I found meaning to my life when i first discovered Swami Vivekananda and his message of self discovery as a young, impressionable 17 year old. From then on, till today his life and message has been my guiding compass. It is as though, he sits on my shoulder watching and guiding my every move. Words indeed, are inadequate to describe the unlimited inspiration that I get from the ‘presence’ that one needs to experience first hand. Though i tried to capture some of my thoughts in my book about him, I know how they are only a snapshot of how I felt then. Some of my thoughts and views are shared in this freewheeling conversation that I had with Ramesh Venkataram, the Director of Vivekananda Institute for Leadership Development, Mysuru. Listen on: https://anchor.fm/v-lead/episodes/Swami-Vivekananda-and-his-enduring-message-ehlgu1
A development activist, public policy advocate, social innovator and leadership trainer
Early last week, I was invited to a one-to-one meeting with Ms Nirmala Sitharaman ji, the Union Finance minister to share inputs on the forthcoming budget. She was keen on understanding the fiscal policy aspirations of the NGO sector and other insights into how best to grow the rural economy. While this presented me with an opportunity to share my views on the regulatory, taxation, CSR and other norms related to the Civil Society Sector, it also gave me a practical first hand feeling of the seriousness of intent and sincerity of purpose of the Finance minister. Preparing a budget
The inequities that India’s caste system has created has been attempted to be stalled or reversed through the constitutional mandate of Affirmative action. Increasingly, one has forgotten the basic tenet of ensuring justice and fairness to all citizens and the sociopolitical eco-system has only been exploiting the sentiments of religion and caste. The flagrant abuse of the system is neither revocable nor constructive but our political and religious forces seem to be unmindful of this. Read my article on this subject in today’s Deccan Herald.
The recent Diwali festival saw the government of Karnataka vacillate between wanting to ban firecrackers and not wanting to ban it. Chief Minister Yeddyurappa initially announced that his government was considering a ban but went back on this a few days later. The expert committee for managing the COVID pandemic constituted by the Government used science and evidence to prevail and the Government finally issued ban orders against using the regular firecrackers but permitted the use of Green crackers. As with many other similar situations, the orders were neither here nor there. Seeing through this shoddy approach, the High Court