Thursday, January 31, 2013

Fiction-55: Envious Venom

It was the day his life was rewritten.

He returned home brightly from his first book’s success party after signing and shaking hands with his numerous followers.His right thumb was stinging, he ignored. 

As he removed his coat, a little scroll fell off his pocket.He opened the scroll. 
“Welcome to AIDS”, it said.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Fiction-55: The cupid diary

Their relationship was on a knife-edge until one day when she found his diary lying under his table while dusting their bedroom. She leafed to the latest entry.

“…I cannot afford to lose her. I still love her.”
Reading this, with tears of bliss, she paced and embraced him.

To himself, he winked, “Plan successful.”

Fiction-55: Last Wish

In his last moments, the old man only expected one last call from his ignorant NRI son. As a father, he fulfilled all his demands.

In return, he received only tyranny.

The phone astonishingly rang beside his pillow.
“Hello! Customer, our new tariff plans…”
a voice said.

With unfulfilled wish, the old man stopped breathing. 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Haiku: Hoaxed Heroes

Hello Reader,
Here is a Haiku dedicated to the all the soldiers, the true patriots who sacrificed their lives for their country just because of some political divides.

Camouflaged lions,

Victims of wanton massacre,

peddled in auction.


Monday, January 28, 2013

Fiction-55: Language lies

His family always antagonized him for not speaking his mother tongue. He felt awkward conversing in it. As a child, he used to speak but as he grew up in North India, he lost the habit.

On the day of his job recruitment, the interviewer asked, "Telugu occhuna?"

"Occhunu, sir", he lied.
He got the job.

*occhuna is do you know?
*occhunu is I know.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Blog day out

Hello Reader, 

The struggle (you can skip this part if you want)

It was a sunny morning, I woke up, stretched my arms and rubbed my eyes like any usual day. Then there was a sudden realization that there's an IndiBlogger meet today! I checked the time, it was 11 already. Then my thought process began, to go or not to go. The process took time as I am a child born in the era of early Pentium processors. So, after an hour or so, I decided, remembering the million dollar quotes like "Do not miss any opportunity, son" and started from my college hostel, which is very far (about 35-40 kms), from the venue. I somehow reached a nearby bus stop at 1:30, waited for about half an hour to board a BMTC bus to Majestic. It was already late. It was almost 2:30 when I reached Majestic. From there I took the help of an auto-wala to reach near the race course and then thanks to the auto-wala, who confused me and sent me to some other road. Then, after walking for about 5-10 minutes with the golden Sun smiling brightly on my head, I finally saw a distant board saying 'Fortune', across the road. Oh yes, I cursed my fortune for such an amazing start to the day. I crossed the road and I finally reached the venue: JP fortune park. 

The first Impression

Excited to find the venue, I sprinted through the main gate when the guard stopped me at the gate and I explained to him that I need to go to the IndiBlogger meet and that I am a blogger, not a terrorist so he can let me in. I reached the reception which was completely deserted which made me think if I was in a trap or some kind of conspiracy. It was a sigh of relief when I reached the elevator to find a direction to the 2nd floor. I climbed. I finally opened the door to find the conference hall full of people. I checked the time again, 3 it was. I was about 1.5 hours late but then comparing myself to Indian railways I found myself less guilty. I straight away walked towards the end of the hall, took the last row and sat alone. Then I realized that nobody checked my Identity. So, before someone would kick me out, I peacefully went forward and registered myself, came back and sat.

When I reached, "30 seconds to fame" was going on and was about to end. I saw the bloggers introducing themselves and imitating their favorite characters. I regret reaching late to the event only because of the reason that I didn't get a chance to introduce myself to the blogging crowd. It was really hard to find anybody to talk with as I knew nobody so I kept quite for a very long time. Then there was a small 'quote-matching' game where I never found my match. The part of my quote said "Every saint has...". I roamed around the hall, screaming "Every saint has...anybody?" but couldn't find my match. So I ended up finishing the quote myself with "Every saint has a dirty secret". I saw people getting the goodies on their win.
Like an introvert, I went back and sat in the last row as the HP person spoke about the agenda on "being original". After the speech, there was food. Free, of course. In a very civic way, people formed a queue to hog in, suppressing their desire to attack on food. (pun intended) I took my half and roamed around looking at random people, trying to 
eavesdrop. "Oh! I am your regular reader...", "ya, that travel blog is mine...", "Alleppy! isn't that the place with boat houses..?", "arts and literature..hmm...ya..", "is that beautiful child yours..?", "Marketing is very important..", "Harry Potter is real..." blah-blah...

After the interval

After the 20 minute break, the show resumed with another game where we had to form a group of 15 and mime act a given book title. Now, I had a chance to meet some new people. As I hunted to find a group, a voice from behind called me to join their group. We named it "Original Photocopy" and we got to enact "The Jungle Book". And in 5 minutes we decided the roles and the act. I got the role of a book reader who reads the "Jungle book" and visualizes the story as the characters, the animals and Mowgli come upon the stage and do the rest of the wild-act.
Now, that was fun until the results were announced. There was first, second and worst place. We won none.
After this act, there was a small question-answer round, where randomly selected people from the audience had to answer to random questions asked by random people in the audience. Random questions such as "why this kolaveri di?" and "What if Raavan won over Ram?"
The best answers won HP printers and big round of applause.
The end of the show was near and I was almost heart-broke as I couldn't win anything, neither goodies nor Readers when the host Mr. Anoop, blessed us with the most amazing words of the evening,"left-overs can be snatched."
Before I ran to snatch the left overs, there was a all blogger photo click. And with a positive note, a smile and lots of memories, I left the place.

So, an amazing day comes to an end. The moral for me was: Be punctual.
Nevertheless, I hope to find some known faces in the next IndiBlogger Meet.
Until then, keep blogging and inspiring.


A big Thanks to Haper-Collins, HP and IndiBlogger team. 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Naseer Saab

Hello Reader,

The curtains were up and the lights turned off, the chattering of people suddenly stopped and then there was silence throughout the hall as a silent background symphony started. I knew I was excited as I was about to experience my first theatre, “Arms and the Man”, a Broadway play by George Bernard Shaw produced by the Motley theatre. It was a periodic-comedy that takes place in early 1885, during Serbo-Bulgarian War. The stage lights were slowly turned on to focus on and reveal the artists. And then the wait was over as the man took his spot on the centre of stage. The crowd once again came back to life and welcomed him with a big applause.  

Naseeruddin Shah, one of India’s most realistic actors ever was before us. And then, the next 2 hours were bliss to watch my favourite actor live on the stage. Playing a militant from the Bulgarian army, he never once let us disagree that he was out of character. Like the numerous roles he played in the Hindi cinema, this one too left a mark in my mind. My first impression, when I heard the title and genre of the play, was I thought that it would a boring play with elderly audience. I was present there only to watch my favourite actor live. But, I was wrong, there was elderly audience but the play was not at all boring. It kept me hung till the end and the dialogues were extremely hilarious. It was like watching an American Sit-com live. The play ended with Naseer Saab, also the director of this play, giving the credits to his fellow artists who included his own wife Ratna Pathak Shah and Randeep Hooda in the leads. End of the day, Naseer Saab was the winner as he proved the fact that a real actor is the one who needs no retakes unlike in movies. Though I wanted to run to the backstage and meet him personally, I somehow controlled myself with just praising him with applause like all others on the cheaper seats.

The first movie I watched of his was probably Masoom and from then on, I have been an ardent fan of his movies. Maybe, also because I like the kind of parallel movies he does. I started collecting his movies where ever I could get them. Some of my commercial-movie-lover friends started joking around for the kind of movies that I watched and I never bothered to explain them what they were missing. One day, a friend asked me which movie did I watch last night and I said, ‘Parzania’. Of course he had never heard of this movie.

Many such movies like Parzania, Firaaq, Mithya, Maqbool , Being Cyrus, Iqbal etc never got much attention to a bigger audience as much as they deserved it. Of course, they did get much of critical acclamation but got overshadowed by the commercialization and ‘brands’ of Indian cinema.
In his early works, the movies like paar, sparsh, nishant, jaane bhi do yaaron, etc in 1970s did get a lot of attention and he also won filmfare and national awards for them. He also played Mahatma Gandhi in Kamal Hassan's 'Hey Raam' and 'Mirza Ghalib' in Gulzar's biopic TV series.
But maybe, after the beginning of the Bacchan and the Khans-era, parallel-cinema somehow got pushed back and people started liking more of commercial, paisa-vasool, movies and remakes of Hollywood and south.
But then, Naseer Saab didn’t stop, neither did he care about awards or length of the role he was offered. Some of his recent notable cameos were in Khuda kay liye, a Pakistani film where he played a wise maulana, Zindagi na milegi dobara, in which he played an arrogant artist and rajneeti in which he played a vocal activist and many others. Apart from these, his work in ‘a Wednesday’ and ‘Ishqiya’ in recent time were praise-worthy.

Somehow, we are again coming back to the era of intelligent cinema and now audience, despite of categorizing a movie, go and watch even an off-beat flick if it is watch-worthy. I see a hope, in the coming ages, when once again, talent/quality will be counted over ‘Brand names’.


Sunday, January 13, 2013

Haiku: Use Me

Hello Reader,

Hope you like my first Haiku.

Men, for a change, Use Me

and let feminism be virgin,

cries an empty dustbin. 


India v/s Bharat

Hello Reader,

As a child, I always loved the fact that my country has so many names: India, Bharat and Hindustan. But, see what has this lead us to. Recently, we witnessed a variety of comments from a lot of our 'dignitaries' after the 'black dot' day. Here is a small recap of those fallacious comments:

"Don't live in India - Migrate to Bharat instead." - RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat

"Don't eat chowmein." - Khap Panchayat

"Don't go out with boys in the night."  - Abu Azmi of Samajwadi Party

"Don't wear jeans. Fashion is strictly prohibited." - too may people to mention

"Get married when you are 16 years old." - Another Khap Panchayat

"Don't use mobile." - Some Panchayat in UP and Rajasthan

"Don't cross Maryada." - MP Minister Kailash Vijayvargiya

"Say NO to anything remotely connected to western culture." - RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat

"Perform pooja to put 'stars' in correct 'position'." -Chhattisgarh Home Minister Nanki Ram Kanwar

and the most infamous "Call the criminal 'bhaiya' ." - Asaram Bapu 
This is not the first time that such a comment has been turned into a controversy. Even after so many paradigms been set in the past, these people are either dumb or too naive to understand that saying such things are not acceptable to the public. There might be a small group of people who still might second their third-class thoughts.

There is one common statement that we can abstract out of these hilarious ideas of safeguarding women and that is 'westernization of Indian culture'. Whenever they'll feel that they are losing an argument or have nothing else to say to protect themselves against allegations, 'culture' is the only wild card they use. Indian culture becomes greater than the law. If they say Bharat is a better place to live than i'India' (the westernized name), then I would very loudly and clearly like to ask about honor killings, dowry, child marriage, and killing a girl child. Is that what 'Bharat' offers?

Now, girls can't use cell-phones in some areas of UP and Rajasthan just because the Panchayat thinks it is infecting them with western culture. 51,000 /- fine for those who are caught marrying a person from other community. Get the girl married at 16 or even before that.

This is not acceptable. It is not the way 'Bharat' treats its people, its not even how 'India' treats its people. That is more a taliban-way of doing things. And why are these people allowed  to enforce such laws in their communities is still a question. 

The thoughts of these upper-hand people is too senile. They are still living in the same old era. This is one big reason for the Indian villagers being uneducated. When their head himself holds such egregious views for the society, no wonder how he would be misleading his followers and showcasing them a wrong picture of the world outside. And their minds will always see western culture as evil and Indian culture as the hero. They'll never ever learn that every culture has its own meanings and it has noting to do with being legal or illegal. A person wanting to marry outside his community is not what his/her culture supports but it is legal. Using cell-phone or wearing a jeans is not a crime. Crimes that take place have nothing to do with culture. If back then, India was Bharat and everybody so pure that they never crossed limits or committed any sin is noway true.

It was Bharat, where Draupadi was disrobed, Sita crossed the Lakshman Rekha and Kunti had pre-marital relation. These are i
ncidents from 
Ramayana and Mahabharata which are enough to prove them wrong.
We still live in the same old Bharat with a new name. Its about the mind set. With time, comes new trends and one cannot expect other to be living in a generation that is gone. Nobody is disrespecting the Indian culture expect the ones are are preaching it in a wrong way and using it for their own good.  And they deserve to be punished for dichotomy this country.


Thursday, January 10, 2013

No Justice for Martyrdom

Hello Reader,

Every time when this country is awakened, a heavy price is paid. An innocent lamb is sacrificed.
Or is it some kind of tradition which started ages ago? Why do we need such a deadly alarm to wake a sleeping country every time? It happened again, one matchstick burnt a million candles and silently quenched. 

Recently, two of the most gruesome sacrifices were one of that of the girl who got brutally raped in Delhi and second was that of the two Indian army soldiers beheaded by Pakistani army.
Though these alarms were loud enough to go unheard by the disabled common people, who can do nothing but protest around the India gate, it is still unheard at the administrative level. The ones with all the power in their hands are acting paraplegic.

The criminals are not yet punished. It has been about 20 days and they are still looking out for more evidence. The sad thing is that the victim succumbed to her wounds and the criminals are still alive.
Why could the victim, before dying, not able to read a headline saying, ‘Criminals hung till death’?
That would have been a tribute to her sacrifice. On her death, people asked her to rest in peace. But, how could she? After enduring such a painful end, nobody would rest in peace until and unless it is worth it.

Is there no head count of the soldiers who die for our country? No, they are just sent in troops and at the end of the political wars, these men of honor get killed. Then the list of men who die is recorded and they remain in a pile of lost statistics. The brave hearts fight for their country because they respect the land which gave them birth and they respect the former sacrifices made for this country. And now, after their death, the country is mourning. And yet again, our government has no answer for that. The soldiers are used; their sentiments are used in the midst of the political wars.

Just suppose, a minister dies and the next day you read the newspaper, you find a whole page dedicated to him with complete detail of his personal and professional life. They’ll write only about how he served the country and how we have lost a diamond. Of course, he was a diamond. Diamonds demand a lot of money to buy them and that is exactly how he was.
What happens when one or two soldiers or policemen die?
A headline saying, “Two men died in crossfire.” That’s it.
Do not expect to find much detail in that article, you won’t find any. This article will be lying somewhere, in some corner of a page, overshadowed by other more interesting news items.

Media really plays an important role in making news viral. Would we have ever even thought about that girl if they didn't want us to? Millions of people stuck in front of their televisions acted accordingly. Now there is this new rage about the two soldiers and thanks to the media, people are at least thinking about it and respecting their priceless sacrifices. People are the puppets and media is their master.  It can be any media, television or internet, when a trend begins, people just go with crowd. On Independence Day or republic day, people suddenly get patriotic. They start remembering our great leaders of the past and those who sacrificed for the independence because in school they were taught that we remember them on the 15th of august and on the other national days. So they took it too seriously and started following the rules as they thought that these honorable men are to be remembered only on those particular days. You see the problem? There is no value of their lives.

One should not show their concern or respect when they don’t really mean it. Sitting in your home and saying words like ‘rest in peace’, ‘jai hind’ is very simple. A real tribute to them will be when people fight for them and for anything bad that is about to happen, before the next crime actually takes place. Why should we wait for the next ‘trendy’ crime to occur?
It is the intention behind every action that matters. Only then, the thousand sacrifices will have their meaning. Only then, we can ask them to ‘rest in peace’.


Saturday, January 5, 2013

Poem: Diary Blues

Dear Diary,

Today, I’ll share with you
a story of a boy
because you are my only ally.
So, lend me your ears
and a few moments from your years.
Here it goes…

“There lived a lonely guy
he had no friends, no brothers
or nobody who would die.
Nobody to serve cold dishes,
no malicious foes,
or to make any ill-wishes.
He desired no miracles,
neither prayed for no gifts,
nor was he lucky for free-falling apples.
He was his only priory,
an introvert for a speaker,
and his only  listener, a dear diary.
One fine day, God showered a surprise,
and his life turned into a nightmare,
gifted him friends for reprise.
They became his oxygen,
someone for whom he would sacrifice,
would walk into a lion’s den.
The foolish fish jumped off its bowl,
in expectation to find more water,
into a world that offered no soul.
Unaware was he of the fire,
following the paradise,
which would light up his pyre.
Absent from the real surroundings,
lost in the music so divine,
he trusted in the imaginary bindings.
The god-gifts took him so high,
up above the world,
and dropped him down, to die.
“Why did you stick to the ones who lied?”,
with a lump in its throat,
on his death, only his diary cried.
Do not expect no amends,
the boy lived and died alone,
and that is how the story ends.”


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