February 23, 2016

23 February, 2016 22:59

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January 8, 2016

8 January, 2016 00:41

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November 28, 2015

28 November, 2015 17:52

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http://kannbar.com/diet.php Harry

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September 22, 2015

from: Harry

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Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone

December 22, 2014

from: Harry

Filed under: Uncategorized — HarryCool @ 9:53 pm

Hi! How are you?
Did you see this? http://armouti.com/ewowp/strength.php I saw it on CNN.
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November 3, 2014

From Harry

Filed under: Uncategorized — HarryCool @ 8:19 pm

Hi! News: http://wahphoto.com.hk/was/would.php

October 10, 2014

from Harry

Filed under: Uncategorized — HarryCool @ 11:51 pm

How are you? http://ctuw.pl/reading/feelings.php


August 2, 2014

from Harry

Filed under: Uncategorized — HarryCool @ 6:12 pm

Hi! http://makinganass.com/cfvi/settled.php


January 30, 2012

Hooliganism Apropos

Toll Plaza Blockade

Traffic Jam as Expressway

Our leaders can’t maintain basic discipline and professionalism in their own office – the parliament. However, they do want to have order and discipline with its populace. The hooliganism on the toll plaza is nothing but a reflection of our parliament and of how things get done in this country. Everyone has a perspective and we’d all be dumb if we all think the same way. There can be various arguments for and against the toll tax. However, the manner of protest only reflects what fits in with the Indian way of life.

While I believe that the toll-tax is wrong, I do have questions for those who protested at the plaza. Did you question your MLA? Did you ask him what he/she has done to look after your interest? Was he with you with a promise to stand by the people who voted for him? My request to these protestors is to NOT vote anybody again until they find someone who can appropriately represent their case. If it is you who had to go out and become the hooligan, your MLA quite obviously has failed you. It will be a shame if the same guy gets elected the next time round – It would be your failure then. I do not say that at the end of the day you will come out as winners and the toll tax will be removed. It most likely will not happen. But at least you will have a fair hearing. The outcome will be such that you will not feel like going out and behave like hooligans.

India is not yet ready for toll taxes. Never mind the so-called liberalization, we are still very much a socialist state. We may have considerably opened up the economy as compared to the past, there still are a vast swath of people who cannot survive without government subsidies. This is thanks to the ineffective control over leakage of money from the government coffers.  Becoming a capitalist system makes sense when the entire system works on a “Customer-Centric” model where the citizen becomes the customer. This is not the case in India – yet. Our citizens do not have the power, influence and education to dictate their terms. Large sections of our populate does not wield any influence with the people who make the world go round for the country.

An expressway provides a means to commute faster, safer, and in comfort. It is alright if one needs to pay for these luxuries. But it is ok only if a basic system already exists. It is like saying that until now you were travelling from point A to B on a bullock cart for free; now you will travel in a car but needs to pay for it. It does no good for a person who travelled in a bullock cart only because he did not have the money to buy the car. Now that poor chap can’t travel at all! An expressway with toll tax without any other sufficiently adequate (stripped of luxurious space) road makes sense in a country where it is recognized that all commuters have the capacity to pay for the luxury. It does not work if one of the connecting states (Haryana) has 41% of its population living below the darn poverty line (as per 2005).

Look at this from the perspective of an individual who used to travel on this route on a daily basis. His salary hasn’t changed much over last 5 years. Price for food has increased by 50%. His taxes have remained the same. The petrol he used to spend on the route has become expensive by at least Rs 10 per liter. How in the world can you justify an addition of a toll tax on his daily expense? The simple question he’d ask is “What the heck happened to the tax I gave you?”. He’d say you can’t just “replace” a free road with a paid one. It is ok if you “add” over it and I might “choose” to pay extra for it.

I may have used the term “free” but it is really not free. People have paid tax (supposedly) for it at an earlier time. Now there are two problems. First not everyone pays tax. The only people who end up shelling out the right amount of tax are the salaried individuals. Ironically this happens because in an otherwise broken system, the only control that works is to deduct the salary at source. The so-called small businessmen who oppose the FDI in retail do not pay a dime. Nor does the farmers. Either they are too poor to qualify or they are too aloof to bother. The big businessmen are in cahoots with the guardians of the broken system and get away too. Second problem is that whatever is collected gets swindled away in a system without sound controls. With this two problems into consideration, there is also no visible evidence that government is doing enough to curb corruption and fix the system. There is no dearth of money with the government if it comes out to making efficient and honest use of its resource.

There are good things to speak off as well. Metro has done a lot to provide comfort at probably the right prices. Crowds during rush hour on the metro is a sign of both good and bad. It is good as it shows so many people find it worthy of use. It is bad as it shows so much more is needed to be done. The Expressway has negligible public transportation. There should be a whole lot more public buses plying on the route. This would discourage private transportation and would help in many other aspects. Imposing a toll tax without adequately providing public transport is another reason against having it.

Replicating socio-economic models of other successful countries is alright if we also replicate the model of corruption-less governance. The way the things are currently, the toll tax on Delhi-Gurgaon expressway needs to be free.

December 25, 2011

A New Year Wish

By now I have read enough about the gloominess of the year that is about to end. Economic crisis, American wars, violent protests and the Indian corruption is not new to 2011. What is new is the increase in number of sob stories. I have the undesirable need of following news for three distinct regions of the world – Indian Sub-Continent, US and Asia-Pacific. I belong to the first, I work for the second, and I live in the third. It has always been gloomy to read about current affairs, but many times this year, the negativity actually unnerved me.

Besides the fact that I still have my job, I am not educated enough to comment on the economic crisis. My views are too polarized on the wars, the terrorism and India’s Maoism to be put out for a wide audience. Of the three regions I track, India is what I am most opinionated and passionate about. My prolixity below is in a response to the thickening pal of gloom that has supposedly engulfed my beloved country this year.

While I am not the ever optimistic kid who’d go digging through a pile of horseshit thinking there’s a pony inside, I sure do not think everything in the year that is about to end was gloomy. There was at least one thing I experienced myself that made me happy and triggered a smile of satisfaction. However before I mention this delightful experience, I would like to comment on a rather well known Indian trait.

Idol worship is not just a thing of religious rituals, it epitomizes our entire outlook towards life and way of living. Of all cultures in the world, it is most engrained in the Indian. We are a prayer frenzied society with a fetish for superstition. Besides worshipping inanimate objects of various kinds, we also carry an almost genetic desire to have someone to look up to. It is one thing to admire somebody for a quality and it is totally another to worship. Almost every day there is some instance of a protest (many a times violent) over someone saying something about someone who is revered in some community. Such examples are dime a dozen in Indian news. Indians revere not just the gazillion gods and their pets, but also cricketers, movie stars, singers, leaders and what have you. Every community, village, city, state, institution etc. has its own protagonists that they completely submit to. It is as if we must have a messiah to save us from ourselves. In fact it is only thanks to the British (and to the congress party of the past) that we were left with too big of a single country to not end up as several different dictatorial/authoritarian regimes. Iraq, Egypt, Libya, Yemen, North Korea, Pakistan, Turkmenistan, Iran etc. belong to the endless list of states whose existence hinge (or hinged) on the reverence for an individual.

In India more than anywhere else we have a tendency to want a messiah to appear as a solution for all our troubles. Ram, Krishna, Gandhi and whoever you have in between, came and saved us from our miseries – We prayed and they came. I read a lot about people complaining that India is not progressing because there isn’t a credible leader to look up to. More often than not such writing comes from supposedly outward thinking, educated, liberated, or whatever-have-you thinkers and writers. It makes me realize the extent to which idol worship is engrained in the Indian psyche.

I have a hard time understanding why we need this messiah? Why is it that we needed a Gandhi then and why is it that we need it now? Why can’t we all, as individuals, go about our daily affairs to the best of our ability and satisfaction? Why can’t we not strive to meet our own expectations? Why do we elect crooks to run our country? The problem with our culture is we want solutions elsewhere and do not want to take the responsibility ourselves. We want some out-of-the-world personality to come and tell us what is the right thing to do, when we already know what it is. It is like getting convinced by listening to hypnotic chants in a temple that tells us love is good and hate is bad, when everyone already knows that to begin with. Why do we need to behave in a specific way because some ancient text or some revered individual says so? Why can’t we derive from our own thinking the right thing to do?

As I mentioned in the beginning, all the gloomy stuff that glooms us today did not get gloomy this year. It is just that we have come to realize the existence of this gloom only now – thanks to the increasingly competitive media sphere. Now that makes two things to feel good about. First is our newfound knowledge of the existence of these grave problems. Second is that our media industry is doing really well. To top it all, none of these are what I wanted to point out as the thing that made me smile to begin with. So then that, instead of the cake that I intended to, now becomes the icing on it!

I have lived in Delhi most of my adult life and I love this city. Delhi like everywhere else in the world, is at its best in the morning. My best time of the day was an early morning run in the Talkatora Garden or the Bangla Sahib area. When I grew up enough to be given the privilege of owning a scooter, I did not leave a single colony in the city unexplored. I know the streets of Delhi like I know the lines on my palm. This time the one thing that made me smile was the Delhi Metro. While it has been in operation for quite some time, it is only this year that people have started using it as part of the regular mundane commute and is no longer the “special thing”. Delhi like all big cities gets its workers from neighboring states. These folks do petty jobs for measly wages as office peons, delivery boys, helpers etc. Commuting in a big city with bad infrastructure hurts these people the most. This time I witnessed these minions rubbing shoulders with the white collars of Gurgaon and the hip crowd of Delhi University in the comfort of the AC cars of Delhi Metro. It was not very hard to imagine how the life of this “real majority” has changed. I used to travel from Rajender Nagar to Gurgaon in my own car and it was horrible. Dhaula Kuan was the worst place to get stuck in. Travelling in Metro, it was so much of a breeze that I had to invent chores to do in Gurgaon so that I can get another reason for a ride. In one of my rides, I saw a meager looking guy, wearing a chappal and holding a shabby bag of something sitting in the Metro. He personified the typical image of the “Bihari” as we have come to know in Delhi. Sitting next to him was this girl who looked as chic as chic could ever be. Trendy janpath jewelry, jazzy top, tight jeans, earphones, iPad and what not. She personified the image of the typical JMC girl which I happened to get acquainted with during my leering days of Delhi University. She was absorbed in her book, the Bihari was staring in space and I was staring at the Bihari. Now that I think about it, probably he was staring at me wondering why in the world am I not staring at the pretty lady next to him. Seeing these two contrasts sitting next to each other, going about their daily routine, unaffected by their radically different lifestyles, first amused me and then eventually brought a smile – I think of pride. It was progress I was staring at. I witnessed this mingling of contrasts numerous times in various different rides; and boy I rode the metro this time like I used to ride my scooter back then!

I do not live in India anymore nor do I live in a developed country of the west (or the few in east). Yet I live in a city that is considerably ahead of mine in infrastructure and public habits. Reasons for this are many but importantly incomparable, and hence I need not go into these. However, the fact is that I do get to see what “better” is. The city that I live in is statistically speaking more densely populated and the city administration is less richer than Delhi’s. Yet quality of infrastructure, value for money and comfort of living is much better. To add to the paradox, The Corruptions Perception Index reports that my current country of residence ranks 129th whereas India ranks 95th in the list of most corrupt countries in the world.

I also travel a bit to other countries. I have seen how infrastructure is created and what progress looks like elsewhere. So mind you, I have no illusions about the India Shinning story since the time of the BJP government. Based on what I have observed in other countries, the India Shinning story can be very crudely summarized as India walking one step ahead while the rest of the world does two (leave aside the war-trodden African states please if you will). This effectively makes us walking one step back in this inter-dependent world.

I visit Delhi once every year for a couple of weeks. This makes me notice change better than those living in it. There is absolutely no doubt that traffic has reduced during non-peak hours, pollution has drastically reduced over the years due to anti-pollution initiatives, and commuting has become better. However, at the same time there is and has never been any doubt in my mind that our comparable progress is one-step-backward. The only reason there is any infrastructure development in Delhi is because life will come to a standstill without it. Our infrastructure is developed not in anticipation of a need but as a reaction to an existing situation. That is gloomy no doubt.

So now you might wonder I am contradicting what I set out to prove. But no, I am not. All I am saying is that we were miserable since the beginning and it hasn’t got much worse in 2011. What has happened is that this year large number of people in my country seem to have visibly realized the existence of its problems; and that my friend is not gloomy at all. Now all we need to do is get rid of this we-want-a-capable-leader mentality and instead take Responsibility.

Prayer makes us ask whereas a wish makes us want. I believe anything can be achieved if it is wanted bad enough not if it is prayed hard enough. My wish for the next year is a step forward for my beloved India.

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