Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Timbuktu – From the middle of civilization to a tiny dot in Saharan desert

We often debate about the pain, each civil war inflicts upon common people. What we often overlook during bloody conflicts (civil wars or revolutions) is its effects on urban infrastructure. Cities and factories built over decades were destroyed in matter of minutes by IEDs, C4s and shells. Business environment and stability created over a long period of time disappears within days.

In this Guardian article, you can read the tragic story of a city located in the heart of Africa (sands of Sahara on her northern border). As terrorists and Sahara are intruding in to this city – once famous for gold and trading – people are on their final effort to survive.


GoI should restructure India's quality control (rules, implementation and inspection) system in drugs manufacturing

"Drugs manufactured at the Indian plant of Canadian generics giant Apotex came under fire from regulatory experts this week after health concerns were sparked by the revelation that the company sold prescription drugs that it knew were defective."

This is not the first time a drug manufacturing facility located in India is coming under USFDA scanner.

I am very much concerned about two things,

1. How come only US-FDA is finding all these problems? What Indian regulatory bodies are doing? Aren't they responsible for inspections?
2. If this is the quality of drugs for export to US (which have one of the toughest inspection system), Canada and EU, then can anyone imagine the quality of drugs we are consuming?

Healthcare is one of the areas where India has strong growth potential. Many of our companies championed generics and mastered global delivery systems. But, continuous failure in quality check will force them out of biggest markets like US, Canada and EU. Not only that, other countries will also view Indian drugs with suspicion only.

The faster the government acts the better.


Photo Courtesy - USFDA

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Tigers on the run for life in Maharashtra

National Animal
"Preliminary findings of the 2014 tiger census and figures obtained through RTI of last year's state-level count reveal that more than more than 40 tigers have gone missing across three sanctuaries in the state as compared with 2010 estimates."

Tiger population reduced in,

Sahyadri Tiger Reserve - From 21 to 5
Navegaon-Nagzira Tiger Reserve - From 20 to 6
Bor National Sanctuary - From 12 to 4

"RTI reply admits that a tiger was poached near Ranbodi in Umred-Karhandla. Over 30 poachers have been arrested for tiger poaching, it says. The department admits that in 2013 alone, three tigers were poached but it has registered at least 15 offences of tiger poaching." - TOI

This tragedy in Maharashtra shows how vulnerable our tigers are; even after modestly successful ‘Project Tiger’. There is no point of constructing a building from one end while someone else is destructing it from another end. On the conservation front we need to be on high alert.. always.. Otherwise our national animal may once again reach the point of extinction.


"Independence of judiciary is non-negotiable" so as Individual's freedom

CJI “R M Lodha on Saturday said independence of judiciary is non-negotiable and whatever be the system for appointment of judges, the judiciary is strong enough to rebuff any kind of interference in its functioning." - TOI

With all due respect to CJI, I would like to add, individual's freedom is also non-negotiable. Courts can't sit on cases forever; trials should finish quickly and verdict should come fast. We can't have a system where under trials spend more time in jail than maximum punishment for the crime they allegedly committed. If any side is dodging the cases (no matter whether it is prosecutor, state or defendant) it is court's duty to take a strong view and put an end to those practices.

Why international agreement involving Indian companies are coming under Singapore or London courts and not under Indian courts? Is there are trust deficit?

Stakeholders of Indian Judicial system needs to introspect.


Image Courtesy: Wikipedia

Monday, September 8, 2014

Twist of Tale in Middle East

I wonder how fast the table is turning and winners are becoming losers.

Look at the situation in Iraq and Syria. US attacked Iraq and removed Hussain from power. This brought a government led by Shiites in Iraq, which of course not the end result expected by US allies in the region. However, unknowingly US did a great help to Iran by stabilizing Shiite led Iraqi government for some years.

Look at Libya. US led coalition was instrumental in bring in a regime change in Lebanon; however it only brought that country to chaos. In the end militias started street to street fight and now Egypt and UAE isleading a bombing campaign in Libya!!!

Syria is bigger and stronger than Libya, and US was not ready to go for war against Syria, especially foot on ground. However, opposition was not powerful enough to bring a regime change in Damascus. Wait and watch didn’t help; it only helped numerous new jihadist organization to prosper and overshadow west funded and supplied FSA. Finally IS emerged out of this leadership vacuum expanded rapidly through Syrian territories and then to Iraq. Possible fall of Erbil was too much for US to accommodate.

Thus comes the faulty plan of air strikes in Iraq while leaving the IS bases in Syria intact. After all attacking bases in Syria requires some kind of understanding with Assad government and it will be viewed as a support for Assad. Now came another twist in the tale, Iran is ready to help US, and Uncle Sam may be willing to take that help (of course anonymously). But this move indeed alarmed US allies from Saudi to Israel to Turkey!!!

And now US started striking IS bases in Iraq, but not the ones in Syria!!!