Sunday, November 13, 2005

Rotation Policy-Why it is good?

Indian team has just won the one day series against Srilanka 6-1 drew 2-2 with South Africa and won comprehensively against Srilanka in Test. India started the series against Srilanka as underdogs as they were ranked 2nd in the world behind Aussies.

How could we achieve this? I believe that the policy of rotation clicked here. Having more than one person for a particular spot motivates every player to do his best. That means complacency never creeps in. Till this series "Super Stars" of Indian cricket have taken their place for granted. Now they know if they don’t play they will be kicked out of the team.

Again the new Indian coach Greg Chappell has given importance to current performance and form rather than "fame" of a player in selecting him to the Indian team. I think this is very important. This is the main reason why Australia is the best team in the world. Steve Waugh was dropped from the Aussies one day team when he played below potential in just one tournament. The Australian selectors always give importance to performance rather than the previous reputation of the players and the results are here for us to see.

Having more than one person for a position is good in another respect. Take the core of Indian batting in Test Cricket: Tendulkar, Dravid, Laxman and Ganguly (of course if he gets selected again). They are all around 32 and will have to retire in 3 to 4 years. If we don’t groom youngsters now the "Team India" will be like present West Indies team.

West Indies was the best team in the world till the early nineties. They had world class players. They had Desmond Haynes, Greenidge, Richards, Richardson, Clive Lloyd, Marshall, Holding, Ambrose, Walsh etc etc. They forgot to bring in young talents to the team when these greats were there. They all retired by the early nineties and from them on this team is struggling.

Aussies have never felled into this trap. Even the players like Allan Border, Mark Waugh, Lehman were dropped and they were forced to retire. Who can forget about Jason Gillespie, who had one bad Ashes tour and he is out of Austrialian squad.

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Thursday, November 10, 2005

Is it really necessary?

When I went to India last year for my wedding I visited one of my family members. They have a 11 year old daughter who is studying in 6th standard in an esteemed school in Trivandrum. I went there at around 6 pm and I was expecting her to be back from school.

But to my surprise, her father told me that she had gone for tuition. I was curious and asked him what the subject was and he told me it was Social Studies (History and Geography). He went on to explain that she has tuitions for all subjects and for Math she is being tutored at two places!! Her mother was telling me that she used to stand first in her class and now her rank is only 3rd. So they decided to give her more tuition. She wants her daughter to be "a doctor or at least an engineer" (This was the same phrase used by that girl's mother).

The girl's schedule is like this on a working day. She has tuition from 6.00 am to 8.00 am on all weekdays. Her school bus comes at 8.30 am. She is back from school at 4.30 pm and her tuition starts again at 5 pm.

At around 7.10 pm the girl comes home after tuition. Her mother immediately orders "Take bath and study".

While driving back from her house so many thoughts went through my mind. "Are her parents fair on her?", "Is it necessary to burden kids like this at a young age?", "Will this serve any desired purpose?”” Are they denied their childhood pleasures?”... My thoughts went on and on...

At this point I looked back to myself as to what a kid I was. I completed my 10th standard with 90% marks, plus two with 80% and secured a merit seat in an engineering college (those were the times when only 8 engineering colleges were there... not like today where you have engineering colleges at all bus stops). I could successfully complete my BTech, could do MS in US and now PhD.

I NEVER IN MY LIFE GOT A FIRST RANK IN ANY CLASS. In fact during my school days in Christ Nagar the highest rank I ever got was 21 in a class of 50. My range was always between 25 and 35. My parents used to ask me to "Study" but never had they expected me to get a 1st rank.

Instead of putting pressure on the kids to get a rank and come first in class, what the parents should do is help their kid see the world. The parents should help develop the overall personality of the kid. They should teach them what is right and what is wrong. They should teach them how to be compassionate to their fellow beings. They should tell them the importance and power of learning.

If the parents teach their kid the value of life, he/she will scale new heights and be successful in life. On the other hand if the only thing the parents tell their kid is "u should be an engineer or doctor", there is a very high chance of the kid ruining his future.

Parents - Teach your kids how to see the world and how to become a good human being and not how to “somehow” stand first in the class
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Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Trivandrum Loksabha byelections-Who will be the winner?

I always loved to be in Trivandrum when campaigning for elections take place . The announcement by vehicles about the various candidates, posters all over the place, daily speeches by politicians in Gandhi Park daily during election time all attract me.

I am very sad that I cannot be part of the campaign for the Trivandrum Loksabha byelection to be held on 18th of this month. I have casted my vote 3 times for Loksabha elections(1996, 1998 and 1999). I couldn't vote last time as I am in US. This time also I will miss my valuable vote.

The main contest for this election is between Congress candidate Mr V S Shivakumar and CPI leader Panniyan Ravindran. BJP has fielded the former state President C K Padmanabhan as its candidate. I was thinking a lot about the relevance of this election and how much importance the residents of Trivandrum should give to this election.

Both the Congress and CPI(M) are doing lot of mud slugging during this campaign. The funny thing is that who ever wins this election will go on and support Dr Manmohan Singh's government. Thus by making allegations and counter allegations these parties are taking the voters for a ride. If a common man ask the question "Why should I vote for this election?" I don't think it is irrevalent.

Both fronts do not have any values or principles and they are making mockery of democracy. When Omman Chandy denied Mr Balakrishna Pillai's ministerial berth he went nuke and corner of Kerala bombarding Congress and Omman Chandy. Now he is back in UDF and campaigning for Congress. Not long ago CPI (M) was spitting venom on Karunakaran ( CPI (M) never used to tell K Karunakaran, but always use to tell "Kalla Karunakaran"). Now these same people have no shame to share dais with Leader.

Now coming to my prediction of election results-I believe the polling percentage will be much low (around 60%) because the common man wont come to vote as he doesn't see any relevance to this election. I believe LDF will get around 50,000 votes due to its alliance with DIC and another 50,000 votes due to the strong anti incumbency prevailing in the state against the Congress government. BJP which had secured about 2.25 lakh votes last time should get around 1 lakh votes. The remaining votes should go to UDF and LDF by a ration of 3:1. This means LDF should win by a margin of between 50,000 to 1 lakh votes.

Predictions apart, let us hope whoever wins will serve the people of Trivandrum with dedication and sincerity (do politicians know the meaning of these words????)

Whoever is the winner, the loser will be the common man
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