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Farmers are treated like orphans

Farmers’ agitation is going great guns at present. But is this development a sudden outburst? The answer to this question is that the political system of this country has always treated the farmers as orphans. It is so ironic that on the one hand we call the farmers Annadata, in Maharashtra they are also called Baliraja, and on the other, their condition is so pathetic that many of them choose to end their lives. In advanced states like Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh, farmers are also forced to commit suicide. It’s so shameful and painful!
Official statistics say that about 353 million people are involved in farming in the country. These farmers owe a total loan of Rs 12,60,000 crores while the Rs. 6,70,000 crores which the industrialists of this country have taken as loans from banks are about to sink. It is called NPA, which is called non-performing assets in general language. However, there is a dispute over this figure. Experts say that the reduced NPA is being shown. The actual NPA is more than Rs. 12 lakh crores. Also know that the concession in the form of tax incentives to the tune of Rs. 17,14,000 crores have been given to industrial houses in the last three years. No strictness is shown to recover debt from the industries but the recovery agents of banks harass the farmers and take away cows & buffaloes from their house.
 
As far as loan waivers are concerned, the Reserve Bank of India rules advise not to take this step because this will upset the budget. It is also true that the states are not able to bear the full burden of loan waiver. But the question that arises is that when permission is granted to write off industries’ loans and they are given concessions as incentives then why should the farmers not get this facility? In Uttar Pradesh, the BJP wanted to win the election and hence made a promise for loan waiver. After winning the election, the BJP waived the farmers’ loans. Following the agitation, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis finally announced waiver of loans and most farmers will be debt free. I congratulate the chief minister for this but what about farmers in other states?
 
Some people raise the question that there was a loan waiver during Indira Gandhi’s time and the UPA government but what difference does that make? Farmers are still committing suicide! How has their situation improved? I believe loan waiver is an immediate diagnosis. In the spirit of time and relevance, it is very important that the farmers get relief. The lasting solution to the problem can not be found until we see farming from the industry perspective. If the industries have to be set up then farmers’ land is taken. The industrial belt is created. Road shows are organised at home and abroad to attract industry. Plans are made, technology is taken into account. All resources are prepared. Due thought is given to where the goods will be sold, the concessions and freebees are showered like anything but have you ever seen this type of idea being applied to farming?
 
The representatives of the farmers have also been reaching the Parliament and the state legislatures, have become ministers, but these leaders have never tried to capture the root cause of the problem. That is why whether they are Chaudhary Charan Singh, Devi Lal, Sharad Pawar, Mahendra Singh Tikait or Sharad Joshi, who are agitating in the name of farmers, the problems of farmers can not be solved. Swaminathan was a great honourable person under whose chairmanship the government had also formed a commission. He also presented the report but it has not been implemented till date. The government has never evinced will to transform the agriculture into industry and nor has the Planning Commission taken any such initiatives.
 
Many agricultural universities have been set up in this country but what are they apart from being white elephants? There is a lot of research on paper but on the ground, did the farmers get any benefit? It is necessary that thousands of agricultural workers should be trained which link farmers to modern technology. The  government has to take initiative for this. Plans should be made. It will take years but the situation of the farmers will definitely improve.
 
More than 80 per cent of the farmers in this country are small land holders. They have land in pieces. As long as we continue to do the piecemeal farming, farming can not be transformed into a profitable proposition. A cluster of thousands of acres of land is readied in countries like America, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Brazil and Israel. Farmers have an involvement in the measurement of the land and get the benefit. Today, exotic fruits like Kiwi, Blackberry are coming from America, Japan, New Zealand, Australia. Japan cultivates such  melons as are sold for between $250 and $500. Can we not cultivate such exotic fruits? But first, farmers should be equipped with technology and other resources!
 
There is no such effort to make cluster and train the farmers till date. Good seeds, good manure is very distant. There is no planning on what the farmers should grow so that they get good prices. We must also consider what kind of land we have and which crop can give better yield.
 
In my 18-year tenure in the Rajya Sabha, I have always raised questions about the status of farmers. With the figures, I kept this fact in the House that the crops are destroyed in the country due to shortage of water, due to excess water (flood) and hailstorms. So the government should plan how to save the farmers from flood and drought. For this, I have been continuously raising the demand in the House for providing necessary infrastructure. A large number of cold storages and warehouses are needed in this country. Millions of tonnes of grains rot every season. There should be an arrangement for marketing the farm produce. And all this should be on the ground, not on paper! Nothing will happen by launching farmers’ TV and farmers’ bulletin. There is a need to ensure water and power supply for farmers to cultivate and prosper? In a country where there are big scams in the name of irrigation, who is there to see if the farmer’s farm is getting water for irrigation or not? You have not seen a farmer living in a good bungalow and travelling in a big car but the people of who play the politics of farmers are enjoying themselves to the hilt. Cooperative banks were set up for farmers but political farmers are having all the fun. Farmers are dying, what difference does that make to them? Here there are  the people who swallow the grain of the poor and yet do not feel ashamed nor pained. It seems that there is a lack of both shame and pain in the administrative system. The farmers’ suicide has become a subject of fun and frivolity. It is a good thing to love your children but do not hate children of others! We need a government that believes, that feels your pain! As long as the government does not feel the pain of farmers, the situation will remain the same.
However, many people are asking the question whether the current farmers’ agitation involves real farmers or representatives of the farmers or someone else is driving it in the name of farmers? I believe that farmers should avoid politicians and political parties as they target the government in the name of farmers.
 
Before I conclude
 
Britain which ruled India for nearly 200 years, today houses many parliamentarians of Indian origin. In the UK Parliament, Indian people have been flying the flag of their victory. In the latest election, 12 people of Indian origin including Preet Kaur Gill and Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi have been elected MPs. The last time this number was 10. This is really a heart-warming news.

Environment devastation means self-destructio

 
Before discussing the latest step of US President Donald Trump, let's take a look at some of the environmental issues released by NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), a reputed scientific institution in his country and around the world.
 
In the past 6,50,000 years, our planet's carbon dioxide has never been as much as 406.17 particle/million as it is today. After the industrial revolution, the amount of acids in the upper surface of the ocean has increased by about 30 per cent. Every year, about 2 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide dissolve in this water.
 
This is a dangerous situation where the US contributes 15 per cent to global carbon emissions. The more carbon dioxide goes into the atmosphere, the harder the life will get.
 
NASA's facts say further: Between 2002 and 2006, Greenland lost 150 to 250 cubic kilometers of snow, from 2002 to 2005, 152 cubic kilometers of snow in Antarctica was destroyed. Antarctica had the lowest ice in the summer of 2012.
 
In nearly a hundred years, the temperature of the Earth has increased by about 1.1 degree Celsius.
 
The point to note here is that the 11 warmest years recorded so far are from the late 1990s. The 1990s was the hottest decade in the entire millennium. In 2003, 35,000 people died in Europe due to the effects of hot winds. 2016 was the hottest year. Eight out of the 12 months were much warmer compared to previous years.
 
Due to the increasing temperature worldwide, over 700 meters of sea water have become warmer by 0.302 degree Fahrenheit in the past 45 years. It is not necessary to tell why temperature is rising on Earth. Everyone knows that after years of industrialization, the carbon dioxide in the environment has increased; it has caused holes in the natural ozone layer that protects us. Obviously, if this earth is to be saved, then most of the activities of human beings, which are destroying the environment in a dangerous way, will have to be curbed. America is guiltier because Industrial Revolution took place there first and the most harm has been done by her.
 
Concern about climate change is not really new. After World War II, discussions about climate change were going on, but no concrete steps were being taken. Years later, in 1972, the first conference was held in Sweden's capital Stockholm, in which every country made its rules for environmental protection. The United Nations Environment Program was formed for this. Headquartered at Nairobi, it continued to be ignored. It took  20 years for  the world to realize that something else should be done!
 
Representatives of different countries met in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and decided that member countries would meet every year and discuss climate related concerns and chalk out plans. This conference was named as Conference of Parties (KoP). The havoc is being wreaked since then.
 
A turning point came when in November-December 2015, at the Paris Climate Summit, 195 countries of the world agreed on the fact that they would work together to curb the rising temperature of the earth and strive to save the Earth.
 
The developed countries have been given greater responsibility because they have already done more harm. It was decided that the developed countries should give 100 billion dollars per annum to the developing countries from 2020, so that they can adopt carbon emission reduction methods. India also got involved in it.
 
Now Trump is saying that India has joined the agreement because it will get billions of dollars! Amazing indeed, Trump sahab! If India has to reduce the consumption of coal for electricity, then the money is needed to adopt other ways. This money must be given by those who have harmed the environment.
 
Why do we suffer the brunt of their actions? Yet we are more active because we equate environment to God. We believe the Earth to be mother, worship the rivers and the sea, worship air and worship trees and plants. Around 2,600 years ago, Lord Mahavir bequeathed to us the religion that is closest to environment.
 
The message of all the religions based in Indian culture is to protect nature and environment.There can be no one in the world more concerned about the environment than us. The United Nations has just released a report in which it has been stated that India has been running eight years ahead of the target of reducing carbon emissions as per the 2015 agreement. By 2022, India will start generating 40 per cent of its power from non-conventional sources.
 
Trump sahab is in a hurry to overturn every decision of Obama. He forgot Obama had said that everyone had a win in the Paris accord. America has the opportunity to create millions of jobs by investing in new technology and new research and the opportunity for developing countries to take advantage of new inventions. American industrialists also expressed their opinion in favour of the agreement.
 
This move of Trump is being opposed in the United States, but Trump is becoming victim of blind nationalism. The good thing is that the European Union is with this agreement. If all are united in favour of the agreement, then Trump can be taught a lesson that a lot of things are possible even without America’s support.
 
However, these things are of national and international level and will continue. But we will have to make some effort at the people's level. The government's effort must also be with us. There is no wood or coal smoke in the 2 crore homes to which Narendra Modi has provided domestic gas connections. This is a big initiative. Vehicles, ACs and refrigerators also make a huge contribution to the carbon emissions. However, these are the things without which it is difficult to work or live.
 
We can try and share the vehicle and make the most of public transport. Use the bicycle to move around the neighbourhood. Do not throw garbage in the rivers. It is necessary that emphasis be laid on environmental education. There is no such effective system in our education system now so that we could tell the next generation what our Earth, our atmosphere is and what we must do to save it. Some small tips can also be effective. And of course, we should also make a resolve that if we are using two ACs in our house, then at least four trees will be planted.
 
Before I conclude
Nagpur City RTO has taken a great initiative. Now for the passage of truck-bus, 4 trees, three for a mid-sized bus, two for cars and two for small vehicles and a tree for  auto rickshaw will have to be planted. Though legally it has not been made mandatory, but it has been said that the photo of planting trees should be submitted! Expect this initiative to be meaningful. Such initiatives should be started not only in Nagpur but also in other cities and it should be kept in mind that the sapling that has been planted should remain alive. Every year, millions of trees are planted in this country. The question is: how many survive?

Mountain of expectations in the sea of challenges!

Even if Narendra Modi is the leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party, at present, he is the Prime Minister of the country, so his functionings hould not be seen from any party's perspective. I am a born Congress man and can sharply be critical but when I analyse the term of Narendra Modi as an editor, then a scene floats before me, in which the challenges are like the ocean and there is a mountain of expectations in it. Now the moot point is will the mountain of expectations be able to save people from the waves of problems?
 
Bypassing all electoral predictions three years ago, Modi’s charisma netted the BJP as many as 282 seats out of the 543 Lok Sabha seats and ensured a whopping 336 seats to its alliance. Of course, what Modi has said has drawn the youth of this country towards him. Modiji appeared to be a ray of hope for the youth. After three years this hope is also Modi's biggest challenge. At present, about 50 per cent of the population of India is 25 years old and 65 per cent of the population is under 35 years of age. Narendra Modi has a great responsibility to channelise the energy of this young population. The formula of 'Make in India' is very attractive and if it is implemented properly then this can be the best recipe to remove unemployment. China has spread its mantra of 'Made in China' to the whole world. Will we be able to spread the recipe of 'Make in India' outside the country? Such a scheme called Skilled India has been launched, but it will also take time to show results. Will our country's youth wait for long?
 
There is no doubt that Modi ji is trying day and night to see the results of the schemes in the near future. He works 14 to 16 hours a day. His time management is very good. His ability to understand the issues is amazing. Whatever his views may be in the eyes of others, but Modi ji is very clear about his ideas and there is no confusion. Of course, this is his positive side. He has linked the 28 million poor to the banks. LPG connections have been provided to more than 2 crore poor households.
 
Modi ji took the bold step of declaring a war on corruption. Today, from minister to bureaucrat all are frightened. This is no small matter! Bureaucrats are coming to the office well in time and the playing of golf in lunch time has stopped. Everyone's accountability has been fixed. He has strengthened the Prime Minister's Office and enhanced the involvement of Intelligence Bureau (IB).
 
The bold step taken by Modi about demonetisation may have attracted a storm of protest and opposition but its benefits will become apparent in the times to come. My guess is that within five years the cash currency will end. Crores of people will fall in the tax slab. One thing seems very good to me that when he was chief minister, he had criticised the plans of the Centre, but now he is implementing the same as Prime Minister. He did not let his ego come in the way. Indeed, on becoming the Prime Minister, many such things are known, which nobody knew about. Not even the Deputy Prime Minister. I would like to tell you an incident. When Morarji Desai became the Prime Minister, then Inder Kumar Gujral was the Ambassador of India in Russia. Morarji Bhai was a fan of America and Gujral Sahib was a person of the Left thinking! Gujral Sahib immediately resigned. Morarji Bhai called him and asked the reason. Gujral Saheb told the reason for the difference between both of them. Morarji Bhai said that 'you have to be there for friendship with Russia in the information that has come to me after becoming Prime Minister'. Gujral Saheb believed and I should tell you that the major arms deals were executed during his tenure. It is good that Modi ji did not allow politics to come in the plans designed for the good of the country's people and continued it.
 
I would also like to appreciate that Modi ji has given more respect to Gandhi ji than even the Congress. Before Independence, Gandhi ji spoke of clean India. Now Modi ji has given a glimpse of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. Whenever I go abroad, I wonder if our country will be so clean. The mind is pleased to see the clean rivers. In Japan, even the garbage house looks like an art gallery! Hope that Modi ji will take this campaign of hygiene far ahead.
During his election campaign, Modi ji gave a slogan of ‘achche din’. Now people are asking when will the good days come? Job promises have not been fulfilled. Inflation is getting uncontrollable. I believe that unless small industries are started in the different parts of the country, till the closed industries are restarted, infrastructure work is increased, from where will employment be generated and how inflation will reduce? The problem can not end so long as the banks do not stop harassing the new entrepreneurs. Large industrial houses have taken lakhs of crores of loans and they take new loans too. Those who do not have their assets, they should get more loan than their assets. The challenge to control these situation is on Modi ji. 
 
One big issue is that of the farmers of this country too. If the BJP waives off the debt of the farmers as soon as the BJP came to power in UP, then the question arises as to why the debts in other BJP-ruled states have not been waived off? Farmers are expecting this from Modi!
 
When Modi ji took oath as the Prime Minister, the heads of SAARC countries had come with the best wishes. Now we have to see whether we have fulfilled those expectations? Can you remove their pain by building a strong India? There is an old saying that you can live happily when your neighbours are also happy! Modi ji needs to do a lot on foreign policy.
 
Within the country there are many such issues like Naxalism, terrorism in Kashmir, and insurgency in north eastern India. If Modiji can overcome them, generations will remember him. In recent years, atrocities against women have increased, incidents of offending their honour have increased. It can be said that law and order is the responsibility of the state, but the women of this country are looking at Modi ji with hopeful eyes for protecting their honour.
 Another big responsibility on Modi ji is to respect the critics. Opposition is scattered and fragile. In this situation, Modi ji will have to work on the theories of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. In Nehru ji's time the opposition was weak but still he gave opportunity and respect to the voice of the opposition. He used to inspire the young MPs to speak. He used to listen to his criticism. Right now some people in the country are making a mistake of treating criticism as pure antagonism. Modi ji must curb this.
 
Nonetheless, whether there be a Congress government or a government of Modi ji in the country, we have to see that India becomes strong. Tricolour keeps fluttering proudly, India  becomes a poverty-free country, Indian youth’s aspirations are fulfilled. Farmers should become strong and India should become the guide of the world. Our neighbours should become our friends. If Modi ji can do all this, then his stature will rise even higher.
 
Before I conclude
After the terrorist attack in Manchester, there was an extraordinary expression of human emotion. The people gave shelter to the children who had got separated from their parents. Muslim taxi drivers ferried many injured to hospital and brought other people home but did not take a single penny. The nearby gurudwaras not only provided food to the affcted people but also accommodated them. Many people in the Sikh community came forward to help the victims. I salute these captains of compassion.

 

Environment devastation means self-destruction

 
Before discussing the latest step of US President Donald Trump, let's take a look at some of the environmental issues released by NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), a reputed scientific institution in his country and around the world.
 
In the past 6,50,000 years, our planet's carbon dioxide has never been as much as 406.17 particle/million as it is today. After the industrial revolution, the amount of acids in the upper surface of the ocean has increased by about 30 per cent. Every year, about 2 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide dissolve in this water.
 
This is a dangerous situation where the US contributes 15 per cent to global carbon emissions. The more carbon dioxide goes into the atmosphere, the harder the life will get.
 
NASA's facts say further: Between 2002 and 2006, Greenland lost 150 to 250 cubic kilometers of snow, from 2002 to 2005, 152 cubic kilometers of snow in Antarctica was destroyed. Antarctica had the lowest ice in the summer of 2012.
 
In nearly a hundred years, the temperature of the Earth has increased by about 1.1 degree Celsius.
 
The point to note here is that the 11 warmest years recorded so far are from the late 1990s. The 1990s was the hottest decade in the entire millennium. In 2003, 35,000 people died in Europe due to the effects of hot winds. 2016 was the hottest year. Eight out of the 12 months were much warmer compared to previous years.
 
Due to the increasing temperature worldwide, over 700 meters of sea water have become warmer by 0.302 degree Fahrenheit in the past 45 years. It is not necessary to tell why temperature is rising on Earth. Everyone knows that after years of industrialization, the carbon dioxide in the environment has increased; it has caused holes in the natural ozone layer that protects us. Obviously, if this earth is to be saved, then most of the activities of human beings, which are destroying the environment in a dangerous way, will have to be curbed. America is guiltier because Industrial Revolution took place there first and the most harm has been done by her.
 
Concern about climate change is not really new. After World War II, discussions about climate change were going on, but no concrete steps were being taken. Years later, in 1972, the first conference was held in Sweden's capital Stockholm, in which every country made its rules for environmental protection. The United Nations Environment Program was formed for this. Headquartered at Nairobi, it continued to be ignored. It took  20 years for  the world to realize that something else should be done!
 
Representatives of different countries met in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and decided that member countries would meet every year and discuss climate related concerns and chalk out plans. This conference was named as Conference of Parties (KoP). The havoc is being wreaked since then.
 
A turning point came when in November-December 2015, at the Paris Climate Summit, 195 countries of the world agreed on the fact that they would work together to curb the rising temperature of the earth and strive to save the Earth.
 
The developed countries have been given greater responsibility because they have already done more harm. It was decided that the developed countries should give 100 billion dollars per annum to the developing countries from 2020, so that they can adopt carbon emission reduction methods. India also got involved in it.
 
Now Trump is saying that India has joined the agreement because it will get billions of dollars! Amazing indeed, Trump sahab! If India has to reduce the consumption of coal for electricity, then the money is needed to adopt other ways. This money must be given by those who have harmed the environment.
 
Why do we suffer the brunt of their actions? Yet we are more active because we equate environment to God. We believe the Earth to be mother, worship the rivers and the sea, worship air and worship trees and plants. Around 2,600 years ago, Lord Mahavir bequeathed to us the religion that is closest to environment.
 
The message of all the religions based in Indian culture is to protect nature and environment.There can be no one in the world more concerned about the environment than us. The United Nations has just released a report in which it has been stated that India has been running eight years ahead of the target of reducing carbon emissions as per the 2015 agreement. By 2022, India will start generating 40 per cent of its power from non-conventional sources.
 
Trump sahab is in a hurry to overturn every decision of Obama. He forgot Obama had said that everyone had a win in the Paris accord. America has the opportunity to create millions of jobs by investing in new technology and new research and the opportunity for developing countries to take advantage of new inventions. American industrialists also expressed their opinion in favour of the agreement.
 
This move of Trump is being opposed in the United States, but Trump is becoming victim of blind nationalism. The good thing is that the European Union is with this agreement. If all are united in favour of the agreement, then Trump can be taught a lesson that a lot of things are possible even without America’s support.
 
However, these things are of national and international level and will continue. But we will have to make some effort at the people's level. The government's effort must also be with us. There is no wood or coal smoke in the 2 crore homes to which Narendra Modi has provided domestic gas connections. This is a big initiative. Vehicles, ACs and refrigerators also make a huge contribution to the carbon emissions. However, these are the things without which it is difficult to work or live.
 
We can try and share the vehicle and make the most of public transport. Use the bicycle to move around the neighbourhood. Do not throw garbage in the rivers. It is necessary that emphasis be laid on environmental education. There is no such effective system in our education system now so that we could tell the next generation what our Earth, our atmosphere is and what we must do to save it. Some small tips can also be effective. And of course, we should also make a resolve that if we are using two ACs in our house, then at least four trees will be planted.
 
Before I conclude
Nagpur City RTO has taken a great initiative. Now for the passage of truck-bus, 4 trees, three for a mid-sized bus, two for cars and two for small vehicles and a tree for  auto rickshaw will have to be planted. Though legally it has not been made mandatory, but it has been said that the photo of planting trees should be submitted! Expect this initiative to be meaningful. Such initiatives should be started not only in Nagpur but also in other cities and it should be kept in mind that the sapling that has been planted should remain alive. Every year, millions of trees are planted in this country. The question is: how many survive?

Indian win in Jadhav case a diplomatic victory

hail Prime Minister Narendra Modi, external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and my friend and famous lawyer Advocate Harish Salve for the initial victory in Kulbhushan Jadhav case.
I congratulate the Prime Minister and the external affairs minister because they took a decision in a very diplomatic way on the sensitive issue. The Prime Minister must have pondered the question as to whom to send to the International Court of Justice at The Hague to plead the Jadhav case! He could also have sent the attorney general  of the country Mukul Rohatgi. Normally the attorney general is present in the court on behalf of the government, but in this case, the Prime Minister and the external affairs minister did not worry about who would say what! He decided to send Harish Salve, who has brought glory to the country through his legal acumen.
 
Congratulations to Harish Salve because he has crowned the country with glory. In Jadhav case, he has also set a great example. Generally he  charges huge fees. His fees are sometimes in crores too. In the Vodafone case, he got a fee of more than Rs 100 crores. In the instant case lawyer Harish Salve took only Rs 1 as a token fee. With this sacrifice, he has raised his personal respect; he has also set a benchmark in the field of advocacy. He is the son of a senior Congress leader NKP Salve and by his magnanimous gesture has brought laurels to him and his mother Dr Amberi. Likewise, he has brought glory to Nagpur where   he spent his childhood.
 
By taking only Rs 1 as fee  Harish Salve has sent the message that when it comes to the country, people are ready to make any sacrifice in any way. Young people sacrifice. When difficult times come, people come forward. This sacrifice by Harish Salve has also conveyed that the whole country stands as one in the case of Kulbhushan Jadhav. We all know that Jadhav has been trapped by Pakistan. He was abducted from Iran and the confession video that Pakistan is showing the world is nothing more than a facade. Forcibly, he has been made to confess to the crime.  Had he really been a spy, would he confess? No spy ever confessed to spying. There is no doubt that Jadhav is innocent. He has become a victim of the ISI’s machinations.
 
I believe that the initial victory in the International Court of Justice in the Jadhav case is a big victory for India’s diplomacy and it can also help Nawaz Sharif in Pakistan’s domestic politics. By using this, he can put pressure on those people who keep on fuelling unrest. Everyone knows that there is no true democracy in Pakistan, where democracy is not being allowed to flourish by the army and the ISI and now the terrorists have also joined hands with them. The army and ISI enjoy unbridled power there. Terrorist organisations are dominating. Nawaz Sharif can abide by these court rulings. Nawaz Sharif should keep in mind that within two years he has to go before people in the elections. Two years later, Narendra Modi too has to seek people’s mandate afresh in the general election. There is a possibility that Sharif will win. At that time he will be more powerful. Then with Pakistan’s situation, he will be able to make better relations with Modiji.
 
My information is that they want to have a better relationship with India but China is a big obstacle in this. China does not want relations between India and Pakistan to improve. That’s a very big move. It has made America dependent for many things. It is building roadways from Asia to Europe for business. In Beijing last week, in the presence of 28 big leaders of the world and representatives from 120 countries, China announced a new Silk Route, and the amazing thing is that it has described it as the path of peace. This peace is actually a trick that is why India has not participated in it.
China is trying to join the Afghan peace process, selling warships to Bangladesh and giving arms and money to Pakistan. The deal of 30 fighter aircraft is almost complete. Here, in the case of terrorist Azhar Masood, it is vetoing in the United Nations against India. China has confused India’s friend Nepal too. Actually China knows that India is emerging as a superpower, so it is currently laying siege around India. Except Pakistan, our relations with other SAARC countries like Afghanistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka have always been cordial but in recent years the cordiality has declined. This situation is not right. If the country is worried then surely the Prime Minister must either be looking for some way or implementing the measure he finds best. I feel that he should send a positive message to the friendly countries and take the country into confidence vis-a-vis our relations with neighbouring countries like Pakistan, China, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Bhutan, Nepal and Sri Lanka
.
Another concern with diplomacy is that the people of this country fear that historically our most trusted and tested friend Soviet Russia is now going away from us? This concern has arisen because Russia and Pakistan are becoming closer. Pakistan and Russia have done manoeuvers a few months ago. We have to see where our international policy is headed to. There is no harm if we are going to be close to the US. We should have good relations with everyone but friendship with Russia is special though friendship with America can not be ignored in any case. For, whenever we are in trouble, Russia has supported us. We are battling China on one side and Pakistan on the other. In such a situation, the tried and tested old friend Russia must be with us!
 
Before I conclude
 
I salute those girls of Gothada Tappa Dahna village in Rewari district of Haryana who forced the government to accept their demand. The girls were demanding the extension of school facility from 10th standard to the 12th standard, but no one was listening. Actually, the government rule in Haryana is that if there are 150 students in the 9th and 10th grade, then the school can be extended to 12th standard. In this village school, there were only 70 students in 9th and 10th standard, so the government was reluctant to accept the demand. The girls sat on dharna. The minister came and gave assurance but the girls said that the order must be issued! Within a week, the government had to give in. The school will now be teaching till the 12th standard. It is called passion for education! Hope this passion grips the whole country!