Feeds:
Posts
Comments

My Views On Bollywood

By

Sharada Iyer

There is not a single person among his fans and co-stars who has escaped the charm of Shashi Kapoor’s incredible good-looks! It was an integral part of his affable personality which drew the audience towards him and made him a hugely popular star especially a ‘romantic’ star of the sixties and seventies. His easy-going genial and charming real-life personality probably rubbed off on all his on-screen characters making them immensely likeable and endearing.

shashi-kapoorBut his good looks sometimes overpowered the extremely talented actor hidden behind the charming face. He remained a rare actor who straddled the worlds of theatre, popular Hindi cinema, art films as well as English films effortlessly and quietly without creating much brouhaha. He never liked to boast about his achievements for they stemmed from his sheer love for acting.

THEATRE MAN

He started his career as a theatre actor learning the ropes from…

View original post 1,504 more words

Advertisements

A recent trip to New Delhi gave me an opportunity of calling upon His Excellency Joao da Camara, the Ambassador of Portugal in India. He was kind enough to spare some time for me to be able to present my book ‘Como Sobreviver Na Selva Empresarial’ to him.

 

It happened to be a day when the smog enveloping the capital city of India was at its worst. A brief meeting with an amiable person like His Excellency left one breathing easier. The brief encounter proved to be an uplifting experience. His grace, warmth and hospitality yet again reminded me of the genial and affable disposition of the people of Portugal.

The informal meeting took place in his tastefully done up office. The frankness with which he spoke and the warmth he exuded was typical of the people of character, resource and rich culture he represents.

He spoke warmly of the centuries old connection between Portugal and India. He mentioned families of Indian origin who have made Portugal their home for the past six generations and who make it a point to scout around for Indian brides who would eventually marry the sons in their families.

He mentioned the richness of India’s ancient culture and the diversity of its citizens. He turned out to be a close friend of Ms Clara Nunes dos Santos, a senior diplomat in the Portuguese Government, whom I was fortunate to have met in Oslo a few months back, when she was the Ambassador of Portugal in Norway.

Recapitulating the historic ties

It may be recalled that Bartolomeu Dias, a Portuguese explorer, was the first one to have crossed the ‘Cape of Good Hope’ in the year 1488, opening the sea route to India.

Vasco da Gama, another nobleman from the household of the King of Portugal, finally landed at the port of Calicut on the 27th of May, 1498, heralding an era of European dominance of India.

In 1510, the capital of Estado Portugues da India (Portuguese state of India) was transferred from Cochin to Goa. In the 17th century, Goa became the capital of the vast Portuguese empire which spread from Mozambique to Nagasaki, controlling the entire Indian Ocean trade.

When India gained independence from British rule in 1947, relations between the two countries turned a wee bit sour over Portugal’s refusal to surrender its enclaves of Goa, Daman, Diu, Dadra and Nagar Haveli. Indian military intervened, ending Portuguese rule over these areas in 1961. Eventually, with the signing of a treaty in New Delhi in 1974 with the new democratic Portuguese Government, amicable bilateral relations were restored.

Trade and commerce between the two countries has only looked up thereafter, even though much potential remains to be explored in the future. During the visit of Prime Minister of Portugal His Excellency Antonio da Costa to India during January 2017, as many as six agreements have been signed between the two countries. These also include an agreement on defence cooperation.

One feels happy to have made a very modest contribution towards an exchange of softer management ideas between Portugal and India. The book authored by me first got published in Portugal. The original English version, ‘Surviving in the Corporate Jungle’, followed thereafter.

(Related Posts:

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2017/05/30/a-meeting-with-the-ambassador-of-portugal-in-norway

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2017/06/21/a-meeting-with-the-minister-counsellor-of-portugal-in-switzerland

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2017/10/14/surviving-in-the-corporate-jungle-a-video)

(Note:

This is how you can lay your hands on the Portuguese version of the book, launched in Portugal during March, 2016, courtesy Liberty Seguros and Vida Economica.)

(The English version of the book, entitled ‘Surviving in the Corporate Jungle’, was released recently.)

 

 

ashokbhatia

In an earlier post, we had looked at the various leadership styles which emerge from an upgraded Blake Mouton Grid which has three axes: Concern for Production, Concern for People and Concern for Ethics. One of the styles we came across was that of the Charmless Charlies.X Y Z upgraded

These are hapless souls who could not care less for getting results, or, for that matter, for the people who slog their butts out for them. Issues of ethics or improprieties involved in any decision-making do not appear to affect them.

They rank poorly on all the three dimensions – Concern for Production, Concern for People and Concern for Ethics. In terms of an upgraded Blake-Mouton Grid, they would earn a rating of 1,1,1. These are CEOs who, having reached their level of incompetence, exemplify the Peter Principle.

In large organizations, these could be very senior managers who carry a rich legacy of…

View original post 280 more words

The more the thoughts dwell on the fate of Wodehousitis in the decades to come, the more the soul recoils in horror. One peers into the future, and shudders at what one sees there.

Most youth of today are blissfully ignorant of the sunlit valleys of Plumsville, where rivulets of subtle humour offer a gentle reprieve from the stress of an incessant exposure to social media. Where roads are lined on both the sides with trees which offer low hanging fruits of eternal wisdom. Where characters offer solutions to such delicate challenges in life as handling loopy soul mates, diet-obsessed girl friends and spouses, obdurate aunts, thrifty uncles, moody pigs, overbearing dogs and sleepy cats.

Unless prompt steps are taken through proper channels now, the epidemic of Wodehousitis may soon become a part of folklore, confined to the dustbins of history.

A singular characteristic of this affliction is that it passes from one generation to the next. It follows that if steps are taken to facilitate its inheritance, better results may ensue. Stocking all editions of all the works of P G Wodehouse on our book shelves could help. Ensuring that the technical gizmos lying around in our humble abodes carry some of the juiciest stories in the canon could help. Occasionally replaying some episodes of the movies featuring Bertie Wooster and Jeeves could make the younger ones in the family sit up and take notice. Gifting appropriate books to those in the family way could help.

At a recent meeting of the Master’s fans in New Delhi, India, the germ of another idea popped up – that of identifying potential soul mates with Plummy leanings for the young ones who are yet-to-be-affianced. It was felt that even if one of the parents carries the Wodehousean chromosome in his/her genes, the coming generations would be likely to lead happier and fuller lives. If the parent belonging to the tribe of the delicately nurtured caries it, the drive to make Wodehousitis sustainable might yield better results.

One way of initiating a search of this kind could be to come up with matrimonial advertisements which actively seek life partners suffering from the dreaded affliction of Wodehousitis.

Here is a draft which could be refined and sent across to various sites which offer matrimonial services.

“A well-bread professional, a male rabbit of about 27 winters, well endowed in physical and materialistic terms, is on the look out for a soul mate who is a gentle and mild dormouse with whom he could settle down peacefully and nibble lettuce.

The aspiring soul mate would be expected to be smart, intelligent and well read. Specifically, the party of the first part strongly believes that those familiar with the works of P G Wodehouse would make an ideal party of the other part.

What the party of the first part intends to bring to the proposed union is a modern notion of chivalry. Opening car doors and holding chairs is passe. Instead, the emphasis would be on sharing household responsibilities and in providing soulful companionship. All possible endeavours shall be made to ensure that the party of the other part never misses her afternoon cup of tea. 

Ability of the party of the other part to think of goofy schemes to ward off those who prey on the millions of the party of the first part would be preferred. So would be those who have strong entrepreneurial leanings, much along the lines of Joan Valentine and Sally.

Spending some quality time together while gazing moodily at the stars would be encouraged. But espousing theories about God’s daisy chains and fairies would be discouraged.

Skills which keep invading cousins, aunts and ex-fiancees away from the home and hearth would be greatly admired. So would be the ability of retaining cooks and maid servants in the face of stealthy moves by scheming aunts who refuse to be gentlemen.

Costs of adequate medical insurance shall always be a part of the household budget. This would cover any damage to limbs caused by the cup of mirth brimming over while reading together a work of the Master and one falling off from a sofa and rolling over on the floor, and any such eventualities.  

The party of the better part shall be encouraged to pursue her own professional career. It is expected that the pocket-money meant for the party of the worse part would get dished out without any hesitation or remorse. Nor would its usage be ever questioned or doubted, thereby supporting the sporting spirits of the party of the worse part.

It may kindly be noted that the party of the first part shudders at the prospect of swimming a mile and then playing five sets of tennis post lunch on weekends. Also, an improvement in one’s intellect is not on the agenda of the proposed union. It is hoped that the party of the better part would keep such sensibilities in mind and refrain from using softer tactics to get the party of the worse part to abide by her wishes.

Both parties would enjoy equal rights in terms of occasionally spending time with their own circle of friends at clubs and in other social circles. Valets and house maids who are members of clubs which insist on keeping records of juicy goings on in the lives of either of the parties shall not be hired.

Members of the tribe of the delicately nurtured who happen to be pure padded cell from the foundations up are discouraged to respond to this missive.

It is hoped that when either of the parties faces one of Life’s harsh slings and arrows and is twiddling her/his thumbs trying to cope with a challenge, the other one would rally around and act like a Jeeves, marshalling not only his/her keen intelligence but also a deep understanding of the psychology of the individual.

The intended purpose of the proposed union is not only to enjoy life long companionship, especially at an advanced age when the lining of the stomach poses unique challenges to the parties concerned. It is also about little feet pattering about the home – feet which support a head which is steeped in Plummy thoughts and a heart within which sloshes an abundant supply of the milk of human kindness.

The union would be expected to produce offspring who will inherit the combined Plumminess of both the parents. Offspring in the vicinity of whom human life would not be under any threat. Bright kids who might be goofy but shall not seriously endanger the peace of mind of the nurses, the governesses, the private-school masters and the public-school masters who will eventually take on the responsibility of looking after a blend of the parties of the better and the worse part.

This alone will ensure that flowers shall always be in bloom, birds shall always chirp merrily, peace shall prevail, the sun shall shine merrily and God shall continue to be in heaven.”

What do you think?

(Related Post: https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2017/11/23/a-plummy-encounter-in-new-delhi-india)

ashokbhatia

What is the best Christmas present a CEO can give to her organization?

In keeping with the Yuletide spirit, the best gift could perhaps be a resolve to take decisions based not only on commercial considerations but also on sound ethics and values. Decisions which would serve the strategic interests of the organization and would never lead it to a situation of public disgrace and compromise.

An upgraded Blake Mouton Grid

If one were to take the liberty of modifying the Blake Mouton grid, the leadership style of such a CEO would qualify for either a 9,9,9 or a 5,5,5 classification.X Y Z upgraded

Here is a quick rundown on the various leadership styles which emerge from a grid of this nature:

1,1,1: Charmless Charlies

One can only wish their organizations the best of luck.

9,1,1: Road Rollers

They would achieve a target by ruthlessly crushing anything that comes in their way.

1,9,1:…

View original post 533 more words

There are talented actors in Bollywood who never make it to the top league. But the impression they leave behind even as a supporting actor lasts long.

In this blog, the erudite author pays a fitting tribute to one such actor: Nazima.

My Views On Bollywood

By

Sharada Iyer

Cine-lovers who are familiar with the cinema of the late-sixties and early-seventies would easily recollect her sweet and innocent face with those lovely big expressive eyes and the charming smile which characterized this talented actress. She had gained popularity as the quintessential ‘sister’ of the hero or the heroine and had a pleasing screen presence.

n9I have seen quite a few movies of Nazima and used to find her demeanour very appealing. But around the mid-seventies she just disappeared from the scene. I had somehow always thought she had got married and settled somewhere in a foreign country and never came back to the glitz and glamour of the film industry.

It is only recently while browsing some YouTube videos, I came across this shocking piece of news that Nazima had succumbed to cancer and passed away in 1975 itself at the young age of twenty-seven!!!

This…

View original post 1,462 more words

Travel is highly educational, said Jeeves. That is how it turned out to be when plans to visit New Delhi, some 2,200 kilometres away from where yours truly normally pollutes the environs, fructified.

An innocuous post on the Fans of P G Wodehouse page on Facebook led to some fans of the Master in the National Capital Region (NCR) deciding to meet up on 11.11.2017.

Eggs, Beans and Scones

The infamous Delhi smog singularly failed to dampen the spirits and many ardent fans of Plum in NCR landed up at the gig so very graciously hosted by a young man in spats, a management professional who happens to be based in Canada but was visiting his family in India.

Lord Emsworth, the grandfather of the young man, presided over the boisterous proceedings. An eminent bureaucrat in his hey days, he happens to be a devoted Plum fan. He turned out to be quite far from being woolly headed, and ensured that all the guests who had descended on his castle felt absolutely comfortable and at home.

Lady Mildred Mant, the daughter of Lord Emsworth, proved to be a genial host. Her attention to detail and the standard of hospitality on display might have prompted Jeeves to undergo a refresher course under her in the art and science of entertaining guests.

The theme of the gig was ‘Eggs, Beans and Scones’, since Lord Emsworth and the family found that the local bakeries were clueless as to what Crumpets stood for.

A leaner version of Beach, the butler, kept shimmering in and out, providing nourishment to all and sundry.

The Proceedings

Stiffy Byng showed up, somewhat annoyed at not being able to detect any chance of launching one of her goofy schemes. In the absence of any policemen in the vicinity, and missing the Harold Pinker of her life, she decided to go in for a safer option – that of bringing a quiet and dignified charm to the gig.

Bertie Wooster popped up, with Cousin Wilmot in tow. He brought in a black forest cake, with a portrait of the Master adorning its top. The portrait ensured a restricted calorie intake for all present. Only a small strip at the bottom of the cake, comprising Plum’s signatures, was eventually consumed. The rest was gobbled up by potential fans in families elsewhere who made polite enquiries regarding the identity of the person before shoving in large helpings down the hatch.

Aunt Dahlia marched in and proved to be a charming companion. Having been a Governor of several educational outfits in the league of Market Snodsbury Grammar School, she displayed exemplary restraint and did not address any one of those present as blots on the landscape or as worms.

The huge parcel which she brought in was presumed by those present to be having copies of the latest editions of Milady’s Boudoir. Instead, it was found to contain several Bertie-Jeeves mugs, which caused much merriment. All were eagerly lapped up.

Joan Valentine, the coordinator of the group, trooped in precisely at 11.11 AM, so the meeting could get off to a flying start. A rendition of The Yeoman’s Wedding Song was promptly located and played out, declaring the proceedings open.

Gladys Biggs turned up, accompanied by an impostor who turned out to be Clarence Mulliner. Technology having advanced, he did not need to squeeze bulbs and shoot photographs. While others got busy with much back-slapping and what-ho-ing, he quietly went about creating a visual record of the boisterous proceedings.

Gladys unveiled a delectable collection of some exquisite hand-painted sketches themed around the works and characters of Plum. It transpired that the same had been done by her niece, Gwladys Pendlebury, who had burnt the midnight oil to dish out the entire collection. She had done so at Hyderabad at a very short notice, and had couriered the entire set to Delhi, where her aunt and family had lost no time in getting these framed. Understandably, there was much excitement generated. All those present lost no time to grab one each.

Mr Mulliner too dropped in and regaled all those present with some stories of Bollywood producers and directors. A frequent traveller between Delhi and Mumbai, he proved to be a repository of Wodehousean wisdom.

Ashe Marson materialized, wearing a Wodehousean golf cap, looking bronzed and fit. His demeanour and bearing demonstrated the power of Larsen exercises, coupled with brisk walks, cold baths and a strict diet regimen. An established author, he often gave the impression as if his grey cells were busy working out the next adventure of the famous detective Gridley Quayle.

(L to R: Young man, Lady Mildred Mant, Aunt Dahlia, Mr Mulliner, Lord Emsworth, a balding Bertie Wooster, Joan Valentine, Gladys Biggs, Stiffy Byng, Ashe Marson, Cousin Wilmot; Clarence Mulliner is lurking behind the camera)

Florence Craye walked in, essentially to check as to what the excitement was all about and how the meeting was proceeding. Luckily, she did not appear to have any intentions of raising the intellectual level of those present.

Honoria Glossop joined the NCR Plummies over Skype briefly from UK, adding to the sparkle. Despite these being early hours in the Queen’s country, that too on a Saturday, she took the initiative of chatting with all those present.

Spawning Wodehousitis

Other than Plum’s works and characters, Spinoza and other literary figures also came up for discussion. Some openly shuddered at the challenge of exposing the coming generations to the unique pleasures of Plumsville.

It was felt that many amongst us have inherited the germs of Wodehousitis from our previous generations. The group wondered if prompt efforts can be made through proper channels to identify suitable Plummy soul-mates for those who are not averse to taking a saunter down the aisle in the near future. Such an initiative would ensure a steady spread of Wodehousitis in the times to come.

At such meets, continents and countries disappear. So do races, castes, creeds, gender, professions and income inequalities. Only the affliction known as Wodehousitis retains its relevance.

Those who are turning green with envy need not fret. They would do well to brace up for the next gig, planned at the same venue, on Saturday, February 17, 2018.

(Note: The allusion to characters of P G Wodehouse here is purely arbitrary and subjective and is not intended to offend any of those who spared the time to join in and make this encounter a memory to cherish for a long time. Permission to use photographs is gratefully acknowledged.)

(Related Posts:

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2017/05/15/another-drones-club-meeting-at-asker-in-norway

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2017/05/03/a-drones-club-meeting-in-amsterdam)