Thursday, February 26, 2009

Across the Sea and Along the Boarders...

Across the sea and along the boarders, India is facing explicit threats from its neighbours. The conditions there in the neighbourhoods do not seem to be promising. With the military rebellion broken out in Bangladesh, the situation has become worse.

The Sri Lankan squall on the LTTE has already become a burning topic, which dishevelled the not-so-quiet Tamil Nadu politics. The linguistic identity, which the subservient population of Sri Lanka tries to establish with India, is the major cause for Indian concern. This identity-claim based on the language Tamil, is a protective-ideological measure taken by the population. The Sri Lankan Tamil population is the migrants from India, centuries ago. What ever the history is, in the present context, it is impossible to accept another group of people, as some one Indian, out side the political boundary of India, only on the basis that they also speak one of our regional languages. We cannot even sympathise with them, on the fact that they were responsible for the murder of one of our former prime ministers, Rajeev Gandhi.


The terrorist face that the LTTE has put on raises our self-security concerns. This situation can attract some neighbourhood ‘intruders’. The military revolt and the incapacity of the Bangladesh government to hold the system, poses a great threat to India. So our precautionary measures should not be limited to military levels. But it should include the common public also. Citizens should be made aware of the situation and the possible threats to the peaceful life in the nation. This would help to tackle the situation more effectively.

The Humanoid

Famish, the deep-laid seed of mortality,
When creeps on the road of stomach,
The New Despotism stands,
Beside a multi national restaurant!
The deep carved eyes looked for them,
With the burden in the stomach,
Crawling, whirling, kicking…
Questions thousand raised,
To the ‘ideologists’, for answer! But-
Busy those self-volunteers were,
In ‘planning, implementing and evaluating’
Their new business dogmas!
Pity rolled down through the metal cheeks of a humanoid
Exhibited in the restaurant. Roared-
He shouted; terror filled the air.
Despotism stood stiffened, stark.
The Humanoid stole bread pieces, thirty!
He fled with the famished.
Famine took the restaurant.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Oscar India...Oscar

On the day of the Oscar awards, India died of happiness but rose in the realization of what otherness it has been bestowed with and by what curious eyes, it has been viewed by the west. The three unparalleled individual talents kissed the Oscar statue. India dampened its eyes. The happiness was that much. It was difficult to hold the pounding heart without the chill of tears poured over it.

Slum Dog Millionaire, the film, which won the best film award and Smile Pinky, the film, which won the best short film award, both are about India. ‘About India’-that phrase is to be underlined. There are question marks on whether they have portrayed India in the way as it really is.

There is a western archetypal curiosity about India and its life, from the European renaissance or even before it. Columbus’s landing on America and many other geographical discoveries also are the after effects of that curiosity. It is that curiosity that we can identify in the Oscar achievements of these Indian films, about Indian life.

This western curiosity as it is evident from the two films, is not rose from the fancy to see the extreme prosperity, but the reversal. It is there, that we still feel of ourselves post-colonial. We are being viewed with that inferior sense, with sympathy. But is the west blamable for their attitude? Is our situation better than what is shown in such films or in novels like “The White Tiger”?

Here, the answers are not necessary, because the concept of ‘answering’ is a pacifying one. Answers are provided to pacify the question maker. They are questions that can evoke the human consciousness and keep it burning. And I don’t want my fellow beings to be passive.

The Hollywood filmmakers will start to choose India as a dream destination for their films. This would become a trend, or have it already? Whether it would be sympathy or curiosity, they would definitely get the necessary things, and along with that, India will rise to a world class ‘show piece’. But if such sympathetic is our real situation, how can we stop them from peeping into our ‘realities’! It is the time for introspection to be self-aware.

Let them make what ever the west want. If the world wants to see us wearing the hyphenated identity, let us be called the post-colonials. As A.R. Rahman said a few days back, we have a lot to give to the world. If the west wants us to play the role of the post-colonials, let us play it and play it in a way that we can grab all their attention, prizes and the precious. This is the way to conquer the world. It is in this place that Rahman and Rasool Pookutty becomes the real heroes of modern India. Also, Danny Boyle and his crew deserved the very best of the results. Their individual talents cannot be undermined at any context. And the Oscar goes for that.

Problems Faced by the Post-Colonial Consumers

Introduction.

There is no one that can be called consumer in the truest sense. ‘Consumer’ is the result of the process of marketing. The identity of the consumer is an ambivalent one, because the consumer is the holder of money or the possession, which when he transfers to the market, it becomes the ‘investment’ for the market and a facility to satisfy his needs. The need of the persons provides the space for the establishment of the market. The market labels the individual as a consumer. These semantic identities act as an interlinked chain and are transferred through the market.

Not only linguistic labeling, but many other discourses also can be seen transmitted through market, especially after the globalization. They are:

1.Adulteration

The action of adulterating, being mixed with extraneous material, illicit substitution of one substance for another is known as adulteration. It becomes more embarrassingly conspicuous in the third world post-colonial countries. Not only the indigenous grocers, but also the indigenous establishments of the multinational producers, involve in adulteration for the increase of their profits. Thus the third world nations are forced to strive through one of the most dangerous practices of the market, for such activities can result in very serious health problems. The consumers of these nations are mostly uneducated and this lower literacy levels result in the unknowing subservience to this vice.

2.Under weighing and under measurement.

The under weighing and under measurement of the commodities sold, causes considerable loss in the side of the consumer and it in turn enlarges the number of negative practices of the market as an institution. Illiteracy can be point out as a cause for the succumbing of customers to this act of cheating. An ordinary Indian middle class well-educated consumer can be seen undergoing such experiences daily. So we can’t blame illiteracy alone for the problem. Through different ‘modern ways’, the cheating process is in its long run!

3.High prices.

Another major problem, which a developing third world nation like India suffers, is the lack of quality of the products sold here. If the consumer wants good quality products, he or she has to pay a high amount of money for that. Even after that there is no guarantee for the quality of the product. Recently the global economic crisis also has made the Indian markets to boom up their values. So the middle class and lover middle class consumers of India are in the hot pan.

4.Hoarding

Through the act of hoarding, the grocer hides his goods from sale when they are doing business in low prices, and sells after the market has risen to hot prices. This is a curse rather than a customer related issue. In India in particular, from ration dealers to multinational establishments, all hide the profit from consumer and squeeze the customers to increase their own profits. This can be seen as a part of the neo-colonialism. Each grocer acting as a self-ascertaining entity, exercises their own value systems and norms, which the consumer has to adjust with, for the cause of survival.

Image Courtesy: Google

5.Selling sub-standard goods to consumers.

Quality, as mentioned earlier is a very important concern for its lack in the Indian markets. The recent controversies related with the health care sector are enough to shock our conscious mind. The medicines, which are sold in the Indian markets are prohibited or the second quality products, from the foreign countries. In this scenario we have no other choice, other than “risking our lives to avoid death”. Not only the health sector, but the other areas of every day life also are affected by this crisis. Indian markets are flooded with such commodities, which are low in quality. But this is not the real plight. The real issue is that a common Indian is forced to consume all these low quality products, for he or she has no other choice. Most of us are unaware of the lack of quality of the product that we consume. Thus goes the adversity.

6.False and duplicate items sold.

This is another plight of the Indian consumer. In this age of high technology along with the convenience, it has given the generation the curse of unidentifiable duplicates. Our markets are flooded with such low vale duplicates with the same looks as the original, which occasionally fool the consumer. Thus the money that he pays will be lost in the low quality duplicates.

7.Selling goods, which have reached expiry date.
This issue has to be tackled seriously because this affects mostly in the medicinal sector. The medicines that have crossed the expiry date can cause even the death of the patient. The ignorance of the consumer is the main cause of this issue. Even though the government has taken measures to aware people about this fact, those measures have not reached their destination.

8.False or incomplete information.Through giving false or incomplete information the companies usually cheat the consumers. This has been a regular practice in the contemporary market. Unless the consumer gets the awareness about this no one can save him. Often it is seen that people fall into colorful ads and appearances of the products, and cheated.

9.Skipping away from the offers promised.

This is another issue, which usually comes into light. As a part of the new sale techniques, offers are abundantly provided. But only a few among them are fulfilled. The consumers fall into such practices for their greed, but later find it a trap. It is such psychological instincts that are utilized by the market.

10.Rough behaviour from the shopkeepers.

An issue of serious concern but less cared about. The consumers pay the money for getting adequate service from the market. But rude and impolite behaviors from the shopkeepers make the scene really worse.

11.Poor or inadequate after sale service.

This is also a matter of not keeping the consumers faith. The after sale services offered are usually not satisfied. There are no such provisions in our law system, known to the common people, through which they can get justice.

12.Globalization and neo-colonialism.

The ways through which neo-colonialism and globalization affect the consumers are various. The world has become a village and every good and bad product flows through it to the ordinary man. He is the one to choose. His discrimination capacity plays a vital roll in guarding his favors in this market chain.

Image Courtesy: Google
Conclusion.
All these discussions point towards our post-colonial identity. The market, which the West had established here, during the post independent era by no means, was suited for our needs and comforts. But after independence our productive system failed to replace the western products with indigenous alternatives. At present, as the world itself has reduced its ‘size’ the crisis becomes more important and needs immediate attention. The deliberate interference of the government, as a control over the market, only can resolve the crisis faced by the Indian consumer.

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Writers

"Who is a writer?” - Some one asked.
“The one who knows what to write?” – I reflected. Then the other person said;
“No, the one who knows that who is not a writer, is a writer. For he then learns, what to write; and how!”


What ever may be the criteria to define a writer, each one of us has definitely tried writing at least once in our life.

Writing, as Paulo Coelho says, is the expression of one's own soul.

Sometimes it might be the intuitions of an author that is manifested through his or her writings. But when a reader approaches a written or printed piece of writing, the probable intuition with which the writer had given the expressions, would become-- a fact, a truth, a prophesy, and, a living and pulsating piece of life.

I am hinting on that moment when the reader enters into the complex network of symbols and associations on the writer’s behalf and becomes astonished and shocked on seeing those inexplicable scenes of imagination and reality intervened.

I am hinting on a rise in the adrenalin levels of the reader, in that moment, when that one becomes conscious about the unconscious intrusion of the text into the boarders of his constructed privacy to the society.

Here some intuitions change their form “magically”.
I am hinting on that magic.



How does it happen? From where; the socio-political, cultural and other influences or intuitions change into that fantastic relation of words and ideas? No one knows the correct place to locate the answer. And thus the magic behind the process of writing still prevails unknown and still writers move their pens to take our souls to inflect them with the uncouth magic.


One of the most significant developments in the area of software’s is -‘Blog’. A place; where you can find such magic happening in ample. The boundaries for writing that had existed before, has been erased after the development of Blogs. The peculiarity, which separates any other medium for writing from Blogs is its freedom for self expression. Any one can write Blogs and that too free of coast. A web space called “Blogspot” offers the space for blogging. You just need to enter into the web site and hit the curser on the ‘create blog’ option. Following the instructions provided, will lead you to become a ‘blog owner’. You can write about anything and every thing. Readers from any part of the world can be able to read your blog.

Though it sounds simple it caries a very serious space for expressing the known and unknown links of the human being with his or her society. Thus, ‘virtually’ it establishes and asserts the identity of the individual as every book does with the person, who wrote it, manifesting his intuitions through it, into different "magical" forms.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Love Story.

Image Courtesy: Google
How does it matter to you when someone is falling in love, in some obscure part of the earth? In no way it matters. But suppose if that person is somebody whom you know, then?

You might have read many love stories and heard that all the love stories are the same. Let me tell you that it is wrong. The course of love, the happenings in the lives and hearts of two individuals, in the most fantastic and mysterious sort, can never be written as a story. For in love, hearts spill tears and eyes fill with blood. And this is no story. This is reality. And any one, like reading a story, can’t understand this. Those can only understand this, who has felt it at least once…

True that some way, in love, the whole world seems to be beautiful. But in reading a story, you will only be preoccupied in the pages, and the world around you seems to be ignored. So love is not a story, ever…

I don’t know how to answer these questions like when, how and why I got acquainted with her sight, only with her sight, remember. But I can recollect where I first saw her--in the bus…

I will continue, but later.
Go and make your valentines day, a day of real love.
Wishes...

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

On a Crying Child

Cry child cry. Let them know you,
For it only will open the deaf ears of Monitory Despotism.
Prince of filthy street
Let your throat cry loud.
Shiver the stars make the cloud to shower.
Your tears might tempt
To write a poem that can catch -
Those, who reads for an aesthetic pleasure.
Be a model for the artists
To portray the un-kept and also for us
Be a model to be exhibited in
The new plan, for poverty eradication,
As, a ‘courtier of poverty’!
Who in the world else; know
You are the prince, not a courtier
Un-kept, unwanted;
Other than your deserted stomach dried throat and tearless eyes!

Cry child cry…
For the crying-one only gets loaves…

Monday, February 2, 2009

The Nature Discourse

Woman got one of her finest attributes from the male dominant literary scenario, as ‘Nature’. The feminine face of nature and the female identity as nature both have its long history, though the later image remains controversial.

What would be that peculiarity or peculiarities of nature that prompted the poets of endless facility for imagination to proclaim it with the pronoun for feminine gender? A scrutiny seems to be relevant in an event where the nature seems to be engulfed more with deserts than with rain forests and where existence becomes the cause for destruction. For existence of human beings or any other living creatures, they need a habitat, which must be suitable for the comfortable life of them. The point, which turns the contemporary ‘marketism’ into a silly butt of joke, is that nature itself is providing the habitat for humans and all other living beings. For the existence of “some”, they are destroying the nature, which is actually their habitat. Here, those “some” are no doubt, we-Humans!

The evolution gave human brain the facility of instrumental intelligence. That means, the intelligence to make instruments and theories for the mechanical functioning of the more natural human life. Instrumentation has its own page of plus marks in the history of evolution. But, somehow, man forgot to re-install the once used wealth of nature, as much as possible by him-like trees. The identity given to the centre of action is ‘man’, for he ruled the world until the phallus centered ideologies swerved a little and allowed the green light of feminism to peep through it. (No metaphor intended).

The present scenario can be marked by the presence of some very special though occasional introspection, which concerns themselves with the nature and their environment. Some governmental and non governmental organizations, some individuals and some movements can be perceived interfering in the space of conflict, which the man himself has initiated, between the nature and man. But such efforts for interferences are sporadic and fragile. But, no sedition can give better results for the present devastation of nature. Stopping an assault with a counter assault is, in fact, one of the methods of early forefathers, who sit in the early rows of human evolution.

As we all boast of our earned and inherited organic components of civilization, like, humanity, kindness, etc, we have to use some creative methods to promote the awareness of the necessity for safeguarding nature. Trees, butterflies, and flowers only do not constitute nature. They indeed act as a furbished, created mode of confining the identity of nature into something outside us, for the easy and unhindered exploitation of the former, forgetting the fact that we are also a part of it. This marks the contemporary blind exploitation of nature, which is suicidal.

Why does this continue even after a number of interferences made into this conflict? This question points to the former un-answered question for its own answers- why nature has been attributed with feminine qualities? The reason may not be only the reproductive capacity. There is not a reason but there are many reasons. The victory which men seems to have attained over nature is similar to that over womanhood. The exploitation of natural resources, as if they are profit-making machines, is similar to his concept of woman as ‘descendant giving’ machines. Thus with a wide range of views, we can perceive the answer for the question.

One thing seems to me is that nature is definitely a woman; a woman who is capable of becoming a mother. But what she would produce will be decided by the one from whom she got conceived. If she is conceived from ‘Hatred’, she will give birth to hatred, and if she is conceived from ‘Compassion’, she will bear the child of compassion. So let us be the embryos of compassion and take birth as nature’s compassionate, lovable children. Then would only be, we called as humans in the truest sense.
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