Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Tragedy Strikes

On 11th April 2011, as I was preparing to leave for Delhi to attend a e-governance forum, I heard the tragic news: Three of our students are missing in the Derras Dam. I was shell shocked for a moment. I prayed that the missing students are alive. I gave up my plans to go to delhi. I proceeded to Derras with Ajit.

In Derras, the forest guard told us that the accident has happened in Jhumka Dam. We went to Jhumka Dam. It was sprawling with police men, news men, village people and some of our students. One of the bodies has been recovered and was sent to hospital. We waited for about 3 hours before the two more bodies were recovered. I went to the campus to sense the mood spent an hour there and instructed everyone to help the police, doctors and the parents.

On 13th, we had a condolence meeting. It was attended by large number of students. It was a emotional event and many of the students and faculty were weeping silently.

A few days later, we had a Shanti Homa.

The incident is more or less forgotten by now though the campus still remembers the tragic event which hit the Institute so early in its life.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Deities and Demons

The ICC world cup just got over and India won the world cup after 28 years. The first time India won the world cup was in 1983. Few of us were lucky to experience the event.

I has just finished 5 years in IIT. We are really desperate to get out the IIT. My father was posted in a village. I was there before I was to proceed to Mumbai (Bombay then) for my first job in Nelco. The Prudential World Cup was in progress in UK.

No one gave any chance to India. However, I gave a faint chance for India's win. India was still learning the art of ODI cricket. In the first match Gavaskar played through all the sixty overs and scored 60 and perhaps thought he had done quite well. Shehwag today scores that many runs in 6 overs. India had visited West Indies before the world cup. They had done remarkably well. Mohindar Amarnath found a way to handle the West Indies Quickies by Hook shot.

In the first match India beat West Indies. It was a shocking game for both India and West Indies. West Indies was shocked that they lost. India was shocked they won. When Ravi Shastry took the last wicket, the cricketing world was truely shell shocked.

The match with Zimbawe was another shocker. When I tuned in the Radio, India was 17 for 5. I thought, this is end of India in the world cup. I switched off the radio and did other things. When I switched on again after about 2 hours, Kapil had scored over 170 runs and India was still batting. India went on to win that match. It was victory from the brinks of defeat.

India won and lost to west indies and Australia in the league stage. Then, there was semifinals against England. England started celebrating victory even before the game began. They thought it was a cake walk. In one over Sandip Patil scored 24 from bob willis. That one over gave victory to India.

In the finals, India could score only 181. We all thought India has done well to reach the finals and even a loss is not bad. India bowled out India to every ones surprise.

That month I had my ears glued to the radio for 10 hours a day. I had kept extra batteries in case I will run out of battery and miss the BBC commentary. The thrill was beyond imagination.

The cricketers were living deities at that time.

Many of them fell from grace subsequently. Kapil cried on BBC over match fixing in 2000. We saw that happen to former IPL Boss Lalit Modi.

It is important to keep your feet on ground both when you succeed and when you dont.