My grandma has tears in her eye.

The wind that blows now is full of dust.

She opens her eye in contempt and disgust.

She cannot look up to the dry barren horizon.

She closes her eyes in pity and remorse. 


A tear, tired and impotent like her dreams


Aimlessly down her cheek –

Finding its lonesome way

Through the wrinkled highway.

I hold her palm.


But her fingers don’t speak to me like they used to.

They don’t even stir.

However the wrinkles steadily are making

An impression of passive hopelessness. 


Those are the fingers that had sown

So many seeds in the backyard

Of the old house.

All that is gone now.

The tenements now have paved –

Cemented – covered – constructed places

In the backyard, for inevitable chores

Like washing and storing things.

No room for her plants now.

Grandma, I believe died with her plants.


I want to wipe out her tears

And tell her that the world is

Never the same next second.

What with all these thermonuclear tests,

Ozone holes, Acid rains, Scams, Bans,

Global Warming etc. etc….

And this one-eyed monster of a TV…

The world is changing too fast for me too.

I want to tell her that I’m perhaps

As outdated and old as she is. 


But still,

I want to go on living and am

Grateful to her.

‘Coz she first bore the womb

That brought me to this world.


I don’t think she’ll apprehend.

She’ll go on living with that

Lost, forlorn and deceived look

In her sad teary eyes

And see the posterity dance to the tunes

That don’t even sound like music to her.

But I believe she died with her plants.

Whose Citizenship Is It Anyway?

There are two kinds of people. Those who are a burden on the community they live in: i.e who suck out of it more than they give. The leeches, the parasites, the scamsters, the million dollar package corporate heads, bankers who siphon poor farmers’ funds, the politicians.

Chara Yadav, Gold Modi’s, Flying Mallaya’s, Share Mehta’s and Parekh’s, Petroleum Ambani’s, Electric Adani’s… Every generation, every corner of the world, they exist. Even Gates (before his charity work) belongs to this cult of greed built on monopoly and unethical practices.

On the other hand, you have poor, homeless immigrants who work hard and build nations. Like the outcast Europeans built US and Australia. Every major city in the world, Mumbai to New York, is built over the hard work of poor immigrants.

They do small, shitty, inhuman jobs, which locals don’t want to do so that locals can work better, more comfortable jobs. They enrich the locals and live in dark, uncertain future for at least one entire generation. Immigrants, anthropologically speaking, are enablers.

No country, no community should have a problem with honest, hardworking immigrants. To put immigrants and terrorists in the same bracket is an apathetic, misleading ploy. And of course, it’s unethical from Human Rights perspective.

Yes, we need a social security system, better law and order to curb miscreants and potential ‘terrorists’. But to assume, that every next door neighbor is out to get us, is not only stupid but also historically wrong.

Accumulation of power only happens by feeding on people’s fear. The face cream industry gains by feeding on the fear of dark skin. Similarly, the fear of ‘others’, thieves, robbers, is deliberately peddled so that you forget about rats of your own home nibbling at your toes.

So, ask a few questions to yourself everyday. Not about the country but about your own life. Where’s the grain for the pizza you eat coming from? Who dyes your designer clothes?

We know little about how the world really functions. So ask: who is benefiting from my actions?

Who am I enabling with this purchase? What ideal am I promoting by casting this vote.
Ask. Ask. Ask.
Ask others.
Ask yourself.
Our society, our city, our nation is a car that needs complete ‘overhaul’ not just a ‘air-water’ check.
Thank you for coming to my #TedTalk.

Life offline and lessons learnt on better online behavior!

Few months back last year, I went in for what a lot of people call ‘digital detox’ these days. This meant going off social media.  No Facebook. No Twitter.  No virtual relationships.My detox was not ‘total’ though. I kept my Instagram feed alive for a few close friends who could follow me and appeared passively on Quora – but in essence it was cutting off my ties with people not known to me in real life. Before I dwell upon what happened during that phase, let me try and give a few reasons for why I did so.


I was one of the first few hundred people in India to have a Facebook profile and a Twitter handle. I caught social media on its upswing. By last year I had four pages on Facebook and my twitter posts were upwards of 5000. Since I didn’t post trivial details of what I ate and how I looked, I was never a compulsive poster. Yet, my interaction with my followers was getting out of hands. Being a minor celebrity, I sometimes had a barrage of questions to answer and posts to react to.  The number one reason I quit was to spend more time with family, my ‘real’ friends and myself. But even selective sharing has its limits. It seemed to me that my life was becoming too‘open’ and my privacy was getting compromised. The other reasons included disillusionment with social media, fear of personal attacks and unnecessary debates. I also was going through a dark and depressing phase (being a writer I should be allowed to, at times) and I didn’t want to share the ugly side of my mind with anyone. Familiarity breeds contempt. Excess breeds boredom. I was‘bored’ of social media. I felt that a few weeks of keeping away from excess information will improve the signal to noise ratio in my head. Of course, I was petrified of losing friends and ‘falling back’ in the race of popularity. But the fear of losing myself was much bigger. When I first announced that I’m going offline, a few friends ‘mourned’ my digital death and urged me to come back as soon as possible.  I also thought at that time that this will only last for a week or two at most, ‘cause how can one live without social media in today’s times? We can conclude safely now that I surprised a few friends and myself.


A lot. What happened in last few months is too much to cover in a single article. But, suffice it to say that I squeezed more juice out of every single day on both personal and professional front. I am in the best shape of my life now – a personal milestone I was pining to achieve ever since I left college.  I feel the youthful energy of my 20’s coming back as I build epic blanket forts with my two sons at home, or as I go on arduous treks and travels.  In a span of just 6 months, I have written and recorded more than 10 songs and two full film scripts, while regularly tending to my prior commitments and taking out time for pursuing poetry that I wasn’t able to in the last 14 years.   Professionally, I couldn’t have asked for more and personally I couldn’t be happier for myself. But also, what happened is not just a dogged pursuit of goals and achievements. What happened was an overhauling of my life towards healthier habits, healthier thinking and a healthier lifestyle. In effect it was a complete re-alignment of mind, body and soul towards a drastic change in my life, focusing on my needs and helping me realize my potential to live a happier life than I was living all these years.What happened really my friends, is nothing short of a rebirth.


As I look back at myself earlier and myself now, countless images of ‘before’ and ‘after’ flashing through my brain, I am more than overwhelmed with a feeling of joy. I want to run out and tell everyone what I have learned, felt and experienced. This is what brings me back to social media. But now I have a purpose. I now have something worth sharing.  So here I go… starting off with a few lessons I learned while I was away… Read them, share them, be blessed, be happy.


1. It is important to have a voice but it is more important to have a vision.

2. Everything personal should not be shared. But everything shared should have something personal.

3. Some people will miss you if you go away but real friends will seek you out. Best friends will seek you out and still let you be.

4. Having an opinion is not a sign of intelligence. It’s just a sign of being opinionated. There’s perfectly good reason why you may not have an opinion about an issue, however pertinent or popular it might be. There’s no reason why you should be forced to form an opinion.

5. Consider the option of saying: ‘I’m not informed well enough to make this choice’ before taking sides in any discussion.

6. Be loyal to ideas when it comes to the well being of humanity and society as a whole, but be loyal to friends if you have to make petty choices.

7. Silence is golden in person. Online, a reaction, however mild and non-committal is expected. Even if you don’t want to say something, take out the time and make the effort to type: ‘I’d rather not say.’ Add a smiley. It always helps. 🙂

8. Social media is addictive because it fulfills all six needs (Google: Six Human Needs -Tony Robbins) at some level or the other. It can be a healthy addiction (like exercise) if you DO NOT depend on it exclusively for all six of these needs.   You must choose which needs you want to satisfy and ignore the others. My choices are Variety, Connection and Contribution. For the other three needs, (Certainty, Significance and Growth) I keep pursuits in real world rather than the virtual one.

9. Trolls degrading you or friends excessively praising you – both – are best left ignored beyond one initial response. It’s like holding a knife from the blade side. It will sever your personality. But if you hold it from the handle it will serve your personality. The handle side is your side. Your opinions, and experiences – that’s what this is for. Not for reacting to others opinions and feelings.

10. Someone has posted something good / impressive and you read it. Fine. It was meant to be that way. The best you can do about it is share with others. Don’t jump in the bandwagon to make it known to the poster that ‘you’ especially were touched by his/her post. Once you react in a personal way to a generic post, the poster comes under the obligation to react to your personal post. You may be meaning well, but this actually dissuades people from posting more content. Let the river flow. Admire it from a distance. It is rude to comment on a generic post just like it is to not reply to a personal message.

Feel free to comment. I check my Facebook feed now, though not frequently.

The Jungle Book – I wanna be like you – Hindi Version

तुझसा बनूँ
(I wanna be like you:Hindi Version)

ऐई इंसान का औलाद,
सुन मेरी बात
माका शेण्डी मत लगा तू
मेरे को माँगता
है ताक़त आग का
वो फूल जिसमें no ख़ुशबू!
मेरे को होना वो secret, बस अब
बोल मैं क्या करूँ?

मिलेगा power
खिलेगा flower
तो मैं तुझसे बनूँ!
Oh, ooo-be-doo,
मैं तेरा माफ़िक़ बनूँ-ऊँ-ऊँ
I चलो-fy like you
बोलो-fy like you oo-oo-oo,

देख बोलता हूँ-ऊँ-ऊँ
मैं बात सच्ची-ई-ई
मैं बन सकता
है, Ditto जैसा तू-ऊ-ऊ

तू सोचेंगा ये क्या कलंदर!
के मैं, एक महाबली बंदर
मिलायेंगा हाथ
वो भी तेरे साथ
गोली देता है बस क्या?

अपन साथ सच करेगा सपना
पूरा जंगल का माल अपना
मेरा जो गरज
वोईच तेरा फरज
मेरा सपना, अपना कर तू

हाँ तू-ऊ-ऊ
मैं तेरा माफ़िक़ बनूँ
माँगता है अंगार
बाकी सब भंगार है थू-ऊ-ऊ

बोले तो झक्कास
हो जायेंगा!
एक बंदर
राजा बन जाएँगा,
इंसान माफ़िक़
मेरा game होयेंगा full-thru!

बस एक item आती
तो फिर life set हो जाती
जा ले आ वो रक्त-फूल
फिर जंगल पे अपनाईच rule
मेरा under तू
आजा man! तेरा life मैं
Set कर दूँ!

#Lyrics #MayurPuri #TujhsaBanoo #Iwannabelikeyou #TheJungleBookHindi #RobertBSherman #RichardMSherman

Become you
(I wanna be like you:Hindi Version)

The Son of a human being,
Listen my talk
Maka Śēṇḍī don’t think you
Asking for me
The strength of the fire
The flowers in which no smell!
That Secret to me, just now
Tell me what should I do?

Will get power
Will bloom flower
So I will be with you!
Oh, ooo-be-doo,
I will be your friend-OM-OM
I चलो-fy like you
Say-fy like you oo-OO-oo,

I see-OM-OM
I talk true-E-e
I can become
Is, ditto like you-Ugh-ugh

You will think what is this qalandar!
K me, a great monkey
Will meet hands
That too with you
Shoots just what?

Dream will come true with you
The Whole Jungle’s wealth
My Joe Thunder
Wow it’s your duty
My dream, do your own

Yes you-Ugh-ugh
I will be your māfiqa
Asks for embers
Everything else is bhangar. Thu-Ugh-ugh

Bole to fantastic
Will be done!
A monkey
Will become king,
Human being
My game will be full-Thank!

Just a item comes
Then life would have been set
Go to those blood flowers
Then the rules on the jungle
My cornering you
Come on man! Your life I
Set it up!

#Lyrics #MayurPuri #TujhsaBanoo #Iwannabelikeyou #TheJungleBookHindi #RobertBSherman #RichardMSherman