Who am I?
- Pranay Gupta
- I am not religious, but I don't mind calling myself spiritual. Religion, I believe, has, over the millennia, been used as a prop to perpetrate a lot of human suffering. Faith is what matters. I don't believe in the definition of God as a creator. According to me, my God resides within me. Some call it conscience, some call it the sub-conscious, some call it the soul. I don't mind calling it God. So by definition I am not an atheist or an agnostic, but by essence, I may as well be. My God does not reside in a temple, church, mosque or gurudwara. It is right here, within me.
Wednesday, August 9, 2017
Friday, June 9, 2017
Travel woes don’t seem to leave me alone. After all the mess with the UK visa getting denied to me because of a “damaged passport” followed by a passport re-application struggle at multiple stages, where I underwent all adventures possible while dealing with Indian bureaucracy like a rude and haughty passport officer who called my application a “ghanta” loudly enough for the 50 people crowded around in the office without a care in the world, and being asked to come back thrice for the Passport re-issue application, to a background verification police officer who asked for a bribe in a subtle manner, the worse thing being that I fail to notice the subtlety, followed by a delay in receiving the re-applied UK visa till the very last afternoon of the day I was to fly out. And at one point you think, what else can happen? I’m at my lowest point and nothing can be worse than this.
Wednesday, May 31, 2017
|The girl rollicking around the park with her parents|
|Children two my right try to scare away this Oyestercatch|
|The group of girls, far away from worldly|
troubles, in their own cocoon called childhood
|The girl who sits peacefully underneath the tree, |
absorbed in her book
Sunday, May 28, 2017
|A group of sheep, fenced within a garden, bleating profusely|
while running around excitedly
This is an excerpt from a longer piece I wrote in my journal:
After the beer at the bar, I went out. I had hesitated going out earlier because rain seemed imminent, but when this imminence seemed to be dissolving into permanence, my confidence grew. The foreboding dark grey did not seem as gloomy once I stepped out. I had spent some time on Google maps figuring out the area and trying to locate some good places to eat around, so I chose my direction and started walking. When I ended the walk, an hour and a half later, the weather was still exactly the same, I felt extremely alive, I had a take-away pack of Chicken Chowmein with me and it was nearing 8 pm, but still bright and beautiful.
|The small-town streets and houses of Batley, a small town |
near Cleckheaton, about 20 mins away from Leeds
|The small pond upon which I stumbled where I found an old man |
|The old church which was right across the cemetery, silent |
|The graveyard which opened up suddenly in front of me while|
walking across a grassy meadow
Friday, January 6, 2017
|St. Edward's School, Shimla|
|Morning Assembly at St. Edward's School|
|A view of the school premises|
Sunday, June 19, 2016
Today I watched Udta Punjab. I found it to be a bold treatise on the drug mayhem (I would not euphemise it by calling it “scene”) being played out in the plains of Punjab. It has spread its tentacles so deep into the society that almost everyone has a cousin or a nephew (if not a son or a sibling) who has a pathological addiction to drugs, causing widespread familial disruption and economic ruin. The movie thrilled but was not a thriller, it definitely talked about the “high” but did so without glorifying it, and it made me laugh out loud on countless occasions, but was definitely not a comedy. I would describe it as an accurate portrayal of the state of affairs, the convergence of the venal and the immoral that stalks the youth today and has already been imbibed by the society.
It portrays how even a silent spectator is indirectly responsible for the flagrant corruption of life. It unapologetically shows a lead actress stabbing a man on the face repeatedly till the life passed out of him, and you feel a strange tingling of elation. It depicts an addicted boy of not more than 13 overdosing himself, lying in his own vomit, and his elder brother believing that it must be his friends who forced him this one time, “humara Balli to acha ladka hai”. It is unapologetic about a lead actress getting raped repeatedly, and the other being stabbed to death by a junkie in a fit of desperation. It is unapologetic about a lead actor becoming a part of the system by accepting a regular bribe for turning a blind eye towards drugs being transported, unknowingly for the very drug which destroys his own brother’s life, and the other actor basking in his own pool of vanity, arrogance and puke. It is as unapologetic as real life can be, and therein lies the impact. Watch this movie even if you've read this review despite a spoiler alert, as the strength of this piece of art is not in its storyline but in its direction, dialogues and acting. Give the movie makers an honest day's earning and watch it in the theatres rather than the leaked print. If you've ever watched something for its in-your-face brutal honesty, this movie is for you.