Jan 15

2014. In 10 tweets.

1. The year began with some good, wholesome, fun-filled family entertainment – The General Election. It was an intense 3-cornered fight between Modi, Anyone-other than Modi and None-of-the-above.  The Congress however, sportingly added to the fun…

2. Attempts like the above resulted in the Congress getting wiped out. Mahatma Gandhi once said, “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” From 2009, Congress did this in the reverse order.

3. Modi became PM amidst much celebration by the people who voted for him, SAARC leaders and Tamil fishermen. While Congress sharpened its claws and prepared to play its role as a responsible, destructive opposition. But the BJP completely stymied Congress’ aspirations by presenting their own budget back to them with some cosmetic changes.

4. This was followed by the traditional honeymoon period for the new PM. And like most honeymooners these days, Modi spent most of his time abroad.

5. While, at home, religion trumped development, conversions trumped the economy, scriptures trumped science, and Smriti Irani trumped herself.

6. But while politics provided unprecedented entertainment, entertainment became caught up in politics. The IPL provided solid employment for cricketers, cheerleaders, actors, police, lawyers & judges.

7. India went to outer-space and caused much joy…

8. … while outer space came to India and caused much anger.

9. The year ended finally, and so did Dhoni’s test career.

10. And throughout, we ignored the grim reality around us with an outpouring of happiness, empathy, care, trust, sympathy, advice and goodness, all in the virtual world.

Here’s to an equally fun-filled 2015. Happy New Year.

Jan 14

A Tweet & Sour Look at 2013

I think as one grows older and older, the year gets shorter and shorter. Perhaps, the effective duration of a year is the percentage of your life you spent in it. So, a 1-year old experienced a full-fledged 2013, whereas at 45, the year just represented 1/45 of my life. So it sort of whizzed past in 8 days or so. Yeah, life sucks. But I do feel somewhat superior to Advani and Karunanidhi for whom 2013 must have felt like a day.

In any case, even this short year was packed with entertainment, mostly provided by our esteemed leaders. So, here is the way I saw 2013. Tweet by tweet…



Narendra Modi to lead the BJP campaign for 2014. Meh! The Congress decided their leader 42 years back.

18 months of Mulayam Singh & Akhilesh Yadav, and slowly Mayawati is appearing like a nice cuddly CM who encouraged stone-based fine arts.

Rahul Gandhi is right. Of course India is a beehive. Hajaar worker bees. Many drones hanging around in parliament. And er… one queen bee.

I think we can make a reality show out of these Rahul vs Modi debates. We could call it The Rodis.

Of course, DMK will separate from Congress. They have big idealogical differences. Congress: Divide and rule. DMK: Multiply and rule.

2014 Election Playoff Fixtures: 1) Congress vs People. 2) BJP vs BJP. 3) Winner of 1 vs Winner of 2. 4) Subramanian Swamy declares victory.

Well done AAP. Even Sachin Tendulkar only scored 15 on debut.

Modi wave started from Gujarat, the Western end of India. So, Rahul wave has been planned to start from the Eastern end, Mizoram. Clever.

So, Congress and BJP distributed free booze before the election. AAP is giving free water after the election. WHERE IS THE PEANUT MASALA?


Dec 13

Great Expectations

My poor blog. Have been ignoring it for years now. Basically because these days even my thoughts never exceed 140 characters. But once in a while, I am forced to write these incredibly long pieces of er… 800 words. Like this article I wrote for Business World on “Digital in 2014″. They did publish it, and actually, instead of reading my blog, you can read it here. But, I thought, I might as well post it here also, and again start referring to myself as a ‘Blogger’. Why? Because it still does sound cooler than ‘Tweeter’ or ‘Facebookie’ or ‘Linkedinian’. No? Anyway, here it is… 

Hey, I got an easy topic to write on – Digital in 2014. Easy, because anyone can predict anything on digital, and everything will be wrong anyway. (The only man who usually got it right is sitting in heaven boring the hell out of God by telling him why the iPad Mini should not have been launched). And if by some chance, a prediction does turn out to be right, then I can immediately add “Technology Futurist” to my LinkedIn profile. So, what’s there to lose. Here goes…

In 2014, an incredible amount of useless data will be collected. Internet data, mobile usage, location fixes, wearable technology… where you are, what you’re doing, how you’re feeling… your heart-rate, blood pressure, bowel movements… everything will be captured, digitized and stored.

This ‘information’ will then be crunched by buzzword-based crowdfunded companies that offer real-time marketing using big data on the cloud on a freemium basis. These companies will help brands target you better with their free online services that are supported by ads from other free ad-supported online services. (Exception: Onions, however, will continue to be expensive because their easily detachable peels make them unsuitable for an ad-supported monetization model.)


Jan 12

2011 : A Twitrospective

Yes, yes. As we all know, that’s how we do it on Twitter. People become tweeple, meet-ups become tweet-ups, and twins become er… you get what I mean. So as we twug along in 2012, twondering tworriedly if the twayans were twight, maybe it’s twime to do a twitrospective of 2011. Through my tweets, as you no doubt twigured out. So here goes. Twenjoy…


John Lennon once told us to imagine a world without boundaries. Dravid & Gambhir just gave us a brief glimpse of it.

Any chance of Rahul Gandhi entering the cabinet? Isn’t it time Sonia did some beta testing?

Maybe Yeddy could be sent to Kashmir. In a few years, all the land will belong to his family, and all problems will be solved.

The Republic Day parade should have a CBI tableau. Perhaps, a truck filled with clean chits.

Government of Egypt blocks all internet access. The country can now be renamed gypt.


Jan 12

Sir Cawry Academy of Management

Oops. I just realized that my last post here was made even earlier than Sachin Tendulkar’s last test century. The whole of 2011 has been dry as a Gujarat. But wait. I did write something. An article that Outlook published as “The ‘Er…’ In Leader“. So what better way to pretend that this blog is alive, than a slimy repeat of the same. Here it is…

Dare to think beyond the IIMs. Now dare to think beyond institutes that you think of, when you dare to think beyond the IIMs. And you have…
SIR CAWRY ACADEMY OF MANAGEMENT – A B-school of notional importance.

Sir Cawry Academy of Management has been set up in order to create a pool of well-trained young people who will be placed in political parties.

Every aspect of the academy, from the campus to the curriculum, has been designed to equip our students with hard-core management principles, so that they can become the dealers of tomorrow.


The academy boasts of a sprawling campus near Delhi within easy access of the airport, parliament & Tihar. The entire area is a hi-security zone with numerous metal detectors, but students are trained to bypass them. Each student is assigned a personal car with a red light on top, and provided with an escort detail that clears the road for them. This of course, leads to minor problems, when more than one student is on the move at the same time. Wherever one sees, there’s a mess. But that’s only because we want to make sure that our students’ every desire is catered to; at all times.


Dec 10

2010 : Tweet by Tweet – Part 2

Hello again. And here’s Part 2 of MMXredux, which incidentally, has a high probability of being the Latin term for “2010 Revisited”. Which goes to show that there is, in turn, a high probability that I am a classical scholar, who’d be at home in Rome. A persona grata indeed.

Part 1 was a selection of tweets that pertained to actual events that happened in 2010. While this post is a selection (with no real standards) of my general views on things, neatly segregated into topics. So you could say that Part 1 comprised my topical tweets organized by time. While Part 2 has my er… timely tweets organized by topic.

Here they are. And as we say in Rome – Caveat Lector.

On media : Who are supposed to be the watchdogs of democracy, but have unfortunately misplaced the watch.

Now that they’ve launched the Crest Edition, the rest of TOI can focus on the trough.

Newspapers have columns, while TV channels have rows.

Every issue has a poll from Barkha, a debate from Arnab, a theory from Rajdeep and of course, a solution from C-Bag.

TV news is weighed down by its anchors.

When entertainment channels start showing reality shows, news channels have to move to fiction, no?

Barkha Dutt came out so strongly against raw news that I’ve started wondering if all NDTV news is cooked-up.


Dec 10

2010 : Tweet by Tweet – Part 1

What a nice time we’ve had in 2010 (Or MMX according to Romans). It’s been a great year with much to jeer. 12 months of strikes & bandhs. 52 weeks of scams and leaks.

This was the year in which Kalmadi made a killing, Assange did some spilling, CBI kept grilling, while Manmohan was just chilling.

The year in which Sachin kept scoring, and er.., so did Nityananda.

Many things happened. Lalit Modi was deposed, Yana Gupta was exposed, Rahman composed, while as usual, Deve Gowda reposed.

So here’s the year the way I saw it. On Twitter.


Jyoti basu dies at 11.47 a.m., yet again almost making it to P.M.

UPSC increases civil services intake from 580 to 965. Ouch. 385 more bureaucrats each year. A real Babulation Explosion.

Kerala gets 3G services. Now they can call themselves “GGGods own country”.


Jun 10

India’s got Talent

If you follow me on Twitter or are connected with me on Facebook, you have no doubt been subjected to repeated plugs for this article of mine that appeared as “Mum, I Shrunk The Workplace” on Outlook. For the others, I’m sorry, there’s no escape. Here it is…

The nice folks at Outlook wanted me to write an article on how the landscape of “professions” has been changing in India. And they said they would pay me per word. You might notice that I’ve already ripped them off with this 48-word introduction. So let’s quickly start.

I passed my tenth standard in 1984. So my impressions about the career options that people had earlier is derived mostly from movies.

From what I can gather, the 60s and 70s were simple times.

Professions were broadly divided into two categories. Industrialists, businessmen, smugglers & black-marketers formed one group. Honest, upright, poor, virtuous, government employees formed the other. Members of the first group acquired buildings, property, bank-balances, bungalows and cars. Members of the second group had mother.


Jun 10

Interview with Blog Adda

The title says it all. Here’s the link.

May 10

The Alternate Press Conference of Dr. Manmohan Singh

Yawn. What a boring press conference our PM had earlier this week. Read the transcript if you want. Note : It’s partly in Hindi.

Everybody knew what the questions would be. The usual stuff – Pakistan, terrorism, inflation, Naxals, corruption, Rahul, Sonia, and so on.

And everybody knew that there would be no real answers. If it’s a problem, we will look into it. If it’s corruption, the law will take its course. If it’s violence, we are open to talks. And if it’s the Family, we will wax eloquent about them. I wish the man at least tried it to make it a bit interesting. We know he is just a puppet, but even puppets are supposed to entertain, aren’t they?

Anyway, like we do in the case of so many other things, let us try self-help. If the government staunchly refuses to answer our questions, we shall have to do it ourselves. So here are the real answers that Manmohan never gave…

On inflation & economy : Please remember that this is a UPA govt. Which is why the economy has gone UPA, not neechey. And unfortunately prices went UPA-2. However we are working very hard to bring prices down. This is a government you can count on. As well as discount on.


Nov 09

PUB – The Progressive Union of Bloggers

Voting for the Indibloggies has started and exit polls indicate that the voters are hopelessly in splits. So some of us candidates have decided to form a united front with a common, extremely minimum programme. Presenting – The Progressive Union of Bloggers.


While the PUB has many happy hours, we understand that you, dear reader, have only a few minutes to spare. So here are short, snappy, 100-word speeches from the members of this alliance…


Nov 09


vote-mePut what, you ask? Put vote, I say.

Indibloggies, as you all know, is a highly prestigious award, which, after recent developments, has overtaken even the Nobel Peace Prize, in terms of credibility & importance.

Like its cheap imitations (Grammys, Oscars, etc.), Indibloggies too has various categories in which awards are given out. There are some technical awards like Best Blog & Most Humorous Blog which one needs to sit through. But by far, the most important categories are of course – “Best New Indiblog” and “Best IndiMicroblog”.

This blog has been shortlisted for “Best New Indiblog”. New??? Well it was quite new when nominations were called for. Since then, we have aged gracefully, but I would like to believe that Let’s Put Da still retains a lot of its childish immaturity.

Now all you need to do is write a program that keeps hitting the site and voting for ‘Let’s Put Da” – a cyber version of booth capturing. If your ethical code prevents you from doing this, you can do it the hard way – by visiting the site and voting. I’m not sure if a person can vote multiple times, but if not, you can always log in with various aliases (a list of names you could use is provided here).

So please go forth & vote and help Let’s Put Da join the ranks of Shiney Ahuja, Tushar Kapoor & Bobby Deol.

Incidentally, my twitter updates which be found here, or here, have been shortlisted for “Best IndiMicroblog”. So while you are at it, you might as well vote for me there too.

For the record, the person I admire most is Mother Teresa, and if I win I will work for world peace.

Here is the link to the polls – Indibloggies.

PS : Here are a few slogans that you can use to spread the word…

I’ll kick you with my foot da,
If you don’t vote for Let’s Put Da.

What is idli without vada,
What is bloggies without Let’s Put Da

Other blogs ko quote karo
Par Let’s Put Da ko vote karo.

Oct 09

The Nobel Peace Prize – Behind the Scenes

The announcement of Obama as the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize has raised a few eyebrows, shaken a few heads, and drawn a lot of ridicule. After all the committee had 205 nominations to choose from. So why pick a man whose formula for success is supposed to be 99% aspiration & 1% inspiration?

The internet is filled with imaginative theories on why he won. Some people feel it’s because his name is easier to pronounce than that of Ahmadinejad. Others postulate that he won it in a contest by virtue of being the tenth caller to the committee. All these theories may have merit, but one can never know for sure until 2059, which is when the deliberations of the Norwegian Nobel Committee will be released to the public.

However, painful persistence, dogged determination and a dose of hallucinogenic substances have allowed Let’s Put Da to lay its hands on the minutes of the committee meeting. So, dear reader, here they are…

(Note : In order to provide insight into the proceedings, the editor has randomly retained a few caricatured European accents derived by watching Peter Sellers movies and other such credible sources)



Venue : Oslo
Date : October 2009
Chaired by : Thorbjorn Jagland
Also present : Kaci Kullman Five, Sissel Marie Ronbeck, Inger-Marie Ytterhorn, Agot Vlle
Agenda : To decide the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize 2009

TJ : I call zis meeting to order.

KK5 : Ja, Ja. It ees time we start.

TJ : Ladees & me, we are gathered here to choose ze Nobel Peez Prize. As you all know it ees very prestigious and carries a heck-of-a-lot-of money. So let us choose carefully and wisely.

IMY : Yess. Yess. I agree. Peace is precious. War is bad. I have been reading a book by Tolstoy on thees subject for the last 4 years. It really helps me sleep peacefully.

TJ : Ok, Ingel. Let us get ze started. Sissel, could you read out the first finalist plees…

SMR : Thees is a man from India. Called Morarji Desai. It seems he was so fond of pees that he used to drink it everyday.


Sep 09

A Sarkari Formula 1

Dear Dr. Mallya,

I hope this missive finds you in the pink of health and the black of wealth.

I notice that you have been making attempts to help JPSK Sports get government funding for F1. But you must be aware that the sports ministry has firmly declared that anything expensive & entertaining cannot be called a sport. They prefer investing our tax money into activities that are cheap & boring (Kho Kho & Malkhamb to name a couple). In any case, hasn’t the Olympic telecast on DD conclusively proved to you, that in India, sport & entertainment do not mix.

I saw that you tried to take on the minister, MS Gill, on this issue, but you seem to have been sternly rebuffed. In other words you got a danda from gilli.*

But seriously, why on earth do the organisers want money from our government? I know that petrol prices have gone up, but still, isn’t F1 a rather prosperous pursuit? They say it has a global TV audience of 600 million. Surely such a venture would attract some capital. It’s like “Who wants to be a millionaire?” asking the government for a small subsidy.

And think of the perils you invite if you allow our government to get into the event. I can imagine a cabinet meeting where every ministry imposes its agenda on the race. Here is a partial list of possible policy decisions…


Aug 09

New Indian Nursery Rhymes – 2

Arun Shourie’s “Humpty Dumpty” outburst reminded me of some stuff I had written many months back and had completely forgotten to post – The second installment of new Indian nursery rhymes. You can check out the first part here.

So I dug them out and here they are. I know they are a bit dated (they pertain to stuff that happened 6-8 months back), but what the heck, it’s still better to have nursery rhymes that are drawn from India circa 2008 than Europe circa 16th century. Sing along for best results :-)…

Based on “Little Miss Muffet”.

Little Miss Jaya,
Eats some papaya,
Along with some curd and rice.
If you want a favour,
Some money you gave her,
For Miss Jaya comes at a price.

Based on “Pussy Cat Pussy Cat”.

Prakash Karat, Prakash Karat, where have you been?
I’ve been to Beijing to visit the Cheen.
Prakash Karat, Prakash Karat, what did you there?
I promised my bosses, that I’d do my share.