Sunday, January 3, 2016

The (In)Tolerant Indian

“Tolerance is giving to every other human being every right that you claim for yourself.”

-    Robert Green Ingersoll

Apologies for the highly clich├ęd title but you know as Ravi Shastri says, “That’s exactly what the doctor ordered!”

Rising intolerance, intolerance over comments on rising intolerance, intolerance of intolerant people opposing comments on people who feel intolerance is rising…phew! Officially the confusion in India over this ‘intolerance’ issue has reached ‘Nolanesque’ proportions. Someone on Twitter rightly branded this whole situation as ‘Intoleranception’!  Poetically there is a ‘Nolan’ somewhere within ‘Intoleranception’. 

Ok, now I am digressing. Hope you show some tolerance and continue reading….

Is there some iota of truth over this intolerance debate? Are we really intolerant? Or have we always been like this? My personal opinion…yes we always were intolerant and it’s not a trait that we are proud of. But, contrary to what most feel, I can see Indians becoming more and more ‘tolerant’ over the years. Allow me to explain.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Arrive. Protest. Adjourn. Leave. Repeat!

Firstly I would like to begin by offering my condolences to the entire nation on the loss of our former President, an impeccable scientist and more importantly a fine human being - Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. This most certainly is the end of an era. Among the scores of tributes and anecdotal articles on Dr. Kalam over the last few days, I came across a particular one mentioning his last proposed assignment to IIM Shillong students on ‘Finding innovative solutions to end Parliament disruptions’.
Off late an ‘Operational Parliament’ has become quite comparable to ‘Tolerance on Social Media’ – both on the verge of non-existence! This issue of a non-functioning Parliament has been bothering most of us over the last year and half. Both political parties, the one heading current government as well as the opposition, are culprits equally. The situation has reached such chronic proportions that another Anna Hazare campaign followed by a new political party might soon be on its way. Like many of us, all I have done is expressed my outrage on Twitter. But the aforementioned article got me thinking!
Is there an elixir that can make our honourable Members of Parliament (MP) stay inside the Parliament hall for more than 15 mins, before they hear the magic word ‘adjourned’ and go back to their homes enjoying their paid holidays?  Surely the concept of ‘doing-the-job-you-are-paid-for’ is not rocket science for our MPs to comprehend.
Sloganeering & creating ruckus in the Parliament hall has become like the prayer we used to sing before start of school proceedings – a morning habit! Overweight MPs sprinting to the well of the Parliament hall, at a speed that would even leave Usain Bolt a little overwhelmed, has now become a regular morning exercise. These daily sprints & vocal exercises are making our MPs fitter but it’s the nation that is suffering! Here are my two cents of the things we can try to keep them at work:

Friday, May 31, 2013

BCCI - The Parliament of cricket!

Q: If a group of owls is called ‘Parliament’ (very apt name, isn’t it?), then what do you call a host of issues?


Don’t be surprised by that! BCCI has found itself entangled in countless issues - not for the first time and surely not the last.

When it comes to cricket…we are as passionate as a politician is for his kursi….and as obsessed as the opposition party is for disrupting Parliament sessions even if a Congress MP sneezes. And hence the latest imbroglio that Indian cricket finds itself is all the more frustrating and saddening! The credibility of the game is at stake and this has left all devotees of this religion called ‘Cricket’ with a deep sense of displeasure. All thanks to the appointed priests (read as BCCI). It’s not that Indian cricket hasn’t witnessed a deeper crisis or that it cannot recuperate from this, but just the sheer audacity of the administrators to cover-up the real issues is unnerving.

The real issue is that – we have a sports committee that is dictatorial (and we call ourselves a democracy), headed by the King of ‘conflict of interests’, backed by board full of politicians; just because they have a bright chance of being elected the next beneficiary and have a shot at minting money at the behest of the sport and its fans.

To explain that long sentence, here’s a blow by blow account of what has transpired in last few days…...

It started with the arrest of 3 Rajasthan Royal players accused of spot fixing and betting, at the fag-end of what has been the best IPL till date in terms of cricket. Immediately after, the BCCI Chairman (Please note, not the IPL Commissioner) addresses the media and claims that the ‘rotten eggs’ spoiling the party have been caught and the rest of the egg basket is still fresh and uninfected.

Little did he know that the poultry caretaker (India’s second most famous son-in-law after Robert Vadra and CSK owner - Mr. Meiyappan) is also infected by the same disease. The arrest of Mr. Gurunath Meiyappan had implications of possible termination of the most consistent IPL franchise and more importantly the danger of losing all the investment that India Cements made for past 6 years. Ironically, the head of this India Cements is the poultry farm manager (Mr. Srinivasan) and also cannot leave the caretaker to die as he is his son-in law. 

Saturday, September 1, 2012

What do I write about?

It’s been quite a while I haven’t put words to Word (Microsoft word I mean...Ahem). I feel I am facing one of those blogger’s block! Hands are itching to pen thoughts but paucity of interesting topics holds me back. I had even thought of updating my Facebook status message as

“Gosh! I haven’t been writing in a long time!”

Then sanity prevailed as I realized it would encourage my wife updating the same Facebook (FB) status by replacing the word ‘writing’ with ‘shopping ‘ (Believe me both these messages connote the same set of emotions within me and my wife respectively :P). As it is now-a-days, our FB status message gets lost on our wall very easily between a hoard of pictures claiming to either make you laugh or bring you good luck by sharing them. Metaphorically, status messages tend to visibly cling on your wall only as far as Rohit Sharma seems to stick on the pitch these days!  

Nevertheless, let me explore if there is anything interesting happening around us these days….!

Where do I start?

Politics? Mmmmm…ok here we go...

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Alumni Meet blues

I managed to hit the ground running (quite literally) as I pounced at Andheri station well before the train screeched to a halt (in exemplary Mumbai fashion).

Destination: My first ever Alumni meet after post graduation ;)

I have witnessed alumni meets during my college and always had a hidden fear of speaking up on these occasions and sharing experiences. I have seen people doing wonderfully well in such impromptu pep-talk and I was fully aware & confident that I would fail miserably in case such a opportunity beckons me ;) I would rather be enclosed in Big Boss’s house along with Dolly Bindra and Pooja Missra than a few minutes of gyan-sharing with my fellow alumni’s. At least I have a chance of surviving the former.  Nevertheless, here I am waiting for my friend to pick me up when I began to think of my college days; which was incidentally my first foray into the perils and luxuries of a hostel life…..

I remember the first day, accompanied by my parents, being absolutely zapped at the infrastructure set up of my alma mater. I completed all the government-office-like formalities and set along to see my room. My to-be roommates and their parents were already present there scrutinizing every nook and corner of the room as if to find some leads to a murder that had just taken place in the room……and the moment I entered the room…they stared at me initially and then smiled gently as if to say that they have found the one responsible for the aforesaid murder ;).

Monday, March 19, 2012

The Perfect Exemplar

There are artists that compel you to sit back and enjoy their artistry and then there are eager beaver’s who induce you to stand up and applaud. There are people who are born talented & gifted and then there are people who work that tad bit extra to maximize their talent. 

There is Sachin Tendulkar and then there is a Rahul Dravid

The Wall and the God!

Sachin as we all know is flamboyant, classy and carries our sky soaring expectations day in and day out! He is like an immensely talented painter who whips confident brush strokes on paper effortlessly with absolutely impeccable colour schemes. Dravid on the other hand ingrains a workman like demeanor. He is akin to a sculptor who toils hard and meticulously carves out finer edges of the statue, with great finesse. He knows that his job is not as easy as a painter; nevertheless both seem to produce masterpieces of similar eminence! 

If Sachin is ‘God’ then watching Dravid play is the closest it can get to ‘divinity’! 

Friday, January 13, 2012

Attitude vs. Humility

The entire audience was giving a rousing round of applause...that is when I suddenly realized that it was the end of the speech. What a riveting speech it was..!! It certainly tickled my grey cells and made me think....not about what he was speaking but about the kind of personalities that exists in the delightful ....and yet so very effective! It was the inauguration of Entrepreneurship Cell (E-Cell) at my college and we had invited two eminent business personalities that had chucked their cosy careers to pursue their own enterprises and were very successful in their endeavour.

The first one had a royal air about him. He had a lot of attitude in him and spoke very enthusiastically. He did not mince words and was very harsh while explaining the hardships he had to face while he started his business. If at all there was a thin line between attitude and arrogance....that guy was certainly treading on it. The way he spoke gave me an impression that he has certainly used his attitude to his advantage and channelized his vigour in the right direction. I usually hate people with attitude because of all the people I have met they generally exhibit the negative implications of the word called ‘attitude’.  But this guy certainly made me change my perspective.

The next person to speak on the dais was an antithesis. He was absolutely ice cool and very composed. The first few sentences he spoke put the audience completely at ease and it was good enough to break the ice between him and the audience. The person was extremely humble and absolutely unpretentious. He managed to show us a completely different side of the hardships he had to face. He mentioned about the difficulties of starting an entrepreneurial venture which were pretty much in sync with the first speaker but he did it in such a manner that they appeared as challenges and which could be dealt with. At some points he used to contradict to the first speaker but he made sure that he puts his points across quite adeptly and at the same time showing respect to the other person’s view.

While the speech was going on I was amazed at the personality differentiations of both individuals. One very egoistic (though with a positive connotation) and the other very humble and yet both being so effective. Which one would I prefer...???