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Celebration Times: Let Good Win Over Evil!

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Christmas on and the year 2010 about to come to a close it’s celebration times indeed! We all must celebrate, but in a most positive and inspiring way. Celebrate with a difference and inspire others to fall in line.
At the same time it’s reviewing times too. You must take stock of the year about to vanish into eternity. What good you achieved and what mistakes you made in the year. You have to build up on your achievements and learn from your mistakes to start the New Year.
Year 2010 constantly reminds you of scams and high level corruption if you are an Indian. Good that just at close the Scam Emperor of 2G Spectrum and the Kingpin of Commonwealth Games corruption have been finally nailed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The CBI has huge task to perform in 2011 and it definitely needs your best wishes and support. The Adarsh Society Scam and others are just lurking in the corner to be tackled. Punishment must follow crimes.
Few terrorists have also reported entered Mumba…

Vijay Jadhav: Abrupt End To A Promising Career

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December 13, 2010. We had been shooting for a program at Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Mumbai. Around lunch break we got the shocker—Vijay Jadhav was no more. Too shocked to believe I phoned the Director of Pune Press Information Bureau (PIB), Prashant Pathrabe. Prashant hesitatingly confirmed the sad demise of the young Director of National Film Archives of India (NFAI), Pune. And I had to accept it.  
For the few times that I met Vijay Jadhav his hyperactivity and high energy was very hard to miss. He was always working on some new projects and one job at a time was never optimum for him. For NFAI he was traveling the whole of India with film packages. Once on a holiday at my native city Guwahati I was amazed to find his name in local Assamese newspapers. For the Goa International Film Festival he always had something new and exciting to offer. Vijayji also had additional charge of PIB and had been actively involved in all its Public Information Programs throughout the state of Mahar…

Test Cricket No 1: Team India ‘Zeros’ In!

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It’s all the zeros that vindicate India’s No. 1 position in test cricket. It was 2-0 against Australia  and 1-0 against New Zealand in the test cricket circuit.  Then, a resounding 5-0 against NZ in the one day series. Such margins involving zeros were unheard of in the recent past for team India. This marks a departure from an entrenched mindset.
Earlier, India was known for snatching defeat from the jaws of victory that underlined the team’s unwillingness to win or a lack of aggression or positive instinct. With Captain Dhoni and the ICC No.1 ranking the scene is fast changing. Now, Team India can snatch victory from the jaws of defeat like in the first test against Australia that proved to be an epic thriller. Now, Team India can depend on surprise packages from players like Harbhajan Singh who score back to back centuries and figure in match saving partnerships as against NZ in the test series. Now, Team India can depend on the reserve bench and even the second reserve bench of pl…

Now Showing: Democratic Circus!

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An exemplary circus is running very successfully in India and today it has completed 15 days of unmitigated popularity. It’s exemplary because instead of the usual circus tent you behold the esteemed Parliament House. No problems, only humans are performing since animals are already banned from circus shows due to cruelty. Oh yes, India is the largest democracy of the world.
The backdrop is the 2G Spectrum scam that cost the country thousands of millions of rupees and gave unbelievable windfall profits to the telecom companies that were endowed with the 2G licenses.
Right, opposition is justified considering the level of corruption. But at what cost and whose cost? Opposition should be righteous, not politically motivated. For the 15th day today, the same absurd routine is followed in both houses of Indian Parliament. Speaker comes in at 11am sharp, opposition members stand with raised hands and shouting, Speaker beseeching them to sit and calm down so that work begins, house adjourne…

Wanted! A Training Course In Corruption?

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Scam after scam! The marathon is not willing to stop. Adarsh Society, 2G Spectrum, Kickbacks for Loans, Land Grabbing. You name it!
What all these prove? One thing only. Everybody is bent upon making the extra buck—by hook or by crook as we have said earlier in this space. Corruption has taken deep roots in our hearts. It is fast becoming a culture. And why not! Jobs are being sold and bought in most of the places. If one buys a job or career for a hefty price s/he would first like to recover the cost very quickly. Salary recovery will be very slow. So, corruption gets ingrained into it.
Considering the widespread acceptability a foolproof training course in corruption is the need of the hour. This is bound to help one and all. Besides, this will also help prevent scams to surface.
The course should have two modules. One—How best to take Bribes. Here three basic factors would come into contention.
Greed: There will be again three varieties. Plain Greed, Greed with intelligence and Gre…

Lucky Oye!

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One day stopping my car at a busy traffic signal a lottery ticket seller came up to me. He was gesticulating displaying a whole bunch of tickets for my kind consent. Never a believer in my lottery luck I politely declined. Disappointed, the seller kept the bunch on my car bonnet and began rearranging them. Then he moved forward. But, moments later he rushed back pointing to a ticket lying on the car bonnet. He picked it up looking at me very meaningfully and waved the ticket towards me saying, ‘This ticket belongs to you, Sir! Don’t let this opportunity slip away!’  As the signal became green and I drove forward slowly furious thoughts invaded my mind. Was that a good omen? Should I have bought it? Damn it! Now it's gone and lost!
A few days later the same incident happened again and I seemed to recognize the seller boy too. This time I noticed one ticket left behind on my car bonnet and observed him closely. He took a few steps away and then suddenly stopped, sorted out the ticke…

Adarsh, Action and the Corruption Exchange!

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As expected, action was initiated moments after President Obama left India for Indonesia.
Prithviraj Chavan was appointed new Chief Minister of Maharashtra. Prithviraj Chavan who had been a central minister in Delhi has been enjoying a clean image over the years and there are exemplary stories about his efforts at his native town and constituency Karad. He was sworn in at a simple ceremony and he ordered all posters of him removed from all places of the state.
The central Environment Ministry had served notice on the Adarsh Society as to why it should not be demolished. Now the extreme step of demolition becomes extremely likely and why not; corruption must be rooted out.
But, at the same time, something else had also happened. A media channel showcased a veteran politician who made a sensational offer of exchanging most corrupt with less corrupt so that status quo is not disturbed.
You are familiar with telephone exchanges, stock exchanges, traffic exchanges or foreign exchanges. It …

President Obama: Mumbai Taken By Dance!

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Mumbai waited with bated breath for the huge event. US President Barack Obama's Air Force One landing at the financial capital Mumbai to start the President's  maiden visit to India. Amidst unprecedented security arrangements and Diwali celebrations in full swing almost everybody in town was intensely focused on Obama.
Yes, the Chief Minister Ashok Chavan did indeed receive the biggest guest possible on earth at the airport and presented him an illustrated book on Maharashtra. Of course, the Chief Minister avoided attending the CEO Business Meet at Trident Hotel or other functions at Taj Palace Hotel for obvious reasons.  The Chief Minister along with some of his cabinet colleagues were invited earlier by the US Consulate for the Meet asking them to bring the invitation letters and identity proofs  for entry!  The Consulate did indeed finally apologize citing security concerns. The most powerful people within the state had enough reasons to be rightfully offended. Coincidental…

Scam, Diwali and Obama!

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Yes. all the shades are there! The Adarsh Society Scam of Mumbai is raging with the Chief Minister of the state of Maharashtra Ashok Chavan in the dock and many others in the ministerial cum ex-ministerial cum top bureaucratic hierarchy deeply involved.

A Society building  in a plot supposedly belonging to the Indian Army, a society building supposedly for the widows of martyrs of Kargil, a society building supposedly to be a six story affair soaring to 31 floors eventually and a society building decidedly in the richest and poshest locality of India. Even if widows would have been given the flats how on earth could they have maintained themselves in the costliest neighborhood!

And so, over the decade every famous and powerful managed themselves one or more flats. Today in the Times of India, a national newspaper that exposed the scam, one top retired bureaucrat belligerently justified his two flats, ' You see, my father was an army officer and so my mother deserved a flat, then m…

Sardarji Jokes! Laugh At Yourself!

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In India ethnic stereotype jokes have been common. The most popular and widespread among them are the Sardarji jokes. Sardarji is the male stereotype of the Sikh community--a religious community known for its bravery, chivalry and extreme hard work over the centuries. Their state Punjab is one of the most prosperous in India. 

There are many theories why jokes have been made at their expense; there have been many protests by the Sikh community on different occasions; but, it has been widely agreed upon that basically all these jokes are good nature humor and that many other ethnic stereotypes are also available for cutting jokes at in India including the south Indians, particular business communities  and particular professions.

The most positive attribute of Sardarji jokes is that stalwarts like Khuswant Singh  and other Sikh personalities themselves wrote so many lucid  Sardar jokes. This proves the sterling quality of the Sikhs 'to laugh at themselves'. For proper understa…

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Grand Suceess to Commonwealth Games, Now Tackling Shame!

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Very healthy that the grand success of the Commonwealth Games 2010 Delhi has not been allowed to bypass the shame that plagued it till the last minute. The Government of India appointed an inquiry committee the very next morning after the closing night. The message is loud and clear. No wrongdoer would be spared. The committee is asked to submit the report in three months.

Thanks to tremendous performance of the Indian athletes and players leading to a recording breaking tally of 38 gold medals the Games would be remembered ever by Indian people. Thanks to the Government of India and the Government of Delhi pitching in at the eleventh hour the pride of India has been salvaged. The world media has been all praise for the Games including the spectacular inaugural ceremony and for all purpose India has arrived now thinking about hosting the Olympic Games.

One thing remains. The time all committees take or are given to submit the reports. Why three months? Such committees take ages and fi…

IPL Bashing!

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Yesterday the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) scrapped two of the Indian Premier League franchises for irregularities. This mammoth task was possible only because of the irresistible urge to keep Lalit Modi out of cricket business.

There are many reactions--mostly from the investing business tycoons who cried most foul. Like Vijay Mallya, the liquor baron, who said investors should be respected. Well, why the investors want live human beings to put their money on nowadays!

Seeing the reactions I thought I would also react!

I am not at all happy with the decision! Why only two teams--namely Rajashtan Royals and Kings Eleven Punjab--have been scrapped? Why not scrap all of them? If all the teams were scrapped the IPL tournament itself would have been scrapped! And, that would have been a great service for the future of the beautiful game of cricket!

Save cricket!

Australia vs. India: The Giants Vote For Test Cricket!

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What a nail biting finish! What a match! And, Team India won it too!
A suspense packed cricket test is not a rare phenomenon as myopic people think being constantly hammered by the propagators of the short or shortest forms of cricket. You see, cricket commentators or experts cannot be believed nowadays! Because they are hopelessly caught in the web of Boards, Brands and Bucks! What they say belongs to a particular moment and you forget it next. If they had written the obituary of Test Cricket on numerous occasions they had compulsions to do so!
Anyway, a classic game of cricket with ups and downs, unpredictable twists and turns, a collection of bad umpiring decisions and almost unbearable suspense on the last day today, October 5, 2010, Mohali . The first test of Ind-Aus Series in India.
Australia won the toss and naturally elected to bat because on Indian pitches the last day is always supposed to be heaven for spinners and nightmarish for batsmen. Aus went on smoothly, had a slump …

The Ayodhya File!

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The suspense was more unbearable than in an Ind-Pak one day international cricket match. The wait was agonizing fraught with apprehension. Some sources reported that millions of bucks exchanged hands on betting over the verdict!

Our newsroom, maybe many more all over India, was crowded with eager staff, and editors trying to get the details for the coming bulletin. There was din in the TV monitors and pin drop silence in the usually noisy newsroom. Nobody wanted to wait any longer. Out with it and end it all!

For over sixty years the Ayodhya Temple-Mosque issue continued unabated with the bloody riots in 1992-93--a languishing scar that anyone would ever be able to forget or forgive. Nobody wanted a repeat of that.

It started at the appointed 3.30pm and by 4.45pm bits and pieces were coming in. The announced websites refused to open all the time. At last, the three judge Lucknow bench of Allahabad High Court delivered justice.

A verdict that could not afford to please or hurt any par…

Commonwealth Shame 2010!

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Why the obvious was not perceived as the obvious? After the biggest scam to hit the Commonwealth Games 2010 Delhi the responsibility was still left to the pack of thieves! The chief of thieves carried on boasting, carried on the Baton from place to place wasting more and more of taxpayers' money! Corruption should also have some honesty! You make money okay, but do the work! At least!

Just what's going on? With hardly ten days left we are still talking of preparation! India boasts of her hospitality, but athletes are withdrawing day after day, teams are delaying arrivals and countries are issuing advisories. Honorable Prime Minister has intervened now and the chief of thieves has been sidelined. But why now? That should have happened long long back.

Huge wastage of taxpayers' money in a country of poverty stricken illiterate millions and with inflation raging at 15%+ still. Okay, it was decided to waste the money in the spirit of sports and goodwill. But after deciding to…

Desperately Seeking Amitabh Bachchan !

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The superstar of the millennium is shining bright, as ever. From hair oil to cricket to politics the name of Amitabh Bachchan has become synonymous with success. Anybody launching anything needs him to succeed. 
When he was growing a little old there was brief stopover in his success graph in the early nineties. But 'Kaun Banega Crorepati' made him roar back to mainstream.
Everybody understood how much Amitabh Bachchan was loved adored and respected by one and all and in all fields of activities. His growing age was a challenge accepted by the producers, the directors, the advertisers, the industrialists and the politicians 
Indian films began to be centered on him and his age, and special protagonist or even antagonistic roles were created to fit his age. The channel producers wanted him to launch their reality shows or events or even serial. The advertisers wanted him for every product to ensure its popularity. The superstar was a must for any launch of any service or business…

Well Done Monsoon! And...Happy Ganesh Chaturthi!

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The South West Monsoon has been very generous this year. It has rained nearly 130% of normal rainfall in Mumbai and Maharashtra. That is to say, so far! The Monsoon is most likely to stay for the whole month of September. There is a  mood of celebration though in some areas excessive rainfall has threatened to cause damage to selected crops. Mumbai, suffering from 30% water cut since times immemorial, is now free of any cuts. The most enjoyable part of the Monsoon this time is that the rainfall had been spread uniformly. Nature did not finish its quota furiously in just one day or in few days and so Mumbai was free of major breakdowns.




Celebrations, of course! The festival season is just about to begin! The 11 day mega Ganesh Festival starts on Friday night with idols being installed and Ganesh Chaturthi Puja on Saturday morning. Ramzan month is culminating with Id on Friday too. Then comes the nine-day Navratri ushering in the fortnight of goddess worshipping-the shakti cult. Durga…

Pakistan Cricket Fixing: The Indian Link?

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Finally Cricket has got a huge resounding SLAP right and square it had deserved for so long! Hats off to that epic sting! And kudos to Times Now for doing a brilliant expose relentlessly and continuously! Yeah, The Rot Is Out, but the sleaze is only oozing out! Tip of the iceberg!

Time and again Pakistan cricketers get on getting caught on cricket fixing innings galore. But this time it's big real and brazen. This will go a long long way before cricket or politics win!

It's Pakistan of course, but why only one Indian link? It's bound to link all the way to India! BECAUSE, India's got the numbers, India's got the craze, India's got the market, India's got the money, India's got the IPLs, India's got the money spinning flat mockery of pitches and India's got the fixing mixing politics!

And, to get the Indian links exposed would be kind of a Mission Impossible. You know why!

Only time or hopefully Times Now will tell!

"Cricket Is Equal To Commerce!"

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"India and Sri Lanka conveniently reached the final of Sri Lanka Cricket ODI Tri-series-2010 and that was all that mattered. Sri Lanka had to be in the finals for doing home marketing. India had to be in the finals for doing all the marketing put together. All the wanted money being earned and swallowed what finally happened in the final was hardly of any relevance.

That India lost in no way made the profit lesser. Just imagine a final without India! It's the worst nightmare possible for any commerce minded person.

With the coming of one day cricket big money really came into the game. But more the money more greedy one becomes. So, they created a short cut to money by introducing IPL or short cut cricket called T20. Now they have best of both the worlds provided India oblige. To balance the limited with short cut they even introduced ground-diggers in recent times by having ads crushing and hammering the live field. For this they wanted only a long shot in between balls.How …