++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ ___ ___ /__/\ ___ /__/\ _\_ \:\ / /\ \ \:\ /__/\ \:\ / /:/ \ \:\ _\_ \:\ \:\ /__/::\ _____\__\:\ /__/\ \:\ \:\ \__\/\:\__ /__/::::::::\ \ \:\ \:\/:/ \ \:\/\ \ \:\~~\~~\/ \ \:\ \::/ \__\::/ \ \:\ ~~~ \ \:\/:/ /__/:/ \ \:\ \ \::/ \__\/ \ \:\ \__\/ \__\/ WORLDWIDE INDIAN NETWORK Frequently Asked Questions ("task15") -------------------------------------- MN -- There are already a large number of Indian associations in the US and Canada. In addition there are associations devoted to people from a particular region. Is the WIN going to interact with them, help them, or what? NC -- The WIN will try to interact with all of them and do our best to help them. In fact this is the main objective of a network. We would like to maintain a list of all Indian associations, their objectives, and brief biographies on- line, for the benefit of our members and the entire Indian community. -------- MN -- Some people may not take kindly to "college students" and just shrug us off. NC -- Our members come from a wide range of professional disciplines and geographic areas. The Network consists of students, professors, engineers, scientists, physicians, accountants, businessmen, journalists, etc. Moreover, if they do not take you kindly, so be it. Remember, you are the one who is trying to do them a favor and not the other way around. -------- MN -- Haven't other organizations already tried to do what the WIN plans to? NC -- Not to our knowledge. Although there are organizations for various political, social, and cultural concerns, and even some umbrella organizations in the United States, there is no network that tries to unite Indians from all over the world. Part of our objective is to place on- line a list of all resources that are available to the Indian community. -------- MN -- In what way can we do better? NC -- We are going to do something that none has done before. We are going to unite all Indians in a single network. And WIN will be action oriented -- no nonsense, no jokes, and no recipes. All members will participate collectively in certain constructive actions that will benefit Indians not only in the United States, but also around the world. -------- MN -- Does WIN have any political leanings? NC -- No. -------- MN -- By this I mean is WIN inclined towards Democrats or Republicans in the United States, or, Cong(I)/LF/BJP in India? NC -- WIN is inclined towards India. It is not inclined towards Democrats, or Republicans, or Liberals, or Conservatives in the United States. Also, it is not inclined towards Congress, or Communists, or Left Front, or Right Front in India. -------- MN -- It is a little surprising to see that you have only "n" addresses in the list, when there are thousands of Indians reading the bulletin boards. This may have to do with the tone of your first message. I think people might have considered it to be too aggressive. A more reasonable call that emphasizes the positive elements of the cohesiveness of a community would attract more members. NC -- The first message is definitely the most important message any person is going to receive from the Network. Therefore, we tried to be as constructive in the first message as possible. However, we have limitations (see MN02 of "task10"). Therefore, we ask all members to help us improve the recruiting message ("task00"). -------- MN -- I hope women are equally welcome to the Network. Some people may be put off by frequent references to "he," "him," etc. NC -- The frequent use of "he," "him," etc are unfortunate consequences of the English language. All people of Asian Indian ancestry, irrespective of gender, caste, religious beliefs, or language, are welcome to the Network. -------- MN -- One of the responsibilities of the members you mentioned (in MN05 of "task10") is to find e-mail addresses of as many Indians as possible and mail them the recruiting message ("task00"). According to you, a single desi should not receive the message many times. But how does one know that some other member has not already mailed him the recruiting message? NC -- I have a file of e-mail addresses of all Indians who I sent the recruiting message ("task00") to. Every time I send the message to some prospects, I check those addresses against the master file. I think all other members should follow the same procedure. At present it is not possible for me to keep a centralized filing system of all people who have been contacted by the Network. If you or any other member is willing to take up this responsibility, you have my support. -------- MN -- One of my friends is very interested in issues related to Kashmir. Could you please include him in the Kashmir Committee? NC -- Membership in the Network isn't free: all members have agreed to help us in this project. Membership in any committee isn't free either: members have agreed to take an active participation in the Committee. Rules to join the Network are spelled out in task00. Also, rules to join any committee are spelled out in task51 (see http:// theory.stanford.edu/people/arjun/WIN.html). -------- MN -- Being an Indian does not mean I defend every action taken by the Government of India or by pro-India lobbies. We have to weigh each issue on rational terms and decide what to act on. If we fail to do that, we would be no better than those who blindly follow the extremist dictates of certain militant organizations lobbying in the United States. NC -- We are in complete agreement with you. The Network weighs each issue very carefully, and with member input decides what actions to take. We have a Panel of Judges (see "task20") and a Board of Editors (see "task21") to review issues, and we encourage all members to take an active part in the decision making process. -------- MN -- The bottom line is that though we are a group, we have to assure the members that their INDIVIDUALITY is intact. For example, if we plan to protest an anti-Indian legislation, I should have the liberty to support or oppose the protest and still be a member. In other words, being a member of WIN does not mean I unconditionally support the decision of WIN. Also, we should be able to go ahead with plans even if some of the members do not agree to it. NC -- Once again we agree with you wholeheartedly. We will try our very best to ensure and preserve the rights of all members. -------- MN -- NRI investments are very important for India. While such discussions do go on in SCI to some extent, we can probably help too. NC -- Oh, yes. People discuss some very serious matters on SCI. But the WIN's objective is to take concrete actions. If you have any suggestions on what actions the Network should take, please contact the Panel of Judges (see "task50"). -------- MN -- We should think about how we can put pressure on the Indian government itself. On a long term basis, we should be able to bring about some changes in India (provided we don't ask for the moon!). My priorities are education and social justice. NC -- These are excellent goals for the Network. For now we are still young and are trying to concentrate on issues affecting Indians in the United States. -------- MN -- Another thing we should work on, is to revitalize the Indian Embassy in the US. I have heard a number of complaints against the embassy personnel, mainly about inefficiency and rudeness. NC -- This is a very good suggestion. The Network can definitely undertake a project like this in the future. You and I alone cannot change the conditions at the Indian Embassy. But a strong network of Indians can have a significant impact. -------- MN -- In my opinion, the hierarchical structure of this network is a model of the many bureaucratic systems in vogue. It defines a pyramidal structure of "power." If we are planning to work as a group of responsible individuals, we have to be "equal" in every way. NC -- We are definitely "equal" in every way. But if you want to accomplish something constructive, you have to operate within an organizational structure. On the other hand, if you want to talk, and talk, and talk, and talk, and talk -- like people do on the net -- then you don't need any organizational structure. And in order for the Network to be practical and action-oriented, I came up with the following structure: NC --> RC --> ZC --> AC --> MN --> PD Center --> people 1 10 100 1K 1K+ 1K+ 900K+ -------- MN -- It is probably the best way to manage a large group. But while we are a fairly small group, we should be able to interact with each other without having to go through a number of intermediate points. NC -- Today we are fairly small. But eventually we will become substantially larger. There are more than 900,000 Indians in the United States. And throughout the world there are more than 900 million of us. Therefore, to unite all Indians in a single network is enormously difficult and extremely complex. Without a proper structure, this task cannot be accomplished. -------- MN -- I believe that a minor change in the organizational structure of the Network would be more appropriate. The Regional Coordinator position should be replaced by that of State Coordinators. The reason I am suggesting this is because there already exists in all of our brains a system of substructuring of the nation in the form of states, and creating a new substructuring is confusing to many people. NC -- 1) If the Network is divided into fifty states, then the Network Coordinator would have to be in charge of fifty State Coordinators. Since all of us are volunteers, it would be extremely difficult and time consuming for the Network Coordinator to supervise fifty State Coordinators; whereas, with some help, supervising ten Regional Coordinators is manageable. 2) The population of California (30.38m) is 45 times than that of Delaware (0.68m). But if you add up the population of all regions, you will find out that the most populous region is less than twice as populous as the least populous region. Since Indians are scattered throughout the United States, it is fair to assume that all regions contain more or less the same number of Indians, or in other words they are equal in size. -------- MN -- I am quite uncomfortable with keeping records of people's statements. Sounds far too autocratic. NC -- In order to avoid problems that may arise in the future, we must keep all records for a certain period of time, perhaps for a couple of years. What we have been doing is completely legal, moral, and ethical. Therefore, there is nothing to worry about. ================================================================ P.S. If you have yet to respond to MN01 of "task10," please do so at your earliest convenience. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
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