08 August 2012

Nuclear Energy and India

Radiation is not a human made thing, it is a very much natural phenomenon. Many elements on this earth emit radiation. Some of them are natural. Some are manmade. Out of the naturally occuring radioactive substances, Uranium and Thorium are most important as they are the ones used for production of electricity. Till now the existing technology allows uranium to be used. But latest technology is being developed to use thorium in place of uranium as India has a large deposit of thorium.

Even our body has some trace amounts of Uranium.

Most of Indian continent comes under low to medium risk seismic zone. Compared to Japan this is nothing. Whole Japan comes under high to very high seismic risk zone but still produces 30% of its energy needs from Nuclear sources.

Tsunami occurs due to certain tectonic conditions and except some coastal parts in southern India, those kind of tectonic setting are not present around our country. So this fear is needless.

Japan is having such conditions still was running so many nuclear plants from last so many years and this is first incident after 30/40 years. Please remember that in this 30-40 years there has not been any major accident or deaths due to these reactors. Can you say this about any coal mines or thermal power plant in this world. For your information, the ratio between deaths due to coal and uranium is huge, if we do not consider nuclear bombs. That means in any year the number of people dying due to coal mine accidents or pollution due to thermal power plants is much higher than Uranium mines accidents (which are almost non-existent and Nuclear Reactor accidents). Please remember that in Japan, till now there has not been a single death due to the Nuclear Reactor acident. All deaths were due to earthquake and Tsunami.

Even after such a huge natural disaster and massive destruction their leaders and common peoples understand necessity of Nuclear power and slowly Japan is starting their Nuclear plants again after some preventive measures.

India also has nuclear power plants and they are running very well. Japan's accidents occurred due to tsunami. The Nuclear Power Plants in Japan are old ones and doesn't have latest technology. In India, we are using latest technology to build Nuclear Power Plants. So, the chances of getting affected by any natural disaster like earthquake or Tsunami is very less.

Nuclear waste should be the only thing to worry about in this type of power generation. However, this problem will arise 30-40 years after actual commissioning of the Reactor. Nuclear waste disposal is a very highly controlled and safe matter. At least it is much safer than the way coal ash or gases coming out due to burning of coal and petroleum are handled. Every year thosands of people die to lungs cancer caused due to noxious gases coming out of thermal power plants, vehicles using petroleum and other and other fossil fuel sources. No such problem can be attributed to Nuclear energy.

31 July 2012

Just a Bronze !!!!!!!

India has won a bronze medal in the olympics and there have been so many different kinds of comments on this. Some say it is a great feat, while others say it is nothing. Some say it is easy to comment but difficult to compete. How should we react to such a win? What should our thoughts be? Well, I do not know, nor do I want to suggest what everyone should think, but I can write down the thoughts that are crossing my mind just now.
Getting a bronze medal in the Olympics is not a very small feat. I do appreciate Mr. Narang's feat. However, it is Indian mentality to get satisfied with less. Our aim should not be just one Bronze. That should not satisfy us.
When I say that this is not enough, that we need to perform better, many of you may think that it is easy to comment but not easy to compete. I agree that it is easier to comment than to compete. However, we must not forget that players from other countries are bringing in lots of medals. Countries which are smaller than us, poorer than us, less populated than us get more medals. So what is the reason that Indian Players are sub standard? Where does India lack? Why can't a country of more than one billion population produce better sports persons or win more medals?

There are many reasons:
1. Our Players do not get good coaching, better sports facilities, good food, good accommodation etc from the sports authorities. Why? Because, we Indians are not at all interested in any other sport that cricket. When there is a cricket match, thousands of people will spend millions of Rupees to watch it. When there is any other sports, hardly any Indian will even see it in TV, let alone spend money on ticket. But another more important reason is the corruption that has pervaded into every sphere of Indian society including the sports arena.
2. Criticism is very much necessary. Criticism of teh players and also of the coaches, and most of all teh sports authorities and sports ministry. The Sports organisations and the ministry are the people who are siphoning off all money given for sports and enriching their own pockets. There should be sharp criticism of Indian Sports from every corner and every media. The very thought that "it is easy to criticize but hard to compete" shows that we are satisfied with low standard.
3. There is no sports culture in India. I have been to other countries. I have seen their youth. In other countries the young people love to play outside. In India our youth love to sit at home watching cricket on TV. If there is a Cricket match, half of India's population will be found in front of a TV set. Such a shame.
4. Cricket is the biggest reason our country is poor in other sports. Cricket has destroyed Indian sports, Indian culture, Indian Industries and Indian Workforce. It is the worst thing in Indian society after corruption. The reason why all other sports are neglected in India is the total support that cricket gets from the Indian Public. Instead of Cricket if we Indians give more support to other sports, our players will definitely bring more medals.

28 December 2011

The Caste System and its implications ... my perspective.

It was pointed out recently that the Ambani's are celebrating the 80th Birth anniversary of the pioneer Late Shri Dhirubhai Ambani by inviting Brahmins to their home. The programme, spread over two days, will witness elaborate pujas and other rituals at the family temple. It has been pointed out by some that in the Ambani household reunion feast, only Brahmins & Baniyas get invited. This has renewed the ageold controversy regarding caste system and its derivative, teh controversial quota system. I am giving here my thoughts on this matter.

Caste system should be shunned by all Indians. It is indeed an retrogressive and despicable social malady. But along with it should also go the caste based reservation system prevalent in Modern India. Why only blame the Brahmins? Just for a custom being followed by a family in Gujarat? The same caste system actually comes into play when quite well off communities like Jats claim OBC seat. In fact, the day this caste system used to benefit the Brahmins are long over ... a thing of last century. Now it is the privilege of the sarkari damads. Brahmins are at the receiving end of this fallacy for the last 20 years or so.

So, yes, I do want the caste system to end. and with it should end the quota system as well, which is nothing but disguised vote bank politics at its worst.

People who blame Brahmins for the caste system should not apply for reserved seats in Universities, colleges and govt jobs.

When someone goes to tehsil offices to apply for SC/ST or OBC certificates so that his/her highly incompetent children can occupy a college/university or govt job seat in a totally unethical and biased way, is that not caste system? Where does the sense of fairness go then? Why water the same caste plant so much when we think it is benefiting the Brahmins?

There is no shame in claiming SC/ST or OBC seats,no shame in claiming that "hey we are very backward and socially incompetent people, we need crutches to survive" .....

But there is anguish in thinking about how brahmins exploited the caste system in the last century. How, in some pockets, the caste system is still being exploited.

The same people, who claim govt protection from competency, constitute the so called Khap Panchayats which award death penalty to people if they fall in love, even at this age and day.

Yes, let us silence the so called "gun of the brahmins" and let us also at the same time, break the quota crutch.

It has been pointed out that the Ambani Family is no ordinary family. That they should set good precedents. I have my own thoughts.

1. Whether the family is extra-ordinary or ordinary does not matter. Why should ordinary people be exempted from social responsibilities? Social change will be brought about only when everybody starts following better social norms.

2. Why not start a discussion on the regressive vote bank policy and how everyone should boycott the quota system?

3. Brahminical dominance as I have already stated is a thing of past. There is no such thing as this except in some minor pockets. Atrocities in the name of caste, as you can see in all recent example,s have been perpreted by Upper classes who are not Brahmins for examples Thakurs, Jats etc.

4. The fact that Brahmins once were a privileged class does not give logic to unfair practice such as quota system. Infact quota in education is still understandable as it may increase the competency in the so called "unprivileged" class, but on what preposterous logic is quota in govt jobs based? How can anyone justify such injustice? such gross bias? If you are giving quota in educational institutions so that unprivileged class may get better education or access to education, why should you give quota in jobs after the same unprivileged class has availed of the subsidised and watered-down educational system and become "as competent as" a Brahmin?

5. Merit and Merit alone should be the criteria to be selected for any job, whether in Private or govt sector.

Everybody wants a piece of the cake called quota system. but no body is really serious about solving the caste system. Targetting the brahmins is not going to solve the problem. If someone is really serious about it, let him try to get out of the caste system in all its forms and manifestations, including the haloed quota system of Indian Government.

09 September 2011

Petrol Prices - A comparative study

There is an on going debate in Facebook regarding the petroleum prices in different countries and how the Indian Petrol price is more than that of neighbouring countries.

I found this comparison interesting and did a little bit of internet surfing on this matter to get some idea of what this is all about. Given below is what I found from the Internet.

There is in fact a website in which such kind of data is compiled (with necessary disclaimers of course) ... and hence I thought I would also incorporate the same disclaimers here ...

1) The data has been garnered from various sources on the Internet. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
2) The prices are not strictly comparable because:
(a) They cover different grades of petrol
(b) They cover a period of .... 6-7 months? ...
(c) Some prices are inclusive of local taxes, while others are exclusive
(d) Prices vary across different regions within a country (wildly ... seems it is a free for all, unlike
the price of other commodities).
(e) All the data on this page is gathered from internet. I did not go around to all these countries
gathering this data.
(f) I am not responsible for the accuracy of the data.
(g) If you detect any mistake, please let me know and show me the source of the correct information. Only then I may think of acknowledging my mistake.
(h) I did this unnecessary exercise just out of curiosity with no profit objective. I am not
responsible for any gains or losses of any kind that anyone derives from this page.

Now comes the Information:
All prices are in Indian Rupees
Notwithstanding the disclaimers, we get a fairly good idea of what the table means regarding the petrol prices.




% Deviation from India (petrol)



66 to 73

41 to 45


Over 40 per cent of the price of petrol is made up of taxes. While petrol has been freed from government control and is priced at market rates, diesel continues to be sold at government-dictated rates. Petrol prices have risen byabout 25 per cent since they were freed from government control in June last year.
The Government earned Rs 1.02 lakh crore by way of taxes on these items in 2010-11. Now where does this money go? May be we should ask this question to Mr. Kalmadi, Mr Raja, Mr Amar Singh etc.


46 to 47

51 to 52


No subsidy for diesel ?


47 to 50

29 to 32


Diesel is subsidised


65 to 70

47 to 50



60 to 65


Same as in India, Bhutan is better than India in the Transparency International's Corruption Index

Sri Lanka




08 September 2011

Literacy rate in India ...

Literacy has traditionally been described as the ability to read for knowledge, write coherently and think critically about printed material (source wikipedia).

The idea of Literacy in India has always been that of the ability to just scribble one's name on a piece of paper. Hence, this 82% (men) and 65 % (women) literacy rates (by itself these are low figures) quoted by government are nothing but delusions. What we consider Literacy in India are not real literacy. The moment someone is able to write one's name, we declare the person literate and add one more person to the "literate" population thereby increasing the percentage. This kind of literacy is another example of how much corrupt Indian society is.

It is no longer sufficient to consider whether a person can 'read' and 'write' some preliminary words (in India it is just the name of the person), and it is necessary to consider more meaningful aspects of literacy in education and in society as a whole, if we are to complete the transition from a backward country to a really developing country.

Rather than a meaningless literacy rate, we should have something more on the lines of "education rate" and count only those persons who are educated to a minimum level of matriculation. That would give a more realistic picture of India's state of literacy.

I think then the real Literacy Rate would come down to 20-30 %.