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Friday, January 15, 2016

Travelling to Gorchumuk and watching birds, deers

Travelling in winter is a favourite choice for Bengalies. I am not an exception. I love to travel during winter holidays. This year, I went to Gorchumuk, a travel destination in Howrah district and not so much distant from Kolkata. The journey was not smooth. First, I faced nearly 30 minutes jam near College Street because of the irritating traffic jams in Kolkata.

Anyway, finally I reached Howrah Junction and met my friend (my language tutor). From there we caught a local train to go to Uluberia station. There I got an auto-van to go to 58 No. Gate (consisting of 58 gates) Dam and Gorchumuk Porjoton Kendra ( Gorchumuk Travel Centre ).  The road condition was pathetic and I thought I was riding a horse! That journey on road lasted for one hour. And you can imagine my condition.

Anyway, we finally reached Gorchumuk. We entered through Gorchumuk park and first reached near the Deer Zone. The main gate to enter dear zone was locked. But that did not stop the existing crowd to make enough noise to disturb animals. The deers were staying as much away from the visitors’ spot. I and my friend took few photos of deers. There were few kids who wanted to see the deers more closely but they could not. So, I just showed my taken images from camera. The kids smiled and I became happy.

Standing near the deer park, we watched lots of birds in that region. But they were all trying to hide because of the many uncivilized visitors in the park. Lots of scoundrels from rural regions came to do picnic. They were uttering slang words every now and then, their body language was not right and some of picnic groups were playing high pitched sounds of rubbish songs that made the birds scared. So, I and my friends went near the bushes and away from the crowd to watch the birds and take photographs. Here I share some of those photos clicked from my camera.

Next, we moved towards the 58 No. Gate and watched the dam on the river Damodar. My friend told me that there was a meeting spot of river Ganges and Damodar just 1 km away from where we were standing. Anyway, we skipped that journey as it was getting dark and we had to return. I tried to take few snapshots of the river and I found that lots of eating plates there in the river side.

This is the way how uneducated humans (and even educated ones!) destroy the beautiful, natural places. They scare wild animals and birds. They make the parks  and river sides dirty. Homo Sapiens is the most selfish species on this planet. To create our new homes we cut trees of our mother nature. We take the freedom & peace of other animals. We think about our enjoyment at picnic spot but not about the destruction of our environment.

Anyway, we got another ‘happy-jerking’ auto-van that took us back to the station. After 2-3 hours, I was back at home. 

Difficulty of getting job from Kolkata to other Indian cities

Friday, January 1, 2016

4 Bengali Love Poems or Bangla Premer Kobita by Biswajit Ganguly

I borrowed white cloud’s notepad to write some Bengali love poems (bangla premer kobita) with my pen of rainbow. However, you have to read them in plain image forms. The love poems are for my existing and new blog readers. Hope you will like these Bengali love poems or Bhalobashar / Premer kobita. Please feel free to comment about these Bengali poems. 

Monday, December 28, 2015

Watching Star Wars: The Force Awakens and spending Christmas

25th December, 2015 is a big festive day and everybody loves to spend this day in a grand way. For me, there was no travelling plan outside of the city. So, I planned enjoying my time in Kolkata only. Star Wars movie was released in Kolkata’s cinema halls and I thought about watching it at PVR multiplex, Jessore Road (minimum ticket price Rs. 225/- including everything). If I forget about Jaya multiplex for a second, PVR was the first one where I had the experience of watching a movie at a multiplex.

About Star Wars: The Force Awakens
The showtime was at 12.15 pm. I had a plan of taking few snapshots of the movie Star Wars: The Force Awakens , so I took my camera. When I reached there, they said that no camera was allowed inside the hall for some unknown security reasons and they asked me to submit the battery of my camera. Hence, I was left to enter inside the hall with a non-functioning camera.

For the first time, I was allowed to wear a 3D spectacle. But, as I have a high minus power, the 3D spectacle was useless for me as everything looked hazy after wearing it. I watched the whole movie with the spectacle I wear for all the time. The movie transcript of dialogues seemed hazy anyway.
The movie should be remembered not only for the Good vs. Evil universal battle, but also for the appearance of Han Solo (Harrison Ford) in the Star Wars series. Watching Harrison Ford on silver screen is a beauty that movie fans should agree with me.

In the movie, the way Dark side destroyed the planets of the Resistance government, was absolutely shocking! Destroying 3-4 planets! You are kidding me. That was equivalent to 20 world wars on Earth.

There were some funny dialogues in the movie. There were moments of love & relationship shown in the movie between Han Solo and The Queen. It was really unfortunate that Han Solo was mercilessly killed by his own son (as because he was the main representative of the dark side). I could not withstand the murder of Harrison Ford on screen. He has been one of my favourite heroes since my childhood (remember Indiana Jones!).

From this Star Wars movie, the audience won’t be able to see lots of special effects. The robots in this movie have no change in comparison to the previous Star Wars movies but they look ridiculous at a time when sci-fi movie series like Transformers are making news at the box office. I think the appearances of Star Wars characters have to change with time. Despite these negative things, the movie seemed to be successful because of people’s love for sword fighting (meaning fighting with lightsabers!), nice storyline, amazing landscapes of different planets, aliens, larger-than-life-characters (e.g. Han Solo) and Jedi Knights.

I think in next Star Wars movies, we are going to witness some major changes in terms of new characters, looks or appearances and technology.

So, that was all about my thoughts about watching Star Wars. Below is the inside picture of PVR multiplex. However, after coming out of the movie hall my first thought had nothing to do about Star Wars. All I was thinking at that time was to go to the multiplex front desk and collect the battery for my camera.

After coming out of the multiplex, I went straight to a KFC ( Kentucky Fried Chicken ) outlet, because I was feeling hungry and I ate chicken popcorn (price Rs. 71/- including value added tax). All I can tell you is the food had a heavenly taste. Yes, the finger licking was good!

Spending 25th December Evening at Park Street
Watching Star Wars was how I spent till the afternoon on the day of Christmas. In the evening, I went to our traditional place for Christmas celebrations, Park Street in Kolkata. I think, there were thousands and thousands of people (mainly youths) who were expressing their joys with “hooooooo” and similar sounds. 

I went inside the crowded cake shop Flurys Swiss Confectionary Pvt. Ltd. and ordered a Black Forest Cake (price Rs. 88/- including value added tax). The taste was amazing. I expected to see one live music concert at Park Street but one police constable told me that the function happened on 24th December. That was frustrating.

While returning, the metro was overcrowded at Park Street. So, I had to walk a few miles to catch the returning train from Rabindra Sadan. That was how I ended my day on Christmas 2015.

Let me wish a very happy new year 2016 to you and my other blog readers. 

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Thank you the Readers of the book B3456

B-3456 was my first published paperback book. It was published during end of January 2015 ( during Kolkata book fair). After the book was published, the publisher took no responsibility about selling it further and since then, the book’s only marketing person has been myself. 

I had to go to college street, had to approach my friends and had conversed with few book selling stalls in the Park Street area( Kolkata ). Apparently, I felt very disappointed because all my friends, whom I expected to buy my book, just showed some lame excuses for not buying it. My book’s MRP is Rs. 88/- and I sold it at a discounted price of Rs. 50/- only. Still very few were interested about reading my science fiction. In west Bengal, few people write science fiction and I became one among them with my first book. I also submitted my book for review at Saptahik Bartaman, Ei Samay, Tathyakendra, Dainik Statesman, etc. I have not followed up with Saptahik Bartaman magazine, Dainik Statesman and Ei Samay newspapers, but I am sure that Tathyakendra magazine has not reviewed my book yet as I follow its every edition. May be, my book content did not meet their reviewed books’ standards and I did not mention their names to blame them at all. You see, they have complete right to reject my book ( or, just any book) for review. Anyway, I was feeling completely helpless and frustrated. Still through my references, I managed to sell few books of mine to people I know.

So far, following people have purchased my book:
Mitraa Ghosh (Chatterjee) – authoress of the book ‘Maple Mita’; Raj Kumar Ghosh – editor of the little magazine (Amader Lekha); Ms Minati Pathak - a relative; Amitava Dasgupta – whom I met at Nainital and is a very good human being by heart; Rohan Mukherjee – ex colleague; Salim Mandal (Editor of Tobuo Proyas little magazine); Soumi Roy – ex-colleague; Munmun Ghosh Das – ex-colleague; Dwaipayan Banerjee & Sreyoshi Banerjee  – ex colleague & his wife; Abhinaba Banerjee – employee of Intechnosys; Doctor Kallol  Banerjee; Saradindu Banerjee – editor of Iye Patrika; Swapan Roy – my ex-tutor at Vidyasagar College Computer Centre; Dalia Bose – my ex-tutor at Vidyasagar College Computer Centre

I owe to these people who have bought my book and helped a young budding author to shine. Some of the names I am not mentioning here for they were unknown buyers. They just bought the book without giving me their details. 

I have gifted my book to Anish Deb (eminent author of several science fiction books);  Chandril Bhattacharya ( eminent author and I consider him my guru; Arpan Ghosh ( my ex-colleague at NRL); Arnab Roy – RJ at Oye 104.8 FM – Kolkata; Pavel Chakraborty – Vidyasagar Evening college friend.
Anybody interested to buy the book can visit the link and send me personal Facebook message in Kolkata:

Professor Anish Deb has given the following personal feedback through email:

 Dear Mr Ganguly,
                   Don't be surprised by my laaaaate response. I truly apologize for the delay. I have looked into ur book B-3456 and spent some time on it. I have a few comments to make. Hope u would not mind if my comments are not all praises. The comments are :

1  Writing style should be more linear so that it can communicate with most of the readers. To me, the style seemed a bit complicated.

2   The novel introduces too many technological advances in social life. These may have been limited to less items so that the author could dig deep, indicating their implications in life.

3   Jargons could have been less to make the novel easy reading.

Any way, ur effort is noteworthy, but reading about a dozen SF novels and short stories always helps in the grooming of a writer. At least, it helped me. If u wish u may try it too.
Thanks for introducing me to ur SF novel. Carry on writing. With regards,

urs truly,

Anish Deb, Professor
B.Sc.(Physics Hons.), B. Tech. (University Silver Medal),
M. Tech. (University Gold Medal, Prof. P. N. Ghosh Gold Medal),
Ph. D. (Tech.)

Electrical Engineering Section
Department of Applied Physics
University of Calcutta

Apart from that I expected at least 15-20 people to buy my book but they did not. They can spend Rs. 50 for buying chicken chowmin, can spend Rs. 50 for a bus or metro fair but can’t use the same amount for buying a Bengali science fiction book. Bengali people are that much cultured!!

Friday, June 12, 2015

Why did I choose an ordinary keypad phone over a smartphone?

In the busy metro city life, you will notice that there are lots of smartphone users. Their lives revolve around smartphones. They message, chat, read & send office docs, play games, do social activities like sharing photos & videos through smartphones. Two years before, I also bought an Android based smartphone.
The reason why I bought an Android phone instead of a Microsoft office phone or iPhone was that most of the Android apps were free at that time ( I mean, they are still free). So, I bought a Samsung Galaxy Young Duos S6312. First it was immense joy to download and use new free apps. But anyway, it was not that great experience in the long term for the following reasons:

1) More apps I downloaded, they got loaded in the phone memory and that took a lot of internal space. Gradually the phone performance became slow. So, I had to uninstall few apps.
2) While in the 2G speed, pages like Facebook groups and Facebook Pages did not open. And while in 3G speed, the phone got heated up after half an hour.
3) A few days after installing the Facebook android app, the chat option was not available any more. The makers of the app told me that I have to download a parallel app called Facebook Messenger to use Facebook chat. That was ridiculous. FB app was already running out of phone’s internal memory. Anyway, I installed the second app on Facebook.
4) Another issue happened with app. Updating apps is a monotonous activity in smartphone. From time-to-time you have to update them. When I take a 2G/3G data pack, I do that for net browsing. But these new version download of apps ate up my internet pack data limit soon. That was really aweful. I think, as an user, I should have the right for not uploading an app. I tried that and some of the apps showed me, “The application won’t run until you update it”.
5) A new menace was created due to smartphone. Every time I did a new talk time recharge, a Rs. 5 /- international SMS charge will be deducted from my balance. I complained to my mobile subscriber and even uninstalled some of my favourite Android apps out of suspicion, that did not solve the problem. The problem still exist.

So, because of these reasons, I gave a thought about moving backward and last month, I purchased Samsung C3322i keypad phone. It is an old fashioned phone that people of my generation would be least interested to use. But I am happy with it. Because it is hassle free. The basic calling function, sending SMS and listening to FM music (which I love) is there. The only problem is that I can’t read any PDF or DOC in that. Apart from that, it does a good job. The battery life is also no worry. I like it. 

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Forward Together We Go

What factors will shape U.S-India ties in the next five years?

When two biggest democracies from two different continents want to have friendly ties, there will be many hurdles of political, socio-cultural, economic and nationalistic barriers to be crossed. But thankfully, in our case, the two democracies are India and U.S. Hence the hurdles can be overcome if the people of two countries are eager to have a deep emotional & cultural bonding in next five years. Also, U.S. and India should have equal respect in each other’s capabilities. In this post, I try to give some indications about that:

Cinematic bonding: Me and my urban friends are fond of Hollywood movies. But how much do Americans know about Mumbai film industry? A film is a great way to interpret a country’s culture. So, best Bollywood films should be dubbed into English. They should be shown regularly in the popular movie theaters in USA. Special invitations should be sent to the Hollywood’s top directors and actors for awareness. American youths should connect with Indian movies. Recently, the film p.k. made its entry into America’s top 10. So, the scope for cinematic bonding is always there.

Sports: Basketball, baseball and American football are very popular among Americans. And cricket has become the new religion in India. Our challenges lie in popularizing American sports in India and encourage Americans to play cricket. Then we shall have joint sports activities every year. That way, the sports enthusiasts can share their feelings by going beyond boundaries. What about a Wrestlemania or a World Wrestling event being organized in Kolkata? I am looking forward to buy a ticket for it!

Student exchange:  Top US varsities should have student exchange programs with their Indian counterparts. Indian students should enjoy American life and vice versa. There should be one country specific volunteer chosen for each university, who will be primarily responsible for improving bilateral relationship.

‘Be My Guest’ approach: The travel & tourism model can be revived between two countries. Instead of staying into a five star hotel, an American family can be invited to take the hospitality of an Indian family. If I visit America, I may look for an American family with whom I can befriend with. Hearts should be shared, not just the natural beauty.

Literature: I am sure that every year, new set of Indian fiction & non-fiction writers (writing in English) are coming up and most are unknown to American readers & media. We need to have a joint prize in literature where one writer from U.S. and one from India will be honored for their first book or, for their overall contribution to the literature. Governments should be made liable to popularize the contesting Indian & American authors in both countries. Also, NYT, WSJ should broadly cover book fairs like Jaipur Lit Fest and Kolkata International Book Fair.

Others: Governments should continue talking about health, tech innovation and business cooperation. For sensitive defense issues, U.S. and India should have a joint team of army.
The above factors or initiatives should be taken as the joint responsibility for both countries’ leadership. In Abraham Lincoln’s words, “You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.”
 Let Americans & Indians help each other to live better.


Note: The image used in this post is not used from a stock photo and is designed by the blogger Biswajit Ganguly. Only Mahatma Gandhi’s quote is taken from a third party site. 

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Bengali poem on Holi or Basantautsab

Here is a Bengali Poem (Bangla Kobita) on the occasion of Holi or Basantautsav. Hope every Bengali would read and enjoy this poem on Holi. The poem is written by me, Biswajit Gangopadhyay / Biswajit Ganguly.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

PK movie review : A fantastic performance by Aamir Khan and Anuska Sharma

Thumbs down to the director of PK movie for releasing this movie ‘pk’ in 2014. I mean, don’t you understand that this movie is ahead of its times? Many religious people have not grown up to enjoy a movie as a ‘movie’ and they can’t withstand someone questioning their culture (that’s also from an alien!).
The movie tries hard to view our cultural belief from a scientific & philosophical viewpoint. Aamir Khan is at his usual best. Anuska Sharma has done a mind blowing performance. Sushant Singh Rajput did justice to his character. And a special last scene appearance by Ranvir Kapoor gives full marks to the star cast. But what about the plot? The film’s first half was good with partly comedy, partly questioning against religion. But the second half became monotonous.
My question to the story writer would be are all hindu priests bad and dishonest? Were  all ‘muni-rishis’ from ancient times fake in imagining God? Did they all take bribe from people? That can’t be true. Also, only hindu babas are frauds? Or the fraudulent practices exist in other religion’s religious gurus also? Also, I find it of a bad taste to utter a particular religion’s name (not hindu) in negative manner for several times. Also, I beg to differ about worshipping a Shiva Linga ( As in the film, it was shown a stone is put under a tree and people started worshipping it immediately perceiving it as Shiva Linga). It is said that God is there in every living and dead thing. I just take it in this way: God exists in every Good object. If people worship a black stone or a tree or a mountain as God, where is the harm in that? They are all part of a nature and everything that is beautiful & natural belongs to God.
I still liked the film because of its brilliant & funny ways of relating different cultures and religions. I also like it for Aamir Khan’s large-than-life role as an alien, ‘as God’s messenger’, as Jaggu’s lover and of course as ‘pk’. After watching the movie, the same question from a song’s line came in my mind, ‘hey bhagoyan, hai kaha re tu?’. If you are really there in every Good object, why can’t good things happen to good human being?  Why there are atrocities in this world?
Some more questions:
When Jaggu and Sarfraz just broke up due to misunderstanding why did not any of them try to contact the other one? We live in an era of mobile phones, Facebook, What’s App, Yahoo! and Gmail. Also, Jaggu and Sarpharosh could have known their temporary residence address. So, why?
Pk learnt the language of Bhojpuri. But he tried to propose to Jaggu by writing “I love you”. Where did he learn to write English? That is not clear to me.
Pk came from a planet that was advanced enough to make spaceship. But it was NOT advanced enough to make a tape-recorder’s battery?
But anyway, when you have gone to enjoy a movie, you may not be bothered about all these logic and all religious debates.
Love & the pk movie:
Aamir Khan ( or say, pk) is the ultimate guru who has taught us what a true love should be. Pk fell in love with Jaggu. Sarfraz was deeply in love with Jaggu. When pk found out about Jaggu’s past relationship, he did not try to suppress the truth. Because there is a greater joy of giving in love than snatching other’s love interest. And pk just did that. He spoke out about the truth. Because of his selfless attitude, Jaggu and Sarfraz finally met. In the end of the story, Sarfraz became the usual earthly lover who just got the girl. And pk became the UNIVERSAL lover who taught us the actual meaning of love. Yes, this is the  divine love. Aamir, thank you once again for an exceptionally brilliant role in movie pk.
The fact that I did not get tickets of Bomkesh Bakshi or Badshahi Aanti (Feluda) and then bought pk’s movie ticket, was not a wrong decision at all. I am, in pk’s term, I did not dial a ‘wrong number’ at all. Thank you God and pk, for helping me about the right choice.
May the religious harmony in India last long and the reel-life magic of Aamir Khan as well!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Stealing , Mahatma & Biswajit Ganguly

On 12th November, 2014, I was at Kaushani.  The purpose was pure travelling. I and my family were travelling under a conducted tour operated by a Kolkata based travel agency. We were staying at Hotel Sagar in Kaushani. During afternoon time, the tour manager told us that Gandhi Ashram was on a walking distance from where we were staying.
My mother and grandmother were too tired to visit the place. They took the choice for resting in the hotel. I, along with others, formed a small group. We slowly moved upward along the road to reach the Gandhi Ashram. It was a nice afternoon in the hilly region.
Our small group consisted of Mrs. Sahoo (the tour manager’s wife), two naughty-boy-type-men (named Pipul & Bubai) and a young lady (named Bonnya) along with her mother. Needless to say, I have changed their original names or surnames. I had my camera with me. On reaching the ashram, I was taking the images of flowers. Then Mrs. Sahoo remarked, “You see, Gandhi ji and other freedom fighters have made our country free from British rule. They were honest. But today’s leaders are pathetic! They are stealing our wealth and looting the country.” We all supported her speech.  We spent some quality time in the garden. It was the time of sunset and the Nanda devi peak was looking more beautiful than ever. I was also looking at the noble man’s statue.
While returning from the ashram, something mishap happened. Pipul pointed something at Bubai. They went towards a tree. It was an orange tree. I noticed that there was only one orange in that small tree. Pipul looked here and there. There was nobody watching them. Then Bubai picked that orange quickly from that tree and put that into his pocket. Pipul smiled at him and said, “Let’s move out from here.”
Another similar incident made me astonished! Mrs. Sahoo was asking like a baby girl that she wanted oranges from another big orange tree. In front me, Mrs. Sahoo and the  two other ladies persuaded one local man to pick 2-4 oranges for them. Perhaps, they bribed him. I was looking here and there and smiling all the time. One ashram’s person finally saw that the man was giving the oranges to the ladies and he called the local guy to scold him. He, however, did not call us for explanation.
Five minutes later, we were in front of our hotel, from where rest of the group members went downwards to explore the local market and I just came back to my hotel room. Somehow, my mood was off. Actually, when something bad happens in a group, first I get fun. But then a sense of repentance stings my heart and I feel very depressed. I went to the bed that night with a heavy heart.
Next morning (on 13th November), I woke up early. I told my mother & grandmother that I was going for a morning walk. First I went towards the local market. But I was not in peace. Something was dragging me towards the Gandhi ashram. So, slowly I started moving upwards and reached there in ten minutes from the local market. The morning was very peaceful. There were three men at a long distance from the Bapuji’s statue. They were not looking at me at all.

I took a deep breath. Then I began talking to the statue, “Bapuji, yesterday, something mishap happened at your garden. My fellow travelers stole oranges from ashram’s garden. No, I did not steal any. But I was present during their misdeed and I did not protest. Those who support the crime directly / indirectly, are also guilty. So, it’s my guilty feeling for which I have come here. Please forgive them. They are too immature to understand what it feels to steal something from a noble soul’s ashram. On behalf of all of them, I apologize. Please forgive us. Please forgive me.
Bapuji, I am not like you. I am more like Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. If someone attacks me, I don’t and I can’t use your Ahimsa philosophy. I also attack the guy. But that does not mean that I disrespect you. I am not fully honest. But then no human being is. But I shall try to be like you. Bless me with you power. Whatever barrier comes in my way, I cross all of them and show my supremacy to the society, to the nation through my technical field and literature. Bless me that when I am back in Kolkata, I am blessed with your green energy and no red devil can stop me in achieving my goal. I may not come back here for a third time. So, goodbye. I promise to you that I’ll be different from others. And I’ll be different because my name is Biswajit Ganguly.”
I ended my speech. My eyes were full of tears. It felt like a burden was relieved from my shoulder. I saw the still statue of Bapuji. Beside his statue, there were the statues of three monkeys with these messages : don’t see bad things, don’t hear bad things and don’t speak bad things. Incidentally, just opposite to those statues, four real life monkeys were sitting. They were staring at me. Their ears were naturally open. And two of them were talking between each other.
Actually, when something good happens , everybody loves to listen, watch and speak about it. And like human beings, monkeys can’t be any exception to that. I felt like what I did just then, was good.  Yes, that was goooood!
I felt like a new man and slowing moved towards the hotel. Later in that day, I met Mrs. Sahoo. I asked her calmly, “So, how was yesterday’s oranges?”
She replied, “Oh, don’t tell me! Those fruits were sour. We did not like them at all.”
On hearing that, a smile came on my face. And the smile was neither bitter nor “sour”. It was sweet. Really sweet. Was Bapuji’s soul smiling also? I believe so.
This 100% true story could have ended here. But it didn’t. Nearly one month has passed. Something happened on last Sunday (14th December, 2014). On a recent arrest of a minister, Ms. Bonnya has mentioned him as Chor (thief) and made a Facebook post on that. I looked at the post and thought about the irony of the matter. People are good in forgetting their own misdeed and raising fingers at others. Don’t you agree?

[ The above writing has nothing to do with politics. ]

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Chances for Argentina to win World Cup 2014

Blue / aquamarine Sky. And white clouds floating there.
Sometimes, when Argentina football team plays, I visualize the whole sky has come down on the ground. The sky reminds me about Argentina’s jersey.
Who am I? I am a Bengali and an Indian. Then why should love & support Argentina? Because Argentina loves and respects the art of football just like Bengali people do. Because Argentina and the whole of Latin America have economically middle class people who are very knowledgeable or skillful like, we Indians are. Because we love Maradona just like they do. Because we are also crazy about Lionel Messi as they are.
I know that India does not have proper infrastructure to play better football and make it to the final rounds of World Cup. So, during FIFA world cup, I look forward to the teams who have rich football culture. During world cup, city of Kolkata gets divided into several parts namely, Argentina, Brazil, Spain, Italy, Germany, etc. These countries will hardly know about our deep passion for their football culture. It may be an one-sided love from us. But after all, it is nothing but love.
So, I was talking about Argentina. Argentna’s win is my win. It is also a win of all the crazy Argentina supporters out there in Kolkata. There is just one game remaining for Argentina to win the world cup 2014. This one game is equivalent to 10 games for the Argentina team. Because the opponent team’s name is Germany. Playing with Germany has been a nightmare for Argentina. In the year of 1990, Maradona’s Argentina lost to Germany in the world cup final. In 2010, Germany crushed Argentina with a 4-0 victory. So, Argentina needs to seriously consider this Germany side which has defeated Brazil with a score line of 7-1 in the last game and Portugal with a 4-0 score! That is not a joke. That is shocking!
Argentina has been one man show in this world cup. That is Messi. Apart from that there are other names like, Sergio Agüero, Gonzalo Higuaín, Ángel di María, Marcos Rojo. But if we forget one goal each from di María and Higuaín, then they have only filled the quota system of 11 players. In the final, they will have to play extraordinary to nullify the attack of the German team. Germans are clever enough to block Messi to score a goal. So, while Messi will take their attention, Ezequiel Lavezzi, Gonzalo Higuaín and Ángel di María (if he is fit to play) have to score goals (yes, it is a must!) for their country. Argentine players have just one match to create history or get abolished from history.
The German side has great names in their team. Mesut Özil, Miroslav Klose, Thomas Müller, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Mario Götze are the players who can penetrate through the opponent defense at any point of time in the game. Argentine player Javier Mascherano will have great responsibility in handling the German attackers. The Argentine defense should remember that earlier 4-0 score and should play ultra-defensive football. They should believe that they are the better team and try to score goals from the counter-attack.
The Argentine side is having a goal-drought in this world cup. And it is raining goals for German side. If these trends get continued till the final, then Argentina will lose the game. But if Argentina gets good number of first-half goals in the match, then German side may choke. Argentina can take the revenge of the previous world cup loss and finish as the new world champion.
Argentina is saying that ‘el Dios’ is on their side. I also believe that God is on the side of Argentina. But to defeat a team like Germany, Messi and his fellow players should remember that God helps those who help themselves.
Best of luck for every player in Argentina national football team before playing the final of FIFA World Cup 2014. Even if they lose the game to Germany, Messi & Maradona will continue to be soccer heroes in my life.
One footnote: I have heard that Argentina will play in a Blue jersey in the final. But I prefer to see them in their Aquamarine-White jersey. I think that colour bears a good luck.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Durga Puja Navami update

Durga Puja Navami update from Bishnu Kumar Ganguram

Whenever I have tried to usual stuffs, unusual things have happened and the reverse is also true. This Durga puga, I thought that my pandal hopping will be very usual. But as you know, the unusual rainy clouds were all over our autumn sky. Anyway, on the day of Navami, I thought about going out without an umbrella. My reasoning was, since there was a downpour in the morning, it might not rain anymore. My intelligent hunch was hardly supported by the dull sky.
First at the bus stop, I had to board a bus. I was heading towards Dum Dum Park, where 4-5 pandals are crowd pullers. I stood at my usual bus stop with many others. Then one traffic guard came to us and said that bus won’t stop here. Either we need to move forward or backward to find the new bus stop. I was surprised. Our North 24 Pargana’s traffic changes the road map and traffic direction during pujas, that I was aware of. But they also shift the bus stops! That was something new for me.
I got the bus after walking a while. Meanwhile it was drizzling. You know, I don’t really dislike rain. In fact, I once thought to write a whole book of poetry on rain but unfortunately for me and fortunately for you, the plan got cancelled and the world of poetry was saved!  Anyway, I was talking about my pandal visit on Navami evening.
The first club I visited was Tarun Sangha. The people were finding a path to enter but they could see it. The path is generally separated from the main road by bamboos. One husband was instructing his wife to bow her head down and enter inside that bamboo surrounded procession. She did so, although not willfully. After we moved a little forward, the row of bamboo was cut at a place, such that people can normally enter there. Then the wife shouted on her husband, “You idiot, couldn’t you find this normal entrance?”
Dum Dum Park - Tarun Sangha’s idol & interior decoration was truly awesome. While entering from there I wanted to ask someone the Theme of this year’s puja. There was a pump room on the exit side. Three people were sitting over there. I asked them, “Can you please tell me the theme for this year’s puja? One of them smiled at me and showed me a poster on the wall. The caption in that poster was, “We don’t know anything. Please don’t ask any question.” [Believe me, it was written!]
I asked the other puja visitors in which direction I should move to visit the next puja pandal? I got the the usual direction from many helpful people and I understood that I am just lost when walking for a while I again came back to Tarun Sangha’s entrance gate. Fortunately, after that, another group of helpful people gave me the right direction and I headed towards the next puja pandal, Bharat Chakra. As I have told you, our autumn sky did not have hangover of  monsoon and the rain again started. Being very intelligent, I forgot my umbrella and I noticed that most of the visitors took it with them.  I took a shelter to get rid of the rain water but after waiting for nearly waiting for 10 minutes, I saw that our romantic rain was showing no sign to stop. So, quite impatiently, I started walking towards the Bharat Chakra club. Within the pandal there, I could not see the Idol first. No, there was enough light, only my spectacle was covered by rain waters. Inside the mandap / pandal , there was a huge crowd gathering, partly because of the heavy downpour outside and partly because, Kolkata’s visitors love to exit from the door of entrance only but as half drenched people were continuously entering from Entrance door, there was a jam. I found the Exit door and got out of there.
When I  reached the next club, Dum Dum Park Sarbajanin, I was feeling like I just came out of swimming pool. The Sarbajanin’s pandal was a mixture of Enthic Durga and Theme based modernism. The sculptures inside were finest art forms. I spent some time there. I was a bit surprised after seeing the Dhakis. instead of standing, they were sitting on the floor carpet and playing drums (not drums actually, Dhak is a completely different music instrument altogether). Obviously, it’s because of human tiredness of four successive days of playing drums.
When I got out of Dum Dum Park Sarbajonin pandal, rain stopped. I was the trend of rain. It was like playing a game with me and others. For five minutes it was raining heavily and then  for next five minutes, there was no rain and then again in the next five minutes, there was heavy rain. So, in this game of playing “musical chair” with rain, my strategy was to walk, then take shelter, then walk again & then again take shelter and so on. Now I was not alone as the contestant. A family which was also heading towards VIP road like me was using the same path of proceeding. When for the second time, I met the family within a shelter, the old lady from the family said, “Here we meet again”. I smiled and other family members of her family laughed. Then after the rain just came down a little, they moved forward and I did not as I expected the rain to completely stop. Then after 2-3 minutes, I also strted moving. After 2-3 minutes of walking, it again started raining. I took nearest shelter and saw that very family has already reached there. The old lady just repeated, “Here we meet again”. The rain was again showing the signs of stopping and this time, I moved first. When for the fourth time, the old lady repeated the same words by standing beneath a car shed, I could not bear it anymore and told rain silently, “I quit from your game. I will rather in rain than playing this musical chair and hearing the same dialogue from this old lady.”
Before reading my returning the bus stop, I saw another pandal, perhaps, the finest among all the pandals, I saw. It was the pandal of Dum Dum Park Jubak Brindro. The interior and exterior decoration was truly unbelievable. I saw that loads of prizes the club has won.  Finally, I reached near the VIP road bus stop of Dum Dum Park. I needed to cross the road. I saw that I was crossing the street with a crowd and plenty of motorbikes. Here, at Dum Dum Park & Baguihati region, motorbike and human being are close friends and may be that is why they cross streets with a so close distance. I wonder, why accidents can’t happen. May be because of goddess Durga’s blessings, who knows?
I finally reached Lake Town (my locality), after spending 45 minutes in a bus for crossing one and half kilometers for a massive traffic jam. And of, I forgot say, none of the bus tops of Lake Town & Dum Dum park got shifted like Manasa Mandir bus stop, so I got in at the right place. Fortunately rain had stopped by that time. But it did not matter for me by that time, or did it?

Friday, October 11, 2013