- IPL spot-fixing case: Net widens, police watching 3 more players, other bookies
- IPL 2013: Imperious Brad Hodge powers Rajasthan Royals to qualifier
- Sonia Gandhi, PM Manmohan Singh slam BJP for disrupting Parliament, stalling bills
- IPL spot-fixing: 'Bookie' Vindoo was close to BCCI chief's son-in-law, say cops
- Jessica Lall case: Shayan Munshi to face perjury trial
I'm tired of endless speculation about news that makes no sense. Like, why is the BJP doggedly persisting in disrupting Parliament and asking for the Prime Minister's head? The strategy has never paid off in the past. And now, it transpires that Coalgate happened because the Opposition had resisted the auction route. Such dreary politics doesn't merit speculative airtime.
Exhausted by ennui, I switched to more exotic channels, swept through BBC and CNN (yes, they look exotic from where I sit, that's geography) and stopped dead on Al Jazeera's 101 East. This episode concerned Japan's battle against the Yakuza, the network of criminal gangs which have infiltrated business and government and runs up annual revenues of $9 billion, which is approximately the GDP of Zimbabwe. But this was no black-and-white programme.
Last year, Japan instituted new laws criminalising dealings which benefit the Yakuza or anyone associated with them. It has press-ganged the public into a battle which cannot be won otherwise. Even a bartender who was interviewed is required not to serve Yakuza patrons, though how he identifies them is a mystery.
But the government is not winning because the Yakuza benefit everyone, even the police. A journalist explains that 10,000 police officers retire every year and are recruited by corporates to deal with Yakuza shareholders who try to influence policy. The Yakuza provide the policeman's retirement plan.
This new Japanese law is so different from the European way. Italy had smashed the mafia by creating a legal superstructure completely insulated from the people, led by a public prosecutor protected by armed police. In contrast, Japan is criminalising its people for being involved with a network of organisations which have been embedded in everyday life from Edo times. In fact, the police have earlier used them as its partners. As an iconic retired policeman explains ó he is so iconic that he features in manga ó "We were supposed to make arrests right to the top, but we told them that we would draw the line; in return, they told us what had really happened."
- Paddy shortfall blamed for mystery death of procurement officer
- 'Bookie' Vindoo was close to BCCI chiefís son-in-law: cops
- Net widens, police watching three more players, new set of bookies
- Suspected Islamists behead soldier on London street
- Malegaon 2006 case: NIA names four right wing terror suspects
- BJP invokes 'sarcasm, ridicule' against PM