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Kirti Nerkar

Deputy Editor Tiasa Das

Content Editor

C. Prasanna Venkatesh

Copy Editor

Roshni Devi R.

Design Editor Tiasa Das

Graphic Designer Saloni Nath Aditi Jain

Fashion Consultant Priyanka Birole

Marketing Head Esha Singh

Marketing Team

Sanjeevani Gorde Sathyanand Sabbani


Kirti Nerkar


Jayant Printery Printed, published, edited and owned by Kirti A. Nerkar, Printed at Jayant Printery, 352/54, Girgaon Road, Murlidhar Temple Compound, Near Thakurdwar P.O. Mumbai- 400002 and published from 386/E, 33, Tara Building, New Badam Wadi,V.P. Road, Mumbai 400004 YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Editor’s Note

Kirti Nerkar EDITOR

Everyone must have said or heard the word ‘Adda’ at least once in their lifetime. Every galli, nukkad, roadside tea stall, sutta center has witnessed many stories, beginnings and endings of relationships and friendships, last minute notes, class gossip, anti-teacher rants, vacation plans and lots more. These are mini Parliaments, with their own discussions, points of view, politics, fashion ideas and film plots. Whether you’ve got a new girlfriend/ boyfriend or topped the University exams or received an invitation to dine with Obama, the prize is the same: you have to treat everyone with a special tea! And Youth’s Stop is no different from them.Youth’s Stop is a pit stop for every youth who has something to share, who has some hidden talent, who is ready to raise his/her voice, who wants to peep into the fashion world, who is a die-hard film buff, who moves to music all day or is an unashamed television fan. In one line, Youth’s Stop is a platform for every young voice.We are the ‘Adda’ for the Indian youth. For this we would like to thank each and every one associated with us: for believing in us, for standing by us and for just being there. We promise that Youth’s Stop will be stand by the youth every time. Thank you for joining the ‘Adda’.




24 Interview: Aditi Rao Hydari 30 Article: More Than Just A Pretty Face 32 Interview: Sachin Khedekar 34 Intervew: Ravi K. Chandran


36 Intervew: Rashami Desai


39 Article: Have A Drink On me!


42 44 46 48 50

Interview: Blakc Band Article: Engineers By Day, Rockstars By Night. Story: A Chance Meeting Story: Not Forever Article: Love Engineering

51 Article: Why The New iPad Is Worth Moolah 52 Interview: Ashwin Sanghi 55 Article: Spotlighting The Image Within 57 Article: Art Is Not Always In Galleries 59 Article: Majestic Maharashtra 63 Article: The Great Ladakhi Escape 67 Recipes: Quenchers For The Summers


71 Article: Why is Gymming Important?


72 Article: Future Stars Of Indian Sports 74 Article: Soccer – Goals Within 76 Interview: Rohit Sharma



5 Article: From Citizen To Subject 7 Interview: Aaditya Thackarey 10 Street Hunt 14 Article: The Choo Saga 17 Get The Look!

78 Article: Why Rhyme Schemes And Hyperboles Can Go To Hell 79 Article: Filmmaking As Career 81 82 84 85 87 88 89

Article: The Awakening Article: 2011: A Satire Odyssey Article: What Would Your Life Be Like? Article: Are You Playing Games? Article: Killing The Beautiful Article: The Coming Era of Indian Pop Music! Article: Who I Am? YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012



The modern-day urban middle class citizen feels that he or she has no say in politics and administration, he or she is a subject and that whose surroundings are largely under the control of someone else. Has it always been this way? Why has this state of affairs come about? This article looks at some historical insights into this question.



n today’s times, the notion of ‘participatory democracy’ has been reduced to something of a joke. Participation is limited to the act of voting during elections which take place every few years. Beyond that the citizen is left to choose between a set of predetermined agendas in which s/he has virtually no say. This is not an accident or a trend specific to India or some by-product of ‘human nature’. It is the deliberate result of centuries of development of a Capitalist, or to be more specific, a Monetary-based Market economy. What does Capitalism have to do with this? It encourages two trends, both of which have very direct consequences on the way democracy works.


1. Capitalism encourages and rewards technical efficiency and know-how. 2. It breaks down community relations, narrowing the sphere of interest of individuals to their ‘near and dear ones’. As a result of the first consequence, ‘politics’ is seen as dirty game played by the lumpen elements of society. The middle and upper classes begin to feel that ‘technical efficiency’ should be applied to all elements of society including its management. Politicians, seen as corrupt and self-serving, are loathed. More and more decisions are given over to scientists and technorats in the management of society. When it comes to framing budgets, drafting environmental regulations, building infrastructure, etc the decision-makers are invariably bureaucrats. 5

POLITICS The management of society gradually takes on a ‘technical’ aspect and the direct participation of citizens in deliberating over their everyday issues becomes more and more limited. What becomes more pronounced is the role of citizens in giving their assent or dissent to agendas pre-set (more by) bureaucrats and (less by) politicians. On the other hand, with the development of capitalism, the individual is forced to fend more and more for his own survival, what with longer work days, inflation and the like which gives him very little time to engage with the needs of his community/society and be an ‘active citizen’. He or she becomes more concerned with providing for their ‘near and dear ones’ and the larger issues of society take a backseat. What is the problem with this? Is the scientific and technical management of society bad in itself? No, not at all. But it becomes very problematic when it is not open to public scrutiny, as the technocrats in control become closet dictators of sorts and the public goes from citizen to subject. In this context, it is all the more important that as citizens you and me be informed about what is happening around us. All of us are concerned about our surroundings, our environments and our societies and hope for a just and equitable future. We all hope for cleaner cities, more efficient transport, more smartly managed roadways, and the like. Several times we may have solutions to the mess we see around us. But these momentary flashes of insight or outrage are replaced by cynicism or a weary reminder that we have to ‘get back on track’ and continue with the rat-race. Fortunately in today’s time with the development of technologies such as the Internet, the situation is changing and participation is now gradually moving to the online world. More governments are embracing e-governance. It is becoming easier for the citizen to be updated about local government activities and also to provide feedback.

for various documents, lodging complaints, finding out details about property tax, etc. Your ward number can be found out from the GHMC website ( in) under the section, ‘Ward information’.

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Know your local corporator: Another vital piece of information.

Be updated regarding ward expenditure: The

government carries out developmental work using our tax money. For those of us who have a keen interest in the details of the work carried out, it is easily available at the GHMC website under the section ‘Budgets/Wardwise Provisions’. Awareness on the amount of money spent is also helpful for keeping track of how much work takes place on the ground. Heck, if we can take a keen interest in something as abstract as the love-lives of film stars, checking out the expenditures undertaken in our locality must not be far-fetched at all!


Make use of the facilities available for feedback: The GHMC website has detailed options for

citizens registering complaints.


Use the RTI: The RTI is one of the most power-

ful weapons available to citizens today. Filing it is a simple procedure with effective results. Make sure to use it the next time a passport application or any sort of governmental interaction takes an unnecessary amount of time.


Get involved: Probably the most important point

is to join an organisation. It can be either a political party or a civil society group such as an NGO. Being part of organisations always allows for more information and effective action. The ‘politics is dirty’ mindset is one which we can no longer afford.

To be an empowered citizen, therefore, one must be informed and active. Below is a list of relevant information and activity: Know your ward number: This is a basic piece of information and useful in almost any sort of dealings with local government authorities, such as applying

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“I’m Just A Voice Of The Youth”

The Thackeray blood runs hot in this young Yuva Sena leader. Yet, with the lineage of a strong political history, he doesn’t mind acknowledging that he loves to dance, watch movies, photography, travelling and lot more. He doesn’t come across as any different from you or me. YSM: Tell us about Yuva Sena. Aaditya Thackarey: It’s basically the youth wing of the Siva Sena, but it’s very active in the society right now. We have been working for a year right now, taking up issues in students’ field etc. We think the youth are very important for our country, or say for the elders of the society too. You are the youngest member of the Yuva Sena, and you are their leader. How does that make you feel? I am not the youngest person in the Yuva Sena. Actually, my team is a good blend of both. I have people in the early 30s and I have people like Purvesh, who is only 19 YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

years old. We have lots of youngsters from 8th, 9th and 10th standards who are working with us very actively right from street level activities to Parliament-level activities, through which we give our MPs issues to pick up. All these people contribute to it and I’m just a mediator. What do you hope to achieve from the Yuva Sena? More than any goal set for me or for the Yuva Sena, what we want to achieve is to get smiles on the faces of the youth, try to get their work done, and that is what we are doing ever since we have established ourselves, We’re just being their voice. How are your ideologies different or similar from those of your grandfather Balasheb Thackeray or your father Uddhav? I think both of them are very modern in their perspective.They are very progressive and they are very straightforward; whatever it is they say it from their heart, and that’s what we believe in. Think specifically on that and implement it to the fullest: this one of the main things that my granddad has taught me. If you decide to do something, do it, don’t backtrack. 7

POLITICS Aaditya Thackarey and The Team of Yuva Sena

What do you have to say about our educational system? The educational system is in a very confused state in Maharashtra. You have the government declaring educational policies four days before the result and cancelling it four days after the results! The percentile system, 90-10, or even the best for five: these policies are very confusing for students. Again at the University level, I’m trying to make big breakthroughs. I’m trying to get a syllabus for music after 10th standard and a syllabus for theater. I believe there should be a syllabus for business, rather than having a standard B. Com course. We can have one course for pure MBAs in Entrepreneur Stream and others will be vocational, very 8

career oriented stream. You write poetry. Do you plan to publish it anytime? Some of my friends who like my poetry are talking to me about getting it published or getting out an album. But it takes about three to four months of your schedule to focus on it, right from proof-reading, editing; designing of the book and everything. And I’d like to look into each aspect of it, so I’m thinking of it. Let’s see! Which is your favorite biography? Favorite biography would be granddad’s of course. But that’s a biography I’m seeing live in frony of me everyday. But a very interesting biography I read was of Lord Louis Mountbat-

ten. I can connect with that because it has a lot to do with India. It sounds like something that happened just yesterday, and yet so far behind. And the biography of Nelson Mandela was also very inspiring. Tell us about your travelling experiences? I love to travel everywhere. We holiday in India, abroad and a major travel chunk of mine is touring and campaigning. I think that’s the best part because its then that I’m with 30-40 0f my colleagues and enjoying in the train. For example when we went to Nanded which is a 12-hour journey – we chatted till 3 in the morning! I loved it! Europe is very beautiful and Maharashtra – the interiors of Maharashtra’ – very beautiful. YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


Mama’s boy or dad’s boy 60-40; I’m more of a mama’s boy. If not politics, then what? I think my regular poetry writing, photography, dancing... But of course that happens with politics. Your inspiration My grand dad, my dad, Paolo Coelho. Do you draw like cartoons? No, I don’t draw because it turns out to be something else.

My soul… ~ Aaditya Thackarey

Favourite Novel I don’t read much of fiction; I read more of biographies, and history, and Paulo Coelho.

My soul keeps traveling Changing realms, Changing spaces It keeps traveling from One body to another One heart to another Seeks solace in every beauty Every peace and tranquility Now I may say it has found its reality Its veins to blow in, It’s joyous spirit to be It’s heaven, its own reason to be Your eyes, your love, your warmth it seeks It’s in your soul, that my soul, Both, its rebirth and nirvana it meets.

Favourite actor Big B, he is ever green. Hrithik Roshan, also Farhan Akthar – he is natural on screen. Favourite actress It’s definitely Madhu Bala. (Chuckles) I think Katrina Kaif is really good.

Photography by Aaditya Thackarey

What about your interest in photography? I do a lot of photography but it’s very abstract. In fact, I started photography when I was in the third standard. Since then I’ve carried on photography. I still carry a small camera on me. Many political families are accused of nepotism.What do you feel about it? YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

No, I don’t support it. Working hard and not been given the chance is very wrong. At the same time, if you are not doing the work, but you’re pushed for the chance, that is also wrong. You should have people who are working hard and are dedicated to the party. They shouldn’t be wiped out because of someone who is related. Again, you being related to someone else might give

you the base for the initial training that is needed in the battlefield (of politics). In the end, you have to fend for yourselves.



Street Hunt!

Model: Histesh Bhatia Photography: M. Vanchi Nathan

Whoever said you need to empty your pockets to get The Look, hasn’t ever been on a street hunt for the right threats. YSM tells where and how to be your stylish best within a grand.


T-shirt: Rs.150 Linking Road, Bandra Full length cargos: Rs. 500 Linking Road, Bandra Accessories: Rs. 50 Hill Road, Bandra


Dress: Rs. 350 Colaba Causeway Footwear: Rs. 250 Hill Road, Bandra Accessories: Rs.200 Colaba Causeway

Model: Akshada G. Photography: M. Vanchi Nathan

Sling bag: Rs. 150 Hill Road, Bandra



Shirt: Rs. 250 Linking Road, Bandra Bottoms: Rs. 450 Linking Road, Bandra Footwear: Rs. 250 Colaba Causeway

Model: Mihir Pednekar Photography: M. Vanchi Nathan

Accessories: Rs.50 Hill Road, Bandra



Jumper: Rs. 550 Hill Road, Bandra Bag: Rs. 300 Colaba Causeway Accessories: Rs.60 Colaba Causeway




g T h e C o Sa o h



enter the store with trepidation. I run my fingers nervously through my hair. It’s smaller than I thought. I avoid gaping with my mouth open. He strides forward, confidence oozing from every inch of his neatly pressed suit to his perfectly polished shoes. I stare at the shoes longer than I should. He ushers me in. I murmur an inaudible ‘Thanks’ and set my eyes on the Holy Grail. I have dreamt of this moment for years. Right from the moment I started thinking of myself as a girl with sartorial sense, I knew I had to come here once in my life. And now I was here. One of the Holy Trinity of shoe designers- Christian Louboutin, Manolo Blahnik and Jimmy Choo. And I was standing in the Jimmy Choo store. Hyperventilation ensued. 14


FASHION My love affair with shoes started when I was seven. A chance shopping expedition to the market led me to see the most perfect pair of shoes I had seen in my entire life. Yes, I was a tad melodramatic. They were beautiful, and I was a connoisseur even then, little black ballerinas with a perfectly placed copper bow on the toes. I was in lust. Remember our fascinations in childhood? We knew our life would be incomplete without a certain object and we would obsess fanatically about it. But those shoes weren’t meant to be mine. I sulked, I cried and I wallowed in self-pity. But as it is with lust, it fades. Better shoes followed and I forgot about them. But as it is, you never forget your first lust. Jimmy Choo entered my life when I was battling with my teenage ghosts. Between identity crisis, studies and trying to make sense of my life, I met Carrie Bradshaw. I was nothing like her. I didn’t have four female rock-solid friends who would support me come what may. I didn’t dress up every day as if I had to walk on the runway any moment. But I loved shoes. I had suppressed my love for shoes - especially heels - because it was impractical. It was pointless. Where would I wear them? But I saw her closet and I had an epiphany. It frankly doesn’t matter if I could wear staggering heels or not: I wanted them. Like a little sparrow collecting grains for further use, I started buying shoes. Of course I wanted the Jimmy Choos, the Blahniks and the Louboutins. But I couldn’t afford them. But I treated all my shoes the same.They became extensions of my mood. Feeling feisty? Bring out the extremely dangerous and pointy red pumps. Feeling chirpy? Time to slip into those yellow wedges. It was the building of a collection, of an inheritance. My shoe collection may not be as vast as other fellow shoe addicts (to you my friends, chapeau!) but every shoe has been bought because of a certain mood or moment. Like a chain smoker who doesn’t need an excuse to light up a cigarette, I really don’t look for a reason to buy shoes. Is it unhealthy? Probably to my father’s bank balance. But before you commit me to an institution, let me assure you, my identity doesn’t depend on my shoes. My shoes just tend to be a reflection of my mood that particular day. Every shoe is an investment, ladies and gentlemen. Notice those rich investment bankers strutting around in sharp three piece suits from Brioni? Ever seen them wearing tattered, old sandals from Bata? Or what about Katrina Kaif? Ever seen those legs in Crocs (can we ban YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

them?)? Shoes pretty much can make or break your outfit. You can probably wear a custom made Alexander McQueen but if you wear something absurd with it, it may eventually give you the title of the ‘weirdo.’ You need an eye for the detail. It isn’t exactly astrophysics to figure out that a black shoe will definitely go with a black dress. But the question is what kind of a shoe? Loafers? Pumps? Stilettos? Wedges? Brogues? Peep toes? The options are unlimited. You need to know your own legs to know what to wear and when. Interesting print skirt? Select a color and wear the shoes accordingly. Short stubby legs? Forget sandals as they cut off at your ankle and make your legs look shorter. Want a touch of the androgynous? Brogues are your best friend. Coming back to the Jimmy Choos. Did she buy them? Did she faint after seeing the prices? Did she find a pair in her size? Oh, the drama! Let me rescue you from this tension and tell you I did buy them! (Author does a little twirl on the spot) My first pair of Jimmy Choos! The store in Mumbai isn’t as well stocked as the Delhi one because I got the reply ‘Oh, the Delhi store has it’ for the pieces I requested but it’s a start. It’s a big start. You think Manolos for the 25th birthday might happen? Keep praying for me and watching this spot for more! P. S. - Contrary to belief, the Jimmy Choos I purchased are very basic leather shoes but worth every penny because of the extremely good design and craft. Trust me on this!

ABOUT THE WRITER: In her 20s, Shikha Pandey is an unemployed sartorial scribe. She dispenses fashion advice by the lot and is aiming to tackle world problems, one bad dress at a time. She is also known to rant about tacky outfits and dressing dilemmas. 15




Get The Look! Fashion, is nothing but personality we carry on us. A person’s clothing - knowingly or unknowingly - inspires someone. And when we talk about fashion, inspiration or clothing the first thing comes to our mind is our very own Bollywood actors. So, YSM gives you tips to follow your celebrity when it comes to the style factor. Doll up with a short bright coloured cotton dress with straight hair, minimal make-up and colour co-ordinated shoes and handbag.

Model: Esha Singh Hair Stylist: Rashmi Merai Make-up: Ujwala Ghag Photographer: Ninad Samant

This is the look Kareena Kapoor carries in most of her movies. A look that gives you comfort and style in a summer dress.



FASHION Elegant earthy coloured full-sleeved top teamed up with palazzo style trousers and heels. Nude make-up with bright lip colour complimented with a hand bag and minimal accessories.

Model:Priyanka Hair Stylist: Rashmi Merai Make-up: Ujwala Ghag Photographer: Ninad Samant

This classy and stylish look is inspired from style icon Sonam Kapoor. A little inspiration from her and you will be at yor best at parties



The cute and bubbly Genelia D’Souza Deshmukh, inspired this look. Party, movies or dinner a tweak here and there and you are good to go! YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Model: Kirti Chhajer Hair Stylist: Rashmi Merai Make-up: Ujwala Ghag Photographer: Ninad Samant

Shorts, jacket, boots with chunky accessories. Dramatic eyes and nude lips. Complete the look with messy curls.


Denims, round neck t-shirt layered with a half-sleeved cotton shirt and canvas shoes.

Model: Rohit Raghav Hair Stylist: Rashmi Merai Make-up: Ujwala Ghag Photographer: Ninad Samant

Kunal Kapoor has been spotted in this look often.This is quite a safe style to carry.



Abhay Deol is known for carrying off this rich and smark look. Don this look and you will be the eye candy of the party. YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Model: Hitesh Bhatia Hair Stylist: Rashmi Merai Make-up: Ujwala Ghag Photographer: Ninad Samant

Jeans, white shirt , casual tie and sneakers to complete the look.


This is the look carried by actor Imran Khan. He always carries a comfortable warddrobe off screen. With it’s cool feel, this is the perfect outfit for every guy in India.


Model: Gurjot Gugu Hair Stylist: Rashmi Merai Make-up: Ujwala Ghag Photographer: Ninad Samant

Comfy T-shirt, short cargos pants, flip flops and sling pouch.




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Promoting Yourself Is Awful. Dancer, actor, singer, she’s done it all. YSM in conversation with the talented and beautiful Aditi Rao Hydari… 24

YSM: You started your Bharatnatyam training at a very early age. Tell us about it? Aditi Rao Hydari: I was 5 when I asked my mum to take me to dance class. My teacher asked her to bring me back after a year as I was too young and children’s bones are too soft at that age. I was obviously stubborn because I would land up at class everyday to watch and sing with the teacher... After a few weeks my teacher relented and started teaching me. You are a disciple of the acclaimed dancer Leela Samson. What is the most important thing she has ever YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

told to you? I call her Leela Akka and she has been like a mother. I have learned much more than just dance from her; just being in her presence imbibes the little things that no one can actually teach you: your relationship towards your art, towards artists, discipline. The one thing she always told me which has helped me a lot is that neither praise nor criticism should be a burden. Both must be accepted with grace and lightness if you want to keep learning and growing as an artist, and in life.


Your first film Sringaram won many awards, including 3 national awards, and your role and performance in that film won much acclaim. Tell us about that experience. It was all destiny. The director of Sringaram (Saradha Ramanathan) saw me dancing in Chennai and she approached me saying that I resembled Shobhana and asked me whether I would like to test for a film about a devadasi. I was leaving for London for a month so I declined the offer. But my work permit didn’t reach on time and my visa didn’t come through. Saradha found out and called me. A week later I was signed on for a double role in a language (Tamil) I didn’t know at all! I 25

felt like a baby being thrown in the deep end of a pool, but it was great to start like that. Some amazing people worked on this film because they believed in it – Thotta Tharani, the painter, did the art direction; Madhu Ambat, who has won many awards, did the cinematography. I also got to work with Saroj Khan, and as a dancer that was a real blessing. She won the National Award for Best Choreography and she sweetly always tells people that it’s my award. Being a Bharatnatyam-based movie was it easy for you to perform so easily? Or is it that acting comes to you so naturally? I think some kids have a drama queen gene and I am one of those! I’ve always loved the camera; I would immediately dance better when guests came to watch at my dance class. I never realised it but I admit to my love for performance and drama. Dance helps me a lot because of the discipline, also it helps to train your mind and heart to feel certain things and to switch on and off very quickly. Another thing I believe is that practice, riyaz, is a quiet process, never a show technique. Be vulnerable and open, spontaneous and effortless in front of an audience and the camera. Your first three films in Bollywood were very versatile roles… I didn’t have the luxury to choose from a huge bag of goodies, but I took the best of the permutations and combinations that were offered. I chose quality, even if I was the second lead with 5 scenes. I wanted to be part of an aesthetic journey, one that I had conviction in and that’s the only choice I was able to make. Now, hopefully, I will be luckier. I am being offered 26


interesting stuff in lead roles. So I’m keeping my fingers crossed.. You sang for the first time for a song in London Paris New York. What made you take the leap? I’m not a trained singer but my mother is a classical singer and has kindly given me some good genes! Ali (Zafar), (producers) Goldie Behl and Shrishti Arya heard me hum and asked me to sing the first day that I met them. I made a big fuss but ended up singing and they asked me to record it. It was as simple as that. I am very happy that Ali made me sing because it has opened up a whole new world for me. Every actor’s career is shaped by their choice in movies. Which cinema do you feel easy to fit in: Commercial or Parallel? Commercial or mass appeal films or parallel or multiplex films are based on business and the market. Both can be commercially viable if mounted correctly. I’d like to be able to do both as long as its good cinema, quality cinema, stuff I will always be proud of that I did for the right reason. Ideally, one each in a year.


“ I chose quality,

even if I was the second lead with 5 scenes.

Of all your roles, which do you like best? Which one do you think you could have done better? I loved Ye Saali Zindagi for its tension of passion, spunk and vulnerability and I loved London Paris New York because it made me what I’ve always wanted to be - a Hindi movie heroine with songs, dances and a fabulous acting part. As an artist, I believe that at ‘that moment’ if you’ve given your hundred percent then you’ve been honest to your role. I’ve done all my work like that, but when I watch it I always feel I could do it better




or differently and that is natural because that’s the way I will learn and grow. What is the most difficult aspect of being an actor? Promotions! Promoting the film is fine but promoting yourself is awful. Delhi or Bombay? Delhi for family and food, and Mumbai for its energy, work ethic and lovely people. Your inspiration? My mother and anyone who works with passion and love and lives their life with grace and dignity, also Audrey Hepburn (and they look alike!). Rakesh Omprakash Mehra He lets actors be, he gives you an open field to perform. He gave me an old world role. His reference was Jaya Bhaduri and I loved it. It could have been a full film on its own is what many people said after they watched the film. Sharada Ramanathan She trusted me with a double role in my very first film that too in a language I didn’t know because she felt she saw purity in me. That’s the quality she was looking for. The rest, she said, can be worked upon. Irrfan Khan He is the most amazing actor. He is always vulnerable and in that way owns every single frame of every single scene that he does. He turns the scene on its head and does it in a way you would never think of doing it and that where he is a true master. People who you admire My mum, my teacher, Shah Rukh Khan for his ability to make the nation fall in love with him, Aamir Khan for being Aamir Khan,Vidya Balan for finding herself and believing in her journey, Madhuri dixit for dancing from her soul. YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


Classical dancers - Leela Samson, Priyadarshini Govind.

Pass time:

Yoga, singing, dancing, cooking, reading, watching movies.


Magic realism, Marquez, Allende, Amy tan, Orhan Pamuk


I enjoy them all. Love Actually, Pan’s Labyrinth, Life Is Beautiful, Black Swan, 500 Days Of Summer, Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, Andaaz Apna Apna, Bunty Aur Babli, Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi, Omkara, Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara.


Currently Thehree Si Zindagi, otherwise Indian and western classical, reggae, rock... long list.



More Than Just A Pretty Face


Logon ka naam unke “kaam se hota hai, mera

The Hindi film industry is said to be known as a male dominated industry. The hero is the main pillar of the film. Lately with films like Wanted, Dabangg, Singham, Ghajini, Ra.One etc. you believe that there is some truth hidden in the myth of the word ‘male dominated industry’. But there are many actresses who rule the industry hands down. And this article is a small tribute to few most talented, lovable and beautiful actresses.


badnaam hoke hua.

idya Balan was the unanimous winner for Best Actress in 2012 with her filning The Dirty Picture. In an era of sci-fi films, bikini toting actresses, big budget flicks, size zero obsessions, lavish sets, dominance of the Khans, Kumars and Kapoors, Vidya Balan fit none of the above bills. She is simple, beautiful and curvy, but an incredibly talented and natural actress.

Vidya debuted in bollywood in 2005 and with her first film; Parineeta while she may not have become an instant hit, she did prove that she was prepared to wait to become a favourite of critics the audiences, and boy what a favourite she is! While she entered Bollywood with Parineeta, she went on to star in Lage Raho Munna Bhai, Bhool Bhulaiyaa, Paa, Ishqiya, No One Killed Jessica, The Dirty Picture and Kahaani. But who is the real Vidya? Where is she hidden? Is she in the mother of 12 year old boy suffering from progeria? The sister awaiting justice? The actress fighting for survival in a man’s world? A wife waiting for revenge? What we realize is that Vidya has carved a niche in Bollywood. She is a brand for herself. Vidya seems to have taken the mantle from her predecessors who proved that women weren’t just the pretty thing to hang on to the arms of their male counterparts.Among them was Tabu. She was the actress of the 90s when the Khans had entered the arena with Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, Hum Aapke Hain Koun?, Dil Toh Pagal Hai, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahi, Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar, Hum Hain Rahi Pyar Ke and so on. While the screen dripped with love stories, this leggy lady blazed her way on the screen with a jaw-dropping performance in Maachis. She continued wowing us with Astitva, Chandni Bar, Maqbool, Filhaal, Cheeni Kum, Virasat, The Namesake and more. Being selective in her roles meant that we rarely get to see this powerhouse of



talent on screen. While most actresses have to raise their voice or show their skin to grab eyeballs, all Tabu has to do is raise her delicate eyebrows. It wouldn’t be wrong to assume that talent runs in the family in this case. After all, aunt Shabana Azmi is quite a prodigy too. Even the legendary filmmaker Satyajit Ray had praised Shabana as one of the finest dramatic actresses of the country.With 5 national awards in her kitty, many Indian awards and international ones, Shabana is one of the most recognizable faces of parallel cinema in India. She also pulled off the feat of winning the National Award for three consecutive years from 19831985 for Arth, Khandhar and Paar. This activist-actor




juggled perfectly between art and commercial cinema with films like Nishant, Mandi, Amar Akbar Anthony, Chor Sipahee, Masoom and more. While she wasn’t an overtly glamorous actress, her malleability on-screen attracted audiences towards her and gave her countless fans. In the same breath we talk about Smita Patil. The dusky Maharashtrian beauty with large, expressive eyes, a sensuous look and fine acting won the hearts of audiences, critics and filmmakers in her times. Even 25 years after her demise, she is still remembered at film festivals, award ceremonies and film academies. Smita made her silver screen debut with Shyam Benegal’s YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Charandas Chor in 1975. In merely a decade, Smita had already worked in more than 75 Hindi and Marathi films. She won the national award twice for Bhumika and Chakra. She was also honored a Padma Shree in 1985. While her association was more with parallel cinema, she was even accepted in commercial cinemas by filmmakers like Raj Khosla, Ramesh Sippy and BR Chopra. Nargis’ film Mother India was the first ever Indian movie submitted to the Academy Awards. She started her silver screen career at the age of 6 in the movie Talash-E-Haq in 1935, but her acting career began in 1942 with Tamanna. She was the leading lady in films like Barsaat, Andaz, Awaara, Deedar, Shree 420 and Chori Chori. The best way



to describe Nargis is to say she started the era of Indian actresses who could portray simple and chic with ease. Indian Cinema is blessed to have such wonderful actresses who are very different from the painted glamorous actresses and still the list of favourites. So move aside candyfluff actresses, these women of substances are here to stay.



I am, I owe it to the theater


An actor, an anchor, a natural entertainer, his passion of acting is visible even when he speaks. When he pauses, his face is filled with expressions every time. As he completes two decades of exemplary acting in various films and theaters across the country, Sachin Khedekar talks about his journey… 32

YSM: Tell us about your journey in the Marathi film industry as well as theatre? Sachin Khedekar: I started around 25 years ago. It’s been an extremely gradual process from theatre to television to films. I have done about 2000 shows in four languages. In television I’ve been part of prime time television shows like Sailaab,Thoda Hai Thode Ki Zarurat Hai and others. I have been out of television for the last 14 years because I hate it and I find it extremely regretful; Watching it and

acting in it as well. I am better off doing theatre and films. I always give preference to Marathi, but I also work in Hindi and other languages. If you had to choose between films and theatre, what would you choose and why? I would choose theatre because that is an actor’s medium. Film belongs to the director; actors do films to reach a larger audience. In theatre you can prepare your own role and you kind of arrive at your (own) performance in front of the YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

You have worked in Marathi, Hindi as well as the south Indian film industry. What do you like and dislike about them? I have worked in one Malayalam film, two Tamil films, one Telugu film and one Gujarati film. My experience in the south is that they are more disciplined. In Malayalam they are willing to see all kinds of subjects. Their actors, like Mohanlal and Mamooty, are more of actors than stars. The Telugu industry is a star driven industry like Bollywood. They keep doing potboilers which looks like star portfolios; you see the same stars in the same things again and again. What was striking about the Tamil industry is that they are more inclined towards Tamil literature. In Marathi, about 80% films made are run of the mill comedies. Films which have worked, like Natrang, Harishchandrachi Factory, Me Shivajiraje Bhosle Bolotoy!, Taryanche Bait, had no comedy in it. So I just wish well for other subjects. Hindi, of course, is a different game. The films here are only pleasing stars and are designed around them. Where do you want to see the Marathi film industry going after 10 years? I really want the run of mill films to take a back seat and see some meaningful cinema; films which are based on our great literature and have some extraordinary acting. When I see Malayalam and Bengali films, how rooted they are to their culture, I want to see such subjects, performances and inputs about the Maharashtrian ethos. YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

When I see Malayalam and Bengali films, how rooted they are to their culture, I want to see such subjects...

audience, you develop it show by show. The live reaction is what I thrive for and it gives me a bigger high.

What contribution has theatre played to establish you as an actor? Everything I am, I owe it to theatre because it’s a great training ground. It’s a great way to get away from your inhabitations, to prepare for a role, to work on your speech. When I went to America as a tourist, I saw Halle Berry in a theater studio training for her role in Catwoman! Of all the plays and movies you’ve done, which ones are close to you? Bose The Forgotten Hero has been the best role I’ve ever done. I did that with Shyam Benegal, so it’s an experience I will always cherish. Mahesh Manjrekar’s Astitva and Me Shivajiraje Bhosle Bolotoy!, Teacher with Ravi Rai, Thoda Hai Thode Ki Zarurat Hai, Sailaab... The fact that I still meet people who tell me “Oh, aap ka woh yaad aata hai (Oh, we remember that show of yours)” means we’ve done something right. Whom do you admire in the young generation of the Marathi film industry? Atul Kulkarni does extremely good work. Among directors, I’ve always

liked Mahesh Manjrekar’s work and have done about 10 films with him. Umesh Kulkarni is outstanding. Kiran Yagnopavit (who directed Sachin in Taryanche Bait) was superb. I like the combination of writer-director more. What would be the most ambitious project you would want to be a part of? I would love to play Shylock in The Merchant Of Venice, but I’m young for it. But I’m all geared up to do Death Of A Salesman in Marathi. Favourite actor: Amitabh Bachchan Favourite actress: Rekha Favourite film: Do Bigha Zamin Favourite play: Dear Liar, Naseeruddin Shah Favourite director: Mahesh Manjrekar Favourite novel: Carpet Baggers by Harold Robbins Favourite writer: Vijay Tendulkar Favourite Marathi actors: Nilu Phule, Sonali Kulkarni (Senior) Favourite Marathi film: Pandu Havaldar Favourite Marathi play: Ashiram Kotwal Film you wish you had been apart of: Vihir, Harishchandrachi Factory 33


The Man Who Made Super Stars Wait When we met him, he struck us with his humility and humbleness, like his professional reputation. A cinematographer with an eye for sleek compositions, vivid colors, exquisite lighting, which has travelled across Indian cinema for last two decades, here are some pearls of wisdom from Ravi. K. Chandran. YSM: Your first film ‘Kilukkampetti’ was in Malayalam, directed by Shaji Kailas. Tell us about it. Ravi. K. Chandran: Shaji Kailas is a very close friend and we have done four films together. During ‘Kilukkampetti’ I was an assistant. It was during a train journey that I met the director and the production manager. They asked me “Can you shoot a film?” and I said yes. At first I thought they were just joking but the next morning they gave me the film, and that’s how my first movie happened. ‘Virasat’ was your first Hindi film. How did you work differently on it? ‘Virasat’ was with Priyadarshan. He is the most visual director. At that time in Hindi cinema, they were not doing that kind of look which we had created in ‘Virasat’. We shot early mornings and evenings to create a warm light effect. Nowadays you have digital intermediate to color correct whatever you have shot but during those days you had to really shoot to get the tones. We used to start the shoot early in the morning from around 4.30 am to 5.00am, and shoot till 9-9.30pm, when the sunlight would tend to slant slightly. Ramchandra Babu is your brother and one of the senior most cameramen in the south Indian film industry; tell us about his contribution in your learning process. My brother is a great influence on me. He’s a painter, a poet, and he won seven film state awards in Kerala and is considered as a cult cinematographer in Kerala. He did his first film when he was 19 years old and when he was still in his second year in film school. He developed a new shooting style and I got introduced to all this automatically because of him. I got exposed to Akira Kurosawa, Satyajit Ray, Godard, Fellini and all the greatest film makers in the world at a very early age. 34

On Mani Ratnam Mani is a very old friend. I can say that because when he did his first two films in Tamil and Malayalam my brother was the DoP, so I know him quite well since then. I became a cameraman and he has become a big director. One fine day he called me to do his Tamil film ‘Kannathil Muthamital’, which has won several awards for me, and also it bagged six national awards. Mani is one director who reinvents himself time to time. People from across the world respect Mani Ratnam; he is a brand himself. On Sanjay Leela Bhansali Sanjay Leela Bhansali is a big artistic director and he’s very meticulous and particular about the looks of the film. He will not compromise even if the hair falls wrongly; he will go for a reshoot. He says, “Once you make a film, its history. You can’t change it, you can’t go back”. He’s a very musically inclined person and an editor himself, so you can see a rhythmic manner in which he directs the actors.You can see an operatic quality in his films. ‘Kilukkampetti’, ‘Virasat’, ‘Dil Chahta Hai’, ‘Yuva’, ‘Black’, ‘Kandukonden Kandukonden’, ‘My Name Is Khan’… the list could make anyone proud. But how do you think the Hindi film industry differs from the south Indian film industry? The Hindi film industry is more organized, more planned but one good thing about the south Indian film industry is that their stories are completely different. Whatever commercial cinema you see is not real south Indian films. They’re completely different. ‘Sight and Sound’ - the most prestigious magazine in the world - quoted Tamil film ‘Subramaniyapuram’ as one of the top 150 films in the world for last year. None of the Hindi films featured YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


We shoot for another cameraman and not for the film. We shoot to impress the other DOPs.


PEOPLE in that. There they’re not worried if the costume is good or the hair style is good. Here it plays a very big part. In the south, you can see audiences clapping and screaming when the cinematographer’s name appears on the screen, be it P C Sreeram, or Santosh Sivan. Here the audience doesn’t know about cinematography because nobody writes about it. For a cult film like ‘Dil Chahta Hai’ they wrote too much about the hairstylist, who was doing her first film and Arjun Baseem for styling the clothes. But they never wrote about the cinematographer who captured those looks. In the south we DoPs are invited to present the best actor award to stars like Vikram and Surya. Here, I don’t get an invitation for my own award! It’s a pathetic state here. Which has been the biggest compliment you’ve ever received from somebody? And who was that person? When I did my first Hindi film, ‘Virasat’,Amitabh Bachchan wrote a letter appreciating my work in that film. I have framed and kept it with me. When I did ‘Black’, many DoPs including P C Sreeram, Govind Nihalani, Binod Pradhan, Santosh Sivan called and appreciated my work. As a cinematographer there is a joke which they normally tell, “We shoot for another cameraman and not for the film”. We shoot to impress the other DoPs. Tell us more about the letter from Mr. Bachchan. In the first letter he said he had seen the film, it was extremely well shot and he was hoping we got work together soon. When he received an award for ‘Black’, he appreciated every crew member but forgot to mention my name. It was the first time he was appearing on stage after hospitalization so I knew he forgot. But the very next day he talked about me in a paper and cut the news article and marked it. He sent me an apology letter with that for forgetting to mention my name and that it was an honour to work with me. After talking to Abhishek (Bachchan) I met Amitabh during a shoot at Film City. He was again apologetic. I’ve framed those letters and kept it in my house along with the awards. Tell us about your favorite cinematographers and their work which has inspired you. Subroto Mitra who did Satyajit Ray’s film, ‘Charulata’; is a great inspiration. So many films of Ashok Mehta… And I really love Binod Pradhan’s work in ‘Parinda’, ‘Mission Kashmir’, ‘Devdas’, ‘Rang De Basanti’; his work is extraordinary, he always he reinvents himself. Santosh Sivan: till ‘Raavan’, any of this work is very good. P C 36

Sreeram is a big trend setter who has done Mani Ratnam films like ‘Nayagan’, ‘Mouna Ragam’ and ‘Agni Natchathiram’. I also like V K Murty and Guru Dutt films. I like my brother’s work, Ravjeev Menon’s ‘Bombay’. Among the younger generation, I like Ayanaka Bose,V Manikandan, Sudeep Chaterjee… these guys are doing really well. Anil Mehta is extraordinary. A lot of cinematographers here in Bombay are doing well. In the newer lot, R Madhi of ‘Shaitan’ fame, Rajeev Ravi… their work is very good. What would you want to change in the Hindi film industry? More and more youngsters should be introduced. I would like to change then the star system. In the south, they’ve broken it last year by introducing some 50 new talents like new actors, music directors, directors, sound engineers. They should start doing lower budget films which will be widely appreciated, than this regular huge budget films, singing and dancing. Tell us about Shah Rukh Khan is a very friendly person on the set and very open to people’s ideas, so it’s very easy to work with him. He doesn’t behave like a star, that’s his quality. Karan Johar is the easiest director I’ve ever worked with. He’s very open very friendly, welcoming new ideas from an assistant director also and he’s very clear about what he wants. He’ll get the job done without hurting other people’s egos. Aamir Khan is a very well read person. He’s on time, very professional and he never interfered in the three films I had worked with him.

Favorite actor as a cinematographer: Shah Rukh khan and Surya. Favorite actress as a cinematographer: Kajol Favorite director: Mani Ratnam Movies which you feel you should have been part of: Chak De, India!, Rang De Basanti, Dev D, Shaitan YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


No One Likes To Be Hated! Rashami Desai is best known as Tapasya Thakur from the popular television soap Uttaran. The 25 year old actress made many Indian women’s blood boil, with her impeccable performance as the antagonist. But Rashami fails to evoke the same hatred in-person and letting her heart out.

YSM: So tell us about your childhood. Rashami Desai: I’ve been born and brought up in Mumbai. My mother is a teacher here. I love to dance; I used to learn dancing during school. Later on I even taught dancing. I was very interested in singing as well but didn’t get the time to pursue it. How did you start your career in television? I never thought that I would ever become an actress. I’ve never got the feeling that I’m very pretty, and I’m not just saying this to sound modest. Even today when pretty girls pass by me, I envy their beauty. It’s all destiny. It’s all fate; you’ve no control over things that happen in and around you. My mother always wanted me to become an actress YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

or a choreographer because I love to dance. She would always tell me that you’re very talented and you should use your talent and not let it go waste. After contemplating over it, I finally decided to give it a try. I started off with regional films after getting done with my diploma. I just gave three auditions and got selected in the third one.They told me not to go anywhere else for an audition because mostly I would get selected there. That’s how I landed my first soap, Pari Hu Main, when I was 18 years old. I played a double role in that. How does it feel to look at yourself in the silver screen? I must say it’s a really good feeling. The competition is very tough and it’s very hard to survive in the industry. Making


TELEVISION a name here is a very difficult. Despite all these factors, having made a name here gives me a very proud feeling. Even my family is very proud of my achievements. It’s truly an amazing feeling to know that people are saying good things about you. It reassures you that you’re doing good work and people are appreciating it. People keep asking my mother about my well being and it makes her really happy to answer them.

tele-serials. So the audience which watch this are home; so this is what happens to them. They connect with that person – whoever it is. If I’m a housewife and I’m sitting down to watch a serial after I’ve finished all my work and my mother in-law comes and shouts at me, then I’ll connect with the serial because that’s how my mother-in-law talks to me. But I won’t answer back to my mother-in-law, so we have to show unfair things are happening to one.

How would you describe yourself as an actress? Did you take any formal training? I feel that there is still room for improvement. I haven’t reached the epitome yet. I still have a long way to go. I’m working with so many brilliant actors like Pratima Kazmi, Vaishali Thakkar, Ayub Khan, Pragati Mehra and Gaurav Chopra. Looking at their work I feel like it’ll take me a lot of time to reach there. I’m still not a complete actress.

Who’s your favorite actress in TV and in film? I like Kangana Ranaut, Priyanka Chopra and Shweta Tiwari.

How did you land the role of Tapasya? I was in Malaysia when I got a call that the girls in Uttaran were getting older. Though I told them that I was in Malaysia, they insisted that I come and give them an audition. They offered me the role of Ichcha’s character and I even auditioned for it, but they asked me to audition for Tapasya’s role as well. My skin is very fair for Ichcha and they wanted a dark skinned girl, so I wasn’t fit for the character. I was playing the positive lead, cute and smart girl in the regional movies that I was doing. Even my role in Pari Hoon Main had gray shades. Now this negative character was something I really wanted to do as I had never done it before. I talked to my cousin sister, who is a doctor, about people who are so possessive about their things. After shooting for 5 months, everyone knew me as Tapasya and not Rashami! How’s your chemistry with your co-actors, other than nadish do you hang out with them outside the sets? I hardly get time to hang out with my friends and go out for dinners, but I make sure if I’m going out with the girls that I invite Tina as well.We both share a good chemistry.We go out for shopping at times. Do you envy any of the contemporary actresses? No, never. I always tell myself that I’ll work hard and take care of myself. I never wish that I was Aishwariya Rai or Priyanka Chopra. I’m not Aishwariya, I’m not Miss World, but it’s all in you, it’s how you want to be. If I start taking care of my body, if I start taking care of Rashami Desai properly, let her sleep, if I give her the things she needs then she’ll look the prettiest.

Today’s youth, are disinterested in these serials and makefun of. What should be done to revive the interest of the youth? I think the youth themselves don’t know what they want. They cannot connect with television because they have an age difference. They don’t want to see the saas-bahu saga. There is a show Navya which I think has the youth hooked on. I personally don’t watch soaps.When I get home, I watch FRIENDS or Navya. They want to see something practical. Tell us about your married life? Married life is nice, different and decent, and full of fun. Nandish and I still stay like friends. We never feel like we’re married and now I am Mrs. Sandhu and Mr. Sandhu has a wife because I live at my place and he lives at his.We’ll actually get married this year, then we’ll have our griha-pravesh and we’ll start our married life. Has your life changed with Nandish? A lot! I always used to think that work is everything… I just drive and come home. But then he nudged me to meet friends. Nandish is a very good cook and I’d always eat with him whenever he cooked for me. He taught me a lot of things like behaving in a mature way. I’ve changed my life, even my family members look at me and say that.

If not acting, then what? Airhostess. Where do you see yourself 10 years down the line? A good mother and a good housewife. What if you lose your phone? Nothing, I have a backup. If Nandish forgets your birthday? I’ll kill him. Don’t write it, he can never forget my birthday.

9. You’ve been a part of melodramatic serials - Pari Hoon Main and Uttaran. Is it a conscious decision? No, my audience is like whatever they see. They make sure that to finish their supper and then get on with




Have A Drink On Me!


magine you are an 18 year old, and at the dinner table, your concerned parents ask about your future, and you tell them that you want to become a bartender. Not everyone has the guts to have this conversation. Not every one’s parents are against the idea, but gone are the days of discriminating it as a “Sharab pilane ka kaam”. Now-adays bartending is an uber-cool career for the youth that’s well received in metro cities. Bartending is a job that offers loads of excitement and fun as a large part of your job takes place at parties. So your job also includes associating with a lot of people, making them happy, impressing them with your tricks, showing them variety in cocktails and even a small pep talk every now and then. Successful bartenders have a passion for their work, good knack for understanding people and their tastes, and wide knowledge about the variety of drinks and their reaction towards the mixes, and for those who have the ability to perform tricks with glasses, need good hand-eye coordination for executing it. When we met Glen Furtado, a senior bartender working with Hard Rock Café Mumbai, he said “For me bartending is just full of fun, sometime because of the excitement it gives. I never feel as if I am working here, it’s so cool”. After completing his Hotel Management degree and training from a bartending school Glen pursued bartending just for fun. “I enjoyed the feeling it gave when I used to mix drinks in some functions. For me, being 22 I just want to enjoy two years of youth and I was prepared to pursue other things after that.” Assistant bartender Sylvester YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

wanted to become a bartender since he was trainee in a hotel management institute. For him it’s a kind of passion by which he hopes to make it big in the bartending scene.These two striking differences can be in various bartenders. Some are a part of it for the fun and experience, while there are those who are very passionate about it. Some are college students who incidentally get glued to the art and now pursue it part time for their pocket money. Bartenders are pseudo psychologists without a degree. People expect two things from them: a good drink and a refreshing chat. They have

to understand the mood of the client, when s/he orders a drink. Some bartenders read the tone of the client by the choice of his/her drink… the list goes on. One of the bartenders we bumped into teaches his boys the motto, “The client is God”. No matter what, a bartender must carry a smile on his face and be polite to his client. Cocktails are where bartenders can win guests by suggesting new mixes, sometimes perfectly mixing clients’ favorite drinks. Furtado explains that they spend a lot of time discussing mixes and developing new creative ideas. Many companies offer training and international exposure for bar-

Amit Naik, Hard Rock Cafe


tenders, which add to the creative aspect of the job. It puts up a question, whether this job is gold or just glitter. The bar manager of a popular bar has almost 7 years of experience is working with two big lounges, is in charge of the working of a popular bar and also trains all his bartending team. But when he looks back, the one thing that he misses is his normal life. He doesn’t have time to relax with his family as he works the night shift. When he comes home in the morning, they have already left. Sunday is his only day when he can spend time with his family, girlfriend and friends. It makes him wonder, is it all worth it? Temptation. With the amount of glamour, it’s no surprise that this deadly sin raises its ugly head as well. Be it the amount of money flowing in and the customary tips that they receive, or the women who they encounter, there’s no dearth of temptation here. Another bartender Amit Naik says “It’s very serious thing, and as a supervisor, I have to make sure that my boys understand how to handle these temptations.” The key is to teach them to enjoy it but with a

Glen Furtado, Bartender at Hard Rock Cafe

strict professionalism. It’s a huge challenge to maintain their friendship and balance professional ethics with it. Glen Gomes, a bartender at Manchester United Bar, takes it as a part of his job. “I can’t say no to my guest’s hand of friendship, and there is a white line. When things go out of hand, I have my manager to report who will take care of it.”

Customers are a different challenge altogether. Furtado explains that there are many times when guests have crossed their limits by swearing or behaving aggressively. But he always has to reply with a “Sorry” or “Thank you”. If things go out of hand, it’s the bouncer or the manager who has to take care of things. So how are their lives shaping up? Gone are the times when people look down on bartending. As we get more social, with the boom of parties, bartending is seen as a colourful option for a career. To prove it, Amit rattles off a list of people who have tried their hand at bartending after seeing him. Bartending is a welcome option for someone who wants to do it for fun, but also for someone who wants to make it big. It’s all about one’s ability to have a deep focus towards this art and gauge happiness and sadness.

Glen Gomes, Bartender at Manchester United Bar






BACK IN BLAKC! Reinhardt Dias (Guitars)

BLAKC: We have been to 14-15 cities all across India now, have played almost around 97 shows in these past 5 years. Some of the highlights for us would be playing shows like Independence Rock, Campus Rock Idols, Great Indian Rock, Assam Tour, almost opening for Metallica and much more. We have also released our debut album in 2009 which sold around 1000 copies.

How has your music grown over the years?

The band’s first album was very simple. The music had a very honest vibe to it. The songs were composed in a very short period of time. Basically Shawn would write the lyrics, based on which we would think of composing the song. The second phase of our music has come in

Roop Thomas (Bass)

An alternate band from Mumbai, Blackattainment is in its fifth year now. Shawn Pereira (vocals), Roop Thomas (bass), Reinhardt Dias (guitars), Anish Menon (guitars) and Shishir (Tao) Thakur (drums) talk about their music, gigs and big plans for the future. 42

YSM: A short peep at your journey over these six years?

Shawn Pereira (Vocals)

our second album which is due to release this year. It has taken more time but it is a conscious attempt made by all of us to contribute to the writing process. The thought process of composition has become slightly more progressive. Everyone in the band is finding their own space, which is really important for any musician.

Which was your first big performance?

Definitely has to be Independence Rock.We were barely 6 months old and we were in the national finals on the big stage playing at a festival that was of the greatest stature in the Indian rock scene.

Tell us about your first album Choking On A YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


do this full time.

Our first album was so significant because we did it all by ourselves and we sold all the copies we printed! The better thing is that we’ve played over 50 shows since the release 2 years ago. That’s a pretty awesome thing. Loads more people know our music now and they even sing at shows. It also gave us a perspective on how to produce and release an album, where to put it and how to basically get the maximum (mileage) out of the album.

How is the band scene in the country today, and what’s the difference between how it was when you guys started?

We don’t really know. Our perspective of the scene has changed. Mumbai isn’t that different but now we’ve discovered 13 more cities so we understand a lot more Shishir (Tao) Thakur (Drums)

about the band scene. It’s definitely growing; there’s more bands, more shows, more movies about bands… This is a good time to be around.

How do you guys jam? And how do you manage the finances and preparations for shows?

We pretty much save over 50% of all our band income (which is working out to a fair amount, enough to take care of our album at least). On an average, we jam for about 4 hours a week. Each band member handles different aspects of the band: planning the album, artwork, booking and managing shows, etc. We’re all able to hold jobs and do this part time, but it’s getting tougher because there is a lot of work to do. Hopefully that’s a good thing so that soon we’ll actually be able to YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Did you guys have tough times as a band?

We’ve had a lot of shows where different things have got botched up: transport, stay, sound, money, the works.And now we don’t have to deal with most of these problems, so in retrospect, those were just part of the package. Releasing the album was tough, but again, something we just got together and overcame. It’s been almost smooth sailing the last five years and we’re really grateful for that.

Your music is always based on the tone of vocal mixed in between the layers of guitars: Tell us about your style.

Not something we think about too much about. What happens in the jam room is the result of Anish Menon (Guitars)

all five members doing what they want to. We have a lot of fights to figure out what the vibe of the song will be, but eventually everyone gets onto the same page (somewhat) and the song happens.

Where do your guys see the band in future?

Some married, some might be in jail for a bit… hopefully we’ll all be alive and playing music. Albums happen the moment we have material and money. The next one is coming mid 2012.

Any parting words for your fans?

For our fans, we love you guys, you all are the reason why we are where we are, and why we want to do this. For people hearing about us for the first time, spread our music, come for our shows, and join the party! 43

Engineers By Day, Rockstars By Night. FROM L-R

AMMO ANGOM: Vocals & Guitars An engineer by profession; (also loves driving around in the band wagon, clicking snaps & cooking funky chicken.) AMIT MHATRE: Drums & percussions A disc jockey by profession; (when not playing music, loves eating sizzlers & listening to music at the loudest possible volume.) SUSMITA KAMATH: Bass An engineer by profession; (when not playing music, loves buying flowers, laughing & stargazing.) JIMIT KANSARA: Vocals & Guitars An engineer by profession; (loves roaming around the city, moon walking & making spontaneous plans for just about anything.)

Mumbai is known as the City of Dreams and the story of the following four people is nothing but a story of passion and dreams that drives this city. YSM focuses on the Indie rock band 1.2. 44

A band that‘s made up of three engineers, and one DJ. When you ask them about the name 1.2, they don’t speak science; for them it’s just 1.2 billion people of India whom they want to reach out to, without any barriers. Their music is all about life, love, fun, themselves and India. Three of the band members were engineers working in Larsen and Toubro Limited in Mumbai. They

had one thing in common: they got bored with their daily 9 to 5 routine life . They took a chance to look beyond their professional responsibilities. They wanted more of a sense of achievement than making their way out of choking traffic or ticking off their lists on their printouts. When Ammo set up a music forum in their office, Jimit and Susmita joined in. Thus began their journey YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

together, which ended up in the birth of their band 1.2 in September 2010. The team was completed in June 2011 when Amit took charge of the skins in June 2011. When you take a closer look into this cluster and their musical traits, this band leans towards rock music, pop, and progressive jazz ,Their taste towards these genres is visible in their performances and their final sound. Their Indie package comes along with multiple elements, sleek instrumentation and simple lyrics. The band sings only in Hindi as they feel that it connects them more effectively with the youth and masses. On some days they meet up at 1 am to jam and go on till 4 am.This gang of mechanical engineers, has to reach office at 9 am but DJ Amit goes to work in the evenings. Though their day job is their primary source of income, they make sure that money matters do not mitigate their music or practice. We hear their first two singles Ganpati Bappa and Adhoora Hoon, which is also available on their MySpace profile which they recorded these in their home recording set up.


Their recent single, released on 26 January 2012, was their first professionally recorded track. It’s not difficult to notice a vast improvement in their sound. Goes to show that with the necessary support, they have got it in them to bring out tracks with their signature style. Any band that connects with their audiences through their originality always gets a memorable place in their heart. Band 1.2 has done so, right from their first gig in Zenzi (Mumbai) to their biggest show as the Times Music Superstars’ finalist.

When asked to share their experiences and growth, Susmita says, “Consisting of all self taught musicians, we have grown up purely through our experiences in the music scene. We were always confident that our music would be liked by many. However, things were not always great and the band had to face its share of downs. Our passion and tenacity kept us going and we went on improving. Competitions were the most effective platform for us to gain visibility.” “Even though going professional was our ultimate aim, we went through a natural growth process to get in tune with ourselves and to jam as a band. At the same time we were wary that depending financially on music might curtail our creative freedom and the fun associated with it”, adds Ammo. We can’t call them ‘professionals’, but when we see their track record, attitude and the way they have improved their sound and the treatment of their tracks, this band is definitely on the right track to be one of the most successful Indie bands of the country. And they are going to be featured in an upcoming Hindi feature film, co-produced by the prestigious NFDC!



A Chance Meeting


he Rajdhani Express had come in a few minutes ago. I tugged at my heavy trolley suitcase and made my way through the crowded platform. My bag wobbled on the uneven platform and I cursed myself for not having taken the services of a coolie. My ‘I can do it by myself’ attitude hadn’t panned out too well for me this morning. At 18, I did not want Dad dropping me off at the station, so I had hailed a cab, got stuck in Mumbai’s infamous morning traffic yet thankfully made it to the station in the nick of time. “I shouldn’t have packed so much”, I mourned balancing by backpack and suitcase just then a wheel gave away. Too late! Two weeks of bliss I reminded myself and pulled on. Delhi winter, delicious hot food, unlimited pampering by my grandparents, was just 24 hours away. “Do you need some help with that bag?” I heard a deep voice coming from a stranger standing a little away. I bet he had caught the crooked expression on my face as I tried to pull my bag up the two steps climbing into the bogie. “Yes please”, I said instantaneously, not caring who was lending me a helping hand. Any help was welcome. His hand slid next to mine and firmly gripped the leather handle. I looked up to find a tall young boy dressed in a green T-shirt, beige cargos and flip flops standing next to me. Short hair, neatly spiked in a Mohawk, and light brown eyes that made me wonder if I was dreaming at this hour in the morning. The railway station was the last place I had imagined I would run into a cute boy. “What’s your seat number?” he asked snapping me out of my temporary daze. “Umm…25”, I hesitantly replied. He walked ahead to find my seat and I quietly followed him. “Here you go.”, he said and slipped my bag in a safe corner. I thanked him with a dreamy smile, my mind blank about what would be the appropriate thing to say next. “Are you travelling to Delhi alone?” Thankfully he spoke first. I nodded affirmatively. Why was I being honest with this stranger! “By the way I am Nirav. I am travelling with a few friends. We are in S13. Join us if you can. Aah…That reminds me, I better get running because their tickets are with me.”, he hurriedly said, shook my hand and made a dash for the exit. Had that been for real I wondered and settled in my seat only to hear his voice from across the window.

ABOUT THE WRITER: CAROL JEAN TAURO is dancer, an adventure seeker, a travel junkie, a foodie, an avid reader and a storyteller. 46

“Hi again…I did not get your name”, his curious gaze made me blush. “Kavya”, I coyly replied “I will see you soon Kavya”, he smiled and rushed to find his friends. After spending the entire morning and afternoon trying to read a Mills & Boons novel and listening to music all I wished for was that Nirav would come by. I shifted uneasily in my berth surprised at my eagerness to meet a stranger I had known so briefly. No point shying from the truth, I wanted to see him YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

again. “Was that 11 or 13? Damn... I cursed myself for my inability to recollect the number. A harmful evening stroll I rationalized and left in the direction of the coaches S11/ S13. A few meters down the aisle, I took a U turn, suddenly conscious of the stupidity of my actions. Maybe it is not meant to be, I tried to convince myself as I made my way to the exit to sit with my ipod and watch the splendid sunset. After an animated debate between my heart and my head, I decided against acting on my instincts. “Don’t act like a fool Kavya”, I reprimanded myself loudly. An adolescent girl nearby chuckled as she caught me speaking to myself. I smiled at her, holding back my contempt. A couple of years more and she would be doing the same. The beautiful scenery distracted me temporarily till I felt a tap on my shoulder. Fearing the worst, I slowly turned around expecting to see a ticket checker. I had a history of getting nervous every time I came across a TC even though I had a ticket on me. “Do you like coffee?”, I saw Nirav standing right behind me, balancing two cups of coffee and shielding his eyes from the sharp evening rays of the sun. I nodded and smiled, words not coming to my rescue. I wanted to pinch myself to believe that this was true as I saw him plonk down next to me. “I was hoping that you would come by during the course of the day but when you didn’t turn up, I thought I should come to get you myself.You are quite a shy girl, aren’t you?” he smiled. “Well actually I couldn’t have left my luggage unattended so…” I replied immediately trying to fake the most credible excuse even as my heart danced with delight. “Hmm…so if I take care of that headache would you join me for dinner?” he asked unabashedly. The innocence of his question made me blush for a second. It wasn’t the first time I had been asked out to dinner but dinner date in a train was unusual. His charm had me completely hooked.

face and as I repeated the name, it all fell into place. Nirav Pandit, TYBMS, college football captain, ace dramatist and lead guitarist for his college band. He was the much talked about guy in my college and his. This was too strange to be true. “It is already 8pm. Let’s go for dinner” his words brought me back to the conversation. I did not flinch as his fingers gently encircled my slender wrist. He walked ahead making way for me as we dodged vendors and passengers. “Hi Kavya!” his friends welcomed me in unison. Not only were they expecting me but they already knew my name! Dinner was delicious: 30 parathas of 3 different kinds, hot and soft, had been delivered by one of the boy’s aunts at the previous station. She knew the hungry youngsters well. We ate heartily and Nirav even went about distributing the surplus amongst fellow passengers. It was a mini party complete with food, Bollywood songs and jokes to add some spice. “I will be back in 20”, Nirav mentioned to his friends as he decided to escort me to my seat. Twenty minutes stretched into hours as we sat up the whole night chatting in hushed voices and I drifted off to sleep in the early morning hours. “Kavya…wake up. We are going to reach Delhi in half an hour.” Nirav’s voice whispering in my ear woke me from my deep slumber. I rubbed my eyes and squinted to see him casually lean against my berth. I couldn’t help but smile, the previous evening wasn’t a dream after all. The journey soon came to an end; it was time to part ways. “Can I take you on a date?” he asked me that day. “Will you marry me?” he proposed yesterday. Two wonderful weeks in Delhi, a return journey to Mumbai and 5 blissful years of togetherness, love happens in the unlikeliest of places. Touchwood.

“I will think about it”, I tried to act but laughed instead. He knew it was a yes on my end. We sat chatting at the exit for a two long hours. He was a senior in college and studied at the college opposite mine. Since the moment, there was a familiarity about his YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012



Not Forever ~Mad Hearter

“I will never leave you”, he said to her. “You are the one”, he said to her. “I love you so much that I cannot imagine you not being with me”, he said to her. “You come first, even before my family”, he said to her. He said this over and over for seven years. Tonight she lies on her bed, eyes stinging from tears that haven’t dried for hours. She stares at her cell phone with hopeful eyes, obsessively checking her BBM whether the D has changed to R, whether he is “writing a message” Will he write a message that says, “It will always be you and only you and no one else in my life”? It would be a lot better than the last thing she said to him, “I don’t want to be with you.” But it wasn’t the first time she had said it. She had angrily thrown that statement 48

at him so many times before. But all he did then was hold on to her even tighter. She believed him and trusted him so much that she knew she would still have him by her side no matter what. “I want a break up right now”, she had said. All she hoped was that he would hold her tighter this time. But he is still not “writing a message” yet. On a rainy morning in June 2008, with empty cups of coffee witnesses to their conversation, he had said, “Please be mine forever”. She shook her head. They spoke for hours. The waiter constantly glared at them to get his bill cleared. “I understand that you cannot be with me forever. But I will never leave you.” he said. She could feel the lump in her throat; she now knew she could trust again. She knew YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

now she had someone to rewrite her life with. “I will be with you,” she said, “I will be yours. But not forever.” He smiled and assured that it was alright. He is not “writing a message”. She thinks of him and his thoughts make her cry and smile at the same time. She smiles when she remembers his surprise visits in the mornings to drop her to college. She cries when she remember how he would not answer her calls for hours on end. She smiles when she recalls his confusion whether to go to work or be with her. She cries when she recalls the accident when she felt his life


ebbing out of him. She smiles when she recalls his sleepy voice during their morning calls. She cries when she remembers the first time he fought with her. She smiles when she recalls that no matter how much she yelled at him, the sight of his face would always bring a smile to her lips. But she cries when she recalls that he has been with someone else behind her back. Her thoughts are distracted by the red blinking light. “I am sorry,” it says. Her heart sinks. He types further that he cannot be with her anymore and has found someone else with whom he can be happier. She still hoped it is a prank,

a joke. Just the way her friends assured her. Just a way to teach her a lesson so that she doesn’t ever say, “Leave me alone. I don’t want to be with you.” So that she realises how it will be without him in her life. She sobs, “Please say it’s a lie.” But it isn’t. It’s over. No weekly offs roaming endlessly in the malls doing nothing. No kisses that gave her butterflies in her stomach. No calls in the night that assured her that he would be there in the morning. Now all she had was memories. She looks at her ring finger where his ring was once. Only an untanned reminder now. But even that would fade away. Maybe like these memories. She lies on her bed staring at the message. No amount of pinching herself hand is going to make this a nightmare. But he is gone. She wanted to curse him but could not. How can you curse some one you loved so unconditionally? She wanted to say she hated him. But how could she, when she knew it would be a lie? She wanted to question him, but how can she when she knew he was happier off without her, with someone else? She wanted to hold him back, but how could she, when she had said, “Not forever.”



here is a not-so-old saying, “Scientists look for something that already exists; engineers make those which exits in imaginations.” True to these golden words, let me introduce you to few new engineering subjects. Engineering studies are hardwired to develop something different, new or adventurous. Jonathan Paul, the senior vice president of industrial design at Apple Inc said, “It’s very easy to be different, but very difficult to be better.” Every engineering student has to trudge through some basic subjects in their first year like Basic Computer Engineering, Basic Civil Engineering, etc. Let me introduce to a few subjects, which are not only different but better than those you will find in any book or professor’s notes. It’s called “Love Engineering”.


The fundamental term defines the architecture and basic working process of the subject. A real life incident: four friends had just entered college. On their first day, one of them announced that their teacher had asked for a list of phone numbers and e-mails of all students. The students made up the list and submitted it to that student. But it wasn’t the teacher but those four students who wanted this list so that they could get the contact details of their female classmates! Actually, the Architecture of love includes basic techniques on how to find a lover. For that one searches amongst friends, siblings of friends, social networking sites. Also you train yourself on how to attract and impress a person. You have to put in your best efforts because competition is thick out there.


You have to use your resources like laptops (actually meant for projects), mobiles and anything else possible to “connect”. By default, mobile phones become a controlling tower of your relationship. SMSes, calls and android apps


are used to their maximum to flirt and chat with the partner.

But beware of the hitchhikers who will extract your pocket money because they have already exhausted theirs. And last but not the least:



Software engineers use programming language to write a code script which an operating system can understand easily and perform a task. The youth are experts on operating scripts of ‘Emotional Atyachar’. As research points out “Your Friends Are More Important Than Me” and “Use Of Tears” are the two most powerful and shortest code scripts found frequently used by our youth.


The trickiest of all subjects is Pocket Money Management. When it comes to pocket money management system, our managerial skills take a U-turn and we transfer all our energy in manipulating the key- Dad. The technique is to use “conference”, “new books”, “projects”, “field study” and other technical jargon to ease the pocket. But some parents are smart and you will end up receiving a book instead of money. Note: There is no need to explain why to save pocket money. Everybody is aware about the gift requirements of lovers.

This is THE most important chapter of Love Engineering. And nothing better than an example to teach you the subject. Yesterday I asked my brother to get some information regarding a college in Pune. He told me that it was easy to get the information as his girlfriend studied there. But as far as I remember, his girlfriend lived in the same city as ours. To this he replied, “Sis, this is another one.” In short, they are creating a networking of girlfriends and boyfriends. Their efficient functional network means that one friend can never get to know another system (lover) in another city. These are only 5 topics, but it is not the end of this engineering. There are thousands of minds and thousands of innovations. Ankita Jain is a writer, who finds time every day, no matter what, to puts her thoughts and experiences onto a paper. She paints and clicks in her free time, and she believes multi tasking is a myth, but concentration and desire can lead any one to do anything! YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


Why The New iPad Is Worth The Moolah


Apurva Chaudhary is a self proclaimed techie and a mobile enthusiast since 2004. She’s the editor-in-chief of a technology site and is the Mumbai correspondent for Medianama.

pple has finally announced the next generation iPad while other tablet manufacturers have started taking notes on what to pack in future tablets. Apple has notoriously named it ‘iPad’ with the presumption that the iPad doesn’t need a last name to identify itself. Only they can get away with something like this!

The new iPad packs bigger RAM at 1GB, is 0.03 inches thicker and 0.11 pounds heavier than the iPad 2 but its processor speed clocks at same frequency as the iPad 2 at 1GHz despite Apple’s new processor A5X. But what steals the show is the new iPad’s crisper display. Apple has packed 2048*1536 pixels on the same 9.7inch display screen. The extremely high resolution makes images, videos and even text a delight for your eyes. Apple describes the retina display on the iPad as “pixel density so high your eye is unable to distinguish individual pixels.” Apart from the mind boggling screen, the new iPad also brings support for true 4G or LTE which brings faster speed than what current HSPA+ networks offer. Now that Airtel and Reliance have begun testing their respective 4G networks, it will be interesting to watch how the iPad sells in India. Another improvement comes to the camera. Let me be the first to accept that the camera on the iPad 2 was beyond pathetic. The new iPad brings improvised iSight and has a 5-megapixel camera (iPad 2 had 0.7MP camera) which does not give blurry and pixelated images like the iPad 2 and has the ability to record true HD 1080p videos.

New iPad Vs. Android Tablets YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Since the launch of the original iPad, other manufacturers have been desperately trying to bring a tablet to compete against it. Samsung Tab 10.1 and Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime TF201 have managed to gather a few eyeballs. While Android tablets do pack tons of hardware specs, there is no Android tablet in the Indian market that brings support for LTE/4G yet. One of the reasons why users preferred Apple’s iPad in the past is the overall Apple experience. When Apple releases a new version of iOS, it brings at least previous 2-3 versions of the device and brings them to all the supported devices all at once. Here’s where Android tablets fail, and miserably at that. Both the Android tablets mentioned above; Samsung Tab 10.1 and Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime TF201, run on Android 3.2 Honeycomb while the latest Android version is Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich which Google released way back in October 2011.

Why Apple’s iPad Wins The real reason behind Apple’s success isn’t the specs, as hard as it is to believe. Apart from the overall experience, Apple also has a major advantage- cost of the iPad. While other manufacturers have time and again announced their inability to keep the price in an affordable range, Apple’s connections and huge manufacturing numbers helps them keep the cost low. Apple’s new iPad will be available in India from 27 April. While the 16 GB WiFi only version is priced at Rs 30,500, the 4G+WiFi version is available at 38,900. Customers have options to choose the black and white iPad with 16, 32 or 64 GB of memory, and can choose a model that works only on WiFi or on both WiFi and 4G. The new iPad, however, is not compatible with the 4G LTE network currently available in India and customers will have to use it with the available 3G networks.



Getting personal with Ashwin Sanghi YSM: Your cartoons for Chanakya Chant are a hit on social networking sites. Was this part of your strategy? Ashwin Sanghi: Yes, We wanted to use modern political developments as the backdrop for marketing Chanakya’s Chant. I am happy to say that this strategy worked. In the process, we not only ended up selling many more copies of the novel but also created a humorous online identity for one of the novel’s characters. Both your novels had reality and mythology. What is your take on mixing real incidents and fiction? We are increasingly living in times when we want our fiction to sound like fact and we want facts to read almost like fiction. When we read a thriller, the story elements should sound real and plausible. On the other hand, when we hear the evening news on TV, we are quite happy to hear a sensationalized version of the truth. It happens all the time. Tell us about how your first novel went for print. How did you approach publishing houses? And how did you handle failure? I wrote The Rozabal Line in 2005. I approached well over a hundred agents and publishers during 2006 but was turned down by everyone who bothered to reply. I self-published The Rozabal Line in 2007 and luckily one of the copies reached the CEO of Landmark Bookstores who recommended it to Westland. The Westland edition came out in 2008 and went on to the bestseller lists for the next six months. The rest is history. Failure is only failure if you fall down and don’t 52


get up again. After a career in business, you are a now a famous writer. Are you living your dream? Yes, I am. I started working in my family’s business when I was just 16. By the time that I was 35, I had reached a plateau in my business life. I needed a creative outlet. I had always been a voracious reader thanks to my grandfather who would send me a book each week to read. But never in my wildest dreams had I imagined that I had the makings of a storyteller in me. You were called ‘India’s answer to Dan Brown’, but your novel was not as controversial as his. Was Brown’s novel the germ for your idea? More than the Da Vinci Code, it was Michael Baigent’s Holy Blood Holy Grail and Holger Kersten’s Jesus Lived In India that inspired me. I had visited Srinagar in 2004 and had become obsessed with the idea that the person buried there might be Jesus Christ. I spent the next twelve months reading over 34 books on the topic before I realized that I knew more about the issue than most people and was hence in a terrific position to write a book about it! Tell us about Chanakya’s Chant. Chanakya’s Chant was simply my answer to the question “Was politics always this messy?” It was 2009 and I was searching for the topic for my next book when I saw how much time it took to form a government in New Delhi the after general elections. The thought struck me—isn’t it possible that Lao Tzu’s view that politics is simply war without bloodshed is true. Isn’t it possible that people, places and props change but politics remains the same? Chanakya’s Chant was simply my desire to contrast two time periods and show that not much has changed. What is your opinion about mythology? Do you think it’s acceptable to play around a bit when it comes to books/movies/any kind of art? What is a myth? It’s a lie that is used to convey a truth. Whether Rama and Ravana existed or not is irrelevant. The fact of the matter is that they symbolize good and evil and the defeat of the latter by the former. That is the truth that is being conveyed. Most Indian stories came down to us via storytellers and village bards without a written language… Do you honestly believe that the stories remained identical down the ages? If you’ve played Chinese Whispers, the message that goes YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

in rarely resembles the one that comes out. Mythology is a little like that! Why did you use a pseudonym (Shawn Haigins) for your first novel but not for the second? Was it because of the kinds of topics involved? When I started writing in 2005, I wanted to keep my business identity distinct and separate from my literary identity. I took all the letters in “Ashwin Sanghi” and laid them out on a Scrabble board. I then juggled them around to see which alternative names I could come up with using all the letters. The only one that I could find was “Shawn Haigins” and hence the first self-published edition of The Rozabal Line was published under that pseudonym. In 2008, Westland Books decided to publish The Rozabal Line and felt that it would be impossible to market the book effectively with the pseudonym. Hence Shawn Haigins was dropped and Ashwin Sanghi reintroduced! Thus both my books have always been under my own name rather than my 53

pseudonym. What do you think are the current youth’s tastes in books? What did you learn from their reactions? On an average, a bookstore browser will spend eight seconds looking at the front cover and fifteen seconds scanning the back cover. Most readers do not get past page eighteen in a book they have purchased. Most internet users spend less than fifty-three seconds on an average website. A study by Lloyds TSB insurance showed that the average attention span had fallen to just five minutes, down from twelve minutes ten years ago. All this means that stories have to work very hard to grab the reader and to keep him/her hooked. This is the fundamental change that we authors have to cope with-narrating a story that keeps the reader interested right till the very end. What do you think was the difference in responses to both your books? Why do you think those changes have come about? When I started my search for a publisher in 2006, there were hardly any Indian publishers who were marketing commercial fiction. Most Indian authors were writing literary fiction because that was what they were expected to write. We took ourselves a tad too seriously. If you wanted your daily dose of thrills or chills you needed foreign authors to fill the gap—Sidney Sheldon, Jeffrey Archer, Robert Ludlum, Frederick Forsyth, Irving Wallace and countless others. It was because of this fundamental inability of Indian publishers to successfully market the fiction genre that I found it hard to get published. Today the story is different. The fiction genre fiction gap is getting plugged rapidly and any new story is fair game for the bestseller list.

may include reading, collating, interviewing and traveling. The next two to three months are spent on plotting. Every chapter, every hook, every twist of plot will get mapped on an oversized whiteboard. This becomes my writing roadmap for the next phase, which is the actual writing. Depending on the length, writing could consume six to eight months. This is followed by polishing, editing and pre-production. Usually the total time required from start to finish is around eighteen months. BEST COMPLIMENT / BLURB: ‘I was up till six in the morning reading your novel. Could not go to work because the story took precedence.’ WORST COMPLIMENT / BLURB: ‘It was a great book. I wish you had ended it a little earlier… say around page ten.’ Ouch! FAVOURITE BOOK AND WRITER: All the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren. FAVOURITE GENRE: Obviously, the thriller. HOBBIES: None. Unless drinking whiskey is now considered a hobby. NEXT NOVEL: The topic is a state secret. It will be in the historical genre and covers multiple time periods. It has my usual blend of fact and fiction. I hope to release it by the end of 2012. It should make for an actionpacked thrilling ride when completed.

What do you want to change in the writing profession? If we took ourselves a lot less seriously, wrote when we were inebriated and edited when we were sober, I think we would have much more interesting literature! When you are not writing, what keeps you occupied? To start with: my business life. Whatever time is left, is entirely for my family. I have no interests whatsoever besides business, writing, reading and family. Is there any special routine like travelling etc. that you do before you start writing? I usually spend six months to a year researching. This 54





into the physical image we perceive when we look into the mirror. This outward form of our body then, is a reflection of all that has gone into it, the inward transformation of what has been received by it, the inner image of the data fed into it, is reflected outwardly in the form of the physical structure we identify as ‘the body’. Spotlighting the image within highlights the connection between the outer form of the image of an art work and the inner experience from which it has evolved.

Bharati Kapadia is a visual artist based in Mumbai. She has exhibited widely, her STAGING THE SETS series was shown in 2008 in Mumbai, Vienna and Munich. She was invited by Transcultural Exchange, Boston to participate in their 2002 and 2004 international art initiatives, THE COASTER PROJECT and THE TILE PROJECT, and was awarded the Apex Art residency, New York, in 2001. She has initiated and created art related projects and presented slide lectures at art institutions and museums in India and abroad. Her work is in several collections in India, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, UK and USA. YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


ur own outward form, our body, is also a reflection of an inner image. The food we eat, the kind of thoughts we think, the environment we live in, how we react emotionally to all kinds of situations that we experience, and our heredity; in short the choices that we have and haven’t made in our lives, are some of the key factors which shape our body

The key word here is ‘unfolding’: uncovering the hidden connections which play a crucial role in shaping the outward form of an art work. But, as I see it, the question is really why zero in on uncovering the unobvious, the hidden, behind an image in the context of art? Because, very often, it is just this particular area which stands between the spectator and the art work she is trying to enjoy– enjoy as in ‘savour’, ‘experience’. What the spectator misses is the connection between the art work and herself, her life, which would allow her an entry into the work of art. Again, it is the same area very often, which is the source of bafflement for the creator of the art work, the artist. “Why am I doing the kind of work I do the way I do; what is the impetus which sets a certain direction for my art to evolve the way it does?” these are crucial questions which beg to be addressed. Being able to identify the connections between oneself and one’s art yields strength to the conceptual foundation of one’s art.This clarity lights up the way, opening it up for the artist to tread firmly and sure-footedly in her chosen direction. 55

To give you an example related to my work, I have selected the work titled DEWDROP made with handmade paper and rope. Here, the source of light is from behind the work. When light penetrates the paper body, it illuminates the inner space of the body and reveals to our eyes what is happening within it, much like an x-ray does.The process which went into making this happen was as under: By wetting a sheet of handmade paper, I peeled off layers from its surface to thin certain areas, which made them transparent and allowed light to pass through. Only then, when light passed through certain areas of its body, the paper was able to show its innerscape, which otherwise would have remained invisible to the naked eye. Now, the question facing me was that what was making me want to work this way? Why was I making these works function as X-rays? The answer lay in realizing the connection between my self and my process, which dawned on me gradually as I churned the question in my mind. As I mulled over it, interacted with it in my imagination, I began to become aware of certain connections underlying the process of my work, and my own experience of life, with life I might say.


tions for light to shine through from within, would I be able to see the picture of the self within, the picture which has disappeared from sight under the debris of the layers. Since this body of my work was meant to address the inner, the subtle, the non-visible, emotive states of being, I intuitively connected to my experience of looking at an Xray, and also the stained glass church windows; both reveal the images contained within their bodies only when the source of light passes through their bodies from behind them. This connection led me to the technique of scraping and peeling layers off the paper body to create the right conditions for light to shine through and reveal the image enclosed within the paper body.


When I want to know what is happening inside me, or inside another being, that which is not obvious to the eyes, I have first to peel off the masks. The thick coats or layers accumulated over years of playing hide and hide with oneself have to be scrubbed away, scraped away, to uncover what lies buried underneath. Only if I can create the right condi56




When was the last time you visited an art gallery… that is, if you have ever done so, consciously!

lose ourselves in a tiny self created world, where there are just us and the work before us.

If you have been a student of fine arts, design, fashion or an allied field you might have made that obligatory visit ages ago. But how often do you take time off from your professional commitments to visit an art gallery or attend a performing arts event?

A piece of art rids us of our emotional baggage, our weariness from life’s journeys and allows us to tear ourselves away from the predictability of everyday life. We feel emotionally distanced, spiritually charged and physically rejuvenated. When we gaze at a wondrous painting or listen to a beautiful composition or lose ourselves in the rhythm of a dazzling dance, we feel truly lost yet fully aware.

But the good news is that it is not always necessary to visit an art gallery or a museum to appreciate art. Art is all around us; it is up to each of us to identify and draw pleasure from it. Life today has become fast-paced and mechanical; deadlines and targets mock us from every corner. Professional rivalry, office politics and personal frustrations leave you drained in spirit. This is when art come into play offering that welcome reprieve from the humdrum.

Most of us enjoy art. Some of us try to produce or collect art. We admire those who create art. But, what is art and why do we need to be associated with and appreciate art? YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Art gives us a glimpse into a fascinating realm full of new ideas, concepts, ideologies and endless possibilities. Art is how and where one perceives it and draws enjoyment from, such as cartoons in tabloids that offer a political comment… it is art and it makes you laugh. Every human being interprets art in his/her own way, adding his own unique flavour to his interpretation; be it in the majesty of architecture, in finely carved furniture, or in the skills of the potter, the humble flower weaver, basket maker or the cobbler. While enjoying a work of art, we tend to

But unfortunately, we city-dwellers are so miserably tangled in our day-to-day affairs that we fail to see or appreciate art that is all around us, unless… I made my fist acquaintance with a gargoyle, outside VT (oops! Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus) while stuck in a massive traffic jam in a smelly yellow-black cab, with a slightly enlightened and artistically inclined friend. I looked across the road over a sea of immobile automobiles. “Is it a bird? Is it an animal? No, it’s a gargoyle!” said my friend and went on to describe this mythical creature and its contribution to society, (that of channeling surplus water into a designated place). I ‘Googled’ the word ‘gargoyle’ and found more images of this mythical creature with a bit of information attached to it. Now I am a willing gargoylehunter across the city and I know exactly the kind of building which will house one. Oh, those bulbous eyes and that insane grin fascinate me endlessly, I don’t know why! Perhaps you should check one out 57


Flora Fountain, Mumbai

Then there was another sojourn with the above mentioned enlightened and artistically inclined friend and one more traffic jam in middle of Colaba (in Mumbai) that introduced me to stainedglass windows. It took some focus and very quick peering into the bungalows and 2-storey structures that dotted Colaba and are fast disappearing. Now I have a few favourite ones left in various parts of the city, such as the ones at Mumbai University, and if I need a bigger fix I head to one of the old churches, especially Afghan Church, which never disappoints. Mumbai used to be a city of statues; as a child, the Kala Ghoda fascinated me most. There are some impressive statues of Shivaji Maharaj dotted all over the city. Outside the BMC headquarters, Pherozeshah Mehta’s flowing robes, cast in bronze look like they are fluttering with the winds of change. Look out also for the Father of the Nation in various parts of the city. And then there’s Flora Fountain, that oasis of serenity in the middle of chaos. Try spending a few tranquil minutes to go around it, you will not regret it! Then there’s the pearl merchant’s palace at Pedder Road, now the Villa Theresa School, with its unique architecture combining a mandir, a mosque and a church.

nearby and the potters’ colony will introduce you to the magic of the potters’ wheel.

As you go northwards, the wood carvers at Mahim and Bandra are creating the most fascinating pieces. Go towards Kumbharwada

We admire art in its many forms, some in the realm of skills or design, yet we may never know why. And often the works of


acclaimed artists fail to excite us, but simplicity does. Art is often found outside the portals of art galleries; seek out your individual preference, appreciate it in your own special way, for art will never let you down or fail to rejuvenate you! YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


While only known to outsiders as the home of the industrial center Mumbai, Maharashtra has a lot more to offer to adventure enthusiasts. Forts, forests, wildlife and caves, host-actorbrand ambassador Milind Gunaji takes you on a whirlwind tour of wild Maharashtra.


AHARASHTRA has more than 350 forts and almost all of them have a direct association with the legendary Shivaji Maharaj. Each fort is as beautiful and mesmerizing as the other, so I wouldn’t be exaggerating when I say that each fort is a tourist and has its own importance. But if I were to suggest one place or my favorite among them, Harishchandragad

Photography by Mangesh Halbe YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


is undoubtedly the one. This majestic hill fort is situated on the border of Ahemadnagar, Pune and Thane. Malshej Ghat, a wellknown weekend hangout zone after Lonavla, Khandala, Amboli and Matheran is easily accessible from Harishchandragad. The mountain peaks of Taramati Shikhar and Rohidas Shikhar is well known to adventurers. The huge caves enclosed in Taramati Shikhar are often used as shelter by trekkers. A 2000 year old Harishchandreshwar temple built in Hemadpanthi, also located in Taramati, is renowned for its charming architecture. Konkan Kada is another highlight of the place. Konkan Kada derives its name from the Konkan coast which falls to the west of Maharashtra. The concave shaped Konkan Kada is also said to be the most beautiful cliff because of its unique shape and beauty. The zigzag valley of the Konkan

Kada, measures 4000 ft at its crest and 1500ft at its trough. The vast difference in the air pressure makes it difficult for a person to stand on its edge. Legend has it that a man by the name of Arvind Barve was so mesmerized by the beauty of the place, that he jumped from the kada as no other place would be as beautiful for him. His name is carved on a Sangamravri stone on that spot in his memory. Mornings on the hills are some of the most tranquil experiences that can ever happen to one. Cradled by clouds, the sun rises magnificently from the east and you can see countless shadows of yourself. In the rainy season, you can even see rainbows sprout out of the clouds surrounding you! Very few people are lucky enough to have witnessed such wonder.You can catch some of those photos in my book ‘Mystical Magical Maharashtra’, or better, go there and experience it yourself.

Tips for youngsters - Start with the basic treks. I suggest treks in Khandala and Rajmachi which is good for beginners. - Wear hunter (trekking) shoes to protect from snake bites, thorns, etc. - Always carry a torch, knife, potable water, food (instant noodles, glucose biscuits) basic first aid kid and any necessary medicines.

Reference books for interested adventurers: - Harish Kapadia’s Trek The Sahyadri - Milind Gunaji’s Chanderi Bhatkanti

Photography by Mangesh Halbe




Photography by Mangesh Halbe

As the brand ambassador for forest and wildlife of Maharashtra I try my best to improve them by encouraging tourists to visit forests, as the forts are generally surrounded by forests. Besides forts, Maharashtra also has many caves that are worth exploring. With 70-80 caves, we have quite a large number of caves compared to the rest of India. Nane Ghat, Ajanta, Ellora, Kondhane, Thanale, Khadsambale and Panhalekaje are just some of the famous caves, which have a great history behind them. Maharashtra also has a few sea forts Sindhudurg, Devgad, Janjira, Vijaydurg, Kulaba, KhanderiUnderi (some of them are not open to the public as they are under the armed forces). Because of Maharashtra’s proximity to YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

the sea and the Sahyadri range, hill stations and ocean tourism are abundant. Tarkarli, near Sindhudurga (Konkan), is known for ocean tourism. Moving on to wildlife, there are many beautiful sanctuaries in the state. Nagzira, Navegaon, Ballarshah, Bench are few of the sanctuaries situated in Chandbhandara district. Melghat tigers can be found in the Kolkaz forest near Chikhaldara hill station. The Fansad forest, located near the Jaljeera mountains, is a sight for sore eyes. The view from the forest has the mountain on one side and the sea on the other. Chandoli forest, which is located nearby, is home to many leopards and Melghat tigers. We had gone to the Kulaba fort for the shooting of my show

‘Bhatkanti’. The fort is situated in the sea at a distance of 1–2 km from the Alibag shores.You can walk to the fort only during low tide. Knowing this condition, we went inside exactly during the low tide and we had just two hours to wrap up the entire shoot as it would be high tide by then. We were just wrapping up the shoot when a villager came running to us and asked us to leave immediately as it would be high tide in no time. By the time we left the fort, it was high tide already and the sea water was touching my knees but we decided to move ahead anyway. But after a few steps, the water was up to my chest. Now at 6’2”, I am pretty tall but the water was up to other crew members’ heads. 61

We had no option but to walk fast and survive. The fun was that though I was the tallest among all, I was the only one who couldn’t swim! And when I realized the sea bed and my feet were not in contact, it was difficult to walk ahead. Suddenly we all heard banging and shouting behind us. The family who stayed on the fort and were calling us back. Fortunately when we turned and we found some surface that led us back to the fort. Members of our crew had their feet, bleeding and aching because of the uneven surface. Thanks to the kindness of the family that lived in the fort, we got medicines and they also fed us some nice home-cooked food. They later informed us that it we were wise in turning back as the sea bed went very deep right there! Listening to this we got to know that we fought death for few minutes.

Photography by Mangesh Halbe




The Great Ladakhi Escape

ABOUT THE WRITER Raoul Lobo works in Marketing by day, does Stand up Comedy by night and travels whenever he gets leave.

and frost bite at the same time. But don’t worry, in any case I’ll be coming with you.” Tsering, my rafting guide’s words resonated through my head as I felt the cold water of the Zanskar river sting my skin again. It was July, summer in Ladakh. I shuddered to think what the winters would be like. As we floated on this river the colour of steel surrounded on either side by massive Martian red mountains, it occurred to me that if we drowned no one would even hear us scream, let alone rescue us. Tsering laughed at my clattering teeth and broke my train of thought. And then I remembered this is exactly why I came to Ladakh and laughed back at him.

Pangong Tso (Tso is the Ladakhi word for lake)

Great people, scenic beauty, hearty food and you know its Ladakh. Says Raoul Lobo...


e looked at me coolly, threw his hands in the air and said,“This is Ladakh, you can’t predict the weather. If you are in the sun and your feet are in the shade you can get sunstroke


An entire year I saved, scrimped and planned to get to Ladakh. To experience its land and people before it turned into the next Simla. Right at the start I saw Ladakh was different. Even getting there through the Leh-Manali Highway was an adventure sport. The trip took 2 days with a night stay at Keylong. As we passed through harsh beauty of rock and ice, the trip took on a surreal feel as


we went almost a whole day without seeing any other life form. Tiny settlements of nomadic dwellers were like oases of human interaction. Every time our bus passed them, entire families cheered and mothers carried their bundled red cheeked children to wave at us like we were long lost relatives. The local language is Ladakhi, but the people also speak Hindi and some English, although there is one Ladakhi word you must know- ‘Joule!’ The ubiquitous word serves as a greeting as well as goodbye, fits right in to almost every social situation and is an excellent conversation starter. Another great way of meeting interesting people in Leh is to check the notice boards of various cafes where tourists are free to write of their travel plans and invite fellow travelers to join in and split the costs for a trek to Tsomoriri or the Nubra Valley. Leh is a tiny town, where you are likely to meet everyone you know twice on your morning walk. The town is full

Leh Palace of guest houses, hotels, eateries, tour organizers, shops for artifacts, book stores, a Buddhist Vihar and the Jama Masjid which serves as something of a center point. Leh Palace overlooks the entire town as if the 17th century structure itself now serves as Leh’s ruler and guardian. In Leh, the food available includes continental, Indian, Kashmiri, Chinese as well as Tibetan specialties like

Bactrian Camel at Hundar sand dunes



momos and piping hot Thukpa, which really hits the spot in the cold weather. But for strictly authentic Ladakhi fare, our driver Mohammed volunteered to get his wife to make us Chicken Skyu, a thick gravy dish with vegetables and flour to be eaten with traditional unleavened Ladakhi bread. Like most local food Skyu is on the mild side. The local liquor ‘Chhaang’ is definitely worth trying out. Made of fermented rice; its taste is similar to toddy. Gur gur chai, another specialty, is basically strong green tea made with butter and salt, and is often served to visitors at monasteries and helps with altitude sickness. The monasteries are all beautiful, if a little similar, after seeing the first few. My favourites are Spituk, Thiksey, Dikshit and Phyang monasteries. The monks are the happiest looking people on earth and open to tourist’s questions. You can

106 feet tall Buddha Statue at Dikshit monastery



also meditate in the prayer hall or admire the beautiful thangkas depicting various deities. We were lucky enough to even attend the Phyang festival. Entire families came to enjoy the fair. Various stalls were set up and the monks put up a traditional music and dance performance to depict the victory of a saint over demons and the forces of evil. Ladakhi grandmothers whispered the morals of the stories to their grandchildren, who were more in interested in buying sweets from the food stalls. After our third day in Leh we decided it was time for an overnight trip to Khardung La and Hundar. Khardung La, with an elevation of 17,582 feet, is one of the highest motorable passes in the world.The pass is maintained by the Border Roads Organisation, famous for their curious road safety signs like ‘Feel the curves: Do not test them’, ‘Darling I like you: but not so fast’ and my personal favourite, ‘Don’t Gossip Let Him Drive’. The pass is strategically important to India as it used to carry supplies to the Siachen Glacier and has a sizeable presence of Indian soldiers.

interest; I guess it would be how we felt if someone asked us to stop so they could stare at a cow on the street. Marmots, chubby golden rodents, kept popping up from the ground and happily accepted a biscuit we gave them. Mohammed asked us if we didn’t have animals in Mumbai rather alarmed at even suggesting the possibility. I replied that we did, but none like these. The sand dunes at Hundar complete what must be the most varied topography in the world. In this bizarre cold desert you can ride a two humped Bactrian camel and roll in the sand to your heart’s content. As our trip concluded, we prepared to go back from Leh to Srinagar and then to Jammu Tavi to catch our train back to Mumbai. I came to Ladakh to go beyond the tourist maps and get a taste of its authentic culture but looking back, I barely scratched the surface of what this mystical land has to offer. I’ll always remember its sights of unearthly almost alien beauty, but what will stay with me the most is the people I met, their love of their land and their smiling faces.

On our way to Hundar we notice a herd of yak roaming freely near a stream and I ask Mohammed to stop the car to get a closer look. He seemed puzzled in our sudden




Quenchers For The Summers Blue On The Ride Ingredients:

60 ml of Blue Curacao 120 ml of Orange juice 120 ml of Pineapple juice 120 ml of Sweet n’ Sour mix (equal quantities of lime juice, sugar and water) Method: Put all the liquids together with ice and shake well. Glass: Serve in a martini glass.



Mangoberry Ingredients:

250 ml of Mango juice 1 scoop of vanilla ice-cream Ice cubes Strawberry mix (fresh strawberry and sugar blended together) Fresh mint leaves Method: Blend mango juice, icecream, ice-cubes and mint leaves. Layer strawberry mix with the blended mixture on top. Glass: Serve in a pilsner glass. 68


Hawaiian Chocolate Ingredients:

Pinacolada mix (330 ml of pineapple juice and milk,1 tin of coconut cream) 60 ml malibu Chocolate syrup Kit-kat Method: Blend pinacolada mix and malibu together. Make a chocolate syrup swirl in the glass. Pour the mix in. Garnish with kit-kat.



Black Devil Ingredients:

60 ml of Blue Curacao 90 ml of Orange juice 1 oz of Coke Method: Take a glass. First pour the blue curacao, then layer it with oranje juice. Top it up with the final coke layer. Glass: Serve in a martini glass.






outh in today’s modern era are inactive for 75% of their waking hours and they only spend about 16% of their day on vigorous activity. Most of them replace outdoor activities with computer games and television programs. Obesity now affects sixty percent of the adult population. Youngsters who are overweight have a greater risk of becoming overweight adults and face the possibility of stroke, cancer, high blood pressure, and heart disease in their future. Hence exercise keeps one fit, healthy, happy, and sane. There are endless benefits to working out besides a good body. Physical appearance isn’t everything and it shouldn’t be the main reason for hitting the gym/pavement.

But it is not the dream of abs of steel that draws the crowd in a gymnasium. The huge growth in the popularity of health clubs and gym membership is actually driven by hunt for a healthy environment and for friendship and social interaction. Gyms provide a structured environment for workouts. It keeps one motivated; by watching others doing exercise and getting benefited one inspires to join them. Sense of community - sometimes working out can be a lonely task, especially if one is just getting into the habit. Some work well in a group, and the gym gives them a sense of community while they’re working out. Working out at the gym reminds one that they are not alone in the quest for a stronger and healthier body. Doing exercise in supervision of trained instructor boosts confidence and prevents accidents or muscle injuries. The instructor guides one about use and benefits of machines help to do specific exercises in appropriate manner to get the maximum out put. Using a variety of equipment’s keeps one motivated and helps one exercise in different styles. Most of the gymnasiums have nutritionists attached who guide the clients to adapt to healthy eating choices for a healthier and fitter body.

These are some favourite reasons to hit the gym: • Helps induce better sleep • Improves self confidence • Relieves stress • Improves your cardio vascular, muscular endurance • Helps prevent heart diseases, Type II diabetes, hypertension etc. • Exercising is an excellent release mechanism. What’s more, it doesn’t come with a guilt package like other addictions such as smoking or drinking.’ • Regular exercise helps in building robust muscles, improving body postures, stabilizing your body joints, and lowering chronic pain • The most popular advantage of working out is that it will make you look and feel younger and help one achieve a better body composition YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Paying the fees and binding will probably make one committed to attend the gym regularly. While the benefits of working out and staying fit have been well-documented, some claim they go to the gym first for recreation and then for other obvious reasons like staying fit. Gym can provide a platform to meet like-minded people and make new friends It is important to remember that we have a wonderful opportunity to influence the youth of tomorrow. By making healthy choices, they can avoid many of the health and thus increase the chances of having bright and healthy futures. And a Gymnasium definitely helps fix it in any number of ways



Future Stars Of Indian Sports

“Sports do not build character; they reveal it”.

- John Wooden

Sports: for some its entertainment, for some it’s an art, for some its physical activity, and for some it’s just ‘sport’. No matter what you think of it, sports are different from other entertainment activities and art forms. Some sports need natural talent, some need rigorous practice, and some physical fitness. It’s here that you learn to rise after every fall, where you keep on moving even with the taste of mud and blood in your mouth. YSM focuses on the future sports stars of our country.

P. V. Sindhu This 16 year old badminton player, groomed by Gopichand Badminton Academy, is touted to be the next Saina Nehwal in Indian badminton. Her parents are former volleyball players so its no surprise that she her natural athletic talents are in her genes. She shone her talent at a very young age and started winning gold medals from her under-10 days. She is a winner in the under-13, under-16 and under-19 categories and was also the youngest member of the Uber Cup. Sindhu has also performed well in the Junior World Badminton Championships and at the Iran Fajr International tournament. She is supported by Olympic gold quest an initiative by Indian sporting legends Geet Sethi and Prakash Padukone.



Jeje Lalpekhlua This 21 year old young football player is expected to fill the gap left in Indian football by the legend Baichung Bhutia. He has a record of living up to the team’s expectations: he has already scored 8 important goals in 16 senior appearances for the country. In his early days, he has lead the under-19 team, and also has won matches with India under-23 team. Being a Pune FC player, Jeje’s I-League kicked off during his one year loan stint with newcomers Indian Arrows, where he scored 13 times in 15 appearances. He is back in this season as one of the regular starter of Pune FC team. After bagging two SAFF gold medals with the Indian team, we won’t be surprised if he fills in for the torch bearer of Indian football, Baichung Bhutia. Player to look out for: Lalrindika Ralte of Churchill brothers.

Yuki Bhambri Nineteen year old Yuki Bhambri is a shining light in the future of Indian tennis. In 2009, he went on to blaze his way to victory at the junior Australian Open, and thus became the first Indian singles winner at the junior Australian Open. After his success abroad, he has started to concentrate on his pro career. Even though his form graph is inconsistent since last year, he is very young and has a lot of time to mature into one of the next biggest stars of Indian tennis.

Parimarjan Negi This chess prodigy is the youngest Indian Grand master and was the second youngest GM in the world at the age of 13. With one national championship and some international tournaments already in his kitty, he is currently with an FIDE ELO rating of 2641, as of January 2012. This puts him in the 5th position among the top 20 junior players of the world. YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012



Soccer – Goals Within BY C. PRASANNA VENKATESH


he game of football has an illustrious history. It has seen everything: skills, passion, goals, courage and more in the field, even to violence, peace, togetherness and development off the field.

But the season of 2010 to 2011 is a season that sets the transition of the game to a more competitive future. There were a lot of headlines this year: Goal Line Technology, Developing the quality of refereeing, racism incidents in Russia and England, war of words between Pele and Maradona, and above all, the inflated transfer prices and influx of money in many clubs, Roberto di Matteo for making Chelsea change from high profile strugglers to favorites for reaching the cup and the Champions league finals. When you look into the top 3 leagues this season, there are important lessons to be learnt:

MONEY VS LEGACY Money has bought Manchester City a set of highly talented and expensive players. On paper, these stars can score in any team, on any ground in the world. But they ended up getting eliminated in the first round of the Champions League, losing the semifinal to Liverpool and the quarter finals to Portugal team sporting FC. They now trail their local rivals United by 3 points with three games remaining to go. Manchester United, too, followed this trait. They were shockingly booted out by FC Basel and SL Benfica in the group stages of the UEFA Champions League.They lost the plot to Athletic Bilbao in the Europa League but lead second place to City in the race for the Premier League title. Both teams have their reasons for their dismal performances. Where City has missed its main players due to suspension and indiscipline, United has missed its Captain Vidic and Midfield Enforcer Fletcher due to injuries, along with many of its team players taking turns in the medical room. On one hand City lost due to its lack of experience and squad fragility, and on the other, United survived because of its experience, strong squad replacements, that man Rooney and Carrick’s consistency. Winning the Premier league will cover up the failures of both teams. In the end, it


boils down to an essence of Ferguson’s arrogance that has made them survive; be it persisting with Scholes and not buying Sneijder or under using Berbatov.

AGGRESSION VS TIKA TAKA In the Spanish League, it is business as usual. While Barcelona chases Real Madrid for the title, Madrid’s 2-1 victory in the Calasiao has made it a favourite for the La Liga title. Here, it’s more of a clash of minds between Mourinho and Guardiola, and the unexpected failure of their star players to perform at crucial times. Barca was caught napping on the grounds that didn’t support their high pressing passes and also their lack of finishing against good defending teams that played against them. Madrid, with a clear League record, lost the plot when Ramos and Ronaldo performed below expectations in the Champions League semi-final first leg versus Bayern. But undoubtedly, these are the strongest teams in the Champions League and are also the favorites.

HISTORY VS YOUTH Borussia Dortmund has been crowned champion for the second consecutive year in Bundesliga. After beating Madrid in the first leg of the Champions League, Bayern has the record for the highest goals scored in the League. Even with Ribery and Gomez in hot form, they couldn’t beat Dortmund in the League thanks to the exuberance of the Dortmund squad, tactics and management by their young coach Jürgen Klopp. Dortmund is served well by all its 11 players on the field: from goal keeper Roman Weidenfeller to forward Robert Lewandowski, Midfield young hero Shinji Kagawa, to Enforcer Sven Bender and Defenders Mats Hummels and Subotic. But on the European scene it’s the experience of Bayern that has got them a foot into the finals of the Champions League final while Dortmund lost their way in the first round. The point is that the game has become very fast. Technology has redefined the preparations and training get Paul Scholes, Drogba, Del Piero, Lampard, Raul and Brad Friedel have proved that class and skill is permanent in the game. No matter Rues, Neymer, Hazard and Ganso can develop into big stars, Messi and Ronaldo can become immortal giYOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

ants, UEFA’s fair play rule can stop clubs with money having an advantage, but the game develops more when it spreads into the grassroots, groomed by sensible coaches who ensure that talent is nurtured purely on the basis of their game. Still there is a problem of illegal scouting and inflated transfer prizes, but it’s a part and parcel of the system. As I write, I will be seeing the second leg of the Champions League. But I didn’t write too much about lessons we have to take from the Spanish and Portugal Teams’ performances in UEFA Europa League, and didn’t even mention our own YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

NFL’s standings or our Bengal Derby, or the announcement of the so called Indian Premier League Football. But I sign off with the belief that the game will take long strides in the coming years, and we at YSM will focus on the performance of any league based on the performance than its glamour. P. S.: For those asking about India’s low position in football, the AIFF, the people of India, and corporations in the country, have an equal role in taking the game forward. Because we still have to spend time nurturing the skills of our budding players.




He’s one of the first set of youngsters who broke open through the first two editions of IPL, and he has matched that expectations with loads of runs in Domestic Circuit. And after showing consistency in the ODI set up, he has moved into the Test squad. Meet Cricketer Rohit Sharma. Will he be in the “Fab four” of the Indian cricket team?


YSM: “Rohit Sharma oozes batting talent: malleable wrists, knack to find the gaps, and the extra half a second when he plays his shots” is the first line of your profile. How do you feel when you read this? Rohit Sarma: High praise! It’s great to see people having such high expectations of me but that just means I have that much of high standards to achieve. Living up to this means never having the option to be complacent. YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

You are counted as the young blood in the Indian cricket team. Does that put pressure on you? Our seniors are legendary. Those are some big shoes to fill! The competition among the youngsters is fierce; you know that if you let yourself go even a little there’s someone out there just waiting to take your place... Having said this I don’t want to put pressure on myself because there’s pressure already when you wear the Indian jersey. So I want to enjoy my game, the atmosphere and the feeling of representing my country. Are you happy with your performance at the times when you got your opportunities? As a player you never mean to squander opportunities. Every time I’ve got an opportunity, I’ve tried to give more than 100%. The outcome is important, but in the end, it’s the effort you put in that’s more important. I don’t believe in looking back with regret; I believe in moving forward and that’s just what I’m doing. I’m working hard on my game and my fitness, which will help me become a successful cricketer. Cricket and Bollywood are known to be India’s love. How do you manage with the glitz, glamour and stardom that have come along? It’s all part-and-parcel but you can’t let it get to you. My main focus is my game; the rest is secondary. Cricket is what gave me this status so I make sure I don’t forget that. Do you still manage to hang out with your friends often? Yes, I do! As you know, the cricket calendar is pretty packed but when I do get time at home, I spend some of it with my friends. It’s important to remember where you come YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

from, so I haven’t lost touch with the people I grew up with, the people that matter. Do you have any superstitions before going out on the field? Yes, I do, but I’m too superstitious to say it! Who is first person you call when you get out for a duck? My family or my best friend. The IPL is turning out to be an important tournament for all players. Do you have any lessons from the IPL? Every form of cricket I play is important to me. IPL is a great platform for players to make a mark, it gives great exposure and great opportunities to interact and play with and against international cricketers. I took my first hat-trick during the IPL. That was at a time when people were questioning my capacity as a bowler. I have learnt how to be a game finisher which is so critical today. If you had to make a team with just 4 Indian players, whom would you choose? Sachin (Tendulkar), Yuvraj (Singh), Zak (Zaheer Khan) and PK (Praveen Kumar). Do you have any close friends in the Indian cricket team? We spend so much time touring that we’re all like family now. But if I had to name a few I guess Yuvi, Pk, Nehra, Virat, Zak are all close friends.

Tell us about your mentors and coach? Dinesh Lad is my coach and he was the one who brought me up as a cricketer. I was a bowler when I started off and he was the one who saw my talent in batting and asked me to concentrate as hard as I could on my batting along with bowling. On a good day, you can score against any attack; it’s just a matter of consistency. We saw it in the entire Windies series. How was the feedback for you? It was overwhelming. It was my first Man Of The Series and I worked very very hard for it. It was nice to have my hard work recognised and I plan to keep going that way. Best Innings.

Gujarat in Ranji Trophy: This was

probably my most special innings to date. The feeling was indescribable.

First ODI Century in Zimbabwe:

It was surreal. I waited a long time for it.

Man of the Series Award in recent West Indies tour: I worked very

very hard for that so it was extra special. It was my first man of the series award. I worked on my fitness, my game and the mental aspect of my game and it paid off.

50 of 40 balls in World 20-20 v/s South Africa: It was a great feeling!

If you get one day off from practice and everything cricket, what do you generally do? Spend time with my family, my friends. Stay in and play video games, watch movies. Regular boy stuff. 77





e’re used to seeing poetry in different forms; from the cheesy ‘Roses are red, violets are blue...’ to the erudite ‘I wandered lonely as a cloud...’ poetry is a part of our life, whether we like it or not.

Rhyme=Poetry? There was once a time when we all loved poems, or at least the poorer cousins of poems. We sat on our little desks in school and repeated after the teacher mind numbing lines like “Ring a ring of roses”. Like a herd of buffaloes blindly following the human who held the stick. It was very simple: you hold hands, walk in 78

a circle singing it and sit happily once it’s done. Sadly, things got progressively worse as we grew up. You had to learn the names of the poets, recite them to your teachers and earn marks.

What An Onomatopoeia! Have you EVER said that while reading a poem? We have been taught to analyze poems, to dig out the metaphors, to question the rhetorics, to strangle out the alliterations, until it looks like a well dissected corpse. The moment you have to analyse what kind of a line was used in a poem, it’s like taking the most adorable baby penguin from its mother and telling her that her baby is as pretty as Pranabda’s budget. Do you really care which letter is repeated how many times? Will you refuse to read a poem if its just 17.5 stanzas? Is abab a better rhyme scheme that xkcd? Surely Keats didn’t bother about personifications and hyperboles when he wrote,“The poetry of earth is never dead…”

Blank Verse Imagine you’ve spent hours grooming yourself elaborately for one of the most exclusive parties in town. And then the host tells you, “Well, you can come in a butt naked too.” Blank verse makes rhyming poetry look something like that. But its very beauty is that breaks it doesn’t allow a rhyme scheme to bind your words.

Emily Dickinson’s wayward rhyme in “Because I could not stop for death…” doesn’t exclude her from the club.

Haiku To You Too Seventeen syllables to contain your thoughts. Nothing less, nothing more. 5-7-5 is the best. So Soseki and co may have written gems like, “Over the wintry forest | winds howl in rage | with no leaves to blow.” with just one wave of the quill, but its still sounds like an exclusive club you’re meant to just stare at. While the short format of haiku is very appealing, its constraints are too much for me to bear.

Limericks The outcast of the family of poetry, the funniest and the most non-sense ones. Though they are easy to read, once you try writing one of them, you realize that it is not as easy as it looks. Remember “There once was a young lady from Niger…”? Poetry will save your sorry backside when you forget your girlfriend’s birthday. It will resonate in your soul when it talks about the dead warrior they brought back home. It will make you smile when it talks of death like an old friend. Forget what your school taught you, poetry is food for your soul, not a mathematical formula to be analysed.

So if W. H. Davies could make you clap with joy with the simplicity and ease (of remembering) his “Here’s an example from a butterfly”, YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012


Filmmaking As Career R. Sritharan is the Principal of the MGR Government Film & TV Institute in Chennai. He graduated from the Institute of Film Technology (Chennai) and has worked with Doordarshan, Tamil films and in the creative teams of many corporate films, documentaries and educational films. The first institution to conduct a course called License in Cinematography and Sound Engineering was the Central Polytechnic (Madras) and awarded Diploma certificates to successful candidates after 3 years of the course. Later, when the Polytechnic Institution was shifted to the present campus, located at Taramani (Chennai), a special institution to impart training in the field of Motion Picture Technology, named Institute of Film Technology was established. It was inaugurated by the late Honorable Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri in 1964.


n the land of epics, the multitude of generations who grew up listening to stories of heroes like Rama, Arjuna, Bheema and their antagonists Ravana and Duryodhana were fascinated by their heroism and their fight against evil.These stories were passed on to them by their parents, grandparents or by stage plays and discourses in temples.

The quest to learn filmmaking was quenched by establishing one more institution called the ‘Film and Television Institute of India at Pune, Maharashtra, where the famous Prabhat Studio stood, set up by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting in 1960, it went on to produce films in many Indian languages.

After the invention of motion pictures, these stories were made into feature films and exhibited to audiences in theatres. Later, people had the pleasure of viewing these feature films in their own living rooms along with their kith and kin on television.

These two institutions imparted training in the field of Motion Picture Technology and produced many technicians who later served the motion picture industry in India and abroad.

When motion pictures were shown during the British rule in India, some of the Indians, who were fascinated by this technology, went a step ahead to learn the technology and even sold their ancestral property to procure motion picture equipment, produced and exhibited their films to public on their own. Based on the enthusiasm shown by the public, who were attracted towards this technology, the government at that time decided to establish technical studies in this field by starting courses in the erstwhile Polytechnic Institution at Madras (now known as Chennai) in 1945. YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

These were the only institutions to train students who were interested in learning the nuances of filmmaking till the ‘90s. Later, one more institution, named after the great filmmaker Satyajit Ray was established in Kolkata, West Bengal. These three institutions trained students and produced technicians to serve the film industry. These institutions have the proper infrastructure to train the students in the fields of cinematography, sound recording, sound engineering, direction, screenplay writing and film editing. Among the three institutions mentioned above, only the Chennai Institute offers a course in film processing. All the



three government run film institutions have professional motion picture and video equipments, sound stages, lighting equipments, recording theatres, film processing laboratories and television studios. During the course of their study the students are given various film and video projects, where they work along with their unit members in a coordinated way to learn the nuances of filmmaking. Periodically they have interactions with working professionals from the film and television industry through workshops and internship programs. Since the last two decades some private film schools have opened up in Mumbai, New Delhi, Chennai, Bengalaru and Kolkata which offer courses in film and television production. For the past twenty years, with the introduction of digital technology both in film and television industry, the need to update training infrastructure in the related field resulted in the establishment of courses in mass media, visual communication and electronic media at various institutions all over India. Aspiring students have a wide choice of courses at various levels to train in a particular field.

infrastructure, practical training and fee structure. Candidates should also verify boarding facilities available at the institutions and their collaboration with the respective media industry for job placements. Special effects, animation and 3D creation is the current craze in the field of content creation for films, television, games and the internet. Various institutions all over India in major cities offer to train students in these fields but very few have the infrastructure to do so. Aspiring students may start to learn this technology either after completing their Higher Secondary Education or Under Graduation. The Film and Television Institute of India (Pune) and Satyajit Ray Film and Television Institute (Kolkata) offers direction and screenplay writing (after under graduation), cinematography, sound recording & sound engineering, film processing and film editing. FTII (Pune), MGR Government Film and Television Institute (formerly known as Film and Television Institute of Tamil Nadu) and some private institutions in New Delhi and Mumbai offer similar courses or short term ones.

It is up to the candidates to choose their field of interest and the institution by judging their curriculum,




The Awakening Shiuli Dutta chose to write about revolutions since she feels that they are the precursor to something bigger and better. More and more people are waking up to protest about the political & economic injustice the world-over and it’s important to acknowledge the role SHIULI DUTTA of the youth in this too.


n the year 2000, the world seemed to have finally woken up from its deep slumber of injustice. Where everybody once bowed to the government and seemed to have learned to live with corruption, and even stimulate it, suddenly there was an uproar that seeped its way across borders. In India, it started with Irom Sharmila Chanu, a civil rights activist and poet from the Indian state of Manipur. She is also known as the ‘Iron Lady of Manipur’. One can easily conclude her to be one of the most courageous women India has been witness to in recent times. Since 2 November 2000, she has been fasting to demand that the Indian government repeals the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), which she blames for the violence in Manipur and other parts of northeast India. Ten civilians were allegedly killed by the Assam Rifles (one of the Indian Paramilitary Forces) on 2 November 2000 while waiting at a bus stop. Since 2000, that’s almost 12 years now, she has been in and out of jail as her way of fasting was seen as a suicide attempt which in India is unlawful. Though her method of having her demands heard can be considered as unconstitutional, the Indian government hasn’t taken any concrete steps for resolving this issue. Who can forget the Egyptian revolution of 2011, or perhaps the uproar and varied reactions that followed Muammar Gaddafi’s capture and assasination NLA fighters & then the uprisYOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

ing of Syria which started on 26 January 2011. This was closely followed by the Occupy Wall Street Movement in New York which has now spread like wildfire in many parts of the world. All of these protests or revolutions, as one would call them, happened or are happening because of social and economic inequality, high unemployment rate, greed, corruption, lack of political reforms and denial of civil rights. Closer home, one man forced the government to sit up and realize the infestation of corruption and how the aam janta is being forced to bear the brunt of it. Anna Hazare’s demand of bringing in a strong Lokpal Bill was encouraged by a majority of people from various socio-economic backgrounds. The youth bunked colleges to join his peaceful marches. A select majority of people even fasted with Anna to show their anger against the government. One may argue that fasting to have demands heard is equivalent to holding the government at ransom but the common man has only one question to this situation. “Is there any other way?’ The agitation of the masses participating in this protest was met by a ruffled government. Talks regarding the Lokpal Bill however, are still on. That being said, the contribution of the Indian government towards the betterment of our country cannot be denied. The Indian government has put in efforts to improve the economic condition at the country and the economy seems to be in a slightly better shape than others in the light of recession and inflation. New opportunities regarding employment have opened up and it has seen many NRIs fluttering back. The question though, remains, “Is it enough?” The world has clearly been rocked by these ongoing revolutions. Very interestingly, these were and are being led effectively by the younger generation of the countries. The youth seems to have taken the reins of these

revolutions and are actively participating in them. Closer home, where once the masses were ignorant of their right to vote, the youth, and for that matter even the older generation, seems to have finally realized the power of voting. Various social-networking sites were flooded with people encouraging others to vote and bring into power a better government. They come from various socio-economic backgrounds and are fully aware of the political as well as economic scene around them. The youth seems to have woken up to the political and economic injustice that exists around them and are now determined to take concrete steps against it. Some of the protests that took place were violent but they did manage to capture the attention of the respective governments. If there is one point that comes out of these revolutions, then it’s the fact that people are finally realizing the importance of their rights and how they can use it to usher in the necessary changes that will help remove the problems a common man faces on a day-today basis. Could this then be the beginning of a new era? An era where the government truly functions for the betterment of the masses? Has the veil of ignorance of one’s rights and the submission of the masses to injustice finally been lifted? Could this then be the sowing seed for a better generation? It might take months oe even decades for a positive change to sweep the world but these revolutions and the youth who won’t go down without a fight contributing to it surely will go down in history. In the upcoming years, perhaps along with new technology and hopefully a clear conscience, the miseries and problems of the common man will be paid heed to. Hard times ahead are imminent but the masses seem to be thriving on Rabindranath Tagore’s quote, “You can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.” Will the efforts of the masses rouse the governments from their greed infused sleep or will it just end up being a brief flicker of hope? Only time will tell.



2011 A Satire Odyssey It was truly a sad year for a sport. One of the age-old games lost its patriarch. Little kids no more had the idol they looked upon to emulate in hide and seek. Yes, Obama Bin Laden died this year. A sad day for a few countries it was. They lost their partner who has been hiding from them and whom they have been seeking since the Afghan war of 2001. Ten years isn’t a small period. The legend of the game has left a hole. The hole is in Pakistan and the world has seen through it. Obama Bin Laden can probably win his re-election now. Wait, was that OBAMA or OSAMA? Never mind, how does it bother a North Korean?

JAVEETH AHAMED Sr. Engineer at Tata Bluescope Steel In his free time Javeeth Ahamed tries to figure out the person in the mirror. Regularly asks himself the question “Why not?” and goes to sleep longer. Forced to save the world by working in his free time. But basically a little This and some of that is what he does. 82

North Koreans have lost their ‘Dear Leader’ to natural causes. What came to him naturally, other than death, were some miniscule talents that America and the West didn’t like him copying. Stuff like producing nuclear weapons, going to war, repressing the public, no human rights or captive prisoners of war. These things just came naturally to this man – Kim Jong-il. But you know what? North Koreans needn’t worry because they have another Kim to replace him. A certain Kim Jongun. Or was it Kim Jong-nam. Kim Jong-chul is also possible. I’m sure it was Kim Jong-suk. But I’m sure their grandfather’s name was Kim something-something. Maybe Kim Kadarshian knows them? Forget it, Muammar Gaddafi would probably ask from his grave now – “What’s in a name”?

That touché line was written by Shakespeare years ago. But is still relevant in modern day English where “Wherefore” became “Why” to “Y”. Gaddafi did quite a few things in his life. He waged war against Egypt, the Lockerbie bombing, occupied Chad and killed a few thousand people enroute his publicized death. That’s all! Who cares what happens there because Twitter was busy figuring out the spelling of this dictator. Muamar Gaddafi, Muammar Gadaffi, Muammer Gaddaffi or was it Muamer Gadhafi? These newspapers confused the living hell out of us spelling his obituary. That would probably have hurt this caresser of wars a lot. But then we just have to move on. That is life. One has to move on to better things in life, Poonam Pandey for example. People took more interest in her countdowns on social network than the New Year’s countdown. The garment reduced with each count. People awaited the visuals and criticized her for not keeping up her promise to the Indian Cricket Team.The only time that the Cricket World Cup victory was a let down. Indians were let down by this “no let down” by Poonam. Sigh! Who are we to complain? Pakistan can do just better once in a while. They had a new bomb. This bomb was ISI approved. No kidding! It was painted on this girl. Veena Malik just opened the world’s view of Pakistan. The world YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

opened not only its eyes but its gaping mouth as well.Yet she had to follow the ISI directive and say “No, that wasn’t me. It had my stamp all over the place but it wasn’t me”. Whoever noticed her or not Mr. Mahesh Bhatt would surely have. After all, the other girl in Big Boss knows what it takes to get a lead. No sorry, I don’t see any similarities in the above three girls. Whatever you were thinking about, I was talking of their ability to talk their mind and to be an open book. The guts to stand out for what they are, is what I was talking about. Money doesn’t matter to them. Money doesn’t matter to a lot of people. Kapil Sibil for example. His theory of “Zero-Loss” should be advocated in leading business schools all over the world. This economic theory just put him one step ahead of Amartya Sen and has Paul Krugman still figuring out how to phrase his column out for the New York Times. Let’s say we can use his theory when we have to repay our loans to the World Bank or talk our way into the IMF. I see a huge potential in this man, he can actually save recessions simply by censoring any news of it. So you see public opinions don’t matter to this man. But it matters to some people. India saw spectacular movements this year; some fascinating support to uplift the democratic values of this country were seen. The anti-corruption movement found its roots in forging travel bills, not paying dues to the IT Department and stamp duty evasion. We look upon this great team to fight corruption. But then someone can steal their thunder. The Upper House just decided it’s time to sleep at 12, hammering the final nails into the proverbial democratic coffin. Talk of digging your own grave. Democracy was milked; the cow was left starving as if from a hunger fast. The old man was told – “Look Pal, NO LokPal”. The fluctuations were as wavy as the Sensex. Whoever understands these scrolling numbers on TV? The red and green arrows just don’t make any sense to most of us. We just stare at them and say, “You know the Sensex crashed today!” and the guy opposite you nods his head somberly. The past year saw the index just crashing and crashing. 20000 dropped YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Illustration: Shuaib Ahmed to 15000. I don’t know why I’m saying this apart from the reason that I bloody am losing money in it and hell that’s enough reason. A lot of souls like me are wandering about figuring out “How to make money fast”. I don’t know if A. Raja knows the secret. But Vijay Mallya knows how to lose it as well. Some flights never take off, but the Kingfisher calendar should be as a law given bail-out if ever required. My tax money should be put to good use. I insist. Every year great people die. Every year bad people die. Every year scams break out. Every year movements take place. Every year celebrities do something crazy. Every year some sport cherishes a country. Every year dates change. Every year life moves on. Every year is just the same as last year, only that your memory fails to capture the good and the bad of the previous year. Every year, you decide whether to find the good and live, or dive into the bad and crib. Every year I just see the satire of it. Every year starts with a “Happy New Year”. Every year ends the way you want it to. Every word of this last paragraph is the most satirical of this article. 2012 will not be any different from 2011 or 1745. But the Mayans seem to have had a different idea.



What Would Your Life Be Like? But often, in the world’s most crowded streets, But often, in the din of strife, There rises an unspeakable desire After the knowledge of our buried life; -Matthew Arnold One upon a time there lived a girl; a girl who was befallen by fear and resentment. She feared everythingherself, failure, being laughed at, not being good enough. Anything and everything under the sun startled her. She lived her life keeping her By Raina Mehta, head low. Always skeptical to show Jai Hind College, herself, always thought twice before Mumbai. standing up and talking. She kept all her greatness within her. Never once did anyone try and see through her frail exterior to tap the flame burning in the pit of her stomach. Her gut twisted and turned to speak up, to take charge of her miserable life. But courage failed to be her ally. She only wondered how her life would turn out if she thought for herself. Only if she spoke up for herself… things would have been different. Maybe then she would be less bitter, a lot less self-loathing. There would be a chance of her lips curving up into a smile, a dash of confidence. But the hardships of daily life drained her hopes. It’s easy to think about change. It’s difficult to initiate it. Then one fine day she stumbled upon an extract from a poem that completely changed her. Matthew Arnolds clearly reflected her emotions. The Buried Life. It summarized her life- suppressed, bottled up and dead. Those words seeped into her conscience and jolted her out of her slumber. Eighteen is too early an age to give up on life; too early an age to have regrets. It is age to be bold, to be strong, to try, to fail and to occasionally succeed. It was the age to grow; it was the time to live. One day she would be old and shriveled and left with nothing but regrets. “What would my life have been like?” She didn’t want that question to haunt her existence. So she made a list of the things she wanted to do, things that made her happy. She started with five, which grew to ten and so on. She didn’t believe she could achieve anything on that list. Two years from that day, today she cannot believe


how much she has achieved. Do you know what she did? She tore out of her comfort zone into the unknown and tried to reduce those guilty regrets. Who would’ve thought she would bump into Bret Lee at an airport and actually talk to him? Who knew she would actually be confident? Who knew she could grow up to be a writer? Who knew she could manage to give numerous presentations in class? Even she couldn’t believe it. But she tried. Even today I am eternally grateful for stumbling upon that poem that taught me to live. The adrenaline rush you get when you knock something off that list is something I cannot even begin to put into words. All this helped me grow; it gave me confidence. I too used to think- what could my life have been like? What if I had got on that train? What if I had pushed harder? Why didn’t I show more courage? What if I had smiled a little more? What if I had loved a lot more? Aren’t these one too many a ‘what if’s’? And you’ve only got your entire youth on your side; even then so many regrets. It hurts to know that the young hearts of our society have suppressed their dreams and aspirations to peripheral fantasies. Why is that? It is not foolish to follow your heart. It is certainly not irresponsible to do things that make you happy. It takes a lot of courage to be responsible and to take responsibility for your happiness. You live only once and to have so many regrets already is sad. Following your heart is the way, not the way out. So don’t doubt your heart. Take the leap. Feel the courage, enjoy the adrenaline. For once do something for yourself. Do not deprive yourself of opportunities. You deserve every ounce of happiness. At the end of it all, try not having too many regrets. So the next time you think of putting off life for later- not trying out for President, not putting your point forth, not loving with all your heart, keeping the smiles locked for later- think of a girl, think of me. If I learnt to smile, you certainly can. Spill all your hopes and dreams on paper and accomplish the list. Get out there and try. See what you can make of life, you will be surprised what it can make of you. See, create, and believe in life as you love it. As I sign off, I complete one other thing that contributes to my life... Writing! YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

Are You Playing Games?

T Ria Kudukar is the owner and CEO of VfoundXPvt Ltd. She has been a Copywriter, Film Director, Game/Application Designer and a friend to real and virtual people across the globe.

he words ‘Don’t you dare play games with me!’ has a completely new meaning in this day and age. Unlike the early ‘70s and ‘80s when gaming was restricted to people of the “young generation” gaming is now a part of the average working class. With various casual online games in different genres like Planet v/s. Zombie, One And One Story, Amazing Sheriff, Stack It, New York Shark, Burrito Bison Revenge, Flight, Wonderputt, Kingdom Rush, the populace just can’t seem to get enough of this interactive entertainment. We’ve seen people buy a different phone just to play games like Angry Birds or Ninjump. We’ve also seen Sony’s PlayStation being fought over and Apple’s iPad and iPhone craze, where hundreds of fans stood outside shops for hours just to get their hands on the newest piece in the market. So why is this small industry suddenly looking like a giant monster that has been hiding in the bushes all along? The reason is that the technical advancement of the 21st century has increased the number of devices (mobile, mp3 players, tablets, laptops, desktops, etc.) in the market. Thus everyone has access to a console and free games on it. We, the ‘Fast Food Generation’, want fast and interactive entertainment at our fingertips, and games gives us just that. Yet, why should you play these games? “For me gaming means the expression to be free, at work, at play”, says Alok Kejriwal co-founder of Games2win, one of India’s leading gaming companies. Restaurant City, Pet Society, Farmville, Mafia Wars, Gardens of Time, Monopoly, Sims social are big names on the social gaming circuit. “They help bring friends close at odd hours from different places and helps broaden your social network.You can gamble real money or plant with your friends or raise sheep, even loot banks,” says Akanksha Bhatia assistant director at Lemon Yellow Sun films. “Plus gaming helps decrease my stress levels in a socially acceptable manner,” she quips with a smile. Does gaming have more positives than negatives? The answer is yes. Where in the world can you role-play so realistically? Where else can you bring out your wild



YOUNG WRITERS fantasies in the make-believe world of illusion? Gaming improves alertness and exercises the mind. It gives you a sense of achievement which boosts your confidence. If you know a gamer then you know that Godmode, Cheats and Codes is what every single videogame player has typed several times on a search engine. Sonic, Pac Man, Dangerous Dave, Road Rash,Virtual cop was what every “n00b” trained themselves on for hours before setting out in the world of Need For Speed, FIFA, The Sims, Medal of Honour, Quantum Theory and Dead Rising. So what is the new gamer demanding? Is it SFX (sound effects) and unbeatable challenges? Or multiplayer and world connectivity? Then again, maybe it is the snob appeal of owning the latest luxurious gaming consoles. With the release of the new iPad, the appstore is going to be even busier than usual. “Gamers throughout the world are craving for cohesiveness and a mark on every new virtual world. They have crossed genres and mediums, gender and race. Gaming has reached new limits. It’s now a part of fields as diverse as education and advertising. Unbelievably, some gyms even provide physical-virtual fitness gaming. The latest movie is out on a game before it even hits the DVD market. Look at Price of Persia or Tomb Raider.Tron Legacy has already spun out the hot grab Tron: Evolution,” says Sudhir Shingne, a game tester and designer for VfoundXPvt Ltd. So how do you make the transition from a casual gamer to a real gamer? The answer is there is no transition. The day you see yourself trying to win a badge or find a warp level more important than stuff like asking for pocket money from your dad or meeting your girlfriend/boyfriend or trying to control your bladder and refraining from peeing because your on the last level of Dead Island, you will know that you have now been pronounced a True Gamer. “The world is changing and gaming is no longer a ‘Guy thing’. More and more women are playing games. Besides playing games (pun intended) comes naturally to women,” grins Atul Todankar, a Concept Graphic artist for games with Playcaso Studios. So where is the Indian gamer you ask? Well, surprisingly, he is right there doing just that. With free online gaming sites like,,, the popularity of gaming is reaching higher numbers than before. Why, India has had its own few filmy Bollywood games! Remember Krissh the game and Little Ganesha? Maybe not as successful as Hellboy or Call of Duty but 86

what the hell, at least the revolution has begun. Maybe someday PS7 will launch with Mahabharata: Vol 1!

Top 10 things that could kill a real gamer: 10. ERROR: The High score could not be saved. 9. Counter STRIKE is now being remade as Railway STRIKE. 8. EA games (Electronic Arts) stands for Esteemed Aunty games. 7. The Ultimate Boss of all boss levels is a Teletubby. 6. The New York Yankees+ Doodle jump + Scooby Doo = Yankee Doodle Doo 5. The game master of the game that you can’t beat is an old woman of eighty. 4. The new Call of Duty is going is named Call of Nature: The ultimate call. 3. The last level crashes... as the game has a bug. 2. The International Geography Association bought Playstation. 1. Mario… has been discontinued.


KILLING THE BEAUTIFUL increasing.With a sex ratio of 927 girls per 1000 boys, India has the dubious distinction of being the only country in the world where the sex ratio has been declining.

Razi Shaikh, writer and blogger, who rants on everything possible beneath Razi Shaikh the sun. ‘Pay Rs. 500 and save Rs. 50,000 later.’


sign spotted in one of India’s more prosperous towns. If you can read between the lines, you will get that it is asking you to commit a crime. A simple, cruel act, nonetheless a business for many. Female foeticide. An industry worth Rs.1000 crore in India. In simple words, invest Rs. 500 in wiping off the female foetus and you will save money which you would otherwise have to later spend on her. The girl child. A female. The better half, the fairer sex. But no, not in this country. It’s the country that’s vying for the superpower status yet it’s the same that fails to save its own girls. Consider this. Reportedly 50 million girls are ‘missing’ in India. Annually, a million girls are estimated to have been killed. Yes folks, that is the reality of the country today. To a society already having significant biases against women, these numbers may not come as a shock. But isn’t the notion of the girl child being a burden a thing of the past? Haven’t we as people progressed and broadened our outlooks?

Dowry, cultural beliefs, and social norms... you can list out many possible causes for this genocide. But one thing that will stand out is the lack of equal respect that women deserve. Indian society has been stagnating under social evils and the skewed sex ratio is a case in example. Technology, a boon of the modern age has only fuelled the killing of the girl child. All throughout the country, you will hear cases of the girl child killed immediately after birth. Suffocating the newborn, burying them alive, starving them to death, these are all the incidents that continue to take place even today. We are a developing nation but sometimes I really wonder what that development is. If 50% of the population isn’t treated right, it’s a miracle that this country has been surviving so far. We worship women in the form of goddesses yet fail to see the beauty that life holds purely because of them. Loving, caring and understanding, there’s a whole list of words to describe them. We all know it but giving them recognition is a lot easier said than done. A person much more than an object of lust. A person who is anything but a burden. But only humans can understand this, not the beasts that kill them. It is a woman who makes a house into a home and it is the same person he is killing when he sacrifices his baby girl for a male heir. If a woman were to do the same, it spells doom for the society, for how can you expect others to respect you and your kind, if you do not stand up for yourself?

The ground realities are far from happy. Or so for the female child. Latest reports suggest that India is the worst place for a girl child to be born. Even if she is allowed to breathe in this world, that too comes at a price. India, a hotbed for malnourished children, has girls as majority of its malnourished children.

There are laws in place to prevent female foeticide. But like most pieces of legislation in India, they work only on paper. In the real world, it comes down to us to ensure a society which treats boys and girls alike. Society must recognize the value of its women and ensure their safe passage into this world and receive the privileges of any other human being.

Killing of the girl child has been an accepted crime throughout our history.With the coming of the new era, shockingly the numbers haven’t decreased. On the other hand, owing to increasingly cheap technology, female foeticide has been

For we know that it is only when we have women on an equal pedestal with men that this county will truly prosper. Only if it sets right, the foundation of this and every society.




The Coming Era of Indian Pop Music!


K. J. Jaynathan K. J. Jaynathan is a musician who has done more than three hundred jingles for radio and television commercials.

he first Indian sound film that spoke and sung to the audience was Alam Ara, made by Ardeshir Irani in 1931. The talkies that were produced in the first few years were all film versions of successful plays staged by the drama companies, largely based on mythological stories. Since the very beginning, virtually all Indian talkies have been influenced by the musical theater format. By the 1940s, film songs as we know it today, with its distinct characteristics had emerged successfully. Within a few seconds of playing, it could be identified as a film song. It was born out of a cultural synthesis of several music genres and traditions like Carnatic, Hindustani, folk and Western pop. Indian film songs acquired an importance independent of cinema and the Indian music industry has been dominated by film music ever since the first song that was played in a talkie. The cultural niche occupied by pop music in the west is filled by film music in India. The early Indian films were just a series of songs and today every film has six or seven songs, no matter whether the story needs it or not.This is the biggest hurdle in the way of music integrating with cinema, vice versa, cinema integrating with music. There have been quite a few factors, historical and cultural, that have pushed back the growth of Indian cinema in its infancy, and film songs has certainly been one. The song sequences by characters are seen as unrealistic and illogical. They tend to shift to extra-narrative locations, even though the story doesn’t deserve it, and interruptions for song time militate against a strict definition of cinema. This greatly reduces the main thrust of the film. This is one reason why most 88

Indian films have remained at the level of photographed variety. This stronghold of Indian film music since 1930 has foiled the scope for any popular music outside cinema for the past eight decades. Fortuitously in the 90’s the Indian non-film pop music gained significant limelight. Successfully, many Indian artists came up with albums after albums and had a huge fan following.The 90s can be seen as the most significant period of Indian pop music. However, this genre could not survive on its own and eventually faded away. Pop music faced several setbacks in the 90s and most of the artists started to move towards the vast Bollywood music scene. With lack of business understanding of pop music, inadequate marketing platforms for album promotions, and above all, deficiency of music creativity, sustainably of the artists to come up with the fresh music to compete with film music, this wasn’t very surprising. Today, numerous factors are prosperous for pop music in India. Music lovers are almost tired of the repetitive song theme and music style of film music. The scenario of Indian film making is changing gradually. Directors want to experiment with story telling and unwanted mediocre songs are hurdles for these fearless attempts. Through well use of sophisticated music technology, musicians can come up with good quality of music within their financial limits, which was not possible in the late nineties. And numerous marketing platforms are available internet and through social network sites for album promotions. If the music sounds attractive to the million netizens, then likes, shares, comments, hits, million views, retweets and trending will take care of the rest of the glory once it gets viral.The ‘Young India’ seems to be the most prosperous factor for Indian pop music. With 65% of the population being young, the market for pop music is exponential. Just two things have to take place for the re-birth of Indian pop music. First and foremost, artists have to come up with fresh and innovative music albums. And secondly, support and financial backing of the music companies to promote the pop music. History says change is inevitable, let`s hope for the Indian Pop Stars!


Who I Am


ave you ever wondered why people are the way they are? This question consumes my reprieve; the time I spend in the train on the way to college, in the shower.You have to be an observer to try and figure out what makes us act like every other person on this planet except ourselves. I feel it’s the By Akshina Mehta, constant feeling of being judged Jai Hind College, - by ourselves and the world that grips us with fear and forces Mumbai. us to act submissive. Since we were kids, we have been taught to act in accordance to society. A child is rewarded if the people around him are very pleased by his talents and punished if he refuses to conform. There is this constant need for acceptance in us that is deep rooted in our childhood; acceptance from our parents, teachers, friends, even an unknown stranger. And then comes the glorious age of 18 when everything that is crass and rash is cool. If you don’t drink, they look at you like you’re an alien. If you don’t smoke then you’re from the wrong side of the world. And God save you if you’re single. Sex is “in” and virginity is just a lyric in a Madonna song. We’ve learnt how to follow, never lead. Everything that is not “American” is thrown out the window. It’s a sort of a snowballing effect. We feel the need to be accepted so we follow the American youth culture. And since were such good slaves, we churn out Americans even better than the US itself! People today spend their lives hooked onto social networking media such as Facebook and the oracle “Blackberry”. We’re all BlackBerry Boys. Phones have become more of a status symbol than an instrument of communication. People are ranked according to their phones and watches. Materialism is the new happiness. Nine year old kids go around exchanging their Blackberry pins and updating their statuses on Facebook. Mothers push out fully developed adults not new born babies anymore. Although we are up-to-date in our GQ - Gentleman Quotient - we are completely ignorant in all other fields; especially politics. Everyone is aware about the ongoings of Bollywood but very few know that our President is a woman. But because our YOUTH’S STOP APRIL - JUNE 2012

constitution grants us the right to speech, we slander everyone: politicians, Rahul Gandhi, Anna Hazare and others without having a clue about the Lokpal Bill or the Congress. And then we have television shows like Roadies, which I too watch ardently. Honestly I don’t know what it tries to portray or convey, except that you have to “play mind games” and “prove your worth”. This convinces people that they are untapped gifts of God waiting to be discovered by Raghu Ram and Rajiv Lakshman. As I write this, I feel a sense of ambivalence, for I too am a youth of this generation. We constantly feel a conflict within us. A “Mahabharat” if you will. Our hearts and our minds battle it out, till of course, the manipulative mind wins and the true heart relinquish its throne. And slowly but surely the conscience is silenced completely and the mind takes over. It convinces us that what we are doing is fine and that everything can be worked around as long as we get what we want, not what we need. There is a fixed mould that everyone has to fit into. Anybody who colours outside the lines is rejected. And hence arises the need to be just like everyone else. Settle for a night out on the town even though in your heart you’d rather be somewhere else. Force down lyrics of English songs even though they don’t make sense to you. Buy the latest gadget even though you don’t understand head or tail of it. Since everyone is doing it, it has to be right. Trust everybody’s judgment except your own. If your heart sings a different melody, you tune it out with the shallow chaos of herd mentality. We’d rather squeeze ourselves in rather than stand on our own. Why stand out when you can force yourself in? We prefer being socially secure imposters than dare to venture into the unknown alone. All these factors affect our personality and set of values. They make us mutants – more lethal, more aggressive and more inhuman. There is a fixed glass slipper that must fit all. If it doesn’t then you’re just not Cinderella. There’s more to a person than what meets the eye. If only we could put away our mindsets and prejudices and Blackberries, we can truly try and see every human for who he is. I’m obsessively opposed to the typical. – Lady Gaga I cannot maintain a semblance of normal anymore. I’d rather feel pain than try to fit in with you anymore. - Slipknot



pages in 50 bucks.That’s like 3.2 rupees per page and for three months! You practically make money on it. Your mama will be so proud of you. I already feel like its going to sell!


Girls, it’s a thick mag I tell you, 160 pages, imagine you hit the lechers with the big Ystop roll! They will surely see stars for quite some time.And you can use this as ammo to squish the roaches and spideys that scare your little heart so bad.

3 O


h dear! You guys are starting a magazine? Who is your back up? Who is the big shot publisher? Are you guys going online or print? Print?! Don’t be ridiculous! Who is going to read it? Print is dead! Nobody likes to carry magazines around anymore. So forget reading it! People are hooked to their iPhones, iPads and chats. And then of course, Google is God. We are not over confident, so we won’t say these reactions from people didn’t twist our grey cells. So one day, to lighten up the mood, we decided to make a list of reasons why would anyone would buy and read our magazine. Why would someone shell out 50 bucks for this quarterly, where a bunch of people wasted their time and energy just to collect articles from all over India, to show what the youth wrote and read? And here is a team of people racking their brains for designing, typography and graphics to give the mag an amazing look. Coming back to the list, our “kreeatyou” team came up 193 reasons. But just because it’s our magazine doesn’t mean we’ll take advantage and print whatever we want to (well, not this time anyway). So here are the top reasons to lug our magazine around!

You can just carry our magazine as an acces sory. And you totally get an oh-what-a-good- boy/girl-who-reads nod of approval. Voila! If you read it in front of your dad he will be so proud that you’re not stuck to your game/painting your nails a la Picasso.You actually read, and you’re not counting SMSes. Daddy will know you care about the world too. Dad’s chest is 56 inches now! (Mummy-papa always come first, we totally think about happy families.)


You can use our magazine as a cover when you are actually reading about Sunny Leo… err… Sunny Side Up Eggs. You can read comics, poultry mags, nuclear physics or anything that you like with Ystop as your cover! How altruistic of us! We think about our fellow brothers and sisters too. Whom you like more than us!


Finally, after all the efforts we took for your safety and image elevation, we may manage to get some of your sympathy, and you may decide to read Ystop. You will not be disappointed for sure. C’mon we DID print what the youth wants to read! A little bit of political reading wouldn’t hurt, and then you get to read about Bollywood stars and fashion too. So, we will print till you decide to read us. We hope whatever reasons we’ve given you are enough to make you buy a copy of Ystop. (Did we sound too needy?) We hope you are convinced too. If not, then we still have 188 reasons to print. We just might run them in next issue.


The obvious: to fan yourself in the heat. To protect your head from the sun and the face tanning. All this in just 50 bucks! You get 160



Youth's Stop Magazine  

National Youth Magazine.

Youth's Stop Magazine  

National Youth Magazine.