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Sunday, November 30, 2008

Dumb, Dumber: Patil & Deshmukh

They can’t get any stupid than this.

While the citizens of Mumbai (and the rest of India) are mourning the tragic terrorist attacks, and the whole political class is trying to find scapegoats to fool the people again; these two leaders of Mumbai came out with two dumbest reactions.

Firstly, reacting on the Mumbai Terror attacks, the Deputy Chief Minister and the Home minister (the minister responsible for inland security) made irresponsible and callous remarks at a press conference.

Mr RR Patil said “bade shahron mein aise ek adh hadse hote rahte hain. (Such small incidents happen in big cities). The statement was aired by local and international media, which earned many brickbats for Mr. Patil.

Next, the Chief Minister of Mumbai (Maharashtra) competed with RR Patil to bag the coveted prize for the dumber politician. Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh whose uninspired leadership during the crisis time was culminated with his visit to the terror hit areas today. His entourage lacked any seriousness, as the Vilasrao Deshmukh walked in with film director Ram Gopal Varma. Ramu was known for his movies on terrorism and underworld. It all appeared as if RGV was surveying the terror sites for his next project.

At least Ram Gopal Varma was sensible enough to make an immediate press statement to clarify that his visit has nothing to do with any film making but he indeed visited the sites as a concerned citizen.

And lo behold, Finally, Laloo Prasad Yadav is catching up with the Patil & Deshmukh for the dumbest award. He reportedly made a press statement that the opposition role in the terror attacks should be investigated.

God, save my country!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Home Minister Shivraj Patil Resigns

The much awaited political casualties started coming out. The first head to roll is of that of Indian Home Minister Shivraj Patil.

Shivraj Patil is under lot of flack for his inaction over the past one year as Indian cities were continuously bombed by terrorists.

It was speculated yesterday, when the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called for a meeting of officials and the Home Minister Shivraj Patil was not invited for the same.

Lets hope it is the beginning and all the inefficient heads will voluntarily get out of their offices

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

England Abandons its India Tour

In the wake of the gun fight and blasts in the city of Mumbai, ECB has called off England's ongoing tour of India.

England was scheduled to play 7 ODIs with India in the ongoing Hero-Honda Championship. India won the first 5 ODIs of the series and is leading the series 5-0.

The next two ODI matches were scheduled to be played at Guwahati & New Delhi. After the ODI series, England was supposed to play in a practice match at Baroda and a Two Test series, one each at Ahmedabad and Mumbai.

Today’s terror attack is very close to the venue of the scheduled second test match at Brabourne Stadium in South Bombay.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Beat the Bangalore Traffic, Infosys incentive to employees

Last week, the JD (S) party organized a rally in Bangalore. The rally added to the woes of traffic jams of Bangalore. Much to the chagrin of the troubled commuters, the JD (S) chief & former chief minister of Karnataka Kumaraswamy, Gowda came heavily on the urban & IT lifestyles of bangaloreans.

While these mindless politicians add more trouble to the already congested Bangalore roads, some sensible acts seem to be coming from the industry in an attempt to solve the traffic problems.

Infosys Technologies in Bangalore started an incentive to its employees who reach office as early as 8 AM. The initiative is a collaboration of Infosys and Stanford University. Titled as INSTANT, the initiative runs as follows:

* An employee who reaches office by 8AM will get 1.5 points a day
* Those who reach between 8AM & 8:30AM will get 1 point
* Those who earn at least 20 points a month will be eligible for a lucky dip
* In the lucky dip, two random winners are selected and given an award of 12,000 each
* Four other consolation prizes of 6,000 will be awarded through a random pick

This is truly an innovative way of beating the Bangalore traffic. As most of us know that the morning traffic picks up from 8 AM and reaches its peak around 9AM, it is very convenient for the employees and other commuters on road. Above all, the employees can seek a flexible work hours and can plan to reach home early too. Now, that is a double whammy!!

Did Dhoni offered to quit on selection disagreement

The selection of team for the 4th and 5th ODIs with England, to be played on 23-Nov-2008 and 26-Nov 2008 has caused enough drama.

First, there was a strong disagreement between Captain Dhoni and the National Selectors on the selection of speedster R.P. Singh. Then there was the news that Dhoni offered to quit. It followed with a quick denial from both quarters in the press. And Finally, Dhoni says in the press that “the fact that the closed room discussions are leaked into press is disgusting”.

As usual, BCCI rubbished the news and claims that everything is hunky dory. BCCI's personnel Rajiv Shukla said "The reports are baseless and we cannot comment on such reports. There were no differences between the selectors and Dhoni".

However, insiders say that the rift was so apparent that BCCI President Shashank Manohar was forced to interfere and sort out the issue.

Pakistan Bomb Blasts near Gaddafi Stadium

It indeed was a security concern for the touring cricket teams to Pakistan. Three blasts occurred near the Gaddaffi stadium in the Punjab Institute of Language in the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore Saturday night.

At least three people are injured in the blasts and buildings around the stadium area are damaged. A music show was going on in the nearby Al-Hamra Complex when the bomb blasts occurred. The injured are shifted to a nearby hospital.

People around the area are panicked and rushed to save themselves. Police have cordoned off the area and investigations are underway.

Ashutosh Kaushik wins Big boss, Raja Choudhary second

Finally, Ashutosh Kaushik bagged Rs 1 Crore by winning the Bigg boss title for season 2. Raja Choudhary, a Bhojpuri filmmaker, came a close second.

Ashutosh, the 'dhaba' owner from Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh, thanked the voting public and Rahul Bhaiyya (Rahul Mahajan) on his victory.

The last one week of the show had been interesting with its twists and turns. First the inmates tried to break the rules. Then Rahul exited voluntarily. The remaining three, Ashutosh Kaushik, Raja Choudhary, and Zulfi Sayeed apologized for their misdeed and remained in the final race. Later, they had another inmate for a day when the last year contestant Ravi Kissen, the Bhojpuri superstar, entered the house.

The final surprise was, the entry of Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar on the final day. Akshay announced the winner of Bigg Boss season 2.

Monica Bedi, Payal Rohtagi, Rakhi Sawant, Debojit, and Ravi Kissen entertained the audience prior to the final.

Rahul Mahajan won the Bada Dilwala award, an Aveo Yuva car.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

PSU Pay Revision – Salary Hikes

In an attempt to prevent the exodus of talent from Public Sector Undertakings (PSU) to private competition, the Indian Government approved the salary hike for the employees of PSUs. This decision will create a bonanza for 2.5 lakh employees across 200 companies in India.

The new compensation package will be w.e.f 01-Jan-2007. As per the new package, the basic pay of chiefs of central PSUs will go up to Rs 55,000 to Rs one lakh.

The Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday decided on the pay hike, based on the recommendations given by the Second Pay Revision Committee.

The package includes dearness allowance (DA), performance related-incentives and other perks

Considering the elections scheduled for various states and the center, these steps are aimed at pleasing the voters. The central government had already approved implementation of the Sixth Pay Commission for central government staff from September 1, this year

Quick Link:

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

INS Tabar Sinks Pirates at Gulf of Aden

Indian Navy gave a big blow to the pirates in the Gulf of Aden. In an encounter today, Indian Navy’s surveillance and patrol ship INS Tabar sunk the “mother ship” of pirates who are operating in the Gulf Of Aden near the Horn of Africa.

Indian Navy’s stealth frigate INS Tabar, on its rounds for anti-piracy surveillance and patrol operations came across the “Mother Vessel” of pirates 285 nautical miles south west of Salalah in Oman. INS Tabar asked the pirates to stop for investigation. However, despite repeated requests from INS Tabar, the pirates didn’t agree for an inspection and threatened to blow up the naval warship. In an attempt of “Self Defense”, INS Tabar opened fire on the pirates.

The mother ship of pirates exploded with the ammunition that they stored in the vessel.

It truly is another success story for Indian Navy. With the increasing hijackings over the past few months, this particular incident puts a check on the pirates.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Infosys Staff on Sabbatical

Last evening, I spoke to a friend at Infosys who discussed his plant to take a leave for an year and do all the pending things that he's been postponing for an year now.

He first wanted to sign up for a music class. He's been banging his head at Purple Haze in Bangalore for all those Metallica's numbers for the past seven years. Finally, he got a chance to realize his dream and is happy to sit for an hour guitar class every day.

Next he wanted to go and teach at the near by school in JP Nagar Bangalore. Though he's not a great orator, he is fond of teaching and helping all those kids who don’t go to corporate schools.

He wanted to spend his evenings in a nursery doing the gardening and nurturing the small plants. He's been proponent of the thought that all his IT fraternity which polluted the garden city should pay for the damages by actively growing trees.

Finally, he wanted to complete his annual new year resolution for the past 15 years. He will sign up for a gym and burn all the fat that he gained over his overseas trips.

phew! all this while receiving half of his annual salary while he is on leave!

I guess, Infosys' gesture of encouraging its employees to take sabbatical and engage in philanthropic activities is the best to happen to Indian IT workers. The code monkeys will get out of their cubicles and get a chance to engage with the real world!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Changing Values of Indian Journalism

The recent incidents of journalists coming into the news for wrong deeds is casting serious doubts on this profession.

Firstly, there was an ugly incident of an electronic media journalist being attacked by his in-laws. The senior journalist, Karim a news editor & presenter at TV5, a Telugu News channel was attacked at his home by his in-laws. While all the media channels hushed up the news as a solidarity to their fraternity, the details of the whole incident are widely discussed on the internet.

Kareem who earlier worked with TV9, where he shot to fame was apparently involved in many extortion & black mailing incidents. There were rumors that he just survived an attempt on his life from the henchmen of an AP politician. Further, Kareem had been a womanizer, divorced his previous partners and married a fellow news presenter Sirisha at TV9. Shirisha’s parents are against this marriage and had a grudge on Kareem and at an opportune moment they attacked Kareem and pour acid on his face.

What is appalling is, Kareem is not alone in this fraternity. In a different incident in Mumbai, two journalists have been arrested as they allegedly blackmailed a bar owner. The accused in the episode, Ravindra Krishna Rao and Preeti Narayan Kadam found that a local bar owner was indulging in illegal activities of trafficking. However, instead of reporting the incident in the press or to the police, the journalist duo went straight to the bar owner and demanded him to pay a monthly commission (hafta) to them. The bar owner opposed the deal and approached the police who booked the journalists under the charges of extortion.

While I'm typing this, the news coming on the prime time shows a mob beating a student at Ambedkar Law College at Chennai. The police were standing 10 meters away and watching the crowd beat a hapless student. The cameraman/newsreader captured the best possible view of some hapless victims hands and legs broken in front of our eyes.

sick! If you can stomach this news, take a look at the picture at

These incidents pose serious doubts on the whole journalist profession and questions the authenticity of the news that reach our living rooms. Hope good sense prevails and the professional journalists stand up against and expose these rotten eggs among their fraternity.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Teachers Recruitment: Andhra Pradesh GO 363

The Andhra Pradesh government approved the GO 363, which paves way to 33,555 teacher posts to be filled by the ministry of education.

As per the GO# 363, the government will fill the following teachers posts

PET 2206
Bhasha Pundit 3555
School Assistant 27794

Further, 15584 SGTs will be promoted to School Assistant grade

The GO has political significance, considering the elections scheduled in the coming months.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Bharat Ratna for Pandit Bhimsen Joshi

The Indian Government announced Bharat Ratna award to renowned Hindustani classical vocalist Pandit Bhimsen Joshi.

Bharat Ratna, (The Jewel/Gem of India) is India's highest civilian award. The award is conferred as a recognition of highest degree of national service.

Pandit Bhimsen Gururaj Joshi was born on February 4, 1922 in the small town of Gadag district of Karnataka. His father was a school teacher.

Pandit Bhimsen Joshi was trained under famous guru Sawai Gandharva. Over the next few years, Pandit Bhimsen Joshi went on to become the greatest musician in the contemporary Hindustani music.

In commemoration of his Guru, Pandit Bhimsen Joshi started an annual classical musical festival called the Sawai Gandharva Music Festival. This festival is held in Pune every December.

The Bharat Ratna award is a true recognition of this great singer’s service to Hindustani Classical music.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Anil Kumble retires from International cricket

Legendary Spin Bowler and Indian Test Cricket Captain Anil Kumble decided to quit from International Cricket.

As per the reports from national news broadcasters NDTV, CNN IBN and Times news, the ace cricketer is all set to announce his retirement at the end of the on going 3rd cricket test with Australia at New Delhi’s Feroz Shah Kotla cricket stadium.

Indian wicket keeper and one-day team captain Mahedra Singh Dhoni will take over from Kumble as the new captain of Indian Cricket team.

In his illustrious career, Kumble played 132 tests and took 619 wickets in test cricket. Anil Kumble’s statistics are available at

Anil Kumble is only Indian cricketer who claimed 10 wickets in a test innings and is only the second player in the history of cricket to achieve this feat. His home town celebrated the feat by declaring a traffic junction on MG Road in Bangalore as “Anil Kumble Circle”.

Lets wish Kumble great success in all his future activities.

Kumble’s statistics on Cricinfo:

Saturday, November 1, 2008

The concept of India & Indian

Pained by the continuous attacks on christians in Orissa, a friend sent the following picture which shows the essence of the concept called Indian.

How true! Indeed, the concept of India and Indian is a harmonious existence of all life in the universe!