A bit of a problem, this, for Zee News which morphed “Pakistan Zindabad” slogans onto a video to lead a tirade against JNU’s anti-nationals; for BJP MP Maheish Giri who filed the FIR demanding “stern action”; and for Home Minister Rajnath Singh who grabbed hold of the ball and hurtled to touchdown in a minefield
What to do now?
Which is trump in this game of gotcha — the flag-draped politician or the godman?
Mitali Saran in acerbic voice on Art of Living’s birthday bash:
Delhi’s river — that mangy, smelly, desperate thing — has once more been thrown under the bus by a happy godman backed by a godman-happy government.
An early front-runner in the annual WTF-ery Award stakes is Sri XXX Ravi Shankar, who says his organisation should be applauded for choosing such a polluted venue as the Yamuna for its birthday party.
Sandip Roy takes the whole exercise in self-aggrandisement apart with surgical skill.
The President of India has cancelled his attendance. And this just in:
Good on you, Mr Modi.
PS: Via Scroll, a first person account of the construction activities being carried out in connection with the festival.
A timely — or maybe not timely, since the ship seems to have upped anchor — warning for Delhi:
An NGT-appointed panel in its report has mentioned, “The entire area of the floodplain between River Yamuna and DND Flyover has been levelled flat and on the western side of the river — 50 to 60 hectares of floodplain have been completely destroyed. Natural vegetation comprising reeds, shrubs, trees etc has been completely removed. A large number of birds and other natural life on the floodplain have vanished.”
Manoj Misra, convener, Yamuna Jiye Abhiyan, an NGO working for the restoration of the River Yamuna, said: “Vegetation on the soil is extremely important, especially on floodplains. The ground vegetation is the lifeline of floodplains. Absence of it will certainly cause floods. One won’t be surprised if the low-lying areas of east Delhi get flooded or even a larger area.”
How flood will be caused?
– The levelling and compacting of the floodplain would reduce its water absorbing capacity by 35 to 40 percent. As a result, the rest 60 percent of water will run off to adjoining low areas causing flood.
– The bush, reeds, shrubs, marsh etc helps in water-absorption due to the roots. As this vegetation has its own absorptive capacity, the flood situation will aggravate.
– Groundwater recharging capacity will drastically decrease.
– If heavy rain takes place, the extra water will flow into the residential areas.
From a FirstPost piece on Art of Living’s upcoming World Culture Festival.