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Showing posts from 2019

Law Conversations with an Auto Driver

Like any other evening on my way home from work, I went to stand in the share auto line for rickshaws, when one guy popped his head out of his auto to ask if I wanted to get in (note: there were already 3 men sitting inside). I nodded in agreement and in less than 30 seconds one of the men was asked to sit in front. Three minutes into the ride, the driver and one of the uncles sitting beside me got into a small (but very respectful) disagreement. The conversation went as follows: Passenger Uncle #1 - Why do you need 4 people to start your journey. This is a 3 seater vehicle. Rickshaw wale Bhaiyya  - Saab, no one after 7 PM will start their gaadi without 4 people. Passenger Uncle #1 - This is wrong. Kanoon aisa nhi hai (It's not the law). Increase the per seating rates if you want. One day a policeman will catch you and you people will go on strike, leaving us stranded. Rickshaw wale Bhaiyya  - Siri, yaha 7 baje ke baad Police ka kanoon chalta hai. No one will touch us.

"A Toast to the Crazy ones....!"

About a week ago, I was tasked with formulating the culture document for my Company.I love writing, so this presented itself as an excellent opportunity to do something different.  Attempting to do something for the first time always requires research. This may include reading culture handbooks of different companies, talking to the management as well as employees who've been with the organization since a long time. During one such interaction, I was introduced to a quote (authored by Rob Siltanen) which I totally related and agreed with: “Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can't do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them

Sab Ganda Hai, Par Sab Dhandha Hai - Maha Govt Plot Twist

Everyone looks forward to weekends for the simple reason that they get to relax, unwind and recharge themselves for another hectic workweek. But not the Maharashtra Govt. Atleast not this weekend. In between Friday night and Saturday early morning, our State Govt proved to us that if they put their minds to getting something done, they will; even if it involves staying up post their working hours. Hail Politics and Self - Interest! I guess it's pretty apparent by now what this writeup is going to be about. But no. I won't bore you with that anymore. Instead, I'll include a few links to help you catch up:

Alpha Ideas SME Stars Meet 2019 @NSE

The idea was very simple. 11 SMEs from various industries. 20 minutes to explain their business , growth, financials and expansion plans. No Q&A session.  Audience: Interested investors & Me Location: National Stock Exchange, BKC Off late, I've started venturing into a lot of new things. One of them includes visiting places/sessions/seminars/events to see what new is out there (even if that means I have to go alone). About a week ago, my father noticed an SME (small to medium enterprises) stars meet event opening on the Alpha Ideas blog page. Now I work Monday to Friday, so sacrificing my Saturday morning sleep, I must admit, wasn't something I was looking forward to. However......

"Ok Boomer"

What is Boomer? Boomer  is an informal term for  baby boomer , a person born during the baby boom (sharp increase in birthrates) after World War II. This generation generally includes anyone born in the US between 1946–65, a time of great economic prosperity. What is Ok Boomer? Ok Boomer  is a viral internet slang phrase used, often in a humorous or ironic manner, to call out or dismiss out-of-touch or close-minded opinions associated with the baby  boomer  generation and older people more generally.

Historical Wrongs can't be corrected by Courts: SC

Today's papers were filled with the Ayodhya Verdict. The decision made put a final end to a dispute which has been going on for the last 5 centuries.  One of the points put forward by one of the parties was to be compensated for the losses which they bore due to past regimes. Mentioned below is an excerpt from the verdict which rules out against the demand:  PS - The excerpt has been taken taken from the TOI writeup (dated 10th November 2019).

5 Good Judges - Ayodhya Verdict, Section 377, Triple Talaq and many more

India is a culturally diverse country. Which means it is home to people who belong to different faiths and follow different practices.  Now, it is no hidden secret that a majority of Hindus and Muslims have not got along well in the past (and maybe in the present too). There have been instances when difference in opinions and understanding (or obsession) of religions has taken a bad turn. In such a situation, it is very important to have a body in the country who thinks rationally and makes their decisions based on facts and evidences rather than being swayed but religious sentiments.  Enter the Indian Judiciary.  The Ayodhya Verdict panel - (L to R) - Justice Ashok Bhushan, Justice S A Bobde, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi (centre), Justice D Y Chandrachud and Justice S Abdul Nazeer.  Now, a lot of citizens may not agree to this, but in these past years, our judges of the Supreme and High Courts have taken quite bold decisions. How much difference that will ma

The Ayodhya Dispute & Verdict - What you need to know in brief

The Ayodhya Dispute: It is a political, historical and socio-religious debate, centered on a plot of land in the city of  Ayodhya ,  Uttar Pradesh  from 1528 to 2019. The issues revolves around the control of a site traditionally regarded among Hindus to be the birthplace of the Hindu deity  Ram , the history and location of the  Babri Masjid  at the site, and whether a previous Hindu temple was demolished or modified in order to make place for and create the mosque. This mosque was subsequently  destroyed during a political rally  which turned into a riot on 6 December 1992. 5 centuries of dispute.  5 Suits. 26 Points. 533 Exhibits. 88 Witnesses and 41 Days of Hearing later........ The Ayodhya Verdict: The Supreme Court ordered the land to be handed over to a trust to build the Hindu temple. It also ordered the government to give an alternate 5 acres of land to the Sunni Waqf Board for the purpose of building a mosque. SOURCE:

Why A Casino Always Makes Money

Ever wondered why people almost always lose money in a Casino (except for the few times when luck works in their favour and they leave richer than when they first entered)? Well, for starters, the House always wins because they rig the game. How?

Trade Expectancy

Trade expectancy is the calculation that shows what the typical profit is for each trade that is placed. If it's a negative, the strategy is a loser. Here is an easy way to understand it with a simple example. Firstly, the calculation combines how many trades are typically won with the average loss on losers and the average gain on winners. Say for example, you buy a stock at Rs.100, your stop loss/risk for the trade is 10 points (you will sell when the price falls to Rs. 90) and your target is 20 points from you purchase price ( i.e, Rs. 120).

DHFL is a HOT MESS right now. Why?

Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd. is a home finance company which has caught itself up in a problem they did not see coming. So what's all the fuss about? This is what normally  happens : You put your hard earned money in a low risk debt instrument (usually marketed by a mutual fund)  and forget about it for sometime because you know (or atleast you think you do) your money isn't going anywhere. DHFL comes and borrows money from a debt mutual fund for its HF loans. This keeps on happening periodically and the general understanding is that the company will repay your MF in regular intervals of time. End of story. This is what has happened :

Cross Default Covenant

Cross default is a provision in a bond indenture or loan agreement that puts a borrower in default if the borrower defaults on another obligation. Simply put, if you take a housing loan from Bank A repayable yearly for 5 years at a fixed interest rate, you are liable to pay the installments at the end of the year. However, if you have also taken some other kinds of loans, say for example, car loan from Bank B, and end up defaulting on that, Bank A will ask you to pay the rest of your amount immediately instead of waiting for the loan term to end. So, a default on one loan becomes a trigger factor for the repayment of the other loans that you have taken. Why? The answer is a question. What guarantee does Bank A have of you paying up their money and not running away when you are struggling to pay up to Bank B right now? Better to get paid now rather than wait and cry later on. Cut your losses short.

Summer Holiday Reads

The thought of vacations sometimes is a lot more fun than the actual vacation for some people. Summer holidays can get quite boring if you don't have anything on your calendar. At that time, you'll remember just how much you miss college. But the hols (that's a word from the very popular child detective series "The Famous Five" ) can also be a very good time to brush up on some reading and help widen your perspective and understand of the world while you become a couch potato (atleast that way, you win one time). I've compiled a list of books that have the power of getting you hooked on and for sometime (even if just for a few hours a day) giving you the opportunity of living the lives of the characters in the books. Afterall they do say,  "A normal person lives only One Life, but a reader lives a thousand in a lifetime".  Jeffery Archer Books: Clifton Chronicles Mightier than the Sword Sins of a Father  Personal Favorites: Be C

Part 2 - Around Goa in 72 hours

Baga Beach in the night was a treat for the eyes. I had come to the same place 9 years ago and it definitely has made a lot of improvement. The shacks are better and have expanded their area and influence onto the sands. Every shack has around 25 to 30 candle lit tables out on the sand with these low lying chairs overlooking the water and LED lights the same colour of their shacks so you know which place you’re eating at. I wanted to see Goa nightlife and I got it. The only problem was the music. It was way too loud. Every shack had a dance floor with each DJ trying to show the other guy that his set was better and speakers louder. So by the end of just 15 mins you wouldn’t really know what song you were listening to. So go eat a shack if you want to just eat and dance (and not talk, it’s useless; you wouldn’t be able to hear anything) otherwise walk on Tito’s lane for the normal restaurants. Tito’s lane is the life of Baga after the beach. That’s where all the clubs are.

Part 1 - Around Goa in 72 hours

Others would ask, “Goa jaake peeya nhi toh kya kiya?” . I, on the other hand would ask, “Goa jaake ghuma nhi toh kya kiya?”  Now one would tell you that churches, beaches, drinking and clubbing are the only things to go for in Goa. But that isn’t the case at all. There sure is a lot more to do than just sit in your room or laze around the beach. Especially when you’ve driven 14 hours to reach your destination. Phew. So what did I do? I took the car (and then scooty; with a GA registration) and drove full North Goa to South Goa. Out of the 1314kms that we drove, 100kms happened within the state in 3 days. Day 1 we went to Baga beach in the morning but since neither I nor my dad had any plans of getting wet that morning, we headed to Fort Aguada, past Sinquerim beach for some sightseeing.  This place is around 10kms (30mins) from Baga. It’s up on a mountain/hill and is a famous tourist spot. How’d I know? The number of cars were a lot and it felt like half of the famil

Of Goan Food, Drinks, ‘Feels’ and Stay

I went to Goa with my parents. And trust me, it was fun. For one, you really don’t have to worry about money when you’re out travelling, shopping, eating or drinking. Secondly, you have a 90% success rate of going to all the places YOU want to go to, instead of compromising for the sake of your friends.   Baga Balcony Glass Windows Now I stayed in Goa for 4 nights, two of which were in Baga and the other two in Candolim. Both places were booked via Airbnb. One advice: Avoid booking a hotel room, even if it’s near a beach (I don’t understand people’s obsession with beaches; they’re quite dirty and crowded). Instead,.......

1st road trip – 1314kms – Mumbai-Goa-Mumbai

The journey is more important than the destination.  I learnt driving 2 years ago (enrolled for a driving class 3 days after my 18 th birthday) and since then I’ve driven on every possible type of road. But I wanted more. Flying by air didn’t excite me. I wanted to look out of the window to trees and open roads; not clouds. 2 weeks ago after lots of pleading or logical reasoning (as I like to put it), I finally convinced my parents to accompany me on a road trip to Goa. At first, they were a bit apprehensive of the length of the journey (owing to previous bad experiences with bus travelling), but then again, you gotta do what you want to do. The route we selected was Mumbai – Pune – Satara – Kolhapur – Amboli Ghat – Baga, Goa. We only did one stopover for the night at Pune. The rest was a continuous drive with only a 45 minute halt for lunch before the start of the 73km long, 3.5 hour Amboli Ghat. Note: Just after the food mall at Lonavala and before the start of the

CRPF Personnel martyred in J&K

The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) is the largest of India's Central Armed Police Forces. The CRPF's primary role lies in assisting the State/Union Territories in police operations to maintain law and order and counter insurgency. With 239 battalions and various other establishments, the CRPF is considered India's largest paramilitary force and has a sanctioned strength of 313,678 personnel.  Yesterday, at 3:15pm, a Scorpio driven by a Jaish suicide bomber who was a local youth carrying a huge amount of explosives, deliberately crash banged into 1 of the 78 trucks which formed part of the convoy carrying approximately 2500 CRPF personnel who were returning from their vacation and proceeding to resume work in Awantipora, 30kms from Srinagar. 

A Night Under The Stars - Saphale Overnight Sky Observation

I am a winter baby. And I proved it yet again! Day before yesterday, I went on an overnight trip to Saphale (about one and a half hour away from Thane, ahead of Vasai) for a star gazing session which lasted through the whole night. This was the second year that I went through the college. Caption: That's all of us thanking our "stars" that we made it alive after spending the entire night in an open field, under a star filled sky, without turning into ice princesses. P.S - Temperatures during that night were anywhere between 8-14 degrees celcius. Also, the shiny dot there on top of us is Venus (which we got to see through a telescope) Last year when I went, everyone started shivering at around 4:30am. But this time, that very same cold got to us at 10:30 in the night itself. We made sure that everyone (even the juniors, because college students somehow tend to have a lot of garam jawaan khoon , and say "didi, humko thandi nhi lagti" but invariably en

Tips for first timers going for All-Night Star Gazing

So here's what you should make sure of before you go there: 1. Take food to eat (but not in excess) because there are no restaurants in the village and you're bound to feel hungry during the night. 2. Take a lot of blankets and warm clothing. And I mean a lot. Why? Because this is no where near  "Mumbai or Dilli ki thandi".  You're going to be out, on an open land (which gets really wet by morning thanks to the dew which forms) with fields all around you, under the stars. So it's really cold. I've only been there in February, so I can't say anything about the weather conditions of the other months. 3. Make sure you carry a plastic to put on the ground(even sleeping bags are useless) and don't get your feet wet (because you may need to cross through water by walking on stepping stones. Cold feet feel horrible). Windcheaters are the next best option.

A tribute to Mahatma Gandhiji on his 71st Death Anniversary

All throughout the year, our college keeps conducting events organized by different clubs and committees. Along with this, we also have DAY OBSERVATIONS where students get together and put up charts/skits/documentaries to spread awareness about something.  On the inside, it seems quite boring to do because it takes around a week to organize but the show gets over in less than 15 minutes. But on some days, it's totally worth it. Like today.  The Student Council members, NSS volunteers and NCC cadets of my college observed Gandhiji's death anniversary as Martyr's Day today. They put up a beautiful Shraddhanjali set up and performed a skit followed by a candlelight march in the corridor. It was beautiful.  I also want to share Bapu's background story with all of you. Since it's probably been quite a long time since anyone has spoken or written about him (I'm guessing your last time would've been during your 10th boards History/Civics paper). Someo

Republic Day - Women Empowerment

On 26th January, 1950, the Constitution of India came into effect. 70 years on, as we celebrate our 70th Republic Day, students across all schools and colleges performed shows and stunts in honour of the country. Similarly, the NSS (National Service Scheme) and NCC (National Cadet Corps) students of my college put up two spectacular shows yesterday. NSS VOLUNTEERS HOLDING THE INDIAN NATIONAL FLAG While NCC focused on all things military, the NSS volunteers took us through the "Timeline of the Indian National Flag". The highlight of the event was how they made girls take center stage for their Motorcade Formation. In today's age where people are fighting for Women Empowerment, this was an epic moment. And let me tell you, the core idea of making the girls ride Royal Enfields and drive Dusters came from the BOYS. GIRL POWER LEADS TO WOMEN EMPOWERMENT The NCC cadets were nothing less, with Rifle parades, formations, war depiction scenes and jumping out

The Josh is always HIGH !!!

Everyone's inspired this Republic Day by Uri! The Josh is always HIGH for these boys!

Republic Day Parade - The full show

Rifle squad, formations, war depiction scene and stunts and motorcade. This college's NCC unit had it all. In perfect sync and coordination, watch how these cadets pull of dangerous stunts as they show us how and what BRAVERY & HEROISM actually means.

Republic Day Parade - The Motorcade

Only Rifle Parade and Band ? Apparently that wasn't enough for these boys. Trusting their comrades to take care of them, these cadets sure have each other's backs.

Royal College NCC Unit - 26th Jan - Trust level 100

We wouldn't trust friends with this. But we would definitely TRUST OUR BROTHERS. Walking through the rifles.

Insane energy at Tata Mumbai Marathon

To read about the experience, visit @TMM

Tata Mumbai Marathon 2019

If you want to run, run a mile.  If you want to experience a different life, run a Marathon.  19 RUNNERS & 200+ VOLUNTEERS Tata Mumbai Marathon was an experience to say the very least. With over 200+ student volunteers and 19 runners from college, we set off at 4:30am from home. TMM had 6 category marathons:   Marathon 46kms Half Marathon 21kms Open 10kms  Dream Run 5.9kms  Senior Citizens Run 4.2kms   Champions with Disability 1.5kms  Since we were participating in the Dream Run of 5.9kms , our starting point was closest from CST  Station. That required us to switch trains at Dadar. You'd expect the station to be empty so early in the morning. But this was Mumbai - the city that never sleeps . Crowded with people (mostly marathon runners), this place bustling with activity.

Sambar Spotting at Nagzira Tiger Reserve

Welcome to the Nagzira Forest - The entry

Nagzira 2018 - Leopard Sighting

The weird noises that you can hear in the background are the warning calls given by the other animals around. Other than that, there was pin drop silence in the jungle. Oh! And not to forget the sounds of our thumping hearts!

Close Encounters - Spotting a LEOPARD 12ft away @Nagpur

Presentations, college activities and research work had become my life. Spending 4-5 hours on the laptop and another 3 on the phone had become an everyday thing. Not that I was complaining, but when my college's Nature Club teacher in-charge Prof. Radhika D'Souza asked me if I would like to come on a 4 night, 5 days trip to the Nagzira Tiger Reserve in Nagpur, I immediately said yes. The trip was scheduled from the 28th of December to the 1st of January 2019. This meant that I would be missing my birthday as well as New year in one shot. But trust me, I didn't regret my decision one bit. Our train was from CST at 3pm. There were around 40 other people on the trip (whom, by the way I didn't know at all; except for a few. But I later on realized that it didn't matter who you knew or didn't know at the beginning of the trip. By the end of it, there wasn't a single person whom you couldn't smile at). This was to be my first long distance train