Price tag: Life


My best friend Deepak always starts from the end. He says, “When you’re on your death bed and think, only if…. ” Currently he is in New York and living its life to the fullest. While he understood the meaning of life as per Western belief – ‘We have only one life to live’, most of us believe the Indian mythology  ‘This is one out of many lives we have lived in past and we will live’ (courtesy: Devdutt Pattanaik). With Roti, Kapda, Makaan as our primary drivers coupled with strong social circles, we hardly get time to think ‘the meaning’ and what we want to do with ‘this life’.

There are quite a number of “meanings” that come in our way, but they come with the heavy price tags. Some of them come with Price tag: Life. Brave few among us rise up to the occasion and bargain the meaning at this heavy price.  I am going to talk show you 3 of them here.

First on the list: Ruma Roka

She creates jobs for the differently abled. Watch her story below. She had paid the price which you can easily notice in her sincere expressions – right from heart.

Next on my list: Mittal Patel

She made me aware of the Nomadic communities and the problem they are facing. But I was bold over to know that there are 10 Crore people living in this communities without any sort of record including census. Mittal has taken up a job to get them their identities as Indians.

Last on my list is Mr. Suprio Das

His work – providing safe drinking water to masses. Need I say more? Watch him speak.

But there’s one more guy that I wish to Salute and in my view, He has become a role model for many of us – who stay away from the problem because of it’s scale. Scott Harrisson has devoted his life for a cause: “To make sure every human being on this planet have access to clean water”. and He’s making long strides in his mission. Watch him how he does it. Note it is a long video, but am sure if you watch it till the end – it will leave you shaken and inspired at the same time. This one, you’ll never forget for the rest of your life.

A Big salute to all 4 of you. You guys rock.

The first three videos are from the event in which Franklin Templeton Investments partnered the TEDxGateway Mumbai in December 2012.

Have  you come across any more ‘initiatives’ that comes with a Price tag: Life?


I’m lovin it


It was not a usual sight at McDonalds store. The usual quite morning store was buzzing with life. For once, people were happy, cheering and communicating while standing in the queues. The ones who got their burgers were having it with a delight on their faces. There were few house-wives / full-time-moms in their sneakers sitting and having a good conversation over a McMuffins and coffees. Dozen college students appeared out of no where and stood in the line in anticipation with smiles on their faces. There were security guards from the nearby building, marketing fellows, nurses from the adjacent hospitals stopping by to have their morning McMuffins.

This full-of-life sight was because McDonalds was serving free McMuffins (veg and egg) to everyone. Yes Free. Just walk in between 7am to 11am on 18th March, you’ll get a free McMuffin. The campaign was to promote their free Breakfast Menu.


Am sure McDonalds will get a great mileage out of it. But more than that, this morning will be etched in many peoples memories. Those college kids when they’ll become old. That one working child  that had McMuffin for the first time in his life. Those aunties, who after their regular morning jogs, have something to share with their peers during their morning walks.  Those young IT professionals who were having burger in one hand and calling all their friends with another. And lastly, yours truly, who got one for the wifey and she said thanks with the smile. I do get breakfast from McDonalds on odd weekend mornings, but never before she had it with a smile on her face, like today. (She read about the free offer in the Newspaper)

Thank you McDonalds, I’m lovin it.

Next: Storizen

Infographic: #NokiaAppTasting


Dear Bloggers,

Here’s the infographic of the event, do click on the image to enlarge. Feel free to add it in your blog, just leave a link back.

Popular pictures of the event

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Link to all the popular pictures of the event

Feel free to add it in your blog, just leave a link back.


PS: forgot to mention – my app idea won me a Nokia Lumia 🙂

#ink2012 on twitter: Day 2


Day 2: Fantastic musical performances, dance, comedy, poems, wonderful, wonderful and wonderful.

Most talked about words:

  • Love
  • Music
  • Life
  • Matt
  • Joi
  • Stefan
  • Ito

Most active users:

  • @KavisMusings
  • @rganorkar
  • @vishalgondal
  • @chumbak
  • @mitu2k83
  • @parmeshs
  • @Prakharmisra
  • @bilalghalib

twitter: @mukeshrijhwani

the thermocol ball


I was giving finishing touches to the slide deck in my study when my 3 year old sweetheart came up and said, “Baba see this…”

I ignored her as I was completely engrossed.

She said, “Can I eat this?”

That was ‘khatre ki ghanti’ and I looked at  her.

“Where did you get that?” I asked curiously.

“Gareema gave me.”

Gareema and Deeksha are my twin daughters.

I stopped everything and went straight to the living room, couldn’t believe what I saw.

“Gareemaaaaa,” somehow these Indian names that ends with a vowel adds a lot more punch when you scream.

Anyways, the reason for my scream, she turned the bean bag upside down, had open the chain and was taking out small thermocol balls from it.

Looking at me, she stopped for a moment. But Gareema being Gareema, she started pulling out those tiny balls at a rapid speed with a giggle. Observing this reaction from her sister, Deeksha joined her and both of them started pulling while they looked at my furious look. Soon, the bean bag was empty.

They continue to giggle and then they started throwing those balls in the air. I couldn’t resist the fun they were having, instead of stopping them, I joined in. I too started flying thermocol in the air. I picked those tiny ones and one by one showered on both of them. They copied that and showered me with those balls. Deeksha then put some of them in my t-shirt and started laughing. Gareema joined in and soon they made me look like a big fat Santa.

At that time, my phone rang. It was wifey. She started with the standard question, “How are these girls doing?”

I said, “They are fine….. they are just …………..drawing with crayons…. ”

“Ok, I will be back in another 10 minutes. bye.” She kept the phone.

Gosh, I thought, I have to clean up this mess before she arrives otherwise all of us had it for that day.

I said to to the girls clapping, “Ok…. ok….. mama is coming….. let’s clean up… fast…”

Girls promptly changed and started singing the nursery rhyme in unison while cleaning up, “Clean up… clean up… everybody do yourself… Clean up…”

We manage to put the thermocol back in the bean bag few seconds before the mama arrived at the door.

“Babies….” she said, “How are you?”

Deeksha (Another MKGandhi in the making) said, “Mama, we cleaned up everything. We were playing with small balls”

“Hmm…Wow,” She didn’t bother to clarify, “Look what I’ve got for  you”

All of them went inside to look what Mama has got for them. I took a deep breath and looked at the light purple bean bag that had a logo of Surf Excel. I won that bean bag by answering one of the question in the Indiblogger meet. I remembered the event…

Aug 4th 2012 – Hotel Capitol

“Let’s park there,” Wifey pointed to the empty slot in parking lot of the Hotel. I parked and walked inside the Hotel where Indiblogger meet was supposed to start. I chose indiblogger meet over the event at Google India, because at Indiblogger meet, I could my wifey. I was in a dilemma, whether I made a mistake because being at the event at Google India would gave me a little more insight in the Tech world (I am a hardcore techie – just to remind you). But boy what an event it turned out to be.

It started with the introduction round. Wow, what an interesting, fun and touching round it was. I heard the stories that made me laugh, cry and inspired.

I remember the guy who gave a funniest introduction ever. He had attended all the Indibloggers meet and complained about the black and white color t-shirts that indiblogger gave it to him.

In another introduction, a woman said, “my family doesn’t know that a gifted artist is living among them,” was the most hilarious line spoken in the event.

I was touched by the stories of a surviving cancer patient and a handsome young blogger – who blogs on the experiences of getting blind.

Some interesting stories from a girl who worked in India’s best company yet find her job – boring. Another was of a hardcore writer, who wrote only for himself and didn’t want anyone’s approval.

During introduction some questions were being asked, me and wifey were quick to answer and in no time – we had two bean bags in our kitty.

Group games started. We were playing ball again. All of us were taken back to the age when all of us were kids. So much fun.

At the end of the games, Yippie my team (orange) won. Guess what, I was rewarded with a Samsung DVD player.

click on the picture to view all the event photos

The high tea had some sumptuous sandwiches and delicious finger food.

It followed by a detail and humorous session by Surf Excel brand manager Mr. Nair on ‘Why the washing machine was the best invention of the century?’ and also about How new Surf Excel with vibrating molecules is the most improved washing powder of this day.

At the end, new relationships were forged, smiles were exchanged and the experience were etched in our brains for long time to come.

This was one of the best days of my life because

  • we brought home a car full of goodies
  • 4 tshirts
  • 2 kg surf excel
  • 2 bean bags – a light purple ones. Girls love playing with them.
  • 1 Big Gift hamper that contain a big Dove shampoo, a big Dove Conditioner, a perfume, a body lotion and a hand wash.
  • and most important of all a samsung DVD player.

The DVD player has USB, so now we watch most of the movies directly by connecting a USB drive in to the DVD player. We have now lined up 50 movies to watch.

But the most important gift from this #SoakNoMore Indiblogger meet is my wifey got back the inspiration to write. She created a blog and till date she has more than dozen entries already in her blog.

Thank you Indiblogger and thank you all the people behind SurfExcel #SoakNoMore  meeting.
PS: for all social media enthusiast – #SoakNoMore and #Indiblogger were top trending topics on twitter on Aug 4th and Aug 5th. A perfect social media campaign.

Indibloggers click here to promote

Sunday morning


Wifey’s cry for help shook me out of my Sunday morning sleep.

There are few pleasures which gives me a high – one of them is getting up late on a weekend morning and the other one – an afternoon nap. Because I find night is a mighty wonderful time to waste on sleep.

Coming back to the cry, Wifey came to the bedroom and said, “Liza is here again ……. I hate her ……. please handle her fast……… now.”

Getting up with a grumpy face, I searched for her. Found her hanging around in the kitchen. My two little dollies, unfazed by this whole melodrama, continued to watch this while having their Sunday morning breakfast.

Sounding utmost cool, I took Sunday’s newspaper and confronted  Liza. I tried to explain to her in non-verbal ways that this is the Wifey’s place and she can’t just barge in whenever she feels like. She understood the whole thing, but just paced from one end of kitchen to the other with her restless demeanor. I tried it once more going on my knees. She continued the same behavior.

In the mean time, Wifey was observing this whole drama was showing her restlessness in the most animated way – jumping up and down, closing her ears and eyes.

I yelled at the Wifey, “Please go in for God’s sake. Go.”

I practically locked Wifey in the bedroom to deal with Liza alone. Coming back to the kitchen, I couldn’t find her. I frantically started searching. Has she left already? Searched for sometime and found her behind the bookshelf. I again tried to make her understand that this is not the way and she should cooperate. Liza didn’t buzz.

I threw up my hands in the air, “God, why do you always do this to me?”. I tried one last time. But Liza being Liza, she has a mind of her own. She practically refused to co-operate. I gave up.

I had to resort to violence, sorry Bapu. I searched for something with a flat base, couldn’t find any. I took out my slippers and BANG. She tried to escape and hide somewhere else, but things had gone beyond the negotiation point. I took a final aim, cursed God, said a small prayer, and BANG again. She was dead. Yes, just like that, silenced just for being in the right place at the wrong time. I peacefully wrapped her up in the newspaper and threw her in the garbage bin outside.

My younger one came running behind me and asked, “Baba, where is Liza(rd)?”

~ * ~

PS: Felt guilty all morning. Then I thought the best way to get rid of this guilt is to pen it down in words.

PPS: Are there any smart & non-violent ways to deal with these creepy-crawly-creatures? Please share the ideas.