THUS SPAKE
Thus Spake

THUS SPAKE

Pennews

The spectacle of reaction coming from German theology is so misguided and ill-willed that I would prefer to speak on it…I would rather not analyse the actual reasons why people want to silence my voice.

__ Traditionalist former Pope Benedict XVI

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While India is making every effort to save the life of every citizen, it is also taking its global obligations seriously.

__ Narendra Modi, Indian PM

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Will some people be affected? Yes. Will some people be affected badly? Yes. ..But we have to get our country open and we have to get it open soon. ……I created with a lot of very other talented people and the people of our country the greatest economy in the history of the world. The greatest that we’ve ever had. And one day they said, “we have to close our country”. Well, now it’s time to open up.

__ Donald Trump, US President

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Migrants have been vilified as a source of the virus – and then denied access to medical treatment.

__ Antonio Gueterres, UN Secretary General

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These are not the first times that we’ve had a world exposed to viruses as a result of failures in a Chinese lab. And so, while the intelligence community continues to do its work, they should continue to do that, verify so that we are certain, I can tell you that there is a significant amount of evidence that this came from that laboratory in Wuhan.

__ Mike Pompeo, US Secretary of State

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Just think – if China was not guilty of any cover up wouldn’t it be welcoming the growing international calls for an independent enquiry and offering to assist in such a probe? This would give China a chance to clear the air with the rest of the world. Instead, Beijing seems to be showcasing its guilt by belligerently rejecting the plans for such an enquiry and threatening economic reprisals.

__Brahma Chellaney, Geostrategist

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These are not the first times that we’ve had a world exposed to viruses as a result of failures in a Chinese lab. And so, while the intelligence community continues to do its work, they should continue to do that , verify so that we are certain, I can tell you that there is a significant amount of evidence that this came from that laboratory in Wuhan.

__Mike Pompeo, US Secretary of State

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Pakistan is going through a withering process of isolationism, which is another word for turning inwards and showing hostility towards anything smelling foreignness. Liberalisation is under attack and liberal education is already not in favour even in the private sector stream where the financiers know it pays to create space for ideology and uniformity of the mind.

__ Khaled Ahmed, Consulting Editor, Newsweek, Pakistan

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India should talk to Taliban, discuss terror concerns directly.

__ Zalmay Khalilzad, US Special Representative

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After resisting our appeals, especially through statements of the Chief Economic Adviser, the government has finally decided to borrow an additional amount of Rs.4.2 lakh crores taking the projected fiscal deficit to 5.38 %. We welcome the decision. It is not enough to borrow more, unless the amount is used to provide relief to the poor and restrict the economy. We look forward to the revised expenditure budget for 2020-21.

__P. Chidambaram, Congress leader and former finance minister

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What is the great urgency in ramming such a far-reaching notification through at a time of grave national crisis? I know orders to push through are coming from elsewhere but surely you (Environ Minister Prakash Javadekar) can fulfil your dharma as minister responsible for protecting the environment.

__ Jairam Rameh, Congress leader and former Union Minister

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A lot of us have been saying that we need a stimulus package. That is what the US is doing, Japan is doing, Europe is doing. We haven’t decided on a large enough stimulus package. We are still talking about 1% of GDP. The US has gone for 10% of GDP.

__Nobel laureate Abhijit Bannerjee

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PICK OF THE WEEK

When the government can spend nearly 100 crore on transport and food for just one public programme in Gujarat, when the rail ministry has the largesse to donate Rs.151 crore to the PM’s Corona Fund then why can’t these essential members of our nation’s fabric be given a fraction of the same courtesy especially free rail travel, at this hour of acute distress.

__ Sonia Gandhi, Congress President

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We should be driven by need, not affordability.

__ Arvind Subramaniam, former CEA

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How we are going to make sure that this cure doesn’t rise is going to be crucial. What we have managed to do is buy time. But we are still seeing a rise in the number of cases, therefore, we need to be cautious as go into May and June.

__Dr. Randeep Guleria, Director, AIIMS, Delhi.

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A principal reason for Kerala’s amazing performance in “flattening the curve” is their robust system of effective devolution that has enabled the Kudumbasree programme to function in association with panchayats, as state finance minister Thomas Isaac emphasized in a recent article in these columns (The Indian Express). Now that the easing of the lock out appears to be in a flood of migrant workers thankfully returning to their native villages, it becomes even more important to fully involve village panchayats (and municipalities as institutions of self government –243W) in the anti-COVID-19 campaign.

__ Mani Shankar Aiyar, Congress leader and former Union Minister

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Respected @ Narendra Modiji please see CEO @ Niti Ayog is promoting e-pharmacies # ArogyaSetuApp which are illegally functioning in India.. It is unfortunate tht this App for fighting ChineseVirus is made to fight foreign funded E-pharmacies.

__ Ashwani Mahajan, National Co-convenor, Swadeshii Jagran Manch, in a tweet

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Worrying about higher inflation and interest rates when credit growth has collapsed and demand is tepid is the opposite of sound economic thinking.

__ Sriram Ramakrishnan, Times group

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Many businesses tend to see quality assurances as an avoidable cost. They pay the price by being lower in the value chain. Quality assurance is no longer a matter of choice. The one sector where few businesses have learnt this lesson is the pharma industry. If Indian physicians prefer to prescribe branded drugs, this is because suppliers of generic medicines have been unable to build trust in the quality of their products.

__ Meeta Ravichandran, IAS officer of 1990 batch

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Diverting rice to produce ethanol during the pandemic is unethical. Surplus grains should be used to feed those in distress.

__ Siraj Hussain, Senior Visiting Fellow and Ajit Ranade, Senior Fellow at the Takshashila Institution

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Would not have accepted (RS seat)…nobody would offer it to me.

__ Justice Deepak Gupta, former Judge of Supreme Court of India

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Online courts have not caught on in the absence of any compelling need to do so. The lockdown has provided that opportunity, which should be seized. The present ongoing “experiment” has, however, indicated that the major problem with online courts is unfamiliarity with online communication. Judges are simply not used to consciously facing a camera generally and in particular, while hearing a case.

__ Justice Madan Lokur, former judge of the Supreme Court of India

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GEM OF THE WEEK

The materialistic world view imposed on the entire world can push to newer cycles of economic depression and environmental degradation. In such a scenario, it is prudent that we develop a new model based on self-reliance and Swadeshi.

__ Dattatreya Hosabale, Jt. General Secretary, RSS

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Modi’s goal of making India Vishwaguru won’t transform lives of Indians.

__ Shivshankar Menon, former foreign secretary

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People of Sikkim have been extremely disciplined, this is a reason for our success.

__ Prem Singh Tamang, Sikkim CM

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With globalization stuttering, there are worrying implications for poverty reduction and employment.

__ Bibek Debroy, Chairman, Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister

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Every decision seems to flow only from the PMO, perhaps to project a single powerful leader. This needs to change.

__ V. Raghunathan, Director, Schulich School of Business, India Programme

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Balancing the lives vs. livelihoods trade-off will be tougher the longer the trade-off continues.

__ Alok Ray, former Professor of Economics, IIM, Calcutta and Cornell University, US

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I can’t risk lives of my policemen to manage crowd at liquor shops.

__ S.N.Shrivastava, Delhi Police Commissioner

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One needs to examine and understand the resilience of the board exams. In a grossly unequal society like India, they serve a very important social function of maintaining cohesiveness among people who are hierarchically positioned and therefore, differentially rewarded. Since the number of aspirants far outweigh the opportunities available, exam results prevent a large number of students fulfilling their aspirations of moving up the social ladder.

__ Disha Nawani, Professor and Dean, School of Education, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai

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QUOTE FOR THE WEEK

Faith is of three types. One is faith in one self, another is faith in goodness of people around you, third is faith in a power higher than us. Lack of faith in the higher power will weaken faith in oneself as well, and causes fear and anxiety.

__ Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

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