Friday, June 13, 2008

The Maximum City; Or Is it???

Hey, Back after a short break. This one comes from Mumbai. The break was for settling down here.
Well, the first couple of days were great and then came the rains, which people welcomed with great joy after the scorching heat that had gripped the city. But their happiness soon turned sour!! The Greater Mumbai region has the higest population for any metropolis in India. As I write this i got an article whose link i am pasting here. It says Delhi urban agglomeration with has the highest population in India.

Coming to the topic, the BMC (Brihan Mumbai Corporation) , the wealthiest corporation in the country promises a clean and a flood free city every year. But every time the same ting keeps on repeating. Accepted, it rains very heavily here and every place cannot be covered, but what I am talking about is the fact that at most of the places the basics are where the problem lies. Roads with potholes , the first couple of days of the 2 month long monsoon saw many areas under water; very slow infrastructure building...the Santacruz flyover for example has been taking ages. Spoke to some people and they tell me it takes 3 years to build a flyover in Mumbai while in Delhi the time is around 1.5 years!! May be its because of the political pressure. But I find beacuse of the aggressive nature of the populace of Delhi, things get done there, while here its taken for granted and called the "Spirit of Mumbai" that inspite of the rains people go along with their daily lives!!
Why this step motherly treatment to this city? Everyone wants to come to Mumbai and make it big.Mumbai has given so much to this country. 50-60% of the total tax collected in India comes from this place. Its hight time that the central govt cracks the whip as it did in Delhi and solve this once city of dreams' problems. Because a strong Mumbai is needed for a strong India!!

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Super Chennai through

I said to some of my friends before the semis, that it is NOT going to be a Rajasthan- Punjab final, well that has proved right,
Yen vazhi tani vazhi....the famous dialog of Rajnikanth from the movie Padayappa meaning "My route is a different route" is very valid for the Chennai Super Kings as well. First 4 matches, they got 4 wins and then became so unpredictable. You could argue that others were also like that, but Chennai was different from others. They would thrash Punjab in the league match and then lose to Delhi like a duck.
Anyways now all thats is history. Its Chennai v Rajasthan in the 1st ever IPL Final. What a moment its gonna be at the DY Patil tomorrow.
Heart says Chennai, but Warne is amongst my all time favorite. So I would want his team to perform as well.
Whatever happens tomorrow, I am a happy man because this is the best final I could have hoped for without Delhi.
This is my final blog from to Mumbai tomorrow.
Till the next one from Mumbai,

Friday, May 30, 2008

Magnificent Royals from Rajasthan

So, Rajasthan become the first team to enter the finals of the IPL, infact they thrashed Delhi and romped into the finals. This has been a match where one man with his brilliance in captaincy and fantatsic performaces from his bowlers who bowled to the field set have got the desired results. I would like to dwell a little into the field placings of the Royals.
One of the key wickets was that of Gautam Gambhir.Warne removed slip, gully for gambhir and placed them at cover and point. That means a packed off side field, and what does Watson do?? He bowls length balls out the off stump...that can be hit to covers or point and u have a fielder there waiting to take he catch
magnificent planning!!
Delhi lacked in their planning, though Sehwag talked a lot about the plans. There was plenty of bounce on the wicket and none of the Delhi bowlers exploited it!!! Watson and Munaf patel bowled magnificently.
For tomorrow, the heart is with Chennai, but lets see because Punjab are a great team and it would be pay back time for them as they lost bothe their league matches to Chennai.

Till then

Thursday, May 29, 2008

BRT in Delhi!

A tragic truth, but truth nevertheless!

This is a serious one - Delhi has the 2nd worst driving sense according to me after Hyderabad. One reason i feel is the constant honking and the second one, the broad roads. Cars want to travel not below 80kmph here. The other cities dont enjoy the facility of broad roads, so the speed is much lesser and hence the fatalities are less as well.
This may sound like something i might preach and not follow, but while going out this evening there was an accident that took place. The man was bleeding from his head. I was in an auto, and could see him struggling for survival. There were at least 30 people surrounding him and everyone was trying to stop the crowd from coming there. There was not even a single soul who tried to help the guy and put him in an ambulance. The police and ambulance were no where to be seen. I am still so ashamed at myself for not doing anything there, anyways I hope the police would have reached there on time.
This brings me to a couple of important topics. One, the now infamous BRT corridor project in some parts of the capital. For those who are new to this just a brief intro about the project. Its an exclusive bus lane with medians around it, so that the buses not interfere with other forms of traffic. Since there is only one lane for either direction (and median between them) the buses cant overtake each other. Bus stops are marked properly and new buses were introduced to ply on such roads. The basic purpose of the Govt was to reduce the number of private vehicles on roads and make people use public transport more. According to govt figures, 60-65% of Delhi's population uses public transport, while the rest 35-40% makes up the vast number of cars plying on Delhi's roads. (Delhi alone has more no of cars and two wheelers than Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai put together!!).
I would be critical of certain aspects of Delhi's mentality here. There was many people who feel its below their dignity to travel by public transport (however good it may be) and would never leave their cars!! South Delhi where this project was implemented has lot of "high class" people. So, the number of cars are obviously high there. The media in its bid to get more coverage and TRP, highlighted the "plight" of the car drivers! IIT Delhi which developed this project kept on urging people to use the buses. But the influential media in our country and specially Delhi made sure that the BRT was made to look like a Ravan and discarded!! My cousin uses the BRT daily and he says the travel time by bus from office in south Delhi to Moolchand hospital had reduced by 15-20 mins because of the separate lane for buses.
This brings me to the 2nd important issue that I planned to write. The media!!

I accept that media helped crack a lot of cases, brought in front many irregularities. But a closer look will tell us that all those cases were those of well to do people. They fight for justice in the Nitish Katara case, Aarushi case, Jessica Lall case, all were high figh people with great contacts. The reason? They were linked to some politicians and the channel can get the TRP by pulling the name. There are so many people waiting to get justice. The media never shows interest there. One more thing that is beyond me is the fact that Aarushi's murder never qualifies to be a "National News" to be shown day in and day out. We in Delhi have no choice but to hear about it, but what about the rest of India? Shouldnt the media be held accountable for showing us crap most of the time? At the same time as citizens shouldnt we be also ashamed at the fact that we have taken so much liking to such "Breaking News"???

I guess we must ponder over this, as they supply is because of the demand, so we cant fault the channels alone. Something we must ponder over seriously!!

Comments invited

The previous blog - typo corrected - its COFFERS and not coffins!!!!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Heres an interesting one - last week while coming back from Bangalore, i cudnt locate the Bangalore - Hazrat Nizamuddin Rajdhani Express at the Bangalore station. I asked someone and he said its on PF8. Went there, there was some Airtel train standing. I thought what could it be and asked a person whether Rajdhani would come there. He said, this train is the Rajdhani. Yes, the Airtel Rajdhani Express.
Now, other Rajdhani expresses soon would be taken over by the corporates. What an idea for building ur brand (am not too sure Airtel requires it though), anyways soon u wud have the Vodafone Chennai Rajdhani and Reliance Mumbai Rajdhani heard across the country. Once inside, there was a clear change that was visible. The door to the coach read "Welcome Onboard The Airtel Rajdhani". U have pamphlets of the offers available with Airtel in the train. And ads whereever possible in the coach.
The best part was the service. After every hour (its a 34.5 hour journey from Bangalore City to H. Nizamuddin), you get this guy with a slick uniform with Airtel written all over, who cleans the coach to the last dirt. The food is much better than what it used to be.
Railways wont be complaining as their coffins are getting filled up.Neither does Airtel. And for the passenger, its added features in the train at no extra cost. So a win-win situation for everyone.
A thought - How about giving the whole station to a company? Hows this to hear - Welcome to the Airtel New Delhi station???