Wednesday, 14 October 2020

The Secret Place

"I last saw her here", the local tried to explain to the police.

They said, "Yes, we already know that! That is her bicycle." 

PHOTO PROMPT - C.E.Ayr
"But, what did you do after you had lunch with her on the 'Boat Restaurant'?"

"You both entered together, enjoyed a three-course meal, and then only you came out. Where’s she?"

Thursday, 8 October 2020

Trade Secret

The owner was shocked to see her sweet-shop. 

What was all the mess?

Who had broken into her shop?

PHOTO PROMPT - Sandra Crook
Her locker had been stolen! 

No, it did not have any cash.

It had something more valuable- 

Wednesday, 23 September 2020

Lucky Sauce

Meera was the best fashion photographer in town.

Invitation to 'Lucky Sauce' seemed out of place.

Top businessman Vikrant Soni had made his fortune selling hot garlic sauce.

PIC- Dale Rogerson

Nevertheless, she went. 

Meera was happy to find a leading model, Saira, with Vikrant Soni.

Monday, 21 September 2020

NOW Is The Time

This moment is all we have. NOW is the time, my friend!

These words and some lyrics of songs of Hindi movies, came to my mind on seeing the latest IndiSpire topic-

IndiSpire-343- Some people are busy living while others are busy dying. What would you like to tell either or both of these categories?

There is no tomorrow as tomorrow never comes. 

The coming moment is going to go away. If possible, live your life in the moment that is going away.  This song states this-

"Aane wala pal jaane wala hai. Ho sake to is mein, zindagi bitado pal jo ye jaane wala hai..." 

- Golmaal , 1979 Hindi movie

In other words, live in the moment before it is over.

Thursday, 17 September 2020

That Wooden Chair

Rizzy answered the bell to find a strange looking person standing at her door. 

“I want that wooden chair.”

“Which one?”

"The one in your attic.” 

Rizzy was startled. 

“What about it? Wait! How do you know about that wooden chair? And that it’s in the attic?

“I scanned a while ago.”

Image - Roger Bultot











“It’s no longer here. Just left it in the backyard for disposal.”

Friday, 11 September 2020

The Holiday

She was taking a vacation after almost a year after the death of her partner. 

She had no clue why she had chosen that place for a holiday.

The solo-traveller started feeling secure the moment she landed at Down Island. 

A souvenir store near her hotel caught her fancy.

She wanted to visit, but it was closed. 

Pic - Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

On the day of her return, she was thrilled to see the shop was open.

Self Love


 "Main apni favourite hoon" (I am my favourite) 

- Geet in the Hindi movie "Jab We Met"

How many of us have said the above line or believe it? Do we focus on "I, Me, Myself"?

Serve, Service

We are taught to think of others and serve.

Thinking of self is being selfish, isn't it?

But, trying to make life easy for others is a never-ending job as human wants and expectations are unlimited. One can never satiate all the desires of others.

Rather than looking for validation from others, one can and must say some encouraging words to self. 

Why will others want to have a relationship with us, when we are not comfortable with our own self?

Some people cannot even spend a few minutes alone. What demons disturb them? 

Living with and loving own self is a continuing love-story with no rivals as it is rare to get someone who loves us more than we do!


Soul and Super Shakti

There is a lot within us. There's heaven and hell... The power or "shakti" within us is great.

As per the Bhagavad Gita, we are not the body; rather the soul or the spirit within. This is energy spanning several lifetimes. The supreme Godhead has the super shakti. 

The focus must be to recognize this and change things inside of us, if and when we feel something is amiss, so that the outside gets changed too. 


Service Before Self and Sacrifice

We are taught expected to uphold- "Service before self".

That is the motto of the Indian Army as well. They sacrifice themselves for us, our country and our countrymen without thinking of their personal lives.

"Mother and motherland are greater than heaven." 

Mothers are great examples too. They think of their children and family totally sacrificing self love and time.

Just focus on self or take care and act for the larger good? Love has to start from someone or somewhere. Why not pat our own back and transfer or shower the love and energy like a chain? 

When there's sacrifice or sharing of self and self love, there is divinity as the higher power is automatically invoked. God is watching. Let us improve our quota and score.

If each of us worked did this, our nation and world will be great.

Wednesday, 2 September 2020

The Assignment

It was her first job assignment abroad.

She had been asked to report about a departmental store- Haldey's.

As a mystery auditor, she knew her job.

The client knew her caliber. 

They were spending a lot for her trip.

Pic - CEAyr

While she was clicking photographs, an elderly gentleman called out asking her if she can help him shop.

Wednesday, 19 August 2020

Home Is Where The Heart Is

Siri was showing her old family album to her grandchildren.

"And this used to be my home when I was a little girl," she said.

Her youngest grandson four-year old Pilu showed extra interest.

Image
PHOTO PROMPT - Ted Strutz

"What about the swing on the mango tree?" he asked.  

Siri was astounded.

Friday, 14 August 2020

Real Weaver of The Maths Saree

A "Maths Saree" was in the news recently. There are mathematical symbols and equations all over.

Padma Shri actress Vidya Balan had worn it for the promotion of her Hindi movie- Shakuntala Devi.

If you are a handloom lover, you would not have missed this news as it brought a smile to many faces.

The Sambalpuri Saree connection with Team Vidya Balan had been done by my sister, Amrita Sabat, through our brand Utkalamrita of our company Sabat Exports Pvt. Ltd. Information about the Saree - weaver's name from whom Saree was sourced, village name, district name, and other technical details of the Saree had been shared. Amrita had also requested their team to share a video message for our weavers, which Vidya Balan graciously heeded. 

Wednesday, 12 August 2020

Cupid Is Mine!

Rizy walked into the Gifts Shop.

As she started looking at the stuffed-toys, the salesman handed a sweet Cupid with bow and arrows.

Rizy loved it!

Hugging the toy, Rizy said, "Cupid Is Mine!"

Image
Pic- Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Thursday, 30 July 2020

Naked Truth - Star And Sweet

naked truth

Plain unadorned facts, without concealment or embellishment. For example, What I've told you is the naked truth. This expression supposedly alludes to a fable in which Truth and Falsehood went bathing, Falsehood then dressed in Truth's clothes, and Truth, refusing to take another's clothes, went naked. [Late 1500s]
                                                                                                  - Definition in Dictionary.com

The reason for asking the above questions about "naked truth" is as I am totally baffled with what is going on.

Let us take a Star and a Sweet for example.
Star- Sushant Singh Rajput 
Sweet- Rasagola 

Star
It was declared that Sushant Singh Rajput, a top highly talented and promising Bollywood actor, has "committed suicide" on July 14, 2020.

We trust the police and thought that their statement is true.
I could never believe that one of my favourite stars, who has such a positive outlook and spirit could ever do so.
The same thoughts had come to my mind when I had learned of the so-called "suicide" of Sunanda Pushkar.

But, now we know that both these "suicide" cases, and many other cases like this, are actually made to appear in such garb.
Within a few minutes of Sushant's mysterious death, despite the police knowing the truth and technical flaws in the suicide theory, they never gave an inkling of the reality- that SSR has actually been murdered.
The "suicide", mental health", "depression" news was made to spread like wildfire.
So many social media posts, videos etc now have the wrong news- suicide theory.
Problem is replication as whoever sees such wrong info in the future, continues the same theory...

I pray that may the killers of Sushant Singh Rajput be nabbed and punished and may our star get justice soon.

Sweet
It is being constantly declared for many years that the king of sweets, Rasagola or Rasgulla (or spelled in any which way- Rasagulla/Rasgola/Rasogolla/Rosogolla...) is "invented" in Bengal.

Odisha has centuries-old connection with Rasagola, but many are simply unwilling to accept the reality of this continuing tradition on the last day of the Ratha Jatra at Puri, Odisha! 
Misleading info and fake news is still being spread! 
Many posts, videos, articles etc. have wrong information. 
This despite Odisha having earned the GI Tag and having shown that the word 'Rasagola' has existed in Odia literature even before Kolkata city was established! 

Having spent more than the last five years of my life being deeply involved with the Rasagola case, I am totally at a loss for words!
Exactly 5 years ago, on July 30, 2015, had started #RasagolaDibasa- celebration of a Rasgulla Day on social media.
Last year, on July 29, 2019, Odisha earned the GI tag for Odisha Rasagola.
Yesterday, was the first anniversary of our Rasagola GI tag.

Being enthused, I shared the video of a newly-wedded Doctor that I received on WhatsApp. Doctor Babu's maiden visit to his in-laws place is to be seen to be believed! His loving in-laws have taken great efforts to prepare and serve 105 Odia dishes including Rasagola. I loved the thoughtful video oozing great honour, love, care, and the loooong list of dishes that I shared it on some groups in FaceBook.
Today, I saw many comments that informed me that some people still believe that Rasagola belongs to Bengal!
I instantly felt transported to back in time- perceptions haven't changed much despite doggedly trying to promote the truth on social media! 
But, the eternal optimist in me soon saw that many had provided the correct info as reply to the ignorant comments. Hard work hasn't gone waste!

I pray that may we never have to encounter any 'debate/controversy' or give explanation or defend Rasagola-origin-in-Odisha case!

Conclusion

In both the above-mentioned Star & Sweet cases, the narrative has been decided and set.
All the conversations, perceptions, attitudes etc are based on this.
Further conversations are based on the first-hand information provided.
Thus, if an influential/wise/learned/authoritative/reliable person has stated or published something first, it is accepted as truth.
Blindly accepted and promoted as truth! 
No one suspects any foul play or vested interests or cultural appropriation!
No one knows the naked truth! 

Many do not care.
Lies are wearing the clothes of truth and have made their presence everywhere! 

If Y, who is not well-known (but has research/experience), says something serious, you don't believe her.
But, if X, who is a well-known trustworthy culture/media personality, either says something frivolous or copies the exact thing as Y has been saying (and worse, claims to be his own original idea), you believe him!

Star & Sweet cases thus have dark and sour dealings.
If such high-profile cases with solid evidence and backing meet with a fate, then imagine how the truth will be possible for the lesser-known reality...

Truth is whose responsibility? 
Please let us be responsible citizens and report correctly.
No, SSR did NOT commit "suicide."
No, Rasagola has NOT originated in "Bengal."

Why is it so tough to accept, support and promote the truth?

We believe- "Satyameva Jayate".
Truth always wins.
"Truth is still the truth even if no one believes it; Lie is still a lie even if everyone believes it."
"A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes." 
There is hope that truth will be out one day.
But, how will this happen if we don't support/say?

What do you say?
Do share your comments below.

Tuesday, 28 July 2020

Kendrapara Rasabali

Rasabali is a traditional sweet of Odisha that is prepared using  chhena i.e. cottage-cheese and thickened sweetened milk. 
This sweet is being offered everyday for the past several centuries at the Baladevjew Temple at Kendrapara district of Odisha. 
It is also one of the bhoga of the Shree Jagannath Temple, Puri, Odisha.
Rasabali is a very popular sweet dish and has many fans.

Wednesday, 22 July 2020

The Missing Diary

My diary was missing.

I had looked for it everywhere.

It had my deepest secrets.

I was not too worried that anyone could read it.

I write using 'invisible ink' and only I can read the text...

I had been documenting for long.

Had someone stolen it?

Wednesday, 15 July 2020

The Parcel

Leela got a call from the courier delivery.

The parcel had her name. 

She opened the box. 

It was a pink dress that was a size smaller! 

Who could have gifted her? 

Her birthday was some days away...


PHOTO PROMPT - Jean L. Hays

She did not recognize the sender's name and address.

The given phone-number wasn’t in her contact.

Dil Bechara : Missing Sushant Singh Rajput

Exactly a month ago, we lost a young and talented star, Sushant Singh Rajput (SSR).
The nation is still mourning and many are looking for justice for him.
We really do not know what happened and why we have to face such a situation.

We watched the movie trailer of Dil Bechara and the super song that Sushant has pulled off in one shot.
SSR has such a happy personality in the movie and in the real-life videos with his disarming smile and cool and smart style.

In Dil Bechara, these inspiring positive words sound so nice in his voice-:
"Janam kab lena hai aur marna kab hai- Hum decide nahi karsakte hain;
Par kaise jeena hai- woh Hum decide karsakte hain."
"We cannot decide when to take birth or when to die;
But, we can decide how to live life."

Sunday, 12 July 2020

News Reports About Rasagola Dibasa 2020

Ratha Jatra 2020 came to a close on a sweet note with the celebration of the Niladri Bije ritual on the last day of the Ratha Jatra when Rasagolas are offered as prasad/bhoga.

It was great to see news reports about the Adhara Pana and Niladri Bije rituals in many dailies.
Ratha Jatra 2020 made history being celebrated despite the #Covid19 shutdown.
This year, Rasagola Dibasa was on 4th July, 2020. Rasagola Dibasa celebration in 2020 was unique as the event was celebrated at homes and many prepared Rasagolas for the first time to offer to the deities as per our continuing tradition.
The following news report about "Rasagola Dibasa" celebration this year was published on 5th July 2020 in the Sunday Times of India, Bhubaneswar edition.
Rasagola Dibasa
We have been advocating the use of our terms for long. 
At least the local papers based in Odisha should report the celebration correctly. 
As we have been celebrating #RasagolaDibasa, the spelling "Rasagola Dibasa" should be used as has been done in the above report in TOI. 
But, this article is not available online.

Wednesday, 8 July 2020

The Eyewitness

She had a feeling something sinister was happening on the street. 

Her kitchen-window overlooked the road from where she could hear the commotion.

She went ahead and opened the window.

PHOTO PROMPT @ A. Noni Mouse
She heard loud shrieks, but couldn't see anything. 
------------------------------------------------------------

Friday, 3 July 2020

Ratha Jatra 2020

Jai Jagannath!

Rasagola Dibasa is celebrated on Niladri Bije, the last day of the Ratha Jatra (Rath Yatra).
This year (2020), the tithi date is - July 4th.


It feels great that the Ratha Jatra 2020 is being celebrated this year.
Covid-19 had nearly succeeding in stalling celebrations.
After the June 22nd verdict that permitted celebration, sans devotees and with restrictions, many like me were super-thrilled.          
Shree Jagannatha had interfered and imposed His will.
The Ratha Jatra must go on and it did, just as per His direction.

On June 9, 2020, the Orissa High Court had directed the state Govt. to conduct Ratha Jatra as per the guidelines of Covid-19. The other Jagannath Temples around the state had already conveyed their decision about not conducting the event this year.
However, on June 18, 2020,  Jagannath devotees like me were shocked to learn the Apex Court’s judgment that circumstances do not allow the Ratha Jatra this year.
How can a virus emerge victorious?
Shree Jagannath is the highest authority and identity for Odisha and Odias. The previous tagline of Odisha was- ‘The Soul of Incredible India’. 
Mahaprabhu Shree Jagannath is the soul of Odisha. He is the living deity, who dresses up, eats, sleeps, and even goes for an annual journey with His siblings, that too following set rules and centuries-old rituals and traditions.

In emergency meeting, Odisha state cabinet decided to obey Supreme Court (SC) ban on not holding this year’s Ratha Jatra owing to the Covid-19 pandemic and had directed district administrations to strictly implement the SC order.
As per Govt sources:
“The sense of the cabinet was that since SC has given primacy to life and health and the prevailing pandemic situation where social distancing is important, the Ratha Jatra should be avoided. It was unanimously decided to obey the direction instead of challenging the order. One has to accept that it’s the Lord Himself who does everything.”
Supreme Court announced Ratha Jatra won’t be held.

People resigned saying: 
“It is God’s will. Accept it.”
“Everything happens as per His wish.”
“God can’t save.”
“Don’t put lives in danger.”
“Everything is pre-planned by Him.”
“He is saving His devotees from coronavirus.”
“When devotees are not allowed (as He wants to save them and it is His will), for whom should the Lord come out?”
“Lord Jagannath does not want to see Bada Danda without devotees.”
“It’s not Supreme Court, but the Mahaprabhu, the supreme authority, decides what’ll happen.” 

Supporters of Ratha Jatra like me wrote to the state Govt. and the Supreme Court requesting reconsideration and favourable verdict.

Chief Justice Of India (CJI) had said, “Lord will not forgive me.”
Harish Salve stated about huge “crowd".
They gave their judgment based on the facts that they were communicated that 10-12 lakhs devotees from around the world would congregate to participate in the festival. They assumed that crowd cannot be controlled and infections will increase. But, how can lakhs of people assemble in such a short duration when there are no special trains or travel convenience as in previous years?

The petitioner Odisha Vikas Parishad is not even clear about Ratha Jatra’s duration – for how many days it is held- “10-12 days”. They had demanded for Ratha Jatra to be “stopped or postponed”. It certainly could not have been postponed as there is a particular tithi – Ashadha Shukla Paksha Dwitiya- when Ratha Jatra is held each year as per continuing tradition.

Why was the Supreme Court dragged into this and why was wrong information communicated as the grounds of this case?
Some devotees, who wanted the Ratha Jatra to be held this year, took to social media to express their disappointment. Puri was closed for 6 hours on 20th June, with some protestors demanding Ratha Jatra celebration.
“God won’t forgive those who have sabotaged and planned this outcome.”
Many felt sad and vented out the frustration amongst family and friends in closed WhatsApp groups or via phone-calls.  
I was surprised to see this message of an advocate of Supreme Court –
“I am so sad I will observe fast on Rath Yatra”.
Despite having knowledge of law, instead of giving info to the ignoramuses like us about the remedy and the next course of action even he had accepted the SC verdict like many others.

History
When the Moghuls attacked Odisha, that time, the idols of the deities were taken to safer places and no Ratha Jatra was held at Puri as the Lord was not there. Out of the 164 years and 4 months Shree Jagannath had stayed out of the Srimandir, Ratha Jatra had been stopped for 155 years. It was held 8 times outside Puri and once inside Srimandir.

Why should we stop a continuing tradition when arrangements were being made for the past couple of months?
I always believe- “God helps those who help themselves.”
But, it’s also true that- “Man proposes, God disposes.”
If man does not propose, then man is stopping the chance of getting any outcome, leave alone favourable or unfavourable.

Not taking a decision or action is also a decision.
Some people pride themselves of being mature and understanding law-abiding citizens and caring for the safety and interests.
And yet, there are some non-understanding and non-cooperative people, whose sentiments had been so hurt that they dared to raise such issues and voiced and requested and demanded a review hoping for a modification in the order.

Devotees and Sebayats were unhappy.
Thankfully, many filed review petitions in the SC against the Ratha Jatra judgment. 
When God interferes, no one can stop an event from happening.
That Ratha Jatra 2020 has been conducted smoothly so far and tomorrow is the concluding day, proves the supremacy of Lord Jagannath.

Ratha Jatra 2020 has proved that celebration with restrictions is possible. 
We could never have excused ourselves for stopping our tradition.

Ratha Jatra's elaborate preparations begin on Akhyaya Tritiya each year. 
This was the first time in several centuries when the situation did not permit crowds.
We devotees felt blessed to watch the LIVE telecast on TV.

There was administrative support. Curfew has been imposed in Puri city and all entry and exit points have been sealed, with extra focus on the Bada Danda, to make this celebration possible.
“Where there is a will, there is a way”.

Ratha Jatra 2020 is unique.
Police and Sebayats pulled the Rathas.
Sebayat, dressed in traditional attire, and Odisha Bandha masks, pulled the Rathas barefoot.

Triumph of Hope and Prayers

In the Bhakta, Bhagaban & Bhutanu tussle, the Bhutanu- Covid19 virus was not allowed to triumph. That would have been a wrong precedent to show the virus as winner against the majority will and hope.

Merciful Lord Jagannath listened to our prayers and decided Ratha Jatra celebration.

He directed Supreme Court to reconsider the judgment! Many are elated that the Lord has answered our prayers.

Rolling of the Rathas  has spread cheer and hope. Even a leaf can’t move without His permission. Whatever is happening is neither Government’s will nor Supreme Court’s imposition; it’s Shree Jagannath’s grace.

Mahaprabhu is the supreme deciding authority!

Some important dates of the Ratha Jatra celebration in 2020-

Ratha Jatra- 23rd June

Hera Panchami- 27th June

Bahuda Jatra- 1st July

Suna Besha- 2nd July

Adhara Pana- 3rd July

Niladri Bije- 4th July

We celebrate Niladri Bije as Rasagola Dibasa. 

This time we will totally celebrate it online on social media. Please share posts with  the hashtag-#RasagolaDibasa.

Jaga Sabu Dekhuchi! - (Shree) Jagannath is watching everything

Chaka Akhi Sabu Dekhuchi! - Round eyes (of Shree Jagannath) see everything

What is your experience with Ratha Jatra 2020? Did you watch it on TV?

Thursday, 25 June 2020

Five Petals - A Collection of Five Short Stories

Five Petals by Chinmayee Gayatree Sahu is a collection of five short stories that bring together different aspects of life, while also sharing their lessons. In her debut book, the author brings to life the characters and the situations they face.

Book Title & Cover

The word 'petals' evokes fragrance and softness. 'Five Petals' is an apt title for five delicate stories. 
The book cover looks fresh with its different colours and assortments. Relationships are delicate and have so many flavours to savour.  

The Author

Chinmayee Gayatree Sahu has a rich experience in the corporate world having worked in various multinational companies and presently working as a Government employee. Her love for the magical world of books and passion for reading and writing has drawn her interest towards content creation. She writes quality articles, be it fiction or non-fiction that can engage her readers and give them wings of imagination. She blogs at - chinmayeecreations.wordpress.com.

Image

Each of the five stories in her maiden ebook is a revelation imparting lessons.

Life: A Roller Coaster Ride!
This is the story of an enthusiastic and graceful girl and her suitors. 
What does Ridhima have to go through after college when she decides to marry? 
The weight of office-work and marriage how does she carry?
Who helps the star student to shine again?

Quarantined With Family
This is the story of a couple and how they cope with the Covid-19 lockdown.
What secrets does Mrs.Pattanaik learn about her children and home?
What was her husband, Mr. Pattanaik upto?
Set during the pandemic when March year-ending and many other events have gone for a toss, life has been thrown out of gear!
Depression, disorder, disturbance fill one with fear.

Dream Or Nightmare
This is the story of a bachelor who finds love; or does he really? 
What is the cost Vinod pays for freedom and for his job in the new place? 
Whom does he meet there?
Does he fall in love? 
Is there an engagement and wedding?
Do his eyes finally find his loved one?

Neetu & Aja 
This is the story of a girl and her grandfather.
Why is Aja partial to Neetu's brother, Raghav?
What does Neetu have to go through?
What does Aja write to her?

Beyond Borders
This is the story of a couple whose love has withstood time and borders.
What is the specialty of 'Fusion Resort'?
What makes Uncle John and Aunt Meenu a special pair?

To find out the answers of the above questions, do read this book!
In the author's words, this book- 
"can be enjoyed over a cup of tea/coffee and promises to take the readers into the five different worlds and provide a memorable experience."
The author's description of the characters makes them relatable. 
I liked the understanding and enthusiastic partners, family life, and lessons.
The author pays keen attention to details. 
We know exactly how Ridhima is dressed for the first day of college - even what shade of lipstick she is wearing! 
The reader can appreciate the variety of flowers and trees in Aja's rich garden!
"Aja" is the Odia word for maternal grandfather. I liked the author's use of the term. I remembered my Aja while reading the story and got very emotional. I took a trip to my Aja and Aaee's house, which is pretty similar to the one described in the story. The well-written letter brought tears to my eyes.

The author has a good grasp of human relations and has done a commendable job in expressing different emotions through her series of short stories. Her knowledge of the corporate world makes her seamlessly incorporate industry information in her stories.

A Note To The Author-
Dear Chinmayee,
Here are some words to you from me!
I agree what seems perfect may not be-
What's meant to be will happen ultimately.
Life is crazy with its turns and twists,
Keep moving on & emerge out of the mists! 
Just as discovered by the characters in your stories-
If life gives us locks, we must look for the keys! :)

A Note To The Reader-
Download "Five Petals" right away. It's available for free download just for a couple of days.

Just like the author has used words from the local language, it is our responsibility to endeavour to use the local words. Once we all start using, then they can become popular. 
I have shared this in my eBook - about the "Geographical Indications (GIs) of Odisha" that is available for free download here.

Dots & Streaks - Poetic Tales, Musings And More

Dots & Streaks by Ellora Mishra is a delightful book of interesting short poetic tales and musings that makes one think. Creative words with smart and keen observations express the understanding and empathy in the author's sensitive mind.
The short book description is interesting and welcoming:
A few dots
A few streaks
Short poetic tales
Musings of life’s
Crevices & creeks
Book
The Author

Author Ellora Mishra hails from Odisha, India. She has had a bright academic career with degrees in Engineering and Business Management respectively from BITS Pilani and XIMB. Having spent twelve years as a professional corporate banker, Ellora has now chosen to pursue her passion of writing & other hobbies. She is presently based at Netherlands. She blogs at - Live Life To The Fullest.

 Image

Wednesday, 24 June 2020

The Science Project

Ammu was very pleased with her science project.
Her months of experiments had borne fruits eggs! 
She had succeeded in creating eggs in the laboratory at her home! 

These were special as these were the world's first vegetarian eggs- Vegeggs!

Vegeggs had been created using ingredients from plants. 

Tuesday, 23 June 2020

Ratha Jatra 2020 And Odisha Bandha Masks

Ratha Jatra is a special annual festival of the Shree Jagannath Temple, Puri, Odisha, India.
Lord Jagannath comes out of His abode with His brother, Lord Balabhadra, and sister, Devi Subhadra. In majestic Rathas (chariots) and as per ancient traditions, the siblings set out to their birthplace - SriGundicha Temple about 3 kilometres away.
Many rituals are observed during the Ratha Jatra period as per the customs. 
More images here- Ratha Jatra


Today, June 23rd, 2020, Ratha Jatra 2020 is being held in a tough time during this Covid-19 pandemic with strict guidelines in place. For the past time in centuries, public participation is not allowed.


Sebayats of the Shree Jagannath Temple and police personnel are allowed to pull the chariots this time.
They have been provided Odisha Bandha masks.

Wednesday, 17 June 2020

The Prayer

After receiving a phone-call, she prayed, “God! Let this be untrue... My Mintu can't die," before collapsing on the floor. 

When she came to her senses, she was on her bed.

Mintu entered the room with the doctor.

"What happened?"

"I fell unconscious. Mintu brought me to my senses and administered me syrup. I fell asleep. Thanks to Mintu, I’m alive."
PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields
The doctor and Mintu were perplexed.

Tuesday, 16 June 2020

Sushant Singh Rajput - Talented Star Shines On

A rank-holder with a brilliant and analytical mind, 
Chose acting & decided for the Bollywood grind.
He left his engineering course, without nitty gritty;
He rejected scholarship from a foreign University.

His good looks, hard-work, passion, screen presence, 
His raw energy, talent, boyish charms & smartness... 
He trained hard; his extra effort shines in all he did. 
He supported students & sponsored the less-privileged.

He inspired his fans, replied to messages & gave hope.
And then he had to face abuse, battle demons & cope...
He had a cool bucket-list; was already fulfilling dreams. 
Few saw his delicate frame & heard his inner screams.

His disarming smile hid deep secrets & gave no clue.
Many were unaware of what he was going through. 
Some caused/knew about this; couldn't stop him-
Circumstances are responsible for this step extreme. 

A very shocking & sad news for his fans lay in store-
That this dynamic complete entertainer is no more...
We mourn his loss; feel a family-member has gone far;
He'll continue to shine in our sky like a bright star.

Amul Image Tribute
Source: Amul on Twitter

Friday, 12 June 2020

Gajapati Date Palm Jaggery- Geographical Indication Application Filed


Date Palm trees are abundantly available in hillsides of the Gajapati district of Odisha. 
Gajapati Date Palm Jaggery made by the Saura Tribals of cottage industry is being produced under the Odisha Rajya Talgur Samabaya Sangha Ltd (ORTSS). This is a Govt. of Odisha Enterprise.
Thousands of tribals are engaged in the production of Date Palm Jaggery.

Date Palm is called "Tala" and Gur is called "Guda" in Odia.
Image
Source
Gur forms an intrinsic part of Odisha's food habits. It forms a part of breakfast menu and is used for preparation of many dishes like "Khatta" (e.g. Amba Khatta is a sweet dish made using raw mangoes). 
The importance of Gur can be gauged from the fact that Gur is distributed during relief work.
Gajapati Date Palm Jaggery” -  GI Application No- 690 has been filed.
It has been facilitated by Dr. P. Karthigeyan, IPR Expert, from CTTC, MSME- IPFC, Ministry of MSME, Govt. of India.   

Date Palm Jaggery is a natural sweetener obtained from sweet juice (neera) of the Date Palm trees that are grown in natural climate. Gajapati  Date Palm Jaggery is prepared in trapezoidal form called Patali Gur. This jaggery is produced by traditional method and has unique taste and flavour

Test samples of Date Palm Jaggery were tested in Central Govt. laboratories for establishing the scientific and technical nature for uniqueness. 

This delicious jaggery has the following qualities-
1. The colour of Date Palm Jaggery is dark brown in nature.
2. It is organic as no natural or synthetic colouring agents and artificial sweetening agents are added during the preparation process of this jaggery
3. It supplements iron and vitamin deficiency. 
4. Has medicinal value and used in preparation of Ayurvedic medicines for curing asthma, gastric disorders, cough etc .
5. Contains less sugar percent than sugarcane jaggery, crystal sugar and other sweetening agents and is thus used by the diabetic patients.
6. More nutritive than other sweeteners as it is rich in vitamins and natural minerals.
7. Date Palm Jaggery has the following unique scientific and technical characteristics with respect to other sugarcane jaggery:
It possesses a  PH-5.42 , Total Sugar-80.3%,  Sucrose -65.10% Reducing Sugar -11.81%, Total Ash -4.7%,  Iron-14.02 mg/100gm , Calcium -288.7 mg/ 100gm  as  per test results  of different samples of Date Palm Jaggery from Central Govt laboratories.

The GI tag application process will have to go through the stages, projecting uniqueness from scientific and technical aspects after which the GI tag can be earned. 
GI Tag has its advantages. The interests of tribals can be protected, and there will be more scope for employment, livelihood and saleThe demand can increase.

Odisha had earned the GI Tag for Odisha Rasagola last year. There is more interest about GI. 
More producer groups like the - Odisha Rajya Talgur Samabaya Sangha Ltd (ORTSS) should come forward and share details to support GI application submission so that their products can be registered as GI.
Odisha has 17 GI Tags now.
You can learn more about the registered GIs of Odisha here-
Geographical Indications (GIs) of Odisha 
You can download my eBook that is available for free download for a limited time here-
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