The Case of the Blue Cornered Notice

The Enforcement Directorate served a Blue cornered alert against former IPL Commissioner Lalit Modi, allegedly for FEMA violations. Mr Modi, though, denies having been served with any such and says it is just another of the petty games the BCCI is playing.

“Just not cricket”, exclaimed the Modi camp, flushing red in their agitation “they are just green with envy”.

We caught up with our source in the Board and taxed him for details. He turned quite purple with emotion.

“But why tax me like this?”, he pleaded. “Modi’s the one that has done all the evasion.”

His gleeful grin gave him away though and we settled down for a chat.

“Was all this really necessary?” we asked. “Is it not enough that you have snatched from him what was essentially his creation?”

“Now his goose is really cooked”, he said rubbing his hands,” We also threw out two of his favourite teams, the Royals and the Kings from the IPL. All that allusion to blue blood, really! Now he’ll feel really blue.”

“He says he has not received any blue cornered notice. What do you have to say to that?” we enquired.

“Elementary, my dear Holmes”, he said, ” he has received the notice all right. He probably cut the blue corner out of it. He is quite adept at cutting corners you know.”

And that quite effectively ended our interview.


Bus Day

The world observed Earth Day yesterday to help prevent global warming. Bengaluru has been observing Bus Day for some time now to encourage people to take public transport and leave their private vehicles behind. And apparently it is a big hit.

International Women’s Day

The conversation in the Club veered around to the International Women’s Day as it was sure to. It all started off with my mentioning that I had received a rather accusatory text message saying “You did not wish me today”, and my saying that I was still rather fogged about what that was all about.

The discussion moved on to how people all over the world were observing the day. This chap mentioned that Hollywood had the best do where the who’s who attended the Academy Awards.

“But that was the day before the IWD!”.

“Sure, but it was the IWD in more than half the world by then”.

So we conceded the point, but wondered what that had to do with the IWD? The chap replied it had everything to do. “Just look at all the nominations and awards they gave to women”, he said, “especially in the Best Actress Categories!”.

Not knowing if he was being facetious, I said I liked Ben Stiller dressing up as a character from Avatar when he presented an award. “Talking of Avatar”, the chap went on, ” did you know that one of Cameron’s ex-wives said that Titanic was the mistress Cameron left her for? And that a film made by another of his ex-wives beat him at this year’s Oscars? That’s saying a lot for woman power.”

Not to be left out, a fellow said that that was nothing compared to what India was going to do on the day. “Pass the Women’s Reservation Bill”, he said. When we wondered what that would be, he said it was a bill to ensure that 33% of all parliamentary consistuencies would be reserved for women alone. “Affirmative action”, we scoffed, “it would never work”.

Sure enough, the Bill fell flat on it’s face, leading all women leaders to fume. But why does the country need affirmative action when a woman is President, a woman virtually runs the country, another controls the marxist unions, and a third runs the largest railway in the world?

And to what end, I wondered, all this reservation, when crimes against women are still so rampant, honor killings and crimes rife, female infanticide common, the sex ratio skewed against women (it has improved to 838 they say, but is that really an improvement?), when out of thousands of candidates for 544 seats in the Parliament, this country could manage to elect only 59 women in the last elections?

So much for a day dedicated to women!! Maybe what this country needs is to dedicate it’s whole self to women every single day of the year!

Oncolytic Viruses

We saw some time back about how medical science is trying its hardest to fight viral illnesses, even to the extent of trying to find ways to fight a rather innocuous illness like the common cold. Not all viruses are bad for humans though. Modified and attenuated viruses are used extensively in vaccinations. Viruses have been used to deliver genetic code to modify cellular behaviour at various levels; take genetically modified plants for example.

Now scientists are testing how a certain group of viruses can be used to selectively target cancerous cells in order to destroy them. The theory about Oncolytic viruses is not new by any means, but their clinical application has taken time to materialise. Clinical trials are underway in a number of countries including India and China and hopefully will pave the way to cancer therapy with far fewer side effects.

As it says somewhere in this article, maybe one day people will want to catch a Common Cold!!

Suspended Animation

The scientific world is all agog about recent demonstrations that Hydrogen Sulphide, a gas released by all animals and characterised by the smell of rotting eggs is instrumental in causing mice to enter a state of suspended animation.

One wonders that it took so long to demonstrate this, given that since time immemorial, people have been knocking other people out cold by releasing the gas, especially after a heavy meal of eggs.


Valentine’s Day

People do many different things to make Valentine’s Day special. Some send cards, others send gifts, yet others roses. People meet up, dine out, or otherwise do something intimate to make the day special. A group of Australian statisticians have apparently come up with a formula to apply to matters of the heart. Yet others in India object to the celebration or threaten violence.

This couple I know, however, decided to make their first Valentine’s Day post-marriage last as long as they could. They flew out of India just as the 14th was born and continued flying east until they landed in the west coast of the USA sometime in the morning of the same day; totalling up to some 36 hours in 14 Feb 2010. Now that is truly an innovative way to spend a really long Valentine’s Day!!

Jai Ho!

We have all heard a lot about Jai Ho and how AR Rahman has taken over the world with the song. However, Bollywood is being adapted in really novel ways. Here are some Hindi movie songs placed in a very non-Indian setting. And very beautifully done too!