Archive for April, 2011

Our poor MPs below the Poverty Line

This is a sample of the concern and sensitivity of our MPs who are below the poverty line for the aam admis whom they represent. We should not grudge them their subsidized subsistence. Let the cheapest eatery continue. Who pays for this subsidy-the aam admis.After all, day in and day out the Congress under the leadership of Mrs Sonia Gandhi weeps and beats their chest for aam admis.

Hence this cheapest eatery in the world is the Indian Parliament canteen where our below the poverty line representatives of the starving aam admis are served their food.Apart from this they have sitting and standing allowances! This to keep them energetic while debating on aam admis. More is to come when we look into their salaries-their fringe benefits-Above all this these below the poverty line MPs naturally cannot afford to pay the water taxes and the electricity charges so that too the aam admis who do not have potable water-who need to trek for a pot of water and who do not have electricity pay the bills of the MPs.That is justice-the Indian model. After all they are our leaders and should we not help them survive to fight our battles while keeping  us subservient, dumb, gullible waiting for the freebies(according to a big mouthed MP of the Congress one must not call it freebies-they are essential needs-does the gas stoves, the free color TVs come under essential commodities?) Three cheers to our below the poverty live MPs and the puppet of a Prime Minister who cautioned the babus that the public will not tolerate graft. He is wrong- they more than tolerate because their understanding of development is the wave of the dirty HAND-the magic wand to shoo away poverty. Numbers of those below the PL have reduced I wonder of the MPs have been included in this count.

Dr Mrs Hilda Raja


Parliament Canteen’s Menu Card

Can you imagine a vegetarian thali lunch for Rs.12.50 or a katori (small bowl) of dal at Rs.1.50, and chapatis for a rupee each at a time when the prices of essential commodities are touching the sky?

Yes it is possible, even if food is getting out of the reach of the poor in the country. Welcome to the Parliament House canteen – where delectable dishes will never act pricey.

A series of catering units run by Indian Railways at Parliament House, including at the library and the annexe building, serve food at rates which are a good decade old but are hard to digest for a newcomer.

MPs, who are seen shouting at each other and castigating the g overnment over the rising food prices, definitely relish the cheap canteen food. But, mind you, the facility is not for them only. Parliament staff, low-paid security personnel and accredited journalists too enjoy the delicacies at rates which an ordinary citizen outside cannot even think of.
Dal, considered to be the poor man’s food in India and which is now getting too expensive to even fit his bowl, costs just Rs.1.50 for a katori.

Low rates make the desserts sweeter. A katori of kheer at Rs.5.50 will never taste bitter. So will a small fruit cake at Rs.9.50 and a helping of fruit salad at Rs.7.

If you want to have soup, enjoy a bowl full at Rs.5.50, and for a heaped plate of cooked rice you need to shell out just Rs.2. Dosa is available at Rs.4.

And, yes, a cup of piping hot tea is available for just Rs.1 — not in the canteen but along a parliament corridor at a tea board.

Where does this come from? Remember, behind the cheap commodity the re is a subsidy. All this costs the government a huge amount of tax payers’ money.

The gap between the actual cost and what MPs, journalists and others have to pay, is bridged with a food budget set aside by parliament.

“Over Rs.5.3 crore has been allocated during the current financial year for the canteens. The Lok Sabha pays some Rs.3.55 crore and the Rajya Sabha shares the amount to over Rs.1.77 crore,” said an official.

“Not only MPs, we serve food to everybody who is allowed inside parliament. They also include workers, gardeners and labourers,” the official told IANS, defending the low prices.

The food prices were last revised in 2004.

A 15-member joint parliamentary committee on food management headed by then MP K. Yerranaidu of the Telugu Desam Party was constituted in 2005 to consider revision of the rates and the service.

“The committee didn’t give any report and the rates were not revised,” the official said.

During the just-concluded winter session, on an average “3,000 people were served lunch in the canteen daily”, a caterer said, but strongly pleaded anonymity as “we have been told not to speak to the media without permission”.

Parliament House Canteen Food Rates

Tea Re. 1

Soup Rs.5.50

Dal – one katori Rs.1.50

Veg thali (dal, subzi,4 chapatis, rice/pulao, curd and salad) Rs.12.50

Non-veg thali Rs.22

Curd rice Rs.11

Veg pulao Rs.8

Chicken biryani Rs.34

Fish curry and rice Rs.13

Rajma rice Rs.7

Tomato rice Rs.7

Fish fry Rs.17

Chicken curry Rs.20.50

Chicken masala Rs.24.50

Butter chicken Rs.27

Chapati Re.1 a piece

One plate rice Rs.2

Dosa Rs.4

Kheer – one katori Rs.5.50

Fruit cake Rs.9.50

Fruit salad Rs.7

April 25, 2011 at 11:32 am 14 comments

The Congress at its old tricks

Rahul Gandhi lives in a fantasy world. He does not have substance and when he utters something it is mostly out of focus and out of reality. When he takes a swipe at the age of V.S.Achuthanandan the CM of Kerala and reminds people that when the next  election comes he will be 92 he forgets that his mother Mrs Sonia Gandhi went to canvass for the young Karunanidhi who will be 92 when the next elections come! Not only his mother-but Manmohan Singh and the whole Congress are batting for MK because of his youthfulness! And it was there for everyone to see how MK has to be wheeled round-still Rahul Gandhi bats for him but takes a swipe at the age of Achuthanandan. What is sauce for gander is also sauce for the goose. Anna Hazare started a movement and here we have a 40 plus Rahul Gandhi zig zag across the country with his foot in the mouth. Why had he not started a movement against corruption with his youth power?

Manmohan Singh says that the UPA is against corruption and wants to weed it out. Yet he was hibernating most of the time and at other times he suffers from amnesia and simply looked on when the country was looted. Starting from the Bofors down to the Common Wealth Games, Cash for votes scam, the Adharsh scam and the 2G spectrum scam the Congress was just blind and pretended that everything was fine. When one after another scams began to tumble down even then we had sweet promises that the law will take its course while the CBI and other investigating agencies were reined in. This is the Congress while talking of Lok Pal goes round the country supporting and canvassing for the corrupt parties and individuals. So where is the guarantee that it will fight corruption? What is the guarantee that it is sincere in the Lok Pal Bill?

It will not be surprising if the UPA takes the credit for bringing in the Lokpal Bill. Already indications are there when Pranab Mukherjee questioned why the BJP led NDA did not bring in the Lokpal Bill At least the BJP did pass it in its cabinet only that the government fell .What did the Congress do all these years and how can it fault the BJP led NDA? At least sitting in the Opposition did the Congress  make a hue and cry for the Lokpal Bill. It did not,because how can one expect the Corrupt Congress to make such a demand. Be it black money and corruption the Congress led UPA has been forced by the people’s movement and a determined Opposition to bring these to the fore. The dirty Hand is being forced; now it is at its old game claiming to be the champions of fighting corruption. Even Manmohan Singh has stooped to a low level and does not bat an eye to lie-when he stated that the UPA wants to fight corruption. The simple fact remains that the UPA’s regime saw the maximum scams and the massive corruption blur and blot the image of India. Now nowhere to run and hide it seeks the very Lokpal Bill to cover itself. Shame on the Congress! The whole world knows how corruption was abetted in its regime and the whole world knows how it took people for a ride and the whole world    knows that its regime will do down in history as the worst corrupt period in the annals of this country

To me the solution is simple-throw the Congress out and the corruption will automatically get thrown out. To keep the Congress in power and to fight corruption is not possible. To think that we have in Rahul Gandhi the next Prime Minister is sheer nonsense. He cannot utter two sentences coherently and he has double standards-has no sense of history and is myopic. Is it his birthright to be the PM? It is this question which must have been nagging Manmohan Singh when he directed the query to Advani. This we call projection. We have another instance: when congress candidates have been denied tickets for the ensuring elections in West Bengal but Pranab Mukherjee’s son has been given a ticket and those denied tickets were rebellious the FM asks: ‘Is it their birthright to be given tickets?’ Is it then the birth right of his son to be given a ticket? This kind of differentiating people the ‘we’ and the ‘they’ are reflections of anti-people and anti-democracy mindset. ‘We’ have the divine right to rule while ‘they’ are condemned to be ruled is the crux of the problem with the Congress and that is why democracy is given the go by and civil society has taken over. Anna’s movement will not die. The nation is watching every move of the Congress and this time will not to be allowed to be cheated and taken for a ride. Neither will the Congress get the credit for fighting against corruption and /or going at the black money stashed in tax havens for in both these fronts it has failed the nation miserably

Democracy has been misused and abused The Constitution has been raped for the last 64 years so let not people now with vested interest talk about democracy. Starting a movement is legitimate and is within the parameters of democracy. But in the name of democracy using Parliament to loot the people-accruing power and financial clout-violating the constitution and all that it holds on Equality is no great operation of democracy. Parliament had lost its sanctity when bags of money were poured before the Speaker-when Buta Singh used the sacred precincts to buy one vote with a suitcase of money-when criminals sit as elected representatives of the people where is the sanctity of Parliament? Votes are bought with people’s money, used for freebies this is no election and elected parliamentarians. They have bartered democracy and sold it for thirty pieces of silver. The betrayal of democracy by the Congress is total and complete. Now simply because the going seem to be tough with awareness seeping into society we find the Congress and others becoming champions of democracy. Democracy cannot have a prince in waiting to be crowned-Democracy has no divine right for anyone family least of all the Gandhis-to even talk of such things is like tolling the death knell of democracy

Dr Mrs Hilda Raja,


April 13, 2011 at 5:31 am 20 comments

First political voices speak

Politicians will now rise as one man to pick at the movement to fight against corruption and its struggle. They will create fissures-both real and imaginary to see that the Movement against corruption fizzles out towards this all kinds of constitutional and legal objections are raised..
“The first political voices speak”-let us analysis just five of these objections raised by political voices:-

1-Cause is just they say but method is fascist. Then would they say that Gandhiji a fascist? Non-violent method as fast to death is not fascist.

2-Self selected cannot dictate. Who are the MPs and how are they elected? Freebies at the cost of the people’s money are given in exchange for votes-Can that be called elected? How was the Prime Minister selected? Was he an elected candidate? For that matter most of the important posts are given to handpicked persons. Naveen Chalwa the former CEC was appointed in spite of his predecessor pointing out his bias, and he was also known to be close to the Congress. His trust was given money form the MPSLADS. Inspite of objections raised the Congress went ahead and appointed him. The same can be said of the ex-CVC PJ Thomas. Even when one of the selectors of the panel raised objections he was posted –till the Supreme Court had to intervene and take up the case against the appointment.

3-What is wrong with the civil society having more than fifty percent of the members in the drafting committee? The objection raised is that Parliament cannot be bypassed. The objection is valid but there is a precedent What about the National Advisory committee? Does it not comprise NGOs and civil society? Only difference is they are all pro-Congress and handpicked by Mrs Sonia Gandhi Who is Harsh Mander and Aruna Roy? How can the NAC whet national schemes and advise the Prime Minister? Is it equivalent to the Group of empowered ministers? How is the chairperson of this NAC given the status of a cabinet ranking?
So the votaries of democracy again are raising sound and fury but there is no light. These votaries are the ones who demean and defy democratic norms.
Democracy calls for consultation and acceptance of inputs from the Opposition-Does the Congress and the likes of RJD Raghuvansh Prasad Singh and Mohan Singh raise any objection when the NAC brought forward the NREGA? Who is the NAC to chalk out national schemes and Rahul Gandhi meeting the PM to request its implementation in a larger number of districts? Why were these democracy votaries silent then? Is it because Mrs Sonia Gandhi chairs the NAC? Why are the MPs paid while the NAC draws schemes like Food security Bill? Is this constitutionally valid?

4-Talking of democracy when people were starving-when rodents were fed and inflation struck at the pits of the stomachs of aam admis these MPs were enjoying three course and four course lunch and dinners served at subsidies rates. Is that not a shame on democracy? Take the menu card from the MPs canteen and one will be shocked at the abysmal low cost of food items served. Why should the MPs be served subsidized lunch, dinner and tea/coffee at the expense of the poor aam admis.Is it not shameful? Are they below the Poverty line. This is a disgrace and now they become champions of democracy? Is this again a constitutional norm?

5-When there is a dual power centre round which the whole GOI revolves which is an open secret how can they talk of democracy? Are the people’s wishes/aspirations being even articulated in Parliament?
Now that they are concerned and feared to be hounded the ministers and the powerful politicians are shielding themselves with democracy-something which they allowed to be demeaned, dented and even bypassed. Under the UPA1 and UPA2 democracy had/has been even replaced by an oligarchy system. Vested interest people are no democrats. What we have today is no democracy. Let these politicians not continue to take people for a ride.
Dr Mrs Hilda Raja

April 8, 2011 at 6:00 am 7 comments

Corruption a way of life for the UPA2-Get rid of the scourge

Corruption a way of life for the UPA2-Get rid of the scourge

Hazare rejects Pawar’s offer to quit GoMs and rightly so .The GoMs consists mostly of corrupt persons. Anna Hazare has entered the arena to fight corruption at the right time. He has become the public articulation of the silent suffering people.There will be a ground swell of support for him because people have been waiting –waiting for a leader to surface .This is just not a fight against corruption but against the corrupt politicians who like bandicoots have been gnawing at the very roots of democracy.This is a freedom struggle-freedom from being exploited and freedom from the evil designs of the politicians who have meshed together to demean and degrade Bharath Mata and her children.

It is relevant to note that corruption has become a way of life and it also gives the impression that it is an eligibility criterion to become powerful politically and socially. This is a disgrace and an indictment of the UPA 2-the whole scam covered UPA 2 is headed by Manmohan Singh who tries to give an appearance of honesty. Then why has so many scams taken place?. Why has no body been punished? Is it not strange that till date not a single person has been sentenced and thrown in jail for corruption? Nobody’s ill-gotten wealth and the loot have been till date confiscated. What’s the purpose of conducting investigation and dragging these for years to be forgotten soon? The investigations follow the guidelines laid down by the UPA2.All the central investigation agencies are humble and subservient handmaids of the UPA2.These are used also to settle political scores. An indication of this is the government’s rejection of U.U.Lalit’s appointment as prosecutor in the 2G spectrum scam. A small technicality -that he should have the necessary (7 years) experience of having worked under the Union of India. But the same UPA2 did not go into the technicalities in the appointment of the ex CVC-PJ Thomas. All goes to show the bias and the prejudicial slant of the UPA2.Is it small wonder then that the Government of India with its jaundiced views are no more trusted.

It is then not shocking that from the skies-(the faked licenses of pilots) right down to the bowels of the earth (in mining) it is a massive spread of scams. The PM pretends that he sees nothing, hears nothing and naturally does nothing. The whole fault lays with the dual power centers. Right from the time when Mrs Sonia Gandhi with her well camouflaged ‘renunciation’ drama took over the reins of power handpicking the PM to be a puppet things have gone from bad to worse. Never has India become so sinking and stinking with scams and yet Mrs Sonia Gandhi goes about canvassing as though everything is fine and she wants to come back to power! Look at her allies-the DMK which is one of the most corrupt parties in India-Sharad Pawar known more for his corruption and his ill gotten wealth. Without these two Mrs Sonia Gandhi is out of power. Hence for power she is bent on supporting them.On one side Manmohan Singh and Mrs Sonia Gandhi want us to believe that they are keen on tackling corruption but on the other hand they both are convassing and garnering votes for the corrupt and with the corrupt.

Yet her son Rahul Gandhi goes about saying that it is only under the Congress that corruption is being tackled. He does not know what he is talking about. First it is only under the congress that so many scams erupted. Second- is only after the Opposition took up the issue and fought it out that some semblance of action is being undertaken. Was the black money not stashed in tax havens for years why was the Congress inactive? The Congress is not bothered because it has only one point agenda- to stay in power. The back money belongs to the people of India but the Congress sheds crocodile tears for aam admi while abetting the aam admis to be looted.

Hazare could not have chosen a more appropriate time. India is stinking and sinking under scams. Most of the politicians- right from the top, down to the bottom, are corrupt except for a few. It is fair that Hazare should keep out politicians. Not only Hazare but not a single person trusts the politicians to really fight against corruption because that would mean fighting against themselves.

The first action to be taken if the MPs are to be believed then Parliament must roll back the 5 crores given under the MPSLADS to each MP. There starts the corruption. People’s money is simply handed over to them without even finding out what the aam admis think of this distribution. All those with criminal background must be denied a ticket or barred from contesting any elections. How can criminals fight against they own crimes?
The fact that criminals are sitting as MPs is because they want an immunity to continue their reign of corruption and to escape arrest. The Ministers and MPs are first and foremost citizens of this country and should be treated the same-the same laws and procedures must be followed. Why should they enjoy immunity because of their status? While a small pickpocket is apprehended and thrown in jail-these big looters are covered with immunity and loot the people. There seems something drastically wrong with our justice system

Hence to fight against corruption all the corrupt persons in Parliament must be weeded out. The GOI and its spokespersons coolly state that the Jan Lokpal bill against corruption must be something which everyone agrees on. This is strange logic. Criminals will not agree for action against them.Why the ‘all’ should embrace both corrupt politicians and the honest people. One side stands the perpetrators and on the other side the victims. No justice can come out if both the perpetrators and the victims are clubbed together. Hence to fight against corruption the corrupt politicians must be kept out. It makes strange reading to find persons like Sharad Pawar, Alagiri and others in the panel. That itself revealed that the GOI was not keen to fight corruption.

Take the specific case of Hasan Ali Khan. The government says that his tax dues is about 37 percent of the total tax collection of the country. What had the GOI been doing so long? Whose benami is he? If the GOI cannot tackle one single individual and arrest him-charge him and get the case under a fast track and throw him in jail and confiscated his assets ;how can we trust the country to this the UPA2 which suffers from inertia and which is incapable of handling one man? The Prime Minister is accountable for all this. His mask has been torn asunder. If he is incapable of just this one act then it is a great joke that he engaged himself in cricket diplomacy. The Pakistanis must be having the last laugh. Our inefficiency and inability is so obvious. Both Manmohan Singh and Mrs Sonia Gandhi stand exposed and indicted in this great corruption scam abetment.

A final word about the Congress spokespersons: It is sickening to listen to their views-loudmouthed-they do not even give a chance to the others to air their views. Of these special mention must be made of Mani Shankar Aiyer,Manish Tiwari and Jayanthi Natarajan. Instead of joining with the opposition and condemning corruption they try to shout them out and then reel out the corruption that they dig out in BJP ruled states or during the regime of BJP. All corruption need to condemned and tackled. One would expect both the UPA2 and the Opposition to stand united in this. But it seems like a debating society –listening to the panel discussion on the different channels-each one trying to throw at each other some scam or other and justify which was greater than the other. It is not in scoring points and expressing to the viewers who was more corrupt that the solution lies. The Congress must realize that such a stand will not wipe out corruption nor does it justify the raining of scams? The end result is the Congress is seen as abetting scams and justifying it. Hope the Congress spokespersons are listening.

One thing the UPA2 must remember -that at no point of time has the GOI been so corrupt and seems also to justify it. It uses words and words and all the vocabulary at its disposal either to justify this or to take away the sting by pointing at Yeddyurappa!! This is its sin and a mortal one. The people have lost confidence in the Congress and its way of life –corruption. Hence Anna Hazare is right in not accepting government’s fake assurances.

Anna Hazare we are with you. The nation is with you-go, go ahead and save India we shall stand by you till the end

Dr Mrs Hilda Raja,

April 8, 2011 at 2:14 am 2 comments


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