Man thinking of which of the 2 directions to take

Thinking Fast and Slow.

Currently, I am reading the book Thinking Fast and Slow and as of now, it is amazing. But, this is not about the book, I just wanted to use the title.

Man thinking of which of the 2 directions to take
Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Alright, I will admit that I have been slow this time. Probably not paying too much attention to news/Twitter has made me so. But finally, I have made my opinion about the ongoing issues of the world which are bothering my brethren, if I may.

In the beginning, when Citizenship Amendment Bill was tabled before Parliament, my initial quick reaction was ‘Alright! This might trigger some disturbance due to it sounding like discriminatory’. Having said that, I had no clue why it was being brought. We all already knew very little about NRC thingy going in Assam. Who was left out, who was kept, what happened finally?

Then I read a bit more and understood that it was to fulfill the long-standing demand of providing safe haven to persecuted minorities of Akhand-Bharat region i.e. Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh who are seeking shelter in India, after all, India is the motherland of all the included religions and all.

Then I made myself satisfied by putting this CAB thing into Things-I-Need-Not-Fret-Over. By this time, Jamia students had tasted the brutal blow of Police Lathi in Dilli ki Sardi, as they say. Now that caused a brouhaha over social media in all shapes and forms. Everyone I knew online and everyone I know offline were divided if you know what I mean. I couldn’t decide at that time as I thought both sides have their valid points. While Govt. was doing what they promised, as per their agenda since time immemorial, the bright young folks of our youthful nation were protesting as it was clearly a cause of concern because of it being a prequel to NRC. Which side to pick? I am still a youth and I am also a law-abiding citizen, last time I checked.

Then some more protests happened, more violent it became, more vocal / creative / loud, the social media became and it became a bigger issue than you could ignore just like that. Then I read more and saw more. Both sides didn’t want to budge down.

I had a few points in my mind which demanded clarification. I am listing them down and providing an argument to them.

ArgumentPossible Counter Argument
Minorities in Af, Pak, Ban need our support. We are big-hearted.Can we first support ourselves properly before supporting others?
Where will poor Hindus come if not India?They could go to Nepal, and anywhere else. Even the middle east. They are allowed mostly everywhere.
What would happen when NRC gets applied? After all, we should know who is a citizen and who isn’t.We all remember what Indian Govts. are capable of in terms of mismanaging a reasonable idea? Does anyone remember Demonetization?
Shouldn’t we trust Govt. when they are saying that no Indian citizen would be harmed?Harm is already done now. People have taken sides. The division has already happened. It has been there since 1947. Why fuel the fire? There are other ways to check borders? We can build a wall. *ahem*
NPRWhat?
Yes, one more card.Please.

And so on. My 2nd last post was about Indian Adhesives. i.e. movies, cricket, and ISRO which gave us reasons to celebrate and be united. Immediately after that, we have to see such scenes where police are brutally beating students. People who have no business and no understanding of the situation are burning buses and thereby making govt. more stern about their plan. The vicious circle has become more vicious and more circular.

So, what have I finally thought after thinking fast and slow? I think that if we align our energies to make simpler things better, we are better off rather than trying to be a Super Power by 2020. We have better aims to achieve. We have better things to create. We have better fights to fight.

We can do better than this.

P.S.: Don’t shut off bloody Internet again and again. And continue to try to avoid Social Media because everyone wants to shout out their opinions louder and the louder it becomes, the less truthful it remains.

Lunar Surface

The New Indian Adhesive

It’s ISRO obviously.

What else could unite us all at 2 AM in the morning? It used to be Cricket only. Sometimes movies. But from September 7, 2019, ISRO is the next Indian adhesive, I think!

Well, Chandrayaan 2 is a partial success after all. It reached pretty far accurately, even became the first Indian object to touch the Lunar Surface (right?) may be through a hard landing, but lost the communication channel to tell us about it. As soon as this image came onto the screen, deafening silence engulfed everyone over. It felt a bit hollow inside as if the heartbeat had stopped.

via ISRO Youtube

It is certainly important to introspect this image and the data it brings, but this should never deter us from attempting it again. Yes, we didn’t make it cleanly but ISRO is a winner all the way.

Recent feats achieved by ISRO (including this) will go very far for our upcoming generation. Sheer excitement amongst the folks who are least interested in space, or are cynical about anything India does, certainly got us united and got us cheering for ISRO all the way.

I really liked this one Tweet.

https://twitter.com/Abhina_Prakash/status/1170084662233849856

This is exactly why ISRO exists. It tells us that impossible is nothing. If we dedicate our focus on the right things, we can reach anywhere. It might take more than 1 attempt, but we will be there sooner or later.

Next time, ISRO does Gaganyaan or Aditya Mission or the exoplanetary mission, the cheer would grow even louder and we will all be stuck to our devices, watching the live streaming. The next time, it would be a successful touchdown.

https://www.cricbuzz.com/cricket-news/106007/india-break-70-year-drought-with-2-1-series-win-in-australia

Morning Motivation Served On A Platter

It took more years than I have been alive. And not only me, whole generations, in fact. It took so many alarms not at all snoozed and waking up early to see the leather brushing off the noses and the chins of Indian Batsman. It took so many sledging lessons. It took many greats which were deemed equivalent to Gods. It took so many VVSs, Dravids, and Sachins but the dream was still a dream.

Till today. Today, it has finally been achieved.

Congratulations Indian Cricket Team for defeating Australia 2-1 in the tests for the first time ever.

The Indian players pose with the Border-Gavaskar Trophy David Gray/AFP/Getty Images

The Indian players pose with the Border-Gavaskar Trophy via David Gray/AFP/Getty Images

The Moon

Shoot for the moon

In case you have been following this blog lately and have noticed a break in the blogging streak so early, please note that I was out vacationing and all. So, kindly excuse. I said I will blog almost daily. 1-2 days off in between should be okay, I guess!

A few days ago, I came across an article/ news that ISRO and Indus Moon Mission have parted ways in a not so happy manner which means that India’s first ever private moon mission and in fact India’s very first mission with a Lunar Land Rover is in danger of getting scrapped.

This was heartbreaking. For those who are unfamiliar the Indus Moon Mission is a private firm based in Bengaluru which is competing in a brilliantly conceptualized Google Lunar XPrize contest.

As per the contest:

The competition’s $30 million prize purse will be awarded to teams who are able to land a privately funded rover on the moon, travel 500 meters, and transmit back high definition video and images.

This is the future we see in the movies. Private firms competing to land their spacecraft on different planets.

The deadline for this is March 31, 2018. But due to this fallout between Team Indus and ISRO, it seems bleak that India’s entry would have much chance, as of now. Fingers crossed. Not only that, PSLV of ISRO was also slated to carry another competitor of XPrize Japan’s HAKUTO.

I have always envisioned our country (no sarcasm) as one which will always be at the forefront of space missions. Despite our economic conditions, I strongly believe that if we put aside some budget to aim for these gigantic scientific feats and put trust in our able team of scientists, it would always work in the end. For those who argue against this and put forward the notion of spending money only in uplifting poor should understand that the amount of inspiration a young poor kid can get by seeing their fellow countrymen sending things in outer space on a tight budget but with an unmistakable accuracy, that amount of inspiration is unfathomable and can lead to an amazing future generation. Each such mission could mean putting seeds of inspiration in young kids minds who would turn up and be the next Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam.

This setback for Indus Mission was quite a shocker as all these days, they were very much enthusiastic regarding this partnership made in heaven. However, things might not be that bad as Indus Team is still marching ahead with their plan and looking forward to another partner.

It would have been doubly great with ISRO but if they are able to sustain and maintain their zeal, hopefully, they will shoot for the moon and hit the target (via a soft landing).

I wish them the best and hope to write another congratulatory blog post after March 2018. Also, ISRO is planning for their own Moon Mission pretty soon as well. Kudos to them as well, as always.

You may read more on Indus Moon Mission here:

  • https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/team-indus-the-first-indian-space-start-up-drops-out-of-moon-race-1797928?amp=1&akamai-rum=off&__twitter_impression=true
  • https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/science/isro-teamindus-deal-falls-apart-japanese-moon-mission-delayed/articleshow/62502748.cms
  • https://sputniknews.com/asia/201703021051195419-india-moon-mission/

Update on Jan 24, 2018

An Ode to the Bengaluru Road

Gone are those days, when people’s talking taste was only about Weather and Traffic. The new talk of the town, hey smile.. don’t frown, is the locations of potholes so specific.

They add to the beauty, and act as the dimple, oh road you cutie! They’re spread across everywhere in the city. They don’t spare anyone, a pedestrian or a wheeler, but only the helicopters and that’s a pity.

They are spread across all the roads in a peculiarly random fashion. You might avoid one, or may be even 2, but you cannot help but get into another and learn a quick driving lesson.

Because where else will you get such a lovely training to drive and BONUS: open your senses to the unpicked garbage’s stench for free? With increase in concentration and ability to stretch, (the answer is everywhere in the country).

Some manholes would be open, some would be absent. Some men will fall and become God’s tenant. Some holes would be wide, some will be narrow. If you haven’t bathe since yesterday, it will rain again 2 days in a row, carry an umbrella or you can take open shower tomorrow.

You have nothing to lose. It will only make you good, while driving with one hand as and putting the other to cover your no(o)se.

The randomness of the holes cannot be measured but at least that’s what makes them something to be treasured. As one survives the potholed lanes, one finally reaches the city’s foamy veins.

I saw one guard, stopping a cameraman from taking the pics of one of the lathery Lake. But all in vain as the froth was in full flow, lake gave everyone around a low blow, we inhaled more toxin than the pics that he could ever take.

So is the condition everywhere in Monsoon, or otherwise. The asphalt is laid but withers away too soon, and we keep tolerating it like common loons. We cannot be optimistic or get our hopes up because whatever dream of development you have, will, for optical fibre cable, get dug up.

Hardly Surprising: Thoughts on Bengaluru's Apparent Night of Horror

What else do you expect to happen to a girl (or say girls) surrounded by 1000s of men on road at Midnight?

Do you expect grown up Indian men to behave well in Public? Haha. Seriously?

If you are reading this, and you are a girl, may I ask your expectations from Bangalore? (Or any other city in India for that matter) You thoughts things would be better after 2012 December? You must be living under a rock.

How can people even expect mobs in India to not indulge in unruly behavior? I mean, where were you all these years (since forever). When were we good to women, is all I want to ask? Was it during the time, some RSS folks might argue, before invaders came from up North/West/Central Asia? If yes, that time has passed long back. And I am pretty sure, that even then we were the same. If I can remember, I am sure that Indian men (#YesAllMen) have never sympathized nor empathized with what women face daily. Some people are tweeting incessantly sharing what their friends faces. As if that would help. Nopes. This is not cynical. This is real.

Just because TV News is paying attention to it for 3–4 days, doesn’t mean that it is going to get solved.

And how come Bengaluru is treated as if this is some special part of the country where people are extra mannered and cultured. Hehe, no, Bangalore is same as rest of India. Now at least I can feel, how Delhi people must be feeling.

2 Things A Soldier Needs

In a country like India, where even getting basic amenities is a struggle, there are only 2 things a Soldier, who defends us 24/7, needs.

Just 2 things. Optimism and Motivation.

the-memorial-stands-as-a-token-of-our-tribute-to-the-indian-army

 

They need to have that optimism, that whatever their job requires them to do, they should do that with best of their abilities. Their optimism helps them to do the job to fulfill some cause. The cause being safety and well-being of fellow citizens. They are hopeful that when they accomplish their jobs, someone somewhere would feel safer. Someone somewhere would have a place to stay. Someone somewhere would have something to eat. They are hopeful that their effort won’t go in vain. They are hopeful that even if their individual effort isn’t recognized, their leader, their team, their battalion or their country would get something better. Nobody wants to go to war. Nobody signs up with Army to kill someone else in order to win a war. They sign up to defend. But if someone has decided to get signed up, they’re hopeful that their in-charges would attempt their best to avoid confrontation directly or indirectly with another soldier who is hopeful for someone else, just like they are.

Another thing they need is motivation. They don’t get best treatment when it comes to place to stay, climate to work under, infrastructure to work with and even the equipment to work on. So they survive with just motivation. They are able to do what they are supposed to do, just because they have got a motivation. Their fellow soldiers motivate them. Their leader has motivated them. Their families have motivated them. Their country has motivated them*.

*Conditions Apply

There was a news recently of Indian army’s attempt to strike strategically some areas in the Kashmir which is under Pakistan’s occupation. Their sole motive was to destroy the camps which harbor people who keep sending infiltrators and terrorists to the  Indian sides and kill innocents. Army claimed that they achieved their mission successfully and in a way, took revenge of the Uri attacks and also send a signal to the terrorists that enough is enough.

How they did it, when they did it and did they do it actually, is immaterial and for everyone’s safety, should be, and is classified. If you don’t believe in it, your wish. You want to dance and celebrate it, your wish.

Now suppose you don’t believe it, which is fine, but if you question the integrity of the system again and again, what is the message are you sending to the world? That you don’t trust your army? Sure you can hate the government and their policies. But by raising doubts about the very statement which CANNOT be made public because it is a question of severe intelligence compromise, don’t you think you should take a step back? Don’t you think that by discussing the same thing over and over again, on news, on tv, you are not shaking the 2 very beliefs the soldier needs to be able to do their job properly? Don’t you think that more you do this, more the soldier would be forced to think that whatever they do, gets no appreciation, neither monetary, nor financially, so why should they do it honestly in the first place? You can say whatever you want, but isn’t this a basic fundamental duty to not meddle with lives of others, specially those who need soldiers and armies when basically every neighborhood country is at logger heads with us?

Don’t stoop so low, just to satisfy your own ego that you take away the only 2 things a soldier needs to be a soldier: Optimism and Motivation.