AND a few stray thoughts for yet another Saturday. For a Saturday following the week when there’s a danger of not checking the home town of the in-laws while accepting a proposal for a marriage abroad. For a Saturday following the week when the Australian prime minister compared Narendra Modi to the rockstar Bruce Stringston following the huge response, Narendra Modi received from the local Indian community in Australia. Indian communities abroad consider Modi the boss. For a Saturday following the week when a Karnataka Infosys employee was killed when the Scorpio vehicle filled up with water in a bypass in Bengaluru following heavy rains. For a Saturday following the week when the Delhi government overturned the Supreme Court order restoring power from babulok to the elected government. The Delhi Lt Governor had been appointed the boss of all the officials by Home Minister Amit Shah. In a new offensive, the Central government has declared that all officials will come under the LG and calls by ministers will be monitored by their higher secretaries. For a Saturday following the week when girls topped the UPSC exams with the first four ranks going to them. AND a few stray thoughts on the danger of not checking the home town of the inlaws when accepting a proposal for marriage from abroad. In a dramatic case a young lawyer from Mumbai, originally from Goa, accepted a proposal of marriage from the parents of a Goan boy settled in the United States of America The young lawyer accepted the proposal as she presumed that she would live in the United States. The young woman was doing very well for herself and it was a conscious choice by her to accept the proposal. Only after she reached the United States she realized that her husband was not a citizen of the US and had only a temporary work permit. After two children were born to the couple the crises came. The husband lost his job and suggested that she return to his home town to stay with his parents. But in this case the home town of the husband where his parents were running an educational complex was in Yogi Adityanath’s Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh. The in-laws had set up very successful educational institutions in Gorakhpur. They obviously expected their young lawyer daughter-in-law to take over the management of their colleges and schools. So much so the home town of a Goan need not be Goa, but could be even Gorakhpur. Our friend had to take her children from the first world environment of the US to a filthy Gorakhpur which lacked first class medical facilities. According to her malaria and other diseases were rampant. Her children who were still not yet five years old caught an infection and she had to drive them to Lucknow, for Gorakhpur did not have airport then. From Lucknow she flew to Mumbai, taking her sick son for treatment to a hospital close to her home in Mumbai. Here her doctor scolded her soundly for taking her USborn children to Gorakhpur which is the crime capital of the country! Fortunately, being a noted lawyer, the stressed-out mother was able to file for a divorce and also get the custody of her children. Listening to her story we find that in our experience arranged marriages of Goan girls with boys abroad do not work. My own secretary when I was editing the “OHeraldo” rejected a young man from Gulf who had come to see her in Nike shoes and thick gold chains around his neck. Her parents only saw the gold chains and not the education levels of the couple. My secretary was a graduate of Carmel College in Margao, the boy had passed only his 12th standard and worked as a mechanic in the Gulf. So this is for Goan girls, when you next get a proposal from abroad find out thoroughly about where the in-laws are located and never mind how much they claim they are originally from Goa. ROCKSTAR NARENDRA MODI! AND a few stray thoughts on the Australian Prime Minister comparing Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to rockstar Bruce Stringston, following the huge response the visiting Modi received from the local Indian community in Australia. Indian communities abroad consider Modi the boss of their home country India. Modi may have lost the election in Karnataka but the Indian communities abroad continues to treat him like a rockstar and shout “Modi, Modi, Modi!” with passion. Modi, while visiting Australia, met Indian members of the community. According to the Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese he was heard telling media people present that the popularity of Modi took him by surprise. He compared the reception that Modi received from Indians in Australia as comparable to that received by visiting rockstgars. He observed that even Bruce Springston, the famous rockstar, did not get a bigger reception than that Modia received. To Indians abroad Modi is some kind of a hero. From the sound of it he is more with Indians abroad than his own countrymen in India. Indians abroad think that Modi is the leader who will improve the status of Indians internationally. Modi has been more active building relationships with foreign leaders than with the Opposition parties in his own home country. We trust the words of the Australian prime minister must have been of great consolation and comfort to Modi who is still sulking after the BJP defeat in Karnataka. EARLY RAIN TRAGEDY AND a few stray thoughts on when a Karnataka Infosys employee was killed when his SUV vehicle filled up with water in a bypass in Bengaluru following heavy rains. A bit like using a bypass or an underpass while going to Margao or some other part of Goa during the monsoon. Motorists take their chances. Notoriously, drainage systems are not in place in such bypasses, overpasses or underpasses or they don’t work. There is an underpass very close to the heart of Bengaluru city near the state secretariat. The underpass get flooded every time it rains heavily. It seems in this case a young woman working at Infosys had hired a SUV to take her family around Bengaluru. The driver used the underpass without checking whether it was safe for traffic. The underpass drainage was choked and water flooded into the vehicle very fast. It was virtually drowned in the waters flooding the underpass. Doors and windows got jammed and the Infosys employee and her family had a hard time getting out of the car. While the rest of the family managed to get out after the glass was smashed, the young techie herself died in the underpass. By the time she was rescued she was in a choked condition and dead by the time they brought to her to the hospital. This horrible incident took place soon after the swearing in of the new cabinet headed by Chief Minister of Karnataka Siddaramaiah. Underpasses are very dangerous even in Goa. The underpass at Navelim across the railway tracks keeps getting flooded every monsoon. The underpass at Bambolim is not used during the monsoon but it serves as a shelter for the homeless. The problem with underpasses in the country is that nobody thinks of putting in a proper drainage system. Once you are in the underpass and for any reason water floods in you may be trapped. The Karnataka government had passed orders that none of the underpasses be used during the monsoon season. Tragic incidents like this speak of the poorly of the infrastructure in the country. Instead of boasting of express highways and superfast trains our leaders should pay improve basic infrastructure in road works in their cities and pay particular attention to the science of an efficient drainage system first. POWER TO BABULOK AND a few stray thoughts on when the Delhi government overturned the SC’s order restoring power over the babus to the elected government. The Delhi Lt Governor had been appointed the boss of all officials by Home Minister Amit Shah. In a new offensive, the Central government has declared that all officials will come under the LG and calls by ministers will be monitored by their higher secretaries. The Central government issued an ordinance cancelling the orders of the Supreme Court. The SC had earlier upheld the stand of the Aam Aadmi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal that the elected government will have control over the officials working in the state of Delhi. It is a normal practice that the state government be in charge of appointments, postings and transfers of its officials in the state. This includes IPS and IAS officers deputed by the Central government. However, in a totally illegal and arrogant manner the Central government passed an ordinance to prevent victory for Arvind Kejriwal. The only catch is that the ordinance which is the substitute for a bill has to be passed by the Rajya Sabha — where the BJP does not have a majority. Though Kejriwal has been the chief minister of Delhi successively for years now he has not been able to exercise any power. The LG appointed by Home Minister Amti Shah does not let the AAP government function. Again, in an act of harassment, two senior ministers including deputy chief minister of Delhi, Manish Sisodia, have been arrested in an alleged Delhi liquor scam. The Central government has gone one step further and transferred power from ministers to secretaries. Even the telephone calls of ministers will now be regulated by their IAS secretaries. GIRL TOPPERS! AND a last stray thoughts for yet another Saturday is when girls topped the UPSC exams, with the first fours ranks going to them. It is obvious that girls pay more attention to competitive exams than boys. Perhaps girls don’t have so many distraction. What is satisfying is that most of the girls who scored the top five ranks are from middle class and lower middle class family. Some of them are children of dock workers and petty vendors. Many of the parents are illiterate but have encourage their children in the belief that they will become big officers. Goa seems to be an exception with not a single Goan candidate passing the UPSC exam. The only girl among the top 500 is the daughter of a junior army officer who is originally from Bihar but studied in Goa.