Where are the Journo’s heading?

If there was something that was little credible in India – it was the media. We common men and women, were exposed to the corrupt policies of the politicians and the immoral practices through the media – which we trusted, followed and revered to a great extent. Much credit should go to the erstwhile Indian Expresses and Deccan Heralds and The Hindu’s for having made us develop this follower-ship. Now, in the days of Page 3 over the rest, media seems to have really lost its credibility. Instances, many! One my most trusted journalists and whom I revered for all that she has covered in her career Barkha Dutt (Twitter handle @bdutt) has literally let her fan following down! The Open Magazine has brought her down and her conversations with Nira Radia, well has really got her to lose her established base and credibility. She has been one of the few who apparently had criticized blogs and online media long ago, looks like that has come back to haunt her! So has been the impact that I am trying to voice down my opinions of getting the live streaming open on campus at Great Lakes!

Now coming to the part of why I am losing trust in the media:

1. Barkha Dutt in case she had got a report or a conversation like her, would have vehemently come down on whoever was being exposed ensuring an end to the spectrum of his public survival! And now, none of the news channels including Times Now or CNN IBN have not even covered the incident. I think, I even saw a tweet from Rajdeep covering it up – something like Barkha’s achievements are much more than this minor hiccup. That probably is Barkha and Vir Sanghvi’s story, yellow journalism to the core and I think that probably even erodes the fan base that NDTV had got a little bit! We the People – yeah, I don’t really know if I will watch the show any more!

2. Next one comes closer home! In Bengaluru, apparently mediapersons have been caught in the muck with allocations of G Category sites. Have they been caught pants down? – May be yes, Churumuri says so – http://churumuri.wordpress.com/2010/11/27/bangalore-journos-named-in-site-allotment-scam/

With such conflicts of interests, I am thinking is it right on one person to achieve a goal by unethical and immoral practices, even if it is for the collective good of the nation. Barkha may have helped in one way to get A Raja installed. Raja also somewhere argued that the prices are low because of the giveaways during the auction! Huh! Yeah I think that is one of the reasons why there may be more mobiles than underwears in India.

I am sitting through Mr. N Vittal, former Chief Vigilance Commissioner’s classes here at Great Lakes. At the right time, when he talks about corruption in businesses and moral and ethical values, the newspapers seem to be flooded with scams after scams after scams! Good time spent in the business ethics class, which I otherwise was feeling was a recap of the newspapers of the 90’s and early oo’s. As I end this post, I still ponder, weather media houses stick to morality and ethics while delivering the news to the viewers and is it a necessity for them to do so? Debatable, isn’t it?

 

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Pottered and Battered!

Well, this Sunday was truly a Potter evening! After the meeting with Mr. Sridhar, I headed for The Grand Sigma Mall, which is not so grand on Cunningham Road, and yes thanks to Dhana and Reshma, we had the ticket to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part I. An amazing movie, and I recall, that it is one of the two or three Harry Potter movies that actually brings back the aura of the book on the screen. Daniel Radcliffe at his best, probably mature acting with age and Emma Watson at super best!

Sad, that I could not watch the movie in 3-D, felt that some scenes like the snake – ‘Nagini’ gobbling up one of the Hogwart’s staff, would have been an amazing treat to watch in 3-D. The movie was kind of a word-to-word replica of the book unlike the other versions, and well the fight between Ron, Hermione and Harry has been really pictured very well.

Another plus for the movie is the locales, the Scottish highlands have been amazing. Recall my five day trip to that place and probably for a moment felt like going back there! The darkness is equally personified as well in the movie as Harry learns about the Deathly Hallows – the wand, the cloak and the pumice stone. Somehow, cannot wait for the last part of the series to be released and add it to my collection of modern day classics! As Harry Potter ends, now, I think I look forward to the next version of Narnia, soon.

But, all was not well, as I headed back to Manamai after meeting Thyagi and Rekha, got battered black and blue by the SETC bus run by the Tamil Nadu State Corp. Well, if that was just it, it would have been okay! Was bitten by a thousand bed bugs in the bus! I hope the transport corp. does understand that there is something called ‘customer service’ and ‘de-moth-er’. Almost took a vow not to travel in the SETC bus again, except for the reason that it drops very close by to my campus and is damn cheap.- KSRTC, I missed you today 😦

And yes, the sickness generated by the SETC travel, was nullified by the walk in the emptiness from Vengambakkam to the campus, in pitch dark conditions! Amazing… Was just left wondering – Hope I had a Wand 🙂

Sense and NonSense

Back to movie reviews – Just one line on Golmaal 3 – Its crap and utter nonsense if you see it!

Btw I am in the Bangalore Area (as Linked In calls it), was here to meet Mr. Sridhar Lolla, the amazing mentor that LIBA, Chennai have assigned us for their Espire event. He has been an amazing mentor all along and his inputs have been crucial in formulating our plan as well as vital to build upon further. Tomorrow, we have the final meeting with him, over lunch. Dunno where, but definitely somewhere in JP Nagar/ BSK side. Then on, I will be free, and will return back to my life in the Great Lakes campus.

Past two days have been tiring and entertaining as well. With Espire final rounds coming up (though we have not publicized of having got in there, except seeking help form our beloved Profs. and industry mentors), sort of it has pushed a lazy person like me, to move around and get things going as well. Over the weekend, apart form the meeting with Mr. Lolla, we have prepared, the FE’s, got promotional material printed (including phamplets) for our service, created videos for promos (thanks to iMovies)! and of course, Siva and Shruti starting the buzz on Social Media to get it moving further. Have been looking like a clown preparing presentations/ documents for submissions in Cafe Shops, buses and trains over the past two days!

In between my submissions and Bangalore, I decided to hop into Mysore as well (yeah my mom calls it hop-in as I never seem to stay for more than 10 hours in my own house!), visited an ailing uncle, visited all the oldies, visited my Engineering prof. and congratulated him on his Doctoral thesis getting approved, visited my alma-mater all in just under 7-8 hrs! Mom, of course as usual forced me to the temple constructed by the Royals at the Palace gate on the pretext of a Puja for my Birthday!

Meanwhile, Aj got tickets for Golmaal – 3 in our second home – The Skyline theater and headed there as well! Trust me I do not want to write more than this on that movie. The best dialogue was that ‘If people stay in a glass house, they change their dress in the basement!’ waaah….

Then on the fun started, me and Abhi hit the roads to Chamundi Hills, the place we used to visit during the Dussera festival every year. Not that we visit the temples there, its just the ride and the greenery of the city that pushes us to take those bike-rides to the top often. And yes, this time as well, on those amazingly tarred roads, we were back at the city center in about an hour and tasted ‘churumuri’ by the town hall and well the eternal – ‘Phalaamrutha’ ice cream in the heritage ‘Landsdowne building’.

As we headed back home through the Irwin Road and the Princess Road to my home in the northern part of the city, was thinking of the day, after the meeting tomorrow before I head back to Manamai! Just after the meeting tomorrow with Mr. Lolla and Binoy, I am heading to meet Dhana, Thyagi, Rekha, who just returned from Bradley Stoke, Reshma and Navya (as of now) and looks like a reunion that had to happen long ago! With loads of time to spend before I have the bus back to Kalpakkam, the plan as of now is to work on the presentation and well, with crossed fingers, wait and watch if Dhana can get tickets to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows! Then this will be a trip which definitely covered what all I missed over the last six months!

As I head back to watch my favorite shows on NDTV now (one thing that I am not able to do on campus!), will close the blog with snaps from today’s ride.

Mysore City from Ch Hills 1

Mysore City from Ch Hills 1

Mysore City from Ch. Hills 2

Mysore City from Ch. Hills 2

The Town Hall - Mysore

The Town Hall - Mysore

The Clock Tower on Ashoka Road, near the main Palace

The Clock Tower on Ashoka Road, near the main Palace

Another Birthday… Another Venue…

It was a great start to the birthday! Thanks to Sharath, Karthik, Binoy, Iman, Krish, Rakesh, Sneha, Somnath, Deepa et al… and last but not the least Siva who even went till Chennai to the Tantra store! Cheers buddies! Had a great fun! That apart, I am looking or a deo which will take off the smell of the tomato sauce :). If you find any, mail me the link :).

Again, thanks for everything. Closing with very little description due to the Project Management exam tomorrow!

Amar

PS: Whoever ran the operation undercover! Great job… – A

Another One Year!

Yeah people did ask me on why I had put up this G Talk status. Probably it has now dawned on ’em. But well trust me as the notch on my wicket of age increases by one number in another two days. But, somehow I miss the birthdays back at home! Would probably laze at home and go to the temple in the evening (the only day I visit the temple apart from the yearly visits to the family deity). That seems much better than a tiring day outside in the world surrounded by many clueless people as to what is happening!

2 out of the past six years, probably I have been at home on this date, but seems inevitable that I stay back away this year as well. The aura of Mysore is somehow missed in the air, be it Ba, Br, Lo or Ch. Looking forward for the month end visit and re-union with all the old folks before a hectic season sets in.

Mentor or Tormentor

As I was reading some articles to develop a case study, as a part of the work that me, my colleague Binoy and one our Professors are working on at Great Lakes, I stumbled upon an article which talked about Mentoring in the Indian Medical Industry. Well closed the tab by mistake and could not relocate that article to link here, but certainly there seems to be a dearth of good mentors in any industry!

I have had the chances of having many good mentors in the five long years in the Information Technology industry as a consultant and probably even before that! Thought early morning four AM, is the right time to probably remember them as its been long since I even recollected those names! Yes, I dedicate this blog post to those who guided me across the past five years :).

First, it was Jayashree, Ravi, Vinay and Dr. Shekar Bhorgaonkar at HP Labs, Bengaluru. As I moved to Bangaluru, when it was still called Bangalore, in Feb 2001, the aura of the newly opened Forum, the taste of the McD burgers (one reason I hope, my ex-team understands why I detested them going to McDs for all those unwanted parties we had :)) was probably driving me away from the core research work I was working on with Dr. Shekar – a part or the extension of his brainchild the GKB. It was then that Ravi n Jayasree who drove some sense in getting both me and Dushyant back to work and understand the criticality. It was mostly through their action and not by coercion. We were influenced by their dedication and hard work! Vinay on the other hand was a perfect guide and we did learn quite a lot technically from him which are of great use even today! On the other end Dr Shekar, was the Director of HP labs and well on the first looks you could never bet upon that, he sat with us, worked with us, dined with us without any air. Clearly a management lesson on leading your team forward by involvement. On my last day in labs, he asked me and Dushyant as to what our goals were, there were some 20 odd BITS, Pilani interns with us and were well decided on their future. Well Dushyant was clear that it was one of the IIMs and was probably offered to continue his role, which he declined and spent an year cooling his heels before heading to Ahmedabad. I was confused, now I had a mouthwatering offer in a niche firm to the internship there to higher studies, to which Dr. Shekar said – well hit back the bed think, if you are not going for studies now, I do not think you must continue in this role! Straight and honest :).

I did just that and well as I pursue my program here at Great Lakes, I think five years of work experience has given me much more of an edge and understanding capabilities which probably was what he was referring to at some point of time.

Moving on in Torry Harris, where I spent a relatively unheard of five years (Yeah! Somehow I was too lazy to move or attrition was unheard of in Floor #3), I did have a chance to interact with a few great mentors like Lata, Manasa and Dhana who even today guide me in times of crisis. Dhana to a large extent tries to own up things and plan when your mind reaches a blank. The philosophy that these people followed in Torry, which I presume I continued to some extent after they exit was probably Team Oriented Management Mentoring – what has been defined as aiding individuals to develop abilities in high performance organizations while battling for space in competitive environments – which you can see as perfect examples in Maddy, Harsha, me et al…. I had seen the exact opposite also, so probably can differentiate between the two pretty easily and the legacy left behind by the team that was built from the mid-2000’s still stays on.

In Orange, I met one heck of a person. Yeah I am sure he would not mind me using such words. He was a bar bouncer by night, a Line manager managing their operations by day. Wow! He just meant take life seriously, but take it easy! I have never seen anyone who could hop between clubs, drink shots after shots of tequila and still come back, stand straight in office the next morning and positively attend all the high-profile meetings and schedules with such little preparation! Only Dhana probably gave him some competition in that aspect. No one else did. People called him rude, brash, but trust me many would agree that in that environment he was the most ‘people-friendly, objective-focused, logical’ manager. Sad that Vic, is not in Orange anymore but still his charismatic leadership was an example for anyone and working for a long time under him, probably maximized by learning!

As I move on probably, today, I have meetings with my officially nominated mentor and unofficially accepted mentor. I would not argue who is better here, its probably known and not the right time/ place to pick it up! The only point that I wanted to make here is that its through great mentoring that great teams are built up. Mentoring processes must not be focused on individual development but much more of a team development and organization oriented. That is when, it would probably reach the pinnacle. Mentoring is more than initiatives, competencies and approaches, its about maintaining relationships.

Its probably time that I went back to Bengaluru and meet Naveen, Navya, Kapil, Alok, Reshma, Vishal, Ranjana et al… and figure out if I was their Mentor or Tormentor?

Of Capitalism… From Nowhere

The last I read about Capitalism was when I was preparing for my GMAT/GRE essays/ RC’s and GD/PI, with socialism and capitalism being the most common topic chosen by the confused souls who try to confuse others more by picking these! One my colleagues, I think was again in such a confusion, while he was preparing for a debate on weather capitalism has lost its way out! Here are some points I had put forth for him:

Why capitalism has outlived its utility?

  • The world is calling for capital controls, controls in foreign exchange, better wages, end to informalisation, safeguard the public sector companies etc. These challenge the core essence of capitalism.
  • It is capitalism that created “economic crisis”, now that “downturn” has turned into “recession” and even the almost forgotten word “depression” has come back into the vocabulary (Courtesy: LeftCom)
  • The free market credo that has been shoved down our throats for almost three decades, has been replaced by calls for central banks to inject liquidity, for governments to coordinate fiscal stimuli(Courtesy: LeftCom)
  • Capitalistic class was parasitic class and now, the time for the world is to create global community producing directly for human need without money or profit

Why Capitalism may Still Succeed???

  • If you look at the Indian context, the direction in which the caste politics is heading is been more of a co-optation. I.e its heading into a larger system of capitalism. In realm of inclusion, hitherto unheard of social categories are formed and has lead to dominant form of capital accumulation.
  • Nowadays, opposition to capitalistic ideas gets reduced to a liberal, social democratic position which wants to live within capitalism with minor modifications
  • Capitalism is the only option for development because it gives one liberty to chose and even the poor will be benefitted if the true agenda of global capitalism is pursued. The need is for ‘free capitalism, which exists “when politicians pursue liberal policies and entrepreneurs do business” – Norberg
  • It can never outlive its utility because as Peter Drucker says: Capitalism, was never about products and profits, it was all about people and values; and management was doing the right things for the people.

So, is it ‘Long Live Capitalism’?