Sunday, 21 December 2014

PRE-MARITAL SEX : MY OPINION

Everyone has a different opinion on sex. Most people, especially men, might look at it as mere sexual activity. Others, mostly women (or so they say) might define it as a bond between two people that love each other. The world over, more than 90% people admit to having had sex at least once before marriage. In many countries, marriage is not even a popular institution anymore.

In India, people still won't like to admit that they have had pre-marital sex. This is in spite of the fact that many might have actually indulged in it, or at least desired it. Hell, I can admit that I've desired if only I had an opportunity and a willing partner. 

We live in a very hypocritical society. Sex is all around us - in magazines, in the movies, television commercials, in movie soundtracks...many times even on the first pages of newspapers. Sex sells like hot cakes, whether discreetly or blatantly. Skin show is the norm everywhere. Sex is, after all, a part of human nature. But when it comes to speaking about it, most of us Indian will shy away. Of course, it's another matter when people make lifestyle choices and are firm about it - whether they choose to be sexually liberal or abstain. But many of us (including me) are bold only undercover, and extremely prude in the open.

Research shows men to have higher libido (not surprising, or is it?), while women are choosy about their sexual partners. Which means that men seek sex more easily than women do only because their bodies crave for it. In simple words, men are more likely to go for pre-marital sex, if they have the opportunity.

So is pre-marital sex good or bad? I wouldn't want to take a moral or a religious stance. In my opinion, everyone has the right to make his life's choices. But every person should also have the of the capability or the courage to bear the consequences of the choices they make. If you feel that you’re not ready for sex then that is completely fine. Likewise, if someone else wants to indulge, we can’t judge them (unless they're cheating). As long as you make your choices, be responsible, and don't hurt anyone, it's all fine. To each his own.

But I must say, sex after marriage (with your lawful spouse) might be devoid of thrill and adventure, but it sure guarantees you pleasure - both during the act and after, coz you can sleep peacefully without any guilt. :)

Buy Poonaam Uppal’s engrossing tale of finding love - A Passionaate Gospel of True Love: A Mystical True Love Story.


Cheers
CRD

Saturday, 20 December 2014

THREE GENERATIONS, TWO PHOTOGRAPHS, ONE EMOTION

That's my dad in both photographs, 'toddler' me in one, and my son in the other. Only the year has changed, but my dad's love hasn't.



Dad was a strict disciplinarian and a terror (I kid not) while I was growing up. I sometimes envy my son when my dad treats him like royalty, but this picture makes me realise he hasn't changed. I guess love is timeless after all. :)

Cheers,
CRD

Thursday, 18 December 2014

VACATIONING WITH A TODDLER

Source: www.dreamstime.com
The dictionary defines a vacation as ‘a period of time devoted to pleasure, rest, or relaxation. Sounds simple, no? Parents of one-year olds, however, will know better. Imagine planning a vacation with plans for travel, accommodation, meals and sightseeing, without factoring in activities like changing diapers, feeding, bathing and managing tantrums. Sounds a little more complicated now, nay?

Till recently, I was not too enthusiastic about a family vacation with a small boy in tow. After all, a vacation should be something that you cherish for a lifetime, and you should preserve the memories. How on earth is a one-year old kid going to appreciate a vacation anyway? A family vacation can sometimes feel like no vacation at all for parents, what with all the chasing after kids that needs to be done. A few interactions with friends, however, changed this view. ‘Why should you let your child eat into your leisure time?’ they opined, ‘…you can have fun and make it fun for him too, so what if he won’t remember?’ That made a lot of sense. I might soon plan a vacation.

There are a few things I will have to take care of though, when it comes to vacationing with a small kid. Here is what I intend to do/take care of:-
  1. Safety - Safety ought to be the number one priority when it comes to going on a vacation with a small kid. It is very easy, while having fun and letting your hair down, to let down your guard and take your eyes off your kid. Small kids are very curious, and might unintentionally step into trouble. So you always need to be alert.
  2. Make sure you factor in child care necessities into your itinerary – So whether it is nappy change time, or feeding time, or just plain tantrum addressing, please be prepared with a decent time-table that would help you beat sudden shocks and surprises, and a whole lot of frustration.
  3. Babysitting – If it is feasible, see if you can find a hotel with baby-sitting services or a crèche. It would be great to tag the babysitter along on your vacation. Although it is not such a feasible idea, you could try hiring a temporary babysitter for the trip.
  4. A little twist to have some privacy – Booking a room with an attached balcony can be a good idea to get some privacy while the kid is asleep. Just be careful about the kid’s safety in the balcony.
  5. The family that vacations together – Taking parents and in-laws along on a vacation is a wonderful idea. Firstly, the more the merrier. Secondly, family members make good and trustworthy caretakers for a child.
So, there you are. Let the kids indulge in all the fun activities, let them soak up the sun, let them have a great time. All this while being safe. They might not remember a thing, but hey, you can click photographs for them to see when they grow a little older. The important thing is you can enjoy yourselves without feeling guilty or worried about their well-being.
It’s time for me to look up a good holiday destination.

Visit http://membership.clubmahindra.com/TeddyTravelogues/index.html to Discover Travel Like Never Before.

Sunday, 14 December 2014

SOCIO-PHOBIA

Source: www.anxietywellness.org
Once upon a time, long long ago, Aristotle had said, 'Man (and woman) is a social animal. He can not live without society. If he does, he is either a beast, or God.'

Indeed, humans cannot live in solitude. They need family, friends, their social circles, a good work environment, and society at large. Without the concept of society, we humans would have been no better than wild animals, there would have been no social skills, no learnings, no knowledge sharing, no display of caring...no humanity. Man has learnt to develop relations with other men and women, not just for his own emotional, mental and physical needs, but also for sheer survival. To forge such relationships, he makes an effort to mingle with all social circles.

And yet, there are some people who absolutely avoid situations that require them to be in a crowd.

I was always a shy guy. I simply hated being amidst a group of people unless I knew at least two or three people who could keep me company. Till date, I avoid attending parties. Somehow, The fear of embarrassing myself or looking clumsy was so intense that I would try my best to excuse myself from social gatherings. The fear of not measuring up in comparison to others and of being judged, although they might seem irrational to an average person, are very real for some people, meaning that they can’t help but feel anxious.

Public speaking was something I always abhored. Fortunately for me, through school and college days, I did not encounter too many occasions where I had to speak to a crowd. To walk through hordes of humanity, stand up and face them, and then speak to them while they were all ears - that thought freaked me out. "Are they actually listening to me or are they simply waiting for me to fumble and give them some entertainment?", "Why are they staring at me? Am I a freak?"...thoughts like these flooded my head on the few occasions that I absolutely HAD to speak. It was still ok then though, since till then I managed to keep them short and sweet. But the fact that life's moments were about to get even more anxious in the future didn't dawn upon me till the time I enrolled myself for a management course.

"I'd like each of you to stand up and introduce yourselves properly. Not just your name and qualifications, a little bit about your hobbies, interests and future aspirations too.", our Institute's Director said on the very first day. To say I was stunned is an understatement. My sweaty palms and forehead made me more anxious than I already was.

I simply lost count of the number of times we were forced to speak. Debates, presentations, speeches happened on a daily basis. Although I absolutely sucked at public speaking, I think the sheer number of speaking encounters got me used to the grind. Also, since not many people ridiculed me, and many in fact tried to help me through it, I slowly gained confidence. I also discovered a few people like me and realised I was not alone. Today, although  I still have sweaty palms, I do manage to muster up some courage to speak, and I do a decent job. I can only get better.

The important thing is that my mission to combat my fear is on,and I'm at it.

Here's a Tamil video showing how Mountain Dew suggests you combat fear.



This post is written as an entry for the 'Rise above Fear' contest sponsored by Mountain Dew and Indiblogger. Check out the page https://www.facebook.com/mountaindewindia

Saturday, 29 November 2014

SPEAKING OUT FOR A CLEAN INDIA

Source: www.cleanmyindia.co.in/

"The World Suffers A Lot...Not Because Of The Violence Of Bad People, But Because Of The Silence Of Good People" - Napolean Bonaparte

The Government at the helm of affairs at the centre has changed, with the help of a massive public mandate. The mantra of 'Down With Corruption' was loud and clear, and with the power of their precious votes, the people brought in a government that they deemed was 'clean' and 'focused on development'. The Prime Minister, massively popular and gifted with commanding oratory skills, launched the Swach Bharat mission. Since then, it is a regular sight to see hordes of people, celebrities and laymen alike, going on their own 'swachhta' drives, sweeping localities clean of grime and dirt.

The mission is a welcome move. I personally know of some foreigners and NRIs who say the country looks a lot better of late. The cleanliness drive is working wonders, and this is commendable. Why the previous government's similar drive named 'Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan' did not get such support among the masses (did we Indians love our country less then, and does it take a special PM to make us love our country more?) is a different matter that can be talked about in another post. But yes, it is nice to see India getting cleaner. On the other hand though, no matter how clean our roads and localities get, can we really say India is becoming clean?

Being clean transcends beyond merely maintaining physical hygiene and looking good. Cleanliness is much more than taking out the garbage and making your surroundings spic and span. It is like purity, and being pure is being clean both physically and in spirit.

We Indians have made a good start with these cleanliness drives. But we need to introspect and clean out some really heavy garbage. We need to get rid of dirt like:-
  • Corruption
  • Crime
  • Bribery
  • Religious Intolerance
  • Casteism and Racial Discrimination (we Indians are absolutely 'dirty' in this sense)
  • Dowry
  • Female Subordination
  • Oppression of the Poor
  • Absolutely unethical business practices
  • Greed, among others
These social evils are very much a reality. They've existed since eternity. Where there are humans, there are bound to be social evils. But evil acts take place only when the evil-doer has confidence that no one will stand up to them. In other words, if you want to reduce evil, speak up against them whenever you get to know about them. Let the evil doers know that someone will stand up and object.

But we all have evil within us too, don't we? We all need to clean up our own dirt too. That doesn't mean we should stay put and resolve our own issues first. We need to be proactive. Learning comes with experience. Good comes with cleaning up evil, whether or not it is your own. Goodness and cleanliness always rub off. 

#AbMontuBolega is a campaign that talks about the Power of Voice to Clean India. This power vests in each and every one of us. Whether it is places that need cleaning, or people who deserve your attention, or persons in authority who need to pay attention to your opinions, it encompasses each and everyone out there! It's time to cease being silent spectators, and to raise your voices to make a difference.

We all have the power to bring forth a Swach Bharat. Let us use that power wisely and responsibly.

Kyuki Bin Bole Ab Nahi Chalega #AbMontuBolega.

This post has been written for a contest organised by IndiBlogger

For more information, click these links:-





Wednesday, 19 November 2014

BRINGING BACK THE LOST TOUCH

Source: http://art-educ4kids.weebly.com/

"Are you going to be late again tonight?", Neha asked nonchalantly, without taking her eyes off li'l Yash. 

"Umm...I dunno. Hopefully, I'll be home by 10.", said Aditya, still gazing into the mirror and adjusting his tie. Out of the corner of his eye, he noticed her giving him a cold look. He quickly reframed his sentence, "I'll be home latest by 10.30, I promise."

Neha wasn't really expecting a convincing reply. The man of the house had been jobless for almost a year, till three months ago. And then, one fine day, he found a job that seemed like a dream - good pay, flexible working hours, a laptop and phone, allowances, employee engagement programmes, et al. But since then, he'd been spending three-fourths of his day at work and travelling to and from work. The rest of the day was only spent on dinner, sleep and getting ready to go to work. On many occasions, he'd go to work on weekends too. His whole life now revolved around work, and she wasn't liking it at all. Of course, this schedule brought home the money and rations, and savings. But all this at what cost? One year old Yash had been down with high fever since two days, and Aditya was nowhere around. She had to manage his treatment all alone. She couldn't blame Aditya much, he was still on probation after all. Unemployment was not a luxury that they could afford again, at this point in time.

As she patted Yash to sleep, like all mothers do, she remembered the Aditya from a couple of years ago, when Yash wasn't born yet. On weekends, after having helped with household chores, Aditya would rest Neha's head on his lap and pat her to sleep, all the while holding her hand and gently rubbing her thumb. Neha smiled while thinking about how she sometimes pretended to fall asleep, simply to savour the feeling of being loved and touched. Aditya really was a loving guy.

But what had happened to him suddenly? After the kid was born, all his attention simply seemed to have turned towards Yash. He'd spend all his time around the baby, singing to it, cradling it, changing nappies...Of course, she loved Yash too, but sometimes she felt envious of him.

And then Aditya lost his job. He suddenly seemed to have gone into hibernation. He'd always stay indoors. He'd stopped meeting and speaking to friends. Most importantly, he'd lost his smile and the ability to spread joy. He stopped showing love.

Still patting Yash, Neha suddenly began to feel that she was being unjust to Aditya. The poor man had been through hell while he was unemployed. He'd wake up in the middle of the night to look for jobs on job portals. He'd look up unconventional sources of income. He tried to think of business plans. In other words, he had been trying his best to get work and support his family. Even now, that was exactly what he was doing - trying to support the family the best way he could. She fought back a tear.

"Aditya", she mustered, this time in a more loving and inviting way.

"Hmm". He was now shoving his breakfast down his throat.

"Come here baby".

Aditya was slightly amused at the word 'baby'. He hadn't heard it for months. He left his breakfast and sat himself down on the bed, next to her and Yash.

What she did next stunned him. She simply kissed him gently on the lips, and lay her head on his lap, and placed her hand in his.

The touch of her hand suddenly evoked a feeling of love within him that seemed lost since ages. As if by instinct, he began patting her to sleep, all the while gently rubbing her thumb with his fingers.

The Power of Touch is PHENOMENAL.

Sunday, 26 October 2014

LESSONS TO BE LEARNT FROM THE RAMAYANA

Dassera has come and gone and Diwali is fast approaching. In other words, Ravana has been slain, Sita has been rescued, and Lord Ram, Sita and other friends are coming back to Ayodhya. So, has the story ended and our lesson been learnt? Far from it.

The Ramayana is much more than a saga of the triumph of good over evil. It is a compendium of life lessons. It attempts to showcase the characteristics of an ideal human being – Purushottam.

What lessons do we learn from the Ramayana then? Here are some of them:-


  1. Have a set of principles, and do not compromise on them. The pursuit of materialism (Artha) and pleasures (Kama) should not be at the cost of righteousness (Dharma). Moksha can be achieved only through Dharma. This is where Ravana erred.
  2. Karma is a bitch. Even if you momentarily get hold of something through devious means, sooner or later Karma will get back at you.
  3. Beware of dubious attractions. Sita’s obsession with the golden deer, which was actually the demon Maricha in disguise, ultimately left her unprotected and paved the way for her abduction by Ravana.
  4. Vicious counseling can get you into trouble. Kaikeyi’s maid Mandara brain-washed her into demanding that Dashrath send Rama into exile so that her son Bharat could become King. Eventually, this is what led her to lose her husband, and her son’s loyalty.
  5. Arrogance kills. No matter how much you achieve in life, if you are arrogant while you’re at the top, you will fall one day, and that fall will be really bad. Ravana was a great scholar, who had the intelligence of 10 men. His devotion was so great that Lord Shiva granted him blessings, boons and great power. However, his arrogance and belief that he could get away with anything ultimately led to his downfall.
  6. Learn from your mistakes, and redeem yourself when you get the opportunity. Ravana committed a sin when he abducted Sita, but his greater sin lay in arrogantly refusing to budge when Hanuman asked him to redeem himself.
  7. Sometimes, heroes need a little help from friends to win their battles. Lord Rama had support from Lakshmana, Hanuman, the Vanar Sena, Jatayu, and many others. Without these friends, there might have been no Dassera and no Diwali.
  8. Always play by the rules. Lord Rama fought his war against Ravana without any deceit. He played by the rules, and in the process won the respect of not just his friends, but also of his enemies. In fact, when Ravana was breathing his last, he stated that he was privileged to meet a man like Rama while he was still alive.
  9. Failure to trust your loved ones can make you lose them. The Ramayana did not really have a happy ending for Lord Rama. Lack of trust made him put Sita through a loyalty test, out of which she emerged unscathed, but he lost her forever in the bargain.
  10. No one is infallible. Let’s make no mistake. The villain of Ramayana is not Ravana. In fact, Ravana was a very learned man, and was known as a just ruler in Lanka. His tapasya towards Lord Shiva earned him great power. The real villain in the Ramayana was Ravana’s refusal to accept his mistake and his arrogance. He let his power get to his head and ultimately this led to his downfall. On the other hand, Lord Rama let society’s skepticism towards Sita’s loyalty shake his own trust, and he had to lose his devoted wife. The bottom line is that everyone is capable of making a mistake, and this is a fact we should all be aware of. 
Just like happiness is a journey and not a destination, Dassera and Diwali are not events marking the happy ending of a beautiful story. The cycle of life goes on. Evil will don a new face and rise again and again. Likewise, goodness must keep rising to triumph over evil. Burning Ravana’s effigy during Dassera is only a symbolic gesture depicting the triumph of good over evil, but the fact is that evil never dies, and good forces should always be on their toes to rise to the occasion. The war is still on, it was never over in the first place.

Here’s wishing all of you many happy Dasseras and Diwalis.

Cheers
CRD

Monday, 13 October 2014

WASSUP? WORDUP MUMBAI!

INDIBLOGGER organised their biggest and perhaps their most resourceful/educational blogger meet on September 20, 2014. Organised in collaboration with BIGROCK, and (as the name of the event suggests) promoting Wordpress, the meet was slated to be a big event. The tag line LISTEN-LEARN-EXPRESS was absolutely apt for a bloggers meet, coz that's what bloggers do! 

The all-day meet, which was exclusively for invited blogger attendees (makes me feel like a VIP), was held at the Blue Frog, Lower Parel. Although it was initially supposed to start at around 11, the IndiBlogger changed plans and decided to begin earlier, at 9 am, probably because of the long list of speakers. They did well to personally call up the invitees and inform them about the change in plans. I tried my best to show up on time, but those who are parents to toddlers will understand how easily your plans can go kaput sometimes. Since I had never been to the Blue Frog before, it took me some time to find the place. The event was to begin with a live Rock music performance by the IndiBlogger team, and it's a shame that I missed it.


On reaching the venue, I was welcomed with a nice-looking backpack, in which the IndiBlogger-BigRock team had packed in a flier with the agenda for the day, a BIGROCK flier informing us about free wordpress hosting and a .ME domain that they were offering to all attendees (along with a code to enable the same) and a music speaker. I must point out that the speaker is unique and awesome (in that it can amplify music being played on your phone by merely placing the phone on top of the sensor), and I use it everyday. The free wordpress hosting offer and .me domain are also impressive. However, I wish they had packed in a pen and a notepad as well, since some of the attendees were really keen on taking down notes and tips being shared by the speakers.

Also part of the welcome kit was a nice-looking badge that bore my name and my blog URL. What took me by surprise though (shock is more apt, actually) is the word BLOGGERATTI written at the bottom of the badge, since that happens to be the name of a 7-year old blogging community that I own, previously on Orkut and now on Facebook.

By the time I had reached, Vinit Goenka, co-convenor of the BJP's IT cell was half-way through his key note address. He shared with us the fact that the BJP's victory in the general elections had a big contribution (apart from the Congress' failures) from social media marketing. I can vouch for that - the number of anti-Congress and pro-Modi Whatsapp and FB viral shares before the elections was overwhelming (and irritating after a point too). Thankfully, he did not get too political, and shared tips on care to be taken before posting anything on the net.

Next up, Amit Agarwal, a famous tech-blogger, columnist, and the chief curator of the IndiBloggers.org directory shared his tips on how to blog, dos and donts in blogging, how to declutter your blog, and the benefits of having a wordpress.org based blog. The plethora of blogging tools and apps that he shared with the listeners was really useful. I began missing a pen and notepad at this point. Thankfully my blogpal Swati had a pen; alas, the agenda flier had only 1 blank side. What he said still rings a bell - 'No matter how elaborate your blog looks and feels, at the end of the day content is king.'



Anshul Tiwari from YouthKiAwaaz.com was next in line, to talk about blog promotion. He shared with us his personal tryst and struggles with keeping his passion for blogging alive - his story of making it big in spite of lack of support from family touched many a heart. He shared with us his website's journey from a humble struggling-for-survival news blog to a popular mouthpiece for the youth, all because of relentless promotion activities. The stories he told must have surely been sources of inspiration for many who want to dream big - irrespective of whether they are bloggers or not. He too dwelt on the importance of content.



Next up was web-designer Sunit Singh of ClearTrip fame. The soft-spoken graduate from the JJ School of Art, and an IIT-Mumbai alumnus has previously worked with Burrp and Yahoo. He was interviewed by video blogger, filmmaker and anchor Lakshmi Rebecca. Lakshmi's story is inspirational by itself - in spite of the fact that video blogging and filmmaking is an expensive hobby, she pursued it with passion, went through years of losses and financial strain, and today manages to make films that garner millions of views. She is well-known for her online talk show 'Chai with Lakshmi' and a series on Youtube known as 'India Ahead.' 



Varun Krishnan, editor-in-chief of FoneArena was next on the agenda, to speak on blog monetization. He spoke about how he started a small website offering information on phones while he was still studying, simply because he wanted to offer a useful resource to peers, and how he eventually saw a business opportunity, and made it a reality. He made it known that if your website has useful content, and therefore a lot of traffic, there is a huge opportunity in terms of sponsors and ad revenue.

C.S.Krishna of 'The Unreal Times' (URT) fame came up next to talk about the legal angle surrounding information that is posted on the net. He talked about how URT was born out of sheer journalistic boredom and how it continued due to positive response. He told us about the popularity of the satire genre, and how things go viral. He also revealed that satire can sometimes be a risky business, what with the sword called the IT Act hanging over our heads and the threat of defamation cases always lurking. He claimed that he had been lucky not to have too many problems, mostly because most of the people he had targeted were good sports. He also said that these weren't 'achhe din' for URT, now that the Modi Government is in power and hasn't given them any fodder. Raised eyebrows, anyone? ;)

Post-lunch, Harsh Agarwal, a passionate blogger who manages ShoutMeLoud.com spoe about SEO services. The topic was too technical for a tech-dummy like yours faithfully, so I'll conveniently excuse myself on dwelling too much on this session.

Self-made fashion blogger, model and actor Scherezade Shroff was up next, talking about her fashion blog. As was prophetically declared by fellow-blogger BlogWati, I honestly don't remember too much of what she said. Blame it on the glowing bright face in the dark ambience (read jaw-dropping looks). On a serious note, what struck me most about her talk was her policy of not writing excellent reviews about a product simply because she had gotten a sponsorship, and not writing about a product that you haven't used at all. She dwelt on the important of loyalty and honesty towards your readers and followers, and that definitely struck a chord. Back to a less serious note, many of us were shaken out of our post-lunch sleepy stupor. 



Snigdha Manchanda was next, talking about story writing and creative writing. From the moment she started speaking, it sounded like she was narrating a story. Her choice of words, her tone, her sentence framing, the pauses she took - everyone was all ears for her. Her voice - and everyone will agree with me here - was such that even if she had to go up on stage and simply recite a nursery rhyme, no one would have complained. Another interesting thing about her and her blogs is that she is fascinated with tea and various kinds of tea. She showed us an interesting thing about most stories, in that they have a predictable structure. She showed us how to construct a perfect story. Since I love writing short stories, this was perhaps my most favourite topic of the day.



A stand-up comedian, Bhavish Ailani, cracked us up with his punch lines and jokes. Although he has a long way to go, this was probably a good platform to groom his talent and get better.

Managing Director and founder of IndiBlogger, Renie Ravin spoke about the the community and the blogging philosophy on which it firmly stands. It was nice to see him face to face. Maybe if I was a little less of a reserved fellow, I might have liked to go an interact with him personally. For now, maybe I'll just go check his blog.

The event ended with a head-banging session, to the tune of Avenged Sevenfold's 'This Means War'. Sounded a bit like Metallica at first, but glad I got the words. Its now in my playlist.

On our way out, we were given T-Shirts as souvenirs. Strongly aware of my girth's prowess and reach, I asked for a XXL t-shirt. I realised it was tight only when I reached home.

MUST . LOSE . LARD

I hope IndiBlogger gets us more involved in the designing of T-Shirts in the future, or at least invites contributions in terms of inputs or ideas. Many of us would be glad to contribute creatively. It would also be a nice idea to see your members getting involved in the organising of the event, at least in certain areas.

A good event, with good topics, and good speakers.

Hopefully will be even better next time.

Eagerly waiting for the next one.

Images courtesy: IndiBlogger 

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE FENCE

In today’s day and age, everyone claims to be cosmopolitan and global citizens. India’s Generation-Next isn’t any different. We somehow manage to gel in wherever we set foot. Things, however, are a little different when it comes to our sister nation, Pakistan. It is considered taboo and outright ridiculous to say that we should have good relations with our neighbours.

We seem to know a lot about various parts of the world. How much do we know about our next-door neighbour though? Let’s find out.

Languages spoken in Pakistan

Although Urdu (and English) is the official language in Pakistan, close to half the population speaks Punjabi. Other dominant languages are Pashto, Sindhi and Balochi.

Brace yourselves for the other minor languages spoken in Pakistan - Gujarati, Kutchi, Marwari, Bengali, and even Brij-bhasha.

Religions

More than 90% of Pakistanis are Muslims, of which 90% are Sunnis. Pakistan also has about 3.5 million Hindus and 3 million Christians. Pakistan is also home to about 20,000 Sikhs and 15,000 Parsis.

Some interesting facts about Pakistan’s leaders

1) India and Pakistan were divided on religious lines. However, did you know that the Father of Pakistan – Mohammed Ali Jinnah – was not a practicing Muslim? A liberal at heart, he loved his alcohol. He even had a taste for pork, which in Islam is considered haram (unclean).


Jinnah loved Mumbai. Jinnah house still exists in the city.

If Jinnah had to have his way, Pakistan would have been a secular country. He wanted the constitution to show Pakistan as a secular democracy where everyone would have the right to profess their own faith.

Today, Pakistan is an Islamic state. However, it has not fully adopted the Shariah law. It has a judicial system that is only based on the Shariah.

Coming back to Jinnah, while he was still in India, he had married a Parsi lady. Jinnah’s daughter Dina had differences with him over marrying a Parsi man and ended up severing all ties. Jinnah’s descendants through his daughter Dina continue to live in India. “Who”, you ask? The Wadia family of ‘Bombay Dyeing’ fame.

2) The song ‘Saare Jahaan Se Acha’ arouses patriotic fervor in every Indian heart. But do you know who wrote it?

Poet and philosopher Mohammed ‘Allama’ Iqbal did. Ironically, he is credited as one of the founding fathers of Pakistan.


Born to Kashmiri Pandits (Brahmins of the Sapru clan) who converted to Islam before he was born, Iqbal was originally a member of the Indian National Congress. Eventually, he quit the party when he began to feel that Muslims were not getting enough representation. He went on to join the Muslim League, and was in the forefront when it came to the idea of having a separate state for Muslims, post independence.

He never lived to see independence though. He died in 1938. It is said that towards the end, he had become disillusioned with the idea of Pakistan.

3) The Pakistani army is considered to be one of the most secular and progressive organizations in Pakistan. The General Zia-ul-Haq regime in the 80s, however, was anything but liberal. In his zeal to stay in power and earn the loyalty of conservatives, General Zia began a process of rapid Islamization of Pakistan. In the process, he not only banned alcohol, but also placed restrictions on music, films, and other forms of entertainment. This was a bad time for artistes in general. If music in Pakistan survived, it is only because of the underground music scene that thrived during that period.


Post-partition cross-overs

Partition was not the only time when people from either side of the border crossed over to the other side of the fence. Thousands of people have (and still are) crossing borders, for a wide array of reasons, including persecution, to re-unite with family, marriage, etc.

Some of the notable crossovers are:-

1) A. K Hangal – Did you know that actor A. K. Hangal was in Pakistan till 1949? An active participant in the Indian freedom struggle, he was lodged in prison in Karachi for three years for being a member of the Communist Party. After moving to Mumbai, he got involved in a theatre group named IPTA, along with legends Balraj Sahni and Kaifi Azmi (who also had Marxist leanings).


2) Asif Iqbal – Born and brought up in Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh), he migrated to Pakistan in 1961, apparently due to prejudice and lack of opportunities in India. A technically superb batsman and a useful medium pace bowler, he went on to captain the Pakistan cricket team in the late 70s and 80s. Legend has it that when Mohd. Azharuddin was initially finding it difficult to break into the Indian team in the 1980s, Sunil Gavaskar turned the tide in his favour with this statement to the selectors - ‘We do not want another Asif Iqbal’.


3) Moin Akhtar – Famous comedian/TV anchor Moin Akhtar’s parents migrated from Bombay to Karachi in 1950. A great mimic, he was fluent in English, Bengali, Sindhi, Punjabi, Pashto, Gujarati and Urdu. He could also do a great Lakhnavi, South Indian, Bhojpuri and Hyderabadi accent. What stood out about him was that his jokes were all very clean. India would have had a great legend to flaunt if only his parents hadn’t migrated.


4) Alyy Khan - Super talented actor Alyy Khan was born in Karachi. He migrated with his family to Mumbai when he was 9 years old, and that's where he groomed himself to become an actor. Eventually, he fell in love with a Pakistani origin girl, and he had to move out of India just to be able to live with her and the kids. As of today, he shuttles between Dubai, Belfast, and Karachi, where his wife lives. He still considers Aamchi Mumbai his home though.


Some of the best Indo-Pak collaborations

1) Josh – The popular band, consisting of Rupinder Singh Magon aka ‘Rup’ and Qurram Hussain aka ‘Q’ is very popular, not just in the two nations, but worldwide.


2) Biddu and Nazia Hassan/Zoheb Hassan – Nazia and Zohaib were pop music sensations in the London desi music circuit and in Pakistan. Indian-born music composer Biddu met the London-raised brother-sister group at a party in London, and the rest is history. Biddu and Nazia in particular, came up with disco hits like ‘Aap Jaisa Koi’, ‘Boom Boom’, ‘Disco Deewane’, and many others.


3) Rohan Bopanna and Aisam ul-haq Qureshi – During their 4-year association (2007-2011), the tennis pair won just one ATP title. They, however, reached the quarter-final and beyond stages quite a few times. They broke into the world top-10 rankings a couple of times.



Minority report

Most Pakistanis from minority communities have found it tough to make it to the mainstream. The Blasphemy Law is often abused to persecute them. Consequently, a lot of people from minority communities have migrated to other countries – UK, USA, Australia, recently thousands of Hindus had fled to India. Nevertheless, there are a few who have earned their fame. For some it was a struggle, others were lucky to find themselves amidst liberal and progressive surroundings. Some of them are mentioned below:-

Rana Bhagwandas - First Hindu Chief Justice of Pakistan. Interestingly, he was not the first non-Muslim to occupy that post. Others like A.R. Cornelius and Dorab Patel had held the post in the past.

Bohemia (real name Roger David) - Punjabi rap artist and music producer.

Anil Dalpat - Pakistani cricketer during the late 80s. He played as a wicketkeeper.

Danesh Kaneria - Legspinner. Incidentally, a cousin of Anil Dalpat.

Jamshed Mehta - First Mayor of Karachi

J. M. Mandal - Pakistan's first law minister. Eventually migrated to India, but was reduced to insignificance.

Behram Dinshaw - Sportsman (boating)

Dr. Dennis Isaac - Writer

Deepak Perwani - A very popular fashion designer, well known even internationally.

Sunita Marshall - Supermodel

Louis 'Gumby' Pinto - Musician, plays as a drummer for the band 'Noori'

Salman Albert – Another famous drummer

Wallis Mathias - First Christian cricketer to play for Pakistan.

Antao D'Souza - Test cricketer during the 60s.

Sohail Fazal - Cricketer

Zoe and Rachel Viccaji - The Viccaji sisters are singers and theatre personalities

Robin Ghosh - Famous actor

and many others.

Pakistani Goans!

Did you know that Pakistan, particularly the port city of Karachi, has a sizeable number of people of Goan origin. Thousands of Goans had migrated to the port city of Karachi way back in 1820, for better prospects. Many others were sailors, who happened to be at the Karachi port (with their families) in August 1947 and decided to stay back. Their descendants call themselves 'Karachi Goankars', speak Konkani, have their own version of an annual Goa Day celebration and a carnival too. By the way, they also love their feni. So don't be surprised if you find a Pakistani Gonsalves or D'Mello or Pinto.



Friends of India

It's not hard to find anti-India propoganda in Pakistan. It's all over and sometimes deep-rooted. News channels regularly talk about how India keeps 'threatening' Pakistan. Some so-called 'thinkers' come up with bizarre conspiracy theories about India and her 'motivations' (look up Zaid Hamid). India has her own share of crazies and ultra-jingoists who keep spewing venom about Pakistan.

But not everyone is cynical. There are a few intellectuals in Pakistan who vouch for good relations with India, and heavily criticize India-haters. They vehemently defend India on television debates. When Hassan Nisar, for example, speaks, his pro-India stance makes it hard to believe that he's a Pakistani. Other pro-Indian intellectuals include Najam Sethi, Ansar Burney, Wajahat Khan, and others.


Conclusion

It might sound clichéd, but we need to maintain relations with Pakistan. We are fortunate that Pakistan is not an all-out military state or a nation ruled by outright fundamentalists. Pakistan is the biggest victim of terrorism in the world. It is the best interests of India and the whole of South East Asia that Pakistan remains a democracy. Politics of hatred will only give leverage to radicals, and can ruin whatever sense of peace and stability we have managed to hold onto at the moment. Although we have many differences, regular engagement is the only way to keep things moving. Also, remember that the ordinary people on both sides actually have no interest in conflict. Many actually want to interact with the other side.

If you don’t agree, maybe you should watch this video:-



Cheers

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

TEN THINGS WE LEARNT FROM FIFA WORLD CUP 2014

We Indians love our Cricket. The idea of two stick wielding gentlemen hitting a ball to all parts of the ground with eleven other men running behind it thrills us. Some of us will religiously follow every cricket match, even the insignificant ones. It’s a wonder why Hockey is our national sport then, it clearly isn’t anymore. Yet, once every four years, when the FIFA World Cup comes calling, we all want to be known as the greatest football expert ever.

Some of us though, find it hard to make meaningful conversation when the talk revolves around football. All we can do is stare into oblivion, or maybe make do with a smile and a generous dosage of affirmative nods.
So if you’re one of those who tried oh-so-hard to keep up with the football frenzy, and yet learnt nothing from the experience, here are some things you can CLAIM to have learnt about football after the FIFA World Cup 2014:-

  1. The World Cup is truly a WORLD event – With more than 200 countries playing football, the FIFA World Cup truly is a world event. So what if 35% of the world’s population (read: China and India) don’t get to play at the finals? Our claim to fame are the Olympics (China) and the Cricket World Cup (India, nevermind that England and her former colonies are the only ones who play the sport)
  2. Well ‘rounded’ tournament – The FIFA World Cup has many stages – the Group stage (eight groups with four teams each), the round of 16 (pre-quarter finals), the quarter-finals, semi-finals and the final. How many teams do we have at the Cricket World Cup?
  3. Footballers take inspiration from other sports – Apart from a few slightly complicated rules, (the offside rule for example) football is a simple sport that involves kicking a ball into your opponents’ goal post. Hence, footballers consider it their duty to make the sport more appealing, by including aspects of other sports. Diving, for example (Robben, Cristiano Ronaldo, Welbeck), is an art that very few can perfect. Wrestling is another sport that is increasingly gaining popularity among footballers. Honduras took the term ‘fighting for a win’ too seriously. Too bad Portugal crashed out at the group stages, we hardly got to see Pepe in action.
  4. What goes up will come down, and how – Spain was the perfect example of a meteoric rise followed by an abrupt thud. The defending champions were the first team to crash out of the World Cup. And it wasn’t pretty.
  5. Global Team – Switzerland was the perfect example of a global team, with immigrants constituting almost 80% of the squad. Not surprisingly, USA came a close second in this aspect.
  6. If you can’t beat em, bite em – Uruguay’s Luis Suarez showed us that he was good not just with his feet, but also with his teeth. In doing so, the ex-Liverpool forward he made us realise that not all the knowledge we received at school was accurate. The food chain, for instance, should have actually looked like this.
  7. Non-football attraction – Some teams made more news for their female fans than for their football - Mexico, Ecuador, Belgium, Algeria and South Korea to mention a few. Turkey, Sweden and the Czech Republic were missed.
  8. No cup for one-man teams – Brazil’s show at the World Cup proved that football is a ‘team’ game. With Neymar having to leave the tournament mid-way with a back injury, Brazil suddenly lost their magic. Although they reached the semi-final, their journey was hardly convincing. Their last two matches showed their vulnerability. Messi managed to take Argentina to the final, but the writing was already on the wall. Germany, the real ‘team’, were deserving champions. Building a team around one player is not a good idea after all.
  9. How to celebrate goals – Columbia showed the world how to celebrate goals. Every goal had a unique dance move to go with it.
  10. Managers can be fun to watch too – Those who watched Mexican coach Miguel Herrera in action will vouch for this. This guy was all over the place during Mexico’s games.
Images courtesy: www.wpmedia.o.canada.com, www.express.co.uk, www.epa.gov, www.ibtimes.co.uk

Saturday, 5 July 2014

SUPERPHONE - THE INCREDIBLE ZENFONE 5

I was just about to volley the ball past the Brazilian goalkeeper when I was shaken out of my dream by the sound of my new phone ringing. It was Sahil calling. I took the call and was greeted by a really shrill "You awake?".

"Whatever happened to good morning man?", I said, stifling a yawn and failing miserably.

"It's 6 am dude! Are you ready?" His voice suggested he was frantic rather than excited. The voice was loud and crystal clear. "We've got to leave in half an hour".

"Gimme about fifteen minutes", I said half-heartedly and disconnected the call. But I stuck to my word and was in front of his gate in fifteen minutes flat.

"That awas quick! Sheesh! Didn't you have a bath?"

"Took just 2 minutes", I shrugged, matter-of-factly, "I'm clean".

"Where's your camera?", he asked, yanking out his own gadget, just to show off I assumed.

"Nah. Won't be needing that".

"You kiddin me? We're going on a nature trail for heaven's sakes!" Sahil was visibly annoyed.

"I know", I retorted. "I have all I need right here in my pocket". Saying that I pulled out my brand new phone and flashed it right in his face.

"A phone?", he sniggered, following it up with a loud burst of laughter. "Some lazy buffoon you are. I'm the one who's gonna end up with all the best pictures today".

"We'll see", I said, my confidence not wavering a bit.

"New phone huh? Lemme see."

I placed it in his hand.

"What is this? Some kinda rock?"

I smiled. "You can say that".

"How much did you get it for? Twenty grand?"

"Less than that my friend."

"Then, my friend, you have a really cheap phone, and you can't expect a cheap phone to do much except save you some money."

"You're sadly mistaken Sahil. This, my friend, is a smartphone with super powers. It's my brand new ASUS ZENFONE 5. And it's a SUPERPHONE."



"Oh, I see", he replied nonchalantly. "And what are its features?"

"You'll know, in time."

We reached the spot where the forest began, in just under a hour. The weather was cloudy, but we were hoping it wouldn't rain, just for the sake of our gadgets. Sahil pulled out his 16 megapixel digicam and clicked a selfie of both of us together. The picture was good, but the screen was just about 4.5 inches long. I knew that what his camera could do well, my Zenfone 5 could do better. So I pulled out my phone and took a selfie in the same pose. The picture was better, with natural colours, in spite of the camera being only an 8 megapixel one. Plus, the screen being bigger at 5 inches, we could see the image better. The results shocked Sahil.

"PixelMaster technology", I answered him before he could pose a question. "The rear camera is loaded with 8 megapixel resolution, a Sony BSI sensor, a 5-element lens, and largan optics. The focus gets locked in no time. It can even take shots with shallow depth field. It also has software-based image stabilisation, by the way, which makes all pictures I click with this phone virtually blur-free."

"You just got a lucky click", he dismissed my explanation. I only smiled.

We walked ahead, slowly getting deeper into the forest. We were having a great time, putting our clicking skills to the test and indulging in healthy competition. Somewhere along the way though, where the tree cover was thicker, we encountered bad light.

"What happened? Not gonna put your Superphone to the test? Too dark eh?", he chided me.

"Why not?", I said, whipping out my phone and getting a dozen pictures clicked. The results were outstanding, and Sahil was left astounded.

"The low-light mode works really well dude. Does it work in absolute darkness as well?", Sahil was curious to know.

"Sure does. Even in absolute darkness, you'll get a fairly bright picture."

"What other modes does it have?"

Sensing that I was soon getting a non-believer on board, I went in for the kill, "It has a beautification mode, Panorama mode, an HDR mode, a time rewind mode, a smart remove mode, a smile detection mode, and my favourite, a GIF animator."

"A gif animator too?", he was excited, "that's so cool."

I nodded.

"Tell me more", he demanded.

"Well, it works on an Intel Z2560 Atom chipset, 1.6 GHz dual-core, and 2 GB RAM. The Atom chipset helps it run more than 10 applications at a time, smoothly. All this, without the phone heating up."

"Amazing."

Our trip was pretty long. After 5-6 hours in the forest, we headed back homewards in our jeep. We had many stopovers, sometimes for food, for tea, and also for pictures. By But along the way, Sahil's camera conked off, having run out of battery. My phone, however, was up and running.

"The battery is amazing too?", his jaw dropped.

"Yup, With a 2,110 mAh battery, you can keep the phone running for practically the whole day."

"Dude, this sure is a masterpiece." He was already floored.

"Nope", I interrupted him. "It's a SUPERPHONE".

To learn more about the ASUS ZENFONE 5, visit this link ==> ASUS ZENFONE 5

Saturday, 28 June 2014

GALAT PICCHAR - SHOLAY

Today, I present to you the first post in a brand new series. It is aptly titled 'GALAT PICCHAR'. 'Galat' in Hindi means 'Wrong' and 'Picchar' is the Desi word for 'Picture' or a movie. So no prizes for guessing what 'Galat Picchar' means. Believe what you read here at your own risk.

Most Desis are film buffs. We know our 'Hum Aapke Hain Kauns' and 'RaOnes' 'DDLJs' by heart. But with almost half the population being born in the 90s, it would be a tad unfair for to expect everyone to have watched or even have heard about movies of the 70s, even if they were classics. Hence, it becomes a duty on the part of us veterans pre-1990ers to bring these wonderful movies to the poor novices. Today, I proudly give you the most accurate synopsis of the evergreen classic...*drumroll*...SHOLAY.

The movie actually shuttles between real time and flashback sequences. Because I'm too lazy to type For simplicity in narration, I will present the story to you in proper chronological order. For easy comprehension, I am also attaching images, wherever necessary.

Most fans of the movie will argue that Sholay is an action-packed tale of unconditional friendship, loyalty and the ultimate revenge saga. However, it is also the story of a power-struggle between a 'connoisseur of art' dacoit and a village Thakur with a strange obsession with male hands.

The actual story begins with the Thakur (who by the way also happens to be a former cop) hunting down a hairy Daaku - Gabbar Singh. At the very beginning of the sordid tale, we are greeted by the sight of the wicked Thakur harassing strangulating Gabbar.


To add insult to injury, Thakur gets Gabbar imprisoned and sentenced for unlawful assembly and for promoting obscenity (read: enjoying ganda naach gaana with his merry men). What's more, Thakur chose to put only Gabbar behind bars, and not his 'unlawful assembly' or the vulgar dance troupe. Some personal vendetta!

Anyway, before he is led to prison, Gabbar vows revenge against Thakur for his 'Misbehaviour', 'Suppression of Art & Creativity' and 'Moral Policing'. In other words, he vows revenge on Thakur's 'Dhoblegiri'.


Soon enough, Gabbar escapes from jail. He blocks Thakur's newly-acquired android phone using the IMEI number.

His ego badly hurt, Thakur sets out to put Gabbar in his place. He pays no heed to Ramlal's prophetic words. Ouch! That was soon gonna cost both of them dearly.


Ramlal should have been a little more aggressive with his convincing. It was in his own best interests after all. Alas, very soon he was going to have to face the consequences of his lethargy...for the rest of his life.

Meanwhile, Thakur acts like a dhedh-shaana, and confronts Gabbar, in his own lair. He also falsely claims that Gabbar has stolen his handsfree device. Gabbar responds with an amazing display of black humour, and sends him back home....hands-free.


Not one to be done in so easily, and also because he was beginning to enjoy this game of 'badla-badla', Thakur hatches a plan to get back at Gabbar. He sends for Inspector Bajrang Pandey.

The original plan was to book Inspector Pandey's railway ticket directly to the village station. However, a steep hike in rail fares makes Thakur resort to a 'super-value-saver' plan of booking the rail ticket for only half the distance, and then forcing Pandey to cover the remaining distance on 'horsepower'. Here's recorded footage:-


Inspector Bajrang Pandey is clearly not amused with Thakur's kanjoosi austerity measures. He makes known his feelings.


Quickly smarting from his faux pas, the Inspector seeks to know why he was called. The answer he gets makes him realise that his reservations about Thakur's orientation had been well-founded all along.


Jai and Veeru. Petty criminals. And yet, the quintessential Bollywood 'good-at-heart' heroes. When they're not burgling someone's house, these 'friends' move around aimlessly, painting towns pink with their antics. Check out their vintage Spicegirls-esque dance moves.


They're always focussing on giving 'stiff' competition to other criminal brothers.


Thakur stalks them around town. When he finally manages to grab their attention, he spills the beans.


Thakur and his raging hormones...sheesh!

Anyway, he tells Jai and Veeru about his plan to capture Gabbar - ALIVE. In true-blue Indian corporate style, he promises them ample growth opportunities, job satisfaction, perks, free transport, work-life balance and salaries as per industry standards. And they fall for it! Haha! Suckers!

As expected, they arrive at the village taxi stand...at their own expenses.

With no taxi in sight to take them to Thakur's 'mansion', they decide to travel cattle-class.

They hire Basanti's tonga. Basanti is the village chatter-box. Her hobbies include exercising her vocal chords for no rhyme or reason and boring people to death. Her horse's name is Dhanno. Both seem to have a bad reputation, because apparently, everyone in the village had taken a ride.

For reasons more suited to primates, Veeru has the hots for Basanti. He engages in a very enriching one-way conversation with her. Jai is not amused with the new development. 'Maybe he's looking at the prospect of free transport facilities', he thinks. Insecurity creeps in.


Finally reaching Thakur's office after an extremely torturous one-way chat session in the tonga, Jai and Veeru have a formal induction. They quickly undergo 'on-the-job' training. They also get to hear a gazillion horror stories from Ramlal about Thakur giving crap.

Their personal lives, however, are not sailing smoothly. Veeru is slowly but surely drifting away from Jai and spending more time with motor-mouth Basanti.


Finally sensing that his relationship with Veeru is as good as over, Jai begins to seek whiter greener pastures. He spots Thakur's always-in-white widowed Bahu, Radha.


In a matter of hours, the romantic tension that was just a spark in the morning had soon turned into a forest fire. The whole village could tell that Jai was smitten.

It wasn't hard to guess. It was all so obvious.


Soon, Jai can't handle his desperation. He wants to take this relationship with Radha to a different level. With Veeru having smoothly sailed through the beginner's level with Basanti, Jai feels he needs to act fast. He decides it is best to skip the 'intermediate' level and take his relationship directly to the 'expert' level without wasting time.


One day, Gabbar sends three of his collection agents, led by Kaalia, to Walmart the village to fetch his gang's monthly ration. Ramlal, who also doubles up as the village watch-tower manager, sees them coming and quickly warns the villagers. All of a sudden, the gaanv-waaley swing into action and act busy. They ignore the collection agents' demands. Having exhausted all their energy, the trio turn back. Jai and Veeru (who till then are hiding like snipers and smoking their beedis) decide to play target practice with them as they gallop away, just for kicks.

Of course, Gabbar is left fuming at his collection agents' performance. Since it was performance appraisal time, he decides to cut his wage costs by gunning them down laying them off (without severance package, gratuity and other benefits). Of course, in Indian Corporate style, he pretends to take his HR Manager's advice before taking the step.



Wasting no time, Gabbar immediately decides to organise a recruitment drive in the village to fill the three vacant positions in his gang. He tells his HR Manager to choose a 'holiday' for the same, so that candidates wouldn't have to compromise on their current work commitments to make themselves available for the interviews. But Samba doesn't hear Gabbar too well (what do you expect when he's always seated so high, out of the audibility radius), and chooses HOLI-day for the recruitment drive.

But Indians love their HOLI-day. After all, we men can't just let a one-day no-holds-barred license to get wicked naughty with the ladies slip out of our hands so easily, can we? So the villagers give Gabbar's interview calls a miss.

This incenses Gabbar so much that he comes to the village himself, with a more aggressive approach. There, he bumps into Jai and Veeru. Sensing an opportunity to hire skilled labour for cheap, he gives them job offers that he doesn't want them to refuse. But to his utter disappointment, they say no thank you. After all, girlfriend izzat naam ki bhi koi cheez hoti hai!

Disappointed, Gabbar goes to an open-air dance bar to drink his sorrows away, and to enjoy a DANCE performance.


But spoilsports that they are, Jai and Veeru show up and spoil the fun with sutli bombs and Diwali rockets. Nevertheless, poetic justice is done, when a sutli bomb bursts in Jai's hand.

Having had their fill of cheap thrills, Jai and Veeru get back to the village. Radha wastes no time in tending to Jai's injured thumb nail. Seeing the PDA, Veeru suddenly realises that he has a lot of catching up to do. He promptly resorts to Bollywood's fool-proof "Sing A Song To Ding-Dong" formula to get a promotion from motor-mouth Basanti.


After getting Basanti on board (WTF! How??), Veeru seeks Jai's help to convince Basanti's Mausi to agree to their alliance. Jai does the needful.


The wedding would eventually take place a few months later, much after the end of this movie. Didn't end too well though. The following was the last available footage of Veeru, taken a couple of days after the wedding.


Meanwhile, Gabbar is still sulking about the massive 'iggy' his recruitment drive has elicited. He's in urgent need of procurement officers. So he decides to adopt an even more aggressive approach to hiring, an approach that would make even multi-level marketing guys gawk in admiration.

This is Imam Saheb. He's old and blind (awww). He constitutes the minority quota that is so typical of Bollywood movies. He's an absolute gem of a person. If he was Christian, his name would've probably been Michael, and he'd have been the jolly good owner of a beer-bar.


This is Ahmed. He is Imam Saheb's young son. We already know he is Muslim because of his name and because we know who his father is. But the costume designer still wants to be sure that we idiots don't get confused. So here is how Ahmed is made to look 24x7, 365 days a year.


One of these guys' fate is sealed (read: one of them is about to die) because all Muslims/Christians/Parsis/Sardarjis in a Bollywood movie are brave and sacrificing in nature.

So yes, Gabbar kills Ahmed because he refuses to stifle his career prospects by joining Gabbar's sorry bunch of donkey horse-riding losers.

When the body is sent back to the village, everyone except Imam Sahab is devastated. Why? Because Imam Saheb is from the minority, stupid. We minority peeps groom our kids to become brave and honourable, and we raise them to sacrifice their lives for honour and for the nation. Geddit suckers? Lolz.

Oh, wait, lest you miss an evergreen classic moment, here it is.


Next, Gabbar gets Basanti kidnapped (haha, crazy daring shit).


Why does he kidnap her? Just because he wants to see her dance. Yeah, weirdass stuff.

Veeru finally realises that matters are serious (that's what girls do to you, they make you serious about everything), and sets off on a rescue mission. Alas, he gets caught in Gabbar's trap, because Ramesh and Suresh had made his patloon ek bilaang choti.

Gabbar forces Basanti to dance if she wants a Koffee with Karan gift hamper her lover to live. She obliges and floors everyone with her never-seen-before moves.


While Gabbar and his merry men lay on the floor clutching their bellies and laughing themselves half-dead, Jai arrives on the scene and shoots down a dozen helpless daakus. He also frees Veeru and Basanti, and they all try to run for their lives. A gun battle ensues, in which Jai gets fatally wounded. As he lay dying, he leaves behind a legacy for his dear friend Veeru.


Radha cries bitterly after Jai's death. But Veeru goes metal-thrashing mad. Undoubtedly, Jai was more than a talented harmonica player for him. He goes back to Gabbar's lair and slays all of his men, 'chun-chunke'.

In the end, he grabs Gabbar by the throat and is about to choke him to death when spoil-sport Thakur arrives at the scene to get a taste of the action. He commands Veeru to leave Gabbar to him. Veeru laughs hysterically as he leaves the scene, but you can't blame him for that.

Here's Thakur getting ready for the fight.

  
 
The following fight is a no disqualification, no count-out, no-holds-barred match-up.

In the left corner, from places unknown, weighing in at 330 lbs, we have Gabbar Singh.

And in the right corner, from Ramgadh village mansion, weighing in at 260 lbs, here is Thakur.


Gabbar starts off on the wrong foot. He tries to break the ice by making a risque comment.


Those would be Gabbar's last words. His sense of humour doesn't go down too well with Thakur, a Taekwondo black-belt as we can see from the following clipping. All it takes is a well-timed and well-directed drop kick from Thakur to kill Gabbar. If India had a few more talented prodigies like him, our crime rates would've been incredibly low.



And from there on, everyone lived happily ever after.

Except for Ramlal of course.


The End.

SHOLAY is and always has been one of my all-time favourite movies. For one, it has Amitabh Bachchan in it. Secondly, it had the right amount of melodrama in it - not too much. It is one the best 'Revenge' dramas and friendship stories every essayed. Jai's dying scene still brings tears to my eyes...sometimes. 

This post is the result of inspiration I got from reading another blog. Tons of applause for IMAANSHEIKH.

Disclaimer: This post does not claim ownership of any of the pictures displayed unless stated otherwise. We do not intend or attempt to offend anyone with this post. It is purely for tongue-in-cheek entertainment and in jest. Some images used in this website are taken from the web and are therefore believed to be in the public domain. If any images posted here are in violation of copyright law, please contact us and we will gladly remove the images immediately.

Cheers

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