Thursday, March 22, 2007

free at last

Parameshwaree as released Thursday at 10:00 a.m..

Discharge papers to release Mawbima journalist, Munusamy Parameswaree, 25, who was arrested on 22nd November under Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA), and held for nearly four months, on suspicion of "helping the LTTE and a suspected suicide bomber," were sent Wednesday morning, by Harshika De Silva, State Counsel representing the Attorney General (AG), to Colombo chief Magistrate Court.
Parameswaree's friend, Ms Thambirajah Susanthi, is still in jail.


Few Definitions

Chris forwarded this to me... Not bad ... If you wonder who this Chris is, i will tell you someday...

Life Insurance: A contract that keeps you poor all your life so thatyou can die Rich.
Nurse: A person who wakes u up to give you sleeping pills.
Lecture: An art of transferring information from the notes of theLecturer to the notes of the students without passing through "the minds of either"
Conference: The confusion of one man multiplied by the number present.
Father: A banker provided by nature.
Criminal: A guy no different from the rest....except that he got caught.
Politician : One who shakes your hand before elections and your Confidence after.
Doctor : A person who kills your ills by pills, and kills you by bills.
Classic : Books, which people praise, but do not read.
Smile: A curve that can set a lot of things straight.
Yawn: The only time some married men ever get to open their mouth.
Experience : The name men give to their mistakes.
Atom Bomb: An invention to end all inventions.
Philosopher : A fool who torments himself during life, to be spoken of when dead.



Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Age of Innocence

Of late, I have developed a desire to move away from this conservative city to a new city and new life. I feel like reaching the stagnation point at work. No inspiration at all. It is all too mundane and murky.

Then I will have to leave my loving ones behind for a few years. For we are not sure how the little one will adjust to new climates, be it bang or bomb or del. I would love to live in Cal, but may be later as I age. Not for now.

I will have to set out on my own. Whenever I am free from family, I have always worked hard and true. Still, the family lingers in me making me reluctant to leave them to work far away from home. But again, If experience is life, I have no new experiences.

I sleep with these thoughts.

Early last morning, I awoke to innocence. As it dawned, the white light seeped in with the wind through the flowery-curtained window with deep brown frames. The little one was fast asleep, in innocence.

I have the habit of looking at the faces of little ones all these years, especially early in the morning. I am not sure if I should post a picture here. May be my loving one will object. I am sure many of you, particularly the parents, have experienced a similar sight in your bedroom.

Baked in that white soft light, I have watched sleeping children for hours till the glow gets yellowish. I look at the mirror and I see no innocence. I take a look at others sleeping in home. It is not there.

Where have we lost our innocence? In the daily struggle for work and money or by living along wicked and greed; by thinking triviality or by consumerist senses; by forgetting the child in us or by the sheer hatred the humanity has accumulated. I am not sure.

And then a thought gently flowed into me. I imagined the soft light bathing the earth as it revolved ceaselessly. By now, the sun was bathing the sub-continent with his soothing light as it dawned early. For ages, the mornings have dawned on us in perfect innocence.

Our elders woke to it. May be, we are sleeping over that blissful innocence (of the morning). Are most of us not living in the darkest corners of our minds, living our deepest desires (not necessarily known to others) strung together by that ticking time? If you want to see the beauty of timelessness, watch the little ones sleeping blissfully in the mornings.

Then, I slowly sensed time. Vaguely, I think time too is innocent.


Sunday, March 18, 2007

partying with salma hayek

When I told my father that I am off to a party, he was surprised. He knew I quit drinking long time before. And he happens to be the one who bailed me out twice before for street fights after a hard drink when in the university.

When I said I will be in the company of girls (drinking), he was kind of bewildered. I did not realise what was in store for me. As with most partying nights, it was a disastrous start. Few feet before the pub, the cop caught me talking over cell while driving.

No papers, no wallet. I had only the jean, t-shirt and mobile. No wonder my mom, wife and now my daughter call me absent minded prof.

Stood stupid for a short-while. Called salma as well as Sush to bail me out. Salma spoke to S, chief, T. ``Ask your friend to leave the vehicle and produce the documents and take it later.'' It did not work. With all respect to him, you cant expect him to call a constable! We had to apologise.

Somehow, sush got the local inspector to bail me out. I walked up the stairs. The burly (burmese?) guard before the pub stopped me straight. ``Shoes are compulsory for gentlmen, Sir''. This is not the Tamil country where lakhs walk bare foot. This is the new world.

Big B, the host, promising to show the changing chennai, came down to help. B's business card helped. Enter Z. It looked awful at first. For someone who hates girls smoking, there were many, many of them. As I sat down, a punjabi girl, dressed in pink, lighted a fag. Behind, to the left, a lean Iyer girl, slightly stoned, drew it in deeply and to the left, a saree clad young lady, was smoking in style.

It was a smoke filled room. It has been years. For someone who revelled in smoky rooms, this one was a bit different. Here, women were smoking harder than the handsome young men, looking little foolish. They were happy to hug the girls. I was not sure about their thinking talents.

Opposite, Salma was sitting with her vodhka and Big B with gin.

I switched side to have a better view of the whole room. Far right, two lovers were living to themselves. To the left, the man with one eye was helping the others in his table over the next drink. Apart from the smoke, the crowd was swinging to the beat. ``Pink Flyod,'' said Salma, once. I had no clue to the composers but the beats were swerving everyone of them.

It was an enjoyable evening in the company of changing culture. Only, the group opposite, the cultureless software pros, were shouting over their pharynx. Smoke, drink and music. A heady mix for talking sensitive and sensual things. Sounds spoil.

The cricket match on the big screen was another spoiler. It took away the companionship but gave way to loads of laughter and cheers as we and our sworn enemies were losing it badly. By now, the Lord has joined. It is amusing to observe his eagerness for a drink or two. I haven't seen his face lighting up often, except when he is offered a drink. For the record, he went home to wear a pair of shoe to dash down to the pub.

They had two drinks each. Salma was forced into the second. And swerved a lil bit at the end. I drank pineapple juice! Predicting the changes to come to this conservative city, Big B asked what will I do as a father (of a daughter). ``Will I police her?''

``I have no problems. As long as she doesn't hurts herself.'' I was not so sure later. For I, as a father, am not for my daughter to smoke or drink. From my experiences, read as mistakes, I am quite sure that there is no need for anyone to smoke or drink. But if life is a big party, why not a few times?

All four felt fine. Down, I saw Salma's friend hug a bearded bear a dozen times in half-a-dozen minutes. I have not been hugged a dozen times in all my half-life! And someone actually hugged (a reluctant) Salma. It is time to party, guys!!!

PS: Inspite of the fact that I was stinking of smoke till next morning, I loved the pub for one thing. Something precious lost quite a long time ago. Above all the smoke, smell and songs, what i loved last evening was the ambience. for friendship.

and may be for love, i suspect. for bold and beautiful symbolise change.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

beyond boundaries

it will be interesting to know how governments work in irony.

beyond the boundary.
when the sri lankan navy continued to fire on tamil fishermen, the tamil government, led by the dmk, oranised a massive protest rally and gave a memorandum to the lankan government's representative in the city. we can't tolerate this human rights violation any more, he said. across the seas, there are thousands and thousands fighting for survival, all along he said we want india to help out. he has been saying this for ten months now. human rights violations continue to happen in the island nation non-stop. of course, it has been a long time we have heard someone terming mk as the leader of world tamils.

down here in the city. he has been talking about airport expansion. only talking and of course promising not to demolish constructed houses. where will come the green field airport then. oragadam or sriperumbudur? why not take up the land of the rich and politicians in the old mahabalipuram road. if you are going to have a six lane super high-way over there, then why not have your airport on that stretch? if the government is not for destroying the homes of the poor, then it is also not for taking over the land of the rich worth crores and compensate in lakhs. that could be for more dangerous than shifting the poor and lower middle class. wonder where will development come from.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

you are free to spend my girl

It is now very clear that Chief Minister M Karunanidhi has given a blank cheque to his daughter Kanimozhi for the Chennai's folk festival Chennai Sangamam, that concluded amidst controversy.

The Government Order issued hurriedly on Feb 13, a week before the festival, virtually granted the Special Commissioner of Tourism to fund the initiative of Tamil Maiyam, of which Kanimozhi is the co-ordinator.

The GO No 20 allows the Tourism Special Commissioner to spend ``beyond the ceiling (of Rs 3 lakh)'' and send a statement of expenditure for an ``after-issue sanction''. Meaning, the government has directed the special commisioner approve of all the costs incurred after the event is over.

At the press meet, as well as afterwards, the organisers have been defending that the government only took care of the logisitics for the event and as such did not spend any money. Can MK order an audit?

Very unlikely. For the tired soul, as a father, can be proud of only his daughter to have his literary skills and his love for Tamil language. It need not be mentioned that the three sons are known rogues.

Sea of Serenity

I just finished reading Vikram Sarabhai - a life -

I am amazed. I expect you to.

First, we all know V was the inspiration behind our space programme. Last fortnight, Madhavan Nair, one of the rocket boys, talked about V's vision. Kalam's ignited mind will vouch for it.

Two, V founded the Physical Research Laboratory. Of which not many of us have any idea.

Three, V founded IIM-Ahmedabad. Ironically, to train managers for our own country.

Four, V founded ORG. The first market research group.

Five, V founded ATIRA (I guess i am right). It is the research body for textiles in Ahmedabad.

Six, personally he created the Sarabhai Chemicals from scratch.

I think I have forgotten one or two.

Virkam was the first one to talk of using television for education (not entertainment).

And, Till now, V seems to be the only one in DAE to have resisted the temptation for n-bombs.

Truly a visionary. Like many, I also thought why he died early. We missed out.

Salutes to the Sarabhai spirit.

Hope such spirits haunt a new generation.

By the way, a huge crater in the Sea of Serenity in the Moon has got Vikram Sarabhai's name.

agri universities...


No one expected the national budget to be such a stupid one. Headlines scream Advantage Farm Inc. It is truly suggestive of things happening here. Slowly, the Inc-s are going to take over the farm lands.

The small farmers can committ suicide. The marginal farmers can sell their land to the big farmers and may be to the corporates. Already, the corporates have started eating the dry lands (waste lands). Reliance and Co are into the retail chain.

Paddy cultivation is going down. The farmers want only money and so are happy to go for cash rich crops. Or they are prepared to use whatever prescribed for better yield. There is no fixed price for the produces. The markets determine everything. And now we have the online commodity exchange!

And the states are subtly inching towards GM rice without strictly following the bio-safety rules. The water wars are becoming acute. No national river policy in place. And the budget's thrust is on agriculture, aam admi. Pure politics.

Hope the government comes up with support structures to really reach the farmers and lift them up. Meanwhile, agriculture is a state subject. And the states will waste money like the water wasted by the farmers.

And TN Agri University has got Rs 50 crore. VC feels that they should have given 50 more. Two years ago, I spent time with few deans of the varsity. Except the extension guy, the other two easily accepted that they were working in the interests of the big farmers!

Stories From The Soul Town

There lies a magical land. Surrounded by the green ghats to the west, gurgling great rivers on the east, the valley with the very blue sky. A temple town of the tamils. Sitting on the dancing rock on the highland overlooking the valley, the writer procreates the lives of the people of this lesser known south west. Full of strange yet simple souls.