[Wikimediaindia-l] Communication from the Executive Committee regarding first meeting

CherianTinu Abraham tinucherian at gmail.com
Sun Feb 6 19:21:26 UTC 2011

My concerns were primarily towards the lack of clarity,  transparency and
communications ( already shared by several others in this mailing list) from
the part of the chapter.

The previous set of office bearers were mentioned as early as April 2010 in
the chapter Memorandum of Association

In Jun 2010, the Foundation approved the chapter.
In Jan 2011, the chapter is registered as legal entity. Days after
its announcement, the executive committee ( I would call it secretly, unless
it had publicly announced on the agenda) decides to keep passing the chairs
among them.

Almost a week after this meeting, there were strongly discussions on the
lack of transparency on the chapter actions, I wonder why such an important
change was not disclosed to us, then.

It may be argued that chapter MoA empowers the EC for "rotation" of the
positions, please remember this committee is a technically a transitional
committee till the chapter opens up the membership of the community , which
it represents ( if at all) . We must not forget that the current executive
team as founding members merely represented ( for legal purposes) the wider
Wikimedia India community to form an organisation , It is not an NGO started
by few philanthropists. I am not undermining and being unappreciative of the
efforts of several of the exec com members in setting up the chapter through
a really painful legal process, though.

But if I may ask , doesn't the committee and the chapter have
any accountability to the community, considering that the current team is
not a democratically elected committee as mandated by the MoA?

Come on, the committee has better things to do than keep rotating the
chairs.. In spite of several requests earlier by the community, a
proper transparency of actions from the chapter is still a distant dream.

Tinu Cherian

On Mon, Feb 7, 2011 at 12:11 AM, Theo10011 <de10011 at gmail.com> wrote:

> Ahh, wasn't the chapter registered less than a month ago Tinu? I don't know
> more than half the people from the chapter but I think you're being
> awfully presumptuous in claiming that "the executive members keep electing
> each other". I thought this was the founding group, the registered entity
> has been around for less than a month, right or did I miss something?
> Regards
> Salmaan
> User:Theo10011
> On Mon, Feb 7, 2011 at 12:04 AM, jayanta nath <jayantanth at gmail.com>wrote:
>>  *  7 executive members keep electing each other, each time !!!! *
>> Nice observation from Tinu..... My observation and  comment is same as
>> below.
>> On Sun, Feb 6, 2011 at 11:43 PM, CherianTinu Abraham <
>> tinucherian at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Hearty congratulations to Arjuna Rao , Hari Prasad & Anirudh Bhati as the
>>> new office bearers of the Wikimedia India chapter. Well deserved & best
>>> wishes for the future.
>>> Having said that, this unexpected announcement leaves me with
>>> several unanswered questions. This has to do nothing with any doubts on
>>> the calibre , integrity & abilities of new office bearers or the rest of the
>>> committee members. I still personally share a very close & cordial relations
>>> with all of the exec comn members, but that doesn't prevent me from asking
>>> lots of questions and concerns as an ordinary Wikimedian like me and it may
>>> be possibly shared by several others in this list.
>>> a) If there was to be a change of the office bearers of the chapter (
>>> decided) on the Jan 22 Exec Comm meeting, why wasn't it announced publicly?
>>> Was there an agenda of election of new office bearers for this meeting or
>>> just happened as a co-incidence ? What were the other decisions taken on
>>> that meeting ? Is there a publicly available minutes of meeting ?
>>> b) How were the new office bearers elected ? Was there an election ? Did
>>> the previous office bearers voluntarily resign and called for a new
>>> election? Was there a vote ? If there was a vote, will it be publicly
>>> shared? What was the need of change of office bearers within few months of
>>> chapter approval or one month of chapter registration ? I thought the term
>>> of the executive committee members and the office bearers was for two years.
>>>  I am sorry but I have to say this , IMHO it is not an ethical
>>> and transparent process if the 7 executive members keep electing each other,
>>> each time !!!!
>>> c) There were several discussions on this mailing list on the chapter on
>>> Jan 30 th , 2011 [1] [2] ( after the so called meeting) and had mentions of
>>> the current office bearers and none of the executive com members even
>>> bothered to clarify. I remember at least two of the exec members replying to
>>> those threads then.
>>> d) So the new office bearers' elections happened on Jan 22 , 2011 ? And I
>>> wonder what took the chapter several weeks to announce , such a important
>>> change publicly ? Remember this "new election" happened even without a
>>> publicly announced agenda, before the meeting. How many such elections can
>>> we expect during the current term of the committee?
>>> We already had lots of concerns shared by the community for the lack
>>> of transparency by the chapter and these kinds of things will only underline
>>> them.
>>> If this is the way the chapter intends to operate, I am deeply concerned
>>> and worried about its future.
>>> Regards
>>> Tinu Cherian
>>> N.B.
>>> a) To clarify, I don't intend to run for any office positions for the
>>> chapter. But I may have to even think twice to be part of a body which
>>> clearly intends to work without any proper transparency and works
>>> disconnected from the community, which it supposedly represents.
>>> b) I have always supported the chapter previously in the several
>>> discussions earlier, but this announcement put me really worried and hence
>>> this mail. Anyways, my best wishes again for the new office bearers and the
>>> chapter. Hoping the see more transparent and candid efforts from the chapter
>>> in future.
>>> [1]
>>> http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimediaindia-l/2011-January/001891.html
>>> [2]
>>> http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimediaindia-l/2011-February/001935.html
>>> On Sun, Feb 6, 2011 at 7:23 PM, BalaSundaraRaman <sundarbecse at yahoo.com>wrote:
>>>> Dear all,
>>>> Following the registration of the Wikimedia Chapter, the first meeting
>>>> of the Executive Committee (EC) was held on the 22nd January 2011 at 2 PM at
>>>> 194, 2nd C Cross, Domlur 2nd Phase, Bangalore 560071.
>>>> As mandated by the MoA, the office bearers were elected. The executive
>>>> committee now constitutes of:
>>>>    - Arjuna Rao Chavala, *President*
>>>>    - Hari Prasad HS, *Secretary*
>>>>    - Anirudh Singh Bhati, *Treasurer*
>>>>    - Arun Ramarathnam, Member
>>>>    - BalaSundaraRaman Lakshmanan, Member
>>>>    - Gautam K John, Member
>>>>    - Srinivas Gunta, Member
>>>> We would like to take the opportunity to thank the Centre for Internet
>>>> and Society, Bangalore for allowing generous use of their office facility
>>>> for the conduct of chapter meetings and helping with registration
>>>> formalities with services of a Consultant.
>>>> We take this opportunity to thank the following people: (in alphabetical
>>>> order) Achal Prabhala, Barry Newstead, Bence Damokos, Bishakha Datta,
>>>> Delphine Meynard, M Narasimha Rao, Ray Saintonge, Sunil Abraham, and Ting
>>>> Chen.
>>>> We thank the Wikimedia Community for their help and encouragement and
>>>> patience with the registration process.
>>>> For brief biographies and photos of the EC members, please see:Wikimedia
>>>> India Chapter Executive Committee Members<http://wikimedia.in/wiki/Wikimedia_India_Chapter_Executive_Committee_Members>
>>>> On behalf of Wikimedia Chapter
>>>> BalaSundaraRaman Lakshmanan,
>>>> Member, Wikimedia Chapter
>>>> "That language is an instrument of human reason, and not merely a medium
>>>> for the expression of thought, is a truth generally admitted."
>>>> - George Boole, quoted in Iverson's Turing Award Lecture
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>> --
>> With Warm Regards,
>> *Jayanta Nath*
>> Calcutta,West Bengal
>> +91 9836294438
>> Facebook :http://www.facebook.com/jayantanth
>> Wikipedia :http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Jayantanth
>> আসুন পাইরেসি মুক্ত ভারত  গড়ি,সবাই মুক্ত সফ্‌টওয়ার ব্যবহার করি [image:
>> O:-)],অন্যকে ব্যবহারে উৎসাহিত করি।
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