Page 1

7-13 March 2014

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

Vol. 3 No. 29  Pages 24  ` 7


The Descent of the City State Whether it is the economy of the State or the state of the City

aryana has just confirmed its 2012-13 GSDP (State GDP) numbers. There was negative farm growth, no growth in electricity and water, low industrial and construction growth and high (double digit) growth of real estate and finance. It’s therefore now confirmed. Haryana is no longer an agrarian State (its pride for decades); it is not even an industrial State (it was a pretender for a while, with Automobiles); it is just Real Estate - and now even that story has become Fake.In short, Haryana is now the original Feku State – run by a Feku Administration. And as with all organisations, it all starts at the top.

t’s a sign of the times. Our collars have turned white…without using any blue. Once the pride of Gurgaon, the industrial workers, including those in ancillaries, are now up in arms against the State. They have been taken for granted far too long. The State has either ignored, or come down too heavily, on them, in the misplaced notion that the industrialists and the favourite sons of this soil, the Japanese, would be ‘happy’. How does an industry become happy if its workers are unhappy? The workers are rightly demanding at least 3 things: a hike in the minimum wages (as given to employees in govt industries); the removal of the stranglehold of contractors (and a serious review on the practice of hiring ‘permanent’ labour on a contract basis); and the resolution of all pending industrial disputes (the Maruti one has lingered for almost 2 years, with many languishing in jail all through this period). Funnily, even industrialists seem unhappy - Udyog Vihars and Manesar are very sore points. Where are all the future jobs going to come from?



n ‘eco-tourism’ project has been ‘proposed’ by the local Administration, to also promote non-motorised transport – near the Aravallis. This Administration has perfected the art of deflecting problems through ‘ad hoc’ popular announcements (that are ignored within a few months). The real role of providing and maintaining civic amenities is of course never addressed.


his is Gurgaon on the road. A sample. A 2 hour downpour on Wednesday evening led to a 2 km distance being traversed in 2 hours ! In the heart of the City – on Sohna Road. 7pm: the traffic jam starts to build up (on the Gurgaon to Sohna side). No traffic police. 7.30pm: the road is jammed. No traffic police. 8pm: the ‘no rules for me ' commuters start to enter the ‘other side’ in the reverse direction (Sohna to Gurgaon). No traffic police. 8.30pm: No car has moved for an hour now. The Traffic Police arrive – and are soon helpless. The reverse traffic flow is now in all the lanes. Meanwhile, the heavy vehicles (trucks), have started their entry (9pm) from Golf Course Extension Road – but are now stuck, facing the traffic coming their way on their side! The back-up goes way back into Badshahpur. 9pm: There is finally movement. Cars speed away towards the Golf Course Extension crossing...and come to a halt again. There is Traffic Police, but there is no movement...front or sideways. Even the U turn is blocked by trucks. The entire stretch of Sohna Road is now full of traffic – end to end. 9.30: the respite starts. Till another day...or millennium.


7-13 March 2014

RNI No. HARENG/2011/39319 Postal Regn. No. GRG/35/2012-2014, VOL.–3 No.–29  7-13 March 2014


Atul Sobti

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

Prakhar Pandey

Sr. Sub Editor:

Anita Bagchi

Sr. Designer:

Amit Singh

Circulation Execs.:

Sunil Yadav Manish Yadav

Sr. Exec Marketing:

Vikalp Panwar

Dy. Manager A/cs & Admin:


Bring out your Khaas Aurat While some celebrate International Women’s Day as a festival, many feel that it is an occasion to acknowledge the contribution of Women in society. A number of events have been planned in Gurgaon to celebrate the spirit of Womanhood. For Neela, Founder of Gurgaon Moms, the objective of celebrating Women’s Day is to help showcase, with love and gratitude, the economic, political and social achievements of Women. “Household chores, office projects, family – within these, Women have millions of responsibilities today. But it is important that they take some time out for themselves. We are therefore organising ‘The Mom Achievers Summit’

...P 7

Shiv Shankar Jha

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

Social... The Out-of-School Teachers

Social... Managing Modern Waste

Tuition Classes are not just an option anymore - they have become mandatory. As aspirations are rising and the quality of education in schools is deteriorating, students (and parents) are increasingly looking for ‘examination-oriented’ Tuition Classes. Nandini Kundra, who is working as Head of Corporate Communication in Indigo, is worried about her son’s performance in academics.

What's the use of a fine house if you haven't got a tolerable planet to put it on, asked Henry David Thoreau once. Samit Jain, Managing Director of Pluss Polymers, a Gurgaon-based Materials Research and Manufacturing Company, also believes in this philosophy and has been working towards creating ecoawareness in the Millennium City.

Wellness... King of Pulses

Political... Battleground Haryana

Protein is a vital part of any healthy diet because the body uses protein to repair and renew its cells. Pulses are sometimes referred to as the ‘poor man’s meat’, as these are an important source of protein for billions in the developing world. However, a fresh and unbiased view of the numerous benefits that accrue from these legumes

The Aam Aadmi Party in Gurgaon is working with the local stakeholders to unearth several unsavoury scams in which the bureaucrats and politicians have joined hands to earn easy money while the interests of the common man have been compromised. In the ensuing elections AAP will focus on changing the way politics is conducted in Haryana

...P 8

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.

...P 9

...P 17

...P 11

Plus Other Stories....

G-Scape ....



Fear Not........................................................................P 15 Kid Corner

Activities/Events/Exhibitions/Shows/Seminars/ Functions/Camps..................................................P 12-14

SMS NR to 08447355801

C ontents


...P 24

Re-assembled Mithraic Relief................................P 22

C oming U p

7-13 March 2014



Run 3C’s Devils Circuit @ Sector 70, Opp Indus World School Date: March 9 Participate in this commando styled run which entails climbing ropes, crawling under barbed wires and overcoming more such obstacles over a five kilometer course. The objective is to reach the finish line at your own speed and help others in the process. The run is divided into two categories: NonCompetitive and Competitive.

Run The IInd Great LKI Run 2014 @ Leisure Valley, Sector 29 Date: March 9 Time: 7:30 am Participate in the 2nd edition of the Great LKI Run – a timing chipped, challenging Running event. Art Aura & Array of Colors @ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: March 7 to 9 A Group Show of works by upcoming artists - R.C.Bhawsar, S.D.Shrotriya, Madan Lal, Harish Kumar, Nand Thakur, Prithvi Soni, Bhawna Bhanot, Manjit Singh & Mamta Singh. The Show is curated by Savita Agrawal. Art Solo Art Show @ Beanstalk, Sector 15, NH8 An Art Show by Puja Sethi ‘s works of realism and naturalism - using oil, watercolor and diverse drawing media.

Nightlife Women’s Day Special @ Cooper’s Grill & Bar, Sector 40 Time: 12:00 pm onwards There’s Fitness, Wellness, Travel, Food and Dance - all under one roof. Eat to your heart’s content, pamper yourself with free foot massage, undergo a makeover and learn to click like a pro.

Free consultation by Award-Winning Jewellery Designer, Monica Kapur From 1st March to 12th March Time: 1 pm to 8 pm Visit: 2nd Floor, Gold Souk, Sushant Lok 1, Gurgaon For appointment, call: 0124-4115200 or 8860306780

Nightlife Karaoke Night With Sabsteen @ Turquoise Cottage, JMD Regent Square, MG Road Date: Up to March 26 (Wednesdays) Sing out aloud like a star because the stage is set and the mic is all yours at the karaoke night. Hosted by popular KJ Sabsteen, guests can choose their genre and sing out their tunes - from heavy metal, classic rock to rock n roll.

Asha,Noorjahaan,Frida Khanum Etc) Will Be Sung By Best Of Our Ghazal Artists. Entry Is Free.

Dance Kathak Recital @ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: March 7 Time: 7:00 pm Disciples of Rammohan Maharaj will be presenting a Kathak recital called Purush O Prakriti. Date: March 9 Time: 7:30 pm Surangama Dasgupta and Lokeshwari Dasgupta will present a Kathak recital in collaboration with the India World Cultural Forum.

Bazaar Gurgaon Farmers Markets @ The Westin Hotel, Plot No. 1, MG Road, Sector 29 Date: March 9 Time: 11:00 am to 7:00 pm Farmers' Market – a popular initiative by food aficionado Karen Anand – returns. The Market will witness participation from over 40 gourmet food, drink and lifestyle stalls, seven restaurants, wineries, patisseries, kids cookery workshops and the Weber Barbecue picnic area. Also on offer are fun

Dear Media And Ghazal Lovers Date: On 5th March Time: 6:45 pm Venue: Epicentre, Near Huda City Metro Station Gurgaon. You All Are Invited To A Unique Ghazal Evening Where Selected Ghazals From Legend Singers(Begum Akhatar,Malikka Pukhraj,

VOID OF INCH "Void of Inch" and its sister concern "InchxInch" have gradually proved their expertise in achieving successful Modern Quality Interiors for their Residential and Commercial projects within pre-estimated cost and time schedule.Their quality furniture is also available at recently opened "Design & Display Center"

(without melting or breaking them)

Design & Display Centre: C-412,Nirvana Courtyard, Nirvana Country, Gurgaon, Haryana,India Ph:+91 9717736412, 0124 - 4236412-13,

filled activities like Hafele Demo Theatre and Kids' workshops. Photography Aravallis – from hills to apartments @ Alliance Francaise, Building No. S - 24 / 8, DLF City Phase 3 Date: March 9 to April 5 Time: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm Here is a chance to explore the City through some interesting captures by Vinit Gupta, Cara Louwman, Vicky Roy, Marianne Van Looa on their lenses. The Exhibition showcases their perspectives and reactions to the changing landscapes of Gurgaon.

Exhibition DURGA~ A Photo Exhibition Date: 8th March Time: 6 pm Venue: The Gallery on MG, Meharuli Gurgaon Road,Gurgaon The Gallery on MG cordially invites you to a Solo Show of Photographs by Sharmistha Dutta. The show would be Inaugurated by Dr. Bindeshwar Pathak, founder of Sulabh International Social Service Organisation. Nature’s Moncochromes @ House of Ishatvam, MG Road Date: Up to March 9 Time: 11:00 am to 7:30 pm An Exhibition featuring an innovative and charming range of attractive jars and urns. A Million Smiles @ Ambience Mall Date: March 8 to 16 Visit India's largest solo photography exhibition by veteran photographer Ashok P Kochhar. The Exhibition is an initiative to celebrate womanhood by exhibiting joyous smiles of more than 1000 women across Delhi - NCR.


Discussion Happiness of Being - A Retreat with Nithya Shanti @ Acharya Tulsi Meditation Centre, near Heritage School, Sector 62 Date: March 14 to 16 Time: 10:55 am Discover what it means to be happy for no reason. The Discussion will include sharing and dialogue through a unique inner adventure. Reconnect with the Happiness of Being that is our true nature, through authentic sharing, honouring emergence and wholehearted engagement.

Workshop Animation Workshop @ Vardhman International, Plot No. 1032 - Q, Sector 38 Date: March 1 to 31 Time: 10:00 am to 7:00 pm Experience the exciting world of Animation for at this Workshop. All kids of 8 years and above can participate and they will learn how to develop images, animations and games on the computer. The kids can create objects, characters and artworks and then learn the fascinating tricks of animation.

Workshop Theatre Workshop @ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: March 7 to 9 Time: 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm Enrol in this interactive Workshop by Ulhas Tayade to hone your theatrical skills.There will be an Introductory Session followed by an interaction with participants. Entry is free and open to all women.

7-13 March 2014

Women’s Day Celebrations The Workout Party @ Razzel - The Dance Factory, A-8/8, DLF Phase 1 Date: March 7 Time: 10:30 am to 12:30 pm Ladies, it’s time to burn those calories while you bond with friends…and what better day to do it than on Women’s Day? Enjoy a fun dance fitness session on the beats of peppy Bollywood numbers. Chase this with some light and healthy yummy bites with green tea. There’s also a makeover counter to prep you up after your workout. Charges: Rs. 350 per person Dress Code- Wear your fun track pants or leggings with some bright Tees (comfy yet stylish is the mantra) with of course a pair of comfy shoes!

Stand Up Comedy Outlawed @ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Time: 7:30 pm Enjoy comedienne Vasu Primlani’s solo debut celebrating Women's Day. The Show is hosted by funnyman Jeeveshu Ahluwalia, one of Delhi's top comedians.

Standup Comedy Fight Comic @ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: March 12 Time: 7:30 pm onwards Singapore's most popular Comedy Show comes to India. Six top comics of Delhi take their gloves off and have a go in six different rounds of comedy. Pure madness guaranteed!

Stand up Comedy The Ghanta Awards @ Epicentre, Apparel House, Sector 44 Date: March 13 Time: 7:30 pm Comedians Sorabh Pant, Kunal Rao, Sahil Shah, Sapan Verma, Atul Khatri and Azeem Banatwalla award the worst Bollywood movies with the Ghanta awards. Tickets: Rs. 500

Food Chai Festival @ The Palms, Town & Country Club,

34, near Hero Honda Chowk Date: March 7 Time: 11:00 am INLEAD has organised a Colloquium on ‘Healthcare Administrator - The New Age Influencer,’ to promote industryacademia convergence. The Chief Guest at the Event is Dr. Dilpreet Brar, Regional Director - Fortis Memorial Research Institute and the Guest of Honour is Dr. Narottam Puri, Medical Advisor - Fortis Healthcare. For details, email at

Music Rang Festival @ 32nd Milestone, NH 8 Date: March 8 Time: 6:00 pm Rang 2014, a musical colourful festival brings the ultimate electronic music experience - a mirage of bursting colors, the best of International and Indian art...ists, a wide variety of cocktails and a fabulous spread of mouth watering Holi delights. Artists include Giussepe and Arjuna, Orestis, Starlab, Bass Pilots and many more. Also on offer are fun activities like a rain dance, imaginative drinking games, plenty of visuals and a lot of colour. 9582385030 or 9873659585 for details

Colloquium INLEAD Connect Colloquium @ Indian Institute of Learning and Advanced Development, 81-P, NH 8, Sector

Cooking Cooking with traditional Millets @ Sushant Lok-1, DLF City Phase IV Date: March 9 Time: 10:00 am to 1:00 pm A class introducing the goodness of millets – learn about 7 types of millets with a recipe for each. The Class includes sampling everything that is made. Write to nandinig@sharan-india. org for details. Food The Banarsi Food Festival @ Café Wanderlust, DLF Galleria, Phase V Date: March 8 Get a taste of authentic Banarsi cuisine along with fusion music.

C oming U p

Sushant Lok, Phase I Date: March 7 to 16 If you are a ‘chai freak’, this is the fest for you. Savour different types of brews and enjoy!

Music Aatish-e-gul @ Gnostic Centre, Sahlapur, Bijwasan Date: March 8 Time: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm An evening of powerful Urdu poetry rendered in a spell-binding style with English prose by Puja Mehra Gupta. Experience the poignant and ethereal poetry of great Urdu poets like Ghalib, Faiz and Shakeel come alive in the voice of Puja Mehra Gupta. Phone: 9810990259

Holi ki Toli @ Windsor Court Lawn, DLF Phase IV, Gurgaon Date: 13th March Time: 11 am to 2 pm After Teej Ri Dhoom, we are back with another masti and dhamaal on this Holi.

H appenings

7-13 March 2014


Queenie Kangana


he starcast of the film Queen visited the CIty. Captain of the ship, Director Vikas Bahl, was present along with actors Kangana Ranaut and Rajkummar Yadav at the Event. Kangana said, “In the present scenario women should stand up for their rights;” and added, for good measure, "I don’t want to be the Queen of Bollywood because there is a lot of work to do for that." Vikas  said,“Kangana’s role in the movie is the best ever in Bollywood”. The Film is produced under the banner of Phantom Films. Music is by Amit Trivedi.

Off the Road and On the Dirt


or all the adventure enthusiasts who love to go off-road with their dirt bikes or race on uneven terrain, Polaris India announced the launch of its off-road track (Polaris Experience Zone) in Dharuhera. The new track is called the Pickup Fun Zone and also houses an adventure theme park. You can manoeuvre through the dirttrack with trucks, slush pits, humps, sand and stones. Pankaj Dubey, Managing Director, Polaris India, said, “Adventure lovers can now experience the real off-road thrill.” The owner of the Pickup Fun Zone, Sanjay Bajaj, said, “This is an adrenaline boosting place.” Off-Road vehicles are specially engineered to travel on rough and uneven roads.

A Pinch of Love, Peace and Humanity “You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.” - Mahatma Gandhi “Where words lose their meaning, people lose their lives.”

- Confucius

‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ is a Sanskrit phrase that means that the whole world is one single family. Sitting in my home and browsing with the help of the latest gadgets has reduced the size of the globe to my hand - or maybe smaller. Yet I never realised that there is a beautiful waterfall in my neighbouring country; I never imagined the squawk of a jay amidst the hills of Murree in Pakistan. My pen is my friend, and yet I have never used it to write about my friends in different countries, who can share their true experiences through it – for my people or residents of my town. Books are always judged by their covers. As I turn each page of a book that has become part of my life, written with a perspective of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’, I re-form my thoughts. There are indeed books that need to be judged by their originality of characters and simplicity of language. A Pinch of Love, Peace and Humanity is an anthology of true short stories by ten international authors who joined hands to pen down their experiences, to help make this world a better place to live in. As I read every story of this book, I feel coddled and cosseted. The beautiful prose poetry by one of the most popular poets in the world adds freshness to my mornings. A thought initiated by an author from Pakistan beads together many thoughts of authors from different countries into a rosary. Thereupon I think of a quote of Dalai Lama – “World belongs to humanity, not this leader, that leader or that king or prince or religious leader.” These stories have travelled across borders to transform the thoughts of readers, so that they should want to come together to restore humanity, kindness, love and peace. Let us take an oath to make the world a better place to live in, by encouraging activities around harmony. Let us make the world one family - above racial discrimination and political borders. Archana Kapoor Nagpal

Smashingly Rocky


he grand opening Media party of Hard Rock Cafe Gurgaon. The guests enjoyed the performances by Parikrama, Them Clones and Half Step Down. The Event also witnessed guitar smashes by Jay Singh, Michael Beacham, Hamish Dodds, Sanjay Mahtani, Kartik Mohindra and Subir Malik - as part of the tradition of Hard Rock Cafe. Contribution by FG Reader Rajeshwar Dayal Mathur View from the top of Imambara, Lucknow


7-13 March 2014

THE WEEK THAT WAS  Voting for the Lok Sabha elections will take place in Gurgaon on April 10th.  The Toll Hatao Samiti now wants the Kherki Daula Plaza also to be removed – and the Toll collection shifted further up towards Jaipur, to

Budha Gang are arrested.  DCP (East) Naazneen Bhasin has been appointed as the Nodal Officer for all complaints related to people from the North East.

Bilaspur.  142 villages having population of less than 2,000 people each, are to get banking facilities soon.

 An IT company Vice President kills his wife, over alleged infidelity; 4 workers who were renovating the house are held in the recent murder of a woman during a burglary in Sector 4; a labourer is killed after being hit by a falling brick, at a Sheetla Mata Road site.  AAP volunteers protest outside the Office of the Police Commissioner, regarding the nonregistration of an FIR in the rape case of a minor. 2 policemen have been punished. AAP leader Yogendra Yadav questions the Police Commissioner on the alleged ‘protection’ given to the perpetrators..  A woman accuses her brother-in-law of sexual abuse, in Islampur; a man is booked for eloping with his landlord’s daughter.  A Rajendra Park youth is stabbed and is in a serious condition, after a fight between 2 groups; an FIR is registered against a youth for beating a policeman, in Hayatpur.  8 students are held for beating up a schoolmate, who has been seriously hurt; locals of Rajiv Colony hold up traffic at Rajiv Chowk over 3 of the Colony’s boys (Class 7 students) going missing.  The remaining 2 members of the

 A builder, accused of cheating in a 2009 case, is arrested; a Delhi policeman and his accomplices have been booked for casting bogus votes in the City in he last election; MCG suspends 2 officials on graft charges; an FIR is lodged against a logistics company, for

 

cheating.  An owner of a bar in the DT Mega Mall complex is arrested for flouting rules; a gambling den in Civil Lines is raided, and 6 are arrested; an auto driver is held for robbing a man; a father and son are caught for a property fraud, in Sushant Lok; a bank alleges a property loan fraud of Rs 10 lakhs against a person; a man is duped of Rs 30 lakhs in a land fraud, in Sector 40, by a doctor couple; 2 people are caught selling fake gold bricks; a newly-married woman is conned by her husband, who makes off with all her jewellery and cash; a father and son are held for selling gas cylinders illegally, in Sector 40; 32 people are conned with fake job offers for Delhi Metro (over two thousand rupees taken per candidate).  MCG, personally led by the Commissioner Praveen Kumar, razes an under-construction building allegedly owned by relatives of the Senior Deputy Mayor; MCG Commissioner asks slum dwellers not to pay any rent to ‘illegal landlords’; residents of Sector 43 allege that HUDA is

The Annual Budget for 2014-15 for Haryana has no new tax, stated H P Yadav, President of NCR Chamber of Commerce and Industry. However, the Chamber has been demanding the following, which have not been addressed: redressal of issues related to dual taxation by Govt agencies; security in the industrial areas, by the Haryana Industrial Security Force; development of roads and transportation, along with city buses, in industrial areas; establishment of 200-300 Megawatt power stations at district level; reduction in electricity tariff. Yadav added that there was no focus on industrial development or incentives. While the declaration for development of an IMT at Ambala was appreciated, the Chamber had been expecting a go-ahead for the extension of the Metro to Manesar. Finally, alongwith the announcement of welfare schemes, there was a need to focus on vocational skill development and help open up new avenues for income generation and employment.   

Watch and listen to

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

   

planning to misuse a plot of land that was earmarked for a Community Centre. A Road Traffic & Safety Audit will be conducted on some key roads of the City, by the Police, in collaboration with EMBARQ India. Smart Card and tag refunds are yet to start, after the closure of the Sirhaul toll Plaza. RWAs of some HUDA sectors take up the work on sanitation on a trial basis – Sector 3,5 & 6, 15 (II), 21, 22A, 23; shopkeepers and sweepers fight over garbage issues in Sector 14. 3 of the City’s Police Stations – at Rajendra Park, Badshahpur and Kherki Daula – are in a poor condition, apart from being in rented premises. Prepaid Autos will not operate from Bus Stand also. Govt. Schools’ students undertake a Cycle Rally to promote awareness about the importance of Voting. The last date for payment of Property Tax is extended to March 31st. – the 6th extension! Automobile dealers can now register cars for personal use; the owners will not have to go to the registering authority. Raahgiri is extended to Golf Course Road and Sector 43; however, there are some protests from residents over the blaring music. Raahgiri to extend to Palam Vihar soon. A heavy downpour in the week leads to a 5km pile up on NH8. The rainfall in February has beaten a 13-year-old record. The 2 points are not necessarily connected.

4U 4


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 scalp turns very itchy during winters. I have tried putting oil before a shampoo but that doesn't help. SH

The scalp may be itchy due to dryness or dandruff. Wash the hair at least twice a week, using a mild herbal shampoo and rinsing well with water. Half an hour before shampoo, take two tablespoons vinegar and massage gently into the scalp. This helps to relieve itching. After shampoo, add one tablespoon vinegar to a mug of water and use as a last rinse. Heat olive oil and apply twice a week, the night before shampoo. If these remedies do not relieve itching, consult a dermatologist. Jyoti Bhaskar

WINNER 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

7-13 March 2014

S ocial


Bring out your Khaas Aurat { Shilpy Arora / FG }

write to us at


hile some celebrate International Women’s Day as a festival, many feel that it is an occasion to acknowledge the contribution of Women in society. A number of events have been planned in Gurgaon to celebrate the spirit of Womanhood. For Neela, Founder of Gurgaon Moms, the objective of celebrating Women’s Day is to help showcase, with love and gratitude, the economic, political and social achievements of Women. “Household chores, office projects, family – within these, Women have millions of responsibilities today. But it is important that they take some time out for themselves. We are therefore organising ‘The Mom Achievers Summit’, wherein successful Women entrepreneurs will talk about their journey and challenges, and will also guide attendees about various aspects - such as entrepreneurship and personality development. We sincerely hope that this Event will make a difference,” she says. A Stand-up Comedian, Vasu Primlani, Founder & CEO of ,

Ishita Swarup, and Director, Corporate Communication, Amazon, Meenu Handa are some of the expected Speakers. An excited participant, Richa Puri, CEO, Lightbender Media, says, “On Women’s Day you can now expect a host of activities – from Women-only get-togethers to free health check-ups (for Women only). I think initiatives like Mom Achievers help Women to equip themselves with some much-needed skills, which will also help them take better charge of in their lives.” While many are planning to attend seminars and workshops, they are equally excited about the freebies offered on the occasion of Women’s Day. While last year it was mainly limited to free drinks in pubs, this year free counselling sessions and health camps have been organized; and free consultation sessions being offered by health instructors and jewellery designers are also

Special Events on Women’s Day 1) The Mom Achievers Summit - Date: March 8, Time: 9 am to 3 pm, Venue: Pullman Hotel. A series of discussions are planned on topics such as ‘Reinventing Ourselves After Motherhood’, ‘Real Moms Real Issues and Practical Solutions’, ‘Grooming & Personality Development Tips for Moms’ and ‘Social Media Strategies for Mompreneurs’.

2) Celebrate Women’s Day in a healthy way! - Date: March 8, Time: 8:30 am to 7 pm, Venue: Fab Fitness Studio, South City II. A variety of fitness classes offering weight training and Zumba. AbsPro: a 40 minute class, working on your core region to make you ready for a flat belly - @ 8.30 AM Zumba: a popular 1 hour of dance workout including Salsa, Cha-cha, Hip-hop, Mambo and Soca - @ 11 AM ProPower: a 1 hour of a fiercely energetic weight training class, which tones all your major and supporting muscles and gives a calorie burn of about 800 calories - @ 7 PM.  
  3) Bring your old jewellery and get it re-designed - with a contemporary look - Date: March 4 to March 12, Time: 1 pm to 8 pm (except Tuesday), Venue: Aum Monica Kapur, 2nd Floor, Gold Souk, Sushant Lok 1. Transform the old treasures given by your moms and grandmas into new designs. 4) Seminar on ‘Great Women of the World’ - Date: March 8, Time: 10 am, Venue: Govt. College, Sector 14. A Seminar to honour the contribution of successful women across the world, followed by a Panel Discussion with Prof. Venkatesh Mukhi.

getting a huge response. Jewellery Designer, Monica Kapur, has come up with an innovative idea, of offering free consultation on getting your old jewellery re-designed. “There is something special about the jewellery gifted to us by our moms and grandmas. Unfortunately, those pieces mainly remain in our safety vaults for years. On the occasion of Women’s Day I want to help Women (those who are game) get those old treasures re-designed into chic and contemporary pieces - without melting or breaking them. Since we understand that it is not possible for everyone to take out time on Women’s Day, we are offering this free consultation for the whole week,” she says. Monica is getting a huge response, as the idea sounds good to many – and jewellery designers these days hardly offer any free consultation. Keeping in mind the needs of working Women, many Women’s groups are organising unique workout parties. It is important to make Women - the protectors, preservers and nourishers of families – more aware about the importance of a healthy lifestyle. That is what prompted Tarasha, from Fab Fitness Studio, to conduct a Women’s-only Workout Party. “We want to make Women understand the importance of their own health. To make it interesting we are planning weight training as well as Zumba sessions,” she says. Besides, many educational institutions are organising special ceremonies to recognize and celebrate the contribution of Women. Govt. College in Sector 14 is organising a Seminar to honour the sacri-

fices made by Women in times of need - across the world. “Women have struggled a lot for centuries and only now able to achieve some equality in the society. Many have also achieved financial independence through education. We need to celebrate the Day with honour and pride. At our College we celebrate Women’s Day by giving gifts to girl students, and make them understand the importance of the Day and the privileges of being a Woman,” says a professor. Vidya, a student of 3rd year, rightly points out that unfortunately Women’s Day is today limited to a few celebratory offers at spas, malls and branded outlets to make the urban Women feel special. It should instead (or at least also) be a day to acknowledge the immense strength exhibited by rural Women in their daily struggles. “In Gurgaon, the Women’s Day should focus more on the Women living in the villages that dot the City – and they are anyway the original inhabitants. Today they are not even aware that such a Day exists. Their role needs to be acknowledged,” she says. Although the concept of Women’s Day has evolved from the West, it has perhaps more relevance in a country like India, where, bizarrely, Women are revered when convenient, and yet constantly exploited. Women’s Day should be an occasion to move Women centrestage – in terms of status and opportunity – and acknowledge an aam aurat’s special importance and worth in society. That would be the best appreciation and celebration of Womanhood.u


7-13 March 2014

{ Shilpy Arora / FG }

write to us at


uition Classes are not just an option anymore - they have become mandatory. As aspirations are rising and the quality of education in schools is deteriorating, students (and parents) are increasingly looking for ‘examination-oriented’ Tuition Classes. Nandini Kundra, who is working as Head of Corporate Communication in Indigo, is worried about her son’s performance in academics. Although her 13-year-old studies under the IB curriculum in an international school, he doesn’t feel confident about many concepts in Mathematics and Science. “Sometimes I wonder what the teachers do in school,” says Nandini. As Naman dreams of getting admission to a medical college in the UK after completing his 12th Standard, it is important for him to understand the basic concepts of Science. His parents feel they had no option but to look for Private Tuition. A Tutor visits the home regularly. The Kundra family pays the tutor Rs 1,000 per hour for Home Tuition fee. It sure is surprising that even children studying in eminent schools that offer an IB curriculum, five-star infrastructure and a ‘unique’ teaching methodology, need external help for ‘education’ - and that too for clearing their ‘concepts’! “No matter what school your child goes to, he/ she would need Tuition Classes after the 5th Standard. If the child studies under the IB curriculum, it can in fact make it difficult for the parents to find the right Tutor,” says Nandini. The high aspirations of parents, who want their children to make it to the best educational institutions for higher studies, are also responsible for an increase in this trend. According to an estimate, over 75 per cent of the school children in the City juggle their time around school, extra-curricular activities and Tuition Classes - either at home or in coaching centres. Parents spend Rs 2,000 to Rs 8,000 a month for Tuition. However, for a high school student, Home Tuitions can go up to Rs 2,000 per subject per hour – and most need ‘Tuition’ in more than one subject. An English teacher at DAV School feels that the teaching staff in schools is better qualified than most of the Tutors. “The Coaching industry is not regulated, and the quality of teachers is very variable. It is therefore important for parents to make a sensible decision. They need to understand that Tuition Classes can lead to an extra burden on the child. Students are being subjected to ‘intense teaching’, and not ‘learning’,” she says. Vikas, Founder, Joint Effort Tutorial (JET), however disagrees. “It is difficult for a teacher to provide personalised Coaching. We help children to practice more and give focused attention to each student. That is why they find our service immensely useful,” he says. Undoubtedly, personalized attention,


The Out-of-School Teachers specifically designed assessment tests, and flexibility are some of the advantages provided by Tuition Classes. Tuitions are not taken just to complete the school syllabus; most of the students start their preparation for the College Entrance Examination, from the 11th Standard itself. Unlike in Delhi, not many students in the Millennium City opt for Tuition institutes like Aakash, TIME and FIITJEE – which specially prepare students for domestic entrance examinations. However, institutes that provide coaching for international exams - such as GMAT, GRE, IELTS and TOEFL - receive a huge response. The fees for structured classroom teaching, to help ‘crack’ competitive examinations, ranges from Rs 1.5 lakhs to Rs 4 lakhs, over two years. The ‘reputed’ coaching centres also conduct their own Admission Tests, to ‘select’ the ‘right’ students. Many believe that such institutions are giving rise to a dangerous trend, as they only focus on the ‘cracking’ of an entrance exam and the students are unable to think beyond their syllabus. “The students admitted to IITs in recent years, who were trained through Coaching centres, are less motivated to learn compared to those of earlier years. Many of them tend to be not interested even in their chosen field of Engineering. Coaching centres help them to ‘beat’ the examination, but their fundamentals

With the growth of video technology and Internet penetration, the phenomenon of Online Tutoring is also catching on. It has several advantages – it doesn’t involve any commuting and can be as effective as Home Tutoring. The Millennium City has become a hub for Online Tutoring; students no longer have to rush to a tuition class immediately after school. “Keeping in mind the requirement of children and parents in this City, we came up with the concept of Online Tuitions in 2009. Now we have a thriving network of 600 Tuition teachers across the world. Parents can choose any teacher, depending on their child’s need and their budget. There are no ‘breaks’; even if the family moves to another city or country, they remain with us,” smiles Kiran Garg, Founder, OT India.

are often weak. I strongly feel that Coaching for entrance examinations should be banned. Only then will we have the ‘right’ students in the ‘right’ institutes,” feels Prof. Gagan Mishra, a retired Professor at IIT Delhi. The schooling system is prakhar PANDEY unable to offer quality education and parents today cannot/do not spend much time with their children – and so they jointly look for alternatives. Like schools, the Coaching centres in the City have become highly professional and corporatised, with many institutes operated by IIT graduates. Kirat, an IITian from the 2006 batch, took up a corporate job after completing her Engineering, but left within a year - as she felt that the

S ocial future of the IT industry was quite uncertain. She decided to set up a Coaching Centre at DLF Phase IV. While she was making Rs.70,000 a month in a corporate job, she now earns more than Rs 2.5 lakhs a month, thanks to the booming Coaching industry. “The reason why students from even good schools like DPS, KR Mangalam and Scottish High are joining Tuition Classes, is not because their teachers are not good; the reason is that a classroom environment is frustrating, especially for those students who are introverts (and cannot open up in a big group). We have just five to seven students in a batch, and offer a hassle-free study environment,” says Kirat. It seems that Tuition Classes have become imperative for students to supplement their knowledge and to compensate for skill gaps. They offer children more practice sessions and support, to help better their academic performance. Jyoti Agarwal, a Middle School teacher in the City, however disagrees and says “A few decades ago only the weak students were expected to take Private Tuition and were looked down upon by the ‘merit’ students. Today almost all students take private Tuition Classes. ”These Classes make a child proficient in a subject curriculum, but not every child needs them. Taking Coaching Classes may reward a child in terms of better grades, but they sometimes can have a negative impact on the psyche of a child. Putting forth an example, Jyoti says, “A child in my school had been attending Private Tuition Classes for three years, but was still not performing upto the mark. We requested her parents to give a break to the Tuition Classes. We all were surprised to see an improvement in the student’s performance - both in academics and extra-curricular activities. Many students need to spend more time with themselves. Parents therefore need to understand that the requirement of every child is different and Tuition Classes are no panacea – and definitely not for all.” Aparna Dekshmukh, 43, who works with an advertising company, has tried the services of 10 Coaching centres in the City. “I am not satisfied with what is offered in her school. There are no good coaching centres in the City to teach as per the IB curriculum, and Home tuitions are too expensive,” she says. Aparna’s daughter spends most of her time at a relative’s place in Delhi, as she has been able to find a good Tutor in the Capital. The education system and all educationists have to share the blame for this mess. First of all, access of Private Tuition Classes to a limited section divides the students into ‘haves and have-nots’. Secondly, it makes schoolteachers less responsible and accountable, and therefore makes it difficult to push for improvement in the quality of education at the school level – and the parents are not really involved, or pushing for change. Therefore, Private Tuition, by default, has become a necessity to succeed in any Examination; formal school education has taken a back seat here. It seems that the overall purpose of education - to learn, has been taken over by an urge to score (in examinations).u

7-13 March 2014

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon


hat's the use of a fine house if you haven't got a tolerable planet to put it on, asked Henry David Thoreau once. Samit Jain, Managing Director of Pluss Polymers, a Gurgaon-based Materials Research and Manufacturing Company, also believes in this philosophy and has been working towards creating eco-awareness in the Millennium City - as it could deeply impact its ‘livability quotient’ in the near future. To ensure that Gurgaon is not burdened by the e-Waste menace, Pluss Polymers has launched an awareness drive on Electronic Waste and its impact on our health and the environment. Jain says that although Pluss is a small organization, it believes that if the cause is right and commitment is in the proper direction, then these goals can be achieved. Right now Pluss is working with Advit Foundation to collect e-Waste from across the City, and a target of collecting 5,000 kg of e-Waste has been set for this year. Jain says that they recently organised a drive in (DLF) Belvedere Towers and collected 100 kg of e-Waste comprised of mobiles, monitors, CFL lights, chargers and several other items. The Drive has been launched because the electronics that we buy contain a significant concentration of heavy metals and other chemicals, which can spread into the environment if they are not disposed of safely. “We have tied up with

Managing Modern Waste a Manesar-based company that specializes in the disposal of eWaste”, adds Jain. The problem has become acute, as the use of electronic products has multiplied in the last few years, with products becoming cheaper and more easily available. Jain feels that the ‘planned’ obsolescence of electronic products, such as mobiles and computers, is one of the primary reasons for a fast-growing surplus of Electronic Waste around the globe. “Solid waste management, which is already a mammoth task in India, is becoming even more complicated with the invasion of e-Waste”, he adds. With most electronic products - including ACs, washing machines and other gadgets - containing harmful substances such as lead, cadmium, beryllium or brominated flame retardants, the Team at

Pluss Polymers feels that it important to dispose of these materials in a safe manner. “Any spill, leak or leach into the ground or water, as is happening in Gurgaon right now when these materials are not disposed of safely, is going to badly affect the eco-system”, warns Jain. These chemicals will get added

Explaining the seriousness of the issue, Jain says that one desktop and one 17” monitor equates to the use of 22 kg of chemicals, 1500 kg of water and 240 kg of fossil fuel. If these ‘things’ are not disposed of properly, it could lead to a heavy contamination of our natural resources. He further states that if a tonne of steel is recycled - instead of producing virgin steel - it can save 40 percent of the water and 75 per cent of the energy, and reduce air emissions by 86 per cent and water pollution by 76 per cent

S ocial


to the ground water and soil, and pollute the environment of the City, which is already under stress. Toxic materials like mercury, lead and cadmium are very harmful to both humans and the environment. Therefore a proper collection and disposal of e-Waste is needed, rather than accumulating it in houses or just throwing away in the ‘trash ‘or selling to the unorganized sector, opines Jain. To ensure that this does not happen, Pluss Polymers is organising awareness sessions and collection drives in condominiums and schools. All the e-Waste collected during these initiatives will be sent to an authorised Recycler - for its segregation, recovery of recyclable components and safe disposal of the remaining scrap. Jain says that the Programme is being run with the knowledge and support from Advit Foundation – a not-

for-profit organization closely working with Pluss Polymers on various environment initiatives. Jain says that almost 40 to 50 million tonnes of eWaste are generated across the world. “In India we recycle only 12 to 13 per cent of our e-Waste and this does not augur well for our environment. The frequency with which we are upgrading our mobile phones, televisions and computers, particularly in Gurgaon, will lead to massive e-Waste issues - for which the government does not even have a plan”, he says. He adds that the government (and MCG in the City) will have to come up with a holistic environment plan for managing the rising gap between e-Waste generation and recycling. There is an urgent need to push the ‘two-bin’ waste disposal system - wherein plastic and other waste is segregated at the household level itself. The government must also create awareness about this issue, to ensure proper collection, segregation and disposal of e-waste. The Pluss Team wants corporates to come forward and take responsibility, and help in the safe disposal of the products they sell. Going forward, Jain says that Pluss Polymers and Advit Foundation would try to become a link between the communities and the authorised recyclers. “We will conduct awareness sessions at the designated sites, launch collection drives, set up a plan to encourage the ‘two bin’ system, and also issue certificates to participants”, he promises. u

selves, so that their interests could be better safeguarded. The workers also presented a memorandum to Gurgaon DC, Shekhar Vidyarthi, demanding the resolution of industrial disputes - particularly in auto units, reinstatement of union leaders and workers who have been ousted on frivolous charges by companies, strong action against the

owners of Eastern Medikit (a company that has left its workers in the lurch), end of the contract worker system (which impinges on the rights of all workers), issue of ration cards and Voter ID cards to all migrant workers, and action against labour department officials who are hand in glove with the industrialists. u

Heading for an Industrial Unrest { Abhishek Behl / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon


undreds of workers under the aegis of the Trade Union Council, representing trade unions from Gurgaon to the Bawal industrial area, organised a strong protest - near the Mini-Secretariat, on Wednesday - against the anti-labour stand of the State government. The trade union leaders have warned that if the ongoing industrial disputes in almost 20 large units are not resolved within one month, there is a possibility of a full-scale strike and disruption of production in the entire belt. Comrade Anil Pawar, General Secretary of AITUC, Gurgaon, told Friday

Gurgaon that they have submitted a Memorandum to the government, demanding an increase in minimum wages, the setting up of trilateral committees in industrial units, release of Maruti workers and a fresh investigation of the case, and several related demands. National level trade union leaders, from AITUC and Hind Mazdoor Sangathan (HMS), who were present, assured the Gurgaon workers that their demands would be raised at the central level also. Kuldip Janghhu of the Maruti Workers Union said that they want the government to revise the minimum pay to Rs 15, 000 per month, as it was not possible for a person to survive at less than this income at the current rate of inflation. “We

also want the State government to create residential facilities for workers, provide health and insurance benefits and also come with up a plan to support contract workers - who at present do not get any help from either the government or the industry”, he added. The problems faced by industrial workers, and the failure of the labour department to resolve any dispute, were highlighted by the workers. The central leaders - including Amarjeet Kour and DL Sachdev from AITUC, Comrade Harnam Singh Sidhu, S D Tyagi, and Surinder Lal from Hind Mazdoor Sangathan (HMS) - exhorted the workers to unite and become a political force that could influence the government in power. They also asked the workers to participate in the political process and create a separate identity for them-


S ocial

7-13 March 2014

Extraordinary Mates

{ Anita Jaswal} “In all of our relationships we need not only give affection but see that affection is reflected back to us - we want to know that the other being enjoys it. So a dog wagging his tail, or a purring cat, closes the relationship loop for us in a very profound, nurturing way” - Oprah


ets are great for improving our mood and temperament. Apart from the benefits of companionship and the development of an exercise routine, people with Pets also tend to exhibit less stress. Maybe it’s those regular walks and/or the sense that we’ve got a constant friend to share life’s challenges with. Or maybe it’s just seeing that tail wagging every day when we wake up. Pets can definitely enhance our mood. We are also making a commitment, of investing in another being’s life. Pets can be our best friends, our soul mates…sometimes even our surrogate children. What makes these creatures such key members of our families? Alka Chaudhary recently lost Snoopy, their family member for 13 years. She talks about the Pet Dog who has never really left them. “Who would have thought that the furry white ball carried home by my son Snoopy - after he found it crying in the garden, separated from its mother - was actually coming to its real home? The companionship a Pet offers is so different from human interaction. Sometimes we struggle to say the right thing, when all we really need to is to be there for each other. Though Snoopy is gone now we lost her to illness - I can still hear the almost silent flip-flop of her paws moving about in the house, feel her gentle nudge with a moist nose asking me to give her a tummy rub or just giving me those baleful looks on being scolded for chewing up my spools of thread when left alone in the house. I never ceased to wonder why she chose my spools of all things... I suppose they devise their own ways of self expression. All I can say is that having a Pet is therapeutic – it does leave you can change the entire meaning of being calm and content.” Louis Ruma Dass cannot imagine life without her adorable pug Louis. “He came to us as a little puppy. Little did we realise that he was an angel sent by God to help us bide over the tragedy that would strike us two months later….I lost my husband and the girls their Dad. The loss was unexpected and hit us all very badly; but to a great extent it was Louis who helped us get on with life. We got busy looking after the little darling. In the midst of our sorrow, he would bring a smile to our faces with his little antics. Louis has been my constant companion after my daughters got married and left home. He is an extremely friendly dog and has a huge fan following of kids and grownups. All the kids in the society know him by name. They call out to him and rush to meet him whenever they see him. He loves all that adulation. After his evening walk he insists that I take him to the community centre, where he is happy to sit and watch the kids play. The children are also happy to see him. Louis is like a son to me. He is most adorable . May the Lord give him a long and healthy life.

So when Gauri and Prachi Srivastava wanted a Aradhana Jain strongly feels Pet, their parents decided on getting an aquarium, that a Pet is like a family mem- and some birds. Says their father Pradeep Srivastava: ber. “It is a friend, a companion- “Birds are extremely intelligent and easier to care for -be it a dog, cat, fish or any other than other Pets. Fish and birds also don’t need to be animal. A Pet at home is an en- taken for walks and don’t mess up the house. Cleaning tertainer, ready to play games. a cage each day is far easier than scooping litter. Birds Apart from showering you with are also easy to train.  Birds love to learn and love the love, they also calm and relax attention from us humans, so training them is often a you. When you reach home breeze and just plain fun. Birds also don’t retired, their greeting and quire much grooming and are inexpensive Zoe love takes away all the to feed. They can be kept in a small space tiredness. Having a dog at and are attractive and interesting to home means a great deal to me. There is have around. Many birds have feather no room for boredom in my life anymore. coats that are incredibly beautiful and My dog Zoe is a full time entertainer vibrantly coloured – it is a joy to look and a very loving dog. She keeps all of us at them. Bird behaviour is also fun busy. Apart from the entire fun factor, she and interesting to observe, and helps is a very big responsibility. We look after lower your stress level. Similarly fish her like a child, understanding all her needs, are also known to have a tranquil, calmtaking care of her health. In a nutshell, it is ing effect on anyone who watches them Aquarium difficult to imagine my life without Zoe anymore. glide serenely through the water. Fish are It’s a feeling everyone should experience at least quiet and they come in an infinite variety of once in their lifetime. And instead of being afraid sizes, shapes and stunning, vibrant colours. They are of Pets and running away from them, everyone also very clean Pets – they don’t need to be groomed or should love them – including stray animals. have their teeth brushed!” Next time, instead of throwing rocks on them, give them some food or take an Most people quite simply adore their Pets – injured animal to a Vet (or call a Vet be they dogs, cats, rabbits, fish or birds. All wherever you find an injured anishapes and sizes of Pets have the ability to mal). Help as many stray animals find a place in our hearts. For many, the as you can; after all, they too have connections they form with their Pets, a life.... especially their cats and dogs, are often the longest, strongest relationships There are people who want a Pet of their lives. They are an unending that will fit in with their lifestyle. source of kisses, cuddles, slobber and Apartment living makes some Pets laughs. Our furry friends have for long more attractive than others. That is why provided us with comfort, camaraderie Love Birds many of them keep fish and birds as Pets. and unconditional love. u

This week I am presenting a very rosy picture of the senior citizens of this Millennium City, who in a way are leading a well provided, well contented life sans big worries.

Na koi chinta, na koi gam Yaqeenan ab umra jitni baaki hai Woh beeti hui se bahut kam hai Magar yeh kya kam hai ki ab Na koi chinta, na koi gam hai Jitne bhi kaam the zaroori Bade shauk se nibat gaye Ab to hum haath mein lekar ‘novel’ ‘Rocking chair’ mein simat gaye Chicken aur machchi Lagne lagi hai zyada achchi Kyunki bachchon ko ‘red meat’ Pasand aata zara kam hai Humen to na koi chinta, na koi gam hai Sar ke baal pahale jaise nahin Inka ab ‘salt & pepper ‘ jaisa shade hai Na to dhoop mein safed hue Na karwaya inhen fade hai Umra chhupane ki kyoon karen koshish Jaisi bhi hain zulfen achchi hain

Kya hua agar bachi thodi kam hain Humen to na kisi baat ki chinta, na koi gam hai Zindagi mein kitne hi engineer, manager aur banker Kadam kadam par aaye aur chale gaye Kuchh ko humnen adab diya Kuchh salaam hamen dete chale gaye Ab to saath mein yeh jo ‘consultant’ biwi hai Yeh kya kisi CMD se bhala kam hai Yeh hai to hamen kis baat ki chinta, kis baat ka gam hai Kuchh log salah dete hain, “Umra hone wali sattar hai Ab Paris, UK, US ki bajaye, tirath pe jaana behtar hai” Hum kahate hain ki bachchon ne jahan bhi ghar basaye hain Woh hi tirath hain hamaare, wahi sabse achche mandir hain Aur phir mil jaate hain wahaan jo dhevate pota poti Woh kya bhala kisi Bhagwan se kam hain? Ab hamen na kisi baat ki chinta, na koi gam hai… Chaahe umra ab pahale se baaki zara kam hai. Ashok Lal,

7-13 March 2014

{ Abhishek Behl / FG }

write to us at letters@fridaygurgaon


he Aam Aadmi Party in Gurgaon is working with the local stakeholders to unearth several unsavoury scams in which the bureaucrats and politicians have joined hands to earn easy money while the interests of the common man have been compromised. In the ensuing elections AAP will focus on changing the way politics is conducted in Haryana, and across the country, by focusing on political corruption, crony capitalism and the lack of development in Gurgaon - which has been milked without getting any concurrent benefits. Ramesh Yadav, Convenor of the Aam Aadmi Party in Gurgaon, says that their political goal is to empower the weaker sections of society and delivers solutions to their problems. “We want to bring hope to the common man, that corruption can be removed, the system can be changed and the government made more accountable to the people”, asserts Yadav, while speaking on the sidelines of a protest that was organized by AAP at the Police Commissioner’s Office. “Corruption, bureaucratic red tape and land scams are endemic in Haryana, and these are the issues that the Party is taking to the people. We want to create greater awareness among the masses, and ask them to support us if they want an honest and people-friendly government”, he asserts. Referring to the BJP claims that they also will deliver a corruptionfree government, Yadav says that these parties (BJP and Congress) have been tried and tested several times, and they are both the two sides of the same coin. In Gurgaon the Aam Aadmi party is going to raise the issue of unauthorised colonies in a big way, because a considerable section of the population of the City has been branded ‘illegal’ by the government, alleges Yadav. “HUDA has not carved out a single sector in the last one decade, and it is beyond the capacity of a common man to buy a flat in a builder colony - which comes for not less than one crore rupees. This is the reason people are forced to live in ‘private colonies’, which are deemed ‘unauthorized’ by the government”, he asserts. AAP (Party) wants to know why the government charges house tax and revenue fees, and issues power and electricity bills, if this huge population is deemed to be residing illegally. The issue of unauthorised colonies has been given a political colour, and like in Delhi

P olitical


Battleground Haryana

prakhar PANDEY

the Congress government will try to take political mileage out of it, but will fail. The residents of the 900 meters restricted area around the Ammunition Depot should also get relief, and AAP will push for removal of this facility or reduction of the banned limit to 100 meters. Pointing to a lacuna in the arguments of the government, Yadav says that when HUDA can develop sectors and offices in the disputed area, there is no reason why people from weaker sections, and those who can’t afford builder floors, should face demolition squads and police raids. “The people across Haryana have realised that getting rid of ‘traditional’ parties, who only subscribe to dynastic politics, is crucial for effecting change in the system”,

he asserts. The Aam Aadmi Party is also going to raise its voice against the forcible acquisition of land across Haryana, in which both politicians and builders have benefited, by using archaic laws. Builders and politicians complement each

other in this State, he says; adding that the rule of law is meant only for the weaker people, while the influential can get away with anything. All this needs to be stopped. “While land worth thousands of crores has been acquired, the farmers have

BJP: ‘Namo Tea’ and ‘One Vote, One Note’


n the lead up to the Elections, the BJP this time has started to mobilise the masses in a more subtle manner. While AAP organized a protest outside the Police Commissioner’s Office, on the issue of police inaction in the rape case of a minor, the BJP is using the ‘Namo Tea’ and ‘One Vote, One Note’ campaigns to reach out to the masses. Gargi Kakkar, State Secretary, BJP, says that the Party is working hard to reach out to every voter - in both Gurgaon and Rewari - to ensure the success of Narendra Modi. “In the last few weeks our Team has met more than 700 families in ‘old’ Gurgaon under the ‘One Vote, One Note’ campaign, which has been very successful. Even those who are not very politically inclined have made up their mind that this time they will vote for a government led by Modi”, asserts Kakkar. In her view the major strength for the BJP, in Haryana and across the country, is a dedicated cadre of workers; and who now believe that the Party is going to come to power both in Delhi and Chandigarh (in the Assembly polls, later). This has galvanized the Party. The workers in Gurgaon are leaving no stone unturned for the Lok Sabha elections, and whoever gets the Party ticket will be supported and helped to ensure that he/she wins this seat, she promises – obviously referring to the entry of Congress rebel Rao Inderjit Singh into the BJP, at a time when a number of established BJP leaders were in the fray to get the prestigious Gurgaon seat. The equations in the State BJP have indeed changed, admits Kakkar, but asserts that the decision of the National

leadership has been accepted by the rank and file. In her opinion, Rao Inderjit has strong credentials in Gurgaon and would benefit the Party by bringing in votes from his core constituency and supporters. Kakkar, who joined the Party as an active worker in 1990, and got an official position in 1996, is of the opinion that it important for any Party to respect the workers and listen to their views - if the Party wishes to be successful in the long run. She lists inflation, corruption, lack of security and multiple scams - in both Haryana and at the Centre – as the core issues impacting the voters. The BJP leader adds that what is perhaps surprising is that more women are supporting the leadership of Narendra Modi, and this support is particularly strong among the people from the rural areas. “There are a large number of ex-servicemen in Haryana, and particularly in the Gurgaon and Rewari area, who support the strong personality and leadership of Modi. The people are also very angry at the misrule of the Congress government, and they want to end it as soon as possible. To ensure this, Kakkar says that the Party has formed alliances with like-minded Parties in the State, and these would be strengthened further, to ensure that the BJP combine comes to power. Refuting the oftrepeated charge that the BJP is an urban-centric party in Haryana, Kakkar says that more than the cities it is the rural areas that are responding to the rallies and calls of Narendra Modi. “Our focus on fielding candidates having a clean image, and our dedication for the public causes, would ensure that the Party will be the winner this time’, she says. u

Kakkar also wants to fight the elections from Gurgaon, and asserts that if the Party gives her the mandate, she would ensure that the BJP flag flies victoriously in the City. She further opines that it has been difficult for her as a woman, in politics, as the system and the people are not very supportive; persistence has been the reason for her success, she declares. “The system is heavily biased towards those – almost all men - from a political family or background. The ‘others’ need a very long time, and very hard work, to establish themselves”, she says frankly. She is hopeful that her Party would realise and recognise her contribution.

been left in the lurch - with no development, little job opportunities and a failing agriculture that is getting little support from the government”, he says. The poor state of water, power and sanitation services, as well as inadequate infrastructure in the City will also be the focus of the Party. Lack of security and safety, particularly for women, is another burning issue. The decision by Kejriwal to resign from the post of Delhi Chief Minister is definitely going to help in Haryana, he says, because the people have come to know that AAP’s objective is not to be in power for personal benefit, but for the benefit of the masses – and to punish the guilty, especially the corrupt. While admitting that there were different views in the Party about giving up power, Yadav says that the decision has been taken keeping the larger national goals in mind - to work to cleanse the system at a larger level. Specific to Gurgaon’s governance, rather than pushing for a new Gurgaon Development Authority, AAP would rather focus on making the existing systems more effective and efficient. The Party is getting ready for elections and fundraisers are being organized in different parts of the City. To date the Party has been able to collect around Rs 8 lakhs for the Lok Sabha polls, and the target is around Rs 70 lakhs, says the AAP leader. The Party also has set up zonal teams, and soon booth level teams would also be on the ground, he reveals. He believes that AAP has an edge in the City polls, as their nominee, Yogendra Yadav, while being a local, also has a national image and will attract voters from across communities and areas. Encapsulating the AAP philosophy, he asserts that while winning in the polls is important, AAP believes that it is more crucial that the Party is able to bring about a change in the political system and agendas. u


7-13 March 2014

K id C orner

Tiny Performers


he Play School, Mother’s Touch, held its Sports Day with the enthusiastic tiny tots participating in all the activities. There were yoga performances, dances and other sports activities. The proud parents were completely mesmerized to see their little ones perform so well on stage.

Pallavanjali Special


allavanjali School celebrated its Annual Show. The excited children conducted interesting plays and performed regional dances. Special children also participated in activities, which made it a successful Show.

Life is more than Board Exams


Fun in the Sun


tudents of Montessori and Classes 1 and 2 of Ryan International School, Sohna Road, visited Aapno Ghar for a fun- filled experience. The students enjoyed exciting rides, participated in many enthralling competitions and relished sumptuous snacks. The favourite activities were the Caterpillar ride, Train ride, Merry go round, Floating ducks, Aeroplane ride, Columbus and Flying Bob ride. “Bhool Bhulaiya” was another major attraction. The students participated in the statue dance, singing competition and one-minute games. The day was both memorable and enjoyable for all the students.

xam time is here again and students are busy with last minute preparations, brushing up their knowledge. They are having sleepless nights, worrying about finishing their course and being able to live up to their parents’ expectations. All this leads to stress. The students need to learn to manage it well, so that stress does not get the better of them. While some pressure can’t be avoided, parents need to ensure that their children are not put under undue stress. Some students go into a ‘do or die’ mode, and parents must remain extra cautious during this time. Parents should be supportive at all times. This will give children the confidence that even if they do not perform well enough, it would not mean the end of the worldoctors and psychologists. “Parents need to understand that having unrealistic expectations from their children creates a fear psychosis In them,” says Dr. Ashish Mittal, Consultant Psychiatrist, Columbia Asia Hospital. Teachers too should counsel students on what should be the right approach to deal with Exam stress. When students feel stress free, their memory is good and they are able to have a better recall during the Exams. They should try and eat a diet that is light but nutritious. “Students should avoid taking fast food around Exam time as it is more difficult to digest and even causes constipation; it also makes one feel heavy and drowsy, which leads to a disruption in one’s concentration. They should take enough fluids, in the form of juice, lassi and water, to keep their bodies hydrated,” says Dr. Ashish Mittal. Getting enough sleep (six to eight hours) is equally important – it makes the mind and body stable. Insufficient rest or a lack of sleep, brought about by suppressed anxiety, often makes students forget what they have studied. Boys and girls, the bottomline is that the Board Exams are just the start of life’s bigger and more complex exams. So tighten your belts and get ready to face the challenges… and go give the Board Exams your best shot.

K id C orner

7-13 March 2014


The Way to Parenting Peace isn’t a place with no stress, but a place where you take the stress as it comes in your stride, and don’t let it rule you. You let it flow through you, and then smile and give your child a hug. There is a ‘way of the peaceful parent’, but it isn’t one that I’ve learned completely. I’ll share what I’ve learnt so far, with the caveat that I don’t always follow the Way, that I still make mistakes daily, that I still have a lot to learn, and that I don’t claim to have all the answers as a parent.

The Way is only learned by walking it. Here are the steps I recommend:

n Greet your child each morning with a smile, a hug and a loving Good Morning! This is how we would all like to be greeted each day. n Teach your child to make his/ her own breakfast. This starts for most children at around

the age of 3 or 4. Teach them, progressively, to brush their teeth, bathe themselves, clean up their rooms, put away clothes and even wash their dishes n Teaching these skills takes patience. Kids may not enjoy them at first, so you have to be patient and let them make mistakes and learn. They will gradually learn to be independent. n Older children can help younger children — it’s good for the older ones to learn responsibility, it helps the younger children learn from the older ones and it takes some of the stress off you. n Read to your children daily before bedtime. It’s a wonderful way to bond, educate and explore imaginary worlds. n Play together often, as play is the essence of childhood. Don’t try to force the children to stop playing. n When your child asks for your attention, grant it. n Parents need some ‘alone

time’, though. Set a schedule such that you’ll have time to work on your own, or have ‘mommy and daddy time’ in the evening when your child can do things on his/her own. n When your children are upset, put yourself in their shoes. Don’t just judge the behaviour (yes, crying and screaming isn’t ideal), but the reasons behind it. Do they need a hug or attention…or maybe they are just tired? n Model the behaviour you want your child to learn. Don’t yell at the child because he/she was screaming. Don’t get mad at a kid who wants to play video games all the time - especially if you’re always busy on your laptop. n When a stressful time arises (and it will), learn to deal with it with a smile. Make a joke, turn it into a game, laugh … you’ll teach your child not to take things so seriously, and that life is to be enjoyed. Breathe, walk away if you’ve lost your temper…and come back when you can smile.

n Remember that your child is a gift. He/she won’t be a child for long. Every moment you can spend with him/her is a miracle and you should savour it. Enjoy it to the fullest and be grateful for that moment. n Let your child share your interests. Bake cookies, exercise, read, work on a website, write a blog, sing and dance - together. n It’s ok to make mistakes. As parents you will make them, but learn to forgive yourself. It will help your child to deal with his/ her own mistakes better. n Patiently teach your child the boundaries of behaviour - what’s acceptable and what’s not. It’s ‘not ok’ to do things that might harm yourself or others. n Give your child some space. Parents too often overschedule their child’s life, with classes, sports, play dates, music and clubs - but keeping this going is a constant source of stress for both child and parent. Let the child go outside and play. You don’t always have to be by their

Camping at Tikkling

Graduating to Primary



ollowing the need for ‘learning by doing’, Greenwood Public School Sector 9 organised an exciting full day excursion trip to Camp Tikkling - separately for Classes VI to X and Nursery to Class V. The delightful day-long experiences were planned under the guidance of School Principal Ms. Jyoti Sharma, who believes that such adventure-oriented trips deliver multi-fold benefits to students. They not only provide them health and physical education, but also help form and foster better attitudes and values - thereby addressing the students’ life skills & coscholastic education needs. The students were thrilled and participated in various activities - like Artificial Wall-climbing, Burma bridge, Gorilla cave, Tug of War , Commando net, Tyre mess, Zorbing, Tractor and Camel Cart-riding and Tentpitching - under the guidance of the professional Rocksport team. Highlighting the importance of C’amps’, the School Chairperson Ms. Sarita Kumar said, “These trips expose the students to many exciting and learning experiences and learnings that are not possible to deliver or inculcate through Classroom teaching.”


side either — they need ‘alone time’ just as much as you. n Exercise to cope with stress. A run, in solitude, is a lovely stress-buster. Get a massage now and then. n It helps tremendously to be a ‘parenting team’ — one parent can take over when the other gets stressed. At least one of you must stay calm. n Don’t give in to your child’s demand if the other parent has vetoed it. It confuses the child and he/she will learn to play one against the other. n Take every opportunity to teach kindness and love - it’s the best lesson. n Kiss your child Goodnight. And say thanks for another amazing day with your beautiful, unique, ‘crazy’ child.

Graduation Ceremony is a precious moment for young children; it marks the beginning of a new chapter in their lives and their entry to the ‘big’ world of Primary. Ryan Global School celebrated its Graduation Ceremony with the theme of ‘Musical Fragrance’. The Programme commenced with Bible reading, prayer and prayer songs, followed by the mesmerising performance of the schoolchildren.  The performances were knitted around the Eight ‘Surs’ of ‘Sargam’ - Sa, Re, Ga, Ma, Pa, Dha, Ni, Sa. ‘Sa’ stuti marked the beginning of the Programme; the ‘Re Ga’ ‘raag’ was a beautiful composition of ‘Do Re Me...’ presented by the tiny tots of Mont-1; the School Orchestra representing ‘Ma’ ‘Madhur Vadya’ paid tribute to the old and new film stars of Bollywood with a scintillating dance drame depicting ‘Pa’ ‘Parampra’ and ‘Dha’ ‘Dhamaka’. The ‘Ni’ note represented ‘Naach’. The children then showcased a beautiful dance performance to the music of various countries and proved that the unstoppable fragrance of music spreads across the globe. The Programme concluded with the ‘Sa’ note of the octave ‘Sa’ - indicated ‘sampan’. Samapan was done by singing School Anthem followed by National Anthem. The galaxy of guests included Ms. Rupa Gupta, Jo Baath, Ms. Chandrima Chaterjee, Retd. Lft. General Sehhajpal, Ms.Saroj Malhotra, Sovanabrata Sirkar, S.R. Aggarwal, Jai Bhagwan Sharma, Dr. Manoj Sharma, M. B. Sharma, Ms. Naina, Ajit, Ashwin Sachdeva, Vikrant Gupta, Rajinder Yadav, Satender Singh, R. S. Wadhwa, Nitin Gupta, Ali Mustafa, Ms. Sonali Chopra, Major Rajender Yadav, Rohit Varghese, Nirmal Yadav, Ms. Tanishka Kotia, Ms. Rashi Juneja and Rohit Madhok. Everyone appreciated the School’s efforts in conducting such Programmes and felicitated the children for their hard work throughout the year. Parents said that such Programmes helped raise the confidence of the little ones.


K id C orner

7-13 March 2014

Banyan’s ‘Self-help’

Ryan’s Water Initiative



anyan Tree World School held a Workshop on “Help Yourself” for Nursery, KG and Grade I students. The objective of the Workshop was to teach the children to do their work on their own. Various activities were conducted for the children to teach them to follow this mantra. Discussions were also held on how to share belongings with others.

lass V students of Ryan International School, Sector 40 got the opportunity to visit Navjyoti Bhawan to attend the Paani Panchayat, conducted in the presence Dr. Kiran Bedi. The agenda of the Panchayat was to take measures to preserve rain water in different villages before the onset of rain this year. The Panchayat heads of the different villages were present in the gathering. Volunteers in different villages shared their views on water conservation and the measures taken for this process. Dr. Bedi praised the measures taken by the Ryanites – tree plantations and rallies on awareness. Students of Ryan International were also praised for the display of charts related to water conversation.

Radiant Sports


adiant Kids, a school for the underprivileged in Jharsa Village, celebrated Sports Day. The students enjoyed a variety of activities like - kabaddi, tug of war and various types of races. The students enjoyed the day and learnt all about sportsman spirit and team work.

Artistic Strokes

Little Hands Pray to Shiva


he tiny tots at Little Hands Play School celebrated the festival of Mahashivratri with fervor. The teachers dressed up as Shiva and Parvati to teach the children about the festival. The children were awed by the performances and shared their excitement with their parents.

Taksheel Buddhadeo Class 2, Amity International School

S piritual

7-13 March 2014

{ Dr. Rajesh Bhola }


e all fear for one thing or the other. Most of us spend our present fearing about what will happen in the future. Recognising what we fear and facing it is the best way to deal with it. Overcoming fear is a true test of life. If the devil has another name, it is fear. He strives to enter our minds and puts the fear of fear in us. It nags and torments us…literally makes us sick. Our ancestors feared thunder, floods, volcanoes…and beasts… and this made them turn to God worship. If left unchecked, fears can develop into debilitating phobias. We all go through dark phases and dark places in our lives – in terms of disappointments, loneliness, phobias, compulsions, obsessions…and the thought of death. Even reliving traumatic experiences fills us with fear. When fear interferes with our normal functions or immobilizes us, it is time to seek counselling. Fear is in our imagination. This is because our imagination conjures all sorts of potential ‘worse than’ scenarios – though the actual event often passes off as an anti-climax. Fear tends to magnify only the negative outcomes. A positive attitude in such situations leans more on the ‘better than’ scenarios. Both schools of thought don’t change the reality. They only modulate the mindset - by making it either bearable or unbearable. If we look beneath the appearances and seek the hidden reality, we would be free from our fears. It is common knowledge that anxiety about an unpleasant event is worse than actually dealing with the event itself. It is illusion that causes fear and we fear because we are deceived by it: as a man walking in the night through the street might mistake a coil of rope for a snake. If we really understand that life essentially is benevolent power, we would fear nothing; and even if suffering came, we would not fear it. If we are able to see beneath the appearances of the world and discover the reality that underlies it, then our fears of the unknown will disappear. Something in us is every moment seeking either

While fear is in the future, never in the present…. eventually, today becomes the tomorrow that we feared yesterday.

Fear Not

Why did all great saints not fear death? These great saints knew the truth about life and did not deeply care whether they died or lived, because they did not identify themselves with their body. Death to them meant no more than birth; life is eternal. A knower of truth does not unduly cherish the body. On the other hand, world history is testimony to the fact that the worldly-minded ones, who held entrenched places, feared the divine voices and sought to still them; there is a long line of saints and prophets who have been punished because they dared to speak the truth. consciously or unconsciously for that stable, permanent, unchanging element, which is the basic hidden secret of our existence. We see the temporary realities and the material appearances but do not understand the true reality that can make us free from our fears. We need to distinguish inward fact from outward fable. For most of us, death is the most terrifying fear of life. Death makes us afraid. We feel so helpless and alone. Atheists latched onto this fear of death to ‘explain’ the need for, and appearance of, a God – ‘a make-believe story that made everything all right’. The idea of God as an imaginary coping mechanism began with Sigmund Freud. The famous neurologist and psychoanalyst was an atheist and could not accept the possibility that God might actually exist. He believed that the struggles of life and the lack of strong, loving father figures inspired the construction of an imaginary Father-God. This Father-God would provide for all the psychological needs of the deluded. The fear of death is truly universal and is also the cause of all religion. Humanity is so afraid of death that they had to come up with a belief system called religion – to also help explain mystical occurrences. Many people come to religion because they want

an answer to death. Fear is the psychosomatic response of the body to any painful or unwilling stimuli. The most painful stimuli is the fear of death. While fear is primarily a physiological response of the body, constant fear can pervert this into a pathological one. Group fear or Community fear comes from a herd instinct. There is a primordial form of fear that keeps us always on the edge. Some feel constantly persecuted, by a grand conspiracy…they always feel a sense of impending doom. This psychological anxiety, sooner than later, manifests as a plethora of somatic ailments. As soon as we understand and realize the temporary nature of the material world, where things must change in cycles, we learn to gain equipoise. Just stop, become still and quiet, and in the midst of all your fears you will feel a strange and marvellous presence - more powerfully than you have ever felt before. u Dr. Rajesh Bhola is President of Spastic Society of Gurgaon and is working for the cause of children with autism, cerebral palsy, mental retardation and multiple disabilities for more than 25 years. He can be contacted at


Give your Thoughts a Spa { Shobha Lidder } Are you going out tonight To an uptown invite? You are wearing your best outfit Your silks and satins Donning your twills and tweed suits Putting on your best perfumes Sparkling gems, beset your tie And diamond rings that catch the eye! Did you Pick from your collection The most charming thoughts Of sweetness, politeness Gentleness and kindness Adorn them Tuck in extra good manners, etiquettes Compliments, praise And flaunt them as you mingle with grace Keep your thoughts sparkling & clean With good intentions Else they gather dust, rust Rinse them regularly Wash them, scrub them Keep them dearly Add to your healthy thoughts vocabulary Yearly Healthy thoughts, happy thoughts Activate enzymes They make your auras shine Your face glows Pick nutritious thoughts Guard your thoughts from provocation Don’t give in to temptation You will see a transformation In your human relations Be sure to gather precious thoughts Be a collector’s delight Flash & flaunt elevated thoughts Nourish moods Healthy thoughts are healthy food Be picky be choosy about your thoughts Meditate, contemplate Debate on what you will think And what you will not. Are you going out tonight To an uptown invite? Remember to give your thoughts a spa A warm rinse, therapeutic touch Your thoughts can do so much Think And concretise your thoughts You are the magic And the magic wand! Writer Journalist, Social Activist, Teacher Trainer Reiki Master, Pranic Healer


7-13 March 2014

Let's Open Our Windows


Letter To The Editor Dear Sir,   It’s a pity that after every Independence Day and Republic Day celebration, the Country’s National Flag is strewn on the streets and people - irrespective of caste, creed, colour or religion - blithely walk over them. Even when the National Anthem is played on the radio or telecast on television, people don’t respect it by standing to attention and singing it. They are busy talking on their mobile phones or chatting with their friends. As Indians we should show respect for our Country’s National Flag, National Song and National Anthem. It is only through the sacrifices of our freedom fighters that we have managed to gain Independence, otherwise we would have still been living under the British dominion. Jubel D’Cruz, Mumbai Dear Editor, I must thank you from the core of my heart for the encouragement you are giving to contemporary poetry. This week's edition carried three poems of entirely different hues. "Winter is here" provided a whiff of fresh spring air soothing the chilling nerves due to the never ending winter this year. Another poem, "I shall be a survivor" presented a saga of a courageous woman just after getting to know of her Cancer. My poem convincingly or otherwise presented a lighter side of growing old while keeping the spirit young. Articles on health foods, spiritualism and the current political scenario provided enough reading material for the week. Ashok Lal

C omment


s Amartya Sen has argued, we love to outside? And from Gandhi – ‘I do not want my house argue; but, though knowledgeable, we to be walled in on all sides and my windows to be stick to our own point(s) only. Even most stuffed. I want the cultures of all the lands to be experienced people are predictable – which is blown about my house as freely as possible...though very different from being consistent. What does I refuse to be blown off my feet by any.' How do we it say of us? Why are we so afraid to agree with grow, without opening our minds and hearts? There others, or acknowledge that they are right? must be change even within the organisations that It gets downright ridiculous in our politics. we believe are the best. After all, best implies a Intelligent Party spokespersons are forever comparison – which is also dynamic. defending and justifying the indefensible, and Why does the Congress have to define its role as attacking with the illegitimate. What a waste ‘keeping the communal BJP out’? Should the BJP of talent! And whom are they catering to? The talk of ‘keeping the Family, or the Parochial Party masses want deliverance, out’? After all, the Congress not 'news and views', and the also panders to castes and Why use news for entertainment? classes have already made religions. Would the Congress Bollywood delivers enough on that. up their minds. And both are not be better off sticking to a This is the era of specialisation. Why able to see through it all, in broader economic-cum-social go for half measures? Conduct the their own ways. 'Civil society agenda - of why it should be best Debates as also the most Real activists' are very predictable ‘in’ (power)? Tamashas. Do both Full-On. too. They are always antiWhy does the BJP try to And a simple plea to Viewers business and anti-‘private’. pander to an anti-Muslim – if you feel that some program They just will not budge. Can’t agenda? Living in an almost (especially the 'debates') is poor, private and business people 80% Hindu country, can it not just switch the channel. No need to be socially responsible - have showcase Hinduism to the fret or complain. The TRPs will take their hearts in the right world – and always endeavour care of the rest – within a month or place? And homing right to act with good faith towards two. Going one step further, is it time in. Why can’t the media be the minorities? Why must to boycott this IPL? It's after all a genuinely independent? We Communists always protest Tamasha Sport. The tamasha was at owe it to the nation, to India’s – against the business class, least bearable till we were a name in citizens, to our readers. We and the rich? Why is profit this Sport. With us becoming losers, owe it to ourselves, and to such a bad word for them? everywhere, we surely can find our our hearts and minds, to Why cannot they focus on just tamashas elsewhere. We eulogised be so. Unfortunately, today ensuring that the national the cricketers and participated in we almost know what a agenda remains the removal their tamashas when they were on columnist will write and what of poverty; and that public top of their Sport; we now need to do an 'opinion leader' will say investment in education the opposite. It cannot be a one-way - on any topic. In fact these and health and other social street. The fans the viewers should 'leaders' can actually 'talk' on requirements never comes never be taken for granted. any topic. down? Why keep quibbling with the means, that too Not much has changed since mainly on sentiment? The the last Editorial on this topic ...a year ago, to the debates need to be on and about issues, and not on date. the people and parties that are debating. Why must 'Why is there so much negativity, especially each answer in a debate be - ‘I don’t agree with…’, when it comes to politics? And unfortunately or ‘What did they do while in power?’ If only politics is our favourite pastime – well ok, after disagreeing or being negative is the requirement, Cricket and Bollywood. If there is so much that any party worker can do that. Why are stalwarts we feel against someone or some organization needed? Where does their maturity and intelligence or some idea, surely there should be at least go (once they are 'live')? It is moronic to assume that as much pride for something we stand for, or the viewers have no intelligence or maturity either. believe in. It doesn’t seem so. It is easy and The heads of the Parties need to step up and allow fashionable to just find fault; it seems far more their senior party men some independence...' difficult to find approval. It should be the other It’s time we all developed a broader sense of way round. Why should there be only a one-way issues – and of the world. It's time to be more track? Surely there must be learnings from the open.u

W ellness

7-13 March 2014

{ Jaspal Bajwa }


Health & Vitality... Naturally!

rotein is a vital part of any healthy diet because the body uses protein to repair and renew its cells. Pulses are sometimes referred to as the ‘poor man’s meat’, as these are an important source of protein for billions in the developing world. However, a fresh and unbiased view of the numerous benefits that accrue from these legumes, both to humans as well as the ecosystem, would probably lead us to re-christening Pulses as ‘the preferred source of proteins’. Pulses are an important food crop, as they play a key role in the improvement of global nutrition, as also help improve soil health and reduce environmental pollution. To garner higher awareness, the United Nations has declared 2016 as the UN International Year of Pulses. Over 10,000 years ago the first attempts to cultivate crops resulted in a wonderful pairing between cereal grains and leguminous plants. When thus inter-cropped, the soil gets re-vitalised, as legumes have the unique ability of absorbing nitrogen from the atmosphere, thus providing the most natural form of fertilizer. By themselves, the proteins from Pulses are low on certain sulphur containing amino-acids but high on lysine - which is deficient in cereals. Interestingly, when consumed together, cereals and legumes complement each other in terms of completing the amino-acid profile of the proteins – thereby improving the overall nutritious profile significantly. Adding Pulses to our diet is a great way to eat healthier, as they are packed with protein (about 20 to 28%), fibre, iron and many other nutrients. Pulses (also sometimes called lentils, ‘dals’, beans, gram or peas) are extremely versatile and can be consumed either as savoury or sweet dishes. Beans and peas are generally larger in size; lentils are smaller, lens-shaped flat beans; and Pulses come in small, gemlike round shapes. When hulled (shell removed) and split, these wonder foods can be cooked either as savoury soups, stews, snacks or ‘dals’. Ground into flour,

{ Dr. Nupur Gupta }


ruits are very beneficial for health, as they contain loads of vitamins and antioxidants. They should be consumed in their natural form.  Dried or canned fruits contain processed sugar which pushes the calorie count upwards.  Here’s the list of our miracle fruits: 1. Grapes: contain Vitamins A, C, B6 and Folate, as well as lots of antioxidants.  Grapes are low in calories.  One cup contains around 100 calories. n  They prevent ageing, kidney problems, fatigue, constipation, asthma, eyesight problems, heart disease and migraine. n  They can help improve digestion. 2. Apples: contain B-Vitamins in addition to Vitamin C, minerals and antioxidants. Always eat the skin on your apple because it contains valuable fibre, which helps digestion.  One medium apple contains about 70 calories. The antioxidants in apples can help: n  to fight cancer n  to reduce cholesterol and arteriosclerosis n  to prevent heart disease and diabetes n  o aid digestion.

King of Pulses

Pulses can provide a very versatile ingredient that goes into making a multitude of very popular dishes. Certain pulse varieties and recipes are a little difficult to digest and are best avoided by people suffering from digestive disorders. Overnight soaking can however help improve cooking time and digestibility, along with reducing intestinal discomfort and flatulence.

Tip of the Week

There is something magical about ‘sprouting’ the process of germination helps all the nutrients burst forth with super-charged intensity. There is a manifold increase in vitamin content (notably Vitamins

A, B, C, E and K), with a corresponding decrease in calories and carbohydrate content. The stepped-up activity of ‘live’ enzymes helps digestion and the assimilation of nutrients. On an average, the protein profile of sprouted legumes increases by 15 to 30%, as does the chlorophyll and fibre content; all this is available by simply germinating the seeds - which is very easy to do at home. Nature’s Wonder Food of the Week: Mung Bean or Green Gram or Vigna radiate In the ancient Ayurveda tradition, Mung Beans are one of the most cherished foods, as it is believed that these can balance all three 'doshas' ( body types and tendencies). Amongst sprouts, Mung is by far the most common, especially in the Far East and South East Asian cuisines. Mung Beans are one of the most wholesome of all Pulses. In addition to their 24% protein content, they are also a good source of Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Pantothenic Acid, iron, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium; and a very good source of dietary fibre, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Riboflavin, folate, copper and manganese. Further, not only are they low in sodium, saturated fat and cholesterol, Mung Beans are also extremely low in calories - with 1 cup of sprouted seeds containing only 31 calories. Mung offers diverse health benefits - such as providing a fillip to the protein density of our diet, aiding in weight and blood sugar management, reducing the risk of heart disease and preventing intestinal and colon cancers. One cup serving of Mung Bean sprouts contains 23 percent of our daily value of Vitamin C and 43 percent of our daily value of Vitamin K. Cooked Mung Dal is easy to digest as it is free from ‘heaviness’ – thereby reducing the tendency to flatulence associated with other beans and lentils. Its unique biochemistry makes Mung Beans suitable for children and anyone suffering from a sensitive digestive system.u Registered Holistic Nutritionist (Canadian School of Natural Nutrition). For education purposes only; always consult a healthcare practitioner for medical conditions

Miracle Fruits 3. Pears: are a great source of Vitamin C, fibre, Vitamin K and copper. One large pear contains around 100 calories. The vitamins in pears help the immune system: n  to fight infection n  to aid digestion n  to lower cholesterol n  to prevent vision loss. 4. Strawberries: are low in calories. A cup of strawberries (whole) is just 45 calories. It contains phenols, Vitamin C, fibre, B Vitamins, Vitamin K and lots of minerals. The phenols are responsible for making strawberries: n anti-cancer n heart-protective n anti-inflammatory. In addition to the above, strawberries also prevent eyesight deterioration and rheumatoid arthritis. 5. Peaches: are a rich source of Vitamin A and potassium.  One large peach contains around 60 calories. Peaches help in: n  skin glow n digestion n improving


health in patients with asthma, bladder and kidney stones, gout, bronchitis, gastritis and high blood pressure. 6. Grapefruit: is a great source of Vitamin C, which has many health benefits. Grapefruit also has a high concentration of the phytonutrient Lycopene. Grapefruit is large in size but contains about 100 calories only Grapefruit is good for: n  the immune system n  inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and asthma, and the lowering of cholesterol. The phytonutrient Lycopene helps prevent and fight cancer. 7. Plums: are another good source of Vitamin C and Vitamin A.  They also contain fibre, B2 and potassium.  One plum contains just 30 calories. n  Plums increase the body’s uptake of iron, which is essential for blood production and energy. Therefore, plums are an excellent choice for anyone suffering from anaemia. n  They prevent vision deterioration, asthma, heart disease and arthritis. 8. Cherries: contain has a high

concentration of Vitamins A and C. A whole cup is just 75 calories. They n  enhance the Immune System n  help relieve inflammatory conditions n  lower cholesterol n  prevent vision loss. In addition to the above, cherries also provide relief from gout, arthritis, headaches, fibromyalgia and heart disease. 9. Tomato: is a fruit. It is a source of Vitamin C, as well as Vitamins A, K, E and the B.  It also contains fibre, and a variety of minerals including iron and potassium.  It contains 32 calories per cup. The Lycopene in tomatoes helps: n  fight cancer, particularly colon, pancreatic and prostate cancer n  reduce the risk of heart disease or stroke n  lower cholesterol n  lower blood pressure n fight inflammatory conditions such as asthma and migraine headaches n  diabetics in keeping blood sugar under control. Note: Low glycemic index fruits produce insulin gradually - which gives long-lasting energy and does not increase blood sugar. This is essential not only for people with diabetes, but for anyone on a weight-loss diet. Eat healthy to stay healthy. Cheers! u


7-13 March 2014

R eal E state

B on V ivant

7-13 March 2014


The Vanquished Vanity Of A Celestial Danseuse

{ Meenu Thakur Sankalp }

An original story based on Hindu Mythology Be humble, be harmless, have no pretension, be upright, forbearing; keeping the mind and body in cleanness, tranquil, steadfast, master of ego’ - Bhagavad Gita, 13.7-8


indu Mythology has portrayed innumerable legends through an irrepressible gamut of tales, which have encompassed an imaginative depiction of events - many of them becoming indelible entities in Hindu religious texts. If Dance was to be made the keystone of a speculative yet spectacular tete-a-tete between the celestial Danseuse Menaka and God Mahadev, it may also dot, albeit minutely, the plethoral map of mythological imagination. Adorned in the splendour of a thousand diamonds - that glittered like heavenly stars, attired in a pristine white dress studded with emeralds - like a green stream passing through mountain crevices, hair loosely bound in a braid - nestling aromatic flowers from the seven tallest peaks of earth, and body bathed in milk and rose water, the celestial apsara (nymph) Menaka admired herself in the mirror. She was truly the jewel in the crown of Lord Indra (the Ruler of Heaven). She stood up in vanity and brushed aside the two maids

who were rubbing turmeric paste on her long slender legs danseuses defeated by her in a duel and thus enslaved for life. Menaka was ready to leave in a bejewelled palanquin, drawn by four enslaved apsaras, to go to the Court of Indra - flanked by celestial beings and Devas. As she walked bewitchingly into Indra’s Court, the Devas stood around, anxiously waiting to witness the heavenly Dance of Indra’s favourite Danseuse, who had disrupted the penance of many a sage with her ornate charm and flawless dancing. Even the great sage Vishwamitra, when in penance to attain divine knowledge, had been lured by Menaka; and by the time he realized his folly, Menaka had returned to heaven. As she danced in joyous abandon, the Devas were spellbound by the display of divinity; and when she culminated, flowers fell from above as time stood still. Indra rose from his throne to present her a pearl necklace, which she threw aside nonchalantly. Bewildered by her display of pride and arrogance and sensing that Menaka’s vanity had become irreversible, Indra hatched a plan to teach her a lesson in humility. He asked her to challenge Mahadev (Lord Shiva), who was the symbol of Dance. He told her that if she was able to vanquish Shiva himself, she could enslave both Shiva and his consort, Goddess Parvati. Menaka scoffed at the ‘challenge’. How could a mendicant in a loincloth, with matted locks, resting on

{ Krishan Kalra }


anga Ram has committed suicide,” - the news spread like wildfire, first in the marriage pandal and then the entire colony. There was a sudden gloom all around. Soon, word came that he hadn’t actually taken the fatal step - he had only threatened to do so. There was a tremendous sense of relief. Yet it was a matter of great concern, because Ganga Ram’s sister Nirmala was getting married and the baraat was expected any moment. There was great commotion and everyone was trying to find out exactly what the cause of it all was. Ganga Ram was the youngest son of Lala Bishan Das, a respected shopkeeper of Laxmi Bai Nagar market. Lalaji was allotted this shop after Partition (in 1947). He had lost everything in Pakistan, but was able to bring his family − wife, two boys, a girl and an old father − safely to Delhi. Ganga Ram was born in independent India. Bishan Das’s diligence, hard work and honesty had paid off, enabling him to run a reasonably good business. People appreciated his forthright manner and reasonable prices, and so his grocery store was a huge success. The entire family lived in a small flat on top of the shop. The older boys had graduated and found jobs. They also helped the

Mount Kailash, be any match to her? She would defeat him and become the Goddess of the three worlds, she told herself. The vain and proud Menaka marched to Mount Kailash, where Shiva was in penance with Parvati by his side. Menaka mocked and challenged Shiva to a Dance duel and declared that, after defeating him, she would rule Mount Kailash forever. His penance disturbed by Menaka’s taunts, Shiva opened his eyes. He was seething in anger. As his matted locks opened up, a storm blew across the three worlds. He performed the Tandava, the Divine Dance that depicted creation, preservation and destruction - the cycle of birth, death and rebirth. Menaka was subtle and enticing. They danced continuously for twenty-one days, as Vishnu, Brahma and the other Gods of Heaven looked on in anticipation. Finally Shiva took on a terrible form. He performed the Rudra Tandava, a vigorous and violent Dance that depicted Mahadev as the creator, as also the destroyer of evil. Menaka was struck by a bolt of lightning. She fell down in agony and distress. Shiva continued dancing and the undaunted Lord of the Universe pinned Menaka down with his left leg and raised his Trishul (Trident), to strike her down in anger. Just then Vishnu appeared and appealed to Lord Shiva to spare her life. Shiva was unrelenting…but Menaka fell at his feet, imploring him to forgive her vanity. Shiva calmed down.

Selective Suicide father in their spare time. The youngest one, Ganga, although 20, was still at school. Even the daughter had passed Matric and was now getting married to a decent boy from a known family. All the arrangements had been made and it was now almost time for the baraat to arrive. Ganga − the ‘laadla’ of the family − got into an argument with his mother. No one knew exactly what the issue was - perhaps something to do with a scooter for the groom or may be the ‘tilak’ money or some such matter. The duo was huddled in one corner. She was trying to pacify the brash young lad but he was adamant. She told him that they had to give the scooter as it had been promised by his father; he said they couldn’t afford it. She said that everyone took loans when marrying off their girls; but he (Ganga) was dead against it. He started shouting, “No one listens to me in this family; I too have a right to decide such matters.” Suddenly he climbed on to the window ledge and sat there with his legs dangling out and announced that he was going to jump out if his mother didn’t agree. She was given 10 minutes to make up her mind. The poor lady was aghast. A happy

He lifted up Menaka and commanded her to release the other celestial danseuses of heaven from bondage, and to accept them as her shishyas (disciples). He also commanded her not to use Dance to entice sages and disturb their penance. He explained to Menaka that though facial and body beauty were divine gifts, they were not intended to humiliate, entice or entrap. He impressed upon her that the hallmark of a talented Danseuse was to posture herself in a relatively lower context to others – and to behave with a degree of respect and dignity. He sermonized her to be humble in success and firm in adversity. Menaka understood that the submission of ‘self’ to a divine deity and the acceptance of one’s defects, were the essential pre-requisites of a Danseuse. She vowed to never digress from the ideals of ‘namrata’ (modest behaviour) and to accept her rise and fall with grace and fortitude. Menaka bowed to the commands of Lord Shiva and requested him to bestow respectability and dignity on Danseuses. Shiva granted that Dance be forever viewed as the depiction of the ‘Divine’ in Hindu religious traditions. On her return to Heaven, Menaka spent her time at Indra’s Court in quiet contemplation, imparting the true ideals of Dance to her shishyas.u The writer is a renowned Kuchipudi Danseuse and Choreographer

occasion had suddenly turned grave. She knew he was wrong and yet the lad would not relent. They had to give a decent dowry. Lalaji was highly spoken of in the colony, and everything had been settled. Now this fool was creating a scene. God knows what he might do in the heat of the moment. She nervously pleaded with him to stay where he was and ran out to call her husband and the older boys. Everyone tried to argue with the mad fellow, but to no avail. Even the bride herself appealed to her ‘chhota bhayya’, but he wouldn’t budge. The situation seemed to be getting out of hand. Meanwhile, someone had rushed out and fetched the ‘mamaji’ – the mother’s elder brother. He was a learned man, whose wise counsel was sought by almost everyone in the large clan. Mamaji came into the room, quickly gauged the situation, assured his sobbing sister that everything would be alright and walked upto the window where the daredevil was perched. He patted the youngster on his back and calmly told him that if he wanted to jump out he should do so quickly and be done with it - so that everyone could get back to their assigned duties. He patted him a second time and urged him to hurry up with the deed. Ganga Ram was shocked. He hadn’t expected this. He started sobbing and sheepishly came down. He said that he wanted to commit suicide for his mother and not for anyone else. He had a right to be selective!u


7-13 March 2014

The Illusionist Duo Horst Ossinger

Chris (left) and Andreas Ehrlich (right) in Buende, Germany, with a piece of bent Rail - a favourite prop Illusionist Uri Geller in his garden in England, next to a steel Rail bent by the Ehrlich Brothers, whom for their Act. he considers to be “the legitimate successors to { Eva Gerten/ Buende, Germany/ DPA } Siegfried and Roy.”


England. Claiming that the Rail had been supplied by the German railway company, Deutsche Bahn, they first cut off a piece at Geller’s request, to show that it was indeed steel. Then they bent it. After which Geller, as a further check, banged on the clanging Rail with a club hammer several times.
“I’m totally freaked out,” Geller said on a YouTube video of the performance, “I’ve never seen anything like this in my life.” For their oeuvre of 150 original tricks, they were named ‘Magicians of the Year 2013’ by the Magic Circle of Germany, a Frankfurt-based association of

parks fly as two young men on stage cut through a (railway) Rail with an angle grinder, as heavy rock music blares from loudspeakers. Having convinced their electrified audience that the Rail is really made of steel, they proceed to amaze everyone by bending it with their bare hands - as though it were merely a giant stick of stiff liquorice. The Illusionist Duo is a brothers’ act - the Ehrlich Brothers, from the town of Buende, 90 kilometres west of Hanover. Andreas, 35, and Chris, 31, have set their sights on Las Vegas, the entertain-

ment mecca in the Nevada Desert. They have a prominent advocate in Uri Geller, no slouch at bending metal himself, albeit on a much smaller scale. The Israeli Illusionist, now 67, rose to fame in the 1970s by bending spoons, keys and other metal objects - supposedly with his psychic powers. “For me, the Brothers are legitimate successors to Siegfried and Roy,” Geller said, referring to two German-born Illusionists who hosted a show with white lions and white tigers at the Las Vegas Strip for more than 35 years. The Brothers have performed their Railbending act in Geller’s yard in

{ Juan Jose Dalton/ San Salvador/ DPA }

Volcano offers a respite!

Illusionist brothers Andreas (left) and Chris Ehrlich (right) on a Harley Davidson motorcycle remodelled specially for their Act.

what they loved. They took 13 years to develop their act.
Now the Brothers have a workshop in Buende, where they work on new ideas - usually involving liberal use of sparks and sensational effects - with a team of mechanics and electricians. Chris is a trained pyro-technician. The inexplicable illusions they have created so far include: transforming boiling water into an ice block within seconds, having a small orange tree pop out of an orange seed, riding a motorcycle out of what appears to be a giant iPad and growing a fragrant red rose out of a paper flower. They perform many of these on stage, in the middle of the audience, “so that the people all around us can watch what we do - or don’t do,” Chris remarked. Seeing is believing, it is said, but what the audience sees is unbelievable a formula that is packing the halls for their shows. The Brothers perform without the traditional magicians’ accouterments - such as tailcoats, top hats, magic wands and white rabbits; they simply wear shirts and jeans. Nor do they utter oldfashioned magic words like ‘abracadabra’ or ‘presto’. There is, however, one thing that some others have done and which they would gladly duplicate: conjuring up a gig in Las Vegas. u

Dagoberto Vega


ancy having a coffee on a volcano? In Central America, visitors feel safe enough to dine in style in restaurants on the verdant flanks of the San Salvador Volcano, which has not erupted since 1917. 
 The eateries offer a fantastic view, and you can even walk up into the ‘monster mountain’s’ crater. 
Located just 10 kilometres west of the Salvadoran capital, San Salvador, the Mountain, which tops out at above 1,800 metres, has become a favourite visiting spot for both foreign and local tourists. “It is a good option to get away from the noise of the City and to breathe a little fresh air,” said Zoila Velazquez, who is a Salvadoran.
There are about 10 restaurants and cafes offering diners a beautiful panoramic view of the City. They serve traditional foods of El Salvador, such as the “pupusas” (maize tortillas filled with cheese), as well as international meals. Felix Gutierrez was born near the Boqueron Volcano and grew up there. His business has been

 The Association has about 3,000 members, only a fraction of whom are full-time magicians. Many specialize in children’s birthday parties and anniversaries, others in trade shows or galas. “Everyone has his or her domain,” said Johannes Klesper, Chairman of the Magic Circle’s branch in Bielefeld. “Only a few put on an entire show by themselves – it is extremely difficult,” he pointed out. “You’ve got to be good, have your own concept and also come up with the necessary funds.” The Ehrlichs’ desire to perform feats of magic began in their childhood, when they joined the Magic Circle in Bielefeld - not far from Buende - and practiced card tricks and sleight of hand. They built props with their father’s help and dreamt of standing on a big stage one day and earning their living by doing

G lobal

The sign outside the Las Brumas Grill and Cafe on the flanks of the Boqueron Volcano, near San Salvador. Vegetation has flourished since the last eruption in 1917.

The interior of one of the opensided cafes, where tourists can enjoy a meal and the fine view from high on the flanks of the Boqueron Volcano. operating for 10 years and he has opened several venues - five of which are called ‘Don Pedro Feliz.’ The conditions at the Volcano are just fine for such enterprise: good weather, a fantastic view, nature and peace and quiet.
Farmers grow Coffee beans of a good quality that must be grown in the highlands; and specialising in that kind of Coffee is the Volcano Cafe, at Kilometre 19 of the Mountain Highway. The

Ready-packed Cafe San Cristobal Coffee on sale at the Cafe of the same name, on the San Salvador Volcano. Coffee beans grown at high altitude are said to be of better quality. Manager, Guadalupe Martinez, said, “Here you can get away from the hustle and bustle of

the City, breathe in clean air and come into closer contact with nature – over a cup of good Coffee. The San Salvador Volcano erupted for the first time in 1671. The last eruption, in 1917, caused great damage, covering a vast area with lava in particular a section known The Volcano as El Playon.
 also goes by its indigenous name of Quezaltepec, which means hill of the Quetzales - a tropical bird species native to Central America. Later it be-

came known as the San Salvador Volcano or the Boqueron (meaning ‘large opening’). The Volcano’s diameter is 1.6 kilometres, and provides a volume of 110 cubic kilometres. The Mountain’s prominent peak is called Picacho and is 1,960 metres high. Cyclist paths end there. The Salvadoran government in 2008 inaugurated the El Boqueron National Park, which includes paths that wrap around the crater and draw in tourists. 

G lobal

Spymuseum / Spy Museum

7-13 March 2014

The new Union action: ‘Boss-napping’ { Paris /DPA }


A mock-up of a street in Cold War Berlin, ‘The City of Spies’, inside the International Spy Museum in Washington DC. At left is a communist-made Trabant car and the visitors are checking out a public telephone, marked ‘Telefon’ in German.

{ Silvia Ayuso/Washington/ DPA }


ong before most of us knew what the acronym NSA meant, spying was a normal, though littlementioned, tool of many governments around the world. Traditional spies could only dream of the surveillance capabilities possessed by the National Security Agency, as revealed by whistle-blower Edward Snowden, but more rudimentary methods can be just as secretive - and perhaps even deadlier. Just down the street from the FBI - the US counter-espionage agency - tourists can walk into the International Spy Museum. This small Museum is dedicated to showing who spies are, how they are trained, how they work - and above all, how they survive… or don’t. The Museum, which prides itself on being the only public museum in the United States dedicated to espionage, explains to visitors - with a sign at the entrance - that it makes no judgements about the political inclinations or loyalties of the spies. It simply showcases their capabilities.
The International Spy Museum opened in Washington on July 19, 2002, after six years of research and curatorial work, with the help of top experts: former directors or current high level officers from the FBI, the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), the Russian KGB, MI5 of Britain and other services. 
 The Museum reminds visitors that espionage goes hand in hand with mystery, adventure… and even romance. It is difficult to make a distinction between all those spy novels and action films we are familiar with, and the realities of day-to-day global espionage.
The Spy Museum recently opened a show on the ‘bad guys’ in the James Bond films, including evil Raoul Silva in the latest feature, Skyfall.
It covers the history of espionage globally, from Biblical

Spy Museum An ingenious KGB microphone and transmitter that could be easily concealed for intelligence gathering.

A carrier pigeon with a camera as payload: one of the strange devices on show in the International Spy Museum in Washington DC.

times up to the 20th century, and focuses on legendary spymasters - including Cardinal Richelieu of France, immortalized in The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas, and Mata Hari, the Dutch-born dancer who was executed by a French firing squad after being accused of spying for Germany during World War I.
Among its many treasures, the Museum proudly displays a 1777 letter from George Washington, in which he authorises an espionage network in New York. The Museum has one of the legendary Enigma machines, used during World War II by Nazi Germany, who were unaware that the Allies had cracked its code. That breach changed the course of the conflict. The Museum has collected videos and sound recordings of ‘real’ spies, who tell stories of how they were able to pull off risky missions - among them the evacuation of a group of US diplomats hiding in the Canadian Embassy in Iran in 1979, after Islamists took over the US compound. Ben Affleck turned that exploit into the Oscar-winning film, Argo. Included in the Museum collection are some


The ‘kiss of death’ lipstick tube developed by the Soviet KGB in the 1960s: it fires deadly bullets.

of the props used in the movie. Truth can be stranger than fiction at the Museum. It boasts “the largest collection of international espionage artefacts ever placed on public display,” many of them seen for the first time. Among the odd items: microphones hidden in fake tree trunks, cameras camouflaged in tobacco packets and a tiny pistol in the shape of a lipstick tube - dubbed the ‘kiss of death’ by KGB agents who utilised it. Alluding to the 1960s US television comedy series Get Smart, the Museum has a real shoe-phone. KGB experts inserted a transmitter, a microphone and batteries into the heel of a shoe belonging to a Western diplomat, so they could listen to his conversations and meetings. There is no time for boredom, as each room includes inter-active games for visitors: a favourite one being how to deactivate a bomb in a few seconds. “The world is counting on you, don’t mess up,” warns the game screen. Another test is a challenge involving different images, for the viewer to discover who is spying on whom. And for those doubters who question whether movie spy heroes would

Exhibition modules inside the International Spy Museum in Washington DC. really be able to endure extreme physical stress - such as hanging from the edge of a skyscraper or dangling from a crane there is a machine called ‘Your James Bond Moment’ that lets a visitor test his or her stamina.
A Museum employee encourages visitors to try out the Mission, which involves hanging from a beam at a short distance from the floor while being buffeted by strong winds - as if the person were hundreds of metres above the ground. She times the grip with a stopwatch. Most let go after a few seconds. And this is not just for kids - older children, and even adults, feel the excitement and satisfaction of being a spy.
With so many attractions, the Spy Museum attracts visitors in droves: around 700,000 a year, according to media reports. It is a top draw for tourists visiting Washington. 

orkers at a French factory hled three managers captive for a second day, after the owners announced that the would be shut down. The Managing Director, Technical Director and Financial Director of Depalor, a company that produces wood panels in the north-eastern Lorraine region, were being held in an office building. A trade union representative told France Info radio that the three were barred from leaving until the CEO of parent company Swiss Krono Group came to discuss redundancy terms for the 142 workers. The incident is the second case of ‘bossnapping’ in France in the last two months. In January, workers at a Goodyear tyre factory, which is also slated for closure, held two managers captive for two days to demand better redundancy packages. The Company eventually agreed to significantly better payouts. The Depalor factory was badly damaged in a fire last summer. The management later announced it would close the loss-making facility rather than rebuild it. The workers are hoping that a new buyer can be found. u

Pretty faces are the easiest to forget { Jena, Germany /DPA }


imply being pretty is apparently not enough to make a face memorable: in the absence of distinctive features, attractive faces leave less of an impression in our memory than unattractive ones, tests by German psychologists have shown. That has surprised the scientists. “Previously we assumed it was easier to remember faces perceived to be attractive, simply because we enjoy looking at them more,” said Holger Wiese, a post-doctoral researcher in Psychology and the Study’s lead author. Electro-encephalograms taken during memory tests suggest that the disruptive ‘emotional influences’ of attractive faces make it more difficult to commit a pretty face to memory. The Research, at the University of Jena, has been published in the scientific journal Neuropsychologia. The psychologists showed the test persons photographs of faces of similar distinctiveness - half of which had been rated as attractive, the other half as unattractive - for several seconds. Then the test persons were again shown photographs of faces and asked whether they recognized them. The number of ‘false positives’ was considerably greater with attractive faces. When faces do turn out both attractive and memorable, it is because they possess an ‘odd beauty’. The face of US actress Angelina Jolie, whom Wiese said was regarded around the world as a beautiful woman, is memorable because of her distinctively large eyes and full lips, he pointed out. “We remember such faces rather well.”u

22 { Peter Zschunke/ Karlsruhe, Germany/ DPA }

Re-assembled Mithraic Relief adventure novel,” said Katarina Horst, Curator of the Baden State Museum. She narrates the story.
 Sculpted around 150 AD, the Relief once adorned a Roman cave at Tor Cervara, which had been used for Mithraic worship for about 250 years. Then the cave was abandoned…and forgotten. In 1943, a US warplane dropped a bomb that damaged the Relief. After the War, the cave was entered, presumably through the bomb crater, and the thieves made off with fragments of the Relief.
The office of the Special Superintendent for the Archaeological Heritage of Rome did not become aware of the cave until the 1960s, when the “assembly of the jigsaw puzzle began,” Horst said. But the restorers from the National Roman Museum at the Baths of Diocletian found key pieces of the Relief to be missing – namely, the head of the bull and the head and part of the torso of Mithras. So the 2-tonne ‘remainder’ was

iver F. Morr, Restoration and Conservation Manager at the Baden State Museum in Germany, wears cotton gloves to push together two Italian-loaned pieces of the reconstructed Relief of Mithras from Tor Cervara in Rome. The German-owned God’s head is at centre. It is on show at the Karlsruhe Palace.

Uli Deck


lucky solution to what seemed like an impossible riddle has enabled German and Italian experts to reassemble a masterwork of an ancient religious cult, Mithraism. The marble Relief depicts Mithras, the Cult’s God of Light and Truth, slaying the cosmic bull - the blood of which was believed to generate life. The Religion, which may have had a Persian origin, was popular among Roman soldiers before the rise of Christianity.
The Relief was shattered in a World War II air raid. Pieces were then sold off by art thieves. The head of Mithras went to Karlsruhe, Germany, via Switzerland, and no one there knew where it came from. It might have remained a case of a bodiless head in Germany and a headless statue in Rome, if it had not been for some good luck. Europe has vast stores of stone fragments that no one knows how to recombine.
“It’s like an

G lobal

7-13 March 2014

Katarina Horst, Collection and Science Manager at the Baden State Museum in Germany, points to the triangular-shaped German-owned ‘head’ section, which completes the reconstructed Relief of Mithras from the Tor Cervara in Rome. It is on show in Karlsruhe Palace at the Baden State Museum in Karlsruhe, Germany. The Relief weighs two tonnes and was made in 150 AD. The antique artwork was damaged during a bomb attack, and then stolen and sold in parts put into storage…and forgotten again.
In 1976, an art dealer in the Swiss capital of Bern offered the Baden State Museum the head of a Mithras Relief. The Museum made enquiries but found no record of it being looted, so it purchased the item for 60,000 Deutschmarks (about 42,000 dollars).
 The Mithras head in Karlsruhe was identified as a missing part of the Relief in Rome in 1987, by a Swiss archaeologist, Rolf Stucky. “I became acquainted with the Relief in the National Roman Museum through an Italian colleague,” Stucky said. “The triangular gap where the Mithras head should have been, struck me immediately.” As luck would have it, the gap exactly matched the Karlsruhe fragment, a copy

of which he had seen in Bern. Putting photographs of the fragments together convinced Stucky that they were from the same work of art. Under the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property, ratified by Germany in 2007, cultural artefacts illicitly imported after 1992 can

be reclaimed by the country of origin. The Mithras head did not fall under the Convention, because the Germans had acquired it in 1976.
Deciding to eschew protracted wrangling, the Baden State Museum and Italian authorities reached a compromise. At the end of last year, the National Museum in Rome sent the rest of the Relief in two large crates to Karlsruhe, where it was carefully reunited with the Mithras head, over 10 days.
The largely restored Relief - only the bull’s head still remains missing - is currently part of the Baden State Museum’s ‘Empire of the Gods’ Exhibition on cults and religions of the Roman Empire. Mithraism is relevant to Germany’s past, because many temples to Mithras have been found on its soil, especially around Karlsruhe and in the valley of the Rhine River. There was a Mithraic temple in what is now the town of Osterburken, and also one in Heidelberg’s Neuenheim District. Cruder Reliefs from those two temples are in the Baden State Museum’s collection. “You can clearly see the difference in craftsmanship,” Horst said. “The Mithras Relief from Rome was made by a true master.”
 After the Karlsruhe Exhibition ends on May 18, the Relief will go back to Rome and the head will be loaned to Italy for 10 years. In return, the Museum in Karlsruhe will receive an item on loan from Rome.
“We’ll pick out something nice,” Horst said.

Hundreds of Sea Turtles found dead on Indian Coast { New Delhi /DPA }


ore than 900 Sea Turtles have been found dead along the coast in Southern India, conservationists said recently, blaming illegal fishing near the Turtles’ sanctuaries. Supraja Dharini of the Tree Foundation, a marine conservation group, said trawlers fishing illegally along the coast of Andhra Pradesh were not taking measures to stop the Turtles from getting entangled in the nets. She said more than 800 dead Olive Ridley turtles were washed ashore recently, and 100 more were found the next day. "Such a huge loss of the species in one night is more than three times the total number recorded in the past six

years in the region," she said; adding, "To say it is a tragedy would be a gross understatement." Dharini said more than 45 trawlers were fishing about 4 kilometres from the shore, days before the Turtle deaths, whereas fishing regulations make it mandatory for trawlers to operate at least 8 kilometres from the shore. Olive Ridleys are one of the five species of Sea Turtle found in Indian waters. The Turtles are classified as ‘vulnerable’, by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, and nest on Indian shores between January and April. The World Wide Fund for Nature estimates that there are 800,000 female Olive Ridleys worldwide. u

Explore the Big Hole in Kimberley { Berlin/DPA }


isitors to South Africa can view the Big Hole in Kimberley, while riding a vintage orange-painted Tram that dates back to 1887. The 20-minute Tour starts at the Kimberley Mine Museum, before taking tourists around the Big Hole - a disused opencast mine where diamonds were extracted until 1914.Tickets for a trip around the world’s largest man-dug pit cost 20 rand (1.60 dollars) and can be purchased on board. u

7-13 March 2014

S pecial

23 prakhar PANDEY

HUDA Flower Show


7-13 March 2014


G -Scape

Friday gurgaon 7 13 march, 2014 the change you want to see

Friday gurgaon 7 13 march, 2014 the change you want to see