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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Winds of Change

Another year has gone past to let us enjoy another Diwali. As Cityblog has mentioned that its more about how you celebrate your life between celebrations is what matters.  Though I appreciate agents of change as it’s a common saying that only constant in this world is change. Some changes are good. In context of Diwali, awareness about damaging consequences, wastefulness and exploitative production of crackers is one welcome change. In our childhood say in 80s no one used to care and we used to spend money and create hazards uncontrolled.  Apart from this change there are few other changes i am positive about since 80s is step towards gaining rightful place in world. India is no more a pushover. It’s an economy to reckon with, brand that world is aware of.  People in India have found benefits of education (at least small % of its populace) and have opportunities to make some future beyond its status at the time of birth.  Development has percolated to hinterlands though not the required extent. Awareness of environment at least in common people is much more than in 80s. I remember travelling in PMT bus in 80s from Deccan to Vanaj and seeing ARAI hill as we see it today as a barren treeless mountain.  Today we have ARAI hill as lungs of city. So can be said about Cummins side of Warje hills, Pashan hill, Taljai hill. Agreed that greedy elements have had their say but visible differences are hard to ignore.  Kids today are much aware of their future and exposed to the latest trends in world. It can be a boon or can as well be a bane.

But on pessimistic side, some changes are dragging our march behind. Creating sufferings in life and as well have irreversible impact.  Let me start with the most damaging aspect of irreversible damage to world, in form of global climatic changes.  Rains during Diwali have been a common feature for last few years.  This Diwali is the one which falls on 13th Nov. I am sure it must be the Diwali having the latest date in an English calendar year. One would expect chilly early mornings, but it’s hot and humid today. Remember storm sandy in NY.  Terrorism and orthodoxy is another threat which we did not have in early 80s atleast not in scale which is today. Then we had cold war but it was more about posturing except from small pockets like Afghanistan, Vietnam. Thanks for small breezes like Malala, Su kyi, there is still some hope.  In India, corruption and political vacuum for lack of leadership, divisive politics have changed Indian state into a wasteful monster and uncaring for masses.  Pune as a city have grown in unfeasible manner. The ills like traffic, pollution, roads, illegal constructions, corruption have to be checked to save this city.  Personal relationships have changed, values have changed. Though we have tried to emulate western culture we conveniently ignore good lessons from west about work ethics, integrity, honesty and professionalism. In 80s we did not have mobiles but still would face no problem in communicating. We did not have facebook but we still had friends. I cannot imagine next generations going on their own using cycles till say Baneshwar or Khadakwasala as we used to do in 8th or 9th standard. How many of you will allow that in today’s traffic?

Change is not what US preferred by re-electing Obama but change was made in last election and allowed to continue. More than any other issue, it’s about inclusiveness that US people want , though conservatives may disagree but that’s order for day. When will India opt for change? Or there is no alternative. Can Kejariwal and co be agents of change? Will new development  plan make Pune a better place with Metros and light transit systems ? or will we suffer more with more water cuts, load shedding?

Another change I dread in my Cricket watching life. I am a crazy fan of Indian cricket and switch off everything else when serious cricket is on if given a choice. One factor did not change over last 22 years is that little master taking guard to open in ODI or walking on pitch two down in tests. There is expectation in air, tension amidst opposition.  Every success is taken for granted and failure is a disaster leading in all and sundry doubting his skills and intentions. But time and tide waits for no one not even HIM. Are we to witness another unwanted change? And we all know we have to some day and every time hope it’s not today.

Even Bond has changed. I mean Bond James Bond. This Bond has midlife crisis, He is more humane. He is vulnerable but yet lovable. Gone are the days when he had superhuman skills and attitude. He is no more a god. He prefers Beer over Martini. Purists have hated this change but as they say everything must change so should Bond.  Seems like its order of the day for those who spend childhood in 80s . Bond also matured in 80s. He hates 2.0 gadgets and technology (which is more real and plausible today) when he used dream unrealistic gadgets/weapons then. Is our generation too much cribbing about changes as exemplified by Bond.

Again 80s is a benchmark as thing started really changing in 90s all over due to global and national economic reasons. Luckily 80s was the decade we used to be in school. And those school years were crazy. Every generation experiences that. But by luck, we were foot soldiers of change as we went into professional education in 90s. We still enjoy Diwali in 2012 as we used to do in 80s irrespective of whether winds of change blow or not as immortalized by legendary scorpion song.

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