May 24, 2006

Not quite so sturdy

This post has moved.


Unknown said...

Pills are the best way, yes. Not morphine overdoses. And the yoga still hasn't begun, and neither does it show any signs of beginning.

Anonymous said...

Hi Dilip,

The government has already decided, and yes it has decided on the 52% figures without any concept of creamy layer. So there, I hope now you understand why the modalities of extending reservations is so important. Afterall the difference between Mandal figures and the NSSO figures is 200 million.

I had linked to an affirmative action proposal put forward by DeshPandey and Yogendra Yadav which recognised caste but also things like regional imbalance and gender. However as I thought it does not make sense for people like Arjun Singh.

As I have said on my blog, I believe in affirmative action and also in reservations if they yield benefits. I do not however think that the OBC quota in higher education based on Mandal figures and implemented exactly as SC/ST quotas will benefit anyone. This is the point Pratap Bhanu Mehta has also made.

All I will say now is that may all who think that this will lead to dilution of merit in India and even worse would not uplift the sections of society which really need a leg up be proved wrong. I also hope this will nor perpetuate the feeling of caste but frankly when an old friend calls me a Brahmin just because I oppose reservations in the present form, I don't see that happening.

One last point I would like to make, we all recognise that our parliament is supreme and all that but if it wishes to include more people among Backwards, introduce private sector reservations, increase quota percentages e.t.c it should do that in one go. Then say, ok, now this is the final package for reservations.

So all of us can move forward. I really feel sad that every government which comes to power finds reservations the cheapest way for social reconciliation.

Afterall, we all in our ways wish for a better India. Only the methods might differ.

Thanks for the civil debate. Now we shall move on.

Anonymous said...

A question here that I have asked before and which I again ask
So you feel Laloo Prasad Yadav or his children need reservation? The point still remains that only those groups with electoral clout will get these reservations. Will Kashmiri Pandits who have been made homeless find any place in the reservation list?
WOuld it have been more prudent for the govt to revise all its lists of OBC's and then make decisions?
Will the govt remove certain communities who have benefited from reservations from the backward lists - Both of us know what will happen.
Regards your analogy with illnesses, is reservations in premier institutes the only way to cure the present ills?
Are there better ways -
Improve existing infrastructure and create growth industries in that?
govt exiting certain sectors and become an enabler to grow industries such as tourism and agro industries?
Helping certain communities such as weavers to have better access to markets?
Moreover has Arjun Singh even spoken about Primary education and what his vision is?
Have you seen his replies to Karan Thapar when confronted by facts and figures?
Is this decision taken after doing his homework?
In my company if I take a major decision that affects the company's bottomline, I had better have done my background work properly.
Let us look at reservations in the private sector.
Have you read Azim Premji's take on the matter? If so do you agree with him. There will be no criticism of him as the evil domineering brahmin for pretty obvious reasons.
Is anybody clamoring for reservations in the Bhiwandi powerlooms or the Alang shipyards or any other hell holes. No prizes for guessing which companies are in everybody's sights?

It is surprising even when given facts and figures and the sheer imparacticability of certain moves are presented people continue with certain statements and conveniently duck others. This is what I mentioned at Anand's blog that conclusions have already been made and facts are fitted to prove the conclusion

These are questions that we do not find answers to. Neither so all the people at the Other India.

Anonymous said...

Sure, we must (for example) put primary education in place, and it's a shame we haven't done so all these 60 years, and I believe this is far and away this country's most urgent task. But that's the long-term solution: implementing it and seeing the changes it will bring about is a matter of a generation or more.

If I use a similar analogy, the most urgent problem for me is Islamic terrorism. PErsonally it affects me as the Diwali blasts, Varanasi blasts and the plan to blow up the Ellora caves show. But you have consistently maintained that it is not possible to win the war against terrorism as long as the 1984, 1992 and 2002 culprits are still unpunished. To get them punished is a long process as we have seen (the yoga in your words) but my urgent need is to root out terrorists inmy background who are blowing up temples etc. So I need some strong medicine to root it out. Are you willing to go with the same arguement?

Dilip D'Souza said...

Shrik, that's the tragedy. There are times I wish we'd see hunger strikes and demonstrations and so forth to demand primary education. Seems to me the lack of it harms more people, harms this country more, than anything reservations does.

confused, I'll respond via a post perhaps. Let's see.

Nikhil, it would be interesting to know from you where I've suggested reservations for Lalu Yadav.

I'm telling you my opinion: where we are today, I think reservations are the best -- I really should say least bad -- answer to some of our problems.
Of course there may be better ways. Please suggest them. I notice you've offered some suggestions -- help to weavers, for example. Fine suggestions, and I support them all. I would support their implementation right now. I happen to think that even with them, we need some level of reservations.

I don't throw about "evil domineering brahmins" and the like, so I don't feel any need to respond to that, or feel responsible for those epithets.

Do explain to me what statements or facts I've "ducked". While you're about it, please respond to the figures in this very post that I don't see any response to. Should I conclude that you have conveniently ducked them?

As for terrorism: certainly I believe the perpetrators of Varanasi/Delhi etc should be punished, right here and now. My point about 1984/1992/2002 was exactly what you have suggested: that we will never win the war on terrorism if we remain unwilling to punish the criminals from those times. Even with punishing the terrorists from Delhi and Varanasi.

"Long process"? Well, it has been 22 years since the massacre of 1984. What process is in motion to punish those criminals?

HP said...


Please spare us the useless analogies. I could turn your own analogy against you. I could say that reservations in higher education is like giving cancer radiation therapy to someone suffering from a cold.


Dilip D'Souza said...

Sign that an analogy hit home: when the critic calls it a "useless analogy".

HP: Please do turn my analogy against me. Please do explain how reservations are analogous to giving radiation therapy to someone with a common cold. Make that case. I will listen, I would like to hear it. I mean this seriously, with no facetiousness or sarcasm intended.

zap said...

cmon Dilip...there is a teensie weensie bit of sarcasm there:)
What HP means is that just because there is a disease you can't cure it with ANY medicine.

Those are my views on the reservations debate as well, more or less.

I dont shout hoarse or take to the streets cuz I think anti-reservations rallies are as much about one-own-agenda as is the govts move to introduce 52% reservations.
I usually restrain from saying anything cuz i know that I will Do nothing either way and that takes away my right to crib about anything.
My beer is getting warm.

barbarindian said...

There are sticks to beat Mandal and reservations with.

The one they used to beat communism with comes to mind. Even if 1% of the population cornered 99% of the total seats, reservations would still be immoral and unjustified. Reservation is just government sanctioned bank robbery.

What would you propose next? Strip Narayana Murthy, Azim Premji and the Ambanis and Tatas of their wealth and give it to the freeloaders?

Rahul said...

I agree to most of the part to what Dilip said. I feel that in addition to caste - gender, rural/urban, economic background, community should also play a role in deciding affirmative action. These are some disparities and group which are disadvantaged who should get benefit of affirmative action. We should redefine "merit" to include both academic and social background.

In addition, speaking of primary education, most of disadvantaged sections girls/backward class etc dont complete secondary/middle school education and hence dont get a chance to take benefit of affirmative action. Plus, they end up going to poorly run govt schools which makes them more disadvantaged vs somebody going to English medium private schools. So I would suggest that at primary private schools reservation should be introduced, till govt improves its own machinery.

Dilip D'Souza said...

Zap, I swear on the tickets you once gave me that I meant no sarcasm. Show me the analogy, that's all I ask. Explain it to me, try to persuade me.

I don't mean ANY medicine, I do mean the appropriate medicine for the particular situation. It's my opinion that reservations are the appropriate medicine for the situation we are in now.

Kopoos, of course reservations are an easy way for the government to shirk its responsibilities, for example in providing all Indians primary education. But let's then stand up and make the government accountable for those responsibilities! Let me say again, I wish there were angry strikes and demonstrations insisting that the government get started today on instituting primary education for all.