India Nostalgia


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He reached his office in 10 minutes. Five minutes before the clock struck 8. He had defeated time once more. A familiar world of computer screens, guzzling printers and alert eyes watching the screens greeted him. He sat down at his desk, sliped for a cup of coffee and began burning his eyes staring hard at the monitor. He alternated between the file on his table and that on his laptop. He looked at the phone with lights blinking alert for voicemails on display. He scribbles few notes and manipulated a third time his \”to-do\” priority list. He minimized the windows on his laptop screen and stared at the desktop. The wallpaper was a collage of him and his family and friends. He remembers about the good time he had at his native for the vacation few months back.

He quckily realized the load of work he has to finish before he could rest. But soon, there rings an alarm from a stomach that is too hungry, a mind that is tired and a conscience that is slightly weak . Sleep, the angel with a lullaby on her lips visited and broke the clockwork. She asked him to dream. He obeyed and stood at Yogeshwar (kiosk) enjoying his 2 katting chai with bun butter and hurried to Adhsath Panchoter (6875 – Rikshaw) and reached the railway station. He hurries towards the platform but takes a sudden halt, his face looked tensed and he starts checking all his pockets. He started running in opposite direction and stops at Mastana for his double_sev_marke Dabeli. With a smile of satisfaction, he stands at the platform waiting for his Queen (Train). Like a ray of hope, he sees a glowing light at a far distance marching towards him with proud aggression. His desperation to meet faces wearing laughters and glittering gestures was prominently seen in his restlessly tapping legs. There were more running legs and chaotic spread of emotions. As Queen passed by, a strong gush of air and dust came along with it. He could barely keep his eyes open. He struggled and tried harder and finally he succedded but now he sensed a strange calmness,… it was the same world of paper, pen and computers. Yeah… the angel …she had quietly slipped away.

The creature in his soul frowned again. And he realizes.. he is again missing his part of the world.. where he belongs.

Well this story would not be different to most of us. I wonder how stupid we were at INDSA (Indian Student Association) when we created a tag-line for our banner – Creating Home Away from Home ! Did we succeed ? YAH RIGHT !… in my dreams may be !

But however may my world differ from yours, with all the inflated egos digging my gravity – it will still be mine.. forever !

(On a bright news flash – Supreme Court: Reservations can not be permanent)

 

H A P P Y I N D E P E N D E N C E  D A Y !!!

LOVE YOU INDIA !

Shah / Nirav ™
© Copyrights 2007 Nirav Shah. Some rights Reserved !

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Destiny of Dreams


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Desires, hopes, wishes, needs, dreams, searches, quests, curiosity and many more words make up synonymous meaning to life. They come in stages and leave a mark. Each mark creates another hope. They grow, they build and they refurbish, but still they do exist at different levels. They create a harmonic imbalance in your mind and lets you believe that there\’s something more to life than just being ME. Eventually, you lurk to get back to the balance.

After a very rough day and total exasperation, I managed to get to bed early. Pleasantly moving in deep sleep, I dreamt of what I always had dreamed of. I was standing desperately at the conveyer belt waiting to get my baggage. I couldnt wait a second more to get out of the airport and be with those whom I always wanted to be with. I knew, there were eyes, deperately watching and waiting outside to get the first glance at me. Finally, I walked out of the airport with my stero-typical huge smile and eyes curiously anticipating some familiar faces. And my journey began …

Moving through scorching heat, shady neighbourhoods and unconditioned roads .. I still felt I was back home – a place where I belong to. Nothing and noone had changed except for the obvious physical differences. But the better part to realize was, they found me no different than what I used to be. It made me believe that I had missed nothing in these years and everything was the same. The only thing that had possibly changed was my love and understanding towards them. I felt more connected than ever before. Probably the distance is what makes one closer.

29 days – thats about 700 hrs of powerfull life force. Each moment felt precious and worth the memory. I , for the first time, felt the need to create days with extended hours – 24 weren\’t enough. Each and every passing day the marginal satisfaction was surpassing huge waves.

I did everything – long drives and wrong drives. Eating and repeating.. dancing and glancing.. … morning nashta to late night pasta.. birthdays, parties, gathering, gaming, laughing, screaming, singing, nautanki, fighting, mocking, teasing, pranks ………….. Ahh !

Now and again, I stand at at the conveyer belt. Things were different now. My eyes repeatedly turned back to see if I could see the same curious eyes, even a glance. But theirs were now wet and so were mine !…. And a little part of my journey was going to end.

Living and believing has something in common or else I wouldnt have had done both. Gone days wont come back, but I know.. something that would for sure would be ME.. I WOULD BE BACK ! With this new thought and a smile on face, I jumped back in reality with the some spiced up excitement to life with new hopes to chase !

Thanks to everone who made my dream worth while. Probably they wont ever know what they meant to me.

Bless all

Shah / Nirav TM
© Copyrights 2007 Nirav Shah. Some rights Reserved !

India Poised ?


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Definition:

India: A country with rising economy, creating promised hopes, striving youth and triumph of trust
India: A country with lots of dismays and illusions, myths and manifestations struggles and giggles

Poised: marked by balance or equilibrium and readiness for action; in full control

I always believed, defining India is impossible. I love India for what it is rather than what it isn\’t. Times of India is on a new mission to market the Brand India. Motive is to energize and pump-up the resting youthful souls and vigorize the success movement. The whole aura of the campaign seems to be done with honesty and I feel it has charmed quite well. The campaign paves even a greater pace when an icon like Amitabh Bachchan comes right in front of you and talks directly into your heart with his sheer ravishing resonant voice. It just makes you feel – THATS IT! India is the world I have always been looking for. Even the world outside India now believes that the world inside India has unleashed its powers. \”India is poised\”

 

But somehow I feel cheated. Thanks to Times of India for making me hear what I always wanted to hear. Marketing strategies are no different, the product marketed here is now a COUNTRY. A part of me wanted to listen to more of it. Why not ? It had my favorite personalities of all time, Amitabh Bachchan, who was convincing me that Superpower India is REAL. The anthem talks about the existance of Bullish economy as well as the derogatorily stubborn cash flow. It conveys precisely that even though there are unsuccessfull attempts, victory seems to be just few miles away. While the other part of me is still skeptic and unconvinced, not being a pessimist; but it questions its credibility to lure truth. Do we really need this NOW ? Isn\’t it too early?

The Fast Facts:

It is the daring of India which had its economy growing at 9.2 percent as latest count. It is an India which has actually reduced the number of absolute poor — that is, living on less than a dollar a day — by 120 million in about a decade to around 260 million now. It is an India which, is believed likely to surpass the US economy in size in fifty years to become the world’s second largest economy after China

Concurrently, education is a key area where we are inadequate in performance, despite the full blown hype about the IITs and IIMs being among the world’s best. Not only is primary education in a major mess, our universities figure nowhere in the top league of the world’s institutions of higher learning. Our roads, ports and power systems have a long way to go before they are truly supportive of growth instead of being hindrances. And our public services, which need radical reform, continues to plunge down because no one in the educated middle and upper classes actually depend on them. The poor take the hit.

India may have the smartest Prime Minister and over qualified President to sustain the wisely engineered progress. But still the inflation has rose significantly to encourage domestic instability. Rising cases of debted farmers commiting suicide, earning teenagers disowning their parents; girls raped by police and citizens raped by deceitful media are yet not still under consideration. With the further welcoming of Giants like Reliance and Walmart into Indian retail market it can be expected to break the spines of millions of other small scale business owners. Any plans doctored for their stability so far ?

Words flowing from deep-rooted sesitivity of the poet, Masterly rendered by the born actor; in his deep, resonant voice is definitely creating the precise impact. But these sights dampen my spirit. We are proud of our achievements but are we doing enough as citizens to lessen this disparity?

India may be poised, but I want my India to be Independently Stabilized and not a divided India.

Visit: http://www.indiapoised.com

 

Shah / Nirav TM
© Copyrights 2006 Nirav Shah. Some rights Reserved !

And now its A National Song !


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Its a deeper disgrace! Bankim Chandra would have ever thought that his song that had inspired hundreds to unite and fight is the same to ingnite hatred among millions. May be thats why we call – mystic tunes have beats of red notes.

The world is watching, and they might be thinking. Why does it always have to revolve around Islam ? I have many of my friend from the so-called minority community but never did I feel that they had a conflicting national and religious sentiments. 

Vande Mataram.
  Bow to you, my mother land! 
You are blessed with rushing streams,
You are bestowed with fertile soil,
You are glorified by cool breeze,
and the dark waving fields!
Pure as the bright heavenly stars,
Adorned with blossoming gardens.
With an enchanting smile,
With words as sweet as nector,
Bestow your blessings on me!
Lovilest of all earthly lands,
Mother great and free!

[Can someone tell me where\’z religious sentiment getting hurt ? I can\’t find Durga or Allah mentioned either]
National Song is song of the nation and nation is beyond caste, creed and religion. We live in our country, we have to behave like its citizen and abide by the rules and regulations. Burning buses, killing innocents, killing merit after singing Vande Mataram is not patriotism.

Islamic hardliner around the globe are making it difficult for moderate muslim to live peacefully. Atmosphere is full of hatred now. Every muslim is looked down as a terrorist these day. Its high time that they (common muslims) should shun such religious zealots. After all, the hardcore reality is – what the world needs the most is peace and not god or allah or bhagwan.

Truly sad , a needless controversy is being created about a very inspiring song. Thank god we have AR Rahman in our midst to give a suitable and inspiring musical reply to the fatwa spewing mullahs. Arjun Singh has again managed to create a needless controversy by first issuing an order for its singing and then rescinding his order. No wonder we end up supporting BJP.

The whole matter has unnecessarily been given a communal touch. Though in a democracy, nobody can be forced to do anything but in a multi-ethnic country like India, it is very necessary to have some strong binding force like patriotism. \’Vande Mataram\’ is our national song and if any indian does not feel patriotic while singing this song then he should not sing it irrespective of his religion but don\’t spoil the beauty of the song by dissecting it and misinterpreting it.

It now seems that Indians ate more interested in religion than the country itself. Its a pity that we are fighting for the reason where national song is it be sung by all or not!

(Forword: Sindh (river) – Sindhu – Shindh – Ind (Indus valley) – Hind – Hindu – Hinda\’ – India  ! Ring the bells ?)

Shah / Nirav ™ 
© Copyrights 2006 Nirav Shah.  Some rights Reserved !

I bow to you, my mother

What is India ? Quest series # 4


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There are so many sides to India, so many ways to look at it. You could say it\’s just an idea, a whole bunch of things you relate with it and that you can relate to. It\’s also a political entity, an economy, a culture- a mixture of cultures, a group of people- over a billion of them.

India, as an idea- a dream, is perfect. There\’s a unique India for everyone. The way I look at it, as an Indian, is to try and integrate India with all its physical reality with  India that lies in that idea of perfection. Perfection is limitless. At no point can it be touched. We can only get close to it. But how does that happen?

They say that India is becoming unlivable. That there is this system that cannot be changed. So what if the economy is growing and people are getting richer (in theory, at least)? It\’s true to an extent. Having lived outside India for about 2 years, and following the news and everything, I kind of felt like India was changing for the better. People would want to go back now- jobs are being created and wages are increasing. India, the economy, is looking good. But is that all there is to a country, an ECONOMY ???  Change happens. To me, this whole \”booming economy\” thing is more by coincidence than by design.

Living in India is completely different. The \”system\” still exists. If something illegal is happening around you, they say you should ignore it. Does it go away if you pretend it doesn\’t exist? Does it not happen again if you ignore it once? Our \”let it go\” attitude is responsible for this whole system, where bribes are almost impossible to do without and where the concept of punishment exists only to be applied on those who cannot afford to buy their way out.

We blame the system. We blame our politicians. We blame low salaries for government employees. We blame corruption. That\’s it. We can just sit back and watch the fun, and let the \”system\” take care of everyth ing. It can\’t be changed after all.

Change happens. To MAKE it happen, you need power. You can\’t drive a car from 10 feet away (unless it\’s remote-controlled). You either need to be at the wheel yourself, or you need to put someone there AND control him/her. There\’s no other way. We need laws that work. But most importantly, we need to be able to implement those laws as uniformly as possible. And that\’s the hard part.

H A P P Y   I N D E P E N D E N C E   D A Y !!!

Shah / Nirav ™ 
© Copyrights 2006 Nirav Shah.  Some rights Reserved !

What is INDIA ? Quest series # 3


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There are a lot of people who really love India. I guess I am one of them. Some people call them fanatics and jingoists. After all, they say, \”We are citizens of the world and we belong to one race- the human race. Patriotism is just another form of selfishness and another source of division and discrimination.\” I agree. I am patriotic, and I love India more than any other country. A disaster in India means a lot more to me than a disaster in any other country. I am selfish, yes. But, what can they accuse me of? If they can accuse someone of being over-patriotic, they might as well accuse him of \”over-loving\” his mother.

If there was a fire in our area, I would save my house, my family first. Yes, I am selfish. I can claim to love the entire human race, and I can also say that love can never be compared, but all I know is, I feel a lot more for those I know. I love the people I can relate to a lot more than those I don\’t even know. I call it natural human behavior. According to me, it is extremely hard to be unselfish. The only way to reach that state of unselfishness is through losing (or letting go of) your \”self\”. I don\’t know if that\’s possible.

To me, India is just an extension of my family, and that\’s how it should be. I think that\’s how the world works. It is an organization of caring – with individuals caring about themselves at the grassroots. At the highest level, we have an individual caring about the entire universe. Most of our efforts go into caring about our own lives. I don\’t know if I\’m making sense. It\’s hard to confine thoughts to words without sacrificing their purity.

Some people say that patriotism is not justified. They say that countries are just pieces of land- geographical entities with political boundaries. I guess, to them, human beings are nothing more but orderly arrangements of chemical structures, and emotions are nothing but the physiological reactions resulting from the secretion of some hormones ?!? And the national flag is just a piece of cloth. I wonder why some people give up their lives to defend the honor of a piece of land- to make sure that the \”piece of cloth\” they love so much never has to bow in disgrace. Well, people are different…

Shah / Nirav ™
© Copyrights 2006 Nirav Shah. Some rights Reserved !

What is INDIA ? Quest series # 2


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I don\’t think it\’s humanly possible to describe India in words. To me, India is not a piece of land with over a billion humans and countless other life forms. India has to be felt. It is an idea, an emotion. Trying to define India is like trying to define existence of God. We know we can\’t define THE. If we could, we would end up being the all-knowing power that God is. Our imagination is finite. India isn\’t. So, trying to define India is futile.

That brings us back to the same question. What is India? I think it\’s one of those questions that don\’t have answers. But, there must be something that comes close to the definition of India or Indianism. I don\’t know. I do think that Indianism has got nothing to do with knowing the Indian national anthem or having an Indian passport.

I\’m trying to think of India and I can see these images passing by by eyes swiftly and smoothly .. all are random and I have definitely no control over them. I can see them, but I can\’t describe them. I can feel them, but I can\’t draw them. They aren\’t good or bad images, they\’re just images of what I might be thinking India is. I don\’t know where to start. I can see my home, my family, my friends. But, is that really all that India is to me? A place to call home? I don\’t know. Is India just these collection of random pics, voices, emotions, expressions, and memories of my family, friends and neighbourhood ? Try it yourself, what do you see when you think of India ? Is it just some memories of fun, laughter, disasters, stories and fictions ?

I wonder what it would be like if I didn\’t have an Indian passport- a proof of my citizenship (Indian-ness?). I see people in India whose only aim in life is to leave India and move to a more \”lucrative\” environment, dont blame them but I also do see people who\’ve left India and whose only aim in life is to go back to India to be with their family, their friends, their people- to be home. Why? What is so much that India has to offers that tends to drag us back home ? What on earth is special about that \”peace\” of land that makes us crave and reminds us every day we look our faces in mirror ? Quest is still on. I am here just to go further with trying to define INDIA.. and my search is still on, and will go on.

But I, my soul, gets assured that India is a lot more than just THAT. I take my India with me wherever I go. My India lies in my thoughts, and that\’s where home is…at least for me.

Shah / Nirav ™ 
© Copyrights 2006 Nirav Shah. Some rights Reserved !

What is INDIA ?


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Patriotism had never been defined clearly in any of the dictionaries, atleast none that I am satisfied with. I don\’t know if anywhere the 10 lettered word  has been clearly explained in any encyclopedia or wikipedias, atleast none that has quenched my thoughts.  Probably because it can\’t be defined. And probably is thats the reason one remains patriotic,  just to fulfill the unsolved quest ?

 I\’ve always wondered what it means to be Indian. Am I really Indian? Does holding an Indian passport make me Indian? Is there a difference between being a citizen of India and being an Indian? These are questions that I have asked myself and I\’ve tried coming up with answers but each new series of thoughts have made me scrap my preceeding ones. With that note, why not try blogging them up just to check the complete variation in my thought process. Ofcourse its quite difficult to log every thougt and ideas effectively but who-cares ?  I\’ll be posting some random ideas on this page. I don\’t expect you to agree with everything I say, but I do expect you to respect my opinion, because the least we can do is respect the opinions of other people. You might think I\’m a fanatic, but that\’s alright. It doesn\’t really matter what other people think of me as long as I\’m sure that I\’m sure.

Well thats it for now !

 Shah / Nirav ™ 
© Copyrights 2006 Nirav Shah.  Some rights Reserved !