Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I am scared....

I am scared....
Scared of venturing out, scared of the unknown terror lurking somewhere -- on the train, in the taxi, in the mall, at the theatre. Of a person brushing against me in a crowded area or lift.
Scared whether I will return in one piece -- or return at all -- every time I leave the safety of my home.
More than myself, I am scared whenever a loved one steps out. I am tense and pray until they all come back. Then, I heave a huge sigh of relief -- only for the tension to return the next morning, when someone steps out again.
I am angry. Angry at myself for being scared.
I think it has been increasing with time, this disgust and disillusionment with political figures. As their greed, hunger for power, complete irreverence to ordinary lives, their callousness to our suffering increased, so did our anger.
But it did not result in an outburst.
As I sat glued to my television screen, looking on in complete horror and disbelief at the surreal drama unfolding before my eyes at CST, my feeling of helplessness grew every minute.
The mind, numb with shock, refused to register it for real; it looked like a gangster movie unfolding in front of my eyes.
And when the action shifted to the Taj and Oberoi hotels, the magnitude of the tragedy increased manifold. These were the places one went to relax and celebrate. How? Why? What next? Questions arose in quick succession; and died unanswered.
As the tale of death and disaster progressed through three days and three nights, I found myself unable to tear away from the gruesome viewing; unable to sleep, or eat, or talk.
I felt angry at my defencelessness. The disgust at those who had sworn to protect and nurture the country started increasing.
They, the politicians, are called the leaders of the country. They use my -- taxpayers' -- money to guard their precious selves and leave me at the mercy of terrorists; like the defenceless ward boy of Cama hospital who manned the gate against terrorists -- and got a bullet as reward.
Why do these so-called leaders need to be guarded? Even if all of them are killed in terrorist attacks, is there even a single one of them who cannot be replaced the very next day? What entitles them to deserve the security for which I pay with my hard-earned money, and which is diverted from necessary weapons and protection to those who guard me?
They call themselves leaders. Who are they leading? With what?
Their insulated and inflated egos make them speak in deriding and patroniSing tones to a martyr's father. They make fun of a multitude of mourners. They make light of a calamity that has not only claimed lives but scarred whole families.
Do they care at all?
No sir. They resign listening to the voice of their muted conscience only when sure of being booted out otherwise. Some even then cling on to their chairs like a dying man does to an oxygen mask.
Politics has become big business. They call it service to the nation but in most of the cases it means amassing assets totally disproportionate to income. They enjoy unlimited clout and wield ruthless power on the same unsuspecting public whom they claim to serve.
Devoid of this only means of luxurious livelihood, most of them will not know how to fend for themselves. This is the only profession they are proficient in. This unique quality surpasses 'qualifications' of beliefs and ideologies.
No one at the helm cares for the country more than he does for himself. The generation that freed India from the British rule had left the comfort of homes to rough it up in jails for a mission. The current crop of politicians seeks the solace of politics for those very -- or greater -- comforts.
That is why personal safety was never a concern for those who lead India.
My father used to narrate an incident that happened during Partition. Pandit Nehru was visiting a riot-hit area in his car with a lone bodyguard. Suddenly, he asked the driver to stop the car and jumped out. A rioter was about to stab another man.
Nehru slapped him and snatched the knife from his hand before his stunned bodyguard could even react.
He was a leader who mingled freely with the masses and never had to resort to a bullet-proof car or screen to interact with his people. Gandhiji, uncaring of his safety, fell to these very bullets.
These were men who deserved to be protected -- yet they didn't care.
Why should we spend money on protecting worthless men and women who cannot look beyond protecting their own interest? Why should we pay for the protection of those who mock the common man's misery?
Let each of these politicians be stripped of the security cover and perks. Let them feel like the common men they really are. Let them understand that they are the servants of the people -- and then let us find out how many of them actually want to serve the nation.
The money then can be directed to where it is really needed. Let only those serve us, for whom politics has not become a business. The only face I could recall mixing with impunity with people post 26/11 was that of Milind Deora. I would any day be happy and feel safe having him or Rajdeep Sardesai or any former military chief as my chief minister.
At least they sound honest.
Incidentally Rajdeep was the only editor-in-chief who was not firing salvos from his desk but was at the war zone. Replacing a Deshkmukh with a Shinde a Chawan or Pawar is a meaningless exercise. They are clones. We need dynamic people at the helm of affairs.
It is time our politicians got over their 'till death do us part' romance with power. It is time to give the young a chance.
Everyone is hankering that an Obama is needed to save an India. But Obama does not need to spell Mayawati. Obama is who he is because of his sincerity, honesty, decency and dynamism.
This is what we require in a person to lead us. Let the state taste this at the helm of affairs. We will get our Obama at the Centre too.
God knows we need the change. And fast.......

Thursday, November 27, 2008

An Oath..

I would like the Indian Democracy to take an oath today to clean sweep terrorism from this wonderful nation called INDIA...'Our beloved motherland'.I know its very tough to take this decision in which there is a possiblity that we may end up sacrificing many of our countrymen(armymen or policemen)...But let us finish this once and for all;an intensive search operation is required..the whole law and order of the country needs to be addressed aggresively,remember the American Prez who made the terrorists literally Cry after WTC for their wrong deed.Their Soldiers went and hit them inside their own house.....and the result is 'No More Terror Attacks' in USA.The Americans literally made them weep...i think This is the need of the day in INDIA..

Why they put erasers on pencils...

This is one of the examples which really let think so hard sometimes that my nerves start on
A group of children were playing near two railway tracks, one still in use while the other disused. Only one child played on the disused track, the rest on the operational track. The train is coming, and you are just beside the track interchange. You can make the train change its course to the disused track and save most of the kids. However, that would also mean the lone child playing by the disused track would be sacrificed. Or would you rather let the train go its way? Let's take a pause to think what kind of decision we could make....Most people might choose to divert the course of the train, and sacrifice only one child. You might think the same way, I guess. Exactly, I thought the same way initially because to save most of the children at the expense of only one child was rational decision most people would make, morally and emotionally. But, have you ever thought that the child choosing to play on the disused track had in fact made the right decision to play at a safe place? Nevertheless, he had to be sacrificed because of his ignorant friends who chose to play where the danger was. This kind of dilemma happens around us everyday. In the office, community, in politics and especially in a democratic society, the minority is often sacrificed for the interest of the majority, no matter how foolish or ignorant the majority are, and how farsighted and knowledgeable the minority are. The child who chose not to play with the rest on the operational track was sidelined. And in the case he was sacrificed, no one would shed a tear for him. The great critic Leo Velski Julian who told the story said he would not try to change the course of the train because he believed that the kids playing on the operational track should have known very well that track was still in use, and that they should have run away if they heard the train's sirens. If the train was diverted, that lone child would definitely die because he never thought the train could come over to that track! Moreover, that track was not in use probably because it was not safe. If the train was diverted to the track, we could put the lives of all passengers on board at stake! And in your attempt to save a few kids by sacrificing one child, you might end up sacrificing hundreds of people to save these few kids. While we are all aware that life is full of tough decisions that need to be made, we may not realize that hasty decisions may not always be the right one. "Remember that what's right isn't always popular... and what's popular isn't always right." Everybody makes mistakes; that's why they put erasers on pencils...

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Shame on us!!!!!!

I was about to pick up my office bag and leave only then my eyes got fixed on the morning newspaper and a shiver went down my spine....Again!!!!!!....... they had done it again and this time with a different style,the style which had as big a blow on Indian Government's face as it was on the british bowler Staurt Broad when Yuvrajj Singh had hit sixes on every ball of his over during the T20 world cup.So many people dead and so many injured....Why What How When Where are some of the words which might be making a striking rounds in every Indian's mind thru out the world.This is a big failure of Democracy....I strongly feel that We have truly let down our freedom fighters who had sacrificed their everything for this country and today's politics has no time to even count the exact number of deads in any untoward incident like the one happening in Mumbai today...Shame on US!!!....

“Act Confident to Become Confident"

Mary Kay Ash instructed her salespeople, "Fake it 'till you make it." She meant if you act as if you have already achieved something, eventually you will achieve it. So if you act as if you are confident, eventually you will become confident.
This has been confirmed many times and by many people. Walter Anderson, who wrote the book The Confidence Course, says: "If you act as if you're confident, even though you may not feel sure of yourself, your confidence will grow. If you firmly fix the image in your mind of the person you'd like to be, you will begin to become that person."Heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali confirmed this. He said: "To be a great champion you must believe you are the best. If you're not, pretend you are."
George S. Patton, the famed World War II general, employed the same techniques. In World War I, Patton was a young, 29-year-old colonel leading the first American tanks ever built against the Germans in France. Patton wrote his wife that every day he practiced in front of a mirror looking absolutely determined and confident. He called this his "war face." He maintained that this look helped his troops and gave them the confidence they needed to face the Germans. Until I read that, I had always assumed that Patton was just naturally confident in everything he did. However, there is little doubt that acting as if you have already achieved perfect confidence, even if you are a little uncertain, will eventually make it so.
Mayor Rudolph Giuliani was asked how he managed to lead New York City out of the tragedy of 9/11 after so much destruction and death. He responded, "I used Churchill to teach me how to reinvigorate the spirit of a dying nation. . . . During the worst days of the Battle of Britain, Churchill never stepped out of Downing Street and said, 'I don't know what to do,' or 'I'm lost.' He walked out with a direction and purpose, even if he had to fake it.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Live humbly!!!

A real story which inspires me a lot ...A gossip between two Unknowns in Shatabddi Express Train .........An interesting and a must read!(I suppose)Vivek Pradhan was not a happy man. Even the plush comfort of the air-conditioned compartment of the Shatabddi express could not cool his frayed nerves. He was the Project Manager and still not entitled to air travel. It was not the prestige he sought; he had tried to reason with the admin person, it was the savings in time. As PM, he had so many things to do!! He opened his case and took out the laptop, determined to put the time to some good use."Are you from the software industry sir," the man beside him was staring appreciatively at the laptop. Vivek glanced briefly and mumbled in affirmation, handling the laptop now with exaggerated care and importance as if it were an expensive car. "You people have brought so much advancement to the country, Sir. Today everything is getting computerized. " "Thanks," smiled Vivek, turning around to give the man a look. He always found it difficult to resist appreciation. The man was young and stockily built like a sportsman. He looked simple and strangely out of place in that little lap of luxury like a small town boy in a prep school. He probably was a railway sportsman making the most of his free traveling pass. "You people always amaze me," the man continued, "You sit in an office and write something on a computer and it does so many big things outside."Vivek smiled deprecatingly. Naive ness demanded reasoning not anger. "It is not as simple as that my friend. It is not just a question of writing a few lines. There is a lot of process that goes behind it." For a moment, he was tempted to explain the entire Software Development Lifecycle but restrained himself to a single statement. "It is complex, very complex." "It has to be. No wonder you people are so highly paid," came the reply. This was not turning out as Vivek had thought. A hint of belligerence crept into his so far affable, persuasive tone. " Everyone just sees the money. No one sees the amount of hard work we have to put in. Indians have such a narrow concept of hard work. Just because we sit in an air-conditioned office, does not mean our brows do not sweat. You exercise the muscle; we exercise the mind and believe me that is no less taxing." He could see, he had the man where he wanted, and it was time to drive home the point. "Let me give you an example. Take this train. The entire railway reservation system is computerized. You can book a train ticket between any two stations from any of the hundreds of computerized booking centres across the country. Thousands of transactions accessing a single database, at a time concurrently; data integrity, locking, data security. Do you understand the complexity in designing and coding such a system?" The man was awestruck; quite like a child at a planetarium. This was something big and beyond his imagination. "You design and code such things." "I used to," Vivek paused for effect, "but now I am the Project Manager.""Oh!" sighed the man, as if the storm had passed over, "so your life is easy now."This was like the last straw for Vivek. He retorted, "Oh come on, does life ever get easy as you go up the ladder. Responsibility only brings more work. Design and coding! That is the easier part. Now I do not do it, but I am responsible for it and believe me, that is far more stressful. My job is to get the work done in time and with the highest quality. To tell you about the pressures, there is the customer at one end, always changing his requirements, the user at the other, wanting something else, and your boss, always expecting you to have finished it yesterday." Vivek paused in his diatribe, his belligerence fading with self-realization. What he had said, was not merely the outburst of a wronged man, it was the truth. And one need not get angry while defending the truth. "My friend," he concluded triumphantly, "you don't know what it is to be in the Line of Fire". The man sat back in his chair, his eyes closed as if in realization. When he spoke after sometime, it was with a calm certainty that surprised Vivek. "I know sir.... I know what it is to be in the Line of Fire......." He was staring blankly, as if no passenger, no train existed, just a vast expanse of time. "There were 30 of us when we were ordered to capture Point 4875 in the cover of the night. The enemy was firing from the top. There was no knowing where the next bullet was going to come from and for whom. In the morning when we finally hoisted the tri colour at the top only 4 of us were alive." "You are a...?" "I am Subedar Sushant from the 13 J&K Rifles on duty at Peak 4875 in Kargil. They tell me I have completed my term and can opt for a soft assignment. But, tell me sir, can one give up duty just because it makes life easier. On the dawn of that capture, one of my colleagues lay injured in the snow, open to enemy fire while we were hiding behind a bunker. It was my job to go and fetch that soldier to safety. But my captain sahib refused me permission and went ahead himself. He said that the first pledge he had taken as a Gentleman Cadet was to put the safety and welfare of the nation foremost followed by the safety and welfare of the men he commanded... ....his own personal safety came last, always and every time." "He was killed as he shielded and brought that injured soldier into the bunker. Every morning thereafter, as we stood guard, I could see him taking all those bullets, which were actually meant for me . I know sir....I know, what it is to be in the Line of Fire." Vivek looked at him in disbelief not sure of how to respond. Abruptly, he switched off the laptop. It seemed trivial, even insulting to edit a Word document in the presence of a man for whom valor and duty was a daily part of life; valor and sense of duty which he had so far attributed only to epical heroes. The train slowed down as it pulled into the station, and Subedar Sushant picked up his bags to alight. "It was nice meeting you sir."Vivek fumbled with the handshake. This hand... had climbed mountains, pressed the trigger, and hoisted the tri color. Suddenly, as if by impulse, he stood up at attention and his right hand went up in an impromptu salute. It was the least he felt he could do for the country. PS: The incident he narrated during the capture of Peak 4875 is a true-life incident during the Kargil war. Capt. Batra sacrificed his life while trying to save one of the men he commanded, as victory was within sight. For this and various other acts of bravery, he was awarded the Param Veer Chakra, the nation's highest military award. Live humbly, there are great people around us, let us learn!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

'The Truth'

u knw wat..........m very lazy at writing,but very fast at reading.i know it may sound stupid to you but this is how i am,anywz the road what i am travelling right now is full of thorns but someone has rightly said that "no Rose would have been as beautiful without thorns".....
Today i watched 'Ek Vivaah Aisa Bhi' and it really touched the bottom of my heart by seeing at the character of Chandni that what all hard times she goes through in her life and the sacrifices she has to make to take care of her siblings..outstanding......i mean i truly felt that it needs a big big big heart to take such decisions in one's life and i have always dreamt being on the same lines but let me tell u its hell difficult...its like walking on a pyre..but i truly believe that the kind of patience and love it was there between Prem and Chandni should be there in every couple or at least in the lead couple of every family and then see how there will be all the happiness in life......!