Saturday, April 22, 2006

While They were studying

...I was minesweeping.I think any score under 60 would be excellent,while 69 was tough if would ask me.Let's see if I can manage it before the exams finish.

Btw click on the pic to enlarge ,its intermediate in 69 seconds.

Monday, April 17, 2006


"There's just as much money to be made in the wreck of a civilization as in upbuilding of one"

-Rhett Butler, Gone with the wind.

Absolute brilliance I must say. It all depends on your buccaneering prowess. Philosophically speaking,however grim the circumstances be,there's always a way to take advantage of the situation.
As the Gita says," All that happens ,happens for good."

Update:Rhett Butler seems to be the master of nuggets and aphorisms,here's another one
"Marry for convenience and love for pleasure."

Well quite true, because if you think logically,marriage as an institution originated mainly to set inheritance boundaries and social structure. But that does not mean that marriage is just a societal obligation. More views on subject later.

I expect more aphorisms from Rhett,as I read on.

Monday, April 10, 2006

K.K Soap

Imagine you were introduce a soap against the mighty FMCG companies like P&G and HLL.How would you invade the consumer mindspace.

Lifebouy:Germ Killer
Lux: Beauty Soap
K.K: ?

We had this discussion in one of our G.K lectures at PT,some of the taglines that I remember from cornucopia of ideas that came out are...

K.K: A Soap which serves as mosquito repellant
K.K: A Soap which gives you confidence
K.K: A Soap that strengthen your muscles.

It's all about obtaining that precious little consumer mindspace, and do it without much advertising while competing with giants like HLL is not an easy task.Here's a story of someone who has done it.

C.K Ranganathan the CEO of CavinKare has scripted a very inspiring success story.He was awarded the ET entrepreneur of year award in 2004.Another morsel of story is of Karsan Bhai of Nirma who made life tougher for HLL.

Congenital Indian Inefficiency

Indian governments have a congenital inefficiency; they are extremely inefficient when it comes to implementing laws. I say congenital because this has been going for more than 50 years. We are often besmirched with calumnious statements like we are laggards when it comes to taking decisions. We are like cows that we worship, capable but slow. Indian government to Indian judiciary anything that is state owned suffers from this malaise.

Reservations is one those policies which has had a mildewed effect for if Mr. B.R. Ambedkar was to be believed we should have done with our reservation policies before 1960's. Increase in quotas now only caveats the fact they have not had been successful.

In Times debate today, taking a counter view, Mr. Amrith Lal says
Quotas aren't anti-merit. Merit is a category that is influenced by social and economic hierarchies.

I think he still clings to old shibboleths of education and societal status, today the people who benefit the most from reservations are the ones who least need it, people who albeit being SC/ST/OBC are economically sufficient. Most of these families have a generation which has already reaped on the quota benefits. I think the reservation benefits should be limited to only one generation. But again we are known to make most perfect laws and implement them with resplendent imperfections; hence the repercussions are always unknown.
Although a 125% increase in reservations is exorbitant I think it was inevitable, the fact that this bill was passed 379-2 in the Lok Sabha speaks profoundly of decadent attitude and ethos of our leaders.

Often such cases are followed by page-3 aspirants sallying into action,calling for protests or giving 'I-know-english' type of comments to the local reporter.Last couple of years since my college has gained quite a bit of media importance I have been able understand media quite a bit by being close to such page-3 aspirants.I think I will post about it someday.

At same time protests like Hunger-strike,and other revolutionary measures are not only futile but also a blantant display of temerity.

The best way to deal with situations like these is first to create awareness and then garner some resources , file a PIL and fight it in the court of law. The strong alumni of the ivy -league institutions and the student community can financially support the court proceedings

On a more personal note the increase in reservations filled me with consternation initially but my tenacious optimism as always rescued me and I could laugh it out with this...
As the Old donkey says in Animal Farm

"Donkeys live a long time,none of you has ever seen a dead donkey"
well so do humans and dogs.

Sorry a bit of PJ(personal Joke) but i found the above quote very apt to the situation.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006


Just realized this while reading "Gone with the wind"

"War with all the foolishness that it surmounts to,invites most astute wisdom."

-Anubhav Agarwal,5/4/06

Sunday, April 02, 2006

The Independence Hangover

“At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom”
"The world was not sleeping; it was for example 2.30 in USA"
- Hazaron Khwaishyein Aisi.
Yes, the world was not sleeping galloping rather. I somehow had come to believe that Nehru, his commanding heights theory and his “temples of modern India” were all to blame for India’s poor economic growth post independence. Also, I hail from a faction that has always believed that Sardar Patel would have been a better prime minister and Nehru with his ostentatious lifestyle and his deep rooted socialist believes was a mistake. Although I always believed that Nehru was a wonderful leader and a heartthrob of millions, I always doubted his capabilities as an administrator and a decision maker. A lot reading recently has changed my views slightly, though I still reckon he was not the best decision maker around.

One of the many things that we normally level against Nehru is that we had a shunted economic growth courtesy the PSU’s and his central planning concepts that finally bogged down to license raj and hindered the economic growth, in all his socialist views.
As MJ Akbar very profoundly puts it
“I think that's very very unfair. Every 'ism' is basically a reflection of the moment. There's no permanent ism. The only permanent ism can be faith -- like Hinduism or Islamism.”
Very true, Nehru did almost what most of his contemporaries did, at that time to lay out a proper an infrastructure the only way out was state intervention. As Manmohan Singh once said in an interview,
“Let me say that I think the economic history of the last 150 years clearly shows that if you want to industrialize a country in a short period, let us say 20 years, and you don't have a well-developed private sector, entrepreneurial class, [then central planning is important].”

But as somebody once remarked, “Business of the state is to stay out business”, I think after laying initial infrastructure government should have backed out. As Judith brown puts it,

“…the problems lay in the late 1960s and 1970s when the groundwork had been laid for development and the State could have stood back.”
“..Yes, I think he should have given up some time in the late 1950s.”

Actually most of the problems due to socialism that we attribute to him came during Indira Gandhi’s reign. As MJ Akbar says,
“Much of the Socialism that we attribute to him actually came during Indira Gandhi's time, when under the advice of certain people whose names are best forgotten, she went to the point of once even proposing that the wheat trade in the country should be taken over by the government. This is all post '69-70, when politics took over economics.”

Yes, that is when the draconian FERA and MRTP came, when we build walls around us. We prevented ourselves from the Coca-Colaism and Pepsism, although that execrable feat is normally attributed to George Fernandes, the foundations were actually laid with FERA. This was the same time, when Deng Xiao-ping, revered as the greatest Asian administrator, opened the floodgates for FDI in China.
Lets consider socialism as an experiment that failed, but an experiment that was perforce at the initial stage of developement after independence.

As Upamanyu Chatterjee puts it in his usual acerbic candor,
“Has socialism been good for anybody but the socialists?”

On a lighter note I just realized, while typing the above paragraph in MS Word that Deng Xiao-ping is actually a word in its dictionary and Indira Gandhi is not. Looks like Bill Gates, has same feelings for Mrs. Gandhi as Henry Kissinger.
Coming back, another issue surrounding Nehru’s leadership is that he committed an epochal blunder by referring the Kashmir issue to the UN. I am more inclined to believe that Pandit Nehru was culpable in this regard. Claude Arpi gives very strong arguements to this in his article,along with an anecdote redolent of Nehru' s incapabilty of taking decisions in imperious situations ,by Sam Manekshaw.
On the final front of Indo-China war, which finally became his Nadir, one of Nehru's personal weakness was to blame.According to Judith Brown,
[..]problem lay in the fact that he a. was his own foreign minister and b. there was no powerful counterweight of an external affairs establishment or minister to challenge his views.

[..]His inability to delegate -- gathering so much power to his own person as prime minister that he stifled opposition and failed to nurture those who might have challenged him

So, who do you think was a better choice, Nehru or Patel. Nehru was surely more suitable for the international arena albeit it is difficult to explain his grievous foreign policy blunders.

Supporters of Patel say that if he would have been PM , he certainly would have driven the tribesmen right out of India by never agreeing to ceasefire and there would'nt have been an entity like POK.

Alam Srinivas once wrote in the outlook, arguing that such a step would have created an international furore and embroiled Indian realtions with UN.

Although I find it hard to swallow this arguement after all that has happened in Kashmir,
I must say that even if we employ inumerable casuistries in our essays we will remain as much vunerable in predicting the past in differnt frame of events as we are in predicting in future.


I have seen good times. I have seen bad times. I wrote ‘scraps’, people called them ‘craps’. Bad. They derided my jokes saying that they were even below Uganda’s poverty line. Bad. Snide remarks from presumptuous kids became quite frequent. Bad. I stopped visiting blogs of my friends. Bad. They stopped visiting me. Bad. I became extremely irregular with blogging.Worst

22 days after 1st anniversary of my blog I announce that in future I will try to squeeze a post every 1.5 weeks. Apparently I forgot the anniversary. Thank god blogs do not have a sex.

On 13th march 2005,in my first post I wrote about one of the Indians I admire the most, M.K. Gandhi, today, I will write about his successors.

One of my teachers once asked me who do you think represents brand India or is the most popular Indian?

What would be your answer?

Aishwarya Rai

Amitabh Bachchan

My answer is Mahatma Gandhi, what’s yours?