Saturday, March 27, 2010

Namaste! - 2 : Handshake

Did I tell you that I was afraid of girls? I did tell you that in my post 'Namaste!'. This is the second part of the Namaste! series. This is called 'Handshake".

March 21, 2010 : Sunday

I was walking towards the NSS office for the monthly DOS collection. (Those who know what DOS collection is, skip the next para).

DalOilSugar is a monthly collection drive in the IIT campus conducted by the National Service Scheme volunteers. The volunteers go to the residential zone in the campus to get food, clothes, books, toys etc which will be then handed over to an NGO which will redistribute them to needy people.

As I was walking towards the NSS office, a guy stops me and asks the way to Himalaya. Here is the conversation that I had with that guy.

Guy : How can I got to Himalaya building?
Me : You go straight, take a left, again go straight, the building to your left is Himalaya.
Guy : Neenge tamil pesuveegla? (Do you speak Tamil?)
Me : Kocham kochama pesuven. (Little bit)
Guy : Ohk. I am P******t from A**a University. I came here to meet my friend K*****n in Saraswati Hostel. He is in Elec department. Do you know him?
Me : I don't think so. I am in Humanities Department.
Guy : Ohk.. You guys have a big campus.
Me : Yeah. It's 632 acres.
Guy : What's you name btw?
Me : I'm Arun.
Guy : You are from Tamil Nadu?
Me : No. I am from Trivandrum, Kerala.
Guy : Can  you just give me your number?..or just give me a miss call.
Me : Ok.
I give him miss call. We both save the number. I save the number as P******t A**a.
We shake hands and part.
I proceded to the NSS office, satisfied that I helped that guy find Himalayala.

March 22, 2010 : Monday
I was sleeping. Suddenly my phone rings.
P******t A**a calling.
Only half conscious, I took the call.
Guy : Hey Arun. Do you remember me? I am P******t from A**a university.
Me : Eh...Yeah.. I remember you.
Guy : How are you, Arun?
Me : Yeah I am fine.
Guy : I am coming to IIT today to see my friend. Can I meet you?
Guy : Will you be free sometime today evening?
I was becoming very uneasy. Suddenly found a way out.
Me : Oh..sorry. I have a project work to do.
Guy : Oh! I would luvvv to see you project!
Me :'s a group project. There is a group meeting.
Guy : Will you be free at night? After the meeting?
Me : Sorry, I can't say when the meeting will be over.
Gay : In which hostel are you in?
Me : Tap...ti
Gay : Is it near Saraswati?
Me : See, I have to go for the meeting.
Gay : Ohk. Call when you want to see me.
Call disconnected.
OMG! What does this guy/gay want?
Vignesh, my classmate and friends have contacts in A**a university. With two phone calls, he discovers who this guy is and has assured me that if this gay/guy calls me again, it would be taken care of.
I changed the name from P******t A**a to P******t A**a DANGER.
I got two calls from him after that. Both the times, I didnt take the call.

Did I tell you that I was afraid of girls? I did tell you that in my post 'Namaste!'.
In this post Handshake, I am telling you - I am afraid of guys too!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Cabinet Reshuffle

After the first 'performance analysis', I have made minor changes in my Cabinet.

Apologies to anyone if I have offended anyone by giving them (or not giving them) a particular ministry.

Prime Minister
Arun Sudarsan
I will also take care of the Finance Ministry and Defence Ministry.

Prime Minister's Office
Jerin Jacob Mathew (who will also be the Home Minister)
Chandni Chandran (who will also be the Finance Minister)
Sajad S Santhosh (who will be a MoS in the PMO)
My office will be run by my trusted aides

Speaker, Loksabha
Manjari Shankar
With the view of making the Parliament sessions more interesting, we have Manjari as the speaker and Baasma as the deputy speaker.

Deputy Speaker, Lok Sabha
Baasma Parvi

Ministry of External Affairs
Siddharth Srikanth
An exceptionally talented writer, thinker and debater, he is given the task of redefining India’s image at the world stage.

Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs
Angel Jeana
Gautam Ramesh 

His love for Parliamentary behaviour makes him the best choice to see to it that decorum is maintained during the sessions.

Ministry of Human Resources Development
T P Kurian
Binny Alexander
His wide ranging experiences in the education sector will help in my government’s effort to restructure India’s educational setup (to be aided by Binny Alexander)

Ministry of Information and Broadcasting
Former Paparazzi, he will infuse the kind of energy that is required to run this ministry.

Ministry of Food and Agriculture
Suraj Nair
Preshant Sekar
The Grub God as he is affectionately called, Suraj is the most suited person to run this ministry aided by Preshant Sekar.

Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs
Aju Basil James
Amrutha Gayathri
Oviya Govindan
Being excellent players of football, swimming and basketball respectively - the three games that need revival in the country, I hope that Indian Sports will improve under the amble guidance of these minds.

Ministry of Happiness and Grievances Redress
Deepak Johnson
Angel Jeana
Pratyusha Govindaraju
Blessed with special powers to make anyone happy and forget their miseries, Deepak Johnson will head the ministry.

Ministry of Law and Justice
Sneha A

Ministry of Forestry
Sriram Chenji

Ministry of Labour and Employment
Akhil Bharathan O  Ministry comes under the PMO
ABO (as he is affectionately called by his followers) will be the in charge of the Ministry of Labour and Employment, considering his untiring efforts for the Indian working class.

Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (brought under the Ministry of External Affairs)
Sabnam Gafoor

Ministry of Union Capital Territory Affairs
Manish Kumar

Ministry of Water Resources
Polash Mukherjee

Ministry of Women and Child Welfare
Anu Joshy
Amala Devi

Ministry of Information Technology, Gaming and Spying.
Kanishka Bandyopadhyaya

Ministry of Textiles (to be integrated with Ministry of Cultural Affairs)
Chetna Sabnis
Sushmita V G

Ministry of Cabinet Affairs
Sushmita V G
Amala Devi

Ministry of Cultural Affairs
Swathy Kumar
Lakshmi Parvathy

Ministry of Peace (Ministry Abolished)
Sajad S Santhosh
Preshant Sekar
Binny Alexander
Extremely talented in putting peace, these three will rejuvenate the ministry.

Ministry of Absentees (Ministry abolished)
Vikas Gunasekhar

Ministry of Communication
Raisa Sherif

Ministry of Horoscope
Gayathri Mahedran

Ministry of Tourism (newly formed Ministry)
Chetna Sabnis

Ministry of Social Empowerment and Justice
Mohan K

Ministry of Family Planning and Welfare
Gauthaman M

Ministry of Language Studies
Rakhi Kumar

Akhil Bharathan, Gautam Ramesh and Vikas Gunasekhar currently removed from the cabinet. Hopefully they will be re-inducted in the next Cabinet Re-shuffle.

Monday, March 22, 2010

A Blogger's Honesty

Dear Readers,

This post is an attempt to discuss an issue which has manifold manifestations in the public and private lives of bloggers and people in general. During the past few weeks, I have been bombarded with criticism with respect to my posts in this blog. It has been argued that my posts are attempts at self-glorification and achieving 'social gain'. Be what you are - 'don't pretend' is the advice that I am getting from various quarters. In this context, I wish to analyze to what extent I can say truths about myself.

By virtue of being the school leader, I also became the General Coordinator of LAFest 2008, an inter-school Cultural Fest organized by my school.
- from 'Namaste!', my March 18, 2010 post
Prime Minister
Arun Sudarsan
This is my blog and I deserve to be the boss. I will also take care of the Finance Ministry and Defence Ministry.
- from 'My Cabinet', my March 5, 2010 post
When I reached 9th standard, I became the assistant class leader and became known for my 'truthfulness' and was named Gandhi by friend Abraham George.
- from 'Nicks!', my February 13, 2010 post

Seen as my attempts to glorify myself, I will have to humbly reject the argument because these sentences put those posts in its right contexts and did nothing to enhance my 'image'. 

But the pseudo-morality in me prevented me from using these fantastic sites during the first three months of my stay here in Chennai.Soon I realized that there is no use hugging on to my pretentious principles.
- from 'Facebook and me', my February 4, 2010 post.
  • How much of truth about oneself can be posted in a public space like 
  • Since my life is linked with so many other lives, is it appropriate on my part to tell the 'darker' truths about myself involving other people? 
  • Will that be an infringement into their privacy? 
  • Is it necessary that I tell all about myself to the outside world? 

To each of these question, I have an answer.
  • So much that it won't affect your public life. (Isn't this hypocrisy?)
  • It's not appropriate.
  • Yes.
  • No.
Hypocrisy is a feigning to be what one is not. Am I being what I am not by not telling some truths about me? Only I can answer that question since only I know whether the truths I am hiding are in fact contradictory to my actions. And I feel that I am mostly not a hypocrite, but sometimes I am. 

I need your opinion on this. How honest can we be about ourselves in the public? How honest should we be in the public? What information about oneself comes under the realm of privacy? What to be shared, what not to be? 


Thursday, March 18, 2010


Having spent 8 years in Loyola School Trivandrum, a boys only Higher Secondary school, I had become the sort of guy who was very shy to look at girls (for the fear of being considered an ogler), a guy who was very shy to speak to girls (because I never spoke with girls of my age apart from my cousins during this 8 year long period) and a guy who dreaded learning with them after passing out of school. I remember not giving sweets on my birthday to the girls in my Physics tuition class because I was afraid to approach them. I remember my 'namastes' to avoid handshakes. A small incident from my life is given below.

By virtue of being the school leader, I also became the General Coordinator of LAFest 2008, an inter-school Cultural Fest organized by my school. Below given is a phone conversation I had with one prominent girl in Holy Angels school about the festival.

A (that's me) and M (that's her)
A: Hello, I had got a missed call from this number. May I kindly know who this is?
M: Oh yeah.. I am M calling from Holy Angels School. Had a few doubts regarding the festival.
A: O K Madam. Please carry on.
M: Don't call me madam, I am just a student.
A: O K Madam.
M: Eh..OK. Can you please extend the last date for submission of the entry form?
A: Differential treatment is not possible madam. The last date is fixed as Monday. You should send the forms to us by Monday evening.
M: Ohk.. Thank you.
A: Good night Madam.

Anybody who doesn't know why she being a student from Holy Angels is important, then here is the 'funda'. Holy Angels is 'the' prominent girls only school in the city. Loyola is 'the' prominent boys only school.

May 15, 2009
HSEE results are out.
Finally, I was moving into a Co-Ed institution.

August 6, 2009
First day at IIT
Our Faculty Advisor Sudarsan Padmanabhan was taking us around the institute. I was consciously avoiding talking to and walking with girls when suddenly Sabnam Gafoor, my classmate came up to me and asked "You are a very serious guy, aren't you?". Taken aback by that question, it took me a while before regaining composure. But by that time, she had walked away, clearly unimpressed by my response.

I found it very difficult to adjust to the co-ed system initially. I was not used to girls shouting out answers in class or trying to impress the faculty with myriad techniques. (Madam, I have published a collection of my essays on Pottery). But in due course, I got adjusted to the reality that I have to be here in the institution for five long years.

Now, after six months of studying together with 'the-other', I don't feel the same way I felt last August. But a tinge of shyness, timidness still remains in me which I think will get solved in the years to come.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Stop a nuclear disaster

Hi ,

Our government is churning out one hazardous bill after another. This time it is a bill called the Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage, and it's coming up for a vote in a couple of days.

The bill lets U.S. corporations off the hook for any nuclear accidents they cause on Indian soil. They'd only have to pay a meagre amount, and Indian taxpayers would be stuck paying crores for the nuclear clean up and to compensate the victims.

Without any public debate, the Prime Minister is appeasing American interests and ignoring our safety.

Greenpeace is launching a petition asking the PM to hold a public consultation before introducing the bill.

I have already signed this petition. Can you join me?


You are receiving this email because someone you know sent it to you from the Greenpeace site. Greenpeace retains no information about individuals contacted through its site, and will not send you further messages without your consent -- although your friends could, of course, send you another message.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Black Comedy - A DoHSS Production

Visit for more details!

A Stable Pakistan and India

When the then President of United States Bill Clinton visited India in 2000, he observed that the Indian Subcontinent is a ‘nuclear flashpoint’. Though this observation invited immediate condemnation from his Indian Counterpart K R Narayanan, it remains a truth that the mutual distrust between two of the youngest nuclear weapon nations in the world is a matter of grave concern. While there is no reason to worry about the security of India’s nuclear weapons falling into wrong hands, it’s not beyonddoubt whether Pakistan, currently led by a fragile civilian Government under the strict watch of its independent Army and the ISI, can safeguard its warheads from extremist elements. This concern is shared by India and the United States, two of the main stakeholders in the affairs of Pakistan. They believe that only a ‘stable’ Pakistan can ensure the safety and security of more than 1.5 billion people of the subcontinent. Pakistan, from it very birth in 1947 along with India, has remained an unstable democracy. During the 63 years of independence, the nation was under military rule for 33 years, the last phase culminating with General Pervez Musharraf resigning from the Army and handing over the baton to Ashfaq Parvez Kayani. The civilian government under Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani went through tough times when PML-N withdrew its outside support, but has managed to survive till date. The power struggle between the Premier and the President Zardari also raised doubts on who exactly is in control of the nation. With contradictory statements coming out from the two offices, Indian PM while on a visit to the United States last November said, “I do not think whether we have a partner right now. I think when General Pervez Musharraf was there (president of Pakistan), I was to ask him and he said well I am the army, I represent the armed forces, and I represent the people. Now I do not know whom to deal with. It is not clear if the president is in charge of the army.”The present indications from Pakistan, though seems clearer with the Zardari neutralised and Gilani asserting his powers as the Prime Minister. But whether a stable neighbour is in the best of our interest is still a topic being debated. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is the strongest advocate of talks with Pakistan, asserting that the only alternative to talks is war. The fact that the recent Foreign Secretary level talks went on despite the Pune blasts indicate this paradigm shift in India’s position since the November 2008 Mumbai attacks. Despite overwhelming support within the administration for the ongoing talks with Pakistan, there arises a historical inaccuracy regarding the stability of our sister nation helping to bring peace to our nation. When Pakistan broke-up in 1971 resulting in the formation of Bangladesh, 20 years of peace followed. With no funding from the earlier East Pakistan, rebels in Nagaland and Mizoram died down. From Kashmir Insurgency to Kargil War to the attack on Indian Parliament, all happened when Pakistan was either under a civilian rule or a stable military rule. If at all India is supporting the secessionist movement in the Baloch province, our has nothing but gains from it. Because it is beyond reasonable doubt, that a stable Pakistan, is not in the interest of India.

P.S: This article doesn't conform to my views. I am in support of a stable, democratic Pakistan and for talks between the warring nieghbours.