Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Himalaya Awaitzzz... and its Mission Sarpass!!!

Well... it was on Feb 01, 2009 that we did online booking to the National Himalayan Trekking Expedition-09 through YHAI(Youth Hostel Association of India). The route which we have opted and we beleive one of the best routes (after doing some wild research) is SARPASS. Our reporting date is May 4th and we are all set to leave Bangalore by train on Apr 30th.
Wow! i have read many blogs till now and have seen lot many photographs of SARPASS route. I must say! we are lucky having booked this route just by looking into those mindblowing spectacular photographs. For more details on the route, please refer the link:
3 months of watiting time (had even written a poem: we spent like 3 minutes and now its the day we are all set to leave. Busy with packing stuffs, enquiring still on what to take & what not to take; checking with everyone and anyone who had been to the Himalayas earlier; harassing people to get the right information; and harassing people by saying 1001 times that we are going to himalayas.... wow...watten experience! am just loving it!
All the folks around me are even more excited that we are going to himalayas and they are quite surprised that we have applied for so many days of leave just for a trek!!! well... yes! if we apply for leave, it will be always for a trek!!! (What say folks ;) )
Concidently, we even got in touch with 3 more people who are joining us on May 4th and yes! they are from our Bengaluru! We are looking forward to meet them soon.
Well... this is the update for now.. and yes.. you will get to read more and more details once we are back!! we are landing in Bengaluru back on 18th May.
Till then Ciaoooooooooooooooo! Take Care!
From: Shivu, TS, Raghu, Sujan, Divya and Me :)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I Voted for “NOBODY”

Yes! I did it… I opted for 49-O - “Elector refusing to vote”.

Yesterday I was reading my friend’s blog post on “Whether to vote a party or independent candidate?” which then triggered me to do some search to know the details on candidates who are contesting for Bangalore South constituency. There were few independent candidates contesting for the first time and their profiles were impressive. Although I was interested in only one profile, later I learnt from one of the article which said that the candidate (I was interested) will eventually join a big party and it was most certain. So without second thought, I decided to go with 49-O. As the argument continues, even if you vote for an independent candidate, it is most certain that he will get acquired by big fishes.

After reading my friend’s post, I left a comment that “I vote NOBODY this time” which triggered my friend also to think about the same and later we both decided to go with 49-O. We got complete details from the Law Ministry website ( and we were set to get on with the option. Here is the excerpt from the law document on 49-O:

49-O. Elector deciding not to vote.-If an elector, after his
electoral roll number has been duly entered in the register of voters
in Form-17A and has put his signature or thumb impression thereon as
required under sub-rule (1) of rule 49L, decided not to record his
vote, a remark to this effect shall be made against the said entry in
Form 17A by the presiding officer and the signature or thumb
impression of the elector shall be obtained against such remark.

Today morning I took a 20 min class to my parents about the 49-O and they were little worried that I am actually going to do that. My dad went onto an extent telling “Politics is a dirty game and do not mess with it”. I did not understand anything out of that as I had decided that I vote NOBODY this time.

Since I was busy doing some writing in the morning, I thought of going to the polling booth in the afternoon. But I could not wait till the afternoon as my friend had already voted in the morning and the best part was she did actually vote for NOBODY. Bravo! Although she went through tough time at the polling booth to make them understand on her decision of refusing to vote, she did it. So I decided to leave immediately after listening to her on her experience.

While I was excitingly walking to the booth, the thought that was coming to my mind was “what if I get a bunch of jokers at the booth who will stop me from opting for 49-O like the way they tried for my friend?”. I reached the booth at 12 Pm and had to stand in the queue. I was keenly observing each and every voter who was standing in the line and was expecting there will be someone like me!

My turn came and I went to the electoral officers and gave my voter ID card. They found my record, and they asked me to sign on the register. I did everything that they wanted except for going to the voting machine. I said “Officer, I have decided not to vote any of the candidates this time and please mark your entry against my record as ‘I refused to vote’ as per the 49-O”. There was a sudden silence and all the three officers were shocked and they were looking at me like the way they look at some thriller movie!!!

The way my friend had tough time and the thought which was coming to my mind while I was walking is what I actually encountered. All the three officers were reluctant to accept my words and they were behaving as if they were not aware of this option. I had to ask them to pull out their election rules book to check on the option and fortunately I had taken a printout of 49-O.
Finally they got convinced (actually they were very much aware of this option but just to make me vote, I guess they played the trick) and the asked the person who was updating the details in the register to mark “Refused to Vote” in the remarks field of my record. Out of the three officers, 2 were absolutely fine but the third guy was still not happy with my decision. He actually asked me to take some time and come back with the better decision to vote. Finally I had to give them mouthful to stop forcing me to change my decision and came out of the booth. And yes! With absolute politeness, I went to the person with the ink and asked her to kindly mark it on my finger. She did it with a smile! What else can she do???

I know that my vote may not be useful but it is certainly not misused. It is my vote and my decision to vote for a candidate or vote for NOBODY as per 49-O. When there are no good candidates, why chose them?

You have the right to chose or not to chose them. So let's make our vote count…!


Thursday, April 2, 2009

Where did we lose our self expression?

You must be thinking what the h*%# this guy is asking? Yes! I repeat the question ‘Where did we lose our self expression?’

Well… I just loved this evening’s bus journey from office. Not because it was a comfortable ‘BMTC Volvo’ drive, but it was because of the three lovely kids Aditi, Gagan and Deepthi. I do not know any of these kids but by the time I reached my bus stop, I was totally refreshed!

Like every day, we (Amaresh and I) took the Volvo bus 500-k which comes near our office at 5.05 pm and as usual it was crowded and we did not get to sit until we reached Silk board junction. It was a hectic day and we were stressed out. As soon as we got the seat, I was feeling sleepy and I actually slept off till Banashankari (BSK). Our great bus driver was playing old kannada music which added exponentially to my sleep. After couple of stops from BSK, I heard loud noise and thought a big crowd entering the bus and then I realized that it was Aditi, Gagan and Deepthi and two ladies. Aditi was the youngest (may be of 4 years age) of all the three and Deepthi was the eldest (may be of 6 years age). Gagan is Deepthi’s younger brother (may be of 5 years age). I came to know about their names because I was watching them like watching my favourite show ‘Tom & Jerry’. All three of them were absolutely cute. Most purified and double refined form of cuteness!!!

Both the ladies sat together and these three kids took one full seat (2 chairs) and sat next to each other. All they were discussing was about the Volvo bus. All three of them wanted the window seat. So they started fighting which made Gagan to get up from that seat and luckily there was another empty seat and he went and sat next to the window and started staring at both Aditi and Deepthi. I am sure this Gagan will become a crazy guy in the future! The reason is he wanted Aditi to sit next to him and finally he pulled her next to him and to prove that he is a boy, he sacrificed his window seat to her. Now Deepthi became alone. After couple of minutes, there were hardly a few passengers in the bus and most of the seats were empty. Now all three of them decided to take window seats and they were enjoying the window view. Suddenly Deepthi started playing a game. She said whenever driver applies the brakes, she will move to the next seat. Gagan and Aditi too followed the same. After a while Aditi got bored and angrily said ‘am not playing it as it is not good’. Gagan was adventurous as he was doing lot of gymnastics like one leg on Deepthi’s seat and the other on Aditi’s seat, he was trying to do the bar exercise and was trying to jump. Although I wanted to tell him to be careful, I just kept watching his play. What can his mother do? She tried to control him three times and finally gave up. These kids are always crazy like this (even I was like this); they will not listen to anyone. They just speak their mind and they just do what they like. At some point, they started shouting as if all the other passengers in the bus are deaf people and cannot hear them properly.

Huh! What a show for me. Finally our stop came and we had to get down. Gagan and Deepthi also got down with their mother at our stop. And they were saying ‘bye bye’ to Aditi. And I could see Gagan’s sad face with his hand waving at her for 5 minutes!

Phew! While I was walking back home, I was thinking about my childhood days where I used to have the 100% self expression; if I think about our status now, do we even have 1% of it? (But I am still 100% self expressive with few of my friends and they know what I mean :) ). I remembered a workshop which I attended 3 years back on “Self Expression and Leadership Program” with Landmark education. The objective of that workshop was to get back the self expression which we have lost and with that self expression try winning people in life. Our coach in the workshop even behaved like a kid in front of us and we enjoyed the sessions very much as we were speaking our mind for few days. Good initiative isn’t it?

Do you think that is possible in our lives now after crossing 20s and 30s? 1st thing that comes to mind before you say something is “what if the other person takes me in a wrong way?” “What if I he/she feels bad” “what if I look bad instead of looking good”. That’s the end of our self expression. I think we do not even think of being 100% self expressive because of so many constraints and many meanings we create around our own expressions. Why? Why cannot we be like Aditi, Gagan and Deepthi? Why cannot we speak our mind? Why cannot we do what we like? Or maybe even Aditi, Gagan and Deepthi will lose their self expression once they grow up in this chaotic world. Who knows?

But where do you think we lose that self expression? Can we search for an answer for this question?

Please do not try Google to search!!! Is it not important for us to be self expressive to be happy in this life?