IT savvy?

 Great Will for China

 In a country where very, very little English is spoken and where IT, at least IT-related hardware is mass produced, the scale (that is, planning, execution and investment) would be extremely difficult for Goa’s bureaucrats and Dayanand Narvekar to even begin to comprehend.  If you doubt this, visit your closest vendor and see for yourself from which country ninety per cent of the accessories of any IT or electronic hardware comes from.  In fact, it is on a scale, which India, that has concentrated on software only, will never be able to emulate.  All this makes you wonder what the hell our chaps do in China to where they fly rather frequently.  Wouldn’t it have been more prudent to have travelled to one of the many successful software technology parks in India or, simply invite the consultants who designed them over? And by the way, MN Rao, advisor & director of the Directorate of Information Technology, whose salary was later hiked to Rs 1,00,000 a month despite protests was tasked with precisely this job.  And yeah, this is the same chap who in September 2007 said Goa would be the first Indian state to have video phones within a year.  In the pipeline he added, were integrated citizen services, and knowledge centres in every village.  Blah, blah, blah.  Guess the Chinese didn’t take our frequent flyers seriously either because they apparently learnt nothing out there.  Velly solly no speaki English, they would have been told!

 Peking Duck

Dayanand Narvekar, ex-minister, IT – China – Rs 3,32,069; RP Pal, ex-secretary, IT – Phillipines – Rs 3,15,632; MN Rao ex-director, ITG – China – Rs 2,15,867; SR Shet, MD, ITG – China – Rs 2,09,132. Total expenditure: Rs 10,72,700.

 Susana De Souza, director, sports – Zhuhai, China- expenditure unknown as it was borne by SGRI, New Delhi, Dubai-Doha Rs 2,08,570; Altinho Gomes, vice chairman, Goa Information Technology Development Corporation (GITDC) – China – Rs 2,68,233; MS Kamat, director, GITDC – China - Rs 2,68,233.  Evidently what Dubai does to our ministers (and bureaucrats) at the helm of the tourism industry, China does to these chaps.  Some would call it water off a ducks back.

 Dubai Anyone?

 Dr Joseph SR De Souza, chief scientist – Gutemberg, Sweden – Rs 86,827; Capt James Braganza, deputy captain of ports – Singapore – Rs 33,325, Dr VN Jindal, dean, Goa Medical College (GMC) – Dubai – Rs 81,908, Dusseldorf – Rs 1,42,676; Dr Maria Prisca Silveira, associate professor, GMC – Dusseldorf - Rs 1,50,000; Dr NG Dubashi, professor, GMC – Dubai – Rs 81,908; Dr Wise Pinto, professor, GMC – Dubai –Rs 81,908; Dr A Khandeparkar, associate professor, GMC – Dubai – Rs 81,908.

‘Cannes’ Do Anytime

If there was an Oscar for self-indulgence in entertainment at the tax payers cost, the Entertainment Society of Goa (ESG) would win it year in, year out, without a doubt.  The Kings and Queens of Entertainment spent a whopping Rs 19,37,000 to check out Cannes in the two years 2007-08, 2008-09 reviewed here.  And after going there every year, they still haven’t learnt to recognize Ben Kingsley although he won an Oscar for the Richard Attenborough’s biopic on Gandhi that was made in 1982 and which Doordarshan telecasts every Independence Day!  It happened at our very own International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Panjim.

All they discovered was how to roll out the Red Carpet which brings me to the point, this government should despite itself spend at least a tiny fraction of what is spent each year on IFFI to roll out a layer (thin will do) of tar on the Ribandar road leading to Old Goa.  There is no estimate of how many Goan Catholics (including pilgrim tourists) attend the novenas beginning November 24 and up to St Francis Xavier’s feast on December 3, but the number of those who don’t is probably easier to guess.  Sadly, for two years now the winding Ribandar stretch particularly stays potholed as ever and this year was crudely repaired with an uneven mix of tar and stone pounded into the potholes with a hand held implement!  This is the way this government treats the aam aadmi.  Not so for the rich and famous at IFFI, which I think even this insensitive government must know is rapidly losing its Mojo.

Diwan Chand, special secretary, information & publicity – Cannes – Rs 2,48,000; Nandini Paliwal, ex-CEO, ESG – Cannes – Rs 2,48,000; Nikhil Dessai, GM, ESG – Cannes – Rs 2,48,000; Ethel D’Costa, ex-PRO, ESG – Cannes – Rs 2,48,000; Filip Neri Rodrigues, minister, water resources, vice chairman, ESG – Cannes - Rs 3,15,000; Manguirish Pai Raikar, member, ESG – Cannes – Rs 3,15,000; Nikhil Dessai, GM, ESG – Cannes – Rs 3,15,000.