It’s very difficult to capture power in West Bengal…

bridge-167041_960_720We had to have the violent and long-running Naxalism movement that disrupted the State forever, the political uncertainty of 1967-72, which saw many aaya ram gaya ram Chief Ministers and the sheer tyranny of Congress Chief Minister SS Ray (that shut the party out of the State forever) before the CPM could come to power.
Mamata Banerjee found herself as the Chief Opposition after the 1996, 2001 and 2006 Assembly elections (hence her stints at the Centre to bide her time) before she could claim the throne in 2011.
The BJP has just now grabbed the mantle of Chief Opposition of West Bengal in 2021.
The other side of the coin: It’s very difficult to lose power in Bengal too…
From 1947-77, 30 years, the Congress was either the Ruler or Chief Disruptor. It was a tragedy of errors that led to their exit.
The CPM ruled from 1977-2011, a record 34 years.
And even now Mamata has got three straight terms and will see herself as a favourite for 2026 too.

Covid Musings

Monalisa, Mona Lisa, Mask, PaintingProbable matrimonial ad during Covid…
Lifelong Covid negative girl seeks lifelong Covid negative boy. Boy should believe in masks and vaccines. He should have special lockdown skills like cooking, washing dishes and housekeeping. Separate TVs a must in the house for OTT.

How we will count the years from now on…
____-2018: BC (Before Covid)
2019: Year 0
2020: Year 1
2021: Year 2

Is this the New Normal…
Annual scares.
Annual waves.
Annual lockdowns.
Annual vaccinations.
Annual confusion.

Written more than a 100 years back, EM Forster’s short story “The Machine Stops” (1909) talks of an “omnipotent global machine” which takes care of all of mankind’s “bodily and spiritual needs” (The Internet? AI?). People largely message each other all the time. Communication is perfect and transportation nears zero. Most of the human population socially distance themselves and live permanently below the ground in a standardized room in the short story.
Could we be heading to something like that?
Even science fiction writer Isaac Asimov, who got many predictions right, has his Robotic Trilogy showing humankind escaping underground away from the open air of Earth.

2020 goals…
To be alive, healthy and working by the end of the year.
2021 goals…
same as above.

Why Indian cricketers aren’t poor travellers and ace foreign tours

plane-841441_960_720England is yet to win a major multi-nation ODI tournament outside England. South Africa and New Zealand have not won any World Cup anywhere. Forget a Test series—Sri Lanka has never even won a single Test in India. Pakistan won their first Test series in West Indies quite late in 2017 as against India way back in 1971.

The truth is that when you combine all three formats of the game, then only Australia and India are the best travellers. Only these two teams have won maximum multi-nation tournaments in maximum countries. It’s a myth that Indians are poor travellers in international cricket overall.

We have won in…

united-kingdom-1043062_1280England.
1 ODI World Cup—1983.
1 ICC Champions Trophy—2013.
3 Test series—1971, 1986, 2007.
1 ODI Tri-series—2002.
3 ODI series—1986, 1990, 2014
1 T20 series—2018.
Total = 10.

sydney-3680862_960_720Australia.
1 Mini World Cup—Benson & Hedges World Series 1985.
2 Test series—2019, 2021.
1 ODI Tri-series—2008.
1 ODI series—2019.
2 T20 series—2016 (Australia’s only whitewash in any format on home soil ever since 1877), 2020.
Total = 7.
(India retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in Aus by tying the Test series in 2004)

South Africa.
1 T20 World Cup—2007.
1 ODI series—2018.
1 T20 series—2018.
Total = 3.

Lanka-2099225_1280Sri Lanka.
1 ICC Champions Trophy—2002.
1 Asia Cup—2010.
3 Test series—1993, 2015, 2017.
3 ODI Tri-series—1998, 2009, 2018.
4 ODI series—2008, 2009, 2012, 2017.
Total = 12.

West Indies.
5 Test series—1971, 2006, 2011, 2016, 2019.
1 ODI Tri-series—2013.
5 ODI series—2002, 2009, 2011, 2017, 2019.
1 T20 series—2019.
Total = 12.

pakistan-641446_960_720Pakistan.
1 Test series—2004.
2 ODI series—2004, 2006.
Total = 3.

New Zealand.
2 Test series—1968, 2009.
2 ODI series—2009, 2019.
1 T20 series—2020.
Total = 5.

dubai-1113262_960_720UAE.
7 multi-nation tournaments—1984, 1985, 1988, 1995, 1998, 1998, 2018.

Bangladesh.
2 Asia Cups—1988, 2016.
4 Test series—2000, 2004, 2007, 2010.
1 ODI Tri-series—1998.
3 ODI series—2004, 2007, 2014.
Total = 10.

Canada.
2 ODI series—1997 (Pak), 1999 (WI).

clover-445255_960_720Ireland.
1 ODI series—2007 (SA).
1 T20 series—2018 (Ire).
Total = 2.

Zimbabwe.
1 Test series—2005
4 ODI series—1998, 2013, 2015, 2016.
2 T20 series—2010, 2016.
Total = 6.

Grand Total = 79, that includes 5 World Cups/mini WCs, second only to Australia’s 6 away such wins.

India has won at least one 5-nation plus tournament in Australia, South Africa, England, Sri Lanka, UAE, Bangladesh and India.

(This blog was first published on October 1, 2018. This is an updated version of the same)

A Twitter account hacked, hijacked, renamed repeatedly and gone

I had been on My Twitter handle @sunilrajguru since 2009 and have Tweeted more than 15K Tweets, with more than 5K followers, but all that has just vanished.

I had given my email ID and mobile number as a safeguard but don’t remember whether I did opt for a two factor authentication.

It all started when I got a mail saying someone tried to change my password…

Suspicious Yahoo Twitter

So I went to change my password, but I found I couldn’t even login to Twitter

Then I got this message saying my email ID had already been changed…

Address change

So now I couldn’t use my old email ID or mobile No. to change any details or change PW, they couldn’t be found.

I complained to Twitter Support Hacked Account, got a reply and further replied with the extra details.

Meanwhile, my handle vanished.

Account doesnt exist

Then my followers reported following an account which they never followed. When they clicked the link to my profile, their mobile cache showed my old account which got immediately refreshed to this…

Hacked Account Renamed

Same joining date. Same followers. A lot of my followers reported getting this when they clicked my profile.

So it appears my account was Hacked, Hijacked & Renamed.

Then I got an email from Twitter saying that they couldn’t locate my account or other details…

Twitter can't find

And this person, thanks to his or her hacking skills, gets 5K followers for free.

And I lose my 15K Tweets!

Identity Theft is one thing, this is a taking over of someone’s identity and renaming it to their own!

All in all a neat trick!!!

Post Script…

The hacker keeps changing the name of the handle multiple times, so I can’t keep track.

For Twitter Support it should show as one continuous account from 2009-20, but apparently it doesn’t, so nothing much can be done by the user!

Meanwhile I am off Twitter, but opened another account in my name in case I ever decide to get active again and no-one else takes my username.

Also the highest ReTweets I got for a single Tweet was in excess of 3000. That has been preserved thanks to good ole Wayback Machine.

3200 Retweets

Also one from 2010, the earliest it captured

Twitter 2010

Harrowing tale from another tech journo…

The day my Twitter account was hacked and left to rot out in the sun

Only Deep Tech can keep us on track for our $5 trillion goal

architecture-768432_960_720The Old Economy can take us only so far. We have to accelerate with the New Economy. Our only way forward is to embed a layer of technology on top of the Old Economy. Specifically, Deep Tech, coupled with a bold corporate India strong on manufacturing. The three pillars on which India should concentrate on are pushing Deep Tech, Big Tech Diversification-Global Tie-ups and Hardware-Electronics.

Read Part 1

Focus on 3As and 1C for deep tech push: Deep Tech is the future and the startups that come out of that will rule tomorrow. The Indian Startup Ecosystem is the 3rd largest in the world, but we can aim for the top spot. 3As and 1C are Automation, Augmented, Access & Cloud.

Read Part 2

Big tech diversification and global tie-ups: It all started with Jio. If it’s all about global mergers, acquisitions, investments and tie-ups, then Jio is showing the way. First came a host of investors, more than a dozen.

Read Part 3

Hardware and electronics to form the backbone of Deep Tech ecosystem: The forgotten pillar which is equally important to power the IT industry and has shown to be even more important especially in light of the global supply chain disruption caused by the Covid-19 crisis.

Read Part 4

How Deep Tech can help fast track development in India: the 2020s could well be the Decade of India. But for that, the government, tech industry, Corporate India and SMBs will have to come together and get deep into technology.

Read Part 5

When Jeff Bezos became a Neelpati!

diamond-1186139_960_720Growing up in India in the 1980s, Lakhpati was such a big thing (Rs 100,000).

After the Liberalization of 1991, that became common and Crorepati became a thing (Rs 100 lakhs).

Today so many flats (forget bungalows) in every major city are worth a crore each. The Indian middle class is swarming with Crorepatis.

One term that never caught on was Arabpati (Rs 100 crores).

There are so many Arabpatis in India too.

How about Kharabpati? (Rs 100 Arabs or Rs 10,000 crores).

In the current rate of exchange, that’s roughly US$1.33 billion.

So now the terms US$ Billionaire and INR Kharabpati are almost comparable and we could well start using the latter.

India has roughly 100+ Kharabpatis.

Did you know that 100 Kharabs = 1 Neel?

So if someone is worth Rs 10 lakh crore, then he would be a Neelpati.

Is there anyone who is a Neelpati and worth that much?

Going by the above calculations, US$133 billion is enough to be a Neelpati. India’s richest man Mukesh Ambani is heading towards half a Neel.

If it’s anyone who’s already there then it has to be Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, the richest man in the world who is worth (depending on the day you are looking) in excess of US$180 billion.

So a Neelpati is worth a 100 Kharabpatis or 10,000 crorepatis, or 1 million Lakhpatis!

How times have changed!