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Showing posts from October, 2013

A few things that I learnt from Chennai Express

For the uninitiated, Chennai Express is a recent hit movie starring Shah Rukh Khan, directed by Rohit Shetty.  Having spent a torturous time over the last few nights watching the recorded movie, I have put together some "lessons learnt".

1. Girls from Chennai who are based in Mumbai talk in accented Tamil.  (This is similar to many Indians, who switch to a peculiar accent when talking to foreigners)
2. Chennai is pretty much a village (at least from what I could make out of the movie).   I am not surprised here. My Mumbai cousins used to tell their friends "hum gaav ja rahe hain" (we are going to our village), when they used to visit us in Cochin.
3. Ladies in Chennai wear only six or nine-yard sarees.
4. Chennai folks have a tradition where the newly married bridegroom carries the bridge to a temple situated on top of a hill ascended by 300 or so steps.
5. Chennai folks do not go by Mangalsutra to determine if a woman is married.  It is the "maang mein sindo…

Notice for responding to Rectification Proposal

If you received an email with the same subject line as this blog post from Income Tax department, then like me, chances are that, you will be worried.

This extremely legal sounding request was backed by an encrypted attachment, which had equally legal sounding lines starting with "Notice under Section 154 of the Income Tax, 1961".

The Order passed under Sec 143(1) dated dd/mm/2013 in your case is required to be amended as there is a mistake apparent from the records within the meaning of section 154/155 of the Income Tax Act, 1961. The rectification of the mistake, as per details given below will have the effect of enhancing the assessment/reducing the refund/increasing your liability. In case you have any objections to the same, your written reply on the attached Response Sheet should reach this office within 15 days from the date of receipt of this notice. Response Sheet is attached to this notice. Particulars of the mistake proposed to be rectified. IN ACCURATE ACCOUNT…

Rats in trains, open air theatre - a fun-filled trip

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Thanks to the bookings done the day it opened - 60 days back - we had train tickets to Ernakulam and back for the navarathri weekend.  
We had a 7 PM train to catch. We took at taxi at 6 and were comfortably in K R Puram Station by 6.30.  Our little one was excited by train travel and kept asking when our train would came.  Trains did come - one after another - passenger trains to Marikkuppam, Kolar and so on... Ours was late and finally came around 7.45.  It made up for lost time and we were in Ernakulam Junction at 6.15 PM next day.
As we unpacked, we found a portion of one of the boxes missing!  A rat had invaded the A/c coach of the train and tunnelled its way through one of our bags.  We had left the zipper of one of the side pouches open and it had used it to bye-pass the hard outer cover of the bag.   Lesson learnt - carry food items in backpacks which can be hung.  And zip up - the bags as well!
The kolu is an exciting time for the ladies - an occasion to socialize, visit each…

Valmiki Jayanthi - an enjoyable day for Bangalore Bankers

It is a Bank holiday today (18 Oct 2013).  Why?  Valmiki Jayanthi.  Is it that same Valmiki who wrote Ramayana?  Yes, indeed.  Now why are we observing his birthday as a holiday every year? On probing further, I realize it is not a holiday all over India, but in select States.  Karnataka is one of them.

It is a holiday under Negotiable Instruments Act.  This is an Act passed by British India in 1881 - imagine we are using this to declare our Government public holidays.  Here is the IBA notification for Karnataka.

When you look at the holidays, you realize that there is a bunch of them related to individuals.

Mahaveer Jayanthi (hey, I already wrote about this one)Mahatma Gandhi JayanthiMaharishi Valmiki JayanthiKanakadasa JayanthiAmbedkar Jayanthi (oh so sad - it is on a Sunday this time)
These are not religious holidays.  If we exclude Gandhi Jayanthi, it is evident that the other holidays have been declared just to appease certain communities.   In this particular case, from Wikiped…

Upgrading to Windows 8.1

It was by accident that I checked the internet to see if Windows 8.1 was ready yet and saw that it is "now" ready for download (6 PM on 17th Oct).   The interesting thing was, the "update" was available on Windows Store.  Seeing that the download size was 3.62 GB, I decided to skip it on my office laptop.

However, I could not resist the temptation to do it in our home laptop (the bleeding edge of technology, you see)!  I could not find the "update" in the "Store" of my laptop!  I tried clicking on the link from the Microsoft site to see if that helped - but Windows 8.1 update didn't show up.

Then the most typical thing that one would do in such cases stuck me - restart.  As I clicked on the "Power" icon - I saw "update and restart" - implying a bunch of Windows update was pending installation.

The system took its time to restart after applying the update (the five dots going around in circles can make you mad if you keep…

When parking cost more than the movie ticket

It all started when I got an SMS from the Bank which has issued my credit card.   The SMS had two Winpin coupons each work Rs.250/- for movie tickets from bookmyshow.   I had done a high value transaction for my company and there was some promotion, which resulted in this.

The coupons had an expiry (one month from SMS date), so I thought why not use it for a movie this weekend.  After some deliberations , we chose Raja Rani, a Tamil movie which had released that Friday.

So I logged into bookmyshow. My first theatre preference would have been the Cinemax in Total Mall, Outer Ring Road, but their show timings did not suit me.  The next one was Phoenix Market City, which had a 2.45 PM show.  I found that they had a booking category whose price was Rs.240/- -  That works for me, I thought.

I chose 2 seats (they were "filling fast") - and then found that they had added about Rs.20 odd rupees towards internet charges and so on per ticket - so the total cost came down to Rs.536.18…