Saturday, September 29, 2007

Angies List

Angies List

As per the official Angies list site More than 500,000 Homeowners in 124 major cities use Angie's List mainly for ratings and reviews on various topics. The Angies list offers Easy Tips to Live Green. A poll conducted in 2007 of Angies list members found that about 94 percent of the members considered the environment and its preservation important to them. About three-fourths of the participants to the poll said they actively participate in curbside recycling. And two-thirds of the participants pay nothing, while just 2 percent say they pay $35 or more per year. Most of the members who participated in the poll said it would be great to purchase a hybrid car or install solar panels over vehicles that use fossil fuels and electricity produced from conventional methods, but it should be admitted that we can't make big changes like that all by ourselves but be could certainly do our part and as more and more people join the efforts it be certainly make a difference. The Angie’s list gives some simple ways to live green for example if your community offers curbside recycling, take advantage of it. If not, find the nearest drop-off location.

Here are the 13 unique eco-friendly tips that feature on the Angies list to help make a difference to your environment.

1. Add blown-in cellulose insulation to your attic to improve your home's heating and cooling. It's made from recycled, formaldehyde-free newsprint.

2. Use a rain barrel to collect water from your roof to water your garden.

3. Buy water-based paints with low volatile organic compound levels (VOC). Basically, the less glossy the paint, the fewer VOC's it contains.

4. Buy minimally packaged goods. Less packaging can reduce your garbage.

5. Check your mulch level. If it's low (fewer than 2 inches) calculate the area you want to cover in square feet and then in depth. Multiply the two numbers, then divide that number by 324. This is the number of cubic yards you'll need to buy.

6. Install an efficient showerhead. This is an excellent way to save money on your water bill.

7. Cut energy consumed by your appliances by buying Energy Star ones ( They meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the EPA and U.S. Department of Energy.

8. Use cloth napkins/towels instead of napkins/paper towels.

9. Store food in re-usable containers, instead of plastic wrap or aluminum foil.

10. Reuse plastic bags or buy canvas bags at the grocery store.

11. Join a toy library and give old toys to other families.

12. Don't use electrical appliances for things you can easily do by hand such as opening cans, hanging clothes to dry, etc.

13. Print or copy on both sides of the paper

Myanmar – Burma



Myanmar image courtsey:

A sorry figure!

Myanmar was once a part of the Indian Union until it got separated by the ruling British (1937). With an area of 678500 sq miles and a population of 43 million Myanmar is the biggest nation in South-East Asia. It is bordered by China, Laos, Thailand, Bangladesh, India, the Andaman-Sea (at the south) and Bay of Bengal (at south-west). Though Myanmar got its ‘independence’ in 4th January 1948 from the British, the sun of true independence is yet to shine upon this unfortunate piece of land. As a nation that is still trying to wriggle out from the vice-grip of the military junta since 1962 Myanmar cuts a sorry figure in 21st century when all other nations worth its name have embraced democracy. The present leader of the junta is General Than Shwe who is engaged in a bitter struggle against the Buddhist Monks who are out to see him thrown out.

Virulent and strong!


Myanmar burma image courtsey:

It was in 1989 the word ‘Myanmar’ was coined by the Military (Myan = virulent and ma = powerful) to replace the old name Burma (along with the change of the nation’s name; names of several places were changed; as capital Rangoon was renamed as Yangon), this name change by the junta is still not accepted by many nations like US and UK. Since 6th November, 2005 the capital of Burma has been shifted to Pynmana about 320 KM away from Yangon and it is said that the change of capital has only partially affected so far, as official matters are held secret it is hearsay alone can be depended in case of Burmese affairs.


Burma is predominantly an agricultural country Ayeyerwady and Thanlwin are the main rivers which have made this land utmost fertile. Ayeyerwady the longest river in Burma (2170 KM in length which falls in to the Andaman Sea) and its water is the life source of Ayeyerwady delta where most of the people live. Agriculture contributes about 54% of the Burmese economy; main outputs are rice, timber, sugarcane, pulses etc. Burmese teak wood is a very much sought after commodity and is widely exported to different parts of the world.

A rich history.

myanmar map

Myanmar burma map courtsey:

There are evidences that Burma had human inhabitation since 11,000 years back, but historical evidences exist only from 300 BC with the ‘Mon’ culture which got interacted with Buddhism came from India during that period. Yet another tribe which got settled in Burma was ‘Pyu’ which established Kingdoms like Binnaka, Mongamo, Shreeksetra, Tanomyo etc these kingdoms were peace-loving and belonged to the Theravada Buddha trait. These kingdoms were composed of numerous city settlements and were loose-knit as a nation. The Konbong Dynasty under Aloungpa (1551 – 81) who made Rangoon its capital made the empire strong and annexed parts from neighboring countries like Thailand India and China.

A Burmese Napoleon.

King Bagidav (1819-24) of the Konbong dynasty raised the might of Burma to new highs; his aggressive strategies resulted in annexing many parts from neighboring nations. Alas his attack on the British India forces turned out to be his Waterloo. The Burmese army led by its fearsome chief Maha Bandhula was confronted by the British (the first Burmese war) in which Britain had to seek the help of Thailand to fight Burma (1824 -26), the British won the war and annexed several areas as a result (Manipur, Arakan etc). The British annexed Pegu in the Second Burmese war (1852) which lasted about three months. The whole Burma came under the British with the third Anglo Burmese war (1885). In 1886 Britain made Burma a part of British India and facilitated trade of goods (Burma was famous for its good quality rice) from Burma to distant parts of the globe.

Seeds of Independence.

The history behind the Independence of Myanmar is dotted with many events in which many nations like India, China, Japan as well as Britain had some roles. Under the British rule Burmese youth had occasions to gain modern education in Britain and they returned with the expectation of seeing their own land independent and it was these educated youth who led the independence movements (quite akin to the events in India as well as most of the former British colonies.

India’s role!

The Positions occupied by Indians in Burma had been provocative to nationalists. Indians had upper hand as members of British colony which they used for the exploitation of innocent Burmese inviting wrath from the local population. Indians alone where admitted in the British- Burma army moreover Indian money lenders exploited poor Burmese peasants. These all factors could be liberally utilized by the champions of freedom movement thus attracting sympathy of local people and turning them against the British.

Japan and China.

The advent of Japan as a world power gave the Burmese nationalists a shot in their arm and they rose as a force to reckon with Japanese help. The British in turn reacted with separating Burma from Indian Union (in 1937) and making it a colony with its own constitution, its first Prime Minister was Ba Maw, Mr. U Saw who preceded him was later arrested for reason of colluding with the Japanese. By this time Aung San skipped to China to evade arrest and the Chinese helped him in getting Japanese help for fighting the British.

Aung San and his ‘rule’.

Japan has always meddled with the Burmese affairs; this time Japan succeeded in capturing Burma (during the Second World War) they gave training to Aung San and 29 of his followers (leaders of Doy Boamer movement) were given training and this movement declared the complete independence of Burma. They organized an army by name ‘Burma Independence Army’ (constituted mainly of criminals and anti-socials and later it was disbanded by Japanese –their actual boss). This army (with the undercover help of the Japanese) could defeat the British forces and establish a government under Ba Maw.

Dream turned nightmare!

Later by its defeat in the Second World War, Japan was driven away from Burma and British gained control, in an election that followed ‘Anti-fascist People’s Freedom League’ came to power, it turned out to be nightmare when several ministers of the council (including Aung San) were assassinated by a plot hatched by none other than the Prime Minister U Saw. This was only a beginning and Burma (Myanmar) has become a nation of rebellions as people combined in to several groups and engaged in attacking each other. Marxists of several hues, Muslims of Arkanas area, Military, all participated in the internecine guerilla as well as open warfares. Prime Minster U Nu had to invite Gen. Ne Vin to the chair, who could bring temporary peace and that too broke down after the election.

Under the military boots.

myanmar crisis

Burma is being ruled by the military junta in the name ‘State Peace and Development Council’ under its chairman Than Shwe; who is the man to post the Prime Minister and the council, all the ministers are military officers hand picked by Than Shwe! There is no Judiciary in Burma and disputes are settled arbitrarily by the military. Population of Burma also is a guess as there is no scientific censes taken place there and it lags much behind in human development index, health care is nominal and child mortality rate is exorbitantly high. There exist many repressions against people of ethnic Indian and Chinese origins by the military rule against which no one dares to complain. Most of the nations have imposed financial sanctions against Burma against all these human rights violations.

Different ethnic groups.

There are more than 135 ethnic groups in Burma but only 8 groups have been approved by the government. The culture of Myanmar is a mixture of different civilizations yet the Bemer civilization is the dominant one which is much influenced by of Indian, Chinese and Thai. Their food, music, language, dress all are telling examples of Bemer culture. But the Burmese script was formed from Mon scripts – the Mon script was formed from the ancient Dravidian scripts.

Burmese Socialism!

Burma has essentially an agriculture based economy even though it is rich in mineral resources like oil, tin, zinc, copper, coal etc. The military has imposed a ‘Burmese Socialism’ policy which has no clear cut financial strategies and economy is run by arbitrary policies which are immersed in corruption and lethargy. The United Nations have grouped Burma in a ‘most undeveloped nation’ category due its backwardness. But its backwardness has arisen as a blessing in disguise as its rich forests (49% of Burma is covered by forests) are remaining un-encroached due lack of development, but of late Burma has started lumbering as a big business to find money and it has liberalized economy to that extent so that lumbering is permitted!

Aung San Suu Kyi.

Aung San Suu Kyi (Nobel laureate) daughter of Aung San has risen to the status of an icon in the recent history of Burma. When Burma is in utter darkness the world looks at her as a candle flame amidst the gloom that encircles Burma at present. She bears the torch from the front when her brainchild National League for Democracy is in the field to gain independence that has been long lost to this part of land. The military was compelled to conduct an election in 1990 in which the ‘National League’ under Suu Kyi gained clear majority; yet the military junta refused to hand over power to the elected representatives. At present she is under house arrest and many of her followers languish in Burmese prisons.

Kerala articles wish Suu Kyi’s mission all success and Burmese people their long cherished birthright that is freedom from tyrranny.

Bengali Classic Literature and Bollywood Films

Influence of Bengali Classic Literature in Bollywood films

Bengal in the eighteenth and nineteenth century had produced intellectuals of different dimensions in different fields including academics, politics, music, literature, social science, etc. Social reformers like Raja Ram Mohan Roy, Vidhyasagar brought social awakening through the prohibition of evil practices like Sati and bringing modern legislations with the help of the British Government in the colonial era like Widow Remarriage Act. In the field of religion Swami Vivekananda redefined Hinduism in his Chicago Conference in USA and provided the deliberations of Sri Ramakrisha in condemning materialist philosophy. Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose was one of the most dynamic personalities of the freedom struggle movement of India.

Literature is a field where the immortal works of the Bengali Legendary thinkers have influenced the silver screen the most which even has significance after around 50 years of creation of the classic works. Bankim Chandra Chatterji was given the title of Sahitya Samrat (the Monarch of literature) who nurtured Bengali language from its Sanskrit-oriented origin in almost the same manner in which mythologically Lord Mahadeva brought river Ganges from his knotted hair (jata) and created classic novels like Kapalkundala, Anandamath, Devichowdhurani, etc. His song Vandemataram had instilled patriotism and respect for the motherland and was the guiding mantra in India’s freedom movement which became the national song of the country after India got independence. His novel “Anandamath” was picturised as Bollywood film in 1950 with Pradeep Kumar, Bharat Bhushan, Prithviraj Kapoor playing significant roles.

Bimal Mitra’s epic literature Saheb Bibi Gulam, directed by Karthik Chatterji became a historically eminent work depicting the Zamindari existing in Kolkata during Colonial rule. Chabi Biswas was the second brother, showed the aristocracy, grantieur with which the feudal lords ruled the state. Uttamkumar was the observer of the events as Bhutnath.[1] Guru Dutt played the same role in the hindi film Saheb Bibi Aur Ghulam, 1962, where Meena Kumari played the chotibahu in her own style.

Rabindranath Tagore, the winner of Nobel Prize in literature for Gitanjali, in 1913 had galvanised the firmament of creativity with short stories, poetry, prose, plays, songs and had influenced both Bengali and Hindi films with his revolutionary thinking. His story Kabuliwala was directed by Tapan Sinha in 1957, with Chabi Biswas, the greatest actor of Bengali Silver Screen giving immortal performance of an Afghan father who left his country, came to Kolkata to sell his produce of mewa, pesta and loving a small Bengali girl “mini” who brought him memories of his own daughter back in the country. [2] Tapan Sinha’s films Khudito Pashan, Atithi, 1965, Satyajit Ray’s cineclassic, Teen Kanya, 1961, Gharebaire, 1984, are based on the immortal prices of work of Tagore.

Bimal Roy, the winner of a number of Filmfare awards for best direction in bollywood films made Kabuliwala with Balraj Sahani in 1961. Although the film could not create the same impact as the Bengali film Kabuliwala, yet the classic literature was well appreciated by the Indian masses. Previously Salil Chowdhury’s Do Beegha Zameen, in 1953 had kept its mark as a Bollywood film having strong storybase and powerful direction.

Sarat Chandra Chatterji, titled Katha Sahitwik, influenced Bollywood films the most as his language was understandable to the people of the grass root level and his observation on social, economic issues of rural Bengal had tremendous impact on the readers and filmlovers. His story Devdas picturised by Bimal Roy stormed the silver screen in 1955, providing Dilip Kumar the title of Tragedy king and the image which did not fade with changing times. The remake of Devdas by Sanjay Leela Bansali shows the fact the story is immortal and has not lost its significance even today, more than 70 years after its creation. Similarly Sarat Chandra Chatterji’s Parineeta was picturised by Bimal Roy in 1953 with Meena Kumari in the lead role. The same film had been remade by Pradeep Sarkar in recent times and had been well appreciated by the Indian masses showing the strength of the story and the depth of thought of the author.

Bimal Roy picturised Biraj Bahu in 1954, another story of Sarat Chandra Chatterji, showing the experiences of rural Bengal. Sarat Chandra Chatterji’s classic story Niskriti, based on the problems of joint family system was picturised in Bengali film and in the hindi film Apne Paraye, 1980, the pain of poverty was well depicted through strong performance of Shabana Azmi and Amol Palekar with Utpal Dutta’s compassionate andaz as elder brother. Sarat Chandra Chatterji could think ahead of his time, because joint families are getting eroded these days due to lack of adjustment and giving birth to nuclear families. Besides the biographies of Sarat Chandra Chatterji were picturised in Bengali cinema in Rajlakhi Srikanto,1958, Kamallata, 1969, where Uttamkumar represented Sarat Chandra himself and Abhaya Srikanto, 1965 where Basonto Chowdhury represented Sarat Chandra. In all these stories, the social stigmas, religious barriers, poverty existing in the rural countryside and condition of women was depicted with such a pictographic dimension that people find themselves and associate themselves in one character or the other.

Noted author Jorasondho had provided immortal stories based on his experiences as Jailor in a Bengal prison. Tapan Sinha mesmerised the Bengali audience with his powerful adaptation of the novel Louhakapat in 1958. Chabi Biswas’s performance was well acclaimed throughout Bengal and Nirmal Kumar playing the role of the observer was well appreciated. Bimal Roy made his epic film Bandini on the story of Jorasandho in 1963. The tragic background of individual prisoners made people think whether our justice system punishes the crime or the offender. Other landmark stories include hinger kachuri, written by Bibhutibhushan Mukherjee, which was picturised as Nishipadda, 1970, where Uttamkumar gave a lifetime performance and also translated into hindi version in Shakti Shamant’s Amar prem, 1972. The list can go on. As Bengalis are characterised with their depth of thinking, analysing and feeling human emotions, Bengali literature still is an invaluable asset, even today. Still realistic films can be made from the classic literature of different ages by thoughtful directors. Efforts should be made to translate the Bengali classic literature into different regional languages, so that more section of the society can cherish them for generations.

***** *** ** *

[1] My father Chitta Ranjan Chatterji, Ex-chief Public Prosecutor, Bankshall Court, had interviewed Dilip Roy, eminent actor of Bengali films who was his witness, in a case instituted in Bankshall Court, who said there was no second actor in India who could depict the role of Zamindar in the way Chabi Biswas had done in Saheb bibi Golam, Jalsaghar, Dui Purush, Antarikha, etc. He also said when Raj Kapoor tested Chabi Biswas in the role of a drunkard in the film Ekdin Ratre, 1955, his performance in the song “Ei duniyay bhai sabi hoy” sung by Manna Dey, he came down the trolley and saluted Chabi Biswas saying he had not seen an actor in Indian screen like Chabi Biswas. In the hindi version Jagte Raho, 1956, the same character was played by Motilal, but he could not match the level of excellence of Chabi Biswas.

[2] Kabuliwala received President’s Gold Medal for best film in 1957. Renowned Director Satyajit Ray in his TV interview on DD Bangla had said Chabi Biswas was the greatest actor ever to grace the silver screen and giving him direction was his greatest challenge in the award winning films Jalsaghar, 1958, Devi, 1960, Kanchenjungha, 1962. Chabi Biswas’s performance in the film Manik, 1956, the adaptation of Oliver Twist written by Charles Dickens, in a role of a handicapped grandfather could have brought him Oscar had the film being placed for the nomination.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Shilpa Shetty

Shilpa Shetty arrested at Mumbai Airport over her Kiss with Richard Gere

Shilpa Shetty arrested over Richard Gere kissShilpa Shetty image courtsey:

There's been a buzz on the internet relating to this incident that occured at the Chatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai today (Wednesday, September 26). Shilpa Shetty was on her way to Germany for her West End musical 'Miss Bollywood', premiering in Berlin this weekend. There's been a court order preventing her from travelling abroad as she was wanted in a obscenity case over her infamous clinch with Richard Gere. It is to be noted that the news was a hoax and there's been no such thing as an arrest the authorities merely verified Shilpa Shetty's clearence papers.

Shilpa Shetty arrested over Richard Gere kissShilpa Shetty Richard Gere kiss

Hollywood star Gere, 58, caused an outcry when he grabbed Shetty, 32, swept her backwards, and kissed her several times on the cheek at an Aids-awareness event earlier this year.Gere swooped down on Shetty after shouting in Hindi to thousands of truckers "No condom, no sex".Shilpa Shetty however went on to defend the actor, saying "so much has been blown out of proportion", and Richard Gere promptly apologised for causing offence.The event caused an outcry from the hardcore conservationists, they even burned both Shilpa Shetty s and Richard Ghere s posters claiming that the pair violated the country's anti-obscenity laws.

Richard Gere kissing Shilpa Shetty

Video Shilpa Shetty Richard Gere Kiss

This caused a court in Alwar district of Rajasthan to issued a 'look out notice' for Shilpa Shetty at the various international airports through the Police. The notice clearly stated that the actress shouldn't be allowed to leave the country untill the Richard Gere-Shilpa Shetty case was over.

But later the Supreme Court of India had ruled against this when Shilpa Shetty appealed and the actress was given permission to travel abroad. The immigration officials at the mumbai airport were however not aware of this update.

But unlike what has been told in various websites the truth is that she was only held for a few minutes to clarify the issue and to verify the court order. there's been sites claiming that Shilpa Shetty felt harassed, humiliated and harrowed. but we feel the official was just doing his job its his duty to clarify things. Shilpa Shetty s spokesperson Dale Bhagwagar is said to have asked " Is she expected to carry a copy of the Supreme Court order all her life?" well the answer is no she's not expected to carry it all her life but she will have to untill the case is setteled or till the court authorities care to inform the immigration personnel about the supreme court verdict. this incident being portrayed as an assault by india's culture police could only be looked upon as just a routine affair on the side of the airport authorities. to use Shilpa Shetty s words "so much has been blown out of proportion".

Thursday, September 27, 2007

September 27 2007 World Tourism Day

World Tourism Day September 27 2007

sept 27

September 27 is celebrated all over the world as World Tourism Day to display awareness that tourism is vital to the international community and to show how it affects the social, cultural, political and economic values worldwide. This practice started in 1980. This date was chosen to coincide with an important milestone in world tourism: the anniversary of the adoption of the WTO Statutes on 27 September 1970 at the Third Session of the UNWTO General Assembly in Torremolinos, Spain, in September of 1979..

September 27 is all the more appealing as World Tourism Day in that it comes at the end of the high season in the northern hemisphere and the beginning of the season in the southern hemisphere, A point of time when tourism is in everyone’s mind and hundreds of thousands of people make their travel plans thus creating an electric atmosphere in the entire tourism industry. The industry responds by hiked expenditure in advertisements and thus filling all sorts of media that appeal to the traveler from blogs to televisions.

At its Twelfth Session in Istanbul, Turkey, in October of 1997, the UNWTO General Assembly decided to designate a host country each year as the Organization's partner for celebrating World Tourism Day.

At its Fifteenth Session in Beijing, China, in October of 2003, the Assembly decided the following geographic order to be followed for the World Tourism Day celebrations: 2006 in Europe; 2007 in South Asia; 2008 in the Americas, and 2009 in Africa.

WTO's Executive Council introduced another interesting aspect of World Tourism Day celebrations. It is that the event is to be commemorated on 27 September each year by appropriate events on themes selected by the General Assembly.

WTO invites all interested parties to take part on 27 September each year in the special celebrations taking place in their respective country or holiday destination. And there will be a message issued every year by the WTO general secretary.

Themes of World Tourism Day over the years:

* 1980: Tourism's contribution to the preservation of cultural heritage and to peace and mutual understanding
* 1981: Tourism and the quality of life
* 1982: Pride in travel: good guests and good hosts
* 1983: Travel and holidays are a right but also a responsibility for all
* 1984: Tourism for international understanding, peace and cooperation
* 1985: Youth Tourism: cultural and historical heritage for peace and friendship
* 1986: Tourism: a vital force for world peace
* 1987: Tourism for development
* 1988: Tourism: education for all
* 1989: The free movement of tourists creates one world
* 1990: Tourism: an unrecognized industry, a service to be released ("The Hague Declaration on Tourism")
* 1991: Communication, information and education: powerlines of tourism development
* 1992: Tourism: a factor of growing social and economic solidarity and of encounter between people
* 1993: Tourism development and environmental protection: towards a lasting harmony
* 1994: Quality staff, quality tourism
* 1995: WTO: serving world tourism for twenty years
* 1996: Tourism: a factor of tolerance and peace
* 1997: Tourism: a leading activity of the twenty-first century for job creation and environmental protection
* 1998: Public-private sector partnership: the key to tourism development and promotion
* 1999: Tourism: preserving world heritage for the new millennium (Host: Chile)
* 2000: Technology and nature: two challenges for tourism at the dawn of the twenty-first century (Host: Germany)
* 2001: Tourism: a toll for peace and dialogue among civilizations (Host: Iran)
* 2002: Ecotourism, the key to sustainable development (Host: Costa Rica)
* 2003: Tourism: a driving force for poverty alleviation, job creation and social harmony (Host: Algeria)
* 2004: Sport and tourism: two living forces for mutual understanding, culture and the development of societies (Host: Malaysia)
* 2005: Travel and transport: from the imaginary of Jules Verne to the reality of the 21st century (Host: Qatar)
* 2006: Tourism Enriches (Host: Portugal)
* 2007: Tourism opens doors for women (Host: Sri Lanka)

World Tourism Day September 27 2007

Women is the center of focus of the World Tourism Day in septer 27 2007. The day is being marked as an occasion to celebrate women’s achievements in the field of tourism and for Promoting Gender Equality and Women Empowerment.

The theme is designed to address the important role tourism can play in creating opportunities for employment that will help eliminate poverty in developing countries around the world.

WTO’s goal is to build on knowledge sharing and capacity building to ensure the tourism sector promotes gender equality and women empowerment through to 2015.

For more information, you may visit the World Tourism Organization's site at

UNWTO Together with the Sustainable Tourism Research Centre in Australia, is launching new website on September 27. the focus of the site will be on the role of gender in tourism and how to enhance it, addressing women as agents of change in and for sustainable tourism.

Food Habits and Physical Fitness

Physical Fitness and food habits.

Food Habits and Physical Fitness

Fitness image courtsey:

A duty to the Almighty

Health is said to be wealth; in that sense it is the most precious wealth far more valuable than a expensive mansion or a piece of prime land. Health is also described as a condition without any disease (in Sanskrit ‘arogya’ (aa = no + roga = disease) is the word for health). Lack of a visible disease is not just enough; a person should be as fit as a fiddle and with a little effort nothing prevents him to be so. Human body is one of the most beautiful creations of god (The Bible states that god created man after giving life to all other beings). As his final work the Almighty would have utilized all his resources and previous experience for making human body. Therefore by all means it is the prime duty of everyman to retain its original charm.

Pull off your shirt with pride!

Food Habits and Physical Fitness

Arnold Image courtsey:

Having an attractive face is good but remember, shape and physical fitness are the core of real beauty. When fitness is a combination of strength, flexibility and proper weight it is the proper shape - devoid of fat - that adds glamour. Obesity makes exercise not just difficult but even routine works a painful task. Kneeling, bending, turning etc are all part of the daily activities; one should be able to perform all these movements with grace. A slow and painful move made by a person however handsome he is robs all the benefits of his looks. Pulling off one’s shirt before some one may be a painful case if the body is out of shape!

Pinch yourself!

Unwanted fat deposits here and there spoil the whole charm of the body. Obesity not only steals the beauty from ones body but it is associated with a number of diseases like heart problems, atherosclerosis and some forms of cancer. There are many tests to assess the one’s real shape. There is a simple test; pinch with thumb and forefinger on your waist and upper arm taking as much flesh as possible if more than two centimeters of flesh you are in that obese group and fit for diet tabs.

You are what you eat!

It is said that ‘you are what you eat’ hence avoid any food that is not suited to the body as the food has to be assimilated and to become a part of your body. Leave half stomach for food a quarter for water and the other quarter for air as the dictum goes. After degrading one’s body in to a huge fatty tomb for all dead animals and birds, there is very little chance for a reversal. There is no escape as far as the ‘food culture’ remains as stable as a rock. The tragedy is that third world people with their new found fortunes imitate the fast food style to which their body is never accustomed and in this case the damage is more instant and severe.

Food for thought.

The tests given below can help one person to assess himself where stands on eating habits; and a little effort is enough to gain a pass-mark as a ‘good eater’. Before going to bed; just sit down and spent five minutes to note down what were the foods you took and place from where so that corrections can be made next day, this is a self help therapy. It can be easily seen that most of the refreshments you had were avoidable and was just for company. Your body never wished for it; in other words you were forcing something in to your own body for other purpose. Meetings and joining together can be compressed in to calorie free drinks.

Eating away problems?

Food Habits and Physical FitnessPhysical Fitness Cartoon courtsey:

Every human being has a problem area in his life, in most cases it is left unnoticed and unanalyzed. Many people find a tasty food as a way to escape from haunting problems. As long as the taste that lingers there may be some relief, but problem does not end only body grow fatter. Instead of trying to eat away the problems, analyze it a properly understood problem immediately becomes a partly solved one.

The first taste of apple.

It seems that taste was created by god for the misfortune of humanity. Otherwise fried foods would not have been so tastier than the boiled ones or the sweetness of sugar would not have been such a weakness for human beings, and salt would not have ruled the roost in the realm of taste! Perhaps the apple Eve offered to Adam might be the reason for taste becoming such a cursed temptation.

Save your health as well as wealth.

There is an easy way to save the health of your family along with its wealth (not in a sense that health is wealth) but real cash avoid the following items from your shopping list and think how kitchen can be managed without these items. They are Butter, cooking oil, sausages, oil-canned fish, eggs, cakes, cookies, cream-cheese, chocolates, Meat with fat rolls or preserved meats, eggs, fried foods, nuts, chips and substitute them with fresh fruits (apples, mangoes, pear, cherry etc) , potatoes (cooked with less gravy), cereals (rice, corn, wheat, barley or anything in all forms like bread steamed items etc), vegetables (raw or cooked), etc

Can move mountains!

How to suddenly change eating habits which have been practiced since childhood is the most popular query as well as the vegetables lack taste and doesn’t appeal to children who resent seeing carrots and cabbages. The only solution is human determination before which even mountains cave in. There are a lot of books which give recipes of good vegetable dishes costing a few bucks.

A simple way out.

Food Habits and Physical Fitness

Depending vegetables for sustenance has ethical aspects too as growing, feeding, transporting and slaughtering all animals and birds are done under blatantly commercial ways which are not all fair. For an ordinary person who is not acquainted with all these cruel practices has a simple way to end these crimes, changing his food habit, why shy a trial and be veggie hereafter.

Monday, September 24, 2007

John Force Car Crash in NHRA Video

John Force the Drag Racing Champion Breaks Both Legs, Injures Arm In Texas Funny Car Crash

John force crash videoJohn Force

John Force, one of the most celebrated NHRA drag racer who has 122 career victories to his name and has won the Funny Car Championship 14 times was seriously injured in a crash at the O'Reilly Auto Parts Fall Nationals in Ennis, Texas involving John’s Castrol GTX High-Mileage Ford Mustang, and Kenny Bernstein, bottom, and his Monster Energy/Lucas Oil Dodge Charger on Sunday, September 23, 2007.

John Force and Kenny Bernstein racing side by side at NHRAJohn Force and Kenny Bernstein racing side by side at NHRA

John and Kenny were racing side-by-side just before the accident but as he crossed the finish line against Kenny Bernstein. Bernstein's Funny Car drifted into Force's lane clipping the final timing cone, which subsequently punctured Force's tyre forcing him into Bernstein's car before making contact with the retaining wall. Luckily Bernstein did not suffer any injuries in the accident.

John Force suffered a compound fracture to his left ankle, a broken left wrist, and a severe abrasion to his right knee. Also, Force suffered slight fractures to a number of fingers on his right hand. John was immediately airlifted to Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, Texas. John was conscious while being transferred to the hospital and his injuries are not considered to be life threatening. Daughter Ashley Force, also a Funny Car driver, pulled out of the semifinals. Force's wife, Laurie; Ashley; and son-in-law Robert Hight who also is a Funny Car driver were with him at the hospital.

Team spokesman Dave Densmore reported Force's injuries to the media. will provide more information on this breaking story as it becomes available.

John Force Crash Video

Stunning Video Of John Force Funny Car Crash In O'Reilly Auto Parts Fall Nationals in Ennis, Texas.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Sudhin Dasgupta

Sudhin Dasgupta – A creative genius of Golden age of Bengali Modern songs

In the 50s, 60s and 70s, during the Golden age of Bengali Modern songs, it was very difficult to create a distinct identity in terms of compositions as it was a transition period between use of classical music with westernised effects and incorporation of folk and other rural tunes in the urbanised music base. On one hand the classical legacy created by Legends like Viswadev Chatterji, Ghyanendra Prosad Goswami, Tarapodo Chakraborty were carried forward by Manobendra Mukherjee, Manna Dey, Dhanonjoy Bhattacharya, Satinath Mukherjee, Akhil Bandhu Ghosh and others. Although the noted singers did use pure classical only in certain songs but the classical touch was evident in all their performances. On the other hand the folk singers like SD Burman, Nirmalendu Choudhury inspired Shyamal Mitra and others to maintain the colour, flora, fauna of Bengal’s romantic landscape 1.

In the golden age, music composers and lyricists in Bengal had reached the zenith of creative compositions. Noted lyricists included Gouriprasanna Mojumdar, Shaymal Gupta, Pronob Roy, Sailen Roy and others. Music composers included Robin Chatterji, Pabitra Chatterji, Anol Chatterji, Anupam Ghatak, Anil Bagchi, Gyanprokash Ghosh, Salil Chowdhury, Nochiketa Ghosh and others. In the same age Sudhin Dasgupta, came up with his westernised compositions and contributed to Bengali modern songs, both with his lyrics and memorable music composition.

He had showed his skills in playing the Piano and with the expertise in a number of musical instruments, his compositions had an identity of his own in an age when every music composer galvanised the horizon of Bengali Modern song with their unique style 2.

Notable compositions of Sudhin Dasgupta include “Moyurkonthi rater nile” for Manobendra Mukherjee, “Ei Jhirjhirjhir batashe” for Dhanonjoy Bhattacharya, “Akash eto meghla” for Satinath Mukherjee, “keno tumi phire ele” for Shyamal Mitra, etc. The big challenge of Sudhin Dasgupta was to face Robin Chatterji, who was dominating the Bengali film music, and modern song with his versatile creations. Robin Chatterji had introduced Portugese folk song in the film Deeper naam tiya rong, “o amar sat rajari dhon” and “phiriti bosakor kure gi dise” sung by Shyamal Mitra and Bhaisnav angik bhajan “O mon kokhon shuru kokhon je shesh ke jane”in Uttamkumar’s film Kamallata, 1969. Besides he composed prayer song to kirtan to classical song in Lalubhulu, 1958, for Manobendra Mukherjee.

Sudhin Dasgupta changed the horizon of Bengali film song by asking Manna Dey to sing for Uttamkumar whose major songs were previously sung by Hemanta Mukherjee whose voice suited him the most. Sudhin Dasgupta went to Bombay where Manna Dey and Lata Mangeshkar were busy in the recording of songs of film Pakizaa with Gulam Mohammad and Naushad. When Sudhin Dasgupta recorded the song for Uttamkumar’s film Shonkhobela, 1966, titled “Dekechi ke age ke diyeche sara” as a duet song for Manna Dey and Lata Mangeshkar, Naushad said the words could not be understood as it was composed in Bengali, for the tune was excellent 3.

The film Shonkhobela was a superhit film and Sudhin Dasgupta’s composition for Manna Dey “Ami agantuk” and for Lata Mangeshkar “Aj mon cheche ami hariye jabo” was well acclaimed by music lovers across the nation. Sudhin Dasgupta shaped the career of Legendary singer Manna Dey who was busy in Bombay singing different types of songs under the patronage of Shankar Jaikishan, Roshan, Salil Chowdhury and others. After Shonkobela, Manna Dey formed an immortal combination in playback singing with Uttamkumar, providing sensational performance in films like Antony firingi, 1967, Nishipadda,1970, Stri, 1971, Sanyasi Raja, 1975, and winning national awards and Bengal Film Journalist Association (BFJA) awards one after the other.

Notable Bengali films where Sudhin Dasgupta composed music include Dakharkora, 1958, Shonkhobela, 1966, Choddhobeshi, 1971, Har Mana Har, 1972, Teen Bhubaner Pare, etc. He has used bayul ( a type of folk song in rural Bengal) in “ogo tomar shesh bicharer asay” for Manna Dey, South Indian tune in “bachao ke acho” in Chaddabeshi, rural touch in “rangila ranga dehe bhab jegeche” for Manobendra Mukherjee, Westernised chorus effect in “aro dure cholo jai” for Asha Bhosle. His lyrics were also very colourful like his compositions. He even taught music to established singer like Bonoshri Sengupta.

An archive should be created where Sudhin Dasgupta’s compositions are restored and preserved for future generations to get inspiration from creative music in the Golden age of Bengali modern songs.



My father Chitta Ranjan Chatterji, Ex – Chief Public Prosecutor, Bankshall Court, Kolkata was the Cultural Secretary of Scottish Church College, Kolkata, the same college where Legendary singer Manna Dey, Eminent Film Director Nabyendu Chatterji ( Director of Award winning films like Chopper, Mansur miyar ghora, etc.), Parthoprotim Chowdhury ( Director of Award Winning film Chayasurjo)studied. In 1956, my father conducted the cultural program in Scottish Church College, inviting Manobendra Mukherjee, Shymal Mitra, Satinath Mukherjee to sing in front of huge crowd in North Kolkata. Satinath Mukherjee with his song “Bonopatho majhe” got huge applaud which was even outplayed by Manobendra Mukherjee with his song “Emni kore porbe mone baki jibon dhore”. The same crowd was spellbound with the orchestration of Sudhin Dasgupta in the song “Elo Borosha je sohosa money tai”.


Sudhin Dasgupta played his compositions in Piano in Public function held in DumDum, Kolkata, in 1955, where Classical Singer Sandhya Mukherjee performed her songs of Uttamkumar’s film Sabar Upare. The program was held at a place close to Sudhin Dasgupta’s own house in Kalicharan Ghosh Road, Sinthee, Kolkata.


Manna Dey gave memorable interviews in DD India, where he said Naushad’s remark about Sudhin Dasputa composition was that “awaaz ki ahmiat samajh me nahi aya, lekin sur bahut hi umdah hai”.

Article By Souvik Chatterji

Master of Law from Warwick University, Coventry, UK.
Master of Law from Case Western Reserve Univerwsity, Cleveland, Ohio,USA.

More Articles by Souvik Chatterji

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Plano Balloon Festival

Plano Balloon Festival

plano balloon festival 2007Plano Balloon Festival image courtsey:

Plano Balloon Festival – Texas.

No kidding.

September 21, 22 and 23 are the days for Texans to celebrate and whole of the US join along with Texans for the Plano Balloon Festival. As it is said the Texans always make it big, if they gain; they gain millions and if they lose they lose millions! And when the celebrate they celebrate it big. Plano Balloon Festival is an example for the largesse these people show in the simple game of ‘flying balloons’! It is a kids’ game others may think but Texans made the game such a big thing (not just the size of the balloons) a ‘game business’ worth millions; taken quite seriously. When the Texas sky is filled with Balloons of all shapes and kaleidoscopic colors, the real game is on the ground; an entertainment business worth several millions go smooth on the wheels of commerce.

Aiva the cow to Felix the cat.

The spectators who assemble to participate in this grand gala exceed several thousands all flock to this place for merry making when it is cool in North Texas during the month of September. They are unmindful of the bucks that are spent as no hard cash can match some pleasure and cash flow free around. They work hard save and spend for themselves.

Plano the balloon festival has everything to satisfy all of them. They sincerely feel the money spent on it is worth. Balloons of various sizes and shapes, cartoon characters and every shape imagination can bring. Some of them have their own identity. Aiva belle the cow, Cheshire cat, High Jack, Pandy, Bunny the energizer, Felix the cat are just some of them.

September 21 to 23.

plano balloonPlano Balloon Festival Image courtsey:

It all began on 4 PM .yesterday (Friday, 21st September, 2007) with the beginning of the bus-service followed by parachute exhibition sponsored by RE/MAX (it is not just watching the 75 cleverly and artistically made hot air balloons taking place there, when the sky is all filled with colorful balloons and the parachute divers who make intrinsic patterns, the ground is a flurry of activities, dances, top artists performing, and stages set for locally groomed artists to make a debut before large audience who have flocked from all parts of the US. A recent trend is that even foreign tourists in the US have started to visit and take part this festival, as the whole atmosphere there is so cheering.

Have a ride.

Admissions cost only $ 8 for a full day to the venue, this does not include $ 5 to be paid to separate events. Saturday and Sunday witness two balloon launches one each at 7 am and 6 pm respectively. Of the crowds many request to have a ride in these hot air balloons, it is allowed for a fee of $ 250, yet there are not enough seats in these balloons. The pilot of the balloon selects the riders based upon his discretionary powers. Children below 10 are not admitted and those below 18 only with parental consent, pregnant ladies please excuse this ride is not for you –for the present. Those who have been recently discharged from hospitals and those with fractures on the bones also are exempted. Even those who are perfectly fit cannot be admitted as seats are limited and requests are many.

Elvis Pressley.

7 pm of Saturday Kraig Parker’s ‘Elvis Pressley’ is there to thrill the spectators ( this in concept of KLUV Movin stage. At 8 - 45 pm Kraig Parker is there to lead the street dances.


A short description of the programs may be given below for those who wish to be there on Sunday. 6 am. Gates and parking lots open and the bus service begins.

6-30 am. Dawn patrol – wake up Plano.

7 am. Balloon launch.

1 pm. Singer/ glitterati show case in the movin stage.

4 pm. EDS Jazz Ensemble in concert.

RE/ MAX Sky dive.

6 pm. Balloon launch.

7pm close. It is the entertainment people seek themselves is the core of all celebrations as family fun filled street dances singing and performances of local artists in the special stages etc add color to the whole events. ‘Lite up the night’ with the new 103.7 fm ballroom show.

Not just seeing and hearing.

balloon festival planoPlano Balloon Festival image courtsey:

The Plano festival is not just for eyes and ears; the foods served in numerous restaurants associated with the festival are very special characteristic of the celebrations. The perfection of matured commercial practices is visible every where, all programs being sponsored by big business houses conceived and executed with panache. There are new things to see, new things to hear and new things to eat, what else. Vine and dine and be happy to the Omar Khayyams who flock to the Plano it seems to ask one thing “why fret, if today be sweet”?

Big hearts!

The roles played by non profit organizations can never be ignored as the real service rendered comes free and those are from these NPOs, in the last (2006) festival about 37 such organizations took part in it. It has been noticed as a trend in the US that people (especially youth) actively participate in such voluntary activities expecting nothing but goodwill. This article is dedicated to those big hearts who serve unconcerned of boundaries and barriers.

Biomecanica - Balloon Festival Plano Video

Video clip of plano balloon festival