The Pandavas

The Pandavas
The Pandavas are the five sons of Pandu, by his two wives Kunti and Madri. The story of their battle against their cousins the Kauravas is told in the great Indian epic of Mahabharata. The five sons are named Yudhishtira, Bhima, Arjuna, Nakula and Sahadeva. Each of them is blessed with special powers due to their respective origins. For more on the Pandavas go [here]( “Wikipedia”).

The Hotel

“I’m telling you it was her man!”

“Boy, you must have been dreaming. How can it be her? She is thousands of miles away.”

“No, dude, I’m pretty sure it was her. I even followed her a little just to make sure. She is here. I’m willing to bet on that.”

We were on our way to a party neither of us wanted to go to when he dropped this bombshell. The thought that she was right here, in this city, made my heart race without my realizing it. It had been what, five years I think. We had said our goodbyes under difficult circumstances. I had never expected to hear from or about her again. But the world is small and in this era of connectedness any person from the past can pop up anywhere.

“So are you going to meet her?”

That question had been hanging in the air between us ever since he had said that she was here.

“I don’t know. Too much baggage still to be cleared on that front. So where did you see her?”

“At that hotel you guys used to frequent, you know.”

Yes, I knew the place. It was our adda so to speak. We were there practically everyday, so much so that the people working there knew us by our first names. In fact, we could get a room at a moments notice, a convenience which we often availed of frequently.

The street lights flashed by outside. The traffic lights blinked like owls. Traffic was sparse in this part of the town. It was a beautiful night. The wind flowing in through the window was cool on the skin. It was like drinking a glass of fresh water from a matka on a hot summer day.

The silence between us had stretched into a comfortable vacuum. Any thought was possible.

“Do you think she will look you up, you know, for old times sake?”

When lines converge life looks different. Ideas of fate take on an entirely different meaning. Yeah, that was indeed a million dollar question.

“I doubt it. If I know her she won’t. She is much stronger than me in that way.”

“What will you do if she called?”

“I’ll say hello.”

“Very funny. Seriously man, what will you do if she called up and said she wanted to meet you?”

Impact of Globalization on Indian Agriculture

(Note: Reproduced below with kind permission, in its entirety, is an essay written by my friend Dipanjali Rao as a research project for her Master’s course. It is long but it makes a very interesting as well as a sad read.)


The liberalisation of India’s economy was adopted by India in 1991. Facing a severe economic crisis, India approached the IMF for a loan, and the IMF granted what is called a ‘structural adjustment’ loan, which is a loan with certain conditions attached which relate to a structural change in the economy. The government ushered in a new era of economic reforms based on these conditions. These reforms (broadly called Liberalisation by the Indian media) can be broadly classified into three areas: Liberalisation, privatization and globalization. Essentially, the reforms sought to gradually phase out government control of the market (liberalisation), privatize public sector organizations (privatization), and reduce export subsidies and import barriers to enable free trade (globalization). There was a considerable amount of debate in India at the time of the introduction of the reforms, it being a dramatic departure from the protectionist, socialist nature of the Indian economy up until then. However, reforms in the agricultural sector in particular came under severe criticism in the late 1990s, when 221 farmers in the south Indian state of Andhra Pradesh committed suicide. (The damage done, 2005) The trend was noticed in several other states, and the figure today, according to a leading journalist and activist, P. Sainath1, stands at 100,000 across the country. (Sainath, 2006) Coupled with this was a sharp drop in agricultural growth from 4.69% in 1991 to 2.06% in 1997. (Agriculture Statistics at a Glance, 2006) This paper seeks to look into these and other similar negative trends in Indian agriculture today, and in analyzing the causes, will look at the extent to which liberalisation reforms have contributed to its current condition. It will look at supporting data from three Indian states which have been badly affected by the crisis: Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Kerala. Andhra Pradesh’s (AP’s) experience is particularly critical in this debate because it was headed by Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu, who pursued liberalization with enthusiasm. Hence liberalization in AP has been faster than other states, and the extent of its impact has been wider and deeper. (Sainath, 2005)

Royal Crescent

Royal Crescent
The Royal Crescent is an exclusive residential road of 30 houses, laid out in a crescent, in the city of Bath, England. It was designed by the architect John Wood the Younger and built between 1767 and 1774. It is amongst the greatest examples of Georgian architecture to be found in the United Kingdom.

Together with his father John Wood the Elder, John Wood the Younger was interested in occult and masonic symbolism; perhaps their creation on the largest scale was their joint work of the Royal Crescent and the nearby Circus (originally called “the King’s Circus”), which from the air can be observed to be a giant circle and crescent, symbolising the soleil-lune, the sun and moon. (Source: Wikipedia)