The 2011 is here. And i believe its going to be a very interesting year as it is promising to be in all aspects of the society. In february we are going to have the cricket world cup jointly hosted by India, Sri lanka and Bangladesh. It is most likely Sachin Tendulkar's last ODI world cup. Can he win it for India. The long innings of Sachin as a best batsman the world has seen, and the records he created, most of them unimaginable till recently really deserves one. Australia had a good decade and looks it may not be able to repeat its performance this time. A lot depends on Ponting, if they have to pull it off one more time. As a Indian, i want India to win the world cup, and at the same time want the best team to win. Lets see how this works out. South Africa and England have been good recently, and they can pull it off. Can they pull it off in sub-continent pitches, is the dilemma. Sri Lanka has its young guns firing in Mathews, Pereira, Malinga. Can they repeat the 1996 experience? Who will be the Sanath this time ? Lets see. Bottom line, It is going to be competetive cricket. A good tournament is on the cards. The security in India is going to come under focus again. There could be possible scare tactics in the build up to the biggie, especially since Pakistan is left out as a host which is very unfortunate. It has to be seen, how the Indian government is going to deal with it. Everything looked fine, until the recent Varanasi bombing, which killed a child, and left dozens injured. There home ministry has to really have it under control. It is going to be a an uphil task for the security establishment. Any incident that is significant, can force countries like England, Australia and New Zealand to re-consider venues. They were already succesful in eliminating Pakistan venues from the tournament citing security reasons. The shooting incident against the visiting Sri lankan team was the final nail in the coffin for international matches in Pakistan soil. It is going to be years, before cricket matches return to its venues. Pakistan has had a bad year on and off the field too, with most people seeing their cricketers corrupt and with attitude issues. Its high time, they come in with a bang, and lets see their reverse swings and the fighting script when the coutry is not in best times.
Congress government has a string of state elections due. What in West Bengal. Can Buddha come up with a miracle, given the fact its trusted leftinent Jyoti Baasu is no more to help them out. It will be the first election without Baasu around in its 30+ year of successful election victories. Will the People of Bengal trust Mamtha Banerjee. Can left extend its record. I wont be surprised, if the Left manages to pull it off 'one more time' particulary if it could divide its opposition. Remember they told, the left is in bad shape in the 2006 assembly elections., but it managed a confortable win. The other question for Congress(I in Tamil nadu, what is going to happen with its alliance in DMK, which is going to have a tough election ahead. Will the congress stay with it? Will the freebies work? After the 2G spectrum scandal, DMK is viewed more corrupt. Can it do a image make over before May elections? Will the congress go with Jayalalitha this time around. Remember the famous "tea party" that Atalji and Advanji will never forget. Now that Sonia Gandhi's Italian origin is no longer an issue, things could change very fast than you think. Any alliance can happen. Current trends indicate, most likely the DMK will be voted out of power particulary because of ultra-inflation. The Congress is most likely to under perform until it get the price rise of essential commodities under control. The PM Manmohan Singh has told, the Government will go the extra mile to recede inflation. Lets see what happens. The interest rates are going to go up atleast two basis point in 2011. The supply side has to be taken care as well., now that we had a good monsoon.
Out of everything else, the world economy is probably one thing that stands out in 2011 expections list. Everyone has a opinion on them. In my opinion, it is going to be a very very interesting year. European union is being tested. The countries that came together under one banner in currency and trade, looks to be degrading because of political independancy of member nations. Can they stand to gether? The biggest challenge is what happens if Portugal and Spain look out for a bail-out from EU? This is a OMG moment for European union. Can the Austerity measures in Britain reap gains over time. Will its people accept those measure. We already have seen student protest getting out of hand in London. Is it going to spread to other demonstrations in the EU member nations. We are definetely going to see this evolve through out this year. Will the Chinese step into helping EU with its debit problems. If so, who is going to buy US debts? China can use this oppurtunity to diverse its investment away from US treasury bills. Is it a good investment for China in the long run, probably yes. The Markets around the world managed to reap some gain in 2010. According to suveys conducted by renowned journalist, it is going to be better year than 2011. But the Alarmist think the other way. The value of gold has gone up 27%. Where is it headed ? If the Alarmist are right, they it could make 30% more this year on gold. The value of oil is going to be interesting, as China and India grow rapidly in spite of Western economies boosting price. If the western economies dont come out of slow down, it is going to be hard on people. A $148/Barrel crude is payable during good times, but is terribly bad at the time of a down turn. The US economy has come out of coma, but still with 9.8% unemployment is nowhere near the normal. The way he is being playing this season, Tom Brady can win the Super Bowl, one more time for the Patriots.. atleast looks like, but Americans have something more to worry this year, that is how does the economy play. It is going to be closely watched, by markets around the world. Can it make a come back this year ? Will the QE2 be complete, most likely yes. Will there be QE3 in 2011, most likely yes. There are monetary benefits for the FED to do more QEs.
Wikileaks had made a significant mark on news reporting this last year. The publishment of leaked cables, has provided a new platform for news-savy people, who think they discover and expose new materials, that are not published by huge corporate medias. Wikileaks is probably going to come up with more articles of such sorts, and is capable of "displacing" world opinion on not only leaders and beaurocrats but also the people. what comes out of wikileaks is probably going to be more relevant here after than anytime before. The freezing of its funds, its founder Julian Assange's arrest and alienation is going to slow down Wikileaks, but whether the pressure can be sustained remains to be seen. All wikileaks would aspire for is 2-3 significant exposures in the year to have it credibility going.
One of my good friend, asked me, what would you like to happen this new year that is going to make me happy.... As a Indian, and cricket lover, no wonder i told him, an India win in world cup final 2011, at least for Sachin sake.