Thursday, May 31, 2007

Who wants to be a Beggar?!

India has the dubious distinction of being the only country in the world that has a population that is dying for being declared a beggar.

How else can one explain the violence unleashed by the Gujjar community in Rajasthan? They are already included in the OBC Category and now they are on a rampage just because they want to be included in the ST Category !! There can be no other label other than "Murderers" to be bestowed upon them !!

For the uninitiated, communities declared as OBC, SC and ST categories are given special “privileges” – like reserved seats in educational institutions, govt. jobs etc. SC/ST categories are given more privileges than the OBC category. Now there is also a public discussion on reserving jobs for such communities in the private sector too !!

But then, thinking of it, we ourselves are to be blamed for this. The makers of our Constitution made "Reservation" a household word. Their intentions were clear - upliftment of the poor and needy. But they failed to visualize the scenario when such upliftment was “achieved”. Ideally, there should have been a constantly reducing level of reservation by Law. With such an open-ended interpretation and scope for reservation, the political parties made it their “Agenda” – and ended up sowing the seeds for weakening our social fabric. Soon, reservation was no longer a privilege; it became a right – a right to die for … oops, to kill for!

And we have been, actively as well as passively, constantly been in cahoots with this political class that strives to remain in power rather than remain in administration. We have never questioned this – and even conveniently forgotten those who burned themselves alive during the “Mandal Commission” protests.

What a great superpower are we !!

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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Movie Review: Cheeni Kum

Year: 2007
Star Cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Tabu, Paresh Rawal, Zohra Sehgal, Swini Khara
Director: R Balakrishnan
Language: Hindi

Story Line: Buddha (Amitabh Bachchan) runs the restaurant 'Spice 6' in London which he claims is the "only authentic Indian Restaurant in London". His life is lonely, except for a mother and an 9-year old neighbour "Sexy" (Swini Khara). Sexy suffers from Blood Cancer and has only a few days of life left in her. Buddha is arrogant and egoistic man - is "bitter in teste" - hence "Cheeni Kum".
Over a misunderstanding as to how Hyderabadi Zafraani Pulao must be cooked, Buddha meets a 34-year old lady Nina Verma (Tabu). Later, as the turn of events would have it, the two fall for each other. The only problem - their ages !!
Buddha comes over to India to talk to Nina's father Omprakash Verma (Paresh Rawal) who is a Gandhi-wadi and a cricket fan. He gets very upset when he comes to know of Buddha's and Nina's intentions of marrying (specially since Buddha is 6 years elder to him) and launches his "Satyagraha" but later relents.

+es: Hilarious comic scenes, good chemistry between Amitabh & Tabu and Sexy's role are to watch out for. The music gets on to you really quickly - the best of the lot being "Jaane Do Na". A very different movie.
-es: Paresh Rawal enters the movie only after the interval :(

Verdict: 8/10 - a must watch !!

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Friday, March 23, 2007

My New Possession: Nokia N70

I recently bought a Nokia N70 - and am mighty impressed by the phone. But read this with a
pinch of salt as I have made a direct transition from an old LG set (older even than the Nokia 1100) to N70 !!

First the compliments, if there's one word to describe the N70 - sexy, is it. The phone fits
comfortably in the hand and looks awesome. Oh, I forgot to mention that I bought the Music
Edition - so am not sure if the Basic Edition would look as cool. The UI is pretty fast & responsive. And for those Snakes fans, look out for what this phone's got. The 1100 had a 2D
Snakes, this phone features a 3D version. And to play it - as one of my room mates put it -
is like a transition from Unix to XP !!

Well, negatives first:
  • Whats a phone (read Music Edition) without an Equalizer?!
  • It is not possible to jump to a particular song while retaining the whole playlist.

And now, the positives:
  • Ummmm ... where to start from?? :)
  • The 2 MP camera is good and if you want a low-res pic or want to do a Video-Conf, you have a camera in the front too.
  • The Image Gallery features a sliding transition that speaks loads about the processing speed of
    this phone.
  • The Games - watch out for Snakes !!
  • Features a High-Quality sound - and the biggest plus for the phone - it can be connected to external speakers. This wasn't possible with earlier Nokia phones.
All in all, a very good buy.

Vital Stats:
  • Price: INR 15000+ approx.
  • Camera: 2 MP (Primary)
  • Memory Card: 1 GB Free with the phone
For more details:

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Monday, January 22, 2007

Movie Review - Guru

Well, I'll give it 3.5/5.

Set in the times of Licence Raj in India, the movie is loosely based on the life of Late Dhirubhai Ambani. The protagonist, played by Abhishek Bachchan, uses all ways (Saam-Daam-Dand-Bhed) to operate and grow his business. Soon enough, a righteous reporter and editor start their investigations against him and are successful in bringing him under the scanner of Law. Then the climax - and that is the incredible part of the movie - shows Abhishek giving a speech justifying his actions. :(

If you think Abhishek isn't even an iota of his father as far as acting skills are concerned - watch this movie - he's far better than that.

As for Aishwarya - WOW - is the only word to describe how gorgeous and cute she looks. Just watch the scenes where she gets married to Abhishek.

A good movie to watch - but overall fails to make an RDB-like impression.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

A Salute to Mumbaikars ...

Mumbaikars are the best examples of Samaritans in our society. After the recent 7-in-a-row bomb blasts, that rocked Mumbai's lifeline - local trains (that carry some 5 million people daily), the rescue operations were launched by Mumbaikars only !!!

The first rescue operations came from train passengers and people in the vicinity of railway stations who complained that there was no trace of policemen in the initial half hour.

The taxi drivers also did their bit, by asking their passengers to get off so that they could ferry the injured to the nearest hospitals.

Would it have been possible in any other city in India? I'm afraid the answer is NO.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Kkrish - the Movie ...

Last week, I watched Kkrish - and was compelled to coin a new term - "Branded Movie". Mr. Roshan is supposed to have put almost all his money in the making of this movie. But then he also included numerous promotions - the most explicit being that of Tide. In one scene, Rekha is shown to pour Tide in a bucket with the letters "Tide" being visible to the viewers and occupying a substantial part of the screen. In another scene, Tide is shown to be kept with utensils in their house - now who would keep a washing powder along with utensils??!!!

The other "promoters" whom I can recall included Bournvita and Hero Honda. And not to forget (Uniquely) Singapore, which has tied-up with the movie.

As far as the movie is concerned, I can't say much except that I wasted my 150 bucks. The dialogues are really pathetic, the actions scenes (if any) are badly executed and a terrible storyline. Still, when the movie ended, the whole theatre burst with applauses - seems like Indians still love the romance, however silly it may seem. But, then I'm happy - I don't have the masses' taste :)

Friday, June 09, 2006

Google - the Mother of Invention

Google finally started its war on MS - atleast it seems so.

Google recently revealed its version of the Spreadsheet program - an important ingredient of MS's Office Suite of products. Though as of now, the application is more like a spreadsheet collaboration tool for the web. Using the tool, users can share spreadsheets online and make changes/additions so that the data remains consistent. Also, users don't need to store these spreadsheets on their machines - they can be stored on the Google servers!!! This service is a Beta version as of now, so it doesn't have those many functionalities. But they will be added soon - Google can be trusted on that. Its currently open only by invitations - check it out at:

Some time back, there were rumours about Google coming up with a new architecture that would allow users to directly login into a network, without an OS. I think this is Google's first move towards accomplishing the mission.

While browsing through Google Labs, I also came across Google Trends ( This is also in the Beta version, but has the potential to become an extremely powerful tool for Marketing people. It takes as input two items (commodities) and displays a graph listing the times the items were searched for on Google as a percentage of total searches on Google. It also shows the number of times the items were in use; also highlighting major news events at the peaks of the graph.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

A Bad Weekend ...

Just when the weekend looked gr8 for me, the news came a as a bolt from the heavens that the AP govt. has banned "The Da Vinci Code" in the state. This happened just one day before the opening of the movie. Shouldn't the govt. care about how much money various organizations have put in the promotions of the movie? And is the govt. so indecisive? - first it tells Sony Pictures to incorporate a disclaimer that the movie is a work of fiction and clears the movie release and then just after a week, following the TN govt's ban, bans the movie.

So I ask, when my friends in Pune and Bangalore are enjoying the movie, why should I, staying in Hyderabad, be devoid of the fun? What happened to the equality of Indians?

Its turning out to be a bad weekend. After the AP govt. decided not to let me watch the movie, I came to the lab - hoping to practice the SAP MM package. But now the server is down. Phew !!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Reservations ... I Hate Them ...

I'm worried about my kids - I don't have them as of now; but when I do have them, where do I educate them? Coz as I see it, by the time they become old enough to be in college, there'll be no seats!! If Arjun Singh continues to have his way like this, I'm sure we can put our dream of India becoming a Superpower to rest. Everyone talks about the huge number of engineers and MBAs that India churns out - but a few years down the line, this measure will be useless. People will start talking of quality professionals - do we have them?

The situation worsens when we think of the reservations in place in our educational system. Garbage In Garbage Out!! I'm not implying that people who come from reserved categories are not good but when you put average performers in places like IITs and IIMs, they just can't stand the pressure. And I'm sure thereafter the profs will also quit. All in all, India has a dark future. :(

A better method would be to look at the root-cause of this problem - the whole question of reservation arises because of the social inequalities. So, fix them first. Put in place systems to ensure that children get primary education and then get good teachers (and pay them well) to teach them. In the end, this'll ensure that 12th standard students in govt. schools and private schools (irrespective of their "categories") will be at par - and then let them chart their own careers.

But seems like our govt. is more interested in finding shortcuts to success rather than a proper way of tackling issues.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

At Infy

I joined Infy on 3rd May, at the Hyderabad campus. This campus is simply awesome and spotless clean. See for yourself ...
Click here ...