Farewell Sir

73 Comments

If Sachin was the teacher’s pet marked for greatness ever since he joined the school, Ganguly the arrogant gang-leader of the cool kids and VVS Laxman the freakishly-talented loner in the corner, Rahul Dravid will always be the hair-cleanly-parted, diligent “good boy”, the one who studies every waking hour to get the best grade.

The perfect student.

Not for him the arrogance of knowledge. Nor the satisfaction of absolute success. Dravid was always learning, and as one of the  first ads he shot for so prophetically said, “always practicing”.

Not naturally aggressive in his batting, one of his most inspirational achievements was how he developed his limited-overs technique to retire with a record as good as the best. And even while batting in Test matches, an art he had mastered better than any of his contemporaries, you could see him continually changing, adapting, fine-tuning his game, often shaking his head in disappointment even after a perfect cover-drive. It is this relentless, almost religious, pursuit of perfection that will be remembered the most about him.

As also the precise movement of feet, the opening of the stance to counter the swing, the pivot of the heel, the last-minute leave, the perfect balance of the body at the moment of impact, the stillness of head. The man was as close to an anthropomorphism of a Swiss watch one could get, not just in its engineering precision, but in its total reliability. Session after session, like gears of platinum, he would grind out the opposition, his almost absolute invulnerability sapping them of  all hope .

Time could stop. But not Dravid.

The other guy would trudge to the pavilion. Not Dravid.

He would be at the other end. Always.

However even “always” ends. It has to.

The bails are removed. Shadows creep over the pitch. The reassuring presence at number 3 takes his last walk.

Memories crowd around. Calcutta. Adelaide. Lords. Georgetown. Headingley. Rawalpindi. Now they are all a blur–one glorious image giving way to another in  rapid sequence. The flick. The square-drive. That back-lift. The studious expression. The self-effacing smile. The punch in the air.

And that silently smoldering hunger—– the hunger to be the best one can possibly be.

We will miss you sir.

 

73 thoughts on “Farewell Sir

  1. Brilliant thoughts on one of Indian cricket’s greatest servants. Rahul was a once in a generation cricketer. He will be sorely missed. A big loss to an already floundering team!

  2. He is a man who did right thing in right manner in right time. Becasue of player like dravid cricket is known as gentleman’s game. Becasue of player like dravid cricket is known as a team game. Becasue of player like dravid i love cricket. Every era there wer a champion. One goes another come but there are some champion with whom you have imotional attachment. Who are irriperseble. Dravid is one such player for me. Nothing sums hi better then Rahul bose’s this tweet “Rahul Dravid reflects an india that is honourable, ethical. hardworking and thoughtful.”

    The wall- Take a bow !

  3. The greatest example of sincerity, dedication and humility has called it a day. Dravid for me was the best example to emulate for all aspects of life in general. Salute to the unsung hero of Indian cricket – a patriot to the core.

  4. The South has given India 4 highly educated, self-effacing, gentleman cricketers of the highest quality. First was Javagal Srinath…an engineer from Mysore who was probably the only decent fast bowler India has ever produced. Then was the brilliant, sophisticated Anil Kumble – who played cricket as if solving a discrete mathematics problem in his mechanical engineering class from one of the best private engineering colleges in the country (RVCE,Bangalore). Then was Jammy – highly articulate speaker, voracious reader, a perfect gentleman – who did everything in his life to total perfection, including the sport he played. The only one left is the freaky genius, Mr.Laxman – son of surgeons who would have been a surgeon himself, had it not been for the way he wields the cricket bat.

    I was for some peculiar reason never a fan of either Tendulkar or Ganguly. I pretended to like them, admire them – but just couldn’t. It was always these 4 gentlemen from South India that I identified myself with. I liked Dhoni when he first started playing – but then over the last year, since the England tour, I, like most Indian fans, am done with him and his insurmountable greed for money.

    3 of my childhood heroes are gone. After Mr.Laxman leaves, I am done with cricket. I cannot identify myself with the likes of Kohli, Raina and others of the IPL generation – maybe because they are younger than me, almost belong to a different generation and a different set of values, and rather loutish in behaviour, not too educated, too selfish, greedy etc.

  5. The wall is gone, yet he can never be gone for me. That Kolkata morning and afternoon, when he with Laxman surgically dissected the Aussies, he walked permanently into my heart and head.

    Well written Arnab, almost like Dravid:) Neat, clean and to the point

  6. Rahul Dravid’s greatest achievement has been declaring the innings when Sachin (Oh Lord!) was on 194. That’s how badly he wanted to WIN the game always. That’s my most enduring memory of Rahul Dravid. When we talk of Dravid, inevitably Sachin is mentioned – they are like Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer’s). Once upon a time circa 1996 he really was GOD. He unfortunately became a mere mortal and worse since 1999. Dravid never became God but always tried his best till his last backlift and that strikes me as godliness.Proud of you Rahul Dravid.

  7. Maybe I am feeling much right now but I fear for the day when India plays its next test and loses first wicket..a habit of 16 years will have realize its death then….

  8. Awesome Sir! Take a bow!! Reminds me of those Cricket Writers who were not mere Journalists, but could write poetry on Cricket. A fitting farewell to an exemplary cricketer.
    Now that Ganguly & Dravid have been persuaded to call it quits, what’s stopping Chacha Choudhury? May be, the endorsement commitments!

  9. Ranger saab, why South-North or East-West divide has to creep up everywhere? Isn’t it enough that all of these cricketers donned the India colors?
    And sir, as you have called Javagal Srinath, “probably the only decent fast bowler India has ever produced”, I can’t even find an excuse to talk about Cricket with you!

  10. “Ganguly the arrogant gang-leader of the cool kids”- The first, and probably the last, Bong who will be described as such. :D

    Agree with your sentiments, Dravid is truly among the best ever.

  11. Also, I hope that the comments arn’t along the lines of ‘Dravid is better than Sachin’. For once, lets acknowledge that the great man deserves to be appreciated without being compared to a benchmark of success.

  12. Shovon… nothing to do with North-West-East-South divide. Its just that the 4 South Indian cricketers I mentioned have been exceptional and worthy of admiration. And whats wrong with my statement that Javagal Srinath was the only decent fast bowler India has produced ? Can you name anybody else ?

    No, Kapil Dev was not really a fast bowler. He was just a medium paced swing bowler.

    Zaheer was somewhat quick in his early days, but later developed into a highly effective fast-medium bowler rather than a genuine quick bowler.

    Srinath was the only bowler who played for India and bowled genuinely quick.

    I know some of you Bengalis dont like Srinath because he said a few things against your hero Ganguly, but for us, Srinath was a real hero. You should have seen the way Chinnaswamy stadium reacted everytime Srinath rushed in to bowl. I was there. It was a most amazing feeling.

  13. Well played sir, you would be missed. Thanks for all the memories.

    Its a pity that a lot of so called “fans” of this ultimate team man are most parochial and narrow minded people you would ever see.

  14. Just to add :

    Srinath was the only bowler who played for India and bowled genuinely quick – throughout his career, which lasted for 10 years. But Srinath never compromised on his pace. He quit when he realized he could not bowl at his usual pace rather than play for 5 more years as just a medium pacer – which he could have done.

    I am just sad that in India only batsmen get all the attention. Bowlers – especially fast bowlers, belong to the proverbial lowest caste in the Indian cricket fan’s caste system. Today its only in Karnataka that Srinath is still remembered. I remember a tweet long time back when even Arnab mocked Srinath as being unworthy of talking about Ganguly (if you remember Srinath criticized Ganguly a year or so back)…

    …There have been many batsmen in India like Ganguly… how many Srinaths have we had ?

  15. “one of the best private engineering colleges in the country (RVCE,Bangalore).”

    The important thing GB forgot to mention in his post. GB please take note.

  16. Ranger,

    Agarkar, not from “South India”, also never reduced his speed. I see you have made no note of Srinath’s hapless underhanded fielding and his brain-fart in the 2003 finals. This of course can be excused because he is “South Indian”. Kishor should meet Ranger and make nice South Indian babies.

  17. I honestly said what I felt. If some of you dont like what I said, no problem… but no need to make personal attacks.

  18. Dravid shall always be missed.
    GB, is post part 2 on Dravid on way? perhaps more detailed and of similar high quality. This post was too short for career spanning 16 years playing for India.

  19. Actually in 2003 final, north Indians Zaheer Khan and Ashish Nehra started very badly and gave lot of runs. Otherwise India would have won that cup.

  20. Great write up and analogy on the wall. But what Dhoni fan says sums it up best, ‘when India being one down in next test’ that was a real touch of sublime class.

    No North South affair here but I guess Ranger is right when he said Srinath never compromised on his pace. We all know what Kapil did and what Munaf is trying to do. Others were never pace bowlers anyway.

    Thanks Dravid!

  21. Pingback: Rahul Dravid retires « Aao Twist Karein!

  22. We in the age group of 35-40 have had the pleasure of watching cricketers such as Kapil, Gavaskar, Srikkanth, amarnath, azhar in our formative years and then there were Sachin, sourav, rahul, kumble, sehwag (sorry but I dont find anything legendary about Laxman). I can safely say that it was an honour to have watched Rahul Sharad Dravid play. period. what a gentleman. what poise and polish. the man will be remembered as a legend for not only how he conducted himself on the field but also off the field. a rolemodel for youngsters around the world and a legend forever.

  23. I don’t know why people are going gaga over this post. There have been many writings on this blog that were better. A true legend like Dravid deserved a much better write up.

  24. Ranger-

    “3 of my childhood heroes are gone. After Mr.Laxman leaves, I am done with cricket. I cannot identify myself with the likes of Kohli, Raina and others of the IPL generation – maybe because they are younger than me, almost belong to a different generation and a different set of values, and rather loutish in behaviour, not too educated, too selfish, greedy etc.”

    If you do not not like someone like Virat Kohli because he swears more than the 4 decent Southie boys, I have nothing to say!

    GB- Amidst all this I cannot help think about the 2005-2005 days when Dravid did get create a nexus with GC Chappell and Cricinfo. It could be that the nice guy he was, he was manipulated into it. Cricinfo benefited from his access and you had exposed them in as brilliant a piece of investigative journalism since Watergate. That is the only blemish in Dravid’s career- his inability to be assertive. His character is to serve from behind. He is uncomfortable being in the limelight and more a “Ah there you are”, rather than a “Hey here I am” type person when he enters a party room. Greg Chappell understood that this was the perfect person for him to assert his total control on Indian cricket in his heydays in 2007, when he read Sun Tsu to turban wearing servants who did foot refloxogy on him in the Taj Hotel, after a lavish 5 course meal paid by the BCCI. Rahul Dravid was Chappell’s puppet captain in the same way Man Singh is Sonia Ghandi’s puppet. But to his credit, he relinquished his captaincy at the right time, thereby elongating his career span.

    Wonder what you and your readers think of these Chappell comments below. There is an element of truth to it, as is the unmistakeable inability of a white man of yesteryear’s to come to grips with the modern world.

    ——

    Chappell then spoke about what was wrong with the Indian culture. “The culture is very different, it’s not a team culture,” Chappell said. “They lack leaders in the team because they are not trained to be leaders. From an early age, their parents make all the decisions, their schoolteachers make their decisions, their cricket coaches make the decisions.

    “The culture of India is such that, if you put your head above the parapet someone will shoot it. Knock your head off. So they learn to keep their head down and not take responsibility. The Poms (British) taught them really well to keep their head down. For if someone was deemed to be responsible, they’d get punished. So the Indians have learned to avoid responsibility. So before taking responsibility for any decisions, they prefer not to.”

  25. Rahul Dravid will be counted amongst top 5 cricketers India has ever produced. RD was not only cricketing idol but also idol for many of the young people like me in the life.. He has been always in shadow of SRT otherwise he would have been top cricketer from India. He has always shown us the lesson that there is not short cut for success.
    My salute for this great cricketer and great man!

  26. @Dhoni fan boy- Thanks mate! Main bhi bhakt hun apka guru ka. Lekin shayad abhi Test captani chodna chahiye unko.

  27. If I ever meet Rahul Dravid- I will ask him how he remained focused, not at the crease- but at hotel rooms with the thump-thump-thump doggy style sound emanating from adjacent rooms. In his prime, he could marry any supermodel/actress in India. He could have gone to night clubs and like Shane Warne, put his hand under the skirts of innumerable sluts and then brought them back to the hotel room. Instead he read books by his motel room 60 Watt bedside lamp oblivious to the thump thump sound. In the next room- it could have been anybody- ganguly, bal, azhar, jadeja, Shastri, bhajji, sachin, viru, kohli, raina, rohit sharma, lalit modi, ipl cheerleaders, mallya sr jr, srk kjo, pzinta-blee-yuvi— anyone, anyone except VVS. This was his biggest sacrifice- denying himself the lures of ‘vices’ of gambling, sex, match-fixing and drugs. They say Gandhi did too- which I strongly suspect- and in any case, it was a political stunt. Dravid’s was sincere and unaffected. Sacrifice and denial on the cricket ground are a mere fraction in comparison to that.

  28. @yourfan2..nice to know that mate. I agree with you. we need to look out his replacement in tests, not only captaincy.

  29. Here is an article by his wife.. http://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/556979.html
    The best compliment and we can’t agree anymore “I can say that he was able to get the absolute maximum out of his abilities as an international cricketer”.
    @yourfan2 – To give credit the likes of Shane Warne are different species. Its a different skill and strength to perform what he did in the field irrespective of what he performed the night before or the state of his personal life. Its not everyone’s cup of tea as many other cricketers u mentioned would agree. I would have rated Tiger Woods in same league if only he had managed to maintain his on field record after his adventures became public.

  30. “In the next room- it could have been anybody- ganguly, bal, azhar, jadeja,”

    @yourfan2 .. please don’t mind but can you tell me who player’s name is “bal”. I don’t remember any player having that name.

  31. Theres is nothing more asinine than taking a dump on the current crop of players and calling them names to validate the greatness of Dravid and others.
    But in the last decade has brought us two of the greatest trimphs in Indian Cricket history. The T20 World Cup…and the One Day World Cup. Both by Dhoni and his current crop of players ( And SRT of course!).
    The players like Srinath, Dravid, Kumble, Laxman are great!..But none figures in both the victories. So Lets not get our panties in a bunch…salute the champion who is walking out…and welcome the one stepping into his shoes (Kohli…who is defeinitely capable of taking over the mantle of No.3).

  32. BTW…I must tip my hat to Srinath here….guy who was overlooked for two aging pacers while he was bowling his best and fastest….
    And the reason those two gentlemen were picked ahead of him??
    Well…one was OPENING THE INNINGS!….And the other was chasing a personal milestone…..BCCI rules!!!!..:)))

  33. This is what every human being on the planet should have: very well put, and perfectly epitomizes dravid.

    And that silently smoldering hunger—– the hunger to be the best one can possibly be.

  34. @Dip – Its more like what culture one grew up with. Dravid probably cared more about what people would think or what legacy he would leave behind. Or it could be his internal set of ethics. Warne etc were never told in grade 3 that kissing a girl was wrong.

    @Soumen- If you have seen great movie Gunda, you would know the character of Bulla. Greg Chappell played a read life Bulla when he told Ganguly in 2005, “Main tumhara career khatam karengeeeeeeeeeeeee.” Bulla had his accomplices. There was chutiya, abu hatela etc. Bal is something like that. Somewhat like a Lucky Chikna, with a brothel of poison pens. But you are right, he is not a cricketer.

  35. The run churning and patience manufacturing human factory is closed now. All that will remain are memories that will linger forever in the minds of this entire cricket frenzy nation and other cricket lovers. Coming to senses with the retirement of a legend is definitely a hard one, as I found it yesterday, when the official news broke out.

    So the focus now after some sobbing and ohs and ahs would shift to the youngster who would be bestowed with the challenge to almost open the innings when Shewag, who as often will decide to club the blowers too early and give away his wicket.

    Ain’t easy to replace the wall but laying the bricks for a stronger no.3 is definitely on the cards. So good luck to team India without the wall.

  36. Ordinary blog.. boring…collection of cliches actually. There is nothing here which has not been said for 15 years about Dravid. Can’t understand why do you have to write something for the sake of just writing a blog especially when you have nothing new to share. On top of that you criticize Chetan Bhagat. Its cheap man

  37. @Tejas- There is a search button on top of this blog. Just type cricinfo and go back. Pages 7-12, I Think. Umpteen examples, like this one — http://greatbong.net/page/11/?s=cricinfo — The Sinister Cabal And The Batting Virus . Plus I, GB, Shan and many others had clinically exposed Cricinfo’s sick agenda during 2005-06 across many, many comments littered across many posts on this blog. At times, the level of discourse between pro-Chappell and anti-Chappell commentators on this blogs reached that of the Frost-Nixon interviews. If you search you can find them. Those guys (Cricinfo) used to laugh at Ganguly’s bengali journo friends. Ha ha. Anyway the point being, it was not ethical journalism and the rot started from the top. Life is a great leveler.[edited] They are not welcome by the BCCI. :)Out of guilty feelings, Anand Vasu, ex-cricinfo once interviewed Ganguly in Australia and inadvertently confessed about the bile and the covert agenda. The Dravid-Chappell-Cricinfo nexus, as any cricket history student will tell you. is well-known; it had its heydays in late 05 and 06 before collapsing after the 2007 World Cup.[edited]

  38. @yourfan2…so u,GB and whoever u named qualify for blindly pro-dada and blindly anti MSD/anti RD brigade?

  39. “Kishor should meet Ranger and make nice South Indian babies.” …)))) priceless
    hey maybe kishor is ranger …sort of dual personality

  40. Yaar Shouri, you and your hero Ganguly should get together and produce nice Bengali babies that look just like Mamta Banerjee.. that would be even more priceless.

  41. Rahul Dravid, the most innocent and gentleman sportsman Cricket ever had ! He never was part of any fights, a complete professional, articulate speaker last but not the least amazing Cricketer, he will surely be missed by Indian (global) fans, I wish him all the best for his next phase of life….God bless…..

  42. I firmly believe that given the divisive, heterogeneous country India is, it is impossible for any captain to remain unbiased after a certain time. Then he is more a political figure and less a captain. The cricket culture, just like the work culture has its own nastiness. The British gave us the ideas of Sir, senior-junior complexes. The worst part of this culture is the unwritten code that if you are a senior player who has done things in the past, you are never dropped on form. You are allowed to return to form.

    When Ganguly was dropped in 2005, he deserved to be dropped. He was a great captain, an outstanding tactician who changed a lot in Indian cricket. The most important thing was attitude. Before Ganguly, as long as you won at home, you were forgiven for losing 4-0, 5-0 or 3-0 outside. Fans will recall Jaywant lele in 99 foretelling that we will lose 3-0 in Australia. He also invested in youth, disembarked the British style rigidity that used to permeate the cricket culture. He may not have been a good fielder, but fielding definitely went up during his tenure. And there was a strong nurturing of match-winning bowlers like Zak or H Singh. he also encouraged seamers. Ganguly was the first captain who played 3 seamers that regularly. He could look at the opposition eye to eye, and could play the Steve Waugh type mind games.

    It also needs to be said that while bouncy pitches and pitches which help bowlers more are great, the way to implement them is not in a Test series, but in domestic cricket, where cricketers hone their skills. So Ganguly’s criticism of the Nagpur pitch was quite valid. If you look at the wickets that Australia produced in all 4 Tests, they all had a little bit of extra live grass. They did not give India a wicket like Kanpur, did they? The point is, when you have that kind of politics in Indian cricket, it is NATURAL for people to form clusters and involve in heavy politics. Slowly, some of Ganguly’s proteges became his lackeys, like Harbhajan Singh. There was a period of time when Anil KUmble was unfairly left out. Kumble, being the great sportsman that he is, took it graciously. But you could tell after a while that whatever innovation Ganguly as captain could do, has been done. There were a lot of players who got into that comfort zone, where you will not be dropped until you play so bad that you force selectors to drop you, or unless you are injured.

    But Chappell’s wrath against Ganguly was more than that meets the eye- it was more than a coach doing things with efficiency as sole aim. It was done with the precise same comfort zone that the culture offered as aim. With Ganguly out of the way, all Chappell had was the meek Dravid. Often beautiful girls go clubbing with girls who are uglier than they are. This gives them all the attention and spotlight. Chappell got all the spotlight with the self-effacing and shy Dravid around. Dravid sure could make the decisions as captain, but then captaincy is as much about making decisions as a pizza is a pie. There is more to it, just like the pizza toppings. Dravid never had the X factor which could make people rally. He could inspire, but never command. Just like Sonai Ghandhi, GC was pulling the strings here.

    An example of Dravid not being captaincy material was demonstrated the past summer when he ‘diffused’ the row about the Ian Bell run-out. That, according to Dravid, was the right thing to do. Sure he got all the applause, but this attitude reeked of cowardice. If Virat Kohli was the captain, he would have never done that. Suffice it say that Dravid was not leadership material. He was the master mechanical enginner of BMW, someone he was uncomfortable in the shoes of a CEO. It distracted him. He wore it as badly as a woman with very fat legs wears a short miniskirt. It was the same with Sachin Tendulkar too.

    Mahendra Singh Dhoni was the best thing to happen to Indian cricket after that. He gave us the 2 world cups and laid the foundation for the next generation. His cool and calm attitude were exemplary. But I am sad to say this, but Dhoni is a changed man now. Nonchalance, which is so admirable under pressure, reeks of arrogance, when you having defeat after defeat. Defeats in the past season do not perturb me by themselves. The way we went down again and again, and the fact that no changes were made/tried riles me. He is in his own comfort zone now, with his own set of lackeys. It doesnt take half a brain to know who they are- Suresh Raina, R Jadeja, Vinay Kumar and a few others. Coming from political Bihar, Dhoni knows a lot about politics. Especially how to play politics in India. His godfather is now the strongest man in the BCCI. The most befuddling of statements Srinivasan gave after Australia series was that this 4-0 result is normal. It was not!!! Not against this Australia. Even Australian journalists expected a string show from India. Initially, I had thought that reports of friction within the dressing room were Aussie media bs. Now it is very clear that Virender Sehwag had long nursed a desire to be captain, and there are faction and camps within the team. In such a political scenario, Dhoni knows how to play his cards. He knows his godfather will never admonish him. He zealously protects his inner circle who worship him like God. If the selectors select players who are a threat to his inner circle, he will simply not play them in the 11. It is not fair. He remains a great player and captain in shorter formats, where situations often dictate strategies, but his lack of imagination in Tests, and his lackadaisical batting was so very stark. A lot of things will be camouflaged in the next 2 years as India play mostly at home. Raina will continue to hit sixes and Ashwin will threaten. But where is the desire to take that extra step forward- to conquer new lands? Even Dravid won us in England in 07. So the point I am reinforcing is, Dhoni has passed his sell-by-date as captain. He can still function, but he has his own habits and preferences which are hard to change. He seems to be a captain who is happy if India wins at home. He has spoken about the 2015 World Cup. That one is gonna be on Aussie wickets- wickets on which ‘allrounders’ like Ravindra Jadeja will be rendered as neither a batsman, nor an effective bowler.

    The board meanwhile is consumed by the cash cow- the IPL, as are Dhoni and most of the players. Desiring IPL money is not a sin, but management, selectors and the captain could have still ensured that Test cricket flourishes. Players ensconsed in comfort zones will never improve, I can tell you that. But what about the hungry young players who want to play Tests and make great careers. Yes, there are players like that, just like there are players like Siddharth Tiwari in IPL. Tiwari is an IPL player. You can say with your eyes closed that on wickets in Australia, South Africa, West Indies or England, he will be an abysmal failure. So the need to segment players and nurture them is required. Who will do that? The internecine politics has created self-reinforcing comfort zones. Srinivasan needs Dhoni for Chennai super kings. Dhoni needs Srinivasan for his comfort zone and ‘vrastachar’.

    I feel that Virat Kohli needs to be made the Test captain of India. But will our insipid board be willing to take courageous reforms like great captain Imran Khan used to do wrt selection and ejection? I am not very optimistic about that. My only hope is the even worse politics ridden cricket culture in the 90s has given us players like Sachin, Dravid, Kumble and Ganguly. So hopefully, men of the hour will emerge, by accident, if not by design.

  43. Yourfan – that was a brilliant piece, something Arnab would be proud of. Guess years of being Arnab’s #1 fan has done something positive after all :)

    Anyway, I totally agree with you. I can also see parallels between our cricket team captain and our prime minister. Both started off brilliantly – Manmohan Singh changed India completely by introducing economic reforms in 1991. He was the biggest hero of the Indian middle class. But today, Singh is a lameduck prime minister. Instead of delivering on economic reforms and furthering liberalization, he is just about trying to survive in his chair by pandering to the worst statist and socialist proclivities of his boss Sonia Gandhi and her jholawallah gang at the NAC. He knows what he is doing is wrong, he knows he is ending the so-called “India story” by taking India back to the worst days of 1970s license-control-quata Raj, he knows he is damaging his own legacy, he knows he will henceforth be known as the man who put an end to the hopes of India being a superpower rather than one who gave such ambitions birth in the first place.

    But like a typical bureaucrat, he does not care. He only wants to stay in his job. Nation be damned.

    And by the way, if today’s budget does not put an end to our foolish hopes of becoming a “superpower”, I will be surprised. Today’s budget was an acknowledgement by the government that it does not care about what the current economic situation is, it will just go about its merry ways, transferring productive money to non-productive causes, robbing Peter to pay Paul… and since in India there are lot more Pauls who vote than Peters, it will win every forseeable election, thus guaranteeing power for the next 5-6 generations of Gandhi-Maino dynasty. Meanwhile the nation called India will turn into a large scale version of Somalia – but really, who cares ?

  44. Can anyone come up with a video of the ‘Always practising’ ad that Arnab has mentioned here? I searched and searched, to no avail! :(

  45. That was a superb tribute to one of the greatest names in the game. Would have really loved to see Rahul retire on a high rather than after something like the Australia series… it was just not meant to happen that way, so be it.
    Salute to the Wall.

  46. Boys! Kapil was not a genuine fast bowler! and Srinath was!!
    Pl donot write such non sense. Kapil in his younger age was genuinely fast and faster than Srinath in his youth.

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