Sunday, January 29, 2006


software engg. will apreciate this

Dilbert Comic Strip Archive - - The Official Dilbert Website by Scott Adams - Dilbert, Dogbert and Coworkers!

whats happening to lal

was just wondering ..what happened to Lal..he hasnt update his web-site since ages

lal's web-site

This book/movie chnged my life

Lokesh about my comment on my future movie changing peoples lives. this was a pun..inspired by the thought that reviews at amazon have this statement so many times that i wonder if this is true than why isnt the world a better place. Then I questioned how long does this effect last in response to another post at Kanishk Sinha 's blog
Prometheus' odyssey -

As an example look at the reviews of the movie 'Fight Club' - the original english version not the desi one.

another example


Saturday, January 28, 2006

last seen

saw this movie on the way to london. good one especially the fact that the relationships between the sisters has been treated in a matured way and the characterization of the grand-mother has been handled well.

Thankfully there are still movies which talk about other kinds of relationships other than the boy-girl kind of love story.

IIT geeks form political party,curpg-1.cms

link courtsey rohit koshy


Observations -

Why do most of the ppl change when they move out of school or home. I have seen a lot of people who are completely transformed once they move out of school and enter college especially if they are staying in hostel in a different city.

Some people that I know of used to practice Yoga regulary till they were in school. One of them even claimed that he had got a few awards in Yoga competition (whatever that is supposed to mean) But these people have now completly given up on practicing Yoga and when reminded of this mostly claim that they have forgotton all the exercises and most importantly they dont have time for it anymore.

Some people that I know of used to do pooja twice a day and would not consume food till they had completed their daily ritual ( I will include myself here ) But these people now cant even remember when was the last time they had done this ( 2 years ..err. no wait 1.5 years .. when I had gone home for Diwali and I had to sit for the laxmi Pooja) Thankfully, at least I can remember this - 3 weeks back . My room-mate at Stephens used to go to the church every Sunday but when I met himlast week he told me that he had not been to a church since last 3 years. Now the only 2 people that I know of who do something along this line are the people who had taken up AOL (Art of Living) exercise a few years ago and have continued eve since.

Some people that I know of used to jog and do physical exercise regularly (I will include myself here) but have long given it up. There are only 2 people that I know of who have continued this. The rest of the athletic people I know of are the ones who started this in college and have been addicted to this ever since. One of them recently completed the Mumbai marathon and the other had completed the half-marathon in Singapore last year. (I can claim that I am one of the active types if twice in a month would let me qualify for this)

Some people that I know of used to be extremly sincere for academics but once in college completely gave up on studies (me included) Reasons attributed were many - the education system is bad, its just not worth it, I never wanted to study this course I came here by default (my argument), marks count for nothing only personality matters for success, I dont associate myself with this system, the profs are really bad - they dont know aything and cant teach so might as well skip the class. Some of these people could not even manage to complete their college. While on the other end some people that I know of were extremly hostile to the idea of studies but took to it seriously at a later stage and did brilliantly. My flat-mate at ISB used to barely pass till class 11th but got transformed, went to IIT-K (9 pointer) and among top 20 at ISB and is now making big dollars in NY

Keshav Da used to tell me that there are 2 big events which transforms a person's thinking, behaviour and attitude - once the person takes up a job and secondly when the person gets married. Now I cant comment about the marriage part but would certainly like to add the college and staying away from parents part.

This reminds me of Osho's saying that the true character amd moral are tested when there are opportunities for these to be tested. If there are no temptations and you stay upright then this is not a great achievement. Along similar lines are the thoughts that true charachter is tested not under adverse cirumstances but in position of power.

Lokesh of course will attribute this entire phenomena to Discipline 102. :o) Though this does partially explain this phenomenan, I dont think this is the root cause.

Is it that once outside the home you are again forced to revalue your value system and questions the beliefs that you have always held or ideas that have forced down you throat by people around. On re-examining these you keep some, discard some and add some.

my fillum

My story -

Story thought of in 1995 (when I was going through the anti-dam, anti one-sided development, anti anti-people public policies and heavy on ideas of NBA - narmada bacho andolan & Medha Patkar )

Story first written as a submission for a 10 marks assignment in the humanities (HU) course - 'Workshop in creative writing' at iit-d. i have forgotton the name of the prof (does anybody recall ? she took up a job in DU afterwards) She gave me 8 marks (one of the highest for the submission) & 1 comment (Very Good Ending) on this assignment. Managed a B grade in this course which pushed my CGPA upwards. Happened all the time, my non-enginering course grades were always better.

I had wanted to write a script for a short fillum on this story line and had preserved the assignment. had thought on this often, visualized the camera angles and the dialogs and the characters and the lighting effects and the money required for this project and the response of the people and the awards this will win and the peoples life that would get changed because of this .. BUT i never actually got around to writing the script.. < 'I am very poor in execution' - is my usual response to get out of these uncomfortable truths >

My general comment -

All that stays with you for life after an engg degree is what you learn in all the non-engg courses. The engg courses are a waste of time.

My experience -

1995. I went to nainital for the autumn break from college. Our family and relatives went to Jageshwar temple for 2 days. We stayed at TRC(tourist reception center) a new hotel that had come up. TRC was overflowing with people. I had gone to jageshwar after almost 10 years and I thought about my previous visit. That time I had gone there with my grandmother accompanied by a bus-full of people from nainital. Since there was no TRC or any other hotel we all had slept on the ground-floor of the priest's house which was located right across the main temple.

Now I was told that this practice of staying at peoples house and paying them a nominal amount had stopped. Visitors either stayed at TRC or better still returned on the same day without a night stay (facilitated by the better road which made this possible)

So my thoughts went back and forth 10 years and finally the priest, the owner of the house became the central character. I visualized how things would have changed for him and his family in the last 10 years.

My script -

are u serious. do u really think I would donate my IP to the world just like that... does msft publishes its source code on a blog ?

send me a personal email for this and you will get your copy on a strict 'NO FORWARD' basis ;o)

My appeal -

Plese donate genorously for this cause and in return you get to the play the character that you like in the script.

Better still become a equity partner in this venture.

Interested ?

Abhishek Shukla's (forecasted) comment ;o) -

tu nahi sudhrega .. bhooka, bechara, nange kisaan ki teri favourite story line .. kisann jisne max types mehnat kar ke loan ke paise se crop lagayi ..lekin monsoon fali ho gayi .. crop khatam ho gayi aur kisaan bhooka mar gaya .. Mai teri fillum finance nahi karunga .. mujhe paise doobane ka shauk nahi hai

Thats why I only ask for donations from shukla and refuse to show him the script

Suceess in life

Suceess in life

I have often been involved in heavy discussion on the topic - 'how do you define sucess in life?'

Having read many definitions and having had many such conversations I come to the same conclusion - the definition given 8 years ago by my dear friend Deekshant ( who now runs Roots Education is the one I find appealing.

He had said during one of those night-outs chat sessions filled with ghazals & black-coffee made over the heater of his room while we were preparing to enter the real world (fourth year - last semester)

'Success in life is to be able to define your own parameters of success.' If you are able to defiy the general rules of success defined by the society such as to settle in US, earn a lot of money, buy luxurious stuff; and define your own rules of the game; then only will u be able to claim that you have succeeded in life. It is not important that you achieve what you have defined but the task of defining and working towards those goals is success.

hmmm.. come to think of it . isnt the theory of NKK (nish-kaam karma ) being played out over here

Hats off to sheru for this profound statement. Till date i have found no one who could contradict this successfully.

As for me I am still struggling with this question, and Yes I have still not succeeded in life and am far off from it. Yes I am still working on this. Now sheru will point out and say - Sahu u are still confused.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

read last week-end

Conversations with God by Neale Donald

Great book .. heavily recommended.

What I really appreciate about this book is that it does not subscribe to a well-defined religious/spiritual/cult groups. It seeks to answer the most basic question raised by humans in the simplest of terms, from first-principals by brushing aside all assumptions or prejudices we may have.

Friday, January 20, 2006

somebody is moving on ...

Sidin is moving on in life...

I wonder how many of us will be able to take a decision like this. For me it looks like that I will still be in the corporate job for the next 5 years.

Domain Maximus: Rambler for hire..: "Finally after weeks of contemplation and thought and watching Friends reruns I have decided to finally do it. A few days from now I will cease to be a consultant. Instead I will be a writer."



Rajeev has commented on my ramblings on Globalization -

"I do not agree with you that capital movement must necessarily followed by movement of labor. Capital movement creates localized oppurtunities which according to me is good."

> Rajeev, I was not saying that movement of labour follows capital movement. What I was trying to imply that the term globalization is usually meant as free transfer of capital especially by the developed world and they tend to ignore all issues of labour movement. What they want you to do is abolish quota system and lower import tarrifs but are not willing to allow free labour movement into their country. This I find as unfair.

"I think the fact that globalization is necessary cannot be ruled out, the debate is ofcourse how much do you globalize."

> I agree with you. As is true with most things in life, a healthy balance is what is required.

"And as far as america dumping mind numbing work in search of cheap labor, dude nobody is pointing a gun at u and forcing you to do that work. Nobody stopped narayn murthy to create google but he chose to create infosys didnt he? now whose fault is it?"

> hmm.. nobody is forcing anybody to do any of these kinds of job but eventually the money factor weighs in. Thats why I appreciated the honest confession in the book "call center" where the character says that he has become a prostitute because he is working at a mind-numbing job which he does not like only for the money - essentially selling his mind for money. On Infy & Google I had once posted simiilar thoughts on sulekha.

No wonder I appreciate people like Sidin who decided to quit job and do what they erally want. Check-out

On a side note I recall a job-interview that I gave a year back.

Q - You seem to have done a lot of various stuff - Enginerring, NGO's Software, Start-ups, MBA & Finance.. now what exactly are your career plans and in which area
A - I see myself working in a job for the next 3 years, till the time I am paying off my loan, after that I do not know if I will continue a job
Q - hmm intresting .. so you have no long term commitmemnt to our company in caswe we decide to offer you a job
A - No, all I can promise is 2 years.

Q - So what is your dream job ?
A - Honestly speaking .. my dream job is 'doing nothing'
Q - ha ha ha .. what a answer, even I would like that at some point in my life, but practically speaking what is a your dream job
A - There are jobs and then there are 'dream-jobs' There is nothing like a practical dream - job

Q - Ok what are your views on the Indian Stock Market. On CNBC analaysts are giving conflicting signals as to the dorection of the market. What do you think of their analysis.
A - Sorry Sir, I dont know what the analysts are saying as I do not have a TV at home.
Q - (surprised)oh .. so you dont have a tv at home.. well maybe then you would be able to give me your independednt view on the market without getting biased by the CNBC analysts .
A - Well the long-term outlook .............. long 5 minute gyan

No wonder I did not get the job for being too honest in my answers ;o)

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Neem Karoli Baba

My Spiritual Guru Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry


Many people meditate near the samadhi. The atmosphere of the ashram is very peaceful.

The notice board says -

Mahabalipuram Beach

Had long wanted to take a picture like this .. with colourful fishing boats lined up on the beach. Posted by Picasa

Pondicherry beach

Went on a drive to Pondicherry last Saturday with Anshuman, Mittal & Shukla Posted by Picasa

Shukla's farewell .. Lehman Brothers, Mumbai. ( L to R - Katre couple, me, Shukla, Mittal, Anshuman)

I am not happy with the night image quality of P200, the flash is too weak.

Now Listening

Best of the Beast - Iron Maiden

Completed Reading


Last night completed this short biography on Ramakrishna Paramahamsa. My intrest in him was awakened when I had a discussion on the main religious gurus of India with my uncle around a year back. He was of the opinion that Ramakrishna, Kabir, Sai Baba and Osho were the people of the highest order. I had at that point of time purchsed some books on Ramakrishna and had made some hal-hearted attempts to understand his philosophy.

In December on the Jet - Airways flight from chennai to delhi I was browsing the in-flight magazine. As usual the articles were a mix of the beautiful places and how you can reach there using the Jet Airways. On the city of calcutta there was a decription of Ramakrishna and in particular one sentence - that he had attained realization not only from the traditional ways of Hinduisim but also through Islam and Christanity. Now this was quite difficult to digest. So I wanted to understand what was the truth. In nainital I spoke to Uncle ji and he confirmed that it took Ramakrishna just 3 days to attain the state of realization through Christanity.

Now this was of deep intrest to me as I had not come across this before. I have often come across the sayings that - all religions are equal and that no one method or belief is superior to another. But I had not heard of anyone following multiple paths to reach the same goal.

It turns out that Ramakrishna practicesed the Bhakti Yoga, Tantric practices, Islam and Christanity during different phases of his life. Posted by Picasa

Soul Coughing

.. Now Listening ..

Discovered a group which I had never listened to before. Album - 'Irresistible Bliss' Group - 'Soul Coughing' Wonderful mix of Rock & Jazz

On globalization and local issues

> Another news about uttaranchal.
> Outsiders(other states) can now purchase land in Uttaranchal.
> Would it be wise of us to sell our lands to outsiders?
> What say?

My Response -

To answer your question, we must start at the most general question - is free market economy or globalization good, neutral or bad. Only once we have formed our opinion on this topic we would be able to come down and answer - if free land purchase in Uttaranchal is good for the local residents or not.

On globalization, free-market economy and capitalisim -
This is one of the most complex question and no matter how much I have tried to read on this subject I havent been able to conclusively conclude on this.

On one side are people such as Jagdish Bhagwati & Martin Wolf who are die-hard fans of globalization and on the other side are people such as Joseph Stiglitz who after seeing the free market forces at work are against the concept of globalization. Then there are people like Amartya Sen and Arundhati Roy who would fall somewhere in between of this debate. Then there are publications such as the Economist which take the side of the free market but would in general give a very balanced picture. Then there are organizations such as Swadeshi Jagran Manch and Baba RamDev who would want us to avoid all phoren (sic) goods.

Macroeconmics would give you a theory of 'Comparative Advantage' which would show that under certain set of assumptions its always better for countries to trade.

Issues involved are quite complex. Take the example of agricultural subsidies. The popular argument is that developed countires, most notably US, France and UK subsidize the farming sector and dump these agricultural commodities in the international market. Hence, the logic goes, the goods being exported from poor countries in Africa & Asia cannot compete in the international market. This practice has lead to the scenario of poor countries being cut-off from the maket and people living in povety. Simple & straight forward you would say.
But a conflicting report on the same topic suggests that it is because of these subsidies that poor people in such countries are able to feed its people. Argument is that the poor countries have anyways not been producing enough to export, on the contrary they have been importing these cheap agricultural commodoties to feed the people. So in essence the subsidies are free gift from the developed economies and ending this would make the emerging countries worst off.

Now whome to listen to?

Stiglitz in his book - 'Globalization and its discontent' makes a strong case against World bank, IMF and globalization in general.

Privatization - again a sensitive issue - Ceratinly the case of California blackout proved that privatization may not be the correct solution in all cases.
Another example is of pharma industry where a small segment of disease would be ignored if the market is not big enough to justify the heavy R&D.

One of my favourite book - 'No Logo' argues that the concept of branding has lead great inequality and causes suffering in the third world.
The classic example is of Nike producing sneakers at the cost of $3 in south-east Asia and then selling these for $40 and above.
Manufacturing outsourcing business shifting across countries as the cost economics change - Canada, Mexico to Thailand & Philipins and devastating the local communities from where the units migrate.
Case of Macdonald's able to feed junk food to the world based on branding and the case of MacLibel. ( )
Counter-culture movements across the world and Greenpeace activitsm.
I had once asked my marketing professor about the arguments of the books. He said that such arguments and ideologies are usually not taken seriously by the business community and MBA teachings but these have the power to come back and haunt the business. The business academia should be making a effort to answer the questions raised by these kinds of books.
Economist by the way had a great article on this book and had attempted to answer the anti-globalization and anti-branding issues raised by the book.
(btw the biggest irony was that a clothing brand was started by someone called - 'No Logo' )

Another of my favourite author Noam Chomsky has written extensively on this.
To quote from Wikipedia - ""Chomsky believes that these austerity and neoliberal measures ensure that poorer countries merely fulfill a service role by providing cheap labour, raw materials, and investment opportunities for the first world. Additionally, this means that corporations can threaten to relocate to poorer countries, and Chomsky sees this as a powerful weapon to keep workers in richer countries in line."" I was introduced to his writings by Makarand Paranjape in the course 'American Literature' at IIT-D

Even mainstream commerical books such as Chetan's - One Night @ Call center echoes the sentiment that the US is dumping mind numbing work into India so that the young working professionals are sucked into the consumerism phenomenna.

btw have you noticed that the key ingredients to the economy are supposed to be capital & labour as per macroeconomics but whenever we talk about globalization people only seem to talk about the capital part, choosing to totally igore the labour angle. It is all about India opening up its economy to FDI, letting go of the quota regime, never about US opening up its border to allow free flow of people, there are still annual quotas for the same.

Now coming to the issue of outsiders purchasing land in Uttaranchal. Is it good or bad ? Again I cant say anything on this. Stopping others from coming to the state would imply that you are ok with the idea of stopping outsiders from giving employment opportunities to the people of state. Unless the demographics of the state is changing drastically or there are other environmnetal issues I see nothing wrong in this move.

Bal Thakre often gives statement to the effect - Mumbai is for Marathis not for outsiders. I certainly do not subscribe to this point of thinking. If we trace history then Bal Thare should be going to Central Asia from where the Aryans originated. Most of us then would not have claim to India as we were the outsiders, Dravidians being the original inhibants of this county

At the end, I guess it all boils down to if you have gained something out of globalization. Have you ??

Monday, January 16, 2006

Shift to digital

I would have imagined that such announcements were still a couple of years away.

Nikon Plans to Stop Making Most Cameras That Use Film - New York Times: "The Nikon Corporation, the Japanese camera maker, said Thursday that it would stop making most of its film cameras and lenses in order to focus on digital cameras."

Sunday, January 15, 2006

my home - Nainital

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My great - grand mother

She is the one who brought me up. (My mother's dadi) Posted by Picasa


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our dog ..

Phino (thats his name) Posted by Picasa

my home

Aunty ji & my mother enjoying afternoon sun on a lazy afternoon (verandah at home, Nainital ) Posted by Picasa

Friday, January 13, 2006

Parth & Donald

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Reagent Park, Baker street. Donald this is what happens when you own a camera, you are rarely to be seen in the pictures ;o) Posted by Picasa


Outside our apartment at Edgware Road Posted by Picasa

London Eye


London Eye, Paro's visit from INSEAD (Oct 2005) Posted by Picasa


manas says - "Insanity begets insanity"
Manas Garg: Insanity
Inspired by reading yesterday's book I must add - Love begets Love

Guru of Joy

Almost through with this book last night Posted by Picasa

Some good Photography

Check out my friend Lokesh Shah's site -

Fishing… » Photography

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Understanding or Underestimating

My friend Pareekh is also asking the same eternal why questions. Now I am getting some more inspiration to write the FAQ's of Life.

Understanding or Underestimating: "Why God created this world, why God want man to struggle, enjoy, suffer, achieve, fail , sleep, eat in other word why live. "

Last book read

chetan_bhagat, originally uploaded by vishal_sah.

Last night completed this in a 5 hour single sitting. I could relate to this book and some of the male characters and their aspirations and frustations.
Though I am not the best person to comment on the women's nature in general I think the weeping scenes of all 3 women were far too many. All I can recall about the 3 women is that they cried a lot through out the Night.

This book is shallower in content as compared to the previous work of the author.

Not recommended.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Khushi & Nidhi

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From Army Helipad at Chaubatia Posted by Picasa

Himalayan range

Early morning view from Chaubatia bus-station Posted by Picasa

Our cat at Chaubatia

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Jageshwar Temple


36 km from Almora in the Kumaon Hills, 1900 mt above sea level. One of the 12 jyotirlingas in India dedicated to Lord Shiva. Some of these temples date back to the 8th century AD Posted by Picasa

My Father

Enjoying the beautiful view and dhabha tea Posted by Picasa

Onward we march

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Which way uphill ?

My father, Uncle and me Posted by Picasa