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Arvind Kejriwal's office open for country’s downtrodden and unheard
Report dated 15/10/2012 @ 3:38 PM
Arvind Kejriwal's office in Ghaziabad continues to host farmers, thelawalas, and petitioners from India's so-called unheard masses, who choose to see him to explain not just the lack of government/bureaucratic assistance, but the fact that their requests and explanations all fall on deaf ears.
Kejriwal's lieutenants explain that his theory is quite simple in effect. They tell a petitioner that if a problem affects just him alone, they are unable to help, but if it affects many people then they can help. But not quite as expected, because petitioners are told to go back to where they came from, organise and demonstrate against the government, show their solidarity and when they do, only then Kejriwal will actually help. A mantra that could be transmitted as "helping those who help themselves".
This mantra is repeated in the vision statement of the political party that Kejriwal will launch later in November.
The suggestion is not a radical one, in civilised societies authorities talk to and convince a majority of the local population of their plans before they begin changes. It is one of the precepts of democracy, that involves the community before action that affects them is taken.
Funding is also expected to come from within the community, which means the party itself spends nothing on fighting an election which in turns means that if the party does not need to raise funds, then neither does it need to be corrupt.
Experts believe in order to accomplish this somewhat Utopian ideal in a country like India, the emerging party will need a dedicated cadre and a lot of time.
Thus far Congress says they are dismissive of Arvind and his campaign, however it is also maintained that Kejriwal has become a one-stop shop for a large part of the country's downtrodden and unheard.
Non-bailable arrest warrant against Vijay Mallya
Report dated 13/10/2012 @ 3:51 PM
A Hyderabad sessions court issued a non-bailable warrant against Vijay Mallya and five others, in a case filed by GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd (GHIAL), that manages the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in the city.
The case was filed in August after four cheques of Rs.10.3 crore issued by Kingfisher airlines towards airport user charges bounced, and respondents in the case include Kingfisher, its Chairman Mallya and CEO Sanjay Agarwal.
The warrant was issued after Mallya did not appear despite summons issued to him, because he reportedly sought exemption from personal appearance as he was abroad.
The troubled airline faces similar cases in Mumbai and Delhi where airport operators moved the court over dishonoured cheques.
UN agencies say India is child marriage capital of world
Report dated 13/10/2012 @ 3:50 PM
The heads of UNICEF, UNFPA, UN Women and the UN Information Centre in India sent a message to the Union minister of women and child development Krishna Tirath, urging India to increase action to fight the scourge of child marriages, saying child marriage is not a solution to protecting girls from sexual crimes including rape.
In the message the UN agencies stated that over 40% of the world's child marriages happen in India, and in eight states of the country over half of young girls are married before the age of 18. Child marriage is a fundamental human rights violation and impacts all aspects of a girl's life and society as a whole.
This came a day after former Haryana CM Om Prakash Chautala endorsed the Haryana khap panchayat's suggestion to lower the marriageable age of teenagers to 16, in order to check sexual atrocities like rape.
14 Children go missing every day in New Delhi
Report dated 10/10/2012 @ 9:53 PM
According to recent crime data, 14 children go missing in New Delhi every day, at least six of whom are victims of human trafficking.
The United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef) says around 1.2 million children are victims of child trafficking across the world every year.
India’s mega cities such as Delhi and Mumbai are a particular target for criminal gangs that police say traffick children in much the same way they sell drugs.
In August this year, the country’s top court ordered the federal and state governments to provide data on 50,000 missing children after a petition blamed them for failing to solve the trafficking of children by organised gangs.
Police officials said they have rescued hundreds of children from factories and busted large-scale child prostitution rackets but they accept they are sometimes overwhelmed by the scale of the challenge.
The country’s federal detectives admitted last year that there were 815 gangs comprising more than 5,000 members involved in the kidnapping of children for prostitution and begging across India.
In 2006, body parts of 17 children stuffed in plastic bags were found by the police in Nithari, a suburb near New Delhi, a horrifying case that shocked the nation and triggered a raging debate on the safety of children in India.
20% Indians need mental health counseling
Report dated 10/10/2012 @ 9:25 PM
According to the government's statistics, 20% of Indians need counselling at some point of their lives. One per cent of the population suffers from serious mental health disorders, while 5-10% of Indians suffer from moderate disorders.
Depression, the commonest form of mental illness, is prevalent in 30.7 out of 1,000 people in urban areas like Mumbai, according to psychiatrists. Neurotic depression, a mood disorder consisting of chronic depression with less severe but longer lasting symptoms, is prevalent in 22.8 people out of every 1,000. Psychotic depression, a more serious form that may require hospitalization, is prevalent in 7.8 out of every 1,000 people.