ArpitGarg's Weblog

An opinion of the world around me

Posts Tagged ‘budget

Tax Slabs Unchanged: A welcome change

leave a comment »

Union-Budget-2013Finance Minister has kept tax slabs unchanged this budget 2015-16. Disagreeing with the popular notion, I welcome this. I’ll tell you why.

It goes back to the root question, “What do we expect of our Govt.?” For me personally, I expect my life to get better. Public amenities to get better, Traffic situation to get better, Better Roads, Better Air, Affordable Housing. I expect to retire early and save enough for leisure. For me none of these wishes are granted by easing of Tax-Slabs. A few thousand rupees extra in my pocket seems nothing but a bribe.

Yes BRIBE. It feels like Govt. throwing bones to a dog. Something like, “We won’t do anything to give you a better quality of life, but here, I am throwing few thousand bucks to you. Lap it up and shut up. Vote for me the next time too”. For me it’s nothing better than a MNREGS like subsidy. I am totally against it.

Hence I commend FM. Thanks for not throwing bones to me and bribing me. Hope you utilize the tax I pay to give me what I want in the long run. Let future FM’s too hear this loud and clear. Don’t try and buy my integrity and my vote. Create sustained resources. Give me the nation of my dreams.

Written by arpitgarg

February 28, 2015 at 8:38 pm

Posted in Political

Tagged with , , ,

The Apathy of General Class

leave a comment »

This weekend I was travelling by train. I had a slight argument with train attendant. According to him, “Bedsheets don’t belong to railways, they belong to me”. I didn’t completely understand why he said so; have raised this query with railways, which I know would go unanswered.

Since rail budget is round the corner, I would like to touch upon a topic that has been neglected year after year. The General Class compartment. According to a news report around 2.3cr people travel by trains daily. Out of them around 1.5cr travel by General Class. Tectonic 65%, around the same as total voter percentage last General Elections.

Whilst train fares have been increased time and again, the situation of General Class Compartment has not improved. Wooden seats, People fighting a war to get inside. All of you would have seen long lines, manned by policemen, waiting to get inside the train. Those lines are to get inside the General Compartment.

Whenever you feel things are not going well in your life, imagine the apathy of people in General Compartment, you will stop complaining. 65% figure does not mirror Govt.’s priorities. I see hardly 3-4 General Compartments whenever I travel.

I would have expected 65% Compartments to be of General Class in trains, Alas! It’s not the case. Well, Democracy works differently in theory and in practice.

train

Written by arpitgarg

February 25, 2015 at 3:18 am

Posted in General/Society

Tagged with , , ,

Laluisms and Indian Railways

with one comment

Lalu Prasad Yadav’s railway budgets used to be special. He started a trend of sorts with rhymes in his speech. It takes an orator in command for the words to take effect. Not everyone would have had the same effect. The rhymes themselves were not a random phenomenon. They reflected the state of affairs of Railways. The Mood. I try to put together few such rhymes in accordance with the changing Railways each year. Could be easily divided into three phases.

1. Phase I: The Beginning
When Lalu got hold of ministry, it was in shambles and Lauisms in the initial budgets reflected that.

There was hope of building a new future. Hard labor was needed to fulfill the dream.
                “मैंने देखे हैं सारे ख्वाब नए,
                  लिख रहा हूँ मैं इंक़लाब नए”
                “मेरे जुनूं का नतीजा ज़रूर निकलेगा,
                  इसी सियाह समंदर से नूर निकलेगा”

There was a tough path ahead. Help of every individual was needed to overcome the hurdles.
                “जीवन के हर पथ पर माली पुष्प नहीं बिखराता है,
                  प्रगति का पथ अक्सर पथरीला ही होता है”
                “एक कदम  हम  बढे, एक कदम तुम,
                  आओ  मिलकर नाप दे, फासले चाँद तक”

Overall it laid expectations from the future.

2. Phase II: The Delivery
During his later budgets he stood on solid performance and growth. Hope gave way to conviction.

We have come so far by a collective effort. We have redefined success.
                “नवाजिश है सबकी, कर्म है सभी का,
                  बड़े  फ़ख्र से हम बुलंदी पर आये|
                  तरक्की के सारे मयारों  से आगे,
                  नए ढंग लाये, नयी सोच लाये”

Charges were not increased amidst the inflation. We came good on our promises. Wait for more.
                “दौर-ऐ-महंगाई में भी रेल सस्ती रखी,
                  पर कमाई में कोई कमी न रखी”
                “जितना अब तक देख चुके हो, ये तो बस शुरुआत है,
                  खेल तमाशा आगे देखो, दरियादिल सौदागर का”

Overall mood migrated from hope to conviction of delivery.

3. Phase III: The Continuance
His last budgets were more of a commentary of his achievements. Election budget!

                “गोल पर गोल दाग रहे हैं, हम हर मैच में,
                  देश का बच्चा बच्चा बोले, चक दे रेलवे”

He summed up his achievements. What had been done in his tenure will help reap benefits in the long term. We have just planted a tree. Everyone will grow with it. Commitment to duty.
                “सब कह रहे हैं हमने गज़ब काम किया है,
                  करोड़ों का मुनाफा हर एक शाम दिया है,
                  फल सालों यह अब देगा, पौधा जो लगाया है,
                  सेवा का, समर्पण का, हर फ़र्ज़ निभाया है”

Overall mood was of letting people know of what was delivered. Of coming good on the promises. One more chance, perhaps!

Here comes the Train

with 2 comments

I like tuning in to hear Railways’ budget speech. Lalu’s witty rhymes were always a treat. One never felt bored. Even the opposition members had a laugh. Mamata Di presented the budget this year. There were a number of good announcements including low price bottled water, women RPF and the proposed new lines.

Don’t worry I have no intentions to dissect the railways budget. You can watch the balding man with broad specs on the news for that.I have always rued the fact that Indian Train never got its due. Consider its contribution to Hindi Cinema. Had Bollywood been the same without the Indian Train? I have always visualized Train as a movie star. Train has played innumerable roles over the years. Do we remember any? No! We would remember the silly dog from Teri Meherbaniyan instead. What blasphemy!
Movies came and went but nobody noticed the Train. There were silly whistles for Madhubala to Maduri to Aishwarya. But when it came to Train, Nothing. It was looted, plundered, ran upon but never did any film critic found its performance worth mentioning.

It was time someone stood up and brought an end to this madness. Here I present before you top 10 memorable roles played by Train in Indian movies of the modern era. Its redemption time!

10. The Train
One of the few lead roles over a prolonged career. Train transformed itself from the dusty old Passenger to the modern Metro. And all we remember is Aamirs transformation in Ghajini. The movie proved to be a dud and all the blame fell on Train. A leading movie critic said and I quote, “Not catering to Indian sensibilities. We like the dirty and dusty old train. Train now makes movies for the NRI’s only.”

9. Veer and Bros.
Since eternity, actors have loved running atop the Train. I don’t know why. Maybe they take some carnal pleasure in keeping Train under their feet. From Amitabh to Salman to Imran, all have tried their legs at that. How Train manages to leave an impression even in such inconsequential roles is a different matter altogether. Bollywood has gone as far as to oppose the electrification of Train. It wants to keep it the old coal run. All the wires above would prove to be a hindrance (to run atop, Of course!).

I chose Salman’s Veer for the sheer love he has for the Train. He even dedicated his muscled body to the Train. In an interview he said, “I Train in the morning. I Train in the afternoon, I Train in the night, I Train all the time. How else do you think I got these muscles?”

8. Ek Chaales Ki Last Local
Train played the role of an invisible being. It was there, at the same time it was not. We felt the presence all along but never saw it. Observe how in the image below you see the tracks but no Train. It’s there, believe me. It’s just invisible. Being a method actor, it is said that Train decided to become invisible for the whole 2:40 mins and still does so every night.

7. Sholay
Remember the scene where Daaku chased the Train on horses and Jai Veeru helped Thakur. Train played a highly praised cameo. As memorable role as that of Sambha. A single scene but we remember it till date. Don’t we? I mean Train not Sambha.

6. Jab we met
The modern day love story. Just when we thought that Train has reached the end of its career, it managed to rise form the ashes. Scintillating performance. The timing when it decides to leave the station thereby aiding Shahid and Kareen to meet. Perfect. How it was able to fool the intelligent actress twice is worth mentioning here. Way to go Train. You made yet another love story possible

5. Kuch Kuch Hota Hai
One of my favorite characters. In the image below we see Sharukh getting emotional to part with the Train. And we thougt it was because of Kajol. He wanted the Train to stay. Train increased the speed just enough to let the dupatta fly away. Perfect execution. Such an emotional performance by the Train. Lovely.

4. Jai ho
Indian train decided to go global. It was offered a role in Hollywood movie Slumdog Millionaire and it grabbed it with both hands. The dance sequence was excellent. The Train arrived at the Oscars with a whistle.

3. Dil Se
Who can forget the amazing balance of the Train in the song Chaiyya Chaiyya. Train outperformed itself yet again. The way it carried the weight of the characters and the story on its back, still was able to keep its track was showing of a great performer. In fact Shahrukh secretly credits his success to the Train.

2. The Burning Train
Train was in the lead here and came out with flying colors. Junta clapped each time the train whisteled. It was a difficult role. Train was badly burnt and bruised by the time the shooting was over. But it never swayed its way. It kept running at the constant speed. Come what may! It was Arjun, in pursuit of the Eye. Majestic!

1. Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge
This one comes right at the top. In fact for me it’s all over from 1 to 10. I fell in love with Train for life long. Observe the different getups of Train. Disguised as Euro Rail, it made Shahrukh-Kajol meet. Remember the scene where Train decides to lock them up in a compartment with a couple of shakes thrown in. The improvisation was excellent.

At the end observe the Indian getup. How well it looked on the Train. Running fast and slow at the same time. Fast in long range shots and slow in close range shots. Exquisite. It slowed itself down at the appropriate moment to let Kajol in. I can watch the scene again and again. In fact I would give the award for the best trio to “Shah-Kajol-Train”.?

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: