ENSLAVED: The three new farm bills recently passed have withdrawn all the protection that the farmers of India and reduced them to beasts of burden, like their bullocks.

By Rajan Naryaan

In life you must always put in your best efforts. Without any expectation of any reward. Life is a game of dice. You do not know when you will hit the jackpot. Or perhaps as a book written by a friend puts it, it is all a question of your karma. Not to be interpreted necessarily in the religious sense. There is perhaps a cosmic balance where the good and bad match off and you will get the rewards that you deserve. All it takes is a tiny little red colored virus to wipe off arrogance and pride!

NOTHING seems to be as it is projected. The Modi government has been screaming from house tops that farmers will benefit greatly from its three new bills passed. The harsh reality is that only the crony capitalist friends of Narendra Modi will benefit. Prime Minister Modi is obsessed with converting India into another UK or United States. The most famous mall or shopping centre in London is Harrods. Ironically it is owned by one of the emirs of the Gulf. You can get anything you want from Harrods from a pin to an elephant. You can get any vegetable you want from any part of Goa.

ambani benefits

The three farm bills passed by Parliament is to convert India into a chain of huge supermarkets. Already one mega deal has been completed. The bold and the beautiful and the rich and the powerful are aware that both the Reliance chain of supermarkets and Amazon, online giant, have joined hands. Amazon has invested 40% of its shares in Reliance retail. The combine venture will have refrigerated storage bins in every farm production centres. It will have refrigerated vans and possibly even refrigerated trains from farm producing centres to their own chain of stores all over the country. You do not have to go to Lasagao, which is the biggest onion market in Maharashtra. For supply of the bulbs which brings tears to your eyes whenever there is shortage. You can get the most spicy chillies from Canacona and Pernem delivered to you by Amazon wherever you are.
In such a system it will be the big supermarkets which will call the shots. It is the Reliance-Amazon combine which will decide what products will be produced, at what price sold. In the case of the traditional farmer in Belgavi where Goa gets all its vegetables and meat from, there has always been the risk of spoilage. In the case of fish as we discovered last year there is a risk that it is contaminated with formalin. Incidentally, formalin is the most widely used chemical to preserve dead bodies. It is used instead of ice which is every expensive.
“Narendra Modi ki maan ki baat mai bohot ghotala hai.” Modi is taking the credit for transforming the education system in the country. The structure of the location which changes with a foundation level of five years from the age of three to eight, a proprietary level which will lead straight to the 12 standards which will be the gateway for higher education.

KILLER: It does not require an atom bomb or a 3rd World War to destroy the world. All that it takes to bring the world to a halt is a small invisible virus, apparently red in colour, called coronavirus

higher education

Even when it comes to higher education there will be two levels of a three-year degree for those who do not want to specialise, four years for those who want to specialise. Students will also be allowed to choose any combination of courses they want to in the semester system that will be adopted.
Modi Zindabad. The problem is Covid-19. Like in the good old days you cannot sit in classrooms before a blackboard. There will be no teacher in the room either to pat you in the back or rap your knuckles. Your teacher will be zoomed. You will communicate with the teacher on Zoom. In 90% of the cases you will be interacting with the teacher on a smart phone.
Except in a country where people have no money for roti, kapda and makaan, where will they get smart phones? It is fine to distribute smart phones in slums. There is no guarantee that children and teenagers will not switch on to Republic Channel to hear Arnaab Goswami screaming about Rhea Chakraborty and Kangana Ranaut. In our schools of old we only studied the prescribed courses and texts. On the smart phone the syllabus is not limited to what is prescribed by the National Council of Education Research & Training (NCART).
Recently, a former colleague in the Times of India’ pointed out a number of spelling and factorial mistakes in the books prescribed by NCERT. At the entrance gate of a University in South Africa, the following message was posted for contemplation. Destroying any nation does not require the use of atomic bombs or the use of long range missiles. It only requires lowering the quality of education and allowing cheating in the examination by the students. Patients die at the hands of such doctors. Buildings collapsed at the hands of such engineers. Money is lost at the hands of such economists and accountants.
Humanity dies at the hands of such religious economist. Justice is lost at the hands of such judges. The collapse of education is the collapse of the nation.’
All that was needed to bring the world to a standstill was a tiny red virus which you have difficulty seeing even through a microscope. We do not even know if the colour of the coronavirus is red as shown in all the pictures and illustrations. We do not know whether the virus was made in a secret military laboratory in Wuhan in China or was the effect of a crazy bat woman biologist conducting research in the wet animal market in China. The wet animal market is where live animals ranging from frogs to crocodiles are sold for consumption in China.

EDUCATION: Not all the smart phones in the world can make a dumb child smart. Just as all it requires to destroy the world is bad education


It is rather like the live fish that are displayed in our five-star restaurants, Simply Grills for instance. It is for you to choose which lobster or crab or tiger prawn that you want grilled for the pleasures of your palate. The fact remains that a very small mini virus which is highly infectious has brought the world to a stop. A virus which is not limited to India but has spread to the entire world.
Indeed, the infection is the highest in the most developed countries like the United States. The US, Brazil and India, now head the number of countries which head the coronavirus pandemic list. The new covid-19 deaths top one million and all the focus is on it even though 15 other diseases kill more people every year.
But unlike the other slow killer diseases like cancers, COPD, neurological disorders, digestive nightmares, kidney diseases and tuberculosis – none of these are as contagious or infectious as the novel coronavirus. Once the virus gets into you it spreads through the body fluids of different human beings. Specifically it can spread when you sneeze, when you cough and even when you talk with great excitement when very tiny droplets land on the person nearby. This is not the worst of it. When you sneeze or cough or talk excitedly some very tiny drops of body fluids may also land on nearby table, chair, floor, etc.
This deadly ticking time bomb can stay on the surface of thins for as long as 72 hours. Which means that if by accident you touch or come into contact with an infected surface you may get infected. We know that Covid-19 is caused by either the natural or artificially made coronavirus. But we do not know how it can be cured!
So far there is no fail proof remedy for coronavirus. If you delay contacting your doctor when the infection turns critical you can drop dead within hours or minutes of reaching the hospital. We have been reading of patients reaching the hospital dead and only after their death it has been discovered that they have died of Covid-19.
I have been a pessimist most of my life. I have not had much faith in luck. Nor have I had any rich patrons to help me. I seem to have the unique talent of making enemies and antagonizing particularly the wealthy class. Neither my wife or I have been good at saving for rainy times. On the other hand we have always been generous. Whenever someone has been in need, whether it is a maid or a driver, we have always been ready to help. The poorer amongst our friends have always reciprocated unlike many of our wealthy friends (with a few exceptions).
Since I do not know when the next print edition of the `Goan Observer’ will appear on the stands I would like to take this occasion to thank my colleagues Heena, Saish and Bindiya who have been like family. Indeed, in every job that I have been the boss, I have treated my colleagues as family. Some have reciprocated. Many have not. But that is life. We do not necessarily reap what we sow.
But as my adopted daughter who is closer to me than any real daughter could be keeps telling me — if one window closes another will open. With the blessings of this daughter who has adopted me, I hope the last years of our life will be peaceful!

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