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Rajiya Ra Duha: Couplets of Kriparam Charan

Among a wonderful piece of pre-modern Rajasthani poetry is the couplets, written in Soratha chhand, by poet Kriparam Barahath, aka Kriparam Charan. Kriparamji’s poetry is renowned as Rajiya ra duha, as all of his couplets are addressed to his Man Friday, who possibly had the name Rajkumar, pejoratively called Rajiya. These couplets would have been written approx. year 1800 CE or thereabout. It is possible to get some 130 of these couplets [see here – https://www.charans.org/kraparambarhat/]

Kriparam’s poetry contains crisp sayings, in extremely subtle and deeply touching Rajasthani language. The best part of the poetry is that the language is not very different from present-day colloquial Rajasthani language, and therefore, one may easily use these couplets as sayings.

Kriparamji makes excellent use of Vayansagai or Bayansagai, a very famous alliteration style used in Dingal poetry. In Vayansagai, the first and last word of every part  of the couplet start with the same sound, thereby creating intensive impact in recitation. Additionally, each of the Rajiya couplets end with the word Rajiya – being addressed to the Man Friday.

The poet, therefore, worked under tremendous limitations. Since the last word of each couplet had to be Rajiya, the first word of the last part had to start with sound R, leaving him with limited word combinations. Within this constraint, Kriparam still makes perfect carnation of words and conveys crisply what he wants to convey.

I have translated some selected couplets of Rajiya ra Duha – in no particular order.

 

मूसा नै मंजार, हित कर बैठा हेकठा।

सह जाणै संसार, रह्यो न रह्सी राजिया।

The cat and the mouse are sitting together, as if affectionately. The whole world knows that this has never been so, nor will ever be.

 

मतलब री मनवार, नूँत जिमावै चूरमा।

बिन मतलब मनवार, राब न पावै राजिया।

So much of warm hospitality that one is being invited and served Choorma. This is all for purpose. Once purpose is served, they will not even serve raab. [Choorma is a sort of homemade delicacy. Raab is layman’s food made of flour soaked in curd. ]

 

सुधहीणा सिरदार, मतहीणा राखे  मिनख।

अस आंघौ असवार, रांम रुखाळौ राजिया।

Senseless leaders engage brainless servants. The horse is blind. So is the horse rider. Only god save them!

 

पाटा पीड उपाव, तन लागां तरवारियां।

घले जीभ रा घाव, रती न ओखद राजिया।

If the body is hurt by swords, bandage and medication may help ease the pain. However when it tongue (spoken words) that inflict injury, there is not even a molecule of medication.

 

ऊँचे गिरवर आग, जलती सह देखै जगत।

पर जलती निज पाग, रती न दिसै राजिया।

Everyone sees the fire burning on the high hill.  However the one burning at one’s own feet – no one seems to see that.

 

हियै मूढ़ जो होय. की संगत ज्यांरी करै।

काला ऊपर कोय, रंग न लागै राजिया।

मलियागिर मंझार, हर को तर चन्दण हुवै।

संगत लियै सुधार, रूंखाँ ही नै राजिया।

These two couplets demonstrate the impact of company- working in one case and not working in the other:

If one is absolutely stupid, how can company help? No other colour can be mixes with black.

On the hills of Malayagiri, every tree is that of sandal. See, company can impact even trees.

 

भाड़ जोख झक भेक, वारज में भेळा वसै।

इसकी भंवरो एक, रस की जांणे राजिया।

The frog, leech and fish – all stay in the same pond. However it only the amour black bee (bhramar, bhanwara) who knows the love of lotus.

 

कारण कटक न कीध, सखरा चाहिजई सुपह।

लंक विकट गढ़ लीध, रींछ बांदरा राजिया।

It is the able leader that matters, not the strength of the army.  See, Ram conquered Lanka with an army of moneys and bears.

 

रोटी चरखो राम, इतरौ मुतलब आपरौ।

की डोकरियां कांम, राजकथा सूं राजिया।

Their concern is limited to food, spinning wheel and the name of god. What do old ladies have to do with talk of the king or politics. (That is, keep your concerns limited to what matters for you.)

 

गुणी सपत सुर गाय, कियौ किसब मूरख कनै।

जांणै रुनौ जाय, रणरोही में राजिया।

The deft singer sang seven Sur’s (Swars of music); you showed artful skills in front of a fool. It is lying crying in wilderness.

 

उपजावे अनुराग, कोयल मन हरकत करै।

कड़वो लागे काग, रसना रा गुण राजिया।

They look similar- the crow and the cuckoo. However cuckoo begets happiness in mind, and crow disdain. All attributes of the tongue (speech).

 

एक जतन सत एह, कूकर कुगंध कुमांणसां।

छेड़ न लीजे छेह, रैवण दीजे राजिया।

These three have same nature: stray dogs, bad odorous substance, and a bad person. It is best that you don’t disturb them. Let them be.

 

पहली कियां उपाव, दव दुस्मण आमय दटे।

प्रचंड हुआ विस वाव, रोभा घालै राजिया।

These five things – fire, enemy, disease, poison and wind – the best is to to take preventive measures beforehand. Once they become strong (after occurrence) they cause lot of pain.

 

दुष्ट सहज समुदाय, गुण छोडे अवगुण गहै।

जोख चढी कुच जाय, रातौ पीवै राजिया।

Evil people, due to their instinctive features, leave out virtues for vices. The leech climbs on breasts and sucks blood instead of milk.

 

बंध बंध्या छुडवाय, कारज मनचिंत्या करै।

कहौ चीज है काय, रुपियो सरखी राजिया।९०।

It releases from shackles; attains whatever one wishes. Tell me what can match the might of money?

 

आछा है उमराव, हियाफ़ूट ठाकुर हुवै।

जड़िया लोह जड़ाव, रतन न फ़ाबै राजिया।१०८।

The king is good enough, but has employed senseless ministers/subordinates. It almost like precious stones studded in iron.

 

काळी घणी करुप, कस्तूरी काँटाँ तुले

शक्कर घणी सरूप, रोड़ां तुलिये राजिया

Kasturi (deer’s musk) is black in colour and ugly in looks. Yet it is weighted on small measuring scale (used for gold/precious materials). Shakkar (ground form of jagery) is offwhite, looks beautiful. Yet it is weighted with stones (before standard measuring scales came, stones were commonly used for weighting heavy things). In essence, what matters is merits, and not looks.

Board interlock restrictions apply to existing IDs too

SEBI clarifies in recent informal guidance

Sundaram Finance (applicant company) on 28th August, 2018 requested SEBI to issue informal guidance for getting clarity/better understanding of the wording use in new Regulation 17 (1A) and Regulation 25 (1) both of which use the word “continue” which is absent in Reg.16(1)(b)(viii).

The below note give’s a summary  with regard to Informal Guidance issued by SEBI dated 15th October, 2018 which gives a better understanding/clarity with respect to the above regulations.

Discussion under Kotak Committee report[1]

Independent director function as an oversight body in monitoring the performance of the company and should raise red flags whenever suspicious occurs, and one of the  most  important elements being “independence”, the Kotak Committee felt that the evaluation of “independence” of an Independent director should  entail  both  objective  and  subjective  assessments  and  such  assessments  should  be  both continuing and genuine.

Another  trend  that  was  brought  to  the  attention  of  the  Committee  and  found  to  be  undesirable from a good governance standpoint, is “board interlocks” which may run a structural vulnerability of quid-pro-quo (a favor or advantage granted in return for something) which may harm the independence of an independent director.

Board interlocks can be good or bad depends on case-to-case basis. Some can use it in ethical manner and can be useful to bring business to companies and some might use them in a wrongly manner/misuse the power for their personal benefit and can cause harm to long-term interest of the company.

Requirement under SEBI (Listing Obligation and Disclosure Requirements), 2015[2]

SEBI has provided clarity in regards to the informal guidance issued to Sundaram Finance Private Limited based on three regulation provided under SEBI (Listing Obligation and Disclosure Requirement), 2015:

Regulation 16 (1)(b)(viii):

“Independent director means a non-executive director, other than a nominee director of the listed entity:

Who is not a non-independent director of another company on the board of which any non-independent director of the listed entity is an independent director.”

Regulation 17 (1A):

“No listed entity shall appoint a person or continue the directorship of any person as a non-executive director who has attained the age of seventy five years unless a special resolution is passed to that effect, in which case the explanatory statement annexed to the notice for such motion shall indicate the justification for appointing such a person.”

Regulation 25 (1):

“No person shall be appointed or continue as an alternate director for an independent director of a listed entity.”

Interpretation of Sundaram[3]

Sundaram Finance Limited requested for informal guidance to be issued for their clarity in regards to Regulation 16 (1)(b)(viii), Regulation 25 (1), Regulation 17 (1A) which are as follow:

  1. There were 12 directors on the board of the listed company, out of which 6 were independent directors. One of the independent directors is non-independent director on the board of another company. One of the directors of other company who is non-executive director is an independent director on the board of Sundaram Finance Limited.
  2. Regulation 16(1)(b)(viii) introduced with effect from 1st October 2018 does not apply to existing independent directors, whose term will expire as per the tenor approved by the shareholders. In the company’s view, the stance is further strengthened by the wordings of Regulation 17(1A) and Regulation 25(1) which use the word, “continue”, which is absent in Regulation 16(1)(b)(viii). Therefore, this provision should apply to directors to be appointed or re-appointed as independent directors only.

SEBI’s informal guidance for the same[4]

Regulation 16(1)(b)(viii) of the SEBI LODR Regulation (inserted by the SEBI Listing Obligations and Disclosure Requirements  Amendment ) Regulations, 2018 were notified on 9th May, 2018. The said amendment has come into effect from October 01, 2018. Hence all listed companies were given time till October 1, 2018 to comply with the said clause (viii) of Regulation 16(1)(b) of said amended regulations. The said regulations shall apply to both to existing directors and to new appointment/ re-appointment of directors with effect from October 1, 2018.

Analysis and conclusion

The rationale behind the above is that the independent directors is a critical instrument for ensuring good corporate governance and it is necessary that the functioning of the institution is critically analyzed and proper safeguards are made to ensure efficacy.

These types of interlocks have garnered significant regulatory and academic attention because they raise concerns about whether a director charged with overseeing an executive who is, in a different context, acting as one of his own directors, can be truly independent.

This will help in maintaining the “independence” of independent directors and will safeguard the interest of the company in long run.

 

[1]https://www.sebi.gov.in/reports/reports/oct-2017/report-of-the-committee-on-corporate-governance_36177.html

[2]https://www.sebi.gov.in/sebi_data/attachdocs/1441284401427.pdf

[3] https://www.sebi.gov.in/sebi_data/commondocs/oct-2018/sundaraminfgui_p.pdf

[4]https://www.sebi.gov.in/sebi_data/commondocs/oct-2018/sebisundaraminformal_p.pdf