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25 April-1 May 2014

Vol. 3 No. 36  Pages 24  ` 10

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

Building is the Design


{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon


hen a team of differently-abled cricketers from Pakistan left the Delhi Airport and entered Gurgaon through the Expressway, they were mesmerised by the glass and chrome high-rises that abut the National Highway and give an impression of a modern city with all the trappings of globalisation. One of the cricketers also exclaimed that when they entered the Millennium City they felt as if they

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon


fter failing to get any relief from the Town and Country Planning (TCP) Department , HUDA and the District Administration, the residents of Mayfield Gardens have pegged their hopes on the office of the Haryana Lokayukta, who in a sudden move decided to visit the Colony along with concerned officials, to take stock of the actual conditions. Justice Pritam Pal, who is the Lokayukta of Haryana, decided to inspect the Colony after repeated complaints filed by Sheetal Welfare Association, led by Commander Dharamvir Yadav, failed to get any resolution from either the authorities or the builders. While the builders have failed to deliver on their promise of completing the infrastructure projects that have been languishing in Mayfield Gardens for the last two decades, their licences

were entering Hong Kong or a Singapore. Anyone coming into the City through the NH8 believes that the template of globalisation has finally been completed, with a majority of the buildings also projecting big corporate identities. However, a visit to ‘old’ Gurgaon, and even other parts of the City, exposes the huge disparity in even the design, structure and architecture within the same City. Gurgaon’s landscape is a combination of HUDA's Chandigarh-oriented vision, a market driven approach adopted by multiple

builders with a focus on FAR, and an urbanism that is rooted in villages transformed into rurban ghettos. Despite this City witnessing major real estate development in the last two decades fuelled by the lack of space in Delhi and the increasing migration of corporates, it is surprising that no unique design or architectural philosophy has evolved or that can be identified with the Cyber Hub that the City has become. It’s just labelled ‘Millennium’; and your guess is as good as ours on what that means – and why?

Experts say that most of the good work is happening in isolation, in a disconnected manner with the surroundings or even the topology. With City authorities lacking any direction - except showing great enthusiasm is pushing the Real Estate agenda - and many developers looking to just maximise their profits by playing around with FAR and selling maximum FSI, there is little hope for Gurgaon to emerge as a holistic modern city. Rupinder Singh, Dean, Sushant School of Architecture, Gurgaon says that design-wise this City is both a release from,

The Lokayukta Steps In were restored by TCP (after being revoked earlier). The Haryana Lokayukta visited Mayfield Gardens on April 19 to carry out an on-the-spot assessment of the Colony and to investigate the complaint filed by the RWA. Commander Yadav tells Friday Gurgaon that the Lokayukta has directed the HUDA Chief PC Meena to investigate the reasons that led to the failure of the holistic development of this Colony. Under the provisions of Section 14 of the Haryana Lokayukta Act 2002, the Lokayukta also asked Meena to find a workable solution, so that the problems being faced by the residents of the area are resolved. He was also asked to submit a report within

15 days to the Lokayukta’s office, which will decide the future course of action. Mayfield Gardens residents, who have been suffering due to poor water, power and sewerage infrastructure since the inception of the Colony, assert that the move of the Lokayukta to visit the Colony has sent a great message of hope, and they see a resolution of their problems in the next few months. Commander Dharamvir alleges that despite the above Project being

launched in 1994, the developers have failed to provide even basic amenities like electricity, drinking water, roads, sewerage, drainage disposal and street lights - thus virtually forcing the residents to live in slum-like conditions. Yadav says that the major violation in Mayfield Gardens is the complete disregard of the Service Plan Estimate, which every builder has to give - detailing the infrastructure and scope of work. Based on this Plan, bank guarantees are furnished and all works in a colony are to be executed as per this Service Plan. “In the case of this Colony, most of the work has been grossly deficient and has deviated from the Plan. When these deficiencies were reported to Director TCP, he issued no-

and a reaction to, the controlled and socialistic experiment that had come into vogue in Delhi. “In the Capital the development and growth has been very controlled, while Gurgaon in contrast is a very capitalistic market-driven experience - where we have witnessed another extreme. There is a ‘free-for-all’ here; if you have the resources and connections, you can build whatever you want,” says Singh. He points out that the HUDA sectors were developed on the lines of Chandigarh, but they have not Contd on p 7 

tices to the builders, who however never complied with the directions - as there seems to be complicity,” asserts Yadav. On 30th May, 2011 after failing to get any relief from all concerned departments, the Sheetla RWA had complained to the Lokayukta Haryana. They specifically mentioned that Director General (DG) T.C. Gupta had failed to take action against the builders and misused his official position to favour the builders. During the course of the hearings, the DG, TCP, allegedly realising that he could be cornered by the Lokayukta, decided to cancel all the licences of the developments in the Mayfield Gardens project. Consequently, the HUDA Administrator was made the Chairman of a committee and asked to work out the completion of the deficient work. Yadav says that the work was to be done by the government, by recovering the cost from the builders - by auctioning the unsold land and plots, for which directions were also issued to the Deputy Contd on p 9 


25 April -1 May 2014

RNI No. HARENG/2011/39319 Postal Regn. No. GRG/35/2012-2014, VOL.–3 No.–36  25 April-1 May 2014


Atul Sobti

Sr. Correspondents: Abhishek Behl Shilpy Arora Sr. Photographer:

Prakhar Pandey

Sr. Designer:

Amit Singh

Circulation Execs.:

Sunil Yadav Manish Yadav

Sr. Exec Marketing:

Vikalp Panwar


The Making of an Officer

The general perception of an Army Officer, to most civilians, is what is shown in Hindi movies or on Television. They think that he is always in uniform, has a walrus moustache, carries a gun (and a whisky bottle) – and generally enjoys life. He seems to have no hassles. The truth is that an Army Officer is a disciplined soldier, simple in habits and trained to follow orders. He is capable of making himself and his troops comfortable in the worst of places, fights loneliness often and yet has be ready to sacrifice his life - disregarding the thought of his family and their life after him. Duty is sacred for him. So what goes into the making of a dedicated and sincere soldier, especially in the face of the pomp & glitter of civil life all around him; a civilian’s life that has lesser working hours and better money, and yet seems riddled with scams and corruption?

...P 10-11

Dy. Manager A/cs & Admin:

Shiv Shankar Jha

Special Feature... Raahgiri in Palam Vihar

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:

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


Spritual... Let your Tears flow

After months of waiting, Raahgiri Day finally arrived at Palam Vihar (across the National Highway), much to the delight of residents – who could now soak in the Raahgiri experience nearer home. At 6am itself there are at least 2,000 people gathered at Ansal Plaza, which is likely to remain the focal point.

Last week I lost my father-in-law. He was 87 and hale and hearty to the end - attending to his daily chores and business with zeal and zest. It started with a stomach infection and all was over within six days. The family members mourned his departure and some of them wept bitterly. One of his daughters in law was inconsolable, as she had spent many years looking after him with great concern and care.

Wellness... Phalsa Kool

Bon Vivant... Dancing Shiva

As the summer temperatures soar, the appearance of dark purple berries proudly displayed by streetside vendors is a welcome sight. In the northern plains of the Indian subcontinent as well as in neighbouring South East Asian countries, this heralds the appearance of this enticing ‘Phalsa’ fruit. That the seasonal availability is short, and that it cannot be preserved easily, makes this Fruit an even more sought-after seasonal delicacy. ...P 18

Fritjof Capra, an American physicist of Austrian origin, authored ‘The Tao Of Physics’ in 1975 and brought to light the concept of creation and destruction as the essence of inorganic matter - while drawing a very interesting comparison with Lord Shiva’s Dance, which he termed as a dance of ‘subatomic matter’. Capra also explained the relationship between Shiva’s dance and science

...P 12-13

Friday Gurgaon (Weekly) edited,

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.

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Builder booked............................................................P 9 Activities/Events/Exhibitions/ Seminars.......P 14-15 Comment

Editorial.......................................................................P 16 Global

Cut-outs and See-throughs...............................P21-23

25 April -1 May 2014

Dulari Dhamaal: Play Date: April 26 & 27 Time: 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm  7:45 PM to 9:45 PM \ Venue: Epicentre, Sector 44, Gurgaon Directed by: Alok Ulfat
Produced by Behroopiya Entertainers and Avikal Theatre Company, Dulari Dhamaal is the story of Dulari Bai, the last eligible maiden of the village. All the single men race with each other to win Dulari’s affections and this leads to a sequence of hilarious events. Kathak Performance Date: April 25 Time: 7 pm Venue: Epicentre, Sector 44 Kathak Recital by Anita Agarwal and disciples, presented in collaboration with Hare Krishna Kala Kendra. Srijan Art Exhibition Date: Till April 27 Venue: Galaxy Hotel, Sector 15 Attend an Art Exhibition showcasing paintings, sculptures and photography. The famous artists, Sonali Chakravorty and Varsha Mathur, will showcase some of their excellent Art pieces. Orientations - Solo Show Date: April 25 to May 3 Time: 10 am to 6 pm Venue: Alliance Francaise, Building No. S - 24 / 8, DLF City Phase 3 Alliance Francaise is hosting a solo Art Exhibition of the Art works and printmaking of French Artist, Annabel C. Schenck. On the opening day the Artist will offer a live digital drawing performance. Annabel is a visual Artist whose stunning works have been displayed at various venues globally. A visiting Fellow at Visva Bharati University, her time is divided between India and France. This Exhibition will be showcasing her latest body of work.

An Arty Affair Date: Till April 26 Time: 11 am to 7 pm Venue: The Gallery, MG Mall, Studio No. 322, Second Floor, 13, Mehrauli Gurgaon Road TAD Arts presents an exhilarating Art Exhibition by young and upcoming artists, who have explored their visual expressions through vibrant colours on the canvas. Curated especially for this Exhibition, the oeuvres d’Art  on display are from: Aanchal Wazir, Tuttu M Tomy, Mousumi Biswas, Saptrishi Naskar, Anuj Kumar Poddar, Ramesh Kumar, Suchit Sahini, Amar Sultan, Kamar Alam, Shubhra Das, Anand Panchal, Hindol Brahmbhatt and others.

Cycle Race Manger-Damdama-Manger Duathlon Date: April 27 Time: 5 am Venue: Gurgaon-Faridabad Expressway, Toll Plaza Get your MTBs and legs ready for some good challenging X Country 21K Trail MTB Racing and 10 K Trail Running in jungle surroundings. Expect to run alongside camels, neelgais (blue bulls), wild hare, peacocks and of course gais (cows)! What’s included in the Run - water, bananas, medical support, chest bibs, Timing certificates, glucose biscuits, medals and energy drinks. The Start point is 1Km after the Toll Plaza on the GurgaonFaridabad Road (if coming from Gurgaon) - on the right side, next to the garbage

You will cycle 11km from the mouth of the Trail to Manger Ashram, park your cycles there and run 4 Kms down to Damdama Resort; then go around Damdama Lake and run 4 kms back up to Manger Ashram, pick up your cycles and ride back to where you had started. Rules of the Game : bring your own cycles; no spot registrations; helmets are compulsory for the cycling segment; there is no transition time, and your timers will start as soon as you start to cycle; there would be batch starts.

C oming U p


Nritya Malika 2014 Date: April 26 Time: 5.30 am to 9.30 am Venue: Dream Yoga & Dance Institute, Sector 7 Extension Annual fiesta of DYDI...participation by 350 students (2 years to 60 years) Theme - Women Empowerment Entry through cards only

Fashion Rendezvous SS 14 Date: April 27 to 29 Time: 6pm Venue: Radisson Blu Fashion Rendezvous SS 14 is a platform that will promote emerging fashion designers and upcoming models in the Fashion industry.

Krackerjack Karnival - Kids' Festival Date: April 26 & 27 Time: 10 am to 7pm Venue: Epicentre, Sector 44 The Krackerjack Karnival is a Mega Expo cum Festival catering purely to children and their needs. This two-day, fun-filled Festival is packed with fantastic exhibits, interactive activities, entertainment and the latest products & services for children.

Contemporary Collection Art Alive Gallery is presenting a Collection of works by artists from different generations. The Show encompass thoughts and practices of twenty artists, whose style and subject matter ranges from the figurative to abstract, imaginative to realistic and from futuristic to traditional. Eminent artists like Manu Parekh, Raghu Rai, Paresh Maity, V Ramesh, Chintan Upadhyay, Thukral & Tagra, G R Iranna, Anita Dube & S Harsha Vardhana are complemented by young artists like Dileep Sharma, Sudhanshu Sutar, Sharmi Chowdhury, Suraj Kumar Kashi, Siddharth Pansari, Date: On view till May 31 Timings: Monday to Saturday, 11 am to 7 pm Venue: Art Alive Gallery, No.120, Sector-44


25 April-1 May 2014

H appenings

Learning Fashion Lisaa School of Design organised a three days Open Event in their campus to showcase the talent and work of their students to the world. The Exhibition featured work mainly from three sections - Fashion and Textile, Interior and Graphic Designing. "The theme was 'Learning the fashion way' - in which the students have to present designs depicting elegance, innovation and creativity," said Ms. Priyanka, Director.

Baisakhi Network


ore than a 100 ladies, decked up in Punjabi themed Phulkaris, Patialas, Parandis and Juttis, danced non-stop for 3 hours at Gurgaon Network's Balle Balle Lo Aayi Baisakhi Bash. The highlight was a live 'dhol' - mixing Punjabi beats with the DJ and also the choreographers from Razzel. There was a Parandi tying service and a mehendiwala, to add that extra touch. 
"We always organise some fun concept events for our group members. Each lady got a kallirien as a giveaway, just to make her feel as special as a bride," said Smriti Chhabra and Jyoti Narang, the organisers and founders of Gurgaon Network. There were also lots of lucky draws wherein ladies won some interesting prizes and each lady was presented a goodie potli with lots of vouchers and give-aways.

‘Why Waste your Waste’


he Campaign is a citizen’s outreach initiative against reckless disposal of waste materials and the rising need for sustainable waste management. To build an ideal community towards zero waste compounds, DLF5 hosted a constructive dialogue session among all the key stakeholders - including citizen groups. Aakash Ohri, Executive Director – DLF Home Developers Ltd., said, "Gurgaon is facing a sanitation crisis in the absence of an adequate waste disposal system. The need of the hour is to create awareness around a decentralised waste management system. DLF5 is committed to an ecologically sustainable development model and believes in adopting the best practices and technologies in this regard.”

Culture-rich Odisha College Androids


TM University Google Student’s Club, in association with Wegilant SINE IIT, Mumbai, organised a two-day Inter College Android Application Development Workshop. Wegilant SINE IIT is an initiative of IIT Bombay students and IIM Alumni, led by IITian Toshendra Sharma and a team of IT Security specialists.The Workshop was mentored by Kapil Mehta, a Google-Certified Android Developer and Tester. Over 70 students from colleges and universities across NCR particiated. Competition, Ria Gupta, a 2nd Year student of  ITM University, was the Winner and received vouchers worth Rs 6000/-. The Second and Third positions were bagged by Dhruv Sharma of Maharaja Surajmal College and Gourav Kumar of ITM University, respectively.

Odisha and its rich cultural heritage of dances and songs was showcased recently at a two-hour programme, 'Odia Fest 2014, organised by the Gurgaon Odia Samaj. An Odissi classical dance, the famous Gotipua Dance and Sambalpuri Folk Dance performances were presented by the Patitapawan Kala Niketan. RN Nayak (CMD, Power Grid Corporation) was the Chief Guest and internationally acclaimed Odia sculptor Tutu Pattnaik was the Guest of Honour.

25 April-1 May 2014

H appenings


Feeling for Him


n Good Friday a very moving reenactment of Christ’s suffering was performed by the youth of the Church of Immaculate Conception at Kanhei, over a 2 km route. The Enactment traced the last events of Christ’s life. Those gathered for the Service accompanied the moving stage, in deep prayer and meditation. The tableau, complete with shouting soldiers, cracking whips and cries from the crowd surging around the wounded Christ, also provided a mesmerising spectacle for the local residents.

Dr.Ramakant & Medical Second Opinion


edical Second Opinion (MSO), a Healthcare portal,celebrated the success of world renowned Heart Surgeon, Dr.Ramakant Panda - who recently established a world record feat. MSO's trademark service of Connected OPD also brings doctors to your cities for face-to-face consultations. Sachin Chaudhary is the Founder and CEO of Medical Second Opinion.

Heart-friendly Cooking at arttid’nox C

hef Kandla Nijhowne, Runner-up at MasterChef 1 took a Cookery Workshop at arttd’inox, Defence Colony. She gave Live demonstration of heart-friendly recipes to the guests who were esteemed (women) members of Rotary Club, Lion’s Club and Marwari Sabha. Only exercising isn't sufficient to maintain a healthy heart - one needs to eat the right food too! Keeping this in mind, ANISA Media Ventures organised a Heart-Friendly Cooking Workshop at arttid’nox. Chef Kandla NIjhowne demonstrated interesting recipes - such as Eggless Cake made with Flax seeds (rich in Omega 3), a Designer Watermelon Basket (filled also with Strawberries, Melons and Mangoes) and a heart-friendly Salad with a Catalane-style Dressing. “We live in the South Asia Region, which has the highest incidence of death by heart attack. About 25% of the deaths in the age group 25- 69 years occur because of heart diseases. In urban

areas, 32.8% deaths occur because of heart ailments - and 22.8% in rural areas. It is therefore important for everyone – be it a child, an elderly or an adult – to consume something heart-friendly every day. My recipes include salads, fruits and cakes, which can easily be made at home and are rich in fibre content,” said Chef Kandla Nijhowne.  “The Watermelon Basket was something every housewife would like to make at home. It is a sure shot way to impress your husband and in-laws,” smiled Nidhi, a member of Rotary Club. “The Workshop was very informative. Chef Kandla not only showcased good cooking, but also highlighted the need to have food rich in protein and fibre,” said Seema, an active member of Lion’s Club. For Anshu Madhok, a member of Rotary Club, the most interesting part was the venue! “I think arttid’nox offers one of the most contemporary modular kitchens. It was a treat to watch my favourite chef (Kandla Nijhowne) cook in a Designer Kitchen,

while using the beautiful Pink Bloom Kitchen Range, a modular stainless steel and Tattva set - an award-winning design of arttid’nox,” said Anshu. Company: arttd’inox, a part of the O.P. Jindal group, which was set up in 1970 by the Steel Visionary Mr. O.P. Jindal. JSL Lifestyle Limited is a subsidiary of Jindal Stainless Limited, and is an ISO:9001 & ISO:14001 company. The flagship company has a global presence and is an INR 550 Billion Conglomerate. Started by the visionary Ms. Deepikaa Jindal, arttd’inox in the past decade has brought Stainless Steel into the luxury and lifestyle circuit of the country. Brand: arttd’inox is a decade-old brand from the House of Jindal Stainless. It brought the concept of luxury stainless steel products to India, developing the expertise of fusing wood, ceramic, glass, silicon and semi-precious stone with the metal. The product categories

encompass the entire houseware segment - starting from exclusive uber luxurious stainless steel modular kitchens to a bar range, beverage range, cookware, home décor and tableware accessories. With a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Haryana and an in-house Design Studio having some of the most brilliant design minds, arttid'nox brings avant garde designs to the table.  Arttd’inox also takes pride in having some of the top design awards - like the Idesign and Edida Awards under its belt. Consumer touch-points are provided through exclusive outlets in Delhi, Gurgaon, Mumbai and more than 550 high-end crockery outlets pan India. Each of the retail stores is designed by
top-end retail designers and interiors designers. The Mumbai store is the largest, offering around 8000 sqft space, and is designed by Pinakin Patel. The Store has a 24 feet Gallery for Art display and has a look of space
and expanse, where one can bathe in luxurious ambience. Chef
Kandla Nijhowne was an amateur cook, who worked her way up to be amongst the top five (semifinalists) in Masterchef India 1. Greatly admired by Akshay Kumar, she amazed the judges with her baking skills. Maharaja Shri Arvindji of Udaipur, declared Kandla's dish the top-scorer amongst many in the Rajasthan Challenge. Masterchef Season-2 saw her return to the small screen, to throw a cooking challenge to the top 5 contestants of that season.


25 April-1 May 2014


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 A Khap Panchayat in Hisar Dist. allows marriage of couples living in the 42 villages within its jurisdiction (except same village, and gotra).  High Court asks for the status of the colony wise development in the City, by May 20th. – to determine how soon MCG can take over. This is in response to a petition of Gurgaon Citizen Council. Haryana CM stops all increases in toll rates, and rolls back some, in response to agitations across the State. The Top 50 students from the State will get free IIT JEE Coaching for 2 years – based on results of an Entrance Test. The State Congress expels 16 Party members – including MP Rao Inderjit Singh and 2 MLAs. The need for a repoll in (parts of) Mewat, due to alleged rigging, will be decided soon. A 6th. FIR is filed against Minster Sukhbir Kataria and others, in the ‘bogus votes’ case – they have now been summoned for the hearings. As per the State SPAT result (for students mainly in the age group 8 to 14), only 23 from Gurgaon have made it to the final list – out of almost 5,000 in the State. The Principal Secretary, Urban Local Bodies, Haryana, Raghavendra Rao, on a visit to the City, asks for the upgradation of the Sewage Treatment Plant at Dhanwapur and for the setting up of a Malba Treatment Plant urgently. The Public Health Dept. tests water in many places in ‘old’ Gurgaon and finds 10 out of 12 samples contaminated - unfit to drink; stolen MCG water pipes are recovered – it’s a scam that was going on for a long time; 7 to 8 hour power cuts have started – and Summer has yet to set in! Haryana Lokayukta Justice Pritam Pal (ex-Chief Justice of the Punjab & Haryana High Court) inspects Mayfield Gardens, and asks for a report from the Administration within 2 weeks. The RWA and residents have been complaining for long about lack of many basic services and facilities.

had hit a rickshaw earlier.  A 21-year-old BBA girl student is killed by her family, for ‘honour’ – her friend alleges.  A woman is run over by a speeding water tanker near Sikanderpur Metro Station; a 6-year-old boy riding in a car dies in an accident; a 12-year-old, riding with others in an auto, is killed when a trailer hits the auto and it overturns; a person is killed in an accident on the e-way – a car hits his bike; a truck crushes a 42-year-old on a bike, near Kadipur.  An ex-colleague is booked for abetment to suicide of a woman who hanged herself in DLF III and left a suicide note; a man is held for allegedly hanging his wife - his 5-year-old son confirms this, by accusing father.  A Delhi woman accuses her 2 former colleagues of rape; a woman alleges rape after a 4 year live-in relationship turns sour; a woman in Rajendra Park alleges that she was kidnapped and raped – 3 are arrested; a policeman is held after barging into a house in a village and trying to rape a woman; a bride accuses her father of molestation, in Badshahpur; a woman alleges molestation in a court – a case is filed.  Sex rackets are busted in a PG in Chakarpur and a spa centre in a mall on MG Road.

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 A doctor working in Medanta, and his 3½-year-old daughter (on her first day to school), are killed by a speeding bus outside Rail Vihar (opposite Sadar Police Station and near Shankar Chowk). The bus

Dundahera market, due to a short circuit – the fire is doused after 2 ½ hours.  9 are booked for a Rs 40 lakhs (Rajasthan) property fraud on a Delhi businessman; a cancelled plot is fraudulently sold and a person duped of Rs 12 lakhs.  An FIR is lodged against 2 people, for duping many youth with fake foreign job offers.  A man is duped of Rs 44,000 outside an ATM in Ram Nagar Colony.

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 The Excise Dept. is set to crack down on ‘ahatas’ (legal drinking places near liquor vends) that are flouting norms – there are 172 in the City. Traffic Police has proposed a plan to try and decongest traffic between Toll Plaza and Shankar Chowk. ‘Illegal’ bus queue shelters in New Colony are razed. Rosewood City residents file FIR against builder, for ‘wrong’ development and intimidation. Demolitions take place in the restricted area near the Ammunition Depot. Circle rates in the City have been increased by an average of 10% - they are still much lower than ‘market rates’. A lot of wheat lying in mandis in the open has got wet and rotted, due to unseasonal rains. 2 new MCG Citizen Facilitation Centres are proposed to be opened in Sectors 39 and 56. A Police Booth is set up at IFFCO Chowk. MCG and HUDA may jointly shift offices to Technology Park, Infocity (Sector 34) soon. Gurgaon Fashion week is cancelled; organisers are accused and questioned. City Tau now being used for taxation (VAT collection and deposit campaign). Easter and Earth Day are celebrated this past week.

 A chef in the Merchant Navy  (resident of Gurgaon) goes missing  in Myanmar; 2 children (brothers) go missing from an orphanage in  Harsaru Village; a 17-year-old girl is kidnapped from Islampur Village.  Auto drivers thrash a local politician; 2 are arrested and jailed.  The driver of a Gurgaon-based CA is stabbed multiple times in Vasant Kunj (Delhi), and the car is stolen. A Delhi Police team is thrashed and Friday Gurgaon is also available at: held hostage in Khod (near Pataudi). Local police intervene; a traffic Indian Oil Petrol Pump (Opp. Neelkanth Hospital, M.G. Road) policeman is thrashed near Sector 5. Paritosh Book Stall (Sikanderpur Metro Station) 2 wanted gangsters are arrested. C.S.P. - Kanchan (Opp. Vyapar Kendra - C Block Sushant Lok-1) An ASI is suspended for taking cash and working with a gangster. C.S.P. - Sector-14 Market (Near Mother Dairy) A leopard is found dead on the ITC Deepak Book Stand (Bus Stand) Classic Golf Course, just outside Nagpal News Agency (Bus Stand) Gurgaon.

C.S.P. - Madhav (New Railway Road)

 A fire breaks out in a mall in a

Jain Book Stall (New Railway Road) Rojgar Point Book Stall (New Railway Road) Karan Book Stall (Railway Station)

Watch and listen to

'Hai Ye Gurgaon Meri Jaan' a ballad on Gurgaon, based on the legendary song... 'Ye hai Bombay Meri Jaan'. OR View it at the FG Facebook page at


25 April -1 May 2014

Building is the Design  Contd from p 1 evolved, because this is a different city and a different location. A majority of the architects that Friday Gurgaon spoke to were of the opinion that the architecture and design here is primarily a function of market forces, which want the buildings to cater to the immediate needs and demands of business – and are not interested in building any legacies. Glass and chrome buildings have become popular because they can be built a lot faster, and cater well to the needs of the IT and IT Enabled Services industry. Functional buildings, offering basic structures and facilities, have sprung up all across the City. The trend that was started by DLF (for GE) has matured into Cyber City and Cyber Hub - and a similar trend can be observed across MG Road, Golf Course Road, Sohna Road and along the National Highway. Huge towers enclosed with glass can be seen shimmering in the bright sun. Thomas Oommen, Assistant Professor at Sushant School of Art and Architecture opines that Gurgaon is an urban laboratory of extremes, and needs to be observed closely. In his view the assertions that Gurgaon is an example of crony capitalism and corrupt land grabs, needs to be balanced by the fact that it has also emerged as an economic powerhouse and generates jobs for a large local and migrant population. For him, what makes Gurgaon interesting is the absolute impossibility to categorise the City - as it is the product of the free play of ‘wild west capitalism’ and ‘bureaucratic absenteeism’! “Gurgaon is a diagram of pure, unadulterated forces at play in Indian urbanism, without any notion or intention of control. And this alone is reason enough for us to abandon our usual lens of critique”, asserts Oommen. When asked about the uniqueness of Gurgaon's flux and the chaos that it represents, he says that Gurgaon can be a place for designers to act freely and without burden on both speculative and utopian projects; and to act on imprecise hunches while experimenting with hedonistic as well as sustainable futures. While Gurgaon may offer much flexibility to a designer, what about the existing City, with its lack of public spaces, encroachment of greenery and no playgrounds to speak of ? The architects put the blame on byelaws and the existing regula-

tions, which force a particular type of construction. Rupinder Singh says that another characteristic of Gurgaon's design sense is that it is completely driven by corporate values, flashy sensibility and the yearning for ‘making it global’ - without having the basics of a New York or Chicago. “In the 1980s Chicago was even worse, with total urban chaos - but it was brought back from the brink by good urban design and planning. Right now Gurgaon is extending itself to the periphery and the only goal is to build denser and higher,” says Singh. This uncontrolled expansion, with little regard to planning, will ruin the land, the agriculture, the Aravallis, and the natural resources like ground water and air, he warns. What confounds experts like Singh is that while half of the land in existing Gurgaon is lying vacant, and even basic facilities in these areas are insufficient, what is the tearing hurry to push outwards to the peripheries? It’s just a Real Estate speculative ride. Even more surprising is that more than half of the apartments in the big residential towers, or the establishment spaces in malls or the office spaces in commercial buildings are also lying unoccupied. Nipesh Narainan, an architect and scholar, opines, “To develop a sustainable template, the government needs to have flexible byelaws, provide incentives to developers to build in an ecofriendly manner, and ensure that the corporates develop a long term interest and stake in Gurgaon.” He also points to the different spatial and social contradictions between the two Gurgaons - the old and the new. A study conducted by him and his students at Sushant School of Architecture, sees ‘new’ Gurgaon as a hub in the globally networked command and control chain of MNCs. It offers and spurs a slew of middle class professional and working class jobs, spearheading Gurgaon’s economic and urban growth. There is a spatial logic method to the seeming madness of global corporate capital-

ism. Rows of glass towers and giant footprints imprinted into the dusty Gurgaon plain might defy good urbanism, but they do seem to serve their clientele very well - in terms of space, cost and image. Though the in-between spaces are seemingly hostile to people, the recurring occurrences of associated phenomena - like opulent malls and residential towers - betray the desires of the globallynetworked Indian. The spatial organisation and design of this (‘old’) part of the City shows the interplay between different socio-economic and political forces – of inherited traditions versus modern practices. Gurgaon-based architect Abhimaniyu Bhatia also says that the architecture and design of buildings here is purely market and sales oriented, and therefore the ambition for constructing taller and taller buildings (the safety aspect and planning for disasters does not obviously find much mention or action). He opines that the ever-increasing FAR in the City, at the cost of greenery and the environment, would result in Gurgaon becoming a concrete city dependent on 24x7 diesel gensets and air-conditioning. As a way forward, Bhatia calls for building more open spaces in the City, focusing on markets, which have traditionally been the social spaces for Indians; and more parks and playgrounds, to ensure that people meet each other, interact, and develop a common identity. Singh, Dean of Sushant School, opines that efforts should be made to ensure that mistakes that happened in the present Gurgaon are not repeated in the extensions. The villages need to be integrated into the planning process, which should give rise to a unique design template for this newer Gurgaon (GII as FG calls it). The young architects are also of the opinion that there is need to look specifically into the role played by urban villages in absorbing the huge service class and migrant population, which is powering the City's industry and business (and increasingly also working in homes). The mixed land use pattern of Gurgaon’s urban villages, they believe, has served the City well. Another major issue that needs to be looked is the lack of public transport infrastructure and services, which will impact the landscape and location of offices and establishments. Poor planning will also lead to ‘reactionary developments’ - like the ‘DLF-HUDA Freeway’, which is being built from the National Highway upto Sector

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“Magical Holidays” invites you to join as a Holiday Consultant and build a sizable income working Flexi Hours from the comfort of your home or office. Call us at: + 91 9871897274 or email us your details: 56 on an already decent sector road. Oommen says this is a sure recipe for disaster. “This Freeway is not going solve any problem but will divide the City further into blocks, as has been done by the Expressway - which has facilitated the severing of ties between ‘old’ and ‘new’ Gurgaon and the respective residents,” he says. Prof Singh opines that such experiments were also in vogue in America and Europe, but are now being dismantled, as these have proved to be not very useful. The experts also suggest that it is a challenge to design appropriate and harmonious public spaces and structures in a city whose residents are so obsessed with their private space. The last words in this discussion surely should be-

long to Oommen, who says that Gurgaon is not unplanned but it has a ‘non-plan’ - and this is not a mindless phenomenon or a lazy design. In his opinion, planning has been kept at a minimum in order to leave all possibilities open. “Gurgaon is not about the future. It is about hurtling forward at break neck speeds, wherever the current moment may lead; of changing lanes as abruptly as contingencies arise; and of producing and changing into ever hybrid forms. That is why the buildings of Gurgaon seem to be eerily ‘uniform’ and ‘without character’, even while displaying fantastic forms,” he states. He reiterates that, in Gurgaon, ‘nonplan’ in the design strategy! u

08 { Prabha Prabhakar Bhardwaj}

orld Heritage Day, a special day dedicated to the built, cultural and natural heritage, is celebrated on 18th April every year. The aim is to raise awareness about the world’s diversity and to attract attention to its vulnerability. World Heritage is a shared asset of the human civilisation, and preserving and protecting it from loss is a collective responsibility of all communities. Educating the youth about our Global Heritage is a prime motivation on this Day. Dronah Foundation was established on March 21, 2012 by Development Research Organisation for Nature, Arts and Heritage (DRONAH), an NGO with its headquarters in Gurgaon. DRONAH initiated the process of recognition of the Hill Forts of Rajasthan in the World Heritage Sites and achieved its goal in 2013. The Foundation carries out charitable and not-for-profit activities in the field of built heritage, community and environment. Its associated professionals from various disciplines promote social and cultural activities in their individual fields and recognise the need for mutual interaction with various other groups. To commemorate the 31st Anniversary of World Heritage Day (WHD) and the 21st Anniversary of Qutub Minar's joining the Elite Club of World Heritage Sites, Dronah Foundation, in collaboration with Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), Delhi Circle, organised an awareness generat-



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25 April-1 May 2014

World Heritage Day

ing programme on18th April at this Historical Monument. It consisted of two competitions: 'Poster War' and 'Interview Marathon’. The theme for the Poster War was 'Heritage Awareness among people’ in a country that has a very high number of Heritage sites, both built and natural. Taking Qutab Minar as an example, the participants had to depict their perspectives on the issue through thought provoking paintings. At the ‘Interview Marathon’, a questionnaire (related to heritage) developed by Hareesh Haridasan, a Conservation Architect at DRONAH, was distributed among the participants. The interviewers had to

add five questions, as per their understanding of the subject. Vansh Singh (age four and a half years) and Surbhi Anand (thirty one years) were the youngest and oldest participants. The group included students, tourists of Indian origin and other nationalities. With Qutab Minar in the background, the enthusiasm of sixteen children, busily transferring their perception of the monument into Posters, was an inspiring and enchanting sight. For the ‘Interview Marathon’, each participant was required to interview ten people. The questionnaire was aimed to assess the awareness of visitors about Heritage sites; the questions re-

The Concept

he first World Heritage Day was celebrated on 18 April 1982 by The International Council of Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), in Tunisia. The concept has been approved by UNESCO. It is also known as 'International Day for Monuments and Sites'. It is very important to observe this day in a heritage-rich country like India, where 15 additional sites have been added to the tentative list of 33 sites that are waiting to be recognised. It may be the highest number of sites offered by a country. In India we often disregard such sites. One of the glaring examples is the heritage monuments - like temples and ancient buildings - in Keonjhar district of Orissa, which are falling apart due to mining activities and no maintenance. Equally appalling is the state of the Aravali range, especially around Gurgaon. In spite of the Supreme Court, in May 2009, banning all mining activities of all minerals in the Aravali Hills – which are spread over a 448 sq. kms. area - undercover mining procedures are carrying on unabated Qutub Minar is the world’s tallest brick minaret, inspired by the Minaret of Jam in Afghanistan. It is an important example of early Afghan architecture, which later evolved into Indo-Islamic Architecture. Qutab-ud-din Aibak of the Mameluke dynasty, ruler of the Delhi Sultanate, started construction of Qutab Minar - a 73 meters high tower of victory - in 1193, immediately after the defeat of Delhi’s last Hindu kingdom. It was completed by Alauddin Khalji in the early thirteen century. In the twelfth century, Iltumish contributed towards it. An archaeological marvel, it has five distinct storeys, each marked by a projecting balcony; and tapers from a 15 m diameter at the base to 2.5 m at the top. It has gone through several renovations by succeeding rulers, because lightning kept damaging the structure. UNESCO included Qutab Minar in The World Heritage Monuments list in 1983, for depiction of Islamic culture and ‘artistic excellence’.

lated to the origin, significance and maintenance of heritage sites. The Jury Members of the ‘Poster War’ - Somya Johri, an Associate Conservative Architect of DRONAH and Goutam Roy, an Artist of Shantiniketan fame divided the participants in two categories (ages 6 to15 and over 15). Priyansh Aggarwal won the First prize in one category for his entry, ‘Qutab Minar as Nations’ Pride’; Rohit Kumar, a Conservation student from SPA, Delhi, won the second category. The criteria for judging the ‘Interview Marathon’ were the thoughtful additional five questions framed for the interviews and the number of interviews conducted in the allotted time. Vidushi Richashree, a student from Miranda House, Delhi University won

the First prize. Her prize winning question was, ‘Is it okay in your personal view to have socialising events at heritage sites? Yes or No? followed by Why?’ The Programme was well managed by twelve volunteers from DRONAH. Suman Dogra, Site Manager, Qutub Minar from ASI Delhi Circle, supported the Event by providing appropriate space, resources and water facilities. Vasant Kumar Swarankar, Superintending Archaeologist, ASI Delhi Circle, said, “we would encourage and support such a cause in future as well.” This year's theme, 'Heritage of Commemoration' was very appropriate for the chosen initiative. It involved different categories of visitors in several simultaneous activities, which were well planned – though seeming impromptu (because of the participation of a large number of visitors). It involved close interaction between the staff and associates of DRONAH with the unprepared casual visitors to the Monument, for whom this visit became special, memorable and educative. They left with a greater sensitivity towards Heritage, which was clearly and boldly expressed on their smiling faces.u

Industrial concern in NCR


abour unrest in southern Haryana has emerged as a major problem in the development of Industries and the Industrial fraternity is deeply concerned and has demanded that the Government take concrete steps in this regard. This was informed by Ravinder Bansal, Chairman, Steering Committee of NCR Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Gurgaon through a press release issued at Gurgaon. To discuss this matter, a meeting of the Chambers and Industrial Associations was conducted on 27th March 2014, in which the problem of labour unrest in the Industries within the Gurgaon-Manesar-Bawal corridor was discussed. The participants were concerned that if immediate steps are not taken the situation will worsen. A new ‘trend’ of labour unrest by the workers is that they have started staying inside the premises of the industry, which is really a cause of great concern and may lead to damages of plant & machinery, products and other related materials and humans working inside. In the process they are often obstructing and not allowing people to work. If this is not checked, it may lead to a large-scale migration of Industries to other nearby states - which will impact local employment and revenue. All the participants were of the view that the Government should form a Haryana Industrial Peacekeeping squad, for prompt handling of such crises and the frequent ongoing labour unrest problems. It was also suggested that some amendments to the provisions of the Factories Act 1948 are required at the earliest. A joint letter has been sent to the Chief Minister of Haryana, senior officials of the Haryana Government and related Police officers, demanding immediate action. More than 25 Presidents and office bearers of NCR Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Gurgaon), Gurgaon Industrial Association, Industrial Development Association (Gurgaon), Manesar Industrial Welfare Association, Udyog Vihar Industries Association, Haryana Industries Association, Chamber of Industries of Udyog Vihar, Gurgaon Rewari Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Gurgaon Udyog Association and Mewat Chamber of Commerce and Industry were present in the meeting. u

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25 April -1 May 2014

The Lokayukta Steps In  Contd from p 1 Commissioner, Gurgaon. The builders, fearing prosecution, and under the threat of losing their bank guarantees, went for an appeal to the higher authorities and managed to get the cancellation of their licences revoked by promising to complete all the deficient work and setting up the necessary power infrastructure. Yadav says that despite the reinstatement of their licences, the builders continued their wayward ways and ultimately reneged on the promises made to the government and the residents. It was after seeing this lackadaisical attitude of the builders and authorities, that Justice Pritam Pal passed an order on April 16, ordering an inspection to be conducted in the Colony by him, along with concerned officials and representatives of the builders. The Lokayukta, Haryana, carried out an assessment of the internal development works on the site, along with TCP, HUDA, HPVN & DHBVN officials and the builders. He observed that the internal development works have not been carried out as per approved Service Plan estimates and there exist deficiencies and deviations in the laying of a water supply scheme, sewerage and storm

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon


esidents of Rosewood City have got an FIR lodged against the builder for allegedly threatening them when they raised the issue of their private park being illegally ‘taken over’ for the setting up of a power sub-station, gensets and underground water tanks. This also violates the building norms. A case has been registered at Sadar Bazar Police Station, under Sections 420, 406, 506 and 120B, and under Sections 25, 54 and 59 of the Arms Act. Dharmendra Jha, President of Rosewood City D-Block RWA has demanded that the builder should return the space allotted for the park and shift the power infrastructure to an appropriate place. “A number of residents in the Colony have been charged preferential location charges for getting their housing units allotted near the park,” alleges Jha. He also says that the builder should return the money to the respective house owners, as they are not getting the benefits of the preferential allotment. Jha says that the matter was reported to the Police Commissioner Alok Mittal, who referred the matter to DCP (East) Nazneen Bhaseen, who investigated the matter and recommended that an FIR be filed against the

water drainage vis-a-vis the design statement of the approved Service Plan estimates. The Lokayukta also found that the laying and carpeting of roads has not been done in a major part of the Colony. The existing roads are in a completely bad shape, with huge potholes everywhere. The maintenance of internal services - as per approved Service Plan estimates for 10 years as per HUDA norms, including resurfacing of roads after the first five years and 2nd phase after 10 years - has not been done. The builders have not installed the required electrical infrastructure as per the Nigam’s design, drawing and specs, and the system has not yet been handed over to the Nigam. Presently

The RWA has also filed a complaint against the erstwhile Director General, T.C. Gupta, IAS, who is presently serving as the Financial Commissioner and Principal Secretary of TCP Department. The Director General, being the licence issuing authority, is constitutionally duty bound to prevent the abuse of the licence by the coloniser; but, on the contrary, he has given a free rope to the colonisers. While he is empowered to ensure that the provisions of the Act and Rules are complied with in letter and spirit, he has allowed colonisers to have a free will and has thereby shown undue favoritism to them. Yadav alleges that the multiple complaints filed by the RWA against the colonisers were just set aside - without giving them any due consideration.

Builder booked


the system is not being maintained either by the builders or by DHBVN. During the inspection Justice Pritam Pal also observed deficiencies in the electrical infrastructure - the doors of feeder boxes were broken, cables were connected in a haphazard manner and the 66 KV sub station has not yet been set up. Yadav also told the Lokayukta that DHBVN has stopped issuing electricity connections, and the fate of about 3000 buyers in Mayfield Gardens now hangs in the balance. The Sheetal RWA's complaint with the Lokayukta also points out that builders control the department of TCP, and this is the reason that Mayfield Gardens residents have been left to suffer, despite multiple violations. Accusing the TCP department of giving a lot of leeway to builders, Yadav says that hundreds of plot buyers have been cheated, and influenced into making investments on the basis of false and misleading advertisements. “The Director General cannot be absolved of his responsibilities. On the basis of such gross violations, he ought to have initiated action for the cancellation of the licences, besides prosecuting the offenders,” says Yadav. He asserts that though the Lokayukta in Haryana is still not ‘empowered’, the manner in which this issue has been taken into cognizance by Justice Pritam Pal, there is hope that their problems will be resolved in the days to come.u

Robot Is badan ko apne ek chamdhe ka thaila samjho Jis ke andar ek chalta phirta kaarkhana hai Ya yun kah lo ye shareer hamara ek Robot hai Jise banane wala koi bada hi gyaani hai Ya koi kaarigar bahut sayana hai Yahaan sabse ooper ek 'super computer' hai Jo sab control mein rakhta hai Do camere aur do audios iski 'input' device hain Aur ek speaker deta isko voice hai Vigyaan ke asoolon ko banane walon ko bhi Is Robot ko banane wale ne hi banaya hai Yeh kudrat ka namoona hai Ise shayad hi koi samajh paaya hai

builder for violation of norms. The RWA further alleges that apart from poor maintenance and services, the lack of security is a major concern for the 200 families living in D-Block. Despite a rise in theft cases the number of security persons has not been increased. Even for maintenance, only one plumber and a few electricians have been posted. Residents rue the condition of the parks and gardens in the Colony. Jha says that there is even no Community Centre in the entire Colony. It’s time such builders were brought to book.u

Ek aur badi khoobi hai iski jise koi saka na jaan Na jaane yeh Robot kabhi kabhi rota kyun hai Kyun kabhi kabhi khil khila kar hansta hai Kyun dekh ke kisi khoobsoorat Robot ko Yeh dhak dhak karne lagta hai? Kyun kisi pe meharbaan hai ye Kyun kisi se pareshaan hai ye Kyun kisi ko maloom nahin Kitne din ka mehmaan hai ye? Jis din iski machine band hui Is Robot ko kuchh aur Robot Kandhon par lekar jayenge Ya to isko dafnayenge Ya agni ise lagayenge Kitna bhi honhaar yeh yantra ho Har Robot ka bas ek hi ant hai. Ashok Lal,


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25 April-1 May 2014

The Making of an Officer { Col. Tej Dalal (Retd) }


he general perception of an Army Officer, to most civilians, is what is shown in Hindi movies or on Television. They think that he is always in uniform, has a walrus moustache, carries a gun (and a whisky bottle) – and generally enjoys life. He seems to have no hassles. The truth is that an Army Officer is a disciplined soldier, simple in habits and trained to follow orders. He is capable of making himself and his troops comfortable in the worst of places, fights loneliness often and yet has be ready to sacrifice his life - disregarding the thought of his family and their life after him. Duty is sacred for him. So what goes into the making of a dedicated and sincere soldier, especially in the face of the pomp & glitter of civil life all around him; a civilian’s life that has lesser working hours and better money, and yet seems riddled with scams and corruption? It is primarily the training he receives and the pride he takes in his uniform - which he imbibes during his training. This is what makes him stand out – makes him different. To become an Army Officer, you have a number of options, which can be exercised as soon as you complete your Higher Secondary – but are open even for Post Graduates. You can join the National Defence Academy (NDA) at Khadakvasla, the Officers Training Academy (OTA) at Chennai (and now also at Gaya) or the Indian Military Academy (IMA) at Dehra Dun. The duration and specialisation of training varies at each of these locations, but the ultimate aim is to mould a civilian student into a Gentleman Cadet (GC) and eventually into an Officer of one of the finest Armies of the world. The Entrance to any of the above Institutions is through a Written Test, conducted by UPSC, and this is followed by an elaborate selection process conducted by the Service Selection Board (SSB). The aim of SSB is to select candidates who have the abilities and qualities to be good leaders, irrespective of their backgrounds. ‘Officer-like’ qualities are given preference. Some of the options available to a person wishing to join the Army as an Officer are: (see table)

Once you have cleared the Selection process and the Medical Examination, all you have to wait for is the Merit List and your Call Letter. Hereafter starts the process of making you an Officer. If you have been selected to join the NDA, after doing your Higher Secondary, you are one of those lucky ones who will be undergoing a three-year Training cum Degree course at one of the finest Academies of the world. Be it the accommodation, the training area, the Peacock Lake, the Sudan Block or the Cadets Mess - which can serve a sitdown meal to over 2,000 cadets - the NDA has it all. This is also the only Academy that trains cadets for all three Services (Air Force, Navy & Army). After their three years’ basic training, the Cadets move to their respective Academies for specialised training, for their Passing Out as Officers. The Naval cadets go to the Naval Academy Ezhimala in Kerala, the Air Force cadets to the Air Force Academy at Hyderabad and the Army cadets to the Indian Military Academy (IMA) at Dehra Dun. The IMA was established in 1932, on a sprawling 200 acres’ Campus and trains Cadets for Permanent Commission into various branches of the Army. It imparts specialised and practical training in different types of Warfare. For this, it has a specially selected staff, state-of-the-art equipment and a modern infrastructure. The Gentlemen Cadets (GCs) learn the art of Warfare, Tactics, Sports and Tactical Exercises, to enhance their endurance levels - so that

they are ready to face all types of challenges and opportunities. The Chetwode Hall is the main Headquarters of the Academy and houses the Administration. The Academy’s infrastructure includes: the Khertrapal Auditorium, a Central Library, Drill Square (Parade Ground), a Golf Course, Somnath Stadium, the Salaria Aquatic Centre, Stables, a Stud Farm and a Small-Arms Shooting Range. The trainees at the Academy are called Gentleman Cadets as they are expected to uphold the highest ethical and moral values. The words of Field Marshal Chetwode , as inscribed on the walls of the Chetwode Hall, are the credo for every GC passing out of the Academy: ‘The safety, honour and welfare of your country come first, always and every time.
The honour, welfare and comfort of the men you comYour own mand come next.
 ease, comfort and safety come last, always and every time’ (I wish this could be the oath for every Minister/Leader). The training at IMA is gruelling, tough and fast-paced. The GCs have to be transformed into mentally and physically robust soldiers. They are expected to earn the respect and unflinching loyalty of the men they command and develop the capability of leading them proudly into war with utter disregard for their own life. Human Resorce theories would be hard-ressed to develop a template for such a task and response. The first change that you feel is your haircut you may even fail to recognise

yourself in the mirror. You are issued a bike, as you need to be mobile at all times. And yes, you are mobile many a times while running with your bike on your head! Each Cadet is allotted a cabin and a set of uniforms, clothing and an equipment kit. The daily routine starts with PT and Drill classes, with a break for change and Breakfast. This one-hour break feels like 3 hours, for you are expected to accomplish so much within it. You rush from Drill Square to the Kote to deposit your rifle, go to the Mess for Breakfast, bathe and change into the Dress for the next class - always rushing to be on time. That Class could be at one of the outdoor Stands, which are 2 to 3 kms away and your bike may be off the road - or maybe you cannot ride it if you are not part of a squad. After lunch is either Siesta or punishment time (for the defaulters). Games are well-organised. All games in which soldiers participate (Troop Games) - like Boxing, Cross Country Run, Basketball, Football, Hockey and Aquatics - are compulsory. Companylevel competitions are held at 4 to 5 levels, so that every GC gets a chance to participate and represent his Company. Evening Fall-In, for the passing of Orders, is followed by Dinner. A lot more goes on in between to keep everyone busy. The PT ‘Ustaads’ - a Naik/ Havaldar is addressed as ‘Ustaad’ and a JCO as ‘Sahab’, as a mark of respect to the instructors, even though they rank below Officer levels - with their red stockings are the most

S No

Type of Commission

Age (Years)






16 ½ to 19

10 + 2


3 + 1 years



19 to 24



1 ½ years


Short Service

19 to 25


OTA Chennai

49 weeks


Short Service

21 to 27


OTA Chennai

49 weeks



19 to 25

Degree (Engineer)


1 year



23 to 27



1 year


Short Service

20 to 27

Degree (Engineer)

OTA Chennai

49 weeks

dreaded sight on the PT Field. They task is to ensure that your body becomes well-groomed for maximum endurance. PT Tests consist of a One-mile Run, Pushups, Sit-ups, Rope Climbing, Horse Work and Dive Roll. The levels of achievement are laid down and marked accordingly. For example, to attain a ‘Satisfactory’ level in Rope Climbing, you may use your legs; but for being marked ‘Good’, you can only use your hands; and for ‘Excellent’, the legs need to be in an L- shaped position. Such standards are set for all outdoor Tests. A GC has to pass his PT Tests in every term (6 months). The Russian Obstacle Training Course is a special treat, and in the Inter-Company competitions held for this Course every GC has to participate for his Team - so even the ‘weakest’ has to be capable of crossing each obstacle. The PT ‘Ustaad’ firmly believes that at no time should both your feet be touching the ground! If he feels that the Cadets need some ‘easy time’, he makes them play games like ‘four touch’ – where you have to run and touch the four different corners of the PT Field. It gets better. The fastest 2 or 3 are allowed to ‘sit out’, and the rest are asked to continue the ‘running game’. Another popular game is a team game whereby each member of the team, by turn, has to climb up and down a vertical rope. It is important to win, and therefore you don’t mind the blisters on your hands. The ropes are never knotted; it’s taboo – unlike those that you see in the TV Reality Shows. Every GC has to take part in a Boxing bout in his first term – its called Novices Boxing. Another important part of the training is the Battle Proficiency Endurance Training (BPET) Tests. These have to be passed in each term and require lots of practice. The dress for these Tests is the Battle Dress (dangree with all packs), consisting of a backpack & a side-pack (with about 30 kgs weight inside), a water bottle, ammunition pouches, boots, anklets - and of course the Rifle. The other Tests are the 9 feet Ditch, Horizontal Rope, Vertical Rope, Fireman’s Lift (lifting another Cadet on your back and running). In our time we had a 10-miles (16kms) Run; it was like a full-length film – never-ending and without an interval. Fortunately it is has been

25 April-1 May 2014

stopped now. However, there is still a 5km Run – and this has to completed within a certain time. You keep appearing for these Tests till you pass. I remember a foreign cadet of my Company who undertook the 16 kms Run 10 times in his final term, in order to pass else he would have been ‘relegated’ for another 6 months. The Drill ‘Ustaads’ literally drill a sense of discipline into the GCs, both on the Drill Square and off it, because they monitor your every move and have the authority to recommend punishments. They exercise this authority quite liberally! To them the Drill Square (Parade Ground) is a ‘temple’, and you cannot step on it if you are not properly dressed - and if your behaviour is not impeccable. Here you learn various forms of Drill (Cane, Rifle and Sword Drills, Drill without arms, Ceremonial Drills). The Drills instil in you a sense of teamwork & team spirit, co-ordination, discipline, regimentation and, above all, a pride in the Uniform. The Rifle you carry is like your wife - always wellmaintained, cared for and protected! The correct use of various accoutrements is a basic tenet of wearing a Uniform. Every Ribbon worn on the chest signifies a seniority and must be worn right. If it has the Tricolour, the saffron band has to be on the right side. The seniority is as per the order of precedence of the medals and must be shown accordingly. Similarly, the fifth

point of the brass star, on the rank badges, has to always be pointing upwards; the badge on the beret has to be aligned to the left eye; the buckle on the belt has to align with the shirt buttons; and the (shoe) laces have to be without any ‘twists’. Such rules are applicable to each type of Uniform. A Cadet also learns the traditions of the Military. While it is a matter of pride to pass the Drill Test the soonest, the duties of the Drill ‘Ustaads’ do not end at the Drill Square - for they have to ensure that the Cadets are equally disciplined off the Drill Square. Cycling/marching in squads to classes or the Mess, proper conduct and dress when visiting the town on ‘liberties’, a proper haircut each week, and a high standard of uniforms and boots, is expected – and ensured by the ‘Ustaads’. They also examine the works of the civilian orderlies. ‘Ustaads’ are omnipresent and will quietly approach you to note

down your details, if anything is found amiss. You may find them walking next to you in the town and whispering that your tie is not properly knotted, or telling you that you are in an ‘out-ofbounds’ area. Their zest for discipline is so great that at times it may sound ludicrous. A GC was charge sheeted for being ‘naked’ on Parade, because he had a small hole in his trousers; another was charged as ‘unshaven’ on Parade merely because his side locks were below the upper ear lobe! Well, that may sound like ‘humour in uniform’, but it is not very humorous when it turns into a ‘Restriction’ (a punishment whereby you have to: do strenuous exercises in the afternoon, are not allowed any outings, and have to attend a ‘roll call’ before ‘lights out’ - in proper uniform - at the Drill Square). Horse Riding has always been considered very important, for it was

The Chetwode Hall

said in the good old days that those who can control a horse can control the world. The moment you get on a horse, he knows if you can control him. Horses are never kind to GCs - especially on Mondays, after a day’s rest. It is not uncommon to see a horse taking a cadet ‘for a ride’, in every class. Bribing the horse with ‘gur’ rarely helps. Swimming is another must at the Academy. Learning to swim is a simple exercise. You are just pushed into the pool, along with an ‘Ustaad’, and have no option but to cross over - or drown. All obviously opt for the first option. A jump from the 10-meter high board is a great test of your confidence - in self -drowning. The difficult part is in coming down not coming up. Tactical Exercises, Camps, Route Marches, MapReading Exercises, Field Craft and normal theory subjects like Military Etiquettes, Military

S pecial


History, English and Foreign Languages are some of the important learning areas. Training is a continuous process and never seems to end. Every meal in the Cadets’ Mess is also a part of it. Breakfast has to completed in 10 minutes and Lunch eats into your afternoon Siesta. ‘Dinner Nights’ in the Army are not meals, but Parades. Every activity is measured by the clock. The first call of the Bugle signals you to get ready, the second calls you to enter the Mess for Drinks, and the third calls you to enter the Dining Hall. Every course of the meal is served with a Military Band playing - and again, to the minute. Eating has to be synchronised with the ‘President’, and a ‘toast’ is always ‘raised’ with water. In 15 minutes or so the ritual is over and the tummy is supposed to be full. For the juniors these 15 minutes are torturous, with the seniors sitting nearby ensuring that you know which side to keep the bread,

The Passing Out Parade in front of Chetwode Hall

Keeping the National Flag flying

Horse Riding forms an important part of the Training

The Prince of Wales with the Gentlemen Cadets of IMA

An outdoor class at the Stands

how to use the fork & knife, do not converse across the table, talk in low tones, ‘close’ the plate (even if still full) once the senior has done so - and always remember the Drill associated with ‘raising a toast’. All the tough training comes handy while in Service. As the saying goes, ‘The more you sweat in Peace, the less you bleed in War’. Every moment spent at the Academy is memorable, every advice of the ‘Ustaads’ is a blessing and every part of the training ‘a brick in the wall’ in the making of a Soldier. The aim of this article is not to scare away young aspirants who want to join the Armed Forces, but to tell them that while six packs and muscles can be built in a gym, the building of mental and physical toughness and endurance comes through sincere and dedicated hard work - there are no short cuts. This separates the ‘Soldiers’ from the ‘Boys’. It is only after you join your Force that you realise that there is no Service like the Armed Forces - and why you always stand apart.u

12 { Abhishek Behl/ FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon


fter months of waiting, Raahgiri Day finally arrived at Palam Vihar (across the National Highway), much to the delight of residents – who could now soak in the Raahgiri experience nearer home. At 6am itself there are at least 2,000 people gathered at Ansal Plaza, which is likely to remain the focal point. A stream of young boys and girls, on their cycles and skates, and badminton rackets in hand, were seen making their way to the venue. A large stage had been built on the road, where songs, dances and the customary speeches were delivered during the course of the Event. Soon the 2.5km loop was filled with young couples and their kids, along with a large number of elderly residents of this part of the City. Sarika Panda Bhatt of Embarq India, who has been closely associated with this Event, said, “We had been looking to introduce Raahgiri in this area and were delighted that the local RWA came forward to organise it in collaboration with us and the District Administration.” Once the stakeholders were identified, the organisers approached the Police Commissioner Alok Mittal, who has been a supporter of this concept from day one. What followed was a process to identify the track, and any possible bottlenecks that could hamper the movement of traffic in the area. The 2.5km long car-free corridor witnessed people dancing to the tunes of English and Hindi songs; a group of young skaters in their yellow dresses also showed their skills; while cycling groups from across the City, and even from Delhi, arrived in Palam Vihar to show their support for this Event which promotes non-motorised travel in the City. Vikram Singh, a resident of Sector 23, who had come for a walk, said that Raahgiri Day is an excellent event and should be promoted in a big way in the area. “We don’t have a big sports ground or a park nearby where people can play sports, cycle or do yoga,” said Singh. Residents asserted that this Event would help people in connecting with each other; and in an era when social media is preferred over meetings in person, the success of Raahgiri Day showed how much people preferred to spend time with each other - and in an open public space. Rashmi Sharma, a resident of Sector 22, who had come to the Event with her husband and kids, said that she was not aware that this area had such a huge cosmopolitan population. “I always thought that all areas on this side, in ‘old’ Gurgaon, were very different - without the modernity of malls and other facilities, and inhabited by only local residents. This Event has changed my perception of the area,” she said. The women also appreciated the support being provided by the Police department, which has been instrumental in ensuring that this Event remains safe. Nalini Kumar, another visitor, and a first timer to the Event, said that she had been following Raahgiri on the Facebook page and was delighted to know that this was being introduced in Palam Vihar. “This Event is good as it gives space to everyone - the kids, the young and the old alike - to have fun in a safe environment. It also promotes cycling and walking in a big way”, she asserted. The residents of Gurgaon, impressed by the Raahgiri spirit, want that all the internal roads in the City should be reserved for cycles for a couple of hours every Sunday. This however is easier said than done, said a Traffic Police official on duty at the Event, who opineed that Gurgaon roads would need a massive upgradation to push cycling on a large scale - and with harsh summers, the prospect of cycling to work was a brave but maybe foolhardy thought. The enthusiasm of the Raahgiri proponents, however, remains high, and they assert that the manner in which this spirit has made inroads in the City, the time is not far away when non-motorised transport will regain its due

S pecial F eature

25 April -1 May 2014

Raahgiri in Palam Vihar


share - in popular imagination and on the roads. The Gurgaon Administration has fully backed the Event, and Police Commissioner Alok Mittal, who had come to the venue, asked the Palam Vihar RWA and residents living in areas close by to participate in this campaign with enthusiasm. He said that it is a movement for community involvement and participation, with an aim to connect people with each other and make the residents also feel a sense of connect with their City. Mittal also appreciated the RWA’s role. “If RWAs in other parts of Gurgaon are ready to take the initiative, we can take Raahgiri to their areas as well”, he said. The Palam Vihar RWA, which was organising the Event, said that they had consulted a majority of the residents in their colony and nearby areas, to ensure that there was a broad consensus. Sunil Yadav, President, Palam Vihar RWA, said that the number of participants should increase appreciably in the coming months, and they will look to extend the loop to 5km - which is quite feasible. The participants on the first day said that they were happy with how it had been managed. A large number of them hired cycles, which were made available for free on the submission of an ID proof. Gaje Singh Kablana, MCG Councillor, who had also come to the Event, welcomed the Raahgiri spirit and said that it was a healthy way to promote cycling and walking. “Even more important is the need for us to keep our cars and motorcycles indoors and walk to this place. The people can also connect with others, discuss local events and form opinions,” he said. While there was palpable enthusiasm among the youth, who could be seen playing cricket and running on the loop, aware that there would be no cars endangering their lives, the participation of the old and senior citizens was the most inspiring. Vijay Sharma, 74, a resident of Sector 21, said that he had even participated in the ‘original’ Raahgiri. “I think this Event will make the Gurgaon Administration aware that they need more public spaces, parks and safe roads, where people can intermingle and form a common identity,” said Yadav. The Raahgiri movement is clearly also being seen as a unifying force, which will bring ‘old’ and ‘new’ Gurgaon and Gurgaonites together – and hopefully help bridge the class differences in a City where they are becoming sharper by the day. The participation by NGOs and schools like Literacy India and Happy School, which are working to help the children of weaker sections, is a good move in this direction. Rakesh Rana, a visitor, said that it is good for kids from underprivileged backgrounds to come here and participate in this Event, as it will give them confidence to engage with others in the society. The participation of a large number of people from Chauma, Carterpuri and Mollaheda Villages is also an indicator that the Raahgiri spirit has managed to impress the locals as much as the migrants. Ashok Rana, President of Sector 23 RWA, said that he had approached the organisers to ensure that Raahgiri came to this area, as people wanted that such a colourful and social happening should be held here as well. While welcoming Raahgiri, he wants more RWAs to be involved, as this could broadbase the Event and help it in becoming bigger. The success of this Event can be further gauged from the fact that finally around 5,000 people visited the venue in Palam Vihar. Sarika from Embarq said that the concept of Raahgiri has not only become popular, but it is also getting global accolades. A Washington-based NGO, The Earth Day Network (TEDN), has listed it amongst one of the most inspiring sustainability campaigns globally. A special event in being organised by TEDN to make this announcement, and its teams will also be visiting the venues in Gurgaon, to see first-hand the revolution that is taking place on Gurgaon roads.u


25 April-1 May 2014

Book Buddies


embers of ‘Books Buddy’ spent some time with the students of Radiant Kids, a school for the underprivileged. They also distributed books, clothes and toys among the children. Ryan International School, Sohna Road

Teenful Advice

K id C orner

Waste-Art Works


lementary school students of Excelsior American School made the best use of waste by creating beautiful artworks. Children made things like wall clocks, wall hangings and photo frames. Check out the photos of many of the items they made.


Workshop on Adolescent Issues was held at Ryan International School, Sohna Road, for the boys and girls of Class IX. The speaker, Dr Garima, a Counsellor, discussed issues and dilemmas faced by teenagers and the importance of making the right choices. She talked about problems of isolation and sexual abuse and the importance of sharing and speaking out the problems that they faced. She stressed on having a open relationship with parents. This opportunity provided the children good scope for their overall development, which is an integral part of the vision of the Chairman.

Earthy Ryanites


pholding the vision of Chairman Dr. Augustine F. Pinto, the Montessori section of Ryan International School, Sohna Road celebrated Earth Day in a unique way. The students presented a special assembly and the parents were invited to witness the celebration. The students acted like true Earth Envoys and gave confident presentations. They spoke on various natural resources and suggested smart ways to save our planet from various threats. The little crusaders took the lead and made a plea to all the parents to give a serious thought and become partners in saving electricity, water, air, surroundings and wildlife. The Tiny Tots also gave a poetic tribute to Mother Earth. The audience was mesmerised to see the young participants imbibed with such confidence and saluted their spirit and conviction. School Principal Dr. Mouna Gupta congratulated the participants for putting up such a wonderful show.

Worthy Ideas


anyan Tree World School hosted a TEDx Banyan Tree Conference for the students. The Theme this year was: ‘A Good Start In Life, TEDxBanyanTreeSchoolED shares the same passion as TED’. The goal was to bring ‘Ideas worth sharing’ to the community - and ignite discussions. Experts who presented were Annurag Batra and Sister Ranaja. The students presented a musical performance to conclude the Conference.

K id C orner

25 April -1 May 2014


Ryan International School, Sector-40

Ryan Talent Search

A ‘J ayanti’ to a Role Model



yush Gupta of Class II, Ryan International School, Sector-40 secured the Ist position in the Inter Ryan Talent Search Competition. This Mega Event inspires and empowers students to be lifelong learners and critical thinkers, and is conducted over four rounds. One participant was selected from each class, on the basis of his or her performance in the first three rounds. The Final Round was held in Ryan International School, Rohini, and was based on Audio-Visual, Written and Oral Tests. School Head Ms. Peeya Sharma congratulated all the participants and encouraged them to do well in future also.

yan International School, Sector-40 conducted a Special Assembly to mark Ambedkar Jayanti. The young Ryanites of Classes V A & VI E had organised a talk show highlighting the life and works of B.R Ambedkar. He is hailed as the chief architect of the Indian Constitution. Students spoke about his campaign against the Indian caste system, and his fights against discrimination, child marriage and the ill-treatment of women in society. The students took a pledge to work for social equality and fight for the rights of the poor. A Role Play, depicting the social message of the great reformer, was well performed by the students of Class VI E. School Head, Ms. Peeya Sharma, applauded the students’ effort and asked them to follow Chairman, Dr. A.F Pinto’s visio, of making India a leading world power that cares and caters for the underprivileged.

Ode to Railways

Bringing up Juniors



yan International School, Sector-40 celebrated ‘Railway Week’ with great enthusiasm. Students of Class V-E organised a special assembly and a talk show. They emphasised the railways as the most valued and commonly used mode of transport in our country. They apprised the audience of some important facts, like: the first railway line in India, the longest rail route and the highest rail route. A Radio Jockey show was conducted by Class VII students, highlighting the significance of trains and their experience on rail travel. This was weaved with beautiful jingles and songs. The School Head Ms. Peeya Sharma appreciated the students’ effort and motivated them to follow Chairman Dr. Augustine F. Pinto’s vision of respecting our country’s assets and working to bring greater glory to our country.

n eye-opening and informative workshop for Montessori parents was conducted at Ryan International School, Sector-40, by Dr. Manish Mannan, Paediatrician. He briefed the parents about how they can be effective mentors and guide their children, who have just begun their education journey. The Workshop was titled ‘Parenting & tips on how to deal with the child when he enters big school’. The School’s Head, Ms. Peeya Sharma, extended her gratitude to Dr. Mannan for enlightening the parents on how to deal with behavioural issues and to make learning more interesting and fun-filled.

Poetic Lessons




tudents of Lancers International School put up an interesting musical play Shrektacular. The Play is a story of Donkey’s Christmas Holiday.

n Inter Class English Acrostic Poem Writing Competition was held for Classes III and IV. The aim of the Competition was to develop a creative instinct in the students. The topic was – Self. The students had to follow a certain style of poem writing and then decorate their poem. They chose many colourful adjectives to describe their personalities. The participants were judged on the content of the poem, its style and whether it was relevant to the topic and the overall presentation. The respective class teachers guided the participants.


25 April-1 May 2014

C omment

Three Score…and counting


Imagine… They say it’s If there were also 60 hours time to be a Senior. to a day? Just what would we do? Well, it feels good to be back If we had got sixty of the best rather in the 60s. than six? Would we be 10 times better (or But it should surely be a time to worse) today? rewind or retry, rather than retire. How long would it take to develop sixty packs? And The body, heart and mind seem to what would we look like? say so. What if firearms were sixty And though it’s not time to keep Why is today’s shooters? It would be like score, the score card reads 3 60 the new 50? Diwali cracker practice. score….with probably 1 to go Because you are still working… What do ‘wise guys’ (unless ‘Science’ helps stretch Because not all your kids are become when they that to one more or…one married… get to 60? scores an own goal). Because you still eat and drink well… Can you imagine Because you do not sleep early… Sachin, the Because you can still figure out new Little Master, The count to a gadgets… at 60 – he hundred Because grey hair start nowadays at - or even turns 41 The first score is spent in below – 40… today? studying Because daily medicines start at the same The second in working time…. The third in achieving Because you believe your spouse, kids The fourth in reliving and friends - who say so… The fifth in surviving! Because you avoid joining any Senior Citizens’ queue!


Westward Ho!

aahgiri has crossed the Expressway and reached westward to Palam Vihar. It was welcomed last Sunday by an enthusiastic crowd, which came in good numbers. The Event started at 0630 am, with a 2.7 km Run/Walk, covering the area earmarked for Raahgiri. The police force, headed by ACP (West), was present in full strength and managed the traffic very efficiently. Children of all ages were there in their colourful gears and so were the parents and grandparents. The pet canines were represented by Gabber the Pug, who was seen taking part in the Walk. Cycling, Skating, Badminton and Yoga were well-organised and wellparticipated. On a stage, many danced the Zumba, to

rhythmic musical beats. When some of the participants were asked why they felt the necessity for Raahgiri, almost all of them were unanimous in saying that there was a need to increase awareness of: a pollution free environment, the health benefits of exercises and the need to wean children away from TVs, computers and mobiles - at least for some time. With the enthusiastic response from the residents of Ansal Vihar and neighbouring HUDA sectors - and of course the support of Gurgaon Police - Raahgiri has now come to Palam Vihar for good. We hope that this Event will be a regular feature and expand to even more areas. DA Lal

Letter To The Editor Thanks for the excellent editorial (18-24 April). Kejriwal arrived at the political scene like a whiff of fresh air. AAP's spectacular performance in the Delhi assembly elections raised hopes of seeing reduction in all round corruption - all over India! Unfortunately, his several failings - beginning with virtually no control on his idiotic ministerial colleagues, followed by their crazy dharna, his order to file FIRs against Ambani & others and finally, his government's decision to quit after 49 days - dashed all hopes.  Indeed his going after Mukash Ambani - like a man possessed - is his biggest folly. Other than putting India on the global industrial map, Reliance has also delivered excellent returns to millions of investors year after year. You have hit the nail on the

head by differentiating "corruption in high places" and "corruption in every day life". Nowhere in the world, do citizens care about the first kind of corruption. It is the problems in getting common services - electricity, water, house tax, sanction of building plans, driving licenses, income tax, sales tax et all - without bribing that hurts and annoys the middle class. It is this kind of corruption by the petty bureaucrats that western countries have managed to eliminate. If only Kejriwal and AAP had not gone astray and not plunged into the deep end of contesting several hundred seats in the lok sabha election, this man could've helped reduce, if not remove, this kind of corruption.  Krishan Kalra

25 April -1 May 2014

Let your Tears flow { Dr. Rajesh Bhola }


ast week I lost my father-in-law. He was 87 and hale and hearty to the end - attending to his daily chores and business with zeal and zest. It started with a stomach infection and all was over within six days. The family members mourned his departure and some of them wept bitterly. One of his daughters in law was inconsolable, as she had spent many years looking after him with great concern and care. He was the centre of attraction for the whole family and a real connect between the young and the elderly - filling well the inter-generational gap. The most painful thought was that his home at Ghaziabad, where he breathed his last, would no more remain a meeting place for the family members representing three generations. When we grieve we weep, and long for the return of the person we have lost. That cannot, and does not happen however strong our longing. Loss is an affliction that cannot be undone. It is very painful. I have felt the grief in a very physical way - with mood swings, a low feeling, and nothing seeming good. In the process of grieving I once again realized that the overflowing of tears in moments of sadness, grief, anxiety and pain is a unique phenomenon. For over twenty years as a psychotherapist, and in the field of counseling, I have witnessed, time and again, the healing power of tears. Tears are our body’s release valve for stress, sadness, grief, anxiety and frustration. I am grateful when I can cry. It feels like a cleansing, a way to purge pent up emotions, so they do not lodge in my body as stress symptoms such as fatigue or pain. For both men and women, tears are a sign of courage, strength and authenticity. Like the ocean, tears are made up of salt water. They protectively lubricate our eyes, remove irritants and reduce stress hormones. They contain antibodies that fight pathogenic microbes. Our bodies produce three kinds of tears: Reflex, Continuous, and Emotional. Each kind has different healing roles. Reflex Tears allow our eyes to clear out noxious particles when they are irritated by smoke or exhaust. Continuous Tears

are produced regularly, to keep our eyes lubricated; these contain a chemical called ‘lysozyme’, which functions as an anti-bacterial and protects our eyes from infection. Tears also travel to the nose through the tear duct, to keep the nose moist and bacteria free. Typically, after crying, our breathing and heart rate decrease, and we enter into a calmer biological and emotional state. Emotional Tears have special health benefits. Emotionally induced tears have a higher protein content than tears produced in response to eye irritation, such as that caused by a cut onion. Tear experts have discovered that Reflex Tears are 98% water, whereas Emotional Tears also contain stress hormones and some toxins, which get excreted from the body through crying. Crying is an exocrine process, a process by which a (toxic) substance comes out of the body – like in exhaling and sweating. Additional studies also suggest that crying stimulates the production of endorphins, our body’s natural painkiller and ‘feel-good’ hormones. Interestingly, humans are the only creatures known to shed Emotional Tears - though it is possible that that elephants and gorillas do too. Other mammals and also saltwater crocodiles produce Reflex Tears, which are protective and lubricating. Crying makes people feel better, even when a problem persists. In addition to physical detoxification, Emotional Tears heal the heart. People sometimes say, “Please excuse me for crying. I was trying hard not to. It makes me feel weak.” My heart goes out to them when I hear this. I know where that sentiment comes from: parents who were uncomfortable around tears, a society that tells us we are weak for crying; and that ‘strong men do not cry’. The new enlightened paradigm of what constitutes a powerful man and woman is someone who has the strength and self-awareness to cry. These are the people who should impress, not those who put up some macho front of fauxbravado. It is good to cry. It is healthy to cry. It helps to emotionally clear our sadness and stress. Crying is also essential to resolve grief, when waves of tears periodically come over us after we experience a loss. Tears help us process the loss so that we can keep on living with open hearts. If we suppress these potent

Let us step back a moment and familiarise ourselves a little with the eye. Although the eyes appear to be exposed, they are actually protected in a number of ways. The eye sockets, in which the eyes rest, protect them from tactile harm; the eyebrows protect the eyes against possible dripping sweat; the eyelids close over the eye when faced with any potential harm; and tears flush the surface of the eye hundreds of times each day, expelling dirt and creating a flow of lubricants - including substances that fight infection. Tear fluid is comprised of three different layers: the innermost layer is the thinnest and contains a substance called mucin, which helps the watery layer of the tear spread evenly over the surface of the eye; the middle layer is the thickest and largest -its function is to keep the eye moist, remove dust and foreign particles from it and help the eye feel comfortable; the outermost layer is comprised of oils, whose main function is to reduce evaporation of the tears’ watery layer. Thus, the tear fluid remains in the eye for a longer period of time, functioning as an efficient lubricant to keep the eye moist. Additional components of the tear fluid contain anti-bacterial substances, which fight bacteria and other contaminants that could infiltrate the eye.

To gain a better understanding of the role crying plays in human life, several hundred emotionally healthy volunteers were asked to keep a complete record of any tears they shed over the course of a month. As might be predicted, the women in the study reported crying on an average five times more often than the men - five times a month versus approximately once a month. Further, a much higher percentage of men (than women) did not cry at all in the course of the month. Forty-five percent of the men, but only 6 percent of the women, shed no Emotional Tears. There was also a wide range in the crying frequency. Some women did not cry at all and other women cried nearly every day. ''More women reported feeling a lump in their throat when they cried. Women’s tears flowed copiously in about half their crying episodes, but in only 29 percent of the male episodes did tears actually flow. In the rest, the eyes welled up, but tears were not shed.

S piritual


feelings. we are setting ourselves up for depression. When my patients courageously heal their depression or other difficult emotions with tears, I feel better. I am happy for their breakthrough. Some modern therapy movements such as Reevaluation Counselling teach that crying is beneficial to health and mental wellbeing, encouraging it positively. When we suffer a loss it reminds us of the truth of our existential situation. The acceptance of the noble reality of our passion, through tears, can be a great cleansing - a catharsis that helps us to make something of our life. Such is the making of character. Certain rituals in our religions require us to be in touch with our affliction, to allow the passion of grief to rise in us, and to contain that passion while we care for others and collectively honour the realities of human life through catharsis and community support. They affirm our sense of common purpose of compassion for one another and for the world at large; they are, if properly employed, a reaffirmation of the meaning and mystery of life. No one can find heaven until he/she has walked the path of tears. Weeping, like laughter, is good for the soul. Let tears soak into our hearts; let us not try to force them back. Allow them to fall - naturally; they leave behind more wisdom and a calmness of mind and heart. 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 25 years. He can be contacted at

Live good, ordinary lives { Shobha Lidder } The extraordinary ordinary people They live in crowds, in tribes and communities of racial unities They talk and they chatter, they argue no end Of the state of the State, and lend Their views as bona fide scribes They are an authority on everybody’s lives In their porch are docked the best cars They grow the most amazing flowers These people are busy, busier than the bees Rusing and racing to get along, God knows where they are going or gone In their action packed routine, they eat their carbs & proteins They want to forever look like the teens There is always someone to outdo or outshine For the poor and the lesser privileged where is the time Sometimes in their empty coffers they put a dime No time to stop and listen to a tale, of how they live who failed No time to stop and smile, at the cuckoo nesting her child No time to sit on Mother Earth, and play with the dust & the dirt From whence we came and will go, at the end of the Show Waste of a lifetime for the egos we fought Lord elevate us beyond the mind, and not waste this lifetime In petty, illusionary temporary pastimes. Writer Journalist, Social Activist, Teacher Trainer, Reiki Master, Pranic Healer

18 Health & Vitality... Naturally!


a s K l a o ol


W ellness

25 April-1 May 2014

pharmacological properties. The stem bark has analgesic and anti-inflammatory activity and is used as a demulcent (relieves irritation of the mucous membranes in the mouth) and as treatment for diarrhoea. The root bark is employed in treating rheumatism. The leaves have antimicrobial, anticancer, antiplatelet and antiemetic activities, and are applied on skin eruptions.

Tip of the Week

{ Jaspal Bajwa }


s the summer temperatures soar, the appearance of dark purple berries proudly displayed by street-side vendors is a welcome sight. In the northern plains of the Indian subcontinent as well as in neighbouring South East Asian countries, this heralds the appearance of this enticing ‘Phalsa’ fruit. That the seasonal availability is short, and that it cannot be preserved easily, makes this Fruit an even more sought-after seasonal delicacy. The emphasis on the overall intake of fruits and vegetables is once again getting the attention it deserves, in view of the high antioxidant power that fresh produce packs. In this hierarchy, dark berries (like Phalsa) occupy a pride of place, in view of their high anthocyanin, carotenoid and Vitamin C content. The synergistic action of these phyto-nutrients gives a special boost to the healthgiving properties of these fruits. A large number of plants are being increasingly looked at for the treatment of pain and inflammatory conditions The preference for herbal agents, compared to conventional Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) is gaining ground. Herbal agents are associated with a far lower risk of adverse side-effects, such as gastric ulceration, reduced platelets in the blood and skin rash. There is growing interest in the pharmacological evaluation of various plants used in the traditional system of medicine, for the treatment

of inflammatory conditions. Phalsa is high on this list, as this fruit is considered to have potent antioxidant, radio-protective, anti-hyperglycaemic and cancer-protective properties. The Phalsa fruit is astringent, cooling and stomachic (it promotes appetite and assists in digestion). According to Ayurveda, the Phalsa fruit allays thirst, is a tonic and has aphrodisiac qualities. It is used to reduce a burning sensation and to removes biliousness. The most important aspect, which has received the attention of modern scientific enquiry, is the power of unripe Phalsa to alleviate inflammation and its efficacy in ameliorating respiratory, cardiac and blood disorders as well as in fever reduction. The fruits are also reported to have an antimalarial and antiulcer effect. The various parts of this plant possess different

Ripe Phalsa fruits are consumed fresh in the hot summer months, either by themselves or as an ingredient in desserts, or processed into refreshing sherbets, juices and soft drinks. The taste-bud tingling flavour and texture of the Fruit is very unique. Sprinkling a little rock salt, chaat powder or just salt n pepper helps balance the tanginess and the sweetness of the Fruit. Nature’s Wonder Food(s) of the Week: Phalsa or Grewia Asiatica Phalsa is called by various names (Alp–sthi in Sanskrit) and is cultivated on a commercial scale mainly in the Northern and Western states of India. Phalsa fruits are a rich source of nutrients - such as proteins, amino acids, vitamins and minerals, and contain various bioactive compounds like anthocyanins, tannins, phenolics and flavonoids. Each 100 gm of Phalsa fruit contains 90.5 calories, 1.57 gm protein, 21 gm carbohydrates and 5.53 gm of dietary fibre. Important vitamins contained are 4.39 gm of Vitamin C, as well as Vitamins A, B1, B2 and B3. Mineral content is 136 mg calcium, 372 mg potassium, 17.3 mg sodium, 24.2 mg phosphorous and 1.08 mg Iron. Phalsa fruit and its various parts have higher antioxidant activity when fresh, as compared to the frozen form. Phalsa juice has a low glycemic index and may be taken to manage diabetes, because carbohydrates in low glycemic index foods break down more slowly. Recent studies have demonstrated that Phalsa fruit has desirable effects on blood glucose metabolism, manifested as low glycemic response and modulation of ROS (Reactive Oxygen Species) production. Moreover, low glycemic index foods are believed to lessen the risk of Coronary Heart Disease and obesity.u Registered Holistic Nutritionist (Canadian School of Natural Nutrition). For education purposes only; always consult a healthcare practitioner for medical conditions

Husky Digestive { Alka Gurha }


ost of us know Psyllium as Isabgol – the bland husk that is used to relieve constipation. Basically Isabgol is the husk of the Psyllium seed, which comes from a plant ago ovate, a native of India. Each plant can produce up to 14,000 tiny, gel coated seeds, from which Psyllium husk is derived. It is hygroscopic in nature and expands to become mucilaginous. Psyllium improves digestion and cleanses the system, making it an excellent choice for healthy dieting. Psyllium can provide the fibre that is missing from low carbohydrate diets. It is a simple and effective herb used for weight control. It provides a feeling of fullness, which is helpful before meals. Due to the spongy fibre that reduces appetite, it is used in weight control and for general intestinal health. It is quite similar to flax seed and oat bran, because the fibre in Psyllium husk is soluble. Soluble fibre is useful in lowering bad cholesterol (LDL), which helps reduce the risk of heart disease and promotes overall health. Psyllium husk is a bulking fibre, which means that, once ingested, it expands and forms a gelatin-like mass in the colon, by drawing in water. The amount of soluble fibre in Psyllium is nearly five times higher than in oat bran. Psyllium has also been used for treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome, which is a stress-related disorder leading to alternating bouts of diarrhoea and constipation. Compared to other sources of fibre, Psyllium is well tolerated in cases of flatulence and bloating. Because it results in easy bowel movements, Psyllium is used by patients with anal fissures (cracks in the skin near the anus) and haemorrhoids. It soaks up a significant amount of water in the digestive tract, thereby making the stool firm and slower to pass. Sometimes doctors recommend Psyllium to soften the stool and reduce the pain associated with haemorrhoids. Psyllium usage is recommended following an anal or rectal surgery, and as a secondary treatment in certain types of diarrhoea. The dosage is based on your age, medical condition and response to treatment. If you increase your dose or take this husk more often than directed, it can result in gastrointestinal tract obstruction. Those with prior bowel surgeries or anatomic abnormalities should always consult their doctor. This product may decrease the absorption of other medications. Your Nutritionist or doctor will know about the potential interactions between your supplements and Psyllium husk, as well as potential side effects.


There are many Psyllium husk supplements available in the market. Many manufacturers grind the husk into a fine powder and then add artificial flavours and colours to make it pleasant for consumption. This can introduce unwanted toxins into your system. 
It is best to purchase whole Psyllium husk without additives. Since not many can take this, be sure to consume a full glass of water along with it, to avoid choking; it is also important to drink lots of water because the husk can begin to create blockages in the intestines. Children should preferably get fibre from their diet of fruit and vegetables. Psyllium supplements for children should be used only under a doctor’s supervision. u

25 April-1 May 2014


Safeguard against Dengue

very year during this season Dengue emerges as one of the most troubling health problems, particularly in the NCR. Dengue is a mosquito borne viral disease. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the incidence of Dengue has increased 30-fold in the past 50 years. It is estimated that globally there will be 50-100 million  Dengue  cases annually in the coming decade.  India has emerged as the country with the world’s highest Dengue burden - with about 34 per cent of all cases occurring here. Dengue is caused by the bite of an infected mosquito called Aedes egypti a day biter and fresh water breeder. This Mosquito breeds in water collected in ornamental pots in houses, indoor money plant containers, open water storage tanks, overhead tanks that are not fully covered, sumps in ongoing construction sites, broken pots and discarded cups. Ornamental pots should be drained out every week, overhead tanks should be shut tightly and indoor water storage tanks should be tightly shut, to prevent their breeding. It is also important to know how to spot the symptoms of the Disease and to take remedial measures immediately - to prevent it from turning fatal. The prevention of dengue can be at 2 levels: Personal: Do not wear half-sleeved shirts, and shorts, during the Monsoon period. Use mosquito repellant creams or nets at home. Ensure there is no source that ‘encourages’ the breeding of mosquitos in and around your home or work place. Community:  Don’t let water stagnate in containers, coolers, tyres and broken pots. Half-broken tender coconut, randomly discarded, is found to be a very good breeding site What to do when you have high fever: “Normally, the Monsoon season brings with it several kinds of viral infections and fevers. Most of them are largely harmless and abate after a week or so. However, the fever might well indicate Dengue in some cases. In case a fever continues for more than three days, there are rashes on the body, along with an intense headache, make sure you consult a doctor,” says Dr. Satish Koul, General Physician, Columbia Asia Hospital.   If you are infected, just relax and see a doctor. Fortunately, less than 1 % of the cases develop complications, if proper care is taken. However, do not take it lightly and follow the doctor’s advice. Take only those medicines prescribed by a doctor. Drink plenty of fluids and take complete rest In case you are vomiting, experience dizziness and feel sick, get hospitalized immediately. In some cases blood transfusion may be needed.u  

Say no to ‘preventable’ diseases with Immunisation


s per Dr Satish Koul, General Physician, Columbia Asia Hospital, Vaccination is a cost-effective and the safest way to ward off diseases. Apart from children, adults also need vaccination to fight diseases like Pneumococcal Pneumonia, Shingles, Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B. Immunisation can help prevent many other serious illnesses like Measles, Mumps, Rubella, and Chickenpox. The lack of knowledge about diseases that can be prevented with a simple vaccination is a major roadblock. The information dissemination should be done on a mass scale. Knowledge about adult immunisation is poorer than infant and child immunization. Immunisation helps strengthen the body’s immunity by building a combative response towards targeted viruses or bacteria. For instance, in the Polio vaccine, polio viruses that are either killed or are in a weakened state (attenuated) are administered into the body. Once they are inside, our immune system builds a defence and remembers the virus(es) and is able fight it/them when the body is attacked from the outside. When administered to a healthy person, a vaccine triggers the immune system to respond to it and build immunity. Immunisation not only saves a person from various diseases, but also over time can help eradicate the disease. Some vaccinations are also required by those who are immunologically weak like the elderly or uncontrolled Diabetics. Immunisation is the thrust area of India’s National Health Missions, under which intensification of routine immunisation, elimination of Measles and Japanese Encephalitis-related deaths and deaths due to other vaccine preventable diseases, are major focus areas.u

Vaccinations are available for adults for Influenza (Flu), Pneumococcal disease, Herpes zoster (Shingles), Human Papillomavirus (HPV), Pertussis (Whooping Cough), Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B. Vaccines for Pneumococcal Pneumonia and Shingles are recommended for people aged above 60.

W ellness


Smile & say bye to Marionette lines


re you put off by your own smile because every time you do so, the lines around your mouth thicken and form a trough right up to the chin? Do you keep looking into the mirror and adjusting your smile, to find a perfect way to minimise the appearance of these wrinkles and folds? If the answer is yes, your solution lies not in the mirror or in restraining your smile, but in dermal fillers – which help fill up the folds and smoothen out the lines. They can be really annoying to have. Yet, every one of us, at some point in our lives, will have to deal with them. The vertical lines and wrinkles, which start at the corners of the mouth and stretch right up to the chin, are called Marionette lines. They are visible even when you have no expression on your face; but when you smile or laugh, they turn into deeper folds and give the appearance of ‘sagging’ and ‘ageing’. These lines also give your face an angry, worried or unhappy look. Usually in the elderly the area around the mouth is often criss-crossed by a wide variety of lines and wrinkles. However, in some relatively younger people too, these lines may become prominent. As we age, our skin loses its flexibility and elasticity and starts sagging. Over the years, the creases and lines that form on our face each time we laugh or frown also start becoming more permanent. Marionette lines too are a result of this. However, you do not need to live with them. New age dermal fillers like Restylane have been designed specifically to treat and ‘fill’ folds and wrinkles like the Nasobial and Marionette lines. Navya, 43, was seriously agitated by the dark folds creeping around the corners of her mouth, and believed that nothing could be done about it. A chance encounter with a Dermatologist at an event helped her realise that the folds around the mouth can be reduced and contained - and that too in a brief session. To gain more confidence she read about hyaluronic acid fillers and their uses and realised that millions of people across the world have been using the procedure. It adds fullness to the skin to correct moderate to severe facial wrinkles and folds - including the lines from the nose to the corners of the mouth, the area just below the nose and above the upper lip, the corners of the mouth and the Marionette lines. Hyaluronic Acid is a naturally occurring substance in the skin, and is responsible for giving the skin its elasticity. It also promotes water absorption and gives the skin the much-needed hydration. With age, the natural reserves of Hyaluronic Acid start depleting and slowly give the skin an ageing look. How much of the filler will be required to treat you depends on how much prominent and well-founded the lines are. The impact of a session lasts up to six months. A smile is an essential part of our feature and people do many things to get just that perfect smile. Some get their teeth corrected, others reform their jawline. Getting a procedure done to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and deep folds around the mouth provides a ‘smile lift’. In case of Navya, it was only a deep network of wrinkles and folds around the corners of the mouth, right up to the chin, which troubled her and made her appear older than her age. The Marionette lines have given way to a charming smile.u Dr. Indu Ballani- Dermatologist & Cosmo Physician


20 Dancing Shiva

{ Meenu Thakur Sankalp }


ritjof Capra, an American physicist of Austrian origin, authored ‘The Tao Of Physics’ in 1975 and brought to light the concept of creation and destruction as the essence of inorganic matter - while drawing a very interesting comparison with Lord Shiva’s Dance, which he termed as a dance of ‘subatomic matter’. Capra also explained the relationship between Shiva’s dance and science, potentially inferring that destruction eventually led to creation and evolution. Shiva’s dancing form, the Nataraja (King of Dance), and his cosmic manifestation (Nritya-murthi) has been a part of Indian mythological folklore. It is believed that Shiva danced to put an end to the universe and ordered God Brahma to create life anew. The Nataraja form has been depicted through sound rays emanating from the beating of a hand drum (Damroo) by Lord Shiva, and has also been associated with the five elements of nature: Air, Water, Fire, Earth and Ether, by many religious scholars. Capra believed that Nataraja’s body and

hands represented the sky and the eight directions (ashtadik): the three eyes represented the sun, the moon and the directions; the smile, the crescent moon; and the tiger skin, the attire. The serpent on his neck and the body of a dwarfed demon under Nataraja’s feet embodied the qualities of enlightenment, wisdom, protection, freedom, kindness and the control over negative qualities like sloth, jealousy, anger and dimness in knowledge. Shiva or Mahadeva, the great and auspicious Hindu God, is arguably the most popular of Hindu deities and is worshipped extensively in the Shaivate tradition of Hindu religion. He is considered to be one of the trinity of Hindu Gods - along with Brahma (Creator) and Vishnu (Preserver). Mythologically, Shiva performs the role of the Destroyer, but in equal measure he is considered to be the Preserver of Divine Art. Many scholars like Capra were intrigued by Shiva and his dancing forms - primary of them being the fearsome and the compassionate. Shiva is seen as a yogi (ascetic) living on Mount Kailash and also as a married God with two children (with his wife Shakti or Parvati). He has also been portrayed as the slayer of

{ Krishan Kalra }


B on V ivant

25 April-1 May 2014

he other day I picked up a replacement mobile phone that the company had generously agreed to give in lieu of another recently purchased one with which I was facing difficulties. Since they’d offered any model – on payment of the price differential –I opted for the new ‘slim yet powerful’ one. I was happy - till I reached home and decided to charge it. The pin on the old charger wouldn’t fit! Of course there was a new one in the carton, but you need these little contraptions everywhere – the bedroom, kitchen, car, office or travel kit. So the next day I had to order 4 new ones @ Rs. 390 each! Phone-wallahs are not the only ‘creative’ ones. Have you ever noticed how the orifice of a toothpaste tube has become bigger over the years? “Elementary, my dear Watson,” the great Detective would‘ve said. “You end up consuming more of the fancy contents

demons - his fiery third eye reducing evil to ashes. His matted locks hold a crescent moon, which controls the flow of the holy Ganges that trickles down from his hair; and he holds a Damroo in one hand and a Trishul (Trident) in the other. Shiva is believed to manifest the Cosmic aspect of Dance. He is the Lord of the Divine Dance called Tandava, which is a vigorous and enthusiastic form of expression portraying both a violent nature (Rudra Tandava) and also enjoyment and joy (Ananda Tandava). Hindu mythology has also documented instances when some of the other Gods of Heaven - Krishna (incarnation of Vishnu) and Indra (King of Heaven) have performed the Tandava. As Shiva is generally viewed as a Yogic God, Tandava is often associated with trance, joy, divinity, self-realisation and the merging of self with the Divine. Shiva’s Dance also manifests Divine eternal energy, propagating qualities from the fifth Veda - the Natyaveda, which encompasses lyrics, gestures, music, emotion and sentimental connotations from the other four Vedas. Tandava is also said to be a paradox in real terms: the yogic ascetic, who is calm within himself, free from tensions and worries and who has experienced the absolute, transforms himself into a dancing mode, juxtaposing the internal calmness with energy, activeness and playfulness, through agitated and frenzied movements. Tandava is considered to have its origins from Tanda, one of the attendants of Shiva, who instructed Bharata Muni, the author of Natyashastra, the treatise of Classical Dance, to incorporate Tandava within two modes - the Karanas (108 in number) and the Anghaharas (32 in number). These are a combination of hand gestures and feet movements, where seven or more Karanas form every Anghahara. The Shivapradosha Stotra also mentions that when Shiva performs the Tandava, the other Gods accompany his performance. Brahma, the Creator, sets the rhythm (tala); Vishnu, the Preserver, plays the Mridangam (a cylindrical drum); Goddess Saraswati, the Goddess of Learning, plays the Veena (stringed instrument); Lakshmi, the Goddess of Wealth, sings; and Indra, the God of

Games Companies Play in the tube!” Talking of the ‘fancy’ stuff, any honest (?) dentist would tell you that each toothpaste has only 3 basic ingredients; foaming agent, flavouring & calcium carbonate. Whether you pay Rs. 20 for a 200 gms tube or Rs. 55 for 100 gms, there is little else. “Its only a lubricant for massaging your gums,” I was once told by a friend who manufactures tooth brushes! So we buy ‘special whitener’ or ‘gums protection’ or ‘confidence booster’ and end up paying 5 to 6 times more for only the creative publicity. It’s another story that brush designs keep changing in quick succession – flexi, tongue cleaning head, tapering bristles, colour changing ones. In the process the prices of these

Heaven, plays the flute. Even Goddess Gauri performs with Shiva in an enjoyable performance in the evening. The female version of the Tandava performed by Shiva’s wife Parvati is called the Lasya, and the tradition of Lasya is still prevalent among female dancers. There are also instances when Shiva has performed the Tandava in fury, especially when his wife Sati (the earlier birth of Parvati) immolated herself after being insulted by her father. Shiva is believed to have made Heaven and Earth tremble in his Dance of grief and anger. He is also believed to take the form of Bhairava or Veerabhadra while dancing vigorously in the Samshan (cremation ground), in order to free the trapped soul from bondage and to reduce ego to ashes and dust. He dances in the midst of demons that, according to scriptures, fear and revere Shiva as their only God. Shiva is also believed to dance for the purification of the soul, protection and well-being of his devotees, destruction of avaidya (illicit deeds), adharma (unrighteousness) and maya (illusion). The different postures adopted in the Tandava are also depicted by the Nataraja form, where Shiva wears different earrings on both ears. He holds fire on one hand, raises his foot and crushes a dwarfed demon under the other; points one hand forward while holding a Damroo, straps a serpent on the other wrist and touches the Chakra (the wheel of life) with his hand and feet. Shiva’s Dance has been documented in Hindu religious scriptures, in bronzes and sculptures, especially in the temples of South India. The followers of the Shaivate tradition and the worshippers of Shakti (the consort of Shiva) believe that Shiva’s Dance underlines the principles of the cosmic and philosophical tenets of the Hindu religion. Metaphysicists dealing with the principles of abstract concepts like knowledge, being, identity, time and space, have also acknowledged the meaningful amalgamation of the known and the unknown through the Dance of Lord Shiva. Shiva, to many, is not only a God who is worshipped, but also a Dancer who facilitates scientific, cultural and religious unison.u The Writer is a renowned Kuchipudi Danseuse and Choreographer

‘simple massagers’ have multiplied many times over; and of course a bigger head ensures that we end up squeezing out a little more of the ‘fancy’ lubricant! There is an interesting theory about potato peelers being sold in different colours matching those of vegetables like carrots, louki, horseradish and beetroot. “The chances of the peeler being thrown away with the peels are greater this way!” confided a manufacturer friend once. But the story of the ‘scrubber that wasn’t’ is perhaps the most ingenious. This guy developed a special stainless steel mesh based ‘utensils scrubber’ for a big FMCG company at a considerable cost. The scrubber was so good that not only did it reduce the detergent consumption, the damned thing just wouldn’t wear out. “Double whammy,” said the ‘creative’ Marketing chief. No prizes for guessing what followed. The scrubber was promptly withdrawn from the market.u

G lobal

25 April -1 May 2014


Cut-outs and See-throughs { Andrea Abrell/Frankfurt / DPA }


he secret of style is knowing how to draw attention to your assets without exposing them. Some of the best designers have taken that to heart and integrated transparent materials and Cutouts into their Spring and Summer collections. A strategically placed cut-out over the belly button on a dress, for example, looks great. Everyone will look, but they won't see much. There are plenty of other places to use a Cut-out. Fornarina has been focusing on the decollete, while Liu Jo has cut flower patterns into the hemlines of its collection of skirts. Style Advisor Andreas Rose, says, "Only young, very slim women should wear clothing with a Cut-out on the stomach." Even they will need to be careful: a belly Cut-out might look great standing in front of a mirror, but it could be a disaster when you sit down and folds of fat are exposed to the staring onlooker. On the other hand, a knee-length dress

with Cut-out elements in the hem or sleeves can be worn by almost any woman. The easiest way to wear this style is with a Cut-out above the shoulders. That can make a rather formal top look more stylish. Sisley has a top in its collection with Cutouts so large that they make the remaining material look like small shoulder straps. Slightly more problematic are Cut-outs on the back. They prevent you wearing a brassiere, which would be visible through the gap. The secret to Cut-outs, like so many things in Fashion, is being careful not to overdo it. "With Cut-outs you should only ever wear one item of clothing at a time," says Style Advisor Ines Meyrose. You also need to avoid bright colours. Colours like beige, black, light blue or dark blue work well. Always avoid patterns. "You should also wear flat-heeled shoes or a classic pair of pumps, to make the outfit look cool and relaxed and not overdressed," says stylist Maria Hans. Andreas Rose also points out that any skin

exposed by a Cut-out needs to have a healthy tone. Transparent materials are experiencing a comeback this Summer. Many collections have very light translucent blouses in all kinds of variations. H&M has one in white with gold ornaments, and Lui Jo has a beautiful blouse with a floral pattern. "But if you go for the transparent look, you must be careful that it doesn't turn into a skin show," says Rose. "Too much can be too much." Designers have responded and tailored their creations to make them wearable, even in the day time. Rena Lange has a dress that only has transparent sleeves, for example. Hugo has opted to allow just the shoulder blades to be exposed on one of its dresses. Completely transparent items of clothing do have a place in day wear. Fashion Advisor Maria Hans recommends wearing a non-transparent top beneath a see-through blouse. That looks very classy, especially when the transparent item is shorter than the clothing it covers.u

Normcore: an unpretentious look becomes the new fashion trend { London/ DPA }


he hipster era of colourful printed T-shirts, linen bags and nerd spectacles is over. The normcore age has begun. Normcore, as the name suggests, is influenced by the bland sameness of normal clothing. An example of Normcore is the late Apple CEO, Steve Jobs, who was known for wearing just jeans and black polo-neck sweaters. Some Londoners spend a lot of time trying to work out what the next fashion trend will be, whereas followers of Normcore don’t know they already have perfect styling. Middle-aged tourists from middle America unconsciously adopt Normcore: their jeans, pullovers and sneakers, even on a ‘work’ day, are chosen purely for comfort. u

Handbag Fashion

{ Sakhir, Bahrain/ DPA }


ormula One keeps thinking of Michael Schumacher. Ferrari's Fernando Alonso posted a photo of himself driving in the Bahrain Grand Prix practice in front of a huge "With You Michael" sign painted on a crash barrier. Michael is making progress. He shows moments of consciousness and awakening, from an induced coma in a hospital in Grenoble. Doctors started the ‘waking up process’ in late January. "Hopefully the good news about Michael is true," the Ferrari driver Alonso said in the Facebook entry along with the photo, accompanied by "#KeepFightingMichael #strongman." World champion Sebastian Vettel said, "it is nice to hear that things are improving." u

Future of Augusta's 17th Hole { Augusta, Georgia/ DPA }


embers of Augusta National are not yet sure if the iconic Eisenhower Tree will be replaced on the 17th fairway, Club Chairman Billy Payne said recently. "We do not yet have a definite plan as to what, if anything, we will do to the 17th Hole beyond this year's tournament. We are closely examining play and scoring on the Hole this week and will make a decision after careful observation and consideration." The loblolly pine tree - famously named after former US President Dwight Eisenhower, who lobbied the Augusta Committee to have it chopped down - fell victim to a snow storm in February. Other trees along Augusta National's pine-lined fairways also had branches trimmed or removed following the storm - meaning that it could now be easier to recover from errant shots. u

Health trend: Vegetable Smoothies

{ Monika Hillemacher/Berlin/ DPA }

{ Frankfurt / DPA }


lack will play a big role in handbags later this year, judging by products that flooded a major recent Leather Fair. Heavy Black combined with Cool Grey, with occasional Orange, Red or Bright Blue contrasts, will be the trend-setting look. "It's tradition combined with the future," is how Fashion Advisor Martin Wuttke describes the look, which is aimed at both men and women. Wuttke insists, "Handbags for men are becoming fashionable." Over 280 exhibitors showed their designs at the ILM International Leather Goods Fair, previewing what will show up in European stores in the late autumn and winter months. Designers have aimed to achieve a more relaxed look, to encourage men to take up bags as a fashion accessory. Instead of choosing a formal briefcase, a businessman can pick up a sporty looking shoulder bag. Little backpacks remain as popular as ever, especially the sort you can also carry at the end of your arm - but this year the makers will be giving them a fresh accent. Upcoming designs are more rectangular, with sharper contours and

Alonso posts "With You Michael" photo


less rounder edges. Women have a lot more to choose from than men, with many combinations of styles and materials. Nubuck Leather has been given a layer of varnish or plastic. Big prints are another feature found in many Women's Handbag collections. Rivets are as common as fringes, with most women's bags trending to geometrical shapes. Wide bottoms are another feature common to most designs, along with conspicuous zips. u

smoothy drink of spinach, apple and cucumber is very healthy - and it's also the latest health trend. Following on from the Fruit Smoothies, Vegetable Smoothies are the drink of choice for the health-conscious person. "Juices that are more than 50-per-cent vegetable are reportedly perfect for anyone on the go." However, Bernhard Watzl from Germany's consumer protection body, the Max Rubner Institute, doubted if smoothies were a gamechanger, saying: "If you eat five portions of fruit or vegetables a day, then you don't need to drink a Smoothy too." However, Watzl went on to say that if Smoothies encourage people to eat more vegetables, then that's a positive development. u


G lobal

25 April -1 May 2014

Late-night talk shows

Roman friars turn to online ‘begging’ { Alvise Armellini/Rome/ DPA }


{ Andy Goldberg/ Los Angeles DPA }


he popularity of latenight talk shows on US television has often been cited as one of the major reasons why most Americans don’t get their recommended eight hours of sleep. That may not be totally tru, but the excitement sparked by the announcement of Comedy Central stalwart Stephen Colbert being chosen to replace David Letterman as host of the Late Show, proved that in an age of fractured audiences and endless alternatives the latenight show genre remains a cornerstone of US popular culture. Celebs and fans immediately flocked to Twitter to congratulate Colbert, 49, on his ascendance to one of the most coveted spots in the US entertainment world. But there was also an undercurrent of disgruntlement that, yet again, TV executives themselves - mostly white middleaged men - had appointed one of their own to the late-night talk gallery. “As much as I love Colbert, I was kind of hoping late-night TV could have someone who, you know, isn’t a white male,” tweeted fan Jessica Contrera. For those hoping that Letterman’s retirement might provide an opportunity for more

diversity in the high-profile category, the feeling of frustration was all too familiar. It was only in February that Letterman’s great rival, Jay Leno, stepped down from the grand-daddy of the genre, The Tonight Show - which was popularised by Johnny Carson. His successor was Jimmy Fallon, 39, a funny and multi-talented host - but unmistakably a middle-aged white dude. All the other popular hosts of late-night TV talk shows fit the same demographic. Jon Stewart, 51, may be the best known of them, but also fitting the model are Jimmy Kimmel, 46, Craig Ferguson, 51, Seth Meyers, 40, Bill Maher, 58 and Conan O’Brien, 50. About the only exception to the gallery of white men is Chelsea Handler, whose irreverent late-night show on the E! cable entertainment channel is so popular that she was rumoured to have been a strong rival to Colbert’s candidacy. Steven Steinberg, the Senior Editor of Variety, said that CBS chose Colbert largely because of his appeal to the most coveted of all TV audiences young white men, who watched his Comedy Central show, The Colbert Report, in the millions. In that show Colbert played a right-wing news host whose venomous and simplistic views were a cutting riposte of many of the arguments espoused by conser-

{ Antje Weser/ Los Angeles/ DPA }


hen the US Navy, Coast Guard and the California Air National Guard were called into action recently to rescue a California family stranded on a sailboat hundreds of miles off the Pacific Coast of Mexico, who paid the bill? It appears that such a rescue is ‘on the house’. The Kaufman family of San Diego were attempting to sail around the world with their two daughters, aged 1 and 3, when the younger daughter Lyra fell seriously ill about 900 nautical miles off the coast of Mexico. To make matters worse, the 36-foot sailboat, called Rebel Heart, was disabled and adrift in the ocean. The family sent a distress call on April 3 and

vative politicians and news anchors. On ‘The Late Show’, Colbert will ditch that persona and function more as a straight talk show host - but he should nevertheless be able to keep his audience, TV critics said. “CBS gets a proven performer and notably one whose cultural impact is, compared to the competition, out of proportion to the size of his audience,” noted Robert Lloyd in the Los Angeles Times. And added, “It is perhaps, and quite purposely, not the boldest choice–another white male, it will be widely noted, hosting another talk show–but broadcast television networks are not in the business of making bold choices.” But for the targets of Colbert’s Comedy Central show, his appointment to one of the most coveted spots on television was yet another sign that mainstream media was just a liberal cabal dedicated to the destruction of conservative values. “CBS has just declared war on the heartland of America,” Radio pundit Rush Limbaugh said on his show, ‘Thursday’. “No longer is comedy going to be a covert assault on traditional American values [and] conservatives. Now, it’s just wide out in the open. What this hire means is a redefinition of what is funny and what is comedy.”u

ranciscan friars in Rome need 125,000 dollars to restore the cell where their namesake saint once slept when visiting medieval popes, and have turned to online crowdfunding to raise the sum. “For us, crowdfunding is a form of modern begging,” said Friar Stefano Tamburo, Head of the Franciscan monastery of St Francis at Ripa in Rome’s Trastevere neighbourhood. Begging is a core Franciscan tradition. Tamburo said he made a conscious decision not to seek any financial support from the Vatican or from the Italian State, which owns the St Francis at Ripa church and is formally responsible for its upkeep. “We believe that public money should be spent on social programmes,” he said. St Francis of Assisi was a 13th century monk who lived in poverty and sought to clean up the Catholic Church from corruption. Pope Francis found him such an inspirational figure that he adopted his name when appointed to the papacy last year. St Francis’ cell - a small, windowless room with an imposing altar that was added in the 17th century - has walls blackened by smoke from candles and oil lamps, falling plaster and a ceiling damaged by woodworms. It also needs new electrical and ventilation systems. The aim is to complete the work by the end of September, so that the restored cell could be inaugurated October 4 - St Francis’ Feast day - at a ceremony to which the Pope has been invited. u

Spacecraft approved for first Asteroid visit in 2018 { Washington/ DPA }


ASA has approved the design of a new spacecraft to collect samples from an Asteroid in 2018, and construction will begin soon, the US space agency said recently. The Mission to Asteroid Bennu was approved in 2013, and NASA has just completed its design review. “This is the final step for a NASA mission to go from paper to product,” said Gordon Johnston, Head of the OSIRIS-REx programme - as the Asteroid mission is called. OSIRIS-Rex is to launch in the fall of 2016, land on Bennu in 2018 and study it for about a year. It is to return to Earth, with about 60 grams of surface material harvested with a robotic arm, in 2023. Bennu, roughly the size of five football fields, could hold clues to the origin of the solar system and ‘life’. Also, the Asteroid is considered the most potentially haz-

Who picks up the bill? was rescued on April 6. Dean Ross, Deputy Emergency Chief for the National Park service, told NBC News that there is no charge for rescue on the high seas. "We’re out there to save lives. You can’t put a price on that,” Lt. Roderick Bersamina of the California Air National Guard’s 129th Rescue Wing told NBC. Hesitating to call for help out of concern about the cost could endanger lives. That is why those who are rescued are generally not asked to cover the costs, the NBC report explained. “We don’t want people to second-guess themselves,” Coast Guard spokeswoman Petty Officer 3rd Class Loumania Stewart said. None of

the agencies involved in the rescue would comment about costs, NBC reported. But beyond the rescue costs, many are questioning the parents' judgement. Eric and Charlotte Kaufman defended their lifestyle in a statement released from the USS Vandegrift and posted on NBC: "We are proud of our choices and our preparation." However, eight days into their trip, Charlotte wrote in her blog ‘Rebel Heart’: "I think this may be the stupidest thing we have ever done." She went on to describe the lack of comfort and the physical and psychological hardships of the journey. "It is crazy. It is nuts," Char-

ardous known to humanity, as there is a 1-in-1800 chance that it could collide with Earth in 2182. A team from the University of Arizona is leading the Mission. Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company designed the spacecraft and will build it. The Mission was selected in 2011 as the next NASA New Frontiers project. Under the Obama administration, NASA cancelled a plan to send another mission to the moon and set new goals to send astronauts to an Asteroid by 2025 - as well as to Mars eventually. OSIRIS-REx, which stands for Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security Regolith Explorer, is a one-billion-dollar project. A long-range plan calls for NASA to capture an Asteroid and drag it into a stable orbit around the moon. Once in orbit there, the Asteroid could be visited by astronauts as early as 2025. u

lotte’s brother, James Moriset, said to the San Diego NBC affiliate. Comments on Charlotte Kaufman’s blog range from outrage to support. “Cannot believe how selfish u people are. I am not one to comment on many things, but when I saw the ridiculous rescue on the news I had to seek out this blog. Jeopardizing your children's lives as well as the lives of your rescuers, not even mentioning the exorbitant cost to all the taxpayers in our great country," Concerned Citizen posted on April 7. Others support the family: "I admire your adventurous spirit. You can prepare all you can but you never know what will happen. People without boats will not understand,” posted by Liz on April 7. u

G lobal

25 April -1 May 2014

Promptly remove unused apps

Just because it’s deleted doesn’t mean it’s gone { Benjamin Krueger/Cologne/ DPA }


f you delete something on your computer, don’t assume it’s gone. Even emptying the wastebasket or recycling bin of a computer does little more than remove the path to the file and clear the space it uses for being written over. The data is still there on your computer or mobile device, just waiting to be picked up by someone with the right tools. To really be on the safe side, opt for deletion programmes, which write over the data with blank space. To be truly safe, Germany’s Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) advises writing over the affected area seven times. However, multiple write overs can take a long time and are also not always necessary. “There are a lot of methods for secure deletion - like overwriting a document with zeros or a pattern or random numbers,” explains Marcel Fourne of the Institute for Internet Security at the Gelsenkirchen Bocholt Recklinghausen University of Applied Sciences in Germany. He further recommends the formatting of hard drives before

selling or disposing them, as data can be spread throughout your drive. Apple’s Mac OS X operating system comes with in built tools for safe data disposal. Windows users will have to track down useful tools like CCleaner, a free programme from Piriform. CCleaner can clear off files that are not needed, like a browser’s

history files. Its settings also allow users to decide how clean an area should be and how many times it should be written over – from one to 35 times. CCleaner also uses overwriting to make sure the contents of the recycling bin have been properly removed. There’s an integrated function called Wiper, which makes sure the entire hard drive is clean. Another reliable deletion tool is Eraser, from Heidi Computer. This freeware for Windows can embed itself into the contextual menu, allowing users to easily pick the option of completely removing a file - with a right-click. Eraser also allows

an automatic rewrite of certain regions of a hard drive. Darik’s Boot and Nuke, better known by its acronym DBAN, has established itself well as a hard drive erasing tool not dependent upon any operating system. DBAN is burnt onto a CD, which can then be used to start up a computer. This can be used to clean key areas for filing of data, but also to remove partitions that cannot be reached when booting from the standard hard drive. However, sensitive data is also found on a lot of smartphones and tablets. It’s important that deletion operations on these devices are being undertaken properly. It’s usually not enough to ‘return to factory settings’, on these portable devices. Ensure that you erase all drives – including SD Cards that came with the device - before selling or passing on a handheld. If it can connect to a computer with a USB cord, then use the previously mentioned PC tools to clean up. If there are doubts about any of these options, try out a recovery tool like Recuva, from Piriform; it is designed to resuscitate lost data (to see how thoroughly the items were deleted in the first place).u

Facebook crosses 100 million users in India, aims for billion { New Delhi/ DPA }


acebook has surpassed 100 million users in India, its largest base outside the United States, and the South Asian country will be its focus for future growth. The world's largest Social Media company confirmed that more than 100 million people access Facebook in India, up from 8 million users in 2010. "Now we look forward to 1 billion in India - that's a different focus and challenge," said Javier Olivan, the Company executive

in charge of global growth. The Firm has chalked out a 10-year plan on how to leverage the growing use of mobile phones and the Internet to increase its user base in the country of 1.2 billion people. Facebook, established in 2004, has about 1.23 billion users across the world. Analysts say India is expected to overtake the US, which has 183 million users. India represents Facebook's largest growth potential in the developing world, particularly compared to China, where the service is largely blocked.u

Electronic atlas maps metals dissolved in world's oceans { Bremerhaven, Germany / DPA }


n international project aimed at mapping key trace elements and isotopes in the world's oceans has released intermediate data gathered during its first three years of work. Sea water contains dissolved iron, cadmium, lead and other metals. Figuring out how they got there and how they spread, tells us about climate change and pollution, and their knock-on effects for sea life. The data so far covers the Arctic, Atlantic and Indian Oceans. The Pacific comes later. "Thus far, more than 25,000 water samples from varying depths taken at about 800 measuring stations have been examined for over 200 substances," said the Bremerhaven-based Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI). It is one of the more than 30 scientific institutes in 10 countries participating in the Geotraces project. Fifteen ship expeditions were needed to collect the data. An online electronic atlas is being created on the basis of the digital data package, providing section plots and animated 3D scans of ‘sources, sinks and distribution pathways of iron, cadmium, lead’ and other metals in the oceans, AWI said. Atlas users can use the controls to see an ocean's temperature, salinity, turbidity and oxygen concentration. Among the initial findings by scientists is a relatively high concentration of lead in the Atlantic Ocean at depths of about 500 to 2,000 metres - presumably a residue of exhaust gas from cars, prior to the introduction of unleaded petrol in North America and Europe. Concentrations of the pollutant that have not yet sunk below 500 metres are substantially lower and reflect the ban on leaded petrol. Targeting all major ocean basins over the next decade, Geotraces aims to show how climate change and man-made emissions alter the distribution of pollutants, vital nutrients for sea life such as iron and other trace substances in the oceans.u


{ Tobias Hanraths/Frankfurt/ DPA }


t’s not hard for them to pile up. There’s the game you downloaded once when you were bored; there’s the office assistant that didn’t work as well as you hoped. Yes, before you know it, you’ve got a smartphone full of apps you never use. Get rid of them immediately, warns an expert, as

they can easily be a gateway for malware to access your system, especially if they have access to the rest of your system. “Anything you don’t use should be removed from your smartphone,” warns Jens Heider of the Fraunhofer Institute for Secure Information Technology. Getting rid of unused apps also frees up space on the phone. The problem is that every app is a potential security risk that can be used by hackers and criminals. The risks include seemingly silly apps like ‘flashlights’, to those produced by ostensibly trustworthy firms. “If

an app is the source of danger, you can’t assume it was because of the developer’s bad intentions,” says Heider. A simple programming error is often enough to turn an app into a gateway for hackers. This applies even for programmes that are only installed, but never used. “It’s true that an app can’t do any damage as long as it’s not running,” says Heider. “But, as a hacker, I can make sure it does [run]. “The more access rights an app has, the greater the damage it can cause,” he warns. That’s why people should avoid games that demand more access than they really need. “Unfortunately, you can’t control the individual access rights with Android,” says Heider. “That was in planning once, but it got thrown out.” However, users of Android 4.3 (Jelly Bean) can employ a trick to regain control. By installing Nova Launcher, which is free, they gain access to an app that helps them set guidelines for each and every app. Of course, there are drawbacks. Some apps might not start without their standard rights; and the widget won’t work for those who have upgraded to Android 4.4 (KitKat). All apps that you maintain on your smartphone should be up to date, since updates will theoretically close any security problems. Of course upgrades can also make any app potentially more dangerous. “Access rights are often expanded with each new version,” warns Heider. However, Android will ask for specific permission before downloading an app that allows new rights. u

Punishing anti-social behaviour

Twitter announces Redesign

{ Munich/ DPA }

{ Los Angeles/ DPA }



he days when Xbox One gamers could behave without fear of consequences are coming to an end. Microsoft plans to instal a ratings system based on traffic lights with green indicating players with a good reputation, while yellow and red will indicate players who have been judged anti-social by other players (because they hurled insults, for example). Players with a yellow label would get a warning; red-labelled players might find it hard to find people willing to play with them. Worse, they might be blocked from some functions, like Live streaming. u

he social networking service Twitter is revamping its design, the San Francisco-based company announced. "The new Web Profile lets you use a larger profile photo, customise your header and show off your best tweets," Twitter said on its blog. Tweets will be better organised overall, the Company said. Users will be able to see which of their tweets have engendered the most activity, because they will appear larger. Users will also be able to pin their best tweets to the top of the page. There will also be a variety of options for users when checking out other timelines..u

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