The Migrating Bees—A Documentary on migration workers in Bangalore, India

The above video content is copyrighted to Himadri Ghosh. Unauthorized distribution or copying is strictly prohibited.

 

Behind this glitz of the IT capital of India(Bangalore), with its skyline filled with its array of gigantic buildings lays humble stories of thousands who build this city coming from all over of the country. The Migrating Bees tries to tell their stories of disparity and exclusion in progress and prosperity.

Raju and Tuna tell their stories of extended work hours, limited wages and the problems they face in this city.More to that is their agonies of alienation, shifting from blue tents to another in a big city away from their families with a meagre pay gives them a feel of delusion.

The hands that build and mend the city are being neglected as the city continues to moves on.

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A satirical cartoonist might have to ‘think twice to survive’

Not just Charlie Hebdo, any organization or individual could become martyrs of ‘terror attacks’. Radicals who guard their religion with Kalashnikov’s masterpiece attacked Hebdo’s office killing one of the top journalists working there along with 11 other souls.

Freedom of speech is still a distant reality, there are gunmen roaming freely with rifles, ready to spray bullets on anyone who dare raise a finger against religion. In 1989, a bounty was declared by Ayatollah Khomeini, the spiritual leader of Iran on Salman Rushdie, a renowned writer from UK.

The ‘spiritual leader’ said that Rushdie’s book, ‘The Satanic Verses’ was ‘blasphemous towards Islam and that he is sentenced to death’ in terms of fatwa. Rushdie was then forced to live under police protection for over seven years; the UK later cut diplomatic ties with Iran over the controversy.

The Muslim Shariah law has harsh punishments such as lashing and death for apostasy and blasphemy. ‘Respect’ can be given to legends and heroes whose works or words have created some impact in the society. ‘Respect’ is given to inspirational or motivational forces—not to forces that choose to control with a bullet.

The story of Riaf Badawai, a Saudi national who called for free speech in the land of the monarchs is shocking as he was sentenced to 10 years in prison along with 1,000 lashes. He received his first fifty lashes on a Friday in public. And he will receive 50 lashes every Friday until the thousandth whip.

Scholars claim that Islam is a religion of peace, but somewhere down the line the ‘peace’ was forgotten and Muslim scholars in the medieval times spread narrow-minded  propaganda after twisting the actual words from the Quran. According to Mustafa Akyol, a contributing op-ed writer for The New York Times, wrote that the Quran never banned practicing fine art, it was the scholars who interpreted it, according to the norms of their times.

Again, ‘respect’ cannot be given to morals that sought to kill torture and behead. Religious sentiments were hurt when Hebdo published the satirical cartoon depicting a woman lifting up her Burqaa revealing her innerwear with an inscription which reads: “Unemployed pension for purchase.”

Some people will take the cartoon as offensive, but nothing justifies the terror attacks on Hebdo’s office in Paris. There are other ways to show condemnation–for example, when the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published 12 editorial cartoons in 2005 depicted prophet Muhammad with the headline, ‘Muhammeds ansig’, which means ‘The face of Muhammad;’ the whole of Middle-East boycotted Danish products.

The boycott costed, Denmark—the biggest exporter to the Middle East, $1.6 million per day in the initial weeks of the boycott.

A satirical cartoonist might have to think twice, and this curbs ‘freedom of speech’, this very right is a governing force for a free media.

My Confessions (part. 9)

The Chennai Mail races through the tracks, I get down from my ‘Honda Activa’ to gaze the starry skies and the train compartments rushing on the tracks. It’s an ‘almost psychedelic’ experience, gazing at the compartments while the moonlight fills the sky. The LED lights’ trail creates a little illusion of a straight endless yellow line.

I was returning home from a friend’s place that day, stoned out of my skull. Jo said while leaving, “Bro, take care, be happy time will heal everything.” That’s the hundred millionth time I hear those words spoken. Sometimes I snap out and say, “Well I didn’t expect it coming.” I was home for winter and the only thing that I believed in was weed. It’s not the weed that I need, it’s the ‘high’ that I need. Jo is an easy go person, he knew how to ‘walk the talk’ and he never gave a slightest f*** about anything. A typical south Indian, post-college, job-goer.

Sometimes I feel worthless while calling up dad for cash. Most of my past college mates are doing well with high paid jobs. And me—I’m a trainee journalist with dreams of changing the world but broken in the inside. For the first time a bad break-up revealed myself to me— weak, stupid, selfless and dramatic. The words, “Pull yourself together young man” keeps buzzing in my ears when I see Mark, my professor every morning.

The other day I found myself in a hotel room wasted and moaning alone. Devdatt knocks on the door, I open it wiping away my tears. “What the f*** is wrong with you looser, get over her,” he takes a seat and continued: “Look at me, I have gone through a lot, don’t call her now.” Such were the words of a 19 year old who has just got into a journalism college after “SCHOOL.” I need school kids to tell me what to do or what not to. Nevertheless, I make the ‘call’ and up being more miserable than I was. Dev was right!

Devdatt and I were out drinking like mad pigs, we had just knocked down 20 shots of Tequila. My memory is dark beyond the last shot glass. I remember waking up to Mark’s phone call, he was yelling out: “Where you, get your ass here for the next class or you are in trouble.” I met Mark in his office the same day when I got back to the hostel. “Pull yourself together young man” he said, I wish I could tell him: “I’m trying Mark, I’m trying!”

Every night, I visit B4, the mysterious room in the hostel that everyone knows about. As I enter the room Koustav is seen dribbling the ball around, he looks at me, takes stance and shoots the ball at me. It almost misses my face; this is the kind of welcome I get, I’m not complaining just saying. Roy and Shekhar are fiercely starring into the laptop screen. It’s FIFA 14 and Shekhar is clutching to his joystick like his whole life depends upon the game. Roy yells out now and then when he misses a goal, we ignore and puff on our nicely made joint. Soumick, with a smile that touches ear-to-ear says, “Salman, did you complete the ethical and legal issues assignment?” I stop whatever I’m doing and turn towards him—“WHAT THE FUCK?” I just realized that I have to do a 2000 word assignment due tonight.

Life at IIJM (Indian Institute of Journalism & New Media) is different, and when I say different, I mean it. We are a family and we aren’t treated as students, the faculty is experienced the facility is satisfactory and everything is fine except for me, I’m confused as always, lost in thoughts that I shouldn’t have. Now that I’m home, I miss the place. I miss waking up to Noah yelling, “Dude its 9 get up” or Abhijith with his quirky Malayalam accent— “Da, eniku da, class undu (Wakeup we got classes).” My roommate Himadri  says that I’m a paying guest to B7(my room number at hostel), he might be true, but B7 is where my bed is and bed is where sleep is and sleep is where dreams are and ‘dreams shall always remain as dreams.’

Sometimes while I’m working at my PC in the media lab, Shameen drags her legs up to my compartment— “Let’s go to Akkas.” Akkas is where IIJNM students’ second life is. Akka is an Indian slang for the word “Aunty”. Aunty owns a shop and feeds us with Maggi, tea, coffee, etc. for a mere price. One day while Shameen and I were feasting on our delicious snack and she goes like, “You know Truffles?” “What’s that?” I ask. “It’s this amazing food joint with great burgers and stuff.” “Let’s go!” I exclaim, “I don’t have money” she says. “Then why do you say such things Shameeeen?” She continues hogging her noodles with an evil smile.

Friends like these are the reason why I have got a life, I can never imagine IIJNM without such people. There are more such friends whom I haven’t mentioned here. For them: Sorry that I couldn’t include you people, you all will remain as sweet memories when I leave. I hope you forgive me for the sins I have committed against you guys and for the sins I’m about to commit.

With just 4 months remaining off my first hostel life, I witnessed change, I rant about change in all my previous posts. But this time I’m vulnerable, I haven’t changed for good, I was forced to be this. I wonder if my fellow Trainee Journalists feel the same, because none of them seem like. Wake up, bathe, dress, work, sleep and repeat. This routine that we follow, do you really think you can change the world by doing things that someone asks us do? Really? I know I sound vague, but these are the kind of thoughts that infiltrate my mind. Merely shoving it off and continuing doesn’t help; I react to my thoughts and sometimes it’s helpful and sometimes it kills me.

I know I still sound vague, can’t help it peeps but this is what I’m.

LOOK-BACK-LOOK-FORWARD-LOOK-AROUND-LOOK-WITHIN

 

Muddebihal’s Sewage System (Critical Thinking Assignment)

In Muddebihal taluk, drains run in the open. There is no underground drainage system in place. Most of the drainage seep through a manually dug trench that runs throughout the taluk.

State highway 124 runs through the heart of the city which have diversions to many other gullies. The drainage that runs through the main roads are covered and the sewage that runs through the gullies and villages remain open.

Most of the drainage just flows into a canal that flows to the nearest ponds, river, etc. There is no sewage treatment plant in place.

Light truck owners in Muddebihal have a designated parking area that is close to the sewage. The parking spot is filled with pigs and the Municipality’s garbage disposal truck dumps the waste in the parking area which causes inconvenience for the truck owners.

The chief municipal officer of the Muddebihal Municipality Corporation said that the state government has sanctioned Rs.40 Crore for building an underground drainage system.

“Once the tender is complete, the construction shall begin sooner,” he added.

The underground sewage project will also include an STP(Sewage Treatment Plant) that shall treat and filter the waste before its being dumped.

 

A short Slideshow on Muddebihal’s Sewage system

Sachin Might be great, but his Indian ”supporters” are Lame…(read on below)

You may not know Sachin, but girl you do know how exactly to use your bat.  Dear Maria, “What the deuce is it to me?” Sherlock interrupted impatiently; “you say that we go round the sun. If we went round the moon it would not make a pennyworth of difference to me or to my work.” These words were uttered by Sherlock Holmes, one of the greatest detective character of all times. He said the above when his friend Watson found that he knew absolutely NOTHING about the Solar System or how it works. Maria Sharapova I think you do a great job at playing tennis. You must be pretty confused receiving hate posts and messages. If it bothers you too much, I pray you reread Sherlock Holmes’ words. Whether fictional or not – the message he conveys is real. I see people everywhere thrashing you. People announcing their hatred for you. I found it pretty depressing. I mean, you don’t know Sachin. So?

You know Maria, I know Sachin. And I love him. His greatness in his field and your greatness in yours are things to be truly proud of. You don’t have to let haters get to you Maria. Personally I think- The world is not gonna END if you don’t know Sachin. The world is not gonna be SAVED either if you do know Sachin. I saw some of the hate messages Sachin’s fans posted on your page. Maria – trust me, they are not Sachin’s fans. They are immature people who’s ego is hurt. Why? Because something so important in their lives means almost nothing to you. In the name of fans, these are actually pathetic people trying to get themselves heard. They are being heard loud and clear Maria. But I feel sad every time I hear them. To see unpleasantness being spread TOWARDS a legend, in the NAME OF another legend – I think they don’t have a life Maria. These “fans” do not get that everyone has different priorities. Sadly, their only priority is making life miserable for you. Their only priority is fighting – for something unworthy of fighting. Don’t be disheartened Maria. I think the only person who should know Sachin is Sachin. Whether the rest know him or not is everyone’s personal business. I know, you must be thinking India is such a sad place to be in.

Maria, I am an Indian. And life is beautiful for me. You’ll find many like me here. We who believe – being a fan is a CHOICE. We don’t judge you based on your choices. Also, there are many living in delusion. They think you played once with Sachin but you are feigning remembrance. But the truth as you know is – you have never played tennis with Sachin. That was the then World number 35 Maria Kirilenko. You could make your haters check out this link: http://sports.ndtv.com/tennis/news/26543-sachin-promotes-sunfeast-open But you know what, don’t. Don’t care. People will read, see and think only what they want to read, see and think. There are a few more people saying you are doing this to take revenge on Sachin – due to some Sponsorship misunderstanding. Maria – I don’t know the truth of this. It’s anyway, still none of anyone’s business. If you honestly do not know him – I admire you Maria. People today want to appear to know-it-all. It’s nice to know at least one person who is not feigning knowledge but accepting ignorance.As a sportsperson and more than that a human being – you stand true to yourselves. If you do know him and still choose to say “no” – That’s your business. Not mine. Not anyone else’s. You are a human being too. And you have the right to make mistakes. Flaws are beautiful too Maria.

These fans who claim they know Sachin PERFECTLY. Well, they DON’T KNOW Sachin. I mean it. They just don’t. Yes they might know his cricket highlights, his best games, his worst times, his wife, his kids, his age, anything – yet they still don’t know him. They don’t know how disappointed Sachin is in them. How disappointed, that in his name – they create meaningless controversies. That in his name, they justify being unpleasant, heartless, jobless and plain moronic. Sachin would have been happier if his fans had more important things in life – like maybe, themselves. Maria, you have always been a strong person. And if these leeches ever manage to crawl right on your skin – you know a tennis bat can be used to more than just smash balls right? 

I hope these people realize that. That for you, more than knowing Sachin – the important thing is you know how exactly to use your bat. You go girl!  Yours sincerely, A person who doesn’t know you. (all that well) 

 

By, Sheeba Sulthana (Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/heartstaar)

I cant act like I don’t give a f*** anymore!

To coimbatore,To my friends, To my college SKASC, To my professors, To my principal and last but not the least To my parents.

I have a life and still do. I was born with a right (Everyone is), I had my right to choose, and you took it from me. You named me(Well I love my name), you played games with my mind. You pinned me down every time I revoked. All I wanted was education, I paid for it and in return you gave me pressure, emotional torture, frustration and what not? I spent almost 3 years in this pit struggling to stand up! I cannot believe it, me and my 3000+ friends in my college have paid for emotional slavery! And we poor bastards have no idea what on earth was going on around us neither we knew how to stop it, all we knew that was, trouble was coming!

I accuse my college for doctrine, I accuse my professors for crime against humanity, I accuse myself for being stupid! Seriously you think we students come to study? We are also humans; we have eyes to see and hands to feel. We too want to live not die! How dare you take our money and fool us? How dare you snatch us from the freedom, you prevented us from wearing clothes that make us comfortable and forced us to wear things that you want us to. You asked us to come clean shaven when our beards and moustaches just started sprouting up (We were just experimenting not ruining ourselves). You taught us subjects, chapters and units that we surely know shall never help us in any manner whatsoever!

Life is the same for all; we live each moment either sadly or happily. You turned down our brains into a stand still where we are not even sure what we are feeling. You made us write hefty laboratory records that meant nothing (neither to us or you). You all are hypocrites. You went through the same that we all did and you never tried to change, you knew education is no more pleasant but you passed down this crime for ages.
Companies! You think you own us? You Bastards we are living things not robots. We know very well what you guys do and we still came to you hoping for liberation, a change! But you put us through more than what we can take and drained us! Do you know something? This world is going to end someday but you ego shall never will! We came to you to earn some money to support our families; in return you took a piece of us! You took our peace, you took our happiness you took away our courage. YOU TOOK OUR IDENTITY!

You made a system that produce a system and put us in it, and do we do? Dance with your flow? Yes that’s what we did exactly. We danced to your music, we swayed on your rhymes and now we are hypocrites too. You criminals made us criminals too! You notorious morons we want to live not die!

Guys and girls I urge from deep within my heart, STAND UP FOR YOUR FUCKING RIGHTS!!! You pay for knowledge that shall help you, you did things that never helped you, you lived for them(You only did things that helped others, you made profit for the company and nothing for yourselves, you paid for knowledge when it is freely available, you were stripped of from your right to choose right from the beginning) ! At least once stand up, they shall push you down please do stand-up fight, we all are cowards including me. Change yourselves not the system! Change one by one and see everything change around! Why do we complicate things when you know that life is much easier when things are simpler? WAKE UP, SHAKE UP and fight!

Mistakes are for Winners!

A mistake, according to the English dictionary is defined as an error in action, calculation, opinion or judgment caused by poor reasoning, insufficient knowledge or carelessness. Philosophers and great thinkers might tell that a human being is bound to make mistakes; not only humans but animals do make mistakes. When a fierce wild lion tries to hunt down its prey it does not always mean that the lion could capture a fast moving pray in the first try. It’s rather possible only with days of practice and failure. This is the natures’ proof that mistakes happen for a reason; and that reason is that mistakes prove to be life lessons. No human being walked this planet without committing a sin or mistakes. The lion would never get his stomach filled without his timely mistakes. In the same manner a human being is bound to make such great and smaller mistake that teaches him a lesson of failure.

This does not imply that failure happens due to mistakes. Sometimes failure happens due to utter ignorance of responsibility, trust, etc. World leaders like Adolf Hitler, George bush and Obama have all learnt from their mistakes. Famous sportspersons like Sachin and Lionel Messi and other important personalities have made mistakes which has brought them to immense world recognition as leaders in the sport they play. Committing a mistake is purely a mistake, it is nothing but a mistake that is happening or bound to happen which implies that human mind is not aware that the action or work being done is a mistake unless and until he completes the work or action.
Keeping in mind that mistakes are just a simple flaw in thought process I’m now proceeding to what religion and priests have to tell on this subject. Religion has a key role in changing people’s mind. Once born as an infant, he knows exactly nothing, his brain and senses starts picking up what he sees and experiences. A human infant learns from his parents. Then the child is baptized as a Christian or brought up with tales of Ramayana and bhagavat gita or he is bought up by the call to prayer in a mosque. As he grows he is fully aware of things that are right and things that are wrong. Right from the childhood he has been told that one must not make mistakes, if one does then he shall die in vain or he shall rot in the hell or he shall be fried in hell fire like a chicken tandoori . Much to my surprise all of these children make a dozens of mistake, they learn from their mistakes, and at the same time they are also told that if one makes mistake then he shall be tortured in some vicious hell fire; this is CHILD ABUSE. When we humans are fully aware that mistakes do happen, then why would the same person tell their loved ones right from the childhood that mistakes are to be weighted and punished for in some hell fire.

This sickening concept of torture and beating for making ‘MISTAKES’ is confusing. In the start of my article I mentioned that a mistake is an unplanned or intended activity. How can some be punished for a ‘mistake’ that one does unknowingly? How can God the almighty who showers his blessing and mercifulness and kindness torture someone for committing something that one is not aware of when one is doing it? Isn’t this ridiculous? Why, why, why? Why do humans make mistakes ask this question to yourself and after that imagine yourself being tortured for making a mistake?

We are born with some basic rights, one of them is the right to choose. If there exists numerous religions and faith? Why not leave the choice faith to the individual. Why do parents have to stereotype him and force one to follow a particular belief that he has no clue of. Is this an act of stupidity or is this all a mistake? Is human kind and society a mistake? Where have we put ourselves in this beautiful world? We have spoilt the beauty of nature. Segregation, racism, terrorism, corruption, rape, violence murder? Where does all this arise from? Does this all have a common link to the faith we are forced to comply with or does these condemned activities arise just simply out of nowhere? Let’s all wind up and start form the age of dinosaurs. We know that all dinosaurs are not the same, and yet no one separated them on the basis of caste, religion,etc. Then came humans. In the early ages the discovery of fire sparked a shock and disbelief. Man then learnt to cook his food with fire and warm themselves during the unforgiving winter. Then man saw the sun, the moon the massive mountains, man was left awe inspired with all he saw and experienced. Since fire protected him form danger and at the same time served many different purposes, he regarded fire as ultimate, and began worshipping it. He worshipped the sun that shed its light during a solar eclipse, man worshipped the moon that guided him at night with a faint light. In short whatever helped him make life easier to live he regarded them as God the ultimate. Then came the religious outgrowth of Christians, Mohammedians, Sikhs, jews, etc. Then came vehicles, telescopes, the bulb that lighted up our homes. It was the advancement of science and technology that led the way!

Soon the sun, the moon and the fire was no more worshipped man created THE GOD to satisfy his spiritual urges. It was spread by word of mouth, by the sword and by books. And now we have a world where brothers are ready to kill brothers, spilling blood across the land. We have priests that say humans must not make mistakes? I have to ask these priests out of curiosity, a mistake is something that is uncalculated or unintended, how can these people accuse us for making mistakes. Religious scholars and priests all must be accused of crime. A silent crime that’s never spoken or heard. A crime of mental torture and spreading a sense of confusion in people’s minds. Yes they have committed crimes, something the world does not understand. Something the world forgets everyday. Priests have deprived us by covering our eyes with and brain with the black cloth of faith and religion. No religion asked man to kill his brothers, but these priests who have rogue does!

We are all born with wings to fly! Why chop them off and suffer? The people who preserve their wings and let them grow are the ones who make the difference. We must all know that a human individual is born not to be tortured for the mistakes he makes, I think he is rather born so that he must find the reason of life and serve his sentence in this earth as a free man and not as a ‘Mentally caged bird’!