Expectations

This blog was intended to reflect on things that affect me. I consider it a success as it has definitely helped me in catharsis. I always wanted it to be simple and straight-forward,so that my launguage doesn’t become a barrier instead of means of communication as it is supposed to be.
The biggest critic of blog is my brother,who thinks that my blogs are kiddish,he attaches no value to the feelings that I try to elicit in the readers. I want anyone reading my blog to feel uncomfortable about reality. The strangeness found in mundane is really unnerving. I want people to experience it.
I always try to use simple words to connect with people. What’s the point in using jargon to flabbergast someone who has stolen some-time from her busy schedule to read about something not at all concerning her? If a beautiful thin girl goes to collect eggs in a basket; should i say ” a svelte sylph went to get her barnyard collections in a wicker receptacle”. Why should I? If the eggs break due to her clumsiness in dealing with a naughty kid, is it apt to say”the flibbertigibbet lost the eggs to a nincompoop”?
My endeavour here is to communicate. With people, real people, people with feelings. And of course some level of vocabulary.

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Neo-educationalism

Just saw a friend’s facebook status,” RIP education”. It took me some time to realise,what the context was. He was infuriated at Smriti Irani being given the HRD ministry in Modi’s cabinet. Ajay Maken a congress MP has questioned the educational credentials of Mrs Irani,who has stated her educational qualification as upto intermediate level. It is really terrifying to acknowledge that our education system will be in the hands of someone not eligible to be even a clerk.
Some pro-modi/BJP/RSS people are once again at the vociferous best. They are asking congressi sycophants to look inside their fort first. There are other people who are comparing Smriti Irani to Rabri Devi but I consider that as a hyperbole. As far as being uneducated is concerned, the Lalu family has the top position,and this truth must be left untouched! Some of his kids may be doctors or engineers, but lets not confuse literacy with education.
Coming back to Smriti Irani, I think people should not make a great deal out of this small issue. All that she has to do as the HRD ministers is to change a few NCERTs, and anyone can do this under the able guidance of RSS.
Sorry guys this is enough of leg-pulling, I seriously believe in talent over degrees. Let me remind you all, that India’s 1st education minister Maulana Azad was home schooled. He had no college degree and no one can refute the fact that he was an intellectual and a thorough gentleman.
I personally like Smriti Irani-not since her saas bahu days. She has great oratorial skills and an impeccable memory. There are millions in India who claim that they was born intelligent but education ruined them. At least she is a freshie in this regard. Untouched by the CRASH COARSE.
Moreover,anyone who has confusions that any ministry is run solely by the minister is grossly mistaken. All the ministries have a secretariat full of IAS officers behind them. Who have plenty of on the field experience as well as degrees. Its better to keep your fingers crossed. But it was perfectly fine if you registered your protests. Its a democracy guys. Have fun with your vocal cords.

Family Life

Our society has assigned a stereotypical behavior to every relationship, parents are expected to be caring, sons and daughters to be obedient,daughters-in-law to be dutiful, and so on. In reality we see a lot of deviation from what has been prescribed and mostly we don’t mind such anomalies, for they add at least some flavor to what would have been a highly monotonous social life. I remember, the son of my first landlord in Delhi,who used to abuse his father whenever the latter smoked. The father was a TB patient and  the son cared for him; but calling him by words that have to be covered under a kilohertz beep, was quite eccentric! He remained a matter of discussion within our group for a few months.

Another guy, a distant relative of mine had once crossed all the limits. After a few years of his marriage, he developed a sudden interest in God. He would do all the religious rituals with great fervor, but lost all his steam when it came to his kids. I don’t know where he learnt about such a God who would be pleased by his prayers while he left his family starving.

Once this guy left his wife at home; please don’t ask me whats so special about it?

Because she was 6 months pregnant.

Ask me Why?

Just to spread the word of God!

I have heard that, for God, billions of years are like seconds, God certainly would not have mind a delay of three months. Nevertheless, he left on his quest to spread the Word of God.

Whilst he was busy spreading the word of God ,his wife’s condition was deteriorating. She got herself admitted to the government hospital. She did it all on her own. Due to lack of proper care during pregnancy and also in the hospital, the baby was still-born. When the lady was lying half conscious on the hospital bed,the naked dead body was on a tray, the father was missing from the scene and no relatives were present, she asked a janitor to throw the dead-body,at some place where the dogs won’t eat it. This great apathy is unexpected from a mother,but this is a true incident.

As a male I can never understand her pain,but unlike the father I would try my best to do so. 

Most of the countries don’t register still-births, India is no different. The baby with no name or number was thus born dead and not murdered due to negligence.

At times I feel it is imperative not to deviate too much from the social norms.

 

 

Dedicated to an unknown Koyla wallah

I am from Giridih which is a small town in Jharkhand. It was once known for its coal mines,that now lie abandoned. The practically possible amount that could be pulled out of the earth has already been extracted. What lies inside,are pillars of coal which are necessary for providing support to the land above. Some poor localites in the absence of any other opportunity, enter these mines risking their lives to scrap off coal from the walls and pillars, for a livelihood. Many a times they are lucky, at times they are not! The land collapses if the pillars become too thin, saving the poor from the burial expenses.
The life of such miners is full of hardships and everyone around the town knows about it. The coal that they collect from the mines is packed in sacks,loaded on a cycle and pushed for several kilometers before it reaches the city. Here they get a relatively higher price, at least a difference of a hundred rupees per quintal. Generally, thats the weight they carry on their cycles. Its common to see people helping these “koyla wallahs”,if they are pushing it uphill. I also used to do that. Its a bloody good exercise, 5 minutes are enough to exhaust you out!
Once while I was coming back from school, I saw an old “koyla wala” struggling with his load. I went closer and started pushing his cycle, he turned around and asked me not to do so. I insisted,for I really wanted to help him. He was old and frail. Stiil he refused to take my help. When I continued with my effort, he appealed to me disgustingly, ” please don’t touch this thing, its a CURSE!”
I didn’t know how to react,then,and I don’t know how to react now. Was it a kind of slavery, Where the master is unknown? However hard you try you can’t set yourself free. Why would anyone call something that provided him with livelihood throughout the life, a curse? I hope you people know why!!

Connect the Dots

Construction in Delhi, my Grandfather, a random stranger, elections, career choice

 

After finishing my masters I started preparing for Civil Services. Why? Because all throughout the years of education I used to crib about the dismal condition of our education system. I could have become a professor or could have have pursued research abroad, but I felt the problem was systemic, and it needs correction. Given a choice between drinking water and education anyone would choose the former. How can we expect the kids to learn when they don’t have the basic minimum. I had to enter into the system and work at the bottom of the pyramid; it was the final decision. Education would be the panacea for all the problems in the society.  What we have to do is to just ensure that kids go to school and learn.

With this aim in my mind I started preparing for the exam that will help me become a civil servant. As usual the doors to get into the system if not impossible, are a bit difficult to open. The exam is conducted once a year and I couldn’t clear it in first attempt. I had to change my base from Mukherjee Nagar to Munirka. This place is relatively cheaper and is closer to my younger brother’s college,who joined me this year.

The room is airy and we get sunlight too, so you can’t call it a shanty. There is only one problem,we and our neighbors share a common shaft, and if we both open or windows we can hear what the other one is talking about! I don’t know with what logic the house owner designed it, but its fun. The reason : a girls stays there. All that I could make out from the sounds that I hear, that the girl is from JNU, a premier educational institute. wow! she must be cool.

My brother thinks that her cousin visits her often, but  the moans that I bear suggest in some other direction. I hope they are not incestuous and the guy is her boyfriend! Sometimes our room smells like a hair remover but who can control every smell entering their house. Thank God she doesn’t like Beiber  or Reshammiya! In that case, I would have had problems with sounds other than moans.

I am staying in this house since last 7 months and we never interacted directly. At times  she sings in her kitchen and I sing back,sometimes she stops sometimes she doesn’t care. It was almost an ice breaker when she knocked my door yesterday, I was asleep, my brother opened the door. She wanted to make a call from my cellphone, she didn’t have any balance in hers and it was urgent. My brother gave his phone happily and I lamented myself for sleeping for so long. The bottom line , I couldn’t have a glimpse of her and I would be able to recognize her only from voice or maybe from other sounds that she makes.

Its election time,so its a discussion time in India. Whether we know or don’t know anything, we Indians are very good in discussing. Today she was discussing about the Narendra Modi government with her female friend who had arrived an hour ago. She said she wanted to Kick all the Muslims out of the nation. Oh my GOd! It was a heart break moment for me. Her statement made me revisit my ideas. I had thought that education is biggest leveler. Properly educated person would be above religion,caste or creed. But here I had an example of someone from JNU,she must be pursuing at least masters! wOw!

Where do I go now? New Zealand or Switzerland. Certainly they are better in a few aspects but I love my India more than any other place in the world. Its corrupt, at times brute but its mine! Long ago when India was divided along the communal lines,my Grandfather’s was asked to leave India. He had said, ” I would be the last Muslim to leave India”. After three generations I am saying, ” I would be the last Indian to leave India.”

EVES teasing

This evening I went for a walk, I mean there’s nothing so special about going for a walk in the evening. But, it is Thursday and tickets are cheaper in PVR Priya on Thursdays. And as usual students flock in on Thursdays to watch the recent release. Whilst I was on the way towards the Cinema Hall, evening show was over and suddenly the road was full of people. A group of five or six girls were coming from the other side,they were talking about the ‘Bua’ of Kapil Sharma and her pet dialogue “kaun hai ye aadmi?” (who is this man?) suddenly they turned towards me a shouted “ye hai wo aadmi!” (this is the man)

The girls were probably from JNU. I just want to ask them a simple question ,what happens to you people when you are in a group?  I mean everyone talks about “Eve-Teasing” and the problem that it creates in lives of girls. Those girls must be aware about it. They could have set a better example while on their way. To me they were no different than roadside loafers who pass cat calls on girls!  Shouldn’t teasing be gender neutral? Is there anything called Adam teasing? anyone heard about it? anyone!!

 

THIS IS NOT SERIOUS!! I really liked they way they leered at me….woooo

Another Uncle

He asked,”where is doctor Tyagi?” The other  doctors replied” He’s at your service  sir!”, “Down there!”. Then he asked,”Would you people like to hear a poem?” The doctors had no other option; and so…. they said Yes! I can’t recollect the whole mumble jumble but the last lines said, “Yeh dil bhi kaisa dil hai jo paththar na ho saka”(which can be somewhat translated to, Oh this heart is so unique that it couldn’t go numb!).

Believe me all this was happening in the operation theater! And that’s how my friend’s father is. He is courageous,he is fun, sometimes child-like and at other times childish!

He was under the influence of spinal anesthesia and lower half of his body was numb.He was touching it at different points and that poem was according to his analysis of the situation!

Uncle had developed some problem with his prostate.  For a better treatment, he had been referred to Delhi by the doctors of his home town. And so he came to Delhi,with catheter, a urine bag and a lot of pain. He had tried everything from homeopathy to physiotherapy,but nothing at home seemed to help. I think it even increased his problems, because massaging the prostate is fun, but its never a good idea!

He was in terrible pain,so we wanted a quick solution to his problems. He was adamant that we should seek advice only from AIIMS. On the other hand we didn’t want to get entangled in the bureaucratic treatment of that government hospital. It was difficult for us to make him realize that everyone surrounding him was concerned about his well being. He was afraid that we would commit some mistake and it would cost him dearly. ( for your info he was surrounded by the smartest kids of the nation, and I am excluding myself from this list out of sheer humility :P)

Being a professor he was incurably curious. He could ask 369 questions before you take the next breath. 369 is just a rough estimate,I could never count, I prefer breathing all the time. Many a time it felt like a viva-voce. You never knew what was coming next. Once,he asked me to convert his height from centimeters to inches.

If it looks OK to you then think it my way,he is 61 years old,and his height would have been constant since, at least last 40-45 years.Therefore according to me he either knew the answer or the question was irrelevant .

He got his weight checked twice in the hospital. First, when he was going for an MRI but stumbled upon the weighing machine. He was 68 kgs. Few hours later the nurse came and asked for his weight, and innocently he inquired if they had a weighing machine. 🙂

We went  together but this time before weighing, he asked me how full was the urine bag. He wanted me to subtract that much weight from the reading of the machine. Next, he said, “Its winters so my clothes must be weighing around 2 kilograms”,subtract that weight too! Now tell me,have you ever weighed yourself without clothe and empty bladder? Who in the world does that? Even the boxers wear boxers while weighing themselves before a fight!

He wanted to give the doctors his perfect weight by subtracting an arbitrary number as the weight of his clothes!

This may infuriate you; But my dear uncle it was Childish!

This blog will not end if start talking about his life long love for sweets and his 13 year old diabetes…… I am just signing off !!