ArpitGarg's Weblog

An opinion of the world around me

Posts Tagged ‘west

Back Office in the West

with one comment

Somewhere during the early ‘90s, everyone realized the immense potential of outsourcing industry. With telecom/data rates on the decline, we saw call centre, KPO, BPO, captive units grow rapidly, changing the lives of a whole generation and realizing the dreams of an entire country.

With jobs, money, prosperity; a slow cultural impregnation has also taken place. We never realized when 31st Dec became the be all and end all of cyclical culmination of celebration. We never realized when Diwali holidays became a rarity and Christmas holidays became a norm. Ladoo/Barfi gave way for Cakes; Jalebis became Donuts; Lassi became too heavy to handle and Coffee light.

All this happened in India coz the jobs coming in were from countries like US, UK etc. I wonder what would have happened if the jobs would have originated from India and Indian culture would have influenced countries around the world.

The light footprint of the world would have been dazzling, the Diwali Night. The next day of Holi, people around the world would have gone schools/colleges/office having tinges of pink/green color on their faces.

A certain person in NY would have woken to Aloo Paratha with butter for breakfast. Haldiram’s would be in place of MacD/Pizza Huts all around the globe. John would have taken his family for a Kachori/Jalebi outing and VadaPao would have been blamed for Indianisation of the west.

In a Hollywood movie Tom Cruise would have a father settled in riches of Mumbai. He would have taken the son to US to get him marry a white girl. A son hell bent on marrying some Priya from Chandigarh. How the Hollywood would have sung, “Come, it’s time to go back”. No Pankaj Udaas, but a certain Snoop Dog would have sung, “A letter from my country” and the American Diaspora would have wept the Nehru Centre.

Mr. Abe would be Shree Abe, or let’s go a step ahead, would have changed his name to Abhimanyu, just to fit in. Roger would have walked into a back office in the heart of London in Kurta Pajama and HR would have coached in how to wear a Pajama with perfect crease. There would have been Chai/Lassi/Thandai machines in the breakouts with a few Charpai thrown in to relax.

The VadaPao/Chola Bhatura joints in NY/London would be decorated with diya’s on Diwali’s eve and people would be discussing, Ram and Sita and the history. People in Italy would protest forceful conversion to Hinduism funded by RSS and would deliberate enacting anti-conversion laws.

Restaurants would be designed so as people would be seated on the floor and waiters serving them food. World economy would be centered in Mumbai with New Delhi bombing countries in South America for their religious extremism and their getting close to develop Nuclear weapon.

I am already ROFL. The potential to explore on this topic is immense but I would excuse myself now lest I think some more and go berserk.

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Written by arpitgarg

December 26, 2012 at 2:39 pm

Sunny Leone and Swadeshi

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“The way characters like Sunny Leone are being celebrated and thrust upon us socially, incidents like this were just waiting to happen”, quipped a lady friend of mine, seemingly annoyed with what has happened in Karnataka Assembly.

The literati of India has always supported making pornography legal, citing bans to be signs of cultural repression aka Taliban. The people who go lengths as to how porn is an art and as to why restrictions surrounding it must go, fall short of answering one question, “Do they share same views with respect to a porn star”.

Will they encourage their children to take up this profession, the way they would encourage them to become say a cricketer or a film star? We don’t even have to wait for an answer, given the uncomfortable and insulted look on their faces.

Sunny Leone is admittedly the first famous and celebrated porn star in India. Still she is someone we would want to enjoy, not emulate as a role model.

We would like the porn stars to be some aliens, existing just in the movies and not in the society. Would we rent out our house to a known porn star? Would we share social space with him/her. Accepting adult video and accepting the people working in them has to go together. It can’t be a one way race.

It is also a reality that most of the young kids have easy exposure to these movies via internet. So what’s the way forward? Be it Khajuraho, Be it Lingam pooja, be it Kamasutra, be it Exploding population, sexuality is inherent in our religion and society. But somehow we lost race to the West in capitalizing and making money from it.

I would suggest that instead of letting Western adult movie industry thrive on Indian viewers, it would be better if our own people benefit from it. Go Swadeshi!

Written by arpitgarg

February 12, 2012 at 2:44 am

The IPL Team that wasn’t

with 5 comments

IPL auctions, held recently grabbed everyone’s attention. With millions of dollars floating around, it turned out to be a landmark event. Not everyone seemed happy though. Some politicians were enraged by the amount of wealth at display. “It’s pathetic”, said one. Its gross” said another.  “Why were we left out from earning the moolah. It’s wrong”. “Let’s form a team and enter the IPL. Let’s rename it the Indian Political League”, came one suggestion. “Yes, let’s do it”, they gave a Spartan cry. We will show who the real boss is when it comes to earning monies.

“From next time on Mr. A. Raja will be the auctioneer given his huge experience with 2G auctions”, they passed a resolution. “All those who want to bid for someone at a cheaper cost, pay me 20%, I will bring down the hammer. I am the 1st, 2nd and the third umpire”, Raja promised. Point well taken!

The team was called, “Indian Commoners”, given the “aam aadmi” thing is in vogue. The team is as below.

1. Suresh Kalmadi: The way he accumulates money, he can accumulate lots of runs. His tendency to generate money out of nowhere is seen as his ability to get wickets out of nowhere. He is a genuine all rounder. He can even keep the umpires happy, if you know what I mean. He never hogs the limelight. Always owes it to teamwork.

Kalmadi 1 Kalmadi 2

Kalmadi 3 Kalmadi 4

2. Sharad Pawar: The Maratha pride. He is a bit lethargic in field. Takes time to move; needs a little push sometimes. But with him on the side, the team can make records, given his habit to make records of prices of onion and sugar. He does not care much about win or a loss. Cool as a cucumber. After all he is not a jyotishi.

Pawar 1 Pawar 2

Pawar 3 Pawar 4

3. RR Patil: A master planner. Sometimes caught off guard, when the opposite team strikes. To him even a huge loss does not matter. After all such small things happen. He is like a phoenix, rise from the ashes. The only thing that goes against him is his evident dislike for cheer leaders.

Patil 1 Patil 2

Patil 5 Patil 3 Patil 4

4. Mamata Banerjee: Bound to appeal a lot on the ground. Ei No Cholbe, Ei no Cholbe. Will sit on hunger strike if umpire does no give favorable decisions. Batting and Bowling will be on track with her in the team, well almost.

Mamta 1 Mamta 2

Mamta 4 Mamta 3

5. Sheila Dixit: Hell of a worker. Can make 200 in just 2 over’s when time comes. Though old age affects her memory a bit and she keeps forgetting things, considered a long innings player. Is well regarded for her mystic youth.

Sheila 1 Sheila 2 Sheila 3

6. B. S. Yeddyurappa: With him, we will have our grounds to practice and play on. Whatever pitch/land/conditions we want to practice on, he will grab it and will make it available for us. Also he will cry when caught, so umpire will not give him out. He likes to keep himself in shape too. He respects the coach a lot.

Yed 1 Yed 2

Yed 3 Yed 4

7. M. K Alagiri (Karunanidhi’s son): He will hardly be present during the match but during the pre and post ceremonies, he will be there to complain that he is never given a chance to perform. Such spirit!

Ala 1 Ala 2 Ala 3

8. Nitin Gadkari: Will sit on the opposition and kill them. He is dealer and so is easy to deal with. Will keep asking for a wicket from the umpire. He will not let the match go on and may do a walkout, till his request is acceded to. His motto is “Eat and let Eat”, and eats up the wickets of the opposite team.

Gad 1 Gad 2

Gad 3 Gad 4

9. Narendra Modi: Tried his hand at umpiring. Took no decision and the two teams came to blows. Want to enter this time round as the player. The team is bound to win, err…only the home matches perhaps.

Modi 1 Modi 2

Modi 3 Modi 4

10. Rahul Gandhi: Likes to play test matches, slow and in whites. So that might be show-stopper. But has a fan following among elite youths (where the money is), so might be able to bring in sponsors. Also is young. Invest in future.

Rahul 1 Rahul 2

Rahul 3 Rahul 4

11. Manish Tiwari: His team is the reigning champion and he never misses a chance to be smug about it. He will murder anyone who says anything against his team. Such is his loyalty. Don’t need to know the context. All he knows is defense. He is the Wall. He can take on one, two or even three bowlers at the same time.

Manish 1 Manish 2

Manish 3 Manish 4

12. Jagan Reddy (12th man): He is a good fielder and practices a lot. Be it ‘Odarpu Yatra’. He has a lot of female fan following too. Charming! The flip side is that he will not play unless made the Captain. He will make a new team from the breakaway players if he is refused the Captain cap.

Jagan 1 Jagan 2 Jagan 3

13. Sourav Ganguly: Pissed at his exclusion in the IPL, he gave his name for Indian Commoners. Unsold here too. Left has told they will find a role for him and no team in India is possible without him.

Sourav 1 Sourav 2 Sourav 3

Racism: Reverse and Progressive

with 2 comments

A lot has kept us busy as a nation last couple of weeks. CWG, Mohali win and most recently some serious allegations of racism against a few officials from down under.

If I am right, Ministry of External Affairs, India summoned High Commissioners of respective countries and lodged protests. Last I heard the said individuals either resigned or were ousted and rightly so. Such behavior has no place in civilized societies.

Okay, tell me one thing. Has racism sprung up all of a sudden during recent times? The answer would be a no. Racism is a perception which a society or a race developes about contemporary society or race overtime. It’s just that with the advent of Globalization, these days we get to know of it real time. Earlier Lord Ganesha on Chappals was mere fashion for a society that doesn’t know anything about him, Today it is offensive.

Tell me frankly, how many of us think Bhajji did indeed utter “Maa Ki” and not the racist slur. Why then were we as a nation hell bent on seeing Bhajji free of the allegations? Now come ‘on, it had nothing to do with lack of evidence or anything thereof. If such had been the case then all our politicians were saints.

To be frank it’s about who is leveling the allegations. Had the opposite team been Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, West Indies or for that matter South Africa, we as a nation might not have backed our player to that extent. Why? Coz we have seen long periods of unabashed Aussie sledging as a reminder of the days of the Raj perhaps.

When a society which has perception of being shamelessly racist, throws up allegations of such sort, it seems rubbing salt in the wound. You gotta handle what you dish out. Right?

But what worries me more is a developing phenomenon, Reverse Racism. In our part of world racism is generally related to prejudice that developed white nations have against us about them being superior. The aspect of racism under which emerging societies like us berate, taunt or create a certain perception about developed nations is what I call Reverse Racism.

When white girls are considered nothing but free meat. Whole society is said to lack values. If it’s not racism, what is it? I was shocked to see in a recent episode of Bigg Boss, a dozen white models in skimpy dresses made to dance with the ousted contestant. Just as his inaam. When the whole crowd enjoys it, it’s not just racism, it’s sadness.

Equally frightening is Progressive Racism. Progressive racism is when slightly more developed race is prejudiced against slightly lesser developed race.

When an African student in Delhi University is called Kaalu. A person from the same region is called Habshi on national TV. When CWG teams from African countries are given step motherly treatment. On daily basis do we see jokes being made on color of skin on TV. “Abey door hat, tu rang chodta hai”. Sab log fair and lovely lagate hain, yeh cherry blossom lagata hai. Abe langoor ke bhai.

I am not trying to be apologetic here, I hate that frankly. But if such progressive and reverse racism continues in our society, we too would lose our moral right to complain. We would just be another hypocrite in the bunch. Do we really want that? It’s bit scary to answer, isn’t it?

Religion, War and Inertia

with 4 comments

I have always been told that Hinduism is a tolerant religion. Over the centuries various religions branched out of Hinduism as per the changing times and beliefs. Never was it considered a blasphemy towards classic Hinduism. I have always heard, contrary to the perception of the West, Islam is a peaceful religion. That jihad is not a war but ones struggle to better the self and the society, fighting injustice and oppression. I have always been taught how liberal Christianity is. Just look at liberal society of the West. It follows from the religion. Christianity has always worked for the betterment of the world at large. The missions around the world are a clear example of that.

But when I stop believing and start perceiving then the trouble begins.

I have seen Babri demolition, ’92 riots that left a long lasting fear of police in me (anti-riot). I was just six at that time and the impression left was huge. Terrorism in the name of Islam has been going on in Kashmir from as long as I remember. The ISI and its insidious ways and the backing of considerable chunk of the Islamic world to that (directly or indirectly). I have seen 9/11 by who they called a religious fanatic. I have seen Leaders of the West declaring their war on Afghanistan and Iraq as a war by God. I have seen images from Abu Ghraib and the twisted humanity.

I believe religion is nothing more than a set of beliefs formulated by people to give meaning to the life. It’s one of the conclusions that humans reached to the pressing question of “Why we are here?” Religion was never formulated to spread violence. But considering the bloodshed across religions, one begs to differ. So is it the religion or the inherent nature of Homo sapiens at fault? Quite huge a quest for me to begin.

One common trait I find across the paradigm is, “The older the religion gets, more rigid the followers become”. One simple solution would be to change the religion altogether before it gets too old to harm us. We all would agree it’s not so simple. Why? The answer lies in the Newton’s second law of motion. Inertia, the resistance to change. Inertia is inside all of us. Not only do we not want to change but create hurdles in the path of people who do.

Recently what we saw in the case of Nasreen and Hussain was resistance by Muslims and Hindus alike. Majority of Hindus felt offended by nude images of deities and same goes for Muslims by radical writings. What brings them together is inertia. We don’t like to deviate from the set of thinking that have been hardcoded into us.

Newton discovered inertia but he felt short of finding a cure to it. We have to find a cure. Till then we will see a lot more wars in the name of religion. An apple needs to fall on someone’s head soon!.

Slumdog: An air of million criticism

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A lot has been written and discussed about Slumdog Millionaire. Much like the Obama wave it seems engulfing us all.

From the day it was nominated for the Golden Globe there have been extreme views. So much so that a war seems waged between the for and the against. The criticism more or less seems to follow two schools of thought discussed below.

First one rues the exploitation of poor India for money by the west. More like the East India Company reloaded. Westerners have been accused to revel at the mockery of Indian poverty. As Arindam Chaudhary writes, “Slumdog is a phony poseur that has been made only to mock India for the viewing pleasure of the First World”. The naked poverty of India might be self pleasing to the people of the West, given the time of depression. According to Amitabh Bacchan such underbellies do exist even in the developed nations. This is just a Western production and hence the recognition. These people have launched an offense against the team of the movie, western media and finally the whole of the western world.

The other school of thought is pretty much the same as far as the murky portrayal of Mumbai is concerned. The difference lies in how they are affected. People are worried about the answers they would need to give and ridicule they would be subjected to when they travel abroad the next time. As Preity Zinta says, “Now for the next 10 years of my life every time I travel abroad, I will be told, Oh, you live in Mumbai…where they gouge out eyes in the slums.”

One point missing here is, Does anybody care about the poverty and feel for the slum dwellers? Or it’s just the poverty in limelight which is itching the eyes. At first the movie was applauded. Then the criticism followed. Then there was criticism of the people criticizing the movie. “Isn’t that (poverty and slums) a reality”, says Shahrukh Khan. It would not be long when there would be people who would criticize the people criticizing who criticized the movie. Now, how much of criticism would that be!

Written by arpitgarg

January 28, 2009 at 12:44 pm

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