Monthly Archives: May 2010

Wind Of Change


After 18 months in the company, I am on a transition phase. I am moving to a new team. It’s always quite exciting to have a change. After all, I can’t live with same job over and over, again and again, on every following day. If I was happy with that, I would have chosen a  clerical job in a government cadre. But, I am more bearable to changes and this change was welcomed.

The day went on with requesting access to new servers, user roles, etc. Also, heard a lecture by Shashi Tarur on ” Why Nations should pursue Soft Power?”. A very inspiring speech. The way he  showcased India before the world was awesome. His words were simple but elegant. He was a true Indian during the delivery. Saying this, I am not showing any allegiance to his political and off political views or affairs. But, I admire him just for the moment he stood and used his soft skills to prove that India is one of the fastest growing power out there, in all the fieldsl. The words were patriotic and well commenced. Great Work Tarur. The speech could be viewed at “My Awesome India”  blog.

http://myawesomeindia.blogspot.com/2010/05/india-india-india.html

To the end of the day, I had the resolve to work out at gym. The bulging stomach is throwing me concerns. Better late than never. So, a lot left to read before sleep. Cya…

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My Awesome India Launched


I always wished to do something for the country. Being a normal citizen, there is few that could prove significant, but still I was searching for something that is genuine.

And I stuck on the idea of showcasing India facts in the web world. Being a blogger, this is the way for me to volunteer on my patriotic moves. Hence, I launched

My Awesome India

My gentle effort to collect facts that is unique to India and showcase it on my blog is a very long term project. It involves collecting unique facts about india and publishing it for the readers. Over time, I dream this blog to grow as the best repository for the India facts. So, please have a look at it too. It is at its early stages of its life, so, please excuse with the scarcity of contents. I promise, the blog will grow with content day by day.

Social Disaster:Two-year-old who smokes 40 cigarettes


Taking a deep drag on his cigarette while resting on the steering wheel of his truck, he looks like a parody of a middle-aged lorry driver.
But the image covers up a much more disturbing truth: At just the tender age of two, Ardi Rizal’s health has been so ruined by his 40-a-day habit that he now struggles to move by himself.
The four-stone Indonesia toddler is certainly far too unfit to run around with other children – and his condition is  set to rapidly deteriorate.

Truck on bad habits: Ardi Rizal sits smoking on his favourite toy at home in Musi Banyuasin, Indonesia

Truck on bad habits: Ardi Rizal sits smoking on his favourite toy at home in Musi Banyuasin, Indonesia

But, despite local officials’ offer to buy the Rizal family a new car if the boy quits, his parents feel unable to stop him because he throws massive tantrums if they don’t indulge him.
His mother, Diana, 26, wept: ‘He’s totally addicted. If he doesn’t get cigarettes, he gets angry and screams and batters his head against the wall. He tells me he feels dizzy and sick.’
Ardi will smoke only one brand and his habit costs his parents £3.78 a day in Musi Banyuasin, in Indonesia’s South Sumatra province.
But in spite of this, his fishmonger father Mohammed, 30, said: ‘He looks pretty healthy to me. I don’t see the problem.’
Ardi’s youth is the extreme of a disturbing trend. Data from the Central Statistics Agency showed 25 per cent of Indonesian children aged three to 15 have tried cigarettes, with 3.2 per cent of those active smokers.
The percentage of five to nine year olds lighting up increased from 0.4 per cent in 2001 to 2.8 per cent in 2004, the agency reported.

Gun smoke: Four-stone Ardi puffs one of 40 cigarettes he smokes a day while toting a water pistol

Gun smoke: Four-stone Ardi puffs one of 40 cigarettes he smokes a day while toting a water pistol

A video of a four-year-old Indonesian boy blowing smoke rings appeared briefly on YouTube in March, prompting outrage before it was removed from the site.
Child advocates are speaking out about the health damage to children from second-hand smoke, and the growing pressure on them to smoke in a country where one-third of the population uses tobacco and single cigarettes can be bought for a few cents.
Seto Mulyadi, chairman of Indonesia’s child protection commission, blames the increase on aggressive advertising and parents who are smokers.
‘A law to protect children and passive smokers should be introduced immediately in this country,’ he said.
A health law passed in 2009 formally recognizes that smoking is addictive, and an anti-smoking coalition is pushing for tighter restrictions on smoking in public places, advertising bans and bigger health warnings on cigarette packages.

Puff baby: Ardi blows smoke while trundling around on his truck

Puff baby: Ardi blows smoke while trundling around on his truck

But a bill on tobacco control has been stalled because of opposition from the tobacco industry.
The bill would ban cigarette advertising and sponsorship, prohibit smoking in public, and add graphic images to packaging.
Benny Wahyudi, a senior official at the Industry Ministry, said the government had initiated a plan to try to limit the number of smokers, including dropping production to 240 billion cigarettes this year, from 245 billion in 2009.
‘The government is aware of the impact of smoking on health and has taken efforts, including lowering cigarette production, increasing its tax and limiting smoking areas,’ he said.
Mr Mulyadi said a ban on advertising is key to putting the brakes on child and teen smoking.
‘If cigarette advertising is not banned, there will be more kids whose lives are threatened because of smoking,’ he said.
Ubiquitous advertising hit a bump last month when a cigarette company was forced to withdraw its sponsorship of pop star Kelly Clarkson’s concert following protests from fans and anti-tobacco groups.

Always having a break: Ardi, who is rarely seen without a cigarette, insists on the same brand, costing £78 a day

Always having a break: Ardi, who is rarely seen without a cigarette, insists on the same brand, costing £78 a day

However, imposing a non-smoking message will be difficult in Indonesia, the world’s third-largest tobacco consumer.
Tubagus Haryo Karbyanto, a member of the National Commission of Tobacco Control, said Indonesia must also address the social conditions that lead to smoking, such as family influence and peer pressure.
‘The promotion of health has to be integrated down to the smallest units in our society, from public health centres and local health care centres to the family,’ he was quoted as saying by the Jakarta Globe on Friday.
Health Minister Endang Sedyaningsih conceded turning young people off smoking will be difficult in a country where it is perceived as positive because cigarette companies sponsor everything from scholarships to sporting events.
‘This is the challenge we face in protecting youth from the dangers of smoking,’ she said in a statement on the ministry’s website.

kites Day 1 Gross


The marketing blitzkrieg for Kites by Reliance BIG Pictures seems to have paid of with the film grossing Rs 21 crores on opening day in India – the second highest ever in Bollywood (after 3 idiots).

The aggressive promos had already set the temperature soaring for the Rakesh Roshan film starring Hritik Roshan and Barbara Mori making it among most awaited releases of Summer 2010.

“We were very aggressive in our marketing strategy and released the film across 2500 screens in 30 countries. This is the widest release ever for a Bollywood movie. There were 10,000 shows on the opening day, which is also a record,” says Mr Sanjeev Lamba, CEO, Reliance BIG Pictures.

Kites was marketed aggressively worldwide in the run-up to the release and created a lot of excitement and curiosity. The film grossed over Rs 21 crores on the opening day, the second highest opening in India ever and is expected to have a bumper weekend.

The film has done well overseas too, and opened to full houses. The international version of Kites – Kites Remix – is being presented by Hollywood director Brett Ratner of X-Men and Rush Hour 3 fame. The film will open worldwide next Friday.

Source: Economic Times

Mangalore Crash : 160 dead


A Dubai – Mangalore Air India flight crashed at the Bajpe Airport about 30 kilometres from Mangalore. About 168 passengers were on board, 160 of them have reportedly died after the plane overshot the runway and burst into flames. 6 passengers have survived the crash and have been admitted to the nearby A.J Hospital.

Heartfelt condolences from me to the families of those affected by this tragic incident. May the souls of all those who died rest in peace.

Update: There were 139 adults, 19 children and 4 new born babies were on board.

Update : Helpline numbers – 0824-2220422 (Airport) 011-25656196 (Air India Delhi)

More Numbers – 0824 – 2010167 (Mangalore) 011 – 25603101 (Delhi) 080 – 66785172 (Bangalore)

Wet Drives on a Monsoon Morning


The sky in Trivandrum is getting cloudy. Another monsoon on the limelight, and the day ahead promises a lot of  wet muddy roads, pools in the miniature pot holes and cloudy noisy nights with rain  rattling against the window panes. The sun has been angry for last couple of months. The unbearable heat took the toll right from the morning to late night. High humidity added to the discomfort and the broken sleeps. Amidst of all these, the  rains are a boon. Moreover, rains in the city raises a lot of nostalgic memories.

I got the first taste of this monsoon, when I wake up in the morning, with the wind blowing the curtains up and the drops of rain rushing into my room. Ever since, the heat became unbearable at night, I had the habit of leaving a window open. That welcomed the rain to my room. When I started for the office early morning, the sky was cloud laden. The rain clouds filled the horizon and promised me a wet day. And wet indeed. The drive to the office had my wiper of the car working hard to keep my view intact. After quite a couple of months, I had a cold morning, surely relieving, I must say.

Rains always had a part in the life of people around here, especially for me. In my school days, the opening ceremony of school after the summer breaks are always accompanied by monsoons. The child’s heart after a long vacation and back to school benches are reflected in the dark frowning sky. But, the lightning of smiles when friends gang regroups are much to a relief for the year ahead. The morning rain took me back to those old memories.

Though, the rains are bringing back sweet memories, it is also posing a dangerous outrage in southern states of India. Right now, I read news that, the storm in Andhra Pradesh is getting stronger and the winds are blowing at a brisk rate of 120 Km/hr. Really outrageous. Last time, when monsoons devastated the South Asian region was when Tsunami stuck. I hope, this year the monsoon goes away sweetly.

Driving through the Highway


A car of my own was my dream. And today, I am living in that dream.So, with wheels with hands, I would love an opportunity to turn it and yesterday it was indeed an opportunity. I had to do a transporter job, oh well,not a Jason Stathom kind of, but a cross state cruise for my wife to attend her friend’s marriage. For me, it was an excuse to pedal the accelerator.

To my inner soul, I enjoyed this drive. The previous time, I went through the same route, I was accompanied by my cousin brother, who was a very good driver. At that time, I was new to my car and very scared  or doubtful at each corner. But today was different. I enjoyed flowing through the traffic, smoking the engine at empty straight stretches and chattering with my wife, who can chit chat for hours non stop.