Posts Tagged ‘Mumbai’

The prestigious Harvard University has selected an Indian portal called for its research on transparency. Hollie Gilman, a doctoral student at the Harvard University Department of Government, who was in India for the purpose of research, told: “I found to be a database of information on politicians, their work and their track record. I also found that the portal has over 100,000 visitors – who would have made an informed decision in electing their leader.”

The portal was envisaged by Vivek Gilani, 33. Launched in 2008, the portal brags of more than 4,500 news reports from 12 newspapers, tracking nearly 1,500 politicians in the country’s commercial capital, Mumbai. It also has links to more than 400 video interviews of MPs, legislators, officials of the municipal corporation and other candidates directly linked with Mumbai. Another strengths being a record the elected representatives’ attendance in the legislature, the number of questions he/she raised during the working hours as also the criminal record of any candidate.

Gilani was working for a US firm when he thought that people generally do not vote as they do not know much about the candidates. And even if they do possess some knowledge, it is mere hearsay or pure guesswork. So he started accumulating information on various politicians in the city so that he could vote for the most deserving contender.

Hollie Gilman of Harvard, who has worked for the Barack Obama and Hilary Clinton’s election campaigns in the past, said that making this information available to the masses is itself a great effort. As also the participation and huge number of visitors to the portal speaks volumes of its transparency and accountability.

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Rajkumar College in Rajkot declares a holiday to mourn the death of former student DIG Ashok Kamte

File photograph of DIG Ashok Kamte who was killed in terrorist attack in Mumbai

As brave in death as he was in life. That’s how DIG Ashok Kamte, who laid down his life during a gunbattle against terrorists in Mumbai, will be remembered as by his alma mater: Raj Kumar College (RKC) in Rajkot.

The college declared a holiday to pay homage to former student. RKC principal Vinod Thakkar said, “Ashok studied here from 1972 to 1977. He left after Std VIII.”

A newspaper clipping of Ashok Kamte being named as the captain of RKC powerlifting team
Excellence was Kamte’s middle name. He always stood first in class but was not a bookworm. “Ashok won many prestigious cups at RKC as he was very good at athletics, swimming and cricket, too,” the Principal said. He was also selected in the Indian team for the World Junior Power Lifting Championship in 1987.

Kamte, a 1989 batch IPS officer of Maharashtra cadre, was one of those officers who loved challenges.  The principal added, “When we received the news of his death on Thursday morning, we decided to constitute a ‘Chivalry Award’ in his name this year itself. He was a great athlete and one of the brightest students in his batch.”

Having undergone special training for negotiating hostage situations, Kamte was summoned late on Wednesday to  deal with terrorists holed up in Mumbai buildings. He undertook the operation at Metro Cinema near Cama Hospital in Mumbai, and was shot down in the line of duty.

Survived by his wife and two children,Kamte — who had also served as Commissioner of Solapur — was always known to be in the thick of action.

Over 400 fans on his Orkut profile shows that Kamte enjoyed great respect and love. “He was a one-man army who not only controlled the criminals of Solapur, but the whole state. I ask  God to bless shaheed Ashok Kamte and make his dream of  ‘a crime-free India’ a reality. Until his last breath, he helped us live a peaceful life,” wrote one of his fans on the social networking site.  Another fan wrote: “Commissioner Ashok Kamte’s name terrified anti-social elements. He is a real hero. His demise is painful. May his great soul rest in peace.”

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