Sunday, December 12, 2010


Silence is so beautiful
I hear the sound of life
In this life these moments of lull
I so thrive

As the fog covers the hills
Becomes visible the beauty of white
No matter how you capture these stills
Nothing matches living this sight

Travelling in a train u look out
That tiny cottage brings a smile
With memories you surround
You want to go home after a while

Surrounded by strangers you feel alone
You wish there was someone to talk to
But reality hits like a stone
For the meanwhile, talking to yourself will have to do

You get rid of the sad thoughts
Pick up your bags and step out
Smiling thinking of haves and have nots
To survive here you know you will have to stout

Thursday, December 9, 2010

England-Bad losers or FIFA-corrupt rulers

FIFA Executive Committee handed over the hosting rights of Football World Cup 2018 & 2022 to Russia and Qatar. This much is fact and rest we have heard and read are opinions and claims.

You must already have read and heard a lot about these claims being made by various parties concerned from the British, American and Australian bid teams. I chose not to write about it as almost everything was already sadi but when I read a press statement by Sepp Blatter about England being Bad losers, I couldn't help but read between the lines.

I would like to bring up to date those who have not been following this controversy closely. England were being considered the favourites to win the 2018 World Cup hosting rights and they turned no stone unturned with David Beckham, Prince William and Prime Minister David Cameron as the face of the bid. But Russia was being seen as a close competition because of FIFA's vision to take the game to far fetched corners of the World. England were supposedly promised votes by as many as 7 members but in the end they got 2 votes. This after England were rated as the best techical bid by all assessments and the promises ofcourse. Similarly, Australia and USA had bid for the 2022 World Cup and they were also rated as the best bids. In the final votes, England got 2 out of 22 out of which 1 was there own representative. Australia and USA got 4 votes together. So this accounts to 6/44 votes for the BEST bids.

BBC carried a story against corruption in FIFA few days prior to the vote and this seems to have played its role. There have a lot of voices since, many accusing FIFA of having sold the rights to the "Highest Bidders." Well, Russia and Qatar-makes sense. Sepp Blatter reportedly reminded ExCom members about the BBC story before the vote and the same man comes in front of press and says that England are bad losers. I am not trying to portray the English as Gods, they have done there share of blunders in the world but in this case, they seem to be right. 

Now reading between the lines. Sepp Blatter's exact words were, "What can be wrong if we start football in regions where this sport demonstrates a potential which goes far beyond sport?" What I understand from this statement is, :-

1. I gave them the World Cup
2. I gave them the World Cup because I want the game to spread
3. There is nothing wrong in doing this

Well, this statement is in noway an acceptance of corruption, We Wish! But it certainly seems to be an acceptance of the fact that the vote is a joke and the World Cup Hosting Rights are given by the whims and fancies of FIFA ExCom Members or rather Sepp Blatter himself.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Yar mere Dildar

A punjabi poem, written in english to reach a wider audience

Yar mere Dildar
Meri Zindagi di bahar
Tuhade Dil cich hai bas pyar
Yar mere Dildar

Tuhadi Yari mera sansar
Tusi milo har janam har bar
Yar mere dildar
Mere dil da karaar
Mere haq ch khadi talwar
Yar mere Dildar
Kende honge menu chad sentiyan na mar
Sare ekko ek star
Yar mere Dildar

Friday, December 3, 2010

The Mystery

This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 17; the seventeenth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.

ACP Brijender Singh was lying in his bed with one hand constantly flickering the night lamp. Shalini, his wife, noticed this for some time and chose to ignore it. She knew he had a lot on his mind currently. They had made it a rule in their marriage not to interfere in each other’s work. But after watching this go on for 15 minutes, she said, “ Whats the matter Brij? Still thinking about the case? Let it rest for some time and go to sleep. You have not slept properly for 5 days now.”

Brijender was lost in his own thoughts and did not respond. Shalini touched his face and said, “ Are you Ok?” Brijender was startled but said,” Ya ya I am fine.” 

But Shalini knew that he wasn’t. Brijender had not slept properly for the last 5 days. She knew the reason, the entire world knew by now.

It all started on the 1st of May when Atul Malhotra, a well known journalist was found dead in his office late in the night. Later it was found out that he was strangled to death at 8 PM. The media had soon got hold of the story and it was immediately flashing as the headline on most of the top news channels. All the national and regional newspapers had the story running on the front page next day. 

Rajat & Amita Aggarwal had come in late on the previous night from a foreign trip and had had no time to catch on with the news. When Amita read the news of Atul’s death, who was a close friend of Rajat, she was shocked and went running towards Rajat to inform him of this incident but she couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw her husband lying on the ground,dead. Amita let out a huge cry and all the servants came running. Amita had got up 8:55 AM and had been out of the room for only 10 minutes. Rajat was the head of a Delhi based publishing house.

The primary evidence showed the murders to have taken place in an identical way. There was no straightforward logic that related the two murders and that is when the case was handed over to Brijender who had developed an image of seeing what was hidden in the one year he had been an IPS officer. The murders seemed to have been done in a perfect manner. No one had seen anyone enter or leave the victims’ house near the time of the murders. Brijender spend the whole day trying to figure out a connection between the two murders but no matter how deeply he dug into both victim’s work or life he couldn’t find something that would tell him who did this or why?  

It had been more than 60 hours since the first murder had taken place but still Brijender was no close to finding who did it. Brijender was about to leave for home when his phone rang at 6:45 PM on the 4th of May. His heart sank when he heard the news that another murder had taken place in exactly the same manner. The victim in this case was Meera Gulabchand, another giant from the publishing world . He rushed to the spot and to his horror, the press was there before him. He was bombarded with questions about who this serial killer was, Why were all the targets publishers or media persons and what he was doing to stop him? This was when Brijender finally realised that his major worry is not to find the killer but to save people who might be his next targets. 
It was 6th May now and this news was all over the news and Brijender was in the line of fire but it was not the press that bothered him. He was worried if there could be someone else as well and if yes, Who? And When?

Brijender tried to divert the topic and asked Shalini, “what are you reading?” Shalini was herself in the publishing industry but she was very new into the world so Brij was more or less certain that she could not be a target all the targets till now were bigwigs. Shalini replied, “ Just a manuscript I picked up today in the office. I read a couple of pages and found them interesting. Some guy wrote it a few years back but it was rejected. Don’t know why?”

Brij- What is the title?
Shalini-THE MYSTERY, written by some Akash Mehra

Brijender had come across this name somewhere in his investigation. He thought for a couple of minutes and suddenly a spark appeared in his eyes. He asked Shalini for a pen and paper.

Brij didn’t answer
Shalini was confused.

After scribbling for sometime, Brijender asked Shalini to call her boss.
The call went through.

Shalini: Hi Sir. Sorry for calling so late. My husband wants to talk to you.
After about 15 minutes, and a lot of Questions, Brijender cut the line.
Brij-I think you just solved the case for me.
As Akash Mehra entered the house of Ajay Pratap Singh at 1:58 PM on 7th May, he thought his revenge is soon going to be complete and completely according to the script. First Atul Malhotra, who called himself a friend, but still hadn't helped him one bit in getting his book published. Then it was Rajat Aggarwal and Meera Gulabchand’s turn who had told him that he should stop writing as his writing “simply not upto the mark” & “Just not good enough.” Their words still echoed in his ears. He had saved Ajay for the last as Ajay, CEO of Penguin India, had humiliated him the most. He still couldn’t forget the day when Ajay, in front of his entire top management team, had told him to try writing for a children's magazine or rather teach maths in a school like his protagonist in the so called novel. He couldn’t ever forget the torture he had gone through. 

Suddenly a person in a white shirt and brown trousers came running towards Akash and pinned him to the ground. As Akash frantically tried to release himself, Brijender took a sigh of relief.
Brijender jotted down the words THE MYSTERY on a piece of paper. And started writing numbers underneath.
THE MYS=90,24+24+24+18
THE MYSTERY=158,24+24+24+24+24+14
1/5/8  - 8 PM
2/5/8 – 9 AM
4/5/8 – 6 PM
7/5/8 – 2 PM

Luckily for Ajay Pratap Singh, ACP Brijender Singh’s wife worked under him.

Brijender and Shalini decided they should infact discuss work at home.

Akash Mehra has been in prison for the last two years. He was been given Death Sentence for multiple murders.

P.S.-I have used the concept of EJOTY. For details visit 
       24+9 means one full day plus 9 hours & so on for others

The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Greek Tragedy

K had said it a hundred times by now but decided to repeat it once again,” I am going to settle down here. The girls are so damn beautiful.” The second part of the statement was hard to argue and the first, well K is known for exaggerating. 

Greece was turning out to be as beautiful as or rather more beautiful than we had imagined it to be. Ofcourse Greece had its own set of problems-Illegal immigrants being one of them. A Pakistani shopkeeper warned us right on our arrival that we should keep our passports safe as they are the most stolen thing in Greece. But it was not a problem to our travelling as long as we paid heed to his advice, which we did. We had planned to visit Athens, San Torini and Olympia (if time permitted). Our first stop was Athens which was living lesson in history-the Acropolis, Temple of Zeus, Ancient Olympics stadium and so much more. The two days we spent in Athens were a treat if we ignore the incidence when M & A were stopped on the street by SWAT type police officials and asked to lean against the wall with hands up. They were left alone after passport verification etc. Though A remained in shock for some time but he got relief from the fact that they were policemen and not muggers.

As we took a ferry to San Torini we were all super excited to have a look at the trademark white houses of the island(Remember Tauba Tumhare Ye Ishare) and the beaches of Black and Red beaches of the island. For anyone who has been to San Torini would know that it is impossible to explore the island unless you rent a car or a bike. We chose All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs). That is when things started to go a bit wrong. ATVs are not the easiest thing to drive and M soon realised that as he banged into a car whose driver started shouting stuff in Greek which made no sense to M but he did catch the word “Police” to which M’s only response was “No Police!” The driver agreed to that bit but only after M paid him 300 Euros.
Things became smooth after that as M,G,H & K got comfortable with the rides. After having seen arguably the most beautiful sunset in the world, all of them headed back and returned the ATVs. Next day started off with a visit to the Nea Kameni Volcano but we were free by around 3 PM and our return ferry was to leave at 10 PM so we still had a lot of time so we decided to head off to the Red Beach on the island. Hence we again rented the ATVs which was not an altogether unanimous decision. As we reached the destination, we parked our ATVs and were about to walk towards the beach when A, who had been riding pillion to M all this while asked H if he could drive his ATV. So A took a very small round at incredibly low speed with H following him throughout to make sure nothing unwanted happens. Watching this, B, who had been pillion to K throughout asked H if we could also ride the ATV? So this was B’s turn. B also took a small round and he decided to test the ATV a bit more and took it straight which was slightly uphill but it was fine. The problem was the journey downhill. As B brought the ATV downhill, He didn’t realise the road had a slight curve towards the cliff and the ATV slowly kept moving in that direction. H shouted frantically and asked B to press the brakes but B had lost control by then and he went off the cliff along with the ATV. Meanwhile, G & M were being photographed by J on the other end of the cliff and hence they saw B and the ATV flying. After the initial shock of a couple of seconds, everyone ran towards the cliff. Underneath there was a sea of sharp edged rocks and water was constantly gushing against them (SEE: Bandra Bandstand). A fear gripped everyone and we shouted B’s name and were relieved to see him not his head. K & M headed down to bring him back. M made a brave attempt to bring the ATV back as well but it was not the easiest task in the world. M immediately headed for a doctor alongwith B. J & G left to look for a pick up van whereas K, A & H waited.

A lot happened in the following 3 hours but it was nothing compared to what had happened just now. Otherwise, a dog getting on top a scooter and being up against G’s chest and G&J escaping after letting the dog get on top of the person who tried to help them would have been a story in itself. 

As the night set in, we were feeling better as the doctor assured that B was fine but having paid 1800 Euros for the ATV, who could have been fine. To top it all, one of us lost his phone.

As hours went past, we started to get a bit relaxed again. Everyone was trying to cheer up everyone else. It felt great to be with a bunch of people all of whom were standing up for each other in the times of trouble. We headed for our ferry with a hope that the bad luck may get over with San Torini but the sadly, it was the Greek Tragedy not the Tragedy of San Torini.

As we got off the ferry at Phireaus, we decided to get our tickets for Italy booked and that is when it dawned upon H that he does not have the Eurail Passes of himself and two others he was carrying. As everyone searched their bags, calls were made to the hotel guy in San Torini if something was found in our rooms. We made efforts of getting a replacement but the stupid Eurail rules don’t allow that.

Tired and gloomy, we headed for Patras to head back to Italy. After having reached Patras, we relaxed for sometime at the port. Just when we thought that the worst is over, H realised he had lost his sunglasses in the bus. But ironically even H himself didn’t feel very bad about it. After all that had happened it just seemed like a drop in the ocean.

As we were heading into the ferry, we were asked by the port authorities to wait as we were required to be checked by the port police. We waited for some time patiently but soon anger and anguish started to grip us as all the fair looking people were being let into the ferry without any checking whatsoever and we saw this as a racial discrimination without a shadow of doubt. We tried to argue with the port authorities, asked them check our passports but to no avail. M & A went and talked to some official inside the port who finally checked our papers and let us go. But this was after we had been standing there for a good 2 hours. By the way, another fellow who was not even European and was let inside by the captain of the ship despite a couple o people asking him not to. A few Euros must have been exchanged there. Alongwith us another person was let in who later told us that he had a fake passport. If this is how they check, Why Check at all!!

And hence ended THE GREEK TRAGEDY!

And who am I you must be thinking. I could be anyone of A,B,G,H,J, K or M. We all suffered the same, just the money that got burnt differed.

Monday, November 15, 2010

With love & Peace

“Kal tak tan ji khatte hi si, o tan ena ne aiven hi vand te”
“We were One till yesterday, they divided us for no reason”

These were the words used by a Pakistani national when I met him in Greece and I couldn’t have agreed more. 

After having spent around 3 months in these foreign lands, I have experienced the love Indians and Pakistanis share for each other.  Sitting at home, in India or Pakistan, there can be anger and disgust towards each other for various reasons but in the end, we are the same. It has been just 60 odd years till nothing of this stupid rivalry existed.  The love and affection of thousands of years can’t just evaporate in such a short period and the fact is, it should never evaporate.

Being a punjabi, I feel elated when I meet someone speaking punjabi in Europe. In a lot of cases, that person is not an Indian but why should that matter when he speaks the same language, wears the same clothes, has the same culture. If you come to think of it, India's history is incomplete without Lahore and Pakistan's history is incomplete without Delhi. 

The funniest part to all this the fact that those who are responsible for separating us and those who have tried to make sure that we don’t see eye to eye are often offering to act as arbitrators in Indo-Pak talks.  I think we can manage without them, rather we can progress without them. 

Diwali of 2010 would always be etched in mind for what happened that day. We were in Athens and we wanted to have some Indian food and hence we headed to a Pakistani restaurant we had been to the previous day as well. As soon as we entered the restaurant, we saw a jam packed hall with Pakistanis watching Pak play SA in an ODI match. We were about to turn back when the owner saw us and recognised us from yesterday. He came running towards us, got some tables and chairs vacated for us and served us in the best possible manner. He indulged in a small chat with us when he discussed the bad economic condition of Greece which was forcing loads of Indians and Pakistanis to go back home. When he was talking to us, it never felt that he belongs to a different nation because deep within, there are 2 countries divided out of the same nation. I don’t think there could have a better diwali celebration than watching cricket sitting amidst separated brothers and having your own food.


This is just one of many examples that I have of how I have enjoyed and relished the company of people from our neighbouring nation. In my college in France, we have loads of Pakistanis who are studying as full time students. They have been more than willing to lend a helping hand if it came to searching for accommodation, advising where to buy groceries from and even invitations to play cricket.

The person whose quote I used right at the start of the article met me in San Torini, Greece asked me after observing me and my friends for some time , “ Punjab to?” I had made out from his accent that he is from the Pakistani side of Punjab so I replied, “ Hanji India wale Punjab to han.(Yes, From the Indian Punjab)” And he was quick to add,” tan ki ho gaya ji. Punjab tan Punjab hi hai.(So What, Punjab Is Punjab)”
I quoted this instance to my dad and he said,” waise dona punjaban nu chahida aape khade ho k koi reunification movement chala den.” Or “Both Punjabs should themselves start a reunification movement.” Though he said it in a light mood, this may be the only hope we have. Some fanatics, who don’t belong to any religion or any nation have created all these unnecessary problems and some politicians are not letting this die. Reunification is a far fetched dream but the least we can do is-Live like two brothers should, with love & peace.  

Naraz to tum bhi ho
Naraz to hum bhi hain
Galtiyan kuch hamari bhi hain
Galtiyan kuch tumhari bhi hain
Par kum tak yun roothe baithe rahenge
kab tak ik dusre se kuch na kahenge
kab tak yun dono taraf aansu bahenge
bhula do gile shikwe
do kadam tum chalo, do kadam hum chalenge

Saturday, November 6, 2010


This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 16; the sixteenth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.

 Sunil Dev had now been a professional tennis player for 13 years. After struggling to set his foot for the first 2-3 years, Sunil had been a huge success. He was currently the 3rd best ranked player in the World and had been in the top 3 ranked players in the world now for more than 10 years.Being the only player ever from India to be ranked No. 1 in the world was won of the biggest achievements for Sunil. He had tasted success of on surfaces, winning 28 titles in total including 7 grand slams. But he had always been eluded of that one Wimbledon crown he egarded the most. He had always been good on grass but fate had just not been in his favour. 3 finals, but always on the loosing side. He was now 30 and was beginning to lose his pace. New players like Peter Rogers and Gordon Jacobs  had emerged onto the scene in a bg way and were now regular features in grad slam showdowns.He knew if was to come, it will have to come soon.

The Championships in the year 2020 began on the 22nd of June. Sunil had a decent draw and the experts were expecting him to make it to the Quarters with ease and that happened as expected. Sunil came up against his old time rival Craig Withers in the Quarters and won the match in 4 sets. It was looking as if things might finally turn his way. He came up against Gordon Jacobs, the current World No. 2 in the semis and Sunil was not the favourite.  The match went down right to the rubber. The score after the first four sets was 6-3, 4-6, 7-6. 2-6. Gordon had won the 4th set with ease and it seemed as if Sunil's old legs had worn off. But the Old Warrior still had a trick or two up his sleave and he won the 5th set 6-1 in just 25 minutes. The Closing remarks of Roger Federer during commentary being, "Not even God knows where that came from."

Sunil had now reached the stage where he had been 3 times(2013,2016,2017) in the past but had always had to be content with the plate instead of the trophy. His opponent in the final was the 21 year old sensation Peter Rogers. Peter had risen to No.1 position on the rankings in merely 2 years. But it was his 1st Wimbledon final. Peter and Sunil had faced off only twice in the past. Peter had won on both occasions, that too in straight sets. No one was putting his or her money on Sunil. But, there were a few who knew the Indian could come up with one last surprise in his career. The sun was shining brightly in the village of Wimbledon. BBC had roped in legendary Indian doubles specialist Leander Paes for commentary on this special occasion. Leander started off, "This could be a historic day for Sunil and for India."

The match started off with Peter Rogers serving. Peter won the game at love with two aces and not having had to face a return. But, Sunil soon found his groove and both the players were matching each other shot for shot. Peter won the frst set 7-5, Sunil took the next one 7-6, Peter was back in the next one-winning 6-3. Peter was looking set for a maiden Wimbledon title when he was leading 3-0 in the 4th set. But while serving the ace that made it 3-0, Peter twisted his ankle. The doctor was out attending to Peter as Sunil was desperately loooking on. He wanted the Wimbledon crown, but he wasnted to win it. As Peter got up and started to jog a little & the crowd started to roar, Sunil had a sigh of relief.  As the half fit Peter came back, Sunil made the most of the opportunity and dominated the set from there on, winning it 6-4. The 5th set brought out the best in both players, with each matching each other point for point, game for game! Peter was fighting the pain in his ankle the best he could. As Sunil finally got a break point and a  match point, leading 9-8, he knew he couldn't let it go. As Peter served deep on the right corner, Sunil antipated the move and his return fell of the left hand corner on the other side of the court. Peter made a diving attempt to return the ball but Sunil had hit the shot to perfection. As the reeling in pain Peter got up,he challenged the decision but he lost the challenge. Sunil had his hands up in the air. Peter threw his racket down on the grass. The youngster couldn't take the pain or the loss and was all tears. Sunil was lost in his own glory and forgot to head to the net so that he could shake hands with Peter. Sunil was straight off into the crowds to hug his parents and his wife. The crowd roared him on. Peter kept waiting at the net.

Shehnayiyan bajti hain tumhare ghar
Hamari aah nahi sunta koi
Tum haste haste chal padte ho
Hamara hath nahi pakadta koi
Aisa kya garoor jeet ka tumhe
Bhul gaye tum Hamesha jeetta nahi koi

As the emotional Sunil headed to collect his trophy, he had realised his error. He headed to Peter and bowed to him.

Har kar yun na ho mayoos
Yun kya hi hoga haasil
Har ka kar istikbaal
Ho tu bhi jeet k jashn mein shamil
Fir kar le khud ko tayar
Fir sajegi mehfil-e-jung
Aamne Samne honge tum aur hum
Marle lena maidan aur fir dekh jeet k kya hota hai mehsoos

The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Children at heart

As they got down at the train station in Alpnachstad, the first thing they noticed was the steep train ride they were now supposed to take. It was not hard to believe that the ride from Alpnachstad to Mt. Pilatus is the steepest Cogwheel train journey in the world. It had been 2 months now that Adarsh, Ashish, Mandeep, Mitesh & Aditya had been in Europe for their Student Exchange Programme but still everything gave them something new to relish and savour. As they started with their journey towards the top of Mt. Pilatus, Mitesh (being the information collector in the group) had the weather report ready and informed everybody that its very foggy and snowing atop the hill. This brought a mix of emotions and snow meant fun but fog meant so panaromic views of the beautiful snow clad mountain peaks. But they were anyways bored of panaromic views by now and snow was going to be exciting and it was. 

As the 30 min cogwheel ride came to an end and they walked into the areas of pilatus that were open to tourists, the first thing Ashish said was, " The best decision in my life was to come on exchange cause isne jannat dikhadi" which was correct in every true sense of the word, Switzerland aftelall is the heaven on earth. As they started walking on the snow, they could feel the slight chill because of the cold climate but who cared! Off they went- making snow balls and throwing them on each other, picking up snow and putting into each others' clothes and what not. Ashish & Mandeep thrashed Adarsh & Aditya and in the snow ball competition. Mitesh acted as the judge, whom Aditya and Adarsh continuously accused of being biased. Any bywatcher might have considered them to be 12-13 years old but the child in you never dies and the 12-13 year old in them was full in action that day. 

Adarsh made an attempt to climb a wall being made by the snow, after 3-4 steps, he realised it was not that easy a task as his feet started to freeze but "photo to banti hi thi" so mitesh was up for the task. This made Mitesh want to have a pic of his own in the same position but found it a bit difficult to climb the wall, ended up taking just a step into the snow and Adarsh took the picture immediately so that Mitesh could come out of his not-that-comfortable situation.


Mitesh wanted to cover himself in snow and be a real "SNOW-MAN" and the task was completed by Ashish and Adarsh in a very short time period with Mandeep doing the honours by cicking the photographs. Aditya, being a mumbaiwala couldn't handle the cold for long and went and sat inside but that was after he had had his own share of fun.

As they started to walk back towards the point of departure, Adarsh said, " Aaj to Gloves and jacket ki importance pata lag gayi. Thand ka pata hi ni laga, warna to jam hi jaata" and Mitesh said, " Mujhe to underwear ki importance pata lagi warna aj snow man banne k baad uth na paata." 

Off the went-Smiling,talking,Buzzing.

Friday, October 1, 2010

The Story of Bahadurgarh

This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 15; the fifteenth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.

Brijender was an upcoming writer who was slowly making a name for himself through his poems about nature. His success was quick for a 22 year old. He was currently living in Delhi and was headed to Shamli, the undisputed king of hill stations in India. He was thinking of shifting permanently to Shamli as living in nature would give him more ideas on how to portray nature.

Brijender was sleeping in the train when the train sounded its hooter and disturbed his sleep. He looked out of the window and was astonished to see the beauty being created by the fog getting immersed into the mustard crops in the fields. Thoughts started flowing into his mind and he started to write...

Its all white out there
But I know there is yellow
Heavens must have sent me here
For my poetry to be mellow

Or is it heaven only
For it can't be better
Sitting silently so lonely
As if nothing else matters

As the train came to a halt at the station, he felt a voice attracting him to this city. He thought for a while, what If I get down here only? But, he thought, I have no place to stay here! As he was battling his own mind, the poet in him won the battle against the sane mind in him. He picked up all his stuff and got down at the station. He had no idea what was the name of the place he had got down at. He had no idea what this place had to offer. All he knew was that this place was just like the place he imagined and dreamt of whenever he sat down to write a poem. He had no idea what was he going to do now. He was going around the station when he saw "Bahadurgarh" written on a signboard at the station. He went to the station tea shop and asked for a glass of cutting chai. After having his chai, he asked the tea wala if there is a hotel or a guest house in the village. The chai wala laughed and said, " Sahib, yahan hafte mein ek rail gadi aati hai. Yahan koi hotel kyun hi kholega." So he enquired if he could stay somewhere. The chai wala first confirmed what exactly was he doing there. Though he wasn’t entirely convinced by Brijender's reply, he decided to help. He told him of the village Dak Ghar where he could get a place to stay for a couple of nights. Brijender finally reached the Dak Ghar and after much convincing, he was given a room by the caretaker.

 After staying there for a couple of days, he began to get to know people. He also came in touch with Pritam Bahadur who was the youngest in the line of Bahadurs, who ruled the area with an iron fist. The Bahadur family had faced a couple of tragedies in the last couple of years and now there were just 3 members remaining in the family- Rai Bahadur(50), Rai's wife Sarita Bahadur(44) and their nephew Pritam(22). Rai Bahadur was the name that was given to the head of the family and whenever someone became the patriach, he was rechristened as Rai. Pritam had read a couple of poems written by Brijender which made things easy. Brijender was soon living with the Bahadurs as a guest. His poetry was moving along and he was suddenly writing twice as much as he used to. Only a month had gone by and He had already written 30 poems and 17 short stories which were somehow related to Bahadurgarh. He decided to dedicate a complete book to Bahadurgarh. As he kept on writing, he had a huge collection of writings specifically dedicated to the village of Bahadurgarh which he sent for publication. As he was already a known name in the poetry circles, he easily got a publisher. Soon, the book was released and the sooner it became a huge success. People were getting enamoured by the beauty of this place just by reading about it. The book was released on June 27, 1927 and by the end of the year it had become the largest selling book by an Indian author ever. Bahadurgarh soon became a highly popular destination for High Ranking British officials. The frequency of trains to Bahadurgarh was now up to 3 trains a week. 

Residents of Bahadurgarh also considered Brijender to be their guardian angel. The village was supposed to have been haunted by a spirit. People believed that the spirit had somehow disappeared after Brijender came to the village.

Meanwhile, Sarita Bahadur, the only female left in the Bahadur family had developed a superstition that the bad luck of the family has something to do with the family's name being used in the village's name. She was pestering her husband to change the name of the village.


It was a rainy night in July, 1904 when 3 men held a woman by her arms and dragged her to the railway station of Bahadurgarh. The woman was crying and constantly claiming innocence but the three men were in no mood to let go. They held her tight and pushed her into the train. Al this while she was accompanied by her father who walked and didn’t react even once.

Inder Kumari was the only daughter of the Railway Inspector at Bahadurgarh, Ram Mohan. She had committed the eternal sin of falling in love with a Bahadur, who by tradition couldn't marry outside their clan. Their relationship had reached a point of no return and  she was soon to give birth to their child. The Bahadurs got a sniff of this and summoned Inder's father and asked both father and daughter to leave the village or face dire consequences.

Ram Mohan and Inder moved to the nearest city, Shamli where Ram Mohan got a new job but he never forgave her for what she had done. They rarely talked but he took care of his daughter as a doting father. Inder had made up her mind that she will take care of the child as a single mother. She had studied till 10th standard so she could have got a decent job as well. But, life had other tricks to play with Inder. Just when she thought she could resettle in life, Ram Mohan passed away. The same night, she gave birth to a baby boy. Though she was a strong woman, the death of her father had a huge impact on her. She took the boy and kept him outside a temple with a note-His name is Brijender!

She took the next train to Bahadurgarh. She lived at the station, hiding, for a week. The next week, when the train was arriving at the station, it ran over Inder. This incident was to haunt Bahadurgarh and the Bahadur's for the next 22 years

As Brijesh Bahadur took a flight to London on June 27, 1904 he had no idea he would return never to see his beloved Inder.

Inder was afraid yet happy, she was planning to tell Rai about their yet to be born child after his return. She had already thought a name for the boy(if its a boy)-Brijender.

As the formalities to change the name of the city village had been worked out, a huge function was organised to officially rename the village. The function was to take place at the railway station. Bahadurgarh was now a known name in the entire area so the function had guests like the Lord Anthony Bates, who was the head of the British Empire in North India and Devinder Singh, who belonged to the Royal family of Patti wala.

Lord Bates got on to the stage and announced the new name and pulled the cover from the station's signboard which now read the new name-Inderpur!

Rai Bahadur had a tear in his eye.  He thought of that dreaded day, when he was still Brijesh, and he took that flight to London. He thought of the irony in the boy's name and smiled. This was his tribute to the only lady he had ever loved.

Brijender was proud. He had no idea. 

P.S. - Just thought using coblogger's name is a lucky omen :P

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The Classroom Scene

The Professor enters with a smile
Starts to observe after a while

Someone taking notes
Another Participating loads
Someone playing with a pen
Another thinking how to get 10 on 10

Someone looking down
Another has a frown
Someone wants to sleep
Another already asleep

Someone trying to impress a girl
Another(the girl) giving her hair a twirl
Someone playing with his phone
Another laughing alone

Someone talking to the neighbour
Another tasting lays' new flavour
Someone writing, maybe a poem
Another looking out, adoring the autumn

The Professor leaves with a smile
Keeps smiling for a while

Thursday, September 23, 2010

India is my name

I am dirty & I am populated
Just two out of hundreds of blames
But I am hungry & I am motivated
India is my name

I was wealthy & I was rich
The Golden Bird-My claim to fame
But I was robbed & I was ditched
India is my name

Many a hurdle I have crossed
Have failed for which no excuses that are lame
Still recovering from what I have lost
India is my name

I love all religions & castes
Filled with plateaus & plains
My diversity is so vast
India is my name

My people respect all relations
Not backward But love our shame
Filled with history & tradition
India is my name

I am proud of my people
Lost pride who are trying to reclaim
Growing despite the cripples
India is my name

Not to be confused as weak
I want peace to remain
Through discussion solutions I first seek
India is my name

Giving the world star after star
Across centuries it is still the same
From Zero to Nano car
India is my name

Renowed world over as a great host
My people help & don't think of any gain
Squeezing resources to get the most
India is my name

Home to the Taj & land of the Ganga
Leaving the world amazed
Always flying high is my Tiranga..India is my name!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Indian Problem

Travelling from Paris to Aix-En-Provence (a city in south of France) in a TGV train is an amazing experience. 800 kms in 3 hours-Well o Well! Having a look at the French country side that accompanies you on this journey, or for that matter on any train journey in this beautiful country, brings a whole lot of positive energy. You can’t help but say-This is the place to be!

Coming to France is my first trip outside India and I think it is a country that just has so much that I wish we had in India. You step on to the roads and you will realise that there is not a single piece of waste lying outside. You try to cross a zebra crossing and you will realise the respect people give to people travelling on foot. Look at the light turning red and HALT! Ask anything, say anything and whatever the conversation be; it will always end with “Merci” or “Thank You” as we know it in English. Visit a museum and look at the way the masterpieces have been preserved.

The first thing one looks out for at traffic lights in India is the traffic police, so that you can break the rules at the first given opportunity. People travelling on foot live a nightmare when they just can’t cross the road as no one will stop the car/bike/bus/truck for them. Someone asks you something weird and your reactions vary from “Kya!” to “I am in a hurry” to “Pagal lagta hai” to “Idiot” etc etc. I am not saying everyone does this, but most do.

And I think, France is heaven and India is so far away.
But in the same train, looking at the same country side, I find myself listening to Hindi/Punjabi songs on my phone. Then I start to think on opposite lines. Is it possible that the problem is not with the nation but with our attitude towards our nation? What is it that we have that some of the so called modern countries don’t? My language, my music, my movies and a whole lot of other things will be lost if I ever settle outside India. This makes me introspect-This is something I just can’t have here

Step onto any street of Delhi or Mumbai at any point of the day and you will see a world of activity going on. You find so much energy in whatever we Indians do. The loud music, the high pitch of our speech etc can be taken as us being loud but I think it just shows us to be expressive and passionate. Ask an Indian mother, who is the son of her sister’s brother-in-law’s nephew (not the sister’s son ofcourse  ) and in most probability she won’t take more than a second to answer. We love our relations and these relations are a chain that has no end. I don’t remember when was the last time I had food and someone didn’t take a bite of two from my plate. This is something unknown in this part of the world. Isn’t it amazing to share your food with friends and family, it just shows so much love and affection.

We have some of the most hard working and smart people in the world. An average Indian shop runs from 9 to 9 against 11 to 7 in France. As lovely as the Louvre might be, I can’t help but think-If we had not been stolen from umpteen times by people all across the world, we would still have all our relics and the resources to preserve them. If we had not been the victims of fate, we would still have been the “Golden Bird” and people would have had food to eat and the energy to take care of the surroundings. With 40% of the country not getting proper nourishment, a clean and crisp surrounding is a bit too much to ask as people have a lot more serious issues to worry about.

I am in no way trying to demean any other nation. Ofcourse there is a lot that is there to learn for us from the West. Every country, every society has quite a lot that it can teach the world. We Indians ourselves have started to think that we don’t have anything to share which is totally false. Let us not be critical, let us try to change!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

DCET & The Changing Face of Student Politics

One of my first memories of Panjab University, Chandigarh is Ankit Malik & Puneet Rooprai, two 2nd year seniors coming to my room and giving me my first lesson in Panjab University Politics, in process making me a SOPU member for life. But I also remember me having thought at that time, “ I have not come here for politics, I will study!” That might have been the case with most of the people entering Department of Chemical Engineering and Technology as politics is perceived as a thing for the law or arts guys. But PU is a place where you just can’t stay away from SOPU-PUSU or INSO & ABVP & SOI as well some may say. Looking at it all in hindsight, I don’t think I regret having been an active supporter of SOPU or being “involved” in politics. I think it in reality, it lead me in discovering a totally different side of myself.

I was as staunch a supporter of SOPU as one could be but I was good friends with a lot of people who didn’t support my party. There used to be a tradition in our hostel that some seniors were baptised as fathers of some juniors, based on how close they are to each other. Ironically, my “godfather” was Rahul Ravi- a PUSU member and so were most of his friends. But that never was a bone of contention in our relations. We did our best to make sure that we bring success to our parties but we never fought our such stuff. I don’t remember having seen any Senior-Junior alternations because of politics during my first couple of years in DCET. Now that I am no more enrolled as a student in the University and am not directly involved in the elections or any related activities, I realise things have drastically changed. Or were they changing when I was there?

Panjab University Campus Students Council elections have recently concluded and PUSU won 3 out of 4 seats in the council. I am myself disappointed by the result, but what pains me even more is the Facebook wars going on between various supporters of both parties from my department. What hurts me even more is the fact that in majority of the cases, it is a case of seniors(in some cases- passouts) and juniors having a full frontal attack on each other. Something that was unheard of in “our times.” I don’t know what is the reason for it-It can be the sudden rise of Facebook which has given wings to people’s thoughts, It can be the fact that now “ragging” is banned unofficially as well as officially so juniors probably have no real nor apparent respect for the seniors, it can also be due to our dedicated efforts in making our juniors loyal to our party more than anything else or it maybe due to some other reason or maybe due to a mix of reasons. But, I know it is not good for the future batches of my beloved DCET( can’t get used to UICET).

So just a heartfelt request to my fellow DCETians, support your party as much as you want to, just have some respect for your fellow batchmates, seniors & juniors even if they support some other political outfit. I think you will enjoy your stay in the university much more.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Indian Trip

Jeremy Baines was a 32 year old businessman who had recently taken over from his father as the Managing Director of their £ 500 mn family business based out of Southampton, England. Baines Textiles Co. manufactured clothes under the brand name of YOUNG which was a Semi premium clothing brand & was considered among the best in this segment in the United Kingdom. Jeremy was a commerce graduate who went on to do his MBA from Cambridge University, just like his father. There family business was now 45 years old. It was started by Jeremy’s grandfather Thomas Baines at a local level, taken to a national level by his father Colin & Jeremy aimed to take this business international. Baines’ were already getting their clothes manufactured from Ludhiana in India, which was known for its textiles industry. Hence, Jeremy thought that it would be a good idea to start his international experiment from India, since India was an upcoming economy with people constantly shifting towards branded clothing, there was huge business potential in the country.

For this purpose, Jeremy thought of entering into an alliance with an Indian company which could market the clothes in India as the Indian market couldn’t be handled the same way as it was being done in England. He decided to go and personally meet the two companies that had been shortlisted by the marketing department of the company. Jeremy was being assisted by Rajat Malhotra, an Indian friend who had been of great help while finalising the Indian manufacturing contracts as well. As Baines Co were also in the process of finalising possible alliances in US and Canada as well, Jeremy made sure that the meetings took place on the same day so that he had to spend minimum time out of office. Both the shortlisted companies were based out of Bombay so his meetings were scheduled on the same day, one on both sides of lunch.

Jeremy’s wife, Trish and 6 year old daughter, Stacy were very excited with Jeremy’s India trip and Jeremy agreed to take them along. The Baines landed in India the night before the meetings were scheduled. The return flights were booked for 3 days later. They were to put up in Hotel JW Marriot in Bandra, where the meetings were also scheduled to take place.

Jeremy’s first meeting started at 1000 and in the meanwhile Trish & Stacy left to have a look at the city they had all heard so much about. Stacy was particularly excited about visiting the Gateway of India which she had recently read about in her history books. They were accompanied by Rajat’s wife, Anjali. They spent most of the morning in and around Bandra. They went to Bandra Bandstand and to Juhu beach. They were particularly surprised by the number of people standing outside the houses of Shahrukh Khan and Amitabh Bachhan. Anjali explained to them the reason for this hoard of people outsides the houses. They ofcourse had heard the names but had no idea how big they were. Stacy put into perspective when she said, “So, they are like the Beckhams of India.” Anjali had to agree but added, “Maybe more. Atleast in India!”

At about 5 pm, Jeremy called Trish to inform her that he had decided to award the contract to Arvind Textiles but it will take him another couple of hours to finalise the contract and some other formalities. Since, Jeremy knew about Stacy’s excitement towards visiting the Gateway of India, he fixed a date with his wife and daughter to catch them for dinner at the Taj Mahal Palace at 8 p.m. In the meanwhile, Anjali decided to take the mother-daughter pair for a trip to the south of Mumbai. The resemblance this part of the city had to the English style and architecture was almost impossible to miss. Trish was surprised by how different this country and city was from what all she had read and saw. She had a totally different mental image of the city after recently having seen Slumdog Millionaire, which was currently a huge hit in Britain. But, she was also surprised by how much variety this city had to offer, where some parts of the city were full of slums and filth, another part of the city looked like the home to the elite. It was a city where you could find a group of burqa clad women walking next to a group of women walking in their ultra modern attire and no one seemed too shocked or surprised looking at the other. She felt she had already learnt more about India than she ever could from books and movies. She decided to convince Jeremy for a full fledged vacation in India next time around. Stacy on the other hand was having an experience of her own. Having been brought up in the calm and relaxed environment of Southampton, she was enjoying the mad rush of the city. Where her mother was despising the traffic, she loved it whenever there car stopped at a traffic signal and a line of cars would soon queue up behind them.

At 8:10 p.m., Trish and Stacy reached the Taj Mahal Palace along with Anjali and were greeted by Jeremy and Rajat in the lobby itself. Rajat and Anjali excused themselves citing prior commitments despite a lot of persuasion from Jeremy and Trish. They headed towards the restaurant Rajat had recommended after seeing them off. Trish had always taken a lot of interest in the business so Jeremy updated Trish about all that took place that day. He was rather satisfied with how it had gone. Stacy was getting bored with all the business talk. So it was her chance to explain to her father what all she did during the day and what all she found interesting about the city. Jeremy was also getting excited to learn more about the city. He was glad when Trish proposed the idea about visiting India their next vacation.

They asked for the cheque as the clock struck 10. Stacy was still not satisfied as her wish of visiting the gateway had still not been fulfilled. As they came down to the lobby, Stacy got super excited as she got a glimpse of the Gateway. Jeremy asked Trish to go after Stacy as he went to the washroom.

As Trish and Stacy crossed to the road, and were moving towards the Gateway, they heard gun shots. Trish turned towards the hotel entrance and saw some men entering the hotel with guns in hand. Stacy was crying, Trish had no idea what to do but she knew she had to get her act together. She took Stacy and hid behind the Shivaji Statue in front of the Gateway of India. One of the terrorists who had attacked the hotel noticed them while entering the hotel and came back and shot in their direction. The Maratha Warrior was there to save the mother-daughter duo. As the terrorist moved back in, Trish’s first reaction was to grab her phone and call Jeremy but she just couldn’t reach him. She again tried calling Jeremy but the same result. She tried again and the operator informed her that the phone is switched off. She was panicked and afraid. It had been 15 minutes now that she had been hiding behind the statue. She saw a rush of police vehicles followed by Press Vehicles arrive. She wanted to talk to someone to get some information about Jeremy but didn’t want to move as Stacy was also in danger. She couldn’t leave her alone as she was in no position to stay here by herself. She had been crying from the moment this started. She decided to wait. Her wait went on and it had been an hour when a couple of reporters came towards her to set up there station. She waved frantically as she was still afraid to make noise. One of the reporters saw her and they came running towards her. She explained the situation to them. They told her that its impossible to get inside the hotel but they will try to get any information if possible. Just when her hopes were dying down, she saw a group of 5 men come running out of the Hotel’s front entrance. She saw him running out in his black suit. A look from 100 metres far was still enough to spot him. As Stacy saw her father, she made a run for him but Trish was quick to catch her. She still couldn’t take the risk of letting her daughter run free in that situation. But she couldn’t stop Stacy from shouting, “DAD.” This was enough for Jeremy to spot his daughter. He came running towards his wife and daughter. He came and hugged both of them. This was the
first time after her birth that Jeremy was happy to see his daughter cry as he knew it could have been worse.

The Baines did return for their Indian holiday.They were the first to check into the hotel after Taj Mahal Palace reopened two years later.

A work of fiction,inspired from a real incident

*Dedicated to the 166 men & women who lost their lives in 26/11 terror attacksin Mumbai*

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Volvo Connection

It was a cold January night in Delhi with temperature having fallen to 2 degree Celsius. The rain was making it worse. He had just missed the 0030 Volvo by a whisker. The next Volvo was to leave at 0130 hours. He couldn’t even think of travelling 5 hours in a normal bus in this chilling cold. It being a Friday night meant that there was already a big queue at the ticket counter, which made him realise that even if he had reached on time he wouldn’t have got a ticket for the 12:30 bus. He was no. 10 in the queue which gave him a sense of relief as he was almost certain to get a ticket. It had been a year now since Ansh Arora had been regularly taking this Delhi-Chandigarh Volvo, that too on Friday nights in most cases, but he had still not got used to this mad rush and standing in queues for the bus. The sale of tickets had still not started as the bus was yet to reach the bus stand. The number of people behind Ansh was way beyond the number of seats in the bus. He never understood why people wasted so much time in the queue when they had no hopes of getting a ticket. All of a sudden there was a lot of commotion around the counter as the bus had come and the conductor had taken his seat at the ticket counter. Some people made an attempt to give money to others standing in the front of the queue so that they may buy a ticket for them, which always was accompanied by shouts and abuses from everyone at the back. Suddenly a girl came towards Ansh and said, “Hi Rahul, Here is what you asked for” and handed him a note which read:

Please do me a favour. Buy a ticket for me and I will pay you in the bus .If you don’t have enough money just call for me and ask for it.

Ansh was surprised at first but after reading the note, his first reaction was “Nice Move.” He turned and looked at the girl. Her clothes were drenched with water and water was dripping from her hair. But she still had a certain class about her and her beauty was quite visible. She was wearing a red coloured jacket with blue jeans accompanied with a nice pair of footwear. Ansh had always believed in the philosophy he picked up from a story he had read in school-You can always judge a person by his/her footwear. The story had actually talked about just the colour, but Ansh made it more subjective and if the footwear were to his liking, he considered the person worth talking to. Since the girl passed the footwear test, wasn’t half as bad looking and was certainly pretty clever, he thought he is going to have a nice journey. He thought of making a move of his own and looked at her. She had now changed into a new set of clothes-A black cardigan to go with a new pair of jeans. He said, “Hey, Aamya. Why don’t you grab a couple of packets of chips?” and ended it with a wink. Aamya couldn’t help a smile.

As Ansh got out of the line with two tickets in hand, people had no idea how a 20 something Aamya Chauhan had got her ticket without getting into the trouble of standing in the queue and one person who was supposed to get that ticket would now have to go shivering in a normal roadways bus.

The bus was supposed to leave in about ten minutes and Ansh made a move towards his fellow passenger. Since he had asked for two tickets, it was understandable that they got adjoining seats. As he handed over the ticket to her, she took the ticket and said thanks. Ansh introduced himself, “By the way, Its Ansh. Rahul is too common” to which she replied, “ Mine will still be Aamya.” Both of them started to laugh.

Both of them took their seat in the bus as the bus started its engines. After the initial customaries, Aamya had not shown a lot of interest in Ansh and had got busy with her phone-A couple of phone calls and then some texts. The first thought that crossed his mind was what any single(or maybe not) young male in his early 20’s would have-Whether or not does she have a boyfriend?

Aamya was currently having this conversation with her best friend Tia.

A-What sort of a guy is he. There were 10 people in front of him in line, I could have approached anyone of them but I chose him. Isn’t that a signal enough that I am interested in him? Now does he expect me to bend over and kiss him?

T-I am sure he won’t mind he is just showing attitude? Does he seem like that kind.

A- No, not at all. Hes just so sweet, I don’t think he is at all the attitude types. Already has a girlfriend maybe

T-But you said on the phone that you have not seen him talking on the phone or texting since you saw him

A-Not all couples are like that-talking all the time. Anyways, I am on roaming right now. Can’t message anymore. Will inform you if something happens. Catch ya in the morning. Gn. Tc

Ansh had never been diplomatic with his words so as soon as Aamya kept the phone in her bag, “Boyfriend?” he asked. Aamya just managed to control her laughter and managed to say, “ No, a friend.” This was enough of a signal for Aamya to understand that the guy is interested, maybe a bit shy. She decided to play the waiting card as she didn’t want to show him that she too was interested.

Almost forty five minutes had passed and the bus was about to leave Delhi, Aamya had fallen asleep and her head fell on Ansh’s shoulder. As soon as she noticed, Ansh kept on looking at her beautiful face slowing alongwith the orange lights across the city. He felt an urge to touch her soft cheeks or play with her hair but he knew he will have to control himself. The driver had to put instant brake as a cow turned up in front of the bus. Aamya woke up with the jerk and caught a glimpse of Ansh trying to turn his face, but he was just a bit late. Aamya felt a bit embarrassed but had a smile on her face because after long she had met a guy who was admiring her beauty and wasn’t being ridiculous at that. Most of the guys she met acted too smart and would try and flatter her with remarks about her face and beauty. She was liking the way Ansh was secretly looking at her so she decided to do away with the “never be the first mover” rule as she anyways had made the first move at the bus stand.
“Don’t like talking to girls?” She said

Ansh- Nothing like that. Just that you came and got busy with the phone so I thought you were just interested in the ticket and may think of me as some despo who starts to pester a girl just because he bought her a bus ticket.

Aamya-Well if someone helps me get into a bus which I had no hopes of getting into, I won’t consider him trying to talk as pestering. You think of me as some bitch-Just Interested in the ticket...huh

Having recently come out of a relationship having spanned a good two years, it wasn’t easy for Ansh to start a conversation with a girl or to “hit” on her so as to say. Flirting with some cheeky lines was one thing but actually being involved in a proper conversation was something different.

Ansh-I am sorry. I didn’t mean it like that.

Aamya- Its ok. I am just kidding. So what do you do?

Ansh-I am currently pursuing my MBA from IIM Indore.

Aamya-Oh. So an IIM guy! No matter you think it beyond your level to try and start conversations with girls

Ansh-Believe me IIM guys are the last people on earth who can have that arrogance.

Aamya-What makes you say so.

Ansh- You haven’t seen the kind of girls we have in our batch. We have a popular joke that girls at IIMs should be rather addressed as Non-Males. Even those who are decent looking have hoards of men after them as they are rare. Guys like Chetan Bhagat are rare as he himself has pointed out in his book.

Aamya-I am sure you are exaggerating. It can’t be that bad

Ansh-Well, ya maybe not that bad but if we mellow it down then girls like you won’t take pity on us and we may lose the chance of being considered by some good girls.

Aamya-I take this as a compliment, Thank you. And where were these plethora of words lost before I started this conversation. I was beginning to doubt myself.
Aamya laughed at her own flirtatiousness.

Ansh-Told you, didn’t want you to think of he as some mauke ka fayda uthane wala.

Aamya-Maine bhi to wahi kiya. Bura Kya hai!

Both started to laugh.

Ansh- What about you. What do you do?

Aamya- I just passed out of UIET, Panjab University last year. Currently working with TCS in Mumbai.

Ansh- Oh really. I passed out of DCET, a year prior to you I think.

Aamya thought for a while and asked, hoping she is wrong, “ Are you the Ansh Arora who was dating our senior Isha Singh?”

Ansh was not expecting this at all.

Ansh-Ya. I was the one.

Aamya read(or imagined) a certain reluctance in his voice

Aamya-You didn’t seem to like the question

Ansh-Ah, Not exactly. We broke up some time back. We are still friends but I don’t want my past to hamper any chances I may have in the future.

“Or in the present” she thought and almost smiled. But she had a doubt cropping in her mind-Was he over her, as they were known to be one of the most popular couples in college. People thought they may even go on and marry.

It had been more than an hour since they finally started talking but the last hour went before it came. They both knew there was a chemistry going on but both had some doubts. Will it end as just another crush or will something bloom from this chance meeting?

The Bus halted near Karnal for about 15 minutes. Some people got off the bus, others preferred to sleep inside the cosy atmosphere of the bus instead of the facing the teeth clenching chill. Ansh & Aamya were just sitting when Ansh asked, “Would you like to out on coffee with me?” Aamya was impressed by how Ansh always had a cheeky line for every moment. She had no option but to say yes, she was in awe of this guy from the moment she saw him and the feeling kept getting stronger from the moment he started to talk. But, she added, “ I thought you will never ask me out. And here of all places?”

Ansh was again swift with his reply, “ Can’t take the liberty of being late with everything. Can I?”

It was the most unique first date Aamya had ever had-Having coffee at a roadside joint which isn’t exactly a Barista! But then, nothing in this meeting had been the usual for her. A girl who was no stranger to guys hovering all around her felt strange falling for a guy at first sight. If that wasn’t enough, having to make the first move.

As they got back into the bus, they both felt a bit sleepy but both were trying to get rid of their sleep and the coffee had helped a bit in that regard. Soon they knew where both of them lived, what cars they drive, who were there best friends and all the details one might have thought of getting to know in the first meeting.
This time it was Ansh who slept on Aamya’s shoulder. But, what Aamya did was more or less what Ansh had done. She just kept looking at him. All doubts she had of whether or not he had forgotten Isha were gone but what about him? She could tell from the way he was looking at her throughout the journey that he also felt a connection but was he ready? She thought of calling Tia and consulting but she was afraid that he may get up and will certainly not like to hear whatever she felt like asking. She decided to go with her gut instinct.

As the bus reached Sector 35 , she reluctantly nudged Ansh to wake him up. Ansh had no idea that he had been asleep for almost an hour. She lived in Sector 37 so she generally got down at 35 but she gave it a miss this time. He got up and gave her a smile. She reciprocated. As the bus finally reached its final halt, they both got down . Aamya had decided that she will go whichever way he took her-If he wants to take it forward, she will be glad but if he feels he is not ready, she will just let it be.

Aamya-“So thats it”
Ansh-“Would it be alright if I dropped you home in an auto.”
Aamya’s apprehensions flew away
She just smiled, walked to him & held his hand.

Love Doesn't need time, it just needs a chance

This is my first short story. So your feedback will be highly appreciated and will go a long way in helping me improve in the future.