” Happy Krishna Janmashtami 2019 ” – August 23, 2019.

” Be a  ‘Rama’  at home ;  and  Be a  ‘Krishna’  outside ”  –  is how every individual should strive to live in life.

          “Rama”  is our model of family and values;  and  “Krishna”  is our model of knowledge and application.

          Today,  as  we  celebrate  Lord  Krishna’s birthday, we should sharpen our knowledge and application too in any new endeavor.

          When individuals, specially youth, take on active role in their learning by recognizing they are as accountable as knowledge imparters , administrators,  or leaders in any field for their success ;  and demonstrate that responsibility by making their own choices/actions leading towards their overall life goals – it may well be admitted that they have performed their  “Duty”  exceptionally well. This is what is emphasized by Lord Krishna and expected of every individual in this new age. 

          An ideal individual/citizen is one with full awareness of his/her duties – during his/her early years at home, in school, in the community that he/she is part of, and in the nation that he/she is part of as a responsible citizen. He/she alone can reform the System and Society ;  its ethical and moral behavior ; its  principles and practices ;  even while finding ways for the betterment of themselves and all other individuals/citizens. This is  ‘karma’.

          Let us resolve that  ‘Honesty, Fairness,  Courage,  Accountability, Compassion and Respect’  form the crux of the character of every individual on this auspicious day.

To quote from Bhagavad-Gita – ” samo damas tapah saucam ksantir arjavam eva ca, jnanam vijnanam astikyam brahma-karma svabhava-jam ”  _  Chapter 18, text 42.

          Lord Krishna explains :  ” Peacefulness, self control, austerity, purity, tolerance, honesty,  knowledge, wisdom, and religiousness – these are the natural qualities by which, specially, brahmins work.

          By worship of the Lord, who is the source of all beings, and who is all-pervading,  a man can attain perfection through performing his own work.

          Lord Krishna advised Arjuna not to be inactive,  but he perform his  ‘prescribed duty’  without being attached to the result. Krishna neither says  ‘you do the action’ ,  nor says  ‘you  act’.  He only says,  “let action happen”,  “don’t think of yourself as the doer”.  Doing takes place by Lord’s play.  Chapter 3,  4,  and  5  of Baghwad-Gita is against  doership. Things only happen through individuals when  ‘God plays the game’  and we as individuals need to stay focused and centered while letting things happen. This is how every system works – the prime lesson that every individual,  every student,  every manager,  every administrator,  every judge,  every politician,  every faculty,  and every leader in this universe should understand,  follow,  and practise in life.

          This is the key principle/ideal that should be ringing in the ears of all on this auspicious day. 

 

   ” Dieu avec nous “

   Friday,  August 23, 2019 – 7.19 p.m. (IST)

   Tidbit :  ” About 5.2 million individuals in the world share Lord’s birthday, today “.

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” Is GE in Trouble ? ” – August 16, 2019.

Is GE set to toe the line of Enron and WorldCom with big accounting fraud ? Harry Markopolos and his team of investigators say that the accounting fraud that GE has set is to the extent of $ 38 billion, equivalent to more than 40% of GE’s market capitalisation. It is likely to make the company file for bankruptcy, he also added. The company, however, denies the report firmly and terms it a market manipulation with false statements and claims made without checking with the company ahead of its publication.

          Understated liabilities in its insurance unit and improper accounts of investment in Baker Hughes were the financial problems cited. GE  CEO, Larry Culp,  who has been promoting efforts to reduce risk in finance operations ;  fixing the power-equipment  unit ;  and adopting measures to recover $ 200 billion lost in GE’s market value in the last two years has staunchly defended the accounting process at GE. GE will not collapse is my view.

          The accusation by Harry Markopolos has prompted a parallel to be drawn to the failures of Enron and WorldCom in the early years of this new millennium. 

          1.  Enron scandal, revealed on 26 October 2001, shook the US  economy and brought to the fore the key aspects of ethics and internal control. From a remarkably successful National Gas Company with revenues of $ 13.2 billion (in 1990) to its reported losses of $ 618 million in the 3rd Quarter in October 2001 leading to bankruptcy, Enron’s fall was staggering.

          Its stock market price of about $ 90 in 1990 to 61 cents in November 2001 ;  Enron succeeding GE as the winner of Fortune magazine’s best managed company of America in 1990 to being delisted from NYSE in 2001 ;  mark its massive failures. 

          Sherron Watkins,  former VP, was the whistleblower who wanted Enron to come clean about potentially disastrous accounting frauds or face implosion. A ‘crooked company’, she said.

          From its ‘mark to market’  method of accounting boosting its projected earnings with tremendous shape to the Special Purpose Entities that protected the company from tax hiding debt fraudulently to its peril , Enron’s violation of Accounting rules became a glaring example of unethical behavior in business. Ethics in business became the new call in business.

          It is a multiple failure of management, auditor, analyst, creditor/bankers, and regulators. Greed and Collusion of key participants acted in defiance against a system they created ; lack of checks and balances for decision making structure of accounting remained exposed. Enron collapsed.

          2.  Largest accounting fraud amounting to $ 11 billion caused WorldCom, the telecom giant, to fail in 2004. This was one of the biggest bankruptcies that came close on the heels of Enron fraud.

          Cynthia Cooper, an American accountant and VP of Internal Audit at WorldCom, unearthed the fraud in 2002, that caused ultimately the collapse of WorldCom in 2006.

          The company transferred more than $ 3.8 billion in  “line cost”  expenses to its capital accounts over 5 quarters.

          In July 2002 it filed for bankruptcy, largest corporate bankruptcy in US history with assets of $ 107 billion and debts of $ 41 billion at the time of filing.

          Solution :  Experts opine that Private Securities Action Claim Suits would help deter companies from engaging in the sorts of risks that caused WorldCom’ s  downfall, as well as provide adequate compensation to those whose networth is wiped out in the process.

 

   ” Dieu avec nous “

   Friday,  August 16, 2019 –  12.09 p.m.  (IST).

   Tidbit  :  ” GE stock stood 11%  lower – the biggest drop since 2008  –  ending the day (Thursday)  at  $ 8.01 per share.”

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” Sonia Gandhi Crowned Again ” – August 10, 2019.

Congress Working Committee finally decided to crown Sonia Gandhi with the responsibility holding the position of Interim Congress President at 11.10 p.m. tonight.

          The party chose experience and practical wisdom over youth and aggression.

          People of this generation (new age) feel that they have strongly and fatally been hit by fraud, deceipt, greed, and corruption while being angry about the lack of values and ethics in Politics at different levels.

          For the Congress party, the road to revival and recovery is torturous ;  never would Congress have expected more of Leadership than now ;  and to reinvent the party they need to be able to cope with altered aspirations of people swiftly. Common tendency of human beings to behave differently in pressure situations is probably what caused its failure in 2019 general election.

          Congress party may have come under fire for the mistakes they made, but people still respect Congress even though it hasn’t proved to be the national best in recent years.

          The party’s  raison d’être  is  to ensure it’s presence, sustainability and offer good things to people, create a future for citizens that rival parties cannot –  all to maintain the general good even while lifting its image and prestige.

          Hence, the choice of  “experience and practical wisdom”  as chief requirements for the interim president. Experience is well known and obvious. Practical wisdom is the tacit knowledge enabling leaders to make prudent judgements and take actions based on the actual situation, guided by values, ethics, and morals. This is akin to Indian concept of ‘yukta’ which connotes  ‘just right’. That Sonia Gandhi possesses these two traits cannot be doubted. Her goal will be to  ‘serve people and enhance society’s well being’  while shying away from excess and greed.

          Congress may well be an exemplar of a fresh approach to politics with all its leaders imbuing it with a purpose marked  “social good”,  “common good”,  or  “citizen’s good”.

          Congress needs to set its sights high and the best way to do it is to set emphasis on ‘ethical and moral purpose in every one of its program/policy’.

          In addition to bringing peace, prosperity, and progress (of citizens and the nation as a whole) utilising the resources, infrastructure, and people, the party should emphasize that its actions are guided by  “values, ethics, and morals”. They coexist.

          Every leader of Congress is a member of the Society first before one of the party leaders, is the feeling to be created.

          To achieve the above, three elements are needed :  1.  Preserving the Experience of Congress :  I always feel that the experience of a failure is much more powerful, strong, and rewarding for success. The experiences to criticism ;  being pushed around early on issues ;  being refused the title of leader of Opposition ;  feeling financial bankruptcy in strength of party resources – are just a few to cite. The lessons learned will make for new strategies automatically.  2.  Preserving the ‘Soul’ of Congress :  The history of 134 years must have yielded hundreds of principles that the party can group and call as  “Soul”  of the party. Putting ideas into practice through policies/programs ;  changing the livelihood of citizens with programs and action plans ;  meaningful contribution to the community/society ;  recording excellent performance in different sectors of the economy ;  punishing the misconduct and wrongdoings of individuals ;  demanding a certain level of morals in every program implementation – all these contribute to principles making the  “Soul”. These need to be highlighted vigorously.  3.  Always Excellence for Congress :  This is the need of the hour for the party. The standards of ‘excellence’ in every program that is pursued shall be set high without any relaxation for cutting corners. “Set Perfection as the Goal, so you can achieve Excellence”  should form the by word. In every program, project or action, the leaders should see the next process, next action, and next generation with attention and perseverance.

          Conclusion :  Since the 2019 election results (May 23, 2019),  Congress sported the right path of purpose :  first, by exhibiting their frustrations by verbal rants, criticisms, and accusations (some even shifting loyalty through desertions) ;  second, by exhibiting their understanding of each other’s feelings and even empathising (stubborn insistence of resignation with acceptance of responsibility for the loss by Rahul Gandhi, followed by a few other leaders);  and  third,  by making an unexpected, inductive leap arriving at a unanimous selection of Sonia Gandhi as Interim President of the Congress, even while overcoming all personal setbacks.

          Congress Party achieved this in its  CWC  meeting tonight.

 

   “Dieu avec nous”

   Sunday, August 11, 2019 –  4.49 p.m. (IST)

   Tidbit :  ”  Will Sonia Gandhi be able to do some supernatural things ?”

 

 

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” Artificial Intelligence – 101 – An Application to ‘Revoking Article 370’ ” – August 10, 2019.

 

          After 70 years of our national leaders from every political spectrum have scanned through but failed to etch their stamp independently or together, this moment of triumph in finding and implementing a lead to the solution of the Kashmir problem has finally hit the stage on August 5, 2019.

          A moment like this in Indian politics is exceedingly rare but highly beneficial to people’s rights and privileges.

          We had no sign to believe that this was going to happen. It is a revolutionary move that will likely alter the course of development in the territories with life-changing economical outpouring in all sectors of growth.

          People still remain puzzled at the sudden development –  ‘Revoking Article 370’  –  as depicted in the Figure below : 

The Figure represents ‘ people’s puzzledom to ‘Revoking Article 370’ ‘ with the three elements of India’s position,  Pakistan’s position,  and the International Opinion.

          India’s  position  :  (a)  It is a Democratic decision ;  (b)  India’s legislatures (Lok Sabha, and Rajya Sabha) passed it duly ;  (c)  India’s President gave assent to it ;  (d)  It is purely India’s internal matter ;  (e)  In doing this India adopts a statesman like posture ;  (f)  It can now unleash jihad poison that has been terrorising people ;  and  (g)  There are 180 million Muslims in India. Only 7 million in the Kashmir valley. They can now take a lesson and follow other Muslims who have embraced India sincerely.

          Pakistan’s position  :  (a)  Average population in India remain surprised at India’s sudden decision ;  (b)  Opportunity for due consultations have been missed ;  (c)  The decision speaks of Hindu ideology ;  (d)  It is the fundamental agenda to the exclusion of Muslims ;  (e)  Kashmiris should have been given their right to plebiscite according to UN 1948/49, this was endorsed by Nehru after several other resolutions ;  (f)  Pakistan’s downgrading of diplomatic ties probably to send the message – normal ties seem strained now; tension seem high now; military conflict also seem possible ;  and  (g) Bound to have reactions within the valley itself, not necessarily by Pakistan (Tariq Firzada).

          International Opinion :  (a)  UN calls for calm and restraint by the parties ;  (b)  Need de-escalation, say many international organisations;  and  (c) Have dialogue, Live and let live say many.

          A thought occurs to my mind that can possibly leverage  ‘Artificial Intelligence’  tools to measure  ‘people perception’  of this historic move and suggest ways and means of improving people acceptance and collaboration to the government in this process. I do fully recognise that mimicking social, emotional, and highly creative abilities of human are not in the realm of Artificial Intelligence at this moment in its evolution.

          What if academic institutions and researchers engage in building upon the Computer Power,  Data,  and  Algorithmic advances to strike a new path to quantify ‘People perception’  and identify factors to enhance their collaboration to achieve peace, prosperity, and progress in J&K ?

          Here’s a skeletal framework that I offer :

          Figure below represents a simplistic  view of Artificial Intelligence application to ‘Revoking Article 370’  with range and ease/severity as elements to build.

Figure below represents a simplistic view of Artificial Intelligence application to ‘Revoking Article 370’  with  impact as element to build.

Figure below represents a simplistic view of Artificial Intelligence application to ‘Revoking Article 370’  with  social perception as the element to build.

          Consideration of any, some, all the below mentioned variables may be in order. They are: 1.  Area of Jammu : 29% of total area of J&K ;  2.   Area of Ladakh : 55% of total area of J&K ;  3.  Area of Kashmir valley : 15% of total of J&K; 4.  Population of Jammu : 54 lakhs ;  5. Population of Ladakh :  3 lakhs ;  6. Population of Kashmir valley : 68 lakhs ;  7. Population of Sikhs : 2,34,000 ;  8. Population of Buddhists : 1,12,000 ;  9. Population of Christians : 35,000 ;  10. Population of Jains  : 12,000 ;  11. Health facilities ;  12.  Education facilities ;  13. Food, shelter, and clothing ;  14.  Essential Services ;  15.  Communication facilities ;  16. Financial Services ;  and  17. Economic upliftment.

          Conclusion :  It may be stated that the decision to  ‘Revoking Article 370’  signals a positive change in the general attitude of people of India at this juncture ;  resistance from Pakistan and UN’s advice to maintain calm and restraint by the parties also noted ;  they point, however, to the unpredictable nature of relationships as at present due mainly to the internal and external uncertainties that shroud the decision itself.  Respect for Peace, Compassion, and Morality need to be assigned the highest order of priority. This alone will constitute a  ‘game changer’  enabling peace, prosperity, and development in  J&K  in future.

 

   ” Dieu avec nous “

   Saturday, August 10, 2019 –  12.29 p.m. (IST)

   Tidbit :  ” Artificial Intelligence is a tech weapon in every nation’s ambition to be the ruling force “

 

 

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