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, 

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 🙂

 

Happy independence day, my fellow Indians 🙂

 

XOXO,

H

Posted in 9/11, blog, blogger, bloggers, blogging, blogging 101, blogs, border, borders, brotherhood, communal, criticism, dreams, gandhi, hate, hatred, humanity, india, indians, jinnah, Life, love, national, nehru, Pakistan, pakistani, Partition, peace, religion, social, terrorism, Uncategorized, violence, war, writing

Pakistan’s Obsession With Kashmir

#IAMBurhanWani #IndiaCantSee #LetKashmirDecide

 

“141 die in a brutal Peshawar massacre”

“Women students killed in a bombing in Quetta”

“Amjab Sabri shot dead in Karachi”

“Twin suicide bombings hit Peshawar church; 127 dead”

 

And many more headlines like these.

 

I am not a Pakistan hater. I sympathize each time some untoward incident happens and takes away the lives of innocent people (not Pakistanis, nor Muslims), but people, human beings to be precise.

 

And we are all aware how convoluted Pakistan politics is. Youth icon Imran Khan celebrates the failed coup attempt in Turkey and ‘encourages’ Pakistani people to welcome a coup in their country, too. A country which celebrated the handover of power from one democratically elected government to another in 2013 (though, reports came out that the elections were rigged), is being told to give up all of that. Bravo! We all know how dictatorship has ruined Pakistan. We all know how dictatorship has ruined nations across the world. But, yeah, Pakistan Tehreek-e-insaaf chief endorses that very ideology which has prevented Pakistan to flourish.

 

Male-chauvinists lambaste a girl who wanted to shun the norms set for women across the society and the result is her being brutally murdered by her brother. Though, I am glad that her death was mourned over by majority of Pakistanis. But accept it people, it is us who are responsible for her death.

 

I sometimes wonder what is so wrong with the ideology ‘westernization’? Aren’t there people living in the West too? Don’t they have any feelings? Are they all bad? Then what harm is it that when someone tries to embrace the western culture, he or she is shamed to such an extent that they lose all hope in their very own ‘cultured society’? Thank you people for inciting the murder of Qandeel Baloch.

 

Some retards think of it as an act of bravery to shoot innocent, unarmed schoolchildren in Peshawar. There is some utmost sense of satisfaction that these retards feel while carrying out such ghastly coward acts. Similar to it is the Quetta attack where these retards killed innocent women students just to prove that women are fit to be housewives. Well, they feel threatened of these brave women and hence, they decide to silence their burning hearts with suicide bombings.

 

Why am I picking on the worst in Pakistan when it is like my dreamland? Well, I’m sick and tired of Pakistan’s ‘utterly obnoxious obsession’ with Kashmir. I don’t say that India is a perfect country. I won’t justify it. And I’ve got my own political views. But, Pakistan has this peculiar habit of putting their nose in everything ‘bad’ that is happening in India. It’s like, they’ve got such strong views about us Indians as if we are some outsiders and they are the victims of all the ‘injustice’ taking place in India. And I don’t know when they will realize that Kashmir is a part of India. And no matter how much they like to endorse this view that India has forcefully held Kashmir, they will never be able to prove it.

 

There are people like Shah Faesal out there in Kashmir who are realizing that all this ‘Azadi’ game is futile. If you want a better life, you’ve got to go the traditional way- education and a good job. But no, the Pakistani propaganda is to cripple the Kashmiris and make martyrs out of several Burhan Wanis.

 

One armed Burhan Wani dies and Pakistan announces a Black Day. But what about those unarmed, innocents that die everyday in Pakistan? Well, Pakistan is an intelligent state. They’ve got an answer to every question I’ll put forth. The innocents that are dying each day inside the Pakistani territory is all India’s fault just like the ‘innocents’ like Burhan Wani dying in India is India’s fault.

 

It is high time that we all realize that there are two nations- India and Pakistan. Not a saint (Pakistan) which is always crying foul of a devil (India) forcefully holding its self-declared child (Kashmir). And it is time for us Indians to realize the same too. Let Pakistan be, what it is. But I guess the firing (virtual) won’t stop anytime soon. It pains me to see that even the youth, which were the only hope, are also die-hard enemies of the two states. Nobody really endorses peace. Because hate sells faster than love. Can you imagine Modi winning an election by talking all sugar-coated stuff for Pakistan? Same for Nawaz Sharif and the likes of Imran Khan?

 

Nobody is ready to accept this fact. We all go on and on strewing hate at each other as if we have looted and killed each other’s family members. We all have been blinded by these hate-strewing politicians. But no, it is too straight a fact to justify it all, isn’t it?

 

Aren’t Indian army-men braving the stone-pelters in Kashmir? The army-men who are one among us. Born in ordinary families like ours and trying to save innocent lives. How hard is it to believe this fact? No one in Pakistan cries and photoshops stupid pictures when Indian army-men die, and that too daily. Children become orphans when their brave fathers die fighting the terrorists in Kashmir. But no, it doesn’t really matter. Why? Out of my understanding…

 

So, I urge all Pakistanis to get over their obsession of Kashmir and their never-ending hate for India. It won’t budge us Indians to think any less of our Kashmiri brothers and sisters.

 

That’s all I gotta say.

 

Praying for my Kashmiri brothers and sisters.

 

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-Clip 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,  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 🙂

 

A proud Barodian,

 

XOXO,

H

Posted in blog, blogger, bloggers, blogging, blogging 101, blogs, border, borders, brotherhood, childhood, communal, criticism, dreams, hate, hatred, humanity, india, indians, inspiration, Life, love, love poetry, Pakistan, pakistani, Partition, peace, personal, poetry, religion, social, Uncategorized, violence, war, writing

To The Angel In Jannah

Your demeanor,

Your smile,

Your eyes,

And your heart’s might.

This world has seen all.

Beautiful Angel,

Rest in peace.

 

A child’s cry,

A dog’s whine.

Your heart saw pain,

And did best to rectify.

 

Our eyes are full.

Tears that won’t stop flowing.

What have you done, Angel?

Oh dear, Angel!

Left us in absolute abyss..

 

But you are a beacon,

A beacon of hope,

A beacon of love,

Who not only taught us,

But engraved in us,

The true meaning of humanity.

 

Up there, you will witness,

A miracle.

A miracle you gave birth to.

People loving people.

Parents loved by children.

Women flying high.

Sick, far away from dying.

 

You ignited this fire.

We will carry it forward.

Oh dear, Angel!

Thank you for being you.

The truest form of humanity.

 

Why do I feel,

A part of you in me?

Why do I feel,

You taking care of me?

 

These borders they created,

Are meaningless, my Angel.

You lived in a forbidden land,

But I feel you right here.

 

Mercy; you gave birth to this word.

Oh dear, Angel of Mercy.

Humanity, taught by many,

But it is you who personifies it.

 

What is happening in this world?

Dear Angel, show us a path,

To eliminate this hatred.

Humans killing humans.

Dear Angel, we need you…

 

But,

You’ve done your part.

Done enough for us to realize,

That no one is an enemy.

Now it is up to us,

To love,

Love beyond the man-made ambit…

 

Thank you dear Angel,

You are my shining star..

 

P.S.– World after 8 July, 2016 is not the same. We’ve lost the greatest of great, the man who embraced humans as they are, irrespective of their identity as we know it, Abdul Sattar Edhi. Edhi sahib was what we can only dream of. For him, humans were his family. He knew love and hence, gave it exorbitantly. Animals were as dear to him as us, humans. He couldn’t see anyone in pain. From nothing, he built an empire; an empire of love, humanity and mercy. He was a father to millions. He fed millions. He, who defied all odds to serve the very purpose he was sent into this world. We all are sent into this world to help each other. So, let us all follow the path he showed us all. Defy all boundaries that we’ve constructed around us and give as much as we can. Anything that can comfort an ailing heart, give it. Comfort others. Love them. I think, that would be a real tribute to the greatest philanthropist of our time.

 

Forever in my heart.

 

XOXO,

H

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

Halfway Through, But Nowhere..

A thrush,

After complete hibernation.

Halfway through,

But not going nowhere.

 

The promises,

the hopes and the dreams.

Faded away,

In the stream,

Of thoughts,

That caught,

My attention.

Thereby,

Making me lose,

My own little world.

 

Speed as fast,

As that of a light.

My thoughts,

Took over my life.

 

Futile,

Is how I’ll describe.

My actions,

Made my life.

 

And, I knew,

The formula of losing,

By heart.

We, the ones fighting,

Gave birth to this art.

 

How? Procrastination.

And a severe dearth of,

A strong will,

And determination.

 

Halfway through this year,

And no way near,

To a world,

I vied for.

I have alas!

Lost my own war..

 

XOXO,

H

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

Against The Tide!

They gleamed,

And laughed.

Thought I was defeated.

And celebrated my debacle,

Resembling the brute Germans,

Of WWII..

 

I kept quiet,

Sunk in my thoughts;

“Am I a weakling?”,

“Should I bear injustice?”.

 

How can I forget,

That I revere Madiba,

Who was an icon of perseverance!

 

How can I forget,

He was a lone warrior.

Led the way to freedom,

By his ignited heart.

 

How can I forget,

He fought for 27 long years.

A silent war..

And in the end,

Defeated the evil legacy,

In their own game!

 

Can I not replicate,

The victory of truth over lie?

Can I not make them,

Vie for good times?

 

I will be responsible,

For all the (mental) deaths, 

by these brutes…

And I have to fight,

At my own risk.

I fear none.

Because what they hold,

Doesn’t scare me anymore!

 

They make us weak.

Threaten us.

But we bear it all.

All because we are scared.

But this fear arises out of ignorance.

Ignorance that,

No human can be told,

How to breathe.

So breathe,

And show them,

That their evil ideology,

Will not prevail.

And that,

Truth always wins!

 

XOXO,

H ❤

Posted in blog, blogger, bloggers, blogging, blogs, border, borders, brotherhood, childhood, communal, criticism, dreams, feminism, gandhi, hate, hatred, humanity, independence, independence day, india, indians, jinnah, Life, love, national, nehru, Pakistan, pakistani, Partition, peace, personal, poetry, punjab, punjabi, religion, social, terrorism, Uncategorized, war, writing

That Forbidden Land

Does this bird fly,

High in the sky,

In that forbidden land?

I wonder…

 

Children go to school.

Their bags stacked with books.

Mothers make breakfast.

In that forbidden land.

I wonder?

 

Did she marry,

The man of her dreams?

Did she go out,

To pursue her dreams?

In that forbidden land,

I wonder?

 

Friends going on long drives.

Girls giggling in posh cafes.

Ladies gossiping on streets.

Does this happen for real?

In that forbidden land,

I wonder?

 

That forbidden land,

Have swathes of paddy fields.

Children sleeping on footpaths,

It also has a bunch of women,

Who set an example for humanity.

 

That forbidden land,

Have grandpas and grandmas,

Who tell bedtime stories,

To children just like ours.

 

Can I join them too?

Can I be a part of their dreams?

Can I not understand their feelings?

In that forbidden land,

I wonder…

 

Our history the same,

Our ancestors fought for the same cause.

But we fail to identify,

That our existence rests upon love.

 

We bicker and fight,

Trying to bring each other down.

For past sixty years, what have we reaped?

Come on, give me an answer?

 

Kids cry, wail and then laugh.

Kids, theirs and ours.

What difference is it,

That makes them our enemies?

In that forbidden land,

I wonder?

 

Heer is befuddled,

To which side she lost her lover?

Ranjha roams in every street,

Which world stole from him his Heer?

 

Put your hand on your heart.

And then think it through.

Would you like the same hate?

The abuse you shower at them?

 

What is their fault?

What did they do?

Because of a bunch of politicians,

Billions of us suffer.

 

Born in the same land.

Our problems, the same.

Then instead of sympathy,

Why so much of hatred?

 

We humans will bring Doomsday,

Soon, very soon.

Why don’t we then bring in love?

And let those wounds soothe?

 

That forbidden land,

The land we all belong to

That forbidden land,

Is waiting for you, too…

STOP STREWING HATE AT PAKISTAN JUST BECAUSE IT IS PAKISTAN. #LOVEISTHEONLYSOLUTION 

indopak_jpg_1261225g

XOXO,

H

Posted in childhood, criticism, dreams, hate, hatred, inspiration, Life, love, peace, personal, self-help, short story, story, Uncategorized

Why Mothers Are Great

So, in general, every mother is great. We can’t compare. But obviously, I have a little bias towards my mother because of the fact she gives me the best advice!

 

Why this sudden show of affection towards her? Well, last night I was a little agitated because someone said something very rude to me. I was complaining to her. But she said, “I’m gonna WhatsApp you a video. You are always complaining to me about others, worrying they criticized you, blasted at you etc. Do watch it.” And after that, she hung up the call.

 

And within no time, my phone beeped. It was that video. When I started listening to it, a whole lot of emotions started filling up my heart. I wanted to hug my mother. She never talks of revenge or lashing out at others, who did wrong to me. She always advise me to forget it. To concentrate on MYSELF.

 

It was a video of some motivational speaker who talked about how we are being a hurdle in our pathway to success. How? By getting bothered about people who talked ill about us, by making that bad experience or memory rule our mind. He talked about how a rocket goes up in the air by leaving parts of it behind, which gives it the thrust to fly high. In the same way, we all need to do away with all the negativity in our lives. Just let it go. There’s no good in thinking over it again and again. Make yourself free of all the chains of negative energies in your life.

 

Recently, I took the step of eliminating some negative energies that ruled my mind. And believe me, my life has been a lot better. It was possible only because of my mother. She tells me that there’s no good in surrounding yourself with negative people. She never talked ill of those people. Even I don’t bother about them. Some people are like that way. If they are doing something you would expect them do with someone else, don’t be shocked when they do that to you, too 🙂

 

CONCENTRATE on yourself! She tells me to work hard on myself and leave how others behave or talk or dress or whatever. For her, I am the topmost priority. When I’m all enraged, she listens to me patiently, never utters a single negative word, then calms me with her best advice.

 

I will be a mess forever. And she will work to declutter that mess, FOREVER 🙂

Mother-Daughter-1000836

XOXO,

H

Posted in blog, blogger, blogging, blogs, dreams, hate, hatred, humanity, inspiration, Life, love, peace, personal, quotes, self-help, social, Uncategorized, writing

This Is Not The End Of The World!

As it happens, life isn’t easy after all. Or is it?

 

So, on the first anniversary of my blog, I want to write something GOOD! ‘Feel good’ types!

 

A couple of days ago, this thought crossed my mind- This is not the end of the world. This is so damn true! Like, just stress on it for a moment. If there is something bothering you right now, just think over it. Is it the end of the world?? Is it??!!!

 

No. Right? It is never the end of your own little world! Life is like a universe. Containing galaxies. Millions of them. And if there is something not going right in one of your galaxies, it ain’t gonna affect the others. Will it?

 

Car broke? Don’t wanna commute with public transport? Is it really a big problem? Or are you just exaggerating it in your own mind?

 

Got scolded by someone? Your teacher? Boss? Or whoever? And it is killing you from inside? You’re stressing over it so much that everything else has taken a backseat. Cool down, mate. Cool down. It’s just a bad day.

 

I know it’s hard. I know you are hurt. I know it feels like a dagger drawn through your heart. The rage is killing you. Your head is gonna burst. But, but, but! Breathe. Breathe deeply. And think over it. You are not that stupid to let something as meager as this take up all your time and energy. Unload the extra baggage, my friend. Time is a great healer! This too shall pass!

 

Cry if you wanna. Shout if you wanna. But do not let these minor setbacks get into your skin. Do not let these setbacks decide how your future is gonna be. Just let it go. Let it be! THIS IS REALLY NOT THE END OF YOUR WORLD!!! Your life is so much more than this!!!

 

P.S.– Thank you so much my WordPress fam for your support! It has been an incredible year! Met (well, virtually) so many beautiful souls! Also, I realized one of my longstanding dream of starting with a fashion blog. Finally, took the big step and here it is- Couture and Croissants 🙂 Immensely grateful to the almighty and to each one of you 🙂

 

Much Love,

H 

Posted in childhood, dreams, inspiration, Life, love, love poetry, peace, personal, poetry, Uncategorized

Her First Love

Splurge,

Splurge, my dear.

Your needs,

Small or big,

He will always fulfill.

 

Cry,

His handkerchief is there

His shoulder for you,

Cry, as much as you want.

He will always be there.

 

Blame,

Blame, my dear.

Blame him for your debacles,

But he won’t budge.

He will always correct you.

 

Laugh,

Laugh, my dear.

He will make you forget,

The fight with your friends,

He is your best friend.

 

Ask,

Ask for any damn advice.

You know you can rely,

For he is always right,

He is your Sophocles!

 

Father,

The one who never cries,

But dies inside,

For your life is more important to him,

Than his own.

Hence, toil,

Toil, my dear,

To make sure,

That he always holds his head HIGH!

father

XOXO,

H ❤