Showing posts from January, 2011

The word "Opposition"

Always wonder why do they call it "opposition party" or leader of "opposition"? The word itself is so full of negativism, no one can expect a positive outcome from the person or he party. And our political leaders live that word breathe in - breathe out. They simply know to oppose whatever is proposed by the ruling party. Isn't there a better word for this row? A word that will push positivity, that will inculcate constructive criticism? Person or party playing that role could then take it quite "literally" :)

Republic Day - some random thoughts

As I attended the republic day flag hoisting ceremony at Mrunmay's school and now while watching the "RD Parade " on television, I have mixed feelings. On one side I am immensely proud about our nation, at the same time I keep on wondering about what kind of society my son would have 15-20 years down the line. Some random thoughts on this republic day: Why is the Republic day boiled down to flag hoisting ceremony? (Same is true for Independence day..) Why do schools feel that is the ONLY way to inculcate patriotism in the kids? How many people from this vast population really know what is a "Republic Day"? I want to see the RD pared LIVE. Don't know when would it happen... I want my kid to be loving this country. (Frankly I don't know what does that really mean..) Would my son be presented with equal opportunities to shape his career and life? Or he would also keep on feeling that he should migrated to some "apparent" equal countries? What

MNP, 3G and mobile operators

I have been watching the current happenings in the Indian mobile market and have made some interesting observations. Idea Cellular has launched a big campaign about Mobile Number Potability. I blogged about my view on MNP here . Interestingly, MNP can not work without collaboration and n/w-s/w readiness from all the mobile operators in a circle. And even then only one of the operators is investing so much money in the advertisement and others are completely ignoring it. Similarly only Airtel seems to be behind projecting 3G as their USP . While this is a true that almost all the players have the 3G Bandwidth available and would be launching it more or less this quarter (Vodafone and Airtel are definitely launching it this quarter, no clue about Idea 3G yet) Vodafone is just continuing with it's sluggish advertisements of "happy to help" and "wherever you go". No signs of MNP and 3G being advertised. [Interesting Update: While searching for Airtel website, Googl

Use of Facebook by Government Organizations

After Pune Traffic Police, it is now PMPML (Pune Mahanagar Pariwahan Mahamandal Limited) who has started using the social media to promote their drives and improve their services through crowd sourcing. Pune Traffic police conducted some nice initiatives by inviting the citizens to post the photographs of offending vehicles (parking in no-parking area/non-standardized number plates/encroachment by private offices/restaurants on public parking space etc). The police ensured that the complaints registered so are addressed, the update is posted on the Facebook along with the action taken and the concerned police station/police officer's name/contact no. Although this is just a start, if continued persistently, this will go a long way to help improve the traffic chaos in the Pune city. Now that PMPML has also launched its own facebook page , we'd see some similar action on this front from PMPML. I have my own reservations about PMPML and hence about this initiative too. As part of

Fare Hike during peak season

Recently every newpaper and channel was flashing the stories of how airlines are looting customers when there was more demand. When there was political storm in Maharashtra and Karnataka, all the local political leaders were running to Delhi to make their own position strong and in this fight, the airlines decided to cash out the high demand vs low availability. Mumbai Delhi economy ticket was sold at Rs. 30000 to Rs 40000 during that period. The air prices may not be pinching you, me and many of us. However, what pinches is the mentality of cashing out to unreasonable levels during the peak demand period. The same mentality is observed even in the private travels business where they have point-to-point service (intercity buses). During Diwali, the fares are almost triple. Actually speaking the fares during normal demand period are set considering lower occupancy (may be 60 to 70%?) and if the bus is fully occupied, the travel is set to make good profit (to the tune of 30-40%?). Consi

Big Bazaar

I happened to visit Big Bazaar today after a long time and was happily surprised not to have so much rush in the mall. I had always discouraged myself from visiting Big Bazaar for two reasons. One - the huge rush and second the congested arrangement inside the mall. I found More comparatively better than any other super market including Reliance Fresh and Spencer's . Last time when I visited Big Bazaar it had impressed me with the variety of grocery items available under one roof. This time I was amazed by the speed with which the billing was completed at the cash/credit counter. While the counters were still having a big queue and each customer having tens of items, I could not ignore that each item was getting correctly read by the bar code reader in the first attempt itself. It was a good to see this seamless operation as I have kind of got used to bad bar codes/readers in the More super market. It has been a constant observation that almost 15-20% items will be required to b