Thursday, May 31, 2007

Call center for the blind

There is this interesting article on BBC news about a call center in Mumbai(Bombay) which is meant for visually challenged people only.

I find this as a good sign, because people are thinking out of the traditional app roach that blind/handicapped people are only limited to a set of jobs.( If you've seen Black , there's a very nice dialogue that Amitabh has to reflect the same). Also, I am sure that this will give them a sense of achievement, and also , an all important, making them financially self sufficient.

Most importantly though, I feel that the fact that the person at the other end does not know that they are blind, will instill a great feeling of confidence since it gets rid of the (sometimes undesired) sympathy. Kudos to the people who got this great idea to work.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Reflections of India - 2

So here's the big deal. India is rich. Teenagers have more money than ever before. If not , they have a credit card. Is it just because of the economy booming?

I don't agree. It's because of a new way of life, which is more influenced by the western philosophy. More and more credit cards, more and more malls, and more are the people influenced to shop. And oh, the big 'chain' restaurants. I don't think I can generalise, but when I was in college, I would not dare to ask my dad for 100 Rs . to spend on one coffee in a 'coffee' house . And again, not that we did not spend money. But, somewhere show business has come into picture quite a lot. It's just so 'cool' to sit in cafe coffee day, and it's so 'uncool' to go to a local restaurant and have coffee. Surprising.

The positive side is, though, that it is fun. There's a lot of life which somehow was non existent. I mean, now there are umpteen places to hang out, as opposed to a very few.

And of course, cultural values have changed. It's no longer a taboo to divorce someone and move on, and as pre martial relations and teenager independence are going over the roof, the new Indian generation is breaking the shackles of that 'Humaare yahaan aisa sab nahin hota' thing. While some of it is wrong, I do believe that it's good in a way, since I would rather follow something in which I believe in rationally, than just be forced into it since I was brought up here. Maybe it needs a little bit more care.

One interesting thing I observed, which follows from one of my earlier blog posts, is that somewhere we have developed the tendency of going the 'under the table ' way, instead of going straight. Somehow every employed person who tries to do his duty, is considered 'khadoos' and the corrupt guy is considered - 'flexible aadmi hai'. I found , particularly in this visit, that most working class people will do their duties properly, if you speak politely to them( One guy was just too shocked, when I said 'Aap please zaraa yeh kar denge' ) Something, which we might have never tried, might just work . It's about giving it a shot.

This post has been badly structured, sorry for that. I just had too many thoughts, and could not organize them properly. Your comments are welcome.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Statistics of the India trip so far

Days spent: 16
Places visited: 3
Shopping done: Rs.25,000
Number of people who have told me that I have grown Fat : 31 ( and increasing)

Monday, May 07, 2007

Reflections of India

I have come to India a good 2 years since I last came here. Also, having learnt the experiences of life in Uncle Sam's land, I have been kind of away from the way of living in India and Bombay in particular. This time, as I come back, I feel there are so many things I wanna tell everyone

Firstly, India has grown rich....For some reason, I still think of India as the one I left in 2003, which is a far cry from anything you see right now. Somehow people have all the money to spend on expensive restuarants, funky mobile phones (I want to write more about this in a separate blog), and in general, India has changed

Let me start with some things that I did not like though. The first habit being branding us guys as 'US returned' and worse terms. A simple example

We went to a resort, and food wasn't allowed inside. For some reason 3 people close to me tried to smuggle food inside the resort. On top of that, they gave the same reason(in the same words).The reason was 'Yeh ladka America se aaya hai, aur bahut Bimaar hai'. aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! I did not like this on several counts. First, I believe my approach has generally changes towards breaking rules. Especially if it serves little or no purpose to do so. If they don't allow food inside, it's prob to keep the park clean, and I feel that is 100% justified. And please, just because I am US returned, does not mean tht I am the most sick person and hence should get all the favours. I don't like because people do this, and then people will say, yeah America se aaya hai, khaane peene ke bahut naatak honge. All this when you really don't want it.Disheartening :).

I always stick to the philosophy that a person who goes to America is no where different from a person who does not go. It's just a matter of making a career choice, that drives a person there.

Have I changed? Maybe not. I am just 4 years behind all these people. It's they who have changed.