Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Two Worlds Many Lives

This week India zoomed its way into space looking for answers for questions that has long mystified the world at large. Another event I saw on television actually looked to assume answers by interpreting texts to suit their purpose in the name of god. Both of them very contrasting indeed.

What is interesting is the fact that the day when this great feat happened I saw a documentary on national television about the Taliban way of life and I had an opportunity to compare two completely different world in a radius of few thousand km’s. First thing was a moment of great joy and pride to see India making great strides in science and technology especially in space which one thought was a territory reserved for chosen few. I have recently completed reading a book by our former president APJ Abul Kalam called "Wings of fire". In this book Mr. Kalam actually talks about Indian space odyssey and how it started with a very humble beginning. To see it come of age is very heartening and a great inspiration for all of us. The world has suddenly started taking note of India, and we are being seen as major world power. In this development, women have contributed as much as any men and the example of this was very clearly seen in the launching of the Chandrayan(The lunar satellite) and all the other feat which today we are so very proud of.

Now contrast this with the episode I saw on television where women were beaten for making loud noise with their feet, where display of any body part would invite the wrath of the militia and moral policemen would trod the city looking to make merry on a prey at the first signs of defiance. 

Having seen this and having read both the books of Khalid Hussaini ('The Kite Runner' and 'The Thousand Splendid Sun's') I just cannot sigh away for thanking god for having given me the society that I am in. India for all its failings is a far, far more civilized society. At the same time we also cannot shrug away from the responsibility to better it and make it a model for all to follow. In my last article i had talked of Indian way of life and here i would go one step further in saying that Indian way of life should not only be limited to savings, spirituality or family orientation in fact we should move forward towards building the nation, a opportunity for everyone to perform or excel be it male or female or any individual subscribing to any faith. Also a free reign without any regulation is good for no one and I am of firm opinion that any individual or group not subscribing to the values of Indian constitution should be dealt with very heavy hand. If we can do this and do it with vigor and passion, Indian way of life could be our next biggest export and in the era of strengthening dollar this could bring about handsome return as well………



Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Black Hole

"Black Hole"- well thats what the BFSI collapse sounds like and the tech companies are heading towards tough times.
On an average BFSI firms spend 6-10% of their revenues on technology and as the finanical cirsis is deepening the industry is expecting a cut of 15 to 20% on the total offshore business to which India accounts for 75% to 80%.
The competition is further going to stiffen as the consolidation in the BFSI will trigger revision of existing contracts with their technical partners. Like Merrill Lynch's takeover by BOA would leave satyam computers unsure whether the combined entity will retain it on its vendors list as BOA has been working with Infy and TCS only. Or this kind of a situation might invite price war which remains to be vitnessed in the comming years.

The above article has been carved out from a story in Nov 1 08 outlook by Nandita Datta


Chicken - Breast piece 250 gms
Curd - 5 table spoons
Lemon - 1 small size
Red chilli powder
Green Chillies - 1 medium size
Ginger Garlic Paste - 1 table spoon
Salt and Pepper

The Recipe
Mix - Curd, Lemon, salt, red chillies, lemon , chopped green chillies and marinate the chicken in it for 1 hr.
Meanwhile pre heat the oven at 230 deg.
After one hour put the marinated pices of chicken in the oven on a greased plate for 30 minutes.

The scribbling of a Sunday afternoon....

Watching Howard Hughes happened while my remote worked overtime .

The condition on a late Sunday morning is much like meditation - when your body is completely relaxed , the mind remains in state of active alertness . Like a ninja .. still like lake water but ever conscious of impending danger. Similar is the situation when you've been lying motionless on couch for time untold and the remote in tandem with your mind moves from one channel to other .....Ever alert to the first signs of boredom and spryly moving to next .. this is when u also take deep breaths ..yaaaawwnnnnn!

Following a such a breath of life .. ,,I stumbled upon Howard Hughes's story on the history channel . Howard used to design and construct planes . Also an ace pilot he was known to test flight his own designs when not making movies and planning industrial expansion.

Nov 1, 19 something( post world war II) entire country watched the largest water plane get ready for maiden run in the California waters. H4, as it was called ,was clearly a herculean effort . Critics believed that the plane of this size can never take off . It was three times the size of largest aircraft known to be commissioned for the US air force .

It took five years of non stop work from Howard’s team. While the aircraft was in its last stage of assembly, Howard was test piloting another lighter aircraft. A technical snag in the flight caused Howard to stay in air longer than expected. It is said that he continued with the flight to understand more of the problem ensuing a crash landing in one of the house. This is the third time he tricked death.

H4 project came in middle of whirlwind of government charges against Howard on many contracts he executed for the air force. Howard defended it with all his force .The trauma lasted 6 months.

Back to H4, the plane was finally ready... and amidst all criticism and pressure Howard took H4 into the ocean. The plane was to be run on taxi with 100 reporters on board and an inspector from the aviation ministry.

Howard was categorically told NOT to fly as certain hydraulics remained to be tested. Howard pushed on all engines and pushed the aircraft near take off velocity. While the world waited in anticipation if the H4 could fly, the inspector’s cold eyes would record incident in log and cause h4 to be grounded for ever. Howard also knew it could risk the lives of all on board.

He pushed it further, H4 was airborne and the country erupted in joy as the live commentator broadcasted the scene sitting in the cabin.

It was the only flight H4 ever made. ….But Howard proved every single disbeliever wrong !

History does not get made on couches.... but blogs do . ..he he !!

The US Financial Crisis: Impact On The Indian IT Sector

By Manohar M. Atreya, Head - Technology M&A, o3 Capital Advisors Pvt Ltd,

Friday, October 17, 2008


Between last week and current, RBI 's activity to ease the liquidity situation led to downward revision in CRR in two phases thus injecting 20,000 cr and 10,000 cr into the system... add to this 25,000 cr of farm loan waiver which is being supplied to banks and in a crude fashion convert to dollar denomination ..... this equals a whopping $ 27 billion in a matter of 10 days!!

$250 billion is the quantum of money deployed in last week by US to to keep the economy afloat.
Compare the above nos with this information :
Size of US economy approx $14 trillion
Size of Indian economy approx $ 1 trillion

and we dont even have a subprime related issue .. :)

this is perpective ! .......... smirks chintu !

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Indian Way of Life

The recent stock market plunge has raised many questions about the sustainability of the various economies around the world. The so called G7 are the worst affected and the crises has trickled down to the developing economies and less developed economies. With every passing days we see more bloodbath in the market and no amount of government intervention and policy decision has been able to steam the tide. The situation is very similar to the bull run where no amount of regulatory measures was able to contain the markets and on the contrary it climbed to higher levels with every passing day. 
With US going under severe recession economies around the world will take a hit. It is said the when US sneezes the whole world catches cold, this time US is suffering from acute viral one can only compherehend the woes of other economies.
In India one can already sense the cooling of the economy. Companies have started cutting investments and suddenly cost cutting has become the most important management tool. In such crazy times ...crazy because just the other day everything was hunky dory, no one can be immune to any event. Just the other day indian media went berserk over the sudden dismissal of about 1000 employees of a very prominent airline company. My sense is that it is just the tip of the iceberg and many such news will make headlines in times to come.
All the leading financial institution across the world are cutting jobs and huge layoff is a fear that has gripped ever one in the corporate world especially the ones in financial sector. One can only imagine the plight of people who left their home for a cushy jobs, little did they realize the trauma that awaits them. Most of these men and women would probably be living in a nuclear family having very little to do with parents and siblings, have been a part of the world wide consumerism drive and where EMI's have become a part of their life. 
In India too we will see the rub off effect. Already major airlines have announced the layoff and more will follow the suit. 
In such difficult time one cannot help but wonder weather Indian way of life which is built on family values, advocates savings, gives a slightly conservative approach to life and a spiritual inclination will come in handy. 
No wonder the world is seeking everything Indian from fashion to food, from spiritualism to entertainment and now Indian way of life could be the next big thing in the west...........

Monday, October 13, 2008

News Updates

Hello Everybody!!! In our endavour to constantly upgrade the blog we will be posting and daily news update by the end of the Day.

The update will cover news from the area of Finance, Politics, Lifestyle and Sports and week end updates will carry movie reviews.

Keep Visiting the blog for updates.
How did these guys manage to do this!!! Debt of USD 5.44 Bn with a population of 300 K !!!
Over seas expansion!!!

Iceland battles economic crisis
(02:07) Report
Oct 7 - Iceland takes over its second largest bank and props up its battered currency, the crown, in the face of financial crisis that threatens to overwhelm the economy.
Iceland said it was seeking a 4 billion euro (5.44 billion U.S. dollars) loan from Russia to help it through the financial meltdown and Russia said it viewed the request positively.
The island in the middle of the North Atlantic is home to just 300,000 people, but has found itself on the fault-line of a global financial crisis after a few years of aggressive overseas expansion by its banks and foreign investors have poured money into local projects.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Balancing Act

Starting October, the celebration time in India has just begun. From 2nd October which is celebrated as Mathma Gandhi's Birthday a slew of festivals and holidaying starts and continues right till New Year. This year has been no different apart from the fact that the global crises has firmly gripped the nations and those affected by the turmoil will have really hard time gathering their finances, leave apart holidaying. On Friday i.e. 10/10/08 the Bombay Stock exchange fell by almost 800 points, about 7 % of investors wealth wiped out in a day and about 16% in just a week. India was relatively better off as some of the Asian peers fell as much as 30% in just a week.

Amids this gloom and doom scenario any thinking individual cannot escape the though of ephemeral nature of the wealth in the new economy. The very premises of seeing is believing is being questioned because had that been the case big co operations like Lehman Brothers, Merrile Lynch, Wachovia Corp., Morgan Stanly, AIG and so on would be the most sought after jobs in campuses around the world. The report in newspaper today says that the Indian Steel Tycoon Mr. Lakshmi Milttal is loosing 7 Million Pounds every hour since last one week. 

In India, industrial growth has slowed drastically.In Sweden, Volvo is cutting thousands of jobs. In Japan, which thought it was immune to the market chaos, a credit squeeze seems to be forcing small companies into bankruptcy. Around the world, fears of recession have fed a stock market panic, as worries about toxic assets spread from the financial sector to the credit markets and now to the broader economy.

These events makes you realize the vulnerability of anything and everything in today's times....the most pertinent point is it makes you realize who is in control??

Who is in control ? is the question that keeps coming to me and however hard i have tried, i have never been able to answer it convincingly.  A vist to the Mountains, Beaches, Valleys etc makes you realize how powerful the forces of nature are and probably what has happened over the past few days is a balancing act. Surely nature has its own way of funtioning.........

As we go on to celebrate Durga Puja, kali Puja, Diwali, Christmas, New Year and more, the world events should not dampen our spirts. Infact it should reinforce our believes knowing fully well that the real controls are with some else.....

Contributed by Sac