Sunday, August 27, 2006

25th aug,2006
" Education is what remains when you have fogotton all that you had learnt"

the past few days have seen me at the peak of my anguish against certain issues,things and people. shouting ,protesting,howling-i did this all to prove my point. i wantes to make a statement but ended up making arguments. or was made to sound like that. actauly i wanted , first, to be heard, then, thought , and then, be argued. but simply got argued on. and by another rudimenart underexposed vestige of indian mind, less desirous of accepting change and staunch in his inherited value system-- that obedient son of his father! he clearly seemed to have mugged up al his knowledge to reach his stations-- hardly showed any understanding of the great altruist conceptswe got from our books of international maritime legislation composed mostly by the westeners. the indians, esp this pal of mine,my namesake, believs that those laws are impractical in reality! and why not must he think so!?where have we seen such greatness of philosophy, the altruism, in action in our real life.
actually, the laws we read SOLAS, STCW, ISM, Code of Safe Working practices for Merchant Seamen, and many more, in general are based on principles of humanity. Basic laws like proper rest hours, healt working condition also had to written down to avoid controversies regarding them. in India, unlike the UK, they couldn't have been taken as the unwritten-- the Common Law.
i guess it was known to the west that people can be inhuman as well and particularly those from the other hemisphere. what other classic explanation can we have to understand indians 'impracticable' viewpoint for the period of rest hour! My other pal from the SCI who has now migrated to Shell (the oil giant),top-managed mostly by the British, tells me of the easy life he lives over there--relaxed and comfortable. tasks,to us, appear to be exacting at first thought itself and create huge revulsions.drydocking in my comapny is a severe ailment to me.
then why at all do we say 'yes' to such 'impractical' legislation at international forums??the top managers of ours, the govt surveyors and the DG shipping, and the shipowners admit their implementation while the lower rung, the ship masters and other staff, in the closet, express doubt in them!?why this collective hypocritcal behaviour of us?! the STCW, infact, at one point makes it binding upon world governments to make college cirriculum for mariners as close to what we get in real. then why do we fail to do so. why can't we just dispel such legislation in the making itself rather than in a closed room.
Think correcting of magnetic compass for deviational errors binding upon we sailors. although we are taught the theory of this, but are we really given any hands-on training on them then does ISM code make provision for its continuous traning, considering our human factor of forgetfullness. do we carry any instruments required for the task on board as mandatory?No; none. Then why were we taught all this??
i think thats where our confusion arises. the unawakened pal, in his quest to find meaning of his subjects ends up surmising that all things are meant to be executed!, for management and decision-making as a subject appears to be unknown to him. the purpose of learing this in theory, to me, appears tobe purely for reasons of critical decision-making.however the argument fron the line of thinking of STCW legislation of making subject close to practicability raises many debates in our unaware, under-developed-now-but-developing-always minds. we first first needto be told that not all material is suppose to be executed as it is,but for the purpose of knowing only;for the incidence of critical decision-making.
When are we going to incorporate thinking also in our gand process of learning.when are we designate 'memorising' to its proper place and when are we going to 'think' 'observing' in our 'learning' ?

Thursday, August 17, 2006

On exodus from the SCI

On Exodus from The SCI
To start with, I feel deeply dejected at the way people have expressed the propriety of their exodus from SCI. most of the people have been negligent of their moral obligation towards a company which has given launch pads to their careers. The fleeing was something like kicking away your mother or your nation by putting the blame on numerous faults in them. We know there exist many, both in our nation and in our parent generation, but does that justify our fleeing as proprietary? And like the parents take satisfaction in their children’s worldly ventures so does the SCI not shackle or chase anyone for leaving it. In fact it takes pride in seeing ‘ex-SCI’ people heading or commanding other big companies or their ships.
Like ever dutiful son, every such enterpriser has the moral responsibility to explain the causes of leaving the parent company with all sincerity. Reasons could be any, from poor money to unacceptable treatment to bad work environment, but it should be honestly and warmly expressed.
Callous attitude, poor communication skills, poor vocabulary, PR skills( like raraghvan’s case) have rather spread a hatred feeling for the company than evoking a sympathetic emotion towards such quitters of challenging conditions.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

My Depraved land
It is not mere coincidence that one of the most fertile soils on the planet, the Indo-Gangetic Plains, has become abode of the most atrocious criminals; the fertile soil does not yield as much crop to feed its own inhabitants; religion’s predominance has pushed science-driven development and modernization centuries behind; education not fir enough to get good employment to its enormous population even while the rest of India starves for quality manpower; and then , of course, the over-population, driving all its natural resources from fertile soil to clean rivers to the verge of destruction. The fertility of soil becoming the cause of its own destruction—so I would call it Self-destruction.
Among all causes of its depredation, I maintain, that religion’s predominance is the biggest. This soil hold foundations of many a religious structures of world fame from Ram Janambhumi to Kashi Vishwanath temple to Gaya , Sarnath and many more. That is where people’s mindset becomes to staunch in archaic practices to adopt or accept modernity. Astonishingly they rather attempt to justify archaic views through modern vision almost saying ‘see our ancestors already knew it’. The education system is also of the similar nature as to thrust traditionalism into younger minds. I have personal experiences of growing in such an atmosphere until I broke the shackles to have an un-skewed view of the big world. Earlier we would maintain that the western culture is polluting ours. Today I stand in open support of living-in relationships and see that whole lot of Indians –other than those from my native soil, humorously called ‘the fartherest east’—do it.
The mobile, phones, the computers, the cars, the cable television, everything has changed my perceptions of the west. ‘Changed’ because the previous thoughts, those imbibed from my parents in particular, and then also from my friends and neighbourhood also depicted it as a licentious, free-sex culture. During our adolescent years, we would covertly cry for having born in the west—because, otherwise, we would have ‘made-out’ by then. We were filled with thoughts of self-importance, self proclamation and saw the world’s scientific development as gift of unknown Indians. This was because so many Indians had migrated to the west and were holding strong positions in their development infrastructure.
The recent view I have on this has shed those misconceptions with an opinion that Indians are simply the cheap manpower providers to the world. What Bihar is to India, India is to the World. Cheap quality, extremely under qualified labour fit enough only to dig trenches on the road- or make software for their Banks and navigate their big ships. The rules and regulation, the management is still controlled by them. How wrong was my environment is giving me those false pictures, wonder I. Do my siblings and my cousins know this bitter truth even now. My closest relatives, who are deep into the politics, make this unaware world of ours more chaotic by their anti-west rhetorics. Not surprising that I note that the political juggernaut having allegiance of my people stands alongside the Left’s on most issues. It’s a universal fact that my people abound my land. So that’s how the evil starts—there puritanical behaviour makes them a natural rival of the western culture. How on earth, then, can we expect them to accept modern education which is entirely based on western philosophy—it explains our huge population and its massive unemployment; explains the seeds of terrorism germinating deep in my soil; explains criminality finding its roots in there, for our laws and democratic principles also have their origin largely from the west.
In short, to me it seems to be a war of civilizations the east versus the west. And Islam being the most staunch and provincial in its thinking leads the legion. ‘Other backwards’ concur with their beliefs—it explains ‘UP CM’s clean chit to SIMI’; and then probable undercover explanation of opposition of Indo-US Nuclear deal. UK PM Tony Blair has recently said it all in his recent comments on Islamic Terrorism.
Lest the forward class of Indians may think themselves standing apart from this, I must mention that this is our general psychology, plainly discussed in current literatures as Being Indian, the Great Indian Middle Class, etc. Theirs varies only in staunchness from the hardliners. We all are birds of same feather- some more dark than others.

Friday, August 11, 2006

the dizzy reporting system...Entry for August 09, 2006

This one is about highly unorganized vsl reporting systems we have in place which suffices probably no purpose. All vessels transiting Indian EEZ and Indian SRR are urged to send an INDSAR and INSPIRES report. Additionally all Indian flag vessels have to compulsorily send INSPIRES. In first place its amazing to find that the to different systems have not been integrated into one despite all advancements in the IT technology and computeronics and when India boasts of itself as an IT giant in world software developer’s market.
Then, even with sending of the two reports the tracking of vessels through our region seems to be poor as we frequently some across Indian Naval ships completely unaware of our position and intentions.
Further, as is ‘natural’ with Indian culture, we are brought up with a highly boastful, jingoistic attitude in which we even give up basic courtesy of talking to any foreigner whosoever, often naval officer with such a behavior do not even hesitate in sending calls to master of merchant vessels in the midst of night to obtain vessel info from them.
In the month of February this year I heard one such naval ship calling another ship, the latter equipped with an AIS and all other modern communication equipment clearly legible on my equipment, being raised as “unknown vessel in position….”. I was shocked to hear suchan address in the era of compulsory AIS onboard all merchant ships. Then, it was about 12 o’ clock midnight, the caller (Indian naval ship) sounded angry and discourteous for not getting a reply. When the reply was finally made, the respondent sounded more annoyed for- first, not being called out by proper noun; then, getting disturbed in his peaceful watch even after sending all the sea passages reports and still being inquired for the all over again on VHF (he may have been unwilling to share such info on an open platform in this intense security regime); and lastly, for not being given his due—the respect.
It was a Japanese merchant vessel with a Japanese OOW, who are definitely as courteous and committed sailors as any other. Hence I found such a behaviour towards him as highly deplorable