When the common man is being sqeezed by merchants (HOW CAN WE LIVE WITHOUT RICE AND SALT?), the Finance Minister has decided to finish him off. How else can we explain the increase in excise duty on petrol and diesel?

The plea that there is no other alternative is baseless. I suggest some measures to save money:

1) Cut defence spending by postponing all procurements for one year. Nothing will happen in one year.

2) Shelve the moon mission Chandrayan. It is like a middle class baboo buying a helicoptor. We learn nothing new about the moon.

3) Withdraw from Commonwealth Games.

All parties, including Congress allies like Trinamool congress, RJD, DMK etc have opposed the move to increse the cost of oil. Please see the writing on the wall and withdrw this antipeople move.



Well begun, half done.

It is good that both sides agree , talks should continue. There is no other alternative. Do not mind what they say to the press. That is for public consumption, to satisfy hard liners on both sides. 

Let us be optimistic !


It is something enigmatic, the way we are all moved by music. Even the cows would listen, when Krishna plays his flute. For the women of his village the sound is irresistible.

In all Indian movies, songs are their essence.

Long ago, when I was a child, it was rarely that we had a chance to hear a film songs. Dillagi, a Hindi film starring Suraiya and Sham was shown at Jose theatre at Trichur. We went to see it, though none of us knew a single word of Hindi. Thum mera chand me teri chandni – what a lovely song!

Only the town people had the radio. The first time a box was brought to our home at Kottical, for playing gramophone records, is still fresh in my memory. Even now as a very old man, music touches my heart. Has any one tried to play instrumental music before a dying man?

African men are good singers. They do well in sports and athletics. Is there any connection between the two?

It is my wish to have a collection of old film songs, Hindi and Malayalam. I have no patience for the classical variety.


Rajasthan Atomic Power Project (RAPP) is situated in forest land. The permanent township built on the hill, dominating the whole landscape, is full of monkeys. They silently move from one tree to another, eating the leaves and is normally ignored by the people.

One day, early in the morning, I was walking towards the Project Guest House, which was at the summit of the hill. Suddenly I became aware of the presence of a monkey just behind me and I stopped instinctively. Soon, one by one, a large number of monkeys collected on all sides, blocking my way. I was truly scared. I stood still quite for some time. Then their leader jumped up, on to the nearest tree and the whole troop followed his example. There was pin drop silence during those few minutes when my heart beat increased perceptibly.

An engineer had developed a vegetable garden in his plot in his bungalow. One day, he saw a monkey plucking tomatoes and he threw a stone to drive it away. Soon, some enraged monkeys came near and fearing further attack, he foolishly shot at them, killing one. It became a big issue, because he had committed an offense under the Forest Act.

As Hanuman is venerated by Hindus, the engineer had to incur the wrath of the residents. Somehow, the whole incident was hushed up.

In Delhi, which has the largest forest area in any city in the world, we are familiar with the monkey menace. Sometimes, they enter the house and open the fridge, taking away whatever came into their hands


Today’s Malayalam paper has an interesting story to tell. This year, the above institution celebrates its centenery.

It was established by P.T.Kuriakose, a local Samskrutha scholar, for popularising this language among non-brahmans. Normally, christians are not interested in Samskrutham. So I wish to record my admiration for this unique personality.

In those days, study of Samskrutham was restricted to upper caste Hindus.

There were few schools exlusively for this ancient language of Aryans, though Samskrutham was an optional subject in most schools. The Samskrutham teacher, normally not aquanted with modern education, was an object of ridicule. No one studies it seriously.

In this context, the pioneering efforts of Kuriakose is commendable.


The bees make honey for us. The tribal people collect it and sell it to outsiders.

It is a very good tonic. Arabs use it regularly, but in India it is ignored.

It is unfortunate. Those who do not eat eggs, can bank on honey for nutrition. Avoid multivitamin tablets.

In Russia, honey collection and bee keeping is an industry, involving a number of people.


These days the bright moon is at the top of the sky, immediately after sunset.

Just step out of the house and I am immersed it the milky glow. It is so soothing.

I like to sit anywhere, enjoying the  the nectary rays of the Chanda-mama, as children lovingly call this mysterious heavenly body ! Amruta-kiranan is another word for this God of love.

A few tufts of clouds flit slowly across the sky. Many bright stars are seen , giving company to their queen.

It is so calm and quiet ….