The best way to know the self is feeling oneself at the moments of reckoning. The feeling of being alone, just with your senses, may lead you to think more consciously. More and more of such moments may sensitize ‘you towards you’, towards others. We become regular with introspection and retrospection. We get ‘the’ gradual connect to the higher self we may name Spirituality or God or just a Humane Conscious. We tend to get a rhythm again in life. We need to learn the art of being lonely in crowd while being part of the crowd. A multitude of loneliness in mosaic of relations! One needs to feel it severally, with conscience, before making it a way of life. One needs to live several such lonely moments. One needs to live severallyalone.

Wednesday 31 December 2014



It was 365 days ago, the Tuesday on December 31, 2013, the day of symbolic transition of time, from one to the next milestone, from a year to the next, on the timescale, designed to keep track of times our lives pass through, that I was writing a poem, ‘A Year Goes By’, musing on the days the year had for me.

Doing so is always existentially individual. And here is the Wednesday of December 31, 2014, with an hour left.

Like any other event of life, it is for the perspectives that what we think on this day, how we reflect on the days gone by. Practically, it changes nothing much, apart from the psychological symbolism that gives us the frame to look back, to reflect on - on what was a year in life, a capsule of time, adding to the story of our existence, adding stories as the year proceeded, adding elements as the days changed the calendar entry.

And it is never a zero-sum game – positive or negative, you gain something, in terms of experiences – vital enough to guide you if you can hear the call.

I had not thought of any resolutions on December 31, 2014, like I always did. Yes, I had my reflections and accordingly had certain stopovers to head to, but there was nothing in the realm of ‘pinned’. Instead, it was living life fully, my way, every day.

How successful I have been? Now success is a relative term and should be left to personal, intimate considerations. Like every life, I had my share of good and bad and routine but I didn’t see any point, like always, to assess my life in ‘gain or loss’ terms. I could do what I had thought to do. I could not do certain things that were in my mind. But I could continue doing certain things that I needed to do.

I wrote freely, extending and building on my way of life, going deeper inside me, on the journey to reclaim me that had its origin on a day, exactly four years ago, December 31, 2010, a setback that first pushed me to question my identity vehemently, setting me thus on the path to find who I was before the reason of the setback had taken over my thinking, and later on, became the light to guide me to go even deeper inside, in my own company. Yes, the identity crisis was over a long ago but identity is a lifetime love.

2014 saw definitive development on my books, two of them I am working on. The flow was good initially and I had thought I would be able to finish the drafts by the year end. But, then the writer’s block crept in (if I can claim to have one J). So, while the thoughts kept on building and finding space in my notes, the drafts didn’t progress to completion. Anyway, the block is over now and I think I am going to take it with the same love I had.

Meanwhile, I could finally bring up my website – – to extend my blogging experience to a formal and diversified content platform. Some of my content is already categorized there and as I am going to take it as extension of my notebooks, it will see constant experiments and updates.

Writing is relief and release and I explored the canvas for newer realms and blogging continued to have some of its share through my regular blogs - and - and my themed blogs - and - with 550 posts including – articles, poems, photographs, experimented images and quotes. For my first blog, ‘Beyond This Life’ or ‘Severally Alone’ (, it was also the third ‘no breaks’ calendar year in a row.

During the course of writing, I did something that I had not done in years. I don’t remember the last time when I had watched a full movie in theatre. I prefer the home video option, even if it means some wait. I am not a film buff but I admire and revisit the good cinema and home videos give me the liberty to do so at my own pace while at the same time help me in building my library. But 2014 had the final episode of JRR Tolkien’s Middle Earth story, as filmed by Peter Jackson, scheduled in December. It was capping the second Middle Earth trilogy of Jackson’s stint with Tolkien’s land of fantasy after 11 years when the best of the lot, ‘The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King’, a landmark in narrating a book on screen, was released in 2003 and there was an urge to see the trilogies side-by-side, in their totalities, on how the craft of filmmaking had performed comparatively.

Now the home video would not come before April 2015. So, for my urge for the comparative study, I decided to take the route long forgotten when I picked up the movie in a theatre on Saturday, December 13.

Now, in few hours, the 4 of 2014 would transition to 5 of 2015. So, while the three digits would remain the same, the fourth different one would cause the next cycle on the timescale to begin, like the eternal message of living that says - ‘tomorrow is built on today with learning from yesterday’ – remember, life is never a zero-sum game.

It would be another calendar year with 365 new days to explore, to write, to read, to travel, to create new ideas, new stories, rewriting the oldies, clicking and capturing the known and unknown while continuing on the inward journey.

With the freedom of ‘no resolutions’ - with the freedom of my commitment to my conscience to live every day meaningfully liberated – with the freedom to make every day an opportunity!  

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -

Tuesday 30 December 2014


Though it was a tough day, with important news developments like the court decision on discharge plea of Amit Shah, BJP's national president, Narendra Modi's Number 2, second most powerful figure of the political establishment running India now, from charges in Sohrabuddin and Tulsi Prajapati fake encounters; the ongoing India-Australia test match; and the ongoing developments in missing AirAsia flight incident, that was bound to take the airwaves time away, the team behind PK, the movie, expressed its gratitude to the round of much needed publicity that accrued to it in past few days.

Their spirit of recognizing self-motivated and selfless efforts remained undaunted, when, in the end, even the reduced coverage that was expected, didn't come after the shocking news of unexpected resignation' of Mahendra Singh Dhoni from test cricket swept the agenda of the day.

The Team PK sent praising notes of their heartfelt thanks to the top leadership and members of outfits like Hindu Yuva Vahini, Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Bajrang Dal, Hindu Mahasabha and many others who have been working relentlessly making outreach of PK even wider, when the movie was fading in appeal. Also, the team has sent specially packaged messages to express its feelings to Ramdev and Subramanian Swamy, the two stalwarts of the pack.

After all, because of their efforts, the movie is again in news, is registering more footfalls and is headed for more views.

Though PK, the movie, was an 'inspired' production with less of original elements, including the idea, the narrative was developed well around a subject of mass-importance and thus mass-appeal - religion and its quirky and ostentatious elements - and the Team PK hoped to cash on Aamir Khan's star-power, Rajkumar Hirani's track-record and a well-crafted marketing strategy to enter the big league, the super-blockbuster league of Indian Cinema, with earning ranging in hundreds of crores.

It worked well, initially, with the star-power, the narrative and the hype keeping the cash stacking up. But, being not the first time, with ample gyaan and slow pace in the 2nd half, it soon became clear that the narrative was not expected to get to the 'super-blockbuster' status - until the push to its 2nd life arrived.

As expected, after the days of hype and marketing influence were over, the cash inflow started flattening out and was well on the way to get into the stagnation zone.

And then, it happened. The 2nd life arrived, and in style, keeping the nation and the audiences hooked to the TV screens with intensely debated discourses on the movie.

The Good Samaritans, from the evergreen, overworking Hindu fundamentalist outfits, jumped in the fray, carefully picking elements from the movie to enlighten the nation, pushing more to watch the movie, to know about the elements they were highlighting. There are even the sort of viewers who had watched it earlier but are going to watch it again as they could not notice the element(s) in the context these 'Good Samaritan publicists' are presenting.

And there could not be a better timing. It is perfectly opportune, maximizing the resource utilization. 

After all, had it coincided with the release, it would have wasted the resources used in marketing and promotion of the movie. Coming after the days that could be attributed to the 'influence of marketers', the well crafted, coordinated and increasingly synchronized move is a brilliant exercise in exercising the Public Relations tools. 

After the first wave lost its appeal, fully exhausting its capacity levels, the second wave, that was voluntary in nature and had no official access and took time to research and study the finer elements of the PK content to be used as the central themes of their campaigns, had found the opportunity to chip in and they did it with full commitment, and too, without informing the production house and commercial stakeholders of the movie. Such exemplary selflessness is rare and is to be given due notice as has been happening. 

Now, it is certainly debatable that how much the movie has earned so far, with differing figures putting the movie in different leagues - from Rs. 200 crore to over Rs. 400 crore clubs (hyped up box-office collections, that is again an increasingly used brilliant film marketing tool) - but it is clearly visible that its cash-pile is adding more stacks now, and at a handsome pace.

And the team that has produced a sensible cinema in PK, the movie, cannot be expected to act insensibly, by not saying thanks to these altruistic well-wishers.

And it also came with perfect timing. The 'tomorrow' could not have been better than the 'today' to say thanks as it was a frustrating day for the volunteers with Dhoni's resignation stealing the show and the airwaves even if they worked harder and launched the campaign in many other cities. 

The words of recognition, appreciation and gratitude by the Team PK will certainly lift their mood and morale up from today's frustration and would recharge them for a more action-packed tomorrow. 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -  

Monday 29 December 2014


Bhartiya Janata Party's member of parliament from Bhopal Alok Sanjar is a lawyer by profession his profile on the Lok Sabha website says.

But on Sunday the world came to know about his another expertise, hidden so far, that told the world he had deep scientific understanding and knowledge and he was a scientific researcher par-excellence specializing in psychological aspects of human biology including sexology.

The 51-year old law graduate who is a first time MP revealed his finding (or the eureka moment for the humankind) after a painstaking work that is sure to echo around the world - among the members of the scientific community as well as among the societies of the world populations including governments, opinion leaders and social scientists.

Mr. Sanjar, while addressing an event in Bhopal on Sunday (December 28, 2014, the red-letter day), revealed to the world his 'epoch-defining' finding on human sexual behaviour and its effect on human lifespan.

So far, the Gyaanis (the subject matter experts) have maintained that sex is better than jogging or can efficiently replace your gym engagement and can help you keep fit with a brilliant mental health or is the best form of physical work that includes pleasure as well. Discussions on health benefits of sex include themes like 'if sex is the best form of exercise'.

But, then Gyaanis of stature like Mr. Sanjar are iconoclasts in their endeavours, giving the world something new that redefines the existing concepts.

And being true to his reputation, his finding indeed was groundbreaking, shattering the age-old notions on benefits of sex (mentioned above). Mr. Sanjar told the world on Sunday, in definitive terms, that sex affected human lifespan negatively and 'frequent' sex could 'drastically' reduce one's lifespan.

Now, coming from a personality like Mr. Sanjar, who is also one of the members of the committee of Indian parliamentarians on 'health and family welfare', the earth-shattering finding has created a huge buzz and is being discussed the world over, including one of the alter-ego aspects that Mr. Sanjar probably left knowingly for some other day as he was still working on it. It is foolhardy even to think that Mr. Sanjar would have left it out of the ambit of his work. 

The finding has grave consequences as it challenges one of the most taken for granted aspects of human relations and, as expected, has already become the talking point. 

While the societies are debating the finding with heated discussions, scientists are approaching Mr. Sanjar to get enlightened on his finding further, to learn about its scientific nuances and its psychological implications. Anthropologists and social scientists are also interacting with Mr. Sanjar to know more as the finding has the potential to change the human behaviour on one of the natural and basic requirements of human physiological and psychological make-up, of human existence. As per the latest reports, governments, including his own, are also reaching out. 

While the desire to further the understanding on Mr. Sanjar's finding is supreme, all of them also want to know the 'missing' aspect - that what should be the 'frequency' of sex - that could be in the safe range - or the 'safe frequency of sex'.

We wish Mr. Sanjar is already working on it because this 'missing' piece is the only hope after his authoritative finding that says human lives are under threat from an activity that has been internalized and is fundamental and universal to the human civilizations since the days of Adam and Eve (or when the first man and woman walked here) is expected to bring chaos in human relations and thus in societies. 

We hope we will soon have some synchronized scale of 'safe frequency' by Mr. Sanjar that would be applicable to societies and 'makes' of humans.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -  


The public anger against Congress, mixed with the cocktail of its governance related anti-incumbency and its pro-corruption image, pushed the majority of the youth votes to Narendra Modi.

But why Narendra Modi only? Why not other opposition politicians?

Because he was the only projected prime-ministerial figure of pan-India appeal. Because he was the most tech-savvy politician with huge following on social media platforms - Facebook and Twitter. Because he had delivered consistently on his promises of governance and development with a 'brand' of politics that appealed to the youth - smart cities, big-ticket infrastructure like Bullet trains, end to end connectivity, employment, checking internal migration for livelihoods. Remember his speeches in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar where he sold, day after day, rally after rally, the dreams of providing jobs to the youngsters in their own cities/regions.

No other political opposition figure had these many elements to appeal to the needs and aspirations of the youth, the largest demographic segment of the country.    

Half of over 81 Crore voters in the Lok Sabha polls were youngsters, below 35 year. Over 31% of the Indians were in the crucial 18-35 years age-group, the voters, including the first-time voters. 20-30 is the age-group that seeks entry to the job markets.

Their first and foremost priorities are job, employment and future security.

According to the Census figures, in 2011, the number of households having unemployed members rose to 28% from 23% in 2001, an all time high for the decadal exercise. Some 110 million or 15% of the working-age population of 15-60 years were jobseekers.   When seen from the perspective of youngsters, 18% of the youth in the age-group 25-29 were looking for jobs while unemployment rate in the age-group 30-34 years existed at 6%.

And most of them voted for Narendra Modi we find when we read into the analysis of the voting patterns of the Lok Sabha polls 2014.

And we don't we have convincing reasons to say that they were pulled to vote for Modi because of his polarizing appeal.

After all, a famous and often-used proverb says that one cannot (and cannot be expected to) worship God with an empty stomach.

This graphics from a Quartz India article on youth priorities trending during the Lok Sabha polls only corroborates it.

Image courtesy: Quartz India

They voted Narendra Modi in for his promise of development and for their future and not for elements of communal politics/politics of polarization. We should gauge this from the fact that, in spite of all the efforts, Ram Temple doesn't stir emotions anymore.

The priorities are clearly changing and are changing fast.

And dominance of issues like religious conversions or sanctifying the forgettable (yet not to be forgotten, for they remind us of the dark forces of democracy) ghosts like Godse would make them feel cheated. Their future is at stake and they need a politics of change to change their fortunes and cannot allow absurd issues to hijack it.

They won't allow the forces diluting the development agenda. And if Narendra Modi doesn't deliver on it, and allow the fringe, communal elements to go unbound, he is not going to make it home in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar assembly polls as that would be a logical window of time (around two years to around three years) to assess the performance on delivering the related poll promises. But we should not be surprised if we see its signs even in the upcoming Delhi assembly polls.

Narendra Modi needs to feel it, think on it, realize it, and needs to act on it. 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Sunday 28 December 2014


Bengal, Gujarat and others, should have some serious introspection for their proponents and supporters who had started making claims and counterclaims on waning BJP gains/Modi Factor/Modi Wave.

The results of the four assembly polls after the 2014 Lok Sabha election tell how unfounded those questions were.

If seen on the rational plank, not superimposing the performance of BJP in the assembly segments in the Lok Sabha polls, that was far better than what BJP came out with in Maharashtra, Haryana, Jharkhand and even in Jammu & Kashmir, the rationale of BJP getting stronger at the expense of Congress and its allies (of now).

After the Lok Sabha polls, a historic mandate defining the electoral and political landscape of India, when BJP emerged as the only party winning majority on its own after the 1984 polls when Congress had swept the country riding on the sympathy wave after Indira Gandhi's assassination, had telling signs.

1984 to 2014 - it is a full circle now for Congress and the wheel has turned having a new hand steering it. There was sympathy wave for Congress then. There was anti-incumbency surge for Congress this time.

But, more importantly, for BJP, there was no sympathy wave. What gave the party central poll-plank was this anti-Congress anti-incumbency surge coupled with anti-Congress anti-corruption wave. And the clear projection of Narendra Modi as the prime-ministerial candidate, with a track-record of over a decade of development oriented governance in Gujarat coupled with his Hindutva identity, when there was no other prime-ministerial candidate in the field (including Rahul Gandhi), filled whatever gaps were left in BJP's preparation/appeal/credentials.

BJP's win this time was earned, helped by several factors, including efficient management of elections, down to the booth level, sweeping grounds in the most important states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, and maintaining extensive outreach in states where it was nowhere in the scene, like West Bengal, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Northeast states.

They efficiently managed the anti-Congress wave, absence of a clear, official, Modi-adversary, the fractured opposition, the Hindutva politics elements and crushed the hopes of the opponents with extensive campaigning by Narendra Modi.

The opposition didn't question its loss on these pointers and went into a quickly adorned fallacy of a 'BJP/Modi on decline' based on the outcomes of the bypolls, while Modi and BJP kept on oiling and working the machinery that delivered it the Lok Sabha pollls.

And Congress (and Opposition) did its own peril the four assembly poll results show, with three having BJP governments while in J&K, BJP is the clear kingmaker with maximum vote share. 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 


My reflections on life – in quotes (XCIII)

“History becomes the most lethal weapon..
..of mass manipulation and mindset control..
..when history-makers come to dominate history-writers.”


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Saturday 27 December 2014


After watching ‘The Interview’, Kim Jong-un has decided to send ‘Guardians of Peace’ to his missile death squad for adding to the movie's publicity.

Los Angeles Times - 'The Interview': Farce doesn't live up to fuss, reviews say
Bloomberg Businessweek - The Interview Review: Much Less Compelling Than the Events It Inspired
The Independent - The Interview film review: Controversial gross-out satire is broad, bawdy and bad - but undeniably entertaining
The Sydney Morning Herald - The Interview review: Contentious topic bogged down in clumsy humour
The Washington Post - Review: ‘The Interview’ has some laughs and makes some points but isn’t as edgy as its reputation suggests
A. O. Scott, The New York Times - My colleague Mike Hale, who saw the movie at an advance screening and wrote about it after Sony’s initial decision to pull it from theaters, mused that “the only real mystery is how something this ordinary could have caused so much agitation.”

Enough is enough, shouted Kim Jong-un, while self-styling his hair in his cosy room of Ryongyong Residence and reading through the reviews of the Sony Pictures movie, ‘The Interview’, the movie allegedly made to caricaturize the personality and the assassination of the 3rd Kim of the ‘Kim’ nation, North Korea.

Was this the movie that forced the ‘1st Hermit’ to tell the world that his lot existed (and mightily existed) in the cyberworld as well – Kim Jong-un asked so in a fit of rage?

While ordering ‘Sony Hack’, a damaging cyberassault on ‘Sony Pictures’ by his ‘Guardians of Peace’ for coming with ‘The Interview, so as to force the company to take it off from different platforms and to teach America, Barack Obama, Sony and the world about ‘exclusivity’ of Kim Jong-un’s interview, the 3rd Kim had decided he would also not watch the movie.

But after such reviews, that apart from lambasting the clumsiness of the film, also lacerated it for not living up to the expectations in the light of the ‘Sony Hack’ episode, he could not resist the urge to watch it, in order to set the further course of action.

The central theme of reviews was – ‘The Interview’ didn’t deserve this much attention at all and the controversy in the aftermath of ‘Sony Hack’ would only help the movie commercially as the release could not be pushed further after Barack Obama, the US President, made it a ‘prestige issue’ and went public about its release putting pressure on ‘Sony Pictures’.

Also, the 2004 release, to be re-released in place of ‘The Interview’, ‘Team America: World Police’, that tried to do the same with 3rd Kim’s father, Kim Jong-il, was much better than ‘The Interview’ on ‘cohabiting parameters’, but the 2nd Kim didn’t react on it, or didn’t go hyper about it.

Kim Jong-un is feeling flummoxed by all this, feeling being letdown by his own lot, by his own ‘hermits’. What he thought would tell the world about his ‘cyber might’ has made him a laughing stock once again. And his money helped in it, in giving ‘The Interview’ free publicity worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

According to the reports from credible sources from inside the country, watching it only through halfway took his anger out of gear and he, then and there, on-the-spot, ordered the team of Unit 121 (the North Korean hackers, as the world knows them) behind ‘Sony Hack’ to be sent to his newly constituted ‘missile death squad’ that was successfully launched with the execution of Kim’s uncle Jang Song-thaek in December 2013.

But that is not it. Before that, every member of the team has to watch ‘The Interview’ 100 times unstopped.

Now, that can only be the style of someone like Kim Jong-un, the baby-face, tenderly chubby, Dennis Rodman loving ‘hermit’, who also orders entire families to be killed, entire communities to be starved to death.

Idiosyncrasies – after all, they are at their ‘raging’ best – they have their greatest manifestation in ‘greats’ like Kim Jong-un.

And a team of North Korean hackers is facing his wrath now – for something that was done in America. Their fault is that they could not hack the Sony systems to the extent to steal ‘The Interview’ and watch it before they reported it to their Supreme Leader/Dear Leader.

And now, it is going to cost them dear.

The ‘Guardians of Peace’ now need a guardian to save their lives but who can save them in North Korea, or even in the Chinese hotel, from where they operate, when the 1st Kim created the world and the 2nd Kim controlled weathers thr 3rd Kim has ‘elements’ of both. Such is the might of the ‘topmost hermits’ of the ‘hermit kingdom’.

 Image courtesy: Collage prepared from images sourced from Newsweek, NBC News, The Blaze, CTRIP

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -


My reflections on life – in quotes (XCII)

“A type of love,, selfless, committed,
..that happened to be ‘love’ once, lost.. its postmodernist and individualist..
..definitions and interpretations.”


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Friday 26 December 2014


During Narendra Modi’s one-day visit to his parliamentary constituency and my city, Varanasi, on December 25, on the day of Christmas, on Modi government’s ‘Good Governance Day’, the itinerary included events in Banaras Hindu University (BHU).

On December 24, Modi’s government had announced Bharat Ratna for Mahamana Pundit Madam Mohan Malaviya, the great freedom fighter and founder of BHU, and Atal Bihari Vajpayee, statesman, poet and former prime minister. December 25 is also the birth-anniversaries of Mahamana and Atalji.

During an event in BHU’s Swatantrata Bhawan, in presence of Modi and some other ministers of his government, Smriti Irani, the Minister of Human Resource Development of the Government of India, during her brief address, quoted these lines from Atalji’s poem ‘geet naya gata hun’ (गीत नया गाता हूँ - I sing a new song)..and if I am not wrong, someone should please tell Smriti Irani that Atalji's lines were,

'Haar nahi manunga, raar 'nayee' thanunga' - (हार नहीं मानूंगा, रार ‘नयी’ ठानूंगा) – ‘I will not give up/I will not concede defeat, rather, I will engage in new disagreements’..

And not,

'Haar nahi manunga, raar 'nahi' thanunga' - (हार नहीं मानूंगा, रार ‘नहीं’ ठानूंगा) – ‘I will not give up/I will not concede defeat, I will not engage in altercations’..

Though I believed it was so, Smriti Irani quoting these lines with ‘nahin’ (will not engage in/negative) during the event pushed me to do a quick research again. And there, I found it was not just with Smriti Irani.

In fact, most of the pages in Google search returned with ‘nahin’ though on listening to Atalji’s rendition of the poem, it becomes clear that it is ‘nayee’ (new/affirmative/assertive) and not ‘nahin’ (will not engage in/negative).

Here is the YouTube link to the poem with Atalji speaking on it: 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -


History is the most lethal weapon of mindset control when history-makers come to dominate history-writers; when research, that is always political in nature, is skewed to the designs of the times and the people and ideas controlling those times; when research becomes totally purposive to the outcome, by its presence or absence.

History can make North Koreans believe that the world was created by Kim Il-Sung, the 1st 'Kim' of the 'Kim Nation' who ruled it for 44 years, from 1948 to 1954. The ‘Eternal President of North Korea’ started using ‘Great Leader/Supreme Leader’ for himself right in 1949.

The North Korean history extracts tailored response from people controlled by the 'hermit' menagerie that the 2nd 'Kim', Kim Jong-il, who worked tirelessly to build personality cult of his father under his efficient tutelage, controlled weathers. Probably, this love for history-making pushed the 'dear leader' to bring the 'enduring' famine of 90s to the 'people' of country that made some 3-4 million of them 'history'.

Let's see what the North Korean history-makers cook about the 3rd 'Kim', Kim Jong-un!

History can make him the 'Kim' who defeated America and unified Korea, eliminating/mass assassinating the South Korean leadership, the extensions of the godly powers of 1st Kim's creation-of-the-world and 2nd Kim's control-and-manipulation-of-weathers, without venturing out of Ryongsong Residence, even once.

After all, it is entrenched in the North Korean psyche that South Korean President Park Chung-hee was assassinated by North Korea, when, in reality, he was killed by his own security chief who claimed ‘democracy in South Korea was his motive’, and that North Korean missiles reach and carry the job of destruction/Supreme Leader’s wrath on the American mainland where citizens live in poverty and face chronic unemployment.

See it to believe it -google for many of North Korea’s propaganda videos and images, though there are some ‘researchers’ who deny that the North Korean personality cult goes to this extent – to present the ‘supreme leaders’ as having godly powers – but the images out of North Korea – leaked or officially released – tell us otherwise.

The embalmed and preserved bodies of Kim Il-Sung and Kim Jong-il in Kumsusan, the palace of sun, the grand mausoleum, the most sacred santum, communicate directly to Ryongyang Residence, to show the light, to guide Kim-3, the 3rd Supreme Leader/Great Leader.

And such effects of history-making are universal in nature and can be applied to any country, any civilization, including the world's largest democracy. All it needs are the patrons to discover and promote the talent and purpose of master manipulators, the history-makers!!

Images courtesy: Time, BBC, Wikipedia, ITV 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Thursday 25 December 2014


December 25 is the Day of Christmas, a day of celebration with universal appeal, and it is so good to feel so about it.

In fact, it should be so with all major festivities of all religions across the faiths, across the adherences, across the societies, across the countries, across the religions – the way Christmas has become - a day to cherish humanity – to celebrate the season with the joy of coming-together – after all, festivities are as much there to give us the window to put our routine day-to-day life aside and come together to enjoy some quality, free time, to meet our other ‘self’, to recreate, to socialize – as much as they are for religious observances – the ‘recreational’ aspect of a festival and its religious facet.

The recreational aspect, the human psychology of celebrating festivals, is common to the civilizations, across the religions but the religious facets create forced and psychological walls to make festivals exclusive to their respective religions.

Religion is the tool relentlessly used by opinion leaders, leaders, monarchs, dictators and even elected leaders to divide humanity into endless chasms, closeting the mindsets to restrict them to see the logic, to question the doctrines, to feel free to choose the religion, to freely practice the religion including the right to reject it.

Religion and thus faith is supposed to be intimate to an individual – the way it is practised and the way one perceives others practising his and other religions.

Sadly it is not so.

The Crusades, the inter-religious wars, expansionism of empires in the name of religions, exploitation of humanity in the name of religion – the wars to establish the supremacy of this religion or that - the practices are as old as the human civilization – and are still deep rooted to inflict the maximum effect/damage.

And it makes universality of Christmas even more important.

It is not pushed. It is not forced. It is not about imposing Christianity. It is, rather, about celebrating the universality of the ‘recreational’ elements of festivals.

It is celebrated in my home. It is celebrated at my work place. It is celebrated in my neighbourhood. It is celebrated in cities across India. It is celebrated across countries. It is celebrated even in many Muslim countries.

And with a youthful spirit, bathed in the joy kids draw from it, irrespective of what religion says about it.

Christmas is now, more or less, a global festival, sans its religious elements. Yes, for the followers, the religion and its observances are very much there. But its joy, that is routine human and doesn't require one to know Christian ideals and Bible Psalms, has transcended spontaneously across societies, from Christians to non-Christians.

Kids love it. Youngsters love it. Adults love to live the joy of it. And they don’t do it because of any religious influence or religious pull. They don’t know about Christmas more than what their textbooks have told them, yet they live and share the joy of it.

They do it for the joy that its ‘recreational’ aspect brings – holidays, reunion of family and friends, Christmas carols and music of the season, the rhythm of multitudes with the fair and lights of midnight Mass and the legend of Santa Claus - and for the season that transitions us to the next year – the New Year.

Santa Clause has become of every religion. He is the symbolism of the good, the child, and the innocent in all of us. He, along with Christmas carols, makes for the spontaneous connect with the non-religious aspect of Christmas for non-Christians.

Singing, dancing, rhyming, celebrating, enjoying life, with all coming together – that is the universal appeal of Christmas - and it doesn't require any religious sanction – even if, ideally, religion has/should have nothing to do if I celebrate Christmas or Eid.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Wednesday 24 December 2014


December 24 came with a news that indeed mattered, for many of us, Bharat Ratna to Mahamana Pundit Madan Mohan Malaviya.

The government announced today Bharat Ratna to Malaviyaji along with former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

Vajpayee should have been awarded a long ago but it took a BJP government in the Centre to do so, a justified decision, that took so long to arrive at due to silly political considerations. Vajpayee is one of the best prime ministers India has had and Vajpayee, the Statesman, was acceptable across the political ideologies. And making Sachin Tendulkar a Bharat Ratna while ignoring Atal Bihari Vajpayee was never acceptable. Anyway, it is in now, thankfully.

The decision to award Bharat Ratna to Malaviyaji, though Narendra Modi had promised, as for Atalji, was bound to raise controversy, given the fact that it came 68 years after his death. Posthumous Bharat Ratna decisions have been controversial but, Mahamana decision, thankfully, is also in.

The great Mahamana  - yes, the argument does stand that giving Bharat Ratna to Mahamana Madan Mohan Malaviya posthumously would open a Pandora's Box with supporters popping up even for the likes of Akbar and Ashoka.

But, for us, from the Banaras Hindu University fraternity - it was long overdue.

And the nation has indeed honoured itself by honouring Mahamana.

So, let's put aside the arguments - even if valid they are - let them be for the gyaanis/experts/analysts populating the others spaces.

And let's feel good about arrival of this decisions.

And it should be Mahamana Madan Mohan Malaviya and Atal Behari Vajpayee - the respect that 'age and period' command, even if it is Vajpayeeji all around, with Mahamana in passing references only.

Anyone who is from Banaras Hindu University and has read to know Mahamana can feel his imprint on the University - on what he wanted to make it - on what it became - on what it is becoming - to think further.

The Greats who gave us our Independence, who shaped our social structures and thought processes through the tumultuous colonial years, are much above any recognition including Bharat Ratna.

And it's that way here - the Mahatma, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, the Father of the Nation, called himself a devotee of Malaviyaji and deciding on Mahamana's name is an honour for Bharat Ratna in fact.

(Images sources from the Internet) 

 ©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Tuesday 23 December 2014


It was a day of high decibel political events with poll results of Jammu & Kashmir and Jharkhand due. The developments only increased in intensity with rapidly changing numbers that initially gave BJP around 60 seats in 81-member Jharkhand assembly but soon came down to the 'politically speculative' zone and kept on hanging there, with no clear winners.

The hung scenario in both the states (with Jharkhand cleared later on giving BJP majority) kept hooked everyone to analyse the situation further on performances, on who will be chief minister, on what will be possible alliances and so on.

Meanwhile, in a remote corner of the country, somewhere near Bhutan border in Assam, armed militants stormed villages, recklessly firing and killing tribal people. We all failed to report it initially as it came, midst the stormy political developments of the day. But as the death toll started rising rapidly, from some 6-7 deaths to over 10, to over 20, to over 30, to over 40, and to over 50 now, from different sources and from social media activity, it was no longer possible to not to come to it, for everyone.

Around 5 PM this evening, militants of the Songbijit faction of the National Democratic Front of Boroland (NDFB) started attacking villages in Kokrajhar and Sonitpur districts of Assam. According to the reports, the firing continued till 7-7:30 PM. Latest reports say the death toll has risen to over 50 including many women and children and any final figure can be arrived at only tomorrow.

It happened even after there were warning signals of it. NDFB(S) had warned yesterday against the security forces killing two of its members on Sunday.  Also, it is not new to the region of Assam. Ethnic violence in Assam has killed and displaced thousands and is continuing unabated for decades.

It is horrible, shocking, sickening and humiliating on our collective existence. And in such crisis hotspots like these places of India, it keeps on happening, yet we fail to prevent it, yet India fails to keep an effective check, India, the rising major power of the world.

For how long, will we remain in the shackles of political compulsions to confront and eradicate insurgency threats in such places? The approach needs to go beyond political considerations like votebank politics and appeasements and needs merciless, iron-grip control and execution.

Before the parliamentary polls this year, a huge row had erupted after a BJP leader from Assam had claimed that 'the Songbijit and Ranjan Daimary factions of that NDFB had pledged support to BJP for the Lok Sabha polls'.  

The rising death toll and the destruction of human lives, livelihoods and families with every such attack, in Assam, and in every other part of India must cost us heavily and irreversibly as a civilized society.  

 ©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 



1. As projected, the hung assembly is here. The difference is, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) are close number 2 and number 1, respectively. And both parties are under 30 - BJP(25), PDP (28) - as per the trends and results as of now. Who is the real king here?

2. Though PDP is 3 seats more than BJP, the swing for BJP is of 14 seats from its 2008 tally of 11 that is just double of 7 seats that PDP scored more this time. But the overall vote share of BJP, 23%, is more than PDP's 22.5%. Also, when seen comparatively for the vote % in 2008 J&K assembly polls, the BJP gain is huge and unprecedented for party's electoral history in the state. BJP's vote % of 12.5% jumped to 23% (~11%) while the comparative increase in PDP's vote % has been moderate, 15.4% to 22.5% (~7%). Doesn't this make BJP the real winner of BJP's assembly polls, irrespective of whether they join with 'someone' to form the government or sit in the opposition?

3. National Conference (NC) is third with 15 seats but Omar Abdullah, the outgoing chief minister who lost one of the two seats contested and could win one with slim numbers, has come out and said he is satisfied with the outcome and his 'political obituary' is not here yet. He says, after zero in the Lok Sabha polls, his party won 15 seats with two party supported independents and the tally of 17 is a positive development for him. Is this a result of an honest introspection or an immediate reflection to confront the criticism as both Congress and NC combined have just 2 seats more than BJP and BJP, a 'not-so-relevant' force so far in the state politics, has taken the space so far occupied by Congress and NC?

4. In the four-cornered fight, Congress is the last, with 12 seats, when it was in alliance with National Conference. Is Congress new BJP of J&K politics - the national party with a 'fringe' presence in the state?


Government Formation possibilities in Jammu & Kashmir

80 of the 87 assembly seats have been won by four main parties of the quadrangular contest. The largest party PDP has won 28 seats. Second largest party BJP has 25 seats. Outgoing chief minister Omar Abdulla's National Conference has been able to win 15 seats while Congress, which split up with NC before the elections, could win only 12 seats.

This hung outcome makes the equations with these 7 seats highly interesting as they can make life easier for some possible equations in this scenario. 2 of these seats are with Sajjad Lone's People Conference (PC) that will go with BJP. 2 of these seats are NC supported independent candidates out of total 3 independent winners. The other two seats are shared by Communist Party of India (Marxist) (1) and People Democratic Front (Secular) (1).

Now, with these numbers, what can be the possibilities of government formation in Jammu & Kashmir (going with the dictum that there are no permanent friends or foes in politics):

PDP + BJP = 28 + 25 = 53 
Comfortably above majority requirement of 44 seats - with 2 members of Sajjad Lone's PC, the alliance will be 55-member strong - going by the reports, back-channel talks are on, as indicated by the hints dropped by BJP and PDP spokespersons and other leaders - PDP would like to give this possibility the maximum preference as a friendly government in Delhi would make life much easier for the incoming state government

PDP + NC + Congress + NC supported Independents = 28 + 15 + 12 + 2 = 57  
This one also makes for a stable equation in the number-game and going by the 'secular Vs communal' discourse, these three parties can come together to form the government

PDP + NC + NC supported Independents = 28 + 15 + 2 = 45 
A majority of just one seat - can scout for one more independent and CPI(M) and PDP(S) winners taking the tally to 48 but that will be a cumbersome task and the majority obtained thus would be wafer thin, prone to manipulations

BJP + NC + PC + NC supported Independents = 25 + 15 + 2 + 2 = 44 
Counting Omar's options to join BJP in, now, this is an unacceptable majority number - just on the mark - even with managing seats of CPI(M), PDP(S) and one independent, (3 in all), the 47-member strong coalition would be a tricky alternative

Are there other combinations possible folks? 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -