Land Acquisition: Kurushetra for Modi Government

farmers

Land Acquisition Bill blindly targets every land owned by the farmers. It is an undeclared emergency in the country. Despite heavy losses, farmers are proud to practice their profession. They are the life saviors of India. Without food grains where will the nation go? The Western mentality of destroying India’s agriculture indirectly through liberal advice, think-tanks and professionals are easily listened by every person who is occupying the seat of power in New Delhi. Why our governing people lose their head and thinking capacity? Instead of acquiring farm lands for private development, government must encourage private investment in agriculture. Farmers must be given loans at lowest interest, subsidy, encourage organic farming, discourage heavy usage of fertilizers and pesticides. Wastelands must be used for industry. If wastelands in villages close to ports and railway stations are used then there is no need for agricultural lands.

If agriculture is saved; India is saved. If farmers are destroyed then the nation is destroyed. Why to confront the wise farmers who are passionate to save this nation?

Times of India writes on 24 February 2015

Acknowledging the growing storm of opposition unity to changes in land acquisition legislation, Prime Minister Modi has sought cooperation of all parties, saying that “in a democracy, there should be dialogue, discussion and positive outcome.” President Pranab Mukherjee too sought “cooperation” from all MPs, telling both Houses of Parliament that the land acquisition law had been “suitably refined” even as he declared that the government attaches “paramount importance to safeguard the interest of farmers and families affected by land acquisition”.

The ordinance on land acquisition was part of Modi’s initial push to kick-start domestic investments. Yet, just weeks after the sobering Delhi verdict and under attack from motley opposition parties as well as groups within the Sangh Parivar – who accuse it of being “anti-farmer” and “pro-industry” – there are signs that the government may take a conciliatory approach and meet opposition half-way. The PM’s wedding diplomacy in Saifai with Mulayam Singh Yadav and Parliamentary affairs minister Venkaiah Naidu’s meeting with Congress president Sonia Gandhi reflect this new approach.

BJP’s problem is that it supported the original land bill when in opposition. It has contributed as much as anybody else to the aura of piety around the bill. But the fact is that stringent conditions in the original bill hobble economic growth and state governments, across party lines, have complained that its clauses are unworkable in practice. If farmers get fair compensation for their land, they shouldn’t be seen universally as “victims” of land acquisition. And it’s quite plausible that their children will be happier with jobs in industry than having to till subdivided plots of land inherited from their parents. There should be no shame in course correction now and it’s the government that must bell the cat.

While there may be some give and take on the fine print, Modi must stick to his guns while deploying all of his diplomatic skills in bringing sections of the opposition on board. In a make-or-break budget session which will be a test case for his credentials as an economic reformer, the fate of land legislation is symbolic. If Modi blinks it will give a negative signal to industry which is impatient for big-ticket reforms. Restrictions on buying land are one of the key reasons holding up projects worth almost $300 billion and the PM must walk his talk.

Menu of India for Obama

barack-obama-michelle-obama-india-dance-110710jpg-b5d25129c47d6839American President Barack Obama will be landing in New Delhi in next few hours. This is a historic visit because for the first time in the history of American history, its President will be staying outdoor out of the American soil for more than two hours. It is also significant for the new bilateral trade, military, scientific and human development co-operation between the two nations.
Although this trip of Obama is much hyped one needs to explore in deep and detail to describe the future relations between the two vital democracies of the world. Many analysts and self styled foreign policy experts may offer wide range of menu for the decision makers. But the following can be considered for the forward movement of India and USA.
1. Work out a genuine model of bilateral co-operation
2. Keep national and global interests in mind
3. Stop issuing threats of kicking out Indian immigrants from USA
4. Ensure the ecological safety in framing development policies
5. Stop spying Indian government and citizens
6. Exchange the best of human resources
7. Help India to grow for the universal development
8. Agree to end terrorism
9. Rein in Pakistan to weed out terrorists from its soil. Take India along in this mission
10. Give the best of everything and take the best of India
Krishna Srivatsa writes in The Times of India on 23 January 2015
What happens when the world’s biggest democracy and the world’s most powerful democracy come together? Is the resultant embrace genuine bonhomie or the squeeze of death? As President Obama touches down on India there are several things Prime Minister Modi can ask for, and better still hope to get at least some of.
India’s overall strategy vis-a-vis the United States must change a little. India needs to get out of its British roots, where we believe if something is given to one country or one group, then another country or group becomes automatically eligible for it. The US instead is a tale of Washington’s fabled ‘K Street’, home to all the major lobbyists and advocacy groups of America whose complex interplay determines the final vector of forces.
Thus India needs to step up to the table and articulate what it wants, for that’s the way the US system responds. A potent example of that is how over the years Nasscom has engaged powerful lobbying firms to liaise with the US administration on visas and other issues, with reasonably good success till the recent immigration problems cropped up.
For business visitors from India, immigration queues in American airports are often a nightmare. The US has offered advance immigration facilities in Abu Dhabi and it would be convenient if the same can be extended to Mumbai and Bangalore — helping frequent flyers from the corporate and especially IT sectors a great deal. The US offered it to other countries such as Ireland in the past and India can easily seek and secure this benefit.
That apart establishment of a US consulate in Bangalore, India’s Silicon Valley, will be a good signal to an industry which sends thousands to the US every year.
Second, recent research by the Peterson Institute of International Economics argues that the economic value of Indian migrants in America is close to $50 billion per annum, significantly higher compared to US imports of services of $19 billion and goods of $41 billion. To leverage the complete value of Indian immigrants in America the proposed ‘totalisation agreement’ — which will essentially help those who spend their working lives across the two countries by protecting their benefits and removing legal obstacles from receiving them in another country — needs to be fast tracked.
Third, US goods and services trade with India touched $100 billion in 2013-14 with India being America’s 18th largest goods export market and 10th largest goods import market. Whereas the US is India’s second largest export market after EU. In general, the US has been less open than is believed and needs to liberalise its trade regime more.
Government of India statistics show that between 2000-13, US equity inflows were just 6% of $314,902 million total FDI inflow into India. While there is talk of bilateral investment and trade treaties what must be borne in mind is, if we go ahead, the US will almost certainly ask for opening up FDI in multi-brand retail (which India should agree to, although this comes with serious political implications), tougher environment and labour standards (which it would be ill-advised to agree to), elimination of various tariffs on consumer goods, stronger enforcement of intellectual property rights, foreign ownership of retail banks/professional services firms and so on.
India might not be ready to do all these just yet, perhaps these are still a few years away. It would be too premature to expect India to sign the kind of carbon emissions capping treaty that the US signed with China last year (though it might be realistic to expect India to support the proposed climate change deal, which the US has been pushing).
In which case, the moot question is should we be discussing new trade or investment treaties at all?
Fourth, Obama and Kerry have raised the ante significantly with their anti-offshoring rhetoric. Investment is as much a matter of sentiment as it is of economic fundamentals. Obama and Kerry can’t keep saying ‘We are getting Bangalore-d’ if US companies are to deepen economic ties with India. If Obama finds it difficult to approve of offshoring to India he should at least remain silent, instead of making it the new four-letter word in Indo-US economic relations.
The logic of markets should be allowed to dictate the decisions of individual US companies vis-a-vis India, not political or other artificial quotas buttressed by negative sentiment emanating out of America’s highest offices.
The two countries should also break the old impasse over Indian laws that makes equipment suppliers liable for accidents at nuclear plants. Globally the burden is usually on plant operators; the absence of this in India has negatively impacted US companies from entering the nuclear power sector despite landmark civil nuclear agreements signed a decade ago.
India and the US have been dating each other for some time now, despite irritants and alternate suitors. Two decades after economic reforms, India has now firmly put away its leanings towards Russia and the erstwhile socialist bloc. The time is ripe for a durable relationship between India and the US. Both sides need each other more than before. This embrace can’t be fatal but has to be friendly, for each side to benefit the other.

Migrants & Parochialism in Delhi: Lessons from Nido Tania’s Death

Nido TaniaParochialism is the main villain. This villain is playing havoc in Delhi often. Yesterday’s killing of Nido Tania a first year student of a private university in Punjab for protesting racial comments about him is a devastating news.

Delhi has been very insensitive city with migrants forming the majority of the population. It is high time that the capital city gets sensitised and sanitized. Another incident like this should never happen again.

Times of India reports on 1.2.2014

A first-year student of a private university in Punjab, son of an Arunachal Pradesh MLA, died after being severely assaulted by a mob in Lajpat Nagar on Wednesday. The attack was provoked by the student’s protest against a racial taunt and, by all accounts, those who witnessed the shameful incident didn’t care to intervene.

The 19-year-old student, Nido Tania, wasn’t expecting the assault since he had paid off a shop-owner whose glass counter he had smashed in a fit of rage. But once the cops had left, he was beaten up brutally and died at a friend’s place in his sleep.

Tania’s father, Nido Parimal, is an MLA from Raga constituency in Arunachal Pradesh. The police have registered a case of murder under section 302 of IPC and are probing the matter. A magisterial inquiry has been ordered.

Joint commissioner of police Robin Hibu has been roped in to help in the probe. “We have detained three persons and are questioning them. Apart from a case of murder, we have also added sections of the law relating to prevention of atrocities against SCs and STs in the FIR,” Hibu told TOI. He added that further action will be taken based on the postmortem report.

According to AIIMS sources, the initial findings of the autopsy indicate that internal injuries may have caused the death though this is not conclusive. Viscera samples have been sent for further toxicology examination.

The incident has once again highlighted how despite some lip-service, Delhi Police personnel have not been sensitized to problems that may arise from racial prejudices and stereotyping. Tania should have been escorted to safety and not left among people whom he had antagonized and who had already turned violent.
Tania lived in Jalandhar and was a student of BA first year in Lovely Professional University. He was in Delhi on a holiday and had been staying with a friend at a house in Green Park Extension.
The incident took place when Tania had gone to the area to meet a friend. According to his family and friends, around 1:30pm on Wednesday, he entered a shop, Rajdhani Paneer Bhandar, to ask for the address as he was unable to locate the house.
Shopkeeper Farman allegedly mocked him for his dyed hair and made a racial comment. “He hurled a racial slur at him,” alleged Nido Jose Apil, his uncle. “It wasn’t the first time that he was made fun of because of his hair. He had faced it earlier too and used to get angry about it,” said his cousin brother Pota Nada. This led to an argument. Tania lost his cool and smashed the glass counter of the shop. The shopkeeper called out to the labourers working around the shop and they began to thrash him. Meanwhile, the police were called and Tania was handed over.

Unknown to the cops, Tania and the shopkeeper had already reached a compromise and he had agreed to pay him for the damage. The family claimed he paid Rs 11,000. “He paid the money though he wasn’t at fault,” said Apil. “There was a brawl and the cops had arrived. We rushed out and saw this boy, whose hair was dyed blond, bleeding. The shop owner, Farman, told us he had vandalized his property,” said Ajit Singh, a neighbour.

When the cops took Tania to the Lajpat Nagar police station around 2pm, he refused to file a complaint and gave them in writing that he had compromised with the shop owner. To confirm his claim, the police went back with him to the spot. “Farman told the cops that Tania had paid him and they didn’t want to pursue the case. After that the cops left. But Farman had by then called more men and they all thrashed him,” said Apil.

None of the shopkeepers and residents intervened to save Tania. Brijesh Kumar, who sells cigarettes and paan, said: “We heard people abusing at the top of their voice. But when the cops came, we knew it would be settled. I didn’t leave my shop as people get into a scuffle here every other day.”

Tania apparently got a tetanus injection on the way back to his friend’s house. According to his friends, he reportedly complained of chest pain at night and took a painkiller. “He drank some milk but threw up within a few minutes,” said Vinay, one of his friends.

On Thursday afternoon around 1pm when his friend tried to wake him up, he found Tania wasn’t responding. He was rushed to AIIMS where he was declared brought dead. Sources in AIIMS said he would have died by 4am.

“Tania had told us he was feeling unwell when he had gone to his friend’s place but we could not understand what had happened,” said Nido Shanti, Tania’s aunt.

 

Unsuccessful charter schools

Charter schools are a big failure in America. That big failure has been touted as the suitable solution to the ailing Indian education system. What a paradox? A mega failure is recommended as the success policy! The Union Government must immediately terminate the charter school idea and pump in adequate reformations to clean the school system with more proactive participation of the state and citizens.

The Times of India writes (9 November 2009)

Nuts and bolts of the right to education law is still being put in place but the HRD ministry is getting serious suggestions from a host of private education providers to implement the concept of `charter schools’ in India.

The ministry is unlikely to fall for charter schools and a formal response will be given out soon. However, sources said these schools had shown mixed results in the US and elsewhere but were being pushed in India by a strong private sector school lobby to skirt the mandated 25% reservation that all schools have to give to underprivileged children under the RTE Act. Charter schools were against the concept of equity and access, the source said.

Started in the US in 1991, charter schools simply mean leasing the administration and management of government schools to private education providers and NGOs while the funding is done by the state. The only responsibility of private education providers is the promise of better results which is made part of the charter. In case of India, it would mean handing over 1.3 million government-run primary and secondary schools to NGOs and private sector. The argument for charter schools, sources said, was based on poor performance of government schools and the growing tendency even in small towns and villages to put children in private schools.

But ministry sources pointed out that free-market ideology and freedom of choice could not be used to hand over government schools to private sector. Basing their argument on studies done on charter schools in the US, sources listed reasons why this model would not work in India. These schools become for-profit charter schools undermining the role of state in imparting free and compulsory education to all. In US, many states like Wisconsin, California, Michigan and Arizona allowed for-profit corporations to run charter schools resulting in profits being diverted instead of investing it back on education. A National Education Association study showed that for-profit charter schools rarely outperformed traditional state schools.

Ministry sources also pointed to studies that showed charter schools increased competition among schools in an area. At the same time, a study by American Federation of Teachers found that students attending charter schools did not fare any better or worse statistically in reading and maths scores than students attending public schools.

The Caroline Hoxby study on educational outcome was the only one that said charter school students did better than their counterparts in public schools. However, her study ran into controversy and she had to supplement her first report but the methodology was still considered suspect.

Somdev – Tennis Sensation

The Tripura boy born in Assam, groomed in Chennai and United States – Somdev Devvarman is the new Indian sensation. Sania Mirza created the same ripple few years back. Now an Indian male tennis star has come to the global tennis circuit. He sent Croatia’s Ivo Karlovic to pack his bags the other day. The Chennai open brought cheers to the Indian tennis lovers. The world’s No.25 and the fourth seed at the Chennai Open – Ivo Karlovic was defeated 7-6(4), 6-4 by Somdev. Before this he trounced former world No.1 and two-time Chennai open Champion Carlos Moya. With these victories Somdev is moving fast to clinch the championship at his training ground.

Despite 6 feet 10 inches threatening height of Ivo Carlovic, Somdev hot pursued the Croat and gave a bitter defeat. All the thunderbolts fired at the small India were smashed. With his trademark passing shots he checkmated the Croat hero on the court.

His parents – PK. Devvarman and Rajana Verman were very supportive for his success. Somadev’s father was in the income tax department of Chennai. From the tennis courts of Chennai Somdev learnt to fight coolly his battles.

Every Indian is cross fingered to see the crowning of Somdev as Chennai open’s champion. With the home support reaching the high peak, one expects him to give his nation the jubilant moment.

Somdev’s life graph
DoB: February 13,1985
Place of Birth: Assam
Residence: Charlottesville (US)
Coach: Jacek Wolicki
Height: 5ft 11in
Racquet: Babolat Pure Drive
Spent 3 years (2001-03) at Britannia Amritraj Academy under Ilyias Hussain and Ramalinga Reddy
Virginia’s all-time career singles winner with 156 victories
One of 13 to have won back-to-back NCAA Division I singles titles
Owes a lot of his present game, fitness and mental conditioning to coaches at University of Virginia – Brian Boland and Tony Bresky
Coming off a 3 week training stint with former world No.1, andy Roddick at his private residence in Texas”
Source: The Times of India, 12.1.2009, p.23
somdev

Future Superpower India’s Problems

The open pronouncement of India to be the future superpower creates nervousness among its close rivals. China is one of the prominent nations which are gravely concerned about India’s rising. Coupled with the neck to neck race of India with China in economy and other crucial areas, the high visibility of Indians in the international arena increases the communist nation’s anxieties. Although the Chinese leaders deny any antagonism towards India, in secrecy they aid all efforts to block India’s growth. For diplomatic brownie points they continue to speak high of India’s growth and achievement. One can notice these double standards of China from the near past events.

India did not get Chinese support for the candidature of Shasi Tharoor in the UN secretary general election. In the 2016 olympics bid India was not helped by Chinese. In the latest episode China blocked UN attempts to ban JUD (Jawud ud Dawa) the rechristened JeM (Jasheer e Mohammad) the deadly anti-India terror outfit operating from Pakistan.

It is nothing but natural for China to hinder India’s development indirectly. Any direct anti-India activities will be detrimental for the communist nation. Hence all possible support is given by China to Pakistan to checkmate India. This support is historical and more nearly half a century old. Aftermath of India’s independence Jawaharlal Nehru tried to close in with China and he succeeded little bit. But the over ambitions of China and conquer of Tibet strained both the nation’s relationships.

From late fifties to late eighties China was living in global isolation. Both its internal troubles and external hostility made China to soft tune in the international arena. Slowly it was preparing for the major global assault. Without much of its cards to the outer world, China built up its infrastructure and internal economy. There was a major transition in the political setup too. In the mid nineties elder communist leaders paved way for the younger generation. A strong economic foundation and one party rule helped the present political leaders to anchor strongly their image in the global arena.

The Chinese leaders are well aware of their weakness. Cleverly they managed to withstand global criticisms on the human rights in Tibet and conducted successfully the Beijing Olympics. Along with the strong diplomatic team the Chinese administration has conquered most of the Asian countries. Now they are quickly penetrating into the African continent. America, Europe and Australia often censor China for its poor human rights record. But they matter less when China has already brought rest of the world into its fold.

India must be aware of these underhand networks. Any threat to its development can emanate from anyone who is afraid of its growth. China is the potential nation spotted in India’s radar. Although the visibility is very thin Chinese role cannot be denied.

The United States of America was one of the potential aids to anti-India activities in the past. After the collapse of Soviet Union and the immediate threat posed by China, America is turning towards India. Green signal to the nuclear deal can be seen as anti-China syndrome of the Americans. In the nineties USA supplied F-16 aircrafts to Pakistan which was used for anti-India operations.

Thomas Reed and Danny Stillman, former director of intelligence of Los Alamos Laboratory in the forthcoming book, “The Nuclear Express: A political history of the bomb and its proliferation” that a nuclear weapon test was conducted for Pakistan by China on the Lop Nor test site on May 26,1990.

K. Subramanyam writes (TOI, 7.1.2009 P.18) “The Reed disclosure should dispel the mistaken impressions held by some Indians that the Indian nuclear test in May 1998 justified Pakistan going nuclear openly and that robbed India of the advantage of its conventional superiority because mutual number nuclear deterrence got established. In fact, Pakistan, by May 1998, not only had nuclear weapons while India had not yet conducted a specifically designed weapons test.”

From the past experiences it is clear that India is yet to learn practical lessons to chart its future course of development. Any amateur diplomacy would not leverage India’s success. First of all India must learn to soft tune its ambitions and strengthen its basics. It must fully use the 20 million strong diaspora. Any open reactions to China, Pakistan or any other nation should be stopped. The media must be reined in to stop giving run commentary on each and every strategy move of the nation. In this regard all those in the government should be stopped from leaking crucial information.

india

Censorship in the digital age

Digital technologies like Internet, mobile phone and computers banged the world with a claim to work freely. Suddenly there was an air of borderless world. Its popularity and power stunned the world nations. Governments lost track of digital power. Their radar of censorship got blocked by Internet. Information was flowing freely from anywhere to everywhere.

At one point of time there was a global movement try to control the world affairs. What was started in Brazil under the banner of World Social Forum threatened to break the iron cages of Governments. Independent people’s power of the world was half visible. Awaken by such critical realities; some countries tightened their information control. The axe fell on the Internet. Simply certain websites which are anti-national and provoking people to react were blocked.

Technologies which were part of younger generation were slowly impacting the elder sections too. Lagging behind in techno knowledge, Governments constituted cyber cells both to spread its information and to track its rebels and anti-establishments messages in the cyberspace.

China qualifies to the number one spot in censoring and blocking websites. No other country has so powerfully dealt with the Internet power than China. Jonathan Zittrain and Ben Edelman in their study found that collected two hundred thousand website samples and found that about fifty thousand were unavailable at least one and nineteen thousand were unavailable twice. BBC, CNN, US Court System were blocked. Some websites were clever enough to copy past the information from the blocked sites were available. It is a matter of popularity of the free expression of China sites that matter most to the Government. Tibet and Taiwan searches in the Google yielded no information or pro China news. Such was the strength of Government control over internet in China.

The Amnesty International says that the Chinese users were cleverer than their government by using proxy servers. It is the same case in information controlling Iran. The network system got popular from the university campuses. Slowly the anti-establishment students started spreading their message through Internet. Having successfully crushed down the print medium which was spreading anti-government messages, the Internet power came as a great shock.

Despite several tortures and control mechanisms Internet seems to be penetrating right to the end of the Government and hitting hard with antagonistic messages. Naturally the state control seems to be partial rather than totally ruthless. Off late the Chinese authorities are sending proxy pictures with anti-China message and infecting it with virus deliberately. This comes on the top of the searches and threatens the surfers not to download it. This exercise is repeated to fill many search results with virus attached messages and images.

One never knows the time of total takeover of Internet by the Government. Its power can be enhanced and upgraded any time. If a techno person takes over the Government then he/she will apply own mind to control the information. Rarely one can see a liberal implementing his prophecies. With the increasing terror threats anyone in the government will be compelled to give it as an excuse while ordering information control.
It is crucial to separate information freedom and information menace. Naturally every government should allow the free flow of information. Keeping track of the terrorists and troublemakers is a must. Indeed internet should be used proactively by the Government to track terror operators and help public to live peacefully.

Recession and Celebration

Recession is a reality in the current economic crisis. Corporate sector is clueless in managing the trouble.  Job cuts, slashing of salary, reduction in allowances, shutting down units which do not give huge profits, and other ways are followed to ward off the sudden death situation. Common people too face the music with the shooting inflation. How Indians are coping up with this gloomy economic condition? Any scale down in celebrations? The initial results show no reduction in the size of the festivities. With diwali nearing most people are continuing their usual fireworks and gifts exchange. One has to wait and see whether the economic crisis has altered the spending. Last year Rs.500 crores worth of gifts was exchanged.

 

Shops are making all out efforts to woo the customers. The gold price is coming down from Rs.14,000 to Rs.12,000 per 24 karat 10 gms. Dhanteras – an occasion to buy gold is celebrated with fanfare by the jewelers. The purpose of flashy advertisements about Dhanetras is to tempt the customers to buy gold. Non stop louder advertisements in television channels pull the people towards gold buying. Slowly and steadily they are coming to buy. Investment in gold is attractive due to the slump in stock market and banking sector.

 

Generally festivals are ought to be celebrated even with borrowed money. Lay-offs and economic crisis are temporary phenomenon which does not tamper with the spirit of the people. One of the important reasons for such undeterred festive mood is that it is suppose to dump the worries and look for bright future. For instance diwali is a festival which welcomes Goddess of money – Lakshmi to home. If one does not have money due to the economic crisis, he or she borrows money and do the grand puja to worship Lakshmi. So that the Goddess becomes happy and showers all the prosperity to the worshipped home.

 

India has too many festivals. There is no stopping of any celebrations. Durga puja, vijayadashmi and diwali come in a month’s time. After two months, New Year and harvest festivals. In north India, Holi comes in March which is a gala event. Apart from these major festivals there are region specific ones which are equally attractive.

 

Added to the misery of economic crisis, terrorist attacks during festival seasons have slowed down the spirit of shoppers. Diwali season has been the prime target time for terrorists to plant bombs. The dense packed markets provide chance for terrorists to strike at their will. Continuous terrorist strikes have compelled police to erect more security barriers. The fallout is also on the shopkeepers. This year only 35 whole salers were given license to sell crackers in comparison to 250 last year in Delhi. Breaking all these barriers most of the people are shopping and inspiring others to face the grave situation with confidence.

 

What does the recession mean for Indians? It is not the one stop shock for all. Recession affects different people differently. Those who have good stock of savings and assets need to worry about this situation. Nearly 35% of the Indian population belongs to this category. Another 30% struggle for everyday living and festivals do not matter for them. The final 35% of the middle category may feel little difficult but not completely out. They are salary class people who get into the routine mode of get credit, enjoy now and pay later trend. Who is finally affected by the recession? Those who lost heavily in the stock market crash and lost jobs in the financial tsunami are ones who faces heat in the diwali season this year.

 

Still diamond –encrusted watches costing more than a million Euros, Armani scarves, Louis Vutton bags, Mont Blanc playing cards, Vertu phones, golf sets and many more exotic gifts are all doing rounds in the wish list of gift givers.

 

Recession will come and go. Festive spirit is permanent. It should not be bartered for temporary troubles. Live king size life and enjoy every bit of the festival. Pray to Goddess Lakshmi to crush the crisis and continue to pour wealth. Who knows  will there be any gloom tomorrow?