Posts

The Tales Of A Decaying TV

Image
I stopped watching TV much before Netflix arrived. Somehow, it didn’t make sense anymore.

On one hand were news anchors shouting on the highest plane of decibels audible to the human ear, trying to thrust their staunch opinions down everyone’s gullible throats, passing judgements on cases sub-judice and sensationalizing the trivial to gather attention, even at the cost of murdering sanity. While on the other hand were drama protagonists, draped in heavy silk saris, promoting marriage as the ultimate aim of every woman, career-oriented or otherwise, tracing their journey from being an obedient daughter-in-law to turning into a nondescript fly. Yes, you read that right - A fly.

As a child, I remember being excited about Sundays because that would mean I could wake up early and watch a slew of TV programmes. The nineties were a time when whole families would sit together and see the sagas of Ramayana and Mahabharata unfold on their television screens. It did require a bit of hustling a…

An Open Letter to a Closed Mind

Image
"Bombs and pistols do not make a revolution. The sword of revolution is sharpened on the whetting-stone of free ideas".

Dear Nationalistically-inclined, morally-supreme, omnipotent,'liberal-sickular-presstitude' annihilators,

You must already have judged me by the statement in Italics above (*The font was obviously not chosen because Mrs.Gandhi hails from Italy).
A lot of questions, pertinent at that, must be thronging your mind. Your fingers must be frantically dancing on your keypad, your mind- occupied with devising the choicest abuses to throw my way. How dare I talk about free ideas and opinions? How dare I utter the R word ? What gives me the right to insult our soldiers by denouncing the use of armed weapons? Where was I when the emergency was imposed? Why don't I just accept it that the Congress has paid me to write this? This is a statement of anti-national conjectures and I must be immediately packed off to Pakistan.
Well, so be it. But just so you …

The India in Intolerance

By the time this message will be read, a lot of dust would have settled over the entire Aamir Khan and 'intolerance' issue. A lot of you would have already formed opinions, not wanting to read anything contradictory. Many others would still be wondering if this 'issue', if we may call it that, really deserved all the attention that it was provided. In either case, I will take this opportunity to speak out loud and give voice to my two cents. You may need patience to go through this post entirely and if you reach the end, feel free to agree or disagree. It is your right- inalienable and indestructible.

1. "This country has made Aamir Khan. He should be thankful to it"- Allow me to crash your icy castle of high hopes, but Aamir Khan became Aamir Khan because he worked his ass off to be where he is. He has had his fair share of struggles and has dealt with them successfully. He may not be a 'common man' now, but there was a time when nobody knew him. The…

"They are Pure and Pious"

Image
How many times have you stopped by a traffic signal with its bright red light glaring at you? Ordering you to quit doing whatever it is that you are doing and at the same time, daring you to disobey it. You know you have to follow its instructions, restricting your movements according to its whims and fancies or else the outcome would not be pleasant. You stop when it orders you to stop and you go when it orders you to go. Try violating its command and gear up to face the consequences. If the feeling is familiar, dear friend, you have been 'Radhe-zoned'. Now, this word might appear to be a new one, but it has had a long history which has spanned regions and religions, men and women, times and tides and has yet survived the vagaries of sanity and justice. And contrary to its origin, it does not just include Mother Radha. It carries within its ambit the likes of Father 'I will give you Hope, you will give me sex', Brother Monosodium Glutamate and numerous others who, if …

Battered, Bittered, Bettered.

Image
At the outset, let me clearly state that this is not a success story. This is a journey. If you are here to look for guidelines, motivational quotes or any sort of encouragement regarding UPSC preparation, I would, in all probability, be disappointing you. And yet I feel the need to narrate my experience. Not because I want others to take lessons from it. But because I want others to avoid what I didn't avoid and pursue what I couldn't pursue. This is merely a story of hope, of patience, of isolation and at the most, of perseverance.

It all began in the summer of 2002. I'd just come back from the boarding school after having finished my matriculation. The days of disciplined life were thankfully over. No more 6'o clock rousers or 9'o clock preps. Home was heaven. Or at least it felt so, until my father dropped the bombshell, "What now?". Frankly, I had no clue. I'd been so engrossed in my everyday routine, board examinations and declamation contests …

The Modi Mirage.

Image
The constant clutter surrounding Mr.Modi and his inevitable ascendance to 'The Chair', is only getting louder. The sounds which previously pleased the ears, are gradually turning into a desperate noise. Turn on the Television, Log on to the Internet or Read a Newspaper- everybody seems to be espousing the cause of Mr.Modi's Prime Ministership. Or so it seems. In the hullabaloo, voices of dissent and varying opinion are consistently being overlooked, stifled and suppressed. While India stands on a precipice- choosing its side amongst a Communist Left, a Socialist Center and an Anarchist Right- its citizens are left to deal with massive corruption scandals, the resultant political bickering and frequent parliamentary disruptions. Amidst the chaos, Narendra Modi appears to be the only sane choice! He is a strong man. His oratorical skills are polished. He has made Gujarat prosper. Yes. He can indeed lead us towards a new Revolution, can't he? This line of thinking has ass…

The final nail - My UPSC interview

Image
As I begin to write this, I wonder how much and how far would I be able to do justice to what actually happened. There was so much to digest, so much to understand and so much to decipher, that a word-by-word recall becomes improbable. However, I will try to reproduce the interview to the best of my ability so that those, who reach this stage at some point in their lives, can read, derive their own conclusions and thus, benefit.
At the outset, let me do away with the details of how we were directed into the waiting hall and asked to produce our certificates for verification. Let me also not talk about how anxious everyone else looked and how most pretended to either read a newspaper or indulge in light talk. Within, we were all jittery. We just didn't want it to show on our faces. I was 23rd in line to be interviewed. The wait for my turn to come was more ethereal than eternal. Finally, the time came. The clock struck 4 and I was ushered into the board room. Quite unlike my expe…