Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Golden Memories-Bajaj Chetak losing its hold

“BULAND BHARAT KI BULAND TASVEER—HAMARA BAJAJ” was the popular slogan of Bajaj scooters which were a roaring success all over India. These lines make me nostalgic of my childhood days I spent taking rides on my dad’s Bajaj Chetak. Undoubtedly Old is gold and those memories are cherished forever.

Chetak happens to be special for my family in a special manner. Soon after my parents were married, in 1983, the registration papers of Bajaj Chetak arrived. My mom was termed lucky for the family and so was the scooter. Dad tried teaching mom driving the scooter, but it was too bulky for her to handle. She tore her saree while learning to ride Chetak. However she never let Chetak go.

I have the fond memories of dad dropping me to school on Chetak and picking me in afternoon. When I started growing I used to go walking yet remained dependant on Chetak during rainy days, waiting for dad to pick me from the school gate.

When my younger sister was born, dad got our Bajaj Chetak painted in dark green. Every major occasion in family would have been incomplete without Hamara Bajaj. Be it picking up somebody from some place, be it doing a small errand from the local market or be it any urgency, Chetak was present in every hour of need. Like a silent spectator and a strong supporter it never failed us. My dad was rushed to the hospital on the same scooter minutes before he met a stroke. How do I thank Bajaj Chetak for its support?

Its Performance made it outstanding and we were the proud satisfied consumers.
Mussorie, Sahastradhara, Rishikesh are few places at a distance of few kilometres from my home town Dehradun. We used to go for picnics there every summer vacations and dad used to prefer riding Bajaj Chetak to these places. My dad’s best friend Ashok Uncle also owned a Bajaj Scooter and he used to join us for picnics. My sis and I used to sit with Ashok uncle on his scooter and Mom of course with Dad. Those long rides to the picnics spots were so much fun through the green valleys and natural beauty. Not even once did Bajaj break down or cause a bit of a trouble!!

Bajaj Chetak had captured a major market share in India and it became a must have for every middle class Indian. Affordable prices, powerful engine, world class mileage made Bajaj Chetak class apart. Later followed Bajaj bikes keeping in mind the new generation. Yes agreed, the young MD must have studied and envisaged a huge profitable market for bikes, however there is still a section of people who identify themselves with Bajaj scooter. It will be unfair to separate them from the identity and something close to their hearts. Production of Bajaj scooter, I suggest, should not be ceased, rather can be streamlined or decreased.

UTTERLY BUTTERLY DELICIOUS-AMUL and BULAND BHARAT KI BULAND TASVEER—HAMARA BAJAJ were short listed for Guinness book of world records for the longest running ad campaigns. But Bajaj lost it to Amul pertaining to the changes they made.

When I say Old is gold, people would say that nobody sticks to typewriters or gramophones these days. However I would like to state that these old items of the past are of an aesthetic value. These unique items with golden memories should be kept alive with the common man than in museums instead.

23 Dec,2009 my second winning blog in indyarocks blog contest

Friday, December 11, 2009

Development vs separatism- an outcry

India-We proudly say is unity in diversity-rather we used to say this with pride.Where is that pride lost now?Political issues have lashed the silent water of the nation and there is a roaring outcry for diving LOC all over the country! Be it Jharkhand,Uttaranchal now Telangana formation or the “Marathi Manus” rage over the North Indians,the situation has more or less been the same for years.Who cares about development once the political motives are fulfilled?Party rulers concentrate wealth in their hands ,make tall promises in return for votes, bask in the limelight and show an “Alice in Wonderland” story to the masses.Alice remains in wonderland forever.
Infact dividing borders across the states does nothing more than geographically reducing the state size and juggling with the rules of the old&new states. Noida for example,the closest Delhi NCR,has been facing dwindling issues over road transportation and electricity.

I belong to Dehradun,which was a part of UP,now the capital of newly formed Uttrakhand. Is Dehradun a developed town now?Ask the residents,do they feel they are better off than before?I don't think so.Common Man faces the same problems and lives the same kind of life.Then why draw lines for new states and make things difficult for the Survey of India to design new political maps frequently?

More the number of states,more the rules and hence more the number of pending cases.Coz the old cases under the old state rules will definitely not be applicable to new states..
So where is the development factor?

This was the first winning blog in indyarocks blog contest. Thanx to those who liked it!

Monday, November 30, 2009

My travel diary

My current job ,demands traveling out of Delhi often. Though I have frequented many places a number of times, there are two places which I long to visit again.

Recently I was on an official tour to Agra. Amid the busy schedule I found some time to enjoy and laze around .It became a nice holiday rather. Since I had seen Taj Mahal before, I asked my colleague to visit the massive Agra Fort. I had no idea how was it going to be, but I swear I was speechless the moment I entered it. The huge monument still stands tall with pride and sets a remarkable example of perfect ancient architecture. Be it the Deewan-e-khaas , Deewan-e- Aam , Jahangiri Mahal,Sheesh Mahal or the entry gates for the Army, I was mesmerized by the beauty of the fort comprising a blend of white marbles & red sand stones. My colleague agreed with me that ancient engineering has no equals and nobody can reproduce the magic with the same grace and perfection. Some portions of the fort are not accessible to the public, of course for security reasons .The portions which are open for all, are masterpiece of creations.

I am too fond of sweets. So I hogged Agra’s pethas. I was surprised to see a huge variety like Angoori petha, Chocolate petha, colorful petha and so on…..I had a feast with pethas and hot kachoris with finger licking “aaloo ki subzi ” 

My official tour to Amritsar happened to be my first visit to Punjab. Visiting Amritsar was a wonderful experience, even better than what I had heard and read. I wonder why is the Golden Temple not one of the Seven Wonders of the World? Left spellbound again by the lovely construction of the Gurudwara, I appreciate the efficient management which controls the crowd so well and keeps it running 24×7. The Gurudwara also called Sri Harmandir Sahib is home to the shelter less and treats all castes-religions with equal love and request. I was touched to see physically challenged people working and helping the temple management since they believe that seva to mankind is seva to God.

From Golden Temple we headed towards Wagah Border the same evening. The place was overcrowded much more than what I had expected. The sunset ceremony which takes place daily is a spectacular event which I witnessed that day. The tall BSF rangers from India proudly walked at the gate while the audience hooted and cheered enthusiastically. The black uniformed Pakistani Rangers were seen walking with the same pride and attitude. Post the 1947 partition, Wagah village, controversially lies half in Pakistan and half in India. Both the countries host colourful functions on their sides. The flags are lowered at sunset and the rangers confront each other after the gate opens. It was a wonderful sight to watch. With the loud thump of the rangers, my heart was pounding loudly. I was full of pride for the nation and for the Armed forces who have left no stone unturned to keep the country’s honour.

Not to forget the people in Punjab- cheerful, helpful and open hearted. I couldn’t digest the amount of butter I was served with each meal yet I loved the local food.(Can never forget Phirni, lassi, sweets and parantha). I felt so safe in the new place which I never felt in Delhi despite having spent 6 years here. Such was the lovely connection I made with Amritsar in mere 1 day and the memories will be cherished forever.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

26/11- Race against time

26/11- The naked truth of Valor and Shame
Hemant Karkare, Chief of Mumbai ATS, Ashok Kamte, IPS officer Additional Commissioner of Police, and Vijay Salaskar , encounter specialist & Senior Police Inspector ,are the three most remembered names of the black Wednesday ,in the History of Indian terror attacks on Mumbai 26/11/08 who laid their lives for the country . Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan and Hawaldar Gajendra Singh were the brave hearts of the NSG force who set a remarkable example posthumous for the one who serve the nation. This is an ode to the brave soldiers and their families for the sacrifices and impeccable valor.

I pray for those who lost their lives in this cruel incident and wish for the well being of their families.26/11 marked a shameful day in the milestones of the Indian History which pointed the weakness and flaws in the Indian “System”. 26/11/09 will be the first anniversary of the same day and the trials are still going on despite the clear CCTV footages and hundreds of witnesses.

A handful of terrorists (10 in number) went on a rampage killing people ruthlessly at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, the Oberoi Trident,the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower, Leopold Cafe ,Cama Hospital, the Nariman House, the Metro Cinema,St. Xavier’s College. There was an explosion at Mazagaon, in Mumbai’s port area, and in a taxi at Vile Parle. The terrorists opened fire at the CST which claimed more than 50 people and left hundreds injured. It took Maharashtra Govt. more than 10 hours to communicate & bring in the NSG forces into Mumbai. By the time the commandoes took charge, most of the damage had been done.

Taj heritage hotel was damaged to a great extend including the main building burnt and the dome damaged. CST was vandalized. One bomb explosion took place at the Oberoi Trident and six at Taj. People inside Nariman House were tortured and murdered. Most of them were NRI’s. By 27/11 rest of the places in Mumbai were under control; however people were taken hostage inside The Taj and the killing game continued till 28/11.
The terrorists seemed to know the internal map of the Taj well hence taking advantage of their geographical position. Hostages were asked to switch off their cell phones and a number of them shot dead. Smoke, gunshots, blood, bullet marks, burnt buildings and crying faces was all which could be seen and heard as the aftermath of the D –Day.
My heart goes out to those who lost their precious lives. For those who were rescued or spared alive by the terrorists, their memories are still haunted by the horrendous day. The kilns of the deceased , shed tears silently even today, thinking of the bullets which hit them or the blasts which blew them alive.
People paid a heavy price with their lives, for the flaws which the Government had overlooked. The coastal areas are now under scrutiny since the terrorists had arrived from Karachi in a boat contacting their master planners continuously.

What had happened to the interception and Coastal Security then??
When the fishermen who raised an alarm, informed the police while the gunmen arrived, the police turned a deaf ear to the suspicions. An immediate action could have saved Mumbai that day.
Was the most alert Police team sleeping?
Hemant Karkare lost his life since he was not given a bullet proof jacket. He was shot dead on the spot.
Why wasn’t he facilitated with this amenity?

When the situation was out of control and needed to be given to NSG forces, it took 10 long hours for them to arrive from Delhi to Mumbai. It was here realized that NSG hub should be set up in major cities too.
The CCTV footage clearly showed the faces of Terror. Among them Ajmal Kasb was the only one caught alive. Shamefully, even Pakistan denied his Pakistani nationality. What has been the Government been waiting for? Long after Pakistan accepted the claims of his Pakistani Origin, our Indian Government is still in the process of winding up the trials!! The Taj and Oberoi are sill under repair constructions and NSG hubs have been setup since then in other major cities including Bangalore & Kolkata. Politicians were condemned for the blame game they passed on instead of ensuring the safety and well being of the sufferers and survivors. Lives lost cannot be brought back however we can make an effort to build this country a better place to live in.

MNS chiefs- hope you understand. There are better things to cope up with than taking a so called stand for Marathi Culture. An infant doesn’t arrive with a culture tag n this world. It’s we who teach him. Our prime culture should be to speak up for the common man and not make his life misery. Its our responsibility to see weather the authorities stick to their promises or not. In action of the inability to do so, we may use the democratic power to resolve the issue.

26/11 will remain a scar in the face of India and the politicians. Lessons learnt should help in future to combat terrorism.

Nov 24,2009

Monday, February 9, 2009

Freshers stuck in recession

Amidst the gloomy situation for the whole economy where organizations are sacking their employees and filing for bankrrupcy,the Soon to pass out MBA,engineerS,graduates etc are also spending sleepless nights.
My friend Swati hu was known for her chubby and smiling face has lost that smile!we seldom see her smiling and is always worrying about her placement.

Gaurav, a bright fellow student from the IT stream says, he abruptly wakes up from his sleep with a pounding heart thinking about the bleak placement scenario.

Our placement officer has allegedly reported that there has been a 50% drop in the number of organizations approaching the institute for placements.Certainly ,the students are not left with much choice and hence, each day, almost all the students can be seen flocking to the placement cell of our college.
Anticipating the acute shortage in jobs, students don't want to lose any chance of job and they appear for all the interviews irrespective of their chosen fields.


Well, even I was in a dilemma a couple of days back when i was offered a job in an ad agency. I couldnt come at a consensus with my myself.

But i made up my mind soon and consoled myself with something which i wanna share with all -
Recent reports show that recession wont last for a very long time.So be positive and keep ur cool.Use this time gap to groom urself and acquire new skills/ knowledge to be prepared for challenges and global acceptance.Trust me, post this tuf time when organizations would start rehiring, u will have an edge over others.
Companies which are sacking employees with fat pay packages are hiring at the same time for comparitively low pay scales.Employment scenario in India is less hit in India as compared to the U.S. So guys we have a fair chance…cheer up!