Sexually Transmitted Political Leadership

namfrel-v2n14-dynastyAbout a month back, I got an opportunity to listen to a talk given by Manish Sabharwal, the Chairman and Co-founder of Teamlease, an Indian Fortune 500 company, that provides human resources services to its clients and employs more than 125,000 people. Manish is a member of the National Skill Mission chaired by the Prime Minister of India and serves on various state and central government committees on education, employment and employability. I also got a chance to speak with him before and after the talk on themes such as employability, governance, and public policy. He spoke about the need for urbanization and creating new cities with a population of more than a million people. He also said that this could be achieved faster with decentralization – 29 chief ministers are more important than one Prime Minister, but the real solution lies in creating 100 real mayors. One of the anecdotes that I found particularly interesting was this – In 1924, Jawaharlal Nehru was the mayor of Allahabad, Rajendra Prasad was the mayor of Patna, C.R. Das was the mayor of Calcutta, and Sardar Patel was the mayor of Ahmedabad. There are letters from Nehru that talk about street lights and Patel about sanitation because mayoral elections were fought on issues like infrastructure. Then he added with a mischievous smile, “Can you imagine Nehru’s great-grandson writing letters about street lights in Delhi? What that says is that sexually transmitted Prime Minister-ship does not work.” Continue reading

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Very Very Special Laxman

October 5, 2010

Test Match – India vs. Australia at Mohali

Day 5 Pitch

India 124/8 chasing 216 for victory.

With all hopes of a victory extinguished, its that man again who rises to the occasion. That same man who has bailed India out of sticky situations in the past. That same man who has dug his team out of a hole innumerable times. That same man who thrives under pressure. That same man who delivers when the chips are down. That same man who is Very Very Special. Continue reading