Category Archives: India

The Lilies of the ground!

Flowers in the windPhotograph taken at Windflower resorts, Pondicherry, India

Consider the lilies, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin;yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass which is alive in the field today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O men of little faith!:

Luke 12:27-28

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Be the Light to this World!

The Lighthouse

Photograph taken in Pondicherry, India

An inspiring illustration of shining Christ’s light to others occurred during WWII, when the Russians began their counter march against the Nazis. A young Nazi soldier found himself behind Russian lines.  He was bleeding from a gun wound in one arm.  Bewildered and afraid, he found his way into the home of a poor Russian peasant. She welcomed him into her humble home, and offered him food and rest.  He did not understand why she was so kind, since he was her enemy, but before he departed, he noticed how she would stand before her icons of Christ and the saints, praying. This soldier recalled years later, “I could see God living in that home, even though I had never known Him before. Before this, I believed that God didn’t exist, but that the State was my god. And this false god taught me to hate those who didn’t believe as I believed. Although I had never even seen a Bible in my life, no less read one, from the witness of that woman, I came to realize that God was alive because I saw Him in the life of that poor peasant woman.”

A short time later, as this same soldier attempted to find his way back to the German lines, he became lost and returned to the home of this friendly Russian woman, only to discover that her home had been burned down because of what she had done to help an enemy soldier. Well, the soldier did eventually find his way back to the German side, but he found his way back as a new man! He had seen the light of God! And following the war, he decided to dedicate his life to serving Christ and trying to share the light of Christ with others, all because he witnessed God’s love and mercy through this humble Christian woman! – This story is an excerpt of a sermon from here

Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven – Matthew 5:14-16

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Have Courage my friend!

Amidst the waves

                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Photograph taken at Pondicherry,India

“Do not be surprised that you fall every day; do not give up, but stand your ground courageously. And assuredly, the angel who guards you will honor your patience.” St. John of the Ladder 

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Trusting the Lord!

The Fisherman

 

When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.”But Simon answered and said to Him, “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.” And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking: Luke 5:4-6

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Reaching the Port!

Men on a boat

 

“To reach a port we must set sail –

Sail, not tie at anchor

Sail, not drift.”

                                                                   ― Franklin D. Roosevelt

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Let it Rain

Monsoon Moon

Is tonight the night when our thirst will finally be quenched?

Is tonight the night when this scorched earth will finally be refreshed?

Oh Oracles of prosperity!Let it rain, let it rain we pray

 Pour out your hearts on us without further delay

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The Madrasa

Firuz Shah Tughlaq’s Madrasa at Hauz Khas (established 1352)

The Ruins of the Madrasa

I was once the glowing pride of emperors

The coveted abode of seeking scholars

Today, as I lie in ruins, may my crumbling edifice continue to inspire

an education that the world treasures forever

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Jai Ho!For a Progressive Government

The largest democracy in the world has a new government in place, albeit one that seems set to be self propelled through the next five years

The exit polls had predicted a close game between the NDA and the UPA. The NDTV exit poll however seemed to suggest a slightly wider majority for the UPA. As one who has been groomed to support the Congress through life, I chose to accept this verdict and through the next day, parked myself in front of  www.ndtv.com, watching the results unfold.

And what a win it was…from 216 to 242 to 256 to 261…a clear mandate handed over to an incumbent government.

Personally, as a minority and bred in the city, I could never think of voting for the BJP. Over the years their treatment of hindutva has only caused fear and made me unsure of my right to leading the life of an Indian national . Modi’s development at the cost of the riots is no development at all. The incidents in Orissa,Bangalore, Mangalore, Varun’s hate speech all add up to one logical conclusion: They dont deserve to be in power

L.K Advani’s face was splashed all over the media. Obama type campaigns were run all across the internet to the point they started interfering. People wanted answers not propaganda, people wanted conversations not faces staring out of screens through Google adwords.The Twitter and blogging campaigns were full of propaganda ” We did this and that and…”As it is, with only 5% of the population online and with a significant proportion of the lot not voting, the internet campaign did not make sense in the first place.

L.K Advani was projected to be the face of change. A lifetime of his politics couldnt change the country and he expects to do it now. I would much rather go with the younger faces of the UPA who define change as giving empowerment and employment to the poor, as changing the very way in which the country is governed. I would much rather go with a prime minister who understands the health of the country and has the experience of nursing it back to health. I would much rather go with a prime minister who performs rather than challenge others to mindless debates!!

With the likes of SP, RJD and the BSP safely out of the picture its “Jai ho” for positive change and for a better India 

 

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Indian Railways and Toilets…Did you Know?

Talk of a second class toilet on any Indian train usually evokes faces of utter disgust or a sling of the choicest abuses on how the Government/railways has failed in providing sanitized rest rooms for the traveling masses. I haven’t had to care much as a matured internal digestion cum egestion system ensures that I usually don’t feel the urge to use one. After reaching the destination, however, it is usually a mad and frustrated dash to my dwelling place.

Anyway, one should consider himself lucky to be born in an era where not just 1 but 2 toilets are provided in each coach, irrespective of class. Did you know that in the first 55 years of the Indian Railway’s operations, there was no toilet provision in the lower classes!!

It is, they say, a result of the following letter, that the railways decided to be more humane and include toilets in all classes of coaches for trains running more than 50 miles.

“I am arrive by passenger train Ahmedpur station and my belly is too much
swelling with jackfruit. I am therefore went to privy. Just I doing the
nuisance that guard making whistle blow for train to go off and I am running
with ‘lotah’ in one hand and ‘dhoti’ in the next when I am fall over and
expose all my shocking to man and female women on plateform. I am got leaved
at Ahmedpur station.
This too much bad, if passenger go to make dung that dam guard not wait
train five minutes for him. I am therefore pray your honour to make big fine
on that guard for public sake. Otherwise I am making big report to papers.”

The letter was written by a certain gentleman named Okhil Chandra Sen to the Sahibganj divisional railway
office in 1909 and is on display at the National Rail Museum in New Delhi.

The Locomotive drivers,however haven’t been so lucky and till today, don’t have toilets on board. I guess it’s the vast semi barren landscape that currently bears the burden of their discomfort.

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1984 Delhi riots and beyond: Will we ever learn?

The 1984 Delhi riots had always been dismissed as a blotch on our history and something that should be avoided. However it is when you see those casualty numbers being replaced by people like you and me that the pain starts to sink in.
For me the only stories which came close enough were when my dad and mom hid a sikh in our house and the brutal murder of my aunt’s colleague’s husband…all distant…all vague.
However, after watching ‘Amu’, one realizes the tapestry of lies and deceit that governments have woven over the past 25 years.
What is even more disappointing is that justice hasn’t been served and many of the accused are at the highest echelons of power and in a position to dictate and thwart justice’ normal course.
Ditto for the Gujarat riots, though the papers, nowadays seem to suggest some movement towards the light of day.
Perpetrated by politicians and in connivance with beaurocrats and cops alike, such riots and violence targeted against specific sects of society have only deepened the rift amongst various communities. Hindus against muslims and muslims against hindus, sikhs against the rest of us…slowly the paranoia is hitting into the fabric of this nation. Mobs, riots, murders…our tolerance is never a question as the divide ensures that such acts always find supporters and justifiers for a cause that hits at the very existence of this nation.

The British succeeded in wrenching Bangladesh and Pakistan using religion as the bait and the number of separationist movements existing today ensures that a suffcient percentage of the taxpayer’s money is spent only on defense and in dealing with counter insurgency.

These days L.K Advani’s campaign is a highlight across digital media . WHat is unfortunate, however is that while he uses new age communication mediums, he still harps on the Ram Mandir issue, when and wherever it makes sense. Such double speak is what confuses me and I am only amused by a campaign where he claims to make India a strong and prosperous nation.

Ditto for the Congress. As a party that stood for Indians during the independence struggle, why is it that it seeks to hide and shelter those involved in such acts of terror and ethnic cleansing? Has the party lost all sense of ethics and responsibility for a nation that was founded on the tenets of a constitution that is regarded as one of the best in the world?

I went through some articles on the 1984 riots and am posting them here for your reference:
Wikipedia on 1984 riots
The TOI on 1984 riots
The story of a victim

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