Tag Archives: Politics

Book Review: More Salt Than Pepper by Karan Thapar

More Salt than Pepper - Karan Thapar
Author: Karan Thapar
Publisher: Harper Collins
Price: 399/-

I have subscribed to Times of India, The Hindu, Indian Express, and The Economic Times at different points in my life. Somehow The Hindustan Times never got any kind of favor from me, have to actually admit that I have almost never picked up HT ever in my life even casually. The options were always exercised for no apparent or conscious reason. The one thing this book did, was make me regret why I didn’t picked up HT on Sundays for past 12 years of my life.
The book is a compilation of selected articles by Karan Thapar written for the HT column called Sunday Sentiments. Not based on any theme or having an objective behind them, they just take you through a long journey through eyes of a journalist. His take on everything under the sun, starting from his early days as a journalist and sometimes as a student, to the recent times when he was an established TV anchor.
This is the kind of book which is a light and an enjoyable but still a serious read, as casual as a Sunday newspaper and as serious as a newspaper editorial. The articles, most of them are carefully selected to not only leave a good taste of thoughts in your mind, but also to make a chewy and thinkable read along with that. Individual articles are very enjoyable and engaging though the book doesn’t have a story, but Karan Thapar has organized his articles in the manner that they not only seem connected but also maintains a flow in the readers’ mind.
Karan Thapar, has had an elite and intellectual life, born in a diplomatic family and getting educated at Doon along with the India’s De-Facto first family’s children proceeding to further education has Cambridge. He also has contacts and experience with the bigwigs of politics and diplomacy and there have been multiple articles which report the experience and his views on things around him, giving a rich insight of his experiences.
Another interesting thing about the book is the articles written long time back, which one can judge how apt or appropriate his insights, analysis were at that time. With the benefit of hindsight a lot can be judged and one can simply laugh it over how big an issue was at a certain time and on the other hand sometime can learn how some assumptions are the biggest mistakes.
All in all, the entire book is a brilliant read, and also a collectable which one should make a part of their collection. The book captures the essence of India in a wide sense through very narrow collection of articles. Something you would like to pass on to children saying “Humara zamana kuch aisa tha”.

Summary: If you haven’t subscribed to HT and have not followed the Sunday Sentiments column this book is a must read.
Rating: 4.5/5

Wall Project Mumbai Vandalized

Wall project in Mumbai was vandalized recently (you can read more about it here), though neither I am a resident of Mumbai nor I was associated with the Wall project in Mumbai in any way, but I felt disgusted about it. Everything said and done, Wall Project was a very beautiful initiative to bring in the citizens to actually connect to their city and city to connect with its people. The vandalism against such an initiative is itself heinous but what affects me more is a bigger issue lying underneath.

Vandalism of the Wall Project, was an insult to the hard work, dedication of the people who stayed in the hot sun and put in a lot of effort with a dream to make their city beautiful and more to the city of Mumbai itself. The issue I am talking about here is suppressing of the educated common urban people. If we look at the demographics of the people who actually were on the ground for executing the Wall Project, were our common educated urban dwellers, not subscribing to a particular caste, creed, religion, ethnicity. The stood for what the spirit of Mumbai is, the cosmopolitan culture of the city. They were the ones who were not bothered whether it is called Mumbai or Bombay, independent of the name they wanted it to be beautiful and artistic.

Now the question I ask myself and may be the entire nation is,

What happens when Yashraj Films movie “Aaja Nach Le” have the words “Lohar” and “Sunar” in a song. The lyrics of the songs are changed. Reason: The movie might be vandalized as it doubles up as ethnic castes in India with the professions itself and might affect the feelings of the particular caste.

What happens when Sharukh Khan’s Billu Barber is released and word barber is dropped from the title of the movie. Reason the people object because the barber in the movie sounds derogatory to the barber community, and the Hairdressers’ Association of Mumbai members are invited to the premier of the movie

What happens when Karan Johar’s Wake Up Sid has a dialogue referring Mumbai as Bombay. He comes out  with a public apology which is hung across on every ticket counter, because the objection was through the MNS and given the history they all knew that the movie would not be playing anywhere in Maharashtra if they don’t come out and be apologetic about it.

And now what happens when a group of young educated people trying to beautify their city? Their project gets vandalized. Any substantial action taken, no this would be ignored. Everyone knows for the fact they are educated commoners they don’t have a ethnic/caste/political affiliations. They won’t get the leverage; they are educated people and would be non-violent. They won’t take down to the streets and beat everyone up who is trying to buy the tickets of any movie which vandalized the Wall Project. So what is the best thing to do, step over them, ignore them and use all the hue and cry these commoners make for your free publicity bytes.

I certainly don’t want to believe this but I don’t why the cynical me deep down knows that If somehow the film makers know that if this is not rectified this very group might not let their movies play in any of the theatres in Mumbai, the walls would be cleared off with the posters overnight. I hate myself for believing in something like this in a country where Mahatma Gandhi taught us the lessons of non violence but Bapu that doesn’t seem to be working anymore…

Update: I have read that the posters for Aladin have been taken down after Ritesh Deshmukh and Sujoy Ghosh have apologized though no news on any action being taken on the publicity agency.

Shakti Aur Kshama (Power & Forgiveness)

This is one of the best poems and a very relevant lesson in diplomacy. Written by Ramdhari Singh Dinkar. One of the most cherished poets in Hindi language.

I read the above poem when I was a school kids and the thoughts of it lingered with me for a long long time. It has stayed with me for over years and I wanted to produce something as my tribute and gratitude towards the great poet and his impeccable philosophy. This is my effort to portray the above poem in the English language.

Morals mercy kindness resolve and sacrifice
Everything possible on earth you tried,
Of the mighty Suyodhan we know
No signs of truce and acceptance he showed.

The merciful thou were to enemies old & new
Carrying the humility by your own virtue,
The evil Kaurava’s laughing & indulging in their vice
Mistook your humility as Cowardice.

For all the years of atrocities and bearing the pain
The result always is no gain,
The might of the male or the powers divine,
Have lost their glory for being soft & kind.

The mercy & forgiveness can be bestowed by everyone
But the glory resides only for the snake with the venom,
What value is the mercy of the soft & kind,
Like the snake who lost his poison, and its teeth been grind.

Remember the old legend of lord Rama my friend
Who with all humility asked the sea to make amends,
Three days only the words of love and kindness he said,
Urging with the limitless sea for a path to be laid.

When the sea sat unheard out of his own arrogance,
Lord Rama also enraged his temper and stance,
With all the masculinity on his bow and the fire on the tip of arrow,
The sea realized what he should have already known.

Came down to his feet, begging forgiveness of Ram,
Agreed to give the way getting his life in alms,
In reality the glory of the mercy and humility
Reside in the one’s power and ability.

The whole word is willing to worship the merciful, humble and the kind
Only if the prowess over the world is enlightened behind,
The essence of the humility as a virtue
Lies in you ability to destruct, not in stew.


Prayas slowly sipped on the “Chai”, it was big day today. He was so happy that today everyone around him would feel a little better about him. Life had been a hell hole for him, and things have started changing today.
He still remembered his good old days when everything was beautiful, everyone in the world loved him, his parents were proud of his impeccable grades, his trophies won in singing competitions and almost everything else he did. He was a proud son of his father, the pampered child of his mother, the most reveled company among his friends. It had not ended here, he was the love of the hottest dame in the college Poorva. His life seemed to be perfect, from an eye of an average guy.
Prayas and Poorva had been friends since childhood and before he knew Poorva had him booked for herself, and he was more than happy to be with her. After all she was one of the most important person in his life and was as close to him as his family. He was more than happy to accept her as love of his life at the tender age of fifteen. The stage of life was all set for him, with parents agreeing on their relationship and his gifted brilliant mind made him all the more confident about his life.
He just looked at the bright sun outside and felt the beautiful breeze gushing on his face, and he saw Poorva coming and walking up to his side and his mind got lost in the memories of the day when she turned sixteen. It was a beautiful day, they have been desperately waiting for both of them to turn sixteen, and decided that they would save each other for that day. So finally the day had come, they sneaked on the terrace behind the water tank, he looked at her face she was glowing in anticipation, she slowly spread the covers they had brought and he gently pushed her on it and threw himself on her biting her lips through his mouth slowly. She took his hands in hers and gently guided them inside her T-shirt, It seemed like the softest thing he had ever touched, his mind was racing amidst various thoughts, he couldn’t understand how this can be happening. He dawned back to reality when Poorva pulled off his shorts with the underpants and he could feel her tongue doing wonders to him. He closed his eyes shrugging off all the questions of his mind to enjoy the bliss, which the most beautiful girl he knew was taking him through, thinking of how much she loved him and how much he cared for her. He felt like he was trapped in an ecstasy with one of his foot inside and the other outside. Poorva, till then had decided to have him completely for herself; and she slowly pushed him inside her, experimenting with her inexperienced self.  He drained himself out on top of her with the small droplets of rain falling. The water from the rain was actually getting in the eyes, when he came back to present. It had started raining heavily, the bright sunny day was gone behind the dark clouds. He came back inside picking up his cup of “Chai” and sat down on the couch, lot of memories seemed to have made his head feel heavier. Poorva was sitting beside him, smiling and naughty as she always was. He smiled and stroked her cheek, there was no need of speaking anything. He knew she could read his mind, eyes and smile. She slid her hand behind his back, and he could feel her sharp and well manicured nails feeling his crack, a chill shiver ran down his spine. He looked at her face and smiled back responding to her innocent and lovable smile. He felt ashamed that he made her go through this hell, and he cursed himself and the god for playing such a miserable joke on their life. With her hand still behind his back he lost himself in the past.

It was their graduations party, they partied in one of the best discotheques in the city till the late hours in the night. It was too late, when Vikrant said he wanted more drinks. Vikrant was a friend, he had recently met, but there was some unknown bond between two of them, that they gelled like age old buddies. Vikrant was a great guy, he had moved into his college for his last year from a different city. Soon after entering he was the most talked about person of the class, he was one of the most entertaining guy with a good hand at all kind of sports. This made him famous among the guys and his good looks and perfectly chiseled body which was a result of regular gym for years made the girls go gaga over him. Prayas and Vikrant became close buddies as if they were destined to be together, they vouched over their friendship that it could last forever. However little did they knew that even their friendship would not remain so forever.
When callously walking outside the club when Vikrant asked for more drinks, they decided to go to his farmhouse and get sloshed there. The two of them drove back to the farmhouse and he remembered starting over a bottle of Absolut Vodka.
Prayas woke up in with a terrible body ache and a bad hangover. He flexed his muscles to find Vikrant sleeping next to him, on seeing him ran a strange feeling all across his mind. He was shivering, he reached out for his T-Shirt which was thrown carelessly on the floor smelling of the drinks and smoke from last nights party when he saw the stack of clothes lying with his T. He suddenly realized there was something wrong, he didn’t had any clothes on his body. He saw that Vikrant was already awake, and was watching him. He wanted to shout and scream, but somehow the voice had left him. Vikrant broke the awkward silence, he said I am not sure you realize this but we are different from others, a lot different. He shouted, abused him, Vikrant held his hand and embraced him. Prayas could feel his tears flowing through his eyes, but he couldn’t let himself pull away from Vikrant. His mind was going crazy, he uttered there must be something wrong, I think I should go to a doctor. This is not possible, It cannot happen to me.
Vikrant silently said, how normal this was, though not common, but perfectly normal. He added “If you want to see a doctor, go ahead Prayas, but this is not a sickness. This is who you are, your own identity. I know what you are going through and I know what else you will have to go through. I have been there, faced all that, I can tell you its going to be an uphill battle”
Prayas, could still feel his tears rolling down his eyes but his heart was calm as never before. The embarrassment of two guys sitting butt naked in the bed holding hands wasn’t a picturesque site to him but the peace was like never before. He had never been so himself as he was now. This was not as he had planned things in the scheme of things but this was how it was. Destiny had his own ways of playing with people, he was slowly accepting the fact, and he realized what has happened.
He smiled remembering that day when he discovered his true self, his life and love of his life in Vikrant. Sipping the last sip from his “Chai”, he remembered how much of trouble his parents, Poorva had to go through to accept the reality. The most important and difficult was to break the news and wait for them to accept the reality. The only support was Vikrant being there to tell and talk to him. He could himself understand what he was going through. The reactions had varied from extreme rage, denial, and disgust. He had seen his mom & dad having sleepless nights over him. His consoling and explaining with all references from articles on internet didn’t help. He knew her mom was fasting that her son might become all right one day. But he already knew God’s wish and he also knew there was no turning back from here. He thought of finishing of his life to ease the pain of all the people he knew, but always his brain ruled over the thought. He didn’t wanted to waste his life over such a thing, he realized though everything has changed, nothing has changed for him. Life still looked bright, he still was the best student in his class with the most promising career. He still could sing the songs melodiously and now he had someone to look forward in his life. He knew that life would be difficult for him personally, but he couldn’t think of leaving everyone who matttered in his life all alone.
Today was a huge day. The court of law had mandated that he could choose his partner in Vikrant, the law of the country did not think of him a criminal anymore. It was a big day, now he could finally think of living with Vikrant, he told it so excitingly to his parents and surprisingly they seemed happy too. He knew this would be a big step in his life and would bring in more problems in their life. His reality was still a secret which was tightly held between Vikrant, Mom, Dad and Poorva but now everyone in the town would know of it. But he didn’t care after all the law had accepted people like him and after all people follow the law. he was so happy that he would be accepted in reality. His parents would understand him and others like him better and so would everybody else….
He came back to reality when he heard his name being called, he looked up. Poorva was standing in front of him. She was looking more stunning than ever, he saw Mom & Dad coming into the room. He saw mom was silently crying, he was about to asked when she pointed towards Poorva.
Poorva ran her fingers through his hair, her eyes were also moist. He tried to ask, she just silenced him with her finger and handed him the letter. He opened it with trembling hands, and started reading-
“Dear Prayas,
I am not sure how to write this letter, but since Mom & Dad could not do this, I am writing this for all three of us.  Prayas, you have been the light of our life for so many years.  You have been a wonderful son and a best friend and a lot more to all of us.
We don’t know how you became the way you are, but we tried a lot to be with you and let you be what you want to be. Things are fine the way they were, but the step you decided to take today is something which we cannot let you proceed with.
We have tried real hard to come to terms with your reckless lifestyle, but this is going over board. We have had a strong base in this city, people know us and we have a reputation and respect to maintain. We love you but that does not mean that you can go to ruin everything we have created in all these years.
Prayas you have been a very important person in our life, but this embarrassment you are going to bring us by your acts in Public, is something which we cannot go through. We have thought a lot about this and have come to a conclusion that you can not live with us anymore. Its time to say goodbye Prayas, these would be the last time you would hear from us. Bless you for being in our life.
Lots of Love,
Mom, Dad and Poorva”

Prayas tried to speak something; he was speechless as teared rolled down his eyes. He tried to say something but could only produce a choked coughing sound, a thin line of blood trickled down from his mouth.
He looked towards Mom & then Poorva, she said, “We added Poison to your tea, just relax Prayas it would be painless. Don’t worry you will be fine.”
Her words echoed through his head “Don’t worry you will be fine”, He looked towards his mother, who was crying with sign of acceptance, his dad who was serious as ever, he as always knew what was important, and Poorva, who still loved him; perhaps. He closed his eyes wished Vikrant could be here. He wished his parents would have let him have his last few moments of love. But he knew they would never understand.

On 3rd of July india took a giant step forward, legalizing the gay sex in India. Approximately 7% of the world population is GLBT (Gays, Lesbians, BiSexuals and Transgender). India is the 127th country to accept their relationships. (Source)
This story is written as an afterthought after witnessing the kind of fight they had to put for decriminalization, With the law in place we are still a far way behind from getting the GLBT population proper acceptance across the country. Hope god provides us the sanity to respect our fellow human beings as they are.

Elections 2009 in SA

I got this brilliant Idea from Atul who happened to just tweet it forward. But suddenly it makes huge sense. So here is my pitch for “Elections’ 2009 in South Africa”. This addressed to the huge audience of all the Manmohan Singh, Mayawati, Mulayam Singh Yadavs, and Arun jaitleys of the world. Instead of moving the IPL Season-2 out of India, let’s move Elections 2009 out of India. Now the obvious question you would ask is why?

Oh please don’t hesitate or get embarrassed nobody expected you to know this one, as a matter of fact they don’t expect you to anything except the profound expertise in your area of “How to fool the people to fill your coffers with Tax Payers Money”

So I give you 5 very valid reasons that why Elections-2009 should be moved to South Africa-

1- You know it would be a huge popularity thing for all you political parties. You know I am not sure what would my kaam wali bai, or the Ramu kaka who brings the milk daily from the village with the broadband you are going to provide when he doesn’t has a computer to use it. But I am sure he definitely can use a trip on an airplane to a Phoren Land. You know this can be a huge popularity contest; you know all parties can choose their favorite destination. Given the political and social biography of the candidates I am sure at least the exotic locations would be an incentive for people to decide on which party to cote for.

2- Instead of spending huge amounts on campaign like Jaagore.com. Just advertise Vote and get a free trip to South Africa. I am sure this would be a huge crowd puller for the elections and we might see the electoral voting percentages going up to unheard levels.

3- Another benefit of having the elections abroad will be, all the goons that any political party would have hired to capture booths or vandalize during election time would be denied Visa because of criminal records. This would lead to either a peaceful election or political parties hiring fresh breed of goons giving the fresh goons an overseas opportunity to start their career, which would be huge given the shortage of good jobs given the global recession (for further brownie points we can prevent foreign nationals to apply for these goony jobs)

4-Come to think of it I keep falling in love with this Idea, Now that the MLAs have already decided that they would bring the Royal Tradition of Hunting back to India to ensure the endangered species are extinct. It would be a glorious opportunity to tie a Wildlife Safari to give the citizens to understand the aura and prowess of their self proclaimed king, that what huge and dangerous animals they hunted. I am sure they won’t be any left as number of MLA’s would in most probabilities outnumber the Rhino’s in the Kaziranga national park.

5- Last but not the least it would bring back the “South African Premier League” back to India as “Indian Premier League- Season-2” and Lalit Modi & the IPL gang will spare the Indian audience from a series of “The Game goes internat
ional advertisements”

So you see it is a very sensible decision to move Elections’2009 to South Africa. Why SA? Well they anyways have their elections in a few days, they don’t mind IPL happening with elections so I am sure they won’t mind an election dry run also before their final elections.

Disclaimer: This post is written entirely for humor and fun. It does not reflect in any way, authors view on democracy or the election process or anything about the constitutional process.

Thank you for Smoking

Until recently I was having a discussion with some of my friends and I expressed my views about one of the discussed topics, the recently imposed ban on smoking at public places. I had some different views from the group which thought ban was a progressive step taken by the government. That is what Sumeet has quoted here in his blog. I thought it would be justified to the audience when I should explain why exactly I am against the ban.

To start with let’s get to the core of the subject, what exactly is the purpose of the ban? What can be defined as the Public place? First of all let us understand the meaning of ban, a ban is a very strict decree which entails a prohibition of certain activity by making it illegal. If you intentionally or unintentionally commit the mentioned activity you become a criminal and can be prosecuted for the same. So when government has put up a ban on smoking in public places. The basic intention I believe behind this ban is; the final enlightenment of the government that smoking is injurious to health and is a probable cause of cancer and other respiratory conditions. So the ban should be instituted to protect all the people who might die of the diseases caused by smoking. Now for the government as an institution all the subjects should be equal, so the attempt to protect all citizens should be equal. A person who is a citizen of India should not be allowed to consume cigarettes invariably something like Marijuana, Cocaine or Heroine. A lot of you would say that these are drugs and they are harmful; but the crude fact is all these drugs and cigarettes are addictive and harmful for health. Cigarette might be a slower addiction and the harmful affects show in a bit longer run; now I mean it is similar to say consumption of potassium cyanide on will is disallowed; but for suicide a relatively slower poison available for consumption. If the intent of protecting people is so genuine and honest; then shouldn’t government go ahead and ban the sale of all kinds of cigarette across India; that would serve a purpose effectively. I mean this would immediately and most effectively reduce the ill-effects of cigarettes across the country. But the government wouldn’t do so, because they do not want the high taxes coming from the tobacco going down.

Second argument which would come would be the idea of free will; that a person is allowed to smoke but not in public spaces where it might harm others. Now the basic idea is that if a person is allowed to smoke in private; then let us first define what public is and what is private and how would this equation affect people. Now for the sake of discussion let us take a definition of public as something which is not completely owned or leased or habitat for the person. So a person is allowed to smoke in the locations which are not above which more or less leaves the homes. Now here comes my major concern if the government is so concerned then why this bias against the family members of the same person. For a government since all its subjects are equal why risk the heath of the family members of the smoker. Interestingly the guy who always used to go out of the house to puff a cigarette (he smoked because he couldn’t quit) so that it doesn’t harms his family. He used to walk to a solitary corner on the road near the Pan Shop and used to smoke. Such an amicable solution; now the same guy when indulges himself with his tobacco becomes a criminal as he violates the ban. So to be a non-criminal he is supposed to suffocate his children and family. Now if the government wanted the people to be healthy and in good spirit wouldn’t it would have been more simpler just to say no one is allowed to cell cigarettes in India.

But here is the catch government when constituted this law is neither interested in the health of the public in general. Nor it has to be in any concerns of its positive effects. What would actually happen which we all know including our honorable health minister-

1- The poor labor class for whom the source of entertainment is derived from smoking a 5 paise bidi would continue to smoke in public. They anyways cannot afford to pay fine; so might be on some rough days constables would chase them for pure fun may be struck a couple of whacks and leave the smokers with their sticks

2- The so called common man, the middle class who is not strikingly rich but still have a wallet and some money to pay to the cops would be troubled by the police.

3- The illegal smoking places would pop up here and there which would pay hafta to the police to let people smoke in their premises.

4- The minister being a highly knowledgeable man would be able to fool the public like every time but this time all educated public to enhance is public image and vote bank.

So I am totally against the ban of smoking in public places. So Minister sir my humble request to you is before you come with these awesome ideas of yours why don’t you direct the tax income for cigarettes to the health and come out one day and say that in India no one would die because there wasn’t proper beds, medicine, equipment available in the “SARKARI HOSPITAL”. When you have done this ban cigarettes, ban alcohol, ban cheese or oil if you want to for heath reason and I will campaign for you. But before you breach the free will of the people; earn the right to do it apart from elections.

Education & Courage

I was always thought good education is the most important constituent of a sensible human being. Education I always believed brought to the human beings the power to judge right and the wrong and act accordingly. Lately after going through the plight of a very good friend I realized that all this education stands waste because of the lack of courage and availability of independence in social structure.

When I look forward to the issues and really think about it, education seems to be one of the biggest ironies of the life of my friend. Actually not only she but I am sure there would be hundred of other women who would be under going the same thing for lack of courage and independence in social structure and may be men too. One of the better students in the country, an engineer from a fairly good institute and an MBA from a renounced Institute in her profile. She after all this knows what is good for her and what she wants out of life. 24 years of life with 6 years of a technical and professional education has given her a lot of perspectives about life. With roots descending to an unknown village in Uttar Pradesh, she has seen a lot of life and is very competitive in all spheres of life.

I always believed education could bring changes in people that made them great as they were but I guess I was wrong when I see her plight. Despite knowing what is good for her, what she wants out of life. She will start making compromises in her life, for her orthodox family has never heard of a women who can have her own will in the family. So how can she be spared? Is it not the Males who spent most of life in that village know how she should spend her life, they already know what is good for her. If she doesn’t agrees may be she can be killed, or her mother for that matter. Does it makes a difference? Can education help u save from the bullet or a give you courage to stand against one. I think her mother did really a good job to make sure that she studies so hard and go high above all expectation, but she really forgot to teach her to stand for what she thought was right.

The interesting fact is that all her education has made her plight more unbearable, a girl who has probably never seen a school will never be able to sure what was right for her and what was not. But girls like these will always know that what is happening to them, what has happened to them is wrong and they will live with it all their life. They will do what the males of the family wanted them to do and at the end may be tell their daughters too that they should follow the same league. Was all that education able to brought a change? Wasn’t one of the finest minds in the country is going to be wasted, and deprived a right of choice? Does she actually have a say in her own life or family? There can not be a more waste of education than this for the lack of courage. I have no answers to these questions to help my friend. But I wish the only solution is a pinch of courage, to sit down and listen and then stand up and say that I am what I am and I know how to handle my life and I need to take charge, and my Time is NOW!!! There are scary thoughts when I think of this, but it is still better than a life suffering and living like hell for rest of her life agonizing every minute for the single minute when she had a choice to stand up.

Nice to hear from you Mr. Shourie

Today was the day after so many days of wait, that I finally got to see one of my Idols Mr. Arun Shourie, live on stage, One of the special days of my life. The lecture was good a lot of orientation, though it was a shock to me, I was expecting a high content based session with lots of facts, figures and numbers. i was expecting an economist, a journalist in action. What came was a pleasant surprise (though it was a shock for me, as I always saw Mr. Shourie as an economist, politician and a journalist. This was what I had conceived when I had read his books). It was neither the economist nor the journalist and nor the politician in action. It was the leader Mr. Arun Shourie in action. It was a small talk laden with a vision, a vision to excellence of individuals and their synergies for the country. A vision which he saw for every youth in the country and all he did was to spark the same vision in our hearts, in a profound an elegant manner that every person in the hall was ears to the voice. It was such a pleasure to see and hear Mr. Shourie, his vision and to add salt to the taste was his excellent articulation. I have yet to come across a speaker who is so concerned about his audiences that even when he quotes random verses from ‘Dhampad’ he makes an accurate English translation for his audience. It’s been around 12hrs since I have seen Mr. Shourie, but a thought which is still lingers in my mind, “Just take one public issue, just anyone which concerns you and do something about it.” the thought some how sticks, may be it is too simple to fade away. He came, spoke and went away all he left for the people in the hall was an idea, an answer to the question asked by many of the youths today “How can we make a difference?”
For me the day would imbibe into my life, with an amazing memorabilia. Autograph of Shri Arun Shourie on one of my books. Thanks Shikha, Rahul, Manan, Shweta, Mahima and the I-CIT for helping me get a souvenir for me.

A Rendezvous in Waiting

It’s been long wait, after the truth behind the teasers was revealed. Sometimes little lines change many things. A poster put on the walls of the institute, made me realized that one of my dreams would be true. I would be one of the lucky people who would get a chance to see and listen to one of most admired personalities by me, Mr. Arun Shourie. Meeting a person of his mettle would be a lifetime experience, one of the most radical thought leaders in the current political and social arena., would be right in front of me in my very own institute. Wouldn’t that be fun!!!!
After reading two of his books out of twenty I can say that he is one of the most revolutionary people in the Indian politics, someone who has the guts to stand against the system, say things which are often subdued for the political interest. A person who can give the right perspective about India, a person who can quote excerpts from ‘Vedas’ as comfortably as he can from ‘Quran’ or ‘The Holy Bible’ a true secularist at heart. Someone who has the guts to publish a book on the most sensitive issue of the day like reservations and can state his views so openly as

Falling Over Backwards: An essay against Reservations and against Judicial populism by Arun Shourie
How is it that what was explicitly forbidden by the constitution – classification based on caste – has become the rule? How is it that what were enabling provisions have become mandatory minima? Where does the figure 50 per cent come from? How is it that in practice it is exceeded blatantly? Are the benefits not being hogged by a few, the better-off amont these castes? Has the “creamy layer” been actually hived off? How is it that what were begun as reservations at entry became reservations in promotions also? How did this become a right to accelerated promotions? How did that become a right “accelerated promotions with consequential senority”? How did that become a right to have the prescribed standards diluted – to the point of being waived althgether? Even in educational institutions. Is this any way to become a “knowledge super-power”? As thee has been no caste-wise enumeration and tabulation since the 1931 Census, where does this mythical figure – “OBC’s are 52 per cent of the population” come from? And what did the 1931 Census itself say about its caste-wise figures? How have the Courts come to acquiesce in such wholesale perversion of the Constitution? Is their role to cheer such perversion on? Or is it to conserve, to protect the Constitution?
* T he above is an excerpt of the book which is freely available on the internet

It as been a long wait for me, but tomorrow is the day when I will have a chance to be face to face with Mr. Arun Shourie, a men of guts and rational. Knowing a person who has an entry by his name in the Wikipedia (Click here to view). All this in our very own SIBM, being done by a student body of the college, That’s what we call student driven…Kudos CIT!!!! An idea which will last a lifetime.

This Time its 7/11

It is an hour past the midnight and the date has changed, I am still on internet lying flat on my bed looking thorugh the irony of life. Millions of people left there homes like everyday, telling there kids and wives that they will come back on time and how much they loved them. But 146 will never be able to make it back home, all for the 8 serial blasts in Mumbai. The TV, Radio, Sms all spreading the news like a wild fire, striking like a thunderbolt. Mobile phones are out every where people trying to reach their friends, family and relatives to know there where abouts. Ambulances, Hospital numbers, Political figures flashing everywhere but the fact would be that 146 homes would be mourning.
The beauty of life is it never stops all it ever does is to go on at its own pace, Now the date has changed and it would be a new day. Everyone would again come out of their houses in another 6 hours and move back to the life telling their kids and wife that How much they love them and that they will come early and a self confiding thought “There won’t be any blasts today!!!”.