Thursday, November 22, 2018

The Gold medal winning Hockey team in 1964 Tokyo Olympics was coached by a person who played hockey wearing dhoti in his young days 11-22

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            Habul Mukherjee with Balbir Singh (member of gold winning Indian team of 1964)

India was coached by Habul Mukherjee, who used to play hockey in a dhoti in his heydays. The team went on a two and half month tour to New Zealand and Malaysia before heading to Tokyo.

Habul Mukherjee (N.N. Mukherjee) was along with Dhyanchand a member of the first Hockey Gold Medal winning  of 1928. 


IHF President Ashwini Kumar did the running commentary for Akashvani in the final at 1964 Tokyo Olympics. Each move forward by India was a potential goal in his eyes. And when Mohinder Lal converted the penalty stroke, a hysterical Ashwini Kumar cried himself hoarse. It was an instant in which Akashvani and Ashwini Kumar were made for each other, a sound-byte that would become frozen in time.

This amounted to more than making amends for the first loss of Olympic hockey finals and the shocking loss of gold medal to Pakistan after winning the hockey Olympic gold for six consecutive years from 1928, with the 1940 and 1944 Olympics being not conducted due to world II.

The shock of losing the Olympic gold in 1960 Rome was almost as intense as losing the war to China two years later in 1962. It was a common sight to see some students or other weeping in the school for the dear one lost in the war.

 I did not understand, why wars were fought (I still don't), but I learned, how valuable a life is, and how much of a vacuum it creates, when it is lost.

 I was nine years old, too young to understand politics, but old enough to understand sports. Like every other Indian, it was emotionally high, it was almost a "Paradise Regained" situation."

we hadn't still got into the too much of sports situation like these days, where we brush off both victory  and defeat with a seemingly mature 'We win some, we lose some statement.

As usual the gloom turned into criticism of Indian Hockey Federation, Indian government and its sports policy. No one of course accused IHF of corruption or nepotism, because people knew, who the IHF president was. The Indian Hockey Federation president was Naval Tata cousin of J.R.D. Tata, and father of Ratan Tata.

The then prime minister Pt. Nehru asked Naval Tata to investigate the failure and submit a report to him. Naval Tata did something better than that, he took total responsibility for the failure and resigned. No amount of coaxing and convincing succeeded in changing mind or decision. He was totally crest fallen and held himself totally responsible for the loss. He did not believe in the passing of the buck or starting the blame game. He knew the Indians failed in spite of the best efforts by the team members and the support team. Instead of firing the coach or the captain, he fired himself. Unfortunately, no one followed the precedent he set. 

Well no one followed the precedent sent by Lal Bahadur Shastry either, who resigned as Railway minister after just one train accident.

That was the early golden period of honesty in independent India, when people took the responsibility and resigned even if it wasn’t direct failure, compared to later times, when people shook off the responsibility, and continued in spite of severe critism. As the time passed, the skin of the politicians grew thicker and thicker and their conscience thinner and thinner. No amount of criticism could penetrate their thick skin, and their conscience was too thin to be impacted by the criticism. 

Classic example is that, when India lost the war to China, Pt. Nehru the then prime minister did not resign, he found a convenient scapegoat in Krishna Menon, Krishna Menon was made to resign, and strangely, even the opposition did not insist on Pt. Nehru’s resignation’s, they settled for Krishna Menon’s resignation. 

It seems, even politics was a gentlemen game those days....……….

Well after the 1964 Olympics, India had to wait for 16  more years to get their next men’s field  hockey gold medal. It was at the Moscow Olympics in 1980 that India won its 7th gold medal defeating Spain in the finals. This Olympics were boycotted by the nations like USA, UK, Australia, Pakistan, Netherlands, and Germany. That was the last hockey gold medal India won in Field Hockey, after that, we were never in the medal list also. 

We did win the 1975 world cup. but that's a different story...

It would be almost 40 medal less years, when we go for the 2020 Olympics. 

We may never have a coach who is Indian down to his attire (dhoti), Since ages, we don't even have an Indian as a coach for the Indian Hockey team.
But, let us hope, we may win Olympic Hockey Medal some day in future.

Best of Luck to India and Indians.


Sunday, September 2, 2018

The RSS, an inside view...

RSS an inside view….

This  article is based on a book by Walter Anderson based on interviews and interactions with the top leadership of the RSS. I have also taken inputs from the recent speeches of Shri. Mohan Bhagwat and other RSS functionaries.

This book throws up many surprises, and successfully thrashes many views and perceptions that people have about the RSS, its intent, policy and its relations with the BJP.

Contrary to the public perception and belief,

RSS is neither the parent organisation of BJP, nor it dictates its policies, though some of the important functionaries hold important positions in the RSS. RSS top leadership takes pains to explain that RSS has its own identity, and it is not dependent BJP for survival. In this context, 

Top functionaries of the Sangh say that it had always had warm relations with Indira and Rajiv Gandhi and that the frost set in with Sonia Gandhi and now Rahul, who attacks them and conflates them with the BJP. RSS especially, doesn’t want it to be bracketed with the BJP and criticized by the congress party for its political expediency.


RSS is politically neutral, In the last seventy years, RSS has officially participated in just two general elections. Once in 1977 after the emergency and in 2014 to defeat the corrupt UPA government.

RSS is angry with Narendra Modi for not enforcing discipline in BJP.

RSS did not like the appointment of  Yogi Adityanath as the Chief Minister of UP.  Yogi was never a RSS member and in fact, he started an organization in competition with the RSS. Hence RSS is upset that a non RSS member was selected, when so many able RSS candidates were available for selection in such a big and important state for the RSS.

RSS is also angry with Modi for not dealing with Gau Rakshaks firmly, and taking steps to control lynching, and it is is unhappy with Modi for not taking firm action against the party workers, MLAs, MPs, and ministers making statements in support of the lynching and the accused including them..

And finally, the RSS does not believe in the war cry of “Congress Mukt Bharat “ by Modi and Shah. This has been clear by Mohan Bhagwat himself. RSS believes in a pluralistic society, where all political thought processes can coexist. And  this is reflected by the invitation extended to Rahul Gandhi, Sitaram Yechuri and others.

There seems to be a shift to the position during the Guruji Golwalker days, when the RSS did not support any political party including the Jan Sangh. In accordance with this shift, it is inviting people having a difficult view point.

While inviting Mr. Pranab Mukherjee was a beginning in this direction, the evolution in this shift policy comes by way of an invite to the lecture in Delhi by Mohan Bhagwat titled "The Future of Bharat: an RSS perspective" to Rahul Gandhi, Sitaram Yechuri and some other prominent citizens.

 "You call us exclusivist. Well, now we are going at the highest level, from city to city, explaining our ideology. Bhagwat-ji held a similar lecture in Mumbai recently. The RSS has had a personality evolution. We have changed our dress and said that those who accept India as their motherland are all our people. We are categorically against violence. People must be made aware of this which is why the outreach at the level of the Sarsanghchalak (RSS chief)."

The other significant message is reportedly for the BJP. Earlier, Bhagwat had publicly contradicted BJP President Amit Shah by saying the Sangh does not endorse his war cry of a "Congress-mukt Bharat". Coming as this does in election season, the BJP is not happy about the meet, greet and chat with the Sangh. BJP leaders are hoping Gandhi and other opposition leaders like the Left's Sitaram Yechury refuse the invite. This will ensure that they can call out the hypocrisy of the Congress's proclaimed "inclusive" politics. The BJP in this reaction is fretting like an only child faced with a rival, says an amused senior Sangh.

BJP leaders are hoping Gandhi and other opposition leaders like the Left's Sitaram Yechury refuse the invite. This will ensure that they can call out the hypocrisy of the Congress's proclaimed "inclusive" politics. The BJP in this reaction is fretting like an only child faced with a rival, says an amused senior Sangh functionary. "The BJP wants to ensure that we keeping providing the lubricant that ensures that they continue in power," he says.  Top functionaries of the Sangh say that it had always had warm relations with Indira and Rajiv Gandhi and that the frost set in with Sonia Gandhi and now Rahul, who attacks them and conflates them with the BJP. 

However, I feel that Rahul Gandhi should accept the invitation in order to increase his understanding of RSS and stop the meaningless criticism of the organization. 

Thanks for reading my article, please come out with your views and insights.

Best Wishes, 


Please also read my other article on RSS 

The RSS, I knew in the sixties

Friday, June 1, 2018

Modi Economic Policy, A case of Charismatic Chaos. How much Halo, How much substance???

Added on 06th November 2018

In view of incoming elections, the Modi government wants to announce populistic schemes to win votes in the 2019 general elections. The lack of fiscal and financial discipline, and add to this the financially detrimental  policies like Demonetisation and faulty structure and implementation of GST  have badly hit the economy, GDP, and government revenue badly. A bad economy has gone to worse condition.

The public sector banks are in no position to fund the popular election policy of Modi government of 59 minute loan approval to SME sector. The  government now wants to steal money from the RBI, dig into its reserve and appropriate 1/3 of its reserves to recapitalize the banks to fund the BJP government's populist programmes on the eve of the elections in 2019.

To this end the government has applied never before used section 7 of RBI act.

It is one man's selfish desire to somehow come to power again at the cost of credibility and stability of RBI, the Indian Financial system and the Indian Economy.

Finance Ministry seeking to transfer a surplus of Rs 3.6 lakh crore, more than a third of the total Rs 9.59 lakh crore reserves of the central bank, to the government.
RBI has rejected the proposal. We need to see, what the Modi government future move would be.
The Ministry of Statistics reported growth of 6.7 percent, down from 7.1 percent for a year 
earlier. However, economists expect growth to be robust in the current financial year.

However, when we compare the growth for the period Jan-March 2017, we see finally see a growth of 0.7 % compared to last year for the same period. Finally, albeit slowly, we seem to be recovering from the impact of demonetisation.

But, in the coming months of this year, we may again see government policies which may adversely affect the economic growth.

This being the election year the government may formulate policies to appease people or at least a part of community. History tells us that, whenever a government formulates a populistic policy, it goes against the long term interests of the people of the country.

The Modi government has already spent more than 4,300 crores of tax payer’s money for publicity and the promotion of its various schemes. This is based on the information given by the government ministries in response to the RTI by people. This being election year, much more of the poor taxpayer’s money will go in projecting the government’s achievement.

The Amount of Money Modi Government Spent On Publicity Is Enough To Feed One Million Children For 3 Years


As if, the self created economic turmoil is not enough, the ruling BJP has been pushed to desperation, and frustration by the raising oil prices and adverse by poll results. We only have the prime minister to blame for this situation. He inherited a situation, when the oil prices were dropping and reached a position of almost 50% of the present rate.

He did not pass on the benefit of the bonanza to the people of the country, who were the rightful owners, nor did he create an oil fund to deposit the surplus. If he had done that, the surplus deposited in the account could have been deployed to create a buffer and subsidise to certain extent at least the burden on people.

Where did this huge money go??

How and where was the money deployed???

Was it used for Fiscal expenditure, or was it deployed for people welfare schemes???

Why was an oil surplus fund not setup???

Was the economic management so poor, that, the government did not envisage a future situation, where the USD could appreciate and as a fallout could bring a resultant increase in crude oil.

Silence is not an answer to every question. The government and more specifically the prime minister is accountable to the people of the country for every rupee earned and spent.

We of course don’t mind the prime minister and universities refusing to answer the RTI regarding the prime minister’s educational qualifications???

You cannot do the same with the public money.

The previous government had a galaxy of economic experts led prime minister, who himself was an economist or global repute. Plus, he had another great economist and global expert as head of planning commission. Another great economist as the Chief Economic Advisor and later as the RBI governor. To add to this he had a glittering panel of economists as members of Economic Advisory Council to the prime minister. All the people put together formulated an economic policy, that people of India found it good enough to give UPA and Dr. Singh another term.

Modi immediately after coming to power dismantled the Economic Advisory Council. He could have retained the council but the members. And suddenly, after there was a hue and cry among people on account of mismanagement of Demonetisation and GST, he again reinstated the Economic Advisory Council. He is now pressurising the members to spread false and tailored accounts of economic growth and employment. Even renowned economist Dr. Surjit Bhalla is being used as a tool by the prime minster furthering the cause of BJP. It may be very difficult for poor Dr. Bhalla to calm down his questioning conscious. A conscientious person like him may perhaps hardest days of professional career.

I do not claim to be a know all in economics or governance. People may correct me

wherever I might have gone wrong. I am open to dissents and disagreements and

debates. Please feel free to criticise and correct me.

Best Wishes,


Friday, April 20, 2018

On Women, PM Modi Served an Uncomfortable Message By IMF Boss 04-20

On Wmen, PM Modi Served an Uncomfortable Message By IMF Boss......

I think, the prime minister will have to learn to live with this kind of admonishing (direct & indirect) for some time to come).  

The world is justifiably outraged at the rapes of the minor girls happening so frequently in India. 

But more than, is the fact  that, the perpetrators  who belong to the BJP are not only getting protection from the BJP and BJP partnered governments, they are being celebrated by the people and supporters of the party with rallies using the national flag and shouting slogans like "Bharat Mata ki Jai" (Glory to the great Mother India).  

Their despicable act is being projected as a patriotic act.

No action is being taken by the party on the accused party members, no one has even been suspended by the party.

To top it all, the most sickening aspect of the whole episode is the whataboutery being indulged by the senior ministers of the Modi cabinet and the party spokesperson. Comparing this with the similar crimes in other state doesn't make this less heinous. And indirectly, you are telling the  world that the Indian prime minister is much more incompetent than you think, because there are such crimes in all the states of the country, which are equally or even more grievous than these.   

Plus, wherever such incidents happen, ultimate failure is that of the central government. Government is expected to be the ultimate controller and preventer of such crimes. It is expected to pass on required directives from time to time.

Like the naxal problem, which is coordinated by the central home ministry with various states, ministry of child and women welfare can coordinate the measure taken to protect the women by various governments and incentivise this action by rewarding and recognising the states implementing the policies for women protection, and in states with least rates of crime against women.

The entire thing needs to be taken out from a political perspective and linked to a human perspective. People should reject and condemn all caste and religion based comments on such crimes. 

A woman is gender, and hence, all narratives should be gender based. Reference to cast and religion tend to dilute the focus on this burning problem of the day. 

Concern at the international Fora a has started and this could add  multiply or even spread contagiously to other  larger international groups, which would be a very sad development for India internationally. 

When the Indian prime minister is ridiculed, the country automatically gets ridiculed. Damage control at the international level is long and arduous process, and definitively an avoidable activity. 

"Less of government and more of governance" was what Modi said when describing his governments priorities and working pattern.

What we have today is, 

Mess of government, and absolute mess of governance

A government whose priority is surviving from election to election and winning elections no matter what, is hardly expected to give great governance, and that is what is happening with the present government.

Political narratives all around are becoming hugely caste and religion based. The religious based narratives started by the Modi government are having boomerang effect in humongous proportions.

The moral abyss into which Indian politics has fallen is simply unfathomable. Those most responsible: Hindu extremists who value ideology over basic human decency, I ask of you, aren't there Asifa's in your family, if god forbid, if one them becomes a victim of a sadistic individual or group's lust, would you still talk of the ideology???? 

 Where is humanity?

where is humanism??

and where are the human values ???.

Don't these have any value in your scheme of things??? 

Humanism, Humanity and the Human Values are the tents on which the great Hindu religion is built.

Morally, you don't belong to the religion, you claim to protect.

In total emotional integration with every girl and women on this planet......


Saturday, March 24, 2018

The cook is the murderer concept 03-24

Image credit : Shyam's Imagination Library...

Can you see the man behind the curtain in the image..

This is the story of a time, almost a century ago, when it was a tradition to display aristocracy in the form of  the vehicles the people used, the ornamental attire the rich and the distinguished wore, and the ornaments that adorned the 'Rich and Famous' and the 'Movers and Shakers' of the town. Theatre was one of the places where this occurred most. 

To cater to the vanity of these people and to fleece them monetarily, a new category of people emerged. They were called "The Ushers". These people used to 'wait on' the rich people and do things for them, right from getting them tickets to guiding them to their seats, were some of the things these people (ushers) used to do.

Theatres in many countries could not aford have enough staff,  hence they allowed the ushers to work freelance in the theatres.

People after buying their tickets used to be helped by the ushers to find their seats.  These were freelance people, were not paid by the theatre management. They used to guide the customer, show them the way, and helped them to get to their seats. They used to be paid tips by the customers. It was not easy to ward off these people, they were very sticky, they would divert your attention from the movie and disturb your concentration, they would not leave you till they extracted a tip from you.

They were also helpful to the people who needed help, at the slight nudge, they would give you the synopsis of the movie. They would tell you the important scenes which needed careful watching and ones you could sleep through; they would also acquaint you with the exact time the movie would reach the climax, in fact, they would do everything to help you understand the movie better, but everything for a cost. They did succeed in making a respectable living from this profession.

What is the “Cook is the murderer concept”.

There was a suspense movie playing ins a theatre in a county in UK. A customer purchased the ticket, and was moving in, as usual, he was almost confronted by an usher. He tried to ward him off saying, he knew the place well and did not need help.

Usher: Sir, but the theatre has undergone revamp and the seating has been reorganized.

Customer: I know, I know, I have come here after the revamp.

Usher : But sir, you don’t know where the 'hallowed'  class is.

Customer : Don’t worry, I can make my way.

Usher : But sir….

By this time, the customer had reached his seat, he settled in his seat and said. “See, I know everything, I don’t need your help”.

The usher was angry and exasperated. He realised that he had wasted a lot of time with wrong customer. But still, he regained his composure, and said.

“Sir, there is still something, that I know, that you don’t”

The customer was curious and asked, “What is it??”

The usher coolly replied, “Sir, the cook is the murderer in this movie.”

With the suspense being destroyed, the customer angrily stomped out of the theatre. He complained to the local authorities about the menace of the ushers. Nothing could be done against them, instead the incident became famous.

After that, customers generally avoided the “cook is the murderer”situation. They quietly paid the tip to the ushers.

So, fleecing the customer, at the theatres is a practice that  has been there for more than century, and people have learned to live with it.

Please don't reveal this concept to anyone, let them visit this page and find out the same for themselves.

Best Wishes,