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RNI No. DELENG/2016/71561


Vol-1 | Issue-23 | May 22-28, 2017 | Price ` 5/-

Good News Weekly for Rising India






Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi has hiked the spendings on minorities by 128 times in his tenure

The Union Environment Minister was a humble person with great thoughts for India



ANURADHA PAUDWAL Known for her cuckoo’s voice, what is not known is what she does for farmers


“water is life, river

our Mother” Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauds Madhya Pradesh Government for its efforts to save the Narmada



RIME MINISTER Narendra Modi has launched Narmada Seva Mission for the conservation of the crucial river, which is a lifeline of Madhya Pradesh. “It is a perfect document of future vision, it should be sent to all other states,” he said of the Narmada Seva Mission Plan document prepared by the Madhya Pradesh government. “I was born in Gujarat, the people of Gujarat know the value of every drop of Narmada’s water,” Modi said. Modi emphasised that the real task had just begun. “The journey has ended, but the real work has just started,” he said. The yatra was launched on December 11 last

year projecting it as the world’s “biggest river conservation campaign with public participation.” The Shivraj Singh Chauhan-led BJP government in the state envisaged the initiative as a people’s movement to protect the highly polluted river. The Central Pollution Control Board recently found that at least in three stretches of the Narmada, water quality is not even good for bathing. A 2016 study that analysed water samples from four different points of the river in two seasons-dry and wet in 2014-15-- found that the water was not conducive to sustain aquatic life or to be used for domestic purposes. The Narmada originates from the Maikal hills and charts its way

through Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Gujarat finally draining into the Arabian Sea. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said India’s economy is based on its rivers and it is the river Narmada that helped Madhya Pradesh achieve agricultural prosperity. RIVER-BASED ECONOMY “Narmada has the power to change farmers’ lives. We say, water is life and river is our mother. Our economy is dependent on rivers and will collapse without them. We have used Narmada haphazardly. So now, we have to make efforts to save it,” he said while addressing the concluding ceremony of the

150-day-long “Narmada Seva Yatra” here. “Narmada is behind the prosperity of farmers in Madhya Pradesh,” Modi said. “If we fail in our duty of protecting rivers, it will spell doom for the mankind. The Madhya Pradesh government has decided to plant trees for the conservation of mother Narmada. I was born in Gujarat and the people of Gujarat know the value of every drop of Narmada,” he said. Modi added that a river in Kerala “Bharatpuja” was about to vanish. Voicing concern over the condition of rivers in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said there are many which have no water. “Many rivers in the ...Continued on Page 2

02 Saving River Narmada ...Continued from Page 1

MAY 22-28, 2017


Quick Glance Narmada River is the lifeline for Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat’ The 148-day yatra concluded at Amarkantak Narmada Seva Mission Plan document released on the occasion

country are on the map but do not have any water in them,” Modi. Lauding the Shivraj Singh Chauhan government for taking up the campaign to conserve one of the country’s major lifelines, Modi said the Narmada conservation roadmap prepared by the state is a “perfect document for future vision”. He asked the Madhya Pradesh government to share it with other states. “The document was sent to me in advance and I had gone through it. It has the details of what is to be done, by whom, and at what time. In my opinion, it is perfect document for future vision,” he said. CHAUHAN LAUDED Congratulating the people, and especially Chauhan, for launching

the yatra that lasted nearly 150 days, the prime minister, who hails from Gujarat, said, “I, on behalf of people of Gujarat, for whom every drop of Narmada is important, Rajasthan and Maharashtra congratulate

A different Narmada Bachao

Narmada provides drinking water to 4 crore people and irrigates about 17 lakh hectares of land. MP generates over 2,400 megawatts of power from it


ARMADA river captured the attention of the nation when it became the centre of a decades-long struggle to stop the raising of the Sardar Sarovar Dam. Medha Patkar led the campaign that demonstrators said would displace thousands, who were not being compensated. This is a Narmada Bachao Andolan of a different kind, the kind that enjoys the wholehearted blessings of the Madhya Pradesh state government, the Narendra Modi led-central government and theformer environment minister for state, Anil Madhav Dave. Over the years, most efforts to clean up Indian rivers have run into the sand. Politicians and environmentalists differ over how to do the job, green laws are lax and most cleaning projects are blighted by corruption and delays. With large stretches still contaminated by toxic waste and sewage, the $3 billion plan to clean the Ganga – India’s showcase river conservation project -- is set to miss its 2018 deadline. River conservation has been in sharp focus since Modi’s government came to power. It set up a ministry to clean up the Ganga; it encouraged river festivals; and

promoted a bunch of other rivers also considered holy by many Hindus, prompting critics to allege the ruling BJP was using these conservation campaigns to appeal to religious sentiments and consolidate its support base along faith lines. It provides drinking water to more than four crore people and irrigates about 17 lakh hectares of land. Madhya Pradesh generates over 2400 megawatts of power from hydropower plants on the river.

Narmada conservation roadmap prepared by MP

is a “perfect document for future vision”. PM asked the MP government to share it with other states Madhya Pradesh for this great initiative.” Earlier, Modi performed puja at the point of origin of the river in Amarkantak. The Namami Devi Narmade Sewa Yatra, which was launched on December 11, 2016 from Amarkantak, concluded today after covering a distance of 3,344 km, traversing over 1,100 villages and towns. The prime minister has evinced keen interest in the conservation campaign. “Narmada Seva Yatra is an excellent mass movement to protect the Narmada & conveys a larger message of saving the environment as well,” Modi had tweeted earlier.

He said the yatra for the rejuvenation of the river was a nearimpossible task and a rare event. “It is unfortunate that if a government or a politician joins it (such Yatra), attempts are made to underrate it. If such a drive were carried out by any other country, it would have become a global talk. News channels would have rushed to cover it,” Modi said. The Prime Minister applauded Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Chauhan for undertaking the drive to plant six crore saplings and preparing a nature conservation plan. “I have studied the working plan prepared by the Madhya Pradesh government. Everyone has a role in it. It details how it will be carried out and who will monitor it. It is a perfect vision document. I urge Shivrajji to send this document to all states. It is a classic example of conservation of natural resources,” he said. SWACHH BHARAT SUCCESS The Prime Minister added that Madhya Pradesh was also ready with its plan to contribute to the nationwide goal of doubling farmers’ income by 2022. Talking about the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’s success, Modi said involvement of people was biggest power of democracy. “If we neglect people’s

MAY 22-28, 2017

Odisha Mangoes



ODISHA MANGOES TO REACH MALYASIA A new AirAsia flight opens the door for Oriya mangoes to Southeast Asia

involvement, their support, or their power, governments will not be able do anything. Howsoever good leadership it may be and howsoever perfect be the plan, we will not get success without people’s support. “Madhya Pradesh is a classic example of success on account of people’s support. In the latest survey, 22 of total 100 clean cities are from this very state,” Modi noted. Last week at a seminar the minister of state for environment Anil Madhav Dave said that if Narmada River was not protected, its basin would turn into a cricket ground. Dave had founded ‘Narmada Samagra’ which aimed at protecting the river, before he became the environment minister. Dave is known to have made Narmada his life’s mission. He hails from Barnagar in Ujjain District of Madhya Pradesh. BIG B’S SUPPORT Over the course of the yatra that was flagged off from Amarkantak, Bollywood celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan and public figures, including the Dalai Lama, lent their support to the campaign. Meanwhile, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan said that the Narmada campaign is a contribution towards the United Nations Paris Agreement to save the environment. “This is not only a historic day for Madhya Pradesh but for the entire world. This campaign has become a wonderful mass movement. Score of people took part in our initiative, with only resolution to save the Narmada. It is our honour that the prime minister is coming on this occasion,” Chauhan said. The Narmada yatra which was started in December last year from here concluded after covering a distance of more than three

The Narmada Seva Yatra Started: December 11, 2016 from Amarkantak Ended: May 15, 2017 at Amarkantak Total distance covered : 3,344 km Distance covered on the southern bank: 1,831 km Distance covered on the northern bank:1,513 km Total duration : 148 days Total Villages covered : 114 Villages and towns covered on the southern bank: 548 Villages and towns covered on the northern bank: 556 Narmada seva committees formed: 700 Narmada Seva registered : 74,000 Saplings planted : Six crores Narmada conservation budget: Rs 2095.31 crore* *For 2016-17 only

thousand kilometers and covering over 1,100 villages and towns. The Narmada river conservation campaign was launched in December last year. “The main aim of this journey is to give a message to the people world over to keep rivers, including Narmada, pollution free,” Chauhan said. He also declared the river a living entity, recognising the sacred status enjoyed by it for centuries. Various public functions and events were organised along the way soliciting participation from thousands of people as core team of 50 traversed 1831 km on the southern bank of the river and 1513 km on the northern bank. In the state’s budget estimate for 2016-17, Rs 2095.31 crore was allocated for the Narmada valley development. More than 700 Narmada seva committees have already been formed in the state and over 74000 Narmada sevaks have registered under the initiative to clean and protect the river. Monday’s concluding programme was live-streamed on Narendra Modi’s app.

Quick Glance SSB BUREAU


S part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Look East’ policy, mangoes from Odisha’s orchards are soon going to be exported to Southeast Asia. Put this down to connectivity. After Bangladesh, Odisha’s mangoes are soon expected to find a market in Malyasia, Indonesia, Thailand and other Southeastern countries -- thanks to a new flight from Biju Patnaik International Airport here. Malaysian low-cost airline Air Asia started its first international flight from the city airport to Kuala Lumpur on April 26 this year -- and that has prompted the state government to explore the possibility of mango exports to Malaysia and other Southeast Asian countries. “We are preparing a feasibility study to export mangoes to Southeast Asia. The Horticulture Department has already approached the Odisha Agricultural Marketing Board (OAMB) and other stakeholders, including some e-marketing agencies,” Sankarsan Rout, Assistant Director, Horticulture, said. He said they would help farmers’ cooperatives to sell their products to other parts of the country as well as overseas. “The mangoes of Odisha meet all quality parameters for exports. What we need to do is to tap the market. The government is in talks with various stakeholders for exporting the fruit,” Barada Prasanna Choudhury, marketing consultant to OAMB, said. To facilitate the global and domestic trading of mangoes, the Horticulture Department has set up Dhenkanal Fruits & Vegetables Marketing Co. Ltd. with processing and packaging facilities. The state government is also likely to

AirAsia’s new flight opens new vistas for Odisha’s mangoes They meet all parameters needed for exports to these countries Varieties to be exported include Amrapalli, Dussehri, Mallika, etc

rope in online trading platform NCDEX E-Marketing Ltd. (NEML) for marketing the mangoes, sources said. On the home front, north India and Mumbai have long been a destination for Odisha’s mangoes. Odisha produces nearly 800,000 tonnes of mangoes every year -- making it the sixth-largest mango-growing state in India, which accounts for over 60 per cent of global production. Of the mangoes produced in Odisha, high-end varieties like Amrapalli, Dussehri, Mallika, Keshari and Langada account for some 40 per cent. Dhenkanal, Angul, Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar and Boudh are the districts where a bulk of the mangoes are grown. The varieties that dominate the Indian market are Baiganpalli, Dussehri, Amrapalli, Kesari Totapuri, Latsundari, Mallika, Subarnarekha, Himasagar, Neelum and Chausa. Mangoes from India are popular in the Middle East, the Far East, the United States and European countries. The export volumes are expected to rise as new countires like South Korea and Iran have allowed the import of Indian mangoes. According to the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), India’s mango exports are likely to surpass last year’s level and touch the 50,000 tonne mark in the ongoing fiscal, buoyed by strong demand and supply of exportquality fruit.

04 Ministry of Minority Affairs

MAY 22-28, 2017



Ministry of Minority Affairs (MoMA) at the Centre has come out with new schemes to speeden up minority welfare activities across the country Quick Glance



HE word minorities evokes an image of round-capped Muslims though Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Parsis and Jains too fall under Minority category - which together constitute almost one fifth of country’s population. And contrary to the perception created by a section of politicians and a section of the media, Ministry of Minority Affairs (MoMA) under guidance of Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi hiked the expenditure on minorities by about 128 per cent compared to what it was under the UPA regime. Yes, of course there is no Muslim appeasement but since Modi government believes in sabka saath sabka vikaas, it’s performance during past three years has worked in upliftment and welfare of all communities including Muslims. The Ministry has undertaken overall development of minorities and kick started some new and innovative schemes to ameliorate their issues. It has imparted skill development training to the minorities, worked hard for their educational empowerment, improved infrastructure including internet network and digital literacy. The government has been working to preserve the rich heritage of minorities and their culture as well. A section of Muslims might be scoffing at issues like Triple Talaq but majority of Muslim women have welcomed government’s move whole heartedly. Not only that the government has launched a scheme called Nai Roshni to provide leadership skills to women from the minority community. It has been hailed as a unique initiative for women empowerment. The government has been providing loans at lower rates from the market through National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation. Total education sector budget for MoMA is Rs 2167 crore, of which 48 per cent is earmarked for scholarships alone. That shows the Ministry’s commitment towards supporting the

Minority Affairs ministry has enhanced expenditure on welfare schemes for its constituency The Ministry has launched several new initiatives like Nai Roshni, and Nai Manzil For the first time scholarship amounts are being transferred through DBT

Maulana Azad National Academy for Skills has been established to promote self-employment through development of entrepreneurial skills

youth in fulfilling their dreams. The Ministry has formulated myriad schemes to help uplift the status of minoritees. One of them for example is Nai manzil – in which Rs 650 crore have been earmarked for 5 yrs to educate and train 1 lakh minority students. Fifty per cent funding for this scheme is from the World Bank.

Another such scheme is the Educational Empowerment Scheme under which more than Rs 85.40 lakh minority students received scholarships while Rs. 2009 crore were released under the various scholarship schemes of this Ministry. Over 74.96 lakhs students received pre-matric scholarships worth Rs.1129.27 crore

while 10.44 lakhs students received post-matric and merit-cum-Means based scholarships. For the first time the scholarship amount were credited directly into the bank account of the students through direct bank transfer (DBT) mode. The amount released under these two schemes is Rs. 879.97 crore. Upgrading the Skills and Training in Traditional Arts/Crafts for Development (USTTAD) is one of the ambitious schemes to conserve traditional arts/crafts and build capacity of traditional artisans and craftsmen belonging to minority communities. Under the scheme of financial support to candidate clearing Prelims conducted by Union Public Services Commission and Staff Selection Commission (SSC) for Civil Services, Rs.2.96 crore was distributed to support 786 candidates. The Scheme of Padho Pardes was operationalized during 2014-15. Under this scheme 573 students received interest subsidy amounting to Rs.3.50 crore. Under Free Coaching & Allied Scheme including New Component (intensive coaching along with classes for students 11th& 12th with Science subject), 8118 candidates have been covered incurring an expenditure of Rs.31.34 crore. In a major financial reform, the government has decided to transfer all scholarships including the Pre-matric Scholarship Scheme directly to the students bank account through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) mode From 2015-16. Waqf: 3,60,577 waqf properties have been entered in WAMSI registration modules. Rs.3.00 crore has been

MAY 22-28, 2017 released to Central Waqf Council (CWC) for computerisation of records of State Waqf Boards”. An additional Rs.2.74 crore were released to Central Waqf Council under the Non-Plan scheme of “Grant-in-aid to WaqfsDevelopment of Urban Waqf Properties”. The government has released Rs.3.90 crore to National Waqf Development Corporation Ltd. (NAWADCO) under the scheme “Strengthening of State Waqf Boards”. It also notified the Waqf Properties Lease Rules, 2014. The government notified the Central Waqf Council (Amendment) Rules, 2014 during September, 2014. NAWADCO: National Waqf Development Corporation was established with capital of Rs.500 crores to develop potentially commercial Waqf properties to enhance income of Waqf. Extensive efforts have been made to create awareness about the objectives of NAWADCO. The senior officials have visited different states and have been successful in identifying more than 70 potential Waqf properties in urban areas. A land bank of about 218 acres has been identified for development as institutional/residential and commercial projects. The respective State Waqf Boards and Mutawallis (Manager) have been persuaded to convey their Expression of Interest (EOI) for development of these properties. NAWADCO has received Expression of Interest in respect of 22 properties in various states. NAWADCO, deployed professional real estate consultants of international repute to prepare feasibility reports for three Waqf properties in Karnataka and one in Rajasthan. The Karnataka State Waqf Board is actively considering issuing power of Attorney in favour of NAWADCO for developming their Waqf properties. NAWADCO has entered into a general MoU with NBCC Ltd., a Navratna public sector company having vast experience in the field of Project Management, Consultancy & in execution of Real Estate projects. A new scheme ‘Strengthening of State Waqf Boards’ of Ministry of Minority Affairs of Rs.300 crores has been taken over by NAWADCO to strengthen the State Waqf Boards and improve their performance. MsDP: During the last ten months, project proposals of Rs.756.62 crores were approved for different types of projects and Rs.770.89 crores have been released to the States/UTs under MsDP. The projects approved include 7 Degree Colleges, 85 School Buildings,

86 Hostels, 36 ITIs, 1 Polytechnic, 145 Health Centres, 95924 Skill Training for Minority Youths, Cyber Gram for 361257 students etc. Seekho aur Kamao (Learn & Earn): During the last ten months of 2014-15, 20720 minority youths have been trained at a total cost of Rs. 46.02 crores. During the last ten months of 2014-15, 68,675 women were trained at a cost of Rs.13.48 crores under Nai Roshni scheme.

Ministry of Minority Affairs

Literacy”, Ministry took initiative to include programme within the scheme of Multi-sectoral Development from 2014-15. To assist the Ministry, Common Service Centre (CSC) e-Governance Services India Ltd (eGSIL) of Department of Electronics and Information Technology has been engaged.

NMDFC: The Union Cabinet on 10thFebruary, 2015 increased the Authorized Share Capital of National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation (NMDFC) from Rs. 1,500 crore to Rs. 3,000 crore, and also modified the share holding pattern

NAI MANZIL: The Central Government in the Budget 2015-16, has announced the launching of an integrated education and livelihood initiative namely, “Nai Manzil”, for the benefit of the minority youths who do not have a formal school leaving certificate, i.e., those in the category of school-dropouts or educated in the community education institutions like the Madarsas, with a view to enabling

from 65:26:09 to 73:26:01 for Central Government, State Government and Private Institutions respectively. As a result, the equity contribution of Central Government has also been increased from 65% to 73%. NMDFC disbursed credit amounting to Rs.431.20 crores covering 1,08,747 minority beneficiaries. New Schemes: “Hamari Dharohar”: To preserve and showcase rich cultural heritage of minority communities, the Government has also launched the scheme of “Hamari Dharohar” to support the iconic exhibitions, supporting calligraphy and related crafts, and research & development. Cyber Gram: To impart “Digital

them to seek better employment in the organized sector and thus to equip them for better lives. The scheme also visualizes providing bridge courses to Madarsa educated youth to enable them to seek higher education. The scheme will be launched shortly. MANAS: In order to promote selfemployment for minority communities through development of entrepreneurial skills with credit linkages, MANAS (Maulana Azad National Academy for Skills) has been established by National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation (NMDFC), a Central Public Sector Enterprise under the Ministry, on 10th November, 2014. Good-Governance Initiatives:


Online Scholarship Management System (OSMS) for Post-Matric and Meri-cum-Means Scholarship schemes have been operationalized. A Management Information System for trained minority youths and Online E-Monitoring system under Seekho aur Kamao (Learn & Earn), the scheme for Skill Development, is being developed. An Online Application Management System for application, submission of documents and monitoring is being developed under NaiRoshni, the scheme for Leadership Development of Minority Women. Aadhaar linked Biometric Attendance System has been operationalized. Under Social Media, Twitter and Facebook are being used for updation of events. It is clear that Ministry’s focus is on all round welfare of the minorities through their educational empowerment, skill development initiatives and preserving their rich heritage and thereby integrating them in to the main stream. The Ministry will also focus on developing infrastructure facilities in Minority areas and on providing online benefits directly to the beneficiary accounts as far as possible. In fact, there was a fear among the minorities when Narendra Modi formed the government with an overwhelming majority that he might disband MoMA or at least stop funds altogether. However, on the contrary, allocation for MoMA has been sinficantly increased and new initiatives have been launched like Nai Manzil, USTTAD, and Hamari Dharohar. Schemes like Nai Roshini and Seekho and Kamao have been brought online through their own portals and all scholarship schemes have also been made online through the National Scholarship Portal. The Ministry has achieved its target for most of the schemes and there has been no shortfall vis-à-vis the budget announcements. The fact that MoMA has been doing well goes on to effectively demonstrate Modi’s firm commitment to his slogan ‘sabka saath, sabka vikaas’. The government has also rescued people from Saudi Arabia, Yemen, etc. So how can people make allegations that minorities are getting alienated? They are wrong. The PM has said everyone has the right to profess his or her religion and government will abide by the Constitution. There are no attacks on Christians now. There might be some stray violent incidents over beef consumption, but that is a law and order issue and concerned state governments need to tackle these issues sternly and effectively.

06 Initiative

MAY 22-28, 2017


CAPABILITY AT CAFEBILITY Looked upon as a burden till not very long ago, the disabled persons now run en entire café on their own, and are now opening up a second one in Varanasi

Quick Glance Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Divyang campaign from his constituency Varanasi These Divyangs have been running Cafebility as a café all on their own at Orderly Bazaar in the city The café has attained such popularity that they are now opening up a second one



EARS roll down Shina’s cheeks when she gets a pat on the back and a handsome tip for good service she offers to one of her customers. Shina, 23, is a Divyang and belongs to a very poor family. Till a few days ago, she was considered a burden on the family but today she not only earns her livelihood but contributes to improve the living standards of her father’s family. Shina is among 15 other Divyangs (disabled persons),who run the country’s first unique Cafetria which is entirely operated and managed by Divyangs in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s parliamentary constituency Varanasi. Known as “Cafebility”, this cafeteria serves its customers with a difference. In less than a year of its great success, Cafebility opened its second

Saji Joseph says each and every member of

Cafebility takes utmost care in serving the best food and coffee with a sense of ownership branch in a Mall in Varanasi. The first one was opened in Orderly Bazaar in September 2016. “The response was so overwhelming that we were almost forced by our customers to open another branch,” claims Saji Joseph, Director, Ability Foundation and Jan Vikas Samiti, which has been working for the welfare and rehabilitation of differently-abled persons all over the country for the past 20 years. LAUNCHING PAD Significantly, Varanasi was the place where Prime Minister Narendra Modi had coined the word Divyang,

a new name he had given to disabled persons to make society pay the respect they deserved instead of offering mere sympathies. It was from his parliamentary constituency, he began a country-wide campaign to make Divyangs self-reliant. Saji Joseph too agrees that they were very much impressed by the PM’s initiative in launching several schemes for the welfare of differentlyabled persons. “We also gave a thought in this direction and finally after several rounds of deliberations with like-minded people we zeroed in on opening a coffee shop cum restaurant to be run by Divyangs,”

claims Joseph. This is how India’s first Cafebility was conceptualised. But the task was not easy. Training and designing parts were the main challenges. The Ability Foundation tied up with famous hotels and government hotel management institutes seeking their help in training selected Divyangs. Donations were sought and once the staff was ready and the organisation had enough capital to invest, a space was hired in Orderly Bazaar. An architect was hired to design the interiors in such a way that it was easily accessible by general customers as well as Divyangs. Anti-skid tiles were used for flooring so that staff and customers could move around easily on foot as well as on their wheel-chairs. Most of the suggestions given by the staff members were accommodated in designing the Cafebility interiors and furniture. Special care was taken in designing the kitchen, since Divyangs had to manage it. It was made a little spacious for them to move around easily with their clippers and wheelchairs. Special lighting arrangement was made to give Cafebility an ethnic look. Most interesting is the Cafebility’s menu card. It is in Braille and vocal for visually-impaired customers and in usual print for general customers. Special sign language training was imparted to deaf employees to take orders and serve their customers better. About 15 Divyangs work in the new second Cafebility in Varanasi. They are given free food, accommodation to those who need it and the organisation takes care of their travel and other expenses,

MAY 22-28, 2017




WOMEN IN DROUGHT-HIT KARNATAKA TO REVIVE WATER BODIES A third consecutive year of drought has led to precariously low levels of water in reservoirs across the state, but a women’s group is out to change the situation

Sporting saffron T-shirts, these Divyang youth serve their guests and interact with them with a lot of pride

besides giving them Rs 3,000 as a monthly stipend. Sporting saffron T-shirts, these Diviyangs interact with their customers without any difficulty. Bheemraj, a victim of cerebral palsy, holds the fort at the billing desk quite comfortably. Shivam Ojha, a mentally-retarded person, mans the counter and Shina Kumari and Ritu Patel, both their legs poliostricken, make coffees. Others show their skills in the kitchen by preparing exquisite Mexican, Italian, Chinese, Lebanese and Mediterranean cuisine on the orders of customers. “Awesome food and hospitality served by awesome people. It is a great place to visit and experience how these people are making a difference in their lives by their sheer hard-work and zeal,” reacts Paritosh Dwivedi after having a coffee and snacks at Cafebility. Foreigners too are amazed at the new concept. “It is a great refuge from the chaos of riverside Varanasi,” wrote William Flynt. Saji Joseph claims that he and each and every member of the Cafebility takes utmost care in serving the best food and coffee in a very hospitable manner to the delight of customers visiting the café. “We have many who are our regular customers, and those who visit us for the first time always appreciate ambience and the concept,” he points. After Sheroes Café, which is run and managed by acid victims, Cafebility is a unique experiment which has not only provided a platform to Divyangs for earning their livelihood but has given them an opportunity to join the mainstream society with self-respect.



HE scorching heat and glaring sun don’t seem to deter the spirit of villagers clearing weed and silt from a dry lake in Bevanahalli, Mandya district. Sowbhagya, one of the labourers, from the 75-member group is worried about completing the task assigned on time. “The authorities gave us a go ahead only two weeks ago. This lake needs a lot of work and it will take at least a year to clear it. We will have to work on a tight schedule because the Southwest monsoon will begin next month,” she said. The Karnataka government’s inept administration of lakes made headlines earlier this year when Bellandur Lake in Bengaluru caught fire because industrial effluents were being let into it. Recently, an irrigation tank in a village in Hassan district caught fire for similar reasons. However, a third consecutive year of drought has led to precariously low levels of water in reservoirs across the state, with the government announcing that it will only be able to provide water for drinking purposes. Sowbhagya is one of the 3,000 women in Mandya district, who are busy reviving lakes, ponds and irrigation tanks in 31 villages. These women have come together to force the administration to give them designated work under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act.

Shakuntala, a member of the group working in Bevanahalli, has never seen this kind of clearance conducted in lakes before. “The lake has gone dry for the first time, leaving us with no water even for our cattle,” she said. It is this water crisis that the women are out to address. And, in the lake rejuvenation project they have not just found a solution to the lack of work because of the failure of crops, but they are also attempting to ensure that the water bodies in their villages help mitigate such situations in the future. The women voice their concern about an alarming trend of bore-wells in the village. “Action needs to be taken quickly as now bore-wells are being dug up to the depth of 600ft. This was completely unheard of here,” Sowbhagya said. In Devipura, around 70 labourers are working on the village irrigation pond that has accumulated dry clay at the bottom. Rathnamma, who is heading the project here, said, “This tanks served as a source of drinking water for us, our cattle

The women of Mandya

are convinced that this is the way forward, inspired by similar movement in Gulbarga

Quick Glance 3,000 women in Mandya district are reviving ponds, reservoirs, rivers They are forcing administration to give them work under MNREGA Failure of crops has forced them to work on water bodies

and also for domestic chores. Now, we have reached a stage where some of us are using bore-wells even for drinking water purposes.” Rathnamma added that this is the first time such work is being carried out. “We hope to increase the carrying capacity of the tank to ensure it doesn’t run dry like this again.” The women of Mandya are convinced that this is the way forward, inspired by the success of a similar movement by women in Gulbarga last year, where 28 water bodies were revived. KS Vimala, secretary of the Janawadi Mahila Sanghatane that came up with the idea, said, “We decided to focus on these water bodies because the state government did not seem to be concerned. We decided to take the lead and show them the way,” she said. Rathnamma said the battle had just begun and they would take it one step at a time. “We have faced opposition from within the villages and the administration,” she said. Protests to force the authorities to pay on time and to even let them continue with the work had become routine. “None of this has been handed to us. We have had to fight with the authorities at every stage, from asking them to pay us on time to agreeing to our demand to let us work,” Sowbhagya said. S Vishwanath, an expert on rainwater harvesting, said the movement has arrived at the right time. “This is definitely a welcome step. Rejuvenating these water bodies will definitely help the groundwater table. The government must study how efficiently water is used and create awareness among local communities about the rational use of water,” he said. The movement, meanwhile, is spreading to other districts. Work has begun in Kolar, which is an arid area where people traditionally depended on these water bodies.

08 Good News

MAY 22-28, 2017




Two global behemoths join hands to empower 1.2 lakh Assamese women into handling internet and mobile banking


YOUTH RESTORE GREENERY OF IMPHAL RIVER BANK They converted 100 square metres of riverbed into a small forests through intensive plantation


HE lost greenery along the banks of river Imphal which passes through Manipur’s capital city has been restored, thanks to an initiative undertaken by a group of youngsters. Thirty youth have been planting trees and clearing the weed along a stretch of the river bank since few years now. They undertake the drive every Sunday. The effort of this group has turned this Singjamei Bhagyabati Leikai stretch of Imphal river bank into a lush green resting place. The youths have even named the stretch Nongmai Shang means Sunday hut. “We had a beautiful riverbank with full of greenery when we were young. But it disappeared when a retaining wall was built sometime in 2007-08,” says one of the youth, Gemon. He became the first person to plant a number of trees particularly fruit bearing endemic plants. The initiative attained broader dimension with the support and involvement of many likeminded youths. The team started to convert the riverbank measuring around 100 metres into a small forest with their Sunday activities. The residents are now benefiting from the Nongmai Shang as the trees have started bearing fruits while the bamboo groves have matured. “Fruits from the riverbank forest have been used in more than 50 feasts in the locality while the bamboos and other plants are being used in social rituals,” Gemon said. Now with support from friends, family and our elders, we want to regain the lost greenery and also to keep the Imphal riverbank clean, he added.



ARALA BAISHYA, now in her late 50s, had always been dependent on her husband or sons and daughters for any kind of information. Be it the patriarchal nature of the society, ignorance or lack of education, the activities of Sarala and many others like her in rural Assam had always been restricted to kitchen and the backyard. However, the women of some remote villages are now getting to see the world

in a different way. Now they know what is happening around the world and even can manage to order the dress material of their choice online using mobile internet. Thanks to “Internet Sathi”, a novel initiative supported by Google and Tata Trust, under which some young women and girls are popularising internet among women in these remote villages. The Internet Saathi Project is being implementing by Gramya Vikash Mancha in Assam’s Nalbari, Kamrup (rural), Barpeta and Baksa districts. “The developmental objective of the project is social empowerment of at least 1,20,000 women from 557 villages under Nalbari, Kamrup (Rural), Baksa and Barpeta. We are going to train the community, particularly 90 rural women, about 21st century technology, providing doorstep Internet to them,” Pranjal Chakraborty, project

Most women in Assamese villages are exposed to mobile telephony Google and Tata Trust are making them conversant with these things Women are using internet banking with help of Internet Saathis

coordinator of the Mancha, told IANS. He said that 160 Internet Sathis have been engaged by them so far and these have touched lives of several thousand Assamese women. “The Internet Sathis go every morning to the field to meet groups of women and generate awareness about the knowledge revolution called internet. Then they show them how to use the internet on their mobiles for different activities taking from downloading informative videos from YouTube, searching for information of their requirement, be it on education or health or any other subject,” he said. A happy Sarala said: “We have three mobile phones in our house. Earlier I did not even know how to use them. But things have changed after the Internet Sathis started visiting out village. They are really helpful to women like us. “Now I can search for information and I have also learnt how to use PayTm and about other digital payments methods. I can pay the electricity bill online which saves time and does not require anyone to stand in the long queue.”

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THE STATE WILL EMPLOY SPORTING CHAMPIONS The rules for out of turn appointment to sportspersons who have won medals at various levels has been cleared last week SSB BUREAU


HE Rajasthan government has cleared a proposal for out-of-turn government jobs for national and international awardwinning sportspersons from the state. The Out of Turn Appointments to Sports Medal Winners Rules 2017 cleared by the Cabinet pave way for government jobs to those who have won a gold medal in the Olympics, Commonwealth, Asiad, Paralympics; national and world championships. “Jobs to medalist was an announcement made in the 2016-17 budget speech

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made by CM Vasundhara Raje,” said state parliamentary affairs ministers Rajendra Rathore. “They will be directly appointed as RAS, RPS or in state services,” said Rathore. He said that sportspersons

The Rajasthan government wants to support sportspersons It has amended the rules for out of turn appointment of sportspersons National medalists will directly be appointed in ministerial services

who win silver or bronze medals in the Asiad or Commonwealth games or have won world championships or world cups or Paralympics or have participated in Olympics will be directly appointed in state subordinate services. “National level medalists along with participants of Paralympics would be directly appointed in ministerial services,” said Rathore. He said that those eligible will have to apply within three years of winning the medals. “There will no age-limit. The required education qualification, for the post they are appointed on, can be attained by them in five years of being appointed,” he said.

MAY 22-28, 2017

SEPARATE DEPARTMENT OF DISABILITY AFFAIRS TO BE SET UP BY STATES The 15th National Review Meeting Made 26 Recommendations for Effective Implementation of Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016

Quick Glance The minister for social justice says the law must be implemented States should create seperate departments of disabilities affairs The ministry has set a world record in distributing aids to the disabled


HRI Thaawar Chand Gehlot, Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment while addressing the “15th National Review Meeting of State Commissioners for Persons with Disabilities on Implementation of Act1995” stressed for the need that States should create/set up separate Department of Disability Affairs with appointment of full time Independent State Commissioner in accordance with provisions of PwD Act, 1995 for effective implementation of the Act as well as welfare Programmes & Schemes of Education, Training, Skill Development and rehabilitation of the Disabled (Divyangjan) in the society. He chaired the opening session of the 2-day long National Review Meeting, which was attended by 11 States Commissioners and 15 representatives of the State Commissioners/State Government and representatives from Central Ministries and National Bodies under Ministry of Social Welfare. He stated that there is great need for empowering and strengthening the Divyangjan in the Country by safeguarding their rights and privileges entrusted by the Act. The Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment has become an important & prominent among all Ministries of the Central Government for making all round efforts for better education, vocational training & rehabilitation of the Divyangjan in society so that could lead a

State commissioners

should reveiew the implementation of the Act at the district and state levels vigoruosly respectable life. The Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment has set up new milestone & world record in distribution of Aids & Appliances to Divyangjan, launching innovative programmes and schemes for all round development and their Socio-Economic rehabilitation in the society. The Programmes and Schemes of the Ministry have been recognised and appreciated worldwide and has become role model Ministry of Government of India. Highlighting the Provisions of New Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016, the Minister added that the categories of Disability have been increased to 21 from the Presently 7 and now the privileges and Rights of Divyangjan have been brought at Par with the developed Countries. Sh. N. S. Kang, Secretary, DEPwD in his speech stated that the States should consider to create/set up separate Department of Disability Affaire in their respective states and the State Commissioner should act as watchdog





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for effective implementation of Act, Programmes and Policies for Welfare of Divyangjan in State. He should ensure that 4% reservation is given to Divyangjan in all Programmes & Schemes of the State Government and local bodies. He should take initiative and be instrumental in clearing of backlog of vacancies reserved for PwD through Special Drives and Wider Publicity should be given to new Act in their State. Dr. Kamlesh Kumar Pandey, Chief Commissioner for PwDs in his address stated that State Commissioners should review the implementation of the Act at State and District level vigoursly. They should organise Mobile Courts and conduct reviews at Districts. They should organise Special Camps for issuing Disability Certificate to all Divyangjan in the State at their doorstep and should mobilise people participation in their programmes. They should also ensure timely conduct of State Coordination, Executive and advisory Committee meetings at regular intervals and promote better & larger avenues for employment and Rehabilitation of Divyangjans. He also added that State should promote Skill Development and training programmes for rehabilitation of Divyangjans in society. On this occasion the State Commissioners and Central Government Ministries made Power Point Presentations showing various measures being taken by their respective states/ ministreis for effective implementation of the PwD Act, Programmes and Policies of Govt. of India for welfare of Divyangs. The Prominent Ministries were Panchayati Raj, Deptt. Of Personnel & Training, Deptt. of Revenue and Deptt. of Financial Services. The State Commissioners from J&K, North East States, Union Territories, Himanchal, Andhra Pradesh, Chhatisgarh also made presentations before the Minister.


AFGHAN PILOT ATTEMPTS TO SET A WORLD RECORD Afghan woman Shaesta Waiz, born in a refugee camp, seeks to become the youngest to make a solo round-the-world flight


N Afghan pilot hoping to become the youngest woman in history to complete a solo round-the-world flight was preparing last week to start the trans-atlantic leg of her journey. Shaesta Waiz, 29, was born in a refugee camp at the end of the Soviet war in Afghanistan before immigrating with her family to the United States in 1987. There, she discovered a passion for flying and obtained her pilot’s license — becoming the youngest certified civilian female pilot from Afghanistan. Now she wants to share that sense of freedom of

soaring high above ground with other young women. “When I found my passion — flying — that’s when I started to challenge myself. I started to read. I started to do better in maths,” Waiz said. Waiz took off from Daytona Beach, Florida on Saturday and has mapped out a route that will take her aboard her Beechcraft Bonanza A36 aircraft approximately 25,800 kilometers to more than 18 countries, before ending the trip back in Florida in August. During her 30 stop-overs, the engineering graduate and the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), which is backing her trip, will host events to try to get schoolchildren interested in science — notably aeronautics. According to ICAO figures, less than five percent of commercial pilots are women.

10 Health

MAY 22-28, 2017


SOON, TOTAL BODY SCALES There’ll soon be a scale that’ll measure more than body weight


PRIVATE SCHOOLS HAVE MORE OSA The startling results of a study by AIIMS shows private school students in south Delhi have much higher rate of sleep apnea SSB BUREAU


HE bathroom scale you use every morning may soon measure much more than your weight. Researchers in Lithuania are developing multifunctional scales that could one day measure more than 20 health parameters and warn us about potentially dangerous life conditions. A team of researchers at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU) have already developed a prototype of multifunctional body composition scales which can help identify the problems in the person’s arterial condition by the pulse arrival time from heart to the feet. The researchers are now improving the model by adding new functions and parameters. “We are continuously increasing the number of parameters, that can be measured using our scales. For example, alongside arterial stiffness, the scales can also detect cardiac arrhythmia (improper beating of the heart),” said Vaidotas Marozas, Director of the KTU Institute of Biomedical Engineering. “I believe, that in the future, the multifunctional body composition scales will measure more than 20 various health parameters,” Marozas said in a statement released by KTU. Body composition scales supplemented by handlebar and matching technologies can measure a person’s pulse through sensors on the handlebar and footpad electrodes.

OME 15 to 20 per cent of students in Delhi’s private schools are suffering from Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) in comparison to only two per cent students in government schools, an ongoing study by the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has revealed. The study whose first phase has been completed with over 7,000 students examined is being funded by the Department of Science and Technology and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). The age group examined as part of the study is 10-17 years. “We are doing a study whose findings are very dramatic and it reveals that in the government schools we hardly see OSA. However, in private schools we see huge presence of OSA in the students. It is an ongoing study but the data found in the first phase is so startling that we want to know what will be the result after the completion of the study,” said AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria. Sleep apnea is caused by recurrent episodes of upper airway obstruction

during sleep. Several risk factors, including obesity, male sex, age and heredity, have been associated with an increased prevalence of obstructive sleep apnea in the general population. As of now, the study has been conducted in 13-14 schools including

Father Agnel School and Delhi Public School R.K. Puram among others, and has found that the OSA rate is around 15-20 per cent in students of private schools. “The data we have gathered is from 13-14 schools. We will continue the study and see,” said Guleria.

TOMATOES ‘KILL’ CANCER? Treatment with the whole tomato extracts affected key processes within the cells hindering their migration ability


OMATO extracts can inhibit the growth and malignant cloning of stomach cancer cells, according to

Sleep apnea is caused by recurrent episodes of upper airway obstruction during sleep Several risk factors, including obesity, male sex, age and heredity, have been associated with it Private school students having more of it is because of their wrong food and lifestyles

Stating that there were several difficulties in screening the children, Guleria said that several parents refused to get their children screened claiming that they did not have any problem. Under the project, the organisers aim to cover the entire National Capital Region. However as of now only South Delhi has been covered. Speaking on the causes behind the high presence of OSA among the students of private students, Guleria says: “Students in private schools have a poor diet and lifestyle in comparison to students in government schools. Data also shows that government school students have more physical activities such as walking.” Guleria said that despite HRD ministry’s directive to schools to participate in the study, several schools did not cooperate. Commenting on the study which is in its third year, Saumya Swaminathan, Director General of ICMR, stated that OSA presence in school children is quite disturbing and there is need for them to improve their lifestyle.

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Quick Glance

a new study that paves the way for novel therapies to treat the deadly disease. Researchers analysed whole tomato extracts for their ability to tackle gastric cancer cell lines. “Their anti-tumoral effect seem not related to specific components, such as lycopene, but rather suggest that tomatoes should be considered in their entirety,” said Daniela Barone, researcher at the Oncology Research Centre of Mercogliano (CROM) in Italy. Extracts of San Marzano and Corbarino tomato varieties were able to inhibit the growth and cloning behaviour of malignant cells. Treatment with the whole tomato

Tomato extracts can inhibit the growth and malignant cloning of cancer cells Their anti-tumoral effect seems not to be related to specific components Treatment with whole tomato extracts affected key processes

extracts affected key processes within the cells hindering their migration ability, arresting cell cycle through the modulation of retinoblastoma family proteins and specific cell cycle inhibitors, and ultimately inducing cancer cell death through apoptosis. “Our results prompt further assessment of the potential use of specific nutrients not only in the cancer prevention setting but also as a supportive strategy along with conventional therapies,” said Antonio Giordano, professor at the University of Siena in Italy.

MAY 22-28, 2017


BACHCHAN MADE WHO’s VOICE ON HEPATITIS Health Minister JP Nadda said Bachchan’s voice is one that is listened to by people across the country



HE World Health Organisation (WHO) recently appointed Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan a IANS


glass of beetroot juice a source of dietary nitrate could dramatically lower as well as reduce heart attack risk, a study has revealed. Dietary nitrate is a compound that dilates blood vessels to decrease blood pressure, a leading factor for developing heart attack. The findings, published in the Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology, showed that the supplement can reduce overstimulation of the sympathetic nervous system that occurs with heart disease and causes the heart to beat faster.

Goodwill Ambassador for awareness of hepatitis in the region of Southeast Asia. Bachchan has himself had to survive a battle with the Hepatitis-B virus. The WHO in their official

Quick Glance Amitabh Bachchan has been made the WHO ambassador for hepatitis in the South East Asia region The WHO has officially said that Bachchan is now on board with them to enhance awareness Union health minister JP Nadda says that Bachchan’s is a voice that is heard across the nation

statement said that Bachchan is now on board with them to enhance awareness and intensify the efforts to curb the hepatitis epidemic. The legendary actor and philanthropist said, I am absolutely committed to the cause of fighting hepatitis. As a person living with Hepatitis-B, I know the pain and sufferings that hepatitis causes. No one should ever suffer from viral hepatitis. These public awareness programmes are going to be supported by the actor’s voice, which he will lend with an objective of amplifying the preventive measures and arrange for early treatment of hepatitis. Health Minister JP Nadda said, Bachchan’s voice is one that is listened to by people across the country, regardless of cultural, social, or economic background, and can make real change possible. We have witnessed this in polio eradication.





Chances are less in people who are phyisically active


ESEARCHERS have found that regular exercise may help decrease risk of Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia, characterised by progressive neurodegeneration that results in memory loss, compromised physical ability and loss of independence. In a study, published in the journal BMC Public Health, the team of researchers also confirmed that regular physical activity may improve the performance of daily activities for people afflicted with Alzheimer’s. “As there is no current cure for Alzheimer’s, there is an urgent need for interventions to reduce the risk of developing it and to help manage the symptoms,” said


NATURAL BEETROOT JUICE FOR THE HEART Dietary nitrate is a compound that dilates blood vessels to decrease blood pressure, a leading factor for developing heart attack “The study published in the Journal of Physiology found that acute nitrate supplementation using beetroot juice can decrease muscle sympathetic outflow at rest and during exercise,” researchers from the University of Guelph in Canada were quoted by The results revealed that the MSNA was lower when the volunteers drank beetroot juice compared to when they drank the placebo. “Surprisingly, no differences in blood pressure were detected

Quick Glance Beetroot juice contains dietary nitrate in large volumes Dietary nitrates could dramatically reduce heart attack risks Benefits of dietary nitrates are likely to involve neural contribution

at rest or during exercise,” the researchers said. “The study provides proofof-concept that dietary nitrate supplementation can modulate central sympathetic outflow and suggest that the established cardiovascular benefits of dietary nitrate are likely to involve a neural contribution,” they noted. So beetroot juice are for a happy heart.

the study first author Kathleen Martin Ginis, Professor at University of British Columbia’s Okanagan campus in Canada. “After evaluating all the research available, our panel agrees that physical activity is a practical, economical and accessible intervention for both the prevention and management of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias,” Martin Ginis said. Some of the work explored how physical activity improves the patient’s quality of life and the others examined the risk of developing Alzheimer’s based on the amount of activity in which an individual participated. The panel concluded that regular physical activity improves activities of daily living and mobility in older adults with Alzheimer’s and may improve general cognition and balance.

12 Hardayal Library

MAY 22-28, 2017


A RARE COLLECTION OF BOOKS The 150-years-old Hardayal Library in Delhi has preserved 1.7 lakh books and is completely autonomous

Quick Glance The library is 100 per cent funded by Municipal Corporation of Delhi It has a rare collection of books and manuscripts not found elsewhere Its headquarter is in North Delhi but has branches all over the city



O recorded history of autonomous rule is available in Delhi before the year 1863. But in 1862 there is some evidence found of a kind of municipality existing in Delhi. The Punjab Government’s municipality notification of 1850 was implemented in Delhi on December 13, 1862. The first regular meeting of the municipality was held on 23 April 1863 in which local residents were invited. The other meeting, held on June 1, 1863, was chaired by the Commissioner of Delhi and had been recorded in a proper manner. This is the history of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi. But a year before this historical event, the foundation of the Hardayal Municipal Heritage Public Library, funded from one hundred percent grant by the corporation, was laid. That year, 1862, is the point which marks the beginning of the heritage of the library. At present, this library has 28 branches. It has its headquarters in Gandhi Ground, Chandni Chowk, Old

In the year 1902 the

library was renamed Delhi Public Library. It was shifted to a smaller building in Kucha Bagh

Delhi. The library, is an autonomous institute. Thirty employees work in the headquarters. In the Delhi Assembly, Leader of Opposition in Delhi Assembly, Vijendra Gupta’s wife, Dr. Shobha Vijender who is a former Municipal Councilor herself, is its honorary secretary and Mayor of Northern Corporation is its exofficio chairman. The Hardayal Municipal Library

is a heritage of Indian history, in modern times. This is the oldest library in Delhi. The library, named after the leading freedom fighter, Lala Hardayal, who participated in Indian freedom struggle, has reached this privileged status after crossing many ups and downs. In 1862, an Englishman came to India and being highly fond of reading books, he was in a way instrumental and a key pillar in the laying down of the foundation of this library. During the months he stayed in India he had bought a great number of books. He was extremely fond of reading books and after having collected a very large number of books, it was probably not possible for him to take back all those

books with him to Britain. Therefore he placed them in a room. The room was named ‘Institute Library’. Later, when India became independent, the name of that room was changed to Laurence Institute. The library building was built between 1861 and 1866. Today the building is famously known as Town Hall. It was the headquarters of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi till 2012. The present town hall building was constructed in 1866. At the time it was called the Institute Building, and it was constructed at a cost of Rs 1.86 lakh. After the famous durbar was held in Delhi, the formation of the municipal corporation was changed again. The number of ex-officio members was reduced to three and the number of elected members was also reduced to 11. There were 11 nominated members as well. In the year 1902 the library was renamed Delhi Public Library. It was shifted to a smaller building in Kucha Bagh. A librarian, a clerk and a peon were appointed to it. At that time these employees were considered

MAY 22-28, 2017

It may sound strange but out of 365 days in a year the library remains open on 365 days. The reading room is open every day from 8 am to 10 pm

adequate for serving the Sahibs and Memsahibs. The story of this library becaming an important part of the freedom movement and its hallmark, is very interesting. On 23 December 1912 an event changed the fate of this library. Lord Hardinge was leading a procession atop an elephant in the Company Bagh area of Old Delhi when a bomb was thrown at him. The same Company Garden is now called the Gandhi Maidan. Lord Hardinge escaped with serious injuries from the bomb attack. Lala Hardayal, MA, had organised the procession. He was from Chandni Chowk. After the bomb incident, a committee was formed to investigate the matter. Foundation of the new building of Delhi Public Library was laid under the chairmanship of Raibahadur Lala Shiv Prasad,. This committee deposited 70 thousand rupees for this purpose. Khan Sahab Haji Bakshi Elahi alone donated Rs fourteen thousand. The Maharaja of Kashmir also donated ten thousand rupees. The library was renamed Hardinge Municipal Public Library. This was in the year 1916. The library was renamed and it was then shifted to a new building. After some time in 1941, when the freedom movement in India was at its peak, the library was renamed yet again, it was now called ‘Hardinge Library’. At the same time, an agreement was reached between the Library and the Municipal Committee. It was decided here that it would henceforth

work under the Municipal body. The hundred percent grants to the library will be given by the corporation, but it will be an autonomous body. With passage of time, a number of local people continued to participate in it. Later, much after the country’s independence, in the year 1970, it was named Hardyal Municipal Public Library in the name of freedom fighter Hardayal. At present, there are three Municipal Corporations in Delhi. The municipal corporation was reorganised in 2012. There was a slugfest among the three municipal corporations to take control of this library. But considering its autonomy, it was decided its headquarter will remain in Chandni Chowk, though its branches will be run in both the southern and eastern corporations. Regardless of the headquarter in north Delhi, southern and eastern Delhi municipal corporations continued lending it financial support. Thereby, no financial difficulties were encountered in the maintenance of other state-of-theart technologies such as headquarter, repair, reading room, furniture, fittings etc. in the library. Library’s administration is also completely transparent. A councilor of the corporation is made its secretary. Mayor of Northern Delhi is the ex-officio Chairman. There are other people in the management committee who meet from time to time to improve the library and take decisions for its

Hardayal Library

development. Besides the Mayor in the Managing Committee, there are six elected members from North Delhi Municipal Corporation. One member is from the South Delhi Municipal Corporation and one member is made from the East Delhi Municipal Corporation. Four members are elected from the Library. It sounds strange but it is a reality that out of 585 days in a year the library remains open on 358 days. The reading room of the library is open to common man from 8 am to 10 pm. The headquarters runs all seven days a week and all employees work on regular basis. At this time the library is going through a renovation phase. All modern amenities including air conditioning, are being arranged for the library. This facility is being provided by Chartered Accountants of India, New Delhi. An MoU has also been signed for this. As many as 31 newspapers, and 72 magazines in Hindi, English, Urdu, Punjabi are made available free of cost to readers

Few of the rare books in Hardayal Library


here. To prevent the books in the library from decay, they are being preserved though lamination and book-binding as many books and manuscripts are old and rare. The Times of India, Hindustan Times, Navbharat Times, Hindustan Hindi Dainik and Jansatta are prominently available here with 3123 Gazettes of Government of India, and Government Notifications from 1972 to 1998. Readers are given membership for a fee of two hundred rupees per annum. Fifteen hundred rupees is the lifetime membership fee. For an additional deposit of five hundred rupees customers can borrow books to be read at home worth up to a thousand rupees. The library’s ambience recreates the memory of old Delhi and the old days. At present, the library has stored 1.70 lakh books. These include known books in Hindi, English, Urdu, Persian and Sanskrit. This is the world’s first library to have collection of eight hundred rare books which is not6 available elsewhere. The old books available exclusively here include ‘A relation of some years’(1634) written by Traveli Begowgewen, Sir Walter Raleigh’s History of the World - written between 1676 and 1677, the Voyages of the World by Jan Francis Genelie Correrie, written in 1705, Charles Steward’s book- Tajweed-El-Waqayat (1828), Travels in India, written by William Hodges in 1794, Rigveda Code written by H. H. Willson in 1854, Satyartha Prakash written in 1881 by Swami Dayanand Saraswati. The Mahabharata, written in Persian language by Abul Razi, Qurane-Majid written in 1928 and the Quran handwritten by Aurangzeb in 1928. Such rare books highlight the value and the beauty of this library in Delhi. However, the highest number of branches -13 - are in North Delhi on account of the headquarter being situated there. South Delhi has 12 and East Delhi has three branches. People are getting all the facilities in all these branches. In the future, full computerization is being planned for the library, preparations are going on for special technical arrangements of microfilming in the libraries. The plans are to start a branch of the library in every ward of Delhi and to have more and more people join in this ambitious project deeply associated with its history. Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) is also trying to preserve its historical significance by seriously focusing on the entire project.

14 State News

MAY 22-28, 2017


MUMBAI’S ICE CRACK DOWN The rampant use of ice made from contaminated water is causing health havoc, and Mumbai does not want it


THE ‘CLOTHING’ OF ECO-FRIENDLY TOURISM Banning plastic in a tourism haven is no solution. Putting things in cloth bags is, and the bag is a brand by itself


HE Mumbai administration is raiding ice from roadside hawkers and petty restaurants. Actually, these days there is an increase in the incidence of gastro-disease. After the findings of a survey by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), it was found that the ice served with cold drinks on the streets is thick with e-coli germs which cause serious harm to health. Following this investigation, the municipality has started the action against this for the last few days. So far, about half a million kg of ice has been seized and destroyed. A similar campaign is also going on in Konkan-Thane. SSB BUREAU

A The Mumbai municipality had to take this tough call after the increasing number of cases of gastroenteritis. In the prevailing heat conditions, walkers are naturally tempted to find relief in a glass of chilled water, cane juice or cold drinks. But they all contain the same contaminated ice. The highest number of cases has been found in the areas of Govandi and Devnar. Apart from this, it was also found in abundance in Charkop, Kandivali, Santa Nagar, Poissar, Akureli, Bykula, Chinchpokli, Nagpada, Agrapada and other wards. The hawkers have opposed this action of the municipality. They say that they buy the ice from factories and so the administration should go into the ice factories to check what they are producing, but instead, they are targeting the poor hawkers. However, the administration says that it is the hawkers’ responsibility to save the people from a health hazard.

VOYAGE in a traditional canoe or a houseboat through the picturesque Vembanad Lake is enough to see why the south Indian state of Kerala is called “God’s own country’. A tiny island surrounded by the Vembanad backwater, Kakkathuruthu got listed in the National Geographic’s “Around the World in 24 Hours” a photographic tour of the most beautiful places in the world. Thanks to this distinction, the island and the backwaters started receiving both national and international tourists in hordes. The thriving tourism brings in business opportunity hoteliers, houseboat owners, tourist guides, tender coconut sellers, all seem to prosper. For 81-year-old fisherman Kumaran, however, a surge in tourism spells doom. “With the rise in tourism, our fish varieties go down. We fishermen are concerned about our livelihoods,” he says. Women from the fishing community are engaged in making Muhamma cloth bags. Kumaran’s concerns have been scientifically validated by a study conducted by ATREE (Asoka Trust For Research in Ecology and Environment), an environment protection organisation based in Bengaluru which says that the fish species in the lake has declined from 61 to 45. Strangely, while two to three minutes was all it took for fishermen to net a catch earlier, it is an endless wait now. And all that they might find on their bait is a plastic bag or a bottle.

HOW MUCH PLASTIC? Around 2,500 houseboats voyage through Vembanadlake. Nobody knows the exact quantity of plastic waste being thrown into the lake from them. Nehru trophy boat race, the regatta extravaganza that attracts at least one lakh people, including foreign tourists, is known to result in heaps of plastic waste; last year 35 gunny bags of plastic waste were collected by the students of nearby colleges, the House Boat Owners Association and ATREE after the boat race. Taking a cue from this, Vembanad lake protection forums with the scientific assistance from the Community Environmental Resource Centre (CERC)

Soon, villagers will have

to abandon plastic bags and start using ecofriendly cloth bags which are being stitched locally

Quick Glance Vembanad Lake has become a top global tourism spot While millions visit it, they also dump plastics in the waters Now the community says that everyone will only use cloth bags

of ATREE articulated a detailed action plan to clean the lake. A volunteer team consisting 30 fishermen observed 41-day long cleanup campaign and collected five quintals of plastic waste. The increasing plastic waste in the lake is a huge threat to the fish population. “Plastic bags and sacks floating on the water reduce the oxygen in the water which makes it difficult for the fishes, clams, and mussels to sustain,” says TD Jojo, project coordinator, ATREE Vembanad conservation centre, Alappuzha. For the survival of fish, the level of oxygen in the lake should be around 4-5 ppm (parts per million) as against 2-3 ppm which is the case in the Vembanad lake now. The clam cultivation here saw a 20 percent decline in 2016 from the year before, according to Muhamma Clam Workers Cooperative Society. Banning plastic could be the obvious solution to the situation. But that is not a sustainable one. President of Muhamma Gram Panchayat, Jayalal, a well-known environmentalist in the Alappuzha district believes banning would be a superfluous action that will create more hardship than good. He was looking for an alternative to plastic bags and found the right solution in cloth bags. At present 48 women, mostly from the fishing community, are engaged in making cloth bags from two stitching units started for the purpose. Most of them were earlier engaged in clam cultivation but had to take up stitching since clam cultivation suffered due to lack of productivity. “In the coming days, all villagers will have to abandon plastic bags and start using eco-friendly bags made out of cloths,” says Vijayalakshami, one of the women engaged in the bag making. Initial roadblocks included a dearth of waste clothes for bags. There was also the concern regarding changing the mindset of the people towards using cloth bags instead of plastic ones. The panchayat took the initiative. Through their “cloth bags instead of plastic” campaign started from the Muhamma AB government high school with assistance from ATREE scientists, panchayat members, teachers, parents and students, bundles of waste clothes were collected from various houses. “Muhamma cloth bags” are now a brand in itself in Kerala. An apt alternative to plastic bags and a commendable move towards sustainable tourism, Muhamma cloth bags have set an example we can now emulate.

MAY 22-28, 2017


FREE DIAGNOSTICS IN ASSAM Chief Minister’s Free Diagnostics Services is envisaged to ensure availability of minimum set of diagnostics services

Quick Glance

State News



Assam has ssen the launch of the CM’s free diagnostic services 16 districts will be covered through video conferencing for this CT Scan, X-ray and lab services will be provided free of cost



N a major fillip to the state health sector, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal launched the ‘Chief Minister’s Free Diagnostics Services’ for 16 districts simultaneously from Guwahati through video conference in a programme held at Assam Administrative Staff College in the city yesterday. Chief Minister’s Free Diagnostics Services is envisaged to ensure availability of minimum set of diagnostics services at health institutions. Under the scheme, CT Scan, X-Ray and laboratory services will be provided free of cost to all irrespective of APL or BPL status. While launching the service, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal termed the new initiative as the beginning of a new era and said that the scheme would immensely help the poor in their health care.Stating that the scheme will facilitate best possible diagnosis to the poor, the Chief Minister expressed confidence that the modern devices put into service will help in improving health care service in the state. “If health is not good, you can only dream but cannot materialize the same”, Sonowal quipped and urged people to take maximum advantage of the new scheme. State Health Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma in his speech termed the new initiative as a second generation reform in health sector. “We have already built up the foundation of our health sector. Now the challenge is to take it to next level”, Dr. Sarma said adding that the health functionaries would have to ensure quality in their service delivery to meet people’s expectations. The Health Minister further



Already 16 CT Scan centres have been made

functional under this programme and another 12 centres will be made operational within two months commented that alongwith the Chief Minister’s Free Diagnostics Service, the recently launched ‘AtalAmritAbhiyan’ and Mobile Medical Unit for Tea garden’ would be a major game changer in the health sector of the state. Already 16 CT Scan centers have been made functional under this programme and another 12 centers will be made operational within two months. In normal cases, CT Scan reports will be provided within 6 hours and emergency cases within 2 hours. All patient referred by government health institutions will be provided CT Scan services free of cost. The newly installed CT Scan machines are product of Make in India initiative of Govt. of India. For X-Ray service, a total of 99 health

institutions have been selected which will be connected through Teleradiology. 72 centers are commencing today and rest will be operational soon. All the patients of government health institutions, viz. – PHC, CHC and District Hospital will be provided X- ray service free of cost. Laboratory services at PHC, CHC and District Hospital will be provided free of cost to all through Hub and Spoke model. District Laboratory (Hub) will be set up at 28 district hospitals. These laboratories will be equipped with state of the art technology and equipments. Normal case report will be provided within 24 hours and emergency within 3 hours. A total of 56 tests will be covered under the Chief Minister’s Free Diagnostic Services.

Invest India was held at Udyog Bhawan in Guwahati last week.The meeting was conducted by Commissioner, Industries and Commerce, Dr KK Dwivedi to formulate and outline a Startup policy

for the state of Assam. Dr Dwivedi informed that anMoU would be signed very soon to set up a Startup Innovation Centre, a centre of excellence in the state, which would provide training, mentoring, handholding support to the startup companies along with partnerships with research institutions and MNCs. Invest India is a national investment promotion and facilitation agency, under the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India.



A high level meeting was held to boost the fledgeling sector SSB BUREAU


N view of the Startup India programme of the Government of India, a high level interactive meeting between the Department of Industries and Commerce, Assam and

The penalty has been fixed at Rs 5 lakh per hectare of illegal mining, up from the previous Rs 25,000 per hectare


HE Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has decided to go tough with illegal miners announcing six years imprisonment and 20 times more penalty on those caught involved in illegal mining in the state. The Yogi government on Tuesday passed Rules and Regulations, 2017 for mining in Uttar Pradesh in its seventh Cabinet meeting. Under the new rules, those caught with illegal mining will face six years imprisonment and 20 times more penalty. The penalty has been fixed at Rs 5 lakh per hectare area of illegal mining. Earlier, the same was only six months imprisonment and Rs 25,000 per hectare. The Yogi Cabinet offered yet another sop to farmers giving them concessions on buying good quality seeds. The cabinet also gave a go ahead to remove anomalies in pay and remuneration of legal and justice department of the state. It may be recalled that sand mining has remained a sore political hot potato and centre of criminal activity in the state for decades. In fact, a prominent Indian Administrative Service officer, Durga Shakti Nagpal had tried to clamp down on illegal sand mining in Noida, now known officially as Gautam Buddh Nagar, in the state. The viciousness of the mafia was such that she had been suspended on som grafted charge. Now, with a strong and determined CM in charge, it seems that the days of these dons are over.


MAY 22-28, 2017

“Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning

Albert Einstein

SHARAD GUPTA A journalist with 30 years experience of working with various publications


A TRULY GREAT MAN Union Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave was a humble person with great thoughts for the country and the society


NO MORE CORPORATE FUGITIVE PROPERTIES Vijay Mallya may be the first, but now the net is spreading


HE Narendra Modi government’s plan to enact a law under which any property owned by fugitive economic offenders involving amounts in excess of Rs100 crore can be confiscated and vested with the government for expeditious disposal, is a welcome step. The law is expected to deter economic offenders from fleeing the country like Vijay Mallya did as it hampers investigation, wastes precious time of courts, undermines the rule of law and garnishes. country’s reputation. The new law is needed as existing civil and criminal provisions in law were inadequate to deal with the problem. Under new law, a person or company where he is a promoter or key managerial personnel or majority shareholder could be disentitled from bringing forward or defending any civil claim. However, if at any point of time in the course of the court proceedings prior to the judgment, the alleged offender returns to India and submits to the appropriate jurisdictional court, proceedings under this law would cease. There would be constitutional safeguards in terms of providing a hearing to the person through counsel, allowing him time to file a reply and serving notice of summons to him, whether in India or abroad and the right to appeal so that there is no witch hunt or victimisation.


KUMAR DILIP Edited, Printed and Published by: Monika Jain on behalf of Sulabh Sanitation Mission Foundation, owned by Sulabh Sanitation Mission Foundation Printed at: The Indian Express Limited A - 8, Sector -7, NOIDA (UP) Published at: RZ - 83, Mahavir Enclave, Palam - Dabri Road, New Delhi - 110045 (India) Corporate Office: 819, Wave Silver Tower, Sector - 18, NOIDA (UP) Phone: +91-120-6500425 Email:,


With Anil Madhav Samagra building in Shivaji Dave leaving the Nagar. His love for rivers, environment and the world for heaven, the country has lost an Narmada was evident avid environmentalist from the name, murals and a keen social and painting in the worker – somebody building, “Nadi ka who practiced Ghar”. everything before preaching. He P R O P O G AT E D embodied Gandhian YOGA values as well as He would wake those of Rashtriya up before sunrise Swayamsevak Sangh and do yoga. The (RSS). He was founder mass Surya Namaskar of ‘Narmada Samagra’, programme held every which works for the year in Madhya Pradesh was conservation of the river and his brainchild.The first mass its catchment area. He also Surya Namaskar was held jointly worked towards promoting by his Jan Abhiyan Parishad bio-toilets in schools in and the state government on OBITUARY Madhya Pradesh. Dave January 25, 2007 in which ANIL MADHAV DAVE was also the founder of the 66 lakh school students Jan Abhiyan Parishad, an participated. From the next JULY 6, 1956 - MAY 18, 2017 umbrella organisation to year onwards, it is held interlink and empower selfevery year on January 12 on help groups and non-governmental organisations. the birth anniversary of youth icon Vivekananda To showcase his dedication to the Narmada and crores of people take part in the event. river’s cause, he flew along the river course in a Besides being healthy, Dave was a thorough small aircraft, traversed it, held public meetings, gentleman. He was unlike the general impression organised festivals on its shores, and found solution which people have about politicians. He was polite, to everyday solution to the problems of people gentle, soft-spoken, suave, sensitive, well-read and living along its banks. accessible. His fascination for a healthy body and mind did not stop at Surya Namaskar only. He THE RSS PRACHARAK would walk briskly every day. And he would walk Dave joined the RSS – the ideological mentor of whenever he was free or had to wait for somebody the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) -- as a child and whether in somebody’s house, office or at an later volunteered to be its ‘pracharak’ (full-timer) airport. That’s why his death due to a sudden heart after completing his studies. A postgraduate in attack came as a shock to people who knew him. commerce, he was involved in the JP movement in Brought BJP to Power in MP the 1970s. Dave took to flying early on as a National Born July 6, 1956, in Ujjain district of Madhya Cadet Corps (NCC) air wing Pradesh, Dave was a threecadet. Dave always led a spartan, time member of the Rajya low-profile and disciplined life. Sabha. Soft-spoken and So much so that he refused to amiable, Dave had friends accept a huge bungalow allotted across the political spectrum. to him by the MP Government Politically, Dave came in Bhopal after he was appointed into his own in 2003 when, to the Union Cabinet as Minister soon after he came from the of Environment, Forests and RSS to the BJP, he along Climate Change. “I don’t need with a few others set up a it”, was his simple reply. Earlier, group informally called Jawli he used to live in a small room - a name that comes up often in BJP state headquarters. Later, in tales about Dave’s hero, he shifted to RSS’ Narmada Shivaji. The group was tasked

Dave joined the RSS after completing his post-graduation, in the footsteps of his father, and also joined the NCC’s air wing

MAY 22-28, 2017

Dave was a trained

pilot, sailor and an environmentalist who had rafted down River Narmada with strategising the victory of the BJP led by Uma Bharati in the 2003 Assembly elections against then Congress CM Digvijaya Singh considered a formidable adversary by the BJP. He was the one who coined the slogan “Mr Bantadhar” for Digvijay Singh for all round failure of his government. The entire election came to revolve around this slogan only and this allowed BJP to come to power in M.P. in 2003 not to lose power in the state ever since. He emerged as a key strategist in the party’s victories in subsequent assembly polls in 2008 and 2013 as also the party’s performance in the Lok Sabha polls from the state. Dave was a trained pilot, a sailor and an environmentalist. He had flown over the Narmada and rafted in the river from its origin in Amartkantak to Bharuch in the Arabian Sea as part of Narmada Yatra. He had also launched the Narmada Chaupal where he would stop in villages during the course of his Narmada Yatra and interact with the local people to get firsthand knowledge of environment. He would also educate them about afforestation and the need to keep the rivers clean An author of several books, he was Vice President of the 10th World Hindi Conference in Bhopal organised by the External Affairs Ministry. Dave was first elected to the Rajya Sabha in 2009, and re-elected in 2010 and 2016. In Union Cabinet He was inducted as Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Environment, Forest and Climate Change in July last year after Prakash Javadekar was elevated as the Human Resource Development Minister. As the Environment Minister, Dave felt that green concerns and development can go together, a line also followed by his predecessor in keeping with the National Democratic Alliance government’s thrust on ease of doing business. He became a Union Minister when the Paris Climate Change accord had been reached and the environmental discourse had shifted more towards local concerns. In agriculture, he pushed for breakthroughs within the country so that the hard- earned money of farmers is not drained. He felt that organic farming is better but it should be scientific and modern. Amid long debate on interlinking of rivers, he favoured going ahead with interlinking of small rivers to see if it proved beneficial or not. According to his will, Dave’s last rites were performed on the banks of the Narmada at Bandraban near Hoshangabad on May 19. His last wish was that no memorial, institution, road or building should be named after him. He also willed that people should plant saplings and conserve rivers and ponds in his memory. A truly great man!





The author is a graduate in Computer Science from BITS, Pilani. He is presently helping to settle a migrant community, focusing on their education needs

Our dependence on the digital space is creating far too many unintended hindrances in our psyche. A timely reflection and balanced use is the need of the hour



HAH RUKH KHAN in his recent TED talk mentions with a grounded humility, “I was in my late 40s when internet happened. And I started tweeting like a canary in a birdcage. And assuming that people who would peer into my world would admire it, for the miracle I believed it to be. But something else awaited me and humanity.” He then explains how internet encroached upon his rights as an individual and the rights of his family members to live an independent life. Extreme reactions from the ‘digital crowd’ dented his perceived reality of his own life. We are living in some dangerous digital times. These are the times of contradiction, where on one hand the difference between our personal lives and public life is diminishing. On the other hand, the duality of our existence (perceived vs ideal) is drifting apart. Carl Rogers (1959), a renowned American psychologist and one of the major contributors to the humanistic approach to

psychology, has talked about the self image (the view you have of yourself) and ideal self (what you wish you were really like). The difference between these two determines our self-esteem or the value we place on ourselves. On social media, we are trying to create an image of ourselves which is quite near to the ideal self. We post pictures of our happy times, the celebratory meets, our travels, joyful check-ins. Virtually no individual posts about their deep fears, their sad times, their concerns and vagaries of their lives. This is a dangerous trend

where we are failing to accept our negative emotions. This leads to widening gap between our self image and ideal self. And the repercussions are life altering. Accepting our true self is not an easy task to do, for who doesn’t enjoy being appreciated and the instant gratification, even if it is at the cost of false belief. But, the long term prospects of such mindsets are catastrophic in nature. It requires timely intervention and efforts from our side to reflect upon our realities and the perceived realities and do the necessary course correction.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR which will be interesting not only to animal enthusiast or forest department people or from the zoologist’s point of view. It will be interest to everyone. According to Hindu mythology the well-being and happiness of a person can be judged from what he eats. Articles like this might be disgusting for many of us but we forget that it the basic necessity of life. Mayank Malhotra, Lajpat Nagar, Delhi

EATING AND SO ON... The article ‘Why It Takes You And An Elephant The Same Time’ is an interesting topic. This is a topic

FAMILY MATTERS I read ‘Family Matters in India’ with great interest. These days unless we celebrate relationships on an ‘International’ scale, we don’t seem to recognise its significance. But we in India know that family is the emotional, financial, psychological, not to forget the social buffer that

all of us need in this fast-changing world. Life is merrier and more Nitin Gaur, Sonepat, Haryana NASIHUR MUBARAK The report on Nasihur Rehman, the principal of a madrasa in Assam, who has taken up Swachhata in such a big way, was very heart warming. I do not think I should congratulate him for doing this despite being a Muslim. As he very rationally points out, in Islam, remaining clean is inherent as in all other religions. The reason I would like to congratulate him is that unlike many other teachers, he does not dangle his nose up in the air. he rather sets an examples which will live much beyond him, through his students, and may be through their children as well as a story told an ideal teacher. Mushtaqeen Ahmad Jamshedpur

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18 Photo Feature


MAY 22-28, 2017

Hunar Haat

The Minister for Minority Affairs, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi is going all out to promote the cause of minorities and has organised hundreds of artisans from across the country to hold the talent expose, Hunar Haat

Photos: JAIRAM 1

1. Crowds gather at the entrance 2. Filligree plastic chandeliers 3. Puppets made by Rajasthani artisans 4. Clay and ceramic utsensils 5. A danseuse from Rajasthan 6. Ceremonial chandeliers made from cloth 7. Regal crockery made of ceramic 8. A glass idol of Lord Krishna

4 3






MAY 22-28, 2017

Photo Feature




9. Kids watching stuffed toys from Rajasthan 10. Showcasing how cloth durees are made 11.A stall packed with crockery 12. A Kashmiri musician demonstrating his skills 13: Various kinds of ornaments for neck and arms 14. An old model of the gramaphone machine 15. Decorative model of a rickshaw 16. An old milkman’s vicycle 17. Model of a cannon


13 14

17 15


20 Railways

MAY 22-28, 2017


VIZAG, THE CLEANEST STATION Union Minister of Railways, Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu releases Third Party Audit Report on Station Cleanliness SSB BUREAU


ISHAKHAPATNAM in Andhra Pradesh and Beas in Punjab have been selected as the Cleanest Station in A1, A Category Stations respectively in the Third Party Audit Report on Station Cleanliness released by the Union Minister of Railways, Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu recently. The Minister also inaugurated Swachh Rail Portal on the occasion. Khammam station came second in Station Cleanliness in A Category though it was ranked at 285th position last year. Speaking on the occasion, Minister of Railways Suresh Prabhu said that Indian Railways started third party Cleanliness Index of Stations since last year. Railways have accomplished a significant improvement in cleanliness at station. This index instils competitive spirit among the stations. The biggest challenge for cleanliness at the platforms is visitors along with the passengers, even the toilets are used by large number of visitors who are not Railway travellers. However, Railways have to move forward. The focus is on Platform cleanliness, coach cleanliness, toilets cleanliness in the coach & track cleanliness. CLEAN MY COACH SERVICE Railways have introduced Clean My Coach services which is getting overwhelming response of the passengers, Four green corridors have been marked which are free from discharge of human waste. I urge the municipal corporation of the cities which have encroachments to come forward and cooperate in eliminating human waste from the tracks. He said that Vishakhapatnam has emerged as the winner in Cleanliness Index by securing Ist position in A1 category, Beas has emerged as Ist winner in A category station. Guwahati, Varanasi, Mughalsarai & Hazrat Nizamuddin Station have shown tremendous improvements, He said that lot of NGO’s, Students group have come forward to clean and beautify their stations. He also thanked & dedicated this achievement to the people in respective areas. Railways Minister dedicated a “Swachh Rail Portal” to showcase rankings of stations and trains, methodology adopted for rankings and

The survey was conducted across the entire country through interviews with respondents on the questionnaire on key cleanliness indicators A1 CATEGORY STATION



VISHAKHAPATNAM, East Coast Railway, Andhra Pradesh

BEAS, Northern Railway, Punjab


SECUNDERABAD, South Central Railway, Telangana

KHAMMAM, South-Central Railway, Telangana


JAMMU TAWI Northern Railway, Jammu Kashmir

AHMEDNAGAR Central Railway, Maharashtra


VIJAYAWADA South Central Railway, Andhra Pradesh

DURGAPUR Eastern Railway, West Bengal


ANAND VIHAR TERMINAL, MANCHERIAL Northern Railway, Delhi South Central Railway, Telangana


LUCKNOW BADNERA Northern Railway, Uttar Pradesh Central Railway, Maharashtra


AHMEDABAD Western Railway, Gujarat

RANGIYA JUNCTION North Frontier Railway, Assam


JAIPUR North Western Railway Rajasthan

WARANGAL South Central Railway, Telangana


PUNE Central Railway Maharashtra

DAMOH West Central Railway. Madhya Pradesh


BANGALORE CITY South Western Railway, Karnataka

BHUJ Western Railway,Gujarat


(Out of 75)

(Out of 332)

Quick Glance Vizag in AP and Beas in Punjab cleanest in different categories Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu also launched Swachh Rail Portal Railways have achieved significant improvement in cleanliness

stations/trains specific dashboards. This web portal http://www. will also be leveraged to seek passenger feedback on cleanliness on a continual basis. Minister of State for Railways Rajen Gohain was also graced the occasion. Chairman, Railway Board, A. K. Mital, Member Rolling Stock Ravindra Gupta, Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman, Quality Council of India and senior officials of the Railway Board were also present on the occasion. Adviser Environment & Housekeeping Management AK Tewari conducted the proceedings. SWACHH RAIL SWACHH BHARAT ABHIYAN Indian Railways is the third largest rail network with 66,000 route kilometre stretch covering more than 8000 stations. Consequent to the launch of ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ on Oct 2, 2014 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Indian Railways had also launched ‘Swachh Rail Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ to achieve the vision of ‘Clean India’ by 2nd Oct’ 2019, which

MAY 22-28, 2017 shall be the 150th Birthday of father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi. In the Rail Budget presented in Feb’2015, 2016 and 2017, series of measures to improve the cleanliness of stations were announced to take forward the momentum of ‘Swachh Rail Swachh Bharat’. One of the measures given in Feb’2016 Budget is ranking of A1 and A category stations based on regular periodic third party audit and feedback from passengers, with a view to identify unclean spots/gaps and to improve cleanliness standards and also to propel healthy competition among railway stations. Ministry of Railway (Environment and Housekeeping Management Directorate, Railway Board) commissioned a passenger feedback survey on cleanliness at major railway stations. The task of survey was entrusted to Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC). First survey conducted by IRCTC in 2016 by conducting interviews of passengers at the stations on various parameters of cleanliness and rating them on these grounds. The second survey was conducted by Quality Council of India (QCI) who with the help of their partners have conducted the survey of 407 major railway stations (75 A1 category and 332 A category stations) of Indian Railways. THE PARAMETERS The parameters adopted for conducting the survey are: Evaluation of Process of cleanliness in Parking, main entry area, main platform, waiting room,(33.33%) direct observation by QCI assessors of cleanliness in these areas (33.33%) and passenger feedback(33.33%). A 24x7 control room was set up and images were geotagged to monitor progress. The survey was conducted through interviews with respondents on the questionnaire on cleanliness indicators, which was done face to face by survey teams by visiting each of the 407 stations across 16 Zonal Railways. Every passenger was asked to rate the cleanliness of stations objectively on 40 different cleanliness parameters. Purely based on the survey on the cleanliness of stations and the analysis thereof, 407 major stations have been given rankings in this Report submitted by the survey agency to Ministry of Railways for scrutiny and further action. Final report is expected to be submitted by QCI shortly, which will include specific actionable items for each division. Ministry of Railways will take further action for improving the cleanliness standards at major stations of Indian Railways thereupon.




Despite her personal tragedy of losing 15 family members in a single day, she has shown her commitment to cleanliness


CITIZEN GROUP’S SUCCESS Local people have taken a decision to clean it up



ALPANA Yadav, 24, has been named brand ambassador for Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in Etah by the district magistrate and she aims to make the district open defecation free by year-end. The decision was taken after Yadav displayed ‘commitment’ for a hygienic lifestyle despite battling tragedy.

Fifteen members of her family, including her brother and grandfather, had died in a road accident last Friday. “As the girl had shown courage to move on with her life , I enquired about her well being. At first she was hesitant but then said that her new house did not have a toilet. We appreciated her commitment for a healthy life,” stated Etah DM Amit Kishore.



The marshals, tasked to fine people for littering, have collected Rs 80 lakh from five lakh people in the last 10 months IANS


HE role of clean-up marshals is rising in an attempt to keep Mumbai clean. The corporation had appointed these marshals a long time ago while increasing their role in Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. Their job is to monitor the cleanliness and punish those who are involved in throwing rubbish in public places. With their active participation of the last 10 months, these marshals have collected fines worth about eight million rupees from five lakh people. Most of these offenders are those who do not refrain from spitting and urinating in public places. There are also people who bring their dogs

for strolls on the streets and these dogs usually pee and defecate on the streets. The municipality is constantly appealing that residents of the city should help to keep Mumbai clean. Despite spreading this appeal and awareness, the number of people throwing rubbish is not being

HE campaign to clean Poisar river flowing in West Mumbai has started showing results. This river emerging out of the hills of National Park had completely taken the form of a drain. It had become a dumping ground that was filled with garbage. Before the arrival of the monsoon every year, the efforts of the municipality get intensified so that the rains should not enter into homes, streets and roads. But this time, local people consciously took the decision to do the cleaning themselves beforehand. They also organised ‘River March’ to spread awareness School kids also joined in this March.

Quick Glance The role of clean-up marshals is rising in an effort to keep the financial capital of the country clean The municipality is constantly appealing to the residents not to allow pets defecate on the roads The marshals have not just fined five lakh people but have also dissuaded many in the Gandhian manner

reduced. However, the municipal’s effort is to make people understand that they should put the garbage in the trash bins and should not spit everywhere. In spite of this, if no one follows the rules, penalties will be imposed upon them. Clean-up marshals have as much effort as is possible that people follow the rules by self-discretion. It is on record that these marshals, have collected fines from 500,000 people but they have also convinced 13 lakh people through the Gandhian method. The marshals have not only explained the situation to these people with love and affection but have rather joined hands to appeal that peoples should use only the thrash bines to throw rubbish.

22 Science & Technology

MAY 22-28, 2017


18-YR OLD CREATES SMALLEST SATELLITE The satellite is primarily designed to check the feasibility and performance of carbon fibres infused in the 3D material SSB BUREAU


N 18 year old boy Rifath Sharook from Pallapati, Tamil Nadu, has created a record by designing Kalamsat, the smallest and the lightest satellite, which has been selected by National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to be sent into space. The satellite interestingly weighs only 64 grams. NASA would launch the satellite on June 21 from the Wallops Island, which is NASA’s one of the official launch pads. It will be first time, when NASA would carry a satellite

indigenously developed by an Indian student. The satellite is primarily designed to check the feasibility and the performance of the carbon fibers infused in the 3D printed material. The duration



Scientists plan a completely new project to automatically observe pollution in the ocean



NDIA is all set to opt for automatic observation of pollution in the ocean to crunch data that will aid the tourism industry and could also come in handy in countering allegations levelled by developed nations against the country being a major polluter, according to a scientist.

“We have proposed a completely new project to automatically observe pollution in the ocean and see whether we can mimic that observation using a mathematical model. We will use those observations to understand the processes which are going on in the coastal waters and provide an estimation of the water quality,” SSC Shenoi, Director, Indian National

of the experiment into space post-release from a sub-orbital flight is 240 minutes and it is designed to function for a mere 12 minutes where it will be made to operate in a micro-gravity environment in the space. NASA along with an organization called ‘I doodle learning’ conducted a competition named ‘Cubes in Space’. Rifath participated in this competition where his satellite was selected fulfilling all the requisites of the competition. The main condition of the competition was to design a satellite which can fit in a 4 metre cube space, whose weight would not exceed 64 grams. The nomenclature of the satellite is in the reverence of late Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, India’s former President and renowned nuclear scientist. Talking about the project, Rifath says that he has chipped in multiple sensors into the satellite which will calculate the quantities like acceleration, rotation and magnetosphere of the planet. Rafith’s satellite is first to be manufactured 3D printing by the technology. This indigenous project has been fully funded by the ‘Space Kidz India’ foundation.

Quick Glance Scientists will use those observations to understand the processes in the coastal waters


AIR PURIFIER GENERATES POWER A device has been made which can purify air and generate power when exposed to Sun IANS


ESEARCHERS in Belgium have developed a device which, when exposed to light, can purify air and at the same time generate power.“We use a small device with two rooms separated by a membrane”, explained Professor Sammy Verbruggen from the University of Antwerp and KU Leuven (University of Leuven).“Air is purified on one side, while on the other side hydrogen gas is produced from a part of the degradation products. This hydrogen gas can be stored and used later as fuel, as is already being done in some hydrogen buses, for example,” Verbruggen said.The heart of the solution lies at the membrane level, where the researchers use specific nanomaterials. “These catalysts are capable of producing hydrogen gas and breaking down air pollution,”

It will be under National Centre for Ocean Information Services Earth System Science Organisation The programme will not only help tourism but also fight allegations against India’s pollution

Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS), Earth System Science Organisation, told IANS. INCOIS is an autonomous body under the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES). The proposal is already with the MoES and initial approvals have been given. Shenoi elaborated on the advantage of having an automated system in the ocean waters, which are known to have absorbed about half of man-made carbon dioxide (emission) over time. “First of all we will know how our waters are changing. These are issues which are always debated and we need correct measurements,” Shenoi pointed out. As for the tourism industry flourishing along the Indian coasts, the pollution forecast will assist in deciding a threshold of dumping waste into the waters. “Then we will be able to provide the forecast of the pollution that will help the tourism industry. Because tourism is picking up it will tell the government regulatory authorities how much we can afford to dump in the sea,” he said, adding.

Verbruggen said. “In the past, these cells were mostly used to extract hydrogen from water. We have now discovered that this is also possible, and even more efficient, with polluted air,” Verbruggen added. The device must only be exposed to light to function, according to a study published in the journal ChemSusChem. The researchers said their goal is to be able to use sunlight more efficiently, as the processes underlying the technology are similar to those found in solar panels. The difference here is that electricity is not generated directly, but rather that air is purified while the generated power is stored as hydrogen gas.“We are currently working on a scale of only a few square centimetres. At a later stage, we would like to scale up our technology to make the process industrially applicable. We are also working on improving our materials so we can use sunlight more efficiently to trigger the reactions,” Verbruggen said.

MAY 22-28, 2017

Quick Glance



There was a time billions of years ago when incessant changes in the Martian climate caused heavy rainfall



EAVY rain on Mars reshaped the planet’s impact craters and carved out river-like channels on its surface billions of years ago, says a study. Changes in the atmosphere on Mars made it rain harder and harder, which had a similar effect on the planet’s surface as we see on Earth, said the study published in the journal Icarus. The fourth planet from the sun, Mars has geological features like the Earth and moon, such as craters and valleys, many of which were formed through rainfall.

Science & Technology

Valley networks on Mars show evidence for surface runoff driven by rainfall. Although there is a growing body of evidence that there was once water on Mars, it does not rain there today. But the new study showed that there was rainfall in the past and that it was heavy enough to change the planet’s surface. “Many people have analysed the nature of rainfall on Earth, but no one had thought to apply physics to understanding the early Martian atmosphere,” said one of the researchers Robert Craddock of the Smithsonian

Heavy rain on Mars reshaped the planet’s impact craters and carved out river-like channels The fourth planet from the sun, Mars has geological features like the Earth and moon Although it no longer rains on Mars, it did rain very heavily billions of years ago

Institution in Washington, DC. To understand how rainfall on Mars has changed over time, the researchers had to consider how the Martian atmosphere has changed. When Mars first formed 4.5 billion years ago, it had a much more substantial atmosphere with a higher pressure than it does now. This pressure influences the size of the raindrops and how hard they fall. Early on in the planet’s existence, water droplets would have been very small, producing something like fog rather than rain. This would not have been capable of carving out the planet we know today. As the atmospheric pressure decreased over millions of years, raindrops got bigger and rainfall became heavy enough to cut into the soil and start to alter the craters, the study said. The water could then be channelled and be able to cut through the planet’s surface, creating valleys. “By using basic physical principles to understand the relationship between the atmosphere, raindrop size and rainfall intensity, we have shown that Mars would have seen some pretty big raindrops that would have been able to make more drastic changes to the surface than the earlier fog-like droplets,” said Ralph Lorenz of Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Maryland, US.



Perhaps aliens are harvesting energy from the Sun, it has been claimed after images emerged of monster objects circling our star SSB BUREAU


HE UFO hunter behind YouTube channel Streetcap1 first floated the theory after seeing a strange object with a line of “plasma” running directly from the Sun in NASA telescopic images of the solar surface. The channel posted a video to YouTube entitled ‘Is this a massive UFO feeding off sun energy?’

“I was not a great believer in this plasma sun energy theory, but this has got me thinking.” UFO blogger Scott C Waring picked up on the video. He said: “This UFO shot out of the sun yesterday but was seen by Streetcap1 of Youtube. “The UFO may have been using the sun’s energy to fuel itself or to recharge in some way, but it’s leaving at high speed. “Notice that the UFO is a glowing white, but the sun’s plasma is yellow. This tells

us the craft is made from a different material than the sun’s surface.” Later, Mr Waring posted his own Nasa image, taken by the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), a spacecraft with telescopic camera sent to image the sun and beam back high detail images, of what he described as huge UFOs orbiting the sun.



HUMANS AS GOOD SNIFFERS AS DOGS A recent study shows that humans can differentiate between up to one trillion different odours



ONTRARY to a long-held misconception, the human sense of smell is not inferior but may be just as good as that of mammals like dogs and rodents some of the best sniffers in the animal kingdom, say researchers. The human sense of smell was thought to be inferior because of the size of the olfactory bulb nerve tissue which sends signals to other areas of a very powerful human brain to help identify scents. However, the study published in the journal Science, showed that the human olfactory bulb is quite large and similar in the number of neurons to other mammals. “For so long people failed to stop and question this claim... The fact is the sense of smell is just as good in humans as in other mammals, like rodents and dogs,” said John McGann, associate professor at Rutgers UniversityNew Brunswick in the US. The idea that humans do not have the same sense of smell abilities as animals flourished over the years based on some genetic studies which discovered that rats and mice have genes for about 1,000 different kinds of receptors that are activated by odours, compared to humans, who only have about 400. But the study showed that humans can discriminate maybe one trillion different odours which is far more than the claim by “folk wisdom and poorly sourced introductory psychology textbooks”, that insist humans could only detect about 10,000 different odours.

24 Gender

MAY 22-28, 2017


POLICE OFFICER AS AN ACTOR The young IPS officer has proved that one can be good in policing as well as in theatrics SAURABH SINGH

Quick Glance


T is not common to come across a government officer who is passionate about her work, is equally dedicated to the social cause of empowering women, and is also devoted to theatre activities important cultural aspect of life. But Tejaswani Gautam, a young IPS officer has proved that it is possible to be good in all these three related yet different interests in life. Tejaswani was a law student studying in Delhi when she became conscious about the situation of women in India. Studying and living in Delhi is an advantage for young people as it offers them the opportunity to interact with a large cross section of people coming from different states of the country. It also offers them the chance to find exposure and new opportunities to express their ideas and talent. Even during her life as student she began taking active part in creating awareness among women regarding their rights and opportunities. Although she was just another college-going student living in Janak Puri colony in Delhi, Tejaswani had her sights on serious and higher missions in life. She decided that her life will not be just another repetition of the usual social rut. Fortunately her family encouraged her in her passion for seeking and achieving serious goals in life. Tejaswani’s mother was particularly keen that her daughter should continue her interest in cultural activities and in matters of social service even while studying hard for her degree. Coming from such a family in which the potential of the girl child was recognised and encouraged was a strong point in her favour.It goes to Tejaswani Gautam’s credit that she not only studied hard and did well in her academic career even while attending to varied interests such as street plays and social work but, she also worked for civil service competition and was selected for the IPS. It was a proud day for Tejaswani, her family and her friends. But she was not the person to take this achievement as the end of the journey in her career and goal. Her education, upbringing,

The IPS official has proved that it is possible to be good in policing and acting as well Acting had always been her first love since she was young and had been voicing social issues Being in the government, she, however, had to take official permission from her seniors

Senior police officials of Rajasthan were impressed by her dedication to work and also to her commitment to social causes

intelligence and commitment led her to bring out her talent when she was posted in Ajmer after her selection in IPS. Senior police officers in Rajasthan, the state where she was posted were impressed by her work and her dedication to other social causes. During the day she would work in office in uniform but after office hours she transformed herself into a social activist. Tejaswani Gautam planned and performed in place after her duties as police officer. But theatre and plays were for her not just a manifestation of interest in art and culture. It was a forum for bringing about a change in society by raising awareness about women’s rights. The plays that Tejaswani Gautam

wrote and presented were not meant for a conditioned theatres, to be watched by a sophisticated but perhaps a neutral audience. This form of art was directly meant to create a consciousness among people and bring about a change in society. Tejaswani’s social mission, however was not a casual exercise. Being a government officer, a police officer at that, she had to seek official permission from her seniors before any project that she planned apart from her routine work. She had to discuss and convince her seniors about the need to undertake such work in addition to her official duties. She also had to ensure that it would not lead to complications or controversies.

Once the formalities of seeking official were over, Tejaswani Gautam went about her work in a methodical and proper manner. She organised a regular audition to select actors for her group in the reserve police lines. The entire program was to locate such people who would convince the onlookers through their impressive performance and create a change of attitude in their minds. It goes without saying that the police constables who came forward to join her street plays group, too deserve special praise for their initiative. Initially she could find 11 constables from the reserve police lines to help her in her work. It is well known that the work of the police is not a bed of roses. It involves physical as well as mental stress and there is little public appreciation for a job done under so much strain. But a group of 16 police constables have been supporting Tejaswani Gautam in her work by acting in her street plays. Some of the actors in this group include people like Dinesh Gaur, Karmveer Dhankar, Shashi Gujjar, Anju, Mamata, Niramala, Suman, Prem , Anita, Ramkishore, Soni, Vijay Laxami, Rachana and Lalita. Tejaswani Gautam who is a probationer IPS officer in Bassi area of Jaipur is deputed as Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP). So far she has presented over 50 plays. These plays are based on problems and difficulties faced by women in Indian society. Since these plays are presented at street corners the audience includes people from all walks of life, residents of nearby colonies, passer bys, students, migrants and office goers. In some form or the other they are all

MAY 22-28, 2017




“In both, street plays and in police service there is no time or opportunity for a second take” Tejaswani Gautam, IPS officer posted in Rajasthan cadre, in an interview with Rajasthan Patrika TV, Jaipur replied to some questions that trouble many aspiring and ambitious students aiming for the civil services. An excerpt from the interview: From where did the inspiration come for her decision to join the civil service? The inspiration to join the civil services came from my father who encouraged me to achieve my ambition. I owe my success in life and career to the support that he gave me as a student and as a daughter. The Indian Police Service is a profession which is not one that exists in isolation from real life. It is a profession that is greatly related to the common public and every day matters that govern it. It therefore involves much public dealing and working at a very basic level, a great deal of field work and much understanding of grassroots issues. When did a love for street plays come into her life? Theatre has been my first love. For the past 14 years of my life I have been involved in acting and participating in street plays. During my school and college days as a student, I was very much involved in theatre activities. Street theatre is a very powerful and an extremely potent medium to preach an understanding of important matters in society. This is a medium and an interaction forum in which there is no formal stage, curtains or screen in street theatre. It marks a direct relationship with the audience and a involved in the social situation which is in the focus of the play. Tejaswani Gautam makes it a point to ensure that no one in the audience walks away with the misconception that what they have witnessed is just a form of harmless entertainment. She and her team with the energy that defies the hard work they have put in during the day, discuss the subject of the play once it gets over with the audience. This helps in clarifying several doubts and

direct connect with the subject in question. In this sense it is an unmatched medium to establish a connection with the general public. It is an entertaining presentation of some very serious social issues. In street plays there is no ‘re-take’. In police too there is no second chance, right? In street plays and in police service this is a very significant similarity. There is no time and opportunity for a second take in either. The response time in a street play without any curtains or props, and in police service, in which each minute is important, are crucial. Every second, every move and each decision can make a very significant difference to the work at hand. There is no time for revision or reconsideration in both fields. A single mistake can undo the impact of street performance, similarly even a brief delay in police activity can be devastating in more ways than one. How does preparation matter for

students? How did Tejaswani prepare for her exams from senior secondary to IPS level? I have studied different subjects in my student life. It is not the stream or the subject but my dedication to whatever I took up at a time that has made all the difference. I did my senior secondary in humanities from DPS, New Delhi. I had subjects like English, Geography, Psychology and Math in school. Then I studied in LSR college before taking up law at a later stage. All thses subjects have helped me to gain a comprehensive perspective on life and a theoritical understanding of basic issues. How many hours should be dedicated for studies? Concentration is more important than duration of time. It is scientifically proven that complete concentration is possible only for 40 minutes. This is why one finds that at school and university levels the prescribed duration of periods in classrooms generally does not exceed this limit. It is not humanly

possible to focus on studies for hours at a stretch. But the condition is that there should be no lapse in the absolute commitment towards the works and studies at hand and the consistency of purpose too is important. There should not be gaps during preparation, no days should go by without some work. Is it possible for financially weak students to try for IPS? Financial position should not be a matter of concern in the present times. Money or lack of financial position should not come in the way of a person’s career in the civil services. Students can study and prepare for the same on their own without much expensive assistance from coaching institutions and so on. There have been several instances of students who have cleared the civil services exams without coaching. These days most material is available on the internet and can be accessed by any one. Therefore financially weak students should not be discouraged or deterred by the fear of financial burden in preparing for the police services. What advice would you give to students and the young people. The young generation should first decide on the dream they wish to achieve. Then they should put in all efforts to achieve this dream. The enrichment of one’s dreams and career depends upon one’s efforts. Hard work, commitment. dedication and some support from the family these are the four factors which can lead to success and the fulfilling of ambition and dreams.

questions which the audience might want to ask. In the traditional background of a state like Rajasthan, issues related to the rights of women will naturally involve a great deal of intensive debate. It also involves sensitivity in handling matters that

appear to question traditional and conventional beliefs. A number of popular films, documentaries and TV serials have been made on the work and achievements of women police officers in which new and seasoned

actors have taken part. These representations of women in uniform have sometimes been convincing and sometime disappointing. But it is rarely that one comes across a lady police officer in real life who has a passion for acting, drama as well as social consciousness. Tejaswani Gautam is a real life example of a police officer who has used her education and social status for the upliftment of less fortunate women.

26 Environment

MAY 22-28, 2017


Quick Glance

GUWAHATI TO BE FLOOD FREE The city is very prone to monsoon inundation every year, but now the government has stepped in to take action to rid it of the annual menace



HE he Assam government has begun initiating measures to make Guwahati free from flash floods during the monsoon. Guwahati development department minister Himanta Biswa Sarma told reporters that the concerned departments have been directed to desilt all drains in the city as early as possible and take strict action against any earth-cutting activity. The order is part of the department’s project, Mission Flood-free Guwahati, to make the city free from flash floods during the monsoon. The minister added that the Guwahati Municipal Corporation, Kamrup (metro) district administration and the PWD to complete construction and renovation of the drainage system within this month and hold monthly meetings to discuss the city’s problems, including flash floods. Sarma informed that he had gone through the progress reports of desiltation measures submitted by the Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC). He said the meeting also discussed cleanliness

Massive encroachments on the hills and wetlands lead to floods at the slightest shower

drive after floods and installation and maintenance of 15,383 city streetlights. After the minister’s interaction with the media, Kamrup (metro) deputy commissioner M Angamuthu declared the road from Bhangaghar flyover to the Guwahati Medical College Hospital as a prohibited area. He directed GMC commissioner Monalisa Goswami to carry out necessary exercise to remove all kinds of encroachment from along this road immediately. Guwahati, the gateway to the Northeast, has been suffering from flash floods and inundation for over a decade. The worst affected zones in the city are Zoo Narengi road on both sides of Geetanagar hill, G.N.B. road from Guwahati Club to Noonmati, R G Barua road covering Nabin Nagar, Anil Nagar and Ambikagiri Nagar, Rajgarh road covering Pub Sarania, Lachit Nagar and part of Nabin Nagar, G.S. road covering

area of Ananda Nagar, Dwarka Nagar, MLA Hostel Complex, Mathura Nagar, Rukmini Nagar and Tarun Nagar and Shantipur - Bharalumukh area. Guwahati, said to be the country’s second oldest continuously inhabited city, has also been selected as one of the 100 Smart Cities in the country. Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority’s vision statement, which describes the city as one of the most admired state capitals of India, envisages 24×7 drinking water, a proper storm water drainage system, a modern and scientific sewerage system and improved public transport and traffic infrastructure. However, much remains to be implemented about the schemes mentioned in the statement. MAJOR EFFORTS Serious efforts to tackle flood in the city have been on since the past few years by

Guwahati, the gateway to the northeast, has been suffering from flash floods for over a decade Concerned departments have been directed to desilt all drains in the city as early as possible The order is part of the department’s project, Mission Flood-free Guwahati

the Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority with the help of the Water Resources Department, Government of Assam and Guwahati Municipal Corporation. In addition to the 6 existing pumps having total capacity of 7,000 litres/sec at the outlet of Bharalu River in Bharalumukh, 4 more pumps each having capacity of 1,667 litres/sec were installed in 2015 raising the discharge capacity to 13,668 litres/sec to pump out the flood water to the Brahmaputra River. Four new pumps each having capacity of 1,000 litres/sec are installed at Mora Bharalu outfall with Pamohi with a sluice gate with shutter having capacity of 30 cumec have been newly constructed. At Bondajan, one more sluice gate is being constructed that will have a capacity of 30 cumec and 2 new pumps of 1700 litres/ sec each are being installed. Dredging and resectioning of the Bharalu River from the Ganeshguri-Hengerabari road crossing point to Bharalumukh and Basistha River from NH crossing up to DeparBeel has been completed done. In addition, smaller capacity pumps have been placed at about ten different locations in the waterlogged areas of the city for draining out the water as quickly as possible. Dredging of the bed in the Mora Bharalu River for a length of 6.5 km up to the NH-37 crossing has been completed. Earthen drain alongside the G.S. road from Jorabat to Burnihat was widened. These slew of measures were necessary since the rains bring down a colossal quantity of silt from the hills, which in turn quickly fill up the city’s drains. Dumping polythene bags in drains is also a major reason for the choking of drains. This apart, there has been massive encroachment on the hills and wetlands, thus leading to floods at the slightest shower. The government has often admitted that over 80 per cent of the 19 hills in the city have been encroached, and some portion of land even regularised by influential people. The area of the water-body Deeper Beel, the Northeast’s only Ramsar Site, has shrunk from about 42 sq km to less than a fourth, just about 10 sq km, while the Barsola, Sarusola and Silsako beels too have shrunk rapidly in recent years. In some cases, even industries have been set up after encroachment of land in and around these water bodies.

MAY 22-28, 2017





ON-SCREEN MOTHER Chosing to play a mother at the age of just 30 was a decision that she took by herself



EEMA LAGOO, one of Bollywood’s favourite on-screen mothers, passed away on Thursday, 17 May following a cardiac arrest. Bollywood has often shown mothers in Hindi films portrayed as white saree clad women who are helpless and emotional fighting with poverty and corruption with tears. Nirupa Roy, Sulochana and Rakhee aptly defined such mothers on the silver screen. Actually, these emotions also fit with the word ‘mother’. But in Mahesh Manjrekar’s film, Vaastav, Sanjay Dutt’s mother came and shot her gangster son. This mother was played by Reema Lagoo. She won for Filmfare’s Best Supporting Actress Award. When Reema played Sanjay’s mother role she was only two years older than him.In an interview, Reema had told that she was very nervous in the scene where she had to shoot her son Sanjay Dutt in Vaastav. During the shooting of that scene, when Sanjay gave her a pistol, she was shivering. Although it led to her being typecast as a mother but Lagoo’s subsequent roles marked a distinct departure from the sad mother trope.

Unlike the typical Bollywood Mom, she played more vibrant roles

Actress Reema some of the Quick Glance Lagoo, best known biggest stars in She was born in Mumbai in 1958 for playing the the industry. and was named Nayan Bhadbhade. modern-day She was just 30 and died at just 61 Bollywood mother when she came Breaking a cast, she shot her ‘son’ in films represent to the limelight Sanjay Dutt in the film Vaastav the antithesis of as Juhi Chawla’s and won an award for that the mournful white mother in sari-clad mother of Mansoor Khan’s She was 30 when she came into limelight as Juhi Chawla’s mother Hindi cinema hit film in Qayamat se Qayamat Tak through her roles. Qayamat Se Born in Mumbai Qayamat Tak. on 21 June 1958 as Juhi was just 10 Nayan Bhadbhade, Reema Lagoo’s years younger than her. The prolific acting career spanned almost four actress soon became synonymous as the decades. Her mother was also actress. affectionate and genial mother, Mandakini Bhadbhade who was known sometimes to actors who were just a few for the drama Lekure udand Jaahalee on years younger than her. From Salman the Marathi stage. Starting her career as Khan, Sanjay Dutt, Shah Rukh Khan to a schoolgirl in Pune, Reema soon Govinda and Madhuri Dixit, Lagoo graduated to larger roles on Marathi played mother to all the top actors and stage and films. Later, she became actresses of the Hindi film industry. famous for portraying the “middle-aged, One of her most successful roles was modern, but understanding mother” on Hum Aapke Hai Koun, where she both, the silver and the small screens, to essayed the role of Anupam Kher’s wife

and Renuka Shahane and Madhuri Dixit’s mother. But in Bollywood, she became famous as an ‘on-screen mother’ of Salman Khan. She played his mother role in more than 11 films. When in 1991 film ‘Saajan’, Reema played the role of the mother of Salman and Sanjay Dutt she was 33 years old, while Sanjay Dutt was 31 and Salman was 26 years old. The beautiful actress was noted for her roles in several blockbusters like “Hum Aapke Hain Kaun”, “Aashiqui”, “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai”, “Hum Saath Saath Hain”, “Maine Pyar Kiya”, “Kal Ho Na Ho”, “Vastaav”, “Saajan”, “Rangeela” and “Kya Kehna”, etc. In Marathi, she gave notable stage performances in “Ghar Tighanche Have”, “Chal Aatap Lavkar”, “Jhale Mokle Aakash”, “To Ek Kshann”, “Purush Buland” and “Vitho Rakhumai”, etc. On television, after seen in prominent roles in “Khandaan”, “Shrimaan Shrimati”, “Tu Tu, Main Main,” “Do Aur Do Paanch”, Reema started her career again in Mahesh Bhatt’s “Naamkaran” on Star Plus. Reema had got Filmfare Best Actress Award for her role as mother four times.

28 Assam

MAY 22-28, 2017


ASSAM’S AADHAAR AGAIN The state government, now controlled by the BJP, has gone back on its electoral promise and shall issue Aadhaar cards to all residents, even migrants

Quick Glance The state administration will implement the programme The home department will act as the monitoring agency But this will not give the illegal migrants the rights to citizenship

provide direct transfer of benefits of government schemes like old-age pension, scholarships, public distribution system, and subsidy on LPG connection to the bank account of Aadhaar card holders by linking Aadhaar numbers with bank accounts.



HE state of Assam will again issue the Aadhaar card which was stalled three years ago in a change of policy by the BJP led government in the state. Replying to a question from a legislator, parliamentary affairs minister Chandra Mohan Patowary told the assembly that the state general administration department has been given the task to implement the programme while the home department will act as the monitoring agency. Aadhaar card is a 12-digit unique identification number issued to all citizens of India based on their biometric and demographic data. But in Assam some citizens in only three districts – Sonitpur, Nagaon and Golaghat – were given the Aadhaar card. According to officials, around 6.6 per cent of the total population of the state have availed of the card so far, while the enrolment rate in the rest of the country has been close to 90 per cent.

MIGRANT CONTROVERSARY The project has generated controversy in Assam owing to the apprehension that illegal migrants would end up receiving the card. The previous Congress government in the state was not too keen to extend the scheme to all the districts, while the BJP’s view echoed the sentiments of the local organisations in the state that the card ought to be issued only after identification of genuine citizens in the state. On several occasions, the BJP had made a case that updating the National Register of Citizens (NRC) would first have to be completed in the state for Aadhaar cards to be issued. The powerful All Assam Student’s Union (AASU) had been consistently making a case for identification and expulsion of illegal

migrants from the state. The minister, however, allayed fears that the Aadhaar Card would benefit illegal migrants in the state. He explained that there was no need to wait for completion of NRC update since Aadhar was not a proof of citizenship. He clarified that a person would be granted citizenship only if his name was in the updated NRC. He added that the government was keen to implement the project to put an end to the problems being faced by people staying outside the state. The idea of Aadhaar, or unique identification number, was forwarded by the late Planning Commission with the objective to provide every citizen an identification that would be used for efficient delivery of welfare services. The goal is to

The idea of Aadhaar was forwarded by the late

Planning Commission to provide every citizen an identification that would be used for welfare services

MISSED DEADLINES In Assam, the update of the NRC is considered essential for identification of genuine citizens in the state but it has been slow with deadlines being missed several times. Recently, the Supreme Court and Gauhati High Court have said that the residency certificates issued by gaon panchayat secretaries will no longer be considered a valid link document for inclusion of names in the NRC which was last updated in the state in 1951. It is estimated that more than 40 lakh applicants have only the documents issued by gaon panchayats. This apart, the apex court will soon hear petitions from several organisations in the state who have made a case for shifting the cut off year for citizenship in the state from 1971 to 1951. In the Northeast, Meghalaya is another state where the issue of Aadhaar cards has fuelled a controversy with several local groups opposing the exercise. The Khasi Students’ Union stopped enrolment drives in the state in July last year, demanding that the government should first come up with awareness campaigns to enlighten the people about the significance of the process. Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Mizoram have achieved moderate success in the issue of the card while the maximum progress has been registered in Tripura and Sikkim with more than 90 per cent of the population already been covered. Assam will again issue the Aadhaar card which was stalled three years ago in a change of policy by the BJP led government in the state. Replying to a question from a legislator, Patowary told the assembly that the state general administration department has been given the task to implement the programme while the home department will act as the monitoring agency.

MAY 22-28, 2017

Muslims in Ramlila


Female actresses such

as Roma Haider played the role of Sita in Ramlila showing great power in secularism Quick Glance Nawazuddin Siddiqi had been disallowed acting in the Ramlila in UP Muslim artisans, effigy makers and actors are key to Delhi celebrations



The robust heart of Delhi’s secularism shows in the fact that many Muslims are playing key roles in the city’s Ramlilas SATYAM


N Delhi preparations for the Ramlila festival have started after bhumipoojan. Durgapuja falls in September. And the Muslim actors and craftsmen are already here. Thanks to these artists, an atmosphere of communal harmony is witnessed in Delhi’s Ramlilas. Whether it is Ramlila Mahotsav of Navshri Dharmik Lila Committee of Lal Qila Maidan or Durgapuja by Sriram Lila Society of Dwarka the performance of Muslim artists is worth noting. But why? What do they get out of this? Last year, famed film actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui was not given the chance to act in the Ramlila in Muzaffarnagar’s Budhana. This issue stromed the social media. Siddiqui is a seasoned and polished artist, and he knows that if such things are given too much weight, it can take a communal shade. Therefore, he clearly said that festivals and celebrations are not related to any particular religion and community. GENERATIONAL HARMONY But Delhi is not Budhana. It is a city where Ramlila without Muslim actors and actresses cannot be imagined. It may sound strange but when we look at its past and present history, we will know that not for one, not two, but for three generations, Muslim artists have been working in Delhi’s Ramlilas for months without talking about their reimbursements. They are immersed in the name of Ram.

The extent to which Muslim participation is seen in Delhi’s Ramlilas is evident in the way in which in addition to playing roles, personages like Alam Ali from Farukh Nagar in Bhopura, along with 60 men, camp in Delhi for a month. When this correspondent spoke with Alam, he said that it is true that they get money for working during this month but there is no haggling over the amount. The committees pay anything, from 25,000 to two lakh. “We work hard and leave the payment to the discretion of the Ramlila organisers. They know well that we come just once a year. Therefore, whatever we get from them, we keep it in the name of Rama,” Alam smiles. Alam is not alone in coming to Delhi and camping here. Anwar Ahmad, Chandrapal, Lajim Khan, Ramjane and Idrish Ali are all busy with him at this time. The reason is that they have to start working for all the work ranging from making the effigies of Ravan in seven Ramlila areas of Delhi, the processions after the Durgapuja, and the arrangements for Diwali Festival.

This has been going on for three generations, and none bothers

HARMONY IN DNA These Muslim artists say that harmony and brotherhood is in India’s DNA. They say that the colour of human blood is the same, whether the person is a Hindu or Muslim, Sikh or Christian. The human blood does not smell differently whatever the religion. “That is why we think less about things like religion, pay less attention to such matters and also tell our workers to think only about the work at hand. If there is anything to think about it is what to do and how to do it. If this were not the case would it have been possible for us to continue this work for so long? This is our third generation which is happy working here.” Interestingly, the organisers themselves echo the sentiments of the Muslim workers and actors. Ashok Kapoor, Praveen Kapoor and Devesh Gupta say that since Ramlila is organised as a symbol of victory of goodness over evil, there is no question of thinking about petty communal issues. It is universal. For the last 20 years, Najeeb Ahmed has been making effigies of Ravan, Meghnad and Kumbhakarn along with his entire family. His hard work is known to all, so he is given the respect he deserves. “At the time of his departure, our monetary gift is only a token of our thanks. On his part he accepts this payment only on the condition that we

In Delhi Ramlilas,

Muslim youths like Mujibur Rahman and others get to play many roles, such as that of Kumbhakarn

will invite him again in the coming year and that he will accept our hospitality with pleasure,” says Gupta. THESPIANS THRONG Nawazuddin Siddiqui, who is now a Bollywood star because of his sterling performances, may not have got the chance to act in Muzaffarnagar Ramlila in 2016. But in Delhi Ramlilas Muslim youths like him get to play many roles, such as Urmila, Sulochana and Lakshmi. In Dwarka Ramlila the actress Rukhsar plays three characters Urmila, Sulochana and Lakshmi. Mujibur Rahman acts in Ramlila on the outskirts of the Red Fort, and plays the role of Kumbhakarna. Alam Ali performs in the CBD Ground, Ajmal Khan Park, and Najib Ahmad in Karjal Bagh, makes effigies of Ravana, Meghnath and Kumbhakarn. In Dwarka Sector 10, people come from far flung areas to watch the Muslim actress Rukhsar perform roles in the Ramlila. Here Chirag Khan plays the role of Indradevata. The Ramlila committee’s patron here, former MLA Rajesh Gehlaut says there is no question at all whether one is a Hindu or a Muslim. “These Muslim youths have a significant contribution in showing and displaying exciting events such as staging the war between Ravana and Ram’s army, showing Lakshman faint and, in fact, making the battle between good and bad seem all too real.” He says. Gahlaut said that whether it is Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, former union minister Murli Manohar Joshi, MP Tarun Vijay, local MP Sahib Sahib Verma and many others, each and everyone is highly appreciative. It would be unfair not to mention the Navshri Dharmik Lila Committee of Lal Qila Ground in any discussion concerning Delhi Ramlila. For the past 60 years, people wait desperately to go for ‘Darshan of Ramlalla’ and to see which group of performers will come and which Muslim character will play what role. Here, Mujibur Rahman’s role of Kumbhakarn continues to be the attraction for the audience. Twentysix-year-old Mujibar is a student of the National School of Drama. Mujibur took over the responsibility of the entire IT department in Ramlila. Last year he was first seen in the role of Kumbhakarn and his friends were absolutely delirious.

30 Interview Anuradha Paudwal

MAY 22-28, 2017


“I pray for the success of the cleanliness drive” Singer Anuradha Paudwal, who was recently awarded Padma Shri and whose hits include Aashiqui and Hero, says she had lost voice in her childhood due to some illness but regained it later. Excerpts from an interview with Tridib Raman How do you respond to Modi’s Swachh Bharat Abhiyan? I pray for the success of the cleanliness drive. I’m surprised that people are not careful about maintaining cleanliness in India while they are very cautious when they go abroad. In our own country they have the “chalta hai” attitude. You have mentioned farmers. What is your response to the news of farmer suicides? I have been working in the direction of providing in-house industries for the farmer families. I have tried to arrange for chilliesgrinding machines and for seeds. In Marathawada at the Lokarpan programme of Gunsanchar, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwatji had come to grace the occasion. He asked me what we were doing. I told him about Suryodaya. It is a good organisation but it is not too big and it does not have enough space for work. I’m basically doing the work of a bridge or the motivator who operates between the farmer community and the organisations which can help them. I know that awareness is very important and when a well-known person speaks it makes a difference. Therefore, I try to make a difference by speaking for the cause of farmers. You mentioned that you are working for women empowerment... The subject of women empowerment is very close to my heart. But it is one that is open to much debate. The subject of women empowerment

is linked to political games and the vote bank too. So very often the real strength of women is not addressed. My belief is that the hand that rocks the baby, rules the world. Women are the essential givers. She is Adi Shakti, she is the birth-giver, the preserver and the destroyer. She is the first school to which a child goes and gets trained in sanskar. What is your response to Modi’s “Beti padao, beti bachao” mission? Let us not mix up the issue of women with too much politics. Women’s education is very important because it is closely linked to children’s education. But let us not create an imbalance between two different areas. Let us not go overboard in linking up everything. In the present day world who is your inspiration? Sudha Murthy. I think she represents perfect womanhood. She is above all gurus. I have met her just once and was absolutely floored. At no point does she transcend certain boundaries. You have been helping the families of soldiers and martyrs who died for the country. I do not do this for publicity. I’m in touch with the families but I simply give and forget. I do not continue the association for too long as it might lead to disappointment and disillusion.

“Woman is birth-giver, the preserver and the destroyer. She is the first school to which a child goes and gets trained in sanskar”

Has the award been too late in coming? To be very honest, 10-15 years ago I thought of getting the Padma Shri award. That was the time when Hinduism and devotional point of view were taken very lightly. Therefore I decided that I would never give my bio-data for the award and I stopped waiting for it. It so happened, that about 11/2years ago I turned my attention and started working for poor farmers, for the down-trodden, and for the children who didn’t have sources to sustain themselves. I had started working for the cause of the army men

Quick Glance I try to make a difference by speaking for the cause of farmers I have been working to provide inhouse industries for farmers’ families

Women’s education is important as it is linked to children’s education

families and women empowerment. Suddenly, out of the blues, when it was the least expected, I came to know about the award. I didn’t believe it. When my sister told my mother about it she asked ‘What for?’. My sister answered that it was for my singing. My mother was very surprised that there could be an award for singing. What do you want to say about gaurakshaks? I don’t think it is a political issue. We have our own opinions about these matters. We do not have to be afraid of others and we need not listen to outsiders about how we should feel for the cows. What is your response towards the reports of violence and killings by gaurakshaks? I strongly believe that it is not a political but a personal agenda, caused due to personal enmity. It is not about the

MAY 22-28, 2017

Interview Anuradha Paudwal

cows but a matter of personal ego. It is all about instilling fear among people.

I was a great fan of Lata ji. I was hypnotised by her voice. It became a psychological obsession for me to sing like Lata ji. The situation was such that I became very ill and almost lost my voice. But I am a devotee of goddess Kali. After I recovered from my illness, I began to sing once again.

Do you believe in destiny? In 1971 I had got a big break. But in 1973, Jaidev ji gave me a real great break. 1976 was the year of important film releases. In the film industry, a strange thing is that very quick or impulsive judgements are made by people. While some are suddenly viewed as stars, others are seen as flops. I remember that there was a young girl from abroad who sang this one song and people started speculating that she could overthrow a singing legend. This is what I do not like. Such sudden judgements in the film industry are in opposition to the great struggle that go into the making of real legends. What has been the turning point in your career? The film ‘Hero’ was very important for me. The song ‘Tu mera janu hai’ contributed a great deal to my career. ‘Ashiquee’ too was very important in promoting my career. The song ‘Lal duppata’ brought me a lot of recognition. I had been in the film industry for very long but people suddenly began to see me in a new light. It was as if I had just started my career in singing for films. Visibility is a very important factor in the industry, unless one is visible, one’s talent is not noticed. Who are the music directors who have influenced and inspired you? Laxmikant Pyarelal are institutions in themselves. They have a special style which is unique. I have very high regard for them and there is lot to learn from them. It has always been a dream to sing for them. Jaidev too is an excellent music director. Nadeem Sharvan, Shankar Jaikishan, Naushad, and C Ramchandra too are great music directors who have the place of very high respect in my heart. I have sung with nearly all the important singers in the film industry like Kishore Kumar and Talat Mahamud, all except Lata ji. I have sung with nearly all the well known play back singers. Kishore Kumar is a treasure house of knowledge. He is full of newness but does not lose touch with the ground reality. RD Burman is another legend in the world of film music How did your career shape up after “Hero”? There was much high expectation after the film ‘Hero’. But this was


“I’m surprised that people are not careful about

maintaining cleanliness in India, while they are very cautious when they go abroad” the time for multi-starrer films with music albums sung by a number of playback singers. It was not a very happy time for me. I could not make a mark in a situation where I got to sing just one line in an album. At this time I was approached by the company “Music India”. I met Anup Jalota and Pankaj who told me that there is no market for devotional songs. They said that I should sing songs, not bhajans. But I was not interested in singing songs, I liked to sing bhajans. Then T-Series entered the scene. It was the new company in the world of music. Its main focus was to make cassettes and to sell the new and modern versions of old songs. Gulshan Kumar the founder of T-Series said that his venture was successful due to the blessing of Vaishnav Mata in whom he had great faith. I told him that he should then not confine his work to remixes of old songs but should try to make new and original music. It was the time when the songs like ‘Lal dupatta’ and ‘Jeena teri gali mai” were very popular. This was also the time when radio and Delhi Doordarshan presented programs on popular film songs. In order to include our new songs from our new albums, Gulshan Kumar thought of making films. This was done to help our songs to get

noticed, to become more popular among music lovers. Gulshan Kumar approached the director Mukesh Bhatt ji for this purpose. The rest is history. The film ‘Ashiquee’ was a hit and all its songs became extremely popular. What did you learn from your association with Gulshan Kumar? It was an experience of working with a group of people focused toward a common cause. There were no individual ambitions and no individual desires. This was the reason behind the superlative quality of music. All the people in the group thought only about music. Money was a factor that came much later. Gulshan Kumar was a blessed soul. There was no one like him. All the members of the group became wellknown and came into lime light, all because of him. You had to sing only for T-Series for a long time as the company promoted you as the T-Series artist. I was happy with this arrangement. I had no personal ambitions. All the ten songs of ‘Ashiquee’ like ‘Nazar ke samne’, ‘Dhire dhire se’ and all the other songs became absolute hits. After Gulshan Kumar I decided to leave the film industry. There is a story that you lost your voice in childhood.

You have been holding many stage shows in the past with your children. Yes, my children Kavita and Aditya always join me in these shows. Most of these shows feature devotional songs. Such songs are my first priority. Once I was in West Bengal for a stage show. During those days an item song was very popular and an artist was going to present the song. After this song when I went to the stage, I was quite apprehensive about the audience response. I was afraid that after the item song nobody would like to listen to devotional songs. The organisers had arranged for some dancers to perform behind me as I sang on the stage. But once I began singing, the audience rose up in protest against the organisers. They said that they did not want to hear me singing any other songs except devotional songs. They condemned the organisers for making the dancers dance while I was on the stage. A biopic is being made on Gulshan Kumar. I’m very happy that a biopic is being planned on Gulshan Kumar. I feel blessed to have worked with him. It is because of him that a mandir has come up in every house. How do you balance family and work? For me the family and children come first. I’ve been working for very long, but once my eight-yearold son stopped me from going out for a song recording. When I told him that it was important, he said “You are Anuradha Paudwal, not my mother” I immediately took of my slippers and went back to him. The role of a mother is important than any career. This is not to say that women who are contributing so much to the society are not doing significant work. But I believe that to create a good society a mother should first teach sanskar to her children. I want to repeat that the woman who stays back at home is not weak or useless. In fact, her role is very significant. I would like to say that my husband Arun Paudwal and my in-laws encouraged me a lot in my career. My mother-inlaw has been particularly helpful in supporting me.



EIGHT TIMES UP EVEREST The 44-year-old Nepali mountaineer has broken her own world record for the most Everest summits by a woman


MAY 22-28, 2017



44-year-old Everest from Tibet side Nepalese for the seventh time in mountaineer the last spring season. H EROE has broken her own “This time, she broke her world record for the own record,” Sherpa said. most Everest summits by a Lhakpa had reportedly woman after scaling the world’s scaled Mt Everest eight months tallest peak for the eighth time. after the birth of her first daughter Lhakpa Sherpa, the mother of and while she was two months three, conquered Mt Everest for the pregnant with her second child, the eighth time from the North Col report said. Without having any (Tibetan side), according to formal training on mountain expedition organisers. climbing, Lhakpa, who grew “Lhakpa reached the summit up with 11 siblings, first point at around 6:35 AM last climbed Mt Everest from week,” Mingma Nepal side in Gelu Sherpa, 2000, it said. Managing Director Before leaving for Tibet to She wants to at Seven Summit climb Everest, Lhakpa said climb Mt Adventure, was she’d prove Nepali women Everest for 10 quoted as saying by times, the can endure anything The Himalayan report said. Times. She bettered A former her own record of scaling Mt Everest store worker who ended her 12 years seven times. of marriage with a RomanianBefore leaving for Tibet in mid American climber two years ago, she April, Lhakpa had said that she believes in mental strength as the wanted to show that Nepali women key to success. have the courage and endurance to It is a proud moment for all perform their best despite all their stakeholders including the hardships. She reached the summit mountaineering community as a point along with Nima Dorjee Nepali woman set a new record on Sherpa. Mt Everest, Executive Director at Born in Makalu VDC of Nepal Mountain Academy Lhakpa Sankhuwasabha, Lhakpa scaled Mt Futi Sherpa said.


32 Unsung Hero



AT VICTORIA HONOUR! Kerala painter’s work to be exhibited in Victoria Parliament


painter from Kerala, Sedunath Prabhakar, settled in Melbourne, has become the first Indian painter to get an invitation from the Parliament of Victoria in Melbourne to exhibit his painting at the Queen’s Hall of the complex. The “Pride of Australia” exhibition will showcase portraits of 50 prominent Australians drawn from a wide and varying cultural, social and political spectrum on a 50-metre single long canvas. It would be displayed on May 24 and 25.

Vivek Oberoi donates 25 flats to Sukma martyrs’ families


OLLYWOOD actor Vivek Oberoi’s real estate company, Karrm Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd., has donated 25 flats to Thane-based families of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) soldiers who lost their lives in Chhattisgarh’s Sukma district after a group of Naxalites ambushed a road opening party (ROP) in March. The 25 flats will be allotted in Oberoi’s projects i.e. Karrm Residency and Karrm Panchtatva – phase 1, 2 and 3, in Shahapur district of Thane. Of these, 12 flats have been allotted in Karrm Residency.

RNI No. DELENG/2016/71561, Joint Commissioner of Police (Licensing) Delhi No. F. 2 (S-45) Press/ 2016 VOLUME - 1, ISSUE - 23 Printed by Monika Jain, Published by Monika Jain on behalf of SULABH SANITATION MISSION FOUNDATION and Printed at The Indian Express Ltd., A-8, Sector-7, NOIDA (U.P.) and Published from RZ 83, Mahavir Enclave, Palam-Dabri Road, New Delhi – 110 045. Editor Monika Jain