Looking Beyond


Gas worth upwards of Rs 11,000 crore explored by RIL from ONGC's side of KG field - Report :

'US-based consultant D&M has submitted its final report on the gas dispute between ONGC and Reliance Industries, establishing that natural gas worth over Rs 11,000 crore has migrated from idling KG fields of the state-owned firm to the adjoining KG-D6 block. ONGC had in 2013 claimed that RIL had deliberately drilled wells close to the common boundary of the blocks and that some gas it pumped out was from its adjoining block.'   Read More


Looking Beyond - Land Acquisition Ordinance - Another view:

'But post the Ordinance stamped by the BJP govt. lot of pro-poor, pro-farmer and pro-owner provisions will be absent. These changes are bound to affect over 50% of Indian household who derived its livelihood from farm lands and about 10.9 crore direct stake holders, the rural households in India.' View letter


Looking Beyond - "Amendments to the Land Acquisition Law – The Real Picture" - Article by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley:

'This 2013 Act (of previous government) had over 50 drafting errors. The provision with regard to the rectification of errors will be used to cure most of them. Some are being cured through this ordinance which alters the earlier mandate of the 2013 law that unused land has to be returned five years after the acquisition. The earlier provision was clearly defective. Creation of smart cities, townships, industrial corridors, business centers, defence projects, cantonments, ports, nuclear installations, building of highways, irrigation projects, dams have a long gestations period. They cannot be completed in five years. If the earlier provision is to be effected, we would be a nation of incomplete projects on account of defective legislative drafting.' Read More

An article contradicting the views of the Finance Minister will be published tomorrow


Looking Beyond - Why the Chhattisgarh sterilisation tragedy may happen again:

'In January this year, Dr R K Gupta was honoured by the Government of Chhattisgarh for performing 50,000 laparoscopic tubectomies. 10 months later, he was arrested under charges of causing death by negligence in the same procedure he was once lauded for. On 10 November, Gupta defied government medical protocol and conducted 83 laparoscopic tubectomies in just five hours in a mass sterilisation camp organised by the Government of Chhattisgarh. This fateful stint left 13 women dead and many others battling for their lives. Two weeks since the tragedy, during which the people saw the usual blame game playing out between the Government of Chattisgarh, the practitioner and the pharmaceutical company supplying the medicines, a drug sample report has confirmed that the medicines given to the victims did indeed contain poisonous substances, zinc phosphide or rat poison being one among them. Clearly, there is a much larger issue concerning the health industry in India, that has been brought to the fore one more time and which remains largely unaddressed despite various concerns raised earlier. Read More


Looking Beyond - Urban floods - lessons from Jammu & Kashmir:

'Dal lake, one of the world's largest natural lakes, covered an area of 75 sq km in 1200 AD. The lake area almost reduced to one-third in the eighties and has further reduced to one-sixth of its original size in the recent past. The lake has also lost almost 12 m of depth. "Massive encroachments and erection of many structures and hotels have led to the reduction in the size of the lake," says Manu Bhatnagar, principal advisor in the natural heritage division of the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH), Delhi Chapter. INTACH's Jammu and Kashmir chapter had observed that construction in low-lying areas of Srinagar, especially along the banks of the Jhelum, had blocked discharge channels of the river almost five years ago.' Read More


Looking Beyond - The solution to India’s onion price inflation is an obvious one. Hint: it’s not the hoarders:

'Each state has its own version of the model Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee Act (APMC Act). This determines the market structure—who can buy and sell to whom, where, when and the charges and taxes to be paid at each stage—which has created the onion supply chain as we know it. About 97% of the country’s onion harvest is sold in 50 major onion market yards, regulated under the APMC Act. And it’s because of this law that India’s onion farmer gets a poor price for his produce even as consumers pay a high price.' Read More


Looking Beyond - First, give the patient right to know:

'In many of our five-star corporate hospitals, where the main motive seems to be profit for the shareholders, there is an institutionalised system of so-called “facilitation charges” or fees for “diagnostic help” given to the physicians who refer patients regularly and for expensive procedures like organ transplants, which may reach Rs1-2 lakh. The senior doctors, we are told, whose pay is in astronomical figures, are visited by neophyte financial experts at the end of every month with sheaves of financial data and asked to justify whether they deserve the salaries [they] are being paid, especially when the revenue they have generated for the hospital from investigations and operations falls short of certain set goals.'  Read More


Lok Sabha Elections 2014 - Consolidated Analysis of Criminal Background, Financial, Education, Gender and other details of Candidates - Phase 1 to 5:

To get information on candidates/MP/MLA from your constituency, send SMS MYNETA (Example: MYNETA PINCODE) or MYNETA (Example: MYNETA KURUKSHETRA) On 9246556070 (normal SMS charges applicable) or 56070 (charges Rs. 2-3) Sample response: Candidates for KURUKSHETRA, (1) Naveen Jindal INC: Criminal Cases-2, Asset Rs 308.31 Crore, Liability: Rs 4.91 Crore, Edu: Post Graduate. (2) Rajkumar Saini BJP: Criminal Cases-2, Asset Rs 13.28 Crore, Liability: Rs 2.32 Crore, Edu: Graduate.  Read More


Looking Beyond - The gas price conundrum:

'Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) had claimed it would produce 80 million metric standard cubic meter per day (mmscmd) of gas and even went ahead and built a cross-country pipeline from the KG D-6 well to transport this quantity. Gas output from KG D-6 never reached anywhere near 80 mmscmd in all the four years since the well commenced production. Currently, production is only around 13 mmscmd. The government, instead of enforcing the contract and ensuring that the operator delivers the promised volumes, not to mention penalising the operator for causing extensive losses to stranded gas consumers, has chosen to double KG D-6 gas prices hoping to cajole RIL to ramp up gas production from KG D-6 to its promised levels. The decision, which according to the AAP will deliver a further Rs.53,000 crore into RIL’s coffers, is not just ill-advised, but unconscionable.'  Read More



'As said, female foeticide is an ever-growing menace in Indian societies, and there is ample evidence. Censuses and surveys bring about seriously threatening statistics and figures. According to the latest Census 2011, the overall sex ratio in India is 940 females per 1000 males. This may seem insignificant – why’s 60 less girls such a big issue? However, consider the massive population of India of over 1.22 billion, and do your math right and you’ll see the gravity of the situation. A deficit of 60 females per 1000 males, translates into a deficit of about 37 million (3.7 crore) females in India – and that is a huge figure.'  Read More


Looking Beyond - Criminal records of the current Lok Sabha members:

'The rules laid out in the Representation of the People Act of 1951 state that persons convicted of a criminal offence for 2 years or more shall lose their seat, and be disqualified from contesting elections till 6 years after release. As one might expect, this has led to a very low conviction rate for members of Parliament. In several instances, charges related to serious crimes such as assault, murder, rioting, kidnapping, etc, have been pending in the courts.'  Read More



'India has the world’s largest population that defecates in the open. According to data released by the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) in December 2013, 59.4 per cent of rural India defecates in the open. Jharkhand and Odisha are the worst performers with 90.5 per cent and 81.3 per cent of their population without toilets respectively. The Centre gives India just about eight years to free its villages of open defecation. This seems unlikely. But the states of Sikkim, Haryana and Jharkhand... have shown the way. Their models stress on behavioural change and disapprove of government subsidy to install toilets.'  Read More


The lokpal and lokayukthas bill-2011:

'Rajya Sabha passed the Lokpal and Lokayukthas Bill, 2011 on 17.12.2013 and the bill has been passed by the Lok Sabha today.'  Read More



'Of the total 1,01,041 rape cases pending trial in the courts, trials were completed in 14,717 (14.6%) cases. Of these, convictions happened in 3,563 cases, 292 were compounded or withdrawn, and the accused were acquitted or discharged in 11,154 cases. The conviction rate for rape, therefore, was as low as 24.2% in 2012, down from 26.4% in 2011 and 26.6% in 2010.'  Read More    View NCRB Report-2012



In the future, India’s system of family-based support will not be able to withstand the increased numbers of older Indians, “especially given increased female labor force participation, smaller numbers of more mobile children, widening generation gaps, and increasing burdens of costly-to-treat diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and stroke.”  Read More


Looking Beyond - Indian Billionaires get a pass:

'In their coverage of the report, India's mainstream news media treated Mr.Singh and Mr.Birla very differently. Once again Indian journalism appeared bold while attacking the prime minister and subdued when it had to invetigate a billionaire.'  Read More



India today successfully launched its first mission to Mars in an attempt to become the fourth nation and the first Asian country to reach the fourth planet from the sun. It's the first step in a complex 10-month mission designed to reach Mars on the lowest-budget ever for such an attempt. It's also a point of national pride for a country that has been dismayed by a faltering "economic miracle" in recent months, but has also raised questions since India continues to have large numbers of poor.  Read More



The Barefoot College in rural Rajasthan helps rural communities become self-sufficient. Development projects the world over run into one crucial point - For a project to live on, it needs to be organic, owned and sustained by those it serves. In 1972, Sanjit “Bunker” Roy founded the Barefoot College, in the village of Tilonia in Rajasthan, with just this mission - to provide basic services and solutions in rural communities with the objective of making them self-sufficient. These “barefoot solutions” can be broadly categorized into solar energy, water, education, health care, rural handicrafts, people’s action, communication, women’s empowerment and wasteland development. The Barefoot College education program, for instance, teaches literacy and also skills, encouraging learning-by-doing. Bunker’s organization has also successfully trained grandmothers from Africa and the Himalayan region to be solar engineers so they can bring electricity to their remote villages. In his talk over the success of the project, Roy says, "Barefoot College is a place of learning and unlearning - where the teacher is the learner and the learner is the teacher." On the student governance at Barefoot college, he says “The prime minister is 12 years old. She looks after 20 goats in the morning, but she’s prime minister in the evening.” “We went to Ladakh … and we asked this woman, ‘What was the benefit you had from solar electricity?’ And she thought for a minute and said, ‘It’s the first time I can see my husband’s face in winter.’” Talking about the initial reception to his mission and the tough time he had in making the impossible 'possible', Roy concludes with a saying of Gandhiji: “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”



Looking beyond - Declining value of Rupee: who are the culprits:

'Today, the Indian Rupee is facing a fall in its value that is unprecedented and seemingly unending. Though the process of decline started a couple of years ago, the phase has been very rigorous in the recent times. It was trading around Rs.45 per dollar in August, 2011. It fell to Rs.55 in August, 2012. On the day this is written, it has nosedived to as low as Rs.64 against the dollar.'  Read More



This new section ‘Looking Beyond’ intends to draw attention towards things happening around us, particularly the socio-economic issues in the country, outside the small circle comprising our career and career related problems. During the past five years, AIBSNLOA has been successful in creating awareness on many important career and organization related matters, analyzing the matters to the core and reporting the pros and cons with honesty and objectivity. This has resulted in creating compulsions on others to seriously pursue the matter till then neglected by them either by chance or by design. Our responsibility and concern cannot end there. More than being a BSNL Executive, we are human beings, citizens of the country and we have social responsibilities to fulfill too. This section will periodically bring authentic reports of such socio-economic issues, taking care to avoid any political overtones. To start with we are reproducing a report on ‘Child Labour in India’ from ‘CHILDREN IN INDIA 2012 – A statistical appraisal’ published by Social Statistics Division of Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, Government of India. Even today, after six decades of independence and despite various initiatives both on the legal as well as policy and programme levels, the condition of children remains a cause of concern in the country: ‘Children, under age 14 are often forced to work for as many as 18 hours a day. They are subject to malnutrition, impaired vision, deformities from sitting long hours in cramped over crowded work places, they become easy preys to deadly diseases like serious respiratory diseases, T.B., and Cancer. They are often forced to lead solitary lives away from their families, deprived of meaningful education and training opportunities that could prepare them for a better future. Child labour not only leads to a perpetual cycles of poverty for a family, it depresses the Economy also. The immense benefits of abolition of child labour cannot be measured in economic terms alone, its enormous long term beneficial impact on the Society as a whole far out-weighs the nominal economic hardship that some families would suffer only for a short span of time.’  Read More