Friday, January 22, 2010

The great Indian red-tape

There is just too much happening in India to feel sad about.

To start off it was Indian government's insult of the sport Hockey by offering them peanuts. I am not saying that hockey and cricket should be paid equally a priori but from the government side they can't have double standards with regards to facilities,funds and time slots on DD. Its a different matter if one of them can attract greater revenue than the other from commercial sources like sale of tickets, advertisements etc.  And then came along the protests from Abhinav Bindra and I empathize with him a lot given that I too feel like quitting research every morning I wake up, just that my love for science overruns all institutional factors. But I am not sure if things continue the way they are then how long I will be able to sustain my life purely driven by personal love for doing science.  And then there was this unimaginable intelligent move by the Rajasthan Government to register child marriages as a way of preventing them! {Thinking of telling them that a course on "Logic' is being offered in the Computer Science department of TIFR.} 

To top it all has been my exciting experience with the online passport application where the form seems to reflect very well the computer programming knowledge of the Govt of India. If I type the access code then the email id gets deleted and if I edit my height then my address gets deleted and finally when I click "save" the form simply disappears!  And our technologically evolved govt. rules tell me that I can't go in with my paper application unless I have filled my online form. Accompanying it  was my extremely fruitful visit to the passport collection center in Colaba, Mumbai where after keeping me waiting in that filthy place till 2Pm on the pretext of lunch-time, they told me that such queries like mine about renewal of expired passport, are answered only before 1Pm and rudely shut the doors on me.  I was felt so full of gratitude at this extremely timely piece of advice.  

And to add to the on going scenario, NDTV decided to censor my comments on their web-page when I commented about the Hockey issue an Bindra issue. Wonder what NDTV found objectionable about my comments! And I wrote to Sashi Tharoor and his office about the fiasco I am facing with my passport and there has been no reply from his office. I also wrote to NIC and the passport office about their extremely well-designed online passport form and I am also waiting to heard from them for many weeks now.

In the light of this miraculous India that I live in talking about CMI sometimes looks like talking of of an institute in a far away land far from the madding crowds.

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