What happens when you give a fire extinguisher to bunch of monkeys? They use it to kill other small animals. Though a fire extinguisher is designed to save lives, it can become dangerous if the user doesn't know how to use it. The same holds true with statistics. If the user doesn't know how to use them and when to use them, they can become lethal.
There are fools and then there are educated fools. I have not studied Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan of Lok Satta, but was happy to know that he has chosen to fight corruption. That's laudable. But in the context of Telangana, I chose to describe Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan as one such educated fool who doesn't know how and where to use these statistics. This is an excerpt from a chat with him:
There are some more facts. Literacy growth: Telangana : 1143% Rest of AP: 448%.
Some facts: Agricultural implents: Telengana-67% Rest of AP-33% Food grains-Rice growth(1955 to 2006): Telengana-708% Rest of AP-191%. Gross irrigation growth: Telengana-140% Rest of AP-38%.
Because the growth rate in Telangana was high he quickly concludes that Telangana is doing much better than rest of AP. Detractors of Telangana are using his observations to say that Telangana has never been discriminated - and in fact it developed more and better than rest of AP.
Here are three different countries with GDP growth rates for year 2007.
Country A: 11.1%
Country B: 5.9%
Country C: 2.0%
If you ask Jayaprakash of Lok Satta (JP) which country is doing the best, he and his followers will tell you that Country A is doing the best, followed by Country B, followed by Country C. If JP was asked which country is far ahead of others, he would say that Country A is far ahead of Country C by many counts. JP may even tell you that it is much better to live in Country A followed by Country B and the least desirable place would be Country C by all standards. So, what are these countries?