Small – Big Groups and Happy New Year

New Year will be celebrated tomorrow. There will be big parties where thousands gallons of wine will be served, tons of chickens will be fried and sweets will be distributed. And sure there are at least 70,000 families effected with Psunami still in shock without any New Year wishes. There are also supporters who will not celebrate New Year in parties and they will send the money for the relief work that was intended to spend on New Year celebrations. But the irony is that these people form the small group compared to the former group of celebrators.
For me there are three new years one 1st January, other 23rd January and one more 1st of Biasakh (first month of Indian Calendar). For that reason too 1st January is not very much important to me. Like others I too make wishes and exchange greetings to follow the convention. But doing parties never attracted me. By this way I belong to the small group. For the coming first January I am determined to arise awareness among the people for collecting funds for the relief of Psunami affected and donate it to PM relief fund. This is apart from our contribution of one day’s salary towards the fund. As today when my friends heard my decision to celebrate the New Year this way they appreciated it. In contrast there are also people around me collecting money for the party and the wine to be purchased for tonight and tomorrow. My effort to convince them almost became ridicule and they form the majority of society.
There are people, who agree to help according to their capability when I reach them. Based upon this I see there are two groups again in form of the donors and the receivers. The donors have the basic helping attitude and they form the large group and the receivers have the motivation to convince them to donate and they form the small group. Going door to door and making people aware of these I belong to the small group and I like to in this group, which is respected after wards they have done the job.
This small group will also celebrate the New Year; there will be food of social service, wine of sweat and making arrangement for the basic livelihood of at least one person, who have missed everything except the soul.
Wish A Happy New Year to big and small groups in the world and may next year bring good benedictions to all of us.

Bihar – the write thing! -(5) – Tea Production

Chai – Chai! Garam Chai! The most commonly heard words in north Indian stations used by tea vendors. Next time you may be sipping the Chai produced in Bihar in stations or in home. Chai (tea) is the most common beverage used by Indians. The mostly used variety among different kinds of tea is CTC tea. The reason it is called CTC, comes from the words Crush, Tear and Curl. Crush, Tear, and Curl is a method of processing the tea during production in factory. The tea afer passed through a series of cylindrical rollers with hundreds of small sharp "teeth" that Cut, Tear, and Curl to give it specific taste we enjoy in morning cups. And the Biharis have started producing tea of this type. Adding to your surprise, this variety of tea is as par the Assam CTC and it’s proved by agencies.
And the place where it is being produced is Kishanganj, which is also my home district. Kishanganj is at the down belt of Darjeeling and it have appropriate climate to produce tea, which needs high rainfall and sloppy land. The lands of Kishanganj have produced several crore kgs of green leaves. This is done by more than 10,000 acres of productive gardens. There is an aim to cultivate it on more than 20,000 acres of land and it will be attained very soon. More than 15,000 people are employed in this industry.
Once you come to these tea gardens, it will make you feel the surroundings of the moist green tea gardens of Assam. Here in Kishanganj there are no hills but plenty of small rivers and highlands make the environment tea friendly. Some gardens are near the main town too. If I drive 10 minute from my home, I will reach the green gardens. The gardens are new, they use negligible quantity of the pesticides and the land of Kishanganj is highly fertile .All these together makes the flavour and taste of this tea unique (Unless you have tasted the varieties of different tea you can’t find the difference).Do the local people take the local tea? Due to high cost of production and high demand outside Bihar the price of the locally produced tea is not less than the Assam CTC tea. So local peole buy Assam tea too. Despite the high competions in tea sector and the dominance of Darjeeling and Assam tea the Bihar tea succeeded in making it’s own place. From overall perspective it compares the well known CTC tea in local market and is being sold outside Bihar too. This tea is being exported too. In market if you see a tea with a brand name Kishanbari tea, be sure it’s from Kishanganj. And you can be sure that Biharis are good entrepreneurs ! Chai! Chai! Han Mere Bihari Bhai!
Get a glimpse of the tea garden in Bihar.

Life is like “Darpan – Chhaya”

Today I have something to share with you and its about a Nepali film. Few years back I had watched a Nepali movie –Darpan Chhaya during my Siliguri stay after hearing it’s fame. By that time I had became well conversant in Nepali. After watching the movie I realized that one can grasp the essence of the movie as well as the excellent music even if one knows just Hindi. The whole movie is finely weaved around the delicate human relationships. As the name of the movie Darpan Chhaya suggests that the life is like that mirror and shadow. The end makes the viewer emotionally delicate. If one does not get emotional after seeing the movie, I am sure he have an unusual EQ (Emotional Quotient).
The story of the movie is about a love triangle. It’s about two boys both good students in a collage, and one beautiful girl in the same college. If one have started guessing the story and he may be guessing correct.
Although I have not seen many contemporary movies but I am sure that it is off track movie. The girl got both of them but none could get her! Should I tell why they could not get her? Like me, many people may not like to hear the story of movie before seeing it. Therefore assuming that you are like me I am not telling the whole story here unless asked to do so. But the movie rises some question in our daily life also? Does being attentive to any one is a mistake? Is hearing pains or laughing together needs to be ‘blamed’ as a love symptom? Is getting served from someone or serving someone is seen as a weakness? Attributing all these to flowery love, the selfish love, is justifiable? Why the expectations from human rises on existence of these basic and natural human traits.
And when this becomes the case between two complementary gender the expectations must be balanced. Did any one have seen the Diary of Brahma who is believed to write the three events of life? Then why should we be bothered about the middle event of marriage so much?
I remember the quote of Bajaj, the industrialist, which means “Believe that today is your last day, tomorrow you will be remembered by your today”. Then why should we dream too much when we know that this day may be the last day of our life. Can’t human live such a short life after hearing the voices one likes and tell his voices to the persons who will hear him giving attention? Why is it given a wrapper of selfish love? I don’t have answers. The central character has left an indelible impression on me.

Our` whole short life is just like the mirror and shadow. We need not expect much from it but we can certainly live it fully with a selfless love. And this is lesson the movie gives to the viewers. Assuming I am a movie critique then so I give it 4.9 out of 5 points and remaining 0.1 point is cut off because of the emotional sufferings it gives. Any one who has access to Nepali movies should see it.

Sea, Man and God

This is my impression of Tsunami using my paintbrush.Please see this painting at this link to get a sound effect. You may be asked to download a .wav file and it wouldn't harm your computer.

P.S: The free angletown has removed the free service to host photos without notice 🙁 .

Bihar – the write thing ! (4) – Common man and Media

Before I continue this series, I would like to make clear about the phenomenon about being Bihari which arose during comments and chats. Here the Bihari means the residents of Bihar, who are proud of many things and at the same time devoid of respect which was available to them in past as a resident of this particular territory.
No doubt they are spread over the whole India doing various odd jobs and also on the responsible posts and there is something which makes us some what different from the average Indian. Be it be the large number of desperate candidates travelling outside the state for competition exams or the red shirt wearing coolies spread over New Delhi station to Lumding station in lower Assam after taking Chura( Bitten Rice) and Gur (Jagery) tied in cloth or Sattu sarbat, strongly determined to face challenges. Be it the representation in ministerial posts in center or the needy voters who take money from ministers for buying sweets or the poor literacy rate or failed population control efforts we Biharis make a difference for sure.
My readers may blame it to media hype or some specific facetious (Cleverly amusing in tone) leaders for making Bihar backward state.
I am not giving the gloomy picture of Bihar but I am trying to find out the circumstances which make the Bihar a backward state. Blaming was never my aim; my effort is to find out the lacuna (A blank gap or missing part) within us as well as the best characteristic dormant within us.
Please don’t blame media; they too don’t have many things to publish here. For them doing here business is more difficult than other state.
I reside near the border of Bihar and West Bengal. The daily newspapers published from West Bengal cost 1.00 Rs. – 2 .50 Rs. and the newspapers published from Bhagalpur and Patna cost 3.50 Rs. or more on weekdays. The reasons can be guessed out; the prominent advertisers come in less number. But it mostly contains local trivial news and many a times missing national and international news. To increase the sale of newspaper they will arrange various contests for local people. For me the headlines in these newspapers are distractive. Some cheap quality magazines are well sold too here which have a large number of young readers. Bihar even though is the birth place of many Hindi scholars, but their readers form only a higher stratum of society.
One thing more in constant demand is competition books and Biharis are specialized in preparing for the railways, banks and Staff selection competitions (Description of preparing for engineering and medical and UPSC can make several blogs again). Biharis are well known for being good at Mathematics and reasoning and a bit weak in English .Their mathematics inclination is strengthened by the fact that the birth place of famous Aaryabhatta, the genius was in Kusumpur (Currently Patna).

Am I am too descriptive about Bihar? May you need change of taste, so wait for the sip of fine CTC tea in next episode in this foggy winter which is being produced in Bihar again.

A tribute to P.V.Narashimha Rao

Pamulaparthy Venkata Narashimha Rao was one of the personalities who changed the way people live and think in India.
This multi-facet personality was born on 28 June 1921. He survived many waves in his lifetime and similarly set free many waves too. His tenures at several important ministries were remarkable in terms of decisions taken. He was given responsible ministries like foreign, defense, home and HRD. During the HRD minister he conceived the scheme of Navodaya Vidyalaya. I am one of the beneficiaries of this scheme. I got a chance to develop my overall personality in the Navodaya Vidyalaya on the full free scholarship provided by HRD ministry, otherwise my life would have taken an unknown turn.

He is often glorified as modern Chanakya of Indian economy. During his Prime Minister tenure he brought in the economist, Manmohan Singh as finance minister and set the mantra of LPG (Liberalisation, Privatization and Globalisation) free to spread. Foreign investment started pouring in and economic reforms took place and this LPG has left an essence for us to think differently.

As a prominent leader of Congress he was vulnerable to several cruel charges too. December 6, 1992, he was charged as not taking pre-emptive action to prevent the demolition of Babri-Masjid. To follow it there was Harshad Mehta case, which never got proved and the JMM bribery case when he was acquitted of charges.

Overall he was a well-known linguist, statesman and a political philosopher too. He was again a masterpiece of verbal economy. When he wrote The Insider, which is in between an autobiography and fiction, in which he have shown the truth underlying the Indian politics.

My tribute to the great thinker, visionary and literary figure who told on being sworn in as prime minister of India," As an Individual, I feel overwhelmed, utterly humble, but as representative of great party, I feel like a colossus”.

May his soul rest in peace and see his dreams come true.

Bihar – the write thing ! – (3) – Democracy

I am fortunate enough to visit the centre of first democratic republic of the world, Vaishali, in one of my Navodaya Vidyalaya, Purnea educational excursions. This is situated at 55 km. from Patna across the Ganga. Vaishali also known as Lichhwi and Vajji Sangha set a trend for the world to follow the new concept of democracy. The trend is still in Bihar but the method and values have reversed. One can see the deep malaise in the majority of the vote bank of democracy here. Hopeful citizens will go in form of the hypnotized herd and will stand below the dais to hear their leaders. These speeches of the top leaders are too facetious to be taken seriously by the intellectual class. Even after their term in power, the representatives will hark back the issues raised in the last elections. And we have patience to hear them! After casting the precious vote with a great hope, the common man is paranoid about his security and future generation.
Among the development programs and schemes promulgated, very few will reach the base class of beneficiaries. How much of the amount is sent and how much reaches the needy hands is again a statistics beyond the common man’s capacity of calculation.

I do agree that when most of these issues are prevalent in the other states too then why should Bihar be blamed so much. Yes, we need to be get blamed several times more. We taught everyone the lesson of democracy and we are the biggest sufferer now. Where are those lessons we taught about the power of people for the welfare of people during 600 B.C. in Vaishali? Are those buried or got lost? If those lessons are anywhere in existence ,we need to revise it once more and set a trend again to be followed by others and prove that yes we are Biharis.

Samudra Manthan and 14 Ratnas

According to Hindu mythology Devtas (Gods) and Asuras (Demons) once decided to churn out the ocean of milk to solve the issue of supremacy among them. The churning stick was Mandra mountain on the back of Kurma ( an epical tortoise).The rope needed to churn was the Vashuki ( multiple headed king of snakes of Lord Vishnu). Lord Vishnu sat on the the pivot such that it will not skid in the ocean. All the Gods were on one side and all the Asuras were on the other side. As the churning of the ocean reached the peak, from the froth a deadly scum started forming. All gods and Devils got frightened after seeing it. It was Vish (Poison). Either someone had to swallow it or everyone was going to be in trouble. Seeing the unwillingness of everyone, Lord Shiva came to rescue and he took the Vish in mouth but did not swallowed it and kept it in the throat static. Hence his throat turned out blue due to effect of poison. Since then he is also known as NeelKanth ( Having blue throat) .
After this event the churning started again to result the chaturdash ratnas (fourteen precious ratnas /precious things). These ratnas produced from the Samudra Manthan are as follows:

1. ‘Chandra’ ( Moon)
2. ‘Parijat’ , a tree in the Paradise of Lord Indra
3. ‘Airavat’ , a multi-tusked elephant for again Lord indra
4. ‘Kamadhenu’ , a cow which provides desired objects
5. ‘Uchchaihsravas’ the white horse for Lord Indra
6. ‘Sankha’ the conch of Lord Vishnu used for victory
7. ‘Gada’
8. ‘Laxmi’ , goddess of wealth
9. ‘Rambha’ , the apsara (celestial beauty) for heaven
10. ‘Ratnas’, ( gems and jewel )
11. ‘Kalpavriksha , a tree fulfilling one’s wishes
12. ‘Dhanwantari’, the physician for all Gods.
13. ‘Mada , a goddess
14. ‘Amrit’ (the nectar drinking which one becomes immortal) in a golden chalice ( Kumbha).

Here each of the ratnas has a mythology attached to it, each one quiet interesting. I don’t know if this cyber world likes to hear more about these.

Bihar – the write thing ! – (2) – Common Life

Bihar is the birth place of Lord Buddha and 24 Jain Tirthankars (Monks/Saints) and many more important people. Because of the large number of Buddhist Vihar (temple), it got it’s name “Bihar”. May it be the inherited nature of the common man they are still peace loving and religious in nature. If one visits the the remote basic village of Bihar, he can find out the common man working in the fields wearing a Dhoti upto his knees and a towel on the shoulder. The married women if working in the fields will sure have their head covered with a Ghunghat. The men and women are cool and religious in nature. The atheists rarely exist in Bihar.There are several nice blogs on the festivals of Bihar in my friends blogs. I need not write more in this context.
One thing is quiet prevalent in the villages of Bihar, the sense of pride and prestige.
If any way the prestige is hurt, the gentleman will explore his manhood to save it and the exploration tools may be powerful bombastic words and muscular power and if needed Licensed guns (Unlicensed ones may be manufactured if needed!). The prestige issues are often related to the strong caste system and often catalyzed by the political interference.
The fact of caste system exists almost all over India. Here the situation is more deep in the basic thinking of the people. The caste system is the staple food of the political leaders. We have two main categories: “Agra”( forward caste ) and Pichra ( backward caste). I don’t want to go in detail of classes and subclasses. When two unknown Biharis meet, naturally like any other people they will ask their names too. And soon they will try to sort out from which caste the particular person belong by the surname. The following conversation will depend on the nearness of the caste between both.
Interestingly, people when ask my name they confuse seeing no clue from my surname. Hence unable to find out my caste in my surname they will ask my father’s name. Even after when they try to subcategorize my caste, my answer is that I have red coloured blood like your’s. Then they will not ask anymore. I must admit that many of families have adopted the new pattern of removing the surname from the name.There is a new trend here too to delete the surname from the name which signifies one’s caste. As Pankaj Kumar Singh will write Pankaj Kumar and Puja Kumari Sinha will write Puja Kumari.

In my office there are two categories of caste here too and interestingly I belong to both categories of people. Actually I don’t like to belong any category, everyone thinks that I belong to their category because I am close to everyone in official work as well as for their personal ventilation of thought. Here in villages, trade unions, politics and in every department this chronic disease exists. Except the basic human affection tablets in regular dose, I don’t see any remedy of it. The elite well literate class is not an exception too.

Looking the ages back, I can see that the birth of Lord Buddha and Mahavira on this land went in vain. Even after centuries when the other countries are following their preaching about the basic human respect and values, It does not buzz in the ears of we Biharis. We are unable to co-operate each other in progress after removing the caste disparities.