Archive for February, 2006


Folks, welcome the newest kid on the “metblog”. Its Nashville, in the state of Tennessee. A great rocking city, in the southern heartland of US.

Give them a holler here.

Between Khar & Bandra

What lies between Khar Road and Bandra?

1. A Graveyard
2. A Crematorium
3. A Turntable
4. All of the above
5. None of the above

As the train takes up the bridge to cross over from the Western Line to the Harbour Line, the horizon opens up and a new world unfolds.

The Best Auto-Rickshaw Wallahs in the World


Anywhere else in India you think auto-rickshaw wallah and the first word that come to your head is crook. This is not the case in Mumbai.

Amateur Blogger explains why – as he compares auto-wallahs in Mumbai to the ones in Hyderabad.

One thing that struck me about Mumbai as different from any other Indian city I’ve visited was that autos very infrequently refuse to go to a particular destination, they charge you by the meter, the meters are all in order (no hanky-panky), and they will not round off the fare to the next multiple of 10. There is an exception to this, however, the Mumbai airport, where they will rip you apart. For the most part, though, it is almost a pleasure dealing with the auto-wallahs in that city.

Another thing is that it seems to be the only city which seems to value time. The fare shown by the meter is a function of time, in addition to being a function of the distance as it is everywhere else. And a major difference as well: a ride from Goregaon to the domestic airport in Santacruz, took me 1.5 hours and 110 rupees, while on the way back (at 4:30 AM in the morning) it took me 20 minutes and 60 rupees (didn’t even charge me night fare). Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think that happens in any other city.

Power Crisis – Part 2

We thought that the previous three proposals putforth by the BEST to overcome the shortfall of 300 megawatts (MW) were extremely stupid, look what more the suggestions, the general manager of BEST, Swadhin Kshatriya, has come up with.

• No power supply for open-air marriage functions

• But political rallies held on open grounds will receive power supply for security reasons

• City shops should remain shut mandatorily one day a week

• Five star hotels, shops and other private establishments will have to forgo decorative lighting

Thankfully, he has some common-sense….

• Emergency services will be exempted from powercuts

• Call centres, railways, signal systems on junction, defence bodies, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, water supply and high-rise buildings with elevators should also be exempted from powercuts

On the other hand, take a look at these stats…

• Using these measures, BEST can save only 2 MW power per day

• Mumbai uses 600 MW to 800 MW of
electricity per day in the summer. Currently, there is a shortfall of 275 MW per day

• In the summer of 2005, the maximum power consumption was 806 MW per day

Complete story, here.

Power Crisis

Finally the summer heat is here. A bit too early, month of Feb is still on. Surely we all will be boiling in Mumbai pot by mid March. Besides the heat, Mumbaikars are mostly likely to suffer even more thanks to power crisis.

Inorder to save us from intense misery, the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) has come up with three proposals, which it hopes will tide over the shortfall of 300 megawatts (MW), expected to go up to 500 MW in summer.

1) The Undertaking has proposed to ask cinema halls to stop shows from 6 pm to 12 midnight. This means that people will be deprived of the 6 pm and 9 pm movies.

2) Will suggest to the Maharashtra Electric Regulatory Commission (MERC) to order cable operators in the city not to operate cable TV between 6 pm and 9 pm. This, says BEST, will save an estimated 500 MW.

3) Commercial establishments have been asked to set their temperatures above 26°C and delay switching on ACs by one hour. Similarly, they should switch them off an hour earlier each day.

The BEST is going to table its proposals before the BEST committee today, following which it will be submitted to the technical committee comprising representatives of BEST, Reliance, Tata and MSEB.

However, its very unlikely that any of the following recommendations would be approved. I mean come to think of it, the suggestions if applied would put people out of business and deprive Mumbaikars from their daily dose of entertainment.

Though in my opinion, the first and second suggestions are ridiculous. However the third one can surely be worked upon.

Read rest of the story, here.

Fallen Curtain

A few weeks ago I did a post about Experimenta 2006, a experimental film festival in Mumbai. Here is a peek into Experimenta 2006
Experimenta Red.
It was such a pleasant evening, away from my textbooks, at the cultural centre of a former super power, watching experimental movies. The USSR to most of my generation is ancient history and why not ? The Soviet Union ceased to exist in ’91. At the time I was merely 6-therefore my knowledge of the former Soviet Union and the cold war has been defined by news articles, films and people around me. I remember a grainy picture of ‘Gorbachev’ on the front page of the daily newspaper- the bold headline announced the dissolution of USSR. I remember it not because I found it important but because people around me did. It was the end of an era of madness. An era in which a divide in ideology almost drove the world into chaos. Sadly we find ourselves today in another era and a different form of madness; even worse is the overlooked fact that one of the players in this new game of madness is the same.

Why am I launching into rant about the iron curtain you ask ?

Well, it was part of the selection of films I was lucky enough to view at friday’s showing of Experimenta 2006, as part of the short film program curated by Marcel Schwierin titled the “The Fallen Curtain.”
‘The Fallen Curtain” did have a sense of irony in the context of the venue of Experimenta. Short films looking at the Soviet Union being viewed at the building that once was the centre for its culture [in the city] but has now been reduced with a change in name and flag to something else.

The first presentation ‘Cosmic Science’ was a look into some of the scientific contours of the Cold War. The films did deviate from the topic in the end adding some positive breadth to the showing.

Rudy’s in Town – Part 2

Sadly, due to unforeseen circumstances I could not make it to the lecture yesterday. I am a little disappointed, Arzan is not the first person to have told me he is a captivating speaker [Sigh]. On the flip side the papers today give us a good run through.

Yesterday, I mentioned

“Personally I feel the lecture will be a interesting if Giulliani touches upon his experience as Mayor of New York in the context of a city like Mumbai. Giulliani is given the credit of reducing crime in New York by adopted an aggressive public policing strategy based on James Q. Wilson’s Broken Windows theory. Though Steven B Levitt‘s Roe Vs Wade theory refutes the broken windows theory, but that is quiet a different matter.

Hindustan Times tells me that he did exactly that.

More on BEST

Nilesh has the following titbits of information on our favourite public bus operator.

Bus Route No. 166 – plies on roads interconnecting maximum Hospitals.

Bus Route No. 161 – This route covers on the way maximum Oil Reservoirs and unpopulated areas in Eastern wings of the city.

Bus Route No. 9 – A network of large number of school and colleges is interwoven by this route.

Bus Route No. 320, 22ltd., 25ltd. – These routes have an outstanding feature of connecting two largest water reservoirs of the city.

Bus Route No. 1,66,202 – Round the clock operating bus routes.

Rudy’s in Town

Rudy Giuliani, famed former mayor of New York, former Times person of the year, Republican and possible republican presidential candidate for 2008 will be in Mumbai today for the erstwhile Sir Dorab Tata Memorial Lecture. Mr Giuliani will be delivering his lecture on ‘Principles on Leadership’

The lecture is free to the public and commences at 6 p.m at the Tata Theatre, N.C.P.A.

Personally I feel the lecture will be a interesting if Giulliani touches upon his experience as Mayor of New York in the context of a city like Mumbai. Giulliani is given the credit of reducing crime in New York by adopted an aggressive public policing strategy based on James Q. Wilson’s Broken Windows theory. Though Steven B Levitt‘s Roe Vs Wade theory refutes the broken windows theory, but that is quiet a different matter.

All the same I’ll be there.

The Emperor Has New Clothes

If you thought you reached a different website, dont be surprised. Because yes the emperor has new clothes.

The Metroblogging Empire has a completely new revamped designed. And is it amped up or what !! In typical bambaiya language it is “JHAKAAS”

Lots of new thingies….iconomania is the name of the game. At the bottom of every entry you will find a bunch of icons. Each is self explanatory and in a few days will become indispensable to you dear reader.

The options list has a lot for all you taggers….you know who you are out there now !!

But in the midst of all this, let me remind you that its the same good ol’ metroblogging content you have come to expect.

Like it, love it, or hate it. We want to hear. Comments section is open and your voice needs to be heard.

The official Bode Media Inc. announcement is here.

And last but not the least a big applause to Sean Bonner and Jason Defillippo for this mega makeover.

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