WHAT IF THERE WOULD BE NO TECHNOLOGICAL PROGRESS?

Man would be like the stone-age man living by depending on nature and its natural gifts. We would remain intelligent but ignorant about our intelligence. We could be content with the food we find in nature but would lack the desire to eat tasty food. In the modern age every man is busy running from one end to another in the process of doing his job, in the sense, to earn bread for his family. This he does because of the various opportunities and job options that he has due to his education.

But if there were no technological progress there would have been no education. We would only be looking up to the nature, experiencing the heat of the sun, rain, cold as and when given without any desire for beautiful roofs and shelters. Whenever we are hungry we would go in search of food and not behind the means to earn it. Parents would be free from trouble in the absence of demands for pizzas, burgers etc.

With no education there would be no competition and hence less violence probably. Demands for entertainment of the minds also would be absent. In the absence of technological progress means of communication and transport would not prevail. The atmosphere would be clean with no pollution anywhere. Priests would be busy trying to find solution to human problems by persuading the humble people to endure their hard lot as destined. There would be no need of yoga gurus or gyms as people would be exercising enough by walking long distances. There would be no need of counseling the minds about the art of living, since a person who has sufficed his hunger by whatever means is a happy person at the end of the day.

FDI in Indian Retail market

Doesn’t the Indian Cabinet enjoy a right to design a bill in the interest of the Nation and present it to the Parliament for approval? The Opposition parties  opposed  the bill of FDI in retail marketing tooth and nail and stalled the functioning of the law making body for a full  week.

Refusing the demand for shelving the bill totally, the government merely agreed to hold the bill  in abeyance  to be introduced at a later date.  This step not because the Opposition parties wanted  it but one of the government’s allies, the Trinamool Congress opposed the bill. And its view had to be respected .

Ms Mamta Banerjee’s stand was that if the Walmart and other international giants enter our retail  market, our Indian retailers would suffer and lose their job.

May I ask Ms Banerjee to answer some  questions connected with retail marketing?  Are we getting quality goods from our retailers?  Are all the items sold at fair price?  The answer is negative for both questions.

I wonder if our Political bosses are aware that the retailers have been too greedy and have been depriving the public  to the extent of  30 -40% profit on manufactured goods. They hve been swallowing the public’s share of the profit granted by the manufacturers? This has been going on  for over 40 years and the public does not know it.

Till the year about 1970, the manufacturers never printed the price on the manufactured items. Every retailer charged according to his whims. So, the  government  wanted the manufacturers to print  the sale price on the cover.  The  manufacturers came with a novel proposal that they would show the price to include 60-100% profit and  call it MRP (Maximum retail price);  the retailers must share this profit with the customers to any extent they liked.  Some took only 25% margin and gave the remaining to the customers. Some gave a nominal rebate of Rs. 5 -10. Over  90% retailers ignored this rule making themselves the real beneficiaries of the MRP formula. Thus the customers have been buying these products at a much higher price than intended by the manufacturer.

Very few retailers are considerate.  One electrical shop I know in Chennai has been observing this rule faithfully much to the astonishment of the customers.  For instance,  I bought an Immersion heater at Rs. 350 while the MRP marked was Rs. 525.  Did the retailer sell the item at a loss? No, he took his margin of 25% and transferred the rest to the customer. As a result, this shop is doing a roaring business.

One super market boasted that his shop  was an MRP market and never sold anything higher than the MRP price.  When I asked him, at what price he bought the items from the manufacturer or whole saler, he wouldn’t reveal it to me.

There you are, Ms. Mamta. The Indian public has been taken for a ride by these notorious retailers and you want to support them?

Go to any provision store. You  get rice and wheat mixed  with all sorts of  decorative materials such as twigs, stones and excreta and a small percentage of  rotten grains as well. Are they  quality material? Do the retailers  bother to sell clean  cereals in packets of sorts? They  cheat on the weight also.  You never get more than 900 grams when you pay for 1 kg material. Are the retailers being fair to their country men?

Let the TMC leaders carry out  a quality check of our retail market to get to know the truth and  also spot out the various tricks and other malpractices  being followed by our retailers.  When the multi nationals come, they may wake up and compete with them and the public will really benefit .An Indian  retailer will not suffer if he is honest and supply the material in  ship shape condition  at a competitive  rate.  An Indian customer then would opt for the Indian retailer and not enter the multi national shops.

Incidentally, it should the National policy that the profit margin should not be more than 25% of the ex factory price or market price. Give up the practice of  printing MRP approach and merely show, “Saleprice”.

 

STREE SHAKTI

Women hold up one half of the sky, make up one half of the world’s task force and fulfil one half of the planet’s potential. In women lie nature’s best qualities of motherhood, compassion, humanity and love. Since they have been blessed with the capacity for giving and nurturing life, women also have the capacity for a deep commitment for preserving and nourishing not only their own offspring, but of the entire planet world.

After they have been downtrodden and disfranchised for centuries, women have developed unparalleled skills of frugality, economy and resource management. They have been bestowed with softer and gentler qualities therefore women eschew wars, violence and destruction of the planet. The tragedy of human race as seen is that, for too long muscle and brute power ascendant over the emotional and spiritual strength. Looking at the mess that the world entered lead to the realization that another approach is required. To women then, the world must turn to bring healing and spiritual qualities of positivity and patience.

That is the time women stepped out of the shadows to take their rightful place beside men in steering the course of the future. One has to look at the women who have broken the shackles of their conditioning, from Rani of Jhansi to Helen Keller-the deaf and dum genius, Indira Gandhi to Kalpana Chawla. Just like a word is inseparable from its meaning, the name Ela Bhat is inseparable from the SEWA- Self-employed women’s association. She has rescued thousands of women by giving financial help. In 2010 she was awarded the Niwano Peace Prize for the upliftment of poor women. She also received the first ever Global Fairness Award by Clindent in Ahmadabad.

Kiran Mazumdar Shaw is an Indian businesswoman, technocrat, innovator and the founder of Biocon, the leading bio-technology enterprise based in Banglore. She has spearheaded its evolution and in her pursuits, she faced many challenges but never gave up. With her steering Biocon became the first to receive US funding. Her pioneering work earned her the Padmashree in 1989 and Padmabhushan in 2005 from the govt of India. She is also named among the hundred most influential people by the Times magazine and also in the Forbes list, Nikai Asian Prize 2009 etc.

Today there are many women organizations fighting many causes for the well-being and safety of women. This shows and makes us recognize that when a power of woman is unbound and unleashed there is no force on earth that can stop her from achieving her goals and realizing her dreams.

Yet much remains to be done. The memory of too many centuries of separation still haunts the women and holds them back from coming into their own. They are still to realize the extent of their true strength and their enormous potentiality.

Let each woman stand as an inspiration to other women. Women are the nature’s finest force and the planet’s cherished hope. AND THE TIME HAS COME FOR THEM TO EMERGE AS LEADERS IN THEIR OWN RIGHT

JOINT FAMILY

In time of test,’ family is the best.’ All the hurdles of the day are eased at the end of the day when you are back with your family.
‘Joint’ means tied together. A joint family with number of members definitely sounds more secure. We can find many solutions or many helping hands. One would definitely be in less danger if one’s own kith and kin are fun to be with.
But many times members of a joint family never really speak their minds to one another. They maintain an atmosphere of unreality. Each one lives in an atmosphere of suppressed ill-feeling. ‘Unity in diversity’ if maintained then a joint family may succeed. Having individual independence in one’s own private decision making, finances, entertainment etc and by maintaining all round unity, can help survive a joint family.
Just like India is a country with different languages, caste & religion, so also a joint family has people with different ideas & behavioral habits. If one respects & recognizes each other’s views as well as tolerate or each other’s behavior & thinking, then the fruits of a joint family can surely be enjoyed.
The strength of a man is portrayed by his capacity to adjust to the different minds and situations in a joint family. If he can adjust to the ifs & buts at home, then he can surely adjust with his outside world. Truly speaking our public affections begin in our families. No cold relation can be zealous citizen. Blood relations may be thicker but they can be nastier too. If members of a family do not open up, then a joint family may become a home of all social evils and a hell for the children in particular. A selfless member who volunteers to shoulder the joint pack selflessly may at the end find himself reading a story to a sleepy child.

Watch your step, unruly road rollers are around

 I live in the city of  Chennai, India. Do you know what it has become famous for in recent years? The city has nearly become the Detroit of USA, going by the number of  4- wheelers and 2-wheelers  it produces on   daily basis. There are around 13 major  manufacturers of automobiles of different varieties.

Recession  may be   lurking in a corner and inflation may be galloping right before our eyes, but there is no dearth of car and motor bike  buyers.  I wonder where these people get their money from.

It is difficult  to walk on the roads these days.  At any time of day or night, you would find the road space filled with vehicles, mostly two wheelers; most of them threatening  to knock  a pedestrian down.

The vehicle population in the state of Tamil Nadu is 14 million of all types as in August 2011. It may have gone up  by another half a million by now. The 2-wheelers top the list – 11 .5 million and of these 2.6 million are in Chennai city alone.

What is more disturbing is that these vehicles have become giant killers. In the year 2010 alone, the deaths in Tamil Nadu roads were a whopping 65,000.  This is quite close to  the national figure of 150,000.

Why should we get into lime light like this  for wrong reasons?  Is life so cheap in our State?  Over 1.2 million are injured and over 3 million disabled in the whole of India. Our roads are good and one  would be tempted to drive at a cruising speed of 100 kmph on highways.  One often sees youngsters  flying at 60 and 70 in their two wheelers right on the city roads. Now, you know why accidents occur.

The dead are dead and gone.  One may not even remember their names after some  six months. But what about those who have been seriously injured.  A visit to the  government hospitals would reveal how some young lives have been severely dented and put out of action. A lost leg or a hand cannot be retrieved. A head injury puts a man completely out of normal life  for the rest of his life.  He is a living dead, as it were !

You may ask why I am lamenting over these figures.  Supposing the  injured happens to be your own brother or sister or even wife.  Would you forgive the chap who had caused  this damage?

The question is what do we do about the road  accidents? What do you and I and the third person over there do to minimise the casualties?.  We need to put our thinking cap on and find ways and means.  Let’s not sit quiet all because none of our near and dear ones have been affected. Shed tears for the wounded and debilitated and pray to God to give good sense to the vehicle owners.

Of family, love, life and tea drinking legacy

I woke up to a beautiful day, unlike the past couple of days when the sun did not wake up at all and the rains were having a ball. Not really a rain girl, I would rather laze in my warm settee than to enjoy the rhetoric of the rains.

It was early in the morning and the sun was already looking so beautiful. Series of memories visited me and made me unusually nostalgic. I handled my white and gold rim ceramic cup just filled with semi fuming Darjeeling tea with little milk and sugar. I like it with milk, I always have. Over the years, my taste for tea has changed, grown and have substantiated me. I have been a tea drinker ever since my late teens. My grandma, an addict and a beautiful heart, was the first to rise and make her and the family the first cup of tea. She only used to get going after her first cup. I, essentially being her flower child, used to love the little sips that would made me feel like her, more than anything else. Tea got me to its clings, literally, much later. I would love the masala chai loaded with sugar and milk. That was a phase which had its lovely moments. As I grew up, I found tea more enigmatic. The flavors are variant, distinctive and appealing.

Grandma left the legacy of tea drinking to me. In my family, now, it’s only my father and I, who relish the idea of morning and evening teas, teas for different occasions and weathers. We love everything that is good tea and how it is served. I believe in that the flavor changes or enhances with the right kind of serving containers. So, I stress on the right kind of cups for a different kinds of teas. My mother hardly drinks tea but has specializes on the art of making it on my insistence. I am picky when it comes to tea. My sisters and their family are occasional tea drinkers – something I appreciate. But when they are visiting us, I manage to tempt them to some relishing cups of tea. The idea of having it all together is really alluring and great fun. We serve it with lots of cookies, Indian snacks, love and gossips.

Things have changed over the years, we have metamorphosed, father has gone more bald, I have had my first grey hair sneaking out every now and then and grandma is no more. But our love for good tea is one good constant factor that has still gotten us all together to the morning tea table over a beautiful tea drinking ritual.

As a Child

As a child I always loved to go to office like my dad. Life sounded so happy for my father according to me, with no teacher homework etc. ‘Do what you like’ was the life of my dad. The bus ride to school was exciting, but how I wished it was to a picnic and not to school. The drawing class-wow! Awesome periods in which I never missed, my mother, grandmother, aunts & my wonderful toys. Then the number-work class followed by science class bought back home-sickness writing numbers and number names brought tears to my eyes and learning the spellings of animals and plants brought big sobs.
The morning milk was so boring. I wished I could have some cool drinks. The lunch bell brought back smiles. Eating with friends was fun- sharing food with each other. I loved playing hide & seek after lunch. I recollect when one day I was hiding behind the wall of our school building trying hard not to be spotted. The bell rang but I did not hear. I was hiding wondering how I was not being spotted while at the same time feeling happy that I had won. Fifteen minutes passed, I became aware of my loneliness. I slowly came out of my hiding only to find out silence everywhere. I rushed to the class. The social studies teacher had started the monotonous history lecture. She just loved to punish me by asking to write the lesson- British Rule in India 3 times. Then was our computer class. I loved it. Fascinated with the thought of learning without holding pen, pencil, eraser etc, the computer sounded a great wonder for me. The school bell rang; my face glittered to go home. The teacher had filled up the complaint column. My promises to my mother that I would not repeat my mistakes again were another routine to my mom. Sundays were the best. Everyone has a holiday spending some good time with my grandmother, aunts & mom watching my favourite shows on tv, but Sunday night beats the trumpet of Monday morning oh! Oh! No how long.

One moment in time

I lived all my days, for that one moment in time
No past no future, in that instance
Felt the world around me sublime

All seemed so clear to me and yet I was blind
Wanted no past no future in that instance
A knot was getting tied there, never to unwind

In your arms I lay trustingly when you kissed my forehead
Felt no past no future in that instance
For me only for me this is, my every being pleaded

In the life that I live, such moments I want to steal
With no past no future in that instance
Time would just stop and the days would turn surreal

Sigh! We walked our separate ways, now memories drop by as gentle dew
There was no past no future in that instance
So never mind the ending dear, love, with you it did ensue

One Husband Several Wives and One Wife Several Husbands

“History repeats itself” is no vain statement and it surely does if what has been reported  in the newspapers the  other day is true. The repetition  here has  a small twist, that’s all.

Some years back, probably in Nineties, a man claiming to be an NRI married many young women, stayed with them for a day or two, looted their jewellery and vanished out of sight.

His modus operandi was like this.  He would advertise in  the newspapers that he was on a short leave from USA /UK,  and was looking for a working woman kind of  bride.  There was craze in that era to go abroad, especially USA and  settle down there for a long spell. Many young women like nurses, teachers, clerical staffs, secretaries and  even some junior executives  responded. Our hero chose one who had a good income, went for bride seeing along with a middle aged woman, who he claimed as his elder sister; taking a woman with  him, added  credibility to his game.

After some serious interrogation, he approved of the candidate and fixed the marriage date which was just 4  or 5 days away;  he must go  through the wedding ritual fast  before his leave expired. Oh, was the bride happy?  And the parents were thrilled too.  The man demanded no dowry but the bride may be sent with her personal jewellery and clothes. No parents could have asked for more.

The marriage ceremony was kept very simple.  The wedded couple had their first night in a hotel in the bridal attire. The bride couldn’t spend the night wearing her full   jewellery.  She took them out and kept them in the cupboard or dressing table.  During the night our hero collected them and vanished before it was  dawn. You can imagine the plight of the bride.

In another case, he rang up the bride-to-be and asked her to buy an air ticket, both ways, to  New Delhi.  He would be back on the following day, well in time for the wedding.  That was the last the parents heard of him.  He converted the ticket into cash and disappeared.

He succeeded in seven cases  using different duping methods and the eighth turned out  to be his Waterloo.

During a social party one young thing proudly announced that she was getting married to an NRI, who was on a short leave in India and showed his photograph to the hostess. “How is it?  He is marrying me five days from today….”  conveyed the hostess.  Becoming suspicious, the hostess laid a trap for him.  “Where are you living Mister Suresh?” she asked of him on his contact number.  He gave the address of a hotel.  On checking back, there was no one there by that name. On further probe, they discovered that he was a  part time clerk from a nearby city.

The police nabbed him and took him to court on a case of cheating.  He along  with his paramour got 8 years in jail.

And now comes a similar case but this time the villain is a  woman.

One Manimegala from Pollachi,South India, joined a computer centre, run by a differently abled man. Manimegala made him fall in love with her and  after a few weeks she indicated to him obliquely that she was interested in marrying a differently abled man and give him a comfortable home life.  Rathinakumar fell for her sweet talk and proposed to her.

Even before the marriage Manimegala had  tranferred  his 10 cents land in her two brother’s names.

After the marriage in November 2011, she continued to extract money and valuables  from Rathinakumar and left him one fine morning.

Perplexed at the turn of events, Rathinakumar begged her to come back to him. Strangely, the family members of the girl threatened to finish him off.

Following this development, Rathinakumar lodged a  police complaint.  Preliminary investigations revealed that   Manimegala had conned several men in  this manner.  Her first marriage was with one Sathish Kumar from Tirupur some years back.  He was dumped in due course after she had robbed him of valuables and money. It’s not known how many more men she married and threw out  before she set her eyes upon the poor  computer centre owner.

The police are now collecting more information to find out how many husbands she had  lured and deceived.

Seychelles, a Victim of Sea Piracy

Seychelles is no more a paradise for rich holidayers and tourists. It has become  a hunting ground for  pirates, Somalian pirates. Their operational  area is from Seychelles to Mahe, gulf of Aden and Maldives.

The pirates’ target is any ship that passes by in their working area,  be it a merchant ship, a cargo ship or an oil tanker or even a passenger ship. Once they boarded a passenger ship which probably carried a thousand passengers.  Completely outnumbered, the dozen odd pirates were hammered nicely and thrown into the sea. So, they avoid  ocean liners.

What is their aim of  hauling up ships?  Their merchandise or oil?  None of these.  The ransom  money from ship owners for releasing the ship and  crew.  They demand millions of dollars and the owners find no  way other than paying up the amount  and getting the ship back.

The pirates do abduct crew and other passengers  sometime. The purpose is the same – ransom.  A retired couple set sail in their private yacht  one day. They had traveled hardly 60 nautical miles and they were cornered  and taken prisoners along with their yacht. It is not known where these two persons,  60 and  56 are.  Probably they are held hostage for any negotiation in the future.

The interception could place any where up to  Maldive islands.

Don’t the ships have any protection?  Yes, the Indian Navy does come to their rescue.  They did capture some pirates also and in some cases, after destroying their small ships the men were thrown into the sea to make them fend for themselves or die a horrible death.  The UK and American Navies also do help.  But then a distance of some 1500 nautical miles cannot be protected every inch.  The pirates choose their target and according to their timing.

The greatest sufferer is the Seychelles government and its people. Their tourist traffic has dwindled down to almost a trickle. No honey mooner or holidayer would venture into this area.  The island’s income is thus affected.

The other source of income is ‘tuna fishing’; tuna is exported to the European countries.  The  French and Spanish trawlers who do the fishing for the island have slowed down their activity.  So much so, from 2009, the catch has reduced by 30%.

Tuna processing and  canning system  in Seychelles is a highly automated one.  At one end of the conveyor belt, the trawlers unload the catch and at the other you collect the canned tins.  The factory has been producing 450 tons of tuna fish daily which has reduced to around 300 now. Some 3000 Seychellians are employed in the fishing industry. Not only the income of the Seychelles population has decreased  considerably but  also many have become unemployed as well. What will the  people do?

Why are the Somalians  indulging in this immoral practice?  They say, their fishing business from Gulf of Eden has been affected terribly due to poaching by other nations.  Next, the gulf has become a dumping ground for all kinds of wastes including toxic waste.  This has affected the health of the Somalians.  Thousands  suffer from mouth disease and stomach disorder.

Somalia is a very poor country and underdeveloped as well.  And yet people have to live.  What could they do?

In the circumstances, piracy appeared to be a very tempting and  a quick money earner method  and they had  grabbed the  opportunity. The Somalian piracy has the public’s support and not considered immoral at all.

The navies of other nations do capture the pirates and try them out in their own courts.  Recently there was an agreement among the nations that the convicted Somalians must spend their jail sentence in their own country and should be sent to Somalia after trial. Since the Public have given their open approval for the piracy , will this measure reduce piracy by any significant  percentage? Very doubtful.  We don’t know  what the Somalian governments’ stand is in this regard.  Are they for or against piracy?

Possibly thousands and thousands are indulging in this trade.  Suppressing or eliminating this  large scale professionals  is not an easy task through the small help the island gets from neighbouring nations. If  fleets of ships are deployed, it may be possible to eliminate the menace.  But then, isn’t this asking for the Moon?

The next alternative  for the exporters is to send armed escorts in each ship.  This should not prove very expensive at all. Since the pirates come only in small numbers, a  dozen odd  well equipped soldiers on board  could easily overpower the thieves of small groups. This seems to be the final solution at the cheapest cost. And the ship owners must consider this option in the interest of their own business and safety of their goods and crew.

 

 

Matters of the heart-\-break

Are you in love with some person? Deeply in love? How free have you been with him/her physically?  If you have been  only hugging and kissing, this article is meant for you.  If you have gone beyond that or below the waistline, don’t read it.

The modern generation know all about safe sex, the safe period, protected sex, condoms etc. Wonder if they enquire about her safe days from the girl concerned.  Where would be the time for it anyway? The decision itself would be spontaneous and urgent and the darned  act would finish before you  count ten !

The other day I saw on the net a Western pair, aged around 24 years, who  had been having sex regularly like any married couple practising  the technique of  ‘withdrawal’.  It seems to have worked out for them  well for 4 years and they have not decided to get married. I have a horrible feeling  that  they would never get married at all.  In all probability, they may  marry  someone else.  Why? You may ask. They need new pastures, the earlier one having been explored and eaten up. I only  hope the Indian adventurers don’t resort to the  “withdrawal technology.”

One  very  knowledgeable  youngster asked seriously some days back,  “What’s the harm?  It’s only natural, isn’t it? We know how to protect ourselves from STD and undesirable pregnancy etc?”

“Well said, boy,” I complimented him.  “But do you know the consequences? STD and pregnancy  are not the only issues, remember?”

He cocked up his ears to what I had to say.

In India, dear young man, one falls in love so that it leads to the marriage altar.  A maiden dreams of it from week one.  She may not think of casual sex at all. But she may give in, if you insist on it all   because she  loves you a lot and doesn’t want to displease you in any  manner nor lose you on account of a denial.

“OK.  That’s fine,” he remarked interrupting me.

“It’s not fine,  dear fellow.  Firstly, you will feel very guilty about it since you have done something  wrong and against  our culture. Let’s say you care two hoots for the culture. Next, you are likely to  lose all interest in her because you have tasted her pre maturely.”

Some young men may even start hating the sight  of that girl; she would suddenly look ugly in your eyes; and possibly you may even dub her as a lose character who could surrender to anyone asking for sex..  The most important development could be, “There is nothing to look forward to in her thereafter.” And you part ways.

The affected college scholar scratched his chin. “Y…e…s sort of …”  On a closer cross examination he confessed that he had abandoned his No.1 but since he belonged to a group of 4,  he was having an eye on another.

“Have you tasted her too?”

“Not yet, Sir.”

“Do you love No. 2?

“No, not really.  But I did love No.1 very deeply.  Really loved her, Sir.  Dreamt of her as my future wife….”

“What happened then?  You have kicked her out of your heart now , haven’t you?” After several minutes of silence, he accepted  that he had.

This is what will happen if you try out your fun sex. You would lose all  interest in her.  Is it fair on the girl?  Won’t she carry this guilt in her mind assuming she gets married to another person?  A ‘guilty past’ may lead to quarrels, disagreements, arguments and an unhappy end as well.

I have personal knowledge of a few cases. What if the girl gets pregnant? Her future is gone for ever. And the  culprit would, more often than not,  refuse to marry her on some excuse or the other.  The poor girl delivers the baby. I heard several stories of this kind in a Cheshire home where unmarried girls  surrender their unwanted baby. Will such unfortunate females stand the chance of marriage ever again?  Surely not.  Every gent inIndiawants a pure virgin and nothing less.

Despite the pre-marital thing, some stick to their resolve and get married. But then their marriage never lasts. To quote a case: These two were deeply in love for about 18 months and were due to be married shortly. “Why not?  After all we are getting married, aren’t we?”  asked the male partner. The girl reluctantly agreed.  After they went through it, the man had a change of heart; he didn’t want her any longer;  there was nothing to discover in her any more. He avoided her and married someone else.

In another case, [which unfortunately took place in my own family !], though they got married all right after some 2 years of courting, and one abortion,  the marriage didn’t succeed; my sister couldn’t conceive and  the union ended in permanent separation.  Don’t you think but for the pre marital sex and the  badly done abortion, their marriage would have clicked with a couple of children?

All these failures are  due to  ‘one mistake’, one simple mistake committed at an emotional moment when they had lost control over their passion. If only they hadn’t succumbed  to this temptation of  trial sex, they would have been a happy couple with healthy children.

So, keep away from this practice, children.  Remember, “To delay is to increase the pleasure.”  So, hold on until you tie the nuptial knot. You will then enjoy not only your ‘wedding night’ but also have a long lasting and solid  married life.

There is one more thing. The modern day children are very knowledgeable and bold as well.  It’s possible your own daughter would one day ask you how you met her father. “Were you in love with him? For how long? Did you have sex with him before marriage?”  You cannot lie to your own flesh and blood. Wouldn’t you avoid cutting a sorry figure in front of your own daughter.

So keep yourself under control and pure  so that you become a role model to your own children.

The Female to Male Ratio

It is the Creator God who decides on the sex of the baby being formed in a mother’s womb. The parents have no control over it at all. And God maintains a perfect balance between female foetus and male foetus.  It is always on 1 to 1 basis.  He does not  allow any imbalance in their numbers.

It is God’s plan that the earthlings should not  live alone but live as a pair.  In other words, every human being must get married. That’s why He produced Eve and gave her to Adam.  Adam never asked for a companion.  He didn’t even know anything about a woman and what she would look like.  When God presented a beautiful creature before him, he became curious and started comparing his features with Eve’s.  She became his wife straightway in the garden of Eden.

But, we hear that in some  countries the female to male ratio is terribly one sided. For instance in China there are only 858 females for every 1000 males and in India 914: 1000.  Who was responsible for this imbalance? The people. In Indian villages, a female baby is put to death immediately on birth.  Some village panchayats have laid down  such a diktat. Their reason   is:  Only a male child would perpetuate the family’s name and help it multiply. A girl child would migrate to some other family after marriage for good!

The  thinking in China too is similar. So, they  resort to female infanticide.  Since one can verify the sex of an unborn child,  it is easy to destroy a female foetus right in the womb. The problem became more serious from 1980 when China had  decreed the  one child norm. “The only child must be a male child,” the parents say.

And so we see the demographic  mismatch in these two countries.

Arranged marriage seems to be the norm in China just as it is in India.  Love marriage is also in vogue in India but is getting less and less popular. In such a scenario, how do marriages materialise?

In China it is usually  the woman who picks out her husband. Men being  greater  in number, every young man would keep his fingers crossed hoping that some girl would show a selecting finger at him. Women in general are well educated in China  and naturally they would want a man of good qualifications.

A similar situation will come about in India too.  Instead of  ‘bride seeing’  it is going to be  ‘groom seeing’ henceforth. How will a girl choose her husband in the seeing function?  By the looks or qualification or family status or the Man’s financial status?  It’s possible that software engineers or other engineers may cross examine the  young man and harass him with questions like in a job interview.   The  SW engineer knows exactly what she wants and she would not settle for anyone less  than a post graduate engineer  who had secured his degree fromUSA.   For others, the consideration may be financial security and so a Man’s income and earning capacity would matter a lot.

‘Not so good looking’ girls also will stand a very good chance. A Man who has been rejected by several girls may opt for this specimen.  What matters in the circumstances is, a  woman’s physique and a healthy body and  shape   and her looks wouldn’t count much at all.

In such a situation, some men would have to remain single and die as bachelors while all the  young women  would stand married, happily married.  It’s highly  possible that there may be no divorce at all.  That would be an extraordinary India  then indeed!

Go easy on your life, friend

India is in the  lime light for all wrong reasons. We are one of the ‘leading’ corrupt nations. Corruption is painted boldly on the face of all our leaders and other important people. As of now, the only clean persons are the beggars and ordinary  folk on daily wages.

And now WHO reports that by 2015, 60% of all the heart patients of the world  would be  living in India. Of them 40% would belong to the age  group less than 40.  That’s a terrifying news indeed, isn’t it?.

What are the reasons for heart problems in human beings?

We undergo tremendous stress and strain. due to various kinds of  down to earth difficulties, the chief being financial worry. Domestic disharmony perhaps comes next.  Whatever it is, the doctors during a recent seminar conveyed that we need to take life easy and not weep over the predicaments we come  a cross now and then. Humans, especially those living in cities,  go nuts for nothing, according to the medicos. You know tension could kill you or make you walking skeletons !

How lucky the animals are, particularly our pet dogs. Although they too have a heart each, they  don’t suffer from heart diseases. Pet dogs don’t have heart attacks because they have no burden of any kind that would affect their heart. They develop the same diseases as we human beings do except leprosy.  But heart attack, no. They don’t experience stress of any kind.

One method  to get over our tension arising out of worries   is to take to hard  drinks. A few pegs down your throat around7.30 p.m.you become a different man, a care free man.  Nothing would trouble you. then.  The Stress would stand far away and not bother you at all. You may even dance and come home  dancing all the way and face an angry wife.  But by then you  couldn’t care less about anything. Nor are you expected to give an explanation  to your wife as to  why you over drank. And  you  hit the bed straightway without dinner.

Once you get addicted to drinking,  doctors tell you to  stop drinking because drinking is bad for health.  What happens then to this fellow Mr. Stress?  I think we should let Mr. Stress and Mr. Drink  fight it out between themselves and let us know who we  should vote for.

You would think that the villagers are relatively  free from stress and strain. A village life is an easy going life. No, no friend.  They   are possibly  subject to heavier stress than the city population.  You see, they take heavy loan from banks and  if there is a crop failure or recession and what not, they would  suffer heavy loss and would be  unable to pay back the loan.  They then would spend sleepless nights or decide to kill themselves.

Some farmers have vowed never to let their male children  take to agriculture which has driven many farmers to suicide. If nobody takes to agriculture, who is going to produce  food grains for us?  The government needs to take notice of this kind of thinking  and do something about it so that a farmer’s sons continue to stay on in the village instead of migrating to the cities.  Even now, our towns and cities are over crowded due to influx of the villagers. Once again the Government  has to do something to confine the villagers to the village boundary only.   We have digressed too much.  Now back to the heart problem.

While the doctors have advised us to go easy and to take life easy, they don’t tell us how to do it. Do we contain it with some kind of medicine or some other action?

One mantra is to sing a song daily  which  should go like this, “Take it easy brother, take it easy, that’s the best policy, take it easy, I say again, take it easy.”   You know singing is very relaxing and would put you in a happy mood.. Once you sing this song at least every hour, you would not be troubled with any stress  conundrum.  If your  boss ticks you off for singing the ‘Take it easy’ serenade, tell him  most  amiably, “Take it easy, Sir.  Life is not all that heavy and stressful. Take it Easy, Sir. You  won’t have any heart complications then.  Okay Sir?”.

 

 

On tooth brush and tooth paste

 If I recall correctly, tooth  paste and tooth brush came into our life around the year 1941. I was in school  and in a hostel then. The name of the tooth paste was ‘neem’. All of us took these two as a novelty. It became style and fashion as well, I must say. If you didn’t clean your teeth with a tooth brush you  were looked down upon.

How did people clean their teeth early morning earlier than 1940/41?.  Most of them used their index finger along with charcoal powder.  Some people used tree branches.  Such twigs which sprouted with bristles on biting the edge.  It did resemble a tooth brush of sorts.

If  you ask me,  people in that era maintained much healthier teeth than now. One never heard of a person called ‘dentist’. The roadside quacks treated your teeth problem if any.  His advice would be, “Use good charcoal powder and you will never develop tooth problem.”

It would be consolation to you to know that Lord Jesus Christ and His disciples also used their index  finger to clean their teeth. So did Adam and Eve.

What is the advantage of using your finger?  The finger invariably would touch the gum more than the teeth. Your gum would become strong and your  teeth would be held more firmly.

When you use a brush, your gum gets damaged, which cannot be avoided.  Next, you develop gaps between your teeth. The  strong bristles of the tooth brush  create them. That’s the start of your teeth trouble. After  every  meal you have to extract out the small particles jammed between your teeth.  You would use a tooth pick to take them out.  More gaps would be created and the existing ones would become wider.  In  course of time, your teeth would start shaking because their foundation would have  been disturbed.  And you visit a dentist to get the bad tooth removed and the dentist makes money on you.

See what trouble you have brought upon yourself  by accepting tooth brush and  tooth paste as members of your household?

My  advice is, use your right hand index finger along with paste to clean your teeth.  Tooth powder would be a better option.  Please  avoid the tooth brush like plague.

 

I was given this advice by one of the old men from a village .   I didn’t heed to him seriously at all. In fact I ridiculed  him..

 

Some years back, during one of my visits to a dentist for a regular check up, I was told that three of my teeth were on their ‘death voyage’.

“If you feel any kind  of pain,  come over, OK?” he had said. “Then I would extract out those idiots !”

 

Then I remembered the good old wise villager’s  formula.  I fell back upon my index finger. It’s now over  15 years and my three supposedly bad teeth  on their death bed, are still going strong.

 

I wish I had abandoned the tooth brush some forty or fifty years back. In which case  all my teeth would have been in tact today.

 

Now, what are  you waiting for ?  Go and do it.

Do you wish to live for decades and absolutely healthy too?

 When we read in the Holy Bible that Adam, the first human being of the world, lived for 950 years and his children Methuselah for 969 years, Lamech 769 years  and Noah [Who survived the great flood in the huge ark he had built under God’s orders and guidance] for 950 years, you may also feel and ask, “Why can’t I live at least for 100 years?”  Very few touch 100 in modern times.

But then, what is the use of 100 when you have to be helped by someone  to stand up, sit down, lie in bed or walk? That would be a miserable life, wouldn’t it? Your own children might think in their heart, “I wish Pappa died soon.  He has become a burden to us !”  If that is the kind of life one has to lead around 100, I would rather die much earlier say at 75 or 80.

But Adam and others led a beautiful  and healthy life during those centuries without falling seriously ill or with defective legs, hands and back etc. Isn’t it a pity that  the Creator God had limited  our life span to 70 in course of time. So, most of us leave this world around 70 and only a small number survive beyond that age. This is God’s formula.

And yet, many people want to live for long years.  They would love to see their great, great, great grand children. What do you know? It appears possible too.

Our medical researchers have designed such a medicine that would convert an old man into a middle age gentleman. Harvard University,USA,  is the organization behind this research and the project manager is one Professor Ronald De Pinto.

The professor tried  his new drug on a rat which was equivalent to an 80 year old man.  The fellow fathered two litters and  was also looking like a bull  at the end!

So, why can’t this medicine work as effectively on human beings?   How did the University achieve such an astonishing result?

You see, as we age our internal organs become weak and malfunction.  Or possibly, we become old and skinny and bony because our vital  inside parts have become weak.  So, if these parts could be revived and made to function normally like before, one can live healthily at any age, can’t they?

The theory doesn’t talk about prolonging one’s life span but would make you lead a very healthy and dynamic life even at the age of 80 or 90 or 100.  One can also argue that if the crucial parts have received a new  dose of life, one can live for longer years as well, can’t they?  The argument sounds very logical indeed. We have to wait and see the ground results only after we start  consuming this medicine.  Shall we wait for this  magical medicine to come into the market?

See what this magical medicine would do for you.  You may be 90, but you would look like  a 40 year old man physically  and do all things any 40 type  would do including running, playing basket ball,  volley ball, kabadi etc.  Your skin will have the natural shine, your muscles would look fleshy and  bouncy and your face would be very attractive.

 

How to avoid a Divorce

Suguna fell deeply in love with  Mukesh when she had gone to New Delhi on a college project work.. The love  was so overpowering Suguna felt that she could not live without Mukesh  even for a minute.  Immediately after her BA final examination, she forced her parents to marry her off  to Mukesh.

They got divorced exactly eight months later.Why?

Suguna  was a Tamilian from head to toe and from morning till evening  seven days a week. Whereas Mukesh was born and bred in New Delhi and had never moved out of the Capital in all his life.

Suguna found everything new and strange in her New Delhi home.  She couldn’t stand the sight of chappatis, parotas  and dhal  at the dining table nor every  house routine the whole day.

She was a Christian and  Mukesh, a staunch Hindu.

As days passed by, they couldn’t see eye to eye on any issue at all  and found no agreement on many things in their daily life.  Mukesh’s parents expected a different kind of behaviour from their daughter- in-law but Suguna’s thinking and conduct was like any Tamilian maiden’s. She was worshiping a different God, a foreign God for that matter which her in-laws didn’t quite approve of.

The only thing common between the young couple was the language; Suguna spoke both Hindi and English.  The deep love they had developed  for each other had waned out by the day and did not count for anything  after two weeks into the married life.

Suguna found no course of action appropriate  except to part ways through a divorce..  She was back in her Chennai home exactly 8 months after her marriage,  with all her dreams of a happy home fully shattered. She was a broken soul too with complete  aversion to live with a man ever again!

What went wrong with this young couple? A deep analysis is needed to be  a  lesson for those believers in mixed marriage.

National integration,  culture merging, the concept of  one God, one religion etc are all right in theory but don’t work in practice.  Any marriage would call for adjustment between the husband and wife. One has to give in  and accept some changes in the interest of joint living.  But if one has to adjust more than ten percent, such an union is bound to break.  In Suguna’s and Mukesh’s case, 90% adjustment  was necessary which was impossible to achieve.  Indeed they were better off divorced than married !

You should never rush into marriage. Suguna had done precisely that and without understanding  the life style and beliefs  of her future husband and the compatibility factors between them. Like beauty,  the pre marriage  love is also only skin deep. It is not  a propeller shaft to ferry you through the whole voyage. All the other factors take over, after you had tied the nuptial knot. Unless your foundation is strong, no marriage will be happy and durable.

In this couple’s case, the foundation was very flimsy and therefore  crumbled at the slightest shake. What constitute  a strong foundation?

According to my thinking, the ingredients of a strong foundation are: common food habit, similar bringing up culture, the social status of the wife should be equal or lower than that of the husband’s, common religious belief and financial soundness of the husband.. Once these factors match, the super structure will rise up fast and the building will become complete and strong.  Despite these parameters agreeing, adjustment of some kind would be necessary hut if that adjustment is  more than 10%  the marriage  won’t work  out.

I for one do not encourage inter region or inter caste marriage.  Marry in your own social circle and social surroundings.  Your union then will grow and won’t crumble at any degree of  disturbance.  The word ‘Divorce’ won’t be  found in your vocabulary  any longer and in fact you won’t even know its spelling.

Happy birthday my girl!

The hand pulling rickshaw puller

Struggled his feet through the

Hot and burning stone street

The lady sat fat with lot of extra shopping weight

Her right hand never stopped feeding her mouth

She ate as if there would be no tomorrow

And the puller pulled like there would be no tomorrow

His feet all bare and rough

The soles tough, distracting the stones

The sun was merciless

He eyed a bunch of young people

Gorging on the colored drinks

Two children playing with ice cubes

The lady still munching the snacks

The puller rode like a horse now

He can’t waste any time

He has to meet his little girl

Who’s been waiting since forever

He needs 20 rupees more

To buy her a birthday gift

The gift she’s been wanting since last year

The puller got the fat lady down safely to her house

Took  the money, sidelined the rickshaw

He went to an ever old, shabby shoe shop

Shopped for a couple of chappals

Bought his choice and came home

Wearing the sandals in blue straps

His girl gave him a big hug and a tearful kiss

He finally made her day.

 

 

‘Laughing’ is no laughing matter !

You must have seen a caption such as “Laughter the best medicine”, in a few magazines.  Most of the  Monthlies and Weeklies  do run a column for  jokes, humour and so on. It is  very  unlikely that you would  have flipped over that page as unwanted stuff.

So, a joke of any kind is a compelling piece of mini  literature which cannot be ignored by any reader.  But,  does it serve as a medicine of any kind as the wordings go?  I never considered it to be any  type of therapy at all.  No doctor has ever prescribed it to any  one..  But a recent article made me wise on the subject.      

One Dr. Madan Katara hailing from the city of Mumbai,India, felt that laughing was good for healthy  living and it does cure some chronic complaints. He came to this conclusion  after some research. and tried it on himself initially.  Presto, he did feel relieved from some of his chronic problems such as asthma, perpetual coughing etc.

So, he started a club which met at the nearby park every morning.  Soon there were some 50 persons  – all laughing their guts out for about 15 minutes and then they dispersed. Every participant gave a positive feedback.

This happened in the year  1995 and the concept  has spread to a number of countries.  As of now, there are 6000 laughter clubs in 60 countries. What are the  overall benefits?

One feels  better emotionally, physically and would be  cheerful throughout the day without any kind of stress. The blood pressure will remain  normal  and  kept under control too.

Depression and sadness will get banished in you  if you keep yourself happy.   Depression is the root cause for 70-80 per cent of all health problems in every human  being around the world. It is a kind of a killer disease too  and would eat into you without your own  knowledge. Laughing suppresses this ailment.

You would appear a jolly  good fellow the whole day. Your face will show a pleasant glow and sport a delectable smile  as well  in your office or work place. People around you will notice it too.

Did it occur to you that a laughing club needs no building nor any kind of premises;  any out door space would do.  There is no membership fee and no dress regulation either.  You can walk in in any dress including a swimming costume or a nightie.

Even if you are not a member of any  group, you can start your laughing drill wherever you are.  Begin with a 15 minute session every morning. It would be good if you could recharge yourself sometime during the rest of the day. It would be rather embarrassing to break into a paroxysm  of laughter in your work  area nor would you feel quite comfortable to shut yourself inside a  bathroom for a brief laughing session. But once  the laughing prescription  is accepted universally, there could be a five minute  break  now and then known as the ‘laughing break’. The more frequently you laugh the more perfect a health you would maintain.

Shall we  hope that over the next few years the laughing   technology would catch on   and become so common that no one would call you  a nut when you indulge in it !

 

 

 

The long, strong hair of Rapunzel and poor me

My favourite fairy tale has been the beautiful story of Rapunzel. I loved every thing about Rapunzel. I was enthralled by the enchantress who wanted the unborn child to be surrendered to her at birth because the man had scaled down the wall to her garden to collect the rapunzel plant for his wife. I loved how Rapunzel grows up to be the most beautiful child in the world with long golden hair. When Rapunzel reaches her her teens the enchantress shuts her away in a tower in the middle of the woods, with neither stairs nor door. When the witch visits Rapunzel, she stands beneath the tower and calls out: Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair, so that I may climb the golden stair.

What could be more exciting than this! I was mesmerized by the beautiful braided hair – long and strong and everything that perfect hair should be.

Then the prince charming appears. He too climbs up the tall tower with the long hair, where Rapunzel was captivated. The together plan means of escape.  However, the poor sweet girl asks the witch in a moment of forgetfulness why it is easier for her to pull up the prince than her and in anger,the witch cuts short Rapunzel’s braided hair and casts her out into the wilderness to herself. This was horrifying for me. I used to get so upset every time I came to this part of the tale. It was hard for a child who has dreamed of braided hair like that since forever. The next part of the story was more saddening, and I used to weep a lot. When the prince calls that night, the enchantress lets the cut braids down to pull him up. To his horror, he finds himself staring at the witch instead of Rapunzel. The prince was blinded by thorns, how I can’t remember, but that was disheartening to the core.

Who can forget the long beautiful hair tied in beautiful knots. To have long, beautiful, strong hair like Rapunzel. I have dreamed of the same since forever. More than anything else, the prince charming was more fascinating by the way he climbs up the tower with the help of Rapunzel’s strong and lovely hair. Not to forget he was chivalrous and all that it takes to sweep you off your feet.

So did I work onto to have a hair like that? Well, I tried every means on earth. I tried home remedies, I went for extravagant professional helps, I went for five star salon treatment but the secret formula that the enchantress used to caress Rapunzel’s mane seemed utopia. Lastly, I cut my hair short. Wearing it short seemed to be a much better option, and I am smarter than my friends think.