Bose vs Them

Mohandas K. Gandhi at the Indian National Cong...
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Netaji shall always stay  one of the most important and respected figure in Indian National movement, looking through the annals of Indian National movement, he seems to be the only one among the major leaders, who seems to have no seemingly obvious flaws. Nehru is criticized in all circles in India, Gandhi might have been the Numero Uno pre-independence, yet you shall find Gandhi bashers in every corner of India (I am not talking about pro-Gandhi people, as they were and would always be present in large masses everywhere). Netaji, who was at a particular time (perhaps?) more influential than Gandhi (1938-39). But 70 years from that time, and many decades after his supposed death Netaji although popular among Indians by the virtue of his name and his war cries like “Delhi Chalo”, “Tum mujhe khoon do, main tumhe azadi dunga”. He shall always be considered a national hero, but leitmotif of the pages of history have been the question of his death(about which nothing can be done) and the supposed ignorance or negelect meted out to him.

The first part of this riddle, the question of life and death, which in itself is a very interesting question and a question of (perhaps?) national importance. Yet by all senses, the question might have lived out its time. But, the more important question could be the supposed neglect of Netaji, the way he has remained only a name in the history books unlike Gandhis and Nehrus who can be seen as landmarks all over the nation. The question of his death, at best can be termed as a bit of trivia, as the question whether a man died or not on a particular date can only be of certain level of importance to a nation of a billion. The question, whether a certain leader has been amply respected or not, has he been given his proper due or not, is one which can be perceived as one national importance and thats what I shall try to pursue in the next paragraph or two (which is the max such a platform can allow me).

The powers at the centre is censured time and again for neglecting his contribution and name (and perhaps rightfully so). This might seem an act of disrespect to the ‘bharat mata ka veer putra’. There certainly could have been more recognition for the man. But, looking at it all from a broader (and different) perspective might/should not arise such issues in the mind of people. Even if we emulate the views/doctrines of the Great man himself, which if it has to be described in one word, can be called Realpolitik, which in lay man terms can be defined as bit of ‘opportunism’. One of the comment he made was, if he had to shake hands with the devil for India’s independence he would do that. Hence if we look at him taking his own ideas as the backdrop, it can be seen (to an extent) to be consistent with his doctrines. It’s the opportunism/realpolitik which has kept him away from the well deserved honour. The Gandhi/Nehru ideology has been the winner in the struggle among the Freedom Fighters, and hence Subhas has more or less remained in silent pages of history.

Although this might seem wrong to some people, but then History has never gone by right or wrong, it has always been written by the winners, and with valid reasons. This can even be related to Survival of Fittest, ones who win have the right to do things their way, because its been their method which was more successful hence giving them more of an option of surviving. Hence, Netaji great as he might have been, lost somewhere in the race and since politics is always about masses and voices, and dead men dont posses any voices, so by any kind of rule/system, they are bound to receive less attention and importance than the ones who survive.

Thats why, I think its time, we leave the past and its legacy and start living with the system which has been in place, because it is there only after passing some tests. Even if, we ignore the dying part, saying Gandhi also died, yet his legacy remains strong as ever. Thats where we can find the fault in Netaji for not being able to set up a legacy or a support cast (read : Nehru) which could have carried his name ahead. After all it was the game of politics they were all playing and like any other thing in the world, some win, some lose!

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She’s leaving home

Not only the stories associated with the Beatles songs are an interesting bit of trivia for me, but one thing I like about their songs is, the stories they convey through the songs, and No Album does it better than the arguably Most Influential album in the history of Rock music, the concept album, which tells about the Lonely Hearts Club band of Sgt. Pepper. In this album, there are many real life incidents picked up by Beatles (mostly by Macca) and converted them into songs. Lovely Rita is another Macca song from the album, which does a similar thing, but here I shall pick up the song which talks about a certain Miss Melanie Coe, who ran away from her home, thus making it to the front page of Daily Mirror.

Although, Macca made up most of the facts in the song, as Melanie didn’t meet a guy from motor trade, rather her guy was a croupier and she left in the afternoon, contrary to the song, where its early morning when her parents discover that she is missing. Although, Melanie who was just sweet little seventeen then, claims that most of the other facts fitted to her story as well as the truth.

After 10 days of hiding away, the girl was finally discovered, as she too like many foolish teenagers, had let slip the place where her boyfriend worked. Coincidentally, Coe had met McCartney three years earlier when she was a contestant and prize winner on ITV’s Ready Steady Go! She has been known to go on record, saying that although
having a song written about her was good, yet this song shall always serve as a haunting memory of the misdoings of her past, as a result the song has been nothing but a painful reminder of a painful past!

Trivia : This was one of a handful of songs of The Beatles in which the members did not play any instruments.
PS: When discussing Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, composer Ned Rorem described “She’s Leaving Home” as “equal to any song that Schubert ever wrote.

Preemptive Planning

Local authorities and the govt are perhaps two of the most cursed things in India, after our very own legendary Ravindra Jadeja. Each and everyday, we end up cursing some or the other thing related to the administration, ranging from unfilled potholes or the roads which havnt been refurbished after the extended spell of monsoon that the city enjoyed. Yet, since the time I have come to Hyderabad, the HUDA (or whoever is the concerned authority) if it hasnt managed to be the best local development authority, then I would surely rank it above many places I have been to till date.

The whole life, according to me is nothing but a matter of balance, and it is in maintaining this balance that HUDA has more or less succeeded in the, almost 5.5 years I have spent in the city of Nizams. Sure, we shall always have our problems, the roads in old city will always be crowded and congested. The diversions in Hitech City, shall always be hijacked by a group of people, unable to quench their thirst of spending more hours working, taking (supposedly) illeagl shortcuts to reach office early. Still, with such problems which every major establishment shall face with the increase in population, specially the IT inspired population explosion that Hyderabad has experience in past few years.

Such a explosion is bound to fail all the existing systems of a city, yet somehow Hyderabad, much to its credit hasnt yet choked fully. You can still see open spaces, you can still find empty tracts of road, you can still travel 8-9 kms in 20 mins or so. Hyd, as I said, has been about maintaining balance, it hasn’t gone the Mumbai, Bangalore way and as a result making people spend major part of their days on road. Neither has it been lucky like Noida and specially Greater Noida, with having lots of space to extend and huge amounts of capital investment to support the impending infrastructure development. Greater Noida, when inhabited shall be a city to marvel, yet as of now, it just seems a lot of money invested to build lots of houses and lots of good roads, with no people to use them.

One major part of development of Hyd, since the time I have come here is the preemptive planning, a point, which, Not many planners around the country are taking into account. I still remember, once upon a time, the Nagarjuna Circle, used to be one of the busiest places in hyderabad, and was touted (perhaps misgivingly) as one of the busiest circles in Asia. Yet, just the construction of a simple flyover at the place, has decreased that problem by orders of magnitude. That was one example of taking action after encoutnering the problem, a strategy missing in almost all cities, where things are mostly allowed to Let It Be. Chandrababu Naidu, shall be thanked for inculcating a flyover culture in Hyderabad. After the construction of this flyover, the PVNR Express Way was also more of example of acting at the problem. The examples of preemptive planning are the new flyovers which have come up/are coming up in Hitech City and near Gachibowli (respectively). Agreed, the traffic at the Cyber Towers circle has increased exponentially in the last few years. But in no situation had the problem exaggerated to the extents of needing a new flyover. Similarly the situation at Gachibowli circle commanded even lesser attention than Cyber Towers, yet we do have a flyover construction in full force there as well, and, shall sooner than later, be welcomed by the sight of a new one. Yet, the most shocking part was, when I observed, what could only be the building blocks of new flyover near the Begumpet flyover.

I guess, for once we should thank the Authorities in Hyderabad, for trying to do their best in an endeavour to make the lives of us Hyderabadis simpler and more convinient.

Fine!

Delving into girls’ psychology is a hobby of mine, which unlike others has refused to die with time and age. Since the time I have come in contact with the female, they obviously have amazed and flummoxed me, and this amazement has always resulted in my curiousity towards the fairer gender increasing with every such incident.

There are some habits/particulars which are applicable more or less to the whole gender as such. There are always going to be exceptions for anything you suggest, but since this point is more of a generalization. So, you are bound to find quite a variety of examples which might falsify my claims. Yet, based on all the experience that I’ve had with females in my life. I have always found the use of the word ‘fine’.

The word fine according to its dictionary meaning is more used in a positive sense, supposed to be meant in appreciation of something good. On the contrary, the maximum usage of the word by the women/girls, is in a sense of showing disappointment/anger. Its only when the girl is very disappointed/strongly disagreeing with you and she wants to show her disapproval of you/thing in question, that the word ‘fine’ shall be called up from the dictionary of womanness, thrown up at you, leaving you puzzled about the course of action to be taken in order to counter the sudden threat you are faced with, as a result of synonymity capabilities of the English Language.

So now on, I pray to all the womenfolk, to let fine remain its original meaning and save it from the shame and humiliation of being meant something different than its original and intended form. We, the men, shall also be thankful to you for removing one of the question marks from our life.

PS: I think, now I should make a category Women as well.

Not Only

Not only the lovers
But the writers do make some tales

Not only the happiness
But the struggles too do make a man

Not only the shiny roads
But the potholes too speak a lot

Not only the romances
But the wars do shape the histories

Not only Hercules be idolized
But we shall always hear of a Timur-lame

Not only the stars above
But you and me shall shine alight

Officially : Quarter Life Crisis’ed

I have very vibrant memories of times in our school/college when going through the pages of TOI, I would at times stumble upon an article talking about the problems that the young corporate India was facing. The term used in the papers was Quarter Life Crisis. To describe,what I could make out of the phenomenon (after reading such articles time and again) was the confusion that these people had, the lack of purpose, lack of direction and such things which were threatening to disrupt their mental balance.

Looking from the POV of a starry-eyed teenager or an unconcerned college student, these issues didn’t amount to much. It was quite hard to appreciate the feeling of emptiness/void being talked about in the articles. It always seemed quite weird to me that people having good pay packages and all the comforts in life, they could think of, would still be unsatisfied, could still be puzzled and muddled. Looking from the point of view, I had at that time, getting a job and earning handsomely could have been the simplest solution to life anyone could ask for. Yet, such is the rule of life, that when you find the key to the lock of happiness, somehow or the other, lock  changes and you are left flummoxed at some nook or corner of a road, which until now had seemed like heading in one direction with no seemingly visible obstructions or turnarounds.

Today, more than 1.5 years since I left the college and joined corporate culture, left right and center, I can see people going through the Quarter Life Crisis. Words like void and incompleteness which only graced the pages of science textbooks for all such science graduates, started becoming the words which describe the current status of their lives. It might be wrong to say that most of the people this age are looking for solutions and things to do, yet the fact remains, that some way or the other this is the time to THINK. Someone’s happy with a relation, some one else is all geared up to settle down and have a happily satisfied life, some are looking towards their job and making a glorious career out of it through their own efforts, some people after spending enough time in corporate world are looking to go for education, mostly an MBA or MS which would help further their career in the line of service they choose. Such people, who have chalked out a path in life for themselves can definitely be found around us.

Yet even with all this said and done and people having options and many of them even selecting them, there remains a large chunk of population,  torn between the issues which shall decide their life, someone’s torn between looking for (and hopefully finding) a gf (ignoring bf coz girls just supposedly don’t care that much) or else, working for and looking to develop a career, which can be a bit difficult if you give time for the activity of finding and maintaining a girl. Troubles in the task of finding a life or a better(?)/different career is compounded by the fact that S/W field is a very comfortable and (atleast for me) a well-paying option, which desists an individual from taking any sort of risks because it shall involve giving up a life which is good, comfortable, paying and respectable! Almost everything you could want from a job is provided by the field, yet leaving a blank/void somewhere somehow which makes you think again and again, more and more until you are irritated by the thinking and also as a result of all this thinking have exaggerated the pre-existing void in your life.

Asking for a solution to such a thing, is never going to be easy. Since a whole generation is suffering with the problem, you would be hard pressed to find people in your peer group, who can give u solutions, at best people around can be used as a sounding board, on which you can bounce your own ideas and think for their views and opinions, but its going to be hard finding help more than that. It’s hard to say what path life takes in such cases, someone more experienced in this situation can help people out. But, each and every person having his/her own mindset/problems/talents/desires leads to the fact that no one can understand the issues like you do, and the things they recommend could be wrong in your context. I can’t say, which way this ends, or rather which way it shall chalk out for me, but I guess I shall be looking forward to it,because after all

Jeena isi ka naam hai