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Pakistan Kills 2, India Kills 2…

I was going about with my morning routine; tea, breakfast and reading newspaper. Then I came across this picture which moved me to tears….

An innocent kid weeping incessantly over the mutiliated body of his father. The question isn’t here who did it. The question here is why? And for how long????!!! 
Pakistan kills 2, India kills 2. 
Children from both sides become orphans. Women from both sides become widows. Hostility grows. And for what? Only to satiate the egos of a few politicians? What personal enmity you and I have with Pakistan? Or what personal enmity does a kid or even an adult in Pakistan has with us? Nothing! 
But this killing is unstoppable. Blood is shed over and over again. We discuss this over and over again. But who listens? 
Hate has made us hopeless maniacs. We follow the herd and join the ‘I Hate Pakistan’ club. Without even knowing why it came into being. Without even knowing our follies. 
But how does that matter to this little kid now? He has lost his father forever. A father, for god’s sake! I can’t imagine in my dreams living without my father. I commit mistakes. I prance around proudly. Why? Because I know my father is there to protect me always. 
But this kid’s father was there to protect to us all. And he died. Mercilessly. 
We weep when an Indian soldier dies. But rejoice when a Pakistani soldiers dies. Why? Wasn’t he a father? Or a son? Didn’t he have any family that will mourn just like this little kid?  
How can we be so negligent towards the emotions of their families? Why can’t we all come together and stand firm on the face of the governments of both the countries that we don’t want violence. If you guys have a problem, then just stop talking. Why kill innocent people from both sides??? 
My heart pains… 
Love and respect,

H๐Ÿ’”

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My Journal: The Unconditional Love In My Life

What is unconditional love? Let me give you a perfect example. Perfect, because there can be no love as unconditional as this one.  

My mother gets up in the morning, and goes to the kitchen for two hours straight to prepare breakfast, lunch and snacks for me. 
My life has been pretty hectic these days. I stay at my workplace for a good 10 hours. And she makes sure that I’m doing fine. From cutting fruits for me to lunch and then my evening tea and snacks, she makes me wonder how she does it all. Instead of the fact that she, too, works as much as me (life of a banker). 

And to top it all, I was diagnosed with wheat allergy. But she hasn’t budged at all. Now she does double the work she was doing earlier. From making separate breakfast and lunch for me, she has given me a thousand reasons not to worry about my health condition. Ever since I’ve been diagnosed with this pathetic wheat allergy, she’s been hooked to YouTube to find about the dos and donts and the perfect diet.

 

Is there any love as unconditional as this? 
I don’t think so. 


XOXO,

H โค๏ธ 

Posted in blog, blogger, bloggers, blogging, blogging 101, blogs, brotherhood, childhood, criticism, diary, dreams, hate, hatred, humanity, independence, inspiration, Life, love, peace, personal, self-help, Uncategorized, violence, writing

My Journal- Day 2

Today I came home early so I paid a visit to my nanaji. He was ecstatic to see me. And what really touched my heart was when he literally requested me to spend at least one hour with him on weekends.

 

Here I was, thinking, that nobody really needs me or feels happy around me and here I have, one of the most important persons in my life, begging me to come see him more often.

 

Life is, well, simple. Sometimes.

 

My co-workers detest me, to say the least. Every day I spend a good amount of time anticipating the reason why I am the most hated person at my workplace. And then there are some who brighten my day up and vice versa.

 

One thing struck my mind today. While ‘dealing’ with our fellow humans, we totally forget that they are humans! That they have complicated lives like us. That they go back to their deep, dark secrets and feel guilty. That they’ve been used. That they’ve been lied to. That they’ve been mistreated. That they’ve things they can’t really tell anybody.

And yet, we somehow, very easily indeed, blurt out harsh and mean words. And forget about being guilty about it afterwards.

 

Imagine a world, with clean air. Clean air. With no hate. No lies. A world that is painted in soft hues of pink and blue. With a tinge of greens and whites. Pastels all around. Happy people. Smiling at strangers. Youth helping the old. Clean air. Clean atmosphere.

 

Well, the chances are really bleak. But fantasies never hurt. Humans never hurt if treated properly.

 

What have we all become?

 

XOXO,

H

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My Journal- Day 1

Life is what you make it. And we make it step by step, day by day.

 

Today was also a stepping stone towards something great. Yes, I’m a believer. I like to believe that something great is waiting for me. And if I don’t work for it today, I might miss on the opportunity.

 

My banker life is sort of an assignment. It is not what work I do. It is how I do it. And I choose to do it with integrity. Work is worship. That is going on in my mind right now. I’m serving the public. It is their money that we have deposited in our bank. And they have an absolute right to ask a hell lot questions. There shouldn’t be any chance for me to feel irritated. Instead, I should be more convincing.

 

And the battle to be convincing is eternal.

 

And then, there is team work. It is not what I expect it to be. Some of my co-workers inspire me, while some teach me valuable lessons.

 

But there is this voice that keeps telling me that I am an employee of the bank and I have the power to bring the CHANGE that I want!

 

Peace.

 

XOXO,

H

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The Mistake We All Make.

I’ve been apprehending the past couple of events and I can’t help but blame myself for everything that is wrong right now. I think it’s high time that you, too, should blame yourself for it.

 

‘The Mistake’ is our sympathy for the poor.

 

I want to put it straight. Stop showing sympathy for the poor. I may sound like a shrewd woman, but I’ve got my reasons.

 

Let’s go back to the days when we were young. Some of us didn’t have a scooter, or even a bicycle. But today, each one of us owns a car. Big or small doesn’t matter. The point is, we all have worked hard, our parents have worked hard to give the luxuries that we have right now.

 

In my case, my father is a self-made man. He came from a remote village in Punjab and went on to become a prestigious banker that he is. He has earned respect and wealth in equal proportions. His father, my grandfather, also started from a scratch. He joined the army and went on to raise four wonderful kids who made him proud in the entire village.

 

Same goes for my mother. She has also worked hard her whole life in a job that she despises, but still works to give us a better life. Her father, my maternal grandfather, was the first one to move out of the village and went on to become a reputed government official. People still talk about his courage, wit and humanitarian deeds to date.

 

My point of shedding a light in my personal life is to enlighten us all that if these people have broken the norms prevailing in their societies and come out of a poverty-like life, then why can’t every poor in India do that?

 

I know my parents and grandparents aren’t the only ones to have written a successful saga of rags to riches. I know that in each lower middle-class, upper-middle class and the rich family, there is embedded a story that will inspire us all.

 

I once read about a statement given by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan about giving something for free to the poor. He said,”One should not create a situation where people do not value it”. He was talking about the food subsidies in India.

 

A bitter incident took place in our family last month. My cousin sister was about to get married in a month. So, obviously, everybody was making arrangements for cash because there was a huge dearth of it due to demonetization. One of our maids who had worked in our home for like almost two years took away 24,000 rupees from the cupboard. We were unable to take any action because marriage was round the corner. After the wedding, my brother took her to the police and said to her that these are the same people who used to teach your kids, provide for their education and gave a lot of free stuff to you and this is what you did! Her simple reply was, “So what?!!”. I was astonished.

 

This is what proves the very point Kofi Annan made during his comments on the food subsidies. If we give everything that we, otherwise, pay for, for free to the poor, they just won’t value it. They will create a kind of feeling that they are entitled to get certain things for free. And hence, we kill the very urge for them to work hard to create a better future for themselves. We always make a hue and cry over the number of poor people that are present in this country.We always blame the government over not showing enough care for the poor. But, think for once, that if our parents or grandparents would’ve gotten the same facilities for free, would they have worked hard for it?

 

Feed the poor. Feed the hungry. That is the kind of help that they need. But anything beyond that, will turn disastrous.

 

I know there are people who really need our help. Like the orphans, or the differently-abled, or the aged. But showing sympathy to the poor and simply giving them money so that their present becomes better is just not okay! Let them work hard for it! This is the very reason that begging is a CRIME in India. Do not promote this kind of behavior.

 

Instead, create opportunities. Opportunities that can turn their lives around. Enlighten them. Create a fire in their hearts to really work for everything that they need.

 

This is the only way we can stop making ‘The Mistake’.

 

XOXO,

H

 

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Demonetization- The Story Of An Indian Banker

Disclaimer: BEWARE! Bhakts will find it offensive (A LOT!!)

 

Okay. I apologize for being so late in putting forth my views on this whole ‘demonetization saga’. But I had to get hold of all the niche details of this drama that is costing an array of problems to the aam aadmi (pun intended).

 

First of all, it started on 8th of November when I was happily scrolling through my Instagram feeds and it has taken a toll on me ever since. So, I’m gonna jot down some of the (many!) obvious loopholes in this so-called ‘bravest ever step taken’ by a ’56-inch chest guy’.

 

  1. The Black Money Loophole: Duh! Bundles of cash lying in peoples mattresses and tijoris is now a piece of sh*t. And, I’m not the one boasting of this achievement. The writers of the demonetization saga claim so. As an Indian banker, I’ve had first hand experience of most, if not all, black money holders using their servants and their wives and their kids to put their sh*t together. And I’m not even kidding, mitron. We, the bankers (slash puppets) are helpless. Also, I was very little when I heard of the phrase that goes like this- All that glitters is not GOLD. And on 8th of November, I got a solid proof. All that glitters is not GOLD, it is BLACK! Black money, white money, gold money. It’s all equal now.
  2. The Black Money Loophole-2: I mean since November the 8th I’ve heard so much of this black money ragas that I can’t just put forth the facts in one point now, do I? So, it is not a banker secret that people are hiring daily wage workers at near about 450-500 bucks per day to get their black money exchanged. Now, how many of these poor workers will the 56-inch chest get hold of? 0.1%? Okay, I’m underrating him. 0.2%. I can’t rise the stakes more than this, please.
  3. The V.V.I.P. Loophole: So, my brother is currently pursuing his grad and still got some 10,000 bucks of old notes. But, the Adanis and Ambanis and Tatas and Birlas own something the size of Lesotho (it’s a country, in case the Bhakts don’t know) and still I spot Rajus and Ramus and Sonus and Monus in the long queues. Hmm. Guess these corporate people only use Bitcoins or maybe they are the face of PayTM! Right.
  4. The Aam Aadmi Loophole: On 10th of November I entered my branch and a middle-aged man came running to me saying that his daughter is sick and he needs to get medicines for her. He even showed me the prescription in case you Bhakts cry a foul. It was early in the morning and we managed to help him. But after that we’ve heard a lot of sad tales and even the newspapers are filled with the stories of the poor and the not-so-poor that they are suffering the most in this money crisis. I read news of how elderly people die standing in long queues. Once, I tried to help an octogenarian by depositing his money from the backside and the customers started shouting. It took me a while to explain them that it isn’t my money and that the elderly man had some kind of knee problem. Only after looking at him they cooled down. But what kind of a ruthless PM sends his 90 year old mother to stand in a queue? I’m amazed that people chant his name and nobody came forward to even stand in the queue for his mother. Thank god for photo-ops ๐Ÿ˜‰
  5. The 2,000 Note Loophole: I mean what a breakthrough, man! What a breakthrough! Printing a 2,000 bucks note for a nation that majorly constitutes of lower middle class people. That deserves a slow clap. Okay, so next time when I go to buy cheeni and daal and some chai-patti, I should give a 2,000 rupee note for some 200-250 rupees bill. Okay. And I should enlighten you all that people are reluctant to take 2,000 rupee note but they have to because of point number 6.
  6. The Management Loophole: So, yeah. Point number 6. The currency-crunch. From the stroke of midnight, all 500 and 1000 rupee notes will become blah blah blah. And we’ll have new currency. But where the hell is new currency? Every single day we are telling customers that we don’t have cash. Yes, banks, where you get your money deposited and where you should get your withdrawals, are out of cash. Common sight, is it?
  7. The Banker Loophole: They wanna kill us. Literally. I don’t know what it was but on 10th of November itself I came home with 102 degree fever. We have worked overtime. We work on the Sundays. We are still working overtime, even though the working hours are from 10-4. We are working late. But we are not getting anything, I mean of course with the exception of abusive hurls and in some cases manhandling by the customers.
  8. The Miracle Loophole: I know this government came into being just because of its promises of miracles and it is keeping up with its promises in its own cute,childish ways, but it should learn how to take criticism from two of the most learned economists of our times- Dr Manmohan Singh Ji and Raghuram Rockstar Rajan. Raghuram Rajan objected to demonetization even before it was being looked into as a possibility. He clearly told the loopholes that I explained to you in detail. And I’m amazed how each one of his apprehensions or rather arguments are coming true one after the other. And what can I say about Dr Manmohan Singh Ji. In his very own humble way, he showed the lost government the path to make good the damage it has already done, to the country, to the banking system and most importantly to the common man whose sufferings don’t seem to end.

Well, people are hailing the decision of their PM. But only those who own smartphones and who voice their opinion on social media through memes and tweets. But, I urge you all to reach out to those who really got effected by this money crunch. They don’t own smartphones to buy groceries online through their credit cards. All they want is simple life, and that my mitron, is a distant dream.

 

P.S.- You can go ahead and have a good debate of how I don’t love my country ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

XOXO,

H

 

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Chronicles Of My Nana- 2

A day after my birthday, on September 17, he took me and my brother to a stationery shop to buy me gifts. I was a nerd and hence bought a cool Harry Potter exam cardboard and a few gel pens. I was in the seventh grade back then.

 

A year later, he took me to another stationery shop to buy me pens. We spent some half an hour there and in the end I bought an 8 rupees pen. He laughed at me saying that 8 rupees weren’t enough for the amount of hard work the shopkeeper put in to show me all kinds of pens.

 

He has the most childlike laugh. My nana, the most beautiful person I’ve ever met. He has got a hearing problem, but that isn’t an obstacle to us having fun. He cracks the funniest of jokes and laughs loudly. Oh! How I miss seeing him laugh.

 

Now, all he does is, ask me whether he will ever be able to go on shopping with me. And he’s waiting most eagerly for our Diwali shopping ritual. We would go to Jawahar nagar camp and buy packs and packs of dry fruits, biscuit packing, diyas, candles and what not!! We would also go to Ghumar Mandi and scan the whole market for some good Diwali gifts. Today, he told  me that he’s gonna miss all those fun moments this time.

 

I remember the time I had to leave for Bangalore. During my last moments in Ludhiana, he was so anxious, sad and what not that he was moving swiftly, here and there, began making tea for all of us and spilled it all over the kitchen!! It was all haywire for him. It was like, two best friends are separating. The feeling was, well, devastating…

 

He has had two operations when I wasn’t with him. He’s been sick for almost three months now. Totally drained of his energy. But still, sometimes, when he smiles, it’s like everything is back to normal.

 

This Sunday, he was telling me the stories of Jawaharlal Nehru and Dr. Manmohan Singh. It feels good to listen to him when he talks with great enthusiasm. Though he has been sick for a really long time, he still knows about what Modi and his government is doing in Kashmir. He was comparing the policies of Nehru and Modi. I love having these short and meaningful discussions with him.

 

For almost two years, I would take him to the bank every month to withdraw his pension. He would walk into my room exactly at 9:30 a.m. and we would reach the bank by 9:45 a.m. irrespective of the fact that it opened at 10 a.m.

 

In 2015 when I was hospitalized, he would visit me everyday in the morning. He’s someone I love looking at. You know, how sometimes you’re at absolute peace, you feel tranquilized. That’s the exact feeling I get when I look at him. He emanates optimism, his face has a soothing effect. I have put my feelings into a lot of words, but I don’t think I can ever do justice to how he makes me feel.

 

I love sitting beside him. It takes away all the tiredness of the day. He’s my strength and my weakness. I have spent all my life with him. And I want to live my life the same way. He would come at 4 in the evening and I would make coffee for both of us. He would drink it and then say, “Coffee is more beneficial than tea.”. And he wouldn’t say it one time or two times. Each time we have had a cup of coffee, he would say the same sentence!!! And then we both would laugh.

 

People say they get bored at home. They’ve got nothing to do. Well, I feel the most entertained at home because of my crazy little family. My grandparents (nana-nani) are the world’s best entertainers. Each day I would go to their place and we three would chat for hours.

 

My life is complete. Because I have the love which people yearn for. I have my nana. I have my nani.

 

P.S.- Click here to read some more amazing stories about my nana ๐Ÿ™‚

 

XOXO,

H โค๏ธ

Posted in blog, blogger, bloggers, blogging, blogging 101, blogs, childhood, dreams, hate, hatred, inspiration, leibster award, Life, peace, personal, poetry, self-help, story, writing

A Jaded Bird

Dusted feathers,

But a burning heart.

Life is yearning,

For a restart. 


They Dictate,

And I hear.

Oh! How I wish,

To burst in tears.


It ain’t a debacle,

That’s for sure.

Then why do I feel,

My spirit’s tore


Had my eureka moment,

Embraced it warmly.  

Sitting in a cubicle,

Waiting calmly. 


Doing my bit, 

But the door is nowhere. 

That will fulfill,

My longstanding prayer. 


One day, 

I will brush my feathers. 

Reach for heavens,

And live in a mellow weather. 


Xoxo, 

H โค 

The Distant Freedom

I met a boy,

Distressed beyond words,

Crying relentlessly,

His appearance was shabby.

It was my curiosity,

That led me to him.

“Why are you crying?

O! Little child?”

At first he was a bit startled.

Looked at me straight in the eyes.

Then a weak voice came out,

“Nothing… It’s nothing.”

Now that I observed him,

Closely.

I couldn’t let him cry,

No.

So, I gained a bit of courage,

To ask this weeping, innocent child,

The cause of his distress.

This time,ย 

He was less wary of me.

Somehow, we both connected.

A feeble voice struggled to say,

“Baba is beating maa..”

And there I was,

Standing,

My hand on his shoulders,

I was speechless.

I was grappling with words.

What do I say?

How do I console?

How do I tell this little soul,

What his father is doing,

Is awry, beyond words..?

This guy lives a mile away,

From my neighborhood.

Fell in love,

With a damsel,

A heart that loved all.

People all around,

Frowned.

Love before marriage?

O! They were all embarrassed!!

Alas! Their love story,

Was short-lived.

Just like many,

We witness daily.

My friend had a dream,

To paint this world red,

The color of love.

She held her brush,

Dipped it in crimson pigment.

As soon as she took the brush out,

Her father held her hand,

Threw the brush away,

And placed a book there, instead.

She now lives a life,

In strife.

Disputes, her existence.

What was so wrong with the brush,

Anyways?

There’s a girl I see,

On the traffic signal, everyday.

Greets me with a huge smile,

And extends me a flower each time.

Wears a torn frock,

Always barefoot,

Hair gone blonde in the sun,

Skin, dry and broken…

I buy a rose from her,

For ten bucks,

Thinking,

I have bought a piece of bread for her.

And then we part ways,

Only to meet the next day.

I see, and I remain quiet.

I choose.

I choose to remain quiet.

Because I have the FREEDOM.

Yes. The FREEDOM.

Domestic violence.

Well, I should remain in silence.

Two hearts,

Forced to be apart.

Sounds too amusing,

For a gossip to kickstart!

Dreams of youth,

Kept under wraps.

This word ‘freedom’ that they taught us,

Well, it was just a trap!

Children asking for money,

On the streets.

O! Poor thing.

I may as well give.

But taxes?

Eh! How can I give it a miss?

Freedom has come down to,

Being a relative word.

For some,

It is a right.

To some,

It doesn’t come,

Even after a fair fight.

Only those celebrate it,

Who overlook its true meaning.

For the real thing is,

Freedom has never been ours…

 

P.S.- Be it Bhagat Singh, Chandrashekhar Azad or Jawaharlal Nehru; we Indians have always loved our country. Since past 70 years, we are celebrating what has gone by and keeping our eyes shut to what is happening. Winning our country back from the Britishers was not freedom. Doing anything that doesn’t harm anybody is freedom. And I’m sorry to say, that freedom has not arrived yet. So, why not work towards it? Why not work to make our beloved country an ideal country? Let’s leave all the apprehensions behind. Let’s unite in uniting this country towards the cause of love; love that has shaken the very being of the strongest of hatred prevailing in this world. For, we live only once and let’s unite to make this one life worth living ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Happy independence day, my fellow Indians ๐Ÿ™‚

 

XOXO,

H

Posted in anniversary, bank, banking, blog, blogger, bloggers, blogging, blogging 101, blogs, dreams, india, indians, inspiration, Life, national, Uncategorized, writing

The Future Of Bank Of Baroda

Today marks the 109th anniversary of Bank of Baroda. A lot has changed since then. Ledger books, a pile of registers, calculation wizards etc. have become obsolete. Today, we rely on just one thing, i.e. Finacle, our software that lets us do anything we are authorized to do. Life in banking is easy, just like a cakewalk.

 

We have revolutionized the way people use their banking services. We have ATM services, cash deposit machines, passbook printing machines, mobile banking, internet banking, electronic cheques etc. to point out a few. We are foraying into an era that is anything but free (time wise). People want everything in split-seconds. They’ve got Siri to guide them into anything they aspire to do. From buying a hamburger to booking a flight, Siri has got us all covered. Facebook is keeping the world connected with just one click. Twitter is letting us speak on the issues that matter to us. Instagram is letting us share our memories. Snapchat is helping us to be either a dog or a Hawaiian princess. So, what is our Bank of Baroda doing to keep up with the pace the world is moving at?

Well, for starters, it introduced a pocket-free wallet app called Baroda M-Clipย on its 109th anniversary, which lets you transfer money, make bill payments, recharge, make mVisa payments, shop, gift, link debit/credit card, see transaction history and what not! Bank of Baroda sure knows how to woo the customers of the 21st century. But is it enough? Is it really using technology judiciously?

 

If you ask me, I got one straight answer- NADA! BOB is India’s first international and the biggest Public-sector bank in India. But it is not doing just enough. A century old bank with base all over the world must have a potential to see the changing trends around the world. Bitcoin has been here for quite some while now. PayTM is giving a tough competition to the biggest banks. Even Snapchat is not shying away from giving financial services, since it introduced SnapCash. So, banks have no choice but to feel threatened. There are people who are about to take over the arena of traditional banking. Now, when I ask you whether BOB is doing enough for its 21st century customers, what will be your answer? Nada, obviously.

 

So, what can we Barodians really do? For starters, use our strength. Our strength lies in the large base that we’ve created all around the world. We have entered the remote parts of our country and yet managed to somehow touch the skies with branches in London and New York. We KNOW the people of this world. Yes, not just this country, but this world. We have got our branches even in California, the state which houses the Silicon Valley, the technology haven of the world. Silicon Valley creates what you can’t even dream of. Do we really lag in the resources to innovate? I don’t think so. Even if we don’t wanna outsource this part, we can sure learn a few tricks and tips from the Silicon Valley. Why go abroad for this, I say. Bank of Baroda has the capability of developing what the mighty Americans are doing, in Bengaluru, the Silicon Valley of India. With Indian engineers a huge hit in the Silicon Valley, recruit them here in BOB so that we can create a state of the art technology base that he world envies. Sounds dreamy, right? Hard to achieve? Nada! Anything can happen in this world, my friend. Anything. You just got to have that spark to do it.

 

I can safely say that banks will themselves become obsolete in the future, if not near future. Who got to the time to go to an actual bank and get a loan sanctioned? Maybe it will take another Mark Zuckerburg or a Steve Jobs to pave the way for the dreamers to create something revolutionary that will give banking services at customers’ fingertips. No physical branches. Just a database, that stores your money. A virtual bank to say the least. And we all know that the one who averted change, was the one that got eliminated from the competition first.

 

Here, we are talking about the future of Bank of Baroda in another 100 years. So, get your mind cleared of all the apprehensions; the RBI policies, the government rules, the borders etc. They will not matter. The world today is not walking the marathon. It is ‘sprinting’ it.

 

Drones seemed like a stupid idea to many. 3D printers were like a flying pony. But look, where have we arrived! A world that literally is a living example to the popular phrase- Nothing is impossible.

 

So, yes. my friends, ย nothing is impossible. This world has a place only for the thinkers, the dreamers and the achievers.

 

Wishing Bank of Baroda a happy 109th birthday. Rise like a sun and enlighten the whole world ๐Ÿ™‚

 

A proud Barodian,

 

XOXO,

H