Views that never cease

All posts by Gobind Thukral

Story of an absurd regulation on cattle - Gobind Thukral

Sanity is normally not a hallmark of governments, yet  citizens expect some sense, particularly from a democratic dispensation in a country. Two developments in quick succession of no grave consequences for the people could have been matter of great amusement, so missing from over serious public discourse. First was the   union environment ministry’s order that would almost kill cattle breeding, marketing, meat and leather industry,     adversely impacting the rural economy. A few maverick animal rights people have prevailed upon and made the Modi government promulgate, Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules, 2017, traversing the parent law, the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960. If implemented, […]

By Gobind Thukral |June 9, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment

Cleaning the fiscal mess, a promise worth keeping - Gobind Thukral

Punjab chief minister Capt. Amarinder Singh finds clearing the fiscal mess a herculean task. Two months into the hot seat, he and his colleagues are discovering, much to their chagrin, more and more of the clutter all around. Before the elections, it was widely circulated that Punjab’s debt burden was Rs   1, 81,727   crore. Now the latest estimates place it more than Rs 2.5 lakh crore. Finance minister Manpreet Singh Badal who is working on a white paper on state’s fiscal health, fears this could be even more. Punjab’s interest payments are steadily rising, having zoomed up by 58% since 2011-12 to reach Rs 9,900 crore” in 2015-16. These now […]

By Gobind Thukral |June 9, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment

Is it the end of road for the AAP? - Gobind Thukral

Where is adventurism leading the Aam Aadmi Party? It was billed to emerge victorious in Punjab and provide a government which people would have never experienced. This victory, its convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal thought   was his much before the commencement of elections.   A victory in Punjab would have given the fledging party a national representation to challenge the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Same was thought about Goa. It would have also meant an alternative politics, away from the rundown system that   prevails.   The AAP attracted lot of people; young and old, idealists and pragmatists, political and social activists and the youth, besides the common people. […]

By Gobind Thukral |May 15, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment

Brinkmanship and rhetoric on river waters - Gobind Thukral

If anyone listens to what political leaders in Punjab and Haryana are saying on the intricate river water dispute between the two states, one could carry the impression of two countries getting battle ready. Here is leader of the opposition Abhay Chautala threatening to stop Punjab vehicles entering Haryana from July 10.  He declared all buses, official vehicles including those of   the ministers and officers   with Punjab numbers would not be allowed to enter unless Punjab initiated construction of the SYL canal. His party, the Indian National Lok Dal workers would block national highway number one at Ambala, the main entry point from Punjab. Punjab politicians from the ruling Congress […]

By Gobind Thukral |May 15, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment

Achilles’ heel of Punjabi Diaspora - Gobind Thukral

A sizable and influential section of Punjabi immigrants, hoping to change the course of political events during the Punjab elections, sent volunteers with bagful of dollars.   They came in hordes particularly from America and Canada,   and even from other countries including United Kingdom.  Their shrill campaign to make their favourite Aam Aadmi Party win at one time looked to be upsetting the Congress apple cart and the ruling Akali BJP combine also felt the heat. A section of the Punjabi Diaspora from Canada that had the attention of the Liberal Party and its government led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau blocked the entry of Capt. Amarinder Singh, a former chief […]

By Gobind Thukral |April 29, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment

Cow protection, lynching mobs and the state - Gobind Thukral

Haryana’s Mewat was once considered secular Indian’s proud bastion from where the Muslims heeding the call of Mahatma Gandhi refused to migrate to Pakistan. Mewat has been bastion of peace, though economic and social development remained mostly on paper, a false hope. But ever since the advance of the BJP and its supporting cow vigilante, Mewatis are feeling apprehensive. Last winter saw a ‘ban’ on meat Biryani, the popular non protein rich vegetarian dish. And ,now last fortnight Jaisinghpur’s Pehlu Khan, a 55 year old dairy farmer who had ventured to purchase cows from a cattle fair in Rajasthan   and was transporting then in his pickup van was mercilessly lynched […]

By Gobind Thukral |April 29, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment

Sense of waste grips BJP legislators in Haryana - Gobind Thukral

Over a dozen BJP legislators in Haryana strongly feel that their government is wasting itself on small matters of lesser consequence and ignoring the larger picture.  They feel neglected and are knocking at the doors of their senior leaders at the national level.  It is over a month now but their efforts have not borne much result.  Even this week, these legislators and now some ministers as well had long parleys with top leaders, more of those located at the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh office in Delhi. The spokesperson for the dissident group Santosh Sarwan said that the Khattar government had been giving them a step motherly treatment. “It is like […]

By Gobind Thukral |April 6, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment

Punjab Congress encounters discomfort of massive majority - Gobind Thukral

Capt Amarinder Singh is squarely in the saddle. But the massive win in Punjab has brought its own kind burden. Clearly not every one of the 77 legislators in a house of 117 that occupy the treasury benches can be a minister. There is a constitutional provision that allows a total of only 18 ministers and the two more MLAs can be accommodated as a speaker and a deputy speaker. But the rest given the nature of politics cannot sit back and cool their heels. Pressures are already at work. This has forced the chief minister to dangle a carrot outside his residence all the time. When he appointed nine […]

By Gobind Thukral |April 6, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment

Punjab seeks a responsible government - Gobind Thukral

Punjab voters, defying all opinion or exit polls have voted decisively   in favour of the Congress. It has mustered 77 of 117 assembly seats and Capt. Amarinder Singh, scion of erstwhile Patiala royal family is now people’s Maharaja, as he wishes to be known. Punjab has also offered hope to the beleaguered Congress to survive the BJP onslaught. Punjab voters were decisive in more than one way; they out rightly rejected the Akali BJP coalition’s third successive bid for power and relegated to third place with 18 seats  and dealt severe blow to the aspirations of the Aam Aadmi Party by letting it have mere 20 seats . The Congress […]

By Gobind Thukral |March 18, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment

Populist budget avoids harsh realities - Gobind Thukral

It normally happens in an election year that ruling parties avoid imposing taxes and resort to popular pronouncements.   Statistical jugglery is a favoured weapon to hide deficits which are bequeathed to the incumbent government. Rulers in the first three to four years take some bold measures and enrich the coffers while initiating development.   But the BJP government in Haryana in its third budget while keeping a large deficit intact has tried to take the populist route. It is still an irony that the budget fails to address the burgeoning problems that the people face. The promised fast industrial growth is still a mirage, agrarian crisis despite some respite from poor […]

By Gobind Thukral |March 9, 2017| Southasiapost | 0 comment