Transition of Thoughts

Weaving thoughts into words

Month: May 2010

The Babas of India!!! – A deadly cocktail of spiritualism, sex, yoga, drugs, women and money!

We are a god fearing country with hundreds of us praying to hundreds of gods and goddesses. We have thousands of temples and things which remind us of god throughout our country across different states, regions, districts etc. And then there are millions of us who still cant get enough of god worship or idol worship or whatever that we worship the so called “Babas” of India.

Its pretty easy to become a Baba actually. Just make some claims about curing people or touch them with ur hand and cure them, give them something to eat and make them happy or just recite some good words, preachings or what not. Once you are successful in convincing hundred odd people, the rest follow. What you need to be is a very good orator who has the power to convince people. And actually convincing a normal Indian especially about health, future and stuff like that is a pretty easy job. Then you have big ceremonies, you give speeches in front of thousands of people, you are invited to big discussions and lo you are the most famous guy in this country who has Z security.

But are they only into spritualism or helping to cure you or talking about your future or helping you relax through yoga? Today, these Baba ashrams across the country are fast becoming centers of sex, drugs, women and above all big money. We are a country of people who easily believe in these so called Babas because we have always been taught that worshipping these babas, gods, going to temple, organizing satsangs and doing anything would help improve our health, future, money whatever. This is the reason why these babas thrive in our country despite charging people a bomb.

But today many of these so called ashrams across the country have become centers for sex and drugs with many foreigners touring them in the hope of finding these drugs. There have been babas who have demanded sex from their devotees from treatment and “consultantion”.

Thats why I say that these Babas as well as these ashrams have become centers of a deadly cocktail of spiritualism, sex, yoga, drugs, woman and money!

Movie Review – Kites

First things first! This movie is probably a first attempt by a Bollywood director to directly target his movie to an international audience. I mean common having a special international version in English (dont understand what does that mean as the Hindi version is itself 60-70% English and Spanish) with the so called “steamy scenes”, and also a realise in 35 new countries where Hindi movies have never been before and also entering the US Top 10 is definitely big stuff!!! Or is it?

Kites starts off with a sequence showing Hrithik in his amazingly toned and fit body training dancers in salsa. He is a happy go lucky guy who marries illegal immigrants who want to get a green card in the US of A and he some good cash. One fine day Kangana Ranaut (really didnt get what did she try to achieve by doing a blink and a miss role!) comes up to him and confesses about her love and he realises that he has hit the jackpot with her dad being the biggest man in Vegas owning the biggest casino. From then on he meets Nicholas Brown (Tony – God he just had one expression on his face throughout the movie! Awful!!!) and he his fiancee Barbara Mori who was (she looks pretty ok) his last “illegal” wife. The subsequent story about their love, high speed chases, action is all a bit too predictable.

There are a problems aplenty with this movie! What I dont understand is why is 90% of the movie in English and Spanish??? I mean even today why are we Bollywood actors / directors so happy to please the Westerners. Why is the West the be all end all of every thing?? The language barrier would have affected the audience in a big big way even in cities. Hrithik Roshan acts ok and has an amazing body and as usual dances well but at many places you do feel that he is trying to woo the international audiences and stake a claim in Hollywood or something and that really does look a bit too over the top. The climax though “different” from the rest doesnt work one bit because you dont feel for the pair, as the chemistry isnt developed well. So sad for a couple whose pairing was talked about for months if not years!

Recently Hrithik said on Twitter that Indians are used to Biryani but they should try pasta also which meant that he thinks Indians are used to watching lovey – dovey and happy kind of movies and should accept something different. But Mr Hrithik Roshan, I personally feel theres nothing so different in this movie other than the fact that its an Indian – Mexican love story with 90% of the dialogues in English and Spanish. Another sore point of the movie is the music. Few tunes like Dil Kyun Ye Mera are hummable but they dont register the kind of impact that needs to be registered.

One thing which I did like is the amazing photography of the locales in USA and Mexico. Didnt though such beautiful places existed there.

In the end, I would just like to advise the Indian directors by saying that whatever you guys think about making movies for international audiences, getting Oscars and all that, Indian audiences are the ones who make or break your movies. By saying Indians dont like pasta and like biryani and all such nonsense, you cant hide a “HOLLOW SCRIPT”


Rating – 1.5/5

Is there any value for human life in this country?

An Air India Express flight IX – 812 crashed on landing at the Mangalore airport from Dubai today morning killing 160 of the 173 passengers on board. This is one in thousands or dare i say millions of incidents which happen in our country day in and day out be it terrorism, weather events, shootouts whatever where scores of people are killed or injured. Interestingly most of these can be tackled by effective governance, police forces, people viligance and what not. But do we really learn from each accident or bomb attack or shootout or terrorist attack?

Whenever there is a cyclone or other kinds of natural calamity, our politicians make promises of money, a good water drainage system, proper weather management and what not. But as they say the show must go on, all of us move on with our lives as if nothing had happened at all. When its an air accident, our politicians again make more and more and more promises of money, “improving safety” and above all finding fault with someone or the other. Blaming someone is common to all tragedies whether its an accident or terrorist attack or natural calamity. Its an open secret that the Mangalore airport being situated at Bajpe was good for the politicians and all the stakeholders involved. The fact that they dont care about human life is evident from them sanctioning the shorter runway for international flights. The most horrendous of all statements is that “since no accidents have happened here, its safe!”. Guess these people were waiting for a disaster to happen?

In a terrorist attack or the recent Maoist attacks, there are “again” promises of better intelligence, more defence forces, better equipment n blah blah blah. There’s this stupid way of indicating that no one values human life in this country by this statement – “Though Mumbai has been attacked so many times, it still comes alive and goes about its daily business”. The way they keep putting this statement after each and every tragedy, it just goes to show that people know the so called authorities wont ever do a thing other than do what they do best – TALK TALK TALK and make PROMISES PROMISES PROMISES!!!!

I know you guys would be thinking I am going the usual way of blaming the government. But guys don’t you think at the end of the day its their role to ensure our security and make a stand so that human lives are not lost again in this manner. We can help by being vigilant but they are our guardians. Sadly they have just converted this duty into a BIG BAD JOKE!

Someone rightly says – “In this country, there are so many people, that even if hundreds die in different accidents / incidents in our month, why would the government bother”


The Journey from 05BBT034 to 32235!

For the uninitiated, 05BBT034 and 32235 are my roll numbers at VIT University and SIBM Pune respectively. This day last year was when we left VIT University to pursue our dreams be it work, timepass (as many companies hadnt called till then ;)) or MBA, MS (CAT, GMAT, GRE ;)). We parted with the usual we-will-meet, we will mail, chat, phone and blah blah kind of promises.

Neways even I moved on to pursue MBA at SIBM (Symbiosis Institute of Business Management) Pune. Everyone had said that the college is amazing, the faculty is too good, the college is located on the hills, the alumnus is soooo good everything. All that has been amazing and its been a great honour to study in this institute but somewhere down the line I just feel that still I tend to compare both the institutes which is unfair but I guess after staying for four years at a place, you do feel for it. FC, Enzo, All Mart, QB, Sugarcane juice shop, Juice Land, Gobi 65, Cheese Dosa are some of things which really have no replacement.

I miss the quaint little town Vellore was with we being able to watch movies for Rs 30-40 at Raghavendra. We always had a joke as to how small Vellore was that at the height of the bomb blasts across the country between 2006-08 we felt it was the only safe place in India. Katpadi felt my own after all these years. It felt that am back home whenever I reached back there after coming from home. These 4 years made me fall in love with South India as even today I dont miss the opportunity to go to South India (went twice in last 1 yr :)) at all.

Most of all I miss all my friends the most who made my 4 yrs at VIT. In everyone nowadays I try to see a Mohsin or Girish or Arun or Padhee or Sruthi or Ranju or Anish or Ahalya or all the others whose name I am missing here. It doesnt mean that I dont have any good friends around but yeah guys I guess there’s no replacement for the years we had at VIT.

All this may sound lame and stupid and whatever to certain people. I am sure some will say it happens and life goes on and whatever but at the end of the day I do feel one thing that in graduation one has more of an emotional connection with friends but in post graduation its more of a professional connection.

As they say life moves on and it has. This post is a tribute for all you guys who have made my 4 yrs at VIT the best ever!

Clearing misconceptions of my alma mater – VIT University, Vellore!

I am writing this post after reading a lot of criticism about VIT University over the years since I joined, even before that and even today by a number of people many of them pissed off students while most of them who havent ever studied in this place and just talk crap based on hearsay. Every college and university has a lot of negative points and a lot of good points but it does pain one to see only negative points said about ones alma mater left right and center when it is one of the best places to study in this country! Here are some of the misconceptions which have stuck with VIT over the years –

Misconception #1 – VIT University has paid India Today to rank them no 10 and no 1 private university in India
My take – Common guys! Ok lets take it that VIT has paid them. But none of you are fools to take this ranking and come to VIT just like that. I am sure you must be talking to students, parents and teachers before taking this decision. So then why criticise after joining. The biggest suggestion I have to give all the parents and students is that dont take any of the rankings of any of the colleges seriously. Talk to a lot of people before making a decision

Misconception #2 – VIT University has abortion centers!
My take – This is the most atrocious and nonsensical thing I have ever heard in my entire lifetime. What the hell does abortion centers mean? And when I ask someone, they just say that they “had heard” from someone. Guys! Its a college and if even such things happen, I dont think that this is the first or the last college where such things happen. All kinds of students do exist everywhere. But nontheless as far as my knowledge goes, there has been nothing like “abortion centers” ever!

Misconception #3 – VIT University is a money making machine!
My take – All of us be it students or parents keep criticising VIT University for the money it charges. All of us can pay crores to teach our children in international schools but when sending to one of the best institutes in the country everyone thinks that the college is a money making machine. For your information to all the people out there, in my 4 years of studying at the college I have seen the infrastructure and development and seen how this money is spent on improving it for our benefit!

Misconception #4 – VIT University has strict rules and regulations!
My take – VIT University is the most liberal college in Tamil Nadu probably after IIT in terms of rules and regulations. They are no uniforms and even the gals and guys can freely talk compared to certain colleges in Tamil Nadu where people are punished for even talking. Calling it strict is a joke in itself!

Misconception #5 – The teaching and students are not that great!
My take – As always, there will be some teachers who are good and some who are not that great. One cant always be dependent on them to study. Same goes for the students. I am sure this happens in every college

Misconception #6 – People keep getting suspended left, right and center!
My take – You wouldnt find better, more lenient and liberal pro chancellors than the current ones. Obviously if you do something really bad, you will be punished. But getting suspended left, right and center is taking it too far!

I am sure there may be many more misconceptions but what I have tried to highlight from this post is that dont read some blogs of people or talk to those who are angry with VIT University or who have never ever studied here but want to criticise it. They will give one a biased view of the college. Every college has its good things and bad things. I have just highlighted some of them here. But this post doesnt show that VIT University is the best in the country. AND NEITHER AM I A MEMBER OF THE BOARD OF VIT UNIVERSITY OR HAVE BEEN PAID BY THEM!

Dear Parents and Students,
Make an informed decision before joining the institute. Talk to students, teachers, parents – all the stakeholders. Its very easy to criticise. But see the efforts the management is also putting in.

A proud alumnus!

Update: Calling out all alumni to help future aspirants through this post
When I wrote this post approximately 3 years back, I didn’t know what to expect when people read it. But the fact that this post has been the most visited, commented, voted and searched post on my blog speaks volumes. Whether its positive or negative, comments have flown in thick and fast. A lot many aspirants have also got their questions answered through this post.

Therefore, I would like to take this opportunity to invite VIT alumni from across the world to talk about their experiences at the college (good or bad) through the comments section here. You could also answer questions if any raised by future aspirants on this post. This would go a long way in helping them make important career decisions.

Breaking News – The most misused word in the Indian media industry!

Sad, Happy, Funny, Sensational, Breaking, Interesting – are some of the few words which come to mind when one thinks of news. In India today, there is a thriving industry with more than 100 channels in various languages dedicated to just one thing – reporting news 24 / 7.

So what is breaking news? “Breaking news” was originally supposed to be a term used to describe news which meant something to the people probably an attack (bomb, hijack, terrorist), a very big event such as functions, cricket matches or something which holds great importance to the public life in general. But sadly today this term has been misused to the hilt by each and every channel.

Instead of thriving on giving information to the people and helping them improve their lives, news channels have built themselves on just reporting any kind of news as “breaking news”. Today be it Hrithik Roshan’s marriage or some random person dying in our neighbourhood or Aarushi Talwar’s murder story, everything is reported as breaking news. The way Aarushi Talwar’s story was reported, it seriously became a soap opera. Sadly it just became a trial by the media. Interestingly the story stopped after a few weeks despite no one being found guilty. What it just goes to show is the fact that the media doesn’t care for the public, what it does care for is just TRPs and MONEY!

Take the example of India TV. It should seriously be crowned as the king of breaking news in the world. Amazingly its breaking news includes a swami not eating for 10 days, some creature being found in the Himalayas and stuff like that. How cool is that? They have carved a different opinion about themselves in this industry with such nonsensical crap which sadly the people of our country truly and completely believe. Then you can think of Star News and many more others who stand in front of a screen with some or the other stupid news item written in the background which is the so called breaking news and they keep talking about it for hours on stretch with the so called “experts”.

What one gets to understand from all this is the fact that today, our media industry like all others has just become a hell hole of nonsense. The content of 99% of our news channels is just made with what would bring them the viewers and money rather than anything else. And making everything look like “Breaking News” is a step in that direction.

A real sad story in a country of 1.2 billion people!

Book review – Love, Life and all that Jazz!

Love, Life and all that Jazz is Ahmed Faiyaz’s (Our esteemed alumunus from SIBM Pune = 2004 – 06 batch) first novel. The book is a journey of 4 friends (Tanveer, Tania, Sameer and Vikram) across 6 years from 2003-09. The novel does initially seem to be the run – of – the – mill kinds of novels which we find in our country today among young writers who think they are the next Chetan Bhagat in the making. But as it moves on, you do realise that this guy has a story to tell unlike many others of our generation.

Tania and Sameer have been in love for a long time. She is an interior decorator in Mumbai and both of them find it tough to balance their lives as Sameer goes to do MBA in UK and subsequently work there. Vikram is charming and affluent and a casanova kind of guy who can get a girl very easily but later goes on to do a lot more meaningful and constructive things in life. Tanveer is hardworking and ambitious and also insecure about his life and relationships as he has to cope up with a demanding job, a demeaning boss and the pressure of having to support his family. The rest of the book deals with how their lives intertwine with each other and they end up being the best of friends despite all the issues and problems they have.

Interestingly for a novel, this one is in 3rd person at many places. Initially it felt a bit weird but then it was sounding really good as I read it further. I am sure the story may not sound very appealing to a lot of people especially to the literary connoisseurs, but the fact is that as you read on, it does feel out of life. Thankfully and I guess I am saying this again, there isn’t much of sexual innuendo or sex scenes per se in this. Have always wondered what is the point of lacing a book with a lot of unecessary sex scenes! What I like most about the book is its freshness and the story about friends and how each of them cope up with their issues but still stand by each other and end up at the same place after 6 years from where they started. Yes, the story takes place over 6 years!

If you want a sweet and simple read without any frills, go for this book! I read this book in 4 hours non – stop. One thing is for sure all of you would be able to relate to it at some point or the other!

Rating – 3/5

Afghanistan’s fairytale run to the T20 Worldcup 2010!

From the dirty and troubled refugee camps with the dangers of ones life being always on the danger, in a country where Taliban is very well alive and kicking and ready to execute anyone who doesn’t obey their orders, for people who are struggling in utmost poverty and are not able to eat 3 meals a day, Afghanistan cricket’s mind – boggling rise to the pinnacle of world cricket, the International Twenty20 World Cup in West Indies to compete with 12 other test playing nations (except Ireland) is spectacular to say the least.

Afghanistanis don’t play their home games in their own country even today despite the fact that they have a cricket ground built near the soccer stadium in Kabul (the soccer stadium is normally used by Taliban to execute people) due to the situation in the country. Almost all their cricketers have practiced their skill in refugee camps in Pakistan especially Peshawar after their families ran away from their homeland due to the war like situation.

Afghanistan cricket was recognized by the International Cricket Association just 9 yrs ago in 2001. An interesting irony is that this was the year when the US “so called” War on Terror started their. It destroyed the remaining whatever infrastructure they had. In 2008 they were playing in World Cricket League Division 5 against countries like Germany, Vanuatu and Norway (ok guys these countries play cricket too! :P). So you can imagine where they were in 2008. But in the space of less than two years they have got ODI status, just missed qualification for the 50 over World Cup in 2011 by a whisker and won the Twenty20 World Cup qualifying tournament in UAE. Isn’t this a mind – numbing achievement?

Hamid Hassan, one of their leading fast bowlers has famously compared their team to boxing underdog Rocky Balboa. Afghan cricketers today earn 300 dollars a month, a far cry from Mahendra Singh Dhoni whose earning in millions. But their desire and determination to be successful against all odds has taken them to this level and am sure will take them further. Their coach Kabir Khan reminds me of Sharukh Khan and his team of a bunch of no hopers in the film Chak De India who go on to win the World Cup.

Even if Afghanistan fail to win a single match in the World Cup, they deserve to bask in the laurels of reaching this level itself against all odds. You guys rock!

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