Archive for the ‘Current Events’ Category

Images from a lost Glacier

Rubbish at Rohtang. Did they destroy the glacier by ZZ category explosives ?

Message on ‘Gobal Warming and Glaciers retreating’ gets accross

This is from an old friend I have not met in years, who saw my speech to the UN live in a screening in Seattle. When you have something passionate and from the heart to say, the Universe ensures the message gets accross to the people :
In a film screening in Seattle, I saw you on the mountaintop with a message to raise our voices regarding climate change. Very powerful and it reminded me once again how much I admire your dedication to what matters most in life. Stay well my friend,
Reagan ”
Thank you, Reagan, and I hope people like will carry the message forward. For we need to save our planet despite the politicians, not through them

21st September – Global Wake Up call to world leaders on Climate Change

Tonight I go to Rohtang Pass to speak live to the UN along with with Kofi Annan, and a bunch of other well known people from different walks of life across the world. I will be at the receding Glacier speaking on the horrific effects of Climate Change caused by the supremely stupid way we are treating our planet, and all our messages will be beamed live to the UN minutes before they begin their conference on Climate change on the 22nd. This is a Greenpeace initiative. Here is a message to all of you from Greenpeace :
On Monday September 21, citizens across the world will unite to give a “wake-up call’ to world leaders to get climate change talks on track and deliver a “fair, ambitious and binding” new climate treaty.
The “TCKTCKTCK” campaign – a unique global movement bringing together NGOs, community groups, faith-based organizations and a wide cross-sector of society for action on climate change – is leading the campaigning effort. Groups will raise their collective global voice at actions around the world on the September 21 – dubbed Global Wake-Up Call Day.
The global outcry comes amid expert warnings that a UN climate pact in Copenhagen in December risks failure unless world leaders revive bogged-down negotiations at a UN Summit in New York on September 22.
Over 1000 events organised in more than 100 countries will sound the alarm with people gathering in public places, ringing cell phone alarms and making actual ‘wake-up’ phone calls to politicians.
We’ve teamed up with the film makers behind the new docu-drama-animation ‘Age of Stupid’ and the tcktcktck campaign to deliver the world’s biggest film premier. And we want you to be there.
Age of Stupid stars Oscar-nominated Pete Postlethwaite as a man living alone in the devastated world of 2055, looking back at “archive” footage from 2007 and asking: why didn’t we stop climate change when we had the chance?
Between September 21 and 22, Age of Stupid will open at more than 600 locations in dozens of countries, on every continent, right around the world. The premiere will feature the showing of the film, and a broadcast from the Green Carpet in New York, where actress Gillian Anderson will lead luminaries including Kofi Annan, Mary Robinson and James Hansen in a discussion about how we can stop catastrophic climate change. In India, Shekhar Kapur will be present at the premiere after bearing witness to the glacial retreat in the Himalayas and speaking LIVE to millions watching the global premiere in New York & in more than 600 theatres across the world.
Greenpeace and other tcktcktck partners will be contributing live feeds from the front lines of climate change, and are backing efforts to get the film seen by as many politicians and diplomats as possible.
In Delhi, the film will be screened in an exclusive premiere on Tuesday, September 22, 2009, at the PVR Select City Walk in Saket. We hope that you will attend, be interested in being part of this event and that you will help us to spread the word about the importance of addressing the climate crisis now!

Death of a Chief Minister

Everyone mourns the untimely death of Chief Minister of Andra Pradesh, Rajashekhara Reddy in a helicopter crash. But the related Media reports (if true) of Congress party workers scouring the state for recent deaths from natural causes , and trying to report them as ‘suicides’ out of grief for the passing away of the Chief Minister are disgusting. Is there no limit to what politics and politicians in our country will stoop to ?
Imagine party workers going to the relatives grieving for the death of their loved ones, and offering them money, or even threatening them into giving false statements that the death ‘was caused by suicide out of grief over the Chief Minister’s death’. What other sickness exists in the mind of a political leader that can even think of this, and then order the party workers to carry this out ? Of course I am assuming that Media reports are true and not just ‘paid for’ by a rival political party. Don’t know where the morals of Indian Media lie anymore either.
Sorry about putting this in the blog – after I promised this would be a blog about uplifting thoughts for a while, but could not get this out of my mind. I care about my country and these things disturb me, as I am sure it does all citizens of our country.

Google removes korean malware alert from popular Blogs in India

Thankfully Google has removed the red alert from some of India’s popular blogsites including our own. I do not totally understand it, but apparently there was an attempt through a Korean website to attack some popular Blogs in India. What they gained from this I am not sure, but if you tried to access through Internet Explorer, there was no such warning and our Bog was clear as always. Sorry about the inconvenience and it is back to business as usual. Shekhar

Swine Flu pandemic over in Mumbai

Or so the State Government would have us believe. And the fickle Indian print and TV news media circus. Where the headlines three days ago were about how we are plunging headlong into the greatest pandemic of all times. And three days later ?
The Malls and the Cinema halls are open again. The week long order to close schools is over. The Media has found a new obsession in Shah Rukh Khan’s 90 minute questioning by US immigration.
So is the pandemic over ? Is the State Government saying that it is safe now to go into the Cinema’s and Malls. In three days ??? Or was the original order that created such a panic in Mumbai completely not thought out ? Just a casual knee jerk to gain political mileage ? Should the government not come out with a statement to it’s citizens ?
It probably is so muddled that it does not have one.
The word on the streets is that while the police went around closing some Malls, others were left open. Why was that ? The word on the street also is that it depended on how much the Malls paid. Paid who ?

Presiden Obama to invite Shah Rukh Khan to a beer

Having heard of many friend’s experiences, I completely empathize with Shah Rukh Khan’s experience at Newark Airport in the US. It is somewhat disturbing to suddenly be interrogated and made to feel like a potential terrorist.
However lets get a perspective on this. The US has a much more compassionate President in Obama, who is trying his best to reach to the Muslim people all over the world to make peace, and the world community must take that into account. But it takes time to change everything. Every country has to do what it believes it needs to protect it’s civilians. I am sure most Indians would ask for far stricter border protection at our airports to screen potential terrorist threats.
I believe what happened to Shah Rukh was a huge blunder, but what happened to our ex President Abdul Kalam was far far worse. It happened on Indian soil. But I admired the calmness with which Abdul Kalam dealt with the issue himself and displayed so much humility. I expect Shah Rukh to do the same as I am sure he will. Only he can defuse the situation.
Unlike our Cabinet Minister Ambica Soni who said we should respond with a ‘tit for tat’. What are you going to do m/s Soni ? Interrogate every American Citizen arriving at our shores for an hour and a half ? Or wait for Brad Pitt to arrive here ? Cabinet Ministers need to make more considered statements.
I do not agree with religious profiling. I still think the world (and not just the US) is Islamic Phobic. The more fear and phobia there is, the more the world will give rise to young Muslim minds that will turn to extremism. I think the US needs to reconsider how to approach the whole problem of Airport Security. Was this not what finger printing and retina photography was supposed to do at immigration ? Give the immigration officer an instant profile of the person entering the US ?
I also think President Obama and his British allies have not thought through there Afghan policies. Creating the nation of Afghanistan into a battlefield for your own perceived notions about a threat to your own security is not fair. In the course Pakistan has been taken over by fundamentalists too. Afghanistan threatens to turn into Obama’s Vietnam.
In light of which what happened to Shah Rukh is a minor incident which we should protest about, yes. Ensure that this does not happen to an Indian public figure like him again, and move on.
And President Obama, adept as he is diplomatically and politically, should invite Shah Rukh to a family dinner over beer and one of his Bollywood films.

Why are private doctors not enabled to treat Swine Flu ?

While no one is sure how real a pandemic the H1N1 (swine flu) virus is, one thing is for sure. The government of India is completely unprepared to deal with what some experts are saying is about to happen. A dependency on government run hospitals, where sanitation conditions are such that infections abound is dangerous. They are just not equipped to deal with a pandemic.
The best thing the government can do right now is to release the drug Tamiflu to private doctors, and set up mobile testing centres all over the city. I know Tamilflu is a brand protected by patent, but a pandemic is as good a time as any to break that code and manufacture a generic drug based on the formulation. Indian drug companies have done it for aids and have sold the drug at affordable prices to Asia and africa and are saving llves. Yes they are being sued, and there are legal issues there – but surely human life is more important than.
There are so many effective NGO’s across the breadth of Urban India that have the resources and the will to act. Large industrial cororations who themselves will be seriously hit if there really is a Pandemic, will be able to look after their employees and provide effective distribution outlets.
I remember when the then Minister of Health made headlines on smoking not being allowed in films and he was splashed all over the media constantly – well, time for the health minister to kick in on a real issue now.
And if this is a Pandemic (and no one is sure that it is), then surely all non essential places where there are crowds in close contact (like cinemas and schools) should be temporarily shut down ?

James Baldwin on Michael Jackson

James Baldwin, writing in an essay in 1985 in his essay Here Be Dragons, where he says :
“The Michael Jackson cacophony is fascinating in that it is not about Jackson at all. I hope he has the good sense to know it and the good fortune to snatch his life out of the jaws of a carnivorous success. He will not swiftly be forgiven for having turned so many tables, for he damn sure grabbed the brass ring, and the man who broke the bank at Monte Carlo has nothing on Michael.”And he goes on to say, “Freaks are called freaks and are treated as they are treated—in the main, abominably—because they are human beings who cause to echo, deep within us, our most profound terrors and desires.”

Micheal Jackson’s Angelic Spirit

Did Micheal jackson live in his human self or his spirit self ?
Without the energy of his spirit, it could not be possible that every human being on this planet knew his music, his dance. It did not matter that you were in innner Mangolia, or a potential suicide bomber in the Gaza Strip, or an Israeli soldier, or an kid from the most remote rural India. Everyone knew MJ, every one knew his song, and everyone knew his dance.
In judging the show “India’s Got Talent” I was amazed at the amount of young people from small town and rural India that did Micheal Jackson impersonations and called him their Guru. In fact the most brilliant one was an 11 year old adivasi boy, who claimed that Micheal Jackson’s spirit entered him when he danced.
The few times I met MJ through my friend Deepak Chopra (they were good friends), I met an extremely humble man. One who made me feel like he was my fan rather than the other way round. He reminded me of a few others that I met, who’s spirits were obviously uncomfortable with the limitations of their bodies, the spirits were dying to soar and to be Universal. Heath Ledger and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan were like that. Spirits not wanting to be limited by the body. All died young. Like Angels.
And what is it about us that we cannot handle strong spirits. Do we have to crucify them ? I saw the agony the Micheal Jackson had to endure in last years accused of crimes against children based not on proof but on flawed accusations.
When Angels appear amongst us, we are compelled to crucify them.