The Talent Bandwagon

Me introducing Ajay Kulkarni will be a little too much. 🙂

Some one who is from Nagpur and did his SSC/HSSC between years 1997-2000 might already know him as a meritorious student. His background and illustrious career so far speaks about his talent, knowledge and intelligence. If Ajay doesn’t start his own venture, I’m sure we are talking here to some one who’s gonna go very high up the corporate ladder. Enjoy your share of vision. 🙂

Somalwar. BITS Pilani. ST Micro. SP Jain school of Management. That looks like one hell of a journey. How has it been? What next?

Yeah, it has been an exciting and eventful journey full of learning from peers, seniors and from my own mistakes. The best part of this journey was BITS Pilani. Those were the years that groomed my personality and I am happy BITS happened to me. The most important part of getting into good schools and working at brand name companies is the kind of people you meet and the network you create. It is your asset which you can leverage at any point of time in life.

What next, well I am looking forward to working at a startup company into the upcoming field of digital marketing. Lets see how that works out… Continue reading

Gaurav; The Geek!

Gaurav Bhorkar is my cousin brother. There is a significant different in our ages, which led me to believe that he is still small. But then I saw his contribution on CE, then I saw his blog, and then the programs he wrote… I guess I was a poor engineering student. Guys, here is the future! GB has all the potential to become a BG! You never know. 🙂

Being from the same family, we all know how much the technology has penetrated our households (by that I mean it has not penetrated at all). With so little information available, what made you decide on an engineering career? Continue reading


Kidakaka, or Prasad Ajinkya is known to me through CE. The title of this post is how he describes himself. He has kept his introduction on his blog relatively short. So even I’d not say too many things about him. Enjoy the interview… and do read his blog. It is interesting!

Q. Prasad, frankly I’m a bit scared of the IIT/IIM brand of people. I’m a little apprehensive of them and some how find them difficult to handle. However you have been a nice guy all through out. Tell me, how it feels like being an IIMite.

A. When I was a student, it used to be an exhilarating feeling … to be counted as the creme-de-la-creme of the nation’s talent. However, as time went by and with some years of experience – working with other IIM grads and even managing some of them, I realized that this identity of being an IIM grad can often manifest itself in the form of arrogance. That path can lead to some pretty unpleasant bends. I try not to tread this path. Continue reading

Minerva in the Making

If you ask me how long did I know Ankita Katdare, I’d say I know her since she was about 10. But when I read her blog, read these answers and got to know of few other activities she does these days, I thought how wrong I was. The school going kiddo I knew is an aspiring engineer today, manages a fairly successful blog and is the Editor-in-Chief of Truly a Minerva in the making, she has surprised one and all. Ladies and Gentlemen, here is the future generation for you… enjoy the interview.

Minerva looks like a name of a very old lady and you are surely very young. What’s the secret behind the name that suffixes your initial on the blog?

Ankita: It was January 2008. I was 17 and I really didn’t know what I was doing when I first started a blog on BlogSpot. Somewhere inside my head, I had planned to name my blog as ‘Junkyard’. So I kept the name as That blog still exists. Continue reading

Catty Eyed Dreamer!

Sapna Katti! Now I don’t know what I should write about this girl who I have never met. If I tell you exactly how we got introduced, it would sound as if I’m Shahrukh Khan. But let me tell you any way. It was June 2008 when I got my first fan mail. I was barely into a month of regular writing and a girl had already written to me, telling me how good my blog was. Frankly speaking this engineer who now works in an investment banking firm is a much better writer than me. Here’s Sapna Katti unplugged for you. Enjoy Season Two! Continue reading

Few minutes with the Purist!

For all those who know him, Nilesh Jagdale needs no introduction. For those who dont know him yet, this interview should give you an idea of how interesting he is. A friendship of 4 years is what we share. But when we talk to each other, I feel as if we both are 40, were born on the same day in the same hospital and the first conversation started when we let out our first cry. This may give you an idea of what and who I’m talking about. Enjoy the interview. I’m sure you will like it.

Talking to you gives all of us (our common friends) a feeling that you probably were born and grew up in the British era, suddenly went underground post independence and resurfaced now in your late twenties. Tell us where does this love of English language, diplomatic politeness and literary jingoism come from?

I had read a collection of short stories titled ‘Life’s Little Ironies’ and this statement of yours remind me that life is indeed full of ironies. At no given instance have I advocated the Victorian language of communication but have always felt we Indians have volunteered to carry ‘The white man’s burden’ to unimaginable lengths. Although English has mobilized India socially and economically  but I don’t think it will ever be the language that bonds us together (role performed predominantly by Hindi and other regional languages). Continue reading

Testing Times

This post is on a very special request from Saandeep. Well, you know him by the name of Sandy on my blog, by the name of Raj on his blog and by a very unique name of English-Scared on CE. His real name is Saandeep Sreerambatla and he is from Hyderabad. And do you know why the special request to post it today came in? Because it is his birthday today. Happy Birthday Sandy! Enjoy!

Can you tell me why do most people from Southern India have long names?

Southern names are long, but coming to Andhra Pradesh they are a bit shorter. In Chennai the names are even long. Since we have a surname and 2 or 3 names.

Here goes the process of naming a kid, you have grand ma, grandfather etc etc… So the naming will be modern and yet mixing of all their names. For example, I have my cousin whose grandfather name is Venkateshwarlu , father’s name is RamanaRao, and his name is Venkata Ramana Veeraju , and he has a surname also 🙂 Continue reading

Kya Surat hai! Kya Soorat hai, Harshad Bhai!

Image by Harshad Italiya himself

Harshad Bhai Italiya from Surat, this is how I identify this ingenious man. My introduction to Harshad was under very strange circumstances. One day, when I was busy in some mundane routine office work, I got a call from an unknown BSNL number. The person on the other side, speaking Hindi with a heavy Gujarati accent, introduced himself as ediamondsrt and thanked me for helping him. When I asked what I did, he told me that I wrote some thing on CE, which he apparently read and was impressed. He wanted me to organise a meet in Surat. I guess it was 2 years ago. Since then, Harshad has remained in my inner CE circle and I now consider him a good friend. Here I present you an innocent but a very innovative gujju, who I’m going to call Surat ka Soorma from now on!

Harshad, or should I call Madhav? I’m pretty sure your friends call you Surat ka soorma! What do you think? What is your public image?

Yes, Why not you can call me Madhav as my most of friends call me with this Name. Madhav name comes into my life when I was living in Hostel Madhav Gurukul at Vallabhvidhyanagar during my Diploma. Continue reading


I could not find a right title for this interview. And then I thought ‘Attitude’ is the word that goes perfectly with Sachin Patil. An old colleague and friend, he exudes the perfect blend of passion, knowledge and attitude you would look for in a person who you want to be around every time. Most people on my blog know his as Bruce. Here I present him to you in a very candid conversation. I hope you like it.

Tell me about yourself is a dreaded question. But I’m going to ask you anyway. And the answer I’m expecting is the one you have never given to any one. Go on… who are you?

Let me first thank you for considering me for this initiative.

Tell me something about yourself is a Femina Miss India Question, however here it is in the right context and hence let me tell you something about myself.

I am a simple God fearing, Mom fearing, Boss Fearing and Wife Fearing man who wears the mask of being a fearless (Dabangg, as you may want to call it) person 🙂 I live for very very mundane things in life and I enjoy things that most of the people around me do that includes two (or more) pegs in peace, chicken sukka (preferably with Neer dosa) and sound sleep ( I enjoy sleeping in the afternoon when I am home )

I like making an impression of being an arrogant and blunt ( on the face ) type of person but I am not that kind. Please refer to my intro above 🙂 I actually enjoy being given importance in my social circle though I create an impression that I give a damn about it. My secret desire is to be a Rock Singer and I fantasize doing all the crazy acts that my Gods e.g. Bruce Dickinson, James Hetfield do in concerts and sometimes I do those in front of mirror when nobody is at home 🙂

I can’t get more candid than this 🙂 Continue reading

One Man Army!

My first interaction with Prateek was when he was just 20 and already a front runner to become an associate editor of For a boy just out of his teens, he showed great maturity and had more knowledge than what his other 20 year old mates had or probably what we had when we were just 20. Few years have flown past and today I feel proud to interview him. For I know, with interests in NGOs, Engineering and armed forces, today I’m talking to a future business leader.

Who’s behind the rather reticent, shy, complex yet arrogant looking Prateek Varma?

That is a bit difficult to answer because you are asking me to open up which I hardly do. The truth is that there is no one behind it. I am shy and reticent but also loud and talkative. I am a contradiction i.e. I keep contradicting myself. By nature I am shy and reserved but on occasions or when the situation demands I can be the most outspoken and outgoing person you have known. I have to be the centre of attraction and once I am, I start looking for an escape route

Complex because I have shown different personalities and I change from one to the other with ease. I grew up alone and that has a lot of benefit in a way that it gives you ample time to develop your creativity and imagination. I created different worlds and personalities through my imagination that I can go to at will. I know it baffles the other person but I seem to enjoy it.

Arrogant yes, because I have to believe that I am better than everyone around. It is some strange quirk that I have to be physically, mentally and psychologically superior to everyone else.

If I ask you to choose a persona, what will you choose and how will you describe yourself as? An unemployed graduate? A money splurging spoilt brat? A radical activist with extremist views on Politics, Kashmir and Corruption? Just another human being?

I am already all of these. But I would rather be none of these and certainly not just another human being. My fantasy would be to rule the world but in the long run I would like to be known as the man who changed the world. And I would rather not have extreme views.

You are from a family with a military background and war heroes. Don’t you think the hindrances and threats to India’s growth as world power and world economy are more internal than external?

Yes I do believe that. First reason is that we are not united. We are divided according to religion, region, creed, sect, caste etc. It was this disunity that allowed the English to rule us for 2 centuries and we have not learnt any lessons from history. Today, it is the politicians who divide for vote bank politics. Divided we fall.

Second thing is that we don’t have a strong leadership. Self interest is given more priority over national interest. Every person in power thinks that they have only 5 years to plunder the nations resource and they do that. Plus no one is ready to hold the bag, they would rather pass the buck. The way Mamata Bannerjee is misusing her portfolio as Railway minister is just one example. Beaurocracy and grass root level corruption is a big problem too.

Third is that we are a democracy only on paper. In reality our politics is like a monarchy where the child of the king is the next in line to the throne. Democracies don’t work like that. And I am not talking only about Congress; almost every party is like this.

Do you often ask yourself this question, “What next?” What answer do you get?

Actually…..No. I define a long term strategy for myself and continue with new tactics and changing old ones as I move forward. My usual question is “Did I finish the things I had planned today?” answer is usually “No you started many things but left everything in between.” There is a minute moment of depression and then another voice says, “What the heck? Go to sleep now. We will see it tomorrow.” And the cycle repeats like an infinite loop.

Quoting a dialogue from a popular movie, Paycheck. “If you remove suspense from life, even the hope fades away.” Your comment please!

It is true. If you already know what is going to happen then you have nothing to look forward to. Take an example of a cricket match. When India requires 50 runs from 5 balls to win, people start leaving the stadium. They know what is going to happen and they have lost hope. Even the players on the field know that. Similarly when India needs 1 to win from 5 overs with 5 wickets remaining, people are happy but there is no suspense. Heartbeats don’t stop; it’s more like a relaxed happiness.

But when they need 5 from 1 ball, there is still hope though very minute and every supporter and player clings on to it like their life depended on the last ball. There is suspense and hope and that makes the moment exciting and worth living and remembering.

Thank you so much for your time. Would you like to refer me to some one who I can interview here?

You are welcome. I was hardly doing anything worthwhile anyway. 😉 By the way thanks for featuring me. I know many people and naming one will be quite difficult. I think will choose the diplomatic path and skip this question.