Tuesday, August 28, 2012

If Gods Can Love, Ask and Wed, Why should Humans Fret?

The frail hands of the lady in her 80s rested on Vinay's shoulder, like a canopy saving a lost survivor from getting washed by the high tides. Her hand felt warm and friendly, so Vinay did not resist. In fact, after all the chaos in the family, he was desperate for some warmth. The lady seemed more welcoming than his mother at lest, who had simply gone against his wishes to comply with his father. To her, her duty as a wife came foremost than her being a mother to Vinay. He felt tired, heart-broken and lost, which of course he could not show to Meera, who was puzzled by this instant connection between Vinay and the elderly woman. 

They were sitting under the shade of a Banyan tree next to the main temple, under which other travelers and beggars were resting. The lady spoke further, “Meera why don’t you come closer to me and sit here along with Vinay. Don’t worry, I am just an old frail woman, what harm can I do? You look like you wouldn’t mind some calming words coming out from a stranger, would you?” and she ended with a smile. Meera smiled back and moved closer to them. The lady began.

You can call me Amma. My name isn’t of much importance. But what I do believe is that there is a purpose for everything that happens in life. Me, being abandoned by my kids.. You two kids falling in love but getting refused by your family.. You running away from home. And you coming to this very temple and you sitting right here in front of me.. Every single act has a purpose, beta. Let me tell you a story after which you can proceed to go and marry. I hope you won’t mind sparing this little time for your Amma?

The same radiant smile flashed on Amma’s face and Vinay and Meera looked convinced. Meera twitched thinking of delaying their marriage any further, because her parents would soon find out that she has eloped and would come searching for them. However, she was too much grasped by Amma’s conversation to back out now.

I will tell you about Shiva and Parvati’s marriage today, which is important for all couples, wedded or otherwise to know of. Shiva is a god, that we all know but Parvati was born into the Himalayan king’s family. She worshipped and propitiated till she was visited by Lord Shiva who granted her a wish. She was in devotional love with him and thus, all she asked for was Him. He accepted, jus then Parvati cringed her brows. He asked her what the matter was, to which she replied that she wanted to marry Shiva with her parents’ acceptance. But Shiva was known for his isolated existence in the forests and icy mountains of the Himalayas. No parent in their right sense would offer their well-raised beautiful and intelligent daughter’s hand to a forest dweller. So she asked him to come to her parents and ask her hand for marriage from them. And further convince them with his intelligence, wisdom and grace to accept him as their son-in-law. Also that only after her parents had agreed to marriage, that she would marry him and the marriage would be done with all rituals in order. Shiva agreed to the terms and soon went to her parents and asked Parvati’s hand for marriage. And then they were soon married and their marriage is still considered to be the most perfect form of marriage that sadhus even today give example of.

Amma took her spectacles off from her face and wiped her moist eyes. Vinay and Meera held hands as they watched intently at her. She finally looked at them and a sad smile appeared on her face.
You are grown ups, but still young. You soon shall marry and lead a wedded life together, have kids. You shall spend not just your investments but all your hopes, privileges and love on them. One fine day, they make you realize they are grown up now, and thus you may not be a part of their decision making, and yet hope that you still will be.

My son is a hard-working man who really loves his family. But he has grown up so much that he feels I am breaking his family apart. He has a nice wife, whom he chose for himself who was a beautiful girl he had met in college. What he did not realize is that love isn’t just about love for one person. It is about how you learn to love higher, how it becomes more pristine. Love after a point is not about a person or persons but rather about you.
You kids have eloped, but did you ever think why your parents did not agree to your marriage in the first place? It was because they are afraid, that you are hurrying into this. That you might end up making the wrong choice, as beauty of the skin is relative but one needs to have a sense of maturity to see the inner beauty.
I do not wish to say that you are wrong. I see how much you love each other and Meera I know for certain that you and Vinay will make a wonderful couple. But beta, you must not abandon your parents. Love between the partners and acceptance in the family are two very essential components of a successful marriage. One is incomplete without the other, like two wheels of a cart. You are all they have, beta.

With that said, she removed her hand from Vinay’s head and got up to wear her slippers. Vinay and Meera got up and bent down to take her blessings. She hugged them and gave them her blessings. Amma called out to the pandit,

Pandit ji, they want to get married today. Please can you help them with the needful?

Vinay held Amma’s hand in one and Meera’s hand in the other and smiled.

Wait Panditjee, we need to go get our parents and then only can we marry. Amma, you will join us for the ceremony right?

Amma’s smile broadened as she saw the two, going hand in hand, towards their homes, and she looked at the setting sun and hoped her son would come back too.

This post has been written for the contest, Love Marriage ya Arranged Marriage for Indiblogger. If you are on Indiblogger, then do like my post HERE.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Let HER story be written as well!

And I won! :D

This post is a part of the weekend blogging contest at BlogAdda.com in association with 18again.com

We often have a wonderfully orchestrated system that we live in, or rather pretend to be living in, that we call Society- a place that circumscribes you into the person that you are ought to be. It is this moral obligation that one has to follow as well as transmit, from one generation to the other. We often gimmick a hue and cry about how we are losing pace with our culture, traditions and morality, due to the whole flux of globalisation liberalisation and privatisation.

These repertoires have been used, abused and misused by the politicians, the media and even by us, to place ourselves in a higher level of sophistication or to simply justify what we otherwise know is morally unjustifiable. Be it any period of history, women have always been overtly presented as this epitome of all the fancies of this worldly delight..And, and yet!She is the most ignored of all when it comes to Her! What is a woman really, without a man or a family in her life?

No I won't talk in abstract today. What I want to talk about is Women's sexuality. A girl before her puberty, is conditioned to be playing with a doll, helping her mother in placing plates for the family or learning dance to show to the guests when they come. A boy is told that he has to grow strong and plays with cars, guns, video games.
When they reach puberty, girls are taught to be docile and not speak much while a guy is taught to vocal. Also, menstruation is a baggage that most girls carry with a heavy heart, because it is not just painful but very very emotionally distressing. Instead of helping her deal with it, the society designs a number of norms for her- don't talk much, don't watch porn, don't hang around, bleh bleh bleh.

When they grow up, thanks to our brilliant sense of education system, both the girl and the boy know what is meant by the terms "reproduction", "sex", "genitals", "sperms" and so on. But what they do not teach is hygiene.Not to forget the mechanical way in which the sexual conduct is depicted.The beautiful and touching language of English also fails to bring about the necessary feelings for it. And then men are blamed to not really think of sex as a stimulating act..while women are to only shy away from such topics and to think about it, is nothing more than a guilty trip.
I know you consider this to be utter crap, but these are things I have observed even now. Tonight we were to watch Dirty Picture together. And I do not think I could present a more apt example for this one. I was sitting with my sister, watching Tv. And were soon joined by our mother and maternal grandmum(nani). Well it started off nicely, we munching on bhujia and popcorn, but after ten minutes, the scenes and dialogues were just way too provocative. I grew stiff, with my eyes darting from my sister who was pretending to be closing her eyes, but was watching it, thinking she was bluffing me, while on the other hand, I could sense a tension between mum and nani. Nani was moving in her seat, uncomfortably, while my mum started fiddling with her phone.
Here we are..four generations in the matriarchal order, of differing ages, sensibilities and culture. But what was common in between was the awkwardness. Did they not have sex i.e. my nani or mum? They did. Haven't I heard about sex? Yes I have..And though my little sis is only 10yrs old, doesn't she know even if mildly, how "dirty" was Dirty Picture????

We shut the Tv after about 30 minutes,all of us were sweating and our brows were crooked by the end and the tension was unbearable! That reminds me of the whisper ads, Kamasutra condoms, and the Axe deodorant ads! Oh man! Always shows how women are always sexually stimulating the men's world, but what happens to the Aam Bharitya nari?
Who can ever forget the Amul Macho Ad! I think it was a hell of an ad!! At least for me, it paved way for the sexual fantasies that women have, and Boy! did I see my maid twinge in shame every time she saw it!

We are not supposed to discuss about our menstruation, not about our sexual fantasies, interests and the hots we have for our Bollywood actors or the college hunk. But then, be the perfect hosts to our dear husbands once we are married to the man of our dreams!
We are taught by our mothers to be loving caring and all that jazz, but then what about being sexy? What about orgasms? What about how to use our sanitary napkins? what about discussing our favorite sexual positions (which would be possible only after one knows them!) and sexual fantasies?

A man in the so called 21st century India can have sex with women and then find love in her, but the woman if she does the same is called to be a whore or a slut (whichever sounds more fancier)! A woman when shouts or acts rowdy, she is said to be facing PMS or Pre Menstrual Syndrome. If a woman talks about the empowerment of a woman, she is termed to be a Feminist, while a man is only a Man. His actions can be justified, but not that of a woman..And no, it isn't the story about a woman and man of the 21st Century my friends. This is an idea that started with the very inception of Man- with Adam and Eve. Eve was the carnal one..she could not resist..

The woman is a Goddess, A Dharmapatni, alright. If she isn't taken care of, how will the family thrive? To take care isn't to load her with gifts, but with affection. To know when she is menstruating..to help her with her work and her emotions alike. To know what pleases her sexually and otherwise..
If she is the tune to which the birds sing along and play in your garden, then let her voice be heard. Not just what you wish to be heard, but her views. Let her FEEL. Be it sex or love. Anger or Lust. Greed or Tears. Let her, please let her be Human instead!

This is one such perfect example of what I mean! Start TALKING! PLEASE!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Are.Were.Will Be..

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I told him he wasn't a part of my life. But he was.

That he didn't matter and wasn't my problem. And yet he continued to be so.

When he had me, he used me. When he didn't, he craved for me.

I was like the most prized possession and yet a thing, but a thing?

Some say, I made him the man he is. But it has been a while I went away.

Why would he be this way, when I am only but a memory to him, or not 
even that?

He got into love of a new kind, I never let him back, even as a friend.

There was too much to not speak of, not hear, not feel in between.

I am asked, sometimes with angry eyes of friends mutual or exclusive,

Do I still miss him? Does he still cross my mind?

Of course he does, I did love him once and love never dies.

Unless it is throttled done, but which still survives.

I am listening to his voice tonight, crackling in between as he sips his scotch.

The telephone slips from my hand, the effort to hold on is too prune for our minds.

I still wait in earnest hope, to hear the voice of a gentle boy I once knew

But what I hear are the cries of a man, who built himself up and got wasted too soon.

Monday, August 20, 2012



ISBN: 978817234009
PAGES: 231
PRICE: Rs.150
MY RATINGS: 3.5 out of 5

Seldom does it happen that you find books that entice you to read, in appearance itself. People talk about how it is the content that finally attracts a reader to a book, but come to think of it.. The look does market the product that lies within. Priyadarshini Narendra’s “You Never Know When You’ll Get Lucky!” has a fantastic cover page and I can say so, because I have read the book and the cover and the content beautifully complement each other.
The things that I thought were quite unique in this book were:

The Cover Page
A white background is the perfect base to instill catchy symbols and metaphors for the 70,000+ words that embroider the inner pages. Inverted architectural symbols such as the Qutub Minar represents Delhi while the Gateway of India represents Mumbai, with a pair of sexy long waxed legs wearing red stilettos represents a story set in the 21st Century, about a woman who is independent, glamorous who during the course of the story, shuttles between Delhi and Mumbai, and also moving back and forth between where her mind lies and where her heart lies..(The hearts are shown as bubbles moving around.)

Of course, the review of Durjoy Datta cannot go unnoticed, who describes the book as “Unputdownable and hilarious!” Imagine, a bestseller author, describing the book with an adjective, that hasn’t yet been created, simply because it rightly is a book, you cannot stop reading only halfway!

Also, every page number had a symbol next to it, a heart with a thread zig-zagged scrolled below it. These little things simply show how much effort an author and the publisher has put in, to attach sentiments and symbolism into this book.

The most striking bit for me was the absence of an acknowledgement page. I being part of the fraternity know exactly how difficult it is for someone to sell their manuscript to a publisher who wouldn’t treat it like any other piece but like a new born, that needs special concern and affection. That does involve a long list of people- family and friends to begin with but later on, agents, publishers, fellow authors, people attached to the marketing and PR…and the list can go on and on.
I do love reading the acknowledgement section in the books I review- they help me connect to the author’s sentiments about the coming up of the book.

Now talking of the book as per its content, No, I won’t say that it has the most unique plot ever. It is a simple story, talking of a lady named Kajal who works in an advertising company, who is more interested in getting her a promotion rather than getting into a relationship or even marriage- that her mother is driving her to do, to a childhood friend that Kajal isn’t exactly fond of. Kajal is in the course of getting a promotion after she bags a prized campaign on Condoms when she meets Sudhir- a guy in front of whom she had earlier embarrassed herself, but she found a connection that was hard to let go of. Events occur such that she spends considerable time with him and they fall in love in Mumbai. But she needs to go back to Delhi where she lives and works. Torn in between work and love, whom does she choose, considering even Sudhir cannot shift to Delhi.

There are other characters that add to the plot, Kajal’s neighbor who becomes a good friend after she realizes that he isn’t as bad as she thought of him; her temporary boyfriend who is a hypocrite-being all modern on one hand, but acting all conservative and orthodox in front of his parents; her boss who keeps tugging at her to work for the campaign on condoms, for her promotion and many more characters that silently play their roles to enrich the plot and bring the characters close.

Priyadarshini touches upon a variety of themes in this story- life of a 21st C woman, how she looks at love, marriage and thus, life. Also, Gays and how they are pressurized to get married to women, due to the fear of embarrassment they and their families would be ascertained to.
The book feels so real, as if we have at some points, in bits and phases lived and reacted just how Kajal or Sudhir have. I could recollect reading Nikita Singh’s style of writing in it, though Priya actually manages to notch a level or two higher in terms of handling emotions of intimacy, love and desperation in a perfect blend.
All in all, a great ride of emotions. And trust me, you may get lucky, but if you do not work for it, nothing stays. Not work, not love and certainly not life!

Buy it here at a discounted rate 

Get in touch with the author here: https://www.facebook.com/fingerprintpublishing

Tuesday, August 14, 2012




Poetry is said to be a sign of progress; a sense of belongingness is said to have been achieved through poetry- something that is seldom achieved through any other mediums. The title of the book, Quest For Freedom, is in itself a self-explanatory expression for the wings that poetry instills onto oneself. As one scrolls through the pages of the book, the message of it gets sharper and clearer- Bring Freedom onto Expression. You must be wondering, freedom into expression-isn’t expressing all about freedom? Well technically yes, but then thanks to the art of flattery or that of getting our “15 seconds of fame” we tend to get biased, unruly and almost unethical. In contrast to this, Dr.Saha manages to skin out a structure of poems that call a spade: a spade.

The collection of poems surround around various themes that Dr.Saha has beautifully structured, making it look neat and composed unlike many others that seem random and out of structure. These themes are, namely Eluding Justice- that deals with the concept of a nation- our nation, India, peoples living in and around and furthermore, their characteristics in terms of their traits, their virtues and vices and concepts of patience, endurance and hypocrisy and an extremely significant attributes that have shaped our nation such as slavery and freedom. Further, he talks of the second theme of Life and Death where he questions concepts of what is Life and then what is Death- what are their consequences and effects, what happens after death happens and also what role destiny plays in the two scenarios. The third theme talks of a concept too much spoken of- Love. Love not like the ones our novels talk of but the kind of love this book talks of is tranquil and almost hypnotic with a reverence to love as God’s gift to us. He further explores love for parents, siblings, children and partners. The forth deals with a phrase- Longing for realization- which explores into dreams, success, fantasies, visions and their contradictions with destiny, fiction, failure and intrigue. The poems within this facet are my personal favorite from the entire lot with complexities of spirituality, dreams and realities are very eloquently tackled. The last but certainly the best theme is Enlightenment, a topic that intrigues me to no ends. It deals with illusions of the mind, one’s existence and purpose-his deeds, Salvation and his relation with Knowledge and also his past, present and future.

All in all, it is a book that encompasses themes that our humanly existence revolves around and the language, tone and simplicity with which Dr.Saha has dealt with the themes, moves the poet in me. The only thing that I felt is missing, was the usual foreword and the acknowledgements sections. I am one of those crazy readers who actually read “from cover to cover” and thus, I found it quite surprising when I found that absent. However, I also would add that these are trivial matters that rests solely upon an author to either pursue or not. Though the Quest for Freedom seems to find its shape, the quench for it still continues to seethe. Hopefully, the freedom shall dawn soon. Also, I felt that the language could be nuanced further, which would bring out the beauty of the poems even more.

Available at 

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Never Treaded That Path Again!

I was lying, screaming
Baba, Baba! Take me back!
As he left, never looking back
and seemed like a shadow against the mist that rose
on a cold January morning
as my limbs threatened to freeze.
Ma, please take me back
and pull me close to your breasts
as I feel the warmth, the familiar touch
I try but I cannot move
and he is lost in between the dawn and the dusk.
I continue to lay, as dogs put their nose against my belly
and leave me unturned, unattended
the cold now numbing my insides too.
I try, but I cannot walk
I scream but no one hears
I try but no one pays heed
I lose hope, as flows every single minute.

I look at the passer bys
how they hear my cries,
and yet after a look of pity
leave my side.
I slowly stop my seething voice
to a running hiss, as blood begins
to ooze from my left crippled leg,
from the dog bite.

And then you came
a man with two dark eyes
that were impossible to explore,
which spoke of his turmoil.
He picked me up
and cleaned my wound
and wrapped me up with his rags

He saw my leg and a tear fell
his beard glistening with sweat
as he placed me on his shoulder
and I tired, rested my head
on his ragged but warm hair.
And since then,
I and my polio leg have never 
treaded that path again!

This little boy was abandoned by his parents because he was Polio-infected. Even with the intense awareness programs initiated by the government, thousands of parents choose to ignore to give their infants the polio-drops.Through the Write-up Cafe contest, I wish to delve into this awareness drive.

This post is part of the contest A picture can say a thousand words.. on WriteUpCafe.com

Control "C" Control "V"-- CONTROL PLEASE?

I had planned the 401st post to be quite enticing and my dear friends what I bring to you today is something that is quite integral into the lives of us bloggers. I am speaking of the word PLAGIARISM- a word that can shake the hoots out of our system.

He was a nerd.
I was a spoiled brat.
He loved the computer lab.
I loved the auditorium.
He helped me study.
I helped him unlearn.
He began to smile.
I began to get noticed in lectures.
The balance seemed heavenly.
and soon the college days threatened.

to get over.
So did our love.
And yet years passed by.
like autumn leaves blowing past.
our faces as we kissed and made up.
after every fight.
And even know as I write this.
I see his glistening eyes.
And I know he loves me.
more, with every passing day.

Recently, Facebook has become the most common platform for such "thefts". Two days back, one of my poems was stolen from my Fb profile and posted on a Fb page. I had posted my poem for a contest and I received a comment there that  said "You have stolen this poem from


It has been two days that I along with almost 20 of my friends have reported Scam on the post and also commented on the post, but neither has Fb nor has the owner removed the poem. Simply makes me fear God knows how many poems must have been used without my knowledge!

Also recently, thanks to the immensely dense network that I have amongst Indian authors and publishers, I got to know a certain lady, who claims to be a universally-recognised author, who features in the TIME magazine's list of the 100 most influential people (no, the self-eulogisation does not stop there!)..She also states to be co-authoring with Chetan Bhagat.

This woman has been stealing people's statuses, and even their Bio-s from their websites! When the author whose bio she had lifted was contacted, she replied saying that it is unfortunate and that she would change her bio. But the point remains, we are letting this woman go Scot-free!
Just when I thought she has learnt her lesson, this is what I find. 

Please read the article below first- If you don't have the time to, don't worry simply browse through it, noticing the beginning and the end.


Now that you have, ladies and gentlemen, please have a look at this! And get ready to be amused!

The heights of Plagiarism! A plagiarist at least takes the effort to change the title! Or parts of the body! But this woman is just too High for her heels! She is just an example my friends. But the point remains, why copy paste at all? Why take the credit for writing something when it isn't yours? The least one can do is give credit to the author! Friends we tend to do this at every stage- some words are really impressive and we want the world to read them. Go ahead and CLICK THE SHARE BUTTON!
Please. Do your bit to stop Plagiarism. Write your own stuff, to begin with.