Is India Becoming a Digital Colony? Conversation with Mohandas Pai.

Is India Becoming a Digital Colony? Conversation with Mohandas Pai.


Namaste! Before you enjoy this episode, please subscribe to my channel and share with your friends. China has decided to have their own Google, Facebook, and their own equivalent of Gmail for lot of reasons. We have heard of hacking. You should assume that if you use a Gmail account, someone is monitoring. From another country. Surprisingly when I have written to senior government people, they reply using a Gmail account. They say confidential, but it’s not. It’s a joke. -Yes. – We haven’t created our own internet infrastructure. One day we will realize our serious mistake in not creating it. With such a large population, a private company that would, probably become a big international player using the large Indian population to get a certain portion of them to a new kind of network perhaps using local languages. If you were to use 20 – 30 languages, and get a lot of people on the network, you would suddenly be a top competitor. Why won’t they do that? Rajiv. I am very scared India has become a digital colony and owned by a Google, Facebook, and Twitter. All our data, whether Amazon, Facebook, Twitter or Google is in servers in America which are accessible by NSA, President Trump and US establishment. They have our digital footprint and know everything about us. They can perform analysis to find out patterns about us. They subpoena the data. –They are doing big data analysis. –Yes, in big way. Our government just doesn’t get it. One of our ministers tweeted proudly that Google is an Indian company. -Yes. -8 of the 10 unicorns are registered outside and owned substantially by foreign capital (US), and not by Indian capital. Even the capitalistic class has not invested enough in technology infrastructure. China however, has made sure that data of Chinese citizens is located in China. -Right. We must have data privacy and data residential law, to make all our data is stored in data centers in India Anything that goes out to anybody else, should be done through the process of law. Now even if Google and other foreign companies stored data here, there would be no objection to them. NSA cannot snoop on them. It will become an international incident because it is against international law. -Today I read your Tweet about Alibaba launching cloud services in India. Bad news. -Yes. India should not allow Alibaba to set up a cloud service for India. Because Alibaba’s and server is licensed by the PLA/ Chinese government, and this is well known. -Right. -They want to set up a data centers here. Our people will say taliyaan, Alibaba aa jao, aa jao. For what? Let’s look at the risks. One is intellectual property theft given that communication can be accessed easily. Second is national security because military and political people are sharing data, discussing strategies and political plans. -Yes. -Another is conversion/ evangelism, as they know who is vulnerable. Next is instigating fights as they know leanings of different people. -And sell false news. – Yes. You look at the battle for the mind which is happening. Churchill, after World War II was over said in Harvard: “The empires of the future would be empires of the mind.” This is happening now. The new imperialism or colonization is mental, of knowledge and ideas. -We need a government who understands and brings appropriate policies. Alibaba setting up data center is ridiculous. Doesn’t the government understand that Alibaba’s data will be accessible to PLA / Chines government? Through Huawei which has the largest part of our network, our data is going outside. And even the US put cookies and so on to send the data outside. Chinese cellphones can be accessed from outside. We must put a barrier. -This is very serious matter as we are becoming cyber colonized. -Yes. This is a very big problem. Rajiv, there is a bigger problem. As US elections have shown, that Google by its algorithm can push news they want me to know. Fake news can be easily spread. Facebook can do that. They have powerful algorithms. Our minds, access to information, access to what we see and read is being controlled. In YouTube when you search for some topics, they send you the topics they want you to see. Many people are susceptible and fall into the trap. Our minds are being controlled. We must fight this battle. It can come by having Indian champions. First we must have data privacy and data residency laws. If Indian government accesses my data, it is fine. But not by American government. -Or Chinese. -Yes. If my rights are infringed I can go to the Indian court. But if they do it in America or China, it which court is going to protect me? -We got no rights. –As a citizen, my country’s legal system should protect me. That’s what government and societal debates should be about. Instead they shut down parliament because of political debates. – What we talked about are serious issues and need national debates. It is the question of our digital identity, mind, and children’s future. We can’t have this country owned by somebody else. – Yes. All this is giving me sleepless nights. – We know about Russian hacking incident Even the United States, with strict counter-measures are vulnerable. We are exceedingly vulnerable and our networks are unsafe. We are not safe. – Maybe they do not want to talk about it out of fear of embarrassment. But I am very suspicious as to how safe our telecom networks, data networks and clouds are. This is one of the biggest threats we have. – Yes. We should sort it out immediately and government should be alert. And Alibaba coming is the last straw. Even information may be biased like Wikipedia. Wikipedia claims to be democratic and that anybody can update. I know for a fact. The page about me was constructed by my opponents. The evidence and citations about my work are by my opponents. My supporters started countering. They were asked to give academic peer reviewed citations. What they really meant peer reviewed by westerners. The Aryan invasion theory Wikipedia page as well as controversial topics about Ayodhya, has only the opposing point of view. When it comes to hard objective facts Wikipedia is very good resource for that. But when some subjectivity or interpretation applied, it is one-sided. – Rajiv, that’s why we must create a group of scholars who can propagate your views. -Yes. The Chinese have scholars who put forth their views. We need such a group of scholars. We have to invest in Indology and civilizational studies. You must get scholars to fight the battle. Otherwise we would have to depend on outsiders and will continue to be enslaved. The enslaving of the mind is very dangerous. We must be fight. We must be equals and not subjugated. But that is happening and we are unaware. I want Indian companies and entrepreneurs to come up. Government must support us in the digital world. We have to do more. Wonderful. A comment closing is that lot of successful industrialists are not giving back to our culture, society, civilization and nature. I am very glad Mohandas Pai is one of the rare examples. There is CSR law and companies are supposed to give certain percentage back. Do you feel that they are really giving back to our civilization? Or is it vested interest? -They are not giving it back because they feel disdain for the Indians. I know Narayan Murthy and Rohan. Murthy library has got all western scholars. Why don’t you have Indian scholars? They say, show me Indian scholar. Ok I will but who will select them? Sheldon. -It’s a chicken egg problem if you have Sheldon Pollock. – I told them why don’t you spend money on developing our society? -See, if we could create software people Why can’t we create our own people? –Our Indologists. – Sheldon Pollock has his own views which are different from ours and he will inject those views. He is qualified and we respect him. But he has his biases. Wendy Doniger has biases. Someone from University of Chicago came and meet me and I told them that Wendy was biased. You talk about ‘Sati’ as an issue in India. It was in Bengal and one other place, not in South India. Jauhar was there in Rajasthan as a reaction to Islamic invasion. They would take women and children to slave markets in central Asia and sell them. There is a book about the slave trade in medieval India and how they didn’t want to be part of the slave trade. -Hindus beyond the Hindukush. -They burnt themselves because they didn’t want to be enslaved. They also believed that their body would be defiled after death. Women went to the pyre for various reasons. Some cases of Sati were genuine. It didn’t mean that whole of India followed it. For example the Salem witch trials. -You cannot make that into American history. -You can’t blame whole America for that. These are all isolated incidents. It’s like the fetish about Dracula in Europe. Now these things have happened and we need our scholars to propagate our views. The Chinese are doing it by funding Confucius institutes. The biggest Indian house gave 50 million to Harvard. I wish they gave equal amount here. Somewhere there is disdain for Indians and craving for world recognition. That is the problem. –It is not wrong to set up something and get recognition. But give an equal amount to this poor country. And develop the system. We are living here. India is our future, the only country we have. This is the country which gives us citizenship, protects us by the rule of law, has given us wealth, and is our matribhumi and karmabhumi. -Yes. It is our bhumi, and we are going to die here. -Absolutely. – It’s very important to give back and I wish more and more people do that Rajiv. Biggest giving back is to preserve our culture. For example, I am a Konkani. I get terribly sad my children don’t speak Konkani. We are small community of 25 lakhs. Our children are marrying outside and not speaking Konkani. They speak English, and are losing their culture. Coming together to preserve our culture, language, cuisine, lullabies, dresses and so on, and to get them involved is difficult. Why? Because we have not invested enough. We don’t have institutions which teach them their language, culture, history, and make them proud. Even though both my sons are very proud of India. I give back because I am a patriot, a nationalist and love my country. What else do I have? Nothing. I am an Indian. I want to live here. This country has given me everything. And I fight for it. You live overseas, but you are fighting for India. You come here and spend your money and time to build India and to preserve its heritage. Since I am at a certain age and thinking about the future, I am moving my intellectual property here. I am finishing my own scholarship there, but next generation scholars will be based here. Swadeshi scholars. We are doing a conference series of which you are a part. We are creating an army of 108 scholars to carry this work forward. We are building a brand and doing digital marketing. We want to develop and market eLearning courses. I want India to become the base of operations, bringing intellectual property and infrastructure back. So I am surprised When other Indians are doing the opposite and taking what is ours and sending it there. If the best Sanskrit studies centers are somewhere else. Then we are back to Macaulay. -The government has not invested. British invested in Sanskrit and Hinduism studies, created the first Sanskrit colleges, and gave grants. They wanted to learn so as to colonize. After independence Nehru dismantled everything in the name of secularism. Secularism doesn’t mean to give up a civilization. It’s the people’s money and must be used for the people. – We have inferiority complex and things that it is important to get rid of our own past and our “backwardness” by becoming westerners. -Our backwardness is due to colonial exploitation. Read Will Durant’s book, “The case for India” which says it’s not because something wrong with us. We were the richest country in the world till 1850. And we are going to be one of the richest countries of the world by 2050. -Right. We are 8.8 trillion dollars. 3rd largest economy globally in PPP /nominal terms. We will be the third largest economy by 2030. By 2030 we will be 10 trillion dollars. We are growing and no one can stop it. This is our future. We need self-belied and have to build ourselves. And create a great society. And that will when leaders give back, preserve our culture, help our people and work with government to improve the ecosystem To make everything inclusive of people and make people benefit. on that fantastic, positive note and hope for the future, thank you very much. -Thank you Rajiv. -It’s always been a pleasure. – Yes indeed and we will continue doing this conversation. -Thank you. -Thank you very much, Namaste. -Namaste.

2 thoughts on “Is India Becoming a Digital Colony? Conversation with Mohandas Pai.

  1. We don't see immediate solution from digital data mining problems created by Google, Facebook, Twitter and other social networks, but we need to create awareness how these companies are exploiting our data with live examples so that people do not take their information as 100 % truth. Most of the people believe information on these sites as true.

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