Saturday, May 22, 2010

Flags of Honour

I am indeed pleasantly surprised to see 'Appeal to locate War Widows in distress' in your blog. I am really grateful to you for giving it such a worthy publicity.
I am a retired Signals officer and now I joined this Charitable organization started last year by Mr Rajeev Chandrasekhar, MP and a successful entrepreneur (Also S/O Air Cmde MK Chandrasekhar (Retd)). I am responsible for all southern States in locating the War Widows and War Wounded Veterans in distress. Brig Abhay Bhargava, another retired Signals Officer, who is responsible for Northern States, is also functioning from Delhi since last week.
It is also nice to see our website in your blog.
Thanks and regards,
Brig (Retd) B Chandra Shekar, VSM.
Director - South, Flags of Honour Foundation.

The RMS Blog team assures all Readers that our efforts are for the Service of Veterans. Do keep writing to us of the work you are doing for Veteran Affairs and we will unfold your activities to our readers.

Circumnavigating world solo, first Indian comes home today

The Hindu: Online edition of India's National Newspaper
Saturday, May 22, 2010 by S. Anandan

— Photo: Special Arrangement
Enjoying challenge:Commander Dilip Donde on board INSV Mhadei.

KOCHI: On Saturday morning, as he steers his boat INSV (Indian Naval Sailing Vessel) Mhadei to a rousing reception into the Mumbai harbour, Commander Dilip Donde will be formally christened the first Indian to circumnavigate the world solo, covering about 21,600 nautical miles (38,880 km) under sail.

Vice-President Hamid Ansari and Navy Chief Admiral Nirmal Kumar Verma will witness the historic moment from INS Delhi as Mhadei crosses the finishing line. Later, Cdr. Donde will be given a ceremonial guard of honour onboard the aircraft carrier, INS Viraat.

While the entire country is ecstatic about his feat, Cdr. Donde feels “good” about hogging the limelight. “Though it really doesn't feel like one is writing history!” he said in a chat with TheHindu from his boat.

Cdr. Donde embarked on the Navy's daunting project ‘Sagar Parikrama' in 2006. “The project has gone on for a long time and there have been many challenges, like building a boat like Mhadei in the country for the first time [It was built in Goa] and then sailing through some of the remotest seas of the world. Each phase and leg had its challenges — bad weather, equipment breakdown, extreme cold or heat, etc. Each phase was interesting, exciting and challenging in its own way,” says Cdr. Donde, who, at 42, is a bachelor.

On August 19, 2009, the 56-foot sloop set sail from Mumbai on its first voyage. The journey turned Cdr. Donde into an avid blogger as he kept his burgeoning number of admirers posted with Mhadei's progress at

‘Best decision I took'

“The Navy was looking for a volunteer to take up the project. I liked the idea as it sounded exciting and volunteered without much idea of what I was getting into. Looking back, it was probably the best and quickest decision I took.”

On a solitary deck, Cdr. Donde encountered turbulent winds. He spent sleepless days and nights navigating the boat through choppy seas. When the sea was calm, he slept under star-studded skies. Close to shore, he snooped around, shooting pictures of marine life that had come calling on Mhadei.

At leisure, Cdr. Donde caught up on an interesting movie or a captivating book, chatted up acquaintances, enjoyed a delicacy or blogged at will. On the last and longest leg, he ran out of cooking gas and had to make do with canned food, resorting to innovative means of “warming things a bit using water from my heater that heats water to 60 degree Celsius, [relishing] lukewarm coffee, etc!”

On the voyage, Cdr. Donde made friends with Australian teenager Jessica Watson, who recently became the youngest person to sail around the world solo.

For a voyage to qualify as circumnavigation, it should start and end at the same port and cross all meridians (longitudes) at least once and the equator at least twice.

The distance covered should be more than the length of a meridian and the boat should not pass through any canal or straits, where use of engines or towing is unavoidable.

The boat should go round the three great capes — Cape Leeuwin (Australia), Cape Horn (South America) and the Cape of Good Hope (Africa). Mhadei has met all these requirements.
Circumnavigating world solo, first Indian comes home today by S. Anandan: The Hindu

Indian-origin scientists were part of new cell research
WASHINGTON: Three Indian-origin scientists are part of a team that has for the first time created a synthetic cell, controlled by man-made genetic instructions, which can also reproduce itself.

The 24-member team included Sanjay Vashee, Radha Krishnakumar and Prashanth P. Parmar. “We call it the first synthetic cell,” said genomics pioneer Craig Venter, who oversaw the project. “These are very much real cells.” Developed at a cost of $30 million by the researchers at the J. Craig Venter Institute, the experimental one-cell organism opens the way to manipulation of life on a previously unattainable scale, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Indian-origin scientists were part of new cell research

Empowering the National Consumer and Redressal Commission

Friday, May 21, 2010
Creation of two additional posts of Members in the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (National Commission) approved

The Union Cabinet today approved the proposal of creation of two additional posts of Members in the National Commission, one from judicial background and one from non-judicial background for the establishment of one additional Bench for a period of five years. This would not only enable early clearance of backlog of cases pending before the National Commission but also help bring about speedier disposal of fresh cases received in the National Commission.

Under the Consumer Protection Act, 1986, a three-tier Consumer Disputes Redressal machinery has been established in the country with the `National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission’ (NCDRC) popularly known as the `National Commission’, as the apex body at national level, State Commissions below it at State/Union Territory level and District Fora at the district level.

At present, the National Commission consists of the President and nine other Members, with five Benches set up in the Commission with a disposal of almost 88% of the cases.

The National Commission has been receiving around 450 fresh cases each month and the rate of disposal is 600 cases each month. Going by the present rate of disposal with the existing strength, the existing backlog of nearly 8000 cases can be cleared earliest by another four and a half years. NCDRC is also presently not in a position to fully dispose of cases within the time norms mentioned in the Consumer Protection Act. ****SH/LV/SKS
Creation of two additional posts of Members in the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (National Commission) approved

I injured my knee in a game of football on 31st December 1997. It was diagnosed as ACL TEAR. For that I was operated upon in the knee on 2nd March 1998. After the operation my knee developed stiffness, which is unusual in such cases even after undergoing physiotherapy for two months I was unable to bend or straighten my knee. So after two months of operation my knee was manipulated under anesthesia to relieve stiffness. A plaster was put on the knee for one month. I was told to start walking . I used to walk with a limp. For about 8 months I continued to walk with a limp but then my condition deteriorated & in March-99 I had to start using crutches to move around. To find out the cause of this pain I underwent investigative arthoscopy in June-99 which revealed the following 1. ACL Laxity 2. meniscus tear 3. patellofemoral osteoarthritis . I was advised by the doctor to do physiotherapy, and take painkillers for the pain, I am still doing physiotherapy, but neither the pain has reduced nor am I able to walk without crutches, this whole experience has affected my life badly. Can I sue the doctors for negligence / inefficiency. My both operations were carried out in military hospitals, and they were done free of cost since I am serving in army. So I can not go to Consumer protection court. Please advise?.
You can file a writ petition in the High Court of judicature against the hospital, making doctors responsible for your condition a party. You can also seek damages alongwith the appropriate action against the doctors and the management in the writ petition.
To read more of Sample Questions and Answers on consumer protection- click here

Do Indian Military Welfare Organisations like ECHS, CSD, AWWA, AWHO, AWES and the rest come under the Indian Consumer Protection Act and do they exhibit transparency in their functioning?
Click here for present status and views on Army Welfare Organisations
Can we tune up the Military Welfare Organisations?
Major D S Bisht (Retd) was commissioned into 7th Battalion, The Jat Regiment on 30 Jun 1963. Presently, he is working for Central Himalayan Institute at Dehradun which has been established to undertake studies for good governance and development to strengthen national security. His essay is thought provoking and if his suggestions are implemented it is bound to improve the morale of serving Jawans and the ESM.
Journal of the United Service Institution of India, Vol. CXXXVIII, No. 573, July-September 2008.
Welfare of Armed Forces Personnel by Major D S Bisht (Retd)

US warns Pakistani leaders their children could be terrorists

Hi Everyone,
This is from Yahoo Main Page.
Even the Pak Prime Minister's half brother, is a terrorist (notorious Headley)!! The Malice is too deep and must be arrested. Otherwise generations after generations of Pakistanis will become terrorists/ sympathisers of terrorists. The ramifications for US, India and rest of the world are quite clear. It is soo dicy to be friends with Pakistanis living abroad/ in Pakistan, even though we have ties of language, music, culture etc.
Harbhajan Singh
Lt Gen (Retd)

US warns Pakistani leaders their children could be terrorists The United States has warned leaders in Pakistan that the children and relations of the elite are potential terrorists who warrant closer monitoring.
Alex Spillius in Washington
Published: 7:19PM BST 21 May 2010

A "clear, if carefully worded warning" has been delivered by US officials after it was discovered that Faisal Shahzad, the man behind the recent failed attack on Times Square was the son of a retired Pakistani air marshal.

The father is one of Pakistan's most accomplished pilots and flight instructors and was stationed overseas in Britain and Saudi Arabia.

We've got elements of the Pakistani gentry - people who can get in and out of the United States with ease, if they're not already citizens here- who are getting roped into terrorism," a US official said.

It is understood the message was delivered last week when James Jones, the National Security Adviser, and Leon Panetta, the CIA director, met their counterparts in Pakistan.

The US has for years suspected that elements of the Pakistani military and intelligence service are connected to terror groups. It has publicly warned Pakistan of severe consequences if Pakistani terrorists attempt to strike America again.

The home-made car bomb which failed to detonate on May 1 at busiest time of day in New York's theatre district could have wreaked heavy damage.

Another confessed bomb plotter, David Headley, is the son of a retired senior Pakistani diplomat who may have served at the Pakistani embassy in Washington. His late mother was American but he changed his name to Daood Gilani to make crossing international borders easier. His half brother is spokesman for the prime minister of Pakistan.

Headley is facing a life sentence after admitting his involvement both in the 2008 terrorist attacks in downtown Mumbai and in a foiled plot to attack the Danish newspaper that stoked a global controversy by publishing cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed in 2005.

Teresita Schaffer, a retired American diplomat who worked in Pakistan, said the sons of the privileged had been involved in terror since the inception of al-Qaeda, whose leaders are from wealthy backgrounds.

"The thread running through this is that the leaders who build bombs and direct operations are not poor and down trodden. I don't think being child of privilege a military officer predisposes anyone to terrorism, but it certainly doesn't immunise.

US officials are investigating reports that a Pakistani army major was arrested this week in Pakistan on the suspicion of involvement in the Times Square plot.

Shahzad, who lost his job and then his house in the run up to the New York attack, is still talking to investigators and made his first court appearance this week. He has yet to enter a plea.
US warns Pakistani leaders their children could be terrorists

Friday, May 21, 2010

IAF Evacuates Injured Civilians

Friday, May 21, 2010
Today a bus carrying about 35 passengers fell off the road in the Reasi Area of J & K sector resulting in few of the passengers getting killed and seriously injured.

The IAF was quick to respond to the requisitioned air support and promptly launched 02 of its Chetak and 01 Mi-17 aircraft for the timely casualty evacuation operation flying out the injured and dead to Jammu. PJ/KS
IAF Evacuates Injured Civilians

Military Police Help Line Launched

Thursday, May 20, 2010 16:10 IST
The Indian Army has achieved a major milestone by activating the Military Police help line. The Facility was inaugurated by Army Chief General VK Singh on 19 May 10 during the biannual Army Commanders Conference being held at New Delhi. Common Military help line telephone number 155200 can now be accessed across the Nation to provide assistance to military personnel. The number is available at Mil Police Control Rooms and is instituted to provide immediate assistance and be instrumental in solving and mitigating crisis being faced by military personnel. In addition, it will provide an excellent facility for the civil police and the public to contact the Army Military Police to provide first hand information of any situation where military persons are involved or has potential to affect the military persons.

The telephone number has been allotted in coordination with department of telecommunication and can be accessed locally and from outside the locality by prefixing the STD code of that station. The facility has been activated presently at some of the Metro cities and State Capitals. The telecommunication Authorities have assured full support in extending the Services across the Nation at the earliest.
Military Police Help Line Launched: PIB

National Security: Naval war room leak case accused Shankaran arrested in London

Thu May 20 2010, 20:00 hrs
New Delhi:
In a major breakthrough in the Naval war room leak case, one of the main accused Ravi Shankaran, a close relative of the then Naval Chief Admiral Arun Prakash, was arrested in London.
"He has been arrested by the police in London and is at present out on bail. We have moved papers for his extradition," CBI Director Ashwani Kumar said. 46-year old Shankaran, against whom an Interpol Red Corner notice was issued in 2006, is one of the main accused who had allegedly passed on vital information to certain arms dealers for procurement for Indian Navy.

He was declared a proclaimed offender in 2006 with the government revoking his passport and approaching a UK court for his arrest. However, he had managed to give a slip to London Police and was believed to have been roaming in countries like France, Italy and Denmark.
Naval war room leak case accused Shankeran arrested in London

India seeks Navy spy custody May 20th, 2010
DC Correspondent
The naval war room leak, uncovered in 2005, involved alleged illegal trade-off of classified documents relating to defence acquisitions by persons including former Navy and IAF officers for private firms dealing with defence supplies.

Five persons including Shankaran were initially charge-sheeted by the CBI in the case. Shankaran is a relative of the former naval chief, Admiral (Retd.) Arun Prakash. The CBI hailed Shankaran’s arrest as a major breakthrough. The CBI’s investigations a few years ago had showed that defence leaks had taken place including details of a top secret naval project titled the Network Centric Operation (NCO).

“This crucial information can give an enemy country an advantage of knowing what are the command networks, network topography, pattern of data flow from command centres (both onshore and offshore) to battleships and topography of the computer network on the battlefield itself. With this information, an enemy power can use information warfare to block data flow (flow of orders) from command centres to warships/submarines at crucial moments or cause wrong orders to be communicated, by interfering with the network data flow by way of launching hacking attacks ," the CBI had stated in its chargesheet submitted in 2006 before a special court.

The CBI had estimated that the information leaked could be worth billions of dollars in a commercial transaction
India seeks Navy spy custody

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Ex-servicemen unhappy with new pension policy

Tribune News Service Patiala, May 19
Punjab ex-servicemen are upset over the alleged apathetic attitude of the union and state governments, pertaining to their long pending pension demands.

The State Ex-Servicemen Welfare Association argues that as compared to the benefits under One-Rank-One-Pension, the notification issued by the Central government regarding the fixation of pension offers only peanuts to the ex-servicemen.

President of the association Col Kuldip Singh Grewal (retd) said the pensions of naiks and havildars, with the same service and in the same grade, were less than sepoys. “Minimum pension of Z Group havildar has been fixed at Rs 4,254, whereas that of a sepoy is placed at Rs 4,410. In the wake of minimum three-promotion policy, almost all sepoys will retire as at least honorary havildars. This means that they will get lesser pension than those sepoys, who could not make the grade to higher promotions because of some reasons,” he pointed out.

Grewal said such a policy revealed that the authorities responsible to fix pensions were either ignorant of the rank structure of the forces or were intentionally bent upon creating confusion among the general public.
Ex-servicemen unhappy with new pension policy

Veteran Voice: Why struggle must continue for One Rank One Pension

134.Ajay Thapa, SC - Ex-Marcos IN - CPOAF(SD) Says:
May 4th, 2010 at 2:42 am
Dear All,
Money which comes to us is always welcome. You all know Defence Force Service has no respect in our country. Who will listen to you instantly. The struggle must continue of OROP. If not us the future pensioners will benefit, let them be OR’s, JCO’s or Officers. Please understand that hardly any one of our politician has actually served in military. Our Defence Minister are dhoti party who actually have no vision or understanding of military operations or requirements. They are dumb and follow what bureaucrat's tell them. How they will understand our way of life. Tell me one neta who comes out in the street and sits through out on the road to protest against government for us. In J&K, Assam, Manipur- each day our uniform men are dying, okay few claps, cheers and award for few and that is it. This is our country where actors and cricket players are better respected than a military jawan or officer. This because we all in uniform gave our youth, honesty, duty to the nation. Had we not joined, I am sure these Neta, Actors, Cricketers, businessmen would not be enjoying the terms of life they are enjoying today. This has been a routine in Indian society. NO UNITY-DIVIDE AND RULE. This is being followed since ages in India.

Think about it- India is Bharat or Hindustan? Where did this India came from? Name has changed on it’s own. Had we’ve been united, Mogul's would not have entered India neither English. We were the leader of this world, had everything till 1720. We were world leader and today we are in shambles, and more so our corrupt netas, lawmakers are further degrading us. There convoy drives through the bumpy road, disfigured path but they never take any heed. I hope they have eyes and brain to see but they see the money which will follow on order of road building project, which happens in paperwork, hardly in reality. They are sending staggering amount to Swiss Banks and feeding the Swiss with interest of our common Bhariya money, Swiss per capita income is about USD 55000. Our neta so crippled that they talk big but can;t get this public money back to India. No one will be poor if this money comes back. Who will do that? I think Baba Ramdev has a point- Swabhimaan Bhaarat. 3 months fast track court and hang the corrupt person till death. So folks…it is time to think about yourself while support the OROP movement, but please do no rely on it and find, create or do something to benefit your life and your family.

I must tell you that I retired after 15 years of meritorious service in the Nausena. In service I completed BA, 2 years before retirement. I started hunting for job opportunities, result-the very next day I retired, I was working in Dubai as diver. I hunted for better options and I became Security Officer in cruise lines. Here I completed M.Sc and at age 49years, I am pursuing Ph.d. and presently working in Carnival Cruise Lines as a Senior Officer drawing a salary of over 5 lacs per month. The message I want to send to all my colleagues and Jawans that education matters and effort with result matters. Support the OROP movement BUT do not rely and wait for it. Help yourself, look for opportunity or develop your own work space. Therefore, it does not matter one was officer in Defence, yes that is good, but PBOR’s can be officer after retirement and shape the future. The time has to be right of making decision. So all of you, as your age has surpassed the hiring age. I can help your children to get into Cruise Lines. They should be graduate, Good English (speaking, reading, writing and understanding)-I can guide them to join as Security Officers. As Cruise lines is a hospitality industry, direct management level is hard to crack. The easiest way is to get in as Security Officer/Guard and than rise from there once they are in. Salary of Security Officer/Guard is between USD 1300 to USD 1000. Food & Accommodation free. 6 months renewable, performance based contract, two way air ticket free. See the world. I want to say that let us create job or guide our colleague jawans sons and daughters to the job which can change their future. What is respect of military men, I learnt that in USA. With my Ex- Servicemen Identity Card, I am greatly respected here in USA when ever my identity is asked, I produce Passport and Ex-Servicemen ID- its a great feeling when American authorities pay respect for the military service done. I wish in India it would happen. So cheers to all, be positive, optimistic as life goes on, bring change to your life by thinking beyond OROP, once approved you will get it. Do not loose the life which is in your hand, today exchange your life for a better tomorrow. With Total Respect to all my Jawan brothers.. Thapa Ajay
Read all the comments some amusing some condemnable: Government accepts recommendation of one-rank-one pension for ex-servicemen

Sri Lanka’s Ethnic Conflict: How Eelam War IV Was Won

Manekshaw Paper No. 22
Sri Lanka’s Ethnic Conflict: How Eelam War IV Was Won: Maj Gen Ashok Mehta, AVSM (Retd)
How did Sri Lanka’s current generation of political and military leaders manage to pull off a brilliant but brutal military victory, defying all predictions and assessments that comprehensive battlefield success against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) was not feasible? The synergy of political will, military doggedness, unrestrained resources, diplomatic agility and the backing of the majority Sinhalese community produced the winning formula that dared to spurn the calls for restraint and ceasefire from the Western world and humanitarian agencies. The best-kept secret is India’s decisive role in helping Colombo win the war.
The paper traces the background to the failed negotiations with the LTTE and the wars fought by earlier regimes to maintain a line of control that ran along Mannar-Vavuniya-Mullaithivu, yielding control from the North of this line to the Tigers, while ferociously guarding Trincomalee harbour in the east. The eastern and northern offensives culminated in the fateful ‘last battle’ fought on a coastal strip off Mullaithivu. It will be difficult for less resolute countries to replicate the elimination of a deadly guerilla force like the LTTE. Yet, for now, the ethnic conflict is far from over.
The full Mankeshaw Paper is in PDF format click here to locate the article in CLAWS webpage

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Pakistanis are becoming the world's pariahs?

Opinion: On Being Pakistani
ISLAMABAD (May 16) -- Pakistanis are becoming the world's pariahs. Since being implicated in a steady stream of violent attacks -- from the London Tube bombings in 2005 to this month's failed attempt to bomb Times Square -- it seems almost inevitable now that when the next act of terrorism happens, a Pakistani will be involved.

As a Canadian of Pakistani descent, I've watched this pattern emerge with a rising sense of trepidation. Thirty-five years ago, when my parents decided to move to Canada, things were much different. Pakistanis were different. They were much in demand -- an intelligent, hard-working people who integrated and contributed positively to society, wherever they went.

What a terrible journey we've made since then.

Today, Pakistanis are objects of fear and suspicion. Wherever we go we must contend with the "terrorist" label and endure the scrutiny that accompanies it. Like many of my compatriots, I've been "interviewed" by the Joint Terrorism Task Force at the U.S. border, questioned at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi airport and scrutinized with extra efficiency by a German border control officer. Every time it happens, a piece of advice a Sufi in Saudi Arabia once gave me cycles through my mind: "When an obstacle is placed in front of you," he said, "be like water -- flow around it."

Pakistanis are being asked to flow a lot these days, and it will not get better any time soon. Many people in the world must be asking why it is that so many acts of terrorism in the West seem to lead back to Pakistan. Is there something in the Pakistani psyche that makes them susceptible to violence?

What those people might be surprised to hear is that Pakistanis are asking the same questions.

At the forefront is something quite basic: How did this happen? How, in 30 years -- a mere generation -- have Pakistanis gone from being desirable to becoming undesirables?

The standard narrative goes something like this: During the 1980s, the U.S. promoted violent jihad in Pakistan to create a proxy army to fight against the godless Soviets in Afghanistan. The Americans funded the growth of jihad ideology, encouraged the construction of madrasas -- religious seminaries that have now become militant birthing grounds -- and are now fighting the jihadists they helped to create, including Osama bin Laden.

But there is another side to the story. After Soviet troops withdrew from Afghanistan, Pakistan's military establishment decided to continue using the jihadists as proxies, both in Afghanistan and in Kashmir. That cold-hearted act of realpolitik was inspired by a neo-Cold War mentality in which India was -- and still is -- viewed as an existential threat to Pakistan.

Most Pakistanis feel that America has brought war on them, a war no one here wanted and which is ultimately killing Pakistanis. But for me, and for a silent minority of Pakistanis as well, there is an alarming lack of recognition of the role played by Pakistan's own armed forces and intelligence agencies in sending Pakistan down the road to jihad.

There are two reasons for this. First, for decades, Pakistan's generals have diligently maintained the illusion that the army is the only reason Pakistan has not collapsed. Pakistanis are spoon-fed this false perception from childhood, indoctrinated into believing that the army is the Great Savior, the Protector, the Guardian.

Second, opposing the army can have dire consequences. The execution of former Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in 1979 is one salient example. The mounting evidence of an army role in the December 2008 assassination of his daughter, Benazir Bhutto, is another.

Just a few days ago my uncle expressed his concern in connection with the work I was doing tracing Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad's militant connections back to groups linked to Pakistan's dreaded spy service, the ISI. "You don't understand these people," he warned me. "They can make you disappear and you will never be found again. No one can stand up to them."

But somebody must stand up to them. Pakistan's image in the world, not to mention its future, depends on it. Is it an accident that Faisal Shahzad was the son of a senior Pakistani military officer? I don't think so. Military culture in this country is virulently anti-American. Couple it with the rampant spread of jihad ideology -- also the product of the army's failed policies -- and you end up with a deadly mix.

The failed attack on Times Square is only the tip of the iceberg. The fear among many Pakistanis is that some similar attempt is likely to succeed. With each attack, fear and suspicion of any Pakistani is bound to rise. And the irony is that as Pakistan spirals into chaos, young people here are increasingly looking to get out.

Two of my cousins are waiting for their immigration papers to be approved in Canada. They are educated, moderate Pakistani Muslims, much like Shahzad appeared to be until recently. They worry now that the environment of fear will hamper their efforts for a better life abroad. My brother, a professor of biochemistry at Trinity College in Dublin, is planning a sabbatical to Harvard, but worries about the treatment he'll receive there.

Bearded Pakistanis have been under the microscope for years. Now, clean-shaven, Ray-Ban-wearing Pakistanis may be in for the same treatment. My advice to them is to listen to the Sufis. Self-respect lies within the self; no one can take it away from you. Be like water.
Adnan S. Khan covers Pakistan for AOL News.
Original Source: Opinion: On Being Pakistani by Adnan R. Khan

Am I a Maoist? An incisive reality byte

Dear Readers,
1. I am ATTACHING Am I a Maoist?: Click here a very short, incisive article about a new kind of “-ism”, written by an adivasi published in a current affairs journal. Do please read it and comment if you wish. Y ou will be enlightened.
2. And do please pass it around also. You will know why there is Maoism in India and who is responsible for it.
Regards and best wishes,
Brigadier PT Gangadharan, Guards

National Security: Links to interesting media articles

From sea to shining sea Arun Prakash
Tue May 18 2010,
Jawaharlal Nehru’s gallant endeavour to establish a pan-Asian identity through the Asian Relations Conference in March 1947 proved futile for a number of reasons, of which prime was the firm resolve of Mao Tse Tung to arrogate for China the mantle of Asian leadership. In the six decades since then, India has persevered with other initiatives to create South Asian and Indian Ocean Region (IOR) identities. Unfortunately these initiatives have languished. The Indian Navy (IN) has always fancied itself as a trail blazer in the limited context of maritime diplomacy.
Read more: From sea to shining sea by Arun Prakash former Chief of the Naval Staff, is currently Chairman of the National Maritime Foundation

The larger issue behind Ramesh's outburst in China
May 17, 2010
The case of Jairam Ramesh is particularly curious. He challenged his government's policy on a foreign soil, in essence suggesting that its is the Chinese government that is right when it underscores time and again that India, not China, is responsible for the recent downward spiral in Sino-Indian ties. What a remarkable achievement for a government minister that he ends up giving ammunition to an adversary that has left no stone unturned in challenging India's rise at every possible forum.
Read the full article: The larger issue behind Ramesh's outburst in China by Harsh V Pant

India’s military diplomacy in the Gulf: The importance of Oman by C Raja Mohan
Mon May 17 2010, 15:29 hrs, New Delhi
As Defence Minister A K Antony arrives in Muscat on Monday to review and reinforce the bilateral security partnership, he will hopefully measure up to the challenge of intensifying India’s military engagement in the Gulf. At a time when most major powers - including the older European ones and the new one from China - are deepening their military cooperation with the Gulf, India’s security partnerships in the region remain way below potential.
Read more: India’s military diplomacy in the Gulf: The importance of Oman by C Raja Mohan

Treating China Differently
Since India and China will continue to be potential adversaries so long as the border dispute is not settled, the argument that we should treat the Chinese companies in the same way we treat the Western companies does not hold good.
Read the full article: Treating China Differently by B Raman

1950 Treaty: A Visionary Approach
Guest Column by Hari Bansh Jha- 17 May 2010
In Nepal, there are certain groups of people who hold 1950 Treaty of Peace and Friendship signed between Nepal and India on 31st July 1950 as a great asset to Nepal; while others take it as liability. However, the dilemma is that those who take it as an asset have not been able to speak so strongly as to how much the nation benefits from the Treaty. Those who oppose it have also miserably failed to bring out its alternative. And the common mass of the Nepalese population who continue to benefit from the Treaty provisions through its social, cultural, political and economic arrangements are simply the silent spectators.
1950 Treaty: A Visionary Approach by Guest Column by Hari Bansh Jha

Argumentative Chinese step forward
By Sreeram Chaulia
May 18, 2010
BEIJING - This year marks the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the People's Republic of China and India, a momentous occasion that invites reflection on where the two Asian giants are heading in the much-touted "Asian century".
Awareness that this bilateral relationship is critical to the current world order is rising in both countries as they try to position themselves as drivers and pivots of global economic and security structures.
Read full article: Argumentative Chinese step forward By Sreeram Chaulia

Kashmir and the tale of two Faisals
Col (Dr) Anil Athale | 2010-05-18 15:11:30
Breaking news specialists have brought the Indo-Pak peace process back again. This peace process has been frozen and thawed so many times, that an automatic defrost model is called for. The American decision to ‘reward’ Pakistan with weapons to ‘defend’ itself against India is also a repeat of history. Pakistan thereby hopes to counter the threat of an Indian retaliation to a terrorist attack. In Afghanistan the Americans seem to have come to a conclusion that if you can’t beat them, then join them. Even given the dismal US record in South Asia, this seems the acme of short term thinking. The notion that by directing the jihadi’s towards India, the US will be safe had big hole blown into it with the failed car bombing in Times Square.
Read more: Kashmir and the tale of two Faisals by Col (Dr) Anil Athale

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Appeal to locate needy War Widows

I request your help in locating needy War Widows in distress and needy War Wounded Veterans. We are bringing out a Brochure on the Foundation shortly and I will send copies of the same to you all. In the meantime, you may use the write up which is placed below and you are requested to give a wide publicity by sending it to your veteran friends so that we could locate and help some martyr's Family or war wounded veterans in distress.

Flags of Honour Foundation
(A Charitable Trust registered with Sub-Registrar Bangalore on 02 Jul 2009 at Book IV Regn. No 36/2009-10). Flags of Foundation was launched on the 10th Anniversary of ‘Kargil Diwas’ in July 2009 at Bangalore. The objective of this Foundation is to offer financial and material support to families of Martyrs/War Widows/War Wounded Veterans of the Defence and Para Military Forces who gave their lives for the nation. The Foundation’s main focus is to ensure that the families of Martyrs never endure alone and provide financial and material support in terms of cash grant when in they are distress.

Family members of Martyrs or War Wounded veterans desirous of seeking assistance from the Foundation can write to the following address or contact the office bearers through the website Flags of Honour.
Address: Flags of Honours Foundation, NA Chambers, No. 3J, 7th C Main, 3rd Cross, III Block, Koramangala, Bangalore-560034.

Brig (Retd) B Chandra Shelkar

Gandhian Engineering is not just for the poor

CJ: Sheila Panickar Wed, Oct 14, 2009 10:06:15 IST

WHAT BRANCH of engineering would be the most crucial for the 21st century? Electrical Engineering? Aeronautical Engineering? Computer Engineering? Electronics Engineering? No. None of these. It will be ‘Gandhian engineering’. Dr RA Mashelkar, Chairman, National Innovation Foundation and President of Global Research Alliance in his lecture highlighted the emergence of Innovation and focus on Gandhian Engineering to a large gathering of NIT-W Alumni and students at the Golden Jubilee and Foundation Day of NIT-W Alumni meet at the campus.

Dr Mashelkar started the address at 11:45 am exactly at the same time and day 50 years ago Pundit Jawaharlal Nehru laid the foundation stone for the Institute. Dr. Mashelkar, Chairman of National Innovation said it gave him immense pleasure to be part of the NIT-W Golden Jubilee Celebration as it was a Mashelkar Committee in 1998/99 that had reviewed RECs and recommended that they be converted to National Institute of Technology (NIT).
Read the article: Gandhian Engineering's crucial role in 21st century
Read 37 pages of the innovative concept: Gandhian Engineering is not just for the poor

Cyber Warfare is the New Gen Security Threat: Antony

The Defence Minister Shri AK Antony today asked the top brass of the Armed Forces to work in unison and make cyber systems 'as secure and as non-porous as possible'. Addressing the Army Commanders here, Shri Antony said cyber-warfare is becoming a serious threat to security.

"The paradigms of security in the age of Information Technology are seldom constant. The evolving security matrix is complex and calls for co-operation and coordination of the highest level. Today, no single service can work in isolation. Cyber warfare and threats to cyber security are fast becoming the next generation of threats. We need to make our cyber systems as secure and as non-porous as possible", he said.

Shri Antony made a strong plea for synergy among the three Forces and said the future security matrix calls for a high-degree of cooperation and inter-dependence among the Services. He said the primary area of focus should be to develop as a force capable of operating in joint network – centric environment. Besides these the other emerging areas that warrant synergised development are space, NBC, Cyber Warfare capabilities, Air Defence, Rotary Wing Assistance, precision munitions, standoff targeting and missiles, communication systems, logistics and joint training.

"Though significant progress has been made towards accomplishing jointness in various operational training and administrative facets among the three Services, there are a number of areas congruence that need to be strengthened further", he said.

Referring to the Modernisation Plans of the Armed Forces, the Defence Minister said it is in our long term national interest that we become self reliant in the field of critical defence equipment. He said modernisation plans of the Armed Forces encompass force modernisation and development of critical combat capabilities, not only against potential adversaries, but across the spectrum of conflict. Sitanshu Kar / RAJ
PIB: Cyber Warfare is the New Gen Security Threat: Antony

Army Commanders’ Conference
The Army Commanders’ Conference commenced at Integrated Headquarters of Ministry of Defence (Army) on 17 May 10. The five days conference, scheduled from 17 May 10 to 21 May 10 is being chaired by Army Chief General VK Singh. The Defence Minister Shri AK Antony in his inaugural address emphasised on the necessity for force modernisation to meet emerging threats. He stressed on the requirement of Tri-Services synergy across the spectrum of conflict to meet our National Security needs. The Defence Minister brought out that Cyber Security is the next generation of threat. He stressed the need to make our cyber space fully secure. He said that the Govt was taking all necessary steps to ensure that the Indian Army is kept in a high state of operational preparedness as also ensuring high morale of troops through training and welfare measures.

The Army Chief General VK Singh during his address reviewed the Regional security situation, in which he spoke of the Asymmetric means adopted by non state actors and terrorists to achieve their objectives. He also mentioned the multi spectral threats, which directly affect military doctrines and restructuring.

General Singh stressed on the need to transform the Indian Army so as to customise its operational effectiveness. Talking about training, the Army Chief emphasised on realistic, imaginative and practical training. Referring to Low Intensity Conflict he stressed on “zero tolerance” to Human Rights violations.

Army Chief also emphasised on morals, ethics and value systems in the Army. He brought out that professional commitment, loyalty, sacrifice and integrity were the need of the hour and that there would be no compromise with respect to the image of the Army. Veerendra/Rajendra
Army Commander's Conference commenced: PIB

Monday, May 17, 2010

Degeneration of Indian doctors

India today is increasingly producing a generation of doctors who are taking bribes instead of the Hippocratic oath.
Do we need a reality check of Doctors employed by ECHS?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

The silent Bangladeshi invasion of Assam

2010-05-14 17:52:29
Subir Ghosh​
A week ago, an unsettling incident occurred in Assam that went largely unnoticed in the Indian media.
Over a thousand suspected illegal migrants crossed the Dhansiri river and, with impunity, took over parts of Orang National Park in Darrang district in the early hours of May 6, 2010
India has 20 million illegal migrants
Enumeration of electors in Assam by the Election Commission showed more than 30 per cent increase in 17 Assembly constituencies and more than 20 per cent increase in 40 constituencies between 1994 and 1997.

Read more: The silent Bangladeshi invasion of Assam
Subir Ghosh is a senior Delhi -based journalist. He blogs at


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