The best way to know the self is feeling oneself at the moments of reckoning. The feeling of being alone, just with your senses, may lead you to think more consciously. More and more of such moments may sensitize ‘you towards you’, towards others. We become regular with introspection and retrospection. We get ‘the’ gradual connect to the higher self we may name Spirituality or God or just a Humane Conscious. We tend to get a rhythm again in life. We need to learn the art of being lonely in crowd while being part of the crowd. A multitude of loneliness in mosaic of relations! One needs to feel it severally, with conscience, before making it a way of life. One needs to live several such lonely moments. One needs to live severallyalone.

Thursday, 8 October 2015


"I had questions, and I had reservations, and
With time, I had learnt to live with those unanswered questions
But, only to come to this
When I felt all was amiss
Like a life with vague directions and all its ramifications..

Then, all of a sudden, I met some colours so overwhelming, with
Uplifting vibes that took me away from everything denigrating
I felt like in a trance
Far removed from that day’s comeuppance
Filling those voids in my thoughts that were so suffocating.."


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -


Today, the second most 'popular' (among masses) and second most 'controversial' (among classes) Nobel Prize will be announced.

The Nobel Committee of the Swedish Academy, in two hours from now, will announce the name(s) of the winner(s) of this year's Nobel Prize in Literature (Literature Nobel).

The Nobel Prize in Peace (or Peace Nobel) is geopolitically the most influential award in the world that draws global attention to an issue the individual(s)/organization(s) is working for. The implicit or explicit political posturing associated with the Peace Nobel draws plaudits or ire based on stakeholders involved and based on the geopolitical contexts pushed.

And Literature Nobel, too, pushes for controversies for similar reasons - political stand or political bias - added with 'other than literature' factors like Sweden bias or Europe bias or English bias or 'fear of controversy bias' - while announcing a winner - and its most famous (or notorious) example is 1970's decision to award Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, a USSR dissident, and a famous anti-Soviet Union novelist and historian.  

The Nobel Committee of the Swedish Academy - a 230 year old literary institution founded by the Swedish king - based on geopolitical considerations (or equations),  at times, names a winner to give message to a ruling regime - because the larger (or the more powerful) world community feels so (or lobbies for that).

Literature Nobel has also been and 'left, right and centre' criticised for being too Sweden-centric or too Europe-centric. The trend (or the mentality) has led to many decisions which the critics have found too casual and light. While very few people knew about Herta Muller, the 2009 winner, the 2004 decision to award Elfriede Jelinek came as a shocker to many.

But the buzz around the award remains. Literature Nobel is still the singular global literature award that bring its recipient a chance to gain worldwide exposure - if it is not already there.  And we hope, in a multipolar, multi-block world, we will have less of 'other than political bias' affected decisions - with a wider, multi-language panorama.

Every year it happens, the buzz around these two most talked about Nobel Prizes, Peace and Literature.

The buzz starts taking root soon after the nomination starts and starts taking a definitive shape once the nominations are closed and the concerned Nobel Committees short-lists that ‘small and final list’ from out of hundreds of nominations. It starts peaking around in August and reaches its crescendo in the week prior to the announcements in October.

And that October day is today - in two hours from now. 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -

Wednesday, 7 October 2015


We are ‘me’ and we are ‘we’. I don’t look at you yet I know you are an inseparable element, like we were, like we are, like we will be. I know you are my precinct, a sanctorum distinct.

We have been in this communion for so long that I understand your silence and you follow my provenance. I know where to go in times, when I feel oblong, and thus jaded and lost, and you take me in, within your lines.

We know what colors we wear and we consciously try everything else to bear. We have remained together in life’s summers and winters, we have sailed through the waters of its rainy days, and we have relished on its fruits of spring.

We are ‘me’ and we are ‘we’. You give me a shape and I am your escape, skinned into togetherness of us.  I know you are my limit and you know I love to go beyond this limit. 


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Tuesday, 6 October 2015


When I had seen that in your hands
Just my type was the expression
Breaking the mutual silence between us
That we had so wanted to preserve
Like the purity of words of our promises
Like the sanity of the first time
Like the wisdom folded in your hands
The silence that let us be ourselves
We did speak within the those confines
With the tenderness of your feelings
Singing along in the harmony of souls
The object in your hands was within me
And I loved the way you reciprocated then
Felt like the elusive rain in that summer
Transcending on spring of our silence
I had never thought – if it could be
The worlds within us didn't need so
But we lived the moment as we would


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Monday, 5 October 2015


“An English doctor, on hearing that the law student was a vegetarian, insisted that he make an exception for beef-tea, since, unlike in the tropics, where a diet based on grain and vegetables would do, ‘in the cold climate of England the addition of beef or mutton is essential’. They argued, back and forth, till the doctor, in exasperation, exclaimed: ‘You must either take beef-tea or die!’ Gandhi answered that ‘if it were God’s will that I should die I must die, but I was sure it could not be God’s will that I should break the oath that I made on my mother’s knee before I left India’.”

Mahatma Gandhi | Experiments with eating – Ramchandra Guha – Livemint – October 5, 2013

That is what the Mahatma or Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi followed about his diet in his life as a law student in England. And it remained so throughout his life. He revered cow. He preferred to die than to include beef in his routine.

But, though he was a staunch Hindu, he was the one with a deeply secular worldview. He never advocated ‘legal ban’ on cow slaughter based on religious grounds. The man, who till last fought to prevent India’s partition, the man who saw India as the motherland with a diverse cultural heritage of different religions, the man who advocated ‘Hindustani’, with combined tradition of Hindi and Urdu, as the ‘lingua franca’ of India – he could have never said so.

The Hindu’s account of his last 200 days (Mahatma Gandhi: The Last 200 Days, p19) says – “The Mahatma was irrevocably convinced that the people of independent India should be linked by Hindustani, a language comprising the scripts and resources of both Hindi and Urdu, and that English should only be of secondary importance.”

Political India is in midst of a legacy war to claim ‘patronage’ of the ‘brand Gandhi’ but every person trying it must remember that it can happen only the ‘Mahatma way’.

And among many visions of a grand independent India vision were the Mahatma’s views on cow slaughter and beef eating – because cow protection has been a central religious theme in India in every period.

The Hindu’s book on his last 200 days says (p19) – “In his prayer meeting, Gandhiji again roundly criticised the hypocrisy of Hindus who sold their cattle for the animal to find their way to butchers, and yet demanded a Government ban on cow slaughter.”

An article on the website The Wire has published a long, translated version of this – from the ‘Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi, Volume 88, the Gandhi Heritage Portal - based on the Mahatma’s observations on the day (July 25, 1947). Here it is:

Rajendra Babu tells me that he has received some 50,000 postcards, between 25,000 and 30,000 letters and many thousands of telegrams demanding a ban on cow-slaughter. I spoke to you about this before. Why this flood of telegrams and letters? They have had no effect.

I have another telegram which says that a friend has started a fast for this cause. In India no law can be made to ban cow-slaughter. I do not doubt that Hindus are forbidden the slaughter of cows. I have been long pledged to serve the cow but how can my religion also be the religion of the rest of the Indians? It will mean coercion against those Indians who are not Hindus.

We have been shouting from the house-tops that there will be no coercion in the matter of religion. We have been reciting verses from the Koran at the prayer. But if anyone were to force me to recite these verses I would not like it. How can I force anyone not to slaughter cows unless he is himself so disposed? It is not as if there were only Hindus in the Indian Union. There are Muslims, Parsis, Christians and other religious groups here.

The assumption of the Hindus that India now has become the land of the Hindus is erroneous. India belongs to all who live here. If we stop cow slaughter by law here and the very reverse happens in Pakistan, what will be the result? Supposing they say Hindus would not be allowed to visit temples because it was against Shariat to worship idols? I see God even in a stone but how do I harm others by this belief? If therefore I am stopped from visiting temples I would still visit them. I shall therefore suggest that these telegrams and letters should cease. It is not proper to waste money on them.

I have been long pledged to serve the cow but how can my religion also be the religion of the rest of the Indians? It will mean coercion against those Indians who are not Hindus.

Besides some prosperous Hindus themselves encourage cow-slaughter. True, they do not do it with their own hands. But who sends all the cows to Australia and other countries where they are slaughtered and whence shoes manufactured from cow hide are sent back to India? I know an orthodox Vaishnava Hindu. He used to feed his children on beef soup. On my asking him why he did that he said there was no sin in consuming beef as medicine.

We really do not stop to think what true religion is and merely go about shouting that cow-slaughter should be banned by law. In villages Hindus make bullocks carry huge burdens which almost crush the animals. Is it not cow-slaughter, albeit slowly carried out? I shall therefore suggest that the matter should not be pressed in the Constituent Assembly…

I have been asked, ‘Since in view of the atrocities being perpetuated by Muslims it is difficult to decide which of the Muslims are to be trusted, what should be our attitude towards the Muslims in the Indian Union? What should the non-Muslims in Pakistan do?

I have already answered this question. I again repeat that all the religions of India today are being put to the test. It has to be seen how the various religious groups such as the Sikhs, the Hindus, the Muslims and the Christians conduct themselves and how they carry on the affairs of India. Pakistan may be said to belong to Muslims but the Indian Union belongs to all. If you shake off cowardice and become brave you will not have to consider how you are to behave towards the Muslims. But today there is cowardice in us. For this I have already accepted the blame.

In villages Hindus make bullocks carry huge burdens which almost crush the animals. Is it not cow-slaughter, albeit slowly carried out?

I am still wondering how my 30 years’ teaching has been so ineffective. Why did I assume, to begin with, that non-violence could be a weapon of cowards? Even now if we can really become brave and love the Muslims, the Muslims will have to stop and think what they could gain by practising treachery against us. They will return love for love. Can we keep the crores of Muslims in the Indian Union as slaves? He who makes slaves of others himself becomes a slave. If we answer sword with sword, the lathi with lathi and kick with kick, we cannot expect that things will be different in Pakistan. We shall then lose our freedom as easily as we have gained it…

[Translated from Hindi] - Prarthana Pravachan –I, pp 277-280

The website published this account in the context of the mob lynching incident of a Muslim Indian citizen in Delhi’s neighbourhood Greater Noida ‘for allegedly slaughtering a cow and storing beef in his house’. The man was killed and his son was left critically injured.

And political parleys are on to politicise the matter – to polarize votes on religious lines – to gain upper hand in the Bihar assembly election that is beginning on October 12 and in the Uttar Pradesh assembly election in early months of 2017.  

What the Mahatma had spoken some 68 years ago still holds true. Today, Hindus are in fact major beneficiaries of beef export. After 68 years of independence, India, with all its problems, is a strong and functional democracy – the largest in the world – with a transparent electoral process. And in such a democracy, questions like ‘legal ban’ on cow slaughter or ‘beef’ on religious grounds would never ne logical.

The Hindu’s book about Bapu’s last 200 days further says (p19-20) – Bapu concluded, “If we can become brave, and love the minorities, they will return love for love… Can we make crores of minority people slaves?... We should remember that he who would make slaves of others does himself become a slave.”

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 


Shielding my solitude
Standing-up with my screened soliloquy

Silence spoke again 


©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Sunday, 4 October 2015


Or Bisheda..or Bishera..or Bisara.. 

These names, irrespective of their localized/dialectic forms, are symbolic of our politics of the day, and in a way, also convey how the society is responding to the political calls.

These two villages in Greater Noida, in Delhi's neighbourhood, have been in the news for all wrong reasons.

Bhatta Parsaul first came in headlines in May 2011 after violent clashes between police and villagers leaving some police officials and villagers dead. Villagers were protesting against acquisition of their land by the state government.

Back then, as is the trend, the issue got heavily politicised soon - aggravated by the fact that the state assembly elections were due in the early months of next year, in 2012. Bhatta Parsaul became the rallying point for all political outfits including the Congress party - then ruling India with its Delhi government led by Manmohan Singh. Uttar Pradesh had then BSP's government and Mayawati was the chief minister.

We are well over four years past that incident. And Bhatta Parsual still rings the bell for same reason.

The other major symbolism that goes to Bhatta Parsaul is as political as the 'issue of forced land acquisition' in India. 

Rahul Gandhi tries to create symbolic entities during the course of his political journey and Bhatta Parsaul came to symbolize his 'appeal' for 'pro farmer land policies'.

The world remembers the way Rahul Gandhi had dodged the state security apparatus to reach the village. But in spite of Rahul's desperate efforts to reap political mileage, Congress was badly humiliated again, in the UP assembly polls - including Jewar - the assembly constituency seat Bhatta Parsaul comes under. Rahul's experiment had given ticket to a person who had helped Rahul reach Bhatta Parsaul on his bike. But he could earn voters’ trust. 

The important message from this outcome was - people had started reading signs – and needed more than political rhetoric and associated acts. Land acquisition is a socially burning issue no doubt but BSP's win and Congress' loss, even at Jewar seat, told us the issue could not sway the electorate.

Or people saw political designs of every political outfit and decided to go with the BSP MLA in spite of BSP being in the power.

Rahul Gandhi had tried to use 'Bhatta Parsaul symbolism' again in the last year's parliamentary elections but the defeat this time was deafening - in India, in Uttar Pradesh, and in most states in India.

In that sense, we can say Bhatta Parsaul refused to become the political bogey around the sensitive issue of land acquisition in a country where agriculture still supports the major section of the population.

It is a different thing that voters were running short of options. 

Bisada – a Greater Noida village - has begun the rallying point for vested political interests – with another round of important assembly polls beginning just in a week in Bihar and with Uttar Pradesh assembly elections just 18 months away. 

On Monday night, a mob killed a Muslim Indian citizen for allegedly slaughtering a cow and consuming beef. 

While land is sensitive issue affecting common Indians of every religion and people have started acting more informed on related policy matters, religion is still the opium of the masses. 

The Western Uttar Pradesh Hindu-Muslim riots before the Lok Sabha elections last year were the worst India saw in its recent history – and the trigger was rumour mongering that, left unchecked, led to violent chest thumping and subsequently to full scale religious violence. 

Humanity is still reeling in its aftermath. Bisada must not instigate another round. The culprits must be dealt with ruthlessly. And the state machinery, and humanity, must ensure that rumour mongers and ‘the people spewing hate venom’ must not be seen around. Just some routine ‘financial and job compensation’ stuff won’t do. 

Bisada of Greater Noida must not be allowed to become Kawal of Muzaffarnagar. Kawal lynching had spread like wildfire resulting in the riots. #DadriLynching or lynching in Bisada must be addressed strictly to avoid any repeat. 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Saturday, 3 October 2015


Yesterday, I posted 2000th post on ‘Beyond This Life’, my first blogging platform here.

In over six years, since I started writing in organized way - since then, I have diversified my content platforms – starting other blogs and a complete website last year – but so far, ‘Beyond This Life’ has been the only omnibus place.

And though, I had not planned it, it came on October 2, on birth anniversary of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi or Mahatma Gandhi or Bapu.

I see my writing endeavors as an ongoing journey. I write extensively and as people say – quite prolifically – and completing a milestone point on this journey on the day I was writing on my best ideal from the contemporary political world – from the modern political history of the world - was a pleasant chance event.

I have learnt to celebrate myself – I enjoy going within – and I do so all the time. I feel it’s the best remedy to coexist with life. But on some days, with reasons like this, you feel special about yourself – and no doubt, my ‘celebration’ was charmed by this chance occurrence.

I started with first post on ‘Beyond This Life’ on July 1, 2009 and completed six years on July 1 this year – the day that I celebrate with ‘myself’ as my ‘blogging day’. In these six years, I have shaped three more blogs and one professional looking website that is my personal web journal.

I write on and about everything that clicks me. My posts include analytical write-ups, research based write-ups, social writings, life experiences, satires, fiction, poetry and photography.

The good thing about it is – that I feel after six years – that my flow is free of targets and goalposts. I had not thought of what I would write about next when I had started ‘Beyond This Life’, and I still don’t plan what I would post next. I just try to maintain the continuity with a ‘daily rhythm’ to satisfy my urge.

Yes, when you walk on a journey, you have different stages when you reflect back on to take stock to look further. For me, the correlating wavelength is the body of writing that I have been able to put together – some of it online and most of it offline.

I do not have plans on what I would write next – beyond my thought process hinged on this ‘beautiful coincidence – my 2000 posts on 2nd October – the day that now the world observes as the ‘International Day of Non-Violence’ – in a rightful spirit to pay tribute to the great who became ‘the universal conscience ofhumanity’.

It was indeed a day of doubled up joy for me. 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Friday, 2 October 2015


Mahatma Gandhi will always remain great because he was one among us – and he will always remain ‘the one’ among us. 

And for that reason – and for that reason alone – October 2 will remain the universal day of humanity – not just in India – but across the world. 

And the world is celebrating this spirit – the UN has declared October 2 – the birth anniversary of the Mahatma – as the ‘International Day of Non-Violence’.

The movement was initiated in 2004 and the UN had adopted it in 2007. The UN page on the day says – “The International Day is an occasion to "disseminate the message of non-violence, including through education and public awareness". The resolution reaffirms "the universal relevance of the principle of non-violence" and the desire "to secure a culture of peace, tolerance, understanding and non-violence".”

Yes, non-violence is the only universal principle that can guide the humankind to an egalitarian world – where each human life has same scalability.

And non-violence is the only guiding principle that can ensure equal distribution of opportunities to each human life.

The Mahatma will always remain great because we know the world, in spite of realizing the ‘inevitability’ of non-violence, has failed to build a ‘humanitarian world’. 

History of human civilization is replete with violence – men killing men. The world is still plagued with ‘man-created’ violence in many parts of the world. 

The modern day world – with its contemporary times – is best chance for humanity to aspire for a world of ‘universal humanity’ – and that world can only be built by eradicating wars and other forms of terror. 

But, in the prevailing geopolitical circumstances, that looks a ‘far-fetched’, hypothetical concept. 

Well, when the Mahatma had started practicing non-violence, first in South Africa and then in India, to oppose, and then to uproot the mighty British Empire, people had dismissed him first. Gandhi used to be a subject of mock initially.  

And we all know the might of ‘Satyagraha-non-violence’ today. 

It was the might of ‘Satyagraha’ only that could ‘successfully’ take on the might of British Empire. We recently witnessed this ‘might’ again – not just in India – but in many parts of the world. The underlying theme of every mass protest in the recent history – the global ‘Occupy’ movement, the Arab Spring, anti-corruption movements of India and Pakistan, universalization of Guy Fawkes masks as the symbol of mass protests – has been the principle of non-violence. 

Strengthening democracies and minimizing wars are the basic needs of the day – and non-violence is the basic tenet, the guiding conscience behind every such thought process.  

And life the Mahatma is its best manifestation – and a robustly functional Indian democracy is the best tribute to him. 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - 

Thursday, 1 October 2015


On September 29, Google launched new series of Nexus devices. Yes, new Chromecast was also there.

But though Nexus has its own followers - and the Nexus mobile handsets are among the hot handsets in any market - its nowhere near to what iPhone commands - in terms of market share and in terms of brand equity.

iPhone, in fact, is the most suitable example of our times so far on 'how brands can affect campaigns/public relations exercises around them'.

And when the world says that iPhone alone earns more in revenue than overall turnout of its nearest competitor, it sums up the central point about the brand in one word - perfect.

Yes, iPhone is the perfect brand to weave any communication package around it and like any 'perfect' brand, the company behind iPhone does least of the job on 'promotion front'. The rest is done by the world outside the company - the world inhabited by media outlets, analysts, enthusiasts and sophomores of the virtual/online world and people across the world.

When Apple launches an iPhone, the world talks about it. Apple telecasts the event live and whole world catches every bit of it - the world inhabited, again, by iPhone enthusiasts, media outlets and analysts.

The iPhone launch event is top ranked trend on every social media platform across the globe. News channels go live with the event in the most of the countries.  As is the trend now, Twitter and Facebook generate an intense buzz of opinions/voices. This year, a quick glance revealed the event to launch iPhone was trending on top in Twitter trends in most of the markets - when it was launched on September 9.

In fact, the word around the next iphone starts doing rounds just  few months after the launch event and reaches to the deafening levels as the traditional annual launch date in September nears.

Nexus also commands some good media attraction and fans attachment - but on every parameter - the launch event proves a lacklustre performance when compared with the Apple event.

To continue.. 

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey -