Scrolling Notification

When I get time, I listen to music, or read books. If any is left, I blog!

Saturday 22 January 2011

Matter of Art!

                     Maqbool Fida Husain is back in the news. Last Friday, his paintings on display at the Delhi Art Gallery were removed, before the India Art Summit opened to the public, but were surprisingly put back on display the very next day. The confusion was attributed to security threats.
                     Husain chose to remain an Indian for 95 years,.  From painting cinema hoardings, he went on to become one of India’s highest paid painters.  He was nominated to the Rajya Sabha, and was conferred the Padmasree, Padma Bhushan, and Padma Vibhushan.
                     In his insatiable hunger for fame and wealth, the painter turned to indecent portrayal of Hindu Gods, hurting the sentiments of millions.  Disregarding this, when the Kerala government chose to honour him with the ‘Raja Ravi Varma’ award, a member of the erstwhile Royal family termed the decision as tantamount to ‘promoting pornographic art’.
                     Having heinously trudged ‘barefoot’ the huge canvas of freedom, tolerance, and permissiveness, the painter fled the country.  He has now surrendered his Indian passport, and has courted the citizenship of a conservative state in the Arabian Gulf.
                     The obvious question anyone will ask is, having merrily desecrated the hallowed precincts of artistic creativity, social etiquette and common decency through perverted portrayal of the deities of his country of birth, will he paint anything that even remotely offends his religion of birth?
                     Certainly no!  The painter is well aware of the consequences of the dreaded fatwa, which novelist Salman Rushdie, and more recently, Taslima Nasreen the Bangladeshi writer faced.
                     Let us hope, he drops the palette and the brush, and turns to the Almighty in penitence.

Monday 10 January 2011

The Year of Big Fat Loot!

            2010 will go down in history as the year of the big fat loot ! 
            Scam after scam rocked the nation...The Provident Fund Scam, CWG scam, Adarsh Housing scam, 2G Spectrum scam, Lavasa Hill City scan, Karnataka Land scam, Cash for Loans Scam... accounting for over Rs 2.0 trillion! 
            The Global Financial Integrity in a recent report stated that in 60 years of independence, almost Rs 21.0 trillion had been illegally siphoned out of India, the average outflow peaking to Rs 1.22 trillion in 2008. In the same year, India’s underground economy grew to about Rs 30.0 trillion. Against these mind-boggling figures, India’s total external debt as of September 2010 stood at a mere Rs 13.22 trillion!
            The report identifies Corruption, Currency counterfeiting, Tax evasion, and other financial frauds as the main sources of this burgeoning parallel economy. The study also reveals an ever-widening gap between India’s rich and poor. There are many more high net-worth individuals in India now than ever before, while vast chunks of the population continue to live with virtually no access to clean water, education, sanitation or healthcare. 
           Theologian, Speaker and Writer, Sister Joan D Chittister OSB says, 'If the people speak and the king doesn't listen, there is something wrong with the king. If the king acts precipitously and the people say nothing, something is wrong with the people'
          Will the New Year help us realise our strengths and weaknesses as citizens of this great country, and act responsibly?