Friday, December 31, 2010

Kashmir where every mile is two in winter

The above image is clicked on my Canon EOS 1000D.
(Specifications on request)

Monday, December 27, 2010

Don't Compromise the Integrity !!

The above image is clicked on my Canon EOS 1000D.
(Specifications on request)

Friday, December 17, 2010

Wikirebels - The Documentary

A USB Stick is mightier than sword
Here is an exclusive rough-cut of first in-depth documentary on WikiLeaks and the people behind it!
From summer 2010 until now, Swedish Television has been following the secretive media network WikiLeaks and its enigmatic Editor-in-Chief Julian Assange. 
A great attempt by reporters Jesper Huor and Bosse Lindquist who have traveled to key countries where WikiLeaks operates, interviewing top members, such as Assange, Spokesperson Kristinn Hrafnsson, as well as people like Daniel Domscheit-Berg who starting his own version - after parting from Wikileaks. 
The documentary makes us think about this revolution. Where is Wikileaks heading? Stronger than ever, or broken by its opponents? Who is Assange: champion of freedom, spy or rapist? What are his objectives? What are the consequences for the internet? All this and more. Watch this awesome inspirational piece on youtube.
You can also download Wikirebels from the link through a torrent client.
Truth prevails no matter how long it takes.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Stone - ingrained with history

Below are a few quotes that I would like to share. Rest the picture tells it all.
"Before I was humiliated I was like a stone that lies in deep mud, and he who is mighty came and in his compassion raised me up and exalted me very high and placed me on the top of the wall." - Saint Patrick

"Become dust - and they will throw thee in the air; Become stone - and they will throw thee on glass." - Dr. Mohammad Iqbal (RA)

A stone is ingrained with history and i want to be a part of it.

The above image is clicked on my Canon EOS 1000D.
(Specifications on request)

Friday, November 5, 2010

Cricket Legends - Imran Khan - Chapter 1

Imran Khan is indisputably the greatest cricketer to emerge from Pakistan, and arguably the world's second-best allrounder after Garry Sobers. He took a mediocre side and transformed them into world-beaters, leading them to the World Cup title in 1992. This video is the first of the series of four (4). 

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Statement by Arundhati Roy after her house was attacked

Arundhati Roy, October 31, 2010

A mob of about a hundred people arrived at my house at 11 this morning (Sunday October 31st 2010.) They broke through the gate and vandalized property. They shouted slogans against me for my views on Kashmir, and threatened to teach me a lesson. The OB Vans of NDTV, Times Now and News 24 were already in place ostensibly to cover the event live. TV reports say that the mob consisted largely of members of the BJP’s Mahila Morcha (Women’s wing). After they left, the police advised us to let them know if in future we saw any OB vans hanging around the neighborhood because they said that was an indication that a mob was on its way. In June this year, after a false report in the papers by Press Trust of India (PTI) two men on motorcycles tried to stone the windows of my home. They too were accompanied by TV cameramen. What is the nature of the agreement between these sections of the media and mobs and criminals in search of spectacle? Does the media which positions itself at the ‘scene’ in advance have a guarantee that the attacks and demonstrations will be non-violent? What happens if there is criminal trespass (as there was today) or even something worse? Does the media then become accessory to the crime? This question is important, given that some TV channels and newspapers are in the process of brazenly inciting mob anger against me. In the race for sensationalism the line between reporting news and manufacturing news is becoming blurred. So what if a few people have to be sacrificed at the altar of TRP ratings? The Government has indicated that it does not intend to go ahead with the charges of sedition against me and the other speakers at a recent seminar on Azadi for Kashmir. So the task of punishing me for my views seems to have been taken on by right wing storm troopers. The Bajrang Dal and the RSS have openly announced that they are going to “fix” me with all the means at their disposal including filing cases against me all over the country. The whole country has seen what they are capable of doing, the extent to which they are capable of going. So, while the Government is showing a degree of maturity, are sections of the media and the infrastructure of democracy being rented out to those who believe in mob justice? I can understand that the BJP's Mahila Morcha is using me to distract attention the from the senior RSS activist Indresh Kumar who has recently been named in the CBI charge-sheet for the bomb blast in Ajmer Sharif in which several people were killed and many injured. But why are sections of the mainstream media doing the same? Is a writer with unpopular views more dangerous than a suspect in a bomb blast? Or is it a question of ideological alignment?
Arundhati Roy
October 31st 2010

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Arundhati Roy: The debater of big things

An Editorial published in the Guardian on Thursday, 28th October, 2010
The novelist has bravely used her position to draw attention to the unjustifiable repression of unrest in the Kashmir valley
Above Photo: Arundhati Roy during an event 
"Whither Kashmir? Freedom or Enslavement?" at Srinagar
On trial for sedition in 1922, Mahatma Gandhi told the court in Ahmedabad, Gujarat: "I have no desire whatsoever to conceal from this court that to preach disaffection towards the existing system of government has become almost a passion with me." Sedition "in law is a deliberate crime", he admitted, but it "appears to me to be the highest duty of a citizen". History does not repeat itself, nor does it always rhyme. Still, the words of the father of modern India come to mind when considering the case of Arundhati Roy, who faces arrest under pretty much the same colonial sedition laws that earned Gandhi a six-year prison sentence.

The writer is under threat of a sedition charge after claiming in Delhi this weekend that "Kashmir has never been an integral part of India. It is a historical fact. Even the Indian government has accepted this." Ever since, the rightwing Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata party has been demanding the author's arrest and trial. The party's general secretary claimed: "Anyone speaking against India should be hanged."

As sentiments go, this is both daft and directly contrary to the Indian tradition of open debate and healthy dissent – and the Congress-led government should say so. The BJP may find Ms Roy's position shocking, but her comments are hardly new – she has been making similar public statements for years now. Nor is her argument a novel one; as the author (and occasional contributor to this paper) points out, she has only been voicing "what millions of people ... say every day". All she has done is bravely use her position to draw attention to the unjustifiable repression of unrest in the Kashmir valley that has been taking place over the past few months. Rather than chase after a novelist for speaking at a seminar, the Delhi government would be better off investigating the 100-plus people who are believed to have died in violence in Kashmir since June.

When Ms Roy won the Booker for The God of Small Things in 1997, the Indian press celebrated her as a powerful writer, an international success and an addition to the country's deservedly renowned literature. To be all those things means also having the liberty to speak your own mind – as Indians know very well. As Amartya Sen points out in his book The Argumentative Indian, there is a long, deep tradition in the country's discourse, of encouraging argument from all comers. Mr Sen quotes a poem from the 19th-century Bengali writer Ram Mohun Roy help make his case: "Just consider how terrible the day of your death will be. Others will go on speaking and you won't be able to argue back." Such sentiments are far more Indian than nonsense from irate BJP activists. ©

Also, wanted to share a video on her stand on Kashmir. below is an interview with Democracy Now, that clears many doubts about the dynamics of the dispute and the present scenario. The video is taken from Democracy Now.

The above image is clicked on my Canon EOS 1000D.
(Specifications on request)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Little Mermaid

O train me not, sweet mermaid, with thy note,
To drown me in thy sister's flood of tears!
- William Shakespeare, The Comedy of Errors

Image is clicked on my Fujifilm Finepix S7000
(Specifications on request)

Amnesty to host live chat over twitter about human rights in Kashmir

Govind Acharya of Amnesty Intenational will be holding a live chat over twitter from twitter handle @acharya_dude. The best way to ask a question is to address the twitter message to Govind on @acharya_dude as well as include a hash tag #askai in your message. Appretiate this move by AI to hear the voices.
WHEN: Thursday, October 14, 10am – 11am Eastern US Time (19:30 in India/Kashmir)
Please click on the below given link for more details.
One of my photographs has also been published by Amnesty International on this blog. Here is the direct link.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Why Extra??

Our experience of life is a reflection of our inner world. The landscape we paint with our minds becomes the one we walk through every day. We are the architects of our ways of living. Many people are unaware of this, thinking that life ‘just happens,’ that events occur by chance, and that they are forever at the mercy of random occurrences.
Some choose to walk, some choose to fly. But to fly, you need something "Extra" and if you do not possess that "Extra", you are gone.. Better join these who have been walking and do not pretend as if you are flying. That simple walk will make things happen.

Anyways, a few days back I managed few shots, hope you like them..

All these are clicked on my Canon EOS 1000D.
(Specifications on request)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

I see you ..

An interesting phenomenon that happens when I look at my own pictures… maybe it happens to you as well. Every now and then I see myself and I look similar to what I think I look like. I look like the image that stares back at me from the mirror every day.
But most of the time I do not look like that personality at all and it feels a little weird. It feels uneasy, and a little insecure, when I do not look like the image of myself I have been carrying around in my mind. It also feels a little disappointing. I practice looking at myself, finding the things I like in my own reflection, so that I can learn to accept myself. When I see something very different from that image it throws me off balance a little. I find myself staring at the photo looking for traces of the person I know, looking for what I find beautiful and acceptable in the image I see in front of me. I guess it is that need to feel okay with myself.
The image is clicked on my Canon EOS 1000D.
(Specifications on request)

Friday, August 20, 2010

The way to live

Today, I feel there is a need to elucidate a sensitive term often used worldwide - JIHAD. I believe that this particular word as such has been misinterpreted and wrongly used by most. The use is such that it has now become a global term and an icon of fear and hatred. But in fact this word is such a beauty in itself that each and every being is one way or the other associated and involved with it.
Jihad, an Arabic term, is a religious duty of Muslims. In Arabic, the word jihād is a noun meaning "struggle." Jihad appears frequently in the Qur'an Sharief and common usage as the idiomatic expression "striving in the way of Allah (al-jihad fi sabil Allah)" A person engaged in Jihad is called a Mujahid, the plural is Mujahideen.
According to scholar John Esposito, Jihad requires Muslims to "struggle in the way of God" or "to struggle to improve one's self and/or society." Jihad is directed against Shaitan's inducements, aspects of one's own self, or against a "visible" enemy (I repeat "Visible").
The four major categories of jihad that are recognized are
  • Jihad against one's self (Jihad al-Nafs),
  • Jihad of the tongue (Jihad al-lisan),
  • Jihad of the hand (Jihad al-yad), and
  • Jihad of the sword (Jihad as-sayf).
Islamic military jurisprudence focuses on regulating the conditions and practice of Jihad as-sayf, the only form of warfare permissible under Islamic law. This is where the confusion arises.
The term has accrued both violent and non-violent meanings. It can simply mean striving to live a moral and virtuous life and fighting injustice and oppression against Islam. The relative importance of these two forms of jihad is a matter of controversy.
Our beloved Prophet (S.A. - Peace be upon Him) is said to have regarded the inner struggle for faith the "Greater Jihad", prioritizing it over physical fighting in defence of the members of the global Islamic community.
In Modern Standard Arabic, Jihad is one of the correct terms for a struggle for any cause, religious or secular. For instance, Mahatma Gandhi's struggle for Indian independence is called a "Jihad" in Modern Standard Arabic; the terminology is applied to the fight for women's liberation also.
Mahabarata and Ramayana too were the perfect examples and there are a thousand lessons to learn out of them.
Jihad is the way of life. The way to live.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

How I became a stone thrower for a day

A insightful personal account of Hilal Mir of Hindustan Times clearly describing how circumastances can force you to change you into a different avatar. Thought of sharing it with my friends as it hints our senses about something that we already possess within. What it takes to be in the most beautiful but hostile Kashmir   
I left Kashmir a year ago to preserve my sanity. Moving to Delhi, with its pace of life and 'normalcy', I felt stable at last. I would now be able to maintain a safe distance from that place, I thought to myself. And, to a large extent, I did.
On July 4, I went home on a vacation. Driving me home from the airport, my friend and Outlook's Kashmir correspondent Showkat A. Motta told me about the horror he and some other journalists had to face the day before. While following a procession on its way to Sopore, they had been fired at by a policeman on the Srinagar-Sopore highway. They had shouted out that they were reporters. Only a hail of abuses was returned. Taking cover in a nearby field, they were wondering how the bullets had missed them. I don't blame Showkat's wife for asking him to quit journalism and raise chickens.

The first day was the only one during my 20-day holiday to Srinagar where shops were open and traffic was going about normally. The next day, things went wrong again. I went to the funeral of two people. One was a 17-year-old blue-eyed student, who looked not too unlike Chief Minister Omar Abdullah. The other was a 35-year-old father of two children. According to the protesters at the gathering, the teenager had been hit on the head and then thrown into a flood channel by the police. The older man, they told me, had been shot at during the procession that was bearing the boy's body.

The crowd was loud. The women wailed, pulled their hair, beat their breasts and slapped their faces. The men shouted pro-indepedence slogans as the two bodies were lowered into their graves. This wasn't anything new. I had seen this far too many times. But here again, there was something different.

This time, I realised soon enough, people want, for the lack of a better word, revenge — being totally aware that their acts of revenge will result in more deaths. It's a rage more directed towards one's helplessness than towards any armed soldier or policeman. Why else would, as the national media describes them, these "frenzied mobs sponsored by the Lashkar-e-Tayyeba" not kill a soldier they had cornered on a road? Why would they just beat him up, strip him and let him go?

It turned out that I, too, wasn't immune to this potent cocktail of rage and helplessness. I was moving around with a few other journalists in the curfewed, deserted city when a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF)soldier stopped us in the Old City. A reporter of a local daily showed him a curfew pass issued by the government. Without a flutter, the soldier tore it up and shot back, "Where's your bloody curfew pass now?" I had no time to get a pass. I just showed my Hindustan Times identity card. I presume the word 'Hindustan' did the trick.

The next few days were spent in exhausting discussions on politics in parks and in the Mughal Gardens. The calm instilled in me by Delhi was wearing thin. For the first time I felt like an 'ordinary Kashmiri' and wanted to react like them. Along with several journalists, I went to Kawdara in the Old City where separatist leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq was leading a demonstration. This soon morphed into a clash between youngsters and CRPF soldiers who had been camping in a bunker.

I picked up a stone from the debris of a housing cluster burnt by CRPF soldiers in 1990 and hurled it at the soldiers, a few of whom were filming the stone-throwers with mini-cams. Caught, I could have been booked under the Public Safety Act and jailed for two years without a trial. I would have been jobless because no news organisation would have a felon on its rolls. But I threw more stones.

As I was hurling the stones it felt like this was the only legitimate thing to do in that cursed place. And after being restrained by my fellow journalists, disoriented, I walked to Nawab Bazar. In the Old City, where I was born.

Nawab Bazar was as furious that day as it was 20 years ago. Angry youngsters, whom I had seen growing up, were pelting the CRPF bunker with stones. The bunker was built on the spot where a man sold phirni and children would line up for the sighting of the crescent moon announcing Eid.

Twenty years ago, militants were attacking this same bunker with AK-47 rifles. A short distance away from it, the Dogra king's soldiers had shot my great-grandfather dead in 1931. Twenty years ago, when the bunker was being constructed, my father's best friend, a fanatical Congress supporter, prophesied that "your eyelashes will turn grey, but the bunker will still be there". He died last year. His eyebrows had started to grey and all his hair were silver.

Old demons stirred inside me in the 20 days I was holed up in Srinagar. During the nights, I would look out of the window of my room, holding a digital recorder to catch the songs of freedom blaring from mosque loudspeakers and wafting through the quiet air.

Twenty years ago, I had heard and sung the same songs. Today, the bunker in Nawab Bazar has grown bigger and uglier, with all those loops of barbed wire, fences, gaudy paint and slits to show that it hasn't grown tired. But then, neither are the people of the city where I was born and from where I had run away again.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Life goes on

Amidst the aura of death that smokes the valley these days, I manage to sneak through and ride along the most breathtaking stretch besides the Dal lake. Wind touched my face and I could feel the cool rush of air that whistled through fluttering my shirt. I captured a few moments that proved me wrong.
Irrespective of the kind of situation and conditions throughout the region where life has lost its significance and dignity, I realised that there is a power that keeps it alive. Life goes on in one form or the other. It changes its forms and color irrespective of the events that are created by man. I realised that man who enjoys the title "Ashraf-ul-makhlooqat" (Arabic term for the highest form of life) is just an intruder who is tirelessly working in disturbing the systems of nature. Unknowingly, he is doing no good but building up a huge castle made up of hazardous explosives.
It is just a matter of one moment and his huge empire will be lazed to ground. Man has never contributed to nature constructively. He has been selfish throughout the ages, creating deliberate conflicts, killing fellow men to enforce his might and an endless list. He has refused to accept that he is the culprit – the cause of the entire nuisance.
If we start observing nature keenly, there are a million things that can be learnt. One can see the simplicity and the way nature is streamlined. One can see the freedom that life enjoys being in the laps of nature righteously. But no one is ready to think about it.
Someone had rightly said that “Man is the only animal that spits”.

All these are clicked on my Canon EOS 1000D.
(Specifications on request)

Monday, July 26, 2010

The man behind WikiLeaks - Julian P Assange

Seemingly out of nowhere, Julian Paul Assange, a silver-haired Australian, has emerged as the world's most important newsman. He's done so by hosting a website,, that publishes classified military reports and other secret information.
"Since it went online, three and a half years ago, the site has published an extensive catalogue of secret material, ranging from the Standard Operating Procedures at Camp Delta, in Guantánamo Bay, and the 'Climategate' e-mails from the University of East Anglia, in England, to the contents of Sarah Palin's private Yahoo account," reported The New Yorker's Raffi Khatchadourian in the best profile of Assange to date. "The catalogue is especially remarkable because WikiLeaks is not quite an organization; it is better described as a media insurgency. It has no paid staff, no copiers, no desks, no office. Assange does not even have a home."
WikiLeaks garnered worldwide attention in April when it posted footage taken from a U.S. Apache military helicopter over Iraq in 2007. The footage showed American soldiers killing at least 18 people, including two journalists. On Sunday, in its latest disclosure, the site posted roughly 92,000 classified documents on the American war effort in Afghanistan.
Khatchadourian explains about this man and the idea behind
"He had come to understand the defining human struggle not as left versus right, or faith versus reason, but as individual versus institution. As a student of Kafka, Koestler, and Solzhenitsyn, he believed that truth, creativity, love, and compassion are corrupted by institutional hierarchies, and by 'patronage networks' -- one of his favorite expressions -- that contort the human spirit. He sketched out a manifesto of sorts, titled 'Conspiracy as Governance,' which sought to apply graph theory to politics. Assange wrote that illegitimate governance was by definition conspiratorial -- the product of functionaries in "collaborative secrecy, working to the detriment of a population.' He argued that, when a regime's lines of internal communication are disrupted, the information flow among conspirators must dwindle, and that, as the flow approaches zero, the conspiracy dissolves. Leaks were an instrument of information warfare."
Assange first tested his concept in 2006. Wikileaks' first post was a document allegedly signed by a Somali rebel leader calling for the assassination of Somali government officials.
In the video below he defends releasing tens of thousands of secret files about the war in Afghanistan.

Excerpts from
Video: YouTube 

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Rain

Anyone who says sunshine brings happiness has never danced in the rain. - unknown
The Rain - from the way it forms to the way it drops, it’s a marvel of nature. Anything that is dark has always been considered as closer to evil but when the clouds turn dark every face lits up with hope, lips wear smile and suddenly the whole world starts to look beautiful.

The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain. Henry wadsworth Longfellow

See this rain song (below) I like though I do not understand a single word (It is in Telugu, a South Indian language). Thought of sharing with all of you.
Movie: Varsham (Telugu)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The real flight

Since few days I have been gazing the skies and thinking about these birds. As I watched them, the whole idea of being able to fly unassisted fascinated me. Parachute jumpers and skydivers would often argue that they are the closest thing to "pure" flying but in fact they are only falling, not flying.
People watched the nature and watched and again they said this is something we can do too! Silly people!

It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird: it would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg. We are like eggs at present. And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg. We must be hatched or go bad. - C. S. Lewis

All these are clicked on my Canon EOS 1000D.
(Specifications on request)

Friends - a tribute

A friend is a blessing in disguise that holds an extraordinary power to transform your life to a meaningful and joyful journey, a journey leading to your purpose of life.
Friends have to be treasured like a prized possession. Nothing in life can be more precious than this and if by chance you lose it or take it for granted you will be at loss. Time has been kind enough to teach me the importance of carrying this prized possession throughout and then no storm will be able to stumble me down....just because friends are with me. Mere presence can make a huge difference.
Sometimes the feeling of friendship goes beyond words, the intensity of understanding and the purity of relationship start challenging words and expression. Let us pay an expressive tribute to our best friends who have stood beside us under the rain, in the storm, and on a joyful move. Let us dedicate this song by Junoon to all our friends
Yaro yahi dosti hai!!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

It is all about Words

A few days back on a news programme on NDTV, a moderate separatist representative slammed the anchor along with the whole Indian media for calling the young men on the streets “hooligans” and “trouble-makers” without understanding why they have taken to the streets. This has been the scenario throughout the mainstream Indian media. Local journalists from Kashmir are extremely careful about the vocabulary, completely opposite of the mainstream Indian media uses without pausing to think about the meaning.

It is not “peace” that ordinary people want; they stress they want a “resolution” to the Kashmir question. They want development and jobs, yes, but they also want a political solution.
The language used to describe those who protest in Kashmir is not just a matter of semantics. It is important because it places what is happening within a context. Thus, what is significant is not that people are using stones instead of guns, as some reports suggest, but that young people are daring men with guns, even at risk to their lives, because their anger and frustration cannot be contained any more. We need to comprehend this anger that fuels the “stone-pelter”.
I strongly believe that media is all about words and the use of words. It is about semantics. It is about the employment of phrases and their origins. I read somewhere that it is also about the misuse of history, and about our ignorance of history. Journalists no longer care about this element of linguistics.
The point I want to make is directed towards those journalists and media houses that are airdropped and appear only when it is all screwed up with major incident/s. It is a must for them to keep these things in mind, whether they cover Kashmir or any other conflict in India.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Kashmir's 'stone war' fueled by dissent - an audio report

Caught in tensions between India and Pakistan, Kashmir's youth have turned to an old-fashioned method of dissent: Emily Wax of The Washington Post reports.

Friday, July 16, 2010

I love to write but I ache to click

Without doubt, writing changes how a person perceives the world around him. I believe I am an average writer. I love writing though. I love words. I want my skill and professionalism in that particular area of my life to continue to grow. I feel passionate about it and it is something I will pursue the rest of my life. However, I still feel my photography, my ability to click, is my true strength. I love to write but I ache to click.
I can go days without writing a word. I cannot go days without picking up my camera. So I have been trying to decide what to do about that, trying to decide what's going out on shoots over the weekend enough or do I want more? And I always feel like I want more. One of the things I was really trying to find out was a place to combine both my writing and my photography but goes beyond. So here am I, blogging!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The BlocK

Like a lot of writers when I hit this point I am always a little worried that this will be the end--this will be the time when I lose it forever and never write again. This will be the time the words go away for good.

Even though experience has taught me that writing, like all creativity, is a cycle, I still have those moments of fear that I will never write again. There are times when I am bursting to get the words out (and cannot get them out fast enough) and times when it is more of a struggle. Not to mention times when the words won't come at all no matter how hard I try to make them. But I have always found that the words eventually come back. The writing always cycles back around.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Limits and Constraints

I wrote “Thinking inside the box” a couple of months back. I have been thinking about what influences innovation. That sparked the trigger. I analysed and was convinced that the solution must lie somewhere within the problem. I appreciate just how important it is to accurately frame the problem when working through complex issues. For past few years I have spent too much time paying too little attention to this critical step of problem solving.

Identifying all issues that could touch the problem and impact the solution is important. No rocket science there.

But what I have come to understand from research and personal observations is that the crucial step for breaking through problems with innovative ideas/solutions is to properly segment the issues into two groups: constraints and limits.

Far too often these two different issues are considered equal.

A limit, in my opinion, is an issue that has to be taken into account, as is, when solving the problem. Think of limits as the physics of the world that the problem exists within.
A constraint is an invitation to innovate. Where others see a limit, if you recognize a constraint, properly framing and identifying it, then you have a wonderful bound to innovate against.

Many a times, a constraint appears as a limit and is thus treated similarly by the problem solver. Yet, when viewed from another perspective the ‘limit’ may actually be a constraint that can yield a number of guiding points that lead to an innovative solution.

Next time you are facing a problem, try to identify what issues are constraints and what are limits. Work the list of constraints to identify the traditionally imposed bounds on the problem. The list of traditional bounds offers a well defined list of areas to innovate on, more often than not leading to a unique solution to a complex problem.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

What Are You Optimistic About?

Today's EDGE question is exactly that - WHAT ARE YOU OPTIMISTIC ABOUT?
Lots of smart people answered.

Here’s why I’m optimistic:
Not only are the world’s mightiest starting to feel the heat for not solving the problems of the oppressed world, but, our generation appears to be seeking greater meaning and fulfilment in life at a younger age. Their idea about being free is much more resolved. No confusion at all!
My optimism results from the belief that, like any other point in our history, the interests of the revolutionaries and experienced older generation are aligned with the interests of the passionate youth - a desire to be Free.
What are you optimistic about?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Everything YOU know is WRONG

"There is no war," Remington wrote to his boss. "Request to be recalled." Remington's boss, William Randolph Hearst, sent a cable in reply: "Please remain. You furnish the pictures, I'll furnish the war."
Objectivity, neutrality and unbiased approach is the mark and right spirit of journalism, but Indian media has always tried to be loyal and innocuous enough to bury the ethics of media under the ruins of so called “national interest” in Kashmir. It is this approach which makes them to cover their cameras with their eyes too when Kashmiris are victimized, abused and struggling in pain, inflicted by so called custodians of law. But when it comes to counter the often recurring “campaign supported from across”, their adrenalin runs high and they are on their toes. It also makes them vocal and articulate in their mad and ridiculous sensationalism good enough to bring two nuclear armed entities to the brink of war. Also sandwiching in between, the unheard, unseen Kashmiris.
Indian media does a ‘great’ service to their nation by projecting victim as guilty and guilty as innocent. The cries of gruesome incidents like chain of killings in the past few weeks or horrible incidents like Shopian and Kunanposhpora not strong enough to break the loud-mouthed glasses of their ‘national interests’ and clear their blurred vision. They puff chests in pride while twisting facts in the valley. Indian media today is in whirlpool of duplicity and double standards where everything goes in line with the power corridors of New Delhi and objectiveness and balanced reporting is shown the exit. About politics and their Kashmir policy it is for everyone to see, it is here where justice, human rights, democracy and all universal values are thrown out before crossing over the Jawahar Tunnel.

The establishment has been playing its role to make sure that local journalism is lazed to dust and no truth is reported to the world. This soil has produced great journalists over past few decades. Since three days these remarkable journalists of local and international news agencies are being kept unplugged and out of action not allowing them to report to their duties. Curfew passes issued to the journalists were cancelled, making their movement impossible.
In spite of these restrictions, “special” media house crews were given access to the deserted valley to report according to the guidelines provided by the state. This is an ample proof of promotion of infamous embedded journalism by the establishment. The outcome of the reportage comes up to the expectations of the state.
A typical example of double standards where Gandhian principles are talked about but even peaceful protests by an oppressed population is labelled as “agitational terrorism” deserving nothing but bullets and tear gas canisters that too directly on their chests and heads to make way for ‘complete national integration’. Where young ones are taken as enemy agents and imprecations on national security. Where Kashmiris have exclusive rights on Indian Bullets but all this appears blurr in front of ‘glamour’ of Indian media who have exclusive rights not to report the truth.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

World tight-lipped - Human Rights Violation in Kashmir

Human rights are "rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled." Proponents of the concept usually assert that everyone is endowed with certain entitlements merely by reason of being human.
Human rights are thus conceived in a universalist and egalitarian fashion. Such entitlements can exist as shared norms of actual human moralities, as justified moral norms or natural rights supported by strong reasons, or as legal rights either at a national level or within international law.
The modern conception of human rights developed in the aftermath of the Second World War, in part as a response to the Holocaust, culminating in its adoption by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948. However, while the phrase "human rights" is relatively modern the intellectual foundations of the modern concept can be traced through the history of philosophy and the concepts of natural law rights and liberties as far back as the city states of Classical Greece and the development of Roman Law. 
“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. —Article 1 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)
In Indian Administered Kashmir, there have been countless repeated cases of violation of the Geneva Convention (for the humanitarian treatment to the conflict struck). Indian security forces have consistently violated humanitarian law, and do not often comply with its provisions regarding treatment during conflict. The spree of fake encounters and killings are evidence of their contribution towards the growing human rights violations and oppression.

Above. A cop showing his might
Human rights organizations are routinely denied permission to investigate in a free manner. There is no entity known as free press. Journalists have been brutally attacked and denied access while performing their duties. Local bulletins have been asked to air the news within 10 minutes a day. Isn’t this ridiculous?
Above. Security forces beating up a man who tries to stop paramilitary CRPF troopers from desecrating the bodies of two youth killed in CRPF action 
These cases of human rights violation stem from abuse of power under repressive laws and police/army brutality unleashed against the Kashmiri people. People are taken into custody for acts that are legitimized by international human rights standards of free speech, freedom of association and assembly, and freedom of the press. Many arrests are without any legal justification. The establishment has done well in gate keeping media and projecting a different picture to their people in the Rest of India. A Kashmiri boy has been projected as a paid stone-pelter or associated with an infamous brand of outfit. This is unfair and not true.

Kashmir is at such a volatile stage that can erupt and create a shockwave destroying all the establishments built over the period of time for their vested interests. The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the whole world.
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