Undeserved praise for Pitroda

Undeserved praise for Pitroda
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First Published: Thu, Dec 10 2009. 09 57 PM IST
Updated: Thu, Dec 10 2009. 09 57 PM IST
It surprised me to read Shamnad Basheer’s gushing ode to Sam Pitroda (“India’s innovation czar”, Mint, 7 December). Pitroda happened to be in the right place at the right time. His great innovation of the last century remains that of the last century. The mobile phone revolution has pretty much made that whole system obsolete now. Most recently, he was, what—the “knowledge commissioner”? From what I gathered, not much came out of that whole enterprise. Besides, Pitroda lives in Oakbrook, Illinois, US. Does nobody at home fit the bill?
— Farah Rahman
This refers to Mukul Sanwal’s “New strategy at Copenhagen” (3 December, Mint). Policymakers and everyone in this climate mela at Copenhagen fail to see the wood for the trees. The planet is giving very simple, clear signs that change is already upon us—non-negotiable, irreversible change. But we humans are still putting our heads in the sand of numbers and jargon and making things so very complicated for ourselves. When will all our so-called leaders themselves realize that earth is not negotiating with us?
It might be good to also see that we are not “saving the planet”, in fact, it is the planet that is already in the process of saving itself from us. We, the human race, have to make a paradigm shift if we want to survive. The strategies being negotiated at Copenhagen are actually a sad commentary on what we as a race have been reduced to.
— Jenny Pinto
The Congress government appears to be highly confused and self-contradictory at times. The Copenhagen stance is just one of the many indicators. Even the Prime Minister has tweaked long-held Indian strategic thought and statements on terrorism by linking to talks with our neighbours, as he did with Pakistan. The recent Barack Obama visit to Asia shows that the new US administration clubs India with Pakistan; the later PR exercise of hosting a state dinner for the PM has only added insult to injury.
Unless India is greedy enough to take care of its priorities and strategic interests, we will have to find pleasure in the self-delusion that we are an important power—rather than really seeing the change in the thinking of world powers towards our country.
— Yugal Joshi
Your Quick Edit “Answers, no questions” (1 December, Mint) shows the shocking indifference of some of our members of Parliament (MPs) to their basic functions.
It will be in public interest if the media publishes the full list of all MPs indicating their constituencies and the parties to which they belong so that the people realize the way those whom they have elected function. There is a need for “naming and shaming” the errant MPs. It would be even more useful if the text of those “orphaned questions” is also published. This is necessary because the media has revealed in the past that MPs are sometimes pressured to stay away so that “inconvenient questions” raised are still-born.
— S. Subramanyan
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First Published: Thu, Dec 10 2009. 09 57 PM IST