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Archive for January, 2012

CONCLUSIVE PROOF!


Is it a rule of evidence as per the EVIDENCE ACT of India that when the Matriculation Mark sheet of a person shows a particular date as the date of birth , the court is bound to accept that date as the DATE OF BIRTH OF THAT INDIVIDUAL? Surely NOT. Section 4 of  The Evidence Act 1872 says thus

“Conclusive proof”—When one fact is declared by this Act to be conclusive proof of another, the Court shall, on proof of the one fact, regard the other as proved, and shall not allow evidence to be given for the purpose of disproving it.
The Evidence Act of 1872 gives 2 instances wherein a FACT would be CONCLUSIVE enough to prove another FACT, they are in Sections 112 & 113 regarding the paternity of a child and the other regarding the status of a territory ceded before a particular date to a Princely state etc., by the British Government through a Notification. Except for these 2 instances the EVIDENCE ACT 1872 does not PRESCRIBE instances of CONCLUSIVE PROOF.
The recent controversy regarding the real age of the Chief of Army Staff has generated quite a lot of heat, where the CoAS has even gone to the extent of stating that it was NOT A QUESTION OF TENURE BUT A QUESTION OF HONOUR!
Let us get to the fundamentals. the only instance that a human being cannot remember is his OWN BIRTH, therefore the record in respect of that event has to be recorded or remembered by another person, failing which it is impossible to say anything with certainty. Therefore, when the CoAS  emphasizes that his date of birth is 1951 and not 1950, he is obviously relying on a RECORD.
There are certain issues where, however credible the record might be, had it been scrutinized and if found to have been ERRONEOUS, it is nothing but grace to accept it and move on in life. Take for example the following case where, if the matriculation certificate of a girl shows that she is 16 years of age, whereas her parents had increased her age for accommodating her in that Academic Year of her joining school and if she had not attained 16 years on the date when, unfortunately she was seduced by a man into having carnal relationship, would the ACCUSED’s plea that her DoB in her Matriculation Certificate was showing her age to be above 16 years, be a sufficient reason for the court to acquit the Rapist on the grounds that the date of birth mentioned in the Matriculation Cert showed as above 16 years? NAY, NAY, NAY. If the parents of the girl were to produce a Birth Certificate and able to prove, that the victim was less than 16 years, the courts would have no option but to convict the man of Rape. PERIOD.
In the case of CoAS, he has reached the highest post in the Army and for any reason, if the Government during its due diligence on him stumbled upon something and consequently has in its possession a document to prove that the CoAS was born in1950, the Matriculation Cert would be no CONCLUSIVE PROOF of his birth in 1951, which would prevent the Government from citing that as proof to the court. No doubt, in the normal circumstances. the MATRICULATION CERT would be a good proof, but that could be upturned by a better proof and that would be for the courts to decide.
Any opinion given by a retired Chief Justice of India would and should carry a lot of weight, especially, when four retired CJIs have given similar opinion, but those OPINIONS could never match THE JUDICIAL PRONOUNCEMENTS OF A SITTING JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA, for the simple reason, that the Constitution of India sanctifies a sitting Justice’ judicial opinion and clothes it with precedential value.
If the Supreme Court of India were to find the proof adduced by the Government to be better, the General may have to accept his new date of birth for all practical purposes, there is no question of honour in this, after all even when his DoB was furnished to the school authorities, he could not have given the details out of his MEMORY or with AN INTENTION TO ENJOY A YEAR MORE IN SERVICE. The general should be graceful enough to let the Courts decide and accept the verdict as a mere detection of a FACT or SUSTAINING OF A FACT which was called into question, for which he was not responsible except for BELIEVING THAT THAT WAS HIS DoB.
It seems to me that he is taking advantage of the Government adopted principle, in his case, OF GIVING HIM THE BENEFIT OF DOUBT on the reasoning that the General might not be involved in the matter of getting his DoB entered; and NOT interested in DISCOVERING or ARRIVING AT A CERTAINTY OF HIS DoB, but TOO WILLING TO BELIEVE that 1951 WAS HIS YEAR OF BIRTH!!!
GOD BLESS INDIA.

“NANBAN” – TAMIL REMAKE OF “THREE IDIOTS”


PONGAL release of the Tamil movie  NANBAN, meaning ‘friend’ in Tamil, is the official  Tamil re-make of THREE IDIOTS in Hindi and the basic story lifted from the book ‘FIVE POINT SOMEONE‘, by Chetan Bhaghat.

I watched the movie this evening in Prarthana open air theatre on the East Coast Road at Chennai. To put it succinctly, the movie was FLAT & has nothing Tamil about it. It was like watching the DISCOVERY TV Channel in Tamil, the content had nothing reflecting Tamil culture with dialogues in chaste translated Tamil. It was FLAT. I think the initial hype is likely to wear out real fast and i am sure, the movie is not likely to do well in small towns and villages of Tamil Nadu. The movie is an ‘engineer’ based version of the Tamil movie VASOOL RAJA (which was a remake of MUNNA BHAI M B B S). in which the lead actors were students of a Medical college.

VASOOL RAJA at least had Tamil flavour, with Kamal Haasan and Sneha rendering their respective roles with much elan, even though it was also a remake of the Hindi movie MUNNA BHAI M B B S. The quintessence of MUNNA BHAI was recaptured in true Tamil sense, especially with Kamal Haasan playing a sterling role of  the MEDICAL student, who is not doing Medicine on merit, but just to spite the  Dean/ Principal of the Medical College and also bring in his home-grown beliefs into Allopathy.

NANBAN is the same story happening in an Engineering college. The three actors seem to have striven hard to match up to their Hindi counterparts, but fall FLAT. Shankar’s touch is lacking in this movie, i wonder why he couldn’t absorb the essence of the Hindi movie and transmute it into a Tamil movie of some calibre. He appears to have lost himself in having got into the details with a view towards being faithful to the original, in the process Tamil flavour is wanting.

I hope Shankar sheds doing such movies and truly brings out the linguistic punch and the cultural flavours of Tamil. Good luck to him for his next movie.

NATIONAL PERMIT FOR PASSENGER CARS!


In Chennai, on the East Coast Road running from Chennai to Mahabalipuram and thereafter, the Motor Vehicles officials of Tamil Nadu have been on a drive to harass passenger car owners who ply premium cars  which have Pondycherry registration. The grounds for such harassment is the presumption that permanent residents of Tamil Nadu are getting their cars registered in Pndycherry, with a view towards taking advantage of  the lower rate of ROAD TAX payable!

Under the Motor Vehicles Act, the jurisdiction for collection of ROAD TAX has been vested with the respective states where the vehicles are registered. Consequently, if the vehicles are registered in Tamil Nadu, for allotment of TN number, ROAD TAX would be payable as per the rates fixed by the Tamil Nadu government and notified under the Tamil Nadu Motor Vehicle Rules. The rates of ROAD TAX varies from state to state and is the highest in the state of Karnataka, where depending on the cost of the car, the rate of Road Tax is fixed. In Tamil Nadu the rate is 10% of the invoice value of the car, whereas in Pondicherry the Road Tax is around 1% of the Invoice value of the car. The interesting part is that almost uniformly, all the states of India collect LIFE TIME TAX, which is for 15 years, assumed to be the life of the vehicle. ROAD TAX is appropriated as an ADVANCE TAX and used up by the state in that year’s budget itself, leaving no scope for refund, if any vehicle were to  meet its end before its “life” determined under the ROAD TAX.

Why do the Motor Vehicle officials target the ECR? Because, the Information Technology employees who commute using the  OMR or ECR are easy target to the threats of “seizure” of the car by the officials.  Further, no “local” backlash would not be felt if   transferable IT engineers are caught and made to pay the ROAD TAX as per Tamil Nadu rates. Further, the IT officials/ engineers are likely to pay the tax without demur. The PROBLEM WITH SUCH PAYMENT IS THAT IF THAT PERSON WERE TO GET TRANSFERRED TO ANOTHER STATE, THEN FOR NOT USING THE TAMIL NADU ROADS FOR THE REMAINDER YEARS OF THE 15 YEARS, TAX WOULD NOT BE REFUNDABLE! ABSOLUTELY ILLOGICAL. The Motor Vehicle officials while registering cases on such persons for plying other state registered cars in Tamil Nadu, insert a line saying that the OWNER OF THE CAR, CAME FORWARD ON HIS OWN VOLITION AND PAID TAMIL NADU ROAD TAX! Further, NO REBATE IS GIVEN for the Road Tax already paid in another state of INDIA.

Our CONSTITUTION, which GUARANTEES free movement of persons in India is comatosed by these RULES made by each State to garner revenue. This garnering of REVENUE becomes worse at the beginning of every year, as the budget estimates of the current year is drawing to a close, much below the projection!

ROAD TAX, thus if paid to each state, a person will end up paying for all the 28 states and 7 Union Territories. That is the only time when he will ACQUIRE A RIGHT TO PLY ON ALL THE ROADS OF OUR COUNTRY WITHOUT BEING HARASSED BY THE MOTOR VEHICLE OFFICIALS! No doubt, that no re-registration is required if the vehicle is in the same state for less than a month, but if a person is likely to commute between 2 or 3 states often, should he pay the ROAD TAX for each of the states?

It is time the PARLIAMENT makes a law and allows NATIONAL PERMITS for Passenger cars too, so that persons in transferable jobs and also persons who suffer from wanderlust could apply for it and escape from the nuisance of the state Motor Vehicle authorities. But who cares? Everyone is busy CHAMPIONING THE CAUSE OF THE “POOR”, LEAVING THE SYSTEM TO THE VAGARIES OF OUR IRRATIONAL TAX COLLECTION SYSTEMS.

PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE & MULLAIPERIYAR!


The GREATEST PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE ever discovered by the human mind, finds a place in the BIBLE at PROVERBS Chapter 26 Verse 13, which is as folllows:-

                The slothful man saith, There is a lion in the way; a lion is in the streets. 

A slothful man’s interpretation of the PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE is motivated by his own PROCLIVITY. The slothful man wants to be idle. He is IDLE not because he doesn’t have work, but he doesn’t see IMMEDIATE PROFIT in his labour. The slothful man by looking for IMMEDIATE PROFIT, has lost his WORK CULTURE. Work by itself is not paying, if WORK is to be profitable one needs a man with CAPITAL. Because, a part of the capital would turn into the WAGES for the workman’s LABOUR. It is that wages when wisely invested and utilized by the WORKMAN, over a period of time turns to CAPITAL in his own hands. But, who can wait with HOPE for so long and burn up 25 years of one’s LIFE? cries the SLUGGARD. So what does the sluggard do? CREATE FEAR PSYCHOSIS and indulge in  scare mongering that a LION IS IN THE STREETS. No need for any proof, just spread canards and unfounded theories. Can one  dignify this as  the PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE? No, NOT AT ALL.

In the MULLAIPERIAR ISSUE (mullaperiyar for my brethren from Kerala, who have a penchant for slurring over  vowels and connecting consonants – eg. MULLAI + PERIYAR becomes MULLAPERIAR the ‘ai’ is slurred and in INCOME, the N+K  becomes NG), the principle pleaded by the Lawyers representing Kerala is that as a matter of abundant cautela, since the scientific community is not in unison on the invulnerability of the Mullaiperiar dam, and as this involves the life of the Keralites, the Mullaiperiar dam is to be decommissioned and a new dam is to be constructed!

Just a few weeks back, the news papers had reported that out of the 183 countries assessed by the World Bank, India is said to rank 182 in ENFORCEMENT OF CONTRACTS. Not surprising at all, as the reasons adduced are not only specious, but the solutions offered are too BIASED in favour of Kerala.

Look at the AGREEMENT entered into between the Presidency of Madras and the Maharaja of Travancore in the late 19th century. The avowed reason for building the dam was not merely to supply water to the districts of Madurai, Ramnad etc., but also to fish in the dam and use the waters of the dam for such other purposes as desired by the Madras state. The spin-off was that the then Tampuran was able to control the inundation of a few areas of the then Travancore state. So the spin off was not mentioned as an EXPLICIT BENEFIT to Travancore state, yet the benefit aspired, and utilized by the Madras state was to be paid for as  the Lease money. Then HYDRO POWER generation also started and the spin-offs for the ENDURANCE of Tamil Nadu had started accruing. In concession to the idle Keralites, payments was made as license fee for such generation and also the fishing rights were surrendered- all after DEMOCRACY HAD SET IN, IN KERALA after Independence. Now the benefits for Tamil Nadu is much more than the benefits which is accruing to Kerala. The land rates have sky rocketed and the tourism industry could do well with space around the periphery of Mullaiperiar. So KERALA WANTS TO RESILE FROM THE CONTRACT. AND IN KEEPING WITH THEIR NATURE are making a new offer of a new dam, when the matter for determination before the Supreme Court is whether the structure would be safe at 152 feet after reinforcement of the existing structure. SIMPLE. But the boys are boys and WANT to be boys, that is disheartening.

According to an Ex PWD Minister of Tamil Nadu, Mr. Durai Murugan, the Government of Kerala DID NOT GIVE ELECTRICITY CONNECTION TO THE PWD SITE OFFICE at MULLAIPERIAR! Would an Ex- Minister lie on the face of records? Nay. Bot the present CM of Kerala says, “If the political leadership of both the states meet, the issue would be sorted out in 5 minutes!” What a JOKE? Here is a CM who instead of honouring the Supreme Court verdict gets a contrary bill passed in the Assembly calls for a meeting!

It is time the political honchos of Kerala sit together and FIND A WAY OF HONOURING A CONTRACT ENTERED BETWEEN THEIR TAMPURAN AND THE FORMER MADRAS STATE, instead of making these SLUGGISH REMARKS, which are devoid of any sensible content or intent.

It is time Mr. Oommen Chandy issues orders to the briefing officials not to resort to PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE, which is used PRIOR TO EXECUTIVE DECISION MAKING and NOT FOR RENEGING FROM CONTRACT,,WHICH HAVE BEEN IN FORCE FOR MORE THAN A CENTURY.

Truly speaking, the only solution to this problem is that we from Tamil Nadu return Agastheeswaram, Kalkulam, Vilavancode and Thovalai taluks to Kerala and get back Devikulam and Peermedu taluks from Kerala…………..MY DEAD UNCLES WOULD RISE UP FROM THEIR GRAVES AND KILL ME, if i make this suggestion seriously!

But boys stop preening to attract girls and GROW UP, some day you have to become MEN and OWN UP TO THE CONTRACTS MADE BY OUR FATHERS and FOREFATHERS too!

 

Mullaiperiyar issue!


The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, a few weeks back, had got published an APPEAL in the major English Dailies on the Mullaiperiyar issue. The closing remarks in the said APPEAL, like the  scorpion, had the sting.

The sting of the APPEAL says that RESORT OWNERS have, in the periphery of the catchment areas, built up resorts and ENCROACHED upon the land leased to the erstwhile MADRAS STATE. It is insinuated therein that these encroachers are putting pressure on the Government in the name of Tourism Industry to ensure that the level of water in the Mullaiperiyar dam is not increased, so that their resorts don’t get inundated.

This allegation appears to be the only verifiable FACT which has come out of all the barrage that have been flung forth and back from both the states of Tamil Nadu and Kerala. For the life of me i do not understand why the Kerala government cannot verify this and rebut it, as this is a verifiable FACT. My opinion on this is that the people of Kerala live not on FACTS, but on IDEAS perceived as FACTS, whereas Tamil Nadu, the land of 3 Nobel Laureates in sciences and a mathematical wizard in Ramanujam,  has a very scientific approach to FACTS, .

For example, when the question arose as to whether MAGARADEEPAM was man made or a divine happening, most took the side that it was a DIVINE HAPPENING. Even a trustee’s statement saying that camphor was transported in huge quantities to make the MAGARADEEPAM happen on a particular day, place and time, was disregarded and his voice of REASON was silenced on the grounds that REASON should not be allowed to destroy a BELIEF which could be deleterious to the devotees of Lord Ayyappa. The realists stated that allowing a belief to dwindle agaist “reason” may kill the Religious Tourism industry of the state of Kerala.

Kerala believes that FACTS do not make up the TRUTH but that BELIEF should be sustained even at the cost of FACTS !

Another issue is that how could a person call another person’s OPINION as IMMATURE, without laying it open to the public the PROOF OF IMMATURITY? If i claim that an underaged boy was driving a car in a public road before he was 18, i have to prove it- isn’t it? I cannot bring in allegations of IMMATURITY without showing some semblance of proof , yet one malayali politician calls another Tamil politician as IMMATURE and the Tamil politician concedes and begs pardon!

LIFE doesn’t mean ‘existing comfort’ and therefore allow things to remain the way they are found. One should rise to the occasion and deal with issues like a MAN. No doubt, if the dam were to break much life and property would be at stake, but on the other side if water is not raised to a certain level the farmers in Ramnad district of Tamil Nadu may lose even the single crop that they cultivate per year. So a balanced approach is required. In this after all the years, the cultivable land in Tamil Nadu also must have increased, thereby requirement of water going up. This, the then TAMPURAN must have quantified in terms of tmc ft per year instead of giving the whole area to the then Madras State. I personally think that this issue is nothing but the FEMININE RESENTMENT of the matrilineal minds of the Tampuran worshippers who are unable to digest that there is a residual 870 odd years before the CONTRACT expires! So, they are busy inventing DOOMS DAY predictions and creating a FEAR PSYCHOSIS, to avoid facing facts squarely.

I personally believe that the only good thing that happened to Kerala was C P Ramasami Iyer, who not only brought industrialization but also a social change to partially dismantle the “caste based lunatic asylum” (courtesy: Swami Vivekananda) that Kerala was. Now the matrilineal boys are even taking credit for having offered Vice Chancellorship to Einstein ( which was again another CP’s effort).

The difference between a MAN and a boy is that a MAN is NOT AFRAID OF FACING FACTS OWNING UP AND DOING SOMETHING POSITIVE FROM A SCRATCH, whereas BOYS love to deflect, sublimate and look for reasons which are not fact based. The BOYS want a new dam- why? Simple, they LOVE STRATEGIES and not SUSTAINED HARD WORK! The boys want to spend their money on the new DAM and then enter into FRESH AGREEMENT with the Tamil Nadu government and make the MULLAIPERIAR (MULLAPERIYAR for the Boys!) a source of income! When the Mullaiperiyar dam was built, the then Tampuran, Visakham Tirunal (the boys were so enamoured of astrology that they named their Tampurans after the names of the stars under which the eldest nephew of the previous king was born!) begged the British to build a MULLAIPERIYAR dam so that the  flood waters in the catchment areas do not destroy their land and took the lease money for the submerged land. Now that the benefits are obvious, the boys want a LION’S SHARE and do not want the hard working Tamilians, who have maintained the structure for over a century to enjoy the fruits of it. The boys love their GOOD LIFE – they want to fleece tourists in the name of providing CURATIVE MASSAGES (in fact this is nothing but giving rest to the body, which the patient badly needs and the boys practise day in and day out – DOING NOTHING!), SPIRITUAL SOLUTIONS (mantras, tantras and all other supernatural esoteric bullshitting!) and finally PILLOW STORIES (these are “strategies’ shared between spouses, as if others do not figure out what is possible in a given set of circumstances through STRUCTURAL THINKING). GROW UP BOYS, GROW UP! GET REAL.

Let us get to VERIFIABLE FACTS. The only VERIFIABLE FACT is whether the leased lands are  UN-ENCROACHED. If not, let us clear all the encroachments and then start looking from where the VOICES of DOOMS DAYERS emanate from!

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