Friday, November 27, 2015

We are living in Satyug

We are living in Satyug

Religious people tell us that we are living in Kaliyug. Only 4300 years of Kaliyug have passed and more than 4.28 lakh years are yet to go.

But let us look at the change occurred in the life of common men in India in last 50 years.

Chandubhai Patel lives in Gandhinagar in a house of 135 sqm. When he constructed his house in 1995, he used all the space allowed for construction and didn't leave 2.5 metre space for a car parking. Owning a car was a dream for him in 1995. Now, he parks his car on the footpath. When he was in College in 1965, he used to wear one pent for 1.5 years and got it reversed paying Rs. 10 to the tailor to use it for another 1 year. He was studying in Vallabh Vidhyanagar. A train ticket from Anand to Bhavnagar was costing Rs. 12. Students had Rs. 5 concession. He was to stand in a queue of the College for 2 hours (for collection and depositing concession form) and had to go two hours early to the railway station to get the concessional ticket from the separate window. It was a hardship to save Rs.5 from the train ticket. After receiving two pay commissions from Mr. Chidambaram (1996, 2006), his life became happier. His standard of buying chevado from Bansi sweet shop in Sector-21 has raised to buying kajukatari from Radhe Sweets.

Purushottam Prajapati, a farmer was cultivating 80 bighas of land in 1950s. His father, grand father, generations were passed their life on that land sharing 1/6 of the produces. 5/6 was the owner's share. After the land reforms, he became owner of the land. He could educate his children and one of his sons retired as a high rank government officer. His children and grand children are happy, healthy and wealthy.

Shakariben is a tribal women living in a remote village. She wear a sari with similar print and look of the sari worn by the Queen of Bhavnagar by paying Rs. 200/- only from Surat. 

Individuals had only one pair of cloths and were to get new one on Diwali day. Now each one has many colourful pairs of cloths to wear. Before independence, people wearing chappal were few, now barefooted are few.

People have ease of life. Their quality of life has gone up. Facilities of education, health, house, water, transportation, communications, comforts, varieties of food, entertainment, properties, income, money to earn, money to spend, etc, are increasing and making the life of common happier particularly in last 2 decades. 

The new generation is smarter. Learn more, earn more and spend more. They have changed the entire economy and economics of India and revolutionized it. 

Who say that we are living in Kaliyug? We are living in Satyug. Common men who were suppressed and depressed for centuries are enjoying freedom and comforts of life that many Kings and Badshah didn't have.

Do you agree?

27 November 2015

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Why are we not Hindustan?

Why are we not Hindustan?

Hindustan means the Country where the Hindus live. It's Ocean is named Hind Ocean, the rivers Sapt Sindhu are S/I/Hindu. Sindh is Hind. During British rule, the popular name of the Country was Hindustan.

The All India Muslim League (AIML) after losing the 1937 provincial elections badly against the Indian National Congress (INC), was revived under the patronage of British due to couple of political mistakes by the Congress. Fighting WW-II against Hitler was a very tough task for the British. And during that crisis period, INC started agitation raising the issue of participation of Indian troops to the war without their consent. They resigned from the provincial governments in 1939. Quit India movement (1942) during the war time was another unpleasant move of INC for the British rule. They put all the three major leaders Gandhi, Nehru and Sardar Patel behind the bars for nearly 3 years (1942-45). This distance of Congress with British during 1939-45 had created a room for Quid-e-Azam Jinnah and Muslim League to cultivate Pakistan under the patronage of British. First he advanced eleven demands, then
fourteen, then twenty-one and in the end he advanced the demand for
Pakistan. The Viceroy Lord Mountbatten was in hurry and the INC leaders were old, tired of fighting freedom struggle anymore, people were intolerant indulged in violence, therefore, the nation had not thought it possible even in dreams that Mr. Jinnah would manage to get it.

Under the Cabinet Mission Plan, in elections of 1946, Muslim League revived substantially winning most of the reserve seats (425) in provinces, compared to its defeat in the elections of 1937 (106). However it could form provincial governments only in two Prants; Bengal and Sindh. The loss of Punjab province (due to coalition government formation by Congress) made them aggressive and with Mr. Huseyn Shaheed Suharawardy (took over as PM of Bengal on 3/7/1946) behind, Mr. Jinnah launched Pakistan demand through "Direct Action Day" on 16/8/1946, that resulted into large scale communal violence in the Country. The British authorities failed to register case and initiate legal action against Mr. Jinnah or the PM of Bengal. The man who didn't spend a single day in jail for freedom movement of Hindustan was demanding Pakistan arguing "two nation" theory.

In the beginning of 11th Century, Al-Biruni (973-1048) observed the descent of native Hindus and the turk Muslims (Ashrafs) in all matters and habits. Mr. Jinnah argued the same difference for the Ajlafs (conversion from Hindus) and argued that the 'Religion' is the primary identity and unifying denominator for Muslims rather than their language or ethnicity or other commonalities with Hindus. He further argued that despite 1000 years of history, the relations between the Hindus and Muslims could not attain the level of cordiality. Two nation theory based on religion was the founding principle of Pakistan movement and that has divided Hindustan in 1947, a practical solution of India's political problem. Pakistan was created by an Ajlaf whose father (Jinabhai) was born as Hindu when Hindustan was preparing for its first war of independence in 1850s.

When the division was agreed upon, we could have continued with the name Hindustan. But idealistic people we, didn't endorse the two nation theory of Mr. Jinnah. Therefore, keeping name Hindustan, the land of Hindus, will be an indirect acceptance of Jinnah's two nation theory, Nehru proposed the new name, "Union of Indian Republic". In Gandhi's words: 

"Jawaharlal says that so long as Muslims were part of the country the name Hindustan was fine for the understanding was that anyone born in Hindustan belonged to Hindustan, whatever his religion. Now Hindustan will imply that the country belongs to Hindus. And who among the Hindus? Only the caste Hindus. But as I have said the caste Hindus—Brahmins,
Kshatriyas and Vaishyas—are a very small part of the population. The
vast majority consists of untouchables and Advivasis. Will they be ruled by the few caste Hindus? True, today it is they who rule the
roost. But if the untouchables and the Adivasis are allowed to fall under the domination of the caste Hindus, Mr. Jinnah will have been proved right in saying that a handful or caste Hindus want to keep all the rest under their heel. Could we be such fools? Could we accept the two-nation theory of Mr. Jinnah? It would mean that if my son becomes a Muslim he becomes a national of another country. If we
segregate three-quarters of our fellow country-men and keep them away from the governance of the country, our Hindustan will be just as Mr. Jinnah has pictured it. Then there will be a Parsistan, a Sikhistan, separate bits for the untouchables, the Adivasis and so forth and Hindustan will no longer remain Hindustan. It will undergo Balkanization. If this is what the English desire there will be no place left in the world for them.
So we must not weep over what has happened. Jawaharlal has suggested Union of Indian Republic as the name for the country. That is, all will live together here. If a part wants to secede we shall not force it to remain, but those that remain shall live as brothers. We shall so treat them that they will not want to break away, they will not feel that they are separate. All will be loyal to the Union and serve it." - Gandhi, Prayer meeting speech, New Delhi 12/6/47

It is therefore, we are not "Hindustan" but "India" in English and "Bharat" in Hindi as per the Constitution of India.

26 November 2015

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Balance of Development

Balance of Development

Lord Buddha taught us Nobel truths. Life is suffering. Suffering is caused by craving. Suffering can be overcome and happiness attained when we give up useless craving by following eight fold path of Perfect Understanding, Perfect Thought, Perfect Speech, Perfect Action, Perfect Livelihood, Perfect Effort, Perfect Mindfulness and Perfect Concentration.

It is said that expectation reduces joy. But look at the people around, they are craving and are full of expectations. Their desires and demands are endless. The family head, village-town head, State head, Country head, all heads are getting mad in meeting with their unlimited desires. Development is the key agenda for all. And the world of advertisements is adding fuel into the fire, increasing their desires endlessly.

Advertisers spending will reach to $600 billion in 2015. US, China, Japan, Germany and UK are the lead countries and Brazil, Canada and Mexico are also growing its share. US dominate the world with 32% share. Mobile advertising is 10% of the total at present will account for 22% and its share in digital advertising will cross 50% in 2018. The list of country and companies following the path of advertise mania is increasing. Produce, market and get them consumed is the motto of all.

In the name of quality of life, the environment is pushing the people for spending more and more to fulfill their desires of physical comforts. It demands more income, requires more economic activities, and ultimately put more stress over the natural resources. We are exploiting natural resources without their rejuvenation. 

Living in poverty and craving for the minimum needs of food (Roti), health (Dava) and shelter (Makan) with limited and seasonal activities may be called "tamas", the under utilization of human and natural resources. 

And running the world like a machine to meet with the craving of people, by over exploitation of resources, creating stress all-around may be called "rajas". The run is for what? Who knows, the bauxite exported from our coast to China, make crafts, may be exported to our neighbour and may be a cause of worry to us at the border. East India Company made us dependent for 190 years. The multinationals at present has made the world a global village and making the people dependent of their products. The world is going into the trap of economic slavery.

The balance of life is in "Satva", the balance of both, providing basic quality of life to the people, with more than hypo active world of "Tamas" and less than the hyper active world of "Rajas".

Instead of driven by the forces of advertisements, or chasing the western life style, can't we make the balance in life with do's and don't and attend the reasonable desires of the people by using the treasure of natural resources to the level of rejuvenation and accordingly run the train of development in a right gear?

After all what is the purpose of life? 

सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः सर्वे सन्तु निरामया। सर्वे भद्राणि पश्यन्तु मा कश्चित् दुःखभाग् भवेत्।।

(सभी सुखी होवें, सभी रोगमुक्त रहें, सभी मंगलमय घटनाओं के साक्षी बनें और किसी को भी दुःख का भागी न बनना पड़े।)

25 November 2015

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

A journey from Pirotan to Silicon Valley

A journey from Pirotan to Silicon Valley.

Have you been to Pirotan Island? 

An island on Gujarat coast, some 22 km (12 nautical mile) off the coast from Bedi port near Jamnagar. There is a shrine of Khwaja Khijer Pir. Pir jo than (place), therefore it is called Pirotan. Khwaja Khijer is called Jhulelal by Sindhi and Dariyalal by Hindus. His shrines are on all coasts of the world. All khalasis pray Dariyalal for their safety in the Sea. He is an immortal Pir, who comes riding a horse with a lantern in hand. When he comes, people smell incense and a sound of horses. Few people claim that they have seen and met Dariyalal! 

Pirotan island is a rich site to see marine life particularly the corals.  (Poshitra, another site is richer to watch more varieties of corals). The sand is white and apart from marine life one may watch 5000+ birds, mostly the Stiltes and Crab Provers. Sea Gulls and Pelicans also come. One may see corals during low tide but that area is mostly muddy. The sea beach is lovely, no less than Goa and Australia.

We understand that land mass can't be increased. 

But do you know that Corals make the earth? 

They are colonial animals, use sea water algae and secrete a calcium carbonate skeleton, shaped like a branching tree. Coralreefs protect and create land. The silica created by corals are used in making computer chips, the semiconductor that contains memories and millions of electronic components. It's a journey from Coral to Computer, a journey from Pirotan island to Silicon Valley.

Most coral reefs grow in shallow, sunny and agitated waters. Often called rainforests of the sea, shallow coral reefs form some of the most diverse ecosystems. Corals feed fish and other marine animals that millions of humans eat. Coral reefs, a supply of natural medicines may be used in developing drugs for humans. 

Come and visit Pirotan and Poshitra and understand the journey of nature from Coral to Computer! You can see marine life in plenty.

There is a belief that Dariyalal fulfills our wishes if prayed. Hearing this my grand daughter Kavya (6Y), while returning from Pirotan, started saying, Dariyalal, mujhe Dolphin dikhado, Dariyalal mujhe Dolphin dikhado. And surprisingly, before we end our journey of the day in the evening watching turtles at Okhamedi Centre, the Sun was setting, the sky was coloured with pale tint of orange, we were in joyous mood and we saw a dozen of Dolphins in a pod, enjoying their life in Arabian Sea in front of Kavya! 

Beauty in Nature Indeed.

24 November 2015

Monday, November 23, 2015

Temple Entrepreneurs

Temple Entrepreneurs

Do you know, Hanuman had a Son?

Brahmchari, who was celibate from the birth and had a son? 

There is a story in Valmiki Ramayana. Ram and Lakshman were taken away to Patal Lok by Ahiravan and Mahiravan, the step brothers of Ravan, during the war between Ram and Ravana. When Hanuman went to rescue them in Patal lok, he was challenged by his son, Makaradhwaj, a creature part reptile and part monkey. Hamuman was amazed with the warrior, had duel, defeated him, killed Ahiravan-Mahiravan with a trick, rescued Ram-Lakshman and established Makardhwaja as the King of Patal Lok. 

The story of Makardhwaj's birth is interesting. After burning the Lanka with his fire burning tail, when Hanuman took a dip in the waters of sea, a drop of his sweat fell into mouth of a crocodile. Out of this the Makardhwaja was born.

There is a temple of Hanuman and Makardhwaj at Hanuman Dandi, 5 kms east from Bet Dwarika, the residence of Bhagwan Shri Krishna. This is the place where Hanuman met his son Makardhwaj, first time. The idols of Hanuman and Makardhwaj (father and son) are in human form, father is on the right side of the son. Both are in joyous mood without holding any weapon. The idol of Makardhwaj is taller than Hanuman. The idol of Hanuman is going down in Patal lok by a sesame seed size every year and it will submerge when the Kaliyug ends.  

People come here and take mannat. The temple is famous for a mannat of getting a child. The couple take betel nut from the temple to worship it at home as Hanuman and return it with offering after fulfilling of their mannat.

Brahmanandji is the present Mahant of the trust managing the Hanuman Dandi temple and it's property. 

The story of Brahmanandji is very interesting. He is a Punjabi, born in Pakistan. His father was a trader in Burma. He had to leave Burma in 1942 due to WW-II. While returning, he had passed through hardships and died on the third day after reaching home in Pakistan. Due to local disturbances during partition time, the widow moved with her children to a relative's place in Jharkhand. She stitched cloths of people and took care of her children and provided them with education. 

Her son Brahmanand had serve in a company for many years, started with a salary of Rs.50, he voluntarily retired when he was earning Rs. 15000/month. He got married and has two daughters. After the death of his wife, he tried to stay with the daughters but as per Indian tradition, a father won't feel good staying at daughter's place. He started pilgrimages and one day left home forever taking his last savings of Rs. 50,000 in pocket. After staying in Shiradi for few months, he moved to this place, 25 years ago. 

He is a well read man of hindu dharmashastras. He understood the value of spiritual energy manifested in the  Ram naam mantra (Tarak Mantra) that regulates the nerves and kill animal passions. He believes that Ram Naam jap in Hanuman Dandi due to its location multiplies the benefits 1000 times. He decided to settle at Hanuman Dandi with the Mahant.

The property of the Hanuman Dandi is owned by the Bet Dwarika trust, but it has been given to the trust on 99 years lease at the rent of Rs. 25/month. When he came to this place before 25 years ago, it was not in a good condition. He has developed this place with ashram, dharmashala, and is able to feed 800 pilgrims everyday and serve food to 15000 people on festival day. The campus has accommodations, kitchen, under ground water storage tanks, public toilets, etc. He has developed the facilities with the donations and offerings coming from the people. The activities of constructions, serving pilgrims, etc are generating employment opportunities and income source to the local people. The visitors are getting facilities. He files IT returns every year.

Brahmanandji is a real entrepreneur, converted the temple into a employment and GDP generating unit. If we look at the temples and other religious organizations as units of economic activities on which many families survive, our approach to the religious organizations will change. It is better than some of the activities of modern world, those are harmful to the mental and physical health of humans.

Not only industries, trades and commerce; but temples are also the places of entrepreneurship development.

23 November 2015

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Sunday is important as working day.

Sunday is important as Working Day.

Sunday is a holiday for all the public servants in India. But it is not when there is a matter of public and national interest or to attend natural or manmade calamities.

Let us recollect the history from the letter with the Instrument of Accession to India, addressed to the Governor General of India Lord Mountbatten, written and signed by Maharaja Hari Singh at the Palace Jammu, on 26 October 1947.

Looking at J&K cultural and geographical links with both the nations and international border with Soviet Republic and China, the Maharaja wanted time to decide the option of acceding the domain of either of the Nations or to remain independent.

Eventually, Maharaja approached both the Governments for Standstill Agreement. India desired further discussions but Pakistan signed it on 14th August 1947 to maintain supply of goods and continuity in certain services like the post and telegraph.

But when Afridis, soldiers in plain clothes, and desperadose with modern weapons infiltrated in mass into the State; it was difficult to stop destruction of lives and properties, number of women were kidnapped and raped, Mahora power house was burnt, the mass infiltration of tribesmen traveling in truck with weapons through Manshera Muzaffarabad road from NWFP of Pakistan didn't stop; on the contrary, the Pakistan Radio put out a story that a Provincial Government had been set up in Kashmir; the Maharaja signed Instrument of Accession to Indian Domains to get the help to save the State from that grave emergency. (from the letter of the Maharaja)

26th October 1947, was a Sunday, a holiday for all but the most important working day for Maharaja Hari Singh and the Civil Servant Rav Bahadur VP Menon and of cource for India to have the most beautiful J&K in its Crown.

With the declaration of the package of Rs 80,000 crore for the development of Jammu and Kashmir by the Prime Minister, yesterday, the Sun will rise again for J&K to establish Jamuriyat, Insaniyat, Kashmiriyat.

Happy Diwali and Prosperous New Year Vikram Samvat 2072 to all.

Important Sunday for Bihar Today.

Happy Sunday😀


8 November 2015

Friday, November 6, 2015

Great Gandhi no parallel

Great Gandhi no parallel

Gandhiji was tried for Sedition and sentenced to six years (Ahmedabad trial 1922). He was sent to jail. The family was allowed to meet once in a month. Kasturba came to meet Gandhiji. A big table with chair on both the sides (facing each other) were placed for their meeting. Both sat facing each other. The Jailer was present but he had very high regards for Gandhi. Therefore, he left the room to provide privacy to the couple to talk freely. After half an hour when he returned, he saw the couple was sitting in silence, in the same position without any talk.

Why didn't you talk? I had given you privacy. The Jailer asked Gandhi.

As per the jail manual, we can talk only in the presence of the Jailer. As you went away, we are waiting for you to come, so that we can talk in your presence. Gandhi replied.

He was a unique leader.

6 November 2015

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Great India - 2

Great India - 2

Mahadev Desai, an Anavil Brahmin from Saras village of Surat district (Gujarat), was the Personal Secretary of Mahatma Gandhi from 13 November 1917 to 15 August 1942, till his death. He maintained a diary for all those days, chronicling his life with Gandhi. To live with Gandhi was never an easy task. Yet he became indispensable to Gandhi.

Gandhi was on visit to Puri (Orissa) in 1934. Kasturba, Durgabehn (wife of Mahadevbhai) and Mahadevbhai went to the famous temple of Lord Jagnnath of Puri, without the knowledge of Gandhiji. Mahadevbhai knew the anger of Gandhiji, therefore didn't go inside and sat on the steps of the temple. Kasturba and Durgabehn had darshana and puja of Lord Jagnnath. When Gandhi came to know, he fired them all. He sternly rebuked Mahadevbhai, that he could have at least convinced Durgabehn, that the temple which believed in segregation was not a worthy place for Darshan. Mahadev could have defended himself but he chose not to. Next day, at prayer time, Mahadev went to Gandhi, wept remorsefully and in a note addressed to him, offered to resign. Gandhi wrote back and hold him, it is better to die at the hands of a devotee…so there is no reason for you to go. Mahadev continued. Gandhiji sat on Dharana at Singh Dwar to mark his protest against the rule of the temple, not allowing the Harijans to enter.

The temple committee didn't allow Mrs Indira Gandhi (because of her marriage with a Parasi) to enter into the temple during her last visit in 1984, a day prior to her assassination. In past Saint Kabir and Guru Nanak were not allowed to enter into the temple but later permitted through the message of God to the pujari in dream.

After Quit India call by Gandhiji on 8/8/1942, he was arrested on 9/8/1942 and was sent to Agakhan Palace Jail, Pune. Mahadev Desai, Kasturba, Sarojini Naidu, Dr Sushila Nayar joined with him. 

Viceroy decision to join India in WW-II without the consent of the local provincial Government created a tug of war between Congress/Gandhi and the Viceroy Linlithgow. British were going closer to Jinnah and away from Congress/Gandhi. Gandhi started thinking to go on fast unto death. British, this time decided to counter Congress moves using Muslim League and Jinnah. 

Mahadevbhai knew that if Gandhi goes on fast, British may leave him to die. This was the worry of Mahadevbhai. He can't imagine death of Gandhiji. He couldn't sleep that week properly. He used to wake up at 1-2 AM and feeling uneasiness on bed for 2-3 hours that week. 

On 15th August 1942 morning, he woke up late and missed the morning prayer. When he was shaving in front of a mirror, Sarojini laughed at him. He was cheerful that morning but suddenly Sarojini started calling Dr Sushila Nayar to attend Mahadev.  Dr. Sushila Nayar tried some treatment but failed. Gandhi also came rushing and holding his hand and looking at his eyes shouted loudly, Mahadev utho (wake up), Mahadev..... Mahadevbhai  died of sudden cardiac arrest.

After some days, when Dr. Sushila Nayar asked Gandhiji, a person like you, completely detached, and knowing well that Mahadevbhai was no more, why did he call him, Mahadev utho? 

I was confident that if Mahadev looked at me at least for once, he would have woke up and stood up. He has never disobeyed my commands. If my words reached to his ears, he would have stood up fighting against the death, Gandhiji replied. 

Gandhiji performed holy bath to the dead body and used the same towel for drying himself after a bath. Mahadevbhai's body was cremated in Agakhan Palace itself. Gandhi used to go to the place and used the ash for tilak everyday. Gandhi didn't cry that day, but after 6 months, when Durgabehn (wife of Mahadevbhai) came to the jail and touched his feet, he broke down. He uttered "Mahadev", though he was on fasting and in silence. Gandhi's light, Mahadevbhai has gone out of his life. It was an irreparable loss.

Salute to the Great freedom fighters of our Great India.

Jai Hind.

5 November 2015

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Great India-1

Great India-1

His name was Abdul Kadir Bawazeer, a Gujarati of Arab origin. He was popularly known as Imam Saheb, as he served as Imam in South Africa. Gandhiji was also addressing him as Imam Saheb. He was a trader by profession and had a good life of luxury. 

He used to accompany clients to Gandhi's office in Johannesburg. Gandhi initially found him obstinate, but liked him more and more as he came closer. He had no education but had complete confidence in his arguments and judgment. He proved himself as steadfast as a rock in Gandhi Satyagraha. 

When Gandhi moved to Phoenix, he left all his luxuries and went with Gandhi. His wife (Haji Saheba) and two daughters (Fatima and Amina) lived a simple and vegetarian life in Phoenix Ashram with Gandhi. They were great support to Gandhi in press work. He was Gandhi's best friend in South Africa. 

In 1914, when Gandhi decided to returned to India, Imam Saheb also moved to India, though South Africa had practically become his home. They built a house near Gandhi Ashram and settled in Ahmedabad. 

When his daughter Amina got  married, Gandhiji wrote the kankotris (invitation cards) as inviter, identifying him as Imam's "sahodar" (brother). Aminaben married to Shri Gulam Rasul Kureshi.

Under the influence of Gandhi, GRK also participated in freedom struggle. He was arrested and sent to jail in Visnagar. When Aminaben went to meet him with her two children, they were waiting outside the jail, standing under a banian tree. The family meeting was allowed once in a month. The door of the jail opened and GRK came out. His son, Hamid was only 5-6 years old. When he saw GRK with unshaven faced, with a beard, little boy hid behind his mother. 

"I want to join freedom struggle with you", Aminaben demanded before her husband. 

Yes, you can, GRK replied. 

Who will take care of our children, if I go to jail? Aminaben asked. 

Leave them under the banian tree, the society will look after them, he replied.

That was the spirit of our freedom fighters and their trust over the Indian Society during Gandhian days.

Hamidbhai and Pratimaben's son (Great grand son of Imam Saheb) Shri Akil Abdul Hamid Kureshi is the sitting judge of Gujarat High Court.

Our Salute to the great freedom fighters of Great India.

Jai Hind.

4 November 2015

India Day Celebration in LBSNAA, Mussoorie

India Day Celebration in LBSNAA Mussoorie

15 November 2014, Saturday Morning was very vibrant in the campus of LBSNAA Mussoorie. It was "India Day Celebration" of 89th FC probationers of AISs. A celebration of the vibrant diversity and rich cultural histories converging at the academy.
Weather also joined the celebration with a clear day, shining Sun and the 'Queen of Hills' Mussoorie was looking the most beautiful with a commanding view of snow capped peaks of Himalayan Range (Gangotri to Badrinath) in the northeast. 
The campus was in colours as all of us wearing ethnic dresses. Flowers, Rangoli, craft bazaar adding more colours to the event.

At 9AM the "barrat procession" from Academy main gate to Kalindi Lawns started. The Director with his colleagues welcomed and received the 'baraats' coming from West, North, East and South direction of the Country. All the probationary officers of AISs were vibrant enjoying dance, music and fun of baraats with brides and bridegrooms. 
Western baraat with barrati in colourful turbans, lezim, dandia and ghumar dance groups, with 2 horses guard started first. Northern baraat in bright colours with Punjabi Bhangada, Gidda and sword play team of professionals followed them vibrantly. Eastern baraat with traditional music with a colourful Manipuri couple making colourful appearance was third in raw. And the 4th Southern baraat started with aarti and breaking coconut by the Director. His face became wet with the juice poured out of coconut. With bahurupiya Rama-Ravana and baraatis wearing masks of animals, this barrat was looking more traditional.

With lot of music, dance and colours all baraats reached Kalindi Lawns. Hunger was at the peak. All enjoyed breakfast of variety of dishes of Dhokla of West, Chhole-Bhature of North, and Vada-Idaly-Sambhar of South with many other varieties and Garma Garam Jalebi as dessert.
Meanwhile, the Director inaugurated the 'craft mela'. Award winner artisans came and are displaying their arts and crafts, "the artistic hands of India".
Amphitheatre was waiting for all of us to display the great show of Indian culture. It started with Nite Dance of Bhutan and ended with Bhangra of Punjab. The Bihari lala dance, love story of Jignesh-Suman with villain RaPa, powerful girls of Punjab dancing Gidda, Kollattam and drum bitting dances of AP and South, classical dance of Kerala and rustic police station of Haryana made our afternoon joyful. The Sun was shining at its peak and probationers here were performing at their best.
Not so hungry but it was a hospitality lunch in Indian style (sit down and eat) arranged by the FC officers with many Indian varieties of food; Payasam from Kerala, Sarsoka da saag and Makkedi roti from Punjab, Chhole-Biryani-Roti-Paratha- from North, baghara bengan from AP, Sweet coconut roti with ghee from Karnataka, Rasam from TN, NV items, a long list to narrate. "India Together" with Gajar Halwa and Sweet/Salty Lassi made our belly full. The lunch and event completed with offering sonf-sugar and thanks with a smiling faces of 89th FC officers.

A memorable event of life, seamlessly enjoyed.

Punamchand, '85, Ph-5
15 November 2014

Last Day in Estonia, a Tasteless last supper without Ms. Annela.

Last Day in Estonia, a Tasteless Last Supper without Ms. Annela.
First session of last day in Tallinn started with e-Government in Justice by Mr. Ingmar Vali. A company registration in just 18 minutes on company registration portal paying 185 euro by fiiling up details and altering few lines in Articles of Association without submission of documentations, without notary, without personal interface and getting your company registered online in just 2 hours time by the Assistant Judge (exofficio Registrar) proved that the administration of Estonia is committed to lead in e-Governance. The facility of making accounts online and annual report submission made the system company friendly.
Our IPS officer Kuldeep Singh find the lecture very interesting. I was wondering but suddenly show him with Ms. Katlin Kattai, a companion of Mr. Ingvar Vali and Head of International Relations. The son of Sardar from the very first day jogging, hopping on and hopping off, steaming and swimming to find a suitable solution for his visit to Estonia, found a quick response today at last. His fingers scratching his head all the time once again scratched forcefully, which trick worked today? How has this happened? Atul stopped all taking seat besides Kuldeep in bus as Ms. Helena was to sit with him. The Son of Sardar finally made his day to celebrate last evening in Estonia with joy of Balle Balle.
The visit to Estonian Land Board and sessions on geodetic land mapping by Mr. Andres Juss and Land Valuation by Mr. Kristian Teiter were interesting. The method of aerial mapping through helicopters using private agencies found expensive. Land price fixed lastly in 2001 deprived the government from earning better registration income.
Our lunch in a small restorant Mecorty was delicious with Salmon to NVs and bit sandwich with colourful peeled potato to Vs. Home made candy icecream with lovely presentation made our lunch complete. 
A short visit to the host institute, E Governance Academy, meeting staff and taking photographs of the corridors and small Tutanhemon museum (replica of Egypt) got us a feel of vibrancy of the institute in generating e-Governance ideas in Estonia.
The training concluded with a post lunch short and smart presentation by Ms. Mary Pedak on National Identity Card and electronic identification was very interesting.
Ms. Annela Kirrats, Training Manager and the group favourite dressed up today in shining lemon yellow suite, wearing gold chain with big white pearl earings, maked up in dark eyelash, put on black sweater and black shoes was looking dashing and beautiful. Her small interventions to explain ID got an opportunity to clicked her with Vinay Thakur, the group coordinator. He will place the photo in his drawing room as a souvenir of the tour. She looks like a model, many murmured.
Mr. Ivar Tallo and Mr. Arvo Ott concluded our training with presenting certificates. Partho clicked all of us in his Nikon SLR. Annela first presented a chocolate to the only lady participant Mona and later to all of us for not discriminating us on gender bias. Finally, the training ended with a group photo.
The last evening in Tallinn, we remembered our beloved in India, started hurried shopping from old town, Viru Keskus and Stockmann. As Estonia is very famous for its milk production and chocolates, many of us bought chocolates. Some did try expensive cloths and sportswear.
At Viru Keskus my meeting with Ibo Scodovsky surprised me as he loves Krishna and India. Wearing tulsi mala, he invited us at Hare Krishna temple near National Library in Tallinn. Every Sunday, Hare Krishna Bhakts come at 2 PM, do kirtana, listen Geeta and enjoy prasad of Lord Krishna.
The Last Supper at Hotel Solaris without Annela was tasteless. It was pre booked dinner. Vegetarians fed up with  bit sandwich, pilled and fried potatos as the same with better taste they ate in lunch today. Non-vegetarian were also not happy as the chicken was tasteless. As half the order was for vegetarian dishes, non vegetarian were unhappy with veg dishes coming to them. Vivek Kamat objected getting shared chicken. The eyerise technology marked his eye movement but the dinner presented his brain.
Beer, wine, chicken, sandwich, cake, salad, all found tasteless. All were touching, tasting and giving up. The Last Supper in Tallinn was tasteless without Allena!!!
Exotic Estonia and its Training Manager marked permanently in our memories. 
Enjoyed the training, visits, food, stay and beauty of Estonia. And returning home with the sweet memories of e-Governance Training in Estonia, the ICT nation of North Eastern Europe.
28 August 2014

Discover Your Inner Einstein

"Discover Your Inner Einstein".
Walled by prisoners but spread by Students Innovations, the MECTORY (Modern Estonian Knowledge Transfer Organisation for you) is unique study centre started under the Tallinn Technical University. It gives freedom to the participants to discover his/her inner Einstein. International students and delegates from countries Japan, China, India, Australia, etc come here and learn innovative techniques. A small but equipped centre is picking up its popularity.
The Centre has started a Post Graduation programme (MSc) in E-Governance and Technology and Studies with 50 seats, free of cost for first two years. It gives students broad knowledge about the meetings of a modern State- the transition into e-Governance, its management and development. Graduate can be future e-Government technologist, architects, developers and analysts.
Foreigners/Indian students can apply before 1 May every year. The academy provides dormitory accommodation at 120 euro/month. Transport for students is free. Food may cost 100-300 euro depending upon one cooks or eats in restaurants. Students are given ID which is residence cum work permit. No restrictions on working hours. Students can work as many as hours he/she wishes provided don't bunk classes.
As our group is in departure mode, a farewell dinner was arranged at Hotel Villa Marry. The drive from Hotel Meriton to Hotel Villa Marry by small cabs and driving through the new city and coastal line under the beautiful colours of setting Sun and sharabi songs from the seasoned and sweet voice of Shri Vineet Pandey made the short journey memorable. How come, Mirza Galib and all these people found out so many positive arguments in favour of drinking "sharab", thinking "shabab" and eating "kabab"!
Many of us were going mad taking photos of the the Hotel, its view on the shore of Baltic Sea in the photography time, comparing it with Goa. Partho didn't miss clicking beauty of Estonia.
The man of the day was Sanjeev Jha, as the group favourite Ms. Annela gave the most time of the day to him.
The Ambassador of Estonia to India, Viljar Luby delighted the dinner with his present and speech saying there are 1000 Indians behind 1 Estonian. His praise for India on its Marketing Skill and Scaling up was noteworthy.
The dinner was rich as usual with champagne, starter (prones, brinjal, vegetables), main course (fish, chicken, vegetables), white and red wines, dessert (fried banana with ice cream and black coffee). Over eaten still dreaming not to miss Old Hansa on Thursday night to have medieval time dinner with honey beer !!!
Enjoyed Estonia, the country of patriotism and leader in ICT.

Punamchand Parmar
Tallinn 27 August 2014

Republic of Korea, A model of Spectacular Growth

Republic of Korea, A Model of Spectacular Growth
Republic of Korea (South Korea) a peninsula with 100,140 sq km area of which mountain cover is 70%, with a population of 48 million people among them 47% have no religion, 23% Buddhist, 18% Protestants, 11% Catholics, 1% other religion. It is well known in the world with its spectacular growth in the last 30 years. Freedom of religion is guaranteed by the Constitution in Korea. As a result, large numbers of people believe in no religion, concentrating on their present life with comforts and happiness.

A Mongolian race people are simple and social like Asian culture. Males earn and give money to the wives and enjoy food and drinks. (they bow down to their wives for demanding money and love: ton juseyo, sarange juseyo everyday!) The females are the backbone of the country as they look after family, finance, farming and jobs.

Rice still remains the staple of most Koreans. Korean meal accompanied by various side dishes. A Korean traditional meal is not complete without kimchi, a mixture of various pickled vegetables such as Chinese cabbage, radish, green onion and cucumber. Kimchi are prepared with red chili powder and garlic and are soaked in a tasty liquid. People didn’t get vegetables for many months due to the cold climates. Tin late November or early December, Korean families used to prepare enough kimchi to last long winter. The kimchi was stored in large clay jars partially buried to maintain temperature and retain flavour. Now there are refrigerators to preserve kimchi. It is considered hot food with lot of red chilies (not near to the hotness of Indian food). People eat everything including fish, cells, crabs, octopus, chicken, duck, pork, dogs, etc. Pork and coffee become popular in the new generation Koreans.

The creation of Hangul in the early Joseon period was a key turning point in the history of Korean literature. King Sejong the Great (1392-1450), one of the wisest and most outstanding kings of Korean history has developed Korean written language ‘Hangul’ with the help of scholars. The Korean alphabet has 24 characters; 14 consonants and 10 vowels. They are unique because, consonants are made by following the shape of the pronunciation organ and vowels are made by combining of 3 elements '',which symbolize the sun, earth and people, the most fundamental features in the universe. Every Korean word is made of the combinations of the consonants and vowels. For us few sentences were important. ‘an nyong ha se yo’ to greet; ‘ol ma ye yo’ to ask price; ‘kka kka ju se yo’ to demand discount and ‘gam sa Ham ni da’ for thanks.  

A Japanese Colony from 1910-1945 was liberated in 1945 was almost destroyed in civil wars between 1950-53 and got divided into North Korea and South Korea following Communist Government and Capitalist Government respectively. Russia supported the North Korean communist troops to destroy South Korea. USA guarded South Korea against the attacks. Approximately 28000 USA soldiers are camped here to guard the country. Both the brother countries spending very huge amount of budget on their defense, the same like Pakistan and India. United together, Korea can surpass Japan.   

South Korea has followed Capitalist Economic Policies of Export Oriented Industrialization; Industrial sequencing starting from Labour Intensive Industries (Textiles, Garments, toys, etc.) to Capital Intensive Industries (Electronics, Car, Ship, Oil Refinery, Civil Works, etc.) to High Value Added Industries. It has 10% large, 20% medium and 70% small industries. The size of the economy is 15th in the world. It’s export ratio is 43.4%. Samsung, LG, Hyundai, PASCO are the market leaders in the field of electronics & home appliances, car and constructions respectively.

A story of Samsung started with a small company to make black & white TV in 1969, now reached to earn revenue of $148.9 billion with operating profit of $14.7 billion in 2011 is very encouraging for any entrepreneur. It is global no.1 in TV, monitor, smart phone, DRAM, DDI, NAND Pash; global no.2 in printer and LCD panels. Sony of Japan is trailing in losses and Samsung is competing with Apple. A thrilling story of a poor young man stealing a cow from his father sold it and came to a city, working in a rice shop, lifting bags on shoulders and moving with a bicycle, developed a giant industry PASCO in construction industries is one of the examples of the Korean’s strength and dedication to grow.    

In 1963, workers in the agriculture, forestry and fishery sectors accounted for 63% of the total labour force. This figure dropped to 6.6% in 2010. By contrast the share of tertiary industry grew from 28.3% of employed people in 1963 to 76.4% in 2010. In the 1970s and 1980s, the government focused on the cultivation of a skilled workforce.

Its President Park, Chung Lee (1960-1978) who gave a mold to the country to follow path of Development Dictatorship said, “In human life, economics precedes politics or culture.” Large number of people believes that religion is an obstruction against growth as it kills desire of the people to become the best.

The country with a GNI Per Capita $63 in 1953, $1000 in 1977, $11385 in 1995, $7000 in 1997 (financial crisis), $20320 in 2007 has reached to $29010 in 2010. It was a country receiving Grant-in aid in form of consumer goods till 1960; received development assistance in form of technical cooperation & loans during 1960-70; and a Donor country since 1990. It has established Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) in 1991 and Join OECD/DAC in 2010.

It has organized Asian Games in 1986, Olympic Games in 1988. Korean youths are very good in Archery, wrestling, judo, taekwondo, badminton, boxing, shooting, TT, weightlifting and handball.

Some say that Korea is an American puppy.  They are copying America. Christian faith has made strong inroads into the country. Coffee has replaced tea. People prefer pork to sea food. They have followed the same democratic model of USA with a directly elected President and two parliamentary houses, Congress and Senate. American President lives in White House, Korean President Lives in Blue House. USA started FEMA (Federal Emergency Management System), Korea started NEMA (National Emergency Management System). But Koreans are marching ahead copying Americans in the interest of the people of Korea.
Korea has a lot to offer visitors; a peninsular country with picturesque valleys, mountains, rivers, beaches, ancient temples, royal palaces, sculptures, pagodas, archeological sites, fortresses, folk villages and museums. Seoul the capital is the world’s 10thlargest city with the glistering facades of soaring skyscrapers and bustling traffic represent its vibrant present. Busan is the second largest metro city with beautiful beaches located at the southeast of the country. Jeju, a honeymoon island is the centre of tourist attractions.

Don’t miss a chance visiting Republic of Korea, A Model of Spectacular Growth.  

Gam sa ham nida

Punamchand Parmar, INDIA
Participant of training programme "Climate Change & Disaster Prevention", 29 March 2012 to 18 April 2012.

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