Writing is like T20 batting. If you block, you might as well retire to the pavilion! -- Pete Langman
Expat in Germany

Monday, August 31, 2015

For All the Wrong Reasons!

It took a Narendra Modi some twelve years to become as famous as he is now. It took a Bin Laden or a Mandela quite a lot of struggle to attain popularity. But they have all gotten fame for good or bad after a lot of struggle in their respective fields. Not only these, it might be a Red cross or a Kalam or a Honey Singh, all had some hard work behind them. They have all become famous for a reason. There are however few people and organisations who have become famous for all the wrong reasons. A few examples.

1. Hardik Patel
Another U-turn candidate. What he began was confusing, what he asked for is confusing and what he is trying to do is even more confusing because one different idea pops up from him everyday. A section of people might have been happy when he demanded to provide reservations to everybody or remove reservations altogether. A U-turn later, now he demands reservations only for the patel community. Coming southwards, the Jats, the Gujjars and now the Patels, all the rich and powerful communities in their respective states demanding for reservations is a disastrous thing for the progress of the society. Yet, this 25-year old got all the attention an average politician would crave for in just over a week! Sad thing is, political parties including the Aam Admi Party have come out in his support

2. Revanth Reddy
This Telugu Desam Party leader in the state of Telangana is the ever smiling one. When the media went to him with questions about his alleged role in the note-for-vote issue during the MLC elections, he was only smiling. Even when he went to cast his vote while in police custody, he put a brave, all-smiling face all the while. He was taken to jail later! After he was granted a bail, he rallied like Julius Ceaser after his victorious conquests. That is how he is as famous as he is. Not many knew who he was before this event. He is famous now!

Twirling mustache proudly!


Atleast in India, there is serious doubt about the number of people familiar with this app based cab service before that unfortunate event in Delhi. At least eight of every ten people in the country never knew what Uber was until it was cracked down in Delhi because of misbehavior towards a woman by an Uber driver. After that incident, a short span of ban later, the company came back to the Indian market only stronger. Now it IS everyone's private driver!

4. Radhe Maa
Love doesn't expect anything in return!
Now a superstar, there is little suspicion on whether this godwoman's name has gone out of Mumbai before her shopping mall stint. Apparently, she has now gotten a chance to enter the Big Boss programme!! Currently under scanner for several criminal charges, including alleged offences under the Dowry Act, indecency, leading farmers to commit suicide and fooling people for money, Sukhvinder Kaur a.k.a Radhe Maa is probably the one who has become extremely famous for the most wrong reasons. Some people are so obsessed with her godliness leaving many to wonder..."How??"

There are others in this non-exhaustive list, ever trying to attain popularity some how. Film industries are the most common grounds for this! Examples are Santhosh pandit in Malayalam and Sampoornesh Babu in Telugu...many more to follow

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Hanging between Life and Death

'We have no right to take away somebody's life as much as he/she does not have the right to take the lives of other people.' Mahati was telling her friend sipping her coffee in the Barista Lavazza opposite Shivaji Park. 'I do not support capital punishment because one, no one has the right to take away somebody's life, whatever the crime they committed. Two, because its not punishment enough, for there are things worse than death, like starvation for example. You give the man only one meal a day or bind him in a dark room with no one to talk to. Three, because hanging for me is government telling me it is not working for them. Hanging is just a way to retaliate terrorism. Neither does it stop, nor can it stop!'

They finished their coffee and took a walk along the Dadar beach. Her friend said, ' The concept of capital punishment is definitely debatable, but not in this matter. This death penalty has been given to a terrorist who was behind nearly 300 deaths. This is not merely a punishment given to the individual but is a sentiment of the masses who were severely affected by the havoc created by the first and the bloodiest bombings the country has ever seen. What will the government achieve by torturing this man? Also, is torturing not worse than death? But what really worries me is that instead of debating capital punishment, people are giving this terrorist a hero's farewell. When they acknowledged him as a terrorist for 21 years, how can they all of a sudden idolise him just because he was hanged?'

They took bus no. 86 to home. As they passed Century Bazaar, Mahati's friend told her,' 22 years ago, a bomb planted in this very 86 number bus went off here, killing some 150 people. 150 common people of different background and injuring more than 250. My uncle who got deafened was among those who were injured badly while his brother died. Terrorism has no religion. Neither life nor death has any religion. It is only in between them that religion appears and in most cases brings death faster!' But, Mahati said, 'stopping such madness can happen only with vigilance, not vengeance. This fight by religious groups can be ended not by retaliation. Do you think terrorism can be stopped by linking it to religion and hanging people?'

'No, this is not vengeance or retaliation,' said her friend. 'This is a way to console the grieving families. Look at what happened in America. A mad man opened fire on a peaceful movie watching crowd. What wrong did they do to him? He will now not be hanged. Will the kin of the dead feel vindicated this way? Hanging such mad men is only a way to assure the affected that justice prevails and that they might be in safe hands. It is just an attempt to bring a smile into the devastated lives of those affected by the heinous act of the terrorist!! There is no justification in telling that the man surrendered himself because he was responsible for bringing in terrorists, accommodating them, storing the weaponry and arranging for scooters and cars to blast off! The death sentence is only a symbolism for assuring the people, no religion involved at all. Definitely no religion.' her friend explained as they walked along the bustling jewelry markets of Zaveri Bazaar.

They reached home. Her friend's uncle just returned from his Isha Salat and sat down in an arm chair and was reading the day's news in the evening paper. He finished reading the paper on the table, folded it with his single hand and looked at his brother's pictured framed on the wall, a tear rolling down his only eye.