Friday, February 24, 2012
Saturday, February 18, 2012
I have pleasure in posting the record of an unique Cathedralite, a 59er David Colaco.
An outstanding boxer and athlete, it will be difficult to find someone with such an impressive record.
I am pleased to be able to post the picture of his Western India Boxing medal.
Besides being a great sportsman, David and his elder brother, the late 58er Michael Colaco, had fantastic soprano voices and sang in the St. Thomas Cathedral Church Choir. (I also squawked in that choir alongside them!)
David's Boxing Record:
First: Junior Flyweight 22nd Apr 1954
First: Junior Flyweight 19th Apr 1955
First: Junior Bantamweight 3rd Apr 1956
First: Junior Bantamweight 29th March 1957
Most Scientific Boxer Prize 29th March 1957
First: Junior Featherweight 18th March 1958
First: Senior Flyweight 24th March 61
Western Indian Box Champion CJ Hall (medal picture)
David's Record in Cross Country and Athletics:
First: Junior Cross Country Jogeswari 19th Jan 1957
Second: Junior 800 metres Brabourne Stadium 23rd Feb 1957
First: Junior Cross Country Jogeswari 19thJan 1958
Second: Junior 800 metres Brabourne Stadium 27th Feb 1958
Sixth: Junior Gymnastics 7th Nov 1957
I hope to post similar info about the other 59ers who have done extremely well in their lives!
Friday, February 17, 2012
Saturday, February 11, 2012
It is very strange, but a few years ago Neelam surfaced on my internet radar but then vanished. Had I been dreaming?
When planning our 50th year reunion, I searched all my mailboxes to find the correspondence that had transpired between us, but I did not trace it.
On the other hand, another Neelam Lakhaney took great offence to how I had addressed our Neelam in one of my blogs and was ready to fly at me over the internet.
But I digress, as I was intending to talk about the Boxing Final's evening.
Those of us who had not made it, got to school early so as to get the best place on the first floor overlooking the boxing ring. The boxing ring was always professionally made up and looked resplendent. I wonder who supervised that. Mr Morecroft?
The air was filled with excitement as we watched our House representatives who had made it to the finals, fight FOR US! It was as if we were in the ring with them, trading blow for blow with the opponent!
The air was always charged with excitement as we watched each fight, shouting for OUR Fighters.
If our guy lost, we were ready to blame the judges. The atmosphere was absolutely electric, right through the evening for a few hours well into the dark. We shouted our throats hoarse.
It was the late night that we enjoyed and it is these evenings that are deeply ingrained in my school days memory!
Friday, February 10, 2012
We used to hold reunions at my home whenever Ajeet had felt the need for some company or needed Annikki or my advice on something. (We authored a paper on E-Governance together and I read most of his papers before publication as a critique.)
Ajeet left a few years ago and is now a Professor at the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad.
That left me as the sole Cathedralite on Finland.
After my retirement, I have been running a small service apartment business with apartments in Oulu, Tampere, Espoo and Helsinki.
Oulu is where I live and is a high tech city. Tampere is the industrial hub of Finland in Central South Finland. Helsinki, in South Finland, is the capital city and adjacent to the county of Espoo, which is also famed for higher engineering as it is the home of Otaniemi, the Technical University of Espoo.
The service apartment business is a sort of social service cum hobby. The main clientele are young engineers from various Indian MNCs as Wipro, TCS, Aricent, NSN Bangalore, Hughes Systique and many others.
Recently, I had a request from two engineers from a company I did not recognise. I was able to place them in separate shared apartments in Edpoo.
On my visit to Edpoo, after a hectic schedule, I found my way to the apartment block where I had placed thes guys. It must have been past 10 pm when I reached there.
I found both of them in one of the apartments as they had been dining together. Introductions over, as is customary for me, I pry! Both of them were from Mumbai. "Which school?" I asked, and Ashwin promptly came back with the answer - Carhedral!
I could not believe my ears. Another Cathedralite in Finland. Our Alumni Association was back in buiness.
For the next couple of hours we shared many a topic and I was able to show Ashwin and friends what Cathedral School had meant to me, my association with the school, our fabulous 59er Mother of all Reunions, and much more.
Ashwin has only passed out in 2003, so he probably could not quite fathom how we had kept our spirit so alive. I think he will learn as the yesrs go on.
I have visited Espoo a couple of times siince and made it a point to visit him. He has now moved to his own apartment. I will try to meet up with him on future visits to ensure that our Finnish Alumni Section is kept active.
Great to have you in Finland - Ashwin.
Thursday, February 09, 2012
I do not know whether anyone else has achieved that in the last 50 years. (I got elected because of a wonderful band of 1st year students - Rajen Mammen Mathew (now Padma Shri); Ramu Katakam; Azar Siddiqui; Suresh Mehra; a great set of guys from my second year; and the support of a few well respected seniors.
That was my winning strategy with the Seniors giving me the respect factor; my year group standing firmly behind me: and the freshers working their guts out at all levels.
What more could I ask?
The reason for bringing this up here is that I learnt a lot from that experience. I have helped many people get elected since.
I share this with you now, as a very dear friend, a classmate, is standing for elections for the Mumbai Muncipal Corporation, and I would like all of you to work to get him elected.
Captain Vijay Shivdasani is 69, retired from the Indian Navy after captaining the aircraft carrier, ran his own business in Hong Kong, and has been doing literally hundreds of things in Mumbai since returning.
He walks tall, still plays a great game of tennis, and is honest and dedicated to the core.
You may be 1000s of miles away, like me,and feel you can do nothing.
But you can create a viral pitch by activating just 7 friends, who in turn can activate 49 more. Within just 1 week we could have an honest man doing things in Mumbai.
The vital step is NAME RECOGNITION. This is very critical. Almost 70% of people going to vote have no clue whom they will vote for 24 hours before voting day.
Just a phone call to a friend telling them about Retd. Captain Vijay Shivdasani and asking your 7 friends to spread the word to 7 more each, has a viral effect when it comes so close to election day.
Reaching the correct voter bank.
I did not know how to reach the bulk voter bank in South Colaba, but one of our contacts, former Cat Alumni President Rajiv Bhatia, was one step shead of me. He had been helping a fisher girl from that area. He has put her to work to reach as many of that group as possible. The effort will be renewed now that he knows that someone 7000 km away is also pushing for Vijay.
Just like the fisher folk, the small shops of South Mumbai are thronged with shoppers. There must be a pitch to get Vijay's flyers in each of those shops.
I would like all of you or your relatives or friends, to take this up with your favorite shop in South Mumbai. The effect will be seen in the result.
Then there are large apartment main doors. A flyer pasted on each main entrance has a remarkable effect as every resident bonds with a person who is visible every time they come home.
Then there are the Community Centres. A flyer in each helps each community trust a person who shows appreciation for their community.
Grass roots exposure in schools, colleges, cinema halls, religous establishments, hotels, restaurants, clubs, buses, in the local area are all important places to place flyers as they get the highly mobile population informed about Vijay.
(Remember that flyers could be in English, Marathi, Gujarathi, Hindi, Konkani, Malayalam and Tamil.)
So let us get started and get Vijay elected! D-day is 16th February 1 week from today.
Let it RIP, let it THUNDER!
It is not often I ask for any assistance. Now I do, for my friend.
If you know someone in South Mumbai, please ask them to vote for retd. Captain Vijay Shivdasani, my childhood friend, my school classmate, a good friend till today (like you), totally a man of integrity, a man of decision, and, like me, a man with enormous energy to accomplish things. At 69, he still plays a mean game of tennis, walks tall, and has a schedule which puts me to shame!
I do not ask this lightly. If each of you can rouse 7 voters, just 7, then we will have a viral success that you will be part of with pride in your accomplishment.
Remember that I am 7000 km away but care enough for our CITY to stand up and support one honest candidate.
Please forward to all your friends.
Call Shivi if you want. Just tell him that I asked you too. He will listen and act on whatever your request.
He is the hand we need up guide our city - Mumbai.
Please note: the Bombay Municipal elections are to be held on 16th February.
A submission by Vijay and I stand by every word he says:
CAPTAIN VIJAY SHIVDASANI
A NOTE BEFORE YOU VOTE
The main reason people do not vote and that there is so much cynicism is because many parties are tainted by rampant corruption, numerous scams and poor performance in governance. You and numerous other thinking voters like you do not find a credible educated candidate of calibre because such people shun politics. For these reasons I have decided to offer myself as an Independent Citizen Candidate – to do the best for Mumbai where I live, for South Colaba where I was born and for Navy Nagar where I spent many years in uniform.
I am a family man, groomed at one of the best schools – Cathedral School, Mumbai, and am alumnus of the National Defence Academy, Khadakvasla. I successfully completed an advanced navy post graduate study at the Royal Military College of Science, UK.
As a serviceman, dedication to my country and men is paramount. The motto, Service Before Self, was deeply ingrained at an early age. It has been uppermost in peace and war. I have had the responsibility to sail and command numerous warships, been the Commander of an operational aircraft carrier, the Operations officer in the 1971 war and Head of the Alma Mater – the Navy’s Signals Establishment, Kochi, where thousands of personnel are trained each year.
Working recently in Mumbai, as head of an NGO, Founder of a Charitable Trust, an active member of the Nariman Point Association and A Ward Federation, I sincerely believe I have the experience, knowledge and educational background to improve the standard of living and lower your taxes by better governance decisions and without corruption.
After retiring from the navy I lived and worked in Hong Kong. It is a modern efficient island city where despite limitations of space, every civic system works – ferries, roads, mass transportation and traffic, drainage, hygiene and healthcare services, municipal education, sanitation and water supply, the rule of law and police, clean green open spaces with low levels of pollution – all these are of a world class standard. This is what I would strive for in Mumbai. This is my Mission.
I am often asked what an independent citizen candidate can achieve. As the saying goes – never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world – indeed it is the only thing that ever has!
So do cast your valuable vote for Corporator for