23 August 2010

Dear Government (UPA, BJP, X Y & Z)...

To the Government of India
Including all Opposition Parties
And half-political entities, like the Sena
And puppets (Santa Singh)
Well wishers, neighbors & supporters,

As a citizen (who regularly pays all my taxes, Income, Cessation, Education, VAT, Service) I'd like to know the deadlines for the following issues and the plans that are in place to curb/fix/address them.

  • What is happening with Inflation? What serious measures has the government taken to curb and control inflation? What is the target inflation that has been set to check and measure the success of these policies?

  • Is the government currently providing licenses to doctors opening up clinics? How is that there are so many clinics set up in rural and township areas encouraging women into getting hysterectomies for menial issues, like an irregular periods or stomach cramps?

  • Why is that India has lesser legislation that allows women to become surrogate mothers to foreign women so easily?

  • What is being done to control the trafficking of children and women across borders?

  • How are we ensuring our street children are not being used, abused and molested by sex tourists?

  • Why are we still 'talking' to Pakistan about the 100 odd issues? Why can't we adopt a stronger policy that would be emblematic of the amount of money we spend every year on the military? Why don't we take lessons from China on how to freeze out an enemy? Why do we spend so much on border control and troop stationing? Do we need such a large army of men with technology around?

  • Why is everyone talking about a super-bug? Why are they saying it's because doctors in India prescribe broad spectrum antibiotics to the populace making us overly resistant to all kinds of drugs? Have we set up information counters to counteract such negative information at all the embassies ensuring that our medical tourism does not get affected? Should I as a citizen do something different to protect or screen myself for it?

  • What can I do to find out why the roads around my house are not tarred? Why is the empty plot of land near the house a landfill that even the rubbish collectors dump garbage onto?

  • Why are there still goondas around? Can't we use the military to take them out?

  • Why does Bangalore still have a curfew of 11 30 am? If it is to keep the city safe, are we saying that our law enforcement capacities are such that we need to force citizens inside homes to ensure that they are safe? If we need to take safety into our own hands, can we cut police budgets? Can't we bring in the military to take care of drunk drivers?

  • What permanent measures are being enforced to ensure that the power crisis in Bangalore does not continue into the new decade?

  • What's going on with with all the cases stuck in the courts? Property disputes, divorce cases, criminal cases? What's being done to speed up the process?

  • Why have our national museums been rated as being poor in upkeep and public interaction?

  • Why are the zoos kept so poorly? Why don't we let the animals free in the wild and then save more money on pretending to use some of the tax money to upkeep these facilities? As a matter of fact, looks like common citizens have the ability to sponsor zoo animals.. then why do we also pay tax for them?

  • Why are we wasting so many resources that we can use to promote an ecological revolution that will on the long run turn out to be cheaper? Can't the government learn from corporates that utilize 'being eco friendly' to cut costs?
  • Why does every one keep calling us a developing country with so much growth and blah and bleh and bluh, when there has been so little movement across the class structures that had been in place 50 years ago?
The list of questions can go on and on and on. And on. It would be nice for once for everyone to stop the squabbling and start metting out policies that can be felt. I do strongly believe we're dancing on the edge of a cliff, and the more people think the more we will realize that most of us, rely on ourselves for our own security. It would be nice to know for once, that the government has our backs, and I don't care how it's done, even if it means the government employs the services of a good PR agency, but I'd take a sense of security any day over the mumbo jumble haphazard cacophony that I feel every time I open any piece of media on the state of affairs in the country.

21 August 2010

KFC- Not so nice anymore!

I love KFC. I've been eating it since I was 8 and it's always been a celebration to go there and I have to admit, it is finger licking good. I can smell a KFC before I see it, and my saliva glands cheerlead all the way to the ordering counter. But..





Watch more videos at KentuckyFriedCruelty.com.

The decision is yours. But before you make it, be informed.

16 August 2010

Tea & Demerara


I love tea. Not the way Jane (bff) loves tea but more so than the average Indian. I discovered something over Christmas this year, whilst grocery shopping for a list that called for this wonderful thing called Demerara Sugar, that escalates the pleasure to new heights.

What is it?

Natural brown sugar (like real sugar, not heroin) that tastes delicious. It has a wonderful way of combining itself with the other ingredients in what ever your making, to become part of the dish. So the dish is never just sweet, but sweet with the flavors that you've added to your..in this case tea. And to boot, it's healthier than your average refined white sugar.

For those of you who do share my obsession over tea, do try the following. It's yummy, especially with the weather these days.



Grocery List


Cinnamon- A 1/4 stick
Chocolate Tea (I got my packet from Ooty)- 2 tsp
Water- 2 cups
Milk- As you wish
Demerara Sugar- As you wish

To make:

1. Add cinnamon stick to the water give it a boil for a minute or so, and then add tea and sugar.

2. Filter and add milk/cream as desired.

The combo is delish, I did have some yesterday with a pinch of nutmeg added as well. If you do try this out, let me know what you think of it.

07 August 2010

METER JAM

SAY NO TO AUTOS ON 12 AUGUST 2010.

METER JAM




Goodbye



This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 13; the thirteenth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.



It started with a dream, of big buildings and sky scrappers. A shiny coin, revolving, with the head of a woman, with the slightest smile. A land of presents, happy smiles and lovely people. White, yellow and black were the skins. New chocolates, flavors of ice cream to taste. We were going to live in "Foreign" with Father.

We packed up all our things, said good bye to Father's family of twelve: aunts, uncles, grandparents and cousins. I waved out to everyone on the street, and kept waving to everyone I saw on the way to the airport. Here I come you chocolates!

It was the airplane that took us, and I saw on the clouds in the sky, pieces of lost jewelery. They glistened with the sun rays that hit them. It made sense then, that that's how people who flew away from this country, to Foreign always came back rich and loaded with presents and chocolates. Not to mention rice cookers.

We met a happy Father, holding his hands out to us. I did not run, in fact I was shy. I hit in the folds on my mother's sari, and watched my brother run out to him. I looked around instead, at Foreign. It was crowded, and it was cold. And it didn't smell like anything at all.

But that was to hide what was to come next. We came out of the airport, unnoticed. Nobody offered to take our bags and my father whisked the trolley away towards the car park. My brother took an empty trolley and drove it behind my father. He was followed by Ma, who told him to be careful and not hit anyone on his way.

I looked back at the airport, and up at the airplane. And then heard my Ma calling, and ran behind her. It took an hour to get home. I'd fallen asleep in the car, the roads were boring and quiet. No hustle and bustle. The the unpacking started, I wished it wouldn't take so fast, the smells of home rushed out with every suitcase that got opened. And as quickly as it came, it disappeared to be replaced by the moist, humid earthy smell of Foreign.

I looked around the house, it was big, but it was only us in it. It then occurred to me that that's why my grandparents cried, when we left. I worried about being fed, when the parents were at work. My Ma seemed happy with Father and her on the couch talking. My brother had placed himself in front of the tv, proudly navigating through the channels of a foreign TV.

I sat on a chair and looked at the wall in front of me. And for the first time since I had that dream of Foreign I thought, of all that I had left behind. This was Foreign. I was here. But what was I to do here? Where were my friends? And the rest of my family? I wanted to step out of the house, but the grill was locked. This was new, our joint family household's door wasn't locked till it was time to sleep. I put my mouth on the grill, and tasted paint. The iron did not taste the same!

I went to the fridge and got confused. Boxes and boxes of food everywhere. Nothing was anything I knew anymore! I could feel the pressure of Foreign building up in my head, the faces of places from memories flashed before my eyes and out came the lone scream and the tears. This was a horrible place to be, I felt. No wonder everyone that went, always came back! I wanted to go back home now! NOW!



The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.

01 August 2010

A death

My grandma passed away today. I sent a few messages with the same five words to let the people close to me know, that I wouldn't be alright for a few days. I didn't know much about her, except for the fact that she was independent, open minded and that she shaped my mum.

And she thought well of me. And she knew I had a temper. And she knew I liked tea. We took her to the hospital last night, because she said she felt faint. The docs tested her out and gave her a clean bill. We came back, joked a bit about how old the doctor looked, and how I thought she should revert to the days when she loved mutton paya and the lot. Then I left, with no clear idea of when I would see her again.

I know before I went to see her, my mother said she liked drinking apple juice in the evenings and told me to get her apples. When I got a plate of apples, I told the lady that I would give her ten bucks extra if she gave me all the nice apples because I was getting it for my pati (grandma). And the lady gave me the good ones, and then put a couple more in the bag, repeating what I'd said.

Apparently she woke up this morning, but couldn't open her eyes. Non responsive they took her to the hospital again, and tried to resurrect her. She was responsive but could not open her eyes. As her pulse slowed down, she slipped away.

24 hours ago, I was joking with her. She was alive, and well, walking around and could smile. I remember her using her shawl to ensure she kept her modesty in tact yesterday. I remember her asking for her guddi (handkerchief) to wipe away sweat. I remember lifting her legs to fit the steps on the wheelchair we used to cart her into and out of the hospital. I remember now. I can't forget.

For someone who didn't know her grandmother too well, I guess, these will be the only memories I have of her. And they may not be much, but these are all I have. I know where ever she is, she is a happy person. Though I knew that all my life, I never heard her laugh. She just did what she had to do to get through the day, and at best, was content. Love you Amma Ma.