Airlift II.

This morning’s Business Standard had this interesting piece of information which my readers would like to read following my original post on Airlift.

How AI landed in Guinness
Business Standard | New Delhi Feb 01, 2016 09:04 PM IST

A just-released Hindi movie, Airlift, has brought the evacuation of over 117,000 Indians from Kuwait in the wake of the Gulf War back in focus after more than 25 years. Incidentally, the whole episode got listed in the Guinness World Records (GWR, then known as The Guinness Book of Records), thanks to the efforts of Jitender Bhargava, who headed the public relations department of Air India back then. After 20-odd days of issuing daily media updates about the operation, he wrote to the editor of GWR one day to find out if any record of evacuation by a civil airliner existed. The editor replied in the negative. So after the operation was over, Bhargava sent GWR a detailed letter on the evacuation and Guinness accepted it as a record. A few months later, a new edition of the GWR was published with Air India’s achievement duly listed.”

Partly Read Books.

closed book

Yesterday’s Business Standard had a very interesting article by a favourite writer of mine. T C A Srinivasa Raghavan writes incisively on many topics and this was one that got me thinking about my own collection of partly read books.

After reading the article in full and before I read all the morning’s papers, I went to take stock of the number of books that I have in hand that have only been partly read and I was shocked! There are six of them and more importantly there are twelve totally unread ones waiting for me to find some time.

I still manage to get in about two to three hours of reading everyday but facebook, blogging, visiting blogs, email and solving crossword puzzles take up quite a bit of my time besides my new hobby of seeing movies in theaters and also on DVDs at home.

Like TCA SR suggests, I should really get rid of many of the books that I have already read, and perhaps some that I have read partly but have no intentions of reading ever. But I am simply unable to get myself to get rid of them, despite knowing that I must if I have to find space for new purchases that will most certainly take place sooner than later.

I kept telling myself that the kindle will solve the problems of space for books but the reading experience of a hard copy book is divine whereas reading in the kindle is sort of soulless!

I have therefore decided, and I hope to implement the decision fully, not to buy any more books, hard copy or kindle, till I get rid of some and also finish reading the backlog.

Do you have such a problem too?

Resurgent India.

My friends Nat/Usha and Anil/Nina were recently on a long motoring holiday in Gujarath and Rajasthan. They had an absolutely grand time as Anil has repeatedly told me on the phone and email.

His latest mail adds a bit of spice to the travelogue.

The text that accompanies that photograph makes for fascinating reading.

“At Udaipur where we stayed I saw this sight in the morning.
Husband & wife team of Municipal sweepers came on their motor-cycle with a huge broom and with their daughter to sweep the streets around the place. Their daughter came ready with her school bag for the school due to start some time later.
They were around for over an hour claeaning the place and then drove off to drop the child to school.
On request they posed for the photographs. Soon I need to send them a copy too.”

Christmas morning’s Business Standard has an editorial by a favourite writer of mine, T N Ninan which talks in terms Economicese about this phenomenon too!

I was beginning to feel good till this article in the Times Of India brought me back to reality.

Anil, we have some way to go before I can crow!

The Underdog Syndrome.

My friend Sandeep is part Bengali and A. K. Bhattacharya a columnist with the Business Standard, one of India’s leading economic newspapers is a Bengali. Bengalis by reputation are considered to be highly emotional people. I am not prepared to comment on that stereotyping, having had the privilege of being married to a part Bengali for forty years.

Sandeep is usually quick off the starting block and AKB is more the long distance runner. Sandeep is a premortem analyst and from all accounts AKB is a postmortem one.

The whole world came to know, thanks to our modern media and its rapid fire spreading of disasters of our Common Wealth Games (CWG) fiasco before the event. The same media played true to type and spread glorious reports of the opening ceremony of the Common Wealth Games.

Sandeep wrote about it before the event and AKB after the event.

You can read Sandeep’s take on the subject in his blog post.

You can read AKB’s take on the subject in his ‘middle’ in today’s Business Standard.

I being an interested observer of both writers’ outputs, leave the field thoroughly pleased with both for being Indian.