Just Chatting with Life

Friday, December 30, 2005

1000 Visits & Going

Today My Blog crossed 1000 views :) . Feels really good to reach this milestone. So here is my Ahem.. Acceptance speech -

Main sabhi visitors ko dhanyavad kehna chahoonga ( Mere anonymous bhaiyon aur unki behnon ko bhi ) . Aapki visit mere liye bahut keemti hai. Saath hi main aapke aur mere internet connection tatha modem ka bhi shukriya ada karta hoon. Main PG.com ka bhi aabhari rahoonga jisne mujhe is muqam tak pahuchne ka mauka diya. Main asha karta hoon ki yeh blog jaldi hi nayi uchaiyon ko chhuega .Aur , ant mein Bhartiya Prodyogiki Sansthan, Mumbai ko Mera jeevan bhar aabhar rahega.

Phew !! Tought to write in Hindi. Lekin , dhanyavad to Hindi mein hi dena tha. Aakhir, Dil hai Hindustani ;) . Kya Senti maara hai !!

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Some moments to Cherish.....

Many times during our lives we encounter some moments, which remain etched in our hearts. That moment need not be something that happens to me. But its impression is nevertheless lasting. Something like this happened to me today.

Getting into an IIT is dream come true for most students. But, for students from poor backgrounds or from villages , it is the pinnacle of their aspirations. Today, I saw a boy in our hostel being visited by his Grandma. She was leaving his room and there were tears in her eyes. All the way to the Autorickshaw, she kept looking at our hostel and caressing tha boys hair. I came to know of the whole story after she went. The boys parents died when he was just 10 years old. He comes from a very small village in Orissa. His Grandma raised him . He is a very brilliant boy and I am sure he must have gotten into IIT through sheer hard work and talent. His grandma must have always wished that her Grandson will do something that would have made his parents proud. And he fulfilled her dream by securing admission into India's Best Institute. Today was her first visit to our hostel. And though she did not say anything in front of us, her tears said a thousand words.

This was a moment which she will always cherish. And this was a moment which I will always cherish. I saw true happiness today. And nothing can be more touching than that . I am sure that many such untold stories are there in IIT. After all , it is a dream come true !!

Friday, December 23, 2005

Why Indiatimes.com sucks !!

I have been delaying this post for too long. In vain i waited for India's best known publishing house to improve its standards. On the contrary, the quality of journalism has really gone down. I will not comment on TOI in this post ( thats another story altogether), but i have to make comments on Indiatimes.com .

For a website that calls itself India's most popular website, the standard of the contents is absymally low. They rely so much on sensationalism that they come up with headlines which have little to do with the actual Story. See these links - Tendulkar Should play for team or quit and Tendulkar or Dhoni : Take your pick . When you go throught the stories you will realize that headlines are completely misleading. In case of the first article, Ranatunga has mentioned the names of all the senior players and yet only Sachin gets the Headlines. Nowhere in the headline is it mentioned that It is a comment by Ranatunga. And again, just because Ranatunga has said it, does it in any way justify Indiatimes putting up this headline ? This is a case of bad journalism at its worst.

Same goes for the second story too. The entire story is on Dhoni and Tendulkar's name has been mentioned only once. And yet from the headline you might be forgiven for thinking that Tendulkar is suffering from a massive loss in popularity. What were these guys thinking ? The answer is that this is the only way they will make sure that the reader will visit the article. Its quite easy for Indiatimes actually. For ages now, they have been putting up misleading headlines.

They also advertise their photo gallery very prominently on the website. 9 out of 10 times, the photo is of some semi-naked girl. I guess they know the pulse of the average (male ) visitor very well. But, are such tactics justified for "India's most popular website" . Here are some more gems from today's site - Kinky Shoes , 20 wild babes you will never want tamed . Hats off to Indiatimes , Their contents have touched a new low. In contrast rediff.com and yahoo.com carry much more sensible stories .

Well, in a way i am glad that they put up the Tendulkar headlines. It allowed me to speak out much more passionatly about the issue. From now on, it is out of my Favorites list. I really do hope more people follow suit .

Thursday, December 22, 2005

The year of the Indian Blog

Indian Blogs Rocked this year. Check out this article on rediff.com . Blogging in India has indeed come a long way since it was a prerogative of a few geeks with money and time to spare on a dialup connection. The defining moment in the Indian Blogosphere came when Bloggers united against IIPM. The Tsunami Disaster also highlighted the power of blogs. A reputed Publishing house sued a blogger and in doing so gave even more recognition and credibility to blogs .

So if you ain't into blogging yet; what are you waiting for , Blog On !!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Some More IITB Pics

SOM Foyer

SOM Building Side

Som Building Front

ERP Classroom

Classroom 1

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Mallus Compulsis Accentia

Mumbai , 20 December ( phookas.blospot correspondent) ,

Eminent Sociologists and Psychologists have recently announced the discovery of a new species called as Mallus Compulsis Accentia . This species is found in abundant numbers in scores of malls across the length and breadth of India. It is characterized by the large amount of shopping bags that it accumulates on weekly basis and the strange obsession with anything having the word Mall in it. This is a highly social species and tends to move in groups of varying sizes.

Experts are baffled by the seemingly endless capacity of shopping possessed by this species. Members of species don't mind paying exorbitant prices for products that would cost half the amount elsewhere. This species has a strong affinity for International Brands and would not be caught dead wearing anything other than a Levi's, Allen Solly, Red Tape, Ray-Ban and Nike. They dislike shopping anywhere else and are prepared to die defending their favorite mall. Strangely enough, the title of Favorite mall changes hands anytime a bigger and even more expensive mall opens up. Their affinity towards malls is so much that many times they come to the malls with shopping the last thing on their minds. In case of males this can be explained by the desire to goggle at the female of the species who are inexplicably clad in tightest and shortest of clothes. Psychologists have been hard pressed to find a reason for this species' desire to participate in silliest of contests and generally make a big fool of themselves in front of large crowds. This species is also characterized by the desire to eat at the food courts where the cuisine and prices range from absurd to ridiculous. Oh! And as water is never served at these food courts, they only drink mineral water.

These animals move in packs of varying sizes and composition. In case of a family, the pack is led by a male with an amazingly big paunch and a wallet to match. His wife is always dressed according to the fashion of the day and often suffers from the delusion that age is only in the mind. They are accompanied by 2 or 3 kids all of whom are dressed impeccably in international brands and speak perfectly accented English. The second type of group is a mixed group consisting of young males and young females; all of them armed with numerous credit cards. This group behaves in a most peculiar manner. They have a constant urge to use words like dude, yo baby, bucks, chill and many more absurd words which look out of place everywhere except for perhaps a meeting of American teenagers. They will always take care to flaunt their mobile phones and speak in the loudest voice possible leading to a possible hearing damage amongst innocent passersby. These youngsters are characterized by low-waist jeans which are worn as low as possible. According to experts, this is a characteristic of both males and females. The only differentiating factor is what the person is trying to show off. The male displays amazing foolishness in thinking that displaying the label of his internationally branded underwear will end up making him the coolest being on earth. The female of this species falls into the deadly trap of trying to attract boys by showing off the skin of their backs and that ultimate turn-on: Belly Button. This species shows amazing disregard for the repulsion which others feel when having to endure looking at this spectacle during their stay at the mall.

All the members of this species speak in strangely accented English that fails to hide what essentially is a pitiful attempt to sound cool. Of course, this accent is not remotely close to actual American or English accent and the speaker ends up sounding like Bill Clinton trying to speak Tamil. Their accented speech is liberally peppered with the words that have been mentioned above. Experts are at a loss to explain why they choose to speak in English when they can perfectly talk in Hindi or their own regional language. What further amazes linguists is that other members of these species can always make out what others are speaking in spite of the incomprehensible accent.

This species has recorded one of the highest rates of growth and has really proliferated in last 3 years. Experts predict that their numbers are going to increase at even greater rate and very soon they will overtake Pagus Threenis horribilum as the dominant life-form of Indian Metroes.

This study was sponsored by the Mall Owners association of India. A detailed report can be obtained free of cost at any of the big city malls provided the person demanding can successfully demonstrate the characteristics of this species.

- phookas.blogspot News Bureau

Sunday, December 18, 2005

The Stranger Within Me

Here's another poem -

All the world was asleep ,
The night was dark and deep,
As I lay prone on my bed,
Like the corpse of a dead.
I lay staring at the wall,
Then I heard someone call,
Suddenly I was there before me,
Or was it the stranger within me ?

“Hey! you idiot “ ,yelled he ,
his eyes too bright to see.
“what are you doing here “,
I could just sit and stare
At this ghostly scepter floating,
Swaying and yelling and waving.
I was there talking to me,
Or was it the stranger within me ?

“How are you separated from me? “
I asked, stunned, gazing at me.
Said he,” your life is now done’
‘Now we shall fly away to heaven”.
With this he lifted me and took me
Onto heaven with the stranger within me.


Day and Night

A poem from my pen -

On the wings of clouds,
Wearing their invisible shrouds,
Two angels got into a fight,
One was day and the other night.
“I am the better one “, declared night.
Day countered,” not a hope of winning this fight”.

“I am the carrier of happiness and sunshine’
‘While you are the haven of crook and swine”
On hearing this night just shook it’s head.
“Mine is the time of rest and going to bed”
Whispered day,” also the time of living dead”
“Silence”, said night, “ for I bring respite ‘
‘ from the heat and dust and blinding light.’
‘ I shower the beauty of stars and moon’
‘ seeing which nightingales sing and lovers swoon”.
“the sunshine, happiness and nature are all mine’
‘while darkness rules in your time ‘
‘people wait impatiently for me’
‘and not another night they want to see”.
Countered night, “ I am the reliever of plight’
‘all of which comes at your sight” .

Sun heard their voices and came about
And asked what was there to fight and shout.
They poured their sentiments on sun Which just smiled and said -
“both of you are the best as one is my father and the other my son “

- Rahul

Time Just Flies by.......

Time is a funny sort of fella. When you need him the most, he is never there. When he is there , you never know how he goes away. We are continuosly chasing him and yet he never comes back. He has a most mechanical routine and still we cannot adjust to his routine. He will tempt you in thinking he is there but when you turn to him, the fella is nowhere to be seen. Sometimes we think he is slower than a snail but sometimes he seems to be faster than a ferrari. He has been us since the beginning of life. The one constant thing in this changing world. Man has tried to travel with him but is nowhere in that endeavor. He brings with him great changes and yet never changes himself. If we can catch him ,we become the masters of our fate. But alas, in this never-ending race we are always number 2. Time will always fly by .......

Great Quiz by IIMI

Check out this link. Great quiz compiled by IIM Indore guys. I have worked on it for 10 hours and still stuck on 25th level( 4 more to go) . It will test your grey cells like never before.
Click Here

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Absolutely Shocking !!

I had mentioned a few posts back about the supposedly tolerant democracy. Here is more food for thought. Some of the posts are absolutely shocking. I cannot believe that people will stoop to such levels because of their regional patriotism . Long live Indian Democracy .
Read here

Some IITB Pictures

View from Sameer Hill

Our Hostel at IITB

View of the Mess from the Hostel

Hostel With Sky Bridge in View

IITB Main Building

View from The Hostel , Hiranandani Towers in Distance

Whats in a name ?

Karnataka Goverment has taken the Decision of changing Bangalore's name to Bengalooru. In order to justify this decision, they have quoted the examples of Bombay ( Now Mumbai ), Madras ( Now Chennai ), Calcutta ( Now Kolkata) . Such type of changes require a long time to sink in. Especially when the old names have been around for such a long time. I know of people who still call Chennai as Madras ( Recall Srikanth in Fourth Umpire) . Bombay is still called as Bombay by a large fraction of its own residents. When VT was renamed as CST in Mumbai, there was a widespread support for the decision. But even now when i travel in the locals, I find a majority of crowd still calling it VT.

There is more to it than simple habit.These old institutions and names form a special place in everyone's hearts. They develop a certain attachment with them and that is why find it difficult to change their habits. One very good example of this is the India'a premier academic institutes. IIT Bombay is still called as IIT BOMBAY and not IIT Mumbai . And mind you that is the official name ( you'll find it at the entrance) . IIT Madras has not been renamed as IIT Chennai . Similarly, IIM Calcutta has not been renamed as IIM Kolkata. Now i wonder why the governments have not focussed their attention on changing the names of these institutions. Is it because these institutes have forged an identity of their own which is independent of the city they are in ? Going by this logic, renaming of Bangalore is not such a good idea. Bangalore has become synomonous with an Emergent India, An India that is world leader in IT & IT Services. Why, they have even formed a new word "Bangalored" . What i am trying to say is that Bangalore represents much more than just a name.

And that is why renaming Bangalore is a bad idea. I dont subscribe to the school of thought that if we continue using Anglicised names , we have a colonial Hangover. The hangover exists in the minds of The politicians who waste their time and energy in pursuing such fruitless exercises. More than 50 years have passed since INdia has become independent. You stop a person on the road and ask him if the Bangalore brings in his mind the Colonial rule and the answer in all probability will be NO. But our already bankrupt state governments waste a large amount of Taxpayers money in implementing such fruitless exercises. Would this money not be better spent if they were to invest it in some Welfare activity. But sadly, Judicious use of public money has never been a forte of Indian Politicians.

What next ? Indraprastha in place of Delhi, Patliputra in place of Patna ? After all ,whats in a name !!

A Tribute to Sachin

Sachin's record-breaking century has evoked wonderful sentiments from his fans. Here is terrific ode to the Master by my friend Mayuresh Wagh . Read on -

The day of December 10 will be marked as the most golden day of Indian cricket. The day when the 'sun' of India was seen at His brightest. The day when He, as usual, proved that he was nothing less than God himself. The day, the glorious day, when the entire world, as usual, was up on its feet to pay respect to the Big Litttle Master. The historic moment, when a single man showed the world the mettle, the character, the consistency, the power, the talent, the charisma, the hypnotism and the unspoken aggression which he is made of - and is revealed and expressed best only through his statistics, again, as usual.

The man has never had to open his mouth about all the TOMFOOLERY against him and the so called aggressive SLEDGING techniques follwed by the weak who call themselves strong. Little do they know what aggression is. Little do they know the difference between aggression and arrogance, between ego and self esteem, between life and death.

As feelings overpowered life, the moment of extreme anticipation, tremendous excitement, unmatched historical importance and uncountable prayers approached, when He was on strike on the highest two digit number. And as the white leather hit the wood, exceptional emotions erupted from the nation's soul.

A roar, which the lions would have heard in awe; a smile, which the most beautiful people would have adored with envy; a tear, heavier than the Mumbai rains of 26th July; and an upsurging wave of heartfelt emotions more powerful than the Tsunami was conceived in the soul of every cricket lover.

My salute to the most successful cricketer on Earth, the most respected batsman in the cricketing fraternity, the most dangerous ghost of Shane's nightmares, the most modest human being the world has seen, the man who fought the scariest of storms in Sharjah to see India through, the most committed professional, the whitest of all angels, the MAN who had the power to attend his father's funeral and yet score a century the next day, the DAREDEVIL who took the Shoaib bull by the horns, the one-man army, the only one actually comparable to Bradman, the most popular idol amongst the young , the highest tax payer in the country, the heart, blood and veins of the Indian body. Cheers to life, to glory, to success, all epitomized by the God of religion of cricket.....Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar.

Thank you Sachin, thank you for everything. You have made us proud........ As usual.

- Mayuresh Wagh

Monday, December 12, 2005

My First Local Journey

After my last post on Mumbai Locals, many people have asked me whether it was an account of my own journey. I was my own journey, but i had posted it from a different perspective. So here is my account of my first local journey -

I have been living in Mumbai for 6 months now and like everyone else, I have formed a love-hate relationship with the city. If someone were to ask me the one thing that I love about Mumbai, I would say the Mumbai locals. If someone were to ask me the one thing I hate about Mumbai, still my answer would be the Mumbai Locals. It is the sort of relationship that the locals form with a Mumbaikar. He may hate its crowd and its heat, but in his heart he will always love the locals.

Flash back to the time when I came to Mumbai for the first time. I was staying with my cousin at Mulund. Now, Mulund is the last suburb of Mumbai. It is a mere 50 km from Colaba which is the other end of Mumbai. As fate would have it, I had to travel to Coloba for an interview. And that too alone. My cousin gave me loads of advice on the dos and don’ts of the Locals. Don’t stand in the middle, take care of your wallet …blah…blah. Now, I considered myself a grown-up person who can very well take care of himself. I thought, what the heck, I will do this easily. Alas! The crazy confidence of youth was to fail me yet again.

First task was buying the ticket. There were two lines and I got into the shorter one. I was wondering why people were joining the longer queue when this one had hardly 5 people. I realized my folly when I reached the counter and was informed not-so-politely by the guy that this was a season ticket line. The look he gave me could have killed a thousand Ravans. So, with some apprehension, I joined the other queue. After an interminable wait, I finally reached the counter. Now the ticket was for rupees 11 and I gave the guy a 500 rupees note. He looked at me as if eyeing a repulsive member of the Reptilia. He then made a big show of counting the change before giving. People behind me were now getting restless and I was looking for a hole in the ground where I could hide. After an interminable wait I finally got the ticket and the change and scampered to the over bridge. My pride was injured by the thousand daggers I got from the people behind me in the queue.

When I came to the over bridge, I realized that I had no idea which platform to go to. So, I swallowed my remaining pride and asked a bystander about the platform. On reaching the platform, I thought that my troubles were over. I confidently strode the center of the platform and waited for the train to come. When the first local came, I thought my worst nightmare had come true. I had never seen such a crowded train in my life. People were hanging on to the compartments by their fingertips. Temporary paralysis struck me and I didn’t move for 20 seconds, which I realized was the time the local stopped at the platform. Two more trains came by before I came out of the temporary coma. The vendors and shoe-polish wallahs were eyeing me strangely now. I knew that I had to summon courage and accomplish this mission. So in true tradition of my brave forefathers, I braced myself for this do-or-die task. The local came; I gave a loud war-cry and charged to the compartment. The enemies were brushed aside, the opposing barricade was broken and I was in the compartment. Victory to the brave, I would say. Of course, my troubles were far from over.

Being Mumbai, it was very humid and I was hosting a thousand waterfalls 5 minutes into the journey. Now I am pretty tall, but if you have the disadvantage of height, then you are in for a tough time. Your nose is pushed up against somebody's sweet smelling armpit. You can’t see anything besides a thousand varieties of shirts and trousers. If you are lucky enough, you can snatch some fresh air from the window. Back to me now. There were a thousand voices babbling all around me. I wondered at people's ability to carry on conversations amidst such a crowd. But wait, there were more surprises in store........ There was a guy sleeping soundly while hanging on to the bar!! I was astounded and my astonishment increased manifolds when I noticed that he was not the only one sleeping. My eyes popped out when I saw an impeccably dressed gentleman calmly reading the newspaper!! Suddenly there was a sound and I jumped, if such a thing were possible in the local. I turned around and saw a hawker trying to peddle his wares to me. I was close to total insanity when suddenly a station came and I realized that I was in the way!! Now this station was Dadar, where half the Mumbai gets off and on the train. I didn’t stand an iota of a chance. I was carried onto the platform with the mob getting off. By the time I fought my way out of the crowd, the local was gone. There I was, halfway from my destination, clothes all ruined, confidence gone for a toss and desperate to reach VT at any cost. I debated about taking a Taxi but 11 Rs vs. 300 Rs. was just too much. So, gathering my remaining courage, I braced myself for another battle. I got onto the compartment but not before 4 locals had whizzed by. Fear was written in large CAPITALS across my face.

I completed the journey somehow and upon reaching VT raised my hands in the air. I had done it. I had climbed the Everest and survived. I thought about my parents and how proud they would be. My confidence Bruised and battered, I had completed the epic journey which was second only to Frodo’s journey to destroy the ring. Literally running, I reached my interview 10 minutes late. The company people were considerate enough to let me sit for the interview, but not considerate enough to give me a second chance when I bumbled and stumbled my way through interview. Now I had to go back. The arrogant youth in me called for another epic journey back in the local. I calmly shut him up, went outside and called a taxi to take me home. After all, there was no reason to climb the Everest twice!!

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Bow to the Master !

The master has silenced his detractors, made his fans delirious, created history and earned his rightful place in the record books. Sachin Tendulkar scores his world-record breaking 35th century to claim one of cricket's most coveted records. The Run-Machine is Dadar is toppled my the curly-haired boy from the Shardashram School . No one will be more happier than Sunny Gavaskar to see his beloved Sachin break the Record.

He credibilty as India's top batsman was in question, furtive voices demended him out, fans were despondent, critics felt he was past his prime. And yet the MASTER has proven everyone wrong. It is the true sign of a champion when he rises forth when hope is lost. Through the rains of Chennai and Kotla's fog, Sachin's light shines and with him shines entire India who had been waiting so long for this moment.

Stand up and clap : The master awaits !

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Beep Beep ! Its Mobile spam !

You wake up in the morning. Brush your teeth, have breakfast and turn on your computer. Log into your mail account and the first thing that you see is - "Enlarge your p****" , "Free mobile phones" , " Online Casino ! Play Now ! " ....... and you feel like tearing your hairs out. Spamming is one of the most irritating things ever invented by mankind. Still, stopping spam in email is somewhat easier because of the numerous anti-spam tools that are available. But, a new type of spamming has emerged ( Ah! the eternal innovative spirit of humans ! ). Its Mobile Spam !

There is hardly anyone who hasn't been a victim of this. Everyday i recieve a message from orange - " Play this game and win exciting prizes" , " Watch trailors on GPRS" , " Download exciting new ringtones " and so on.... And the funniest thing is that to avail of any of the exciting offer, you simply have to make a call which is charged at a measly 6rs/ min. Now who wouldn'nt be happy to pay 6 rs/ min to know more about this amazing offer. And they never give you full info in one msg, you have to msg 2-3 times before you get the full picture and by that time your talktime has taken a healthy beating.

The timing of these mobile spams is absolutely spot on. Just when you are in deepest of deep sleeps, or sharing a tender moment with your girlfriend, or trying to study for an important exam, your ubiquitous mobile will ring happily heralding the arrival of another "amazing offer" . There is no cell service provider who is not guilty - be it orange, airtel , BPL, Idea, Dolphin, Reliance or Tata. They will even call you up regularly to offer you the same scheme which you have rejected n number of times !
The worst thing is that there is very little that we can do to stop this. It is upto the service providers to act reponsibly and send out only important and relevant msg. The day is not far when we will recieve a msg on our mobile to "enlarge our p****" . I hope the world will move to something else by that time ( such as piegons or smoke signals ) .

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Tolerant Democracy : Think again !

For a long time, Indians have been living under the illusion of "anekta mein ekta" or " Unity in Diversity" . I call this an illusion because it is no longer true. But was it true when the slogan was coined to describe a New India ?

The Independence was marked by the ugly spectacle of Partition. Hindus and Muslims hated each other like never before. Millions lost their lives. Even greater numbers lost their homes. A new nation was born - Pakistan. A nation whose very existence is built up on the foundation of religion. The Indians distanced themselves from the religious extremism of Pakistan by procliaming itself as a secular democracy. The Indian Constitution is a shining testimonial to secularism. The only thing which it stopped short of doing was a Uniform Civil Code. Imagine how this nation would have changed if a UCC was implemented right at the time of Independence. But the circumstances were different then and this idea was not practical.

India moved on, albeit a bit slowly, with generous ideological and financial help from Russia. She fought 3 wars with Pakistan. Religious extremism hadn't raised its ugly head until then. The first signs came in late 70s with the rise of the Khalistan Movement. Suddenly Punjab became a state strife with terrorism. Innocent people were killed, life became extremly difficult in Punjab. Millitants took over the Golden Temple in Amritsar and Operation BlueStar Was called for. A successful operation met its tragic end when Indira Gandhi was gunned down by Militants. Thankfully, within a few years, this movement all but disappeared and Peace prevailed in Punjab .

Meanwhile , other parts of the country - Assam, Manipur, Tamilnadu were simmering . But terrorism in India reached its pinnacle with Kashmir. It was back to the old conflict again - Hindus against Muslims. A beautiful valley was now torn by terrorism, Kashmir became an army state, Hindus were slowly weeded out of Kashmir. Pakistan supported this as overtly and covertly as they can. Thousands have lost their lives, the paradise on earth now lay in tatters. An uneasy peace was brokered, but the tension and the mistrust remains.

Mistrust is the key here. There was always a certain amount of mistrust between the communities . But this mistrust was heightened by several events such as Terrorism, The Bombay Blasts, and the Rise of the Hindu extremist. The Hindu Extremist came to prominence with the Babri Masjid Demolition, it strengthened its stature after the Bombay Riots, came to the front page with the Gujrat Riots and now is fast catching up with Muslim Extemism. Muslim Extremism is feared around the world. Any kind of extremism, be it Hindu or Muslim is to be feared, because extremists have a very one-dimensional view of the world. They are the height of selfishness and fanatically devoted to a cause. Whether the cause is right or wrong is immaterial . And it is this Fanaticism that makes it dangerous.

Now there is a big mistrust in people's minds. Hindus mistrust Muslims, Muslims mistrust Hindus, North Indians mistrust South Indians, Bengalis mistrust Gujratis, Marathis mistrust Biharis, eveyone mistrust everyone other than his/her community. No one will openly admit it, but it exists . This has become so deep-rooted in peoples minds that it is very difficult to learn to trust again . To the extent, that some Hindus hailed the rise of "hindu" Chhota Rajan because he was against the "mUslim" Dawood Ibrahim.

Is this a tolerant democracy ? I don't think so. It is like a volcano that is lying dormant. It may not erupt for a long time. But when it does, all Hell Will Break Loose .