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Knee-jerk responses - varnamvarnam
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Knee-jerk responses

When The Da Vinci Code was about to be released in India,  some Christian organizations made a big fuss about it. Concerned about the consequences, the  some states like Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Meghalaya and Nagaland  banned the movie even though it was cleared by the censor board. Later the High Court of Andra Pradesh gave a well deserved lecture to the Government of YSR Reddy saying that “The Constitution does not confer or tolerate such individualized hyper-sensitive private censor intrusion into and regulation of guaranteed freedom of others”. The Chennai High Court said that it would be dangerous to allow the State to straitjacket the right to freedom of expression.

Due to the intervention by the courts, the movie was released. Kerala did not join this madness and allowed the movie to be released and it did very well. Newton’s third law states that if you don’t have a knee jerk reaction for one controversy, you can always do it for another.

When an NGO lab came up with test results that 11 soft drink brands had pesticide residues more than permissible limits by BIS standards, Kerala State Govt. banned the production and selling of Coke and Pepsi. In a strange twist the other nine brands (Pepsi Caffechino, Mountain Dew, Mirinda Orange, Mirinda Lemon, Duke Lemonade, 7 Up, Thums Up, Limca and Fanta) in which pesticide residue was detected by CSE were not banned. Now both Coke and Pepsi are selling for large prices in the black market.

The state government did not even bother to wait for reports of testing from a Govt. lab before putting the ban order. They did not even question if CSE is qualified to perform these tests. What if I conduct some tests in my home tomorrow and clear both Pepsi and Coke? Will the Govt. withdraw the ban? The West Bengal Govt. in the mean time collected samples from state and sent it to different labs for testing and the results say that the drinks are safe. So why is one Communist state banning the product while the other has no problem with it?

“Bengal isn’t Kerala. There is a lot of difference between the two states. The people in Kerala speak a different language,”Bose said after a Left Front meeting in Kolkata on Wednesday.[Colas get ‘Lal Salaam’ in Bengal]

Who can disagree with that?

See Also: Anand has a better explanation.


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