Saturday, August 22, 2009

Bindeshwar Pathak

Bindeshwar who?
You are unlikely to know this name unless you are preparing for the Civil Services Exams or you read newspapers till page 12.
Bindeshwar Pathak has been awarded the 2009 Stockholm Water Prize - equivalent to Nobel Prize on Environmental Issues. And the headline (if you can call it that at page 12 of the Times of India) merely mentions "Sanitation expert bags Water Prize" - no name in the headline. Contrast this with the star status accorded to Amartya Sen for a pseudo-Nobel Prize on Economics. This in an era when environmental issues need to be addressed with screaming headlines on the front pages of every newspaper and magazine (imagine the awareness that would come if everyday the headlines of all newspapers talk of environmental issues.)

Still do not know who Bindeshwar Pathak is?
Seen Sulabh Toilets?
Ah! Now you know him!

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4 comments:

Indian Pundit said...

""Contrast this with the star status accorded to Amartya Sen for a pseudo-Nobel Prize on Economics.""

Hey Amitabh what do u mean by "pseudo" Nobel prize?why are u calling it pseudo??

i am a little surprised.......

""This in an era when environmental issues need to be addressed with screaming headlines on the front pages of every newspaper and magazine""

Agreed.

Amitabh Mukherjee said...

Because it is "pseudo". Nobel Prize - as I understand - was to be given to contribution that are fundamental in nature and have far reaching consequences. In this context I understand why prize given to Sciences and Peace (though why mathematics was excluded is beyond me). The 'contribution' by economists, by and large, does not fall in the category of fundamental and far reaching. There are some economists who definitely deserve this award - John Nash's name comes immediately to mind. I also find it difficult to believe that every year there is one economist who has contributed something fundamental.

Hmmmm... Just wondering: why not a Nobel Prize for Management. That is also not that different from Economics. Both are largely post-facto art form.

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Shas said...

Its sad that media is more interested in sensationalism. They would rather give space to bollywood actor for some trivial reason than highlight serious issues.

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