Shaadi ke Side Effects

This is the story of after effects of marital bonds and I guess (?) every (most) married person in this world will relate to some or the other aspects of it. Who knows …. the story might be yours πŸ™‚

Last week I was watching “Pyar ke Side Effects” on my computer. I got impressed by that movie and Rahul Bose’s on-line commentary on the side effects. The story like many masala Bollywood flicks ends with the heroes being tied up in the nuptial knot, but not without a pinch of salt about the usual male-female clashes. Afterall, life is not the usual fairy tale statement that they happily lived ever after but I feel it should be that they tried their best to happily live ever after πŸ™‚ . While watching that movie, an interesting idea came to my mind. What about marriage?, I mean what are the side effects of marriage? Thought of writing some fun on it – “Shaadi ke Side effects”.

The first thing that came to my mind is time-li-ness/ time-less-ness. These two words have very significant implications in the life of a married man. Interestingly, one of my friends who used to be stingy about time and used to get ready 10 minutes before the schedule for a meeting, got delayed by 20 minutes even after repeated reminders post-marriage. But, contrarily the same person rushed back home in a reckless speed almost breathlessly from within the meeting citing the reason that he was already 7 minutes late for a movie show that he and his spouse had planned to watch together (no not in theatre but on cable TV at home πŸ™‚ ). While dropping me on the way, he jumped out to get a popcorn packet for his beloved and brewed the popcorn himself as a punishment for the delay (reported).

Another important and sometimes positive side effect of nuptial bonds is lesser aggressiveness in dealing with situations. The same person who would compromise not even if an entire army decided to shoot him down at once decides to become cowed down to situations. Your life becomes not your but someone else’s property…which he/she has the right to plunder ;)….Remember the song mar diya jaye ke chod diya jaye bol tere saath kya saluk kiya jaye? ;). The person who would not compromise on food or sleep can remain awake and hungry for hours … such are the ways of marriage and married people πŸ˜‰ πŸ™‚ . No more is seen from the black/white view point… it is a “Chalta hai” attitude.

In India the basic problem for any aam bachelor is roti, kapada aur makan (food, clothing and house)! Thanks to the many cheap fast food joints/ vada-pav stalls and some cheaper textile mills that food and clothing is taken care of, but house and especially houses in cities are still the biggest problem for poor unsheltered bachelors (both male/females). But after marriage, suddenly you are chastened and every house owner thinks ur rejected or second-hand stuff and will not create any nuisance for their kith and kins (especially daughters/sons) – “Chadde ko kamra nahin milega” still echoes in my ears 😦 .

One more side effect is a sudden boom in visiting friends, relatives which becomes a regular event. Hell becomes heaven (heaven becomes hell too in same cases 😦 ). How dare you not praise your aunt-in-law for her new hair-do! How dare you not play chess with your spouse’s uncle! After marriage, friend circles gets expanded, because of a mutual acceptance of both parties’ friend list…may be an entire orkut! :0 or facebookΒ  (some time gets contracted too if your spouse prefers no one in his/her vicinity 😦 ).

While writing this, a popular saying in Hindi came to my mind, “Pahela saal pati ka, dusra saal patni ka, aur tisra saal dono ka”; in the 1st year, husband speaks every thing and wife listens to those obediently, in the 2nd year wife speaks and husband listens and in the 3rd year, both of them speak and we (the neighbours) listen…!!

aamjunta don’t forget this πŸ™‚ and yes… please do share your experiences.

Right to Information (RTI) – Aamjunta’s weapon in nation building

Right to Information (RTI) Act 2005 came into force on 12th October 2005. It is an act extends to all govt. organizations including executive, judiciary and legislature and private organizations which are substantially funded by the govt., of the entire country except the state of Jammu and Kashmir, passed in the Parliament of Govt. of India. The aim of this act is numerous; to make the system transparent, to reduce corruption, to bring information to the ordinary citizens (AAmjunta πŸ™‚) in the form of official records, proceedings, emails, circulars, govt. orders etc., and to give power to the common man who is the root of Indian democratic system through fundamental rights.

RTI can be used to speed up the process, to make the system work as per the rules, to bring transparency into the system, to inspect any govt. work, to make officials more accountable. It is an integral and essential part of nation building. In this post we have described the basics of RTI.

How to get the desired information?

The process of getting information under RTI is broadly divided into 3 parts.

1. The applicant should prepare the questionnaire in English/Hindi and prepare the application on plain paper. (Some organizations have specific application format and are available on their website.) The applicant should mention (a) his/her complete address for communication, (b) the information desired in the form of questions (reason for asking questions are optional), and (c) should mention whether he/she is under below poverty line (BPL) in the application.

2. The application can be submitted in person or through post to the Public Information Officers (PIOs) of the organization. Every organization comes under the purview of RTI act appoints (PIO) to provide information to the applications received under RTI. To discharge the duties under RTI, PIOs can ask for assistance from any officer, who has to render all desired assistance.

If the applicant is not under BPL, then the RTI applications should carry a prescribed application fee (minimum Rs. 10/- ), otherwise there is an exemption in application fee. The fees can be paid through Indian Postal Orders, Money Orders, Demand Drafts or through even cash payment. If any further fee is required, then the same will be intimated to the applicant in writing by the PIO.

3. After receiving the application, the PIOs should provide the desired information in writing or in any desired form viz., CD/floppy/disk within a specified time limit.

The time limit for giving the information under RTI is 30 days from the date of application and is 48 hours for information concerning the life and liberty of a person. The maximum response time is 35 days, in-case the application for information is submitted to Assistant Public Information Officers (APIO), is extended to 40 days in-case of any third party is involved in the process and 45 days in-case of human rights violation information is desired. Failure to provide information within the specified period is deemed refusal.

The penalties for not providing information or un-necessary delay in information is Rs. 250/- per day and up-to Rs. 25,000/-. For illegitimate refusal to accept application, malafide denial, knowingly providing false information, destruction of information, etc., the penalty is up to Rs. 25,000/-. There will be a recommendation for departmental action for persistent or serious violations. However, denial of information is not a criminal liability.

What to do if the information received is not satisfactory?

If the information received is not satisfactory, then the applicant can appeal within a specified time period (around 30 days) to the 1st appellate authority (officers of senior rank to PIOs or designated officers) of that organization. All appeals are free of cost (some state governments have prescribed a fee). If the applicant does not receive information even after the first appeal then he/she can take the matter forward to the second appeal stage.

Comments

RTI should not be used to harass or blackmail any public officer. Similarly, the public officers should not harass the applicant for filing RTI application. In both the cases, law of the state will take care. RTI should be used with right spirit and to build the nation, not to destroy.

Jai Hind.

PS: We would like to thank Mr. Shailesh Gandhi, who taught us about RTI and who has encouraged us to file RTI applications. To know more about RTI, kindly visit http://www.satyamevajayate.info

Aamjunta of R. K. Laxman: is it relevant now?

Famous cartoonist R. K. Raxman created “The Common Man” through his daily cartoons “You Said It” of the Times of India some time in 1951. It is a comic character and represents the omnipresent observer of Govt., acts, organizations, famine, growth, debate, deals, etc. It is a background character, an average citizen and is a silent witness to every thing that is happening in this world. More than half a century has passed since the “The Common Man” was created. The political equations, the economic scenario, the socio cultural life have changed; more than a dozen prime ministers have ruled the country; blood baths, terrorism, riots have shaken the common man’s faith.

With so much changes, do we want the “The Common Man” to be silent? Is that background character relevant in the rapidly changing world? Don’t we think the common man should react to the anomalies? Don’t we think the common man should take the responsibilities to build a nation of its interest? It is up the common man, the aamjunta, the junta janardan to decide. It will be too late if we don’t act now. Some one has to start, else there will be an infinite waiting time.

It is the time for aamjunta to act now πŸ™‚

Aamjunta starts speaking

Yes… Aamjunta starts speaking. It’s a small baby now in blogging. Like a baby’s initial days of talking, its words are not clear, the blogs are not matured; even then… it will continue in its mission. This is the first blog of its own kind. In the era of Internet, blogs are essential for a complete and healthy life of an aam junta. This is because, amount of time one spends with computer is much more than any other activities. All activities starting from social to business, travel to health, politics to education are carried out through Internet. The humane touch through social gatherings, the tender love through sweet words, the affection and closeness through eyes are missing in every body’s life. Life is becoming a machine, a business to be evaluated in terms of success and failure, a commodity to sell or buy.

How to live then? Where to express one’s views? With whom to share?… the big questions!!!!!!!? very simple, open up your mouth, express your feelings, share your views… through blogs; through which you can reach the hearts of others.

Learn to live and let live…

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