Page 1

11-17 January 2013

Vol. 2 No. 21  Pages 24  ` 7

{Inside} Education Apartheid

RNI No. HARENG/2011/39319, Postal Regn. No. GRG/35/2012-2014

DLF Under Spotlight

Time for the Real Estate Regulation Bill

PRAKHAR PANDEY

T

he underprivileged – and that too schoolchildren continue to be denied their Right. Both by the State and by private schools. No school has taken any action under the RTE guidelines, though the deadline was December 31st. ...Pg 8

Roads Are Not For Walking

T

he police have met with some success – a big gang has been recently nailed. However, this crime remains the easiest to commit, and the hardest to solve. It has also added to the insecurity of women, on top of the other pressures they face on the road. ...Pg 9

Best Of Wellness

W

e update you on all that we covered in 2012. You can check out the articles at www.fridaygurgaon.com. ...Pg 15

TO SUBSCRIBE

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has passed a supplementary order modifying the Apartment Buyer’s Agreement entered into between DLF and the (DLF Belaire) apartment allottees. This supplementary order relates to the order of the Hon’ble Competition Appellate Tribunal (COMPAT) of March 29, 2012, by which CCI was directed to pass an order specifying the extent and manner in which the terms and conditions of the Apartment Buyer’s Agreement need to be modified. CCI, in its supplementary order, after considering the modified terms of the Apartment Buyer’s Agreement submitted by both parties, has modified the terms of that Agreement in a manner which it considers fair and reasonable, and takes into account the interest of both parties. CCI, in its earlier order dated August 12, 2011 had held that DLF Ltd. was a dominant enterprise which had violated the provisions of Section 4 of the Competition Act 2002, by entering into an agreement with apartment allottees that was one sided, abusive and unfair to the allottees. Accordingly the Apartment Buyer’s Agreement has been amended such that the abusive and unfair conditions present in the original onesided agreement have been removed. CCI has also considered the relevant provisions of the laws applicable to the development of group housing projects in Haryana, particularly the mandatory requirements which must be followed by every developer/builder, but which were not followed by DLF Ltd. in this case. CCI has found in the Belaire case that: DLF is dominant in Gurgaon, in the relevant market. DLF has abused that dominance. There are many one-sided clauses, biased in favour of DLF, in the Apartment Buyer’s Agreements, which need to be changed/dropped. Changes have been made in the project at the sole discretion of DLF, without taking approval from, or even informing, current buyers. DLF has commenced the project without obtaining all the necessary formal sanctions/approvals. There has been inordinate delay in the completion of the project. Some buyers have had to forfeit payments made by them. There is a complete contrast in the rates charged by DLF from

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CCI has defined the rights and obligations of Builders and Buyers, as per the Laws for Group Housing relevant to Gurgaon, Haryana: namely, the Haryana Development & Regulation of Urban Areas Act, 1975; Haryana Development & Regulation of Urban Areas Rules, 1976; Haryana Urban Development Authority (Erection of Buildings) Regulations, 1979; and the Haryana Apartment Ownership Act (HAOA),1983. Based on the above Laws, CCI has recommended changes and deletions/additions in the Apartment Buyer's Agreement. More importantly it has emphasized the very basis for development of a Group Housing scheme in Gurgaon, as follows: ‘A colonizer or builder only acts as a developer, and has no right or concern left in the property once the group housing has been developed and apartment charges (including EDC, IDC etc.) are paid. Common areas in a complex belong to the apartment owners, and are meant for their common use. Builders can only keep those facilities that they own, and did not charge for from the Buyers, while calculating the super area. The apartment owners of a complex jointly become owners of the entire land for which FAR is utilized (for the construction of the complex). Therefore any increase in FAR devolves to the apartment owners, and cannot be used by Builders – much less use it to club with their other projects. Contd on p 4 

Here Comes The Sun

You would have sampled Friday Gurgaon during the year. Here is your chance to get FG at your doorstep every Friday, at a very attractive rate.

Buyers, versus that paid to Buyers (about 15% to 1% p.a.)...and some other points. DLF has decided to appeal.

PRAKHAR PANDEY

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

I

f the Haryana government takes solar power seriously, the power deficit could soon be a thing of the past, believes Manoj Upadhayay, CEO of Acme Telepower Solutions. Upadhyay, whose company will be producing close to 100 MW of Solar Power by next year, says that Gurgaon has a great opportunity to harness the potential of the Sun. “The major challenge is to change the perception that solar power is costly; or that energy can be produced by only the government,” says Upadhayay. India needs to aggressively embrace solar power, because it has almost gained parity with other energy production technologies – including coal and diesel. In Upadhayay's opinion, if the government introduces the concept of net metering in Gurgaon, whereby the rooftop producers can share the power produced with the main grid, then it would become very easy to popularise this alternative form of energy. The Haryana government needs to emulate Gujarat, Contd on p 5  which is the country leader


02 RNI No. HARENG/2011/39319 Postal Regn. No. GRG/35/2012-2014 VOL.–2 No.–21  11-17 January 2012

Editor:

Atul Sobti

Sr. Correspondents: Abhishek Behl Shilpy Arora Correspondent:

Maninder Dabas

Sr. Photographers: Prakhar Pandey Jit Kumar Sr. Sub Editor:

Anita Bagchi

Sr. Designer:

Amit Singh

Designer:

Virender Kumar

Sr. Circulation Execs.: Himanshu Vats Syed Mohd Komail Circulation Execs.:

Special

11-17 January 2012

Pankaj Yadav Sunil Yadav Manish Yadav

Accts. & Admin Mgr: Deba Datta Pati Asst. Manager Media Marketing: Bhagwat Kaushik Sr. Exec Media Marketing:

Vikalp Panwar

Ad Sales Exec :

Amit Agarwal

Consulting Art Editor: Qazi M. Raghib Editorial Office 213, Tower A, Spazedge, Sector 47, Sohna Road, Gurgaon 122001, Haryana Phones: +91 124 421 9092/93 Emails:

editor@fridaygurgaon.com letters@fridaygurgaon.com contributions@fridaygurgaon.com subscription@fridaygurgaon.com circulation@fridaygurgaon.com adsales@fridaygurgaon.com events@fridaygurgaon.com marketing@fridaygurgaon.com Friday Gurgaon (Weekly) edited, published and printed by Atul Sobti on behalf of Arap Media Ventures Pvt. Ltd. from 213, Tower A, Spazedge, Sector 47, Sohna Road, Gurgaon 122018, Haryana. Printed at Indian Express Ltd. Plot No. A8, Sector 7, Gautam Budh Nagar, NOIDA – 201301, Uttar Pradesh

The views expressed in the opinion pieces and/or the columns are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, Friday Gurgaon or Arap Media Ventures Pvt. Ltd.

4U 4

Tips

THE WEEK THAT WAS ♦ Air Quality monitoring has started in the City, with equipment having been set up at Vikas Sadan. ♦ All Paying Guest (PG) accommodations and Guest Hoses in HUDA Sectors will face closure, as per direction of the DC, PC Meena. The DC office has stated that the running of residential plots for commercial purposes is not permitted under HUDA rules, and the owners of the plots have also been wrongly availing all civic amenities at noncommercial rates. The PGs/Guest Houses further disturb the peace in the residential areas. As per HUDA rules, commercial activity is possible in only 25% space on a ground floor, and that too for specified ‘non-nuisance’ activities (eg. office for property dealer, architect, consultant…). ♦ Jamabandis (land records) of all the villages of District Gurgaon are now available on-line at http:// jamabandi.nic.in. DC PC Meena has asked for the integration of the Haryana Registration Information System (HARIS) and Haryana Land Record Information System (HALRIS) by 31st March this year. This will help in checking fraud in the sale of land in the district, and the incorporation of the name of the buyers in the mutation register would be simplified. ♦ The District Level Vigilance and Monitoring Committee is presided over by Rao Inderjeet Singh, MP from Gurgaon. A project of Rs 16.29 crores, for the conservation of 12,373 hectares – through 21 micro-watersheds - is identified under the Integrated Watershed Management Programme (IWMP). Progress of other schemes – Accelerated Rural Water Supply Programme (ARWSP), MP Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS), Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) and Indira Awas Yojna (IAY) – is also reviewed. ♦ CM launches the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme in Haryana, from Manesar. 2 student beneficiaries from Hisar are given Rs 500 each through electronic transfer of funds, under the Central Govt Special Coaching Scheme of the Ministry of Labour and Employ-

by ShahnaZ

ment. The students withdraw the money using their Aadhaar card numbers, after their fingerprints are verified. ♦ Haryana will soon set up a State Commission/Panel for the Protection of Child Rights. ♦ At the inauguration of Modern Diagnostic & Research Centre, Sec 44, the Health Minister Rao Narender Singh states that Haryana has started the usage of Pentavalent Vaccine. ♦ The Haryana Govt will now give Rs 11,000 to all eligible (over 18 years) brides, if they participate in a mass marriage. ♦ 2 women die as their balcony collapses in Kanhai Village. ♦ A security guard is beaten up at a construction site – dies in hospital. ♦ A 19-year-old student commits suicide. ♦ A man is booked for raping his daughter-in-law. ♦ A man who assaults and tries to rape a minor (2 ½ year old) is caught later. ♦ A pizza delivery boy is stabbed. ♦ 6 are arrested for running a flesh trade business in a hotel on Old Delhi Road. ♦ A doctor couple is booked for land fraud; they were selling the same house to multiple people; 4 others are booked for selling land using fake documents. ♦ The accused in Ruchi Bhuttan case is being treated with kid gloves and even using a mobile phone in jail, says the defence. ♦ A man is booked for duping an insurance company of almost Rs 10 lakhs, by depositing a customer cheque in his wife’s account. ♦ A domestic help steals cash and jewellery worth Rs 20 lakhs on first day at work. ♦ A domestic help runs away with Rs 2.5 lakhs. ♦ Rapid Metro Phase II has been cleared, for the Sikanderpur to Golf Course Road Extension Tpoint route. The 7km Metro route will have 6 stations, and will be built at a cost of Rs 2,143 crores. The expected completion timeline is end 2015. ♦ There is a proposal to prevent heavy vehicles from entering MG Road. They will be diverted from

Herbal Cosmetic Queen Padma Shree Shahnaz Husain is the CEO of the Shahnaz Husain Group – India’s leading company in the field of natural beauty and anti-aging treatments. Q. My dandruff problem seems to be returning. Is there any way I

get get rid of it completely?

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You have to learn how to take care of dandruff prone hair. Wash your hair with a mild herbal shampoo three or four times a week, using less shampoo and rinsing very well with water. Half an hour before shampoo, apply two tablespoons vinegar on the scalp, massaging it lightly into the scalp. Once a week, heat olive oil or til oil and apply on the scalp at night. Leave on overnight. Next morning, apply the juice of a lemon on the scalp and wash the hair after 20 minutes. Weekly henna treatments will also help. Include fresh fruits, raw salads, sprouts and yogurt in your daily diet. Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water daily. Add the juice of a lemon to a glass of water and have it first thing in the morning.

WINNER Kevin Stephen

Ask the beauty expert questions on skin, hair and beauty. The best question (picked by Shahnaz Husain) will receive a gift hamper from the Shahnaz Husain Group. Write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com

Rajiv Chowk, and proceed via Sohna Road and Golf Course Ext Road on to MG Road, to reach Delhi – and the return route, for vehicles coming from Delhi via MG Road. 5000 plus vehicles ply on this route every day. ♦ Northern Peripheral Road (NPR) is now expected to be completed by 2015. ♦ A licence of Pal Infrastructure and Developers, for a building project, is cancelled. ♦ A shopkeeper and 5 citizens are challaned for using plastic bags. Industry in promised uninterrupted power. ♦ The City faces severe cold weather and fog – with a 0 degree temperature recorded on Sunday.

Friday Gurgaon has completed a year. Time to Renew your Friday Gurgaon Subscription. 52 issues (1 Year), for ` 200 (Two Hundred) Only – a Saving of ` 164 on cover price.

Send an email to subscription@fridaygurgaon.com Pay Online at www.fridaygurgaon.com Circulated only in Gurgaon. Special offer for rest of NCR: ` 300 for 6 months (delivery through courier)

Date: Jan 13 Time: 7:30 pm Programme: Lohri Celebrations Date: Jan 16 Time:7:30 pm Programme: Thumri recital by Iman Das. Date: Jan 17 Time:7:30 pm Programme: Sarod recital by Anupam Shobhakar.

Art

Date: Jan 18-20 Programme: Kalaagman, an Exhibition of paintings.

DANCE

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C eleb W atch

11-17 January 2013

Soulful Healing

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03

Sunday Open

picentre hosted Tantra Healing, an evening of soulful music on the Sitar, by Acharya Biswajit. The musical evening was a tribute to Pt. Ravi Shankar. Biswajit was accompanied by Sukant Bajpaye on the tabla & Niranjan Rao on the sankha and ghantee.

Merit Of Safety

G

urgaon Traffic Police, in partnership with Meritnation.com (India's largest online learning platform), celebrated 'Traffic Safety Week'. The Traffic Police delivered a message of road safety—to school kids, their parents and teachers—with the help of informative posters and the distribution of pamphlets.

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04  Contd from p 1

11-17 January 2013

DLF Under Spotlight

Since each apartment owner is a part owner of the Common Areas & Facilities, he/she would need to pay the insurance, tax and maintenance on his/her complete area (apartment area plus share of common area). Builders need to first take care of local infrastructure, for water, drainage, sewage and electricity; and also construct the agreed health, educational, cultural and recreational amenities – using the funds taken from Buyers under the head of IDC. Builders should maintain the complexes for a maximum of 5 years after development of local civic infrastructure, or till an RWA takes over. Interest Bearing Maintenance Security (IBMS) must be handed over by the Builders to elected RWAs. Builders must pay for the maintenance of unsold apartments even after the RWAs have taken over. Further: Builders must offer an escalation free price to a Buyer. The non-payment of EDC or Service tax, by a Buyer,

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

T

he DLF vs Belaire Owners’ Association case, being heard by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) for the last one and half years, might lead to a paradigm shift in how the Indian Real Estate industry operates in the times to come. The buyer friendly recommendations made by CCI in its January 3 Supplementary Order, which came after DLF appealed to COMPAT (Competition Appellate Tribunal), as to what should be the extent and manner of changes in the Apartment Buyer’s Agreement, have no doubt sent ripples across the industry. Apparently the CCI had to move a step forward and delve not only into issues related to dominance and abuse, but also the legality of the entire Buyer’s Agreement, in the context of the law of the land prevailing in Haryana. The Competition Commission of India is a body of the Government of India responsible for enforcing The Competition Act, 2002 throughout India, and has only the COMPAT and Supreme Court to review its orders. Earlier, DLF had filed a complaint with COMPAT, against a CCI order imposing a Rs. 630 crores penalty on DLF, for abusing its dominance in the Gurgaon residential market. The order came after complaints to the Commission were filed against the company by DLF Park Place and The Belaire Owners’ Association. CCI has proposed a very strong buyer-friendly Agreement. As many as sixteen clauses of the original Buyer’s Agreement have been deleted by the Commission, and many changed, to make them ‘fit’ as per the law. B.K Dhawan, President Emeritus of the Silver Oaks RWA, says that the CCI order has reiterated what the Haryana Apartment Owners Act 1983 clearly asks the builders to do. “This is a historic order, as no other government agency or court has clarified the issues with this kind of surgical precision. The order makes

C over S tory

There have been no Completion Certificates issued to date – in over 25 years ! Builders do not comply with all the terms and conditions of the Licences issued/ Approvals given; there is very little checking done by DTCP. DTCP needs to share the details of FAR taken project wise, builder wise to date – and any changes made in FAR subsequently. When the proposed (by CCI), or some more refined, new clauses and Apartment Buyer’s Agreement take effect, we need to beware builders finding excuses for cancellation or abandonment of projects, in case prices have increased substantially from those already taken from buyers. Each case must be thoroughly checked by an independent regulator.

it clear what the builder can do, what he can not do, what are the responsibilities of an RWA, and what are the rights and obligations of an apartment owner,” asserts Dhawan. Although DLF has already made it clear that it will contest the decision, and questioned the jurisdiction of CCI, regarding the framing of a Buyer’s Agreement, observers say that this case will definitely mark a turnaround in how the industry functions. While some competition law experts have questioned the decision of CCI – of going out of its purview of competition, market dominance, and its abuse – there are several who opine that the entire exercise was carried out on the instructions of COMPAT, after an appeal was filed by DLF. Vaibhav Ghaggar, lawyer for the Belaire Flat Owners’ Association, says that the recommendations made by CCI are based on strong legal ground, and can stand judicial scrutiny at the highest level. “The CCI order is a small but a strong step, in helping the buyers stand against the might of the builders,” he asserts. An important clause is that a builder will no longer have the sole right to appoint an arbitrator, in case of a dispute with the buyer. Ghaggar says that this was a major relief, because a stakeholder in a dispute should not be allowed to appoint the referee. Builders will also have to attach a copy of their Licence Agreement and approved plans and layouts with every Buyer’s Agreement. While describing the CCI order as a welcome step, Dhawan says that CCI could have brought more clarity into issues like Super Area and FAR. “If the government and the real estate industry want to clean the Augean stables then these technicalities should be included in the LC IV agreement signed between the builder and the Department of Town and Country Planning (DTCP), Haryana. The common man does not understand these legal

issues, and this ignorance of law is used by the realtors to control every aspect of the business,” asserts Dhawan. For many apartment buyers who have faced and suffered the intransigence of builders, the recommendations made by CCI are a bright ray of hope. Amit Jain, Director General of the Federation of Apartment Owners Associations (FAOA) says that this order has paved the road, and shown the right direction, to the real estate industry in the country. “It is clear that apart from dominance and competition, the issues pertaining to the ownership of apartments have come into the legal domain. The CCI has not adjudicated a consumer dispute, but laid the foundation of a framework around which realty can operate. This framework is also based on a sound legal foundation,” says Jain. Jain says that CCI has made it clear that builders will have to define the carpet area and the super area which they are offering to the buyers. Amit Jain adds that by making the ‘time is essence’ clause applicable to both builders and buyers, CCI has ensured that builders will have to focus on timely constructions, while demanding timely payments from the buyers. “The parity as far as penalty is concerned will go a long way in helping the buyers,” he asserts. Dhawan alleges that builders, taking advantage of the weakness of DTCP, have been taking the apartment owners for a ride, and have violated the Haryana Apartment Owners Act with impunity. “Not even a single apartment complex has been legally transferred to owners in Gurgaon. There has not been a single instance where a Completion Certificate has been obtained by a builder, as the Department of Town and Country Planning is just looking the other way,” he says.

Legality, Dominance, Competition and Abuse

Noted competition lawyer Pradip Mehta told Friday Gurgaon that the recommendations and modifications in the Apartment Buyer’s Agreement made by

cannot lead to a cancellation of allotment or re-possession of an apartment. Project plans cannot be changed without the approval of the Buyers. Schools, Community Centres, Hospitals, Clubs are to be developed by Builders, or the designated land should be handed over free to the govt. Builders are entitled to a maximum net profit after tax of 15% of the total project cost of development of a colony. The surplus should either go to the govt., or be invested for providing further amenities in the colony.’ All of the above is very clearly enunciated in the Laws. The problem is that the Administration (esp DTCP) has chosen to ignore its role – and so the rule of law has not prevailed. Irrespective of the course of this legal battle, many clear gaps between law and practice are out there now (including the very foundation), validated by a very competent and powerful Central Govt Authority. Would the State and Central Govt not like to take cognizance even now? This is clearly pointing to corruption of a very high order, with the extent probably in the thousands of crores!

CCI were welcome and legally tenable, as the Commission has made recommendations on the instructions of COMPAT. “This decision will have industry-wide ramifications, and could help in bringing more transparency and accountability into the system. This Model Agreement came out as part of the appeal process, and it is a positive instrument,” he asserts. Sanjay Sharma of Qubrex says that this order has now shifted the focus from ‘dominance and its abuse’, to the much bigger question of whether such behaviour and acts of a builder could stand legal scrutiny. “Has the behaviour changed, or it is still illegal, is the question to be understood. The experts who are calling for COMPAT to decide on the dominance issue first, before looking at what the Supplementary Order has to say, are missing the forest for the trees,” he asserts. Under the changed circumstances, Sharma says, issues which were being checked for dominance and abuse earlier—such as increase in the number of Belaire floors from 19 to 29—are now being seen as a violation of law. The sale of parking slots, by builders, and their holding on to common areas such as schools, community centres, and clubs is also wrong, in the eyes of the law.

Impact on the Builder

The quest for a regulator in the Indian Real Estate industry has become all the more stronger after it was pointed out by the Competition Commission of India that the majority of Apartment Buyer’s Agreements were not in consonance with the existing law, and needed to be changed to make them fair. The CCI order on January 3, which came on the instructions of COMPAT in the DLF Vs Belaire case, makes it very clear that certain clauses of the Agreements are out -rightly ultra vires the extant law of the land. People close to the real estate industry say that the CCI order is certainly

going to rattle the builders, particularly if more RWAs approach the Courts, seeking alterations in the Buyer’s Agreements, on the principles suggested by CCI in this case. The decision of the CCI to bring the interest charged by builders at par with that which is paid to buyers, will open a can of worms for the real estate developers, claims Vineet Singh, Business Head, 99 acres. Singh says that this CCI order marks a paradigm shift, in the sense that it balances the property buying process, which till now was heavily in favour of the builders. It also drives home the point that no company or a sector, just by virtue of its size and power, can annul the basic rights of a seemingly powerless single buyer. Another bone of contention, he says, would be the recommendation of the CCI that the builder will not have any perpetual administrative interference or financial claim on the project; in fact the builder would not have any right in the complex after the price of the apartment, the EDC, and other charges have been duly paid. “This clause could have mixed implications for projects that offer amenities such as a clubhouse or a golf course, that charge a separate fee for using these facilities. If it is found that a developer has already passed on the development cost of these facilities to the allottees jointly, an additional membership fee might be challenged,” says Singh. He further says that it is likely that a number of builders share the same terms as DLF in their Buyer’s Agreements. Putting an equal onus of responsibility on both the builders and buyers, the CCI order states “The Commission considers that the defaults can be on the part of the company as well on the part of the allottees, and the Agreement should provide for defaults of both the parties, and the Agreement must be equitable in dealing Contd on p 5 


11-17 January 2013

 Contd from p 4 with both the sides, and levy of interest /penalty should of equal level on both sides.”

What the Builders say

The Builder community has given a mixed reaction to the CCI order. The industry perhaps is studying the implications of the proposed modifications. While some of the builders have termed it as a welcome move, others opine that this will further increase the cost of apartments and housing, making life difficult for the owners. Lalit Kumar Jain, President of CREDAI, has said that the builders will work with the CCI to come out with a Model Agreement, but he has also maintained that the payment of penalty will always remain disputable. The builders are also questioning the stipulations, such as use of 30 per cent of payments by allotees for internal development of public amenities at ‘builders own cost, and a

restriction on profit making to 15 per cent. All these stipulations might go against the functioning of an open market economy, claims Singh of 99 acres. Neeraj Gulati, MD, Assoctech Builders says that the environment is challenging – it takes more than a year for getting a project approval, as the builder has to approach multiple windows; the bank interests are high, and fund flows are slow. The developers need to be spared from being penalised for delayed possession, as they are burdened by several costs. Raheja Developers opines that every ‘restriction’ will lead to an escalation of costs. If car parking is not allowed to be sold then the construction cost of basements will be included in the sale price, says the company. In addition, the builder argues that if common areas and spaces are not owned by the builder, then the cost of developing the same would be included while calculating the selling price. Presently, a Buyer’s Agreement is governed by

Apartment Owners’ viewpoint

The apartment buyers in Gurgaon, who have been suffering due to the nonperformance of many builders, as well as the regulators—that include HUDA, DTCP and the

The order by CCI is a positive document and it can come to the rescue of the RWAs in Gurgaon, as the spirit of the decision is in tune with the law of the land. The CCI order can be referred to by the citizens to demand justice, and it will have a great impact, particularly on the future buyer-seller agreements in the real estate domain : BK Dhawan

District Administration—hope that recommendations made by CCI are implemented in letter and spirit. Harsh Sehgal, President of Park Place RWA, which has also approached the CCI along with Belaire, says that the rule of law should be implemented in the City. “We are not asking for something special, or passing of a new law, but what is due to the buyers should be given to them. This decision is fair to both the builders and buyers, and also ensures that a Group Housing Scheme does not become a tool for perpetual profitmaking by the realtors,” asserts Sehgal. The issue of shoddy implementation of the rule of law, and poor functioning of the DTCP, is also being questioned by the RWAs in Gurgaon. Commander Dharamvir Yadav, who is fighting for the rights of Mayfield Garden residents, says that Haryana has excellent laws related to real estate, but non-implementation is the

Here Comes The Sun

 Contd from p 1 in solar energy production, and has introduced the concept of net metering. “In Gujarat many consumers have become power producers, as is happening in European countries,” he asserts. Making an irresistible offer, Upadhayay says that if the government permits, then his Company can install solar power units on rooftops at its own cost, and sell energy to consumers. A person or an organisation that gets a solar power system installed will not only get subsidy, but also the benefit of accelerated tax depreciation, he says. In the next two to three years it is likely that 'grid parity' will be reached, and the cost of setting up a solar power plant would be almost the same as that of a coal or a nuclear power plant. Referring to a new proposal made by the Ministry of Renewable Energy, regarding the setting up of a 2 MW solar energy capacity in Gurgaon, Upadhayay says that it is an excellent opportunity for house owners, industrial units

the laws of the respective State government pertaining to Floor Area Ratio (FAR), site coverage, plot size, parking, structures, and common areas.

C over S tory

and commercial establishments, to get themselves an alternative source of energy that is cheaper, cleaner, and offers them freedom from the grid. “Right now we need support from the government, the utilities and other organisations, for the promotion of solar energy, and the concept of net metering,” believes Upadhayay. “I want the rates to be stabilised at the 2 Kw level, so that roof top producers can also sell power to the main grid. This is already happening in Europe, where solar energy has become so popular that many conventional power plants are being closed. In Germany almost 20 per cent of power production comes from the Sun, and this has helped in stabilising the energy costs,” he says. When asked why most of the Indian companies were concentrating on Western markets, Upadhayay says that the trend is changing fast, as the Indian market is now

emerging even bigger than that in Europe and the US. There are two types of companies operating in this field – the solar panel producers, and the developers like ACME; and everyone is now concentrating on the growing Indian market. In Gurgaon, which is plagued with power cuts and shortages in summers as well as winters, Upadhayay suggests that solar pockets could be developed in Manesar, as well as the new sectors that are being developed as per the new Masterplan. “The new offices, commercial complexes and malls can be supplied power through these dedicated solar parks connected to the main grid. The power producers and consumers can be given bonus and credits by the utilities, for choosing a greener option,” he asserts. When asked how the cost of solar power units could be brought down, Upadhyay says that the major cost is the

As on January 10, 2013 All Prices in Rs/kg.

Food Take Area/ vegetables

Palam Vihar

Safal

Reliance Fresh

Sector 23

DLF City Phase 5

South City 1

Sector 54

Potatoes (old/new)

15

9

8

12

15

9

10

Onions

25

24

23

22

28

22.90

25

Tomatoes

30

16

14

15

24

15.90

18

Cucumbers

40

40

30

42

48

36

35

Carrots

30

16

15

30

25

17

20

Radish

15

8

2.50/piece

10

10

6.90

12

Beans

60

55

54

60

60

48

60

Cauliflower

30

22

16

25

15

20.90

25

Mushroom

25

30

30

30

25

25

25

power storage batteries, that need to be changed after every couple of years. “The solar power system that we are offering does not need the use of batteries, as the individual homes would be connected to the main grid. The power need not be stored in batteries, as it is distributed to the network. At the end of the month what is being produced and consumed will be calculated, and the house owner will be billed or paid accordingly,” says Upadhayay. Even if a producer is connected to the grid without batteries, and the connectivity goes off, power will remain in the house, as the inverter will turn into the island mode, he says. Buyers have to take care that the inverters they install have a dual mode of functioning. Solar power production also reduces wastage in terms of distribution losses, as the production takes place very

05

major problem. “The current decision by CCI makes it clear that apartment owners should be allowed to manage the complex, and builders should exit – but this never happens,” he asserts. That the builders should stop creating ‘sham’ RWAs and exit the Group Housing Societies, is being strongly demanded across Gurgaon. “It is time DTCP took serious stock of the situation, and came out with a plan to ensure that the rule of law is implemented in the City,” he asserts, adding that time has come for the Real Estate industry to embrace transparency and responsibility. The majority of the buyers now want the government and the regulator to take the lead, so that the Real Estate industry follows the legal benchmarks set by the CCI and the State itself. Industry watchers say that it is a golden chance to undo the wrongs that have continued for a long time. It is clearly time for the Real Estate Regulatory Bill.u close to users, and sometimes on their rooftops. “If Haryana takes solar power seriously, cities like Faridabad and Gurgaon can very soon witness an end to power shortages. The concept of net metering must be taken seriously; it will help the consumers, distributors and even the producers,” he says. The solar option is becoming more important as the production of conventional energy through coal and other means is likely to become more costly by the day. “Our Company can offer the consumers/investors and builders a state of the art modular flat pack, which can be installed within 6 to 7 days. The capacity can be from 2 Kw to hundreds of Kw, depending upon the need,” he says. If the government supports the solar initiative, then his Company could set up a captive solar power plant in Gurgaon, that could augment the power production and energy available to the City. This has already happened in Gujarat and Rajasthan, where ACME has set up large scale solar power plants, he reveals. u

UIDAI Data Centre at Manesar

C

M inaugurates the UIDAI Data Centre at Manesar. UIDAI has issued 21 crores Aadhaar cards to date. The plan is to issue 160 crores cards by 2030. The Centre will come up in five acres of land, and will be a state-of-the-art, captive green data centre as per global standards and guidelines. It will be equipped to provide round the clock monitoring and operation support. It is estimated to be completed by June 2014. The Data Centre will be reviewed by the Uptime Institute, USA, for a Tier III certification, while the Indian Green Building Council would review the Centre for purpose of awarding a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold rating for the building. The average annual Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) of the Centre is estimated to be less than 1.6, making it one of the most green and efficient data centres in the country. Further, to ensure utmost security, the Data Centre will be housed in a blast-proof concrete structure, adhering to design as per Seismic Zone-5 compliance requirements.


06

11-17 January 2013

C ivic/S ocial

Some Things Don't Change...

Asha pandey

{ Maninder Dabas / FG } ‘The first sign of corruption in a society that is still alive is that the end justifies the means.’ (Georges Bernanos)

I

t’s the lure of quick success that stems the seed of corruption in an individual’s mind. Today most government, or even non-government organisations or places, are not free from corruption. Is there no limit to corruption? Be it the ‘doodhwala’ who provides us with milk in the morning, or the ‘autowallah’  who drops us at our doorstep in the evening everybody is in the loop. It has become a vicious circle. Some of our governement departments have become fiefdoms. No service is free from the stains of corruption. “Corruption has become a way of life in India. Without  skulduggery  and palm greasing one can’t get work done. I have been living here for the last twenty years. In my stay here, or elsewhere in this country, I haven’t come across any government department where work is done without greasing the palms of the concerned officer. If you have to take the birth cerificate of your grandson, or the Completion certificate of your house, you have to part with money. We often blame mainly the police for being corrupt, and no doubt they are, but I don’t think there is any sphere of life left where corruption doesn’t exist. Gurgaon, in fact, is now the breeding ground for corruption. This City is the hub of real estate, and we all know how murky and sharkinfested the real estate waters are,” said an old resident of the City. Others talk of corruption in getting a licence and passport, or even a bus pass.

Corruption in Administration

“Be it MCG or HUDA, or any other government department, no official does his or her job properly. Right from the day an individual purchases land in a HUDA sector, and intends to make a home for himself,

these officials start sniffing him for money. Be it the clearance of the house design, or taking the occupation certificate, they charge money for each transaction. If you don’t provide them with the money, they say that they have lost the file. People pay money in lakhs to get the occupation certificates of their homes; and this is not where it stops. An individual has to then roam different departments to get civic facilities – such as power, sewage and water connections – and again grease the palms of officials. Most of them call it ‘Chai Paani’,  though the amount is enough to feed lakhs of hungry people. Another tragedy is that you can’t get work like sewage connection or water connection done from private plumbers; if you do, you get fined by the authority. The whole system is so mildewed that the money gets circulated according to the ranks of the officials. MCG is no different from HUDA – it’s just that its jurisdiction hasn’t allowed it to flex its muscles as much,” said Shankar Lal, a resident. The Police has always been notorious for corruption and taking bribes, and most of us know how to ‘tackle’ a policeman. “I have lived in Mumbai for quite some time, and I have seen that the police there has some moral responsibility and respect towards their job, and the people too fear breaking the law. But here people break the law and get away easily by paying money. How can then one expect this police to maintain the rule of law in the City?” added another prominent resident.

In Health

Despite having many multifacilities equipped big private hospitals, Gurgaon doesn’t have a single big government hospital. The Civil Hospital remains in a shambles, and it’s extremely hard to get treatment there. “Here doctors come to see you once a day, and that too as routine duty. You should have some relations in the staff, or be ready to pay some member in the support staff, so that he can put you up as one of

his own in front of the doctors. You also have to buy almost all the medicines from outside,” said Rajesh Kumar, a poor labourer at the Civil Hospital, Gurgaon. “Gurgaon is one of the biggest cities in Haryana, and it has a population of over 20 lakh now. It ought to have a big government hospital. It has only one Civil Hospital, and the other which was supposed to be functional by now is still lying unused, even years after the completion of infrastructure. Even the Haryana CM himself comes to only the big private hospitals whenever he has any health issues, and I think it’s the clout of the management of these hospitals that has kept the State from providing a big civic hospital in Gurgaon,” added a resident who lives in one of the posh areas of Gurgaon.

In Transport

We all know how drastically Gurgaon lacks public transport, that leads to regular over-charging by autorickshaws. “This is one of biggest problems in Gurgaon. Once you are out of the Metro, you have to take these autos, who charge quite a fortune even for one or two kilometres. The buses started by Haryana Roadways are of little help; when in need one seldom gets them,” said Anupam Chauhan, a resident of Delhi who comes to Gurgaon for work. The RTO department pretends to be blind. “Here we give permits to autorickshaws and other commercial vehicles, but as far as the rate norms are concerned, we don’t know anything,” said a senior official in the RTO office. The permits for auto or mini buses are given after a lot of palm greasing; no amount of flaws in the documents can prevent the officials from giving out such permits.

PDS system & LPG

The PDS system and LPG supply have been prone to corruption for a long time. They most affect the masses. The corruption in LPG supply has increased many fold since the decision taken by the government (last year), whereby only

6 subsidised cylinders would be available per household per year – and the rest would be given at a non-subsidised price. “This decision has triggered a flurry of corruption. LPG is a necessity. The price of a cylinder in the ‘black market’ has increased from Rs. 700 to around Rs. 1,300. The fuel mafia, with the help of gas agencies, is therefore cornering the supplies. Legal users are facing supply constraints,” said Shyam Yadav, a resident of Palam Vihar. PDS is another putrid pot of corruption where, in the name of mass welfare, some unscrupulous people gulp the food given by the government for the poor and have-nots. First of all getting a BPL card made is a tough challenge; and even if a deserving candidate gets it made by greasing the palms of the officials, he won’t get any benefit – because, by the time he would reach the depot, the ration depot holder would have sold the grain meant for the poor in the black market. “We seldom get to know about the arrival of the ration; and even if we get it, the quantity as well as the quality is not as it should be,” said Shambu, who runs a paan  shop in Adarsh Nagar area in Old Gurgaon. Shambu is among the few lucky ones who own a BPL ration card, because a majority of the poor don’t have ration cards here. “I don’t have a ration card, and even if I try to get one, it’s not possible without paying a handsome amount to the authorities.” said Narayan, who sells vegetables in Sadar Bazar.  “The system has totally rotted. From the top to the bottom, everybody has his or her share in the corruption. Getting a ration depot allocated needs a lot of palm greasing.  We are forced to become corrupt, and if anyone denies the convention, he or she will not get ration supplies for the shop the next time,” said a depot holder. Black-marketing is still omnipresent in this country. “According to law, a depot owner ought to have at least 600 cards, to file an application for a depot, but here only a 100 cards will do. The depot holder gets ration for 700 cards anyway, and so he can sell the bulk in the black market – provided he shares 60 per cent of his illegal gains with the authorities,” he explained.

Is Delhi better?

Well, it’s a tough question to answer because, to most of the people living in Delhi and Gurgaon there is hardly any difference between the two. There are of course those who have lived in both cities. “No place, whether it’s Delhi, Gurgaon or any other place in India or abroad, is free from corruption. It’s there; or to be self-critical, it’s within us. But yes, Delhi is a far better place in comparison to Gurgaon, because in Delhi

the officials feel some responsibility towards their job as well as towards the masses. In Gurgaon, on the other hand, even ‘small’ officials are rich and powerful. Even a JE in HUDA or MCG comes in a fancy SUV, to check the flow of a drain. Delhi officials, being in the capital, also are held more accountable. Even the policemen in Delhi don’t ask for money as bluntly as the cops in Gurgaon or else where,” said Subash Rana, a Dwarka resident.

Real estate: the Mother of all Corruptions

In this real estate hub, land prices are artificially ‘jacked up’, by loose announcements from politicians. “Real Estate is the mother of all sorts of corruption in Gurgaon. The corruption starts from the time a licence is to be taken from DTCP. Many politicians are now active players, with a builder name as a front. They are able to influence all approvals, and also know where to buy, and how to jack up the land price in that area. The builders then just buy these licences from the politicians. Everybody is happy. The easy transfer of licences to different individuals has been one of the reasons why the corruption in real estate business has increased by many folds, as has the cost of land/ apartments,” said Dharamvir Yadav, the President of Mayfield Gardens RWA.

What about the rest of Haryana?

To many people in Haryana, outside Gurgaon, this City doesn’t have any semblance to a Haryanvi city. To many it’s a city that is as good as, or perhaps better than, the national Capital itself. The Haryanvis who have settled here believe that Gurgaon has less corruption in comparison to other areas of the State, especially the rural areas. “People say cities have more corruption, but rural areas are not far behind. In a city like Gurgaon, corruption is expected, because there is a dearth of resources and there are so many takers. Other areas of Haryana too are corrupted, but the corruption there doesn’t get reported. Here in Gurgaon we have more transparency via the media and many other things. In rural Haryana, if an individual has power, he can use it for all possible unfair means, and there is nobody to check him. We too are responsible for the corruption, because an individual only asks for money when he knows that we won’t report him; to get our work done we would pay him without any problem. For example, I don’t think that even 50 per cent of the citizens carry the full documents in their vehicles, and willingly hand over a few hundred rupees when caught. So I believe we citizens too are as responsible as the officials for the rise of corruption in the City,” said Sukhbir Dahiya, a resident of Sector-46. u


11-17 January 2013

C ivic/S ocial

07

Grand Babysitters { Anita Jaswal }

C

ongratulations, you just became a grandparent. The odds are fairly good that you also became a parttime to full-time babysitter! Depending on their childrens’ work and relationship statuses, many grandparents are finding themselves in the role of caregivers to their grandchildren. The proportion of pre-schoolers cared for primarily by their grandparents, while their parents work, is steadily on the rise. Rita Malik and Kumud Anand are ‘samdhans’ – ‘Nani’ and ‘Dadi’ respectively to 2 year old Pratyush. While mom Jagriti is at work, Pratyish spends his time between his two doting grandmothers. When Jagriti’s maternity leave was over she was reluctant to go back to work. “My mom knew how hard it was for me to return to work. The first day I burst into tears. I told my mom I couldn’t do it. She told me that everything would be okay, and that I needed to take it a day at a time. I just

felt miserable being at work, instead of at home with the baby. I kept thinking about the baby. Of course with time it got easier; and all along it helped to know that my baby was at home with my mom and mom-in-law - well cared for and doted upon.” Au contraire, Garima Singh, a mom, says, “When I was expecting my second baby, I had taken a year’s maternity leave from my job, and enjoyed it. Having a baby was exciting and fun, but I was soon tired of the inane conversations about weaning, vaccinations and teething. And of course we needed the money. Rehan is an adorable baby, but I found childcare to be mind-numbing drudgery. I was itching to get back to my computer and career — back to being me again. I am lucky I have my in-laws looking after him!” Having a baby and expecting the grandparents to babysit all the time isn’t very responsible. Just thinking “Oh it’s okay, mom will watch them!” can be an imposition, because surely your mom has a life, too. Using grandparents Jit kumar

Rita Malik

Naveen Kataria

Rasvinder Uppal

for regular babysitting is a slippery slope to exploitation. Says Garima’s mother-inlaw, Asha, “We all want to help out with the kids, but no one wants to be taken for granted...Sometimes it seems as though my son and his wife see me as the babysitter, not the grandmother. Now don’t get me wrong. I adore  my grand children. I  love my time with them. I’m  thrilled  that my son and daughter-in-law trust me enough with the kids. My situation is pretty terrific, all things considered. And yet ... there are times when I feel, if not exactly taken advantage of, taken for granted. Not unappreciated, just slightly under-appreciated,” says Asha candidly. Says Naveen Kataria, a grandmom, “No doubt our kids expect much more from us than we ever did from our own parents. Our grown children also seem to have a much greater sense of entitlement than we had. This is because our relationships with them tend to be far more casual and open, than it was with our parents. That’s the good news. But such a high level of expectation can put a real strain on grandparents.” She adds, “My goal is to help out as much as I possibly can, stopping short of the point where I start feeling resentful, completely drained, or out of touch with my own needs. There is a fine line, and it takes constant vigilance not to cross it. There are times when I’ve crossed that line, times when I’ve agreed to a bit more childcare than I really had the energy for — and paid the price. The pressure to say yes to their requests doesn’t come from them, it comes from  me; from my love for them and for my grand daughters, Tanisha and Sharanya. And from the lingering sense of guilt that seems to be part of my wiring. Note to self: Remember, it’s okay to say no! We are Nanis, not nannies! I adore my grandchildren. I know that being a parent today is, in many ways, more complicated than ever before, and I want to be there for them – but also for myself.” “Clear communication,” Raswinder Uppal, a grandmother, says, “is the key to making the arrangement work, especially since we’re all so busy. They’re free to ask me to pitch in, and I’m free to say no.” Still, she likes to say yes as often as she can, adding that spending time with the kids, before they get completely swept up in their own lives – is her top priority. Incidentally, Raswinder and her husband Col. Uppal, agreed to keep their grandson Tejas ever since he was born – as their daughter had a ‘flying’ job. It’s only recently—when the toddler was almost three—that he has gone to live with his parents. For some, the decision to babysit is taken because  they want to cherish the grand child, and give their children a peace of mind while they build their

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9818200470 qazidesigner@gmail.com careers. Others do it as they are not in favour of Day Care centres. Those are expensive, and children need to save up money for a house. The contributions that grandparents make towards their families are extraordinary. But there’s a clear difference between asking for babysitting and just dumping your kids off on your folks. One must remember that babysitting children is not easy for a 60 plus person. They are also our parents. Retired grandparents, who choose to live near their families, enjoy spending time with them – but also want to pursue their own interests, and have a life of their own. They have already brought us up; they cannot be expected to bring up 2 generations full time! It is time to find a babysitting balance, which works for everyone.u

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08

11-17 January 2013

C ivic/S ocial

Education Apartheid

Asha pandey

{ Shilpy Arora / FG }

W

ithout education, we are in a horrible and deadly danger of taking educated people seriously' – so said famous writer G.K. Chesterton, emphasising the importance of education for all. However, in India, for centuries children from the under-privileged and oppressed communities have been barred from education – earlier, due to the caste system, and today, due to a chasm between the rich and the poor. Although after Independence India s republican democracy was expected to end this ageold educational blockade, it gave birth to educational apartheid in a new form – where the rich study in elite and exclusive private schools, while the poor at best go to municipal schools, where both amenities and teachers are quite absent. Education in India is perhaps the best example of the vast inequalities in our society. The latest illustration is the outcry from the private schools regarding the recent RTE ruling of the Supreme Court, making it compulsory for all schools to have 25 per cent seats for the poor children. Despite the deadline for its implementation having already passed, no school in the City has implemented the ruling. While some schools show 'concern' for the discomfort that the underprivileged would have in the 'modern' classrooms, others are worried about the financial implications of the ruling. There is a lot also unsaid, or not to be quoted.

Why is implementation so hard?

Mr. Krishnamurthy, a member of the management committee of one of the private schools, says that the government is only providing the tuition fees for the underprivileged students. However, other costs such as commuting, and costs for remedial classes and counselling sessions have not been talked about at all. Mrs. Bhalla, Vice-President of an international school, points out that underprivileged children start school only from Class I. “How will they be able to study along with the other students, who may already have attended two to three years of pre-school?,” questions Mrs. Bhalla. The private schools want to know whether the government will provide benefits such as scholarships, free uniforms, free textbooks, free schoolbags and writing materials, to

under-privileged students applying in the private schools under the 25 per cent quota. “Why should these current benefits stop, simply because the children now choose to go to a private school, instead of a government school? Further, the midday meal is as an important motivation for school-coming poor children. It also ensures their nutritional needs. How will the government ensure that the underprivileged children attending private schools are not left out of the ambit of the mid-day meal?,” points out Mrs. Bhalla. Most of the schools feel that the RTE quota in schools has been introduced just to make up for the half-baked/half-done work of the government schools. “It shows the inefficiency of the government to provide quality education. Tomorrow, the government may force rich people to adopt underprivileged children. My question is if underprivileged children deserve quality education, don’t they deserve quality food, quality parental guidance and quality houses too?,” questions a senior member of the Haryana Progressive School Conference (HPSC). An RTE activist, Prabhat Agarwal, feels that the unwillingness of private schools to admit the underprivileged reflects the new face of a 'casteist' mentality. “Most of the schools have been given forest lands or land at concessional prices by the government. Many times they are also given tax exemptions. Today it is time for them to pay back to society. We have to come out of the 'gated community mentality', and teach our children to assimilate well with the society.

A Middle Way

A few schools have been working on a different model, to stress on their social responsibility. They offer afternoon classes to the underprivileged, adopt underprivileged children, and partner with NGO schools. One such example is DPS Shiksha Kendra. Started almost 10 years ago, it is working to uplift the underprivileged children in the neighbourhood, by giving them access to quality education. The Principal of DPS, Mrs. Mishra, says, “We cannot remain immune to our surroundings. By providing education to poor children living in the school’s neighbourhood, we are in fact making it a safer and better place for ourselves.” The area covered

by the School is, however, limited to its neighbourhood. While some of the underprivileged children go on to join mainstream schools, many continue to study under the National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS), formerly known as National Open School (an autonomous organisation that provides a number of vocational, life enrichment and community oriented courses, besides general and academic courses at secondary and senior secondary levels). Another such school denies that this step has been taken to escape from the regulation of the RTE quota. “Given our experience with the afternoon school, we have realised that having students from poorer backgrounds in a 'normal' We can learn a lot from the work of Kolkata’s Sister Cyril, an Irish nun, who for about 20 years has been admitting 'street children' to her school – Loretto Day School Sealdah. The children from the economically weaker backgrounds study together with the 'privileged class' children. The students are proud that their School provides an equal opportunity to the underprivileged children, to study and grow. Any child, irrespective of religion, economic background or class can apply to Loreto Day School. The less privileged children are encouraged to ask for a concessional fee structure, which is flexible, based on the capacity of the family. There are students who do not pay any fee at all. A lottery is then conducted to choose half the intake each from the privileged and the under-privileged groups. class is not going to serve the purpose. At our afternoon school we have a curriculum that has a special focus on the development of life skills; it is contextual, flexible, and teaches at a slower pace, as per the needs of such children. If you put these underprivileged children in the 'normal' classroom, they are going to suffer,” says the Principal of a private school that also offers afternoon classes to the underprivileged in its neighbourhood. She adds, “We choose a few of the talented under-privileged students to come study in the main school. So we took in Razia, an underprivileged child, who was doing exceptionally well in the afternoon school. When she was at the

afternoon school she had performed well, not just in academics, but also in extracurricular activities such as swimming, tennis and painting. However, after her admission to the main school she lost her confidence, and couldn’t score even half of her earlier marks,” says the Principal. According to most of the private schools the underprivileged children often suffer similarly, which could seriously affect their self-esteem. A 13-year-old girl, Sheetla, who has also attended a private school under the RTE quota regulations, says, “I feel good in the afternoon school. I study with my siblings and friends here. The best thing is that my parents sometimes also come and study alongside us!” Some private schools have introduced this concept of parents as partners, and they have been able to implement it successfully. An RTE activist, Kavita Bakshi, on the other hand, feels that this logic is just a stratagem adopted by the private schools to escape from the RTE quota regulations. She says, “The afternoon schools have much poorer educational standards. These are run within the campus of private schools, but after the regular feepaying students have 'safely' left. I have knocked on the doors of many respected schools to admit a few street children, but have mostly been refused, or offered a few seats in these 'segregated' afternoon schools.”  

Adopting Schools

Some schools simply fund NGO schools, to avoid their responsibility of educating the poorer sections of society. An international school in the City claims to have adopted over 40 underprivileged schools. “We not only fund these schools, but we also invite their children to our school, to perform on our sports day and in special hunts conducted by our schools,” informs the Director of the school. Inviting underprivileged students to talent hunts may help the school in getting better media coverage, but it can hardly make a difference in the education of children,” says Kavita. She also rejects the claim that disadvantaged children can’t adjust in schools which have 'privileged' children. “We have sent many of the 'street children' to the Balwantrai Mehta Schools in Delhi. They have not only picked up academically, but have also done well in other areas, and have made friends very easily. u


11-17 January 2013

C ivic/S ocial

Asha pandey

Roads Are Not For Walking areas are extremely prone to such incidents,” said Anamika Sharma, another young lady. 


What are the police doing?

{ Maninder Dabas / FG }

G

urgaonites fairly uniquely face the crime of chain snatching. It is rampant and brazen. Coupled with eve-teasing and molestation, it has made the women in the city think twice before getting out of their homes – especially after dark. While discussing crime, it is also important to check if the Police are serious in resolving or preventing criminal acts. The Police believes that it has done a remarkable job in the last one year or so in solving the crimes of snatching. “This is one of our biggest achievements, as we were able to bust a whole gang of 36 members, who used to commit crimes like chain snatching and car jacking. We have got hold on them, and now our team is working to curb this sort of crime altogether in the City. We have formulated an effective mechanism of informers, and our officers were thus able to anticipate the spot where the next instance of snatching was going to happen. However, a mere prediction, even if it is right, is not enough to curb such crimes, because the predicted areas are big in size, and there are so many ways through which these snatchers can get way easily,” said Maheshwar Dayal, the DCP East Gurgaon. There were a recorded total of 156 instances of snatching in 2011, and 81 of them were cases of chain snatching. The police could solve 52 cases. In 2012, the Gurgaon police managed to limit such instances, as the number of reported snatching incidents decreased to 131. “These incidents happen very fast, and the snatchers, who usually come on bikes, do their job and are out of sight even before the victim recovers her senses. However, our recovery percentage has increased,” added Dayal. Who are these snatchers, and how do they commit this crime in the presence of people, and sometimes the police? “Chainsnatchers can be anybody. Who ever needs easy and quick money can commit this crime, because Gurgaon has all the allure in abundance – like malls, shopping arcades, clubs etc. It is not confined to the professional criminals only. Nowadays young boys from good families are also into this type of crime, to

meet their rising demand for money. However, in the case of the gang that has been busted by the Gurgaon Police, all 36 members were from UP's Mullena Village,” added Dayal. People often speculate that these type of crimes are committed by the locals of Gurgaon, who make people living in 'new' Gurgaon their target. The police refuse to buy this theory. “To blame locals alone for this type of crime would be a harsh conclusion. It can be anybody. Yes, we have captured locals for chain-snatching; but we have also witnessed the young and very rich 'new' Gurgaon boys doing such shameful things. Snatchers usually come on bikes, snatch the chain, and sneak out so fast into their hideouts that the police sometimes doesn’t get a single clue. So to me a chain snatcher can be anybody who wants quick money without doing much hard work,” said another police official in Sector-29 Police Station.  
 Yes, it is easy money. No chain now is less than 15 to 20 grams in weight; and with the soaring price of gold, these chain snatchers get a  handful of money in just one snatching. Drug addiction is another key reason behind the increasing number of chain-snatching incidents. Sudden prosperity has made the youngsters spoilt, and they don't think for a moment before getting into such crimes. Many a times people, especially ladies, have got injured because these culprits don't have any feelings of hurting a lady, when they pull her ear rings. Some of these cases have even resulted in fatal injuries to the victim. ” said Jagdish Prasad, another Police official. “Gurgaon is a town with a large floating population that daily commutes here for work, and some of these workers are snatchers too. For example, the gang I have told you about belongs to UP, and they used to come here 'disguised' as labourers,” added Dayal. “Lakhs of people daily come here for jobs or other purposes. They don’t have any records in our register, and that is what makes them feel easy about committing such a crime. People

who come here from nearby towns of Delhi–like Ghitorini, Chattarpur–commit crime here and move back fast to their home towns,” said Prasad. Gurgaon has many living in slums also, and these people too indulge in instances of loot. 


Women – an easy prey

Women are the most vulnerable target, even in broad day-light. They invariably wear a gold ornament, and/or carry a purse/bag. Most crimes take place in the evenings, when women come out for walks, or for some shopping to the local markets. These snatchers always remain ready, and move fast, even before the victim can shout for help. “Yes no doubt chain snatching is one of the major concerns, after eve teasing or molestation. During shopping in the malls on MG Road I always remain aware and alert till the time I don't get back into my car. The winter season, however, has seen a decrease in such incidents, because most of the women remain clad in woollen clothes, and these snatchers don't get their hands on their neck easily,” said Kavita Verma, a working woman. “We remain scared while walking out of our houses, even for short distances. Nowadays you can find these snatchers anywhere. Though our locality is comparatively safe, because police vigils are frequent here, I have heard of many chainsnatching incidents in the City. I avoid going out alone anywhere after sunset,” said Monika Chadda, a woman in her early thirties, living in Sector-46. A fear psychosis has gripped the masses after repeated incidents of snatching and eve-teasing or sexual assault. It has reduced the confidence of the people in the police. “They come, they snatch, they vanish. Before the victim gets any clue the snatcher flees with her chain, and most of the times the police remain aloof and unmoved. I don’t prefer to go alone outside my house. Even for the evening walk to the nearby park I either take my husband or my sisterin-law along. It is very unsafe to go outside, especially near the market place, because these

We have busted a big gang, and hence have solved many cases. Plus, with the help of the information gathered from these culprits, our team would continue to get all the people behind bars too. As far as curbing such incidents are concerned, it is quite a tough job; if we try to stop every second bike rider it would result in chaos. Yes effective police positioning can certainly help in avoiding such incidents, and we are working on it. We have made our plans to nab these snatchers. We can’t have police presence at every corner of the

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City, and neither can we guard every citizen personally, but we are trying our best to minimise such incidents, and give the City a peaceful environment to live in,” said Dayal. “We have increased the police vigils in different market areas that are secluded from the main sector areas. There is a presence of PCRs at various school gates in the afternoons. The presence of police certainly helps, but we also have our limitations. People too need to be always alert and agile,” said a police official. While snatching has been a problem with the whole city, there are certain areas that 
the Police think are more prone (to snatching). “Well I don't want to name any particular area, as snatching can happen anywhere. But yes, the areas which are crowded and have a large footfall, and easy access to the highway or any other broad road, are more likely to witness such instances,” added Dayal. While the police at least seems aware and vigilant, we the citizens need to take special care. We need to report all such cases. This problem will not go away in a hurry. It needs serious attention, as it impacts our women, physically and mentally. u

Citizen-Police { Maninder Dabas / FG }

I

n the wake of the Delhi rape case, Gurgaon First, a City based social group organised a Workshop at Fortis Hospital, on how to make Gurgaon safer for women. Gurgaon First invited eminent social activist Dr. Kiran Bedi to not only address the august gathering, that included various RWA Heads, Citizen Forums and NGOs, but also to exchange views with local people. Dr. Bedi advocated the creation of a Citizen-Police Control Room for parallel policing, by involving the RWAs, senior citizens, women, schools and colleges, as well as corporates. She also talked about involving private security guards in policing, and re-starting the Civil Defence movement though NSS and NCC cadets. She emphasised crime prevention by collaborative action, comprising 6Ps - People, Police, Prosecution, Politicians, Press and Prisons. “Gurgaon citizens should get together to conduct social audits of the functioning of police stations. By doing so, each constable will be answerable and accountable to the citizens. A separate Citizen Police Control Room would force the police to take action against the culprits. Citizens can't become the police themselves, but they should work together, in making the police realise their duties and obligations,” said Dr. Bedi. She encouraged citizens to hold monthly meetings with the police, and bring up issues. Shubhra Puri, founder of Gurgaon First, said, “Law enforcing agencies such as the Police and Traffic Police need to tighten their belts. They have to also make an attitudinal change, and develop a deep sense of responsibility and respect for their public service jobs. Laws need to be more stringent and clear, and the judiciary process also needs to be fast-tracked. Support groups, like NGOs, can make sure that such crimes are reported and the culprits caught. But perhaps, most importantly, we also need to address the core issue of deteriorating social and moral values of a fast-paced, fast-changing society, and the widening socio-economic divide. Value-based education at the school and family level is equally important.” Gurgaon First had also invited the law keepers (police) and other top officials of the Gurgaon Administration, but none of them came. Only Manoj Khatri, Estate Officer-II, HUDA, came and spoke candidly about this major issue. “Security of women is indeed a big concern, and we can't sit silently. It's our collective responsibility to make sure that women too can roam freely and safely,” added Khatri. u


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Gold-hearted Lhasa When you move amidst the world of sense, free from attachment and aversion alike, there comes the peace in which all sorrows end, and you live in the wisdom of the Self.” - Bhagavad Gita Quotes

{ Archana Kapoor Nagpal } We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.” - Immanuel Kant This is a touching story of unconditional love – between a man and his dog. This story is about Harley, a golden, long-haired Lhasa dog, who taught me an important lesson – true love is unconditional selflessness. Year: 2012 Place: New York I was confined to my apartment for more than a week, as mega-storm Sandy battered the US East Coast with fierce force. The city stood paralysed, amid strong winds and heavy rains. Many lost lives, homes, and any sense of normalcy in their lives. Even those who had shelter were without power for many days, and some without food and water. Public transportation also screeched to a halt, as the rail yards, bus depots and subway systems were flooded. It was painful to see hungry people digging garbage bins looking for food. It was cold. I was surviving on food and water stored in my pantry. Two weeks after Sandy, limited public transportation resumed. I stepped out to do my grocery shopping. I saw a man, holding his dog in his arms. The dog caught my attention. He was a sturdy little dog with oval-shaped brown eyes. The golden long-haired Lhasa looked absolutely beautiful to me.

The Joy of Giving { Dr. Rajesh Bhola }

I

S piritual

11-17 January 2013

receive many calls daily, from people across all segments of society, wishing to donate– to contribute. Some come to donate clothes, others donate food, wheel chairs, CP chairs, and accessories for the disabled children. Some young persons come and celebrate the birthdays of their children or their parents with the homeless and disabled children.A few young couples have been coming to us for the last many years, to deposit advance cheques (for the next quarter) for the conveyance expenses of some very poor, disabled children. All of these kind folk are volunteers, who think beyond themselves, and treat all human beings as part of one family. They have one thing in common – they experience a sense of euphoria from helping others. It can also be described as a sense of vitality, a warm glow. It has been compared to a runner’s high, and may be attributed to a release of endorphins; it is also talked about as a 'helper’s high'. Various studies have found that donors and volunteers gain the most from a charitable encounter. The person providing the philanthropy clearly takes away something from the experience; there actually may be measurable emotional advantages to being charitable. Helping others not only makes a person feel good, but it may also increase one’s physical and emotional well-being. Volunteering increases one’s energy, sense of mastery over life and self-esteem. It also promotes positive feelings, which may strengthen and enhance the immune system. It is great to give gifts, and to be generous even in tough financial times. There are a number of health benefits that may result from being altruistic: an activation of emotions lowers stress levels, and provides longer periods of calm. True giving comes from the same place inside you as your deepest happiness. Many wonder what exactly they should give. Everybody has something of value for another person. It could be a kind word, a simple smile, some appreciation, the sharing of some special knowledge, even a helping hand – or a bit of support during a difficult emotional time. Yes. you have something to give everyone. The act of true giving is wonderful and amazing.There may be only a limited amount of material things you can give away, but fortunately generosity and kindness have no limitations. One of life’s most basic laws is that acts of love, kindness and generosity multiply and return to you many times over. The more you give the happier you will feel.

I asked the man inquisitively, “What is the name of your pet?” The man answered in a low voice, “I am Stephen and he is Harley. I have lost my home, family and business in the devastation. We are homeless.” At a loss of words, I could only empathize with Stephen. Stephen was visibly uncomfortable, and shivering because of fever. His clothes were threadbare, and shoes torn. He tried to put a vest on Harley, as a protection against the cold weather. Harley was reluctant to get into the dog vest. Stephen failed after a couple of tries, but kept trying. I asked hesitantly, “Why is Harley so reluctant to get into his vest?” He answered, “Harley is a very affectionate dog. He does not want to get into his vest, as he sees I am not wearing a jacket. He is more concerned about my wellbeing. Since I do not have enough warm clothes, Harley wants to go through the same struggle.” I was moved by Harley’s selfless act. Stephen said in a tearful voice, “He is a happy dog who fills my life with light. He gives me self-confidence during my hard days. He is undemanding, and he is my only family now.” Finally Harley was ready to get into his dog vest, as Stephen put on his worn-out jacket. I was overwhelmed by this show of unconditional love. I thought of a quote, “The basis of all animal rights should be the Golden Rule: we should treat them as we would wish them to treat us, were (there) any other species in our dominant position.” - Christine Stevens u So, if you want to experience more joy, give joy to others; if you want more love, learn to give love; if you want attention and appreciation, learn to appreciate others. These are some of life’s most precious gifts, and they do not cost you anything. When you meet someone, you can silently send them a blessing, wishing them happiness, joy and laughter. This kind of silent giving is very powerful. Do this and you will suddenly find people around you opening to you in joy and happiness. As long as you are giving, you will also be receiving. Giving becomes a blessing for the giver. Giving creates a pattern of happiness, joy and love in your life. Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love. People who regularly donate not only reflect an aura of joy and contentment, but also narrate to me incidents of nature’s charisma and benevolence in their lives. They attribute their good luck to their acts of charity. Some families have evolved a system of regular sharing as part of their family culture. In a particular case, all the family members, across generations, visit us and share their resources and their valuable time; the youngest child, who is only eight, shares his chocolates, crayons and colours, whereas his grandfather takes care of the cost of all the medicines we distribute during the month. This family provides great inspiration to me; their thoughtfulness and feelings for others really stir my soul. It is human nature to believe that, “when I have more I’ll give more.” If you have this mentality you will never have enough of anything to give. Generosity comes from believing you always have enough to share. Challenge yourself to give love to those who get the least. Make your love unconditional. Make the world a more loving place. Everyone will reap the benefits. The Hindu religion has an equivalent term, ‘daan’, for philanthropy. The Gita dwells on the ethical and moral imperatives of practicing philanthropy: ‘atavyamiti yaddaram diyate anupakarine’ (the meaning of giving is that which is given without any expectations of return and without any strings attached). In the act of giving, when simply performed from the core of the heart, the spiritual path is enacted. Kabir, one of the great mystics, guides human beings thus: “You came into this world with fists closed and you go away with open palms (so during your lifetime keep your hands open and give liberally)” – 'mutthi bandhe aaye jagat mein haath pasare jaoge bhai'.u Dr. Rajesh Bhola is President of Spastic Society of Gurgaon and is working for the cause of children with autism, cerebral palsy, mental retardation and multiple disabilities for more than 20 years.

Said the Old to the New How can I ever be old, When I have never been young? I am the eternal one I go & come. At sixty, the woman of the sixties Heaves a sigh, says good bye. To doubts about the inherent youth They are doing good. With the influx of information, They should. Yoga is finally a rage, Pranayama is a household phrase And in their zipping life, they let go. And are dazed & amazed at the roar At Ranthambor. The Vedic cult has revived, in a fashionable style They say ‘Cheers!’ with herbal tonics, Instead of beers. Meditations are success mantras The corporate teaches them As prosperity & abundance yantras! Chanting is a tool, to school the mind divine. Life is all about The roots & the shoots & the fruits If roots are strong, How can the fruits go wrong? And so at sixty, The woman of the sixties Heaves a sigh, And moves into the fourth phase of her Vedic life. The prerequisite to Sanyasa They call it the Vanprastha To achieve higher Avastha Life’s role is done Much lost much won Time to take cognizance Be the actor & the audience – at once! For it is on these innings That your goal will be set In the life next: All the Best! Shobha Lidder Writer Journalist, Teacher Trainer, Social Activist, Reiki Master, Pranic Healer

Mothering Earth

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he universal shift in the energies and frequent changes in the environment are resulting in sudden depletion of nature and natural resources. While Mother Earth today lies in a pitiable condition, we sit back in our virtual world and blind ourselves to these changes. Isn’t it time for us to stand up and serve our universal Mother, who has been feeding us all this while? As youngsters and as “Agents of Change”, shouldn’t we awaken the collective consciousness of the masses, and render our selfless service to this environment? The hour has come – when we all need to align our activities, and direct our efforts, in creating an environment which is healthy and pure. This environment is not only about the natural world outside, but also the world, inside of us. Being involved in altruistic activities and meditation not only replenishes our positive energy, but also creates a meaningful environment around us. Youngsters today are involved in many Go-Green Initiatives, though a lot more needs to be done. Powerful chants and mass healing calls for instant attention, and more spiritual sessions should be organised. Only with mass awareness and sincere determination can one seek to create a difference. With our combined efforts and the blessings of the divine, this battle can also be won. Mother Earth seeks regeneration, and has chosen to give this opportunity to the youth of today. We come to Mother Earth for a temporary stay. We should make this stay more valuable. Let us unite and create a momentum for change that has the potential to overpower all negatives. Let us not procrastinate. Only the determination to “Serve”, should remain in our heart and mind. u Pooja Pathak


11-17 January 2013

Kid Corner

11

Solutions

Fill in the grid so that every row, column and coloured box contains ALL the numbers from 1 to 6. Bonus clue: which number should go in the circle: 1 or 4?

Literary Flourish

Kids Brainticklers

Be yourself

Why would you want to be someone else? When you could be better by being yourself. Why pratend to be someone you are not? When you’ve something, others haven’t got. You have much more to offer by being just you, Than walking around in someone else’s shoes.

Trying to live the life of another is a mistake, It is a masquerade, nothing more than a fake, Be yourself and let your qualities show through, Neha Singhal Others will love you for just being you. Grade VIII Remember that God loves you just as you are, To him you are already a bright star. Brahmaputra , Family and friends will love you more, too, Lotus Valley Iff you spend time practicing just being you. International School

Artistic Strokes

Lokesh Suryavanshi, Grade XI, Starex International School

Prishita, Grade VII B, Gurgaon Public School

Mahek Jain, Grade VI, MRIS


12

K id C orner

11-17 January 2013

NURSERY ADMISSION NOTICE

Chiranjiv Bharati School

Secondary Wing

About The Institution:

Chiranjiv Bharati School was established in 1987, by Late Chiranjilal Ansal. This 25 year old reputed educational institution, located in Palam Vihar, stands blending testimony to its vision of global ethos with Indian values. It has a sprawling campus of about 6.5 acres, replete with facilities of court games (Basketball, Volleyball, Badminon), field games like (Cricket, Football), Swimming pool, Skating Ring, Archery It houses more than 2500 children in three buildings, with spacious and well-appointed rooms, two libraries and laboratories (Computers, Maths, Science, S.Stds & Humanities and Science. Each building has its own library and activity rooms. Technology-enabled smart classes are also provided. The School has well structured curriculum with in depth plans to meet individual needs. It is child centered, experimental and Primary Wing

interactive in its approach. The School is affiliated to CBSE, and follows the broad guidelines set by CBSE/ NCERT. It has inclusive education with a special educator and a counsellor. The teachers have a mastery of subject matter, good communicative and interpersonal skills. They regularly participate in service training programs. CBS strives to build bridges not only between nations and across cultures and continents, but more importantly, attempts to span the widening gap between age old and time tested traditions, to the rifts created by today's stressful times. We have taken the first step by earning International School Award, an accreditation from British Council, this year. A solid foundation is what CBS is built on – a culture that nurtures the inherent potential and talent of each child, fosters innovative thinking together with a commitment to revolutionize learning through technology. We are committed to impart world class education, which fosters academic excellence, physical fitness, psychological and spiritual health with social consciousness and global leadership. A well trained and devoted faculty endorse the consistently good board results and performance of students in co-scholastic areas including state and national events. u

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Chiranjiv Bharati School, Palam Vihar, Gurgaon Features:

 Mid Day Meals  Activity room including Reading Corner, 3D touch screen auditorium  Computers & a projector for active learning.  Sports enclosure with splash pool  Stage Performances (Dance and Music)  Activity oriented curriculum through projects which integrate art, craft, technology, music and dance.  Activities designed to develop fine motor skills.  Teaching learning process woven around the activity calendar  Integrates global ethos with Indian

values, duly recognized with the International School Awards(ISA) earned from the British Council. Trustee: Mrs. Archana Luthra Principal: Mrs. Sangeeta Saxena Admission Date: Open for the session 2013-14 Admission Criteria: Pre Nursery – 2years and 6 months as on 1st April 2013 Nursery – 3 years and 6 months as on 1st April 2013 KG – 4 years and 6 months as on 1st April 2013

For more information:

Call: 0124-4398600/4075063 or Write to: anscbspv@airtelmail.in

American Public School Features:

 A spacious, warm environment  A sports infrastructure that provides for basketball, badminton, cricket, tennis, swimming and volleyball.  A new Senior Wing campus with a modern Administration block, to include a new canteen, activity rooms for Art, Music & Dance, an Audio-visual lab, conference facilities, and an Auditorium to enhance our holistic learning environment.  Own fleet of transport  Provides extended Day Boarding, aptly named “Amecare”, catering to the needs of working parents till 6 PM.

Curriculum: CBSE

Principal:

Ms Indu Shastri

For more information:

Call: 0124 - 2352580/ 2353131/ 2353232/ 4018944 Write to: info@americanpublicschool.com director@americanpublicschool.com

Established in 1995, by in the Senior Wing, combined Ms Lalita Trehan, the founder with personalized attention helps Director, as one of Gurgaon’s every single child to bloom at finest pioneer schools imbibing his/ her own pace and develop the American Montessori a well rounded individual philosophy and method, personality that stands in good American Public School stead as they embark upon their individual journey through (originally ‘American life. Since its inception, APS Montessori Public has grown into a CBSE School’) is located on Affiliated Senior Secondary two campuses in the School offering Science, picturesque L-Block, Commerce and Humanities DLF Phase II. With streams, providing quality its vision of “striving education to 1000+ for excellence today to prepare students Ms. Indu Shastri students, in the age group of 2 years and 3 to succeed in a challenging world tomorrow”, months to 17 and a half years, APS has adopted Montessori from Gurgaon and adjoining methodology in the formative areas of South Delhi. In the years of the child’s development. Montessori Wing, our teachers Its low student teacher ratio, 1:16 are creative, nurturing and in the Montessori Wing and 1:32 Montessori trained; in the Senior Wing, they are highly qualified, emphasizing a holistic approach to learning. Students are encouraged to participate in extracurricular activities and sports, along with developing all round academic excellence in preparation for entry to professional colleges and universities, both in India and abroad. u

RYAN INTERNATIONAL Our Vision

community life, build tolerance & accountability and able Our vision is to be a premier to deal with emotional and global educational institution, which spiritual quotients. develops the human resource for  A student with knowledge, attiour dynamic and expanding comtude, skills, social and moral values munity, the state, the nation, the personality development, physical region and the world at large. and psycho-social capabilities, Through our Motto, Excellence which are effectively achieved in Education, our institutions culthrough professional coaching in tivate all round development that sports, creative and personality foster academics, understand- Dr. Mouna Gupta enhancement activities. ing, brilliance, spiritual well being, physical development, psychological strengths, re-  The delivery of curriculum by incorporating sourcefulness and creative skills, social responsibil- activities based on the Multiple Intelligence theory of Howard Gardner, Professor at Harvard University ity and concern for one’s environment. that leads to literacy, inquiry, creativity, and critical thinking. Our Mission The Ryan International Group of Institutions blends high value deliveries with modern learning Our Philosophy tools to ensure that each institution has a safe, We at Ryan provide an education that enables healthy, positively energizing, intellectually the students to fulfill their potential- be it social, inchallenging, learning and enjoyable environment, tellectual, academic, sporting or cultural. In this way committed to engage students in active, collaborative they come to an appreciation of their worth as indiand technology based learning methodologies. It is viduals and gain distinction and diversity to which our mission to facilitate: the school aspires as the hallmark of their gradu The development of global citizens- individuals ates. We provide quality education to our students with self-confidence who are able to contribute to irrespective of caste, creed, or colour. u

Pre-primary Wing

Pathways School, Gurgaon Features:

 An International day boarding school, centrally located with ease of access from Delhi, Faridabad, and Gurgaon.  Ranked amongst the top 5 International Schools in Delhi and NCR  Spread over an area of 10-acres  Equipped with Universal radio networking and the interactive whiteboards and projection screens  Special laboratories for science and design & technology  Studios for dance, music, and theatre

 Provides access to training, both in India and abroad Curriculum: Primary Years Programme (PYP) and Diploma Programme (DP) of the International Baccalaureate Organisation of Geneva and the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) of the University of Cambridge, England. Director: Mrs Paramjit K Narang

For more information:

Call: 9560121222 or Write to: admissions.gurgaon@pathways.in

Pathways World School, Aravali Features:

 The first residential school in North India to follow the IB curriculum. Offers day, weekly, and term boarding.  Situated in 32 acres of land along the Aravali Hills  Ranked as the ‘Best International School’ in Delhi NCR and featured among the top 5 in the country.  Recipient of the ‘Designshare Award’ from New York, USA in 2003 for its aesthetic and purposeful infrastructure.  The ‘Best IT User Award” in the education category in the country’ from NASSCOM in 2004.  In 2010, the school became a global

member of Round Square and is also a member of the Council of International Schools (CIS).  Special laboratories for science and design & technology  Studios for dance, music, and theatre  Provides access to training, both in India and abroad Curriculum: Primary Years Programme (PYP) and Diploma Programme (DP) of the International Baccalaureate Organisation of Geneva and the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) of the University of Cambridge, England. Director: Dr. Sarvesh Naidu For more information: Call: 9818666677 or Write to: admissions.aravali@pathways.in

Ryan International School, Sohna Road, Gurgaon Features:

 Interactive Classrooms & Innovative Teaching Methodologies  Qualified & Competent Faculty  Activity Based Teaching  Well Equipped Library & Laboratories  International Schools Award (British Council)  Participation in Various National & International event such as Indian Model United Nations  Global Young Leaders Conference USA, International  Children’s Festival of Performing Arts, Canada  Aviation Camp, NASA Space Tours USA

& various International Sport Meets  Student Counseling  Transport Facility  Horse Riding  Skating  Basket Ball, Lawn Tennis, Chess & Carom Director: Madam Grace Pinto Principal: Dr. Mouna Gupta Admission open: Classes Mont to IX

For more information:

Call: 0124-2266477, 2266577 Write to: ryanbhondsi1@gmail.com

G.D. Goenka Public School, Sector 48, Gurgaon Worldclass Infrastructure

 5.2 acre centrally Air-conditioned Campus  IBMS with world class Fire Safety and CCTV Surveillance  Wi-Fi Campus, Smart Boards  State of the art Library, Digital Language lab  Well equipped Science, Computer Science and Mathematics Labs  Multiple Theatre, Dance, Music and Visual Art Studios  750 fixed seat Auditorium  Amphitheatre, Multipurpose Hall

Concept & Level Appropriate Techniques  CBSE Curriculum  World Class Pedagogy and Teaching

Methodology  Collaborative Project based approach  International Exchange Programs

Sports Facilities

 Indoor-All weather Swimming Pools • Football Field, Athletic Track, Cricket Ground • Multiple Tennis, Squash and Badminton Courts • Athletic Track, Horse Riding • Indoor & Outdoor Basket Ball Courts, Gym Principal: Ms. Anuradha Handa ADMISSIONS OPEN: Classes Nursery To 7 Min Age For Nursery: 3+ As On 31.03.2013

For more information:

Phone: 9818800801, 0124-2219151, 2219152 Email: school@gdgoenka-gurgaon.com

G.D. Goenka Public School

G.D. Goenka Public School Sector 48, Gurgaon, providing facilities matching international standards is starting its first session from April 2013. The admission process for classes Nursery to VII is already in progress. The school has embarked upon the mission to create confident and responsible world citizens sensitive to their environment and the co-creators of their own destiny. The Vision of the school is to impart value based education with new innovations and ideas. The CBSE curriculum is effectively transected using the instructional strategy best suited to the concept. The classrooms with Interactive boards are ergonomic and child friendly. The school provides extensive facilities for visual and performing arts to unlock the individual’s capacity for creative and performing self-expression. Theatre in Education is a stand out feature of the school’s program effectively integrating theatre in curriculum. With a firm belief that good physical education develops emotional fortitude in children, the School has set up state of the art

sports facilities with a structured program to encourage the students to pursue sports seriously. The school Infirmary has requisite medical facilities and a full time qualified doctor and nurse. The Counseling area houses qualified counselors and special educators catering to all age groups of students for psychological and emotional support. The school has its own fleet of air conditioned buses with GPS and speed governors, designed for safety and comfort of the children. A team of educationists lead by Principal Mrs. Anuradha Handa is in place to provide impetus to School’s Vision. The passionate and thoughtful educators at G.D. Goenka are truly differentiated as people who empathize and relate to the impulses of the students by connecting high quality academic learning with modern technology. Committed to equip the learners with the uncommon ability of self exploration and development to sustain the unforeseen challenges of life, the school provides a stimulating and nurturing environment for those seeking the very best in education. u


Wellness

11-17 January 2013

{ Jaspal Bajwa }

O

ne thing we can be sure of – today’s lifestyle is anything but short of ‘stress’. It comes in all guises, and from every imaginable source. It seems to be omnipresent. Stress is normally from external sources – but for us human beings, even from the inside. As new evidence keeps pouring in to suggest that stress is THE root cause for chronic life-threatening disorders, the battle to manage it has taken on even more strident tones. But the harder we try to control it, the more stress seems to pile up. What could be the best way to douse this raging wildfire? Perhaps paradoxically/innovatively make this phenomenon an ally for building resilience? We first must understand why the right kind of stress is an absolute necessity – or, simply put, a survival kit. Since prehistoric times the physiological response of all living organisms to stress has been the ‘fight or flight’ syndrome. Sudden and short-term stress (acute stress) triggers rapid changes in almost all body systems. The brain becomes alert, the immune system throws up a protective shield, the adrenal glands secrete cortisol, and the heart pumps up the muscles to ward off the perceived threat. Interestingly, the right kind of stress can even lead to excellence in performance. As an example, an important contribution to the study of leadership comes from the ‘Flow’ theory (in Positive Psychology). It suggests that a person or team can perform at peak levels, when both ‘adequate challenge’ as well as ‘adequate competency’ are present at the same time. Other examples of the right

Health & Vitality... Naturally!

Making Stress An Ally

kind of stress are encompassed in terms like ‘constructive conflict’, ‘disruptive innovation’ or ‘adversity is the mother of invention’ – all these basically challenge the notion that a comfortable, complacent stress-free status quo is a panacea.

fatally impaired vital organs – and in some cases, a premature death. This is what ‘Chronic Stress’ looks and feels like. The key is to break the vicious cycle. It makes eminent sense to adopt the view that having given a situation our best shot, the outcome must be allowed to happen (and if possible, even respected), as probably the best outcome under the circumstances.

However, carried beyond a limit, too much of a good thing tilts the balance. If we choose a lifestyle which keeps us in a continual ‘fight or flight’ mode, over time, our mind and body tire of living on an ‘adrenaline high’. Pro-inflammatory cytokines (especially interleukin-6) get pumped into our system. Chronic fatigue sets in. Before long our immunity gets comprised, laying the door wide open to invading hordes of disease – inducing pathogens. A build-up of toxins leads to debilitated or

A close observation of Nature teaches us the most profound lesson – we must know when to ‘let go’. However, sometimes insecurities make us forget this, and we endeavour to control every little outcome (aka ‘micromanagement’ or being a ‘control freak’). Not surprisingly, the quality time reserved for our family, friends, interests or hobbies, meditation and a robust physical regimen goes out of the window – and the ‘rat-on-thetreadmill’ syndrome takes over. The second important step

Children’s Dental Care { Carina Frey / Berlin }  

P

Going back over 9,000 years, the sweet potato is one of the oldest known cultivated foods. It is a fibre-rich food, replete with carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals – that promote healthy digestion, lower blood cholesterol levels and increase satiety, which is useful in weight management regimens. Sweet potatoes can be stressreducing, by satisfying the urge for carbohydrates and sweets. The fibre (approx. 4 gm per tuber) helps the body to process the carbohydrates in a slow and steady manner. All these qualities make it an ideal food for those involved in arduous, stressful occupations, or for people suffering from stomach ulcers and inflammations of the colon – as it contains enzymes that help to coat the stomach lining. Sweet Potatoes have several unique nutritional benefits to offer, including a hearty dose of fibre, Vitamins (Vitamins A, B3, B5, B6 and C ) as well as minerals (potassium, manganese and copper). Sweet Potatoes are rich in antioxidants (exceedingly rich in beta-carotene), and also have anti-inflammatory properties. The purple-flesh varieties are outstanding sources of anthocyanins, especially peonidins and cyanidins. Rich in unique phytonutrients called batatins and batatosides, the orange-flesh sweet potatoes also include storage proteins — sporamins—that have unique antioxidant properties. Despite their sweetness, what’s fascinating about sweet potatoes is their ability to actually improve blood sugar regulation. u

arents usually just have to try, and then try again, to figure out the best way to get their children to brush their teeth. The most important thing, though, is consistency, and brushing them at least once a day. That alone dramatically reduces the risk of cavities. Good dental hygiene begins before the baby even has a tooth. Parents can start regularly massaging the baby’s maxillary crest with soft tooth brushes, a nubs brush, or their finger. “That makes teething easier,” says Johanna Kant, Chairwoman of the German Association of Paediatric Dentists. As soon as the baby can begin grasping objects, it can hold its own toothbrush. If parents begin with dental care early, they can avoid their children fighting back against brushing, according to Andrea Thumeyer, Chairwoman of the Hessen State Workgroup on Youth Dental Care. Once the first baby tooth breaks through, the actual cleaning begins. Parents should lay their child on the changing table (so their head is

well supported), or hold the baby in their lap. “Pull their lips slightly to the side, put the brush on the tooth, and brush it lightly back and forth,” says Kant. Fluoride is an effective protection against cavities. “Fluoride protects the enamel from acids,” says Dietmar Oesterreich, Vice President of the German Dental Association. Paediatricians recommend that parents give their children tablets with 0.25 milligrams of fluoride from their birth, until three years of age. Parents should also brush their children’s

is to strike at the weakest link of the vicious cycle. And that relates to habits. Some examples are “always being prepared for the worst, yet always being upbeat and hoping for the best”; and making it a point to take frequent breaks from arduous long work routines, ensuring the daily visit to the gym, quiet meditation, or preparing for a refreshing sleep. In a similar vein, our food choices can help tame stress. Healthy comfort foods—like a bowl of warm oatmeal—can boost levels of serotonin (a calm inducing neurotransmitter), just as cutting down on certain foods (e.g. excess caffeine from coffee) can reduce levels of cortisol and adrenaline(the stress hormones). Certain herbs like St.John’s Wort, Valerian and Chamomille have also been used to good effect. These lifestyle choices, when repeated often enough, end up becoming our “arsenal of winning habits”. Tip of the week In addition to food choices, one of the best stress-busting strategies is to have a regular exercise regimen. Aerobic exercise boosts oxygen circulation, and spurs our body to make ‘feelgood chemicals’, called endorphins. A minimum of 30 minutes of aerobic exercise, three to four times a week is a must.

Registered Holistic Nutritionist (Canadian School of Natural Nutrition) For education purposes only; always consult a healthcare practitioner for medical conditions

Nature’s Wonder Food of the week : Sweet Potato or Ipomoea batatas

teeth, albeit without toothpaste, as too much fluoride can hinder the growth of permanent teeth, according to the Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG). Dentists know of the risks of so-called fluorosis. But as opposed to paediatricians, dentists recommend using toothpaste containing fluoride even for babies. Parents should brush their children’s teeth from the time the first tooth appears, until they turn two years, once a day with a touch of toothpaste – which should contain 500 ppm (parts per million) of fluoride. When children turn two, they can brush their teeth twice a day. A toothpaste with between 1,000 and 1,500 ppm of fluoride can be used when the children start school. Parents often ask how to keep their children still with their mouth open. “My husband does jumping jacks while I brush the teeth,” says Thumeyer. If the child still refuses, then there’s really only one option: holding the child and brushing the teeth. When children turn two, they can then brush their teeth in the morning as well - at best after breakfast. But it’s better to wait if the child eats fruit. “The acids can lead to the dissolving of materials from the tooth surfaces,” says Oesterreich. u

FG Invites Citizens n Are you interested and concerned

about civic and social happenings and issues around you? n Are you motivated to do something positive for society? n Are you interested to also write, and express what you see, hear, feel? If yes, write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com, with a brief background of yourself, with contact number(s). 2–8 March 2012

Vol. 1 No. 28  Pages 24

RNI No. HARENG/2011/39319

`7

For The Other Half

P3

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

{Inside}

Astrology

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he third in our astrology series – featuring Libra, Scorpio and Saggitarius.

Tantric Art

W

e feature

Shobha Broota, a 68year old ‘young’ and energetic artist.

Master Recipe

M

asterchef Top 5 Vijaylaxmi shares a Recipe exclusively for

It lives in two urgaon is a paradox. the Naunequal halves, whereinthe Great as tional Highway-8 acts Wall. The core Divide – like the Berlin the new subbut of the City is rotting; – with malls, gated urbs shine like stars and clubs setting colonies, golf courses never before seen a standard of life in India. that forces extreme of It is this flux the balance – is threatening to unraveland helpful for a balance that is natural and for civili...Pg 16 with; great cities to evolve attain glory. sations to develop and urban core, the Gurgaon’s rotting within the City, concretised villages that hinterland rural and the vast is under once comprised Guru-gram, – under threat of being submerged of a Millennium the new identity in ‘New GurgaCity, with its capital the role of the State on’. It is here that ensure that the forces comes into play; to ...Pg 17 all the populace. touch of development Commissioner Gurgaon Deputy of is the point man P.C Meena, who on in the Disthe State Administrati Gurgaon is much trict, concurs that itself. The District more than the City viz. Gurgaon includes 3 sub-divisionsPataudi; 5 teh,and (North and South) Pataudi, Farukh sils (Gurgaon, Sohna,

FG readers.

G

Regular Features ...Pg 6

Cinema Listings & Helplines ...Pg 7 The Week That Was Laughing Stock

...Pg 7 ...Pg 7

Contd on

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g with nothing.

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Food Take

and 210 Panchayats Nagar, Manesar); that cover 291 villages. a week with Friday Gurgaon spent r Meena, checkDeputy Commissione will is executed – ing how the State’s that has known in this historic area, since the some form of governance a. Being time of Guru Dronachary capital seat of power, close to Delhi, the been influenced by the District has also developments social the political and taking place there. p8

en y Servicsoem Emergenc little, with so much, for so long,

...Pg 18

Let’s Be Civil avan Choudhary, Managing Director of Vygon, speaks on the need for residents to become responsible citizens. ...Pg 21

Prakhar PaNdey

14

{ Hritvick Sen / FG }

service worth its lmost every significant call-in. Whether it salt has a telephone information is food (or liquor) delivery, civic and reservations, services, bookings on cells... there is a line facilities, grievance in. But when there which people can call or a fire – there is an accident, a robbery that people dial is only one type of service Services. in a hurry. Emergency themselves count people Most haven’t had a they that fortunate for they had to ask situation in which who work in these help; but for the people is people distraught services, helping Whether it is Police an everyday affair. – (101), or Fire (102) (100), Ambulance means it is a life-orreceiving a call usually death matter.

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y Line 100 – Police Emergenc main Police Control

Location: The Mini-SecretarRoom (PCR) in Gurgaon’s lines chirping, phone iat. Wireless sets staff they’re set down, ringing as soon as papers – the very rushing about with air hums with activity. who is the Inspector Rishipal, the Operations, says senior in-charge of given day, we receive seriously, “On any a 3,000 calls.” In between 2,500 to which he can from cubicle closed glass he manages the day-tosurvey all activity, PCR. “We have stateday operations of the equipment, and I can of-the-art servers and has one of the safely say that Gurgaon the country.” in most advanced PCRs

Contd on p 6 

Please Visit Us At www.fridaygurgaon.com 0124-4811111 Ask Your Newspaper Vendor For Friday Gurgaon. Express Service at your Doorstep

launched ‘White Xpress’, Ativa Auto Services has Auto Ltd. with the support of Bajaj an auto-on-call service from 6.30 am to 10 pm. The autos are available www.whitexpress.in or Make online bookings at call 0124-4811111. kms, and Rs. 40 for the first two  Autos will charge 8 per km. thereafter it would be Rs

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11-17 January 2013

W ellness 15

Best of 2012

Wellness

6–12 January 2012 Healthy Resolutions Woman, Heal Thyself Support Your Bones Keep Your Hands Clean Skin Care In Winters

13–19 January 2012 The Allium Wonderfood Oil Of Olive 20–26 January 2012 The many layered Allium - Onion Go With The Glow 27 Jan–2 Feb 2012 Hang It (Hangover) Acid-Alkali Balance

3–9 February 2012 Goodness Graincious The ‘ZZZ’ Factor (Quality Sleep)

10–16 February 2012 The Wonders of Apple Cider Vinegar 10 Warning Symptoms (Cancer Awareness) 17–23 February 2012 Let The Child Out (De-stress) Tulsi – The Queen Of Herbs 24 Feb–1 Mar 2012 Macrobiotic Diet – A New Rage An ‘A+’ for Asparagus 2–8 March 2012 A Bacteria A Day? Flax – Good Fat & Fibre 16–22 March 2012 Cruciferous Powerhouse Humble Wonder Herb (Coriander) 23–29 March 2012 Stop Overeating ‘Gur-Maar’ The Sugar Destroyer

Cookie Bars

6-12 July 2012 The Liver Friendly Herb (Milk Thistle) Take A Boost...Not Boosters (Energy Drinks)

13-19 July 2012 Saffron Gold (Turmeric) Fry It Right 20-26 July 2012 Jamuni Joy Pop That Corn 27 July-2 Aug 2012 Papaya Bounty Certified Healthy (Organic Food) 3-9 August 2012 Fennel – A Wonder Herb

14-20 December 2012 An Ode To Oats Don’t Pass The Salt 21-27 December 2012 Molten Gold (Honey) Clove That Cold 28 Dec 2012–3 Jan 2013 A Trace Of Zinc Brownie Points (Brown Rice)

24-30 August 2012 Brain Alive 31 Aug-6 Sept 2012 Brain Alive-II Spilling The Beans (Coffee)

6–12 April 2012 Green Baisakhi Live Painfree

7-13 September 2012 Taming Chronic Inflammation - I Health In A Tea Cup

13–19 April 2012 Green Baisakhi - II Don’t Skip Breakfast

14-20 September 2012 Taming Chronic Inflammation - II Watch Your Breath (Respiratory Diseases)

20–26 April 2012 Cherrio! (Cherries) Nature’s Stress-Busters Ashwagandha

21-27 September 2012 Enzyme Boosting Foods - I Bye Bye To Bloating

27 April–3 May 2012 Gotu Kola – ‘The Fountain of Life’

28 Sept-4 Oct 2012 Enzyme Boosting Foods - II

4–10 May 2012 Cooling Off A Healthy Fungi (Mushroom)

5-11 October 2012 Super Nutrient (Glutathione) Not Music To The Ears (Hearing Loss)

11–17 May 2012 Cooling Off (Water)

12-18 October 2012 In Mint Digestion

18–24 May 2012 Amalaki – Nature’s Nurse Soothing The Aura

19-25 October 2012 Vital Organ (Pro-Pancreatic Health Diet) Natural Goodness (Gur)

25-31 May 2012 ‘Veggie Proteins’

26 Oct-1 Nov 2012 Gout Prevention How Healthy Are Diet Sodas?

8-14 June 2012 The ‘Fluid of Life’ (Coconut Water)

7-13 December 2012 ’Allo Aloe The New Topping In Town (Olives)

17-23 August 2012 B Complex Foods A Healthy Monsoon

30 March–5 April 2012 The Sweet Detoxifier (Liquorice) Corn Please!

1-7 June 2012 The Alchemy of Sprouting

30 Nov-6 Dec 2012 Sage Advice

2-8 November 2012 Gastro Health (Brocolli) A Nut, But A Butter Too (Peanut Butter)

15-21 June 2012 The All-Time Favourite (Grapes)

9-15 November 2012 Berry Good (Elderberry) Hunger Feeds (Reducing Hunger)

22-28 June 2012 King & Cool (Mangoes) Don’t Let Your Hair Down

16-22 November 2012 Balle Bael Go Ahead – One Time (Festive Bingeing)

29 June-5 July 2012 What A Melon!

23-29 November 2012 I Care For Fig Also available at www.firdaygurgaon.com/Wellness


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11-17 January 2013

JIT KUMAR

Deviprosad Raychowdhury - Stirring the Triumph Of Labour

Sublime Sunscapes And Mystic Muses

{ Srimati Lal }

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ew Delhi's NGMA (National Gallery of Modern Art) at Jaipur House is currently showcasing a major retrospective of powerful, sublime, sun-drenched landscapes and other paintings by the great Bengal School pioneer artist Gopal Ghose (1913-1980). This body of 220 evolved artworks, marking the brilliant painter's birth centenary on Dec. 5th, are on display until 20th January. The retrospective is an important storehouse of a significant modern 20th-C. Bengal School oeuvre that merits careful viewing. Parallel to this valuable Gopal Ghose exhibit—which has been titled A Jubilant Quest For The Chromatic—is another profound collection of National Treasure paintings: of Rabindranath Tagore's art and drawings, titled The Last

Harvest, and curated by Prof. R. Sivakumar. It is imperative in today's world to spend some time absorbing the highest of fine art, with its healing spiritual energies. We should reflect on the simple, non-materialistic, idealistic  lives led by our nation's greatest artists. Where has such aesthetic truth and beauty disappeared? Our Modernist teachers were untainted, brave souls – choosing to work within uncorrupted, peaceful, ashram  lifestyles. The rejection of urban wiles actually enhanced  their Modernism. One is struck by the purity and grace of these great artists' intense immersion in Prakriti – with Beauty and Truth as their Muse. It is in such uncompromising necessary life-choices that the most elevated and meaningful levels of creativity reside. The social significance of the ongoing NGMA exhibits is

profound. The National Gallery of Modern Art is India's leading art gallery. It was established on March 29, 1954. Housed in what was previously the residential palace of the Maharaja of Jaipur, this imposing New Delhi museum contains 15,000 modern artworks from the mid-19th-C onwards. More recently, in 2009, a new wing was added, with six times more space, an auditorium, a conservation laboratory, a library, research section, a museum shop, and a cafeteria. This necessary 'modernisation' of the NGMA has added greater dimension and potential to what used to be a more traditional display-zone for modern Indian art. The NGMA's premises also present an inspiring body of sculptures, in its permanent open sculpture-gardens – in-

Gopal Ghose's Work


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11-17 January 2013

National Gallery of Modern Art at Jaipur House

Yogi, stone head by Hari Prasad

cluding masterwork-bronzes by Deviprosad Raychowdhury (1899-1975), such as his magnificently Stirring the Triumph Of Labour (1959), depicting a group of daily labourers in motion – which has become emblematic of India's May Day celebrations; and his moving bust of  Gandhi,   our father of Ahimsa and Freedom, immortalised in a moment of intense meditation.  These two bronze artworks are symbolic of what Modern India must remember and strive for today. Among other noteworthy sculptures in the NGMA Gardens are a harmonious  Goddess in Stone by Mangudkar (b.1931), and Yogi, a lyrical 1997 stone head by Hari Prasad. The Gopal Ghose Exhibition has been culled from private collections of the artist's family, Manoj Datta, the Neerja and Mukund Lath Collection of Aakar Prakar Gallery Kolkata, and Abhishek Poddar. Describing his curatorial journey documenting Ghose's oeuvre, the Santiniketan-based Dr. Sanjay Mallik said the following: "In the mid-1990s I was engaged in documenting the visual arts of the 1940s for my doctoral research. It was  then that I became aware of the vast range and diversity that constituted Gopal Ghose's artistic oeuvre. I had the opportunity to examine a substantial cross-section of his works, that were carefully preserved by his family in his Kolkata residence. Gopal is identified  by  a  signature-style marked  by brilliant passages  of

Deviprosad Raychowdhury - bust of Mahatma Gandhi

Goddess in Stone by Mangudkar

pure hue, and the elan  of flourish  in  calligraphic lines." As a painter and an art-theoretician, I have always been inspired by the poetic purity of Gopal Ghose's art. The freedom and joyousness of his Kalighat-calligraphic strokes, and his spontaneous folk-inspired palette of vibrantly-Bengali celebratory hues, comprises a uniquely emotional style that I would describe as 'instinctively Modernist'.  Born on 5 Dec. 1913 in Shyambazar, North Calcutta, the prodigious Gopal spent his childhood shifting between the hills of Simla and the historic cities of Benaras and Allahabad. Such vistas provided him with an intensely-evocative visual and spiritual base.

art-historian Stella Kramrisch. In this NGMA Retrospective one is mesmerised in particular by Ghose's flamboyant watercolours and transcendent mixed-media Landscapes. With their free-flowing strokes executed boldly in an IndianFauvist palette, these landcapes actually seem to be precursors of the Modernist Souza's 'Futuristic' vistas. Gopal Ghose's blazing red blossoms and fiery yellow summer trees rightly place him as our own most elevated romantic painter. His Expressionist brushstrokes reveal the sensitivities of a Van Gogh. The Gopal Ghose collection also contains an exquisite, rare Crystal Glass Etching titled Monkeys—standing 16.4" x 5.5" in dimension—a timelessly-etched modern Flacon depicting monkeys at play, sketched skilfully by the artist on fine glass. Some significant Ink Drawings include a marvellously potent depiction of

Rabindranath Tagore's Work

By 1930 the young artist had joined India's Nationalist Movement, and became a student of Deviprosad when he enrolled at the Government School of Art, Madras. In his unfolding career as an artist of notable originality, Gopal Ghose received appreciative recommendations from such leading personalities as Rabindranath Tagore, Abanindranath Tagore, Nandalal Bose, and the

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Goddess Durga, incorporating Ghose's calligraphy, where he faithfully invokes Durga as Sri Sri Durga. Two stylised inkportraits of his charming pet cats are beautifully sketched, in quintessential Kalighat brushstrokes. The entire collection contains immense treasures of the painter's highly-influential Bengali idiom, well-chronicled with a visual timeline of the artist's journey. Elaborating upon the Tagore exhibition The Last Harvest— which showcases about 208  artworks by Tagore collected from Rabindra Bhavan,  Kalabhavana and the NGMA itself—curator R. Sivakumar emphasised the relevance of Rabindranath's art in modern society. In his words: "Tagore  was open-minded.   He was in contact with other cultures, and believed that we should have the ability to accept them and make them our own.   The value of art lies not just in its style, colour or technique, but also on how it can be used by society.   Tagore  started painting when he was 63, in the year 1924, and continued till his death.  He was burdened with many commitments, so it was difficult for him to take time out exclusively for painting. But he desired to paint all the time. In 13 years he made about 2000 paintings. Thus, the title—The Last Harvest— is apt.”  In Tagore's last years, the poet sought the highest-possible freedom of creative expression – he turned maturely to the depths of 'visual silence',  in a new painterly lexicon.   Tagore's haunting Portraits of his Muse stand in a visual genre all their own.  The NGMA show provides an excellent body of such brilliant artworks.   Rabindranath's eternal, ethereal and mysterious Muse was his sister-in-law Kadambari Devi, who took her own life at a young age – lonely and disillusioned by the pretences of an arranged marriage and upperclass urban life. This solitary, misunderstood woman's tragic and mystical direct gaze haunts and suffuses all of the poet's poignant portraits.   Tagore's landscapes too stand exclusively in a genre of their own:  mysterious, magnetic, drawing the viewer into unexplored and life-changing psychic-poetic realms. I have observed that Tagore used the subtlest of palettes in his art, indicating a mastery and a unique sense of colour that I have described as a 'Poet's Palette'. Blending organic tones of redearth,  sepia, sap green, goldenochre and mystic   neelambariblue, along with all the subtle cross-hatches of the dark penand-inks with which he had always hand-calligraphed his amazing poetry,   Rabindranath evolved a brooding, mesmeric, individualistic   painterly style of his own – one that neither existed before him or since.  By presenting such profound inner visions of India's creative giants—Tagore,   Gopal Ghose and Deviprosad— the NGMA provides one with an intricate and inspiring aesthetic experience this winter season. These Exhibitions must not be missed.u Artist, Writer, & Curator


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11-17 January 2013

Comment

Hark The People Protest

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recent article - Don’t let noise become the voice – by Abhishek Singhvi, MP and jurist, in HT of January 4th, deserves a response. He is, while speaking privately, quite representing the govt point of view.

EDITORIAL Atul Sobti

that we need to better enforce existing structures, rather than ask for any legislative changes. Ironically, the rest of the article then talks of a slew of new measures, structural changes, and finally even legislative changes – that too by the February Budget Session ! We are also lectured and challenged: It is thankful that he considers the Lokpal Bill ‘Can these measures be put in place by pressing movement, Aam Aadmi Party, Team Anna, and a magic button? Can any protestor change the the outpouring of rage over the rape of Damini as system overnight?’ significant avatars of public participation. Clearly the govt needs to first decide where to He then lists some pre-conditions for the success of focus. If it on better enforcement of the current set up public participation: and laws, there is no magic button, or sleight of hand, - it should be people centric (not a personal agenda) needed. It only requires real governance capability - there should be a renunciatory approach; and intent – which unfortunately has been missing - there should be consensus on content, for a few years now. And anyway 65 years should have methodology and approach (no dissensions in public); been quite enough for some basics to work. - and there should be good support Bottom line is that the govt cannot/ structures in place (an independent will not bring in something new fast; No political party press, judiciary, RTI…). should really mind the and cannot get the system to operate Sensible advise. as planned (fast or slow) - though ‘hysterical anchors some Bills can surprisingly be rushed on 24x7 media’ – they Then the story takes a familiar through, come what may. seem to balance the turn – and shows that nothing has invective against really changed. Mr Singhvi, displaying a keen parties pretty well…. Various ‘actions’ taken by the govt. concern for the police, even in this case, are listed: ‘4 arrests in a week; fast-track asks: ‘Does police bashing help?’ No sir, courts on the anvil; and near-certainty of it doesn’t. But does police bashing the conviction of the accused within 6 months – something innocent public help more? The police may have just unprecedented !’ He rests his case. been given their own medicine for once. We need to exclaim, and be appreciative, that He does not relent: ‘Wouldn’t the thousands of something will (hopefully) finally work ! policemen, who were deployed at India Gate, be It is clear that the govt is focused on just the better utilized for preventing crimes?’ Do they do that protestors; the giveaway is the sentence: ‘For the also? Or are they just minding the ‘babalog’ of the protestors, the only satisfaction now would be quick ‘badalog’? Could the ‘privileged’ police not have been and effective punishment’. First off, is the punishment released? Is it not a criminal act, that if you knew not what the govt also should be satisfied with – rather crimes would go unpunished if you put the ‘normal’ than just the protestors? Most importantly, it shows policemen at India Gate, you did not take action to how poorly this govt is reading the mood of the public. release some The govt has not realized, or does not wish to, that this VIP security? is not just about the particular rape. It is decades of frustration and anger pouring out. It is an outpouring And when all else fails, invoke democracy. against the repeated inaction and lies – of always ‘However, let (public participation) not be tainted by being taken for granted; of being ignored - not being irrational, unproductive and digressive behavior of seen as the votes that matter. certain elements. By doing so, we will only belittle Another giveaway: ‘The police’s job of arresting our democracy.’ the culprits is over.’ Yes, the focus is clearly only on Could that statement also be true of our this case. parliament/ parliamentarians? If so, it is not a case of ‘will’; we ‘have already’ Regarding the way forward, the basic premise is belittled our democracy. u

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

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ll that you say in your Cover Story “The Equal Minority” (Dec 21-27, 2012) needs to be implemented. Quickly.  However, I despair if this is all we can do. Policing and legislation can only be stopgap measures. Today we ask for more police. Tomorrow we will ask for accountability for the high taxes we are paying to maintain that force. The moment a different threat comes up, say a politician’s security, the police we deploy to guard women may be moved to guard politicos as that is a more pressing need at that time.   Will we put a policewoman to shadow each woman? And, what about security

for the policewomen? Are they inviolate? Or, if a woman is trained in armed combat, she does not need any other protection? Are we not, as individuals, as society, as cities, abdicating responsibility to “someone else”. That “someone else”, be it policeman, or legislator, also comes from the same society. Lest it sound that I am defending politicians, let me clarify. What I mean is that we have got the politicians we deserve. And we need to make do with that.   We are perhaps fortunate that we live in relatively safe times and in a reasonably peacable, democratic nation. Many of us, in our lifetimes, will not be victims of violent crime. But some of us will be. That

someone, we always believe, will be someone else. Unfortunately, one of these days, that someone will also be me. We need to take responsibility. Starting from our selves, moving on to our families, then our housing and trade societies and radiating outwards. BIG GOVERNMENT cannot solve our problems. We need to. Someone else is not going to create a perfect world for us to swing by, dip our hands and take whatever advantage we can. The world we live in is the sum total of the world each individual creates. If we are happy doing “jugad”, we must know that everyone else may be trying to do the same. What do we do when no-one is looking? If we will abuse a domestic worker, if we will jump a red light, if we will pocket money from the wallet we found lying somewhere, if we will

throw trash out of the car, we are condemning ourselves to live in an environment where there will also be rapes and murders and robberies. Because each one will do whatever his opportunities let him, acceptability to others be damned. If we abuse the freedom and liberties that have been bequeathed to us by our forefathers, we are condemning ourselves to losing them.   Of course the government, police, technology, etc. have to play their part. But let us not abdicate our responsibility. Ankur Mithal

to you. You have invited citizens to come forward to write/contribute in your weekly. A very good idea. I would be keen to write  from time to time, if you may like and approve. As for myself, I am retired   having served the   Central Govt. in various capacities(Technically), as also the industry. A resident of Delhi, earlier, now a resident of Gurgaon for the past ten years(first in Sushant Lok (I), now  in Blossoms II, Sector 51, (Nr Artemis Hospital). O.P Ratra

I

I

have been perusing your Friday Gurgaon Weekly, for the past two months, and have been impressed by the format, contents, and your and your staff efforts to highlight issues/ news, with an appropriate title, GURGAON. My compliments

got your weekly Friday Gurgaon, and I am impressed by the material. I, being a journalist, wanted to suggest some more columns – pet owners, adolescents, relationships, fitness, senior citizens. V.K Narula


11-17 January 2013

B on V ivant 19

Tibetan Yoga

{ Bhavana Sharma }

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n ancient yet dynamic form of exercise, handed over by the Lama masters, is Tibetan yoga, that was practised by them in the monastries of Tibet, to help lead a healthy and long life. This ancient practice of yoga rites combines deep breathing with appropriate yoga movements and

As far as Pranayam is concerned, the Tibetan Yoga technique of breathing provides a way of relaxing. You can direct your breathing to those parts of the body where you experience resistance and tension. In Tibetan Buddhism this concentrated breathing is called ‘riding the horse’. The idea is that, after a while, the breathing will be in control of itself.

The 5 Rites Regimen

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meditation, to generate and channelise our inner chi – for personal power and healing. Today this unique ritual has gained popularity amongst the masses in India, as its benefits are multi-faceted. The exercises are called the five Tibetan Rites – starting with meditation, followed by Pranayam, and leading to the art of positive thinking. u Tarot Reader & Author

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2

5

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1 First Rite Stand erect with arms outstretched, horizontal with the shoulders. Now spin around until you become slightly dizzy. There is only one requirement: you must turn from left to right. 2 Second Rite Lie full length on a rug or bed. Place the hands flat down alongside of the hips. Fingers should be kept close together, with the finger-tips of each hand turned slightly toward one another. Raise the feet until the legs are straight up. If possible, let the feet extend back a bit over the body, towards the head – but do not let the knees bend. Hold this position for a moment or two, then slowly lower the feet to the floor. For the next few moments allow all of the muscles in the entire body to relax completely. Then perform the Rite all over again. While the feet and legs are being raised, it is a good idea to also raise the head; then, as the feet and legs are being lowered to the floor, lower the head too.

{ Odette Katrak }

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he New Year is considered a good time by many to reconnect with friends and acquaintances they have not met for a time. There is a flurry of messages and emails during the first few days, wishing the recipient well for the coming year. Such e-mails continue to appear in inboxes right through the month of January. Last year I received an e-mail on the 31st of January, claiming the distinction of the ‘last new year wish for the year’! The irony is that sometimes such well-meaning mails can have the opposite effect from that intended. You may have expected the person whom you mailed to be pleased that you remembered him/her, and that may indeed be the case. However, it could instead lead to irritation, simply because of the way the mail was sent. Many net-users are unaware of the smaller niceties involved in sending out such wishes, and through this article I hope to shed some light on the ‘expected’ protocol and related etiquette. The biggest frowns on the faces of recipients would most likely be due to a one-liner email that is a stock wish to all and sundry – with every address visible in the ‘To’ column. Bland, impersonal–and even considered rude– because it may literally include every contact in the address book! So I have received mails where I am a recipient along with Tinu from Xyz Bank as well as Sonu from the Traffic Office, and Meena Aunty (who of course I do not know) and Ramu Uncle (no, I do not know him either!). So yes, I appreciate that the sender considered it important to remember to wish me on the auspicious occasion of a new year. But a one-liner wish clubbed with 50 (or sometimes 150) others? If that person really intended to wish me well, would a more personal wish have not been better? Aha, but that would hap-

3 Third Rite Kneel on a rug or mat with hands at the sides, palms flat against the sides of the legs. Then lean forward as far as possible, bending at the waist, with head well forward—chin on chest. The second position of this Rite is to lean backward as far as possible. Cause the head to move still further backward. The toes will prevent you from falling over backwards. The hands are always kept against the sides of the legs. Next come to an erect (kneeling) position, relax as much as possible for a moment, and perform the Rite all over again. 4 Fourth Rite Sit erect on a rug or carpet, with feet stretched out in front. The legs must be perfectly straight -- the backs of the knees must be well down or close to the rug. Place the hands flat on the rug, fingers together, and the hands pointing outward slightly. Chin should be on the chest -- head forward. Now, gently raise the body. At the same time bend the knees, so that the legs (from the knees down) are practically straight

Mail It Right pen only if the person was aware that his/her stock email wishes are perceived to be inappropriate. The person then compounds the issue by sending a ‘reply all’! Not only did 3 people send me such stock wishes, but 7 others (and all these 7 others are not known to me!) decided to do a reply all, and thank the careless sender with something like: “How sweet. Same to you, dear – sent from my Blackberry”. For those particular about mail privacy, spam and etiquette, the frown will only deepen with every ‘reply-all’ received from unknown well-wishers – as well as spoil their till-then-pleasant mood! Okay, never mind if you got it wrong this year. The next time you send out wishes – be it for Diwali or New Year or any festival – here’s the ‘right’ way to do it: 1) Do not send stock email messages with addresses of people unknown to each other in the ‘To’ field. It does not matter that you know them all; if they do not know each other, then email etiquette requires that you use the ‘bcc’ field instead. Many people are also careful about the privacy of their mail ids (and share them very sparingly); you are inadvertently compromising their privacy by a ‘simple’ action of yours. When you type addresses into the ‘bcc’ field, each recipient does not know to whom else the mail has been sent, and the words ‘undisclosed recipient’ appear instead – a very crucial tip for anyone who likes sending general mail forwards as well. So, if you live a very busy life, and have no time for personalised messages, but would still like to send New Year greetings by email, then at least type in all your addresses in the ‘bcc’ field. Be warned however, that a stock private wish is not considered great. In the year 2000,

up and down. The arms, too, will also be vertical, while the body (from shoulders to knees) will be horizontal. As the body is raised upward, allow the head gently to fall backward, so that the head hangs backwards as far as possible. Hold this position for a few moments, return to the first position, and relax for a few moments before performing the Rite again. When the body is pressed up to a complete horizontal position, tense every muscle in the body. 5 Fifth Rite Place the hands on the floor about two feet apart. Then, with the legs stretched out to the rear, with the feet also about two feet apart, push the body, especially the hips, up as far as possible, rising on the toes and hands. At the same time the head should be brought so far down that the chin comes up against the chest. Next, allow the body to come slowly down to a ‘sagging’ position. Bring the head up, causing it to be drawn as far back as possible. The muscles should be tensed for a moment when the body is at the highest point, and again at the lowest point.

right after the birth of my child, when the internet was still young and mail etiquette not yet evolved, I had sent one such stock New Year wish to about 20 recipients (though using bcc). Some chose not to respond, and I later figured out that they were ‘offended’ – an eye-opener for me. 2. For a personal touch, first prepare your basic message, and copy it. Then paste it repeatedly in new individual mails, which you can personalise by sending to each person with only their address in the ‘To’ field (and none in cc or bcc). You can also add a one-liner salutation, and/or sign-off, including the names of children where appropriate. You can be sure that the recipient will feel that you are really reaching out to them, and truly wishing them well. This may mean an extra half-hour (or longer, if your key contact list is larger), but if you are doing this just a few times a year, and you truly value your relationship with these contacts, then it is time well spent. 3. Some people just forward the wishes that they receive, which they find unique or well-worded or interesting, but forget to delete those letters ‘Fw’ from the title, or the name of the original sender from the bottom of the mail – so you have two sets of senders in the same mail! This is akin to receiving a recycled/unwanted gift, which inadvertently had an inscription from the original sender tucked away. The value of such a mail or gift immediately diminishes. 4. Please ensure that you acknowledge every wish you receive. To not do so is considered rude, and lacking in basic courtesy. All this takes is a little thought and attention, and not a great deal of time. u (The writer is a Soft-skills trainer and Social-change activist, with Communication etiquette being a popular topic she trains on)


20

11-17 January 2013

S pecial

Haryanvi Made Easy–Get a taste of the local lingo Revision Course

A Cold Day

Driving School

Shaadi Mubarak

1. It is very cold today Aaj te Ghanaye jaaddaa se

1. I want to learn driving Main gaadi chalana seekhna chahun sun

1. When are you getting married ? Byaah kadh se karva rya hai?

2. What is the temperature today? Aaj kaa taapmaan kitna se

2. Is there a driving school nearby? Dhore sek koi gaadi sikhanala schooll sege ke?

2. Who is the lucky girl? Chhori kaun se wo?

3. It is very foggy Ghanniye dhundh se

3. How much does it charge? Kitne rupaye le se?

3. Do not forget to invite me. Manne nota dena tey na bhool jaayega.

4. I can’t see anything ahead Manne saami kuch na dikhaye de hai

4. Will they help me get a licence? License dilwa denge ke?

4. Will there be a party before the wedding ? Byaah peeche party dega ke mhaare tey?

5. Don’t drive in this fog Is dhundh mein gaddi na chaley

English Speaking Course

5. I will dance a lot in your wedding. Tere byaah main khoob naachunga.

6. Has the fog cleared? Dhundh khatam hogi ke?

1. I want to learn English. Main angreji seekhna chahun su.

6. Let me know if I can help. Manne bata diye kithey maddad chahiye tey.

A Hot Day

2. Do you know of any teacher? Tu kisse master ne jaane se?

1. It is getting very hot. Ghanni garmi ho rahi hai

3. I can go for classes in the evenings. Main saanjh ne paddan ja sakun hun.

1. Will you go out with me? Meri gella bahar chalega?

2. I need to drink something. Manne kuch peen tayi cheeye

4. How much will he charge? Kitne rapay lega woh?

2. We can go and see a movie Film dekhna ja sake hai

3. Let us get away from the sun. Ghaam te door ho levay

5. I want to learn to read and write. Main likhna paddna chahun su.

3. I will pick you up from your house Tanne tere ghar te le lyunga

4. Let us stand in the shade. Chal, chaasi main khade hoyen

6. I will speak to my boss in English then. Pher main apne sahab tey angreji main baat karunga.

4. We can have dinner together Raat ne roti galle kha lenge

5. Switch on the fan Pankha chala de

Test(ing) Time

6. Let some breeze come my way Mhari taraf kimey hawa aan de

1. I am going to write an exam. Main parcha dane tayin jaan laag rya su

Rain, Rain Go Away

2. Can I borrow your pen? Ke main tera pen le saku su?

1. It is raining very hard. Ghanniye tej mhe aareya hai. 2. The garden is flooded. Bagh me paani bhar gya hai. 3. How will I reach office? Main kaam pey kyunkar pahunchunga? 4. Take an umbrella with you. Galle ek chhatri le jayiye.

3. I don't know the answers. Manne iske uttar na bera. 4. I can't finish the paper on time. Main parcha time te khatam na kar sakta 5. I pray I pass. Bhagwan manne pass kar diye. 6. When will the results come? Result kadh aawaga?

5. Don’t eat out in this weather. Is mausam me bahar ka mat khaiye.

Shopping

6. My friend slipped on the road. Mera dost road pe ripat gaya.

1. I need to go to the market. ain bajaar jaana chahun hun. M

Home Delivery

2. Can I go walking? Paaya jaa sakun hun?

1. I need to order some things from the shop Manne dukan te samaan mangana hai 2. Do you deliver at home? Ke tu ghar ney bhej dega? 3. Do you charge extra for home delivery? Ghar ne bhej ne ke rapye lega? 4. How long will you take to reach? Kitni der laage gi? 5. Make sure nothing breaks Kuch bhi tootna nai chahiye

3. Will the shops be open today? Dukaan khulri hungi ke aaj? 4. Is there a clothes shop there? Koi lattya ki dukaan segi ke oddesik? 5. Will I get an rickshaw from there? Odde te koye rickshaw mil jega ke?

It's A Date

5. When do you have to get back? Ulta kis taem aana hai? Lose Weight 1. You need to exercise everyday. Roz barjish karni chaiye tanney. 2. You have put on a lot of weight. Tu ghannai bharya ho gaya hai. 3. Why don’t you start walking? Thoda paidal chaalna shuru kar de. 4. Don’t have fried food. Talya udd khaana bandh karde. 5. Try not to have dinner. Koshish kari raat ka khaana mat khayi. 6. Stop eating out. Bhaar ne khaana bandh kar de. Dengue Scare 1. My head is hurting. Mere Sar main dard ho raa hai. 2. Give me a tablet for it. Mere tayin ek goli de diye. 3. I will not be able to go out anywhere. Main kit bhar na ja paunga. 4. Should I go to see a doctor?. Ke main dactor ne dikhan tayin jaun? 5. Will you come with me? Ke Tu Meri galla chale ga? 6. I hope I don't have dengue. Bhagwan kare mere dengu na pave. 7. Oh No! Doctor has said I have dengue Oh Teri! Dactar ne dengu bata diya.


G lobal 21

11-17 January 2013

New Year Arrives: from Gangnam To Fireworks { Sid Astbury / Takehiko / DPA }

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he year 2013 arrived in style around the world – with millions flocking to Sydney Harbour, Berlin’s party mile, the London Eye and New York’s Times Square for fireworks, while others spent calmer evenings wearing kimonos or dining out. As the traditional globe dropped in New York, revellers remembered Dick Clark, the rock music mentor, who died in 2012, after hosting the celebrations for a US television channel for years, despite a severe strokerelated handicap. In Berlin, tens of thousands of party-goers linked arms in the packed streets, in their attempt to break a world record with

a mass Gangnam Style dance spectacle, inspired by South Korean rapper Psy, and bobbed to the rhythm of the countdown to New Year. An estimated 1 million people flooded the German capital’s famous “party mile,” where the Pet Shop Boys performed, and an 11-minute fireworks sparkled into the air. The streets leading to the Brandenburg Gate were packed, and impossible to navigate, even in the hours before the celebrations. At midnight, 6,000 sky-rockets were let off in an explosion of noise and colour. The city echoed with fireworks throughout the day. The year opened in Sydney with more than 1 million revellers packing Sydney Harbour – for the famous fireworks show that sets New Year’s Eve celebrations rolling westwards around the globe. Visitors to Australia’s biggest city were treated to 100,000 bangs from the 7 tons of fireworks loaded on the bridge, and on barges

2013 & The Superstitious { Leticia Witte / Berlin / DPA }

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n the fairytale Sleeping Beauty, the 13th and wicked fairy is denied an invitation to the feast to celebrate the birth of the king and queen’s daughter – and so she casts an evil spell. Some people don’t leave their home if it’s Friday the 13th, and hotels rarely have a Room 13 for their guests to sleep in. A lot of superstition is connected with the number 13. Therefore, the year 2013 is set to be an interesting one for mathematicians, mystics and the superstitious. “I like to play around with dates and numbers because it’s fun,” says Heinrich Hemme, a Professor of Physics at the University of Applied Sciences in Aachen, Germany. So what does he make of 20 minus 13 equals seven? “In many cultures seven is a lucky number.” And what about 20 plus 13 equals 33? “That’s the age that Jesus died.” The author of a recent opinion piece in The Economist noted that 2013 will be the first year, since 1987, to have all digits different from one another. Hemme’s enthusiasm for the year 2013 gets going when he points to the sum of all the

numbers in the year: six. “Six is quite special and rare. Six is a perfect number, and is equal to the sum of its positive divisors. The next perfect number is 28.” Since the year 1500, the only years to have produced a perfect figure are 1999 and 2004. There are two Fridays in 2013 that will fall on the 13th of a month: in September and December. According to Hemme, there is no other combination of weekday and date more frequent than the two Friday the thirteenths in 2013. “But that has nothing to do with superstition. It’s pure math.” Does Professor Hemme have any worries when he thinks about the new year? “I’m not the slightest bit concerned,” says Hemme, who does not have a favourite number. But many people are superstitious when it comes to “unlucky” numbers. “Any type of belief can provide security,” says Psychologist Peter Gross. That can express itself in belief in God, fairies or numbers. It helps create a sense of security. “Susceptibility to superstition is directly correlated to levels of education. That’s because education systems are constantly

in the harbour. Popstar Kylie Minogue led the countdown. In the Philippines, hospitals were on red alert as authorities made last-minute appeals to shun the usual practice of setting off firecrackers and firing of guns into the air. Filipinos traditionally make noise, including firecrackers, on New Year’s Eve, in the belief that they drive away the bad luck of the past year, and attract good luck in the coming year. Some revellers even discharge guns into the air. In Japan, where many turned to religion (as the country slipped into recession in 2012), people began flocking to shrines to pray for prosperity and good health. About 100 million people are expected to visit shrines over the next three days. The Shinto shrine of Meiji in central Tokyo usually hosts the largest crowd ,of some 3 million people. The shrine is dedicated to Emperor Meiji and his consort Empress Shoken. A security clamp-down in Paris dampened the celebrations, already muted by the City’s ban on personal fireworks. This year there demanding rational and logical thought,” says the Psychologist. But some forms of superstition develop over a period of time due to selective perception. “What most people believe, is perceived as being the truth, and is rarely questioned.” Friday the 13th is considered an unlucky date across Europe. Greece is the exception, where Tuesday is thought to be the unlucky day. The Chinese can be very superstitious when it comes to numbers, but neither 2013 nor 13 are considered unlucky. However, it’s a different matter when it comes to the role 2013 plays in the spoken word. The Chinese for 2013 sounds a little like “I will love you all my life.” A good day to get married in China would be January 13th, 2013, because of the double presence of 13. In Chinese that date sounds a little like “I will love you all my life, and for another lifetime as well.” In France, the figure 13 has a number of associations. Some people try to avoid sitting at a dinner table with that number of guests. But in the Provencal region, 13 desserts are traditionally served at Christmas – including dried fruits and special seasonal cake. Tarot cards are thought to have their origins in France, and the 13th card is represented by death.u

were not even large city fireworks at the Eiffel Tower. But the city of light’s famous landmarks— the Champs-Elysees, the Arc de Triomphe and the banks of the Seine—were crowded with Parisians. With years past in mind, France deployed 53,000 police officials in Paris, Marseille and Strasbourg, to prevent the traditional vandalism of burning cars, that has marked celebrations in years past. In New Delhi celebrations were also muted by the mourning over the 23-yearold woman who was brutally gang-raped and killed in the city. Some clubs cancelled parties, including the 99-yearold Delhi Gymkhana Club

- that usually features a live performance by a Bollywood celebrity. The state-owned Ashok Hotel, a Delhi landmark, also cancelled its New Year’s party, and several private hotels reported low bookings. “Bookings have dropped for year-end parties, as people are not in a year-end partying mood after this incident,” a local newspaper said. u

NY Taxi Drivers Warned On Sex Trafficking { JT Nguyen / New York / DPA }

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ll New York taxi drivers now have to watch a sex trafficking awareness video, to help them avoid promoting prostitution – which is a crime in New York, and carries hefty jail terms and fines. The nine-minute video says that some drivers have used their cabs as “brothels on wheels”, and driven prostitutes from client to client – sometimes taking a cut of the earnings from the pimp. Sex trafficking and promot-

ing of prostitution is punishable by up to 25 years in jail, and a 30,000 dollar fine in New York, the video says. Taxi drivers will now also lose their license if convicted, and face an additional 10,000 dollar fine. The NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission has made the new film mandatory for all drivers who apply for, or renew, their license. Commissioner David Yassky said the aim was to ensure “taxi drivers don’t become part of criminal activity”, while ensuring they don’t profile or discriminate against any potential passengers. u

Global Natural Disaster Losses In 2012 { Jean-Baptiste Piggin, Sebastian Raabe / Munich / DPA }     

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he United States bore the brunt of last year’s natural disasters, accounting for two-thirds of 160 billion dollars in worldwide damages, Munich Re, the world’s largest reinsurance group said. Drought, superstorm Sandy and other disasters in the US caused 67 per cent of last year’s global disaster damage. However, the global total for natural disaster losses was down from 400 billion dollars in 2011. In an average year, the US accounts for 32 per cent of worldwide damage, partly a reflection of the high value of its property. Munich Re said that if it had not been for Sandy, which slammed into New York on October 29, it would have been an exceptionally safe year. It said the worldwide death toll from last year’s disasters was 9,500, compared to the average of 106,000 annually over the past decade. Munich Re said this was because comparatively few disasters hit developing or emerging nations, where death tolls from a storm or an earthquake are generally far higher, than when a wealthy nation is hit. Typhoon Bopha in December, in the Philippines, was the worst single event with more than 1,000 deaths. u


22

11-17 January 2013

Money And Relationships { Sandra Trauner / Berlin / DPA }

“I

have to make a confession,” a young bridegroom said to his bride, shortly before their wedding. “I only earn 2,000 dollars a month. Do you think you can make a living with that?” “In a pinch, yes,” the bride replies in this old joke. “But what do YOU want to live off?” Men earn money and women spend it – this cliche is true for less couples compared to just a generation ago. But has the way of handling money among married couples truly changed? Many believe it hasn’t. Our relationship towards money is archaic. If couples fight about money, then this is usually subconsciously connected to financial conflicts in their family background, according to Professor Rolf Haubl, a Social Psychologist in Germany. A “money handling style” is learned early on, and then remains stable. “Often latent relationship problems are expressed through money,” says Haubl, who is the Director

of the Sigmund Freud Institute in Frankfurt. Money signifies something different for men and women. Men link money to success and power, while for women it signifies security and autonomy. In our society, where money plays such an important role, it becomes a medium that “structures all our relationships surreptitiously,” Haubl says. He considers “monetary competence” one of the most important cultural techniques. “Not only should we learn early on what to do with money, but also what it does with us.” Jochen Cunz, a Relationship Counsellor, rarely meets couples that fight over money. He has coached almost 500 couples, and helped them through crisis situations – in his more than 20 years work experience. The most common problems

Video Gaming An Addiction? { Sid Astbury / Sydney / DPA }

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ustralia’s Okan Kaya likes ‘Call of Duty: Black Ops II’. In November he played the blockbuster video game for a world-record 122 hours. “I’m a massive fan,” he said. “I’ve been playing the series since the World War days, and absolutely love it.” Circumstantial evidence suggests gaming can be as addictive as gambling. In July a Diablo III fan in Taiwan collapsed and died after a 40hour session at an internet cafe. Australian National University Psychologist Olivia Metcalf has found concrete evidence that gaming is indeed addictive. For her research—which showed that addicted gamers had trouble focusing on other tasks—she gathered volunteers. They represented: those who were addicted, those who were regular players but who were not addicted, and a control group of non-players. They were tested for their responses to gaming-related words. “We found that the attention

system of an excessive gamer gives top priority to gaming information,” she said. “Even if they don’t want to think about gaming, they’re unable to stop themselves.” She said that the phenomenon, known as attentional bias, is common among heroin, tobacco, alcohol and gambling addicts, and is thought to be a factor in developing an addiction. “Each type of addictive substance or behaviour has unique risks associated with them,” she said. “The unique aspect of excessive gaming is the sheer amount of time that can be spent playing video games.” Does spending a very long time gaming make you an addict? No, she said: “The

New Mercedes S-Class { Stuttgart / DPA }

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ercedes-Benz is said to be preparing a stretched version of its next-generation S-Class limousine for wealthy customers – who want more rear legroom, since they usually let a chauffeur do the driving. The new long-wheelbase model has been extended by between 13 and 15 centimetres, according to Germany’s auto-zeitung journal. The S-Class became the top-of-the-range model for the Mercedes group after the Stuttgart maker dropped the super-luxury Maybach marque, following poor sales. The standard, short version of the new S-Class is set to go on sale in summer 2013, with the LWB variant slated for introduction later in the year, or early 2014. The new S-Class features a host of innovations – including numerous safety assistants, and an on-board camera system, which identifies potholes and adjusts the suspension automatically, to ensure maximum passenger comfort. u

are communication and sexual problems. “During a marriage money is rarely an issue,” the therapist says. But after a separation, money often comes up. “Emotional guilt is paid in money.” Another observation: “Women use their power over children, and men over money.” If you look at your circle of friends, you will find two types of couples. One will follow the mantra: “Why shouldn’t we share our money? We share everything else as well: children, house, bed, name – why not the bank account?” The other group will have a different point of view: “It’s unthinkable for me to give up my bank account. It’s living proof of being autonomous.” Both groups will probably have known couples from their childhood where the husband paid his wife a monthly housekeeping allowance. “Younger couples are less likely to share a bank account than their parents,” says one expert for the area of bank account strategy. The reason: “The pursuit of financial individuality and autonomy tends to result in more single bank accounts.” u majority of gamers enjoy games without any consequences, even if they are spending some days playing for long periods.” So world champion Okan Kaya can rest easy: addiction to gaming is not a product of too long at the screen. u

Wireless Charging For Electric Cars { Tokyo / DPA }   

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oyota has started field trials with a wireless charging system, that allows electric cars to replenish their batteries, without needing a point of contact. The system uses magnetic resonators buried in the road surface of a parking space, and does away with the need to plug the car into electricity mains. The wireless charging device is contained in a mat, measuring about 50 centimetres across. When the car is parked, the mat is raised automatically, and the AC power is delivered via the magnetic field created under the vehicle. The first phase of testing starts in Toyota City in January. Engineers hope to reproduce genuine everyday conditions. Toyota says a typical Prius-sized model can be recharged in 90 minutes, using the wireless induction system – the same amount of time needed for conventional cable charging. One slight drawback is that drivers who do not position the car directly above the magnetic mat will find that charging takes slightly longer. Toyota has not announced when the wireless charging technology will go into series production. u

G lobal

Zumba Off The Pounds { Britta Schmeis / Hamburg / DPA }

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n the 1980s US actress Jane Fonda brought aerobics into fitness studios and, thanks to her workout videos, people’s homes as well. Then came “legs, bums and tums” workouts, Pilates and fit-fight. The latest fitness craze is Zumba, a trademarked, Latin-inspired “dance fitness-party”, with an accent on fun – that purportedly burns up to 1,000 kilocalories an hour, without strain. “Zumba’s secret is a blend of different dances – like salsa, merengue, jazz dance and some aerobics, the most important thing being the music,” remarks Janina Latza, a spokeswoman for Florida-based Zumba Fitness. In contrast to aerobics or similar fitness programmes, she says, Zumba does not require learning a complicated choreography that all participants must perform synchronously; rather, it is based on the sheer fun of moving to music. “The focus is clearly on fun,” says Miriam Speckmann, a certified Zumba instructor at Sportspass, a sports club in Hamburg, Germany. “What I demonstrate in front of the group is merely a recommendation. The main thing is for them to party, and not slavishly imitate certain steps.” Although Zumba is advertised as suited for everyone, including beginners, Latza notes, “Some feel for rhythm, and a bit of dance training, are very helpful.” Zumba is said to be the product of a “happy acci-

dent.” In the mid-1990s, in his native Colombia, fitness trainer Alberto Perez forgot to bring his traditional aerobics music to a class. So he improvised, by playing his own music mix from tapes—mainly salsa and merengue—that he had in his backpack. The participants were delighted, and a new fitness concept was born. US entrepreneurs marketed the concept worldwide under the brand name Zumba, a registered trademark since 2001. “That gave a name to a dynamic dance and exercise form,

that will surely be replaced by another in a few years,” comments Ingo Froboese, a Professor at the Health Centre of the German Sport University in Cologne. He also points to risks for people with neurological handicaps—because of the fast, twisting movements and sequences—as well as for people with joint problems (because of the many jumps). Froboese calls the claim – that an hour of Zumba can burn as many as 1,000 kilocalories – “totally exaggerated.” The chief purpose of physical fitness, he adds, is not short-term calorie-burning, but increasing the body’s basal metabolic rate, which can be achieved with any regular athletic activity. u

BMW brings 4G to the Cabin { Munich / DPA }

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MW has ushered in the next generation of mobile internet for car users. Owners with a BMW Car Hotspot require a LTE-capable SIM card, which is simply slotted in the hotspot in the usual way. The adapter plugs into the on-board router, which gets power from the standard cigarette lighter. BMW was one of the first carmakers to offer in-car internet access, back in 2001. Passengers can enjoy high-

Generous Tycoon { Sid Astbury / Sydney / DPA }

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amously generous mining mogul, Clive Palmer, threw a Christmas party at his five-star resort at Coolum, Queensland, for 650 Australians a lot less wealthy than himself. “In the final analysis (in life), materialism isn’t all that’s important,” he said. “The only purpose of money is to spend it for the

speed net access, using up to eight devices. The hotspot comes with a built-in battery pack and an antennae, allowing the unit to operate for up to 60 minutes independently of the vehicle. Long Term Evolution (LTE), also known as 4G, is one of the fourth-generation mobile standards. It enables the smoother streaming of music and videos – from the internet to mobile devices. In areas where no 4G is available, the BMW device switches to the UMTS or GSM network. u

benefit of other people,” he said. Two years ago Palmer spent 10 million Australian dollars (10.3 million US dollars) on end-of-year bonuses for his employees – which included 55 Mercedes-Benz cars and 1,500 all-expenses-paid trips to Fiji. Asked how much the Christmas party for people in need would cost, Palmer said: “I don’t know. I don’t worry about those things. I just sign the cheques.” u


11-17 January 2013

Terrace Gardens

G -scape 23 JIT KUMAR


Friday Gurgaon Jan 11-17, 2013  

Friday Gurgaon Jan 11-17, 2013

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