Sunday, 28 December 2008
Monday, 22 December 2008
This is an interesting piece - I've saved for posterity
One day a father and his rich family took his young son on a trip to the country with the firm purpose to show him how poor people can be.
One day a father and his rich family took his young son on a trip to the country with the firm purpose to show him how poor people can be.
They spent a day and a night in the farm of a very poor family.
They spent a day and a night in the farm of a very poor family.
When they got back from their trip the father asked his son, “How was the trip?”
"Very good, Dad!"
"Did you see how poor people can be?" The father asked. "Yeah!” "And what did you learn?"
The son answered, “I saw that we have a dog at home, and they have four. We have a pool that reaches to the middle of the garden, they have a creek that has no end. We have imported lamps in the garden, they have the stars. Our patio reaches to the front yard, they have a whole horizon.
When the little boy was finishing, his father was speechless.
His son added, “Thanks, Dad, for showing me how poor we are!”.
It all depends on the way you look at things?
You can have all the material possessions, but if you are poor of spirit, you have nothing!
Thursday, 18 December 2008
I would like to know from Journalist friends - If ever they would've felt proud doing that...! If they thought it was "A Brave act" - I'd say it was just a stupid act, and the fraternity should not empathise with him.
Reason or No Reason - It's truly in POOR TASTE...!
Monday, 15 December 2008
Scoring the winning run to reach 103 & take India to 387, an improbable victory over England in the 1st Test at M.A.Chidambaram, Chennai. December 15, 2008
FOR someone who has scored 12413* Runs in 155 Test with 41 Hundreds and 51 fifties, and 16422 Runs in 419 ODIs with 42 Centuries and 90 fifties… This may have been just another boundary…
( * Scores As on Date)
… For me it was that one blemish (as people always referred to it) that will be wiped out...!
YES! A century in the fourth innings of a Test that led India to VICTORY …!
Salute to the Maestro – The Legend
Thursday, 4 December 2008
I N V I C T U S
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.
- by William Ernest Henley.
Wednesday, 3 December 2008
There are street meetings, public rallies, candle light vigils, slogans - on television, in print, online, blogs, articles, posts on sites, text messages, emails - there seems to be no end to the public response that is one of the most non violent, but at the same time angry, protests ever seen in recent times in India.
If there was any thing close to this, was the Anti ‘Mandal Commission’ revolt of 1990s, which was targeted at the then PM VP Singh's policies - Ironically V.P. Singh passed away, amidst all the suspense that the nation was witnessing in Mumbai, with next-to-nothing coverage in the media.
The politicians for their part, of both the ruling Congress led UPA and the Opposition - the BJP and its allies in the NDA and the Communists have tried with varied consequences to reap mileage of the Mumbai Terror events.
Even as the politicians were facing scathing attack, for their lackadaisical approach to safeguarding the lives of the citizens and the non-responsiveness to intelligence alerts (if there were actually any), comes their foot-in-mouth comments that added insult to injury.
The issue whether India may or may not attack Pakistani Terror camps may be debated across the television studios, political board-rooms, diplomatic meetings and summits, with obvious political overtones and ramifications before any conclusive decision is taken.
The point that the people of India are trying to drive through the sustained peaceful outrage is – “We Want Permanent Peace”, the clichés are flying thick and fast – “Enough is enough”, “Quit India”, “Stop terrorism”, “Awakening India”, "We want actions not words" … the list is endless, but the sentiment is the same, we want :
A Peaceful India
Saturday, 29 November 2008
60 hours later and after the loss of over 200 lives, many questions have cropped up after the sustained terror attack on Mumbai. Some unanswered questions need to be answered.
How many terrorists were there? Who was responsible? How long have they been planning - months, weeks and days before the attacks? How could they have carried so much ammunition with them? How did they have such an intimate knowledge of the terrain? Were there locals? The terrorists are said to have done extensive reconnaissance of the city. If they are Pakistanis, how did they get earlier entry to the city unnoticed? How did they come in by boat? Or did they use other routes to escape notice?
These are just a few questions, these and more will have to be answered and addressed by the Government!
But one question that rankles me to no end is: Were there locals involved?
The terrorists seem to have had extensive training and preparation, possibly on models of the places of attack and on enduring a long drawn battle with the military forces – this gets me to have an emphatic YES as an answer to the question – Were there locals? For they could not have succeeded in the suicide mission with out local ground support.
But then Why? Why would locals get involved in killing innocent countrymen? Hunger? Unemployment? Lack of opportunity? Jingoistic strife?
It could be anything – what drives these youth to get involved. I tried deliberating and found no particular answer.
We are a nation of lawlessness; I am not referring just to the governments and politicians in power, but to every single citizen who takes ample pride in breaking the law.
In NO way I am being cynical about the state of affairs when I say “the administrators of this country have for ages have been breeding corruption in all walks of life.” The corruption has percolated deeply into the very roots of society that was once known to be the most simplistic and god fearing about a century ago (we continue to be god fearing – more for the CURE than as prevention). The levels of corruption wary with need and the need grows with every opportunity. There ceases to be no reason for the want to lessen.
As the initial fear of doing wrong subsides, the pattern turns an avocation, a habit that slowly gains in momentum and turns into an addiction. An addiction that brings with it fruits of long lasting pleasures. Thus is born a way of life – that which has its foundation laid on unlawfulness.
The Society is NOW in a ROTTEN state. A state of NO return, we are witness to corruption, from simple road rules to the complex laws, the loopholes are first studied and exploited. Here laws are THE exception. Responsibility towards the nation is unheard of, towards the self is waning, and towards the society comes with a price. A price laid down by the corrupt law-makers.
Almost every individual gets into the blame game, blame the civic authorities, the government, the employers, the society at large and the recklessness of life – the basic fact is, each one of us are equally to be blamed – for we have contributed our might to the growth of the current filth.
Self introspection is the key – No amount of debates and discussions, blaming the media, the politicians, the law, the law enforcement agencies, the booming population can bring solution to this rut.
As the search for the answers continue – more seemingly gullible youth will fall prey to easy money unaware of the consequences, and even if aware – fall prey to the luster that brings with it presumptive prosperity - This malady needs a permenant cure.
A silent prayer for the innocent victims and a Salute to the scores of policemen, commandos and the unsung firemen.
Thursday, 27 November 2008
"... We will take the strongest possible measures to ensure that there is no repetition of such terrorist acts. We are determined to take whatever measures are necessary to ensure the safety and security of our citizens...."
- Hon'ble Prime Minister of India Mr. Manmohan Singh
Hope the Prime Minister and the "Political" Administration keeps their promise to "take the strongest possible measures to ensure that there is no repetition of such terrorist acts" - For the people of this country are fast running out of patience and endurance.
Wednesday, 22 October 2008
However over the years, it’s become boring mainly due to being caged in the Air conditioned compartments that give very little view of the outside world, sans the fresh air and the noisy surroundings. Travel time is spent mostly with books or sleep in state-owned rugs or the odd chat with the co-passenger.
A last minute trip gave me an opportunity to relive the growing up days. Call it ill luck or providence I was left with no choice but travel by Sleeper Class or Second Class as we always knew it.
From the moment I boarded the train, I never regretted having this chance of going Second Class, I felt earthly sitting in the train amidst the cackle of the vendors and the chatter of co passengers.
My daughter was mighty pleased with the view from the window, the refreshing breeze that cut the rocking and the crackling of the train.
The trees seemed to be disciplined in their line formation and were passing at intermittent intervals. The greenery was all encompassing.
I reveled silently in the verdancy and felt at peace gazing out of the window continuously. It was the perfect way to unwind away from the hustle and bustle of living in a choked metropolis.
The tranquility was amazing and it was intermission time with nightfall.
I woke up to the first ray of sunlight cutting through the glass window and soon continued to relish the chill in the air.
Couple of hours after dawn we reached our destination and the world soon turned concrete.
I am yearning for more of this pleasure which had nothing “second class” stamped on it.
An experience that surely reflects my way of life – Down to earth Simple…!
Tuesday, 14 October 2008
Well, new to Chennai, it took me some days to get to know these places, then the people and their whims and fancies. I took a room - a single room accommodation - in what was touted as Bachelor's Paradise - Triplicane.
Apart from the weekend getaway to relatives' places in and around the far off Tambaram, my only other time pass was the beach, movies - mostly Tamil, the only Hindi movies I saw in Chennai then was Aashiqui & Naam, and the endless discovery of the lanes and by lanes of Chennai on foot.
18 years later: October 2008:
I am back in Chennai, for a holiday with my family. On a Sunday morning I take my cousin's bike on a drive through the lanes and by lanes of Triplicane, my room in Lal Begum street (incidentally I was one of the 1st residents of the then newly opened Mansion - see pic), the shop in Big street, the breakfast hotel on Pycrofts road, the lunch mess on Triplicane high road, the dinner joint (a small dhaba kind) on Bells road and of course to the home of a very old friend on Meeyan Sahib street. A really nostalgic trip down memory lane...!
Time flies, infrastructure develops, technology takes over, people grey...
Monday, 13 October 2008
Tuesday, 16 September 2008
As per the revised rules, smoking is banned in shopping malls, cinema halls, public/private work place, hotels, banquet halls, discotheques, canteen, coffee house, pubs, bars, bus stands, airport lounge, railway stations",
According to the newly notified rules, owners, proprietors, managers, supervisors or officers in-charge of public places have to ensure that “no ashtrays, matches, lighters or other things designed to facilitate smoking are provided in public places”. In case they fail to implement the ban, the authorised officer shall be liable to pay fines equivalent to the number of individual offences that take place in areas under his or her jurisdiction.
Those caught smoking in these "public places" will be fined Rs 200 and the amount is likely to be increased to Rs 1,000 in the future. Organisations, which allow employees to smoke within their building premises, will in turn have to pay Rs 5,000 per employee caught smoking.
Smokers' only refuge would be the road or parks. Now why this exemption - As if these places aren't all that polluted already?
Like a wag said: "Cigarette peene walon ko toh Road par la diya"
If Draconian refers to the laws created by Draco, an Athenian law scribe under whom small offenses had heavy punishments! Then is this Ramadoss-ian?
I would love to see this law implemented in full just like the many successful Road Rules (helmets, seatbelts, Drunken driving, juvenile driving, lane discipline etc etc) / Anti Corruption Laws / law barring candidates with criminal records from contesting elections / The Dowry act / Child Labour / ... well the list may be endless and a few hundreds more of such that have been implemented strictly first by the law makers before passing it on to the common man.
I am trying NOT to be cynical or indifferent...!
I said.... I am........ Trying...!!!
Monday, 15 September 2008
Among his other (in) famous claim to fame is the famous quote on how if political parties are demanding the hanging of Afzal Guru for his conviction in the December 13, 2001 Parliament attack case then India would lose the right to ask Pakistan to pardon Sarabjit Singh.
Even as the Union Railway Minister stops short of asking for Patil's head and then does a U-turn in saying "Patil's resignation no solution to terror", we are left wondering why this unique poverty of political acumen in this nation...?
In the first place how did the learned Prime Minister INSULT the people's verdict by installing some one who was rejected by the popular vote as the country's Home Minister.
Was he not the one who was rejected by the majority in his "home" town Latur in 2004 and subsequently after being sworn in as Union Minister filed his nomination papers for the Rajya Sabha to legitimate his appointment?
What else do you expect from the rulers of this country who are Losers in the first place and who are mute spectators in safeguarding the Nation.
Well said Lalu: "Patil's resignation no solution to terror" - For another joker will take his place and the 'Gandhi sycophants' will sings paeans to the "secular" ideology of the new recruit and his loyalty to the family...!
As you and me are left wondering - Why DO we need to Vote? For Change?
- To Hell with Change...! Who Cares two hoots...!
Tuesday, 26 August 2008
For some one who has been a fan of the filmstar - the Mega entry into politics - at least the entry - is nothing short of "Impressive".
Wait I am not saying I am to shift allegiance so soon
Well I would wait and watch to say more - for in true filmy style "Picture ab hi toh shuru huyi hai"
Tuesday, 19 August 2008
SRINAGAR AUGUST 15, 2008: At exactly 8am, CRPF hoisted the Indian Tricolour at Lal Chowk in the heart of Srinagar on Independence Day. At 3.45pm, Lal Chowk wore a totally different look. Hundreds of slogan-shouting protesters swarmed the area and at 4pm and planted the flags of Jamaat-e-Islami (which looks like the Pakistani flag) and the terrorist outfit, Hizb-ul Mujahideen, on top of the same tower where the Indian flag had been hoisted.
Saturday, 16 August 2008
My religious views have been very unexpressive, but then I stop short of sounding like a ‘rightist’ when I express. I hate the pseudo secular power hungry 100+ year old political party, which thrives on the poor, the illiterate voters and the born sycophants who eulogize the dumbest of their leaders to no end.
But then when reams and reams of newsprint and hours and days of news bytes go into talking for and against the citizen of this country – very clearly differentiated on religious lines, I have no reason not to express my own views on this. Firstly I don’t hate the minorities, I hate their appeasement – I hate the way they are treated as vote bank. No I am not trying to be politically correct in saying this… for I believe in the simple truth of life – Equality.
If that is so, then why do you have an Amarnath issue that needs hours and days of political debate, but no one was consulted when Haj subsidies were implemented (so I believe… was there a discussion?) What M.F Hussain does is Art and what Modi’s men speak is ‘fanatical’, NO – I don’t subscribe to the Modi way of life and thought, but aren’t these Congressmen to be blamed for the backlash, where a majority is made to look like slaves and the minority – which incidentally is basking in all the attention showered and is greedily expecting more!
I may sound ill informed, true to a large extent, but why is Kashmir always the bone of contention, what have the two countries each holding on to a share of the ‘Kashmir’ doing to make it really worth owning. What have the successive Indian governments over the past 6 decades done to alleviate the living conditions of the people of this region?
Questions that have answers – but then who want answers – as long as there are minorities – as long as they are illiterate – poverty stricken – appeased and pampered – there will be power mongers who will fill their coffers.
Kashmir and minorities are a creation of “the mother (and also the grandfather, son, daughter-in-law) of all political parties” and their personalized policies!
So for now the flavour of the season is Kashmir – that we will hear hogging the headlines and ‘Breaking News’ for long – tomorrow, and when it comes there will be another.
Its Elections time soon – Lets NOT expect anything to change!
It has not been intentional to sound cynical, but then for someone who believes to be a patriot in the true sense, for someone who feels being a responsible citizen is just a basic requirement, it is hard to digest the hypocrisy of the arm chair preachers who day-in-and-day-out thrive on passing judgement on the dos and don’ts in society and at other times don’t bat an eyelid to do break every possible rule, written and unwritten, ethical and unethical.
Enough of berating the hypocrites, who have governed our lives, lets give a saner thought to freedom. Freedom in the dictionary sense is “The condition of being free; the power to act or speak or think without externally imposed restraints”. Well aren’t we getting too prejudiced with the people who think for us, speak for us and also make us think and speak their language? Where has our inner sense of creativity and analytical sense gone? Can we not make our own opinion and stick to it?
This Independence Day, let’s solemnly pledge to “FREE OUR MINDS” of prejudice, contempt, lack of sensitivity towards the surroundings, towards fellow human beings and towards anything that does not belong to ‘us’. Let’s “SPEAK OUR HEARTS” rationally.
Inculcate the habit of being humane; imbibe virtue as a prerequisite to live - like the air we breathe, the water we drink or the food we eat.
Let Freedom be…! In the actual sense – not just a day to remember on I Day, but a cherished luxury that can be made memorable every day in our lives.
Tuesday, 12 August 2008
A Country of 100 million needed more, but then It had to begin, the jinx needed to be broken, an individual medal was something that happened in the last 3 Games (Paes, Malleswari, Rathore), but the elusive Gold finally arrived bringing cheer to this sports starved (save cricket) nation.
Kudos Abhinav Bindra – You’ve really made us proud… A small step for Bindra – A giant leap for India – sounds clichéd?
For a Nation that breeds cynics by the second, thanks to the 24 hour news channels, such moments are to be really cherished with unabashed enthusiasm.
For a true blue sports aficionado, this is truly the defining moment – The Golden Moment of Life…!
This new avatar has a conspicuous Z in my world. The Z has for long been in existence in my works albeit in a very subtle coded way.
As I begin this new innings of penning my thoughts I promise (to myself) to explore a wider range of subjects, an exploration of the various interests that govern me and my world, of course with the renewed promise of originality.
The passion for sport though cannot be forbearing; the pursuit will surely cross the realm of politics, music, world affairs, environment and more…!
Cheerz to the new beginning!!!
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