Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Fourth Estate

The unfolding of the 2 G Spectrum scandal has me in its grip.Not that I never suspected things were pretty bad before, but this was the last straw. The unblemished Fourth Estate have sunk so low, you cannot even bend over and see them. The silence in the mainstream media after the Nira Radia tapes is deafening. It is indicative of a collusion of all the media players. Each being quiet because they have something to hide.

The tapes of course can be heard on Youtube.

The likes of Ratan Tata, and Ambani being embroiled in this case, does not bother me so much because who are we fooling, if we think business is possible without murky, underhand shady dealings. But Sanghvi and Burkha Dutt swimming alongside in this sewer makes me angry. Especially since they seem to take the moral high ground and are clearly biased on so many issues. They are entitled to their opinions but unfair reporting and coverage make them unfit for their 'supposed 'professions.

Admittedly I was already hopping mad with (as someone referred to her as) 'Bark-huh' Dutt for her amazingly unethical and biased talk shows, where the choice of the panelists is suspect and anyone who does not align with her thought is silenced or purposely misinterpreted. I specifically refer to her panels on the Kashmir Issue. As a Jammuite who does not support Autonomy or Azadi, of my home state Jammu and Kashmir, her skewed panels personally affect me.But the phone leaks of her conversation with Radia are the icing on the cake. I am not sure whether I should be disheartened by the state of my Nation and all its premier institutions or pump my hand in the air and say "I told you so"!

Dutt has denied her power-brokering and probably thinks it is only her and her friends, the pseudo-intellectual mafia of the country who speak or understand English. Rest all of us are still grappling with the complexity and illogicality of the English alphabets and phonics, and hence cannot read the CBI and IT department Reports or comprehend the conversation in the tapes.

Guilty or not ..God knows! But has it and much more before this, colored my opinion as unfavorable for her and her channel.. a resounding Yes!

An interesting and possibly the only positive off -shoot of this whole drama has been the power of internet in breaking through circles of power and corruption and its attempts to silence. Internet has allowed the, shouting out loud, of differing opinions and most likely the truth. Blogosphere is on fire and citizen journalism at its best.
NDTV and Barkha Dutt's arm twisting of a blogger Kunte and his subsequent (smartly worded) apology has only added fuel to the fire with FB pages sprouting, and condoning the obvious attempts at 'gagging'.!/group.php?gid=51657291081

I am not sure what the consequence of this whole sham will be. After all the ones in power are each more corrupt than the other or simply spineless. But hopefully it will have given a jolt to the mainstream media and taught them, that they cannot sit on things and cover up. Thank God for small mercies and technological advancements.
Also for many Barkha Dutt lost her credibility sometime back and now, for even fewer, the greedy mainstream media and especially news channels remain an authentic source of information.

All that I have said above are my views and MY views alone. I am not on the payroll of BJP or any other organization. If I was I would not be writing this blog. I would probably be out there, winning some National Award.
I am unable to authenticate all my feelings and opinions with hard core evidence. And even if I could I know I can be easily out-shouted, out-screeched and spun around in circles, by these very same journalists, till I would want to bite my own tongue for having ever wanted to speak.
I already admit defeat to the new brand of journalists whose purpose and true vocation are lost on me.

Moreover and most importantly, I do not have the money to fight it out in the courts. I am your typical honest, serviced middle-class, Indian, and a sinlge-earning family-by-choice-for-now-atleast (phew!am I gald I got that out there), who has the education, but not the requisite power or money to pariticipate in the long running daily soap opera'sque court cases.
The above should be read as it is ..a disclaimer and an attempt seeking protection from lawsuits.

At the end all I want to say (to be taken with a grain of salt by all my dear journalist friends, I swear I still love you) is that I always understood why the word Politician was a 'gaali'.
Never understood when words and even colors like Nationalistic, Hindu, Religious,Saffron, Green, and not to miss Bihari/Bhaiyaji came into the same category. (Though I have been told that the Bhaiya jis or the Biharis are waiting with baited breath for Nitish Kumar to come back into power and change things and futher restore their lost regional pride.)

What I finally foresee, is the distinct and increasing possibility of the coining of a new gaali :

"Abbe ja, journalist kahin ka!!!!!*&^%$#@!!!!!"

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

One World at a Time

What a coincidence that there I was feeling melancholy and blue when I chanced upon 'Motherhood' a chick-flick, rather a mom-flick starring Uma Thurman. The movie made me a little not-so-blue because I felt I was not alone. Then I read D's post and confirmed what I always knew that the 'other' side ( the working women) have their moments too. In fact I feel for 'them' even more.

The same day my younger brother who is expecting a baby next March asks me (for once serious) " Di How hard is it to bring up a child?" I did not know where to begin. Should it start from the moment you conceive and feel as if your body has been taken over by aliens. I am sure my husband will agree for the raging hormones did make me seem posessed for a little while atleast. I was happy and glowing most of the times and sometimes resentful as I bloated and expanded horizontally while my husband maintained his waistline. And then I will not even go into the pains of normal childbirth lest my sis in law spends the rest of her pregnancy traumatized and hates me for it afterwards. I will skip the initial trials of everything to do with the baby and the recovery of a post pregnancy, first time or even second time breast feeding, bruised,battered and sore body.

Let us focus here on the joy of holding this 'mini version of me/hubby/either of the grandparents/a random relative/a combi of one two or all'.
The sense of accomplishment. A chance to experience magic at close quarters. It is an experience which cannot be substituted by any other. And you spend the rest of your days thinking what did I do before the baby?

Aftermath of that new Mommy glow prepare!!!! will be swamped by a growing sense of inadequacy. The constant gnawing guilt that you could do better or are not doing enough. There will be moments of pride simply for being with your child, and doing what you know best but these will be few and far in between.

And then again as it is for me today you will be confused and will wonder if there is all that is to it?
Who was I and what have I become?
Am I not a working Mom because I work hard but at home.
Is it not a valued skill or role anymore?
If I did not study for this role and am at it for the last few years have I wasted all those degrees from fancy colleges?
Will I be able to work outside home ever again?
My children will grow up to need me less and less.
What and who do I tend, care for, be there for 24/7, chaperone, drive around, feed, bathe, clothe, hold, once they fly off the nest.

When people, fellow classmates, friends rattle of their present projects and designation should it suffice to say I am CEO of my household and presently eyeball deep in "Project Motherhood"
Is putting on pause all my dreams for myself and myself alone very unwise?
If I hit myself on the head (literally) for whining about "I want my Life back" for what is my Life if not this that wrong?

I shall ignore the fact that I look like a thing the cat dragged in while waiting at the bus stop as the smartly dressed, high heeled clad, hair and nails perfectly done, woman, walks by.
I know she has her own troubles and I don't mean the killer heels.
I will hold that warm little hand, in my hand tighter, for I know it is only for a little while before it leaves me to reach higher.
Undoubtedly it is tough to make room for passion and focus on things I enjoy in the structured mundane seemingly petty activities of an all-over-the-place-Mum-only's day.
But I must keep trying.
I will remember on bad days what my children said to me"Papa only goes to office, but Mamma does everything :)

All I need to remember is that there is a time and place for everything and this is my place and my world for now.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Diwali Saga in our Household

Diyas lighted for the Puja

Kitchen : Weekly Message Board ..Diwali Special
The NYC Taxi an ode to 7 years spent in the NJ/NY area of USA

Our Dining Area...tiny..typical of a London flat. Golden Diya cut outs
pasted on the wall!


Corner Table...Silver and Brass

A Tea Light Holder which goes with the Indian Decor of my
Living Area

An attempt at Rangoli...a variation on the imprint of Goddess
Laxmi's Feet

Puja Prep with Son's Diwali Craft as the backdrop

Art Work done at school by my son adorning the Fridge

Wish had paid more attention in the craft classes at school..
attempts to make the entrance festive :)