Wednesday, December 13, 2006

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Friday, November 24, 2006

Some advice for Dr. Singh

Good editorial in the Indian Express. Read here.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Snow and Ice

It is that time of the year, when it has snowed and the snow has not gone away. At this point you know that the snow is here for the next six months. Also with daytime saving kicking in (whatever is the logic behind this concept), and when it starts getting dark at 5 PM, the depressing cycle of the year has just begun.
Neways this is a thing which happens only at the begining and the end of winters. During these times, when the temperature swings across the freezing point; the SNOW melts when the temperature goes positive, and when the temperature comes back in the negative, the melted snow freezes back to form ICE. This ICE causes people to slip and skid all the time.
Note, the differnce between these two words, ICE and SNOW. Snow is soft and crystalline, when you put your foot in a pile of snow, it goes right in. On the other hand there does not even exist nething called a pile of ice. Ice is amorphous and slippery.

What prompted me to write this post was that, the two words 'ICE' & 'SNOW' dont even exist in Marathi OR Hindi. There is only one word for it 'barfa' , 'baraf'.
Do these words really dont exist, or I am just not aware of them? Or is it possible that they do exist in Kashmiri perhaps?

Thursday, October 12, 2006

PhD comic (pilead higher & deeper)

Really cool comic strip I came across, based on life of graduate students!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006


Everyone today acknowledges Amitabh to be the biggest and greatest flim star in India ever. But little do we know that there is a lot of fate involved in making of this star. A lot of permutations are involved in any one's success.

You can read here, about his initial few years in bollywood. Apparently, after his long line of initial flops he had planned to return to Allahabad if his movie Zanjeer hadn't worked. When in the beginning the movie didn't do well, he went down with a fever, but after the first week when it started doing very well, his fever became even worse, as he couldn't believe that he was finally a superstar.

Also I didn't know the fact that he was at a certain time known as a tall idiot actor!!! Truly amazing.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

China will be ready. Will India be?

Here is an interesting article, I came across. While this only gives the story from just one side, I hope our foreign policy and defense strategists are aware of the possible machinations.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Vande Mataram

India's national identity is drawn from its culture and symbols of nationhood cannot be completely devoid of cultural overtones.

Quoting from a recent article by Sudheerendra Kulkarni in I.E.; "As for the Leftists’ claim that the “the national ethos” of post-1947 India should be “only civic and territorial in nature”, and that it must have no cultural underpinnings and overtones — because that would make cultural nationalism as the basis of India’s nationhood — its sheer inanity is mind-boggling. By this logic, our Motherland would be reduced to a mere civic entity, cleansed of all its rich cultural-spiritual ecology, and the Republic of India, with its proud legacy of a living civilization that is over 5,000 years old, will have to be replaced by the Municipal Corporation of India."

In the following articles he also with rational arguments explains why singing Vande Mataram shouldn't be a problem to anyone by giving an analogy of Naguib Mahfouz in Egypt, and citing Nehru. There is no need for a disclaimer, if u read the linking articles.

I hope the readers are mature enough to not misinterpret the context.

Part 1. Part 2.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Andaz Apna Apna

One of the most poular movies in Hindi Cinema has been Andaz Apna Apna. But after watching Dumb And Dumber, I realised that it might have a lot of scenes ripped off from D&D. Like the one in which after Aamir Khan adds some stuff to Salman's food, and then he has to keep visiting the restroom. D&D has the exact same scene.

But a little bit of googling tells me that D&D released on 16th Dec 1994, whereas AAA also released in 1994 (dont know the exact dates) but also that it took five years to make the film, because Aamir and salman didnt get along too well. This probably implies that D&D got the inspiration for the scene from AAA! If they indeed did, I don't know how that was possible because of the short time span between the two releases.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Outsourcing- Beat this!

While having a conversation with Chris and Adam one friday afternoon about everything from the UN, world economies to US and outsourcing, I distinctly remember Chris saying, "Can we just outsource the war in Iraq to India?"

Looks like it is pretty much happening. You can read it here. Also the big question is What Next?

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Mogambo khush hua !

I came across this article in the Mid Day. Being an admirer of Amrish Puri, I was surprised to come across facts about him which I did not know earlier. His interaction with Spielberg and also the fact that Sanjay Dutt is his nephew was interesting.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Power of Blogging

In the wake of the recent attacks in Mumbai, the Indian government has blocked ExposingTheLeft .Blogspot.Com. Not going in the nitty gritty of this issue (regarding the ethicalness of it), one thing is clear that bloggers have power which can upset governments.

With the flow information and news lucified by the internet, every individual in the world has access to pretty much all that is to know about the happenings around the globe first hand. Hence no longer can governments and the tradional media fool and misguide masses.

Recently a lot of the people are of the opinion that NDTV and CNN-IBN are biased. Although NDTV has a very capitalistic outlook, they are extremely soft when it comes to reporting on the Left front. Wanna know why? Perhaps not many people are aware that Pronoy Roy’s wife Radhika Roy (she calls the shots in the organization along with Mr. Roy) is sister of Brinda Karat, a senior leader of CPI-M and wife of CPI-M General Secretary Prakash Karat.

A few years back when the NDA government was in power, Murli Manohar Joshi (who is considered to be BJPs Arjun Singh equivalent), had introduced a change in the fee structure in the IIMs. NDTV had very harsh criticism lined up for him, when not a single soul was protesting on the streets. Recently when the whole of India was outraged about Arjun Singh's policies, surprisingly NDTV didn’t find much too wrong with, if you compare it with the former. Radhika Roy is allegedly close to the Caucasian female.

CNN-IBNs Rajdeep Sardesai has also very serious allegations about being biased.

In a nut shell, what I mean is, people can always read newspapers and listen to news on the television, but they can now also access the situation first hand and come to their own conclusion, and also publicize it (through blogs). Hence they have a new found power which if used ethically can serve for the betterment of the society, and not just believe what the traditional media have to say.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Pope scared of hawking?

According to this article, Pope John Paul 2, asked scientists at a conference not to study too much about the beginning of the universe since it was the work of God. Probably he might have been gravely concerned about science exposing the theist fallacy.

I really wonder if the religious leaders do know that they are misguiding the common folks. Their whole life is concerned with God, I am sure the rational ones on questioning themselves must have realized how wrong every one is about god. If each one of us had never been told of the concept of God, we would have never imagined it on our own.

But we are so used to this, having been told about this since birth, that we have never questioned this belief, which really amazes me.

Also Stephen hawking is quoted in the article saying, "We are getting closer to answering the age-old questions: Why are we here? Where did we come from?"

How close are we?
This is a question that even Mr. Hawking may not be able to answer. But I hope to know it in my lifetime.

Probably God can answer it. What an irony !

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Questions by a fellow atheist

How do you justify your existence?
I am wondering how many of you out there wonder about your existence? What on earth are you doing here?

I always get amazed when I think about the complexity of the life forms....for instance...all complex life forms have almost perfect design for seeing things around - eyes? similarly for hearing?...for that matter any part of the body......and humans have outclassed other species with...complex network of neurons...which helps them to think ahead in future!!

And more amazing is the fact that all these evolution occured begining with random aggregation of molecules to start with kicked itself into action....the aggregation that survived the hostile environment..what Darwin would say....'survival of fittest'....replicated further....and aggregated further...and continue to evolve.....over millions of what we are today.....and so it continues....the battle of survival...which including humans inherently indulge in every proved by the way humans would try to outclass/compete other peers, find a better mate, etc....

It appears all life forms are survival machines designed to take advantange of different environment/living conditions to do one thing best....survive!....ensure the propagation of their design....which is embedded in the genes!!

So what are we, biological survival machines - biological robots ??
[courtesy: ORKUT]

I have thought about it, and continue to think about it, futilely though, this is the biggest reason why humans thought of the concept of god in the past, currently people are too ignorant to question themselves. probably some day scientists will answer the question. hopefully in my lifetime.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

An International airport at Pune?

Sadly not so soon.

Yet another Rahul in the news

As if news created by Rahul Mahajan was not enough, Rahul Bajaj decided to jump in the scribes too. Ironically his being in the news has a lot to do with Pramod 'so many skeletons in the closet' Mahajan. The rajya sabha seat vacancy caused by the soap opera like episode, had to be filled, to which Rahul Bajaj was nominated by NCP, and backed by BJP-Shiv Sena. The congress had fielded its own candidate for it.
This caused so much tension between the NCP and the Congress that there were rumors of NCP allying with BJP.

So Bajaj's nomination for the Rajya Sabha post almost split the NCP and the Congress. This is so very ironic. Ironic because the Bajajs over last few generations have known to be congress loyalists. Jamanalal Bajaj was follower of Gandhi, and was sort of adopted by him. He was also very active member of Indian national Congress then. Rahul Bajajs father was treasurer of the Congress party after 47. However Rahul Bajaj is not exactly following their foot steps. In the Walk the Talk interview, he was queried by Shekhar Gupta, if he is more inclined towards the BJP.

Well if the Congress and NCP do split, and the NCP allies with BJP, the Shiv Sena will surely split with the BJP (as they threatened to do in the last lok sabha elections, when there were speculations of Sharad Pawar allying up with BJP). Congress and Shiv Sena can never be allies and Raj Thackeray will never ally with Shiv Sena. Raj Thackeray allying with Congress also does not seem possible. So a Raj/BJP/NCP can indeed be a winning combination.

A lot of Iffs and Buts, but will surely be interesting in the next elections.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Disney Theme Parks in India?

Yes, soon that could be a reality!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


Was having a conversation with an Indian guy in my university about Indian words being absorbed into mainstream English. The common ones I knew were verandah, jungle, mantra, pundit, karma and a lot more.

While studying for GRE I as told that, if I go to the US, I shouldn't be supprised if a professor asked me to go out for shay (written as chai, but pronounced shay in the US), as that is nothing but desi tea. I had initially thought that this might be the case in really upmarket places in New York, were investment bankers might be fascinated with the fancy exotic stuff. But was suprised to find shay in my own University Campus!

Neways, I will finally get to writting, what I intended to, in the first place. I had first heard the word Juggernaut, when Navjot Singh Siddhu, had used it for his team, in the fantacy cricket program on ESPN Star Sports. I didn't learn the meaning as, 'irrestible crushing force', untill later. But wasn't aware of the origins of the word even then, which was really really shocking.

Would you believe that the origin of the word, comes from the Jaggannath Yatra in Puri. Read about it on Wikipedia, they will get across the point better than me.

Did ya know about this stuff? If you did, how naive am I?

Monday, June 12, 2006

The Code.

Saw the Da Vinci Code, a long time back. But two posts on karname of Mr. Arjun Singh, and then an instinctive one on Pune Traffic mean that I couldn't write on it until now.

Previously I had written about the book, that I had liked the facts more than the fiction. The facts about pi were most fascinating. The fiction part (or was it really fictitious?) was very audacious and shocking for me to read initially. But several dozen documentaries on Discovery and The History Channel later, it is all I remember from the book.

The movie is really bold, with Sony Pictures not giving a disclaimer about the stuff being fictitious. Again the ending was a bit modified in the movie. With Sophie mockingly trying to walk on water, and then joking about the wine thing.

Just before the climax, she asks Langdon, whether she should reveal to the world, the truth about Jesus's Bloodline, and hence his mortality. To this Langdon cites, that as a kid he had once fallen in a well. Being raised as a Catholic, he yelled and hoped that he will be rescued by God. Eventually someone helped him and he was rescued.

And thus he implied that, although he thought that God does not exist, the faith is necessary for people. So in a way the makers of the movie almost re-endorsed Jesus's mortality and hence him being non Divine.

I seriously agree with this; if we think rationally, all of us will realize the prophets being not divine. We should accept them as great men, after which great 'Books' were written. The divine force was just an attempt by people to explain non understood phenomenons.

In any case I do wish to visit The Louvre, Church of Saint Sulpice, Templar Church, and Westminster Abbey, the sites mentioned in the book. And that too now, pretty soon, and not when I am fifty and ugly!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

This says it all

Somehow I never wrote about the reservation controversy, but this pic from says it all.

Saturday, May 20, 2006


Driving to your job or to your college, I am sure each one of us has been fed up, at some point of time, by the traffic on Indian roads. Crawling ant like vehicles which have developed an intimate understanding of the movements of vehicles around it, find their way through traffic, with amazing efficiency. If you can drive on these Indian roads you can drive anywhere!

But at some point you might of wished for a sparkling tram, which could take you to work, passing through spaced out high rises and cool greenery too.

Looks like this might happen soon near you.

The new mantra for growth in India has been special economic zones (SEZ's). Under these, special zones are identified, they are provided with world class infrastructure, flexible labor laws, and this will be used for export based industries. This is the exact way that China has achieved it's economic growth, and now India is banking on it. Incidently the first SEZ in India was before that of China, but subsequently, we lost the path. There are around 100 applications for SEZ pending before the government.

The biggest SEZ in India is planned near Navi Mumbai, called Maha Mumbai, by Reliance and the Maharashtra government.

(open the linking article, when you really have the inclination to read it, cause it's really long)

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Pramod Mahajan

Such a tragic death to a leader so charismatic. I was thinking of writing a post on him before the event that took place on saturday, and i wish i would have written it. I was a true fan of Pramod Mahajan.

My first recollection of him was when he was made national security advisor to the prime minister, the first time the BJP came to power; he used have his parallel press conferences after India had tested the nuclear weapons in 1999. He was earlier the Defence minister in the 13 day BJP government, when was just 48!

Subsequently whenever I saw him on television I uesd to get the feeling that he will make it big in politics. The last interview I saw of him was not more than three weeks back with Vir Sanghvi. In which when asked whether he saw himself as a future PM, he had replied that in Indian politics only members of gandhi-Nehru family could be sure of becoming a PM some day. With his loss the BJP have lost a crucial gen-next leader.

I still can't believe he is no more. His popularity was reflected from the fact that leaders across party lines came to pay him a tribute. From Sonia Gandhi writting letter to his wife, to Bal Thakare, Chagan Bhujbal, LK Advani, Vajpayee, Somnath Chatterjee, to corporate leaders like Anil Ambani and Rahul Bajaj.

The last regret is that he could have been the first person from Maharashtra to become the prime minister.

May his soul rest in peace.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Brand Name Confusion!

This is a very fascinating phenomena. Many times for a particular product or service, a brand which is providing it, gets its name associated with it, and that product is recognized by the brand name itself. There are quite a few examples of this in India.

Here are a few I know.

1) Mineral Water:- Packaged drinking water or mineral water. The brand name BISLERY is so popular in India, that 90% of the people refer mineral water as BISLERI. If you were to go to a store to buy some bottled water on a hot day, you would ask for a BISLERI.

2) Photocopyer:- All over the world making copies of your important documents is called photocopying. But in India you call it xeroxing your documents. This is probably because Xerox copyer machines were fist to come in India, and became very popular subsequently.

3) Chocalate Bars:- This is probably because untill recently only Cadbury chocalates were available. Elsewhere it would be called, perhaps a chocalate bar, but in India we just call them just CADBURY.

I have also been told that in villages people refer to toothpastes as COLGATE.

I am sure there are several more such examples. If you know do tell me!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Indian in WWE

I got this video clipping from a friend. I have been told that the guy in this is an Indian. Well Undertaker Dwarfs most others in WWE. But yet this guy literally toys with the undertaker. This guy is huge!!!

Can watch it here.

Saturday, April 15, 2006


Latest news on Aamir Khan is that, he is supporting the Narmada Cause. First thing that came to my mind is that, if he wants, he can join politics and do pretty well in it. Unlike other movie in stars in politics, he has indeed some good views, opinions and ability to do good work for the people. (What is govinda doing in politics? alternate carrier? Also has alleged links with the Underworld)

He, in the past too, had openly voiced his views on Iraq, and Gujrat. I then thought, if he is against the Narmada Dam thing, just because of him being anti Modi, and Modi being a strong supporter of the Narmada Dam? The answer was a simple and obvious NO.

The first thing he said on television during the protest was that, he was not there for any political party nor against any party or individual, and also that he didn't have any intrest in politics and does not want to join it. That answered my first question as well.

Sadly he does not want to join politics. His last film preached about, not waiting for the difference to happen but being the difference. Apparently he considers himself only giving the message and leaving the 'being the difference' thing to others. Nothing wrong with that.

Also according to me he is among the best Actor in India if not the best. If you play all Shahrukh movies back to back, you will probably not realize where one ends and the next begins, cause the character he plays in all of them is pretty much the same. And according to me Salman isn't a actor at all. What were his movies with David Dhawan, in which he uses an American accent for his Hindi, about?

The word they use for Aamir as an actor is Versatile. I guess I will stick to it.(honestly dont know what it means.)

Friday, April 14, 2006

Indian Hypocricy

I saw a debate on NDTV which dealt with relations between India Pakistan and the United Sates. It had Aamir Khan as one of the guests. (personally my favorite actor, and best of the khans, more on it later)

Pronoy Roy who was hosting the show, made a remark whch completely floored me. What he said is certainly true. He asked Aamir Khan, "What is this hypocracy against the United States in India? Everyone hates America (I don't), and yet they want to go there for higher education. So it is like ' Yankee Go Home But Take Me With You '?"

George Fernandes

Recently an event occured which probably didn't as much media coverage as it possibly should have. George Fernandes was toppled as part leader of the Janta Dal (U). What the newspaper says about this is that, this is possibly the end of his political ambitions.

My compilation of all that I have know about this person. He was probably todays 'left' equivalent in the NDA government. The essential socialist. Made his way into national politics through trade union politics. In the early 90s (or late 80s), he along with Datta Samant (one who unionised the Mill workers in Bombay, and lead their agitation, which eventually led to the closure of the prosporous textile industry in B'bay) almost crippled Bombay. George Fenandes did that with a Railway strike, and a very long one too.

Ironically he later in his life wnt on to be the Railway Minister. Not the only irony in his life though. He had aspired to be a priest earlier in his life, and as Defence Minster was alleged to be involved in the 'coffin' scam. He was not without his share of controversies. (Have yet to see a non-controversial politician) Also his spat with Mamta Banergee in the earlier NDA regime had led to the collapse of the government then.

Nevertheless from an, another person on the street who went on to become the defence and railways minister, his life has been some journey. Although this may not be the end for him afterall since everything is possible in Indian Politics (Congress and BJP allies?????????). So dont count the person clad in kurta and sandals out.

One thing which I am sure of is that, we may mock them(politicians), we may curse them, but we cant do without them. They are indeed a colourfull tribe.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Sehwag lbw anderson, blame Mehta from NASA

I wanted to write about this long ago, but somehow never got time, or was too lazy. I guess by now there must be thousands of blogs by cricket junkies on this new phenomenon.

Dr. Mehta is a NASA scientist of Indian origin. Dr. Mehta works in the fluid mechanics lab at Nasa’s Ames Research Centre in California. Dr Mehta has come up with a new kind of swing for fast bowlers and has been helping the English bowling coach Troy Cooley.

Heres how it works-

CONVENTIONAL SWING: The ball is released with the seam angled towards first slip or fine leg, spinning backwards along the seam and with the polished side facing the batsman. The ball will swing in same direction as the seam is pointing

REVERSE SWING: Same release, except with the rough side facing the batsman. The ball swings in the opposite direction to that of the seam

CONTRAST SWING: Controlled by speed. With the seam positioned vertically , the ball swings towards the rough side at lower speeds and towards the smooth side at higher speeds.

So unlike the reverse swing—the movement generated with one side polished well and the other left with the rough edge— here, the drift of the ball doesn’t depend on the seam position or the asymmetry caused by selective polishing. The seam remains upright and the ball moves towards the rough side when delivered in the range of 65-70mph. A little over 70-mph mark, and the ball swings towards the polished side from the same position. Batsmen can never expect to read this swing as it is near impossible to differentiate such minute variation of pace from 22 yards.

Troy Cooley, the current English bowling coach has his new contract with Australia so expect them too, to be in the 'swing' of things.

THE IMRAN CONNECTION- He (DR. Mehta) opened the bowling with Imran Khan for Royal Grammar School, Worcester, in the early 70s. And that’s probably when Dr Rabindra D Mehta got his first clues to what later became contrast swing.

Mehta says he opened the bowling with Imran for the school team in 1972. ‘‘It was from Imran that I first heard of what became known as ‘reverse swing’. He told us about the phenomenon, but it wasn’t until we conducted wind tunnel tests the next year at Imperial College, London, that I fully understood what Imran was talking about,’’ he recalls.

(excerpted from, The Indian Express)

Certainly very fascinating, lets hope the Indians too update themselves with this new theory.

$100 laptops running on human power.

Read here.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Actresses then and now.....

I got to see this slide show on; it shows older pics of a few actresses along with their recent ones. I had seen ash's pic in it, earlier too, and remember saying that half of their beauty lies in the way they present themselves. Remember Karishma Kapoor in Andaz Apna Apna?

Also if this applies to actors as well, me too can have superstar looks!

You can watch it here.

Monday, April 03, 2006

More on Sunil Mittal

You can say the e-ink on my blog had not even dried, when I again read yet another an article on him.
Anyways heres more info on him.

Sunil Mittal was born in Haryana.(In no way realted to Laksmi Niwas Mittal, who was born in Rajasthan, and was brought up in Kolkata)

His first business was that of bicycles, in Haryana.

He recently started a food (fresh vegetables and fruit) export business; exporting to Europe, in collaboration with Tesco.

He is currently in talks with Wal Mart and Tesco, for a retail chain in India.(What is with reatil, everyone wants to enter it; will be kinda intresting to watch Reliance and Wal Mart competing against each other)

Friday, March 31, 2006

Sunil Mittal

For a long time, I was contemplating about writing something on this person.

The first instance was when I saw his interview on NDTV. Sunil Mittal, the Airtel guy.

Sunil Mittal is from a small place from Haryana. After graduating from university he wanted to start his own business, so he moved in to Mumbai, against the advise of his elders.

His first business was a complete failure. Later he moved in the telephone sector. He introduced the 'beetel' telephones, at a time when all you found were the stereotype rotating dial phones. That was before 1991, when he was not allowed to import them. So he had to instead assemble parts imported from Japan.

Later around 1993, mobile was a new thing. He entered the mobile sevice area, and was ridiculed by most since this was a business that required deep pockets. This period from 1993 onwards was filled with all sorts of litigations regarding awarding lisences. He baged the lisence for Chennai, Andhra Pradesh and Delhi around 1999. After a couple of years he introduced the AIRTEL brand. It has been smooth sailing since then.

Bharti enterprise was in the recent fortune 500 list of companies. He truly represents the New Age Indian entrepreneur.

Remeber the first Frienship Cup between India and Pakistan at Toronto, that time there used to be this constant musical jig commercial between overs, which went, "to see your beautifull smile....." that was Bharti Telecom back then.

Monday, March 27, 2006


I couple of days back I got a video clip of Vikram Sathye, in which he had imitated several cricketers. It was aired on SET MAX a long time back. I had in particular like it. I am sure you must have watched it too.

Here is a piece of it which was really good.

He imitates Micheal Holding, who is commentating in a match involving Australia.
Adam Gilchrist hooks the ball.

MH: Adam Gilchrist is a great 'Hooker'
The West Indians of the 70s were a bunch of great 'Hookers'
Adam Gilchrist too, gives people totally their money's worth!!!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

To hate all roses.....

It is Madnesss.....

To hate all roses because you got hurt with one thorn

To give up on your dreams because one didn't come true

To loose faith in prayers because one was not answered

To give up on your efforts because one of them failed

To condemn all friends when one betrayed you

Not to believe in love because someone was unfaithfull

To throw away all your chances to be happy because you did not succeed on the first attempt

As you go on your way don't give in to madness

Remember always another chance may come up

Another friend, A new love with no gaps, A renewed stremgth

Be persistent look for happiness everyday

It is often with failure that future success come up

Keep trying and smiling, god bless you.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Marxist Prime Minister

If India hada marxist PM. This is how India would be. Too good.

Barmy Media

The British media drawing inspiration from the Ramayana, for the last test against India at the Wankhede. It's intresting! Read on.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006


On this snowy wednersday afternoon came home early from school, to study. While watching CNN, which was flashing news about president Bush's visit to India, in the incredibly long commercial break, caught sight of something, which looked....... well, Indian. It was the new 'INCREDIBLE INDIA' campaign of the Ministry of Tourism, to promote India. It is a great time to launch it, when India is hogging the news in the US media for the nuclear deal.
The incredible india promo aired can be found here.

Of Nostalgia and the Economy

Here is an article from 'The Indian Express'.

Saturday, February 18, 2006


Finally christened my blog.

Reason for 'perestroika':- Being born in the year 1984, the year Mikhail Gorbachev started the Russian Revolution of turning the country in a democratic non-communist nation, my father wanted to name me after it(perestroika). Thanfully (and eternally gratefull for it) my mom had her way, and named me ,what she did.

Need any other reason....ehh?

Friday, February 17, 2006


Got this as a e-mail forward. Found it really good. So here it is, since I watch sienfeld sometimes in my free time. Not a great fan of this show as much as I am of Friends, but nevertheless.

George Constanza's (the short bald guy in Jerry
Sienfeld) Words of Wisdom, This is what George has to
say about the cycle of life..

"The most unfair thing about life is how it ends. I
mean, life is tough. It takes up a lot of your time.
And what do you get at the end of it ?? A death.
What's that, a bonus ?? I think the life cycle is all backwards. You
should die first, and get it out of the way. Then you go live in an old
age home. You get kicked out for being too healthy, go collect your
pension, and then, when you start work you get a gold watch on your
first day. You work forty years until you're young enough to enjoy your
retirement. You drink alcohol, you party and you get ready for high
school. You go to primary school, you become a kid, you play, you have
no responsibilities. You become a little baby, you go back and spend
your last 9 months floating with luxuries like central heating, spa,
room service on tap. Then finally you finish off as an orgasm !!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Sensex @ 10000

After an anxious couple of days the sensex finally reached the much awaited 10000 mark this week. The road from 1000 in 1991, when the economy was opened to 10000 was quite a journey. With a 6% average growth in the early years the sensex reached 10000 in 2006. So, with the present 8% growth and much touted 10% in the coming years (sounds exciting, ain't it), it is surely gonna reach some height.

My friend, like many other people had pridicted the 10000 figure a couple of years back. Well, they have a bigger grin, every time I see them now. When I was told about the 10000 mark, few years back, the sensex had just collapsed after the congress had formed the government with Left support.That time I almost laughed (my ignorance). They surely must be laughing their way to the bank now.

Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, the grand daddy of the Indian investors, in one of the debates on NDTV had pridicted 25,000. I tried to find the time frame for it, but all I was told is that the sensex is bullish in the long run.

Trying to call your broker.........well, I don't blame you for that.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

BAD back in India

Yes, he is back. After a couple of years, Brayan Admas is in India again. Saw his interview on NDTV (his first ever with an Indian channel). He really gets the passion going in his live concerts. He really takes the audiences for a ride at these events. Especially the 'summer of 69'. When asked in the interview what does the Summer of 69 symbolize, he said that it was obvious. Well, elaborating it futher won't be appropriate. Anyways the guys, Jimmy and Jody mentioned in the song were actually members of the band at that time. The drummer Jody is no more(in the band) and Jimmy is still around.

I wonder when am I gonna be at his long elusive concert.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

FDI in retail

Well my last post spoke breifly of retail..........and here it is. The government has decided to allow 51% FDI in retail of single brand. Allthough this probably won't open up the floodgates nevertheless it means that, (if the left doesn't mess up things) we shall very soon see brands like Gucci and Versace in India. Well, more than that the government can gradually open things up and allow FDI in other retail sectors.

No wonder the left is protesting, as they feel that opening up the entire retail sector to FDI can be detrimental to intrests of cornershop owners.

Saturday, January 21, 2006


Well, if 2005 was year in which reliance was in the news for all the wrong reasons, 2006 is gonna be vastly different. Both brothers seem to have started to focus on their own businesses.

Anil Ambani it seems is poised to become an entertainment Czar. Adlabs, (51% ADAE owned) which he had acquired from Manmohan Shetty has bagged 26 licenses for FM radio for a whopping 112 crores. Adlabs already owns five multiplexes across the country, and is looking at 140 screens by 2008.

Adlabs Films is looking at investing Rs 50-60 crore every year and has already tied up with Ram Gopal Varma, Prakash Jha, Ramesh Sippy and Vipul Shah. Once Adlabs has a large network of theatres, it will be possible for the group to digitally transmit a movie from one centralised location to all the theatres through Reliance Infocomm's existing fibre optic network.

Reliance Entertainment is also working on it's direct-to-home venture which is being called Reliance Bluemagic for which it is aquiring a total of six transponders on INSAT 4B this year, and also might bid for sporting event rights including cricket.

Apart from that, Reliance Infocomm has also chalked out an agreement with Microsoft to look at IPTV. The company is all set to enter consumer homes with broadband Internet through its fibre optic backbone.

Mukesh Ambani recently successfully bidded for seven acres at the Bandra-Kurla complex in Mumbai for (hold your breath!) 1104 crores. Beating brother Anil in the race, it was the biggest land deal in India. This is reportedly for his next venture 'Reatail'.

His team includding Anand Jain and the Meswani brothers is readying to launch a chain of hypermarkets soon across the country. They are looking at 2500 outlets starting from September 2006 with an investment of 20,000 crores, and will employ around 250,00 people. Their counters will start in cities like Aurangabad, Ahmedabad, Surat, Mumbai, Banglore, Delhi, Ludhiana, Chandigarh.

With Such a scale it will make other players like Biyani's Pantaloon, Shoppers Stop, and even Waal Mart (if FDI in retail is allowed) look small.

Well trust Reliance to do their business on a grand scale!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


According to K.V.Kamath CEO of ICICI, India's second largest bank, and largest private bank, the urban market for them is getting saturated, and so they are looking towards the rural market for growth. Kamath’s hypothesis is that rising urban incomes will also stimulate rural aspirations; and ‘‘as rural aspirations grow, it will be important to meet them by helping to create rural wealth’’.

One of the challenges in doing so is the operating costs. Indian banks, on an average, operate at a tenth the cost of foreign banks, and for rural banking they will have to cut costs by a fourth further.

Creating such a structure meant getting past social and infrastructure bottlenecks such as illiteracy, lack of electricity and telecom connectivity. So a solar-powered ATM, operating on wireless technology which uses biometric identification instead of the standard PIN cards was one of the solutions.

But trust modern day Indian companies to come up with innovative solutions. ICICI Bank is likely to pursue a better and lower cost alternative more aggressively in the form of point-of-sale terminal attached to the local bania store. This involves the same biometric identification, but since the bania uses and deposits cash extensively, it will marry his financing needs with that of the bank customer.

The business potential for this is huge: it is common knowledge that unorganized enterprises and rural folk pay usurious interest rates to money lenders. Also, in the absence of funding, there is large-scale wastage especially in the process of getting agri-produce from farms to markets. (Excerpted from The Indian Express.)

APJ Abdul Kalaam must be happy man if reads this, since he too has a similar vision called the PUARA i.e. providing urban aminites in rural areas, as part of his Vision 2020 for India.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

It's Finally Coming!

The movie based on the Blockbuster Novel 'The DaVinci Code' is releasing on May 19, 2006. So if are not among the 25 million people who have read the book, you still have a couple of months before the flim is out.

What is more exciting is the cast. Tom Hanks for the role of Langdon. Initially they were speculations of Salma Hayek for the role of Sophie, but a Latin American girl, playing a French character didn't seem proper. The producer Don Howard and director Brian Frazer infact were called upon by Jacques Chirac to say bonjour and to make sure all was well with the flim shooting. He recommended his daughter's best friend, a french actress of some acclaim for the role of Sophie but Audrey Tautou ended up getting the job.

The movie is shot in the Louvre, but they have used a duplicate Mona Lisa painting. The movie also includes the other locations in the book like the Temple church in London, and Rosslyn Chapel in scotland where Silas goes finding the holy grail.

If 2005 was not a good year for Hollywood, 2006 promises to be a blast with Superman, Spiderman3, X-men3, sequel to the pirates of the carribean, mission impossible3, and offcourse thr DaVinci code.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Secular or Comunist : The Perpetual Question

I am a great fan of NDTV 24/7, and well watched it 24/7 too, in India. But it wasn't without the tuffs with my younger bro, who wanted his share of M TV. Anyways, recently Rajdeep Sardesai who had a great role in making NDTV what it is, started his own channel IBN CNN, in collaboration with CNN. I desperately wanted to see this channel, couldn't so instead checked the web site. There I came across a blog by Sagarika Ghose ( Rajdeep's Wife), which had a post on LK Advani, which said that he must be really regretting what he did in 1991, which is why he made the remarks about Jinnah recently.

Here's what I think about it.

I strongly believe that the Congress is a pseudo secularist party. They have indulged in appeasement politics for a long time, ever since independence, which I believe is the root cause of everything. They are continuing what the Britishers did, divide and rule. A majority of the people found this unjust and felt left out.

These appeasement policies are, I believe, the reason for the formation of the BJP, in the 1980's, with the RSS ideology. This Hindu ideology appealed to the people, and the BJP rode on these sentiments.

But I think the BJP then went too far with it. There is nothing wrong if they represent the Hindu people, as a matter of fact they should, but they can do so without indulging in anti Muslim rhetoric. Similarly the Congress can represent the Muslim people openly and not do so by appeasement. In this context the Left front is good, it has a clear pro labor ideology and certain views on it, and they stick to it. That is why they keep getting elected in West Bengal (for about 50 years now).

Sudheerendra Kulkani, who is reckoned to be the mastermind behind Advani's remark, in some way recognized that the BJP can no longer get votes on its Ram Mandir ideology, since the anti appeasement anger was already vented. He tried to change that, and instead got the RSS ire, and it has been one step forward and two steps back since then.

I think votes should be devoid of religion and caste basis, and should be on pure governance issues. If the BJP sheds its communist colors, I will be more than happy to vote for it, as I like their pro-urban policies, and have a slight edge over the congress when it comes to governance. The Congress has some ridicules rural projects, like the employment guarantee schemes. It is ignoring the Urban areas. What people don't understand is that if they don't develop the Urban India how are they gonna get taxes for upliftment of rural India.