Monday, February 28, 2005


No I am not going to write any detail about Convocation here. The thing is I arrived late for Convocation, that too when the Chief Guest had already begun his speech. When I did it, I did not give it even a second thought. Indians are known to be late, in general. In fact, fashionable! And we also like to get away with this habit by proudly declaring that we are Indians! But today I got scolded for this act of mine, and the worst thing was that I was not punished. Punishment, I think, relieves you of the burden of guilt and regret. When you don’t get punished, you do not get over the incident! In fact, I really thought about this issue, which seems little, for a long time. I realized, I have in fact got habituated to be late, unless I have to go for a class. Perhaps that is why in 23 years of my life, I have not yet learnt to manage time well! But now I have promised myself that I would keep my promises and commitments. It creates a bad impact about you and your attitude!

Sunday, February 27, 2005

the Film festival ends, and.....

After 'ChinaTown', the next day I went to see 'Citizen Kane'. Initially I felt out of place watching it but later I got what was it all about!The day after, I went for 'Rear Window' and it was good! Somewhere in the middle I thought that the actor is just sufferring from some psychological problem because he has been confined to a place for long! Thus he was reading too much into a non-issue, but then things happened.Grace Kelly was really graceful and this was my first Grace Kelly flick!You can also read its review here.
Today it is 26th February and it is Convocation-eve for the batch of 2004. Most of my seniors are already here. Today there was a play by OORJA, the theatre group of IMDR, followed by Mushaiyara, which is still going on. Then we have a party because they cannot stay till late on Sunday! Anyways, I met my mentor after a really long time. And it is good to see him again.
That's all for now.Got some work.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Mystery Theatre

As I promised myself two days back that I would do something different, a different experience, everyday; on Wednesday I was wondering what to do because almost the whole day had slipped out of my hand in classes, etc. And then suddenly one of my friends asked if I would like to go with him for a movie "ChinaTown", in a Film Festival running at the National Film Archive of India or NFAI. And since I do not lose any opportunity to be a part of anything like a Film Festival and since I have not really decided upon what to do, I accompanied him. I was extremely tired ny that time, but a promise is a promise, and that too to myself. I never lie to myself!
When we reached there, we found a really, really long queue, and we were wondering whether we would be able to get in or not, but after the earlier show finished, we got the chance. Two of our other friends were there too.
It is a Film Festival organised by Indira School of Communication, and it is called 'Mystery Theatre'.I would go there today also. Theatre and Film Festivals are new experiences, I never had in my life.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

War and Peace

That is again another award-winning documentary by Anand Patwardhan. As described by one of the websites "WAR AND PEACE" examines not merely the militarization of India, but analyzes the human cost that is extracted from its citizens in the name of 'National Security."It is shot over a period of 3 years in India, Pakistan, USA and Japan. I saw only the first part and next week I would see the second part. It was about Nuclear tests in Pokharan. It talked about do we really need nuclear weapons, and if yes, why do we need them? They just pose threat to our national security and nothing else! The most contentious issue is that how justified is it, when it eats up millions of dollars when on the other hand we are absolutely helpless about what to do about poverty. Is it justified spending so many of the tax-payers money for such ends? General notion of people who supported nuclear tests was that it was about self respect even if costs a lot of money and diseases to people staying in the vicinity of tests sites. But are we so rich that we could spend so much for just a superficial self respect? How much respected are we otherwise?
Another issue which cropped up after India’s nuclear tests, was Pakistan’s step forward towards nuclear weapons acquisition. It deteriorated the already worse situation between India and Pakistan, but self respect was intact!!!
After watching this documentary, I thought about only one thing what is that which motivates people like Anand Patwardhan? I mean if we look at the general people like you and I, some of us do not care about such issues at all, some give it a thought and move on. But there is something so passionate about works of Anand Patwardhan that it makes me think, what is that which keeps them going against all odds! Perhaps, we are all very ill-informed or atleast not well-informed, thus it is very difficult for us to decide what is our stance about any and every issue. To come to think of it, we know so little about everything!!!Thus we do not really stand for anything, like these people do, because they believe in something and that too quite passionately!
I am really looking forward to see the second part of ‘War and Peace’ and also ‘In the name of God’.
Atleast I did something different today! Tomorrow is another day!

My Resolution

I got so much frustrated by present scheme of things that I promised myself that I need to do something about it. So I promised myself that I would do one interesting thing everyday, interesting or different from what I usually do.Everyday I must have something to think about!

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

The Assassination of Gandhi

Ashish Nandi has written about 'The Politics of the Assassination of Gandhi', and it is quite informative. I am not going to reproduce that piece verbatim because it is an extremely boring thing to do. Rather I would like to comment on the content.
I must confess I was a complete ignorant as regards knowledge about Nathuram Godse is considered. I felt he was just a petty, fame-thirsty person. But Nathuram Godse and the assassination was a complete case in itself. During his early childhood, Nathuram was brought up as a girl, which eventually, perhaps, led to the indispensablity of proving his masculanity to the world.There were two things which Gandhi dreamed of, alongwith his struggle for freedom from British rule. They were--the eradication of power structure or the caste syatem in the society which accumulated power and respectability to a few; and the second thing being his negation of the concepts of masculinity and femininity. Godse was against both the ideas.
Nathuram belonged to the community of Chitpavan Brahmins of Maharashtra. Gandhi's call to disintegrate the caste system meant losing the power status which the Brahmins enjoyed, more so by the Chitpavan Brahmins because in Maharashtra there is no one equal to Kshatriyas, thus the divide between the Brahmins and the non-Brahmins was huge.
Along with this, Godse had to open a shop when he was 16 and later become a tailor because of poor economic conditions, but resorting to economic activities were considered to be demeaning for Brahmins. Thus there was all the more reason for him to establish his superiority in the society.
Submissiveness was equated with femininity and legitimate violence with masculanity. Perhaps this was the premise for his choice of a violent way to freedom struggle.
But it would be really unwise to say that it was because of Godse's planning that such action could meet its end. Rather it could be said "it was an idea whose time had come!".
There were mounting security issues regarding Gandhi yet nothing substantial was being done. The police force turned lethargic and even his contemporaries felt that Gandhian principles had become anachronistic for Post-independence.
Gandhi himself had lost his zest for living because of Partition and the riots thereafter.
All these laid the foundations for a drama which was enacted by Nathuram Godse!Perhaps!

Monday, February 21, 2005

Happy B'day Mum!!!

When you came into the world, she held you in her arms.
You thanked her by wailing like a banshee.
When you were 1 year old, she fed you and bathed you.
You thanked her by crying all night long.
When you were 2 years old, she taught you to walk.
You thanked her by running away when she called.
When you were 3 years old, she made all your meals with love.
You thanked her by tossing your plate on the floor.
When you were 4 years old, she gave you some crayons.
You thanked her by coloring the dining room table.
When you were 5 years old, she dressed you for the holidays.
You thanked her by plopping into the nearest pile of mud.
When you were 6 years old, she walked you to school.
You thanked her by screaming, "I'M NOT GOING!"
When you were 7 years old, she bought you a baseball.
You thanked her by throwing it through the
next-door-neighbor's window.
When you were 8 years old, she handed you an ice cream.
You thanked her by dripping it all over your lap.
When you were 9 years old, she paid for piano lessons.
You thanked her by never even bothering to practice.
When you were 10 years old, she drove you all day, from
soccer to gymnastics to one birthday party after another.
You thanked her by jumping out of the car and never looking back.
When you were 11 years old, she took you and your friends to the movies.
You thanked her by asking to sit in a different row.
When you were 12 years old, she warned you not to watch certain TV shows.
You thanked her by waiting until she left the house.

Those teenage years
When you were 13, she suggested a haircut that was becoming.
You thanked her by telling her she had no taste.
When you were 14, she paid for a month away at summer camp.
You thanked her by forgetting to write a single letter.
When you were 15, she came home from work, looking for a hug.
You thanked her by having your bedroom door locked.
When you were 16, she taught you how to driver her car.
You thanked her by taking it every chance you could.
When you were 17, she was expecting an important call.
You thanked her by being on the phone all night.
When you were 18, she cried at your high school graduation.
You thanked her by staying out partying until dawn.

Growing old and gray
When you were 19, she paid for your college tuition,
drove you to campus, carried your bags.
You thanked her by saying good-bye outside the dorm so you wouldn't
be embarrassed in front of your friends.
When you were 20, she asked whether you were seeing anyone.
You thanked her by saying, "It's none of your business."
When you were 21, she suggested certain careers for your future.
You thanked her by saying, "I don't want to be like you."
When you were 22, she hugged you at your college graduation.
You thanked her by asking whether she could pay for a trip to Europe.
When you were 23, she gave you furniture for your first apartment.
You thanked her by telling your friends it was ugly.
When you were 24, she met your fiance and asked about your plans for the future.
You thanked her by glaring and growling, "Muuhh-ther, please!"
When you were 25, she helped to pay for your wedding, and she cried and told
you how deeply she loved you.
You thanked her by moving halfway across the country.
When you were 30, she called with some advice on the baby.
You thanked her by telling her, "Things are different now."
When you were 40, she called to remind you of an relative's birthday.
You thanked her by saying you were "really busy right now."
When you were 50, she fell ill and needed you to take care of her.
You thanked her by reading about the burden parents become to their children.

And then, one day, she quietly died. And everything you never did came
crashing down like thunder.

"Rock me baby, rock me all night long."
"The hand who rocks the cradle...may rock the world".
Let us take a moment of the time just to pay tribute/show appreciation to
the person called MOM though some may not say it openly to their mother.
There's no substitute for her. Cherished every single moment.
Though at times she may not be the best of friends, may not agree to our
thoughts, she is still your mother!!!
She will be there for listen to your woes, your braggings, your
frustations, etc.
Ask yourself.....have you put aside enough time for her, to listen to her
"blues" of working in the kitchen, her tiredness???
Be tactful, loving and still show her due respect though you may have a
different view from hers.
Once gone, only fond memories of the past and also regrets will be left.


Inner dialogue

Sonia Gandhi talked about it, I think about it. Inner Dialogue, that is!I guess, in our fast-paced life, inner dialogue is something which could be called a blessing, your own territory!
So you see what I am coming to!Isn't it a blessing that nobody could hear our inner dialogue otherwise life would have been too difficult. You would have to constantly check your thoughts. Talk about freedom of expression...atleast to oneself!
Well, coming back to my inner dialogue, while I was coming to this cyber cafe, I had this thing going on in my mind.Have you ever realised how repressed women are in our society??!!You would see hordes of men drooling over girls or eyeing pretty women, but how many women have you seen doing that on street?Perhaps in our patriarchical society, we are brought up that way! I seriously think there is something wrong somewhere. I do not fight for rights for dressing up (or down?)in whatever way we like, but yeah, I would love to be left alone from constant and irritating male gazes. Thankyou, I could do without them! Perhaps men have not realised yet or nobody has told them yet, but women do not like it at all to be constantly looked upon as 'things'. That is some of my piece of mind.
So I was also telling about movies which I have seen lately. I saw 50 FIRST DATES 2 days back. It was a really cute movie, and I really loovvvvve Drew Barrymore, she is sooooo cute!I wonder if there is really any such disease, and if there is. I would be sad much much more for 10-second Tom. For a romantic movie, it was OK to have such a wife, but imagine how life would be with someone who really forgot everything about you everyday, and everyday you would have to start with a whole lot of explaining. Would you like to do that everyday of your life? I am not sure!
It also happens to be my mum's birthday so

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Father,Son and Holy War

There is a documentary of the same name as above by Anand Patwardhan. I chanced upon it through my class on 'Individual and Indian Society' and I must say, it was really good! Most of all I was impressed by the man's commitment towards he cause. You could read about Anand Patwardhan here.
His War and Peace was recently shown at the Goa Film Festival.
After I saw this documentary, one thing is for sure, that my attitude towards documentaries has really changed. Earlier I used to be completely uninterested towards them. In fact, the last time I participated in FTII Film Festival, I did not go to watch even a single documentary.
Documentaries are in your face. They are gross. But they are as things are!Yeah, at the end of the day it is the director's view. But it tells you something without scripts, without dialogues.
For example, there was this woman from Rajasthan, an illiterate cook, talking about Sati. She had a photograph of Roop Kanwar at the Sati-site on her husband's pyre. In the picture, there was also a photograph of God, and rays from God were falling on Roop Kanwar. When the cook was asked about that photograph, she said she got it at the Sati site and that the photograph was real and that morphing is impossible. The most hilarious pf everything was that she believed that the God's picture was real, otherwise who would believe that God is for real. Also, she said that God is invisible to the naked eye because HE hides behind trees, and it was by chance HE could be clicked in that photograph.It was laughable alright, but it also throws light on the degree to which such illiterate and ignorant people are disillusioned.
There were alternating accounts of Hindus'Sati and Muslims'Talaq. The only thing that was apparent from those accounts was suffering of women in the name of religion, no matter which one! Both the religions claimed that they in fact put their women on pedestal through these ways but the reality reflects in the lives of those who suffer!
In the second part, Hero Pharmacy, there was this sequence where people are celebrating Shivaji Divas, and there was a man telling about the entire decoration. There was this mobile statue of a semi-nude woman aho was bathing. He said that it was Mandakini and it represented the fact that as against earlier times, when fear of Mughal Emperors had made it unsafe for women to bath openly. But after Shivaji, peace resumed and women are no longer unsafe in that way!!!???
I also plan to see 'In the name of God' and if we are fortunate we might be able to hear Mr Patwardhan himself.
As we were informed that he has been into documentary making of this genre for years and he has been harmed physically also to stop him. But it is really admirable that he is continuing all this despite people against his blood.
Read more about Anand Patwardhan's works.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Ek Ruka Hua Faisla

It is a movie by Basu Chatterji. I saw it yesterday night.I got this bit from Google search about the movie............
"This one was inspired by Henry Fonda's Twelve Angry Men. A film entirely devoid of songs , it revolved around twelve men called for jury duty in a murder case. The entire action takes place in a single room in which the jury is deliberating. K.K.Raina excels as the lone dissenter who fights for the defendant's cause and gradually brings the others around."
In my opinion it was an exciting movie, in the sense, it does not show any emotional melodrama but really keeps you stuck because of its plot, story and acting, boss! The 12 characters and most importantly K.K.Raina & Pankaj Kapur, their arguments and counter-arguments keep you interested.
It reminded me of the Group Discussions, which we often indulge in. Anybody would appreciate how K.K.Raina turns the table around from 11 Vs 1 vote. It was really a matter of being clear on your thoughts and arguments! Because most of the times, people want to hide behind others and accept whatever majority says. But the point is "if you do not stand for anything, you will fall for everything".Right?

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Girlie Talk

These days we have so much time on hand that we end up doing nothing but indulging in a bitching session on anybody and everybody. No matter how much we try to understand people, we are seldom successful and we end up criticising them endlessly. It generally takes off from one particular incidence, takes off to another and so on!And trust me it takes a lot of time. You would not realise where time flew off!
Day before yesterday, all three of us (I share a flat with 2 of my classmates) started on a gossip marathon, talking about just anything under the sun. And since I am very interested in filmy gossips (courtesy:film magazines and websites), I share my knowledge with my roomies. It is a good time pass. One of them sleeps midway, but the other, who is very illiterate about actors, actresses and their gossips, sits through these session wide-eyed. I also tell them what is happening in all the serials (, as we do not have TV here, they are so amazed at my knowledge.
So that day we somehow ended up discussing DIL MANGE MORE (the Shahid Kapur starer), and since she sees almost all the movies, she actually narrated the entire story to me. And you know what happened? We ended up driving each other crazy about who played Shahid Kapur's mother in DIL MANGE MORE. And we don't know yet! Everyday, in fact, every night we discuss this issue, rake our brains and then just give up, just to ask somebody the next day. But nobody remembers the mamas in the movies, do they? Most of them have Farida Jala or Himani Shivpuri or Smita Jaikar or Kiron Kher. And there is one more problem. My dearest roomie does not even knows any names of anybody in movies or TV except the lead characters, which means only heros and heroines. So even if I ask her, if she was Smita Jaykar? She would not know, because she does not knows who is she!!!
Everybody fails to understand whay there is so much fuss about Shahid Kapur's screen mum in DIL MANGE MORE!!!But you know na, it is like, you listen to a song somewhere and get crazy finding the name of the movie or the actors!!!

Friday, February 04, 2005

Time Pass

I am now in my 6th and last Trimester. We have 5 subjects. One of them has not been sceduled yet and for the rest 4 we have 2 continuous classes each. One subject in one day and 3 of them are in the latter part of the day, which means after 2 p.m.This great detail was to make you realise how much of free time I have on my hands. There is absolutely nothing to do!!!
So that means reading, reading and more reading! But that also does not actually happen.Thus looking for some part time. Lets see!

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Individual & Indian Society

That is the paper I opted for, this Trimester from the electives. It includes a few movies, books, plays and documentries. The objective of this course is to create awareness about the social aspect and understand social responsibility. Basically, it is an attempt to look at an individual and at society with respect to him.To understand different perspectives and broadening one's horizons by relating it to one's own context. Too abstract, is it?
For example, in the first class, there were a set of statements translated from Marathi in English. These statements said negative things about an individual for example,
"I am scared of doing anything greta. I scare off people doing great things."
"When I was young, I used to park under a 'No Parking' sign and get away by bribing a policeman."
"I behave secretively. I do everything in hiding, without anyone knowing of it."
There were several from the ilk, but my favourite pick was....
"In India in 00 A.D. there was a great movement against dowry. In 1 A.D. there was a great movement against dowry. In 2 A.D. there was a movement against dowry. In 100 A.D. there was a movement against dowry. In 2000 A.D. there was a movement against dowry deaths, in 3000 A.D., 5000 A.D. 50,000 A.D. there was a movement against dowry deaths. In India, in 1 lakh A.D., 1 crore A.D., there was a movement against dowry. In doomsday A.D. in India there was a strong movement against dowry, casteism, poverty, corruption and for an undivided India."
I hope you got the point!