Apr 12, 2011

Great Escape

This day, 30 mins ago: 8:40 AM
I was on my way to work when two young men were waving hands on to every passing vehicle near the road side, looking like in need of help.

My little heart suggested me that I stop, and see if I can extend some help. I pulled over.

"Sir, we're outta Petrol. The nearest petrol bunk is just 5 mins. Can you TOE our bike? Please?", he asked.

"Well, I never really have any 'toe-ing' experience before. But bring a bottle. We will buy some fuel and I drop you back", I replied with the most feasible, personally-possible solution.

"Sir, even if we fill 2 litres, it will not be enough. The tank is huge, and still we cannot drive. If you wait for 5 mins, my friend can tope and we are done."

Now, that is weird. I had a feeling that their request is not genuine and they are planning to steal my bike. He continued to talk crap, while I personally analyzed the the following reasons:
  1. Afaik, No bike on earth will take in 2 litres of fuel, and still not start due to insufficiency.
  2. Those two fellows did not look like software developers dying to write .NET code, or doctors who are impatiently waiting to treat a patient.
  3. Uncombed hair, some silver color chain on the neck that wore a blade instead of a dollar, reddish eyes which soley come when you booze-and-sleep-late-night.
  4. They did not look like people who are late to work. They looked like two intelligent, decisive robbers who are right on time for duty.
  5. Waving at vehicles for 15-20 minutes just to toe the bike for 5 mins when he can actually move it on feet in less than 10 minutes.
  6. Waiting right after the traffic signal: A place where you can easily stop vehicles.
"I am sorry boss, I am running outta time. I cannot help.", I apologized and escaped once and for all. His request may be genuine. But my prejudice about Chennai being a unsafe city initiated my evade. There are very few citizens who tend to extend help, but such people make them HEART-Less :(

A Flash back: 4 months ago:
I was about to enter office but an old lady stopped me. She told me an unpronounceable name and claimed that it was her village and she came to Chennai to see her son, only to get lost in the big city. She earnestly requested me some money so that she can go back home. Any one having something under the throat, and next to the lung that beat around 72 times a minute will definitely extend her a helping hand. Those suffered voice and old age of that lady will give little doubt to the person being approached!
I did not help her. Not because I don't have that 72-time thing inside me but the stuff inside my skull triggered another flash back.

8 months ago:
Bus stop. Techie-full Thiruvanmiyur. A pure village, once upon a time but has now become one of Chennai's most sought after residential area due to it's pleasant ambiance and it's positioning: far away from the smoke-only-prevails zone and very near to the beach.  I was about to hire an auto to go home when that old couple stopped me. They told me an unpronounceable name and claimed that it was their village and they  came to Chennai to see their son, only to get lost in the big city. They earnestly requested me some money so that they can go back home. I gave them 100 rupees!!!!!!

I don't think many oldies come from unpronounceable places looking for their son and get lost. She looked like the same old lady I met few months back. I did not believe them. Being heart-less is actually the right thing to do in Chennai.

Apr 10, 2011

Guess my song :)

I was chatting with my cousin when an idea struck me to play an interesting, "Guess-my-Song' game. It eventually turned out that we were both listening to music and chatting, so I thought it to be a nice idea. I have seen a quiz show where a Mr.Quiz Master will tell you the name of the celebrity inside your heart within 21 YES/NO questions. On a similar note, I thought it would be nice if I can ask her some questions and guess that song. In the end, it turned out to be an awesome experience as it was a popular song but difficult to narrow down to. I saved the chat history, deciding to blog about this game, so that ppl. can actually give it a try. Here goes the chat history.

Vicky: Listening to one of Harris Jayaraj's superb song...
Oviya: oh....which one?
Vicky: vaaraayooo vaaraayooo, Aadhavan....
Oviya: i just like it
Oviya: A superb song going on in mine too...
Vicky: ?
Vicky: what song?
Vicky: Huh wait, dont tell. I will try to guess. [That's when the idea came to my mind ;)]
Oviya: okiessssss
Vicky: I will ask you some questions....you just say "yes" or "no".
Oviya: okies guess nowwwwwwwww
Vicky: okay..was that movie released this year?
Oviya: no
Vicky: releasd in the last 5 yrs
Oviya: no
Vicky: okay...Suriya movie?
Oviya: clue :- sure u like it
Oviya: suriya movie = NO
Vicky: Was that a VIJAY/AJITH or RAJINI/KAMAL movie?
Oviya: NO !
Oviya: hey very interesting game man.. jolly ah irukku
Oviya: Was that a VIJAY/AJITH or RAJINI/KAMAL movie?= NO
Vicky: Karthi?? Suriya Bro movie?? or ARYA movie?
Oviya: NO
Oviya: i think if u guess the hero sure u will short out
Vicky: hmm....
Vicky: was the music scored by rahman?
Oviya: yes
Vicky: movie by maniratnam>?
Oviya: No
Vicky: madavan movie?
Oviya: NO
Oviya: i know this would be tough for u.......this hero will never come to any one's mind
Vicky: Gr8..that's how it should be...
Vicky: Tougher the game, better the fun factor..
Oviya: but still i say u like this song...
Vicky: : )
Vicky: Trisha/Asin movie?
Oviya: NO
Oviya: heroine adha vida tough...
Vicky: Abiyum naanum or mozhi movie?
Oviya: NO
Vicky: Both male and female sining is there?
Oviya: nooooooooo only male singingggg
Vicky: Dhanush movie?
Vicky: Simbu ?? Kaadhal valathen?
Oviya: illa
Oviya: no
Oviya: very tough
Vicky: has the hero acted in more than 5 movies?
Oviya: YES
Vicky: Cheran ??
Oviya: NO
Oviya: but hero if u find out..sure u can find
Vicky: Has the hero acted in any movies in the past 2 yrs???
Oviya: YES
Vicky: Kangal irandaal???
Oviya: NO NO
Vicky: yeah pls
Oviya: 2000
Vicky: Ar rahmaan thaana??
Vicky: may maadham movie??? minnalee nee vandha dhenadee song??
Vicky: Arjun hero?? Rhythm movie?
Vicky: Nadhiayeeeeeee nadhiyeeeeeeeeeeeee
Oviya: :D :)
Vicky: God..that's a tough one...: )
Oviya: WOWWW
Vicky: truly mind boggling!!!!

It was very interesting while doing that real time.. There were so many options to choose from, and you will have a hard time, locating it even if it is at the top of the box office charts. But I am sure playing this one repeatedly will lead to a bad experience as we might feel that same sort of questions are repeated again and again...But I am sure you will like it the first time...Tell me if you try it, and how it went!

Apr 8, 2011

Come on India, Let's kill corruption

He could have a banana for b'fast, milk for dinner, baby-sit with grand children, live calm and die peacefully. 72 year old - Anna Hazare choose otherwise. The fact that our nation being plagued by corrupt politicians made him realize that this is not the kind of country left behind by his idol Mahatma Gandhiji.

We all know some lakhs of crores of money were looted by our politicians. How many digits does it have? What would it mean to a common man? Here goes something that widely opens our month. We can give 1 crore rupee to every Indian under the poverty line, if all this black money can be claimed back.  Here is more. "Indians are poor but INDIA is not a poor country", says one of the Swiss bank directors. He says that "280 lakh crores" of Indian money is deposited in Swiss banks which can be used for,

  • 'taxless' budget for 30 yrs. 
  • Create 60 Crore jobs to all Indians.
  • 4 lane roads from any village to Delhi
  • Forever free power supply to more than 500 social projects
  • monthly 2000/- for every citizen for 60 yrs
  • No need of World Bank & IMF loan. 
Think how our money is blocked by rich politicians. We have full right against corrupt politicians. Why is it that no one goes to jail in our country despite indulging in corruption?, asks Mr.Hazare and answers it himself. "This is because we have completely rotten anti-corruption laws and anti-corruption agencies that it is almost impossible for the corrupt to be penalized."

Anna's IAC organization
This sensational septuagenarian, by taking the Non-Violence weapon, which Gandhiji took 60 years ago to free India from British rule, Hazare has decided to free the same country from Corrupt politician's rule, once and for all, before his last day comes. He started a fast-to-death, Gandhian style Silent protest 3 days back, and now the entire nation is behind him. How can we play or watch IPL while Anna Hazare is fasting to death?, tweeted Chetan Bhagat. Actor Aamir Khan said, "Mr. Anna deserves more support than what our cricket team does. He even went a step ahead, and wrote directly to the Prime Minister to consider Anna's demands. Captain-Cool M.S.Dhoni concurred later, with a tweet that read, "I agree with Aamir Khan: Anna Hazare deserves greater support than cricket team. Please show your support for Hazare ji."

There is something called Lokpal bill currently in effect but is not doing what an Anti-Corruption unit is expected to do. It requires permission from certain senior officials to proceed but sadly, those officials are the corrputz in question. That is why he said, we have rotten anti-corruption laws and anti-corruption agencies that it is almost impossible for the corrupt to be penalized. He highlighted the deficiencies in our present anti-corruption systems  and suggested a new solution to counter such cases.

Problems with existing system:

The present system to fight corruption in India can be described in some points as below
  1. The Anti Corruption Branch and CBI comes under the government. Despite having evidence, it is very difficult to convict people as they have to take permission from the same bosses, against whom the case has to be investigated.
  2. No corrupt officer is dismissed from the job because Central Vigilance Commission, which is supposed to dismiss corrupt officers, is only an advisory body. Whenever it advises government to dismiss any senior corrupt officer, its advice is never implemented.
  3. No action is taken against corrupt judges because permission is required from the Chief Justice of India to even register an FIR against corrupt judges
  4. The functioning of CBI and vigilance departments is secret and hence it promotes corruption.
  5. Weak and corrupt people are appointed as heads of these institutions by the government.
  6. Citizens face harassment in government offices. Sometimes they are forced to pay bribes. One can only complaint to senior officers. No action is taken on complaints because senior officers also get their cut.
  7. Nothing in law to recover ill gotten wealth. A corrupt person can come out of jail and enjoy that money.
  8. Small punishment for corruption- Punishment for corruption is minimum 6 months and maximum 7 years.

What Mr.Hazare proposed:

As you can see, in the present system, there is no deterrent for any public official to engage in an act of corruption. Some of the salient features of the Jan Lokpal Bill are -
  1. An institution called LOKPAL in the centre and LOKAYUKTA in each state will be set up. These institutions will completely independent of the governments, just like the Supreme Court and the Election Commission. No minister can influence their investigations.
  2. Investigation in any case will have to be completed in one year. Trial should be completed in next one year so that the corrupt officer, or politician goes to jail in two years max.
  3. The loss that a corrupt person caused to the government will be recovered at the time of conviction.
  4. If any work of any citizen is not done in prescribed time in any government office, Lokpal will impose financial penalty on guilty officers, which will be given as compensation to the complainant. So, you could approach Lokpal if your ration card or passport or voter card is not being made or if police is not registering your case or any other work is not being done in prescribed time. Lokpal will have to get it done in a month’s time.
  5. Election of Lokpal officials – What if government appoint corrupt and weak people as Lokpal members? That won’t be possible because its members will be selected by judges, citizens and constitutional authorities and not by politicians, through a completely transparent and participatory process.
  6. What if some officer in Lokpal becomes corrupt? The entire functioning of Lokpal/ Lokayukta will be completely transparent. Any complaint against any officer of Lokpal shall be investigated and the officer dismissed within two months.
  7. What will happen to existing anti-corruption agencies? CVC, departmental vigilance and anti-corruption branch of CBI will be merged into Lokpal. Lokpal will have complete powers and machinery to independently investigate and prosecute any officer, judge or politician.
  8. The punishment would be minimum 5 years and maximum of life imprisonment.
..You can also be a part of this movement by saying I fast with Anna Hazare against corruption.”  You can share and post about it on your mail, blog, status messages on facebook, twitter, etc. We need more and more people behind this to put pressure on the government to bring a strong anti-corruption law, and each one of us can do our bit for it. Let's support Mr.Hazare, for a better India.

“The dream of India as a strong nation will not be realised without self-reliant, self-sufficient villages, this can be achieved only through social commitment & involvement of the common man.” - Anna Hazare
Of all the 100+ blogs I wrote, only two of them were written strongly, for a change to happen in the country. One is on Agriculture, and another one on Education in India. For both of that to happen, this IAC movement should succeed. All the very best to Mr.Anna Hazare. My complete support to you sir.

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