Thursday, 26 December 2013

Choli Ke Peeche Kya Hai?

I think we were in 8th grade when that classic super hit song came up. Seriously, what an outstanding choreography, simply out of the world and it has become some kind of a milestone in Bollywood. With the amazingly magnificent dance beats and with it's sizzling lyrics, the video song was capable enough to mesmerize any normal human being on earth that time to a great extent. Beyond any doubt it's the master of all item numbers ever. During those days the song created some kind of a hypnotizing affect on the people irrespective of any age, sex or color and the "Ku Ku Ku Ku Ku" tune continued to come out of everyone’s lips for a long long time. During every private functions and in all those Pooja celebrations,  the loudspeakers just loved to play “Choli Ke Peeche Kya Hai?” in extra loud volume.

Even though I studied in Kendriya Vidlaya, but to be honest initially I was little confused with the term Choli. After I cleared my confusion with the term, I was quite amazed that how could Bollywood be so open minded? Well, the introductory part of the song sounded little vulgar those days, but the answer to the question "Choli Ke Peeche Kya Hai?" is there in the song itself and after listening to the answer people felt that it’s actually not that embarrassing. That time I just wondered "Choli is not a very common term and sounds very technical. Even after studying in KV, if many of us were confused with the term, how other guys and people who don’t have the opportunity to communicate in Hindi would understand it?"

One day I was at one of my friends house and we were simply watching TV. All of a sudden that great song appeared on the TV screen. My friend’s father was also sitting along with us and he’s a typical Assamese man with very limited knowledge of Hindi. He asked us "Acha baba, what do you mean by Choli?"

Our level of awkwardness increased significantly and I and my friend started to stare each other. We were totally confused with how to deal with the situation. I preferred to remain silent that moment and gave the opportunity to my friend to handle it. With little shyness my friend replied "It actually means some kind of an ornament"

His dad again asked "Ornament? What kind of ornament?"

My friend replied "Like Necklace or a Mangalsutra kind of"

Even though, his dad got his answer but he looked even more confused and commented "Acha! it’s a very popular song and people play it repeatedly and in all occasions everywhere"

Monday, 16 December 2013

Bhaskar Recovery Bank

Today morning something very unusual happened. I received a call from an unknown person and he said he's from the legal department. According to him one of my friends Tridip, took a personal loan from axis bank few years ago and he didn't pay the entire amount and is absconding. Now, Tridip is my hostel junior and a very good friend. The legal guy said that Tridip gave my reference while applying for his loan. He asked for my address and also asked me to pay the remaining loan amount (Rs. 60,000), else I may get into trouble. I said "why the hell I should pay the amount? Tridip left Bangalore last year and joined a new company in Kolkata. At present he's in Australia and he called me just a few days back. So, I called to bash him up a bit, but what the hell? He said that he never ever took any personal loan from any bank and I thought it must be a different Tridip.

So, I called Girish, the guy from the legal department and asked for my friend's full name who took the loan. Aha! The surname didn't match with junior Tridip and the actual guy is a senior friend from our college. I was totally stunned, as there’s no way senior Tridip would have given my name as reference. As far as I know, he’s one of the wealthiest guy of our college and he’s a damn metal freak. He worked in Bangalore for several years and now he’s settled in his hometown in Assam. In Bangalore I met him on couple of occasions that too in some metal concerts. I messaged him in FB and a little later called him. He said he took a personal loan in 2002 and cleared it within next two years. He was even more surprised than me and said "Why the hell I will give your reference?" We both had a great laugh and then I called the legal guy once again and clarified everything. He said "You work for Onmobile Global Ltd right?" 

I replied "Yes, how the hell you know about that?"

He said "Why your name and also your company details are there in our database? Why anyone would give your reference for taking a loan? Now you will only have to repay the remaining loan amount"

My heart beats started to accelerate and then the guy asked "Do you know Jayashree?"

I asked "Now, who the hell is she?"

The guy replied "She is Tridip’s sister?"

I said "I have no idea about that"

Immediately after our conversation, I again called Tridip da to clarify. He said "Yes, Jayashree is my sister. Now, how she came into the picture?"

I said "I’ve no idea, but how the guy have all these information?"

Tridip da was very much confused and shocked. He even suggested me to put a police complaint. A little later I opened my FB profile and my company detail is clearly visible out there. Then I checked Tridip da’s profile, well his sister name is also there. But how the guy from the legal department managed to get my number? Later in the afternoon junior Tridip called me from Australia and asked for the legal guy’s numbers. The guy initially called me from a landline phone(080-43569991) and then he gave me his mobile number(9448559053) as well. Now Tridip works in telecom industry and he has good connection with all major operators. It’s not difficult for him to trace any number and within a few minutes he got the details. Well Girish, the guy from the legal department is using a BSNL number that is registered under the name "Bhaskar Recovery Bank" That sounded really interesting and we wanted to gather some more information and decided to have a conference call with the legal department. Tridip initiated the call using a WebEx number and asked the legal guy some basic legal questions. The guy got confused and he kept on asking the same question “Who are you?"

Tridip said that he works in cyber security department, Government of India and asked "What is your real name Girish or Bhaskar? Are you an authorized bank recovery agent? Are you a bank employee? You are using a BSNL number and I have top connection in BSNL. Say me everything or I will escalate it to very higher level" Tridip even told him about his exact location in Bangalore at that moment. The legal guy sounded very much confused and after sometime he disconnected the call. 

A little later Tridip again initiated the conference call and the guy said "Who are you sir? Please tell me your name and I will check if you have already paid you entire loan amount?" Well, that time he started to talk in Hindi instead of his manageable English.

Tridip said "Today morning you called my friend at Onmobile and you must remember my name"

The guy replied "Daily I call 100 people and how can I remember all the names?"

Tridip again asked "How many people from Onmobile you called today?"

The legal guy said "Please ask your friend to call me" and then he disconnected the call. We kept trying his number, but it was switched off for almost next 15 minutes and then we gave up. Now, I’m not sure whether I will receive any such call from the legal guy again? If anything interesting turns out then I will surely update on this.

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Entrance Exams Ke Side Effects

Uff! Those days were so much hectic and full of tension as well. During entrance exam seasons, usually most of the parents unintentionally use to add fuel to the fire, I mean the fire of stress and anxiety of the youngsters. During our days also many of the parents simply tried to make their offspring's life little more miserable and pathetic. Well, some of the entrance exam scenes still flashes inside my head sometimes. Few of the parents continuously used to wait outside the examination centre. As soon as their kids finished with their test or even during the middle of their test, when they used go outside, OMG! Their parents looked much more tensed and they used to ask them to eat apples, grapes, etc which they used to bring along with them. I don't know much about the latest trend, but during our time most of the parents were pretty much obsessed with either engineering or a medical career. They wanted us to appear for every possible engineering and medical entrance tests. Even though, the world was free from any sort of social media those days, but still somehow parents had all the information. 

In some cases, the guys even tried to clarify their parents "Why you need to waste money in applying for the form? I don't have any interest and also my preparation is not good enough. I’m damn sure I will not be able to score"

But the parents usually used to reply "You don't have to worry about the money, just prepare nicely and appear in the entrance test. You never know and you may get selected"

I remember one incident during one of those entrance tests. Only 10 minutes had passed after the question papers were distributed and all of a sudden one guy shouted "Sir, excuse me"

One of the invigilators went near to him and asked "Yes, what happened?"

The guy replied "Sir, I want to submit my answer sheet"

The invigilator was very much surprised and said "But you haven’t written anything, it’s completely blank"

The guy replied "Actually Sir, I have a very important work to do and I will have to leave now"

"What important work? How can any other work be more important than your entrance test?"

With little embarrassment the guy kind of murmured "Sir, I’ve some personal work"

Again the invigilator asked in a little weird manner "Personal work? At this age what kind of personal work one can have?"

The guy preferred to remain silent that moment and after a while the invigilator again asked him "If you have other important work then why you came for the test?"

He replied "Actually sir, just now remember about that"

Sir replied "But according to rule, candidates can only leave the examination hall after one and half hour"

The guy remained at his seat for that long and he looked very frustrated. All other candidates seated nearby, kept starring glances at him at frequent intervals. He didn’t write even a single word on his answer sheet and ultimately he submitted and went outside.  

My association with biology was extremely horrific and on top of that my parents wanted me to write the medical entrance test. I tried to convince them a lot, but they always used to say "It’s OK, just write the test and you never know how luck can turn your way"

Well, those statements actually made me more apprehensive and I used to wonder "What if I really get selected? Holy shit! How would I ever pass those medical exams? Even if I clear them, I would only turn up to be the most horrible doctor on earth" Those thoughts used to scare me and I never appeared in any of the medical entrance tests. One of my friend’s conditions was pretty much similar, but he couldn’t convince his parents and had to appear in one medical entrance exam. His biology knowledge was also quite terrific, but he had a very solid knowledge about the human heart. He knew everything about the heart and how it pumps blood throughout the blood vessels to various parts of the body by repeated, rhythmic contractions. During the entrance test he had written everything he knew about heart with neat and clean diagrams. After the restricted time period he felt that he had written enough and submitted his answer sheet. The interesting fact is that not even a single heart related question was asked in that entrance test.

One more interesting story about one of my good old friend and his father himself was a doctor. My friend didn’t have any interest for a career in medicine. One evening I visited him and he looked little worried. I got to know from him that the very next day he was going to appear for one of the most prestigious medical entrance tests. That particular test used to ask all multiple choice questions and they even had negative markings. My friend was not at all concerned about the outcome of his exam and his main worry was how he would have passed his time during the test?  So, my friend came up with a very innovative idea and he started to work on that. After an hour of hard work, he created a beautiful dice out of an abandoned piece of wood. He said he would use that in order to write his test.

I asked him "But each question will have 4 options, so what will you answer if 5 or 6 would be the outcome?"

He laughed and said "Very simple, I will roll the dice again"

Well, he did exactly the same thing during the entrance test the next day.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Let's Have a Tea Break

Tea is one of the most traditional drinks and it’s extremely popular across the world. I think tea is the second most popular drink on earth, next only to water. There are many varieties of tea available in the market. Even though, the basic concept remains the same, but across the world people prepares it little differently. I’m pretty much used to two types of preparation, with milk and without milk. Without milk it looks so glamorous and not only the looks, but it tastes quite awesome as well. Particularly early morning, few sips of Black tea is capable enough to refresh us instantly. It feels like consuming the Caffeine in its purest form. It goes quite well with few drops of lemon juice and many people calls it by the name “Lemon Tea” Oh! The aroma is just magnificent. Actually Black tea goes quite well with many other flavors, like ginger, black pepper, mint, etc. So it can be kind of compared with vodka, as far as the mixing is concerned. Black tea is extremely popular in the North East states of India and particularly Assam.  Well, to be honest I never ever had Black tea in my entire life and whatever I had all these years was purely Red in color and in our state it's popularly known as "Laal Saa" I’ve no idea why the hell people call it Black tea? Black coffee is understandable, but black tea is confusing, as it’s no way black.

I remember those train journeys during my engineering days. There’s a train, popularly known as BG Passenger which starts at 5 AM from our hometown and reaches Guwahati by 9 AM. The same train used to return from Guwahati at 5 PM. Those were memorable journeys, as we used to travel in groups and we even used to taste almost every possible eateries that passed by our compartment. After the holidays were over, most of the time we usually used to travel by the 5 AM local train. Even though, it was quite painful to wake up so early, but the train was very convenient and specially the timing, as we could have attended our lectures on the same day. Many people working in the government sector usually travel by that train on a regular basis. The very first thing I used to do, as soon as I used to get into the train was to have a "Laal Saa" There used to be so many Chai Walas all around with different flavors of tea. While travelling early morning, I was not very much tempted with all those yummy foods. Actually in local trains people usually use to avoid the washrooms and use it only in case of emergencies. Well, I just tried to avoid any sort of emergency situation while travelling, as early morning I'm very much vulnerable in that case.

Once I moved out of Assam, I always kind of missed the tea culture out there. In our place one can find a tea stall in almost every nook and corner and in almost every stall they also serve Black tea, as well. I still remember my 1st day in Bangalore, when in the evening I just wanted to have a cup of tea. I kept on searching and couldn’t find any tea stall nearby. I was very much frustrated and then later, one of my friend told me that tea’s available in any of the bakeries in Bangalore. Even though, the tea tastes quite good out here, but the fun and luxury of having tea in a tea stall, is very different. In some of the bakeries they even serve black tea and many people calls it "Sulaimani tea" here in Bangalore

A couple of months back, a new caterer was introduced at out office cafeteria and I was very much delighted to see “Laal Saa” out there in the counter. I asked the guy "Boss, ek Red tea dena"  "Please get me one Red tea"

The guy replied "Sorry Sir, no Red tea. Only Black tea and Lemon tea"

They use to serve tea in small and transparent glasses. I asked him "It’s purely red in color, but why you call it Black tea?"

The guy smiled and said "I don’t know Sir. People call it Black tea so we also call the same"

Again I asked "What about lemon tea? How it is different from Black tea?"

They guy replied "Both are same Sir and we only put few drops of lemon it it"

Now days, every morning I regularly have lemon tea at our cafeteria. But in the afternoon by around 4 PM, I usually have craving for a normal cup of tea, I mean tea prepared with milk. Tea is a research topic since centuries and over the years many doctors and scientists claimed tea to have health benefits. Some research suggests that drinking tea without milk is good for a healthy heart and cardiovascular system.
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