Freedom of speech in India

“If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we be led, like sheep to the slaughter” -George Washington

Article 19, Part III of Indian constitution envisions the Right to freedom of speech and expression. Since, the inception of the constitution, the scope of this freedom has been expanded by the Supreme Court. Recently, Section 66A of IT Act was scrapped to promote online freedom of speech. But, this freedom of speech is only utilized by few sections of the society.

Due to the emergence of social media around 30% of the total population are able to air their views. The remaining population is still looking for the mediums to raise their voice. So, the ultimate question is not whether freedom of expression is fair or unfair but to whom it is fair? Sedition laws and defamation suits are randomly filed against the citizens in many cases. For example there was a huge hue and cry against the arrest of a famous cartoonist and an editor. Also, minorities in India, both social and economic, were worried about the emergence of the fringe elements after Modi took over as Prime Minister. Fortunately all the worries were proved wrong.

Trump governance vs Modi Sarkar

With the raising right wing populism across the world, there is no wonder that Donald Trump and Narendra Modi got elected to the top position. Modi cashed in on the incompetence of Congress to eradicate policy paralysis. His stand on the implementation of Uniform Civil Code, prohibition of Bangladeshi immigrants on Indian soil, eradication of black money gets him closer to Trump’s policies. Trump is specific about his policies. He wants to prevent illegal immigrations from Mexico and other Muslim majority countries which are threat to U.S. economy. Improve the ease of business by reducing the corporate tax, protect and promote American culture.

The policies of both the leaders stems from the political party they belong to i.e., National Democratic Party (NDA) and Republican Party of U.S.A. Both the parties are Nationalists, neo-conservatives and anti-elitist. They could be brought under a larger umbrella of Right wing populists. Liberal in their economic policies and conservatives in their culturally conservative, both the parties, are in sync, in broad terms. However, there is an enormous difference between ‘Make in India’ and ‘Make America great again’ as propagated by Modi and Trump in their campaigns. Modi’s focus is on increasing Foreign Direct Investments by establishing business friendly environment. On the other hand Trump is inclined towards protectionist measures by imposing ban on Chinese goods or hiking VISA fee. So, Modi is probably getting it right compared to Trump.

The Future of Climate Change

Till last year, efforts to mitigate the threat of climate change were in full momentum. The landmark climate change agreement concluded by U.S.A and China in September, 2016 was hailed as the major breakthrough. Both the countries joined the Paris Agreement through this pact. However, with the election of Donald Trump to the presidency of U.S.A, the future of climate change looks bleak. Irony is that the result of USA presidential elections were just released during the Marrakesh Treaty negotiations.

Rise in right wing populism across the world is also a major threat to climate change. The ideology prefers a Nationalist approach to solve the solutions whereas climate change mitigation requires global mindset. According to NASA, 2016 was the warmest year and the temperatures may surge exponentially in coming years. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports that future risk involves ocean acidification, significant eco system shifts and species extinction. This will undermine food security and may also provoke global wars.

The tangible solution is to get the world together to implement all the treaties agreed upon and not to sign new agreements. Otherwise, the Paris Agreement, Kyoto Protocol and other significant treaties will remain only on books. Recent strides in technology such as Big Data Analytics has to be leveraged. With increasing global concerns, political consensus is the need of the hour.

Welcome to Pandas Wisdom

None of us is a CEO to a Fortune 500 company nor did we emancipate thousands of deprived people from poverty. We are just a bunch of friends, from across the nation, who have uncompromising passion for writing. Benjamin Franklin once said, “Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” We chose the former one and the Pandas Wisdom came into the fray. Thanks to the locked-in period during the residential Post Graduate Education in Chennai.

Pic: From left: Adithya N, Bharat S Raj, B. Jyothirmaie Reddy, P. Shankarananda Reddy

Introducing myself, I’m Bharat S Raj, an Independent Technologist, blogger, data enthusiast and traveler from Kochi, India. As an intern, I have worked with companies like Amul & Sobha Ltd. I’m also a TEDx Organiser, Wikipedian & Digital Marketer (Google AdWord Certified). I am interested in growing and developing with data, solving business problems and creating impact.

Adithya N is a calm youngster, a chess wizard, a voracious reader and a sardonic person hailing from Mysore, one of the cleanest cities in India. He is also a keyboard player and a music lover. His area of interest include sports, education, economics, showbiz, lifestyle, and music.

Palle Shankarananda Reddy is a finance fanatic and a content writer. After experimenting with all the entrance exams, one could ever think of, he decided to settle with us for an MBA at Great Lakes. But his constant quest for knowledge and creativity has made him more of an artist rather than a manager. Anything with wheels drags his attention, say it skating, cycling or riding, he loves it.

Bommineni Jyothirmaie Reddy was born and brought up in a patriarchal society, she has successfully modelled herself into a strong female. As a trained horse rider, badminton player and a classical singer she adds diverse value to her writings. She brings along with her a rich corporate experience of working in TCS and Amazon.

But why name Pandas Wisdom? We believe that Pandas are incessantly persuasive, kind and are known for their wisdom. Just like Pandas express their wisdom through adorable cuteness, we wish to express our vivid ideas through lucid writings. Our diverse backgrounds and unique style of writing helps in achieving this purpose.

The four of us have strong desire to help our fellow citizens in contemplating this VUCA world. This could be achieved only through the free flow of knowledge. Pandas Wisdom is a perfect platform for it. Our experiences with the corporate world, strengthened the fact that general knowledge is quintessential for survival. May it be in technology or showbiz or any other segment of business!

Just like the Panda bears which are completely focused on hibernation and fun in their lives, we Pandas request you to engross yourselves in these articles and enjoy the dissemination of knowledge to the fullest!

On behalf of the team, I would like to thank you for being one of the first readers of Pandas Wisdom. We hope that you enjoy reading our blog and disseminate knowledge to the world.

Happy Reading Folks !!