Sunday, August 11, 2013

Indian politics, corruption, states, etc.

Corruption has spread its wings in never-heard-before things. Most of us were totally oblivious to the fact that corruption exists in a thing like sand mining. Kudos to Durga Shakti Nagpal for exposing the nexus between sand mafia and politicians. Suspending her was probably the worst decision taken by the UP government. It has only given her more power for the right cause with media, people of the country, and even the central government on her side now. People of UP had great hopes when a young Akhilesh Yadav took the reigns of the state government from look-I'm-a-rich-dalit Mayawati. People saw a fresh hope of a criminal-free, corruption-free state in their young CM. However, he seems to have completely failed the plot. In only one year, he doesn't seem to be any different from his father Mulayam Singh Yadav or any other UP politician for that matter. Hope he brings his young age to good use by bringing positive governance in the state for the rest of his tenure.

With the Lok Sabha elections round the corner, Indian politics is getting interesting. Congress has almost ruled itself out with anti-incumbency factor riding highly against them (not to forget the numerous scams and flawed economic policies during their tenure). BJP is relying highly on Modi and he is leaving no stone unturned when it comes to marketing himself. On the face of it, Modi is looking very promising to the youth. There is kind of a cult of Modi supporters in the social networking arena. But I only hope that he is much more than the claims made by the PR agency that he has hired (Washington based firm, Apco Worldwide, handles PR for Modi for 25,000 USD per month and has been known for doing the same for a few infamous people). I feel sad that most of the educated youth has gotten into thinking that Modi will solve all their problems like a magician. A similar hype was created for Obama in the US and we have seen the outcome. Excessive hype is never good. I think it is high time we understand that India's problems aren't too naive to be solved by a single person. The next Lok Sabha is inching towards an unstable coalition government with third and even fourth fronts playing kingmakers, which is probably the worst we can hope for. Hope India gets a single-party, stable government in her 16th Lok Sabha.

After a lot of hullaballoo for many years, Telangana is finally slated to become a separate state (29th state of India), leaving Hyderabad in a dangling situation for a few years. Now, demands for other separate states have gained momentum after Telangana. In my opinion, India does have a potential of having 50 states, but separate states have to make a geographical and economical sense, not just political!

No nation is perfect, it needs to be made perfect. Wishing you all a very happy Independence Day in advance!

Friday, March 22, 2013

My first 'Last day'

People talk about their first love, first job, first crush, first salary all the time. Well, for a change, let's talk about the first 'Last day at work'. Today is my last day at my first job. Last day at work can be as eventful as the first day - exit interview, last day email, formalities, surrendering the office paraphernalia, bidding adieu to colleagues, to name a few. Leaving a job for the very first time in my life, I'm having mixed feelings. While I'm sad about leaving this wonderful place, I'm equally excited about the new opportunity.

As I introspect my stay in my very first company, I definitely had a fantastic time here. I got to be a part of one of the leaders in the IT industry. I got to work closely with some of the brightest folks in this industry. I got to work in an area which is selling like hot cakes in today's world. I got enough opportunities to enhance my skills and expertise. I got to work under one of the best managers who gave me enough support and freedom to enjoy my work. I got appreciation when I did something good and I also got beatings on my mistakes, making me better at my job every single time. I got to work with people from all across the globe. I made a lot of friends with whom I wish to keep in touch even after leaving this place. We worked hard and partied harder. I never had Monday morning blues and that, I think, sums it all up. If I look back to my very first day at work, I feel, I have turned from a naive college grad to a disciplined and a mature corporate individual. 

If I were to summarize my lessons in this job, here are the top 6 things that come to my mind:

1. It's not just your technical knowledge that's going to make you successful in your job. A lot also depends on your attitude, interpersonal skills, team work, motivation, humility, and your ability to handle criticism.

2. Don't make enemies and don't burn bridges. You never know when you will need the other person's help. So, keep your ego at bay next time you disagree with someone.

3. Don't reveal more than what's required. Learn to keep secrets. There's a lot of sensitive information flowing around in the corporate world and spreading it might put you and others in harm's way.

4. Share your knowledge with others. Not only will that make things clearer to you, but will also make others open up when you have something to ask. Seek help from others when required without hesitation.

5. You will find a lot of negativity around you. Don't let that hamper your work. If you are not happy about something, speak out and try your best to rectify the problem. If things still don't work out, move on rather than spreading more negativity.

6. Speak up what you want. People are busy. So, don't assume that things will be done for you by others. Say what you want clearly and keep following up until closure.

With all these great lessons and wonderful experiences, I conclude my first 'last day' and look forward to my second 'first day' at work.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Common English Grammar mistakes

I have a keen interest in English grammar, grammar of any language for that matter. Following is a list of a few English grammar mistakes that I usually come across, some of which even I make sometimes. I plan to update this list as and when I come across more of these. Feel free to add to the list, especially anything that you spot on this blog :-)

1. Incorrect: he didn't came; did you went?
Correct: he didn't come; did you go?
The tense is carried by the auxiliary verb 'do' -- not by the main verb.

2. When used as an adverb, 'maybe' is a single word meaning 'perhaps'. When used as two separate words, 'may be' is a verb phrase showing possibility. For example, he may be creative or maybe he is just crazy.

3. 'cannot' is a single word. Its shortened form "can't" is also correct. However, writing it as two separate words 'can not' is incorrect.

4. 'up to' should always be two words. There is no word called 'upto'.

5. The adverb sometime (one word) means "at an indefinite or unstated time in the future." For example, visit our place sometime.
The phrase some time (two words) means "a period of time." For example, give me some time to think.
The adverb sometimes (one word) means "occasionally, now and then." For example, sometimes I get confused.

6. The possessive form of a plural word ending in 's' is formed by just appending the apostrophe in the ending 's'. For example, classes' opinions, boys' clothes, etc. The possessive form of a singular word ending in 's' is, however, formed by appending the apostrophe and another 's' in the ending 's'. For example, class's opinion, boss's treat, etc.

7. It's is a contraction for it is or it has. For example, It's a bird, It's been good to know you, etc.
Its is a possessive pronoun meaning, more or less, of it or belonging to it. For example, The bird is known for its ability to fly, It has its own place, etc.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Of Race, Rape, and Republic

  1. Lance Armstrong has been in news for being stripped of all his Tour de France titles and being banned from cycling for life due to doping allegations. A few days back, he admitted doping in a "no-holds barred" interview with Oprah Winfrey. This news came in as a shocker to millions of his fans throughout the world and there has been a wave of anger, disappointment, and disgrace about him since then. I too have been a huge of his, especially after reading his novel "It's not about the bike" - one of my all-time favorites. I feel sad about him and did not expect his dream career to see this end. However, I liked the fact that he had the guts to admit it all and apologize to people openly. Though this doping news makes his fight against stage-three cancer a little less illustrative, I still think it was a phenomenal battle. I wish to see him doing something remarkably good  for the society in the days to come.
  2. The Delhi rape case has been in news for quite some time now. This has been one of the few cases where the media and the people haven't lost steam easily and have been following it up very closely. I think the sheer gruesomeness of this crime easily justifies the public anger and demand for the strictest punishment to the guilty. I feel that some of the positives that came out of this case such as public agitation and media attention urging the government to take faster steps to bring the guilty to book, steps being taken for making our country a safer place for women, public debates on critical issue like death penalty and juvenile justice act, and the potential amendments in rape laws would definitely help the girl's soul rest in peace.
  3. Today, India celebrates her 64th Republic Day. I wish to see a resurgent, crime-free, and empowered India in the days to come.