Friday, 23 June 2017

Cucumber & tears- An insider's guide to fitness

(Article written exclusively for India Today- Click Here)

Like many mortals, this year, I too decided to take the plunge into the world of fitness. Not so long ago, manoeuvring the blanket using only my legs to reach a cosy position pretty much represented the pinnacle of human fitness for me. However, like most things in life, I was wrong about this one too.
The universe had conspired against me. My doctor and family members all held the opinion that diet control and weight loss were the need of the hour.
One evening, when my roommate and I were shopping for groceries and simultaneously debating which oat cereal looked more disappointing, he happened to utter the damned B-word.
Yes, you read it right: brown rice. A Punjabi aunty happened to be eavesdropping over our conversation and thought it her moral responsibility to show two misled obese millennials the path towards enlightenment aka brown rice.
Besides, she also effortlessly rattled away about some brown rice recipes. Call it inherent Punjabi love, but had we stood there with the same hopeless looks in our eyes for a minute more, she would have indeed called us for dinner and, later, maybe adopted us too.
After much delay, I finally joined the gym. I distinctly remember the first day at the gym where my trainer handed me a barbell stick without any weights on it. Call it my innocence, but I gave it back candidly, saying, “I am not into body building” just like one would say, “I am into biographies not fiction.”
It earned me a blank stare from my trainer, who instructed me to do shoulder exercises using the stick. It does feel humiliating to practise with a stick when people around you are weightlifting. Nonetheless, there is always a silver lining you know. At least my trainer didn’t tell me to do a pole dance for the collective amusement of the other gym members.
Which, come to think of it, is not a bad idea: to punish people who don’t lose weight in a few months, with a compulsory once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to pole dance to glory. I never thought I would ever say this, but the gym is a great place indeed for the sheer assortment of fellow human species you get to witness.
For example, one of the guys at the gym who would easily qualify as the love child of Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Great Khali, has this unique quality of shouting "finish" after every exercise set, just that he yells it out in Dolby Digital surround sound so the whole gym knows the progress he has made.
Call it inferiority complex, but I don’t understand why only people doing body building get the privilege of grunting.
An egalitarian society is one where everyone gets equal rights to grunt in the gym even if you are trudging along on the treadmill at speed level two. No offence. #MakeIndiaGruntAgain

It didn’t take me long enough to understand the core responsibility of trainers in this gym ecosystem:
a) Giving undivided attention only to women.
b) Going up to the mirror and smiling while staring at your biceps precisely every 15 minutes.

Now don’t get me wrong. Self-adulation is a good thing, especially if you have done something great in your life.
You know like giving your country independence from foreign rule or maybe eradicating apartheid in South Africa. However, narcissism for simply lifting dumbbells for a long time doesn’t make sense.
Once you get into the fitness mode, things change indeed. Deep within, I feel I am cheating my neighbourhood snack vendor as my daily evening visits have been converted to fortnightly ones.
When he asks where I have been all these days, I need to come up with impromptu excuses like travelling, work pressure et al. And what do I get in return after living this dual life — cucumber, carrots and broccoli.
Till we meet again, I am off to pen my first novel “The 7 habits of highly effective procrastinators”.

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Suspect Thy Neighbour,LoveThy Taxman

(Article written exclusively for India Today - Click Here)

Yesterday was a historic day indeed. No, Salman Khan didn’t mow down extraterrestrials with his car to complete his bucket list. But rather the GST (Goods and service tax) bill was finally passed by the Indian parliament after a mere 16 years of debate. But don’t blame us we had more juicy topics to debate about during this period like people shouting anti-national slogans, then people not shouting our favourite national slogans etc. It’s been a fun ride in short.

So recently in my building society we had a session by the income tax department who were simply following the directives of Mr Modi asking the income tax department to have a friendly approach towards citizens.Presumably to change their response from “oh! Shit, It’s the tax guys. Darling is your diamond jewellery hidden under the commode or in our Labrador’s stomach?”  to “Oh wow it’s the friendly tax guys again. Darling, why don’t you make some hot pakodas while I squeeze out some fresh watermelon juice for them as they wipe away our net worth”. Sources tell me that a few rounds of bingo were played too with society members. Just that the proud winners walked away with complimentary tax raids by the officials.

Now the GST tax system once implemented is supposed to unify multiple taxes and make indirect taxes a lot more convenient. This is where the government has spoiled all the fun. Until now with a tricky tax structure in place at least there was some incentive to learn the tax system well and accordingly hunt for loopholes within it to make a quick buck.

So now you expect us to make an honest living while the government conveniently robs us from the adrenaline rush we used to get by breaking the system for our personal gains. This is simply unfair.
Analysts have predicted that once the GST is in place, many things will get cheaper which will boost consumption and consequently increase our GDP. So basically life will soon be an unending parade of joy and just when you reach your deathbed and are reminiscing about your fulfilling lifetime, retrospective tax will strangle the remaining life out of you.

I have been seeing multiple advertisements lately of the government’s income declaration scheme where once you declare your undisclosed income you are let go with a 45% tax penalty and no legal repercussions. I simply love PM Modi’s approach to this which is really how all negotiations end in India – “na teri,na meri.45% mein done karo”. He has hit the nail really. As Indians we love discounts whether it’s buying potatoes, negotiating with flight hijackers or declaring our undisclosed income.

Speaking of tax evasions many Indians were rather disappointed that their name wasn’t featured in the Panama Papers leak. After stashing millions abroad, the least you expect is some form of recognition for pulling off this feat.  In fact I think they should go a step ahead and make it a weekend primetime show in India. Something like ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’ (Who Wants To Be A Millionaire) with a small twist. A tax inspector will be the guest and the tax evader gets to be the host and instead of general knowledge questions the tax man is challenged on some critical questions.

“Respected sir, where do you think have I parked my black money in? You have 4 options-“
a- Dubai
b- Cayman island
c- Liechtenstein
d- Switzerland

Questions will get trickier as you progress.
 “Respected sir, in your estimate how many dummy companies do I run      and in what proportion? Pick one”
a-                3 local and 5 offshore companies
b-               5 local and 3 offshore companies

There you go Star Plus. I just gave you your next show concept for free.

With the rise of taxes over the years, kids have also started asking rather uncomfortable questions like “Did Daddy make it to the tax evaders list finally?”. Which is a fair question indeed, just like property advertisements emphasize, it’s not parental love till they buy you a swanky sea facing apartment in a posh locality.

As a nation besides speculating on stocks another game that we do enjoy is betting on our neighbour’s tax evasion. So the moment we spot any remote signs of prosperity amongst our neighbours, subconsciously our mind has already started counting their black money.

“Oh! The guy who used to have cheap run-of-the-mill ice creams all these years is gorging Baskin Robbins Chocolate Mousse Royale scoops nowadays. Bet he has stashed a few crores abroad”.

Here’s hoping that something good emerges out of the GST in April 2017.Or else I am definitely opening a kathi roll shop in Liechtenstein. Farewell countrymen!

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Is it Santa Claus or I-T officer? Demonetisation has changed my life

(Article written exclusively for India Today -Click Here)

It was an ordinary Tuesday night for me last week. My mind was confused as to what lay ahead. No, my confusion wasn’t between Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, but more existential choices like butter chicken or kadhai chicken.

As a nation we were engrossed with the US presidential elections and boy! wasn’t it fun watching one of the most powerful nations on our planet racing towards its own ruin.

All of a sudden media channels shifted focus to PM Narendra Modi’s live speech about currency demonetisation.

Modi shocked the nation by announcing that Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes would no longer be legal tender post-midnight. This was indeed a very bold move to curb corruption and black money.

The message by the government was loud and clear, that if in all these years you have not yet spent a bomb to build an ugly Antilla equivalent for your posterity, then it's too late now. Your kids will need to find alternative ways to embarrass themselves.

I believe that as a token of appreciation for hoarding so much money over the years, it's high time that the government gifted each black money hoarder a cash counting machine at least. It is literally the most adorable way to feel poor.

Amid the long bank queues to get notes exchanged, we have people like Rahul Gandhi, too, who nowadays bears an uncanny resemblance to Varun Dhawan in the Badlapur flick. It's always a comforting feeling having your friendly neighbourhood assassin in the same queue as you.

If the selfies with the new Rs 2,000 notes were not enough, people have gone the extra mile to test its water resistance, crush resistance and perhaps even its sword-shielding abilities.

Now I am not surprised by this considering that the internet has even tested an iPhone by boiling it in Coca Cola. The internet never disappoints, as clearly an iPhone's natural habitat has to be in a pan filled with boiling carbonated sugar water.

It's great how the government impoverished so many money hoarders  overnight. It's just a matter of time till we see courses popping up across India, training former elite people on adjusting to their newly acquired middle class life.
The government will even keep a track of the money exchanged and compare it to every individual's tax return filed to spot any discrepancies. This will indeed increase transparency but will also cause widespread mistrust.
To the extent, I can't even trust Santa this Christmas. For all you know, he may be a tax officer in disguise waiting to penalise me for any unaccounted candies consumed during the year.
I love how as a nation we came about with some rather creative ways to sabotage the move, right from paying salaries in advance to even buying costly air tickets with a view to cancel them subsequently.
People are willing to do any large purchase from any shop accepting old notes as payments. So one is faced with rather deep questions like:

Do I need a second full size wooden dining table in my drawing room? Maybe no.

But do I want to have the option to dine on different tables every alternate day? Oh, yes I do.

This is pretty much the mood of the nation, where countless people are stuck with their old notes and at the same time have limited access to new ones.
Here's hoping some good comes out of this demonetisation drive and eventually Paytm even gives cash back on bribes paid.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Survivor's guide to B-School

Article written exclusively for India Today-

A small tribute to my alma mater.

Around two years back, bored with my corporate job like most millennials, I decided to take the plunge into MBA.

It is indeed a great leveller. For example, now I know that for guys with average looks, it takes a minimum of two years and an MBA degree in hand to get more than 200 picture likes on Facebook.

What I simply love about all MBA colleges in general are the brochures with models posing around with books to look academic. These are faces you shall never ever see on campus. Just like the myth of the "Yeti" whose sightings have been heard of but no confirmed reports as yet.

Somewhere amidst the innumerable SWOT tables and PERT charts, time just flew by. Placement season still remains the quickest way to get converted from a socialist into capitalist. Words of wisdom start flowing from every corner right from astrological tips to acrobatic tricks to woo recruiters.

So along with the horoscope they are kind enough to give you the lucky colour for the day. More often than not the lucky colour of the day is usually something outrageous like purple, peach etc.I have a practice of checking up the horoscope before going for interviews. Not that it will make any consequential difference to the interview outcome but I do get a better reason to console myself in case I don't clear the interview. You see it's always more convenient to blame it on Mars' alignment than me fumbling during the interview.

Thankfully, I don't make a living entertaining toddlers in a Barney costume at shopping malls. Otherwise wearing the colour purple would have been completely legit. No offence.

One gets to learn new subjects too such as HR or strategic HR (because it sounds cooler). Work productivity isn't achieved by giving employees bean bags to laze around on but giving them mild doses of punishments like going to the boss and getting your annual share of caning on your palms. This is what appraisals should really be like. However, I'll leave that debate for another day.

For our assignment submissions we had to submit them on an anti-plagiarism website. It is with great humility that I admit to have walked upon the Earth with noble souls who tried beating the system by converting  text from English to Chinese to Mexican and back again to English only to get caught eventually. Ladies and gentlemen, now that is what you call the spirit of human endeavour. 

Towards the end of MBA, one is also expected to submit a research thesis on a topic of global academic interest.

Apparently, researching on the evolution of skateboarding dogs isn't a legit topic which is heartbreaking to hear considering that in terms of legacy all we are going to leave for our posterity is a huge collection of cat and dog videos.

Recently, we had our convocation ceremony, and part of the celebrations included fireworks which when you come to think of it is a rather adorable way to burn your dad's cash almost literally.

For videos, we had drone cameras whizzing above our heads. I must admit it's indeed a comforting feeling to have drone cams capture your balding head in high-resolution.

(Left)-The monk who sold his Excel sheets. #crie
Speeches were rather elaborate with the chief guests infusing optimism in a rather dull job market. Much to our disappointment we were told to go ahead and also conquer the world besides eradicating poverty and illiteracy. In terms of my personal life goals I don't really know where conquering the world stands in the list, however trying to tear open ketchup sachets in the first attempt definitely falls in the high-priority zone. 

Unlike batchmates who opted for the entrepreneurship specialisation and were basically told to create jobs for themselves and others , the rest of us did get placed and live to tell the tale.

Friday, 20 January 2017

Eat,Pray & Procrastinate!

So the year 2017 is finally here. Statistically speaking it's just matter of time before fellow mortals start predicting about the end of Earth this year on Nostradamus' behalf. There is something very magical about reminiscing your screw ups of the year that went by and speculating your future ones parallely.

Like most people even I am quite curious about the year ahead and some rather deep questions do plague my mind like-

Is Putin going to tear apart a lion's jaws with his bare hands on national television?

Will PM Modi waltz with Donald Trump to easen out H-1B visa regulations for Indian techies?

For once will Queen Elizabeth's public appearance not make media headlines like it was Jesus' second coming or something.

January is also the month of great introspection indeed where people make resolutions which is a universally accepted way to fool your mind. I
personally admire people who declare their resolutions on social media. It makes complete sense indeed. After all why simply make do with just a personal failure when you can add the spice of public humiliation to go along with it.

It's only a matter of time before it becomes a contest between whose resolution is more ambitious. Now ambition I believe is a good thing, especially when you are trying to defy the centre of gravity while loading up your salad plate at Pizza Hut.

With the new year comes new aspirations, be it career or personal. Recently I happened to come across a video of a girl who shot to fame for smashing her face into different types of breads with utmost dedication and has garnered millions of viewers across the globe. I would not be surprised if she bags an endorsement deal by Subway soon to further promote their empire built on providing junk food for cows. Quite a niche target audience indeed by all counts. This video almost put me into an existential crises. Why work in 8 hour shifts when you can make a killing by simply smashing your face into food.

Like every new year, I love checking out my annual horoscope. Over the years I have developed the wisdom to always check out my horoscope from a minimum of 10 websites and carefully cherry pick the most favourable points in each to form an opinion. The world is a cruel place indeed and god forbid if you happen to have a chinese zodiac sign of a goat. So I get directed to articles revolving around goats with titles such as (in increasing order of embarrassment)-

-Goat's love prospects for 2017.
-Things that should be avoided by goats.
 (Fun fact-Contrary to public perception, it's not Eid, but rather a collection of unlucky dates, colours etc.)
-What type of goat are you?

Here's hoping the year ahead turns out well for you. Unless of course you are off to carve a career path for yourself by smashing your face into assorted well buttered parathas, in which case you have just found your new competitor. Good Luck. May the best man win.

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

The Laughing Messiah Podcast Episode#2 Mumbai Nostalgia

This week I talk about the Mumbai airport, Indian hospitality and wifi obsessed rats.BONUS- billion dollar start up ideas included too 
(P.S Mobile listeners click the below link & select 'listen in browser' button to save yourself the pain of downloading the app.)

Thursday, 28 July 2016

The Sleeping Prince

So recently the duke of Hindustan Mr Rahul Gandhi was caught taking a quick nap while a heated debate on Dalit atrocities was going on in the parliament.

To be honest I am hardly surprised at the matter because as Indians we possess several hidden talents such as dozing off during flight takeoffs  amongst others. Come on who doesn’t enjoy a nap. Even some of our pilots do.

Soon enough the matter snowballed into a huge media outcry and prime time debate slots were reserved to discuss the matter. Party members fought tooth and nail to defend his actions giving statements like that he was only moistening his eyes or that it was a Yoga technique to enhance listening abilities. Some even came to the conclusion that he was simply in deep introspection thinking about the plight of Dalits. At this stage they are collectively simply one step away from proclaiming that he was not sleeping but simply closed his eyes to establish a telepathic connection with extraterrestrials to check their views on the debate.

Now Mr Rahul Gandhi truly faces a big conundrum indeed. It’s like when your teacher asks if you were sleeping or not during class. Regardless of the answer you will definitely get into trouble.
I was fortunate enough to have caught the primetime debate on Times Now where mature men were passionately debating the Rahul Gandhi fiasco. One of the panelists raised doubts as to if Mr Gandhi was pro or anti Dalits. When the sleeping incident of Mr Modi was mentioned another panelist quickly defended him saying that he slept because he had just returned from a long international tour and was a bit tired.

Now this raises the confusion as to what is the right time for things to be considered serious enough. For example when is it exactly considered a ‘violent’ day at the parliament. When a member breaks a table or is it when the prime minister performs a chokeslam on a member of the opposition. These are grey areas indeed.

Over the years our politicians have been caught sleeping at critical junctures whenever India’s future was being shaped. It’s high time that we as a nation establish mutually agreed descriptive rules as to what really constitutes as ‘sleep’.

-Eyes closed and head sideways  or

-Eyes partially open and slouching on the chair or

-Eyes gazing down and staring at the floor with no facial gestures.

The list can go on and on.Like most things even these naps would be governed by laws like-

-The culprit should be able to furnish evidence of any trip undertaken within the past 24 hours (including but not limited to intergalactic voyages).

-In case the member is in deep introspection with their eyes closed, he/she should place their fist under their chin every 2 minutes to indicate their reflective nature prominently. Failure to do so would lead to disciplinary action.

- Keeping your eyes closed for elongated ‘moistening’ purposes is permitted if you have conjunctivitis or have broken a world record in cutting onions recently.

Maybe we can take a cue from the British House of Commons where all the members sit stuffed up next to each other. As a patriotic Indian, trust me its poetic justice indeed seeing your former rulers suffer in silence. Their seating pattern is like those property advertisements in Mumbai where you see spacious houses with European models flipping hot aloo parathas and in reality all you get is a pigeon hole.
Getting our parliamentarians sit closer to each other would besides making them feel conscious all the time also serve greater goals such as increasing their accuracy at throwing furniture around.

Till the wise folks figure out their next step, I am off to sleep during daytime. One of life’s simple pleasures I get being a Rahul without the Gandhi surname.

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Podcast Ep#1- Till Butter chicken do us apart

My debut humour podcast where I talk about butter chicken shampoo,badshah masala,human evolution,big data and live streaming toothbrushes.

Visit the link below and click the follow button to get instant updates of my forthcoming podcasts

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Tips for first time cat owners

A small token of love from me to cats and cat lovers. Try not to hate me. Remember unlike cats you just have one lifetime to settle all your scores with me. 

Join my YouTube page for more troll videos- 

Monday, 9 May 2016

The quintessential guide to flying like a maharaja

Article written exclusively for India Today- Click Here

Flights, as some of us know them, are air-pressurised metal tubes designed to facilitate humans to indulge in small talk with random strangers at 35,000 feet above sea level.

I still remember my first flight way back as a kid, we couldn't get on to the plane till my mom packed us aloo puri in spite of innumerable assurances that we would be served on the aircraft. You see, Punjabi kids like me rank mid-air food scarcity crises higher than potential flight hijacking.
Air India's unofficial mascot, PM Modi, boards a flight.

There was a time in the pre-recession days, when air hostesses would come with a tray full of toffees and offer it to the passengers before the take-off. Like an imbecile, on my first flight, I took the whole tray from the air hostess, only to be given a seemingly comforting excuse:

"Take a few toffees, and I will mail you the whole tray on your birthday."

I am 24 years old and that tray still hasn't shown up on my door. So ma'am, just in case you're reading this, do get in touch urgently. I got some scores to settle.

Soon, with the passage of time, the aviation sector realised that it had to come up with a new business model to sustain long-term growth efficiently. Budget airlines were launched, which gave no freebies at all, and thus offered lower airfares.

I am in love with the Air India model of budget airlines known as Air India Express. The best part is that they don't let you feel like you are in an actual budget airline since they serve you complimentary refreshments onboard.

It's almost like they feel guilty that you have fallen on such bad times that you have to travel by a budget airline. The thing about flying Air India is that somewhere deep down, you know very well that if you coax the airhostess, she will quickly churn out gajar ka halwa (Indian carrot confection) onboard for you. It's precisely this motherly love that keeps the airline from falling apart.

Budget airlines offer you a complimentary-picnic-kind of an environment nowadays. Families bring in boxes full of McAloo Tikki burgers onboard as that is one of the cheapest items on the menu in an airport food court.

This is usually followed by a mini burger distribution ceremony where relatives sitting in all corners of the aircraft get their share while hurling choicest abuses at the MNC chain for being miserly in handing out ketchup sachets.

Since these flights don't have any great entertainment options, people are forced to come up with innovative ways to amuse themselves, like peeling oranges, cutting toe nails, settling ancestral family feuds onboard et al.

Airlines, in an attempt to make you feel hospitable, had started announcing cabin crew names and now they have gone a step ahead by announcing their locations.

"The chief air stewardess on our flight to Bombay is Miss Tanya Malhotra who hails from Ghatkopar. Assisting her shall be Miss Shilpa Gupta who hails from Thane (East). Please feel free to get in touch with them if you seek to share the cab ride home."

I am rather delighted about the fact that airlines give all cabin crew members their share of recognition by announcing their names, but does one need to call out their locations on domestic flights too, considering all of them are from India?

They might as well share insignificant information about their diet plans to complete the circle.

"Miss Tanya goes for a low carb diet on Tuesdays. However, every Thursday she is only on protein shakes all day long, and tends to capitalise on her moral high ground by reminding people munching samosas around her about their short lifespan due to potential cholesterol issues."

Also, I don't really get why pilots feel that it's their moral duty to give live updates of the flight stats every now and then. 

Dear pilots, please bear in mind:
Passengers in general:
1) Are mathematically challenged and can't comprehend both altitude and speed at once,
2) They are busy flipping pages of the inflight duty free shopping magazine not due to any "genuine" interest in shopping, but simply because it has an aristocratic feel to it.

Finally, the last hit was the global financial crisis. Airlines went into a hyper austerity mode. Finance teams worked overtime and every minute cost was stringently worked out and analysed on countless Excel sheets.

So one fine day, the CEO of a major airline, introduced the new finance head in a Captain Planet style announcement:

"Deceit, treachery, greed and indifference - with the powers of all combined, I give you Captain A**hole!"

This announcement was met with a thunderous applause. The new finance head was bright indeed and had some valid suggestions like:

"Sir, we could meddle around with the thermostat by a few degrees to optimise the energy consumption and make it perfectly calibrated to cause passengers' discomfort, yet not so much that they will have the courage to raise their voice and bother the cabin crew. Also, we can save water consumption by ensuring our faucets only release either soul stirring cold or lava spewing hot water. This way, we save costs and even get to boast around the globe about our low carbon footprint, compared to competitors."

Soon, the practices were aped by everyone in the aviation sector. Thus began its downfall. Here's hoping there is some light at the end of the tunnel.

Saturday, 2 April 2016

Tips to improve employee productivity and re-energize their hate for the job

Dedicated to the loving memory of HR professionals.........You're welcome!

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel for more such videos-

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

A beginner's guide to the Indian Budget 2016

(Article written exclusively for India Today- Click Here)

It was that day of the year yesterday. I mean February 29, which comes once in every four years. It is quite literally the Uday Chopra of the Gregorian calendar. You know it's going to strike you and yet there's nothing you can do to prevent it.

Besides this, there were other matters of global prominence too, namely, the Oscars and "OMG, OMG Priyanka Chopra exhaling carbon dioxide at the Oscars." This comes as a bit of a surprise, as Indian emotions in general about American matters are pretty limited to whether or not American customs will allow you to take mango pickle into the country.

However yesterday was also Budget Day in India, or as I would like to call it, the "annual CA planetary relevance reminder". Now Budget speeches are way too boring and require endurance to watch from start to finish. Especially when Indian audiences are accustomed to the "WWE Hell in the Cell" theatrics, which are quite a common sight on an average day in the Parliament.

Budget speeches are filled with way too much of financial jargon for the common man to comprehend. Allow me to, then, put my knowledge of accountancy to some good public use finally and gain some karmic brownie points in the bargain. Trust me, you're in safe hands... well almost!

The budget session of the Parliament started as always with the finance minister posing in front of the press with an age-old briefcase which is supposed to contain the well-guarded Budget papers. In an alternate universe, in case I do get selected for this coveted post, I would love to just open a briefcase full of samosas and kachoris on Budget Day simply to troll the photographers.

The standard operating procedures are pretty simple. News channels across the nation stream Budget updates live and citizens are supposed to act shocked and traumatised over every other announcement as if they didn't know the Budget was going to screw them up eventually. It's like walking into a Barbecue Nation outlet for dinner and getting stunned by diarrhoea next morning.
While hogging away a year worth of calories in one meal, deep within, you knew very well that things won't go too well next morning, but you still carried on shamelessly. Coincidentally, this is how the government works too. When you splurge a bit too much, you need to unload a fraction of your wealth to the government coffers too.

The trauma is usually accompanied by choicest slur words aimed at ministers and their posterity.

Cigarette prices have been raised to promote cohesion amongst teenage addicts and also to teach them the importance of sharing, be it the lunch box or their packet of Gold Flake. Movie tickets are also going to cost more shortly, which is a subtle way of saying 

"Hey, who the f**k are you to enjoy simple pleasures in life, that too in Dolby Digital Surround Sound, when the movie is going to come up on TV two months down the line?"

Electronic items would get costlier so you might not want to sever ties with your foreign-based relatives even though they usurped all your ancestral property. Branded garments will attract higher excise duties thus giving snobbish kids more things to brag about, besides their cars, houses and that De Beers diamond necklace which coincidentally happens to come with a loving and caring mom attached to it. You see, on a scale of priorities, human emotions come after materialistic possessions for this breed.

Start-ups formed between April 2016 and March 2019 shall enjoy a tax break for three years unless they make a viral YouTube web series midway chronicling their struggles, in which case, they shall get rewarded with a cameo by none other than Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Provident funds, that is, the last hope of social security for the salaried class shall become taxable soon. Bet the conversation between a middle class person and a government employee would be as follows:

Middle class guy: "Hey, you can't just tax my whole life's savings, that too when I am about to retire!"

Government guy: "Don't get so emotional. At least you didn't get rammed and killed by the SUV of a drunk celebrity. Isn't that enough mental relief?"

Middle class guy: "Boss, what about my social security?"

Government guy: "You know you could have been struck down by lightening, floods, lamp posts falling, open sewers, what not. India offers some highly creative ways to get killed. Count your blessings."

Middle class guy: "What the..."

Government guy: "Bloody greedy guy you are!"

Telephone bills shall get higher owing to increased telecom spectrum rates. So just in case you're looking around for a credible reason to snap out of your long distance relationship, this is a godsend opportunity indeed.

Food outings at restaurants shall cost more owing to higher service tax which shall inevitably cause a sharp rise of a new breed of foodies who shall overnight discover their passion for street food at roadside stalls.

SUVs shall attract a cess of four per cent from henceforth. However, vehicles registered as ambulances and used solely as ambulances shall be exempt from cess. So just in case you have a habit of going to parties in ambulances, blasting "To Brazil" by Vengaboys on full volume,

a) You are an a**hole indeed!

b) You will have to pay taxes to pursue this noble hobby of yours.
The government is also offering a four-month compliance window for domestic black money holders to search deep within their soul for finding out any last few shreds of morality.

Last, but not the least, here are a few terms for your reference. It's strongly recommended that you use them to sound wise in any conversations remotely revolving around the topic of the Budget.
1. Crony capitalism.
2. Dampened spirits.
3. Creditable credit.
4. Transgressors (a "cooler" synonym for violators).
5. Fiscal deficit target.
6. Financial rationalisation.

Yes, you're welcome!
Here's hoping that we have a prosperous year ahead and also that we get the opportunity to time travel in the future just to see if our green cards get approved or not.

Disclaimer: Do not take any financial or personal decisions on the basis of the article above. Just in case you do, feel free to mail me as to how horribly wrong it went. I might just get some material for my next column.

Saturday, 27 February 2016

Tips to nail a job interview


It's a competitive job market out there. 
Here's a few tips to give you the wining edge.Subscribe to my youtube channel for upcoming videos.Click Here Stay tuned for more!

Friday, 11 December 2015

My meat is more tolerable than yours

Candid pic of Osmania University students busy outraging.Call now for organizing beef parties at your home.

Article written exclusively for India Today- Click Here

Food is the basis for mankind's existence on the planet. It also that thing which human society deems ‘edible’ & ‘fresh’ by the mere sprinkling of few coriander leaves over it. In prehistoric times food consisted primarily of a mixture of wild dusty leaves & raw meat or as McDonald's calls it Chicken Salad.

Amidst the nationwide intolerance debate, Osmania University has vowed to make its little contribution by organizing a beef festival .Another student body within the same campus decided to launch a counter campaign by announcing a pork festival. Now it's a well-known fact that consumption of beef and pork is considered nothing short of a sin in Hindu & Muslim communities respectively.
Such acts would eventually cause communal conflicts.

Since the student bodies at Osmania University are on a religious sentiment hurting spree, let’s burn a few more bridges. Shall we?
Hey Osmania University kids,
#FunFact - Jain religion prohibits consumption of all kinds of meat, garlic, onions amongst other things. So here's hoping I am getting complimentary passes to your annual Chicken Adraki (Ginger Chicken) festival.

I believe the only time in pre independent India the beef controversy gained traction was during Mangal Pandey’s when the bullets were rumoured to be greased with pig & cow fat. Mangal Pandey felt scandalized indeed. It’s one of those anomalies to strike the face of earth like Mad Over Donuts serving motichur ladoo flavoured donuts.

I personally don't quite get the logic behind these all–you-can-eat buffet protests. Now if my local cinema chain doesn’t allow me to take home food inside the hall. It’s a set rule. I don’t think in this or an alternate universe, will I ever go and munch aloo parathas at the cinema entrance to mark my protest. There are better ways to address the matter. If one simply has to outrage to kill time, then outrage for the some worthy causes at least like poverty, illiteracy etc.

Both protests, be it the beef or pork one are equally pointless. By all means consume it in your house unless you happen to reside in states where its consumption is completely banned.

 Contrary to popular belief, the Gods above do not keep Microsoft Excel sheets tallying the number of times you ate what .So Jesus and Lord Krishna don’t go around exchanging KPI scores with each other-

Lord Krishna- “Bro, what if I told you I have 1.5 lakh sinners in food related offences this quarter”

Jesus-“ lol I guess it’s the right time for you to stop dreaming about your year end appraisals. Speaking of year end, my alcohol offences numbers are going to break all records this year. These Russians, I tell you never seem to get ‘enough’ of alcohol. My gun related sinner count grew marginally by 2% this quarter and according to my forecasts it will show a steady decline starting from the 2nd quarter of 2016. Anyways I will catch you later. I have a budget review session to attend.”

Unfortunately the beef festival did take place, but thanks to the heavy police force deployed on campus they could only cook it in their hostel rooms. Remember the last time you heard about hostel boys getting excited about cooking ? Ya, me neither.

Here’s hoping all the hostel kids learn some more dishes and consequently launch a swadeshi movement equivalent boycott of deplorable mess food served across hostels in India.

In conclusion, all I would like to say is that feel free to do whatever you want but just don’t get butter chicken in the midst of the debate. You see in Punjabi households like mine, intergalactic wars can get sparked off in the butter chicken supremacy debate. Till we meet again, Adios!
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