Remembering martyr-trio Rajguru, Sukhdev, and Bhagat Singh
There are several birthdays of prominent personalities like April 14, October 2, and November 14 which are known to each student right from school-age. However, earlier governments never tried to put in hearts of school-going children important martyrdom day of March 23 when three great martyrs of independence of the country namely Rajguru, Sukhdev, and Bhagat Singh were hanged to death by cruel British rulers way back in the year 1931 for their heroic deed of fighting Britishers. The base of freedom of country was laid down by these three martyrs followed by the same line adopted by Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose which in fact made the British rulers free India even though it was publicised that India got independence by virtue of non-violence movement.
The government of India should make birthdays or martyrdom days of real freedom-fighters by portraying their photos on currency-notes coins of ordinary circulation. Even currency-notes can feature a short profile of freedom-fighter along with photos for different martyrs on the different denomination of notes.
Look for suitable alternative
The greatest manmade disaster towards green environment comes from the use of plastic, especially the thin film variety. A partial ban on plastic bags that several local bodies in the country implemented at various stages has fallen flat so far primarily due to faulty implementation. Secondly, the non-availability of feasible alternatives has been dissuading administrators from opting for a complete ban. The cloth is the next choice, though the non-woven bags that pass off as cloth bags in most shops these days are equally or even more dangerous than the plastic bags. Plastic bags play a negative role in chocking the drainage system. Make sure you do not burn polythene bags as they cause a lot of pollution.
Make it easy
The Election Commission of India (ECI) this year is striving hard to make polling accessible to physically challenged voters. Amongst other initiatives, the ECI has ensured identification of such voters who need access to the polling booth and provide them with the facility of free pick up and drop facility. Apart from this, the ECI is also making adequate arrangements to provide wheelchairs at the polling booths and has also requested other volunteers to chip in with additional wheelchairs, if the numbers requested fall short.
Further ECI can look into arranging for ‘mobile polling booth’ for the exclusive use of specially challenged voters. As in the past, under the ambit of electoral reforms, it is known that ‘Pink Booths’ were successfully introduced to mobilize huge voter turnout. ECI can further take a plunge and introduce such mobile polling booths across all the major locations especially in rural areas, where accessibility to polling booths still remains elusive for many such voters. Thus without providing ease of access to polling booths through a mobile polling booth facility, ECI perhaps may lose out to achieve a complete and inclusive voter turnout during polls.
The ECI should now waste not much time to introduce ‘Mobile Polling Booths’ for the benefit of physically challenged voters. As the process of identifying special access voters is underway, introducing ‘Mobile Polling Booths’ for physically challenged voters will go in a long way to being effective electoral reforms.
Also in an age of technological revolution, it is ironical to note that the system of e-voting, mobile voting or online polling facility exclusively for physically challenged voters still remains a distant dream. It is also high time now for the ECI to at least provide an option of ‘online polling’ facility exclusively for the benefit of physically challenged voters and thus strive to make voting an inclusive democratic exercise.
Poll promise or a gimmick?
Save India from being economically bankrupt for vote-bank politics: Make people work hard rather than making them beggars dependent on freebies
As the Congress President has come with a big pre-poll announcement to give Rs 72,000 per annum to 5 crore families covering about 25 crores population in case his party comes in power. The poll promise is a gimmick in itself because the Congress President has said that the scheme is planned to be introduced in a phased manner without any elaboration of the term phased-manner.
India would have been a developed nation if such allegedly pro-poor gimmick schemes would not have been allowed distributing free items or providing money without or nominal work just on paper like MGNREGA. Useless subsidies have tended to eaten up Indian economy like termites where most such subsidies in name of poor are misused by affording ones like on postal-items including post-cards.
Commoners including poor would have been benefitted much if heavy money spent on such schemes would have been better utilized on development projects and reduction in taxes. However, the ever-widening gap between rich and poor must be curtailed and visibly seen by fixing maximum salary and post-retirement benefits from public-exchequer including for President and Supreme Court judges to that of a highest paid bureaucrat in the country. Others paid from funds generated from public-money like from Board for Control of Cricket in India BCCI should also have likewise upper salary-package equivalent to Union Cabinet Secretary rather than up to rupees 7 crores per annum apart from hefty other benefits.
Subhash Chandra Agrawal
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)