He went on to tell me that even if he wanted to learn Marathi there was no way of doing so as there are no “Marathi speaking classes” anywhere… Now Pune University has decided to “answer his prayers”!
Wednesday, December 31, 2008
He went on to tell me that even if he wanted to learn Marathi there was no way of doing so as there are no “Marathi speaking classes” anywhere… Now Pune University has decided to “answer his prayers”!
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
At the outset, let me thank BharGo for giving me a chance to contribute to this wonderful blog. It will be my earnest attempt to help you understand the power shifts in Maharashtra Politics – some gradual and some very dramatic.
The MahaPol Powerlist ranking will take into consideration five key parameters for evaluation. Each of these parameters has sub-elements which contribute to the overall ranking. They are as follows -
1. Electoral clout
........a. Number of elected representatives of his/ her– MPs and MLAs
........b. % of vote in the last elections that his/ her party was able to garner
2. Clout within the Party
........a. His/ her Relationship with the Party Top boss (in case the person is not heading the party)
........b. His/ her say in the party decision making process
........c. His/ her base in the party – especially grassroot level
........a. Whether his party is in power in the state
........b. The portfolio that he handles as a minister
........c. Number of local bodies (Municipalities, Zilla Parishads, Gram Panchayats etc) where his party is in power
4. Social Clout
........a. Major Cooperatives (Including APMCs) under control of his party
........b. Support of Lobbies – Sugar, Workers unions, Businessmen etc
........c. Organisational base – Ability to mobilize masses irrespective of the party
........d. Intelligentsia support – Having favourable relationship with intellectuals from different fields like arts, social service etc
........e. His/ Her Caste – Being a Maratha has an added advantage in large parts of the state.
........f. Media Relationship – Does the politician have favourable relationship with TV and Press journalists? Does he have news value?
........g. Public Image – public perception in the minds of voters in Maharashtra
........h. Nuisance Value – Higher the nuisance value higher is the importance attached
........i. Money Power – Ability to mobilize funds for the party
........j. National Clout – Does the politician have a clout at national level?
5. Personal Capability
........a. Intellectual prowess
........b. Administrative capability
........c. Global perspective on issues
Some of the parameters are quantitative and some are qualitative and hence no score will be given to each politician. MahaPol will just publish relative ranking.
So jump on to the MahaPol Express and enjoy the ride!
Monday, December 29, 2008
Sunday, December 28, 2008
"All these stateless actors are causing a problem. "
"Well, they have created a parallel industry of themselves without the locals."
"See, they have disproportionate influence over the locals as compared to the state actors"
"But can they do anything without local support?"
"True, but that local set is an exclusivist set and does not represent the view of the true local majority"
"How would you know that?"
"We are in touch with the ground realities"
"They run the industry all by themselves. Their fund sources are from all over the world and they have sympathizers all over the world. So, many of their actions find sanction everywhere. They are a big hit, even though I hate to admit it..."
"Any specific person?"
"Oh yes. Amitabh Bachahan. He is one of the biggest stateless actors." said Raj Thackeray signing off...
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Though MahaPol will contribute his views once in a while, his main contribution will be ‘MahaPol Power List’. Starting January 2009, he will publish the ‘Power List’ of the top 25 politicians in Maharashtra on the first of every month. Track the winners and losers in the “Snakes and Ladders” game of Maharashtra’s Politics… month on month!
Friday, December 26, 2008
He also stressed on a point that 3M had made earlier on this blog – shrinking electoral clout of Marathi Manoos in Maharashtra due to delimitation. He gave an example of Kolhapur District where the assembly seats have shrunk from 11 to 9. These 2 seats have been shifted to Mumbai Metropolitan Region… where immigrants will decide the fate of the politicians. “No wonder these national parties are going in for minority appeasement.”
Obviously, if Congress-NCP & BJP-SS combines are not going to assuage the fear of Marathi Manoos – real and imaginary, the coming elections will see Raj grabbing a sizeable chunk of the votes!
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Wanted to recreate the same Xmas magic for my 3 year old daughter. Wasn’t sure if the Santa still sits at Akbarallys… So we decided to go to its modern day equivalent – INORBIT! We were sure that a few Santas would be floating around in the mall. The atrium had a show where kids and parents were dancing away to the latest Bollywood Punjabi number. 3M did not want to "waste time on such silly things” as Santa on Xmas was far more important. So 3M and MMW lugged their MMB (MarathMoli Babe) from Hypercity to Shopper’s Stop and from Spencer’s to Lifestyle… but Santa was nowhere to be seen! When we asked around…
“He was just here…”
“Do check at the kids’ outlets on the first floor…”
“Must have gone for a peeeee break… ;-)”
Finally, the MM family decided to have some grub at the food court… lo and behold… there he was… at the entrance of the “peri peri” restaurant… but MMB was not amused… “He is not fat”… “He is wearing a mask”… “There are no gifts with him”… “He is not a real Santa”… no “shake hands”... no "photo-ops"!
Finally MMB found solace in the Punjabi Music in the atrium… Santa nahi to Santa-Banta music hi sahi!
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
3M was amused to see that Thackeray agreed that he is “Marathi First” and had to take up the Hindutva issue for the “larger benefit of India”... political compulsions!
The main aim of this interview was to emphasise that he was in good health and that Shiv Sena was in the “safe hands” of Uddhav. He ended the interview with a impassioned plea to the Marathi Janta to bring Shiv Sena back in power. The campaign for the assembly elections next year has started in right earnest.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
3M is surprised that BJP and Shabana Azmi were on the same side of the political divide!
Monday, December 22, 2008
3M finds it hard to believe that even in these recessionary times, people have money to spend of such whims… Also this is the first time 3M has seen a Batu (the boy undergoing thread ceremony) wearing a turban… Punjabification of Indian ceremonies!
Image Courtesy - Maharashtra Times
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Saturday, December 20, 2008
SFM, Sun network's Radio Channel, understands the need to get regional in their content. Their Pune station emphasise more on Marathi... something that the more "metroized" radio station have failed to understand!
3M wonders that the Marathi population is Mumbai Metropolitan Region is more than 3 times the Marathi population in Pune... enough potential for SFM to launch a Marathi FM channel in Mumbai. Given the sucess of Marathi TV channels, we can expect a decent response.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Thursday, December 18, 2008
But what made Antulay, a politician not known to suffer from a foot-in-the-mouth syndrome, make such a statement? 3M guesses that the octogenarian politician does not have the guarantee that he will get the Congress ticket in the next general elections. After this controversy, he knows that Congress can’t throw him out or deny a ticket due to the fear of loosing the Muslim vote.
Surprisingly, Antulay never played the “Muslim Card” in his heydays!
In 2002, 3M attended a skiing course at Auli in Uttaranchal. For duration of one week, a bunch of 30 people bonded so well that we created a yahoogroup -Auli02. As 95% of the guys and gals were from either Mumbai or Delhi, the antaksharis would be between “Mumbaikars” and “Delhiwallas”.
In one of the emails, Rajat, a Delhiwalla with Bengali DNA, wrote about a typical Delhiwalla – His traits, habits etc. Then he asked what is a typical Mumbaikar like? 3M’s response was -
“Sharda Dwivedi, a prominent urban historian, was the first to come up with the theory that Mumbai is actually an amalgamation of smaller cities that coexist next to each other... Hence there is no typical Mumbaikar... but there will be a typical ‘Sandra from Bandra’...
or a ‘Mites Sa from Ghatkopar’...
‘Amit Joshi from Dadar’....
‘Huzefa Pipermitwala from Byculla’...
‘Laxmi Srinivasan from Matunga’...
‘Kripashanker Pandey from the Jogeshwari cowshed’...
‘Pakya Dada from Dharavi’...
‘Mrs. Pam "Hep" Chopra from Lokhandwala Complex’ (A touch of Delhi here)...
‘Shri. Prabhakar Ratnakar Bhambhurde (Shiv Sena Shakha Pramukh) from Kalyan’...
‘Harish Agarwal from Kalbadevi’...
‘Harry Kewalramani from Ulhasnagar’...
‘Kantibhai from Dalal Street’...
‘Kuttishankaran UnniKrishnan from Chembur’
and above all ‘Apro Boman Daruwalla from Khushrow Baug’... for a non Mumbaikar all this wud probably not make sense...
BTW Bongs don't exist in Mumbai... they appear out of thin air during durga puja at the "Dadar Shivaji Park Sorbojanin Durga Pooja Utsab"... and then they just disappear for a year...
Mumbai is like a mini India... Just as you do not have something called a Typical Indian... U can’t have a Typical Mumbaikar”
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
If Dr. B N Sharga, one of Indira Gandhi's relatives, is to be believed, she comes from a family of Marathi Brahmans who migrated from Maharashtra in the 14th Century to Kashmir! That makes Sonia "Maharashtrachi Soonbai"?
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
3M wishes JMCCI as the best for their endeavour… May their tribes increase!
Monday, December 15, 2008
Sunday, December 14, 2008
The pleas of the महाराष्ट्र नाभिक महासंघ (Maharashtra Barbers’ Grand Council) have fallen on deaf ears of the State Government. In retaliation, all the Hair Cutting Salons in Nagpur have “banned” the entry of politicians during the forthcoming Nagpur Assembly session. And to rub it in, each salon is actually carry a “no entry” notice board…
Sau sonar ki… Ek NAYEE ki… Hyuk... Hyuk...
Saturday, December 13, 2008
3M would like to differ on two of his statements –
NN: While it lay in the heart of Maharashtra, it had Gujarati as well as Marathi residents, and many other linguistic communities.
3M: This give the impression that Gujarati and Marathi residents were equal in number… according to the 1951 census Marathis were 51% and Gujratis were 18% in the city of Mumbai… if you consider the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (that concept dint exist then) then the balance tilts in favour of Marathis even further! Over the year the share of the Hindi speakers has increased while those of others have reduced in Mumbai. Even today Marathis are the single largest linguistic group in Mumbai at around 40%. Nilekani might be surprised that the percentage of Kannadigas in Bangalore is lesser than percentage of Marathis in Mumbai… case in point to try his experiment in his home state first… 3M is sure Karnataka Rakshan Vedike will give him the necessary support!
NN: Jawaharlal Nehru proposed that Bombay become a separate, bilingual area, but the rioting and protests that ensued forced him to back down, and the city became part of Maharashtra. Since then, Indian cities have been passive and subordinate to the state governments.
3M: C’mon… Samyukta Maharashtra Chalwal led to urban India being a subordinate to state governments… you are stretching it a bit too far! BTW, Nehru wanted the state of Bombay to be bilingual (suggested name was “Mahagujarat”) not the city.
3M respects Nilekani for his achievements and contribution to India but requests him to not single out Mumbai… had he given a case of at least one more city in India to make his point the article would not have an anti-Marathi flavour! Please make a pan Indian pitch of "decentralization of power to urban India" and 3M will support you.
In the mean time Maharashtra Times, the Marathi daily from the TOI stable carries exactly the opposite view… enjoy!
Friday, December 12, 2008
The story starts after gulf war when Indian satellite TV market was born with Star TV… SUN TV was the first “regional language” channel to be launched. Since then it has managed to innovate and hence dominate the Tamil psyche… The Telugu, Malayalam & Kannada channels followed soon. The speakers of languages like Marathi, Gujarati, Bengali, Oriya and Punjabi were already exposed to Hindi channels. When channels in these languages final appeared at the turn of the century, their content was not as glitzy as the Hindi channels leading to poor viewership numbers. It is only in the last 3 years that quality of content in the Marathi & Bengali channels has improved drastically. Given the current trend, the share of revenue of the Marathi & Bengali channels is sure to improve over the next 4-5 years. 3M is surprised that the DNA report fails to speak about Gujarati, Punjabi & Oriya channels!
BTW Karnatique has given the “Languages ordered by decreasing order of speaker population” which is wrong… the correct order is Bengali, Telugu, Marathi, Tamil, Gujarati, Kannada, Malayalam, Oriya & Punjabi.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
MAXIMUM CITY - Rescue Bombay by Narendra Nair
Images of Hemant Karkare donning what turned out to be ineffective headgear and bulletproof vest, preparatory to heading out to confront the terrorists at the Cama hospital, filled us with quiet pride. Smiling grimly, his body language indicated the confidence to go into the thick of battle and appreciation of the dangers ahead. Little did we know he would be gunned down minutes later. In consequence, those images have now become among the most heart-rending in recent memory. The BJP, the Senas and fanatic Hindu outfits who hailed him as a hero when hunting down Muslim terror outfits called him a traitor and other vicious names when he caught Hindus engaged in similar acts. The prospect of such brazenly bigoted people getting control of the country in the next election is scary in the extreme. So, before we sink once more into our standard attitude of apathy, there is one thing we must do. Urgently. Rescue Bombay city, the only international city we have in this country.
Bombay was, like the United States of America, made by migrants and achieved its international status on that account. Right now, Mumbai is one big slum; a narrow parochial identity has been forced upon it. Attempts to reduce it to just another linguistic region, where even vehicle number-plates are illegally and dangerously in Marathi — think how hard they are to decipher quickly in a hit and-run — are to belittle the history of this great city and to negate the contribution of its vast migrant army. It is the commercial capital of India, not just of Maharashtra alone. The city should therefore without delay be centrally administered, as many have suggested. The best Indian brains should be requisitioned to run this city and any political interference should be resisted and rebuffed as emphatically as possible. The prima donna Union home minister Shivraj Patil quit, inanely declaring, “It is a great burden off my shoulders”. Wrong. It is a great burden off our shoulders. As for Maharashtra’s comic — and thankfully former — deputy chief minister R R Patil, he casually ignored multiple warnings of terrorist attacks. When the warnings came true, he called the murder of innocents nothing more than a minor event inevitable to any big city. For that remark alone he should be ostracised. As for Bombay, let us hope that narrow-minded linguistic fanaticism will not hasten the obituary of what was once a great city.
3M cant miss the YOU-BLOODY-GHATIS-CANT-RULE-BOMBAY attitude in this editorial! There is no denying that the city is going to the dogs... but this anti-marathi manoos attitude is going to add to the problems... 3M considers this viewpoint as much parochial as the self-appointed-guardians-of-Marathi-asmita!
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
During the post-swearing in ceremony press conference when Ashok Chavhan was unable to respond to a query, his deputy Chhagan Bhujbal took over the mike and gave a credible response… 3M is in no doubt who is the big brother in the coalition and the post assembly elections CM might be a NCP man… with or without Congress support!
Pawar is Power... rest dont matter!
Monday, December 8, 2008
This is the YOU-BLOODY-GHATIS-CANT-RULE-BOMBAY syndrome that a section of the “elite Bombayites” suffers from!
Sunday, December 7, 2008
Rang Rasiya, a movie on the life and times of Raja Ravi Verma, the legendary painter will be releasing soon… On seeing the promos, some old memories jumped out from a cobweb ridden corner of my mind.
As a kid I used to wonder… “What language the gods must be speaking between themselves?”… Sanskrit the ancient language… or Hindi coz Himalayas are in the north… then how do they understand my pleas in Marathi?
My kiddie logic was that the best parameter to judge was to observe the clothes they wear… Most of the male Gods wore a dhotar (dhoti)… but that is what my Marathi Grandpa as well as the doodhwala bhaiyya used to wear… very confusing! But the goddesses were a clear give away… from Sita to Parvati to Durga, they all wore NavWari Sadees (Nine yards Kashta style Marathi Sarees)… Obviously GODS MUST BE MARATHI! ;-)))
It was only in my teens that I realized that these iconic images that I saw in every second home across India were creations of Raja Ravi Verma… and the fact that his muse was a Marathi lady ensured that all his goddesses “imitated” her dressing style. He undoubtedly changed the image of divinity in every Hindu’s mind for perpetuity!
Is there so much outrage against terror this time because the Mumbai Gliteratti was a victim? Usually Hoi Polloi are killed in terror attacks... when the creme de la creme of the society is hurt, media howls!
Saturday, December 6, 2008
But Pranab Mukherjee and A K Anthony were in Mumbai for past few days to decide who will be the next CM of Maharashtra... To "democratically elect" high command's choice for the gaddi!
Even after the seething anger against the political class that can be seen across the country, these "public servants" do not get any wiser... it happens only in India!
Friday, December 5, 2008
If Sonia agrees to Rane's demand, it will be "Bhagwa over Mantralaya"... coz Rane and Bhujbal (NCP's most likely candidate for Dy CM) are both ex-Shivsainiks...
3M predicts that Sushilkumar Shinde will be the "Mandoli" CM!
Thursday, December 4, 2008
On 7th December 2008 this petition will be attempted to be presented to the Prime Minister of India. Till 7th December, endeavour is to collect at least 1 million signatures. Probably such mass need may stir the administration to take visible and needful action. Please sign and forward to as many people known to you as possible.
Dear Mr. Prime minister
I am a typical mouse from Mumbai. In the local train compartment which has capacity of 100 persons, I travel with 500 more mouse. Mouse at least squeak but we don't even do that.
Today I heard your speech. In which you said 'NO BODY WOULD BE SPARED'. I would like to remind you that fourteen years has passed since serial bomb blast in Mumbai took place. Dawood was the main conspirator. Till today he is not caught. All our bolywood actors, our builders, our Gutka king meets him but your Government can not catch him.. Reason is simple; all your ministers are hand in glove with him. If any attempt is made to catch him everybody will be exposed. Your statement 'NOBODY WOULD BE SPARED' is nothing but a cruel joke on this unfortunate people of
Enough is enough. As such after seeing terrorist attack carried out by
about a dozen young boys I realize that if same thing continues days are not away when terrorist will attack by air, destroy our nuclear reactor and there will be one more
We the people are left with only one mantra. Womb to Bomb to Tomb. You promised Mumbaikar Shanghai what you have given us is Jalianwala Baug.
Today only your home minister resigned. What took you so long to kick out this HM? Only reason was that he was loyal to Gandhi family. Loyalty to Gandhi family is more important than blood of innocent people, isn't it?
I am born and bought up in Mumbai for last fifty eight years. Believe me corruption in Maharashtra is worse than that in
Recently I had to purchase house in Mumbai. I met about two dozen builders. Everybody wanted about 30% in black. A common person like me knows this and with all your intelligent agency & CBI you and your finance minister are not aware of it. Where all the black money goes? To the underworld isn't it? Our politicians take help of these goondas to vacate people by force. I myself was victim of it. If you have time please come to me, I will tell you everything.
If this has been land of fools, idiots then I would not have ever cared to write you this letter. Just see the tragedy, on one side we are reaching moon, people are so intelligent and on other side you politician has converted nectar into deadly poison. I am everything Hindu, Muslim,Christian, Schedule caste, OBC, Muslim OBC, Christian Schedule caste, Creamy Schedule caste only what I am not is INDIAN. You politician have raped every part of mother
Take example of former president Abdul Kalam. Such a intelligent person, such a fine human being. You politician didn't even spare him. Your party along with opposition joined the hands, because politician feels they are supreme and there is no place for good person.
Dear Mr Prime minister you are one of the most intelligent person, most learned person. Just wake up, be a real SARDAR. First and foremost expose all selfish politician. Ask Swiss bank to give name of all Indian account holder. Give reins of CBI to independent agency. Let them find wolf among us. There will be political upheaval but that will better than dance of death which we are witnessing every day. Just give us ambient where we can work honestly and without fear. Let there be rule of law. Everything else will be taken care of.
Choice is yours Mr. Prime Minister. Do you want to be lead by one person or you want to lead the nation of 100 Crore people?
Prakash B. Bajaj
Chandralok 'A" Wing, Flat No 104
Mumbai 400 036
Let's evaluate the candidates in the fray...
Prithviraj Chavhan (Not Chauhan) is a Marathi guy from Western Maharashtra settled in
Narayan Rane... The Shiv Sena rebel... Good administrator but bad orator... Can’t make an impact on Elite Mumbaikars... Will Sonia reward an “outsider”? Congress’s best bet to torpedo BJP-SS in the coming election… everywhere except Mumbai!
Sushilkumar Shinde… The fallback guy… mediocre administrator… viewed as a “soft” person… Being the only Dalit candidate, Maratha lobby will oppose his candidature… Also he himself does not seem to be keen on occupying the “hot seat”…
Ashok Chavan… The most sophisticated of the candidates… good equation with Sharad Pawar… Good administrator… clean slate… Has correct political lineage (Son of Shankarrao Chavan)… True blue Maratha..
Balasaheb Vikhepatil… This Sugar Baron is an old warhorse with “rustic charm”… Good administrator with deep understanding of the Sugar cooperative movement… In fact his father pioneered it in Maharshtra!
3M thinks Rane followed by Ashok Chavan have the best chance… finally “madam” and “saheb” will take the call!
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Pranab says… “Military Option is closed”… and then takes a u turn.
Zardari says… he will corporate and then refuses to hand over the terrorist
Sonia says… We will not bow down to terror
Naqvi says… lipstick protesters are un-Indian
Achutanandan says… all martyrs are dogs… then says sorry
Bal Thackeray says… first flush out mini-pakistans from the country
Just keep talking… talking… talking… no action
In the meantime there is an explosion in