Many of my friends, a few who had left the country for greener pastures outside, were quite surprised to hear Kumaraswamy’s speech accusing the BJP leaders of trying to start horse trading in the state after the elections, “I didn’t know Karnataka was into horses,” said a friend from Kentucky, as he looked out of his window onto the paddock he owned and which I’d heard had some of the best prize horses in the world, “If I’d known I would have flown some of my best ones down before the elections. I’m sure mine would have given those the BJP are after, a run for their money!”

“The BJP need those horses urgently!” I exclaimed to my horse owning Kentucky friend, “They are allegedly offering 100 crores for the trade!”  

“Hundred crores for horse trading!” asked my friend incredulously, “Let me tell you my horses are better bred than what Modi or Amit Shah want!Can you call and tell them that? Mine are of pedigree stock, some have blue blood in their veins, some, their ancestry from Arabian forefathers! What kind of pedigree do these Karnataka horses have?”

“Basically fourth or fifth standard pass!” I said lamely, “Quite a few are drop outs!”

“There I told you! Mine are thoroughbreds, who can run a whole race, maintaining the same speed and length and giving huge returns to the owner!” whispered my friend urgently, “Please tell Modi that. Do you think those horses he is thinking of buying can last the whole race?”

“No!” I said, “Quite a few of them have already shown signs of giving up if offered the right incentives!Others may withdraw midway if offered more oats or if promoted to head horse or if offered a jockey position!”

“Exactly!” said my friend, “That’s what I’m trying to say, the BJP should stop buying those lame horses and look for others! Whose stables are they buying from?”

“Rahul’s and Gowda’s,” I whispered.

“They’re losers!” said my friend, “Nobody will bet on them!Rahul’s may have been good around 1947, but ever since then they’ve lost their goal and purpose, and who’s this Gowda?”

“His father was once prime minister of India!” I said.

“Never heard of him!” said my friend from Kentucky, “forgive me but quite a few of your PMs didn’t do much but sleep!”

“Yes I know!” I said sadly, remembering a picture of the same Gowda fast asleep.

“You tell Mr Modi not to waste his hundred crores on those horses!” said my friend urgently, “Tell him there’s better horses elsewhere, though as a horse breeder I’d advise him to rear them himself!”

“He tried!” I said quietly, “But he needs eight horses more!”

“Tell him not to horse-trade, “ whispered my friend, “Just be patient for another four years and breed his own horses..!”

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The way things are happening, I envision and shudder at the day when Donald Trump and his once sworn enemy Kim Jong-un become the closest friends in the world. With Donald promising to have a meeting with Kim and sorting things out, I can imagine how they’ll hit it off, “Hey Donny!” shouts Kim as he breaks protocol, when Airforce One lands in Pyongyang and rushes across the airfield to hug Trump, “Hey Donny, nice haircut, who’s yer barber?”

“Some Korean chap by the name of Jing Ling-un!” says Donald with an air of dismissal. “he’s here, traveling with me on Airforce One!

“That’s my cousin!” shouts Kim, “He ran away leaving me with this awful haircut, nobody knows how to cut hair like he does! Could I have him back Donny? I’ll even turn those missiles away from America!”

“You will?”

“Yeah, but you gottagive Jing Ling-un back!”

“Turn those missiles away first!” says Donald every inch a businessman negotiating a deal.

“Turn the missiles away from America!” orders Kim, and Donald watches as the giant missiles are turned towards the ground.

“Well!” says Donald, “Looks like I’ve got time on my hands. You’ve turned the missiles away but I need to stay here a few more days to show I really worked hard at this deal!”

“You giving me your barber is the best deal I could have gotten!” beams Kim. “Hey Donny, you know you got very small hands!”

“So do you!” says Trump.

“D’you know what they say about men who have small hands?” giggled Kim

“What?” asked Donald, suddenly self-conscious.

“That they become best friends with others who have small hands!” laughed Kim as he shows Donald his tiny hands. “And do you know something else with we small hands men?”

“No!” said Trump, hiding his hands now behind his back.

“We always comb our hair in strange ways, so nobody will look at our hands, which is why I want your barber!”

“I don’t think so,” says Donald looking at his hands, “I think I’ll keep the barber, otherwise the ‘Merican people will start looking at my hands!”

“Then I’ll turn the missiles back on America!” says Kim looking dangerous.

Jing Ling-un the barber sensing trouble, comes running, “Boys, boys!” he says cheerfully, “I’ll give you both haircuts, the best in the world, meanwhile why don’t you two play boy games or start exchanging your home spun technologies?”

“Yay!” shouts Trump, “I love boy games and sharing ‘Merican technology! Aim them missiles at Syria will you! I’ll teach you what fun ‘tis to bully small countries!”

“And Donny!” shouts an excited Kim, “I’ll teach you how to keep unwanted outsiders from entering your shores!My Dad and I have been doing that for decades!”

“Yippee!” shouts Trump as he hugs his new friend, “I had a gut feelin’ this trip was gonna be fun..!”

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By Dr. S. Ganesan, Regional Director, IGNOU

 ‘Show me the person, I will show you the rule’. This statement shows the importance of awareness of rules and regulations of our systems. The interpretation of an ‘Order ‘ can be positive or negative, and varies from person to person. To protect one-self, it is highly necessary to have basic knowledge of provisions given in the rules. Hiding the special facilities, exemption schemes, concession methods, etc., are quite common in our day-to-day life. The moment you show your knowledge of law, the scene changes. Ignorance of common man has been taken as advantage by many money making persons. For instance, a simple mistake in an application form, will force you to get a sorry face. To correct the same, you will undergo long process, without knowing right and proper legal approach.

Law Related Courses in IGNOU

Post-Graduate Diploma in Intellectual Property Rights (PGDIPR)

Post Graduate Diploma in Criminal Justice (PGDCJ)

Post Graduate Certificate in Cyber Law (PGCCL)

Post-Graduate Certificate in Patent Practice (PGCPP)

Diploma in Paralegal Practice (DIPP)

Certificate in Human Rights (CHR)

Certificate in Consumer Protection (CCP)

Certificate in International Humanitarian Law (CIHL)

Certificate in Anti Human Trafficking  (CAHT)

Certificate in Co-operation, Co-operative Law (CCLBL)

Certificate in Social Work and Criminal Justice System  (CSWCJS)

Human Rights: To rescue ourselves from becoming a victim, we need to have legal education of various activities. One such simple example is Human Rights education. It sensitizes and educates professionals and social workers who, as a part of their routine duty, interact with masses daily. Besides common man, the specific target groups from law enforcement personnel, police, army, paramilitary forces, lower judiciary and administrative officers, school teachers, and NGO functionaries require the detailed education on Human Rights.

Consumer Protection: Escaping from the risk of getting cheated in a purchase, you need to know ‘consumer protection laws’. The awareness among consumers has been steadily increasing due to mass media, websites, whatsapp, SMS etc,. The consumer protection programme creates overall awareness and training on consumer affairs with special emphasis on consumer protection. It is educating the consumer activists, NGOs, persons working in govt. departments on consumer affairs. It empowers them to file and plead their own cases in consumer redressal forums created under Consumer Protect Act, 1986.

Intellectual Property Rights: The patents, trademarks, domain names, copy right, trade secrets, competition law etc., are part of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR). To acquaint with basic concepts of Intellectual Property Rights, and to develop expertise in IPR related issues, one needs IPR education (Post Graduate Diploma in Intellectual Property Rights).

Criminal Justice:  To specialize in criminal law related to women, children and other vulnerable groups etc., the Post Graduate Diploma in Criminal Justice (PGDCJ) educates the common man. Through this course any graduate will become well-informed citizen and keep pace with emerging developments in criminal justice. It educates about Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the challenges to criminal justice system.

Paralegal Practice: Para-legal practice education develops understanding of laws that offers individuals in their everyday life. Thus, there is a need to develop elementary skills in accessing legal and judicial institutions and processes, so as to use public advocacy by individuals. Basic understanding of Indian Legal System is necessary to protect vulnerable groups.

Information Security: Youth population should experiment and learn the skills and techniques needed for providing protection & security to our information available in the virtual environment. They must be responsible and smart net users. Today, user’s security awareness is emphasized for the following:

               Security one’s own desktop/laptop

               Security one’s own data

               Security one’s connectivity

               Secure browsing /internet transaction/web services etc.

For all these activities, we should have basic knowledge of government rules in Information Technology security and cyber forensics. The Information Security educates on all the above items.

Cyber Law: Now-a-days, the frauds, deception (confidence tricks, scams), child pornography etc., are taking place via internet. Thus, one need to understand, explore, acquire a critical understanding of Cyber Law. The relationship between commerce and cyber space is to be understood to regulate cyber space. Every citizen must know the Information Technology Act, and legal franchises of Right to privacy data security and data protection.

Patent Practice: Patent is the most significant form of Intellectual Property to encourage creativity in science & technology; and protect invention and developments for the creation of new technology/business expansion throughout the world. The knowledge of Indian Patent law is necessary to write patent application. There is also international framework for patents protection.

Social Work and Criminal Justice System: People working in the correctional settings such as jails, family courts, beggars home, special schools for boys/girls, observation home/rescue home etc, need a training - cum - education to link social work and criminal justice system. Especially for the NGO professionals, who are working in the correctional settings, that is, the  social work intervention in correctional settings.

Co-operation, Co-operation Law & Business Laws:  To understand the functioning of the small economic and business enterprise within cooperative framework, one needs knowledge of cooperative law & business laws. It helps to work in cooperative legal framework within which the institutions have to function; and to apply various business laws governing the functioning of economic and business enterprises (Business law as applicable to cooperatives).

Anti Human Trafficking: Every one of us needs to have the awareness about various stake holders/agencies associated with the process of Human Trafficking directly or indirectly. To engage in the process of rehabilitation, prevention and re-integration of Human Trafficking, one needs to have the knowledge on relevant laws and policies. Many professionals are working in government agencies, civil society organizations and cooperative sectors for prevention and reintegration. Qualified persons in this area get job opportunities in international and national NGOs, legal firms related to Human Trafficking, legal aid, juvenile justice, etc.

International Humanitarian Law: The international committee of Red Cross, New Delhi has supported IGNOU to develop an academic programme on International Humanitarian Law. To understand the contemporary issues in South Asian regions with regard to International Humanitarian Law, such type of specialization education is required for professionals already working in the area of International Humanitarian Law.

The legal studies have been increasing its significance and impact on everyday life of common man. The areas mentioned here are some of the areas where each one of us encounters directly or indirectly.  Studying special purpose law related courses make the common man to handle the situations legally. Every one of us may not undergo the Bachelor Degree or Master Degree in law; but, to manage our own issues, the support of law related courses facilities us. Let us empower ourselves through legal studies.

(The author is Regional Director of IGNOU, Regional Centre, Port Blair and can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (M-8900936718}

Some chief ministers seem to have gone past the idea of just governing their states into now becoming authorities on every issue under the sun: The observation by Tripura CM Bijlab Kumar Deb, degrading a former Miss World and commenting about her lack of beauty is disgusting and disturbing. According to this very knowledgeable man, ‘she did not have the beauty’ but still won the title.

And that to my mind, is what rape is all about in this country, especially today.

If, according to the chief minister the beauty queen won without being beautiful, then she obviously won because of her confidence in herself. The confidence to stand tall like the most beautiful woman on earth. The confidence to answer questions thrown at her, and the confidence to look a man in the eye as an equal and more!

This is what these men hate! And what better way to show the woman her place then by using the muscle of their hands, their lashing tongues and the other muscle; that in their minds shows their supremacy!

They walk with a swagger along the paths of our country and say aloud as the CM just did, “Look at that girl, walking like she owns the road!”

“She’s not even beautiful,” they say, “Let us show her, her place!”

And without a bit of remorse they do just that, and the poor girl who has either taken a bus late home,or, had the confidence to walk boldly down a lonely road, is either left dead, bruised, broken or butchered, never to walk with confidence again.

Most often never to walk away alive.

Confident women like Diana Hayden frighten these men, and like the husband who assaults his intelligent wife everyday, because he cannot match her brains, these men too use brawn.


…give them ornamental posts, where they can be controlled!

“You take over as headmistress of the school!” says the managing trustee.

“But sir, it has always been given to a man till now!”

“Yes it still is,” sniggers the trustee to himself, as he puts the strong woman in the post and then controls her day to day activities.

And it needn’t just be principals of schools, does it?

It’s men with inferiority complexes and suddenly there seems to be a lot of them who do this, either pulling the woman off the bicycle of life she rides with confidence or putting them in positions they can be controlled. “Sir,” says the puzzled woman after awhile, “The cycle isn’t moving forward!”

“It’s okay,” says the man, holding onto the handlebar, “it is moving the way I want!”

Yes it is, because the movement they want, the moving forward they want, is not the efforts of the confident woman, but the keeping of that woman either in place,or on the ground, writhing as an assault takes place.

There’s rape going on in this country, and it ain’tonly sexual..!

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It was a huge ad in the newspaper, not just a page, but two; it showed pictures and prices of scores of items that were going at a discount. There were beard trimmers going at two hundred and forty nine bucks, vegetable cutting machines for less than five hundred, air-conditioners going dirt cheap, they said, T-shirts at one ninety nine, and cricket bats starting at two fifty!

Spectacular I thought to myself! It’s a real deal, said my greedy, bargaining mind.

“You’ve got every one of them!” whispered my common sense.

Yes, I had all of them, most in working condition, except the beard trimmer which needed a new set of batteries, and what I didn’t have I didn’t need!

I mean I don’t think I’d be able to do much more to my face with the face massager offered at two hundred and fifty, and how many more almonds would I be able to eat, even if they were from California, as the ad said, before I would hear my wife grumble I ate too much between meals, and that’s why I was so skinny!

Yet, I stared at the ad again and again, wondering why I shouldn’t take part in the lucrative deals, deals and deals offered.

The other day I’d seen a neighbor placing some sofas and dining chairs on his terrace. “They seem good!” I said. “The wife’s fed up with them!” he said. “Are they broken?” I asked. “They’re out of fashion!” he said.

I sank into one of the chairs, “Very comfortable!” I said. “Well she isn’t with them!” he said with a tone of finality, “And I got my bonus yesterday!”

I looked at the poor chairs as they stared back at me, “Thrown out because of a bonus!” they seemed to cry.

A few years ago, I was at an American museum where I read a document by Benjamin Franklin in which he called on the American people to build a nation, using hard work and thrift! Yes thrift; not the spending of money on objects which looked a little newer and fancier than what you had but by developing the quality of using money and other resources you had, carefully and not wastefully!

I remember walking into the house of an old couple, who’s son in the US was an eminent doctor, and who’d asked me to visit his parents in India. “You live a very spartan existence!” I said looking round their sitting room in surprise.

“We’re more than happy!” said the father, “And maybe the money we’ve saved on the unnecessary helped us fund our son’s studies! He or we, have no loans to repay!”

I turnaway from the beard trimmer and vegetable grinding machine seductively glancing at me; quite a bargain what? But I know will destroy my peace of mind, later!

Benjamin Franklin and the old couple nod approvingly..!

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