Is CWG preparation really so bad?

The logo of 2010 Commonwealth Games
Image via Wikipedia

Contributed by Pradeep Mittal

It is almost 3 months now a lot is being written about India‘s unpreparedness on the 2010 Commonwealth Games (CWG) venue preparation. It makes me wonder if things are really so bad on ground or is it that too much is being demanded?

India caters to 1.1bn+ people which is 1/6th population of earth but without having access to 1/6th of resources of earth. This inequality does give rise to income disparity and purchasing power disparity which eventually gives rise to cumulative way of living.

Hospitality sector in India is one of the best but still people prefer to go out for vacation; India has all weather conditions and all types of terrain to enjoy but still tourists are few? Does it mean India is bad…I don’t think so! Today westerners come to India looking for eternal peace and Indians are going across the globe looking for materialistic gains.

CWG games would be done and eventually nobody would even remember what was done in opening ceremony or how many people had to toil to make them happen. Nonetheless corruption is cancer and it needs to be uprooted in every society of world!


Why do Jeffrey Archer’s soaps impress people?

For a long part of my life – about 10 years – Kane and Abel by Jeffrey Archer was my favorite novel. Then, I read several other books by Jeffrey Archer. He used to, and I believe even now does, have a strong fan following in India; I never understood how that happened.

Recently, I got hooked on to audiobooks. I have listened to books, such as The Millenium Trilogy, Freakonomics, Harry Potters, and The Book Thief. Out of nowhere, I decided to revisit Jeffrey Archer after a long time. I think the last book of his that I read was A Matter of Honour about 5 years back.

Now, I am listening to A Prisoner of Birth.

And I realize I still feel the same way about this author.

He has a unique skill in writing; I feel it is the ability of making a complicated plot very easy to follow. It was amazing how he converts a soap opera – romance, suspense, treachery, family feuds – into a mesmerizing read. You don’t feel like you need to go back and forth. you don’t need to remember anything odd that might have happened in the past. The mystery follows. The story etches itself in the mind of the reader It is almost like the current chapter gives rise to the next one and so on.

The Book Thief

I have had the fortune of reading some good books and these include famous ones, such as LOTR, Harry Potters, the Millenium Trilogy. Those were great stories told in a captivating manner. But, it was the stories that kept me engaged. I continue to be mesmerized by To Kill a Mockingbird for the strong story and the simplicity of the writing!

A couple of months ago, I decided to send a book as a gift to a young girl in India. This time, however, I decided to take a chance, trust my ability to interpret web reviews, and send a book that I have not read previously. Among the many books reviewed on the web, two caught my attention:

  1. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  2. Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Journey to Change the World…One Child At A Time – Young Reader’s Edition by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin

I sent her “Three Cups of Tea…” and I have not yet read it.

But, recently, I managed to read and listen (audio CD), The Book Thief myself. The fictional story is about a young girl growing in Nazi Germany, meeting many people, and learning a few things about life as she is stealing books to read.

No other book has managed to fascinate me this much in recent memory.

Among many things, this is a thought-provoking book: I think it is about reading; It is about the power of words and the realization of what can be achieved through them.

“”Blood leaked from her nose and licked at her lips. Her eyes had blackened. Cuts had opened up and a series of wounds were rising to the surface of her skin. All from words. From Liesel’s words.”

I was immediately hooked on by the spectacular writing style, an engaging play of words, and the metaphoric poetic language. The formatting is very different – I have never read a book formatted this way. It has one line paragraphs, incorrect (?) sentences –  “The sound of an explosion.”, one page chapters – all designed very carefully and thoughtfully. The cover page with the dominoes is brilliant!

I wished the book never ended.

And it sure makes an enjoyable read if the narrator is Death and he says things such as the following:

  • “It kills me sometimes, how people die.”
  • On War: “A small but noteworthy note. I’ve seen so many young men over the years who think they’re running at other young men. They are not. They are running at me.”