Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Book Review: Chanakya's New Manifesto

Author:  Pavan K. Varma 
ISBN:  978-93-82277-09-5 
Genre:  Non Fiction

Price:  295 ( I got it from Blogadda in a book review program) 
Pages:  248 


Whatever state we are in at present has a direct incentive of our past performance, our present actions based on the correlative implication of our past and present and our future implementation and execution of goals considering all the three timelines taken into prospective.  This isn’t a book to read in a single sitting and grasp everything out of it. It’s meted out of sincere efforts put up to bring out the real scenario of the country with summoned realistic counsels to overcome from rather deplorable condition the country is facing today. This book is laid on connoting the thoughts and preachings of one of the greatest scholar world has ever known Chanakya along with the beliefs and teachings of our father of the nation Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, encompassing the present scenario.  Author's vitalizing feat can also be sensed from the 65 references which he made to make a stronghold case of his treatise.

         An eye opener for all the Indians who aren’t awake yet

Cover Page:

Black hole is of prime importance as it devours everything else. How would you represent a black hole in terms of color? Black isn’t it? Yes this color has significance in the cover page of this book as it encompasses everything India needs to do to envision itself as “Sarvagun Sampoorna” (To bring out the best in terms of completeness).  If an adequate action isn’t taken now we would drown our self to a pitiful grave which is looking more promising similar to engulfing in a black hole.

About the Author:

Pavan K. Varma,studied history at St. Stephen College, New delhi and took a degree in law from Delhi  University.He has been press secretary to the president of India, official spokesman of the Foreign Office, director general of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations, and India's ambassador to Bhutan. Having taken premature retirement from the Indian Foreign Service, he now seeks to be actively involved in public life.

Pavan K. Varma has authored several acclaimed and bestselling books, among them, Ghalib: The Man, The Times; Krishna: The Playful Divine; The Great Indian Middle Class; Being Indian: The truth about why the 21st century will be India's; Becoming Indian: The Unfinished Revolution of Culture and Identity and When Loss is Gain. He has also translated into English the poetry of Gulzar, Kaifi Azmi and Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

Compostional Report:

Prologue of this book covers the bases or the roots from which a theme is derived and later matured into a fully fledged blueprint for a change.  Starting with Chanakya's preachings from Arthashastra , an ancient Indian treatise on statecraft, economic policy and military strategy  written by the great scholar dating back 2300 years BC Era, captivating  to our present day scenario which needs an immediate alteration.

Author of this book Pavan K. Varma has succinctly exploited the prowess of demarcation to mark 5 significant areas which requires a prominent stance in terms of actual implementations. This book covers an equitably devised areas of concern viz. Governance, Democracy, Corruption, Security and the creation of an Inclusive society with a prior liaison with our immediate Past, since our Independence in 1947 highlighting all the pros and the cons linked with each and every decision taken by our fore founders of the country.

This book covers all the 5 eminent lurking dangers with detailed analysis of each with the basic knowledge of what is the current situation, why are we in such a state and what is the probable outcome if we continue to progress or rather regress with such a rate and the most importantly what needs to be done to overcome our stricken state and be amongst the fortified nations. This book has sought 354 lines of immediate action points covering all the cornerstones along with the detailed reasoning of each and every point stated (57-Democracy, 87-governance, 111-corruption, 58-security and 41-creation of inclusive society)

The best part according to me was the presentation of the real India to its mass and detailed action plan mention to root out the all the evils from our country. This is not a novel for a literate person but a bible to an educated citizen, perhaps this is the best and the worst thing which it contains.

Worst- let us take an example mentioned in this book
5 years ago shortage of coal was 43 million tones and now it is 140 million tones. India being a 4th largest in cola reserve this is something unbelievable.”
 What will a common person understand with 43 million tones and 140 million tones except that it has further decreased?

Best- As I said this has nothing to do with a literate mind but means a lot to an educated citizen. The reason being the exponential decrease of coal reserves in spite of all the planned (unplanned) strategies that let to shrinkage of reserves, policies of the government (governance), Use of resources ( democracy),Coalgate scam(corruption), Proper utilization and growth of available resources along with its security (Security) and harnessing resources for a sustainable progress(creating an inclusive society). This book covers everything and that’s why I recommend it to all educated minds, a must read as I always believe a knowledgeable citizen is much better than an ignorant one when it comes to tackling a situation at hand.

I agree with the author “it’s time to change and if we fail, India may never succeed. Our future is at stake.
I would rate this book 4.5 out of 5.

This is a book to awake our sleeping brains and start acting towards our cumulative goal to progress

This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Pulling myself up

Rock climbing (B&W)
Rock climbing (B&W) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
During my hostel days, which ended not that long time ago, I did or rather was unable to do something that put me to shame. The nightmare lasted with me until yesterday where I finally, through my actions, put it to rest.

It was the dead of a summer night. Around 2 am I woke up with my stomach groaning like a hungry lion. I tried my best at forcing myself to sleep but since my stomach just wouldn’t listen I had no choice. Being the first year at college our block was locked up to avoid any seniors entering and ragging us. Who said ragging doesn’t exist? It just gets invisible when handled with an official notice. Since I had nothing to eat and no one around was awake I had to tread the untreaded path – jump off my 1st floor balcony and stealthily move to the night canteen; a small place that served basic stuff to eat till the wee hours of the morning.

Getting off the balcony was easy. I moved on to my first floor window sill and using the horizontal beams to hang on, which were there more for the design than the support; I jumped down landing perfectly on my two feet. “That wasn’t hard I thought to myself.” After devouring the food I ordered (even the basic things taste yummy when you’re hungry) I made the way back. 

No how would I climb back up? I thought to myself. The same way I came down? Is there any other way? No. Fine. Here we go. I got on to the ground floor window sill. That gave me the needed height to make the jump for the beams present. Once I got a hold on them I had to pull myself up and get on to my window sill. It was nothing from there. Pulling myself up was the only challenge. 

Using all the energy in me, which was high compared to when I jumped down, I jumped and lurched onto one of the beam. I had to quickly pull myself up or the force of gravity would make sure I had no energy left. I pulled myself, gave it all I had. My head which was nowhere to the level of the beam suddenly began to make its presence felt. My eyes were now over the beam and all I could see was hope. I needed a push, somehow. My hands were giving way and I couldn’t feel the ground beneath my feet. Having lost hope I let go and came down with a thud. The thud was not loud enough to make the entire hostel take notice, but was loud enough to awaken some of my mates. 

Since giving up is not something I know, I tried again, but failed everytime. In this whole process, I gained an audience – all my mates had now occupied front row seats to my ongoing dismal performance. “Josh mein aake kud gaya”. “Kya Nelton, tu apne aap ko hi nahi utha sakta? You can’t even pull yourself up?” were the few comments I could catch. Needless to say, they stung like darts. One of my friends was kind enough and jumped down to help me. He let me stand on his shoulders and try to get over the beam. I tried that too and it was of no use. I didn’t have an iota of strength to give it another shot. Finally, after trying for an hour, having no other way I woke the watchman who was guarding my block. Jumping out of your block was an offence. Getting caught was a bigger one. The watchman opened his eyes and having realized what had transcended started with his rant. Luckily for me, he didn’t go to the complaining part and quietly let me in. I went straight to my bed and bid the night farewell. The days that followed were marked with constant jibes at me. All I did was keep quiet. Days turned to months and months to years, people forgot that incident but me. 

Yesterday, on an adventure at the Sanjay Gandhi National Park at Borivali, Bombay, history had repeated itself. I had a 20 feet feature that stood as a test of whether I was still the same as in hostel or not. I set my shoe-clad foot on a small edge and raised myself. But before I could get on to another point I slipped and slid down. I kept trying but somehow I just couldn’t get a grip. A little bit up but a lot more down. Sensing the impatience, I requested the next participant for a final try. I took off my shoes and took the first step, then the next. Before I knew it I was a decent 3 feet above the ground. I was off but the end wasn’t anywhere near. My body was starting to give way and my mind all clogged up. I remembered my hostel incident and that did it all. This was one way of burying a memory and I was going to let the chance go. 

Clearing my mind I said to myself, “Come on, you can do it. One step at a time, take your own time. There are no Oscars to win here.” The crowd below got behind me.  Cheers of “Nelton, Nelton” filled the air. Slowly, little by little, I went from one point to another, rising higher and reaching closer. I now only had the final few steps before me and victory would be mine. But what I didn’t have was the energy. My stamina quota was exhausted and all I wanted was to rest. “Could I just be pulled up by someone” I thought. But that would mean giving up right? A perfect case of ‘So close, yet so far’. Giving up is something I didn’t know and I wanted to keep it that way. “Come on Nelton, you can do it”. I looked up and searched for another hold. I raised my aching hand and reached for it. Moving my weight I got onto a better hold. I could see the person at the top smiling at me. Come on he said. I held on to the final hold and pulled myself up. Pulling 80kgs is tough but there was a lot more weight in the mind which I was pulling. One, two and three and there I was. With my face covered in sweat, a stained tee, a body aching at every point and no energy left I stood victorious at the top with a cheering crowd below. I had finally pulled myself up.  

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Thursday, February 21, 2013

Love is all,you ever need...!!!

There’s nothing wrong in having a coldhearted feeling for someone. You won’t be called fraudulent for rejecting someone, who loves you whole heartedly. But have you ever thought why, We the human beings who crave for a little love and a glimpse of affection from everybody around at times run away from people who genuinely care?
We tend to regard them as smitten and ignore them. We strain to endure with someone whom we think is suitable for us or those we feel we are compatible with. But my question is what’s wrong with the person whom you rejected?  Can Love be the reason of being neglected?

There may be various reasons for you to reject someone. I would request the readers to be ready with their analytical glasses by the time I end up with this story.

Anisha was talking to her best friend Sobha about her indifferent past.
Sobha: Gosh! He loved you…didn’t you feel for him anytime?
Anisha: You know he was a good guy…but far too much sentimental to my liking…I feared he might do something…you never know anything about these emotional guys.
Sobha: Why what happened?
Anisha: You know I liked him but I felt he was too much possessive, would often say I would do anything for you and would die for you if need arises and such craps like that.
Sobha:  That’s a speech every Romeo in town has, on their lips…but you were in contact with him for more than 2 years. Did you feel about his possessiveness during that period?

No! He was actually a nice guy; helpful and friendly nothing of that sort…didn’t even look or stare at girls.

Sobha: Then why do you think he was possessive?
I think long distance was hurting him and he would often say…if I won’t marry you I will die…he would often speak about death…I felt it won’t be good to stick with someone who is so rueful about life…sometimes I felt he’s gone crazy and would do anything.

Sobha: Any such instance?
You know out of a bloom he came up to my city once and called me to meet…I denied, thinking he might throw acid on me as I had told him I have a boy friend and I don’t love him anymore.

Sobha: Ok… what did he do then?
Anisha: He said he would come up to my house and speak up to my parents.
Sobha: What did you do then?
Anisha: I was afraid as I didn’t want him to meet my parents and I had my medical exams on board… I told if he really loves me and wants me to be happy…he should go away.
Sobha: What did he do then?
 He went away…without disturbing me any further.

Sobha: So he didn’t try to contact again?
Anisha: Yes he did.
Sobha: What did you speak to him?
I told him to forget me as I was happy without having any contact with him. I told him I have an important person in my life and I don’t want him to disturb my happy life.

Sobha:  What did he do then?
  You won’t believe what he actually did…he contacted the person I liked and asked him to keep good care of me and then he never came between us.

Sobha: So he never tried to contact you?
You know, I knew him since school and therefore there were many common friends whom he would ask about me.

Sobha: So what did you do?
In my last conversation with him I told him frankly I don’t like him contacting my friends regarding me and because of him I couldn’t keep in touch with my friends.

So what did he do?

He stopped contacting my friends.

Sobha: That’s the end right?

Do you think he might still have the same feelings for you?

I don’t know.

Do you really believe that there’s a person in this world whom god has sent for you and he would do everything just to be with you?

Might be…but I haven’t met any such person till date.

How do you know?

I never felt like spending my life with any person.

Ok…I understood everything…who is the most important person in your life?

How is it related to the topic? Anyways the answer is my Parents.

Sobha: Suppose for some reason…i hope it never occurs in your life….your parents want to break all their contacts with you…say for your decision for marrying someone whom they don’t like…what will you do?  
Anisha: First of all I will never go against my parents decision…so no question of getting into such a phase. Sobha: I am only talking of an incidence just for an imagination what would you do…to have you parents in your life?
Ok….i would talk to them…would discuss about in details and would make them realize the importance that’s it’s my life and I should be happy with the person whom I choose to marry.

Sobha: Suppose your parents don’t agree…and you have failed in each and every attempt to convince them…what will be your final talk? You cannot leave either the person you love or your parents.
  I will ask my parents to divide me into two halves one to keep with themselves and the other with the person I love.

Sobha: Did you realize what you spoke just now? Not only you…it is applicable to each and every person in this world…when you want someone in your life desperately you try your best to be with that person…you try to convince them as much as you can…if you couldn’t, you try to take advantage by being emotional…if it also fails …the last thing available for you is to speak about your life/death. And by far what I heard he did the same thing.
Anisha: Whatever you are saying may be true he may have genuine feelings for me but you know I don’t feel anything for him. I told him about it and if he couldn’t take it as I intended what can I do for it?
It’s not that you told him this in the first instance…you have even accepted his proposal…if I am not mistaken.

I was just checking him out…I had no feelings…I thought if I speak those 3 words to him I may feel the love for him…but I didn’t.

If you don’t have any feelings for him…you did the right thing…but what about him…I don’t know whether you believe or not but Love happens only once and there are few people who give their heart and soul to it. He kept on your vows and gladly accepted each and every term you kept against him without a question. He went away from you, your life and your friends because you wanted him to be out of your life.


Anisha: But where is my fault?
It’s not about finding faults…it’s about a person’s life. You did whatever you wanted you wanted from your life. You were not ready for a relationship and frankly speaking the way I feel you felt yourself burdened or chained to go into a relation…you wanted to enjoy life, be free like a bird as you didn’t want to get serious about love.

Yes…that’s what I believed all my life.

But did you realize what imprints you left on his heart? Do you think he would lead a normal life?

Anisha:  What can I do about it?
I am not asking you to do anything, just for a moment think… if you were in his place what will you do? How would you feel…how would you react? What if, he still loves you? You never know he might still be waiting for you.

I don’t want to get into this awkward situation…please.

I know it’s better to keep oneself at a safe distance from any undue troubles but did he actually harm you in anyway?

Anisha: Why are you asking this?
Sobha: The way I see it…earlier you ignored him because he was sentimental about you, after a while you kept him away from your life feeling he might harm you for rejecting him and now I believe you are not ready to even find out whether he still loves you or not because you are egoistic. You don’t want to fall before your ego.
Anisha: No…it’s nothing like that.
Then what stops you from trying to contact him and see if he actually has the same feeling for you.

Anisha: Why would I do that?
Sobha:  Don’t you think there was something incomplete about your story? Don’t you think there’s something missing? Don’t you think your inner soul have a grudge upon you? Don’t you think you were too stubborn? Do you really feel a person who loved you so much deserves this negligence? Don’t you feel a love story can never end like this?
Why are you speaking all these things?

You are a very good friend of mine and therefore I believe…you should try to contact him once. You are pretty and am sure many people might have proposed you but have you ever seen or even heard any person reacting the way he did?

I told you he doesn’t seem to be normal.

Sobha: When you love someone whole heartedly…you can never be like a normal person.
Anisha: what do you mean?
loving someone doesn’t mean you are bowing to someone. You never fall for letting go your gut feeling and accepting the one who loves you. Love is not bounded by anybody’s ego.  Love is serene like the wind which likes to flow uninterrupted and the way you disrupted its flow I am sure you will feel suffocated if not now than certainly in the very near future.  

Anisha: you and your love philosophies…are impeccable.
Sobha: Anisha think about the entire discussion I had with you today and am telling for your sake only…at least once think from your heart and decide what you have to do with your life. You know love is all you need to live and be happy for your entire life and there are very few lucky people for whom their love waits for them till eternity…!!!

When I was writing about this article I had youth in my mind and India’s 35-40 % population lies in the age group of 18-35. Do you know, what’s the biggest worry for these age group people?  No, career or jobs aren’t their primary stress. They are tensed about their relations. The process of being a couple is the foremost threat to their personal life. When I was thinking about Personal life most of them suffer from the heart ache of a broken relationship or they try to find ways to lament their relations. There are many such examples where a person is at loss just because of their views towards a relationship. I always believe after a person gains a bit maturity he/she does realizes Love is all that they need. And therefore this story is on a person who couldn’t decide upon her life and messed up with the question –“what she really needs.”

Enjoy the poem I wrote specially for this article…Love is all, you ever need

Love isn’t a frail to come by,
it’s not a rigid tail to hang by,
it’s like a holy grail to standby,
love Never fails to hail nearby.

Love’s like a dreamy tale to hearsay,
It’s like a rainfall in withered may,
it’s not basking blindfold all the way,
it’s like a Braille as observant say,

Love’s all about hope in dismay,
It’s full of fragrance bestowed in zesty,
It doesn’t believe in hatred or betray,
Love’s eternal and endures all the way.

Love’s an entire soul growing in a seed,
Don’t dethrone it like a petty weed,
Don’t haste love in forbearance greed,
As love is all, you ever need…!!!

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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

IndiBlogger HP meet: Connecting People through Connected Music

I was staring at my screen making sense of the production issue that had cropped up when my phone buzzed. Ignoring the distraction to recover an application that had suffered a major heart attack I proceeded to playing detective in search for the culprit. Yes, my day couldn’t have started off well.

After slogging endlessly I finally rested in my chair in peace bringing reprieve not only to myself, my team but also to some thousands of users affected by the outage.  Feeling a pinch in my tummy I picked up my phone to check the time. I then realized that other than other tasks to attend to a text message from an unknown number awaited me that read “IndiBlogger meet this Saturday. Register fast, just 35 seats remaining”. Without bothering to identity whose number it was I opened up the browser on my PC and punched in www.Indiblogger.in on my keyboard. After a few rotations of the loading circle the browser returned a not so courteous message “Denied Access Policy”.

Not knowing how to get through (there are proxies but the chance of them working are one in a million) I picked up my phone and opened Safari. But since Airtel doesn’t seem to allow anyone to express him/herself when you want to the most, nothing opened up. It doesn’t even matter if it’s the million dollar Apple that you’re own. Life is fair when you need it the least.

Leaving chance to destiny I waited to get home. To my good luck, there were some seats still remaining. Thanking my lucky stars I registered.

You know, this is how destiny plays a part. A few fellow blogger friends of mine after having met each other at the Vodafone SpeedFest IndiBlogger meet got together and formed a group on FacebookBlogger 007” (Talk about creativity on the part of the creator). Since the last time we met at the meet in September we have been trying endlessly to catch up. But thanks to work, personal commitments and the disparities in the lives of the working and the college going things never worked out. Finally, all thanks to IndiBlogger, the reason we met in the first place we were destined to meet again. 

For the day of the meet and a fellow blogger group mate decided to travel together. In that way the catching up would begin. You may think we stay miles apart but not so. We just stay 10 minutes away and yet haven’t met in all this time. Countless searches on Google and M-Indicator indicated just one thing – the journey ain't going to be simple. Trains would still drop you off far away while the bus, don’t talk about it. We just had 1 that made it all the way to BKC and we would have to be in serious luck to catch hold of it. After doing our math, permutations and combinations included and evaluating any calculated risks we were taking we decided to go for the bus. We met at the stop and hoped for the best. Thankfully luck was on our side.

Through the nearly 2 hour journey we managed to catch up on many things, interests and other mundane stuff. We got off at our stop and thought it wasn’t bad at all. We reached the event and were all set. Let the evening roll. We made an entry and were welcomed with smiles; Hey-Hi’s and raised eyebrows. I and my female friend, always the main topic of discussion for our group for leg pulling didn’t let this one go. “Tum dono saath mein aaye na?” “Aaj kal Nelton ne pick up and drop service bhi chalu kiya hai…hume kab pick up karega?” What not can people come up with…I couldn’t stop blushing.

The event started off with an apology for beginning late. I didn’t know of the rest but for me it had already started on time. If you have to be connected to music then its paramount you get your vocals right, right? From hitting the highs to touching the lows (so low that I could feel my voice box) we did it all. If that wasn’t enough we even went crazy with various noises...all part of the game. 

After that doze of freshness and rushing blood to voice glands, we moved to continue tradition with the 30 seconds of fame ‘but’ with a difference. Instead of the introducing yourself on stage when you’re called to, we had to run around the place to the beat of “I like to move it” and get to know as many people as possible and write their names on the charts provided. Since I have been to many meets before I knew the catch. As no one said you couldn’t cheat I conveniently wrote down the names of all the people I already knew. The regulars were as usual were there - Blogwati G, Corinne, Ameena, Magic Eye, Aditya Iyer, Suomoni, etc After doing the smart work I proceeded to the hard work. Amongst my interactions I came across Ashwin Pathak, a shy 9th standard boy, brother of the cute Aditi Pathak. Ashwin comes across as a simple fellow but that’s only till he starts talking about his blog or better say Technical blog. This fellow makes sense of web development languages which are more like Greek and Latin for me.

Neha 1 and Neha 2 were the other 2 people I met. The 1 & 2 is because I can’t remember their surnames. Rafa, a blogger who has met Chetan Bhagat; Soutik, the avid guitarist; Prutha, the quiet girl next door, Jenil, Moulik and Stephen were the ones I also had the fortune of meeting.

Viswanathan Anand says it’s easy to miss the obvious. Indeed it is. For the first time I met Vaishakhi Mishra and Amreen Bhujwala. Though we have always investigated crime scenes together in Criminal Case we have never met and this was a pleasant encounter.

The interaction section ended with our not so 30 seconds to fame ending. Prizes, as in Rs.700/- worth headphones being given away to those who met 40 or more bloggers. Thanks to my smartness I won one. That made it one for the day. 

Ranjivjit Singh, CMO at Hewlett-Packard India, then took center stage to explain to us the coolest new development at the HP stable – Connected Music. Powered by the big daddy of the music world - Universal Music group, this service sets HP Windows 8 based consumer PC’s, laptops, tablets and ultrabooks a class apart by offering  free streaming access to Universal's full catalogue for 90 days. If you've invested in a Windows 8 HP Spectre or HP Envy PC, you'll also get 10 free MP3 downloads per month for three months.

Ranjivjit Singh, CMO at Hewlett-Packard India
 As well as streaming the shows live, HP and Universal will be giving users the opportunity to win trips to the private gigs as well as other exclusive music content from artists on Universal's roster, which includes Robbie Williams, Pixie Lott, Maroon 5, Drake and Frank Ocean.

To add to the experience HP has teamed up with Dr Dre's Beats brand to improve audio playback on its devices, and has also sealed deals with music streaming services.

While Ranjivjit was giving his presentation, some mouthwatering dishes were being served. The sad part was since it is Lent the non-veg dishes on my table were only a feast to my eyes. Unable to control the rumblings in my stomach I called for the waiter and told him to get some veg dishes ASAP. Thankfully my prayers were answered in a short time. I savored the pizza crust and quelled the uprising in my stomach. To top it up I had some lovely mocktails on offer. Please don’t ask me which ones and how many glasses I had. That’s top secret. I can only divulge that the mint flavor was my favourite.

IndiBlogger meets have always been known for the prizes on offer. This time round there were Touch enabled HP laptops. Putting all my might I tried to come up with the artist whose name was in a secret envelope. From Elvis Presley to Engelbert Humperdinck to Rahat Fateh Ali Khan tp Remo Fernandes, I tried it all. Unfortunately I only thought of the Kings of Music. I wish I had thought of the Queen. The laptop I’m writing this post on would have been a HP and not a DELL. The other contest was about tweeting something nice about a fellow blogger. Forget about what I tweeted, Siddharth Gupta tweeted that I stole his chair. Obviously he didn’t win. You were supposed to write nice things about people.

A small break gave us time to catch up once again and click some pics. It was during this time I realized that my always quiet, tight lipped ever smiling friend had teeth. Eureka. This discovery would even put Columbus to shame. Siddharth on the other hand surprised me by saying he too stays 10 minutes away from my place. If you needed evidence regarding the world being small here it was.

Blogger 007

Before the evening ended there was one thing in store. Connecting the people through connected music. All present had to decide which music they relate to – Smack Thy Booty (Hip Hop), 133 (Bollywood), Dish Chum (Beats), Heavy Metal or Rap. Since we Indians love our Maa and Cinema the Bollywood Brigade formed the biggest group. From singing hit item songs like Fevicol se to Sheila to Munni we did it all, that too with music in perfect choir posture. What’s more I played conductor to keep everyone in sync.  The superb singer Priya Adivarekar took the lead and made sure we sounded tolerable. Without a doubt we were crowned the champions after not only eliminating the competition but annihilating it.

13 13 13 Group

All this brought us to the end with some group pics clicked and smiles and pleasantries exchanged. Our group too set in different directions with the hope that we would meet again soon.

The Bloggers 

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Monday, February 11, 2013

Book Review: Spicy Bites of Biryani

Book : Spicy Bites of Biryani

Author : Ashwina Garg

ISBN : 978-93-80349-84-8

Genre : Fiction/Romantic

Price : 150 (I got it from Author herself)

Pages : 225

Publisher : Srishti Publishers & Distribution


Sometimes in life when everything is set up, everything seems full and serene suddenly a whip sound crackles through your ear which forces you to step back and face the rather somber realistic music which is far from the dreamy world you were dreaming…realists would say, welcome to the factious reality. There are two moments in a person’s life when one feels he/she has everything in life but yet something is missing, it’s the time when one wakes up from a beautiful dream and the other when one tries to cover the lacunas of love life crossing vehemently a blistering career, suddenly finds oneself at the wrong foot as far as age and youth is concerned. This story is about the second phase

And this light hearted romantic fiction will let you know about everything which a rich, single and prior senescence youth can bring forth and yes it goes with the quote-“The hardest thing about having the perfect life is keeping it that way”

Cover Page:
The nonchalant and blithesome story is very well depicted from the carefree outlook of the cover page. A car parked near a beach and a couple having a casual talk. By the looks you can call it a stress buster while you go through the book clich├ęs may take up the toll and you may be subdued by the plain mockery of things .you may recall the taste buds partly tangy partly spicy while devouring a Biryani.

About the Author:
Ashwina Garg lives in Hyderabad with her husband and two kids. She studied accountancy and has worked as an entrepreneur, a German translator and a technical writer. Spicy bites of Biryani is her Debut Novel.

Compositional Report:
Spicy Bites of Biryani is all about the hiccups of life and the main two characters of the story Aditi Patil and Sanjay Bolisetti are certainly not any exception.
Aditi Patil, Writer by profession has written 2 best sellers but is struggling to find words for her 3rd book for more than a year. She is facing a writer’s block as people may say but there are no blockages of moving over to one boyfriend after the other. She lives life on her own terms, doesn’t want to give any heed to what others think or feel about her. An obedient student of Anti marriage syndrome and her blogs are the sole realistic link to her rather oblivious lifestyle.  It’s only after she meets Sanjay Bolisetti that she felt of changing up with her modus Vivendi.

Sanjay Bolisetti, An US returned Telugu speaking tall, nerdy, rich guy with middle class roots in his mid 30’s came up to India after getting betrayed, selling off his company in a view to get settled in India after marrying a suitable alliance. Aditi made her views crystal clear from the first day itself that she is no mood to get married but Sanjay like a tyrant lost in a battle came back to her after all his relatives and friends failed in their attempt of match making. This story is a journey Sanjay forged to tame the wild tigress which will remind you of rather entertaining and tiresome journey.

Mayank Arora and Jayashree Arora are two important characters of the story.
Mayank belonged from a typical Punjabi family who married Jayashree Sastri from a conservative Tamilian culture while they were both working in US along with Sanjay. Back in India Mayank and Jayashree was compliance of Aditi. Though their roles were of minuscule importance as far as the main theme is concerned and were only efficacious when Sanjay and Aditi needed a social grouping as both Mayank and Jayashree were too occupied with their office deadlines, conservative families and their own problem of having a child.

As far as the shortcomings is concerned which I felt is very ominous is abbreviating the roles of Mayank and Jayashree while it concentrated mainly on Sanjay and Aditi leaving the other two characters almost aloof. Though the tone was set on Aditi and Sanjay…yet at times it seemed as they ceased to flow and the final climax seemed incomplete as it wasn’t shown what was inevitable and the attempt of unnecessary twist of kidnapping Aditi flunked somewhat as it proved to be rather numb and vague ending. A bit more humor would have given an ideal touch.  

The main throbbing points would be the justification done with the role of Aditi and her unwillingness to marry and Sanjay’s overwhelming response of mingling his high class status with that of his middle class roots.  The minor subplots were held firm and it added wings to main storyline. Author though a first timer held a grip on the storyline through a typical chick lit sensation throughout. Over all, an eminent
story, gracious characters and felicitous theme, this is a typical stress buster and 3.5 star rating makes it meriting read.


Life Adjudication of thestory:

A book to read at time of bed before going off to buzz. This story has enough to relax your mind at the same time stimulate your energies back after a stressful day.

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Thursday, February 07, 2013

Book Review: RIP

Book:- RIP

Author:- Mukul Deva

ISBN:- 978-93-82618-19-5

Genre:- Fiction/Thriller

Price:- 200 (I got this book from Blogadda in a  book review program)

Pages:- 286

Publisher:- Westland ltd

Have you ever given a thought on this statement-“Whoever we are at present be it our mentality, our thinking or what we do has a reflection of our past and a slimmer of ray what we ought to be in the future.” Thou art of fiction this book endeavors the present state of our country and an individual if glanced at large and would easily be conceived as one of those resurgent response of a group of suffering Indians in a hope of a better tomorrow. Had it not been the disclaimer it would have been difficult to trace the fictional part; as the plot, the storyline even the characters resemble with the natives of real India. That’s the charisma of the writer, fiction looks real. I bet you can’t get off with this thriller until you have gone through to the final climax of the story. 

Cover Page:
 Those who have read novels of Mukul Deva, can actually make a smart guess of the backdrop by looking at the Cover page itself. A commando standing facing the bright sunlight as if rearing to face each and everything, an Injection injecting the venom into the Author (Author’s name), the title RIP with a bullet symbol and the image of 10 Janpath with Indian national Flag at the rear tells a lot for the story itself.

About the Author:
An alumnus of La Martiniere College, Lucknow, the National Defence Academy, Pune and the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun, Mukul Deva was commissioned in December 1981 into the Sikh Light Infantry of the Indian Army. He took early retirement from the army after fifteen years of service, including a decade of combat operations in India and overseas. Now settled in Singapore, he is an entrepreneur, motivational speaker and an executive, business and creativity coach. He is also a Mentor on the United Nations Institute of Training and Research Afghanistan Fellowship. He is known as one of the finest fiction writer for military thriller, with “Lashkar” one of the bestsellers following the suite.

Compositional Report:
This Story revolves around a Para Military Retired Colonel. Krishna Athawale and his group of 5 other apt members (Karan Singh, Kevin David, Kashif Nadeem, Kamlesh Saikia & Kulwant Singh) forming a K-Team. In a view to upsurge the shape of Indian Political system at large and a hope of envisioning corruption free India, K-Team followed the route of bloodshed assassinating the culprits revealing their fortifying agony against the corrupt Politicians and Bureaucrats. 

A score mystifying story with a blend of professional and personal life of Col.K Athawale which is pertinent to the reason why he quit Para Commando in spite of being a super hero, risking his life every moment after his brother in law’s demise in an Air-plane crash, a result of spurious parts supplied to the Air force by arms dealer (Afzal Hasan) in collusion with a politician (Anduvetti Rajappan) who walked away scot-free. The rage was piling upon as numerous others perpetrators of scams and scandals such as Bofors, 2G, Commonwealth games were set free. 

Another Important Chunk of this intimidating story lies in its inclination towards the private life of Col.K Athawale which deals with his son (Sachin), Sister (Payal) and Payal’s Co-worker at NDTV news channel (Reena Bhagat) . Though being a sub plot within the main theme, it’s the outcome of the Love triangle between Col.K Athawale, Reena and Reena’s Separated Husband cashiered Captain Raghav Bhagat which ended the story on Col.K Athawale’s favour. More so because of Raghav’s wrong doings against her wife, the society and the country each taken into its rightful prospective.

The role of  Raghav Bhagat in conjuncture to the story’s end was more prominent as he was hired by Home minister (DM Karunakaran) to destabilize the K-Team from its roots and finish them unofficially before Karunakaran’s appointed member headed by director Vinod bedi of CBI could lay their hands on K-Team catching them alive. Since the K-Team was targeting the corrupt, Karunakaran tried to double cross them by hiring Raghav as K-Team’s arrest would throw tantrums on his own wrong doings. Home Minister’s throw of two dice backfired on his own back at the end.
Featured details would be encompassing blackwash of those high class criminals one after the other, after intimidating it to the public much before and aftereffects that lay ahead. The penchant use of technology both in writing and description, the detailing of the incidences one after the other with special reference of an Aura of Army backdrop and a crackerjack end gave the story a thrilling finish. Only thing which kept me bugging was its semblance with coincidences like how come Reena, Raghav, Col.K Athawale and Vinod travel at the same time in the same plane without knowing the other’s routine furthermore none from K-Team or Raghav’s or Vinod’s squad were present? How come Both Raghav and Vinod forgot to inform even a soul while tempting to cover up the monumental assassin attempt alone in addition to Kulwant not informing Col.K Athawale that he was struck at the basement? Over looking these Coincidences this is a phenomenal story almost a glitch free. A must read for all those people who love to read thrillers and a thriller relating to Military and resemblance to one’s own country’s problem and supplementary Romance is indeed rare. The entire story will make you feel like that of the movie ‘Rang de Basanti’ with an exception an exemplary happy ending.
Over all it’s a master piece of a military thriller. I would give it a score of 4.5 out of 5

An Eye opener best read at this very time when our country is falling to cope up with similar termites who are eating our country from within. It’s a story for the national upbringing.


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