The Invincible, INS Vikrant

After lots of missed occasions, I finally bought my new bike, Bajaj V15. The fact that it is created with scraps of one of the legendary vessels of Indian Navy, INS Vikrant, the invincible aircraft carrier. Ever since her fate of scrapping was sealed by the Honorable Supreme Court, every proud Indian was sad somewhere within. INS Vikrant had played very vital role in Indo – Pak war of 1971. She was deployed in under the command of Eastern Fleet of Indian Navy to counter any possible advances by Pakistan in and around eastern region of India.

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INS Vikrant missed all the action during earlier wars on the western front as she was docked in her mother port for maintenance. Even when the war clouds were gathering on the horizon, she was not battle ready. But with the resolve of making her battle ready, all guys worked hard and many trials were conducted during her voyage to eastern ports. Moral of aircrew was boosted with the conditional clearance from Naval HQ. As expected Pakistan has deployed their best counter vessel, submarine PNS Ghazi. But with some uncertain events, PNS Ghazi met her fate near Port of Vishakhapattanam, possibly with depth charges laid by INS Rajput or by crash dive forced by Rajput’s appearance.

As war broke out, INS Vikrant was deployed back in action with a target of Chittagong and Cox’s Bazaar harbors. Aircrafts from the carrier made numerous sorties and struck those docks sinking and destroying most of the ships and created a blockade around the ports leaving them unusable for months. In the later phase of war, aircrafts from Vikrant also targeted the cantonment area of Chittagong destroying several army barracks.

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The crew of INS Vikrant exhibited bravery and gallantry in the war which earned them two Mahaveer Chakra and twelve Vir Chakra medals for their part of war. She continued to serve in later years after undergoing two major modernization refits. In January 1995, she was laid up and then formally decommissioned in 1997. Indian Navy converted it into a museum. Later in 2012, her condition was deemed as unsafe for public and museum was closed.

In 2013, the fate of INS Vikrant was sealed by the Ministry of Defence and the scrapping auctions were declared. During 2013 – 14, legal petitions were filed to avoid her fate of getting scrapped. But as if it was her fate, even Honourable Supreme Court gave nod to the scrapping. Memorial was constructed with the scrap metal of the vessel in Naval dockyard of Mumbai. Later in 2016, Bajaj unveiled their motorcycle crafted from scraps of INS Vikrant. Since then it was my dream to buy one of the bikes and be a proud owner of “The Invincible”.

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Photograph from NDTV Car and Bike

 

Every time, I ride my bike, the insignia of INS Vikrant on the petrol tank of the bike makes me feel proud of my armed forces and especially Indian Navy for their great service to our country. I salute to all the brave officers serving our country for their courage, gallantry, and chivalry. Jay Hind!!!

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I am participating in A to Z challenge with Blogchatter and this is my take on day 22 challenge. “V is the invincible INS Vikrant. You can find my other posts from this challenge here.

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Unstoppable you

master-your-mind.jpgWhen I decided to start writing about how the mind is unstoppable, my mind decided to hit me with this very same ability. Till now, I was totally clueless about what to write for today’s theme. It’s almost end of the day. Even if, it was an extremely busy day the office, back of the mind, I was trying to think about what to write about. Everything else was boiling up in the cauldron of my mind. It even crafted an amazing story idea which surely you all will love to read. But nothing was coming along and search for the theme of letter ‘u’ just went on.

At the end, I started typing random combinations of letters like ue, ur, ui, up on google to see if something hits and an idea will buzz out. When ‘un’ came along in the most random keyword typing, ‘unstoppable’ was the second google suggestion and my buddy kicked in. Series of combinations started happening, Unstoppable car, unstoppable human, unstoppable machines, unstoppable beast, “unstoppable mind”. It ranged the bell and I felt like some wrestler who had won a tiring multi-round match. It was decided, “unstoppable mind” is what I shall be writing about.

And starting from random keyword searching to arrival at the subject, this buddy did in less than a minute. In this minute, our this lightening fast buddy read at least 4 combinations of every keyword that I put in, checked if it can come with anything and moved on. Sometimes, I get scared by the sheer speed at which mind can drift to some other topics.

Even right now, when I am typing this, my mind is also thinking about the things to be done tomorrow. Isn’t it odd it’s even thinking about what will be the theme for ‘V’? So many thoughts just keep flashing in our mind. I am sure, at least half of them must be wasted because they go unregistered. I wonder how many great stories, how many amazing songs we have lost because of this unstoppability of our mind. One really need to practice to hold on to one thought.

I am sure all the poets out there have experienced it. They come up with a couple of lines for a poem. They love them so much and wanted to elaborate and create nice poem around that thought. But at the moment they are busy and couldn’t note that though. But by the time they manage to gather some free moments and think about it, puff… It’s gone. They can get the glimpse of it partially but the exact lines? Nah, they are missing, floating out there somewhere in our mind palace. Out of our sight.

But there is also a nice part for this ability to be unstoppable. You can imagine anything and create classic fictions. We couldn’t have invented so many things which make our life easier if the minds of their inventors would have stopped at some moment before they got this idea?

Whatever I am writing here is really ranting about this ability of nonstop thinking of our mind. Like I said at the start, I was clueless and by far I have managed to write this stuff in last 15 min. Isn’t this the greatness of this genius sitting inside everyone one of us? I pray, our mind will always be UNSTOPPABLE.

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I am participating in A to Z challenge with Blogchatter and this is my take on day 21 challenge. “Unstoppable you. You can find my other posts from this challenge here.

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Table for two

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Sketch by Natoly

It’s 9-30 am, first Sunday of August. Hakuna Matata is a cozy little place on the busiest part of the town. It’s famous in the town for their delicious breakfasts and amazing coffee. Being early Sunday morning, streets are rather quiet. As luck would have it, it’s drizzling. Just like a year ago. Kishore is waiting for Ramaa, right at the corner, where he was waiting last year, in blue denim and white shirt. White and blue, her favorite combination. They had planned this celebration breakfast last week only. It was his idea to celebrate the anniversary on first Sunday of August rather than on the date. Kishore knew he is 15 min early as usual and Ramaa is going to be late. She loves to make him wait.
Kishore enjoyed these waits, even today, he is imagining how her entry would be. Will it be like it was a year before, or will there be something different? After sharing nice friendship for a couple of years, Kishore has opened his heart on the first Sunday of August last year. Kishore’s mind flew back to last August.
Kishore was very nervous when he reached the cafe. He had decided to take this step with a tension of losing her friendship. He had arranged morning coffee with the very specialty of Hakuna Matata, delicious crisp parmesan omelet. He knew her love for cheese and coffee. He was dressed in very casual jeans and a t-shirt. He had booked the table by the same window out of which he was waiting very eagerly.
After making him wait for half hour, Ramaa showed up at the place. They shook hands, followed by side hug and he led her to the table he had kept ready for them. Soon they were seated, the waiter greeted them and served the coffee. Ramaa was shocked by this prompt service. Hakuna Matata was famous for delayed service. It was the exact reason for it being famous among couples and people who wanted to have long chats. Aroma of coffee hit the brain and she thanked Kishore for coffee and sipped it. Kishore was almost frozen in his mind as the moment of confession was nearing. He was almost silent.
Ramaa on the other hand, unaware of the storm in his mind, was busy chattering as usual. But suddenly it ringed in her head and she paused. She spanked his hand and asked, “Kishore, what’s happening dude, not a word since I am here? Have you left your tongue at home?” and suddenly he burst out, “Ramaa, will you be my girlfriend? I love you very much”
This was not anything like Kishore had imagined. The moment passed, words were out and now he couldn’t change it at all. He was cursing his tongue, why didn’t he just kept silent like he was before. His face was almost flushed with helplessness. Ramaa was also stunned and jaw dropped for a second and the wave of laughter hit her. She was laughing like mad. Kishore was getting restless with her laugh. He was about to leave the table to hide. Suddenly, Ramaa stopped laughing. She held his hand and she said: “I love you too, Kishore”. Kishore relaxed instantly and color returned to his face. She held his hand and pressed warmly.
The warmth of hand brought him back to present, Ramaa was standing next to him in a white dress with blue floral design. Her face was glowing with a beautiful smile. He welcomed her with a warm hug. He presented her a bouquet of white lily and took her in the cafe. Kishore had reserved their “Table for two”

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I am participating in A to Z challenge with Blogchatter and this is my take on day 20 challenge. “Table for two”. You can find my other posts from this challenge here.

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I am Sherlocked

Sherlock Holmes in a 1904 illustration by Sidney Paget.

Elementary Watson, Elementary. The very catchphrase of Sherlock when it comes to his methods of deductions. But I have to credit my fascination for the 221B Baker Street to the creator of भा रा भागवत (B R Bhagwat), creator of amazing character of Faster Fene. He had done a great job of bringing this legend of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in Marathi. He had published set of 6 books of Sherlock short stories in Marathi. It used to be a great achievement to get your own entire book set for me when I was in school. You have to work hard to get that set in your hands.

After one of the hard work, I was gifted with this set which covered all the classics from hound of the Baskervilles, the adventure of spotted tie, six Napoleons, the red-headed league and much more. I still have that set of books with me. I like to visit those Marathi stories even if now I have read the original works of Sir Arthur. The Very first story of ‘A study in Scarlet’ takes you to 221B Baker Street and you rarely come out of that place ever in your life. I think this is the only work of fiction which had made such a huge impact and the property at the real address is dedicated to Mr. Sherlock Holmes, Consulting Detective with the blue plaque by London officials. Whenever I will visit the city of London, maybe I won’t visit the Parliament or London Bridge. Madame Tussaud’s, London will also be down on the list. But 221B Baker Street is going to be the place which will not be missed in the trip.

Jeremy Brett as Sherlock and David Burke as Dr. Watson

It is very rare for me to like adaptations of books as film or TV series. But by this date, Sherlock have never failed in any form. Let it be 1984 TV series of classic cases based on work of Sir Arthur by Jeremy Brett (Sherlock) and David Burke (Dr. Watson) or modern reimaginations of classics in form of two classic films from recent years by Robert Downey Jr. (Sherlock)  and Jude Law (Dr. Watson). And current TV series of Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman takes it to another level by bringing Sherlock in this 21st century. Obviously, to bring HIM in this century, stories are tweaked and twisted but the essence of Sir Arthur’s work is preserved. I am all excited for its new season which will be released in 2018. Maybe for next A to Z challenge, I will write about it.

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BBC Sherlock with Benedict Cumberbatch

When I was going through web pages about this legend, I stumbled upon the treasure of old films of Sherlock stories by Basil Rathbone and a comic take on Sherlock in form of spoof short film by John Cleese. I am now on the hunt of these films so can get more dose of Sherlock in my blood.

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I am participating in A to Z challenge with Blogchatter and this is my take on day 19 challenge. “I am Sherlocked”. You can find my other posts from this challenge here.

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Ruskin’s Rusty

Ever since I took my first dive in English literature, Ruskin Bond has been my one of the favorite author. His stories have fascinated me since my first read. I don’t know how many times I have reread them. But for some reason, Ruskin’s Rusty always have dodged me. It’s not the case that I didn’t get a chance to buy it before or it was out of print. When your bestie is with you and you both are very crazy about books, some things just click. I know one should not judge a book by its cover but guys, this edition of “The room on the roof” is so irresistible with a fabulous watercolor cover which you can’t just ignore and move on. We both bought it. That day, I changed my topic for ‘R’ of this A to Z challenge. It can’t be anything other than “Ruskin’s Rusty”

Just like any other Ruskin Bond book, it doesn’t let you leave the book without finishing the story. Or should I say, just like this book his all other stories hold you until you finish the reading? This is the first book Ruskin ever wrote. My copy being the special edition for the 60th anniversary of this award-winning book. It comes with a bonus of introduction by Tom Alter, and Ruskin’s special preface telling us the story covering the time past 60 years of this book. Eye catching water-color illustrations by Gunjan Ahlawat comes with the classic words of Ruskin as the special feature of this special edition.

As this is the first novel in the Rusty series, It introduces us to an Anglo-Indian boy from his late teens living his unhappy life with his stern guardian, who elopes the house of his guardian to live among his friends from the town of Dehra. It is fascinating to read how life can take turns so dramatically without giving any signs for the same. One fine day, Rusty is with his friends enjoying the hustle of bazaar, enjoying baths on the common tank in the town, eating chaats with his buddies, and then one by one, his well-wisher walk on different paths of their lives. To know what happens when lonely Rusty takes decision to leave Dehra for England, you better grab your copy. I am sure you won’t leave it until you get the answer of this question.

You can grab your copy at

Amazon

Flipkart

And a bookstore near you

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I am participating in A to Z challenge with Blogchatter and this is my take on day 18 challenge. “R is about Ruskin’s Rusty”

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Playback Queen – Asha Bhosle

I am sure, there won’t be a single soul in India who doesn’t know the name of this playback queen. Asha Tai is ruling our minds ever since she recorded her first song. Record keepers must be tired of keeping the record of the sheer number of her songs. List of the languages in which she had sung is also lengthy one. Though it is said that music doesn’t need language to communicate, but film songs do. If you know the language, you will enjoy the song with more connect with it. Whenever I get a chance to listen to this queen, my ears get drenched in the showers of heavenly voice.

You name the music type and you will find a song already recorded by Asha Tai. She had rocked the world of film music, pop and she poured her soul in ghazals, bhajans, traditional Indian classical music, folk songs, qawwalis, and Rabindra Sangeets. Recently she had recorded an album of Marathi ghazals by Suresh Bhat set to the tunes of rock music. We all know about her musical relationship with O P Nayyar, Khayyam Sahab, S D Burman and Panchamda. Today, if I sit to list my favourites by her, I am sure I can make an another entire set of A to Z posts on each alphabet. But I am bringing you full 10 songs list  with mix of her hits, Marathi and Hindi. I am sure you all will enjoy the songs by our beloved Playback Queen

Tu tu hai vahi

Film: Yeh waada Raha

https://youtu.be/XMUorZkMBow

 

Jawani jaane man

Film: namak halal

 

Mujhe rang de

Film: Takshak

 

In ankhonki masti me

Film: Umrao Jaan

Raat Akeli hai

Film: Jewel thief

Kevha tari pahate

Tarun aage ratra ajuni

Chandane shimpit jaashi

Mage ubha Mangesh

Jai shaarade vageshwari

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I am participating in A to Z challenge with Blogchatter and this is my take on day 17 challenge. “Q is of the Queen”

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