12 March, 2008

A tragedy of Olympian proportions

A saga started exactly 80 years ago. It went like this:

Gold, Gold, Gold, Gold, Gold, Gold, Silver, Gold, Bronze, Bronze, _, Gold. Thus it ended with a silver, nay, Gold lining 28 years ago.

In the Golden era during 1928 - 1956, India played 24 Olympic matches, winning all 24, scoring 178 goals and conceding only 7.

After 28 consecutive victories in the Olympic Games, India lost 0-1 to Pakistan in the final at the Rome Olympics in 1960, but regained its 'Golden' status in the next Olympics. But...

then started the real trouble.

Thereafter, we had to be smug with Bronze, Bronze, and then no medal at all. With the sole exception of 1980 Moscow Olympics, Indian Hockey was virtually thrown out of Olympic games. Though initially there was a hue and cry, India quickly got accustomed to playing qualifying games (initially thought to be "insulting" to a team which has a glorious past) just to get into the Olympics as IHF started playing with the game more unabashedly.

This time, Had India won the crucial match against China in Asian Games 2006, it could have reached the finals and there would not be any need for playing the qualifying matches. But it didn't happen.

Had it won the final match against England yesterday,... But it didn't happen either.

As usual, blame game starts which is played more fervently than the game itself, one or two heads will fall and Indian Hockey will rest in peace. Amen!

02 December, 2007

Birds of same feathers meet on Dec. 9th

(Updated with venue details)

First a brief introduction about TMAD (To Make A Difference): They are a group of young people who are committed indeed To Make A Difference in the lives of hapless people.

TMAD started as a group of volunteers in Hyderabad, but now has active members in Bangalore, Chennai, the USA, Nellore and other places also. The person behind this movement is Prasanti who firmly believes "When you want something, the whole universe conspires in helping you to achieve it". A look at their projects - completed and current (Note: The website is still under construction and a few pages are yet to be added): http://tomakeadifference.net/Projects.html

If you are impressed and interested, you too can join them To Make A Difference.

To join TMAD, one must:

* have interest in doing something to the society
* be ready to spend at least one weekend for the group work in a month

After joining,

* Subscribe to one or more subgroups of your interest (Medical, Education, etc.)
* Participate in monthly meetings
* Contribute money* and/or time and/or effort
* Share opinions, come up with suggestions by participating in mail discussions.

TMAD members are meeting the coming Sunday ie, 9th Dec. This is a meeting with members from like-minded groups. If you want to attend the meeting, please contact

prasanthi [dot] uppalapati [at] gmail [dot] com

before Dec. 4th.

Meeting details:

Venue and Timings:

Venue: Floor No 2, Taxila Training Hall, Mariner Block, Ascendas IT PArk, Hitech City (Should bring ID card). Those who are working can bring their company ID card. Others can bring Voters card, Ration card, Driving License or anything that gives the identity.

Timings: 10 am to 5 pm (We request all participants to be there at the venue by 9:30 am).

Strict Guideline: Those who are ready to be there all day long only should come. We will not give any reservation to anyone.

It would be a day long meeting. We request you all to mark the entire day. Incidentally this is Anti-Corruption Day.

Note: Meals and snacks will be arranged.


Individuals and groups who are interested to spare at least two days in a month for social work activity and who, as of now, does not have one particular area to concentrate on. Most importantly who believe in co-operation and bringing our work to a next level.


Every participant should come up with their profile in the following details:

Name, Qualification, Employment/Designation, Email and Phone Number
Inspiration to do social work: 1 or 2 incidents or persons
Most unforgettable experiences: 1 or 2
Area of interest in social work:
Your views on likeminded groups’ forum and meeting.
If member of any groups, give the group’s name, aim, URL and any other useful information.

For groups, one person from the group should explain about the group, aim, objectives, past and current activities and future projects.

For the members of the groups who visited different orphanages, old age homes etc., please come up with all the details that you have about these institutions and their requirements and the kind of support that you expect for your efforts.


Introduction, Welcome/Ice-breaking Speech: 10 minutes

First Session: 1 ½ hour

To know about the interest and views of each participant with respect to social work and also of the participant groups.

Second Session: 1 ½ hour

To identify areas of common interest and to discuss on each topic in the six hat method. (All the six hats are not considered; the purpose is to let everyone on the same page when they think on an aspect.)

Third Session: 1 ½ hour

To know about different organizations and orphanages that the participants visited. (Brief description of 5 to 10 minutes about each organization)

Meanwhile we will have 10 minute breaks. We can have jokes and songs. Participants can exhibit their talent. We will be more than happy if the selections are related to the topics of discussion.

There would be a 10 min briefing from a group about human values and how we can develop the humanity in us and how we can be of good individuals.

Outcome: 1 hour

At the end of the day we should come up with a plan of action on the way we co-operate and co-ordinate with others. May be like any other formal meeting we will come up with a 10 point agreement sort of thing. In simple words, conclusion of the meeting agreed by all the participants.

Lunch Break: 1 hour

Snack Break: 15 min

Photos: 15 min


Meeting should start on time.
Every participant should value the time and speak on what we are supposed to talk.
No one should object and contradict others’ views. We should be good listeners.


We request participants to bring their laptops if they own one. This is to enable any of your friends who are not located in Hyderabad to participate virtually.

Expected Count:

We are expecting a minimum of 50 members and maximum of 100 members.


Please understand the urge behind organizing this meeting. Completely co-operate and confirm your participation. Own this meeting.

We can assure that every participant will be happy to meet so many likeminded people, inspiring experiences and leave with a renewed commitment and hope.

Measure of Success:

Every participant should feel happy
Pledge to continue this kind of meetings
Come up with a date for next meeting

Last but not the least:

Please confirm your participation at least by Dec. 3rd. We once again request members to co-ordinate with your groups and come up with a consolidated list from each group.

Mail to: Prasanthi, prasanthi[dot]uppalapati[at]gmail[dot]com

Disclaimer: This meeting is strictly for people who spare/willing to spare two days a month for social work.
* Those who contribute money to TMAD can rest assured that each rupee they send is spent for the cause. Not a single paisa is spent on commuting or administrative charges. Volunteers bear the charges.

16 April, 2007

Please stop!

1. An appeal to Mr. Rahul Gandhi:
Sir! will you please before you do more damage to your family's reputation, your party's popularity and the nation's honour? Far better if you "read out" well-drafted speaches rather than talking nonsense.

2. An appeal to the media: will you please stop reporting anything related to the Aishwarya-Abhishek marriage? To me, it is disgusting to say the least. As you report everyday -

it is news if they invite xyz to their marriage.
it is news if they don't.

it is news if they order the wedding suites.
it is news if they got the design earlier.

it is news if they meet.
it is news if they don't.

it is news if they smile at each other.
it is news if they don't.

it is news if they go to temple.
it is news if they don't.

Why are you so obsessed with their marriage?
Can't you do anything better??

14 March, 2007

Triumph nonpareil

Yesterday's cartoon:

Today's editorial:

Viswanathan Anand's ascent to the pinnacle in the world of chess is a widely anticipated crowning moment in an extraordinary sporting journey. The true significance of his achievement — he will be the No.1 player when the new rankings are released in April 2007 — will challenge the Indian sporting imagination. For chess is just one part sport. The famous sport of kings is a sort of mental warfare and supremacy here has a meaning all its own. A prodigy who won the world junior championship in 1987 at the age of 17, Anand has beaten a gritty uphill path to greatness, combining natural cognitive genius with patience and perseverance. With an admirable sense of purpose and a steely resolve, the boy nicknamed Lightning Kid — for the awesome speed with which he made his moves — overcame several hurdles early in his career. Today, as he surveys the scene from the game's Everest, Anand can be proud of the revolution he has brought about in India. Nineteen years ago, the suave, wonderfully uncomplicated champion was India's first and only grandmaster. Today, he is the best among 15. Such is the transformative power of pioneering accomplishments.

Anand is Indian sport's most celebrated outsider. Life would have been so much easier had he possessed the kind of gifts on display in popular field sports such as cricket, football, and tennis. Having nothing to declare except a rare genius for moving tiny pieces on a 64-square board, he lacked the support systems that might have eased the path of a Sachin Tendulkar or a Leander Paes. At age 22, Anand took a major step forward, winning the Reggio Emilia title in what was, at that time, the strongest field ever. He finished ahead of Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov in the 10-man event. Three years later, he opened up an early lead against Kasparov in the world championship final at the World Trade Center in New York before the champion inflicted a nerve-shattering defeat on the young Indian. Lesser men might have let their careers drift at that point but Anand regrouped to stay near the top. With his career moving into overdrive, he beat Alexei Shirov in Tehran to win the world title in 2000. Three years later he added the World Rapid Championship to his magnificent collection. Last year, the 37-year-old became only the fourth player in history to cross the 2800-mark in ELO ratings — a ranking system devised by a Hungarian-born American physics professor Arpad Elo (1903-1992). The No.1 ranking following victory in the Linares Super Grandmaster tournament might have been a logical step up the ladder for the Indian maestro. As an individual achievement, it has no parallel in the history of Indian sport.

18 February, 2007

Who the hell is this lady?

Why isn't she put behind the bars??

These two pictures show the gross disrespect and insult to the Indian National flag by this so-called "spiritual leader" and self-proclaimed "GODDESS" Mataji Nirmala Devi. This disrespect to our country's flag shows that she has definitely no respect or love for the country. What is more, her husband C.P.Srivatsava who was an IAS officer and chief of the SCI is seated next to her in the pictures. (He represented India in the UNO for 16 years!) Such a shame!!!

02 January, 2007

Star versus The Real Star

Our media and our heroes

This morning, I received this truly saddening email about a brave army officer who laid his life down in an encounter with Hizbul Mujahideen’s most wanted terrorist. Saddening….and a disgusting commentary on the media in general...

On Tuesday Nov 28th ‘06, a news swept across all the news channels 'Sanjay Datt relieved by the court', 'Sirf Munna Not a bhai', '13 saal ka vanvaas khatam', 'although found guilty for possession of armoury, Sanjay can breath a sigh of relief as all the TADA charges against him are withdrawn'.

And then many experts like Salman khan saying 'He is a good person. We knew he will come out clean' Mr. Big B 'Datt family and our family have relations for years. He's a good kid. He is like elder brother to Abhishek'. His sister Priya Datt 'we can sleep well tonight. It's a great relief'

In other news, Parliament was mad at Indian team for performing bad; Greg Chapel said something ...; Bomb scare in gorakhpoor express; and Shah Rukh Khan replaces Big B in KBC and Sonia asked PM to consider reducing petroleum prices. But most of the emphasis was given to Sanjay Datt's "phoenix like" comeback from the ashes of terrorist charges.

Surfing through the channels, one news on BBC startled me. It read: 'Hizbul Mujahidin's Most wanted terrorist 'Sohel Faisal' killed in anantnag, India. Indian Major leading the operation lost his life in the process. Four others are injured.'

It was past midnight, I started visiting the foolish Indian channels, the ones who are 'Sabse TEZ', but Sanjubaba was still ruling. They were telling how Sanjubaba pleaded with the court saying 'I am the sole bread earner for my family', 'I have a daughter who is studying in US and who will look after her'. And then they showed how sanjubaba was not wearing his lucky blue shirt while he was hearing the verdict. Also how he went to every temple and prayed for last some months. A suspect in Mumbai bomb blasts, convicted under armory act...was being made into a hero.

Sure Sanjubaba has a daughter; sure sanjubaba did not do any terrorist thing as in bombing some place or hijacking an airplane etc. Possessing an AK47 is considered too elementary in terrorist community and also one who possesses an AK47 has a right to possess a pistol so that again is not such a big crime; Sure sanjubaba went to all the temples; Sure he did a lot of gandhigiri but then... people, please read on...

Major Manish H Pitambare got the information from his sources about the terrorists' whereabouts. Wasting no time he attacked the camp killed the Hizbul mujahidin's supremo and in the process lost his life... To the bullets fired from an AK47..

He has a wife and a daughter (just like sanjubaba), age ...18 months.

Major Manish never said 'I have a daughter' before he took the decision to attack the terrorist hide out in the darkest of nights.

He never thought about having a family and he being the bread earner.

No news channel covered this since they were too busy hyping a former drug addict, an actor in real and reel life, a suspect who's linked to bomb blasts which killed hundreds. Their aim was to show how he defied the TADA charges and they were so successful that his conviction in possession of armory had no meaning. They also concluded that his parents in heaven must be happy and proud of him..

Parents of Major Pitambare are still on this earth and they have to live the rest of their lives without their beloved son. His daughter won't ever see her papa again.

Finally Sir Major Pitambare, to my generation there is no greater hero than the one who laid his life in the name of this great nation. Hence Sir, I salute you. We are really proud of you. We salute your braveness which will make us live in peace in the future.

You are the real Star, Vande mataram!

Also read:



what Archana says about our media.

01 December, 2006

The president and the God-man

The poet-President & the “creator of the universe”

India’s President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam has been the chief guest during the glamorous birthday show of controversial godman Sai Baba on 23rd November 2006. It is shameful and outrageous that the Indian President pays respect to a saffron charlatan, who exploits the gullible by claiming that he can produce "holy ash" from thin air, cure all illnesses, has created the universe and other nonsense more. It aggravates the case against President Kalam that he did not content himself with performing a kind of public relations routine, but went out of his way praising and glorifying the charlatan.

“I have immense love for Sai Baba”, Dr. Kalam said in his speech at Sai Baba’s headquarters in Puttaparthi. “I penned a poem in my mother tongue to greet Sai Baba on his birthday.” And he was not ashamed to read his poem (in a Telugu translation of the Tamil original) publicly to the cheering crowd of Sai Baba devotees. The rather embarrassing piece glorified Sai Baba as a glittering lighthouse and symbol of goodness. Because of Sai Baba’s presence, the President of India rejoiced, the earth was the most blessed planet in the solar system.

This is not only extremely silly and in bad taste. It is moreover irresponsible and undignified to a degree that is not compatible with the august office of the Indian President. President Kalam has misrepresented India and betrayed the trust of her people. India deserves a (more) dignified and responsible President.

Sanal Edamaruku
President, Indian Rationalist Association and
Rationalist International

India’s President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam & Satya Sai Baba

The scientist-President & the exposed miracle man

It is deplorable that there are still many poor people in India, who are deprived of basic education and who don’t have any opportunity to develop scientific literacy. They are easy prey for frauds, fanning their fears and raising their hopes with “miracles” and promises of magical solutions for all problems. Miracle mongers and faith healers are inflicting a dangerous disease upon the weakest section of Indian society and have to be stopped by all means. It has to be one of the primary tasks of human development in India, to help the victims of superstition and blind belief to break the shackles of their archaic mindset and join the twenty first century.

Besides being the Indian President, Dr. Abdul Kalam is seen as one among the most prominent scientists of India and has raised great hopes for a better future, guided and protected by science. His concept “Vision 2020” promises to lead India smoothly into the orbit of the developed world. If a man of this stature and position uses his influence to come to the rescue a scandal-tainted godman, he commits a serious and unpardonable betrayal.

http://innaiahn. tripod.com