Sunday, July 06, 2008

World War - II, Pagoda Hills, Rangoon
Capt. Sam Manekshaw leads British Battalion "A" company against Japanese Army, captures the hill despite losing half the battalion, but severely wounded in stomach and liver ridden with 9 bullets.

Major General Cowan to Capt. Manekshaw: "A dead person cannot be awarded a Military Cross."
(pins his own Military cross on Capt. Manekshaw and gets him to Rangoon hospital)

Surgeon to Manekshaw: "What happenned?"

Manekshaw: “Oh, a donkey kicked.” [1]

The surgeon decides that if a soldier could have such a sense of humour at that critical hour, he must operate to save him. Capt. Manekshaw survives and and eventually rises to become India's eighth army chief.

"The prime minister, along with the army, navy, and air-force chiefs, all missed his funeral—which was a modest one held in Tamil Nadu in the south, not a grand one in the capital. His friends grumbled that even foreigners such as Lord Mountbatten were afforded greater respect in death. Bangladesh, however, paid grateful tribute to his part in the nation’s foundation." [2]
His last words were “I’m OK”

Field Marshal Sam Hormusji Framji "Sam Bahadur" Jamshedji Manekshaw MC (April 3, 1914June 27, 2008)

My salutes. My tributes. You deserve better. Rest in peace.

[1] Wikipedia
[2] The Economist

Thursday, July 03, 2008

I believe in people

There is an essay series on National Public Radio called "This I Belive". I kind of used the same title theme here.

I believe in the general good in people. People are simply the same no matter their nationality, color, race, caste, religion, etc. Everybody have in some sort the similar aspirations in life. A simple goal that every one chases nowadays is to lead a peaceful and happy life.

Scientifically speaking, every single person on this earth is made of the same ingredients (cells, tissues, organs, etc). It is the current way of life that has made us more of a machine than a human. The current way of life makes us think just about ourselves and not think about the problems that plague the very existence of our species. Like the video above, all that we lack are examples like the little boy trying to push the tree out of the road. One person cannot be everything. That's simply not possible. But each can set examples to others in their own domain or field of work. By doing something as simple as the little boy did.

I believe in the common good that people have inside them and does not even know that they possess in them. I believe that common good has the capacity to bring about the positive changes to the society. I do not believe in blaming the government for every mess we have in the society. Because the govt is our creation. We only voted (or not voted) them to power. The change has to happen from the bottom-up. We have lots of examples for the forces that spoil the society. Its every where around us. All we lack are the examples like that little boy.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Hitting the Road:Teaching module - Draft 1

Idea generated for schools so far
  • Teach kids to make their own notebooks.
How does this help?
    • non-availability of free notebooks @ govt schools
    • potential means to earn
  • Teach kids of appropriate age about technologies related to clean energy like solar energy
    • How tap solar energy
    • How the market is growing etc
How does this help?
    • creating experts in a market of demand for the future
  • All the soft-skills appreciated in a corporate environment
    • committing to a task of reasonable difficulty and completing it on time
    • being regular with work taken up and establishing proper communication about updates/possible delays
How does this help?
    • time-management, probably study better while being good at extra-curricular
    • develops proper attitude and work-ethics and improves job-prospects
  • Safety
    • Basic fire-safety
    • First-aid and emergency response
    • Details of phone numbers, addresses of hospitals in vicinity.
How does this help?
    • Duhh......!
  • Community activity
    • Some kind of an activity that sensitized them
  • Community activity
    • Some kind of an activity that sensitized them to importance of sanitation, public health, environment etc.