Saturday, September 28, 2013


An young man who was appearing for the Bank entrance test told me that if a question contained 4 options in which the last option is "None of the above", there is every probability that the fourth option is the correct one. The question is thought-provoking. The basic idea for a Multiple choice question is to give the examinee an immediate clue to recollect the relevant content from a number of topics which he had learnt. 
But I am sure that this will not work the way it is expected to, at least, in the case of an election polling. NOTA... today's addition to the endless world of abbreviations is perhaps the hot topic in India. The NONE OF THE ABOVE option will be added to the Electronic Voting Machine/ the manual ballot paper . As Supreme Court has decided to add the button in the Electronic voting machine , the option given to the voter is that he can send the message to the contestants that none of them are fit to enter the corridors of State Assembly / Parliament. In a country, where a major junk of the electorate  is lacking basic literacy, how they will understand the implication of choosing NOTA option, is still a question mark. Even, assuming that they know the implications, why should a person who will stand in the long queue, in hot sun, will opt to waste his vote by choosing the NOTA option. Or what purpose it is going to serve after emptying the huge heap of already lingering Indian Rupee in the mammoth election process, is anyone's guess!
In India, hardly about 50 per cent of the eligible voters use the voting rights. Out of these, majority of the electorate is going to be misled on the poll promises, as is seen in the past. A candidate, can win the election even if he or she could bag just one third of the polled votes, given the large number of political parties and ideologies. This being the case, I am afraid whether the NOTA option is going to improve the ethical standards of the candidates as well as the voters.
When Smoking is injurious to health, then just printing the slogan on the wrapper of a cigarette box will serve no purpose. When adult content is screened in TVs, advising children not to see the same will be a futile exercise. When the rapists are not severely punished, the crime rate will never diminish. 
Any lofty thinking, without the will to put a check on the evils in a civic society,  will bear no impact. I am pessimistic and the Honourable court's wisdom can not be questioned. As a law abiding citizens , it is just an apprehension. Let's see how this will have a mark on the thinking of the electorate. Assuming that the entire electorate rejects all candidates and choose NOTA option, what are we going to do? Or we going to conduct the election once again or President rule will be promulgated in the said constituency...Or a candidate who got just 0.05% of the polled votes but the rest opted for NOTA, what then are we going to do? Let's wait to see the Dance of Democracy! 

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Capital Punishment

Much hue and cry was raised against capital punishment, when Rajiv Gandhi killers pleaded for mercy. When Kasab or Afsal was hanged, again there was noise about death sentence, though it mellowed down later. True.. a heinous crime should not be met by a death sentence. The logic appears to hold ground also because when killing is a crime, the same is applicable to the state sponsored killing also. But let us think of crimes like Nirbhaya rape. How can we tolerate such inhumane acts? If stringent punishments are not given, there cannot be a deterrent to stop or at least control the acts. There is an argument, like the one raised by the defense lawyer of the accused in Nirbhaya case, that the death sentence will not stop the rape in this country. In a country with 120 crore population, the perpetrators of rape and murder are just a handful. Majority of the citizens are law abiding, either out of God fear or afraid of punishments. It goes without saying that our criminal code is well drafted that the crime level is less though still the same is formidable. I feel that the Capital punishment must be spelled in the rarest of the rare cases as is prevalent now. Where the people involved have indirect role or minor role, especially in a terrorist strike, like the one in certain decided cases, the court may consider the kind of mental torture and the long lingering of the criminals in the dark cells of the prisons. The idea is wherever the judiciary feels that there is a ground to prove the self realization, the mercy petitions could be considered at least, at the President's level.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Could Lord Krishna motivate Arjun?

I was in a training session and as usual, I started by presentation ....Since the presentation was on Banking and my trainees were freshers, I have always considered it by social duty to give the trainees some inpiring words in lighter vein. The paramount skill for a 56 year old trainer in such sessions is to come down to the level of the 22 year olds and remain connected to them during the entire session. During tea-break, a girl walked to me and said, Sir, you had motivated us... I too like this art... How should I do? Beaming a smile, I said " I think that I could just do some insiring talk and you guys accepted it because of my age and experience... perhaps... I doubt that nobody could motivate others. In fact I just inspired you or tried to build some confidence in you for shouldering responsibilities... I don't think that I could motivate anyone for that matter."  Perhaps this must have distrubed some other girl who also particiated in the conversation..

But I guess that this second girl was upset about my views. "Sir, I do not agree with you... anyone can motivate any other person, age or experience is not a criterion" she quipped. A bit shaken by her views, I recollected moments in my life, when I was humiliated by a much younger relative of mine ( who was known as good advisor 'but a bad follower') when she was motivaitng me to do something about which she had little knowledge. In Transactional Analysis (Games People Play) she may be named as LITTLE PROFESSOR. Life is a great teacher, and we get moulded by our transactions. Sometimes facts are incredible but inevitable...

The second girl who could not accept my views was later withdrawing as I saw her walking out.... But there was a studious boy among the audiance. He came to me a little later to share his views. He said, " Sir, you are correct, that other girl perhaps could not understand what you meant. Sir, Could I share my views with you...?"

I encouraged hime to go ahead. He  said  " Sir, In Kurushetra, when Mahabharat war was to begin, Arjun gets depressed on seeing his Gurus and kin in the opponants' camp... Lord Krishnji tried to motivate him, (we have the unique Bagawat Geetha with us now...) but Sir, depsite His motivation, Arjun remained agitated. Finally, Lord Krishna shows His Viswarup ( Giant Posture to make Arjun believe that He is none other than God).. this makes Arjun to surrender to His advice and rest is the Great Epic.. )

I was thrilled at the Boy's quote. He went on to recite a Sanskrit Quotation... I was shaken...

I totally realised that no one can motivate others.. at the maximum, one can inspire others to act.. Action is the Motion and Motion becomes the motivation. Perhaps the word "motivation" itself might have derived from the base word 'motion'

I was feeling fresh, thanks to that boy Praveen.. the act of performance is self driven. Intuition and some godly insticts motivate. The circumstances give the environment for taking a step.

A GREAT LEARNING EXPERIENCE for me indeed. Later on, after the class was over, some other boy sent an SMS requesting me to be his GURU. I just smiled and replied him "thank you my Shisya". But in my mind I was feeling great when I understood the essence of the Geetha.. " do thy duty"

I am determined, I will continue to inspire my GenNext.. if they are inspired, good , even if not, let me go ahead in my self designed social commitment. For me the Vishwarup was shown thro' Praveen...!!!!!

V Selvarajan

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

CRR cut - A change in monetary stance or a Market Tsunami??

Every time, when the RBI Governor announces the monetary policy stance, the market reacts vibrantly as if the sky is going to fall. The reality is that within a day or two, the stock prices come down deeply, leaving a few million innocent retail investors poorer. CRR cut was announced by RBI Governor after about 2 years, the sensex and Nifty curve peaked up, witnessing a steep raise. It appears as if money has flown from utopia. Is it a market Tsunamii? Indian market mostly behaves on sentiments.. not taking into account the reality always. When dust settles down, there will be aselling spree and the market prices touch sea floor  In fact, we will come to know our fate in a week or so. 

I have my apprehensions due to the fact that this time, there was no policy rate cut, which was a much awaited one, considering the mounting debt burden of the Industry, falling headline inflation rate etc. The Euro zone crisis is another cause for concern. Even though we boast of not being impacted by the Global financial crisis ( we always quote how we managed during US sub prime crisis.), the fact remains that the FDI and FII withdrawal of money had definitely impacted the economy to a greater extent. Our trade deficit also clearly indicates that we are affected on westerly disturbances. 

This time, RBI has announced CRR cut by 50 basis points which takes us to anew CRR of 5.5%. This means that about Rs 32000 But there is a little disappointment also because the market was anticipating Policy Rate cut. After continuously increasing repo on 13 occasions earlier, it was everyone's expectation that this time, there would be a Repo rate cut, given the downtrend in inflationary pressure in the system of late. 

CRR cut of course is a welcome step by RBI to increase money supply. But not coupled with a rate cut, may not be beneficial for the simple reason that credit off-take may not shoot up, if it is not linked to interest rates. More over, my expectation was that a policy rate cut which might have resulted in reduction of mounting debt burden for Industry. Nevertheless CRR cut is needed and of course a welcome structural change to the ailing monetary stance and is expected to improve the liquidity position. However a policy rate cut could have geared up Open market operation and cheered up Industry. 

CRR cut will induce Banks, especially Private banks to invest surplus in Bond market with an eye to improve NIM and Banks will definitely be happy, more so because FY end is round the corner . But their happiness may  be short-lived , since it will neither improve credit off-take, nor reduce debt burden, without a supporting repo cut. In any case,let us believe, there is a reversal of monetary stance, indicating GROWTH at the end of tunnel. 

Perhaps the way market has responded yesterday, if remains consistent, may pop up growth and bounce back the derailed Industry. As of now, the real impact of the latest monetary stance  is not visible. So...Retail market investors (aam athmi)...beware...and play safe...CRR cut is just a change in monetary stance... do not hurriedly make a decision... the time is yet to ripe...I guess. Let us watch Fiscal results, election results etc etc.....HOPING FOR A BETTER TOMORROW

V Selvarajan

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

"Karcha Paani"

The whole nation has shown solidarity with Anna Hazaare renouncing the arrest as anti- democratic, at this point of time, I would like to share some of my thoughts about corruption that is prevalent in all levels. Today the bitter reality is that corruption is deep-rooted in all walks of our life. Someone was saying that what matters today is to eliminate corruption in top level.. i.e., Rupees in Millions & Billions only matter.... why do you bother about small ticket bribes? I was shocked to hear this.

Who is corrupt?
Can it be said that it involves politicians or beaurucrats who expect monetary favours. Shall we exclude those in the Govt departments expecting say Rs 500 /Rs 1000 or so for small favours like moving your file or getting a signature within that round stamp? Or one can be charged with corruption only if he or she has committed an act of accepting a huge financial favour.. 2G or CWG or so on !!!"

I don't think that we can exclude those who are expecting Karcha Paani (small favours) also from the definition of corruption. Therefore friends.. India is afflicted with the fatal disease of corruption at all levels, it is in Intensive Care Unit .... otherwise do you think that there would have been this much support to Anna.

Today everyone of us is knowingly or unknowingly a victim to the corrupt practices prevalent in our society ... Let all those who are raising slogans to day in high pitch in their anxiety to bring out the Jan Lokpal..touch their heart to question whether we are all responsible for this sorry state of affair or not. Why should one pay that extra bucks for getting a Driving License? Why should you get your property registered after paying to all the 'lesser Gods' and 'Greater Gods' I mean. the society in which we live includes our own brothers and sisters who work in Government offices ... and demand bribes on the one hand and on the other, they themselves are forced to pay extra bucks for their own personal works.. Let us awake at least now, thanks to Anna.... history will definitely adore team Anna, but then ....

Is it a Second freedom struggle?
Somehow right now, perhaps I am unable to equate the current anti-corruption war to the freedom struggle of India fought over 4 centuries. Neither I will equate Anna with Mahatma. What sacrifices we have made in this battle so far... How many valuable lives had been lost so far...? True that Anna is following the non violent path shown by Mahatma. Let us not forget one thing... This current war against corruption is waged against our own Government , accepted & elected by us... All along we have been silent spectators or if I put it other way around, we were part of it. and we are therefore accountable for all our silence all over the past 6 decades. It is not a QUIT INDIA movement either. We can not send these creed of Indians out of our country... They need to be corrected. Therefore wee have to wait and see the direction this battle against corruption is going to take. After all, India has discovered one Anna just a few months back only... let us not forget.

Who is going to be the watch dog.. Lok pal or Parliament
Let us not forget that the above issue needs to be sorted out. If Lokpal is the authority to book the corrupt, who will be accountable for their failures. If Parliament is accountable, to whom they should be answerable.. Is it Lokpal or Elected Body which will be superior, and if Lokpal fails, or we going to wage another war against corruption. Who is going to elect the Lokpal.. will there be nepotism to the hot seat.. if so what is the guarantee that the lokpal will work in letter and spirit for which it is chosen

Will the corruption end?
The political parties may pull down each other by supporting or opposing the Lokpal Bill in their only mission to capture or remain in power. If Anna's movement gains momentum and ends in bringing a tangible solution to the question of corruption, yes.. it may be able to bring freedom against Corruption. It is just a beginning of a long drawn war... the mass moment against corruption should go on... irrespective of who is in the helm of affairs.. the lokpal bill is not an end.. it is just a via media... then only the SOCIAL EVIL could be routed. It is like BLOOD CANCER... deep-rooted in the souls of all ... top to bottom... we are party to it, let us accept it.. for we allowed it.. accepted it ... made it a way of life...

The day we will hoist our tri-colour free of any strains in it, we can think of writing in indelible ink as SECOND FREEDOM STRUGGLE. Until then, let us think about ways to curb corruption .. nothing else friends...

V Selvarajan

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Social Networking - a bane or a boon

When I was conducting a training session, I stressed the need for making good presentations. Some of my trainees were impressed. They wanted to do something. I gave them a topic for 5 minutes for making presentations. They agreed. The topic was as given above. Social networking - a bane or a boon. Motivated by my encouragement, the presenters did a good job burning their midnight oil.

1. It is a useful effort to stay connected
2. In today's context, it is difficult to meet, net helps us
3. I can choose my Girl Friend
4. Good time pass...

1. Personally I am against
2. Hacking is a threat
3. False friendship possible
4. It will develop loneliness
5. Potential for misusing

The debate concluded by agreeing that
"Social network is good if we know our limitations"

My thoughts

While I have a mixed feeling I am happy as well to listen to what all my young friends think. I do agree with all their perceptions, It is good to keep in touch with people we know. In fact my school mate Sethu came into my contact after a few decades ... thanx to facebook, and the best part is he sent me a school photograph of mine, which he clicked when I was in my SSLC.... I was extremely moved when I float back to the bygone era. Now I am 56 and the photo was taken when I was 16. Just imagine what face book has done for me. This is what you are seeing in the photo below...

For everything there are 2 views. But why should we look at the ugly part of it. Let us enjoy life and the happier moments. My friend is about 3000 Kms away from me, but still I feel close to him , Thanks to the modern gadgets, we didn't have all these things when we were young


myself at 16 , 4 decades back........

Friday, August 12, 2011

Dear Friends,

I started blogging two years back, but somehow, I stopped making any posts, may be lethargy is the only excuse. Any way I now think of continuing the blog, to express my thoughts again, let me see whether I will be successful this time

V S Rajan