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Question

Sir I think Kejriwal is a very shrewd and ruthless politician and here is why. He knows that Yadav and Bhushan are too polite and "nice" to really fight back, so he can do what he pleases to them.

Secondly he also knows that while this might cause heartburn among some liberal intellectuals who support AAP or some idealistic young volunteers, his real constituency is neither of these. It is the urban poor. Once he delivers affordable public services to them, they will be loyal to him. The rest of us can take a walk, no matter how disturbed we may be at his machinations. Wondering if you agree.

Posted By: Delhite  |  Posted On: 05 Mar 2015  |  City: Delhi

Answer

 That's a shrewd analysis. I have no real disagreements with your perspective. 
 

Question

Kejriwal's humiliating ousting of Yadav and Bhushan might be par for the course in politics. But some of the details in the TOI and FirstPost stories on it are very telling about Kejriwal. They unmask him as an unforgiving and petty leader who prefers a coterie of second-rate yes-men firmly under his thumb. And the actual issues Bhushan and Yadav raised (funding transparency, candidates with criminal records), that Kejriwal has himself long championed, were not even bothered with in the ousting process. So much for political principles. Broadly, will this episode help him ("strong leader"), make no difference or hurt him?

Posted By: Ashish  |  Posted On: 05 Mar 2015  |  City: Noida

Answer

 Look at it this way. When India Against Corruption first appeared, its ostensible leader was Anna Hazare. Its central committee consisted of Kejriwal, the two Bhushans, Kiran Bedi and Justice Hegde. Its spokesperson on TV was Shazia Ilmi. Its intellectual mentor was Yogendra Yadav. 
 
Which of these people still occupies a significant position in AAP? 
 
That should answer your question. 
 

Question

Just finished reading your book. It is very well written. And I will read it again few weeks later.I was very impressed with the font size selection. it made reading an even better experience. Well done.

Posted By: Manish Sharma  |  Posted On: 04 Mar 2015  |  City: Mumbai

Answer

 Thank you so much. I wanted it to be the kind of book you could read in one go. 
 

Question

Hi Vir,
According to Swami Vivekanand, "there was a time in this very India when, without eating beef, no Brahmin could remain a Brahmin; you read in the Vedas how, when a Sannyasin, a king, or a great man came into a house, the best bullock was killed; how in time it was found that as we were an agricultural race, killing the best bulls meant annihilation of the race. Therefore the practice was stopped, and a voice was raised against the killing of cows. Sometimes we find existing then what we now consider the most horrible customs." (Lectures from Colombo to Almora)
The Maharashtra Animal Preservation (Amendment) Act 1995, which bans cow slaughter and beef consumption is an outrageous violation of the constitutionally guaran

Posted By: Vivek L Dev  |  Posted On: 04 Mar 2015  |  City: Mumbai

Answer

 I am not sure the right to eat beef is guaranteed by the Constitution. But why single out Maharashtra? The new Act is only a slight extension of anti-cow slaughter legislation passed in 1976. Similar laws exist in most Indian states with the notable exceptions of the north-east, Bengal and Kerala. 
 
For the record, however, I oppose the ban. 

Question

I've admired your articles on Superman and Batman movies. Who is your favourite superhero? Do you prefer the Marvel universe or the DC universe? Would you write an article on the rivalry between the two franchises?

Posted By: Anant Modgil   |  Posted On: 03 Mar 2015  |  City: Chandigarh

Answer

  It's a good idea but I am a hardcore DC fan so I am not sure that I can provide an unbiased view. 

Question

Dear Vir Ji, I have read your article mentioning Fratelli Sangiovese. Seeing as you apoved of it, I tried the same. I was surprised at the taste of it. is that the correct taste of a good red? I was really liking a particular brand of Zinfandel, but now that is not available, and what is available is too sour. Of course, some barman suggested a rose, but that is not the same as the Zinf i tried and liked. what do you think about Zinfs in general?

Posted By: Vish  |  Posted On: 02 Mar 2015  |  City: Delhi

Answer

 There is no such thing as one correct taste for one red wine. Different wines taste different. Cannot help you with a recommendation for Zinfandel, I am afraid. One of my many failings is that I do not like still rose wines and do not drink anything made from the Zinfandel grape. Apologies. 
 

Question

Hi Vir.....do you feel that Mukul Roy factor can destabilise the TMC in Bengal? Can BJP make a break through without having a face in the party in Bengal?

Posted By: Rajib Chatterjee  |  Posted On: 02 Mar 2015  |  City: Kolkata

Answer

 No, and no. I don't think the Mukul Roy factor will make a huge difference to the party's popularity at large. The BJP is certainly emerging as a significant opposition party with the collapse of the Congress.  But a breakthrough is still some years away. 
 

Question

Sir, Mandate subtly questions Indira's supposed "decisiveness". (Haksar giving her courage vs. the Syndicate and her failure to seize earlier chances in Amritsar)
But even on economic policy, there's an excellent Business Standard article showing how from 1969-1974 Indira's communist advisor Kumaramangalam drove the leftward turn, and after his '74 death, from 1974-76 (and later 1980-84) her centrist advisors started course correcting. So did she have any real sense of direction of her own on economic policy? And in general, did she have the vision or decisiveness to use her two mandates of 1971 and 1980 for substantive change in India?

Posted By: Chandrabhan  |  Posted On: 02 Mar 2015  |  City: NCR

Answer

 My view of Mrs Gandhi is that on many crucial issues she was like a magician, in that she went from trick to trick, without achieving anything substantial. So yes, I would broadly agree with those views.

Question

Hi Vir,
I bought digital copy your book 'Mandate' from Google Play. It had 101 pages and 7 Chapters. But on Amazon site, the paperback edition seems to be of 156 pages. Am i missing something?

Posted By: sanjeet  |  Posted On: 02 Mar 2015  |  City: mumbai

Answer

 My guess is that the number of words per page differ between the two. But will check. 
 

Question

Hi Vir, this may seem like a silly question but i don’t really know whats the proper way to address your waiter? I mean at my local club i usually call them boss or bhaiya or arey suno. Would it be offensive to simply call them waiter or boy? Dont really know the proper etiquette here. How do you do it and is there a difference between a five star hotel or say a sports club or someplace less formal. Whats the norm abroad?

Posted By: Vikram  |  Posted On: 02 Mar 2015  |  City: nagpur

Answer

 There should be no difference in how you address a waiter, regardless of where you are. I tend to say 'Excuse me' when I want to attract a waiter's attention. If the waiter has a name badge, then please address him or her by name. At places where the waiters only speak Hindi, I say 'Bhaiyya'. 
 

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