:)

:)

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Leaves


'Under the quiet dead leaves,

A new season breathes'




Colorpencil on 130 gsm paper
Pic by Sally Robertson



Monday, December 4, 2017

The Hungry Man


One in white and another in saffron
Both beguiled a nameless feeble man
On to their sides with much fervor
Tried all they could to win his favors
And preached him respective canticles
Their concepts of hell and paradise
Of death and being and after-life
Of religion, faith and myths
Of society, perks and benefits

And when all insight out they did blurt,
He was asked the side he would convert
Saffron and white, stress both did exert
But he thought for a moment and alleged
He belonged to the biggest assemblage
“I, of the clan and order of the hungry
Can be every color you want me to be
But any day I would surely choose
To thy range of Gods, a mouthful food”
Honestly said the man and glaringly stared

But white and saffron were as if prepared
They tagged him a mole of another color
Cried, nasty seemed his ‘humble’ answers
And for having their ‘pure’ image maligned
The hungry man was jailed, for speaking his mind


Tuesday, November 21, 2017

P!nk

P!nk is one of my fav singers! Her songs have a deep meaning; be it ‘Fuc***g Perfect’, ‘So What’ or, ‘Stupid Girls’, every song is awesome!



Alecia Beth Moore (Sep 8, 1979) known as P!nk, is an American singer, songwriter, dancer and actress. She was signed to her first record label with original R&B girl group Choice in 1995. Recognized for her strong signature vocals and acrobatic performances, she has sold over 47 million albums worldwide. She has been credited for breaking boundaries and pushing the envelope throughout her career and regarded as the "most trailblazing artist" of her pop generation. Pink is an animal-rights activist and a prominent campaigner for PETA, contributing her voice toward causes such as the protest against KFC. 

Read more@ Wiki



Thursday, November 16, 2017

Lentil Spinach Fries

Iron is an important ingredient and having iron rich food is of paramount importance. It is a key component in our blood and is needed to carry oxygen around in the body. People who have an iron deficiency often have pale complexions, general tiredness and breathlessness. Women often develop irregular and painful periods hence to have an iron rich diet is very necessary. I really enjoy cooking so here I present a simple vegetarian dish that is not only rich in iron but is very easy to prepare as well. Let’s go!

This dish is made of yellow lentils (dhuli moong dal) and spinach (palak). The best thing in this preparation is that the lentils will not be cooked hence most of the nutrition remains intact. Moong dal is a very good source of protein and iron. Spinach on the other hand, always reminds me of Popeye! It is a super food and is very rich in iron, vitamin C, niacin, potassium and riboflavin. We will use another amazing thing for garnishing but as for now that is a little surprise! 


Cooking Time- 15-25 min

Ingredients-

1.     1 Cup yellow lentil (Moong Dal)
2.     Cleaned leaves of fresh spinach
3.     2 green chilies
4.     A small piece of ginger
5.     Whole black pepper
6.     Salt to taste
7.     1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
8.     A pinch of asafoetida ( heeng) as per taste
9.     1/2 teaspoon dried red chili powder
10.   Oil for deep frying

Method-

-Soak 1 cup yellow lentil/ moong dal in minimal water for 4-5 hours. Add a pinch of salt.


-Stain water and make a batter of green chilies, ginger and soaked lentils in a grinder. Make sure that the batter is slightly coarse and thick.


-Add salt, red chilli powder, coriander powder, heeng, black pepper in the batter and mix well. 

-Heat oil for deep frying.

-Take one spinach leaf and apply batter on the both sides and put in the oil. Keep the burner on low and fry it on constant low heat for sometime till it is golden brown. Fry other leaves similarly. 

-Add grated Gooseberry (Amla) and Cheese (paneer) on the leaves as the Vitamin C in Amla increases the absorption of iron and hence adding Amla will be very beneficial.

-Serve with love and enjoy with tomato ketchup!

This dish is easy to prepare and is very rich in iron and many other nutrients. I hope you will enjoy it!


To increase iron in your diet, you can also take ‘Livogen’ which is numero uno Iron supplement!


#livogenironchef


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Friday, November 3, 2017

A Clean House

It is midnight and I enter our room
As one enters a graveyard, sullenly
The air hangs dreary and dull
You lie there with remote in your hands
And a frown upon your indifferent face
You peer at me from behind your glasses
And in one stare mock my dusky skin
Laugh upon my small breasts
And rebuke me for a petty dowry
You, in one roll of eyes, turn to dust
All dreams my unwary heart had spun
When you had branded my forehead red
And tied the noose of gold-black beads
You do not utter a single word but I
Stand there yelling with muted ones

I go to the kitchen and scrub the sparkling sink,
Arrange the glassware on the spotless shelves
Then to the drawing room and vacuum the carpet
Clean invisible cobwebs and dust the showcases
It is 2 in the night and I can hear you snore
I come and lay beside you, staring at your back
Pushing back my stubborn tears, I try to sleep
For I have another, far tough a task at hand,
I will have to manage a sweet cheery smile
When tomorrow neighbors will admire
This squeaky clean house...


Emotional Violence (EV) is the worst of all. Without any physical injury, it deeply damages the victim’s self confidence, dignity and sense of self-worth and leads to chronic health issues. Most victims bear it in some form or the other, either exclusively or along with physical abuse. Unfortunately, it is not taken as seriously as it needs to be. It is like constantly breathing in stale air; no visible effects will be palpable in short term but over the time, chronic problems will appear. It gives chronic problems like migraines, insomnia, poor concentration, anxiety disorders, loss of appetite, suicidal tendencies, alcohol and drug abuse and skin rashes. Hence, EV is rather more damaging than physical violence, for it dents the very sanity and soul of the victim. It is a common perception that EV is a sign or precursor to physical violence which is a completely false notion; it is proper DV in itself and not just a sign.

Implying threats, use of demeaning and bitter words, public humiliation, constant criticism, passing or implying unwanted off-color remarks on body, weight, height, complexion, family background or such things, not talking properly or in rude monosyllables (stonewalling), manipulating victim to question her own sanity and memory (gas lighting), dowry harassment, emotional blackmailing and undue manipulation are all various hues of EV. This type of abuse must be taken very seriously and if needed, one must leave the relationship be it at any stage or any cost. 

According to a study by BBC, the rate of suicide by housewives in India is alarmingly high and EV is a major reason behind this. 


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Stepping Towards A Super Life!


No matter, how much we crib about our lives and the never ending troubles in Delhi-NCR, the reality, if seen through a finer lens is that this area has been constantly evolving. In medieval India, Delhi was a hub of poetry and dance and now it is of fashion and food. The places and the people constantly evolve and Delhi-NCR is one area where this change is felt more than anywhere else. Our lives may not be as of those living in scenic Europe or of high profile areas of New York but in our own way, at our own pace we have been evolving too, transforming for better through various initiatives taken by the government, the private companies like Vodafone and through joint ventures- public and private partnership, i.e. PPP. People and NGOs have played a major role in this transformation as well.

One such step towards a super life has been taken by Gurugram and Faridabad officials. The Bandhwari solid waste treatment plant that is located along the Gurugram - Faridabad road in the Aravalli Hills area will be developed to generate 10MW of electricity on a daily basis. These days, internet connectivity and an uninterrupted supply of full voltage electricity are two things that have become the backbone of every life especially when everything from paying bills to purchase & marketing, mails, and entertainment is being done online and also when most youngsters are taking to the Internet to launch their own business and for social networking. This plant was earlier defunct for nearly four years and had become a liability, but now with the Memorandum of Understanding already signed and the paperwork completed, it has come alive and kicking. This Rs 330 Cr plant will generate energy from waste and a Chinese firm has been roped in to collect waste from Gurugram and Faridabad. The best thing is that the electricity will be generated from waste and this plant has a capacity of processing 600 Tonnes of waste daily. Disposal of waste is becoming almost an unmanageable problem worldwide. Recently at Ghazipur on Delhi - Ghaziabad road a collapse of the massive waste dump hillock caused an accident killing several people.
This is an eye opener not only on the poor disposal management system but also on the magnitude of the problem. The present step at Bhandwari is an important step towards addressing the problem. Apart from that, the officials will visit China to learn more about the technology to develop the plant more efficiently and a team will be formed to independently review and monitor the progress of the unit regularly.

These are some steps that can help us in living a super life. Another important step is the ban of pet coke and furnace oil in Haryana to clean up the toxic air that has been chocking the state. These two toxic elements are already banned in Delhi since in 1996, but are widely used in NCR by factories manufacturing dyes, cement, paper, ceramics and bricks. The emissions on burning of pet coke and furnace oil contain Oxides of Sulphur and Nitrogen whose tiny particles settle deep inside the lungs and cause many grave diseases. Pollution is a mass killer; it kills hundreds of people in Delhi NCR annually. Most importantly, we owe a cleaner air to our coming generation and cannot suffocate them with our follies that lead to such serious air pollution. Clean air and water are the two fundamental elements of any life; nothing can survive in a gas chamber that unfortunately, Delhi NCR has been turning into.

Hence from more electricity to a cleaner air, the dream of a super life is not that far away; it is attainable for sure now. Vodafone too, has launched a series of super initiatives like supporting startups like Oyo and Zomato that in the long run strengthen the economy, digitally connecting Delhi NCR with 120 free Wi-Fi hotspot zones, especially in key areas like Airport. This Diwali too, Vodafone launched Super Crackers that were filled with eco-friendly seeds and were made available across Vodafone stores. This is Corporate Social responsibility in true sense.


Visit https://www.vodafone.in/home-delhi for more interesting initiatives.
#CelebratingSuper

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Images & ref from here and here




Monday, October 16, 2017

A Super Life!

Let us be honest- what actually comes to your mind when you hear this word ‘Faridabad’? I asked a few friends from Delhi and they replied ‘an old city in the outskirts of Delhi’, ‘a city something like Agra’ or some even said a scene of a rustic small town comes to their mind. Faridabad is an important city of Haryana and is a major industrial hub. It is also the biggest henna exporter in India. Sadly, due to certain power issues, it was not developed as fast as Gurgaon or now Gurugram was developed but it was a blessing in disguise. Today, Faridabad is a perfect amalgamation of old world charm and rising industrial growth. Also, I request those who consider it rustic and very down-market to visit the city and see how quickly their opinions change.

Life was not exactly super a decade back in this city, I agree. There were fewer malls and one Town Park garden. However, of late there have been several positive efforts taken for the convenience of the people and now we can live a super life! I am not talking of malls, multiplexes and good restaurant chains in Faridabad city or some top schools opened in Faridabad but of other reforms. The most important of these reforms is that of Metro Line. This train has been a boost for this city and has changed the way people travel. Earlier, there were shared autos for those opting for public transports that were cheap but very inconvenient. With the advent of Delhi Metro Violet Line, 9 important points across 14 kilometer distance are connected with Delhi and people can travel in comfort and in far lesser time. Apart from Metro project, the Badarpur flyover also gives much convenience to travelers going by road to Delhi and outside the city. Further, NH2, an important Highway from Delhi to Agra and Mathura passes straight through Faridabad. Now, a number of flyovers have been built to make the entire stretch through Faridabad free of jams and intersections.

An average man spends a good chunk on communication and travel. Metro railway has made travel quick, trendy and easy. There next comes communication for which Vodaphone has taken some good steps like connecting Delhi NCR with 120 free Wi-Fi zones. These days when everything from cab to movie bookings is being done online, Wi-Fi is a very necessary service.  Faridabad is an important NCR city and every initiative that is taken in Delhi and NCR has an impact on Faridabad as well. When the pollution of Delhi rose to an alarming point, the impact could be seen in Faridabad as well as most people are employed and travel to the capital city only. Vodaphone came forward and set up the first Air-Purifying bus shelter in Delhi. With this step, people could breathe non-polluted air while waiting for a bus on the bus-stand.

Some key real estate developments have taken place in areas that were far-fetched and outskirts and on some land that was not coming to much fruitful a use. These real estate housings have given housing solutions to hundreds of people and have allowed them to live in upfront and better areas and conditions.

I have noticed some changes in social pattern as well. A decade back, not many women could be seen sporting shorts and skirts but now, casually on the streets, one can spot women wearing clothes as per their style without being conscious of the rustic atmosphere that was more prevalent. More hospitals, schools and universities have opened up now in this city. These are some subtle but very strong indicators that growth indeed has taken place and will continue to do so in future as well. Hence, there are many positive efforts that have been done in Delhi NCR that have given us a freedom to lead Super Lives!

Interestingly, Vodafone in its mission to support a Green Diwali, is spreading the use of Super Crackers that are filled with eco-friendly plant seeds. These are available at 52 Vodafone Delhi stores from 16th – 19th October 2017. You just need to plant it and let the plant blossom!


Visit www.vodafone.in/home-delhi for more pleasant surprises!

#CelebratingSuper

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Saturday, October 14, 2017

Legacy


Even today that you are long gone,
I cannot smile, it just doesn’t come
The air in the room hangs heavy
The scars refuse to fade away
My throat is still choked with
All that I could never dare say

The legacy you have given to our son
Makes me relive those moments gone
I sit in our room like a faded old doll
Used, battered and misshapen
My old ears still ringing with your vile yells,
Can hear the buckle of our son’s belt open
‘Click’ your legacy makes those familiar sounds
I shut my mind; wrap my head tight in my hands
Yet, they hurt like death, those old wounds…

Tomorrow, I will tell his wife how to hide torn lip
Within layers of glossy crimson lipstick
And how to conceal blackened eyes
Under smoky mascara club style
You had made me an expert
In some other uses of make up
.
.
‘click’ comes another sound
Ah, they always will hurt…those old wounds…
 **

Domestic Violence (DV) is often trans-generational. Most reports and studies on this subject suggest that in more than 80% cases this tendency can pass on from one generation to the other. Children who grow up in abusive and violent households can develop multiple behavioral, physiological and personality disorders. 

They can show abrupt or extreme aggression from an early age which is an unhealthy sign. They often perceive DV to be natural, someway justified and even acceptable on the part of the victim. In general, such children can be severely verbally abusive towards everyone. For healthy development of a child’s psyche, it is the responsibility of both the parents to provide him/her a peaceful home atmosphere conducive to mental and physical health and well being.

Also, preconditioning women and girls to accept DV quietly must be strongly discouraged, otherwise they will never be able to take their stand or rescue themselves and other women. 





Thursday, October 5, 2017

Monday, October 2, 2017

Old Wood



Old Wood in color pencil.

FC Polychromos and black gel pen on 130 gsm paper.



Saturday, September 30, 2017

Wonderland!


I was Alice- lost as ever
My mind was the ‘White Rabbit’ with the watch- ever hopping towards you
You were the ‘Caterpillar’- detached and way too shrewd
My common sense was the ‘Cheshire Cat’- on and off!
The society was the ‘Red Queen of Hearts’- Sullen and always ready to punish
My heart was like, no points for guessing, ‘Humpty Dumpty’!

No surprise why my life itself has turned into a surreal ‘Wonderland’!



Wednesday, September 27, 2017

The Turmoil of Change

The recent spat in BHU campus in Banaras highlights an underlying pattern. The birth of new ideas is never easy; the change from the league always faces much turmoil and resistance. The old mentalities take centuries to change and this change has started, albeit late, in the very ‘Hindu’ campus of BHU. If we look closely, any religion or ideology, if applied upon the masses in rather its ‘pure’ form, tends to decay. The traditional ‘Hindu’ ideology which has always vociferously opposed the Muslim one, tagging it as ‘barbaric’ and ‘misogynist’ has put its foot in mouth by asking girl students to ignore lurid remarks and to stay indoors post evening. Similarly, nations where a comparatively ‘pure’ Muslim ideology rules, horrendous condition of women has attracted international flak. Even the elite and powerful snooty Great Britain that has ruled almost every country and looks down upon Hinduism and Islam, the ‘Georgian’ as well as the ‘Victorian’ periods of pure ‘Christianity’ have been atrocious for women. Jane Austen’s novels describe how women suffered, for they had absolutely no rights and were dependent upon the males for everything. From being forced to study at home to developing coquetry skills, women in Britain were raised with a single goal- to find a suitable husband. Austen’s another famous novel ‘Sense and Sensibility’ makes this point far more clear.

So, the pattern is that any religion if given a free reign in application of its core ideology on subjects tends to restrict the liberty of its women folk first. Clerics all around the world have been insecure of women and their education. In her seminal work ‘A Room of One’s Own’, Virginia Woolf reveals that women were not given entry inside the Oxford University library and also that the university allowed a separate girls college only after much protest. So, be it any religion, core ideology is always polar to women and their rights, even most fundamental ones. The society has always been male dominated and as usual, in BHU also, girls were asked to ‘ignore’ the molesters and ‘shut up’. What can be more unfortunate than to encourage dirty psychopaths?

Surprisingly, the interior areas of Mongolia, tribes of Africa and Jews (hated even in the poems of ancient Greek poet Homer and Shakespeare; the Song of the Witches’ in Macbeth has these lines about Jews- ‘Liver of blaspheming Jew; Gall of goat; and slips of yew’) can boast of a high gender equality. People we cast off as ‘wild’ and ‘uncultured’ can teach us a lesson or two on respecting women.

The change never stops; it arrives gradually and like birth, like a plant it has to claw its way up, break the seed and then ground to come out and survive. Anything that is forced in its unaltered form tends to suppress the weakest parts of the population first. Hence, any religion or ideology must be flexible and must be altered with time, and most importantly, must not be forced. After all, gender equality is the foremost sign of a culture that keeps up with change and adjusts well with its flexible framework.

Ironically, all this is happening during the Navratri festival. By the way, fresh sprouts are appearing on the rusted saffron ground in Banaras and from all of my heart I want them to survive and grow.