Monday, April 26, 2010

Kill IPL !

"An embattled IPL commissioner Lalit Modi refused on Saturday to resign from his post and dared BCCI to sack him at Monday's IPL governing council meeting. While the BCCI brass went into huddle to chalk out a strategy to remove him,Mr.Modi showed no signs of backin down"--The Hindu

Two weeks after setting in motion a sequence of events which would lead to the resignation of the man who is no stranger to controversies,Mr. Shashi Tharoor , Lalit Modi himself finds in troubled waters.Such is the impact of introdouction of Kerala team.  And here am thinking that malayalees have no role to play in IPL!!

For the past three days, IPL controversy has occupied the front page of all major news papers except TOI which chooses to put some sex scandal and pictures of bikini babes instead!Thats what i like about the TOI :-).

From allegations of rigging in the team allotment process to match-fixing, IPL seems to be unfolding enough melodrama to put Kavitha Kapoor's saaas-bahu soaps to shame. And its just started!

As a person who was very passionate about his cricket in his teens, i ve come to understand my cricket and hence  appreciate the beauty of a classic stroke play.For me batting is a bit more than bang bang.
In a 50 over match, you need to save your wicket and cannot throw your bat just at anything. Thats when the batsman's true skills are tested. In IPL, you just need to be bothered about 20 overs, which means there isnt a lot of need to save your wickets. Its just hit as much as you can or die doing so.

Thats not the only reason why don't like IPL.i dont feel the same passion seeing IPL that i get when i see India taking on Australia(forget Pakistanis, Australians are our new enemies!).

Sony's IPL campaign showed picking up sides in IPL as trendy and soon people started choosing their teams for support. The element of glamor involved also played its part in making the IPL popular. But do my hairs stand up like it does when Sachin faces Shoaib....naaaaaaaaaaaaah!!! I am a big time Sachin fan and hence i support MI, but even when they lose, i dont get that dejected feeling that i get when India loses to Australia. The only time i clapped hard was when Bhajji slapped Sreesanth! He long deserved one :-) didn't he?

And the fuss about IPL being a wonderful concept and a unique business model is again baseless.
It was ICL that came up with this idea in the first place. If not for BCCI's arm twisting and cut throat techniques to establish monopoly, IPL might have been a different story altogether. They didnt follow ethics of fair competition from day 1, but now when Shashi Tharoor come gate crashing to Modi's party and demanded that he give his state an IPL team, Modi's plans of making a few extra bucks for himself by allotting the ownership of the new teams to a premier industrial house of the country took a beating. An outraged Modi questioned the Tharoor's ethics, which triggered a chain of events which led Tharoor to resign from his ministerial post.

At least now he can tweet in peace!!

Little did Modi know that, his actions were to backfire on him sooner than he anticipated.Now he is on the brink of losing his job as IPL commissioner, if he hasnt already. And now BCCI is going to setup all kinds of enquiry commissions that you can possibly imagine (and some that you cant possibly imagine :-) ) against him. Poor Modi! Is this what you call "apne pairon pe khuladi maarna" ?

People who live in glass houses shouldnt throw stones at others.

Kapil Dev and the entire ICL team would be watching the events with a lot of interest.And why not,BCCI issued threats of bans and used its influence with the cricket boards of friendly countries to burn down ICL to ground. They should have something to cheer about after all.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

A read from Neo's blog! Awesome!!!

Why it is meaningless to say you’re proud to be an Indian

“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” – Barack Obama.

“More than you know it I’m aware,
Of this connection that we share.
I know it seems like sometimes I don’t care,
But you are the colors that I wear” – “3 AM”, Poets of the Fall.

“I’m proud to be an Indian ” – Twitterer, January 26th, 2010.

“You were an Indian in America, and now you’re an American in India. Always confused.” – Neo’s Uncle Abhay on Neo, January 26th 2010.

“What time is Lost?” – Neo, moments ago.


On Republic Day, Uncle Abhay kept trying to get Neo to enjoy the parade, but Neo was more interested in spending quality time with his Google Reader, podcasts and wine – only two things were “dry” on Republic Day at Neoville: the municipal water supply, and Abhay’s throat because he couldn’t stop talking.

Uncle Abhay finally gave up: “Are you even an Indian? What the hell are you doing in India? Why did you come here? Aren’t you proud of being an Indian?”.


Neo has plenty of time to listen to Raga Marwa, or wait for his turn at the traffic light, but he has no time to waste watching parades, waving the flag of any country, chanting slogans or reading @nevervotes92’s tweets on how he’s proud of being an Indian. Saying that you are proud of being an Indian isn’t much different than saying you’re proud to be born on a Monday – being an Indian is just a fact, not an achievement to be proud of. Would you be less proud if you were born Romanian, or on a Tuesday ? You could say you’re lucky to be an Indian – millions of Bangladeshis would agree.

The ridiculously sloganeered and caricatured shows of patriotism that occur in India (and every other country) on “national holidays” are an insult to the intelligence of its citizens. What happened to the thoughtful, deep India ? When did we choose gaudy weddings over happy marriages, not-stalgia and past glory over reality, rutty careers over our real aspirations, pretentious religious ceremonies over what they actually mean, deep-fried over grilled, elder-worship over thinking for ourselves, the display of money over tastefulness and rote-memorized slogans over an intuitive understanding of civic duty ? You can get a kid to recite “Mera Bharat Mahan” or the sugary-sweet “All Indians are my brother and sisters” until his face is blue, but he’s still not going to stop throwing his fucking candy wrapper on the road until a parent teaches him to.

And have you noticed ? Around the world, the more pathetic the condition of its citizens, the grander and more pretentious are the patriotic celebrations and the forced, fake statements of pride. If the Martians were watching the parades on TV, they’d think North Korea was the leader of the world. The lipstick on a prostitute gets more garishly red as dawn approaches, or as the drugs wear off.

A few of Neo’s family members and friends serve (proudly) in the Indian armed forces. None of them are impressed by the Facebook status updates, tweets and blog posts proclaiming pride for India on national holidays or disasters. This Republic day, Neo’s friend said “We serve in the army so the rest of you motherfuckers can be safe and change India, not so you can sit around forwarding patriotic songs and feel happy.”

How about we replace all the parades, speeches and sloganeering with a simple ceremony that honors the men and women who would run towards a gunshot rather than away from it ? The ceremony can end in a simple wish – “we honor the Indians who died for our country this year, and we hope our enemies will soon have the opportunity to die in very large numbers for their country.”

Hello, and welcome to Neo’s blog. He is Indian, and he’s proud of many things. But he’s not proud to be an Indian. He just is an Indian.
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Thursday, April 8, 2010

Random Thoughts:State of journalism in our country!

Past few days news papers have been buzzing with Shoaib-Sania marriage. To add more fuel, Mr. Thackarey, the self declared guardian of "Bharatiyatha" went down to threaten Sania for falling in love in with a Pakistani. Man, this guy comes right out of cartoon network!!

A veteran journalist and a self proclaimed "Mr.Right" tweets about professional ethics of a journalist when he sees Shoaib Sania saga in the front pages of all major newspapers. And what does his channel do, they show live pictures of NSG commandos landing on the Nariman house.In his defense,he asserts that Govt. must have restricted them. There is no denying the fact the govt. and the army should have cordoned off the area, but does it take anything more than pure common sense to understand that showing live pictures of military operation can end up in a disaster? Its so obvious,that you have to be Rajdeep Sardesai not to have  foreseen that!! Did he forget the term 'collective responsibility' which he uses so often while he grills the top notch politicians of the country.No intentions of finger pointing at the gentleman, just wanted to say , if you cant do things right, go easy on preaching!

The media, in the present day, is just a medium to sell whats hot! Open up the middle page of the very famous TOI and there wont be a day when you wont see a bikini clad model there.There may not be anything wrong with that, but do you have to go to that level to increase your circulation. And we were the ones who screamed when FTV was launched in India.

Headlines Today is more about whats happening in reality shows. They seem to be more bothered about Shweta Tiwari wore in "Mujhe Jungle se bachao" or how "Rakhi ka swayamvar" is shaping up. Aaj Tak holds its own survey and always rates itself as the no.1 news channel. They seem to have taken a lesson from a very famous "management guru" who also runs a business school which also rates itself as better than the IIMs :-)

There was this incident when one of the very famous lady journalists in the present day, ventured into Kargil to show the world what women are capable of ! And she did show what she was capable of. Two jawans lost their life, when she flashed her camera at Pakistani forces, disclosing their position and making them a clean sitting duck. And God, did we see any remorse from her.

More surprisingly, this issue was never given due importance by the media.Did we see a discussion on "Big Fight" or "We, the people" whether journalists should be allowed on war front or not?
You spare nobody, but when its cases of  lapses on your own side,you play it down! How easy!

Quite recently, i saw this program 'Being a Muslim' on one of the premier news channels. They showed how they are the only ones in the entire country who treat muslims as our fellow brothers and the rest all of us working for their annihilation.I feel that particular feature would have done more good for to the terror recruiters than to anyone else.

There is no denying the fact that muslims do at times get subjected to stringent security checks. But we need to be aware of the fact that this is more required to in national interest and not aimed at creating a divide. In fact this is eliminate those who are hellbent on creating a divide. If we want to get away with stringent checks, we should make it a point that we don't blame the security agencies with terms "Intelligence failure" which is first thing the common man in the street speaks of, should he hears about a bomb blast. How easily we ignore how many of 26/11 s were avoided and nipped in the bud by our good guys. But that never seem to excite the  media nor the general public. .

'Tehelka tapes' were undoubtedly an important chapter in the history of Indian journalism. It showed the difference the media can make when it comes to exposing corruption to the public. Since then numerous sting operations have been undertaken, some genuine and some not so genuine ones. One good thing about the sting operation is that it brings about instant response. Today sting operations have also turned spicy! No am not referring to "Emotional Atyachar"!! Out of the 10 sting operations carried today, 6 are  to expose sex scandals. Not that these guys feel a lot for morality, its just it adds up more masala, more audience and hence a better TRP rating. Mission accomplished!!

The latest figure to be caught with his pants down was none other 'Baba Nithayananda'! Unlike all other times when the feeling was more of outrage, i felt rather amused by this episode. I mean the people who trusted this Godman or any other Godman for that reason, didn't deserve anything better. I feel pity for the "bhakts" but you asked for it, and so you got it! Nobody to blame.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Random thoughts on religion!!

Spirtuality is all about connecting to God and how do u do that? Simple, by connecting to your ownself. So do have to be in saffron and chant mantras to do that? No. Then why do people do that?

All religions have symbols,practices and beliefs. How did these beliefs come into existence. Once upon a time, there were so very intelligent people who found the path to connect to God. Like true scholars, they wanted other men also to discover this secret of life and attain moksha. When i say moksha, i donot mean anything thats after your death. You attain moksha when you discover the purpose of your life.

Since these people found that the common folks didnt have the bandwidth to understand their teachings, they tried to explain it to people by telling them a story.Its like your physics teacher explaining you nuclear reacton by linking the neutrons to Arjun's arrow which would multiply over the flight to its target. And the story covered all aspects of life. It stressed on all the values that all of must have heard from so many priests and swamys. Its a waste of html space to list them here.

And like the students we were, instead of understanding the core concept of God, the disciples of these great men gave more importance to the story and its characters. And so Ram,Allah,Jesus came into existence. The scholars , created characters in a way that ordinary people would relate them to their own local environment. To make it easy, they wrote the so called holy books. And thus, Quran,Geetha ,Bible and more holy scriptures came into existence.

There is always some essence of knowledge lost when you pass it to the next generation. Its like the game thats played most of the personality development classes, the instructor lines up people in a line and to the person standing first, he would whisper a message in his ears and would ask him to pass it down the queue in a similar fashion. The last person in the queue says the message loud and more often than not, its completely different from the original message.

Similarly generations later, the original message the true scholars had intended to pass on somewhere got lost and a completely different set of concepts emerged. The dumb disciples started respecting the scriptures,the characters and all the symbols that they thought identified them while completely ignoring the core message which the scholars had intended to deliver. The religion united people and with it came a false pride which seeked to destroy anyone who would question their practices. Soon there was a strong sense of competition between religions with their heads taking a dig at each other's traditions. Heads ordered,the disciples
obeyed and nobody dared to question.This happens to a lot of extent in the present age also.

As Imeperialism started showing its ugly side, the so called disciples took up a mission on civilzing people by passing on their misunderstood values and beliefs to the so called 'barabaric tribes' across continents. These barbarians on the other hand were more civilized as they had learnt to respect nature and to live in harmony with it where as the so called reformists were going on complicating their environment in attempt to make their life easy and in the process ended making it even more complicated. Rightly said in the movie "Gods must be crazy" as a result of that his children are sentenced to spend more than a decade in school and
college just to learn how to survive in the complexity.

Religion was no more about connecting god. It was now more about who dominated. The think tanks now spent more time on how to get people from other religions to to accept theirs and they didnt hesitate to use all possible means to do so.

And this continues till date.

Pray before you sleep, do what u feel is right and try not to hurt anyone, unless its a case of your own survival. I guess thats all u need to be spiritual. Saffron is just a colour and so is green and white. Bothering about them is just a waste of time. I d rather blog than thinking about it!!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

A post from Prof. Ray Titus sir's blog.

'There are also other concerns expressed by academics. Will teachers flee for greener pastures? Will quality higher education become the exclusive privilege of the rich? Surely, these questions must be reflected upon before Sibal pushes through his reforms.'

I picked that out of an Outlook article on the Foreign universities Bill.

I wonder who these academics are who've expressed such concerns. May I venture to say, despite having raised 'pertinent' questions, the questions are also a reflection of their lack of understanding of the world of business.

Consider the questions.

The first one's about academics fleeing for greener pastures. I wish the academic who raised this question knew how factors of production behave in markets that allow for mobility. In such markets, factors go to wherever the returns are greater. For example, if you had capital to invest where would you consign it to? Into a venture that gives greater or lower returns? Labour too like capital, will seek those engagements that pay better. Of course, pay may not be the only consideration. But whatever the considerations are, labour will engage with those activities and institutions where it believes its returns will be enhanced.

The second question's about quality education being the exclusive privilege of the rich. The answer's pretty simple. That will depend on what the giver of that quality education is going to price it at. If it's going to be a premium price, of course it will be accessible solely to the rich. But lets assume there are stiff admission criterion set. The entry then will be available to the rich but intelligent ones. Let's again assume the banking industry is willing to finance studies in such institutions knowing fully well their graduates will be able to secure jobs that can pay back the education loan taken. Then maybe the middle class, intelligent kid who's taken a loan may also find access.

I'd recommend minimum sentiments when it comes to debating the Foreign universities bill, because sentiment clogs up rational thinking. Foreign universities aren't and mustn't be about anything other than more institutions that sell education services in this sector. The fallout of which is buyers will benefit, despite there being few.

Remember, the Blackberry is not accessible to all because of its pricing. But that's no reason for it not be sold. If some can buy the Blackberry, congratulations, if some can't, that's okay. Because they've got other basic mobile phone models they can buy from. Insisting Blackberry be available to all or not be available at all is simply stupid.
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I always thought that i would keep this blog strictly non personal. And i wouldn't have any acquaintance know about this. May be it was because i was too shy to share my thoughts.

And then i stared following J. Thanks to her, i now realize and most important, i accept that blogging isn't for others to read.

Its more for our own self. And now i know the reason, why even i despite repeated attempts to control personal stuff getting to HTML format, i unknowingly write something out of my own personal space!!

Back in my previous city, where i was staying for past two years, i would never find time to blog. May be its because there were so many other things to do. And now here, i ve kinda become a regular blogger,completely unmindful of the potential psychological torture, the readers might just be subjected to! And that's may be because there s nothing else for me to do!

To some extent, i believe solitude is an important part of life, of course everything depends on how you approach it. Its good way to relax your mind and soul and to do a bit of self discovery. Its time to go back rediscover all those dreams you had nipped in the bud for all sorts of reasons. And I ve just begun to realize that!