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Srisailum Trip …. With Friends @ CA September 20, 2006

Posted by Gaurav Dhiman in Adventure.
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Hello readers, hope you all are doing great. Today I will post my mail about my Srisailum (Andra Pradesh, India) trip. When I was in CA (Computer Associates) in year 2004, one fine day few of us (aficionados) decided to venture into the nature and have a biking trip to Srisailum from Hyderbad over the weekend. Initially most of the guys in our brand (eTrust) were really excited about this and but as me and Naveen started planning about it, then only few of us left to plunge into this adventure. I dont have words to explain how much we all enjoyed in those two days. I think that was one of my most memorable adventure trips till now. We all were crazy and young guys, who loved thrill and adventure.

After reaturning from trip, we all thought to send small write up to all people in our brand to tell them what all they missed, so we planned to write up our experiences and send the same to Veeresh, who complied all the experiences and sent a mail to all eTrust guys in CA Hyderabad. Well nothing to say more, following is that mail which we sent to all eTrust guys, so just have a look and read our experiences. I might post my details experiences of that trip on this blog sometime in future.

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Group Members (From left to right): Veeresh Agarwal, Abhishek Kumar, Shalabh Shrivastava, Mahesh Kumar, Naveen Kumar Bharatha, Gaurav Dhiman, Chandramohan Rajarathnam, Vijay Chakravarthy.

No. of Bikes: 4 (1 Pulsar, 2 Fieros, 1 Splender)

Top Speed: 100 Km/hr

Distance covered: 580 Km (approx.)

Left at 0425 hours on Saturday (3rd July 2004)

Came back at 0130 hours on Monday (5th July 2004)

Veeresh:

Day 1:

Starting point fixed was Prasads Imax. I was surprised to see that all 8 of us reached in time, showing the excitement we had about the trip. We started our journey at 0425 hours from – Khairtabad cross road. It was little dark with moon light showing us way. Later we could see the moon going down hiding behind clouds and Sun coming up from far across between the mountains. We took snaps and eat Pongal rice, Naveen had brought from home. Moving ahead, we reached Nagarjunasagar Dam at about 0900 hours covering 150 Kms. We had to go over the dam and in the middle of it we started taking snaps. We covered whole Dam road and created trouble for passers. An officer had to come and stop us stating that it’s a prohibited area.

We enquired our way out and came to know about Nagarjunakonda – Buddhist site. We were supposed to go by steamer to that place. Slight change in plans and decided to visit this as well. The steamer was scheduled at 1015 hours. In the mean time, we went near the river and on the rocks we did a small photo session, also got a chance to do some tracking while climbing back. On Steamer we had fun with cold drinks and other drinks, you know. There we saw Buddha’s sculptures of ancient time. By that time we really got tired and thinking of going 200 Kms more did put our spirits down. But Naveen and Chandramohan went on to see almost complete museum. Rest of us went back to steamer and took a nice nap to refresh ourselves. Nimboo- Banta really raised our spirits again and we started for Srisailam.

Close to Dam was a waterfall Ettipothala water falls. We thought of not missing this opportunity and headed for it without giving second thought. It was just 7-8 feet wide road, with lot of curves, tall bushes at sides, left no space for errors, went at a speed of 50 Km/hr (avg.). The scenic beauty of waterfall was amazing. It was like a heaven on earth (Don’t believe it, see yourself). Had lunch there and started for our final destination.

On the way to final destination, Naveen was in his full form and headed us at a speed of 70 – 80 Km /hr. On that day we were the only racers on this earth, went through rough narrow roads, blowing horns together to scare big lorries, going through muddy road sides, taking the risky overtakes, experiencing heavy rain. We were all drenched from top to bottom, water even found the way to our boots and bags etc, still we had no mercy for our bikes, we went straight through bumpy roads without stopping at speed breakers. We reached Srisailam at 2000 hours covering the hilly terrains in moon light, enough for satiating our hunger for thrill, excitement and adventure. Pillion riders were literally cursing all the drivers, they had a tough time. After reaching the destination, we took our bath and got fresh, had our dinner then sat around a juice stall to discuss the whole day experience. It was around 24 hours when we got into our beds hoping to wake up at 0500 hours next morning as we had a lot to cover in Srisailam next day.

Day 2:

To our surprise, nobody woke up at 0500 hours as we were all tried because of our hectic journey. Naveen woke up at 0800 hours and called up all the guys in their room. We quickly got ready and went to see the famous temple of Srisailam . It took 2 hours to g around the temple, also clicked few pictures there. Later, after having brunch, we decided to see Akkama devi caves for which we were supposed to cross the river through motor boat. Now our difficult time started again. We didn’t expect, the way to river bank would be that difficult. While stepping down to river bank, the most horrifying thought was to climb those big and endless step after coming back from caves. Still we did it.

We hired the boot and started for the caves with our life saving jackets on. Few of us got a chance to have hands on experience on steering. Played Antakshari to beat the time, clicked number of photos. Caves were dark and scary with no light, no air, and full of dust and suffocation with strong smell of Bats but beautiful, calm, quite and peaceful. Overall it was a nice experience. We all had the toughest time while coming back as we climbed steep stairs that seemed to be never ending. All of us were out of breath and had severe body ache. Again Nimboo – Pani came as a life saver. It was 1700 hours by the time we reached Hotel. We got refreshed at Hotel and left it at 1800 hours

Lastly we visited Sakshi Ganapathi temple. We started ffrom temple arount 1830 hours, it was dark, covering hills was fun and dangerous. The most embarrassing and funny part of the trip was fall of half of the team (Veeresh, Gaurav, Vijay & Chadru). We were going uphill and had to take a U turn. Suddenly, I felt that my bike’s gear was jammed and couldn’t speed up. My vehicle was tilted. For balancing I turned the vehicle little more and my front tyre got off the road. We didn’t get ground to keep our foot and fell. Vijay was very near to me. He too could not handle the bike and he too fell. Thank God, some body was there to give me company, just kidding. Good part of the story is that both the bikes fell at zero speed so no harm done. Our bikes were in good position and started our journey again. We made our bikes ran at a speed of 70-80-90 Km/hr taking the cover of four wheeler most of the time. Finally, we came back home safe and sound. We reached Hyderabad at 0130 hours on Monday. If u guys are not yet done and want more then I give you all, the experiences of my fellow members. These are worth reading.

Abhishek:

For me the best part of the trip was the journey itself we went through all those picturesque landscape and at that amazing speed . it was simply great and unforgettable . though the destinations were worth the trip and not to forget the jargon’s that we used repeatedly on the way

“Hit the road”

“kya Abhishek L2 mein hoke aisi baat karta hain”

“Cool man “

“follow the qualis”

And all those sign languages that we developed .

Also do you guys remember there were some children waving at us on going through the villages?

It was simply great and I don’t think the photo’s showcase the rush that we were experiencing . 40 hours – 650 KM – 5 km trek – 15KM boating –caves, mountains plains and the refreshing lemon banta juice

Not to forget the fear of tiger passing the jungle in the night guys there was so much to experience ……………

Naveen:

If bikes could speak …..

All bikes : Are in logo ne tho aisi ragadayee aisi ragadayee, pucho math meri tho gayee.

Fiero( Veeresh bike) : aur who saale(Veeresh) ki aisi ki thaisi, peeche Fiero(VJ bike) na hota, marva diya hota.

Fiero (VJ bike) : Tum to gire yaar, kaali peeli mujeko bhi le gire.

Pulsar : Kya nazara tha yaar, ek ke peche ek. Kya scene hai.

Jate waqat tho, mujhe ragadadi. Shukar hai bhagwan ki, meri jaan baach gayi, usne (Abhishek) aate

waqat thel dal diya. Nahin tho gasitha huye le chaltha Hyderabad ko.

Isko tho daad dene padenge, maine socha iske paas helmet nahin hai tho hallu chalaye ga,

Par, ek pal bhi nahin choda bas bagate chala bagate chal….na maruthi deki, na truck aur na quails.

Splendor : Is se (Naveen) aisi umeed nahin thi. Naya purana kuch bhi nahin dekha, bas bagate chale…

Ye bhi nahin socha, mein kitna bag sakta hoon. Sattar assi (70 – 80) pe chala diya mujhe..

All bikes : Are are sab ki halat buri ho gai. Na din na raath. Aandi garaz rahe the, baarish ho rahi, phir bhi rokne ki bath koyi

Nahin karta tha….bas bagate chale….

In log ne tho hamari jaan le li.

-all bikes

Gaurav:

Hi Guys,

This is my experience on the trip:

It was wonderful, great trip which I will remember for my whole life. It was a feeling of great achievement when we reached Srisalum.

I am feeling as if I have lived my life in these two days (Abhi mere ko DDLJ ka dialog yaad aa raha hai – “Ja beta, ji le apni zindagi”) …… meine bhi apni zindagi ji li in do dino mein.

Well the most enjoyable part of journey was the rough rally driving thru muddy narrow roads, overtaking trucks – blowing horns together to put the trucks aside, going on a speed of 70 – 80 on rough terrain, experiencing heavy rain in between and shivering after the rain, stopping at road side dhabas to refresh our self with a cup of tea & BISCUITS J, establishing our own sign language to avoid any casualties.

Other most rememberable part was natural caves …… it was an amazing experience to see such caves, full darkness, no fresh air inside, a lot of suffocation, a narrow cave to get into, full of dust ……. It was my first experience on such a wonderful place ……. At such a place one comes to know how the life can be without basics amenities around you.

Also enjoyed while traveling through boat …… playing antakshari to beat the long traveling time …… refreshing our self by sprinkling river water …… putting feet into cold river water while going on boat.

And finally the last not the least, how can I forget my great fall with my other three great friends (Veeresh, Vijay & Chandru) ……. It was shocking for a minute …… I first landed up on Vijay (as Vijay says, well I don’t remember) and then on big rock and finally I was in thorns ……. stayed there for 3 -4 seconds as I was shocked (what to do know) and did not expected it to be, it was sudden …… but finally we all were safe by the grace of GOD ……. I thank GOD for all the things …… I think such things are part of every such trip and we should not get down on these things ….. rather we should fell more motivated and keep on going …. with out this our first aid kit should have remained useless ……. so our first-aid kit came to rescue at right time.

To sum up, it was wonderful trip with lot of experience ……. I think our group did great and we should keep on planning such trips in future too.

Three Cheers to whole group ….. Hip-hip Hurry …….. Hip-hip Hurry ………. Hip-hip Hurry !!

Thanks & Regards,

Gaurav Dhiman

Chandramohan:

Unbelievable…

Unforgettable…

Unwrittenable…

Memories.

Still, I am

Hearing the Bike Sound…

Feeling the breeze …

Seeing the darkness…

Recalling all others…

&

Enjoying all.

Full credit goes to the four important persons

(Pulsar, Fieros(2) & Splendor),

whose make it happen without any problems.

LVU,

Chandru.

Shalabh:

I wont say that I will never forget

the trip to Srisilam instead I will

say that I will always and always

remember this trip beacuse of

-fear of tiger

-Complete Darkness in the forest

-Back pain caused to me as I was looking behind every minute to see whether all bikes are on the way or

not..

-Raining all the way..

-Deadly U turns ..

-Bike Avg Speed of 70Kms

-Road bumpers,

– Mountain Cave ,fear of Bats,

-My googly when i become ready for photo on the bike and one person stopped us to take photos.. Each one

of us<I guess VJ is with me>has photo on bike on Nagarujuna Dam.. gr8 googly.

-Those 1000 steps,which caused forever pain in my thighs..

-Gulping lemon soda time to time..

-Tokri Boating, again fear of falling down of trip mates Mahesh,Abhishek,Veeresh.

-Falling down of 2 Bikes and causing everybody other than Mahesh,Veeresh,Chandru,Naveen,Gaurav,VJ,Abhishek to fear of stuck in forest.

-Thank God Camera is back else frustration of thinking going down to 1000 steps again.

Every nth second I enjoyed the trip and once again thanks to tiger who caused the trip continuously exciting, amazing….

Cheers,

Shalabh

Vijay:

Oh man…..

U guys have mentioned everything about the trip…..let me see what I can think of….

The trip was amazing from the beginning till Monday night (when we had a complete good sleep)..

We guys turned out to be pretty punctual than expected…..Believe me..i had never expected to see everybody by 4:30AM atleast….I guess people were exited beyond belief……

Roads that lead us to and from srisailam were superb…though there were some bad ones…most of it was good…infact better…

There are few sweet memories that I would treasure and always relish upon….and here they are..

– The long…long…stretches that we covered by bikes….resulting in severe pains in the wrong place…

– Thunder showers pouring down….and the feeling of every droplet dripping down ur shirts and pants….:-)

– The up-hill walk that each of us went through completely which drained our energy….thats when we realized that all of us are lot more older than we seem to be…

– Of course…the falling of bikes…oh my god….that was one of the amazing things that I liked….though we didn’t have any big injuries…the fall was really good…it just added some more aches to our body…making our sleep even more desirable for the next day…

– The sudden US accented english of Mahesh and continuous chattering of my partner (chandru) on our way back were one of the best things to be witnessed.

– And most of all…during the non-stop ride in the rain….the tossing of little wet cow-dung pieces from naveen’s rear type to my shirt, pant and shoes…..Believe me guys…..when the shoes had dried..they were rock solid…..just then I understood why mud-huts are so strong in villages…even the dung can be so..so..useful…..J

– One natural habit of ours , though not a sweet memory to be relished was the contribution of natural fertilizers, manure to plants/trees on either sides of the roads….:-)

– The Tiger reserve was so reserved that we hardly could see any animals on our way…..

Vijay Chakravarthy. H

Naveen (again):

May be this is repetition, however this is about moments which I remember always…

I enjoyed the every second of my drive from Nagarjuna sagar to Srisailam.

This is where environment was set in, it was simply superb.

Sky with full of clouds and fresh greenery everywhere (leaves cleaned by fresh rain water).

Crossing gushing rain water on roads, then view of water stream along road side !!

And the view of mountains…

Last but not least, experience about the total darkness in the forest !!

To sum it up….the scenic beauty of Nature !!

naveen

Note: You all can share our memories through our photographs that are loaded on the share http://uk.pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/goodguys_in/album?.dir=bd04&.src=ph&store=&prodid=&.done=http%3a//uk.pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph//my_photos

 

Thalassamia – A Blood Disorder September 12, 2006

Posted by Gaurav Dhiman in About Thalassamia.
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As I talked about Thalassamia, a blood disorder, in my second blog, I am going to elaborate on the same in this blog entry. Mentioned in my second blog that my brother suffers from Thalassamia, a blood disorder, hence I have a very strong reason to make people aware of it. It is not a desease, which can be cured, rather I would say this is not at all a desease. It’s a blood disorder, the cause of which is a genetic reason. Definitely thalassemia can be prevented and for that parents should be educated about this. This article might help in education some people about thalassamia, to the extent I know about it.

Thalassaemia which is a blood disorder by birth and every responsible parent should be aware of it in advance before planning a family. I am aware of thalassaemia as my brother is thalassaemia major patient. I think I should share my knowledge about this so that more people become aware of it and its cause, which might in some manner result in decrease in thalassaemia major cases in future. After reading this blog, please forward the link to it to all your known ones, so that maximum number of people can be aware of this blood disorder and can prevent it from happening.

Thalassaemia (a blood disorder by birth) is highly previlent in south-eastern countries like India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka etc. This blood disorder can be prevented but can not be cured, so prevention is the only thing that we can do about it. Thalassaemia can be broadly divided in two catagories, one as thalassaemia major and another as thalassaemia minor.

Thalassaemia major is a condition in which person have to go for regular blood tranfusions once every month though out his/her life. This regular tranfusion of blood leads to other complications like deposition of iron on other internal organs of the body, like kidney, heart etc, resulting in their damage with time. To avoid this deposition of blood on internal organs thalassaemia major person have to take some other medicines for whole of their life.

Thalassaemia minor on other hand is a condition in which person leads a normal life (without any blood transfusions), but do carry the thalassaemmia traits in their genes, which might result that their children are also thalassaemmia minor or major as explained in detail below.

As most of us are not aware of thalassaemmia, so we do not take this that seriously. I think we all should be aware of it to prevent it in our children. Majority of us are thalassaemmia minor carriers, whithout we even being aware of it. We only come to know about it if we deliberately go for thalassaemmia blood screening or if we give birth to thalassaemmia major child (which is too late, we could have prevented it).

Before getting married, do go for proper blood screening for thalassamia traits in both the partners. Here is the brief about these traits, for more in detail you can read at the links given at the end of this blog entry or this PDF file.

Here is the genetic cause of thalassaemmia, read about it, we all need to be aware of it, atleast all responsible parents should be aware of it.

In our DNA, we have haemoglobin chain genes. Faulty haemoglobin chain genes are represented by ‘r’ and correct haemoglobin chain genes are represented by ‘R’. A parent can have any combination of this, I mean ‘rr’, ‘rR’, ‘Rr’ and ‘RR’. Thalassaemia major is the case of ‘rr’, when both chains are faulty, in this case the person need to go through regular blood tranfusions through out his/her life as the red blood cells generated in body are week (basically saying then they are improper in shape) and do not have longer life, resulting in decrease in Haemoglobin, this is known as Thalassaemia major blood disorder and it happens from birth. To avoid this situation both parents should screen their blood before marriage. Both ‘rR’ and ‘Rr’ are known as minor Thalassaemia carriers, these people lead their life normally, but do carry the thalassaemmia traits, so their children will also carry this trait. Its normal to have thalassaemia minor. Most of us might be thalassaemia minors, but might not be aware of it. We come to know about it only when we screen test our blood for thalassaemia traits or give birth to thalassaemia major child. Giving birth to thalassaemia major child can only happen if both parents are thalassaemia minor of same type (alpha or beta) or if one of the parent is thalassaemia major and another is thalassaemia minor.

Following are the possible gene combination for a child:

– If parents are RR (both parents do not carry thalassaemia traits) – child can have only rr (without thalassaemia traits, perfectly ok)

– If both parents are rR or Rr (anyway) – child can be either rr, rR, Rr or RR. This means 25% chances are that child will be without thalassaemia traits (perfectly ok), 50% chances are there that child will be thalassaemia minor and 25% chances are that child will be thalassaemia major (this happens only if both parents are carrier of same thalassaemia type, either alpha or beta. If both are of different type child will never be thalassaemia major).

– If both parents are rr – child will always be thalassaemia major, because child will always have rr combination of genes, which is a thalassaemia major, means both genes chains are faulty.

– if one parent is rr and another is rR or Rr (this means one parent is major and another is minor) – child can be either rr, rR or Rr. This means, there is 50% chances that child can be thalassaemia major and 50% chances that child can be thalassaemia minor. It not possible in this case that child is without thalassaemia traits.

– if one parent is RR and another is rR or Rr (this means one parent is without any thalassaemia trait and another is with minor thalassaemia trait) – child can be either RR, Rr or rR. This means, there is 50% chances that child is perfectly ok (without thalassaemia traits) and 50% chances that child can be thalassaemia minor. It not possible in this case that child can be thalassaemia major.

– if one parent is rr and another is RR (one parent is without thalassaemia traits and another is thalassaemia major) – child can be either rR or Rr, means always be thalassaemia minor.

After explaining all genetic these details, let me tell you that the point of concern is thalassaemia major as in that case child have to go through regular blood tranfusions through out the life and its a major pain for them to have it for whole life and its just because parents were unaware of this blood disorder or the cause of it. Moreover thalassaemia major people face other medical problems also because of their regular blood transfusions, problems like spleen enlargement, with time problems in heart or kidney because of deposition of iron on them.

Only prevention is the solution to this blood disorder, you can prevent it by getting your and your partner’s blood screened before you get married. As explained above different possible gene combinations are possible, so just an advice, get your blood screened for thalassaemia before you get married or plan your family.

For more detials on thalassaemia and in-depth knowledge of it, please refer to following links or search for it on google. I am also attaching on pdf file with this mail, might be of your interest. I think those people should atleast read more about thalassaemia who are soon going to be parents.

Links:

http://www.geocities.com/HotSprings/5917/thal3.htm http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thalassemia http://www.bloodgivers.com/thalassaemia.asp

PLEASE FORWARD THE LINK TO THIS ARTICLE TO ALL YOUR KNOWN ONES

First two years of my professional life … August 29, 2006

Posted by Gaurav Dhiman in My Professional Life.
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In last blog entry, I mentioned about my final semester project which I did in HCL Technologies, in this blog entry I will mainly talk about my more experiences of HCL after formally joining it on 2nd Sept, 2002.

Yes on 2nd Sept, 2002, I formally joined HCL Technology as an employee. As I already worked there for more than 6 months as a trainee, I knew some people there. This time I was allocated to NCR business unit of HCL Gurgaon. NCR was one of the major clients of HCL at that time. It is one of the major maket holders of ATMs (automatic teller machines). At that time there were 2 buildings of HCL in Gurgaon near Kappaseda Border of Delhi. One of the buildings had the distinctions of being the first building from where HCL group started. It was commonly known as HCL old building. Another building was relatively very new and was well built with glass doors and shining floors, this was known as HCL Manak. Actually the building was earlier acquired by Manak Shoes, hence the name Manak. I was in Manak building. I was a part of the team who was responsible for maintaining the NCR’s ATM management software. My Manager was Jaideep Aggarwal, who was a nice person and considerate too. He was young an dynamic and quite open with the people under him. The environment was ok there in NCR ODC (Offshore Development Center), but I was not much enjoying the work. Being a maintainence work, there was not much excitement in the work. We used to write the pluggable code or to fix some trivial bugs in already code. I was not adding much value to my skills there, hence asked to my manager number of times to shift me into some system software project. I was interested in doing Operating System/ Device Driver/Hardware programming, which was not the part of my job in NCR. Every time I used to talk to Jaideep about internal transfer to some other interesting project, he use to tell me in a friendly manner that things are not much in his hands too. He was responsible for the projects getting executed under him and not for the resource allocation. Resource allocation was basically a job of HR and BU (Business Unit) Heads. BU heads used to put request to HR for the requirements in different projects in their BU and then HR used to either shift some free resource from one BU to another BU or used to recruit resource from outside the company.

In most of the software service companies in India, the working culture is not as per the expectation of employees. Its my observation that most of the employees in these companies are not happy about their projects, about their managers, about rigid hierarchy system in company, too much focus on unwanted quality metrics etc. A human resource (employee) is allocated to any project, without much considering of his/her interest and skill set. These companies follow a model of getting the software projects in some specific domain from different countries and then hire or use the already available resources to execute and deliver the project. This type of working model is also known as outsourcing or consultancy as well. These companies depend on large resource pool rather than small but highly technical resource pool as in product companies. This is the reason that these service companies do bulk hirings at campus of engineering colleges through out India. They get most of their human resources from college. As the work does not demand high technicality, in most of the cases, college graduates (fresh pass out engineers) are able to perform the job at lesser cost than a experienced high earning engineer.

As told earlier the working model of service based companies is to get the projects, execute them and deliver the things in time. As the product on which they work is owned by the client, so service based companies are not given much access to the marketing or technical details of product. At the same time they are not given much freedom by client to explore products. Due to these restriction, most of the work which comes to these companies is of testing, documentation, maintainence or bug fixing. They are not given the development or R&D work, because they are the core areas for any technology company and giving such work to third company means opening up the company to everyone. Service companies rely on huge human resource base to execute the projects. They claim to have broader skill base rather than deeper skill base to attract more projects from different type of companies. They don’t focus on specific technologies, as they don’t know what they will be working on next year, rather they focus on domains. They prepare their resource base to acquire skills required for a particular domain or profession (example banking, retail, medical etc), so that the resource can build up the carrier path in that domain.

I will be writing a separate blog entry on my experiences and learning about working models of both service and product software companies in India. I will explain in detail the differences and approach used by both service and product based software companies towards their business.

Returning back to my work experience in HCL, I continued working for NCR client for 2 years, till April 2004. On 17th March, 2002, I resigned from HCL Technologies to join a US based product company Computer Associates, in their India center at Hyderabad. I resigned from HCL as I was not much happy with the working style of HCL at that time. My work in HCL was not adding much skills to my tool box. Although I was working on system used by NCR in their production servers, I was not happy because I was looking for some development work related to Operating Systems. I was writing the pluggable code, which was not adding any technical skills to me and regarding management skills, it was too early for me to have exposure to it. Since my college days, I was more interested in Operating System Programming or System Software and wanted to work in that. I was not getting that opportunity in HCL, even after talking to my manager number of times.

At the time time when I was looking for opportunities outside HCL, I had an option of CA, Cadence and Oracle, all three product companies. At that time I was not much exposed to the product company working culture, hence did not know what is the main difference between service and product company. At that time, my main reason for change was work and my learning curve. At that time, I had an offer from CA Hyderabad and Oracle Bangalore, but was in talks with Cadence Noida. I was waiting for an offer from Cadence, but did not get it till the last day. Actually the requirement got scraped in Cadence for which I was interviewed. So finally I joined CA on 27th April. I choose CA over Oracle although the salary of CA was bit less than what Oracle offered me. One of the reasons to join CA was that I was getting a chance to work on security domain (eTrust) their, where as in Oracle I was offered for a position in their Enterprise Server Group, in which the work was mostly related to database enhancements and Oracle database internals. In CA the security brand is known as eTrust. Most of the products in this brand do work in Operating System, which was an area of my interest, hence I decided to join CA.

In my coming blog entries, I will let you know about my wonderful experiences in CA. CA was one of the companies that I enjoyed a lot. Hope you enjoyed reading this blog.

Leading to Professional Life …. August 21, 2006

Posted by Gaurav Dhiman in My Professional Life.
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Hello everyone, I hope you are not getting bored by these blog entries. I just casually writes whatever comes in my mind, so don’t expect any professional or formal stuff from me. While writing, I am just like a river that keeps on flowing on its track without knowing where it is aheading. I too just keeps on writing, without knowing much what I will be writing. Anyway, leave all this. In my last post, I mentioned about my family and education. In this entry I will start with the experiences of my professional life.

I still remember the date of my first day in my first company. It was 21st Jan 2002, when I joined HCL Technologies Gurgaon branch as a trainee (for my final project of MCA course). MCA course requires you to have on-project experience in industry during the final semester. Without this MCA is not considered to be complete. As I got selected by HCL Technologies during campus placements, so I got the chance do my final project in HCL Technologies, but it was not all that easy. I remember Sushil, Rajnish (my batch mate) and I made all the effort to get this chance. The day our 5th semester exams got over, the same night we decided to visit HCL Technologies office in Noida (near New Delhi) to talk to HR about the possibility of getting a chance to do the final semester project in HCL. We took a train from Chandigarh at late night (1:00 am) and reached the apartment of one of our seniors in Noida early morning at 7:00 am. Our senior (PV) was working with HCL too. We talked to HR about our the possibility of doing project in HCL, but she refused to commit anything, as the overall inflow of projects in HCL was not good at that time. She told that it would be better if we try somewhere else, in case there if HCL can offer us the project for final semester, she will let us know. After hearing this, we realized that getting a job in campus is not at all a surety of getting on the pay-roll of the company. Company can still refuse to make you join and can withdraw the offer anytime. Considering all this we started looking for projects somewhere near our university and finally got one good project in a Govt institution, CEDTI Mohali (know known as CDAC Mohali). In that project, were supposed to create the spell-checking feature for a MS-Office like software for punjabi language. We were still hoping to get the offer from HCL to do our project there and tried to keep in touch with HR. Before we could start with our project in CEDTI, we got the offer from HCL to join on 21st Jan 2002 as a trainee to complete the final semester project. Me and my other batch mates, who got selected in HCL, were really happy to have this chance as at that time getting started with first job was tough. We know that getting a chance to do project in HCL would definitely make the chances of joining HCL as an employee more brighter.

On 21st Jan, 2002, Sushil and I both reached HCL office in time, but to our surprise there was a huge crowd standing outside the office. As we were new to the environment, so we asked the the guard for the reason. guard told that IT Dept (Income Tax Department) has raided all the center of HCL through out India and the tax officers has sealed the office for inquire. Only very few higher management people along with company’s finance guys were inside the building, answering to tax officers questions. It was a memorable day for me, as it was my first day on job and the same day the company I was supposed to join was raided by IT Department. Well, anyway this is how I started my professional life.

For my final semester project, I was assigned to the pre-sales team in HCL’s Gurgaon center, where my manager was Deepak, the only guy directly reporting to the center head Rajeev Sodhi. Rajeev Sodhi was also the Vice-President of HCL Technologies at that time. It was surprising as well as shocking to me to be in pre-sales team, as I was not actually fit for it. I completed the degree in computer science and was expecting an engineering job, but I think I was placed wrongly in pre-sales. After spending some time there doing my pre-sales job, which was not much exiting to me, I realized that fresher were not given much importance in HCL. Frankly speaking, as I learned from my experience, freshers in Indian software service industry are not at all taken seriously. Most of the companies take them as resources who are not of much immediate use. They are considered as fillers and are mostly put in non-sense work. As they do all rubbish work against their wish, they learn about industry, its working style, what client means, how diplomatically the projects are executed and during all these years either they learn to cope up with the environment or get frustrated with the working style of companies. With this learning they start realizing that their experience is not adding much value to them, its only adding an experience to their resume. My personal thinking is that the fresh pass outs from colleges are full of enthusiasm and are willing to learn and take risk, if they are provided the right work of their interest and as per their knowledge and skills. They can add a lot of value to company if assigned right jobs.

From MCA days I was more keen on doing programming in C and wanted to do system software development, but I was not that lucky to have that in first shot. You might be able to imagine, that if a guy who is passionate about something is asked to do which is not at all of his interest, how he must be feeling. I was going through the same feeling. I was passionate about doing system programming and was well equipped for the same, but the first professional job that was assigned to me was totally in different area, my hard luck.

In that pre-sale profile, my job was to search on the net for probable clients for HCL in the domain HCL used to serve (Banking and Retail). What was expected out of me was to look into the websites of different companies and to prepare the documents after knowing about their product servings, their sale figures, profit margins, partnership companies etc. Well I continued such work for some days, and then one day I reached the stage when I literally cried in front of my friend ( Aman) who was also used to be my batch mate in MCA. He knew that, what was hurting me as he knew about my passion to work as a system software programmer. He made me feel that what I was thinking about my job was right but ultimately company needs profits and they do not consider the interest of each and every individual in the company. Company is not a university or a research organization where one can take the things of his interest, rather company is a business entity, whose sole aim is to make profits. At that time it was difficult for me to understand this fact, as I was fully overpowered with my passion to work as a system software programmer. I understood this fact as I spent more time working in the company.

Well this is all for this blog entry, I will talk about what I did in HCL and how was my experience there, in my next blog entry.

My Roots … August 12, 2006

Posted by Gaurav Dhiman in Uncategorized.
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As told in my earlier blog entry, I am from India. A 29 year old sikh (cutsurd) guy, who is software engineer by profession. I beong to a middle class educated family of Punjab, India. Both my parents used to work (now retired). My father was an engineer in HMT (Hindustan Machine Tools) and my mother was science teacher in a Govt school in Punjab, she got retired as a principal of high school in Panjab state of India. Being from an educated family, my parents inculcated the high value of education in us (me and my brother and sister).

I have one elder sister and one younger brother. Sister lives in Bangalore (silicon valley of India) and is happily married to a computer engineer and has two sweet kids. My brother is 2 year younger to me and I find him highly resourceful and energetic guy. He is full of engery and always ready to take up challenges in life. He suffers from thalassemia since his birth, due to which he has to go for blood transfusion every month. For a normal man like me it would be pain to have transfusions for whole life, but I find my brother really couragious to face all this with always a smile on his face. He knows that this is the fact of his life and accepts it boldly. I think whenever GOD put somebody in pain or in such a situation, he also gives the courage and extra powers to face them. For an instance, my brother knows that he suffers from such a blood disorder and he will have to go through blood transfusions every month, but still then he is happy at heart, jolly natured guys who is always ready to help others. Frankly speaking, he is the happiest and cool headed guy I that I ever know. He is one of my best friends as I enjoy his compay a lot and hope he also enjoys mine :-). My brother being a thalassamia patient, I know what exactly thalasssemia is. Like my brother, there are a lot of other children who suffers from thalassamia, but still people don’t know much about thalassamia, its cause and prevention. I would like to educate people about it and will soon dedicate one full blog entry to thalassamia, a blood disorder.

Coming back to me, I recently got married (in Dec 2006) with Nishi. She is a lovely girl, who is mature at mind, soft and emotional at heart and very understanding and adjustable. I feel lucky to have her in my life.

Regarding my education, I complete my schooling and college from Chandigarh. After completing my graduation in commerce, I did my MCA (Master of Computer Applications) from DCSA, Panjab University Chandigarh. Three years of MCA were my best years till now to acquire the required skills for the flourishing software industry in India and at the same time that was the golden period of my study phase. I made life-long friends, enjoyed department parties, nightouts and hostel life (though the time spent in hostel was short, being a day scholar). Let me tell you that I like dancing (different types of dances). I performed alot in Department’s events and was a part of number of dances through out 3 year MCA course. It provided me an opportunity to overcome my shyness and made me more confidence to perform on stage in front of large public. I even organized, few of the functions for department, for instance an alumni party when we were in our final year. I got very good exposure to number of things during those 3 years, like I was one of the members of placement cell for my batch, and was responsible for intracting with HRs of different companies to invite them for campus placements. This experience gave me good exposure to public dealing and honed my interpersonal skills.

During our placements, software industry, not only in India but worlwide, was going through the bad phase of lay offs and companies getting shut down. One of the reasons was 9/11 and another was famous software buble burst of year 2000. It was hard to bring the companies to campus, as companies were not able to post good results and hence freezed their recruitments. That time was bad for any fresher, who put his 3 years studing to get a good job at the end of it. Well anyway, our batch was able to fetch some jobs. Around 48 % of our batch got placed during campus placements in companies like Hughes Software Systems, HCL Technologies, C-DOT, CSC, TATA Infotech etc, but still there was more than 50% of batch who were waiting for more companies. Finally nothing mch could be done as that was bad time for placements and the scene was same almost in every software college of India. Once the on-campus placements got over, the placement cell tried to arrange some of the off-campus special walk-ins for our batch with some of the companies. During these off-campus sessions some more batchmates got placed and rest tried for some teaching jobs to start with. Finally the good part was that as the recruitement situation improved in 2-3 years, most of my batchmates got jobs in good companies.

The whole process of going through 3 years of MCA, made me more independent in decision making, more confident about myself and made me recognize my hidden talent, which I was not much aware of befroe joining MCA. I am talking about, being a good dancer, a good programmer and a person who is good in building social network as I enjoy making friends. All this gave me the sense of achievement at the end of my MCA. At the end I realised, why people (our elders) normally say it that its a different experience to attend professional course than a non-professional course. I think the projects your are given, the involvment you have in different activities and the decisions you are required to take during your professional course, do reflect in your personality later in life. In one word that makes you mature, sensible and more responsible.

Thats it for now. I will take from here in my next blog entry about my further educational, professional and personal experiences.