Archive for August 2008

replacement on expiry

August 31, 2008

What happens when you grow old? Ofcourse you expire!

But growing old was easier in those good old days when you had no internet. Life was moving through less traffic on the roads of time! It was easier to navigate when destinations were definite, and wayside landmarks static. Now, every morning dawns differently. Just go through the roads of Chennai, the once upon a time really lovely but always wished and therefore described as a lovely city, and you will know how much you are outdated. The road that led me to my favourite restaurant is no more a thoroughfare, I have to take diversions. And, at times out of habit I may enter an empty road with no one honking from behind, just to find an onslaught of traffic from the other side simply because the cops decided over their midnight tea that the road shall henceforth be just one way. With a beard long enough to evoke a sympathetic scorn from the traffic cop, I am able to get away with mild reprimands most of the times. But life just doesn’t move on roads. It travels on time, and I do not encounter sympathetic cops there.

I had my first computer when I was thirty five and I had the best machine available at that time- an XT! There was no MS office and ofcourse no MS word. GB was something never mentioned by anyone and by the time I upgraded and got my internet, I was already thirty seven. The machine did not have windows. I felt at that time I was moving on with the times and having a firm grasp on the new stuff that science kept offering. By the time I turned forty, I had to keep upgrading the machine almost every year if I did not want to get outdated. Well, I thought, science is indeed taking rapid and long strides. Slowly I turned away from the monitor so that I could see the screen that destiny keeps opening every moment for me. Life meant other pursuits, not just typing commands on the screen. As I kept focusing on life’s screen and its display of destiny, my computer screen kept growing in an uncaring and dark manner. When I came back to it, the screens held many new things.

I was so used to talking to people face to face, but now anonymous and pseudonymous people were chatting away to their fantasy’s content. My lazy postponement of replying mails could no more be blamed on the usually innocent albeit inefficient postal system. I could read scientific abstracts almost as soon as they got published. By the way I have always made an abstract out of full length scientific papers the way I skimmed through them and so this was a blessing, undisguised. With wonder and curiosity I tried to keep pace with my computer. But that was not for too long! I gave up, leaned back and learnt to use simpler key tricks like an eighty year old learns to use his walking stick. Life was still easy. I had no regrets or complaints, till this morning.

I happened to glance at The Week, the weekly magazine and its cover story startled me. It describes how the girls of today are sexually uncaring, free, unabashed and so on, though not in these terms. The story is about the sexual freedom –desired and/or experienced- by the current generation of ladies. Girls, it seems, are no longer stuck up about virginity, single partners, marital honesty ala fidelity and such old world concepts. It should have startled me morally. It didn’t! Since I meet a lot of young girls and talk to them I knew that The Week was almost factual, in the sense that many young women of today do not hesitate to touch and talk, and that is not a sexual escapade but just an attempt to internally assert their equal opportunity social movements- one has to be lenient to the scribes who must at any cost make any sensitive issue sensational. I was not just curious or impotently angry at the story, I was just jealous! I wished I had been born later!! not for the sake of enjoying life and companionship in the sexual sense , but for the ease of retaining my many lost pals who faded because of unused friendships.Since this blog is not about my scruples or about the integrity of the women of The Week, let me come to what made me write this.

There were, ofcourse as usual, experts who gave their comments on this psycho-social phenomena. One comment went like this: these girls would do it now, but soon they will grow old and will be replaced by young ones, and then they would feel low, depressed and rejected. I hope my dear reader would remember that sometime back I had declared I skim and not devour the written word. Well!! My worry was about the expired products. Not all will be taken by an optionless soul, like the one in a Chinese movie whose name I cannot ever recollect. So will there be many that are left over to be trashed? What will happen since the products have more longevity but less usability (like the VCR at home)?

One has to grow old. Old has to give way to the new. These basics I presume are still in vogue. Perhaps the expert was right. Perhaps these chik-lit cuties will get depressed. So what? Only a bio-neuro-chemical depression needs treatment. All reactive depressions need only supportive therapy. What would be the support for all these prophetically doomed females of our species? Time!! And, its most useful adjuncts- common sense and reality orientation. So, it is not doomsday for those damsels least-dressed . All they have to do is keep tracking time. It will move fast. It will keep giving new images. Just accept that your moments are passing, and then you would rather lean and look forward with the joy of curiosity than backward with the bitterness of envy.


they are at it again

August 31, 2008

A nun was burnt. It is just incidental that she was a nun. She could have been any lady. In the fiery final moments she would have shrieked, not with the passionate love of God but with pain- a pain exactly similar to the sisters, mothers and wives of the arsonists. She was not the enemy of the fanatic mob. She just belonged to another group which had another ideology. I have no idea whether she was a fanatic or a fraud. I do not even know if she provoked the fiery mob. I do not even think she may have been right in her views. But, though those flames have not scalded me directly, the news has charred my mind with a hurt. I am hurt that my country men are losing their sensitivity and sensibility. I am hurt that selfish leaders are goading idiots into a riot mode. I am hurt that I am just potent enough to write on the virtual space instead of directly interfering in this social sickness.

This is not new. Neither the feeling of impotent rage nor the happening that hurts is new. But every time such a thing happens, it hurts. It puts me to shame. Like the arm-chair analysts of yesteryears, there is this new lap-top-indignant Indian breed into which I have willingly initiated and included myself for it is easy to be angry from the safe distance, the comfortable room. But the least we selfish, cowardly but superficially concerned and angry, pseudo-intellectuals can do is talk about these things. Talk with the hope that some sincere and selfless member of the society would do something.

Some of the news creators say that this was a retaliation by a righteous(!) mob. The mob had lost a veteran member and was grief stricken. The ordinary you and me would shed tears, but not this mob. They become angry. Perhaps if their leader is allegedly taken away by God, they would torch down some temples; maybe they would even stop trying to build a temple. The mob that inflicted these burns on our social fabric belongs to a particular party. Their anger was allegedly created when one of them was killed.

Like the female nun who died in the hands of the mob, it was a Hindu swami who was killed by his enemies. As in the case of the nun, I have no deep knowledge about the swami. Though I read that he was having a strange habit of creating ruckus every Christmas, I do not agree that he had to be killed. The sorrow of the fact of the matter is that religion has become a touchy subject in this secular country. I honestly don’t care whether a Christian or a Hindu is killed, but I am pained when a man or a woman is killed because she or he happens to follow whatever their religion demands; and am more incensed when the killing is done by a cowardly face-dissolving mob.

A Christian and a Hindu have been killed; many more Christians and a few more Hindus are also getting killed. Temporarily the Muslims have been left out of the killing fields. But soon the government will do something, some more talking and some more hoodwinking. Evidences and accusations will be promised a fair trial. Tehelka tapes, notes and printed material have already started gathering dust. There will be some more enquiry commissions. Some retired judge will have another stint of salaried pomp and an office. After a brief breaking-news and flash-news game, the socially-committed but TRP-obligated newsmen would scourge for other sensations. The print media too would send this matter to the second page and soon out of its pages. We will begin our daily routine. We would go on to do our religious rite-oriented activities. Some day in the future another outburst will be reported. And the game will start all over again. What is wrong?

Criminals just get away too easily. Government is more concerned about retaining itself than ensuring peace and harmony. News-persons who should be stirring our consciences are focusing on their own sensational stories- after all, all the news gathered and briefly told can someday become a book. We have no time to pause and ponder. Our stock watch and ad-watch are consuming all that is left in our mechanized minds. Politics is no more about policies. It is not a blunt and apathetic nation, it is just that every one’s vision has become selfishly narrow. What a situation!! Can there ever be a more fertile ground for mobs to be instigated, hatred and violence to be nurtured, and for petty, perverse politicians to play verbose and venomous games? They are all at it again.

The senseless and savage mob needs its daily money and alcohol. The sick people need just an assurance that the mob will not turn into their streets. The politicians need any and every gimmick to try to make people vote. Not that voting really matters, for the candidates and the poll process will all be crooked.

Though the entire system appears to be flawed and the society happens to live in its paradise of folly, the main problem is the new found religious fanaticism. If one can kill another and escape the wrath of God and the terror of hell, how can legal punishments be a detriment to unleash the un-evolved violent nature? Especially when the loop holes are larger than the laws!

Religion and race have always gone hand in hand. Using any one of these potential weapons one can cause havoc in any society. Let us just ignore for the time being the oft-referred Hitler, and look back upon our Indian leadership.

Tilak was the one who used religions sentiments in a brash and direct fashion, and it worked only because Vivekananda’s weakness for universal religious brotherhood could not douse and light up the sleeping Indian slaves. Then came Gandhi. We all know and remember him as an apostle of peace who preached non-violence. Ofcourse he did make it his life’s mission to focus on non-violence. But, if only non-violence and non-religion were to have been his commandment, imagine how India would have become. Even this day fat , hungry and thirsty politicians pretend to fast and observe non-violent protests following his style. If Gandhi had not encouraged religion, BJP would never have even been considered by Indian voters. Possibly the ‘Ram’ of Gandhi was not just the blue colored, calendar-art inspired god, but a more mystic and true divine power. But since these things were never spelt out to the illiterate masses that worshiped Gandhi enough to get their skulls broken, religion and its co-ordinates continued as our heritage and his legacy. Now in the hands of criminals and money-power oriented politicians religion has become the simple spark that can make the whole country turn and stare. Defying archaeology and mocking the courts, mythic narrations have become themes for slogans. How many would pause to ponder when such stories heard from the time of (and by) grandmother’s grandmothers are used to fuel a foolhardy indignation? Religious faith, an unquestioning acceptance of myths as facts, is not just a hindu phenomenon. It is pan religious. Therefore is it dangerous, omnipotent t and omnipresent like the gods it alleges to follow.

Religion is no more used in the gandhian way to inculcate values and moral systems in the minds of the public. It is an easy fuel now to inflame the minds of idiots and jobless mobs. It is now a potent weapon to disrupt democracy. It is the easiest way to spit on the face of secularism. It is an election tool and a mass-gathering technique. It has been so used in the past and the unscrupulous have tasted blood. They are thirsty again. Therefore they are at it again. They will be at it again and again till we wake up. Let us atleast know that the enemy is within the country.

No na? NO!

August 30, 2008

Yes na, No na. Why na….so on say the current gen. `na’ing evry word is not an unusual phenomenon. In my earlier years we used to say `yes no?’ and sometimes `hye I was kidding no’ and things like that. `no’ing was a common addition to a word or a sentence. But in the paradigm shift of generations no has been replaced with na. Well this article is not about no or na, nor about English and its usage. This is about a ride I am afraid I am going to be taken- a car ride!

I like cars and I like driving. I had a lovely morris minor which I had been driving till the engine died beyond any possible intervention- mechanical or divine. I still have the car in my backyard, with loving memories. And again this article is not about my love for a car. It is about a car which I promised myself that I would love.

I was like one of the guys who claim to be potential grooms and drool at the pictures of women who willingly display their pictures to get selected as a marital mate. I saw the pictures of this car (and many others too) and felt that I had found mine! Like in so many miserable marriages of India, money became selection criteria. This was affordable. This was perfect, like having a wife, who costs very little to obtain and who can be maintained at an affordable level, yet who can be used to go to social gatherings with some form of respect.

Like all those grooms who settle for the affordable and available bride shelving deepika into a reference shelf for fantasy use only, I was eagerly awaiting the arrival of the good day when I could put my hands on the car. Though I would have been termed middle class and just tolerated by the valet parking gentlemen of starry hotels, though this additional object would cause some distress in finding a suitable place to keep, though it may actually be used with a pang of jealousy when an audi or a benz pass by, I was determined. This was going to be my car. `I can and therefore I shall ` was my philosophy for my new found passion. Again, like most of the potential grooms I began to build little dreams about my little car. I had blind faith. I was sure that I would take possession of the car this year. After all this was the year of the Nano according to media headlines. I was right na? I wasn’t wrong no? I wonder!!

With protests in the building site, sincere and real yet political and farcical, the fate of my little car seems to be dangling dangerously awaiting the divine political and saintly business souls to bless and make the project proceed. Again this makes me wonder. And I am not keeping on wondering every now and then because the whole matter is wonderful but because the whole thing is such a brutal slap on my sensibility and I am not even feeling the sting of the pain inflicted on my honour.

The project was declared in the grandiose manner that it deserved. The comrade country that embraces capitalist contribution with cool political sense and alleged social commitment, gave enough (perhaps more) land for the project to commence. There was a small snag at this beginning. The land belonged to poor farmers who preferred to have and use their lands despite the offer of monetary compensation. The disgruntled farmers would in the normal Indian course have been silenced with money or shut up with the strong arm of political law giving them a tight slap. There were protests- mild in the beginning but becoming louder as weeks passed on. Ms.M, one of the many magnetic dreamers of the coveted PM post of the country decided to fight for the down trodden- come on, they have votes. Then began the most disgusting fiasco of the communist state. The CPM in the government condemned the attack on these farmers while the attacks were designed and executed by their own CPM cadres. The pseudo-righteous government was watching their comrades ravage the villagers’ homes and even kill some of them. They were of course as is their wont, issuing statements that were not even from the tongue but from standardized phrases of Governmental apathy and impotence. There were riots, looting and killing. Turmoil and tears, blood and pain in the area did not deter the industrialist from building the factory that was to roll out the dream car which should wipe out the problems of Indians. From the very beginning the place was besieged with problems. And the problems were the result of political arrogance and the industrialist’s ignorant premise (based perhaps on past success) that finally money will win all. It still may, after all a lay person like me has to depend on the news offered by the media who need sensationalism than analytic accuracy nowadays.

This is what I have understood. The project was given land that belonged to farmers who were not willing to give it away for whatever the compensation. This situation was there even on day one when some people would have posed for some photographs marking a new beginning. Despite the protests, the factory did come up, and if current reports that nearly 50,000 workers are unable to continue the work, the factory must have been built over a period of time during which this issue could have been resolved. But with the support of the comrades in and outside the government the factory felt safe. After all these poor farmers can be hushed and pushed away any time! Well, it so happened that these farmers had grit. The courage was born because they were right and grew because they were right about their rights. With politicians entering the fray to maximize their vote banks, the situation just was bound to worsen. Yet the Tatas went ahead. Why? What gave them or rather who gave them the confidence? Perhaps the police and the angry comrades who went after the villagers with unabashed violence would have made the factory a faux fort. Perhaps the political and monetary clout was so enormous that they felt they could go on and do what they wanted.

Then came the show. Live coverage on TV showed the big Tata cramped inside the small Nano but still smiling as he drove it on to the stage. The world gasped and India cheered. The villagers were temporarily forgotten. Cameras had turned away from them though violence had not. India was promised the car before the year ended. Even BMW owners were waiting to buy one just for seeing what it was. Slowly the one lac car was going to cost a `little` more than a lac, said the news leaks. Ok, said simpletons like me. I had even started saving five rupee coins to manage the deficit.

With just a couple of months before the alleged rolling out of the car to happen, Tata became concerned. He is worried. He is pondering. And at times he is even thundering that he would rather lose 100 crore or something like that than put his employees at risk. Oh how sad, comment the media, that he will have to lose that much and once again start scouting for land in some other part of this land. There are still many more farmers owning land. They can still be bought or bullied. All fellow industrialists tut-tut the turn of events. One of them say it will bring down the country’s image. The image that would be unblemished if a few farmers are killed and kicked for wanting to hold on to their small pieces of land. Mamta may feel victorious, Budda may feel frustrated, pseudo communists will feel vindictive, politics will go on.

Tata gets a breather. The car need not roll out now and accrue some loss owing to its ambitious pricing. The villagers and farmers of Singur may get more beatings. Power brokers would make a quick buck to relocate the factory. The common idiot, like me, would have to drive the dream car in dreams till the factory is built and then the car is built!

A shrewd businessman with years of successful mergers, acquisitions and other areas of expertise in marketing as well as management would have sniffed trouble even a week before the factory blue print was put on his table. Yet the show went on. Now, with the dates nearing the moment when the little cars should be clogging Indian roads, he becomes aware of the problems, gets concerned about this employees, bravely contemplates losing hundred crores, but he does not say anything about giving me my car this year!

So what na? No car na! The `na’ becomes ‘no’ again. Roads have gone to the past in which the new car won’t be present. My middle class mindset will start nurturing another dream in utter selfishness and absolute disregard for some poor man who is fighting with tears and blood to save what belongs to him. The businessman would launch another campaign and the media will try to suck me into believing it. Politicians will have a field day. And I will always wait to be taken for another ride!

medicare, moneycare

August 28, 2008

.this is a blog i recieved from one of my internet friends. this blog does not need additional comments by me. spread the news to create awareness.


We were living in the UK for few years; our family includes me, my wife (Padma), and our 7 yr old son and 8months old daughter.   My wife had a symptom of ventral hernia (slightly bulged abdomen), we had consulted General Physician and Surgeon in the UK and advice was that she needed a surgery to have a mesh to fix the problem with a few weeks rest.    We were also told that this is not an emergency and it can be done anytime though earlier is good.   In fact the surgeon whom we consulted in UK talked about an example of a lady having this done for 30 years of the symptom.    My wife did not have any specific pain or something except a small discomfort of bulgy abdomen (like a 2 months pregnant lady) and she was in her normal routine of taking care of our children, taking our son to school, household work, etc.
We were planning for Christmas vacation in India in Dec 2007,  we thought we will consult some ‘good’ doctors over in India and take a decision of when we will do the surgery if required and possibly felt doing in India is good because of family support.   We have got a reference of Dr J S Rajkumar of Lifeline hospital and we booked an appointment to meet him.

We landed in Chennai on 14th Dec 2007 for a three weeks vacation, met Dr Rajkumar at his city hospital (Rigid hospital) in Chetput on 15th Dec 2007 (Sat) at about 730pm.   We have explained him the background, shown him all the comments of UK surgeon, medical reports related to my wife pregnancy, deliveries, etc (she had delivered both our children normally).    After few minutes of assessment Dr Rajkumar told us this hernia requires laparoscopic surgery and we can do this next day itself.   We were little concerned initially of getting this surgery done the very next day  (particularly we were still not out of jet lag and she was feeding our baby) and got convinced with the ‘salesy’ words given by the Doctors.   To quote a comment from the Doctor “she will run in two days time and can lift two suitcases and you can return to UK as per your plan on 3rd Jan 2008″).      Also Dr Rajkumar told us that he will be on travel for 3 days from 17th Dec and moreover he was teaching Post Graduates on 16th Dec about laparoscopic surgery and let us get it done on 16th Dec.  

Then my wife was put into all sorts of equipments in the hospital (in the name of assessment); blood, urine, ECG, MRI and so on and the tests were conducted till about 11pm on 15th Dec.   In fact they have opened the labs after closing hours and got the test done and handed over the test results to us.     They had some problem in the ECG and we were told that ECG can be done on the next day at Lifeline hospital.

We were asked to report to Rigid hospital at 5am in the morning.  Think of it, we went our residence around midnight and my wife had rush on some food to keep compliance on the fasting 8 hrs prior to surgery.    After preparing for the hospital visit that night and a couple of hours sleep (3 hrs or so) we reached Rigid hospital on 16th morning at 5am or so and from there we were transported by an ‘ambulance’ to Lifelife hospital in Perungudi (outskirts of Chennai).

We reached the hospital at 630am, paid some initial advance for the surgery and we were given a room.   Padma went through some more basic checks like height, weight, etc.    Padma was taken to the operation theatre at about 10am in the morning on 16th Dec.    After the laparoscopic procedure she was moved to post operative ward at about 12 noon and I have met her in the afternoon to say a small hello when she gained consciousness.    Dr Rajkumar met us on 16th Dec afternoon and he in fact congratulated me for successful surgery and said he has used proceed mesh (costly one) and advised his staff to move Padma to normal ward in the evening as she had to feed her baby.   But, Padma was moved to normal ward only on 17th Dec morning, she was on IV fluids as per normal post operative procedure.  

Padma started to develop some fluids in her abdomen which duty doctors / surgeons have ‘rightly’ observed.   She was put in some series of  tests on 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th – tests include multiple ultra sound, multiple CT scans, pricked her abdomen and taken fluids, she had a long tube through her nose overnight to collect fluid for tests, etc.    We were told the fluid is normal after surgery and it will be alright after she passes stool, etc.

In the meanwhile Dr Rajkumar returned from his travel and seen Padma on 19th on 20th Dec evening along with other surgeons.   He made an assessment and he told me that he might want to do one more laparoscopic surgery to find out what is the fluid about.   He wanted to do a surgery on 20th Dec evening itself, but he could not proceed as the hospital has given solid food that afternoon – hence anaesthesia could not be given. (lack of co-ordination among departments, time lost here, may be she could have survived if they have did the surgery on 20th itself)

On 20th Dec night, fluid started oozing from Padma’s abdomen stitches, after the duty Doctor’s assessment she was shifted to ICU.    We really did not know what complication she developed in the ICU.

On 21st  Dec (Friday) morning around 830am I was called in to the ICU to convey that they are going to perform a surgery and I had to sign “
high risk consent”, they were telling this in front of my wife (just think of a patient hearing this before the surgery).  I was just shocked at that and had no options to sign whatever they wanted.    I said “all the best” (my last conversation with my wife) to my wife and she was taken to Operation Theatre.
While I was discussing with the Doctors at ICU, the cashier in the hospital kept on calling me on my mobile.   When I met the cashier he asked for Rs.60,000 to be paid immediately and I told him take Rs.40,000 and will give you the balance later in the day.   Bang a reply came,
you have to pay the money to for me to give clearance for surgery.    When I expressed my unhappiness about the comment, he insisted for me to sign a piece of paper saying that I will give the money later in the day.    (What money minded, in-human attitude!)
We had no news from the hospital on their own about the surgery, I had enquired the staff nurse and visited my wife in the ICU and learnt that she had a diagnostic laparotomy (open surgery) and there was hole in the intestine which was fixed.  

We have meet Dr Rajkumar at about 3:30pm on 21st Dec and understood that there was a duodenum rupture and he has fixed it, at the same time he removed the mesh which was fixed on 16th Dec.  She was also paralysed and put on ventilator as she was waking up.  He explained it was between life threatening and beauty so they addressed the duodenum rupture problem.    What we were puzzled were, how did the rupture happen? for that explanation given were

 it could be due to ulcer.  My wife had no evidence of ulcer in the past.   Explanation given was 40%+ cases of ulcer is silent and there will be no symptom (I lack medical knowledge to appreciate this)
 it could be due to post operative stress (so many test post operation without any explanation of what we were doing could have created the stress on Padma is my argument)
On the same night (21st Dec) at about 930pm, I was called in to the ICU and Doctors conveyed that my wife condition is critical – her pulse is high, BP is low and they were attending to her.   I insisted on talking to Dr Rajkumar immdly, but they refused to connect me to him at first and finally managed to speak to him.   Dr Rajkumar came in around midnight and explained that the lungs are getting affected (shown X-ray of white patches on the lower portion of lungs) and she was the most serious patient in the whole hospital that time and they were trying their best.    He also said, it will need another 12-24 hours of observation before they can say anything.

We were completely panicked and just waiting outside the ICU and praying for Padma’s recovery.    We had to argue with the security outside the ICU to gain access to the Doctors to know her situation (no courtesy from the security personnel, who just don’t understand the situation)

At about 4:30am in the morning, my friend gained access the Doctors in the ICU and came out with the low face to tell me that Padma’s condition is worsened.     Again I tried to reach Dr Rajkumar and the hospital says they don’t have his contact number (just can’t understand how they can behave like this).  Finally after some hue and cry Dr Rajkumar came on line to tell me that he is not God and don’t think his visit can do any thing different.   I cried, begged him to come over to give some ideas to his team to recover Padma.   He came over at around 6am and said they are trying everything possible, etc; but her end came quickly.  

The end came to our beloved Padma at 6:30am on 22nd Dec, throwing the entire family to rude shock and a life time sorrow.   Our “LIVES AFTER DEATH” of Padma has changed for ever.

I can now think of so many questions retrospectively;

1.        Why did the surgeon perform the surgery the very next day of consultancy, that too for a non-emergency one like this?   (Padma had just travelled many miles, she was not even out of jet lag.)   Was it for money? Was it for them to get one more sample for their post grads training?

2.        Did the Doctors made proper assessment on Padma’s fitness for surgery, frankly did they even had time to go through the reports, after the tests till 11pm on the previous night for next day 8am surgery (particularly when the reports were with us till 730am on the day of surgery).

3.        Patient communication and counselling.   Isn’t it important to communicate to patient and their relatives on the development of patient condition (fluid collection started from the next day of laparoscopic)

4.        Did the absence of Dr Rajkumar for three days post the first surgery is one of the reason for this disaster?  Were the other Doctors not able to diagnose or take a decision?  Were they waiting for Dr Rajkumar return?

5.        What is the real reason for duodenum perforation?   My wife never had any history of ulcer to the best of my knowledge.  Why did the hospital take so much of time to react (5 days after surgery) when such a crucial thing like perforation has happened.  

6.        Was there any issue in the initial laparoscopic procedure which has caused the perforation?

7.        Careless attitude by hospital staff? – my wife sex was recorded as “Male” initially and corrected after I told them.   The staff was not even apologetic for this, he rather asked me “why didn’t you inform”.   Can’t he make out with the name Padma.   Think of it, if he has changed the blood group from A+ to B+; that is it!!

8.        Will anyone with basic common sense ask for high risk signature in front of the patient?  I was asked to sign just minutes before surgery in front of my wife.

9.        Is the hospital money minded?:  They were demanding money on gun point almost.
a.        Prior to the first surgery the cashier said please give Rs.30000/- more for him to give clearance for surgery

b.        When my wife going for second surgery I was told by the cashier again, please give Rs.60000/- for clearance for surgery

c.        The hospital charged more than what was told for initial laparoscopic, without even communicating to me increase in charges

d.        The final “bill” was just on letter head, without mention of currency, invoice number, etc.   I had to insist on a proper invoice later.

e.        I was given to understand that they even made arguments on ambulance charges to send my wife dead body back home.!! (making money on the dead body also)

10.        Why the hospital did not made me to talk to my wife when she gained consciousness after the second surgery?   If not anything else, I could have held her hand.  Even a criminal gets an opportunity to communicate his/her last wishes.   Am I or my wife worse than?

11.         FALSE reports – After all these hospital sends me false reports (on Jan 11, 2008 – three weeks after my wife’s death) :

a.        They had mentioned she had LSCS (caesarean section) and large scar due to LSCS.   When my wife delivered both the babies normally, how does one record as caesarean and how there will be scar when there was no caesarean?

b.        The hernia was mentioned “incisional hernia” – when there was no incision on her body how the hernia is categorised as incisional?  It was actually ventral hernia.  Don’t think one can replace any term with any term just like that!

c.        Most importantly, the surgery was performed on 16th Dec 2007, the report said 17th dec 2007

12.        MISSING REPORTS –  From the hospital records Doctors notes were missing for 16th and 17th Dec.   The first report is available for 17th Dec at 8:36pm.  How come there are no Doctors’ notes for about 36 hours after the surgery?   Isn’t it fishy?  Did something went wrong on the first laparoscopic procedure?

Our entire family is still mourning and trying to reconcile the fact that our Padma is no more.    My 7 year old son is aware that is Mom is not there, does he understand?  My 1 year old daughter is too young to know what has happened.   What will her questions be in future?

My sincere advice to all is

a)       Do not get carried away by advertisement / TV shows / big buildings
b)       Please do not rush
c)       Do your own due diligence, particularly when things are not an emergency
d)       Try and understand the medical terms, do research prior
e)       Please ask questions, at every stage.
f)         Don’t say “I can spend anything”
g)       Know patient rights
I am still not convinced that Padma has died after a ‘simple’ laparoscopic surgery?    I am deeply upset of what has happened to Padma and for what is happening to us.  What I could have done (or not done) which would have prevented this.  What is that we can do to prevent this in future for others!!!

Please join me in making awareness to others.   While India is trying to woo many international Customers in the name of ‘medical tourism’; first let the authorities make regulation on the health care system and take care of Indian people first.    

Read others experience as well 
Our medical system must understand the differences between MEDICINE – TREATMENT and HEALTHCARE.   What we get most of the time is medicine for the symptom while we need healthcare.   


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kuselan- the subtext

August 28, 2008

The boss was back, and was sent back! This simple one liner is enough for the greedy money-mongers in kodambakkam to invest around 50 crores.

Sure, this would have been enough for great directors to visualize a schemata and a scenario in their minds, great script writers would certainly be able to weave a magical movement in it. But, the `brains’ that allegedly function and boast that they are on par with those whose creativity they unabashedly steal and plagiarize, have constantly run into trouble. They steal the story, some dialogues, some music and even some camera angles- what they fail to do is steal the great artistes who would have made the whole work good if not great. Since everything works, or so it is believed, around the artiste- it is a tough and daunting task indeed for the `creators’ of Chennai cinema houses. They always take the original story and style, put it onto the persona of the star, and start trimming and pulling and pushing till the whole thing goes out of shape. This blatant disrespect for art is called modification by some and adaptation by others. After the making of an ugly if not shameful product, they spent all their pent-up creative energy in a passionate promotion. Interviews in media, planned leaks, gossips are all well orchestrated for every such ridiculous movie. This `script’ ends in three possible ways-

1. everyone makes money, everyone is happy

2.some make money, some are happy

3.everyone loses money and nobody is happy.

In the case of Kuselan- the mega film that arrived to take on the mega(!) dasavatharam, the scenario has become different. No one is happy. Some have made money, but not the way and amount that they dreamt. Some have lost in a big way because their greedy gamble simply failed. The loss of money was startling and scary for the hitherto sycophants and they demand that their lottery ticket be refunded. The unsuspectingly tortured members of the measly audience, many of whom have the additional tag of a shamed fan, can never reclaim their ticket money. They have wasted their time and money- (parking fee, the canteen cost and the actual ticket value notwithstanding, they may also have to spend on anti-depressants).

What went wrong? Of late many things go wrong in tamil filmdom. Young kids who have been hanging around festivals have been able to find some producers. All those `arty’ films and all those `commercial’ films seen every day in work, have made these guys come up with fairly interesting, slick and economically sensible films. They have shown profits. They have drawn the audience to the theatres. The money-makers have sniffed blood. If a squirrel can yield so much meat, they want to catch the lion (even if the big one should have retired long ago). In the pursuit of their lion-hunt, they have tripped and been trampled by passing elephants.

What is interesting in the current scenario is that the erstwhile star-gazing theatre owners and distributors have rebelled. They cannot ( they claim in greed and shame) put up with losses anymore. They demand repayment! This cheap bad-losing behavior’s humour quotient apart, what is relevant in the drama is the fading image of the super star.

Is the public aghast? Are the streets streaming with sad and angry mobs? Is there a public outrage? Are couch-static socially concerned lap top owners typing out blogs? Nothing of significance has happened. Simply because what happened is not actually significant. It does not concern the average person’s survival and growth in a confused Indian socio-politico-economic milieu. It will not. But, the second page news that this trivia in life makes is superficially amazing. Media needs news. The visual medium is dependent on superstars for viewership. The print media is unfortunately also in the imaginary world where a star makes news every time there is a sneeze. No wonder no one was very critical of the boshed up butterfly effect.

The socio-psychological truth that emerges from the super flop and the subsequent rebellion against Rajnikant needs to be carefully observed and understood. Despite the prostrating media, despite the hype of a sincere and successful promotion, the product failed. It did not fail because the superstar was present only in a small portion of the film. That the star is doing a cameo role was something that the media have been blaring about from the time the film was decided ( It was not conceived! Conceptions are original). It failed because it was a bad film. In the past bad films were able to survive and even succeed just by the charismatic star’s presence. But then those were the times when fresh, young and good talent was not available in the arena. Now with newer directors and better films, it is but natural that bad films fail. They shall fail irrespective of the star value they may boast. They shall fail despite the best selling campaigns in the world.

Another angle to this story was seen in another blog ( in which the writer wonders on the validity of star based stories circulated by magazines. It shows how these magazines of tamilnadu, irrespective of their professed pseudo- integrity, have been drooling for news about the star, in the hope of luring readership. If the fragments of this stardom and its on-off descent into `human-dom’, was really so much the staple food for thought for the starved and yearning tamil minds, even a trash film by the star should have been a super-seller. This is not the first time this has happened. Earlier baba flopped. But the journalist jingbang could not resist the temptation to hail the fact that the superstar had graciously accepted the defeat- as though he had any other option. When his next film became a hit, crap about a horse falling dead is not equal to an elephant falling down and similar bizarre stuff mouthed by an angry loser were hailed as vignettes of quotable wisdom!

Kuselan has failed. This is a story of greed and illusion- both being the ideal ingredients of an inevitable failure. But the valiant and courageous band of journalists (as they call themselves) have not given up. They still hold his flag high. They wait for a miracle that would reinstate public belief in the star and revive their sales. A miracle is what the original story of kuselan described. The miracle was not how a poor man became rich by god’s design. The miracle described was the intensity and integrity of a real friendship. But then such sub-texts are beyond our learned people in the print industry. For them a star never fades, it is the eye that blinks. This again is a greed and an illusion, and so it shall be cursed.

Please do read the vinavu blog- which had induced me to write this piece.

August 25, 2008

இது புதிது
இப்படி எழுதுவது டைப் செய்வதை கெடுத்து விடுமோ என்று அஞ்சுகிறேன்

எப்ப்படியும் ஆசான் மூலமாக விரைவில் கற்றுக் கொள்ள முyaல்கிறேன்

arriving at blogspot!

August 14, 2008

i am in!
after many months and a few years of wondering if blogging was going to help anyone, including me, i have realized that it does indeed help- atleast me.
it is a simple way to wriggle out of ennui.
it is an elementary daily exercise to develop writing power of the brain.
it is a fairly pleasurable pastime; and right now, an acceptable form of talking to myself.
inshah Allah, Au revoir

*this is dedicated to my goddess

**the painting alongside was done in 1993, a poster design