Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Some glimpses of the annual flower show

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

All that glitters...

From time immemorial, gold was the centre of all materialistic desires. We all have read the famous story of king Midas who wanted only gold around him. Saint Kabir expressed his views as:
कनक-कनक ते सौ गुनी, मादकता अधिकाय |
एक खाय बौराय जग, एक पाय बौराय ||


The recent rise in gold prices has attracted investors a lot. We'll try to find out if investing in gold is actually profitable to the extent it is being described or not.


I, as an investor, buy gold ornaments weighing 100gms when gold prices were Rs. 10,000 each 10 gms. I paid a making charge of Rs. 250 each gram. Thus, I paid a total of Rs 1 lakh for gold and Rs. 25000 as making charges, making it 1.25 lakhs. On my bill, I paid a tax of say 10%, bringing the total to 1.375 lakhs.


Now the prices of gold are at 16000 per 10 gms and I decide to sell my gold ornaments. I go to the jeweler and he agrees to pay me in cash but after deducting 20% of weight (a standard practice). I agree and he gives me 80 X 1600 = 128000.


Five years back when gold was at 1000 Rs./gram, my ornaments cost me Rs.137500. After five years, I earn – 9500! OOPS! Did I make any mistake in calculation?


What if I get the price without any deduction? Lets find out. 100 X 1600 = 160000. My gain is 160000 – 137500 = 22500. That gives a 16.4 % gain in five years while the actual purchase price of gold went up by 60%!


That's not fair. I'll buy a gold bar from my bank which also gives me the purity certificate. Now I have a 100 gm bar I bought in Rs. 1 lakh. As the prices are now Rs 1600/gm, I approach my bank and the manager says that they are authorized for ONLY selling, not buy-back! No problem, I'll sell it to my jeweler (I'm smarter than this dumbo manager!). The jeweler straightway refuses my offer. My friend has bought a bar from the same jeweler. When he comes, the jeweler refuses to buy-back (you know that it is recession, people are not buying gold and I am short of operating capital).


With 100 gm of gold, I am holding a property that is worth Rs 160000. Do you agree to it?


Thursday, December 3, 2009

Remembering Deshratna Dr. Rajendra Babu

Today, I got the opportunity to attend "Rajendra Jayanti" celebration in Rajendra Vidyalaya. The chief guest Mr. Bhaskar Rao - a noted scholar and stage artist inaugurated the function by lighting up the "deep". Mr. Rao, Mr. K. B. Sinha and Mr. D. Dasgupta (principal) recaptured many well known as well as not-so-well known facts about Dr. Rajendra Prasad. Students staged a good show with the theme of modernisation in harmony with nature. A few photographs of the occasion for everyone!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

शाबाश मुकंदी!

जमशेदपुर चुनाव के ऐन पहले लापतागंज के नेताजी शर्मिंदा हो गए. शरद जोशी जी की व्यंग रचना की पराकाष्टा देखने को मिली जब नेता जी कहते हैं कि शर्मिंदा होने से फुर्सत मिले, तब तो काम करें! और जवाब में अपने मुकंदी भैया मिल-बाँट कर शर्मिंदा होने का प्रस्ताव रखते हैं: "देश की हालत पर हम शर्मिंदा हो लेते हैं, देश को इस हालत में लाने के लिए आप शर्मिंदा हो लें!" जीत सदा-सर्वदा की तरह नेताजी की होती है और जनता शर्मिंदा होती है कि ऐसा नेता क्यों चुना......

एक ही बात .......

शाबाश मुकंदी!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

सच का सामना

"भैया प्रणाम. क्या बात है? गाँधी-जयंती के दिन उदास?"
"आओ-आओ. उदास नही हूँ, बस ज़रा सोच में डूबा हूँ."
मटकू भैया के तेवर देख मैं हैरान था. जलेबी जैसे सीधे-सादे हमारे भैया को क्या हो गया? शक हुआ तो रहा नही गया,
"भैया, आपकी तबियत तो ठीक है?"
"आज एक अजीब वाकया हुआ. हमलोग बाज़ार से आ रहे थे. इतने में क्या देखता हूँ कि एक आदमी गांधीजी की तरह धोती बांधे, चश्मा पहने हाथों में तिरंगा लिए नंगे पांव शान से चला जा रहा है. हमरा बिटवा बोला - पापा देखो. वो आदमी गांधीजी के 'fancy dress' में जा रहा है."
"फिर क्या हुआ?" अब मेरे मन में भी उत्सुकता जागने लगी.
" फिर क्या... पता नही क्यों, हमरे मुहं से निकल गया - गांधीजी के ड्रेस में fancy क्या है?"
"फिर क्या हुआ भैया?"
"हमरा बिटवा फिर बोला - पापा, देखिये! सब लोग उसको देख कर हस रहे हैं.  हमरे मुहं से अनायास फिर निकल गया - बेटा, जिस देश में सच से सामना होते ही घर टूट जाएँ, लोग आत्महत्याएं कर लें, वहां इस तरह सत्य पर लोग सिर्फ हंस ही सकते हैं. असल में वे उसपर नही, अपने आप पर हंस रहे हैं .... 'सच से भागने' की अपनी कमजोरी छुपाने के लिए."
कड़वे सच का सामना करने की हिम्मत मुझमे भी नही थी.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Thank You

There are times when life itself makes life memorable. At the particular instant, sometimes it is difficult to call it a jeopardize or a silver lining; but whatever you chose, the connections seem to move in an interesting pattern.
Years ago, the same happened with me. I never happened to relate to it in any way till now, but this year, it was special. So, it needed special attention. And that is what I gave it. It was all very memorable. I would not say "May this day come in your life again and again" but would certainly thank god for whatever he gave me, for whatever he chose me to do and for whatever he wanted me to become!

Thursday, August 20, 2009


"Welcome Ravi, Welcome Mr. Gupta"
Mr. Narrottam Gupta felt proud as Mr. Lalwani; the ex-class teacher of Ravi greeted them. As the entire hall stood up and clapped, Mr. Lalwani escorted them to their seat. Both of them sat down.
"Chikoo," shouted Mrs. Manasi Gupta. "Are you mad? You'll fall down."
"I'm Spiderman" Chikoo yelled back in excitement. He was hanging down from a rope tied to the tree.
When he got back, his mother asked him, "Why do you want to become Spiderman? He is so ugly, red-blue colored, not a human you see!"
"But I want to become a super hero like him."
"Who wants to be Spiderman?" This was Mr. Gupta.
"Your beloved son want to be.." came the answer from Mrs. Gupta.
"Don't worry son! I've brought the latest movie of Spiderman. Want to see it?"
"I'll call all my friends first.." and he ran away.
It was a late Sunday afternoon. Mr. Gupta was at home. All of them had their lunch and were feeling sleepy. Chikoo wanted to go and play out but was afraid of his dad.
"Chikoo" called his mother. "Here's your glass of milk. Finish it before going out to play."
"Yes mamma"
As soon as his mother was out of sight, the 9 year old took the glass and threw the milk out in the drain. As he turned back, he bumped into his father who was watching all this. He became very angry. Holding him by his ear, Mr. Gupta brought him out on the road that went behind their house. There was a small child gathering food from the dust-bin. "There you see" he pointed. "There are people who don't get to eat. What we throw and call un-hygienic, is consumed by these children. You throw because god has given you the privilege of being born in a well to do family. Ever thought of these?"
When everyone gathered for the dinner, Chikoo was grim. Mr. Gupta felt sorry for the boy. He thought that he was too harsh in the evening.
"Papa" said Ravi. "Do you want me to drink milk everyday?"
"Of course, son!"
"Promise me one thing"
"Today, I talked to that boy. His name is Ganesh. He lives in a slum and can hardly afford his meals. I have promised him that he too can go to a school… just like me! Will you help me in this?"
Suddenly, Mr. Gupta realized that his son was too old for his age. His smile said all that he wanted to. Chikoo ran and hugged his father. The next evening, when Mr. Gupta returned home, he found Chikoo talking with a boy. "Papa. Meet Ganesh."
"There's good news for you. Government has a provision for 10% reservation for the people "Below-Poverty-Line" in the admissions to private schools. I had a talk with your principal and he has asked me to bring this boy to school any day I am free."
"Why any day? Why not tomorrow?"
"OK.. OK"
So, Ganesh got admissions. Chikoo and his friends contributed towards his studies by giving him the surplus they had. They also arranged the books from their juniors. School fees was not a problem as government was already paying subsidy. The rest amount was given by Mr. Gupta as charity.
Today was the last day of school. After 15 days, the final exams of 12th were to start. Suddenly the phone rang. His mother had met with an accident while coming back from market. He and his father rushed to the hospital. The doctors tried their best… but…
Chikoo was stunned at the news. The grief was so hard that he could not utter a word. His exams went bad. When the exams were over and he had to stay back at home, everything in the house reminded him of his mother. He could not bear it any more.
One day, he decided that it was enough now. He must take some decision. He has lost his mother. When the results come, he will lose in the exams. People will call him a failure. He took the extreme decision. He wanted to end his life.
When he kicked the small table beneath his legs and the knot of the rope started gripping and tightening his throat, he grasped for breath. He longed that 'god send someone to save him'. The feelings faded by as his senses started loosing their control.
When his eyes opened, he saw a lot of faces over him. He first thought that they were devils who have come to take him to hell. Then he realized that they were his own friends and father. They all had tears in their eyes.
The result was out now. Although he could not do well, it was not very bad! He pursued his father to send him to Kota for coaching classes.
"I now invite Mr. Ravi Gupta, IIT National topper to say a few words."
"Thank you friends for such a overwhelming welcome. When I was a child, I always wanted to be a hero… a super hero....." he could not finish his words.
"Sorry for interrupting friends! I am Ganesh and I am the state topper of 10th this year. I would like to say a few words. When I was a child, I used to pick food from the scrap bins. It was Ravi bhaiya who gave me the courage and means to study and here I am. He is a super hero for me. He helped me when I needed his help the most…"He was speaking in flow and people were clapping. Tears came in the eyes of Chikoo. His dream of becoming a superhero had come true!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Beauties on the roads

As far as looks are concerned, which cars (on indian roads) appeal you the most?
In the small car segment, i10 has the most beautiful looks, be it exteriors or interiors. It comes in a price range of 4 to 5 lacs. In the very next segment, Fiat Linea (marketed by Tata Motors) has the most elegant looks. The punch-line of its ad says "admiration guranteed". It has a price tag in the range of 6 to 7 lacs. The next most beautiful car (obviously as per my choice) is Honda Civic. Its sleek design and smooth looks will catch your eyes. It is in the range of 12 to 13 lacs.
Which cars do YOU find exciting?

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Who Am I?

Obedient, Knowledgeable and Proactive

Versatile yet strong, soft yet assertive

Lightening fast with a killer instinct

Is it me? Or my persona is distinct?

Looked upon as a man of substance

I just wonder, who I am?

Everyone has the right to think

I'm there for them, at eye's blink

Friend, son, husband and father

Numerous relations, to fulfill and gather

Unfeigned within or just a sham

I just wonder, who I am?

Friday, July 3, 2009

Think Again: Swine Flu

Yesterday's Hindustan Dainik had a really informative and thought provocative article. I'm posting it here. If it is not appearing correctly, the link may be of help.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

तीन टांगो वाला आदमी

"मटकू भइया राम-राम"
"अचानक इ राम-राम कइसे सूझा?"

"भइया, एक किताब पढ़ रहे थे जिसमे गाँव का एक आदमी मरते समय अपने बेटा को कहता है कि
१ हमेशा छावँ में काम पर जाओ और काम से आओ
२ मुसीबत में तीन टांग वाले से मदद लो।"

"अब एक कहानी सुनो" मटकू भइया बोले।

"एक गाँव में किसी लड़के कि शादी थी। बारात की तैयारी धूम धाम से चल रही थी। साथ ही लड़की-पक्ष कि एक विचित्र शर्त भी चर्चा में थी - बारात में सारे जवान होंगे! खैर, जब बारात चलने लगी तो एक बूढा आ कर साथ चलने कि जिद्द करने लगा। वैसे तो उसे कोई भी ले जाने को तैयार नही था पर उसकी जिद्द के आगे जवानों की एक न चली। बूढा बस की छत पर जा कर लेट गया। बारात पहुँची तो उसका स्वागत धूम-धाम से हुआ। जवानों ने आँख बचा कर बूढे-बाबा के लिए भी पकवानों कि व्यवस्था कर दी।
जब लड़का मंडप पर बैठ गया तो लडकी वालों ने एक और विचित्र शर्त सामने रखी। कहा गया कि गाँव में जो तालाब है, उसे लड़के-वाले दूध से भर दें, तभी शादी होगी। कुछ अति-उत्साही लड़के तालाब देखने गए पर उसे देख कर उनके होश उड़ गए। वह काफी बड़ा तालाब था! सरे लोग बस के पास विचार करने में लगे थे। उनको परेशान
देख बूढे-बाबा बोले - कोई परेशानी है क्या? पहले तो किसी ने उन पर गौर नही किया पर फिर सबने अपनी समस्या सुना दी। बाबा बोले - इतनी सी बात? अब तो लड़के उखर गए - इतना बड़ा तालाब है, खाली भी करना है और भरने के लिए दूध का भी इन्तेजाम करना है, आधी रात में हमारा दिमाग ख़राब हो रहा है और आप.... जैसे-तैसे सबों को शांत किया गया। फिर बाबा ने अपनी तरकीब बता दी। अब तो लड़के खुशी-खुशी मंडप पर पहुंचे - ऐसा है भाई कि हमलोगों ने तालाब देख लिया है, दूध का भी इन्तेजाम कर लिया है। अब लड़की-वालों की जिम्मेदारी है कि जल्दी से तालाब से पानी निकाल दें ताकि हम उसमे दूध भर सकें!

यही है तीन-टांगो वाले आदमी का कमाल। कुछ समझे?"

मैं हर बार की तरह सिर्फ़ अपना सर हिलाता रह गया!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

जूता पुराण

बाज़ार गया तो जूते की दूकान में मटकू भैया दीख गए. उन्हें छेड़ने का मौका मैं कहाँ छोड़नेवाला था? छूटते ही शुरू हो गया, "क्या भैया? अब आप भी?"
"क्या हुआ?"
"मतलब अब आप भी?"
"अरे मूरख, आगे भी कुछ बोलेगा?"
मटकू भैया को गुस्सा होते देख मुझे मज़ा आने लगा था लेकिन सोये शेर के साथ छेड़खानी तभी तक अच्छी जब तक वो सोया हुआ है.... वरना तो आप समझ ही गए होंगे.
"भैया, बुश से शुरु हुआ सिलसिला PM-in-waiting अडवाणी तक पहुँच गया है..... पर आप किस पर खफा हैं?"
भैया मेरा इशारा समझ कर हँसने लगे.
बोले "खफा तो पब्लिक है भाई.... अब पब्लिक को भाषण नही, रासन चाहिए. जो देगा, उ वोटवा पायेगा, अ नही ता जूता खायेगा."
हम दोनों साथ में हंस पड़े.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

दिल है छोटा सा.. छोटी सी आशा..

बैंक गया तो मटकू भैया मिल गयेI
दुआ-सलाम के बाद मैने उनको अपनी मुफ्त की सलाह दे डाली, "भैया, अच्छा हुआ आप मिल गयेI आज ही टाटा की 'नैनो' आई हैI आप भी एक ले लोI"
"बात तो तुम बहुत अच्छा कहे हो, पर तुम्हे तीन बातें बोलता हूँI"
"क्या भैया?"
"पहली ये कि एक लाख गाड़ी के लिए एक-एक लाख का बुकिंग अमाउंट जमा होने पर टाटा को कम-से-कम कितने करोड़ मिलेंगे, कभी सोचा है?"
"नही भैया..."
"दूसरी ये कि जब बड़े-बड़े खिलाड़ी लग्ज़री गाड़ी पर ध्यान लगाए बैठे थे, टाटा ने आम उपभोक्ता की उमीद से आगे जा कर उनके सपनो को पंख दिएI उनके छोटे से दिल की छोटी सी आशा की गाड़ी के रूप में 'नैनो' पेश किया...है कि नही?"
"और तीसरी बात भैया?"
"गाड़ी तो आ गयी, बिकेगी भी खूब... पर सड़क के गड्ढे और अतिक्रमण करते वाहनो, दुकानो का हमारे नेताओं के पास क्या समाधान है?"
"......" मैं चुप थाI