vivek's blog

Dean Jones Joins the Inanity

By: on 20 Mar 2007

Two of my previous posts - this one and this one - collided when Dean Jones joined the Set Max team in the studio for coverage of the cricket World Cup in India.

You might remember Jones for his off-color remark in Colombo after Hashim Amla (the first South African cricketer of South Asian descent) took his second catch of the match to dismiss Sri Lanka's Kumar Sangakkara. After the dismissal, during what he thought was a commercial break, Jones quipped to his broadcasting team, "The terrorist has got another wicket."

It turned out a lot of feeds in South Africa hadn't, in fact, gone to commercial; he was fired the next day, and it seemed doubtful that anyone would hire him again.

Enter Set Max, the same outfit which hired Mandira Bedi to liven up its studio. I was surprised to see Jones in the studio during yesterday's match, and here's what Set Max's business head, Sneha Rajnani, had to say about the matter:

"Most of our expert commentators have impeccable past records, expertise in their field and are in a position to comment on the game. The audience looks up to them. All our commentators have brand equity. As for Dean Jones, he is an expert commentator and we are glad to have him on board. What happened last year was unfortunate, but the man has apologised enough and it’s time to let him be and move on" (Financial Express).

While I'm generally inclined to agree that one should forgive and forget, there's just something about this particular case that doesn't quite add up: YouTube to the rescue yet again!

Bourbon: Not Just a Great Biscuit

By: on 3 Mar 2007

Did you hear the one about the guy from Bhopal who went to sleep one night and woke up as the dauphin?

Balthazar Napoleon de Bourbon, a jovial Indian lawyer and part-time farmer, has always been fascinated by France. Framed pictures of the Eiffel Tower and the palace of Versailles implausibly decorate his house in a dusty, bustling suburb of the central Indian city of Bhopal. He gave his children French names even though he has never set foot in France.

But he may soon make his first trip to Paris, after he was visited by a relative of Prince Philip, who told him that he is the first in line to the lost French throne.

This Indian father-of-three is being feted as the long-lost descendent of the Bourbon kings who ruled France from the 16th century to the French revolution. A distant cousin of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, he is alleged to be not only related to the current Bourbon king of Spain and the Bourbon descendants still in France, but to have more claim than any of them to the French crown.

Tidbit: East aar Vest...

By: on 2 Mar 2007


South Indian kaapi's the best!


Five Years Later...

By: on 28 Feb 2007

They can't go back.

"There's not even a light here. We burn diyas at night," says Mehdi from Kau-Amlai village. "My three daughters wash dishes and earn Rs.200 each a month. That's how we survive." When 62 homes in his village were burned during the communal carnage of 2002, Mehdi had to flee to Modasa, the nearest town, for shelter. Since then, he hasn't been able to return home. Local Muslim charities have built tiny 10x10 feet rooms for refugees here.

Five Years Ago...

By: on 28 Feb 2007

The killing started.

They burnt my whole family.

On February 28, we went to Ehsan Jaffrey's home for safety. He is an ex-member of parliament.... At 10:30 a.m. the stone throwing started. First there were 200 people then 500 from all over, then more. We were 200-250 people. We threw stones in self-defense. They had swords, pipes, soda-lemon bottles, sharp weapons, petrol, kerosene, and gas cylinders. They began shouting, "Maro, kato," ["Kill them, cut them"] and "Mian ko maro." ["Kill the Muslims"].

Five Years Ago Today...

By: on 28 Feb 2007

I was in my dorm room in college. I woke up in the morning, made my way to the computer and The Hindu's website, and found this picture staring me in the face:

YSS: Your Take?

By: on 26 Feb 2007

Open thread from here. Have at it.

New Blog on Iran - Please Help

By: on 26 Feb 2007

Howdy folks.

Military action in Iran looks more and more likely, and I'm pretty sure this means the end of the world is at hand. I'm not in the States just now, and I don't know what the general outlook is, or what action is being taken, but from most media sources (which I know isn't a very good indicator) it doesn't seem to be much.

Insurance Fraud or Terrorism?

By: on 19 Feb 2007

On February 10, the Press Trust of India reported on an explosion in a storage facility just outside of Nanded, Maharasthra (thanks, R):

Mumbai, Feb. 10 (PTI): One person was killed and another injured in an explosion in a gowdown near Nanded in Marathwada, police said today.

The blast occurred in a godown at Shastrinagar in Tiroda village on the outskirts of Nanded, around 600 km from here, shortly after midnight, they said.

A bomb squad was rushed to the spot. There was no prima facie evidence to suggest any terrorist angle in the incident, police said.

The godown stored biscuits and pickle jars. The blast may have been caused by "some chemicals" at the spot, police said.

Industry Minister Ashok Chavan, who hails from Nanded, visited the spot today (The Hindu).

On February 11, the Hindustan Times reported: "Mystery shrouding Nanded blast laid bare":

India-Pakistan Train Blast, at Least 66 Dead

By: on 19 Feb 2007

I'm worried that this investigation is going to be a mess, and that these innocent people's deaths are going to be used for political gain on both sides of the border, in terms of each country's domestic politics and their effects on Indo-Pak relations. Let's see what happens...

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