Thursday, August 27, 2009

If money didn’t matter, which career would I go for?

Teaching would be the career I would have opted for if money didn’t matter. Why teaching? The primary reason would be to learn more. I know this may seem odd. If you have to learn you got to be a student and not a teacher is what you would say to me. However, I strongly disagree with you. Only a good learner can be a great teacher. Also, knowledge is the only wealth that increases when you distribute it.

As a child when anyone would ask me, what I would like to be? I would say, a doctor. However, today if someone would ask me that question, teaching would be my answer. You would be hard-pressed to learn and acquire knowledge in order to impart it. Students will shoot many questions at you. Questions you would not have asked yourself before. A multitude of view points will force you to think deep. One gets a great sense of accomplishment by imparting knowledge.

I am not a great fan of our education system though. Whatever we are learning in schools today, how much of it are we implementing in our lives? Things we learn from books are rarely helping us in our day to day life. Practical side of learning is not emphasized on. Just because a particular book mentions it, it must be true. This is the way that a majority of us think. We have not nurtured the curiosity that we are born with. The curiosity to learn has been dying a silent death. Memorizing answers to questions and writing it down word by word during exams gets you good marks. Once exams are over who cares whether you remember anything of it. We are creating robots and not thinkers. As a teacher this mindset is what I would like to change. Laying emphasis on the practical side of learning and creating thinkers would be my primary aim.

Maybe someday I will end up being a teacher or at least get to play a similar role in whichever field I am.

Monday, August 17, 2009

My Shadow

Seven colors define a rainbow
but black is the color of my shadow
Light keeps it alive
else into darkness it will dive

It keeps changing shape
but it's me that it always tries to ape
As long as there is light
it never goes out of sight

With me it will walk
but never will it talk
Events in life may make me sad
but an indifferent attitude is all it had

Saturday, August 8, 2009

An open letter to the Prime Minister of India


Common Man,

Thane city,


08th, August, 2009


Dr. Manmohan Singh,

The Prime Minister of India,

New Delhi

Subject: Invitation to take a bike ride with me from Thane to Mumbai and back

Respected Prime Minister,

I know you are one of the busiest men in India if not the world. A huge responsibility rests on your shoulder and it is not an easy job heading a nation like India. However, I hope that you will spare five minutes to read this letter of mine. I will try to keep it short and simple. This is to highlight the risk a common man goes through travelling on unsafe roads in India.

I stay in Thane city, neighbouring the financial capital of India, Mumbai. My office is in Hiranandani, Powai. It is close to IIT Powai, one of the premier educational institutes in India. I ride my bike to office and it has become a risky affair these days. I travel on the Eastern Express Highway and then move on to the Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road which passes through Powai. The road is undergoing widening and concretization. This is fine. However, the condition of the existing road is pathetic. There are pot-holes everywhere. In the night, street-lights do not function. This is also the case on the Eastern Express Highway. I do not know whether you understand how risky this is for a bike rider. Rains add to the danger.

So, I invite you to take a bike ride along with me from my residence in Thane to my office in Hiranandani-Powai, Mumbai. I am a safe rider and you can trust me for that. We could start the journey in the evening, spend some time in my office and then in the night we could take a ride back to my home. I have never been to Shanghai but have heard a lot about your dream to convert Mumbai into Shanghai. I am not sure how much of it you have achieved. Since, I have not been to Shanghai I do not understand the condition of the roads out there. Do they also have pot-hole ridden roads and unlit roads? Is that the reason you wanted Mumbai to have them too? What purpose do they serve? Maybe the Chinese government would want its citizens to take up adventure sports. Are you trying to emulate them? If yes, then it concerns me even more. I understand that when a Prime Minister pays visit to any part of the country, the administration there ensures that the road he takes is devoid of pot-holes and all the streetlights function properly. I fear that if they chose to do the same when you decide to accept my invitation of taking a bike ride along with me, then your dream will remain unfulfilled.

It also seems that the World Bank is not aware of your dream to convert Mumbai into Shanghai. Please check the link below:

In the above link it has been mentioned that The World Bank has expressed displeasure over handling of the road widening project on Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road (JVLR). They fail to understand that unsafe roads in India help control the ever growing Indian population. Being an economist, you can explain the effects of over population on the country’s economy. It was foolish of me to have complained at the following website about the condition of the roads in Mumbai:

This is the status of the issue that I reported on the Public grievances portal:

Registration No : DARPG/E/2009/09301
Name : Vijitkumar
Received by : Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances
Forwarded To : Government of Maharashtra
Address : Shri. Sanjay Ubale
: Secretary ( AR and O&M)
: General Admn. Deptt.,
: Mantralaya,
: Mumbai
Date of Action : 15/06/2009

I am sorry to have acted in haste on this. I reported the issue in the month of May 2009 and expected to get it resolved by July 2009. I kept following up with them but never got a reply. I realize it now that India works on a 5 year plan. Maybe I should approach them in May 2014.

Please let me know when you will be able to spare time for the bike ride I suggested. I am eagerly awaiting your reply.

Yours faithfully,