Thursday, December 22, 2011

Hindi Raj Comics and Great Novels Collection: Best Selling Books in India 2011

Hindi Raj Comics and Great Novels Collection: Best Selling Books in India 2011: Here is the collection of  best selling books in india. List is as follows Revolution 2020 The Immortals of Meluha The Secret of N...

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Journey across Universe

Friday, December 2, 2011

लहरें: नैना लग्यां बारिशाँ

लहरें: नैना लग्यां बारिशाँ: वो आती तो हवाओं को हलके से छू कर खिलखिला देती, पलकें झपकतीं और हवा मुस्कुराती उसकी मासूमियत पर और अपनी मुट्ठी में उसकी उँगलियों की थिरकन को ...

Monday, October 17, 2011

Shooting practice

10m target shooting practice today.... amazing experience.. 50 rounds of firing wid air gun in intervals... at a premier shooting academy in Bangalore!

last round mein.. perfect 10 on 10 twice.. wow! :) :)

each round of 10 fires (max.).... => scores out of 100 (max.)

1st round: 31/100... below par.. but shooting for d first time.. so chalega!
2nd round: 61/100... max score for one full round
3rd round: 55/100
4th round: 53/100
5th round: 59/100
final (bonus) round: 58/70... *wid two perfect 10 on 10 scores*... my highest avg. score for today's shooting!!

total score: 317 out of 570... not bad.. an avg. score of 55.614 out of 100

Friday, October 14, 2011

Revolution 2020Revolution 2020 by Chetan Bhagat

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

in short.. one phrase for this new CB novel... love ka mayajaal.. sry.. maha-janjaal in life.. !!!! ;)

d love (triangle) story here.. more or less resembles that of d movie Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa..

its a good novel... Gopal.. well.. I don't know wht he did at d end was right or not.. just that.. u will feel sorry for him for initial part of d novel and at d ending part of d story... :/

View all my reviews

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

an interview wid.. d ultimate technology-driven-culture-preserving-&-Hindi-serving.. KavitaKosh founder.. Lalit Kumar

On face of it, he does not look anywhere near to Hindi. He comes across a normal geek, into computers, web development and a lot of other things. But what makes this 34-plus Delhi guy, miles apart or rather ahead from his peers is his unique integration of technology with language.

Founder of a hugely popular Hindi Poetry site -, Lalit Kumar is a simple joy to catch up with. In between gentle reminders from me to get married soon, which he says is something on his mind, he walks down the memory lane of how a small idea in his abundant grey cells has turned into a worldwide phenomenon of sorts, readily making available to Hindi lovers, well indexed compendium of poetry, lyrics, ghazals and nazms etc.

Editor-in-Chief MOHIT DUBEY caught up with LALIT KUMAR on a rainy afternoon, here are some Excerpts:

Q: So, for the benefit of readers, let’s explore the personality of Lalit Kumar. Go on?

A: Well, I am a Delhi guy, born and brought up here. People find it not in sync with me and my philosophy but I 'belong' to Delhi. Am a web developer and a software engineer. On the other side I love languages and is a product of my passion.

Q: How and why did the idea of a Hindi Poetry compendium on the internet come?

A: It was indeed out of the mainstream when I started it way back in 2006, July 5, 2006 to be precise. The idea of having a single window space wherein people could get well indexed Hindi poems etc had been lingering in my mind for long but I was unable to shape it.

It hurt me that despite such a rich collection, Hindi in different forms was available on the net only in very scattered form. It was here that I decided to provide to the lovers of the language and culture, a single window platform wherein everything would be available under one roof. That is how the concept of kavitakosh was born.

Q: But why Internet. Am sure one reason would be you being into web development but was there more to it?

A: Of course my being into web development was a big incentive to do something like this on the internet. But then I also felt that with the galloping strides of the www, this would be a very big medium of connecting people with the language.
Moreover, at the scale I wanted to launch this, there could not have been anything better and bigger than the internet. And I am happy that I have been proved right.

Q: Am sure there must have been very many difficulties as you ventured ahead. How difficult was creating, compiling and managing the whole thing?

A: Oh, there were umpteen problems... threat of violating copyright, financial constraints and infrastructure non-availability were major ones.

Q: How did you handle them?

A: Well, first it was transition of Kavitakosh from a personal website to a community website. Then there was coming along of like minded and passion-sharing people. We now have two parts of the Kavitakosh management - the Kavitakosh team and the second; Executive, these two wings together run the whole affair.

Q: Any specific reason for choosing Hindi language as the medium?

A: Nothing as such. Though, Hindi is my mother language so there was natural affinity towards it.

Q: There must have been tough times, moments when you were down. How did you cope up with it?

A: Every journey has its own ups and downs and I was at the receiving end of both. There were frustrating moments but my love for the cause and passion for integration of web development into this language realm kept me going. Then there were people in the team who always lifted the sagging spirits.

Q: So, how satisfying has been the journey so far?

A: Very, very much. I am happy that despite the problems that we faced, we have been able to come up with a national resource on the language. It simply is a great feeling.

Q: For the hundreds of admirers that Kavitakosh has, what value additions can they look forward to in the coming days?

A: There are many new things that are on the anvil. very soon we will be introducing multi-media section which would have audio-video collection of poems and other literary events of the yore, like Mushaira, Kavi Sammelan etc. As of now we have some 45,000 indexed poems, we would like to make it 50,000 soon.

Q: To end it on a personal note, 34 is quite an age in India to remain a bachelor. Any specific reasons ?

A: Not really. It’s just that I have been busy with lot of other things. But yes, age is catching up fast (laughs) and I am looking for the Miss Right!

*** The End ***

The Lo-Cal Literati

(an awesome article for budding authors.. like me.. :))

These young professionals are giving vent to the book in them, sans any literary pretension

Unique Selling Propositions

New authors are shaking up the publishing industry by devising innovative ways to sell their books

Endorsement deals: When former Infosys manager, Ravinder Singh, wrote his first book, I Too Had a Love Story, he approached the popular matrimonial agency for a tie-up, which sent his sales soaring

Free Samples: Weeks before Amish Tripathi’s Immortals of Meluha hit the bookshops, he printed sample copies of the first chapter and persuaded bookshops and chains to give them away free to anyone who approached the cash counter, creating a buzz

YouTube: Several first-time authors engage ad professionals to make a trailer based on their book and load it on YouTube, resulting in hits and awareness by the thousands

Social media: Authors proudly flaunt websites, Facebook and Twitter accounts, encouraging readers to contact them directly. Not only readers’ queries, but even their complaints are dealt with directly by the authors on a daily basis

Display: Unlike in the West, bookshop display space is not yet sold, but a personal relationship with the man at the cash counter always helps. Amish persuaded some bookshops to display his poster over the cash counter.

New Outlets: Going to small towns, bus stops and railway stations and even newspaper vendors in remote corners of the country has helped sales of books enormously, especially when they are priced low

Online bookshops: Buying books online on sites like Flipkart and India Plaza have done away with old ways of distribution. Pre-orders of forthcoming books are large enough to decide size of print run.

They are the sort of writers who couldn’t get past the security guards outside plush publishing houses. Their books were thrown routinely into the slush pile. But now, as a new generation of readers, famished for books about themselves, buy them by the lakhs, smashing all bestselling
records, they are sending publishers into a tizzy. Never before perhaps in the publishing business have so many editors got it so wrong for so long.

Chetan Bhagat, of course, was the original blunder. In the late ’90s, when he began peddling his first book, Five Point Someone, he was shown the door by every Indian publisher worth his literary salt. “Arundhati Roy’s God of Small Things had just come out,” he says, “and everyone was looking for a book like hers. They just did not get my book.” But when his book inexplicably climbed up the bestseller list, and stayed there, the very publishers who’d looked down their noses at him, went chasing after his clones. They signed on any IIT or IIM graduate who thought he had a book in him.

Except Amish Tripathi. He was from IIM alright—and a banker to boot—but his novel was anything but campus romance. In fact, it was set in 1900 BC—a fantasised story of a real man, a Tibetan tribesman who migrates to ancient India and is recast as the god of gods, Shiva. Clueless about high literature, and a sports enthusiast in school and college, Amish threw in touches that nobody had tried before in mythological retellings: adventure, plot, romance and dialogues straight out of the campus novel everyone was publishing. The few publishers—out of the 20 he approached—who deigned to respond, told him to go back and write a campus novel, or one on office politics—anything but mythology.

“Indian readers don’t want to read Salman Rushdie or Vikram Seth. Who likes to read books with a dictionary by their side! Aravind Adiga’s books sold only because his language is normal.”Jayanta Bose, Srishti Publisher

Amish didn’t go to IIM for nothing: he pursued the project relentlessly. First, by getting it published by a small press, then taking over the marketing, and supervising the distribution. Clueless about how the books world operates, he decided to do it his way. “If the author doesn’t push his book, who will?” With 11 years’ experience as head of marketing in an insurance firm, Amish went at selling his book: he got a friend in the ad world to make a trailer of it—a film with a live model and sets with music—and loaded it on YouTube. He discovered that the cash counter was the heart of a bookshop, so he printed samples of the first chapter, bound them and persuaded the cashier to give it away free to customers. Sure enough, those who read the first chapter wanted to read more and placed pre-orders. Amish also spent hours on social media and in bookshops to ensure his book got noticed. It worked: within a week, The Immortals of Meluha hit the bestseller charts; within four months, it sold 45,000 copies; last month, it touched an astounding 1,25,000.
For Amish, the success of his book is a sign of a trend mainstream publishers have been slow to recognise. “I think India is changing, and people frankly don’t care for the kind of books big publishers were coming out with—stories of the British Raj or the struggles of NRIs. After a century, India is rich again, and people want to hear stories about themselves—about our call centre generation, or a Punjabi marrying a Tamilian or our myths told in a modern way. A few of us have just been lucky to be blessed with stories that connect with this mood.”

It also helps that this new breed of “authors by chance”, as one of them describes himself, are “not burdened by the purity of language” or the literary style mainstream publishers demand of their writers. In fact, nearly all of them dismiss literary writers as either too Western, too long-winded, too disconnected with Real India, writing books that nobody wants to read any more, in a style that “stresses you out”, requiring a dictionary by your side as you read. By contrast, theirs is an Indian version of an English everyone is comfortable with, a “dil ki bhasha” (language of the heart) in contrast to a “pet ki bhasha” (language of commerce).

By the time MNC publishers woke up to Meluha’s success, Amish had already been snapped up by former distributor and now Westland publisher CEO, Gautam Padmanabhan. For Amish, it was a dream deal: a publisher who didn’t insist on cleaning up his language, who was open to working with the author on marketing details, including addressing readers’ complaints of missing pages and lack of copies in bookshops anywhere in the country. And more important, he is willing to take risks no other publisher has dared so far. The second book of Amish’s trilogy, The Secret of the Nagas, due to hit bookstores in August, will start with a print run of 1,00,000 copies. Compare this with the first print run of Booker prize-winner and bestseller Aravind Adiga’s Last Man in the Tower: just 30,000.

Westland has also snapped up a few more authors who Padmanabhan believes have the potential of selling close to a million copies. One of them is weight-loss expert Rujuta Diwekar, whose first book, Don’t Lose Your Mind, Lose Your Weight, is close to the 1,00,000 sales mark. Her second book, Women and the Weight Loss Tamasha, began with a print run of 75,000 and has already sold 50,000 within six months of its release. In contrast, her first publisher, Random House, was more risk-averse, coming out with a first print run of a mere 5,000.

Rujuta, too, believes she has discovered how to connect with the aam reader. “Everyone is interested in losing weight—you can’t open a single newspaper without finding some ad on how to lose weight. But not one of them was talking about our homegrown wisdom on eating right.” Having read only three books in her entire life, Rujuta says she wrote her first book exactly like she speaks: a Mumbaiyya English with homegrown wisdom and asides. When her editors at Random House urged her to change the language, she insisted it wouldn’t work for her. “There are so many diet books I come across which you have to read with a dictionary by your side. Food is so intimate to our lives that when we talk of it, it has to have an instant connect.”

There’s another reason why Rujuta preferred to switch to Westland from her more prestigious first publisher. As a publisher who has a healthy respect for books that sell, Padmanabhan knows how to keep his bestselling authors happy. The arrogance of the more reputed publishers is off-putting, says Rujuta. Her editor at Westland, for instance, flew from Chennai to Mumbai to clear the final proofs of her book, and accompanied her on the multi-city book tour they organised for her. Westland, according to Rujuta, understands the value of relationships and that’s why she wants to stay with them no matter how hard the others try and tempt her away. Nearly every big author Westland has caught recently says the same thing. Clearly, Padmanabhan is hanging on to the old-fashioned attitude that most MNC publishers are forgetting in their race for the next big book—investing in a life-long relationship between the editor and the author that goes beyond mere books, and how to write and publish them.

However, for Rashmi Bansal, IIM alumnus and self-published author of two bestsellers that have each crossed the 1,00,000 mark within 10 months of their release, it’s not Westland’s gift for building relationships that tempted her to sign up with them as much as their impressive reach and stomach for massive print runs. Westland, for instance, started with a first print run of 75,000 for her third book of success stories of new entrepreneurs in June this year and has already crossed the 50,000 mark.

In 2008, when Rashmi published her first book of inspirational stories in the business world, she did the usual round of well-known publishers. But when she figured it would take over a year for her book to hit the bookstores, were it to be accepted, she decided to do it on her own. And along the way discovered what ails most publishing houses: editors feel they know better than authors about language and style, especially if they are first-timers; they don’t give a break to fresh and interesting voices that can really connect with mass markets; their pricing is too high; they’re unwilling to take big risks by going for large print runs; and they are making no attempt to reach out to the huge market outside the metros.

Recently, Rashmi says, tired of the endless entreaties by aspiring young writers who couldn’t find publishers to read their manuscripts, she invited them to submit their books to her. She expected 10 or 12 manuscripts at most, but an astonishing 60 turned up in her mailbox. Of course, most of them were hopeless—either weak imitations of what already exists, or just dull. But at least two were potential bestsellers. Someday, she says, when she runs out of books to write, she might open a publishing house to bring out fresh and interesting new voices. “This is a very confident generation, there are thousands of them out there writing books none of the publishing houses are willing to read.”

There is one publisher, though, who is doing just that—Jayanta Bose of Srishti, tucked away in a back lane of Delhi’s Shahpur Jat village, where cowsheds and stringcots coexist with boutiques. There’s nothing about this unassuming retired employee of Rupa to suggest it, but Bose has in less than four years of starting his hunt for commercial books unerringly spotted and published dozens of unlikely new authors who have become national bestsellers, four of them selling over 2,00,000 copies each and two crossing the 1,00,000 mark.

“Most publishers here are arrogant and talk down to you. I like to write exactly like I talk, but with most publishers, language becomes an issue. When they try to clean up my English, I had to say: it doesn’t work that way.”Rujuta Diwekar, Don’t Lose Your Mind, Lose Your Weight

One of them is American Express banker Durjoy Datta. Five years ago, as an engineering student, Durjoy decided to write a book—just for the fun of it. Already a blogger, he strung together various blogposts, loosely knit them together and did what all young English-speaking Indians seem to be doing these days: looked for a publisher. He submitted online to four or five of them, including Srishti. Srishti was the only one to get back to him—in three days. Despite its liberal use of campus slang, its liberties with grammar and generous use of the F-word, Bose spotted the genuine voice of a young man from the wrong side of Delhi trying to make out and move up. His book, Of Course I Love You...Till I Find Someone Better, was out in four months in 2008, and hit the bestseller charts instantly. An embarrassed Durjoy, who had kept the book a secret from his family, was forced to confess his guilt when his face appeared in a national magazine.
Since then, writing books has become something of an addiction for him. He’s written four already—Now That You’re Rich (2009), She Broke Up, I Didn’t (2010) and I am Single...! So Is My Girlfriend (2011)—their combined sale is an astounding 7.5 lakh copies. The royalty from his books is more than his salary, but Durjoy isn’t ready to quit his day job yet. “My books are entertainers, but it’s an unpredictable business. Who knows how long I can keep belting out bestsellers?”

So what’s the secret? Bose tries to unravel the mystery. Ever since he sensed a market in commercial fiction, he’s followed the same strategy. Love sells, according to him, especially in small towns. And when you combine love with the anxiety that goes with growing up in the New India—coping with board exams, parental aspirations, girlfriend troubles, job stress—it sells lakhs of copies. The first commercial book he published, Anything for You, Ma’am—An IITan’s Love Story by Tushar Raheja, began with a print run of 4,000 and ran out in 10 days. It has now crossed 2,00,000.

From the beginning, Srishti has a few rules: be open to fresh, new voices (among his finds is 17 year-old schoolboy Ritwik Mallik, who has already written two bestsellers and is ready with his third, even as his 12th class board exams approach); keep it simple (“our books are in Hinglish, not literary English); keep it short (manuscripts must not exceed 50,000 words so that books can be about 250 pages, with enough breathing space to make it easy reading); keep the overheads low (minimal staff, no fancy office, no book launch parties); price it at Rs 100, have stories set in India and about Indians, preferably from small towns. It is here and in villages that his readership is, says Bose, with a new generation of English-educated readers who are devouring his books. He is also not burdened with a brand name associated with unreadable literary novels.

So is the new writer ending the decades-long dominance of the literary novel on the publishing scene? Only time—and the bestseller figures—will tell.

Rashmi Bansal
Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish

“I’m on top of the bestseller list, same as Amitav Ghosh. But nobody is going to interview me as they do him. It doesn’t bother me as long as I’m reaching real people.”

Ashwin Sanghi
Chanakya’s Chant

“I’m not Amitav Ghosh, and I have no pretensions to write like that. If someone told me after he read my book that he loved my writing style, I’d be seriously worried. What I’d love to hear is: I read your book in four hours and it was a bloody good story.”

Ravinder Singh
I Too Had A Love Story..

“Can you think of one Booker author discovered in India?”

Durjoy Datta
Of Course I Love You..! Till I Find Someone Better...

“You don’t want a book by V.S. Naipaul when you take a train ride. They are kinda stressful. Why would I wrack my brain with all those hard words?”

Ritvik Mallik
Because You Loved Me..

“Mr Bhagat is an inspiration. He revolutionised Indian reading. Hats off to him.”

*** The End ***

Chetan Bhagat tells us a short story...

(one of d best short stories in recent times... concerning d most imp. aspect of youth's lives... about Higher Education in India.. about d ques -- What after class XII ?!...... a must-must-read for every literate person... !!!!)

Everyone will give you an opinion on how to live your life. No one, no one will give you good advice on how to end it. Worse, they will tell you to continue living, without any respect for individual choice. Yes, hi, I’m Gautam Arora, and after eighteen wonderful years in Delhi, I’ve decided to end my life.

I sat with my best friend Neeraj and his girlfriend Anjali at Costa Coffee, DLF Metropolitan Mall in Saket. The coffee is way overpriced, but considering I had a day to live, I didn’t mind getting ripped off.

“The joke isn’t that funny,” Neeraj said, tearing open the second sachet of brown sugar and mixing it for his girlfriend. If this girl can’t mix sugar in her coffee, I wonder what she will be like after marriage.

“Do I look like I am joking? You are in medical college, and as a friend and someone two years elder to me, I am asking your advice on what is the most painless, graceful way to go. And ideally, it should be available at the friendly neighbourhood chemist,” I said. I ordered a chocolate fudge cake. What are a few extra calories on your last day?

Anjali kept quiet, her iPod plugged in her ears. She had come to the mall to shop with her boyfriend rather than meet me. Neeraj said he only dated Anjali as her father had given her a car and driver, which made it easy to go around. Besides, she looked ok. She was pretty enough to invite a second stare from men, though that’s hardly an achievement in Delhi where men’s standards can be quite modest.

“Dude, you topped your school. How much did you score in your class XII boards again?” Neeraj said.
“Ninety two per cent,” I said.
“Ninety what?” Neeraj said as he ripped out Anjali’s earphones, “Anjali, the dude scored ninety two per cent in commerce! Do you know of anyone who has scored that much?”
Anjali shook her head.
“Wow, you must have studied a lot,” she said.
I nodded. I had done nothing but study in the last two years.
“No time for hobbies?” she said.
I shook my head. My only hobbies were eating three meals and sleeping five hours a day. The rest of the time was with my books.
“With ninety two, you should be fine,” Neeraj said.
“Not according to SRCC, not according to Stephen’s and not according to Hindu, oh what the heck,” I said as I opened my rucksack.
I gave him the special admissions supplement from the newspaper. I had snucked it out early morning so mom and dad wouldn’t see it.
“Wow, check out Lady Sri Ram. B.Com Honours is at 95.5 per cent!” Neeraj said.
“That’s a girl’s college,” Anjali said.
“I know,” I said.
“Don’t worry, he wouldn’t have made it anyway. Anjali, why don’t you go spend some of your father’s money,” Neeraj said and winked at me.
Anjali and I both gave Neeraj a dirty look. Neeraj air-kissed Anjali and gestured to her to leave.

Seriously, don’t kill yourself. To us, you are still the school topper,” Neeraj said after Anjali left.
“So what do I do?” I said, my voice loud, “stay back in school? This topper tag makes things worse. My parents already threw a party for our friends and relatives like I have made it big time in life. I cut a cake with the icing ‘family superstar’.”
“Nice,” Neeraj said.
“Not nice at all. All relatives congratulated my mother. They see me as the next hotshot investment banker on Wall Street. The least they expect me to do is get into a good college in DU.”
“There are still some colleges that you will get,” Neeraj said as I cut him off.
“But none with the same brand value. Thus, you can’t get a decent job after them. You can’t get into the top MBA school.”
Neeraj pushed my coffee cup towards me. I hadn’t touched it. I picked it up and brought it close to my mouth but couldn’t drink it.
“I made one tiny calculation error in my math paper,” I said, “read one stupid unit conversion wrong. That’s it. If only...”
“If only you could chill out. You are going to college, dude! Branded or not, it is always fun.”
“Screw fun,” I said.
“What kind of kids are they taking in anyway?” Neeraj said, “you have to be a bean-counter stickler to get ninety seven per cent. Like someone who never takes chances and revises the paper twenty times.”
“I don’t know, I revised it five times. That stupid calculation...”
“Gautam, relax. That paper is done. And sticklers don’t do well in life. Innovative and imaginative people do.”
“That’s not what DU thinks. You don’t understand, my father has proclaimed in his office I will join SRCC. I can’t go to him with a second rung college admission. It’s like his whole life image will alter. Hell, I won’t be able to deal with it myself.”

An SMS from Anjali on Neeraj’s phone interrupted our conversation. At Kimaya, tried fab dress. Come urgently, want your opinion. Neeraj typed the reply back. Honey, it looks great. Buy it.

Neeraj grinned as he showed me his response. “I think you should go,” I said. Rich dads’ daughters can throw pretty nasty tantrums. Neeraj took out the money for coffee. I stopped him. “My treat,” I said. Leave people happy on your last day, I thought. “Of course, I take this as your treat for cracking your boards,” Neeraj said and smiled. He ruffled my hair and left. I came out of the mall and took an auto home.

I met my parents at the dinner table. “So when will the university announce the cut-offs?” my father said.
“In a few days,” I said. I looked up at the dining table fan. No, I couldn’t hang myself. I can’t bear suffocation.
My mother cut mangoes after dinner. The knife made me think of slitting my wrists. Too painful, I thought and dropped the idea.

“So now, my office people are asking me, ‘when is our party?’,” my father said as he took a slice.
“I told you to call them to the party we did for neighbours and relatives,” my mother said.

“How will they fit with your brothers and sisters? My office people are very sophisticated,” my father said.
“My brothers are no less sophisticated. They went to Singapore last year on vacation. At least they are better than your family,” she said.
My father laughed at my mother’s sullen expression. His happiness levels had not receded since the day I received my result.

“My office people want drinks, not food. Don’t worry, I’ll do another one for them when he gets into SRCC or Stephen’s.”
My father worked in the sales division of Tata Tea. We had supplied our entire set of neighbours with free tea for the last five years. As a result, we had more well-wishers than I’d have liked.
“Even my country head called to congratulate me for Gautam. He said – nothing like Stephen’s for your brilliant son,” my father said.
“Gupta aunty came from next door. She wanted to see if you can help her daughter who is in class XI,” my mother said.
Is she pretty, I wanted to ask, but didn’t. It didn’t matter.

I came to my room post dinner. I hadn’t quite zeroed down on the exact method, but thought I should start working on the suicide letter anyway. I didn’t want it to be one of the clichéd ones – I love you all and it is no one’s fault, and I’m sorry mom and dad. Yuck, just like first impressions, last impressions are important too. In fact, I didn’t want to do any silly suicide letter. When it is your last, you’d better make it important. I decided to write it to the education minister. I switched on my computer and went to the Education Department website. Half the site links were broken. There was a link called “What after class XII?” I clicked on it, it took me to a blank page with an under construction sign. I sighed as I closed the site. I opened Microsoft Word to type.
Dear Education Minister,
I hope you are doing fine and the large staff of your massive bungalow is treating you well. I won’t take much of your time.
I’ve passed out of class XII and I’ve decided to end my life. I scored ninety-two per cent in my boards, and I have a one foot high trophy from my school for scoring the highest. However, there are so many trophy holding students in this country and so few college seats, that I didn’t get into a college that will train me to the next level or open up good opportunities.

I know I have screwed up. I should have worked harder to get another three per cent. However, I do want to point out a few things to you. When my parents were young, certain colleges were considered prestigious. Now, forty years later, the same colleges are considered prestigious. What’s interesting is that no new colleges have come up with the same brand or reputation level. Neither have the seats expanded in existing colleges fast enough to accommodate the rising number of students.

I’ll give you an example. Just doing some meaningless surfing, I saw that 3.8 lakh candidates took the CBSE class XII exam in 1999, a number that has grown to 8.9 lakh in 2009. This is just one board, and if you take ICSE and all other state boards, the all India total number is over ten times that of CBSE. We probably had one crore students taking the class XII exam this year.

While not everyone can get a good college seat, I just want to talk about the so-called good students. The top 10 per cent alone of these one crore students is ten lakh children. Yes, these ten lakh students are their class toppers. In a class of fifty, they will have the top-5 ranks.

One could argue that these bright kids deserve a good college to realise their full potential. Come to think of it, it would be good for our country too if we train our bright children well to be part of the new, shining, gleaming, glistening or whatever you like to call the globalised India.

But then, it looks like you have stopped making universities. Are there ten lakh top college seats in the country? Are there even one lakh? Ever wondered what happens to the rest of us, year after year? Do we join a second rung college? A deemed university? A distance learning programme? A degree in an expensive, racist country?

Your government runs a lot of things. You run an airline that never makes money. You run hotels. You want to be involved in making basic stuff like steel and aluminum, which can easily be made by more efficient players. However, in something as important as
shaping the young generation, you have stepped back. You have stopped making new universities. Why?

You have all the land you want, teachers love to get a government job, education funds are never questioned. Still, why? Why don’t we have new, A-grade universities in every state capital for instance?
Oh well, sorry. I am over reacting. If only I had not done that calculation error in my math paper, I’d be fine. In fact, I am one of the lucky ones. In four years, the number of candidates will double. So then we will have a college that only has 99 per cent scorers.

My parents were a bit deluded about my abilities, and I do feel bad for them. I didn’t have a girlfriend or too many friends, as people who want to get into a good college are not supposed to have a life. If only I knew that slogging for twelve years would not amount to much, I’d have had more fun.
Apart from that, do well, and say hello to the PM, who as I understand, used to teach in college.
Yours truly,
(Poor student)

I took a printout of the letter and kept it in my pocket. I decided to do the act the next morning. I woke up as the maid switched off the fan to sweep the room. She came inside and brought a box of sweets. A fifty-year-old woman, she had served us for over ten years. “What?” I said as she gave me the box. It had kaju-barfi, from one of the more expensive shops in the city. The maid had spent a week’s salary distributing sweets to anyone known to her. “My son passed class XII,” she said as she started her work. “How much did he score?” I said, still rubbing my eyes. “Forty two per cent. He passed English too,” she said as her face beamed with pride. “What will he do now?” I said. “I don’t know. Maybe his own business, he can repair mobile phones,” she said.

I went to the bathroom for a shower. I realised the newspaper would have come outside. I ran out of the bathroom. I picked up the newspaper from the entrance floor. I took out the admissions supplement, crumpled it and threw it in the dustbin kept outside the house. I came back inside the house and went back into the shower.
I left the house mid-day. I took the metro to Chandni Chowk and asked my way to the industrial chemicals market. Even though I had left science after class X, I knew that certain chemicals like Copper Sulphate or Ammonium Nitrate could kill you. I bought a pack of both compounds. As I passed through the lanes of Chandni Chowk, I passed a tiny hundred square feet jalebi shop. It did brisk business. I thought my last meal had to be delicious. I went to the counter and took a quarter kilo of jalebis.

I took my plate and sat on one of the two rickety benches placed outside the shop.

A Muslim couple with a four-year-old boy came and sat on the next bench. The mother fed the boy jalebi and kissed him after each bite. It reminded me of my childhood and my parents, when they used to love me unconditionally and marks didn’t exist. I saw the box of Ammonium Nitrate and tears welled up in my eyes. I couldn’t eat the jalebis. I came back home. I wondered if I should use my chemicals before or after dinner. Maybe it is better after everyone has slept, I thought.

We sat at the dinner table. Dad had told mom not to cook as he’d brought Chinese takeaway for us. Mom brought the soya sauce, chilli oil and the vinegar with cut green chillies in little katoris. We ate American chopsuey on stainless steel plates. I looked at my watch, it was 8 pm. Three more hours, I thought as I let out a sigh.

“One thing Kalpana,” my father said to my mother, “job candidates aren’t what they used to be these days. I interviewed for new trainees today, disappointing.”
“Why, what happened?” my mother said.
“Like this boy from Stephen’s, very bright kid. But only when it came to his subjects.”
“Really?” my mother said.
“Yeah, but I asked him a different question. I said how would you go about having a tea-shop chain like the coffee shop chains, and he went blank,” my father said, an inch of noodle hanging outside his mouth. My mother removed it from his face.
“And then some kid from SRCC. He topped his college. But you should have seen his arrogance. Even before the interview starts, he says ‘I hope at the end of our meeting, you will be able to tell me why I should join Tata Tea and not another company’. Can you imagine? I am twice his age.”

I could tell my father was upset from his serious tone.
“If you ask me,” my father continued, “the best candidate was a boy from Bhopal. Sure, he didn’t get into a top college. But he was an eighty per cent student. And he said ‘I want to learn. And I want to show that you don’t need a branded college to do well in life. Good people do well anywhere.’ What a kid. Thank God we shortlisted him in the first place.”
“Did he get the job?” I said.

“Yes, companies need good workers, not posh certificates. And we are having a meeting to discuss our short listing criteria again. The top colleges are so hard to get in, only tunnel vision people are being selected.” “Then why are you asking him to join Stephen’s or SRCC?” my mother said.

My father kept quiet. He spoke after a pause. “Actually, after today, I’d say don’t just go by the name. Study the college, figure out their dedication, and make sure they don’t create arrogant nerds. Then whatever the brand, you will be fine. The world needs good people.”

I looked at my parents as they continued to talk. Excuse me, but I have a plan to execute here. And now you are confusing me, I thought. “So should I study some more colleges and make a decision after that?” I said. “Yes, of course. No need for herd-mentality. Kalpana you should have seen this boy from Bhopal.”

Post-dinner, my parents watched TV in the living room while eating fruits. I retracted to my room. I sat on my desk wondering what to do next. The landline phone rang in my parent’s room. I went inside and picked it up.
“Hello Gautam?” the voice on the other side said.
It was my father’s colleague from work. “Hello, Yash uncle,” I said. “Hi,” he said, “congratulations on your boards.” “Thanks uncle,” I said, “dad is in the living room finishing dinner, should I call him?” “Dinner? Oh, don’t disturb him. Just tell him his mobile is with me. It is safe. We were on a field trip today. He left it in my car.” “Field trip? For interviews?” I said. “What interviews? No, we just went to the Chandigarh office,” he said.

I wished him good night and hung up the phone. I switched on the bedside lamp in my parents’ room. Confused, I sat down on my father’s bed, wondering what to do next. To make space, I moved his pillow. Under the pillow lay a crumpled newspaper. I picked it up. It was the same admissions supplement I had tossed in the bin this morning. My father had circled the cut-offs table.

I left the newspaper there and came to the living room. My father was arguing with my mother over the choice of channels. I looked at my father. He smiled at me and offered me watermelon. I declined.

I came back to my room. I picked up the chemical boxes and took them to the toilet. I opened both boxes and poured the contents in the toilet commode. One press, and everything, everything flushed out.

“Gautam,” my mother knocked on the door, “I forgot to tell you. Gupta aunty came again. Can you teach her daughter?”
“Maybe,” I said as I came out of the toilet, “by the way, is she pretty?”

*** The End ***

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


an awesome poem.. by Satyanshu n Devanshu... d duo behind ultimate hindi poems in d movie Udaan... told from d point of view of lead character Rohan...

(this was d poem hearing which Vikramaditya Motwane.. director of Udaan.. finalised other poems of d duo in d movie.. bt this one didn't find a landing place due to its non-link wid movie theme... but an absolute must-read:)

आदत उस परवाज़ की पड़ी है जिसके कुछ पार भी नहीं,
वहाँ जहाँ का सफ़र मिले तो चाहूँ मैं घर-बार भी नहीं,
वहाँ जहाँ से जहाँ खिलौने जैसा लगता है देखो तो,
वहाँ जहाँ होने को हो फिर पंखों की दरकार भी नहीं.

कच्ची किरणें सोख जहाँ अम्बर कुछ भूना चाह रहा हो,
घटता – बढ़ता हुआ चाँद अब कद से दूना चाह रहा हो,
कभी अब्र का कोमल टुकड़ा उलझ गया पैरों में ऐसे,
जैसे बारिश बने बिना मिट्टी को छूना चाह रहा हो.

ख्वाबों के पंखों पर उड़ता-उड़ता रोज़ निकल जाता हूँ,
अरमानों का असर कि हो जो भी ज़ंजीर फिसल जाता हूँ,
नहीं अकेला पाता खुद को, खुद टुकड़ों में बिखर-बिखर कर
एक नयी मंजिल की कोशिश प्यास बने, मचल जाता हूँ.

ओस छिड़कती हुई भोर को पलकों से ढँक कर देखा है,
दिन के सौंधे सूरज को इन हाथों में रख कर देखा है,
शाम हुयी तो लाल-लाल किस्से जो वहाँ बिखर जाते हैं,
गयी शाम अपनी ‘उड़ान’ में मैंने वो चख कर देखा है.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Dhoni's batting woes... d real reason uncovered!

d problem wid recent Dhoni's batting 'prowess' is that... every cricketer in India or any other country.. goes thro' bad form.. then, they r dropped for a while to prove their mettle in domestic cricket n come out wid lot of sincerity n maturity at international level...

now.. Dhoni has not been dropped since he started playing ODIs for India... well.. even Sachin, Sehwag, Gambhir, Yuvi, Zaheer have gone thro' same phase several times in their career... now is d turn for Dhoni else he'll lose confidence in his own batting if this continues...

give Parthiv Patel a chance to come n do d same things he is going in Ranji for last couple of years.. Hail Indian Cricket Team!

p.s. -- d views expressed here r sole concerned analysis of d writer.. not copied from anywhere... inspired from divinity only! :P

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Is There Science Behind 2012 Prophecies?

-- Dr. Laurie Nadel speaks with Gregg Braden

Curious about the gloom and doom 2012 prophecies? Scientist Gregg Braden, the best-selling author of “Fractal Time,” puts it into real-time perspective.

Did you know that the Earth is presently moving across the equator of the Milky Way? When we talk about the changes that are coming up in 2012, some of those visible Earth changes are apparently in response to the astronomical changes that are being created by the Earth’s crossing of the Equator of the Milky Way.

In an interview with Dr. Laurie Nadel, Gregg Braden talks about the Mayan 2012 prophecies and what they mean to us today.

Q: You say that 2012 is not the end of the world but the end of a world age—a 5,125-year cycle of time?

Braden: Some people speak about 2012 like any other news story that you hear about every day. Others who may not have heard anything about 2012 say, “What’s the big deal about a date?”

Q: Maybe they think it’s like Y2K.

Braden: Precisely! I was an engineer, working in the defense industry in the 1980s when I first began hearing about the year 2012. Some people were saying, literally, “It’s the end of the world.” Others said, “It’s the end of the world as we know it.” And some even said, “It’s the beginning of a thousand years of peace.”

Everyone I asked had a different opinion. What I discovered as a scientist was that the only way that I would know what 2012 was all about was to understand the people who created the calendars that tell us about 2012. And the only way to understand them was to understand great cycles of time.

Q: What do you mean when you say, “cycles of time?”

Braden: Science now is telling us that we, on this planet, our lives, and our planet in general, are under the influence of great cycles of time; cycles within cycles, within cycles. Some of the cycles we know about, like the 24-hour cycle of the day for day and night, or the 28-days of a woman’s cycle. But the great cycles cover such vast periods of time that we don’t remember them from one civilization to the next. Our present great cycle is a 5,125-year-long cycle linked to an astronomical event that occurred in the year 3114 B.C.

Q: Now, that’s almost incomprehensible for people—3114 B.C.

Braden: It ends on December 21, the Winter Solstice, December 21, 2012 A.D.

Q: And in that moment or on that day, the sun, you say, is going to move into an alignment with the equator of the Milky Way.

Braden: What happens during this time—and we have to be really careful when we talk about this—there is an alignment that’s occurring because Earth does this little tip and this little wobble over long periods of time. As Earth changes — tips and wobbles in its orbit, it changes the scenery of the night sky. It changes our orientation in space with respect to the center of our own Milky Way galaxy.

Scientists have discovered—and they are publishing this openly—that the center of our Milky Way galaxy is a very powerful source of magnetic energy. The term they use is “magnetic filiments” that radiate from the center of our Milky Way. Where we are, in relation to that source of energy, has a huge effect on planet Earth. Sometimes we’re further away, and we’re tilted away from it, and the effect is less. Sometimes we’re closer or we’re tilted toward it, and the effect is greater.

On December 21st in the year 2012, we have a straight shot—a linear shot, unobstructed by any other planets or any other bodies in the solar system–where we have direct access to that field of energy.

Q: Now, does this mean that the magnetic poles are going to shift, and we’re going to have three days of darkness?

Braden: There is no scientific evidence to support that.

Q: I’m glad to hear that.

Braden: There has been a lot of speculation about it. The magnetic poles have certainly reversed in the past. I can tell you as a former geologist that we can see that in the geologic record, 14 times in the last 4-1/2 million years.

Each time, before the magnetic fields reversed, they had to weaken to a certain point before that reversal happened. Even though we have seen a decrease in the magnetic field strength of the Earth over the last 100 years or so, it is still so much higher than the measurement that is needed for it to reverse that the probability of this happening in the next three years between 2009 and 2012 or even a year or two after, it looks like it’s a slim probability. We’ve got so many other things to worry about.

Q: Are there new discoveries that show that we can think of time as an essence that follows the same rhythms and cycles that govern everything from particles to galaxies? Can we think of these things that happen in time as places within cycles?

Braden: The bottom line is that time is essentially a wave that is moving in one direction. Right now it’s moving from the present to the future. So, the seeds for things that are happening today and events like 2012 that are yet to happen have already occurred in the past.

If we know where to look into the past, it gives us a good idea of what we can expect in the present and the future. Time’s waves follow natural rhythms, cycles, and natural progressions. This means that we can measure, calculate, and predict when the seeds – the conditions — for an event are going to happen again, and again, and again. This means that we can take the year 2012 calculate backwards, using natural rhythms to the times in our history when the seed for 2012 was planted. Looking at the seed, we can determine when the patterns and events that will happen in 2012 were set into motion. We can go into the geologic record to see what was happening then on the planet. Or we can go into the archaeological record to see what was happening to people to give us a really good idea of what we can expect over these next few years.

Q You talk about how the conditions for the Mayan end-date of 2012 have already happened in our past.

Braden: Absolutely!

Q: What can we do to prepare for Earth changes that are going to happen in 2012?

Braden: To prepare for whatever is happening, we have to understand what it is that’s going to happen. This is the value of knowing precisely where to look in the past to understand what we’re about to experience or what we’re already experiencing now.

Q: Now, you talked about Pearl Harbor and 2001 as being years that were kind of hot dates when, in fact, the United States was, both times, attacked. What are some of the other hot dates that you refer to in the book?

Braden: For 2012, the records show that when we’ve look into the history of the Earth, into the ice cores in Antarctica, for example, it preserved a record of Earth’s past. When we look into those ice cores at the dates that are the fractals or the seed patterns for 2012, they tell us that in those dates the magnetic fields of the Earth became weaker. The energy from the sun was stronger so that the ice on the poles began to melt. The oceans began to rise, the climate began to shift, and the weather patterns began to change.

Q: We are experiencing that now.

Braden: Precisely, and that is the whole point. Has the Earth gone through a big change? Yes. Does it mean that something is wrong or something is broken? No! It always happens when we reach this point in a great cycle. When we are this distance from the energy source at the center of our Milky Way, when Earth is tilted and oriented the way it is, apparently, this is what always happens.

Therefore, to a large extent, we are already experiencing the great changes that so many have predicted. We are already seeing cities wiped off the face of the Earth near shallow coastlines. We are already seeing major magnitude earthquakes and tsunamis. We are already seeing forest fires ranging them across vast, open spaces. We are seeing millions of people die from disease. The United States is blessed in that we’re not experiencing as much here as in other parts of the world. But such change can happen anywhere and everywhere.

Q: The take-away message…?

Braden: It is good for us to prepare and to help other people that are having the problems of feeling the brunt of these changes. But here is the core: The geologic records show that the changes are intense; absolutely intense, but that they’re brief. They don’t last for generation, after generation, after generation. The archaeological records show that when past civilizations reach the point in their cycle where we are in right now, they made a mistake that we don’t want to repeat today.

Q: What was that mistake?

Braden: When the world began to change, civilizations of the past didn’t understand the change. They began to fight one another for the resources. In that violent competition for what was left when the world was changing, everyone lost. Nobody won. The civilizations collapsed. For example, Egypt’s 20th dynasty absolutely collapsed during precisely this period of time and no one even knew about them until thousands of years later.

We are at a point right now where we must choose to work together for this brief period of time to bring ourselves through this time of change. If we make the mistakes of the past and everyone loses. This why I feel that this book is so important right now.

Q: A lot of people kind of feel helpless when they start listening to stories about ancient civilizations collapsing. They think about tsunamis and Katrina, and it’s very hard for people not to feel overwhelmed by the great scope of planetary movements and fractal time. For what can people hope?

Braden: The Global Coherence Initiative is all about our relationship to the Earth through heart-based living.

Q: What is heart-based living?

Braden: In the past few years, our own science has made a radical, revolutionary discovery that changes everything about the way we think of ourselves and the world. What they found is that when we create heart-based feelings of gratitude, appreciation, care—literally, using the muscle of the heart to create these feelings—what we’re actually doing is generating a magnetic field inside our bodies that is part of the magnetic field of the Earth that undergoes the change.

The Earth’s magnetic field rises, falls, and regulates everything from climate to ice caps and sea levels. This magnetic field joins all life on Earth from a blade of grass, to an ant, to a goldfish, to a hamster, to us. When many of us come together and create a common feeling, that experience is called “coherence.” “Coherence” can actually be measured. It is 0.10 Hertz. That is the measurement of the coherence created between the heart and the brain.
Scientists first found out about this during 9/11 when our satellites 22,000 miles in space began to register changes in the magnetic field of the Earth, when humans were having feelings about September 11th and the World Trade Center. This is a surprise to science. They asked, “Why would people experiencing 9/11, why would that possibly affect the magnetic fields of the Earth? There’s no connection, right?” Well, wrong. They found that there is a connection and this has led to what is called the Global Coherence Initiative Project.

Scientists are now building the sensors that can measure these magnetic fields and put them up onto the website where you can watch the fields change everyday in real time. In addition to measuring this field, the Global Coherence Project aims is to teach people how to create coherence in their everyday lives. It’s not a hard thing to do, and you don’t have to change your lives to do it. You don’t have to change your meditations, your prayers, or any practice. It’s a way of being in our hearts as we go throughout the day that’s very easy to learn.

Q: So, it’s kind of an awareness or biofeedback-type training.

Braden: That is part of it. When we create this coherence inside our bodies, it triggers about 1,400 biochemical changes. Anti-aging processes begin. DHEA level—the life-giving hormone—surges in our bodies. Our immune systems become really strong. We think more clearly. We become less aggressive. The magnetic fields of the heart are now being documented. We are facing the greatest challenges of 5,000 years of recorded human history. As we face the great challenges of our time, we are asking, “What can we do?” Here’s what we can do: We can learn the language of the magnetic field that is creating the changes and help bring that field from chaos into order.

We can influence the very fields that are creating the change. The fear about 2012 is stressing a lot of people but we have the ability to regulate the magnetic field by regulating the way that we work together through our hearts. The key is: we’ve got to work together to do it. ###

Interview by Laurie Nadel, Ph.D.
Host of The Dr. Laurie Show

(Laurie Nadel, Ph.D. has a dual career in psychology and journalism. She spent 20 years as a journalist for major news organizations, including CBS News and The New York Times. The author of the best-seller Sixth Sense: Unlocking Your Ultimate Mind Power (ASJA Press, 2007), she has appeared on “Oprah.”

Dr. Laurie completed post-doctoral training at Harvard Medical School’s Institute for Mind/Body Medicine. In addition to her formal education and professional experience, she draws on her apprenticeships with traditional healers to help others overcome their fears and live their dreams.

She specializes in coaching people around the world who want to tap into their creativity and intuition so that they can think ahead of the curve and be ready for change.)

Vikas Pratap Singh
(vps.. d royal warrior)
!! aa wahaan milein jahaan.. dilon pe bandishen na hon.. zameen pe sarhadein na hon !!

Saturday, January 8, 2011


एक ही कक्षा में,

एक ही दिशा में,

एक ही धुरी पर ,

एक ही तरह से घुमते हुए,

पृथ्वी भी कभी ऊब जाती होगी,

तभी फिर चाँद को छुपा कर,

कभी सूरज को ओढ़ कर

खेल खेला करती है ,

विविध -विचित्र ....

और कभी घोर नैराश्य में डूब जाती होगी,

अंतस में कचोटते अवसाद ,

उत्खनन की पीढ़ा भी होगी .. क्षत -विक्षत अंगों में ,

तभी फिर विचलित होती है

कभी कराहती है ,थरथराती है,

जब दर्द उठता होगा कहीं . .

जब अंक में कुछ बल घट जाता होगा ..//

फिर सहसा ही ख़याल आता है, कहते कहते ..

सुनने वाले भी कुछ अचरज में हों शायद,

धरती की वेदना से ,

किसी का हृदय - संचार क्यों सहवास करने लगा . .

तब स्व के भाव में आकर ..कहता हूँ ,

ये कुछ नहीं ..

बस इक स्वार्थपोषित प्रयास है

अपनी घुटन को ,

एक दुसरे उबास से अनुनादित करने का ..!