Saturday, January 31, 2009
Friday, January 30, 2009
Coming Lok Sabha elections look more of a star parade… thoda filmy… thoda sporty!
Thursday, January 29, 2009
The shop owners didn’t want to disturb the existing English signage… but were probably afraid that a small Marathi signage can draw MNS ire… so the decided to have 2 Marathi Logos to ‘sandwich’ the English one!
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
Sunday, January 25, 2009
For those who missed the speech… here is a six part series courtesy youtube…
Saturday, January 24, 2009
Then her Gujarati neighbour taught her a trick that worked wonders. It was a method that was “foolproof”. And what was that? Speak to the Taxiwallah in MARATHI… Surprisingly, the trick worked for the entire month!
3M is amused that a Gujarati advised a Marathi Manoos about using the T-factor to one's advantage!
Friday, January 23, 2009
Let’s not forget that these are the only memories left of the Sindhi & Punjabi victims of partition with them… If you have support of a wide section of Marathi youth don’t waste it on such petty matters… get into the act for which you were created ‘Maharashtra Navnirman’- Building a new Maharashtra!
Thursday, January 22, 2009
So let us try to understand how this mess was created in the first place. In 1921, Indian National Congress passed a resolution for linguistic states as the geographical limits of provinces in British India were made ‘without any logic’. Belgaum was then part of Bombay Presidency, the most prosperous province at that time, which covered parts of today’s Sindh, Gujarat, Western Maharashtra and Northwestern Karnataka. In 1948, Belgaum City Council (BCC) passed a resolution that it wanted to be a part of the proposed Marathi speaking state. Later in 1953, Fazil Ali Commission was appointed by Pandit Nehru to decide on the linguistic states which formed the basis for the States Reorganisation Act 1956. The commission’s methodology was based on the principle that a district should be taken as a unit to decide which linguistic state should it be included and not taluka or village. Only if a taluka within a district had 70% people speaking other language, it would be transferred to the neighbouring state. This flawed methodology is the foundation of the current Maharashtra-Karnataka border dispute… popularly referred to as “Belgaum Border Dispute”. Surprisingly, this ‘formula’ was overruled by the commission itself in all cases expect Belgaum!
In 3 areas in India, “border disputes” became political movements where local people created 'seperatist' parties and won elections on the issue… Bhensdehi & Saunsai in Madhya Pradesh wanted to merge with Maharashtra, Kasargod area in Kerala wanted to merge with Karnataka and the Marathi speaking areas of Karnataka wanted to be a part of Maharashtra. The first two political movements died down in course of time. But Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti (MES) had put up a brave and politically successful fight for 50 years till it became a victim of factionalism in 2005. At its peak it was able to send 9 MLAs to the Karnataka Assembly… currently the tally is zero!
In 1966 on insistence of Maharashtra Government, the Indian Government appointed one-man Commission under the Chief Justice Meherchand Mahajan to resolve the issue. The Mahajan Commission’s scope was also included the Karnataka-Kerala border dispute. Sadly the commission decided to use different yardsticks for the two disputes. The report said that Kasargod area should be given to Karnataka as ‘there were more Kannada students (not speakers!) than Malayalam students’. It had also considered the win of a Kannada candidate in Kasaragod as a reason for merger with Karnataka. However, in case of Belgaum, it didn't take into account, the number of Marathi-medium schools and their students, or the winning streak of MES in elections. Maharashtra Government further argued that 89% of octroi paid in Belgaum was for goods from Maharashtra indicating that economic links of the city were with Maharashtra instead of Karnataka. Even though the 1961 census showed that Belgaum city and surrounding areas had Marathi majority, the commission insisted Belgaum will not be handed over to Maharashtra because it was a ‘cosmopolitan city’. 3M fails to understand why a ‘cosmopolitan city’ should be given to Karnataka when Kannadiga population half that of Marathis!
Maharashtra laid claim to over 800 villages in Karnataka which lay in the Bidar, Belgaum and North Kanara districts and was ready to handover 250 odd villages which had Kannada majority. In sum, Karnataka was to lose 4000 sq kms of land (same size as Mumbai Metropolitan Region). The commission ensured that Karnataka does not lose any land in the deal. Obviously, Maharashtra and Kerala Governments rejected the report… while Karnataka government insisted that the report be implemented or status quo be maintained.
At various points of time, Belgaum, Nipani & Khanapur Municipalities and almost all affected Gram Panchyats and Taluka Panchayats have passed resolutions for merger with Maharashtra. In 2005, when BCC passed a resolution requesting the Indian and Karnataka Governments on transfer the city to Maharashtra, Karnataka Government decided to dissolve the council to quell the protest. To ensure Kannadiga domination on the city, the Karnataka Government decided to conduct the winter session of the Karnataka Assembly in Belgaum. This was considered as ‘rubbing salt into wounds’ by the Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti, who decided to mobilise protest through Maha-melava (Grand Gathering) by inviting prominent Marathi politicians in January 2008. R R Patil’s (the then Dy CM of Maharashtra) speech on this occasion was strongly condemned in the ongoing assembly session. This year’s Maha-melava was banned by the Karnataka Government leading to large scale violence in different parts of Maharashtra and Karnataka. To further ‘kannadise’ the city, the government plans to rename it ‘Belgavi’ and lay the foundation stone of ‘Suvarna Soudha’ – a building to house the winter assembly session. During the current delimitation process, care has been taken to ensure Marathi votes are divided. The administration has also ensured that no Marathi speaking official is appointed in the border areas in any central or state government agencies to avoid any bias towards Marathi speaking population. State sponsored Marathi schools are denied Marathi teachers and are provide Kannada teachers instead. During H D Devegowda’s regime some Kannadiga radicals (Kannada Cheluvarigara Sangha) had even suggested that the government should set up industries in Belgaum area so that Kanndigas can be migrated there to alter the demographics… almost sounds like Chinese Government policy on Tibet!
Hutatma Chowk in Mumbai was raised in memory of 105 people who laid down their lives for a ‘Samyukta Maharashtra’… of which 5 were from the disputed Belgaum region! Over the last 6 decades, the Belgaum border dispute has claimed many lives – Marathi as well as Kannadiga. Vijay More, the Belgaum mayor, was beaten up by Karnataka Raksha Vedike mob giving him a fractured arm in 2005!
In 2005, Maharashtra Government decided to reopen the issue through negotiation but was cold shouldered by the Karnataka Government. So in March 2006, Maharashtra Government filed a petition in Supreme Court for resolution of the problem. According to Article 3 of Indian Constitution, if the disputed territory has to be handed over to Maharashtra, the Karnataka Assembly will have to pass such a resolution… which is next to impossible! Probably politicians are not really interested in solving the dispute as it gives them an excuse to do some rabble rousing… but how long can both the states continue to bleed?
Ideally, a fair commission should be instituted to ensure that the border dispute is resolved at the earliest and can even include a referendum in the disputed area to have a full and final settlement between the ‘warring states’!
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Monday, January 19, 2009
Prati Kolhapur can be considered as a show of strength by Vinay Kore, Minister for renewable energy in the current Maharashtra Government (Ranked 18th in MahaPol Powerlist Jan 09). This was an attempt to expand his powerbase beyond South Maharashtra, where his party Jana Surajya Shakti is very powerful. His plan includes bringing together estimated 4.5 Lac Kolhapuris from Mumbai to build a ‘Kolhapur Bhavan’ in the city. 3M won’t be surprised if his party fields a few candidates in Mumbai in the coming elections… probably after having a tie-up with Raj Thackeray’s MNS. Thackeray incidentally gave a fiery speech from the ‘Prati Kolhapur’ dias in support of Vinay Kore.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Saturday, January 17, 2009
Makar Sankrati has lost its charm in the Maximum city… where have all the kites gone? Probably the kids are content with video games… or are the high rises blocking all the wind?
3M remembers that as a kid spending the entire day and night on the building terrace on Makar Sankrant Day was a norm… especially in Mumbai’s Marathi and Gujarati dominated areas, where used Pej (Kite fites) between neighbouring societies were the highlight of the season… So, you started off as a Firki-holder to an elder kid and then graduated to become a ‘kite runner’ and finally were “mature enough” to fly the kite… But these days you hardly see enough kites in the sky… Sob… Sob..
So for the good old… here is a glossary of Mumbai eestyle kite flying words put together by 3M… enjoy!
Badav – To pull the kite string so that it rises to a higher altitude
Bhardor – A cut kite with a very long string... a prized possession for the kite runner!
Chaap – The lift given to the kite by a person (other than the kite flyer) by catching it in both his hands
Chand – Kites from Bhendi Bazaar which have a crescent and star symbol
Dheel – To let the kite fly in strong wind by simply releasing the Manja from the Firki
Firki – The spindle on which the manja (String) is wound
Gond – The gum used to resurrect damaged kites
Hool – Scaring off other kites by making aggressive gestures
Kauvva – A large kite
Kandeel – The candle lamp that is attached to the kites at night to create a spectacle.
Kani – A special thread formation that is used to tie the kite to the string. The ‘zero-zero’ kani is for beginners and the evolved ones would know by just looking at the kite that it ‘needs a two-one kani’
Kaipoche – The word that everyone on your terrace screams when you cut a competitor… To be repeated at least 3 times!
Manja - The string that is used to fly the kit is coated with fine glass powder so that you can cut the strings of other kites. ‘Ghaslet Manja’ used to be top of the pops till ‘Chinese Manja’ took over!
Patang – A regular sized kite
Readers are free to add their bit to the glossary…
Friday, January 16, 2009
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Monday, January 12, 2009
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Today 3M had gone to Mahul Koliwada with like minded friends to see these pink beauties. The group leader had arranged for a fishing boat to take us into the mangroves where the birds are currently residing. We were told that after 26/11, you have to carry a photo copy of your identification proof to get entry into the Mahul Creek. Another group from Photographic Society of India was also present with “all the requisite permissions”. Finally, no one was allowed in the creek due to “security reason”… a classic case of bolting the stable doors after the horses have ran away!
3M was amused that two policemen with lathis were “protecting” the jetty from potential foreign terrorist!
But for those who may not be very keen on bird watching, Mahul Koliwada has another surprise in store… It is hosting a Koli Festival during the “Mumbai Festival” at the end of this month… so expect a lot of song and dance accompanied by fish fry!
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Friday, January 9, 2009
Thursday, January 8, 2009
One of 3M’s acquaintances was once posted in Siliguri (West Bengal) and his wife faced a similar problem. But by the time they shifted back to Mumbai in 3 years, she was not only conversant in Bengali but also learnt Rabindra Sangeet. That is called “assimilation”!
When a person migrates, he weighs the pluses and minuses before taking the leap. Adjusting to local language/ culture is part of the migrant’s life. And this happens all over the world. Expecting the locals to adjust to the migrants… it happens only in Maharashtra!
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Hindustan Times claims that Drushti, First Marathi Audio Book is a roaring success! But 3M fails to understand how is it different from Pu La and Va Pu Kale Audio Cassettes?
In the mean time, a blog called 'Bolti Pustake' is putting free Marathi Audio Books online!
Monday, January 5, 2009
Sunday, January 4, 2009
“Forgive Kasab as he is only 21 and has been brainwashed. We should try to help him come back to normal”
No… this is not a statement made by a Pakistani official or cleric… But by Hemant Karkare’s daughter! During an interview on IBN-Lokmat today, Mrs. Karkare revealed a lot of her own views on a variety of issue in addition her daughter’s thoughts. The grit and determination shown by that woman was amazing. 'We need 1000 more Karkares in India today!'
BTW is Pakistan listening?
Saturday, January 3, 2009
Friday, January 2, 2009
Thursday, January 1, 2009
1. Sharad Pawar (68) NCP
2. Bal Thackeray (82) SS
3. Ashok Chavan (50) INC
4. Raj Thackeray (39) MNS
5. Gopinath Munde (59) BJP
6. Narayan Rane (56) INC
7. Chhagan Bhujbal (60) NCP
8. Ajitdada Pawar (49) NCP
9. Uddhav Thackeray (47) SS
10. Vilasrao Deshmukh (63) INC
11. R R Patil (52) NCP
12. Nitin Gadkari (60) BJP
13. Praful Patel (53) NCP
14. Ramdas Athavale (55) RPI+
15. Prakash Ambedkar (51) RPI+
16. Murli Deora (71) INC
17. Gurudas Kamat (51) INC
18. Vinay Kore (37) JSS
19. Sushilkumar Shinde (66) INC
20. Manohar Joshi (71) SS
21. Vijaysingh Mohite Patil (64) NCP
22. Balasaheb Vikhe-Patil (76) INC
23. Vinod Tawde (45) BJP
24. Jayant Patil (46) NCP
25. N D Patil (78) PWP
BJP – Bharatiya Janata Party
INC – Indian National Congress
JSS – Jana Surajya Shakti
MNS – Maharashtra Navanirman Sena
NCP – Nationalist Congress Party
PWP – Peasants & Workers Party (Shetkari Kamgar Paksha)
RPI+ – Republican Party of India (any faction)
SS – Shiv Sena
To understand the methodology used for the ranking click here.
The figure in bracket indicates the age of the politician.
Analysis of the MahaPol Top 25 Powerlist (Jan 09)
Ministers in the current Central Government: 4
Ministers in the current Maharashtra Government: 6
Ex/ Current Chief Ministers: 5
Sugar Barons: 10 (Top 3 barons are present in the list)
- Mumbai: 9 (And people say Mumbai is neglected!)
- Konkan (Beyond MMR): 1 (Rane is the lone Konkani)
- Western Maharashtra: 10 (This region still dictates!)
- Marathwada: 3 (Representation is low in quantity but high in quality)
- Vidarbha: 2 (Very poor representation. There should have been 6 Vidarbhites in this list.)
Party wise breakup
- Indian National Congress: 7
- Nationalist Congress Party: 7
- Bharatiya Janta Party: 3
- Shiv Sena: 3
- Republican Party of India (All factions): 2
- Maharashtra Navanirman Sena: 1
- Jana Surajya Shakti: 1
Caste wise break up
- Maratha: 11
- Brahman: 3
- Kayastha: 3
- OBC: 2
- Scheduled Caste: 2
- Scheduled Tribe: 2
- Non Marathi: 2
Some interesting things to note:
- NCP emerges as the strongest party with Sharad Pawar being the uncrowned king.
- No woman makes it to the top 25… glass ceiling in politics!
- Balasaheb Thackeray is the oldest at 82
- Vinay Kore is the youngest at 37
- 3 Thackerays make it to the ‘Top 10 Hall of Fame’ without contesting a single election... Remote control zindabad!
- Besides the Thackerays, others who have never been ministers in any government are Ambedkar, Kamat & Tawde.
- Not a single Muslim leader makes it to the top 25 – Even Antulay with his ‘Green Card’ falls short.
- And above all... Had this list been made a month ago... Ashok Chavan would not have featured in it!
MahaPol can be directly contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org