Tuesday, March 28, 2017
The above ‘dream photograph’ and the one below are of my son with his cousins. Here you can see them lined up to play a game of ‘Train’ and then joyfully moving across rooms in the house spreading smiles and happiness in the family. My youngest son in not in the photograph, he was not born by then. They are seven cousins and all good friends. Coming across this photograph reminded me of the bonding between my cousins and that of my children and their cousins and of my collection of inspirational, wise, and humorous ‘cousins’ quotes, cousins sayings, and cousins proverbs, collected over a period of time from a variety of sources. Here they are:
Cousins are connected heart to heart,
Distance and time can't keep them apart!
Cousins are friends who will love you forever - Constance Richards
No matter how you feel about your extended family or family gatherings you will be attending. This is because now the ultimate reason for attending family gatherings is for your children to have the time of their lives with their cousins. Little kids love their cousins. I'm not being cute or exaggerating here. Cousins are like celebrities for little kids. If little kids had a People magazine, cousins would be on the cover. Cousins are the barometers of how fun a family get-together will be. Are the cousins going to be there? Fun! - Jim Gaffigan
In my cousin, I find a second self - Isabel Norton
A cousin is a little bit of childhood that can never be lost - Marion C. Garretty
Cousins are people that are ready made friends, you have laughs with them and remember good times from a young age, you have fights with them but you always know you love each other, they are a better thing than brothers and sisters and friends because they are all pieced together as one - Courtney Cox
Cousins are those childhood playmates who grow up to be forever friends - unknown
Cousins are those rare people who ask how we are and then wait to hear the answer - Ed Cunningham
At Christmas, Cousins are the presents under the tree - Karen Decourcey
Every man sees in his relatives, and especially in his cousins, a series of grotesque caricatures of himself - H. L. Mencken
Cousin to cousin we'll always be, special friends from the same family tree - unknown
Cousins by chance, friends by choice - Proverb
I always call my cousin because we're so close. We're almost like sisters, and we're also close because our moms are sisters - Britney Spears
Cousins are Sisters you never had - Reah Glowstorl
Cousins are Cool to see, Impossible to Forget and True to your heart - Leo Farno
Win, lose or draw, you're all my cousins and I love you - Chill Wills
Born as a cousin, made as a friend - Byron Pulsifer
Cousins are not those we do not know but instead part of a family that also provide support and comfort - Byron Pulsifer
A real cousin (or friend) is someone who walks in when the rest of the world walks out - Proverb
I may argue with my brother, but I fight beside my brother against my cousin, and with my cousin against a stranger - Old Arab adage
Our dads used to do this, and now us cousins always get together for it - Larry Lewis
If you have 30 cousins, everything is pretty easy - Joseph P. Kennedy
Within our family there was no such thing as a person who did not matter. Second cousins thrice removed also mattered - Shirley Abbott
A cousin is a little bit of childhood that can never be lost - unknown
Cousins are many. Best friends are few. What a rare delight to find both in you - unknown
Friends are forever, cousins are for life! - unknown
Nobody will understand the craziness of your family better than your cousins - unknown
A cousin is a ready-made friend for life – unknown
Friendship is the only cement that will ever hold the cousins together - Woodrow Wilson
Cousins by blood - friends by choice - Darlene Shaw
at 11:58 AM
Friday, March 24, 2017
World TB Day, falling on March 24th each year, is designed to build public awareness that tuberculosis today remains an epidemic in much of the world, causing the deaths of nearly one-and-a-half million people each year, mostly in developing countries. It commemorates the day in 1882 when Dr Robert Koch astounded the scientific community by announcing that he had discovered the cause of tuberculosis, the TB bacillus. At the time of Koch's announcement in Berlin, TB was raging through the world, causing the death of one out of every seven people. Koch's discovery opened the way towards diagnosing and curing TB and the discovery won him the Nobel Prize in 1905.
Tuberculosis is a common infectious disease caused by bacteria called mycobacterium tuberculosis which affects the lungs. Main symptoms of TB are severe cough that lasts for three weeks or longer, bloody or discoloured sputum, night sweats, fever, fatigue and weakness, pain in the chest, loss of appetite, and pain during breathing or coughing.
India has the highest total number of TB cases worldwide partly due to poor disease management by the healthcare sector. TB can be prevented by vaccination and maintaining high levels of hygiene. Once infected, the patient should follow the medication regimen properly. By not doing so, there are chances of developing resistance to anti-TB drugs resulting in an aggressive form of TB.
To avoid getting an active TB infection:
Eat healthy and take care of your hygiene.
Do not spend long periods of time in stuffy, enclosed rooms with anyone who has active TB until that person has been treated for at least 2 weeks.
Use protective measures, such as face masks, if you work in a facility that cares for people who have untreated TB.
If you live with someone who has active TB, help and encourage the person to follow treatment instructions.
Do not neglect symptoms of TB. It can be easily tested and cured. Please study the attached posters.
at 2:22 PM
Thursday, March 23, 2017
I was reminded of Shaheed Diwas today morning through a newspaper ad on behalf of our Prime Minister by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. Later in the day I witnessed garlanding of Bhagat Singh Statue at Gandhinagar, Hyderabad. I am happy that great freedom fighters like Bhagat Singh (1907–23 March 1931) of Banga Village, Punjab, Sukhdev Thapar (15 May 1907–23 March 1931) of Ludhiana Punjab and Shivram Rajguru (24 August 1908–23 March 1931) of Pune, Bombay Province are remembered by observing Shaheed Diwas. Today I am reminded of their short life and their struggle for our freedom and independence and their hanging by the British Government, 86 years ago on 23rd March 1931. All three were around 24 years when they were hanged to death. This article is to pay homage to these great heroes of our freedom struggle.
We tend to forget many freedom fighters, their struggles and sacrifices and to respect them. It becomes the duty of the Government and the Schools to remind us of these great freedom fighters and to respect and honor them. And this is also the duty of print and electronic media and some bloggers like me. This would enhance our love for our Nation and to strive for its unity and peace.
Here is a brief narrative of these freedom fighters. Bhagat Singh together with his companions strongly believed that only active struggle and ways of extremism and not passive struggle as sermonized by Mahatma Gandhi and his disciples could lead India to independence.
When the British Government implemented an Act to suppress freedom struggle, it gave the British Police a free hand to carry out arrests without any permissions. In order to protest against this Act, Bhagat Singh and his friends carried out a plan to use low intensity bomb inside the Assembly Hall and at the same time ensure that there are no deaths. Immediately after the bombing, Bhagat Singh and his friends voluntarily surrendered. They were charged with attempt to murder and sentenced to 14 years life in 1929.
Further investigation by the Police led to discovery of other members, some of who turned into informants and helped police to connect Bhagat Singh with an alleged murder of a British Officer, John Saunders. Singh was again arrested and sent to another jail where he faced discrimination between British and Indian prisoners and that led to his protest in the form of hunger strike against the discrimination.
In the meantime, the ongoing investigation of framing Bhagat Singh for the alleged murder of the British Officer in the past was hastened by the Viceroy, Irwin in 1930. Bhagat Singh, Rajguru & Sukhdev were sentenced to death and the execution date was fixed to 24th March 1931. The Congress and Gandhi made some attempts to save the lives but that went in vain. Gandhi finally came to an agreement in the Gandhi-Irwin pact which gave the British the go-ahead with execution of Bhagat Singh and his friends.
On 17th March, a telegram was sent to Home Department preponing the execution date to 23rd March and these three freedom fighters were hanged to death at 7.30pm on 23rd March 1931. Their bodies were cremated at the banks of River Sutlej.
The execution was a great blow to the sentiments of our countrymen who in turn were deeply moved and held demonstrations all over the country. There were many who blamed Mahatma Gandhi for not saving Bhagat Singh and held hartals in protest against the Mahatma. The sacrifice of these freedom fighters did not go in vain. Inspired by these heroes countless people joined the freedom struggle and finally we got Independence.
at 11:35 PM
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
River Ganga now a living entity!
Water is of special significance in Hinduism, not only for its life-sustaining properties, but also because of its use in rituals and because of the importance given to cleanliness. Bathing also has religious significance, especially in Rivers considered sacred. The most sacred Rivers are: Ganga, Yamuna, Godavari, Saraswathi, Narmada, Sindhu and Kaveri. Bathing in these Rivers is believed to purify the bather of sins. There are other sacred Rivers too and the Temple tanks are also considered to be holy.
Even before bathing at home or anywhere else the names of these holy Rivers are invoked through a Shloka. This is an important purification ritual in Hinuduism for purifying the water meant for pooja and bathing. Reciting the following Shloka sincerely brings one the benefit of taking bath in these holy Rivers:
“Gange Cha Yamune Chaiva Godavari Saraswati Narmade Sindhu Kaveri Jalesmin Sannidhim Kuru”
Sanskrit to English; word by word meaning is - Ganga, Yamuna, Godavari, Saraswathi, Narmada, Sindhu, Kaveri - names of holy rivers; cha - of; jalesmin - in this water; sannidhim - presence; kuru- invoke. This means, in this water, I invoke the presence of holy waters from the Rivers Ganga, Yamuna, Godavari, Saraswati, Narmada, Sindhu and Kaveri.
But unfortunately these sacred Rivers are highly polluted today due to industrial pollutants and untreated sewage. River Ganga is considered to be the cradle of the Indian civilization and the holiest of all Rivers in India but today despite many programs to clean River Ganga it still remains highly polluted. This matter has gone to Uttarakhand High Court following a petition on a matter related to mining and stone crushing along the banks of the Ganga,
And yesterday the High Court in a landmark judgment gave the status of “First living entity of India” to River Ganga! This judgment gives River Ganga rights similar to a living person and is expected to have a positive bearing on efforts to clean up the polluted and much abused River. Similar status has been given to Yamuna, the tributary of Ganga, which has practically become a sewer.
The division bench of Justices Rajeev Sharma and Alok Singh cited the example of River Whanganui in New Zealand which has been given such a status and also named the “Legal Parents” of the two Rivers, Ganga and Yamuna - The Director, Namami Gange Project for cleaning and rejuvenating the River, and the Chief Secretary and the Advocate General of Uttarakhand to protect, conserve and preserve the Rivers and their tributaries.
I am happy with this verdict and wish that the common public will once again start respecting the holy Rivers and stop polluting them and help the administration in keeping our Rivers clean.
at 11:18 PM
Wednesday, March 15, 2017
Today marks the 140th Anniversary of the first ever Cricket Test Match in the world. It was between England and Australia. Today’s Google Doodle which you can see above brought this information to my notice. The letters of the Google logo are spread across players from both the teams across the pitch. Strangely enough, although the two participating teams were from England and Australia, the Google Doodle for the 140th Anniversary of the first Cricket Test Match is only being delivered to the cricket crazy nations of India and Australia. On my behalf, to celebrate the birth of Test Cricket, I am posting this article for every Cricket lover worldwide.
In brief, this is the information I gathered about the First Test that started today, 140 years ago.
This very first Test Match was a timeless Test consisting of four ball Overs and it was completed within five days, including a rest day on the Sunday. It was played at Melbourne Cricket Ground from 15th May to 19th May 1877 and Australia won the Match by 45 Runs.
The match started with England's Alfred Shaw bowling the first ever delivery in Test cricket to Australia's Charles Bannerman, after the hosts won the toss. Bannerman went on to score the first ever Test century and then 165 before retiring hurt, in a total of 245 during Australia’s first innings. 49-year-old James Southerton, who was joint top wicket taker in the first innings with 3-61, was the oldest player on either side and to this day remains the oldest Test debutant ever.
In response England posted 196 with Surrey’s Harry Jupp (63) top scoring. He was lucky to do so however, after stepping on his stumps before even scoring a run. Neither umpire noticed as the Australians appealed in vain, while 4,000 spectators at the MCG booed in disapproval. In fact, Jupp was not meant to even play due to an eye infection but had to take the field as England's twelve-man squad had been reduced to eleven after they returned from the New Zealand leg of their unofficial Cricket tour. Wicket-keeper Ted Pooley was in a Christchurch jail after becoming embroiled in a betting scandal. England fared better second time around, dismissing the hosts for 104 in their second innings in front of a 12,000 strong crowd on the Saturday. But set 154 to win, England crumbled to 108 all out, with English-born slow bowler Tom Kendall taking 7 for 55 as Australia won the first ever Test Match.
However England won the Second Test Match in the series by four wickets, so the series was a draw at 1:1.
You may see this special video brought out on this occasion:
Here are Match Details, Match Notes and Score Cards:
at 9:06 PM
On a breezy morning, Amidst plants and flowers, As the Sun was rising, The feeling was joyous! Happily as we strolled, Pic...