To Be(lt) or Not To Be(lt)

To Be(lt) or Not To Be(lt)

seatbelt14th March 2016 – The day was ending like any normal day. Usual bucket load of work in office and a slight drizzle of rain on the way home. Couldn’t wait to reach home, so that I can take a bath and get ready for dinner with family. At around 7.50PM, near Doddabelle cross, Mysore Road, Kengeri, my entire night went for a toss, literally.

In one of the medians, a lorry was taking a u-turn and I braked my car when there was a distance of 10 feet. The lorry driver was following all the rules correctly. He had put on his turn indicators, was showing his hands as well when taking the turn. Any decent driver can easily see what’s happening and can safely stop.

However, a Bolero pickup goods vehicle came at full speed from the back and rammed my car at the back. The force was so much that inspite of me jamming the leg brakes, the car went forward and hit the lorry’s fuel tanks. The only thing that saved my ass that day was, when I saw the rear-view mirror and saw this vehicle come in full force, by instinct, I jammed the leg brakes immediately. I believe this slowed down the impact in front. Else, the fuel tank might have burst in flames : who knows!

I am writing this not to share the horror of this accident, but what I learnt and What I believe saved my life:


You never know when Mr. Death would want to have an appointment with you. Like I said earlier, only two things saved my life that day – I always wear seat belt when I drive. This has become a force of habit, as I driving around 50 kms everyday in NICE expressway. So, it has become a force of habit. Second, by chance, I saw the Bolero coming up in full speed behind me a fraction earlier and I could hit the brakes. This might have slowed the impact.

My humble request – Always wear seat belts when driving. You might have a family/wife/friend waiting for you when you reach your destination. You wouldn’t wanna miss that appointment, would you?


In case you are wondering what happened to my car after the impact, check the below photo gallery:

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My Passport Renewal Process – Shocked by the Experience.

This is one of my longest post. So, bear with me here…

I had taken my Passport in 2005 just for namesake but it was used for the first time when I travelled to USA when I was working in Google. Got a multi-entry visa thanks to that trip and eventually went to Dubai and Nepal, though I didn’t get stamps in my passport. However, after that, there were not any trips planned and eventually I even forgot I had a passport.

The end result – my passport expired in April 2015 and I didn’t even notice this until early January 2016. This shows how much I used my passport. 😉  I wasn’t even using the passport for address proof as the address used was a old one, that of Coimbatore, where I was staying in 2004. Now that I found out that my passport has expired, an urgency crept in, as if I might go to USA in the next fortnight… hahahaha…

Anyways, this was a good opportunity for me to update the permanent address, Spouse details in the passport. So, I went to the online portal — and created my account with my details. Gave as much information as possible and then submitted an online application under Passport Reissue cos of Expiry category. I got an appointment in the Lalbagh’s Passport Seva Kendra for February 2nd, 2016 at noon 2.45PM. Anyways, that entire week I had planned to take my paternity leave, so that wasn’t a problem for me.

I landed at the Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) at around 1.50PM and the previous batch was being called there. We stood in a queue and a lady came up with a megaphone and called up my batch number. She checked the appointment details and asked me to enter the PSK office premises.

The way this works is – First you enter a row of counters, where they verify your xerox copies of your documents and give a token number. Then you have to enter the counter’s zone. There are 3 counters to cross – A, B, C and then exit. That’s all.

My token number for A counter came within 10 minutes. Here they verified my xerox copies again, asked me to confirm all the details, took my biometrics and then my photograph for the passport. This hardly took 15 minutes. Once done there, I was directed to Counter B. This is where I had to wait, atleast one hour. However, once my turn came, they verified my original documents and cleared me for counter C. They took hardly 5 minutes to verify my original documents. Another wait of 15 minutes and my token number was called for counter C. Here they verified my originals again and the process took a maximum of 10 minutes and that was it. I Just had to collect an acknowledgement which had my file number for reference and then I came out of exit.

The entire process took hardly 3 hours. I was really amazed by the efficiency of the process there. Thousands of people coming in for new passports or getting their passports renewed but, there was hardly any process related issues. Your work is relatively easy if you carry all your original documents and xerox copies correctly. You are supposed to carry 2 copies of all your documents with your attestation.

The list of documents I carried were:

  1. Expired passport
  2. Aadhar card
  3. PAN card
  4. Voter ID card
  5. Marriage certificate

I had 2 xerox copies of all these documents and took all these originals, that’s all.

Now the kicker:

I had submitted the online application on 3rd week of January. The appointment was on 2nd February where I submitted all the documents. On 4th February, I got SMS confirmation that the passport is being printed. On 5th Feb, I got confirmation email that my new Passport has been dispatched by Speed Post. On 6th February, I got  my new passport on hand. The entire process taking hardly 15 days.

Who would have thought this is possible in India. I remember how I got my original passport done in 2005, where I had to run pillar to post to get basic information. Now, here we are in a system, where we get a passport within 15 days.

Way to Go, INDIA…


The God Rays

This photo was taken during my drive back to home through NICE road.

NICE Road is one of the best places where you can catch these amazing skyline photos, IMO. The straight roads, clear skylines with no buildings to obstruct view makes this road a wonderful place to take these shots.

Sometimes I see such wonderful skylines that I regret not setting up a dashboard cam so that  I can record/take photos while I am driving. By the time, I stop the car by the side of the road, the best view would have gone and I would have missed the shot.



Ride Free in Uber


Though Uber was late in entering India, IMO they are the main reason why cab industry is seeing such a big shift in India. The entire cab industry is undergoing a radical shift. Central and State Governments are introducing legislatures that is aimed at improving this industry.

All you have to do is follow the below steps:


  1. Install Uber app using the above link in your smartphone
  2. Create a new Uber account
  3. Link your PayTM account with Uber. If you don’t have a PayTM account, you can create one in the flow itself. It is free
  4. That’s it. You are good to take your first free ride using Uber. You will get a credit upto Rs. 600 in your account.

There are some conditions to utilize this though. Some of them are listed below:

  1. You shouldn’t be having an Uber account before. If you already have an account, then this isn’t applicable for you.
  2. You can’t link a credit card to Uber right now. PayTM is the only option of payment for Uber right now.

You might be sceptical if this works. Believe me, it does. I have already taken multiple rides. Na, nothing illegal. It’s just that whenever a new user creates account with Uber, I get a free ride worth the same amount you are getting. So, yes, that’s one of the reasons why I am recommending Uber.

What are your experiences in riding with Uber? Share your comments below…

My New TT Racket

My New TT Racket

IMG_20130128_130152 It has been more than 10 years since I started playing this lovely game of Ping Pong. My college mates know me from this game and my hostelmates might remember me playing this game until the wee hours of  the next day. If there is one game that I love the most, other than Cricket, it is Table Tennis. I don’t know why, but I had fallen in love to this game when I was a kid.

All my school life was spent in a small town called Tirupattur, near Jolarpettai in Tamil Nadu. I still remember when my father took me to Sacred Heart’s College. there were a couple of guys playing this wonderful game. I still remember pestering my dad asking that I also play this game. But that was another time, there were lot of reasons at that time why I couldn’t play there.

Fast forward to 1999, it was college time. I came to know that there was a TT table in the Senior’s hostel. And they announced a tournament within the first one month. I somehow convinced another hostellite friend to come over with me, to partner for doubles. Honestly saying, that was the First time I was seeing a TT table so close; First time I touched a TT racket; First time I saw how small (or big) the TT ball was. Ofcourse, having never played the game, I got beaten sound and round in the tournament. Add to this the ragging of 3 years of seniors. But that day, I said to a Senior who was sympathetic to me; Watch Out for Me, I will be here Next Year…

We had to change hostels after completing the first year. We moved to the senior hostel and after checking into our rooms, the first place I visited was the TT room. There were more than 30 seniors; and I was the only junior in the room. One person patted me on my shoulder and when I turned, I noticed that it was the same senior to whom I had said my famous dialogue the previous year. He was happy to see me there and he took me under his wings.

Coming to the topic of this blog, I remember how I begged my parents to get me a new racket and somehow convinced them and got the required finances – a princely sum of Rs. 350. I bought a Stag racket and was using it religiously. Never gave this racket to anybody, not even to my seniors. This was my racket and will not share it with anyone. However, during the course of time, my game started improving and started learning about TT rubbers. I first heard the name Mark V from my doubles partner Manasa. Was shocked when I saw the quality of the shots. However, I decided I will buy a custom racket when I earn my first salary. My parents honored my request with a decent racket. I will not burden them again with another request. This time the racket will be bought from my own pocket. This thought came to me in 2003, during my final year in college.

Fast forward to 2013, I decided the day has come and went to Jayanagar. Though the day started with the hunt for a decent cricket shoes, I ended up buying a customized TT racket. The final output was, Butterfly Plank, Mark V rubber for my forehand and Euro Power for my backhand. Of course, with any new games equipment, I had to first delearn my game and get adjusted to the weight and balance of the new racket. My forehand shots were going for sixers and boundaries. However, after close to a month now, my shots have started falling on the TT table. Hopefully, by this month end, my old game will be back.

Here are some of the pics of my new TT racket: