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Monday, December 31, 2012

Cricket: Dhoni Ton In Vain As Pakistan Beat India In First ODI!

Junaid Khan
Team India never knows a thing when there is seam, swing and green. A cricketing fact that has been proved time and again over the years. There had been lot of rains in Chennai on Saturday and the match on Sunday was in doubt due to wet ground conditions and chances for more showers. Finally the match did start after some delay, but the conditions were still overcast, ground still moist and the wicket green. An ideal situation for the Pakistan fast bowlers in a day match starting in the morning. Pakistan won the toss for the third time in this tour and India faced the usual music right from the start. A perfect display of seam and swing bowling had the Indian stumps in tatters. Junaid Khan started India’s top order collapse by bowling out Sehwag who came into the One Day team just to go back to the pavilion in quick time. The Junaid fury went unabated to root out the stumps of Virat Kohli and Yuvraj Singh too, and had Rohit Sharma caught. Mohammad Irfan credited himself with the stumps of Gambhir. India were reduced to 29 for 5 in under 10 overs. Any cricket team would find this situation very difficult to recover from and come back into the match.

MS Dhoni
But India captain MS Dhoni nearly did it. First with Raina and then with Ashwin Dhoni started from scratches to build the innings—he took 86 balls to get to his half century and then pressed on the accelerator. At the most crucial time for his team Dhoni hit his 8th hundred in 212 ODIs and remained not out on 113. India reached 227 for 6 which looked impossible early on. In the final analysis Dhoni managed only to add respectability to the Indian total and the target of 228 for Pakistan was never going to be a winning one. Pakistan captain Misbah’s drop catch of Dhoni saved India from further embarrassment.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Ishant Sharma started with a fierce spell of fast bowling reducing Pakistan 21 for 2 in 10 overs, and run getting was proving to be extremely difficult. But India failed to keep up the pressure as Jamshed who laid anchors strongly was let off three times, and the Indian spin and slow bowlers, Ashwin and Yuvraj in particular failed to provide any breakthrough. Younus Khan (58) and Jamshed steadied the innings building a hundred run plus partnership and the solidity of Shoaib Malik (34 not out) in the end guided Pakistan to a rather easy victory with almost two overs to spare. Jamshed achieved a painstaking but rewarding century and he saw his team through remaining not out on 101. The Scorecard:

Pakistan now lead the ODI Series 1-0 defeating India by 6 wickets in the first one day international played in Chennai yesterday. Though featuring on the losing side MS Dhoni was adjudged the Player of the Match for his great efforts. However, playing true to his pitch-and-conditions mindedness Dhoni said after the match that the Chennai pitch played better in the Pakistan innings. Why doesn’t he instead analyze why his team continues to be clueless against seam, swing and green irrespective of where it plays?

The second ODI of the three match India-Pakistan Series is scheduled on January 3 in Kolkata. For the moment it is about ushering in the New Year 2013 and exchange of good wishes on both sides. We wish all our readers a Happy New Year 2013! Of course, on a subdued and sober note due to the tragic circumstances prevailing in the country now as is apparent in these pages.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Tony Greig (1946-2012): Tributes To A Great Cricketer!

We knew him those days only through the radio commentaries whenever India happened to play England. We are talking of the early seventies when television coverage was restricted to mostly New Delhi cricket Tests and there no possibility of any national telecast as there was no terrestrial network through satellites. Cricket came live to our homes only after 1982. Therefore we knew little about his towering 6.6 feet all-round field presence and much lesser about his utterances, antics and entertainment on the field. But even through radio commentaries he made his presence felt particularly in 1974 when England defeated India 3-0 in England with India getting shot out for 42 in the second innings of the Lords Test, and then again during 1976-77 England tour of India known as the John Lever ‘Vaseline’ Series when India lost again 3-1.  As a great cricketer he remained etched in our mind since then and his popularity later as a commentator, when we actually started seeing him, only realized his image for us.

Anthony William‘Tony’ Greig was South Africa born and got adopted for the English national cricket team through his Scottish parentage. He played for England from 1972 to 1977 and captained England from 1975 to 1977. In his brief English career he played 58 Tests (14 as Captain) scoring 3599 runs at an average of 40.4 with eight centuries. As a bowler who could bowl both medium pace and off spin Tony Greig captured 141 wickets with 6 five-wicket hauls. Since the one-day cricket World Cup was started only in 1975 he played just 22 one day internationals with 269 runs and 19 wickets. 

Tony Greig and controversy was made for each other. His utterances and antics created big controversies, but he never failed to entertain the spectators. He was one of the most popular international cricketers on the Indian cricket fields and later the most deft, excitable and delightful commentator. His biggest controversy came when he helped Kerry Packer make the breakaway World Series Cricket and lost his captaincy and place in the English team. Tony Greig became an English cricket commentator based in Australia then onwards.

Tony Greig died in Sydney yesterday following a heart attack. Only two months back he was diagnosed with lung cancer and the great cricketer knew his end was near. But the fighter never gave up his spirit, vitality and jovial nature. He left behind the burden of sorrow and irreparable loss on his fans and fellow cricketers.

Our tributes to the great cricketer, the expert commentator and the born entertainer.

Saturday, December 29, 2012


She dies. After 12 painful days of the most advanced medical treatment, care and attention. In New Delhi and then in Singapore. After the whole of India prayed for Her. After the Young India Movement For Change took up Her cause in thousands and thousands pouring onto the streets. After the most powerful dignitaries of the country wanted Her to live. After She wanted to live. Imagine the extent of damage caused to Her frail body by the fiends who are still alive in jail and are looking to get ‘justice’ from the courts over days, months and years to come. Is it just enough to say enough is enough?

She dies. She was a normal girl wanting to live a normal life. But in a country where depraved, sick and malignant males abound in She was born with the fatal disease of existing inside Her female body. Because in a country where people look up to mother Goddesses for blessings you cannot afford to have a female body and move around with it. These vultures are very different from Nature’s. These vultures attack, prey in, suck and feed on even alive bodies. For these the only requirements are that the bodies must be feminine, weak and defenseless.

She dies. Like so many other girls cursed to be born in female bodies in this lustful country. Like the Punjab girl who was gang raped, harassed by the rapists and the police in unison despite complaints lodged and diabolically driven to suicide. Like so many faceless females bodies littering the merciless country’s streets and so-called homes. The patriarchal horrors of the Indian society have just crossed the limits of tolerance.

She dies. The cries and the tributes are raging, pouring in this moment. The President, the Prime Minister and almost all in power and position have expressed their sorrow and paid rich tributes to the Braveheart. They all appealed for calm; because they all know that the continuing protests have just got ignited. As expected, the male dominated police forces reacted only by blocking roads to VIP areas of the national capital. Most reactions in this country are prompted by ‘maleness’ like the son of the President of India who described female protestors as ‘pretty pretty dented and painted women’. The patriarchal chauvinistic mindset has been allowed to live on more than enough.

She dies. Young India has been angry and seething over the last few days. Now it reaches the boiling point. This tremendous angst and anger must not unleash into mindless violence. This nation wide outrage must be converted into boundless energy and that energy must be directed towards shaking and demolishing the pillars of the Indian patriarchy. Women must be restored to positions of respect. Safety must be ensured for them.  The male vultures must be eradicated.

Awaken…India…awaken. Young India is leading you…Now For Change!

Friday, December 28, 2012

India Vs Pakistan: T20 Cricket Series Drawn As Yuvraj Wins Ahmedabad Match For India!

If Pakistan is winning India cannot be far behind! And vice versa! Whatever one of these two great competitive neighbors do the other can hardly accept and instead of reciprocation they prefer to retaliate! In politics non-acceptance translates shamelessly into denial, and in cricket defeat translates seamlessly into victory. Of course, Pakistan won the toss both the times and chased both the times…maybe that was unavoidable. But after Pakistan won the first T20 international cricket match in Bangalore India was in grave national danger of losing the Series and facing the music. That too…after five long years and being the benevolent hosts. Therefore India had to retaliate or rather deny Pakistan another victory. India won the second and last T20 international in Ahmedabad tonight defeating a valiant Pakistan by 11 runs thus sharing the honors equally with the Series drawn 1-1. 

Player of the Match Yuvraj Singh has delivered a tremendous match winning performance bringing back his past glory so emphatically. Put into bat India made a rousing start with openers piling up 44 runs in less than five overs. But when Gambhir got out at the team score at 44 followed by Rahane at 53 and Virat Kohli falling to a run out at 88/3 in 12 overs the familiar Indian story was unfolding again. But Yuvraj Singh had different ideas this time around. With a healthy run rate still maintained he blazed away to a stupendous 72 run knock in just 36 balls with 7 sixes and 4 fours. Skipper Dhoni (33 not out) gave him solid support and India reached a commanding total of 192/5 in allotted 20 overs. Though hit initially Umar Gul was brilliant again capturing four wickets—the only wicket taker for Pakistan.

Pakistan gave a fitting reply with openers Jamshed and Shehzad piling up 74 runs in about 10 overs when Ashwin made the first breakthrough. Yuvraj made it 84/2 the next over. Player of the Series Hafeez (55 not out) laid anchors for another crucial partnership with Umar Akmal. When Pakistan reached 146 in 16 overs looking set for an improbable victory the wickets started tumbling. The climbing asking rate and an accurate Dinda contributed largely to the slide. Finally the total of 192 proved too much for Pakistan and they folded up for 181/7 in allotted 20 overs. Continuing with his lapses behind the wicket captain Dhoni managed to save the T20 Cricket Series for now though. With the twists and turns part and parcel of the classic encounters between the two and the vice-versa factor added as a topping the three-match One-Day International Cricket Series that kicks off in Chennai on 30th December does not pretend to be but is indeed a mouth watering prospect. The Scorecard:

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Delhi Gangrape Victim Shifted And Admitted In Singapore!

The Government of India decided at its highest level to shift the 23 year old girl battling for life for the last eleven days out of India for better treatment. Accordingly late last night she was shifted from Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi and taken to Singapore by an air ambulance. She was accompanied by the doctor in charge. Few hours later she was admitted in Mount Elizabeth Hospital. The decision was taken because the girl continued to be critical after undergoing three abdominal surgeries and suffering two cardiac arrests. Her doctors reportedly consulted physicians and surgeons the world over and decided on Singapore as it was much nearer and that Mount Elizabeth Hospital is famous for advanced facilities and multi-organ transplants.

The doctors in Singapore today described the girl’s condition as extremely critical and she is undergoing treatment in the intensive care unit of the hospital. A multidisciplinary team of doctors has been taking all possible measures to stabilize her condition. The whole of India has been praying for her recovery. We appeal to all to join in the prayers. The girl must survive and inspire the Young India Movement for Change to go on fighting till the brutes are punished, strongest laws for rape are passed and the safety for women is fully ensured. The juvenile laws also urgently need to be changed, because a ‘minor’ (under 18) capable of committing the most brutal assault on a woman must be condemned as the worst criminal and must never be considered on his age. The teen monsters must be stopped at any cost as they form an integral part of the Subhuman Fiendish Horde. 

Meanwhile, the Young India Movement for Change picked up again today in Delhi defying prohibitory orders. Hundreds of protestors marched from South Delhi towards India Gate, but the police blocked them midway. The mystery over the death of the police constable, Subhas Chand Tomar, continued with multiple versions available about what happened last Sunday. While some eyewitnesses maintain that he collapsed chasing the protestors, Delhi police claimed that he was killed as the post mortem reports revealed that Tomar was beaten up before his cardiac arrest.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

T20 Cricket: Pakistan Beat India By Five Wickets In Bangalore!

Finally, cricket between the arch-rivals, India Vs Pakistan, gets a new lease of life with start of the international bilateral Cricket Series in Bangalore on December 25, 2012. Finally, Pakistan arrives in India and plays its first match against India after five years. And, a team not playing international cricket for more than two months beats a team that has been playing cricket, cricket and cricket both on field and off the field. Pakistan beat India by five wickets in the first T20 match played in Bangalore last night.

Although the match looked to be in Pakistan’s favor for most part of the game the usual pressure, tension and twists and turns associated with any cricketing encounter between the archrivals were there too. Pakistan won the toss and put India in. India looked to be in perfect command cruising to 77 for no loss in under 11 overs with a strong batting line to follow, but thanks to super bowling by Umar Gul and Saeed Ajmal Pakistan engineered a major Indian collapse with the latter losing 9 wickets for just 47 runs.  There was not a single half century in the Indian innings with Gambhir and Rahane scoring 43 and 42 runs respectively. The Indian total of 133 runs looked immensely gettable.

Again, it was not a smooth ride for Pakistan. New entrant Bhuvneshwar Kumar put them on the backfoot taking three quick wickets and reduced Pakistan to 12 for 3 in 3 overs. But then, the player of the match skipper Mohammad Hafeez (61) and Shoaib Malik (57 not out) steadied the innings. The progress was slow, but considering the modest total Pakistan was on course. Whatever, you cannot take an India-Pakistan cricket match for granted. With just 16 runs to win in almost 3 overs and 7 wickets remaining Pakistan had a hiccup losing two quick wickets and the asking rate suddenly climbed up.  With the wicket advantage still behind Pakistan finally romped home with two balls to spare. The Scorecard:

The second and the last T20 international will be played on Friday the 28th of December in Ahmedabad (the match was postponed by a day due to a local issue). The One Day International Series will start on 30th December with first match in Chennai. The second ODI will be played on January 3, 2013 in Kolkata and the last ODI coming up on January 6 in Delhi. As Pakistan goes back home after than England comes back to play the ODI Series against India.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

We Want Justice: The Young India Movement For Change And After..!

What happened in New Delhi on last Saturday and Sunday was perhaps unexpected for most of us, particularly for the Delhi authorities and the police. What happened in New Delhi on Saturday and Sunday was unprecedented for sure for the national capital. And therefore, the situation led to more debates about several other aspects and these are still raging. But the crucial debate following the brutal gangrape of a 23 year old girl in Delhi remains and is getting stronger day by day. “We Want Justice!” “Safety For Women Must Be Ensured!” 

Thousands of young students, boys and girls, descended on the most protected areas of Delhi right from the Saturday morning. Taken aback by the size and the unexpectedness, the police resorted to water cannons, tear gas shells and lathi charge giving rise to the debate if the police failed to handle a peaceful demonstration properly. There was violence in terms of stone pelting from the students leading to another debate if anti-social or political opportunist elements infiltrated the movement. Compelled by the size and the unexpectedness the Government of India announced measures that very day by evening. Proposed steps included making the rape laws stringent and paving the way for death penalty in rarest of rare cases, setting up of a judicial commission on women safety, suspension of several Delhi police officers for neglect of duty and others. But young India wanted immediate justice—severe punishment for the rapists and complete post trauma care for the victim.

The authorities and the police promulgated Section 144 to stop congregations, closed down several metro railway stations and blocked many roads leading to the VIP areas. But the Young India Movement defied everything and on Sunday thousands descended on the India Gate premises. As the upsurge tried to cross and break every barricade the police again resorted to stronger tactics. Violence of various forms broke out with injuries sustained on both sides. One police constable, Subhas Tomar, got severely injured due to alleged beating by youths and succumbed to his injuries today. The other debates got all the stronger.

Young India maintained that the peaceful nature of their Movement For Change and cried about police atrocities on innocent kids and even pregnant ladies. The police maintained its facts about the alleged infiltration and that the situation forced it to resort to strong measures. Several stock political opportunists and leaders took advantage of the mass upsurge to make mileage out of it and the death of the police constable and subsequent arrests made the situation delicate.

The main opposition political parties showed less concern for the issue and more for having another opportunity to pressurize and corner the Government leading to another debate if politicization of the issue would further slow down the process of justice for women. The Prime Minister of India addressed the nation yesterday appealing to all for maintaining calm, but the opposition parties still found it insufficient reiterating the demand for a special session of Parliament and all party meetings. Fortunately the 23 year old girl is better today, though still critical.

The thousands on the streets are getting thinner on Monday and today in Delhi and other parts of India no doubt, but the basic debate rages on. Young India has brought out everything in the open demolishing the secrecy, the privacy and the taboos. They have left no option for the nation but to feel shamed, shamed and shamed. Thanks to the efforts of the kids, the whole of India where Goddesses have been worshiped since times immemorial has now been arguing, thinking, interacting and debating about safety for women and prevention of atrocities against women. 

 The Young India Movement has indeed been guiding the nation surely and steadily For Change. A Change that our society needs desperately, and immediately.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Sachin Tendulkar Announces Retirement From One Day Cricket!

Just on the eve of the selection of Team India for the ODI and T20 cricket Series against Pakistan beginning 25th December today morning, the Indian cricket maestro Sachin Tendulkar has announced his retirement from One Day International cricket. One or two days back the little master was reported to have declared his availability to the BCCI for the ODI series against Pakistan. What transpired between him and the Indian cricket Board is not clear. Last night England defeated India in the second and last T20 match played in Mumbai on a last ball six by Captain Morgan thus drawing the T20 Series 1-1. The national selectors of the BCCI then announced its decision to declare a new team for the Pakistan Series.

Sachin Tendulkar, considered next only to the legendary Don Bradman, in his glorious one-day career of 23 years has amassed 18,426 runs in 463 one-dayers at an average of 44.83. The diminutive right-hander has an astonishing 49 hundreds in the format, including a double hundred -- the first in this form of the game. Tendulkar made his ODI debut against Pakistan way back in 1989 and interestingly he is quitting the scene just ahead of another series against the arch-rivals. His much awaited hundred of hundreds has been accomplished in March, 2012 in a one-day international match against Bangladesh. Tendulkar’s recent slump particularly in Tests had been a matter of great concern and speculation was rife about his possible retirement or being dropped from Team India.

One of greatest cricketers of all time, the 39 year old Sachin Tendulkar said in Mumbai this morning, "I have decided to retire from the One-Day format of the game. I feel blessed to have fulfilled the dream of being part of a World Cup wining Indian team. The preparatory process to defend the World Cup in 2015 should begin early and in right earnest." The brightest moment of his ODI career came last year when he finally became part of a World Cup winning Indian team after five previous appearances. 

The mood all around in India is an overwhelming sense of loss as the greatest Indian cricketer will not be seen in action again in the one-day format of the game. At the same time there has also been a sense of relief too as most of his fans and cricket experts were agonized watching him struggling for runs and failing again and again. Therefore, the reactions on the whole have been mixed and on expected lines.

Meanwhile, the Indian squads for both the ODI and the T20 Series against Pakistan have been announced. Yuvraj Singh is finally back in the one-day team and Virender Sehwag has also been retained. Ajinkya Rahane who played in the T20 Series against England replaces Sehwag again for the opening slot in the T20 team. Rank newcomer Shami Ahmed gets selected for the ODI team as an all rounder along with bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar getting picked for both the teams. For the ODI team there have been six changes compared to the team that played in Sri Lanka in July-August, 2012.  Zaheer Khan does not find himself in any of the teams, and most importantly MS Dhoni remains Captain for both teams.

The Squads: 

ODI squad: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Capt), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Ashok Dinda, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shami Ahmed, Amit Mishra.
T20 squad: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Capt), Gautam Gambhir, Ajinkya Rahane, Yuvraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Virat Kohli, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Ashok Dinda, Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Parvinder Awana, Piyush Chawla, Ambati Rayudu.
Pakistan begins the India Tour with the first T20 International to be played in Bangalore on 25th December. Amidst high voltage expectations and anticipation of cricket lovers security arrangements are being made on an unprecedented scale considering the opposition from different political parties within India and the delicate bilateral relations between the two neighbors.  

Friday, December 21, 2012

Death For Rapists: Protests Gather Momentum All Around!

We had expressed disappointment here yesterday as election results and cricket seemed to have diverted the attention from the burning issue of our society—the subhuman fiendish progression. The ‘human’ beings of India have  come back today attacking the evil in all fury. Protests and demonstrations broke out almost everywhere—from Jammu and Kashmir in the north to Assam in the east. Busy as ever Mumbai too expressed its anger yesterday in spite of elections and cricket.

In Delhi, the venue of the heinous crime, demonstrations were held in various places as thousands of people took to the streets.  In Raisina Hill (the campus where the President of India lives), in front of the house of the Congress President, in Safdarjung Hospital where the gangrape victim is still battling for life in the ICU, in the India Gate surroundings and so on. Protests ranged from angry outbursts and sloganeering to candle light processions. 

Tomorrow the second and last T20 International cricket match between India and England is scheduled at Wankhede stadium in Mumbai, but the city is not getting carried away by the lure of instant cricket fun. Mumbai is set to witness several demonstrations tomorrow from the symbolic fury to candle light protests. Common people and celebrities of the city have joined together demanding  fast tracked punishment to the rapists and prevention of crimes against women. There had been strong echoes on the floor of both the houses of the Maharashtra Assembly during the winter session in Nagpur that concluded today. Increasing crimes against women in recent times have threatened to dent Mumbai’s reputation as the safest city for women in India. Mumbai must remain so always at all costs. Other places of the country including Delhi in particular must earn this reputation too at all costs. It is now or never. We must keep up the momentum. Put in all your might to finish off those cowardly brutes and perverts.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Cricket T20: Team India Back Where It Belongs, Beat England In Pune Match!

Riding on a vintage knock by the player of the match Yuvraj Singh (38 off 21 balls) and useful contributions by Raina and Dhoni India registered a comfortable 5 wicket win over England in the first cricket Twenty20 match in Pune tonight. Captain Dhoni won the toss and elected to field maybe due to dew factor. England looked to be in position for a big total, but thanks to some good bowling by Dinda and Yuvraj folded up for a modest 157/6 in allotted 20 overs. Team India never had any serious problems chasing it down with more than two overs to spare. India lead the two-match Series 1-0. The Scorecard:

Take a look at the England T20 cricket team—no Test team there at all except for one or two players with captain Cook going back home after a rewarding Series win. Whereas, it is almost the same Test team for India. And MS Dhoni—he captains India or Indian clubs in all possible formats of the game. Poor him! As we all know he cannot be changed or replaced, because he continues to be the top selling brand. His oft repeated complaints of ‘too much cricket’ get invariably drowned in ‘too much money or stakes’. This is the reality of Indian cricket—the money spinning short formats and the IPL have always been founded on the cricket superstars of India as irreversible brands. Any cricket businessman or investor would hardly do business in cricket sans the icons and the super brands. With Pakistan playing a short format cricket Series in India this Christmas now is definitely not the moment for any change. 

And, behold the contrasts this great country offers unfailingly. Last two days the whole nation had been hurt, anguished and angry over the brutal gangrape in Delhi. Tonight you see thousands of crazy crowds cheering and celebrating an Indian cricket victory. The 23 year old victim in Delhi is still critical but stable. She is conscious but cannot speak yet and was communicating through writing—asking her mother if her torturing demons had been caught or not. Then you behold fireworks lighting up the Pune night sky. The Indian news channels busy last two days in full blast social campaigns for the rape victim have today told you only about the results of the elections in two Indian States. Both of the outcomes, particularly for the state of Gujarat, had been more or less entirely anticipated. Everybody expected Narendra Modi to achieve a hat-trick win as Chief Minister in Gujarat and as per rotation rules everybody expected Congress to come back victorious in Himachal Pradesh. But still the hype of hypes (poll of polls?) got no less intense. Well, this is the India we all know and we always live happily ever after.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Delhi Gangrape: Spontaneous Protests All Over India!

The ‘human’ beings of India have woken up to the brutal reality of the society they live in and erupted into angry and anguished protests and demonstrations held all over the country over the brutal gangrape of a 23 year old girl on a moving public bus in New Delhi Sunday night . As the victim continued to be critical the Rape capital of India saw huge outbursts of people—mostly the young generation including women in large numbers—in several localities of the city demanding answers from the government and local authorities in the basic issues of security to women, quick justice and prevention of crimes.  The incensed people in hundreds and thousands held demonstrations before the residence of the Delhi Chief Minister, Delhi police headquarters and in other high security VVIP areas. Police had to resort to water canons to disperse the protestors. As per latest reports protests are still going on across the country.

One contrast came up instantly. The kind of security provided to VIPs and VVIPs became very clear as their forces tried to keep them secure from the common people. There has always been a shortage of police and security personnel across India and a huge chunk of the forces available are used up for VIP security. So, how much security is actually available for the mothers, daughters, sisters and wives of the common people? One news channel raised a pertinent question as to would all the big political leaders who shook up Parliament yesterday debating death penalty to the rapists care to release a percentage of their private security forces for the common people? That would make more policemen available per thousand of common people.

All across disturbed ‘human’ beings demanded death for all rapists and eve teasers. As far as the debate on ‘capital punishment’ is concerned there is instant agreement but for one crucial difference. The punishment must be fast tracked and instant if possible, and should not be left to rot for years and years in the due process of the courts, appeals and mercy petitions. And that no single rapist or eve teaser must escape from the law and roam free.

The big question is whether of this mass upsurge against criminals will be able to keep the momentum going for a long time to force the governments bring in stringent laws, creation of a secure environment for women and prevention of increasing crimes against women. We witnessed similar a mass outrage against corruption last year under Anna Hazare, but slowly it petered out as politics grew within. Hopefully, the momentum this time would keep going because this malady of the subhuman entities invading our society runs deeper and affects or threaten to affect the families and kin of both the corrupt and non-corrupt classes. 

Keep to the basics this time. Do not entertain sex discrimination issues, do not allow gender bias to come in and do not indulge in diabolical egoism. Untie on mutual love and trust, and stay united, to defeat the demons and the fiends trying to eat up our society. The subhuman fiendish progression must be stopped at all costs. Before it is too late!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

India Against Women: The Subhuman Fiendish Progression!

 The deadly creatures prowl in hordes, always. In the street corners, in hotel or pub fronts, in the residential society entrances, in shops or restaurants outside school or college campuses, in movie theater junctions—to waylay and attack their victims. The deadlier creatures prowl in moving bikes, auto-rickshaws, cars, cabs, and even in public buses. Anytime, anywhere, everywhere. But their most favorite hours are always dark.

If we call our country India Against Women then New Delhi is fittingly the Rape capital. The marauders of humanity are much more sinister than the corrupt. The corrupt can only rob you of your money or belongings or properties, but these creatures loot your honour, loot your body and loot your soul. Like the political bigots, like the devilishly ambitious bosses, like the blood sucking parasites—all feeding constantly on the capital’s evergreen pastures, the creatures here too are more powerful, mostly protected and subhuman. They are capable of even making their feudal counterparts look aghast at what they themselves could not dream of accomplishing in their glorious medieval past.

India is also a country malevolently and malignantly male…male… and male. Rules here have always been made for the males. Women are lawfully or unlawfully at their perfect mercy within the four walls, outside and anywhere. Education has made the males richer and wiser, but their ‘male’ness remains like a historical or traditional truth. They take pride in their oppression, domination and torture of their females. The diabolically extreme ones among them become the subhuman fiends, and this class is growing ominously and growing out of control.
The fiendish creatures even took over a public bus the other in the Rape capital and began prowling the city stopping frequently for passengers or victims. One 23 year old paramedic girl student watching a movie with her boyfriend came out together of the theater just after 9 pm and waited at the bus stop. They boarded the fiendish bus unsuspectingly and what happened in the hour-long ride through the city is even beyond the imaginable levels of cruelty, depravity and brutality. The girl and the boy were thrown out after the subhuman fiends finished their job.

A national outrage was created just like in the case of Keenan and Reuben who got killed in Mumbai by a pack of hyenas for protesting eve teasing, just like in the case of the recent 19 year old Mumbai boy, the sole bread earner of his family, who was stabbed to death just outside the gate of his residential society by teenaged monsters for protesting against their lewd comments thrown at his neighborhood girl. The political class, some of whom never let go their male ego making irresponsible jabs at women, created in a din in Parliament today. The opposition leader demanded capital punishment for rapists. For the moment the leaders seemed to have forgotten their differences and politicking for perhaps righteously felt indignation. But what next?

The problem is those with some humanity still left in them are mortally scared of the subhuman fiends and prefer always to look on, because the lone brave one always gets wounded or killed. The real need of the hour is to get united—males and females together—and confront the demons. These creatures are basically cowards, because they prowl in hordes and attack the weaker victims. The ‘human’ beings must understand this and act accordingly. 

 What is needed to be delivered is instant justice. Stay united and make preparations in unison with the local authorities. And, hit the fiends where it pains the most and maim the demons permanently. The women of India must awaken, get ready and fight for their honour.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Cricket: England Win Test Series Against India 2-1!

England thoroughly deserved to win the cricket Test Series in India against India, and they won today forcing a draw in the fourth and last Test in Nagpur. Thus they have won a Test Series in India in 28 years—the last Series victory was in 1984-85 and the margin was also 2-1. The Series victory came despite losing the first Test, despite the rabid ‘Revenge Series’ slogan, despite the Indian pitches and threesome foursome Indian spinners, despite the ‘home’ conditions and crowds, despite poor umpiring decisions that mostly affected England till the fourth day of the fourth Test in Nagpur and despite Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni. 

England deserved to win because of their determined diehard professional approach, all-round performances in all disciplines of the game, a memorably prolific captain Cook leading from the front and the team playing as a cohesive unit. They won the Mumbai and Kolkata Tests convincingly thrashing a lackluster Team India as Cook went on creating history. In Nagpur, the slow and low pitch made England crawl from day one and their solid defensive tactics did in fact help them preserving their 2-1 lead. Captain Cook made another kind of history here by scoring a match total of 14 runs in 121 balls (first innings 1 in 28 and second innings 13 in 93) and falling to umpiring blunders on each occasion.

England had a nervous time on the fourth day yesterday as India, inexplicably slow in scoring runs despite having just two wickets in hand, finally made 326 for 9 declared conceding only a 4-run lead. It was delicate situation because an English collapse could give the match to India, and importantly give away a historic series win. Therefore, proceedings were extremely slow and when England lost two quick wickets at 94 for 3 the lead was not enough for thoughts about safety. But Trott (66 not out) took full control then and with solid company of Bell (24 not out) steered the team total to 161 for 3 at stumps. England reached safety for a Series win on the last day today. They only needed to play out the first session, and they exactly did that and even more building a mammoth partnership of 208 runs. Trott (143) notched his eighth hundred and his first since March, 2012.  Ensuring a Series victory England went to almost ridiculous extent batting beyond the Tea break maybe allowing Bell (116 not out) to have his hundred too.  Finally England reached 354 for 4 when a draw was agreed upon making way for a historic Series victory. Indian spinner foursome was a complete disappointment and to Dhoni's prolonged agony his pitch just refused to break up. 

For India, apart from the first Test that they won banking mainly on Cheteshwar Pujara, nothing significant happened in the entire Series except for the near double hundred partnership between Virat Kohli and skipper Dhoni on the third day that generated some hope of a result in India’s favor. Kohli finally came back to form and notched up his third century, but Dhoni 'Negative' did not still deserve one, and as if by divine design he fell to an immensely avoidable run-out for 99—an occurrence that hardly raised any eyebrows anywhere in his country. As the state of things with Team India are at the moment, even that huge partnership came to nought with another Indian mini collapse making the total reel at 297 for 8 at end of play on the third day, still trailing by 33 runs. The Scorecard:

India on this collective Test failure have nothing but to learn a few precious English lessons now: be patient, determined and defensive when required if you think you are playing Test matches; never bother too much about pitch conditions or alien conditions; allow the team play united and with mutual trust; never use your clout to the detriment of your team or nation howsoever big you are; do not ever fall prey to favoritism or nepotism and behave well on field always even if you are playing before your home crowds whose support you take for granted.   

Now, all eyes are glued to what is not going to happen to Indian Cricket! Or happen?

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Connecticut School Massacre: What Is Wrong With American Society?

Now it is Newton, Connecticut. Another tranquil and wealthy locality just 96 km north east of New York City, believed to be the safest place in United States of America. There is an educational institution named Sandy Hook Elementary School in the south west of Connecticut there. Young children aged between five to ten came there on Friday morning too as there was nothing special about that day.

As made clear later a masked gunman carrying a rifle and two handguns entered the school and started firing like a madman. At least 27 people including 18-20 little innocent children and the school principal were killed before the state and federal authorities moved in and took the wounded to hospitals. The killer identified as 20 year old Adam Lanza was earlier mistaken for his elder brother Ryan Lanza. He was believed to have killed first his mother who was a teacher in the elementary school, drove his mother’s car into the school premises, fired blindly at least 100 rounds and then killed self within the school.  

One of the worst shootings in educational institutions of America since the Virginia Tech massacre in 2007 happened again mindlessly and heartlessly. The pain felt by every parent there, in USA and elsewhere in the world has to be indescribable and heavy and numbing. President Barack Obama broke down addressing the media and ordered the flags in White House to be flown at half mast. The parent in him was anguished and he assured that effective action would be taken. Action in preventing such mayhem rather than in the aftermath must be planned and chalked out.

Along with all sensible Americans we condemn such attacks against humanity with all our heart and soul. We appeal for the US authorities to find reasons and motives so as to prevent such attacks in future. 

We had discussed the issue of hate crimes, mindless firings and shootings in educational institutions in USA earlier in these pages here when just in July and August this year two heinous firings had taken place—first in a movie premiere and the other in a tranquil religious place of worship.  Everyone on planet earth must be severely disturbed and anguished by the ominous regularity of such crimes in USA since the last few years, particularly in 2012. What is wrong with the American society? Is the demographic pattern changing or creating conflicts within? Are the recessionary trends and unemployment causing disturbances in the society? Is the economic disparity or high level corruption or snobbery responsible? Is their value system or the erosion therein responsible? Americans must introspect hard and must find the answers before it is too late. Obama on his second term must too spell out his effective action sooner than later.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Cricket: India On The Backfoot Again In Nagpur Test Against England!

That the normally greenish bouncing pitch in Nagpur behaved like an under-prepared one from the first day yesterday maybe thanks to MS Dhoni’s diktats, he lost the toss though this time. That India included four spinners and a lonely pace bowler called Ishant Sharma. That India managed to put England in a spot thanks not to the spinners galore, but to the lone pacer. That India allowed England to wriggle out of the spot easily and later on in different similar spots too, though India did manage to slow down run-scoring which rather helped England as they would win the Series with a draw. That on Dhoni’s pitch England got to a healthy total of 330 runs thanks to brave low order efforts by Prior and spinner Swann. That England’s two excellent spinners got more of the pitch than the four Indian ones. That England put India on the backfoot reducing them to 87 for 4 at stumps on the second day today with all the top four guns back in pavilion. All these cricketing facts hardly matter. What matter are the news about the game of Indian Cricket, the speculations and the possible outcome not naturally to follow after this last Test between India and England. What finally happens in Nagpur Test is not the concern; the concern is what finally does not happen to Indian Cricket. Indian cricket fans have been focused on devouring more and more news about cricket of late. Pity! (By the way, if you are still interested in this Test here is the Scorecard)

Immediately after Humiliation No.2 in Kolkata the squad for the fourth Test was announced. We have said here that the three replacements were scapegoats, and Indian cricket’s living legend Sunil Gavaskar later in the day called two of the three as scapegoats indeed. Two days later ace ex-cricketer Mohinder, fondly called Jimmy, Amarnath spilled the beans as to why big superstars always get protected by the Big (Money?) for a variety of reasons and vested interests. Amarnath, one of the then selectors in BCCI, asked for Dhoni's sack and he mustered three of the five votes, but nothing happened to Dhoni and instead Jimmy found himself sacked in the next appointment of national selectors.  The speculations got wild with experts, ex-players, lovers of the game and fans crying about a no-good or divided or demoralized Team India. Of course, some of them lambasted the fact that it was not the right time for such debates as Team India had yet to play the last Test and that they should not get demoralized. Well, the boys are always the pampered ones regardless of what they do on the field.

The old Indian story is too obvious. Here the dirty rich ones and the powerful ones get dirtier richer and more powerful as they grow old. They muster so much clout over time that their age never becomes a consideration. They can be found sitting mighty in any field of activity—be it politics, arts, sports or cricket. Therefore, the result of the Nagpur Test is hardly a concern as we have mentioned in the beginning. What might still not happen to Indian cricket in the coming days or months is the overwhelming mystery for all concerned. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Mahabaleshwar To Pratapgad—The Fort Of Valour!

The most exciting sightseeing of a Mahabaleshwar visit is the trip to the mountain fort Pratapgad—about 22 km from Mahabaleshwar through a narrow hilly road that cascades up and down the Sahyadri Mountain range in Western Ghats making you gasp all the way. The sharp turns to the extent of almost 180 degrees and the green valleys down thousands of feet now one side of your car and the next moment the other side. 

Pratap Gad—the Fort (Gad) of Valour (Pratap)—is strategically placed and is known for the legendary Battle of Pratapgad in 1659 fought and won by Maratha ruler Shivaji Maharaj against Afzal Khan, the commander of the mighty Sultanate of Bijapur. Through a web of deceit from both sides finally Shivaji killed Afzal Khan here and the Afzal Khan Tomb was also built in the Fort environs. You can climb up to the top through two layers of Fort constructions and get amazed by the military strategy adopted and the sheer natural beauty all around. 

Tea Break at a Restaurant Atop!

On the Mahabaleshwar-Pratapgad road stretch too you cannot help getting down from your car at several points and get in tune with bountiful Mother Nature. 

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