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Friday, August 29, 2008

The Cursed Warrior

He was born with the valour of the Sun who was actually his father. He was blessed with armour and earrings that would protect him from all assaults.

He was a dutiful son who lived in a humble abode with his parents. He was a brave boy with the dreams of being a warrior in his eyes. He promised his friend that he would help him with a battle he was fighting. He stood by him always.

He was Karna. He was a warrior. A cursed warrior.

When he expressed his wish to learn archery to the royal sage, he was turned down for he did not belong to Kshatriyas. When he stood by his friend Duryodhan, he was again reminded of his caste.

He still stood by his word and decided to protect Duryodhan and offer him any help that he would need - only to be told a secret that no one knew. He was the brother of Pandavas, the five men he was fighting against. He knew that a man's word was his duty and he followed it with all his dedication.

His protective shield was taken away from him by a God dressed as a beggar. He was on the battlefield when the wheel of the chariot got stuck in the mud.

The brave warrior, the true friend, the dedicated student, a man of words was shot by an arrow as he bent down to pull the wheel out.

Tragedies strike like the lightening. You have absolutely no say about it...

Thursday, August 28, 2008

From a clay ball to Elephant God

Trying my hand at the urban Hinglish style of writing. Slightly long post, bear with me.

My experience at a eco-friendly Ganesh-idol making workshop at IITB

As I left the registration desk, a ball of clay on a small sheet of wood was handed to me. I looked around and saw some half-made while most completely done Ganpatis. I looked at the ball on my table. I was kind of scared - will I be able to do it?

Phir toh bas, Bhagwan ka naam liya - and kaam pe lag gaye. The instructor asked us to make four equal-sized balls of the huge ball. Bas banaa diye - remembered the laddoo-making days as a child at Nani's place. The practice paid off as I placed four perfect round balls on my table. The instructor looked at them and said, "Sir, kaise banaaye hain aap ne?! Unhe finishing dijiye!" Finishing? Now what on earth is that? I dipped two fingers in the bowl of water and just kept cleaning the surface of the balls.

"Okay now, take the first piece and make a square pattice of it?" Oye! Ganpati banaana sikhaa rahe hain yaa ragda pattice?!, I thought. I took time doing it. I was the last one to finish. Then, the instructor said, "Now take small pieces of clay and place them on the lower half of the pattice as the stomach of Ganpati." I did it with expertise though.

Just then, the instructor said, "Sir, Aapka pet (tummy) bahut chhota hai!" Dude!! I felt like the king of the world!! Finally, someone had noticed the disappeared paunch of mine. Soon I realized it was about the idol I was making. Ganpati is called 'Lambodar' (the one with the huge stomach) and I had to make the 'Udar' (stomach) 'lamb'. (huge)

After the tummy was done, she again said, "Finishing do abhi!" And again I moved my fingers lightly over the surface of the idol.

"Now make two thin strips for the hands!", she said. "Can I make four?", I asked, "I want my Ganpati to have four hands!" Aur yaar that instructor made faces jaise maine use uske do haath hi maang liye ho Ganpati ko chipkaane ke liye! "Sir, chaar haath chipkenge nahi!"

But I was adamant and I did make four hands - the lotus, the sword (that doesn't look like a sword), the Hand that blesses and the one holding the modak.

"Ab do logs banaiye as leg piece!" An old lady raised objection to it. She was deeply offended at the usage of 'leg piece' for legs of Ganpati.

Then we made the legs, the Elephant head and then the instructor declared that the rest depended on us. We could use our creativity and make the idols beautiful.

I made a tiny lotus and a modak for Ganpati bappa to hold. I made a shawl (Aah, I remember how awkward I feel at poojas back home - when I have to sit shirtless. That's when mom comes to rescue and hands me a shawl.) for Ganpati. I made two tusks, a crown that looked more like a hat. Bhai, kuch karna padega - the instructor told me that I could paint it appropriately later.
It was time to paint. They had three colours - yellow, red and white - natural colours. I began painting - my strokes were light and my hand was not steady as such. Later, things went on.

When it was time to use the white colour for the ornaments and the eyes, etc., Anupama (my cousin) 's voice echoed through my ears (Yaya I know I am filmy) , "Keep it subtle and simple. Loud is tacky!"

So, I made some basic lines on the Ganpati and here it was - Ready!!

By the way, Finish tak pataa nahi chalaa ki yeh finishing kyaa hota hai!!! Making the idol was, however, an experience of a lifetime!!!! Superbly fantabulous!!

On a more serious note,

It gave me a sense of achievement and a feeling of bliss as I converted the clay ball to the Elephant God that I love the most. The God created me - I created a representation of his today with my own hands. I felt I had converted my belief in God to a physical form - the idol that rested before me!

Understanding AI Series - #02

Why did a computer, Deep Blue beat Gary Kasparov, the human chess Grandmaster? The experts will tell you that Deep Blue (DB) could do so because it could foresee all the options of the next hundred moves and each time the Grandmaster played something, DB would again generate the new hundred move possibility.

Is this intelligence? Or mere efficiency? In that case, can I say that DB beat Gary Kasparov just because it was more powerful in terms of resources and computing ability? No.

Predictive reasoning is what DB did - reasoning out one's prediction. This is what astrologers (who are, in my opinion, scientists) do. This is what we the ordinary humans do. This is what Sherlock Homes did. (He started off at an assumption - and came to a conclusion which he thought would make sense.)

Predictive reasoning is intelligence. DB is intelligent.

Question : What are, then, the things that human intelligence can achieve but artificial intelligence cannot?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

These parents

They are parents like any other parents. They take care of their children and look after them to the best of their capability. They are different. They are the single parents of the world. They are single - they live without their spouse and they are parents - they raise the little child who looks up to them and smiles.

These are the men and women who truly value the child that depends on them. Solely on them. And in a way, they depend on the child too.

They are the fathers who wake up early in the morning, get ready, make breakfast and wake up the child, get him dressed and drop him to school.

They are the mothers who come home in crowded buses with a chocolate in their purse - just because she was late to pick her child up from the creche.

They are the parents who walk down the road holding the child's hand. You cannot make out whether the child is holding their hand - or whether they are gathering courage and support from the child.

They are the parents who forget the loneliness in their hearts due to the lack of a life partner and set their eye on the upbringing of their child.

They truly define parenthood - the feeling of being the shady tree. Just that in this case, the tree stands alone on a barren mountain.

The Beggar

Disclaimer: Pure work of fiction

It was 4.00pm - the time when the Mumbai local trains just begin to get full. This is the time when the lazy ones like me love to commute - for this is the latest that you can expect a seat when you are boarding the train at an intermediate station.

The train coach shook left and right as the train moved like a graceful snake taking smooth turns. The compartment of the train that I was sitting in was empty. By Mumbai standards, it means that the seats were all taken but there was no one standing in the corridors.

I was at the seat farthest from the window - the one closest to the corridor. I was oblivious to everything around me as I read this new novel I had bought. To my left sat an elderly gentleman who was flipping through the pages of the afternoon tabloid. Many others in the compartment silently looked at a college-going couple coochie-cooing on the seat at the window. A group of female teachers sat on the seats to my left as they talked about the degrading standard of students in school.

The train halted at Bhandup* as a group of college students boarded the train. A tiny, frail figure followed them. He was hardly three feet tall. His shoulder blades protruded as he walked with a hunched gait. He wore a t-shirt which must have been bright yellow at some point of time - for it was too dull to be of any colour now.

His lips were thick black. His hands were dark and had white patches - probably of a vitamin deficiency. He had overgrown hair that had gone completely out of shape. He was walking barefoot on the dirty floor of the train.

He touched people's knees. When someone would glare back at him, he would frown, place a hand over his barely-there tummy and make gestures asking for food.

Most of them paid no attention - they looked at him through their specs and went back to what they were doing.

The college students who were standing in the corridor kept pointing at each other, "Yeh saahab hai... in se lo!" He moved ahead - he was experienced enough to know that they wouldn't offer him any alms.

The romantic couple saw him - the girl twitched her eyebrows, the boy drew the girl closer to himself. Looks like he just needed a reason.

The group of teachers sighed and looked at each other as he enthusiastically continued the gestures he was trained to do. A teacher reached out for her purse and placed a five-rupee coin on his tiny palm.

He now went to the starched-white-shirt-clad men who offered him a ten-rupee note. He knew they would. He proudly folded the note and kept it in the backpocket of his torn shorts.

Once he had moved along the corridor of the entire compartment, he stood at the door holding it by the handle. His over-sized t-shirt inflated like a tiny parachute as it filled with air. A streak of smile appeared on his pale face.

By then, the train had reached the next station. The little beggar got down from the side where there was no platform. He jumped on the rails, climbed the platform on the other side.

He would now take a train back to Bhandup - where he started from.

He would keep shuttling to and fro between the two stations for the rest of the evening.

(Bhandup is a suburban railway station on the central line.)

Monday, August 25, 2008


Distrust is a stone pelted at a crystal-clear mirror that shatters the mirror into pieces. Distrust is the stream of deep blue venom that spreads like a snake in a glassful of milk.

Distrust is a baby turtle that is about to reach the sea but that gets picked up by a hungry sea-bird. Distrust is the fatal infection at the root of a tree that is powerful enough to uproot it.

Distrust is the worst pain you can give to a loved one.

Distrust makes you feel paralyzed.

The world spinning

Disclaimer: Just random imaginary ideas. Sadistic. May be disturbing.

He tried to balance himself with his palms on the wet floor as he tried to get up. The world was spinning, he had a sharp feeling in his skull - it felt as if it would shred his skull into a thousand pieces.

He managed to sit on his blood-covered knees as a horrific scream escaped his throat. The scream echoed through the room like a hundred vultures hovering over a dead goat. He clasped his head sideways with his hands. The blood between his nails got smeared into his hair.

He collapsed with a thud in the pool of his own blood. A tiny bubble was formed on the surface. The bubble was his last breath.

Thursday, August 21, 2008


The baby is wrapped in a soft blue sheet with embroidered flowers on it. It is playing in its cradle stretching its arms out to you. You smile, the baby giggles. The baby does not know your name, does not know who you are. It does not understand what you are saying to it. It giggles, holds your finger with both its hands, throws its legs up in the air.


The boy is standing with his hands folded. He is wearing a t-shirt which is twice his size. The mother is scolding him for staying out late. There is a clear tone of concern and helplessness in the mother's voice. The boy smirks with a 'i-dont-give-a-damn' expression.


As a child, we don't mind smiling at a stranger. As we grow up, we are unable to give joy to the people who actually care for us.

Is this what growth, exposure, success does to us?

Monday, August 18, 2008

A child again

He held the handle of the bicycle by the rubber-clad edge - the handle shook as he thought he had lost his balance. He held onto the handle and placed his leg sideways. He pushed himself upwards to the seat. Things looked higher from here.

He pedalled. The cycle shook. He pedalled. The cycle was moving smoothly. He kept pedalling as the cycle cut through the air at a zooming speed. He could feel his lungs inflated with the same air. He felt a gush of excitement.

He was smiling like never before. He had become a child again. It was after two decades that he had ridden a bicycle...


Some little things are left back as the memories of childhood. It is good to revive and relive them once in a while.

Remember a habit of yours as a child? Frog-jumping? Dressing up like a princess? Playing in the mud during the rains? Try it once again. Maybe not in the same magnitude.

But try it. It will make your day...

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Parts of speech - Conjunctions

(Continuing the series of posts that I started two months ago...)

Conjunctions are the words used to connect two words, sentences or clauses. They are these small knots in a sentence that keeps it together. Sadly, these conjunctions can be added to make sentences longer than what the reader's mind can capture. (Imagine someone saying, "I did this because I wanted to get this and this but she said that I should do this or else I will have to face this or this or this and yet not be able to achieve this.") It is conjunctions that allow such difficult to understand sentences - faltering the basic goal of communication.

Conjunctions, however, are the 'junctions' where two sentences meet. (That perhaps could be the reason why they are called so.) Conjunctions create relationships between them. Relationships of common goal (I did this and he was with me.), uncommon goal (I did this but he was not with me.) or other relationships in terms of conditions (If I do this, he will be with me.).

Conjunctions are relationships between sentences... Relationships of goal, of reason, of condition, of dependence. Conjunctions truly set up relationships. They are the ones that help a group of sentences become a paragraph.
Relationships add meaning. So do conjunctions.


The rose petals descend and fall at the feet of the flag-pole as the flag unfurls - like a bird stretching out its wings just before flight.

Against the background of grey clouds, the Tricolour flutters proudly like a triumphant warrior looking at the captured battlefield. 

Amidst the rattling noise of the heavy downpour, the 'Jaya Hey' mesmerizes the air as if it were the fragrance of a flower.

The people standing beneath the flag take a deep breath as they capture the fragrance of patriotism that the national anthem evokes in them... and as they watch with their heads held high, the Tricolour - the metaphor of their freedom!

Image source: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/41/Flag_of_India.svg/450px-Flag_of_India.svg.png


Kinship is affinity. It is a feeling of belonging to something or someone and hence, the liking for the particular thing/entity. It exists within all of us; the reflection of this inherent feeling is situational, in my opinion. We, as schoolchildren, have had disputes with our friends from other schools as to which school is better. We have often given our inputs about our own community during a discussion about the traits that different groups of people possess. We have represented our school and college during a ‘higher level’ competition – or the firm we work for among a group of peers at a conference. The more lucky ones have had the chance to represent the country.

 Does being proud of one’s school, family, community, workplace mean being self-centered? Most definitely, not. Pride does not imply supremacy. Kinship – this feeling we experience, is in no way connected to denial of virtues of something/someone else.

 Kinship exists at different levels. The term ‘team spirit’ is closely linked to kinship when you are a part of some team. ‘Communalism’ (often used in the negative sense) is at the community level. The generic term ‘love’ is also a form of kinship. ‘Patriotism’ lies at the national level – which most of us fail to experience in the truest sense. At the topmost level known to humans till now, is ‘humanity’ – belonging to the human race that believes it dominates the world.

 Affinity is the most natural thing in the world. From the electrons that move around the nucleus of an atom to the planets that do something similar around the sun, there is some affinity, some kinship (which Physics terms as ‘force’) involved. The world is composed by  this kinship that we is all-pervasive. 

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Understanding AI - Series 01

Knowledge is open to interpretation - knowledge, in fact, is a product of interpretation. Knowledge emerges. But not from nowhere. It exists - but it emerges - whenever it does.

Artificial Intelligence induces this intelligence - the ability to grasp AND produce knowledge into computers. It enables a computer to play a game of chess against a human. It enables a web-application personalize the user's webpage automatically. It enables a system to understand spoken words, translate words, transliterate words.

Artificial Intelligence is intriguing. Because intelligence itself is.

I would like to explore Artificial Intelligence more as I parallely would understand the meaning of intelligence itself.

Next post: Does speed of computing kill the need for intelligence?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Java is Mallika Sherawat

Java is like Mallika Sherawat for Computer Engineers. You like her, you dislike her but you can't ignore her. And if you want a programming-related job (such jobs occupy a lion's share in the IT market), you need to love her - literally romance her and put up with her whims and fancies.

I had a love-hate relationship with her - but now, seems like we are getting close. She has begun to like me - I have begun to grow a crush on her. I was talking about Java. Yes, that's another similarity - both are (equally) intriguing.

By the way, Java and Mallika Sherawat, both are looked at as 'objects'. And both don't have a problem with it.

P.S.: For more on Java, refer www.sun.java.com .

Death of a Tree

Disclaimer: An original expression of a first-hand experience

The wind blew hard as fiercely - shaped grey clouds filled the sky. When the tree saw that it had gone exceptionally dark that evening, it shivered with fright. There were droplets of water moving down its trunk - the tree was visibly scared of the sparks of rain that fell on it. The tree held tighter to its roots but the bonds with the Mother Earth were loosening up now.

It took no time for a branch - nearly an arm of the tree to break down when a lightening struck. The branch broke and a rustling sound topped the sound of the rain as the branch burnt down. A group of squirrels that were hiding inside the tree till now ran out only to find marshy swamps outside the tree.

The tree kept watching with fear in its eyes what was about to come. The winds kept blowing harder as the tree finally gave in. It let go of the roots it was holding on to. The atleast thirty feet tall tree collapsed to the ground. There was a loud thud that filled the air - the rodents all around ran helter-skelter.

In a minute, one could hear only the rain. Its branches were frail. The dried leaves got plucked off them. There were dried leaves floating on the top of the marshes. The squirrels ran up and down the trunk to find out if it was still alive.

But the tree lay calm on the earth, its roots uprooted and a glob of soil corroded, the branches dismay and the tree lifeless. The tree was dead...

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Cutouts from childhood

Disclaimer: Not completely a work of fiction

He was moving out. He opened the old cupboard, he had to empty it today so that the movers could pack it up. Dusty books were piled up on the topmost rack. Clouds of dust emerged as he picked them up one at a time.

He found a small wooden box. As he wiped the top, he saw letters - letters that were etched on it with the pointed tip of a geometric compass. It said ' GHOST INSIDE . DO NOT OPEN'. His lips broke into a smile as he opened the box - he had written that message on the top twenty years ago.

As he opened the box, his eyes shone in a glow. There were tens of small cutouts with a small strip of cloth attached to the back of each like a hook. The cutouts had faces and shapes - an egg man, a happy face and a sad one, a brinjal-shaped lady, a moustached man with buck-tooth. The haphazard strokes of pencil, the uneven layers of crayons - he heard giggles in his ears..

He remembered cutting out those shapes from drawing paper, then colouring them for hours together, attaching hooks at the back and using these cutouts as finger puppets. 

He remembered how he and his sister tied a bed-sheet across the room while they presented the puppet show to the completely imaginary audience. He remembered how they would have the brinjal lady dancing, the egg man pompously throwing his weight around... He remembered the name they had coined for the duo - 'Talented Duo Productions'.

The cutouts in the box had brought back cutouts of memories from the childhood - that he had forgotten and that had piled up in the dusty corners of his mind...

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Traffic policeman

Disclaimer: Purely a work of fiction.

On a circular post in the centre of a junction or often on the road itself stands the traffic policeman. He wears khaki trousers and a white full-sleeved shirt properly tucked. His (physical) arms are literally the arms (weapons) he has.

Like a music conductor of a troupe, he uses his arms to orchestrate the traffic on the road.

What comes out as a result is a symphony of sounds - the impatient honking of completely out-of-sync horns, the whooshing and swooshing of cars, the commotion of pedestrians. At the top of them all is a controller sound - the sound of the traffic policeman's whistle!!

Days after days, irrespective of the weather, this music continues all day long. The cars that are the troupe members of this unique music group move - from a junction to the next - from one controller to the other... The maestros at the junctions, in all their glory, are assuming the position that they enjoy and live up to.

3 Idiots

3 idiots! I have two reasons for being anxious about this film. One - Rajkumar Hirani whose first two films I loved - which did not really have the fake KaranJoharish opulence and were entertaining at the same time. He introduced a new terminology in both of his films and the way he did it was quite interesting.

The second reason is that the movie is based on 'Five point someone' - a book that I finished reading in one go! 

I found this picture online - searched for '3 idiots' and read a synopsis that spoke about Aamir Khan as Ryan. Throughout the article, Aamir Khan occupied the centre of attraction which was a bit unnerving. Ryan is not the central character at all. Hari (played by Madhavan according to the article) is. I hope the 'starry image' of Aamir Khan doesn't overshadow the story.

Looking forward to finding out whether the spirit of the book is captured in this movie...

(Trivia: Kareena Kapoor plays Neha while Sharman Joshi plays Alok.)

Friday, August 08, 2008

Washing dirty linen

Aah! Now that I'm at a hostel - and that I washed my clothes on my own for the first time in my life only last week, dirty linen isn't a new sight for me. Washing dirty linen in public has never been something unfamiliar anyways.

Film actresses scratching each other in cat-fights on TV shows, actors criticizing (read : 'bitching about one another') the more popular ones on blogs. Or on a more personal level, people (read: 'ex-friends')  giving vent to their misunderstandings in public.

Sadly, the general tendency is often something like this - if I don't like someone, I have to hate him. And if I hate him, I need to say bad things about him. And I would not leave any stone unturned to look down upon him or spit venom in public. In other (simpler, meaner) words, I would gossip/bitch about that person... And hey, we all love to be an audience to all this too.

Physical 'clothes' need to be washed. But one can do away with the linen of discontent, ill-feelings that we grow for someone. Don't wash this dirty linen in public. Throw it away. And that is because washing dirty linen in this way will only give muddy water. 

The point to be noted, milord, is that the gossip mongers thrive on this muddy water itself. They love to play here. And we know which animal loves to jump around in mud, don't we?!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

The Inner Temple 2

Disclaimer: A narration of a first-hand experience.

I close my eyes. I see darkness. As I continue to stare at it, I hear a humming sound, a sound that seems to resonate through my body. No, I cannot hear it actually. I, in fact, 'experience' the sound with the senses that the conventional sensory organs would not be able to tap.

The humming sound that I experience is in the form of ripples, waves - waves that move up and down and waves that take me along. The feeling is similar to the image that the moon casts on the rippled surface of a lake. I am shaking, moving up and down and at times, sideways.

The motion seems to follow no pattern at all - but yes, I am moving in a breeze of some sort. A breeze whose source is steady yet unknown.

It takes me some time to realize that it is not my body that is moving. There is something unknown within me that is moving with this equally unknown breeze.

My body is not moving. Something within my body is.

I open my eyes at once. This was act one by the God inside me.

Picture courtesy: Google

At the dinner table

When the family sits at the dinner table, they are a family. The man is not the manager of his company, the lady is not the executive. The children are just children. When the family sits at the dinner table, they are father, mother and kids.

As they have dinner together, they pass around plates, bottles of pickle and help each other with servings of food. The kids describe in an animated manner the day at school; plans for the weekend are made. Stories of the family - the happy as well as the troubled times are shared.

More than anything else, the laughter that emerges from the chairs here is real. The 'how-are-you's are not polite questions. The concern, the anger is heartfelt. It is the place where several busy people living under the same roof meet again. It is the place where the kids feel the warmth of a family. It is the place where the family learns, decides and develops the willingness to stick together.

The dinner table, according to me, is the perfect metaphor for the modern-day nuclear families.

Monday, August 04, 2008


The earth completes a revolution around the sun in a little more than 365 days.

Revolutions that civilizations have witnessed stem from a force of certain kind as well. There have been social, religious and technological reform movements throughout the world that turned the world around (the way the earth does when it is completing its revolution.) The human race believes to have taken a magnificient leap with the rise in communication technologies. There has been social transformation at different levels too.

The point to note is that after the earth completes a revolution, it comes back to the same position - in a different orientation, however. The earth is now looking in a direction slightly different from how it started. The earth, however, does not change its trajectory - the path it had been going round and round in.

Revolutions that humans have brought about change the directions, the orientation with which they look at things around them. Sadly, however, humans have changed their trajectory too. The trajectory every species was expected to follow was 'survival'. The humans have entered a new orbit of 'dominance' along with survival.

What humans think revolution is, is not revolution at all.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

An electric Personality

Some people are born attractive. It's not (just) about the way they look but about the eyeballs they grab each time they enter the room. They are the ones who do not have problems talking to strangers while on a train - they end up becoming friends with some of them. They are the ones at the centre of the dance floor at a party even if they are not at the physical centre of the dance floor.

They are the ones cracking jokes charming the women wherever they go. They are the ones who the waiters at the restaurant go to first to take the order even if there are six others seated at the table. They befriend the taxi drivers, the salesmen at malls, the pizza delivery men, the chemists - there is something magnetically electric ('electromagnetic' ?! ) about these people.

Their electric personalities help them outshine others wherever they go in public. And that's perhaps why they have sparks flying all over!!!

Friday, August 01, 2008

Dr. Prakash and Dr. Mandakini Amte

(This is a self-initiated blogpost and not a promotional move of any kind.)

Dr. Prakash and Dr. Mrs. Mandakini Amte were declared the recipients of Magsaysay Award in the category of community leadership.

Their work ranges from constructing hospitals to imparting education - formal as well as informal. From encouraging them to stand for their rights to a leprosy rehabilitation center. From protecting wild-life to makeshift medical camps as and when required.

We have first families in politics, in films, in business. But families like these that spend their lives collectively for a cause are rare to find. Baba Amte, his wife, both his sons and their wives and now grandsons have set an example of sorts.

How do I look at all this? How do I react beyond a 'wow, that's a good job' expression when I read it in the newspaper?

We all have a Prakash Amte within us. Even if we are able to activate him - for a small duration of the day, for a small period of time in our lives, we can make a difference.

If a Baba Amte can spend his life with lepers who have given up physically and more so emotionally, if a Prakash Amte can make social work a cause and passion, why can't I keep my surroundings clean? Why can't I treat people around me with respect? Why can't I look after my old neighbours? Why do I close my nose when I pass by a dustbin which a cleaner is emptying with his bare hands?

There are people who ponder over these questions. And there are people who join the league of these exemplary social activists.

Visit their website at : www.mss.niya.org