Saturday, March 17, 2018


26 years ago, it was a Canadian girl Severn Cullis-Suzuki who spoke to the United Nations at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in the year 1992 and left the audience completely silent and speechless for five minutes, when she was twelve years old. After about quarter of a century, once again it’s a 12 year boy Timoci Naulusala from Fiji who spoke at UN Climate Change Conference 2017 in Bonn, Germany with almost the same effect. The audience comprised of leaders of national governments, cities, states, business, investors, NGOs and civil society who gathered to speed up climate action to meet the goals of the Paris Climate Change Agreement.

This time, ‘Climate Change’ is not just the hot topic of discussion but Sustainable Development Goal No.13 that calls for urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts. It is intrinsically linked to all 16 of the other goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. To address climate change, countries adopted the Paris Agreement to limit global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius. United States of America has already withdrawn from the Paris Agreement arguing that this agreement puts US at a permanent disadvantage and will undermine US economy!

After about 25 years of ‘evolution’ adults of the world, particularly leaders of the world didn’t seem to have answers to the questions and concerns expressed by 12 year olds, on the contrary, have created a situation that generates more concerns and questions every passing day rather than the solutions to the old problems, let alone the new ones. How many more years and how many young kids would it takes us to answer two simple, basic and fundamental questions that I am putting forward for over a decade now at this same place -
Is it all worth it?
And if yes, 
At the cost of what? 

I would like to reiterate one more time a prophecy, as it is generally attributed to, for every conscientious, honest and sensible mind's identification, reflection and action -

[A conscious] Way to go...!

Tuesday, March 13, 2018


It's not about a thing, a gadget or any utility, it is about construct of the human brain to get used to something to the extent of being addicted t0 it, eventually. Bad habits like smoking or excessive drinking might have some physical ill effects and in some cases might even prove to be fatal and it is not to say that it's okay. However, an individual indulging in any such addiction will do harm to himself or herself and to his/her family, may be. But things like such addictions are the conspiracies to penetrate into the minds, brains and fundamental thinking and behaving mechanism of the society at large and make them slaves of the ideology, philosophy and intents that are not very pure in their very nature.

Human brain is an extremely sophisticated and highly developed form of a processor that receives some information, analyzes and processes it with some pre-loaded applications and generates information for storing and circulation. Consider a case of buying a new PC o Laptop for yourself wherein you decide the 'Configuration' of what you need and that combination of specific Hardware and Software gives you the result you desire. How difficult would it be for you to take full control of your 'machine' and make it behave as you want it to? Not very tough, except for some intruders like malware and viruses that could be taken care of by the Defender or the Security programs, right?

This would be the case with the 'Humans' who would fall prey to this trap of 'Advocacy' - it could be easily predefined what such Dumb species with Smart gadgets should see, read, watch and interact with. Specially customized content for a specific purpose could be made available 24x7 and almost free as it is the investment of those conspirators to develop their audience to act in a programmed manner on their orders, as and when required!

It's not too late though, Wake up NOW and understand the game. Let us not surrender to Dopamine but learn about it and make well-informed decisions. Our Brain is not gifted to us, we have earned it with evolution of hundreds of thousands of years. It would not be worth to put it to service of a plotter who makes a puppet of you. You are Your-SELF that has taken birth and grown as 'YOU' and its being should not get affected by a lousy WA message or a like on FB or a cheap comment on IG, it is much bigger and deeper than that.

Explore your-SELF, be kind with YOU, give your-SELF that s-p-a-c-e and RESPECT because you are UNIQUE. Everybody can be Anybody but not YOU! Never ever lose the identity - your individuality to stand apart, have an opinion and voice it loud. Get rid of those useless time-lags of aimlessly and helplessly lingering on your screens; get a life...!

(Awaken) Way to go...

Sunday, March 11, 2018


Whenever I make some money, the first thing I make sure is that I have enough groceries and kitchen supplies for my home to be fed with for a period till I could find another opportunity to make some more money. Second thing I take care of is of my laundry as I would need good, presentable, if not very lavish or exclusive, clothing in case I am supposed to attend any professional meeting or social event. Third priority place is taken up by house-related liabilities including payment of all the services my household requires. This is what is simplified and generalized as basic necessities or fundamental needs for a civilized individual – Roti, Kapada aur Makan – Food, Clothing and Shelter, as they have termed it.

Once these needs are taken care of, I assume myself worthy of considering items that go under ‘luxury’ that includes grooming myself with all those Personal Care products For Men the market keeps flooding with and the TV commercials with female(?) models keep flaunting incessantly. Once I am done from my head – with the Hair Gel that makes me look sexy (really? Now I believe that Princess and the Frog story!) to my toes – with those pointed Shoes that would make me feel like walking in heaven (is that the reason they cost a fortune?), I graduate myself to a higher step on the social structure. However I understand that I would need some more accessories to make my stay longer and comfortable at that level of society and then I consider upgrading my Infotainment – TV, Smartphone, Laptop and Tab.

When I finish raising bars of all my personal standards, I look around and find some domestic things that need to be fixed for other people’s sake as they also deserve some comfort being my home-mates, let alone relatives, some even blood-ones! With a benevolent attitude of a philanthropist, I approve all those petty tasks to be carried out and ensure their reimbursement against a detailed, transparent report of the work done even for fixing of a blocked kitchen sink. The point I am trying to make here is, even a generous and big-hearted person like me puts my own personal luxuries before the needs of other households who are doing everything to make my life easy, if not meaningful, and even provide a purpose for my ‘Being Human’ – a though that I would like you to hold and ponder upon for a while!

Up-to-date from tip-to-toe and armed with all the state-of-the-art infotainment gadgets, I step out of the house to find my old car waiting to be warmed up for the day in the parking and I make a mental note to change it on the first opportunity of affording a new one. Now, as I am not as fortunate as my neighbor to enjoy a luxury sedan with plush seats, roomy beige interiors and powerful torque, I prefer a long route to my destination that has a smooth, wide road with minimum obstacles including traffic signals. My GPS say it has tolls, but that’s okay if I could save on time, after all time is money, you know!

On the wide, less-populated, relatively quite road, listening to classic music on my way, I remember that I need to put a new frame to my Grandfather’s Portrait and hang it high on the wall of my living room. Just the memory of my Grandfather lightens up my mood and I get into my favorite act of playing with memories of my childhood with my Grandfather. As my heart feels with proud about my Grandfather and our glorious past, I decide to embellish his portrait with the biggest, most exclusive frame available in the town and make all visitors to my house look high and admire my Grandfather’s deeds and my aesthetic sense and rich taste to spend a fortune on a single frame that upholds my ‘Great’ Grandfather’s memory.

Till this point I am doing well by following the theory of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and have almost reached the Self-actualization state with self-esteem, if not self-transcendence with my grandfather and wondering – if I am a civilized individual (Huh?) and this is true with me, it must be for others. Together all of us make a Society and societies make Nations, do same principles apply to the nation at large?

This bad habit of asking disquieting questions when everything is going well is another thing I have inherited from my Grandfather who was a School Teacher!

While I am lost in trance of a journey from down-memory-lane to dream-of-future days-to-come, a thought strikes my mind just like a lightening – would my School Teacher Grandfather have ever approved of such extravaganza to glorify his picture for public appeasement? And does that make even a bit of a difference to Him, to me or to what I have inherited from him? Besides, wouldn’t this wasteful act of mine put my claim of inheritance of his values in jeopardy? If not, is this squandering worth it and at the cost of what? Won’t it be more sensible of me to preserve, digitize and publicize all His Social, Cultural, Spiritual, Literary and other works? Wouldn’t He be happier if I could do that instead and uphold His emblematic image high by leaving alone His corporeal picture in modesty?             
My Grandfather always does this. Whenever He appears He will always awaken the soul, shake the conscience and ask disturbing questions unnecessarily. Why He cannot just sit quietly in the most expensive ornamental frame I am buying to put him in? Why he need to probe into the farmer’s plight and the buyer’s remorse and the consumerism trap and the time-saving light-speed vehicles and the pro bono policies and their Idols, Statues and Memorials… and what not?

My life would have been easier haven’t I inherited that keeping conscience attitude of His, isn’t it…? Alas, I am descendant of a (Old) School Teacher who retired as ‘Head Master’ but never stopped being one!

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Chi NA…?

Not every Chinese thing needs to be banned or looked down upon. Nothing is perfect and nothing is completely hopeless, the optimist says. It’s up to the vision and perception of the ‘Seer’ who looks at it.

Recently this animated movie ‘Joy’ is making rounds on Social Media that is being wrongly credited to the Pixar studios – makers of Oscar Winning ‘Piper’, some are even calling this ‘Piper’ itself, what a pity!

With over 266 million customers, is the largest online retailer in China. To celebrate the coming year of the DOG, has released an animation starring its mascot, JOY – "A Joy Story: Joy and Heron".

No doubt this purely is an advertisement with absolute commercial intents and interests by the trader from a country that believes in mass-production at any cost; the story and message is too cute to be ignored!

Am I promoting a hard-core capitalist Chinese trader through this post or have I switched my beliefs and principles? Any conclusion in haste would do injustice to my position if the post is not read till the end.

I have been writing on CSR, HR, PR and integration of all these elements in a manner that would be not only acceptable but adorable. Branding-Communication, CSR-Consultancy and Project-Presentation are the disciplines that are my professional passions and I recommend anything that elaborates any of it.

If we can leave aside the Management jargons like AIDA, BANT, Churn or Footfall for a while and look at it from a simplistic perspective – A returning Satisfied Customer that pays you more with pleasure without any obligation is - Brand Equity.

On the other hand, taking from the ‘haves’ to fulfill the survival needs of ‘have-nots’ out of pure compassion brings back the ‘profit’ to the ‘haves’ in multiple units which could have never been achieved with the same amount of resources plus efforts applied by the ‘haves’ themselves is - CSR!

So now it should be very clear why I intend to share ‘Joy’ with you here; it makes my job easy!

By the way ‘Chi’ means Soul, Inner-self, Life-force or Essence; so I don’t think there’s any reason to reject every ‘Chi’-nese thing as long as it delivers ‘Value’! More about ‘Value’ and its dimensions in another post…

Till then, Do your job, Don’t Rob, Enjoy and Be Joy!

Way to go…

Thursday, March 1, 2018


At a point of time when humans started settling with the advent of farming, society started taking a form to replace the previous groups and troops of hunters and gathers. As Society matured being more articulate and civilized, various ethnicities from different parts of world emerged as the identity of population of those territories. This ‘sense of belonging’ to a certain fraternity paved way for some customs, traditions and cultures that proved instrumental in the evolved form of society at large.

Although ‘Group Cohesiveness’ has always remained the backbone of cultural celebration, the fundamental elements that provided the occasion for festivals in early period could be largely traced to change in seasons – to bid farewell to an ending season and welcoming the new season at their cusp. India, owing to its geographical location, environmental conditions and culture, enjoys maximum (6) seasons and therefore has maximum number of festivals in a year. India’s cultural, communal, geographical and historical diversity adds to the total and India takes the cake as the most celebrated nation of the planet when it comes to festivals – another reason to feel proud as an Indian!
However, it has become imperative to understand the spirit of the festivals and the intent of our forefathers who initiated them with a common purpose – Cohesiveness with a heightened sense of belonging, teamwork, interpersonal and group-level interaction. No doubt Festivals are meant to be celebrated and Festival without Celebration would be like School without Education, just another ritual! But at the same time, with evolution of millions of years and the condition of the only liveable planet known to Humans for which only Humans are to be blamed, we should look at it in a different context and more consciousness. And when I say ‘we’, I mean Homo sapiens, without any classification of even color of skin - let alone caste, creed, cult, region or religion.

Today is Holi and I am sure every Indian on the planet is enthused with the thought of playing Holi and is already imagining the rainbow of colors he or she would look from head to toe tomorrow. I not only understand but even reciprocate the fervor of the festival and would surely love to soak myself in all available colors; I would make sure that I do not use any Chemical Colors that can harm any being or the environment and secondly, would use minimum, if not ZERO, water for the celebration. Why I insist on not wasting the water is because I don’t think that Cape Town is far away and I am not at all concerned with water crisis happening on the farthest point from where I live. I cannot say that because we all humans are connected in more than one way, we are children of Mother Earth. Watch the video and try to empathize with the situation. Don’t say that you are not bothered, because if we say that now nobody will come to our rescue if we, god forbid, find ourselves in such a situation.

If you think that is quite a heavy stuff for such a festival of light mood, another interesting and little naughty tradition of this festival is saying whatever comes to your mind for anybody without hurting the sentiments as it will be accompanied by a modest request, 'Bura Na Mano Holi Hai' - Don't mind, its on the occasion of Holi I am saying this without any ill-intent!

In the digital era where it is taken as unsophisticated, impolite and uncivilized to physically meet a person, let alone touching and hugging unless you are a foreign diplomat, I thought it would be interesting to imagine how some happening entities would think about their situation and Tweet it with a Hashtag – a mandatory thing one should do to prove its existence [in fact, both AADHAR and Certificate of life for pensioners would be replaced by a person’s Tweets as proof of his/her survival, it seems] – this is how it would look, I guess!

By the way, do I need to add a disclaimer here that this is absolute fictional work of creative imagination and any relation with anybody living or dead is a pure coincidence? (A little Pun intended!) So here we go with #BuraNaManoHoliHai –

#SwacchaBharat – @rallyforrivers, @CBIINdia, I am not sure about my banks but Indian Banks are being cleaned for sure! – Maa Ganga.

#IndianMedia – @Sridevi, Thank you Sri Devi ji! – Your highly obliged fan! – Nirav Now NRI.

#IndiaPolitics - @PrashantKishor, Send me your proposal with estimate - RaGa.

#CBIINdia @NiMo, Hi Bro, come back soon man, feeling little lonely ‘in’ here – Karti Chidambaram.

#IndianMedia – @NiMo, @Sridevi, We regret our profession and trivial contribution vis-à-vis yours! – Yash Pal [Renowned Indian Scientist] and T.S.R. Subramanian [Former Cabinet Secretary].

#IndiaPolitics - @KamalHassan, क्या 'आप'भी राजनिती बदलने आये है जी? एक बात पहेलेसे समझ लीजिये, किसीपेभी 'विश्वास' मत करिये गा ! - आम आदमी.

#ManKiBaat - @PM_MODI, Sir, when would you do OUR Man ki baat, let alone our Kam ki baat? – Indian Farmer.

#Interview - @SharadPawar, काका मला वाचवा – AP [or RT?] @PMO, Can we have the script? - Republic [of India?]

#IndiaPolitics - @NitishKumar - हम पहलेसेही जानते थे इ ससुरा मांजी हमराही मौंटन म्यान है गुड्बघ! - लालू.

#Cryptocurrency - @BitCoin, I understand you are the new kid on the block, but can you be minted? - New 10 Rupee Coin.

#CSRIndia - @Corporate, If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts! - MCA.

#ToI @RKLaxman, You muted me for years and made me an innocent bystander witnessing everything helplessly, now when they are taking me for a ride, where are you and what would you do? - Common Man.

And yes, please feel free to add your imaginations in the comments if you are also inspired by reading these 'intimate secrets', nothing here would be charged nor trolled (who said 'not even read or noticed?'), I believe! After all it’s Holi, Don’t mind Bro, you know!

May the Wise Colors of Rainbow Peacefully Glitter Your Life!

Way to go...

Saturday, February 10, 2018


Yesterday I was the speaker of an opening session at a Two day National Conference on Sustainability by Economics, History, Politics and Public Administration Departments of St. Mira’s College for Girls, Pune. The Conference had Anupam Saraph as the Key-note speaker and it couldn’t have been better. Saraph Sir set the standard of the conference very high at the outset by his candid and upfront discourse that touched upon every possible aspect of sustainability and public policy making. Although many of his statements were debatable and would not be seen in good light by armies of ‘India Today’ by and large, it doesn’t deprive any of it for their merit and logical outlook.

The Four Principles our Constitution’s Preamble is based upon – Justice, Liberty, Equality and Fraternity – were emphasized by him throughout his speech as well as in his response to the questions from the audience and his not having a AADHAR card himself proved his standpoint and grit for his belief and position! He went on to invite the audience to visit tool developed to facilitate and send an email to elected representatives of your constituency about any AADHAR inconveniences and issues, in response to a question about it.

Although the Synopsis of the Key-note would be a good idea, I will not dare to do that for two reasons – I might look like a journalist who uses his reporting liberty to twist the statements and facts of a speaker and secondly, I may not be eloquent enough to do justice to what the speaker said, intended and meant. However I must mention three things here that I thought I learnt, or at least looked at from a different perspective in new light and wish that all the young girls in the audience took it to their heart, for these are the citizens of nation that will decide the fate of this largest democracy of the world that would be youngest of the earth by 2020, statistic says!

Citing the reference of ‘(The New) Confessions of an Economic Hitman’, Saraph Sir presented a critic view of so-called development yet maintained not to look like an anti-development protestor activist! Seemingly an anti-Make-in-India perspective, he managed to further the agenda of protecting the environment from pollution and made a commendable effort to bring out the contradictions in the schemes of Make-in-India vis-à-vis Swachh Bharat.

The theory of sovereignty to Common Purposes like an open market where the traders meet to exchange their commodities in excess reminded me of my all-time favourite movie ‘The Green Beautiful’ and I was enlightened with the meanings of Government and Governance and their expected functions as the facilitator of the Public Interest ONLY and not assuming the role of an Agent of Development as there is no agreed or concrete definition of the concept ‘Development’, it being highly subjective.

The best part was concerning the ‘Growth’. Any natural organism has a specific cycle of life governing its ‘Growth’ and beyond a certain point no organic entity ‘outgrows’, be it a human or a tree! If the cells in a body cross the potential of their growth and start multiplying uncontrollably, it is called Cancer – a terminal disease that is out of reach for even the most advanced diagnostics to be detected at early stage or for any remedial science on the planet to cure completely. That’s the reason a ‘successfully’ treated Cancer patient is termed as Disease-free temporarily, not in the pink of health as before.

If unprecedented and rampant growth of any sector or any factor is promised, it is inviting Cancer – is the warning every conscientious, sensible and sensitive human should mind well and it would be desirable to also bear in mind that everything is a trade and you can get something that you don’t have only by trading something that you have! And that’s where the two fundamental questions I keep on advocating come into the picture – ‘Is it worth it?’ and if yes, ‘At the cost of what?’

With such an ideal opening that any conference would desire, followed by open interaction between the Speaker and the audience, I was little bit nervous to follow the suit. And to add to my nervousness, Murphy’s Law took its toll and despite my preparation as usual to counter any situation that might arise, I had to borrow the college laptop for audio-visual elements in my presentation to be effective. However the embedded movie clips in my presentation refused to play with the flow and had to be played independently by temporarily exiting the PowerPoint show, changing the projection and getting back to resume the show by reversing the sequence. So the principle lesson of the session was, henceforth go for a HDMI cable to connect all the audio-visual interfaces of the laptop to the projector in one go!

I represented ‘Shivaji Trail’ once again and I designed and developed my presentation under the main theme of ‘Historical Legacies – Contexts of Public Policy’ to present Shivaji Trail’s endavor of Fort Restoration with an apt title – ‘Restoring Heritage – Dynamics of Preservation’ and I started with... 

“All the subject themes and topics of the conference are too vast to fit in a single 40 minutes session but that is the format of such conferences nobody could get a concession for and I will try my best to present the topic within that timeframe. Being a Student of Architecture, I have inherited the philosophy of ‘Form follows function’ from my mentors and being a Project Management Professional; I prefer experiential ‘hands-on’ learning and hence would take a pragmatic approach than academic. In simple words, I am not here to argue on who or what’s at fault instead I would present what we have done and how it could be seen from a policy making perspective. I can assure you that in the next 40 minutes you would be introduced to many interesting facts that you would love to ponder and act on later.

Historical Legacies are about places and structures – that are tangible as well as people and cultures – that are intangible. And Public Policy and Governance encompasses almost everything including making of a public policy and its implementation. For the purpose of this session of the conference we will discuss only Forts – particularly forts of Maharashtra with reference to Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj as the ‘Historical Legacy’ and our experiments with Fort Restoration drives, followed by a quick overview of CSR Act and its provisions.”

After giving a brief account of Shivaji Trail’s journey and need-based initiatives in progress, CSR perspective was presented in a jiffy and then I described a Sample CSR Project of Heritage Restoration. I concluded my presentation with the words, “These are just few outcomes of Single Phase of the whole Restoration Drive and the DPR will take a holistic perspective of the Economic, Environmental, Political and Social aspects of the entire activity to prove that ‘The Whole is Greater than the Sum of its Parts!’”

Mukund Utpat, my old pal accompanied me for this conference and caught the action on camera and I would prefer not to thank him out of sheer formality but I must admit that I feel indebted for the evening that we had together with another good old friend Sanjay Lahoti to discuss a new project for Shivaji Trail and if you watch this place regularly, you will find the details about it eventually! By the way, it is not the Durg Pooja on Sunday, 25 February 2018 that is set to make history once again...

At the end of the day, although a content feeling of missions accomplished and milestones achieved kept lingering in our minds, we missed the man-of-the-mission Milind in our midst as he was outstation, TIM as he is not with us anymore and the realization and responsibility of answering the call of the captain left us thinking over the ‘Good Night’!

Stay tuned... It’s really a long Way to go!

Sunday, January 28, 2018


"The future lies with the democratization of energy. Every household a proud producer as well as consumer of energy, that's the democracy of energy." - Amar Inamdar

In complete agreement with the baseline of this idea, I always believed that any being that consumes, can contribute and this basic democratic idea is reflected in all my work here and there. For example, see this recent submission for 'Clean Energy Lab for Not-Profits' incubation program contest.

The Clean Energy Lab is India’s first incubation program to support high potential ideas for creating research and evidence based large scale policy impact in clean energy invited exceptional ideas to create policy action on clean energy in India. I was one of the participants who presented their ‘Clean Energy Idea’ and my idea based on ‘basics’ and ‘democratization’ supported by ‘innovation’ and ‘smart data’ couldn’t make it to the final 5, though; here's the Hypothesis I presented as preamble of my idea - A Hypothesis of Clean Energy Lab Fellow

Way to go...!