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Archive for the ‘Social Media’ Category

How difficult or challenging it may be to become Chetan Bhagat? In other words, what it feels like to be Chetan Bhagat. Chetan Bhagat is not new to controversies. Whether controversies love him or he loves them is difficult to say. Those who follow Chetan Bhagat on Twitter, read his articles and books and watch films based on his books know that Chetan Bhagat and controversies are always within kissing distance of each other.

One wrong or politically incorrect word in a tweet can land him in a controversy. This is what seems to have happened today. Nowadays the word ‘rape’ sends a chill when used in public discourse or in a tweet. Due to two incidents of gang rapes in the recent past, there are those who believe that the use of word ‘rape’ must be avoided at all costs. And if a celebrity and a Youth Icon like Chetan Bhagat who has lakhs of followers on Twitter ought to think more than twice before using the R word in a tweet that’s likely to get hundreds of RTs and Favourites.

While slamming the slide of rupee, he used the R word in a tweet. Unfortunately, the ill-fated tweet stirred up hornet’s nest and outrage was so deafening that he had to delete that tweet. This spontaneous outrage over the use of R word in a tweet by a best selling author raises many serious questions.

It is agreed that rape is a beastly crime and the rapist deserves the harshest possible punishment. By committing rape, a rapist violates not only his victim’s dignity but her entire existence. Those who follow the current affairs would know that Indian rupee has been falling as if there were no tomorrow. This unabated fall of rupee is raising serious concerns. Economists are worried at this alarming trend and to make the matter worse, there’s no trick in sight to arrest the fall of rupee. The ruling class is equally clueless and what we get from the powers that be are false assurances and free advice to remain calm even as the rupee fall continues to break all previous records.

Now if this brazen disregard with which the ruling class is dealing with the falling rupee is not rape of rupee, then what is it? If Chetan Bhagat demands punishment for this continuous rape of rupee, what’s the problem? Why should he be subjected to the lectures on the usages of certain words in popular discourse? There’s an entire army of self-proclaimed conscience keepers out there against Chetan Bhagat and his use of R word in a tweet. Are they not going overboard in taking him to task?

In spite of incidents of rapes in metros like New Delhi and Mumbai, the Hindi films often portray heroes stalking heroines with a view to wooing them. This is exactly what rapists are supposed to do. They stalk their victims before striking. Why doesn’t anybody raise their voice against such scenes in films that glorify stalking? There are songs in which heroes tease heroines and call them by names. This type of behaviour in real life amounts to eve-teasing if emulated on streets. Why don’t we ever hear even so much as a whimper of protest against such songs?

Nothing can justify these potshots against Chetan Bhagat. His tweet was subjected to unfair scrutiny, criticism and vilification. It is sad to see that he had to delete that tweet because his detractors were out their with knives to misinterpret it. Another sad thing is he often gets unsolicited advice on English grammar and usage of right words at the right places on public platforms like Twitter.

It must really be extremely tough to be Chetan Bhagat. One wonders how he copes with so much scrutiny and not to mention unfair criticism. But he often comes across as a brave underdog who keeps doing his job no matter what others think and say about him. He doesn’t mind getting pilloried. Maybe he knows that what great heights he has achieved both as a popular writer of fiction and a Youth Icon are exactly what not many (read his detractors) can digest. And this is precisely why his path will continue to be infested with thorns.

Poor Chetan Bhagat. He is someone who keeps dodging bullets and yet manages to write best selling novels that get converted into super-hit films and columns that create controversies and debates. As I’ve often argued on this platform, if Chetan Bhagat’s detractors are successful in muting or dumbing down Chetan Bhagat’s spontaneity, then Twitter won’t be half of as much fun as it is today.

I wish his detractors are forced to eat an humble pie yet another time and Chetan Bhagat comes out smelling of roses this time too.

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Today is a sad day in the history of our democratic country. Rupee keeps crashing further. Sonia Gandhi took ill but thanks to our super specialists’ timely efforts, she returned home hale and hearty. The icing on the cake was the revelation that Robert Vadra the first son-in-law of our country is merely a small farmer. Not only India but the entire world is in shock at this revelation.

Robert Vadra has been in the news recently for all the wrong reasons. There are many who believe that Robert Vadra has made a lot of wealth and his personal net worth has sky rocketed ever since UPA’s reign at the Centre. So many op-eds have come out speculating his personal net worth and its mysterious sources.

But today mother of all revelations has proved in a single stroke that Robert Vadra is a poor victim of malicious campaign against him. He is a thorough and thorough gentleman who works as a small farmer somewhere back in the beyond. His personal net worth has always remained a big zero. On the other hand, like any other small farmer of this country even he has a debt of several thousand rupees on him. It is said that to pay off that small debt he approached several banks without revealing his famous mother-in-law and brother-in-law’s names. Obviously, the banks have turned out his request for loans. And as a result, poor Robert Vadra aka small farmer is forced to live in penury.

This is not some propaganda on the eve of general election. Nor this revelation is a ploy to repair ruling party’s both image and credibility. But the small farmer act of Robert Vadra is a hard hitting fact in the face of those who were projecting him as a multi millionaire son-in-law who was out to grab everything. As the news of Robert Vadra’s real vocation spread like a wildfire, the self proclaimed political analysts and so-called sources close to the first family were out there to enlighten anyone who cared to listen how this could benefit Congress party.

All said and done, if Robert Vadra is living like a small farmer with his in-laws running the country, it speaks volumes about their ruling capabilities. There are some former ministers who held important portfolios a few months back and who have successfully eradicated poverty from its very root. They are in a comfortable position. Their near and dear ones are also able to secure their livelihoods and there’s no immediate threat to their well heeled future. If the ministers could do this, why couldn’t the rulers themselves? This is really puzzling.

The well-wishers of Dynasty are in a terrible shock. They want the first son-in-law to be in a comfortable position. Instead of working in the field under the harsh sun rays, what they would like to see is Robert Vadra sporting imported goggles, posing for glossy magazines in tight fitting, muscle rippling t-shirts next to imported cars and bikes.

Who would like to see the only son-in-law in tattered dhoti and torn vest standing next to buffaloes and cows wiping mud from his unshaven face?
As a sycophant of the ruling Dynasty, I hope that the Republic of India will be spared those devastating images (if there are any).

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The Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mr. Omar Abdullah is a passionate cricket lover these days. He’s following the national side’s selection process quite closely nowadays. Today he went one step further. He aired his opinion on Twitter as to who should be picked up and dropped from the playing eleven.

Needless to say this unsolicited advice has obviously not gone down well with many cricket fans and he has drawn a lot of flak. The question is why is cricket Mr. Omar Abdullah’s new found love? Why this sudden interest in cricket and the functioning of national side?

Well, the answer is for the ongoing India-Zimbabwe series, the national selectors have picked a promising cricketer Parvez Rasool who hails from Jammu & Kashmir. And as it turns out, Mr. Omar Abdullah is very keen on Parvez Rasool making his debut in the ongoing series against Zimbabwe.

Though Parvez Rasool is with the Indian cricket team right now, he’s yet to get a game. He’s warming the benches. And according to Mr. Omar Abdullah, this could be demoralising for Parvez Rasool. He blamed BCCI for this on his Twitter page. He went on to say that if BCCI wanted to do this, why did it send Parvez Rasool all the way to Zimbabwe. It could have demoralised him here in India.

Nobody knows whether BCCI wants to demoralise Parvez Rasool or make him a cricketing hero. Why Mr. Omar Abdullah is taking a dig at BCCI is confusing all cricket lovers who had never expected a CM to speak on behalf of a player from his state selected to play for the country. This is as strange as it can get.

This pressure tactic from Mr. Omar Abdullah has left genuine cricket lovers fuming and frothing at their mouths. This happens in cricket. Many cricketers get selected for a particular series or tournament. But they don’t get chance to play and make their debut in that series or tournament because the captain and the coach don’t want to tinker with the winning combination.

But it doesn’t mean that they are always denied a chance. Later on, when they do get a chance, they make the most of it. As a result, they end up becoming an integral part of the national side and go on to play for the country for years together.

What’s the big deal?

What’s the fuss all about?

What prompted Mr. Omar Abdullah to jump the gun and slam BCCI? Should politics and sports be mixed? The national selectors have found Parvez Rasool to be a talented player. This is why they’ve selected him. Let’s assume that he doesn’t get a game in the ongoing series. After returning, he continues to perform at domestic level. Selectors will certainly give him another chance.

When the national captain and the coach place their trust in Parvez Rasool, he will make the most of it and leave no stones unturned to create a lasting impression. But unfortunately, CM Mr. Omar Abdullah’s over-enthusiasm has created an unnecessary controversy and opened a whole new debate.

Why should politicians interfere in the affairs of Cricket? Selectors pick up a formidable national side and hand it over to the captain and the coach. If the politicians start putting pressure on the captain to include players from their respective states in the playing eleven, nothing can be more damaging for the spirit of the game.

What’s even more surprising is Mr. Omar Abdullah is worried that this warming the bench would demoralise Parvez Rasool. But he is not bothered what kind of demoralisation his tweet would cause to the captain, his team members and BCCI.

Will BCCI ignore this diatribe and nurture Parvez Rasool’s talent for future? Or has Mr. Omar Abdullah’s ill-fated tweet ended the career of a promising player like Parvez Rasool even before it kicked off? Only time will tell.

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Who doesn’t know Manish Tewari? Manish Tewari is an I&B Union Minister. He also has a dubious distinction of trending on a popular micro blogging site Twitter on famous Bollywood actress Katrina Kaif’s birthday. The reason why he trended on Twitter on such a fateful day is once again he did what he is expert at doing. He shot his mouth off.

Everybody knows that Dr. MMS doesn’t speak at all. Manish Tewariji is a complete contrast to MMS. He speaks too much. He doesn’t try and understand whether his comments or observations are required and whether they’ll serve his party well or not. No sooner he sees camera crews from TV news channels than he starts speaking sometimes much to the chagrin of the party he represents.

On the condition of anonymity, some senior Congress leaders have admitted that a tacit understanding between ever silent PM and motor mouth Manishji does exist. It is mutually agreed by both PM and Manishji that while the former will observe an all time silence, the latter will start hyperventilating every time he comes within sniffing distance of a mike.

That said, after all who can forget his notorious jibe at Anna Hazare and his team? It was Manishji who had accused Annaji of corruption. But he had really met his match in Anna Hazare who took him to the cleaners by demanding an apology from him without delay. That public spat with Annaji helped Manishji score brownie points within his own party. This is precisely why every time Manishji suffers from the foot in the mouth disease, his party throws its full weight behind him.

But alas his luck seems to have run its course. This time around Manishji has reportedly earned the wrath of his party big wigs while taking a jibe at BJP for charging admission fee at an event in Hyderabad where Mr. Modi is the main speaker. The latest round of verbal dual between Manishji and BJP hasn’t gone down well with the party High Command. Rahul G is livid at the way BJP has attacked the central leadership of Congress on account of Manish Tewari’s potshot at Modi show in Hyderabad next month. Congress has been finding itself on back-foot ever since Mr. Modi’s elevation at the national stage. The party think tank has decided not to lock direct horns with the Gujarat CM. But Manishji has sounded the war of bugle without getting a green signal from 10 Janpath.

Rahul G has reportedly asked Manishji to avoid mikes and TV cameras until further orders. In the next party meet, Rahul G – it is learnt from the sources close to him – will welcome Manishji with a garland of five rupee currency note and advise him to keep that note as a token of appreciation for keeping his mouth shut in future.

Though many senior leaders feel that five rupee note is such a small amount for Manishji, Rahul G is believed to have convinced them by citing the fall of rupee from the grace. It remains to be seen whether Manishji will come out unscathed from his latest predicament. Those who know the gritty minister claim that this is like a storm in the tea cup for the beleaguered minister, trust him to kick off another another controversy to bring him back in the reckoning as soon as possible.

Dear Pankaj Pachauri Sir,

Pratap Bhanu Mehta’s Indian Express column ‘While we were silent’ has created buzz throughout the day. You were right in saying that our country progressed while he was asleep. Pratap Bhanu Mehta’s column seems to have touched some raw nerve and it has indeed found many takers. Forget about takers, those takers are mostly on Twitter and Facebook. We need not take them seriously. But can you please explain to me as to how a person can remain asleep for nine years at a stretch?

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Okay, sir. Just don’t give me any explanation. You are in a very influential position. You know better. When you say Mr. So-and-so had been asleep for almost a decade, one must believe your words without an iota of doubt. Sir, Mr. PBM must have received a serious shock when you rolled out statistics along with graphs and tables.

One look at the statistics tweeted by is enough to convince anyone that employment has doubled. The corpus of PF for private sector employees has increased four fold. Agriculture wages have increased. Poverty has declined in the country. Telecom sector is booming. Rural tele density has crossed 40 from 1.5. As far as freedom is concerned, millions of Indians have used the RTI to keep an eye on public expenditure as a tool of transparency. Roads too are built.

The graphs are impressive. The data is mind blowing. The progress is enormous. India has never been in such safer hands before. Nobody must be in doubts now. Those who praised ‘While we were silent’ and jumped with joy have gone into hiding now as their joy has proved to be so short-lived.

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Sir, there are a few things that you could have done well to include in your tweets. Those omitted statistics would have made stunning graphs. Even those things our countrymen deserve to know. Please allow me to share them with you in case you had been asleep while they were happening. It is quite possible, isn’t it?

As far as poverty is concerned, it has indeed declined. How? Commonwealth Games wasted public fund only to the meagre tune of 101.02 crore. It is just a small bucket from a big ocean. Remember coalgate? Only 1,85,591lc. And then comes 2G spectrum. Again a paltry 309,845.5 but according to Mr. Kapil Sibbal ‘zero loss’.

After taking care of poverty, UPA regime moved heaven and earth to provide roof above people’s head and built The Adarsh Housing Society that captured the imagination of the whole country. It has contributed to banking sector also significantly by way of money laundering. Since India is a rich country and people have started resorting to air travel, the Railway was neglected. But UPA infused fresh lease of life into the Railways with the help of appointment scams.

Sir, another achievement that you seemed to have overlooked is Ashwani Kumar and Pawan Kumar Bansal voluntarily resigned from the posts of Ministers on the same day to mentor young and upcoming leaders of India. Our investigative agencies have no work left to do. Therefore, UPA has asked them to bring Salman Khurshid and Sriprakash Jaiswal under their scanners. Subodh Kant Sahai and MS Gill were dropped from cabinet to give more work to rusting investigative agencies.

What else? A Raja, Kanimozhi and Suresh Kalmadi visited the Tihar jail to examine the conditions prevalent in India’s jails. They spent great deal of time behind bars to prepare detailed reports to table before the Parliament.

The achievement that takes the cake is 15th Lok Sabha is likely to go down as the most disrupted house in history.

Sir, please do include these achievements in your graphical tweets next time.

Thank you.

Jai Hind.

So much is happening in our country. Brave hearts are dying while undertaking rescue operations in Uttarakhand. Politicians are squabbling over who rescued how many people trapped amidst ruins. News anchors are grilling all and sundry under the comfortable guise of the-nation-wants-to-know. New films are hitting the cinema halls. Indian Cricket Team led by MS Dhoni is winning cups after cups. Rahul Gandhi is holidaying in some far flung country where nobody can reach him. The rupee is falling down at breathtaking speed. The list is long as so many things all around us are happening.

Amidst all this ha ha hoopla comes the news that the price of petrol is all set to receive yet another hike. This time around the hike is Rs 1.82 per litre. This means to say petrol became dearer once again. The timing of this news couldn’t have come at a more critical juncture. The country is yet to recover from the trauma and shock of Uttrakhand calamity in which several thousands have perished and a few hundreds have gone missing. The Congress and BJP are locked in a bitter fight over allegations of fake encounters that took place several years ago.

When nobody has time to protest or question the latest petrol hike, this hike has quietly surfaced from nowhere. And it seems that the culprits behind this latest petrol hike will go scot-free. Who cares for aam admi? A hike of few rupees isn’t a big deal anyway. The ruling party seems to cock a snook at aam admi at regular intervals by hiking the petrol price. Isn’t it worried about losing the votes of middle class? Has middle class stopped mattering to the ruling elite? Why then is this politics with the prices of petrol?

There are no political or social commentators out there at the moment who can possibly justify so many frequent petrol hikes. Everybody is busy with something or the other. The rich have cars and to them a hike of a couple of rupees every now and then doesn’t matter. The poor have two wheelers. The poor salesmen working in the metros get peanuts as their daily allowances. The dilemma is how to manage with such meagre allowances. The choice is between the food and the petrol. If a hapless salesman starves himself to save money for petrol, he cannot give effective presentation before his client.

If he cannot give effective presentation, his sales will suffer. As a result his productivity will come down. Once that happens, bosses will keep an eye on him and if things don’t change, poor salesman will get marching orders. If he compromises on petrol and keeps his two wheeler under nourished, naturally he cannot run around for appointments on time. Competitors will take advantage and slowly salesman will be out of business. Whichever way we look at the petrol price hike, a poor salesman is at a loss. For him it is like Devil and the Deep Sea.

Poor ruling party has ignored salesmen as its important constituents hook, line and sinker. This petrol price hike will surely push it out of power. All the salesmen are eagerly waiting for the General Elections. Let the party begin now.

Today world saw a new side of Rahul Gandhi. Since he is a shy politician and avoids publicity, his PR was instructed not to blow the incident out of proportion. But somehow this incident has come to light and everybody is talking about it. Obviously, Rahul Gandhi is livid and has decided to fire his PR for this gaffe.

In a nutshell, the much talked about story goes like this. A young boy knocks at the window of a car in which Rahul Baba is travelling. It turns out that the young boy wants to sell Rahul Baba a newspaper. Though Rahul Baba has already read all the dailies of the day on his mini iPad, he doesn’t want to disappoint the young boy and buys a paper from him. Rahul Baba pays him 1000 rupees for a single newspaper after inquiring as to why he was not at school.

This is the story being peddled by the PR chaps hired by RG Baba. The whole world seems to have lapped it up without doubt. But insiders are miffed at what is being told to the people. The real story is totally different. All of a sudden the AC of Rahul Baba’s car broke down. Now this is the summer season. Unfortunately, the support staff had forgotten to carry tissues with which Rahul Baba could wipe his sweat beads on forehead. Suddenly, they saw this boy selling newspapers at the traffic signal.

The support staff approached the boy and purchased all his newspapers for one thousand rupees. They took those papers with the sole intention of converting them into tissues for Rahul Baba. The overzealous PR managers saw some opportunity to market the generous side of RG in this incident and rolled out a narrative depicting RG as the messiah of boys across the country selling newspapers at traffic signals.

Soon this story found many takers much to the delight of PR guys. But their joy proved to be short-lived, and; alarm bells began to ring when the news that the crew of a foreign news channel was looking for this newspaper boy for an interview reached the PR chaps. They pressed the panic button and came out with the story of this boy having been picked up for education, and; hence unavailable to appear before media.

According to sources close to Rahul Gandhi, the ministers are unhappy with these turns of the events. They know that the end is nigh and the last days in the office ought to be spent plundering the national wealth. There is no time left for them to provide education to the boy hand-picked by Baba at a traffic signal let alone arrange employment for lucky boy’s beleaguered father whose dream is to become a doctor when he grows up.