The Lodha Committee report on urgently needed reform of cricket administration in India will be released on January 4, 2016. It is expected to come down hard on the BCCI and the shocking way various cricket associations across the country have been allowed to administer the game, essentially without accountability and transparency.
But not all associations can be painted with the same brush. A few, like the Vidarbha Cricket Association and the Saurashtra Cricket Association, have husbanded their resources, and the profits made from the game, wisely and honestly, accumulated substantial reserves, built up excellent infrastructure, and nurtured cricket at the foundation level.
The attached report card for 2010-2013, which was placed in the public realm (released at a media conference and posted at a website) by the Karnakata State Cricket Association when Anil Kumble was President, is an example of accountability and transparency.
Sanjay Subrahmanyan, 47, is one of the youngest Carnatic musicians to be conferred the honour and title of Sangita Kalanidhi by The Music Academy Madras. In his acceptance speech after he was elected to preside over the 89th Annual Conference & Concerts of the Academy, the acclaimed vocalist speaks of his own social background and career as a professional musician. He then offers rare insights into what goes into the making of a Carnatic musician, what stages of development he or she must necessarily go through, the importance of interacting with, and learning from, masters of the art, and the need to adapt to changing times, and especially the digital age. A must-read for anyone interested in Indian classical music.
At a time when the challenge of communalism, hate politics, and engineered intolerance by the saffron brigade has come to the fore, all secular and democratic Indians can take heart from what has happened in Bihar.
“Incarnations: India in 50 Lives,” a BBC Radio 4 series by Professor Sunil Khilnani, author of “The Idea of India,” is an interesting and freely available series of historical talks aiming to link the past with the present. It “takes listeners on a journey from ancient India to the 21st century through the life stories of 50 of India’s major figures,” according to the series producers. “The series aims to explore how these ancient historical individuals have been ‘reincarnated’ in modern India and continue to impact and inspire life.”
Twenty-five of the 50 programmes have been broadcast so far and they can be downloaded from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/in/podcast/incarnations-india-in-50-lives/id993666528?mt=2
and also from the BBC Radio 4 site: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b05rptbv
“The Sri Lankan electorate has voted to reject polarisation and reinforce the process of democratisation…The new UNP government will have to quickly address a range of concerns from prosecution of corrupt politicians to providing a credible process to address war-time accountability.”
Together, these analytical articles provide a rounded perspective on the significance, potentialities, and hope held by the outcome of Sri Lanka’s 2015 general election.
A pdf of the whole Perspective page is attached.
1) “A vote for continuing change,” by Jayadeva Uyangoda, The Hindu, August 19, 2015, Page 11:
2)”Defeat of divisive politics,” by Ahilan Kadirgamar, The Hindu, August 19, 2015, Page 11:
Narendra Modi’s Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY), launched as a national mission for financial inclusion, “celebrates success on its website [http://www.pmjdy.gov.in], but thousands of Marys remain outside the banking system. There won’t be change unless the scheme alters both design and implementation.” Jayshree Venkatesan, a scholar at the Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy, looks into why the scheme has failed to deliver what was promised, on the basis of her field research:
Justice has been done — and has been seen to be done. An edifying message goes out to the cricket world that corruption will not be tolerated. Read the just-released Final Opinion and Order of the Justice Lodha Committee appointed by the Supreme Court of India with clear and powerful terms of reference.
As democratic India prepares to celebrate the 125th year of his birth, Dr B. R. Ambedkar stands taller than he ever did before. This is essentially because the deep-seated problems spotlighted by his life and work remain very much alive while the bold and often profound questions he raised about Indian society remain unanswered.
It is not without political significance that the Hindu Right is currently attempting, against the grain of history, to appropriate Dr Ambedkar’s legacy. In this situation, his uncompromising analysis of the caste system, of chaturvarnya and sanatana dharma, of notions of pollution, of unalterable or rigid social hierarchy, and of the implications of the hegemony of the shastras must be read, re-read, and made part of a national debate.
Dr Ambedkar’s outstanding intellectual contribution to re-imagining and building a new India free from the debilitating, indeed soul-destroying, system of caste as an institution of social oppression and discrimination incompatible with democracy must be ranked on a par with his justly celebrated contribution to the making of India’s Republican Constitution.
— from N Ram, Convocation speech, Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), May 12, 2015 (pdf file attached)
Victor Trumper (November 2, 1877-June 28, 1915) is one of the most romantic figures in the history of cricket. In his Jack Marsh History Lecture 2015 in Sydney, Gideon Haigh, writer and cricket historian, brings alive the wonder that was Trumper, offering in the process rare insights into the nuances of sports photography. (“When he came he opened the windows of the mind to a new vision of what batting could be…In composition and content, it is a very great photograph. It is both the first and last word in batting, insofar as batting consists of making instinctive what begins as a set of quite unnatural motions.”) Listen here to the lecture, in three parts, on YouTube; read the text, attached as a pdf file. George Beldam’s iconic picture of Trumper leaping out to drive is also attached:
Other resources on Trumper:
Cricinfo (statistical summary): http://www.espncricinfo.com/australia/content/player/7980.html
Official site: http://www.victortrumper.com/index.htm
Trumper & Don Bradman: http://www.cricketcountry.com/articles/victor-trumper-the-batsman-often-rated-above-don-bradman-19278
Select bibliography: http://www.victortrumper.com/biblio.htm
Australian sport’s most memorable photographs: http://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2014/mar/12/the-joy-of-six-australian-sports-most-memorable-photographs
Tariq Ali, writing in the London Review of Books, looks incisively into key issues that arise from the atrocity, the horrendous murder of 12 people at the headquarters of the French satirical magazine. A Guardian editorial and the New York Times Editor and Public Editor explain why the two newspapers with a global reach decided not to re-publish the Charlie Hebdo cartoons targeting the Prophet. The New York Times fields a debate on whether satirists can sometimes be ‘too provocative and outrageous’ and whether they ‘should hold themselves back’.
‘Short Cuts’ by Tariq Ali:
Guardian editorial view: ‘show solidarity but in your own voice’:
New York Times Editor Dean Baquet in fiery, touch-me-not Facebook attack on critic of newspaper’s decision not to reproduce Charlie Hebdo cartoons:
New York Times Public Editor Margaret Sullivan on how the decision not to re-publish the Charlie Hebdo cartoons was made:
‘When Satire Cuts Both Ways’:
‘Victims of the Terror Attacks in Paris’:
Hilary Mantel, one of the world’s finest novelists, talks to Tom Sutcliffe on BBC Radio 4 about her wonderful new collection of short stories, “The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher and Other Stories” (Kindle edition: Fourth Estate, 2014). Asked how she came to write the title story, she provides fascinating insights into a writer’s mind and the writing process. The title story can be read at the second link below:
BBC Radio 4 interview (audio):
“The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher,” title story (a Guardian exclusive):
Author’s reply to critics:
Damian Barr defends Mantel:
“Three days before the end…Beethoven had said, “*Plaudite*,* amici*,* comoedia finita est*” (“Applaud, friends, the comedy is over”)….Perhaps Beethoven was mocking his doctors; perhaps he was mocking the priest who administered the last rites; perhaps he was mocking himself. In any event, he was laughing about something as the curtain came down. He presumably did not know that, like the Emperor Augustus, he was about to undergo deification.”
When Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed his fans in a campaign-style appearance at New York’s Madison Square Garden, “he wasn’t just speaking to the people on this continent. In fact, the symbolism and rhetoric of this trip were carefully calibrated toward his Hindu nationalist base at home (and here, too)…The message: I may nod to tolerance and openness, but I’m really still with you.” A perceptive analysis by Meera Nair, who teaches writing at New York University: