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19-25 October 2012

Vol. 2 No. 9  Pages 24  ` 7

Women-in-Laws

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o protect victims of sexual assault at the crucial time of the filing of an FIR, the state govt. has assigned a woman lawyer to each of the Police Stations of the City. This is to ensure that a correct FIR is filed, the victim is not harassed, and also receives emotional support. ...Pg 9

Bahadurgarh

T

his border town to the North is getting ready for Metro connection. The 2-time MLA Rajinder Joon is working on an acrossthe-board development agenda, while ensuring that crime remains a bad memory of the past. ...Pg 13

The Gifted

C

hildren are anyway a gift of God; and some are even more ‘gifted’ on their own. They may not be challenged, but do need ‘special’ treatment. ...Pg 14

Exporters Exit

A

fter the stirs in the auto industry, the next casualty seems to be the exporters – esp. garments exporters. Literally fed up with the local support, at a time when they need stronger support due to lower global demand, they are shutting shop, or moving elsewhere. Where will the future jobs come from? ...Pg 21

A Bird's-Eye View { Shilpy Arora/ FG }

I

t all started as a hobby for Bill 15 years ago – meandering through the woods with binoculars and camera, and waiting for hours to catch a glimpse of the beautiful birds. Today Bill is credited with discovering one of the world’s rarest bird species, Stoliczka’s Bushchat, at Sultanpur Sanctuary. It was in 2001 when he saw a small bird with a little white tail, in a patch of coarse grass. His astonishment grew when, two years later, he saw the same bird at Sultanpur. He remained in the Park for 4 months, and discovered that it is host to six male and two female Stoliczka’s Bushchats. “I first thought it was a wheatear; but its typical puff-and-roll behaviour made me realise that I have found Stoliczka’s Bushchat, one of the rarest birds, last spotted some 80 years ago,” says Bill. Ramana Athreya, an avid birdwatcher from Pune, visited the Park in 1995. He saw an unidentified bird, a small babbler, with an olive-grey plumage, and a black cap. After six years of keen observation and rigorous study, he announced his discovery to the world. “It was an unidentified species. The forest department acknowledged my effort, by giving me the opportunity to have the bird named after one of my family members – Bugun,” says Ramana. With the increasing number of people taking to the sport of bird watching, new discoveries have become common at Sultanpur Sanctuary. The sport, once associated with Londoners, has attracted bird lovers and wildlife conservationists in the City.

Competitive bird races

To encourage bird watching, many corporates are sponsoring bird races in the City. HSBC, for instance, sponsors India Bird Race in various cities – such as Bangalore, Pune, and Gurgaon. A Bird Race is a dawn-to-dusk sport, and more a human race! A group of four bird-watchers spend the entire day 'birding' in and around a particular area. The goal is to record as many species of birds as possible, and to spot “lifers”— a bird nobody has seen before. Then, later in the evening, teams meet for an interactive session, wherein two adjudicators analyse the observations of the teams, and announce the winners. “One of the teams created a record, by spotting nearly 90

{ Shilpy Arora / FG }

S

aleem, 9, was studying in a private school under the underprivileged quota (reservation). He was often thrown out of class, as he never combed his hair properly. “One day I saw him holding a tuft of his hair in his hand. When I asked, he said that it was chopped off by one his teachers,” says Saleem’s mother. She pulled out her son from the school. She also blames the school for making her child stand separately during the assembly, and sit in a back row in the classroom. Most of the private schools in the City are reluctant to take in children from the economically weaker sections. When Friday Gurgaon approached about 20 reputed private schools in

Asha Pandey

{Inside}

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

species in a single day, at Sultanpur,” says Prasanan, a Mumbaibased bird watcher. Prasanan’s bird watching expeditions are usually followed by street plays, performed by a few children of his group, to spread the message of conservation and protection of birds. “I like my character of a crow because it is one of the most intelligent birds,” smiles Chaitanya, son of an IT-professional, who visits the Sultanpur Sanctuary every year. “The biggest achievement of our bird watching expeditions has been creating awareness among our children about the winged wonders,” smiles Prasanan. Started some five years ago, the sport is gaining popularity even in small towns like Panchkula and Ambala. Last year, a bird race at Morni Hills in Panchkula saw the participation of more than 10 teams. “The reason why bird watching is becoming a popular sport is that one doesn’t need to invest a lot. All you need is a binocular, a notebook, and time to study the guides on bird behaviour,” says Bill.

Our Mental Challenge

Contd on p 19 

the City to speak on the issue of the 25% quota (reservation) for underprivileged children, none wished to come forward. The schools that proudly invite media to cover their state-of-theart facilities, and their initiatives to have special educators in the classrooms, are keeping mum over this issue. Unfortunately, nothing has changed since the times of Guru Dronacharya. The poor children have never had access to the same education, the same exposure, as the privileged. While for some students the-state-of-the-art schools have come as a boon, a few students find the education and facilities 'useless'. They share their experiences and expectations from the private schools. (See Box) Contd on p 6 


02

19-25 October 2012

Get That Glamorous Bollywood Smile

H

ave you ever wondered how that Model or T.V star got that smile – So WHITE, SO STRAIGHT.. SO PERFECT! Is it good genes? The truth is, that not everyone is born with a perfect, ever-lasting smile, and there are high chances that the smile you just saw has been designed by a dental professional. We take a look at how Dr. Dheeraj Setia of The Dental Roots—which is centrally located in Sushant Lok Phase-1—gives his patients a 'Red Carpet Worthy Smile' in just two short visits. Did you know that if your teeth are crooked, cracked, discoloured or misaligned, there are simple and convenient solutions that can give you a Smile which you always dreamed of, in no time at all!

What is a smile makeover?

Now get your copy of Reading & Riting is the Rithmetic - a compilation of the Editorials and cover stories of Atul Sobti. Get your hard copy at Quill and Canvas, South Point Mall, DLF Phase V, or order it online at ebagsfull.com Cover Price-Rs. 350

A smile makeover involves one or more cosmetic, dental or facial rejuvenation procedures to improve the aesthetics of your smile. A smile makeover to one person could mean something completely different to another, and it is a very individual choice. For example, some people want the perfectly white Bollywood smile makeover, or the celebrity smile with pearly white porcelain veneers. Other people may just want a simple improvement, such as the replacement of amalgam fillings with composite and teeth whitening.

can also be covered with porcelain veneers for a faster solution. n Chipped, broken teeth can be repaired – the treatment will depend on the extent of damage, but the options include cosmetic bonding, porcelain veneers or porcelain crowns. n Missing teeth can be replaced – gaps between your teeth can cause functional problems as well as being unsightly. Often, a smile makeover involves the replacement of existing restorations or gaps between teeth. Solutions include dental implants, a dental bridge or a denture. n  Gaps between your teeth can be closed to give your smile a more even look. This can be achieved instantly with porcelain veneers such as lumineers. Orthodontics can also be used to move the teeth and close the gaps between them. Invisalign invisible braces, Lingual Braces are a few options n If you have a gummy smile, this can easily be remedied by surgical or laser gum contouring. n  If you are not satisfied with the colour of your teeth, or if you have badly stained teeth, they can be treated with prophyflex cleaning or professional teeth whitening. n The end result of a smile makeover for many people is a smile to be proud of, one that is straight, white and perfectly aligned. u

How can a smile makeover improve my smile ?

Whatever the reasons for your dissatisfaction with your smile, there are many different ways in which you can improve your smile using modern cosmetic dentistry: n  Crooked teeth can be straightened with Invisalign braces or conventional orthodontics. They

A - 740, Sushant Lok Phase I, Gurgaon. Tel: 0124 - 4040003, 4040004, M: 9650440004


19-25 October 2012

WORKSHOP  NIGHTLIFE  EXHIBITION  MUSIC  ART  DANCE

03

Coming Up

RNI No. HARENG/2011/39319 Postal Regn. No. GRG/35/2012-2014 VOL.–2 No.–9  19-25 October 2012

Editor:

Atul Sobti

Sr. Correspondent: Abhishek Behl Correspondents:

Maninder Dabas

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

Anita Bagchi Shilpy Arora

Sr. Designer:

Amit Singh

Designers:

Virender Kumar

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

19th to 23rd

 Sahasrabdi Durga Puja Committee, South City-I, Q Block Park, South City 1 , President: Ghatak Mob.: 9818425919  Sushant Lok Durga Puja Committee, Sushant Lok-1, C-block , Near Paras Hospital, Adhikari, Mob.: 9811202608  Suncity Durga Puja Committee, Suncity Community Center., Gen. Secretary: Shankar Ghosh Mob.: 9818632498  Maruti Vihar Durga Puja Committee, Maruti Vihar Community Center Gen. Secretary: Arup Bhattacharjee, Mob.: 9999391288

Canadian Education fair @ Crowne Plaza Hotel Date: October 19 Time: 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm

Festivities

Puja Celebrations @Puja Grounds, (near Apollo Clinic, behind Jal Vayu Tower), Sector 56 Date: October 20 to 24

C

elebrate the Durga Puja festival by visiting the Puja Pandal organised by Bangiya Parishad. Besides the colourful and vibrant displays at the venue, there will also be plenty of fun, food and entertainment for the whole family. Contact: 9818451797

Food

Durgotsava @ Ki Hangla, DLF Phase 4 Date: October 19-24 Time: 11:00 am onwards

A

special treat for a special occasion. Indulge in the scrumptious menu specially crafted for the festive season. Feast on dishes like 'Ghugni', Fish Fry, Fish Finger, 'Beguni', 'Deemer Devil', and 'Mishti Doi'.

Original Booking In Gurgaon Special Project for Army / Central Govt. Employees

Contact: Ms. Saroj – 8800930085 sarojtanya@gmail.com

T

he Canadian University Application Centre presents an Education Fair. Students get an opportunity to meet representatives from Universities and Colleges in Canada. They can learn about the different courses available – Bachelors and Masters degrees and Post Grad diploma courses. Contact: 9958311166

Exhibition

“from the outside in” At MOVA1 studio 42, Ashoka Crescent, DLF Phase-1, Golf Course Road, Gurgaon Date : 22nd Oct – 20th Nov Time – 11AM – 6 PM

S

howcasing the latest works from 3 leading design studios – SOTODECOR, HEIRLOOMS & MOVA1 – that explore nature both in its delicate details and magnificent strengths. Bringing you the works of furnitures, lights & home interiors.

Accts. & Admin Mgr: Deba Datta Pati Head – Sales & Marketing:

Ankit Srivastava

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.

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

`7

319

RNI No. HARENG/2011/39

For The Other Half

P3

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

{Inside}

Astrology

T

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

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. forces that It is this flux of extreme balance – the unravel to threatening is and 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 hinterland that and the vast rural is under once comprised Guru-gram, – under and 210 Panchayats threat of being submerged Nagar, Manesar); of a Millennium the new identity that cover 291 villages. a week with in ‘New GurgaFriday Gurgaon spent City, with its capital checkthe role of the State Commissioner Meena, on’. It is here that the forces Deputy will is executed – play; to ensure that into comes ing how the State’s 17 ...Pg that has known all the populace. of development touch in this historic area, since the Commissioner Gurgaon Deputy some form of governance of Being is the point man of Guru Dronacharya. power, P.C Meena, who in the Dis- time capital seat of the State Administration close to Delhi, the Gurgaon is much been influenced by trict, concurs that the District has also itself. The District and social developments political more than the City the viz. Gurgaon includes 3 sub-divisionsPataudi; 5 teh- taking place there. Contd on p 8  ,and (North and South) Pataudi, Farukh sils (Gurgaon, Sohna,

G

Prakhar PaNdey

Puja Schedule

Pankaj Yadav Sunil Yadav Manish Yadav

Please Visit Us At en Emergency Servicem www.fridaygurgaon.com Ask Your Newspaper Vendor For Friday Gurgaon. M

asterchef Top 5 Vijaylaxmi shares a Recipe exclusively for FG readers.

...Pg 18

little, for so long, with so We have done so much,do anything with nothing. to we are now qualified

Let’s Be Civil

P

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

Regular Features Food Take

...Pg 6

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

{ 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 call in. But when there which people can 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 fortunate that they for they had to ask situation in which these in work who help; but for the people is distraught people services, helping is Police

A

100 – Police Emergency main Police

Line

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 from which he can closed glass cubicle day-tothe manages he survey all activity, PCR. “We have stateday operations of the equipment, and I can of-the-art servers and of the one has safely say that Gurgaon the country.” in most advanced PCRs


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19-25 October 2012

R eviews/L istings

BOOK

CINEMA

Book Of 9 Tales { Alka Gurha }

I

f you take pleasure in reading short stories, ‘Another Man’s Wife’, by Manjul Bajaj, will pique your interest in more ways than one. Manjul is a Gurgaon based writer, and her first book, ‘Come, Before Evening Falls’, was also a work of fiction. Since she has worked in the field of rural development, one gets a sense that her pen rests on the pulse of small town hopes and aspirations. Such is the felicity with which Manjul writes, that this assortment of nine stories meld together to become one book of passion and aspiration. The first story begins with a shocker, as Samina quips, “Ammi, you are a whore.” Samina is the daughter of a kathak dancer who was forced to marry an older man. The aging husband is more concerned about exporting hybrid mangoes than about his two-timing wife and three children. The conflict between

Another Man’s Wife Author: Manjul Bajaj Publisher: Hachette Price: Rs. 350 Genre: Fiction/ Short Stories

CINEMA

THIS WEEK Big Cinemas, Palam Vihar Student Of The Year Time: 10.00 am, 11.30 am, 1.00 pm, 4.00 pm, 7.00 pm, 10.00 pm Oh My God Time: 3.50 pm, 10.30 pm Delhi Safari (3D) Time: 10.00 am, 1.50 pm, 6.30 pm Premium Rush Time: 12.00 pm, 8.30 pm English Vinglish Time: 2.20 pm, 5.00 pm, 7.40 pm, 10.20 pm PVR: Ambience Premier Student Of The Year Time: 10.30 am, 11.30 ♦ K. Selvaraj, IPS, Additional DG Police, Crime has been given the special responsibility of tackling Crime against Women. The State Govt, nervous at the recent spate of crimes against women, has also proposed a State-wide single helpline number for women. ♦ Photo electoral rolls are now available at all polling stations and the District Election Office in the Mini Secretariat, for perusal by voters. You can also verify status from the website www.ceoharyana.nic.in. Those who will attain the age of 18 years as on January 1, 2013, can also apply. ♦ Gurgaon circle tops in electricity theft. ♦ DHBVN raided 1054 premises and found 312 cases of proven theft in its area, in a 10 day period recently. A penalty of Rs 2.4

the mother and daughter, over the mother’s paramour, Shaakir, is intriguing. One can feel the protagonist's angst when she says, “A girl is never born alone. From birth she is accompanied by two invisible twin sisters, named Lajja and Sharm.” The sections where Kathak steps are used as a metaphor for lovemaking make for compulsive reading. Then we have a contractor at a dam site who is obsessive in his desire for a tribal woman. The obsession compels him to bring the tribal woman home and hold her captive - hence the title, ‘Another man’s wife’. A servant boy, Bhiku, accidentally steps into the bathroom to find his employers’ teenage daughter in the shower, and his life changes dramatically. A couple, Venkata and Rohini, are hoping to reignite passion and revive memories of their honeymoon in a houseboat in Kashmir, in order to conceive a child. Almost all the stories explore the concepts of identity, power equations, and familial expectations – and yet do not succumb to the clichés those themes often entail. Written in appealing prose, most stories remain etched in memory long after the reader has finished turning the last page. ‘Another Man’s Wife’ is a compilation of nine finely rendered tales of ordinary people reacting to extraordinary situations. u

am, 1.30 pm, 2.30 pm, 4.30 pm, 5.30 pm, 7.30 pm, 8.30 pm, 10.30 pm, 11.30 pm Argo Time: 10.30 am, 12.55 pm, 3.20 pm, 5.45 pm, 8.10 pm, 10.35 pm Premium Rush Time: 10.30 am, 2.45 pm, 7.00 pm, 11.15 pm Delhi Safari (3D) Time: 12.30 pm, 4.45 pm, 9.00 pm English Vinglish Time: 10.15 am, 6.15 pm, 10.55 pm Oh My God Time: 1.00 pm Looper Time: 3.45 pm Taken-2 Time: 9.00 pm PVR: Ambience Gold Student Of The Year crores has been levied. ♦ The State Govt would construct 187 new sub-stations and augment capacity of 163 existing sub-stations in the next 3 years, at a cost of Rs 3,093 crores, to ensure that the transmission and distribution matches the expected increased power generation capacity. ♦ The power distribution system of 11KV level, in 36 towns in Haryana (incl. Gurgaon), will be strengthened and renovated, as also provided an IT base, under a separate Central Govt programme. ♦ The first phase of AIIMS II, the Outreach Out-Patient Dept (OOPD), would be operational at Bhadsa (Rohtak Dist) within a month. ♦ The National Accreditation Board for (Testing and Calibration) Laboratories (NABL) has recommended

Time: 11.00 am, 2.00 pm, 5.00 pm, 8.00 pm, 10.55 pm Taken-2 Time: 11.15 am English Vinglish Time: 1.15 pm Oh My God Time: 4.00 pm Delhi Safari (3D) Time: 6.45 pm Premium Rush Time: 9.00 pm Argo Time: 10.55 pm Address: 3rd Floor, Ambience Mall, NH-8 Website: www.pvrcinemas.com PVR MGF: MGF Mall Student Of The Year Time: 10.05 am, 10.55 am, 1.05 pm, 1.55 pm, 2.45 pm, 4.05 pm, 4.55 pm, 7.05 pm, 7.55 pm, 8.45

THE WEEK THAT WAS continuation of accreditation of DHBVN’s meter and Current Transformer & Potential Transformer (CT&PT) testing laboratory. DHBVN is the first power utility in India to have this accreditation. ♦ Now Kherki Daula toll plaza (at the other end of Gurgaon) is under scrutiny, for traffic jams. ♦ A youth has been held for raping a 6 year old. ♦ Sarpanch at Sasan village suspended over the death of ‘Mahi’ in an illegal borewell. ♦ An engineering student, a girl, commits suicide – as she did poorly in exams. ♦ A woman commits suicide; her relatives accuse husband of torture for dowry. ♦ 2 bike riders dead, after accident

Aiyyayo Flop a { Vijaya Kumar }

W

hen I first heard about Anurag Kashyap’s latest production Aiyyaa (which in Tamil means a respectable person), I thought that it referred to the Director, Sachin Kundalkar. In Marathi film circles he is acknowledged as a creative film maker, and has won critical acclaim for his works. Then, I saw some promos, and thought that there was going to be some resemblance to Vidya Balan’s The Dirty Picture. The movie is about a caricatured characterisation of a middle-class Maharashtrian girl and her family members, her colleague in the library, and her fantasy lover (played by the Malay-

Aiyyaa directed by: Sachin Kundalkar cast: Rani Mukerji, Prithviraj genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance alam actor Prithvi Raj, whose only dialogues come at the end). Yet Director Sachin Kundalkar manages to create such a mess that Aiyyaa defies description. While it is raunchy in places, it is downright vulgar in quite a few others. I was left wondering if this film was meant as a parody of such song and dance productions from the South! And Sachin Aiyyaa, why are you so obsessed with smells? On the one hand you have visitors who close their noses when they pass the garbage dump in front of Rani’s house, while on the other you have Rani smelling the apparently sensuous body odour of Prithvi Raj. All we smelt is a flop! u

pm, 10.05 pm, 10.55 pm, 11.45 pm Premium Rush Time: 10.00 am, 12.30 pm, 4.45 pm, 9.00 pm Argo Time: 10.15 am, 4.25 pm, 6.50 pm, 9.15 pm, 11.40 pm Delhi Safari (3D) Time: 10.15 am, 2.30 pm, 6.45 pm, 10.55 pm Cameraman Gangatho Rambabu (Telugu) Time: 1.30 pm, 5.45 pm Damarukam (Telugu) Time: 11.45 am, 7.30 pm Jawan Of Vellimala (Malayalam) Time: 10.30 am Ayalum Njanum Thammil (Malayalam) Time:4.30 pm Taken-2 Time: 12.00 pm, 9.00 pm

Looper Time: 2.00 pm English Vinglish Time: 12.45 pm, 6.15 pm, 10.55 pm Oh My God Time: 3.30 pm, 10.30 pm Address: 3rd floor, MGF Mall, MG Road Ph: 0124- 4530000 Website: www.pvrcinemas.com

off MG Road – another is critical. ♦ A Delhi resident is found dead in Sec 5 plot ♦ The owner, caretaker and cook of an NGO, Suparna ka angan, have been booked for child abuse. ♦ A youth opens fire at a roadside hotel, when denied food. ♦ A Rohtak man is booked for threatening the life of a City developer. ♦ Feeling ‘cheated’ of lakhs, a man hires goons to abduct 3 of the top officials of the company that ‘owed’ him commission. ♦ Senior officials of a private sanitaryware firm booked for fraud, in dealings with a local hotel. ♦ A car is taken away at gunpoint on Sohna Road, late at night. ♦ Burglars rob a lawyer’s house in Sec 31, caught on CCTV. ♦ 3 persons, including the head of a primary school, are held for bike robberies.

♦ Various self-defence workshops held in the City.

PVR Sahara: Sahara Mall Student Of The Year Time:10.00 am, 1.00 pm, 4.00 pm, 7.00 pm, 8.00 pm, 9.55 pm, 10.55 pm Delhi Safari (3D) Time: 10.00 am, 5.45 pm English Vinglish Time: 3.00 pm Oh My God Time: 12.15 pm

♦ L turn from NH 8 to Ambience has been allowed again, by the High Court. ♦ An auto finance company’s server was hacked. ♦ Maruti workers in Manesar plant sign new wage agreement. However, active local unions are asking for protest meetings to be held, against the alleged indiscriminate arrest of workers. ♦ HSIIDC and industry are fighting over who is liable to pay for the increased land compensation (about Rs 1,000 crores total) to farmers, as ordered by the Court. ♦ Reliance SEZ case closure deferred. Reliance had backed out, early this year and asked for a refund of over a thousand crores.


19-25 October 2012

C eleb W atch

05

Preity Ishkqy

B

ollywood actor Preity Zinta visited the Kingdom of Dreams to promote her upcoming movie Ishkq in Paris. Anumod Sharma, Chairman, Apra Group of Companies, presented her the Golden Key to the Kingdom. The actor interacted with customers of the Kingdom of Dreams, over a brief entertaining musical presentation. She also invited young people onto the stage, and presented impromptu dance steps to the music of Ishkq in Paris. The performance was followed by the distribution of audio CDs of the movie.

Walk For A Cause

A

ctress Amisha Patel walked the ramp for a social cause in The Parade-2012 Walk for a cause Fashion Show. Dedicated to “Girl Child Education and Women Empowerment”, the Event was held at Ramada Gurgaon Central. Models, along with the actress, walked the ramp, showcasing the trendy new collection by designer Monika Dalal. Mohit Mittal, MD of Ramada Gurgaon Central, said, “Through this initiative we would like to create awareness aboutcrimes against women.”

Kitchen Art

A

Blue Ribbon Star

A

BoConcept

B

Sales Mastery Workshop, conducted by an International Sales expert from Australia, Bernadette McClelland, was held at Leela Kempinski. Shahnaz Husain received the Blue Ribbon Star – An Emblem of Highest Excellence as a Global Woman Enterpreneur, for her phenomenal achievements in the field of Ayurveda. Tanuja Vashistha – CEO BRICCKS (Blue Ribbon Integrated Coaching, Consultancy & Knowledge Solutions) was also present at the occasion.

oConcept, a Denmark based premium urban interior brand organised a splendid evening at its store in Global Foyer. BoConcept played host to important architects and socialites, such as Sundeep Khanna, Charu Parashar, Shalini Kochar, Vijay, and Poonam. The guests were impressed with the European designs and their functionality. “We were delighted to have a mix of wonderful people here at the Store. This was a special event, and as we got an overwhelming response from everyone. We look forward to organise more such events in the future,” said Priti Sayeed, Business Head, BoConcept.

rttd’inox, India’s premier brand of stainless steel tableware accessories and modular kitchens, launched its second exclusive store in the City. The seamless integration of Arttd’inox modular kitchens and tableware, with a wide range of stainless steel utility and decorative items, makes it an ideal one-stop shop. Deepikaa Jindal, Managing Director, JSL Lifestyle Ltd said, “Design and quality is the cornerstone of Arttd’inox. We strive to offer our customers the best quality of stainless steel, crafted tastefully to delight our clients.”


06

19-25 October 2012

Our Mental Challenge

 Contd from p 1 The Law

As per the decision of the Supreme Court, all children between the ages of six and 14 are entitled to free and compulsory education. One in four seats in all private schools have to be provided free of cost to children from underprivileged homes in neighbouring areas. In Haryana, the Education Minister, Geeta Bhukkal has made it clear to all private schools that they are to follow the RTE guidelines. Despite that, the deadline for the admission of underprivileged students has already passed, and few private schools have implemented the provision. Many schools believe that the parents of regular students will have to pay a higher fee, to bear the cost of the education of underprivileged students. Some schools, indeed, are very upfront, and say that if parents have the right to choose the school, the school authorities too should be given the opportunity to select the students. Experts reveal that there is a possibility of an extension of this deadline. Mr. Suraj Kumar, a member of NCPCR, strongly feels about the issue, and says, “There’s speculation that the government may extend the deadline for another two years. It has already taken 3 years for the government to implement this law. Any further extension of dates will just kill this initiative.” 

An impractical solution

A point put across by most

C over S tory

of the private schools is that they can’t make their textbooks, and the school environment, inclusive for such a diversified Indian society. “The syllabus in private schools is designed to equip children to compete in the global environment. If the government wants to implement the law, it will force private schools to dilute the syllabus for the convenience of the underprivileged children. Students of the elite private schools also receive proper guidance from parents. The family background of a child is extremely important, to manage the tough syllabus,” says a teacher at a 'world school' in the City. According to schools, the implementation of the 25% quota will make it difficult for the underprivileged children, as they will have to go through rigorous sessions, to improve their communication skill and knowledge base. However, Prabhat Agarwal, from Aravali Scholars, feels that the implementation of the law is not impractical. “10 years ago, every ‘dhaba’ used to have a ‘mundu’ (child labourer). However, today, if we see a child working in a shop, it strikes our eye. Thus, it will take some time to propagate. We just have to ensure that children from both economically backward as well as economically strong backgrounds mix well. We can’t arrive at a conclusion

that if a child doesn’t speak English, or doesn’t dress up properly, he/she can’t sit in the same classroom,” he says. Prabhat is the co-founder and coach at Aravali Scholars, an organisation where students from the economically weaker background are offered free coaching and mentoring.

Giving more teeth

Experts feel that the law’s definition of 25 per cent 'quota' is not really based on economic backwardness, but on categories such as scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, and other backward castes. Also, there is a concern about the children of migrant labourers. “The law doesn’t have any provision for people who regularly migrate from one city to another in search of a job. The government has to develop a Kendriya Vidyalaya (KV)-like structure for these children,” says Dr. Kapoor, an alumnus of IIT, and a renowned educationist. Moreover, the law excludes boarding schools. Thus, the affluent section of society can always have an exclusive school, and the financial burden will be borne by the upper-middle class and middle class. The government should also revise the current fee (Rs.800-Rs.900 per child), that is reimbursed to the private schools, for the education of the less privileged.

Real Possibility

Before the advent of private schools, children from all the sections of society used to study in similar schools. Those schools are credited with producing many scientists, scholars, and doctors. But now only the government schools have children from the less privileged sections of society. Abhinav, from Rack the Brain, says, “If these schools can afford to have special educators for the physically challenged kids, why not have a special educator for children coming from the economically weaker sections of society. These children have the ability to compete with an average student studying in a private school. If you look at the state statistics, many children from government schools have better performance in sports.” Rack the Brain is an organisation that specialises in developing the thinking skills and overall intelligence levels in kids . Moreover, the presence of underprivileged children in schools may actually help the 'regular' children, as they will learn first hand about the different stratas of our society. It will broaden their view and perspective of Indian society. “Less privileged children will bring 'cultural riches' into the classroom, that will help their peers, who are usually

Experiences A luxury called toilets

Most children who attend the elite private schools are appreciative of the toilets. “We earlier woke them at pre-dawn, and they carried a vessel of water to a quiet spot. However, now as our kids study in afternoon classes conducted by the Shiksha Kendra at DPS, we have access to toilets,” says a mother of a 12-year-old. Never mind the chronic constipation that may plague them for life, these kids wait till the afternoon to go to the toilet. “Even when the school is closed, the mothers bring the children here in the afternoon. We allow them to use the toilets because these kids are our students. It is time the government realises that toilets are a sanitation issue and a health issue,” says one of the teachers at Shiksha Kendra.  

Making strides in academics

Azhar and Rasheed, two brothers who study at Shiksha Kendra, DPS, have found the teaching methodology of the School exceptional. Rasheed, who couldn’t identify alphabets at the age of 5, is now scoring over 75% marks in a class of 50 students. Azhar, on the other hand, is a budding cricketer. He regularly participates in cricket tournaments conducted by various private schools in the City. “Here, teachers are trained to deal with intellectually weaker children. Also, extra-curricular activities help children socialise, and develop team spirit among them, besides improving their health,” says Mamta, a project coordinator at an NGO in South City II.

Aiming for foreign varsities

Meet Babli, daughter of a rickshaw-puller, who attends afternoon classes at Blue Bells School, Sector 4. She scored the second highest marks in the CBSE board examination last year. She loves Biology, and wants to build her career in research at a foreign varsity. “I think my school provided me the right environment. After I scored the highest marks in the 10th standard, all my teachers got together to lay out my schedule, and prepared me mentally and academically to excel in the

Class 12th Board. Had I not attended Blue Bells, I would never have achieved success in my life,” says Babli. She has also written extensively in leading research journals, on subjects such as Animal Tissues and Apoptosis.

Excelling in Arts

Not only do the students get free education in air-conditioned classrooms equipped with computers and modern infrastructure, they have opportunities to participate in various cultural and art shows. In 2006, when Veena, a student of evening classes at Amity, participated in a school play, her teachers realised that she had a great potential in acting. With the assistance of trained mentors, and 6 years of rigorous practice, Veena is today a part of the National School of Drama, and has won several awards in acting. “I am thankful to Jaya Ma’am, Veena’s mentor. My daughter’s enrolment into Amity has changed our fortunes. I wish I had put my other kids into such a school,” says Shradha, mother of Veena. The flip side While the children find it comfortable to be a part of evening classes, their experiences in regular classrooms under the provision of the 25% quota for underprivileged children, have been terrible. Kamal, who attends a renowned school on Sohna Road, says that his classmates refuse to jump into the swimming pool if he takes a dive. Some of his peers call him “Kaalu”. Son of a roadside potter, Kamal is given Rs. 2 as pocket money, and he spends all of it on perfumed soaps. Recounting the most horrible stories, Kamal’s mother Raksha says that the previous week one of the kids in their neighbourhood was beaten up by the public, as he had snatched the bag of a lady. He wanted to watch a movie with his classmates in a multiplex. “We can’t afford to buy perfumes for our kids. We can’t send our kids to malls for shopping. As soon as this session comes to an end, I will pull my child out of this school, because I don’t want my child to be exposed to a luxury lifestyle,” says Sabiya.

trapped within the narrow confines of the 'upper class' society,” says Abhinav. Speaking on the psychological issues faced by underprivileged kids in the elite private schools, Chanchal Chawla, Principal of Govt. School, Sector 54 says, “We have to work on the mindset, not on the provisions of this Law. Private schools have to make the environment friendly for underprivileged children. A teacher’s role is, therefore, extremely important. If a teacher finds it difficult to deal with a student from a different background, he/she needs a reality check. We have to train teachers to deal with the social and physiological needs of these kids.”

A success story

Sikhya, the School of Learning in Chandigarh, provides education to underprivileged children as well as regular students, in the same classroom. This School is equipped with the state-of-the-art technology, and modern facilities such as a swimming pool, amphitheatre, and computer labs. A different curriculum is designed for the underprivileged kids. “The focus is on developing functional skills, English speaking, and inculcating moral values among the children,” says Sonia Channi, founder of the School. More than 650 underprivileged kids have access to free education in the air-conditioned classrooms. As Channi puts it, “The idea behind providing a 'luxurious' orientation to the poor children is to create a beauteous and spiritually uplifting environment for them – not to make them feel inferior.” Talking about the issue of discrimination in elite private schools, Channi says, “We stress on personal hygiene. The School has constructed about 50 bathrooms, where the children take turns to have a bath after coming to the School.” Funded by a trust, the School management is inspired by the challenge of educating the underprivileged. A socially mixed school, with children having different experiences and viewpoints, is expected to facilitate a more enriching learning experience – and foster better collective behaviour. u

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S ocial

19-25 October 2012

Decades Of Welfare { Maninder Dabas / FG }

J

ust a normal life is what every physically impaired person ever desires. Unfortunately society doesn't often embrace those who lag behind. Fortunately, the Haryana Welfare Society for Hearing and Speech Handicapped (HWSHSH) is an organisation that trains such children right from a tender age. HWSHSH was established in the year 1971, under the Societies Act 1860. The prime objective of this Society is to rehabilitate those with hearing and speech impairments, by schooling them in modern

ways of survival. It's one of the biggest organisations of its kind in the whole of North India, and it is operational in six districts of Haryana – Gurgaon, Sonipat, Karnal, Hissar, Sirsa and Panchkula. It is an NGO, and the state of Haryana funds this organisation with 50 per cent of the total spending. We give preference to the children of Haryana, but those from other places in North India are also here in large numbers,” says N.C Jain, the Assistant Director, HWSHSH, Gurgaon

{ Shilpy Arora / FG }

W

hen Angad Singh, 16, decided to participate in a competition, Youth Power, where everyone had to work on a social cause, little did he know that in just six months it would motivate him to form an NGO, Discover I. Currently a student of Grade X of Amity International School, Angad Singh, along with his school mates, Gautam Gupta, Sheffi Tiwari, and Vathul M. Balasubramanian visits slums and selects children, to train them in various fields such as dance, music, arts and craft. Based on the lines of the blockbuster movie, “Taare Zameen Par”,   Discover I believes that every child is special. “In India, parents and school teachers always emphasise the importance of education. However, there is a need to enquire the interest of the child also,” says Angad. Sheffi Tiwari seconds that and says, “At Discover I, we believe that the poor children also have certain hidden talents. It is just that the 'poor' children fail to enhance and showcase their talent due to other priorities

Nursery, LKG and UKG—we teach these kids the special ways; and later on they get the same education as any other 'normal' branch. The Gurgaon branch kid. We have an affiliation with has been in operation for the the Bhiwani Board, Haryana, last twenty years, and now it is and there is no difference housed in a fairly big building, whatsoever in the curriculum from Class One to the Tenth. built in 2004, from the grants of private players and the then DC, Their exams are also the Gurgaon. “At present we have same, including the Boards 250 students, and we have a for the Eighth and Tenth,” 100 bed hostel for them. As says Jain. N.C Jain believes far as money is concerned, we that hearing disability is the main reason behind a kid's incapability to speak – because if the kid doesn't hear, he or she can't think of what to say. So speaking is an impairment that follows the hearing one; and that is why the initial training of three years is extremely crucial for these kids. However, even a Matric Prakhar pandey level in today's world is not get half as grant from enough to earn one's bread and the State government, butter; and so an affiliation was and the rest we get forged. “Here we have an afas contribution from filiation with this adjoining the parents of the Industrial Training Institute kids, the shopkeepers (ITI), where our students in Sadar Bazar, and get admission in the welder various corporate and fiddler trades, so they houses. We have can learn the mode of earnan annual spend ing a livelihood. Both these of almost Rs. 1.20 trades are for boys only, becrores, and receive cause we don't keep girls afa Rs. 60 lakhs grant from the ter Matric level. As far as the government,” explains Jain. staff is concerned, we have “Our sole aim is to rehabilitate 36 people here, including 14 these kids, and bring them teachers. We not only provide into the mainstream society the kids with books and statio– because this society doesn't nery, but also a school dress to easily accept the weak. We those whose parents aren't well do our best to lessen the pain off,” adds Jain. The environinflicted on them. Although we ment at the school is similar to can't always set them free from any normal government school, this curse of impairment, we with kids making lots of noise hope that by educating them and teachers instructing them to remain silent. Teachers also we can make them capable of running in the race of life. We believe that teaching these heareducate them till the Matric ing impaired kids is indeed a level in the initial three stages— challenge. “Initially it is very dif-

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ficult to make them understand, but as soon as they start understanding the sign mechanism it becomes comparatively easy. These kids are very similar to the normal kids, and some of them are extremely talented. We try to teach them survival tricks before they enter the 'outer world', ” says Ashok Kumar, a teacher. Asked about

the support from the Administration, N.C Jain says, “We receive a 'half-grant' from the government, but as far as the Gurgaon Administration is concerned we don't get much except for occasional help from DC P.C Meena. He has at times requested corporates, who came to him for some work, to donate some money to our organisation.” u

interest”, feels a doctor who provides free medical aid to the poor children at Discover I. Apart from providing “Of six, Maumil won five competitions,” says Raja, the the best facilities, Discover proud mother of Maumil, I regularly sets up stalls in who was earlier reluctant to schools and nearby locations, send her child for the evening to sell the artwork made by classes. Like Maumil, there are underprivileged kids. This small group of four over 40 children selected by the founders and five volunteers group to attend regular classes.  Sport is another focus area. spreads the awareness about Discover I helps enroll poor kids the events by distributing Nirmal, an in the Sports Days of reputed brochures. jit kumar underprivileged child, sold her artworks in a mega Craft Mela last year. “Last Diwali I made diyas, cards, and shagun envelopes with recycled material. I sold more than a dozen, and earned Rs. 800,” says Nirmal, who is eagerly waiting for the upcoming Diwali Mela.

– such as lack of funds, lack of time, and lack of recognition from the society. Gautam, who seems upset that people don’t take his project seriously, says, “My parents and teachers are very supportive. But it seems society doesn’t recognise the efforts of young students. Media, for instance, has hardly given any coverage to our initiative”. Despite this, the Discover I team carries out the NGO work at different locations across the City. Due to the tremendous hard work and zeal of these young students, many local NGOs are coming forward to offer funds and volunteership. Angad informs that due to the support from his School and various local bodies, they have recently made a formal registration of Discover I – and it is now a recognised body.  When asked about how they manage studies as well as the social initiative, Sheffi smiles and says, “It takes a will to do something good. Nowadays, children spend hours on Facebook and playstations. We are utilising that time here, spreading smiles among the poor children. Believe me, it is not difficult at all.” u

Discover Yourself in their lives. Our society cannot grow until the talent in the underprivileged is noticed and recognised by the society.”

How it works

Discover I organises various camps and activities across the City, to make sure that the talent among the underprivileged is brought to light. “We go to various slums and schools for the underprivileged to conduct events such as summer camps, painting competitions, and exhibitions, to bring out the talent. After finding the talent, we get in touch with experts in the respective fields, who provide support to these kids,” says a teacher who is working as a volunteer with Discover I. The students conduct regular dance and singing classes at Amity International School in the evenings. Maumil, 11, who has been living on the street for the last nine years, is gifted with a melodious voice. At Discover I, he had a chance to participate in various interschool singing competitions.

07

The Team

schools in the City. It not only gives them an opportunity to showcase their skills, but also helps other children learn about their physical strength. “Most of the underprivileged children are good at sports. The problem is they don’t get nutritious food, and the time to practice and pursue their

While Sheffi teaches drawing and other creative arts to the children, Angad takes on the responsibility of managing logistics for the organisation. Gautam and Vathul manage the internet interface and public relations respectively.

Challenges

Being a young team, Discover I has to face many challenges


08 We Are Family { Anita Jaswal }

B

eing a full-time mother is one of the highest salaried jobs... since the payment is pure love. Ameeta Sandhu, an army daughter and an army wife, is a living example of this. Daughter of a Brigadier, she got married to Capt. Ardamanjit Singh in 1974. Her father-in-law was the Vice Chief, and the world was at her feet. She chose a career that is undoubtedly the most crucial – that of a home-maker. “The homemaker has the ultimate career. All other careers exist for one purpose only - and that is to support the ultimate career. ” This quote by C.S. Lewis has been her mantra. She is a charming beauty, with a subtle touch of sophistication and elegance. The mystique of her beauty probably has less to do with her DNA than with the kind of person she is. A gracious host, a supportive wife, a 24x7 hands-on mother, she possesses polish and sobriety, and conducts herself with restraint and poise. “When I married Abdo, it was a whirlwind life – parties, dinners, ladies’ meets, welfares, picnics, you name it. Being a fauji daughter, I had experienced all this since birth. But I had one thing clear in my mind – I wanted to be a really great home-maker. I had learnt from my mother that the primary human relationship is with your spouse, says

{ Atul Dev }

T

he term ‘Bhagidari’ refers to the process of participatory governance – which is the basic tenet of any democracy. What exactly is this Bhagidari system that has been recently introduced in the Union Territory of Delhi? The Government-Citizen partnership has a long history. Endeavours have varied: from community development projects in the fifties to the Panchayati Raj movements in the sixties, to the 73rd and 74th Amendments to the Constitution aimed at bringing democracy and good governance at the grass roots. The Union Government initiated the concept of ‘Bhagidari: CitizenGovernment Partnership’ in January 2000. The main objective has been to devise institutional forms of citizengovernment partnerships, and to increase the efficacy of existing systems with the active participation of citizens. Bhagidari literally means ‘collaborative partnership’. It envisages collaboration between citizens and the city administration for improvement of civic services, and facilitates citywide changes. It aims at utilising processes and principles of multi-stakeholder (RWAs, citizen groups, NGOs, the government agencies, the private sector…) collaboration, to increase the people’s participation and their ‘joint ownership of responsibility’. Initially, Bhagidari received a mixed response in the Union Territory of Delhi. The basic challenge lay in trying to bring in the necessary changes in the

Ameeta. As a home-maker, she was the nurturer, doctor, teacher, cook, house keeper, homework helper, cheerleader, disciplinarian – and above all, the perfect foil to her husband, as he scaled the military ladder to finally retire as a Major General. Yes, being a supportive spouse can be both a rewarding and a difficult role. “She has been my best friend, and all these years she has shared the vision I had for myself. She has been my sounding board unconditionally. She is my emotional strength, always there to refuel my emotional tank,” General Sandhu remarks fondly. But Ameeta also cherishes her own individuality. She values her independence and space. “The best thing that I can ever be is me. But the best gift that I will ever have is being a mother,” she says. And these values she has imparted to her sons, Aditya and Karan. She feels love and respect does not demand geographical proximity or occupational involvement, and does not have a hierarchal authority structure. Her married sons live separately, while retaining the basic ideals of group caring and sharing. The familial and kinship bonds are thus maintained and sustained. Ameeta reiterates that staying under one roof is not the only proof of a happy family. To quote George Burns: Happiness is having a large, loving, caring,

C ivic/Social

jit kumar

19-25 October 2012

close-knit family – a few miles away! Both her sons, well-placed in the corporate ladder—one as a Senior VP with Indigo Airlines, and the other is Head of ITC, Sales & Marketing, North America—left their jobs to begin Headstart, a training company. They provide across the board services for airlines, hotels, hospitals – and even the army. She missed having a daughter. God has blessed her with two wonderful daughters-in-law – Priajit and Shreya; and above all, her adorable granddaughter Meher. “For many couples, the in-laws simply won’t let go of their children and let them grow up. They constantly give unwanted advice on parenting, finances—even the running of the household! But not my

Mom-in-law. She respects our privacy, and it is her sensitivity that has ensured the healthy family dynamics,” says Priajit, the elder daughter in law. Ameeta feels it can be a difficult transition, though satisfying, to watch a son grow up, move out, and start a family of his own. It’s all in the mind. The love of a family is life’s greatest blessing, she feels. She is thankful to God for giving her a wonderful family. Ameeta also constantly cares for her old father, and baby-sits for her two grand children – Meher, and one year old Adhiraj. As Theodore Roosevelt, said, “When all is said, it is the mother— and the mother only—who is a better citizen than the soldier who fights for his country.” u

Bhagidari – Citizen Governance already laid down government policies and systems. Also, bringing together a large number of citizen groups and government officials on a common platform was difficult. There was strong resistance from field level government officers, who were not willing to step out of their bureaucratic shell and accept direct interaction with citizens’ groups. They felt it was an erosion of their authority; and in many instances it also stemmed from corruption issues at the field level. There was need for a model that would ensure a collaborative process between government officials and citizens. Today, practically all departments of the Delhi Government have become participating units in the Bhagidari programme. The concept of Bhagidari is distinct from the traditional models of local self-governance or rural self-government concepts popularly called Panchayati Raj. Bhagidari encourages people not to be totally dependent on the govt, and instead try to be a part of the governance. There is need to understand the constraints and problems of the Govt and Citizens, and then arrive at a consensus and action plan that can be implemented. Thus the focus has shifted from passing on responsibility to a sharing of responsibilities. An important component of the Bhagidari system has been the role played by the Residents Welfare Associations (RWAs). The RWAs have become an integral part of this Programme. Broadly speaking, the Bhagidari initiative takes up

everyday issues that impact the life of a citizen. These are normally very elementary activities with simple solutions - such as collective payment of water and electricity bills, or rainwater harvesting schemes. For the Market Traders Associations (MTAs), the issues range from removal of slums or Jhuggi clusters, to removal of encroachments on roads and parks. An example is the involvement of RWAs with the Delhi Jal Board. The RWAs have been made responsible for distribution and payment of water bills, distribution of water through tankers, repair and maintenance of local pipelines, water harvesting, internal colony sewage systems, desilting of sewers, etc. Similarly, for the Bijli Board, issues like common meter readings and billing collection/ delivery problems, handling load shedding/breakdown services, maintenance of street lighting, meter name change and load enhancement requests, conservation of energy and maintenance of data on power supply/ breakdown/restoration, are now being handled by the RWAs themselves. Matters normally dealt with by the Municipal Corporations, such as house tax collection, maintenance of community parks, management of community halls, sanitation services, prevention of littering, removal of stray and dead animals, and maintenance of roads and back lanes on a regular basis, are now being handled by the RWAs. They also enjoy some ‘punitive powers’,

like collection of fines. While the Delhi Police is primarily responsible for crime prevention, it has now started involving the RWAs in neighbourhood watch schemes, verification of antecedents of domestic help, prevention of encroachments, regulation of traffic through colonies, and prevention of illegal sale of liquor. They are likely to follow the Election Commission, and have the RWAs verify passport forms as has been done for Voter ID cards. Basically the whole Bhagidari scheme involves a mutual discussion of problems, arriving at consensus solutions, implementation of the discussed solutions, and then monitoring of the implement-

ed actions. For the Bhagidari system to succeed further, the intent should be to gradually work out changes in policies and legislation, which would enable citizens’ groups to statutorily interact with the Government. There should be stress on scaling up and further strengthening, or ‘institutionalisation’, of partnerships – esp. with RWAs and MTAs. Bhagidari should be introduced in Gurgaon. Gurgaon is still an evolving and growing city. The task here would be easier, as the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon has not yet really got into the act. Division of responsibilities can be effectively carried out at this nascent stage, with long-term benefits for all the participants. Also, with Bhagidari, no one will be able to blame ‘others’! u (Atul Dev is a Gurgaon-based senior freelance journalist)

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19-25 October 2012

C ivic/Social

Women-in-Laws { Maninder Dabas / FG }

The Purpose

T

hey say time heals every wound. But there are some wounds that leave deep scars – not only on the mortal self of the victim, but on her soul too. Rape is a crime that ravages the victim for life. It not only shatters the self-confidence of the victim, but also murders her inner being. In most of the rape cases, women don’t even lodge a police complaint; and those who do, encounter humiliating questioning inside the male-dominated police stations. In Haryana, a State that feeds on patriarchy, the experience can be even worse. However, silver linings are on the horizon. Very soon there would be female lawyers ‘connected’ to each Police Station, to assist the victim in the filing of an FIR – and to also provide emotional support. The District Legal Services Authority (DLSA) has constituted a team of women advocates, who will present themselves at Police Stations, when victims of sexual assault wish to record their statements. The DLSA has directed the authorities to implement the scheme, which makes it mandatory for the Station House Officer (SHO), or the concerned police officer, to call up the deputed lawyer every time a woman has to file her statement. DLSA has roped in around 35 women lawyers practising in Gurgaon District Courts. These advocates have been assigned separate Police Stations, and will be available 24x7. “DLSA has taken this initiative on the directions of the Haryana Legal Service Authority (HLSA), in order to provide a comfortable environment for women to file an FIR; and to be legally represented at the time of the filing of a complaint. This step is being taken to lessen their discomfort in front of male policemen, and I believe this will help these poor victims a great deal,” said Narender Kaur, Chief Judicial Magistrate, and Secretary, DLSA, Gurgaon.

The Background

This scheme has been launched in line with a 1995 SC order, requiring legal representation for complainants of sexual assault. The order was passed by the then Chief Justice M.N Venkatachaliah, on a petition filed by the Delhi Domestic Working Women’s Forum (DDWWF). According to the SC order, victims of sexual assault shall be given legal assistance at police stations, as they might be in a distressed state.

{ Shilpy Arora / FG }

J

ust outside Cyber Greens the doors of an AC bus open while the vehicle takes a slow turn. Unlike the regular buses, the conductor doesn’t call out the names of destinations. He just inspects the membership cards of the boarding passengers. Soon, each of them are sitting comfortably. The initiative of a private company, Smart Ride Service, (a bus service), is becoming popular in the City, embarrassing the City’s 46-year old transport department. “The idea was primarily to de-congest the roads, by providing an alternative to office cabs. It was also aimed at reducing pollution in the City, as these buses are CNG-run, ” says Hari Kaushik, Managing Director & CEO of Smart Ride Service. The initiative is supported by DLF and the Millennium City Welfare Society. Started in July 2011, the Smart Ride bus service has also come as a boon to thousands of professionals who regularly travel from Delhi to Cyber City. It has even made some people re-consider a job offer. “A senior manager of an MNC located at Hero Honda Chowk mentioned this to me. He said that during an interview he was asked by a candidate whether the Smart Ride service was available at Hero Honda Chowk. I am glad that, in just over a year, the bus service has become so popular.” Owing to the popularity and increasing demand, Smart

09

The list of female Lawyers, with their designated Police Stations Office Of Distt. Legal Services Authority (DLSA), Gurgaon

“The total number of rape or assault cases that get registered in our police stations are not even half of the actual cases. Women, due to society’s pressures, and of their own fears, don’t complain to the police. And those who do, also face many difficulties – as the process of filing of a rape or sexual assault FIR is filled with quite obnoxious (though obligatory) questions. Hence the victims always feel alone and deserted. The purpose of this initiative is to mitigate their fear and sense of loneliness, as the presence of a woman lawyer would comfort them. We receive several cases where the victims contact the police, but the police don’t lodge a ‘proper’ FIR, which results in a weak case – and helps the accused in getting away easily in court. The woman lawyer would pacify her agony, and also motivate her to explain everything, so that a strong case can be built against the accused. I believe this initiative would surely bring the desired results, and there would be more culprits behind bars for a heinous crime like rape,” explained Kaur.

Sr. No.

Name of the Advocate (Ms.)

Name of Police Station/ PP

1

NUTAN YADAV

Sadar

2

NEETU

Palam Vihar

3

BALJEET KAUR

P Vihar C-2,PP

4

SHASHWATI GHOSH

DLF Phase-I

5

CHARU GUPTA

Civil Lines

6

KRISHNA SHUKLA

Sec 14, PP

7

SHASHI BALA

City, Khandsa Road, PP & New Colony, PP

8

ARCHANA CHAUHAN

Arjun Nagar, PP

9

USHA SHARMA

Bus Stand PP

10

PAVITRA YADAV

Pataudi Road PP

11

REKHA MAURYA

DLF(Sec-29)

12

SARASWATI PHOGAT

DLF Phase-II

13

PRITI SINGH

DLF Phase-III, PP

14

RAJ BALA SHARMA

Udyog Vihar

15

NEETU SETHI

Manesar

16

VANDANA AGGARWAL

Sushant Lok

17

OM WATI NAGAR

Sohna

18

AMINA BANO

City Sohna

How it would be implemented?

19

ASHA SINGH

Metro Station

20

ALRINA SENAPATI

Sec 5

21

RAMA

Sec 4, PP

22

SHIPRA KHAJANCHI

GRP / RPF

23

JYOTI YADAV

Sec-40

24

POONAM SAINI

Khedki Daula

25

SNIGHDHA

Sec 56

26

RESHMA JOHARI

Badshahpur

27

EKTA YADAV

Farukhnagar

28

BIMLESH YADAV

Pataudi

29

JYOTI BHADHORIA

Bhondsi

30

POOJA RAJPUT

Rajindra Park

31

SUNITA BHARGAVA

Bilaspur

32

AARTI YADAV

Sec 18

33

POONAM SAINI

Sec 10

34

SHASHI BALA

Irrigation & Power Deptt. Sushant Lok -I

35

SHASHI BALA

SVB

DLSA has already set plans in motion for the implementation of this initiative. District Gurgaon has a total of 35 Police Stations, including 27 in the City. “We have already sent the list of 35 female lawyers to the Police department, Gurgaon, and now it’s their obligation to implement it as soon as possible. In the list, DLSA has also designated the respective Police Stations to all 35 lawyers,” said Poonam Singh, Assistant Public Relation Officer (APRO), DLSA, Gurgaon. The Police department, however, hasn’t directed the various Police Stations about the arrival of female lawyers yet; as of now there is no designated female lawyer for any of the Police Stations across the District. “We haven’t received any directives from the head office yet. I believe we would get intimated very soon,” said a police official in one of police stations. As far as the facilities to lawyers are concerned, the DLSA has decided to give these female lawyers Rs. 500 per case for attending the investigations, remand and committal proceedings. They will also be entitled to travelling expenses – Rs.  100 up to 20 km,  Rs.  150 up to 40 km,  Rs.  200 up to 60 km and Rs. 250 up to 80 km. u

Smart Rides

Ride expanded its operations in January. It now operates from DLF Phase V to Cyber City, and Sikenderpur Metro Station to Cyber City. From just two buses, Smart Ride has now rolled out 12 buses on the roads, ferrying over 3000 commuters of over 40 big companies.

Cost efficient and safe

Availability and Frequency

Smart Ride buses are available from 7:30 am to 1:30 pm and 4:30 pm to 9:30 pm, with a frequency of 6 minutes during peak hours  - 8:00 am to 11:30 am and 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm. Frequency of 12-15 minutes is maintained during non-peak hours.

How to register?

One can enrol for Smart Ride membership instantly, after signing up at the kiosk in front of Exit Gate no. 2 at Sikanderpur Metro Station, from 8:00 am to 13:00 hrs; and at Cyber Green Building, from 4:30 pm to 8:30 pm.

Membership Plans

The Membership plans are for a monthly pass, a flexible plan, and a single ride.

Before Smart Ride, residents were mainly dependent on private autos, that charged an exorbitant amount. The minimum rate for the passengers of Smart Ride is Rs. 12.50 per ride, which is very affordable. “For a person who earns Rs. 25 k a month, it was hard to shell out Rs. 5 k on transport,” says Kundan. Shikha, who works for Traffic Niyam NGO informs that there has been no incident of rash driving or violation of traffic rules with Smart Ride. “I personally interview all the drivers and staff. I make sure they go through a rigorous training. We not only give them driving lessons, but also teach them about the ways to save fuel, and how to take care of the safety of pedestrians,” says Hari Kaushik. “60 to 70 per cent of the passengers are females, and they feel safe with Smart Ride.”   Besides a safe and cost effective journey, Smart Ride offers an airconditioned ride, with the inside being a replica of the Metro coach. It has a seating capacity for 26 people, and space for 10 people to stand.

Bottlenecks

The lack of support from the authorities seems to be the larger concern for the Smart Ride Service. According to Hari Kaushik, the company is hardly making any profits, as 30 per cent of the fare goes as direct taxes to the government. This is why we can’t hire more people, and thus can’t manage more buses. Talking about some ineffective projects, Hari says, “In February, we started a bus service from Sispal Vihar, Sohna Road to the Metro station. However, it didn’t get a good response.   So we had to shut down the service. The reason is, of course, lack of awareness among the people, and a less number of buses.” Also, there are no bus stops in the City. “We have put a signage that reflects the timing and frequency of the buses. It is, however, not a solution. The City has to have a good infrastructure for public transport to operate,” says one of the staff members at Smart Ride Service.

Future Plans

Smart Ride is planning to extend the services to Udyog Vihar, Sohna Road, Manesar, and Dwarka in the near future. The company invites RWAs and condominiums for a tie-up. Smart Ride Service sets up a kiosk in the society, where people can enrol for the membership plans. Smart Ride also plans to roll out similar models in cities like Noida and Bangalore. u


10

19-25 October 2012

K id C orner

Excelsior World Wonders

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he students of Excelsior American School made various presentations on “Wonders of World” in the School premises. Teachers, along with the parents and grandparents of kids, attended the presentation. The students made several wonderful monuments – such as Big Ben, Chichen Itza,  and the Taj Mahal.

The Lancers’ World

C

elebrating the diversity of world cultures, languages, and geography, Lancers International School celebrated the World Culture Day. While teachers shared information on the basic facts about the world, the students presented a scintillating dance and music Show.

T

Kinder Green Plumes

iny tots at Kinder Plume planted a few saplings in the School campus, and promised to nurture them in the near future. Present at the occasion was Aruna Mathur, President of Haryali Badao, who informed that of 100 saplings planted in the City, only 10 are properly nurtured by people. She urged students not to just plant saplings, but also shoulder the responsibility of nurturing them. Teachers taught the different ways to nurture a sapling.

Musical Centre

M

aa Sharda Music Center, New Colony, successfully organised an entertaining musical and cultural programme at Bal Bhawan, Sector-4. Shri Yashpal Batra, Senior Deputy Mayor, was the Chief Guest. The children of the Institute performed in their respective streams―Kathak, western dance, vocals, keyboards, guitar and harmonium―amidst continuous cheer from the guests and parents. Neeti Khare, the Director of the Institute, thanked the guests for their presence and co-operation. The Institute is affiliated to Prayag Sangeet Samiti, Allahabad.

Lotus Ramayana

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eeping India’s rich heritage in mind, budding learners of the Pre-Primary Wing of Lotus Valley International School presented Ramayana – a divine roadmap to peace in the world. The Chief Guest was Lushin Dubey, a popular theatre personality, while the Special Guest of Honour was Jaspreet Kaur, Member Managing Committee, Lotus Valley. The inhouse drama and dance featured a cast of more than 350 children, enacting a story of love, adventure, separation – and an eventful joyous reunion. The Show was filled with soulful narration, impeccable dances, and spectacular costumes, wherein the children depicted the various stages of Lord Rama’s life. Lushin Dubey addressed the audience and said that all children should get theatre exposure at an early age, to help them gain confidence and overcome stage fright. Compiled by Shilpy Arora, email: shilpy.arora@fridaygurgaon.com


19-25 October 2012

Kid Corner

11

FG Painting Competition

Robots Communicane

M

anav Rachna International School, Sec. 46, achieved another feat at the 7th Edition of Indian Robot Olympiad (IRO) 2012. Its team, Extreme Robos, secured the first position in the Senior Open Category at the Olympiad, and bagged a cash prize of Rs. 1 lakh. The team, comprising three students—Sreekar Voletti, Anees Shaikh, and Prikshit Rao—came up with the winning ‘Communicane’, an ultra sonic sensor that integrates with a smart phone, allowing a blind person to navigate. The Communicane works on the principle that simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. MRIS Sec. 14, Faridabad hosted the IRO, which saw the participation of 46 teams from across the country.

Joy Of Giving

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our schools–The Banyan Tree World School, Shiv Nadar School, The Suncity World School and The Lotus Valley International School— participated in the Joy of Giving Week. The Event was organised by ELNA (Experiential Learning via Nature-based Activity), for the Ashish Foundation for the Differently Abled. The idea behind this drive was to make school children ‘experience’ the joy in giving, selflessly – even if that meant giving away their old clothes or favourite toys and books to someone unknown.

F

riday Gurgaon thanks the principals, teachers and students of all the schools that participated in the Inter School Painting Competition – Alankaran, held at Manav Rachna International School, Sector 46, on Saturday the 13th.

GEMS Grandparents Health Camp

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n the occasion of Grandparent’s Day, the students of GEMS International School, organised a Health Camp for their grandparents. A team of specialists from Medanta Hospital performed free check-ups and gave tips on healthy living to the elderly.

We were literally overwhelmed. As against a confirmation of about 300 students (and therefore a practical expectation of about 250 by us), there was a swarm of 665 students – plus of course teachers and parents. We sincerely regret the inconvenience faced by the attendees, as it was really difficult to control the event logistically in a short time. However, we are happy that all the students were accommodated, and were able to complete their paintings within the allotted time. Thank you to the Principal and teachers of Manav Rachna, for being responsible and warm hosts, and supporting the Friday Gurgaon team in this endeavour. To all the schools: Thank you all for an excellent response to our first ever student/school initiative. We promise some great experiences in the times to come. Paintings will be displayed at the Epicentre, on October 28th. (Sunday), from 11am to 8pm. The winners will be given Awards at a Ceremony starting at 1pm. All students will get a Participation Certificate.

Literary Flourish

Inter-galactic Recycling Some days back, on the 8th October 2012, the Inter galactic earth ranger was looking at earth from his “super telescope” in his spy home. He saw some people in Africa paying a lot of money to get water. He felt so sad looking at that. He moved his telescope and tried to find out what was causing this water problem. Then he spotted the North Pacific Gyre that was blocking the Pacific Ocean. He thought this was an emergency and rushed to solve the problem. When he reached his hide-out on Earth, he took out his “sucker machine” and pressed the suck button and typed ‘ suck North Pacific Garbage Patch’. Then he took out his ‘voice recognition gun’ and commanded ‘please turn half of the plastic in the North Pacific Garbage Patch into paper and half of it into leaves.’ The gun zapped its powerful ray and turned half of the junk into paper and half of it into leaves. After that he took his scooper machine and scooped the patch of leaves and dumped it into soil with his machine so that the plants can have more manure to grow. As for the paper, he pressed a button on his voice recognition gun and converted all the bits of paper into normal writing paper. He arranged all the paper into bundles with the recycle sign on it and sent it to the shops to be sold as recycled paper.

Artistic Strokes

Tanya Jain, Grade V C, Delhi Public School, Sec 45

Krish, Grade V B, Delhi Public School, Sec 45

Arjan Singh, Grade I, Excelsior American School


12

19-25 October 2012

K id Corner

Kids Brainticklers

Ozzimals: Color this picture

Animal Crackers

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?

Two Wise Men

Dogs of C-Kennel


19-25 October 2012

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

T

wo-time MLA Rajinder Singh Joon, dressed in a trademark kurta pyjama, and sporting a thick handle-bar moustache, has the look of a politician from Haryana. However, unlike an average Neta who is only concerned about his caste, clan and family, Joon seems committed to the overall development of his constituency. The importance he is giving to the creation of civic and industrial infrastructure, and his faith in the future of Bahadurgarh, holds hope that this upcoming city on the outskirts of the national capital will grow into a lively metropolis. “Bahadurgarh was virtually a fiefdom of certain politicians and their henchmen. There was no law and order prevailing in the City, and markets used to close at 6 pm. It was difficult to motivate workers, as they were low on confidence,” says Joon. To boost the morale of the Congress workers and supporters, he fought for enfranchising voters that had traditionally voted for Congress but had been denied the right to vote. “Twenty eight thousand ration cards, forms and affidavits were photocopied by my workers, as the Administration did not want to help me. I had to plead my case with senior officials in Chandigarh, who ultimately intervened, and about 13,000 voters were registered when elections were called,” says Joon. “I won the 2005 election by 5,100 votes, and Congress came to power in Haryana. The first thing I did was to ensure that the rule of law prevailed in my constituency. Things like ‘hafta wasooli’, and crime, were targeted,” he asserts. He believes that development and growth can take place in a peaceful society only. Joon also reiterates that the politics of Haryana has changed with the arrival of Bhupender Singh Hooda. “Being from Rohtak, Hooda has helped in bringing development to those parts of Haryana which were neglected by the earlier chief ministers,” he asserts. “This government has brought about balanced development. Both rural and urban areas have been treated fairly,” he says. The constituency has a mix of different communities – including Jats, Brahmins, Banias, Muslims and Punjabi Hindus. “It was my commitment towards

Joon Bahadur

Special 13 PRAKHAR PANDEY

development, and the maintenance of law and order, which motivated the people to vote for the Congress,” he says. He won by 20,000 votes in 2009. Joon says that his priority was to revive the City’s dying civic infrastructure, and particularly the living conditions in the Line Par colony. “I proposed and got sanctioned a Rs. 44 crores project, that ensured paved streets and a sewerage system in the Line Par area. Thousands of people were benefited by this move, and more residents turned to the Congress,” he asserts. Another major move was the setting up of a bypass around the City, that would rid it of traffic congestion. “I proposed that an 18-km bypass be set up, and this was approved. A major portion of this road has been constructed; a minor part is held up due to litigation, but will be constructed soon,” says Joon. Bahadurgarh constituency has 31 villages, and each of these now have concretised streets. “Chaupals in the City and villages have been made pukka. We believe in taking along all the ‘biradris’, and there has been no discrimination against any one on the basis of caste, community or political affiliation,” he says. Another major step was to increase the width of a culvert at the entry of the City, that had become notorious as ‘Khooni Pulia’. “Accidents were taking place regularly on this stretch, and it was after my intervention that it was rebuilt. The place has become safe now,” he says with confidence. However, the most important event, that will prove a game changer for Bahadurgarh, is the recent approval for the Metro rail project. “It was clear to the Haryana government that the development of Bahadurgarh could take place once the Metro reached here. I took up the matter repeatedly with the CM, who then gave his consent,” he says. However, it was only after a number of highlevel meetings, that a decision to extend the line was taken. “This decision will greatly benefit the City and surrounding areas, and help its transformation from a suburb of Delhi into another Millennial destination in the NCR,” he asserts.

With the Metro coming in can the malls and commercial buildings be far behind? Bahadurgarh is witnessing the construction of a number of modern malls, and the MLA says that they have proposed setting up a mall with a modern multiplex, as more outsiders are coming here to work and stay. Joon also appreciates the role played by the NCR Planning Board in the development of Bahadurgarh. He reveals that a number of major projects in his constituency have been financed by the NCR Board, which has worked positively for the development of the constituency. “The Master Plan of Bahadurgarh was approved by the Board, and this has been of great help. Gurgaon should also take advantage of this nodal Board,” he asserts. To improve commuting, the city roads have been widened, and the quality of workmanship greatly improved, he claims. A project of Rs. 32 crores has been sanctioned for the four-laning of the road from Tikri to Jakhouda Bypass. He has also proposed that a new mini-secretariat complex, along with a judicial building, be set up, as the population has increased manifold and the demands on the Administration have multiplied. A Sewage Treatment Plant and a network of drains are under construction, at a cost of Rs. 70 crores. Another major project under consideration is to cover the West Jua drain, that will also enable the building of a major concrete road across the City. A water filtration plant is being set up at a cost of Rs. 9 crores. A solid Waste Treatment Plant has also been proposed. A Community Centre has been proposed in Sector 6, whereas an international convention centre in Gorrayia Tourist Complex is also under consideration. Other projects proposed are an international stadium, and a 5-star hotel. The education system has got a boost with an 8 acres wing being added to the existing Boys’ college, that was set up during the tenure of his father – who

was also an MLA of Bahadurgarh. PDM College, that was a private educational institution, has been accorded a private university status. “We have approached the state government to set up an engineering college for the youth. The ITI has already been upgraded and expanded. We want the best institutions to come up in the area,” he says. Bahadurgarh has had a strong industrial base in Haryana, but the majority of the entrepreneurs had lost faith in the area due to poor infrastructure, and law and order issues. “I motivated the industry and promised them that conditions will improve with the arrival of the Congress government. The Parle factory, that had been shut due to disputes, was re-opened after 9 months,” informs Joon. Now almost 600 units are functioning in the industrial area set up by HSIIDC. A Footwear Park has also been set up by the HSIIDC in the Bahadurgarh industrial area, and this has brought in a large number of shoe manufacturing units. Major ceramic factories, have also set base here, asserts Joon. An ESI Hospital has come up. Bahadurgarh Civil Hospital also has a new Trauma Centre, and has been upgraded. Moving from development to politics, Joon expresses confidence that the leadership of Hooda will see the party through, and the Congress will form the next government again. When asked if he wanted to become a minister, Joon smiles, “I am satisfied with my work in the constituency. The development of Bahadurgarh was the dream of my father, and it is a commitment that will be fulfilled,” he asserts. u

the parliamentary constituency of Deepinder Hooda, the son and political heir of the present Chief Minister. Locals say that Hooda has been quite active in the area, and has visited every village of the constituency. “The local MP has been liberal with development funds, and so has been the government,” says Rakesh Panwar, a local journalist, who says that development has come here only in the last decade. Ravi Khatri, Chairman of the Nigam Parishad, says that a lot of development has taken place in the City, particularly to boost the civic infrastructure. The Parishad, he says, has an annual budget of Rs. 22 crores. Tejvir Dalal, Block Chairman, says that the present government has ensured that water and power is made available to the farmers, as it is crucial for agricultural operations. “Seeds and fertilizers

on subsidy are also being distributed in a fair manner. The village streets have been made pukka, and chaupals also have seen transformation,” he adds. Gajraj, a hotelier who has built an 80 room hotel, speaking at the inaugural function, told Friday Gurgaon that he has immense faith in the future of Bahadurgarh. The industry is coming up in a big way and demand is rising,” he says. Dharamvir Singh Joon, a former inspector with Delhi Police says, “During the INLD rule the recruitments took place from one particular area. There was massive corruption, and poor law and order – but now things have improved,” says Joon, whose son appeared nineteen times in the selection process, to join the Haryana police as a constable. He is now a doctorate, he rues. Bahadurgarh has a population of around 2 lakhs, and the literacy rate is 88

per cent. Colonel Rathee says that being very close to Delhi has been one of the reasons that this area has high literacy rates—for both men and women—and the crime against the fair sex is also less, compared to other parts of the State. But locals also allege that unemployment is rampant, as the Haryana government has not initiated a major recruitment drive. “If the youth are given jobs, and more industry brought in, there is no reason why this City cannot match other cities in future,” says Dharamvir Joon. Residents of the City meanwhile reiterate that the best thing that has happened to Bahadurgarh has been the return of peace, and an end to criminal activities that had made life impossible prior to 2005. “We want to live and let live,” says Surinder, a resident of the City. u

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ot many will know that apart from being the gateway of Haryana, and an industrial hub, Bahadurgarh is one of the biggest manpower suppliers to the Delhi government, as well as the many institutions of the central government. The people of Bahadurgarh are also serving in large numbers in the defence forces. Recounting the past, Colonel Krishan Rathee says that he had to go to the Tikri border to buy milk packets, as these were not available locally till the year 2000. Commuting was very difficult. “Bahadurgarh was a small speck in Haryana State; and the politicians, many of whom belonged to other regions, felt it had no future,” says Rathee. Founded by Mughal Emperor Alamgir II, this City has now become a viable option for industry, and for those looking for a residential option at a reasonable price. The Metro route, that is expected to change the future of Bahadurgarh, will be 11.182 kms, and the cost of the project is expected to be Rs. 1991 crores. There will be seven stations on the route – Mundka Industrial Area, Ghevra, Tikri Kalan, Tikri Border, Modern Industrial Estate, Bahadurgarh Bus Stand, and City Park. The construction work on the line will start this year, and would be completed by March 2016. Luckily, Bahadurgarh also falls in


14 { Shilpy Arora / FG }

K

avya, 6, can read like a 15-year old. She can also comprehend the words in a newspaper. Her parents keep her away from it, as they feel it doesn’t have the appropriate content for her age. People around Kavya are ‘tired’ of her incessant questioning. She doesn’t have many friends, because “children of her age say that she always tries to be oversmart,” says Kavya’s mother, Madhuri. Undoubtedly, her advanced vocabulary has made her unpopular. While other children in her class (KG) are coming to terms with the alphabet, she can read complete sentences. Thus she refuses to learn mere alphabets, and her teacher has concluded that Kamini is a slow learner and an undisciplined child. However, when Kamini’s IQ level is tested, it is found more than average. Kamini is now considered a “gifted” child. Like Kamini, there are 20 million ‘gifted’ children in our country. According to a research the City should alone have almost 5,000 ‘gifted’ children. While these figures are startling, many people are Dr. Inderbir Sandhu not even aware of the term. There is also widespread misunderstanding that ‘gifted’ children are always high achievers. A City-based expert, Dr. Inderbir Sandhu says, “Gifted children have quite different needs. The social and emotional development of a ‘gifted’ child is not at the same level as his/her intellectual development. That is why they need different treatment and care. If their abilities are not utilised properly, they can end up performing like an average child – or probably below average.” Most of the schools in the City have designed a special curriculum for the intellectually challenged. They, indeed, have special instructors for them. But, unlike the US and UK, in India students at the other end of the spectrum – a small percentage of ‘gifted’ minds – are often neglected. “Just like an autistic child or a dyslexic child, a ‘gifted’ child needs help. When a range of educational interventions is available for the ‘special’ child, why not for a ‘gifted’ child – who also comes in the same category,” says Dr. Sandhu, who holds a PhD in Psychology (Gifted  Education) from the University of Cambridge, UK. Usha Pandit, a Mumbai-based gifted education expert, also feels the same. “The main reason for identifying ‘gifted’ children is to enable them to obtain a better, more suitable education.  It is important to realise that they are special kids who are highly intelligent,” says Usha.  

How to identify a gifted child

Unfortunately, there is no one method to identify a ‘gifted’ child. The ‘gifted’ children are often misdiagnosed (with disorders like ADHD). It is important to spread awareness about ‘gifted’ education, so that parents can detect giftedness at an early age. Giftedness can be detected in infants too. As Dr. Sandhu informs, “If your child is extremely alert, needs less sleep than other babies, begin to mimic sound very early, and tends to be exceptionally sensitive to sounds, smells, textures, and tastes, he/she could be a ‘gifted’ child.” Navita Shastri, a resident of DLF Phase IV says, “My daughter started colouring at the age of 1. She woud get frustrated even if she only slightly drew

19-25 October 2012

Y oung A dult

The Gifted

outside the given lines. Also, she was very sensitive to loud noises – such as buzzing or toilet flushing. Even the seams on her socks used to make her angry. My uncle, who came from the US, where ‘gifted’ education is quite a popular concept, informed us that this type of frustration and ‘over- excelling’ is part of the perfectionist characteristic of a ‘gifted’ child. Later, tests also revealed the same. I am glad that simple acts of frustration revealed her giftedness at the right age.” ‘Experts also say that some signs can be an endless questioning or a sustained interest in learning – where the child puts in long hours on his/her own, on general subjects. They can also show unusual imagination, an appetite for knowledge through

An exclusive school for gifted children Srinivasan, founder of Gifted Education and Research Foundation (GEAR), Bangalore suggests we have an exclusive school for ‘gifted’ education in the City. He is also the founder of Rotary Public School here. At Rotary, they try and motivate children to realize their gifts and talents, and also are developing teaching-talents to recognise and nurture giftedness. class.” says Dr. Gupta, who plans to set up an NGO for ‘gifted’ children in the City soon. ‘Gifted’ children don’t get their dues in our country. Research  has also shown that the long term effects of ‘unrecognised giftedness’ are mostly negative – such as feelings of frustration, low self-esteem, isolation, diffidence, disconnection with education and learning, negative social behaviour, and unfulfilled potential.    

Way out

any source. “Most of the ‘gifted’ children read a lot. Unlike other children, a ‘gifted’ child would neatly turn the pages of a book, even at the age of 1,” says Dr. Sandhu. Using tests: Although there are a number of IQ tests to detect giftedness among children, you can’t rely upon a single test. According to experts, full scale IQ scores between 90 and 109 are considered average, 110 to 119 is higher than average, 120 to 129 is superior, and 130+ is considered extremely superior. Individuals with high IQs are more likely to show an uneven ability profile – high in one or two abilities, average or below average in the others.  Usha, however, doesn’t advise parents to rely completely on IQ tests. “There have been cases where a child’s exceptional ability in one domain could not be explained by an IQ test alone. It is therefore important for parents to get in touch with an expert in gifted education,” says Usha. Dr. Sandhu suggests that all parents know about the concept of giftedness, so that they can identify it in children. “In India, people generally associate high grades with giftedness. Students are recognised for neat work and rote learning, rather than for divergent or critical thinking. Thus people ignore children who underperform or misbehave. However, they could also be gifted children,” says Dr. Sandhu.  

Challenges

Raising a ‘gifted’ child is a challenge. Dr. Gupta, who runs an NGO for ‘gifted’ children in Faridabad, “Genius Minds”, gives an example of a 5-year-old gifted child who went into depression after watching a video of the tsunami affected areas in Japan. “He stopped talking to his family members. Due to his high intelligence level, he could feel the plight of the victims. His parents left him at an NGO that deals with mentally retarded children. When this child was brought to us, we conducted IQ tests, and after a month-long observation we realised that he was a ‘gifted’ child. Today, the child is just 11 years old and studies in Class X. He is one of the best performers in his

Most of the schools in the City are not equipped to deal with gifted children. “As the numbers in the classroom, and curriculum pressures, often make it difficult to pay attention to the ‘gifted’ child, afterschool enrichment programmes must be organised to meet such special needs. These after-school programmes can be

run by specialists, or teachers trained in education for ‘gifted’ children,” suggests Dr. Gupta. Another important step, pointed out by Dr. Sandhu, is to train teachers. “Children ask many questions daily, and are often ignored by their teachers, as they are busy finishing the syllabi. As a result, ‘gifted’ children are often neglected. Some teachers describe such students as those with ‘behavioural problems.’ This shows the lack of experience and knowledge of our teachers,” says Dr. Sandhu.   Last year, during a science class, Mrs. Akram, who takes tuition classes in Sector 56, asked students to measure the rate of evaporation of a swimming pool. “A student asked an unexpected question – ‘Ma’am, what if it rains?’ I took him to an expert, and came to know that he was a ‘gifted’ child,” says Mrs. Akram. Today, at the age of 12, the child is a National champion in chess. The contribution of teachers is, therefore, extremely important.  “Teachers should acknowledge this ability, instead of asking the students to follow the same rote methods, which might kill the child’s creativity forever, and hit his/her confidence badly,” says the Director of Excelsior American School, Shalini Nambiar, who has been working hard to promote the concept of ‘giftedness’ in the City. Although a lot of parents feel proud to have ‘gifted’ children, they have to understand that giftedness comes with both distinction and discrimination. ‘Gifted’ children must be nurtured properly, or their high intelligence level and hyper active nature can easily result in their inculcating negative traits. They might end up becoming mere underachievers, mischief-makers or dropouts. u 

Different Strokes A

s Sophie Kinsella, of Confessions of a Shopaholic, rightly says “When I shop, the world gets better, and the world is better, but then it’s not, and I need to do it again.” Witnessing women attack the stores while the holy period of “SALE” descends on this shopping-mall infected neighborhood named Gurgaon is a remarkable sight. Women of all sizes, XS to XXL, go berserk in these malls. Be it multi-brand outlets like Shopper’s Stop, or brand showrooms like Aldo, Mango, or USB, you will not get an inch to move without stepping on someone else’s foot. What makes us women so enthusiastic and charged up about retail therapy is something a male brain can never decipher. I entered into a “Catwalk” store today (after getting attracted to a “SALES” sign board of course). I had firmly promised myself that I will not spurge if I don’t find something which is worth buying; but, by the end of it, I had decided to blow up a sufficient portion of my credit card limit. I justified to myself that had this been a normal day (without any discount) I would have had to shell out a lot more for the same stuff. Being a marketing professional myself, I know that many ‘discounts’ are ‘not really real’. But what I don’t understand is how, despite all of this brilliant knowledge, most of us ‘intelligent’ women folk fall prey to these woman-baiting signs. Let’s just say God has made us this way; or better, let’s just blame it on Science – as men and women’s brains are differently wired. I can confidently say that if the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, then the way to a woman’s heart is through her shopping bag (consider yourself to be an extremely lucky man if your lady love is an exception).

Researchers have shown that that the corpus callosum, the fibrous tissue connecting the brain’s two hemispheres, has much more connectivity in women’s brains then in men’s. This enhanced connectivity allows women to multi-task better. In lay man’s language this means that, while shopping, women will take the time to compare, evaluate and process information – while men are on a mission to get in and get out. This explains the impatience that most men show during shopping sprees; whereas the women folk enjoy every bit of the ordeal of standing in the long trial room queue, and trying out even one dress a multiple number of times (just to be doubly sure that the ‘chosen’ one is the best of the lot). Similarly, we women will never understand what motivates a man to wake up in the middle of the night, to catch the “European League”. As one wise old man rightly put it - When women are depressed, they eat or go shopping; men invade another country. It’s a whole different way of thinking – a different ball-game. Let’s just accept our different wirings, and insulate certain sparking points. To you, Princess, next time you want to go on a shopping spree, do leave your Prince Charming back at home. Let him laze on his couch with his cricket match and popcorns (but of course don’t forget to take his credit card). u Lipi Patel


19-25 October 2012

Health & Vitality... Naturally!

Vital Organ { Jaspal Bajwa }

T

he World Health Report, released in May 2012, has once again redflagged the silent but dramatic growth of chronic lifestyle diseases. Every third person has high blood pressure; one in ten adults suffer from Type 2 Diabetes. The ‘smoking gun’ points squarely at unhealthy eating, and lack of physical exercise. With high blood pressure going undiagnosed till it is too late, up to one third of the population is now at risk; and if left untreated, Type 2 diabetes can lead to cardiovascular disease, blindness and kidney failure. However, not many people know that Type 2 Diabetes is directly related to the pancreas. When our pancreas becomes inflamed, we can develop pancreatitis – and eventually cancer. Pancreas is one of the 5 vital organs in the human body which work in unison. It deserves a lot of respect, as it plays twin roles – as an important source of hormones, as well as digestive enzymes. It secretes both insulin and glucagon, without which blood sugar levels can run riot – like an out-of-control speeding car. It is imperative that we apply the brakes, and stop this rollercoaster before a fatal accident happens. Diet plays a major role. Never in our history has it been more important to avoid large meals. We must instead opt for 4-5 small meals, spread evenly through the day, blending in healthy snacks such as fresh fruits, sprouts, greens, salads, soups, and yoghurt – with a creative flair. Healthcare practitioners often recommend supplementation with Selenium, Magnesium, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin B12 and Vitamin E to avoid pancreatitis. Some of the best foods to include in a Pro-Pancreatic Health Diet are: - Yoghurt: Probiotics are crucial not just for immunity, but also for pancreatic health. However, we must always go for the yogurt which has

{ Alka Gurha }

N

ow that winters are approaching, there is nothing like a hot cup of tea sweetened with jaggery, and flavoured with ginger. However, with modernisation, we have willingly opted for refined sugars, and forgotten all about the natural goodness of gur (jaggery). Gur is pure, traditional, unrefined, whole sugar, made from sugarcane. Since the natural goodness of minerals and vitamins is inherently present in the sugarcane juice, it is said to be one of the healthiest sugars in the world.

How Gur (Jaggery) is made

Raw sugarcane juice is necessary to make gur (jaggery), an unrefined sugar. The juice is simmered in pans until the water evaporates, and the compound then undergoes a clarification process – natural vegetable agents are added, so that the juice separates.  The boiling juice is then moved from one pan to another, until the liquid becomes hard and eventually turns into a solid. Although jaggery and sugar are obtained from the same raw material, they are much different in their appearance, properties and benefits. Unlike sugar,

live cultures. - Vegetable soup is loaded with antioxidants, and the fluid content of soups is good for people with a weak pancreas. Tomatoes are a good source of vitamin C and antioxidants. - Spinach is an excellent choice. Rich in B vitamins and iron, it helps heal inflammation of the pancreas. Broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables, like Brussels sprouts, cabbage and cauliflower are also very good. - Blueberries and cherries are both good sources of antioxidants, which help prevent cell damage. Red wine in moderate quantities, or Red Grapes is rich in an important antioxidant called Resveratrol. However, those already

W ellness

strengthen the pancreas. Some examples are Garlic, Onion. Ginger root, Indian Gooseberry, Asian ginseng, Licorice root, Cinnamon, Chinese bark and Peony root.

Dietician / Nutritionist

Tip of the week

Striking at the root cause is always more effective than trying to cure. Chances of coming down with pancreatic cancer increase with age, and smokers are two or three times more at risk. However, it is not just smoking which needs to be assessed on the ‘To Quit’ list. In addition to reducing the amount of saturated and trans-fats, we should actively consider reducing the total amount of food we eat. It is all about quality, not quantity. Overeating not only leads to obesity but it also puts all our vital organs, including the pancreas, at risk. Any food allergen is suspect, as is the onslaught of chemical additives, preservatives and environmental toxins. Pancreatic distress can be triggered by processed foods high in trans-fats, and can lead to gallstones. Avoiding heavy high fat meals rich in spices, caffeine, and any other foods which produce flatulence(gas) is key. Sweets and desserts hasten the progress from pancreatitis to pancreatic cancer.

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Nature’s Wonder Food(s) of the week: Blueberry

suffering from pancreatitis have to avoid the red wine, and opt for a handful of red grapes instead. - Red Reishi Mushrooms balance the system, and check the inflammation of the pancreas. Sweet potatoes, along with other orange and yellow vegetables, like carrots, corn and squash are also good. In traditional medicine systems, certain herbs have been used to

Blueberries are prized for their sweet edible fruit, and as a natural and extra-rich source of antioxidants. They have one of the highest antioxidant capacities among all fruits, vegetables, spices and seasonings. Because of the high antioxidant content, dietary fibre and other nutrients, blueberries are known to have great health benefits, including being very healthy for the pancreas. Blueberries also help reduce the risk of urinary tract infection, improve eye vision, and importantly lower LDL cholesterol - a cause for stroke and cardiovascular heart disease. Blueberries have steadily but surely been growing to become one of the economical and ornamental powerhouses of nutrition. They are now widely grown around the world. u

Mix banana with curd. Eat this mixture in the morning for instant relief from Mouth ulcers.

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

Natural Goodness no artificial chemical agents are used to manufacture jaggery. No wonder jaggery is called ‘medicinal sugar’. Let us have a look at some of the beneficial effects of jaggery.

Digestive Aid and Antacid

Jaggery proves a great digestive aid, as it speeds up the process of digestion. It is beneficial in treating conditions like indigestion and constipation. In the body, jaggery activates the various digestive enzymes, and itself gets converted to acetic acid, thus speeding up digestion. Eating a few grams of jaggery after a heavy meal is often recommended for those having problems with normal digestion.

Cleansing Agent

Jaggery acts as a cleansing agent for our body, and effectively cleans the respiratory tracts, food pipe, lungs, stomach and intestines. It helps the body to get rid of the unwanted

particles, and thus provides relief from various ailments.

Rich in Minerals

Jaggery is a rich source of many vital minerals that are required by the body for normal growth and functioning. It is considered as a storehouse of various important minerals like iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium. The high potassium content of gur (jaggery) is said to help in reducing bloating, acidity and water retention. The antioxidants in gur (jaggery) help to support a healthy immune system and healthy ageing. Jaggery has been used since ancient times to treat problems such as dry cough, common cold and asthma. Jaggery is a rich source of iron, and is therefore very good for anaemic people; it increases the haemoglobin level in the blood. However it is important to remember that gur (jaggery) is essentially sucrose. Since it is made up of longer chains of sucrose, jaggery releases energy slowly, as compared to instantaneous bouts of energy released by sugar. It may not be appropriate for those with diabetes or blood sugar imbalances. u


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19-25 October 2012

I

The Middle Pathism

t is perhaps a rude awakening to realize that, despite being an almost $ 2 trillion economy, and an emerging ‘superpower’, we still count for little on the world stage. In both word and deed. Let us keep the economics to one side – that has been talked of enough. In essence, even today we have little say (and not say much, or take a stand anyway) in world matters; we have even less say with our neighbours.

EDITORIAL Atul Sobti

F

Y

our paper is a refreshing change and keeps one abreast with the week’s happenings in Gurgaon and is an interesting read over the weekend. Perhaps more information on theatres & plays and any special offers from hotels & restaurants would make the family weekend more enjoyable. Anjan Roy

world-class sites, especially for Buddhism followers globally. Just the tourism potential is overwhelming. The Dharma-chakra of Buddhism is already represented in the Ashoka Chakra, one of our prominent national symbols. A big bonus would be the integration and inclusiveness of the Dalits, many of whom have embraced, or wish to embrace, Buddhism. It should definitely lead to a better life and recognition for them. It will also perhaps occasion a needed, closer look at some practices of Hinduism. (India also needs to celebrate Hinduism more, and with pride. But that story, another time.)

It’s time for a new game plan – a new awakening. Who better to awaken us than Siddharth, Gautam – the Buddha. Charity begins at, and near, home. We need to put our own house in order, and We need to integrate with Asia better. then turn to Asia. Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, South This is where Buddhism can be the East Asia, Japan, Korea, even China, have force multiplier. Buddhist leanings. Our relations with immediate neighbours While Hinduism was perhaps the base for Buddhism, it, and the Indian govt., needs would improve. Japan, a super power, already has begun to stop playing big brother. Nepal should be a lesson. We have handed it on a platter to a tilt towards India; Buddhism would be a great catalyst. Maoists and China. Many East Asian nations also have Hinduism should happily accept the many good paths offered by Buddhism. In fact, been influenced by Hinduism along with we in India need to celebrate Buddhism Buddhism. A more Buddhist leaning in much more; we need to promote this India would help ensure a better integration home-grown way of life that has caught across Asia. Maybe even Nepal will get warmer – after the global imagination. It does not have to be about the Dalai Lama only. A broader all, the Buddha was born there. engagement would also take the issue beyond With Buddhism we can truly trod the a Tibet-China arena. Middle Path. Nirvana should be achievable. u Bodh Gaya and Sarnath should become

LETTER TO THE EDITOR riday gurgaon has come across to be a very informational paper whiich i enjoy reading a lot. I feel that it really covers what goes on in gurgaon and is a really good read. Kaustav Sood

Comment

V

ery heartening to read your note. We must maintain our aim of trying for a corruption free society. It will need a massive weeding out of elements encouraging corrupt practices. The movement must not be allowed to die down as the existing set up has caused desperation   to everyone. Keep it up Major Mehandru (Retd )

G

iven the diversity of population in Gurgaon, it must be quite a challenge to put together a newspaper that would appeal to someone living in old gurgaon (and I don’t mean it in a pejorative way) and Laburnum! While I do enjoy reading the paper, I feel the design and presentation could be improved

- some more colour, and interesting visuals. Also, greater focus on what I would call News You Can Use - more information in terms of new/offbeat kind of groups (photography enthusiasts) and services that are being offered, and if possible - more reviews, of restaurants, spas, cultural events at Epicentre etc. But on the whole, it’s a good read and I do plan to renew my subscription. Good luck to you and your team. Priya Shirali

I

nteresting read !! My kids especially love the “Haryanavi made Easy” section. Regards Atul Dhingra

FAMOUS QUOTES By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest. Confucius A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination. Nelson Mandela I’d rather regret the things I’ve done than regret the things I haven’t done. Lucille Ball A man begins cutting his wisdom teeth the first time he bites off more than he can chew. Herb Caen If you only have a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail. Abraham Maslow

Every man is a damn fool for at least five minutes every day; wisdom consists in not exceeding the limit. Elbert Hubbard Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal. Henry Ford The universe is not required to be in perfect harmony with human ambition. Carl Sagan Contentment is the only real wealth. Alfred Nobel You can no more win a war than you can win an earthquake. Jeannette Rankin If you want to make God laugh, tell him your future plans. Woody Allen


B on V ivant

19-25 October 2012

Heal Thyself

{ Bhavana Sharma }

M

editation is the process of getting to know ourselves completely – who I am inside, and how I react to what is outside. It’s a process to discover a very different ‘me’, from perhaps the stressed or troubled person who may seem superficially very positive. I can realise that my true nature, the real me, is actually very positive. I then begin to discover an ocean of peace at my own doorstep.

Why do we need to Meditate? Some want peace of mind, others self control; some want power, and some ... silence. The most important reason should be for peace of mind and a balanced personality. Peace is an experience, but peace of mind should become a way of life. At another level, meditation is a tool to combat stress, foster physical health, help with chronic pain, make us sleep better, feel happier, and be more peaceful. But at a deeper level, meditation is the doorway to the unknown. It can help us get a sense of the mystery of who we are. When we start meditating, we notice how unruly the mind is; and that we need to train it, to bring us lasting peace.

How to Meditate Posture

Whether you sit on a chair, or cross-legged on the floor, make sure that your spine is upright, with your head up. If you are slumped, your mind will drift. Mind and body are intertwined. If your body is well-balanced, your mind will also be in balance. To straighten up, imagine that your head is touching the sky.

Eyes

Enjoy your Meditation Most of all it’s important to enjoy meditation. You might like to try sitting with a hint of a smile. Be kind to yourself. Start sitting just a little each day. It’s helpful to establish a daily habit with yourself.

A simple Meditation Practice

Focus

Breath

Paying attention to the breath is a great way to anchor yourself in the present moment. Notice your breath streaming in and out. There’s no need to regulate the breath – just let it be natural. If you are having difficulties settling, you can try counting the breath – which is an ancient meditation practice. On your outbreath, silently count “one”, then “two”, and up to “four”. Then return to “one”. Whenever you notice your thoughts have strayed far away, or you find yourself counting “thirtythree”, simply return to “one”. In this way, “one” is like coming home to the present moment. It’s good to return without a backward glance.

Thoughts

When you notice thoughts, gently let them go, by returning your focus to the breath. Don’t try and stop thoughts; this will just make you feel agitated. Imagine that they are unwelcome visitors at your door. Acknowledge their presence and politely ask

{ Dr. Rajesh Bhola }

D

and objects that have meaning for you. Find objects for your altar as you walk; you may find stones, or seashells, or flowers that speak to you!

Try and keep your eyes open. Open eyes allow you to be more 'present'. Just lower your eyes and let your gaze be soft. If you close your eyes you will be more likely to drift. However, some people find closing their eyes to be much more effective. It’s good to experiment and see what feels best for you. In ordinary consciousness we are hardly ever present. For example, sometimes we drive the car on 'autopilot', while being preoccupied with thoughts. Suddenly we arrive at our destination, and don’t remember anything about the drive!

o you remember yourself as a child on a swing? You pushed (or were pushed) and you went up; then reached a high, and came down. Our feelings act similarly. The emotional swings come from our beliefs. If we get good news we feel pushed up; bad news swings us back down. It is also like the see saw rides. When our side goes up, we feel high; when the other side goes up, we start feeling low. This is the world of our feelings, faiths and beliefs. At times we are out of touch with, or busy suppressing, our feelings; at other times we are overwhelmed by them. Feelings are fickle. They have little base in reality. If we think we are right our feelings take us up – and vice-versa. Right and wrong have no foundation except in our mind. Psychologists often have people come and present themselves as being out of touch with their feelings. Feelings arise from an exposure to particular stimuli. A person who is out of touch with his feelings is probably not facing their pain either. What comes up in us is largely a series of conditioned responses. For us to find our feelings, we do not need to look for them; we just need to hold our attention

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them to leave. Then shine the soft light of your attention on your breath.

Emotions

It’s difficult to settle into meditation if you are struggling with strong emotions. This is because some emotions tend to breed stories in the mind. Especially anger, shame and fear create stories that repeat over and over in the mind. The way to deal with strong emotions is to focus on the body feelings that accompany the emotion. Let go of the stories, and refocus on your body.

Silence

Silence is healing. I know that there is a lot of ‘meditation music’ around, but nothing beats simple silence. The music or sounds just drown out the chatter in your mind; when we sit in silence we actually get to experience what our mind is doing. There is steadiness and calmness that comes from sitting in silence. In time, outer and inner silence meet, and you come to rest 'in the moment'.

Duration

Start with 10 minutes, and

only sit longer if you feel that that is too short. Don’t force yourself to meditate longer if you are not ready to do that. In time you might like to extend your meditation to 25 minutes. That’s a length that allows you to settle your mind without causing too much stress on your body. Most importantly, shrug off any ‘shoulds’. Some people enjoy sitting for an hour at a time; others find that they can’t sit longer than 10 minutes – you should sit till you want to.

Place

It’s a good idea to create a special place to sit. You can even make a shrine, or an altar, that you can face when you sit in meditation. You might like to place a candle on your altar,

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Swings & See-Saws to the stimuli that may be expected to produce them. Feelings are natural and proper. Even an ‘advanced’ spiritual person feels. The belief, overt or implicit, that enlightenment will be reached only when we get emotions of a particular kind, or when ‘bad’ feelings have been eliminated, is quite untrue. One of the volunteers at our Society, who had been in the psychiatric ward of a hospital for a long time and was now gradually returning to ‘normal life’, came to me one day and said “ I have cried for the first time in my life, and I know you will be pleased.” She was right. This was a person who, despite being thorugh so much tragedy, had been unable to express any feelings of distress or dejection. As a counsellor, particularly to parents who have special children, I spend much of my time listening. As I tune in to them a kind of resonance starts to occur.

As you sit in meditation, take one aspect of yourself that you would like to change. A few times a day create just one or two very powerful positive thoughts which will help change that negative habit or trait. Do this with all the energy and enthusiasm you can muster. When that positive thought for change comes into your mind several times, it will make you more confident. It will help you when that intention becomes action at the appropriate time. You will discover that that earlier you had dismissed your positive qualities, or perceived them as insignificant in your life. Now you start to value them, by bringing them into conscious awareness. You can thus create a new view of yourself with the support of meditative practice. As you integrate this new feeling you will open yourself to new vistas of spiritual expansion. u Tarot reader& Author

I feel something of what they feel. As they describe what concerns them, I imaginatively accompany them and start treading the same difficult path which they have passed through. This experience of empathetic resonance, or negative capability, is well-known to counsellors and psychotherapists. It takes a certain amount of training, however, to realize that these are not simply ‘my own feelings’, even though I am really feeling them. When I realize that they are not mine, then noticing what is arising in me gives me very helpful information about the suffering of the parents. This experience of becoming a container for feelings which have been triggered by listening emphatically to somebody else’s story also enables us to learn that we are containers for the feelings triggered by our own story. Even when the feelings are my own, in the sense that they relate to events in my own life, it is still pos-

sible for me to regard them with a degree of dispassion even as they are occurring: by being not too close and not too far away.” This is also one the acknowledged modern techniques for developing leadership, and is known as ‘acting while sitting in the gallery also’ method of realizing the difficulties of others. This ability to be both in and aside from the feeling, at the same time, is something that needs to be cultivated. No religion teaches us to not have feelings. We cannot stop feelings. We are to allow the process to flow, whilst also being able to observe it. The flow of feelings gives us essential information about our lives. To cut them off would be one extreme – the extreme of asceticism. To abandon ourselves to their control would be the other extreme – the extreme of indulgence. There is a middle way, a middle current where life flows effectively. There we can observe feeling, while in the feelings. 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.


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A rt

19-25 October 2012

Shakti Stylistics

Dharmapal: Durga, with infant Ganesha on lap

Suhas Roy: Christ Head

{ Srimati Lal }

more valuable assets on its premises than mere body-building! However, as this is only the 2nd art exhibition at this venue, a certain casualness of display is evidenced. Despite being small and secluded, the space has a fairly tasteful ambience, which could have been utilised to better effect. This is a rather random collection of works of a few Kolkata thespians, who have been assembled alongside a smattering of paintings by younger,

I

n this auspicious Season of Shakti -- with ‘Maha-Shashthi’ heralding Durga Devi into our environment this weekend -- it is appropriate to review a collection called ‘Artists From Bengal’ – on display for the Durga Puja week until Oct. 22, at the HDFC Bank and Vatika Atrium on Golf Course Road. This timely Exhibition has been organised by Kolkata’s ‘Akar Prakar Gallery’, along with a group of young enterpreneurs called ‘Round Table India’ and HDFC Bank. The latter partnership— offering the bank premises to exhibit fine art— emphasises an increasing corporate awareness that Art is a covetable mode of investment, as well as an activity that lends immense social credibility, recognition and upward mobility to urban professionals and companies. Fifteen artists from Bengal have been exhibited on a small scale, with small to mediumformat works, in a quiet basement-space that was previously a gym at the HDFC premises. Evidently, the bank management felt that intellectual and cultural stimulation are Dharmanarayan Dasgupta: Tiger carrying a framed portrait

Sanjay Bhattacharya: Barbed-wire fences

Prasenjit Sengupta: Portraits

Paritosh Sen: Self-Potrait with street dog

emerging Bengali artists. A wider, more reliable range of works, with greater curatorial focus, was expected from ‘Akar Prakar’.  It includes interesting works by the late senior pioneers Dharmanarayan Dasgupta and Paritosh Sen. Individual pieces by current senior artists such  as Suhas Roy, Sanat Kar, Sanjay Bhattacharya and Shuvaprasanna are juxtaposed with a set of recent works by Prasenjit Sengupta, Dharmapal, Debashish Das, Subroto Gangopadhyay, Beena Pradhan,  Shipra Bhattacharya,  Subir Dey and Mahajabin Majumdar.  The folksy water-colour painting by Dharmapal, at the entry to the show, strikes the current festive note, with its depiction of Ma Durga in red, carrying the infant Ganesha on her lap. Technically, however, this painting bears an evident Jamini Roy simulation. With a deceptively pleasing palette of reds and yellows, Dharmapal conveys just a touch of the Bengal-folk heritage. But he lacks the grace and flow of Jamini Roy’s masterful and original artistic  visualisations of the Kalighat Devis. Paritosh Sen, the Picasso-inspired Kolkata Modernist, who passed away aged 90 in 2008, is represented by an interesting Mixed-media ‘SelfPortrait with Street-Dog’, as well as a pair of Limited Edition prints. The Self-Portrait contains a typically-Bengali

pathos with a compassionate stance. Sen’s vibrant colour-palette is, however, not evidenced in any of the works. The quirky magic-realism of Dharmanarayan Dasgupta is well conveyed in his amusingly vivid water-colour painting of a smiling Bengal Tiger suspended in flight, while carrying a framed profileportrait of a Bhadralok-Lady. Perhaps the finest works in this show are by the veteran Suhas Roy, and the younger Prasenjit. An extremely delicate, chiselled, graphic Suhas Roy ‘Christ Head,’ in a Limited Edition print, exemplifies this artist’s great sensitivity – with both emotions and linear skill.   Roy’s piercingly realistic, transcendent gaze of Christ, wearing his burdenous crown of thorns, is both powerful and poignant.  Similarly, the small dyptich facial portraits of a young man and woman, by the 1964-born Prasenjit, are lucid and accomplished. Despite being acrylics on canvas, these naunced and poetic heads impressively convey the softness and subtlety of pencil or charcoal sketches. Another compelling paperwork is a sepia-toned watercolour of barbed-wire fences glinting in the afternoon sun, well-executed by the gifted Sanjay Bhattacharya.  By contrast, the more recent contemporary experiments of Mahajabin, Subir and Beena fall short – both in terms of emotional content and technical mastery. The ‘X-factor’ denoting all great art is always a certain ‘human connect.’ This must be combined with originality of vision, an evident technical finesse, and savoir-faire.   Undue fiddling with textural details, or incongruous elements, always distracts from integral aesthetic communications.  In future, delineation of a more careful selection of Bengali artists’ oeuvres and themes, in a reliable Catalog, would also be appreciated. Bengal Art has long been admired across the world for its emotional, intellectual, visceral and spiritual content, as well as for its advanced technical skills. Evidently these are commercial times, resulting in an unfortunate ‘standardisation’ – even in art. I remain convinced, however, that Bengal’s  radical fire remains hidden in the best of its more unassuming and quiet artistic ateliers --- awaiting further evolution, discovery and analysis. u Artist, Writer, & Curator


19-25 October 2012

A Bird's-Eye View  Contd from p 1 Though some people feel that the sport isn’t about competition, others disagree. “No sport is interesting enough unless you make it competitive,” smiles Col. Khanna, whose team has been winning India Bird Race for the last two years. Giving tips to amateur bird watchers, Col. Khanna says, “A good bird watcher not only notes down the visual and behavioural characteristics of birds, but should also make their sketches.” He also advises bird watchers to learn various bird calls and songs, and wear earthen colours so as to attract them. Col. Khanna plans to start the first birding institute, where people can learn the intricacies of bird watching The mission of bird races is not just to spot birds, but also to create awareness about species, and alert authorities to preserve them. Seema Thakur, a Delhi-based ecologist, and a regular visitor to the Sultanpur Sanctuary, says “I was impressed by the bird watching lobby in Gurgaon, that asked the forest department to look into the development of Sultanpur Lake. As a result, the forest department issued a notice, and initiated a cleaning drive in the area.” Srikant Murthy, who travels all the way from

Hong Kong to the City for bird watching, feels that every year the arrival and departure of migrant birds keeps changing, depending on the local environment. “As the Forest Department of Haryana has stopped mining activities in the Aravallis, this area has received more rainfall this year. Thus,we are also expecting the arrival of flamingos and bar-headed geese this year.”

Bird restaurants and water centres

Bird watching expeditions are also encouraging the new concept of setting up restaurants and water centres for birds. With the help of the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), the Vulture Breeding Centre in Pinjore has set up a vulture restaurant. Over 20 vulture chicks have been born in the centre in the past three years. Vultures are a pampered lot there. The food is tested before it is given fed to them, and ornithologists monitor the activities of birds through CCTV cameras. As vultures need to take a bath every day, fresh water is made available to them regularly. The Centre has also become a paradise for bird watchers. “Over 99 per cent of the population of vultures has vanished in the State. Spotting them even in national parks like Sultanpur is a challenge. The Vulture Breeding

Centre in Pinjore is, therefore, the best place for a vulture lover. Last year, the Centre received more than 40 bird watchers,” says Prasanan. After the advent of this Vulture Breeding Centre, the state of Punjab has also set up three restaurants for vultures in Gurdaspur district Similarly, a Sarus Crane restaurant has been established in Farrukhnagar. After the reports of temporary blindness and the death of a Sarus Crane due to the intake of harmful pesticides in the field, Dr. Mitra, an ornithologist and an ardent bird watcher, bought a small piece of land in the Farrukhnagar area. “The idea was to set up a food and water centre exclusively for Sarus Cranes. There are arrangements for food and fresh water. In January, you would spot 10 Sarus Cranes here. Dr. Mitra is also promoting the centre as a bird watching sight. He has also called experts to study the behaviour of Sarus Cranes. The Centre is, however, a temporary shelter – that remains open from October to March only. Due to the efforts of avid bird watchers, Sultanpur bird sanctuary is now teeming with migratory birds that have flown in even from far away Australia and Central Asia. Bird watching expeditions have helped not only in protecting the natural habitat of these birds, but also in finding rare and unidentified species of birds. There is a wealth of birds around the City.u

Jit kumar

Making A Difference

{ Anita Jaswal }

D

on’t Retire, REWIRE! Today, many people continue working after the traditional retirement age, whether it’s for financial reasons or because they’re passionate about doing what they want to do. All their lives, Surinder Kumar Chadha and his wife Usha have believed strongly that every one of us has been put in this world to contribute and make a difference in our own unique way. It need not be anything ‘extra-ordinary’. It just needs to be something you do with the intention of doing good. And their something was giving under-privileged children a chance to escape poverty and neglect. A civil engineer, Chadha retired as a Chief Engineer from BSNL, and his wife retired

as a Principal of Kendriya Vidyalaya. “Education is a gift for life. Seven million children under the age of 14 years do not have access to education, and approximately 50 per cent of these children drop out before they complete their elementary education. Today we have the chance to choose social work as a post retirement career, and we are happily doing it. There are many frustrations, but also a ton of rewards. We sometimes struggle with the question of whether we are we making a difference. We think we are,” says Chadha happily. “You are never finished learning. Use your formal education, but remain human;  be human and understand.  There is so much to be done. We have found a large number of kids dropping out of school. The motive is

C over S tory

19

4U

Tips

by ShahnaZ 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. I love applying kaajal to my eyes and have tried many

Ritika Das

brands. Of all the ones I have tried, some get smudged easily, and others don’t stay for even half a day. What brand do you suggest?

SH

I can suggest our own brand, since we do not know the ingredients in other brands. Our Shaeyes is a herbal kaajal and is made according to the Ayurvedic system. In order to prevent smudging, apply less kaajal just under the eyelashes on the lower eyelids. Then apply dark eye shadow over it. The same can be done if you apply Kaajal on the upper eyelids.

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Rachna Sharma

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

to reduce the drop-out rate, build confidence, and create a bigger literate population – to make India competitive in the long run,” adds Usha. She first teaches yoga to the residents in the morning; then, by 4pm, children from the underprivileged and vulnerable sections from the neighbouring village, Tigara, and those going in the morning to Neev (an NGO) and some private schools in the area, start pouring in. The Chadhas consolidate what has been taught in the schools, and help with the home work. What started with 2-3 children has grown to nearly 20. They conduct these classes in the lift lobby and they are grateful to the Apartment Association of Close North for allowing them this opportunity. Their son and daughter-in-law, who stay with them, are proud of their parents’ efforts. “Though we cannot physically contribute to the good work they are doing, we are really proud of them. Once I thought I was proud of their career accomplishments, but what they are

doing today beats everything else. I’m lucky to be born to such parents,” says their son proudly. This enterprising couple strongly believes in the adage: You give a man a fish, you feed him for a day; teach him how to fish; you feed him for a lifetime. The good that they seek to do will make more of a difference when there’s a longlasting effect. “The best thing about this effort is to see the enthusiasm and energy in the children – which is delightful. We see a world where children are free from poverty and live in happiness. We hope this education will help children become self-sufficient, responsible adults, and help others realize their potential.This is our little contribution to make a difference to society,” says Usha modestly. Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. This couple has sacrificed their time and money in order to help the underprivileged – which makes them extra-ordinary citizens. u

Get Alive's Shoebox Full Of Smiles Date: September 18 to October 28

Here is a chance to do something meaningful this Diwali. Join Get Alive’s Shoebox Full of Smiles - 2012 Campaign. All you have to do is prepare a little Gift Box for an underprivileged child, and brighten up his/ her Diwali. The Campaign hopes to gather gifts for at least 1,000 children in Gurgaon this Diwali. How It Works:  Fill up a form to pledge your Shoebox  Fill up your Shoebox (there is an 'Inspiration List' to guide you)  Drop the Box at the Collection Centre.

Collection Centres Bagiya School, Aid Gurgaon, Gaurav Niketan, and Ashish Foundation Contact: Pooja Chadha 9871911010, Niriti Vaid 9310930808


20

19-25 October 2012

{ Shilpy Arora / FG }

O

ne for all and all for one” is how Global Cultural Foundation describes itself. Five years ago, when the founder, Col. (Retd.) R.C Chadha, saw one of his rich friends going into depression, he realised that sometimes even having the luxuries of life is not enough. It is happiness that most people seek. “Everybody talks about providing senior citizens with good doctors and the best medical treatment, but no one thinks about their happiness,” says the Col. Touched by the despair among many senior citizens, Col. Chadha decided to start a foundation and organise events for senior citizens. This marked the birth of Global Cultural Club, a social club that aimed to spread happiness among the elderly. “The idea was to provide the proverbial ‘last hurrah’ to all the senior citizens in the City,”

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

E

xperts opine that instead of just looking to supply side solutions, like producing more power, buying more and setting up more feeder stations, the government should also see power as a limited resource, and promote its efficient use – as is being done across the world. With almost 20 per cent of electricity across the world being used for lighting in homes, industry and outdoors, experts suggest that there is immense potential to save energy if efficient lighting solutions are promoted by the government and civil society. In a global city like Gurgaon which works 24 hours a day, efficient lighting solutions, though a bit expensive, could greatly help in reducing power consumption. Architect Ambhimaniyu Bhatia says that if the City replaces traditional light bulbs with CFLs and LEDs, it could reduce energy consumption on lighting by almost 75 per cent. It also reduces the pollution by an equal amount, he adds. The use of an energy efficient lighting system becomes all the more important because India’s energy intensity per unit of GDP is higher than the rest of Asia, USA and Japan. A note by CEA says that this

says Col. Chadha. Formed in 2007, the Club soon turned into a Foundation, and registered as an NGO. It has over 400 dedicated members, comprising retired judges, army/civil officers, businessmen, doctors, advocates, engineers, and charted accountants. Today, it is managed by a Managing Committee of seven members, that include senior bureaucrats from banking and military services, and senior professionals. “We applied for affiliation with the Indian Council of Cultural Relations, and opened new avenues for the members to participate in international exchange programmes,” says Dr. Bhasin, a retired doctor and a member of the group.  

Rejuvenating with Music

With a belief that music is the best therapy, the members of GCF organise several live singing shows, in which ghazals and melodies of the ‘golden era’

are dedicated to legends such as KL Sehgal, Kishore Kumar, Mohd Rafi, and Dev Anand, to name a few. The NGO gives a platform to those who have never had an opportunity to showcase their talent. Currently, 15 radio and television artistes are

The Foundation also offers coaching classes by a famous guitarist and music teacher, Khanduri. His disciples help in this endeavour.

For Madhavi Duggal, a 63-year-old retired professor, GCF has been a great support system. “With the tradition of children caring for the elderly almost disappearing, we, the elderly, are forced to live alone. It is therefore important to be

a part of a club like GCF, and participate in various interactive activities. We all make sure that everyone has someone around,” she says. Kant, a retired bureaucrat, who lives alone in his lavish 1 acre bungalow, finds the activities of the group very helpful. “We are not able to walk on our own. Family members do not like to accompany us. People take advantage of our situation. It is therefore important to be united, and form a closeknit group to fight against the injustice in the society,” says Kant. Working to keep themselves entertained and engrossed, the members make sure that nobody feels depressed. “There is today a sense of isolation among the elderly. When we retire from our lucrative jobs we plan for a quality, happy life. However, many children do not have time to talk to their parents or listen to their problems. Thus, joining groups like GCF is a great way to keep yourself busy and remain active members of society,” says Col. Chadha.u

CFLs: Because of their comparatively lower price CFLs are considered to be a better option for a country like India. CFLs are compact in size, and save up to 70 per cent energy, as compared to a normal bulb. Although they produce less luminosity as compared to tubelights, the energy efficiency brought about by them pays back the cost in a year. Lesser energy consumed means a saving of an enormous amount of natural resources – less use of diesel, and lesser pollution. Different CFL bulbs are available in the market, ranging from Rs. 100 to Rs. 1,000 – depending on the wattage. Tubelights: A typical fluorescent tubelight now offers 50 to 70 per cent power saving, as electronic ballasts have come into vogue, to stabilise the current in the lamp. A T5 tubelight with electronic ballast is a great option. There are higher versions such as T12, and T8; but for a home the best would be to use T5, as it provides almost 50 per cent power saving. Tubelights of different companies are available in the range of Rs. 100 to Rs. 5,000. Motion Sensors and Dimmers: These can be used to

turn the light off when it is not needed, particularly in offices. Dimmers can be used to get the right amount of light, and to set the mood. Timers are a device that can be used to turn things off and on whenever required. Material: Lighting is not only about bulbs; house owners could also opt for ecofriendly fixtures that are easy to maintain. It would be another positive if such gear is made from natural, recycled or re-used material. Good Habits: In case you have standard bulbs, turn these off even if you leave the room for just a few seconds; CFLs should be turned off if you are going out for more than 3 minutes; and LEDs should be shut if the time is 15 minutes. There is enormous scope for savings if one follows these thumb rules. Last but not the least, design your house such that daylight is utilised in an optimum manner. There are houses and buildings in Gurgaon where you do not need to switch on the lights during the day. The commercial and residence builders in Gurgaon will have to give due attention to energy saving, because lack of power could one day become the nemesis of the Millennium City – driving both business and people out to other suburbs. u

Other activities

associated with GCF. Nothing relaxes the mind and soul better than music. Anybody can take to the stage and sing. The music not only transports the soul into a world beyond, but the musician creating it becomes a vehicle in this journey,” says Sharma, who after joining GCF has performed almost six times on the stage. He gives credit to the Foundation for bringing out his hidden talent. Another member, Maini, a cancer patient, feels that life is beautiful and it is important to live life to the fullest. “Singing is a great way to de-stress. Apart from organising big music concerts at Epicentre we make it a point to meet informally, and organise small music nights from time to time. Sometimes, of course, just talking to a friend helps”, says Maini.

Green Bulbs

indicates inefficient use of power, but also points to enormous scope for energy saving. Probash Chawla, former President of DLF Beverly Park 1 RWA, told Friday Gurgaon that he has cut down on the power consumption in his own flat, by installing energy efficient LED bulbs, that are the latest innovation in the arena of lighting. “We have installed these bulbs in our building as well, and employed other energy saving measures, to cut the power consumption by many thousand units,” he asserts. Chawla says that intelligent use of LED and CFL lights can save energy, as these produce the same luminosity, but don’t waste energy in the form of heat. The LED bulbs right now are quite expensive as compared to CFLs, but it is a one time expense that leads to great savings, he adds. Experts suggest that before installing bulbs in a room, a formula can be used to estimate the number required in a specific area. As per the formula, the Lamp Wattage required is 1.5 times the area of the room in square feet; for specific tasks/areas the factor of 2.5 is used. This rule can be

Jit Kumar

For Old Times' Sake

B on V ivant

used to calculate the lamps and wattage needed for every room. For example, for a room of 10×30 ft, the light in watts required is 1.5x10x30 = 450Watts. An energy audit could also be done with the help of experts, preferably before the construction of the house – to know the optimum lighting mix, say experts. Lighting options: LEDs: These are the most efficient lighting options available in the market, as they consume 50 per cent less power than even CFLs. These are a bit expensive, but companies also give a warranty of up to 10 years. They last around 100, 000 hours, and light up faster than regular bulbs. These are also maintenance free. The only issue with them is that they produce an angled light, depending upon the reflectors used in the bulb. Experts say LEDs are the future of lighting in the world, and the sooner the cities adopt them, the better it would be for them – as power production is increasingly becoming expensive.

The Foundation organises health camps, talk shows, and interactive games at the Epicentre and the Community Centre at Sector 17. Under the banner of Global Citizen Forum (GCF), Col. Chadha also conducts recreational tours for the elderly. “Last year, we toured the Akshardham temple, Suraj Kund, and the Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary. It was really a wonderful trip for all the members, and they are going to remember it for years to come,” says Col. Chadha.

A great Support System


B usiness 21

19-25 October 2012

Exporters Exit { Abhishek Behl / FG }

E

xporters in Gurgaon, particularly those dealing in garments, are less worried about the tough economic conditions and uncertainty in the US and EU markets, that is threatening to undermine their entire business; they are more concerned about the indifferent attitude of the state government and the administration towards industry as a whole. Exporters say that instead of helping them, and facilitating the industry, that employs thousands of workers in the Millennium City, the bureaucratic set up is creating impediments in their smooth working. The insistence of the bureaucracy to control and micro-manage everything, including infrastructure, is not something that would help the industry, particularly exports, say industry watchers. Currently Gurgaon has around 300 small and medium garment export units, that are battling higher interest rates and a lack of demand from buyers abroad. They however find local red-tape to be the toughest challenge confronting them. Chand K. Anand, President of All India Garment Exporters Common Cause Guild, says that a large number of exporters in Udyog Vihar have closed shop, because they can not fulfill the regulatory demands of HSIIDC. He had recently led a delegation to the Chief Minister, but says no one in the government is ready to listen. “The exporters are working in a competitive environment, and have to fight with China, Bangladesh and other countries to gain market share. But when they do not have a peace of mind to run their factories, how can exporters grow here,” asserts Anand. The primary demand of the Gurgaon based exporters, and other industrialists, has been to extend the FAR upto 250 per cent, and this should not be linked with ‘One time Amnesty Scheme’, with over-riders for availing the benefit within a time frame, says Anand. The poor infrastructure in the City, lack of water supply for industrial and drinking purposes, scarce parking, and too many traffic bottlenecks further make it difficult to operate in Gurgaon. Anand says that if the entrepreneurs install power generators they are accused of zoning violations by the authorities, which is something beyond c o m p r e h e n s i o n !Expor ters suggest that the power infrastructure in Gurgaon has to be improved, to provide adequate, regular and uninterrupted supply at reasonable rates to industry. In view of the acute power

shortage, government should encourage captive power generation, by providing diesel at international prices, and exempt it from excise duty and local taxes, they add. While exporters in Udyog Vihar are more worried over FAR and other changes in the Estate Management Rules of the HSIIDC, the entrepreneurs in Manesar say they are being hassled by the government to pay enhancements to the tune of lakhs. “When a businessman has bought a plot for Rs. 10 lakhs, why should be made to pay double the amount as enhancement, to further compensate farmers?”, asks Amina Shervani, President of the Manesar Industrial Welfare Association. She further says that a number of exporters in Manesar want to change their line of business, as it is becoming increasingly difficult to manage things in the present scenario. The despondency among the entrepreneurs, particularly the exporters, is such that they do not want to discuss the situation that is prevailing in Gurgaon. M.K Jain, an exporter, asserts that nothing is going to change in Gurgaon, whatever may be written in newspapers, as the government is not committed to help the industry. “There is rampant corruption. The export houses are facing tough conditions, both at home and abroad, and as a result many have closed down in Gurgaon,” says Jain. Colonel Anil Chawla, an exporter of leather products based in Manesar, further says that the government should not interfere in their working, and rather let them ply their trade. “Don’t disturb people, let them work. A majority of exporters in Gurgaon and Manesar are small and medium houses, that do not have the time and resources to fight both the government, as well as competitors abroad,” asserts Chawla. Many schemes that were launched in Haryana, to help

exporters, have remained on paper, he informs. It is not as if only the small exporters are suffering. The declining trend in the growth rate of garment exports, which started in 2008-09 has continued, and further worsened during 2012-2013. The global economic slowdown, and uncertainty in both US and European markets, is going to cast a dark shadow on India’s export sector, that has not been able to shake off the after effects of the 2008 recession, says Surinder Anand, General Secretary of the Garment Exporters Association. “Apart from this, there have been a number of indigenous factors, particularly high transaction costs, increasing input costs, high inflation rate, tight credit policy, higher interest rate, rigid and outdated labour laws, poor infrastructure, high power cost and frequent power cuts, increasing cost of wages and steep hikes in fabric and yarn prices-all adversely affecting the competitive strength of the Indian Apparel Industry,” says Anand, who is an industry veteran. Labour issues in particular, are affecting the export sector in Gurgaon, says Shervani. The skewed policies of the government help neither the labour nor the entrepreneur – only the middlemen. “Exports here are labour intensive, and the cost of input is also increasing in Gurgaon; the infrastructure, power and similar issues are putting a question mark on Gurgaon’s viability as an industrial destination,” she says. Industry experts second her opinion, saying that garments manufacturing remains a very labour intensive process, despite increasing automation. With low productivity common in the region, the time has come for introducing productivity linked wages, and also hiring on short term basis, to meet the seasonal orders from overseas buyers. Surinder Anand   says that

to achieve the apparel export target of 18 Billion US$, production capacity of apparel units would need to be increased substantially. The required investment in the industry has not been forthcoming, as most of the garments manufacturing units are still in the small sector, he admits. There are some other measures that the industry says should be taken by the government, to help the export sector get through this tricky period. Jagdish Bellany, of the Apparel Exporters and Manufacturers Association, says that there is an urgent need to hike duty drawback rates by 5 per cent, by increasing the scope and coverage of duty drawback scheme, so as to ensure full reimbursement of excise duties, custom duties, service tax, education cess and various state level taxes. Bellany further says that there is need to accept and implement the recommendations of the Task Force on Transaction Cost in Exports, to reduce the transaction cost so as to enhance export competitiveness. There is also need to increase the rate of service tax refund, from 0.15 per cent to 1.5 per cent, in view of the 2 per cent increase in the service tax rate from 10 to 12 per cent. “Import duty on manmade fibres  should be reduced to zero, so that the garment exporters can get cheaper man made fabrics in

Shri V. P. Bajaj

the country,” asserts Bellany. Last, but not the least, experts says that there is urgent need to ensure exchange rate stability. The sudden and unexpected decline in rupee value has negatively affected large exporters, who have hedged large positions, as no one expected such a steep fall in the value of the rupee. It is thus quite clear that, to save the export sector from going into an abyss, the government will need to get rid of the bureaucratic mindset that impinges on growth. It must be realised that to compete with the 21st

century world, India can not operate on an antiquated mental and operational set up. This country needs to wake up and change, to meet and overcome the tough challenges ahead. u

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22

19-25 October 2012

The History Of The EU

{ Brussels / DPA }

T

he European Union was founded after World War II, intended to prevent the unimaginable suffering from ever happening again. Here are some key milestones in its history – from its founding as a six-nation, primarily economic community, to its current status as a political and economic grouping of 27 countries: April 18, 1951: Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg sign the founding treaty of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC). March 25, 1957: The six members of the ECSC sign the Treaty of Rome, which creates the European Economic Community (EEC) and the European Atomic Energy Community (EURATOM). January 14, 1962: The member states agree on a Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). January 14, 1963: French President Charles de Gaulle vetoes Britain’s entry into the EEC. Negotiations with Denmark and Ireland are also interrupted. January 28, 1966: The “Luxembourg

Compromise” gives states a veto power on decisive issues, and de Gaulle ends his “empty chair policy.” July 1, 1967: Merger of EEC, EURATOM and ECSC: a European Council and Commission replace the three organs. December 5, 1978: The European Monetary System (EMS) is agreed upon. June 7, 1979: First direct elections of the European Parliament.

N

ine countries are hoping to join the European Union. Some are close to membership, while others have a long road ahead.

March 31, 2003: The EU replaces NATO peacekeeping forces in Macedonia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, taking on such operations for the first time. October 29, 2004: A draft Constitution for Europe is signed. It never passes into law. May 29, 2005 and June 1, 2005: French and Dutch citizens reject the draft constitution in referendums.

November 9, 1989: Fall of Berlin Wall. East and West Germany are formally united on October 3, 1990.

April 23, 2010: Greece becomes the first eurozone member to request a bailout, as a debt crisis which will severely test relations between member states engulfs the monetary union.

December 15, 1990: Member states agree to create an Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) and a political union. Febrary 7, 1992: The founding EMU treaty is signed in Maastricht by the 12 members of the EEC. March 26, 1995: The Schengen Treaty removes border controls – initially between Belgium, Germany, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal

ethnic conflict and training local security personnel. The EU’s executive sees substantial shortcomings in the justice sector, and demands efforts to tackle corruption and organized crime.

Croatia:

Albania:

Must tackle issues such as organized crime, corruption and the rule of law, to formally become an EU accession candidate.

Set to become the EU’s 28th member state in July 2013, and already has observer status. But 10 key measures are still demanded, including privatisation measures and judicial reforms.

Bosnia and Herzegovina:

Iceland:

A potential candidate, which still hosts EU soldiers, tasked with preventing

January 1, 2002: Introduction of euro notes and coins in 13 member states.

July 1, 1987: The Single European Act (SEA) for the integration of the internal market comes into force.

EU Membership Hopefuls { Dieter Ebeling, Helen Maguire / Brussels / DPA }

and Spain.

Applied for EU membership in 2009, after decades of economic cooperation.

October 9, 2012: The 17-member eurozone officially launches its permanent bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism, worth 700 billion euros (913 billion dollars). October 12, 2012: The European Union wins the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize for its “advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights.”u Meets most EU democratic standards, but lags in financial services, food safety and free movement of capital. Issues include its fisheries industry, and compensation for British and Dutch investors hit by Iceland’s bank collapse.

Kosovo:

Five EU member states do not recognize the independence of the former Serbian breakaway province – making EU membership a distant prospect. Brussels has proposed steps towards a stabilization and association agreement, once certain conditions are met.

Macedonia (former Republic of Yugoslav):

Candidate country since 2005, but Greece has blocked the start of negotiations due to conflict over the country’s name, which it shares with a Greek region. A high-level accession dialogue with Skopje began in March.

Montenegro:

Official candidate, whose negotiations began in June. The country has made good progress in some areas, but lags in judicial reforms, while also tainted by organized crime and high corruption.

Serbia:

Official candidate since March, after previous efforts were hampered by a lack of cooperation with United Nations war crimes investigations. Accession talks have not yet begun. Relations with Kosovo—whose independence Serbia does not recognize—is straining ties with the EU, which calls for fresh impetus in reforms.

Turkey:

Applied for membership in 1987; negotiations began in 2005, but have reached an impasse. Thirteen out of 85 negotiation chapters are open, but only one has been completed. Eight chapters are blocked by Turkey’s stance on EU member Cyprus. Turkey has also been told to improve its rule of law and protection of minorities. But the country is also an important economic and geopolitical ally. u

G lobal


19-25 October 2012

G lobal 23

Charlie Brown’s Comeback { Los Angeles / DPA }

I

conic American cartoon character Charlie Brown is making a big screen comeback after 32 years.   The ‘lovable loser’ will be joined by the rest of the Peanuts gang in a 20th Century Fox movie in 2015, the studio announced,

in conjunction with the heirs of cartoonist Charles Schultz – the legendary creator of the popular newspaper comic strip. The film will be co-written by Schultz’s son, Craig Schultz, together with his son, Bryan Schultz. It will be directed by Steve Martino, who helmed the 2008 hit, Horton Hears a Who!,

and this year’s blockbuster, Ice Age: Continental Drift.Charlie Brown last appeared on screen in the 1980s Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown (and Don’t Come Back). u

1. Can I have a glass of water? - Qing Wo Yao Yi Bei Shui


Qing – ch (as in chhilka, ‘peel’ in English)+ing Wo – that in Hindi Yao – ya+sound of the alphabet O Yi – sound of the alphabet E Bei – p(sound of the alphabet p, in Hindi)+sound of the alphabet A, in English Shui – as in shoe+sound of the alphabet A, in English 2. Please clear the table. - Qing Dasao Zhuozi
 Dasao – Ta (as in tara, ‘star’ in English)+sa+ sound of the alphabet O Zhuozi – chu (as in chhup, ‘quiet’ in Hindi)+sound of the alphabet O+sound of half d (as in darwaza, ‘door’ in Hindi)+Z (as in zameen, ‘land’ in Hindi)

3. Can I have some tea? - Qing Yao Yi Bei Cha
 Qing – ch (as in chhilka, ‘peel’ in English)+ing Wo – that in Hindi Yao – ya+sound of the alphabet O Yi – sound of the alphabet E Bei – p (sound of the alphabet p, in Hindi)+ sound of the alphabet A, in English Cha – cha, as in chhaya, ‘shadow’ in English By Gautam Arora For Chinese Classes, log on to: www.chinesedelhi.co.in


24

19-25 October 2012

G -scape

Nava Durga - Nine Forms of Durga Ma

Asha pandey

PRATIPAD

DWITIYA

TRITIYA

Shailputri

Brahmachaarini

Chandraghanta

CHATURTHI

PANCHAMI

SHASHTI

Kushmanda

Skandamaata

Katyaayani

SAPTAMI

ASHTAMI

NAVAMI

Kaalraatri

Mahaagauri

Siddhidaatri

Friday Gurgaon 19-25 Oct, 2012  

Friday Gurgaon 19-25 Oct, 2012

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