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2 February, 2013

Cool Breeze: Republic Day special

The Republic Day functions of late have become more of a ritual than celebration. But this function was something special as Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh hoisted National Tricolour at Digha Primary School located in the dense Saranda forest area of Chaibasa in Jharkhand. It was a special occasion for the local tribals. The national flag was not hoisted in the area in the last 20 years as the area was controlled by the Maoists. The forest has now been "liberated" from the Maoists as part of the Saranda Action Plan.

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26 January, 2013

If rules subvert justice, they need to be set aside

One of the many lessons taught to the nation by Mahatma Gandhi was that outcomes do not matter, procedures do. To paraphrase his words on means and ends, "means are after all, everything". Repeat, everything. Even if the ends are not served by means seen by votaries of the Mahatma as being the proper ones to be used, it does not matter. The use of specific means is much more important than any outcome or lack thereof.

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26 January, 2013

Why was Bose diminished on Republic Day?

We measure power through size. Check any political poster. The boss gets the biggest face. Others in the pecking order descend till the miniature at the end.

Why was Subhas Chandra Bose struggling among the also-rans in the Bengal Republic Day tableau? Swami Vivekananda, understandably, had pride of place. But it might have been better to keep Bose out of the jumble rather than literally reduce his stature. If Bengal forgets, how long will India remember the only Indian to head a government of united India?

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