Thursday, 18 April 2013

Love At First Sight

The 3rd story of  my 10 love stories is based on true events that happened to one of my friend. The story is an old one. Its when he was in school. His family then lived in a village in Sambalpur District of Odisha, India.

His previous school had been a Boy's high school, where he had continued till 7th class. But his new school was a co-ed one. It had 2 storeys with 14 class rooms and and one room for  office.But I don't get the point of having separate schools for Boys and Girls. I think by having separate schools, we are promoting gender discrimination. And it would be quite boring attending classes in absence of students from opposite gender. There is no incentive to work hard and get good marks. There are no rewards for finishing your home work before time. In the real world, both genders co-exist. So, why the need for such schools??

So lets return to our story, My friend was quite good in studies. He was the class topper in his previous school. He continued his good performance in his new school too. At the end of class 8 , he was  again the class topper.

During , summer vaccation before the start of  new academic session, her family got shifted to the village. She was admitted to his school and coincidentally in his class. My friend had missed the first week of 9th class due to illness. So he was naturally, the last one to meet her. Upon reaching school he heard everyone talking about her beauty. When he first saw her, he knew why she had become the center of everyone's attention. She was the prettiest girl he had seen (Don't expect me to describe the girl as i haven't met her or  i did not  ask him to describe the girl). It was love at first sight. He was speechless for some moments. But didn't share his feelings with anyone, he feared she might not appreciate his love and out rightly reject him. Six months passed by he just kept staring at her.

He then decided to give a try. He followed a strategy what i call is "Indirect Approach".I call it so because  in this strategy you don't directly approach the girl and express your feelings.Rather you take help of her friends, who poison her mind in your favour. But theirs a risk this strategy, many times guys end up the friend, rather than the girl. So, what experts of love do is they make this friend their "Rakhi" sister. The good thing about this strategy is it protects one from public humiliation. After proposal, sometimes girls slap you or yell at you. There are many other strategies which i will talk in my later stories.

Slowly on the influence of her friends, she began talking with him.But in those days boys and girls sat on different sides of the class. Instances of quarrels between the two sides were frequent. The worst punishment in those days was asking a boy to sit among girls. I remember when i was in 6th class our class teacher, in order to bring discipline in the class, decided that boys and girls sit in alternate rows.

But my friend against all odds, was slowly gaining her confidence but their conversation was for brief period usually after the school got over.Then they would go to their respective homes. But they cherished these small moments that life offered them with. In villages you don't have parks or CCDs to hang out. Also families in villages lived quite close to each other, it was a like an extended family. If anyone sees you roaming with a girl, irrespective of what your intention was, news will reach your home faster than you reaching your home. And parents will welcome you home with brooms and sticks. It will be thrashing worth remembering.

To add to it, there are jealous love rivals. They are a breed of degenerate human beings who know they can not have the girl, so they try their best to sabotage others chances. One of them indirectly informed his parents about their relationship, but his parents didn't give much attention, thought he was exaggerating . But the class teacher in 10th class discovered it. He called him and warned him that he was doing the wrong thing at the wrong time. But he was in no mood to listen any of those non sense lectures, he was madly in love. He even had a bet with the teacher, he said i will prove you wrong by excelling in studies while being in relationship with her. He proved his point in pre-Board exam. But he failed in the Board exam.. Although he scored good marks, but 3 others from his class had scored more than him. His parents blamed the girl for his failure. He was sent to town for further studies and he never met her again. He last heard of her that she was a teacher in some school, but another friend said she was getting married to some businessman. His only repentance was he could never say a proper goodbye.


Saturday, 6 April 2013

RTE Act: A Closer Look

RTE Act otherwise known as "The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act"  was passed by the Indian parliament on 4 August 2009. This acts aims to provide free and compulsory education of all children in the age group of six to fourteen years as a Fundamental Right.

The main features of this Act are:
It prohibits (a) physical punishment and mental harassment; (b) screening procedures for admission of children; (c) capitation fee; (d) private tuition by teachers and (e) running of schools without recognition,
  • Right or children to free and compulsory education till completion of elementary education( class 8th) in a neighborhood school.
  • Right of transfer to other schools
  • It makes provisions for a non-admitted child to be admitted to an age appropriate class.
  • It is the duty and responsibility of appropriate Governments, local authority and parents in providing free and compulsory education. It also ensures the sharing of financial and other responsibilities between the Central and State Governments.
  • It prohibits (a) physical punishment and mental harassment; (b) screening procedures for admission of children; (c) capitation fee; and (d) running of schools without recognition,
  • Unaided Schools i.e. privately owned schools should admit in class 1, a minimum of 25% of the strength of the class, from children belonging to weaker sections and disadvantaged group.These schools should have school management committee. 75% of the members should be parents.
  • It lays down the norms and standards relating  to Pupil Teacher Ratios (PTRs), buildings and infrastructure, school-working days, teacher-working hours.
Pupil Teacher Ratio
Classes                    Children                         No. of Teachers
1st-5th                     0-60                                  2
                               61-90                                3
                               91-120                              4
                              121-200                             5
                                >150                               5+headmaster
                                >200                                PTR< 40
6th-8th                                                            Atleast one teacher per class.
                                                                       at least one teacher each for- 
                                                                       (a) Science and Mathematics.         
                                                                       (b) Social Studies; (c) Languages.
                                                                        PTR<35
                                 >100                               a full time Head-teacher
                                                                        Part Time instructors for Art
                                                                        P.E.T. and Work Education.
                                                                       
                                                                        
Buildings
All-weather building consistmg of-
 (1) at least one class-room for every teacher and an office-cum-store-cum-Head teacher's room; 
 (2) barrier-free access; 
 (3) separate toilets for boys and girls; 
 (4) safe and adequate drinking water facility to all children; 
 (5) a kitchen where mid-day meal is cooked in the school; 
 (6) Playground;
 (7) arrangement for securing the school building by boundary wall or fencing.

Min. School-working days:  200 working days, 800 hrs for 1st-5th
                                               220 working days, 1000 hrs for 6th-8th 

 Min. Teacher-working hours: 45 hrs

Criticisms:

  • The definition of elementary education is itself faulty. It states Elementary education is upto 8th class. What will a child do studying till 8th class. It doesn't make any sense .It should be made till 10th class.  Most importantly what about those 25% children in private unaided schools. What will happen to them???
  • This act excludes the state J&K. I don't understand why our successive govts. have treated J&K separate from the rest of the country.
  • Section 16 of the RTE Act states that no child shall be failed in any class or expelled from school till he or she completes elementary education. This will surely reduce the quality of students as there is no incentive for them to study. Recent studies have concluded steady fall in standards of education. Exams used to act as a feedback mechanism for both students and teachers.
  •  Schools which do not have a certificate of recognition from the local authority or government shall no longer be allowed to function. There are lot of private unrecognized schools, although they lack infrastructure like playground and permanent building, the education imparted there is better than many govt. schools. The Act calls for shutting down such schools, which will inherently lead to corruption, as shutting schools is in no one's best interest. The parents will also have to  bear the money paid as bribes to inspecting authorities.
  • 25% reservation is made for children belonging to weaker sections and disadvantaged group. The Govt. reimburse the private unaided schools based on  per-child expenditure in government schools. So it is quite obvious the schools will increase the fees for the rest 75%. Also there is no clarity about the weaker sections and disadvantaged group. What will happen if there are less than 25% applicants from weaker sections and disadvantaged group? Will the seats remain vacant???
  • Section 24 of the Act is concerned about the standards of teachers, While it is encouraging that Delhi, Karnataka, Himachal Pradesh, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu have over 96 per cent professionally qualified teachers there are other States that have less than 70 per cent.
  • Section 17 of the act prohibits physical punishment and mental harassment on children. While the ban on physical punishment is appropriate, there is no proper definition to what constitutes mental harassment. 

Friday, 30 March 2012

STORY 2-A GIRL'S TALE




My last Story was about a boy,So i think it should be appropriate to write  about a girl, otherwise you  may accuse me of gender biasing.This story is a girl's narration.Before i start her narration i will briefly introduce her,She is a lovely girl with a beautiful and innocent smile that touches her eyes.A soothing and Lively voice.Charming yet down to earth.In short a combination of beauty and brains.
               
                  Lets start with the narration "We have been in relationship for last 5yrs.He was a senior in my office  ,So  had the oppurtunity to go abroad earlier than me.He has been there for the last 2 yrs.They say long distance relationships dont work,but it works perfectly if you have proper understanding and ready to make sacrifices.In our case we had to make lot of sacrifices to keep our relationship ticking .We have changed our sleeping schedules just to talk to each other,because we live in different time zones.But today something  unusual has happened.He hasn’t called me up since morning. It’s already been 11 a.m. Last night even though we talked for more than four hours, never did he bother to wish me a valentines day. We talked about everything - starting from his day in his office, the verbal fight with his boss to that creepy guy in my office who never misses an opportunity to talk to me. Everything. Because we share every bit of the day we spent, every evening. Just to catch up with the parts of our daily life that the other person missed. We have had our share of experiences in life and we both realized it the hard way that this sharing is much needed and is for the better. Yesterday, it was just another evening, for him. No matter how much I had planned for this, how beautifully I dreamt of this evening, it didn’t matter. It didn’t happen.

                     Of course he, as usual, would have got up early in the morning for his office and would have drowned himself inside binary world of objects and pointers by now. Or may be he would be sitting by that new girl “helping her with the codes”, a vision I hate to the core of my heart. He must have totally forgotten me. He must have forgotten that today it’s a Valentine’s Day. Or even that it’s the day that I said a “yes” to his proposal. All the guys are the same. These little things never matter to them. All that bothers them is what “profit” they are going to get from doing something. I even doubt if he really cares for me. Somehow it feels that the “yes” was all that mattered to him and as soon as he heard the confirmation, it all has grown up to be a big fat daily formality. I don’t even remember him saying a “I love you” without a “too” suffixed.

                   He never does anything first. I don’t even have hopes that he would wish me the Valentine’s Day first. I have received 15 sms’s and 5 calls since morning. My friends have wished me the day. He is not anymore going to be the first one to wish me. I doubt if at all he will be the first guy.This is what he does to me. All my dreams have gone for a toss, yet again. Just like it happened on the New Year’s Day. The reason being, he doesn’t believe in such celebrations. How can he be so insensitive and unromantic? When we were friends, he felt so warm and loving. And now, it’s so cold. All that bothers him is if any guy proposed me or even said something to me. I fear if I have made a mistake in falling for him. It’s been 1. Half of the day is over. And he won’t call me up.

             As soon as I enter the cafeteria with my friend, my phone rings up. I just hope that it’s him. Nope. It’s not him. It’s the office security. I wonder why would they call me.Well, there’s a package for delivery. I hope it’s from him. Nope, the security guard says, it’s that book by Herbert Schildt , I had asked him to order for me from Flipkart. I will pick it up after lunch.

After almost half an hour, I, carrying my depressed soul, go to the office security to receive the book. lo and behold!.. There he is.. There he is.. Standing by the security guard is the guy I have missed since the morning. The guy I love so much. The only person who is capable of melting my heart like butter running down on a toast. I just run to him. He hugs me.A touch that I have missed for so so so long. (I hope the security guard wasn’t watching us.) It’s been 3 months since I felt that way. 3 months since we met last. We stay far apart from each other. A thousand miles apart. And I can’t believe he came all the way this morning just to be with me.
He is there. Right in front of me. I would love to capture this moment someway only if my bewildered self would stop running right into his arms and allow me to take a picture or two with him (something that I really miss and rarely do I get a picture with him).

         Without being able to think anything straight, I ask him, “Would you take me home?” “Definitely” he says.Oh gosh!!.. I always wanted to run away from the office with him. And his reply was so assuring. His words always are. No wonder I totally fell for him.“Just wait here for a minute. I would rush in and get my purse.” I tell him.
As soon as I start walking into the office, he calls me from behind, saying “And by the way, Happy Valentine’s Day.”
I talked to myself, “Come on sweetheart. That’s absolutely unnecessary. I don’t bother if it’s the Valentines day. It’s just so mind-blowing awesome that you are here.”

                  One way to home, with lots and lots of detours just to linger the journey, I speak my thoughts aloud “You know, you’re such a sweetheart.”
“Of course, I am. Why else on earth would be with me in my car right now?”
“Love you.. By the way, you came this morning? How much did that cost you? It must have been a hefty air-fare. And you missed your office!!.. No wonder, you’re so careless. What was the necessity? You could’ve just wished me the day.. You didn’t have to fly all the way to here.. ”
“Cause you know I’d walk a thousand miles, if I could just see you.. tonight..”
And i felt in the background was my most favorite music :
                         "If I could fall into the skies,
                          Do you think time would pass us by?
                          'Cause you know I'd walk a thousand miles,
                          If I could just see you..
                          Tonight..."

Friday, 3 February 2012

Chapter 2-The Comeback

This is continuation of my first story(http://pratyutpannadasspeaks.blogspot.com/2012/01/chapter-1.html)




Time passed by, the gal had moved up in the corporate hierarchy.She was now a Project Manager.She now led a sophisticated life in some metro.She had a nice house and a wonderful new car.Everything in her life was  rosy.

But what about the boy, was he dead??
I had previously thought so  ,but i was wrong.It was just a rumour .Although he was diagnosed with leukaemia, he had survived, thanks to a benevolent gentleman,who paid for his treatment.But this "benevolent gentleman" was not really a gentleman ,he was involved in many illegal activities like betting,gambling,money laundering,arms dealing  etc. I have to call him “Gentleman” because our law states that “you are not a criminal until and unless you are proven guilty in a court of law”.Many times he had been tried but never ever any conclusive evidence had been found against him.But for the boy he was god.The boy helped him in his illegal business because he owed his life to that “Gentleman”.But illegal money brings with it many enemies who are always ready to harm you and if possible kill you.One night they were attacked by their rivals, All were dead except 5.The boy was one among the lucky 5 who had survived that night.The boy being educated  was the obvious choice to lead the gang.But he was left with few million dollars and some contacts.He had no men no organisation.He can no longer compete with his rivals.He had to look for greener pastures elsewhere. He saw a window of opportunity in Arab spring.Dictators in Tunisa and Egypt had been overthrown by populist revolution.Libya was little different,Gaddaffi tried violent means to crub the revolution.The Rebels couldn’t give it up so easily.It was heading for a civil war.Rebels needed arms and food to fight  Gaddaffi ,if  he supported their cause ,they upon winning ,will grant him exclusive  rights to Libyan oil wells.He met various rebel leaders and made deals with them.But the Rebels were too disorganised to challenge the might of Gaddaffi.He United the Rebels under a single banner called the “National Transitional Council” or in short NTC.He used his contacts to procure arms from european markets and smuggled into Libya.The war intensified with Financial assistance from various Gulf  Nations.But Rebels were steadily losing ground as Gaddaffi had more money and better organisation.He had already put all his money into this war.If  NTC lost it ,He will be back to his old life of poverty and suffering. He had to do something, the something that will redefine history.He made secret agreements with The French and The Germans. They agreed to help NTC ,but they won’t be involved in direct war.As per agreement NATO began airstrikes.The Rebels now equipped with superior weapons and training started to gain lost grounds.It was now becoming obvious that the Mighty Gaddaffi’s end was near.After two months of intense NATO bombing The Libyan Strongman was atlast captured and killed by Rebels.He and NTC were now victors.He was no longer “He” ,”he” had now assumed a name “Francis John”.NTC consisted of various dissimiliar tribes who were united by their hatred for Gaddaffi.But once Gaddaffi was gone they had nothing in common and were now challenging the very existence of NTC. Francis John again had to do his part.He murdered some of the Rebels who had become a threat to the ideologies of NTC.But he kept his promise with his allies in NATO.They were given what they were promised and he got more than what he deserved.
   Within 2yrs of  the revolution various companies like Francis Oil,Francis Energy,Francis Petrochemicals owned By Francis had sprung up .He was now not just a rich man ,But a rather influential man.He had powerful Friends in Paris,Berlin,Tripoli,Damascus,Baghdad,Delhi.Even some say he had friends in the US Senate. He was awarded honorary  french citizenship for his services during the war. The poor Indian was now The rich European. He diversified his business and started a holding company called Francis Money. He then acquired a lot of companies, the famous among them being the SABC(South African Broadcasting Corporation). The idea sounded a little strange to me because his business was concentrated mainly in North Africa, Europe, Arab world and South-East Asia. When People go for diversification, they rarely go for change is geographical location. I would not have been  surprised if He had bought Al Jazeera, Arab world's famous media brand.But rich people are little weird and think out of the box and ahead of their times,thats why they are rich.
          
                   While all this was happening, He still remembered Her, every day, every moment of his life. He tried to search Her but it was difficult to search a girl in this big world. He had no ideas about Her whereabouts. He searched Her in Orkut but She had not used it for years. He then tried Facebook but the damn privacy settings didn't allow him to view any details. He wondered why do girls have account in social networking sites if they don't want to socialize. I'm not sure whether it was a mere coincidence or a well laid out strategy but the fact is that the girl's client are SABC.
                           
                   One wise man once said "rich people are rich because they don't work for money, they make money work for them".

                   Even it seemed the God conspired to make them meet. They met at SABC's annual meeting party at The Taj Hotel. After 6 long years of separation, He finally saw Her. She was looking different, beautiful than ever. She was neither wearing any rings on Her ring finger nor She had put on Sindoor(a traditional red or orange-red colored cosmetic powder from the Indian subcontinent, usually worn by married women along the parting of their hair.). All this indicated that She was still single. While He was thinking how to talk to her, Her boss came and introduced both. Upon introduction the girl said, "Yes I know him, He is Francis John". He had hoped atleast She would recognize the true him. But how would she have recognised him.  He has changed a lot in appearance and taste, He no more wears  discounted garments from the departmental store. Now brands like Armani, Gucci and Rolex were sharing shelf space in His wardrobe. The girl introduced someone from the crowd, "meet my fiance". She proudly said, "He works for McKinsey firm and is an IIM-A allumni". In that very moment all his hopes were dashed. At first He thought to erase the very existence of "The fiance", nothing could have happened to him, his friends at Delhi could have ensured his immunity. But he saw happiness and joy in her eyes. He loved Her and wanted to see Her happy. So He walked away..

Friday, 20 January 2012

Chapter 1:Die Liebesgeschichte

This is the first part of my 10 part series, "10 love stories". Before I start my narration, let me clear, I don't exactly understand what love is? Even big people, I mean intellectual ones aren't sure about its meaning.

“How on earth are you ever going to explain in terms of chemistry and physics so important a biological phenomenon as first love?”
— Albert Einstein



So I wont be drawing any conclusions, I will be just narrating, Its you to decide and debate whether its love or not. Here goes my first narration:


College is a place where most love stories start, some go into commit state and some rollback. There was this college where many boys and girls "studied", one of them is my story's protagonist. He was second to jack of all trades, if you are getting what I mean. He was leading  an ordinary routine life. Some months later He saw Her. She was lean and thin, dusky in complexion, not so attractive to many eyes. Somehow she drew his attention. It was strange on his part because he had always liked chubby girls. He thought that attraction was Love!! Time  passed on,one day he met her at a book store, They exchanged glances. She added him on Orkut. They used to chit-chat.There he came to know that there was much difference in there ideologies. She liked SRK but He had never watched any of SRK movies. He thought they should celebrate differences and enjoy similarities.Even the gal bought the same mobile which he was using ,he was sure this was love.But it was just mere coincidence.She used to meet him near the bus stop,they would exchange glances and sometimes have casual talk.Once he was going for a match, and she wished her luck,he played better than on other days.So he assumed she was lucky for her.But truth is every dog has his day.It was all like a dream for him.
     He like Adolf Hitler thought this dream will never end.But both were wrong.One fine morning he woke up and checked the gal's profile.He found her account had one friend less than the previous night.He thought that it was someone else, later he realized it was him. He tried to find the reason behind the sudden change in her behavior, but she didn't respond to his mails. He even tried to talk to her but she simply walked away. He asked her friends, they said she unfriended him because she had heard  rumours that he loved her. Her friends mocked him with strange questions, "Who are you?", "What do you think of yourself?". He wondered is Love all about marks, scores and grades!!! Is Love about success and failure or something more than that.
                                                    For some months He went into a state of pain. Time was the only medicine for his sufferings. Years passed on, college was over, the girl got a job in a MNC. The boy did odd jobs until he was diagnosed with Leukemia. I last heard of him that he had died on the banks of Ganga. I am not sure whether He was purified by dying on the banks of Ganga or the Ganga got purified by His death. 

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

ENDORSEMENT: GOOD OR BAD FOR STARS

Today i read the TOI article about movie stars getting more money from endorsements than movies.Some other days  you must  have come across articles by prominent sports analyst ,blaming poor performance of cricket players on excessive ads.They argue that ,the valuable time that could have been spent on training and practice is wasted in doing endorsement.

But in my opinion it is not a retarder rather its an accelerator.Think yourself to be a business man or CEO of the company which is going to hire stars,will you by any chance hire a fading star or a not so well  performing star.I think most of us will say no.You won't hire Irfan Pathan.You will  prefer to associate with some one who is at his zenith.Even if his price is astronomically high  or if you have financial constraints you will choose a professional ad model.This process of reward and punishment makes him work harder.They are ready to go the extra mile.
Secondly stars have to be more responsible in their behavior.They can't no more afford pub fighting, drunken driving , assaults on servants or other people or any kind of scandals.Its because no one wants to associate himself with someone like Shiney Ahuja,Companies will prefer stars with clean image.

ONE RULE GOVERNS THIS WORLD "SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST ONE"



 

Sunday, 15 May 2011

A Beautiful Girl

Today I am going to narrate a story, that is true to best of my knowledge.The story is about a girl, I had met  some years  ago.I always had a wrong notion that a beautiful girl’s life is full of joy,she faces no problem. Her life is like a fairy tale.I watched a movie called “malena” ,where a beautiful girl was harrased by others ,who were jealous of her beauty.Then,I thought it happens only in movies ,untill I met this girl.
I first saw her at a tution. she is one of the most elegant looking fairies. she appears to me as a verdant garden full of blissful flowers. Her smile enthralls my imagination, it seems like a hundred suns beeming to the sky.
I saw her every other day at my tution.I was attracted by her looks.I wanted to talk to her,but she was always surrounded by her friends and I didn’t have guts to approach  her.I feared her friends could make fun  of me.This continued for two sems.After which I heard she had a bf.So, I felt it would be just waste of my time in trying to persuade her.I also feared her bf might react.He might hurt me,all of us how possessive Indian males are.
I met her again some time later at the same venue,but this time I had the courage to say hii to her,she also replied in a pleasant way by saying hello.I perceived from her million dollar  smile that she was quite happy and settled in her life.
Time passed we met again.this time via internet.Now,I was lot bold , I straight asked about her relationship.first of all she denied,then avoided the question,but at last narrated her  woeful  story of pain ,agony and suffering.Her bf although very rich and handsome ,is abusive and too much possesive.He has threatened to her of dire consequences if she tries to leave her.He even physically abuses her if she doesnot pick her phone or fails to meet him at the right time.But still then she wants to continue with him.I personally feel ,she loves him too dearly and had perhaps gone too far down the line to break the relationship.This wasn’t the end of her sufferings.She had many unsuccessful lovers who verbally abused her in college.There were also some shameless teachers in her college who proposed her.One of them even wrongly implicated  her of stealing.She denied the charges ,but no one listened to her, the college authorities harrased her a lot.I believe she was speaking the truth, she was too nice a fellow the steal things.I admit she wasn’t perfect.She was utterly lazy. But she can’t be a thief.

I don’t know what’s the end of her painful story.I hope it has a happy ending.But one thing is for sure resource isn’t  everything, resource utilisation is the most important thing.