Thursday, December 27, 2007

Welcoming the Stars on Earth

It was just perfect. A perfect movie getting a perfect response. We
all expected Aamir Khan's directorial debut 'Taare Zameen Par'
would be good. But the movie turned out to be just superb.
Something unexpected, atleast after watching the biggies like
Saanwariya and Khoya Khoya Chand. And the response people gave was
also terrific. In fact there was great response for both the

Where 'Taare Zameen Par' collected an overwhelming amount of 15 cr
rupees in the first three days, the other one, Welcome, reached 17
crores. Though, the difference comes from the fact that Taare
zameen Par was released with 425 prints all over the country
whereas Welcome was released with 825 prints.

Taare Zameen Par was a superb movie with almost no boring parts
found in the movie. Though the movie is not a fast-track movie, the
level of detail shown is pretty interesting and is able to hold
people. Welcome has also turned out expectably good except for the
controversial end of the movie which was reportedly 'not liked' by
Akshay Kumar himself.

Anyways, the current status of both movies is great and both are
expected to be superhits or atleast good hits. So finally, the year
ends with a good note for the Hindi film Industry.

Let's see what does the new year bring in next. I'm waiting for
'Halla Bol'. Till then, welcome the stars, the Taare on Zameen.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

My New Blogs

I have started liking it. Blogging. That's what I think of now, day and night. Though, not having net all the times creates probelms sometimes and some of my ideas do not get converted into blogs, but I try.

I got three blogs going at present. The one you are reading is the one I started as a general blog. My first working blog, which has completed months and has posts in two digits.

The second one I launched was a completely business blog that could be understood by any person who might not even have any knowledge of business. It was called Common man's Economics.

The link to the blog is:

The blog contains informations on current progress of market that is supposed to affect the common man, as well as possibilities regarding taxes and all.

My next blog is an altogether new step for me. Its an all Hindi blog in which I try to find out good pages in Hindi available on net. In this blog I have put many popular Hindi stories and Poems.

The blog is called Hindi Panne and the link is:

Please see my new blogs and sned your comments to:

or put them here:



Saturday, December 15, 2007

Test Report

"11 baj gaye!!"
"kya hua?"
"Oh... Sorry Dude, I forgot totally...", my roommate was apologetic.
"Baaki sab kab gaye?"
I was out of bed and in my jeans in just this much of conversation.
"Don't know.."
"Kya kya le jana hai?"
"Take a pencil, and eraser, here they are. And pen and Identity card."
"Ya, kept them."

And I was out, for the test that was imperative for the job I had got in TCS. Now it was 11:10 almost and I was asking the invigilator to allow me as it was important for my job. Finally, he made a call and I was seated in a room with M.Tech. students. I was told I would not be given any extra time.

I really did not need extra time. I needed nothing more than the permission to take the test. And I took my seat.

Thus the test started. Questions were mostly on basics. I kept on seeing my watch and answering. I didn't even know how much time was remaining but had an idea that it would be around an hour, atleast. Soon i came to know there was an hour and half remaining. There were 120 questions on the paper. I was going more than one question a minute attempting every question, irrespective of how many of them I knew. At the time I had 45 minutes remaining, I had the same number of questions remaining.

Finally, the paper ended at 12:15 when in the room of almost 60, almost ten were still there. I gave my paper to the invigilator, and thanked him, came out, directly to my room. When I saw my cell, I saw two 'all the best' messages for the test. I couldn't do anything more than read them and delete.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

भाषाओं से परे, इंटरनेट

हो सकता है कि आप यहाँ हिन्दी देख कर आश्चर्यचकित हों, परन्तु ये एक नयी शुरुआत है। आज इंटरनेट भाषाओं कि सीमा से ऊपर उठ चुका है। अब से कुछ समय पहले तक जहाँ केवल हिन्दी लेखों को कुछ ही कंप्यूटर दिखा पाते थे, वहीं अब गूगल की सर्च भी इंटरनेट पर हिन्दी में ही की जा सकती है। इंटरनेट पर हिन्दी का स्तर यहाँ तक पहुंच चुका है कि अधिकांश शब्दों को टाइप करते समय यह भी ध्यान रखने की आवश्यकता नहीं होती कि कहीं गलत तो टाइप नहीं हो रहा है। आज इंटरनेट पर ऐसे अनेक पोर्टल उपलब्ध हैं जो हिन्दी में समाचार से लेकर साहित्य तक उपलब्ध कर रहे हैं। गूगल में भाषा को हिन्दी पर सेट करके सर्च करते समय हिन्दी शब्दों के विकल्प लिए जा सकते हैं। उदाहरण के लिए यह चित्र देखिए।

इस प्रकार गूगल सर्च अब आपको सचमुच हिन्दी में अपनी आवश्यकता के अनुसार परिणाम ढूँढने में मदद कर रहा है। इसके अतिरिक्त अब विकिपीडिया जैसे पोर्टल भी हिन्दी में अनेक परिणाम दे रहे हैं। उदाहरण के लिए सत्यजीत रे के लिए दिया गया यह परिणाम गूगल हिन्दी से प्राप्त हुआ है।

भविष्य में कुछ और हिन्दी पोर्टल्स के विषय में लिखने का मेरा विचार है। इसके लिए मेरे बिग बिग वर्ल्ड को देखते रहें...


Google has always been a fascination for me, ever since I saw it for the first time I saw the net in the year 2003 after passing my class XII exam. I started using Internet thoroughly from the next year starting properly from Jan '04 and becoming a regular from the July-August of the same year when I got an admission to the college. Thus, I was late to start with the google compared to other students of my age and for the reason I felt I was a late entrant for the other services of google, too, such as gmail and orkut. But later I realized it wasn't so as I had started using both gmail and orkut at the time they were barely an year old.

Today, when I think of the Internet, the first thing that comes to my mind is Google. I have not the seen the net of pre-Google age and therefore, I reasonably do not know about many search engines other than Google. But today, its not just the search engine that makes me think of the Google. Today its Orkut, Gmail, Blogger and Adsense. Today its the Google Desktop search I find my songs with. And Picasa with which I organise the bunch of pictures on my computer.

Of all the services of Google, I found Orkut the second best, after the Google search, of course. Orkut has been a contacts list, a friend finder, a great time pass and a lot more to me. I searched the names of the old contacts I had lost , and found them. I went to forums and discussed about colleges when I needed knowledge about colleges for my nephew's admission, and i have chatted scrapping endlessly to one friend or more at times when I didn't have messengers with myself. Though, I still think there are many poeple who do not know how they can use Orkut for various important purposes.

Then, there has been Gmail, providing services at a level where more secrecy is required. And an embedded messenger which must have made many people use a messenger for the first time, who have not been old users of the Yahoo messenger. In those times, the Yahoo messenger was almost the only platform for people who used to chat and as I wasn't a user of the YM, I thought I'd never been into chat, but Google guys did that, and seeing a small chat box in my mail window, I started chatting, which went on and on.

Later I started using Blogger and Adsense. Actually I had tried them both earlier too but I wasn't as regular on the net. Also, the limited availability of net has always been a constraint with me.

Anyways, however much or less of the net I use, whenever I open the browser, the first letter I type in the address bar happens to be 'O', for orkut, as long as I am not 100% conscious that I'm there on net to do something very specific and important, other than Orkut. And even in those cases, half the times, the site happens to be Gmail or Google home.

In short, I cannot think how will the Internet be and what shall I do on the net if only the services of Google are not there. And, being an addict i am, should I call myself a net addict or a Google addict?

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Just a Coincidence?

A few days ago I saw an article titled 'Identity Redefined' with a tagline going as 'Re-branding seems to be the new mantra for telcos to make their presence felt'. It was the latest, November 2007 issue of a magazine called 'Voice and Data' from the CIOL group. I was interested seeing an article on a subject I have also written on.

I had written my article 'Changing Colors of Mobile Telephony' on almost the same subject in September this year. So interested, I took up the magazine and started reading. But there was something more in store for me. As i saw the picture they had used, can't tell whether I was surprised or shocked. The picture they had used was exactly the same as the one I had used in my article, in which the Hutch dog asks, 'Will they paint me red?'.

Think it should be a coincidence, but no big deal if somebody is inspired by my blog to write the article. In that case I should be happy that people are reading, but I was simultaneously sad that there are people who are paying so much to read the same thing I have provided here. (The magazine costs Rs 50 per issue and you can't even read the article online until you're a registered member)

Anyways, all I can do for now is wonder if the similarity of article and picture are a result of some guy copying from the net or is just a coincidence?


Friday, November 23, 2007

Will My Candidiate win this time?

It was the Indian Idol (first one), when the series started. I supported Amit Sana. Cause according to me, he sang better than Abhijeet Sawant. And Amit lost.

Then I happened to support Karunya from the very first time I saw him, in his piano round. Because generally I don't get to see all these shows in the hostels. I find wherever its possible to find them, though. The guy reached the finals. But lost there to some Sandeep Acharya who hasn't probably sung a single song in a movie.

Then there were two shows going parallel. In fact three, of which, the two ended earlier. The two were Sa Re Ga Ma Pa and the Indian Idol 3. I loved Saregamapa and was a Big Fan of Amanat since the day I heard his Mitwaa, though I had liked many of his songs earlier also. But Mitwaa he sang had a real substance in it. It was one song that I found better than the original, and surprisingly for me, Farha Khan also said the same. Though I am not a fan of hers, when she said so, I liked it of course.

But as it goes, Amanat also lost.

And on the other end, there was a winner called Prashant in the Indian Idol 3, the guy I expected to be out in the second round. Just because at that time he was not at all doing what others were doing, prepare. The guy was simply tensed, having problems with his partner.

Emon, the guy I hoped would be out soon, as all my favorites were, was out as the 2nd runner up.

Now starts the story of the Voice of India. I never used to watch the show, as I used to see Saregamapa even if I got some chance to find TV in the hostel. But one day, when I was in Bangalore at my cousin's home, while surfing channels, I just liked a Sardar guy singing a song beautifully. I simply loved the way he sang. I don't remember the song, but from that time I kept some track of the VoI too, though I lost track more than I kept it.

Finally, it was the time of final when I came to know that the Sardar guy, Ishmeet, was in the finals. I was happy that I wasn't wrong in thinking the guy was great. Then I found the other guy in the finals was Harshit.

Oops! Harshit!!

Well, I liked the way he sang, but not that much. Most of the times Harshit sang and I saw, I felt he took some time to pick up the soul of the song, noticed for the first time in Hare Krishna Hare Raam. And then, he looked playing tricks at times. Eventually, I didn't like the guy and kept on to Ishmeet only, as he has been singing really good since the first day I thought.

And then, yesterday I saw the current results, before every break, which came as:

South zone: Harshit 73%, Ishmeet 27%,
West zone: Harshit 70+, Ishmeet 20+, (forgot exact figures)
East zone: Harshit 70%, Ishmeet 30%,

So after three breaks, I was sure my candidate is going to lose again, until I found the power of north. The North zone figures said, Harshit 40% and Ishmeet 60%. Adding up to a final figure of 49% for Harshit and 51% for Ishmeet.

First of all, it was surprising to see that North's difference of 20% was able to cover up all the 40+ %age difference of the rest of India.

Secondly, it will be surprising if a candidate I support wins.

I hope, this time.....

Bomb Blasts! Again.

LUCKNOW: Bomb blast occurred in Faizabad, Varanasi and Lucknow area here on Friday. A blast occurred in the Varanasi Cantonment area. Another blast outside the Civil courts in Lucknow. The blasts occurred within five minutes of each other. Around six people are reported injured. Around seven lawyers have been injured in the blast outside the Faziabad Civil court. One lawyer is reportedly dead. [From: Multiple blasts in Uttar Pradesh, 23 Nov 2007, 1327 hrs IST,INDIATIMES NEWS NETWORK]

From Mumbai to Uttar Pradesh, no place is safe it seems. It was Mumbai in 1993 that hit the worst, and since then, it has been hitting, time to time. Be it October 2005 New Delhi blasts killing more than 50, July 2006 blasts in Mumbai again, August 2007 Hyderabad blasts killing more than 40 people, or October 2007 in Ajmer, every bomb blast has made clear how unsafe we are. Whenever we are out on the road, in any town or city, we can be a target of terrorists. It can be a cinema hall, an amusement park, a Dargah, a temple or a mosque, a train, or even a government office.

And I really wonder if we can do anything about it. A cycle is there in a court premises and suddenly a blast is there and the lawyers say the police should have been there earlier. But it doesn't look like anybody could really do a thing about it.

Of course, Rahul Gandhi was saved from kidnappers as it was claimed. But I do not think we shall be able to see our country planning in way such that we can save our public also.

Seems that we can only hope. Hope that the next bomb blast doesn't take place in our neighbourhood or in our town, our city, and if possible, our country. Just hope.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Hopes. To hell and back!

It was heart breaking. I had expected a lot from No Smoking and Saanwariya. But it so happened that I did not go to watch No Smoking. So many people talking bad of the movie. And then it was the Diwali surprise. In fact a Diwali shock. Saanwariya. My first 'first day first show' in life. And the way it went, all I could do was suggest my friends not to go for Saanwariya, who eventually did, and came back during the interval.

Well, that happens. Because after fifteen days I got a chance to sit in front of the Idiot box with the remote in my hand. And I was again in the same world. I was in hopes again. With some things looking promising and some interesting.

Let's see what all it was.

Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal. The first thing that's coming. Hope a good movie if not exceptional. Billo Rani is already looking beautiful in the promos of the movie. The soundtrack is a typical Pritam mostly. The song Ishq ka Kalma is simply an extension of Bhool Bhulaiyya's Hare Krishna hare raam and must be a hit.

Aaja Nachle. The comeback of Madhuri. And a worth watch cast of Kunal Kapoor, Ranveer Shorey, Konkona Sen Sharma and Yashpal Sharma. The songs are pretty good. The Title track with its better version (reprise as they call it) and Soniye mil ja are worth listening.

Taare Zameen Par. The much awaited debut of Aamir Khan as a director. Not that Aamir had made some announcement years back or something. But the fans of Aamir Khan, who are of the belief that Aamir Khan makes directors (actually said in comparison with SRK who works for big name directors), had been waiting for the Khan to direct a movie. And now that its coming, its really seems so that Taare Zameen Par is gonna be a great movie. Let us wait for December 21st.

Khoya Khoya Chand. Not a hit to hope for. Even the songs are not going to be hit as much as I heard. But the movie should have some stuff, hopefully.

Dus Kahaniyaan. A collection of 10 short stories which will hopefully be worth a watch. the movie is directed by 6 directors, a record in the indian film industry I hope. The promos of the movie hardly show anything but still look good.

And then comes the hit of the year, as far as I can see. WELCOME of Akshay kumar, his yet another flick with Katerina Kaif. The cast goes Anil Kapoor, Nana Patekar, Firoz Khan, and finally, Mallika Sherawat. The Nadiadwala movie seems to be all ready to be a hit at the box office. Songs are good with Anand Raj Anand doing all music-lyrics-singing work.

And then we shall be seeing Atul Kulkarni-Rituparna Sengupta's Gauri, a probably flop Akbar Jodha of Ashutosh Gowarikar, and a lot more. Just in the hope they are good.


Friday, November 9, 2007

This Diwali No Blasts...

Saanwariya. One of the longest movies of I've seen. I mean, I was waiting for the movie to end at times. Actually it was about expectations. I liked the movie in many places but I do not think many will like it. I could even listen to people saying, "Why did he make such a movie?", followed by, "Why did he Make the movie at all?". As I came out I suggested people to go for Om Shanti Om. And came to know that Om Shanti Om was also a fused bomb. So, with two blockbusters going down, this diwali even the film industry is not interested in crackers it seems.

Well, Saanwariya was a huge disappointment to be true. It was just a play, going on in some unknown place, at some unknown point of time. Just with the beauties of cinematography and music. But how long can a movie go on them? Even on the few beautiful scenes the director has filmed? The movie lacks a solid story. Or maybe its something I do not understand, in terms of moviemaking. But one thing is for sure. Saanwariya comes as the weakest SLB movies till date and there is no justice done to the big names associated to the movie.

The only good thing coming out of the movie is Ranbir. Named Ranbir Raj in the movie, Ranbir enacts Raj (Kapoor) at times in the movie, and seems to be breaking into the Hritik Roshan market very soon. Even the voice seems so similar. And the guy is a great dancer and actor, besides the looks that were of course clear from much earlier.

Monty's music has been of great quality but doesn't show much new except the title song which is as good in the movie as it was when u heard it for the first time. The half sung Saanwariya in the start tells that the movie awaits another rendering of the song and it is superb when it comes.

Anyways, when it comes to recommendation, I'd suggest u better wait for some more time, maybe Madhuri's Nachle brings some kick, or Goal makes u dance. Currently, Taare Zameen Par looks somewhat fresh and promising. Akbar-Jodha seems to be yet another flop as Hritik doesn't look very good as Akbar.

Filhaal, Saanwariya is over. And the exams are about to start for me.

Harshit Gupta

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Cable and Wireless

Indian telecommunication industry is going at a pace today where we cannot afford to think what happened yesterday. All we can think about is what is happening today and what is going to happen tomorrow.

First telecommunication meant radio, television, then in its true sense, telephones, and then, mobile phones. Even today when we think of telecommunications, first thing that comes to our minds is a cellular phone. But the fact is that today telecommunication means so much that we cannot even visualize instantly. Telecommunicationhas gone back into wires, and more amount of data than ever before is in the air simultaneously, with the existing and coming wireless technologies.

With the BSNL IPTV already in the market, and Airtel and others all set to launch theirs (Don't know if any other operator has launched IPTV), the telecommunications field has already got a new face, one that combines the information-centric internet and environment-primary television.

Internet on the go is no more a dream either, for those who really want it. With the PCMCIA cards and beautiful 1-x CDMA modems coming to a price range affordable for the middle-class, you can now find students working on their net-connected-laptops, which was used to represent business class flyers by airlines not long ago.

And then comes the Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access, better known as Wi-Max. The current year has seen Wi-Max starts from BSNL, Aircel, VSNL, Bharti, Reliance, and Sify. Among these, Bharti has already deployed its services in eleven cities and is planning to expand, and a lesser known Aircel has invested $1 bn in the upcoming technology.

Now we shall talk about another facet of telecommunication. The direct-to-home (DTH) service, once under the monopoly of DishTV, and later extended to DDDirect+ and Tata Sky, is soon expected to see a number of new operators with Bharti, Reliance, Videocon, and Sun TV all set to jump into the market, starting a new competition altogether.

Interestingly, DTH is a segment where we find only one or two operators in a place almost anywhere in the world. But here, four new operators are planning to start their services in a short span of time, with 3 operators already existing. And actually, I still hope they'll all find their market in the world's second largest population.

That's when we say, It happens only in India.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Falling in love, Again...

It's been a number of times I have found myself falling in love. Don't know when it happened for the first time. But when I heard Deewana of Sonu Nigam, I was surely in love. In love with the voice, in love with the music. And then it kept on going. I fell in love again and again. With the same voices. With the music that touched my heart every time I listened to it. On my tape. In grand parties, on DJs. I fell in love with the music of Nadeem-Shravan. And Jatin-Lalit. And above all, of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. The music that makes me feel that love is permanent. Even today, I feel the Kal-ho-naa-ho-heartbeat as if its mine. I still love that song like anything. Feels like it'll remain with me for life. Because u never know what's gonna be there tomorrow.

There have been numerous things in music I have loved. Probably the first song I really 'loved' was 'Ye Dil' from the the remix album Pardes'98 I had. Then came the Deewana-Jaan-Yaad trio of Sonu Nigam, one by one. At that time I felt like he was the best singer, the one who could sing just anything. And truly speaking, I never thought there could be a period like the present scenario in the life of 'the great Sonu Nigam'. It was during my class X board exam, that I used to come back from the exam and switch on the TV, put on ETC, and wait for the song 'Mohabbat kabhi maine ki to nahi thi', as it was a regular on the 'ETC Maalgaadi' those days. I simply loved the song.

Then the time kept up its speed, and yet another favorite came up. It was 'Tum Bin' this time. The title and the 'Koi fariyaad' by Jagjit Singh were the two that still make me remind of the time when I tried to study regularly, putting my tape with me, in a seperate room on the first floor of our house. That was the time when I started buying cassettes regularly, and got almost one cassette a month. That was the time I realized I could believe the brand values, of Nadeem-Shravan, of Yashraj films, of Jatin-Lalit, of Sonu Nigam (in case of private albums) and so on, until I got one bad album from Nadeem-Shravan, called 'Jeena Sirf Mere Liye'. But overall, the results were very encouraging and for a person like me who wanted all the good music before others got it, bought just one cassette a month and bought only original cassettes, I think they couldn't be better, almost.

With the time, things kept on changing gradually. Never drastically or dramatically, just gradually. I loved lots of Hindi music. After contemporaries, I found myself liking Mohd Rafi's songs. Kishor Kumar was always one of the favorites. But after I got into college, I could get as much of the two as I wanted. Like never before. I had my laptop where I could keep all the music I liked. But even before that, when I had been in my first year with no computer of my own, there were several rooms in the hostel where I developed a liking for old songs. And during that one year I became a big fan of Shaan, always listening to his 'Bhool Ja and Other Hits'. Along with 'Phir Milenge'. These two have been of my most favorites. I simply loved them. Actually, those two are the albums that helped me a lot during my first year in the college.
I helped my seniors while they organised a Hindi Antakshari in our college festival, and the next year, in '07, I set all the content and questions of the same thing. That was one period that really told me a lot of things about music I didn't know. I went deep into the histories of musicians and singers. And sometimes, even directors and producers. I always liked to keep track of such things but that time I really gained something. After a long time there was something I had really worked hard with, and that was purely out of my interest. Out of my love for music. Hindi music. Atleast by that time.

In the meantime, my range kept increasing. First I was into contemporary music, then into 70s and 80s. And then came all the Ghazals of Jagjit Singh and now some by Ghulam Ali. And though I liked the old songs, I was not as much into them as I went since came the Moserbaer revolution. I thank Moserbaer a lot, not just for providing CDs for Rs 28, but also for starting a price race in the market which has brought down all the Rs.150 movies much below that. And since then I got a chance to understand the melodies of the old times far better. Today I have a small collection of around 20 movies that include classics such as Pyaasa of Gurudutt, the second costliest movie of collection (Rs.99), and Shri 420 and Barsaat of Raj Kapoor.

Seems I went off the topic. So I was talking of things and people and concepts I have fallen in love with. They always included Amitabh Bachchan, ever since I used to watch KBC. I was a fan of that simplicity. I simply loved that. But very recently, I got a chance to see the outer world of Shahrukh Khan, and even after having developed a soft corner for Shahrukh Khan ever since I saw 'Swades', I never before felt that I liked Shahrukh a lot. But after watching this CD, I felt he deserves what he has. I could relate to it when he told about the feelings he had whenever he sat at the stairs of some stage he had to perform at, just before the performance (If u didn't get the sentence, u can try to find the outer world of SRK).

And here comes the latest. I'm falling in love once again. This time its different. And I think I'm gonna enjoy this love very slowly. Because all my life, whenever I loved music and musicians, there was one thing in common. It was in Hindi always. But this time its different, this time its Enrique songs I'm really falling in love with. And that's why I'm gonna take time to understand it. Its just 3 songs of his I have heard properly, but it seems I'm gonna like him a lot. And in such cases, my predictions don't generally go wrong, as long as they're about myself. :)

Saturday, October 13, 2007

How do 70 yrs Look?

Its not been 22 complete years since I'm on the earth. And of the time, starting 6 or so years have been among the once I do not remember a thing about, of course. Just 16 years, and when I think about it, I feel like I have lived a lifetime. Thinking of it, I wonder how do people feel when they live lives of 50-60-70 years. There are number of things I can exactly recall from my past now, even as old as those of the very early '90s. And when I think of them and keep on thinking, it seems to be a never ending chain of thoughts.

I can still go back into the past when in 1991 when I was seeing our old home was being pulled down, to build a new one. I can remember the incidents from my school from class second and thereafter. I remember my friends in school, and teachers. And the prizes I got there. And the beatings. I can exactly tell u when a teacher who had to punish almost the entire class for not completing the homework using the 'kammach' on my hands first because I was just one line short of completion. And the freedom fighter who came to our school on Independence Day, when I was in class VII, and got so impressed with me hosting the program that he sent a book for me the next day.

There have been milestones. Academically (looo...oong back), professionally, personally. Small ones and big ones. Big ones looking small, and small ones looking big. There have been happy times and sad. And those when I didn't know how to feel, to be happy or sad. Probably one such biggest incident was the day when I got my job in TCS. I should have been happy for the job, but I was not. I was more sad than happy because my roommate had not been selected.
There have been people. My family. And friends. And not just them. A family of four people, my parents, my grandma, and me. And then my 8 year younger brother. And then an extension with my retired taauji with taaiji. And then only him, and then, only his room. The room, which had tenants from '91 to '96. First a fighting couple with two small children. And then a singing uncle with his wife and a little daughter for almost an year. The time when probably for the first timed a sad song touched me, probably because of a child's voice there. Aditya Narayan. From Akele hum Akele tum.

And then there happened Kota. Me, out of home. The times I even cried feeling home sick. Well, doesn't happen now. But still, among all the things, I never felt that homesickness was foolish. Kota came with a bunch of new friends. And a new life. A new freedom in life. And new responsibilities. I didn't perform extremely good or something, but the results were not bad. Finally I got a rank where I missed a favorite college of mine by a difference of 2 ranks and reached VIT. A place against which my mom had strict instructions. But I had to be here. Had to have all these people I live with. With the Mohalla. And girls among my friends, for the first time, ever since 1995. That was the last I had been friends with a girl before. Well, life in VIT was something I could write a book on. But there won't be many people reading it. Because college changes you a lot, but my life wasn't half as interesting as that of Chetan Bhagat.

Still, things changed like the roads of VIT. Well, those in my college understand. Its a place where a new road is constructed every two months, and an old one is given some new look almost every fortnight it seems. The person who used to wear a collar button always, almost my identity once, now walks on roads with sleeves up almost always. The view from outside changed. And so did the inner side. The person who used to be tensed like anything for the smallest thing, became the 'fark nahi padta' demon for many friends. And not to forget, a class topper of 12 years became a third man, just a few inches away from the boundary always, be it pass marks or qualifying attendance. Still, its exam tomorrow and having walked on roads for almost 2 hours, I am writing this stuff for more than an hour now.

Well, what I wonder is, there are thousands of such things in my mind, and more. This is what I have lived in these 22 years, or 16, by my calculation. Then how much are the coming years gonna bring me, and how would it look like when I would see my past, if I live past 50, 60 or more.

Probably there is just one answer to it. Keep watching!

Sunday, October 7, 2007


Passions. When filling the Orkut profile almost 3 yrs ago, for the first time I thought if I had any passions. Then I thought that I had a passion called music. Watching old movies is counted in such passions. So is reading poetry and Hindi novels, mostly by Premchand, or Sharatchandra. But then, suddenly I realized that passions should be specific. They ARE specific. Just you have to realize what are the things you do really passionately. It can be anything. Literally anything. And slowly I found out I had lot of such things associated with myself. Called passions.

I love music. Of course. But that is not what I should call passion. When I sing 'Alvida' all alone in my room, that is passion. Well, its not just the song. There are a number of such songs, having one thing in common. All of them being high pitched. Singing high pitched songs all alone in my room is one of my passions. On top priority ones.

Then comes walking. Well, that's another thing that gives me intense relief. Whenever there is some problem, something troubling me, and no one there. Its the best way out. All I need is time. And a road. I can walk miles without reason. And its not that I walk only if I have some problem. I walk even in my college campus. Just for the sake of walking. Alone. Until somebody is found, going in the same direction, or coming from the other. Of course I can change my direction if there is no place I am walking to.

Listening comes next. I do not know if I can put it in the list of passions. But I like to listen. To my friends, relatives, acquaintances, unknown people, just anybody. Hardly does it happen that I am not interested in listening to people. That too, generally if I have something else going on in my mind. Listening to my friends, and my maa, gives me a satisfaction. Some sort of happiness. I listen while sitting in front of the teller(of course), on phone, and even on messages, and emails. I love to do that. And it seems many of my friends find this to be one of my best qualities. (this paragraph was brought to you by Miya Mitthu himself)

And one of the top passions again can be an 'adda'. That's one thing I am gonna miss after my college. Talking everything we can, from the most useless girls of the college to burning problems of the country, from the history of Edwina Mountbetton to the geography of my house on google earth, I find our addas to be one of the really passionate things I discovered during my college. Adda's vary in the number of people. But it can start anywhere while more than two people are free in the night. In fact, after staying 3+ years in hostels, I can say that the hostel nights teach us, two is a company, three is an adda.

Now comes which my friends will most probably count if they're given to count paassions for me. Internet. Well, nowadays I m on a low, online just 8-10 hrs in a week. But those were the days, and those days can come any day, whenever I get a free all night internet connection; the days when I used to be online continuously for 6-6 hrs in a day. Rather in night. I have been online for continuous 8 hrs during the night, just because the official night is that much only, when we used to get free internet. I can, and love to, surf Orkut, for hours and hours and hours. Having been a member for more than 3 years, with more than 400 friends in my friends' list, I still crave for more Orkut. I love to surf various communities, different people's profiles, and sometimes praise or advise them too, though I try to control it most of the time in case of unknown people.

And last one, the one many are afraid of, or pretend to be. Cracking PJs. My poor jokes, my one liners, my venom, what is that they are not called. But I love it. I cannot stand people's talks for long without PJs. Until they're too serious for PJs. And actually, it seems that in my Mohalla, my PJs are my identity.

Well, at times, having a coffee can be one of the most passionate things for me. Even sugar is not required. In fact, it seems I'd like dark chocolate a lot, which I haven't tried much yet. In short, it depends on your personality what passions you have, and your passions make your personality. So if you haven't found out your real passions, go for it.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

18 years gone...

Well, its been a long long time. 18 and a half years. Since I have been going to class. Every morning, or afternoon. In different shifts. For different courses. Learning entirely different things. Sometimes languages. Sometimes maths. For admission, for job, for life. And suddenly I realized a day ago that there will be no more classes after 4 weeks. The practice I have been through for 6-8 hrs a day, 200 days a year, for last 18 and a half yrs, ever since 1989, when I joined Public Montessorie School as a lower KG student. 7 yrs there, and joined MDS Inter college in 1996. again 7 yrs, and a coaching of one yr at Kota. And past 3 and half years in Vellore. And now, the journey comes to a halt. A six months project in the next semester, (no classes of course) and I'll be a guy going to office. Yup, got something. A few classes for training in the company. One last patch still remains. But anyhow, now I'm at a junction in my life. The life we lived in our hostels, is slowly coming to an end. The last CAM (the reasonably-hyped internal exams), the last term-end exams, and then half of us will not be in the college. Thus, the life will start to scatter here only. And after six months..... Well, I do not want to think. But I cannot stop thinking either.

Well, these 18 yrs (change the number according to your schooling) have given us a lot. Those 6 hrs outside homes everyday have taught us more than the remaining 18 hrs at home. I hope that's not the case with college life, though.

And what is next in our future, really nobody knows. We do not know where we will be going to live. And how will the new life be. How shall we adjust there. Probably I would say the way we did here. But truly speaking, its not going to be like that. Workplaces cannot be colleges. Nor are they expected to be. Actually, I do not know what I want from life now. In fact, today I do not know where I belong. The home I have lived in, with my parents, for 17 yrs, or the hostel I stay in, or the place I will be going to. It seems I am lost. Seems like I should listen to 'Musafir hoon yaaron, na ghar hai na thikana'.
Anyways, the best I can do for now is live with peace for the next six months in my college itself, enjoy myself as much as possible, and leave the rest to Him.

Sunday, September 30, 2007


It was around seven when I had left the college campus to get a tablet for my hand in which I felt blood circulation was not proper since the time I had slept on it, two days ago. When I reached the Chittoor Bus Stand, the centre point where we go for many things, and where we used to go for almost each and every need 3 yrs back, I saw my friend Manohar from auto, caught him getting into a juice shop, and we had a juice each. Meanwhile he asked me why I had come there and was I going to the Bombay Anand Bhavan. I told him I had come there for the medicines as the college medicine shop was closed it being Sunday. Then I realized that there were hardly any chance of having a good food in mess as for last four years, the Sunday dinner has been constantly bad despite all the good and bad changes the menu has been through. So finally I decided to take a turn towards the BAB as I got my tablets. When I reached the place, it was 8 and the place was really crowded, with no tables available at all. I took the token and reached the counter. The guy there told that it was too crowded and the pizza I had ordered would take 20 mins. I had ample time so didn't mind. In fact the guy seemed pretty much friendly and I told him that I would come after 20 mins to get both the pizza and the shake together.

I came out on the main road and started moving to a side road. When I went in, I felt I had never realized that this place too had a residential area. I got a feel of the newly made colonies of Dehradun (That's the place where I get to live in colonies, except the government quarters of my Jijaji in Bangalore). It seemed so much of my own; something I could relate my past with. Well, due to stray dogs there, I didn't think of staying there for long and went back to see what all was going on in BAB. The condition was the same and in the ten minutes almost nothing had changed. So I started again on the main road. Walking, I felt that it had started raining, drops here and there. I wished, I really wished that it should rain, rain heavily. But it didn't. It kept on the same way for around ten minutes and then almost came to a halt. The time I entered BAB was 8:20. I was right in time. The person asked me, "aa gaye, actually humne order doosre ko de diya". But there was no problem as I still had lots of time so I asked him to get another one ready. He gave it in less than 5 minutes, during which I came to know that there was the same song going on which I had been thinking of while on the road just a few minutes back.

Pizza came, with the shake. I had them both and came out. No signs of rain it seemed. I was disappointed. Then a drop, and after a few seconds another drop. I didn't want THIS rain. I wanted it to rain, didn't want a few drops from the sky. I went on the road, slightly frustrated, when I saw something in front of me. I could see it was 'raining' below the next lamp on the road. I could not understand for a few seconds what was going on. I thought whether to move ahead or not. And then I realized, I wanted this rain. And even if I don't go there, it will come here. So I moved towards the rain, and the rain towards me. It was a raining heavily. It was stormy. After walking for a few seconds, I started almost running. Probably for 100 meters or so, and I was almost completely wet. I moved to a tin shade on one side of the road. Switched of the cell, and remembered God. And some more people. I was feeling so satisfied that my eyes became wet. Though it hardly mattered, because I myself could not feel it against all the water that was there. And then I felt that I was leaving something I shouldn't have. When God had given me the rain I had asked for, I should take it completely. I went to the road once again. And this time, I think I moved even less, but the rain filled me tiptoe. Now i could feel the rain with me completely. This time I stopped under another shade, thanked God, and then seeing the condition of the people there, asked God that I had what I wanted, and requested Him to stop the rain for them all. And not more than two minutes later, I started from there as the rain started fading away. And soon, the rain almost stopped and the lives of people started again.

I caught an auto and came to the college. I had seen almost a miracle. And though I could not help thinking how it happened, I am not going to ask that to anybody, as somebody has said, "Nobody questions a miracle."

Friday, September 28, 2007

When I felt something!

This very small incidence was one of the memorable ones of my life. An incident that I felt while being all alone, with nobody there to share except my computer screen. And still, I was so stirred within.
It actually happened when I got Abhijeet Sawant's second album, Junoon. I liked just one particular song and kept on listening to that one only for many days. Usually I try to find all the details of a song when I get it but this one I had got from my friend Vishal and I was listening without any idea of who all were the composers and producers etc. One day Vishal came and asked me if I knew who was the composer. I told him I didn't know but said that the song I liked seemed to be from Mithoon. Two days later when I was online I just recalled that I had to find the composers of the album Junoon. I googled junoon composer and found there was some Amit Trivedi who had composed the album. Of course I didn't have any problem with that. I just kept on seeing more results out of my interest, until I suddenly stopped at "Guest composer Mithoon". It was for the song I used to listen. Ek Shakhs Raaste Mein...
I suddenly felt on top of the world. I was feeling like I really knew something of music. I felt I was not an amateur anymore. I was learning. And I will try not to stop ever.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Changing colors of mobile telephony

Vodafone boxer now?
Indian mobile telephony, though it has been there for a longer time of course, came to a real existence with the advent of Reliance India Mobile, A dream of Mukesh Ambani, something that brought the very concept of cellphone for every person, a company that gave away cellphones for as low as 500 bucks, and is still providing people with cellphones at the lowest rates. Though, the name of the company is different now, the owner has changed, and so is the color.
if you remember, there used to be a number of small companies in the early 2000s most of which had started during '96 to '98. Namely, Escotel, BPL, Oasis, Spice, Orange, Essar, Aircel, Hutch, even Airtel. But then times changed and BSNL and then Reliance came up with services, threatening small companies to an extent and thus came the era of M&A, that is, Merger and Acquisitions in the mobile telephony, and the colors really started changing. With this new era, a race started off, prices fell, fundas like airtime came to an end forever, and the number of users grew exponentially. From thousands to lacs and finally, to crores. In this game of M&A, Airtel turned out as the largest company, crossing Reliance and BSNL both. In the race of getting the top position, Airtel bought Oasis (Rajasthan), Aircel bought RPG cellular (Tamilnadu), though it is itself a small entity, and Hutch made a pact with Essar. The light colored Escotel was bought by the relatively new Idea cellular and changed to a beautiful light blue. Whereas the orange Orange and orange Hutch changed into a green background pink when an egyptian partner came in. The Hexacom's Oasis, active in Rajasthan, turned from a light blue (as long as I remember), turned a Vibrant red when Airtel bought it. Last year, the blue circle BPL also changed into Hutch. But one of the major changes was brought by the split between Ambani brothers when the dull looking Blue-green RIM was converted to a Vibrant red-Sky blue logo of ADAG with two big A's in the centre.

Old Reliance: RIM New Reliance Mobile: the ADAG icon

And now, the Hutch puppy that followed us for so long, has been given a new shining bright red home by Arun Sarin's Vodafone, changing the ages old logo of India's big brother company, Hutch, to a new Red comma, seen majorly on the England Cricket team's t-shirts till date.
Anyways, happy new home, dear puppy!

Monday, September 17, 2007


How many languages I know??
Well, seriously, some 3. Hindi, English and some HTML.

But if I start counting all I have some acquaintance with, I'll come to know that I know a number of languages. The number goes in 2 digits for sure. Lets start counting.
English, C, C++, Hindi, HTML, Urdu, Java, Sanskrit, Tamil, French, Assembly language, Bengali, Gujarati, C# and used to try some Kannada as well.
Well, the story seems interesting to me. And pretty much unbelievable to people. That I come to know when I see their reactions.

I started learning Hindi at home. From a newspaper called Amar Ujala, I learned the first letter of Hindi 'a'. (It sounds nearly the same as the English 'a') Started English too at home, and of course did them properly when joined school at an age of 3. Then came the third language of my life. Urdu. It was an optional in my school and mostly members of Muslim community used to study Urdu. Thus, I was reading 3 languages at an age of 3, while in Kindergarten.

The 4th one took an entry in std II. With Sanskrit, I started 4 languages at a time. I myself do not know how I used to do that. But I know I never felt it very difficult. Then, after 3 yrs, I left the school, to join a high school (with +2), and left Urdu too.

But in 7 yrs, I had got enough not to be forgotten easily and I still can read Urdu somehow, having completely left it 11 yrs ago. Here came a large gap and I lived with a knowledge of 4 languages which seemed like an achievement at school. After completing my +2 in 2003, I left for coaching so that i could get into some good engineering college. In kota. Kota is a place famous for that. Those who have lived there know about the Kota life of course. Nothing new of course, in terms of languages.

And after the one yr coaching, I went to DA-IICT in Gandhinagar, Gujarat. That was a turning point. Gujarati was a language which looked a lot like Hindi. So I started trying. As a result, during my 2 day trip, I didn't get the college, but got something new. A language. And a confidence. That I could learn a script without any books, even in two days.

After those 2 days I landed in Bangalore (now Bengaluru), Karnataka. The language of the place is Kannada. And nearly everything that is owned by the government displays Kannada. I started trying again and got some letters of Kannada soon. No books again! This time I was delighted with my achievement as it was not that easy. Kannada was a tough language for me compared to Gujarati as didn't look like Hindi from any corner. 15 days later I joined VIT, in vellore, Tamilnadu.

The local language, Tamil, was something I tried and tried and tried. But it seemed nothing went right. I could not get even 3 letters in the first one month. But I wasn't lost. I was pretty much determined that I would get this too. In fact, once a friend of mine, Apoorv, who has been living here since birth, and speaks some Tamil too, challenged me saying that he couldn't learn the language in 17 yrs. I asked for a yr's time. And voila! When I gave my job interview, I knew Tamil, at least enough to convince my interviewer that I knew the script. In fact I had learnt a lot of it in just 7-8 months.

And all this happens without any books. Some of my friends ask, how? Here, I'll answer, after a break. :)

Friday, September 14, 2007

Once again: Judge

Well... I never thought there would be one such day. First, the friends of my class made me the judge for Besuregama, and now, this time officially, I was judging a 'kavi sammelan' on the Hindi divas, that is, today, 14th September. I had no idea I could be a judge in two events in one week. Simply a hilarious experience. And once again, I come to know that judging in live events is really tough. The people who always used to say that 'It was a tough decision...' are not joking. They really mean it, seems to me now. This time, I had to judge among 13 people for 3 positions. And after the calculations on the basis of 4 criteria what came out was 5 people sharing top 3 positions.
Though, now I do not remember the poems which got the prizes, I have some idea how the poems were. And how were the people who recited. I still find so many poets who write well but fail to get their credit because of improper recitation, or rather, lack of confidence. And I once again felt that girls do better when it comes to stage performances. I always used to think the same during my days of school while most of the winners used to be girls. (That doesn't mean I never won prizes there)
When I reached the stage to announce the result, I told them what I and the secretary of the organising association (Hindi Literary Association) had talked when I was invited. He had said that judging won't be difficult for me as I had been editor for the college magazine, Splash. But truly speaking, editing is ten times easy. I had to put the 5 best poems/articles in the magazine. And if I liked 6, I had to ask the management for an extra page. Here every single mark was important. So it was an altogether different, much tougher job.
I ended the speech and the program saying that their job was not simple and all these poets/writers had to keep on going, because their pens do not give words to just their own thoughts, they gave words to all those people's words.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


This is my big big world. And here is my experience of the be-sure-gama which took place last Sunday, September 9th.

It was a singing competition, organised by some of my friends, on the tracks of sa re ga ma pa which is being aired on the Zee TV nowadays. The major difference being that we had only besuras and were determined not to have any person with any experience in singing. I was the only one who had once sung on the stage and mind it, I wasn't a contestant. I was a judge.

Well, the plans boasted of a great competition and it turned out to be the same, when the final round came, cause the contestants were looking pretty tensed by the time.

In all we had 7 contestants one of which was our host, Ambuj. The other 6 contestants were Anuj, Ashaf, Devanshu, DD, Manohar, and Sandeep. The 3 judges were Abhishek, Aritra and me, Harshit. The contest had three rounds. In the first round, 2 contestants, Sandeep and Ashaf were eliminated. In the second round, again 2 contestants, Ambuj and DD got eliminated. In the final round, we had 3 contestants, among which, one, Manohar was really an unexpected candidate who had sung an exceptionally well (at our level) 'suno na suno na sunlo na' and surprised nearly all by reaching the finals.

Thus, in the finals, we had three contestants, Anuj, Devanshu, and Manohar. Coincidentally, these three were the people who were the hosts too. In the last round, judges wanted the contestants to sing the types they had not touched yet. So, Devanshu, who had sung a high pitched Rabba(Musafir) and I love u o sayyoni (Aap ka Suroor) was made to sing a lighter 'Kuch saal pehle' from Yaadein. Anuj, having sung two light numbers took 'O Sathi re' (Muqaddar ka Sikandar). And Manohar chose a difficult, 'Tu hi meri Shab hai'.

The end turned out to be pretty tough and the final round ended with a difference of just one mark between the winner and the runner up while there were 3 judges difference of less than half mark per judge!!) Telling us how tough a competition was it. The final winner was Anuj.

After all the contestants, judges were asked to give performances. Aritra presented a sweet 'Raat Kali ek khwaab mein aayi' and won hearts. Abhishek went a step ahead by presenting his own beautiful Ghazal. I sang 'Bin tere kya hai jeena' from 'Woh Lamhe' to end the program.

And now, all said and done, I m thinking that if here, where we have hardly any interest in winning and cannot think of taking music seriously, the environment gets this serious, what might be happening at the national level talent-hunt programs such as Indian Idol and Sa re ga ma pa??