Thursday, December 29, 2005

Andaman Cellular Jail by Navneet

Andaman Cellular Jail by Navneet
Posted January 6th 2003 (Message 298 )

Hi Navneet,
What ever prompted you to post this message on the Cellular Jail in Andamans. I do not think anyone in this group can be closer to this monument and this Island than Rambo himself.

I am sure when I wrote an article on accepting generation gap, I had touched briefly on Andamans Islands during Jap occupation.

I was born in Port Blair, Andamans Islandsand I was if fact born in the cellular jail building itself as soon after the war a couple out of the seven jail wings were converted to form a temp hospital. This was in 1946/47.

My dad infact was the Jailer as well as the Hospital administrator and he woprked for the Central Govt of India. He retired in 1957 as the Assistant Comissioner of Nicobar Islands.

Is there anyone in this group who has links with Andaman Islands ?? I would love to get in touch with them.

One of my unfulfilled dreams is to go back to Andamans to relive the memories. I lefty the place in 1955 to join St.Bedes High School at Madras. Recently we ran into a couple who had lived in Andamans and believe it or not lived in the same house we did and do remember that the name Sharmila which my older sister wrote on wet concrete surface in the back yard is still there.

Kind of spooky yeeeeow.

In July 1999, I visited the Alcatraz in SF Bay. Man it is nothing compared to the Andaman Jail. I must remember to pass this link to my Bengali friends who inevitably (After about four scotches and one ton of Luchis and kebabs, start discussions as to who the real father of the nationm is GANDHI OR NETAJI SUBAS CHANDRA BOSE. Dominic & Syngal dada, would like to hear from you two about this as topic as you were born before the Independence of India.

dear all,

a memorable website on the Andaman Freedom Fighters.
visit it if you get the time.
especially see the "Contact Us" list.
i am sure some of the freedom fighters who are still alive would love a letter from us. or even an email. you can send email to

there is also a list of some of the revolutionaires with photographs.

B.Tech CS
IIT-B 1994

Dear Rambo and Navneet,
Yes, I always had a strong desire during my childhood to visit
this pilgrimage centre, the Kala Pani Jail. My dream got realised
when I joined Indian Navy on completion of my B.Tech in ECE from
KGP in '79. And I had the opportunity to visit Port Blair 4 times
and the last visit was in oct 2001. Everytime I made it a point to
pay my homage to thousands of martyrs. And the cell where Veer
Savarkar was kept and the light and sound show really inspires you
and tears roll down your eyes and you get angry to learn of the
atrocities by the British jailers.
We may or may not call Netaji as the father of the Nation. But he
was a tall figure those days and anyway ahead of Nehruji.
Sorry no debate on this pls.

Pleasantly surprised by a "Navy mate" in the net!
So I did visit "Andamans" on Ranjit as Commander "L"Aug 87 during Sri Lanka Ops.
Cellular jail is a must ,bears testimony alike all other jails of that era where all our freedom
fighters were incarcerated and killed to finally gift us "Mera Bharat Mahan"!
Now even the quality of inmates have fallen beyond repair!
Tushar dutt,
IITM , elec, 70
Hello Everyone,

Independent India does not teach enough about the violent part of the Independence movement in her schools. May be the reason is to exalt the non-violent one more. I am glad to learn more now, and sorry to say that I did not know enough earlier.

Since the wishes of those who were jailed there, and who were able to collectively state their wishes to the Indian Government, and the public, have not yet been fulfilled (as far as the library, and research in entirety to bring out all the facts go), what can we do to see them fulfilled? Can we ask international stalwarts like Nelson Mandela (who was also in South Africa's Andaman for many more years
than the Indians in Andaman but who probably faced less (?) ), and others to speak quietly to the Government of India?

Considering what our neighbour has been indulging in for many years against India, and saying about it, wouldn't they use this (which is our common history) as justification for their already calling their mercenaries freedom-fighters or say that what they are doing now is the same as what those jailed there did?

My wife, and her family did live in Port Blair for 1 or 2 years in early 70's when she was in the 1st or 2nd grade since her father, who was in the Military Engineering Services, was posted there. I do not know if atleast all the children who are in school there are taken to the jail area, and taught that part of our history. Is there a jail on any of those islands now?

1979 IITM B.Tech. EE (LC)

Getting down to the ground by Dr,V,N,Sharma IITK

Getting down to the ground by Dr,V,N,Sharma IITK
3rd January 2003 ( message No 281)

I think we are discussing the details of newspaper reports too much on what is ailing India or its development process. It does not take us anywhere. My suggestion is that discussion, in a very precise manner and with patience, should now converge to what is to be done to remove those ills. I am giving something from the past and a proposal. Pl. go through with patience before responding.

I started socio- political activities wayback in 1965-66 at IITK with a large group and continued there upto 1979 after which I took over a change of job from IITK to SAIL / RDCIS at Ranchi, Jharkhand from where I took voluntary retirement in July this year. I find very few iitians of those days in the variety of communication
list foriitians. Perhaps they have no interest in getting a job and have lost all hopes in seeing a positive change in this country. In the beginning I also felt like many others do today that they can change India with some more efforts and some communication. But with passage of time and day by day I found it more and more difficult.

Most of my friends and colleagues dropped out from such socio political activities almost then at IITK itself. Yet I have continued with these activities as I perhaps have become more thick skinned.

The experience of last 23 years in Bihar/ Jharkhand was a bit different because this is a more complex situation with existence of tribals, at the same time existence of huge mineral and natural wealth, uncontrolled exploitation of human, large christian and muslim populationetc. Experiences at IITK and Jharkhand has made me conclude that an intellectuals perception or understanding of the problem of the people is mostly wrong esp. if the person is fully busy in some other pursuits. It requires declassing of a person first and developing himself in the process of development. Many may feel offended but there is no short cut to this. The internet/e-mail group discussions may give us some satisfaction of doing something but it has no meaning for the masses. I do not think most of the IITians in general are capable of doing this sort of thing.

Such detailed work on the ground cannot be their cup of tea. But some of them certainly have done wonders and can do that now. I am saying this with my personal experience of IITK of 1967-77 period if some of you are still there. A group of faculty, students and staff were attempting to conduct experiment on some positive changes. They were all branded "Naxalites" and the leaders sent to jail. I am proud that most of them -the students and majority faculty stood by the cause.

Development in my opinion should be first the development of mind rather than straight mechanical or electronic creation of wealth. At the cost of being misunderstood I feel that it also requires development of IITians and Indianthinkers including me before we start taliking on these lines. In view of this my suggestion is that

1. In stead of starting on India's development in top gear get into the socio-economic and cultural history of the land, their need, the level of technology needed and analysis of the various inputs required.

2. Define the perception of development and the target group.

3. Formulate a programme on the basis of that.

4. Form a group to work for it (adopt or develop a village/ settlement or develop water bodies in a region or start a good teaching /research institution for engg. agr.or medical education - kind of an IIT or MIT of your imagination- depending on the resources available).

5. Take sabbatical, start working on the ground on full time or replacement basis

6. Experience the difficulties youself - not through the newspaper reports and find solutions.

Alternative is that you serve India all alone like (Late) Anil Agrawal of Centre for Sc. & Env. New Delhi. I request you all to critically examine and respond to the

I have taken voluntary retirement in July 2002 from my regular job with SAIL and I am available to take part in the programme if I am convinced of the seriousness of getting down to the ground level.

M.Tech (Met.Engg.,IITK); Ph.D.(Env.Sc.& Engg., ISMD)
Environment & Water Management Consultant,
A-100, SAIL Satellite Township,
Ranchi-834004, Jharkhand, India.
Phone: 91-651-2441524.

The Silent Achiever-Ram Krishnan-IITM 1966.

The Silent Achiever-Ram Krishnan-IITM 1966.
Posted By Ramboaus on 3rd January 2003 (Message No 280 )

The New Year 2003 has dawned on us. Let us pray that it brings Peace to the World (keeps President Bush from killing innocent Iraqi men women and Children) and brings Prosperity to Mother India.

With the new year I got this Good news today that I would like to share with all IIT-Global members. It was about mid-day and I saw my good friend Ram Krishnan IITM 1966 who lives in Minnesota come on line. I just said Hi and we started to Chat He then shared this secret with me.

For members from other IIT's, Ram Krishnan is the President of IITMAANA and the man behind Akash Ganga and RWH Project in Madras. He is well and truly a silent achiever with a real passion for what ever he does. He was one of the first to endorse the IIT-Global idea and I thank him for his support guidance and even scolding when I stirred up the members.......(well it did wake some sleepy heads to atleast come and tell me off and go back into hybernation.)

Have a read of this article and I am sure it will make you feel proud. It is about one man's effort to bring about changes to the lives of the people in a village that he adopted. He sacrificed his own career as an Engineer and has devoted his life for the betterment of his adopted village.

Now I know that not all of us have the passion to do anything like this. Some of you are very young and have to follow your Career dreams as well as find life partners and bring up children etc etc. But there are those of us in the group who have almost reached the retiring age Children have grown up and have grown their own wings and moved away from home. I am appealing to members in this age group to use this model and adopt some village that appeals to you, in any part of India and see if you can change the lives of of people of that village.

Most of the focus by educated Indians has been to take up activities in the Cities, understandably due to convenience. But it is the Rural India that needs this support to transform. Please consider.

Look forward to your responses.
Please send your replies to Ramrajah@optushome.comau

I am sure Ram Krishnan will help set up a network to assist with adopting villages. My 1970 IITM batch has an Initiative Called ENVIKAL spearheaded by my good friend N.T.Nathan and we have adopted a village called Alamathi. I will try and coax my batch mates to extend our efforts to adopt this village and duplicate the efforts based on this model. Our efforts at Envikal are now now limited to internet and CAD training of the underpriveleged school Children at Alamathi in Tamil Nadu. With Nathans support I am proud to say that Jeevodaya, my pet Charity was able to screen most members of Alamathi for Cancer. ( Ram may be you should organise a cancer screening of all members of Kuthambakkam Village.)

May the force be with you.
Just like "Little Drops Make an Ocean"
I am sure "Little efforts can bring about a BIG change"

IIT Global-Moderator

Rajat Gupta- MD of McKinsey- Indian enterpreneurship & the need of the hour...

Indian enterpreneurship & the need of the hour...
Rajat Gupta- MD of McKinsey-
Posted by Ramboaus (Message No 277)

I am aware that this article is almost two years old. I am also aware that India has made a huge progress in the IT-Sector especially in Bangalore and Hyderabad during this period. Now the question is does anyone have any figures on how much progress India has made in this sector in the last two years and how does this stack up with this article by Rajat Gupta ??

I would like to invite Rajat Gupta to brief this group of IITians on the progress made by ISB and the achievements of India Venture 2000 as well as the successes of TIE India Angel Forum

(Rajat Gupta is the Managing Director of McKinsey & Company and also the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Indian School of Business.)

Rajat gupta's article:
India Today, February 12, 2001
India needs entrepreneurs.

It needs them for two reasons:
to capitalise on new opportunities and to create wealth and new jobs. A recent McKinsey & Company-Nasscom report estimates that India needs at least 8,000 new businesses to achieve its target of building a $ 87 billion IT sector by 2008.
Similarly, in the next 10 years, 110-130 million Indian citizens will be searching for jobs, including 80-100 million looking for their first jobs; that's seven times Australia's population. This does not include disguised unemployment of over 50% among the 230 million employed in rural India. Since traditional large employers - including the government and the old economy players - may find it difficult to sustain this level of employment in the future, it is entrepreneurs who will create these new jobs and opportunities.

Fortunately, today's knowledge-based economy is fertile ground for entrepreneurs in India. The success stories of businesses built on a great idea executed by a talented team have great appeal in India, where access to capital is scarce and regulation has often created barriers to success. And young Indians have a dream: to be the next Sabeer Bhatia of India. Estimates indicate that several thousand
'new economy' businesses were launched last year in India.

This is not just a "big-town" phenomenon. For example, when McKinsey & Company launched India Venture 2000, a business plan competition to catalyse entrepreneurship in India, many of the 4,500 teams that participated were from small towns such as Meerut, Siliguri, Warangal and Pollachi. I believe India has an extraordinary talent pool with virtually limitless potential to become entrepreneurs. India must, however, commit to creating the right environment to develop successful business builders. To do this, I believe India must focus on four

1. Create the right environment for success:

Entrepreneurs should find it easy to start a business. To do so, most Indians would start slow with capital borrowed from family and friends, the CEO playing the role of salesman and strategist, a professional team assembled months or perhaps years after the business was created, and few, if any, external partners. Compare this with a start-up in the Silicon Valley: a Venture Capitalist (VC) or angel investor would be brought in early on; a professional management team would drive the business; a multifunctional team would be assembled quickly; and partnerships would be explored early on to scale up the business.

A first challenge for India is to create a handful of such areas of excellence - the breeding ground where ideas grow into businesses. Some already exist in a very preliminary way (the businesses are there). For example, Gurgaon and Hyderabad for remote services, or Bangalore for IT services. But these areas of excellence need
strengthening before they can claim to be India's own "Valley." One way of strengthening these areas is to consider the role of universities and educational institutions - places where excellence typically thrives. Creating such educational institutions by strengthening the Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT's) and
starting new ones is going to be very important.

2. Ensure that entrepreneurs have access to the right skills:

A survey McKinsey & Company conducted last year revealed that most Indian start-up businesses face two skill gaps: entrepreneurial (how to manage business risks, build a team, identify and get funding)and functional (product development know-how, marketing skills, etc.). In other countries, entrepreneurs either gain these skills by hiring managers or have access to "support systems" such as universities or other institutions that may nurture many regional businesses. In addition, business schools give young graduates the skills and knowledge required for business today.

India can move toward ensuring that the curriculum at universities is modified to address today's changing business landscape, particularly in emerging markets, and to build 'centres of entrepreneurial excellence' in institutes that will actively assist entrepreneurs.

We believe the Indian School of Business (ISB) at Hyderabad provides a start in developing outstanding entrepreneurial leaders. ISB's program is designed primarily to prepare managers to respond to the challenges of rapidly changing business environments. Within an environment of intellectual vibrancy, the 500+ students who graduate each year will have studied entrepreneurship, strategy and the impact of technology on commerce. They will have spent time developing their own projects, while utilising state-of-the-art communications technology to interact with members of industry and experts worldwide.

The ISB will have an Entrepreneurship Centre founded, led and managed by several leading Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, who are on the school's Governing Board. The Centre will help students become successful entrepreneurs by offering a diverse set of programmes, activities and facilities such as a New Business Development
Project, an on-campus incubator, an Entrepreneur-in-Residence programme, field projects, and a Young Entrepreneurs Club.

3. Ensure that entrepreneurs have access to 'smart' capital:

For a long time, Indian entrepreneurs have had little access to capital. It is true that in the last few years, several Venture Funds have entered the Indian market. And, while the sector is still in its infancy in India (with estimated total disbursements of <$ 0.5 billion last year), VCs are providing capital as well as critical knowledge and access to potential partners, suppliers, and clients
across the globe. However India has only a few angel investors who support an idea in the early stages before VCs become involved. Our experience during India Venture 2000 showed this to be a critical gap. While associations such as TIE are seeking to bridge the gap (by working at creating a TIE India Angel Forum), this is India's
third challenge: creating a global support network of 'angels' willing to support young businesses.

4. Enable networking and exchange:

Entrepreneurs learn from experience - theirs and that of others. Much of the success of Indians in Silicon Valley is attributed to the experience, sharing and support TIE members have extended to young entrepreneurs. During India Venture 2000, we were delighted by the eagerness with which established entrepreneurs, who still remembered the challenges they faced, offered to support start-ups. Clearly, India would benefit from creating a strong network of entrepreneurs and managers that
entrepreneurs could draw on for advice and support.

The rapid pace of globalisation and the fast growth of Asian economies present tremendous opportunities and challenges for India. Through planning and focus, India can aspire to create the pool of entrepreneurs who will be the region's - and the world's - leaders of tomorrow.

Bhupendra Raja, an IITK alumnus is an OBE

Bhupendra Raja, an IITK alumnus is an OBE
Posted by Dr.Pradip on ist January 2003 ( Message No 276)

From what I see this 1975 Batch from IIT Kanpur has quite a few GEMS. Well done Bhupendra Raja and Congrats. I was in UK for months from May to end Ausust last year. Wish I had known we could have shared a Guiness one evening at a Pub. Thanks Pradip for forwarding this real good message for posting on the first day of 2003 message .

Would be nice if all members remember include their Batch, Branch and IIT details with messages.


Hi all

One of our very own, Bhupendra Raja, an IITK alumnus BTech, 1970 - 75) is in the list of honours announced today by the British Queen. He is abrilliant engineer, an outstanding manager of people and extremely nice human being. Interestingly
enough he is being honoured for his services to racial equality. I have had the opportunity to meet him after 25 long years in our silver jubilee reunion at IITK in the year 2000. It was indeed a pleasure and a priveledge to talk with Bhupendra -
a person with immense knowledge, wit and substance.

Our heartiest congratulations to Bhupendra. We are all proud of your accomplishments.

We wish Bhupendra a long and fruitful life ahead, many more honours and accolades to win.

Bhupendra Raja is an OBE!
"Deepak Mohoni" [Class-of-75]
31/12/02 08:05 PM

Great news - our very own Raja has just been awarded an OBE by the Rani.

Here's the extract from the page where the complete list appears

"Bhupendra Raja. Lately Assistant Director,
Department of Trade and Industry.
For services to Racial Equality. (Elstree, Hertfordshire)".


TeNeT- Message from Prof Ashok Jhunjhunwala, IIT Madras

TeNeT- Message from Prof Ashok Jhunjhunwala, IIT Madras
Oosted By Raj Varadarajan on 31st December 2002 ( Message 270)

Fellow Members,
Prof Ashok Jhunjhunwala-Padmasree, of IIT-Kanpur-Madras & TeNet fame needs no introduction. The State of TamilNadu has set aside ten acres of the best available land adjacent to IIT Madras Campus to create a Technology Park. You have guessed it right Prof Ashok Jhun Jhunwala has been appointed to spearhead this effort. The following is a message form him to all IIT-Alumni and all Indians in general to join forces so that we can take big strides in making India a better place. I request that every member spend just a few minutes to see if he can any remote way assist Prof Jhunjhunwalas programmes.

My dear friends,

Greetings from India, IIT and me.

Several friends and alumni have been exploring to find ways how they can pay back to IIT and India the debt of gratitude they feel, for what they are today. I am sure many of you are doing your bit privately wherever and whenever you can to help
humanity in general.

You may be aware that TeNeT group started its journey to bring telephone service in India, available to the common man. We have worked on a dream to provide 200 million telephone and internet connections in India. Towards this, affordability in India was recognised as a key issue. We have therefore worked to bring down the CAPEX cost of telecom infrastructure and played our part in bringing it down from over Rs 35K per line to about Rs. 18k per line. We have developed technologies and incubated companies towards this. Today we are dedicating ourselves to connect rural areas of India and have been promoting n-Logue communications towards this.

Similarly there are several leading institutions in India who are doing very advanced work in all fields including design and manufacture.

Alumni and Indians are around the world. They can use their contacts in India and the country they live in. I request all of you to be salesmen, good will ambassadors
or front office personnel to help the country you live in by channeling the research, development, design, and manufacturing work where it will benefit both the
countries. This you should do as a profitable venture so it is sustainable and makes sense to everyone involved.

Wishing you all the best in the new year.

Ashok Jhunjhunwala
Professor Elec Engg
IIT Madras

Address by Director of IIT-Madras- Prof M.S.Ananth on Dec 29, 2002

Address by Director of IIT-Madras- Prof M.S.Ananth on Dec 29, 2002
Posted By Rama Krishnan IITM 67 ( Message No 262 )

----- Original Message -----
From: Ram Krishnan
To: RamboAus

Address by Director Prof M.S.Ananth on Dec 29, 2002
Sunday, in the campus.

During the 1977 and 1972 batch alumni reunion event

This event was webcast thanks to Ravi Chandran - owner of Chennai Online - an alumnus himself.

Edited video files should be available at this site in a few days.

Consider the following as 'unofficial', 'unapproved' notes prepared by Ram Krishnan - IITMAANA - who watched the webcast in its entirety.

Ananth's presentation:

He used a PowerPoint presentation entitled - "Vision 2010"

1. Origin of IIT's - starting with Jawaharlal Nehru's vision, how the different IIT's got started, growth over the years, emphasis shifting based on various
needs, undergraduate education still the main focus, emerging needs for more relevant research, 'maintain a dynamic equilibrium with surroundings'

2. Why he suggests that the speaker repeat the message 7 times? Because only 1/7th audience is listening to you at any given time (on a light vein)

3. Student exchange program - many IITM students going to Germany and some German students coming to IITM (the Germans find that the Math level in IITM is too

4. Satellite remote campus of IITM in Trichy with support from BHEL. Doing well. Could lead to more similar efforts.

5. Research areas - as highlighted by the Planning commission - a number of specific areas (should get this list from Prof Ananth, infact get the whole PPT)

6. Technology Park - next door in Taramani village. The Tamil Nadu government has allocated around 10 acres in the old MGR Film campus. Under Prof Ashok Jhunjhunwala's leadership. Why get more space when IITM has 650 acres? Local rules to maintain the campus as a forest preserve, only 15% can be developed.

7. A new Boys hostel being designed. Some student groups had some design inputs. May be a multi-storey building - higher than the present hostels.

8. Mentioned a number of alumni supported projects starting with Sharawathi hostel, computer set-up in the library, a new computer centre which is already fully occupied.

9. In the process of providing connectivity to hostel rooms - Intranet in each hostel room, Internet in the common rooms.

10. A new common mess opened a few months ago. Close to OAT.

11. A new Gajendra circle memorabilia shop - permanent basis - on the ground floor of the Admin building - where the Director's office is located.

12. new electric motor driven buses used in the campus. The IC engine lab is working on a hybrid engine - using diesel and electric power - without the need for recharging (like the Toyato Prius)

13. Currently about 1/3 of the B.Tech graduates go abroad.

14. Some IITM faculty and student groups involved in Rural development projects. Would welcome new ideas from alumni

15. Completed the drinking water project - 2 reverse osmosis plants. Provides clean drinking water and for cooking in the various hostel kitchens

16. Concept of a dual degree. Normal 4-year program to get a B.Tech degree. A 5-year program to get a dual degree - B.Tech and M.Tech.

17. Inter-disciplinary faculty groups formed to encourage more relevant research areas. The 11-member group called Tenet Group by Prof Ashok Jhunjhunwala is
an example.

18. Media Lab with help from HP underway.

19. TCS (Tata Consulting Services) has interest in developing software jointly with IITM

20. On IIT50 - coming to San Jose. Was concerned with the security aspects of all 7 IIT Directors traveling at the same time. Also was wondering why a panel discussion taking place in San Jose should set the vision of IIT's. Shouldn't this vision discussion take place within India ???

21. Will know by jan 7th when the MHRD Minister Joshi will give the approval for the Directors to travel to US for the IIT50.

Earlier, the Director presented Distinguished Alumni awards to

Mr.B.S.Sudhir Chandra(1964-B.Tech/Civil) - Railways
Mr.K.V.Rangaswami(1965-B.Tech/Civil) - Larsen and Toubro
Dr.Meera Chandrasekhar(1970-M.Sc/Physics) - Univ of Missouri - Columbia MO
Ram Krishnan
St.Paul Minn USA
651-633-4251 (office) / 651-631-8622 (home) / 612-867-9425 (cell)
WebSite : for Rain Centre in Chennai
My YahooID is rkrishnan46 : Email -

How Our Taxes Work...

From: "Raju Jairam"
Date: Thu Dec 26, 2002 10:59 am (Message 251)

Subject: How Our Taxes Work...

How Taxes Work....

This is a VERY simple way to understand the tax laws. Read on -- it does make
you think!!

Let's put tax cuts in terms everyone can understand. Suppose that every day,
ten men go out for dinner. The bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their
bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this.

The first four men -- the poorest -- would pay nothing; the fifth would pay $1,
the sixth would pay $3, the seventh $7, the eighth $12, the ninth $18, and
the tenth man -- the richest -- would pay $59.

That's what they decided to do. The ten men ate dinner in the restaurant
every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement -- until one day,
the owner threw them a curve (in tax language a tax cut).

"Since you are all such good customers," he said, "I'm going to reduce the
cost of your daily meal by $20." So now dinner for the ten only cost $80.00.

The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes. So the first
four men were unaffected. They would still eat for free. But what about the other
six -- the paying customers? How could they divvy up the $20 windfall so
that everyone would get his "fair share?"

The six men realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted
that from everybody's share, Then the fifth man and The sixth man would end
up being PAID to eat their meal. So the restaurant owner suggested that it would
be fair to reduce each man's bill by roughly the same amount, and he
proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.

And so the fifth man paid nothing, the sixth pitched in $2, the seventh paid $5,
the eighth paid $9, the ninth paid $12, leaving the tenth man with a bill of $52
instead of his earlier $59. Each of the six was better off than before. And the
first four continued to eat for free.

But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings.
"I only got a dollar out of the $20," declared the sixth man, but he, pointing
to the tenth. "But he got $7!". "Yeah, that's right," exclaimed the fifth man,
"I only saved a dollar, too, ........It's unfair that he got seven times more than me!".

"That's true!" shouted the seventh man," why should he get $7 back when I
got only $2? The wealthy get all the breaks!". Wait a minute," yelled the
first four men in unison, "We didn't get anything at all. The system exploits
the poor!"

The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up. The next night he
didn't show up for dinner, so the nine sat down and ate without him. But
when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered, a little late what was
very important. They were FIFTY-TWO DOLLARS short of paying the bill!

Imagine that!

And that, boys and girls, journalists and college instructors, is how the tax
system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit
from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy,
and they just may not show up at the table anymore.

Where would that leave the rest? Unfortunately, most taxing
authorities anywhere cannot seem to grasp this rather
straightforward logic!

T. Davies Professor of Accounting & Chair,
Division of Accounting and Business Law
The University of South Dakota School of Business
414 E. Clark Street Vermillion, SD 57069
Phone: 605-677-5230
Fax: 605-677-5427

Jagath Chandra Giri - B Tech IITM 1969

High Achiever - Jagath Chandra Giri - B Tech IITM 1969
Posted by Ramboaud 0n 22nd December 2002 ( Message 246 )

Dr. Giri Jay.C - Jagath Chandra Giri B.Tech 1969, IIT Madras.
Director, Applications Engineering , ALSTOM ESCA , Bellevue,WA, 98004, USA
Telephone- 425 739 3445, Fax- 425 889 1700,

Birthdate-Sep 14th 1948
Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India - B. Tech- 1969
State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY- M.S.-1971
Clarkson University-Potsdam, NY, Ph.D-1977
1978 to present-ALSTOM ESCA

Manager, Power System Applications, Leads team of 20-30 power system engineers to develop Real-time control software for EMS Responsible for innovation in design and the practical implementation world-wide, of state-of-the-art EMS software for AGC and dispatcher training simulators. Almost two decades of people leadership and management of power system software engineers, for development of state-of-technology real-time control system EMS software.

Co-founder of ALSTOM ESCA in 1978, which is now the recognized world-wide leader in the supply of EMS technology. ESCA has grown from 12 staff in 1978 to over 400 in 2001.

Originally designed and implemented the first generation ‘advanced dispatcher training simulator’. This simulator design has been the foundation of training, testing and development for over two decades.

Originally designed and implemented an innovative comprehensive new AGC function which was tunable online; this function provided a suite of optional features that were user-selectable online. This AGC function is currently running round-the-clock and controlling generation at over 50% of US utility generation capacity and at numerous other national utilities such as South Africa, Portugal, Greece, India, Australia, etc.

Giri has been responsible for almost two decades of management in leading a team of 10 to 30 power system software engineers (mostly PhD and MS) in the development of state-of-the-art real-time EMS software for network analysis, generation control, training simulators, distribution network analysis and dynamic security analysis.

In 1978, co-founded ESCA with 11 other power system engineers. Over the past 5 years, ALSTOM ESCA has been the world-wide leader in EMS orders, has captured the dominant share of US EMS business and has numerous international installations. Is currently member of the ESCA Executive team.

Was solely responsible for the original design, coding and implementation of the ESCA AGC and training simulator software. This original software continues to be the foundation of the current ALSTOM EMS product offering. The ALSTOM AGC and simulator functions are utilized world-wide in controlling load and frequency of power system grids and training operators, for the majority of US utilities and for numerous national utilities world-wide.

Was responsible for almost two decades of people management and the development of the team of power system analysis software engineers. Team is currently 30 staff mostly MS or PhDs in power systems. Staff in the team have an average of 8 to 10 years of EMS experience and some are considered international experts in the EMS field.

Since 1990, Giri has been an Affiliate Professor at the University of Washington; has served on PhD committees, presented seminars and has taught a course on distribution systems.

Has been active in national and local IEEE activities; member of the following IEEE committees: PES, System Operations, Energy Control Center, Operator Training, Transmission Operations, Transmission Security, Power system stability, CAMS, COPS, Restoration.

Member of the technical committee of the 1999 and 2002 PSCC conferences

The ALSTOM ESCA AGC product.

The entire AGC code was originally designed, coded and implemented by Giris Team.
This is now part of the ESCA integrated EMP product offering has been deployed world-wide at over 100 sites. Consists of software code, documents, training material, and other product collateral. AGC runs round-the-clock at these sites controlling system frequency and following load; one of the largest systems is in South Africa where the entire country’s frequency is being controlled from a central site. A major segment (over 50%) of the US generation capacity is under ESCA AGC control.

The ALSTOM ESCA DTS product.

The power system dynamic simulation code (power plants and relays), the instructor subsystem code and interfaces with the EMS were originally designed, coded and implemented by the candidate. This is now part of the ESCA integrated EMP product offering has been deployed world-wide at over 100 sites. Consists of software code, documents, training material, and other product collateral. DTS is used for training operators and testing new functions. This has allowed all the ALSTOM ESCA customers worldwide to learn the product offline and to be able to conduct realistic factory tests prior to actual field implementation.

IEEE technical papers and Member Panel Sessions.

* "An Advanced Dispatcher Training Simulator", with Podmore, et al, PICA, Philadelphia, May 1981, also IEEE PAS Transactions, Vol. PAS-101, Number 1, pp 17-24, January 1982
* "Implementation and field experience of a national energy control system", with Barazesh,et al, PICA, Seattle, 1989, IEEE 89CH2747-4
* "An integrated scheme for online static and transient stability constrained ATC calculations", with Pavella, et al, IEEE SPM, Edmonton, Canada, July 1999.
* "Adaptation of EMS functions in a market environment", invited panelist, short paper, IEEE WPM, Singapore, Jan. 2000.
* Co-author of chapter 62 "Energy Management", with Stanton and Bose, The Electrical Engineering Handbook, editor, Richard Dorf, pp 1344-54, CRC Press 1993.
* Promoted to ESCA Executive team in 2000 in recognition of people management and business management results.
* Currently, Manager of team of highly qualified power system engineers some of who are internationally recognized experts in the field.
* Technical advisor/consultant for the European Commission sponsored project OMASES, related to development of online stability capability in an EMS. Project started in December 200) with ALSTOM France as lead; consortium members include ENEL, Tractebel, PPC Greece, and the following universities: Liege, NTUA, Strathclyde.
* Affiliate Professor of Electrical Engineering at University of Washington since 1990.
* Original author of the ESCA AGC analyst guide which describes process for online, non-disruptive tuning of AGC.
* Member of the technical committee for the European PSCC 1999, 2002
* Applications technical lead for helping secure the EMS projects for the 3 India projects: Northern region, North-east and Eastern. These projects will computerize the northern half of India with EMSs that will be communicating with each other in real-time. A key function will be optimizing all the available hydro resources in order to minimize the need for rotating blackouts.

Member of IEEE since 1976., Fellow of IEEE since Jan 2002.
Member of the following IEEE PES committees and subcommittees:

PES, System Operations, Energy Control Center, Transmission Operations, Transmission Security, Power System Stability, Operator Training, CAMS, COPS, power system restoration.

Chaired paper sessions at IEEE WPM and SPM conferences.
Presented papers and participated in panel sessions at IEEE WPM/SPM conferences.
Member of 1995, Power System Restoration working group which received the IEEE PES Working Group Recognition Award.
Affiliate Professor at the University of Washington, Seattle since 1990.
Member of Technical Committee for PSCC 1999 and 2002.
Co-author of EMS Chapter in the Electrical Engineering handbook, edited by Richard Dorf, CRC press, 1993, 2000.

IITM Alumnus IBM Fellow C. Mohan Awarded IEEE and ACM Fellowships

IITM Alumnus IBM Fellow C. Mohan Awarded IEEE and ACM Fellowships
By P.S.Ramanathan

Posted 22nd December 2002 (Message 245)

Dear Shri.Mohan,

IT IS GREAT to hear that YOU ARE the BLUE of the BIG BLUE!!!

Your mail expresses the entire situation with a crispness that is befitting a IBM guy/gal.

I have always believed that it is the silent achievers like you who have created a solid foundation for the brand equity, synonymous with our institute.

Our director Prof.MS is also a whole hearted supported of such low profile 100% achievers.

On behalf of IITMadras Alumni association I WISH YOU CONTINUED SUCCESS in all your future endeavors.

I personally share this joyous moment with you and wish you and your family the very best.

Yours Truly,


Regards P.S.Ramnathan B.Tech. Chemical 1975 Honorary secretary IITMAA 2002-03 also at

-----Original Message-----
From: C Mohan []
Sent: Sunday, December 22, 2002 7:52 AM
To: "M.S. Ananth"
Subject: IITM Alumnus IBM Fellow C. Mohan Awarded IEEE and ACM Fellowships

Dear Prof. Ananth (and others),

I am sure you won't remember me. I used to be a B.Tech. student in IITM during 1972-77. You have taught me also! Just in an attempt to jog your memory: Even though I was a chemical engineering student, I used to be passionate about computer science (CS), and hang out at the computer center all the time and I served as an office bearer of the IITM Computer Club during 1975-77. I used to be known as Computer Mohan and I actually wound up doing my BTech project in CS with Prof. Muthukrishnan as my advisor. Ultimately, I did a PhD in CS from University of Texas at Austin and joined IBM Research in San Jose in 1981, where I am currently an IBM Fellow (one of 51 in all of IBM), working mostly in the database management area. This being the year of the 25th anniversary of my IITM graduation, I am currently in Madras ((044) 2815 6636) and I am looking forward to meeting you and many of my classmates at the Silver Reunion after a gap of 25 years. I ! am very happy to inform you and the others that, as if to celebrate this occasion, a few weeks ago I was named an ACM Fellow and an IEEE Fellow. I have attached a file and inlined an IBM announcement about these fellowships. In case accomplishments like this by IITM alumni get publicized in any way (IITM web sites, Alumni newsletters, Chennai Online, The Hindu, SiliconIndia, etc.), especially in the context of our Silver Reunion and the IIT50 Celebration in Silicon Valley, I thought that this announcement may be of interest to you and the others. I have also copied some of my well wishers over the years, and people associated with the Silver Reunion and IIT50. If any more info is needed on my work, IBM Fellowship, ACM SIGMOD Innovations Award, etc., the following web pages can be looked at:

Please excuse me for blowing my own trumpet :-)))

With best wishes,
C. Mohan, IBM Fellow, IBM Almaden Research Center
650 Harry Road, K01/B1, San Jose, CA 95120, USA,
Work: +1 408 927 1733, Cell: +1 408 206 4027, Fax: +1 646 607 3180

C. Mohan elected IEEE and ACM Fellow
12/16/2002 12:18 PM

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and The Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) recently elected IBM Fellow, C. Mohan of Almaden an IEEE Fellow and an ACM Fellow, respectively.

"Mohan has been recognized worldwide for his innovative contributions to the development and use of database systems and as a leading innovator in transaction management," said Almaden Director Robert Morris. "We are very proud that he was elected Fellow in these two prestigious organizations."

The IEEE Board of Directors elected Mohan an IEEE Fellow, one of the Institute's most prestigious honors, for his "contributions to robust high-performance transaction management." Since 1963, IEEE has acknowledged individuals whose contributions positively impacted the advancement of engineering science and technology, bestowing the honor of Fellow on recipients with an extraordinary record of accomplishments in any of the IEEE fields of interest. Upon election, Fellows receive an IEEE Fellow pin and a certificate, that serve as visible recognition of their election to the highest grade of membership in the IEEE.

The ACM elected Mohan an ACM Fellow, for his "outstanding technical and professional achievements in computer science and information technology, and for his significant contributions to the mission of the ACM." The Fellows induction ceremony will be held at the ACM Awards Banquet on June 7, 2003, in conjunction with the Federated Computing Research Conference in San Diego. The ACM Fellows serve as distinguished colleagues who provide guidance and leadership to the ACM and its members.

About the IEEE
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc. (IEEE) is a non-profit, technical professional association of more than 377,000 individual members in 150 countries. Through its members, the IEEE is a leading authority in technical areas ranging from computer engineering, biomedical technology and telecommunications, to electric power, aerospace and consumer electronics, among others. Through its technical publishing, conferences, and consensus-based standard activities, the IEEE produces 30% of the world's published literature in electrical engineering, computers and control technology; holds annually more than 300 major conferences; and has nearly 900 active standards with 799 under development.

Soft Ware Stress by Fred Rodrigues IITM M Tech

Fred Rodrigues wrote:
Psoted 8th December 2002 ( Message 225 )

Stress takes its toll on Indian Techies
Bangalore, Dec 8

After leading a life filled with flashy cars and fancy parties, many software developers in Bangalore are visiting psychiatrists as stress and fear of losing their jobs take a heavy toll, doctors say.

"A lot more software engineers are walking in with stress-related problems now than an year ago," said C R Chandrashekar, head of the Department of Psychiatry at NIMHans -the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences in Bangalore.

"These guys complain of lack of appetite, body pains, anxiety, restlessness and poor concentration which are clear symptoms of stress," Chandrashekar told AFP.

"Some are burned out and others suffer from depression and anxiety. It is sheer workload and competition. Another key factor is the fear their job will not be there the next day" he said.

Bangalore is home to more than 100,000 software code writers and engineers, and accounts for about a fourth of India's software exports of eight billion dollars in the last fiscal year.

During the dotcom boom two years ago, software engineers were receiving fat pay packets and were very much in demand.

But psychiatrists said a depressed technology market and announcements of massive lay-offs by global firms have driven Indian software professionals to the edge.

"Some of them came to me and said when they went to office they found severance pay packet being laid out on the table. Others fear they will get only Rs 5,000 in place of the Rs 150,000 they were earning in their last job," Chandrashekar said.

"So, their prestige is lost among their friends. People laugh at them. Many of them do not have skills to cope up with this kind of stress. In other cases, they cannot keep pace with competition from juniors and peers," he said.

Doctors said the software professionals worked late hours and to strict deadlines which meant they were burning themselves out at a young age.

"Most of them are between 24 and 30 years of age," said psychiatrist R Srinivas, who has worked at Bangalore's St John's Hospital's psychiatry department for the past
18 years.

"They work for very long hours alone in a cubicle. When they travel abroad they have to cope up with a new culture. The suffering is more when despite all this there is a fear of being pink-slipped," Srinivas said.

According to market intelligence company International Data Corp, the global information technology industry suffered its worst patch ever in 2002, slumping 2.3 percent.

"Most of the cases coming to our hospital are burn-out cases. But the number of stress-related cases are also rising steadily," Srinivas said.

While some of the stressed-out Bangalore software engineers visit hospitals, many prefer to go in for self-help counselling groups in the city.

Ali Khwaja, director of Helping Hand, a voluntary counselling group, said family members were also joining in to help their stressed relatives.

"Roughly three software engineers are being counselled every day here. A year ago we would have one every three or four days."

"There are a lot of family members especially spouses, girlfriends and fathers coming in for counselling also," Khwaja said.

The lifestyle of software engineers contributes to their stress levels, doctors said. "They are earning too much too early. Being in a group which is comprising of young people without proper responsibility or projecting they have no responsibility is a disadvantage," Khwaja said.

He said there was an outward show of "false freedom and bravado" by software professionals who live life on a fast lane.

"Costly cars, latest mobile phones, brand new apartments and a fat bank balance are taken as symbols of prosperity. When one adds a fragile ego to that list, we can clearly see they are caught up in a strange environment," Khwaja said.

"It is a very materialistic world out there," he said.

Soft Ware Stress by Fred Rodrigues IITM M Tech

Fred Rodrigues wrote:

Stress takes its toll on Indian Techies
Bangalore, Dec 8

After leading a life filled with flashy cars and fancy parties, many software developers in Bangalore are visiting psychiatrists as stress and fear of losing their jobs take a heavy toll, doctors say.

"A lot more software engineers are walking in with stress-related problems now than an year ago," said C R Chandrashekar, head of the Department of Psychiatry at NIMHans -the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences in Bangalore.

"These guys complain of lack of appetite, body pains, anxiety, restlessness and poor concentration which are clear symptoms of stress," Chandrashekar told AFP.

"Some are burned out and others suffer from depression and anxiety. It is sheer workload and competition. Another key factor is the fear their job will not be there the next day" he said.

Bangalore is home to more than 100,000 software code writers and engineers, and accounts for about a fourth of India's software exports of eight billion dollars in the last fiscal year.

During the dotcom boom two years ago, software engineers were receiving fat pay packets and were very much in demand.

But psychiatrists said a depressed technology market and announcements of massive lay-offs by global firms have driven Indian software professionals to the edge.

"Some of them came to me and said when they went to office they found severance pay packet being laid out on the table. Others fear they will get only Rs 5,000 in place of the Rs 150,000 they were earning in their last job," Chandrashekar said.

"So, their prestige is lost among their friends. People laugh at them. Many of them do not have skills to cope up with this kind of stress. In other cases, they cannot keep pace with competition from juniors and peers," he said.

Doctors said the software professionals worked late hours and to strict deadlines which meant they were burning themselves out at a young age.

"Most of them are between 24 and 30 years of age," said psychiatrist R Srinivas, who has worked at Bangalore's St John's Hospital's psychiatry department for the past
18 years.

"They work for very long hours alone in a cubicle. When they travel abroad they have to cope up with a new culture. The suffering is more when despite all this there is a fear of being pink-slipped," Srinivas said.

According to market intelligence company International Data Corp, the global information technology industry suffered its worst patch ever in 2002, slumping 2.3 percent.

"Most of the cases coming to our hospital are burn-out cases. But the number of stress-related cases are also rising steadily," Srinivas said.

While some of the stressed-out Bangalore software engineers visit hospitals, many prefer to go in for self-help counselling groups in the city.

Ali Khwaja, director of Helping Hand, a voluntary counselling group, said family members were also joining in to help their stressed relatives.

"Roughly three software engineers are being counselled every day here. A year ago we would have one every three or four days."

"There are a lot of family members especially spouses, girlfriends and fathers coming in for counselling also," Khwaja said.

The lifestyle of software engineers contributes to their stress levels, doctors said. "They are earning too much too early. Being in a group which is comprising of young people without proper responsibility or projecting they have no responsibility is a disadvantage," Khwaja said.

He said there was an outward show of "false freedom and bravado" by software professionals who live life on a fast lane.

"Costly cars, latest mobile phones, brand new apartments and a fat bank balance are taken as symbols of prosperity. When one adds a fragile ego to that list, we can clearly see they are caught up in a strange environment," Khwaja said.

"It is a very materialistic world out there," he said.

Hospices: Are they necessary in India?

Hospices: Are they necessary in India?
By Dr. Manjula Krishnaswamy M.S
(Honorary Medical Director-Jeevodaya)
Posted December 13th 2002 ( Messag 219 )

The hospice movement was obviously started by people who saw with their hearts, people, who not only saw, but, who reacted to the plight of these unfortunate people by reaching out to help them, as they limped along slowly and painfully, to finish the last lap of their lives for, finish, it, they must!

The hospice, a home away from home for terminally ill patients, is said to have originated in France several years' back and is a very popular concept in the western world. In England alone, a country which is smaller in area and population to many of our Indian states, there are around 200 hospices. Of late, however, they are steering away from hospice and moving towards home care. This is quite understandable, as these countries have developed an excellent health care system. With a manageable population, better socio-economic standards and higher literary background, a patient can very well be managed at home, if health care is delivered at his doorstep as it is done in these countries. This is as it should be, for there can be no place like home.

In India, on the contrary as in most third world countries, the panorama is entirely different and in no way comparable to the west. The hospice movement, or for that matter palliative care itself is still in its infancy in India. The first hospice "Shanti Avedna" was started in Mumbai in 1988. "Jeevodaya" the second hospice in India and the first of its kind in South India was registered in Chennai in 1990 and started inpatient care in 1995.

It is true that the family structure in India is such that the responsibility of looking after a patient rests with the family, but, to generalise and to assume that every patient has a loving family, caring for him or for that matter to assume that every patient has a family at all is to deceive ourselves.

We have studied the types of patients and the reasons for admission to our hospice and are convinced, more than ever, that there is scope to start many such hospices all over the country.


Any one familiar with India will not question the existence of destitutes or the life they are forced to lead - their plight gets compounded when they are struck with a disease that cripples them so much that they are unable to fend for themselves.

Mrs. Sakunthala (name changed) was picked up by the police from the platform and admitted in a Govt. hospital, where we found her on the floor, near the toilet with not a yard of clothing on her. She had a massive fungating tumor of her breast, crawling with maggots - no one wanted to go anywhere near her. We had her transferred to the hospice where she was cleaned, clothed and made to look like what she was meant to be - a human being. She died peacefully in the hospice after a couple of days, surrounded by people who cared for her. The last rites were done by the hospice.

She is one of the many destitute cancer patients, whom we picked up on receiving information, some from the roadsides and some from the hospitals. Many others are brought to us by social workers. These patients constitute only a miniscule of the destitute population scattered all over the country and - if we do not care who cares?


Many patients are abandoned by their families, for reasons, that may be convincing in some, perhaps not others but still the fact remains that they have nowhere to go.

1. Poverty

Three hundred million Indians now live below the poverty line. There is an eternal struggle for existence, a scramble for the next meal. When a healthy person has to struggle to survive, a sick person does not stand a chance. The family transfers the patient to a government hospital, give a false address and then do the disappearing act.

Miss Banu (name changed) was a 14-year-old who had Ewing Sarcoma of her leg. She was one of five motherless children who had a drunkard for a father, who used her sickness to make her beg on the streets. When she became very sick, he admitted her in a Govt. Hospital. The child underwent an amputation of her leg, but when the time came for her discharge, the father was nowhere to be found. Efforts to trace her family with the help of local police were of no avail - she was transferred to the hospice, where she spent the rest of her days in as much peace and comfort as on can get under such circumstances.

2. Lack of living spaces

Often large families live in small spaces - huts or single rooms - and to have a patient with foul smelling wounds would be near impossible. The neighbors too start complaining, hence out of compulsion, these patients ate either driven out or abandoned in hospitals.

Mrs. Radha (name changed) belonged to the upper middle class and she had a loving family - husband, son and daughter who doted on her. When she developed cancer of the breast, the family gave her the best care, surgery, RT and CT in the so-called five star hospitals, but inspite of treatment, the disease progressed. When we saw her she was in a grossly advanced stage with frank gangrene of her arm and chest wall with pus pouring from everywhere. At that stage none of the private hospitals or nursing homes were prepared to take her in - and the neighbors (the family was living in an apartment) started objecting to the smell emanating from her room. The family were desperate for help - and that was when Jeevodaya stepped in.

* Abandoned by spouses

Sad is the story of young women developing breast or cervical cancer. This is a good reason for her husband to forget her and turn elsewhere. Not that wives do not desert their husbands - many a time the wife runs away to her parents home, but the usual story is of the wife having to seek employment, often doing menial work to feed and clothe her children, leaving her with little time to look after her husband (if she does come to see him she often gets beaten up by the husband because he suspects her fidelity!)

* Widows and spinsters

Widows and spinsters are a deprived lot - especially the latter as no one feels morally obliged to look after them.

Miss Parvathy (name changed) was a teacher in school. As long as she was earning and contributing to the family, she was a welcome member in her brother's house. However when she became bed ridden with cancer of the breast her brother insisted that his other sister should take turns to look after her and sent her there - where she was politely refused entry. Heart broken she found her way to the hospice.


1. Large foul smelling wounds:
Mrs. Kanthi (name changed) a patient with cancer of the breast complained that she felt nauseated all the time and could not eat - reason? She could not tolerate the smell emanating from her wound "if I myself cannot tolerate the smell how can I expect others to come anywhere near me" she mourned pitiably.

2. Disfiguring lesions of the head and the neck:
Malignancies of the head and the neck make the patient look grotesque. With high prevalence of oral cancer - thanks to tobacco - some patients have half their faces missing. Adults and children alike dread to go near them. Unfortunately these patients have to bear the burden for long periods because these are slow growing tumors.

Miss Barthy aged 20 had a maxillary antral growth and her face was so distorted that even the doctors found it difficult to face her. She was a recluse in the house, confined to her room where no one except her parents would go. She felt so depressed that she stopped eating and was starving herself to death. It was at this stage that her parents brought her to the hospice. With all the love, care, and affection, she received there, she overcame her depression and became her normal self. She spent the remaining of her days in the hospice.

3. Ignorance:

4. Ignorance born of illiteracy - it is estimated that India has the highest illiterate population in the world - approximately 500 million. To them cancer is a contagious disease and patients are kept in isolation - the usual story is of the daughter-in-law refusing to let her child go anywhere near a sick grand parent - who yearns for children's company. Superstition:

Superstition is in the bone of every Indian, educated or uneducated - only the degree varies. Hence it is not surprising that for some at least, cancer is a curse of the God and the patient must be left alone to serve his karma.


1. Needing Pain Relief: Pain as we know is all pervading problem of cancer. The medical practitioners are largely ignorant of the use of oral morphine or, even if they did know, there is no access to the drug, unless it is in a specialised centre like a hospice. This is the current picture, one, which has to be rapidly changed, if not, thousands of cancer patients will continue to live and die in pain.

2. Wounds Needing Repeated Dressing:

3. Some wounds are large with copious discharge and need to be dressed five or six times a day. This is not feasible in home or even hospital. Bedridden, paraplegic patients and bedsores:

4. Bedridden paraplegic patients with bedsores are always a challenge to the nursing profession. An institution like Jeevodaya alone can provide round the clock facilities like waterbeds, dressing, and individualised nursing care. Patients with VVF & RVF (Vesico-Vaginal & Recto-Vaginal Fistulas)

5. : Patients with VVF and RVF are usually due to cancer cervix - the constant dribbling of urine and leaking of motion can be acutely embarrassing to the patient in the home environment and also difficult to manage. Ostomy care:

6. Patients with ostomies generally are too weak to look after themselves and need somebody to help manage their ostomies. It is true that the caretaker can be trained, but for most patients, a caretaker, who cares is hard to come by. Patients needing special nutrition:

Some patients are on tube feeds or ostomy feeds. They need a nutritious diet to keep them going. The poor usually feed them with a dilute Kanji (porridge) or half-milk, half-water diet - these patients die of inanition rather than their disease.


India is a country of contradictions. The metropolitan cities boast of state of the art medical care - available to the wealthy few. The majority of the urban poor have to rely on the Government run hospitals, which are overcrowded, and busting at the seams. Palliative care is the least of their priorities. It is natural that they should devote their limited resources to patients who can be cured. There is lopsided concentration of doctors in the cities, but to see them one needs money and in any case the average medical practitioner is not aware of palliative care, for it was not taught to him in his medical school!

In the rural areas the doctors and hospitals are few and far between. The vast distances and poor transportation facilities prevent these patients from getting medical relief and let us not forget - India still lives in her villages.

All said and done, it is true that Hospice alone is not the answer for advanced cancer patients. It is only one of the modes of rendering palliative care, along with home care, hospital based palliative care units or out patients' centers. All these must go hand in hand and compliment each other for - there is a place for everything and everything in its place!

The common accusation against the hospice is - too much is being spent on too few. But we must also remember, quantity by itself cannot be a virtue, and quality often matters. Though India is described as land of poor - there is no dearth of the rich. If the latter's eyes and heart can be opened to the plight of their unfortunate brethren, I am confident and I speak out of experience - they are only too willing to come forward to help such projects in cash and kind. I am also of the firm belief that such projects should be the collective responsibility of the society - not always expecting the government to do it for us.

And speaking of too few - there is this story of the Starfish.

One little girl was frantically throwing the starfish that were washed ashore back into the sea. When her mother asked what she was doing she replied that she was saving the life of the starfish by putting them back into the sea. Her mother exclaimed, "look, there are thousands of them. By putting back a few how is it going to matter?"

The little girl held the starfish in her hand and said, "it matters to this one" as she gently threw it back into the sea!"

( PS: Dr.Manjula Krishnaswamy is my Younger sister - Rambo )

IITs to get funds only if 50% spent on research

IITs to get funds only if 50% spent on research

Posted by Kalyanasundaram, IITM 1969
December 9th 2002 9Message 215 )


NEW DELHI: The government has taken the first step towards introducing a golden mean formula in supporting higher education by linking productivity to performance.

Announcing this the minister for human resource development Dr Murli Manohar Joshi said that in future the Indian Institutes of Technology would receive funds from the HRD ministry only if 50% of these are spent on research projects.

"Innovation is only possible if we invented technologies. Improving on something borrowed from abroad will not serve the same purpose,'' Joshi said.

The state of technical education has been a cause of concern for the government and educational institutes for some time now.

pecifically it was the state of research and development that has been the source of worry. It was felt that while the government was spending money in this sector the returns were not commensurate to the investment.

The department of education recognises that while the government can withdraw from the business of running hotels, it cannot withdraw completely from the field of education. World over providing education remains one of the government's primary responsibility.

Now the government move seeks to evolve a rationale for funding education, especially higher technical education. One that balances budget and responsibility.

The proposed funding pattern is the performance formula based funding. For disbursement of non plan funds, it proposed that weightage be given to the number of students.

There is no reason why an IIT that has not tried to improve on student intake should receive the same amount as an IIT where student intake has gone up.

The idea is not to push IITs on a student recruitment drive, but to ensure that per student expenditure does not fall to a level where efficiency and productivity are affected.

Another factor that will determine productivity is the quality and quntum of post-graduate research. While generic research will also be given weightage, it will be far less than that given to cutting edge work. The proposed weightage for generic research is 5%.

As regards plan funds, that will be decided on the basis of future plans. Another criterion for determining the level of funding, would be the ability of the IIT to generate funds on its own through industry involvement. This would also help promote cutting edge research and development.

At present there are 5108 technical institutes that have been approved by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE). Each year 7,44,072 students take admission to these institutes.

While the government and AICTE were focusing on improving the quality of education in these institutes, it has urged the AICTE to pay attention to emerging areas such as biotechnology and nanotechnology.

Are IITians Elite & Truly Educated???? By Rambo

Are IITians Elite & Truly Educated???? By Rambo
8th December 2002 ( Message 214 )

Hi IITians

In the last three days I have sent the flyer for the Charity show to about 32 yahoo eGroups for IIT alumni and have had nil response and no one has even bothered to sign the guest book, leave alone making a committment to send a few bucks. We are supposed to be the "Elite" and the "Best of the Best". If we consider ourselves a true sample of the Indian population (which we are not) you will understand why India will never ever progress or change for the better. The people of the country make a nation, it is the people that are responsible for success or failure of any organisation for that matter

If China is improving the standards of living and business by leaps and bounds it is because of the culture of the people and their committment to succeed. Most reataurant owners start off as an illegal dish washer's. Give him five years, he has his own house and BMW and owns his own restaurant. Once they have made it big they are the most generous lot.

In Sydney we Indians have struggeld for seventeen years to raise funds to build a Venkateswara Temple which is still half finished. Over night there appears a Buddhist temple in Woolongong where millions have been spent. What a beautiful place. It fills your heart with Joy and Peace and above all it is so clean that one could eat off the marble floors. I cannot say this about my temple of worship. Not only that the committee members come to blows at a general body meeting and police are called in and next day they make head lines. We Indians are so divided with our prejudices of race colour and creed. Yet we arm chair pundits sit there and criticise Bill Gates for donating $100 million to fight AIDS in India. We try to find motives behind his generosiity..all this stuff about Linux and open platform or what ever..........

I am not crticising every one but the genral tendency is to spend a life time looking after one self and family. Some may include their friends in the inner circle....

We are happy to just keep our houses clean inside but just as happy to sweep all the dirt on to the street. It is not uncommon to be spat upon from a bus if you are walking on the pavement where you have to step around dead snakes (you know what I mean). Yet the man who spat is educated with a lap top on his lap pretending that he did not do it.....Indians are for ever trying to break rules and bribe any one and every one to get what ever they want from telephones to train tickets.

In the short span of three months I have found a handful of people in the IIT egroups who are committed to improve the lot in India. I did not know them before July this year.

We have members like Ravi Challu, Daljit Dave Singh, Praveer Gupta, Suhas.V, Shyam Raghunandan, Deshpande, Narayanamurthy, Ashok Jhun Jhunwala, Abhay Bhushan, B.K.Syngal, Ram Krishnan, Pradip, Leo Jayaprakash and a few more who are committed to doing something about improving the lot of IITians and Indians in general. The rest just sit and complain..........

These are some of the responses that I have received so far in IIT Global, INTERIIT and IIT-Global-Jobsearch as a moderator, which ares so very heartening that I have saved them under "Quotable Quotes" :

* Hey Unsubscribe me immediately. This is supposed to be a tech group and do not like spam about some charity
* I am not an IITian but am a member of this group. Is this all you elite IITians are capable off....???
* Hey I am going to report you to the right authorities and close you down
* Your group is going to sink under its own weight......
* Your group is illegitimate and does not have approval from authorities
* you are defragmenting other serious efforts to unite IITians
* stop this friday inspiration rubbish. Are you an evangelist ??
* So many IITians are turning off their PC's because of your messages , so please take my advice and close it down
* Ram what are you trying to achieve, just close shop my friend
* hey you are the moderator and should know how to stop SPAM....
* Your Mangalore express story, I am sure you meant Rs 180. You could not have spent Rs 1800.(sad)
* I know you are trying to help us find jobs. But you should realise there are so many useless ads that are not relevent to me. Can you not classify them ???
* I am happy you are sending all these job ads, but they are too many
* and the list goes on.
* I must add out of 1500 members there was just one fellow who took it upon himself to help stop the SPAM to our group. Ravi mate you are a champion too.

Are we not a classy bunch of ELITE IITians ??
I am beginning to detest this word for some reason

I have not had one offer to help the Charity Night, despite it being an all IITIAN effort. There are 1500 hundred members in this Elite group. Do you think these members can donate just $10 each for a worthy cause ??? no no no
Charity is for the white man............

Hey leave alone money, if there was some kindness in your hearts I am sure you could write a few words in the guest book. Is that too much to ask ??

When I go to India, my well to do friends will not hesitate to spend Rs 8000 for drinks and dinner at Taj or Chola or Connemara Hotesl in Madras.....yet the same people when we walk out and I give a poor starved woman with an undernourished baby RS 100 out of my wallet, I get a sermon " You fellows go abroad and come to India for holidays and throw your money around and really spoil these beggars. Beg your pardon?? Did I hear it correct ??? My own batchmates who are supposed to be hosting this show have not come forward to help as foot soldiers....Love to, but tooooo busy and have dead lines to meet....otherwise I surely will

I did not get educated at IIT.......
I learnt some skills for survival perhaps.

My true education came from my mum and dad who taught me the value of life.
My education came from being a Boy scout at School
My education came from St.Bedes High School where I studied moral science
My education came from associating with the poor and the needy.
My true Inner Happiness also comes from the same sources.
My inspiration came from the mosque across from my house where I visited the mullah every saturday morning as a kid
My inspirations came from my visit to the Gurudwara where I went aroud singing "Satyanam satyanam satyanam Ji, Vaya guru vaya guru vaya guruji" May be I just did it for the halva at the end who knows ??
My inspiration comes from Sri RamaKrishna Sai Baba
My strength comes from Lord Hanuman.
I am non descript human being. Telugu chap, born a kalapani, settled in madras, married to a Bengali and now above all an Aussie/Indian at heart

Now here is my chat with an American lady Kristy O'Donnell. I have never met ever. She is some one who has survived a Brain stem stroke and is condemned to a wheel chair for life and cannot even speak properly. Have a look at the compassion in her noble heart. This is what life and living is all about. Now I am sure I will get emails suggesting I stop giving sermons and generalising. Just prove me wrong and that will be fine...... I am trying to raise just $100,000 so help me if you can and I will take back everything I have doled out here..

Please note "LOL" is laughing out Loud and not "Lots of Love" as Indians think it is
(I got into trouble with a friends wife once as she misunderstood me)

Ramboaus: I agree, I am strange that way and I do such crazy things.
Ramboaus: hey did you read about my charity night?
Kristi O'Donnell: no
Kristi O'Donnell: what?
Ramboaus: Oh I posted it to your group. I am hosting a charity show in India along with my class mates of 33 years ago to raise funds for terminally ill cancer patients in India
Kristi O'Donnell: oh that's right duh
Ramboaus: have a read of this
Ramboaus: Subject: URL-Lp-Unplugged Charity
Many friends have written saying thay have had problems opening the Flyer for the Charity show and those with yahoo and hot mail addresses have got all clip art attachments "detached". Thanks for your feed back. The web site for the Charity show is now pretty much ready and is getting updated every day. We will be including lists of all donors however small to say "Thank You". I agree that majority of us are foot soldiers battling for survival. I am not going to ask anyone to dig deep to find anything . I am hoping a large number of people world wide would drop small insignificant amounts like $10. That is all I ask. If you have a bigger wallet and an even bigger heart, do make a generous contribuiton "Little drops make and ocean."
Ramboaus: URL for Charity show:
Please spare a few minutes to sign the Guest book
URL for Jeevodaya-Hospice for Terminally ill
Please do not forget to pass this on to as many people as you can think off.
Kristi O'Donnell: ok will do
Ramboaus: can you please sign my guest book and ask all your friends if they would
consider just donating $ 10 each ?
Ramboaus: look at my creation LP-Unplugged, did that in seven hours....LOL
Kristi O'Donnell: hey i'm going to send this to the "Today Show" here okKristi O'Donnell: Oprah too
Ramboaus: you are a true champ make that two pent houses one for Amanda too LOL
Kristi O'Donnell: and the american cancer society
Kristi O'Donnell: lol
Kristi O'Donnell: ah this is easy stuff
Ramboaus: you are a God send in my life to further my dreams. God bless
Ramboaus: even if every one sends one dollar it will make a big difference
Kristi O'Donnell: we have many large corporations here you can get much $$ from
Kristi O'Donnell: oh yes i know
Ramboaus: I will be eternally grateful to you for your help
Kristi O'Donnell: no problem
Ramboaus: well only you can help
Ramboaus: do you want me to include your name to the organisation committeee?
Kristi O'Donnell: deb and i are both experienced at writing official business letters and i have a fax machine
Kristi O'Donnell: i don't want any recognition
Kristi O'Donnell: just want to help those who need help
Ramboaus: please I would like to include your name in the web site
Kristi O'Donnell: if you wish but don't have to
Ramboaus: just to let sponsors and donors know you are genuine about the cause
Ramboaus: representative North America ?
Kristi O'Donnell: i dunno
Ramboaus: can I include your web site details ?
Kristi O'Donnell: sure
Ramboaus: this will go to thousands of people
Ramboaus: cool, you will see the changes within the hour
Kristi O'Donnell: young strokers need to know something like this does exist
Ramboaus: cool I will do that
Ramboaus: believe me God has set me a task to give you some additional purpose to life so you will snap out of depression
Kristi O'Donnell: if you must my pics are on my group page and my stroke was locked in brainstem at 30 on 12-24-99
Ramboaus: so what makes us come for a chat on messenger today?? divine intervention??. do not get me wrong I am not an evangelist and not even a christian
Kristi O'Donnell: i don't believe in organised religion
Kristi O'Donnell: too hypocritical for me
Ramboaus: nor do I
Ramboaus: last night I went to a muslim friends house for a Ramadan feast
Kristi O'Donnell: i'll send you my story
Kristi O'Donnell: cool
Ramboaus: see we are birds of the same feather
Ramboaus: sorry you are a dove and I am a crow LOL
Kristi O'Donnell: flock together, lol
Kristi O'Donnell: i'm something
Ramboaus: that felt funny the crow bit
Ramboaus: doves are beautiful
Kristi O'Donnell: lol
Kristi O'Donnell: this one can't be caged though
Ramboaus: hey kristi I am starving it is 2.00pm now and all I have had is a coffee since morning. mithu is in Delaware in the snow Bye
Kristi O'Donnell: Bye Hon.

Now folks Kristi is a Brain Damaged stroke victim, condemned to a wheel chair for life. For those of you who read last weeks Friday inspiration, are you a potato or an egg or Coffee. I definitely wish to be coffee, what kind of a person are you ????


Article by Sandipan Deb Deputy Editor "Outlook"

Article by Sandipan Deb Deputy Editor "Outlook"
November 28th 2002 ( Message No 189 )

This is supposedly by Sandipan Deb, Deputy Editor of Outlook. He's a B.Tech. from IIT-KGP. Read the article and think about how much of it is true...

From: "Avinash Dhoot"
Date: Thu Nov 28, 2002 3:40pm
Subject: Article from the Editor of Outlook
Contrary to popular belief, the vast majority of IITians do nothing of note in their lives. Indeed, many of them became IITians because their parents told them that's what they should mug their butts off for, and aim to hit the US of A, so that's what they did. They attended classes, took notes, passed exams, took the GRE, applied to a dozen American universities, and disappeared into that country's vast technological underbelly, to reappear only in the matrimonial columns of Indian papers with a dollar salary multiplied diligently by the day's exchange rate. Or they stayed in India,working at unexceptionable jobs, doing reasonably well. In either case, they got beautiful brides (often from rich families) and presumably lived happily ever after, meeting classmates once a month and chatting about their
IIT days, and how Hippo has just changed jobs, and Zap is three rungs away from the top in Cisco Systems. Each of them had intelligence well above the average, and most, exceptional academic tenacity.

A decade and a half out of IIT, I wonder how many of us IITians achieved our potential? How many went to seed in remote dusty townships, tending massive pipelines and drinking in the township club? How many wilfully walked away from their natural talents in favour of safe MNC jobs selling iapers and hire-purchase
schemes? How many, trained to think rationally and without bias, never managed to figure out the nuances of Indian office politics, and were relegated to obscure corridors in huge buildings? How many, obsessed with the American dream, settled
for second-rate US universities, hung in for a green card, and today work at unfulfilling jobs in Idaho?

There's another angle too to this. How many IITians, determined to stay engineers and in India, ignored the siren songs of the USA and the IIMs, and joined Indian industry, only to find that all the technical designs came from abroad, that you couldn't change them even if you knew they were flawed, that all the engineering you got to do was maintenance, and knowing all that, they either settled into ediocrity, or went off to the US or the iims?

What was my IIT education all about? It was about IITians: 400 academically exceptional boys (and 12 girls) on a campus, which, in the case of Kharagpur,
where I went, was far enough from civilisation to have very interesting effects on our coming of age. Many of us were truly extraordinary. There were boys from village schools who were leagues ahead in knowledge of the urban convent-educated type.
There were those who mugged night and day, or simpered at professors from first benches, and there were those who also had a vibrant and busy life outside academics. I've found that the latter did better in life, even in fields like pure research. I also had friends who never needed to study, they had been apparently
born with engineering wisdom in their genes. There were guys who spent most of the semester in a drug haze, but sobered up a few days before the exams, cracked them, and went back to their pharmaceuticals. Others did not have such control. Like Allen Ginsberg, I too saw some of the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness. A few dropped out (I met one of them years later in Shillong, a stridently devout convert to Catholicism, and a lowly government clerk, but he seemed happy),
a few killed themselves. But, most of us survived. I suppose we became tougher, more mature, more knowing, and more aware of our dark sides.

We lived and ate together, and shared our joys and heartbreaks and good times and bad times, in competition and camaraderie. We compared our philosophies and, bit by stumbling bit, developed our value systems. Never were stronger bonds forged between young people. Years from now, if I meet an IIT wingmate on the road, I know we will carry on as if nothing had changed, and nothing actually would have. A couple of years ago, there was a small visual trick on an Outlook cover, which was my idea.
A close IIT friend, whom I had not been in touch with for years, called up from Singapore: "Some other name is mentioned in the cover credits, but it was your idea, right? I know the way you think." No one knows me better than these mates of mine from IIT.

IIT was also a whole insular world in itself,complex and complete, and it sucked us in. As The Chosen, we lived a full life with no necessity of any contact with the outside world. Totally cut off from politics and "the bigger issues", our delights remained in competing fiercely on the field or the stage with other hostels or other colleges. There were few material pleasures. Lifestyles were spartan, the food abysmal. The vast majority of males were totally deprived of female company. The girls lived a strange life-on the one hand, they were hounded by dozens of would-be suitors; on the other, they faced the petulant hostility of the majority which saw them as undeserving of so much adulation and so many free lunches.

When we graduated, we went out into the world with a rare confidence and strong tribal loyalties. The confidence eroded a bit over the years, and we learnt some humility when we discovered non-IITians as smart as we were, and also people who could outwit us because they were intelligent in a different way-in a sly political way-an acumen we had not developed in our isolated environment which, above all, inculcated a sense of fairness and a respect for ability. We came to terms with a world that compared poorly with our beloved campus, and some of us even went ahead and conquered it. Others didn't do well, but knew that the ties between them and the masters-of-the-universe classmates would never change. They were ties born of the pride of being an IITian.

That pride would never diminish.
It never can.


Posted by Rakesh Vajpai
November 27th 2002 ( Message 185 )

Japanese save a lot. They do not spend much. Also Japan exports far more than it imports. Has an annual trade surplus of over $100 billions, that is Rs.5 lakh crores. Yet Japanese economy is considered weak, even collapsing.

Americans spend, save little. Also US imports more than it exports. Has an annual trade deficit of over $400 billion, that is over Rs. 20 lakh crores. Yet, the American economy is considered strong and trusted to get stronger. Indeed a contrast.

But where from do Americans get money to spend? They borrow from Japan, China and even India. Virtually others save for US to spend. Global savings are mostly invested in US, in dollars. India itself keeps its foreign currency assets of over $50 billions in US securities. China has sunk over $160 billion in US securities.
Japan's stakes in US securities is in trillions.

Result. The US has taken over $5 trillion from the world. Want to know it in rupees? Rs. 2,50,000 crore crores! So, as the world saves for US, Americans spend freely. Today, to keep the US consumption going, that is for the US economy to work, other countries have to remit $180 billion every quarter, that is $2 billion a day, to the
US! Otherwise the US economy would go for a six. So will the global economy. The result will be no different if US consumers begin consuming less. A Chinese economist asked a neat question. Who has invested more, US in China, or China in US?

The US has invested in China less than half of what China has invested in US. The same is the case with us. We have invested in US over $50 billion.

But the US has invested less than $20 billion in India.

Why the world is after US? The secret lies in the American spend, in that they hardly save. In fact they use their credit cards to spend their future income. That the US spends is what makes it attractive to export to the US.

So, US imports more than what it exports year after year. The result. The world is dependent on US consumption for its growth. By its deepening culture of consumption, the US has habituated the world to feed on US consumption. But as the US needs money to finance its consumption, the world provides the money. It's like a shopkeeper providing the money to a customer so that the customer keeps buying from the shop. The customer will not buy, the shop won't have business, unless the shopkeeper funds him.

The US is like the lucky customer.

And the world is like the helpless shopkeeper financier. Who is America's biggest shopkeeper financier? Japan. Yet it is Japan which is regarded as weak. Modern economists complain that Japanese do not spend, so they do not grow. To force the Japanese to spend, the Japanese government exerted itself. Reduced the savings rates, even charged the savers. Even then the Japanese did not spend. Their traditional postal savings alone is over $1.2 billion that is. Rs.60 lakh crores, about three times the GDP of India. Thus, savings, far from being the strength of Japan, has become its pain.

What is the lesson? That is, a nation cannot grow unless the people spend, not save. Not just spend, but borrow and spend. Dr.Jagdish Bhagwati, the famous Indian-born economist in the US, told Dr. Manmohan Singh that Indians wastefully save. Ask them to spend, he said. On imported cars and, seriously, even on cosmetics! This, he counselled, will put India on a growth curve. But like Japanese we too are not obliging. Modernists may not, but one who has read the Mahabharatha will, know. A Rishi by name Charuvaka gave the same advice when Pandavas were around, which modern
economists are giving today. He told the people to spend and be happy, if need be by borrowing. No need to repay, if you cannot, he counselled. No sin would attach, he assured. Fortunately his advice was rejected by us thousands of years back. That is why perhaps we are alive as a nation. Our old companions are in archives today. Now we have the very same advice. That is saving as sin, and spending as virtue.

This is central to neo-economics. Caution. Before you follow these neo-Charuvakas, get some fools to save so that you can borrow from them and spend, after you exhaust your savings. This is what US has successfully done in last two decades.

Going Abroad Vs. Staying in India! By Ramkumar IITM M Tech

Going Abroad Vs. Staying in India! By Ramkumar IITM M Tech
25th November 2002 ( Message 181

This passionate letter from Ram Kumar reminds me of Raj Kapoor singing
"AAh Aab Lout ke Chaley" in "Jhis Desh Mein Ganga Behti Hai".

"Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani Doston"

Going Abroad Vs. Staying in India!

In the seventies and eighties, going abroad was a very attractive option for IITians. The reasons were evident-it was very easy to get aid; there were good prospects for employment and, most importantly, there was job satisfaction. Indian industry was conservative, salaries were low and jobs were few. What has happened in the nineties? The US has been hit by recession. People who finish their M.S. face unemployment and are forced to choose between a programmer's job and doing a Ph.D, a five-year commitment at the end of which you can't even be sure of a teaching job (A typical Ad. for Asst. Professor's job attracts 350 applicants from Ph.D. holders).

So ask yourselves: ' What do you want to be in life?... Five years hence..., Ten years hence,.... and in your mid-forties... If you have romantic ideas of becoming a researcher, I have this to point out, In thirty years of 'manpower export' to the US,
I am yet to hear of a single IITian stud in any field of engineering. WHY? Every IITian who goes to the US discovers, sooner or later ,that one cannot progress in an organisation beyond a stage without an MBA . One discovers that there is more
money in Wall Street than in Silicon Valley.

And so, the tragic ending to the story is that many a brilliant brain has been lost to lure of the lucre. If money is what ultimately matters you can get it by going to the IIMs (multinationals pay salaries in lakhs) or to software jobs (dumb thing to do but, at least, you make a lot of money and escape gheraos and sweat and toil in the factories for a pittance of a salary). Exceptions exist for a few branches of specialization. Consult your friends in the US for more information on these.
For a majority of specializations, what has been said is the bitter truth.

Finally the question that comes to the mind is-' Who should go abroad?' If you are seriously committed to hi-funda research then, depending on your field, you may still have opportunities. A warning: Do not fall for these fields, which, dole out aids by the dozen. It is quite possible that you are being lured because the Native American is too smart to step into a potential career doom.

Another question that needs to be answered is: 'What has changed in India?' Economic liberalization, competitive business, growing awareness of the need to be competitive at a global level, growing importance of manufacturing management (many consulting firms are picking up Engineer-MBA's for such jobs) and higher
salaries for jobs are just a few facets in which India is changing. A typical 21-year-old IITian simply cannot visualise life in the mid-forties. I hear that people want to return to India, particularly if they have teenaged daughters - that is
when the difference in culture and values hits you. You will not understand unless you actually talk to people in this age group.

So think..., think beyond the immediate goals of affluence, hi-tech life, spicy surroundings, instant telephone connections, multi channel televisions... think beyond affluent universities, hi-funda facilities, dream world libraries and hi-tech research. At 45, you cannot,or rather, should not feel empty even after you
get all this. Nobody tells you that there is a glass ceiling beyond which you cannot rise in your profession. Nobody tells you that the choice is often between second-class citizenship,first class standard of living in the USA and first class
citizenship, second-class standard of living in India. Nobody tells you that it feels awfully lonely out there or that many of them feel within months of reaching here that the massive investment of time and money on 'apping' was perhaps not worth

Do you now that much of teaching in the US universities is done by graduate teaching assistants and by Ph.D. students and not by the Profs.? Do you know that a few research supervisors may even stoop to the extent of publishing your research work in their name with your name deleted? Remember, you need a certain level of maturity to think of your priorities-not in today's context but in the context of two decades hence.

Remember your mom and dad are desperate to send you abroad because they belong to a society which thinks that anything from the land of the white man must be superior. Remember you do not have to go abroad simply because your friends did so, your cousins did so or because your parents want you to do so.

Go, if the dirt and squalor of India repels you, Go, if you want to do nothing about it, Go, if the corruption and politics make you puke, And if you do not want to become another T.N.Seshan Go, if you think your future is doomed because of the reservation policy in the country, turning a blind eye to the fact that no
upper middle class kid is doing menial labour.

TAIL PIECE: Go to the US if you are despo. Xerox this article, seal it in a cover and take it with you. Open it on Jan 1st 2006 and send us your feedback.


Ramkumar. R, M.Tech (Civil)
room no 335
Krishna Hostel
IIT Madras - 600 036
Ph: 044-257 8909, 257 9079