Harish Jharia

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27 May 2012

Sky-Rocketing Petrol Prices In India Reaching The All-Time High At Rs 77.54 Per Litre

Serpentine queues at petrol pumps on the eve of petrol price hike 

© Harish Jharia 

Finance and economics are the subjects that I usually do not understand. I always avoided trying to understand how the foreign exchange rates between Indian Rupee and US Dollar are specified. Frequently increasing petrol prices are also similar calculations that I always avoided to learn or even understand. 

Nevertheless, the recent price rise of Rs 7 plus made me motivated to learn some basic idea about the pricing of petrol in India. I learnt it by a simple comparison between the petrol prices in Ashburn, VA, USA and that in Indian cities like Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai. 

To my utter surprise, I found that the price per litre of this essential commodity in the United States continues to be around  $ 0.9854 unit currency of the US; whereas, the price of the same commodity in India is far more than Rs 70 unit currency of India.  The ratio of  0.9854 : 70 does not deserve any comparison.

My study goes as follows…

Ashburn, VA, USA Gas price $ 3.73 per gallon 
@ US price, the rate per litre would be $ 0.9854 
The price of 1 litre of petrol in US would have been Rs 54.197
Rate per Litre: India (Delhi) price in Rs 73.14 – US price in Rs 54.197 = Difference in Rs 18.943

New Delhi, Delhi, India Gas price Rs 73.14 per litre 
@ India price, the rate per gallon would be Rs 276.835
The price of 1 gallon of petrol in US would have been Rs 205.15
Rate per Gallon: India (Delhi) price in Rs 276.835 – US price in Rs 205.15 = Difference in Rs 71.685

Conversion rates: 
1 Gallon = 3.785 Litre
Rs 55 = 1 US Dollar 
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Reference: VirginiaGasPrices.com… 
URL: http://www.virginiagasprices.com/index.aspx?area=Ashburn
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The above calculation shows that even if we convert US Dollars @ Rs 55 the difference between the prices of 1 litre of petrol in US and Delhi, India is definitely Rs 19/- approx. This difference in Kolkata and Chennai, India would be Rs 23.343.

But, this is not the real difference; the real difference is rather between US Unit Currency 0.9854 and India Unit currency 77.54 = Unit currency 76.5546. We should rather think practical and accept the fact that the difference in the prices of petrol between US and India is of 76.60 unit currency per litre. 

We should review the basic economic policies followed in respect of petrol prices; because, petrol is the life line, in real sense, of any modern country. If we look at the government taxation for petrol in India, we will find that it is almost 100% of the basic price of Rs 42.57 at which the Indian Government supply petrol to the dealers. Against this basic price the taxation, including the dealer’s profit, comes out to be Rs 34.97. Please see the break-up in the successive lines. 

It is reported that the approximate breakup of the pricing of petrol in Kolkata and Chennai, India is as follows:
  
Basic Price of Petrol - Rs 42.57
42% Government taxes – Rs 33.47
Dealers profit of Rs 1.50 
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Total Price of Petrol - Rs  77.54 (Kolkata and Chennai, India)
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Conclusion:

It is evidently clear that the sky-rocking prices of petrol in India are basically due to the arbitrary imposition of taxes on this essential commodity. Being one of the most essential commodities, petrol should have been considered for special consideration by the government at the time of imposing taxes. Petrol should not be used as a revenue generating commodity. 

In spite of the above fact the Indian government has decontrolled petrol and left the commodity to the petroleum companies to market it at their convenience. Nevertheless, the government has not reduces the taxes on the same and continued to be a silent spectator watching Rs 42.57 worth of petrol being sold at an unbelievable price of Rs 77.54 per litre. 

I appeal to the Government of India and to all the State Governments in India to reduce taxes on petrol in order to bring it to a price less than Rs 50/- per litre.

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18 May 2012

IIT JEE 2012 Results Announced on 18 May 2011

                                        IIT Kharagpur

Enter your Application Form Number, Registration Number and Date of Birth
and get your result instantly...

Click here to know your result
URL: http://jee.iitm.ac.in/orsdisplay/index.php

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15 May 2012

TV Review: Satyamev Jayate (Truth Alone Prevails) Amir Khan’s Maga Show on Door Darshan and Star Plus


© Harish Jharia 

Introduction:

We have been observing film stars and other celebrities anchoring TV shows, mainly reality shows. From reality shows… what I understand is those shows where the common viewers also participate. Firstly they strive to fetch a place among the participants and secondly compete in the show to win prizes.

These are purely commercial shows and the public images of the film stars are utilized by the TV channels for hitting the highest TRP and earn more and more revenue out of commercial advertisements, popularly known as sponsorships. 

We cannot tag ‘Satyamev Jayate’ with the term reality show or commercial show. I would rather call it a social program, of course not a documentary,  in which a huge team of social workers along with Amir Khan ventures out in Indian cities, villages, slums, lanes, bi-lanes and streets in search of truth. Truth, which is deliberately concealed and kept under-wraps by us all, just due to social prejudices and civic compulsions prevailing in our families, societies and countrywide.

The title "Satyameva Jayate" (सत्यमेव जयते) is a Sanskrit expression that means ‘Truth alone triumphs’ or ‘Truth Alone Prevails’. This slogan is inscribed at the bottom of the national emblem of Indian republic and depicts the basic philosophy of Indian heritage and the character of its people.

The program:

"Satyameva Jayate" started showing on Star Plus and Door Darshan TV channels along with many other regional channels in Hindi and in the respective regional languages. The telecast schedule of "Satyameva Jayate" is weekly on every Sunday, at 11 am. Premered on 6 May 2012, there have been 2 episode of "Satyameva Jayate" shown on Sunday mornings.

The first episode was based on the deep rooted social stigma of ‘female foeticide’, ‘कन्या भ्रूण ह्त्या’ (abortion of female foetus) and was titled as ‘Daughters are precious’. The subject of the second episode was ‘Sexual Abuse of Children’, ‘बच्चों का यौन शोषण’ titled as ‘Break the Silence’.

Episode 1: Daughters are precious

Female fotiside is the most heinous crime that is committed on a large percentage of pregnant women in many countries in the Indian subcontinent where emigrants of British India have settled. This cruel and inhuman tradition is being practiced for more than a century among these people. It is believed that there are many reasons due to which baby girls are killed in their mother’s womb. 

Following are a few of the main reasons:
  1. The first reason is that we Indians believe that only sons use to carry the legacy of their parents because of the mail dominated hierarchy.  Girls are not counted in the family tree because daughters are not considered as the part of family inheritance as they join the legacy of another family where they are married. 
  2. Gotra that is recognized as the name of the paternal lineage continues in the case of sons. Whereas, the Gotra of girls changes at the time of their marriage. The paternal Gotra of a girl is discarded at the time of her marriage and she is allotted the Gotra of her husband at the time of her marriage.
  3. Due to the above beliefs if you are a ‘Kachchhwahaa’ ‘कछवाहा’ Gotra, your sons and grandsons will carry the legacy of ‘Kachchhwahaa’ ‘कछवाहा’ Gotra. But, if you have only a daughter she will no longer be a ‘Kachchhwahaa’ ‘कछवाहा’ Gotra after har marriage. She will rather be baptized with the Gotra of her husband say ‘Nangiya’ ‘नांगिया’ at the time of her marriage.
  4. The second reason is the marathon exercise Indian parents have to go through, for the 'arranged-marriage' of their daughters. Indian parents have the tradition of searching for a suitable match for their sons and daughters in their own caste.
  5. The match is required to be from a Gotra other than that of their own.
  6. If you have a son you are expected to receive dowry from the parents of the bride. The dowry would include land property, house property, gold, jewelry, car, furniture, consumer durables and cash that may go to the extent of a few millions of Indian Rupees.
  7. On the other hand if you have a daughter, you will have to spend millions of Indian Rupees on all these dowry items even if you go bankrupt.
I remember one such case of dowry disaster, when I was posted at Machilipattanam, Andhra Pradesh, India. One of our family friends Venkat (imaginary name) was a landlord, who owned about four houses that he hired to tenants on rent. He also had about 50 hectare of farm-land and a big coconut orchard.
The women of Venkat’s family used to wear expensive gold and diamond jewelry and move in luxury cars. They had everything that anybody would dream to have. But, the only thing that they did not have was a son. Instead they had 4 daughters.

In short, I would like to tell the climax of Venkat’s story that the multimillionaire, who was regarded as the wealthiest person in that area, was eventually reduced to a lower middle class poor man within a span of four years. This downfall descended successively with the marriages of each of his daughters, year after year. Venkat’s entire wealth, assets and money exhausted completely with the conclusion of the marriage of his youngest daughter. Moreover, I got the severe most shock when I saw Venkat shifting to one of his own houses as its tenant.

Such situation is prevailing in all the parts of India and that is the reason why people are scared of having daughters. The social stigma has turned-out to be a gender biased crime while opting between sons and daughters. Today, in more than 2 Indian states the ratio between the population of unmarried men and women continues to be 1000 : 750 (approx).

Episode 2: Break the Silence

The second episode of "Satyameva Jayate” was about sexual abuse of children in India. Child abuse is an integral part of joint family system where people of three to four generations use to live together.

In this episode of "Satyameva Jayate” the problem of child abuse has been discussed in details. It has been brought to the knowledge of the viewers that the victims are the children of both the genders. Similarly, the abusers also belong to both the genders. They may be of any age young or old and might commit the crime encroaching across delicate relations including blood relations.

This subject is so very delicate and sensitive that I would better opt not to discuss on this site. I would rather advise visitors to watch the "Satyameva Jayate” episodes on their official web site.  

Here is the link to "Satyameva Jayate”:  

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05 May 2012

Hindu Religion: No Babas, No Ammas… Connect Directly to Your God… Ambaji Ki Aarti

      The Sigh Vahini Mother Ambe ji

© Harish Jharia

I do not know whether we Hindus are innocent or superstitious, so much so that, any tom, dick and harry can come in the guise of a Baba or Amma and become our mentor. We accept them as another incarnation of our Gods, install their photo in our pooja room and start worshiping them religiously. 

We do not hesitate to put them at an equivalent level of that of Rama, Krishna, Durga and Shiva. 

I appeal my Hindu brethren not to follow Babas and Ammas emerging frequently, across the country with mushrooming followers of thousands of disciples.  We are religious people and we should not let any Baba or Amma to come in between us and our lord (Rama, Krishna, Durga or Shiva).
Let us connect with our lord directly… one to one…
We are publishing religious material for Hindu readers, on Discover Life that will help them in worshiping their Lord all by themselves.

Here is the Prayer of Devi Ambaji…

आरती: श्री अंबा जी की
  1. जय अंबे गौरी, मैया जय श्यामा गौरी। तुमको निश-दिन ध्यावत, हरि ब्रह्मा शिवजी॥ जय॥
  2. मांग सिंदूर विराजत, टीको मृग मद को। उज्ज्वल से दोउ नैना, चांद्र वदन नीको॥ जय॥
  3. कनक समान कलेवर, रक्तांबर राजे। रक्त-पुष्प गल माला, कण्ठन पर साजे॥ जय॥
  4. केहरि वाहन राजत, खड्ग खपर धारी। सुर-नर, मुनि-जन सेवक, तिनके दुख हारी॥ जय॥
  5. कानन कुण्डल शोभित, नासाग्रे मोती। कोटिक चंद्र दिवाकर, राजत सम ज्योती॥ जय॥
  6. शुम्भ-निशुम्भ विडारे, महिषासुर धाती। धूमृ विलोचन नैना, निश दिन मदमाती॥ जय॥
  7. चण्ड-मुण्ड संहारे, शोणित बीज हरे। मधु कैटभ दोउ मारे, सुर भयहीन करे॥ जय॥
  8. ब्रह्माणी रुद्राणी, तुम कमला रानी। आगम-निगम बखानी, तुम शिव पटरानी॥ जय॥
  9. चौंसठ योगिनी गावत, नृत्य करत भैरों। बाजत ताल मृदंगा, और बाजत डमरू॥ जय॥
  10. भुजा चार अति शोभित, वर मुद्रा धारी। मनवांछित फ़ल पावत, सेवत नर-नारी॥ जय॥
  11. कंचन थाल विराजत, अगर कपुर बाती। मालकेतु में राजत, कोटि रतन ज्योती॥ जय॥
  12. अंबे जी की आरति, जो कोइ जन गावे। कहत शिवानंद स्वामी, सुख संपति पावे॥ जय॥
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