Tuesday, December 14, 2010


In the loving memory of my Friend who left me yesterday evening.

My dear friend was with me through the thick and thin for almost a year now.Had been with me like a true companion even when everybody else thought that they had too much of me and couldn't tolerate me anymore (but now it seems that it too couldn't shield from my ill effects, as they say access of anything is bad and excess of me can be really toxic).

Still remember the first day that my eyes caught the first glimpse... . my gaze stopped there and then. I had made my decision... , it was love at first sight... still remember the surprised look on Miss Mehta's face who was accompanying me on that day ( think she was trying to convey. "hey dude what the hell, at least ask me if I approve of the choice").

Then our unforgettable journey began ...

We were inseparable, we travelled to where ever I went no matter if anybody accompanied me or not... accompanied me when i was leaving Mumbai, all alone , for the hilly terrain of north.... was there with me when I travelling in the local bus in Punjab, .. was there when I was walking down the hill, drenched in rain in Haryana... together we admired the beauty and the beautiful people of Chandigarh.... was there when I travelled home.... was there when I travelled to the city of temples... was there with me on my B'day, when every one was trying to reach me but were not able to... was there when I returned back to Mumbai.

During all this time has been responsible for many of your smiles . Was responsible for the all those beautiful pics that you admired, was responsible for the those beautiful pics of Dal and the shikara's (even Strawberries) that I dedicated to Mrs Mallik. was responsible for those rare clicks of Mr and Mrs Mallik, was responsible for all those pics which reminded us of all those moments which we had forgotten (Mr & Mrs Mallik, Mota Bhai, Akshat, Bulbul, Astha, Miss Mehta, Vampy, Sumi and all the people in my contact list) ... was responsible for keeping you updated (via facebook, twitter etc) about my endeavours and misadventures.. reminded me of your birthdays, reminded me that how lonely I am with out you by playing all the weired music... reminded of the beautiful moments i spent with you by making me visit all those moments by the means of pics.

Till the end it kept me connected with my Family, with my loved ones, with my friends, the ones i call "spice of my life", it kept me connected with you. In the last moments was trying to make me talk with Ani.

There are no words to describe how much I will miss you. Sure nobody will be able to take your place but may be an Android will replace you soon provided my friends pitch in to fund for that. You will be missed my dear Nokia.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

New Order ...

Strange how certain things (incidents) change one's life dramatically and from that moment there is no turning back, you can't change back to what you were. The plans that you had till then are no more valid. You no more are you … the only thing that defines you now is that moment , that incident , that person.

When ever you get to this moment either (if you are lucky) your directionless, meaningless life suddenly finds direction and meaning or (if you happen to be unlucky) your all meaningful and sorted out life becomes chaotic and a mess. Either way feels like you have been hit by a meteor.

Don't expect, when this meteor hits you, it is going to bother anybody or anybody is going to bother about you, the world has come a long way from the Victorian era. Currently a major info war (world info war I) is going on and nobody seems to be bothered about. Every bad dream from the futuristic scifi movies and Ayn Rand novels is taking shape, no body seems to be bothered about them so why the hell do you think you matter.

What ever happens we humans never stop hoping for the best, we always think that the best times are just round the corner. Hope hope hope …. What keeps us up and kicking , hope!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Freedom At Stake .... Last Front!

Freedom.... a great word , a great feeling, a great expression; but now a dyas can be found only in Tales, movies and internet. Now the freadom on internet is also under attack, but almost all of us are unaware of it.Internet has become the only place where we can express ourselves freely and where from we can get the unbaised information, but seems that it is going well with the so called flag bearers of Freedom and Democracy. Here i am trying to warn you about this inevitable threat, am trying to let you know what is coming.(am reproducing an article by Chris Arsenault)

A new trade agreement being negotiated behind closed doors by officials from the United States, European Union and other countries could drastically reduce internet freedom, a group of more than 70 legal experts have warned.

The government of Barack Obama, the US president, could initiate the far reaching Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) at the beginning of next year, without a vote in congress, leading critics to call it anti-democratic in a letter released on Thursday.

"In serious negotiations like this, where standards are being imposed, there should be some debate," Chris Sprigman, a law professor at the University of Virginia, told Al Jazeera.

"Instead the Obama administration has brought this to an international forum where there is no legitimacy."

Normally, trade agreements dealing with intellectual property and other crucial issues are dealt with through established international forums such as the World Trade Organisation (WTO) or the United Nations.

These organisations, while frequently criticised, have established negotiating procedures and some degree of openness.

Secret talks

ACTA, however, is being negotiated by trade representatives in secret on a government to government basis, so critics say there is no accountability to the talks.

The agreement could force internet service providers to deny net access to people who repeatedly download content, lawyers have said.

The US and EU are promoting the agreement "at the bidding of content production industries" including Hollywood movie studios, record labels, software firms and drug companies, Sprigman said.

But the entertainment industry and other content producers say ACTA is crucial for protecting intellectual property, stopping digital piracy and stimulating new ideas and products.

"Increased broadband speeds and penetration make it easier to steal creative works through illegal revenue-generating sites around the world," US television and movie actors wrote in a March 2010 letter to Barack Obama in support of ACTA.

"American workers are … the most immediate 'victims' of rampant copyright theft over the internet - a threat which erodes their ability to earn a living," the actors wrote, applauding Obama for his remarks on "aggressive law enforcement" to "battle intellectual property theft".

Sprigman believes that large institutions who systematically infringe on copyright should be prosecuted, but the diffuse nature of the internet means arresting or charging average computer users who share content is a sign the government is going too far.

Draft copy

After facing mounting pressure over its negotiating tactics and secrecy, the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) first released a draft copy of the agreement in April 2010.

"The idea of the text is to get countries to ratchet up criminal penalties for copyright infringement," Sprigman said.

If the agreement comes into effect, security forces in countries which sign on could be under more pressure to criminally charge individuals who download movies or music from the internet if they are infringing on copyrights, he said.

The USTR has not invited comments on the text from the public and the US government has blocked the release of updated versions of the draft agreement, lawyers say.

The most recent consolidated text of the proposed deal is on the USTR’s website and dated October 2, but lawyers say this text is the same as what was released in April.

Sprigman said he became an activist on this issue because the "Obama administration promised they would run an open government" but now they are "pushing this non-transparent back room deal".

"They did it this way because they were afraid they wouldn’t be able to do it in the open," he said.

The agreement could come into effect at the beginning of next year.

Take care and start Downloading (music, ebooks, movies...) as much as you can, who knows what happens next year ;)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

God Save Us ......

On the morning of April 13, 1919 a boy had gone to Jallianwala Bagh, but in the evening he returned as Bagaht Singh. We all know history, we all know what happened and what were the consequences , but still we learn nothing from it. Baght Singh once said "deaf need a bang to hear", at the time he was referring to the British public ( even a portion of Indian People) who didn't seem to be bothered about what ever wrong was being done by the British Empire on Indian Soil.

History is Repeating itself , everyday Jallianwala Bagh is being repeated in Kashmir. But who bothers to take notice as long it not effecting their lives. But what we tend to forget is that every Jallianwala Bagh gives birth to a Baght Sing and every Baght Singh wants to make deaf people hear his voice. And When we hear a bang we are taken by surprise and try to figure out where it came from, when that bang effects our lives we tend to ask the questions why us , we have done nothing wrong to anybody. Without trying to figure out the reasons, we end up pointing fingers. Once my boss told me, "when ever you point a finger towards anybody remember that the rest three finger are pointing towards you".

Small events can have very great consequences. What triggered the metamorphosis of Gandhi into Mahatma Gandhi, a small insignificant event for British ( humiliatingly thrown out of the train). Let us suppose this event had not taken place, there is a chance that Gandhi would have never returned to India and continued to live a successful life in South Africa and Britain as a successful lawyer. Strange how small incidents can turn simple human beings into hardcore rebels.

There is a saying that the people who watch something wrong happening and do nothing about it are more responsible for the act than the person who commits the crime because it is the their silence that encouraged him to commit the crime. Same applies to us all, it seems that we no longer are bothered about what is happening around us. We keep silent no matter how inhuman and cruel our governments are, so we should be ready to bear the consequence of this silence later in future. Hope we all rise from our slumber and find the courage & humanity in ourselves to raise our voices against the brutality. Hope we don't need the bang to hear the voices of wailing mother whose teenage son was shot dead in front of her, the voices of the young widow whose husband was shot dead because he ventured outside his house to search for milk for his hungry son. I just hope that voices of the millions of Kashmir's are being heard and understand. Hope …… just can hope

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

LAMHAA .... Movie Review

Now days i am quit bussy trying doing nothing, so here i am reposting the movie review by Mr. Masook A Dar. Hope everybody is fine and busy with their lives .... wishing you best of everything. so now i leave you with LAMHA and till next time take care :)


Is Kashmir all about money? Do Kashmiri schools train their students to turn into Lashkar? Are innocent children used as human bombs in Kashmir? Have sex scandals to do anything with pro freedom groups? Are women used as Human shields in Kashmir? Is every pro-freedom group corrupt in Kashmir? And every pro-Indian group the messiah, these are the question that one has, when one comes out of the movie theater. Is this true or not can be a debate, but for Rahul Dholakia there is no such debate as his film ‘Lamhaa’ attributes all these things to this section of Kashmiri society.

In 2008 upsurge (Ragdaa – as was the name given by local Kashmiris), National Award winning director Rahul Dholakias' film came in news flashes. Since then millions of people like me have been waiting for the movie to release. The movie came into news and made headlines in June 2010 when Dholakia took the movie to Sri Lankan International Film Festival. The Government of India and the Censor board had some reservation in promoting the movie at International film Festival (Srilanka), But Dholakia and his crew stood firm and took the movie to Srilanka.

Rahul Dholakia in one of his statements said that, "'Lamha' is different from other films made on the plight of Kashmiris. This film is not from the point of view of the government or the politicians, it is from the point of view of the people of Kashmir," and even stated further that, "We faced no problems in Kashmir. Omar (Abdullah), the chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir is my friend and he provided us with full security. Also there was full support from the people."

It has been two years since I like million others were waiting for the movie to release. Finally, it was 16th of July 2010 when the veil was lifted and the wait was put to an end. Eager to see the movie I woke up early as I had to fetch the tickets, at the back of my mind I had the apprehension that the movie is from the Award winning director who has the credit of directing the much appreciated movie ‘Parzania’. When I reached the theater I found quiet a handful of guys waiting for the movie to start. I went straight away to the ticket counter and asked the guy if he could give me a better seat to sit. I was surprised by his statement, “sit wherever you want,” as a small crowd was turning to watch the much media hyped movie.

Now said this, I have two interpretations for the movie: a) as an insider – Kashmiri, and b) as an outsider – moviegoer. I will start my interpretation of Lamhaa as a moviegoer and later on come to interpret it as an insider in the second section of this writeup.

Lamhaa is about the highest militarized zone and conflict hit region Kashmir. The movie opens in 2009 and tells all about what was the condition in 1989 when the Natives of Kashmir turned refugee in their own country. Contrary to other movies based on Kashmir, in which Pakistan is depicted as villain (promoting insurgency and destabilizing not only the region but whole India) and India as hero (upholding its democratic principles and fighting for the noble cause), Lamhaa takes a middle route. Lamhaa ridicules all political leadership (across the borders), Military agencies, corrupt Businessmen, and Militant and Moderate factions. We are shown the miseries of Kashmiri people – Muslims and Pundits at surface level. Although the migration of Hindus from Kashmiri and the disappearances of Kashmiri Muslims at the hands of security agencies has nothing to do with the plot of the movie still it forms the essential part of the movie. It also shows us Dardpora village of Northern Kashmir where a large chunk of the women are half widows.

Vikram (Sanjay Dutt) is sent as an undercover agent, the parallels can be taken from any James Bond movie, on a high profile secret mission to Kashmir when the Indian intelligence gets information of a probable big terror attack in the valley. Separatist leader Haji (Anupam Kher) has been fighting against the Indian government since 1989 for freedom of Kashmir. Aziza (Bipasha Basu) supports her mentor (Haji) in his mission and Aatif (Kunal Kapoor), who is now a reformed militant, wants to contest elections from the valley to win his people and province.

Like in any conventional Hindi movie, for the protagonist Vikram, his job seems to be a child’s play. Vikram easily sneaks into much guarded police commissioner’s office in broad daylight and has easy access to all the information. He in no time finds a local tailor who has all the information about Kashmir- from politicians to intelligence agencies to separatists. Vikram, like any hero can easily convenience any body be it Peer Baba (Mahesh Majrekar) or Aziza (Bipasha Basu) and in this way he comes close to Aziza in unearthing the plot.

One finds it a little difficult to absorb the diverse characters and their ideologies. When the movie finishes the first thought which gets ones attention is do I know all the characters of the movie? The movie has overall got a good story and good star cast but really what matters is silence and slowness of the movie, which downgrades the quality of the subject. Though the movie attempts to touch several concerns like half widows of Dardpura village, sex scandals in which politicians are involved, disappearances of thousands of Kashmiri people and psychosis of Security forces (A reference in which one solider says that he has to work for mere 7000 bucks in such a difficult region). But these concerns are peripherally touched and are not a part of core narrative. Besides the picturesque land scape of Kashmir which is shown through the lens of Jamie Fowlds camera, there seems no editing work done in the movie as the camera movements from one seen to another annoys the audience however the background music is reasonably good. The next part of this review will be the interpretation of Lamhaa as an insider.

Looking at Lamhaa as an insider, I found a shift from the traditional Bollywood movies based on Kashmir. Lamhaa is neither a pro Kashmir film, nor an anti India film. It actually becomes difficult for the audience to place the movie on the conventional platform of either being pro or anti to something. Dholakia and his co-stars in all their interviews where of the view that the film reflects the feelings of common Kashmiri, which for me as a Kashmiri was hard to digest. If I had to sum-up it in one phrase I would borrow the phrase from Lamhaa itself - 'Beautiful Bollywood Drama'. The main problem of the movie is looking at the subject matter superficially as a layman. One can’t account financial transactions to every account of what is happening in Kashmir. Dholakias’ analysis of Kashmir problem seems to be political gimmick and financial transactions to which every organization as well as local people are a party, sidelining the sentiments and aspirations of Kashmiris. The movie in a way does not give weight to the political dispute of Kashmir and instead mocks at it. For Dholakia it is all about money, as he uses the word 'company' quiet a few times in the movie. It looks as if no intellectual thought is put in the movie; rather it looks some nationalist Indian in narrating the story from the heights of Surat (a city in Gujrat).

Being a Kashmir one can easily relate Haji and his associates to Veteran Kashmiri separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani and APHC respectively. Dholakia’s movie is no different from other Indian movies in a sense that all Kashmiri separatists are not true representatives of Kashmir. It shows them as professional moneymakers, which a large chunk of Kashmir population and Diaspora will disagree. Haji is shown as a schoolteacher who exploits his students and shows them the path of ‘violence’. The film portrays Kashmiri separatists and militants exploiting not only these innocent children but also women. The movie shows small children being used as human bombs and women folk as the torchbearers of Kashmiri freedom struggle. In a scene where Aziza is humiliated by a number of Kashmiri women wearing green bands on their forehead and veiled in black dresses, it does not take a minute for a Kashmiri to relate these women with Dukhtarani Millat. As I said earlier there is a scene where sex scandal, which made to news headlines in Kashmir is shown. But in the movie it is Aziza, a pro Kashmiri women leader who exposes the scandal. Vikram again comes to the scene where he gives proof to Aziza that it has links to Haji – Kashmiri separatists. An ordinary Kashmir will feel the pain the way Dholakia portrays him. It is a direct attack on Kashmiri sentiments and the concept of Kashmiryat.

It would not be unfair if I use dholakia’s phrase ‘Company’ here and argue that Kashmir is a big company for Bollywood. Film directors now and then come up with movies on Kashmir and try to do some sort of poetic justice with the sentiments of Kashmiris. But the truth is it is a company where they can earn not only name but also fame by playing with the sentiments of Kashmiri people.

A large part of the movie focuses on the conflict within the separatists; there is a section of them, which boycotts elections, and the other section, which are of the opinion that elections are the solution to the problem. One can find the references to the times before 80’s when Sheikh family came in favor of elections and some of Kashmir’s prominent leaders distanced themselves from the electoral process. Although the timeline Dholakia gives is present but relating it with past becomes more obvious. The movie ends up with young Kashmir leader (Aatif) wining the minds of people and eventually elections. It becomes difficult to understand whether Dholakia is of the opinion that electoral process is the solution of the problem or justifying pro-Indian political leaders as the messiah of Kashmir.

(Masrook A Dar is Research Scholar at EFL University, Hyderabad. Feedback at masrook@gmail.com)

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Big Bad Enemy, The Big Unifying Force

Once a famous psychologists said that every nation needs an Enemy to keep its people united, the bigger the enemy better it is. Whenever people of a nation have tried moving in different directions, threatening the fragmentation of a nation or when the people start asking questions regarding their development and progress, or some questions are raised which the people in power don't want to answer ….. Here comes the big enemy to their rescue. Whether it be IRS for Britain (Britain bombed its own people and blamed it on IRS), be it Germany or communism or terrorism for USA all came to the rescue of USA when it most needed them, be it communism for Germany (Hitler burned the German Parliament in order to pass the Enabling Act, which is similar to the current Patriotic Act of USA). Whenever India or Pakistan need its enemy to come to their rescue they just need to quote the term "Foreign Elements" so their work is done even without taking each other’s name!

I completely agree with the theory that the presence of a big bad enemy unites the people of a nation and converts millions of meaningless shouts in to a single vibrant and powerful voice. Just a thought, why can’t the fight with our enemies lead to development and progress! It is a universally accepted fact that fight with your enemy only can lead to destruction. So it seems idiotic to think of fight and progress at the same time. But won't you agree that if we all had just one enemy then we would work together to win against it. The collaboration thus generated among nations would help in the progress and prosperity of the people. So we can say that we don't need to change the way and determination with which we face & fight our enemies, we just need to change our enemy, we just need a different enemy. Now who can that enemy be, if we look at every country be it developed or developing and try to find a common enemy, who is so ferocious that every country is engaged in a losing battle with it. This enemy of all humanity is none other than POVERTY! Now is the time to come together and fight, fight for prosperity, fight for the right of every human being to satiate its hunger, in short ( the ending sentence of J.F Kennedy’s last speech before he was shot dead) " … with your help man will be what it was born to be - free and independent ". Mohammad Younus said, "Poverty is unnecessary", what do you think! Now the onus is on us whether we want to fight this fight or not.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Wana live in Memories ...

Strange how sometimes memories are more beautiful then fantascies. Today i just wanted to live in my memories, wanted the to begin my day on the same swing and wanted it to come to an end in the same way as it had ended ... But i am not God . I have been on road for over a month and have experienced many things. I came across a poem which could summerise every thing beautifully. But i am using my mobile blog so it would be better for me to leave it for next time, tilk then you take care :-)

Monday, April 5, 2010

"It Is A Beautiful Day"

Recently physicist said that they nearly simulated the Big Bang by colliding the sub-atomic particles . I too some how simulated the pre-Big Bang environment, where your existence becomes meaningless, silence is deafening and you try to make yourself busy with the meaningless things in order to divert your mind from thinking and asking questions like, what...? Why….? Where….? You try to invent different ways of killing time. Now I think I know why God created the world, why he created us.

It has been very long since I read something sensible or for that matter read anything at all and this should be evident from the waywardness of my thoughts . I tried many things to forget the existence of myself (everything else seemed to be too important to be forgotten) even tried music as a way.

"….. What ever you say , what ever you do
I will always say that you are the best thing
that ever happened to me…"

"….It's a beautiful day, the sky falls
And you feel like it's a beautiful day
Don't let it get away

You're on the road but you've got no destination
You're in the mud, in the maze of her imagination
You love this town even if that doesn't ring true
You've been all over and it's been all over you

It's a beautiful day
Don't let it get away
It's a beautiful day
Don't let it get away ……."

Turned to "Invictus" for inspiration but it didn't turn up to my expectations, seems that at times like these "kick-Ass" or "How to train your dragon" would had been a better choice, so looking forward to them. Some how feel like the lieutenant in "Forest Gump" at the time of the storm, perched on top of the boat shouting " … its time for a show down, you and me , I am right here come and get me … eee haaa".

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Dedicated to The Ever Elusive Freedom .....

Here is a translation of kashmiri poem written by zarif Ahmed Zarif, hope you like it

Young boughs, burnt buds
Flames are at the garden too
Dreams of love turn to ashes
Sleep scorched by fire too.
Who to tell, who’ll listen?
Read deeply each word,
In deep winter, summer’s blaze
The heart’s frozen in summer too
Mirror after mirror distorts faces,
Distorted too my own image ...
Waiting , waiting in vain for
The spring wind to come my way;
Drunk and frenzied, autumn’s grey
Covered its own redness too.
Inside, deep inside I’m ground to dust
Eyes robbed by the thief of sight
Heart after heart- a grave
Mourning quietens conversation too
Letter after letter pierced with lance
These times have banished learning
Pen after pen with tongues torn out
Shackles ring the city too
Flower after flower , wind scarred
The poppy heart glows with the scar
All my being bruised, says Zarif
Nothing left for the balm too ...... (Zarif Ahmed Zarif)