Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Shayari copied from places and persons

परिंदे शुक्रगुजार हैं,पतझड़ के भी दोस्तो*

*तिनके कहां से लाते,जो सदा  बहार रहती"*

तंज़ कसते रहो तुम उम्र भर... धुएँ की कालिख पर,


मैं तो इक चराग हूँ  ....मेरी फितरत है  रौशनी देना.

इत्तफाक से तो नही टकराये हम,


कुछ तो साजिश खुदा की भी होगी

मैंने तो माँगा था थोड़ा सा उजाला अपनी जिंदगी में


वाह रे चाहने वाले तूने तो आग ही लगा दी जिंदगी में

कर सकते हो तो किसी का भला करो !! ..


बुरा करने के लिए तो मोदी जी बैठे ही हैं 

तमन्ना ने जिंदगी के आँचल में


सर रख कर पूछा -


"मै कब पूरी होउंगी?"

जिंदगी ने हँसकर जवाब दिया-


"जो पूरी हो जाये वो तमन्ना ही क्या!"

अंदर ही अंदर से


खोखले हो जाते हैं घर


जब दीवारों में


पानी भर जाता है...

मिलीं तो बहुत


तेरे बाद मगर ,

तू किसी चेहरे में


नज़र नहीं आयी

...ये कौन शख़्स है


इसको ज़रा बुलाओ तो ,

     ये मेरे हाल पे


क्यूँ मुस्कुरा के गुज़रा है ,

अजब अंदाज़ से


  ये घर गिरा है ,

   मेरा मलबा


मेरे ऊपर गिरा है , mn

नाम तो काँटों का ही लगेगा,


ये सोचकर

कई बार फूल भी, चुपचाप ज़ख्म दे जाते हैं।

Collected from internet


काम ऐसे करो कि लोग आप को TV में देखें,
ना कि CCTV 😬 में ...☠️👽☠️

****************
Why wasn't Jesus born in Australia?

God couldn't find three wise men and a virgin.
*****************
Seeing a diwali Rocket, just realised
.
.
.
That if we have to reach greater heights in life, we have no choice but  to take the support of the bottle😊😉☺😍

***************

A Gujju bought a well from a Jew.

The next day while on his way to market he met the Jew who told him "brother I have sold the well to you but I have not sold the water,if you use the water you will have to pay for it"

The Gujju replied "in fact I was planning to come to your place and ask you to empty the water and if you don't do it than you will have to pay the rent for the water ."

Disclaimer : This is a collection of messages and posts from twitter , Whatsapp facebook and other social media sites. I neither endorse the views nor follow them necessarily.

Random thoughts

18.10.2017

TINA and MINA

Some people who come with the oft repeated counterpoint of – “Then who do you think should be the leader?” wants us to believe that only a single person is responsible as well as capable to lead  our country. This sort of arguments actually brings out the closet supporters of dictatorship, who try to layer their obnoxious ideology with a coating of Majoritarian model of democracy. The thing which is conveniently forgotten is that democracy is not only a rule by majority but by the people where the minority, the marginalized and the individual too have their say without feeling that their interests are being hampered in doing so.

 Concentration of more or less unchecked power over 1.25bn people in the hands of one man cannot be a comfortable feeling. Some may coin new terms like “new normal” and apply it to whatever is happening around. But the fact remains that it is not only normal in a democracy; it is dangerous. No single person should be vested with so much power. One-man rule is ultimately a recipe for intrigue, instability and breakdown of institutions. It also results in arbitrary decisions like demonetisation being taken, without a proper analysis or preparation. 

******************

Woke up to an unusual foggy (or should I  smoggy) morning. It is happening since the last few days, but today the visibility was very bad . At 6.30 in the morning, as I was on my morning walk,  I could not see anything beyond 250 metres. Why this is happening can be probably explained by experts . I have my own theory ; this smog may be a result of the recent incident of fire on the Butcher island. The difference between the day (hot) and early morning (cold) is causing the suspended particles to form a dense fog .

Don't know how the situation will be for the next few days with firecrackers adding to the woes. Hopefully a short spell of rain or gusts of wind will improve the situation.
*********
A marked departure that I notice this Diwali is the sudden reduction , almost to the point of absence , of those pseudo-nationalist messages exhorting us to boycott Chinese goods. What an irritant they have been, I say. And to get such messages from those whom you love, adore or respect was more frustrating.
************

Think about this -

First you give your children the most sohphisticated mobile phone with internet and then call the police to save your kids from the blue whale.

And don't be under the false impression that all these things happen to others. We are not like that is just a false belief that you hold.

************ 

I always believed that the term Bong-Bhakts was an oxymoron. 

But now I realise that there are many Bongs who are simply morons.  


Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Synthetic states.

The world remains the same , its geography remains the same but the political map undergoes changes regularly .  If someone compares a hundred year old map of the world ,with the the present one , we will be surprised to note the changes . Even a fifty year old map will show the difference vividly.  Countries are regularly formed  by mergers, integration, conflicts and dissension. Right now we are witnessing the process of Catalonia trying to break free of Spain . Similarly  we also see the decimation of the self styled and short lived  Islamic state of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) .

Often federation of countries, states or nations are formed under a common flag . Sometimes they hold together , sometimes they don't . USSR and Yugoslavia are prime examples of federation countries imploding away ;  many young people don't even know about them. USA  is a shining example of a federation that has held and maybe India too ; though many staunch nationalists will be up in arms against any attempt to term India as a federation, which it actually is .

Apart from the amalgamation and dissolution process by which countries are formed there has been some examples when a country has been formed arbitrarily in a synthetic manner.  By synthetic , I mean a country that was never in existence before as a political, geographical, historical or a linguistic entity.  It does not consider entities like erstwhile Yugoslavia or present day Malaysia, Indonesia etc.  which were formed by union of different states.

The Republic of Liberia  (1847) is perhaps the first synthetic country formed in the modern world . It was  formed by settlers from USA , who were freed black slaves of America or black people born free there. Thus, there was a distinct racial bias in the formation of this country. Later , this formula was tried to create the two most famous example of synthetic states , which were perhaps the biggest blunders (or mischief) by the receding colonial rulers . In 1947 , Pakistan and in 1948 , Israel  were formed on the basis of religion . The formation of both the countries witnessed mass scale migration of two types never seen before.

Jews from all over the world left their countries of abode to congregate and build the new country of Israel. The birth of Pakistan saw the biggest transfer of population in the history of mankind accompanied with brutal rioting . Pakistan was a more complex idea because it comprised of  two landmasses  separated by about 2000 km. Later , East Pakistan became another country -Bangladesh , in 1971,  on the back of an uprising that had linguistic considerations at its core.

Liberia has survived , only to be ravaged by mis-governance and  bouts of army rule , so typical of African countries. Israel has proved to be a success story as a nation that has held itself against multiple hostile neighbors , wars and constant threat . But its very existence  is always beset with problems and a source of continuous instability in the neighborhood. Pakistan has traveled a tortuous path  alternating between democracy and military rule and beset with myriad problems of which terrorism is the primary one. Though denigrated by many as a failed state , it still has the potential and basic foundation to be a modern state only if it stops its obsession to be one up on its neighbor India and sectarian politics of hate.

Thankfully , not many experiments of synthetic states have been tried further . Because , in the absence of very strong  bonds of  common heritage, religion or language , it is very difficult to build a nation and survive long.

Vignettes

A small bag of peanuts in my hand
and a floppy hat on my head,
I watch life move by,
sitting alone on this bench by the park.
People pass me walking
or in their scooters and cars
but nobody stops for a moment,
even to look at me; they are all busy.
They do not have time to waste like me,
under a glorious sun with a cool breeze playing.
I watch their serious faces,
lined with deep concerns and feel
the palpable tension that has them in its grip.
Munching my peanuts, I think,
if only for once, some one
among these passersby stop to smile at me
and sit by my side, speak to me,
or just asks me – How do you do?
How lovely it would be, for the person
and also to me, to talk about the morning,
share the peanuts and may be also walk up
to the nearby tea stall  to sip tea
under this glorious sun with a cool breeze playing.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Waiting for another stampede.

Waiting for another stampede

Today as I was coming back home in the evening , it was raining . The crowd and the jostling at the entrance of the Currey Road station reminded me of the Elphinstone stampede. What happened on the fateful morning of 29th September 2017 at Elphinstone station could have happened at other stations too. I was myself at the next station Currey Road during the time of the tragedy which killed 22 lives in a stampede. And I can visualise and fully understand how things went wrong at Elphinstone as I had regularly used the footbridge at the adjoinining Parel station. That makes me write about a greater danger lurking and another tragedy waiting to happen, any day, at the Currey Road station.

Currey Road Railway Station is a suburban station in Mumbai which lies on the Central Line, i.e. the Central Railways. It was named after C. Currey, who was the Agent of the BB&CI Railway from 1865 to 1875.This station is said to have been built originally to carry horses during the derby season from stud farms in Pune, in the British era, because of its proximity to the Mahalaxmi race course.   The prominent areas served by this station on the west is Lower Parel and on the east, Lal Baugh.  The two other stations which are next to it are Parel on the North, towards Thane and Chinchpokli on the south, towards CSTM.

Once upon a time, the area around Parel or for that matter between Dadar to Byculla was the hub of trading and industrial activity in Mumbai, particularly by the textile mills. As a corollary, the area around Lower Parel was also dotted with labour barracks, commonly known as Chawls.   All these mills are now closed and the properties owned by many well known industry houses have come up for redevelopment, a euphemism for construction of multi-storeyed buildings on prime property. Many of the chawls are also being redeveloped. It’s a huge creamy cake set up to gobble and the involvement of politicians, builders, goons, financiers and sundry middlemen can only be left to imagination. The whole area is a study in contrast with tall glass panelled structures standing like islands in a sea of old buildings and a heavily congested area. And the construction activity continues.

As the middle class and the working class people of Mumbai increases every year, the city has expanded mainly towards the north and east (Navi Mumbai) because the south and west are bound by the sea. The main commercial centre of the city which was at the southern part, around Fort and Nariman point started getting too far off for the daily commuters. As a result, the business district and commercial centres stared relocating to the Bandra Kurla Complex. But the BKC was not enough to accommodate all the offices. And along with that the Parel area, with its obvious connectivity and available space was tempting for the real estate lobby.  Within the last two decades huge multi-storeyed buildings housing residential and office complexes have come up in this area, mostly on the properties, once synonymous with textile mills.

The area is well connected, in a way, by roads and also by railways. Both the Western and the Central lines pass through this area and the Harbour branch line is also within two kms. The stations of Lower Parel and Elphinstone Road on the western line also serve the daily commuters along with the other two already mentioned on the Central line. The Elphinstone Road (WR) and Parel (CR) are actually adjacent and connected by a foot over bridge and the distance between Lower Parel (WR) and Currey Road (CR) is less than 250 metres. It is expected that the monorail will also be operational soon, connecting the eastern part of the city to this place. The construction is almost complete and trial runs have also been made. In fact the monorail system will also have two stations in the close vicinity of Currey Road Station.

The passenger footfall at these stations has increased exponentially like the income of the sons of politicians as the number of daily commuters too increased in a viral manner. When these stations were built perhaps nobody gave a thought about the rush of daily commuters that would besiege the stations during the office hours, both incoming and outgoing.  And when the area was being developed, nobody bothered to examine if the existing infrastructure would stand up to the crowd that would ensue. As a result, the stations don’t have proper crowd dispersal facilities and in case of any small disruption, natural or mechanical, there is immediately a build up of chaos due to congestion of traffic and crowds on the streets and the platforms.

Let us focus on Currey Road station. Only slow suburban local trains stop here. The station comprises of a single platform, on both sides of which the trains stop, to and fro. Unlike other stations, it does not have the provision of another spare platform for the adjoining tracks for fast local trains which could stop here, in case of emergency. The cause of grave concern is the way how the crowd dispersal system is designed here. The station itself is built upon stilts of steel and not more spacious than one of the luxurious flats in one of the many high-rise buildings around it. The entry to the station opens on a narrow 3 feet wide footpath on the Currey Road Bridge which is a part of Currey Road itself, now named as Mahadev Palav Marg. It connects the main arterial Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Road on the east to the N M Joshi Marg an important branch road to another arterial road Senapati Bapat Marg on the west.

The platform is at a lower level under the Currey Road Bridge and there is a single inclined ramp about eight feet wide which is the only way to enter and exit from the platform. During the rush hours, hundreds of commuters disembark from the trains, to and fro and have to jostle their way out of or into the platform. The flow of the crowd gets aggregated at the landing space of the station which, in size is less than a drawing room hall in a normal flat. The two ticket counters also open on this space and the people lined up there add up to the crowd and the jostling.  It does not need too much imagination to visualise the chaos which does not end there itself.

The thronging crowd of commuters have to pass the narrow footpath which is barricaded by a strong steel boundary wall  about four feet high to avoid the crowd spilling over on the bridge and the road used by numerous vehicles including motorcycles, cars, buses and trucks. So getting out or entering the station during the rush hours means a brief round of jostling and pushing through a small narrow stretch for about a minute. It should not be a matter of concern for a fit person on a normal day. And the experience is gender neutral; females are also subjected to the same treatment.  But from personal experience, I can say that it can be very irritating and on days when someone is having a weakness or fever it feels harrowing. Now consider the plight of the old, infirm, disabled and pregnant who have to use the station for their daily commute. Further this does not take into account the crowded station or the efforts to catch a train brimming with commuters.

What happened on the fateful morning of 29th September 2017 at Elphinstone station could have happened at Currey Road station too. The morning was bright and sunny to begin with and when I left home around 8.30 a.m. Though there was a weather alert, I did not carry an umbrella because the rainy season had receded and I didn’t want to be burdened with one. Later, I found that almost everybody did so and this was a major reason for the tragedy. May sound strange but that’s a fact.

The residences of people living in Mumbai are broadly categorised according to the suburban railway lines near their homes – Western line, Central line and Harbour line. Nowadays, something called the Trans-harbour line has also come up. So, I live on the Harbour line and my office is adjacent to Currey Road station, on the Central Line.

By the time I got down at Kurla station to change from the Harbour line to the Central line train, the weather had suddenly changed and dark clouds were threatening heavy rains. Even as I boarded my train, it started pouring heavily. As I reached Currey Road station, I was surprised to find the platform filled with people. For a moment, I wondered but then I realised that it was raining heavily and almost nobody carried an umbrella. They were waiting for the rain to subside. But the rain seemed to be incessant and it was pouring mad. People somehow managed to stand on the platform and with passing time the crowd was swelling in number as trains from both sides brought in fresh commuters at the rush hour, all eager and raring to avoid being marked late for attendance.

I had already decided to wait for the rain to stop and saw some of my colleagues also on the platform, stuck up like the hundreds of other people. Everybody was cursing themselves for not bringing an umbrella but the rain was so much copious that it would be of no use. The only way of exit, the inclined ramp was totally filled with people as was the small station floor. People were neither going out to avoid getting drenched in the rain nor allowing others to go out. Even those who were coming in drenched from outside were blocked from doing so.  All in all, it was maddening.

Perhaps, this was the time when the stampede happened at Elphinstone, just two kms away. Why it didn’t happen at Currey road was simply because of the flat surface of the ramp inclined upwards instead of a stairs going down wards. Pushing people up didn’t generate the momentum for a collapse somewhere. Had it been a staircase, I am sure such tragedy would happen at Currey Road station too. And it can happen any day, not necessarily in the rains. During festivals like Ganapati, the chances of a stampede here is very much real.

I have often pointed to this potential of stampede at Currey Road station and Parel station to many and some of them contacted me after the accident and told me – “You said this could happen”. I am not the least happy to have predicted such a tragedy. My heart goes out to the families of those who died. Why I write this is primarily to narrate the reasons leading to the tragedy and the foreboding that it can happen again, anywhere. But is anybody listening?

P.S: I find that the authorities have now posted police with portable loudspeakers managing and directing the crowd at the entrance . But it is useless in the face of a flash mob situation . Hundreds of people trying to enter a narrow gully in the rains . Try to visualise the situation, you will understand.

Monday, 18 September 2017

Random thoughts 18092017

Does it surprise you to find a whole lot of apparently educated , supposedly intelligent and professedly neutral people getting carried away by propaganda and even abetting it by using twisted logic  ? Actually there is no surprise in all this muted support by these I-am-not-a-Bhakt-but types. These people are overwhelmingly from the urban middle-class category .

They feel happy with the grandiose dreams that are being shown to them and they also believe in them . They are also more selfish and eye both the rich and poor with a lot of animosity. But since they need the rich to get the bones from the table , they behave properly and wag their tails dutifully. Occasionally they complain with a whimpering voice to draw attention. But they are very particular about the strays that howl outside. They would never like the strays to enter the beautiful house because that would mean sharing of the bones. So at the behest of their capitalist bosses they bark, growl , chase away the weak pariahs and keep them away, as far as practicable from the gravy train.

And regarding the defence of everything the government does or actually doesn't , please remember that everything has its positives depending how you perceive and argue. It doesn't need great intellectual capacity or the mind of an ideologue to establish the benefit of something gross and unnecessary. Anybody can do that. You need a good propaganda machine to spread the benefits of  even something as unnecessary as snake oil. Don't believe me ? Then please read the next paragraph and tell me .

For example - Open defecation is also good. It helps to supply manure to the soil . This manure helps the grass to grow . That grass nourishes the cows grazing on the fields. Those cows give more milk . That extra milk helps the farmer to earn extra money . That extra money is spent on buying consumer goods. Those goods are sold with applicable GST. That GST goes to the government coffers. This money is spent on repaying loans . That enables us to take new loans to build Bullet trains. ..............

Hope you get the drift. 😑😶