January 6, 2013.
Times of India.
For those of us who remember the Kandahar hijack of Indian Airlines flight IC-814 in 1999, we would also remember the changes made to the Anti-Hijacking Act 1982 by the NDA govt. The amendment stated that the govt will not negotiate with hijackers and the hijacked aircraft will be shot down.
The UPA govt has decided to follow in the footsteps of NDA swallowing its misplaced Indo-Italian pride to curb recent trends that have hijacked its functioning. Fasting has become so common since the fast of a certain K.Chandrasekhar Rao that India's death-by-fast rate has surpassed the infant mortality rate in the last quarter of 2012. India received a certificate of achievement from UNICEF.
The Govt-appointed Shrirama committee has submitted its report giving the below six options to the Govt. on how to deal with the situation.
1 Maintain Status quo: India's population pressure will ease a little. However, this option is not feasible.
2 Amend constitution to insert Article 21(1)Right to life to include Right to eat. The Chief Justice of Supreme Court has already clarified that Right to Eat does NOT include a right not to eat. However this option is again not feasible because of difficulties in implementation.
3 No politician to be allowed to fast. The govt. has to be ready to face backlash from within.
4 Only foreigners to be allowed to fast in India for non-personal reasons. Though feasible, there is an apprehension that people will revolt against unfair treatment with only foreigners given the privilege to fast.
5 Whenever someone fasts on an issue, get someone from the opposite camp to fast too. This approach is very feasible, but will promote hatred and misgivings between people.
6 Ban fasting with an Anti-Fasting Bill.
The main provisions of the Bill are:
-All fasts by Indian nationals, regular or naturalized, by foreigners and 'aliens' in any geographical area of India or the world, for any issue concerned with India will be held as a private and personal fast irrespective of the faster's proclamations.
-All fasting by females will be deemed as advance/belated Karva Chauth fasts irrespective of whether there is a husband, while all fasting by males will be considered a diet plan irrespective of their weight and BMI. If a confusion arises with regards to the gender, the person is free to choose between Karva Chauth and diet plan and the Govt to duly accept the same without objection.
-Using fasting as a tool to blackmail the Govt. will be held a crime under Indian Penal Code 306(suicide) punishable with lifetime imprisonment, and in the rarest of rare cases, revoking Article 21 for that person.
Given the frenetic pace that fasting is being adopted and the ridiculous reasons for which fasting has been adopted, the committee recommends option 6.
Below is a compilation of current and ongoing fasts.
- Laloo Prasad Yadav to have his name cleared completely from ALL scams in which his first name or surname appears.
-Rabri Devi to enforce a system of twin govts wherein if she becomes CM of Bihar, Laloo must become CM of Jharkhand or vice versa.
- Ajit Singh to demand a separate Harit Pradesh.
-Krishna Reddy for a separate state of Nizamguda comprising any district that touches Hyderabad or is within 200 km of the city.
- Ganga Reddy, s/o Krishna Reddy for a separate state of Nalgonda as the people have been economically, politically, culturally, spiritually and all-lly exploited by Guptas, Mughals, Britishers, Nizams,Telenganas, Andhras, Kannadigas, Madhya Pradeshis and naxals.
- Chandra Reddy for a separate state to be ruled by naxals formed from Jharkhand, Orissa, MP, Chattisgarh and AP and registration of a party named Naxalite-Democratic party-NDP. It would be a joke of the century if the NDP splits into NDP and NDP-M in future.
- Alok Singh: to force Pizza Hut to reduce delivery promise time from 30 min to 18 min beyond which the pizzas have to be delivered free.
- Kranti Patel: to force India to dispose its nuclear arsenal, preferably by celebrating Diwali in Pakistan using them.
- Upen Godlu to declare Kavaratti (Lakshwadeep) as a separate country. Half of Vatican city has gone on fast for a day to protest against this as Vatican city would cease to be thew world's smallest country by at least the measure of population. It is however not yet clear if it would also lose the distinction of the smallest country by area.
Political experts say Govt. may pass the Anti-Fasting Bill 2013 envisaged in option 6 in the Budget session of the Parliament if it does not get hijacked by any scam. In such case, the govt could deal with the nuisance by getting the 'first female' President(who miraculously survived APJ Abdul Kalam due to the hype of 'first female president') to promulgate an ordinance under Article 123 of the Constitution.
Interestingly, Departments of Political Science and Psychology at various prestigious universities have sanctioned case studies to find the reasons why the same hype couldn't give Hillary Clinton the White House.