December 26, 2005


Well about some sanity first - I prepared whole dinner the day before yesterday which included rice, dal, baigan masala (mind you masala does not mean Everet Garam Masala)and not to forget good old chapati. Man it was a relief to have home made chapati after a long time. And girl! I have improved so much! Oooh my chapatis were looking so cute ! Long before I had disabandoned making chapatis after a major catastrophe. Dont know how suddenly the goddess of viand and victuals decided to smack some aroma and relish in the food. But let me add, overconfidence did me in - yesterday I had to do with some cauterized and carbonized cabbage.
Now not digressing further from the headline, let me talk about some insanity. With my code not working despite repeated attempts what else can you expect from me ?
On Sunday, I went to a theme/amusement park near Bangalore. Had a gala of time with the kanpur gang out here. There were lots of rides and it reminded me of good old bachpan days and sunday visits to the Ambajhari garden back home. Some of the rides at the park were grotesque and I freaked out in especially one. I was juxtaposed in a tiny chair and held to the chair with the aid of fibre bars. To fasten the bars further, a belt was tied to the seat. And then started the merry-go-round.(am wondering whether there should be a pace between merry and go round.) After a few rounds of merry my chair was turned upside down and I found myself hanging between life and death with the help of the fibre no it was the belt. For a second I felt what if belt opens or my body finds some space between the bars to obey Newton's garvitational pull - I would have a mighty fall then. And before I could recover from these random ramblings in my head I found myself upright again and my head hit the headrest with a big thud. And the process was repeated a few times. I am used to doing a lot of oohs and aahs in the rides, but found myself completely dumbfounded this time. Come think of it, what all can man do for his amusement, eh ? No wonder the ride was aptly named Insanity!

December 19, 2005

Yet another day

It was yet another day,
Sun as bright and moon as gay,
Wind was trite in its sway,
Wishes galore on my way,
The hooplah was kept at bay,
They say it was my birthday.

Yet another day of my life,
A year added in my strife,
Crossed I twenty on the wrong side,
The calender pegged another ride,
But the hooplah was kept at bay,
And they say it was my birthday.

Nah am not slate and sombre,
Guess only a bit more stronger,
Questions many I seek answer,
Time's fleece makes me wonder,
Sun was as bright and moon as gay,
They say it was my birthday.

December 01, 2005

Engineering an engineer

Yesterday my mom told me about the death of a second year student at IITK. I was more than shocked to hear this as I knew him personally through a few meetings in Kanpur. Also he was from Nagpur and I had taken some help from him regarding JEE books etc for my brother. It feels sad to see a budding engineer end his life like this. Newspapers carry articles about his suicide due to academic pressure, while his family rubbishes their claim. Whatever caused his death, the fact would remain that we lost a good engineer in the making.
One point that has yet again come to light is the academic burden on a student in IITs. The IITs are the most reverred engineering institutes in India are recognized in the world as well. The entrance exam JEE is supposed to be one of the toughest and most competitive exams in the world (this year 198,000 students appeared for 4,935 seats). Undoubtedly the people who clear this represent the creme la creme of India. Once in IIT they have a rigorous schedule of assignments, night -outs, sessionsals, etc. The competetion within the most competitive brains is all the more intense. All this leads to stress and probably depression amongst people who face failure in IIT, especially so because all of them are generally used to topping in their respective classes until now. This underlines another fact - Is the academic pressure so much that a normal student is not able to cope it ? Do we need to do something about it ? Also do we need more such reverred institutes in India so as to lessen the burden on a student writing the entrance exam ?Have a look at this figures - India's population 1,027,015,247++ and number of students clearing JEE - a few thousand - Dont we need more good engineers ? Dont tell me the number of engineering colleges in India - I know there are lots of footpath institutes but what I am talking about is great engineering institutes like IITs and good ones like NITs. Also after getting into an engineering college, should we do away with written and oral exams and instead evaluate the student throughout the semester only based upon his attendance, classwork, practicals etc ? Help out the weaker students through extra classes, etc and ensure that everybody is able to perform decently. We can even have a very flexible course work schedule and give students a greater degree of freedom in the number of years they take to complete a degree. A counter argument could be that it would result in diluting the high standards of an institute. But isnt it better than losing lives ?