Sunday, June 29, 2008


I must confess that I have a fascination for travelling. More often than not, I get excited by prospects of traveling - not just by seeing new places at the destination, but also by the journey with train journeys being my favourite. It gives me immense pleasure to see towns and cities pass by, observe people at different places, to just get a feel of places as they come and go by! As a child I used to know many trivial details about the routes I was travelling on and nearby routes and trust me, it was extremely interesting, and it keeps me interested even today!

Recently, while travelling in Delhi, I suddenly decided to take a longer route to my destination, which required to travel on metro train in all three different lines, with 2-3 stations in each line. I had no deadlines, no pressures to reach somewhere. And it was wonderful. Passing through CP, Chandini Chowk, Old Delhi - the places about which we have been hearing since childhood.

One way of looking at it can be kind of a chore. The other way is enjoying the subtleties of a seemingly boring task. at times, it seems quite surprising that there are such trivial things in this world which can fascinate us and leave us mesmerized- it can be anything ranging from sound of a river to the way the parallel railway tracks seem to meet at the horizon, but never actually meeting to things like croaking of an insect

I have a strong fascination for roaming randomly, without a particular destination in mind. There have been times when I just took out my bike and started roaming. But this has sadly, been quite limited. Maybe, I can explore few more places in near future, or just enjoy the ride without worrying about the places. One of the wishes I have (seemingly unreasonable) is to start travelling without a particular destination in mind, deciding upon destinations on impulse and just keep on exploring - not something like Forrest Gump who kept on running for 3 years, but maybe, just for few days.

I once saw in a movie - "If you want to see real India, travel in second class compartment of train, travel in buses, observe the people". Going by this parameter, I have seen a very minuscule part of India, and may see some more in next few months, but in long run I wish to explore these subtleties and differences.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Fidayeen

He read the first page of the newspaper carefully. Maybe, there was some news he could help the Anti-Terrorist Squad with. It carried the news of 14 people being killed in a suicide terrorist strike. "May allah guide them and show them the right path", he prayed silently. His memory went back few years in time, litte more than 3 years when he was handpicked to be a fidayeen in the 'holy battle' as the chief called it.

He had recieved 8 months of intensive training. He knew how to operate the most complex of weapons. That was after he was picked from an elementary school and groomed for years together. But such training was essential. After all, the job he was destined to do was not ordinary. He was supposed to be a suicide bomber in an important rally of a prominant national leader. He had to send the message loud and clear to the top bosses in the country. He was one of the most trusted ones of the chief, who was in charge of overseeing all the activities in the region.

The bomb had been perfectly planted. It was planted a day in advance when people would have been unsuspecting. The trigger was a cell phone. Just a press of the dial button on the phone would do the job. The expected impact was in the 50 meter radius. That would mean 100-150 people would be killed including the leader. Maybe, the top bosses in th country would hear then. If not, the chief would have something bigger in store, though he may not be there to see it happen. But he, as a soldier in the battle was more than elated on being a shaheed.

He did the last Namaz of his life, as the chief had instructed him. He reached the rally well in time to assess the situation for half an hour before pressing the 'dial' key from his cellphone. The time approached. But he was calm. He was giving qurbaani after all. The thought of hundereds of innocents being killed did not come to his mind. He had been sufficiently brainwashed by the local Mullah and the chief. He was mentally prepared for the immense responsibility, and to get the great honour he deserved. He intended to hear the sound of the blast. The last time he would ever hear before becoming a fidayeen.

The countdown began -




He headed to press that green button on the cell phone when for some unexplained reason the mobile switched off. The mission had failed. Little did he realize that he had forgotten to charge his cell phone and the battery had gone off. He thought it was Allah's way of telling him that he was wrong, his patch was wrong, things taught to him were wrong, and the mullah who led him to believe the path what people called terrorism was wrong. It was evil. A sin. Then he walked away from the place before the chief could reach him, and went to an unknown place to live a completely new life, a life of anonymity but honorable in his own eyes.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


Recently during a random TV channel browsing session I came across a show in NDTV dedicated to movie GUNDA, a B-Grade masterpiece which has gained a stature of gigantic proportions.Many of us might not haver heard of the movie, but of the rest I assume most of them might have seen the movie, and a substantial proportion would have enjoyed it!! It is a kind of movie that fits into the definition of a cult classic!!

The Orkut community of the IMDB 8.7/10 rated Gunda has thousands of fans, most of them can be classified under category of 'die-hard fans'. This movie has got a huge viewer base in engineering collecges and B-schools, and there are people whio consider your life as futile and worthless if you haven't seen this epic masterpiece.
And there are considerable chances that the movie might make to the list of 50 all time greats, if there are enough votes keeping its ratings at the same level!!

This Kanti Shah directed movie has the one and only Mithunda (fondly called as Prabhuji) in its lead role, (which can be called role of a lifetime) who plays a robinhood-type revenge seeking coolie in some airport/ shipyard/ random roads, and takes on the evil goons who are menace to society, who have murdered his father, who don't allow people to live peacefully.
The scenes in the movie include random murders and rapes on random roads, airports, dockyards each underscored by some poetic verses, exactly in same poetic manner in which the charaters introduce themselves. But the element of film making that rules the roost are the dialogues which are out of the world. Just check the Gunda fan club on Orkut to have a look. It is a blashphemy to post them on lesser things like blogs.
There is Bulla, there is Ibu Hatela, Potey and many other characters with names which can be described in range of adjectives from crazy to unmentionable!

There are some movies which are so bad that you enjoy it, and in that genre Gunda undoubtedly takes the cake.
Hats off to Kanti shah and Mithunda combo !

Saturday, June 14, 2008

ConneXions unlimited

PJ -> Why is telecom industry booming in India ?
Reason--> People here love to have and flaunt connections


"Jugaad is the 57th art" - SS Shinde at his satirical best

"Disgusting! This is the only thing I hate about our country... greased palms shaking hands with lack of integrity" - A comment on one of the posts in my blog


Connections - Many of us around the world love to flaunt it. Most of us wouldn't mind using it. We Indians love to flaunt it and often consider it as a essential tool to accomplish tasks of varying magnitude. Many of us work in day in and day out in order to earn connections. 'Networking' - a tool often used in achieving something is a milder form of connection, for the latter is the holy grail that makes you do with impunity what the lesser mortals think is sinful.

There are often sons and daughers of powerful officials, bhais and bhateejas of a powerful minister, friends of sons of sister's uncle-in law of supporters of the high and mighty. chamchas of local MLAs and proteges of a small time goon. Thos who are not, often they yearn for some, for that extra speed to be on the expressway to success!

... And having recently landed at Delhi and having just a casual glance is giving me insights on one of the major pillars for support and success in the unforgiving and the fastpaced world where you need to create an ilusion of success to survive - Have your connections right!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Snaps from The Himalayas

Some glimpses of one of the best landscapes in the country. Why long for Alps when our own old, enigmatic yet beautiful Himalayas provide such magnificent and picturesque sceneries!!

Have a look.


Location - Garhwal Region, Himalayas which lie in the state of Uttrakhand.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

The winning shot

3 runs required of 1 ball, the scorecard said.

It was the final of a small cricket tournament in the locality. Lots were at stake for 14 year old Sonu, as he was popularly called. His performance in the tournament could be best described as mediocre. He had never been above average in studies, extra curricular activities and even sports. No one ever praised him for he hardly did anything praiseworthy. Not even little encouragement came his way. He always wondered what was his fault. After all, he was not that bad either. But that was the way it always was.

He never desired much. But like all, he wished to be admired, praised, be like others who were so much liked. Today was the day to prove his worth; to make the world sit and take notice of him. One good hit over the boundary rope and he would be a instant hero. A hero in eyes of his friends, teachers, all uncles and aunts and most importantly his parents, who were somehow never satisfied with his performance.

The bowler came all charged charged up as if he would uproot al the three stumps. Sonu had prayers in his lips. A bit of nervousness creeped in. The same kind of nervousness which caused the earlier batsman to panic and lose his wicket. But, if he lost cool this time then it would be all over. This was his only chance. But what would happen next? Maybe he would miss the ball and it would go crashing into the stumps. Maybe he would faint before the bowler has bowled. He was surrounded by all kinds of emotions ranging from excitement to nervousness to fear of the worst kind.

The ball his his bat and he slogged it using full might he could. The ball hit the edge and flew high up in the sky. Maybe it would sail safely across the third man and cross the boundary rope. Naah! It wasn't going that far. Maybe it would fall inside. Damn! There was a fielder moving towards it. Maybe he would be out ... Caught. Sonu could see the ball landing into hands of Ravi. He wouldn't drop the catch. They were arch rivals. And Ravi was the best fielder in the town. Meanwhile, he started running for the second run. And without seeing where the ball has landed, he would run for the third run.

The ball landed into Ravi's hands ... and came out of it. He had dropped the catch. It was a tough chance as there was a lot of running to do. But as they say, fortune favors the brave! With some luck on his side, Sonu had won the match. His teammates carried him on their shoulders. He completed the victory lap on their shoulders. It was a moment of great glory. It seemed to be the best day of his life. Maybe, it would be a new beginning for him. Maybe it would silence all his critics for few days, or few weeks or even ... forever.