled over 22 million calls during 2008-09 of which 1.7 million calls related to emergencies. Pregnancy-related emergencies topped the list with 22 per cent, followed by stomach aliments and abdomen pain (17 per cent) and accident trauma cases (16 per cent). Cardiac cases accounted for four per cent of the emergencies. In this State alone, 108 has saved over 40,000 lives until now.

Such is the efficiency of the system that sometimes it makes you rub your eyes and ask whether all this is happening in India. The system operates as follows: When there is a medical emergency in a village, the villagers call 108, which is a toll free number. The call centre directs the nearest ambulance to reach the village. It has an Automatic Vehicle Location and Tracking System (AVLTS). The physician (there are 13 of them at the call centre in Ahmedabad) decides whether to dispatch a BLS or an ALS to the scene. On reaching the village, the 108 crew get down to their task. Whenever necessary, the EMT calls the call centre, gets on line with a doctor and seeks his advice. He also arranges a conference call of a friend or relative of the patient with the doctor, so that everybody is in the loop with regard to the nature of the emergency and the course of treatment suggested by the doctor. There are 3,400 hospitals in Gujarat. By end of 2009, the Government plans to double this number and ensure that there are 7,000 hospitals in place. The emergency medical service is absolutely free and the ambulances take patients only to hospitals which have signed an MoU with EMRI for receiving patients and handling emergencies. In Gujarat, in the first 16 months, EMRI has handled more than 4.25 lakh cases, of which 1.21 lakh cases related to pregnant women being rushed to hospitals.

Every ambulance has a pilot and an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). The crew is trained for 45 days.

The pilot learns about extraction of vehicles in accidents and dealing with similar emergencies. The EMT, who is a graduate in life sciences or nursing or pharmacy, is trained to deal with medical emergencies. Since this is a service-oriented activity, EMRI places a lot of emphasis on ethics and attitude. As Lulla says, “If the attitude of an applicant is not okay, we don’t hire him.” Members of the crew are not to even accept tips from people. Such is the training that the crew of an ambulance handed over foreign currency worth Rs 30 lakh to the victims of an accident after admitting them to a hospital. The car was involved in a crash while the family was heading to the airport to board a flight to Australia. The 108 crew took charge of their bags, cash and travel papers and handed them back to the family after admitting them in a hospital.

Those who step outside this ethical framework are fired. EMRI ensures quality and courteous service because of the autonomy it enjoys in its operations.

EMRI pays special attention to the recruitment process. Lulla says the catchment area is “good souls with right values.” Soft skills and value skills are as important as technical skills. Amit Desai, head, EMRI Gujarat, says the challenge is to get the right people and to train them. As Lulla points out, “This is not a Government job and those who join us must realise this. We tell them that if money is your objective, don’t come here.” EMRI currently has over 12,000 employees all over India. Desai says the employees like it because “they have the best of both worlds — corporate culture plus public service.” The emergency service runs like clockwork because of the hands-on approach of the management. Lulla, Desai and other top executives often accompany ambulances when on call and watch the crew at work. The training programme is designed to make the employees mentally strong and sensitive. “It is a combination of leadership, technology, innovation and research, which are the four pillars of the organisation,” Lulla says. “We want persons with passion, energy, modesty and reliability.”

The dedicated crew have made 108 a roaring success. This writer caught up with the crew of one emergency unit — Preeti Patel and Vyas Pratik, the Medical Assistant and Pilot of the ambulance — on the outskirts of Ahmedabad. Both of them do 12-hour shifts but women are exempt from the graveyard shift. The ambulance is well-equipped with several emergency facilities. It has disposable syringes and anti-snake venom, and equipment to deal with emergencies like drowning and poisoning. The crew also has a digital camera to get photographic evidence in medico-legal cases. This evidence is passed on to the police. All calls to the crew and from them are recorded and made available in medico-legal cases to investigators and courts. Both Patel and Pratik are happy with their jobs. They say there is a lot of job satisfaction because they are able to help people in times of distress.

Anyone traveling through Gujarat or Andhra Pradesh today can sense the positive vibes that 108 has generated in even the remote villages of these States. Villagers in Narmada, Mehsana and Gandhinagar districts of Gujarat and Srikakulam, Vizianagaram and Vishakapatnam districts of Andhra Pradesh, where this writer travelled to assess governance at the village level, swear by this service. Amazingly, although a “government service”, there was not a single complaint of corruption, bribery, inefficiency or bad behaviour of the crew in any of the villages of these six districts in these two States. This is indeed something extraordinary for a “government service” in India, but it is true. There is such an outpouring of public gratitude for this free and efficiently delivered critical health care service that it is certain to bring in political and electoral dividends for all the chief ministers who have introduced it. In that sense, this could be called a “108 Election” in Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Goa.

That there could be political dividends from good governance is evident from the responses of village folk in these States. Says Diheshchandra Kalidas Shah of Garudeshwar Village in Narmada district: “The ambulance is just a call away. It reaches our village in five or ten minutes. There is no payment to be made and there is no corruption.”

Mohammed Bhai of Chanwada Village in Rajpipla echoes this sentiment. “Just the other day there were several medical emergencies in our village. We called 108 three times and on all occasions, the ambulance reached the village in 15-20 minutes.”

Praise for the service is uniform across the villages of north Andhra Pradesh too. Sayamma of Kurupam panchayat in Vizianagaram district says that recently, when they called 108 even at 2 am, the ambulance reached the village in 15 minutes and rushed the patient to the General Hospital. Poovalapatti of Biyyalavalsa village in Vizianagaram district said that the fact that 108 is a toll free number added to the value of the service. “Even a person who is broke can call the ambulance,” he says. Jyotamma, secretary, Mahila Mandal, Durubili village, says, “Earlier we used to carry patients to the Civil Hospital, which is 7 km away. Now we have the ambulance in our village in 20 minutes.”

This is also probably the first “government” service that is free of corruption and inefficiency. Shikalu Ushansa Diwan, of Bunjatha Village in Narmada district says this of the crew of 108: “They are very courteous and efficient. There is no corruption and bribery involved. All are treated equally and with respect.” Ashwin Patel of Amjagaon in Gandhinagar district agrees. “We have no complaints. We have not heard of any kind of corruption or bribery. There is no problem with this service,” he says.

SK Goush, a social worker in Parvathipuram in north Andhra Pradesh, says the quality of the service is attributable to discipline among the crew. “Strict action is taken against erring 108 employees. Also, much attention is paid to maintenance. The vehicles are serviced regularly and the tyres changed after the mandatory mileage.” This is rather unusual for a “sarkari service” because even residents of big cities in India often see ambulances with flat tyres and in various stages of disuse lying in the courtyards or sheds of Government hospitals.

The most obvious spin off of 108 is the contribution of this quality emergency medical care facility in bringing down the Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) and the Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) in the States which have ensured State-wide coverage. This has further been dovetailed to the Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY), which seeks to encourage pregnant women to deliver their babies in civil hospitals or primary health centres. For example, in Gujarat, 3,800 babies are “108 babies” in that they were born in these ambulances. The State Government has urged rural folk to discourage “home deliveries” and to reach pregnant women to primary health centres and civil hospitals in time for delivery. Anganwadi workers, rickshaw pullers and many others have been roped into this scheme. They get an incentive if they call 108. This is helping the State bring down both Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) and Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR). The 108 crew also explains the advantages of the Chiranjeevi Scheme which offers a cash incentive of Rs 500 plus a saree to every woman who delivers her baby in an established medical facility. The villagers are told that by calling 108, they ensure proper medical care for the expectant mother and the baby. People in the villages of Gujarat say that while the cash incentive and the saree offered by the State is a major draw, rural folk have also realised that by going to the Civil Hospital they get proper medical attention both for the mother and the baby. The facilitators at the local level also get a cash incentive.

Yet another advantage of 108 is the remarkable boost it has given to the health care sector in Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat. The number of hospitals in Gujarat will double within a year’s time and Primary Health Centres and Civil Hospitals are getting upgraded. In Andhra Pradesh, 108 provides a crucial link between medical emergencies and Arogyasri, the health insurance scheme.

The third important advantage of 108 is the valuable data that it provides to health authorities, the State police and traffic planners on road accidents and accident-prone spots. It also offers valuable research data in a variety of other areas which help public policy formulation. It is therefore no surprise that India’s 108 is being hailed the world over for its extraordinary efficiency, social purpose and commitment and is being showered with international awards and accolades. So, if you belong to a State that has still not woken up to 108, do not despair. Make the best of this election season and extract a promise from the parties that seek your vote that they will introduce an efficient emergency medical care service. Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh may have got ahead of you but remember, it is never late to demand 108! Meanwhile, whether you like them or not and whether or not the media tells you what they have done in their States, do not be surprised if 108 brings in electoral dividends to YS Rajashekara Reddy, Narendra Modi, BC Khanduri and other chief ministers who had the foresight and political will to introduce an emergency ambulance service that would make us all proud.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Vipul » 11 Apr 2009 03:57


Neela
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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Neela » 18 Apr 2009 19:08

Didn't know where else to post this.


Dr. Vandana Shiva on "Open Seeds" movement.
What lucidity and brevity!

http://magazine.redhat.com/2009/03/20/video/

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby bart » 18 Apr 2009 23:29

Neela wrote:Didn't know where else to post this.


Dr. Vandana Shiva on "Open Seeds" movement.
What lucidity and brevity!

http://magazine.redhat.com/2009/03/20/video/


The occasional good presentation notwithstanding, she is a typical commie scum who tries her best to oppose any kind of progress. I wouldn't really associate her with this thread.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby vsudhir » 20 Apr 2009 22:01

Health care in India: Lessons from a frugal innovator

The rich world’s bloated health-care systems can learn from India’s entrepreneurs


Worthwhile read, IMHO.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Eshwar » 21 Apr 2009 00:01

bart wrote:
Neela wrote:Didn't know where else to post this.


Dr. Vandana Shiva on "Open Seeds" movement.
What lucidity and brevity!

http://magazine.redhat.com/2009/03/20/video/


The occasional good presentation notwithstanding, she is a typical commie scum who tries her best to oppose any kind of progress. I wouldn't really associate her with this thread.


bart,

I wouldn't go so far as to call her that. She does make some very good points and ultimately has the interest of India in her heart. I happened to listen to her interview in a local NPR channel. She was very informed and intelligent She is a patriot of a different kind unlike the actual commie sc**.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby vsudhir » 22 Apr 2009 04:51

Is this man for real or what? So much awesome stuff happens and we, otherwise aware, educated folks hardly hear anything about it - if that is not a conspiracy of silence by wholesale and retail dhimmedia, then what is??

I have given priority to the girl child's education. Every year on June 13, 14 and 15 my entire government goes to the villages -- and you are also invited to come along -- the chief minister, minister, chief secretary, secretary, IAS officers, all of us go from home to home and get the girl child admitted in schools. And today my state has 100 per cent girl-child enrollment. You don't think this is work?


In Gujarat we have the Chiranjeevi scheme -- in this nation everyone from the poor man to the President is against maternal and infant mortality. My government has formulated the Chiranjeevi Yojana under which every below poverty line mother will have her childbirth in hospital, I have started this as a movement, and done partnerships with private doctors. From 40%, today we have 80% to 85% of the deliveries happening in hospitals, thus we have saved the lives of many poor mothers and children. But you are not interested in this.


There is a saying 'justice delayed is justice denied'. Everyone knows of it, you do too. I have done three major things in Gujarat. I have increased court hours by 30 minutes every day; reduced court vacations by seven days; started evening courts with the same infrastructure.

We had 45 lakh cases pending from 2003-2004, to which 65 lakh new cases were added, making it more than one crore pending cases. After our initiatives, there are only 20 lakh pending court cases. Now my target is that by 2010, when Gujarat will complete 50 years, we will make it no-pendency. Cases will be disposed of in the very year they are filed.

You tell me, since Independence, in the field of justice delivery, has so much work been accomplished anywhere?

But, for news traders, these things perhaps are not saleable. Now you tell me if these things are pro-poor or not.


Wow. Bloody wow. The man knows how to get the system to work. I mean if this isn't fantabulistic mindboggling, what is??

Mind you, I'm no naive hillbilly who believes everything a neta says. These stats NM confidently reels out are easily tested. If NM is bluffing, his bluff can be called and given the energies and interests arrayed against him, it would have been called by now several times over.

The fact that dhimmedia is conspiring silence shows NM is on solid ground here. The fact that despite 5 yrs of UPAvaad, nobody could as much indict him with a even charge sheet proves their targetted slander against him is just that -slander.

And dhimmedia projects a Sri sri rahul ghandy against his achievements? What nerve masquerading as verve?!
Aakthoo onlee.

Link

Holy cow....I should bl00dy well copy-paste the entire interview...its chaubees carat sona onlee....

Q:No, we weren't talking only about Gujarat but that in India generally development is seen as benefiting business.

NM:Seen by who? Who are these people? Maybe something is the problem with their eyes. I have given you examples. My Gujarat has the maximum employment.


Q:You don't think the Manmohan Singh government has even one achievement after five years?

NM:I didn't say that. I am saying he did not fulfill his promises to the people. They said they will provide jobs to 1.5 crore people. Did they? They said they will reduce prices. Did they? They said they will repair international relations. Did they? What happened in Nepal? Why don't you ask these questions of them? They will have to answer, in a democracy.


Q:Isn't the nuclear deal an achievement?

NM:The issue is, India has uranium. Earlier the government would make budgetary allocation for uranium exploration. What was the reason for Dr Manmohan Singh, as finance minister, to make it zero budgeting for uranium exploration?

What was the reason when he became PM to halt research into uranium? And what is the reason for him enter into a restrictive agreement with foreign nations for the same uranium? Now the question arises.


Q:After the nuclear deal the whole world accepts India as a nuclear power.

NM:I am saying the world is accepting you as a nuclear power not because of the deal but because Atal Bihari Vajpayee dared America and went ahead with the nuclear tests. If we had not done it, who would have accepted us as a nuclear power?

If Vajpayeeji had succumbed to American pressure we would have been left high and dry and not become a nuclear power. This happened when India's leadership showed steel. Not because of some deal.


Q:Will you deny that you have no ambition whatsoever to become the prime minister?

NM: Ambition doesn't inspire me, mission does.

Q:What are the other things that drive Narendra Modi?

NM:Only devotion to Bharat Mata. That is enough for me.


Oh, awesome...warms the jingo heart.... sets it racing... Dekho dekho kaun aya....Modi, Modi!

Can't help but repeat - this is the man India awaits. Our tryst with destiny, the personification of every ideal of Bhaaratam. And I say this not on the basis of some lofty words (talk is cheap, after all), but demonstrated, testable rock-solid record. Beat that, ye psecs-commies-pinkos-and packees!

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby ashish raval » 22 Apr 2009 14:07

vsudhir wrote:Is this man for real or what? So much awesome stuff happens and we, otherwise aware, educated folks hardly hear anything about it - if that is not a conspiracy of silence by wholesale and retail dhimmedia, then what is??.


vsudhir, I had emphasized this many times in my earlier posts on the wide-ranging schemes he started which is never highlighted by any english media while only getting reported in Gujarati media which people of rest of India cant follow. This was the primary reason that NM in the past had decided to setup the blogs and websites which reports the work carried out by his government. My parents work in Gujarat state education department and I can hear from them how he has revolutionized the Government schools with huge amount of money pumped in each school to carry out innovative education. Can you imagine the effort and enthusiasm it takes to mobilize the "Government machinery" which is reluctant to take their legs off the table to go to "pee" forget about going to people and offer them the services. Another notable thing done by his government in early years was to weed out the most corrupted IAS officers. Favouring business is ultimately favouring common people because if these businessmen's setup more plants quickly and efficiently, more people will get employed and will ultimately boost state revenue, people's income as well as strengthen its position in business world. I dont see anything wrong in that. It is not that government gives "blind" go ahead to most polluting industries, industries exploiting workers etc. It is impossible in today's world.
Another fact is people of Gujarat are highly aware people. They have been working/trading around the world for centuries and knows the spine of every propoganda which is thrown at them. Moreover, NRG's have their extended families in Gujarat which keeps them in touch with everything which is happening around the world to malign their image. This was the primary reason that in recent elections they gave not just a slap but a a big bashing with a "middle finger" shown to english media. People are not stupid enough to not see the game played by media running around in shining vans during election trying to "blackmail" a state government with anti-state propaganda. "It only hurts you when you try to throw s*1t at a blowing fan" was the message conveyed by Gujarat electorate to english media. People of rest of India have also started seeing this game now. I hope they will not repeat it this time.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby AnimeshP » 22 Apr 2009 20:31

vsudhir wrote:Is this man for real or what? So much awesome stuff happens and we, otherwise aware, educated folks hardly hear anything about it - if that is not a conspiracy of silence by wholesale and retail dhimmedia, then what is??


Well vsudir saar ... even the dhimmi media is not able to supress the truth ... this is from the bastion of p-secs ... The Hindustan Times

The Prime Minister of Gujarat

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Rishirishi » 22 Apr 2009 21:36

g.kacha wrote:
vsudhir wrote:Is this man for real or what? So much awesome stuff happens and we, otherwise aware, educated folks hardly hear anything about it - if that is not a conspiracy of silence by wholesale and retail dhimmedia, then what is??


Well vsudir saar ... even the dhimmi media is not able to supress the truth ... this is from the bastion of p-secs ... The Hindustan Times

The Prime Minister of Gujarat

The 13-year-old boy jumped off clumsily from the adults’ bicycle on the village road, interrupting the reporter’s conversation with the farmer lugging the insecticide sprayer.

“Narendra Modi is the Prime Minister,” declared Vipul Kumar Valjibhai Shyanwa, returning from school in Moti Thori village.

Prime minister? “Of Gujarat,” he added knowingly.

Top business leaders Ratan Tata, Mukesh Ambani and Sunil Bharti Mittal threw a surprise recently by openly endorsing that idea, of Modi becoming the Prime Minister — of India.

So an HT reporter travelled 100 kilometres down a meandering highway to Ahmedabad to ask whether that should be so — travelling past sprawling cotton farms, refurbished villages, small industry hubs coping with the slowdown, past the new home of the Nano, the world’s cheapest car, to Ahmedabad, the city of wide roads, swank offices and gleaming malls.

Modi has bowed to Lal Krishna Advani and will wait his turn to be prime ministerial candidate. When that happens, his critics will raise the uncomfortable question of 2002, when his administration was believed to have looked the other way during riots that killed hundreds of Muslims and Hindus.

But the other face of Gujarat’s truth, rarely acknowledged outside the state, is that the charismatic Bharatiya Janata Party leader has over the years transformed governance in the state in ways unimaginable in most parts of India.

Government goes to the villages

Modi holds out lessons in governance for the rest of the country — IAS officials and farm scientists interact with villagers; agriculture is soaring due to check dams; depleted water tables are rising; a quick ambulance service is saving lives in villages and treatment costs in private hospitals are reimbursed by the government; every village is connected by broadband and soon by internet-enabled television; and homes get electricity 24 hours a day — something residents of India’s capital can be jealous of.

Several times a year, the 13-year-old boy gets to see a spectacle in his village. Officials come visiting. For three days in June, the government virtually moves to Gujarat’s 18,000 villages to monitor schemes, which the villagers are told about round the year by gram mitras (friends of the village), chosen from locals. Bureaucrats stay in villages and get eligible children — especially girls — enrolled in schools.

Ten-year-old Afsana Bano Umar Khan signed up. She now goes to school every day, and has a fascinating three hours’ experience on a new toy — a computer. Schools across Gujarat’s villages provide free computer education to children.

“One month ago, I saw a computer for the first time in my life,” said Afsana, a tea seller’s daughter, panting after she came running from her home at Chharodi village. “I am learning to type ABCD on it,” she said. “I want to go to school daily.”

Chharodi is a largely Muslim village but that has not dented its enthusiasm for Modi.

“There have been a lot of good things in Modi’s time. We get 24 hours’ electricity and a separate line gives eight hours of power in the fields,” said 35-year-old farm worker Fatahji Mungaji.

“Fancy Punjabi dress!” a shrill salesman shouted as he walked by, holding a stack of colourful salwar suits.

Murmurs in the land of the Nano

On the highway, as the morning became warmer, vehicles poured on to the streets, expensive cars driving alongside the colourful three-wheel motorcycle taxi, a Gujarat speciality.

The motorcycles taxis will soon have competition. They drive past a yellow sign announcing: ‘Nano Car, Project Site’.

The story behind the coming up of that sign near Sanand town entrenched Modi’s position as a favourite of corporate India. When the Nano project in Bengal collapsed, Modi showed decision-making rare among India’s political class. In four days he provided land to Tata and enabled their passage to Gujarat, beating other states vying for the project.

That doesn’t cut much ice, though, with Nitin Arwalla, 22, who sells car seat covers in Sanand.

“How do I care if Modi becomes Prime Minister or not? He has brought the Nano, sure, but only outsiders are going to get jobs,” said Arwalla. “Let him give us jobs, then he can be my Prime Minister.”

Angry youth? A few kilometres down, young 20-year-olds play with fire every day.

This is the private College of Fire Technology, where youth from all over India — and one from Dubai — train to be firefighters. With industrial giants swooping on Gujarat, there are lots of jobs coming their way.

“I had heard scary stories but Gujarat is nice. Things are so much better here. Our northern states should take lessons,” said Virendra Kumar, 20, from Patna.

Asked how many wanted Modi to become India’s Prime Minister, all hands went up in the class of 50.

“After the 2002 riots, he has improved upon the bad image he had. There was an impression that he discriminates against Muslim areas on the issue of development,” said 20-year-old Shahnawaz Thakur, who lives in Ahmedabad’s Jamalpur neighbourhood.

“But our roads are being improved and our footpaths are being developed. I think he is a brilliant person for running our country.”

Cars whiz by. The occasional camel-driven cart rolls along as well. After a smoking break at the roadside tea shop, young executives working for multinational giants set out on motorcycles to seek customers.

In Viramgam town, a row of swank corporate offices stick out on the dusty and bumpy roads. Private life insurance companies have battled it out over the past year. Private banks have ATMs.

Hardi Pankajbhai Shah, 21, is among the lucky girls of Viramgam. She got a job near her home, with a mobile phone company.

“There are few job opportunities here, especially for women. Most people go to big cities. But there is a higher education hub coming up nearby in seven years. Then things will be different,” she said, as she collected payment from a customer.

“I think Narendrabhai has a great approach to developing business. This will reduce unemployment,” she said. “He takes strong decisions and he does a lot of what he says.”

The store’s customers are mostly from villages, many of them in their 20s and 30s who love MP3s and caller tunes and buy phones of up to Rs 16,000 although this is not one of the very prosperous areas of Gujarat. For others, it is the every day things that make a difference.

“I get electricity, I get water. That is all I care for. Earlier there was no water — I had to pay Rs 300 per hour as rent to the landlord for water because he had the boring machine,” said farmer Rati Lal, his teeth blackened by tobacco. “Now I pay Rs 600 every year to the panchayat. See how much I save?”

That has been made possible by a check dam, one of the one lakh-plus check dams built across the state during Modi’s tenure, with 9:1 contributions by the government and villagers. It now returns to the farmers most of the rainwater that washed out to sea.

Migration back to the villages

There is someone else returning too: the migrant. “Many people are coming back from cities because life is better here and I saw on TV that there is a mandi [recession] in the cities,” said 40-year-old Tarsingh Bhai.

The interventions are showing results. Gujarat’s agriculture sector grew at 10 per cent over the past two years, compared to the national average of three per cent. The total worth of farm products shot up from Rs 9,000 crore two years ago to Rs 35,000 crore.

Twenty kilometres down, near Surendranagar, cotton fields open up on both sides of the road, near a small industries enclave run by the government. Noisy sweatshops lined along bumpy roads make nails and wires out of steel industry scrap, and build machines that help strip cotton balls.

A large number of small industries have shut down in the state as elsewhere in the country, and many of Gujarat’s 2.3 lakh units face a crisis. Expatriate Gujaratis are devising a plan to help small industries.

In a dimly lit office beyond a compound where hulky cotton stripping machines are parked, there is an unlikely discovery — Mansukhbhai B. Patel, 58, who invented them and holds Indian and US patents.

Patel is a Modi fan, the critical kind. “He is a good administrator, though it is not as if everything is hunky-dory. We are concerned that his support to big industry might squeeze us out — but maybe he will find a way,” he said, sipping tea. The cacophony of clanging steel and the grating of metal filters into the room.

“He should not become Prime Minister. He should remain the Chief Minister of Gujarat, otherwise he will have to worry about all of India, and not focus on Gujarat,” Patel said.

Back in Ahmedabad, in the Muslim hub of Jamalpur, RH Master, 61, smiles as he talks about the days when Modi used a bicycle and loved taking pictures on his Yashica 635 camera, just like him.

Master, who once sold milk, took to photography after flipping through glossy magazines at his shop and gave up everything to become a photographer who has won national and international awards. He is a devout Muslim.

“I think he is a good administrator. He will make a great Prime Minister,” said Master. “But I do not think he will agree to it, he will stay here as his heart is in Gujarat. And Gujarat needs Modi.”

I take the liberty to post the entire article. It was just such good news. Wonderful. But is it all true? Can someone verify the claims made?

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby gashish » 22 Apr 2009 23:20

Lessons from a frugal innovator

As the patient was chatting away, Vivek Jawali and his team had nearly completed his complex heart bypass. Because such “beating heart” surgery causes little pain and does not require general anaesthesia or blood thinners, patients are back on their feet much faster than usual. This approach, pioneered by Wockhardt, an Indian hospital chain, has proved so safe and successful that medical tourists come to Bangalore from all over the world.

This is just one of many innovations in health care that have been devised in India. Its entrepreneurs are channelling the country’s rich technological and medical talent towards frugal approaches that have much to teach the rich world’s bloated health-care systems. Dr Jawali is feted today as a pioneer, but he remembers how Western colleagues ridiculed him for years for advocating his inventive “awake surgery”. He thinks that snub reflects an innate cultural advantage enjoyed by India.

Unlike the hidebound health systems of the rich world, he says, “in our country’s patient-centric health system you must innovate.” This does not mean adopting every fancy new piece of equipment. Over the years he has rejected surgical robots and “keyhole surgery” kit because the costs did not justify the benefits. Instead, he has looked for tools and techniques that spare resources and improve outcomes.



Cheaper and smarter

This has attracted a wave of investment from some of India’s biggest corporate groups, including Ranbaxy (the generic-drugs pioneer behind Fortis) and Reliance (one of India’s biggest conglomerates). The happy collision of need and greed has produced a cauldron of innovation, as Indian entrepreneurs have devised new business models. Some just set out to do things cheaply, but others are more radical, and have helped India leapfrog the rich world.


We have seen stories with similar themes in telecommunication and other sectors...Inshallah, proliferation of "cheap and smart" business techniques in every sector of economy will one day thrust India into developed league.




But there is more to India’s approach than cutting costs. Its health-care providers also make better use of HIT. According to a recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, fewer than 20% of doctors’ surgeries in America use HIT. In contrast, according to Technopak, nearly 60% of Indian hospitals do so. And instead of grafting technology onto existing, inefficient processes, as often happens in America, Indian providers build their model around it. Apollo’s integrated approach to HIT has enabled the chain to increase efficiency while cutting medical errors and labour. EHRs and drug records zip between hospitals, clinics and pharmacies, and its systems also handle patient registration and billing. Apollo is already selling its expertise to American hospitals.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby negi » 04 May 2009 23:20

Amidst all this D&G TATA's are making some serious moolah.

Tata Motors rakes in Rs 2,500 cr from Nano bookings

Way to go ...

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Ameet » 19 Jun 2009 06:05

Special effects outsourcing grows in India

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/co ... 517_2.html

..........one of 18 special effects studios that worked on "Spider-Man 3," has billed as much in the first three months of this year as it did in nine months last year, he said. "In 2003 and 2004, when I would visit the U.S. and meet with visual effects companies, I'd be told we can't outsource it. It requires creative control and you are too far away," said Pankaj Khandpur, the company's creative director. Now, he said, those naysayers are telling him, "'Hey, let's talk.'"

sanjaykumar
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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby sanjaykumar » 19 Jun 2009 09:45

The first paper on high thoracic epidural seems to have been American in 2000. I am not sure Wockhardt pioneered it, perhaps adopted it would be closer to the mark.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby ashish raval » 19 Jun 2009 12:35

Ameet wrote:Special effects outsourcing grows in India

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/co ... 517_2.html

..........one of 18 special effects studios that worked on "Spider-Man 3," has billed as much in the first three months of this year as it did in nine months last year, he said. "In 2003 and 2004, when I would visit the U.S. and meet with visual effects companies, I'd be told we can't outsource it. It requires creative control and you are too far away," said Pankaj Khandpur, the company's creative director. Now, he said, those naysayers are telling him, "'Hey, let's talk.'"


Special effects is the monopoly of Hollywood since 1960's. It is butter and cream of their food without which they will only be as good as bollywood technicians. It is worth visiting companies which provide special effects to big blockblusters in Hollywood. I had visited one in London which by far had the best working environment I have ever seen. The interior was better than Taj in Mumbai and the free food/drink court/gym/theatre they had was mind boggling. These is sort of work environment which attracts the nerdy bunch of special effects technicians. Special effects is controlled by very dedicated bunch of people who will never allow any outsider let alone Indians to find out how things work. However, having said this, we have made big strides in special effects, however, we are at a primary level and have long way to go. We need crazy gamer type of nerds to be produced in India.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Vipul » 20 Jun 2009 04:46

IIRC Raja Ramanna's son was the earliest and biggest player in this segment.He had set up a big studio in Bombay.Since then a lot of new players have come up. Anil Ambani also has very big investment plans.

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Ameet » 20 Jun 2009 11:55

One Indian woman in top 10 richest women in the world list. She is at # 9 - Savitri Jindal, Non-Executive Chairperson of steel and power conglomerate O P Jindal group.

http://www.siliconindia.com/shownews/On ... 58155.html

She is the first and only Indian to feature among world's 20 richest women enlisted by Forbes.

When Savitri's late husband O P Jindal died in a 2005 helicopter crash, the subsequent transfer of wealth made her India's richest woman. Her net worth today is $6 billion.

The two top spots belong to Wal-Mart heiresses Christy Walton and Alice Walton with a net worth of $20 billion and $19.5 billion respectively.


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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby alok_m » 21 Jun 2009 12:48

While there does not seem any way to improve the public schools with truancy among teachers rampant, these unrecognised private schools are doing their job nicely and making some profit too.. way to go

http://www.city-journal.org/2009/bc0619lj.html

But while on a sightseeing excursion to the city’s teeming slums, Tooley observed something peculiar: private schools were just as prevalent in these struggling areas as in the nicer neighborhoods. Everywhere he spotted hand-painted signs advertising locally run educational enterprises. “Why,” he wondered, “had no one I’d worked with in India told me about them?
.....

The results from Delhi were typical. In mathematics, mean scores of children in government schools were 24.5 percent, whereas they were 42.1 percent in private unrecognized schools and 43.9 percent in private recognized. That is, children in unrecognized private schools scored nearly 18 percentage points more in math than children in government schools (a 72 percent advantage!), while children in recognized private schools scored over 19 percentage points more than children in government schools (a 79 percent advantage).

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Jamal K. Malik » 25 Jun 2009 18:43

Kurien’s Kiwi dream gets real
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Business/Kuriens-Kiwi-dream-gets-real-/articleshow/4698884.cms

Six decades on, the dream long cherished by India's milkman Dr Verghese Kurien to see that India one day exports dairy products to New Zealand, is coming true. Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), which markets Amul brand of products, is all set to export dairy products to New Zealand, the global dairy capital and home to Fonterra, world's largest dairy firm which controls almost one-third of international dairy trade. Though Amul's first consignment to New Zealand is only of 20 tonnes, the symbolism is causing excitement in the Indian dairy sector.


India exports dairy products to Nea Zealand
:) :) :)

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby rachel » 26 Jun 2009 03:17

Next stop: exporting coal to Newcastle !!

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Jamal K. Malik » 02 Jul 2009 20:13

India among top 10 world insurance markets
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/4729950.cms
Now,we are one of the top ten LIfe Insurance market :)

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Re: A Nation on the March

Postby Jamal K. Malik » 03 Jul 2009 23:39



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