Monday, October 21, 2013

Rich country, poor country

While the festivities of Durga Puja or Navaratri is still afresh in our memories, somewhere for some people their worlds actually ended abruptly when this celebration was still on. The Datia district in Madhya Pradesh witnessed a pilgrimage gone horribly wrong when it turned into a life taking stampede swallowing over 100 lives and injuring equally in number. To add to this misfortune our nation is still battling the devastation caused by Phailin cyclone which has created turmoil in nearly a million lives.

What did moving to Australia mean to me?

The world is what you see through your glasses and mine was certainly a rose tinted one. I spurned a kaleidoscopic view of what my life would be like down under whenever I got some time on hand while still being in India.

In the beginning it was all about freedom - the freedom of being able to wear what you want, when you want and where you want.

I get nostalgic on Independence Day

An unexpressed feeling of patriotism silently starts engulfing my senses as the month of August kicks in. The Indian Independence Day is often that time of the year, every year in the past 3 years, when I inadvertently get transported back to India.

Parenting and technology: Hand in glove?

So what's more quirky about this topic —technology or parenting? May be neither or maybe it's the new-fangled combination of these two words in the modern world, which is more befuddling than the two concepts standalone. If you have kids, then I don't need to explain anything further. However, if you fall in a category like me — no kids — and yet cannot escape the boons and banes of being surrounded by kids belonging to your colleagues, friends or relatives, then I would strongly urge you to continue reading this article to understand this amazing liaison.

Do you also suffer from unconscious bias?

As human beings we are all prone to be biased in some way or other. We like certain films because it stars Katrina Kaif or Aamir Khan. Whether or not the film has any other element to hook our interest becomes immaterial for our liking. No matter how well a man cooks, we believe that it's a woman's job to cook at home because traditionally that has been a social paradigm.

How Progressive are NRIs in Developed Nations?

It's a common notion amongst us (Indians) that those people who migrate to developed countries are more progressive in their thoughts and modern in their outlook towards society, as compared to their counterparts residing in India. It wouldn't be entirely wrong to believe so owing to the variety of cultural, social and political exposures the Indian diaspora gets outside India. Alas! The reality is far from this.
Read more....

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Untold Predicament

Several eye shed big drops as I was born,
Few out of happiness but others for grief alone,
I curled and howled and wept without any tears,
Looked around with my wrinkled face sans any fear,
Tiny and clingy I came into this beautiful world,
Wrapped up in my mum’s arm, I was her baby girl.

Time went by and life started to jostle through,
I began seeing the world from my parents glowing view,
Things seemed perfect and people were nice,
Love, trust and laughter left no room for any vice,
Blossoming as a person I knitted my own dreams,
Thoughts of success, freedom & respect appeared supreme.

Crossing my adolescence as I stepped into adulthood,
I began cringing at the world’s abruptly changing mood,
My friends had to be girls because boys weren’t allowed,
Archaic rules dictated relationships while emotions were out,
Pubs were banned and jeans was frowned upon,
Having a mobile phone too became talk of the town.

My mind couldn’t fathom the cause for such mayhem,
As confidence and hope treaded slowly towards doldrums,
Right became wrong and wrong seemed to be right,
Fulfilling social dictums made dilemma my usual plight,
I could hear faint sobs of my trampled emotions,
Compromises marred my life from personal to professional.

My body draped in clothes provoked gentlemen,
Sari or shorts did not make any difference,
I was raped, assaulted and blatantly blamed too,
For turning on the beast with my immoral ado,
Fragile egos and false pride still remained unquenched,
They battered my soul to seek further revenge.

Limelight which I had sought dawns finally in my fate,
Media and politicians sting repeatedly to fire up debate,
Pity, sympathy and anger now stage vicious blame game,
Talking about my rape gives them their 15 seconds of fame,
They want me to voice and fight for my cause,
My lacerated soul wonders do we really have any laws?

Society, judiciary and patriarchs mock at my predicament,
They rip apart my pride and expect no abasement,
Which is this land where girls are considered booties?
Isn’t safeguarding my pride my country’s prime duty?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

About Swiss mountains and Mustard fields

Yash Chopra, the man who defined and molded romance in the Hindi films, was much more than just a prolific film maker. He was a brand who will be remembered for his classic style of story-telling and for infusing romance in the hearts of common (wo)man of India. But he occupies another lofty position in the hearts and minds of millions of NRIs who are eternally thankful to him for eulogizing their community with his ethereal display of Swiss mountains and mustard fields, a task which has been religiously and beautifully carried forward by filmmakers like Aditya Chopra and Karan Johar.

He displayed a very refreshing sense of film making showcasing wide range of emotions many of which defied the societal norms of relationship and cultural bandwagon. The protagonists of his stories exemplified multidimensional characters with layers of emotions which were more close to the real life. Yash Chopra has also being a pioneer in projecting women and her bewitching beauty clad in nine yards of chiffon amidst the serene Swiss Alps. He was a true visionary who churned out stories which were much ahead of their time. Some of his cult films like Lamhe and Silsila did not set the box office on fire but displayed some crackling chemistry between its lead pairs, which is remembered by people till this date.

Yash Chopra’s last directorial venture, aptly named Jab Tak Hai Jaan (Till my last breath) sums up his life and his passion for cinema in a very succinct manner. He passed away just days away from his latest film’s release date. Known as the King of Romance in Bollywood, his movies depicted romance and explored human relationships with different elements each time, much beyond the candyfloss tales. He has shown that love transcends all –be it political border, cross generations or even the marital vows. He also led the way in multi-starrer movies and social dramas and helped shape up careers of two most prominent and unforgettable super stars of Hindi cinema – Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan.

When one chooses their favourite film directed by Yash Chopra, it’s not so much about quality as it is about taste. A directorial career spanning over fifty years and a range comprised of fine of social dramas, thrillers, and romantic films, makes the task of choosing his best film a most difficult one. Who can forget the mesmerising lover and poet of Kabhi Kabhi, the angry young man of Deewar, the chirpy yet ravishing girl of Chandni, the obsessed lover of Darr and several other characters from his movies which have captivated the hearts and minds of cinema lovers across the world. 

It wouldn’t be wrong to say this man taught a country of a billion people the inexplicable art of loving. Those subtle, nuanced, romantic sweet nothings that were engendered from the brain of that man, have always had a way with people – no matter how much they would want themselves to be impervious to that emotion called love. While his last movie Jab Tak Hai Jaan, might not have created a cinematic explosion at the box office, nonetheless this movie would always be remembered for being his last stint with the silver screen and for eulogizing romance in his typical style. The memories of Yash Chopra will live as long as the lovers of Hindi Cinema exist in the world and these will speak through his very many stories of human emotions and relationships like eternity.