Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Did you jump the gun, Mr Narayana Murthy?

Yes, none other than Mr Narayana Murthy has uttered those words of praise. The man who has contributed significantly in making a brand out of 'Bangalore', one who has taught thousands that dreams can turn into reality, the simple guy with his head firmly on shoulders despite his phenomenal success, has declared that the new Chief Minister is well on his way to making Bangalore a better city!
So, could there be no substance at all when a leader of his stature makes so positive a statement? Perhaps, there is substance in it. He must be seeing things from a different angle from what an ordinary blog like Clearway sees. And that possibly is the reason why I'm not convinced if the new government really deserves the dose of optimism that comprises his comment! For someone like me, there needs to be concrete evidence right in front of my eyes that things have taken a turn for the better. That, probably, is the reason why I'm not yet where he is!
Still, what has actually been done to evoke such an upbeat response from the Infosys guy? Is it Kumaraswamy's promise to turn Bangalore around in 3 months when the Siemens Chief decided to put his expansion plans on the back burner? Or, is it the way Kumaraswamy and his better half enjoyed a ride in the Metro Rails of New Delhi and asserted that Metro was precisely what the Doctor ordered? Or, is it, to quote Narayana Murthy himself, that he was "grateful to the government for approving the Infosys proposal to acquire land at Sarjapur. We will soon buy land through KIADB, at market rates. We are looking at around 845 acres” that made Mr Murthy an exalted person?
Well, I'm confused. But Clearway is pretty sure it's the last of the three reasons - for the simple reason, that the two quotes were from the same man, spoken at the same occassion. And Mr Murthy was the victim when a peasant called Deve Gowda made him quit his post over the land issue. Is it not only natural that Murthy feels pacified with the goodwill gestures by the new Government?
Rightly so. Murthy has every reason to be jubilant. But, to attribute the gesture to a "reformed face" of a government that has let the roads overflow with vehicles and fill with smoke before mulling over an alternative form of public transport, with the Chief Minister still in his Probation period, might just be a bit too much to digest! Of course, as has already been stated (almost akin to a disclaimer), Mr Murthy might be seeing things from a different perspective from Clearway's and hence might be viewing a different picture - but Clearway is NOT Infosys and it adamantly has an opinion that is different from that of the IT giant's mentor!

Friday, March 24, 2006

A Hero called Bhagat Singh

Sometimes, in our obsession with pretty ordinary mortals, we tend to forget legendary martyrs. I was reminded of this day by an e-mail with a link. It really is sad that this is all that we could do in remembrance of Bhagat Singh. Don't we pay too much attention to the contradictary statements of a confused old man and to the stunts of a hyped up woman, who has desperately tried to make a selfless sacrifice of a dire situation that could have turned out to be really messy, not just for herself but for the party as a whole?
Yahoo News has something to say about Bhagat Singh and what he means to what India today is. By the way, what is March 23 called?

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Well, it Works: Lodge Your Complaints - Part 2

There is reason to be optimistic - it is learnt that the Bangalore Police has responded to the complaint lodged on-line by one of the close associates of Clearway (Check the previous post for details).
The police does seem to have taken the complaint seriously; an Inspector had called up earlier and checked the verasity of the complaint with the person who lodged it on the net, Clearway was told. Then, he seems to have assured our associate that strict action would be taken against the offender and that he would be 'taught a lesson'.
I sometimes wonder why people should be so pessimistic about the functioning of the government mechanism, after all! Is it all the fault of institutions or is it the negligence of the individual that adds insult to injury? Could there be better and effective solutions to problems if the citizen chose to be proactive?

Saturday, March 18, 2006

"Lodge Your Complaints"

In this day of hectic competition, it becomes inevitable for blogs to keep innovating. Clearway tries to stay in the race with its new section - "Lodge Your Complaints", at the top right corner of this space. The section is all about lodging complaints against beasts that are let loose in the society.
We see a sea change in the way things are done these days - and lodging complaints is just one among them. Bangalore City Police, I was told, has been running a site where lodging complaints has been made a breeze - sweeter than drafting a mail! A close associate of Clearway has spotted an extremely rash driver on the spree on the roads of Bangalore - and all that the person did was to reach for the site and mail the details of the driver to the City Police. While the actions taken on the basis of the complaints remain to be seen, there is less room for cynicism, given the care taken in setting the complaint system up and running!
Clearway hopes to collect similar information and log it in this space - and invites contributions in this regard, from readers. The laws of the land definitely do not allow citizens to shoot such dangerous beasts on the spot - but the arms of the law do seem to be extending their reach; and it's upto the citizen to strengthen it!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

"Clearway Terrorism" - BODIES FOR SALE!

Clearway introduces a brand new section - "Bodies for Sale" - this March. Clearway offers dead bodies at special discounts in honour of the "Fighters". Clearway refuses to use any sensitive terminologies that may bias public opinion - so, the terms "Terrorists" or "Cannibals" or "Jihadi's" wil not be used in this section.
While appreciating the "Fighters" on their valiant efforts at sucking the lives out of young bodies and converting them to corpses, Clearway was lost in rewarding the actions of the "Fighters" with a suitable prize. The decision was finally made to obtain the dead bodies from the "Sites of Action", preserving them and awarding the bodies to the "Fighters" themselves. We shall make the utmost efforts to preserve the corpses in manageable conditions, without any further decay. However, it must be noted that it may not be possible to deliver our "Product" in the best of shapes, as the bodies may be damaged, mutilated or may already have been twisted out of shape when the operations were actually carried out. Some of the corpses may even have decayed slightly - Clearway tenders its personal apologies, in those cases, to the "Fighters". In such cases, we offer Special Discounted rates - and depending on the availability, we may have promotional schemes like "One Body Free for every Two Purchased".
As an introductory offer, Clearway offers 'Early Bird Prizes' - to enable us maintain sufficient stock of bodies in our Deep Freeze facilities, Clearway announces a Cash Reward of Rs 1 Lakh for Terrorists who carry out fresh attacks and provide us with young, tender bodies that are below the age of 10. We encourage Terrorists to take special care in their attacks so that at least, the skulls of their victims are not too badly damaged - we tolerate a damage level of 25% to the cranium but not more than that. Rs 50,000 will be awarded to the Terrorists who can manage to bring in "Live Victims with No Limbs" - it goes without saying that the other body parts are supposed to be intact, at least, attached to the main body and not totally cut off. A bumper prize will be annouced shortly for the most successful terrorist who can bring in 100 bodies without their heads - at one lot! Please avoid dripping of blood all the way - the smell of blood sometimes, may put prospective bidders off (though some of them actually like the smell of blood).
Expect Bonanzas to be announced shortly in this space - we would have Bids, where the highest bidder of bodies and body parts would be given the opportunity to be where he covets the most - he/ she could spend 3 nights and two days with the dead body of his or her choice and do whatever he/ she wants to do - the only request is to return the body to Clearway as it was taken delivery of.
Clearway expects a high response rate from Terrorists all around the world to participate in this "Once in a Death Time" offer and make the most of their special skills in sucking lives out of mortals!
Post (Mortem) Script: While all care was taken at not having 'sensational words' printed in this space, the word "Terrorist" somehow made its way here. However, Clearway views it as a recognition of the uncanny dexterity of the Terrorist to get to any space unnoticed and rip it apart, wash it with blood and decorate the place with pieces of flesh, bones and nerves. Long Live the Terrorist!

Picture Courtesy: Rediff.com

Friday, March 10, 2006

Traffic Managers show the way!

It's rush hour. There's traffic everywhere, buses overloaded, all set to topple. Bikes are in a frenzy, cars impatient, bicycles cornered and pedestrians trapped right in the middle of the roads in their futile efforts to cross over. Squealing brakes, blaring horns, gushing smoke, heat, dust, the smell of fuel all over in the air almost nauseating . . . a typical scene in any metro or even a suburb in the peak hours of the mornings.
It does take brave hearts to block the burgeoning traffic flowing dangerously, almost breaching the banks of the road. And it was evident this morning that our Nation does have a lot of brave hearts. Amidst all the commotion, a couple of traffic constables were busy at work, blocking the traffic, barricading the road and . . . drawing lines on speed breakers! What I loved the most in the scene was their having chosen such an auspicious time for the ritual - a demonstration of how India is a blend of the traditional and the modern! With all the buzz about 'Flying Roads' and 'Underground Rails', India still respects the nuances of astrology when it comes to matters that are as critial and crucial as marking speed breakers with white paint! Apparently, the Traffic Department must be having its own in-house astrologer who predicts the most auspicious of times of the day and dictates which roads are to be targetted. It is definitely admirable that the Traffic Department never got distracted by logic or science and trashed such intangible, insignificant considerations as 'peak hour traffic'. It was evident that they firmly believed no Road Work was to be done at nights, which is the time of the demons!
Kudos to the Metro Development Authorities; these acts reinforce our beliefs in you, about your capabilities in managing relatively simpler tasks as 'Metro Rails' or 'Complex Flyovers' to ease traffic congestions; you have been brave in the face of such herculean challenges as putting up barricades and creating art works on the roads, testing the tolerance levels of commuters simultaneously.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

News Makers - and their Secret Aspirations

Our News Makers session today features four prominent personalities - those who have contributed significantly to their own fields of action.
The first place naturally goes to President George Wicked Bush. He has created a storm in the news papers today, by commenting on the weather in India. Mr Bush has called it 'Beautiful' - yes, Mr Brush does seem to have tried to paint a beautiful picture of the Nation, who is apparently excited at his first visit to this land. But the reasons for the excitement in the media circle are not all that obvious. They should have known, by now, that the Indian weather was beautiful indeed, rather than waiting for a crusader to announce it to them.
News maker 2 is our Crime Minister, Mr Singh. He has been brave enough to break protocol and welcome W. Bush right at the foot steps of Air Force 1. In fact, rumours have it that Mr Singh climbed up the ladder even as the doors of the plane were opening. Mrs Laura Bush seems to have bumped straight into Mr Singh as she stepped out of the plane. Fortunately for Mr Singh, Mrs Kaur seems to have a lot of trust on him. What happens in the White House when Mr Bush returns to the US, however, remains to be seen.
We take a break from Political Big Wigs and deviate on to the field, for our Fuse Breaker 3 position - yes, it goes to Ian Chappell. We all know that he has a rather big mouth; this day, he told the world that he is having difficulty in shutting it up. Chappell has admitted that he worked as the Personal Secretary of 'Dada' Ganguly, apart from being the roach of the Indian Cricket Team. In his tenure as Ganguly's Secretary, Chappell seems to have pried into the Accounts of 'Dada' and seems to have noted down some figures. Now that Ganguly needs no more of his service, Chappell seems to have thought it fit to reveal the Bank Account Details of his former Master. The Board of Confusion and Controversy in India has taken note of this rather indecent behaviour and has decided to send a Masking Tape, a Zip or a Lock to shut Chappell's big mouth.
Finally, we return to Politics in search of our King Joker 4 and land up right on the streets with Former Crime Minister, Mr Deve Gowda. Being rather surprised at having spotted Mr Gowda in the streets along with college students who were on a strike because their hostel taps weren't functioning properly, we checked with the former Chief as to the purpose of his stance. It was then that he realised that he was among the wrong mob - he originally wanted to be part of the Anti-Bush rally when he started from his residence. However, on the way, he seems to have noticed a gang with the card - "CLEAR THE BUSHES", which was originally intended to protest the lack of maintenance of the Hostel gardens! Mr Gowda, by mistake, thought it was a protest against our News Maker 1 and promptly stood in the line.
News Update:
It is learnt that each of the four News Makers have secret aspirations for one anothers' posts. Details are as follows:
1. Mr Bush seems interested in Chappell's position as the Coach of the Indian Team; it is a rather good prospect for Indian cricket as, then, he may announce a crusade against every other Cricketing Nation and infuse the Indian team with "Killer" Instinct.
2. Mr Deve Gowda aspires for a room in the White House; that is good for India as well, as Mr Gowda would certainly destory the US economy and being it down to its heels. Chances of India becoming a Developed Nation increase as well!
3. Mr Singh wants to participate actively in Karnataka Politics. Well, that is definitelty good for Bangalore. Now that we know how Mr Singh has an unexplained affinity towards climbing up the stairs of Air Planes, we can definitely look forward towards many more International Air Terminals being opened at Bangalore at extremely short notices.
4. Mr Chappell says he would become the Coach of the Indian Parliament! Yes, he would, by all means, bring about some discipline in the House; he may also reveal the Bank details and the financial statuses of Ministers, competing vigorously with the private Television Channels. However, the Election Commission must exercise extreme caution - Mr Chappel may effect a Coup against the existing Prime Minister, throw him to Kolkota and being someone from Bangalore to head the Nation!
PS. It is a mere coincidence that each of the four News Makers would be better off in positions other than their own!