Dec 102010

Yesterday, Parliament didn’t work for the 20th day in a row. It was disrupted from doing any business. I almost expect the headlines, in the next few days to say — “today MP’s did work” ….

What does that mean – that means, that the Government that the people of India have elected to power to deliver a certain set of goals – could not deliver what it is meant to do, because the Opposition – or the bunch of people, that the Indian voter did not think fit to exercise power – decided that this is the way to bring about their agenda.

What are the issues:

The Opposition Stand
The opposition parties - the BJP and the Communists – want a Joint Parliamentary Commission (JPC) – to look into the allocation of 2G licenses. They believe that there were massive kickbacks involved in the process. They claim that the loss to the exchequer in forgoing the auction process (which was followed in the 3G allocation) cost the country some lakhs of crores. They claim it is the single largest loss to the exchequer in history. The CPM is slightly flexible  on the JPC. the BJP is not.

Do I agree with the Opposition’s stand - yes & no. there needs to be investigation. However, where I disagree with them on disrupting Parliament.

There, in my view, is this petulant childlike  obstinacy on the JPC, only the JPC and nothing but the JPC – and where their behavior scares me is that if we don’t get our way, we won’t let you – the State – discharge its duties. And, we shall hold our breath, throw a tantrum and generally be disruptive till you do exactly what we want. Furthermore, the three JPC”s held to date have really not done too much except muddy the issue more – the first, for example, was on Bofors, the second on insider trading and the third on pesticides in Colas and ground water pollution…

My major objection with the opposition stand – The Opposition in India is behaving like the opposition in the Weimar republic - in discrediting the system – not the Government -and paving the way for a more unilateral system…..

The Government Stand

The Government – the Congress and its Allies – say yes there were irregularities. But they say that the loss was presumptive. What does this mean – it means that had it been auctioned x would have been  earned, but since the UPA didn’t follow auctioning and went in for revenue sharing – this is not the loss, for there is money going to be earned in perpetuity. But, the UPA admits that there were irregularities, says that it will be investigated bur refuses the JPC. It has set up a one man committee to investigate the issue

note: Presumptive loss – the best analogy i can give is on gender. Lets’ say you – dear reader – are a woman. As a woman you are a presumptive male – for, If your father had contributed the other chromosome ( Y) you would have been a man:)
In economics, this is also the opportunity cost of making a decision – in life this is the road  not taken

Do I agree with the Government’s stand – Yes and No. Yes – it is a presumptive loss. No – that they behaved like ostriches on corruption and flouting of the system. and i am also bugged with the fact that they tried to brazen this out till the heat got too much.

I personally want to see the loss recovered, the matter investigated, the accused investigated and the guilty punished. It matters not whether it is a PAC, a JPC or a XYZ.  What I would be unhappy with is a coverup. I am unhappy that the Government has taken so long to figure out that something was drastically wrong in the process, even more unhappy that it has taken so long to get out of collective hibernation to take action.


The Congress needs to understand that it is in Government. And this is for a 5 year period and not perpetuity. You cannot hide behind ‘coalition dharma’ – if the coalition partners are that dirty, dump them and call for elections. You have not been elected to power -you have been elected to Govern – it is time that began happening….

The BJP needs to understand that the people of India didn’t want to elect it to power or to govern  twice in succession. They need to ask why. Is part of it their own petulant behavior? Their desire to flout the system and take to the streets and disrupt everything if they don’t get their way. Maybe the BJP needs to dump its leadership and find people who are rational and in step with the mainstream electorate – not fossils who are as compromised as anyone in the UPA….


Finally, if I – the voter – want a change from the UPA at the centre what is my choice ….. a political party that behaves like a 3 year old spoilt child in a mall ???

Nov 192010

The Outlook Magazine has published the transcripts & recordings of the secretly taped conversations allegedly between Ms.Radia and a variety of luminaries in Business, Politics & Media ….

If nothing else, they are entertaining …. could be name dropping, could be an over sized sense of importance, could be true …. I don’t know the veracity of the tapes – i am putting them up as an alternate link.

If the copyright owners – possibly the people taping or the people taped – want me to take this down – drop me a line :)


The alleged conversations between :

  • Vir Sanghvi and Ms.Radia are here as is the transcript of their conversation
    • Vir Sanghvi–10-188819-0-06-20090522-221623 
    • Vir Sanghvi–15-188819-0-10-20090523-222642 
    • Vir Sanghvi–42-188819-0-24-20090522-130319 
    • Vir Sanghvi–43-188819-0-24-20090524-122706 
    • Vir Sanghvi-05-188819-0-02-20090522-132707 
    • Vir Snaghvi–36-188819-0-22-20090522-225011 
  • Kanimozhi and Ms.Radia are here as is the transcript of their conversation
    • Kanni–15-188819-0-09-20090522-144615 
    • Kanni–17-188819-0-09-20090522-200419 
    • Kanni–22-188819-0-11-20090524-092731 
    • Kanni–32-188819-0-20-20090522-224116 
    • Kanni–34-188819-0-21-20090522-111541 
    • Kanni–46-188819-0-26-20090522-104506 
    • Kanni-37-188819-0-22-20090523-095902 


  • Raja and Ms.Radia are here as is the transcript of their conversation
    • 06-188819-0-03-20090522-014237
    • 11-188819-0-31-20090524-110511
    • 28-188819-0-19-20090522-132029
    • A Raja50-188819-0-27-20090523-142941
    • A Raja-06-188819-0-03-20090522-014237
    • A Raja-28-188819-0-19-20090522-132029
    • A Raja–11-188819-0-31-20090524-110511

The rest of the conversation are here

Ratan Tata: IMP-Ratan-Spectrum issue-20090611-155759 

Ranjan Bhattacharya: 16-Cong Apni Dukan20090522-170040 

Barkha Dutt:

  • Barkha Dutt-02-188819-0-01-20090522-104733 
  • Barkha–09-188819-0-04-20090522-180916 
  • Barkha–11-188819-0-07-20090522-153129 
  • Barkha–18-188819-0-10-20090522-094851 
  • Barkha–33-188819-0-21-20090522-095845 
  • Barkha-14-188819-0-08-20090522-192357 

Read the responses:

Shankar Aiyar (then with India Today Group)

  • Shankar Aiyar–20090522-110908 
  • Shankar Aiyar-20090522-104036 
  • Shankar Aiyar-20090522-184449 
  • Shankar Aiyar20090522-193809 
  • Shankar-Aiyar 20090523-130017 


  • Jehangir–12-188819-0-07-20090522-160638 
  • K Raja (not A Raja)23-188819-0-14-20090523-112954 
  • Sunil Arora–45-188819-0-26-20090522-081537 
  • Tarun Das-13-188819-0-07-20090522-165535 
  • 19-Garima-20090522-214910 
Nov 182010

Open – The Magazine has transcripts & audio files – conversations, allegedly between Barkha Dutt and Niira Radia – the reason I am putting it up here is that the Open Magazine servers have crashed ….

This is also being put up as is without comment .if you are NDTV’s legal team, please insert the word “alleged” where ever you want :)

To those at Open Mag – if you feel that I am violating your copyright, drop me a line – will take down this post :)

The audio files can be found at the bottom of this post …

As talks between the DMK and Congress (‘them’) broke down over joining the Government in May 2009, Radia was actively involved in opening channels between the two parties through, among others, television journalist Barkha Dutt

“Oh God. So now what? What should I tell them? Tell me what should I tell them?” —BARKHA DUTT

DATE 22 May 2009 TIME 09:48:51

RADIA: Hi, did I wake you up?

BARKHA: No, no, no. I’ve been up, ya, most of the night. The stalemate continues, yaa.

RADIA: Yeah. Listen, the thing is that they need to talk to him directly. That is what the problem is.

BARKHA: Haan so, apparently PM’s really pissed off that they went public.

RADIA: But that’s Baalu’s doing, naa… he was not instructed by Karunanidhi to do that.

BARKHA: Oh, he wasn’t?

RADIA: This is not. He was told to come away and tell Congress that.

BARKHA: And he went public

RADIA: Well, the media… media, the media was standing outside.

BARKHA: Oh God. So now what? What should I tell them? Tell me what should I tell them?

RADIA: I’ll tell you what it is—the problem and I have had a long chat with both his wife and with the daughter right

BARKHA: Haan, haan.

RADIA: The problem is if the Congress has a problem with Baalu, if they have no problem with anyone. They need and go talk to Karunanidhi. They have very good relationship with Karunanidhi directly.

BARKHA: Correct, haan.

RADIA: Because you see, in front of Baalu, in front of Maran, they can’t talk.


RADIA: So they have to tell him directly, there [are] enough Congress leaders in Tamil Nadu. They need to go in and tell him exactly—the biggest problem is that the following of Alagiri is saying that you cannot give [inaudible] a cabinet [inaudible] and keep Alagiri in the MoS state.

BARKHA: That’s right. But will Karuna drop Baalu?

RADIA: He… look, if you tell him that Baalu is the only problem. I would imagine, he will drop him.

BARKHA: But you see the problem right now is also over the choice of portfolios, naa…

RADIA: No. They’ve not said anything. The portfolios have not even got discussed.

BARKHA: Congress claims, for whatever it’s worth, that the DMK wanted surface transport, power, IT, telecom, railways and health.

RADIA: You see, you see my honest advice…


RADIA: that you tell them that they need to tell him directly that we are happy because Kani’s [Kanimozhi, DMK Chief Karunanidhi’s daughter] got no issue being about independent. But Alagiri is now telling her that you cannot take an independent charge if Maran remains cabinet minister.

BARKHA: I see.

RADIA: And Congress is sending messages through media and through various sources, saying that. And Maran is telling everyone that he is the only acceptable person.

BARKHA: Person, yeah, yeah, yeah. That I know.

RADIA: But that’s not correct, naa?

BARKHA: No, I know. We’ve taken that off. We’ve taken that off.

BARKHA: Also, but, but the Congress needs to tell Karunanidhi that we have not said anything about Maran.

BARKHA: Okay. Let me talk to them again.

RADIA: Yeah? The choice of candidate we will leave to you. We have some reservation about Baalu. And let them tell the reservation. And we have not said anything about Maran. We are not talking


In another telecon, Barkha Dutt offers Niira Radia the assurance that she is on the job as a reliable go-between

“That’s not a problem, I’ll talk to Azad. I’ll talk to Azad right after I get out of RCR” —BARKHA DUTT

DATE 22 May 2009 TIME 10:47:33

BARKHA: Haan, Niira?

RADIA: Barkha, what I’m told is that the Congress yesterday, apparently, God knows who they are talking to in the DMK.

BARKHA: Haan, well must be Maran…

RADIA: Relayed—no, they relayed that the infrastructure portfolio should not be given to Maran or Baalu.

BARKHA: No, that’s because they want to keep it for themselves.

RADIA: No, they wanted to; they didn’t want any infrastructure, that’s what Prime Minister said, so he said that’s why they give him labour, fertiliser, chemical—and telecom, IT, they said for Raja. So what has happened is, is that message not relayed to Karunanidhi?

BARKHA: Oh I see!

RADIA: They might have told some minion down the line or told Maran who is not relaying the truth.

BARKHA: I think they have told Maran.

RADIA: Yeah, now what they need to do is, they need to speak to Kani so she can set up the discussion with her father, because even the Prime Minister’s discussion was … she was the one who’s translating, and it was a very brief discussion for two minutes.


RADIA: That we’ll try and work it out, and the let’s not you know take it a hasty easy decision. That’s the type of conversation that happened.

BARKHA: No, I’ll set it up as soon as they get out of RCR.

RADIA: What she saying is that, you know, that someone senior like Ghulam [Nabi Azad, senior Congress leader]—because he is the one who is authorised to speak. ….

BARKHA: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

RADIA: Right? Was to speak to her then she can tell her father that I have got this message from the Congress.

BARKHA: Theek hai, not a problem. That’s not a problem, I’ll talk to Azad—I’ll talk to Azad right after I get out of RCR [Race Course Road, presumably, the PM’s residence].

RADIA: Yeah, and then she said when father lands, I can speak to him.



The two conversationalists touch base again

“I’ve had a long chat, I had a long chat, and they promised me that Azad will speak to her” —BARKHA DUTT

DATE 22 May 2009 TIME 15:31:29

RADIA: They will speak to her?


RADIA: Who? Ghulam?

BARKHA: Ghulam. Yeah.

RADIA: You know, the problem is she’s catching a flight at five haan, going back. Dayanidhi Maran is attending the swearing in when only Raja has been authorised to attend, so he’s gone and told his leader that Ahmed Patel has told me especially to attend the swearing in.

BARKHA: Ahmed says this is rubbish …

RADIA: But I am telling you but this. Karunanidhi’s very confused.

BARKHA: No, but why can’t Kani stay also and attend it?

RADIA: She doesn’t want to attend no because her father told her to come back. She has to follow what she’s father says, no. Call Ghulam then.

BARKHA: Let me call him.

RADIA: She’s leaving at five. She’s catching a flight at five.


Niira Radia and Barkha Dutt discuss cabinet composition possibilities—with Raja’s inclusion or non-inclusion the big question

“I am telling you, nahin hai. Trust me. Nahin hai” —NIIRA RADIA

DATE 22 May 2009 TIME time 18:09:06

BARKHA: No, you see Congress’s condition is Baalu should not get surface transport. Not Baalu, DMK should not get surface transport, beyond individuals right?

RADIA: Correct, correct, and they are not individuals. Let me tell you one thing’s for sure, 3 plus 4 was yesterday; because of Maran, they wanted to make it 4 plus 3.


RADIA: So, now it is back to 3 plus 4 that was already worked on the table?

BARKHA: No, so why does this formula not sound right then?

RADIA: Because of Alagiri naa, if you make Alagiri… not cabinet. No, he’s not got cabinet.

BARKHA: Oh, Alagiri got what, according to these things?

RADIA: You see, according to her, he’s got Health, but he can’t be cabinet. Either Maran is not cabinet, either Raja is not cabinet or Baalu’s not.

BARKHA: Alagiri’s got Health and that’s a big compromise by Congress because they said we won’t give them Health. So that’s their face saver. No, but Alagiri, Health can be cabinet?

RADIA: Agreed, but then Raja is MoS.

BARKHA: Raja is MoS!

RADIA: Then is Baalu MoS?

BARKHA: Nahin ho sakta. Nahin, nahin, nahin, if Baalu gets the Heavy Industries and Alagiri is in the Fertiliser, according to …. Baalu gets Fertilizer; Alagiri gets this thing, Health.

RADIA: Maran gets Telecom and IT.

BARKHA: Maran gets Telecom and IT. Raja gets demoted.

RADIA: Who gets…?

BARKHA: Raja. Nahin hoga?

RADIA: I am telling you nahin hai (laughing). Trust me, nahin hai.

BARKHA: Achcha, theek hai.


In yet another telecon, Barkha Dutt explains her situation to Niira Radia

“Everybody I know in the Congress was at the swearing-in, so I haven’t been able to speak with the top guys, and now I just finished and I am going to make my set of calls” BARKHA DUTT

DATE 22 May 2009 TIME 19:23:57

BARKHA: You see, what happened was everybody I know in the Congress was at the swearing in, so I haven’t been able to speak with the top guys, and now I just finished and I am going to make my set of calls.

RADIA: Kani just landed in Chennai. Just now. I just spoke…

BARKHA: Where is Daya? Where is Maran?

RADIA: Daya didn’t turn up for the swearing in because he was called back, because he went and told Karunanidhi that I have been asked by Ahmed Patel to come for the swearing in. But the leader said then you join the Congress.

BARKHA: (laughs) So now?

RADIA: So Raja was the only one who’s authorised to attend which he’s done and Raja’s catching the 8:40 flight…



via News You Can’t Use – the audio recordings :

Recording 1 ; Recording 2; Recording 3; Recording 4; and Recording 5

via – the Secret Journal of Rakesh Jhunjhunwalla - the download link for the audio files here.

The Open Mag site, yesterday, went down before I could read or put up anymore of the links. It is back up today…. the remaining conversations that have been tapped and reproduced are here. They are, allegedly, between Radia and Vir Sanghvi, Ratan Tata, Raja & Kanimozhi


And you can find a copy of NDTV’s statement on this entire affair here

Vir Sanghvi’s statement is here.

And finally, for those of you who have time and energy – read this by Girish Nikam on his website – it provides alleged detailed documentation and conclusions of the IT department on this whole sorry affair.