Come on in!

Hi! I’m Justin Raj, a stock broker by profession, is also a freelance Journalist, an amateur Filmmaker and an enthusiastic Marathoner who possesses the ‘bad habit’ of writing too much. And as long as that ‘bad habit’ stays with me, I keep on posting to my blog.

A blogger is basically a tech-savvy writer. He is a keen observer with a sharing mind, not a silent spectator to all events which happen around him. If a reader is a person who loves to gain knowledge, a blogger or writer is one who loves to share his knowledge and dare to speak out his opinions and ideas. Like a singer expresses by singing, dancer by dancing, actor through acting, a blogger blogs his feelings and ideas out. Literally, Freedom of Expression is his shield and the blog is his Sword.

Here in my blog, write-ups are archived in 9 labels. In ‘Sweet and Bitter’ you can read about my diverse life experiences and valuable lessons I learnt from it. ‘Published Articles’ offers you my articles which have been published in Daily Newspapers. In ‘Random Brain Waves’ you can meet up with my random (or at times, weird) ideas. Poetry writing has eventually become a new hobby as well as a part of my blog. You can read my poems in ‘Verses’. In ‘Marathon’ label, you can read about my marathon experiences, challenges and how running a marathon can shape a man’s life.

‘Vlog’ is a recent addition to my blog as I realize the potential future of visual media. Sometimes, a 3-minute video can do the magic of expression than a 3000 word article. In this label you can watch the short films, documentaries, advertisements et al I have made. ‘Favorite Articles’ consists of articles which have influenced my outlook and attitude on life. Being a tireless traveler, ‘Travel’ label takes you to various travel experiences of mine. Conducting researches is a part of Journalism. In ‘Research Articles’ label you can get articles which throw light on various researches I have conducted.

Every life meets with various challenges, diverse experiences and at the end, all those teach us valuable lessons for our future. Wise men learn by other men's mistakes, fools by their own said H. G. Bohn. I learn more by my own mistakes than others. It doesn’t mean that I’m a fool! I learn from other’s lives too. My blog is a platform for sharing not only my life experiences but also the valuable lessons, ideas and poetry triggered by them.

To my mind, blog is a thinking man's tool. Blogging is more a passion than a hobby for me. It is as if talking something to someone somewhere in world. My words keep on talking to the visitors of my blog. I can feel the magic of words! And that’s the power of blogging!

Friday, January 30, 2009

It’s Time for My Media!

Today, it is an age of digital media revolution which has brought even sophisticated communication devices in layman’s hands. From a high level executive to a rickshaw puller, all make use of digital technology in their everyday lives. Sending a text message or making a voice call is a common thing for most of the people today.

But, New Media such as internet was always a far away dream for common people. Today it is in the process of change. Internet replaced the "one-to-many" model of traditional mass communication with the possibility of a "many-to-many" web of communication by enabling blogging, emails, online SMS services, etc.

Now with the advent of latest technologies, any individual can now produce his or her online media and include images, text, and sound about whatever he or she chooses. So the new media with technology convergence shifts the model of mass communication, and radically shapes the ways we interact and communicate with one another.

The credibility of global media, being under scrutiny, gives prominence to blogs and citizen journalism in news making. Nowadays, established journalists and news organizations are acquiring news from blogs and citizens. In a broader sense, blogs have become the backbone of news making.

Usage of digital, mobile phone cameras, GPRS and Wi-Fi technology have boosted citizen journalism. Anyone irrespective of their discipline can be a media practitioner or a news reporter in their own right and create a viewership or readership for themselves. All together, new media has transformed into ‘My Media’.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

“Sorry, I’m Busy!”

It is a regular phrase I hear all around me- at classroom, households and offices. Nobody has time at their disposal. Most of the people don’t know where this time is going. Do you know why? It is because most of them never try to find out. Actually, there are always numerous solutions to a problem.
During my graduation, I was also ‘busy’. I didn’t have time to eat, sleep and study. I never knew why I was busy. However, I was just ‘busy’! “Sorry sir, I was busy yesterday” I used to tell my tutors on the D-days for the assignment submission. They smiled at me. I smiled back as usual.
Gradually, I came to understand that I was not doing anything worthful during those ‘busy’ days of my life. I was wasting my precious time pretending as if I was busy. Most of my time got wasted by talking and roaming around with friends, downloading music and movies online and other meaningless activities.
My best friend and critic, Jim Mathew too is an example for a ‘busy’ person. He observes people very carefully and find out both good and bad in them. He always point finger at my faults and the same time, appreciates and encourages me whenever I do something good. He spends most of the productive day time sleeping. But, I can’t blame him because he ‘worked hard’ during unproductive after hours by chatting, downloading music and movies online.
There was a time in my life I felt proud in telling: “Sorry, I’m busy” until I told it to one of my tutor who was a subeditor with Hindu (a national daily) while doing my diploma in Loyola.
It was the D-day for submitting our articles for department journal. Everybody submitted and was sitting relaxed while I entered the class room. I was the last man standing and sir enquired about my article. In reality, I forgot to write that article but as usual I shot at him: “I’m sorry sir, I was busy!” He chuckled and shot back: “Who the hell are you? Are you a business tycoon or what?” Whole class burst into laughter and I stood blushing. I came to know that day how ridiculous it sounds when we tell “sorry, I’m busy”.
“I have no time”, “I’m busy”, and “my ass is on fire” kind of terminologies comes out from the mouth of the people who doesn’t know how to manage their time and energy properly. They don’t know how to prioritize their activities and are also great procrastinators. I have read that busy people such as George. W. Bush, Bill Gates and Indian industrialist Anil Ambani jogs regularly in spite of their busy schedule. Genuinely, real busy people have all time in the world.
Nowadays, whenever I tend to tell, “Sorry, I’m busy”, I just think about the time management skills of Bill Gates or Anil Ambani (Since the spirit of Saddam Hussein comes along with him to my mind, I usually avoid George.W. Bush for inspiration) and swallow that phrase. And instead I tell: “I’m busy. But, I have all the time!”

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Great Indian Initiatives and Achievements in 2008.

Though crippled by communal riots, economic recession and wounded by Mumbai terror attack, Incredible India shone throughout the year, 2008. Last year we also witnessed prideful events which makes our heads up and also gifted us with some amazing personalities whom we as young Indians can emulate.
The great Indian success stories of 2008 were ushered in on January 10th by Tata Group Chairman Ratan Tata as he unveiled ‘Nano’, the world’s cheapest car. In March, his company also acquired Britain’s most famous names in automobile manufacturing, Jaguar and Land Rover. Taking charge as Commonwealth Secretary General, Kamalesh Sharma added a golden feather to India’s cap.
France conferred the Order of Arts et Lettres on Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan. The Malaysian State of Malacca presented ‘Datuk’ title to him, making him the first foreign actor to get the honour. Soumitra Chatterjee and Priyamani bagged Best Actor and Actress award respectively at the 54th National Film Awards. Malayalam film Pulijanmam was adjudged Best Feature Film and Lage Raho Munnabhai the best popular film. Bollywood filmmaker Yash Chopra was conferred the Officer of The Legion of Honour by the French Government. Veteran Bengali film director Tapan Sinha was selected for the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke Award. Ranbir kapoor, Deepika Padukone bagged the best male and female debut of the year award at IIFA awards in Bangkok.
Arts and Literature.
Eminent Hindustani vocalist, Pandit Bhimsen Joshi and Kashmiri poet Abdul Rahman Rahi were presented with Bharat Ratna and Jnanpith Awards respectively. Historian Romila Thapar was chosen for the 2008 Kluge Prize for Lifetime Achievement in the Study of Humanity. India-born British author Salman Rushdie was knighted for his services to literature and also won Best of Booker prize for his path breaking novel Midnight’s Children. Arvind Adiga, the Chennai-born author won the Man Booker Prize for his debut novel The White Tiger. Indian doctor couple Prakash Amte and Mandakini Amte was conferred 2008 Magsaysay award. Tamilnadu couple Krishanmmal Jagannathan and Sankaralingam Jagannathan share the Right Livelihood Award or ‘alternative Nobel’.
Indian shooter, Abhinav Bindra bagged independent India its first individual Olympic gold. Boxer Vijender Singh and wrestler Sushil Kumar also won bronze medals each in Olympic Games. Vishwanathan Anand won both the world rapid chess championship in Mainz and world chess championship Bonn. Sachin Tendulkar went past Brian Lara’s mark-11953 runs-to become the highest run getter in Tests. 2008 was a good year for Indian badminton players such as Saina Nehwal who brought home world junior badminton title. Other eminent players like Chetan Anand and Anand Pawar also proved their prowess in the international arena. Indian golfers, Arjun Atwal and Jeev Milkha Singh made India proud by winning various vital international events. Team India, both Women’s cricket and Junior Hockey became Asian Champions.
Technology and Defence.
In an historic event, Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle-C10 (PSLV) puts Israeli satellite Tecsar into orbit. An indigenously developed pilotless target aircraft ‘Lakshya’ was successfully flight-tested. India joined a select club in underwater missile capability by successfully test firing Sagarika, a tactical, submarine-to-surface missile. The PSLV-C9 again created history by putting 10 satellites in orbit in a precisely timed sequence. India successfully test fired Agni 3 ballistic missile, capable of striking targets 3,500 km away. On October 22nd, India’s first space craft to the Moon, Chandrayaan 1 liftoff from Sriharikota. Indian Navy too joined the bandwagon by becoming the first Indian team to ski to the North Pole.
Good Will Gestures.
Our first Centre for Climate Change and Adaptation Research was inaugurated at Anna University, Chennai. The Union Cabinet gave nod for foreign news magazines to come out with Indian editions. Resuming the service after 43 years, ‘Maitree Express’ to Dhaka, Bangladesh was flagged off from the Kolkata station. Trailing Germany and France, India too imposed a nationwide ban on smoking in public places on October 2nd. The much awaited cross-LoC trade, the first since 1947 begun with the flagging off of 13 trucks carrying goods on the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad road.
Let’s hope and wish India will achieve much more in the current year. May the success stories quoted above inspire us to attain our personal goals in coming years and as the father our nation, Mahatmaji said, be the change you wanted to see in the world. All the best for all!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Good Bye, 2008…

Few more minutes still remaining in the year 2008, time is ticking towards the New Year 2009. With New Year comes new hope, Resolutions (whether we keep it or not is another issue) and above all, a feeling of new life. Today I had the most silent New Year night ever in my life. Although I hold sympathy for the victims of both man made disasters, it was neither to commemorate Mumbai Blasts victims nor to condemn Israeli air raids in Gaza strip. It’s just because of fever I got three days back. Doctor prescribed three weeks bed rest (it’s not going to happen) and medication. Whole evening I was listening to words of wisdom of my aunt. She was giving me ideas on financial education and some life skills which she thinks I lack. I enjoyed listening to her. No parties, no beers and nothing! My stomach is stuffed with just cakes. I can hear people hooting and fire crackers bursting outside while typing this post. Hope this kind of a New Year night never happens to anyone else…
I’m wishing all the world citizens a very prosperous, eventful and joyous new year ahead! Have fun, drive safe and reach home safe and sound!


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