Monday, December 26, 2005


Perceptions are more real than reality. I had heard this dictum many times before but realized the true meaning recently when one of my acquaintances visited me from US. He had never visited Hyderabad before in his life. After he landed here, he kept saying how the traffic was really bad and how the municipal corporations don’t have foresight in dealing with these problems. From people who live in the US, it was a very common reaction but than came another one, “Bangalore is also facing an infrastructure breakdown. It will soon cease to be the favourite outsourcing destination.” I was feeling sad since I felt that both Hyderabad and Bengaluru* have better achievements to boast of than these problems that have kind of overshadowed their image. So, I needed to do some PRgiri for Hyderabad at least since it was my city.

While our vehicle stopped near Punjagutta waiting for the signal to go green, looking at the Hyderabad Central he suddenly asked me, “Is it the main railway station.” And I answered, “Yes, it is. Chennai has Chennai Central and we have Hyderabad Central.” It was a well calculated guess as I knew for a fact that visiting the mall was not in his itinerary and he had a return flight booked that evening. And then suddenly things became pretty and he had some really nice things to say about the city. “Hey, your railway station looks cool man. It looks better the airport. Even Delhi metro doesn’t have such beautiful station,” he said and I smirked.

Now talking about malls, Hyderabad is currently getting mauled by them. Every single day a new mall is inaugurated by Telugu starlet and there is a traffic jam for two hours. Sadly some of these stars don’t even see the same number of audiences in front of the theatres for their movies. May be they come to these functions so that they can get some false confidence.

And speaking of confidence and stars, nobody can do it better than Dev Sahab. In spite of people rejecting his movies time and again he has made another valiant attempt at making a movie and this time with “earthquake of a story.” But does he need to write that. Seeing a Dev Anand movie is the same as facing an earthquake. “You just pray for it to finish its act in the shortest possible time.”

*In case you are wondering, Bengaluru is the new name of Bangalore, specially coined to give visiting Americans a lesson in Phonetics.

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