On Vanguard Business School

Most of you know that this is where I work, for the rest here is our  website:


Hope you find it interesting enough to support , visit, encourage and recommend.

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On certain things that are best written and not said

You’ve always been my most ardent fan – not the googly eyed variety, but the serious kind -the kind that can and most inevitably will give sharp feedback when warranted.

You’ve been there for me when the going was tough and you’ve kept me grounded when the going was brilliant.
You’ve led me by your example while you’ve pretended to the world that you follow me around.

You’ve been my sartorial editor, nay my sartorial Hitler (can’t recall the last time I was allowed to buy clothes of my choice), and while I’m not convinced this is a good thing, I do quite often get compliments for sharp dressing- so thanks for this as well!
I am afraid I love you a lot more than I think I do. And the real fear, is that I think even that might not be enough to compensate for who You are.
To know you, is to love you – and I do.
I do.
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On the lack of Suitability of Certain Unmarried Folk

I recently read ” The (In)eligible Bachelors” by Ruchita Misra. This book falls into several automatic categories – Indian English Literature, Popular Culture, MBA Authors, Chick Lit, etc. This is my review of the book…
Ever since Chetan Bhagat and his “Five Point Someone” there’s been an endless stream of MBA alumni from premier B-schools in this Country rushing to Publishing houses with their half thought through but fully completed manuscripts, and publishing like there is no tomorrow. Personally, I thought  “Five Point Someone” was a strictly okay sort of a book, gave an insight into the life of somewhat below average blokes at above average engineering colleges – I’ve done more risque, brilliant, story worthy and interesting things during my engineering college days than the protagonists in 5.someone did- not to mention my stint in B-school.
Therefore, when I hear of the latest IIM/IIT grad whose book is out I tend to skip it ( Except the Meluha trilogy which is on my read wish list, simply because the plot seems engaging to me). However, i simply could not do that with this book because (a) I know Ruchita personally , plus (b) she was one of the stars of my junior batch at IIFT and, as it mentions in the blurb a triple gold medalist (no mean feat that,trust me!) as also (c) with the exception of Vikram Chandra’s “Sacred Games” & the Meluha trilogy mentioned above, which are next on my reading list there really wasn’t much floating around in the market.

So, when flipkart delivered the book to me (at a hefty discount for pre-ordering the book prior to its release) I though I’d give it a try. It turned out to be a surprisingly good read. 

Surprising because at the end of the day it is, and will always remainChick Lit – A genre I abhor, and ( not that I am a chauvinist) as far as ChickLit goes only three books ever in this genre have ever made an impact on me, (“Daddy Long Legs” by Jean Webster ; “Little Women” byLouisa May Alcott and “The Touch-me-not Girl ” by Rajlukshme Debee)and let’s face it, as things stand (today at least), Ruchita is just not in thesame class as these three writers. But interestingly, this book has strangeparrallels to all three books I’ve mentiones not sure if she’s drawn someinspiration from any/all of these especially “Daddy Long Legs” whichof the three books I’ve mentioned is my clear favourite.

At the end of the day, here’s a book from a hated genre of literatureand a hated class of authors (for me) which at the end of the day I stillenjoyed. 

A lot.

So clearly, this is one of the best Chick Lits around and one ofthe best works I’ve read from IIT/IIM alum class of chump writers.
In fact, it’s the first book I’ve read in onestraight uninterrupted sitting in a long long time  ( the lasttime that happened was way back in IIFT before I got busy on thestudent council there, almost 4 odd years ago, but you know how you haveloads of free in College that work life never confers on you!)
This post is a work in progress will update a few thinking points that Ireally liked about the book and a few suggestions to Ruchita  to ensureher next few offerings are in the quality league that she clearly has thepotential to deliver ( on the rather presumptuous assumption that my blog rantsare read by a famous published author)

Keep watching this space !

Posted in Books, Chick Lit, IIFT, IIM, IIT, India, ineligible bachelors, Literature, Ruchita Misra | Leave a comment

On What India needs..

Somewhere close to our 64th Independence day, I’d floated a tweet with the message that what  India really needs going forward is good education and good healthcare and that with these two taken care of most everything else would naturally follow.

There were a few sharp reactions to this tweet-o-mine, as might be naturally expected when you solve a centuries old problem in the space of 140 characters. The one reaction that I remember came from a dear old friend of mine Prabhu Narasimhan.His take on this was that education & healthcare are fine but what India really needs is a mature and clean Polity first and foremost.Now this chap, has and remains, in my short life, the most difficult person to win an argument against , and therefore I was pretty happy at his reaction because  on this I feel I have a winnable argument.

To state my case:

Is an honest  and mature Polity likely to solve all of India’s problems ? That’s too loaded a statement to merit a serious answer, because while clearly  there can only be an affirmative answer to this question, it automatically begs the question -how do we put in place a mature and honest Polity?

My bet is that  an honest and mature polity can never really come about as a result of  a lone crusade led by a JP or an Anna Hazare. It comes about gradually :-

  • When Government after successive Government does serious work on cleaning up our rather corrupt system.
  • When Generation after succeeding Generation feels that corruption is less prevalent around them than it was in the past, and as an extended corollary feels it is less acceptable than  it was in the past.
  • When IAS official after succeeding IAS official realizes that lining his pockets doesn’t help him as much as getting caught would damage his career, reputation and standing in society.
  • When Minister after succeeding minister is forced to understand that corruption ,indolence and lack of initiative will result in two things , (a) him not getting elected ever again and (b) the wrath of the same constituency that had idolized him (or her, for that matter) and voted him into power.

All of this takes time, and more importantly, it takes an educated electorate to react consistently over a period of time to bunglers, cheats and lazy bureaucrats/politicians. It’s only after these bunglers/cheats/indolents realize that the electorate won’t reward them any further for shabby and slipshod work willl they be prodded to change themselves, And this is why I feel that without a redoubled effort to educate our masses on their civil responsibilities and duties; on the rights conferred  to them by our constitution; we can never (not in the distant future , not decades from now, not in a rosy scenario a few years down the line, but NEVER!) arrive at  a day when we have an honest and Mature Polity in place.

That’s my education angle.

The healthcare angle is something I feel even more strongly about. India can never catapult itself into its glory days without addressing its severe lack of effort in the healthcare space. Having  stayed for more than three years in Sub-Saharan Africa , I feel entitled to my opinion that Indians deserve better healthcare than they have access to today. I feel this way because we have access to better doctors than sub-Saharan Africans have access to, and yet, our average healthcare facilities are at best at par with facilities there and in most cases – shame on us – worse than theirs. Oh yes, the best healthcare facilities we Indians have access to is definitely slightly better than the best facilities sub-Saharan Africans have access to , but that isn’t much to be proud of !
Also, in a couple of years from now, given our tendency to gloat when we shouldn’t, I wouldn’t even bet on this last scenario being true anymore.

That’s my healhtcare angle.

Let’s just get these two things right, because frankly no one has even bothered to do anything on these issues till date.

Posted in Current Events, Economy, Education, Grouses, Healthcare, India, Musings, politics, scams, Wish Lists | 2 Comments

On possibly Google’s best Doodle ever …

OK, so Google is one of my starting tabs on chrome and occasionally I stop there to check stuff out, and, once in a while I’m rewarded by interesting doodles, those version fonts motifs, weird guitar simulations and other crazy ways to write Google that they do on certain occasions…

Today’s commemorating Freddie mercury is possibly one of their best ever…

check it out HERE now, before they archive it!

Posted in doodles, Freddie Mercury, Google, Music, Queen, Rock | Leave a comment

On Promises to Keep

Four days before we celebrate our 64th Independence Day, Times of India chose to go with an Editorial by Dr. Kiran Bedi titled “Promises to Keep”

[Aside] Time was when I used to recommend reading ToI Editorials as a good starting point to improve one’s English, those days are gone as there were no less than 15 uncapitalized “i”s in this particular editorial. IMHO this smacks of a casual attitude of the ToI editorial staff rather than on Dr. Bedi . I think Times of India needs to wake up, smell the coffee and hire at least one proof reader [/Aside]

Just a few months ago I think the silent Singh had transformed his public image from a toothless follower of Madam Sonia’s diktats and had slowly but surely clawed his way to being counted amongst India’s most successful PMs on most parameters. That today he is back to square one must rest largely on his disappointingly silent demeanour on the unfolding CWG and 2G scams.

I had crossed swords with Indian Mainstream Media (as had most of Indian twitterati worldwide) when the 2G spectrum story was almost with disdainful ease killed by the Indian Media. That the 2G case might well ring a death knell for UPA-2 is comforting if only from the perspective that  voices outside of Government and Mainstream Media still can and do make themselves heard in India. This was obvious a few months ago when Anna Hazare inspired thousands (if not millions) to question the current government’s record on anti-corruption.

However, I  think Dr. Bedi makes some strikingly telling points when she insists that Dr. Singh must not remain silent any longer. You, Dr. Manmohan Singh, must apologize to the nation , take stock of their displeasure, outline a time-bound game plan for the balance 600 days or so that remain of your tenure, AND for God’s sake be the face of your government for the rest of your term because, much as I admire Pranab Mukherjee, P.Chidamabaram , Kapil Sibal, Manish Tiwari and gang  for their erudition , they do not have your stature and therefore they cannot substitute the effectiveness of a message that comes directly from your mouth.

Also Dr. Singh, I think that you must do this quickly before your stature drops below their’s, and quite frankly, If you don’t have anything to say to us of note this 15th August , you would, as they say, have missed the bus.

Jai Hind!!

Posted in 2G, Current Events, CWG, India, Manmohan Singh, MSM, scams | Leave a comment

On the day I made it through to Olam

[Aside]Have been wearingly busy  these last few days trying to cap a crucial month close, and what with a planned fly-by-wire trip to India to perform my Mom’s (peace be upon her) Shraadh ceremony[/Aside]

Today,at lunchtime, I  got a call from a junior at IIFT, Archit Tiwari – absolutely ecstatic at having made it through to Olam in the lateral placements and , boy, did that take me right back to the same moment almost three years back !!

I remember that:

  • I’d joined IIFT with Olam as one of the companies in sight as far as placements were concerned
  • The idea was to focus on academics, rank among the toppers of the batch. Do a lot of club activities on the side( I enrolled for every club bar Koshish and that coz there was a cap on number of clubs we could join in our times), and spend two years gearing up for Olam !!
  • That idea went for a toss so early into my IIFT stint that it wasn’t even funny.I remember that in the run up for the IMF elections,when I finally decided to file my nomination for post of President, my wife (then Fiancee) specifically asking me why I wanted to stand for elections when that wasn’t what how I’d planned my two years [ though heart of hearts I could sense she wasn’t too upset with my change of plans  😀 ]. 
  • I ended trimester one  ranked 93 out 93  students on Delhi ( oh the reasons for that are hilarious, and embarassing!). NO topper by any stretch of imagination that!!
  • After I got elected President, a fantastic story in its own right – one that I can and have only shared in its entirety with my wife and of course my fellow IMFers, I’d most given up any hope of coralling any good placement, but then the philosopher in me took over and I warrior-ed on..
  • During finals, I made it through  Olam, and a weird feeling subsumed me. One that really wondered how two paths entire worlds apart culminated in the same thing (a path I imagined that lead me to Olam, and an entirely real life track that again ended up with me making it to Olam )
Three years post that day, I think , again that life hasn’t exactly panned out as I’d planned these three years but it’s been so much more learning, so much more fun , and so much more rewarding than I’d imagined.
To Peter Sayal, Gaurav Patil  & Archit Tiwari :
Welcome to Olam, guys.
You’ve just taken the red pill, now watch how deep the rabbit hole goes !!! 
Yennjoy !!
Posted in Hostel life, IIFT, IMF, MBA, OLAM, Placements | 7 Comments