Thursday, October 23, 2014

Using local herbs as insecticides

I am staying on a 1-acre farm and growing fruits, flowers, vegetables and spices for my own use. When I started, I had to use very large quantities of insecticides. However, I soon noticed that insects don't attack some plants, such as neem, gajar ghas, ipomoea, custard apple etc. So, I decided to take leaves of all such plants, crush them, soak them in water for some time and use the filtered extract as spray on my plants. I soon discovered that this was very effective way of controlling insects, so much so that I no longer keep any insecticide with me and only very occasionally buy the minimum quantity of an insecticide for use against insects that don't yield to my mixture. This not only saves me money  but also guards against ingestion of harmful insecticidal residues.

I wish the Agricultural Colleges would take up research on the insecticidal properties of  these plants which grow as weeds in most fields and inform the farmers how to make use of them  and thereby save a lot of money for the farmers and save the general public from harmful effects of residual

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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Crime Law and Police

My book may be viewed at Law and Police.pdf.

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Sunday, February 2, 2014

Citizen's Monitoring of the Police

Kejriwal has claimed that because he has set up a help-line for citizens to register their complaints and to learn how to 'sting' public servants, corruption in Delhi has come down to negligible limits. To the extent that there is substance in this claim, it shows that fear of exposure and subsequent action can deter the corrupt to some extent.

In this context my suggestion for citizen's monitoring committees at the PSs needs to be re-looked.

I have suggested that there should be a citizens committee at each Police-Station which can entertain complaints from the people and ask questions of the PS and put the whole matter before senior officers, the govt and the media, if it is not satisfied with the response of the PS. The committee could have, say, seven members, which is a manageable number and which is not likely to be dominated by one party.I have suggested that all elected representatives living in the area should elect the members by a secret ballot so that the  committees enjoy the confidence of all elected representatives but need not share their compulsions; that only residents of the area, who are easily accessible to all, should be eligible, so that nobody has difficulty in getting heard; and that all those whom the SC has held ineligible for elections should be ineligible for membership of these committees. I have suggested that the Committees should be statutory, so that police may not take them lightly;that the law itself should make it clear that a committee can ask questions only as a committee and that individual members may not approach the police on their own ( so that there is no possibility of an under-hand deal between a member and the police in any matter), and that it should be absolutely clear that a committee can only ask questions of the PS and convey public concerns to them, but cannot interfere with police work in any way. I have further suggested that superior police officers should be obliged to inquire when the committee so recommends so that their impact is felt, that the inquiring officer should co-opt a nominee of the State Human Rights Commission and/or a nominee of the Women's Commission if a woman is alleged to have been harassed by the police and/or a nominee of the SC&ST Commission if the complainant belongs to SC or ST; and that a SDOP-level officer should be put in charge of each PS so that complaints referred by the committees can be quickly inquired  and better leadership and guidance is provided to the PS staff and bad behaviour is nipped in the bud. I have commended the suggestion that PSs should have CCTV cameras so that there is a record of how the PS staff have behaved with complainants, witnesses and suspects and suggested that there should be e-registration of FIR and that the district control room should react immediately to a report of an incident and hand over the case to PS concerned in due course.I have further suggested that govts must simultaneously sanction welfare schemes for the police, which would compensate them for the hazards of service, including inability to devote time to children.

I don't think any party will oppose legislation to set up citizens' committees; all other suggestions can be put into effect through executive orders, without delay and without much financial outlay.

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Friday, January 24, 2014

AAP's Defence of its Law Minister

It is entirely possible that a sex and drugs racket was going on in the Khirkiyan locality, that the police had not done anything to stop it despite representations from the residents, that the Law Minister responded to the appeal of his constituents, and that he went to the place at night to satisfy himself that the complaint was right, before taking action. The moot question is, however, whether his actions after he reached the place were justified.

Since the Law Minister could not have seen what was going on in the houses from the roadside, it seems reasonable to ask how the Minister satisfied himself, and  how Yogendra Yadav, Kejriwal and all other AAP leaders are so sure, that a sex and drugs racket was going on in the particular house which the Minister wanted raided: does the sight of condom etc in a car prove  that prostitution was going on in that house? Also, since AAP leaders like Yogendra Yadav and Ashutosh  have been laying so much stress on what they have and what they have not seen in TV footage, and since it is known that TV crews were invited there by the Minister,I think AAP can reasonably be asked to produce the footage showing the activities of the Minster after his arrival on the spot. That should settle the questions whether he and his men man-handled the Ugandan women or not and whether they forced police to take urine samples by the road-side or not. If AAP does not produce the footage, then the matter rests on what witnesses have to say  In that case, why should the statements of the Ugandan women be discounted? Because they are blacks?

There is also the issue of the Law Minister pressing the police to raid a house even after the police officer had told him that it was not legally permissible. Surely, if the police officer was wrong in saying this, he could have been suspended the next morning and prosecuted for dereliction of duty.That would have taught the police a proper lesson. Instead of that he chose to berate the officer in public. Can it be accepted as responsible conduct?

 The concerted efforts of AAP leaders like Kejriwal  to overawe the police (hum unko theek kar denge), instead of pressing for police reforms, also raises questions. There is certainly big money in sex and drug rackets.The AAP leaders have alleged  that Delhi police collects money from everyone and passes it up; do they not want to stop it but only want a change in the direction of this flow? If they want to stop it, then why is it that they have not raised their voice for police reforms which the Supreme Court has mandated?

Since the AAP people are experts in 'sting' operations, it would be much better if instead of making a general  allegation, they would carry out a 'sting' to show which girl is taking money from boys, and inviting him to which house. It would also better serve public purpose if they were to 'sting' some corrupt police officers (which should not be too difficult considering that, according to Kejriwal, 90 percent of Delhi police is corrupt) instead of starting a war against the Delhi police.

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