Sunday, February 3, 2013
Saturday, September 15, 2012
Emerson’s quote does ring a bell. How often have we restrained ourselves from being our true outspoken self in front of people whom we meet only in an official environment for fear of appearing silly and juvenile? Isn’t that natural in a world where everyone is sitting to observe and judge you and label you with their judgments? Hasn’t our childish streak within been constantly strangled and suppressed in favour of appearing important to the outside world? The answers may vary of course. But who can deny that we are at our best and truest in the company of old friends.
Do not save your loving speeches
For your friends till they are dead;
Do not write them on their tombstones,
Speak them rather now instead.
Happy Friendship Day/Week/Month/Year/Lifetime to all…
Friday, July 15, 2011
For once, I found myself at a complete loss of words to describe my anguish at the loss of innocent lives in Wednesday's cowardly attacks in Mumbai. Wish the terror-mongers could atleast gather the guts to send fidayeens and shoot at us one-on-one like they did on 26/11. Atleast then we had the satisfaction of seeing nine dismembered terrorist bodies and the hollowness of their evil pursuit. Their mere brand of terror is not shameful, the terror directed at unaware and unarmed civilians is.
No amount of reassurances, loaded speeches or monetary compensation can ever bring back the dead. Its not just 21 people who have died but 21 families that have been emotionally and financially devastated forever. The injured may still live to tell their tales. Lets not even consider bringing the topics of Kasab's birthday, the corrupt Congress government or the failure of the Mumbai police and Intelligence departments into the picture. There are certains domains in public life that are beyond the understanding of laymen like us. And to become moral adjudicators or pure gossip-mongers - read Kasab's birthday - is sheer waste of time.
Well then who do we blame ? Whom do we criticize ? What do we say or write when we wish to make a serious statement ? Let's catch RR Patil. Or should we catch Prithviraj Chavan this time ? No, this guy seems smart. Just lets do what has become a national pastime - either fast-unto-death or breath down Manmohan's neck calling him a lameduck , weak-kneed, powerless Prime Minister India ever had. There starts, as well as ends, our vast understanding of the complex country we live in.
To call paapi-pet-ki-majboori as Mumbai's spirit is a topic I have discussed with my Mumbai friends endlessly. No one really agrees that there is anything praiseworthy when a Mumbaikar goes back to work as usual the very next day after the blasts. What is a mason, who lives on daily wages, expected to do? What is a govt. school teacher, who has to take a pay-cut, expected to do? What is a Software Engineer, who wags his tail as per the wishes of his firang client, expected to do? These basic economic realities, my friends, have got nothing to do with the spirit of any individual person, forget Mumbai as a whole.
Let us not ever forget that our enemy is not a person called Kasab, or a country called Pakistan. The real enemy is the school of thought that has turned hundreds of poor, innocent and unemployed youths like Kasab himself into live human bombs. The real enemies are the promoters of such thoughts who have single-handedly managed to turn a fine, peace-loving religion into a hotbed of fanaticism and intolerance. Give these vocal fundamentalists a real Kalashnikov and tell them to face our country's security forces with the same rage in their eyes and the desire to attain jannat that they inspire in their hapless cadres, and I bet they would have already died many times before their actual death.
Jannat-e-jaaneman mujhe bhi tere paas aane ka dil karta
Jannat-e-jaaneman mujhe bhi tere paas aane ka dil karta
Lekin agar mein jaan de nahi sakta, toh mein jaan le bhi nahi sakta...!!
I pray for the families of the victims and hope they gather the strength to deal with their immeasurable loss.
I also pray for the families of the terrorists who will soon need the same strength to see the rotting, dismembered dead bodies of their terrorist- sons gone astray.
Hope there is light at the end of this darkest tunnel.
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Venue : Mohali, India
Date : March 30th, 2011
An India-Pakistan encounter has never managed to be just about the respective game or respective fora where these two countries have faced each other. Their representatives bring with themselves the overwhelming pressure of expectations to outperform each other taking a cue from the embarrassing situations they have gone through when they had to be content with the bad end of the stick. As cricketing (and war) records show, Pakistan has had to bite the humble pie far too many times taking a toll on its dwindling self-respect. Yes , SELF-RESPECT is what it is about. To hell with the ignorant souls who call today's Indo-Pak match a simple game of bat and ball where one will win and one will lose. This match has the capacity to make or break careers. Remember the 2003 WC league-stage encounter where Pakistan lost? The likes of Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Saeed Anwar, Saqlain Mushtaq and Rashid Latif - national heroes of those times - had to bid farewell to the game soon after their disgraceful loss to India. Such is the impact of this high-voltage game. A loss to Bangladesh is forgiven in this country, a shock defeat to Zimbabwe can be forgotten, a batting collapse against a weak West Indies is also normal BUT even a 'loss-like' situation against Pakistan is met with angry emotions and abusive rants against players irrespective of their past performances.
There is no doubt that India has done well to qualify for the semi-finals. But that in itself doesn't speak volumes of this hot-favorite side since Sri Lanka has already qualified for the finals with relative ease and Pakistan was not even expected to make the semi-final grade after a string of losses in bilateral ties and series of spot-fixing allegations on some of its top players. In all fairness, its Pakistan who deserves full credit for coming this far on the strength of sheer talent and strong leadership from skipper Shahid Afridi - the leading wicket-taker of the World Cup so far.
India, on the other hand, has relied too much on individual performances with Sachin and Yuvraj leading the batting charge and a lonely Zaheer Khan left to try all tricks with the ball. A miserable and clueless (but media-savvy) captain in Dhoni has further compounded India's worries. The league matches don't instill much confidence either, especially the drawn match with England and a characteristic batting collapse against South Africa - who are now already out of the World Cup courtesy New Zealand who in turn are heading home courtesy Sri Lanka. That gives me logical nightmares about a possible India-Sri Lanka clash in the finals but we will reserve that discussion for another day.
To add spice to the fun, the chhakka-panjaas (politicians) have decided to partake the glory and limelight of this encounter by making this match a bilateral political affair under the guise of cricket diplomacy or Cricketomacy. Never have I understood this irrational offer of friendship when the offending side continues to be an existential threat to us and has not even assured us of full co-operation in tackling terrorism; forget apologizing for the heinous acts (26/11) planned and financed from its soil. A weak-kneed, lameduck Prime Minister, for all his integrity and honesty summed together, still doesn't add up to the expectations of the young, vibrant and demanding population of his country. Cricket cannot and should not direct the national policies of our country against a rogue neighbour. A Shahid Afridi is welcome with open hearts but an Asif Ali Zardari or a Yousuf Raza Gilani deserve nothing less than chappals in crude Hindi. To have them over as state guests when families of those who died in the 26/11 carnage still await justice and co-operation from Pakistani courts in punishing the masterminds is a sad commentary on our foreign policy. I will rest my arguments on this restive issue for now.
Coming back to cricket, there is no doubt that people from both countries are already losing sleep thinking about this encounter and its aftermath. A brilliant display of sportsmanship, nerves of steel, strong and innovative leadership is what people expect to see in a span of 100 overs today. Hope its a match that raises the stakes for the finals, hope its a match that gifts the winning nation a day of festivities and celebration and the loser's a chance at introspection. And as much as I try to resist the die-hard fan inside me, hope it gives the God - Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar - his chance at making his 100th international century in style.
As the Master Blaster himself says and we all agree, "Beating Pakistan is always special because they are a tough team and we have a bit of a history regarding Pakistan."
Hope its a special day for India tomorrow.
Let the game begin!!
Sunday, August 15, 2010
Siachen Glacier Anthem Video :
Jai Hind !!
Friday, April 30, 2010
" It was 4th September 2006, technically the first day of college for our batch and I dunno how many of u remember but we had our Orientation seminar on that rainy day. unless u bunked on that day too… we were made to listen to the history and geography of this institute where today we complete 4 full years of our course that have enriched us on various levels, given us so many memories to cherish for a lifetime, given us amazing friends wid whom we have spent the best times in these years; these 4 yrs hav given us practically everythin except a slightest idea abt the logic behind our course syllabus..
We meet on this day where we are all decked up to accept our Graduation certificates from the very University that we hav unitedly hated irrespective of caste, creed or language barriers. For some of us, these 4 yrs may also remind us the emotional grind we went thru when we got unexpected KTs on one or more than one occasion. For some, these years may define the absolutely unadulterated fun we had spendin a whale of a time doing practically nothing but sitting and chattin in the college canteen.
For some, these years have been transformational too.. Such was the classroom experience here that even sincere, hard-working pets have transformed into habitual defaulters.. or even vice versa for that matter…
Irrespective of what we gathered individually, the one thing that will probably remain on top of my college memories will be the I.V. days in Shimla-Manali. I’m sure many of u share that view.
This last semester ensured that many of us have our future course charted out in the form of placements. Many among us here have enjoyed Engg so much that they hav opted for an MS. On the other hand, some have hated it so much that they wont mind sellin Dabur Amla Hair Oil and call themselves MBAs. Some of you will join ur family business, some will take the unconventional route and opt for totally different careers. For the undecided ones, I’m sure better things are coming your way too…. But wherever you go and whatever you do, Make Yourself Count ( ok that was cheap advertisement of my personal blog but sorry I cant help it )
Now that I suppose I am famous because of this speech, I hope to be invited to your engagements and weddings whenever they take place. There’s a brand new hall right here so I m sure discounts will be offered to ex-students.
As I conclude, I wud tell u to admire the institute you study in, especially ours. Very rarely will you get to see a defaulter deliverin a convocation-cum-farewell speech 2-months in advance when he has no 'beeping' idea what the next week holds for him.
THANK YOU & ALL THE BEST… and 3 cheers to all of us....!!! "
Saturday, April 24, 2010
How many times have we basked in the glory of our successes (or excesses) in varying fields only to stand witness to its equally glorious downfalls? How easily we have converted individuals from humans-to-paranormal achievers-to-demigods and then easily brought them down to the rank of frauds and criminals? The vice versa is equally true in my beloved country.
Naming a few will clear the clouds as to what & who am I talking about. Take for instance, Lalit Modi. Not too many days ago, this ugly little duckling was a sapphire in a coal-mine for all of us. He had achieved the impossible. He wrapped the same old popular game of Cricket in a nice little package and promised us an entertainment bonanza every year. Bonanza for you, overdose for me. This alpha-male showed us that nothing is insurmountable if you are driven; even kissing, hugging, hi-fiving beautiful bolly chicks and cheerleaders is possible inspite of being ugly, unkempt and soda-glassified...... STOP --> PLAY CURRENT TRACK and you find the same name Lalit Modi today also stands for kidnapper, drug peddler, fraud, misdirected genius and what not. A typical case of an otherwise irrelevant past coming back to haunt your present. Success is difficult to achieve, but even more difficult to digest. Modi is a victim of his own ingenuity. I will not mention what the media says about him because news-reporting has transformed itself into a beautiful showbiz providing prime-time entertainment like any other over-the-top reality show. Meanwhile, you and me are busy rooting for our favorite teams.
But politics beats it all. Here we have a sophisticated, 'proper'-English speaking, career diplomat and ex-MoS Shashi Tharoor who loses his job as well as an untarnished reputation for mentoring a commercially profitable consortium (a punishable but excusable misconduct even by the strictest standards) whereas on the other side we have career-scamsters who manage to orchestrate a humongous scam even in cattle fodder and still be ministers for full terms. Not just that, they also qualify themselves as chief guests at our top B-schools lecturing the young bright future entrepreneurs on..... MANAGEMENT, if you really get what I mean. How on earth was a person who did not spare animal food allowed to look after the largest rail network in Asia that employs millions and earns millions too? The answer is by Management, my dear, management.
The Satyam fiasco, the match-fixing scandal, the Indira Gandhi story, the Narendra Modi syndrome, the Rajiv Gandhi persona (from best PM to tainted ex-PM), the Naxal issue ; have all been examples of pendulum shifts in perception. The have cost the nation its image on the international front. Worst, they have challenged our ideals and work ethics and exposed our people, our governments whom we looked upon as our saviours, our heroes. We, as mute spectators, aren't left much far behind in our contribution to the chaos. We worship them at our convenience and we also go hammer and tongs when it suits us. 'Yeh public hain, sab jaanti hain' is the most clever sentence aimed at fooling the public itself. We think we matter even when we know we don't. India and Indians are incredibly incredible indeed.
As for the actual 'Incredible India' campaign carried out by our Tourism Ministry, you just need to google to find out the rapes per month of foreign nationals that take place on Goa's beaches and I bet you will hate that term for the rest of your lives. Btw, Goa is the smallest state of our Incredible India.