Sunday 24 June 2007

Touching!!!!!!!!!

This is the about a real incident.It's about the way the Priyadarshini Mattoo case was handled.It has been written by the person who was responsible for triggering the public agitation and giving it the coverage it deserved which ultimatley led to JUSTICE.Although this a matter which might have gone a little stale and nothing much has happened since then to convince the existence of the court for JUSTICE TO ALL,yet I stumbled upon this mail while going through all the folders and after I read it ,I felt just as I had after reading it for the first time.I felt that sharing it with everybody through my blog would be the best way to do so.Here it is.


"Justice For Priyadarshini"… My experiences with the fight against injustice!
- Aditya Raj Kaul

Initiator, Justice 4 Priyadarshini
"Priyadarshini Mattoo" was the name that used to haunt me every now and then a few years back. I had heard and read a lot about this case, but never did I actually bother to see what had happened in the case and its current position. The picture in my mind was hazy.

It was in February this year that Jessica Lall case was in the headlines, because of the acquittal of all the accused in the case. This verdict gave me a tremendous shock. I could never believe my eyes watching the criminals going scot free just because of the lack in investigation. That was the time when I realized that now is the time for the country's youth to take charge. I used the best weapon at my end; which was writing. I wrote to editors of various newspapers, followed by discussions on this case in various youth forums and groups. I could not believe that a public outcry in this case immediately helped as the Delhi High Court took a sue motto notice. It had given me a hope, that we are united against injustice.

During this time, another case, which I had earlier as well read about, caught my attention. It was the Priyadarshini Mattoo Case. Media was trying its best to highlight it as far as it could, but nothing really was coming out. My 12th board examinations were on but my mind was as well following this case.

Priyadrshini Mattoo Case: A Brief History

Priyadarshini was brutally raped and murdered on 23rd January 1996 in broad daylight in a posh South Delhi locality by his senior at the Law Faculty, Delhi University, Santosh Kumar Singh. The accused was son of a senior IPS officer.

In the verdict given by Additional Sessions Judge on 3rd December 1999, Justice G.P. Thareja said, " Though I know he is the man who committed the crime, I acquit him giving him the benefit of doubt."

The judge also went on record saying, " The CBI in the matter of DNA evidence has not acted fairly. It tampered with the evidence of clothes of the deceased and also the blood sample of the accused. It even fabricated the documentary evidence and also the Malkhana Register of the CBI as is clear from the discrepancies."

The CBI filed its appeal challenging the courts verdict in the Delhi High Court in 2000, since then 7 years have passed without a single hearing of the case. It was a shame for the Indian Judiciary.

Online Campaign Begins

On March 22nd this year when I read an article of Mr. C.L. Mattoo, Priyadarshini's father, in a national daily, it sent shivers down my spine. My heart cried at the agony of the father, a father who had been fighting; for more than 10 years to get justice. I was determined to do something, which could still give some courage to him to fight this battle. Finally, on that very day I decided to start an online signature campaign, which had a petition addressed to the Honourable President of India and Chief Justice of India asking for retrial and reinvestigation in this case.

I had found a new modern way for people to speak against injustice and discrimination. I was thrilled to get an overwhelming response from people across the world; thousands of signatures were collected, my inbox was filled with mails and at every nook and corner people were discussing about this very case. It was towards the end of my board examination in March when NDTV contacted me for a story on my petition. The story was telecasted the next day. Later that day, NDTV asked me to come for a very special live panel discussion. I was asked for my opinion and what motivated me to start this campaign. I clearly remember the last question by the anchor Nidhi Razdan: Are u hopeful that justice will be done in the Mattoo Case? After a brief gap…. I replied "No, not at this moment"

Later, another channel CNN-IBN covered a story on my petition, and I was again invited for the evening live panel discussion with Rajdeep Sardesai on the `Face The Nation'. It was a bit similar experience.

Our Team : "Justice For Priyadarshini"

Even though the case was on and off the media's attention, not much was happening on the ground. But I decided to take this forward upon request from all my friends and others. Many youth contacted me from around the world, mostly from India. After brief research of two months in this case me and my friends decided to form a group of volunteers who were determined to work for the cause. This led to the formation of "Justice For Priyadarshini", which soon became our campaign name.

A friend from USA who was actively involved with me in this group introduced me to his sister a journalist working in Delhi with one of the top media houses who was interested to work for this cause. In our first meeting, we decided to meet Mr. C.L. Mattoo, Priyadarshini's father.

It was on May 4th that our small group comprising of me, that journalist friend and another of her friend, took the courage to meet Priyadarshini's father. On the one hand my heart and mind was involved with the anti-reservation protests, but my soul was stuck with justice for Priyadarshini. This was the day when President of India invited me and my group for talks on reservations.

It was hard for us to face a father who had completely lost the courage to move on. As we entered his room, he greeted us and directed us to make ourselves comfortable. After the introduction, he told me that there is a young boy who has just finished his 12th and had started a campaign for this case. He asked us to contact him. I was surprised as he was referring to me. The journalist friend sitting with me introduced me as that very boy who had started that petition. The moment he heard this he stood up and hugged me, he thanked me for unknowingly helping him. I could see drops of tears coming out his eyes. I could feel my heart crying, I was motion less. I did not know what to say. I replied that it was my duty to raise my voice being an Indian citizen. Though I wanted to say more, I stopped. At the end of the meeting he asked me to continue my efforts, I assured him that day, that I will do whatever I can in my capacity to get justice. The journalist girl with me was equally enthusiastic about this case. She decided to study the case in detail and then work on it technically. She was with me in this campaign at each and every step. I felt Mr. Mattoo was now somewhat hopeful of justice being done as the youth had taken charge.

I believe this was the first day of our campaign and gradually more people started to volunteer for the cause. We decided to have a protest march on 23rd of July, which was Priyadarshini's 34th birth anniversary.

We started working hard towards our goal, organising door-to-door campaigns, meeting various groups and individuals for support became a regular affair. In a short span of time, more than 25 Delhi based civil society groups, NGO's, women's bodies, students groups etc. pledged their support for this cause. One of the first groups to lend a helping hand was Delhi University based students neutral group United Students, who had started the anti-reservation campaign in the country. They mobilized nearly each and every college in the campus area by distributing pamphlets, sticking posters, organising corner meetings etc. Even the faculty and students of the Law Faculty, Delhi University where Priyadarshini used to study, joined this movement. Many other organizations like Jagori, People's Action and Human Rights Law Network just to name a few raised their voice for this cause.

Just days before the protest Mr. C.L. Mattoo decided to visit Delhi to support the group and raise this issue on a larger scale in front of the media. We organized a joint press conference, which strongly demanded an "immediate reinvestigation and retrial within a stipulated timeframe". This conference became the headlines next day. In the meantime many electronic, print and radio media organizations extended their support to the cause.

The Protest that Shook the Country

Finally, came the day that we were awaiting, it was 23rd July. The entire group was nervous, we had spent the previous night planning strategies, discussing various other things and completing last minute work for the protest. As we moved to the protest site, India Gate, a few hours before the protest, we got a message that our venue was shifted to Jantar Mantar due to some last minute security concerns. It was a very hard decision to change the venue; we hardly had any option, other then to follow the advice of the Police.

We immediately decided to plant our volunteers on different corners of India Gate to direct people towards the changed venue. I had never expected this last minute change, this was a shock, but we had to tackle it and make our rally a great success.

I checked the time in my wristwatch, it showed 4:30 pm, the scheduled time for our protest to start. I took a round of Jantar Mantar. I tried to figure the exact number of people present. The figure was shocking; there were hardly 25 people with 30 journalists standing and staring at this small crowd. I had anticipated a much larger figure. I was disheartened.

After a few minutes, I jumped with excitement when I got a call from a volunteer standing at India Gate, he told me to be prepared, hundreds of people had already landed at India Gate and were now directed towards Jantar Mantar. My elation knew no bounds when I saw countless number of cars and other vehicles coming from the Janpath side road towards Jantar Mantar. I was re-energised.

Media swung into action. The electronic media started their OB vans, with live coverage as the protest began. Photographers struggled to get space. Entire Jantar Mantar was full of people. Soon after, many personalities who had pledged their support for the cause landed at the venue, it included actors Anupam Kher, Roshan Seth and M.K. Raina, politician and activist Manika Gandhi and film director Ashok Pandit. Even Neelam Katara, mother of the murdered Nitish Katara, who has been also fighting for justice, joined us in the rally.

The air reverberated with slogans like, "We Want Justice" and "Justice Delayed is Justice Denied". The depth in that one united voice from the crowd touched my strings of my heart. It was totally different atmosphere, a new experience for me.

CBI Action

The very next day CBI filed an early hearing petition in the High Court due to immense public and media pressure. The High Court heard the case on August 30th and set it for regular hearing on daily basis.

The case continued for a month, around 14 hearings and finally the judgement came on October 17th 2006


The entire country was eagerly awaiting the Judgement which was scheduled to come in the afternoon on 17th of October 2006. I was sitting in the Delhi High Court, praying in my heart. The criminal, Santosh Kumar Singh was sitting in the next row in front. The judges entered the court at about 2:15 pm, Justice Sondhi announced the verdict before the jampacked court in complete silence. The Judge said, "From an overall analysis of circumstances that have been discussed above and held to have been proved beyond any doubt by unimpeachable evidence, we are of the view that those circumstances form a chain so complete which leads us to the only conclusion that it is the respondent, Santosh Kumar Singh, who had committed rape upon the deceased and then murdered her."

Immediately, after this statement I could see Santosh's face turning pale and his lawyers as if mourning in grief. The Judge continued, " The circumstantial evidence in the case is absolutely inconsistent and incompatible with the innocence of the respondent. There is no circumstance brought on record by the respondent suggesting his innocence or the possibility of anyone else having committed the ghastly acts. The trial court, however quite amazingly, after holding almost all the crucial circumstances in favour of the prosecution, has ordered unmerited acquittal of the respondent by taking a perverse approach in the matter. By acquitting the respondent despite being convinced that there was no doubt in the prosecution case (at least for the affence of murder) the trial court has mauled justice, its decision has shocked the conscience of this court."

I took a deep breath and a sense of relief…finally truth had won and justice had been done. Santosh Kumar Singh, the cruel murderer had been convicted and immediately arrested by the CBI. Media inside the court rushed out of the court, to cover the event live and first. This case was historic in many ways.To capture the historic event; it was history in the making right in front of everyone's eyes.

This case will set a precedent for all similar future cases. But the delay in this verdict is a cause of concern. Judiciary needs to set a stipulated time-frame for all extra special cases of murder, rape and national security etc. The Judicial process in India is very time consuming, and no one is sure of light at the end of the tunnel. Judiciary also needs to be overhauled in order to expeditiously deliver justice.It is unfortunate that the investigating agencies be it the Police or the top most CBI, have been found lacking in discharging their duties. Its high time that they get awakened from their deep slumber to discharge their duties in a systematic manner.

Facing The Mattoos

The next day i.e. 18th October 2006, early in the morning I decided to gather some strength and call up Mattoo uncle and aunty. It was hard to face them. But I decided to give them a ring. When I called the voice at the other end told me that uncle was downstairs and asked me to call back after 5 minutes. But soon after my mobile rang, it was Shri Chaman Lal Mattoo...

As soon as I heard Mr. Mattoo's voice, my heart started pounding; it felt as if the world had shrunk on me and the time had stopped. Mr. Mattoo was deeply appreciative of the efforts of each and every individual, organization and, in particular, media. It was hard for both of us to weave our emotions into words. Mattoo uncle thanked me and told me to convey the same to our entire team. He said that he was very eager to talk to me after the verdict but failed establishing contact with me.

There was a lady behind who was insisting on speaking with me. Uncle handed over the phone to her, she was Rageshwariji (Priyadarshini's mother)...Very emotionally she thanked me like anything, more than that she blessed me and the whole group. I'm unable to translate her Kashmiri ex-pressions... I was touched...I could feel it very much that she was no doubt in pain of losing her dear child, but at the same time there was some sort of satisfaction and relief to her.

I could feel a bruised, yet relieved, heart pouring all the love and affection in the world on me. There's only so much a man can take. Tears flowing down and heart screaming I wanted to console her and convey her that it was their strong conviction that helped the case most but I couldn't utter a word....

Our Verdict
We at "Justice For Priyadarshini" firmly believe that the Priyadarshini Mattoo case fits into the category of "rarest of the rare" and hence the guilty should be awarded the death penalty.


Though there are philosophical reasons for being against death penalty, I think death penalty should be struck upon the culprit so that spoilt brats of power know that they are not above the law. It will set precedence and act as a deterrent.

All I can add to this is,I salute to thee,the initiator and all the people who actively stood up in favour of justice.I'm proud of all youngsters,me falling into the same category,as well as relieved that there is at least one soul that rests in peace!

Saturday 23 June 2007

Shame on you POLITICIANS

I can't even start to express the amount of regret I feel to see Pratibha Patil taking over the reins of the position with the highest authority,not because I am in some way, predisposed against her as the President of my country,but because the one whom she replaces has the capability and the intellect to be there for atleast five more years.Kalam has become the victim of shameful politics and it is indeed a painful sight to see such a deserving person step down from his post.

Congress has played a very good political game,dividing NDA by choosing a Maharashtrian, thus obtaining the support of Shivsena.I suppose it was the birth plan of Mrs.Sonia Gandhi!Choosing a woman,thus obtaining support of feminist groups as well as ensuring sympathy votes and wooing the female population of the Parliament.Pathetic!They have chosen a person who they think will be indebted to them for the post and will be merely a rubber stuffed doll.If I remember clearly,Congress hadn't supported Kalam the first time and at that time also, they had introduced a woman candidate!Choosing someone with a clean track record, so that no objections could be raised to that regard.Choosing someone whom I can only suppose to have done something favourable to some minority group,given the fact that the Left groups are all ready to support her.About a clean track record,well, she's been accused of providing refuge to her brother who's an alleged murderer, but seeing that the media is not giving it enough coverage,indeed if I may venture to say is not giving it the deserved coverage,so that it is not going to reach too many ears!I am yet to hear any kind of clarification on that.I do not want a tainted personality sitting at the highest position of my country.I'd rather any day,have a scientist,a non-politician who has atleast done something for the country,even if on the face of it, it's been limited to being a source of inspiration for young kids!

Kalam has decided not to contest presidential polls,for he could not bear to see the way the politics was underplay.It is indeed a matter of great shame for the country, but it wouldn't really be the first time the country has failed to provide the deserved honour to the deserving!On one hand, we have Congress which is still living in the Gandhian era,earning votes using the name of Gandhi,Nehru,Indira,Sanjay,Rajiv and now we have Rahul!I wonder how many people are really aware of the fact that the surname of these people stemmed from nothing else but 'vote ki rajniti'!On the other,we have BJP, correct in essentials, but containing too many ingredients!RSS,Shivsena and VHP,namely.One going ga-ga over Hinduism,the other over Maharashtra and Maharashtrians!Hmph!And the rest of the people are engaged in dividing junta on the basis of caste,category,religion,region,race,sex.......Kuch nahi choda hai distinction karne ke liye!

I really wonder when this country is going to get sensible leaders.Not till we get some sensible and responsible voters,I think!And that is going to take decades seeing the present level of awareness and education among the public.It really grieves my heart to see this kind of a situation prevailing in the coutry I'm calling my own.

I'm about to turn 18 in a few months, which gives me the right to vote,but I don't want to vote for any candidate.I'm certain that each time I can't find a suitable candidate,I'm going to seek permission to be excused from voting.Very few people are aware of the existence of this kind of this provision,and I'm going to try and quote the whole article in a few days,if I can.I'm certain I've got it stored with me somewhere.

In the meanwhile,I can't help but grieve over the loss of this nation,all because of a bunch of idiot,stupid politicians!!!!

Update:-Oh my God!If I had any doubt about the candidature of Pratibha Patil as the President of my country,they've all faded now!Now, I'm damn sure I DON'T want to see her as the President of my country.Don't we deal with enough superstitions by the unlearned folk that we need a super superstitious President now?TOI reports about her "divine" inclination that preinformed her about the upcoming incidents in her life.

"I had a pleasant experience," Patil recounted to a TV channel about her recent meeting with the head of the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University, Hridaymohini, popularly known as 'Dadiji'. "Dadiji ke shareer mein baba aye...," she said, referring to Dada Lekhraj, who founded the Brahmakumari sect. Lekhraj died in 1969.

To read the whole article, go to

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Pratibha_believes_in_spirits/articleshow/2152156.cms

P.S. Can she quit her pallu on her head for God's sake!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday 21 June 2007

Snip Snip Snip SNip SNIp SNIP

OK,if you are wondering what the hell is this,it's nothing.I'm just trying to say that I got a hair cut yesterday evening.But wait!there's more to it.But this is all girlie stuff!Guys,you have an option of quitting now!

I'm really sick and tired of layer cut now.But invariably, every hair-setter I meet looks at my face(which I confess is round) and says "Ma'am, layer cut is what is going to suit you". Hmph!!!!!!!From Touch n Glow to three different outlets of Belleza, I've tried all and I am yet to get a different reply.Earlier this year at Touch n Glow,when I said, I'd like to have some curl and bounce in my hair,I was immediately given the option of getting them curled.Since I wanted something new,I just said yes,but I immediately regretted.Although it did look nice on me, yet it was too baby doll typo,not what I wanted.The hair stylist told me they'd go down after some time and sure enough!by the time my didi's engagement party started,all the curls were down. Complete fiasco!!!!!!!!

All I'll say is, if somebody can pleeeease give a suggestion on what other kind of style can suit on me,just put your id in the comment and I'll send you a pic of mine.

I'm quite desperate,but I guess I'll have to wait a few months to try it out.I just got an already belated layer cut yesterday.The only positive being,I asked him to cut it short and it's shoulder length now.Better!I was getting quite sick of long hair!

P.S. Gender bender:Has anybody noticed that most of the hair dressers tend to be male?Ok,I know every guy who started reading it MUST have finished it. ;)

Wednesday 20 June 2007

Books Booooooks Booooooooooooooks!!!!!!!!!!! II

Here's second of the lot!


OK, this is not about a specific book, it's about a series of books by the same author, not in continuation with each other.Two of these are highly recommended by loads of people and one of them has been converted to a highly controversial movie.The author I'm talking about is Dan Brown and the two most famous books are "Angels and Demons" and "The Da Vinci Code",other good ones that I've read being "Digital Fortress" and "Deception Point".As far as I can perceive from his website http://www.danbrown.com/ he's written only four books up to date and he's working on the fifth,a sequel to "The Da Vinci Code".I can't say I'm going to be too excited about it and at the same time, if I can lay my hands on it,I'm not really gonna stop!Confusing?Let me explain. But here's a warning first, if you haven't read any of these and are planning to, there're potential spoilers ahead.

We shall basically leave out "The Da Vinci Code" from our discussion,the reason being,I've read it just once,about 2 years back and I can't find my copy now.I think one of my 'friends' had borrowed it!!!(I've really learnt these lessons the hard way.Maybe that's why I think 10 times before lending a book to somebody.)

So anyway, the attractive features of Dan Brown's books are the protagonists,invariably, a man and a woman, *groan* who more often that not,end up together.These books are like Bible to techno-savvy people.There are so many high tech instruments,technologies and stuff, that you can't possibly believe their existence.I'm still dazed whenever I read any of his books and wonder if it's really possible.His books travel all across the globe.Either he himself is a travelling bug, or if he's got his information from somewhere, it's damn accurate!It makes you want to go and be a travelling bug yourself.It makes you want to go and see it yourself and most importantly,his books always concern big parties.White House,Prez of US,the secret NSA for decrypting codes, dealing with terrorists,the NRA similar to NASA but more of national security organisation rather than educative!Big question,Existing or not?Oh well........dunno.....I still wonder about all those paintings in Da Vinci Code.I'd like to see them myself someday!

Ok, downslides now!These books get really synchronous with each other.In every book,except probably Da Vinci Code,things start as prettty big,then you have a snag and you realise it's nothing except a bundle of lies.And oh, the 'controller' is always the bigwig,best interests at heart, yet fails and does not hesitate to kill people.The least suspected is always the culprit, something common to Perry Mason books by Earl Stanley Gardner.But I love the way Dan Brown manages to keep up the curiosity.Right upto the end, you can't guess the culprit and it hits you in the face like a bucket of icy cold water,of course,not the case if you've read my spoilers first or read three books already and are smart enough to make the connections.

Whatever,I'll still have to say, this guy does his research work really well,which is more than I can say for a lot of authors!!!!!!!!!

Saturday 16 June 2007

Books Booooooks Booooooooooooooks!!!!!!!!!!!

Aw right,as promised,here is the first review.


This is about a book titled "What should I do with my Life" by Po Bronson.In case you are thinking that it is a book by a high tech professional or an educatonalist ,giving you the details about the various careers that you can take up in your life, think again!!!For this is not that kinda book,it is a book that is based on real life stories and what makes it different is not that it's a true story(for almost every book or part of it is inspired by some real life incident), but the fact that it a book which narrates the experiences of those who decided to go where their heart(call it conscience, if you like)pointed out, rather than being a part of a rat race.Although it's quite an old book,yet it seems absolutely significant in the present day scenario, atleast in India.

It is a book that describes the trauma that people went through and the fact that the book is not really about all winners helps!This is a compilation of the stories that unravelled through interviews by the author and the author's own story nicely blended in the book speaks volumes about the fact that he himself believes what he describes in the books.

There are people who abandon high-tech perky jobs simply because you have just one life to live and you can't be wasting it thinking "I'll do what I want to tomorrow,let me first do what I have to."This is pretty much along the lines of my thinking.Lots of people there felt that it would be a good idea to first earn a lot of money and then use it to chase your dreams.I myself had that notion which in most cases proves out to be woefully wrong.

The author adds a disclaimer saying that it is not a self help book,rather a narration of the experiences of a few who put the question to themselves and the answers they got.I think he's quite right!No where did the book ever signify how the question would get answered if you put it to yourself,yourself being any individual.Po says putting the question to yourself is the first step of trying to put yourself out of the box,something like, out of the ordinary,because not everyone wants to have the question answered.A lot of people are quite comfortable with the way they are and don't wish to change.*sigh*I think I've taken the first step.(Not because I read the book!It's actually the other way round.)I've started questioning myself over every task,asking myself if I really want to do it.

All in all, this book is not for everyone,for example,the likes of my brother.He just gave a fleeting look at it and when I questioned if he'd like to read it,he simply replied that it was "high level" stuff and he'd read it later.For all of you out there, all that I'll say is please decide for yourself before buying the book.It costs a fortune(Rs.438.00)Not all that costly,but worthless if you don't like the theme of the book itself.The best place to find out?

This: www.pobronson.com

There are some sample stories(about ten of them) which you can read and decide if the book's worth for you or not.This'll prove out to be a repitition later if you buy the book,but it's worth it if you like the concept.

So long,hope you enjoy the book!!!!!!!!! ;)

Saturday 9 June 2007

Journey through the pages!

So what is this?words vs screens?print vs electronic?book vs ebook?encycloedia vs CD or net?

A very deep question with equally deep answers.A child today, would anyday, like to play with electronic devices,rather than with live counterparts.Or in a number of cases, is forced to.But we shall keep our discussion limited to that about reading books,and the importance it still holds today,even with the present circumstances.Being a person avidly enjoying both,I choose to strike a balance.So then, what prompted me to write this stuff?

It took a very nice article(not exactly an article,a real life instance) on a blog which can be reached at www.youthcurry.blogspot.com.

So how was it that I got hooked to books?I think it was loneliness that first prompted me to go crazy about books.I mean,I enjoyed reading even as a youngster(or so is evident from each one of my kindergarten report cards) but it was the lonely evenings that made me do a beeline for books.All my friends in the building were busy with their tuitions in their evenings, so I had little option beyond getting bored.But when I did take to books,I did it in a very big way.I visited the school library(it's still the most cherished spot of my memories) almost everyday to borrow a new book.I remember particularly enjoying Enid Blyton stuff(still do, for that matter.It still makes more sense to me than 'To kill a Mocking Bird' by Harper Lee).Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys were other favourites.But among the two,Nancy Drew always won,which I think can be attributed to a large extent to gender bias.And I don't seem to be the only one.After all,I still remember my brother getting mostly Hardy Boys!And before that, there had obviously been fairy tale stories,princes,pricesses,fairies,pixies,elfs,................every thing a child's innocent and honest mind usually is attracted to.

Then came along Roald Dahl!I haven't read too many of his works,and they weren't in the library till there was some competition based on his books,in which a large number of students wished to participate.I liked the way he wrote,although I never participated in the competition.
Then came along Ruskin Bond,again thanks to the same competition in another year.This time I did participate,but being a person reading simply for pleasure, more than for remebering each and every detail, the result was well predictable.

Then I got hooked to works by Agatha Christie,Earl Stanley Gardner and others doing detective stories.Oddly enough,I never found Sherlock Holmes interesting enough!It felt just tooooooo out of the blue,something you just could not participate in, but forced to retreat to the sidelines.In the end, it made the reader feel extremely humbled.I still enjoy all these works,and whenever I can,I'm glad to be able to get my hands on every good book.

Among other favourite titles thatI enjoy are "The Only Alien On the Planet" by Kristen Randle.I think I have to be lucky to place my hands on it because when I ran a search for other books by the same author,I discovered that she hadn't written many and had done so quite long ago.'Tis a very very sweet story about a girl aged 17 and the life she led with all the people who were a part of it.The story is very different,very touching and oh,so sweet!Get your hands on it as soon as you can!Then there is "The Count of Monte Cristo(unabbraiged)".Set against the French backdrop,it is a stunning tale of rise from near death."What Katy Did" and other two succeeding titles also caught my attention and the purity of it stared from the very depth of the book.

There are lots and lots of titles of which I hope to be able to provide reviews soon.

But I think,the biggest addiction is easily guessable,yes, the most popular book the world has today,Harry Potter.I'll be really sorry to see the end of it,which is quite close by,seeing that JKR is going to deliver the last installment next month(I'm waiting................).I think this is the first ever series which holds this kind of an anticipation for me.The rest of the books were always right under the nose.You just had to pick it up!But it's different this time round.With all the frenzy,it's really different.So just look out,bookworms and otherwise,it's round the corner,but oh damn! so far.........................

Holidays over!This is RESULT time

Hey!Everybody got their results long back.So what is this about???This is about what are traditionally considered to be trademarks of life(I mean it literally),things that can change your life, make it or destroy it, as it seems from the blaring headlines of the newspapers.But is it really true??????

Let's try to explore.

Let me start with the thing that I start my day with,yeah, the newspaper!Blaring headlines declared the first and second toppers of the Maharashtra HSC examinations,why just one, take any public examination(Of course, it is any thing except public).So the result is out, the toppers are there, smiling from the papers,fresh from the press,with detailed interviews of each one of them.At some point,it starts sounding like they're trying to teach a particularly difficult potion to prepare, with carefully measured ingredients, exactly how many hours did he/she(this is more likely, nowadays ;)) study in one day,sleep at one go,what they ate, what their parents did,what their teachers did,siblings,blah....blah....blah....................................

I am not saying that the students who have worked all the year round should not get their glory and fame,it is the media that overdo(s)es it, to compete with their rivals, maybe, but 's still more of exaggeration.Please understand!I have nothing against those who score well and study well(actually, I can't because I'm one of those kind of people,it's just that it starts sounding like more and more of a melodrama every time I ask myself the relevance of it all).So,it is two things that we wish to discuss here, the portrayal of results and their relevance.

For science students, their 12th standard is a whole lot of junk,a burden,that becomes overbearing.Anybody among the "public" who is even remotely related to some student from the science stream,especially one aspiring to go for engineering or medical must be aware of the present day rules by which the things go.So what is important is the entrance tests that would actually give them admission to the colleges they desire.But what about preparation for these entrances?Glance around dears, the sight of advertisement boards is going to really make you sick!!!!!!!!!!!Coaching institutions have cropped up just about everywhere.

Then come the results of the entrance examinations.Year after year,I can see number of candidates increasing.Each year,it seems to be a mind numbing figure,but each year it just rises and it probably will never never fall.What with the increasing population and the increase in the lunacy with which people look at the engg. and medical fields,even those who don't want to be there, irrevocably are,usually succumbing to the demands of the world,the parents,friends, relatives,neighbours(yes, never underestimate the level of their nosiness and the degree of craziness to which they can drive you!) What I wonder is,when will this end?and how?or will it??
Tha last one frightens me most, not because I myself am one of those thousands of people going in for engineering(the choice for me seems to be coming by the method of elimination), but because I can already visualise the scene.Everybody, a technician, handsome salary, good job, but satisfactory?I really doubt it!

Please undestand, I may be sounding naiive,too much, maybe, but I am.I really need to find my way out of all this frenzy,and so does everybody else,for that matter!!!!!!!!!

So it is with a huge sigh that I sign off from here.

P.S. If you thought the article was confused,it is, and it is the confusion of the mind trying to bring things out into the open and deal with them.

Tuesday 5 June 2007

Saturday 2 June 2007

Potter mania

38 days, 14 hours, 3 minutes and well some seconds..........................................

But for what?What else?

The eagerly awaited movie of the year HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX. Add seven days to the figure and get the time remaining for the release of the even more eagerly awaited "Book of the Millenium" HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS.I personally prefer the book because the movie simply can't encompass the whole book.Also, maybe because I'm a bookworm myself.

Yeah, although the fake version of the book is already available and I've already gone through it.(For those who haven't and want to,it's at www.uploadwiz.com. I can't give exact instructions because it was actually my brother who downloaded it.)The novel(fake one,I mean) answers quite a few questions in quite a fascinating manner.Fake or real,it did keep me preoccupied for some time(a total of 2 days,actually).

So what sets this book apart from the other books?I think,it's simply an altogether new world,a world that can exist only in the dreams of a writer.Of course,JKR was able to make it a part of every child's and quite a few adults'(The Principal of my school is a huge HP fan) dreams and fantasies.A book set apart from most of the others.Something different!I won't attempt to review any of the books, because there are some things you just can't think bad about.

So what set me to it?Mmmmm........ just the reading habbit, guess.I still remember it took me two attempts to set me to this book.The first time I read Sorcerer's Stone,I left it as a boring task(The beginning is quite slow.This interestingly,goes for many books, actually,some of them being my very favourite ones).I went back to it after Azkaban and then there was no stopping me.

So all I do is wait, wait for the book,of course with mingled sadness(it's the last time we're going to get to read about Harry Potter).But it's tough,for HP fans and bookworms,it is............................