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Friday, February 15, 2013

Bofors, Agusta Westland ..... VIP security; FB is down

Remember Bofors still…

Nation is now hounded by helicopter also called ‘chopper’… a marvel which can take off and land vertically, hover, fly forward, laterally and backwards…… now has come crushing to the terra earth.  Those with memory will recall Bofors scandal of 1980s which brought down Rajiv Gandhi and implicated several others ~ after so many rounds of stories of kickbacks from Bofors AB for winning a bid to supply India's 155 mm field howitzer, things died down. Those days, the  scale of the corruption was far worse than any that India had seen before and directly led to the defeat of Gandhi's ruling Indian National Congress party in the November 1989 general elections.  VP Singh came to power speaking of cleansing but did precious little thereafter.  

There is some malady with the Indian system of treating the VVIPs ~ whether it comes to buying choppers for them or the way they are treated in the democracy. It militates against the idea of equality, for the simple reason that it makes some citizens inferior to others. When red beacons and police protection become status differentiators and they come at the cost of the dignity of the ordinary citizen, there’s reason enough to challenge the idea and rip it apart.  Yes, in any society, some are more equal than others but in a land where policemen are hopelessly short, unable to do their primary duty of law and order and pursuing criminals, Firstpost reports that more than 47,000 cops protect around 14,800 VIPs. While there are roughly three policemen protecting one VIP, more than 700 of ordinary citizens have to do with just one. Those not protecting the biggies have to take care of political rallies, security at public events and public places, oversee CM and other Ministers passing by, be alert in the areas where political leaders attend………. And naturally they have less time for protecting law and order and pursuing crime.  ~ worst part of it is the security is at the cost of ordinary tax payers.  Worser still, they are not protecting only the State heads and Ministers but in many places relatives, relatives of opposition leaders and more…… their houses, the places the visit and the like…  sadly, sometimes Policemen guard people with criminal background and sometimes those who on record are being chased by Police. 

Some part is burning with the allegations of illegal payoffs in the deal to purchase VVIP helicopters from Agusta Westland have thus far swirled around former Air Chief SP Tyagi. Tyagi has been vehemently protesting his innocence, dismissing the allegation made in court documents presented by Italian prosecutors.  In every military deal, there reportedly is middlemen making huge money and sometimes it is not any politician alone; this time again, those middlemen reportedly owe allegiance to the ruling party.   Honestly, how many of us remember  Ottavio Quattrocchi, who was named in Bofors and who walked away with the help of Indian politicians and CBI too closing the case against him. Bofors was the smoking gun, had heads rolling eventually had a natural death, will  the copter deal, land somebody remains to be seen. 

Away from all this, the netizens are more worried and panicky about being not able to access ‘Facebook’ ~ oh, what a difficult life ! ~ some reports put it that the site is under maintenance and there is no cause of concern ~ mobile users were appalled by the fact that the Android application  nor the iPad was updating.

Though Bofors to Indians is ‘scam’ ~ the name Bofors has been associated with the iron industry for more than 350 years. Located in Karlskoga, Sweden, the company originates from the hammering trip hammer mill "Boofors" founded 1646.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
15th Feb 2013.

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