Dear New Member,|
Welcome to this Discussion List which has been evolving rapidly since it
first began on the 8th of April, 1998.
The list essentially began with a few private debates between a few
individuals (who are now the 'organizers' of this list). We felt that
having a mailing list for all of us would be easier than repeatedly
typing each person's e-mail address each time. Once that was done, we
wanted archives, to prevent our having to store previous debates on our
computers. Once that began, it became feasible to invite our friends into
this list, and once that happened we realized that we could invite
everyone in the world to debate with us.
Clearly, the method of debate has to change from the very informal toward
the formal, if more and more people are to come in and offer their points
of view without total chaos setting in. The initial debates were often
kept at a very humorous and fiesty level, but it appears that some people
misunderstood this style, and hence a more formal style has been adopted.
We Indians love to be serious, and so be it. Let us get serious.
An attempt is being made to cover a few important issues below. If
you have any question not covered here, please post your question on
the main list and hopefully someone will be able to answer it.
- How were the conclusions so far posted on the web page, arrived
First, most points arose by simply being put up by some member of the
list or the other. How did they think of those points is beyond anyone to
speculate. They were gifted, perhaps? A hotline to Heaven?
Well, the moment the fresh points were poured into the soup, all the
others had a choice: to let those points go, or to battle them out. Since
the points are open to battle in perpetuity, this does not put stress on
anyone's time. In other words, anyone can open up a point, even if it was
otherwise 'closed' after debate, any time when he or she pleases.
The previous debates can be accessed through
In the meanwhile volunteers have come in to start the process of
summarizing the debates on various issues, and some of these summaries
are being built up in stages. These summaries will ultimately be the most
useful method of discovering the reasons for a particular outcome.
- Request to participate in disussions and debates:
There was a time when there were no web archives, and you had no choice
but to subscribe, in order to know what was going on. However, now there
is the option to keep a tab of the discussions over the web. You are
encouraged to use that option if you are not interested in directly
participating in the debates. That will also keep your mailbox clean and
On the other hand, your signing up means that you are interested in
debate. Clearly a good manifesto cannot be built without participation and
debate. The idea here is to tap into each other's brain during the spare
time that we have, and to learn from each other as well as frame a
document which can stand on its own two feet. You are requested therefore
to actively participate in the debates. Please follow the Rules of Posting Mail on India_Policy carefully. Of
course, these rules themselves are constantly being revised, and you can
propose modifications as and when you like.
A brief technical note: (1) Please post to email@example.com. (2)
If your post contains the word 'subscribe' or 'unsubscribe' the Majordomo
program considers the mail to be an administrative one and bounces it out.
In other words, if you need to use these words, please put some hyphen or
some other character such as # somewhere in the word, to prevent your mail
from bouncing. (3) All mail is being 'moderated' from the 30th of June. In
other words, it does not go to the list directly, but is 'processed' by
the moderator given that task before being sent
out to everyone. Therefore a lapse of time, upto a couple of days, could
take place. Howevever, if you don't receive a copy of your own mail within
a couple of days, sent to you from India_Policy, please contact
firstname.lastname@example.org for questions. In rare cases, it is
the message might not get posted because it was considered irrelevant, or
of a commercial nature or otherwise not appropriate. You should receive a
little note from the moderator if your message will not be posted. [This
practice has since been stopped due to the volume of postings]
- Anonymous postings:
If you wish to remain anonymous, you could send mail personally to either the President,
Vice Presidents, or any other member of IPI whom you trust, with a request to post the mail
anonymously. Members of the Board of IPI will ensure confidentiality to such posts to the
best of their ability. If you like, you could also use the services of any other member
whom you trust in.
- Wide generalizations are not quite welcome:
Please realize at the outset that the work of getting this list off the
ground and the work of updating the web pages, writing letters to people,
and carrying out appropriate research, has been highly time consuming.
People have put in huge amounts of completely voluntary time and energy
into this project with the hope of involving the People of India. It is a
labor of love at the end of which wide generalizations of a negative
nature about the quality of work can be seen as very unwelcome by most of
Don't complain that you were not warned if, for example, X or Y attacks you very
ferociously for calling this work 'amateurish' or 'superficial,' for example (even if it is
actually so!). There is no point served with such wide generalizations which are neither
here nor there. Instead, all of us would be much better advised to stick to the Rules of
Posting Mail On India_Policy and to offer specific critiques and alternatives. No
one on the list is claiming perfection and as human beings we do get very tired and deserve
some consideration for lapses.
- Volunteerism encouraged:
If you are willing to put in effort to expand these debates, you will be
even more welcome than you can possibly imagine. We are looking for
Indians with two rather rare qualities:
- Indians who do not simply criticize but analyze.
- Indians who are willing to put in some work for a cause like
Last updated:9th of July, 1998.