Enthusiasm is excitement with inspiration, motivation, and a pinch of creativity. The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails. Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.

If you don't create change, change will create you. Change starts when someone sees the next step and the first step toward change is awareness. The second step is acceptance. Many fine things can be done in a day if you don't always make that day tomorrow. You see, in life, lots of people know what to do, but few people actually do what they know. Knowing is not enough! You must take action.

Sometimes it's the smallest decisions with larger aims that can change the lives of many. If our attempts can at least become a spark. We are really grateful and the TEAM can proudly proclaim ‘MISSION ACCOMPLISHED’.

If you can LEND A HELPING HAND for the advancement of our country and its people be part of our ENDEAVOR.

Friday, January 28, 2011


The real shame of the 2011 Republic Day

By : Arjun.R.Shankar

In one part of this country everything was meticulously planned and arranged to showcase the valour and splendor of the 21st emerging global power—INDIA on the eve of 62nd Republic Day and on the other side was a man called Yashwant Sonawane an Additional Collector of Nasik, Maharashtra who chose to be an honest and upright man and had decided to discharge his duties with utmost sincerity and dignity. While discharging his duties even without a slightest equivocation, he was brutally burnt alive in broad daylight at a roadside eat-out at Manmad in Maharashtra’s Nasik district by the local mafia during raids to uncover illegal hoarding of kerosene and petrol.

Such a ghastly killing of a Collector is tragic and shocking and is beyond all canons of condemnation. On the eve of the Republic Day this reflects the real India, the present emerging India. An India dominated and quarterbacked by the deadly mafias. Such unbelievable but true instances about our country reminds me of the book written by Amit Bhaduri which is titled ‘The Face you were afraid to see’ in which he says that the image of India as an emerging global power is an illusion produced by private corporation which are the big players in the economic sphere.

The petrifying incident is a grim reminder of the fact that the mafias are assuming epic proportions in the system and are spreading their web in all fields.

These rancorous power mafias have barbarically shown their presence in food distribution, sugar, oil, electricity, roads, buildings, construction and many other fields. The list in this country goes unending. The whole society is encircled by the collusion of power mafias who dictate their terms and it’s always the common people like many of us who are on the receiving end. They are just the instruments of operations and on the top of the pyramid we have the top brass politicians, elites and the bureaucrats testifying an unholy and dreaded nexus. There is no doubt that in all cases there is a high level of political patronage which shields and insulates these mafias against penal actions which gives these criminals an extra edge.

These people commit such dastardly acts and we become accustomed to such bizarre and sinful acts of sold out politicians and dishonest bureaucrats that we soon forget these tragedies.

Why such incidents of disturbing magnitude happen in our country with calibrated regularity?

Now it’s high time to understand that there is a serious deficit in the whole system and that just cannot be simply attributed to a single person or institution as there are multiple entities involved. If we carefully scan through the root, the rot can be found. There is a serious failure of district administration, district magistrate and the police system because these so called dreaded mafias didn’t sprang up over a night. This orchestrated event is definitely going to raise fears and apprehensions among other upright officers, whistleblowers, human rights activist who are working relentlessly for the welfare and advancement of the people. It can raise fears for the innumerable NGO’s that are doing laudable works. Such an untimely incident can shake the confidence of many of them as this is the response which they might also get for being honest and upright. There are numerous other cases where innumerable officers and activists are facing series of ruthless and gruesome intimidations for their dedicated work. Many of the RTI workers have been seriously intimidated and even attacked.

Such attack simply undermines the very essence and the purpose of RTI. If you can ask a question and before the official reply the non official reply is a brazen attack, it is nothing but a callous undermining of the whole act.

The site where Mr Sonawane was burnt alivein broad day light

The group of whistleblowers and the activist called ‘MITRA’ is a classic testimony of this. It’s an acronym and that can simply tell things better. It means ‘Movement against Intimidation, Threat and Revenge against Activists’.

“This was formed under the initiative of activists who had to face such coward attacks says Sumaira Abdulali the convener of MITRA who herself is a victim of intimidation. She also categorically states that in the most cases the politicians have threatened them.

Another disturbing instance took place on August 2010 when the strong sand mafia in classic Taliban style attacked and stoned to death an activist named Ramdas Ghadkiokar in Maharashtra. He was a pioneer activist in uncovering various corrupt practices in PDS, fuel distribution and a strong battle against sand mafia.

A senior bureaucrat and a former cabinet secretary says that over the thirty years there were times when many honest officers were threatened to stop their concerted action against such mafias. Many settled with the ailing system in fear of losing their life and career and only some had the courage to fight back valiantly.

The rot in the system should be corrected and branding this is an inherent and endemic feature and difficult to cure is highly an unwarranted thought. At the grassroots level changes should be initiated and that should be followed to the highest level.

Wherever a mafia crime takes place there is a police station, there is a superintendent of police and there is a politician, so in such occasions the local police, district administration, politicians and other agencies should work in tandem for the ultimate good without favoritism. And the most important fact is to keep the administration and police out politics. In today’s scenario, it shouldn’t be made an arm of the state in real terms.

If we can address the deficits we can advance or else thousands of people like Yashwant Sonawane will pay the price of their honesty.

Whatever be the change, such a brazen act cannot be justified in a country like India. As India celebrates its 62nd republic day let’s hope that the real picture of India will change dramatically.

--- Team AKHSHAYAPTHRA extends its deepest sympathies to the bereaved family and friends of the victim----


  1. Shame India shame..!! we need selfless youth to turn around the globe!!!!! If you dont find anyone then turn yourself !!! @ vidhul

  2. arju, jijin here.. hats off 2 u. I was really stunned hearing dis news..
    cwg,adarsh,2g,cvc..corruption unlimited..,the disintegration of idols(k g balkrishnan},activists put behind bars(binayak sen) and the reddy and vedanta raj.. wr r v heading to??
    The panchayat clerk and the minister's gunman smiles only b4 'gandhi'..
    and alas,now indian civil service means ready 2 be a 'SHAHEED'


  3. Days after the brutal killing, more evidence has surfaced to show that no action was taken against Popat Shinde, the prime accused in his murder.The murder has blown the lid on the massive clout the oil mafia enjoys and how the administration is turning a blind eye to their lawlessness. The bigger thing, as the Maharashtra CM points out, is the DIFFERENCE between the kerosene prices given through the PDS and the cost when it is adulterated with diesel. The difference is so huge.

    It can be safe to assume that these Mafias have been running for a number of years and hence a number of administrations, why point our finger at one political party / person. The persons to blame are really us, for turning a blind eye to such racketeering, till it blows over and comes into the limelight. If ordinary people like us are aware that a deadly oil mafia exists, how come the government is behaving as if this is a new phenomenon? Either the government does not have the guts to tackle the mafia or its members are complicit in the racket. The CM has declared on TV that no one will be spared. Let us see if that is just another hollow govt promise.

  4. When an upright person like Yashwant Sonawane is immolated in broad daylight, it only depicts the power of mafias whose survival get support from the police and politicians. In a way we should all take some blame for something like this to happen. If he is to be honoured, it should not be in terms of some road named after him or statues and garlands, but rooting out all these mafia gangs.

  5. The first thing to do to tackle these hardcore criminals is strengthening the law and a faster judiciary.Criminals like popat shinde wouldn't hesitate to kill two more honest officers.The maximum punishment he might get is a life imprisonment of 12 years(death is given rarely) and it would take years for the court to deliver a sentence.The laws need to be harsher so that these murderers think twice before they commit such heinous acts.Honesty will never be rewarded in these times.But these changes might do some good for it.Only then will martyrs like Yashwant Sonawane's souls be at peace.
    The change should start from the base,the foundation.Then india can go on claiming itself to be a superpower,which it is right now only in terms of its consumption.

  6. It feels sad that a brutal attack and murder was the answer to someones sincerity!And sadder that we are helpless in front of the bloody corrupt politicians. India is no more ruled by democracy but by kleptocracy!!!

  7. Honesty, in every society,is a virtue which is bound to attract inconveniences. But such dastardly acts makes one wonder abt the very nature of contemporary India.
    The other day in my classroom, v had a discussion abt this concept called 'national character'. The Japaneese associated with hard work and obedience, the French with a romantic world view, the Americans with patriotic fervour...these are some of the traditional assumptions when it comes to national character. I had thought that it was all mindless stereotyping. But now I doubt it. May be there's something called national character after all. May be in the case of our nation it's the omnipresent and mind numbing phenomenon called Corruption! How else would one explain what happened to Mr.Yashwant Sonawane..? Caught amidst the all encompassing web of corruption and illegality, he had to pay the price of being honest in a dishonest society. Those who are upright has become incompatible in the current order of things because the very apex of the system has got a hunch of guilt and complicity. When Rajas and Kalmadis are calling the shots with spineless Manmohans backing them, people like Mr.Sonawane are doomed to be martyrs at the altar of conscience and morality.

  8. Every single human being with an iota of conscience will feel for the bereaved.... i waited to comment on this just to prove one point.. we have written an article here.. we have discussed about this incident at length.. de newspapers n de media made a huge hype out of it.. every major blog in india and abroad had a thread going....
    all this went on for a few days after the incident...but now?? 90% of the ppl who vehemently took part in the discussions does not even remember the name of that poor soul who was awarded de capital punishment for committing the biggest crime a govt official in a country like india can commit.. Being Honest!
    we have forgotten.. de govt and de ppl.... our blood is no longer boiling for that issue.. we are past it.. and we have moved onto the next issue that enrages us into spitting words…but never into any action… tht is how we are… yet we blame de whole world for what is happening around us and for not doing anythn about it…
    are we??