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EDITORIALS

Black Tuesday
Unity is the antidote to terrorism
I
T’S difficult to miss the connection between the terrorist strikes in Mumbai and Srinagar. In the metropolis, the terrorists sought to cripple the suburban railway system, which is the lifeline of the city. 

Twin failures
Learn from errors to soar high
T
he failure of the GSLV launch vehicle and the loss of the INSAT-4C satellite, coming as it did soon after the failure of the first test launch of Agni-III has hit our sense of achievement and control over these important programmes. The GSLV launch vehicle, in particular, had already completed a series of so-called developmental flights, and this was its second operational flight – hence the designation F02.



EARLIER STORIES
Marry inter-caste without fear
July 11, 2006
Leave judiciary alone
July 10, 2006
Criminal justice reforms
July 9, 2006
Roll-back at Neyveli
July 8, 2006
The wrong doctor sacked
July 7, 2006
Out with the tainted
July 6, 2006
Exit B’Lal
July 5, 2006
Simply scandalous
July 4, 2006
Package for farmers
July 3, 2006
Politics of quota
July 2, 2006


Tragic headbutt
Violent end to a glorious career
T
he FIFA World Cup final was expected to be the icing on the cake of French captain Zinedine Zidane’s glorious career. The team had come thus far riding on his aging shoulders. But he turned the icing into wood-shaving by that tragic headbutt into Italian Marco Materazzi’s chest in the 110th minute. 

ARTICLE

Tigers’ tale of woe
After Sariska, it is the turn of Panna
by Brig Ranjit Talwar (retd)
D
uring the follow-up discussions after the Sariska debacle, some senior forest officers had opined that Sariska was an exceptional case of management failure that could neither be explained nor justified. They felt that had the hierarchy in Jaipur and Delhi not been taken completely by surprise, the tragedy could have been averted by deploying all possible resources to save the situation.

MIDDLE

Lessons in ‘real India’
by Sanjeev Singh Bariana
A
N immaculately dressed man entered an overcrowded bogie of Kalka Mail at the New Delhi railway station. He bent his body at all angles to get his seat number. “Can you please get up”, he said to an extremely thin man sporting a very dark complexion sitting next to the window and munching pan with a trickle down his lips on a side of his face.

OPED

Alternative action
JNU model can show way out of quota wrangle
by Smriti Kak Ramachandran
T
he debate over the proposed implementation of 27 per cent reservation for Other Backward Classes (OBCs) in institutions of higher learning has thrown up alternatives like Affirmative Action. The “Deprivation Points” given by Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) to a student from the Backward Classes or hailing from a backward region of the country is a case in point.

Zimbabwe’s 1200 per cent inflation
by Douglas Rogers
I
was introduced to the “Zimbabwean wallet” on my first day back in my home country. I needed to change 100 U.S. dollars into local currency. A friend called a number, asked for a man codenamed “Mashishe” and inquired what the day's rate was. Could he change $100?

J&K leads in job growth
D
espite being in the grip of militancy for more than a decade, Jammu and Kashmir has registered the highest rate of growth in total employment at 6.82 per cent in the country, according to the Economic Census 2005 conducted by the Central Statistical Organisation.

 

Editorial cartoon by Rajinder Puri


From the pages of

 

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Black Tuesday
Unity is the antidote to terrorism

IT’S difficult to miss the connection between the terrorist strikes in Mumbai and Srinagar. In the metropolis, the terrorists sought to cripple the suburban railway system, which is the lifeline of the city. And in Srinagar, they sought to cripple the tourist industry, which sustains the state, by targeting the tourists. In both cases, the intention is to wreck the economy. Obviously, the terrorists acted in tandem. Investigations alone will reveal whether the mastermind is the same. The blasts show that the terrorists are capable of coordinated action. The serial blasts are, therefore, a setback for the intelligence agencies, which failed to prevent the synchronised attacks in the two cities.

Mumbai was rocked by the blasts even before it could recover from the violence unleashed by the Shiv Sena cadres protesting against the desecration of a statue. Serial blasts have by now become one of the standard forms of terrorism as has been demonstrated in city after city in the world. There can, therefore, be no doubt about the identity of those who organised the attacks in such a meticulous manner. They are anti-nationals, whose only aim is to create political, economic and social instability. The scale at which the strikes were organised suggets that it is the handiwork of a major terrorist outfit with considerable resources of men and material. The needle of suspicion invariably turns to Pakistan from where men and material have been flowing into this country to create violence. Without such support, no serial blasts as that rocked Srinagar and Mumbai on Black Tuesday are possible.

While Pakistan needs to be warned against the consequences of abetting terrorism, all-out efforts are necessary to eliminate those who perpetrated the crime. This is possible only if the people are able to join hands to fight the menace of terrorism by providing intelligence inputs on all those who arouse suspicion. As in the past, this time, too, the people will remain united and face squarely the challenge posed by the terrorists, who need to know that however hard they try to break the unity of the people, they will never succeed in their sinister enterprise. Therein lies the future of India as a vibrant secular, democratic nation.

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Twin failures
Learn from errors to soar high

The failure of the GSLV launch vehicle and the loss of the INSAT-4C satellite, coming as it did soon after the failure of the first test launch of Agni-III has hit our sense of achievement and control over these important programmes. The GSLV launch vehicle, in particular, had already completed a series of so-called developmental flights, and this was its second operational flight – hence the designation F02. To press the self-destruct button and see it go down in balls of fire would indeed have been heart-breaking for the scientists, not to mention all Indians who have a stake in the success of this national endeavour. But we need to take it in our stride. ISRO has faced failures before, only to have their vehicles confidently soar into space again.

It has become routine to point out the inherent risks and uncertainties associated with launch and propulsion technologies, and the incidents of failure even in well established programmes in advanced countries. That only means, of course, that every calculation, every little sub-system, every little accessory has to be checked and rechecked. One can safely assume that experienced heads in ISRO are already working out what went wrong, and what caused the drop in pressure in one of the four strap-on motors in the first stage. Chairman G. Madhavan Nair has stressed that there is no major design flaw – that would indeed have constituted a setback, as the scientists would have had to go back to the drawing board. While the PSLV is now an established success with several operational flights, ISRO would be keen to give the GSLV, with its capability to put heavy satellites in geo-synchronous orbit, the same kind of track record.

As for Agni, India clearly needs a long range missile, capable of hitting targets 3,500 to 5000 kilometres away. This will enhance the credibility of our nuclear detriment, our second-strike capability, and the ability to make full use of our strategic depth. No effort must be spared to bring it on track, and the government must support DRDO in facilitating as many test launches as needed. 

 

 

Tragic headbutt
Violent end to a glorious career

The FIFA World Cup final was expected to be the icing on the cake of French captain Zinedine Zidane’s glorious career. The team had come thus far riding on his aging shoulders. But he turned the icing into wood-shaving by that tragic headbutt into Italian Marco Materazzi’s chest in the 110th minute. The particular incident has been played ad infinitum on TV screens all over the world. There is no one who has honestly justified that violent act of his. But at the same time, there is genuine curiosity as to what provoked him into this reckless action. Zidane himself is silent. People speaking on his behalf say he was provoked by a dirty comment passed by Marco. Till the French great himself speaks out, the mystery will remain. Perhaps, Marco too deserved to be punished for the words he allegedly uttered, but whatever the provocation, a sportsman playing at such a level is not expected to get physical the way Zidane did.

However, despite this incident, he duly got the Golden Ball award that he so richly deserved. He has played enough magical soccer to be counted among the greats. He may even try to justify what he did during his walk into the sunset, but his millions of admirers would always feel sore at his conduct.

There is a lesson in this for all budding sportsmen. They may become the greatest players in the world, but even this achievement will be meaningless without the strength of character. Settling scores through brute display of physical prowess may be all right for lesser beings, but humans are supposed to display dignity under all circumstances. Whatever the overall assessment about Zidane’s game may be 10 years from now, it will always be overshadowed by that ramming shame.

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Thought for the day

We are so made that we can only derive intense enjoyment from a contrast, and only very little from a state of things.

— Sigmund Freud

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Tigers’ tale of woe
After Sariska, it is the turn of Panna
by Brig Ranjit Talwar (retd)

During the follow-up discussions after the Sariska debacle, some senior forest officers had opined that Sariska was an exceptional case of management failure that could neither be explained nor justified. They felt that had the hierarchy in Jaipur and Delhi not been taken completely by surprise, the tragedy could have been averted by deploying all possible resources to save the situation.

Call it a coincidence or whatever you like, it just so happens that there is a similar case elsewhere offering a chance to the government to redeem its lost prestige over Sariska. And this time it is not without ample forewarning. The Panna Tiger Reserve stands exactly where Sariska stood in June 2004, on the verge of losing all of its few remaining tigers during the monsoon period of 2006. If the combined might of the Central and state governments can prevent this tragedy from happening, it will be a miracle.

That Panna was heading in this direction has been known for some time, and all efforts by NGOs and individuals for remedial action have been labelled as attempts to discredit the government by raising imaginary issues. To counter a specific allegation that many of the well-known tigers of Panna were missing, the state government “staged” a special census and declared that the population of tigers in Panna was increasing and not decreasing. When the government declared a figure of 36 tigers in Panna earlier this year, it completely disregarded irrefutable evidence of scientific research carried out over the previous five years. There are good reasons to believe that the figure was inflated by almost 600 per cent.

Attempts to camera-trap these tigers subsequently indicated the presence of only about six in the entire park. Unfortunately, even out of these, two tigers have been found dead in recent weeks. More may have been killed and their carcasses never discovered because owing to a serious law and order problem, there is hardly any presence of the staff inside the park these days. If Panna is to be saved, action on a war-footing will have to be taken immediately.

Unfortunately, against the backdrop of a web of misinformation that has been spun by the Madhya Pradesh Forest Department in recent months, the much-needed crash action that will entail the mobilisation of resources from even outside the Forest Department can never be justified. Also, given their complete bankruptcy of ideas to deal with such an emergency, there is no hope that this tragedy will be averted.

Let us now see the specifics of the problems in Panna. This neglected park of Madhya Pradesh faces “triple barrelled” problems. The first and foremost is the diamond mine sitting at its doorstep. Till recently the diamond mine was being operated by The National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC).

The original lease for mining expired in 1992. But being a government concern, the NMDC continued to mine illegally on the plea that it had applied for an extension and its acceptance was taken for granted. As the extension of lease never came through because of environmental concerns, the mining operations were halted a few months back on orders of the Central government based on a special directive from the court. The jobs of thousands of mine workers are now under the threat of termination. These affected workers cannot be expected to have sympathies for the tiger.

It would also be relevant to mention that while the diamond-bearing ore has one opening called a “pipe” on revenue land where the NMDC operations were taking place till recently, according to unconfirmed reports, a second opening is located inside the National Park. Its existence is an open secret. Thus, the area may be far too precious to be left exclusively for the tiger. And as the permission to exploit the deposits of diamonds in the area cannot be granted because it would be against the law protecting the tigers, the easiest way to dilute the value of Panna would be by eliminating the tiger.

The bulk of the area that constitutes the Panna Tiger Reserve was once a private hunting preserve of the erstwhile rulers of Panna, Chhatarpur and Bijawar princely states. While most of the descendants of the erstwhile princely families accepted the new reality in independent India, some did not. They continued to exercise control by cultivating certain portions of the park and to hunt, especially during the festive season of Dasehra and Diwali. The worst-affected area was the Trans-Ken River region of the Chadarnagar Range and the territorial forests located on the park’s south-western fringes. This has been the reality over the years and successive managers of the park took no action to stop it, thereby granting it some legitimacy by default.

Recently when some action was taken against illegal cultivators, things went out of control. Those who have been exploiting the park over the years are not prepared to give up their control without a fight. Their strong reaction against the management has driven most of the staff out of the park, leaving their areas of responsibility unguarded. Clearly, the situation in Panna is out of control and to be fair to the Forest Department, they are neither trained nor equipped to tackle such a hostile scenario.

A few months ago the government claimed that Panna had about 36 tigers whereas in reality it did not have more than six or eight. At least, two of these have been subsequently found dead. I would like to believe that the hierarchy in the Forest Department is aware of this major discrepancy. If they allow the present situation to persist, they will be able to pin the entire blame for the loss of all the tigers on the situation. At that point it will be impossible to prove the exact number of tigers that were actually lost — 36 or 5!

The situation in Panna today is very similar to what existed in Sariska in June 2004. Sariska had only four or five tigers as against a claim of 18. The mining lobby’s interests in Sariska’s deposits of marble were driving local politics. Unfortunately for them, the law protecting the tiger was a stumbling block. Was the tiger eliminated from Sariska because of this reason? Otherwise when Sariska lost its tigers, the most logical option available to the Government of Rajasthan was to attempt their reintroduction into the area.

Actually, a very generous preliminary offer to reintroduce tigers in Sariska was made by WWF- India. The in-house rough estimate of what it was likely to cost the WWF was between Rs 8 crore and Rs 10 crore; a huge sum for an NGO, but the organisation was prepared to raise the amount. The offer was ignored! Reintroduction of the tiger would have brought back those very complications that had been solved with the elimination of the tiger in the first place.

Are we witnessing a repeat of Sariska in Panna?

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Lessons in ‘real India’
by Sanjeev Singh Bariana

AN immaculately dressed man entered an overcrowded bogie of Kalka Mail at the New Delhi railway station. He bent his body at all angles to get his seat number. “Can you please get up”, he said to an extremely thin man sporting a very dark complexion sitting next to the window and munching pan with a trickle down his lips on a side of his face. “You are sitting on my seat”, he repeated. The seat occupant spat a dark red fluid out of his window and just laughed. “I will talk to the TTE”, the suave man muttered aggressively.

The thin dark figure narrowed his eyes and began in Hinglish: “Wearing a sophisticated suit does not make you a Deputy. I am not a defaulter. I cannot open the middle berth during the daytime. I am not scared of any TT or Shiti. I have enough bhhaivas (brothers) on train to sort out the matter. No dealing (threat) is acceptable. In case of any this that (unpleasantry), you will be sorry”.

Sporting a frown, the man sank in the seat next to me. I said “hello”. He introduced himself as Mr Deepak Kapoor, a senior manager with a multinational. “I am travelling by second class for the first time as no ticket for AC class was available”, he said.

The train had just started when a young boy in soiled clothes came selling “chana badaam” (groundnut). The “dealer” bought a packet. He offered Mr Kapoor some, which he refused. “Take it. Don’t be angry. I am Anjani Kumar, MA (Political Science, History and Sociology). We are all co-travellers so ‘rangbaazi’ (being a boss) is meaningless”. Mr Kapoor said: “I don’t eat anything from the roadside sellers. I have been warned against gastroenteritis.”

Next morning, Mr Kapoor was not participating in the game of cards. Anjani had a joke associated with every human figure on the cards.

The superfast train started stopping after every few minutes. Mr Kapoor became restless. “Don’t worry. We have entered Bihar and the train will now halt regularly”, Anjani said.

Mr Kapoor joined the gang of the card players and was soon laughing away to glory. He had learnt the game called “29”. Very soon, he loosened his tie and was eating “pakoras” and having “kullohar chai” (tea in a earthen cup).

It was a little dark in the evening when Anjani peeped out of the window for some time. He got up and pulled the chain. “Mr Kapoor, I have reached my destination”, he said tapping Mr Kapoor on his shoulders. Kapoor was silent for a moment before he gave a tight hug to Anjani. “Thanks for lessons in ‘Real India’,” he said.

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Alternative action
JNU model can show way out of quota wrangle
by Smriti Kak Ramachandran 

The debate over the proposed implementation of 27 per cent reservation for Other Backward Classes (OBCs) in institutions of higher learning has thrown up alternatives like Affirmative Action. The “Deprivation Points” given by Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) to a student from the Backward Classes or hailing from a backward region of the country is a case in point.

Some academics see in it a pan-Indian model that can be used as a template for replication just as easily by a university in Bangalore as a college in Bhagalpur. It is voluntary, it does away with the practice of stipulating a percentage and extends the benefit of reservation to the deprived sections of society; in other words, an upper caste student hailing from an economically backward family in Chhapra in Bihar will stand just as fair a chance for getting admission as an OBC student from Chennai.

The academics believe the JNU Model should appeal to a wider audience because it bridges the differences in the positions held by pro- and anti-reservation groups. The anti-reservation groups today claim merit will be compromised if admissions are based on caste and not ability and aptitude. Others in favour of reservation claim even the most deprived students can compete with their privileged (read upper caste) counterparts if given an opportunity.

Jawaharlal Nehru University attracts students from not just every strata of society but from the farthest corners of the country. The university says discrimination on the basis of caste is “at an all-time low” on its campus because it has encouraged students from even the most deprived sections and regions to aspire for better education. In addition to the 22.5 per cent reservation for Scheduled Castes/ Scheduled Tribes and the three per cent quota for the physically handicapped, the university provides Deprivation Points for students from the Other Backward Classes.

The OBC students are allotted Deprivation Points up to a maximum of 10 points. The OBC women candidates are given an extra 10 points and men, five points. The “creamy layer” as mentioned in Column Three of the Schedule to the Government of India, Department of Personnel and Training are excluded. Also, the candidates (including the OBCs) who have passed and/or are appearing in the qualifying examination prescribed for admission to the programmes of study from “Quartile One Districts” are given five points and those from “Quartile Two Districts” are given three points.

The lists of districts drawn from each State in the form of Quartiles One and Two are deduced by using three parameters: the literate as a percentage of total population (1991 Population Census); non-agricultural workers as a percentage of total “main” workers (1991 Populations Census) and agricultural productivity per hectare (averaged over 1986-’87, ‘87-’88 and ‘88-’89).

Vice Chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University Prof BB Bhattacharya says the university’s model of Affirmative Action is unique and worth replicating because “it is not just based on a single criterion of caste but on several other counts like income groups and gender”. “It is very progressive,” he asserts. Prof Bhattacharya is satisfied with the current practice. He “would prefer if [JNU] were allowed to carry on with the affirmative action plan” that it has but hastens to add that “we will go with [the government] if [it] has a national plan in mind”.

While the faculty and administration acknowledge that the Affirmative Action practised by JNU has served to bridge the chasm between students from the backward classes and others, some like Prof Jayati Ghosh have reservations. “It is not a bad scheme but does not ensure diversity… we have seen fewer representation of OBCs in some faculties like science because these Deprivation Points are relatively fewer,” says Prof Jayati Ghosh of Centre for Economic Studies and Planning and a member of the National Knowledge Commission.

Some students think differently too. “Last year only 10 per cent OBC students were admitted into the university through the Deprivation Points scheme. Others who got in were those who came from deprived regions. There are students who are financially sound but from backward regions, to provide them admission through this channel makes no sense. There are so many regions in Bihar that are considered deprived but some students from these regions are from economically sound backgrounds, then why should they be given this concession?” a PhD scholar wants to know.

Another PhD scholar, Bertin, who is associated with the National Students’ Union of India, believes “27 per cent reservation” is the only way to ensure admission for OBC students. “We have in fact prepared an action plan that calls for allowing students from any reserved category to be able to compete through the general category if their marks are in the same range. Why should meritorious students who meet the requirements of marks be forced to come in through the reserved category?” he wonders aloud.

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Zimbabwe’s 1200 per cent inflation
by Douglas Rogers

I was introduced to the “Zimbabwean wallet” on my first day back in my home country. I needed to change 100 U.S. dollars into local currency. A friend called a number, asked for a man codenamed “Mashishe” and inquired what the day's rate was. Could he change $100?

Ten minutes later, a car pulled up in the driveway. My friend took my $100, went to meet his man and, seconds later, returned with a knapsack bulging with thick bricks of Zimbabwean dollars - in notes of 20,000 - held together with rubber bands. It totaled 30 million Zimbabwean dollars. “Here,” he said, handing me the heavy bag. “The Zimbabwean wallet.”

In the 1980s, when I lived in Zimbabwe, 30 million Zimbabwe dollars would have made me one of the richest men in the country. Today, it barely buys a family a week's groceries. As I write this, a week after returning from Zimbabwe, the black-market rate has climbed again - from 300,000 to 1 it's 450,000 to 1. Even at the unrealistic government-set bank rate of 101,000 to 1, Zimbabwe's currency is the worst-performing in the world; Zimbabwe's 1,200 percent annual inflation rate is the highest in the world.

The sheer volume of cash that people in Zimbabwe have to deal with draws comparisons to 1920s Weimar Germany and the peso crisis in Argentina in 2001-02. Indeed, one of the few growth industries in the country is in imported money-counting machines that can rapidly sift through and add up the thousands of notes required to purchase fuel or food or to pay bills.

Prices go up every day, and shoppers can be seen in supermarket aisles with pencils and paper, trying to add up all the zeroes on their bill before checkout time. My visit coincided with the introduction of the Z$100,000 note - but even this denomination is not large enough. “Our money loses half its value every four months,” explained Zimbabwean economist John Robertson. “The Z$100,000 note at the official rate is US$1, but really it's worth 25 cents. In four months, it'll be worth 12 cents. A million-dollar note is more realistic.”

Inevitably, people innovate to survive. A friend who is a game ranger told me he no longer banks his money when he gets paid. “I go and buy furniture — chairs, couches, tables. At least a couch is worth something. We're slowly going back to a barter system,” he said.

How did Zimbabwe get to this point? It began in the late 1990s when, in order to pay for a costly military incursion into civil war-torn Congo, President Robert Mugabe ordered the printing of vast amounts of money, and inflation climbed steeply.

But it has reached today's levels only since the commercial farm invasions, in which 4,000 out of 4,500 white commercial farmers were kicked off their land, beginning in 2000. White farmers accounted for an estimated 60 percent of the country's foreign currency earnings through the export of tobacco and other crops. The invasions not only crippled domestic production, they scared away foreign investment. To dig itself out of debt and pay its bills, the government has simply printed more money.

Alarmingly, things are likely to get worse. Zimbabwe is only now reaching the level of rapid economic decline seen in once war-torn African countries such as Angola and Mozambique. Although 1,200 percent annual inflation might seem surreal, it has not yet reached the 100 percent a day experienced in Argentina. That day might not be far off.

By arrangement with LA Times-Washington Post

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J&K leads in job growth

Despite being in the grip of militancy for more than a decade, Jammu and Kashmir has registered the highest rate of growth in total employment at 6.82 per cent in the country, according to the Economic Census 2005 conducted by the Central Statistical Organisation.

The just-released provisional results of the Economic Census show an interesting trend in employment generation. After Jammu and Kashmir, the other states excelling in employment growth are Sikkim, Kerala, Haryana and Tripura. However, in terms of total employment, the top five states are Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.

These five states also have the maximum number of enterprises in the country. The census defines an enterprise as an undertaking engaged in production and/or distribution of goods and/or services not for the sole purpose of own consumption.

There are 42.12 million enterprises in the country engaged in different economic activities other than crop production and plantation. Out of these 25.81 million enterprises (61.3 per cent) are in the rural areas and 16.31 million enterprises (38.7 per cent) in the urban areas.

Five states - Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal - together account for about 50 per cent of the total enterprises in the country. About 85 per cent of the enterprises are engaged in non-agricultural activities and the remaining in agricultural activities other than crop production and plantation.

There are about 5.83 lakh enterprises that employed 10 workers or more, accounting 1.4 per cent of the total enterprises. Out of these 5.83 lakh enterprises, 2.25 lakh enterprises are in the rural areas and 3.58 lakh enterprises in the urban areas. Around 53 per cent of these larger enterprises are concentrated in Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala.

Around 5 per cent of enterprises in Arunachal Pradesh and about 11 per cent of enterprises in Dadar and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu employ 10 workers or more. About 7.91 million enterprises (18.8 per cent) do not have any premises for carrying out economic activities.

Though a fairly adequate system of agricultural statistics has already been developed in the country, such an information system has not yet been built up for the non-agricultural sector.

While statistics in respect of organised segments of the non-agricultural economy are being collected more or less regularly, it is not so in regard to its unorganised sector, even though the unorganised sector assumes greater importance due to its significant contribution towards gross domestic product as also in the generation of employment in a developing economy.

In a developing country like ours, the economic census is the only answer to reach the unorganised sectors. In order to meet the long-felt need for the availability of data in respect of unorganised non-agricultural sectors holding of the economy, a scheme of economic census and surveys was launched by the Central Statistical Organisation in 1976. Since then, the Central Statistical Organisation has conducted four economic censuses in the years 1977, 1980, 1990 and 1998.

An economic census is the complete count of all entrepreneurial units located within the geographical boundaries of the country. The main purpose of conducting an economic census is to generate an updated frame of enterprises for detailed follow-up surveys. It provides essential data on the number and distribution of enterprises engaged in different types of economic activities, which form the basis, mainly, for the detailed follow-up surveys.

The write-up is based on the Economic Census 2005, Central Statistical Organisation.

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From the pages of

April 17, 1965

Nuclear umbrella

The British Prime Minister, Mr Harold Wilson, told his press conference at the United Nations on Wednesday that some sort of a nuclear reassurance to countries like India was urgently needed if the acquisition and proliferation of nuclear weapons was to be prevented. The exact form of the reassurance, he added, had to be discussed with Britain’s allies and the Commonwealth. He made it clear, however, that Prime Minister Shastri had not asked for a Western and Russian nuclear umbrella but wanted some kind of a guarantee by the United Nations, including the Soviet Union. According to the “New York Times”, the U.S.A. is considering proposals for a guarantee to non-nuclear Powers by nuclear Powers under some international guarantee system in view of the Chinese atomic detonation and the danger of nuclear blackmail by Peking.

An agreement on nuclear disarmament bristles with extraordinary difficulties because of the extreme complexity of the problem, fears and suspicious between the Great Powers and the risks involved in the surreptitious manufacture of forbidden weapons.

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