Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Education

Offlate, my 34 size Levis has been yearning for some rest, urging for the 36 to take over. This can be attributed to the (a) sumptuos lunch at office (b) the chicken egg roles off it.

But I am determined to reduce the extra kilos and enter ISB in perfect shape.

Yesterday was like any other chilly Delhi 6 a.m. I was puffing and gasping on my way home after a 30min jog. I saw a few kids (probably aged 5 or 6) wearing tiny red school uniforms and monkey-caps. They were waiting for the school-bus with one of the kids' mom seeing them off. I was pitying those little souls for carrying such heavy school bags so early in the morning...adults like us would be enjoying their mid-night dream at such an hour...!

Just then, a group of 4 corpulent punjabi aunties marched down the road from the opposite side..Their exhalations could be heard from a distance and they were walking parallel to each other, hardly leaving any space for the doodhwala on cycle to pass thru..Just as I crossed the aunties and the kids on the footpath, one of them cried "Auntie, please walk in a file, you may get hit by a vehicle from behind. Ritu Miss says that you should always form a queue while boarding a bus or walking on a busy road"...

The aunties were agaped, the other kids staring as if they all felt the same way, their mother a bit embarassed and I could barely stop myself from giggling.. As I turned back, the aunties were actually walking one behind other. Probably they were missing out on some "kyuki saas bhi kabhi bahu thi" (and other soaps) chat, but they would never dare take a chance again!

Our schools are doing pretty good huh..?

What if these kids continue learning and practising such values.? Definitely some optimism!

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Rang De Basanti

Rang De Basanti is a MUST SEE for all Indians, especially the youth.

I would categorize its implications as:

1> After all its a movie: Bollywood is definitely improving. Gone are the days when we had the protagonist as a coolie or a labourer falling in love with a millionaire's daughter - this petite young amrika returned gal. The antagonist (right, the heroines father) would have this name "KK" or "JJ" and would indulge in all sorts of drug dealings "aaj raat ko maal ane wala hai" etc..The hero would finally break all class barriers and after some dishum dishum nahiiiiiiiiii maaaaaaaaaaaa and of course 'the dancing around the trees' ritual would emerge as the winner.

Comes movies like Yuva, Swades and Rang de Basanti. Not only do these kinda movies reflect this new 'hat - ke' and 'professional' breed of directors /producers, but also do they signify an "educated" and "kuch karna hai" hoi polloi sitting in front of the 70mm. Movies have a very strong influence on the audience (though temporary). You can have this auntie sitting next to you and sobbing horribly when Manisha Koirala looses her leg in Mann or Kkkkkhan is convincing Kajol's onscreen mother in DDLJ with his puckered lips. But this new genre MWM (movies with message) helps you to carry this vicarious feeling even after you leave the hall.

2> Should we do something about it?: Yup! Dont go on shooting the corrupt poiliticians - that's not the message, neither is that a solution...Do the best you can,say
(a) dont spit / throw rubbish at public places
(b) always ask for a bill , even from the mom-and-pop store
(c) if you can afford, contribute to organisations like CRY, India Today's efforts to support war-widows
(d) if you are a professional, try to take sometime off on weekends and teach at a local NGO school. There are some great NGOs - like Aid (started by Indian students studying in the US, initially as a monetary contribution - forfeiting a week's pizza expense!) Teaching at the grass-root level would have far reaching benefits.
(e) only when every citizen at every nook and corner of this country becomes aware and educated, can he/she actually exercise his/her right to vote in a correct way. Uneducated massess have and will elect what we have today. Its now choosng the lesser worst amongst the lot, but there can be someday when we actually get to select the best among the better ones.

3> Amir Khan is the undisputed Bollywood hero...amazing facial expressions! I guess he must have actually wept while shooting that scene in the movie.

Well, lets really do something...