Tuesday, October 30, 2007


I have plans to revive my malayalam blog.

Lets see how it goes!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Reality (or Unreality?) Shows…..

The television channels of India are busy hunting for new topics which they can transform into reality shows. Many print-online forums are busy discussing the rights and wrongs of this form of entertainment, where the performers present themselves, rather than a character. The term ‘reality show’ holds a significance only for shows like the Big Brother or MTV Roadies where the contestants are supposed to live a life together as themselves and the audience enjoy seeing that. And by the same standard, it is not fair to brand shows like Voice of India, Indian Idol and Idea Star Singer as reality shows. In fact, these kinds of music contests are not something new to the Indian television. It’s just that they didn’t have the SMS funda involved in them.

The SMS voting involved in the contests has increased the business aspect to many many folds. For the programs of yesterdays, the one and only source of income was the advertisement slots in between various segments. The concept of SMS voting was introduced to this, not to ensure that the contest will have a democratic feature in it, it is because the voters are charged at premium rates by the service providers and a lion’s share of this extra profit reaches the kitty of the producer. For a small state like Kerala, prices of the range 40 lakhs-50lakhs-Limousine car are much much beyond the expectation of any contests, but when we analyze the money involved in a full series of a contest, this amount appears just nominal.

Here are my thoughts on the most prominent show of this genre in Malayalam at this point of time, Idea Star Singer, hereupon addressed as ISS ,broadcasted in Asianet.

ISS, as per the various statistics, enjoys the biggest audience reach , in all Malayalam programs aired daily. After a real pathetic show in 2006, ISS crew had a really skillful strategy for 2007. More emphasis was given for the settings, style and quality where as in 2006 it was almost a one man show by MJ[ Read it Michael Jackson!]. Even when facing the accusations of the manipulations and business minded partiality, Asianet could bring out a good quality program which does not tire the regular TV audience. Apart from the ardent fans who vote for their choices regularly, the program really don’t affect us, infact it entertain us to a great extent.

The contests are really giving us an honest performance each day. I think the greatest gift that each of them already won is that, all those faces have become very common and familiar to wide masses all over the state. Names like Sannidanandan have become very popular in the online discussion forums for malayalis.

The judges..hmmm… I really don’t want to comment much on them. When the whole elimination is through the SMS voting method, I really don’t know the necessity of three high profile judges [ No, I am not leaving ‘Sharath sir’ behind ‘Sreeyettan’ and ‘Dheedhi’] for the event. And why should they come out each time with very minute comments, many of them sounding partial, if that does not have much effect on the result? I don’t know.

The anchor, Ms. Ranjini H , has triggered criticisms from the audience for her appearance, mannerisms and above all , her accent. Personally , me too hate Malayalam being talked the way she talks, but I don’t think it is fair to point the finger at her, she is doing what she knows. The producers of the show should think seriously about changing the anchor if they feel that she don’t match to the whole concept. Ms. Ranjini has a pretty good grasp in English, and I think she is bettering her Malayalam day by day. And the dress code she follows might not please the typical keralites like me, but I should confess that they suits her well enough. And about her mannerisms, too artificial!

Now a word for the contestants, if at all atleast one comes through this page before the Kingdom come: Music is not a visual art. The eardrums of your audience appreciate you, not their Retinas. The contest producer might be more concerned about the entertainment value of the whole program rather than the pure music in you. But since this provides a wide platform to project yourself, utilize it to maximum benefit with all possibilities. But by the end of the day, plz keep it in mind that Yesudas and SPB won many million hearts with their voice and voice only.

Wishing you all the very bezt!

PS: Najim, you don't rock! You just seduce with your voice!!!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Being a Catholic Communist..

Recent word exchanges between Pinarayi Vijayan and Mar Chittilapalli and the subsequent debates going on in the media poses a very serious question to many minds, who believe that Communism and Catholicism as two versions of the same ideology which stands for equality and welfare-for-all, former in a worldly point of view and the latter linked with the eternal life. The life and death of late Comarade Mathayi Chacko is pulled out to the streets just for silly gains and this has resulted the initiation of yet another ‘Vivaadham’ in Kerala. I’m sure Oxford will be enlisting this word in the 2008 or 2009 edition of their dictionary, for its wide frequent usage.

How does Communism and Catholicism contradict to each other? Elements of anti- religious, or to be specific, anti- Christian were evolved along with Communism because at the time when this ideology spread it roots, Church was one of the prominent feudal exploiting powers of the society. The unholy alliance between ‘Crown and Cross’ was considered as the biggest enemy by the upcoming radical thought streams. And prominent leaders of those days gave many messages against the church.

As far as the Kerala social scenario is concerned, Communists were branded as atheists from the day the ideology started spreading in this country. The right fraction political parties succeeded to convince the religious leadership of the society that the ‘Comrades’ were against religion and against Bible, quoting many examples from Russia and Eastern Europe. And majority of the priests and priest heads didn’t care to enquire more on this. But things have changed much, in the last two decades. Bishops like late Mar Paulose Mar Paulose identified Communism as a crude worldly form of Christianity and initiated friendly dialogues between leaders of both streams. Developments like this were accepted wholeheartedly by the socially vibrant Christians of Kerala.

Coming back to the current: It is very difficult to scan the whole issue with a neutral, impartial stand. But unfortunately both sides have their own valid points and neglecting any one of them will be an injustice, not to the fighting tycoons, but to that noble soul who gave his whole life to the ideology he believed.

Mar Chitiilapalli : Was trying to share his agony about a devotee been denied the right to be cremated in the church cemetery. But he used the issue, more to highlight the CPM party infrastructure and its rigid cadre system ,and hence sounded more political than religious. Even if the Bishop denies it upon God, UDF literally quoted him on many forums to encash it as votes .Also, he had to correct many of his comments after the family members of Mr. Chacko came out with explanations

Pinarayi Vijayan: Was trying to save Mr. Chacko’s stature in the society, and indirectly, CPM’s too. But the response was a bit out of the limits. Also, gave an impression that all party workers are atheists. But it should be mentioned that he never asked his party cadres to denounce their faith. But the church did it the other way.

Malayala Manorama: Well done!

This is my share of Oil to the Fire: Communism and Catholicism are complementary to each other. Jesus Christ is the biggest communist world has ever seen. Lal /Cross Salam!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Parents in Town!!

Dr. K J Joseph and Dr. Magi Joseph is in Town!!!

So that's a very special weekend!!!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007


40 years ago, Ernesto Guevara de la Serna aka Che was assassinated in Bolivia.

Now, how is that going to be a matter of concern , if he was just a foolish person?

Plz don’t misinterpret, a close friend of mine asked me why did I put Che’s pic as my display picture in Orkut. But he asked it like this “..Why you kept the photo of such a foolish person as your profile photo ?..”. Now comes the question, Why do I adore Che when many intellectuals around me see him as a foolish person? [ I have heard people describing Che as a cruel cold blooded murderer, dictator, lunatic etc but this is the first time I am coming across this definition!]

I know that Che was a leader in South America in the 1950s and 60s, who , along with Fidel Castro, toppled the Baptista regime in Cuba through a revolution and establishes their government. Several people were assassinated during the days of the revolution, and as a prominent leader, Che was accused guilty for many of them. After a few years of service as a minister in the newly formed government, he said goodbye to the ministerial life and roamed around for new battlegrounds for action. He served in the military of Cuba, and later joined the liberation warriors of Bolivia and finally was assassinated during the struggle in Bolivia.

But I adore him not for just being a guerilla warrior, or a politician.

I adore him because
- He had the backbone to stand against anything he felt wrong
- He had the courage and will to work/struggle/fight for what he believed in.
- He had the vision to see a world without being influenced by the big bros
- His speech[http://www.rcgfrfi.easynet.co.uk/ww/guevara/1964-cid.htm] in UN still remains one of the most ferocious speeches in UN against the US policies. [.. How I wish to hear my PM saying something similar to that…]
- After all the struggle in Cuba, he never settled with the comfortable life as a Minister. Instead, he moved back his playground.

And above all….
→ He influenced/ is still influencing generations after him, to stand against injustice, against neo-imperialistic reforms and against colonial politics, all around the globe.

Call me an adolescent revolutionary romantic..... I can bear that!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Perfect Monday...

It was almost 11.45 and I was waiting for the shuttle to Electronics City, near MG Road, Bangalore. Since the bus was scheduled for 12.00 noon, I was going through the pages of the Malayala Manorama newspaper, I had with me. I had noticed a very old, fair lady walking towards my side but didn’t care to give a second look. She looked somewhere around 75 and had wrinkles all over her face. Must be a foreigner who finally settled in Bangalore, I thought. Now, that does not mean that I would have looked if it was someone in the 20s. I am not that kind, you know!

I raised my head from the newspaper when I felt her asking something. And the qn was “Which language is this?” . I told her that this is Malayalam, and was about to tell her that this is the language of the southernmost state of India, named Kerala, when she asked me “ Ohh .. so you are from Kerala? Very pleased to meet you.” I was kind of confused. She didn’t stop there.” …Kerala is a wonderful place. I have lived in Cochin for 7 years, my husband was in the Navy. One thing I have really noticed about Kerala is that everyone go to school. I was surprised to see little little children walking through the road with bag and water bottles, to school. Also, Keralites read well, they read newspaper daily. And I think these are the reasons, you people get jobs where ever you go. I have observed that employers in Gulf, UK, USA etc prefer your people than anyone else..”…… And then she repeated these sentences a few more times….

And also, she added that she was on her way to post a letter for her elder sister settled in Denmark, and one for her younger sis in England. Now you must be wondering why this lady settled in Bangalore, and not in Europe? This is the reason. Her destiny had a day in it, to make a typical mallu guy she meets on the road, happy and proud about his roots.

Wishing you good health and looong life Ma’m, YOU MADE MY DAY!!!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Crossing the Lines…..

It is often difficult to define and honor one’s limits and limitations. We often overstep the permitted lines either deliberately or unintentionally. And, many a time, we will have to give an explanation, irrespective of the reason why we did it.

Two diverse incidents that happened last week, made me write such a boring opening sentence. Anyway, I am too lazy to reframe that.

1.Kick out Kalainjar.. says SC

The recent verbal observations from a Supreme Court bench, about the DMK government of Tamil Nadu, have initiated very serious debates in the legal circles, and the media, especially the news channels are making some money from that.

In a formal analysis, those comments can be neglected even without a thought as the verbal observations that judges make during the hearing of a case don’t have any legal value to it. What matters is what they write in the verdict. But these particular comments need real introspection, because they highlight a changing trend in the constitutional machinery of the country.

As per the constitution, the President can exert Article 356 to expel l a state government if he/she is convinced that the government machinery of the is not working, or is following an unconstitutional way of working. A report from the Governor is required to prove this. But the commonly followed practice or tradition is that the Central Government, after reports from the Governor as well as the Media, recommends the President to impose Article 356 in s state. We also have precedents of the President rejecting this recommendation, if he feels it is not fair or constitutional. Also, use of article 356 should be discussed by either the LokSabha or the RajyaSabha. So, it can be concluded that the legislature is the one single body that is responsible for the use of Article 356. So the comments from the Supreme Court that it will initiate the procedure does not sound logical. But the point of concern is the tone that the court used in the whole discussion. It also asked the AIADMK advocate to file a C-O-C against the Govt. Now that sounds a bit proactive isn’t it, especially when the Govt hadn’t delivered any explanation for the accusations that the other side had made?

After Independence, the governance of India was highly centralized and it was the Bureaucracy or the Executive that decided the overall development plans for the masses. Improper planning and favoring , derailed the overall development of the country and even after years of governance, we stood where we were at Independence. Then came the days of the politicians. The party/leaders in power called the shots and they started controlling the ‘Sarkaari- Babus’ to their limits, and may be even more than that. But once they too started misbehaving, the Judiciary was the last hope of the common man. People started coming to the courts with their grievances and many of them got their solutions. Public Interest Litigations often echoed the public needs and got them done. But I think that we are at a point where we are forced to find a control mechanism for the judiciary too. A few of the recent judgments, that it made in favor of itself has raised many questions in the political and social circles. Constitution wants the Executive, Legislature and the Judiciary to work in harmony for common good.

NB: Please don’t charge me with Contempt-Of-Court, I am just trying to impress others! And have a note of apology ready with me!

2.Sreesanth…. The excellent eccentric..

I don’t think we need a very vast explanation on what I mean by this. Sreesanth has groomed himself to be a good bowler for the Indian cricket team, hmm.. yet to say a very good bowler. And the intensity and ferocity he has shown on field have often inspired him team mates for better performances. But then, the line between motivation and misbehaving is very thin at times. And may be it is high time he thinks about being more mature on field , than childish.

Sreesanth , even though was very successful on occasions, was never a crowd’s favourite. I honestly think that they enjoy the fire that Yuvraj spits all around just with his looks and stares, than the weird antics that Sreekuttan performs on field.. Anyway, let give him more time. I m sure more days on the field, and may be a strict disciplinary action from ICC will make him cooler. He He.. All the bezt Sreekuttaaa………


Prof M N Vijayan crosses his final life of his life, and departs today . Just like he enlightened many stages all through his life with his words, he chose a public stage for his final farewell too. A warm good bye to the pious soul who could make a mark in Art, Literature, Philosophy, Psychology and above all Politics...