Wednesday, May 20, 2015

So, What Kind of Ashamed or Proud Indian Are You?



I do not remember exactly when but sometime in the past 10-15 years or so, a phrase caught the fancy of people in India. “Mera Bharat mahan,” it said in Hindi, meaning, “My India is great.”

This happened much before the current ruckus around Prime Minister Modi’s remark to the effect that Indians have turned from being ashamed to proud in the past one year (presumably under his rule). The social media largely took it as an insult that the insinuation was that Indians were an ashamed lot before they elected him and his party BJP to power. The hashtag #ModiInsultsIndia started trending furiously.

The two “items” above are somewhat related and symptomatic of a virulent divide that can be seen playing out on social media, in various clubs and other platforms, among different “stripes” of Indians.

The arguments are seen flying thick and fast, without much justification or civilized argument, often taking an ugly, unintended or tangential turn. The prevailing attitude is: my way or the highway.

Let’s first see the different sides of people in India.

One side, let’s call it Side A, comprises a small majority that wears its pride on its weapons of noise and nuisance. Some in media call them the “saffron brigade” but I find it silly to use the otherwise nice and healthy moniker “saffron” (which represents the color as well as the substance) for a motley bunch of trouble-makers. Members of Side A keep coming up with inane remarks or pronouncements once in a while, usually with distorted notions of what being a Hindu means and often with little or no impact on the society at large. (But the media adds turbo aviation fuel to their puny fires and makes the whole affair seem like a conflagration. More on media in the Side D part below.)

On another side are the majority of “common” people, Side B. In India you can see them everywhere: on railway platforms, in bustling markets (not malls), in buses, toiling in the fields or at construction sites, in factories and offices, and several other places where “the milling crowds” can be spotted. They belong to multiple religions. One way to define their commonality might be that the wealth manager of a bank wouldn’t touch them with a barge pole. Constituting 70 to 80% of Indian population, they are primarily busy worrying about the next meal or sticking to their work or job. Mostly, they have no business about this “proud Indian” thingy.

Let’s call the political class, Side C. What? Why are you laughing?? It’s we, people of the page, who have elected them (in whatever fallacious ways democracy works in India). With two of them, Arvind Kejriwal and Narendra Modi, hopes of positive change surged among the electorate in recent times—but more recent events concerning both these “special characters” are quickly dashing those hopes into the dust. (Now a third character, a curious sort, is going around on padyatras (walking journeys) after taking a two-month-long holiday and flip-flopping about what he should be doing or should not be doing—and the eyes of the nation are watching his handsome face with bewilderment mixed with suspicion or sycophancy, take your pick).
It is an open secret in India how its political class has failed every test: be it making India an egalitarian society, controlling population (or pollution, for that matter), achieving self-sufficiency in defense or technology, or any other parameter of the human development index. Yes, there’s one thing they have excelled in: filling their own coffers and making sure their next seven generations are taken care of, especially at the cost of common citizens they are supposed to “serve.”
Side D can be considered to comprise media folk (for the sake of simplicity, I’m including both mainstream and social, though it’s not so simple, I know). Barring some very, very few kindred souls, whose hearts ache for real, investigative reportage (though they may not be able to produce much “journalism” for want of financial or editorial patronage), the majority are happy-go-lucky, shouting, rash, brash, prejudiced, hurried and harried types. The kind you see on TV shoving mikes in people’s faces for “bites,” or trying to out-shout a battery of “personalities” speaking simultaneously in ominous voices from small squares on the screen, or the ones belting out quickie articles without much thought or corroboration of facts...You get my point, right.

The growing, prosperous class of entrepreneurs, businessmen and industrialists can make up Side E. They are not bothered about who is in power: they want electrical power for their machinery. They are not bothered about corruption: they want their things done. They are increasingly losing patience for long-term planning: they want quick results (read money). To be fair, there are a few conscientious, honest guys (and gals) in this category, but they are too few in number and just too difficult to find, especially in a “developing” India.

The majority on Side E are like the storied baniya (person of a caste in India thought to be shrewd at business since old times) who told Yamraj (an Indian deity said to appear at the time of one’s death, a la Grim Reaper) when the latter asked him whether he would like to go to heaven or hell: “Jahan do paise ka fayada ho wahan le chalo bhai!” (“Take me wherever there’s some profit to be made!”)

I have often seen such businessmen chant “Mera Bharat mahan” with an impish twinkle in their eye rather than pride in their heart.

There’s another, much smaller class, though. Side F defies stereotypical categorization but you can be sure they do exist. I’m not supporting or endorsing anyone, but I’m talking of the Anna Hazares, the E Sreedharans, the MS Dhonis, the Khemkas of India who are doing what they must to salvage, nurture or enhance whatever pride India is left with after centuries of foreign rule, exploitation, ignorance and misdirection. Here I would also include people with some sense of discretion and a modicum of education and decency in their head who can perceive all the histrionics going on at the moment. They may lack monetary means or political capital or influence but they have wisdom in ample supply.

Sure, there are overlaps and inter-connections among the above sides. But the point is, before you go batty over the question of hurt pride, you may want to look at which side you are on. And, along with that, consider how you would like to answer these questions:

* Who are the people in India who have the right to take pride in being Indian?
* What are the specific things to take pride about India—from its glorious past as well as its jumbled present?
* Is there a proud future for India as a whole in the next 10, 20, 30 years? (Don’t quote GDP only, please!)
* What are the various ways in which that pride can be hurt? Which of those ways are most harmful to India in terms of real impact? How much time should be spent on discussing minor hurts versus that spent on taking effective measures?

Maybe it’s high time we stopped getting on our high horses every now and then and, instead, started putting things in their right perspective. No short-cuts but long, even arduous pathways; no slanging matches but exchanging well-reasoned arguments; no shouts, nor murmurs but just the right tone to convey the right sense of pride in the right context.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Introducing My Book, Strings of the Soul

I’m writing this blog post to introduce to you my first book, a non-fiction titled Strings of the Soul.

A few days back, after dilly-dallying its publication and hoping to find a non-me publisher for a little over a year, I put it out on Amazon.com as a Kindle book (besides the Kindle reader, it can be read on any device supporting the Kindle app). My thoughts: better to suffer the ignominy of being a self-published author than allow the book to gather digital dust.

Not that it’s not gathering dust now: it’s one among millions of books carried in the mighty sweep of "the Amazon," hidden in some corner somewhere. But chances, however tiny they may be, do exist that it will be discovered, bought and (I sincerely hope) enjoyed by readers across ages and nationalities.

So let me talk about Strings of the Soul, which comprises 16 pithy chapters on a few things in life that really matter: Beauty, Wisdom, Truth, Love, Childhood and Happiness, among others.

(What follows reflects the Introduction to the book, plus some excerpts.)

As an evolved species, human beings have achieved great material progress and the wheels of science have rolled on long enough to blur the lines between fiction and reality. But somehow, things just don't seem quite right.

If we look around carefully, much of the wealth is confined to a few. Most people on the planet seem willingly or unwillingly indulgent in a massive loot, and we are caught in a global epidemic of greed. The poor want a little more, the middle class want a lot more, the rich want even bigger enrichment and the super wealthy want every goddamn thing!

The entrails of Earth are being churned viciously to provide for an accelerating cycle of greedy consumption. Social institutions and ethical values are undergoing monumental changes. And much more is getting produced than at any other point in human history.

Yet, in the midst of our apparent abundance, the human soul seems barren and hungry.

Who amongst us is taking pleasure in the scent of real flowers instead of gloating in artificial perfume? Where are the kindred spirits who spoke of such virtues as Truth, Love and Wisdom? How are we to experience the true joys of life through Nature's bounty when we are bent on shutting ourselves into concrete boxes in city upon city?

I agree that in the current structure of society, it is difficult to pull away from the lures of what most people deem a good life. But, what really is a good life? Is it just to have money to buy all kinds of stuff we probably don't need? Is it to flaunt the wealth generated from abuse of the planet? Or is it to live a decent life of quiet bliss and collective harmony?

I think it is time we took a hard look at our notions of goodness and ideas about what constitutes holistic – and not just materialistic – progress.

We are all children of joy but, alas, most of us end up as miserable adults – uncomfortable with who we become and what we achieve in life.

It wouldn't be to wise to become a Luddite, nor is it practical to try and reverse the march of industrialization (except, perhaps, make the march less indiscriminate). But it might not hurt to go over the pristine notions of a few things in life that really matter. To sit back, to take a little while and to think about the so-called abstractions: Beauty, Balance, Faith, Childhood, Happiness...and to consider how we relate – or want to relate – to them.

I do not profess to be a Buddha, nor are the thoughts expressed in my book free from flaws and faults. But I have put them down with a sincere and unabashed belief in some inherent, eternal things that make us what, according to an ancient Hindu text, sometimes even gods envy to be: human.

I hope this little pond of meditation will be able to nurture a few tiny ripples that can help us return to our truer, more celebrated selves.

Book Excerpts
Here are some thoughts culled from Strings of the Soul:

Wisdom is the knowledge that at any given moment, the right choice is the one that helps the most number of conscientious creatures. And what separates wisdom from mere knowledge is the courage and humanity to make that choice.

***
Knowledge has to be acquired; wisdom comes.

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When you think of wisdom, there's a warmth in your mind. When you speak wise words, there's love on your tongue. When you do something wise, there's a silent applause all around you.

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Do not give me wisdom at the cost of kindness.

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I may be wise or I may not be. But if I profess to be wise, I might actually be a fool.

***
Happiness is a state of mind, all right. But how do we attain it? For one, we should stop trying too hard – because it is that state of mind which requires the least amount of effort.

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Happy is he who laughs in the innermost sanctums of his mind.

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Never laugh at someone else's misery but always smile at your own troubles.

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Each time I see a child laugh delightfully, I know that nothing else in life can matter more than this. And that we must do everything in our power to keep her laughter alive.

***
Laughter is the magic with which we can bring the dead to life.

***
To cry sincerely is as important as to laugh freely. Perhaps more.

***
Like misery, laughter loves company, but it does much more: it creates companions all around.

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The quality of our laughter reveals the constituents of our character.

***
To my mind, there are three kinds of beauty: one that appeals to the senses, one that captures the intellect and one that touches our soul.

***
The beauty that Character bestows on us surpasses everything else.

***
Beauty doesn’t exist anywhere as a complete entity. But fragments of beauty can be found just about everywhere.

***
A thing of beauty can enslave our mind just as we ourselves can be the master of something beautiful. Yet both the master and the slave can enjoy an amazing association with beauty.

***
Nothing is too beautiful or too ugly for the senses to experience.

***
I have learned that we must not always despise what people call ugly, and we must not blindly worship what’s thought of as beautiful. We can, of course, see true reflection of the ugliness or beauty of something through the prism of our mind – but only when it is steeped in the light of knowledge and the warmth of wisdom.

***
When I look at the world with a child’s eye, everything looks beautiful to me. And whenever and wherever I look at children – they just look beautiful to me. Children are one way that nature continues to replenish us with beauty.

***
Beauty can make us laugh with pain; it can also make us weep with joy. Isn’t it remarkable that this is not a stark contradiction but a unique human experience?

***
If you’ve read this far, you may want to go a bit further as well :) I’m giving the Amazon.com link to Strings of the Soul below: buy the book for yourself, for someone in your thoughts or maybe just share the link with your dear ones…





Sunday, March 22, 2015

6 Best Practices for Digital Pros and CXOs that Click


Digital marketing is fast coming into its own as a specialized discipline. From the early days of setting up websites left, right and center and cutting checks for search engine optimization, it now encompasses social media, mobiles and apps as powerful new possibilities.

So much so that some companies now have Chief Digital Officers (CDOs). In some cases, the CMO or the CIO may wear the hat of the CDO as well. The point is, the digital realm is getting bigger and more important as you read this.

In a world that is happily clicking away for content, groceries, travel, leisure and anything that fills up our life, how do you do digital? Sure, a bunch of boutique social media firms and others with 360-degree charters and integrated plays have come up recently, but as a digital marketing professional or CXO, it wouldn’t hurt to keep a few best practices handy, would it? So here you go:

1. Identify the digital goals for your organization: There are pioneering companies that have set their ambitions to nothing less than complete digital transformation. At the other end of the spectrum, there are (still) firms that are splitting hair about whether to go beyond a brochure or static website. Deliberate on where your company wants to be in the next one or two years and decide on specific digital goals.

2. Get the T&T (the team and its tools): Both these Ts will be crucial to the success of your digital efforts. However, in all likelihood, if you have the right team in place, they will go find the best digital tools to work with.

Again, in today’s increasingly fluid scenario, having a team doesn’t necessarily mean hiring bench-loads of Facebook junkies; it might work better to onboard a couple of digitally savvy professionals who are nimble-minded. They could even be hand-picked from within the company. Also, they should be able to manage the work outsourced (if any) to specialist agencies, programmers, etc.

3. Have a well-articulated social media policy: We keep reading of employees or customers cribbing on Facebook, Twitter or other social sites, followed by the klutzy approach taken by certain companies to respond to their comments. Given the generally open culture that social media fosters, even those who are not authorized by the company end up jumping in the fray—often causing reputational damage.

Building a brand online may be considered hard but it is nothing compared to the nightmare of salvaging a sullied reputation. It is best to have a detailed, idiot-proof policy (this must remind some of their boss :) concerning the use of social media and responding to comments or taking any other course of action. Goes without saying that a quick complaint-redress mechanism needs to be built alongside the policy. On social media, you must respond in minutes and hours rather than business days or weeks.

4. Mobile in the middle: In the feverish world of e-entrepreneurs, they have a new mantra for a successful business model: it’s called mobile-first. The idea is to think of the mobile phone (essentially the smartphone) as the first touch-point for customers (some storied mobile-first stars include Instagram, WhatsApp, Uber, Spotify and Evernote, among others).

Not every corporate entity on Earth needs to be mobile-first, of course. But with the usage of mobiles exploding and the number of those phones going smart increasing like crazy, it would be stupid not to give “mobile” the place it deserves. The caveat here is not to think of mobile in terms of any single device but to look at enabling employees, partners, customers—whoever—to interact with your organization anytime, anywhere, using anything that can connect to the Internet (you might have heard of the Internet of Things).

5. Balance speed and quality: If you ask around, most people would agree that the speed of life as well as business has gone up several gears in the past decade or so. In the context of digital, they would also aver that quality—the quality of content, software, etc—has gone down. While the race for digital supremacy is impelling most organizations to cut corners on quality, reduce time-to-market and respond to customers faster than ever, the winners will likely be those who manage a fine balance between speed and quality. It’s tough to achieve, but very much within reach, especially for companies that are not constrained by resources (or mindset).

6. Spread digital as a culture: This one is for the long term as well as the biggest impact. Arguably, it’s also the trickiest one. Remember the old saying, “You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink.” Having said that, people are not horses and digital is much different from water. With a top-down approach, can-do motto, the right tools and persistent monitoring, long-term organizational change can be brought in.

The key here is culture rather than strategy: you can strategize all you want, but unless the organization’s culture is soaked in digital, the results would be sub-optimal. No wonder management guru Peter Drucker is said to have once remarked, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” Or lunch, if you are a lunch person, but you get the idea.

And here’s the short, two-word conclusion to this article concerning your digital journey: start now.

(The above article first appeared on IndiaDigitalReview.com.)

Friday, March 6, 2015

5 Things CIOs should Probably Know about the Internet of Things

In the past few months CIOs would have been bombarded with headlines along these lines: Internet of Things will disrupt how business will be done in 10 years; So and So says IoT is a gazillion dollar opportunity; IoT will cause new security headaches for IT managers...etc, etc, etc.

The headlines would, of course, have been followed by futuristic scenarios (some beneficial and some alarmist), details on offerings and products, and other nitty-gritty of what makes IoT so, ahem, different.

And as is likely in such cases of continuous media strafing, people tend to think of the technology either as mere hype or too futuristic or, if I may say, too banal.

But sometimes, when the technology is as all-encompassing as cloud computing or IoT, entire industries, not to speak of companies, can undergo cathartic changes. So let us take a peek at some of the key things CIOs, business decision makers and tech professionals should know about IoT:

The name of the beast: First things first. This much is clear: the idea behind IoT is to get more and more devices, including items of everyday use other than PCs or mobiles, connected to the Internet in order to bring more and more intelligence into the system. So, who coined the term “IoT” and is it the only one to depict that idea?

When I asked Google about it (I didn’t ask Page or Brin but typed in my query, of course), it told me this: “Kevin Ashton supposedly coined the phrase “Internet of Things” while working for Procter & Gamble in 1999.” This puzzled me. See, this information appeared in Google’s own box that comes on top of all other search results, including Wikipedia. I checked Wikipedia, too, and it confirmed the name of the P&G guy. So let’s give the credit to Ashton (though I’m still uncomfortable why Google was unsure and played safe with “supposedly coined”; if Google doesn’t know something for sure, who does? )

As to the terminology, IoT is not the only term and there are other contenders—including Internet of Everything, Internet of Anything and Industry 4.0 (reminds you of Web 2.0, Web 3.0, etc, doesn’t it?) From what I gathered, IoT is by far the most used term, so I’m sticking with it. (There’s another term, M2M, which is considered as the precursor to IoT by many in the industry; while some people quote a few technical differences between the two, it seems M2M is more or less being subsumed or replaced by IoT.)

The scope of IoT is, like, huge: From changing whole business models and impacting supply chains to creating a new environment for how consumers live and how the ever-smarter cities make use of all that embedded intelligence, the scope of IoT is limited only by human imagination.

If you look at the projections for the number of devices to be connected to the Net or the estimated revenue impact from IoT, humongous is the word. While research firm Gartner says the number of connected devices will grow from less than a billion in 2009 to 26 billion units in 2020, estimates from Cisco suggest that 25 billion devices will be connected by 2015 and 50 billion by 2020 (Gartner excludes PCs, tablets and mobile phones from its tally whereas Cisco’s figures include all types of devices). There are projections from other firms as well. Irrespective of whose data you look at, the numbers are much bigger than the entire population of the planet.

Further, a Gartner report says that “economic value-add (which represents the aggregate benefits that businesses derive through the sale and usage of IoT technology) is forecast to be $1.9 trillion across sectors in 2020.” To put that number in perspective, the entire spending on IT and telecom worldwide is estimated to be $3.8 trillion in 2015 as per IDC.

A matter of industries and degrees: As the hype phase continues, no one is denying the overall big-ticket impact of IoT. However, it has been conjectured that the impact will differ in degrees and that certain industry segments will be affected much more than others. According to Gartner, these verticals are leading the adoption of IoT: manufacturing, healthcare and insurance.

But adoption will also depend on which new “things” come up in the market for connectedness and which other segments or companies drive innovation through their own use-cases.

The challenges en route: The direction IoT will take is being set each moment and each day, as vendors (especially biggies like IBM, Intel, Cisco, Google and Qualcomm, among others) continue to jockey for pole position in the market for IoT components, gear or services. One of the major challenges is equipping existing devices with a chip intelligent enough to be powerful and useful yet cheap enough to be commercially successful on scale. Another is the high failure rate of start-ups that come up with new “things,” connected hardware such as smart meters, wearable devices, health monitors, etc. The reasons for failure could range from high cost of development (and hence the device), lack of consumer interest, or just being too ahead of the market.

Companies may also be wary of embracing IoT due to additional liabilities or issues (privacy, legal tangles) engendered by the customer data captured, stored or monitored through IoT devices.

And then, the existence of multiple standards for wireless (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Zigbee, among others) will likely continue to be a headache. Pointing to the fragmentation in connectivity, Rob Chandhok, president of Qualcomm's interactive platforms unit said in a recent article on WSJ.com: “It's not that things aren't getting connected—they are getting connected badly.” (In another context, his remark would gel with those who know how Internet generally works in India.)

Management and security hassles: CIOs and other decision makers will have barely eased their BYOD pain when they would be facing the much larger prospect of handling multiple “things” across the length and breadth of the company. On their part, solution providers are working towards filling the gaps in IoT security. For instance, ARM Holdings recently acquired a Dutch firm Offspark to include the latter’s PolarSSL, an IoT security layer for across-the-devices usage, into its mbed IoT development platform. McAfee, owned by Intel, enhanced its security management for Intel IoT gateways. There’s much happening by way of streamlining security for the upcoming IoT world.

Having said that, information security is already a highly complex and daunting task for most organizations—and the complexities and challenges are only going to multiply when more data flows through more devices, often in real or near-real time.

All in all, developments in IoT will be quite interesting for CIOs and decision makers to watch and ready their own organizations for solutions or services relevant to their business.

For instance, the BFSI sector would continue to innovate around micropayments, contactless or virtual cards (that might be apps or embedded into a wearable); healthcare providers would keep coming up with new gadgets and services to remotely monitor health parameters and administer medicine/advice; connected sensors will make better sense of energy use in smart buildings or cities—and yes, more and more fridges will order milk from the supermarket on their own.

Friday, February 27, 2015

An Open Letter to Indian PM Narendra Modi

Dear Narendra,

I’m addressing you with your first name even though you are the Prime Minister of India. This I’m doing after taking a cue from you during Barack’s recent visit to India (Barack, as you very well know, is the President of the United States of America, also known by the quaint acronym POTUS, especially, I’m told, by the legions of security personnel who protect him from known unknowns, unknown knowns or whatever…you get it, right?).

I hope you now have some breathing space from your jet-setting schedule and from entertaining world-renowned guests to tea at expansive lawns, amid the sharing of stories of courage and hardship from your childhood and youth. You, like your bespoke tailoring suit, rock, man! I know this because you yourself have told everyone loud and clear at multiple forums.

And even though you have tried to share your Mann ki Baat (matter from the heart) on state-sponsored radio, something tells me you are hiding a lot deep down your 56-inch chest.

In all possibility, this hiding may be causing you undue pain, pain that is hidden from this cruel world that only knows to laugh at, ridicule and criticize politicians rather than show any empathy.

The other day, I overheard a bunch of wealthy businessmen chuckling at your discomfort. One of them remarked, “Bechara Modi! (Poor Modi) He must be sick and tired of one or the other of the Sangh Parivar making some religiously loaded or divisive comment every now and then. If this goes on, his economic agenda will be derailed sooner than Kejriwal can change his mind!”

As of writing this post, Kejriwal hasn’t but Rahul Gandhi, the scion of India’s long-ruling Nehru-Gandhi political dynasty, is probably thinking of changing his mind about something critical in his life—perhaps because he couldn’t change the sinking fortunes of the Congress party in the last general election.

But then I digress, so let’s come back to you…

You apparently set in motion a Modi wave that swept through the poor country that India is. The millions of jobless youth, tens of thousands of entrepreneurs whose businesses were suffering because of UPA-II’s scams and indecisions (and the handful of mega-industrialists who had billions riding on that wave), among countless other voters, brought you and your party to power.

It’s possible that the pain in your chest is a manifestation of all the unfulfilled election promises. And it doesn’t help that your poll prospects from the rest of India (after Delhi) wherever elections are due are seen to be declining.

I know you have tried hard to package old Congress wine of policy schemes and structures into swankier new bottles but, unfortunately, many people want results, not hangovers.

Every now and then, there are comments from one business tycoon or the other, including some international credit rating agency, that the prospects of growth have begun to look good for India. But there are contrary opinions as well.

At least one industry shouldn’t be complaining: media. I have seen your ads on innumerable pages of newspapers, on hoardings all over the city, on so many websites where you would least suspect them to appear, and wherever there has been space to accommodate your well-bearded, avuncular face. And I have not yet reached the state of naiveté where I can believe that the media moguls have given you space for free because they are all Modi bhakts (devotees) or consider splattering those ads an act of patriotism.

Let us get this straight: I’m all for ads because they affect me too, for I’m also part of the media industry. But I think spending on building toilets and recycling waste will be more effective than saying, “Clean India, Clean India!” or “Swachh Bharat, Swachh Bharat!” a hundred thousand times.

Allow me to take just one example: I sometimes use the public loos in Delhi where a lot of swanky urinals were installed in ex-CM Sheila Dixit’s tenure (around Commonwealth Games I think). But hell, there is no water or flushing system and people just keep pissing into the ceramic receptacles ad nauseam.

Would it be possible to divert some of the tidal water from the Modi wave to flush out the filth in the capital’s urinals? (Other cities and towns would be worse off, I presume, and also in need of urgent watery intervention).

Another instance where I can speak from personal experience is the poor state of data connectivity. While your government has quickly launched some websites and your social media machinery is quite active, those gestures do not a Digital India make. I know, I know, other initiatives are in the works—but my fear is that as far as broadband connectivity in India is concerned, it has been always in the works for the past 10-15 years (many other “comparable” nations, meanwhile, have zoomed past India in “digital index”).

Narendra bhai, everyone knows your full name and that you are the PM of India by now. Ab naam ki nahi, kuchh kaam ki baat chalu karo! (Now start talking of the work rather than the name.)

I know you sleep fewer hours than many of your other, able-bodied political brethren. But please remember that hundreds of millions of Indians still sleep on an empty stomach. And those who do get their fill, still have no choice but to empty it in the open.

As of now, shit is one of the biggest things we make in India. The pun, though unfortunate, is intended.

You must fix a lot of things before India can proudly unleash its “lion” out in the world for its roar to be heard.

Maybe you can start by doing more and saying less.