February 28, 2006

Budget 2006-07

Our FM presented the Budget for the fiscal year 2006-07.

In this effort I have tried to expatiate on certain factors in the Budget that I found interesting and understandable(from my perspective). I am not sure how valid/invalid my opinions are , but this is an honest attempt at understanding / crticizing / appreciating the various nuances and subleties associated with this activity.

As I am writing this, SENSEX is at 10370.24 with a raise of 88.15 pts over the previous day close.

With the SENSEX becoming TENSEX ,the economic boom ( in China & India), the continuous uproar by the commies towards the reforms and scams all around the country, FM had a very delicate task of presenting the Budget for this fiscal(as always -- cliched).Any drastic step suggested would see negative reactions from various industry segments [ associated with TENSEX becoming ONESEX - poor PJ!!].

Health :
The Govt has already done significant improvements w.r.t Polio eradication and its pledge to eradicate it by Dec'07 is commendable. The allocation for NHM(National Health Mission) has also been increased. I was expecting some sort of a Health Insurance scheme to be announced for workers in 'special' sectors and small scale industries.Along with Polio eradication, I was expeting some policy/allocation for diseases like chickenpox,smallpox, and the new Avian-flu.Setting up of a Cental Monitoring Committee to address any pandemic was also expected. Animal husbandary should also have had a mention.

I have a strong inclination towards the betterment of education in this great country of ours and was expecting something substantial w.r.t IITs/IIMs/ITIs and some allocations for children from BPL(Below Poverty Line) families.

Eventhough, FM has increased the allocation for Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and Mid-Day Meal Scheme , I am not sure how much of this will be reflected at the grass-roots level; as the Govt is already sitting on a huge pile of unspent cash w.r.t Education.

The constuction of Five lakh additional class rooms and appointment of 150,000 additional teachers is worthy of praise - but I really doubt the quality w.r.t the same.Along the same lines, the mentioning of setting up of 1000 schools for SCs, STs, OBCs and minorities sends a clear signal to Congresse's commitment towards the 'so-called' minority segment.

Industry and Market:
The FM's commitment towards Power sector was visible with the announcement of Five mega power projects at the cost of Rs 4000 crore. Similary, setting up of a deep draft port in West Bengal , reconstitution of NHAI and raising of FII investment limit in stock markets have sent positive signals.I am not able to understand what the FM is referring to when he announced
"New towns to be established on specific themes" -- is this in anyway related to tourism or special status to some states.

"Rs 10 crore (Rs 100 million) allocated for preparatory work for celebrating the 150th anniversary of the First War of Independence of 1857 in a befitting manner." - Let us see how we celebrate it!!

"Old age pension to be increased to Rs 200 per month for above 75 years of age." -- Cant understand the funda behind this.

"A girl child will get Rs 3,000 deposited in a bank account after she enrolls for eighth class examination and the amount would be given when she becomes a major." -- does 3000INR really matter in this world. I mean, what can you get in 3k bucks??

Doubling the corpus for Maulana Azad Educational Foundation and increasing the allocation of national Urdu education programme would raise comments from Hindu organizations. At the same time, this reflects the Govt's initiative to cache in on the Muslim-Vote-Bank.

To appease the Hindus , FM has announced the declaration of Vedic chanting and Ram Lila under UNESCO heritage and has granted 5Crore INR for the same. This again is going to make the Communists and some factors in the UPA to turn hysterical.

Being Red

The concept/color of Red is mostly associated with passion and anger; something that symbolizes a revolution -- a burning desire to bring a change to an existing system. This desire is to be brought about at any cost.

In India , Red is mostly associated with Communists...think of the color red and you will find the faces of Sitaram Yetchuri...Namboodripad....Somnath chatterjee etc flashing across you; the red flags flying in the auto/bus stands, labour unions, marches etc. Whereever there is a march/procession happening, you will either find Arundhati Roy or the Red Communist flag. Arent we saturated with the un-inhibted protests that keep happening against any Govt's initiative/policy? Be it on the Iran's vote w.r.t IAEA or any casein the remotest part of the country.

What does the average Indian think about Communism? How does being Marxist-Lenitist affect him? What do protests mean? Why do communists need to create ballyhoos for any govt Policy involving a reform? more Qs..and still more Qs...

I happened to visit Shiv's post on the Indian Commies. Intriguing post that talks and makes you think.

February 26, 2006


Photo Credits : Lockheed Martin

Most of you might be wondering what those guys are doing in the wild. On seeing the pic for the first time, i thought this must be the next generation of US/Israel's Binoculars or Communication gadgets used in warfare. But later on after visiting LM's site and reading about the Javelin system, I came to know that Javelin is "a single man-portable fire-and-forget medium-range antitank weapon system designed to defeat all known and projected threat armor from Lockheed Martin" .

Rocket Launchers have always fascinated me from time immemorial. I have always loved the sight of the rockets gushing out of the launchers placed on the shoulders of heroes(Arnold/Stallone) shown in Hollywood movies. It is the sheer fire-power that these things have. I feel rocket launchers are far better when compared to grenades ,pistols or rifles as the 'destructive' power of the former is far greater than the latter.

Also, with the advancement in technology and the concept of 'fire-and-forget' creeping into warfare system, it becomes mandatory that the soldiers have reliable 'things' in their repository which they can resort to.

I happened to see the indegenously built Pinaka Multiple Rocket Launcher System (MRLS) in this year's(2006) Republic day Parade. I dont why, but for some reason this impressed me a lot.
I am not sure how the Pinaka MRLS can stand against Javelin or any other equivalent system designed by the Israelis, but presume Pinaka comes under a different genre of its own in the Missile defense System.

I point worthy of mention over here is the fact that the Pinaka System was commpletely built in India :-). Though this(Pinaka) has taken almost a decade to design and crores spent on R&D and be sent for production, but the still we are proud of it.

February 25, 2006

summa...samm...sammm....samm...sammaram pannuven

What more can I say....This fellow simply rocks.My rendezvous with Simbu -- in the form of 'Saravana'. I had seen his previous movie 'Manmadhan' and was quite impressed by this young lad.His 'over'-acting provides wholesome entertainment and can pep you up from an otherwise sober mood.His dialogue-delivery and the way he carries himself on screen has no equivalent.He continues to abide by his father's (TR's) footsteps and continues to refer to his famous dialogues and style.

Jyotika's role in the movie is next to zero , but still she manages to captivate the lad and has a decent role in the movie.I did not find the songs sequences to be that attractive and enthralling.The way he iterates "summa...samm...sammm....samm...sammaram pannuven" (around 4-5 times) is pretty stylish and is also different(as it carries Simbu's distinctive copyright).

This movie has all the ingredients of a good 'masala'-movie ; and I am sure that you will not leave the hall with a heavy heart(and brain) after watching it.

Though Rajni and Kamal still rule, but Simbu has a carved his own niche in Tollywood and I am sure he will continue to provide some 'simbacular' movies ;-) The way he has graduated from being a child star(in his dad's otherwise flop movies) to a budding super-star is worth a praise.

PS : am i becoming Simbu's fan.....nah!!

February 22, 2006

IIM Lucknow GD/PI Experience

Today, I had my GD/PI for Admissions to the PGP in Managaement at IIM Lucknow. The GD/PI session was scheduled for 10:00 am at IIM Bangalore campus.Had reached the venue by around 8:30 am and waiting for the 'phenomenon' to start. Things were at a dismal low the previous night as I was not so much passionate about the actual ROI w.r.t this programme.But still, managed to get up early in the morning and 'power-groomed' myself.

GD Topic: "I have hardly met a mathematician who was good at reasoning." We were asked to write a 150 word essay on the topic before the Gd started - the time allotted for this was 10 mins. Then the GD lasted approx 15mins.

The GD went on fine and there was no 'fish-market' kind of a scenario.The group consisted of 10 enthusiastic memebers out of which 2 did not bother to speak much. Hoever, others were equally assertive and there were some great points on the table.Someone spoke about the actual 'Reasoning' consisting of Induction and Deduction, there were also thoughts on Adam Smith's and Nash's theories and how relevant they were to real world applications and whether these along with other mathematicians really lack the 'reasoning power'.I spoke for around 5-6 times.

Then it was the turn for the PI and MYSELF (THEE) ;-) was the first to enter . PI was equally great and had fun with a great panel. Things lasted for almost 15-20 mins and was damn satisfied with my performance at EOD.

The Actual Conversation/Interview:
P1, P2 and Me.

P1 : Marksheets plz.
Me : yes Sir...(hand over my 3 files: one containing Marksheets , 1 containing Ceritifcates extra currics and the other containing a bplan)
P2 : Bplan..wats that abt....tell me more abt it..[went on for 8 mins]
Me : Expalined!
P1: Give me 3 reasons y we should select you
Me : gave 3 reasons -Crapped royally ;-) [went on for 2mins]
[Panel smiles]
P1: What is a turing Machine?[went on for 2 mins]
Me :[ I speak abt Turing Test and Turing Medal]
P1: I am asing abt turing Machine and not turing Test...u r getting confused
Me: [accept it and then explain Turing Model]
[Some more Qs w.r.t Turing's M/c etc etc..]
P1 and P2 : [ some Qs on my work-ex related stuff] [went on for 6mins]
P2 :[ some Qs w.r.t Resource Mgmt tech - my Sixth sem paper.Wants a real world ex of Simplex prog]
Me: [gives the ex and explains][went on for 2mins]
[P1 pokes p2 and tells him that timesup and wants to stop Qing...but P2 continues...for arnd 2 mins..and I keep answering]
P1 and P2 : thanks..you may leave now
Me : Thanks.

Hi IIML , I should be there this June If I dont convert IIMB ;-)

February 15, 2006

MS and Identity Management

Happen to see this link which speaks of MS's entry into Identity management across sites.MS plans to implement this using a so called 'wallet' named 'InfoCard'; however, it sounds like a gimmick to me, as i feel MS will be exposing the entire login info to potential hackers. I envisage MS to implement the wallet in a so called 'secure region' which will be simply unaccessible.I guess this will be similar to Password Manager in Firefox.

Oracle already has a technology called 'SSO-Single Sign On' wherein a user needs to just have a single UID/pwd for logging in across Oracle Applications/Products.