Tag Archives: India

Life is What You Make It- Preeti Shenoy

Author: Preeti Shenoy
Publisher: Srishti Publishers
Price: 100/-

Life Is What You Make It (LIWYMI) is the latest book by Preeti Shenoy, and I was more than looking forward to it; not only because her last book was a bestseller but also because this was the first time she was moving away from (my perception of) her comfort zone. I have been following her blog since long and her last book was non-fiction 500 word blog-post like articles. So when her new book, LIWYMI was a piece of fiction I desperately wanted to read it and with Blogadda sending the book to me, all I had to do was sit on the couch and read it.

The book is a story of a girl named Ankita, and her life battling with conservative parents, multiple guys who fell in love with her, shifting her entire life from Cochin to Mumbai and on top of it an unknown ailment which was driving her life crazy. The story starts with Ankita’s first step in the adult life starting in the college. The story swiftly moves into her first experience with the love in a long distance relationship and a second with another guy she meets during her college. Her life changes when she gets through her MBA and her entire family shifts to Mumbai, where she attains the high point of her entire life and becomes a super achiever like nobody could keep her spirits down.

This is where the story changes track from the usual college tales, the protagonist, Ankita, gets in the grip of one of the most complicated and unheard of mental condition leading her to quit her visions of a great future and a successful corporate life. The book proceeds to become a tale of struggle to reclaim oneself, a tale of courage while fighting an unknown within, a tale of a survivor. The story keeps you engaged throughout the book while beautifully portraying multiple shades of the personality of a protagonist.

LIWYMI is an easy and pleasant read but what makes it outstanding is the message and intent behind the story which has more depth then usual college tale. The idea of spreading the awareness about a mental/psychological illness and the process of how it is cured makes this book great in real sense. Characterization and narratives are very real and are the strongest point of the book, the reader can relate so well with Ankita and her plight that one feels they the character is known to them since ages. The pace of the book is uneven, where first half of the book is a bit slow and goes in great detail while her time in Mumbai and the period of her illness are pretty fast paces, which keeps it interesting but on the same time leaves the readers with some unanswered questions around the condition and the character.

Overall LIWYMI is a fresh tale with substance, from an Indian Author, without losing the charm of the story. The book ends on a positive note giving a message or optimism and hope in most difficult of circumstances. The book leaves you with a sense of empathy and concern for people suffering from various psychological disorders and makes you aware of the plight a patient of such condition might face.

Summary: A nice realistic tale with substance around psychological ailments. A light but still substantial read. Every bit worthy of the time the reader would spend reading. A must read for people who prefer realistic tales of courage and internal struggle told through fiction.

Rating:  4 / 5

This review is a part of the Book Reviews Program at BlogAdda.com. Participate now to get free books!

MF Hussain And Freedom of Self Expression

So this renounced artist MF Hussain, who was a citizen of Qatar when he died yesterday. Though my heart prays for his soul to RIP, but I have never been a fan of him or supported him. To set a brief context, he is an Indian who supposedly had to leave India to escape from arrest which was due to some court cases against him. There was a lot of agitation and legal retaliation against him because he painted Hindu goddesses in nude and sexual manner.

This had time and again in our country created debates on freedom of expression. So before I discuss my views on freedom of speech and expression, I would also like to quote where legality stands on this particular issue does. So this is what our constitution says about Freedom of Speech & Expression-

 

(1) All citizens shall have the right—

(a) to freedom of speech and expression;

(b) to assemble peaceably and without arms;

(c) to form associations or unions;

(d) to move freely throughout the territory of India;

(e) to reside and settle in any part of the territory of India; and

(g) to practise any profession, or to carry on any occupation, trade or business.

(2) Nothing in sub-clause (a) of clause (1) shall affect the operation of any existing law, or prevent the State from making any law, in so far as such law imposes reasonable restrictions on the exercise of the right conferred by the said sub-clause in the interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States, public order, decency or morality, or in relation to contempt of court, defamation or incitement to an offence.

So coming back to my point I respect our forefathers to include the freedom of speech and expression in our constitution; but my respect trebles on their foresight when I read the clause 2. Now coming back to case of MF Hussain, I see these areas where I think whatever happened to him weren’t totally unjustified.

 

Firstly if he painted some goddesses in a naked and sexual way his freedom of speech and expression was clearly shaky on the grounds of morality, decency and may be secularity too. When there were cases against him, he left the country, if one is convinced that whatever his expression was it was not indecent, immoral or affected the secularity of the state then he always had the option to fight the legal way out running out of the country is not an answer.

Secondly, he chose Qatar as the place where he would belong after separating from India; did he try and attempt to do an illustration which might have been a bit controversial for the people of Qatar. I am sure that would not be the case but instead he worked on the project under the ruling family glorifying the Arab history. Not that I have a problem with that but then my problem lies with the fact that between India & Qatar there is a drastic change in his idea of creative expression through art.

Now, coming back to a deeper question which a lot of people have been demanding, the creative freedom of expression should not be restricted by the rider in the clause (2) is where I have a huge problem. My entire argument in this regard is based on the premise of non discrimination and equality in the constitution would hold true. So when you waive off the rider for someone like MF Hussain to allow him to paint whatever he wants no matter how offending or immoral or indecent it may be, but he should be allowed to do as it is his form of creative expression. This is where my problem starts, now a good for nothing guy is standing on the corner of the crossroads and making lewd gestures to women passing by. Now he doesn’t say anything nor physically touches them. So technically he is performing an art form which can be a mime (or we can call it something else) which is offending, indecent & immoral to a lot of people (while it might be funny to some idiots standing around) but our constitution would allow it in the absence of the clause (2). I would accept a lot of arguments on this, but I would not accept an argument which is based on the premise that the laws of this Good-For-Nothing-Guy should be different from MF Hussain and I would not accept that Art & Paintings need to be given more rights than Mime (or whatever you want to call those lewd gestures technically).

He no doubt was one of the best painters India ever had but then he was a pathetic movie maker too (If I would have met him I would have asked my money back for GajaGamini).To conclude I would only say, my Hussain saab’s soul rest in peace. I have no issues with him or what he did; he paid a hefty price for it in his life time.It’s not an easy thing to live in self-imposed exile. I am sure the majority of the Indian population is gracious busy enough to forgive and forget him as they would soon forget the likes of A Raja & Kalmadi to elect them back in power then I guess the best painter of India deserved the “Saare Gile Shikwe Maaf” from us.

 

Life Lessons from a Paani Puri Wala

I have been away from this blog for a long time but that is not what is troubling me right now. The reason for the lack of updates is not that I have been terribly busy, which I have been, thanks for asking by the way. I have been thinking about lot of things about my life, the stuff I do at work and otherwise. Its good to introspect some time and raise questions about life and the direction of it. A lot of questions were raised including the reason for existence of this space, and the relevance of it in my life.

 

This month of May has been more of a learning experience for me. I have met a lot of new people travelled to a totally new place, but I witnessed something today which brought on the surface a lot of things which were simmering down under my mind. To set the context I would summarize about myself and my life a little. I am a 29 year old guy (man still sounds too old) with a business management degree from one of the finest B-Schools in India (No it is not my usual satire and I am not a shining diamond from the Chaudhary & Sons vulture venture) employed with one of the best known consulting firms in the country.

 

Coming back to today’s incident, I was returning from office early evening and it started raining cats & dogs. I was in a hurry to reach back home and log back in for work, but the lack of visibility from rain and the additional craziness of the Bangalore traffic slowed me down and I was actually observing the roads and surroundings while driving. This was when I observed a Paani-Puri wala on the side of the road. He had a small round stall of thin bamboo sticks like generally the street vendors have and he had a red cloth and a piece of plastic tied around to support Paani-Puris. He was standing on the footpath holding another huge sheet of plastic over his Paani-Puris to make sure they don’t get wet and spoiled. I could see him his hands keeping the sheet tight protecting his stall and getting drenched in the process.

 

The fact that it rained with utmost intensity and it kept raining till 2300 hrs it was highly unlikely that he would have got any customers for his Paani-Puris. Also given the highly windy rains for such a long period would have ensured that his Puris were all damp and he won’t be able to reuse them in any case. The way he was standing in the rain getting all drenched he also might have gotten sick. I think he knew all of this all along when he was sticking out in the rain protecting his business out there in the middle.

 

When I see people like him, is when my mind questions the littleness of things I do in my life. I tend to question my own work ethic in front of the dedication of this Paani-Puri wala, his love for his work & business compared to mine. I am saying this all in the light of that I have had one of the busiest months in my career and I haven’t slept for more than 4 hours since last few days. I have heard from so many colleagues that consulting is a high pressure industry and how we need to slog (which is true) but still I feel I have it lot easier compared to guys like these.

 

I also tend to wonder that what exactly holds me back to stick out like that guy for my work. I don’t think this has got to do anything to do with follow your heart and do what you love fad which is going around; I don’t really think that guy is following his passion of being a Paani-Puri wala (possible but too hard to believe). Is it because I have a qualifications that give me a comforting factor that I will be able to earn my living while he fights for his earnings everyday? Or is it because that irrespective of his size of business he owns it and feels responsible for it and I look and argue for every task that whose responsibility and job description it is? Or is it that despite being a Paani-Puri wala who might not even be educated has a clear sense of direction how he is going to move to the next phase of life by selling Paani-Puris while I clearly have loss of direction where I am going with all my work and what I intend to do with my life?

 

I really don’t know the answer, which might be simple or may be a complex mixture of everything above, but I am glad that two seconds of view of that Paani-Puri wala gave me a set of questions to think about and may be seek answers to them. So what do you guys think of these grass root level entrepreneurs, don’t they have a lot to teach us and make us ponder?

 

Rantings on Osama and Launch of a Friends Book

So my feed reader, newspaper, televisions, and both real and virtual discussions are all packed with the same event. The untimely death of Osama Bin Laden, untimely as it happened tad too late. So while the whole world is going gaga over it finding conspiracy theories if he is still alive, was he killed after being captured yada yada, I really feel how it makes a difference to my life. Though it does makes me feel like I am in the middle of a Jeffery Archer novel (not that I love being in one) but then the significant events happening over a time difference of 10 years do take the pace and steam out of the story.

However, the events and the way they unfolded were quite ironic, or rather laughable. So if I recount the series of events, there was a covert operation, which involved breaching the air space of an “important” ally and conducting a critical military operation right in the heart of a civilian area. Obviously this was done without informing the “ally” and was ordered by a Nobel Peace Prize winner, who incidentally also interfered in the local leadership of Egypt, bombed Libya, deployed additional troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, way to go for peace.

Coming back to the most wanted terrorist of the world, who was living in a million dollar mansion in one of the posh Abbotabad area at a stone’s throw of the military academy of the “ally”. This shouldn’t come as a surprise that this “ally” is also receiving critical 3 bn USD aid in terms of war planes and other military supplies to strengthen their military and intelligence agencies for war against terror. The minor fact that the mansion where Osama was living since past 5 years, is owned by the agencies funded by the same army and intelligence is not really relevant. I guess its high time Oxford dictionary needs to revamp their definition of peace and ally.

What is really funny is, that the same American government doesn’t wants India to follow their suit and take down people like Dawood Ibrahim and Hafiz Saeed, who are openly living in Pakistan and appear on National television every other day. So to cut a long story short the message is while US can kill terrorists attacking their soil and India should act restraint against their terrorists and their ally. Not to mention our honorable government who is a step ahead of US and is currently singing melancholy of bilateral ties and discussion, I mean can’t you learn from 3 wars and effin 60 years of discussion dance?

Anyways as I said all this doesn’t make a difference to my life, I hope the truth of what happened that night would emerge to the world sooner or later.

One of my co-authors in Urban Shots has come up with his own book titled “The Lotus Queen”. The book is set up in Medieval Rajasthan and is a historical fiction based on the mysterious life of queen Padmini and the rather infamous siege of Chittor. So if the genre is your type do give it a try.

Worth of Husband & A Book Launch

Recently, PhoenixRitu posted on her blog about estimating the worth of a housewife (I would use the term homemaker instead of a housewife. I somehow don’t feel housewife is an appropriate job description and the term is sexist too), where she assigned a monetary value to the chores performed by a homemaker. Though I really don’t think a monetary value can be attached to the role of homemaker, because of a simple reason once you attach a value to her it makes the person behind replaceable(which as a concept doesn’t go well down my throat).

Anyways, I thought it would be only fair if a similar post assigning the worth of the odd jobs which a husband does is done. So here I list some tasks which are thrust on the docile species known as husbands-

1- Driver- 5,000
2- Security Officer- 10,000
3- Forced Shopping Companion – 10,000
4- Shopping Bag Carrier – 5,000
6- Peace keeper between the MIL & Wife- 2,00,000
7- The person who bears the six month long headache when “Nothing” has happened- 50,000
8- Official rat, lizard, cockroach and other insect killer – 30,000
9- The official Liar who is supposed to answer the question “Am I Looking Fat”- Priceless.

So the fact remains you cannot assign the worth of a husband or a wife in monetary terms. The worth lies in being with each other and existing as a couple more than individual task accomplishers.

Now coming back to some other important events, my second book “Down The Road” has been launched last Saturday. The event was a very successful one and was grace by the presence of Ambassador from Denmark along with some well known Indian authors Vineet Nayar and Kulpreet Yadav. The event was an important milestone as an author for me as I was sharing the stage with Abhijit Bhaduri, Ahmed Faiyaz and Nikhil who all have their works in “Down The Road”.

Here are some snapshots from the event-

You can read more about these events in the press coverage which followed-

Interview


Feature

Over all “Down The Road” is another chapter in my journey of life as an author, can’t wait for the next chapters to come. Meanwhile if you would like to share my joy of going “Down The Road” you can buy the copies on Flipkart, IndiaPlaza, Landmark, Crosswords

RashmiRathi by Ramdhari Singh Dinkar

Author: Ramdhari Singh Dinkar

RashmiRathi

Publisher: Lokbharti Paperbacks

Price: 95/-

Though I have labeled this post in the category of reviews, I don’t think it is a review.  Why? For a simple reason that I don’t think I am eligible enough to review work of the great author. But the post is being featured here just to make sure all my book loving readers know about this one and the reasons why I think they should read this book.

So basically the author of this book is not your normal author, he is a winner of Sahitya Academy Award, Padma Bhushan, and also the central hall of the Indian parliament adorns his portrait as a mark of respect. Coming back to Rashmirathi, as a composition it has two things which have caught imagination, my fantasy and my delight the first being poetry and the second being the epic tale of the Mahabharata.

The elegance or the uniqueness of the poem lies the way the old tale of Mahabharata has been captured. In most of the illustrations, the Mahabharata always gives the perception through a third person’s eye or the victors’ (Pandavas) eyes. Rashmirathi provides an insight into the battle through the eyes of Karna, one of the most influential yet ignored and unlucky character in the tale.

The literary value of Rashmirathi is simply brilliant, the poetry never ceases catching your attention and delves you inside the mind of Karana and presents his side of things and his view of the Dharma. However, in the current age where Hindi as a literary language has taken a lot of backseat readers might find understanding of some words difficult use of a hind dictionary or internet might be required.

Summary: Overall a brilliant read, totally mind boggling and makes you think and capture multiple perspectives and the ethics of right and wrong. However, if a long Hindi poetry which spans across 176 pages is not your forte then this might not be the book for you.

Rating: 5 / 5

Ps. I have tried my hands on translating some poems of Ramdhari Singh Dinkar’s Rashmirathi here and here. Should make a good impression on what the book has in store for you.

 

Tweets, Protest and The Book Launch

This space is getting ignored more often then I would have liked to. But in my defense last few days were pretty hectic, there was Cricket World Cup, there was work, and did I mention Cricket World Cup?

Yeah, India won the quarter finals against Australia, semi-finals against Pakistan and finals against Srilanka. As I am reading in the news this win from India has caused a loss of two captain and a foot; apparently the Australian captain Ricky Ponting & Srilankan captain Kumara Sangakara resigned from their captaincy. While the Pakistani Captain Shahid Afridi, lost his foot as reported it was last seen in his mouth during an interview to PTV.

However, this time I was totally involved in the world cup as seen in the picture below, but what stole the piece cake during this cricket watching experience was twitter. You can read how fabulous the experience was from Monika & IHM. I cracked a lot of jokes around the matches

Srilanka says they don’t need a Poonam Pandey to do a full monty, they already have a “Mahela” for that in their team

Srilanka would be playing with one less player, Ashish Nehra dropped due to fractured finger

However, the highlight of the tweeting was my open tweet to Mr. Raj Thackarey which  was then RTed by Amitabh Bacchan. I believe in my entire span of more 17,000 tweets this was most forwarded and shared tweet and being a fan of AB himself it is good to know he read, agreed and shared something I felt & I wrote.

Coming back to some more serious things in life, I feel India is at crossroads today. It’s a country which is growing at 9% but it is also a country which is one of the most corrupt nations in world. Today, India is on the verge of what seems to be a revolution. Social activist Anna Hazare has started a fast until government includes the civil society members while drafting the Lokpal bill.

I feel strongly against corruption and I have decided to support the revolution. My reasons for supporting the revolution are-

  • Supposedly the government led by all Congress, BJP and the Third Front have not been able to pass the weak Lokpal Bill in 42 years. I don’t trust any of them to do it now.
  • The last year has all been packed with Scams, be it CWG, 2G spectrum, Adarsh Society, Mining in Bellary and obviously nothing has been done.
  • The current government actually thought Sharad Pawar deserved a seat in the GOM for drafting the Lokpal bill.
  • I don’t agree that an institution like Lokpal would not have power to register FIR or prosecute.
  • I also don’t agree the provision of severe punishments via Lokpal to the people making “frivolous” complaints while the people complained about cannot be punished. This seems like a perfect vendetta forum for anyone voicing against corruption.
  • Leaving the bureaucracy out of the purview of the Lokpal is again something I don’t think would combat the corruption. The corruption starts at the root level and goes top up via the bureaucrats.

So I plan to support him in whatever little ways I can, may be fasting on the weekend or joining the candle vigils or wearing the white strip. So if you feel convinced by what I said then please join me to support the JanLokpal bill and Anna Hazare. If you need more information please visit India Against Corruption Website to make your call.

On a completely different note, I would be in some esteemed company for my book launch in Bangalore; Ahmed who has been a great supporter and motivation would be there. Abhijit Bhaduri, the famous author of “Mediocre But Arrogant” and “Married But Available”, who I have admired and followed closely through all these years. Nikhil Rajagopalan, who is a fellow blogger and a budding author also featuring with me in “Down The Road”.

So if you are in Bangalore on 16th April, please make sure you reserve your time for “Down The Road” book launch at Crosswords, Garuda Mall. Please read the official declaration of the event here.

Down The Road Launch Invite


 

Down the Road is now available on Flipkart, IndiaPlaza, Landmark, Crosswords please book your copy now.

 

 

 

Down The Road

When I first heard these words, the immediate response in my mind was a Bryan Adam’s song “Heaven” which has a line  “Now nothin’ can take you away from me, We’ve been down that road before, But that’s over now,  You keep me comin’ back for more”. If you haven’t heard the song you can hear it here, it is one of my personal favorites.

I believe that everyone has been “Down the Road” before whose memories can’t be taken, which keeps you coming back for more, no matter how further you move on in life there is always good time to relax and go “Down the Road” across the memory lanes. Surprisingly these roads for the most of us exists in our childhood and youth, in our schools and colleges, in the canteen and lecture halls.

So this time to take you to a series of small trips of these Roads there are 16 Authors and 28 tales woven carefully in the schools and colleges, amidst friends and crushes, revolving around “The Road” you might have been before but then it’s over now and you keep coming back for more; my publishers have come up with another anthology of short stories titled “Down The Road”.  The book would be launched soon pan India and yes this one also has a story written by me.

Down The Road

Down The Road

So folks what do you think about going “Down The Road”?

Authorized to Authorize

I started checking my google reader as soon as I opened my laptop, generally the rest of the routine goes like this, there would be WTF sort of news item sitting right there on my one of the news feed and I would tweet about it. Couple of RTs and if I am lucky one of the biggies of twitter would reply back and the day starts at a perfect note. Something was wrong today, I opened my reader skim read through the various news feeds out of the 632 unread news items there wasn’t a single WTF news. I was wondering since morning what has the world come to, would my day be ruined in this fashion. Is our political class have gone so bankrupt that they cannot produce one WTF statement a day? What has happened to Mulayam, Mayavati, and mani Shankar Aiyer’s of the Indian Politics, how can they be so silent over the fall of the Indian politics?

However, the relief came only towards the afternoon and from our honorable Prime Minister himself. Finally, yours truly got the WTF line to tweet about. So finally the Cash For Votes Scam which has shot to limelight after the Wikileaks published the cable and mentioned Capt. Satish Sharma and Nachiket Kapur showed US embassy officials chests of cash for buying MPs. And as usual there was a lot of protest and chaos over the entire thing. Though we should not forget the people who were protesting were the same people who were offered the cash and they didn’t think it was appropriate to protest unless Wikileaks brought the whole thing in open. Sorry I digress, coming back to our Honorable PM shri MMSji has issued a statement whose crux in a single line would be “I did not authorize anyone to purchase votes” for uninitiated you may read the complete news article here.

Now coming back to the statement of our beloved PM, Sir we understand the inflated ego and I am “the” Prime Minister of India bit. But then one shouldn’t press the luck too far, I mean everyone in the country can swear you didn’t authorize it. That’s like the most obvious statement on the face of the earth. What reflects in your statement are two obvious facts, one that the purchasing of votes happened. Now, we all know that we saw the bundles in the parliament being shown across the world on television and to add credibility to it is wikileaks. Now coming back to the second obvious part of your statement, You didn’t authorize this purchase of votes. Now my dear sir since when did you ever had the power to authorize anything in this country. I mean I am the PM bit, we all know is a good joke till the Rahul Baba becomes old enough. To start with you weren’t authorized to authorize as mildly putting it. Given your statements in the past that you are not responsible for the CWG and 2G obviously you didn’t authorize those either. I mean I can totally see you telling Raja “Go boy fly your wings across the spectrum” and to Kalmadi was told “Go boy for CWG which is Congress Wealth Generation.”

So coming back to your statement, I would seriously like to know, “Who authorize you to give such a BS statement.” Come on Sir, better advices are readily available at 10 Janpath, that too pre-authorized. Make hay while sun shines J

 

Parenting & Alcohol

This is a topic, I am not an expert on but then whatever comments I make is based on my general sense of good & bad; which essentially is developed based on my religious belief and upbringing which I defended in a previous post of mine.

I have in recent times witnessed a lot of lapses in Parenting but then Shilpa’s Post finally triggered me to right this one. Here are some instances I have witnessed-

“A small gathering in the house, and breezer was served. A couple with children, aged around 10 years, allowed them to have sips/gulps from the drink.”

“A party and a large gathering the entire family is invited, everyone is drinking starting from beer, scotch, to tequila including the non adults in the party.”

“A mother during a party gives some spoonful of vodka to her toddler less than a year old.”

“Two kids discussing when they meet in a social gathering, where one of them asks other to have a beer. The other one refuses saying the parental restrictions and the other one counters telling that he always has a drink with the parents.”

All these instances have happened in front of me, the background of the kids is generally middle and upper middle class. The parents are supposedly super educated i.e. have completed their B. Tech, Mtech, MBA etc. and maintain an English speaking culture amongst them and the kids, send them to classes starting from singing, dancing, karate to salsa, tango and personality development.

Now very honestly, I don’t condone drinking for anyone and when it comes to women I believe they harm them more and for kids my only reaction is being aghast, even at the thought of it.

I know in countries like UK & US, there is a agency or a watch dog which keeps an eye on how the children are treated and an act like any of the above would be deemed illegal for the parents. And for repeated offenders the agency reserves the right to place the children in a more responsible home. In short the way the children of the country are grown up is the collective responsibility of the country and is implemented quite responsibly and rigorously.

On the contrary, India is a different land all together where we as a country are struggling to implement education for all, abolition of child labor. I am very sure that there is a law which makes the parents condoning of Alcohol below the minimum drinking age illegal but then it is never implemented. In India you can never be sure of that if you tip off the names of the people your identity would be concealed (which obviously belong to your social circle) and also the cops would come and take a bribe from the parents and leave things at that.

Now my views are totally based on the premise, that alcohol is not the best of the edible things around, not for anyone and not for kids for sure. Given the situation in India some 20 years ago the people in your social circle it was against our culture and our religion too. There would be elders who would point out that’s wrong; and even the so called forward minded drinking people would not introduce their children to alcohol. There used to be a social taboo, a religious tenet against drinking and even the people who used to drink regularly were ashamed and avoided doing it in front of their parents, children and immediate family.

Now today, “I drink with my parents” is one of the most common answers I hear from youngster I talk to these days on the topic of alcohol. In my humble opinion the legal route to this problem would never work in a country like ours. Nor does this mean I support the route of “Ram Sena” and their act of vandalism in Mangalore. But the way we have diluted the fabric of our religious tenets for the comfort and forgotten that the advancement for the sake of advancement should not be accepted.

I certainly feel that there is a need to ask that what kind of world we are creating and who governs the individual decisions that have an impact on the overall society. Consider the family and child below (Excerpt lifted and mildly edited from Wikipedia)

“He was asthmatic and was given special attention in his childhood. He was educated at the elite Mayo College in Ajmer. He then completed two years of undergraduate courses in Commerce at a college in Chandigarh. He initially thought of completing an MBA, but he joined the family business instead. He also built up the Piccadilly hotel chain including a pub-cum-discothèque in Chandigarh, and a theatre.”

Everything sounds hunky and dory and great choices above but then I believe in the family nobody questioned that why a boy less than 22 years of age has started drinking or entered in pub & disco business. We as a society will only cry foul when that 22 year old boy shoots Jessica Lal for not serving him a drink. I question the fact that he got into Alcohol and nobody in the family was aware or did anything to stop him. I don’t sympathize or support Manu Sharma but then I also believe 22 is a young age and there are mistakes you might make. There should always be a social guidelines & a check on people to avoid them from being fatal for them and the others.

This brings me back to the initial issues that how do we, as a society, keep our checks & balances? How do we distinguish right from the wrong? Is our legal system strong enough?

I believe the answer is within a broad sense of right and wrong which essentially lies in religious tenets and way of life which continuously evolve with time.