Archive for July, 2009



कल – कल करती देख नदी,
हुआ आकर्षित, गोता लगाने को,
कभी तो सोचूँ, बहूं संग धार नदी के,
या फिर तैरू, विपरीत दिशा को |

बहे पूर्वाई जब सांझ-सवेरे,
पूछे क्या तू, चलेगा संग,
सोचूँ उड़ चलूं, या बैठे लूँ मैं आनंद,
कैसा है ये अंतर्द्वंद…. ये कैसा है अंतर्द्वंद..||

Categories: Hindi Poems Tags: , ,


July 20, 2009 2 comments

विगत वर्ष की बात है,
संयोग था वो, कोई अवसर नही,
काया सहित ये चंचल मन,
पन्छि बन उड़  चला कहीं |

आज पुनः ये उद्यत है,
एक नूतन उड़ान पर जाने को,
पहले की भांति ये विचलित है,
पर अडिग है बाधा भंजन को |

कल्पना है, की मार्ग असुगम है,
अवरोध मिलेंगे हर पग पर,
जीवट गाथा लिख देंगे,
इतिहास के स्वर्णिम पृष्ठों पर |


July 18, 2009 2 comments


देख शिखर एक पर्वत का,
बढ़ चला विजय प्राप्त करने को |
ध्वनि अपराचित सुन कभी,
चल पड़ा अनुसरण करने को |

आकस्मात फिर विचार ये आता,
गगन चूमने उड़ चलु मैं |
अगले पल ये सोचता हूँ,
सागर विचरण कर लूँ मैं |

इच्च्छित पाकर भी ना जाने क्यूँ,
कामनायें कभी ना होती मंद |
अंत आमंत्रित करता प्रारंभ,
कैसा है ये अंतर्द्वंद …. ये कैसा है अंतर्द्वंद ||

टूटा पत्ता

July 17, 2009 3 comments

एक  शाख  का  टूटा  पत्ता  हूँ,

हवा  के  झोंकों  से  भटकता  हूँ,

ना  कोई  घर  है,  ना  डगर  है,

जीवन  मेरा  एक  भंवर  है…..

अपनो ने भी दूर किया मुझे,

तो मैं कहु क्या तुझे…


तलाश  है  मुझे  एक  सहारे  की,

उम्मीद  है  मिलना  एक  किनारे  की…

ना  भी  मिला  तो  क्या,

भटकते  भटकते  यूही  एक  दिन  सूख  जाऊँगा,

इसी  माटी  में  जब  मैं  विलीन  हो  जाऊँगा… तब  मैं  तुझे  याद  आऊंगा..||

Qualified Intermediary & W Series Forms

This post is an attempt to let the readers know what kind of form they should fill up if they are drawing any part of their income from US. Currently I am working on a US Qualified Intermediary Project, so I feel myself qualified enough to certain thoughts on the subject J But in case if I have written anything wrong, please drop in your comments which I could incorporate in my post. I had compiled this piece of information for an internal training, taking inputs from discussions with company’s QI business and IRS website.

What is QI Agreement?

A QI is a foreign financial institution that has agreed with the IRS to undertake certain U.S. tax withholding and reporting responsibilities and has agreed to audits by an external auditor.


 Purpose of IRS Regulations to:

  • Identify US persons investing into the US through Offshore Intermediaries.
  • Eliminate “treaty shopping” abuses occurring due to manipulation of the “address rule” for dividends.
  1. IRS QI regulations took effect in January 1, 2001
  2. By enforcing QI regulations, IRS meant to establish client entitlement to correct tax withholding by appropriate KYC or W series forms.
  3. Maintain valid customer documentation and supporting information to higher standards, including the completion of IRS forms (W series), to make judgments of the US tax status of bank’s clients.

W9 Forms

The W-9 is only required of independent contractors who are US citizens, US resident aliens, and some other less common categories (e.g., a domestic estate). Non-US independent contractors may be required to fill out a Form W-8 (like the Form W-8BEN) instead of a W-9. This is not always the case. Investors, or freelancers, living in other countries may simply file the W-9, which will provide the employers or financial institution with a way to keep record of their information.

Resident & Non Resident Aliens

  • You are considered a US nonresident alien for any period that you are neither a United States citizen nor a United States resident alien.
  • You are considered a US resident alien if you met one of two tests for the calendar year:
  1. Green Card Test: If at any time during the calendar year you were a lawful permanent resident of the United States according to the immigration laws, and this status has not been rescinded or administratively or judicially determined to have been abandoned, you are considered to have met the green card test.
  2. Substantial Presence Test: To meet the substantial presence test, you must have been physically present in the United States on at least 31 days during the current year, and 183 days during the 3 year period that includes the current year and the 2 years immediately before.

W-8BEN Form

Request Form W-8BEN from any foreign person or organization to which you are making a payment if it is the beneficial owner of the income, whether or not it is claiming a reduced rate of, or exemption from, withholding.

A beneficial owner is required to enter its U.S. taxpayer identification number (TIN) on line 6 of Form W-8BEN if it is a beneficial owner that is claiming benefits under an income tax treaty.

However, a U.S. TIN is not required to be shown in order to claim treaty benefits on the following items of income:

  • Dividends and interest from stocks and debt obligations that are actively traded;
  • Dividends from any redeemable security issued by an investment company registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940 (mutual fund);
  • Dividends, interest, or royalties from units of beneficial interest in a unit investment trust that are (or were upon issuance) publicly offered and are registered with the SEC under the Securities Act of 1933; and
  • Income related to loans of any of the above securities.

Also request Form W-8BEN when a payee may claim an exception from domestic information reporting as a foreign person or to establish that certain income is not effectively connected with the conduct of a U.S. trade or business.

W-8IMY Form

Request Form W-8IMY from any person that is an intermediary (whether a qualified intermediary or a nonqualified intermediary), a withholding foreign partnership, a withholding foreign trust, or a flow-through entity. A flow-through entity includes a foreign partnership (other than a withholding foreign partnership), a foreign simple or grantor trust (other than a withholding foreign trust), and, for any payments for which a treaty benefit is claimed, any entity to the extent it is treated as fiscally transparent under section 894. Appropriate withholding certificates, documentary evidence, and withholding statements must be associated with Form W-8IMY or you must apply the presumption rules.

Note: A qualified intermediary, withholding foreign partnership or a withholding foreign trust must provide the EIN that was issued to the entity in such capacity (its “QI-EIN”). Otherwise, any Form W-8IMY it submits is not valid.)

W-8EXP Form

Request Form W-8EXP from any foreign government, international organization, foreign central bank of issue, foreign tax-exempt organization, foreign private foundation, or government of a U.S. possession to which you are making a payment if such person is claiming an exemption from withholding under section 115(2), 501(c), 892, or 895, or claiming a reduced rate of withholding under section 1443(b). For all other purposes, request Form W-8BEN or W-8ECI.

A withholding agent may treat a payee as an international organization without requiring a Form W-8EXP if the name of the payee is one designated as an international organization by Executive Order (pursuant to 22 U.S.C. 288 through 288(f)) and other facts surrounding the payment reasonably indicate that the beneficial owner of the payment is an international organization. With regard to amounts derived from bankers’ acceptances, a withholding agent may treat a payee as a foreign central bank of issue without requiring a Form W-8EXP if the name of the payee and other facts surrounding the payment reasonably indicate that the beneficial owner of the payment is a foreign central bank of issue.

A U.S. TIN is required if the beneficial owner is claiming an exemption based solely on a claim of tax- exempt status as a foreign private foundation (or other foreign organization described under section 501(c)). However, a U.S. TIN is not required from a foreign private foundation that is subject to the 4% excise tax on gross investment income (under section 4948(a)) on income that would be exempt from withholding except for section 4948(a) (for example, portfolio income).

W-8ECI Form

Request Form W-8ECI from any foreign person or organization to which you are making a payment if it is the beneficial owner of the income and it claims that the income is effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business within the United States.

Note: If you receive a Form W-8ECI without a U.S. TIN entered on line 6, you generally may not treat the income as effectively connected with a U.S. trade or business and you must apply the appropriate presumption rules.

Your receipt of Form W-8ECI serves as a representation by the payee or beneficial owner that all the income with which that form is associated is effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business within the United States. Therefore, if a beneficial owner provides you with a Form W-8ECI, you may treat all of the U.S. source income identified on line 9 paid to that beneficial owner as effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business within the United States.

Blink : The Power of Thinking – A review

I read about “Thin-Slicing” first when I was reading Malcolm Gladwell’s 2005 non-fiction book Blink, which analyzes the concept of “thinking without thinking.” It means making quick decisions on little information.

Gladwell’s hypothesis says that thin-slicing can lead you to a big trouble and can sometimes help you to make great decisions also. If you have taken small amount of information to baseline a decision or to come to conclusion, you could be often incorrect. Just like that, I would like to take my previous post, “IT Services Providing Companies vs. IT Captive Units”. I won’t say that I am completely correct. It is completely based on my experience; I did not take any other’s view in consideration for that post and even though I generalized what I thought. I could be fairly incorrect.

Blink by Malcolm Gladwell

Blink by Malcolm Gladwell

Gladwell has used the killing of Amadou Bailo Diallo to explain that how disastrous could be the effect of rapid judgment. He was a Guinean immigrant in New York City who was shot and killed on February 4, 1999 by four officers of Street Crime Unit of New York City Police Department. These policemen mistook him as a serial rapist who they were searching. As they approached him, Amadou took his hand in his jacket and policemen thought he was pulling out a gun. Immediately they opened fire at him. The four policemen fired a total of 41 rounds resulting on the spot death of Amadou. Later on it became a very big issue worldwide. New York Police Department end up paying more than USD 3 million as compensation. As a result of killing of Diallo the Street Crime Unit was disbanded.

Among the other topics mentioned in Blink, is Pepsi Challenge. Pepsi representatives set up a table in malls or shopping centers or other public locations with 2 cups, one with Pepsi and the other with Coca-Cola. They asked the passers by to taste the drinks in both the cups. This test revealed that majority of the people liked Pepsi. But Gladwell says that success of Pepsi over Coca-Cola was the result of the nature of sip & taste. Sip & taste is always different than what you taste the same thing in large amount. You may not like a thing when you take a sip of that, but you take it in large amount, you may probably like it and vice versa. Sip & taste fails to account for the satiating effect that you feel when quantity of food is more. So this example again says that quick decisions on small information may be wrong.

But sometimes, as said earlier, some great decisions are also made in a jiffy with little information. The first story mentioned in Blink is of Getty Kouros. It was a statue hundreds of years old, dug out of the ground and brought to the J. Paul Getty Museum in California. It was considered to be one of the biggest archeological discoveries then. Many experts across the globe confirmed after their study that the statue was legitimate. It was put on display in the museum in 1986. Book says that when people first saw the sculpture their initial response was indifferent. They were not able to believe that the sculpture was ever under the ground. Later it was proved in 1990 that blink moment was correct. The statue was fake and even common people, with no knowledge of archeology could understood that there was something wrong with the statue when they first saw it.

The fascinating case studies, as mentioned above are the best part of this book. And whatever Gladwell says, it all goes in line with the concrete examples he mentioned.

Categories: Books Tags: , ,

IT Services Providing Companies vs. IT Captive Units

I have just completed 2 years of my work experince in IT industry as Business Analyst. Out of 2 years , I have spent 13 months in Satyam Computers (now Mahindra Satyam) and rest in HSBC Technology Services. Based on my experience, I could easily draw a line of distinction between the way of working of an IT Services Providing Companies and IT Captive Units.

Companies outsource their IT operations/processes to IT services providers and sometimes the same companies establish captives out of a desire to have close control over offshore R&D operations, so you could say that how do they differ in the way they operate. It should be more or less same thing.

But they do differ. You might not completely agree with my views, but then if you have experienced both the environment, you won’t completely deny either.



(IT) Service Providing Companies (IT) Captive Units
1. Billings may be higher for a senior resource than a junior one. 1. Billings are always same for a fresher as well as a 20 years experienced resource.
2. Try to follow 40:60 onsite-offshore model. Prefer to keep resources at onsite as this will generate more revenue. 2. Allow resources to travel overseas in rarest of the rare cases. Mostly their concept is 1 or 2 out of 10 resources should be at onsite.
3. They will focus to grow their business and increase revenue. 3. Their focus will be to keep expense on IT as low as possible.
4. Associates may have opportunities to work in multiple domains. 4. One would have not have multiple options.
5. Would try quality work to be given to senior resources. 5. Senior, junior resources are treated as same in captives (based on my personal experience).
6. These companies would try to sell their associates to their client so as to fetch as many projects as they can. In this process they encourage their resources to upgrade their skills and be more competent. 6. There is no such need when captives would sell their resources as they have a fixed customer. Many a times it seems that they are least bothered about the interest of their resources.
7. Mostly associates work on specific technology or tool and they have a defined domain in which they gain expertise to grow over the period of time. This expertise, associates can carry to next organization whenever they look for a change. 7. In BFSI Captives, they mostly have In-Built systems (as different financial organizations work differently, probably because of that one financial organization’s processes are different from the others), so in many cases for associates like Business Analyst it becomes very difficult to develop a particular domain. When going for a change, it is difficult for next organization to map BAs’ skills with their requirement.