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Rules for pedestrians, too

Rules for pedestrians, too
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First Published: Thu, Mar 29 2007. 11 56 PM IST
Updated: Thu, Mar 29 2007. 11 56 PM IST
The Delhi high court wants the police to impose strict rules for traffic in Delhi, together with higher fines for violations. But most of road accidents are due to indisciplined pedestrians and cyclists. A sharp contrast can be observed in the behaviour of pedestrians in Delhi and Mumbai. In Mumbai, no person crosses even a zebra-crossing when the lights are red, while in Delhi people cross at any point and unnecessarily blame motorists in case of an accident. While in Mumbai, passengers wait in a queue at bus stops, no disciplined person in Delhi at a bus stop can ever catch a bus, with passengers waiting in the middle of roads. Accidents and traffic jams can never end till strict rules are enforced for pedestrians and cyclists as well.
—Subhash C. Agrawal
This is in response to the Café Economics column on outsourcing, Mint, 14 March, where the writer argues that free immigration to the US will pull down wages there and reduce the competitiveness of India’s outsourcing companies.
But can we assume that a migrant worker will be satisfied with the same wages as an offshore worker?
After all, only part of the reason why the wages are lower in India is because of supply—a lot has to do with purchasing power. So unless migration is of such larger proportions that it significantly reduces the overall cost of living in the US (which is unlikely), wages demanded in the US will continue to be higher than those in Pune.
On the contrary, large- scale migration can actually increase costs in the US (of real estate/health care). So, the impact of migration can be very different. The lower cost (and standard) of living in India is subsidizing the US standard of living. The arbitrage between $40,000 per capita and $1,000 per capita will gradually reduce with outsourcing, but whether it stabilizes closer to the US end or the Indian end will really depend on how the US uses the surplus generated by outsourcing
—Rajashekar Iyer
Words like Rs.run’ and Rs.marathon’ catch my notice at once. I read articles about marathons and marathon runners with passion and emotion. So I was happy to read the article on running in the issue dated 27 March.
I thought of running marathon at the ripe age of 40, to overcome the depression of not getting into the Everest Expedition. Yes, it was a decision made on a negative note but was a huge positive step, I think.
I had read somewhere that marathoning is the best way to overcome the depression of losing a job, coping with divorce, separation, any calamity in life. Nothing of that sort had happened to me. But I was depressed.
I was a permanent (and prominent) fixture in Nehru Park by 5:30am, going round and round like a mad horse. People started turning their heads and noticing me on Chanakyapuri roads, in the Delhi Cantonment, on Gurgaon Road—at dawn and at dusk.
I ran on Goan beaches, cross country into interior villages, at Himalayan heights in Manali, Uttarkashi, Leh. Every day was a new experience and a new beginning.
Ah! Those were the days. I still continue with my marathon diet (without actually training for a marathon). Old habits die hard!
I still keep six to seven pairs of running shoes for different runs like Sunday road run, speed workout, gym workout and park run. The excitement of shopping for running shoes and gear is in no way comparable to any other shopping. And I still sleep with “Distance Runner” as my pillow.
I even opted out of my earlier bank job with a VRS. But I think somewhere in between I lost track, and ended up in yet another demanding job. I have been caught in the corporate whirlpool and am struggling to come out of it.
—Mala Honnatti
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First Published: Thu, Mar 29 2007. 11 56 PM IST
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