Sunday, March 29, 2015

The summers story. A seven year old e-mail. Few words!

Was going through some past emails when I found this one sent to me on one fine day of October 2013. Upon receiving it, I was totally surprised! This was an old email that I had sent to my batch in the year 2008 and I didn't know that it was being passed on from one batch to another for multiple years!

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Daman A
Date: Mon, Oct 7, 2013 at 9:40 PM
Subject: Fwd: The Summers Story
To: Whole PG13

Hi PG13,

I hope this will encourage those "unLUCKY" fellows and you all will value this mail that have been passed to each and every batch from 2008.
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Rahul Pinnamaneni <>
Date: Thu, Oct 11, 2012 at 3:12 AM
Subject: The Summers Story
To: Whole PG12 <>

Hi PG12,

Hope you can relate with this much appreciated mail passed down the generations among the MDI fraternity.
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Rajat Gururaj <>
Date: Wed, Oct 12, 2011 at 11:18 PM
Subject: Fwd: The Summers Story
To: Whole PG11 <>

Hi PG11,
This was a mail sent by our seniors to us at the end of day 0 of summers.Wishing that this gives you some hope and strength to survive the rigmarole.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Preetam Biswas <>
Date: Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 11:24 PM
Subject: The Summers Story
To: Whole Pg10 <>
Cc:, Chaitanya Jha PG08 <>

Hi PG10,

probably u guys don't know him, see his mail below.. sent in the same day last year to us.. :)
for all 170 odd poor fellows.  :)

From: Chaitanya Jha []
Sent: 22 October 2009 21:37
To: 'GROUP-pgpm2009.'; 'GROUP-pghr2009.'
Subject: The summers story!

Dear all,

Looking at your summer placements taking place many of us are really happy for you.
But I can empathize for the poor souls who still haven't managed to get placed for the summers.
Last year I had got selected in IFMR,centre for micro finance after getting rejected in final interviews of 9 big companies but i guess that was truly the best thing that happened to me.

I had written the following mail to my batch on last day of slot zero last year.
Things are different this year but i still decided to share it with you all.


----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, October 03, 2008 12:57 AM
Subject: Re: Year On....Mood post Oscars or Filmfares or watever it is!

Hi friends,

D winning horse doesn't know y it is being whipped so hard...
So if you are finding yourself in a lot of pain right now,
then believe that God is your rider and wants you to win!!!!

Kudos to all those who got placed in slot 0.
But for all those who did not get placed a bigger congratulations because what you learn out of this is a lot more!!!!

We learn when we get to know that we are not shortlisted and we still
remain positive for the next shortlist..

We learn when we give final interviews and create positive impressions in
our mind that this is the company that will select me..then when rejection
comes we replace this company with the next one..

We learn when each day we get back to our rooms knowing that our neighbors
and classmates have got placed and we haven't but we still manage to meet
them with a smile..

We learn each time we get up and wear the same formal clothes and tell
ourself in the mirror that this is going to be my day today..and we do
this each coming day..

We learn when many of us know that we are actually slot 0 material but we
are still not finding a place in the final selection list...



So congratulations to all those who haven't got placed because you have
gained a lot more!!!!

We will all surely celebrate and celebrate it big when our whole batch
gets placed and not just our whole batch but even our seniors batch! We
wish them all the very best for their final placements!

Thanks and regards,

Chaitanya Jha

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Success of a Failed Start-up

My blog has typically seen little activity in recent couple of years. I haven't really talked much about the time when we had to close our start-up 'Discover Life'. I had signed out of the placement process at MDI and started a venture called 'Discover Life' in the area of critical life skills training in schools in a fun and engaging manner. The other co-founder was Amit and this wasn't the first time we were trying to burn our hands together :).We founded an NGO Sanskaari when we were just crossing our last teenage days and it became a 70 member organization in less than one year actively working on various social issues. We also experimented with a business idea around handmade chocolates for a while before getting started with "Discover Life". We continue to remain the best of friends and pick each other's brains on new ideas that can , as the famous Jobs quote said- 'create a dent in the universe'.

Some important questions to begin with:
  • Do I regret starting out so soon or on that particular idea: Not the slightest bit!
  • Do I cherish the time of life spent on Discover Life: More than anything else in the world :)
  • Will I start again: Ofcourse!
Shutting down a start-up is like a near death experience- and you don't want many of those. The idea/venture takes up your entire mind share, it becomes your identity, its all that you think, feel, breathe. It feels like a death of a close relative when you decide its time to shut down. Its a difficult phase to go through. We shut it down more due to my personal cash flow situation at that point of time (crappy MBA education loan!).

Anyhow, Now that I look back at it, I smile at all the success that we created:
  • It was 1.5 years of total fun :). The first centre, the first school, the first batch of students, the first cheque- its an insanely awesome feeling each time.
  • In a Nation where the entire education system has just rusted over the years (its plain crappy!), we brought life to an idea that really meant life education in true terms. Its affected numerous young minds who continue to remain inspired and infected by the thought process they developed during the Discover Life program. Students still connect with me and share their stories which make us proud, as somewhere the seed of their thinking pattern was planted during that point of time.
  • It was accepted in the best of institutions and the students still tell us that it was the most engaging and advanced thought process that they had experienced and even after 3 years they haven't seen anything like that happening in and around their schools
  • Its personally helped me initiate a social voluntary citizen initiative called 'skills for life' in which we are providing free life skills education to government school students. Last year, we affected 100 young minds and this year we are well on our way to affect a 1000 young lives.
Amit has continued to work on interesting ventures and is an able entrepreneur in the making. 

I love start-ups :) and I went back to educating myself by working in the start-up culture with ventures which were at the next level.  I have managed to play a somewhat important role by building new markets for a couple of education related ventures and the learning has just been immense. Now I view ideas differently, have had various quarters of sales experience and I feel more prepared to start again. 

Starting up has been a delight :)! Highly recommended to everyone! 
As Amit says- Keep Shaking The World!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

1000 Days of Good Health!

Yup. No medicines. No doctors. Its been 3 years now.

While I thank my stars for being kind to me, I can still draw some patterns from my journey towards peak fitness.  My work over last three years has got me continuously travelling, skipping meals and generally eating out a lot. Thus, there have been factors which have been beyond my control. I love getting wet in rains, and have been doing that extensively over the last three years but haven't caught flu even once.

Whats the secret?cliched as it may sound, it is indeed about thinking healthy and understanding your physical self really well. Reflecting back, I can think of few things that might have helped:
  • Sleep: I am generally an early riser, but I make sure that I get adequate sleep. I feel that one really needs to learn to switch off their mind, no matter how urgent a thought may be and catch a good night's sleep. 
  • Breathing: Someone mentioned that the biggest contribution of Baba Ramdev has been to simplify Yoga and I second that. I have made it a routine to go to terrace every morning and do some simple breathing exercises along with listening to music and feeding birds. The catch: Routine. I have managed to do this everyday for the last 5 years.
  • Early signs: Start listening to your body when you feel anxious, tired, stretched and act right away.
  • Purpose: This one is a general observation for life. A bigger purpose always draws out a bigger self.
  • Good things in life: Doing things that make you happy and give some peace to the restless soul.  Some such things for me are meeting friends and loved ones regularly, listening to great music, working on ideas, reading, interacting with kids in a classroom etc etc. Smiling is magical for your health :)
My wish for the world :)

ॐ सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः
सर्वे सन्तु निरामयाः ।
सर्वे भद्राणि पश्यन्तु
मा कश्चिद्दुःखभाग्भवेत् ।
ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ॥

Om, May All become Happy,
May All be Free from Illness.
May All See what is Auspicious,
May no one Suffer.
Om Peace, Peace, Peace.

Friday, December 28, 2012


My blog hasn't seen much action of late as most of my writings have come out in the form of FB notes. But two things prompted me to write something on my blog again 1) Going through my last blog post coming around the same time last year 2) a sudden itch to write.

So the world didn't end. I always wondered how I would live my life if the world was really to end few months from now. I have come to realize it wouldn't be much different from what it is right now. I have anyhow always lived taking everyday as a blessing and with an unshakable faith in a better future. When I imagine this world, I see great things building up; there are different individuals/architects workings around the world to build and design a great future. I have always felt at home being a part of this growing community of future architects.

2012 has been a special year again. When I look back, some things come to my mind:
  • Travel: It’s been a year when I along with my road trip junta have managed to scale snow peaks, befriend the roads and greet the ocean with open arms. Two awesome road trips:
o   9 days -1800 kms-from Delhi across Himachal: Pics from the trip
o   15 days- 4889 kms-Delhi to Goa covering 7 states: Pics from the trip

Travelling is awesome. Period! My thoughts about travel explained in one of my notes: Noises in my head .This year, we have stretched our previous travel/adventure limits to a new high. Next year Kashmir and Ladakh are on the cards by road.

  • The stiff climb: Crazy as it may sound, during one such road trip, we found ourselves randomly climbing a snow peak in Manali with the help of wooden sticks! After climbing half way, we felt the snow wasn't settled and gripping well enough. Return wasn't a feasible option, with our feet getting numb from cold, no human being in the line of sight as far as we could see. Out of breath, we kept moving on encouraging each other, taking turns to dig a path in the snow to settle our feet and move ahead. It was a scary time period as we recalled avalanche warnings from the stationed base security team. After what seemed like ages, we finally crossed over the entire mountain and saw an area which was open to public. Never before watching more human being felt any better and never before a warm cup of tea when we finally scaled down tasted any better

  • Skills for Life Initiative: Working on ideas that impact young lives has always driven me on to interesting experiments. Skills for Life initiative is a voluntary project that we are running since last 1 year as a pilot with 80 students of class 9th and 10th at an aided school SSMI in Delhi. The idea is to open up their thought process through classroom initiatives that are fun and beyond the domain of current education system. Slowly but gradually, it feels great to notice impact on these students. We plan to distribute the content and implementation model free of cost to more government and aided schools in future, but even if we end up changing 1 young life, it will make us happyJ. More about the initiative: About the initiativeChanges-Small but significantThe whole blog 

  • Who thought I would be winning college fests again: Well Almost! J I managed to contribute my little bit to a creation by a bright young team of budding movie makers called The Invictus. The documentary went on to win prizes at IIT Delhi and LSR, DU. What I am glad about is that there was no script for the documentary. What we showcased is what we truly felt.:


  • Running and Writing: Another half-marathon timed better this year. Expressions have always been special to me. Gladly they have kept flowing: My Notes
  • Random: Somehow I have learnt better to live each day whether it is grand or ordinary. I have been blessed with great friends in various friend circles with whom I have been struggling to stay in touch, but lately I feel that I am doing slightly better on that front as wellJ. I again feel blessed to be connected with myself and God.
With some special things building up, I am sure it is yet again going to be one great year ahead!

Friday, December 30, 2011

Things to do before turning 25

I do have a wish list/bucket list that I have been building, working upon since past 3 years now. It was always up there on my hostel wall. I have managed to tick off a good number of things and keep adding new ones to the list. More about that later.
This November I turned 25. To be honest, no quarter life crisis here. I have had good promising 25 years and the future canvas keeps growing bigger. Around April this year, my friend who was also turning 25 suggested an idea of working with a shorter timeline on a list of things to do before turning 25 and thus I created the following list:
  • A road trip (This was supposed to be a warm up for the bigger 'all India road trip' on my wish list)
  • Start my own youtube channel
  • Write more poetry (Later I linked this to the youtube channel idea)
  • Record an original song
  • Hot Air Balloon Ride (Inspired by reading about Richard Branson)
  • Learn Swimming
  • Run the half marathon (This was the first attempt)
So, I finally decided to evaluate this list and given below is how it went (thanks to facebook timeline i can revisit my thoughts during the course of these events and add them here) :
  • Road Trip: Took a week off and went on an awesomely fun road trip. The route was Delhi-Chandigarh-Mcleodganj-Palampur-Old Manali-Delhi. Some random observations from the Roadtrip:
    o Chilled bear is easier to find than Pepsi/Coke on Punjab Highways.
    o Google Maps go crazy on the hills.
    o 'The Real Dabang' on roads is Haryana Roadways. All vehicles give them the due respect and space on road.
    o The best road trip music is and will remain Lucky Ali :)
              Some more pics : Road Trip Pics
  • Hot Air Balloon Ride: Though I had planned it differently and evaluated options in Gurgaon but the opportunity presented itself much earlier. On our roadtrip, while travelling to Manali we saw hot air balloon rides being offered in a large open field area on our way. That very moment we kind of agreed, to do this before leaving Manali. Finally, being on the balloon an interesting thing is the sound of the burners which is a great roar as the balloon ascends and ofcourse the magnificent view of the surrounding hills. It was an interesting experience, one which presented itself without any planning :)!
  • Write more poetry: This was a wish to revive the poet in me. So I started writing again, strangely in a manner and pattern I had never written before and was able to write a surprising number of poems in this year. In fact my personal maximum number for any given year. And I am glad that some of my writings got encouraging feedback. 
          Link to the posts: Some of my poems
  • Youtube Channel: The idea of having my own youtube channel sounded random enough to be worked upon. The idea sounded easier than the work that was to follow. I decided to further use my writings and voice record them and create channel uploads. So I had to write more consistently (which becomes a tough task as forced creativity doesn't flow), then record my voice, do some bit of editing and then upload. I managed to get started on it lately and hope to upload more as I continue writing :)
         Link to my youtube channel: aazaadiyaan
  • Half Marathon: The target of running a marathon came from the idea that it will act as a measure of high fitness levels and well also as a tough challenge to keep one entertained. I did prepare with some random runs for around a month and a half before the marathon and running did become fun. But a marathon takes a lot out of you. All the more when you have never ever run even half the distance required at one go. But it gives you back. Way more :-)! In my first half marathon attempt I managed to go all the way (21 kms) in a time span of 2 Hours 53 Minutes. It was an awesome feeling to cross the finish line and a painful one while the body took good two days to recover from it :)!

  • Learn Swimming: This is still in process. More due to laziness and inconsistency :). I along with my friends have been trying to learn swimming without an instructor. For the past 2 summer seasons we have been going to a pool nearby but end up creating a lot of bhasad there. Though I sense we aren't too far from learning as well. This might happen in the coming summer :)
  • Record an original song: This was again a random thought that came to my mind. I haven't been able to work much on this. Though I am writing a lot of original stuff and lately managed to do some bit of singing in front of a crowd as well : Pankhon Ko (shabby recording in the office basement). Learning an instrument is also on my future list so an original recording might happen sometime in the future.
It has been a really interesting year which presented some more amazing experiences than the ones on that list such as being a part of a people's movement, a great mountain flight circling Mt Everest, first making an effort to locate and then meeting a role model/someone special after 11 years, the hills being very kind to me calling me again and again.

The above list and a bigger 'my wish list' for life gives me an interesting opportunity to keep having great new experiences and also giving my life a sense of direction, while enjoying each wish/to do item on the list. On my wish list there are bigger crazy things such as buying my own island, all India road trip, being the front story of the Entrepreneur Magazine and many more. 

These are times to dream.. and live some as well :)!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

14 Again!

Yesterday evening while walking alone on my way to Sairam Mandir, I had a strong feeling of Deja Vu. I felt that I was thinking in the same pattern that I used to think a decade ago. The introvert compulsive thinker that i was then, observing things, patterns closely. Thinking about the smallest of things and getting lost in thoughts, connections, drawing analogies from anything with everything.

This has been happening for days now. Yesterday evening while crossing the road I just stood there noticing the patterns being created by lights from the cars passing by with even the deadly Delhi buses looking artsy. Then looking at a father holding his son's hand and helping him cross the road while the little kid was busy happily jumping and playing on the road under the sense of security that the symbolic gesture of holding his hand by somebody that he could trust his life with provided him.

A couple of days earlier, while on the terrace early morning I was feeding pigeons that come there each morning. I have been doing this as a habit since a long time now. But that day looking at the pigeons I was lost in my thoughts drawing analogies with our own world. The way pigeons know that there would be somebody who would feed them every morning based on a relationship of trust. How our own expectations get based on a continuous basis on the various relationships of trusts that we have in life.

Some thoughts above and a countless number of similar other thoughts that are just occurring in the same patterns as at an earlier point in my life. Weird! :)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Celebrating a dream :)

And i begin this post with the song on my mind 'bavra mann dekhne chala ek sapna'...
Its been a dream.. it still is a dream.. just walking on an unknown path wherever your heart guides you.. It is the first anniversary of incorporation of Discover Life :) and I feel like a happy parent to see it grow.. while learning to walk, it fell and got up.. time and again.. but its here and walking on its feet now :) Maybe my role as a parent was tougher.. i fell each time with it and had to rise earlier to make it rise again... and i learnt to walk again.....

Some random thoughts:

  • The first step: What looked like the toughest (signing out of placements) at hindsight was the easiest part :)
  • The objective: To teach everything about life.. in schools.. which is not taught.. which is the most important.. which is the most needed at this stage..
  • The response: Overwhelming :) both students and educators.. anybody who has seen a Discover Life workshop in action has felt a connect..
  • The young minds: They learnt from us and we did more.. from them.. they teach us everyday.. the freshness is infectious :).. we feel young again..
  • The love: Its been a humbling experience to receive so much love and adulation not only from students but from everyone who heard about Discover Life..
  • The satisfaction: The joy, the cheer, the applause, the tears, the change... seen it all in a lot of young lives.. its been a deeply satisfying experience..
  • The Co-Founder: I and Amit have created things before Discover Life together.. The journeys continues with Discover Life.. He is the backbone of the system, the perfect 'go-to' guy.. A street smart entrepreneur.. sharp and adaptive.. more than work, creating things together has always been great fun :)
  • The business side: 'Most startups fail within the first two years'.. we have survived one.. and done well :).. we are here to stay and grow.. BIG TIME :)
  • The journey ahead: Its gonna be crazy.. some things getting steady.. some great things building up in the background.. the ride has just begun :)
  • The hope: Discover Life creating impact on millions of young lives..
A heartfelt thank you to everybody who has wished, prayed, applauded, criticized, been there for Discover Life.

Chaitanya Jha
Discover Life

Some dreams are here to stay........ :)

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Ek khel sa tha woh bachpan ka..

Ek khel sa tha woh bachpan ka
Jab chupa karte the apne kahin
Tab kisi baat ki fiqr kahan thi
Kuch sochne ka waqt nahi

Umar badhi aur khel naye
Duniya se kiye mel naye
Mel reh gaya e-mail tak
Kabhi mahol nahi kabhi waqt nahi

Ek khel sa tha who bachpan ka
Jab chupa karte the apne kahin

Aaj bhi ek khel hai
Khel hai woh bachpan sa
Par chupe hue hain raaz kayi
Muddaton tak humne khoja
Waqt ki ret phisalti rahi

Apne jo mil jaate the khel mein
Woh khel rahe hain khel kayi
Har khel ek paheli hai
Har paheli ke jawab kayi

Ek khel sa tha who bachpan ka
Jab chupa karte the apne kahin

Aao phir jee lein us khel ko
Woh bachpan ke us mel ko
Jab khelna jeewan tha 
Aur jeewan ek khel nahi

Phir banayein woh kahaniyan
Woh bachpan ki hairaniyan
Apne phir se dhoondein bhi
Baarish ki woh boondein si

Bachpan ki woh baatein
Phir samente woh yaadein
Jab khelna jeewan tha 
Aur jeewan ek khel nahi

Ek khel sa tha woh bachpan ka
Jab chupa karte the apne kahin

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

My first year as an Entrepreneur :)

Technically, its not the first year as i have been involved in entrepreneurial projects for over 3 years now. Also there are still 3 months before 'Discover Life' completes its first year.
But yes, this year i have been working full time post completing my MBA as an Entrepreneur. It has been one awesome ride all along. Reflecting back at some of my experiences this year i would like to share some insights particularly for all the young budding entrepreneurs who undergo our entrepreneurship program in schools and well for anyone who reads this blog post :)

Some random thoughts..
  • The good and the bad : Everyday at some point of time as an entrepreneur there comes a feeling 'You own the world' and almost everyday there are moments when you feel like 'Leave everything and run away'. Thats the crazy life, the life of an entrepreneur :)
  • The journey: It is not going to be easy.Your worst nightmares will come true. Learn to move on and get up every time you fall.
  • Big bad world: There is nothing called big bad world of business. Most grey areas are due to people. You find dark shaded in people everywhere whether it be job or business. 
  • Does an MBA help? : Indian education system or for that matter any other education system in the traditional form does not prepare people to become entrepreneurs. But yes awareness and knowledge through education helps an entrepreneurial mind.
  • The biggest challenge in early days: Cash :)
  • How to overcome it: Patience, Persistence and Belief. Biggest of all- 'Jugaad'.
  • Believe. You can change the world.
  • Become humble when you become Great. Till then love what you do and take pride in whatever you do. 'Jo khud se ishq nahi kar sakta, woh kisi aur se kya ishq karega'.
  • The best day to start is today. Age old belief works. Verified.
  • Be crazy. It helps :)
  • Have plans and work hard. Harder than you would in a full time job. Smart work sounds cool but for all great things in life you need to sweat it out.
  • Failure is cool. Believe in this or else as an entrepreneur you would go nuts.
  • Patience and persistence are hell important and what is more important is knowing when to use which of the two.
  • It is not rocket science. You figure out once in water.
  • Entrepreneurs don't die hungry.

Cheers to one rocking year :) Wishing everyone a great year ahead :)

Monday, October 25, 2010

The 4:00am drive! :)

This post is a sequel to the post i had written in a very similar mood 1.5 years back while i was driving at 3:30am coming back to campus after my first year MBA:

Its something about the early morning drives that refreshes your mind, makes your thoughts deep and reflective. Like the earlier 3:30 am drive in my previous post, even today i was driving to drop somebody. I had to drop Amit, my friend and co-founder of Discover Life to a bus stand so that he could catch a bus for meetings in schools in Chandigarh scheduled later in the day.

Since the last 3:30 am drive things have changed. I have passed out of MDI Gurgaon and now pursuing my entrepreneurial aspirations. The second year was all the more eventful at MDI :). Will miss those days always. But the amazing thing is that some of my best friends for life are working in gurgaon itself and i can anytime go and re-live our memories :)

Also in my earlier post i had talked about not joining a corporate. I have been lucky enough and crazy enough to actually do that after 1.5 years :) Life has been an exciting ride. Working on something new everyday, the highs and lows, adventures and lots of misadventures :). But enjoying these moments to the full. Staying at home, eating ghar ka khana and playing badminton with friends daily. Priceless! :)

And as i drive back home singing out loud with the car radio 'chal chalein apne ghar', I feel liberated :)

Monday, October 18, 2010

No food in belly..but dreams in their eyes..

Amongst all the shame, chaos, fear and hatred for things happening around, the young sporting talent from India has won hearts worldwide. With their fairytale stories, these young Indians represent the new India to the world. No food, education, training and environment to win, they still managed to shine with dreams in their eyes, putting blood and sweat in their efforts, having a crazy level of belief in themselves, breaking the chains around them to stamp their presence on the world.

This is the young India. Fearless in its approach, creating their own path moving beyond the conventional, taking risks, full of pride, taking on the world. They live dreams. In the form of young athletes, students, entrepreneurs, professionals we have a breed of young heroes ready to take the nation forward.

The red carpet is laid and the young restless dreamy eyed Indians are ready to walk and dance on the world stage like never seen before.

Jai Hind

Saturday, October 9, 2010

'HINDI' Hai Hum Watan Hai Hindustan Hamara

Did revolutionary poet, Iqbal, use 'Hindi' in context of a language, we would never know. But we know one thing for sure, that the beautiful poem 'Saare Jahan Se Accha Hindustan Hamara' talks about the importance of our cultural heritage, things that are our own, being proud of our identity and the amazing things about our nation which truly give us the feeling of national pride.

One such thing is our language 'Hindi'. All languages are great. I wish I could learn more of them and still plan to do so sometime. But being born and brought up in Delhi, Hindi was a language in which I grew up and have my memories itched(had this random conversation with a friend about thoughts and memories running in our minds in a certain language).

'Jungle jungle baat chali hai' was a kids anthem. The hindi comics of nagraj and bankelaal were my most eagerly awaited reads :D. I did read a lot of English books too, but Hindi as a language has its own charm. The poems I used to read in 'Hindi' such as 'Satpura ke ghane jungle, neend mein doobe hue se, undhte anmane jungle' at school time still echo in my mind and those simple yet true to life stories of Premchand made what my childhood imagination was.

These days we observe children at very young age talking to their parents in English and parents feel proud to showcase their kids' English verbal skills. It is nice to see kids learn so much at such young age but then it feels sad to see them lose connect with certain things that are essential to building the national pride in their hearts and minds. Somewhere we are weakening the very foundation of building up our nation.

Now its difficult to imagine losing connect with one's roots through non usage of a particular language. I can give my own example where due to being born and brought up in Delhi, I never really considered learning 'Maithili' which is my native language during my childhood. Now I regret not knowing the beautiful language and its nuances which also gives me a great sense of disconnect with the entire culture in which my ancestors were brought up.

I hope this disconnect does not happen with our nation and its young people on the basis of treating 'Hindi' as a secondary or an obsolete language.

Our hopes rest on a poetic line again by Muhammad Iqbal:

Jai Hind

Friday, October 1, 2010

10 reasons why working from home rocks :) A Startup Insight :)

For many startups the first office is that extra room/basement in the house where the crazy entrepreneurial ideas take shape. Let me give you my 10 reasons why working from home truly rocks :)
  • Unlimited supply of tea and coffee: Custom made from mom's kitchen at any time of the day to lift your spirits :)
  • Take a bath at any time of day: Don't have to wake up early morning and get ready for work. Taking bath at 1:00pm works great
  • Work attire: Tshirts and Pyjamas rock
  • Freedom of sleep: Take a nap at any time of the day and well you can sleep all day as well
  • Music: Be it random FM music, Ghazals, Rock or the regular Bollywood music. You are allowed to play all day at the volume levels you like
  • Work Life balance : You don't have parents complaining that you don't spend time at home. Although sometimes they do wish you stay out for peace ;)
  • Travel: Having worked for one year in Gurgaon and travelling 4 hours everyday from home to work, not travelling to office is a luxury. Though drives are still there but just for fun :)
  • Home cooked food: My friends staying away from home would really support me on this point. Home cooked food totally rocks
  • Watch all you want: Be it movies or TV Series, its all available on the TV next room or on your laptop or better still go to the movie hall in the middle of the day any time on the week to catch the latest flick
  • MASTI: With entrepreneurial friends around, we gang up any time, create a lot of bhasad, play badminton, drive around, roam around in markets and have awesome masti :)
PS: Entrepreneurship involves crazy levels of hard work, but well for all this fun, its worth it :)

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Are we dead within, I hope we are not..

These are few lines i wrote to address the audience beginning the Social Week at MDI last year:

Our bodies look alive,
But are we dead within, i hope we are not..
Murders and killings don't affect us but cough and cold freaks us out,
Are we dead within, i hope we are not..
Mother earth is crying but we aren't listening,
Are we dead within, i hope we are not..
The future if this country in form of tiny hands go unnoticed begging on red lights,
Are we dead within, i hope we are not..
Faith & Religion the messengers of love have become thirsty for blood,
Are we dead within, i hope we are not..
People are dying because of obesity and people are dying because of hunger,
Are we dead within, i hope we are not..
Freedom for us is to break laws and create chaos,
Are we dead within, i hope we are not..
We all know of things affecting us but wait for others to start the action,
Are we dead within, i hope we are not..
The youth of this nation, this gathering gives me hope that we aren't dead within,
And i truly hope we are not..

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Starting Early!

I still remember as a 8 year old kid, I used to go along with my Dadaji to market to shop for bread and vegetables. After a couple of years, my Dadaji gave me an incentive of earning Rs.2/- daily if I bought the stuff independently going to the market each evening. I was proud to earn my Rs.2/- daily and used to keep them in a small piggy bank. This was my first lesson in life. Lesson in taking initiative, working independently, earning by effort and most importantly savings and money management.

There were frequent power cuts in those days and during summers it used to get really hot sitting in candle light inside my home. After few days of saving money, one evening when there was a power cut, I took money out of my piggy bank and bought ice creams for my family. Everyone was smiling :). I was proud. This was my first lesson in creating value. The value was happiness :)

Over a period of time, I have developed money management skills and applied them in the organizations that I created along with my partners. When I look back, those Rs.2/- lessons are one of the biggest lessons I have learned in life.

Discover Life's EDEP(Entrepreneurship Development Program) is an initiative at Starting Early.
The Entrepreneurs of tomorrow are in schools today :)

- Chaitanya Jha