Page 1

26 July-1 Aug 2013

Vol. 2 No. 49  Pages 24  ` 7

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

Bachche Ki Jaan Loge Kya?

FG First

Over months now FG has been puzzled and pleased at the leading dailies taking up stories, and now features, on civic and social stories featured by us. The last few weeks have now seen a one-two slam. Our Post Office, and especially Live-In (Page 1) stories are now being taken up without a pause…yeh time bhi aa gaya hai. Guess it shows that we were, and are, on the right path.

Helpline Numbers ASHA PANDEY

Women's Help Line:

{ Shilpy Arora / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com

W

hen Gurpreet sent her 4-yearold son to an international school in the City, she expected that he would come home ‘ready’ - having grasped most of the things that he was taught in class. But this didn’t happen. Instead, Ayaan turned out an ‘average’ student, with teachers trying hard to lift him up - but in vain. “My son is not what I expected him to be. He should be brighter than this. At the age of five I expect him to show interest at least in one field - either academics or extra-curricular activities. Something must be wrong; I am disappointed,” she says. Another mother, Princy, a resident of Sector 57, is perplexed by her daughter’s behaviour. Princy, an outgoing person, loves being the centre of attention, while her 6-year-old daughter is shy and always clings to her - rather than going out to play with the other kids. Princy’s husband, a pilot in the Indian Air Force, always dreamt that his daughter would become a star tennis player; while she prefers to read books. What bothers Princy is that she herself was a star child during her school days, and she expected her daughter to be even better – rather than trailing behind her peers. Both Princy and Gurpreet are living in fear that their child will be labelled as an ‘average’ student and might not be able to achieve any ‘success’ in life. Many parents today expect their children to be star performers, both in and outside the classroom. Nowadays the biggest concern among parents is wheth-

er their children will be successful in their careers. It is a vicious cycle of competition, society, lifestyles and consumerism. And it is not limited to just the parents; most schools also seem to thrive on this hype. Children are increasingly becoming a ‘pet project’ for their parents and for the schools. Despite opportunities being aplenty in today’s world, especially for a youngster, the parents want their children to be proficient (nay, child prodigies) at an early age. The expectation is that latest by the age of 14 a child should have set a goal for success. The child is expected to have at least a couple of medals in hand, to make his parents feel proud. And if children are not able to live upto the expectations of their parents, they need to go through endless (swimming) classes and (piano) lessons. Parents are willing to go to any extent to make their children succeed. “Some parents see their children as extensions of themselves, rather than as individuals who would have their own likes and dislikes. These parents most likely want their children to achieve the dreams that they themselves have not achieved,” says Dr. Kapil Bharadwaj, an occupational therapist Schools and mentors also use the children to claim fame for themselves – to bask in their students’ glories. While parents can spend large sums for sports training, the world-class schools make it easier for the students to participate in international tournaments. Contd on p 6 

Legal Aid Clinic:

0124 2221591

0124 4081537

Goonj NGO: 011 26972351


02 RNI No. HARENG/2011/39319 Postal Regn. No. GRG/35/2012-2014, VOL.–2 No.–49  26 July-1 Aug 2013

Editor:

C oming U p

26 July-1 Aug 2013

WORKSHOP  THEATRE  NIGHTLIFE  MUSIC  ART

u

Atul Sobti

Workshop

Music

Food

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

Prakhar Pandey

Sr. Sub Editor:

Anita Bagchi

Sr. Designer:

Amit Singh

Circulation Execs.:

Pankaj Yadav Sunil Yadav Manish Yadav

Dy. Manager Accounts & Admin: Shiv Shankar Jha Asst. Manager Media Marketing: Bhagwat Kaushik Sr. Exec Media Marketing:

Vikalp Panwar

Snr. Executive Ad. Sales:

Abhishek Gautam

Consulting Art Editor: Qazi M. Raghib

Music

Musical Evening Savour The Fruit

@ Fruit Forest, Plot no 1 & 2, Sector 29 Date: July 23 onwards Time: 10:00 am to 11:00 pm

T

reat yourself to a unique experience as your fave fruits become exotic dishes. Try Fruit Forest sandwiches, salads and paninis – all fruit-based. Select from a variety of dishes – Grilled Apple and Nutella Panini with cheddar, Cottage cheese Piri Piri wrap with pineapple, Fruit coleslaw with raisins salad, Mixed Leafy Greens with Orange Segments and Candied Walnuts with Strawberry and Cream Crepe. Try it to believe it.

Editorial Office 213, Tower A, Spazedge, Sector 47, Sohna Road, Gurgaon 122001, Haryana Phones: +91 124 421 9092/93

T

reat your taste buds to a super Lunch of a five course buffet. Enjoy the lunch hour with a delightful combination of food, spirits and music.

letters@fridaygurgaon.com contributions@fridaygurgaon.com subscription@fridaygurgaon.com

events@fridaygurgaon.com marketing@fridaygurgaon.com Friday Gurgaon (Weekly) edited, published and printed by Atul Sobti on behalf of Arap Media Ventures Pvt. Ltd. from 213, Tower A, Spazedge, Sector 47, Sohna Road, Gurgaon 122018, Haryana. Printed at Indian Express Ltd. Plot No. A8, Sector 7, Gautam Budh Nagar, NOIDA – 201301, Uttar Pradesh The views expressed in the opinion pieces and/or the columns are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, Friday Gurgaon or Arap Media Ventures Pvt. Ltd.

To Advertise Please Contact

7838003874 9999444818

ommemorating 100 years of Indian cinema, the evening is a musical tribute to Mohd. Rafi on his 33rd death anniversary. Eminent artists from Delhi and Mumbai, in collaboration with Delhi Music Society, will be singing popular Rafi numbers.

All You Can Eat

@ Underdoggs Sports Bar & Grill, 
NH 8
 Date: July 31 Time: 7:00 pm Onwards

I

f you haven't had your fill of bingeing on food over the weekend, head out on Monday for an unlimited supply of chilled beer, thin crust pizzas, chicken wings and much more.

Workshop

Waldorf Doll-Making Workshop

@ Kinder Care, C 15/12, Arjun Margh, DLF Phase 1 Date: July 30 & 31 Time: 4:00 to 7:00 pm

T

@ Zura
, 
Sector 29 Date: July 26 Time: 12:00 noon to 3:30 pm

editor@fridaygurgaon.com

adsales@fridaygurgaon.com

C

Super Lunch

Emails:

circulation@fridaygurgaon.com

@ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: August 1 Time: 7:30 pm onwards

Sufi Fusion Night

@ Buzz, South Point Mall, Third Floor, Golf Course Road, Sector 53 Date: July 17 to September 25 (Wednesdays) Time: 9:00 pm onwards

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pend mid-week with your friends and be a part of a fun-filled evening with the best of Sufi mixes playing in the house. Enjoy the soulful music whilst you dig into a variety of snacks.

his Workshop is for teachers, parents, creative people and self-learners, who want to learn this unique art. Hand crafted Waldorf dolls are made with lots of love and care, using only natural materials. The Workshop is conducted by Ute Meuser, an artist, philosopher and Waldorf teacher, who has taught in Germany, India and Nepal.

Want an Event to appear on the Coming Up page? Write to us at anita.bagchi@fridaygurgaon.com

Theatre

Dance

Rajasthani Food Festival

@ Radisson Blu Suites, The Creative Kitchen, 
Sushant Lok Phase I
 Date: Up to July 28 Time: 7:30 pm to midnight

T

ake off on a royal culinary journey to the magnificent state of Rajasthan. Indulge yourselves to a gastronomic delight with authentic Rajasthani specials like – Laal Maas, Safed Maas, Murg ka Mokul, Murg Bajre ka Suwetta, Dahi Macchi, Saag Gosht, Govind Gatta, Ker-Sangri Kofta, Mutter Dhoodiya Kofta, Mutter Mangodi Saag, Panchmela ka Saag, Dal Baati Choorma, Gwar Phali and more.

A Theatrical Experience

Bharatnatyam Recital & A Ballet On Buddha

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@ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: August 3 
Time: 7:30 pm

a Biday Noy, a presentation of two Bangla Shruti Natoks, based on Rabindranath Tagore's short story and novel. This 'Combo of Playlets' will feature Robibar (50 mins) and Shesher Kabita (60 mins). The playlets are directed by Aninda Sunder Ghosh.

@ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: July 31 Time: 7:30 pm

Bharatnatyam recital by Vaishali Sarkar and her disciples. This will be followed by a Ballet on Buddha – a performance of Chhau dance, presented by Satish Kumar, Kishan Kumar, Vaishali Sarkar and Mayank Hashmi.


C oming U p

26 July-1 Aug 2013

03

WORKSHOP  THEATRE  NIGHTLIFE  MUSIC  ART

RunFor yourWife

Art Show

@ Beanstalk, 
 Sector 15 Date: Up to July 31 Time: 11:00 am - 8:00 pm

Email us at:

Timings: 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM & 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM Tickets: ` 1000, 700 & 500

Tickets available at the venue Or

Throne of Blood (Japanese)

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T

elf-Transformational Yoga classes by Swami Vidyanand and Sonu Wassan. The Classes will include Hatha Yoga, Prana Yoga, Meditation and Prayers. This form of Yoga emphasises on gentle but powerful postures, working on your body, mind, breath and awareness.

Book Online At :

Under Licence By Samuel French Ltd. (JAGRITI)

Directed By: Mrinal Dhar .....................................

On Sat. 27th & Sun. 28th July 2013 (4 Shows)

Cinema

@ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: Up to July 31 Time: 6:30 am to 7:30 am

Sponsorship, Bulk / Corporate Bookings info@behroopiyaentertainers.com

*Terms and condition apply

Self-Transformational Yoga

For

& any query:

n Exhibition of group paintings by Arun Dev, Manikandan, Murali Nagapuzha, Prokash Karmakar, Prince Chand, Promod MV, Sanjay Soni and Shyamal Mukharjee.

Wellness

PRESENTATION

98101 74282, 98113 09797

A

w

A

The World’s Longest Running & Funniest Comedy Ever Written

Art

Venue

At Apparel House, Sector 44, Gurgaon

Nightlife

@ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: July 30 Time: 7:30 pm

he film is about a war-hardened general who, egged on by his ambitious wife, works to fulfill a prophecy that he would become Lord of the Spider's Web Castle. 
The film is
directed by Akira Kurosawa.

Manta Sidhu, Jishnu Banerjee on Guitar, Saurabh Suman on Bass and Reuben Narain on Drums.

Astitva Live

@ Cocoa House, 
Sector 48, Sohna Road Date: July 27 Time: 8:00 pm

E

njoy the evening with Astitva, a multi-genre Hindi band, which has worked towards carving a niche for itself. Get ready to hit the dance floor as they belt out popular Bollywood numbers.

Time: 8:00 pm onwards

G

et into the party mood as the Queen of Remixes, DJ Barkha, promises a sizzling performance behind the console.

Saturday Night fever

@ Roxxie 15, 1st Floor, JMD Regent Arcade, MG Road Date: July 27 Time: 8:00 pm

Musical Saturday with DJ Barkha Kaul @ Club Rhino, 
Sector 53 Date: July 27

Kunal Travels FLIGHT TICKET LOW FARE AVAILABLE TRAI N TI C KET HOTEL BOOKI NG VOLVO BUS PAC KAGE TOUR Shop 512/21, Raj Nagar - OM Nagar mode, Near Rajeev Chowk, NH-8

Contact : 9212702704, 9711177004

Ground Zero Live

@ Drift, 
Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: July 31 Time: 8:30 pm Onwards

A

disco-themed Party where the DJ will churn out some of the best Club and Disco mixes all night. Party on and party hard!

I

f you are opting for a relaxed comfortable weekend, then head towards Drift, as the band Ground Zero performs live. Get into the mood with slow and alternative rock, country and pop music playing in the background.

MAP Live

@ Cocktails & Dreams, Speakeasy, Sector 15, Part II Date: July 26 Time: 8:30 pm

C

atch the Band playing tunes from their first studio album, 'Rear View'. They are joined by guest artists Pranai Gurung, Bhakar Gurung, Joshua Grant and Prabir Sekhri. The Band features: Singer-Songwriter

Bollywood Music Night

@ Howzatt, Galaxy Hotel Shopping & Spa, NH 8, Sector – 15 Date: Up to August (Wednesdays) Time: 8:00 pm onwards

F

ire up the dance floor as celebrity DJ Sunny Sarid spins out rocking Bollywood music. Sing along or just dance to your fave Bollywood numbers.


04

26 July-1 Aug 2013

THE WEEK THAT WAS  A verdict in the ‘bogus voters’ case is expected on August 22nd. 16 people, including Minister Sukhbir Kataria, have been charged. The Minister has been summoned for the fifth time.  13 IPS officers are transferred in Haryana. Transfers pertinent to Gurgaon, with their new posting, are: Maheshwar Dayal Joint Commissioner, HQ Anil Kumar Rao IGP Crime Vivek Sharma Joint Commissioner, Crime Naazneen Bhasin DCP (East)  The case of the Chief Judicial magistrate’s wife suicide/ murder has been handed over to the CBI – after a Special investigation Team was set up earlier.  A minor is raped by her friend’s father, in a Sec 31 slum; a woman is raped by a shopkeeper, on the pretext of offering her a job.  The professor involved in the molestation of a law student has been transferred; however, the victim has protested this lenient action.  An army man is held for shooting at his wife and 2 others.  A Delhi policemen and a ragpicker are caught by the State Vigilance Bureau in a bribery case; their accomplices in Gurgaon, an ASI and a havaldar, are on the run.  A notorious criminal, with a Rs 25,000 bounty, is caught; 4 are caught carrying illegal weapons.  As astrologer dupes a woman of Rs 85,000; there is a burglary at a judge’s house – goods worth lakhs stolen; a man on a morning walk is robbed of his rings, in Sector 46; a car thief is caught with the help of GPS technology.

Haryanvi Made Easy Get a taste of the local lingo 1. Today I am going to cook for you. Aaj main tere tayin rotti banayunga. 2. I went for cooking classes. Main rotti banana seekhan ki kilas main gaya tha. 3. I learnt to cook all kinds of food there. Uth manne saari dhaal ki cheez banani seekh li. 4. I make very tasty dal. WMain bahut sawad dal banayun su. 5. Why are you looking so scared? Tu dar kyun gaya? 6. Just give me one hour. Bas main tey ek ghanta de dey. 7. There is no big utensil in your kitchen. Tere rasoi main badda kaashan koney. 8. Now how can I cook anything? Ib main rotti kyunkar banayun?

 A pub is fined for serving liquor to minors.  Impurities are found in mid-day meals in the State; a dead lizard is found in one case.  Many children fall sick after consuming iron tablets given to govt school children as part of a nutrition scheme. The primary cause seems to be that they took the pills on an empty stomach, and maybe a high dosage.  DC inspects the Hero Honda Chowk, to look for a solution for the traffic mess, as also ways to avoid pedestrian deaths.  Uniworld Garden II buyers stage protest against Unitech, for the delay in the hand over of their apartments.  The developer says that dispute in land ownership has caused the delay.  DLF Phase I residents are agitated at the waterlogging in the colony, which has bugged them for years now.  35 new power substations of 33KV are to be put up in the City, at a cost of Rs 95 crores; 19 existing substations will be augmented.  NASSCOM holds a meet on traffic issues and management.  A hotelier is suspected in a Zila Parishad land-grab case.  MCG plans to set up 40 new public toilets.  3 dengue cases come up in DLF Phase III.  The 18th route of the City Bus is flagged off.  A PIL seeks that at least basic amenities should be provided to the lakhs of people who are staying in the IAF protected zone for years.  Honda 2 wheeler company workers are to hold a protest rally on 25th. July, the anniversary of their 2005 agitation.  Kawadias will not be allowed to carry and run DG sets this year.

WORKSHOP

T PIC

be the change you wish to see

OF THE WEEK

Dear Readers,

MUSIC

NIGHTLIFE

ART

EXHIBITION

DANCE

Want an Event to appear on the Coming Up page? Write to us at anita.bagchi@fridaygurgaon .com

Each week we will feature a question/topic to get your views/suggestions. Selected views will be published in the subsequent issue(s) of Friday Gurg. This week's Topic is:

How would you help the underprivileged? Write in to us at

letters@fridaygurgaon.com

IF YOU ARE NOT GETTING FG COPIES REGULARLY

SMS

NR to 08447355801


26 July-1 Aug 2013

b: Farhan Farhan Akhtar landed in the City the day it poured. Clearly, his spirits were not dampened – he was spotted participating in a promotional activity for his film, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag. Farhan was seen awarding the winner of the Bhaag Milkha Bhaag contest, organised by Royal Enfield. He also took time out to attend the launch of hairstylist wife Adhuna’s salon, ‘b:blunt’.

H appenings

05

Stars Bajatey Rahe

4U 4

Tips

The cast of the upcoming film, Bajatey Raho, was spotted at a local Mall. Actors included Tusshar Kapoor, Ravi Kissan, Dolly Ahluwalia and Vinay Pathak. The Director of the movie, Sashant Shah was also present. The crew seemed ready for fun and games as they interacted with their fans. The comedy-thriller releases on July 26th.

by ShahnaZ Herbal Cosmetic Queen Padma Shree Shahnaz Husain is the CEO of the Shahnaz Husain Group – India’s leading company in the field of natural beauty and anti-aging treatments.

Q. My work requires me to be outside through the day. Is there any

way I can protect my poor face in this scorching heat? SH Applying a sunscreen before sun-exposure is the only way to protect the

skin from the sun and heat. Most sunscreens have built-in moisturisers. Therefore, they would also keep the skin moisturised. Carry wet tissues and sunscreen, so that you can wipe and refresh the skin during the day. If it is humid, compact powder may be applied after wiping the skin.

WINNER

Kavya Kohli

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

Punjabi By Nature ‘Punjabiyan di battery charge rehndi hai’... this was visible at the musical evening ‘Khushbu Punjab Di’, held at Epicentre. Renowned Punjabi singer, Lilly Singh, belted out popular numbers of the 50s and 60s. She was accompanied by Col. R.C Chadha, Founder and President of Global Cultural  Foundation. This was followed by a vibrant bhangra performance. The evening truly brought out the fragrance of Punjab.

Well-being in Antarmanh Antarmanh: A Centre for Emotional Wellbeing, in association with HealthSquare, organised a Workshop ‘Smart But Scattered’, for kids (aged 3-8 yrs) having difficulties in focusing. The Workshop entailed an Assessment Session for kids— through Art Therapy—along with fun-filled activities. Seema Rekha, a certified Practitioner from the Institute of Counselling, Glasgow, conducted a Behavioural Guidance Session for the parents.

If there is an Event that you would like featured on this page, mail us the details at: anita.bagchi@fridaygurgaon.com


06

Bachche Ki Jaan Loge Kya?  Contd from p 1 Ravi (name changed) was the first to participate in an international sports tournament from India. At the age of 6, when he won a 100m race in school, his parents realised that he could become a star athlete. He was therefore put through rigorous training. Although he couldn’t win, he was feted as a hero. As soon as Ravi came back from the international tournament, the school went into overdrive for media coverage. A celebrity night was arranged, alongwith a lavish cocktail dinner. Today his profile is the part of the admission brochure of the school. “Most schools use star performers for their own selfish motives – for publicity. They don’t seem to care much for the child’s future; they should be concentrating on teaching the child how to pursue his/her success. That is why such success today is very short-lived. Children are also not taught to cope with failure,” says Sumant, a child psychologist.

All Work, No Play

When eight-year-old Tanya is asked about her favourite pastime, she says, “I love to play with my dolls!” While Tanya’s parents don’t mind her spending time with her dolls, not everybody is so lucky. Most of her friends are saddled with schedules – School, Art class and German lessons on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays; Tennis and Keyboard on Tuesdays and Thursdays; Horse-riding and Yoga on weekends. To most of the parents, playtime seems to be an old-fashioned word. So the children not only have to cope with a high level of academic pressure, they also have to live up to parental expectations on many fronts. “I want my daughter to play and have fun. But at the same time, it is important for her to keep pace with various activities. Being a parent, it is my responsibility to inculcate a valued skill in my children. Sports, dance and art are essential to a child›s development. I just want to be assured that her time is being well-spent,” says Princy. Unfortunately, play is not considered as providing any value or skill. Dr. Sumant says. “First of all, extra-curricular activities can’t be a constructive substitute for play. Secondly, it is important to realise that the motive for learning any extra-curricular activity should be to inculcate a hobby, not to make your child a star-performer.”

C over/S tory

26 July-1 Aug 2013

He feels that playing with other kids is a crucial part of a child›s development, at any age. It helps build language skills, teaches co-operation and helps children in thinking critically.

The Downside

As there has been a great increase in the number of competitions and child reality shows, children are having to face immense pressure nowadays. Unfortunately, in some cases, such pressure has proven disastrous. One such instance of the dangerous effect of pushing children to become star-performers has been the paralysis, following a depression, of a 16-year-old participant, Sumitra Sengupta. She had received harsh remarks from a judge in a dance reality show. “Sometimes humiliation in front of many, during the shows and competitions, can take the form of an emotional or psychological abuse,” says a teacher at Heritage School. She says that Heritage is one of the few schools in the City that doesn’t push children to participate in competitions. Another parent, Geetika Gulati, a resident of Sector 27, is worried over her son’s performance in academics. Her son, Aaron, was the State topper a couple of years ago. But today his performance is below-average. Chirpy and outgoing, Aaron suddenly stopped talking to his friends and teachers. He lost interest in studies. “His school wanted to send him to a national Bournvita Quiz. Since childhood he has been winning various state-level and national quizzes, but he couldn’t appear for that Quiz. This somehow left a strong negative impact on him, and he went into depression. We don’t push him anymore. I just want my child to recover from all this; I don’t want an extraordinary child,” she says feelingly. Aaron is undergoing treatment for depression at Medicity.

The Way Forward

Dr. Sumitra suggests that there is a need to focus on

the process rather than just the outcome. Parents need to focus on what’s valuable; they shouldn’t try to immediately focus on the level of performance that they think

their child should reach. Besides, there is a need to draw a line between being a parent who has a simple desire that their child should achieve excellence in academics and co-curricular activities, and a parent who has decided to make his/her child a sportsperson or a doctor, very early in childhood. We need to remember that parenting is not a project. Parents should aim at ensuring their kid a happy childhood, rather than the most secure future. If a pre-school child takes interest in playing the piano, it doesn’t mean that she will be very good at it in future. These days parents seem to be in a hurry to decide what their child is/should be good at. Do not rush to find the best piano teacher for her; just let her practice every day

first. Childhood is all about exploring and discovering. Tomorrow she might decide to become an actress. “If a child can use an iPhone and play the piano at the age of 3, people think that she is a gifted child. Instead of judging whether your children are good at singing or dancing, let them gradually discover their own unique interests and talents,” says Dr. Kapil Bharadwaj. Childhood is supposed to be fun; it is supposed to be joyful. A parent’s role is not to decide what the child will/should become and how he/she will achieve that; a parent’s role is to tune in and discover the individuals in their children, and offer them the best support system, as they gradually unfold into the world. u

The Integrated Mobility Plan { Abhishek Behl / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com

W

ith the objective of moving people and not vehicles, the GurgaonManesar Integrated Mobility Plan (IMP) emphasizes the importance of public transport, and integrates the use of land in the City with the transport network. Another major goal of this Plan is to boost the role of Non-Motorized Transport - such as cycles, rickshaws…and walking. The IMP estimates that there would be a population of around 42 lakhs in the City by 2031, and has proposed a spend of Rs. 15,140 crores to boost the transport infrastructure in the City. The common challenges identified by IMP include: traffic congestion, deteriorating roads, pollution, lack of footpaths, no separate track for cyclists, no space for parking and poor design of major intersections. The mobility plan has put forward short term, medium term and long term transport improvement proposals, with an objective of making public transport available to residents within walking distance of their homes, work places and important destinations. The estimated daily vehicular emission in Gurgaon is about 15 tonnes currently. If this situation continues, by 2031 this will increase to 18 tonnes, even with better technology vehicles. The pollution caused by the emission will become a major cause of concern for the City. IMP has proposed that 210km of track should be exclusively made available for Non-Motorized Transport. It also calls for creating a dedicated BRT corridor and monorail services - while in the short term it has proposed that 150 more buses should be added to the City Bus fleet. The survey conducted to formulate the IMP has revealed that several junctions in the City are congested during peak hours, especially those on or just off the NH 8 Expressway. These include IFFCO Chowk, Rajiv Gandhi Chowk, Sukhrali Chowk and Shankar Chowk. Manesar Industrial Estate Chowk has very high peak-hour traffic. While IFFCO Chowk is the only signalled junction, it does not have a pedestrian crossing. There are no markings, and signages are poor, at the crossing facilities, and this has contributed to the traffic bottlenecks. To resolve these issues, and to ensure some systemic movement on Gurgaon roads, the Plan recommends around Rs 1,100 crores for developing a BRT corridor. A major exercise of widening of the roads is also proposed, with almost Rs. 2,600

crores earmarked for this. The Plan proposes multiple flyovers and underpasses, budgeted at Rs. 800 crores. The funding for these projects is proposed from the state and central government, as also from the private sector in Public Private Partnership models. The Plan proposes bus stops at every 500 metres in the Central Business District, and about 1 km distance in other areas. It also proposes a shift of the Bus Terminal to the outer parts of the City, to cater to both the inter- and intra-city transport. One bus stand is proposed to be built in Sector 29, and another in the new Sector 101. The Plan also proposes development of a high capacity transport corridor, which involves setting up of Metro routes along the DMRC Master Plan corridor, as well as along Khandsa Road and NH8, upto the KMP (Kundli Manesar Palwal) Expressway corridor. IMP also proposes to develop truck terminals near Maruti Udyog (Sector 19 on ‘old’ Gurgaon road), and two locations in Manesar (one in Sector 88 along the outer ring road, and another in Sector 128). This will help to organize commercial traffic in the City in a better way, by also avoiding haphazard parking of trucks on the roads. It will clearly add economic benefits to the surrounding area. The truck terminals proposed at these three locations would have a total of 3,000 truck parking spaces, with ancillary facilities. The IMP also proposes the construction of three level crossings in GMUC, located outside the city. Another important proposal is the development of multi-storeyed parking sites at 12 locations. The locations include proposals made by the MCG and HUDA, on M.G. Road, Vishwakarma Road (near Erickson), Sector 29 (near Power Grid), Sector 15 (near Mini Secretariat), present bus terminal site, near Cyber Park, Sectors 10, 43, 47, 48, 52 and City Centre - and additional 8 locations in the new developing areas. Criticizing the multiplicity of authorities managing the transport system and traffic in the City, IMP clearly says that in many tasks, the role of various agencies is overlapping. There is no organized public transport for the intra-city movements in Gurgaon. Private operators are running mini-buses to various neighboring villages; six-seater autos and cycle rickshaws are also active, but not in an organized way at all. There is no restriction in the movement of commercial vehicles. The multiplicity of institutions has resulted in the fragmented functional responsibilities, a low level of local resources, paucity of finance and a lack of overall accountability. u


26 July-1 Aug 2013

Conscious Service write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com

S

akshi, a roadside potter, sends her children to school to not just study but also have a good meal. “My husband and I leave early for work and come back late in the evening. My children never had lunch till the age of five. I therefore decided to send them to school so that they wouldn’t go hungry during the day,” she says. Hari, a housekeeping staff in Spazedge, Sohna Road, feels that the Mid-day meal provided at schools is very nutritious. “I earn enough to take care of the education of my children, but I can’t afford dry fruits and salads for them on a regular basis. That is why I chose a government school for my kids as, besides good education, they get a nutritious meal at least once a day,” he says. Mid-day meals have undoubtedly helped attract lakhs of children to schools. The Mid-day meal programme was envisaged for children, to tackle their hunger and improve their enrolment in schools. However, over time, the quality has suffered, leading to some tragedies. The recent Mid-day meal incident in Bihar is another eye-opener. Nationwide investigations conducted after the tragedy revealed a dead rat in the stocks of Mid-day meals in a school in Alwar; and organophosphorus compounds

(mostly used in insecticides) were found in the meals served in government schools in Maharashtra. In Gurgaon too a dead lizard was found. While this clearly exposes the failure of the government(s) to serve quality meals in schools, some organisations have been able to set a good quality benchmark on a consistent basis. ISKCON Food Relief Foundation (IFRF) is one of them. “We are a rich country with a lot of poor people, and that is sad. Our government has good programmes, good leaders and huge outlays of budgets. But the challenge in our country is deliver these good programmes to the last mile,” says Dhananjay Das, Co-Director, ISKCON Food Relief Foundation, Gurgaon. It all started in 1974, when a follower of ISKCON, A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, saw a group of village children fighting with dogs over scraps of food. Swami was extremely upset and told his students that, “No one within 10 miles of our Temple should go hungry.” In response to his plea the members of ISKCON, and volunteers around the world, started serving free food to the poor. They gradually formed a global network of kitchens, cafes, vans and mobile services – delivering this food to the needy. ISCKON’s Food for Life Programme has today grown

07

into the largest vegetarian food relief programme in the world. Mid-day meal is part of this initiative. From a very modest beginning, the Foundation now covers most government schools in nine states across the country. In Haryana, the State government provides food to many underprivileged and to government schools with the help of IFRF. The Foundation caters to over 1,05,000 children in Gurgaon district – covering more than 635 schools. How it Works The team at IFRF works in shifts. The first shift starts as early as 4 in the morning, with a prayer to Lord Krishna. Volunteers cook, and kitchen staff begin sifting rice and peeling vegetables. The kneading of the dough is taken care of by big machines. An electric roller rolls and cuts the dough, for the preparation of chapatis. While a mega rotimaker dishes out more than 20,000 chapatis in an hour, tons of vegetables and dal are cooked everyday in big vessels. By 8 am the food is packed in huge steel boxes. It is then taken in vans to the various schools in the

A day after a dead lizard was found in a mid-day meal in a Palwal school, the ISKCON Food Relief Foundation, which supplied the food, stated: “We have been implementing mid-day meal projects in Palwal district, and many other Districts, for the past three years. Our centralised kitchen at Dhaulagarh is equipped with the best cooking and pest-control technologies. The incident at Lohagarh seems to be a case of sabotage. Fifty schools had been supplied with food and none of them called us for any complaints.We have requested the Administration to conduct an enquiry into the matter so that the truth can come out soon". Prakhar PANDEY

{ Shilpy Arora/ FG }

S ocial

City. By 10 am the second shift begins, and a similar procedure is repeated. The menu, the food requirement and the nutritious value of the food are communicated to the volunteers on a daily basis by a qualified dietician. The volunteers are also guided about the route each delivery van has to take. “The kitchen is certified for Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point in Food Safety management,” says Mrs. Das, who is a qualified dietician. She works with her husband to make the Mid-day meal programme a success in the City. How IFRF delivers the best IFRF has trained many volunteers to use the most advanced technology while cooking under hygienic conditions. The meals are packed and sealed in specially designed stainless steel containers, and are transported in suitable vehicles. The meals are cooked in the most cost-effective manner. There is a menu of nutritious and sumptuous meals. Khichdi, Chapati and Sabji and Rice and Sambar are all cooked in pure ghee, along with spices and tomatoes. Local taste is kept in mind. Shilpa Sonal, Founder of Bagiya, a school for the underprivileged, opines, “As most of the children in our schools belong to Bengal and other Eastern states, they prefer to have rice instead of rotis. ISKCON volunteers keep even these small things in mind while providing food to schools. They not only provide hygienic and nutritious food, but also keep a focus on the taste of children,” she says. Shikha Yadav, a teacher at the Government School, Sukhrali says, “One can see

children standing in a line at 11 am, and we don’t finish distributing the food till 1 pm.” She appreciates the fact that the Foundation also keeps a check on the wastage of food, and distributes any excess food at the nearest construction site. To manage long queues, the School, along with the volunteers of IFRF, is now working on a better distribution procedure. It plans to make packets, one for each class, and send them direct to the classrooms, where individual teachers can supervise the serving of the food. Based on the saying “You are what you eat”, IFRF believes that nutrition affects the children’s ability to learn. “Iron deficiency is one of the most prevalent nutritional problems of children in India. It may cause a permanent loss of IQ later in life. Anaemic children tend to perform poorly in vocabulary, reading and other tests. Undernourished children also have more difficulty in fighting infection. They are more likely to fall sick, miss school, and so regress in studies. That is why the Foundation provides fresh vegetables and fruits as salads, and dry fruits, as sources of Iron and Vitamin E,” says Das. Moreover, the meal is cooked with the highest standards of hygiene, utilising quality ingredients that meet the nutritional requirements of growing children. “We mix a secret ingredient – of love, devotion and compassion - in each dish we serve,” smiles Das. He also informs that the cost of providing food is not very high; it is Rs 1,000 per child annually. He hopes that the City Administration will soon be able to plan for and provide food security on its own. u


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26 July-1 Aug 2013

{ Anita Jaswal }

A Hobby Pot!

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ot all of us are fortunate enough to be in a career that allows us to innovate, share big ideas and ‘rock the world’. Having a Hobby can give us what our career may not; a Hobby is something we can call our very own. And if we are fortunate enough to have a ‘killer career’ and a ‘wicked awesome Hobby’, that’s like having dollops of icing on the cake. Ravi Narula has been fortunate to have the best of both the worlds! 63-year-old Ravi has, since 1975, been an avid collector of apparel accessories: neck-ties, pocket kerchiefs, scarves, cuff-links, socks and belts; since 1998 he has been studiously collecting handcrafted,  coloured crystal glassware; and since 2005 has added to his collection some rare and priceless Tea Pots! In 1976 he authored the book, Brain Teasers. It is founded on basic maths and logical thinking. Ravi says, “The more you use the brain, the more it grows. This Book acts as a rich protein diet, which doctors say is essential for the development of the brain.” Today this Book, amongst others, is recommended by Infosys for their Engineers’ Entrance Exams (refer  http:// placementpapers.net/helpingroot/infosys/puzzles_guide  ) Ravi resides in DLF Phase II, with his wife and 2 daughters. His other hobbies are reading, writing and reciting

poetry and shayari. He enjoys the Bollywood oldies of 1950s & 60s, and can reel off Filmfare Awards and Binaca Geetmala toppers of that era - including the names of the associated Films, Singers, Music Directors and Lyricists. He loves  socialising at musical theme parties, and claims that he is unbeaten at Antakshari. Talking about his fascinating collections, he says, “My  handcrafted,  coloured crystal glassware  is indeed a collection of rare articles that has been processed by a family in Germany.  I am fortunate to be

The Law & Beyond { Vidya Raja }

A

Sexual Harassment (Workplace)

lmost 16 years after the Apex Court, in the landmark ‘Vishaka’ judgement, laid down guidelines making it mandatory for every employer to provide a mechanism to redress issues pertaining to sexual harassment at the workplace, The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 came into being on April 23, 2013. The Act defines sexual harassment to include any one or more of unwelcome acts or behaviour – like physical contact and advances, a demand or request for sexual favours, making sexually coloured remarks or showing pornography. The Act fills a glaring void in a country with such a large workforce, which includes a significant proportion of women workers across the spectrum – from blue-collared workers to corporate employees.  This Act is one of its kind because of the inclusion of both domestic

in possession of this peerless collection.” Why teapots? Why not other standard ceramic forms - vases, platters, pitchers or bowls? “Starting any kind of collection can be a rewarding, enriching experience and can be the perfect way to learn about particular time periods or cultures. Because tea consumption is such an ancient practice, hobbyists who start a teapot collection join the long history associated with this beverage. Through the materials and the design, each teapot tells

workers as well as agricultural labourers - in the organised as well as unorganised sector - in its ambit. The salient features of this Act are: n  Every organisation employing 10 or more employees must set up an ‘Internal Complaints Committee’ (ICC), to investigate complaints of sexual harassment at every office/branch. n In organisations where there are less than 10 employees, the Government is required to set up a ‘Local Complaints Committee’ (LCC), to investigate complaints of sexual harassment. n  All complaints must be disposed off within a time frame of 90 days, failing which a penalty will be imposed on the organisation. n Employers who fail to comply will be fined up to Rs. 50,000. Repeated noncompliance by an organisation can lead to suspension or cancellation of their license to conduct business. n  At the behest of the aggrieved employee the ICC and LCC can recommend certain interim measures to the organisation/company. These include transfer of the aggrieved employee to another branch/office, or granting leave of up to three months in addition to the statutory leave policy. n The Act also has made provisions to deal with frivolous and vexatious

a tale of the time and place it was created. There are incredible variations in teapots - ranging from the antiques to novelties. You can even get a teapot in the shape of Margaret Thatcher's head - where the tea comes out of her nose! Then there is the rare Tibetian ‘silver monkey dragon green jade teapot’, the small 3" high, 5" long teapot cottage - the New Chester, and The Cat Teapot purr-fect For Tea Parties. In the past, teapot enthusiasts had to sniff out many antique stores, in order to locate a few of

complaints. Pradeep Ramakrishnan, a human resources professional in a leading corporate in India, when asked if he has ever encountered a complaint of sexual harassment said, “Yes. In my previous company we had implemented the entire framework on sexual harassment. As soon as the issue was highlighted there was a committee set up to investigate the entire incident. Actions were taken in line with the policy mandates, leading to the termination of the offender.” Emphasising the need for gender sensitisation he said, “We here have  a proactive approach to sensitising employees on sexual harassment. With an open culture, where anybody can be approached for any personal concerns, there are regular touch-points with employees to address issues that they raise; and some proactive actions are also taken.” A survey conducted by the Center While the Act comes loaded with positives, there are certain loopholes as well. The Act has provisions to look into complaints made by women only, thus making it gender-biased. This Act may also make it harder for women to find jobs, since some employers may shy away.

09

Prakhar PANDEY

their desired items. There was a thrill in the hunt. Today we can use the Internet to search, as well as befriend collectors from around the world. My small appeal to you is to please do things that you are passionate about, which make you feel good – and once you know that this really is so, do it more ! A Hobby is truly a true friend in this life. With a hobby, you will feel the appropriateness of the memorable line in Casablanca – ‘I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship”.u

for Transforming India revealed that sexual harassment at the workplace is quite rampant. It concluded that 88 per cent of women face sexual harassment, 83 per cent never report it and 91 per cent fear victimisation. This could have been because of the lack of any legal provisions, which has now been addressed. This could also have to do with the shoddy and haphazard way complaints have been handled till now. In a sexual harassment case that came to light at the IIM Bangalore campus, it took nearly two years, after the victim made a complaint, for a decision to be taken – despite wide media coverage. The victim in that case filed the complaint in June 2011, her services were abruptly terminated in January 2012 – and it was only in May 2013 that the offender’s services were terminated by the Institute.   Proving sexual harassment in most cases is complex, subtle and highly subjective. The law should provide the victim the strength to wade through these constraints, and help deliver justice. u The writer is a qualified legal professional who has practiced before the Madras and Karnataka High Courts


10 { Abhishek Behl / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com

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ransparency and accountability have never been the key strength areas of government institutions in India, and particularly in the Millennium City of Gurgaon. While improper planning has ensured that Gurgaon remains dysfunctional, the lack of proper monitoring of government projects and services has put an even bigger question mark on the quality of life in this bustling cosmopolis. Whether it is roads, drains, lanes, collection of garbage or sewerage facilities - Gurgaon might have the plans and the spending power, but the execution of the work has remained lax and substandard. It was to improve the quality of monitoring and to link payments with work, that the Gurgaon Municipality had launched the ‘Pragati’ portal with much fanfare. Sudhir Rajpal, the then Municipal Commissioner, had said that this Portal would improve transparency and accountability in the system. However, this ‘love affair’ of the local municipal authorities with the muchtouted transparency did not last very long, and on May 24 this year the Portal was shut down - ostensibly to cut cost, and develop an even better software. Sources however reveal that as soon as Rajpal went to Chandigarh it became apparent that this project was running on life support, and it was only a matter of time before it was snuffed out. The new application MCG has been talking about is related to Project Management, which is a different dimension. Critics argue that the real reason that MCG shut down Pragati was that the officialdom was not comfortable with sharing details of projects, including payments made, with the public and Municipal Councillors. Nisha Singh, Councillor Ward no 30, says that Pragati was always envisaged as a monitoring tool, which gave information and data on projects that were allotted by the Municipality, the payments made and the quantum and speed of work. “Pragati has nothing to do with the Project Management needs of the Engineering department, as its role was to share information with the public, and keep a tab on contractors. It was very helpful to the Councillors, as we could compare budgets and check work updates, and even the public could make comments and share information.

26 July-1 Aug 2013

Progress Stalled

The closing of this site has ensured that monitoring has become cumbersome - almost impossible,” says Singh. It is important to have a portal like Pragati up and running, because projects worth a hundred crores are likely to be executed this year in ten Gurgaon villages, for which DPRs are ready. Nisha Singh says that about Rs 10 crores will be spent for Badshahpur, and in her own ward Rs 11 crores are to be spent for Samaspur village. “In such a scenario it is important that Pragati should have remained functional, so that the allotment, work, payments and quality could be monitored,” she says. She recalls how a resident of Samaspur had warned her about the sewage pipes being fixed without a proper cement base. “I checked the project photos uploaded on Pragati by the third party, and found that the problem was genuine,” says Singh. It is this real time information sharing that is being missed by the Councillors and the public. The Councillors argue that the portal also helped them in comparing budgets of different wards, and knowing how much they had got, and where it was being spent. A Councillor says that in view of there being no financial powers with the elected representatives in Gurgaon, it is tools like these that help them in getting feedback. A number of Councillors would cite the figures, and enquire on the status of projects in the House Meetings, says Nisha Singh. An official, who has worked closely with the implementation of Pragati, says that it enabled the projects to be monitored every fortnight. The projects could be compared, the delayed ones could be flagged and penalties for delay were also introduced. Rajpal had even ensured that no payment could be made for a project unless it was listed on this Portal. R.S

Rathee of Gurgaon Citizens Council says that the closure of Pragati has ensured that ready information is not available to the public. In his opinion the Project might be allotted to a ‘blue-eyed boy’ later in the year. Y.K Garg, a senior official of the Engineering department, however says that they are going to adopt a Project Management software, which is being successfully run by the state PHE department. “This Portal is more competent and useful to us as an organisation,” he asserts. Critics however scoff at such claims and argue that given the current state of competence of PHE, it will not be long before the entire idea of project monitoring through a Project Management software is dropped. All these issues are primarily related to the sharing (or not) of information with the public. An insider says that MCG wants to selectively share information and data on projects, and the monthly report that it had to submit to the third party running ‘Pragati’ did not go down well with the bureaucracy as well as the contractors. In the guise of introducing new software the agency would now like to share data as per convenience. A major strength of Pragati was that it was based on a ‘cloud platform’, with features such as real time collation of pictures, information and data from multiple sources, which could be displayed in easy-toread formats. The application accepted pictures taken by mobile phones, and the data was also geo-tagged. Singh says that had it been allowed to run for a couple of years it would have been possible to compare the work done at a single site in different years. “The cost of running this Project was just Rs 5 lakhs a month, which means spending Rs. 60 to 70 lakhs in an year to monitor a spend of Rs. 300 crores. This is a

minuscule amount, and I had raised this issue in the meeting of the House Committee as well,” says Singh. It is to be noted that top officials of Haryana government had appreciated the working of the Portal, and even suggested its replication in other parts of the State. MCG had even trained the Councillors, RWAs and NGOs in the use of the Portal, as well as on the GPS machines, to track the development work. At the time of launch, Rita Dalal, IT Manager, MCG had said that people will be trained to use this technology, and they would now be able to get all information online. Unfortunately, life has come full circle within a year and a half. Sanjay Sharma, a doctorate in IT, who has monitored several projects through this site, says that the public has no problems with the MCG bringing in a more sophisticated tool, but till the time it was ready,

C ivic Pragati should have been allowed to function. “I think this entire exercise is aimed at ensuring that information remains restricted in the public domain. The checks and balances that are brought in by IT systems are hard to break, and this had reduced the chances of ‘pilferage,” he asserts. The civil society in the City is meanwhile hopeful that this Project could get a fresh breath of life as the new Municipal Commissioner P.C Meena knows the governance fault lines in the City, and also has an engineering background. IT projects are not short term; what is required is a long term vision, and giving time for a user base to develop around the product. While MCG should be having a world class portal, it is going back in time and bringing in poor quality systems. Gurgaon based civic activists further say that they have decided to apprise the new Divisional Commissioner about the proposed moves by MCG, which are retrograde. “We are also going to file RTIs, to know who has given the contract to develop websites for urban local bodies, and on what terms,” they assert.u

Petitioning For Consideration { Abhishek Behl / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com

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group of City residents led by the Gurgaon Citizens Council )GCC) have filed a petition in the Punjab and Haryana High Court seeking relief for people living in the 900 metres disputed area around the Air Force Ammunition Depot. The residents have sought directions for either rehabilitation of the residents in a time-bound manner, or shifting of the Ammunition Dump elsewhere. The petition, filed by GCC, was heard by a Division Bench headed by Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, which adjourned the case and clubbed it with similar petitions to be heard on July 31. Around 2 lakhs people live in the densely populated but illegal colonies that have come up in the 900 metres area in the last two decades. As per the Central Government rules, no construction is allowed within this 900 metres area. However, in the last couple of years a large number of houses, shops and commercial establishments have been built in the area due to the slack monitoring (or connivance) – both by the government as well as commercial authorities. R.S Rathee of the Gurgaon Citizens Council says that till the time the matter is resolved by the government, basic amenities like drinking water, power connections, drains, lanes, schools and other municipal services should be made available to the residents. The petitioners said that around 12,000 families were living in the area in appalling conditions. A number of petitions have been filed in the Punjab and Haryana High Court by the residents of the area, demanding relief from the government. The locals have demanded that the Ammunition Dump be shifted to some other ‘safer’ location, or the limit of the restricted area be reduced to 100 metres, as has happened in Ambala as well as in Chennai. They also allege that the office of HUDA, as well parts of Maruti factory, also come within the restricted area, and therefore action should also be taken against them. Lekh Raj, a local resident, says that action should be first initiated against the high and mighty, and thereafter authorities should come after the weaker sections, who are the primary residents of the disputed area. u


26 July-1 Aug 2013

11

C ivic/S ocial

No Housing For Board In Realty City write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com

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esidents across Gurgaon always cry foul that the private developers, as well as government agencies such as HUDA and MCG, have failed to create adequate infrastructure as also not provided even basic civic services, which has made living difficult. However, an exception to this ‘failing norm’ is the Haryana Housing Board, which has come up tops as far as residents of Saraswati Vihar Chakarpur Housing Board Colony are concerned. Perhaps the small size of this Colony has ensured a good quality of infrastructure and maintenance in this area. The rest of the Housing Board colonies are being taken care of by HUDA and MCG, say officials. It is unfortunate that, despite its delivering better performance, the government of Haryana has curtailed the functioning of the Housing Board, particularly in Gurgaon. The Board has, over the decades, provided quality housing options to many residents, at prices far less than even those offered by HUDA. The increasing price of

{ Shilpy Arora/ FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com

T

he Icon is one of the few condominiums in Gurgaon that offers luxury in the heart of the City, with its large apartments, top security and premium amenities. It offers two types of apartments – Crown and Crest, with areas above 2,500 sq.ft. “The 18 and 20-storeyed buildings, which offer penthouses, were one of the first on the Golf Course Road. This Project is said to have set the standards for luxury apartments in the City,” says Nitya Swami, one of the firstsettlers in the Condominium and an active RWA member. Foreign-made sanitaryware provides a special touch to the living spaces. Automatic, electronically programmable curtain control, highintensity lights and burglar alarms make the apartments ‘smart homes’. “We moved to the City in 2007 and wanted to have a luxurious apartment on the Golf Course Road, as my husband works in Dell and I too have my office on the Golf Course Road. It took time, but we realized that after Aralias, The Icon is the new luxurious address on the Golf Course Road,” says Smita, a resident. A large swimming pool, with

land in the Millennium City, and the preference given to private developers, is described as the main reason for the sidelining of the Housing Board, reveal insiders. Ch. Zile Singh, President of the Saraswati Vihar Chakarpur RWA, says that the Colony has been provided with adequate infrastructure by the Housing Board, and they do not face any basic problems. “We have adequate drinking water, through a canal water connection, as well as five tube wells. Even in the summer we had little trouble,” says Singh. The Colony has 1,014 small and large plots, which were allotted in 1991, after the acquisition of land in 1986. It is a predominantly middle class Colony that is surrounded by the mega shopping malls of MG Road, condominiums like Sahara Grace, and an Ansal Colony. Satish Sangwan, a longtime resident, says that the Housing Board has been quite helpful. The Board has concretized the roads, which were in a shambles a couple of years ago, and this has also helped in resolving a major parking problem. Sangwan says that the local

RWA, in collaboration with the Housing Board, manages the garbage collection system. Not surprisingly, Saraswati Vihar is well connected with the master sewage network of HUDA. With MCG slowly assuming its role as the primary civic agency in the City, Housing Board officials say that they are waiting for MCG to take over the maintenance of Saraswati Vihar. Zile Singh says that they expect the quality of service to then further improve, though not many are so hopeful. Rakesh Kumar, a resident, says that the quality of service delivered

House Board Colonies in Gurgaon have come up in Chakarpur, Sectors 7, 9, 10, 17, 31, 32, 32A, 39, 40, 42, 43, 51, 52 and on Jharsa Road. The total number of plots and houses built by the Board are 4762 - of which units for the EWS are 1354, for LIG 1519, for MIG 271, for HIG 423, and for others 1195 units.

Iconic...inside

by the Housing Board is good because the number of houses is not very high, and the Board has an office in the Colony itself. “I don’t think this level of service will continue under the MCG, as it would have to look after the entire city – and already there are many issues outside.” H. Bannerjee, who has been living in the Colony for long, says that the parks are well maintained by the RWA. “The Housing Board charges very less maintenance fees, and yet the quality of service is fairly good,” he says. As per the Housing Board norms, large plot owners have to pay Rs. 220 as monthly maintenance fee, whereas the smaller plot owners have to pay Rs. 136 for every two months. The only grouse of the residents is the lack of a community centre, which forces them to go outside for organizing their functions, parties and meetings. Ch Zile Singh says that the Colony does not have enough land for this, but the matter is being pursued and some solution will be found in the near future. The Housing Board officials in Gurgaon opine that their role as a State-backed developer is

more or less curtailed in the City, and they are now more involved in building houses for the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) and BPL families. As per the rules, the private developers have been asked to hand over 5 per cent of their projects’ land to the Housing Board, for the construction of housing for the weaker sections. Real estate insiders say that reducing the role of HUDA and the Housing Board in Gurgaon has skewed the property market totally towards private real estate developers. There are therefore today no viable plot options for the lower middle and the middle class. A simple twobedroom flat costs nothing less than Rs. 75 lakhs in Gurgaon today – and even these are very limited. The non-participation of State players has also led to the mushrooming of a large number of unauthorized colonies in the City, which dangle properties at a lesser price point but have little civic facilities to offer. Further, the State government seems to discourage Group Housing Schemes, which has added to the shortage of reasonably priced apartments. u

get-togethers and parties. “What make The Icon an exciting place to live in is not just its facilities, but its people. We enjoy being together and celebrating,” says Smita.

dogs out of the condominium for a walk”, says Lily. The residents also get an ugly view from their balconies. “The four-crores apartment offers me a view of open drains, heaps of garbage and a row of shanties made by the construction workers,” smiles Richa, a resident. The problem of open drains has been there for quite a long time and has become worse now. The RWA fears that the stagnant water will contaminate the groundwater supply. These drains have also become a breeding ground for mosquitoes. “We have been writing to the authorities for more than one year, but no action has been taken so far,’ says Tiwari, one of the members of the RWA. u

Stagnant surroundings

a Jacuzzi section, is a highlight. Besides, there is a separate baby and dog pool adjoining the main pool. Unique ‘Laundromats’ in the lower basement of the buildings serve the laundry needs of the residents within the condominium itself. “Swimming pools and club houses no longer excite people. Even golf courses are not exceptional. It is therefore essential for a luxury condominium to have facilities like Jacuzzis, Integrated Business Centres, Concierge desks and in-house laundry, to name a few. We have also paid a lot of attention to detail, even in areas like plumbing, kitchen fittings and

interior décor,” says Archit Mahajan, one of the architects of the Project. As security seems to be a top agenda for many people, The Icon has more than 30 security staff for one complex, along with facilities such as 24X7 CCTV surveillance and a well-equipped play area for children. “A large house poses security challenges; so we chose The Icon, which offers not only foolproof security but also finesse and class,” says Lily Gorge, a resident who moved from the US in 2011. The RWA ensures that residents meet at least once a month, and thus organises many

Residents complain about open drains near the Condominium. They allege that the authorities have always turned a deaf ear to this important issue. “Despite our Condominium offering the best facilities in the City, people are forced to breathe foul air and live in unhygienic conditions, because of the open sewage drain near the Condominium. It also poses a threat for pedestrians and animals - I usually take my

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themselves, Lancers groups, to experiences e of – “Studying share their over the capital. the City has an edge passionat wants to and perception is to the tag and the FG With Facebook find like-minded people. She y. He popular Facebook For instance, the most nce, in says. you only attracted she brings Special Astronom Groups, like-minded independe following people are just Group in They are Features onned Gurgaon Moms, not studies,” them is the City, a click away.” the: join Harvard, of his father. a newly-ope attracts abroad – is Fashion e has over 2,600 as compared college life student who chose India ure What Art Fair first choice members of Commerc the footsteps other hand, to Why Groups? of a the a glamorous in Architect open. “My Likewise, Delhi just 142 in Delhi Moms. Ram College options courses Kirti, on an example over Shri ...Pgs 12 & Facebook 7,000 children, keep her apply for while Gurgaon Teens has 626 members, one more 12 gives 13 Groups are in Australia Surajkund wants to more than will also make International comparison Teens has . But I unique in university for the Class in the y). There are members. Not abroad does Crafts to Facebook over 800 Designing only in terms Mela at first ,” she says. the City, appearingpreferences, plans are more personal, Pages. Groups (Delhi Universit feel studyingsister joined a university Gurgaonites of numbers, in mix of and Accounts also seem and members herself. Shewashing Some students change the my elder 250 schools is a heady to be regularly involved on can internal dynamic nt. “When the household chores in the from over ...Pg 17 the ion. There group conversation World to use independe Book of the Mittal, FounderFacebook groups. Shruti UK,” Fair feels to do all the Board Examinat – they she had much detergent of Gurgaon right to post, course in School. Her Club, says, “Members job UK, Moms Food know how e and comment have the during her and passion. of other and rising didn’t even she learnt it all are so on posts involved ...Pg 21 Group gets ion of the Cambridg over 10 updates active that the of several members. “I am Connect education facilities, still prevails, machine! But 12 student about the huge expense 50,000 to a day. 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Singapore up post-gradu and closer Do my college read, ponder of studying destinations – like undergra in the UK. a while, and enjoy high cost parents took on p 6 and act. it is cheaper Contd g different abroad, in Europe, abroad. While her has done his schooling studying considerin at Singapore because ...Pg 18 & 19 course have studied Europe, her brother siblings or cousins are sent to IB . am lookingcan join a medical in mainland students who have fact, some of them How much further India. You foreign university . In do we want to Most of the get into a for her HUDA and the divide our City? foreign university can easily IB school a nal State they for seem that aim this time bifurcating to be in an Express an internatio to ensure Women’s Help Desks the International the ‘new’ City hurry to do schools just parent, who chose HUDA/the State start Airport to the so – saving with a new ,a can call an Expressway DLF Road Project of Vanshika working on at Metro stations (only Rs. 500 driving time, for a fraction Golf Course”? Is a 20-minute integrating the a Sector Road). – crores - and of Gurgaon’s Rather than City, and its too of the State) counting? Is population, worth Helpline No.8130990 citizens, new Newer Gurgaon seem to be ensuring a Projects (that that side of the 20-minute saving worth 038 fragmentation. Civic further ‘controlled creating a Expressway? and Civil are Social, Society access’ and Security acres, in short supply and Community And why is New Age anyway; now to-Millennium this Expressway a thousand even there V, -in-a-rush City, are becoming alien words An area of project intersection no cross-traffic DLF Phase in this getSo say many allowed, on free? Why is There are many concerned citizens. in and around the spotlight a road that people living under is within City will want to CCTV has been limits? cross – frequently.on both sides, that today What gives year. 3,000 HUDA the right cross, and for over a picture Are we going public road? to privatize to not learn? capture the / FG } repeat the a cameras on the You would have Will we mess of NH8 { Maninder Dabas sampled Friday On paper the happening The - with jam-packed entries and Project is being of what is exits; Gurgaon during ago, Vivek a new HUDA-DLF even within. presented as the year. even pedestrian and horrible accidents to was roads, and ot so long and deaths? connected is an Expressway Sector Road. In reality Here is your chance changed) it Control Room, is at the DLF to get to nowhere to ride (name For DLF it is – except DLF. Police, your doorstep every FG at and used And in modern, an was Gurgaon sixteen, global times, high leases and Expressway to high rentals, When he Friday, at a very attractive forgotten the bicycle. why have we high Golf Club. asked ...Pg 8 non-motorized property values rate. he an Atlas properties in thought for ? – for its eighteen, its 52 issues (1 Year), public transport There is even no Chetak – turning HUDA to invest Phases. And it has convinced stands), needed for a Bajaj (bus, auto, (Two Hundred) Only for ` 200 ed. at least Rs. 200 taxi by people wishing his father seemingly public, – a Saving of crores for this was admonish be a point within ` 164 on cover price. but surely more soon the Road to another.to move from but instead project – worth FOBs and Subways a private, Caged Freedom you may are not for ASHA PANDEY In well fact over Rs. 500 even liberation ‘Legally at a time when are supposedly in crores. This, thought (if , but you Looking for HUDA has not an afterthought of even SMS FGYES to 08447355801 permitted to handle a motor girls and women water, power, provided even the expected decades, issued sewage, other basic infrastructure City are now are excessive noise yet). What about yet ready said his father. and has yet to roads, streetlights Sendchallans to were well within city (for be removed and this Millennium of provide detailed t, as they attracting etc.) across Gurgaon; 14,000 an emailbeen limits? The green air pollution, vehicle,’ from in front it has used the answers on how three years subscription@f than and have kids facing confinemen next of s belt may EDC more the goons will bicycle ridaygurgaon.c these the and where and houses in Phase not even be good by also For the new Gurgaon taken from us over decades when Last year driving. “Machineattraction for om keep I. Yes, this Project or appreciated the same daily targeted on the roads II sectors (58 would - and still taking the Pay Onlineparents The Bajaj by current DLF college, at to 115). our Family purpose. for lumpen elements for underagecenturies, andwww.fridaygurg residents. times our What is the sanctity transport. for served his cars on we obtained Is this a exist today, . In older aon.com of Master Plans? and in public lifestyles are prime example the time doesn’t bikes and exposed a humans all abnormal When was the Deliverytill Chetak of the squander kind of fathers. vehicles to kids are change boys drive Where in the willthese decision taken not having not at be those old routines and is through motor do And of about year This needs the world is there public money? your one why, and by to make this real now from and nor part of the sixteen an Expressway Road – in this think twice or even at schools, age. The the change ly. being impacted. us away after. But newspaper City, and that (and even those whom? A Northern and that cuts through Today, many – and aggressive an early vendor. They don’t and even has at Highway? And Southern Peripheralform? , and are not Expressways) Circulated be stopped s roads. a but an Expressway malls, theatres, cars and bikes Why licence, ...Pg 9 that just seems more lanes than a nearby why the only in Gurgaon. and speed, level of parenting Road Gurgaon’ This At markets, to be National vehicles, is a Project and that’sContd on kids driving broken roads. within the City?! circling the City make p7 the licence. that will impose for the benefit of a single status; this to sense – on place at driving of under-age after digging Special offer builder. a 16 lane high-speed economic speeds, even believe that doingfear? has taken hundreds up Is this a precedent ` 300 for 6 months for rest of NCR: can find social and no lightning Expressway, Gurgaon’s best) already wide (wider than (Delivery through in the that one down at their parents,no rationality, courier) privatization The Metro NH8), decent road stretch. tearing and that as well as road, when almost of public property wants to set for other Why the priority (arguably Life Near just 2 no morality, builders? A is a crime, in the garb of do the children, Is there driving Was the Vision every other road in Gurgaonand urgency for this Swanky concourses stations a partnership? – or be killed? or right? the Metro Ps - the State for this Project is worse? that under-age someone is fine – years ago, Govt needs as follows: “just by not aware could even kill Road, if and engulfed 20 minutes from Are they when completed, to unequivocally state ghters today are dens. that this new will always remain and crime their sons/dau cesspools ...Pg 24 a public road.

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12

K id C orner

26 July-1 Aug 2013

Artistic Strokes

Kids Brainticklers

Anusha Goenka, MRIS, Sector 46

Somishte Watia, MRIS, Sector 49

Solutions

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

Vedika Saini, MRIS, Sector 46


26 July-1 Aug 2013

K id C orner

13

Goenka Uplifts

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he students of G.D Goenka World School embarked on a mission ‘Lift Uttarakhand’, to collect items to help the Uttarakhand victims. They were aided by the Central Reserve Police Force, Sohna. The students, armed with boxes, visited several residential complexes of the City for this collection drive. The response they received was overwhelming – more than 100 people donated generously to the cause.

Is Uttrakhand’s Tragedy Really Over?

I

t was raining since morning. I got worried as I had to leave on 16th June night to Binsar via Almora. This summer my family had planned to feel the coolness and the beauty of the Himalayas. But who knew what life had in store. Many tourists might have planned like us. It was raining cats and dogs when we left at night from Gurgaon. We didn’t stop on the way as we wanted to cover most of the area during the night only. In the midst of rains we reached Khairana and were shocked to see that roads to Almora were closed due to heavy landslides. The roadside river was flowing above the danger level with gushing waters pouring down from everywhere. For the first time I had witnessed nature’s fury in my life. There were heavy traffic jams. My grandmother took the right decision of going to Almora via the longer route of Ranikhet and Kosi. The roads were full of debris, and slippery. We had to drive 200kms extra. On the way we heard of the tragedy that had happened at the shrine of Kedarnath. The flash floods and landslides in Uttrakhand have devasted entire towns and villages, destroyed roads, bridges and communication links and severely damaged the shrine. The government, Army, NGOs and locals had come forward for the rescue operation to control the situation. Today, one month is over and media also have minimum coverage of the situation, but the question arises whether Uttrakhand’s tragedy is really over? I think it has started now because while life has been saved of the uprooted ones, but what next? Where they are going to live? What will they be doing to run their houses? The pain and agony they are going through will not let them forget that the tragedy is over. Their future is at stake. It might take years to forget the fury of nature. I think we all should realize that this could happen with anybody, anywhere. We should come forward to make them settle down and help them by giving love and providing resources.

Madiha Bakshi, VI A

Ryan MUN

R

yan International School, Sohna Road organised the Ryan MUN (Model united Nations) 2013. The Event had various Committees – General Assembly, World’s Anti Doping Agency, Human Rights Counciland Economic and Social Council. It also held the Agronaut-Yalta Conference, wherein the delegates posed as Franklin D. Roosevelt, Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin – the ‘winning’ heads of government who held the Yalta Conference after World War II. It was a learning experience for all the students―who participated as delegates, reporters and cartoonists― to understand the importance of the UN. Retired Secretary General to the Govt. of India and Legion D’Honneur 2009 awardee M. Varadarajan presided over the Event as the Chief Guest.


14

K id C orner

26 July-1 Aug 2013

CBS Council

T

he Investiture Ceremony was held at the School premises. Sangeeta Saxena, Principal, conferred the designation of Head Boy to Bhavishya Bhatt and the designation of Head Girl to Ria Bajaj. The School Captains—(boys) Ekansh Sharma and (girls) Kadbmini Pandey—were presented sashes. Badges and sashes were also presented to the Deputy Head Boy, Karan Dutta and the Deputy Head Girl, Nikita Dua. Pandey. The ceremony concluded with the school song.....ChiIranjiv Ke Tarun Sepai........

Life Long CBS Learners

A

Workshop on e-learning was organised at Chiranjiv Bharti School, Palam Vihar, by ‘Life Long Learners’. The Workshop included discussions on curriculum-based e-learning material, and also guided the parents and teachers on individual tutoring and mentoring, real time examination and interactive activities. The importance of using specialised learning tools, and specific notes and videos to understand concepts, was also discussed.

Srishti Learns

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merican Public School organised a Workshop for 15 teachers of Srishti, an NGO that provides education to the underprivileged children of Kishengarh. The Workshop, which focused on making the Montessori curriculum interesting, was conducted by the American Public School teachers. This initiative was taken by Dr. Nidhi Trehan, Assistant Director of the School.

Literary Flourish

BOOKS

Ryan Develops Leaders

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yan International School, Sector 40 organised a Workshop on ‘Inculcating Leadership Skills’. The Speaker, Arun Kumar Roy, addressed the students on the qualities of a good leader. The students were advised on time management, attitudes, interpersonal relationships and the necessity of team work. The students were also advised to treasure the value of time.

Books are everyone’s friends, Someone buys and someone lends. Everybody loves reading, It’s better than spoon feeding. Some are mystery, some chemistry. Some adventure, some culture. Some of wildlife and some are of folk & knife. Some dictionary and some are introduction to Pictionary. Some are fiction and some addiction. Some biography, some are auto-biography. Some of plants, some are introduction to France. Some of phone calls; some are of maps to malls. Some are classic, some are guides to Nasik. And if I name them all, you’ll surely get bored, That I can’t afford. I too love reading books, Thankfully these have good looks! -Shivani Ahuja


K id C orner

26 July-1 Aug 2013

DPS Health Workshop

15

I would like to share my memorable experience in this summer vacation

G

randparents are very special people who give you wise advice. Some activities are really fun to do with grandparents. The activity that I enjoyed the most this summer was playing chess with my Nanaji, Jayendrabhai Kakubhai Badiyani, in Gujarat.We had a lot of fun. According to him, playing chess is very beneficial for all age groups as it enhances memory power, increases concentration levels, enhances our decision making skills as well as problem solving skills.

D

elhi Public School, Sushant Lok, organised a Workshop on Cervical Cancer for the teachers. The Workshop was conducted by Dr. Dinesh Gupta, Director of CureHealth Diagnostics, who sensitised the staff members on health problems. The Workshop provided an insight to the ‘silent symptoms’ of cervical cancer and apprised the attendees of the benefits of early detection of the disease. Dr. Ruchi Seth, Principal, said, “We organised this Workshop to keep our staff safe, secure and educated about the diseases that can attack us anytime.”

Banyan Shows-and-Tells

The RWS Spell

A

nshika Khanna of Class VII A of Rabindranath World School (RWS), did the School proud by securing 6th rank at the International SpellBee Competition, Category (IV), organised by MARRS International. MaRRS Spelling Bee is the largest self-motivated spelling competition in Asia for school children.

This knowledge from Nanaji helped me to earn a beautiful prestigious award in the District Chess Championship (Open) held at “American Public School in June. While receiving the Award, I was overwhelmed with joy as it was my 1st Chess Competition, in which all age groups and many rated players had participated. I was the youngest participant and won 3 points in 6 rounds. All present at the Event congratulated my parents. I want to thank my mother who taught me chess, Nanaji for making me a champion and my Chess teacher Navin Sir for inspiring me to participate in the Competition.

Taksheel Buddhadeo, Class 2, Amity International School, Sec 46

T

he tiny tots of Banyan Tree School participated in a Show-and-Tell activity. The little ones came with pictures and paintings of their family members and spoke proudly about them. The teachers and parents enjoyed this entertaining activity immensely.

The Holidays are over... but your creativity isn’t.

Literary Flourish Paintings

“MY Lord in Guise” We all need time to be alone, to think, to dream to wonder, Life goes on and on with lots of thunder we all are sailing in the same boat in heaven we”ll meet with same lord, Hence life is a circle with numerous miracles he is one who helps us in Disguise Accept it what he is giving you in Surprise. 

stories poems

For children – write a poem, an article, a fictional story or even a real life experience. See it published in Friday Gurgaon – make your teachers and parents proud! For teachers/administrators/co-ordinators – here’s a chance to pen down your experiences, teachings and learnings. Send us your contributions (300-350 words).

Chaynika Vats

For information, Call us at 0124-4219092/93 Or email at anita.bagchi@fridaygurgaon.com


16

26 July-1 Aug 2013

C omment

Zoned-out State B

EDITORIAL Atul Sobti

LAUGHING STOCK Finally...the first arrest in the Bofors Case.... Quatrocchi - by Cardiac Arrest.

eware, those who govern. Uprisings will not now be just of the general public. Our action, reaction on workers’ protests may have come full circle. In the name of development and growth, we are unashamedly taking the side of capital – versus labour. This, at a time when most business leaders proudly proclaim that they are people driven; and when truly we should have realized that it is people who really make the difference. Maybe we just do not (and probably never did) understand manufacturing – and have not considered workers in our definition of ‘people’. In the last few years, when times have been bad, especially for labour, it is surprising that govts (esp. Haryana) have virtually abandoned the labour force. It is so evident in Gurgaon. With industry shrinking, and even the much-touted ‘model industrial township’, Manesar - or even the ‘new’ HSIIDC Industrial Policy - not able to attract industry, the State seems to have realized much too late that it is heavily dependent on Maruti and other major manufacturing units, for tax revenue and employment (though further investment has long dried up). The State’s favourite boys, the IT and BPO sector, are caught in a global slowdown. That is why the State now seems willing to take any action to ‘soothe’ and ‘motivate’ the big auto majors. How else does one explain an imposition of Section 144 on a once-in-a-year protest rally by Maruti workers – while also disallowing them from protesting outside the factory premises. What a knee-jerk reaction. Is the State so afraid of Maruti (definitely not the workers)? Is the State unable to see the consequences of labour unrest? Are democratic rights only applicable for a section of people? Are organized workers not seen to be an organized vote bank? Is the govt waiting for that to happen first – and then act after things begin to go out of control? The workers may have dispersed, but their fight is far from over. They clearly have a right to feel frustrated in not even having been given a simple right to protest, forget having their demands accepted - for the release of 147 colleagues from jail, reinstatement of about 2,300 colleagues who were allegedly terminated on an ad hoc basis, and the right to start or join a union. Even after a full year, there is no real movement in the legal case. Why have over 50 workers not yet been arrested? Is it State patronage for the chosen few? Has Maruti no problem with this; what if these 50-odd turn out to be the ‘main’ guilty? What is the purpose of delaying, or stalling or showing force? We must remember that many of the workers are locals from Gurgaon and Haryana, and most are young. They, their families and friends will also vote. The

State had even gone to the extent of roping in local village Panchayat heads, who had then asked the DC to ensure that a worker protest did not take place. What audacity ! Thousands of workers have for years propped up these local village economies – through payment for rent (now truly exorbitant), transportation and various monthly household requirements. And this is happening at a time when the Centre has put out a 10-year National Manufacturing Policy envisioning National Investment & Manufacturing Zones (NIMZs). We clearly can never be a manufacturing force if we cannot even manage a most valuable resource that can make or break productivity levels. Haryana’s loss will be Gujarat’s and others’ gain. Tata has bid hello to Gujarat. It’s a matter of time before others do too. Hero has anyway deleveraged through Haridwar; Honda has, too. Maruti will, soon enough – how many times will it protest or threaten? SEZs have also failed in Haryana – including the most hyped one of Reliance. From 46 approved and 37 notified SEZs, 6 were started, 4 are running – and none will probably remain ! But we never learn – or maybe we only know how to twist and scam. Now the SEZ players are being helped out by allowing them liberal norms for residential and commercial areas, with a reduction in the area for manufacturing! This, after giving them an earlier benefit of being able to convert the SEZs into industrial colonies and cyber parks. The Master Plans have been accordingly tweaked. The SEZ land should instead have just been returned to the original owners, the farmers, once the scheme stood cancelled. The objective clearly does not seem to be about maximizing manufacturing, but maximizing the income for realtors. How can a State ever develop on this basis? NIMZs are destined to go the way of SEZs here. Haryana would have the dubious distinction of having been unfair to both its farmers and its workers. It’s time to call this ‘Haryana (HSIIDC) Land Scam in the guise of Manufacturing’ bluff. It’s time to also call the bluff of any industry, even a large one, which threatens to move out. Land cost cannot really be a deal, or location, breaker - and definitely not for an existing plant. And what about Maruti’s role vis-a-vis people? Are they now even afraid to talk to their own (ex)workers? How many years would they allow them to be held within the confines of a jail – without due process, or any progress in the trial? Where is the feeling for fairness and justice? Does Corporate Social Responsibility not apply in-house, and does it stop?u


W ellness

26 July-1 Aug 2013

Health & Vitality... Naturally!

The Time to Eat { Jaspal Bajwa }

D

oes the time of day matter when we consume food? Till recently, science tended to favour the view that there is no clinical evidence to prove the popular advice: “eat breakfast like a king and dinner like a pauper”. However, a recent report in the International Journal of Obesity has tilted the balance in favour of the traditional lore. The study suggests that people who delay their lunch (and in Spain that is the main meal of the day) stand a significantly reduced chance of managing their weight. Ancient healing traditions, both Ayurveda as well as Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), have never had any

doubt on this score. The underlying logic is simple and elegant. It makes sense for us to ‘flow’ along with the natural circadian rhythms of our body, and Nature. Regularity of meals is therefore extremely important. The body thrives on regular patterns of breathing, sleeping, exercising and eating. Once established, the body recognizes the patterns and prepares the grounds for the optimal functioning of the organs. Several studies have confirmed that a pattern of 4-5 evenly spaced nourishing ‘mini-meals’, every three to four hours, helps us get the most out of food. The key to weight management is to effectively metabo-

Silent Epidemic { Dr. Satish Koul }

One of the common misconceptions is that most liver diseases are alcohol related. However, the liver, a crucial organ of the body, can be affected by a series of deadly infections – even outside of blood tranfusions. The infection can also be carried through objects like the saliva of the first eater, to the second person sharing an apple. Water, food & even the atmosphere are common carriers of the Hepatitis virus.  Every year July 28 is marked as “World Hepatitis Day”. The World Health Organization (WHO) has carefully chosen the theme for this year; moving from awareness, to commitment and action, to address the “silent epidemic” of viral Hepatitis. The Hepatitis virus is even more deadly than HIV virus, because it can go undetected for years.  According to WHO, “Hepatitis viruses A, B, C, D and E can cause acute and chronic infection and inflammation of the liver, leading to cirrhosis and liver cancer. These viruses constitute a major global health risk, with around 240 million people being chronically infected with Hepatitis B, and around 150 million people being chronically infected with Hepatitis C.” Hepatitis, derived from hepar, the Greek word for “liver”, is an inflammation and infection of the liver. “Viral hepatitis is caused by seven different known viruses in medical science.”

lize what we eat, eliminating waste efficiently and letting the digestive system get a break between meals. In TCM, the stomach and spleen are considered to be most active from 7am to 11 am. Similarly, in Ayurveda, it is believed that as the sun climbs higher in the sky so do the digestive fires (‘Agni’). There is an unequivocal emphasis on breaking the overnight fast with a master cleanse drink, followed by a hearty breakfast. As most busy urbanites tend to skip or rush through a breakfast, it is important that they have a wholesome and early lunch. In addition to the right time, it also matters how we prepare and consume our food. Do we do it with reverence … or merely as an ‘eat to live’ quick fix … constantly shackled to the treadmill of busy urban life? There is

clear evidence that our body digests food best when we relax, eat slowly, and maintain the right frame of mind in the right company.

Tip of the Week

One of the healthiest ways to avoid binge-eating or strong cravings, is to enjoy light nourishing snacks during the day. A great idea is to have “Finger-Food Veggies” like celery, carrots, grape tomatoes, broccoli and snow peas. These are so portable – simply drop a few in a plastic bag, and munch on the go. Nature’s Wonder Food of the Week – Cucumber or Kheera or Cucumis sativus Cucumbers are an astringent, alkaline and cooling food. Their origin dates back several thousand years to India, and cucumber has now become the fourth most cultivated vegetable in the world.

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Cucumbers are indeed a super-food. They are not just a welcome summer pick-me-up and a rehydrating agent, but also an excellent aid for treating acne and skin tone, as well as serious conditions such as cardiovascular and diabetic diseases - and even some cancers. Thanks to their low calorie and high fibre and water content, cucumbers are ideal for people who wish to manage their weight, eliminate toxins and regularize their bowel movements. Fresh cucumber extract is an excellent source of flavonoid antioxidants and the anti-inflammatory Vitamin K (1 cup = 21% of Daily Value). Cucumbers are a very good source of Manganese and the enzyme-cofactor Molybdenum. Vitamins A, B1, B5, B6, C, D, Folate and heart-healthy Potassium and Magnesium are present in good quantity. As an excellent source of silica, cucumbers help promote joint health by strengthening the connective tissues. Cucumbers are often sprayed with pesticides, so it is important to buy organic - or even better, grow some in your own garden. Health & Vitality ... Naturally !For Education purposes only; always consult a Healthcare Practitioner for medical conditions.u Registered Holistic Nutritionist (Canadian School of Natural Nutrition) For education purposes only; always consult a healthcare practitioner for medical conditions

About Hepatitis

Symptoms

Vaccine

Hepatitis A- is the most harmless virus of the lot. It is caused by HAV, and is popularly known as Jaundice. We are much aware of Jaundice, and know that contamination in food & water are the prime reasons for the infection. Precaution is better than cure – and so the best way to prevent Jaundice is to be careful of what ever you put in your mouth. Avoid unpacked or unsealed food or drink.

Inflamed liver, no desire for food, nausea, vomiting and fever.

The vaccine is easily available. It can be taken by anyone above the age group of 1 yr. There are two doses given to the individual, at a 6 months interval. Once the vaccine is taken it can protect you for at least 20 yrs. Caution: if there is any reaction to the vaccine, consult your doctor before taking it again.

Hepatitis B- According to the World Health Organization (WHO), HBV has infected one in three people around the world. This virus can go undetected for decades, leading to irreversible liver damage. This virus is commonly infected through blood, saliva, unprotected sex and from mother to fetus. Cuts are very frequent during shaving, so it is advisable not to share the razor; the blood may dry, but the virus can live for seven days.

This virus can later on lead to cirrhosis. The common symptoms are frequent stomach pain, skin rashes and dark urine.

Newborn babies must be immunized within 72 hrs of birth, and the three injections can be given at 0, 1 and 6 yrs. It will provide immunity up to 25 years.

Hepatitis C- This deadly virus can go undetected for up to 20 years, and can lead to fibrosis, chronic cirrhosis and scarring of the liver. Infection comes through blood transfusion. Scientists are not sure that Hepatitis C can pass through sexual contact. Tattooing with unsterilized needles, and various beauty treatments, are a definite route of transmission of Hepatitis B & C. If the spa or salon does not use stringent sterilization techniques, clients may be exposed to the virus.

Poor appetite, nausea, disturbed sleep and depression; jaundice

Unfortunately this virus does not have any vaccine.

Hepatitis D- This virus hitches a ride on Hepatitis B; so it is clear that only those who have been infected by Hepatitis B can be infected by Hepatitis D also.

Fatigue, vomiting, slow fever, dark urine and light stool.

The vaccine used for Hepatitis B can also be used here.

Hepatitis E- This virus can transmit through the oral route. Hepatitis E is more serious than Hepatitis A in terms of complications & outcomes.  

Appetite and weight loss, nausea, enlarged and tender liver; jaundice.

Unfortunately this virus does not have any vaccine.

Hepatitis F & G- this virus is hypothetical and the suspect virus has been studied since 1990 only. Consultant, Internal Medicine Columbia Asia Hospital


18

A Silva Lining

{ Bhuvana Shridhar }

power within our reach.

T

he Silva Method is the name given to a self-help program developed by Jose Silva, which claims to increase an individual’s IQ and sense of personal well-being through relaxation, and by developing the higher brain functions. Proponents believe that it can also improve a person’s self-image, allow him/her to think in a clearer manner, and can assist in even overcoming drugs and nicotine addiction. The Silva Method’s goal is to help people awaken their mind’s natural healing ability, so that they can transform it from a trigger of disease to a catalyst for holistic well-being. How ‘Silva’ Works - The Universal Healing Principle The Silva method is based on the concept of healing both the body and the mind. The belief is that there is some underlying organ(s) and process(es) that is common. The organ is the subconscious mind, and its process of healing is faith. The Silva method lays emphasis on the alpha and beta levels, as well as on the powers of the subconscious mind. We spend our working hours at the beta levels; and if we continue to function from the beta zone we will use less than half of our mental faculties. We need to be operating from the alpha levels, to gain maximum benefit, and unlock the secrets of success. What exactly is the alpha state? Normally, when we are wide-awake and all our senses are active, the brain generates electrical impulses of 15 to 26 cycles per second, as recorded by an electroencephalograph. We are aware of our thoughts and feelings in the alpha manual mode, and are thus able to utilize our conscious state of mind artfully. Silva experts claim that this peaceful state of mind is akin to meditation. Some Silva graduates report a feeling of being both blissful and ecstatic. By moving into the alpha level frequently, you will be able to relax more easily and manage and control stress better. The theory emphasizes that this is indeed the key to the most awesome

{ Alka Gurha }

C

W ellness

26 July-1 Aug 2013

ranberries are evergreen small shrubs, botanically named Oxycoccus (of the genus Vaccinium). Just like mangoes, there are many varieties of Cranberries, with subtle differences in taste and flavour. The varieties differ in size, colour, keeping- quality, time of ripening, hardiness and suitability of the vine to certain climates. A similar fruit, native to India, is Karaunda. Cranberries are low shrubs, with slender, wiry stems and small evergreen leaves. The fruit is a berry that is initially white, but turns a deep red when fully ripe. It has an overwhelming acidic taste. Most cranberries are processed into products such as juice, sauce, jam and sweetened dried fruit. Raw

Heal Yourself Through The Power of Silva 1.  Remind yourself constantly and frequently that the healing process is in your subconscious mind, and try to use your alpha energies in a positive manner. 2.  Know that faith is like a seed planted in the ground; it grows after its kind. Plant the seed in your mind, nourish it with expectancy and it will manifest. 3.  Believe in the reality of your idea, plan or invention; as you do that, it will manifest. 4.  All diseases originate in the mind; nothing appears on the body unless there is a mental pattern corresponding to it. So you can easily heal yourself by thinking positively. 5. The symptoms of almost any disease can be induced in you by hypnotic suggestion; and this shows the power of thought. 6. You can heal most of your problems through the power of the subconscious mind, by having faith. Your subconscious responds to thoughts in your mind; look upon your thoughts - that will suffice. 7. The Visualisation method or technique: when you formulate an idea you should visualise it - see it in your mind’s eye as vividly as if it were alive. 8. The Affirmative method is determined largely by your understanding of the truth, and the meanings that underlie the words you utter. To affirm is to state that it is so; and as you attain this attitude of mind, regardless of all evidence to the contrary, you will receive an answer to your prayers. The power of your affirmation lies in the intelligent application of definite and specific positives. 9. What you decree and feel as true will definitely come to pass. Decree harmony, health and abundance. 10. With practice of being in the alpha levels, you will build confidence to do the things you never dared to do in your life. 11. Overcome phobias, compulsions and bad habits. 12. Develop friendships and enhance relationships with co-workers, family and friends.u Tarot Reader, Author

Red & Healthy Cranberry is being marketed as a ‘wonder’ fruit, due to its antioxidant qualities. Raw Cranberries also provide nutrients like Vitamin C and digestion-aiding enzymes.

Cranberry and Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

A recent study suggests that Cranberries can help women maintain a healthy urinary tract - by drinking a glass of Cranberry cocktail twice a day. Its anti-adhesion benefits start within two hours

of consumption, and can last for up to 10 hours. It was believed that the ability of Cranberry juice to help prevent UTIs was due to their strong acidity. However, research now shows that it’s the unusual nature of their Pro-Antho-Cyanidins (PACs). The special structure of PACs acts as a barrier to bacteria, and prevents them from attaching to the lining of the urinary tract. It is now being researched whether Cranberries can also help prevent the attachment of bacteria to our stomach lining. For people suffering from recurrent kidney stone formations, Cranberry juice acts as a supplement food; it acidifies the urine, so as to prevent the aggregation of calcium-forming stones.

{ Krishan Kalra }

Hooted Down

I

ndians – especially of the Northern variety – have a penchant for using the horn. They seem to get a sense of power from pressing the infernal thing that produces all kinds of sound pollution. Some of them even instal weird-sounding “musical” contraptions. Most of the time it’s an aimless exercise, because the guy in front is stationary due to something ahead of him... and so on. No one would want to just stay on the road, but we refuse to understand. Yes, you might need the device while overtaking – during the day – or to warn an unwary pedestrian or even a stray animal but most of the time it’s sheer habit that makes our hooting heroes – nay hooligans – just lean on the knob ! I was first chastised – about this nasty habit – way back in the mid-Sixties, by an American. He was on a business visit and my boss asked me to take him to Agra. I had a brand new FIAT 1100 - acquired for all of Rs. 14,700 ‘on the road’ - and I loved to drive. We had a great day zipping on the highway, doing the sights, lunch at the good old Clarks Shiraz. Just when I was dropping him at the hotel, my friend thanked me for the trip and added “You know Krish, the amount of horn you’ve blown during the day is more than what I’ve done in my 30 years of driving! I use the damned thing only to scare my wife when I get back home in the evening and she is watering the lawn or something.” Well, I learnt my lesson and, I think, to this day I’m a very frugal user of the blasted accessory. However, I would think most NCRwalas won’t reform so easily. They need some one more vocal, like this huge lady from the British High Commission, whom I heard narrating her experience at a party some years ago. I quote: “There I was, near Lok Nayak Bhavan next to Khan Market in New Delhi, waiting to cross Subramaniam Bharti Marg. Even though the light was red the driver behind me kept pushing his horn intermittently. I was annoyed but kept my cool. As the light turned green I pressed the clutch, and was yet to change gears when this guy started blowing incessantly. I couldn’t take it any longer; I pulled my hand brake, got out of the car, strode up to this horn-happy impatient driver, yanked open his car door, caught the puny little fellow by the scruff of his collar and literally lifted him out of his seat. The poor chap’s eyes were virtually out of their sockets; he was speechless as I gave him a long lecture on road manners, civic sense, noise pollution and all that. Suddenly all the drivers behind him also stopped hooting. They couldn’t believe what they were seeing. This big fat white woman was holding a little pipsqueak by the neck and reprimanding him loudly. Soon I put him down with a stern warning. I don’t think the guy – in fact all those in the queue behind him – would’ve ever used the blessed thing again.” The story—even if somewhat exaggerated and dramatised—was sweet music to my ears. I’ve narrated it perhaps a hundred times. I only wish we had more gutsy people like the feisty Britisher on the NCR roads.u

Antioxidants

Among fruits and vegetables rich in healthpromoting antioxidants, berries such as Cranberries rank at the top of the list. In disease-fighting antioxidants, Cranberries outrank most fruits and vegetables including strawberries, spinach, broccoli, red grapes, apples, raspberries and cherries. Recent research has shown that the anthocyanin content of Cranberries, that give berries their vibrant red colour, increases in direct proportion to the amount of natural sunlight striking the berry. The antioxidants in Cranberries can help rid our body of free radicals that contribute to the aging process. This will help our skin look younger, and our internal organs will also be able to function longer. Cranberries

contain Vitamin C and fibre - but only 45 calories per cup. Note that un-sweetened Cranberry juice is a lot more productive (than the sweetened ones available in the supermarkets). The sweetened varieties contain undesirable preservatives and natural sweeteners. Consuming Cranberry juice can irritate through heartburn, due to its high acidity. People who are diabetic, and those with sensitive stomachs,  should limit Cranberry juice consumption. In some cases, Cranberry juice has also been shown to  have a ‘side-effect’ with certain medications; a wrong combination of juice and medication may lead to internal bleeding. Always consult with your doctor, and ask specifically about drug and fruit juice interactions.u


B on V ivant

26 July-1 Aug 2013

{ Aditi Bhola }

H

aving introduced Graphic Novels the last week, this column features famous national and international Comics. The responsibility of making our kids read Comics carries an asterisk. How do we restrict their reading to an age-safe content – by knowing what they should read, and fencing their reach from the adult, dark and violent stuff? Most of the famous Comics that children indulge in today have their movie adaptations. Movies such as Batman, Spiderman, Scott Pilgrim vs the World and Iron Man are all based on Graphic Novels. Television shows like Chacha Chaudhary, The Walking Dead, Captain Vyom, Smallville, Shaktimaan and The Human Target have Comics in their genes. Here are five Comics/ Graphic Novels I recommend: n Diary of a Wimpy Kid, by Jeff Kenney n The Stonekeeper: Amulet, Book 1, by Kazi Kibuishi n Watchmen, by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons n Bone, by Jeff Smith n Geronimo Stilton’s and Thea Stilton’s series of picture books Geronimo Stilton’s 'A very Merry Christmas' is didactic. See how easily morals are inculcated in kid-readers by sentences like, “The wise mouse wastes

{ Prabha Prabhakar Bhardwaj }

F

lying has always fascinated human beings. Although no one knows when men started flying Kites, it is certain that these were the first form of manmade flying objects. The earliest record of flying Kites is around 200 BC, in China. It is assumed that Kites were brought to India by Chinese travellers. In Greek literature, there is a mention of Kite-flying as long back as the 14th.Century BC. Later on, the concept spread to Mongolia, Europe, Thailand and Japan. All Indian Kites have a similar basic structure, are made of tissue paper or some other thin material like silk, and are supported by bamboo-strips. Kite-flying is popular amongst all age groups, especially on Holidays, Sundays and Festivals. The tradition has been passed on from one generation to the other. The original concept has survived and grown into a major sport. Kite clubs have formed, and Kite festivals are organised, in which many nations participate. Another dimension has now been added to this hobby of flying, i.e. remote-

Novel Comics

neither time nor cheese”; “thousands of faces and traditions in one world.” 'A very Merry Christmas' enhances the vocabulary of young learners. Special text is written in different styles, colours and shapes. Geronimo Stilton has used a very smart way to improve the general knowledge of young readers. In the story, a character offers the readers detailed information and the history of New York City (including some facts that most people, including me, were ignorant about!). Places of interest in New York, the tale of exploration and colonialism and a small hand-drawn map of the entire City - all these provide a lingering visual flight

over the City. Along with an interesting storyline, it features a quick info-tag on any picture of historic/national importance. The language is absorbing. Comics and Comic-based television shows are helping cast off the stereotypes of gender discrimination that was perpetuated through ‘boy’ Comics and ‘girl’ Comics. Years ago, if a boy owned a ‘Powerpuff Girls’ or a ‘Rapunzel’, it meant he ‘liked girlish books’. The genres of today’s Comics are unbiased and neutral; or we can say that the tastes/ topics have become majorly unisexual. Pilot and Huxley, by Dan McGuiness, provides good reading for both girls and boys. Two best friends are

bonked by aliens, who intend to subjugate planet Earth. It is an ideal meld of funny, verbose and caricatured characters that tickle the funny bone! On similar lines is Jeff Smith’s Bone. Rated as one of the top ten Graphic Novels ever, by Time magazine, this is a typical saga of a not-sohero-looking superhero, who must save the valley from the vicious clutches of evil. Hilarious and action-packed, Bone has bagged multiple awards, including both the revered awards of the Comic industry- the Eisner Award and the Harvey Award. For middle-grade school-goers, Kazu Kibuishi’s Amulet serves an interesting unisexual readership. After a family tragedy, Emily, Navin and their mother move to an old ancestral home to start a new life. But this mysterious and uncanny house is infested with demons. This is discovered when the mother goes missing on the very first night. The Comic has the perfect 'masala' for a thriller readzombie-looking demons, a frightful night, a gullible and vulnerable mother, a mysterious basement and a magical world. “Five—no, three— pages of Amulet and you’ll be hooked,” says the Bone writer, Jeff Smith.

Passion Takes Flight controlled Helicopters and Aero planes. The first model aircraft was unearthed during an Egyptian excavation in 1898, at the Saqqara burial grounds. The archaeologists believed that the aircraft dated back to around 200 BC. Excerpts from an interview with Ranjeev C. Dubey, a Gurgaon based corporate lawyer, author, public speaker, business columnist, blogger and keen hobbyist. Here the focus is on the flying of Radio-controlledHelicopters. It is essential to understand the complexities of ‘Flying’ objects from an avid flyer’s perspective. What motivated you to fly Aero planes? My interest was sparked by model Helicopters, which are the hardest of all model craft to fly. It seems I jumped into the deep end. With no previous experience – or muscle memory of the controls – the hard part was to learn how to translate thought into finger

movement. It’s like learning to drive – only the response time is much much shorter. The impact of a mistake is much more dramatic. Having once learnt to fly Helicopters, I decided to fly fixed wings – which is where everyone starts. What aspect do you enjoy most? After the initial excitement of flying, almost everyone gets to a point where they build their own models from kits and plans. Eventually, those who go deep into the hobby, design

and scratch-build their own aircraft. This is the best and most fulfilling part of the hobby, and where I am doubtless heading. But not yet, since I am only two years into this hobby. Where do Gurgaonites fly? Most Gurgaonites fly at an ‘informal’ field south of Bhondsi village every Sunday morning – starting about 7 am, till about noon. What is your advice to aspirants? This is a hobby for tinkerers, Do-it-Yourself people who like to play around with things till they get them to work right. If you own a few tools and fix things at home, this hobby is for you. Next, this hobby is for those who are fascinated by flight. Third, this hobby has a very steep learning curve. If you have no patience, video games are better. That said, this is not a very difficult hobby. All you need is (a) muscle

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For your teen girl with beauty issues, you can lay your hands on the autobiographical Smile, by Raina Telgemeier – featuring braces, a tooth problem, boy-problems and pain-inthe-arse friends. It echos the typical middle-grade issues, transporting even adults to those fun-filled yesteryears. The series of Comics by Jeff Kinney, under the title 'Diary of a Wimpy Kid' would attract any kid, for their handwritten-notes describing daily adventures. The series became a supernova, making Kinney one of the winners in Time Magazine’s list of ‘100 Most Influential People’ in the world. The market is flooded with games, toys and dolls of the characters in the Comics. It's like the contagious Pokemon mania that caught many kids. Indian comics aren’t devoid of mythical characters and their sagas. Wonderful graphic illustrations and attractively-coloured gods and goddesses are helping the younger generation remember their own mythology and religious subtleties. Comics' series like Amar Chitra Katha, and many from the houses of Diamond Comics and Twinkle Digest Series, regularly launch new volumes. u Writer is a Asst Prof., Dept.of English Delhi University motor memory, and (b) basic construction and repairing skills. To build motor muscle memory in your hands, purchase a Flight Simulator (Real Flight or Phoneix), and practice on a computer. If you are able to keep a flying machine in the air and still enjoy it after one month, then please buy, borrow, build or steal a small airplane – and go for it. Finally, to learn Helicopters right away, you need real grit and determination. It may be preferable to start with fixed wings and take it from there. An initial flying budget for one reasonably acceptable fixed wing model, with one 4 channel transmitter is Rs. 5,000. Do not buy cheap Chinese toys. They will leave you frustrated, and make you exit early from the hobby. The initial flying budget for one Micro Helicopter with transmitter is Rs. 6,000.” There is a lurking danger that an innocent Hobby may be transformed into a threat. Like Kites have been used in wars to send signals to the troops, it is feared that in the future Radiocontrolled toy planes may be used to carry bombs.u


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26 July-1 Aug 2013

{ Dr. Rajesh Bhola }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon.com

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hen we experience trouble, it can go either way with us. We may become alienated and isolated, or we may grow as people. Experience should broaden us; difficult experiences should challenge us. The victory is in our being enlightened, rather than defeated by the various situations of life. All of us will assuredly meet with pain, failure and affliction. Everyday I see special children toiling very hard in moving on the ramp, inch by inch, for attending their special education classes. Some children take about 30 minutes to reach the first floor, due to the unco-ordinated movement of their limbs. When some children were taken for a picnic to the nearby resort on NH 8, a spastic child confided in me, through fumbling words and a melancholy face, that he did not like going to public places as the people around just stare at him. He added, “There are very few who come close to me, to try and feel the pain and anguish I am going through. Till this age of 14 I have not known how to stand independently, how to eat with my hands and how to clap. The moment I feel like shouting in excitement my neck goes one way and my arms and legs go the other way.” Many children like this child face great hardships in their lives. Of course the most difficult afflictions to bear are often psychological and social, rather than physical.

You Can Fight Depression We all meet with setbacks that can throw us into a state of depression. The down periods can be brought on by a change of weather, a broken heart, a fever - or even for no particular reason. We mope around, listen to sad music and feel sorry for ourselves. A black mood starts to hang over us. Thankfully, these moods normally go away within a couple of days. However, some do fall prey to a serious kind of depression, which is called clinical depression. It is a serious condition, an illness – and is comparable to a ‘down mood’ as much as a sneeze is comparable to pneumonia. It can affect appetite, sleep patterns and powers of concentration - and even slow down movement and speech. While the predominant feeling a depression brings is often sadness or a blue mood, it can also be a numb, empty feeling, fuelling anxiety, hopelessness and loss of self-esteem – or even an inability to take decisions. Unlike a passing mood, clinical depression dominates a person’s life and brings it to a screeching halt. The number one cause of suicide is untreated depression. People with chronic depression need treatment. Unfortunately, such people at times do not visit a doctor; probably because they are told so by society, well-meaning family and friends; they also have their own misconceptions of mental illness - that depression is just a mood that they should

be able to control. They do not believe that this is a lifethreatening illness, and believe that it can be managed by happy talk and an upbeat demeanour. People try for years to defeat their undiagnosed depression by ‘reasoning it out’. It is like trying to treat diabetes by skipping dessert. It does not work, and it is dangerous for health. Depression can be caused by an undiagnosed illness such as heart disease, thyroid dysfunction, cancer, infectious diseases and immune/ autoimmune disorders. Depression can even be brought on by vitamin or mineral deficiencies, or prescription and over-thecounter drugs. If you do not treat depression as an illness and get yourself checked out by a physician or psychiatrist, you run the risk of leaving a serious illness undiagnosed. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms of depression, make an appointment to see a doctor. If you know someone who seems to be showing the symptoms, encourage him or her to see a doctor. Do not believe the myth that we can handle depression on our own.

Depression is an illness that attacks mind, body and spirit. In order to fight depression you need to heal the whole person. Your doctor can help you fight depression with medication. Your therapist can help you by offering empathy and new ways of thinking about old problems. What can you do to help yourself? You may believe that you are powerless to fight depression. You are not. There are people who have struggled with depression for most of their lives. Doctors and therapists have been essential allies, but all the pills and all of the talk in the world would not have been enough if they had not done their part. They had to learn how to fight depression day by day. Good nutrition is essential. This is tricky, since depression tends to disrupt the appetite. In order to fight depression, you need to take in enough calories and nutrients to give strength to your body and mind. Fight depression by eating healthy, appealing foods that require little or no preparation: like soups, fruit, string cheese, yoghurt and whole-grain cereal. Sleep provides you the armour to fight depression. Without adequate sleep you are more susceptible to negative messages swirling around in your mind. If you are struggling with insomnia, make sure your bedroom is designed as a place for rest, not stimulation. If you keep a TV or computer in your

S piritual bedroom, move it somewhere else. Fight depression by making the hours before sleep as peaceful as possible. Do your best to block all light sources; the goal is to create a space of total darkness. It is hard enough for most of us to exercise regularly; it is really hard when you are trying to fight depression. Depression steals energy, so it may be hard to imagine how you will ever drag yourself to the gym, let alone work out once you get there. Remember that exercise provides your brain with a natural high and releases the stress that otherwise stays coiled in your body. Exercise is like a magic anti-depressant that works immediately. Consider it your knock-out punch as you fight depression. Lastly, anyone with depression could get better just by being more positive. We all need to have some spiritual training to prepare ourselves for eventualities of this kind. Spiritualism does not teach us that we will never be depressed; it teaches us not to be defeated by it. It does not teach us how to avoid suffering; it teaches us to meet suffering and live nobly, so that suffering is not unnecessarily multiplied and the depression does not steal away the precious moments of our lives. u Dr. Rajesh Bhola is President of Spastic Society of Gurgaon and is working for the cause of children with autism, cerebral palsy, mental retardation and multiple disabilities for more than 20 years

Deprived Childhood

Natural Solitude

treet urchins virtually living on road sides is a common sight. The other day I saw a timid small boy, hardly five years of age, selling socks to passers-by. The innocence on his face was so captivating that I was compelled to stop and talk with him. I was extremely polite. To my surprise, the child showed no emotion; he appeared to be completely disinterested in striking up any conversation. He just looked at me expectantly, as if pleading that I buy a pair of socks from him. I bought two pairs, and asked him his name and address. Still no change in him. I made another attempt to get close…but to no avail. The boy scuttled off, and I sat glued there, thinking about him. He remained in my thoughts for quite some time. Further up I noticed many more like him - some selling balloons, and others cleaning cars at the traffic light. I thought these children would probably grow up even more frustrated – seeing many rich families driving by in swanky cars every day. They may therefore turn to crime more easily. A child learns from what he lives with. Since no one has ever empathized with them or showered affection or love on them, these emotions are alien to them. These children have been deprived of the joys and pleasures of childhood. Their small world is not safe. They grow up - have to - very fast. The wicked adult world exploits them, and they in turn exploit the next generation. The vicious circle of poverty breaks them completely. But these children cannot be just ignored. They share the same air and space with us. They deserve a better life. Their pain, suffering and hardship must be reduced by the more fortunate, who have the resources, and should have the heart, to extend a helping hand. Let us never look down on them or mock and jeer them. Let us shower our love on the oppressed and the underprivileged. u Savita Bawa, Pgt English, Kendriya Vidyalaya, Old JNU Campus, New Delhi

If you are not in your element, don’t know where Time went And don’t know where you’ll go, tomorrow You seem to be everywhere, doing nothing, doing everything Always stressed, making fuss; oppressed Time to slow the inner clock, talk less, soft & slow Time to seek some solitude; change your rush hour attitude One genuine friend is better than a thousand ‘How do you do’s?” Avoid small talk, take a quiet walk Go seek a quiet place, unlock your inner space In the woods, a forest or the groves; brace yourself, breathe the fresh air Go to sleep, snooze or gaze languidly at Nature’s hues The nesting sparrow, the harvesting squirrel, the busy ant hills Leaves dropping, rabbits hopping, buds popping The solitude rests the mind; in Nature you find So much creative burst, in silence & quietude Fall in-sync with the silence, & create effortlessly a new you Try it, it is true Nature made it all for you !

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Shobha Lidder Writer Journalist, Teacher Trainer, Social Activist, Reiki Master, Pranic Healer


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{ Helen Livingstone / London / DPA }

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hat do you give the baby (Britain’s future monarch) who will have everything? Kate and William, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, whose baby is expected any day now, have been inundated by gifts – ranging from the practical to what some may see as the downright bizarre. The couple’s local Asda Supermarket in Anglesey, North Wales, where William is based as an RAF search and rescue helicopter pilot, has presented them with their very own parking space. “The Duchess of Cambridge has graced the store with her presence several times before, and we hope that the addition of her own parking space will entice her and her little prince or princess of Cambridge back to Asda,” said the Store’s

The Royal Baby Gifts

Manager, Peter Ellis. An ordinary parking space for parents with children has been decorated with crowns, and the words “HRH reserved.” There’s even a man dressed up in ceremonial costume “standing guard” in the car park. Fine jewellery maker Theo

Fennell said he was “thrilled” to have been asked by one company to create an 18-carat white gold bracelet, valued at 10,000 pounds, for Kate. The glamourous trinket also has a more mundane use – it is “the world’s most luxurious nappy rash cream holder,” according to a spokeswoman for Sudocrem,

makers of the antiseptic healing product. However, acknowledging that the Duchess was likely to have received many lovely gifts, the spokeswoman said they would auction the bracelet for one of the charities of which the Duchess is patron. Animal rights activists at PETA also put on their thinking caps, and decided to send an imitation sheepskin rug to the couple. They said, “Sheepskin blankets traditionally given to newborns in some parts of the UK are products of animal suffering.” For the new baby’s parents, PETA thoughtfully included some vegan caviar and “faux” gras. Meanwhile, shortly before she was ousted recently as Australian Prime Minister, Julia

US Students Drowning In Debt { Dominik Wurnig / Washington/ DPA } 

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ike Ward’s 60,000 dollars in debt weighs him down. To pay for his degree in Conflict Resolution at the prestigious Columbia University in New York,  he had to take government loans. The 28-year-old has been repaying 150 dollars per month for the last 6 months. Ward is among the 39 million Americans with debt related to their education. The total amount of student debt has reached a record 1.2 trillion dollars, according to an official from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Since 2006, the total debt has doubled. In the class of 2013, 70 per cent borrowed money, according to a recent survey by Fidelity Financial Services. On an average, each student owes 35,200  dollars. Student loans show no mercy. Unlike regular loans, they can’t be flushed away by declaring bankruptcy. In addition, credit will become more expensive for students entering university or college in the fall of 2013. Beginning July, rates for government loans doubled, to 6.8 per cent. The advocacy group, “Young Invincibles”, said it means that every year of college could add up to another 1,000 dollars in interest payments over the life of the

loan. Rising tuition fees does not help. Unlike in most Western countries, the US higher education system is mostly private. American universities are among the best in the world, but also among the most expensive in tuition fees. According to the College Board Advocacy and Policy Center, which tracks financial matters in education, an undergraduate student in 2012 paid an average 29,000 dollars in tuition for one year of private university or college - an increase of 26 per cent in the last ten years. Tuition costs for State-run public universities saw an even greater rise—66 per cent—in ten years, to 8,700 dollars. It’s a “Catch 22”-situation for today’s teenagers: borrow thousands of dollars to hopefully land a wellpaid job one day; or face the higher risk of unemployment without higher education. The soaring debt undermines the American dream to own a house. A study by the Federal Reserve shows that fewer 30-year-olds, who held student debt at some point, could afford houses. “We hear from young people that they are delaying the decision of large ticket purchases, like cars or houses,” said Jen Mishory of Young Invincibles. The rising student debt can undermine economic recovery, experts said.   “Student debt also is a drag on

the recovery that began in 2009,” wrote Nobel laureate economist Joseph Stiglitz, in a recent op-ed for The New York Times. “Those with huge debts are likely to be cautious before undertaking the additional burdens of a family. And even when they do, they will find it more

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Gillard told a magazine that she was knitting the couple a kangaroo. Not to be outdone, the Prime Minister of New Zealand announced that he had an even more unusual gift in mind: “We’re giving them Kim Dotcom,” John Key reportedly joked at a media briefing. German-born Dotcom, founder of file-sharing website Megaupload, is on bail in New Zealand, awaiting a US extradition hearing on charges of internet piracy. He recently exchanged words with Key at a parliamentary hearing on surveillance laws. “First the Prime Minister sold me to Hollywood. Now he’s gifting me to the royal family. I’ll pick palace over prison,” tweeted Dotcom in response. Finland has already sent the royal couple a baby starter kit—traditionally given to all Finnish parents—containing everything from bra pads for breast-feeding and romper suits, to condoms and nappies. The box doubles up as a crib. The Palace was more reticent about other gifts, saying only that they will be “logged” and the donors will be thanked. For those babies born to nonroyal parents on the same day as the future monarch, there is also something to look forward to. The Royal Mint has announced that each child will receive a “lucky” silver penny, featuring their year of birth and a shield of the Royal Arms, presented in a pink or blue pouch. u

difficult to get a mortgage,” he said. As of now, Mike Ward is hardly in a position to contribute much to overall spending, which would help boost an economy that relies on 70 per cent consumer spending. His monthly payment is scheduled to increase later this year. “With the loan going up, I will not be able to do many things,” said the New Yorker. u


22 { Peter Janssen / Yangon / DPA }

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he Royal White Elephant Garden, hidden away in a suburb of Northern Yangon, is no common tourist attraction. Hsin Ppyu Daw Park, off a busy road in Yangon’s Insein district, is the pastoral home of three white elephants, kept separate from the ordinary “black elephants” that are more easily visited at Yangon Zoo. The pinkish pachyderms enjoy a bath at 7 am, and a short perambulation before putting in nine hours a day chained to a stake in a pavilion – on public display for tourists. Admission is free. “Besides people from Myanmar, most of the tourists who come here are from Thailand,” said Khin Maung Win, the Park’s Chief Veterinarian. For centuries the appearance and capture of a white elephant was deemed auspicious for the rulers of the kingdoms of South-East Asia and South Asia. The creature’s rare appearance held religious significance for Hindu or Buddhist kingships. “White elephants were thought to be one of the attributes of a Chakravartin (a universal ruler),” said Toe Hla, Vice-Chairman of the Myanmar Historical Commission. “We believe that with the appearance of a white elephant

Royal White Tuskers

comes peace, stability and prosperity.” However, white elephant envy has prompted several wars between kingdoms – including the destruction of Thailand’s ancient kingdom of Ayutthaya in 1767 by Myanmar. Myanmar King Bayint Naung initiated the War when he asked the king of Ayutthaya for two of his white elephants. “When the King refused the request, Bayint Naung invaded,” Toe Hla said. Given this Myanmar-Thai history, observers were some-

Ancient Figure Gets Head Back { Tuebingen, Germany / DPA }

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thumb-sized figurine, which is thought to be the world’s oldest sculpture of a lion, has got its head back, archaeologists said. It dates back 40,000 years, to the Aurignacian culture of Europe. A headless figure carved from a mammoth tusk was discovered in 1931, when the Vogelherd Cave—near Tuebingen in Germany—was excavated. Archaeologists resifted the spoil between 2005 and 2012 - and found the head. Nicholas Conard, the Chief Archaeologist, said the head and the rest of the object were a perfect fit. The figurine is to be exhibited at the University of Tuebingen Museum. u

Reptiles Guard Illicit Drugs { Sydney / DPA }

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26 July-1 Aug 2013

ealers in northern Australia are using snakes and crocodiles to guard their drugs, Queensland officials said. The Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP) Head, Michael Joyce, confirmed reports that as often as once a week, police call in rangers to deal with reptiles being used as sentinels for secret drug stashes – in cages and other enclosures. u

what shocked when Thai Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichaikahaikul asked his Myanmar counterpart for the loan of a white elephant, to be put on display at Chiang Mai Zoo in northern Thailand – to com-

Swiss Train Station Shifted { Basel, Switzerland / DPA }

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Swiss railway station building has taken a short trip of its own, with engineers lifting it onto rails and moving it 33 metres, the newspaper Tribune de Geneve reported. The 1887 building, weighing 710 tons, was shifted to make space for a new underground station in the Geneva suburb of CheneBourg. The Station’s short journey was substantially slower and more expensive than normal rail travel - it took four hours and 1.3 million Swiss francs to reach the new destination. u

memorate the 65th year of diplomatic ties next year. Last month, the Myanmar government politely turned down the request, while offering to arrange flights for the people of Chiang Mai (Surapong’s hometown) to come to Yangon or Naypyitaw to see the country’s white elephants on their home turf. “Maybe this will lead to the revival of the elephant wars,” Toe Hla joked, on Thailand’s diplomatic disappointment. Myanmar’s former junta (1988 to 2010), and the current pro-military government, are known to take their white elephants seriously. An image of a white elephant, elaborately costumed, adorns the recently minted 5,000 kyat bill. The picture looks remarkably like Theingi Marlar, one of the three pachyderms residing at the Royal White Elephant Garden in Yangon. There are seven white elephants in captivity in Myanmar – three in Yangon, and four in Naypyitaw. Male tusker Yaza Gaha Thiri Pissaya Gaza Yaza was the first to be captured in 2001, in the Rakhine state. Not all so-called white elephants are real albinos. Yaza, for example, looks like an ‘ordinary’

elephant except for his white eyes and pinkish forehead. Determining which elephants are white is an arcane art – involving the inspection of the colour of the eyes, toenails, tail and genitals – and the slope of the back. Since 2008, three more white elephants have been captured, and one was born in the Naypyitaw Zoo. The former ruling junta organized two military-run operations to hunt down more white elephants in 2008 and 2010, to boost the auspicious collection, according to a Myanmar Forestry Ministry official. The Pachyderm Pact is arguably paying off in terms of political propaganda for the military, still a powerful political force in Myanmar. “Since a white elephant was first captured in 2001, Myanmar has been heading in the right direction,” opined Veterinarian Khin Maung Win. “Under former strongman Ne Win (1962 to 1988), no white elephants were caught, so he was not performing his kingly duties.” With an election looming in 2015, the ruling USDP has good reason to trumpet its success in amassing pink pachyderms. “This government is very proud of possessing white elephants,” said Myanmar Historian Toe Hla. “It is good advertising, especially among uneducated people.” u

China’s Solar Power Drive { Beijing / DPA }

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hina said it planned to add 10 gigawatts of solar power capacity annually for the next three years, potentially quintupling installed capacity to 35 gigawatts, by 2015. The State Council, or Cabinet, said it approved the plan and would offer tax incentives to solar panel producers that enter mergers, takeovers or major reorganizations. Producers of polysilicon—for use in solar panels—would be encouraged to co-operate, or join “advanced chemical enterprises,” said a statement posted on the Government’s official website. China is the world’s largest producer of solar panels and related products. Its installed solar power generation capacity was 7 gigawatts at the end of last year. But the industry has battled dwindling profits, falling exports and oversupply in recent years, as well as trade friction over exports of solar products to the European Union and the United States. The government announced a plan in late 2009 to increase China’s solar power generation capacity – to up to 20 gigawatts by 2020. A revised plan in July 2012 targeted installed capacity of 21 gigawatts by 2015.u

Court Case Resolved After 82 Years { Valletta, Malta / DPA }

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property case filed in a Maltese court in 1931 was settled in what could be one of the longest, most dragged-out legal cases on record. The case was decided after the parties reached a compromise, earning the applause of the judge, who said they had used “good sense” after so many years. The dispute over a property now worth millions had its origins in a will drawn up by a

noble, Arcangelo Calleja, in 1761. It was intended to establish the succession to Calleja’s property among the nobility of Malta. Judge Silvio Meli said the case was a complicated one, and had become more difficult by the numerous parties involved – as the original members had died and their inheritance had been divided among various heirs. No less than 15 pages of the judgement contained only the names of the parties to the suit. u


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26 July-1 Aug 2013

{ Verena Wolff / Hatch, New Mexico / DPA }

Too Hot To Handle

Verena Wolff

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he town of Hatch is a pretty sleepy place most of the time. Only about 1,500 people live here and there’s not much going on at the couple of gas stations, the supermarket or the school. But there’s one time of year when this town in the SouthWestern US state of New Mexico is really a hot place to be - the annual Hatch Chile Festival, when Hatch celebrates its status as the chilli pepper capital of the world, (the English spelling of the pepper’s name varies: in Hatch, “chile” is preferred). This year’s fest is

Red, green and yellow are the principal colours of chili peppers

Jim Lytle, a dedicated farmer of chilli peppers.

Bags of chilli peppers

A roadside stand sells chilli peppers.

set for August 31-September 1. “We held the first Chile Festival 41 years ago,” says Organizing Committee Head, Marcia Nordyke, who has been living in this town on the Rio Grande river for more than 40 years. “Back then it was meant to show our gratitude to our workers who harvested the chilli pods,” she added. For days the locals cooked the chillis in every variation imaginable, and then on Saturday night there was a dance. “Actually all really simple, but nice.” Today it’s a bit different when, at Festival time, not only do people from surrounding towns come to Hatch, but also up to 50,000 people from the rest of the United States, and even abroad. For the occasion, the chilli farmers have spruced up their town, and when people turn off the El PasoAlbuquerque Highway, the road leading into town is already lined by colourfully-decorated chilli stands. On sale are chilli powders in red and green, ranging in hotness from mild to a mouth-blistering “x-hot.” Particularly eye-catching is the store of Jim Lytle. He has covered the roof of his general store with hundreds, possibly thousands, of large red chilli pods. Hanging down in front of the door are bunches of chilli peppers of all varieties. Inside, there are freshly-harvested chillis, dried pods, and ground chilli. Jim owns the Sundown

Farm in Salem, a few miles away, where he and his family grow the crop on 80 hectares of land. Jim isn’t the boss of the farm. That role is still held by June, otherwise known as “Mama,” who is 88 years old. Her family came to America from Austria, and June is the last of the 10 children. She has known no other life than the chilli fields. “We actually wanted to cultivate grapes for wine, but they didn’t grow here,” she recalled. So, the family tried its luck with chilli and succeeded. They have even bred their own chilli called “Big Jimmy.” Farmers like to grow this particular one because the pods are large and tasty. “Today we farm four different types of chilli, but I am constantly experimenting with new crossbreeds,” Jim Lytle says. New Mexico accounts for about one-third of all the chillis harvested in the United States – including those pods that are immediately roasted and consumed. “Every farmer here eats chilli once a day,” June says. Some even have chilli at every meal. So what makes the Hatch chillis so special? - “They have a very unique taste of their own, and this has to do with the soil here in the valley,” Jim says. It’s a special soil, so close to the Rio Grande in the New Mexico desert. Jim says he can taste whether a chilli is from Hatch: “They are simply different from

A stand advertises chilli peppers.

those from the northern part of the state, or some other country.” It’s a view shared by Paul Bosland as well. At New Mexico State University in Las Cruces, some 70 kilometres away, his special area of research is chilli. Together with his students, he cultivates his own experimental garden and breeds various types of chillis in a greenhouse. The aim is to breed a chilli plant that can grow in different climate zones, is resistant to fungi and other diseases, and has pods that are a certain colour. “We have chillis here from every country you can imagine, since seeds are sent to us from around the world. We grow them here and then study them.” While chillis have a number of characteristics, farmers are chiefly interested in only one thing - how hot the pods are. For this, the standard measurement is SHU Scoville Heat Units. It was Wilbur L. Scoville, a Pharmacolo-

gist, who developed the scale 100 years ago. Bosland explains that the hotness of a pod depends on the volume of capsaicins— a compound that is an active component of chilli peppers— in it. “These stimulate the pain receptors in the mucous membranes, letting us taste the spiciness.” It hasn’t been all that long since Bosland bred the hottest chilli pod in the world in his laboratory. The “Bhut Jolokia” measured 1 million SHUs. It is also dubbed the Ghost chilli; the plant’s origin is India, and according to legend, anyone who eats it gives up the ghost. But since then there has been another even hotter chilli. “The ‘Trinidad Moruga Scorpion’ has two million heat units,” Bosland says. Anyone who can eat this pod, or a sauce made from it, must either be an experienced chilli freak, or has comparatively dulled taste nerves. “These peppers are hot,

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and I mean really hot. You’ve got to be extremely careful,” the University Researcher says. But the peppers have a market – be they destined to become a spice, or an ingredient in marinated dishes, or in sauces. “Not only do they taste good to us Americans and Mexicans, but they are also exported around the world,” says a man named Keith, who sells all types of hot and spicy peppers during the Chile Festival. Fans have their favourites. Some might like only the red peppers, others the green ones, and some experiment to see just how much their taste buds can handle. “It’s not about how hot as possible the food is, but rather that it tastes good,” Keith says. If it turns out that a chilli pepper is much hotter than expected, then Paul Bosland has a number of useful tips on how to lessen the sting. “Chillis should be enjoyed, and not be something that hurts,” he says. “One thing above all: don’t drink water. That doesn’t make it any better.” More helpful are dairy products that can lessen the sharpness. Milk fat helps to soothe the mouth and throat area because it dissolves the capsaicin. So a glass of milk or a yoghurt can bring immediate relief, says the world’s only Professor of chilli studies. “Beer and bread can also help.” While you can take a taste of the Festival back home with you, by buying some of Keith’s marinades and sauces, at the Festival itself, there is a special scent in the air - a mixture of all the tasty dishes being served up: burritos, tacos, chili rellenos, and freshly-roasted chillis that the farmers make in their ancient roasting machines. Depending on which type of chilli pod is being roasted and then peeled, tears may be falling from your eyes. “That’s totally normal,” says chilli farmer, Jim Lytle. He knows his pods, and explains: “When you slice open a chilli lengthwise, you see a long yellow vein. That’s where the hotness is.” So, for those who are not sure how hot a chilli pepper is, it’s best to taste it at the bottom, where it is the least spicy. “The closer you get to the stem, the hotter it gets,” says Jim. His sister, Sherry Russell ,knows the best recipes for the hot peppers. At each festival she makes brownies, buttered popcorn and crackers - all spiced with various chillis. And just like Mama, and all the other ladies who sell their tasty treats at the festival, she is certain of one thing: chilli is addictive. “Once you get a taste for it, you can’t live without it,” Sherry says. And the ‘toast’ is the scent of peppers as they pop out of the roasting machine. u


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26 July-1 Aug 2013

G -scape Prakhar PANDEY

Don't Hit The Road

Friday gurgaon 26 july 1 aug, 2013  

..be the change you want to see

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