Saturday, May 26, 2012

Investigation of BEML Chief stalled? Will he escape?

More trouble for BEML chief Natarajan?

Executive Profile
VRS Natarajan
Chairman of the Board and Managing Director, BEML Limited
Age Total Calculated Compensation This person is connected to 15 board members in 1 different organizations across 1 different industries.
Shri VRS Natarajan serves as the Managing Director and Chairman and of Bharat Earth Movers Ltd. Corporate Headquarters
Bangalore, Karnataka 560027 India
Phone: 91 80 2296 3240
Fax: 91 80 2296 3278
Board Members Memberships
Chairman of the Board and Managing Director
BEML Limited
There is no Education data available. Other Affiliations
There is no Company Affiliations data available. Salary 1,464,638
Total Annual Compensation 1,464,638
Stock Options
All Other Compensation 2,452,039
Total Compensation
Total Annual Cash Compensation 3,916,677
Total Short Term Compensation 1,464,638
Other Long Term Compensation 2,452,039
Total Calculated Compensation
BEML Chief Executive Profile

Government deserves a spineless Chief for corrupt weapon deals

India | Posted on May 24, 2012 at 11:39am IST No farewell speeches for Army Chief Gen VK Singh at Antony's dinner New Delhi: Defence Minister AK Antony's dinner for outgoing Army Chief Gen VK Singh on Wednesday night was marked by bonhomie but there were no farewell speeches.
No speeches were made at the farewell dinner for Gen Singh and his wife Bharati Singh hosted by Antony and his wife Elizabeth, sources said on Thursday, adding it was unusual as generally officials present say a few lines about the outgoing Service chiefs at farewell functions. The Army chief, who retires on May 31, has been involved in a tussle with the Defence Ministry over several issues including the row over his date of birth.
Defence Ministry spokesperson Sitanshu Kar said there was "bonhomie" at the dinner where the Defence Minister and his wife played perfect hosts at the Army Battle Honours Mess. Antony gifted a silver bowl to the outgoing chief as a memento.
National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon, Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma, Director General Acquisition Vivek Rae, IDS Chief Vice Admiral Shekhar Sinha and Navy Chief Admiral Nirmal Verma were present on the occasion.
Gen Singh's last major function would be the National Defence Academy passing out parade on May 30 in Khadakvasla near Pune.
He will hand over the reins of the Army to Lt Gen Bikram Singh on May 31 afternoon.
No farewell speeches for Army Chief Gen VK Singh at Antony's dinner
Comment: Price for Professionalism and Patriotism. The Military needs leaders who are loyal to the troops and serve the Nation and free from corrupt practices.

DRDO is Bedrock of Corruption: Needs thorough overhaul

The Missile that Cannot Fire – Long delays, cost escalation damage DRDO’s reputation Posted on May 4, 2012 by admin
Amarnath K, Menon and Gaurav C. Sawant – April 13, 2012 – India Today
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) was set up in 1958 with a vision to “provide our defence services a decisive edge by equipping them with internationally competitive systems and solutions”. The DRDO has clearly failed in its mission.
There is no bigger indictment of India‘s premier organisation for research and development in military hardware than the fact that 54 years after its establishment, India still imports 70 per cent of its equipment requirements. In 1997, India best known defence bureaucrat and the then scientific adviser to defence minister, APJ Abdul Kalam, had said that India should bring the share of imports in defence equipment purchases down to 30 per cent by 2005. No progress has been made. The percentage is still 70-30 in favour of imports.
DRDO passes its expertise to NTRO – I
All the stalwarts of DRDO who were master of manipulating government funds, misinterpretation of government rules having expertise in inculcating a negative attitude towards self reliance and always planning commission and omission through bulk purchases were shifted to NTRO an agency established by the government after KARGIL debacle. The modus operandi of DRDO & NTRO experts/bosses are twin in appearance, if CBI enquires in depth the enquiry will reveal that the entire procurement/ recruitment system are identical.
Deccan Herald
Under veil of secrecy, elint outfit gobbles funds Chandan Nandy, Bangalore, Mar 20, 2012, DHNS:
Less spying and more misuse of resources in elite security set-up
Comment: DRDO under MOD is festering with corruption. The bureaucrats have evolved with the best brains to spin Tax payers money and make easy money through money laundering cycle perfected by Criminal Politicians- Difficult to unearth. DRDO chief is a stooge positioned by MOD
Click here for more on DRDO

Friday, May 25, 2012

Political paralysis has stymied domestic overhauls

Big danger from a declining rupee for India
Deccan Herald Friday 25 May 2012
Swati Bhat, The New York Times

The prevailing situation is indeed grim as the country is grappling with internal and external economic threats
India may face its worst financial crisis in decades if it fails to stem a slide in the rupee, leaving the central bank with a difficult choice over how to make the best use of its limited reserves to maintain the confidence of foreign investors.
Unlike most of its Asian peers, India routinely runs large current account and fiscal deficits. That means it must attract sufficient foreign money, namely dollars, to close the gap, and a weaker home currency makes that costlier. What makes the current situation so worrisome is that India is grappling with big internal and external economic threats simultaneously: Growth is slowing. Inflation remains high. Political paralysis has stymied domestic overhauls.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the last line of defense against a currency meltdown, has cautiously begun to support the rupee, but its firepower may be more limited than its $300 billion in reserves would suggest. Beyond India’s borders, Europe is the biggest worry. As its banks deleverage, investment money has flooded out of Indian markets. If European debt troubles worsen, India could be hit with a balance of payments crisis as severe as the one that forced a sharp devaluation in 1991.
The rupee, which has dropped 16 per cent in the past four months, got a reprieve last week after six of the world’s big central banks banded together to try to ease dollar funding strains, helping it break a four-week losing trend. But analysts widely expect the rupee to resume its slide.
“The Indian currency will be the first casualty of a deterioration in the euro zone crisis,” said Mumbai-based the Bank of Baroda chief economist Rupa Rege Nitsure. If the European crisis deepens, the Indian trade deficit would widen even more rapidly, and India would have even more trouble attracting foreign capital.
“Risk appetite will obviously collapse, and gradually the currency crisis is likely to take the shape of a balance of payments crisis,” Nitsure said. India’s current account deficit swelled to $14.1 billion in its fiscal first quarter, nearly triple the tally of the previous quarter. The full-year gap is expected to be around $54 billion.
Its fiscal deficit hit $58.7 billion in the April-to-October period. In February, the government projected a deficit equal to 4.6 per cent of gross domestic product for the fiscal year ending in March 2012, although the finance minister said Friday that it would be difficult to hit that target. India relies heavily on portfolio inflows, which are foreign purchases of shares and bonds, as a means of covering its current account gap. Those flows are fickle.
Foreign portfolio investors have sold a net $50 million worth of equities so far in 2011, in sharp contrast to the $29 billion they invested in 2010, data from the Securities and Exchange Board of India’s (Sebi) website shows. In November alone, foreign funds pulled $661 million out of Indian stocks.
“The Indian economy is one of the most vulnerable to liquidity shocks in the region, not helped the least by deficits in its key balances,” said Singapore-based Forecast PTE economist Radhika Rao. The drop in portfolio inflows and the hefty current account and fiscal deficits have been the main factors behind the rupee’s decline.
The RBI appears to have intervened to try to slow the decline. Between October 28 and November 25, reserves dropped by $16 billion to $304 billion, yet the rupee still fell by 7 per cent during that period. Trading in rupee offshore forward contracts shows traders are betting on the rupee’s declining a further 1.7 per cent over the next three months and 4.5 per cent over a year. Many economists argue that the RBI has been too timid and deserves part of the blame for the rupee’s weakness.
“The biggest mistake RBI has made is that it has almost given an open invitation to speculators to short the rupee,” said Singapore-based CLSA economist Rajeev Malik. “It is really bizarre for any central bank to openly keep on saying that it will not intervene when there is already pressure on the currency to weaken and globally things are so uncertain.”
Normally, higher interest rates bolster currencies, so the rupee’s weakness is all the more significant. If the RBI decides to step in more aggressively, its maneuvering room is more limited than its reserves tally would suggest. After covering the current account deficit, short-term debt and foreign investment flows, there would be less than $20 billion left over.
Mumbai-based IndusInd Bank head (Market and Economic Research) J Moses Harding said that the Reserve Bank’s immediate concern would be stopping the spread of currency woes into the money market. The Indian banking system already borrows more than $19 billion from the central bank to meet reserve requirements, so if the RBI moved to prop up the rupee, it would drain more liquidity out of an already tight market.
Big danger from a declining rupee for India

10-year-old's RTI posers stump PMO

Aishwarya Parashar. Photo: Special Arrangement
The Hindu Gaurav Vivek Bhatnagar NEW DELHI, May 25, 2012
When some simple questions came to the mind of Aishwarya Parashar, a Class-VI student of the City Montessori School, Lucknow, she did not let them languish unasked. She went seeking out answers through the Right to Information (RTI) Act. Aishwarya's inquisitiveness and willingness to pursue the source of information has yielded, till date, the establishment of a public library on the site of a garbage dump and the nation being better enlightened about the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi.
All of just 10 years, Aishwarya is a confident little girl, who herself answers a mobile phone and urges those wanting some written information from her to send her an SMS giving their e-mail ID and even forwards e-mail and communicates about her work on her own.
“I have so far filed three RTIs with the Prime Minister's Office,'' she says, adding that “the first one was [a query] about who gave the order for printing Mahatma Gandhi's image on currency notes. I was told in a reply that it was in 1993 following a meeting of the Reserve Bank of India.”
But it was her subsequent RTI asking the PMO to tell her who conferred the title of Father of the Nation on Mahatma Gandhi, which confounded the government. From the PMO, the query went to the Ministry of Home Affairs and to the National Archives of India, before Aishwarya was told that “there are no specific documents on the information sought” by her.
“That was really surprising because I never thought it was such a difficult question since even our history books taught us that Mahatma Gandhi was the Father of the Nation.”
The first reference to Mahatma Gandhi as Father of the Nation goes back nearly 70 years when Subhas Chandra Bose referred to Gandhi thus in a radio address from Singapore in 1944.
Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru too had, in his address to the nation upon Mahatma Gandhi's death, referred to him as Father of the Nation: “Friends and comrades, the light has gone out of our lives, and there is darkness everywhere, and I do not quite know what to tell you or how to say it. Our beloved leader, Bapu as we called him, the Father of the Nation, is no more.”
After getting an unsatisfactory answer to her query on this issue in March this year, Aishwarya on April 24 asked the PMO who had declared Mahatma Gandhi's birth anniversary on October 2 as also Republic Day and Independent Day national holidays. To her surprise, she got a reply dated May 17 that such orders were never issued.
Favourite query
The question most dear to Aishwarya's heart was posed by her in 2009. “That was the time when Lucknow was in the grip of swine flu. There was a big garbage dump near my school, but I only got to see it one day when my mother came to pick me up as my cycle-rickshaw had not come. For the parents there was a separate entrance, and on the way back home I spotted this dump.” With the help of her mother, Urvashi Sharma, who is a social worker and RTI activist, Aishwarya penned an application in her own handwriting. “I had marked that query on the garbage dump to the Chief Minister and thereafter the Uttar Pradesh government got the dump removed, and our school constructed a public library on the site.”
Her father, Sanjay Sharma, is a lecturer.
Aishwarya wants to become a doctor. Asked why, she quips: “Whenever I go to a hospital, I see that the poor patients have to first shell out money in order to get treated. I will, on becoming a doctor, go to the slums at least once every week and provide free treatment to such poor people.”
10-year-old's RTI posers stump PMO, Government

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Lt General Dalbir Singh Suhag cons SFF

New Delhi: The Army Chief, already in a full-blown battle with the government, appears to have further aggravated the situation by asking the CBI to investigate corruption charges against a serving General, one who is second in line to replace him when he retires at the end of May.
General VK Singh wrote to the CBI, asking for an inquiry into allegations by a Member of Parliament from Bengal against Lt General Dalbir Singh Suhag. The MP, Ambika Banerjee of the Trinamool Congress, had written nearly 10 months ago to General Singh, alleging corruption in the purchase of defence equipment on Lt General Suhag's watch when he (then a Major General) was in charge of the Special Frontier Force in Chakrata near Nanital. The Lt General is currently the head of the 3 Corps in Dimapur, Nagaland.
Army Chief asks for CBI inquiry against serving General
Factional feud rages again, Gen VK Singh issues show-cause notice to Lt Gen Suhag
SFF is under MHA
The Special Frontier Force (SFF) is a paramilitary unit of India. It was conceived in the post Sino-Indian war period as a guerrilla force composed mainly of Tibetan refugees whose main goal was to conduct covert operations behind Chinese lines in case of another war between the People's Republic of China and India. Based in Chakrata, Uttarakhand, SFF is also known as the Establishment 22. The force was put under the direct supervision of the Intelligence Bureau, and later, the Research and Analysis Wing, India's external intelligence agency. SFF right now of course it is under the MHA like NSG, SSB, CISF etc.
Under PC's spell and pandora box... corruption and money laundering is the game for purchase of equipment for the PMF's. His family member does all the arms shopping in East European Countries clandestinely of course... his travel manifests will tell the tale...

Montek Singh Fudges India's Growth

Dr. Ahluwalia does not contradict a single fact in the article:
(i) Rs.2.02 lakh daily average expenditure for trips between May and October 2011 (well after his “busy” G-20 period ending in 2010). No “gross extravagance”?
(ii) 274 days abroad, or one in every nine. Factor in travel days and it could be one in seven away from office.
(iii) 42 trips, half of them visits to the U.S. (several trips not connected with his duties as Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission).
The link between the poverty line figures he supports (and defends in the Supreme Court) and his own expenditures is extremely relevant and pertinent. It is hypocrisy to impose one approach on an impoverished people while practising another — entirely different — for himself, with their money — public money. That too in a period where his government calls for more austerity. Dealing with abject poverty was central to the founding principles of the Planning Commission. But that, unlike Dr. Ahluwalia, is hobbled by “resource constraints.”
The travel period he cites as vital (2008-10) was one in which Dr. Manmohan Singh had ordered that government “severely curtail expenditure on air travel, particularly foreign travel,” except where deemed “absolutely necessary” (The Hindu, June 6, 2008).
Several ministers' foreign trips were cancelled and cuts announced in travel expenses. Two ministers lost their five-star hotel suites. The External Affairs Minister gave up his plane for overseas trips, and others flew economy class (The Hindu, September 13, 2009). Dr. Ahluwalia is silent on what class he actually travelled by, then or thereafter, or his expenses. How much travel does he undertake within India — surely a priority for a Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission? Put that up on the website?
Costs of $4,000 (daily average) are huge. And we don't know what the embassies and consulates spent on him locally. But spending curbs worry Dr. Ahluwalia, who asks “whether and to what extent this would affect our ability to enter into negotiations immediately on arrival…” Hope he spares a thought for how millions of Indian travellers, like migrant labourers, journey, and have to be productive on arrival. He plans for them, after all. G-20 meetings in 2008-10 were held in different countries, but his visits mostly took him to the U.S. His U.S. visits were prolific earlier, too, as the RTI data show.
Given the importance he claims for his sherpa work in G-20 and other forums, which he admits is unconnected to the Planning Commission, why remain in the Commission and paralyse its functioning by being absent so often? The first day of the 11th Plan was April 1, 2007. But the Plan document was ready only on June 25, 2008 — an entire year wasted that brought cascading disaster for many vital projects. The “mid-term” appraisal came in the fourth year of that Five-Year Plan! Now, we're into the first year of the 12th Plan and it is not even remotely ready. It is good to know the Planning Commission's website will carry his travel details. But the RTI data was also about his expenses. Will he put those up, too? Better still, if other PC members' expenses go up as well, to allow us comparisons.
It is a measure of how disconnected Dr. Ahluwalia is that he does not sense how the public views his expenditures. Nor, worse, the further damage his clarification will do to their perceptions.
Planning Commission on Luxurious Travel Agenda
Montek in eye of storm over Plan panel’s poverty estimates
Falling rupee adds fuel to India’s crisis
Fuel shock ignites rage
Comment: Snow Ball effect of Black Money, Money Laundering, Bureaucratic Curruption, Luxurious Life Style of Ministers, MPs and President....

Balance and Restraint: Corruption and Indiscipline cannot be equated

NEED OF THE HOUR Balance and Restraint by the Media By Lt Gen Vijay Oberoi
A recent incident of indiscipline in a unit of the army was dutifully reported by the media, but a few newspapers and TV news channels that indulge in yellow journalism, continue to sensationalise it. This is despite the army having unequivocally stated that the incident is being investigated thoroughly. Implicit in various media releases by the army is that there is no move whatsoever to push the incident under the carpet and that exemplary disciplinary action would be taken against all those found guilty. This being so, speculative innuendos and sensational stances must stop.
 My intention is not to say that the news of the incident should not have been reported, or that the media should only report favourable news about the army. However, one starts losing faith in our supposedly independent media when sensationalism takes over and phrases like ˜unique case" or ˜army getting indisciplined" are bandied about.
This is not the first time such an incident has occurred. Â Without going too far back, there was a case in 1978 and another in 1979, both in Ladakh. In 1986 and 1987, two such incidents occurred in the eastern sector. During Operation Pawan in Sri Lanka, there were two incidents, one each in 1987 and 1989. Mutinous actions of a number of units following Operation Blue Star in 1984 are well known. There have been similar incidents in the navy and air force too. All these were handled by the hierarchy of the armed forces with balance, maturity and panache and no editor-in-chief of those days interfered or offered advice, as is being done by a few upstarts today! Neither was there any dilution in the professional capabilities of our forces!
  • All artillery units fire their artillery guns a number of times every year, but the annual practice firing camp has a special sanctity. During this camp, all artillery guns of the unit fire at the field firing ranges and all personnel of the unit are fully involved. When all the guns of the unit fire simultaneously, the noise, dust, smoke and explosions they produce can only be described as spectacular.
  • During these camps, there is a surge in adrenalin levels of all ranks, as well as tension, as everyone wants to do well. On the day the entire regiment fires, many guests are invited to witness this spectacular event. Once the firing is wound up, there is visible decrease in tension and everyone gets in to a celebratory frame of mind, having successfully achieved what they had set out to do.
  • It is unfortunate that after the culmination of this specific event, the unfortunate incident of indiscipline occurred. It was an isolated incident, where tempers were allowed to rise unnecessarily. There was no pre-mediation or planning, let alone a conspiracy on anyone’s part. It was simply an accident and hence there is no reason to sensationalise it or make it larger than life. From the very beginning, no attempt was made by the army to hush up the incident. One therefore cannot understand why a section of the media is bent upon making it sinister and trying to link it with other recent events.
  • In a 1.3 million strong army, where individuals interact with each other on a 24X7 basis, the odd aberration does occur. Despite discipline being ingrained in them from the very first day they don a uniform, and despite the excellent officer-man relationship that is nurtured on a continuous basis, tempers sometimes run high. All ranks do understand that it is this close relationship that sustains them even in the most difficult situations, but anger subsumes this temporarily. Despite the many ups and downs in the working environment of the army, officer-man relationship has endured. These are the facets that have contributed to making the Indian Army professionally highly competent and behaviourally the best in the business. This needs to be commended not criticized. I would urge those elements of the media that are going unnecessarily overboard in bashing the entire army to desist, for if such coverage continues, it will do great harm to the army and the nation.
  • The army has time-tested and well laid out procedures for dealing with all types of indiscipline. The media neither has the expertise nor the knowledge of doing so. Even those segments of the media that may have been goaded to unnecessarily raise the issue to absurd heights on account of their vested interests will do well to confine their reports to news and desist from voicing irrelevant views and comments. The country continues to have faith in the prowess and honesty of purpose of their army. It is best for amateurs of the media, however much they may think of themselves as the greatest media honchos, to let the army take remedial actions in their own professional manner. They will, in due course, share their conclusions with everyone.
    Let me end this piece by adding that the motto of the Regiment of Artillery of your army is “Izzat o Iqbalâ€, to which they adhere to scrupulously. This particular unit- “ 226 Field Regiment, will also bounce back, provided unnecessary hounding of the unit and its personnel comes to an end immediately.
    Comment:The corruption amongst the Officer Cadre need be investigated and exemplary punishment meted speedily. Indiscipline amongst Jawans is a different cup of tea- needs to investigated, correctives measures applied- Revolt and Mutiny is very rare. One should not confuse the issues!
    Balance and Restraint
  • Wednesday, May 23, 2012

    Revolt of Field Regiment in Ladakh: An Analysis

    Blame the Army's cover-up culture, not ‘colonial-era institutions'
    Manvendra Singh The Hindu, May 23, 2012

    Praveen Swami caught the wrong end of a long stick in his article “Ladakh troop revolt underlines Army class tensions” (The Hindu, May 13, 2012). His interesting analysis of the indiscipline and disorder by personnel of the Ladakh-based 226 Field Regiment was based on two arguments. His main argument was that the Army continued to run on antiquated arrangements which then created the conditions for troops and officers of the Artillery regiment to come to blows. Combustion is inbuilt in the functioning of the Army and the fracas at Nyoma in Leh was waiting to happen. He makes two points to underline this argument.
    First, the Army continues to run on “colonial-era institutions” and, second, that it remains “divided rigidly between sahibs and men, which allowed, enabled, or rather created conditions for tempers to boil over in Nyoma. Before responding to his line of reasoning, it is important to firstly condemn the incidents that happened in Nyoma. There are no grounds to justify, or let alone explain, the fisticuffs during the bara khana after the regiment had completed its field firing practice. It must be understood that a bara khana is standard procedure following any field firing, by any unit. That an Army tradition came to be marred by unforeseen incidents is a sad commentary on the calibre of officers who were holding staff and command appointments of the 226 Field Regiment. For they are the principal beneficiaries of what Praveen Swami has called “colonial-era institutions.”
    His first line of attack is on the continued practice of employing combat trained soldiers as the personal valets of officers — once called batmen by British Indian Army officers and now known as sewadars, sahayaks, and also buddies in many units. His argument is that this institution is outdated in today's India. It humiliates the soldier detailed for such duties with an officer. And because of its misuse, the Nyoma incident happened. Class tension is inherent in the structure of the Army, hence the fires of revolt in the 226 Field Regiment.
    There is a basic flaw in this reasoning. For if that were the case, the Army would long have been reduced to an institution wrecked by confronting its thousand inbuilt mutinies. But that has not happened and neither will the Army go that way. Regiments and battalions under far greater combat stress, and with far higher levels of battle training, would also have been stricken with this ailment. Infantry units, the primary application of force by the Republic of India, would not have been able to perform their basic military tasks if the “colonial-era institutions” remained the prevailing atmosphere in the battalion. The institution of sahayak is certainly an outdated one, and there can be no two views on that score. But it is not responsible, whatever its levels of misuse, for the acts of indiscipline in Nyoma.
    The second point raised in the report was about the Army being a house “divided between sahibs and men.” Sahib is an honorific bestowed on those who have attained certain ranks, officers or men. Officers are taught by tradition to address as “Sahib” those who have achieved such ranks even if they are junior in the command structure. Consider this: India's Army achieved one of its greatest military feats 25 years ago during this time of the year. On June 26, 1987, the 8 Jammu & Kashmir Light Infantry captured Quaid Post from Pakistan in the battle to dominate Siachen. The success of that operation was because of the extreme bravery of late 2/Lt Rajiv Pande who began the operation, that was completed by then Naib Subedar Bana Singh, for which he was awarded the Param Vir Chakra. To come to the point — even in the midst of the highest combat ever fought, Pande and Bana Singh would only address each other as “Sahib,” despite the vast difference in age and rank. That has been the practice ever since the Indian Army came to be made, and it will remain so. The addressing of someone as “Sahib” doesn't cause divisions in the Army. And neither does the presence of the ‘Sahib culture'. What causes divisions, and which lie at the root of the problems on display in Nyoma, is, in fact, of far more recent origin.
    The armed forces of India, unlike other government services, have a sharply pyramidal structure, both within a unit and as institutions as a whole. The competition of ranks is far higher in the armed forces than anywhere else in the country. And this is as true for officers as it is for enlisted men, for the number of junior commissioned ranks are few and far in between. This competition for higher ranks has created a culture of command that revolves around the “zero-error syndrome.” Simply explained, this essentially means the avoidance of risk so as to sail the waters calmly. When no risks are taken, no mistakes are made. So annual confidential reports remain sanitised to the last line and the grading is excellent. Thus, promotions are easier achieved provided the examinations and courses are also graded well. True of men as also of officers. But human life is not so mechanical, and military life less so. The lure of higher ranks, however, requires that the record be spotless, so units do what they know best: brush the mess under the carpet. Lapses are routinely covered up, and command failures remain un-reported, or at best under-reported.
    The failings of command, thus, come to be hidden, from platoon level upward. It is plain to the eye who is and is not fit for the higher ranks. But the military bureaucracy only looks at sterilised pieces of paper in the Military Secretary's Branch. Who they select for commanding a combat unit may really not be fit for that appointment, intellectually, physically or even morally. Murphy's Law is the most popular dictum in the armed forces, and it catches up some time or the other. In Nyoma, it caught up with the 226 Field Regiment. It is certain that this regiment has had numerous incidents of indiscipline in the past. None came to be reported, or they were covered up. Indiscipline to the point of revolt does not only affect those in the unit, but even those commanding higher formations. Accountability in the Army is lateral and vertical. So to avoid stains, some in the past have ignored goings on inside the 226 Field Regiment. All that it required was an incapable officer and an incapacitated soldier to come together, and they did in Nyoma. First-rate officers and first-rate soldiers in other units continue to perform commendably by “colonial-era institutions.” It is obvious the first-rate are not in the 226 Field Regiment.
    (Manvendra Singh is co-convener of the Bharatiya Janata Party's defence cell. He was a member of the Standing Committee on Defence in the 14th Lok Sabha.)
    Blame the Army's cover-up culture, not ‘colonial-era institutions'

    Tuesday, May 22, 2012

    IETE Governing Council

    Dear All,
    1. We are delighted to learn that certain members of IETE have sought the candidature of Lt Gen SP Kochhar, AVSM**, SM, VSM, ADC our SO-in-C for the election as member of IETE Governing Council 2012-15.
    2. We are sanguine that all our esteemed members of IETE will whole heartedly support the election of SO-in-C to the IETE Governing Council.
    Visit webpage: IETE
    Governing Council 2011- 12
    What is IETE?
    The Institution of Electronics and Telecommunication Engineers (IETE) is India's leading recognised professional society devoted to the advancement of Science and Technology of Electronics, Telecommunication & IT. Founded in 1953, it serves more than 70,000 members through various centres, whose number is 62, spread all over India and abroad. The Institution provides leadership in Scientific and Technical areas of direct importance to the national development and economy. Government of India has recognised IETE as a Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (SIRO) and also notified as an educational Institution of national eminence. The objectives of IETE focus on advancing electro-technology. The IETE conducts and sponsors technical meetings, conferences, symposia, and exhibitions all over India, publishes technical journals and provides continuing education as well as career advancement opportunities to its members.

    National Defence University

    Ministry of Defence 21-May, 2012 16:30 IST
    The Union Cabinet, in its meeting held on 13th May, 2010, has accorded "in principle" approval to setting up the Indian National Defence University (INDU) at Binola in District Gurgaon, Haryana. The Government of Haryana has issued the Notification for the acquisition of land. Educational Consultants of India Limited, (EdCIL) a Public Sector Enterprise under the Ministry of HRD has been appointed as a consultant for the preparation of the Detailed Project Report, the Layout Plan and Draft Act & Statutes for setting up the university. An estimated expenditure of Rs.295 Crore (at the rates of year 2010) for setting up the university and Rs.162 Crore (at current rates) for the acquisition of land is likely to be incurred.
    In INDU it is proposed inter alia to conduct courses of varying durations on subjects ranging from Strategic Studies, War Gaming and Simulation, Neighbourhood Studies, Counter Insurgency and Counter Terrorism, Chinese Studies, Evaluation of Strategic Thought, International Security Issues, Maritime Security Studies, Eurasian Studies, South East Asian Studies, material acquisition, joint logistics, national security strategy in peace and war, etc. It is projected that the establishment of INDU and its constituents will be spread over seven years. This information was given by Minister of Defence Shri AK Antony in a written reply to Shri Inderjit Singh Rao in Lok Sabha today. PK/NN   (Release ID :84266)
    National Defence University

    Army Line of Succession Trend is Dangerous

    “The line of succession has been designed by divine right of General J J Singh... the bureaucrats in the PMO have persisted in this. What is the motivation behind this campaign?”
    Former Indian Army Chief Gen JJ Singh worked out plans for Bikram Singh to take over
    Thursday, March 15, 2012 Anonymous
    M.G. Devasahayam | The Weekend Leader

    As is well known, bureaucracy is an organization of non-elected officials of a government or organization who are rule-bound and function under institutional norms and standards. Adhocracy operates in opposite fashion and cater more to individual or group agenda rather than functioning under institutional norms and standards.
    In the last few years, Indian Administrative Service, the bulwark of India’s bureaucracy, has been mutating itself into an agenda-led adhocracy. This ‘liberalisation’ agenda, co-promoted by Government, Multi-National Corporations and India’s Corporate Sector, include 100 percent FDI by real-estate; land-grab license for SEZ; surrendering tribal forests to mining giants; billions worth of nuclear bonanza and feeble civil liabilities for energy behemoths; ramming GM-cotton and food down people’s throat; mortgaging India’s farming to US interests through ‘Knowledge Initiative in Agriculture’ and ‘Agriculture Cooperation and Food Security’ MoUs; globalizing retail trade and grand entry of foreign universities into India!
    This agenda is in vast variance with the ‘growth aspiration’ the country started with at independence. In the vision of the Father of the Nation, Independent India would be sui generis, a society unlike any other, in a class of its own.
    Gandhi’s India would not go for gigantic, FDI-funded development projects and large-scale industry and mining, typical of market-led growth under capitalism. Instead, India would pursue an equitable, participatory, small-is-beautiful, need-based, inclusive, balanced development while conserving nature and livelihoods. It is to nurture this socio-economic ethos that IAS was established and covenanted in the constitution.
    The present-day neo-liberal agenda is just the opposite, seeking an India of market-making MNCs, millionaires and billionaires, a middle class of 300 million providing that market and the rest of 800 million Indians surviving as barely literate, malnourished multitude. This agenda is being driven by a new breed of adhocracy within the IAS that has come about through inbreeding and rank favouritism.
    Ever since UPA government under Manmohan Singh assumed power (2004) two kinds of adhocracy have been shaping up. One was born of the ‘clan-within-clan’ inbreeding being practiced by a ‘linguistic-parochial’ group that at one point of time occupied almost every top-job in Delhi’s corridors of power.
    The other is the ‘loyalist-core’ put together to implement the neo-liberal agenda. With the active participation of PMO patriarchs, spread of ‘clan-within-clan’ adhocracy was fast and furious capturing several key positions of ‘might and money’. And barring honourable exceptions, other coveted positions went to agenda-men anointed by the ‘Moneyed and the Mighty’.
    Bureaucracy was meant to administer through laid down rules. The ICS was called the steel frame, precisely for this reason. ICS men viewed any deviation from the rules as a misdemeanor. Its successor, the IAS endeavoured to keep up the standards. Though there were hiccups, the bureaucratic system by and large ensured that men/ women with merit were not denied their due place in promotions and postings.
    Adhocracy on the other hand is being nurtured through blatant violation of processes and procedures to ensure that the top positions of Government, Joint Secretaries, Additional Secretaries and Secretaries, are held only by the clansmen and their agenda-abiding loyalists. Such adhocracy, which is antonymous to rule-bound bureaucracy, has substantially skewed and compromised the decision making process and standards. The result is for all to see; policy failure in almost all fronts, suffocating corruption and near total collapse of governance.
    As if by intent, adhocracy seem to have permeated the Army Headquarters also as it did in the civil citadel. Sometime in 2005, out of the blue, the then Chief of the Army Staff (General JJ Singh) initiated the unique ‘look down policy’ to determine the ‘line of succession’ to the top position in the Army.
    He was not looking for immediate succession but was looking deep-down to the year 2012 and found one favourite - Brigadier Bikram Singh. The Chief also realised that events and dates relating to the then Major General VK Singh, who was sure shot to become Army Chief in 2010, needed to be manipulated if Bikram Singh was to succeed him in 2012!
    Once this sub-agendum was set, things started moving. Someone in the MS Branch ‘discovered’ VK Singh’s UPSC application form mentioning 1950 as his year of birth and this was the ‘brahmastra’ to be used to truncate and restrict VK Singh’s tenure as the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) to a two year period, so that the passage could be cleared for Bikram Singh to take over in May 2012. The massive documentary proof establishing 1951 as General’s YoB was ignored. A dismal charade of seeking ‘acceptance’ of 1950 from VK Singh as his YoB was played out.
    But there were more hurdles. At that point of time, this favourite was not a front-runner as there were other officers ahead of him, who needed to be ‘eliminated’ at the COAS’s level itself with a bit of deft manoeuvring. A list was prepared, nick-named ‘Op MOSES’ which implied that the Chief would part the waters like in the ‘Ten Commandments’ for Bikram Singh to smoothly walk through! Like a family tree in reverse, Op MOSES listed few potential threats - Brigadiers and Major Generals of higher calibre - who were dealt with and pushed out one by one either through supersession and non-empanelment! For this purpose even ‘records of service’ were tinkered and tampered with and some even made to disappear.
    The fallout of this crude manipulation indulged in by the military adhocracy was the sordid age-row of VK Singh that has rocked the nation. The actual DoB is a matter of record as rightly observed by the Supreme Court. But what is of concern is the manner in which the controversy was first stoked, then fanned and finally, brought into play. This calls for thorough investigation. This is all the more urgent because it is alleged that TKA Nair, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister was behind this brazen manoeuvring. Well before the age controversy came out in the open, Nair is reported to have told his confidants that VK Singh had to go in May 2012 because the ‘Prime Minister had assured his wife that General Bikram Singh would be the next COAS’.
    Incidentally this gentleman was the chief mentor of the civil service adhocracy! We have seen the neo-liberal agenda for creating and nurturing the civil adhocracy. But what is the agenda for the military adhocracy? This begs the question. But corruption and carpetbagging could be a possible answer. It is believed that there are IB reports about massive kick-backs in the still-born Eurocopter deal and a top Army brass has reportedly transferred 22 million Euros (Rs. 145 crores) to his relative in Paris through hawala post. But unfortunately for him the deal fell through and he had the consternation of returning the moolah! As if to compensate, this man was rewarded with a coveted civil position with powers to award thousands of crores worth of construction contracts! Now, with huge weapon/equipment purchase deals either being processed or pending in the Army HQ a pliable adhocracy is needed to serve the MNC agenda. With the state turning into a non-functioning kleptocracy, corruption is the common denominator between civil and military adhocracy. Of late we have seen several cases of swindling and misappropriation in which General Officers have been court-martialed and dismissed from service. Many more must be lying buried.
    Sensing danger the civil-military adhocracy has combined to hound out General VK Singh who does not fit into the adhocracy mould. Bulk of the media including ‘reputed’ scribes and defense analysts partnered with the kleptocrats in this despicable task, which indeed is the real tragedy!
    M.G. Devasahayam is a retired IAS officer, who had served in the Indian army before he joined the civil service. He had taken part in the Indo-Pak War of 1965 and counter insurgency operations in Nagaland. The views expressed in the above article are based on information from his sources in the defence establishment.
    Former Indian Army Chief Gen JJ Singh worked out plans for Bikram Singh to take over
    Comment: Gen JJ Singh the earlier Chief was rewarded by the Arms Lobby by appointing him Governor... Gen Deepak Kapoor former chief is an ardent worshipper of arms lobbyists unluckily got entangled in the Sukhna and Adarsh Land Scams (still hoping for more)... he has already collected the rewards from various arms dealers... The wheels of Justice is just slowly turning around. TKA Nair was gifted land by BEML to shut his mouth and eyes to Tatra Money Laundering Cycle- He wanted Gen VK Singh to go...PM's close aide TKA Nair caught in land row: click Here... these shameless bureaucrats have made our nation a haven for Money Laundering and Generation of Black Money- signalling to where we are heading.... A Democratic Banana Republic.

    Sunday, May 20, 2012

    Tatra-Vectra-Rishi triangle a threat to defence?

    Rishi’s Vectra Group is the real financial gainer?
    A source and senior BEML employee who has worked closely with Tatra truck deals told DNA that Rishi has been “managing” Tatra deals and used to get Tatra orders cleared every year by bribing officials in the Indian Army and BEML. His company is the real beneficiary of this Tatra deal and he might have wanted to push Gen VK Singh to sign the deal clearing another tranche of trucks, said the source.
    According to the Czech complaint, Tatra Czech’s board of executives is obligated under the law to exercise its role diligently. However, by allowing Tatra Czech to supply completely knocked down (CKD) sets of Tatra freight vehicles to BEML Ltd indirectly (via Tatra Sipox/Vectra Group), Tatra Czech is stripped of any profit, which is undoubtedly not diligent. “At a common rate of 0.96 million CZK per set and a usual margin of 10%, TATRA Inc. suffered between 2005 and 2010 a loss of profit of 270 million CZK,” the complaint states. It is obvious that due to this indirect sale, Tatra Czech commits tax evasion to the scale of several dozens of millions of Czech Korunas, says the complaint.
    Vectra Group a Tax Evader?

    Isn't Tatra-Vectra-Rishi triangle a threat to defence? by Sankar Ray
    The Tatra Truck scam unfolds like an unending chain reaction. Revelations, one after another, bring out stupefying details. Much before General V K Singh divulged the alleged Rs 14 crore kickback offer, Czech website carried an explosive interview with Václav Láska, a former high-ranking police investigator, lawyer and an exregional head of watchdog Transparency International on 27 April last. The major stakeholder of the Czeck truck manufacturer faced severe financial crisis due to tunneling and tax evasions. Speaking to the widely read Czech daily Právo, Láska disclosed that a criminal complaint was lodged against the management of Tatra trucks and one of the firm's major shareholders, Indian businessman Ravinder Kumar Rishi, deputy chairman of Tatra's supervisory board, and the owner of Vectra Limited. The sale of truck parts at knock-down prices to India via an intermediary British company damaged the company, it stated. Criminal complaint from the Czech government is too crucial for the Indian ministry of defence (MoD) to ignore. "If the criminal complaint is deemed to be justified, steps could be taken which will curtail further losses and also stop additional tax evasion," Láska told Právo.
    The Czech manufacturing firm which has been supplying complete knock-down kits containing all the components of haulage to the India's central public sector undertaking BEML Limited where the vehicles are assembled, incurred losses running into millions of crowns. Láska told the Czech morninger, "The Tatra company sells kits to the British company Vectra Limited without a profit margin, and even at prices lower than the cost of manufacturing. All margins from this business go only to the accounts of the British company. The fact that the representatives of Tatra allow these transactions clearly contradicts the principles of sound economic governance."
    Was the MoD, particularly the defence minister A K Antony whose DNA is his unimpeachable integrity unaware of the news in one of the largest selling dailies in Prague? It's very unlikely. Diplomats at the Indian embassy in Prague read and scan the Czech daily regularly. The so-called defence analysts - I mean the majority of them - might have kept their eyes closed and ears shut as these pundits keep defence establishment in good humour. About the Institute of Defence Studies and Analysis which receives substantial funds from the MoD, the less said, the better.
    British-registered intermediary firm Vectra Limited, the intermediary, frequently purchased the CKD kits at below production cost. The role of biggies at the helm of the Indian PSU BEML which assembles the vehicles and their bonhomie with their counterparts in Vectra Limited that frequently purchased the CKD kits at below production cost is murky and has to be probed. Let the defence pundits be kept at bay Rishi has been the de facto negotiator for both Tatra and Vectra. Láska snapped fingers at Rishi for indulging in misinformation for pecuniary gains. In 2010, alone Tatra sold 600 CKD kits to the BEML ( other than additional commitment of 460 kits in the same year).
    Doubts about under-the-table deals are no hearsay based, nor is the total amount of kickbacks confined to barely Rs 14 crores. The subterranean transactions in which were involved people who were not in uniform must have been several times more. Mr Antony knew everything but remains mum, very much contrary to his style of politics and ministership. Was he being prevented by a any extra-constitutional authority from dealing with the matter freehandedly?
    According to Láska, between 2005 and 2010, Tatra incurred losses in potential profit to the tune of Kč 270 million (Rs 750 crores). He based his calculations on a profit margin of 10 percent per kit. The management intentionally forfeited for selling the goods to Vectra Limited at a knock-down price. "By transferring the considerable profits to the British company, the Tatra company reduced its income tax payments by tens of millions of crowns," he added That means the Czech Republic had to absorb 10 per cent loss due to under-invoicing. But Vectra supplied trucks at more than 100 per cent of the amount for which Tatra sold in the open market. This scam goes abated for the last ten years and if Rishi cheated Czechs by 10 p.c., MoD or BEML's financial damage is ten times more.
    Trucks produced by Tatra, one of the world's oldest manufacturers of motor vehicle, enjoyed a high reputation during the 'communist' era. The quality of the trucks is not known to have been questioned. The successful launch of Agni - ICBM was from Tetra trucks. The question is about the murky role of arms dealers or the intermediaries for whom business ethics has no meaning.
    Isn't Tatra-Vectra-Rishi triangle a threat to defence?

    Loud Mouth Brajesh Mishra Brags

    More Dope on Loud Mouth Brajesh Mishra
    by K. Gajendra Singh
    An extract from my article
    Decrepit Publicity Hog BC Mishra Spouts Nonsense

    Now former National Security Advisor, a decrepit Brajesh Mishra has been brought out of the dead cobwebs. He told Karan Thapar on TV that he held both the minister and the general responsible for not taking action on the bribery allegation but wanted Gen V K Singh to be sent on forced leave. "My view is that both the minister and the Army chief are responsible for not taking action," he said commenting on the allegations by Gen Singh that he was offered a bribe of Rs. 14 crore for clearing a contract for trucks and had informed the Defense Minister about it.

    Asked whether the army chief should be sacked or sent on compulsory leave, Mishra told Karan Thapar on the Devil's Advocate programme that "If he is sacked, then something more may happen. If he is sent on compulsory leave, he is not being sacked. He should be told that enjoy your two months’ vacation with government salary and then take pension and go home."

    How very considerate but trite of Mishraji. A former Indian diplomat Mishra was removed in 1980 as Indian Envoy from his New York post for not following the policy on Afghanistan of the newly elected Indira Gandhi govt in1980. He was adopted by Washington and given a cushy job in UN.

    Son of formidable senior Congress leader late DP Mishra, Brajesh soon came close to AB Vajpayee and became his evening companion. Power and publicity hungry, he was National Security Advisor and defacto PM as Principal Sec to PM Vajpayee. He tried to run MEA too. He was stopped from hogging publicity by his detractors in BJP. The job of Principal Sec to PM is rightfully for a senior IAS officer. An expert on multilateral diplomacy i.e. fighting over commas and full stops, Mishra had little experience or expertise in administration and finance. IAS officers in PMO ran circles around him, enriching themselves and letting their friends and patrons, India’s emerging robber barons loot the exchequer. This was later described as India Shining era. The BJP was ousted from power. How the corporate robber barons thrived when Mishra was de facto PM needs investigation and a serious case study. But similar policies have continued.

    Karan Thapar’s TV interview was a trite. It was pathetic and unbecoming performance by Mishraji brought out from the cobwebs to tarnish an upright and honest Army chief.

    Sometime ago Mishra had rightly opposed the Indo-US Nuclear agreement, from which India has gained little and lost very much. But Mishra soon changed sides merely to remain in limelight and be on the US high table (dinner!).

    I am disappointed that anchor Karan Thapar has changed sides. He should know how his own father the Army Chief was humiliated and removed for mistakes committed by those appointed to senior command posts by interfering and scheming politicians and self-serving civil servants.

    On Mishra’s connection with Zionist lobby and Neo-Cons, who planned and executed US led illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003, which strategically and historically can be compared with Nazi Germany‘s invasion of the Soviet Union in WWII .The sacrifice of Israeli resistance and people has destroyed the US army, i.e. its ground forces leading to US hyper power’s decline and likely fall sooner than later.
    More Dope on Loud Mouth Brajesh Mishra
    Comment: A pathetic interview indeed. Will go down in history as to what type of Scumbags a few bureaucrats are... truly are after retirement- what limelight for their misdeeds?

    Chief General V K Singh reaches out to ex-servicemen

    Rallies only for welfare of ex-servicemen: Army Chief
    Manu Pubby : Palra, Thu May 17 2012, 00:53 hrs

    In one of his last public appearances before he demits office at the end of this month, Army Chief General V K Singh reached out to ex-servicemen at a rally near his hometown, asserting that he always tried his best to address their grievances during his two years in office. Addressing a gathering of close to 7,000 veterans, Gen Singh seemed to be clearing his position about attending a series of ex-servicemen rallies, saying it was part of a plan to reach out to retired soldiers in places where “no one has gone before”.
    In an interview to The Indian Express, Lt Gen (retd) Raj Kadyan, who heads the Indian Ex-Servicemen Movement, had questioned the motive and timing of the recent ex-servicemen rallies. Kadyan was also present at the rally but did not address the gathering.
    “In the last two years, we have tried to take forward your demands — be it One-Rank-One-Pension, family pension or any other — to the government.... I urge you to ask your public representatives to pressure the government,” said the Army Chief.
    Meanwhile, mediapersons who had been invited to cover the event were escorted out of the venue minutes before Gen Singh arrived.
    Gen Singh underlined more than once that the aim of the rally — and the several others he had addressed over the past few weeks — was only to reach out to veterans and solve their problems.
    Rallies only for welfare of ex-servicemen: Army Chief
    Comment: All ESM organisations should unite and work silently for welfare of veterans. I wonder why the earlier 3 Chiefs have done nothing in the recent past except for serving themselves- the Adarsh scam is a testimony to what extent our serving and retired ones goes to make a fast buck. Gen VK Singh is an exception and a true patriot- let us laud his role as Present Chief- He will be remembered for cleaning up the muck! Hope his successor contiues to redeem the Indian Army from Scandals and Vandals.


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