Archive for April, 2009

Pune Votes, Tomorrow

Posted in Musings, Politics with tags , , , , , on April 22, 2009 by samudranb

So tomorrow is the day I exercise my right to vote. The day i participate in the biggest democratic process in the world. The day I decide the fate of some 36 candidates in my constituency.

The day I count as much as the illiterate-beggar-drunkard-wife beater-thief-smuggler-rapist-murderer standing next to me in the line.

I have not yet decided who I will vote for. I do not think the candidates themselves matter much anyways. They will hardly do anything to significantly improve the Pune constituency. But the parties they belong to, and the strength they will be having, that will surely matter in the topics that are most likely to affect the country at large.

The 3 major parties in the fray, Congress, BJP and the BSP have fielded candidates who are what you expect them to be. Projected as clean, austere and the best thing to happen to Pune since mankind invented the wheel. I cannot even recall who is from which party. They all look and sound the same. All promise to improve Pune’s roads, water supply, transport system, etc etc etc.

Surprisingly, nobody mentioned anything about corruption. Hmm. I wonder why.

To be fair, I did not attend any of their public rallies. I have only had time to go to their respective sites, and read their manifestos.The BJP candidate (Anil Shirole)’s site is “Under construction”. However, the Sakaal Times seems to carry quite a few articles about him and his pet peeve – Pune’s transport system. The “development” of which, quite obviously, offers tremendous scope for more corruption. The BSP’s candidate (DSK) seems to be quite lost. His manifesto is plagued with structural and grammatical errors, not to mention factual fallacies. The Congress candidate, Mr. Suresh Kalmadi, seems to have done a bit for the slum rehabiliation. But then, I did not like the way he has taken credit for many things, over which I believe he had not even a semblance of control. Including, but not limited to, how “as IOA President, got the country the 1st ever gold medal in individual event at the Beijing Olympic 2008.” Seems so honest and accurate, no?

Amongst the independents/smaller parties, I came across only one profile which caught my attention. Arun Bhatia from Peoples Guardian. A former municipal commissioner of Pune, who has been “transferred 26 times in 26 years” because of his inadequacy to keep quiet. Given “punishment postings”. Threatened.

His life story seems like a good story for a Bollywood movie.

But then, how much can 1 man do?

Tomorrow, I count as much as the illiterate-beggar-drunkard-wife beater-thief-smuggler-rapist-murderer standing next to me in the line.


There will be time, there will be time

Posted in Musings, Politics with tags , , , on April 16, 2009 by samudranb

And indeed there will be time
For the yellow smoke that slides along the street,
Rubbing its back upon the window-panes;
There will be time, there will be time
To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;
There will be time to murder and create,
And time for all the works and days of hands
That lift and drop a question on your plate;
Time for you and time for me,
And time yet for a hundred indecisions,
And for a hundred visions and revisions,
Before the taking of a toast and tea.

T.S. Eliot ( The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock )

There will be a time, soon, when the Great Indian Tamasha will no longer be about vote banks and vote buying. Murders and rapes. Intimidators and the intimidated.

When it will be about people making informed choices about the way they want to be governed. Which to me, means less and less of governance, and more and more of self-reliance. Less of rules, more of rights AND responsibilities.

Less of clowns looking to ban anything they don’t understand, as a solution to problems they don’t understand, created because of following policies they don’t understand. And more of debates about these issues.

Huh? Who? Where? Whadda…?! Oh… i must have fallen asleep.

You Too Starting Ze Blogz?

Posted in About me, Musings, Politics with tags , , on April 15, 2009 by samudranb

Why am i starting a blog?

Well, for starters, this seems to be the final frontier when it comes to freedom of speech. All other media are apparently faced with some form of restriction or the other, whether self-imposed or not. Even governments / government institutions pretending to keep the “public’s best interest” at heart, put restrictions on our freedom of speech.

Besides, anything as entertaining as the upcoming elections in “the world’s biggest democracy” can hardly be ignored/not commented upon! Like the millions of educated brainwashed Indians, I too believe that my word truly has some worth. That I too shall make a difference. That my vote too counts. That there are honest politicians still alive in some corner somewhere. That India too will change. That we will script the changes.

(Cue “Hum honge kaamyaab… hum honge kaamyaab… hum honge kaamyaab… EK DINNN…”)

I am actually not that pessimistic in real life… Those of you who know me, would probably describe me as a fun-loving guy who gets bored too easily. “Restless” is the word I would use. Also, “hungry”.

This blog is also supposed to be my attempt at chronicling the life and times of the Great <insert any of my 27 nicknames here>. Otherwise, when I sit down to pen my memoirs, it will probably contain only 2 days worth of memories. (I have activated the auto-delete feature on my memory. What?? You don’t have it?? Tsk tsk… it only comes with the latest models… go get yours upgraded!)

I got to go now. I dont remember why.