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Monday, November 21, 2011

An ode to a Legend

  “Let me keep a petal of silent prayer
          In front of his soul and legacy he left with us,
         To follow and to practice,
         Though, with broken hearts”

One of the most influential people in my life is my Dad. I know this may look like a cliché for many, but I can’t keep myself away from proclaiming it as I owe him so much for whatever I am, as a human being.

In Haridas Master, I lost the second most influential person of my life. He was Pallassana’s ‘Hari Mash’.

Haridas Master was my Mathematics Teacher in 8th and 9th Classes. These were my years of transformation as a Maths student since I hated Maths till then! He definitely had a magical wand to attract his pupils towards the most prejudiced subject. In fact, my Dad used to meet him every day during his evening walks and explained him about my perceived fear of Maths. I still don’t know what magical touch had transformed me, but the results were magnificent. I’m ever indebted to him along with all other lives, he had transformed in his life time.

As it is nostalgic to remember about those formative years of life, I can’t stop writing without mentioning about the unified efforts taken as a team by those self-less teachers with great dedication. During SSLC, it was like a very well conducted orchestra and I remember the Maths Team - Sudha Teacher and Sasidharan Master under the leadership of ‘Hari Mash’! From Santhiniketan (a Tuition Centre adjacent to School), there was Jayaprakash Master too, who contributed in introducing us to lots of innovative tools and methodologies. In fact, during those days we were given exposure to today’s work sheets by ‘JP Mash’. The most important point was that these new tools were immediately accepted and adapted by our formal teachers without any resistance as they found it was very useful for the students. I don’t know how many of such teachers exist today who adapt innovations, so quickly?! Predominantly we should thank the bold leadership of ‘Hari Mash’, who initiated and led this positive change in teaching.

Another factor was the inspiration to see and enjoy ‘Kathakali’ more seriously. Over a period of time, the ‘Kathakali’ in Pallassana and ‘Hari Mash’ became two inseparable entities. I remember the tiny ‘Krishnan’ along with him among the ‘Kathakali’ audience during the annual ‘Pazhayakavu Temple Festival’. Pallassana will definitely miss 'Hari Mash' a lot during next year's festival.

As a matter of fact, in this world of Public Over-Display of Affection (it is no more PDA, now it is PODA), we shared a subtle relationship with lots of affection. We had numerous constructive discussions on various issues and on devising new techniques to introduce applied Mathematics to the young minds to inculcate a Mathematical culture and make them aware of its pragmatic applications in life.

Thanks Hari Mash…
Thanks from a million minds!
Inspiring mortals was your destiny
You will keep doing it in your absence too.
Through me and all of them, forever!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

The disaster of political hoodwinking

Whether most of our politicians lack education or not, they have arrogance in abundance with little wisdom! However, to understand the pulse of the nation, you don’t need rocket science expertise, but sheer common sense. Many a times, in the eagerness to oppose the change, our ‘Netas’ tend to forget it or deliberately ignore it.

In fact, post Anna’s movement; there has been a polarization of political class across the party lines against it and against anyone who supports it. Though this is a natural phenomenon and response, well expected from this species, what I fail to understand is the height of their foolishness like any other frog in a small well! I apologize to my readers for these harsh words as I am helpless to find any lesser word from my vocabulary. If they carefully observe the political turmoil across the world and the bloody end of those dictators who were far more powerful and influential than our stalwarts of democracy, it is vivid and clear that neither these movements can be ignored nor that the relevance and the lessons it provided can be sidelined.

Every reference of these global movements by most of our political analysts and other scholars during the Anna’s Movement on a comparison note, was repeatedly thwarted by our political class  who came on discussions across the party lines and their reasoning for their stand  was that the political scenario in India is completely different from those countries and they went ‘gaga’ over the greatness of our democracy! Post 26/11 attack, as I have been repeatedly stating through various articles, the ire of the marginalized middle class was ever growing and culminated as the evident support to the Anna’s movement and thanks to Anna and his team mates who could channelize it in the most peaceful manner unlike in most of the other countries. To the people who refer to Anna’s movement as a threat to the democracy of the country, I have only one appeal and that is to understand the world around you more practically and not through those yellow spectacles of a politician who wants to cover his assets and his lost face. The fact of the matter is that this ire towards the political species is going to remain here as long as they don't change their ways and if you resist and try to bamboozle the people, by harassing and/ or dividing the team, which only reminds people of the British tactics of ‘divide and rule’, it will boomerang with added momentum.

Yes! They are correct that it is a threat to the democratic system of our country as our current system is built on the fragile framework of regionalism and religionist sentiments and the most influential middle class have been so far kept out of our electoral political process through deliberately clever and strategic marginalization, which is of late, losing grounds drastically. The system has consistently failed our people over all these years of independence and by shying away from each opportunity to mend their ways, our politicians are shutting doors to the enormous opportunities to avert the end of the road disaster, which is not too far! Moreover, the very agitating middle class are very much aware that no one is sacrosanct in this current system which has been on a sharp climbing curve of corruption for over 60 years and nobody is an exceptionally perfect role model! So, what they look forward is only a gesture of hope to keep their spirits up and they are all aware that one ‘Jan Lokpal’ is not going to end corruption overnight in this country. If our politicians fail to read these minds of the people and stop hoodwinking at them to divert their attention by attacking a few team members of the movement, the disastrous end to this glorified democracy and the politics of religious and regional divide, will come to a grinding halt.

It will be much easier to topple democracy in our country than those autocrats and monopolies of other countries as it is more delicate and internally displaced by any standards! If it took a much difficult blood shed to replace the authoritarian governments/ rulers outside, it will take no time in a factional, unrealistic and non – representative democracy like India. The only hope now is that there is still some breathing time left, to change and transform and if you don’t listen to these final calls, you are writing your destiny of disaster and in the end, whatever you wanted to cover – up and safeguard will be unveiled like in the cases of yester year corrupt world leaders.