Saturday, November 30, 2013
Friday, November 29, 2013
Lok Satta Party national President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan today demanded that the State Government take up without further delay diversion of the Godavari waters into the Krishna basin in the wake of the final award of the Brijesh Kumar Tribunal on the Krishna river waters dispute.
In a media statement, Dr. JP pointed out that the award has made matters worse for Andhra Pradesh. Andhra Pradesh had benefited immensely from the 1976 Bachawat Tribunal award which upheld the right of Andhra Pradesh, the lowest riparian State, to all the surplus waters in the Krishna. Andhra Pradesh also benefited as the Bachawat Tribunal allocated waters based on the 75% dependability factor.
The Brijesh Kumar Tribual, in contrast, allocated water going by the 65% dependability factor. The tribunal estimated the additional water available for allocation at 448 tmc ft and allocated it among all the three riparian States. Of this, Andhra Pradesh got 35 tmc ft as firm allocation and 145 tmc ft of surplus water. As a result, Andhra Pradesh has to forgo the right to utilize 268 tmc ft of surplus water.
With the Brijesh Kumar Tribunal allocating the surplus waters to Maharashtra and Karnataka also, Andhra Pradesh has now suffered a double disadvantage. In the last three decades and a half, Andhra Pradesh has failed to utilize the surplus waters, with all the parties and successive Governments engaged in vote bank politics whereas Maharashtra and Karnataka began to use more and more Krishna waters.
Dr. JP said there is no point in indulging in a blame game or in rousing false expectations among farmers. One should not repose too much faith in the Supreme Court overriding or relaxing the verdict, although an appeal may be necessary.
Dr. JP demanded that the State Government take immediate measures to divert as much water from the Godavari into the Krishna basin. Consequently, water from the Srisailam reservoir could be utilized to serve Rayalaseema and Telangana and from the Nagarjunasagar reservoir, the dry lands in Telangana and Coastal Andhra Pradesh.
The State Government should utilize the funds allocated under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) to augment groundwater table by harvesting every raindrop. The State has been squandering away almost Rs.5000 crore a year under the NREGS instead of using it to augment water resources. Attempts should be made to utilize all the water sources and avoid wastage through proper regulation.
The Government should offer incentives for raising less water intensive crops like oilseeds and pulses and provide marketing facilities.
Dr. JP said people should work together transcending their party and regional affiliations so that everyone stands to gain.
Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Surajya movement is taking up enrolment of voters in colleges as part of its mission to promote good governance.
The Steering Committee of Surajya Movement in a media statement said that, its volunteers would join the election commission’s voter enrolment drive in colleges up to December 10.
The Surajya volunteers will launch the drive in as many colleges as possible in association with local voter enrolment centres from November 28. A training program was conducted at the Collector’s office for the volunteers taking part in the drive in Ranga Reddy district on November 27.
Electoral reforms is part of the Surajya Movement which transcends party affiliations.
Monday, November 25, 2013
Lok Satta Party national President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan today described the Iran nuclear deal as a triumph of restraint, diplomacy and commonsense and congratulated US Secretary of State John Kerry, Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif and other key players.
The historic deal between Iran and the U.S., France, Britain, China, Russia and Germany, struck after tortuous negotiations on Sunday, seeks to curb Iran's nuclear development program in exchange for lifting some sanctions.
Dr. JP said in a media statement the U.S. acted with foresight and wisdom in brokering the nuclear deal with Iran and the chemical weapons deal with Syria. “The world cannot afford a war now.”
Dr. JP said India has a lot to gain from stability and peace in West Asia. “We need to promote our energy security through diplomacy.”
(To know more about Dr. JP’s views on latest developments, please click http://www.twitter.com/jp_loksatta)
Sunday, November 24, 2013
Lok Satta Party national President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan today called upon people not to excuse but teach a lesson to the UPA which in its 10-year rule has destroyed the economy, perpetuated poverty and indulged in corruption and posed a threat to the federal character of the nation.
Addressing the seventh annual conference of the State Lok Satta Party, Dr. JP asked youth, farmers and women to shed their silence, plunge into politics and fight for good governance.
Party leaders from all over the State as also delegates from party units in other States attended the conference. As Dr. JP noted, the party was holding its first annual conference after conducting organizational elections through secret ballot.
At the outset, Dr. JP referred to the losses inflicted by successive cyclones on Andhra Pradesh and asked farmers not to lose heart but fight against the Government which has let them down. Although the Prime Minister, at the request of the Lok Satta Party, had promised assistance, the State did not submit proposals for strengthening flood banks of the Krishna and the Godavari. It has not bothered to improve the drainage facilities for the last 25 years. Although nearly Rs.5000 crore is spent on the rural employment guarantee scheme in the State, no attempt has been made to harvest rainwater. The State continues to be ravaged by floods in the rainy season and drinking water scarcity in the summer.
Dr. JP came down heavily on the Government for failing to address the growing unemployment problem. While China has created 20 crore jobs in the last 20 years, India has created a mere 20 lakh jobs in the same period, although 1.2 crore people are joining the ranks of the unemployed every year.
Dr. JP said that the Union Government is behaving like a monarch in going ahead with its decision to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh without bringing about a comprehensive and amicable understanding among people of different regions. The Center cannot keep the State united or bifurcate it forcibly. Creation of a new State is going to be neither a catastrophe nor a panacea for people’s problems. Taking advantage the situation, some leaders are promising jobs to all those who passed the tenth class, distribution of three acres of land to each landless family and irrigation of thousands of acres of land by making the water defy gravity.
Dr. JP asked party leaders to conduct a people’s ballot in every village and ward in the next few weeks to find out whether they would like Delhi to take decisions on splitting the Telugu people or they themselves should decide on the issue.
Dr. JP listed the many achievements accomplished by the Lok Satta movement and party. It enabled Andhra Pradesh farmers to gain Rs.3600 crore by launching a peaceful agitation against restrictions on inter-State movement of paddy and rice. If India has emerged as the largest exporter of agricultural produce in the world today, the credit goes to the Lok Satta for its fight against ban on exports. Although the party does not have a single member in Parliament and has only a lone member in the State Assembly, it has been instrumental in the ushering in of electoral reforms ranging from enrolment of voters to disclosure of candidates’criminal antecedents, the passage of laws on limiting the Cabinet size, preventing detections, appointment of a Judicial Commission, the right to information and guaranteeing autonomy to cooperatives.
Pointing out that the nation is going through a crisis, Dr. JP called upon people not to remain silent but use the Lok Satta as their platform for seeking a better future. He listed many issues on which they should blow the whistle (the party’s election symbol) and seek justice. They should demand decentralization of power, provision of Government services as a matter of right, elimination of corruption, safety and security of women, restriction of liquor consumption, implementation of the SC and ST Sub-Plans, quality education and healthcare for all, and provision of skills and employment opportunities.
Dr. JP hoisted the national and party flags. State Lok Satta Party President Katari Srinivasa Rao said the conference would decide on the course of the party in the next one year. Mr. Ravi Maruth welcomed the delegates.
Mr. Surendra Srivatsava, national General Secretary and party leaders from Maharashtra and Karnataka took part in the conference.
Saturday, November 23, 2013
The Lok Satta Party has drawn up a day-long program for its seventh annual conference at Classic Gardens in Secunderabad on Sunday, November 24. Nearly 3000 party leaders from all over the State will take part in the conference.
With general elections hardly six months away, the party at its annual conference will ponder over its electoral strategy. It will also focus its attention on the political crisis brewing in the State over the Union Government’s decision to bifurcate the state.
The conference begins with the hoisting of the national and party flags by the party’s national President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan and lighting of the lamp by Mahila Satta leaders.
After introductory remarks by State Lok Satta Party President Katari Srinivasa Rao, Dr. JP will be addressing the conference at 11-00 a.m.
Thereafter, there will be a discussion on a number of resolutions to be adopted at the conference. They deal with organizational matters, an action program on people’s problems, empowerment of local governments, and problems of farmers, women, youth and weaker sections.
Lok Satta Party national General Secretary Surendra Srivatsava and party delegates from other States will address the conference.
After discussion on a political resolution, Dr. JP will deliver the valedictory address at 4-00 p.m.
There will be cultural programs both in the morning and in the afternoon.
Friday, November 22, 2013
Thursday, November 21, 2013
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Lok Satta Party national President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan will be addressing a meeting on the ‘Role of State and civil society in disaster prevention and mitigation’ at Jubilee Hall in Public Gardens at 4-30 p.m. on Thursday, November.
CASA (Churches’ Auxiliary for Social Action), the relief agency for National Council of Churches in India, is organizing the inter-faith meeting.
The meeting is being held in the wake of destruction unleashed by a series of cyclones and floods in Andhra Pradesh in the recent past.
Tuesday, November 19, 2013
The Lok Satta Party will draw up an action plan to address people’s problems at its seventh annual conference at Classic Gardens in Secunderabad on November 24.
Disclosing this at a media meet here today, State Lok Satta Party President Katari Srinivasa Rao said that with the administration paralyzed for the last four years, there has been no meaningful discussion on issues ranging from suicides by farmers and weavers and havoc caused by natural calamities to growing unemployment and spiraling prices, leave alone attempts at addressing them.
The conference will also focus gearing up the party to face the 2014 elections and strengthening the organization under the direction of its national President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan.
Mr. Srinivasa Rao said that party leaders from the village to the State level in Andhra Pradesh as also from other States will take part in the conference.
Mr. Srinivasa Rao released a poster concerning the annual conference.
Lok Satta Party Vice President A. Ramesh Reddy, Secretary Eeda Chennaiah and Greater Hyderabad unit President Dosapati Ramu took part in the media meet.
Saturday, November 16, 2013
Lok Satta Party national President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan will be taking part in a public meeting in Mumbai on Sunday, November 17.
The Maharashtra unit of the Lok Satta Party is organizing the meeting to enlighten people on the Nagar Raj Bill being considered by the State Government.
The Bill seeks to decentralize city administration and associate citizens in the decision making process.
The Union Government has made it mandatory for all States to enact the law to get funds for infrastructure development under the JNNURM.
The Bill envisages constitution of ward committees and area sabhas and devolution of funds and powers on them.
Among those taking part in the meeting are retired police officer Julio F. Ribeiro, former Maharashtra Chief Secretary D. M. Sukhtankar, Lok Satta Party national General Secretary Surendra Srivastava and Maharashtra unit President Dr. Kedar Diwan.
Thursday, November 14, 2013
Lok Satta Party national President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan has counseled the UPA Government against using police for waging political battles.
In a media statement here today, Dr. JP referred to Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde ordering an investigation into funding for the Aam Aadmi Party and said “such selective investigation is bizarre and lacks credibility” considering that traditional parties spend billions of rupees of unaccounted money on vote buying.
“Harassing a movement for clean politics is absurd and will deter reformers.” The Congress has to introspect whether politics is about status quo or change for the better.
Dr. JP said the Prime Minister is both right and wrong in his remarks on the CBI on its anniversary. “The CBI cannot second-guess policy but it cannot be the Government’s poodle either.”
Some of CBI’s actions like registering an FIR against retired Coal Secretary P. C. Parakh for allocating a coal block to Hindalco exceed their brief and smack of recklessness. “Criminalizing bona fide actions is plain wrong.”
Dr. JP said the CBI should concern itself about bribery, fraud and mala fide actions. It has no business to supervise the Government or review its policies. That is Parliament’s prerogative.
The Prime Minister is, however, wrong in saying investigation and prosecution should be under the executive. The rule of law should apply to all equally.
Investigation and prosecution should be autonomous, but accountable to a strong, credible body. Or else police become the Government’s private force.
“But we cannot allow the police to run amok. There should be strong safeguards and accountability. Rogue police is worse than Government control.”
(To know more about Dr. JP’s views on latest developments, please click http://www.twitter.com/jp_loksatta)
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
The Lok Satta Party will be celebrating its seventh anniversary at Classic Gardens in Secunderabad on Sunday, November 24.
Members of the party’s State General Council as also constituency-level executive committees and town and mandal-level leaders will take part in the annual conference.
The conference will discuss the paralysis in administration in the State and the games being played by traditional political parties with an eye on votes and seats and chart out a course of action for the party.
In a media statement, party General Secretary P. Ravi Maruth said that the conference would discuss action programs on people’s burning issues and measures to strengthen and gear up the party for the 2014 general elections.
He called upon party workers and sympathisers to make the annual conference a success.
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Lok Satta Party national President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan and a team of senior leaders will be meeting the Parliamentary Standing Committee on The Judicial Appointments Commission Bill, 2013, in New Delhi on Wednesday, November 13.
It may be recalled that the Constitution (120th Amendment) Bill, 2013 providing for creation a Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) is the culmination of the initiative taken by the Lok Satta.
The Lok Satta had brought together three eminent jurists of unimpeachable integrity and credibility to come up with proposals for judicial appointments and constitution of an Indian Judicial Service. The three judges – Chief Justice M. N. Venkatachalaiah, Chief Justice J. S. Verma and Justice V. R. Krishna Iyer – produced a report recommending formation of a National Judicial Commission for appointment of judges in higher courts and an Indian Judicial Service for competitive, nation-wide recruitment of judges at the district judge level.
The Bill, already adopted by the Rajya Sabha, is a modified version of the proposals made by the three eminent judges. It associates the executive, legislature and judiciary in the appointment of higher judges and does away with the system of the Supreme Court appointing judges of higher courts.
The Lok Satta has all along maintained that usurpation of the power to appoint judges by the Supreme Court is plainly unconstitutional, and violates the principle of checks and balance in relation to organs of the State. The system in practice has been found to be unsatisfactory and undermining the quality and credibility of the judiciary.