Monday, 30 April 2012

In Search of a True Hero

One very important issue before all of us, and  our children today, is  finding a true, ideal hero endowed with much sought after character traits,  abilities and qualities. The present trend of lionizing the villain of the piece, perhaps even romanticizing him or her is perhaps the result of not being able to identify a true hero or leader today! It is perhaps the result of boredom, the desire to do something off-beat, the excitement of doing something forbidden, the thrill, that electric current, going against the flow, the current, the desire to be different, to stand out from the crowd, that makes the villain more trendy, likeable, and a desired leader for our young ones! Today we don’t have living epic heroes like perhaps Odysseus, or Jesus Christ,  Ram and Laxman,who are passé and   rather naive and boring! All we have are Robin Hoods, Dons and Buntys on whom movies and remakes will be made because they are so popular daring and adventurous! So then does it mean that today breaking of rules, going against the law, doing wrong things, sadism, cheating, killing, kidnapping are more desired qualities in the leader we want to follow, perhaps because these qualities appeal to our baser instincts, some primeval instinct which in the modern world lacks stimulation because everything is so predictable and follows a set routine?

Obviously, what we lack today is that cathartic experience which helps to vent our desire for adventure, or bottled up feelings, a safety valve which would help us going? The ancient Greek Play Wrights knew the need for Catharsis in their plays. The Ancient Romans encouraged the sport of Gladiators fighting each other to death in the arenas. Savage, no doubt, but then perhaps it did help contain the dissent, dissatisfaction and frustration of the common man with the system as a whole. The victorious gladiator would become a hero till he himself was vanquished by another more skilled gladiator! So, then, it can be said that people need a cathartic experience and they identify themselves with the person who best leads up to that cathartic experience. The normal, good heroes are not good leaders because they don’t lead up to that cathartic experience, they are stereotypes, and so called flat characters who don’t change, they are predictable, mundane and rather normal. The Anti Hero, or the villain however holds more attraction, his few acts of kindness endears him greatly, he has a rather raw, brutal kind of charisma, he is bold, and adventurous, so he is more likely to become the hero that our youth identifies itself with! There used to be this Cartoon Character called Fido Dido, a character linked to a popular soft drink, and this Cartoon Character’s popular by-line was, “Normal is Boring!” This was a by-line which most of the youth identified itself with!

So  then if today’s society idolises Jack Nicholson in Batman, or Hitler, or perhaps Idi Amin, or Mogambo,in the film Mr. India or Amjad Khan in the film Sholley, it is because they were anti-heroes, they stood for rebellion from the staid laws and rules of the society, they were somehow, “different”, hep, and not run of the mill! The role played by Amjad Khan in the film Sholley is so popular that his dialogues keep popping up in advertisements on cable T.V. and you have people imitating him in adds! Robbing banks, stealing bikes, running away from the law, all these made the movie, Dhoom 1 so successful that a sequel to the same movie was made! The enigma and mystic  of John Abraham in Dhoom 1 made him more popular character than the character of the police man trying to catch him! Movies project popular public sentiments, trends, and beliefs, so when movies present a popular story  the policeman trying to catch the villain, more often than not the audience watching the movie can be heard cheering the thief while trying to escape from the policeman. In a battle of wits between the policeman and the thief, it is the thief who is given the wittiest by lines, or refrains! So you have the popular dialogues, “Mogambo Khush Huwa” and “Kitney Aadmi The?”

Does it mean therefore, that mechanization, automation, and the use of computers has made life so dull, predictable and routine and mundane that we  need an anti-hero of the likes of Mogambo or the Joker in Batman to bring back that zest, excitement back into our otherwise dull lives? Is this desire or hunger for change in an otherwise predictable life give rise to the burgeoning of cults and sects of the likes o the Ranch Davidians and a Leader like David Koresh? Unfortunately, we don’t have the Sherwood Forest with Robin Hood ranging around with his cohorts,  we don’t even have the tongas or horse carriages and rural areas where Gabbar Singh ruled the roost! Nor do we have the shark infested tanks owned by Shakal, another villain in a Bollywood flick of a few years back! Blame it on industrialization, over population, shrinking forests, and shrinking natural resources!

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Sunday, 29 April 2012

Slice of Life-A Poem

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The clouds can be seen scudding across a deep-blue sky,
While  noisy  birds  flit   around  hopping  and chirruping!
Flowers   red,  white  and  pink nod their heads with joy,
As  a  cool  fresh  breeze  whistles  a  tune  of merriment!


Little children toss and tumble around like frisky lambs,
As nattily dressed  men and  women nod to each other,
While young  lovers laugh and  joke as they hold hands,
A heady scent of joy and merriment on the winds wafts!


The kind sun  gazes  with   warmth  at  the  scene below.
As  everyone   goes  about  their  duties  with  smiles  on
Faces,  and   a  spring   in  their  steps.  A  world  where
All  of   God’s  creation  dances  to a  joyful  tune of life!

A marriage  procession  merrily   passes down  the street!
Relatives   and   friends   of   the  groom  dance,  pirouette
And clap, in drunken revelry! And, the trumpet announces,
The   grand  entry of  a groom  on  a  majestic white steed!


The grand  temple bells  ring in a  clamorous chorus till morn,
The scent  of incense sharp wafts  through  as garlands adorn
The  deities  fair!  Children croon  and  women scream as the
Giant wheel rolls up and down, whirling in a slow, lazy speed!

The excited  babble  and  chatter  of  children  and  grown ups
Enjoying  games and food throbs through  the air! The sweet-
Meat  seller  announces  his wares  and children gather for the
Goodies along with a little stray dog wagging its tail for scraps!

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Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Save the Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary!

Today when I visited   the Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary, a few kilometres from my home in Gurgaon  after eight years I was disappointed with what I saw! Instead of a wetland with lots of birds, all I could see was barren land, and instead of a lake, there was a dry lake-bed. Instead of a large number of seasonal and migratory birds, there were just a few birds. There were a few puddles of muddy water in which a few catfish were desperately swimming in the mulch!



(Incidentally this used to be a lake-bed with water all around  with lots of birds!)

Incidentally, this little puddle of murky and muddy water was full of a species of catfish swimming around in desperation, in a pool of water which was apparently shrinking day by day! I had already seen the submersible pumps lying idle, apparently the ground water has fallen so low that the pumps used to replenish the lake have become ineffective in drawing up water!

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In spite of the rather dried up Lake-bed, however, there was a little stretch of water which seemed to be home to some birds!

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Besides some cranes, and indigenous birds, I was able to see some bucks also called as Neel Gai in Hindi.

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While the migratory birds might have left because of a lack of sufficient water, some of the indigenous species endemic to the environment seem to have retained a tenacious hold in the area like the chameleon in the snap below and the Kingfisher bird!

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On my visit to the Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary, I could see a large number of cattle grazing on the sparse grass, it seem as though they were competing for the already sparse resources in the National Park. Today, it seems that the dismal condition of the Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary is the result of competition for space between man and wildlife. The lack of water in the lake could be the result of lack of proper rains, development of housing societies resulting in the blocking of rainwater channels feeding the lake, or perhaps, the depletion of ground water reserves as a result of the large number of tube-wells, and submersible pumps being used to supply water for construction purposes. The lack of ground water would lead to a failure of the underwater pumps in pumping water to replenish the surface water of the wet land! Many years ago, I remember seeing a fairly deep lake with ample greenery and a rich flora and fauna. Today, however, it seems as if development has taken its toll. The sufferers, ultimately are the migratory birds that come from as far away as Siberia in Russia!
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I guess, unless the Government and Conservation societies take steps to conserve this National forest, the migratory birds and the exotic species that used to populate  this place will soon become things of the past!

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Gurgaon, a Paradigm of the Rural/Urban conflict

Gurgaon, the millennium city is a city of  rather complex contrasts,  with a rural culture  co-existing with an urban culture!  The other day I accompanied my brothers to the outskirts of Gurgaon and was amazed to see that there was a  confrontation between the rural and the urban  cultures. While there is a profusion of Malls and the so called posh housing societies, and the high rise multiplexes and offices of Multi-National companies and so on, there is a Gurgaon which still harvests wheat and stores dung-cakes in piles. This paradox of two cultures co-existing with each other is represented in the photographs that I have pasted below:

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In the first photograph the piles of dung-cakes in the foreground and the shell of a building in the background highlights a rather sharp contrast between the modern and the traditional! It was amazing to see the field of wheat just ready to be harvested right next to the shell of a modern building!

Development does come at a cost and it could be seen that the up-coming Dwarka Express Way would change the entire landscape and instead of broken down roads, it was hard to imagine cars zipping along!

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And I wonder what the water buffaloes in the second photograph would would be thinking about the transformation of their landscape and environment! Somehow it appeared as if the buffaloes and their herder had some how been caught in a time trap!

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I wonder what will happen to all these water bodies, lakes, ponds and wetlands! The Buffaloes will certainly have a difficult time in the future!

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With the sage looking down from his pedestal, I am sure we will see Gurgaon as one of the finest towns of Haryana maintaining a fine balance between the rural culture of the land and the urban culture of the metro! Ultimately, it seems as if Gurgaon would provide fertile ground for the Sociologist interested in studying the phenomenon called Culture Shock! This eye ball to eye ball existence of both cultrures, a western more liberated culture juxtaposed by a more ethnic and traditional culture could time to adjust to! Imagine smoking a Hookah inside an SUV with the A.C. running and the windows rolled down to let the smoke out!

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Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Dogma or Hearsay?

About five years ago, when I visited my cousin in Mumbai, he told me a rather strange story about how a girl who used to frequent the Church suddenly stopped coming to Church, and how my cousin and some of his friends decided to enquire about the matter. On making enquiries they came to know that this particular girl had been approached by some foreigners who had apparently sold her their version of Christianity and she had finally joined their sect or cult! My cousin, and the Pastor of the church where she was a member then tried to get her back, but then when they visited her, she had made up her mind! So strongly had she been indoctrinated that she would never return to the mainstream church! When they visited the so called shrine which this girl began to frequent, they noticed some very strange artefacts, namely an eagle, and something approaching the shape of a cross, but something about which my cousin would not talk about!

Now many years after my visit to Mumbai, I keep thinking about what my cousin had told me then, and I realise how everything does connect! Being a regular member of the Church in Gurgaon, I have come across various instances where regular Church Goers had stopped coming to church, and when I asked them later why they had stopped coming to church, they told me that they had joined another church. I keep observing how, so many sects, cults, and breakaway religious organisations have cropped up and they are working under no registered regulatory organisation! It is unfortunate that so many of our young ones are being lead astray by such organisations whose very existence is debatable! What are we doing to stop this exodus of young believers to organisations whose very motive is highly suspect?

The incident of the Ranch Davidians, David Koresh, the Texas Waco massacre, and so many others all around the world, forces us to do a rethink of where we stand today! While it is true mainstream Churches lack the spirit or missionary zeal, often becoming so called, “Country-Club Churches,” the so called breakaway churches have much to offer in terms of excitement, food, cash, and many other exciting inducements which will attract the newly converted! The Sunday Service includes singing, screaming, dancing,something akin to whipping up mass hysteria, so that by the end of the so called service, everyone is truly whacked out and exhausted. It is very easy to indoctrinate and brainwash the young inductee in such a surrounding. After this begins a rather twisted and convoluted interpretation of the teachings of the Bible! In a rather clever manner, the  teachings of the Bible are subverted! I guess, as a layman, no one has the right to interpret the lessons of the Bible so that he can impose it upon others! For example, many years back, when I was studying in college, some foreigners used to visit the college premises, and they would tell students that the world was soon coming to an end, and they took up examples from the Book of Revelation and talked about the image of a great statue which was made of different metals, and the feet were made of clay and how the ten toes represented ten nations of the world today which represented the G-10 nations, and how they would enter into a pact, and that the Anti-Christ had been born somewhere in the Middle-East, and so on! The date of the end of days came, and yet the world continued as usual.

Upon doing some more research into the wide-spread proliferation of Cults and Sects all around the country, I was told by a senior about an international organisation : ZG.(I am not mentioning the name) which was propounding a rather radical and different interpretation of the teaching of the Bible. On checking it out on the internet I came across the statements that it is a forum for changing the world, a forum for bringing out a change of attitude, and it mentions how a scientist of the fourteenth century was hounded by the church for his rather radical views which challenged the teachings that the Earth was the centre of the universe! I was taken aback that this organisation has chapters all over the world, including India!

Perhaps the reason for all this dilution and subverted teaching of religious scriptures is the result of excess liberalism, lack of leadership in mainstream churches, and lack of religious spirit. As I wonder about this deteriorating state of matters, my mind goes to the Coptic Monks and priests of Ethiopia who jealously guard their religious texts and relics, and it is even said that the Ark of the Covenant is in Ethiopia, but it is protected by a monk who gives his life for protecting it! The Coptic Monks in Ethiopia are a rather secretive group who might be protecting the essential character and basis of the Christian religion! I am reminded of the Monks of Mt.Athos, on the Greek Peninsula, Orthodox Christians, who like the Coptic Monks of Ethiopia are Defenders of the Faith. The rigours of being a Monk on this Peninsula mean that they are cut off from the materialism of the world, they grow their own vegetables, and their own wine the ancient way, and their lives are entirely dedicated to their cause. Their entire day is spent in prayers, and daily chores of cleaning the churches, tilling the ground for vegetables, harvesting the crop and so on! And of course, women are not allowed on this peninsula!

I guess, power corrupts, and money entices people to do wrong. The only way to defend the Faith is by having a more vibrant, active, effective, and dedicated mainstream church which is devoted also towards serving humanity at large.One should not just think about saving for the rainy day, for it is clearly written in the New Testament that the birds are not worried about what they will eat tomorrow because The Almighty provides for them. Reading the Bible regularly and reading it privately without trying to derive all sorts of distorted meanings is perhaps the best option. Of course having Faith in the Almighty is another important thing! Now this brings us to the question about the difference between Faith and Blind Faith, but then I would not like to delve deeper into this argument, although I would choose an unquestioning Faith as the better option as apposed to Blind Faith!

Disclaimer: the views expressed in this article are the personal views of the writer, and they do not in any way mean to infringe on the working of any organisation!

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Sunday, 15 April 2012

Cytheria-A poem about innocence

Each morning she greeted me with a smile,
And asked me how I was! Sometimes she told me
That I looked nice! Now that smile and those warm eyes
Remind me of how much they all loved me.

Some of those children thought I was their friend,
And they’d come and confide to me about who had
Troubled them in class, while others told me about home!
Everyone of them brought me chocolates  so grand.

My friends, all of them, buoyed my spirit so,
That I forgot all my worries to watch them play so!
If innocence lies in the eyes of playful, smiling children,
Then are they not the angels of God sent below?

Where there was one, there were many, all eager
To grab my attention, a smile, and a kind word from me, for
They all loved me so,the quiet, the mischievous, and the innocent,
All lead by Cytheria, the little one with a kind word for all!

Would the little ones think it was a dream, when they woke,
To see a kindred soul in the waking morn  gone suddenly, a lost dream to fade,
Perhaps, it was destined to be so, too good to be true, for in my place you’d expect
A disgruntled, and cross old man instead of a smiling pleasant one like me!

Don’t you know it was Cytheria and her friends,
That brought out the child in me, so that i could share their smiles,
And share the secrets of kindred souls,
About intimations  of immortality and a better life awaiting us above.

For our Master hath said, deny not the children,
To come to me, for you shall enter my Kingdom,
Only when you become innocent like children,
And Cytheria and her friends brought out the child in me!

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Saturday, 14 April 2012

The Island of Monks-A Poem

The island  of monks sits  hidden in the Aegean sea,
Wizened Monks in  immaculate robes chant prayers,
Churches and Monasteries  as old as the millennium,
Stand tall and grand, masterpieces of art and poetry!

The air of  spirituality  surrounds  and  protects  it from
Prying eyes, lest the unclean defile it with lusting eyes,
For, none  of bad spirit  might  step foot  on this island,
Lest  he might be thrown to  the swine and  lose sanity!

The  chant  of liturgies and mumbled  prayers wafts
Through  the   air, while Saints look down  from the
Walls of the Chapels and Monasteries, both kind “n”
Strict, a life of hardship and suffering made them so!

The air  around  the  island thrums with  a strong  force.
The  asceticism  and  devotion,  repentance   and   faith,
Create a force field to cure, the sick and help the fallen.
A soothing balm to tortured souls and frayed conscience!

The wizened faces of the Monks tell a story of wisdom
For those who care to hear! But be warned that of those
Who go to the island, few come back, for to be a Monk,
And live a life of renunciation  might bring forgiveness!

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Friday, 13 April 2012

A Town Called Jagadhri (Admiring Nature)

When I shifted to the town of Jagadhri, District Yamuna Nagar, little did I realise that I would be viewing my year long stay in retrospect! From the day I set foot in that town I started cataloguing my experiences rather meticulously, backing everything with photographs, videos, and other souvenirs! While going through my external hard-disk I came across numerous photographs which set me reminiscing  about the rather unique things about the town and its surroundings. When I and my colleagues were returning from a trip to Dakh-Pathar, along with our guest, Mrs. Helen Smart, the driver drove off the road to show us how the farmers extract Jaggery, a raw form of sugar from sugarcane. The golden yellow mass of cooked sugar-can juice seemed to be rather fascinating. The people started mixing the molten yellow mass of cooked sugarcane juice, and lo, it started to turn into a crystalline powdery form of sugar called shakar in Hindi! Being the shutterbug that I am, I couldn’t resist taking some snaps of the thick liquid mass that was being turned into the crude form of sugar and these amazing pictures are what I got!
Throughout my stay in the Yamnua Nagar District I observed the preponderance of greenery and a wide range of flora and fauna, the likes of which I had never seen or heard of in Delhi or Gurgaon! The favourite talk of the town was about what had been planted, whether it was paddy, or wheat, or onions or whatever! One word that I kept hearing about was the word “Jhiri”, which means rice!The poplar plantations were a common site and I was told about the  vibrancy of the Ply-Wood industry which depends on an adequate supply of Poplar.

It is a common site in Jagadhri to see tractors pulling trailers loaded with cut poplar logs and sugarcane, and often overloading of the trailers meant that it was a common site to see overturned trailers with their cargo spilled on the road often causing a bottleneck! The absence of large Malls is offset by the presence of provisional stores with all the latest goods in them, along with the popular offers on discount cards. But aside from the fact that there is no outlet for the shopaholic, there is much more to be offered to the Nature Lover or the bird-watcher, as a large number of exotic birds can be seen throughout the town and its surroundings!

Time seems to stand still in Jagadhri and Yamnuna Nagar, and everyone seems to move in slow motion which often seems rather frustrating to a person migrating from Delhi! This is perhaps because everyone in the town is free from the mad rush of the metros, and perhaps commuting distances are relatively shorter than in the NCR region of Delhi! Mornings are lazy and the evenings are lazier still. Perhaps this is what makes the sunrise and the sunset most spectacular in Jagadhri well, that is because you have all the time in the world to observe them and appreciate them!


Another rather unique thing about Jagadhri and Yamnua Nagar is  presence of a large number of colleges,and institutions which offer training in professional fields, whether it is Education, or Engineering, or M.B.A. or perhaps even Dentistry! Here I would like to thank the D.A.V. Dental college, and that wonderful dentist who did a wonderful job of extracting one of my wisdom teeth which had been giving me sleepless nights! The Yamuna Group of Institutions on the Jagadhri-Ambala road offers a large variety of courses under the same campus. I was invited by Dr. Dutta to take a look at one of the Operating Theatres of the soon to be opened College of Dental Surgery:
Well, I guess, there is more to Jagadhri and Yamnuna Nagar for the Nature lover, but then, I guess development is not far behind, and with development come Housing Projects, construction of Malls, expansion of existing roads, and of course all this will result in the cutting down of trees. The pristine greenery of Jagadhri is not there forever, but then, one should enjoy and appreciate this natural beauty till it lasts!

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Providing quality education a challenge for schools today!

It is unfortunate that today, providing good quality education in most schools including Government, Government Aided, and Private, unaided Public schools. One major problem is that there is overcrowding of class rooms as a result of which one to one interaction between students and teachers becomes very difficult! The ideal teacher student ratio of 1-35 as suggested by the R.T.E. seems to be a distant dream! The Departments of Education all over the country have never tried to  suggest  the number of students that can be admitted in each class. What is happening today is that Principals of all schools are under constant pressure from various  to take in students even where there are no seats left! Some quote the Right to Education act, while others influence top Government Officials to write a directive to the Principal to take the student. Thus, today you have overcrowded class rooms in Government, Government Aided and Public Unaided schools across the country.
Excess overcrowding of classrooms beyond the admissible limit has resulted in a serious dilution of the quality of education taking place in schools. Parents, however don’t realise that getting admission in a school with overcrowded classrooms might not be a good idea after all. Parents try to solve this problem by resorting to home tuitions and coaching. In many cases, the tutor is the class teacher. It all becomes a vicious circle where students are taught tuitions outside the school so these very teachers might not be paying much interest in the class room. Students whose parents are poor are at a disadvantage because they can’t afford costly tuitions and they don’t get much from school.
Discipline in overcrowded schools often takes a back foot during dispersal and during entry. Cramped corridors, cramped staircases, lack of proper means of exit and egress result in frayed tempers both in teachers and students. Lack of proper play-ground space, spacious courtyards, lack of auditoriums, and lack of all round space has a direct impact on the quality of education being provided to students in many of the schools in the country. Schools guarantee, “all round development of the personality” of the student, but in reality they fail to do this because of lack of space for co-curricular activities! Today, more than ever before, Education in schools has to address various life skills of students which include, public speaking, debating, creative writing, developing a sportsman spirit, developing a spirit of adventure, developing curiosity, eagerness to enquire about new developments, the desire to do research work, awareness about social issues,developing the spirit for innovation, and the boldness to explore new avenues. Quality education comes not just from textbook knowledge, but also by being able to apply what has been taught to real life situations. If quality education means educating students to cope with real life situations, then it becomes imperative for all schools to do a re-think about their objectives and how to achieve them. Education is about teaching students coping strategies, teaching them to be positive thinkers, educating students to build a repertoire of skills which will help them be better human beings, human beings with an awareness of about environment concerns, an awareness about what career options they will take after leaving school. Unfortunately education in schools today doesn’t help or guide students about the best careers for them. Mere rote-memorisation, mugging from textbooks, or taking down notes dictated by teachers or tutors doesn’t improve the quality of education in schools!
I have observed a chain of schools with branches in Delhi and Gurgaon which maintains a teacher-pupil ration of not more than 1-38, and I have observed a very close one to one interaction between the teachers and students. My daughters study in one of the branches of this school, and I have observed how teachers take pains in looking after their students. This one to one interaction is more important in the formative years of the student, especially from K.G. class to class fourth, where the child has to develop the essential skills in the three “Rs.”, namely reading, writing, and arithmetic. It is only after these basic skills are properly developed that the child can go on to develop other skills.The challenge before every Educationist or Principal of a school is to address all these issues as best as he can and develop new strategies which can make education something more than rote memorisation, and mere text book mugging! It is only after this that the quality of education can be improved. In this however, there has to be a working partnership between the Principal, the Management, the students, parents, and the society at large!

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Deception - A poem about the life of false believers

Deceit,doubt,defamation, damage and denigration,
Make great friends who  work to bring down foundations!
  Acting together they cause sadness and loss!

Deceit and doubt along with denigration,
Work to make weak men strong and strong men weak,
With feeble men they great partners make!

When men of impoverished spirit gamble for chances,
They lay down a foundation of mistrust and doubt and are sucked
into a maelstrom of confusion,  all  tossed together, good and bad!

For it takes ages to build a grand fortress,
But days to bring it down! Where men of lesser minds
Rule the roost, they make deceit and doubt friends!

In an age which is ruled by the Anti Christ,
Lesser men can do naught but be drawn helplessly into
A vortex of deceit, doubt, and damage!

While they reel off scriptures and verses on
Their finger-tips, they plot and plan the worst,
For are they the brethren of Faustus.

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Friday, 6 April 2012

A visit to Moradabad

The Day  my Cousin, Ernest asked me if I would like to accompany him to Moradabad in Western U.P., and I jumped at the offed since it had been ages since I’d been there. My maternal grandmother lived there when she was alive and my uncles still live there. Moradabad is also known as Pital Nagri, or Brass Town.
We set off at 5:30 in the morning yesterday, passed Ghaziabad and took up the Hapur By-Pass road. Close to the border of the Ghaziabad District, we noticed that a lot of buffaloes were being transported to a particular spot off the road and on a whim we decided to investigate, and were pleasantly surprised to see a Buffalo fair taking place! It was an there was an amazing thrum of activity, and I saw some of the most amazing things. The diesel engine of a three wheeler doubled as a machine for extracting Sugar-cane juice, people were gorging themselves on different varieties of biryanis, venders were selling the juice of a fruit called Bael Pathar, and my, did it taste so good!


Buffaloes being transported

                                                                                                       A village stall with knickknacks for sale



My Cousin in the midst of the melee

                                                                                                               A beautiful specimen of a Buffalo


The three wheeler doubling as a juice-extractor-think of where human ingenuity can take you!

We passed through Garh Ganga, a spot which is revered by devout Hindus and then went on to proceed to Civil Lines where my cousin had to meet some buyers. While waiting for the buyer to turn up, I decided to take some snaps of the Phillips Memorial Methodist Church a Church which my Grand Mother used to frequent every Sunday as long as her health permitted her!

I was pleasantly surprised to see that the Moradabad I was seeing was quite different from what I had seen in the year 2004! I could see a large number of Foreign banks, and the number of ATMs. has increased! I could also see a large number of Malls, show rooms, fast food joints and housing societies coming up! I guess change has finally caught up with what was once a rather sleepy, lazy town of Moradabad!

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After driving out of Moradabad we finally turned into the fast food joint at Bhajan and ordered Cheese-tomato Pizzas and then continued on our journey back to Gurgaon. Who would have thought that there would be so much change taking place in Moradabad! Well, I guess it was a wonderful trip we made after all!

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