Sunday, December 26, 2010

Punjab or Panjab

'पापा ये स्पेलिंग गलत है' (this spelling is wrong papa). 
My ten year old daughter was questioning me when I wrote Panjab University in my diary.
'ये Punjab होना चाहिए, Panjab नहीं' 
I told her, Panjab is correct as the university is using it.  She shrugged her shoulders as she was not at all convinced.  She has been reading in her books the spelling as Punjab and not Panjab.  I also thought for a while and agreed at the back of my mind that yes she is right, but I also knew that the university writes it as Panjab and may be officially the name of the state is accepted as Punjab so that way Punjab should be correct spelling.
We have been discussing the issue of ethics, values and morality.  The debate and discussion on what is right and what is wrong, what is correct and what is incorrect, has been very interesting in last two days.  But my daughter's question kept me thinking and I was following the pronunciation of people vigilantly. 
I in fact never questioned Punjab or Panjab as it is written, so is accepted. But there seemed something more than that.
While I was attending a session on the Praxis of Spirituality at Work Place, I was observing the speaker, Prof Satinder K Dhiman who at present work at Woodbury Univ, CA, USA, who is an alumnus of UBS and belong to this region, was pronouncing 'success', as 'sukses' (सुक्सेस) instead of 'sakses' (सक्सेस) I try understanding the pronunciation of U which seemed it is pronounced as U in Panjab or in this region, or people belonging to this region are brought up to pronounce like this.  I have seen many others as well pronouncing like this.  Further when I use logic, I feel had it been really Punjab, it should have been pronounced as 'Punjaab' (पुंजाब) and not Panjab (पंजाब).    
I am able to understand little, correctly it should be Panjab and not Punjab if one traces the linguistic relation.  Most probably, it is same old thing as in case of many other places and locations in India.  I am told it is basically English people who are the culprit (British) who englicised Panjab and made it Punjab and as we took all other names as british legacy, so is this name.  Nice that the university name is still Panjab, which was established in 1882 in erstwhile Lahore.  Further I am happy that people keep pronouncing it the way it should be, what is correct is correct, however way we pronounce it.  
All my friends in Panjab and the civil society along with the press has to raise this issue of correcting the spellling  of Punjab to Panjab.  Otherwise my daughter shall remain bewildered on what is right what is wrong and she may not buy my Shakespearean defense...what is in a call rose by any name..rose remains rose.

Friday, October 15, 2010

XIX Commonwealth Games - Delhi 2010 - 3-14 Oct 2010

Yesterday we watched the closing ceremony of the XIX CWG held at JN Stadium, New Delhi.  I had watched the opening ceremony at Mr Manoj Sharma's place, while I was in Delhi.  India performed its best so far in all the CWGs held so far bagging 101 medals in total which included 38 gold and made its position at second just after Australia and above England.  Indian sportpersons performed their best with true spirit of a good  sportsmanship.  In total, though Commonwealth has 54 nations, 71 nations participated as 17 nations sought permission and also became part of the total participants, though they had not been under the colony of England.  Next games are going to be held at Scotland in 2014.

However the organizing CWG has been a point of discussion since last many years and more so in last few months.  I got reminded of Asiad 82 which was also under controversies amid leadership of Mr Buta Singh, then chairman of Organizing committee of the games.  That was the time when color TV was launched in India and every businessman wanted to have a TV shop, looking at the great opportunity.  The organizing committee of  CWG 2010 was headed by Mr Suresh Kalmadi, a sitting MP from Congress.  I heard his speech on the opening day and yesterday.  Yesterday's speech was a full-flop.  As a chairman of the organizing committee he thanked all his counterparts including the PM, CM, Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi.  What about the people coming from 70 different nations.  He thanked his own people which was too bad and childish.

I shall like to raise certain issues related to CWG, Delhi 2010.

First, do we really need to be part of such an event which marks the togetherness of all the colonial nations which have once been under colony of British rule.  We are living in totally different world but still continue to recognize and respect the colonial mindset.  We need to think over it.

Two, we need to learn lessons from the nations which though having been under colony do not participate in the games.

Three, as a country, for India, was it proper to host such a mega event and that too at a place like Delhi.  A nation which has more than 30% of its population living below poverty line, such an extravaganza is really worth.  We need to do some cost benefit analysis over this.

Four, the proposed budget is said to be Rs 500 crore and in reality it has crossed Rs 70,000 crore (as per media reports), is it really worth spending such an amount for such an event.

Five, as reported there have been lot of corruption issues, as the games are over now and India having performed its best, are we really going to forget the corrupt people involved in the process on the excuse of India's performance.

Six, the organising committee spent Rs 5 crore on the song for the CWG composed by AR Rehman, is it really worth.

Sports, music and art bind people together. Hence we need to promote sports culture, but we need to keep reminding ourselves of our limitations and of course strengths.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Sustainability of MALLs in India

25th Sept 2010/Saturday////8:25 pm/Defence Colony, Gurgaon/

I am back to Ashutosh’s place after a visit to Metro Mall. We were five of us, me, ashutosh dash, and three of his old students from IIM Shillong. We had lunch together at MDI and thenafter came to his house, had tea etc,,, and then after walking for around 400 mtrs boarded an auto which dropped us at the Mall.

The mall looked good, crowded by people, being a Saturday, a weekend, may be the crowd is still bigger, and today is World Daughters Day, a day which I never was aware of. As we walked through the mall looking at different showrooms, looking at people, couples of different ages, kids, safaiwalas etc, we followed the escalators and behaved perfectly like young kids who play with escalators taking a ride up and down. All through we kept talking to each other and tried relating our knowledge of books and business with what we were looking at. We reached on the top and tried to see which are the movies on show at the PVR, Dabbang, Paa, 3 idiots, etc etc… and decided not to go for any of them. Following through the lobby, we crossed the food outlets of different prominent brands (McDonald, Subway…) as well as of the brands I never had heard of. We were in no mood to have anything at the time, so we decided to come down and now floor wise walking started. Good looking showrooms seated with good looking sales personnels but many of them without a single customer. We started talking amongst us why people don’t enter these showrooms, why only at PVR and at Food stalls and at some popular brands like Bata, Colorplus, some toys shops, etc there is rush whereas most of the shops are without any customer, mind it, it is a weekend. I start thinking and sharing that thinking with others in the company, that how these showrooms/shops are sustaining, why the number of malls keep increasing, people visiting malls also increasing, still much of the people visiting don’t buy anything.

I am given another education that the rush in the first week of the month is much larger as compared to the last week of the month. During the discount sales, which usually happens to be during Dec-Jan, many of these outlets sell huge volume to cover up the slump in the other months. Does it really happen that way, I wonder.

Some say, do you see that lady sitting at the counter, she has been awarded this shop by her husband, because she is giving tough time to her husband so he thought this is the best place for her to spend time. Some say, this is how the black money is becoming white, though they do not sell well, still they keep issuing fake cash memos etc etc to convert the black color with white. I find it interesting, what a way for color transformation. But a question comes to my mind, there are so many big brands being at display in the mall, they must be paying really through their nose to use this property for their display, but all these marketing efforts, are they able to get converted into sales.

Most of the sales people in the mall are looking at their prey, their eyes are so expecting that after experiencing this day in, day out they have become use to it. They are having wrinkles on their face; after all they have all been smilingly waiting for the prospective customers. They seem very courteous, I know they are not meaning it but their persistent waiting habit has made them so. I find many aged ladies at the cash counters… reason, I can not speculate. Many of the front line sales people are involved in cleaning the items or counters, some are enjoying the tones of instrumentals being played within the showroom.

There is good rush on the ground floor, of the kids, children, especially girls who are involved in dancing and celebrating Daughters Day, a relief to some parents, some companies are busy capitalizing this opportunity. We decide, now we can again go back to the food counter on the top floor as now the appetite for some drinks is made as we have already strolled more than 2000 metres, escalating up starts and ends at the destination where we take drinks as per our choice, I am provided with Ice Tea and now we chat on different issues, shillong, education, children, girls, relationship, work-life balance, life satisfaction, job satisfaction etc etc…. I preach one needs to enjoy every moment of life as it comes. Work is important but it is not only work which is important as we always say, money is important but it is not just money which is important. We do not need to get into work so much that we miss life but pat comes an argument, if work is life then what, I don’t have any answer to that, I lost all my wisdom, all my arguments fall short of justification. Yes I do believe strongly, work is worship but worship is not all that we need to do all through life.

After finishing tea and spending time on the square table, we agree to get back to the exit of the Mall and we make our way through, three of them take Metro train to their destination, me and ashutosh decide to take an auto back to Iffco chowk and then we walk through lanes to his house, talking different shades of relationship, giving and providing space to others, one does it for oneself, not for anybody else, one needs to live in this belief, otherwise relationships leave us with the feeling of sand just making its way through a close palm. What an idea sirji…

9:15 pm///

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

हिंदी दिवस - १४ सितम्बर २०१०

आज के दिन वर्ष १९४९ को भारतीय संविधान ने हिंदी को राज भाषा घोषित किया.  तब से आज तक हम हिंदी को अपनी राष्ट्रभाषा मानते आये हैं.  मुझे अपने हिंदी भाषी होने पर गर्व है क्योंकि यह मेरी राष्ट्रभाषा के साथ साथ मात्रभाषा भी है.  पिछले ६१ वर्षों मे हिंदी ने अपने भिन्न रूप देखे हैं और आज इस बाजारी युग मे भी वह अपनी पहचान बनाने मे काफी सक्षम रही है.  हाँ यह बात अवश्य है कि जिस प्रकार से अंग्रेजी ने अपना मुकाम हमारे व्यवहार मे बनाया है, हिंदी कहीं उससे पीछे खड़ी प्रतीत होती है, यह एक शर्म की बात तो है परन्तु कहीं ना कहीं इसके लिए हिंदी स्वयं या उसके जानने वाले, उसका प्रचार-प्रसार करने वाले, साहित्यकार, आदि जिम्मेदार हैं.  जिस प्रकार से हिंदी के संस्थानों मे राजनीति ने अपनी पैठ बनायीं है उससे यह कह पाना बहुत मुश्किल है कि हिंदी के प्रचार-प्रसार मे लगे यह तथाकथित सरोकारी अपने आशय मे कितने इमानदार रहे हैं या रहेंगे.
आज भिन्न विषयों का साहित्य हिंदी भाषा मे उपलब्ध नहीं है, और यदि है भी तो उसका स्तर काफी गिरा हुआ है.  आवयश्कता इस बात की है कि हिंदी मे अधिक से अधिक अनुवाद हों और हर विषय मे हिंदी माध्यम की पुस्तकें उपलब्ध रहें जिससे इस अभाव को दूर किया जा सके.  इस कार्य हेतु हम सभी को आपस मे इमानदारी से कार्य करना होगा.....

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Janmashtmi 2010 - Maiyaa mori, main Nahi Makhan Khayo

Today is Janmashtmi (Birthday of Lord Krishn) and I am reminded of this great devotional song composed by Surdas (great worshiper of Lord Krishn).  I would like to share these lyrics with all my friends. Though these words reflect on different shades of Bal Krishn's behaviour, these are still relevant and we at times behave the same way, we are honest, we lie, we defy, we pretend, we reject, we accept, we....

Enjoy the lyrics:

Maiyaa mori, main Nahi Makhan Khayo

Bhor bhayo gaiyan ke paache, Madhuvan mohi pathayo .
chaar prahar vanshivat bhatakyo, saanj pare ghar aayo ..
.. Maiya Mori .......... 1 ..

main baalak bahiyan ko choto, chinko kidi vidhi payo .
gwaal baal sab bair pare hain, barbas mukh laptayo ..
.. Maiya Mori .......... 2 ..

Tu janani man kii ati mori, inke kahe patiyaayo .
Jiya tete kachu bhed upjihai, jaani parayo jaayo ..
.. Maiya Mori .......... 3 ..

yaha le apani lakuti kambaliyaa, bahutahi naach nachaayo .
Jiya tete kachu bhed upjihai, jaani parayo jaayo ..
"Surdas" tab hanshi Yashodaa, lai ur-kanth lagaayo ..
.. Maiya Mori .......... 4 ..

Hindi version
मैया मोरी, मैं नही माखन खायो

भोर भयो गैयन के पाछे, मधुवन मोहि पठायो ।
चार पहर वंशीवट भटक्यो, सांझ परे घर आयो ॥
॥ मैया मोरी .......... १ ॥

मैं बालक बहियन को छोटो, छींको किहि विधि पायो .
ग्वाल-बाल सब बैर परे हैं, बरबस मुख लपटायो ..
॥ मैया मोरी .......... २ ॥

तू जननी मन की अति भोली, इनके कहे पतियायो .
यह ले अपनी लकुटि कम्बलिया, तुने बहुतहि नाच नचायो .
॥ मैया मोरी .......... ३ ॥

जिय तेते कछु भेद उपजिहै , जानि परायो जायो ..
"सूरदास" तब हँसी यशोदा, लै उर-कंठ लगायो ..
॥ मैया मोरी .......... ४ ॥

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Importance of Three...

Shillong - 8th June 2010

THREE is an important number.  It is inauspicious in many religions.  It is odd whole number.  It is a natural number as well.  Just a day back I started reading 3 mistakes of may life by Chetan Bhagat.  It has been in the shelf for few months since I bought and every time I looked at the shelf, I heard a call from 3 mistakes, I attended to this call just on this Sunday. I shall write about the book once I am through with it, for the moment let me talk about numbers. One, Two, Three, Four, Five..... nth

Three is an important number. We have grown with a nursery rhyme -

Baa baa black sheep, have you any wool?
Yes sir, yes sir, THREE bags full!
One for the master, one for the dame,
And one for the little boy who lives down the lane. 

Why the poet s so concerned with only three bags, could be two or four, may be 3 is not more, and 3 is not less as well.  Of course it is relative.  It seems an Ideal number.  We are just three of us in the family, Me, my wife and my daughter, so for me three is ideal.  So three remains an important number.  We had a all time bollywood hit movie 3 idiots which showed its presence quite remarkably in the recently held AIFA award ceremony.  There was another hindi movie Teen Patti - starring Amitabh Bachchan which did not do well at the box office.

Three monkeys of Mahatma Gandhi are also quite famous -
hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil

There must have been something phenomenal in the number 3 that Gandhiji only thought of 3 monkeys, otherwise there are so many NOs that we should follow and most important of all is DO NO EVIL. But seems that too many is also not good and too less as well. So he decided Three.

At the present situation in our university, the power of three is felt by everybody, there are three committees, three persons and three propositions.  Do we have three mistakes, three monkeys, three idiots, three bags full, one for master, another for dame and another for friend, or do we need to sing another nursery rhyme...

Johnny Johnny  Yes Papa, 
Eating sugar?  No Papa, 
Telling lies?  No Papa 
Open your mouth  O Ha! Ha! Ha!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Decision on Bhopal Tragedy

I learn that the culprit, Anderson (then chief of United Carbide) who was put behind bars on non-bailable offence, was provided a smooth passage to move to America by the then government officials.  Both at the centre and the state (MP), congress was ruling.  As things are getting open like the peel of the onion, it is exposing many of the politicians of their intention, integrity and inconsistency. 
These politicians when murdered or attacked by their own people (may be body guards or others), the nation cries, it becomes a national grief, but may be these attackers know their master better than the common mass.  We should not complain.  We get what we deserve, they get what they deserve...

Current Census

There has been a debate on the caste/religion/ethnicity based census.  There have been points and counterpoints.  My view is that the census should be of the human beings not of anyone else.  My belonging to a caste is immaterial if I remain a good human being.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Death of John Sheppard-Barron - Inventor of ATM

It is sad to know about the demise of John Sheppard Barron who invented Automated Teller Machine (ATMs) in 1960s. It is interesting to know that he was born in Shillong as quoted by the Shillong Times (English Daily) on 24th May 2010, page 3 under Shillong Jottings.  It read as -

ATM inventor John Sheppard-Barron died recently at the age of 84. Though his death may not be a matter of great loss for us here in Shillong, it is interesting to know that this great soul was actually born here. His Scottish father was the chief engineer of Chittagong Port Commissioners while his mother was a tennis player. He got the idea of a cash dispenser while lying in his bath after finding his bank closed in 1965. That’s how the ATM was conceived. And indeed it is one of the greatest inventions of all times. Thanks to the ATM, today we do not need to carry cash around even while travelling. It is easier to draw smaller amounts from ATMs and deal with our purchases. Moreover, ATM cards are today accepted as legal tender in most stores. Humankind has indeed come a long way from the days of bartering.

May his soul rests in peace.... Shillong is really a Scotland of the East...

Sunday, May 16, 2010

My Manipur Diary

It was a learning experience visiting Manipur during 10-12 May 2010.  Thanks to Rajmani who could make my maiden visit possible to Imphal (Manipur).  I was skeptical after receiving the invitation whether should I go or leave it as Manipur is one of the most disturbed state in India and so much so for the North-East India.  There have been militants' attack and agitations against the government as well as the military setup specially on the Assam Rifles.  There have been cases of innocent killings by Assam Rifles which has instigated the public to go against this force.
Recently NSCN leader Muivah's visit has been the issue of distress and disturbance in Manipur.  Muivah, a known NSCN leader who had talks with the union home minister (P Chidambaram) and other inportant leaders in New Delhi, who agreed and allowed him to visit his home village situated in a district called Ukhrool in Manipur.  The demands of NSCN have been primarily establishment of greater Nagaland which should expand present Nagaland to the territory of Manipur and Assam where Naga tribe people reside and secession from India resulting in full sovereignty to Nagaland.  Muivah has strong followers base in Nagaland as well as all the areas where Nagas reside.  The home minister while allowing him to visit his hometown did not take Manipur Government into confidence which claims that Muivah's visit is not just a visit of a person to his village but it is to do with series of meetings with the activists as well as people for the cause of Greater Nagaland, which Manipur would never like.
Having green signal from the central government, Muivah tried entering Manipur through NH 40 which connects Dimapur and Imphal and while on the way the Manipur government as well as people signalled warning that they would not allow any such activist to enter Manipur who propagates the division of Manipur.  AS a response to this, Muivah supporters blocked the highway and declared ECONOMIC BLOCKADE till Muivah is allowed entry.  And it has affected the lives of almost all the Manipuries who depend on the supplies through this highway.  So there is no entry to Manipur through this road.  And I am visiting Manipur during this chaotic situation.
My flight is right on time which takes me from Guwahati to Imphal on 10th May,  Rajmani comes to pick me up and I am on my way to Manipur University.  I look around the roadside while in the vehicle, am reminded of lot of things which my father use to share with us when we were small and he was posted in Manipur.  We use to look forward for his annual leave and he would tell us the conditions in Manipur, that was sometime in late 70s and early 80s, Ukhrool, Monn, Mokokchung, etc etc. are the names I heard from him only.
I check into the guest house of the university, the ambiance of the university and the guest house is good, I am told I have to be ready at 10:30 AM so that I can attend the Silver Jubilee celebration of the department of commerce at Manipur University, Imphal.

We are there at the venue at the given time but the Vice chancellor comes after around 45 minutes with all his security guards, so the function starts late.  I am glad that this department has completed 25 years of its existence.  Many of the oldies of this department are know to me directly or indirectly.  The Profile of the department is released today at the function which reflects on the achievements of the department as well as the present status.  I carry a copy of the profile back home.  Two books are released on the occasion one authored/edited by Dr Tejmani singh (Head, dept of comm) and another one edited by Dr Rajmani Singha on 'Commerce Education in North-East India' and I have a paper in that book on Commerce Education in India-its past, present and future.  Prof Sunil Kumar Gupta (SKG), Vice Chancellor, Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla is the Invitee Speaker, who spoke on the status of Commerce Education in India, I dont quite agree on his views.  I shall be writing to him about it through Email.
The function is organized nicely and after the function is over, I get back to the guest house for lunch.  Both of us (SKG and I) take lunch, he proceeds to take little rest and I join Rajmani in visiting different departments of the university as well as commerce department.  There seems to be some problem as to the maintenance of the university buildings, furnishings etc however Manipur University is able to make a mark amongst the universities of the north-east india.  This university has a very different past, first it used to be a campus of JNU and in 80s it became full-fledged state university and till 2005 it functioned like that, however in 2005, it was declared as Central University.  One can see lot of constructions coming up in the campus which shows the flow of funds from the centre to the university.
We are taken at around 4:30 pm to the Imphal city, we walk through the market fully run by manipuri women, we follow a thorough way towards Aloo Road where I heard an old song being played...tu hindu banega na musalman banega, insan ki aulad hai insan banega...kudrat ney to bakshi thi bas'ek hi dharti hamney kahin bharat kahin iran banaya. (तू हिन्दू बनेगा ना मुसलमान बनेगा, इंसान कि औलाद है, इंसान बनेगा.... कुदरत ने तो बक्षी थी बस एक ही धरती, हमने कहीं भारत कहीं ईरान बनाया).
It was raining all through our visit to the city, the market looks like any other city market.  Imphal is a huge valley sorrounded by hills...4/5 part of manipur is hills comprising of 5 districts, remaining 4 districts are in the valley/plain area... We are taken to a hotel (Nirmala - if I correctly remember the name) for dinner, the time - 6 pm, because the shops get closed by that time so it is advisable not to be around after 6:30 or so. We are seven of us there, 4 opting for veg food and 3 for non veg.  The food is ok, we are then taken back in the same vehicles to the guest house. 

It rained heavily in the night.  The electricity has played foul and after the tiring day I depart to sleep....
11th May 2010
I am taken for Breakfast at Prof Prasain's place alongwith SKG, the breakfast is good and then afterwords while we are on our way to the airport to see off SKG, we go to a hindu temple which is one of the oldest temple of Manipur, further we also visit ISKCON temple on our way.  After leaving SKG at the airport we reach back to the university and I take lunch at the guest house and get ready for the Viva of a doctoral student of Rajmani.  WE meet the Dean (Prof Amar Yunam) and conduct the viva in his office.  Interesting study on the university accounting systems and comparison between State universities and Central Universities in North East India.  It all gets over in around one and half hour. 
I visit International market with Rajmani and did some small shopping.  I take dinner at Rajmani's place and get back to the guest house.  There is no electricity the whole night,,,, it is dark, terrible and still it is raining.
The next day I am called by WC Singh for breakfast and then taken to the Imphal Airport.  On the way I see 4-5 kms que of 4 wheelers on one side and around 1.5-2 kms of two wheelers on the other side of the Petrol pump (which is fully guarded with security personnels) for the want of petrol/diesel which is scarce at present in Manipur.  I am told Petrol is sold around Rs 150 per litre, LPG is more than Rs 1000. 
I make some simple observations as follows:
- Culturally, Manipur is very strong state.
- I find relatively more shops of medicines in the city, all across places.
- Generally, the sight of a smoker is not very common as compared to Guwahati, Dimapur, Kohima, Aizawl and Shillong.
- Residents are distressed, the glow on the faces is missing.
I reached back from Manipur visit to Shillong on 12th May 2010...
some more details coming....

Sunday, May 09, 2010

150th Birth Anniversary of Rabindra Nath Tagore

Lets remember this great luminary Rabindra Nath Tagore who composed our national anthem and these few lines cited by many, many people, we have studied these lines in our school days.....

Where The Mind is Without Fear
Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high;
Where knowledge is free;
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow
         domestic walls;
Where words come out from the depth of truth;
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection;
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the
         dreary desert sand of dead habit;
Where the mind is led forward by thee into ever-widening thought
        and action--
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.

Lets contribute our bit for the betterment of the country, system, institutions (that we belong or otherwise) so that we grow better.

We remember you Thakur Da for all that you contributed for the cause of betterment of humanity....

Thursday, May 06, 2010

26/11 and the decision on Kasab

It is just alive in my memory lane when I was in the hotel in Thimphu, Bhutan just reached back after the busy day of conference, wanted to see what Indian cricket team is doing... Instead learnt that Taj Hotel in Mumbai is hit by the terrorist attack, on the other side there were extremist's siege at Bangkok International Airport, Bangkok, the flights were cancelled, and our other friends who had come to Thimphu to attend the conference, had to spent a compulsory halt at Thimphu.  I started back the next day as scheduled, reached Gedugg, where I was to spend the night, the live telecast was still on as the terrorists were still continuing their spree at the Taj.  We watched it live on TV, kept discussing the issues involved, next day I reached Phuntsholing and met some old students, Sonam Dorji (RICB) and Ugyen Namgyel (Bhutan Lotteries) and Kundan/Chandan Negi (HGS alumni), kept talking about what was going on in Mumbai, watched live even in the restaurant where we had lunch.  Took train to Guwahati from New cooch behar, reached Guwahati and then to Shillong..... the massacre still continued, watched it live on TV.... It was the most tragic saga being telecasted.
The terror shooters were not knowing what they are doing, or they were knowing pretty well, what they are doing, they must be having their own justifications of their actions, but any action of such nature needed condemnation from my heart....
Kasab, being one such terrorist, is sentenced to death today....

Sunday, April 18, 2010

CK Prahalad is no more...

Prof CK Prahalad died on 16 April, 2010 while suffering from lung disease. TA Arun wrote an article on the The Times of India (C K Prahalad: He saw people behind markets) mentioning about his contributions.  

I had commented on this as follows: 

The students of Strategy, Management and Policy would miss the absence caused by the demise of CKP. His works on core competence, Innovation, Competition, future products, services and processes, poverty alleviation through bottom of the pyramid approach, to name few shall always guide us... Though he wont be there in physical form but his timeless works would always remind us of his presence amidst us... 

His workplace, Univ of Michigan's business school had expressed its grief on his death in this obituary.  Adi Ignatius (the editor of HBR) wrote a small piece in HBR and many people commented on that.  It provides a good insight into the contribution of CKP.  Further HBR has a dedicated page on the contributions of CKP and almost all the major works are included here. Francis Gouillart has given his obituary to this legend. The other contributions include:
Justin Fox
Walter Kiechel 
Ron Ashikenas

Chidanand Rajghatta
Neelima Mahajan

Ariene Chang on WSJ

Strategy+Business had an interview with CKP which they published on 9th aug 2010 just after a day of his birthday... had he been surviving he would have been celebrating his 69th birthday... latest and good inteview....

An obituary page at Univ of Michigan website...

C.K. Prahalad, Management Guru, Dies -

C.K. Prahalad, Management Guru, Dies -

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Notes from my Diary - 9th April 2010

Shashi Tharoor’s visit

IT was a great day for our university as the cabinet minister of state for external affairs, Dr Shashi Tharoor was here in the to inaugurate the international seminar on 'From Land Locked (though one of my colleague kept insisting that instead of Land Locked it should be Locked Land, he had his own arguments about it, which no one seems to have cared for and so did I, what is in the name after all even Shakespeare mentioned Rose remains rose, whatever name we call it) to Land Linked: North East India in BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal initiative for multi sectoral technical and economic cooperation)' organized by Jadavpur Association of International Relations (JAIR), hosted by NEHU, sponsored by CII and initiated by Public Diplomacy Division under Ministry of External Affairs. Similar event was organized by the this division two years back at Hotel Pinewood where Mr Pranab Mukherjee (then defence minister) had come and discussed the issues.

A tall and handsome looking minister was wearing his favorite band-gala suit with a heroic hair-style and its occasional shifting was making him fashionable, filmy and a framing object. It was a good experience listening to Shashi Tharoor, however before and after he spoke, he was busy with his gizmo (mobile) or talking to HE Governor of Meghalaya, Mr Ranjit Mooshahary. The focus of his talk was on role of India in building better relationship with other neighoring countries through business ties and creating routes for free access. India as a country of unity in diversity or diversity in unity needs to play a very crucial role in strengthening the environment of brotherhood and fostering congenial relationships across borders.

The speech given by the governor was interesting, invigorating and interactive. I have heard him many times and every time he leaves an intangible mark in my understanding of issues. The inaugural session was over at around 12 noon.

Again at 2:30 pm the department of political science organized an informal interaction with Dr Shashi Tharoor in the science seminar hall with the faculty members and students. It was very well attended session where Dr Tharoor was accompanied by 4 persons (3 men and 1 woman). Before starting the session he made certain points on india's position on its foreign policy and international relations. The session was very nice as he responded to the questions asked related to whether India being subservient to US or otherwise, India's role in NAM, India's relations with China and Pakistan, border issues, illegal entry of individuals from the borders, India's position in UN security council, his tweeting initiative (it was told that he has more than 7 lac followers on Twitter), and cricketing ventures. His reply to a question on Non-Aligned Movement was quite interesting when he mentioned that once in early 50s Nehru was asked by a diplomat from the US. 'You are against us or with us', Nehru's reply was 'Yes', (which in fact implied nothing). His reply to a question asked by a student on his IPL association was very diplomatic (as expected), he said he does not have any affiliation what so ever with any team, however if any team comes from his state i.e., Kerala, he would support it.

I asked a question on his personal opinion on Freedom, Democracy and Governance. His reply was simple yet complicated. He said all his writings have topics on these and I could follow his books to have a better understanding of his views. However he mentioned that he admires indian democracy the way it is being governed and the freedom in indian democracy is much broader than other nations. I do not know to what extent he himself had freedom to speak his mind in the party he belongs. It was quite interesting to note that being a minister he was not able to speak his mind (while admiring indian democracy and freedom values) freely. Let me respect his freedom on this.

The way he was interacting and responding was admirable as he had answer and anecdotes for almost every question. His informal behavior made it more homely, free and frank. At the end of the session, two of his colleagues were introduced, one as Mr S Suri (Joint Secretary - Ministry of External Affairs) and another one as Mr S Chakraborty (Shashi Tharoor's personal secretary), two others (one man and one woman) were not introduced.

I am yet to believe that this person is in a polity of a country like India. I would certainly look forward for another bestseller from him in the times to follow on his political sojourn which might not last more looking at the ways it is twisting and turning with his tweeting. Surely he would make a good author but a politician, I doubt….

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

I Know I dont Know Anything

Notes from my diary

26th March 2010 ….it is 11 PM and I am busy with this job…

‘Oh sir come stand here, I would like to click a photo’
‘come boys, come on girls stand with sir,,, hamko photo uthaney do (let me click a photo)’
‘sir ready, smile, eh stand properly boys, that’s good, ready, done’

A group photo of me and my students standing together was clicked by a person with dark face and dyed moustaches. He had called me seeing me standing in the lobby of the old guest house. We stood infront of the nehu old guest house and he did his job.

I was remembering seeing the person during the inaugural session of the seminar where he was busy with his Nikon, stretching through his neck and its cover hanging around on the other shoulder, clicking the snaps, one after another from different angles and edges, far and wide, zooming in, zooming out. Oh I remembered further I had seen this person in the dark of yesterday’s night, I was introduced to him, I forgot his name but yes I remembered he was introduced to me by Mr Arnab Chowdhury, he was accompanying Mr CC Mitra (the chief guest of our seminar), I vividly remembered meeting three of them (Mitra, Arnab and him).

Just after doing his job, he came and met me, ‘sir, do you remember me, I met you yesterday night….’ ‘Yeah, yeah, so you are with Mr Mitra’, I promptly replied.

‘I have seen you clicking lot of photos today, would you copy some of them in our laptop’ I just requested.

‘Yes sir, why not, let me finish some more photos, I shall copy in your laptop, but sir, I am not a photographer’ he asserted his point and position. ‘I am accompanying Mr Mitra, he is my friend, this camera is of my wife, I just brought on my visit to Guwahati, Mitra ji asked me to come to Shillong with him, so I followed, and that’s how I am here.’ He stopped for a while. And opened his mouth with a very calm smile. ‘sir ham mitra ji ka kutta ki tarah hai, sir I am chartered and cost’ he was further making his position clear to me, so that I am through with any of my false feeling about him.

I was in a shock for a while, Yes I had misunderstood him for a photographer or a office staff of IIBM, Guwahati, I did not tell him about it, but he had already understood by the way I had asked him to copy photos, and that’s why he had made his position clear. This person, so simple in looks, so busy mingling with people and students, clicking photos of almost every capturable moment that one could think of. He was perfectly looking like a photographer, I, in my wildest dream could never have imagined that this person could be a chartered accountant (CA) and a cost accountant. I know pretty well what takes it to become chartered accountant and for that matter, even cost accountant.

I get nostalgic about my own past, when we were growing and studying in the college, had seen some people talking about chartered accountants and the profession, did not know till then that there is something called cost accountant as well. By age, I was 17 years when I passed my graduation. Some friends were planning to join CA, my inclination to do CA was already a non possibility, even for asking about it, because my elder brother, who was much better in studies than me and one year senior to me, had afforded to ask my mother about joining CA, and through the free consultancy offered by my uncles to my mother, it was ruled in the house that CA is meant for rich people, who can afford the expense, tuition etc etc etc… so we did not have any courage of going beyond this declaration and decision. May be we lacked that determination as well, it was ruled out that he or I would go for this professional qualification, rather we should follow traditional path for further education, though that also the advisors were not in approval of. But our mother was convinced that yes we should go ahead with our further education as far as it does not involve much of monetary commitment. We never complained that, we knew of our family much better than our younger brothers who were still in school. We followed our path….

Let me leave it here…. And get back to the point that I was trying to make that doing CA is not an easy thing, it is one of the course which has least passing percentage. It is one of the most difficult courses in accounting and well respected profession in the area of accounting and decision making.

So I was still finding it difficult to believe that this person possesses this qualification and is well versed with the development happening in the area.

‘I came here for my work as well’ he pointed out to me on the two young boys standing with their bikes and helmets, ‘sir do you see them, they work in my company, I came to meet them, they have brought the details, I would check things in my laptop and they would report me about the progress and my job is over.’

He asked some students to get a tea for him, and I knew tea won’t be ready so I volunteered ‘lets go, we shall have coffee together, I would show you commerce department as well’. He readily agreed. I was interested in knowing little bit more about him, and he was our guest anyway, so this offer was made. I took him in my vehicle and we followed our way through international hostel, university clinic, shopping complex, CDD, exam block, administrative building, nehu lake, small bridge towards the building of commerce department, and then to the Nescafe shop…

He checked his pocket and found one business card of himself and told me sir you are lucky, I thought I am finished with the cards but this one is for you, I reciprocated the gesture, so a very normal ritual of exchange of cards was over. I looked at the card which read: Amalesh Ganguly, Sr General Manager, Shriram Transport Finance Co Ltd, Kolkota. He started talking about his way of living, ‘sir main aapko bola tha na, main kutta hoon, ham sab kuttey hain.’ I was feeling little bit uncomfortable with the use of words that he was so comfortable with. I keep hearing this word from my wife at home, to whom so ever she does not like, she says ‘kutta hai’. I thought how this is so. He made his point again clear to me. ‘See sir, we all work for our bosses, dogs also work for bosses, everybody has a subordinate (dog) as well as a boss, so simple, ham sab kuttey hain, sabko boss key saamney dum hilana hota hai.’ I was not convinced to the core.

By now we had already built a rapport of sharing. So I asked him to drop the prefix ‘sir’ from our further conversation, he tried but failed, I kept insisting but failed.

He told me that he use to compose poems in Bengali, he likes making friends, he enjoys life as it comes and I was responding positively with all his likings, I told I too have interest in composing, primarily in my mother tongue (hindi) and sometime in English as well, I like making friends and yes enjoy the life as it comes. We shook hands, he showed a gesture of hugging me, but resisted. We were standing at the café, I ordered a coffee for him and a lemon tea for self.

He said ‘sir you know, I know, I don’t know anything’. I loved it. I know that the more we learn the more we know of our ignorance, it was simple. However the way he said it I felt like shaking hand again but resisted, maybe we were not yet that familiar. He started deserving my respect for his way of thinking and educating me on different aspects of life and to deal with different situations. He took out a cigarette from his heart touching pocket, offered one to me, in fact I wanted to smoke with him, but I was reminded of a self imposed discipline that I have been following since last 2 years of not smoking in Shillong, so I nodded my head in the gesture of thanking him for the offer. I knew fully well that I shall be denied of this type of company to smoke ever in shillong at least.

We kept talking, he recited a Bengali verse just two lines and told me it was composed by him, which meant something like relating men with life and the way we spent our life. He asked me to recite some of my own compositions in short, I promptly agreed (always hungry for people willing to listen the compositions), recited two-two lines of two of my compositions,,,,

यकीन होता नहीं तेरे यार होने का
वो यार क्या है जो वक्त पर दगा ना दे …

Another one (composed in 1984, while I was doing graduation):

विश्वास करके मैने हज़ारों ठोकरें खायीं
फिर भी रेखाएं हाँथ की उलटी पायीं
I translated them for his convenience but he told he understood the meaning. He said we would make good friends, offered me that whenever I am in Kolkota, I must meet him and stay with him. He kept taking puff of his navy cut and just when it was over, took another stick out of the packet. Now I was trying to reach to the seminar venue as fast as I could since the session was to get over within 30 minutes. He finished puffing and then we were on our way back to the old guest house. He asked me ‘sir aap polish kartey hain’ I did not follow, and asked him what, ‘sir aap apna baal polish kartey hain, dye kartey hain, ham to apna chool or muuch dono polish karta hooon.’

We reached the old guest house, I got busy in the work, he got busy with those two of his employees, and we followed our respective business.

This simple looking person, was he really simple…. looks true… a gem… very clear in his thoughts…… ham sab kuttey hain,,,,,,,, I know that I don’t know anything…… really I must know that I don’t know anything….I can feel better, I can deal with people better, I can walk on the ground instead of flying…..

I really know…. I don’t know anything… Thanks Amalesh for teaching me this. It is my fortune that we met… My seminar is done…

Sunday, April 04, 2010


My thoughts on the present situation in NEHU a central university

2nd April 2010

As I See it…
It was good Friday today, for me it is was a better Friday. Last Friday was on 26th March and we at the department of commerce were all busy with the national seminar on Global Economic Crisis and Indian Industry. It was its first day, and being seminar director it was a very busy Friday for me. So in this context this Friday was better than the earlier Friday. After so many months it was a good family outing. I kept trying getting details of the village called Mawlynnong – the cleanest village. Just thought it is proper time in place to visit this village. Many of us might not have visited. Cleanliness is a virtue, cleansing is closely associated with it. But what to do instead we chose to go to Nartiang Monoliths. They remind us of their rigidity, solidness, and silence all around.

So many things happened between these two Fridays that I thought I should scribble down my thinking on all that I have seen, heard, looked, felt and been communicated. Of course it is difficult or rather impossible to believe one and not believe another one. Everyone has a point of view; every communication has a good in it, everybody shows a sense of belonging to the institution.

Who Am I…
Ever since I joined North-Eastern Hill University in 2002, I have been teaching papers like Organizational Behavior, Strategic Management, and Human Resource Management. I don’t know many things, people, events, equations, affiliations etc etc. I am just an infant of 8 years in this institution of more than 35 years of its existence. There are so many people who have been here for as many as 20-25-30 odd years or more. Their understanding of the issues must be better than mine but of course they might have their own bias as well. Bias, because we are all human beings and human beings are prone to bias.

What do I do here…
Let me talk of the papers and topics that I teach. These papers include so many topics of relevance, rendition and recurrences that I would like to make a mention of some of them like - Basics of Organizations, challenges and opportunities, Ethics and Organizational Behavior, Work Place diversity, Personality, Perception, Attitude & Learning, Foundations of Group behavior, Groups and Teams, Group Dynamics, Communication, Organizational conflict, Conflict Resolution, Transactional Analysis, Negotiation and Inter-group behavior, Leadership and Management, Transformational Leadership, Authentic Leadership, Leadership Styles, Contemporary Issues in Leadership, Power and Politics. the importance of Strategy, Corporate Vision, Mission & Philosophy, Strategic Management in different contexts, Ethics and Social Responsibility, Integration Strategies, Intensive Strategies, Diversification and Differentiation Strategies, Organising Implementation-Staffing, Leading and Job Design. Strategy Implementation for international business, Strategy Evaluation - Techniques of Evaluation & Control, Strikes and lockouts, Unionism, negotiation and collective bargaining etc etc…

The conditions in this university in all these years and more so in last 4 months have provided me a great opportunity to develop some cases and relate the happenings to the subjects I teach. This is just an academic interest; however there are other interests as well which keep my system in fully sensitized mode. I really love reading and writing as all my friends in the university here. I have my point of view on almost everything - from which country should Sania choose to play after her wedding to where should the dustbins be kept in the campus, from who has proved a better President (Kalam Vs Pratibha Patil) to which should be the ideal parking space, how the coupons for patients in nehu clinic should be designed instead of shabby paper tokens; on all small and big happenings, things, objects, people and places. Many a times these point of views are kept just in the diaries and blogs here and there or are expressed in informal chats with the friends, relatives and colleagues. I strongly feel that we must have a point of view, we must have a voice.

Only bad knows the importance of good and they coexist in every system. We get night after day and day after night and both of them have their importance. Honesty is important because there is dishonesty. Pain and pleasure coexist. There is no problem which does not have a solution and there is no solution which is absolute. We get what we deserve, so if we expect good, we need to do good in order to claim what we really deserve. In an ideal situation, the guilty gets punished and the innocent is liberated. But if the system patronizes the guilty, the degree and depth of atrocities and anarchism dominate. The balloon keeps expanding its size. The ‘fews’ only are confided, consulted and kept ignoring fully what Lou Holtz had said – ‘It is a fine thing to have ability, but the ability to discover ability in others is the true test’.

People join or start organizations in order to achieve their individual goals, the match between individual and organizational goal encourages, inspires and motivates individuals to perform their best, otherwise the mismatch creates disaster both for individual as well as for the organization. Personality, Emotion and Perception are so interesting topics to teach. There are so many traits of personality (enduring characteristics that describe an individual’s behavior) that I teach and most relevant of them all is 16 primary traits which have their application in the present situation as they cover many of the individuals fitting in perfection. Otherwise the Big-five model is more popular academically – Extroversion, Agreeableness, Conscientiousness, Emotional stability and Openness to experience. So nice, such a strong case, we have all of it. Further there are people of Type A and Type B.

There are major personality attributes influencing organizational behavior like Locus of control, Machiavellianism (degree to which an individual is pragmatic, maintains emotional distance, and believes that ends can justify means), self-esteem (individuals’ degree of liking or disliking themselves), self monitoring (a personality trait that measures an individual’s ability to adjust his or her behavior to external situational factors). Interestingly John Holland’s work on Personality-job fit theory cannot be avoided. When we talk of emotions there is literature on felt versus displayed emotions. Gayatri Bezboruah mentions (The Sentinel, April 4, 2010, melenge p 2) that emotions are full of colors, we are green with envy, red with anger and blue with sorrow. She further mentions types of emotions viz., Joy, Anger, Fear, Affection, Jealousy, Curiosity, Anxiety and Shyness. How true...theoritical as well as practical part of it. There is a Greek term alexithymia meaning ‘lack of emotion’ which tries to guide us on Can people be emotionless? Needless to mention the work of Daniel Goleman on Emotional Intelligence (EQ) and its relevance and popularity over IQ.

Attribution theory (as part of the topic Perception) of AH Kelly is so appropriate that I cannot ignore but to make just a broad mention – when individuals observe behavior they attempt to determine whether it is internally or externally caused (Internally caused behaviors are those that are believed to be under the personal control of the individual similarly Externally caused behavior is seen as resulting from outside causes; that is, the person is seen as having been forced into the behavior by the situation) is the premise of the theory generated from three interpretations viz., Distinctiveness, Consensus and Consistency having internal/external cause of attribution with high/low degree. There is Fundamental Attribution Error which mostly all of us commit. There is substantial evidence that we have a tendency to underestimate the influence of external factors and overestimate the influence of internal or personal factors. There is also a tendency for individuals to attribute their own successes to internal factors such as ability or effort while putting the blame for failure on external factors such as luck. This is called the “self-serving bias” and suggests that feedback provided to employees will be distorted by recipients.

Another mentionable piece on Perception is on Frequently Used Shortcuts in Judging Others. This is a topic which is very important for students appearing for examinations all across the programs, institutions and locations because it is very practical. It is all happening all around the campus these days which is quite visible from the communications. Robbins mentions that an understanding of these shortcuts can be helpful in recognizing when they can result in significant distortions. These shortcuts are Selective Perception (Any characteristic that makes a person, object, or event stand out will increase the probability that it will be perceived), Halo Effect (It occurs when we draw a general impression on the basis of a single characteristic), Contrast Effects (our reaction to one person is influenced by other person whom we recently encountered), Projection (The tendency to attribute one’s own characteristics to other people), and Stereotyping (judging someone on the basis of our perception of the group to which he or she belongs).

Group dynamics is another interesting topic in the study of organizational behavior which includes why do people form groups, how do people communicate in the groups, etc etc. There are formal groups there are informal groups like we have formal communication and informal communication. The 5 stage model of formation of groups is quite apt – forming, storming, norming, performing and adjourning. There are few alternative models as well. Is conflict bad for an organization, why do organizations encourage conflict, when does conflict become bad…. These are some common questions which are asked from the students and we teach them the theories, may be at times we do practice but very rarely, but still theories remain relevant for the development of literature as well as for providing better basis and rationality. Functional and dysfunctional conflict catches my attention and draws me to the study of the present environment. There are some other types of conflicts as well – Inter-group and intra group conflict, Interpersonal conflict and Intrapersonal conflict. Intrapersonal conflict arises when our heart says something and mind says something different. There are steps to be followed in order to resolve these conflicts. There is remedy but no remedy is perfect.

The literature on leadership, motivation, power and politics can really guide us in many ways. The theories of leadership based on trait, behavior and situation have contributed tremendously for the organizations and their positive development. Contingency theory of leadership is an apt example apart from Hersey-Blanchard’s Situational leadership. Of late there have been new experiments and the nature of leadership has shifted to Authentic Leadership and transformational leadership. Chris Argyris’s Immaturity-maturity theory based on different transformations is still a well cited work. One of my teachers gave me a definition of a leader and I think to all my students once or twice I do not forget to mention leader is a man who knows the way, shows the way and goes the way. And I know of many leaders in the organizations that I have worked for, who have virtually followed it religiously, they are great leaders. Of course political leaders are totally different creed for this; however we have some exceptions there as well.

Let me switch over from Organizational behavior to Strategic management. Arthashastra was written by Chanakya in the 3rd BC which talks a lot on strategies and their role in policy making and implementation. In the literature more popular and acceptable work of Carl von Clausewitz in a book form ‘On War’ (the use of combats for the purposes of the war), published in 1832, is remarkable. It is well cited in the works on strategy, though the word strategy is a derivation from greek word strategos which means tactics. In very simple words strategy is a game-plan. It is different from planning. Strategy is required in order to win over competitors. It does not have its existence where there is no competition. Here competition does not necessarily be from individuals, it could be with the situation or time as well. The author of Winning, Jack Welch transformed GE Corporation through his focus on targets and objectives. We all have targets, we all follow strategies. The organizations make strategic choices out of the strategic options available. Integration, Intensive, diversification, differentiation strategies are some of the options available. Integration includes backward as well as forward integration, dealing with supply chain management, developing better systems for supply chaining, intensive strategies are specific to functional areas, diversification is related as well as unrelated, differentiation is related to products and services offered and there are further so many options available. There is horizontal as well as vertical integration and many organizations follow it. As a layman people can understand this integration literally.

In 2004, Kim and Mauborgne wrote a paper in Harvard Business Review on Blue Ocean Strategy, it provided a new thinking for the researchers as well as practitioners to think about developing Blue Oceans. Harvard University Press published the book in the title of Blue Ocean Strategy in 2005. This work focuses on making competition irrelevant. They talk about two types of oceans, Red Ocean and Blue Ocean. Where the products/services compete within (product features, service offerings, price, etc), the competition become intense, the organizations follow all types of tactics in order to compete and it results in lot of bleeding and the blood creates Red ocean. On the other hand when the organizations and individuals think creatively with innovative ideas, they create blue ocean where competition becomes irrelevant. This is a great work and at present many consultants are making fortune out of this. Zunaira who is an US based independent consultant on blue ocean strategy, was in Bangalore in the last month and we just missed her in our seminar. It would have been great had she come, what a difference it could have made. We still need to come out of red ocean and create blue ocean or may be green ocean. There are many other such experiments done in the organizations in order to make them better performing, successful and effective. These organizations are profit making as well as non-profit making.

The environmental analysis is a key element of strategy formulation. There is SWOT (Strength, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis which is also known as TOWS matrix which helps in order to analyze environment. The individuals have been seen quite busy on these analyses. Strategy evaluation is done before its implementation as well as after implementation and then there are different techniques to do it and strategic audit and control is the most important part of any strategy to transform organizations. A very good strategy without proper implementation makes it a fail, similarly if audit and control is ineffective, the strategy cannot become successful. There is Balanced Scorecard which was developed by Kaplan and Norton for strategic performance measurement. The four focused areas need the attention in our institution as well.

My area of research interest…
It has been more than 10 years that I have been reading literature on satisfaction, happiness and well-being. It is quite interesting and self satisfying. Happiness is an attitude like job satisfaction is a work attitude. It is a momentary response to certain stimuli. The Easterlin Paradox helps us to find the relationship between money and happiness. Money plays an important role but it is not that the nations which are rich are happier than the nations which are poor. (God made man, man made money, and money made the man mad)... There are lots of organizations working on studying and improving well being. Subjective well being as developed by Diener has been studied in Indian settings as well.

We all strive to lead a satisfied and happy life and we follow different pathways in order to attain happiness. Synder of university of Kansas developed Hope Theory, and I am fortunate to have met him and discussed the pathways he suggested in his work, I did not know when I met him that he was suffering from cancer, he died in 2006. His contribution on hope and forgiveness is just amazing. We are all trapped in his web of contributions. Further recently a clinical psychologist, Phil Friedman wrote a book titled The Forgiveness Solution. We have been in communication since last 6 years after we met and exchanged our thinking on happiness. He told me very interesting incidents he encountered when he visited Mumbai way back in early 80s or so. We continue being active facebook friends. He recently gave a lecture on self-forgiveness. Really great thinking.

What I feel…my expressions…
When I registered my profile on facebook, I put a sentence from my personal diary which I scribbled long back and that is still hanging on my profile, every time I write a one liner, I think of changing the earlier one, but somehow stick to the first one it is: If we learn to respect the difference in others, we can deal with any person in any circumstances...It would remain be there and would remain be relevant. I strongly feel that we need to respect the difference. Life is interesting because we are all different. Just imagine had we been same, same in gender, same in color, same in all the expected fields, the life would have been real boring. So life is interesting because we are all different. We have different style of walking and talking, different style of eating and meeting, different style of teaching and cheating, sleeping and slipping, different, different, different. Lets respect this difference and enjoy the difference.
In July 2008 I started a discussion using ning network on What makes an organization happy and the responses were very positive and provided a learning experience for my work. The summary in pdf format is available at : There are so many things that we can learn to make our organization happy. David Zinger started asked a question in one sentence how can we describe Employee Engagement (this is emerging area of research in the field of HRM), I wrote around 6 months back – give them ear, they would give their heart. The one liners are compiled and available on the web on EE network on Ning.

The other day we heard Kaushik Basu and his responses on what happens to the money sent from centre and how much of it really reaches to the intended users. Former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi’s view on this is known to almost each one of us. I think all my friends would agree on the honest intention of the government then why these middlemen are allowed to intervene in the process. What is our role as sensitized individuals? At least keep writing on this…. We know 80% of the resources are consumed by 20% of the individuals and 20% of the resources are left for 80% of the population. Are we doing something to bridge up this gap, we talk of equality, equitable distribution and eclecticism, yet we fail in putting the things in proper place and perspective. Is it because of system, I think it is we who make the system.

Last month there was fire in one of the oldest building in the Park Street area of Kolkota, in the building which housed Music World outlet, it is a memorable place for me. I remember it was 30th Dec 2008 morning when I met Amartya Sen in this shop, talked for 2-3 minutes, a towering personality. His photo clip in my mobile shall have a special place for me. I haven’t been able to go through his book The Idea of Justice but title catches my eye, what really is the idea of justice at our workplace. An Argumentative Indian is a treasure in my memory lane where Sen has categorically mentioned that Indian Buddhists had great commitment to discussion as a means of social progress. We have all been discussing so many things, are we on the path to social progress in this system.

The monk who sold his Ferrari, Who will cry when you die and The Greatness Guide by Robin Sharma, are three bestsellers in non-fiction category. They are simple, practical and quite convincing works. Robin believes in Culture is King not Singh is King when he suggests to build strong culture. What do we leave behind? Why the hell we keep repeating our mistakes, do we ever bother what are we leaving behind, are we strengthening the culture or weakening it. We need to see through the eyes of understanding as he puts it and concludes that - as you seek the good in people, not only will they want to show up more fully for you, but you will see more good in your world.

We have been talking over security issue but surprisingly it is showing out our insecurities. When hearts are loyal distances make no difference. The learning through the environment and risk analysis is guiding our way towards the actions of tomorrow with the melting of courage and patronizing the respective sides. We need to think as individuals, just as bare individuals with our clear wisdom and honest intention in the interest of the organization/institution that is providing us bread and butter rather than calculating crude comfort and compromising commitment. We have overworked in the last few months in the interest of the institution so that the culture does not get weakened. Conflicts sound functional so far. Better that we are still following insinuations. Modesty demands it.

I attended a session of Shiv Khera around 10 years back. He talked about converting weaknesses into strengths and deriving strength from anger. I still remember his citation of Gandhi on anger when he mentioned that it was the anger of Gandhi which guided and forced him to take the course of action that we all are aware of. We can learn from our mistakes and not repeat them over and over again. There is first for everything, good as well as bad. It has never happened in the history, every day we make history, we don’t need to use shortcuts especially to judge others.

How do I enjoy…on every small thing...seriously small…going deep…
I am looking at the watch and just near it there is my DVD collection, the titles are crazy, crazy for the moment. We are a movie buff family. I am fan of Aamir Khan, have been watching his movies and watched almost all his recent releases. There was a movie Ghazini, which I and my younger brother watched on 24th Dec 2008 at Fun Republic Mall in Lucknow, UP. It was its premier show as the movie got released the next day. What a movie, nice character, short time memory loss, the music was great. I hope this short time memory loss is not going to be followed by many of my friends here, they are going to remember what they have written and raised and would follow it, otherwise short (long) time memory loss should not become an excuse for conveniences. But we all suffer from this interesting syndrome – short time memory loss.

Aamir’s another hit movie was Taare Zameen Par, every child is special, lets respect the difference in others. The title is great and I feel all Taare are Zameen par, but taare are better on sky. Oh.. his latest hit 3 IDIOTS, so much fight between the author and producer, Chetan Bhagat and Vidhu Vinod Chopra, ultimately they resolved their problem by reaching to a mutual agreement. 5 point someone is another good read, if you have read the book first and seen the movie later, there are probabilities that you may not like the way the movie is made. But movie is all together different medium. The title still catches my eye 3 IDIOTS. Aamir’s other hits include, qayamat sey qayamat tak, Dil hai ki manta nahin, Aankheyn.

I belong to a city called Bareilly which is famous for few hindi songs and of course Priyanka Chopra. She was recently given national award for best actress in a film titled Fashion. She came opposite Shahid kapoor in a movie titled Kameeney. Vishal Bharadwaj has been criticized on having such title. My collection of movies have some of these titles, these are interesting titles, just few titles…enjoy the list: Ali baba and 40 thieves, tenalirama, hanumaan (kids collection), Sparsh, Mili, Sadma, Daag, drohkaal, baton baton mein, mukhti, bawandar, do ankhen barah haath, ijaazat, khomoshi, ghayal, ghatak, damini, chitchor, choti si baat, purab aur paschim, upkar, kranti, apna aasmaan, awarapan, the president is coming, dhoop, life mey kabhi kabhi, golmaal, golmaal returns, jab we met, kismet konnection, jannat, laaga chunri mein daag, kabhi alvida naa kehna, rang birangi, dard ka rishta, chalte chalte, amanush, balle balle Amritsar to LA, mithya, road, lakshya, Koi mil gaya, kora kagaz, anurag, kabhi kabhi, sangeet, naram garam, main aur mera hathi, ek ajnabi, dhamal, tom dick and harry, zindagi rocks, gadar, sholay, strangers, yahaan, halla bol, rang de basanti, chamku, ek challis ki last local, phir kabhi, yes boss, chot, drone, kidnap, dostana, rab ney bana di Jodi, salaam namastey, after the sunset, million dollar baby.

I thoroughly enjoyed listening to a song from LOVE AAJKAL (does this title sound good) love aajkal…..

Song : Dooriyan, Music : Pritam Chakraborty, Lyrics : Irshad Kamil, Singers : Mohit Chauhan

Yeh Dooriyan
Yeh Dooriyan
Yeh Dooriyan

In Raahon Ki Dooriyan
Nigahon Ki Dooriyan
Hum Rahon Ki Dooriyan
Fanah Ho Sabhi Dooriyan

Kyun Koi Paas Hai
Door Hai Kyun Koi
Jaane Na Koi Yahan Pe

Aa Raha Paas Ya Door Mein Ja Raha
Janu Na Mein Hoon Kahan Pe

Yeh Dooriyan

In Raahon Ki Dooriyan
Nigahon Ki Dooriyan
Hum Rahon Ki Dooriyan
Fanah Ho Sabhi Dooriyan

Yeh Dooriyan
Yeh Dooriyan

Kabhi Hua Yeh Bhi
Khali Rahon Pe Bhi
Tu Tha Mere Saath

Kabhi Tujhe Milke Lauta
Mera Dil Yeh Khali Khali Haath
Yeh Bhi Hua Kabhi
Jaise Hua Aabhi
Tujhko Sabhi Mein Paa Liya

Tera Mujhe Kar Jaati Hai Dooriyan
Satati Hain Dooriyan
Tarsati Hain Dooriyan
Fanah Ho Sabhi Dooriyan

Kaha Bhi Na Mene
Nahi Jeena Mene
Tu Jo Na Mila

Tujhe Bhule Se Bhi Na
Bola Na Mene Chahun Fasla

Bas Fasla Rahein
Ban Ke Kasak Jo Kahen
Ho Aur Chahat Yeh Aur Jawan

Teri Meri Mit Jaani Hai Dooriyan
Begani Hai Dooriyan

Hat Jani Dooriyan
Fanah Ho Sabhi Dooriyan

Kyun Koi Paas Hai
Door Hai Kyun Koi
Jaane Na Koi Yahan Pe

Aa Raha Paas Ya Door Mein Ja Raha
Janu Na Mein Hoon Kahan Pe

Yeh Dooriyan

In Raahon Ki Dooriyan
Nigahon Ki Dooriyan
Hum Rahon Ki Dooriyan
Fanah Ho Sabhi Dooriyan

vkshrotryia, 2010
Thursday – the 1st April, Fools day, 2nd April – Good Friday, 3rd April – better Saturday, 4th April – best Sunday…..