Monday, July 27, 2009


It's raining outside and suddenly it feels as though Nature is no longer angry. Instead of the sweltering heat, there is a cool breeze accompanied by lovely rain...sigh...makes me philosophical.

Sometimes, actually many times, whenever I meet someone senior to me in stature, I get this feeling of being a inferior. Why does this happen although I know it happens to everyone?

If I would meet someone as a stranger, not knowing what that person does but just talking to that person as a normal human being, wouldn't that be infinitely better? Just connecting at the very basic level..the level of human beings who feel and think instead of judge. But I do judge and I try to change that and with time, I know I will.

I wish there was some way by which one could simply erase all these distinctions based on degrees and occupations. That is one reason why I love the blogging world. Here we are simply human beings with thoughts and experiences to share.Nothing more and nothing less. That is the precise reason why it is beautiful.

As for how to tackle the problem, I know that the answer lies within me but it isn't that easy. Sometimes I think it isn't easy and then sometimes I think that perhaps I am just complicating things for myself and in the end, nothing is as bad or complicated as one thinks to be.

As for judging people, it has reduced considerably but I can't say that it has gone completely. All I can say is that I have improved from before and will continue to try till I succeed for I know that the world is a reflection of my thoughts...what I think is what I shall see.

Do any of you feel the same way at times?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Genetically Modified Food

My dear friends,
Today I have something to share with all of you and I would want an honest opinion from everybody on the said matter. I am sure everybody has a very strong opinion on this issue.
So here goes...
I work for an NGO called AID-Association for Indian Development. It's a huge organisation with its branches all over India.
So I get this mail about a campaign called I AM NO LABRAT. I read all I could and I went with my friend to volunteer in the campaign. It was held in Delhi Haat, a spot which attracts a lot of people for its authentic hand made Indian crafts.

To be very honest, I did not know anything about GM foods before I joined this organisation and I can say that most of the Indian population must still be unaware of how important this issue is.
So what exactly is the meaning of Genetically modified foods?
This term is most commonly used to refer to crop plants created for human or animal consumption using the latest molecular biology techniques. Such plants are modified in labs to enhance certain desired qualities/traits such as increased resistance to herbicides or increasing the nutritional value of the crop . For example- Plant geneticists can bring about all these so called desired traits in a crop plant by isolating a certain gene. Say if the geneticists want to make the plants drought resistant, they will isolate a certain gene which can allow the plants to grow even in drought like conditions and then inject it into the plant. Hence we get a drought resistant plant. These genes can be injected from one plant into another and also from non plant organisms. The best example of this is the use of B.T genes in corn and other drops. B.t or Bacillus thuringiensis, is a naturally occurring bacterium that produces crystal proteins lethal to insect larvae.Once these genes have been transferred into the corn, it enables the corn to produce its own pesticides against such insects. Hence, now the poison is not outside the food but inside as well and these companies give the reason that genetically modified food is good as it is pest resistant. Actually, the pesticides are now INSIDE the plant so why should we need pesticides in the first place? They say that pesticides are bad for human health and then why do they go ahead and produce it inside the plant itself?

Coming back to the campaign, we as volunteers had to get as many people as possible to sign the petition against the introduction of GM foods in India. GM foods had been introduced in USA in the 90's and perhaps even before that if we listen to what Jeffery Smith (Author of the book Seeds of Decepetion) said.

The introduction and production of GM foods have been severely opposed in many parts of the world especially in parts of Europe. USA is the one country which produces maximum GM food.
Now the question which first came to my mind is that why do we need Genetically Modified Food? Why? Is there such acute food shortage in India and the answer is no. India is the already the second largest producer of rice and wheat in the world after China. The only impediment in our path is the low mechanisation of agriculture. If we can improve upon that, things will change drastically.
The main arguments in favour of GM foods are that it increases productivity and a world with increasing population will soon have much more demands on food which is where GM foods will save us all. Quite wrong. A very nice cover although and what is the cost of this gift? Our lives.

I may be no scientist, but what is the guarantee that these genes which are lethal to insect larvae will not affect us at all? Maybe not in the short term but who knows about the long term? Why take such a chance when there is no real need to?

Another aspect which is quite scary is that if they are introduced in India, there will be no separate labelling for GM foods. Hence people will not even know what they are eating. And why will labelling not being done? Because labelling costs are very high and not every country can afford that. One more fact is that B.T cotton which was grown in India was initially met with approval as the productivity was very high. But then it slowly began to drop and by the end of it, the land itself became unfit for any type of cultivation ever again. Now why did that happen? Imagine the condition of the farmers if they were forced to grow such plants? Even the seeds of GM crop plants are infertile which would mean that the farmers would have to buy the seeds again and again from these companies. What will that lead to? Monopolisation in a decade or so and money coming in from all directions for such companies.
The total side effects of GM food is not really known, even to the scientists. Even if GM foods have to be introduced some day isn't it just in our part to want concrete evidence that it isn't harmful for us? Even medicine is introduced in the market after extensive research and experimenting for 17 years. Then why is there such a hurry to introduce GM foods right now? Especially when it has been proven that there are severe health hazards.
I would suggest all of you to watch this video-
I would want all of you to share all the information or knowledge you have on this issue.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


Hello there my dear friends,

Been down with Viral fever.Still am.

Isn't it strange how sickness make you contemplate so much? You get so much time to yourself that you are bound to wonder about many things happening around you.

When I was in bed reading a book or writing it made me think how helpless I am. I hated the feeling of depending on someone, even if it's my own family. A burden seems a burden and then I thought how sad life would be if we never had someone who really genuinely cares for us.

Sure enough there will be people to laugh with us but how many will stick around and be your strength in times of weakness? How futile will life seem then? With no one to love and no one to love you back?

Sometimes I take my loved ones for granted and this period has made me realise how wrong of me that was.

My partner, although living in another city, made me feel so much in these few days. His concern for me was genuine and I can't explain in words how blessed I felt. Eventhough he treated me like a child at times, I loved it. I love him. With everything I have and I'm grateful that it is reciprocated in equal measure (sometimes more).

If you are reading this my paira, I want you to know how much you mean to me and thank you for always being there without fail. I love you.

I have to catch up with reading my favourite blogs now.



Monday, July 6, 2009


I'm sure most you must have heard about this book. It was written by AYN RAND in 1943 . It's a classic and after reading the book, I believe it has every right to be.
First of all, AYN RAND is a literary genius. The way the book has been written with not a single paragraph being out of place, is simply amazing. I wasn't bored throughout the book. There were times when the things said became too much for me to take, but I loved every part of it.
The main message the author has wanted to convey is that every human being should not compromise with what they really want. Doing what you want to and making it happen is the first and foremost duty to ourselves and the rest is secondary.

The book goes on to describe the life of 2 people who studied in the same architectural college. On one hand, we have HOWARD ROARK and on the other we have PETER KEATING. Howard was expelled from the college in his third year because of his bold and radical work. He refused to ape from the masters and stuck to what he believed in. That is Howard Roark for you. A man who refused to compromise on what he believed in and was ready to face the consequences of standing against the masses. But one thing that baffled me completely was Roark's ability to be totally unaffected by the crowd. What the world thought of him didn't make a difference to him for he knew what he wanted to do and knew he was going to do it. Now here is some food for many of us are actually totally and completely unaffected by the society? Perhaps a very few or none at all.
Now we come to Peter Keating, the most popular guy in college who passed with flying colours and got a placement in an eminent firm almost immediately after graduation. But Peter was hungry for fame and money. He wanted recognition, not the kind which a human being wants for himself but the kind which a human being wants to impress the society with. That is Peter Keating for you. A man who thoroughly compromised with his morals for the sake of money and empty recognition. Empty because it didn't make him happy deep down and the saddest part is that he refused to acknowledge his unhappiness. In a mad race to be the number one, he compromised with all his needs in life. Thus he ended up as a second hander.

In the words of Howard Roark, there are 2 types of people in the world. The CREATORS and the SECOND HANDERS. The creators are the ones who do what they want to do, not what society wants them to do. All the geniuses of the world have been creators who did not give a damn to what society thought of them. They refused to blindly follow and therefore were tried to be punished by the society in general and why was that? Simply because they were a threat to a society which had never made decisions for itself. They were a threat to the people who compromised with their wishes and ended up being nothing but an empty shell of a human being who had to find happiness in other people's happiness, not inside themselves. Society always has and always will be an obstacle in the path of every independent minded human being simply because they have dared to think different. That is the truth of life, a fact which cannot be ignored. That is the reason this book has been termed as a classic. The truth expressed in this book shall hold true for all time and that is what has made the book eternal.

Now we come to the love story between Dominique Francon and Howard Roark. Now this is the part which was not to my liking. In the act of trying to defy society and stand by Roark, Dominique destroyed quite a few lives. But their love had a strange quality which was not easy to comprehend. The fact remains that although Dominique refused to bow down in the eyes of society, she did just that by marrying twice before finally marrying Roark. She was afraid to see him ruined and thus married someone else. In my eyes atleast, that was an act of cowardice.
In the end, I would like to say that the book conveys a lovely message and gives us a lot of food for thought. It's thought provoking and makes us ask a thousand questions to ourselves. Are we living for others? Are we really doing something we want to? Something we genuinely love? Something which can be ours only? Are we brutally honest with ourselves? Are we living with integrity and honesty or are we just making a damn good show of it?

Well, all these questions crossed my mind. Did it cross yours too?
What I have learned from this book is that there are no half measures in life. If we do something, it should be out of love for that thing and not because society expects us to do it. If you dare to think and dare to achieve, YOU WILL.

Thursday, July 2, 2009



My friend gave me this book and since I wanted something to read, I started.

My partner had told me beforehand that the book is rather slow and boring and does not reach a point where one can't stop reading it.

Well, I started and I must say that the beginning was a bit disappointing and it didn't make much sense. Well, since when did super natural stuff make sense anyway? I told myself that and kept reading. There were places when I had tears reading it. The love between Lisey and Scott was not a perfect love story with all the passion and romance as promised in fairy tales. And that is why I loved it. I loved coz it was simply human and real. It was something true, not to be dreamt of but to be felt for real. It was not about excitement and never ending passion, it was about loyalty, true understanding and a love which grows stronger with time, a love which weathers all the storms and decides to hold on anyway. That is why I loved it. Because it was true.

The book is about a journey of conquering your worst fears and more than that. There are very few people in this world with whom we can share our deepest fears. Much less are the people who can really understand them. Scott shared his fears with Lisey and Lisey understood him. She is the one who saved him countless times and saved him even on his dying day by simply being with him.

It was a lovely story. There was one part which made me terribly sad because it was very true. It meant-

When someone we love dies, it doesn't really register in our minds. In some way, they keep living in our minds and hearts. But then come the times when you wake up all alone in bed and you to tell yourself that the person you love is DEAD.GONE. That is how they actually die. Slowly and gradually. They die a little bit more everyday but never do they die in one go.

Lisey's story was Lisey's journey of letting her husband's soul rest in peace. Every morning she woke up and she kept talking to herself in Scott's voice. Many times, she heard him talk to her. That is the saddest part. She could'nt let go. The story is all about how she finally lets go and how bloody hard it is.

I was crying like hell when the book finished. She finally let the dead rest where they belonged. In the past. It was so sad to even think of loved ones being parted that way. But that is life, isn't it? We live, we love and we die.

Lisey's story can be seen in many other perspectives too. It can be said that certain parts were gruesome and it can be said that certain parts were lovely. I choose both. It was the gruesome and sad parts which made the lovely parts all the more beautiful. Isn't that the truth of life? The struggle makes the prize all the more valuable.

A lovely book with a poignant story given meaning by two people-Scott and Little Lisey.