Thursday, January 14, 2010

Achieving Your Childhood Dreams - Randy Pausch Last Lecture

This is among the most inspiring and moving speeches I had ever seen. Dr. Randy Pausch was an American professor of computer science and human-computer interaction and design at Carnegie Mellon University. Pausch learned that he had a terminal case of pancreatic cancer in September 2006. He gave an upbeat lecture entitled "The Last Lecture: Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams" on September 18, 2007 at Carnegie Mellon. Watch.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

3 Idiots: Sagarika Ghose on a Pathetic Media Stunt, Really Sad

First of all, let me make it clear, I am not a huge fan boy of the movie, 3 Idiots. And I really feel, the  kind of media frenzy surrounding it is pure rubbish. 3 Idiots is a commercial movie which is good. 'Satisfying, not the best', was Rajeev Masand's review of the movie and I think that pretty much sums up all of it. Those who say, 3 Idiots is the greatest movie ever is either totally dumb or haven't seen any movie other than those cheesy bollywood ones.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Ted Talks - Schools Kills Creativity, says Ken Robinson

Sir Ken Robinson makes an entertaining and profoundly moving case for creating an education system that nurtures (rather than undermines) creativity.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Should We Deny Freedom To Kashmiris If That Is What They Want?

Last day, I was browsing through some news web sites, when I stumbled upon this interesting peace of news which came in a Pakistan based news website called Dawn. According to the news, a human rights group in Indian-administered Kashmir urged authorities on Wednesday to launch a probe into 2,700 unmarked graves. Initially I thought it was some kind of propaganda and so I went on to search further about it.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Shashi Tharoor at TED Talks, Inspiring and Exhilarating

Shashi Tharoor at TEDIndia -'Why nations should pursue "soft" power'. Surely among the greatest and insightful speeches ever by an Indian Politician. Hats off to this one of his kind Diplomat.

Pakistani Nuke And Its Repercussions


On the 11th anniversary of nuclear tests by Pakistan, a popular Pakistani daily, Dawn News, ran an insightful article about its repercussions with the current Pakistani society. It was written by a well known Pakistani figure, Pervez Hoodbhoy. This article indeed is thought provoking and should be read by all peace loving humans in India as well. Here is an excerpt from the original article. Read on.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Bal Thackarey and his nephew should just stop talking

So here is it happening again. Bal Thackarey is trying to regain the past glory. Shiv Sena supremo clearly know the eventuality. Since Shiv Sena is based on nothing but hatred, there is no future for it. It's days are numbered. Thats why Shiv Sena needs to breed hatred some way or other. Thats the very essence of its existence.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Raging Water Wars

First of all let me tell you guys, the original inspiration for writing this article came from a documentary video, For The Love of Water(FLOW). Flow is a true eye opener, i never knew privatization of water is happening in our country. It is not just happening, but more and more states and adopting water privatization initiatives, which brings us the obvious question, Whose water is it anyway?

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Educational System and its Implications in Society

I never seriously thought about the educational system we have in place and it implications in our society, until i recently came to read an editorial in The Hindu. It was about the Pakistan's educational system and the things they taught their kids. Initially i thought it was about the madrasa education, but to my amazement, it was about the official educational system that the Pakistani government prescribes. Look at the excerpt below.

The one that particularly interested me was " India's evil designs aganist Pakistan". What in the world does that mean. Why can't they teach the fact that all Indians no matter what religion or caste they belonged, together fought for the Independence for a unified India or that Jinnah wanted India and Pakistan to come together at a later stage. Why cant they give "Peace" a chance.

Another interesting case is that of the USA. Different pressure groups in that country are trying hard to infuse creationism into science texts, to be taught along with evolution. Essentially what they want to teach kids is that, how earth was created by the almighty God around 6000 years ago!. Come on guys, these religious texts are at best a good code of ethics. How can these bronze age mythologies can be called as truth or as alternative to theory of evolution. (I recommend you guys a documentary film called Jesus Camp. Movie clearly depicts how easy it is to indoctrinate young minds. It was a bit scary to see those small kids absolutely convinced for what they are saying or doing).

Everything boils down to one thing, politics of hate. And these politicians and beurocrats and military dictators, will never realise the simple fact that it is much easier to do good and teach people to respect each other instead of trying to control people using tools like religion or nationalism or whatever. I had always taken our own educational system for granted. It has its own drawbacks though. But it is not that worse either.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Tribute to a Whistle Blower

"The only stable state is
the one in which all men
are equal before law."
- Aristotle

Satyendra Dubey was one of his kind. Born in a poor family in Bihar, young Dubey was the bright son every lower middle class family in India would hope for. Passed out from elite Indian Institute of technology, he was among a few others who decided to stay in his own country. Satyendra Dubey was different from most of us. He does things which most of us wont, like speaking aganist injustice or taking definitive stand aganist corruption. While most of us are frustrated about our corrupt system, what we do aganist it is mere lip service. Satyendra Dubey was not like us, he was a man of substance. And that explains why he got killed. He was simply not fit for our "civil" society.

Whistle blower is someone who is an insider, wanting to expose the rot within the system. Satyendra Dubey did just that. It all happened in 2003. Satyendra Dubey was the project director at NHAI(National highway Authority of India). He was in charge of a section of Golden Quadrilateral highway project, the then Prime Minister's very own dream project. There he found out wide spread corruption at all levels. He tried to inform it to his senior officials, but his voice fell into deaf ears. Nobody took any action at all and he also started getting threats from the construction mafia. But Dubey was fearless and he just wont bog down under any sort of pressure.

He wrote a letter to the, then prime minister of India, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, which had the details about the prevailing corruption in the project. He insisted not to disclose his name. But that was not be heard. Whether the Prime Minister's Office(PMO) did this deliberately or beacuse of the usual carelesness and lethargy, is anybody's guess. But the result was that, the whistle blower's name fell into the very hands that the whistle was blowed aganist. Satyendra Dubey was brutally murdered on Nov 27,2003. There was lot of hue and cry and even some arrests over the years. That's great job in a country like ours. Those who were convicted were petty criminals who probably did this at the behest of some political honchos or corporate hotshots. The big fish is out there and with our present state of affairs, the real criminals will always be beyond the law. So much for the largest "democracy" on earth.

What if Dubey simply decided to leave the country for a high paid job abroad? What if he was not as passionate about his country as he was? He and his family of five sisters and a brother would have been in a better state of life. Atleast he would have been alive. But he chose to be GOOD instead of being "practical". That's called greatness. And that's Satyendra Dubey for you. Tributes to this one of his kind human being.